Cake, cake, and more cake

Good news – we survived our sugar high! On Saturday I ate the most cake I have ever had in my entire life, ok maybe not the most, but certainly the most flavors! They were all delicious, but we did have two or three favorites that made the cut and will be options.
The best part of the day by far was dinner with everyone, Peg, Dan, Terry, Robbi, Christy, Katy, and Chris and I. Everyone exclaimed, “Wow, this is a lot of cake!!!” We didn’t eat it all, but everyone left full! The best news – everyone agreed on the top three choices! How lucky are we!!! On Sunday, Chris and I went showshoeing and all Chris kept saying was, I want more cake!!!
Now its time to work off that cake binge…. :)

Two Words: Flower. Overload.

I need to interject a man post between the sudden bloom … ahem … explosion of flower posts that seem to have appeared on our wedding blog. The only problem is that I don’t have much man stuff to report about. Lindsey has been on top of planning this weekend’s dual-family cake testing event, which should prove to be one of the highlights of the wedding planning process. We’re trying a couple of local wedding cake bakers to see how they compare. I know very little about the details, but assume they’re both capable of incorporating pyrotechnics and animatronic golfers into the cake design. And if not, then we’ll have to look elsewhere. Only kidding, of course, but it is fun to dream about what to do – especially, when there’s a slight golf theme to the wedding as there is to ours.

In other news, which I’m surprised isn’t up here yet, Lindsey’s bridal fashion photograph appeared in this past week’s Northern Express. It even mentions my name! But she’s the beautiful bride-to-be.

I can’t imagine a better run-up to a wedding. Time-wise, we’re at the halfway point of the planning. However, we’re more than halfway done with the planning… or so we think. I’m sure it will get frantic when the “Big Day” looms.

It might be awhile before you hear from me again, as Valentine’s Day is fast approaching and most of my excess mental capacity will be spent trying to top my gift from last year. (Lindsey, that’s a softball lob to you to write a Valentine’s Day post!)

Commentary on Connectedness

This morning I jotted down some thoughts about our state of connectedness, the improvements and advancements in technology (e.g., smartphones) and websites/applications (e.g., Facebook) that enable us to be more connected and in tune with one another and with available information, and the misconception that being more connected means we should be more available.

I posit that there isn’t a positive correlation between increased connectedness and increased availability, but rather a positive correlation between increased connectedness and the option to increase one’s availability.

For example, if I took a trip to Vail Colorado to ski in 1963, the year after the resort opened, and you wanted to call me, you’d have to call the lodge at which I was staying. If I was in the lodge, I might be able to take your call. However, if I was skiing, then I would be unavailable. That situation is, more or less, a binary situation: available or not available.

Today, I have an iPhone on me at most times. As before, you can try to reach me at anytime. However, unlike before, your expectation that I’m available, able, and willing to receive the call is greatly increased because even when I’m not in the lodge, I have the technically ability to receive a phone call (or text, etc.). Therein lies the misconception on the part of the caller (you) that the receiver (me) is more available now than in 1963. Instead, I now has the option to be more available, but also, to your frustration, the option to be less available.


In light of the above, the recent story that “in an action unprecedented in Internet history, the Egyptian government appears to have ordered service providers to shut down all international connections to the Internet.” There is loss of internet and sms capability, apparently. That’s one way to quell the expectation of availability.

Recollection of Driving Alone

I park my 1996 white Ford Explorer outside each night. The snow piles on. The plow plows it in. The moisture inside from the tracking in of snow on my boots is frozen deep into the synthetic gray carpet fibers and won’t escape until late spring. There is ice on the windshield from the warm defroster air blowing on it during my five minute drive home from work the night before.

My car is exceptionally clean on the inside. Especially for such an old car. There are only a few things inside it: an ice scraper, a pair of snowshoes, and a frisbee leftover from summertime fun.

It’s not the detail of my car that I’m reminded of this morning, but the trips I have taken in it. Specifically, not any one trip in particular, but any of the long cross-half-country trips that began before sunrise on the cold like today.

There was a routine to it all. I’d unlock the driver’s door and pull it open slowly so that the snow along the top edge wouldn’t fall and blow all over the driver’s seat. Then I would set my full travel mug of hot coffee down in the cup holder before starting the car. Once it was cleared of snow, I’d jump in (careful, always, to know my shoes together to rid them of snow).

Like we’re taught in elementary school that stories have a beginning, middle and end, the drives that began before sunrise and lasted through the day had the same progression. The beginning and end were enjoyable – the middle I just had to get through.

Early on in the drive, my leather seats were cold and warming up. I was settling into the seat and the heat in the car was still cold. My coffee kept me warm, but the empty bottom of the mug always showed itself before my first stop for gas. Early morning radio – usually Mike & Mike or another news variety show – was better than the repeat information I would hear the rest of the day. I rarely listened to music.

Eventually, there was a point – maybe an hour into the ride – when I would feel settled. I would enter the zone and just keep the car rolling. This was maintained, despite stops along the way.

Getting out to get gas, snacks, more coffee – that was a challenge. Usually the weather was cold and blowing. There were times when the gas would blow on my pants and I’d have to change to escape the smell.