Archive for the ‘Current Events’ Category

Strawberry Picking 2020

Saturday, April 11th, 2020

Even though we are under a “Shelter-in Place” Order due to COVID-19, we are allowed to get groceries. So we made the trek out to Elliot Farms to get some fresh strawberries. This has become an annual spring tradition for us.

Social Distancing

Sunday, March 29th, 2020

Our lives have certainly slowed down due to COVID-19 closures. There are no soccer games, no refereeing, no swimming, no school, no travel, no anything.  Tristan is still working at Chick-Fil-A and Kimberlie and I still work (although about half of mine is telework).  Mackenzie and Rilianne are bored out of their minds. Fortunately, the weather has been beautiful!

Quarantine Zoom Pre-K

Thursday, March 26th, 2020

Thanks to COVID-19, this is how Rilianne will have Pre-K for the foreseeable future — using Zoom.

Hanson String Theory Tour with ASO

Sunday, October 21st, 2018

From middle school until I was about 17, I listened exclusively to country music.  I went to several concerts, including two Reba McEntire concerts. I was even in her fan club at one point.

In 11th grade, I sat in honors chemistry next to this girl named Travero. We would talk about all sorts of stuff, including our cultural differences. She was a very smart black female and I was just an average white male. At some point, she encouraged me to branch out and give other types of music a try. Of course, I didn’t know which genre to listen to so on the way home, I tuned in to the local pop station.  After listening to that for a few months, I began to watch a little MTV and became hooked on Total Request Live.

Sometime during my senior year, I was exposed to this band of little kids, called Hanson. I was intriqued that these kids, all of who were younger than me, were such talented musicians.  The song MMMBop was a little cheezy — of course, it was the late 90s when everything was cheezy — but when Weird came out, I knew it was my anthem. I bought the CD “Middle of Nowhere”. They quickly became my favorite band.

Unfortunately, they were classified as a “boy band”. All of the other boy bands were a manufactured group of while males who could sing and dance. They had no real musical talent or instrumental abilities. There was 98 degrees, Backstreet Boys, NSync, LFO, and others during that time.  Hanson on the other hand, were a set of brothers who wrote and played their own music. Grouping them with the “boy bands” has caused them to be terminally underrated.  I believe that their Christmas album “Snowed In” (now 20 years old) is the best holiday album of all time.

I attended my first Hanson concert on July 5, 1998 at Lakewood Ampitheatre in Atlanta. Two years later, I followed them from Atlanta to Charlotte to Myrtle Beach. In the years since, I’ve seen them several more times in Atlanta. I have all of their CDs and know all of their songs.  I’ve met them twice. Over the years, their music has consistently matured. Today, their art is so far from MMMBop that when the average person hears their more recent stuff, they are in disbelief when I tell them it is Hanson.

When I was on my 2nd or 3rd date with Kimberlie, I was looking through her CD collection and stumbled across a Hanson album. I knew then that she was the one for me.

It hasn’t been easy being a fan of Hanson.  Their typical fan in the beginning was 12-15 year old white females who had one or more of them as crushes. And then, there was me. I was just there for the music.  I’ve been laughed at, ridicules, called gay, etc. for being a fan.  I’ve made many Hanson friends along the way and I’ll be a fan forever.

Last night, I attended ther Atlanta show on their String Theory tour. They are touring and performing with symphone orchestras around the world.  Last night, they performed with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Since Mackenzie plays percussion in the middle school band, I took her along. For her, seeing the instruments at work was amazing. For me, hearing my favorite band accompanied by a 75 piece grammy winning orchestra was simply amazing.

Mackenzie and I in front of the tour bus:

Mackenzie playing a random piano outside of the arts center:

Hanson!

Over those 20+ years of attending concerts I’ve noticed that Hanson fans have changed considerably. They are no longer the cute little teenage girls. Now, they are typically 35+, overweight (this is not meant to be derogatory — I am in this boat as well). They also need a glass of wine before the show. They mostly all wear glasses (as do I sometime) and have tattoos. Oddly enough, a good bit of them smoke.  Those are just my observations.

Snow Day 2018

Wednesday, January 17th, 2018

We woke up this morning to a beautiful snow day. Unfortunately, adults don’t really get snow days so both of us made the trip to Macon for work.

Here are some photos of my car, my house, and my job covered in the beautiful dusting of snow.

 

The Eclipse

Monday, August 21st, 2017

Today was the big eclipse. Unfortunately, we didn’t have a full blackout, but it did get dark enough for the street lights to come on. It was sort of creepy how it just darkened in the middle of the day.

Back across the street at work, folks were gathering on the roof. I should have stayed over there!

There is always interesting graffiti in the Macon parking garages!

Intern Mackenzie

Wednesday, March 29th, 2017

Tristan and Mackenzie have been on spring break this week with nowhere to and nothing to do. At work, there is currently a project happening that involves a lot of mundane work like opening envelopes and sorting items. Mackenzie accompanied me to work today to assist with the project.

At lunch, we ventured out into Third Street Park, where some lunch hour Cherry Blossom festivities were happening.  Vendors were giving out free cherry ice cream and pink donuts.

We then rode over to The Bear’s Den to actually eat. As you can see, Mackenzie chose a slice of strawberry cake for dessert.

Since she didn’t need the donut, she took it home for Rilianne to enjoy. And enjoy she did!

Summer Storms

Thursday, July 21st, 2016

This has not been the best week for the homes on my street.

Cherry Blossom Road Race 10K

Saturday, March 19th, 2016

The whole family ran the Cherry Blossom Road Race 10K this morning. Kimberlie pushed Rilianne until I found her on the out-and-back course and then I pushed her from there. I had never ran with a stroller before today and it was tough! It’s hard to run without moving your arms.

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Both Tristan and Mackenzie got first place in their age groups. Not too many kids run 10Ks.

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Five Year Work Anniversary

Monday, March 7th, 2016

Five years ago today, I started working for the United States Courts. This morning, the boss presented me with a service certificate and a service pin.

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I’m under a social networking policy, so I won’t discuss the specifics of my job here, but I will say that it has been the most rewarding job I have ever had.

Publix was my favorite job of all time. I LOVED working with the people and customers. And, I loved the fact that when I clocked out, my day was over. No taking work home or worrying about how much I didn’t get done. If I could keep my hours, pay, and benefits, I would go back to Publix without thinking twice.

Mercer was the best group of people that I worked with.  The eager law students and the faculty and staff were wonderful. But the politics and shenanigans were draining. I also felt that I was part of a pyramid scheme — part of an culture that convinced second-tier students to incur massive amounts of debt for a degree that may or may not pay off for them.  Sure, I just did information technology, but I was still a part of that.

Working for the federal judiciary has been the most rewarding.  I’m not only talking about rewarding in pay and benefits. It has certainly been rewarding in those areas, but I also feel a sense that I make somewhat of a difference in the world.  There have been many days that I do some little task in preparation for a moment that becomes part of the evening news. From court cases to naturalization ceremonies, it is great to be a part of something that matters.