Sunday, December 09, 2018

Omaha ... Curling Capitol?!?

Last year Omaha hosted both Curling Night in America and the Olympic Curling Trials.  This year Omaha is co-hosting (with legs in Suzhou, China and Jonkoping, Sweden and a grand finale in Beijing, China) the Curling World Cup.  This year the world cup includes ten nations - USA, Canada, Russia, South Korea, China, Japan, Sweden, Norway, Switzerland, and Scotland.

The Curling sheets in Ralston Arena.
This leg is being held in Ralston Arena which is like five minutes from where I live.  I went to the opening session on Wednesday, another one on Friday, and, with the Wife, the last session on Sunday which showcased the men's team final.  The women teams and mix doubles were earlier on Sunday.  Team Schuster, the American team, won the the Men's event, Japan won the Women's event, and Norway won the mixed doubles' event.

My souvenir from the Curling World Cup: a tiny curling stone only an inch and a half across.
Last year I bought a T-Shirt as a souvenir.  This year I bought a scale model of a curling stone made with authentic granite (from Scotland) and a metal handle.

A few photos (taken with my cell phone) can be found in my 2018-12 Curling World Cup Google Photos album.

I am always surprised what events pop up in Omaha.  My hat is off to the people who book all these events.

Tuesday, December 04, 2018

Photograph: "Frosted Cafe"

This is the sign for the now defunct Bohemian Cafe in downtown Omaha. The sign faces north.  Can you guess which way the wind was blowing when it snowed on Sunday?

"Frosted Cafe"
by Bruce H.

Monday, December 03, 2018

The Christmas Season Has Begun Again.

While, for me, the holiday season starts with Thanksgiving, the season of Christmas starts with the blooming of my Christmas Cactus.  Today, a bud that I have been following for the last week, bloomed.

First bloom of the 2018 Christmas season.
This plant is a descendant of the Wife's Great-Great-Grandmother's cactus.  It is quite possible that this plant, and all the clippings I have gifted to other family members, continue a line that is over one hundred years old.

Christmas is finally here and all is good with the world.

Sunday, December 02, 2018

Book: Victor Lavalle's "The Ballad Of Black Tom"

I have only read a little Lovecraft.  Horror, on the pages of a book, doesn't do much for me.  To me horror is a visual and aural experience.  I received the e-book of Victor Lavalle's "The Ballad of Black Tom" as a free gift for subscribing to the TOR.com newsletter (as was "All The Birds In The Sky" I read in October).  This book is a take on H.P. Lovecraft's world that twists the racial inequalities of the Jazz era with the horror that is Cthulhu.

The book is a short read and, like most short stories or novellas, always feel a bit incomplete to me.  I always feel the author should have taken the time to filled out their world a little bit more and built up richer character backstories.

I can't say that I dislike this book.  For what it is, a short horror novella in the Lovecraftian tradition, it is perfectly fine and I gave it four stars out of five on Goodreads because of this.  If Goodreads let me though, I would have given it three and a half.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Wonderful, Profound, And Amazing

It's hard to believe it's been two years. Thank you for making my two Caminos so wonderful, profound, and amazing.

From Postsecret.com, 08/26/2018

Monday, November 26, 2018

Entry, Descent, And Landing ... Successful!

Congratulations to the NASA/JPL team for a successful entry, descent, and landing of the Mars InSight!

Mars InSight
Photo Credit:  NASA/JPL
I watched it live on NASA TV.  It was fun to see how happy the scientists and engineers were after each milestone was reached.

Again, good job Mars InSight team!

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Book: Becky Chambers' "Record Of A Spaceborn Few

"Record of a Spaceborn Few" is the third book of Becky Chambers' Wayfarers series.  This series is interesting in the fact that all of the books are so low key and there is very little climactic action in them.  In most cases this would be an issue but the world and characters the author is building are interesting.

The first two books were linked together by a couple characters but the third introduces a whole new list of protagonists.  These are people living on the Exodan Fleet, ships that took the survivors of Earth to the stars after an ecological collapse.

In a way, the main character of all three books is the world the author has built.  The people are just instruments to show off the Galactic Commons, the Exodan Fleet, and other facets of her universe.  Characters and action are secondary.

I like this universe and I am curious how Chambers will flesh out her world.  I gave this book four stars out of five on Goodreads and I am looking forward to the next book in the series.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Happy Turkey Day!!!

The Wife and I had a great Thanksgiving Day feast at my Moms.  Now I have a full belly and am kind of sleepy in a content sort of way.

Happy Turkey Day!!!
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!!!