New Grill! I’m an “egg”head!

After reading several reviews on the web, and getting inspired by a [co-worker](http://www.seanalexander.com/2006/09/05/LaborDayBBQMeetsTechWizardry.aspx), I decided to buy a new grill. And I’ve eschewed the propane tank forever.

I bought a [Big Green Egg](http://www.biggreenegg.com/) from [Thompson’s Hearth & Home](http://www.thompsonshearth.com/bbq.htm) in Issaquah. This thing is a beast! Tips the scales at over 140 pounds, and I can’t wait to get it fired up… Which, will sadly have to wait until next weekend at the earliest. Stupid [wisdom teeth](http://www.marius.org/2007/05/09/a_long_day.php).

At any rate, I outfitted my large green egg with a [BBQ Guru](http://www.thebbqguru.com/) [Competitor](http://www.thebbqguru.com/bbqProductDetail.cfm?prodID=229) kit, complete with a 10CFM blower; and a few other [accessories](http://www.biggreenegg.com/bgeacc.htm): egg nest and egg mate.

The guys at [Thompson’s](http://www.thompsonshearth.com/) were awesome: Les helped me out the day of my purchase (his job was easy — I had done my research), and he noticed my Texas car dealership sticker on the back of the Murano. He asked where in Texas we were from, and, as it turns out, he also went to [Texas A&M](http://www.tamu.edu/). While we loaded up the boxes, we talked about things in Aggieland, food that we miss, and local sites in Bryan/College Station. He threw in (as standard fare) a 20 pound bag of charcoal and some BBQ seasoning, and as we were leaving, threw in another set (“I’ve gotta take care of my fellow College Station people”).

We got home a few hours later, and I realized that we forgot to load the egg nest into the car. I checked their website today, and they’re closed on Sundays, so I figured I’d call and leave a message. The owner ends up answering the phone (I think they forward the phone), and I explain the situation to him and that I’ll come by on Monday to pick it up. He says that he’ll be in Issaquah for a bit, and can go into the store and leave the missing box out in the back of the store. Talk about awesome service.

Ok, back to reading more about the grill.

Big Changes in the Big 12?

Browsing CNN last night led me to this article about the Arkansas coach (whose name is Houston Nutt; insert humor here) forcing his players to wear pink when they goofed-off. The coaching team stopped this after people made some claims that the breast cancer support would be offended by this. Up to this point, the article is understandable. The article closes by stating that the coach is considering making players wear burnt orange as punishment in the future, since burnt orange is the color of Arkansas' rival: the University of Texas.

Wait a minute here; since when did UT's rival become Arkansas? What about Texas A&M or Oklahoma?!

some people are dumb, others are brilliant

Read first about the dumb guy who wrote into the university newspaper. I don't know why our TAMU logo only belongs on maroon. Apparently, Danny doesn't either. Here's his response:

From: Ledbetter, Daniel

Sent: Tuesday, April 13, 2004 2:39 PM

To: 'mailcall@thebattalion.net'

Subject: Repsonse: A&M logo belongs on maroon only

Dear Editor,

I am writing in response to Charles Holland's mail call letter titled “A&M logo belongs on maroon only.”

Great idea Charles. Let's require everyone to wear a certain color on campus. Real original idea. Where did you get this from the Nazis, or maybe the communists? They use to make people wear certain colors to distinguish each other. Communists in red and Nazis in swastikas. If we have those that are real Aggies wear maroon, then we can persecute those that are not real Aggies.

Honestly, Charles, you can't make people wear a certain color and if people want to buy an Aggie shirt that is booger green that is their right. Charles, right now I am wearing pink capri pants that have Texas A&M all over them and you can't do anything about it.

Daniel Ledbetter

Class of 2000

Thank you for that bit of insight, Danny (and Paula, who apparently helped!)!

nasa responds (not directly, but, well)

Back in February I posted my nasa deep thought about why they didn't put blowers/wipers on the mars rovers… I got to ask one of the NASA scientists during a talk recently at Texas A&M, and then this morning I pull up CNN. There's an article about the rovers getting their lives extended. Then there it is, in paragraph 6:

Steve Squyres, the Mars rovers principal investigator, said the rovers' designers deemed the additional weight of adding wipers or blowers to the solar panels was not worthwhile. Instead they increased the size of the panels to maximize the power input.

the sweet smell of… dumpsters?

There's really nothing better than the weather has been the last few days. Mid-70's, not a cloud in the sky, a little breeze. So, everyone wanders around campus a little slower than usual because everyone wants to enjoy the wonderful weather.

So, like everyone else, I'm walking across campus. There's nothing like walking behind someone that's wearing perfume that smells nice… It adds to the day. Then, fate intervenes. The wind changes a little bit, and right as you're inhaling some good smelling perfume, it changes to the odor of a dumpster. Argh.

Hooray for Ring Day!

Well, yesterday was Aggie Ring Day, and I finally got my ring. Yes, it says Class of 2002. Yes, I'm old. No, I don't care that I'm old. I'm told that I am the cranky old guy on the street. To quote Jeff, I could often be found yelling “You kids get off my lawn!”.

Anyway, so I have my ring. Should have pictures of the event online in the gallery tonight. I'll update this post when I do.

Oh, also, while I'm sitting out at the Assocation of Former Students (they're the people who hand out rings — I'm not a former student yet) I look over to the east west and see a couple of tanks and APCs in the field. I scuttled over there with the camera too, and got some more really random pictures.

Oh! Another rant! The “official” photographers at Ring Day… I asked one of the workers what kind of cameras they were using (since, well, I am a photo nerd). She replies “Digital”. Hrm. She obviously didn’t understand the question. Looking back it looks as if they were “Kodak DCS3200”:http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/specs/Kodak/kodak_dc3200.asp cameras. Hooray for using 1 megapixel cameras! I found the head photographer inside using a “Fuji Finepix S1 Pro”:http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/specs/Fujifilm/fuji_s1.asp to take my picture. I know he’s probably got it set on 1MP mode, but at least my picture was taken with a decent camera. It’s the little things in life I enjoy. 🙂

*UPDATE*: I’ve finally got the pictures posted “here”:http://www.marius.org/gallery/ringday/.

thunderbirds

Well, as I mentioned the other day, the USAF Thunderbirds came to TAMU today. The show was pretty awesome. I took pictures of them a couple times: coming in and landing, the practice session, the Thunderbirds parked at night, and the actual show.

I think the practice session was a little better than the actual performance — the weather was completely clear during practice but we had low cloud cover during the actual performance. (The clouds were probably around 1000' AGL, while the hard deck for the flight was just 150' AGL. It was still a good show though — I hadn't seen the Thunderbirds before, but had seen the Blue Angels before at the Wings Over Houston airshow several years ago. I can't really compare them since I didn't get to see the Thunderbirds do most of their high-altitude tricks, but it's not every day an acrobatic group comes to TAMU.

so that was fun

Well, that was fun.. Or not. For those of you not in the B/CS area, we just went through a 5 hour power outage. Not just a neighborhood outage, but both cities, as well as Texas A&M. The outage reportedly went all the way to Waco, and east to the Texas/Louisiana border. Crazy stuff. Local news has info about it, as well as more regional coverage. They're now in the process of turning things back up. Yay for having the power back on so I can get my Internet fix.