Thursday, July 31, 2014

july thirty-first

Five for July 31st:

So long, best July ever. Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would witness a STL July like the one that is ending today. The mild/cool days outnumbered the hot/humid days seemingly ten to one. Can August be as amazing?

One-dog house. Nine days of dog sitting for Mary and Keith ended last night. Henry got some good quality time with his best pal, and let loose at least a year’s worth of pent-up energy. I’m expecting him to sleep for a solid week at this point.

Tree trimming. Ameren finally came and cut down a bunch of tangled, gnarly trees and brush on the perimeter of our lawn yesterday, revealing a space we didn’t really know we had. Lisa followed it up by trimming back another tree to make way for the new deck. It’s weird to see our backyard looking so well-groomed.

Cool stuff. Leftover pizza, Hallraker Live, lunch skating, Forest Park waterfall with Jane before school, a few new Everyday Tyson posts, Sumatra coffee on autobrew, new pair of cheap skate shoes.

Comeuppance. The pathetic mayor of Sunset Hills spent all of yesterday morning deleting people's posts from his Facebook page, so I spent the morning emailing every news organization and reporter I could with the victim's story, letting them know the mayor of Sunset Hills was involved in a drunken hit and run with a cyclist and the story hadn't been broken yet. It was the least I could do.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

july thirtieth

Five for July 30th:

Old bones. After two days and 25-odd miles on the bike, topped off by a two-hour ramp session at Ramp Riders last night, I had to pass on riding today. Much as I wanted to, I just need to give my legs a day off.

Street Justice. Spent the better part of the morning contacting various news organizations about this story. This piece of shit needs to be taken to task immediately. I suggest you follow suit.

Ranchito. T-minus 1 hour till endless chips and enchiladas a’plenty.

Cool stuff. Real “Watermelon Stinger” and Assault “Smelly Curb” decks in an upcoming Josh order, Skeletor billboard, Public Domain, grande coffee, morning drums, giant pan of corn bread.

Janezilla. You haven’t seen cranky until you’ve seen my kid at 6:30 pm after only napping for an hour that day.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

july twenty-ninth

Five for July 29th:

Grapefruit beer. There is such a thing, and it is amazing. If there’s a better beverage with which to enjoy a breezy, windows-open, 72-degree July evening, I know not what it is.

Bikes revisited. Mellow traffic and zero headwinds got me from my front door to our back dock in 23 minutes. Haven’t been in my car since Sunday afternoon. Hoping for day three tomorrow.

The beard. Getting a little rough but still looking good. Trim it or just shave it off? That is the question. Leaning toward the trim. I’m liking it more than usual this time around.

Cool stuff. Possible Ramp Riders session tonight, morning toast with Jane, new posts on Everyday Tyson, the rise and fall of Pacific Ocean Park, Walking Dead season 5 trailer.

Tuesday tuneage. Miles Davis, Yardbirds, 7 Seconds, Iron Maiden, UFO, Thin Lizzy, Gorilla Biscuits, Adolescents.

Monday, July 28, 2014

july twenty-eighth

Five for July 28th:

Saddle up. A palpable 72 degrees outside this morning meant one thing: bike commuting. Great ride in, with a nice breeze and low traffic. 78 for the ride home. How is this July?

Park Avenue Coffee. Finally got a chance to check it out over the weekend. Was nice to see it packed and doing well. Stylishly repurposed building, and some of the best iced coffee I’ve had in a while. The downside was the single communal table. I don’t know how any place ever thinks that is a good idea (it’s not).

Skating. Sweltering session on Saturday morning at JB. I love that place, but the lack of shade can be a real bummer when the sun is blazing and the humidity is high. Fun time, but pretty short and sweet. Possible Tuesday night mini ramp jam in the works.

Cool stuff. New pair of Bones sunglasses, new (much-needed) pair of shorts, pancakes at Chris’, new Vision reissues with concave, rad homemade veggie sandwiches, my favorite books from childhood are also Jane's favorite books.

Make do. Lost my trusty red Hub riding bottle somewhere, so I had to improvise with some leftover party favors from Jane’s first birthday. Hey, whatever works.

Friday, July 25, 2014

july twenty-fifth

Five for July 25th:

Best summer ever. Never has there been a better July in recorded history. I think the mild to outright cool days this month have beaten out the stuffy and hot ones five to one at least. The best part? Nothing happening on the seasonal-allergy front. Not even a sniffle.

Dusk patrol. Hit JB for a sundown skate session last night with Andy and Josh. Pretty much closed the place down. No better way to ring in a Friday.

Sick baby. Janey is home with a fever today, although some baby Motrin and juice seemed to boost her spirits pretty quickly this morning- enough so that we headed outside to collaborate on some artwork and goof around before I had to leave.

Cool stuff. Payday, kebabs on the grill, new box of Gevalia K-Cups, good things happening on Delmar, sad Jack White.

Friday. This week blasted by, and weekend plans are pretty much nonexistent. Skating, hanging out with Lisa and Jane, and working on the house and yard will all be happening. Other possibilities include parks, farmer’s markets, garage sales, BMX, and whatever else.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

july twenty-fourth

Five for July 24th:

Beautiful weather. Had a bit of a return to summer this week, but this morning was mid-60’s and amazing. Passed on riding in so I could spend some time with my kid, who I feel like I’ve barely seen the last few days. Riding trikes and picking baby tomatoes is much better than biking in anyway.

Mini-rampage. Been jonesing to do some ramp skating lately. Need to get a session at Ramp Riders or Arnold park in the works, and with Geoff’s ramp almost done, some good old-fashioned backyard shredding is hopefully just around the corner.

Patio project 2014. Got a bunch of work done last night. Took a bunch of excess stuff down to the basement, started tearing apart some of the deck pieces that were ripped out, and just generally tried to get it a bit organized. It’s getting there.

Cool stuff. Homemade kettle corn, Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy, old Iron Maiden xmas cards, Game of Thrones bad lip reading, lunch with Tom, Vimeo revisited, Schmitt Stix team video.

Bumper sticker quote. "Obama is not the brown-skinned anti-war socialist who gives away free healthcare. You're thinking of Jesus."

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

july twenty-third

Five for July 23rd:

Congrats all around. To our good friends Mary and Keith, who yesterday got engaged on a beach somewhere in Bermuda, and to Lindsay and Seth who are closing on their house today. Cheers, and welcome to the fold.

Good mail day. New issue of Skidmark zine- stuffed with a bunch of stickers- and a new copy of The Skateboard Mag showed up in the mailbox. Looks like I’ve got some reading to do.

Three-wheelin’. Barely a day since our new back parking pad was poured, and I couldn’t help but stop by the store and pick up a new tricycle for Jane on the way home for her to ride on it. She doesn’t quite have the hang of it yet, but she’ll get there.

Cool stuff. Asiago bagel from Bread Co, Miles Davis on Spotify, fresh salmon, constructing bristle-block buses for Jane, free branch saw.

GTAV. After many months of on and off playing, I finally finished all the main missions and heists in GTAV last night. However, the game is hardly over- there are plenty of side missions left, to say nothing of going back and re-playing the heists from different approaches. That game rules.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

july twenty-second

Five for July 22nd:

Done deal. The cracked, jagged, weed-infested monstrosity we called a driveway for the last 2.5 years has finally been completely replaced with something that is not that. And there was much rejoicing.

Full house. Dog-sitting for the next eight days, which should be interesting. Jane spent the morning showing Coal all of her toys and clothes, and the rest of his time was spent humping (or being humped by) Henry and escaping from the yard.

Free lunch. Celebrating 15 years of being in business today with some catered lunch action. I can dig it.

Cool stuff. Restituo article, heavy GTAV progress, deadbolt fixed, free pouch of Big League Chew and giant pile of granola bars at work.

Tuesday tuneage. Van Halen, Sonic Youth, Murder City Devils, Sly & the Family Stone, Butthole Surfers.

Monday, July 21, 2014

july twenty-first

Five for July 21st:

Around the house. Driveway to be poured today following a weekend of letting the rock settle, deadbolt on our front door broke yesterday, spruced up the attic music space, still need to mow, Lisa wants chickens.

Cast-iron skillet. If you don’t have one in your kitchen, you’re missing out.

Skating. Two sessions this weekend: JB on Saturday and Morganford on Sunday. Much ripping went down- most of it by Andy and Kenny- but I got some tricks in there too.

Cool stuff. Hanging with Herm, fish & chips on the patio at Dressel’s, backyard adventures with Jane, no-handed whiplash, Hosoi knockoff, new issue of Skidmark Skatemag (plus stickers) on the way.

Adulthood rules. Some might see a 36 year old man eating off-brand Cheez-Its for breakfast and assume he had hit some sort of new low, but I can assure you all it's quite the opposite.

Friday, July 18, 2014

july eighteenth

Five for July 18th:

It’s all happening. After months of rain-outs and other delays, our old driveway was finally ripped out yesterday with the new one to be poured today. The back parking pad, even as just a smoothed-out rock pit, looks a million times better than before.

Back to school. Even though I’m almost 37 years old, haven’t had a summer vacation in almost twenty years, and will never have to set foot in another classroom as long as I live, my heart still sinks when I go to the store and see a back-to-school display.

Elizabeth Warren. Buzz is building and rumors are swirling about a possible Presidential bid. She’s already got my vote if it happens.

Cool stuff. Dennis McCoy interview, fresh box of Pike Place roast, new pair of Bones sunglasses, cool bricks unearthed, Myth Hunters, $1 toy firetruck for Jane.

Weekend action. Dinner and drinks with Herm tonight in the CWE, dialing in the new backyard, Kentucky Knife Fight at Plush, possible trip to the Zoo or Grant’s Farm, skateboarding at Morganford or JB, general hang-outtery.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

july seventeenth

Five for July 17th:

Driveway is a go. A small army’s worth of construction equipment was showing up at our house this morning to begin work on our new driveway/backyard. Couldn’t help but grin knowing that this morning was the last time I’ll ever have to back down that cracked, weed-infested slab of misery.

Rock showin’. Man or Astro-Man killed it last night, as did Wray and Sadie Ford. Insane lineup, and saw tons of old friends, some of which- much like the headlining band- I hadn’t seen in a decade or more. Even saw Kevin who I had somehow not seen since the last Blind Eyes show.

Ranchito. Hitting it up with Tom today following a weeks-long drought. Some carnitas and endless chips are in my immediate future.

Cool stuff. Thrasher renewal, Trader Joe’s K-cups, midday cruise to Starbucks for iced coffee on the patio, July deck a day, beard is still looking good, Lone Star.

Weird Al. His parodies are significantly less funny when you've never even heard of- much less heard- the song he's parodying. Still, it’s cool that people are raving about Weird Al in 2014.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

july sixteenth

Five for July 16th:

Hill sesh. Met up with Andy, Bryan and Josh for an old-school skate jam on the Hill yesterday. Sometimes a wall ride, slider bar, a couple of jump ramps and some flat ground are all you need for a good time.

Man or Astro-Man? I used to see them all the time back in the day, but it’s probably been a decade or more since the last show I caught. Remedying that tonight at the Firebird, currently listening to Your Weight on the Moon to stoke the fire.

Janeyisms. This morning, Jane told me that she dreamed about ice cream last night and wanted noodles for breakfast. She dropped some awesome science on the drive in as well, more than I can recount here.

Cool stuff. Two-dollar Tuesdays, Guitarist plays along to sobbing Japanese politician, Santa Cruz Strange Notes volume 1 (1989?), bike ride photo-op, vanilla ice cream with honey and cinnamon.

Showering. There’s a level of sweat and grime you collect on yourself following a 12-mile bike ride, walk to dinner, and a two-hour skate session that really can’t be explained, which makes the inevitable shower following it all the sweetest thing ever.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

july fifteenth

Five for July 15th:

Bikes. In the entire time I’ve been riding my bike to work, never have I encountered a mid-July morning like this one. Almost uncomfortably cool until I got the blood flowing a bit. High of 75 today- go out and enjoy it.

Bearded up. Haven’t shaved for a week and a half or so and am kinda digging it. I’m not much of a beard guy- the initial itchiness drives me crazy, and I’m way too lazy to keep a beard groomed, so once it gets past a certain point I usually just shave it off. But it looks good now.

Tuesday evening. Ride home, change, dinner at SoHa with Lisa and Jane, old school skate sesh on the Hill with Andy and Bryan.

Cool stuff. Goofing off with Jane, Clifton Heights flyer patrol, work snack restock, turning off the AC, Aldi key lime yogurt.

Tuesday tuneage. Aerosmith, fIREHOSE, Ramones, Black Sabbath, Dead Milkmen, Gang of Four, Minutemen.

Monday, July 14, 2014

july fourteenth

Five for July 14th:

The driveway project. Our contractor called yesterday to let us know that ground will officially be broken this week on our much-needed new driveway. Beyond stoked to get this thing underway, with the new deck to follow.

Unseasonable. I don’t remember the last time we had anything even approaching a 75-degree day in July, but mid 70’s will be the norm this week. Count me in.

Skating. Planned Sunday sesh at Morganford had to be cancelled due to some on-site construction, so we shot down to JB for a quick one with Josh and a few others, and much raging occurred. Even Janey got in on the action.

Cool stuff. Real “Wrecking Crew” deck from Andy, building forts with Jane, movie night, Schlafly IPA, dead tree removed from the front yard, cucumber fizz, Jim Phillips interview.

RIP Tommy Ramone. How is it possible that every single member of the original Ramones is dead, and besides Brian Jones, every single member of the original Rolling Stones is still alive? It boggles the mind.

Friday, July 11, 2014

july eleventh

Five for July 11th:

Evening sesh. On a whim, hit up Andy last night and we threw together a quick hour-long sundown session at JB. Perfect cool temperatures and good times. The new Mini-Logo wheel/bearing combo killed it. Why get anything else?

Breakfast babes. Impromptu trip to Einstein’s this morning for bagels with Lisa and Jane. No better way to kick off the last day of the workweek. The blueberry bagel/strawberry cream cheese combo gets a big thumbs-up from my daughter.

Treasure hunting. Found a stash of forgotten CDs in the basement, including a 30 song Rocco Records compilation, Gwar’s This Toilet Earth, some No Means No I don’t even remember owning, and the full two-track J&H productions recording in all of its glory.

Cool stuff. Payday, picking baby tomatoes from the backyard garden, Jeff Grosso “Toybox” t-shirts, Breeders at Off Broadway in September, ultrajamz playlist, Snarf’s with Tom for lunch.

Weekend action. This week absolutely flew by. I seriously can’t believe today is Friday already. Loose plans include checking out the Clifton Heights neighborhood garage sale, skateboarding with friends, mowing the lawn, and the toy show with Greg followed by some potential flatland riding. The rest remains to be seen.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

july tenth

Five for July 10th:

Recycling. After three consecutive weeks of forgetting to take the recycling to the curb and our bin reaching maximum capacity and then some, I finally made it happen this morning. I don’t know why I can never remember to do that.

Mom update. The knee replacement surgery went as good as could have been expected, and rehab starts today. The certainly don’t waste any time getting you back on your feet after those things.

Free food. Just found out we’re getting BBQ brought in from Vernon’s today for Mark’s birthday, on top of two giant boxes of donuts that were delivered for the morning meeting. That this all happened on a day where I brought no lunch and had a piece of wheat toast for breakfast is just a lovely coincidence.

Cool stuff. Thee Fine Lines at the Engine Room tonight, Jane’s best summer ever, another 80-degree week coming up, Agenda show photos on Instagram, tomorrow is Friday.

Day skating. Going out and killing 20 minutes or so with some midday skating is awesome. Finding tons of fun out-of-the-way spots all over the Loop from these little back-alley missions, including waxed curbs and mellow banks.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

july ninth

Five for July 9th:

Bionic woman. My mom is going in for knee replacement surgery today. They can rebuild her: they have the technology. In all seriousness though, it’s going to be a great thing in the long run and will make her life much easier. Happy she’s getting it done.

Powell-Peralta. The new summer Skateone catalog came out this week, and two of my favorite decks ever are finally being reissued (again) in August- the Per Welinder “Nordic Skull” and the Ray Barbee “Ragdoll”. Both are on the must-have list.

Neighborhood activism. Great turnout last night for the Friends of Clifton Park social hour at SoHa. Tons of new faces, good food, cheap drinks, and Jane had a blast. Next event is movie night in the park on 8/2. Be there.

Cool stuff. Forgotten Planet series on Netflix, Suicidal Tendencies “possessed to skate” reissues, 2 Cardinals walk-off homers in as many nights, having deodorant at work, picking flowers for Jane, new hat.

World Cup. I don’t care about soccer at all- and never have- but seeing some of the video of Germany’s absolute demolition of Brazil yesterday was riveting even for a non-fan.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

july eighth

Five for July 8th:

Bed hog 5000. I don’t know how it’s possible for an 18 lb. schnoodle to take up every inch of available space on a king-size bed, but Henry has somehow figured it out.

FOCP social hour. Hanging out tonight at SoHa for a bit with Lisa and the Friends of Clifton Park crew. Super proud of Lisa for making this thing happen. Come hang out- good times guaranteed.

Safety first. Concerned for his well-being with a thunderstorm looming, Jane insisted we bring the little $2 garden gnome that lives in our front yard flower bed inside yesterday evening. David spent the night on the dining room table and was returned to his normal outdoor spot immediately following breakfast, none the worse for wear.

Cool stuff. April/May eBay watch, nicoise salad, lunch cruising, Gregg Bissonette’s new clinic kit on the floor in my office, Fair Trade Columbian.

Tuesday tuneage. Minor Threat, Bad Brains, Redd Kross, Jawbreaker, Samiam, Sonic Youth, My Bloody Valentine.

Monday, July 7, 2014

july seventh

Five for July 7th:

Fourth of July. We ended up being able to see the Fair St. Louis fireworks in Forest Park perfectly from our front yard. Tons of neighbors, family and friends wound up joining us for the festivities, and Jane luckily slept right through all of the pandemonium like a champ.

Shredding. Finally got a chance to check out the Morganford skatepark on Friday morning, and it was killer. Super smooth, and way more mellow than Kingshighway. Lots of stuff to hit with some good lines. JB for a Saturday sesh with Andy and crew.

Bob Dylan. 149 previously unknown Bob Dylan acetates were recently discovered in a New York closet. I’m not the world’s biggest Dylan fan, but nonetheless I absolutely love hearing about stuff like this.

Cool stuff. New issue of Transworld Skateboarding, celebratory donuts, Jane on the farm, Hell Night and White Reaper at Firebird, family trip to Laumeier sculpture park, new set of Mini-Logo bearings and 54/101 wheels, psycho tail drop, the Cosmic Collider.

This week. Busy one. Besides the normal stuff, there’s the Friends of Clifton Park happy hour at SoHa, mom’s knee surgery, Thee Fine Lines at the Engine Room, a Toy Show, and at least one evening skate trip.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

july third

Five for July 3rd:

Day 2. Lisa was cool enough to take Jane to school today so I could take advantage of another unseasonably beautiful day for bike commuting, which will also allow me to quickly bypass what will undoubtedly be insane Fair St. Louis traffic on the way home.

4th of July. Pros: no work, should be able to see the fireworks from our front yard. Cons: probably won’t be able to go north of 44 on Hampton for the next three days and will likely have to encounter all manner of idiot parking in our neighborhood.

Leftovers. We’re great at saving them, but most of the time we’re terrible at actually eating them and after a week or so it all gets dumped in the trash. Not the case last night, where we feasted on all manner of cold and microwaved goodness. Probably should do that more often.

Cool stuff. Cheese Danish at work, Fox News doesn’t get it, Tommy Guerrero From the Soil to the Soul, Jane at the Zoo, Grabke reissue on order, new co2 cartridge for the Sodastream.

Long weekend. Three-day weekend for me, four-day weekend for Lisa. Not much on deck except for hanging out with friends and family, working on stuff around the house and hopefully getting in a couple of sessions at JB. Shoot off some bottle rockets for me.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

july second

Five for July 2nd:

July. So far, I’m impressed. Sunny skies and 70 degrees with no humidity this time of year is pretty much unheard of, and it should retain through the long weekend. Go enjoy it.

Nipped in the bud. Started feeling a bit sick yesterday afternoon, but some good evening rest coupled with a generous dose of Cold-eze and Nyquil seems to have done the trick.

Bike commuting. If you don’t ride your bike when it’s like this outside, you don’t like riding your bike. No-brainer ride in this morning, and the ride home is looking to be just as nice.

Cool stuff. New issue of Thrasher, Lisa’s homemade kettle corn, Jason Adams 7 Seconds at Svitak’s, Coober Pedy, bathroom re-caulk, custom old school Dogtown fade decks, Airborne movie night.

Wednesday work tunes. New Bomb Turks, Exodus, Tom Petty, Husker Du, Mercyful Fate, Ray Barbee Band.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

july first

Five for July 1st:

Snooze machine. Jane was crashed out in her crib until 7:45 this morning, which is literally the latest she has ever slept that I can remember. We were worried she was getting sick, but she woke up in her normal upbeat, goofy spirit.

July deck a day. I’ll be posting a different deck from my nerdy and expansive skateboard collection on Instagram every day in July. If you’re interested, check it out. Kicked it off on a pretty obscure and morbid note, but what’re you gonna do.

Hitting the gym. A couple of miles on the treadmill and a couple of miles on the exercise bike made for a good 45 minutes or so yesterday evening.

Cool stuff. Tilts on Redeye, margarita Monday, hanging out with Doc, Redd Kross on Spotify, No New Friends STL skate video, Aldi Red Bull knockoff, learning to balance.

Crossover universe. I just want to see ONE episode of Sons of Anarchy where Katey Sagal plays Gemma Teller in full Peg Bundy regalia. Is that too much to ask?