My parents used to take my brother and I camping to Allegany State Park in New York seemingly every year when we were kids. I always liked it because it had interesting woods to explore compared to any of the Ohio parks we'd visit. It had history, lots of creeks, critters and great cycling opportunities.
The last time I had been there was 1992, just after my freshman year of college. Stephanie has been begging me to go camping, which I've somewhat resisted because I'm not a big fan of tent camping, so I figured it might be pretty cool to go to the park. This way she gets to do something she has wanted to do for awhile, I get to visit a place I used to love for the first time as an adult, and on top of that we get to spend some quality time together.
It was really pretty cool. The park really hasn't changed that much in the last decade. It's still beautiful and popular as ever. We didn't do a lot while we were there, but Steph got enough of a feel for the park to know she'd like to go back.
While there we did a GeoCache, where you get the coordinates of a secret location from the Web site, then head there with your GPS receiver and find the loot. Generally there's little stuff in there, and you take some stuff and leave new stuff. With my expert navigational skills (I was nearly standing on it when I got the right coordinates but didn't see it) we scored a little spring-loaded clip and a cheap little pocket knife (which came in handy for opening the vacuum packed steaks we brought). We declined taking the nose flute.
Overall it was a nice little escape. and I can't wait to do it again. I posted just a handful of photos.
Last weekend was Mike Freeze's wedding. Didn't drink quite as much but still felt like shit the next day. Mike looked great in his white tux (a look only a black man can pull off, I'm convinced) and Candy was also divine. Kind of a short reception, but there were some dancing hoochies, which always makes for a good time.
Last night I went to Cedar Point for a few hours, the first time I've been to any amusement park in nearly two months. Some enthusiast I am! In all seriousness we've just been too busy or tired of being busy to really go. Coupled with the busy season, I've been in no hurry. Stephanie chilled at home for the evening.
This weekend we're camping at Allegany State Park in southwest New York. It was my favorite place to go as a kid, and I was shocked to realize it has now been ten years since the last time I was there (summer following my freshman year of college). Where does the time go?
In any case, this will be fun because it's a special place to me, and Steph has been dying to go camping (which I've been somewhat resistant to because I don't really like tent camping). I'm really looking forward to it though, and plan to spend as much of it chilling as possible.
I'm starting to get wedding-ed out. Our friends Kristin and Matt (she was one of Stephanie's college roommates) got hitched last Saturday at this really cool outdoor ceremony. Probably around a hundred people there total, out in the middle of nowhere (Dover, Ohio) in front of an old mansion. It was a nice ceremony and a nice little reception, even if none of the young people would come talk to us (bastards).
From the wedding we traveled north on up to Canton for the great Mike Freeze bacholor party. Mike and I worked together at Penton Media for about a year and a half before I left and he got laid-off. Mike is like my very own token black guy who keeps me up on ebonics and such.
What floors me about Mike is that his outlook on the world is so damn cool. He has done quite a bit and seen many things in his life already. He likes thongs (on women). He thinks that my coaster obsession is actually cool and not geeky. He hates stupid people as much as I do. He's a good friend.
Saturday he'll marry Candy (I know... Candy Freeze!) and he'll be part of the couples club. In attendance will be many people from the old Penton crew. Should be a good time.
I had lunch today with a friend of mine who has his own Web development shop. Aside from the fact that we both realized working for other people sucks, we were talking a bit about success and being happy.
The more I got to thinking about it, the more I realized that there isn't really a standard or metric out there to draw any conclusions about what success is. It's even more complicated by the fact that those of us who drive to be successful are often our harshest critics and not able to rest on the point we're at.
So despite all of this ambiguity, I have decided there are a few things that success means to me. They are:
So looking at that list, I'd say I'm pretty successful in all but the "like what you do" category. I'll have to work on that.
You know, I was just thinking about how different my coaster sites would be if I really let it all hang out. There would be four letter words everywhere, and they'd be spelled correctly, too.
Lately there have been so many moronic illiterate kids (or perhaps adults) posting on the sites I could scream. They can't spell, they post the same stupid tired shit... it's like I'm reading rec.roller-coaster or something.
(Disclaimer: Not all kids are this way... just the stupid ones!)
For all of the blessings the Internet has granted us (like my career), it sure has its drawbacks as well. The first is that some of these little bastards don't realize or care that there are real humans interacting out there. They lack people skills and it carries over into real life. The second is that we're breeding a nation of fat slob kids who sit around in front of the box all day because their parents won't boot their ass outside for some exercise. I was a teenage geek too with my Apple II+, but at least I got out and shot some hoops and played a little volleyball now and then. Hell, I even did 100-mile organized bike rides.
Anyway, the moderators and I seem to be keeping up with the crap and getting rid of it post-haste, because there really are a lot of great conversations going on. That's good because I need the distraction from work and such.