You know, I'm not a NASCAR fan, but I have to admit, the last 15 laps of the Cracker Barrel 500 on Sunday were incredibly exciting. Of course, you only get close races at the end this way because of all the yellows. But what a 15 lap race! It was non-restrictor plate racing, which helped also. It was a nail-biter up until the last millisecond. Jeff Gordon was out there in 5th place trailing the pack. Somehow you just knew... It was amazing, he threaded his way through each of the cars to take 4th, 3rd, and then 2nd. Some rookie named Harvick was in first with only 2 laps left and had at least 5 car lengths on Jeff. Somehow you just knew... Jeff started closing, taking the outside in order to slingshot the car into a passing lane while Harvick took the far inside. It was quite a demonstration of raw skill and mastery of the machine. On the last turn, Jeff made his move and closed unbelievably quickly. Woah! He got what he wanted and powered the car into position... but it was not to be. Harvick crossed the finish line first... by an estimated 2.5 inches, that is. Give Jeff another 75 feet and he would have won. By the way, Harvick's car? The same car (well, mostly) Dale Earnhardt died in. Jeff lost, but after four races he's #1 in the season rankings in points.
Later that night, it was time for the beginning of World Superbike competition. We warmed up by watching the AMA (US) Superbike opener. And then it was time. It was a fun set of races to watch (WSBK is a two race format). My guy, as you'll remember, is Troy Corser. Well, Corser absolutely DOMINATED both races. He had an 8 second lead at one point in one of the races and a 6 second lead in the other. Behind him, Edwards, Bayliss, and Bostrom were making it fun to watch but the day belonged to Troy. It wasn't in doubt after the first lap. Best bike, best rider. Here is a pic. This is during the first race when the two Aprilias were running first and second for a lap or two. Soon Troy, #3, took over and left everyone behind.
The twins dominate over the fours. And they sound so great. They sound like they're an octave lower than the fours. The fours are guitars, the twins are well-played basses.
How about that ZOOMZOOMZOOM commercial for the Miata? Does that not look like phenomenal fun?? Tossing a nimble little sports car around the salt flats!
I got a new keyboard. It's duo's old one. I had to move the keypad's zero to the left shift position, and it's kind of a lame, heavy keyboard, but the spacebar works.
I hardly watch TV. When I'm at home or at friends' places. At my father's, I watch too much. If I had his cable here in my place TechTV, SpeedVision, and the Sci-Fi Channel would be on constantly in rotation. Between the three there's always something to sit down and watch. It's a good thing that you can't get those stations in Denton.
A Pennsylvania school district, in the wake of last week's shootings, has banned cars and bookbags. That's right, you can no longer drive to school and park your car on campus, and you can no longer carry your stuff in a backpack or bag. Does this irk anyone else as much as it does me? Knee-jerk reactionaries...
I got my Motorcycle Accessory Warehouse catalog (not the big one, they have over a million products for sale), and picked out my jacket, helmet, and gloves. My riding boots are fine and my leather shoes will do fine during commuting I guess. I'm actually buying two sets of gloves, one pair for cold weather, rain, and aggressive riding, and one for the summer. Actually, I'm split on the jacket between this and this. They both come with removable back, shoulder, and elbow armor and a removable winter liner. It's leather vs. textile.
3DMark2001 is out! It's an enormous download, but I'll run it and get back to you in a few days. I've seen the pictures and it simultaneously looks like a vast improvement over last year (which was already some of the best 3D ever seen on consumer hardware) and something you really need a Geforce 3 to appreciate.
I have seen the first 8 X-Box games. Screenshots, anyway. As expected, they don't even approach the Geforce 3. I notice poor resolution and a lack of anti-aliased pixels. Better than PS2? Maybe, but not by alot. Maybe by as much as the PS2 is an improvement over DC. I think we've definitely gotten to the point where our 3D action platformers look as good as or better than our 2D action platformers, only they're in 3D. Witness this and this.
Still no word on how much the Stealth will cost me. Gee, can't stand the suspense. Wow, it's like Christmas.
Oh, so this job. Today: I got there at 3:30. I watched Jeopardy. At 4:00 I changed the channel to the news. I read my magazine. At 4:45 I had a drop off. I drove a guy out to Lewisville. Nice guy, told me to tell the boss he enjoyed the ride and I'm underpaid. On the way back I opened the windows and popped in a tape I had brought. Cruised around in someone else's vehicle, listening to music, feeling the breeze, and getting paid. Got back at 5:30. Watched the Simpsons. Read some of my book. Chatted with some people. Got a free Sprite. Signed up for the free Six Flags trip sponsored by Mr. Wood. Watched the news. Watched Seinfeld. Read some more. Called a friend. Stretched. Then I went home. AND, get this, Monday I had two pickups, and that's a busy day. Average is between zero and one per 3:30-7:15 shift. And they don't mind what I do as long as I stick around. And there's a TV right there. I might try and borrow the currently unused laptop. I could jump into Baldur's Gate II and get paid for it!!
Believe it or not, there is a TV show called "Pop Stars". The focus of it is a national model search whereby the producers wish to find the five young ladies photogenic enough to form a new pop group. This has really been a bad couple of years for TV, hasn't it?
It looks like the tax cuts won't be retroactive. My father thinks that will be one of the concessions made to get the bill passed. Too bad, a retroactive tax cut would be worth over $10,000 to my father. On a positive note, he was able to get out of jury duty yesterday. Just think, three weeks of jury duty would cost tens of thousands of dollars. Lucky they make it relatively easy to avoid. US Juries need to become extinct. There are several European nations that have the right idea: professional juries.
M was not half-bad at cooking. She didn't have a huge repertoire, but she usually whipped up tasty dinners. One dinner in particular was excellent: hamburger steak. That's what she called it. It was ground chuck (not ground beef) with garlic kneaded into it, fried, then baked on low for a while with mushrooms and gravy. Served with Stove Top stuffing. It was damn damn good. And she always made enough for us to fill up. It's too bad she was two different people (dammit, I shouldn't have put on Dulcinea right now). Anyways, I decided to try my hand at it. I'm almost there. I think I got the wrong mushrooms and I didn't cook it long enough/low enough. Also, I didn't do the garlic thing. My stuffing prep sucks too. But it was still good.
Fragball League starts up over Spring Break. Oh yah, Spring Break is next week. I'm going to go down to South Padre Island and drink so much I vomit up everything every morning and contract at least two venereal diseases and maybe father a child or two... No, not really. If I had money I'd probably be taking a week off and touring the south for a few days on my bike. I can't think of anything special I'll be doing. Reading, UTing, listening, shooting baskets, whatever. Remember, my bike still has some problems which render it unusable right now.
Bike pic of the day is this Vino popping a wheelie. They did a few simple mods to a stock Vino and got it to go 46 mph and wheelie... Honestly, that wouldn't be such a bad little runabout. Could get me to the food store and to school as well as most of my town.
To see what my bike looked like brand new and in snow, click here.