Tuesday, December 30, 2008


On Monday, December 22, Claire and I headed out from Chicago toward Detroit. It was below zero as we scraped the car in Chicago, but the roads were fine as we headed out of Illinois. As soon as we hit the Michigan border, we were greeted with gusting winds that made visibility very poor as depicted in the first photo. At first it wasn't evening snowing, but was blowing the champagne poweder from the median onto the road. We planned to pull off for lunch, but just before our exit got stuck in stand-still traffic for close to an hour. Shortly thereafter, everyone was shuttled off the interstate. It turned out it was a nearly 100 car accident that caused the highway to be shut down for several miles. We took side roads for several miles before we were able to get back onto the highway, but the snow blew so badly that we were stuck in total white-outs, with Claire watching the rumble strip out the passenger window to make sure I was creeping along in the lane. We knew it was only going to get worse, and dark was about to set in, so we pulled off at the first exit we could and holed up for the night in a very strange place.

The tiny town of Watervliet (sic) had a new Ramada, which had a waterpark inside. The place was called Safari Joe's and there seemed to be no reason to have a hotel like this in such a small place. We came to realize that the place was basically a trophy room for the owner Joe, who liked to go on safari in Africa and kill exotic animals with a variety of weapons. The most unfortunate part of the event was that the hotel cost more than the room we'd shared with my brother the night before in Chicago on the Magnificent Mile. The place was completely filled, though, because it was nearly impossible to travel. The roads weren't great starting out the next day, as shown in the last photo, but once we made it past Kalamazoo, it was smooth sailing to Detroit.

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Wednesday, December 10, 2008


A friend of ours was just elected to the city council of my dear small hometown in Kentucky. It was through this that the amazingness of the oath of office for city councilmen in Kentucky was brought to my attention.

Oath of Office:

I do solemnly swear (or affirm, as the case may be) that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of this Commonwealth, and be faithful and true to the Commonwealth of Kentucky so long as I continue a citizen thereof, and that I will faithfully execute, to the best of my ability, the office of City Councilman according to law; and I do further solemnly swear (or affirm) that since the adoption of the present Constitution, I, being a citizen of this State, have not fought a duel with deadly weapons within this State nor out of it, nor have I sent or accepted a challenge to fight a duel with deadly weapons, nor have I acted as second in carrying a challenge, nor aided or assisted any person thus offending, so help me God.

Reference: Section 228 of the Constitution of Kentucky, as Ratified & Revised in 1891

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Evolution of basketball tickets

This is my third year buying student tickets for Illinois basketball with some of my friends. Student ticket seats are based on a point system, a big chunk of which comes from years of ticket purchases. Based on that, your seats will improve every year. Assembly Hall has 3 rings. Our first year, we sat in the third row from the top of section C. Last year, we were in the 8th row of section C and now we're in the first two rows of section B. Our seats this year are excellent. The photos here are pictures I took without any zoom each of the 3 years from our seats.

Aside from having good seats this year, the good news is that the Illini appear to be much better than I had expected them to be. Hopefully, that continues to be true as we start to play in the Big 10.

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