07 April 2013
Division II National Championship today! The first in our schools' history! We gathered with our local college pals and their families at the Swans' house to cheer them on (and eat for hours). The first half was grim, but the Panthers came alive in the second and pulled off a 74-73 win in the last few seconds of the game against Metro State from Denver, Colorado, a school of 24,000 students. You should have seen all of us old people jumping up and down in that living room. I was so happy to see one of my favorite former students, #33 Alex Hall, win the game for his team and be awarded MVP. He will graduate from DU in a few weeks. Hooray! Go Panthers!
20 March 2013
I spent a good part of our last day in Mexico curled up in one of these cozy beach beds listening to the waves crash in front of me while I read an entire book--The Fault in Our Stars by John Green--in one sitting. I enjoyed the book very much and have since moved on to another of Green's called Looking for Alaska. One passage in particular stuck with me as I read there in front of such a vast expanse of sky and water, as the sun sank to my right on the beach empty except for me...
"So everything happens for a reason and we'll all go live in the clouds and play harps and live in mansions?"
Dad smiled. He put a big arm around me and pulled me to him, kissing the side of my head. "I don't know what I believe, Hazel. I thought being an adult meant knowing what you believe but that has not been my experience."
"Yeah," I said. "Okay."
He told me again that he was sorry about Gus, and then we went back to watching the show, and the people picked a house, and Dad still had his arm around me, and I was kinda starting to fall asleep, but I didn't want to go to bed, and then Dad said, "You know what I believe? I remember in college I was taking this math class, this really great math class taught by this tiny old woman. She was talking about fast Fourier transforms and she stopped midsentence and said, 'Sometimes it seems the universe wants to be noticed.'
"That's what I believe. I believe the universe wants to be noticed. I think the universe is improbably biased toward consciousness, that it rewards intelligence in part because the universe enjoys its elegance being observed. And who am I, living in the middle of history, to tell the universe that it--or my observation of it--is temporary?"
"You are fairly smart," I said after a while.
"You are fairly good at compliments," he answered.
17 March 2013
|Mr. and Mrs. Tyson and Lindsay Johns|
"It's a beautiful night...we're looking for something dumb to do--
Hey baby, I think I'm gonna marry you..."
21 February 2013
We took a half-day trip out to see the giant Redwoods at Muir Woods, about 45 minutes outside the city. It was a gray, damp day, but we were amazed by the huge trees in these woods. Our informative (and poetic) tour bus driver said these 800 to 1200 year old trees were smaller than the giants about 5 hours farther north, some of which are upwards of 2000 years old. One area called Cathedral Grove is meant to encourage silent contemplation--signs beckoned, "Enter Quietly"--but you might be surprised at just how important many people felt their banal conversations were despite such. On the way back we passed through the charming town of Sausalito and got to stop for photos near the Golden Gate Bridge, which we ended up going over several times during our stay in San Fransisco. As we were walking back towards the visitors center, I told Ryan we just had to get out and do more things like this. Totally worth the expense. Just need our little bubby with us next time...
10 February 2013
Sadly, they didn't win the Super Bowl, but the Niners sure were fun to watch this season. Ryan had always dreamed of seeing his beloved team play at Candlestick, so we went to San Fransisco over Christmas break to see them there before they move to their new stadium in Santa Clara. We rode on a stadium express city bus packed with Niners fans to get there--I thought Ryan was going to cry. He's loved the 49ers since he was 11 years old. Finally among his people...
We had tickets to a VIP tailgate party before and got to our seats (leather box seats, front row, corner of end zone!) to watch warmups. There's Colin. Ryan's allegiance (and I suppose mine) is to #11 Alex Smith, but Kaep is a dynamic quarterback, and I love his story. And the fact that he has a 100 pound pet tortoise. Adorable.
|Kickoff Team dances|
|Frank Gore behind CK|
|in his happy place|
|Alex is in!|
|Final Score: SF 27 AZ 13|
|two of our faves, Moss and Larry Fitzgerald of the Arizona Cardinals|
|Future Kansas City Chief???|
A fine day at the ballpark...and another check on Ryan's bucket list...Later that evening as we were walking into a Walgreen's near our hotel, still in our game gear, Ryan stopped to ask a homeless man crouched out front what we could get him from the store. He was surprised at first, but listed a few things including grape juice, potato chips and something else I didn't catch. Ryan told him we'd get the juice and chips. Inside the store, we gathered those and Ryan said the other thing the man had wanted was a tuna fish sandwich so we got one of those, too. When Ryan handed the man all three, he happily shouted with a pump of his fist, "You GOT the SANDwich!" As we walked away from him, the man called after us, "God bless and go Niners!" Indeed.