Gooooooal!

Gooooooal

What you’re looking at is a goal. And not just any goal, but a goal that proved to be elusive when we most needed it.

I recently got together a group of guys to start a team in an arena soccer league. The league has it matches on a smaller than normal field — about a quarter of the size of regulation. The field is surrounded by a wall that is in play. Sort of like hockey, but not. There are only 4 players from each team on the field at once without a mandatory goalie.

On such a small field, the action is super quick and non-stop. Transitioning from offense to defense needs to happen in a split second or you risk giving up an easy goal.

With our team members in place and an appropriate team name created, Rice and Beans, we were ready to storm the league.

After making it through the season relatively unscathed, we ran through the competition in the playoffs and right into the Championship game.

Unfortunately, we were not victorious despite our best efforts.

I’m very proud of what we were able to accomplish as a 1st year team. Nobody expected us to make it to the Final game.

So what’s next for team Rice and Beans?

We’re moving up to the regulation arena soccer field where it becomes 6 on 6 and the competition surely gets tougher on a much larger field. It should be another hell of a season.

Look Out Below

Look Out Below

400 feet up in the air in a balloon that’s tethered to the ground. On a clear day, you can see  Catalina Island and up along the coast.

This is the Great Park Balloon in the Orange County Great Park.

While being secured to the ground with the tether may lessen the riskiness of the ride, that didn’t make it any less of an adventure for Zella. Her emotions ranged from sheer elation to arm-shaking fright. At times she was silent and frozen, and then she would transition to non-stop oohing and aahing and gazing out across the ground below.

Getting on the balloon ride was a huge leap of faith for Zella.

Next: Spitting from the edge of the ride.

103

103

- 103 floors
– 1,353 feet above ground
– 70 second elevator ride
– 1.5 million tourists visit per year
– The highest observation deck in the United States

These describe the Skydeck of the Sears Tower (Willis Tower for the new kids on the block).

- 2 hours
– 5 visitors
– Giordano’s catered pizza dinner
– An amazingly clear Chicago night

These describe our truly unique Skydeck experience. We had the entire observation deck to our ourselves, with an endless view of the city lights. Easily stretching out to the neighboring states.

To experience the glass balcony cubes, AKA The Ledge, without any other people to distract us was awesome. These cubes are literally hanging off the side of the building. Stepping into the cube, there is ultimately only a few inches of glass between you and a freefall 103 floors down.

Amazing.

Missing Art

Missing Art

This art confuses me in so many ways.

What am I missing here?

I think this lady is equally confused.


Twenty Plaster Surrogates, by Allen McCollum — at the High Museum in Atlanta.

Touchdown!

Touchdown!

And that’s how you end a week-long guys trip to Chicago.

Bears vs Packers.

The most storied rivalry in the NFL.

This was the 189th head-to-head meeting and there was no lack of fan passion from either side. From cheeseheads to cheese graters — there was every type of showmanship to witness.

And to make this game memorable?

It was just the 2nd NFL game to ever be played without a punt from either team.

Get on the L

Get on the L

There’s so much to love about Chicago.

And if there is anything to really appreciate, it is the accessibility of everything.

Walking is easy because of the logical layout of the streets and the flatness of the land.

There are plenty of taxis and buses.

Bike sharing services on practically every block.

And, of course, the L trains.

Red, Blue, Brown, Green, Orange, Purple, Pink, Yellow — there’s a train ready to take you.

Truly a planes, trains, and automobiles town.

Wrigley Field

Wrigley Field

Classic. Legendary. Original.

Wrigley Field is all that and so much more.

To celebrate us turning 40 years old, a few of my friends and I planned a trip to Chicago. So naturally, we had to take in a Cubs game.

This was the last home game for the 100th year anniversary of Wrigley Field. So magical to be at the 2nd oldest baseball stadium.

So many more adventures to be had.

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