Friday, February 29, 2008

Tennis season

Last weekend also marked the first weekend of the new U.S. Tennis Association season. This year I am captain of two teams, one at 3.0 (my true level) and one at 3.5 (my target level).

My 3.0 team won its match 4-1, with our only loss being a forfeit because we didn't have enough players. El Capitan was himself absent, skiing in Whitefish.

The 3.5 team lost 0-5, but put up a pretty good fight.

I foresee a season of destiny


My family took the Amtrak from Spokane to Whitefish, Mont., last weekend for a spectacular weekend of skiing at Big Mountain. Amtrak is definitely the way to go, even though the train departs Spokane about 1 am and reaches Whitefish at 7 am. We stayed at the Meadow Lake resort, and enjoyed three days of prime conditions in the Montana Rockies. I forget sometimes that the reason I moved to Spokane in the first place was to be close enough to recreate in my home state of Montana. That's some members of our party at the Tudor-style train station in Whitefish, waiting for the return train.

We went with the Crumpackers, whose kids are the same age as Tom and Eli, which always makes it easier for the adults to have a good time. The kids played cards in the club car on the way back, while I read my book and fell asleep.
The only downside was that Ann picked up a bad cold and was under the weather for much of the trip. You wouldn't know it to look at her smiling face on the pix below, where she appears to be grading my talents as a husband. That's her friend Min on the left. The picture on the right shows reluctant skier Eli taking a turn on the slopes.
Whitefish was the scene a couple of years ago of a legendary scene in my ski career. I was riding up the lift with a guy who introduced himself as former NFL quarterback Bobby Hebert, the Cajun Cannon. We had a nice chat, but when we got off at the top our skis got tangled up and Hebert fell down. As he struggled to get up, the chair hit him in the helmet and knocked him down again. I wanted to say ``That's the way we hit in Montana, Cannon, not like those pansy NFL types.'' But instead I helped him up and skied away.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Slopes of Spokane

Went to Silver Mountain Ski Area outside Kellogg, Idaho, on Sunday and it was the best day of the season so far. Silver Mountain used to be called Jackass Ski Area, which alone makes it worth patronizing. We went with some friends, and the blue ski and good snow lifted everyone's spirits during what has been a long, gray winter. That's Peggy (friend), me, Tom and Eli, friend Saige, and Ann about to go down Silverbelle.
You get to the top of the mountain at Silver via a 20-minute gondola ride from the parking lot. Here I am on the ride down, contemplating fajitas and brew after a long day riding the blues.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Ruled By Women

With Hillary Clinton coming to town to campaign tomorrow, I have had occasion to reflect on how completely ruled by women we are in this part of the world.

Setting aside the whole issue of Mom, I see that women are the authority figures in many aspects of my life.

In Washington state, we have two women as U.S. senators, a female governor, and a congresswoman who represents this area in Washington, D.C. The mayor of Spokane is a woman. My boss is a woman. My wife and I work for the same company, but she is in management and I am not, so she is sort of a boss also.

So what difference would a female president make?

Fortunately, as a Greek male, I am well schooled in the proper place of women in our society. Honey, would you edit this?

Photo at Right: My throne awaits.