Friday, May 30, 2014

First Kayak Ride in 39 Years

I recently purchased a used "Pisgah: Liquid Logic 13.5' Kayak" from a friend of a neighbor. I don't mind sometimes purchasing second hand items as you can usually pay less than a new item and you don't have to pay any sales tax. So, I had an inaugural kayak trip around "Swan Pond " which is across the street from my home. Along with the kayak I purchased as part of the price I paid, a paddle and a small 2 wheeled device that I fastened under the kayak so I could wheel the kayak down the street. to the landing. Swan Pond is an "inter-tidal pond  which flows down Swan Pond river to Nantucket Sound salt water. I must say that walking the kayak down to the landing and back to my house probably was more exercise than the actual kayak trip.

The last time I was in a kayak was in Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania at Slippery Rock State College as part of an outdoor recreational workshop while attending the University of Connecticut (UCONN) when I was active in "student activities" as a member of the Student Union Board of Governors. I remember after returning from this trip to Slippery Rock that I was looking through a college student programming magazine and there I was in a picture in this magazine paddling in a kayak.

After a couple of minutes I regained my "sea legs" and was paddling pretty well after only a 39 year hiatus. I guess paddling a kayak is just like riding a bike except on the water and without wheels but similar that once you have done certain "motor skills" you can recall past experiences even if the form of transportation doesn't have a motor. I paddled around this small island and saw a couple of ducks and small birds. I water was real shallow near this little island and I actually grounded the kayak about 25 yards from this island but easily pushed off with the paddle.

I enjoyed the ride and saw one swan a swimin' on the return trip to the landing. I'll have to kayak again as when you first purchase an item the first time you use it you in effect have paid the full price for its use, then the second time you have paid half the purchase price, third time 1/3 the price... and so on so that that more times you use something the effective price per use is reduced.

I  tried to "christen" this kayak with a glass bottle of "Sam Adams Summer Ale" but when I tried to smash to beer bottle of the plastic hull of the kayak the beer bottle bounced off of the plastic kayak and almost hit me in the face.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Wrong Numbers

A couple weeks ago I was on the phone paying my Comcast  internet service bill. These companies as many of you know employ automated telephone voices that tell you to press "1" for English, "2" for Spanish, and other numbers for different departments such as bill paying, technical department and so forth. If you are paying your bill then you have to enter the amount you want to pay and then your credit card number.

For some reason, I was having trouble that time reading my credit card number correctly to enter on the phone and Comcast was saying I entered an incorrect card number. So, I had to hang up and try again a couple of times. The Comcast final digit is a "9" in their phone number. I'm continuing trying to pay my bill and all of a sudden a police car pulled up in front of my house and an officer came up to my door and asked me if everything was "OK" as they received a "911" call from my phone. The officer then looked deep into my eyes as I returned his stare and told him that I didn't intentionally dial "911" and that I was sorry if somehow inadvertently this "911" was called. The officer also asked if anyone else was in my house and I replied "No".  Somehow I guess between entering the last digit of the Comcast phone number and responding to some of the auto prompts it must have come out with a "911" sequence.

I remember years ago a few times each season at the Soundings resort on Cape Cod that the Dennis police would say one of our had dialed "911". What happened at the Soundings at the time was that guests ha to first dial "9" to get an outside line then "1" for a long distance number, then I guess they would forget that they already had dialed a "1" so they would press "1" again on the phone for a "911" sequence.

Sometimes "wrong numbers" do bring quick unexpected results I guess.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Harbor View Lobster Roll

Had a late lunch today at the Sesuit Harbor Cafe in Dennis on Cape Cod. As seen here from the photos, you can eat right on the harbor front amid the boats of the harbor and the Northside Marina. The lobster roll was quite good and is self-proclaimed "World Famous" so you may have already heard about them. Parking is a little "tricky" as noted on the map with danger areas highlighted. While I was there eating this boat in the above photo was being transported to one of the marina buildings to be worked on. Dining is very casual here and you don't have to wear a tuxedo or even a regular dinner jacket. I brought my own beer (Cisco IPA from Nantucket) to go along with my lobster roll,french fries and cole slaw. 

I'll probably start recommending this place to the guests at the Soundings and Breakers resorts as many folks ask where they can eat at a waterfront location. There are also "lobster roll cruises" available for the ultimate dining on the water experience. So, this is a good fresh air salt water spot to consider if you are in the mid-Cape area. I don't know if I would want to eat outside on a rainy day or night; but on a good day this is not a bad place to be as long as you stay away from the "danger' areas on the map.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Mr. Cordial

Brother Scott recently gave me some of his "home brew", namely some Cranberry Cordial. It tasted quite good somewhat sweet and somewhat tart which reminds me of when I worked at "The Captain's Clambake Emporium restaurant in the early to mid 80's. We had a player piano in the restaurant and one of my roles was to change the piano rolls after each song finished. We primarily catered to senior citizen motor coach tour groups and I do recall one time introducing the song "Let Me Call You Sweetheart" as "Let Me Call You Sweet  (pause pause..Tart); some of the seniors thought that was a little risque.

Yes, my brother could be known as "Mr. Cordial". A friend of mine (Tom) make his own peach brandy which is quite good as well and I think that is just peachy.

Monday, May 5, 2014

A Sterling Reputation

What do you think of the recent taped comments from Donald Sterling, the owner of the NBA Los Angeles Clippers that portray his personal dislike for his mistress associating in public with black people? What do you think of the NBA's response to these admittedly "hateful" and non-politically correct private comments that were taped without Mr. Sterling's consent or knowledge that became public and the announced fine of 2.5 million dollars, a lifetime ban from attending Clippers games and being involved with the team he owns and the pressure exerted by current commissioner Adam Silver for Sterling to sell the Clippers? Hmmmm?

While Mr. Sterling's comments are not to be condoned or approved of do you think that maybe as Dallas Maverick's owner Mark Cuban expressed recently that this may be the start of a "slippery slope" of "political correctness" that to me may escalate if continued in further examples of opinion management and restraint of people expressing their rights to free speech (especially private free speech not intended for public consumption?) The public airing of these private conversations has made many NBA and Clipper sponsors reconsider their involvement with professional basketball. Pro basketball franchises are a rare and valuable commodity and I wonder if the mistress was somehow enticed by people interested in acquiring an NBA team to steering these taped conversations in order to "pound Sterling" and put pressure on him to force the sale of the Clippers.

I wonder what the future will hold if all  "politically incorrect" speech and behavior were dealt with to the extent of the punishment and sanctions proposed for Mr. Sterling. There are plenty of examples of black leaders such as President Obama's Minister Rev Jeremiah Wright who said that America had "(9-11) it coming due to its support of terrorism against Palestinians and Black South Africa. "God Damn America".
Louis Farrakhan, of the Nation of Islam said "The Jews don't like Farrakhan, so they call me Hitler. Well,  that's a good name. Hitler was a very great man."Mr. Farrakhan is of the opinion that the Hurricane Katrina levees were bombed so that the New Orleans area where black people live was flooded while the areas of the city where predominantly white people live was not flooded.

There are countless examples of professional athletes that have lived a less than "sterling life". The Bible says " Judge not lest he be judged". And, unless we as a society wish to be ruled under a strict moral code such as the "Taliban" and have every one's private thoughts and conversations constantly monitored and judged then I think we need to be careful as to how we react to people's expression of their private not for public opinions. We need to tolerate and defend the right of all people to express their opinions; even when we don't happen to agree with them. We should all try to develop a "sterling reputation" just not in this case a "Donald Sterling reputation".

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Soundings Resort Pool and Hot Tub

Here are a couple photos taken this morning of the new Soundings Resort indoor pool and outdoor hot tub. I'll be curious to see the finished product.

Elevation at the Beach

The Soundings Resort in Dennisport on Cape Cod is in the middle of a 25 room addition along with a new pool, hot tub and new deck surrounding the outdoor pool. In addition, something relatively rare for Cape Cod, (at least for ocean front resorts in the mid-Cape area) an elevator is currently being constructed for the East Wing with connections to the "Nantucket" building. Yes, this accessibility feature will make it easier for guests to get themselves and their luggage to their rooms. Of course, having an elevator does have its ups and downs but overall this should add some levity to the property and make for "happy guests".