Monthly Archives: May 2010

Bathrooms, Hot Dancing, and Burger King Ribs

It’s been a fairly quiet week or so. Vivian and I have been taking advantage of our new subscription to NetFlix, and last Friday we kicked off the weekend by sampling some flame-grilled ribs at Burger King. Yes, the Home of the Whopper is now home to ribs, breakfast bowls, and funnel cake sticks. It’s apparently about one pancake short of becoming a drive-through Village Inn, but that’s OK with us.

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In other news, Dennis and I managed to (nearly) finish off the Great Bathroom Project of 2010. We had to improvise in a few places, such as adding a washer and a longer screw when some of the fittings were too short to fit through the new tub shell walls. It was a much better solution that the one a grumpy store clerk at Lowe’s gave us, which was pretty much to start all over again.

On Sunday, the Jitterbugs had another episode of Lindy in the Park, which was more than welcome, despite the 90-degree heat. Vivian and I got to work up a sweat outside and then crawl inside Ted & Wally’s for some chai and PB&J ice cream afterward. Yummy.

Next weekend, Vivian and I will be hosting the annual Comic Genesis cookout at our house, which means we’ll be having a couple old friends staying here for the weekend. That will definitely be an adventure!

Showers, Gardens, and Bike Rides

Vivian and I have been spending a little more time at home (and with each other) over the past week or so, going out for breakfast at IHOP on a whim on Friday and then terrifying each other by watching The Ring on Friday night.

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On Saturday, Vivian and her mom started work on our garden while I chiseled away some tile in our bathroom. I saved the last one for her, though, which she happily tore off. That afternoon, Vivian attended a baby shower for our mutual friend Kara while I watched How to Tame your Dragon with my brothers, who happened to stop by for a while. Donna and Vivian did some more work in the garden while we spent quality time playing video games, and I grilled up some brats for dinner at the end of the day.

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On Sunday, Vivian and Donna finished up their work in the garden, and then Dennis came over to help us make a little more progress on the bathroom. He patched up the holes we cut into the wall a few weeks ago, and then he and I somehow managed to shove a tub enclosure into a space that was a good half-inch too small for it. It was something of an adventure, but should be all finished as soon as we get the third piece up and seal everything off (likely with a little tile at the end).

On Tuesday evening this week, Vivian and I decided to go on a two-hour bike ride up and down the Keystone Trail. I hadn’t actually ridden a bike in about twenty years (I was actually struck by a car while in middle school and kind of gave up the hobby afterward) but it was like, well, riding a bike. We pedaled all the way from the Culver’s just south of Cornhusker up to the I-80 overpass off 60th street. We’ll likely go even farther the next time around, just as soon as our butts get used to the ride.

15 minutes of fame

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It’s been a fun, busy week for Vivian and me, with lots of cool things happening in a fairly short space of time. On Wednesday last week, I finally got around to mowing our lawn for the very first time. I had to get up early in the morning in order to make time for it (in-between rain showers and other activities). That evening we both went down to South Omaha to celebrate Cinco de Mayo at El Dorado, a lovely Mexican restaurant on the corner of 24th and Q. They specialize in seafood, and la comida es muy auténtica — our waitress didn’t speak much English, and I had to fall back on what I could remember of my high school Spanish in order to translate.

On Friday, I crossed another big milestone in my life: I turned one billion seconds old at 11:45 a.m. (something that happens only twice in an average lifetime)!

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I dropped by JNO on Friday, and our good friends from Sioux Falls David and Anna got to spend the night at our place. On Saturday, Vivian and I had some fun trekking down to Lincoln to explore the Secret Bridges for a little while. We returned home that evening with avocado smoothies and Big Sal’s pizza to enjoy our Netflix account. Yes, we finally subscribed to the DVD-rental-by-mail cult, and we’ve filled up our queue to more than 50 different films so far. We managed to cross off Revenge of the Nerds, D.A.R.Y.L., and Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan off the list in the first three days. Hopefully it’ll be worth our $9 a month.
Secret Bridges trip

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Sunday was Mother’s Day, of course, and Vivian prepared a delicious brunch of crustless quiche and strawberry crepes for her parents and me. We also gave her a goofy toad for her garden. I gave my own mom in North Carolina a call to say Happy Mother’s Day and make sure she got the flowers we’d had delivered.

We had enough time afterward to drop by the very first Lindy in the Park of the season, working off a few of our excess calories just in time to have some ice cream at Ted & Wally’s immediately afterward.

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The biggest highlight of the whole week, however, came on Sunday night. On Valentine’s Day, I’d given Vivian tickets to see Whose Line all-stars Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood live at the Holland Center downtown. They were as funny on stage and in person as they were on TV, and guess who got called up on stage for the sound effects game toward the end of the show? That’s right — me! It was quite a thrill to shake hands with two brilliant comedians I’ve watched on TV for so many years. It was also pretty exciting to burp on command and hum “La Cucaracha” as an imaginary car horn for a couple thousand people.

Burgers, Bathrooms, and Renaissance Fairs

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It was another eventful weekend in Omaha, and Vivian and I got to enjoy some of the gorgeous spring weather we’ve been blessed with. Our weekend started off with a burger grilling contest at Tamra and Andy‘s house. We competed against them both, along with Tamra’s brother Michael and their mutual friend Avery, in coming up with the best burger recipe. Vivian and I took only fourth place with our Bay Burgers made with basil and minced garlic, while Tamra took first with her burger made with “special sauce.” It was a good time even if we didn’t win, and we got to stuff ourselves with plenty of juicy ground beef all around. (I personally liked Michael’s Danger Ranger Special the best.)

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On Saturday, I got to attend my very first Renaissance Fair. I’d heard of these things before, mostly from my geeky friends, and had wanted to attend one for quite some time. The event was held at the Bellevue Berry Farm, which seemed like a Western-themed version of Vala’s Pumpkin Patch, at least when it isn’t dressed up with Medieval Festivities. Vivian and I got to see a joust, some dancers playing with fire, and sword-fighting demonstrations from both pirates and ninjas. We also got to tour some of the more education booths, where we could try on chain mail and churn butter. We also got to have a turkey leg and some homemade root beer for lunch, a swell as browse through a large selection of swords. Topping the day off was a performance by 88 Improv, who were hilarious, as usual.

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On Sunday, we took over a Cici’s Pizza restaurant with our friends from bible study, and then dropped by Lowe’s to buy some things to remodel our upstairs bathroom.

Our friend Dennis gracious volunteered to spend Monday with me tearing it apart and cutting out the 35-year-old plumbing so we could install some new fittings, specifically a shower head for a bathtub that lacked one. We both owe Dennis one of the biggest Ones that has ever been owed, as he did pretty much everything while I mostly watched and handed him tools as needed. After three or four trips to the hardware store (and much soldering), we had a fully functional shower where once had only been a leaky faucet. Awesome job, Dennis!