31 January 2006



Main Entry: et·y·mol·o·gy
Pronunciation: -jE
Function: noun
Inflected Form(s): plural -gies
Etymology: Middle English ethimologie, from Latin etymologia, from Greek, from etymon + -logia -logy
1 : the history of a linguistic form (as a word) shown by tracing its development since its earliest recorded occurrence in the language where it is found, by tracing its transmission from one language to another, by analyzing it into its component parts, by identifying its cognates in other languages, or by tracing it and its cognates to a common ancestral form in an ancestral language
2 : a branch of linguistics concerned with etymologies
- et·y·mo·log·i·cal /-m&-'lä-ji-k&l/ adjective
- et·y·mo·log·i·cal·ly /-k(&-)lE/ adverb

Kera and I ventured out to get our German/EU drivers licenses. After having visited the Führerschein Büro we now know the etymology of bureaucracy and (cover your eyes...) clusterf*ck! One other thing that we discovered is that government workers worldwide are the same hippie/apothetic folks. It was an amazing epiphany whilst sitting there that, indeed, we were looking at a certain breed of folks who work for the government. Odd.

I'll keep it short but before anyone else ever moves to Europe, find out what states you can get a license (car only.. not a chauffeurs license) and not have to take any of the tests (Prüfungen). Of course, if you're moving to Germany, make sure that you do this at least two years in advance.

Falls under WTF?

Other revelations... I think if I see one more piece of Pink outdoor clothing I'm going to vomit! Pink should be reserved for really nice bikes and really nice bikes. That's it. I'll give Valentines day a break, but beyond that, it's time to let it die.

This is SEXY!

We drove down to Garmisch last weekend and stayed with Mai and Kit. Unfortunately, Mai had to work so we didn't get to see much of her. Due to traffic on Sat. morning, we showed up at the World Cup ski Downhill race in time to see the last skier. Sunday, we had better luck getting there on time. However, an over zealous ticket guy ran us off the mountain. Instead, we stood in the XC ski field and watched. The announcer could be heard for miles as his voice was echoing off the valley walls.

After watching for awhile, we decided that it was time to attempt skate XC skiing again. It went far better for me this time. It went well enough that Kera and I will probably invest in some equipment at some point. A cool point to go along with this revelation is that there's a German winter triathlon series (run, mountain bike & XC skate ski). Yup, another outdoor addiction.

Lastly, we're planning to head down to Gardasee in Italy for a weekend of mountain biking. We both really need a little warmer weather and the chance to ride our bikes with bike shorts and jackets if necessary. Good times!

The following week, we're off to Egypt! Woopie!!

More pics...

Garmisch Trip for World Cup

Neuschwanstein Castle, etc.

21 January 2006

The Spaceship has landed!

We received our car, courtesy of my wife's multi-national corporation, yesterday. It's an Audi A4 Avant (wagon to you and me). Long story, but we wanted Blue or Red but those colors were deemed "too extreme" and we ended up with dark Grey. It's actually a beautiful car. The car has been dubbed "the Spaceship" is because the Navigational system also functions as a DVD Player/TV/Phone/Radio/CD changer/Information center and more. The screen, which is huge, folds down to expose the DVD port and two SD card slots so that you can play zillions of MP3's. Kinda cool!

The wagon, excuse me, Avant option is great as it'll allow us to do all the outdoor things we love to do (i.e. cycling, racing, camping, snow sports, etc.) and not have to plop the stuff in the back seat. I brought my bike race over as well. One worry is that we have one of the hydraulic over/under parking spots and I'm afraid with the rack on the car may not fit in the space. Wish me luck.

Other news! Got my new boots and bindings for the snowboard. My set-up is now as follows... Burton Motion board - 162 cm, Mikey LeBlanc (Red/Leather) bindings from Drake (which it seems is owned by Northwave... Hmmm), and Vans Danny Kass II boots in this same lovely shade of Green www.vanssnow.com/kass/index.html. Now... I just have to learn to snowboard. I have one more week of school and then the following week I may head over to www.spitzingsee.de/ and attempt to learn whilst avoiding killing myself.

Have a charming weekend gang. Looks like we're off to Nass Ramstein... or not, who knows? I get to drive the new car on the Autobahn though. Heheh!

Schoony... I love this pic. Sorry dude!

13 January 2006


Yesterday I forgot to turn my cell phone on until I got home from the gym about 4:30. Fist thing I get are a couple of SMS messages from Kera... "Dude, give me a call"... "Dude, cell phones only work when you have them on". You get the picture. Turns out we got an offer on the house. Hopefully, they'll buy it and then one house will be gone.

Then, the other. Eh-hem. :-)

Other news, if I didn't tell you already, I did the mountain bike race last Friday. Got the crap beaten out of me by the ground/ice. It happened because of the tremendous amount of ice on the ground. Had it been just snow, I think that I'd have finished much better. As it was, I was the last person on the long course to get scored. Kinda... DFL. There were a lot of people that didn't finish due to injury or sudden flashes of "I'm gonna die if I continue". Me... I must be damaged as I can't and wouldn't say no.

I still have bruises and scabs... but I'll be back next year.

Our car, finally, arrives on Thursday of next week. The "spaceship" as we've taken to calling it, will be welcome on weekends so that we can take off to various locals within easy driving distance. Also on tap will be trips to Ikea, the junk yard to dispose of the exploding shrank/dresser and many other things. When we get our parking spot, the car will probably sit there most of the time as it really isn't worth driving within the city only to spend 3X as much time finding a spot to park.

Kera seems to be adapting to her job well these days. She's busy but that's obviously much better than being bored. It'll still be a long while before we have any inkling of what the Swiss RE buyout will mean.

School is going o.k. I have to go on Monday to register for Kurs III. Only two more weeks in Kurs II. I'm doing much better but have a long way to go.

Meeting with Marcus, the bike shop owner went well...both times. He's a really nice guy and I'm going to head out to his shop one of these days and chat with him. See if he does indeed have an interest in hiring me or no.

Either way, I'm thinking of looking in to getting my ESL certification as there are so many people here that want to learn English. It will also put me in a better place to put up notice at the Universität that I'm for hire to proofread papers for students. As you know, I'm relatively good at finding work when I want.

That's about it. Have a fantastic weekend.

07 January 2006

Howdy 2006!! 'Sup?

Happy New Year everyone.... You've had a week for the newness to wear off. I hope you've all figured out whether or not you'll be able to uphold those resolutions, whether made on New Years or otherwise. I wish you well in that regard.

Next... please send good thoughts and prayers to my friends Catherine and Anne. They can use all the heaping helpings of love, thoughts and prayers (to any deity) that you can send them right now. Yes, I'm thinking of you two. Be well my dears.

Other news.. we had a fun but relaxed New Years celebration with Sara and Christian. Just hung out, did fondue (for hours), talked and watched really, really bad old videos from the late 70's & early 80's. At midnight, or slightly before, we started lighting fireworks. It's a HUGE tradition here. The skies light up for about 3 hours. Every corner is filled with people, young and old sending things in to the heavens.

We're starting to get excited... er, I'm getting there, Kera is giddy about the Egypt trip. Here's the link http://geckosadventures.com/mid_east/trip_overview.asp?trip=2028 It just takes me awhile to get excited. It'll happen about the time that we hit the airport on the way there.

I don't know HTML... someone help me here...
[URL=http://geckosadventures.com/mid_east/trip_overview.asp?trip=2028] Here's the Egypt link[/URL]

Lastly... Ugh! Did the Snow (should have been ICE) Race yesterday. Kind of feel as though I've been beaten up and left in an alley. I did get lucky #13 (my birthday, oddly enough) and that probably dictated how many times that I'd hit the ground.

In 51 km I had somewhere in the neighborhood of 10-13 crashes. Most of them were on the first lap. I had two really hard hits on the second lap. At that point I was going much faster and I was tired. Looks like I'll be buying a new helmet due to one of them. Nothing like sliding on your back/shoulders/head and feeling your head hit a rock. Nice dent in the helmet. Better than my head.

At some point there'll be pics and I'll try to post 'em. No idea how I did, but I was the only one in our group of four to finish the race. Must've been between 200-250 idiots out there with me. A lot were just doing the 26 km or the Duathlon. I think that there were only two single-speeds. One was Tom and then myself.

Think that's about all for now.. Have a great weekend.