December 28, 2005

A Bored, Bored Boy In A Rut

Some DC Street

I'm headed up to Boston tomorrow, where I'll be for New Year's Eve this year. Bye bye, 2005, I hope 2006 is better.

Everyone knows that the Red Sox play The Standells' Dirty Water after every win at Fenway. The first Standells song I ever heard was a cover of Sometimes Good Guys Don't Wear White by Minor Threat. It wasn't until years later that I finally got around to tracking down the original version of the song and first heard Dirty Water as well. Strangely, the band that first hit it big with a song about Boston was actually from L.A. The song was written by their producer, Ed Cobb, who supposedly wrote it after being mugged on a bridge along the Charles.
The Standells - Sometimes Good Guys Don't Wear White

Posted by Drew at 07:01 PM | Comments (0)

December 27, 2005

Sweet Deals On Surgery

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The spot on the Ellipse where I tore my ACL.

There was no pain. The popping sound that is a common characteristic of a tear of the anterior cruciate ligament was absent at well, or was there, and I simply didnít hear it. I was sprinting downfield towards the makeshift endzone when it happened. I looked back over my left shoulder towards the quarterback, looking for the ball, which was going to fall short because it was underthrown or I had overrun the pass. Who knows? Precise routes arenít exactly a part of pick-up games of two-hand touch. I hit the brakes, and came to a hard stop and then I was on the ground. No transition or time to think about breaking my fall. Just down, ever so suddenly down on the ground, cradling my leg, and wondering what the hell happened. I hadnít felt my leg give way. It was more like the leg hadnít been there at all. I had reached out for the ground with my left leg, only to find out that it wasnít there, and that it had vanished at this key moment, leaving nothing to support my body, nothing to keep me upright. The ball bounced besides me on the scraggly grass of the Ellipse and rolled away.

[Woops, didn't realize that the extended entry wouldn't go out in the RSS feed. There is more after the jump.]

I was able to limp off the field without much of a problem and was able to deny reality for a bit. Walking back to the Farragut West station was when I first experienced the wonders of a trick knee. I took a long stride as I walked toward the escalator, I heard a sharp, loud crack, the knee gave way and I nearly fell down again. Thatís when I knew that I was going to be joining my brother in the Patellar Tendon Autograft Club (we have membership cards and everything). By the time I got out of my car after driving home, the knee was locked in a bent position by the tight embrace of excess fluid that was swelling my knee to the dimensions of a grapefruit.

A week later, my knee slipped again while I was walking into the basement of a bar in Adams Morgan on Cinco de Mayo. After having a beer, it was time to head back to my apartment and practice the routine that had become very familiar: rest, ice, compression and elevation. The next week, I would finally get an appointment with an orthopedic surgeon, have an MRI, confirm that I was lacking a key ligament and had also managed to shred my medial meniscus to boot.

On July 14th, an anesthesiologist at Virginia Hospital Center slid a Tuohy needle and a catheter into the epidural space of my spine. Seemingly moments later, I woke up in the recovery room, still numb from the waist down. As the grogginess of the painkillers wore off, I massaged my legs with my hands in an effort to restore some semblance of feeling. Looking at the end of the gurney, I made my alien feet wave hello to the feeling end of my body. I couldnít seem them yet, but underneath the bandages on my left leg were 4 fresh sutures: 1 long line of stitches that started in the middle of my kneecap and went down my leg for another 3 inches and 3 small X-shaped ones where the arthroscopic tubes had been inserted into my body. Inside my knee, a piece of my patellar tendon had been anchored in place as a new ACL by my surgeon. That was about almost 6 months ago, and Iím getting near normal levels of activity. As soon as a month or two from now, I may even be playing soccer again.

Back on that day in the last week of April, I went down to the Ellipse to find a few of my friends for a pick-up game of soccer. Instead, I wound up playing frisbee and football with a nice group of folks who called themselves the Mall Ball gang. I hope to be playing soccer indoor before it gets warm again, but once the temperature rises, Iím sure that Iíll be down on the Ellipse again, this time looking for the Mall Ball people. I need another chance out on that field, if only to close out this last year of surgery and rehabilitation.

Music for anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction surgery:
Burning Airlines - Sweet Deals On Surgery

Posted by Drew at 07:02 PM | Comments (4)

December 26, 2005

6th Annual Tree Trimming Party

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Photos from the 6th Annual Tree Trimming Party are up.

Posted by Drew at 08:26 PM | Comments (0)

December 22, 2005

Latkepalooza

Latkepalooza 12

On Sunday, a bunch of us got together to pig out at Hart and Melissa's place on latkes, meatballs and one of Michaela's enormous cakes. A bunch of photos from Latkepalooza are up on Flickr.

Posted by Drew at 11:07 PM | Comments (0)

December 21, 2005

Take Good Care Of The Poor Boy

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Natalya and Michael.

Monday night, I was awakened with quite sudden urgency by my stomach. Food poisoning is a bitch, I don't recommend it at all. I'm still on a diet of crackers, soup and apple sauce.

As for holiday photos, I'm starting to get them scanned in now. If you are looking for photos of Tom, Catherine and Charles' party, they've been scanned, uploaded and added to the existing photos on Flickr. Turns out I only took 7 photos that night, woops.

Posted by Drew at 05:37 PM | Comments (0)

December 19, 2005

He's In Parties

Metro Center 3

I'm pretty exhausted after a weekend of holiday parties and pushing my surgically repaired knee to its limits at the gym this evening. If you've been checking here for photos from ChasTomCat's party, the 6th Annual Tree Trimming Party or Latkepalooza, check back in a few days, I'll have my negatives back by then.

Posted by Drew at 10:16 PM | Comments (0)

December 17, 2005

The Road To Hell Is Paved With Chocolate Treats

East Falls Church Metro 20

Right now, I'm making this chocolate mousse recipe as a dessert for tomorrow's latke party.

Posted by Drew at 03:32 PM | Comments (0)

December 15, 2005

Rest Your Head

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Selling flowers at the East Falls Church station.

Tonight's just a nice evening of relaxing at home since I'll be running a gauntlet of holiday parties this weekend. Just look around for me, I'll be the guy with the huge black camera, swiggin' some whiskey on the rocks and wearing a Pandamonium t-shirt. Or possibly Stabby McKnife.

Posted by Drew at 09:03 PM | Comments (2)

December 14, 2005

Freezing in Falls Church

East Falls Church Metro 18

To whomever designed this apartment to include two gigantic, cheap sliding glass doors that let the cold right in: I hope you are freezing your ass off as well, because I cannot keep warm.

Posted by Drew at 11:33 PM | Comments (0)

December 13, 2005

Pull The Wires From The Wall

Stuck
I'm moving about this fast on the Internet right now.

I'm losing abnormal amounts of packets, my latency is high and neither I or tech support know exactly what is wrong, but we have narrowed it down to my cable modem or my NIC. Yet another fun evening of troubleshooting. Bleh.

Sometime before it closes on January 21st, I am definetly going to swing by the Library of Congress' exhibition of WWII-era Kodachrome slides. The entirety of the color collection and much of the black and white shot by the FSA/OWI documentary photographers are available on-line at the Library of Congress website.

A user called uground1 has posted some great portraits of people from the London scene from 1976 to 1984 to Flickr.

Posted by Drew at 08:39 PM | Comments (2)

December 11, 2005

Sleeping My Weekend Away

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Empty bike racks at the East Fall Church Metro.

In between two hectic holiday weekends, I took this one off so that I would have time out to read, watch movies, play some computer games, catch up on sleep and watch the Terps win the NCAA soccer tournament. Back to the social grind next weekend!

For your consideration, Oxes' great "half" cover of the Foo Fighters' Everlong:
Oxes - Everlong

Posted by Drew at 10:35 PM | Comments (0)

December 07, 2005

Hi Honey, How's Boston?

Jim and Lisette
Jim and Lisette in the darkroom.

Two Things About Today:
1. I got an A- in Deterministic Models! At the beginning of the class, around the time I finished the first quiz, I would have told you this class was not going to go well at all.
2. Tickets for Boston have been purchased and I will be ringing in the new year in the frigid land of Massachusetts. Call me on New Year's Eve if you would like to do a live performance of The Ice of Boston.

Everyone Loves Pirates:

Last year, after a loss to Texas A.&M. in overtime, Leach hauled the team into the conference room on Sunday morning and delivered a three-hour lecture on the history of pirates. Leach read from his favorite pirate history, "Under the Black Flag," by David Cordingly (the passages about homosexuality on pirate ships had been crossed out). The analogy to football held up for a few minutes, but after a bit, it was clear that Coach Leach was just . . . talking about pirates. The quarterback Cody Hodges says of his coach: "You learn not to ask questions. If you ask questions, it just goes on longer."
Check out this great article about Mike Leach, the coach of Texas Tech Raiders. I'll have to watch the Cotton Bowl so I can see some of Leach's non-traditional offensive schemes.

Anthropomorphic Graffiti Addiction: Great Amazon reviews from Viktor_57. Check back often, he puts new reviews up regularly.

Posted by Drew at 05:27 PM | Comments (0)

December 06, 2005

Everyone Knows The Sun Never Shows

Out in Baltimore

Yesterday around midnight, the roads were peaceful and empty as I drove home. Earlier in the afternoon, I had watched the cars on 395 wait in long, barely moving lines as everyone attempted to get home before the snow had a chance to accumulate. The first real snow-related traffic jam, the true sign that winter has come to the D.C. area.

The Fastbacks - In The Winter

Posted by Drew at 09:51 PM | Comments (0)

December 04, 2005

The BB&T Classic

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The view from the cheap seats at last year's BB&T Classic.

Tommorrow is the annual BB&T Classic, which isn't a tournament for some reason this year, which will take a lot of the fun out of it. The GW/Maryland game should still be a blast though.

Three photos from last year's trip to the BB&T:
A George Mason player at the charity stripe.
The retired numbers of three Caps hanging from the rafters.
A wider view of the arena.

Posted by Drew at 10:03 PM | Comments (2)

December 01, 2005

Here Come The Terrible Twos

Steve's Birthday 10

So, That Happened, Again: Despite being felled by numerous physical ailments this year, I've managed to keep my on-line presence running to its second birthday. A little too much digging through the archival negatives to find new material for my taste due to the extended periods where I was kept out of action by my knee injury and my bout with the flu/bronchitis. Hopefully I'll be able to get out and shoot a little more during this coming year. I've flirted with the mp3 blog thing before, but it's become a little more of a regular feature lately; one that I think I will keep up, at least on a semi-regular basis.

On Curious Soccer Terms: As I've been starting to run again, it's finally starting to seem realistic to me that I might be able to see some time on the soccer field as early as February or March. Talking to a co-worker today, we got sidetracked by the provenance of the nutmeg, a soccer move where you play the ball through the legs of another player, thereby retaining possession and thoroughly humiliating them at the same time. But where did the term come from? Our assumption was that it had something to do with the male anatomy, but it turns out the likely source is Victorian slang that means "to be tricked or deceived, especially in a manner which makes the victim look foolish." There's an equivalent term for nutmeg (as it pertains to soccer) in a slew of foreign languages, but for the most part they're a little more straightforward.

Posted by Drew at 09:38 PM | Comments (2)