Category Archives: Basketball

Houston (Vidor) Mission Trip – Day 2

This is my telling of my experience on the Boone First United Methodist Church Youth Group’s Mission Trip to Houston (Vidor). There were 18 people on the mission trip and all of them experienced the mission trip in a completely different way than I did.

Therefore, you should pull your tired bones out of bed on Sunday, July 8 and drag yourself to the basement of the Boone First United Methodist Church (703 Arden Street) between worship services (approximately 10 AM) and listen to the other 17 people give their testimony about the mission trip. I’ll probably run my yap as well. There will also be a video. Also, there will be refreshments.

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I woke up on the cold hard floor of the Methodist church in Saginaw. I got dressed and prepared myself mentally for the day.

Here are some pictures from the day:


Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Based on the amount of stores that cater to both, Texans LOVE donuts and pornography. I imagine some probably do both at the same time. I’m not here to judge.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Statue in the church’s beautiful courtyard.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Fountain in the same beautiful courtyard.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Their women’s group made us a delicious breakfast.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
A staple of every Methodist diet, egg casserole!

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
The lady who made us the breakfast did taunt us with a description of dish she described as “too much”: Breakfast Lasagna. Sign me up lady!

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Myrtle.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Donovan discussing the courtyard.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Jaxon still thinks it is a thrill to pump gas. I’m not afraid to exploit his youthful enthusiasm.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Gas station breakfast food. Hard pass.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
The church televises their worship services into their fellowship area. We get it, you’re good with technology.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Congregating to worship an awesome God!

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
We went to their acoustic service. It was great music lead by a great musician!

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
They sit in the front row at our church too…

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
The lady in the middle was a Pastor at the church. The one on the right was a member of the congregation that recently became a Pastor and was getting assigned to her first church. She gave the sermon. I loved this worship service. There were two things of note that happened. 1 funny and 1 tragic. The funny thins was that they discussed a couple in the church that had gotten married the previous day in “Detroit or Chicago. Some Yankee town.” The tragic thing was a member of their congregation was killed in a car accident on the previous day. He left behind a wife and 2 small children. Happy Father’s Day.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Maci taking Communion

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Kolbe taking Communion

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Mackenzie taking Communion

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Summer taking Communion

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Jentry taking Communion

Something else unique about this church was they did the light a candle thing in the corner. This is something I’ve always affiliated with Catholics because I’ve only ever seen it in Catholic churches. Really, mostly in movies. I lit 2 candles.
Shortly after the worship service, we hit the road for Vidor. Another 7 hours or so in the van coming up!


Houston Mission Trip - 2018
We stopped in a town where a buffet was recommended to us by one of the Saginaw Methodists, but it required a 30 minute wait, so instead we went across the street to a string of fast food restaurants: Jack in a Box, McDonald’s, Dairy Queen, Subway, and Texas Burger. I recall an unsavory taco experience at a Kansas City Jack in the Box on another mission trip with Shawn Karber. So Jack in the Box was a hard pass for me.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
I went to Texas Burger because I might never get a chance in my life to try Nolan Ryan’s Texas Beef Steak Fingers.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
They taste kind of you how you imagine.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
The next stop was Buc-ee’s in Madisonville, I’ve always been a big fan of Buc-ee’s. At least since Carla, Mom, Alexis, and I stopped at one on our way to see Elainie graduate in San Antonio.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
If you’ve never been to a Buc-ee’s, it is the single greatest gas station chain in the world. It is the exact opposite of that Road Ranger in Illinois.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
I wanted to buy a Buc-ee’s hat to make it my official Mission Trip Hat, but none of them were my flavor.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
The last 2-3 hours we drove through some major rain. But when we got to Vidor: BASKETBALL!

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
On Sunday night we worshiped and we prepared for the next 4 days of hard work.

Houston Mission Trip - 2018
Worship!

After the worship service I found out I was part of The Cowboys. At YouthWorks they split you up into several teams. You work with that team the rest of the week on chores and at your work sites.

The Cowboys consisted of:

Humble Narrator
Tiffany
Kari – from Missouri, but really Madrid, but really Boone (who turned out to be my cousin)
Anna
Jordan
Kolbe
Maci
Mackenzie
Megan
Ellie from Missouri
Jake from Missouri

In the next 4 days, the pictures will concentrate heavily on those people because these are the people I spent the majority of my day.

The Cowboys had breakfast prep on Monday, so I had to make an attempt to get to bed early, to rise early. Even though trying to sleep the first two nights of a mission trip is a fool’s folly.

Not pictured:

Kolbe really, really likeS the song CARAVAN.

The Town Sign Project Vol. 6

On Saturday I decided to look for Town Signs for THE TOWN SIGN PROJECT in the Story County area. Here is what I was able to track down:


Roland, Iowa
Roland, Iowa

McCallsburg, Iowa
McCallsburg, Iowa

Zearing, Iowa
Zearing, Iowa

St. Anthony, Iowa
St. Anthony, Iowa

Bangor, Iowa
Bangor, Iowa

Clemons, Iowa
Clemons, Iowa

State Center, Iowa
State Center, Iowa

Colo, Iowa
Colo, Iowa

Collins, Iowa
Collins, Iowa

Maxwell, Iowa
Maxwell, Iowa

Cambridge, Iowa
Cambridge, Iowa

Zook Spur, Iowa
Zook Spur, Iowa

Xenia, Iowa
Xenia, Iowa

A few things of note from this collection:

Roland has a “nicer sign” than the Roland Rocket sign, but if you think I’m going to choose a nice sign over a sign that celebrates one of the greatest Cyclones of all-time, you don’t know where you are.


Roland Town Sign
Velkommen to Not Making the Cut Sign!

Zearing used to have a sweet sign:


Zearing, Iowa

Then they replaced it with the lameness that is their current sign. This is the worst sequel since GREASE 2.

Bangor isn’t a town. I’d say it is a place where an agriculture company stores trucks and a park with a creepy swing set.


Abandoned

I literally couldn’t find anything that said Bangor. There were the remains of a sign post that may have held a sign at one time in the park. There is a Bangor church and cemetery just outside of what I would consider Bangor.


Bangor Friends Cemetery

I just can’t figure out why there are several signs directing people to Bangor, but nothing telling you that you are in Bangor. I don’t know another unincorporated town that gets that much love!

Zook Spur and Xenia are both ghost towns. The best way to describe them is that there are maybe 3 or 4 houses that are closer together than is normally the case in the country. Zook Spur is just south of Madrid. Xenia is just east of Woodward. I wish somebody cared about Jordan enough to put a sign up around there. Unfortunately, Jordan wasn’t too tough to not die.

I don’t know that I’ll have time to go sign hunting again this weekend. I start a bunch of consecutive weekends of graduations and birthday parties and more graduations and Mother’s Days this weekend. But we’ll see. We will see.

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When I road trip on SaturdayS I listen to NPR. If you’ve spent time in a car with me on a Saturday morning, you already know this fact.

If you know that fact, you also know that one of the purposes of this here blog is for me to store things that inspire me, so that I can reference them again at a later date. Sort of an online idea box.

While I was cruising around the back roads of Story County (I was desperately looking for a Bangor sign) I was listening to the conclusion of THIS AMERICAN LIFE. The episode began with the story of a group of students of color, mostly black, that were painted as anti-Semitic by the media after a field trip to see SCHINDLER’S LIST went awry.

While this story was fascinating and scary, it isn’t the story that hit home hardest with me. That was the last story of the show.

The last story of the show was about the experience of a man, who’s sister was killed in the World Trade Center on 9/11, visiting the 9/11 Memorial a few days before it opened to the general public.

Part of it I found really poignant and I think it will strike a chord with anybody that he been through tragedy, which means pretty much everybody.

I think now of every war memorial I ever yawned through on a class trip, how someone else’s past horror was my vacant diversion. And maybe I learned something, but I didn’t feel anything. Everyone should have a museum dedicated to the worst day of their life and be forced to attend it with a bunch of tourists from Denmark– annotated divorce papers blown up and mounted, interactive exhibits detailing how your mom’s last round of chemo didn’t take, souvenir T-shirts emblazoned with your best friend’s last words before the car crash. And you should have to see for yourself how little your pain matters to a family of five who just need to get some food before the kids melt down. Or maybe worse, watch that pain be co-opted by people who want, for whatever reason, to feel that connection so acutely.

There are three recording booths for people to tell their own stories of the day or remembrances of loved ones who were lost. A man exits one of the confessionals, sees me, shakes his head and says, “Amazing idea.” I enter, sit down, and stare at the screen and say Shari’s name and how I was 3,000 miles away that morning and didn’t even know she was working there until I got the call at 6:00 AM, and that I wish I had seen her more in those last years and remembered more about her and had something better prepared to say, and that I wished my kids would have known her, and that she’d think it’s pretty f*cking weird that I’m here talking about her to an invisible camera in the bowels of a museum dedicated to the fact that she was killed by an airplane while sitting at her desk. And at some point, the timer is up.

When this story was over, I just sat in my car. In Bangor, Iowa. Realizing that the way I look at certain museums has been changed forever.

You Ain’t Never Been in My Book and I Got a Problem with It, Why? ‘Cause You Acting Like You Read My Pages!

The world wasn’t ready for these GOVERNMENT pictures on Monday. I’m not sure the world is ready for them now, but I can’t hold them back any longer. Here are GOVERNMENT alternates:


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If you are wondering why the bird photos are considered GOVERNMENT, it is because those pictures were taken on Boone County Wildlife Conservation Areas.

The last picture should not be seen as an endorsement of the lottery. It is the stated position of Photography 139 and all of its employees and subsidiaries, that the lottery is a scam. It is a self-imposed tax that is designed to move the tax burden from the wealthy to the poor and poorly educated.

You’re welcome world!

04-19-08

The following images are from the folder 04-19-08:


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Spring Game

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Spring Game

By adding these pictures to the Photography 139 Photo Gallery, I was able to restore the following classic An Artist’s Notebook entries to their original glory:

LITTLE WHITE LYE BONUS


SPRING GAME

If you want to check out more pictures from Iowa State’s 2008 Spring Game, click on the link below:

2008 IOWA STATE CYCLONES FOOTBALL PHOTO GALLERY

Some of these pictures were taken as part of an ad campaign for Shannon’s soap company Little White Lye Soap. The rest are taken from the 2008 Iowa State Spring Game, obviously.

BONUS MEMORY

Racist Starbucks (as opposed to good Starbucks in Nevada, Iowa) has jogged a memory of mine that I’ve been think about lately.

(If you don’t know about Racist Starbucks, a Starbucks recently called the police and had 2 black men arrested who were waiting for a friend to meet them. The fact that Starbucks is racist comes as no surprise to me. I’ve long hated this company. I’ve never once been inside a Starbucks. I’ve unfortunately been drug through a Starbucks drive-thru a few times in my life. Thanks Bethany. You too Kim.)

In another life, when I was running a “restaurant” for the Evil Clown Empire I only called the police to have somebody thrown out of the “restaurant” once. However, I wasn’t even the person that did it. I wasn’t there when they removed him. I think I was running to another store to get product. I only heard about it later.

I believe it was an Iowa State football Saturday, so the store was busier than normal. A drunk homeless person had taken up one of our booths and then passed out. He was there for a couple of hours before the police were called to remove him from the store.

The man was still passed out when the police arrived. The officer grabbed the guy from the back of the head and slammed his face into the table. This woke the guy up and then they escorted him out of the store.

I wonder about what would have happened if I would have been in the store. I know I wouldn’t have taken kindly to the police slamming his head against the table.

I wonder what would have happened if the technology of today existed then. I have no doubt somebody would have videoed the event and it would have ended up on The Facebook, assuming that The Facebook was still for college students and hadn’t been ruined by old people and wasn’t funneling your personal information to the Russians.

I’m sure the conversation with the Son-in-Law (the incompetent boob that was my boss) on the following Monday would have been a hoot.

Next time we take a stroll down memory lane we will probably take even more of a look at some Little White Lye Soap commercial photography.

I’m a Mean Photog, Better Feed Me Fauxtogs or Feed Me Picts, Ah, Feed Me Both of ‘Em

As you may have guessed, I have a ton of alternative BLACK & WHITE images for the WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE. The world wasn’t ready for them on Monday. I’m not sure the world can handle them now, but I can’t hold them back any longer:


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Some of these pictures were taken on the north side of Boone. Some in my coop in the cube farm at the Computer Mine. Some on the way to Dickcissel Park. Some at the sculpture garden down in Des Moines. The picture of me blocking Jesse’s shot was originally taken by Bill. Shortly afterwards, a defeated and downtrodden Jesse retired from basketball.

I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that I have added an additional photo from Linda Bennett to the original post on the WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE on Monday. It somehow ended up in my spam folder. You can see the additional photo by clicking on the link below:

WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE – WEEK 133 – BLACK & WHITE

There are plenty more BLACK & WHITE alternates coming your way in the coming days.

But, don’t forget to come out to the Boone Pizza Ranch tomorrow night between 5-9 to support the Boone First United Methodist Youth Group. Just bring one of these flyers:




For everyone of these we get with a paid meal, Pizza Ranch gives us $2. American. There will also be tip jars available for you to throw some additional scratch in.

I hope you’re as excited to see me there and I am excited to see you there!

Roundball Oracles – Year 14

I hurt myself today
To see if I still feel
I focus on the pain
The only thing that’s real
The needle tears a hole
The old familiar sting
Try to kill it all away
But I remember everything
What have I become
My sweetest friend
Everyone I know
Goes away in the end
And you could have it all
My empire of dirt
I will let you down
I will make you hurt
I wear this crown of thorns
Upon my liars chair
Full of broken thoughts
I cannot repair
Beneath the stains of time
The feelings disappear
You are someone else
I am still right here

It is done. College basketball is over for another season.

In 11 days Iowa State football will hold their Spring Game. After that, the only sports worth watching until college football kicks off in 5 months is the NBA Playoffs. I’m not sure what I’ll do with my spare time. Maybe I’ll clean my house. Now I’m really depressed.

Who isn’t depressed?

Paul Golden, that is who! For the second straight year, he is cutting down the nets for the Roundball Oracles. His name had been added to the List of Immortals:

The List of Immortals

2018 – Paul Golden
2017 – Paul Golden
2016 – Michelle Haupt
2015 – Derek Dohrman
2014 – Brandon Kahler
2013 – William McAlpine
2012 – Lowell Davis
2011 – Carrie Baier
2010 – Mark Wolfram
2009 – Mark Wolfram
2008 – Mark Wolfram
2007 – Tim Peterson
2006 – William McAlpine
2005 – William McAlpine

One more trophy and he will tie Willy and Mark for the most crowns ever!

I held onto Paul’s trophy from last year, when in became apparent he might win again, so I don’t have a picture of Paul with his trophy yet. But when I do, I’ll share it here.

I do however have a picture of last year’s The Sara winner:


Shannon with her
Shannon with The Sara

However, Shannon did not have the guts to come back and defend her The Sara Title. Therefore, there is a new The Sara “Winner” this year.

“Congrats” to Robert Henning for being the last place adult, that tried to win. I have went over his bracket with a fine tooth comb and even though he picked Kansas to win it all, it would seem he was trying to win in good faith. He joins the List of Mortals:

The List of Mortals

2018 – Robert Henning
2017 – Shannon Bardole
2016 – Laura Priest
2015 – Derrick Gorshe
2015 – Sara Lockner

There were 35 entrants this year. A slight dip from past years, but that was to be expected with the lack of any local teams in the tournament. Most of us adopted Loyola as our team, since they were powered by former Cyclone Clayton Custer.

However, it was a clean, close competition. Michigan’s defeat of Loyola in the Final Four left it down to just Rachel and Paul battling it out for the trophy. Villanova’s complete shellacking of Kansas gave Paul the repeat.

But you didn’t come here to listen to any of that tommyrot. You want to see the final standings:

1 Paul Golden 248
2 Dawn Krause 243
3 Yours Truly 243
4 tim peterson 232
5 Michelle Haupt 232
6 Nate Miller 230
7 Jordan Toot 224
8 Corey Faust 223
9 Angie DeWaard 221
10 Rachel Johnson 219
11 Lowell Davis 215
12 Benjamin Baier 213
13 Derek Dohrman 205
14 Cathie Raley 204
15 Bill Wentworth 200
16 Sean G. 198
17 Linda Bennett 195
18 Jesse Howard 195
19 Olivia Baier 188
20 Toby Sebring 185
21 Russ Kennerly 184
22 Jackson Faust 182
23 Sean Clubine 173
24 Jason Baier 173
25 Micky Augustin 167
26 Brandon Kahler 166
27 Nader Parsaei 166
28 Andree Jauhari 165
29 Liz Nordeen 165
30 Carrie Baier 162
31 Laura Priest 158
32 FHMeiners 156
33 Becky Perky 152
34 Will Baier 148
35 Robert Henning 141

The good news is that next year is that the state of Iowa won’t be shutout of the NCAA Tournament. If nothing else, the first two “real” rounds will be held in Des Moines. Plus Iowa has a lot of young talent that will be back next year. Admittedly, they still have the same sub-par coach, but they should be good enough to go dancing for a short while.

Iowa State on the other hand will be one of the most interesting teams in the country. This year’s team was very young and was decimated by injuries. The only major loss from last year’s team is Donovan Jackson, which Kansas fans know, is a major loss. However, assuming Lindell Wigginton comes back (and almost everybody assumes he will), they return a future first round pick in Wigginton and fellow freshman stud Cam Lard. Plus you bring Babb and Solomon back from injuries. Bring back a big time contributor down the stretch in Zoran Talley. A much improved Terrence Lewis will fight for playing time with super impact transfer Marial Shayok and impact transfer Michael Jacobson. Then add stud freshman Talen Horton-Tucker to the mix. One guy you don’t want to sleep on is Zion Griffin. Plus they are adding Tyrese Halliburton and George Conditt. I don’t expect those 2 to contribute next year, but they will be huge in the coming years.

This will be the most talented roster since Iowa State had 5 NBA players on the roster a few years back. That team lost in the first round of the tourney. I expect much bigger things from the Cyclones next year. The future is bright in the Cyclone State!

03-25-08

These are the pictures from the folder 03-25-08:


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By restoring these photos to the Photography 139 Photo Gallery, I was able to restore the following classic blog entries to their former glory:

MY HAPPY EASTER
THURSDAY NIGHT WITH KOUNTERTOP (PT.1)
A NEW GIG
RELAY FOR LIFE

The picture of me dunking is not a photo trick or a lowered hoop, I’m sure.

I’m not quite sure why I took the religious photos. But I like them.

The Easter photos are interesting because this year we won’t be celebrating Easter on Easter for the first time that I can ever remember. Mom is heading to Virginia with her favorite child that weekend. I might have my own private Air Fryer Easter that day.

The pictures of Shannon are from when she started at United Way. She needed a head shot for some kind of press release or newsletter or to hang in the company bathroom. I’m not really sure. However, I am 100% sure that Shannon will continue to work at The United Way for the foreseeable future. She will probably retire from there.

Next week’s walk down memory lane will involve snow.

Roundball Oracles – Year 14

It is once again time for the Roundball Oracles NCAA Tournament Pool.

I want to start by saying that Paul and Shannon, your trophies for last years accomplishment and “accomplishment” are on order. They will be in your possession by the end of next week.

Here is the proof that I ordered the trophies:




The pool is your pretty standard pool. Pick the games. Pick the final score of the championship game. Win a trophy. This year, I’ll deliver on the trophy much earlier.

The pool doesn’t cost anything, but pride, but the winner gets a trophy and the last place adult (that tried) gets The Sara Trophy.

Here is a list of past champions.

The List of Immortals:

2017 – Paul Golden
2016 – Michelle Haupt
2015 – Derek Dohrman
2014 – Brandon Kahler
2013 – William McAlpine
2012 – Lowell Davis
2011 – Carrie Baier
2010 – Mark Wolfram
2009 – Mark Wolfram
2008 – Mark Wolfram
2007 – Tim Peterson
2006 – William McAlpine
2005 – William McAlpine

Last year 38 people took their shot at mortality. Paul Golden came home the winner. Shannon Bardole came home with The Sara.

Last Year’s Standings:

RANK TEAM NAME SCORE
1 Paul Golden 260
2 Frank Meiners 252
3 Angie DeWaard 247
4 Michelle Haupt 242
5 shawn lockner 238
6 Jen Ensley-Gorshe 231
7 Jorge Rios 231
8 Andree Jauhari 226
9 tim peterson 226
10 Jordan Toot 225
11 Carrie Baier 225
12 Toby Sebring 224
13 Lowell Davis 222
14 JJ Baier 221
15 Logan Kahler 220
16 Jason Baier 218
17 Dae Hee Yoon 213
18 Jackson Faust 211
19 Dawn Krause 209
20 Jon DeWaard 208
21 Nader Parsaei 204
22 Derek Dohrman 203
23 William Baier 202
24 Robert Henning 194
25 Christopher Bennett
26 Bill Wentworth 193
27 Rachel Johnson 192 36
28 Russell Kennerly 190
29 Nate Miller 189
30 Michael Augustin
31 Derrick Gorshe 181
32 Elizabeth Nordeen 164
33 Laura Priest 162
34 Corey Faust 160
35 Jill Gorshe 152
36 Shannon Bardole 149
37 Olivia Baier 143
38 Benjamin Baier 121

If you are interested in participating this year, drop me an email and I’ll get you hooked up.

If this post seems kind of low energy, don’t worry, Iowa State and my passion for the tournament will be back again next year!

Play4Kay

On Saturday night Iowa State had their annual Play4Kay game. As part of the festivities that had a banquet for cancer survivors. After the banquet, they had honored cancer survivors on center court and then they helped line the tunnel and gave the players high fives during player introductions.

My Mom was one of the cancer survivors that took part in the festivities. I took a few cruddy cell phone pictures from the night. Many of them are just Iowa State stuff from the inside of the Jacobson Building.


Cancer Survivor Night

Cancer Survivor Night

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Cancer Survivor Night

Cancer Survivor Night

Unfortunately, the Cyclones couldn’t pull the game out. The fell down by 25 and cut the lead all the way down to 2, but then Oklahoma State through up a prayer (that shouldn’t have counted, thank you shot clock operator) that fell in the final seconds to secure the win.

Here is a great tweet from @cyclonewbb. It shows the video that they showed on the video board while they honored the cancer survivors and shows video of the cancer survivors on the floor:


You have to be on the website to see the tweet. Or you can click on this link:


Play4Kay Video

My Mom shows up at about the 50 second part of the video.