Monday, November 24, 2008

A Fine and Dandy Dusting of the White Stuff

I rolled out of bed this morning to my 5:20 am "Crew Alarm," and in my usual quasi-comatose state pulled on my spandex rowing shorts (oh so sexy) and a ratty old T-Shirt. As I was about to bundle up for the bike ride over to the Rowing Room, I looked out my 17th floor window, and what did I see? A whole mess of beautiful, white, perfect, swirling SNOW!

Man, this morning totally made me realize the one thing I was missing in Milwaukee. I really forgot how much I love snow. First of all, there are all the snow related activities: skiing, snowball fighting, sledding, frolicking, eating, etc. I love just walking around in the stuff and hearing it crunch under my feet. Secondly, snow makes everything look so beautiful. My poetic waxing (something rather unusual for me) about this subject should probably be hint enough to just how much I love snow. I figure that if it's going to be cold (which it has been), there might as well be a nice blanket of white covering the otherwise gray city. My only complaint is that there are no Chugach Mountains to stare at, capped with white. I guess the US Bank building will just have to do.

The view of the Milwaukee Club from Floor 17

As if this morning couldn't get any better, I am also now D-O-N-E: DONE with crew until I get back from Christmas Break. Wow...that one is still sinking in. Out with the 6-day-a-week workout schedule. Out with the 5:30 wakeups. Out with the going to bed early on Friday night for Saturday practice.

To top it all off, I left the dorm early today because I couldn't fall back asleep after practice (no class until 10!). While I was sleeping, someone had put pine garland all over the streetlamps on campus and hung wreaths everywhere. It looked so perfect in the snow. I commented to my roommate:
"How could you not like this snow! It's like going to school at Hogwarts! Hogwarts!"

Only 4 more classes until I head to Toledo. Look forward to lots of updates on Midwestern Thanksgiving.

One Lost out to go play in the snow!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Reform is at Hand! Later.

Just through I'd take the time to share a quote thrown out by my HIST 1 professor Dr. Tim McMahon. He is one of my favorite profs, what with the outdoor lectures, Halloween costumes, and blatant, in class support of the Brewers. Basically, just a real helpful and likable guy. We were talking about Martin Luther and the Protest Reformation and Dr. McMahon was trying to explain how Luther's reform message was perverted into violence by some part of society

"When I say the word over here: 'Protestant reformation,' it comes out on the other end as 'bowling on tuesday'"

Now I know why reform was so slow to spread...those Catholics used 9-pin to distract the heretics from acting!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Feedback/Check This Out!

As you may have color scheme for the blog. I wanted to try something a bit lighter than before and this is what I settled on. Leave feedback in the comment section and feel free to tell me what a moron I am for changing it...

Also, thanks to a lot of hard work from Free Spirits not named "me," the Free Spirit Blog network was an AMAZING new website. It's almost enough to make me feel like a real blogger! Anyhow, the Free Spirit Network will link the published and online work of the 2008 Free Spirits together. I highly encourage all to check the site out, it has tons of blogs that are way better than this one linked through it. You can also see many of them in the "Grizzly Bear Food" Link box on the right-hand sidebar. I personally draw a ton of inspiration from USC Transcribed and CSU Fort Report, so be sure to give Laura and Kelley a read.

is the link for the Free Spirit Network (which is still undergoing even MORE improvements!)

Here is the link for USC Transcribed

Here is the link for CSU Fort Report

And remember, if it's in the sidebar, I read it and it's good. Make sure to keep up to date on all the blogs over there!

Oh, and if you want to know more about the 2008 Al Neuharth Free Spirit Conference and it's members, click on the "2008 Free Spirit" ribbon in the upper right hand corner.

One Lost Out

Ring Out Ahoya: Marquette Basketball Update v. HBU and CSU

Here to provide you with brief game summery and lots of great photos for the Marquette Basketball Games you might have missed this weekend.

Friday was the home opener against Houston Baptist University, a former D-II team that is making the jump up to D-I this year. The game was never really close, with Marquette coasting to an easy 95-64 victory over the Huskies (a nickname that led to some Alaska jokes within the student section). The most noteworthy aspect of the blowout was that it marks the first regular season win for Buzz Williams, our new head coach. Buzz was an assistant last year under Tom Crean until Crean -"Judas"- jumped ship for Indiana this summer. I'm sure he's having fun with an unranked team while the Golden Eagles are a comfortable #16 or #17. Here is the game recap story from Marquette's Athletic Department website.

The view from the student section

Even Alaskan Bears like MU basketball!

Jon Plaza: pumped as usual

Nick and Liz: "It's game time!"

Timeout Festivities

Monday's game against Chicago State was much more close, but much less fun to watch. First of all, the student section, and for that matter, the rest of the Bradley center, was much more empty. The Monday evening tip-off and recent snowfall really killed attendance. Chicago State is much more highly touted than HBU and it showed. For the first half they were able to hang with Marquette, to a point. The second half of the game was PAINFULLY slow. The referees decided that any contact on either side of the ball warranted a whistle, leading to a mind-bending 68 free throws being hoisted on 56 fouls. CSU was able to pull within 9 pts. late in the second half, but a run from Marquette locked things up and all they had to do was wait out the myriad whistles. Final result, Marquette = 2-0 in 2008 after a 106-87 victory.

Lazar (32), Wes (23), and Dwight (12) set up some D

Dominic James hoists up a FT

Saturday's game is a big one against cross town rival University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Rumor has it that the Bradley Center is sold out and should be pretty packed. The matchup hasn't been particularly competitive in recent years, but there is some history to the two teams meeting (and a rumor of free T-Shirts for students that show up early!)

One Lost Out

Monday, November 17, 2008

A Small Reminder of Home

I was awoken this morning by the harsh sounds of my cell alarm jolting me out of not just sleep but out of a weekend haze that had been utterly therapeutic. It was two days of utter unproductively and lack of commitment, which, as it turns out, was just what I needed to reenergize me for the final push until Thanksgiving Break. A brief breakdown of how "stressful" my Saturday and Sunday were.

Friday Night: Basketball game vs. Houston Baptist at 7:30 (our regular season home opener). I screamed and jumped until my legs and voice were soar and went back to Straz around 10:00, singing bad love songs at the top of my lungs the whole way home (with other people...not by myself...)

Saturday: Woke up at 8:00 for an 8:30 crew workout. Was utterly SLAUGHTERED by said workout (no comment as to whether Friday night had anything to do with this). We rowed two 30 minute pieces, which other than just destroying my legs, also gave me quite the butt soreness from sitting on that tiny, hard seat. Got back to my room at 11, went to bed for an hour nap....that lasted until 3. Called Dad (like a good little bear cub), went to Cobeen for pizza to celebrate a friend's birthday (official birthday wishes to Dani), then went and saw Dark Knight for $2 at Varsity Theater.

Sunday: Wake up bright and early at 11, go to the Annex to watch the Broncos (another WIN, the week can't be so bad now), cloister myself in the library to spend the rest of the night writing an English paper. Much to my surprise, the paper sort of pops itself out in just over an hour and a half. Go back to Straz, spend the rest of the night doing other work or lounging to celebrate my success.

Basically, the last few days have been perfect, until that damn alarm rung this morning. I know I'm feeling better, both in terms of sleep and this pesky 3 week cold breaking, because I can actually conceive of myself being able to get through the week, which is a marked improvement over last week.

This morning also brought a stunning realization that I made mental note to write of. Back in Alaska, I could wake up every morning, look outside, and no matter what I saw in the sky, I knew it would be cold. Up until now, the opposite was true in Milwaukee. If it was sunny when I woke up that meant sweatshirt and a nice day. If it was cloudy, jacket because it was going to be chilly and windy. Today was the first day that it has been sunny and also brutally cold and windy. From the cozy confines of the Raynor Bridge (where I am currently plopped) the day looks no different from all those perfect summer ones I got to experience in August, but my computer tells me its 32 degrees out.

It's good to be back least in weather.

We have another basketball game tonight against Chicago State, a fact that is doing much to brighten my day. I will be sure to post recap and pictures of both that game and the Houston Baptist one in the next day or so.

One Lost out

Thursday, November 13, 2008

It's a Good Thing This Candle has Two Ends

In a movement of solidarity with my good friend and fellow blogger Laura Nelson this post will be on what is becoming an o'so familiar aspect of college life: The Long Night.

My friend Tom and I have come to this theory that college is, quite possibly, the worst place on earth to learn. We are given heaps of outside the classroom work and then thrown into a building with 150 other students our same age, and somehow this is supposed to be a productive work environment. It is basically impossible to do homework in the dorm, especially living in a quad. With people constantly popping in to say hi, talk, play video games, etc distraction becomes the rule rather than the exception.

Luckily there is the library, that last bastion of peace, quiet, and focus that I have come to rely so heavily on. Unfortunately, I have some chemical imbalance (which must come from dorm food, because it seems all of us have it) that prevents me from doing any serious work before 9:30 pm. That is why I am posting this. I am currently plopped in the library surrounded by "Der treffende Ausdruck" (my German book), Sophocles "The Three Theban Plays," Machiavelli's "The Prince," Soren Keirkagaard's "Either/Or," Albert Camus' "The Plague," my glasses, and one very large mug of mocha. I somehow need to read or work with all these book in the next three hours and I'm not sure how that is going to happen.

To complement my late nights, I now have two early mornings a week -- 6 am crew practice on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I am no longer burning a candle, but a blow torch. The highlight of my day may very well have been my two hour nap (the first one of the week) this afternoon. I've found a lot of college stereotypes to be blown out of proportion, but the late night idea is defiantly fully true.

And now, a brief list of things I've learned during late night study sessions:
  • The girls at "The Brew" are basically goddesses. They are probably more important to running this school than the president. After all, even Father Wild needs coffee.
  • Facebook is the anti-matter of work. It is literally impossible to do any substantive work with facebook running in the background
  • Falling asleep in the big library chairs is simultaneously the worst and best feeling in the world
  • Did I mention how much I love coffee?
A caffeinated and tired One Lost will now tackle The Prince...and out

Monday, November 10, 2008

In Fact You're Fanatical

That title is an excerpt from the song "Free Radicals," by one of my favorite bands, The Flaming Lips. This has no real bearing on this post, other than the fact that it is a moderately clever way to introduce a post about the first Marquette Basketball game of the season (the student section is called the Fanatics (get it fanatics...we are so clever here).

So Marquette is a really cool place. Lots of cool people, fun activities, good teachers; an all around great place to be. Basketball games, however, take this school to a whole new level. Maybe its our lack of a football team, maybe its the cold weather, but we all go CRAZY for Dominic James and Co. This season is especially exciting, what with the Golden Eagles being ranked #16 by the AP Poll, the return of what could possibly be the best starting backcourt in the nations, and the debut of our new coach, Buzz Williams. Predictions have us going to the Sweet 16, maybe even the Elite 8; but of course we all know that Marquette is National Championship caliber.

Saturday was just an exhibition, the team's only one of the season, and as you may have read before, we were playing a terribly intimidating and fearsome opponent: Colorado State...Pueblo. Yes, the Thunderwolves are a D-II team, and yes they aren't even that great of a D-II team, but it is a game nonetheless and after three months of not having a football team to cheer for the student body was ready to get behind the Eagles. I got to the Bradley Center around 12:30 for a 1:00 game. This was MUCH later than I would have liked to arrive, but thanks to a late crew practice and the Straz printer's inability to print my ticket I was running a little behind. Luckily, my roommates showed up at 10:15 and stood in line for two hours to save me a front row seat...thanks guys.

Being an exhibition, the game wasn't very well attended by non-students. Marquette games are usually fairly sold out, especially once Big East Conference play starts. They played a really cool video showing Marquette highlights throughout the ages (hearty cheers for Doc Rivers and Dwayne Wade...chorus of boos for Tom Crean). Father Wild, the University President, came by our section and said hi to my row, shaking some hands. I also got to be on the jumbo-tron before the game when the asked us to cheer really wildly for the camera. Forced enthusiasm? Yes. Very cool? Also yes.

The game was a blowout (94-73), through CSU-P was a really good 3 point shooting team, which made them look mildly more respectable. Some excitement at the end when it looked like we might break 100 points, but Buzz did the classy thing and reigned in the offense in the last few minutes rather than adding to the blowout. The team looked great for the most part, minus some spotty defensive play and the occasional rushed attempt on the offensive end. I'm sure its tough to play your game when you are more talented and athletic than your opponent, so I'm banking that when the competition is more even, the team will focus more and play up to their opponent.

The photos should give you an idea of what being a fanatic is like. Toward middle of the game I found a way to change my camera settings and make the photos lighter (thanks Justin).

A lot of standing, jumping, chanting, cheering, and "Ringing out Ahoya" for 2+ hours makes a fanatic tired, so we enjoyed a post-game victory sub at Potbelly's.

Next game is Friday. Its a regular season, non-conference game against Houston Baptist; another cupcake matchup. Nevertheless, you can guess who will be there.

One Lost Rings Out Ahoya with an MU RA-RA...and out.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Halloween, Hip Hop, and History

Drummed up a nice alliterative title to compensate for the lack of posts this weekend on Monday. Hopefully that makes up for all the abandonment issues all my readers have.

Halloween was GOOD. As previously stated, I planned to go as a unicorn, but when the all white long johns fell through and all that was available was red (for free...thanks to Katie from crew) I had to adapt. Solution: Thing One and Thing Two costumes with the Joe Marinelli. I was helped by the fact that the spirit shop sells perfect wigs for the costumes that will also be worn during basketball season (first game is Friday!). I was going to bring my camera but as you will see I didn't exactly have pockets to carry it in. Other costume highlights included: another set of Thing One and Thing Twos, Rod from Hot Rod, The Pope (fitting at a Catholic school), a whole rookery of penguins, and (the best part) NOT ONE SARAH PALIN!

Halloween was followed by an 8 am wake up to be at the boathouse by 9 to take the dock out of the water for the winter and clean of all the boats. Months of sitting in the Milwaukee River had made our launches (the motor boat the coach uses) DISGUSTING and it took several hours with high powered chemicals to scrub the grime off. That fun was followed by a good natured game of two-hand touch/"aggressive" two-hand touch football on the Quad with the 17th floor guys (plus a few others). Which brings me to Saturday night and ATMOSPHERE.

I went with Katie, Maggie, and Elise to see the man from Minnesota that makes all the people go crazy. For those of you not in the know, Atmosphere is a hip-hop group from Minneapolis that I like...a lot. He played a great show (4.5 hours with two opening acts!) and the energy in the theater was amazing. The only downside was the gigantic, thoroughly drunk man that kept shoving everyone and making an ass of himself (sorry for the language) until we got security to kick him out of the stage area. I returned to the room, legs and back completely dead to watch an episode or two of Battlestar Galactica (let the nerd jokes begin) on my computer.

To complete the trifecta promised in the title I now come to History. Dr. McMahon is officially the coolest professor ever. Monday and today have been B-E-A-UTIFUL; temps in the 60s and 70s without a cloud in the sky. McMahon according moved our history lecture outside to the garden-plaza-fountain area in front of St. Joan of Arc Chapel. There is something really cool about learning about the Hundred Years' War and Joan of Arc while sitting in the sun in front of a church she actually prayed at during that time. Probably one of the most surreal "Marquette Experiences" I've had to far."

But before I get too excited about my history class, another Marquette Experience starts on Saturday. BASKETBALL SEASON! I will be at the Bradley Center, ticket in hand, at one o'clock to watch the 16th ranked Marquette Golden Eagles take on...(drum roll)...the Colorado they are. We have a cupcake out of conference schedule, but it will still be fun to put on my wig and indulge in some good old fashioned school spirit (after all, no football here to care about).

More posts to follow. Time to go take a nap (6 am crew practice today = yuck)

One Lost out.