Sunday, December 14, 2014

A Day-Trip to Washington, D.C.

M, J, and I paid a short visit to our nation's capital today. (Through the magic of internet live-streaming, of course!) We were at the Washington Hilton Hotel for the USA Powerlifting American Open Championships. That's a contest where guys pick up very heavy things called barbells, to see how much weight they can lift in various events without (1) any wardrobe malfunctions or (2) any body parts flying off. M thinks it's also designed to find out how close you can come to wrecking your hips, knees, back, and shoulders without actually doing so.

Here is the contest's official logo, which you can buy on a tee shirt if you like:

The reason we made this whirlwind cyber-trip to D.C. was to watch J and M's grandson (and my adoptive nephew), Mike Taylor, compete. There were three events. While they were unfolding and Mike T was doing his thing, M was busy taking "screen-shot" pictures via something on the computer keyboard called "Print Screen."

The first event was the squat, where you start with a heavy barbell on your shoulders, then squat all the way down with it, and then stand back up until your knees are locked and your back is straight. (I know, good luck with that, right?) Here is a pic of Mike T doing his first squat, with a weight of 496 pounds (in the picture, he has already squatted and returned successfully to the standing position):

His second attempt--also successful--was 523.6 pounds. M didn't get a picture of that one, as he is still learning the ins and outs of Print Screen. Mike's third lift was 534.6 pounds, which was a new personal meet record for him. We got a screen-shot of it, but a friend of Mike's managed to take this video (to see it in bigger format on YouTube, go here):

The second event was the bench press. In this one, you lie on your back with the barbell extended straight up over your chest, then lower it to your chest, and then extend it back up again, until your elbows are locked. Mike T successfully did this at 314.2 pounds and 330.7 pounds, but missed at 347.2 pounds. Here is a screen-shot of his 330.7-pound lift:

And here is a YouTube clip of the same lift:

The final event was the deadlift, which is possibly named for how you feel when you get to it. Here the idea is just to get the weight up off the floor and rise to a standing position with your back straight and knees locked, holding the pose for a couple of seconds. Mike T accomplished this with weights of 534.6 pounds and 578.7 pounds, before missing at 600.8 pounds. His lift of 578.7 pounds was another personal meet record. Here's a screen-shot of that lift:

And a YouTube video of it:

Mike's top weights for the three events totaled 1,444 pounds (a third personal record), which earned him an overall second place for the championship. Here are a couple of pictures of him with his silver medal:

Crikey, Mikey! Well done! Conflatulations!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The Emperor's New Hat

Check out M's snazzy new headgear. It's called a Glengarry cap, and he ordered it from someplace in Scotland. He bought it to wear with his kilt, but the weather's still too hot here for that. So for illustrative purposes, a Hawaiian shirt will have to do. Once he has the whole suit on, he'll look more like that nutcracker.

Oh--and that round metal thingy on the side is a Boyd clan badge.

Monday, November 3, 2014

What's in a name?

Maybe more than we know.

For Halloween last Friday, Jenny dressed up as Charlie Brown. We all thought she looked pretty cool:

By the way, that thing in her hand in the bottom picture is not a treat from the litter box, but a rock that some crabby old lady put in her candy bag.

So where was I? Oh, yeah--then just to shake things up, what do we see in this morning's paper? This!

Well, Jen, you had the look just perfect for a little while.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Auntie Julia, it's your birthday again!

This year I hired a string quartet to entertain you with some variations on a fine old theme! If you prefer to watch it on YouTube, click here. Mike, Jeannie, and I all hope you have a wonderful day!


Monday, September 29, 2014

We went to the beach this past weekend. It was very wet.

With rain! We heard on the news that we had eleven inches of rain overall and eight inches in just a 24-hour period.

With not much to do except stay in the house, I spent lots of time on the big couch. Once while I was dozing, M snapped this "ussie":

He and J spent lots of time looking out at the rain:

J also talked on the phone and looked up stuff on her iPad:

By Saturday afternoon, it cleared enough for M to get down onto the beach, where he took a picture of the house where we were staying:

On Sunday morning, the sunrise finally featured a rising sun:

All in all it was a nice trip. To see more of our pictures, follow this link to M's "Stormy Weather" Flickr album.