Hiking Grey Rock

As “luck” would have it, I managed to commit one of the last perfect biking days of the fall (beautiful and sunny with temp around 70) to hiking with a couple friends. Oh well, hanging out with friends is good, and I needed to get in my token yearly hike anyway. The Sister ™, the avid hiker, recommended Grey Rock, one of the most popular hikes in the Fort Collins area. Assured that “you have to hike this at least once if you live in Fort Collins” and that it was worth the hike for the views at the top, we headed up Poudre Canyon to the Grey Rock trail. Sadly, I lost my companions to a combination of equipment failure and ambivalence somewhere before 2 miles in. There was no way I was abandoning the hike at this point, so I soldiered on in a solo mission to the top. I made it quickly to the base of Grey Rock and headed off for the last .75 miles to the top. This would be the base.

The base of Grey Rock

The last leg, though short, seemed to take as long as the previous 2+ miles. I lost the trail for a few minutes before spotting the helpful cairns that would guide me as I scrambled around and over rocks to the top. The requisite “me at the summit” shot.

Me at the top of Grey Rock

And, The Sister ™ didn’t lie — the views are pretty good.

View from the top of Grey Rock

I hung out at the top for a few minutes, but the wind was making exposure on high rocks uncomfortable, and I really didn’t want to ruin the day by having to put on a jacket, so I followed another group out and headed down. I quickly lost them and made good time down the mountain passing several groups of climbers making their descent as well. My knees did not take well to scrambling back down the rocks, but overall the hike was fairly easy.

And, if you have a keen eye, you might have noticed the storm coming in at my back in the summit shot. Yes, today was 35 degrees, windy, rainy, and snowy.

General Random Television


I just saw Penelope Cruz do an impression of Salma Hayek. Hilarious.


Wow, that sucked.

I just upgraded from WordPress 1.2 to 1.5. And it sucked. A few words to the wise:

  • Back everything up (including WordPress files, database, and .htaccess).
  • Quadruple check that you’ve deactivated all plugins.
  • Delete your .htaccess file if you’re using clean permalinks.
  • Pause to pray to the WordPress gods.
  • If you’re as lucky as me, your main page will throw an error related to comments. Replace <?php include(ABSPATH . ‘wp-comments.php’); ?> with <?php comments_template(); // Get wp-comments.php template ?>.
  • DO NOT under any circumstances consider changing your weblog directory name “as long as you’re at it.” That’s just asking for much, much more trouble.

I’m not using the theme system correctly at this point, but that will be my next task. I’ll save it for when I really feel like scratching my own eyeballs out.


Hate Mongers to Picket in Montana

An extremely radical, hate mongering group has decided that Montana should be its next target. I will not link to the group, but search for Westboro Baptist Church and you will find their website. Why have they chosen Montana as the target for their hate? Because it’s apparently such a safe haven for homosexuals. On their schedule is picketing the Montana Supreme Court (according to them “the Supreme Court of the People’s Republic of Sodom”), various Helena churches (to them “apostate, pro-gay Arminian churches of Helena”) including the one I frequent, the University of Montana (because it’s “infested” with homosexuals), and Montana’s Lt. Governor John Bohlinger for his participation in a panel discussion on hate groups that took place at my place of employ.

The language they use is so heinous that I can’t bring myself to post it on my website. A cursory glance of their homepage is enough to make one vomit. I can’t wrap my head around the hate that this group is peddling. Among the items on their website — a counter of the days Matthew Shepard has been in hell, a counter of the days Diane Whipple has been in hell, and the exclamation of “Thank God for the tsunamis.”

It’s all sickening, and I can’t fully articulate my disbelief, horror, sorrow, and nausea at such outlandish, unfounded, and truly un-Christian hate. It’s sad that they don’t know that God is love — not hate.


My Red Kitchen

Red KitchenAid Stand MixerI love red. It’s a fact. I have a red car, half a closet of red clothes, red furniture and accessories — basically, a lot of red. Thus, it should come as no surprise that I am trying to collect all red small appliances. Of course, KitchenAid is my brand of choice and empire red my color of choice.

Through the Christmas generosity of my parents, I finally procured the highly coveted empire red KitchenAid Stand Mixer to go along with my matching toaster. And, my is it beautiful.

Tonight I broke it out for its first run to make white and semi-sweet chocolate chip cookies. It seriously rocks. Anyone still using a handmixer needs to think about laying out the cash for a standmixer. I love it, and I’m not sure how I lived without it.

Now on to the next red appliance — perhaps the blender?


taking inventory

My recent email blessings have prompted me to do some email account inventory.

1 Yahoo account
1 Netscape account (never used — signed up to get something else)
1 MSN account (again never used — given to me when I signed up for something else)
1 cable account (received, of course, with my cable internet hookup — never used)
1 work email account
1 Gmail account
1 ACM account (not used)
1 Beta Gamma Sigma account (not used)
up to 5 with my webhost (currently only 1 in use)
1 webmaster account for my parents’ site.

Grand total: 10!! (with possibility of up to 14)



I have upset the delicate balance of personalities in my household. Yes, that’s right. I apparently have recently forgotten my position as the one-who-lets-things-go-and-generally-tries-to-maintain- cheeriness-and-non-bitterness. It seems that now that I have figured out how to be assertive and stick up for myself, my roomies are upset with me. Well, scratch that. Roomies X and Y might be worried about the rocking of the ship. (Note: they may read this, but I don’t really care right now. Although I might later). I take a lot of crap from my housemates. Don’t get me wrong, I dish out quite a bit as well. Lately, I’ve had the distinct, nagging feeling that there are discussions about me going on behind my back. Y’all know what I’m talking about. I can sense it, and it’s a little unsettling. I have been asserting myself in small ways for a little while now. However, it all came to a head on Friday. Housemate X and I had planned to go workout at 6 am (our usual time). I struggled out of bed and wandered downstairs to make sure X was up and about. She was not. She then told me she was not planning to get up and go. So there I am, fully dressed, shoes and droopy, tired eyes in tow, she’s telling me she’s not going. Well, screw that. I don’t HAVE to go to workout at 6 am on Fridays since I am free to go in the afternoon. I got up to go workout at freakin’ 6 because X had to work later and this was the only time to go.

Obviously, this wasn’t going to fly. I told her so. She gets upset and turns it on me with “Ok Swan. I’ll freakin’ get up.” etc, etc, something about guilt tripping and all in an almost sleepy yell. I said something about not turning it on me though it is a little hazy in retrospect. Anyhoo, later that night I said something to other roomies about X probably telling them a little story about the morning. They of course respond that, yes, they had gotten an earfull about it. I tried to tell them my side, but they didn’t want to hear anymore of the story. So obviously X is recanting tales and my side is lost in the ballyhoo. Even now, a couple days later, X seems a little distant like she is still upset. I say screw that. I did nothing wrong. Oh, perhaps, I should mind my position in the hierarchy. Whatever.


I win

Wahaha. I have defeated the blogger giant. Two days, two entries. Aren’t you proud?

My ponderance for today is, why can some people just not enjoy life? For example, I was reading RWs Melissa’s most recent blog entry today, and she just kept going on and on about sad things in her life. I will be the first to admit that my life has been a cake-walk compared to 95% of the world, but is it impossible for her to look at anything optimistically? I don’t believe she is depressed, but she finds darkness (and many times racism) in most things. Her birthday was recently and she lamented it. I love my birthday. I feel like the most special person in the world. And I think most people, whether they will admit it or not, feel the same way.



I am in the beginning stages of the realization that I am the worst blogger ever. One would think that it would not be that difficult to write an entry at least once a week given that so many others find time to do so every day of the week. Perhaps I am the most boring person in the world, though, and, thus being so boring, have nothing on which to comment. No funny goings-on in my life. No stupid housemate stories. No rantings. Oh wait, I can always come up with those– I just don’t have the ambition to take the time to put it all down. Well, maybe I can….

I am entirely sick of school. Having already endured two tests this week (International Finance and Promotional Mgmt), I have overreached my attention capacity for anything related to school. As I wrap up my 17th straight year of education, I am burned out. Burned out like a 30-minute-old light bulb from the dollar store. I have developed a late-stage, debilitating sort of attention deficit disorder. I am not lying when I say that this customized ADD is absolutely annoying. I don’t think I can file this innane illness at University disability services, and, of course, my professors will probably not accept this self-described and diagnosed disorder. In conclusion, I blame the bad grade anticipated on my finance test on the ADD. Darned ADD anyway.


Economics or Bust

It simply amazes me how many people do not understand simple economics. I think every person should have to take an economics course before being able to register to vote. Even better, they should have to also take a political economy course. I guess I’m just a frustrated economics geek. Speaking of geeks, has the coolest travel mug emblazoned with the saying “No I Will Not Fix Your Computer.” I need one of those, or better yet, one that says “No I Will Not Create A Website For You For Free.” Just because I know HTML doesn’t mean I’m into pro bono work. I’m one of those capitalist pigs.

On a different note, I think I’ve found a webhost for my future site, For a very minimal monthly payment, I can get all of the features I want (read: JSP – may not ever incorporate it in my site, but I’d like to leave the option open). I will probably also put my parents’ business site there as well. I would reveal the host’s name, but why endorse them or give them advertising until I’ve tried it out? I don’t need the one person who may visit my site in the next month, reading the name and being mad at me when it doesn’t work out.