Start Again

Maybe blowing this place up will cause me to get started again? Welcome to the new OA, now brighter and responsively designed! Let me clean up the corners and closets a bit before I get started again, but know that I’m still hunting every beer in the world, and running more than ever. So not much has changed, regardless of extended absences. I do miss having a place to say things that get people cranky, though.

Current addiction:

Box Full of Letters

“I just can’t find the time to write my mind the way I want it to read.”

I should be finishing up the backlog of vacation related posts, yet I’m somehow unable to continue doing it. I’ll likely get to it, if for nothing else than I like to revisit previous trips later, and remind myself of what I enjoyed the first time around. But all I can think about right now is passion.

  • I have a lot of passions, those close to me know this. I love craft beer, and crossed my 700th trial off the list on this trip. I drink it, I collect it, I store it in a cellar, I review and rate them, and I’ve even started dabbling in brewing it myself.
  • My favourite sport, at risk of deportation, is baseball. The mental aspect of pitcher vs. batter has always intrigued me. Further, baseball stadiums hold something in their atmosphere you can’t find in other sports. Thus, I’m doing all I can to visit every park in MLB.
  • I cook. A lot. My favourite show at 8 years old was Wok With Yan. I started cooking without assistance a little younger than that age. I’ve run my brother-in-law’s restaurant. I’ve even written an ebook of recipes for a friend’s health book.
  • I’ve played guitar since 1990, rarely travel without one, and have written and recorded for decades.
  • Health, running, nutrition, photography.. they keep lining up.

But if you asked most people what Rick “is addicted to”, chances are the answer surrounds the Internet or social networks, specifically Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare. The web was always a social tool for me, from days on newsgroups to chat boards to ICQ (948133!) to MySpace I’ve always been passionate about meeting people online, sharing of information and resources, and building legitimate relationships there. Yet this passion that has turned into a career has directly come alongside a lack of passion to do what brought me to the dance – blog. When it meant nothing I could blog daily, over 3,000 times for over a decade. Today? The elongated lapses continue. Have I just replaced my venue of choice for opinion and editorial? Or am I just seeking a new muse?

I can say this – I need inspiration, and I realize that. The last time I felt it was sitting in a cantina in Rocky Point, Mexico discussing social media with a total stranger. How do I bottle that?

Eastern Road Trip 2010: Day Two

I have spent days driving. That’s what it seems like. Going back in time to keep these in order, and I will return and update with images when time allows..

Woke up at the Fireside B&B to a solid breakfast from our friendly host. It’s a very nice B&B in Lexington, MA outside Boston, a short drive from the Alewife station that brings you anywhere you want to go via the T. We packed up and hit the road running, off to conquer Cambridge, which we had sadly run out of time for in 2006. I continue to adore Boston, it’s everything a city should be and just full of character. Cambridge is different, a town built around the university it seems, and with lots of eclectic charm. I should note first, however, that I crossed off a life list item I didn’t anticipate I’d get the chance to.

Many years ago a coffee machine was created called the Clover. The Clover would offer a new way of single-cup brewing that made the best cup of coffee possible, and indy cafes were picking them up to further compete against the big guys with a better product. Which is about the time Starbucks swooped in and bought Clover, thus eliminating that as a chance. Now we fast forward many years later and select stores in the States have now received these machines where you can select from the best of the best in coffee and have a single cup brewed in sexy fashion. So, I enjoyed a cup of Kona and watched it made. It’s quite something to see.

Now, Cambridge:

  • Small town, walkable, easy to make your way through. Boston and the surrounding area are walking cities, it’s the best way to see them
  • Our second attempt to eat at Mr. Bartley’s Burger Cottage, again thwarted. Last time they want on vacation, this time closed Sundays. Argh.
  • The Harvard grounds are awesome to see, and I got my pic taken on the giant steps that look like they were in Ghostbusters. :)
  • I got my Yard Bird badge on foursquare. Most of you don’t care, but it was on the list. :)
  • Ate at Cambridge, 1. Pizza was alright. We seem to be having an issue with good service on this trip.
  • Don’t ever drive in the Boston area. You’ve been warned.

So as part of the fun of seeing Cambridge we, of course, got a late start for Portland, Maine. Mary wanted to see the beach so we diverted ourselves to the very nice Ogunquit Beach in Maine. Kind of wish we’d known about this sooner as it may have been a preferable place to stay the night, was really quite nice. But alas, after a little run through the water we were off. Got in to Portland late and secured my time with Josh Christie for our long-awaited beer trade. I’ll post more details of that later, they’re all still in the car and there was certainly some awesome and unfamiliar new names for me to enjoy later. On his and the AAA book’s reco we hit the Sebago Brewing Company where I enjoyed a blue cheese burger, their Lake Trout Stout, Fryes Leap IPA and Single Batch Series Dark Wheat Project. All were enjoyable in their own way.

And thus ended day two. Not as much driving as day one (or day three), but still a hectic pace that may plague us for the entire trip. 5,000 km in 10 days! Argh.

Hello New Day

And thus ends the hiatus. I believe it was almost 13 months ago after my final post from Chicago that I finally gave up this blogging thing for a bit. 3,000 posts over 15 years and I just needed a break. But, alas, I found myself longing for the chance to type once more and employed the services of Rob to help me set up this fine looking specimen of a site here.

And with that I’m back, hopefully for the long haul. I post today with a purpose – Paul and I are off this morning for our annual baseball trip, and it’s a crazy one this time around. We leave today for Phoenix where, tomorrow, we’ll take in a D’backs game. There’s a bit of a surprise happening beforehand that I’ll be sure to blog about. Then Saturday it’s off to Puerto Penasco, Mexico for an RCPM concert. In between, lots of stuff. Follow along with the Foursquare check-ins on the right there, and we’re hoping for nightly images and videos to share.

Welcome back, friends!