Category Archives: Salt Lake City, Utah

Olympic Adventures: Part 2

Throughout the journey I could not keep myself from thinking how very odd it was that Kristin kept several restaurant quality meat cleavers in the sun visor of her automobile. Comments such as “you have no idea how badly I need a second spare ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ CD” did little to calm my nerves. Despite all of this, I managed to survive my Olympic adventure with my body and Pink Floyd collection completely intact.

Feb 15, 2002 6:30 PM

Kristin and I climbed into her car and headed out of Boulder. I love taking road trips because there is just so much time for me to explain my views on life to all the passengers of the vehicle without being forced to remove any of the countless tangents of my thought process. For example, I spent a large percentage of the drive to Cheyenne, Wyoming explaining how the turn signal lever in Kristin’s Geo Prizm is functionally superior to the one in my Saturn. In a more conventional social situation I would have gotten to the main points such as lever shape, blinker noise, and the force required to change signal states. As we moved north along I-25 I was able to cover all these topics while still having plenty of time to consider the optimal turn signal blinking rate (which remains unresolved) and how many times the turn signal should blink when changing lanes on the highway (I prefer 5 blinks myself).

Feb 15, 2002 8:30 PM

We arrive in Cheyenne, Wyoming to meet up with two of Kristin’s friends who started their trip in central Illinois. The plan was to meet at the local Denny’s. Before leaving, I had gone on the Internet and printed out a map along with directions for getting to the restaurant. This really helped out the situation since neither of us was terribly familiar with the town. The fact that the Denny’s had recently gone out of business did not help the situation. After contemplating our options, we decided to set up camp at the local Village Inn and wait for Robi and Troy to arrive.

A bacon cheese burger and a cell phone call later we were all at the same place at the same time. Kristin and Robi have been best friends since the beginning of time. Troy is Robi’s landlord and good friend. Out of the four of us, Troy is by far the biggest hockey fan.

Feb 16, 2002 4:45 AM

After driving all night long through Wyoming and Utah we arrived in Salt Lake City. Our plan was to sleep on the living room floor of some Kristin’s friends who lived in town. The fact that her friends had recently gone out of business did not help the situation. Oh, wait, I’m getting confused with the last journal entry. Walking into a strangers house at four in the morning and crawling into a mattress set up on the floor is a feeling I think I’ll never be completely comfortable with.

Having a three year old running around the place four hours after we got to sleep was not exactly normal for me either. Except for waking us up so early I have to say Tanner was a lot of fun. I’m pretty good at managing children I can physically pick up with one hand. He also had a lot of cool toys which meant I was willing to hang out with him whenever we were at the house.

Feb 17, 2002 9:00 PM

All of the planning, traveling, and playing with Tanner have finally paid off. We didn’t know until the night before that our tickets to the Women’s Hockey semi-finals would pit Germany against—yes, you guessed it—Kazakstan. Despite all of our cheering, the Kazak ladies were no match for the Germans and their blitzkrieg approach to ice hockey. The game ended with the German team winning by a score of 4-0. The German women advanced to the next round and the Kazakstanians face a long plane ride home to their homeland of funny hats and vodka enhanced “they actually let us play in the Olympics” Mamushka celebrations. My proposition to go console members of the losing team at a local drinking establishment was not well received by some of the other people in the group.

Feb 18, 2002 1:30 PM

We left the Olympics behind and headed back home to Colorado. Since we are traveling during the day this time around we got to see all the scenery of southern Wyoming with the benefit of generous quantities of sunlight. In all honesty it doesn’t really improve the situation. Perhaps the part of the country is best viewed in the infrared or ultraviolet wavelengths.

Feb 18, 2002 10:30 PM

After many, many hours in the car, we finally got back to my apartment in Boulder, Colorado. I really believe it was worth all the effort to see the game. Given my current financial situation, it will be a long time before I get to see anything like that again. Unless, of course, I can find someone to come with me on a road trip to Kazakstan.

Olympic Adventures: Part 1

Given certain lighting conditions I can appear to be a very busy man. The rest of the time the truth of my productivity is quite obvious. Yes, I’m part of the population who gives late night infomercials about space aged automobile engine lubricants their coveted 0.002 Nelson rating. Despite my incredibly hectic schedule, I have managed to violate the known laws of physics by tearing a hole in the space time continuum large enough to permit a brief trip to the upcoming Olympics. And I managed to do so with a surprisingly small quantity of after market engine lubricants.

While I’ve had enough negative experiences with the opposite sex to start my own television show (stay tuned on Fox for Cops, followed by another two episodes of Cops, followed by the brand new series “When Dates Go Bad”), every now and then something good happens when I’m out on a date. Kristin and I started things out by seeing the movie “Brotherhood of the Wolf.” The story centers around a dangerous monster roaming the French countryside. An extensive search of the area turned up little more than an unshaven and slightly hung over Andre the Giant sleeping rather peacefully in a remote ravine.

I must have done something right because shortly after our first date Kristin invited me to go with her and some friends to attend the Olympic women’s hockey event. After asking a few standard questions anyone put in this situation would politely bring up, I learned that one of Kristin’s friends in Utah changed her mind about going to the game. I quickly accepted the offer. It will keep me out of trouble for a while and I’ll achieve my life long dream of being an official Olympic alternate.

After consulting the Internet for driving instructions, we plotted our road trip to Atlanta, Georgia. After a little more research, it turns out they decided to move the Olympics to the state of Utah. Go figure. While it seems like a whole lot of effort, it actually works out better for us since we will be driving with the rotation of the Earth instead of against it. Once again we asked the Internet how to get to our destination. After thinking about it for a few seconds, a route appeared on the screen that takes us through northern Colorado, southern Wyoming, Idaho, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, and finally Utah. Once we enter our destination state, we will drive around in increasingly smaller concentric circles until our car runs into some lake. I’m not sure what the “vortex” option on the travel web site was talking about, but I really don’t have time to go back and investigate the matter in more detail.

Quite a bit of attention has been paid to the extravagant nature of the Olympics. None of this will be lost on me. Especially as I’m sleeping on a futon in an unfamiliar house full of people I have yet to meet in a state I’ve never seen in person. Or as I’m screaming across the complete mountain time zone in a late model Geo Prism. But I made it quite clear to Kristin that I sing along to the radio unless someone’s ears start to bleed (in which case I merely hum along to the music).

One of the biggest stories in the news involves the increased security surrounding all official Olympic events. Given the recent terrorist events this seems like a fairly reasonable course of action. While the Secret Service and FBI are reluctant to give out information regarding specific details of possible threats, the general concern involves an unplanned visit by a high profile Afghan resident who goes by the name Geraldo.

Is going on a road trip with someone I just met a very good idea? Are the Olympics as exciting as everyone makes them out to be? Should I leave my favorite CDs at home in case Kristin is really a homicidal maniac who plans on killing me and occasionally casually throwing bits of my chopped up body out the car window along I-80? There is only one way to know for sure. Stay tuned for next week’s story which will either be titled “Olympic Adventures” or “Sure I’m being chopped up into little pieces, but at least my Pink Floyd collection is safe at home.”