Bryan's Little Corner

Welcome to Bryan's Little Corner 

Friday, June 29, 2007

55Flash Fiction Friday

Today is his last day of freedom. He must cherish his moments. Tonight will be the night he will always remember or is that a night he wishes he could forget? Time to live his life to the fullest extent as tomorrow, with the two simple words, “I do”, he will become a married man.

This is a 55Flash Fiction. A small group of us try and post one every Friday. If you would like to know what it is all about see the link on my sidebar. It is not that hard as it is only a 55 word short story you are putting together. No one will yell at you if you fall short a few words or spill over. Consider giving it a try.

I will be heading down to Kentucky. My best friends Son is getting married tomorrow. Tonight is the rehearsal and who knows what else. And no, in the 55 above I am not saying getting married is a bad thing. I think it is just traditional to tease someone about it. Probably not a good idea as more than one person has bolted from weddings in the past, but not these two.

I am looking forward to the two of them getting married.

First because I get to use my nice shinny camera equipment and see how everything works. Second, and more important, I have been around Nick all his life, 1 week at a time, and have watched him grow up from his Mom being pregnant with him through to graduation from college and now him getting married. He is a wonderful individual and I so look forward to his future in music education where ever he ends up. He has had a passion for music for some time now and this will be wonderful to see where he takes that. I know his students are going to love him.

Finally, and this is going to sound real weird, I have been accepted in as if I am family with my friends. I have been Uncle Bryan forever. Only once did they ask if I was really their Uncle and I said No but if they wanted to continue to consider me their Uncle or even if they would rather not, either would be fine. Well I am proud to say I am still Uncle Bryan.

Anyway one thing happened. The very first time I met Mallorie, his wife to be but only girlfriend at the time, she welcomed me in so warmly. That meant a ton to me because, like I say, I am not really family. She certainly did not have to do that. She won me over in that very instant and I have enjoyed getting to know her ever since. *wipes tears from eyes* Sorry, must have gotten something in my eyes.

So I will be gone and busy the next several days until I return Sunday night. I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend. Oh and one more thought. Can’t we all get along? I mean Texas, you are getting all that rain you do not need. Can’t you share some with California to help with the fires? I mean really, you think you would just do that on your own. :)


Wednesday, June 27, 2007

G-Man is Not Michael Moore

I bring to you a little something to think about. If you do not know G-Man (and who does not know G-Man?) you can find him over here.

Now he has been compared to Michael Moore. I present to you exhibit A

And how about exhibit B

And finally exhibit C

Now while there may be some resemblance, there is no comparing the people themselves. And as to the looks, hands down, G-Man wins. I do not know, I just do not think I see a lot of resemblance here.

What do you think?

A Little Humor

I thought this was funny enough it needed to be shared. Happy hump day.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Ride Like the Wind

I heard a funny little commercial today. It was for Citgo gas, a station I am personally boycotting so maybe I am being a little critical here. Anyway the commercial appealed to us to fill up our tank and just drive to no where in particular. It said several other things that did not stick with me but this did.

Lets see. Oil companies are making record profits, are they not? Gas is back to where it was this time of year last year but not before hitting an all time high way above where it had ever been before. When did that occur? Why over the holiday. They said it was because of huge demand. Was it? I remember a lot of people changing their plans and staying close to home over the holidays. Yes I am sure consumption went up but I do not think it was as bad as they said. Of course there is a lot more that drives gas prices like refinery problems which there were problems at the time but isn’t there always refinery problems?

What I find odd is pushing us to just drive, drive and of course use up more of their product. I do not know about you but I am not driving as much as I have but I am not going to let this stop me from doing things all together, it is kind of in between. Now I guess I am suppose to just fill up my tank and head up North, take a turn and visit friends in Minnesota, go see the west and who knows what else just because a company who is selling me my gas says to do it.

OK, I guess I should end this. Can you tell I was having a hard time finding something to write about today. I tried three other things and erased all of them. I almost erased this one. Anyway time to go get ready for work so I can fill up my tank (twice at least) and make a treck to Kentucky over next weekend. Looks like they win after all.


Friday, June 22, 2007

55Flash Fiction Friday

Unlike produce
you can’t thump them or squeeze them.

You can’t smell them or shake them.
You can’t even pinch them.

The best way to find one is to be one yourself.
When you do find one you
need to do what you can to keep them.

Friends are just to precious to risk losing.

Sorry to dine and dash but busy, busy, busy at the moment. If you would like to do a 55Flash Fiction Friday and want to know a little bit about it look for the link on the sidebar or click on Susies the Boss link as most people check in with her once they have done one for the week. Have a wonderful day.


Thursday, June 21, 2007

MIS NASCAR pictures - Part 2

And now the concolusion ... Here you see the cars all lined up ready to get the race underway. I believe the next time around the pace track came in and the race was underway.

Here is one of the better pictures of the topless men running around there. Enjoy ladies, enjoy.

Here we have a picture of one of the trucks. It turns out this will be the winning truck later in the afternoon.

Here you can see the pole in the background. This lists the order of the top 10 drivers to finish the race.

Here is the other leader board. NOTE that this board has the average speed recorded to. I saw speeds up to 184 something at points.

Here is the winner in the middle of a burnout.

Look at the smoke. Look at the crazy people just standing there. What if he slipped of the break? How could they do that. In saying that, I wish I were them.

Believe it or not the truck is inside all that smoke.

And here we have the aftermath of burning out.

And there you have it. A quick couple of sets of pictures. I think I covered what I mentioned below. We have the drunk, the bomber, the shirtless guy, the porta pits. Yep, I think I have it all.

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MIS NASCAR pictures - Part 1

I could not believe it. I filled up my hard drive. It is huge but I managed to fill it up. That and I had to take away the blue tint so ... at last, a few pictures from NASCAR. Lets start out with a '57 Chevy I believe. I had to take a picture of this car as I really love it. That and I was born the same year. Why is it the car is a classic, I am just an old fart?

Now these two I just had to take. They went together well. They were on one of the many trailers containing merchandise that you just needed to have.

One for G-man, Lime, LittleWing, MilkMaid and who ever else I may have missed. It looked more impressive in person.

This one was for me ... or was that Tony ... maybe G-man too. Hummmm! Just racing merchandise, honest!

And here is about the best picture I took of the really drunk guy. I am afraid I had the camera set real wrong so I had a hard time fixing it. Something about shooting in bright sunlight at ASA 1600. Stupid, stupid, stupid. Notice the beer keg on the head, the big beads, and the beer can in the right hand (it is hard to see). You can not tell how wasted he is in this picture but believe me, he was.

OK, I had to toss this in. It over looks the area outside the gates into the actual race. So why did I include it??? If you look on the right hand side, just above half way up, you see something green/blue. Those would be the porta-pits. I did not take a picture of them on purpose, it just happened to show up when I looked at what I had.

Here is part of the lineup. It shows what the trucks look like, the pit crews lined up, and part of the Michigan International Speedway (the place where the race was held) sign.

Here is the B 17 bomber. If you look at it, the propellers are not moving. How do you think the plane stayed up? Also, if you look close enough, the bomber doors are open.

Later I will pick up where I left off.

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

An Excerpt or Two From the Weekend

Saturday was NASCAR truck day. We got there about 10:30 am for the 3:00 pm race. We found our way to where my Sister was suppose to work and then wandered around looking at all the different trailers. There was merchandise galore. There were many different NASCAR race cars. There were sponsors everywhere. Want some shampoo? ... here, have three. Let's see how fast you can remove and put back on a tire. Oh and by the way, if you had one of our road side memberships we would be doing this all for you. Oh and come enjoy some nice air conditioning and ice cold water if you are a member. Lets see how fast you can use your DeWalt tools to screw in all these screws ... oh and wear these DeWalt eye protective wear.

We went all over the area and pictures were take of my niece to be sure and cars and ... uh ... well a few other things. I tell you there were some lovely looking ladies there, a lot of topless ... guys that were just OK at best and would have done better with a shirt on, more than a few drunken people and at least one totally smashed person. The latter I was watching to try and decide if this person was really this toasted or was he faking it. Let me tell you, if this person was faking it he should have been given a Grammy right there on the spot. He was swaying back and forth, front and back. He seemed to stay still then suddenly, as if he lost his balance, head in a different direction until he caught himself and stopped for a second. I have never seen a better drunk in my life. The few women he did manage to go up to seemed to tolerate him OK. Makes me wonder how he managed that. Anyway let me finish the picture of this person. Hey had on his head what appeared to be a phony keg. He had on shorts and no top. He was a burnt little critter. He had on huge beads like they wear for Mardi Gras but much bigger. I was so amused by all this I forgot to look for tattoos but I am sure they were a plenty (not that I am picking on someone with tattoos but it just fit in with the crowd that was there).

One of my favorite parts of being there ... I found the porta-pots. I had to go so bad and those suckers were well hidden. For as large as the place was there were about 20 of them lines up opposite of where I started looking and maybe 6 where were first came in. I knew where that was but it would have been a walk.

So I started walking around this place like a rat in a maze looking for cheese. Go a little ways away, not see anything then come back. Head out in a different direction again and again, each time a little further away until I FOUND THEM! I never thought I would be so happy to find the toilet in my life.

Well my Sister got of early because they were looking for people to sell insurance to people. Though she works for AAA, she works somewhere down the travel branch and does not even sell packages to people. So after about and hour she called and we met up. After a little refreshment we tried to get into the track. Sorry Mr. Brother in Law, no backpacks allowed. Either leave it with lost and found or take it back to the car.

30 minutes later the BIL returned from his trek to the car. We were able to get in and in the process noticed others with backpacks on get in. It turned out CLEAR backpacks were OK. I suddenly had thoughts of CLEAR clothing but decided to keep it to myself.

We got into the track about 1 hour early and saw the NASCARS taking laps in preparation for Sunday's race. There actually was one occasion where two cars rubbed against each other and several walls were rubbed but nothing to bad. Then the trucks were wheeled into place. There was plenty of pomp and circumstance. There was a fly over by a old B 17 bomber. I got some good pictures. Speaking of which, I had the shutter set so fast that the propellers were stopped and not even blurry. Amazing. There was the customary "Gentleman, start your engines" and almost all the engines came alive. A few took a little attention but they too started.

The pace truck got out in front and a second pace truck was half way through the pack. They slowly pulled out into turn one of the track and started the first of about 3 laps before hitting the pits and the 100 lap, 200 mile race was under way. I picked truck number 09. Not truck number 9 but 09. That is confusing I tell you. I do not follow BASCAR so I have no idea what I was doing and it showed. I think 09 was in 8th place once and the rest of the time he was back in 12th or even further back.

Tucks would hit the pits and other times they would just head into garage meaning they were done for the day. I have never seen that as I am used to Indy or Cart and they stay on the track. Several trucks took themselves out. Slowly my truck kept getting better and better position. If the race went on long enough I think 09 would have won.

In the end the person driving 6 won and we were treated to him really burning out. At one point he was pointed straight into the stands and just really lit them up. Smoke was everywhere and then, nowhere as he disappeared into a cloud of smoke. He then came out of the smoke and headed to the winners circle and we headed for the exit. A nice 15 to 20 minute walk later and a much longer wait and we were FREE for about 5 miles before it backed way up. All and all not a bad day. Cap that off with a nice swim and ahhhhh! I guess tomorrow I will say something about golf as this was a lot longer than I intended it to be.

Happy HUMP day everyone.

Friday, June 15, 2007

55Flash Fiction Friday

It happened a long, long time ago
in a galaxy far, far away...

They kept it a secret
to both you and I

You represent ultimate good
I represent all that is evil

But this you can not deny
like it or not

You know deep down in your heart
Luke, I am your Father

I could not help it. I kept flip flopping on what to do a 55 on this week and if finally came to me. This is Father's Day weekend, at least here in the States. I just had to incorporate it in there somewhere. As I tried to clear out my mind (OK, it was already pretty empty but shhhhh) I could not help but think of Star Wars and the one line, Luke, I am your Father. Aha, I have a tie in.

Wishing all you Dads out there, and even you single Moms that are doing it all, a very nice Fathers Day. I will be back home celebrating the day with my Father. Let me warn you, Sunday morning my Sister and I will be taking our Dad on his traditional Fathers Day golf trip. Nothing major, just a local par three golf course. Should you get anywhere near by please do listen up. Should you hear anyone yell DUCK or FORE, run, don't walk for cover as it will most likely be me with another wild ball. A golfer I am not. Par is 29, I will most likely have a 60. Yep, I have a BAR par. What is a BAR par? About double what par, that is a BAR par. I know my Dad enjoys it and hey, that is what it is all about. Afterward over to my Sisters for some swimming and BBQ and we have the makings of a nice day.

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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Lunch with the DSO

Yesterday afternoon was fun. I sure wish had got there sooner. The Detroit Symphony Orchestra came to Lansing to play a mini concert. I believe what they are doing is touring the state to try and get people introduced to the group and interested in coming to see a performance. That and also to get people to support the arts.

Now let me tell you, I absolutely love the Symphony group that Signs #1 daughter plays in. They are really pretty good. But oh my, I fell in love with the songs I heard the DSO play. The french horns were awesome. Sorry, I have a thing for french horns since I played 3rd and 4th chair parts all through high school. Never that good but you know what, it gave me the love for music and the french horn specifically. They are such a versatile instrument and the different ways they can be played. Gotta love ringing the bell ... no, well I do.

Anyway I am getting more and more used to strings and they were wonderful. It sounded like that had hundreds of them there and I am not exaggerating. I also heard this one part and, after listening for about 30 seconds I said that just has to be a ... and then I saw the harp. It was magical sounding and was most of everything I heard them play. I think part of it was the fact they were miked and I heard some of it over the speakers and some of it live. It was rather interesting. They were building to an ending and building and they built to closing with God Bless America and closed with a John Philip Sousa march. Perfect, just perfect ending.

Sure wish I would have brought a camera but I forgot that they were touring around. So what did you do for lunch? Hope it was as wonderful as mine. The only thing that could have toped that was a lunch meeting with Sign and G-man. Go check out their lunch meeting. Well at least the DSO was a nice condolence prize.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Word Verification Ritual

Is it just me? Am I alone in this? You know those word verification thingies. Some of them are simple like


Wow, I can do that. Others are much worse like


Well it feels like it sometimes. Anyway I type my comment then comes the dreaded time. Time to type in the captcha, the word verification.

I have my own rituals and I swear they make a difference. You get it to where you can see the word, the place you are suppose to type the word and the place to login if you have not already done so. Heaven forbid you need to scroll as surely that will make you type in another new verification word. I have a few other things but I have always found it strange that on some peoples blogs I can never leave a comment without trying twice. Lately I have taken to just typing something like the letter A and pressing enter and then type in the real word verification.

Well guess what? Being a programmer I had to investigate this a while back and I completely forgot about it. I needed to set up a captcha system, both visual and audio so that the maximum number of people, not robots, could participate. The project was canceled before I could complete my part of it.

One thing I found out that I never knew and that I had since forgot was that when these words are handed out for you to type, the system starts a timer going. That’s right, the word verification has a born on date, or would that be a best used by date? Anyway it was not until this past week that it dawned on me that is what was happening to me. My word verification was expiring and that is why I was never able to get it right on the first try. I was not going insane after all. Yes you were... No I was not, Yea huh! Just go away you silly little voice. Anyway I was just taking to long to leave a comment and it was timing out.

Ah an epiphany and a mystery solved. But you know, I think I am going to miss my word verification rituals.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Shoe Day for the Barman

Yep, Saturday was shoe day. Actually if you look at it, it really was Friday and Saturday. I was suppose to post a picture for of shoes on Friday for Saturdays Photo Hunt and never did. Then Saturday I desperately needed some shoes. The shoes I have now are good for around the house but not so much for work. As luck would have it the shoes I needed were on sale. Finally I had to replace the rotor on my car on Saturday. It started to make some strange noise on Monday or Tuesday and finally the rotor just broke clean through on Friday. Ok, now granted this was not brake shoes but, had I not been gentle, stayed off the brakes as much as possible and not drive the car until I could get it in, I managed to avoid having to replace the more or less brand new brake shoes. So I kind of mark that in the shoe category too.

I also got to play plumber. I was not sure how I was going to take care of the water supply line as it was different fittings than I needed. I compression ends, it wanted some thing else. After checking I found out the kind of hose I was going to get for the supply line came with a 3/8 compression and ½ end on it. Perfect. So I got to play plumber this weekend too and replace a faucet. Maybe I should keep that going and see if there is any way to fix the leaking faucet around back of the house. I took my Dad's faucet apart and it looked like I should be able to replace an O ring. Maybe that will be the case for me. Time to get brave and turn the main water valve off for the house and see what I can see.

If you do not see me for a little while, could you please send a life raft after me, please.

I thought I would close this real short post with a cute email I received. It was entitled "How men use post-it notes." I hope you enjoy.

Thursday, June 07, 2007


I do not need to follow your laws.
I do not need to follow your rules.
If I am caught I will laugh it off.
I am celebrity.

I will not get a ticket if caught.
If I get a ticket my layer will fix it.
I will not play your games.
I am celebrity.
I will not be in court but if I do
I will not get convicted of breaking a rule.
If I am convicted I will not serve.
I am celebrity.

If I go to jail I will be treated special.
No processing, no lines just in you go.
I have better things to do so I will not stay.
I am celebrity.

In the end I am a spoiled brat.
I served three days and they called it five.
I will spend my remaining days in comfort in my house.
I am celebrity.

I only learned I was right.
I will be more popular than ever before.
People will worship me as they should.
I am celebrity.
I am Paris Hilton.

I am really getting sick of what we have come to. There is one system for the haves and a totally separate system for the have-nots. Well no more about this as I just am getting more and more mad when I think of it. This started out being a Friday 55 and look what happened. Oh well, everyone have a wonderful weekend.

Food Meme

I was tagged by bbsgirl (Jan) for the Food Meme. It has taken me a little while to do this because every time I have a favorite place to eat they seem to go away. I am a little leery saying anything least more Restaurant go away. I do the same thing with television shows. Hey, wait a minute. I think I will list some reality shows and claim they are my favorites and see if they go away...

The Rules:

1. Add a direct link to your post under the name of the person who tagged you. Include your city, state, and country.

Nicole (Sydney, Australia)
velverse (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
LB (San Giovanni in Marignano, Italy)
Selba (Jakarta, Indonesia)
Olivia (London, England)
ML (Utah, USA)
Lotus (Toronto, Canada)
tanabata (Saitama, Japan)
Andi (Dallas [ish], Texas, United States)
Todd (Louisville, Kentucky, United States)
miss kendra (los angeles, california, u.s.a)
Jiggs Casey (Berkeley, CA, USA! USA! USA!)
Lee Ann (Birmingham, AL, United States)
Osbasso (Helena, MT, USA)
Tish (Knoxville, TN, USA)
Jan (Hyattsville, Md, USA)
Bryan (Lansing, MI, USA)

2. List your top five places to eat at your location.

Clara's Lansing Station
What an interesting place. It was a former railroad station. It is right along side active train tracks and even has a dinning car you can sit in for your meal in addition to the restaurant. Having never been in the car lets explore the restaurant. It is a two story building with the upstairs overlooking the down stairs. There are all sorts of decorations on the walls from different eras and of different things. You could probably spend an hour looking at the walls alone. They have a wonderful Sunday brunch. They are also a wonderful destination for a knight cap and a great hang out after coming from the local theater. The food is very good (love the French Onion soup) and over all I have never been disappointed here.

Now this has to be the best pizza place in the Lansing area, maybe even farther. They have a very full Italian menu besides pizza but yumm, they make one heck of a pie. Very pleasant environment too.

Sophias House of Pancakes
Now they do breakfast up right. This used to be a former Big Boys. Then the employees bought the business for a while and that went out of business. Sophias is even better and has been around for many years now. They serve up many of their dishes in a skillet. Large portions and good food. Very nice service.

Sunrise Chinese Restaurant
Now they do not have the best food. They are just this little tiny mom and pop place. They have limited hours of business. But what I love about this place is the service. They go out of their way in any way they can to take care of you. I have always loved going there.

Webber's Restaurant
Now this is one classy restaurant. I have only been there once but it was amazing. The food was to die for. The service was very pleasant and no one tried to rush you out the door. I think we were there over two hours with dinner just before my best friends left Michigan to move down to Florida. If you are ever in the Ann Arbor area and want a wonderful restaurant, look for the Webber Inn. They are not cheap but sometimes that is not the most important thing to you. This is a wonderful place for that special evening.

3. Tag five other people (preferably from other locations) and let them know they’ve been tagged.

Well I just do not tag people although I do not mind being tagged. So if you would like to do this then by all means, please do.


Monday, June 04, 2007

Dance Recital: The Conclusion

Here we have the final few pictures I will be posting from the dance recital. Now who could resist the graceful movements in ballet. This particular class was almost as good as the adult class. I very much enjoyed them despite the fact that I do not watch ballet.

OK, now this group was so smooth and graceful. They were a pleasure to watch. Maybe I am started to get into ballet... Oh, no... help me!

The tap dancer (in the center) was both cute and good. As a result I payed more attention to her than I realized. She also appears in the final picture I am posting.

There is just something about this picture I love. I suppose part of it is you usually do not get lighting like this in a theater environment. Usually they are all washed out. This instructor not only was good with teaching all the classes but she also did pretty good with the lighting, stage presence, etc. That and she put on the entire show and had us heading out in just over 2 hours. If you have ever been to a recital you will know how truly amazing that is.

Another fun picture. I like the crispness, the contrast... can I open my eyes now? I am getting better. In another 10 or 20 years I might even know what I am doing.

The pose, the lighting, and the class. They really did a nice job on this song. Lots of energy, somewhat together. You know, I just might have to come to next years show.

And there you have it. Some of the best pictures from dress rehearsal night. I hope I did not bore you to tears.

Tech Stuff, leave now before I put you to sleep. It is not to late...:

You have been warned!!!

Canon Digital Rebel XT (would love to get a Canon Digital Rebel XTi also)


Sigma Zoom Telephoto 70-200mm f/2.8 EX DG APO HSM Autofocus Lens for Canon EOS

Tamron 28-75 f2.8 XR Di LD IF Canon EOS Aspherical Zoom Lens (not used for these pictures)

Note the Sigma is considered a pro lens and the Tamron is a high quality lens. This is a large part of how I was able to take these pictures in the low light conditions.


Speedlite 430EX (not used for these pictures but will be at the wedding)

This so replaces my Canon Ae1, A1, Sunpak 611, and 70-210 zoom. Did I mention I love to take pictures.

Anybody want to buy my old stuff?

Recital Picture: Penultimate

Finally I am back from seeing the actual recital this weekend. As promised here are a few more pictures from dress rehearsal. Since I had enough pictures I decided to split them into two separate days.

Not the littlest girls but the next age group up from that really kind of stole the show. Now several other groups were much better but that cute factor is just hard to beat.

I kind of liked this picture because the one dancer is completely off the ground. The chances of catching that are kind of slim. It was tough trying to narrow this act down to one picture but hope you like what I chose.

One of my favorite dancers for the show (besides my niece of course) was the dancer on the left. I had several much better pictures of just her but I think this is a better picture of the group. She had this million watt smile that really did something for me. She was always doing her steps without regard to the others. I think she was doing it right as not all of them were doing exactly the same thing. I am just not sure she really got the music inside her compared to another one of the girls. Still, overall I would have to give her a 10 ... well maybe a high 8. Her family should be very proud of her.

She gave this dance her all. As a matter of fact on the Saturday matinee she was dancing her heart out and her feet flew right out from under her. I loved her effort she put into dancing.

There was one adult class. They did very good. They really stayed together and added a little something extra to movements like pointing their hands when moving them. A couple of them had great smiles (sorry, I always look for that in a performer) and their moves were all so crisp. Now there were other dancers that did good too but, as a whole, no one compared to how the adults did.

OK, funny story... at least it was to me. The last performance, the second dancer from the left was all lines up ready for the number to begin and you hear this loud "hi mommy" come from the audience. She took a little time but she eventually turned, looked at her child, flashed a big smile, a quick wave and went right back into the pose. I guess it was something you had to be there to see but that really kind of was a highlight to me.

I will post a few more tomorrow. Hopefully I will be posting more now that things have settled down a little more for me. Have a great week everyone.