Can8ianben's Blog

This is a blog about me. I'm sure it will at some point talk about the things that I love... that being, my wife Meredith, family, friends, EMU, the Jays and baseball, the Maple Leafs, music, art, TV, biking, and whatever else is going on in my mind.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Go Jays Go!

Sweet mercy! Don't look now but the Jays are at the top of the AL East!!!

Toronto 12 9 .571 -
Boston 13 10 .565 -
Baltimore 13 11 .542 0.5
NY Yankees 11 10 .524 1.0
Tampa Bay 10 13 .435 3.0

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Maple Leafs are out of the playoffs, not out of the news.

Here is an interesting quote from recently fired coach of the Maple Leafs, Mr. Pat Quinn.

"There is no game without the players, and no victories for a team or its coach without loyal and talented individuals on the management, coaching and support staffs. This is the best hockey city in the world. The fans are knowledgeable and passionate. The media follows the team so closely, and while a little overzealous for my liking at times, help make playing, coaching and working here a stimulating environment daily."

Thanks for your years behind the bench coach!

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Tuesday night bikes....

Two bike related things...

Tonight was the Harrisonburg section of the Tour of Shenandoah bicycle race. It involved 30 miles and 27 laps of downtown H'burg. I had never witnessed a bicycle race of this magnitude, but it was worth the watch! Amazing to see semi-professional athletes pushing their bikes to their very limits. 30 miles around town took just over an hour to complete. They were really booking it! If I can find some pics, I'll post 'em.

Tonight also marked the launch of the Bike Movement website. This is a cross country bicycle tour started by Dave Landis and some other people my age wanting to make a difference in the Mennonite Church here in the USA. The plan is to bike across the country stopping at different spots along the way to talk about what youth want to see from their churches. My good friend and current room mate, Nathan Maust, is heading out on the road with Dave and the others. Should be loads of fun to follow, I only wish I was heading out there with them all! Follow their journey, or sign up if you think it would be worth doing!

Brad and his website pics...

My co-worker introduced this to our office... enjoy.

Sleeping position survey

North Carolina

Its taken me a little while to post about this past weekend. In some ways I feel like I'm fading from the blogging world... and I'm not really sure why. It may have something to do with wondering if anyone is out there caring about what I'm actually posting, but I know that there are a few people who continue to read my ramblings.

This weekend was bittersweet. I was able to travel to North Carolina with my future inlaws (almost the entire Blauch family) to visit some of their family friends. Jim and Kathy have always been close to Meredith and her family, and so I was excited to meet these people. Unfortuately Jim has been struggling with cancer for quite some time.

It was a bittersweet weekend because it was wonderful to be able to be with friends, say goodbyes, and share stories, and it was sad to realize that this could be the last time to speak to a friend. It was an interesting weekend for me - saying hello and meeting people while others were saying goodbye was an odd feeling. It was an amazing feeling to see someone on their deathbed who had lived a full and valuable life be introduced to Shawn and Julia's baby Cole, who is barely 5 months old.

The weekend flew by and left me with many great feelings. I really have enjoyed getting to know this family that I am rapidly becoming a big part of. It is something that I never really prepared myself for, but am really excited about.

Anyway, that is about it. Life is slowly moving on, last night was my last night of class for the semester. One final paper and I have finished my first Seminary class.

Bye for now.


Saturday, April 15, 2006

Best Ballpark Weekend Wrap-up

The ballpark tour is officially over, we just arrived home. I'm not really sure where to begin, so I guess I'll just start at the beginning. Our trip started off with a trip just north from Harrisonburg to watch the Nats take on the Mets at RFK stadium. This was a place we had all been to, but it was still going to be nice to take in a game.

Nathan, Michael and I got caught up in some traffic, but we made it for the 3rd inning. We met up with Erin Bailey, a friend from EMU, and enjoyed the game very much, dispite missing the first few innings. Pedro Martinez pitched a great game. Not wanting to finish our night too early, we headed out on town with our friend Becky from EMU, whom we were staying with, and hit up a great oyster bar in downtown DC. We ended up meeting up with Ben Schlabaugh, who was also going on this trip at that point and he began the journey with us.

We left DC early so that we would have plenty of time to get up to Boston... unfortuately it was not enough. We ended up spending almost 12 hours on a trip that should have taken 8, getting stuck in some horrible traffic in and around NY City. Not the best impression for my first time to the big apple!

I was pretty much overwhelmed knowing that the game was going on without us -- we were able to listen on XM, but it was killing me that we weren't there. Nathan was nice enough to drop me off at the park and I proceeded to run to our seats.

Fenway did not disappoint, and neither did the Jays. The stadium was breathtaking - I really can't put it any other way - it is something that every baseball fan should go see at least once in their life.

We were able to stay with a friend of Bens... Jon showed us Boston, at least a little bit from a music student's perspective. It was a great evening. The Jays even pulled out a huge win and I got to experience an amazing city, and an amazing park.

Shea Stadium was up next - it gave me a chance to see NY up close and personal for the first time. It was great to have Ben, Nathan, and Michael along to check it all out with. We spent some time in Soho and ate at a sweet Asian restaurant for dinner.

Unfortuately the baseball gods did not want us to see a full game from beginning to end, because it began to rain at about 3pm, and didn't stop until after 8pm.

By the time the game started, we were pretty cold and wet. We lasted for about half the game, but with our conditions and needing to get to Philly for the night, we ended up leaving early... 3 games, none watched from beginning to end.

We stayed with another college friend - Drew - near Philadelphia. It was good to see him again, and he even took us down to South Street in the city for a cheese steak before we bid fairwell.

Camden Yards was beautiful as usual. The day was perfect, 4:30 start time, and 85 degrees fairenheit at game time. I was able to watch some batting practice, tour and take some pictures, and we even moved down to much better seats during the game. This time we got to see the whole thing, and it turned out to be a perfect end to our weekend.

Things I got to cross off my life list --

2 new ballparks - shea and fenway, 2 new major east coast cities - NY and Boston, 4 new states - NJ, Connecticut, Rhode Island (which is not an island, Ben says it's more like a Road), Mass, first boston sausage and peppers, first baltimore crabcake sandwich -- all in a weekend's work

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

weekend update update

Pictures from the weekend's Roubaix race, see me in the red?

Monday, April 10, 2006

Weekend Update

Fantastic weekend, as most weekends are. The only downfall being that my fiance' is still in Germany (although she is probably having a blast, so its really not that bad).

First things first... MACRoCk 2006 started things off on Friday night. I ended up seeing several very good bands, my set list as far as I can tell went something like this:

Page France
Black Moth Super Rainbow (part of)
Pattern is Movement
Hail Social
Gym Class Heroes
Masta Ace (part of)
The Walkmen (part of)

A decent night. I was very impressed by Page France, and then by Gym Class Heroes. Both put on a great performance. Downfall was that we missed what many hailed as the best show of the weekend when Man Man played just before The Walkmen. Speaking of which, I felt that they weren't that captivating for what was supposed to be the headlining band for the festival.

Saturday's set list for me was much more subdued. While on Friday I ended up visiting 3 venues, I basically stuck with just one for most of the night. I also visited the label expo, but that was earlier in the day. So here is how it went:

Dear and Glorious Physician
The Snake The Cross The Crown
William Elliott Whitmore (pictured above)
Jonah (from One Line Drawing, etc.) (pictured below)

Very, very impressive sets from the final three solo artists. I was very taken with what they played, as well as what they performed.

Saturday also included a big meal at Taste of Thai with family who were in town for my sister Susanah's art gallery opening, and then of course my sister Susanah's art gallery opening :) It was great not only to see family, but also a very proud moment to see the amazing work that my sister has been doing. If you are on the EMU campus, head to the library art gallery before Easter to check it out.

Sunday was great, I was able to go to church with my parents, aunt Suz, and my sister Susanah. It was a beautiful day which was perfect for the two bicycle races I was then able to enter.

The first was the Harri-Roubaix. This is an annual tradition here in the valley. It is a bike race that happens in the spring on some of Harrisonburg's finest gravel roads. I chose to take my fixie because of it's wider tires and ended up paying the price. I didn't end up finishing as much as I would have liked, but it was a fantastic thing to be a part of.

The second race was the 5th installment of the Harrisonburg Alleycat series. It was a great day, but we only had about 15 people turn out. The race was short but sweet, as I ended up taking second place. I even ended up with some nice prizes!

All in all, a very good weekend! As I mentioned before, the only thing that could make it better was if Meredith was here.

Baseball trip matchups...

I really need to post about this weekend... later on for sure. It was a good one.

Here are the pitching match-ups for the upcoming baseball trip (tagged best baseball trip ever)

Mets (Pedro Martinez, 1-0, 6.00 ERA) at Nationals (Tony Armas, 1-0, 6.00 ERA), 7:05 p.m. ET

Blue Jays (Ted Lilly, 0-0, 11.57 ERA) at Red Sox (Matt Clement, 1-0, 5.14 ERA), 7:05 p.m. ET

Brewers (Chris Capuano, 1-1, 3.50 ERA) at Mets (Tom Glavine, 1-0, 2.25 ERA) 7:10 p.m. ET

Angels (Bartolo Colon, 0-1, 12.86 ERA) at Orioles (Eric Bedard, 1-0, 5.40 ERA) 1:35 p.m. ET

Things that jump out at me from this list...

-- Pretty big pitchers here - Pedro, Glavine, Colon (6 Cy Young awards between them) - and some nice young pitchers as well - Clement, Capuano, Bedard
-- Getting to see Pedro play - should I wear my Nats cap to that game?
-- I finally get to see my Jays in person and it's Lilly with his almost 12.oo ERA that I get to see matching up against Boston... Go Jays Go
-- I have both Colon and Bedard in my home pool... that could be a disaster of a game for my nerves

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Of A Revolution

Good to see O.A.R. tonight at the convo center, set the weekend off just
perfectly before the MACRock Festival at JMU. Once again I forgot my camera...
Should remember this weekend to post some pictures.

Don't you feel the music going to your bones.
And don't you feel that music is life.
Well, I do.
It's like blood ever flowing.
But I pray to God that the music fills the cup.

It gets me off when I'm feeling down.
And I cannot sleep when that music is around.
Well, I live just to move.
So get on up and get that groove back in your move.
A wise man once said.
A wise man once told me he said,
"When music is the one thing that surrounds you.
You feel no pain."

OK, Blue Jays, Let's Play Ball

I can't believe I forgot to post this, but my Blue Jays got off to a great start on Tuesday night with a 6-3 win over the Minnesota Twins. The game included highs and lows - some shaky defense, but clutch hitting - and ended up with a win for the home team.

Since the game, they lost their second and won their third - taking the series from the Twinkies.

Season record -- 2-1

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Interesting fact...

I thought everyone should know that . . .

. . . On Wednesday this week, at two minutes and three seconds after 1:00 in the morning, the time and date will be 01:02:03 04/05/06.

That won't happen again for quite some time.

Monday, April 03, 2006

My Old Stompin Grounds

Here is good old Uxbridge Secondary School, the place I called home for 5 years (that's right, grade 13 - love that old Ontario system).

It still looks the same as I remember it from that side, but the new addition out the back is completely foreign. Crazy how things change.

Markham Menno's balldraft...

D-day finally arrived... here's what I ended up with:

Widger, Chris CHW
Zaun, Gregg C TOR
Konerko, Paul 1B CHW
Infante, Omar 2B DET
Chavez, Eric 3B OAK
Crosby, Bobby SS OAK
Betancourt, Yuniesky SS SEA
Johnson, Dan 1B OAK
Dye, Jermaine RF CHW
Kielty, Bobby LF OAK
Lawton, Matt RF SEA
Matos, Luis CF BAL
Nixon, Trot RF BOS
Stairs, Matt 1B KC
Cairo, Miguel 2B NYY

Bedard, Erik SP BAL
Buehrle, Mark SP CHW
Burgos, Ambiorix RP KC
Colon, Bartolo SP ANA
Lilly, Ted SP TOR
Papelbon, Jonathan SP BOS
Riske, David RP BOS
Rivera, Mariano RP NYY
Speier, Justin RP TOR
Reserve Batters
Sabathia, C.C. SP CLE

Maple Syrup and Ballpool

Another great weekend. I drove home on Friday after work with my two sisters and Felicia's friend Jen. The purpose of the trip was to be able to draft my final fantasy baseball team -- in a league that I have been in for quite a while.

While I was home I also got to help out a little bit with some maple syrup boiling. Good fun.