99 Bottles of Beer…

•January 10, 2009 • 1 Comment
99 Bottles of Beer to be Filled - lnchris10

99 Bottles of Beer to be Filled - lnchris10

Last year for Christmas, Lindsay’s parents got me a homebrew kit. It was a complete surprise, but it’s one of my favorite gifts, as it got me into one of my favorite new hobbies.

My first two batches were the the Lager that came with the kit and an Australian Pale Ale that I found at a local homebrew store. For my third batch, I mixed things up a bit and put some coriander in with the Australian Pale Ale mix. It was summer and I was looking for a good refreshing summer beer and the coriander adds an orange flavor to the beer. It actually turned out really well.

My first three batches were from ready-made kits and only required me to boil a little water, mix the sugars and the beer mix, add more water and yeast, then let it ferment and bottle it. For my fourth batch, I wanted to try something a bit different. I went to the local homebrew supply store (Great Fermentations – if you live in Indy, it’s a great store) and got the ingredients to make a Pumpkin Ale. I got to take the grains and the hops and actually brew my first beer.

Lindsay and I went to Great Fermentations this afternoon to get the ingredients for my next batch. I decided to try a Belgian Pale Ale this time. I got a few new toys to help with the brewing process and I’ll probably start my batch tomorrow. It will take about a week for the brew to ferment, then I’ll switch it to a second container to ferment a little more. Once I bottle the beer, it will probably take between 2 and 5 weeks for the bottles to become carbonated. Then, it’s time to taste!

It’s Football Season!

•October 12, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Auburn = Bad, Colts = Good

 

Just like every year, I thought that Auburn, with their newly-installed Spread Offense, a la Tony Franklin, might actually have a chance to win the SEC this year. I thought they’d definitley  beat Alabama this year, and if they could just get past LSU, they should sail into the SEC title game in Atlanta in December. But, alas, this year is not the year. Last Friday, at 4-1, the year still looked promising. With the only loss coming in a close game to now-3rd-ranked LSU, and the most difficult games at home this season, there was a good chance they could finish out the season with a decent bowl game under their belt.

Now, with a loss last week to Vanderbilt (who Auburn hasn’t lost to since Eisenhower was President) and yesterday’s embarrassing loss to a 3-3 Arkansas squad who lost their last 3 games in a combined 139-31, the season looks all but lost. Arkansas’ offense was looking nearly as anemic as Auburn’s for most of this year, but they did what they needed to do to pull out the victory.

With a game at West Virginia on a Thursday night, then at Ole Miss (who beat Florida), and a homecoming game against UT-Martin, there’s a good chance AU could be looking at a 5-5 record heading into a home game against Georgia and then facing #2 Alabama in Tuscaloosa. At that point a 6-6 record is about all they can hope for, but a 7-5 final record is much more likely. Auburn’s defense is getting the job done for the most point, but you have to score more than 20 points to win a game in the SEC.

 

On the other hand, the Colts are finally looking like the Colts again still kinda suck. After a disappointing 2-2 start (that could have easily been 0-4 were it not for 2 great 4th quarter comebacks), the offense and defense are finally clicking. Up 24-0 at halftime against the Ravens, the Colts look like they did in the postseason of 2006.

With today’s game beginning a long, difficult stretch of hosting the Ravens, @ Green Bay, @ Tennessee (undefeated and the AFC South division leader), the Patriots at home, then  Pittsburgh. If the Colts continue to play the way they’re playing today, they could legitimately be a Super Bowl contender for 2008 they played the last two weeks, they’ll very likely finish 8-8 and not make the playoffs. What a sad year for football for me.

WAR EAGLE and GO COLTS!

Social Media Galore

•October 8, 2008 • Leave a Comment

 

Social Media Landscape - fredcavazza

Social Media Landscape - fredcavazza

 

It’s been quite a while since I’ve posted on here, but I’ve been pretty busy with a lot of new social media initiatives at work. Not only do we have blogs now, but also a twitter account, flickr group page and a Facebook group

I’ve been working so much on social media for work, that by the time I get home in the evenings, the last thing I want to do is sit at the computer for much longer. I’ve been able to get around that by tweeting via text message and updating my Facebook profile via Twitter, but it’s tough sometimes. I find that when I do sit down at the computer at home, I’m usually keeping up with people on Facebook or reading about the most recent bank failure/government bailout (that’s another post for another day).

It’s really amazing to me how much you can do with Social Media. I’m in the process of figuring out how to create Facebook applications and working with Google/Flickr/Etc APIs to create mashups. Is anyone else using social media for work or is strictly for personal use?

Memphis Vacation

•April 6, 2008 • Leave a Comment
2008.03.29-Memphis

Here are some pictures from our recent trip to Memphis…look closely and you’ll even see the Rev. Al Sharpton!

Going blog crazy!

•March 27, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Blog Crazy!

In addition to recently joining Smaller Indiana, a great Indiana-based social network, I’ve begun posting on this blog (which used to be The Bob Loblaw Law Blog) again. It had been about 6 months since I last posted on the BLLB. So I’ve begun posting on here periodically at best.

But at work, we’re venturing into new territory this year and I’m getting really excited about it. One of the big parts of my job is dealing with the interactive portions (read: web 2.0) of our website, VisitIndiana.com. Last year, we did a promotion over the summer called The Great Indiana Getaway. TGIG was very successful, but it was lacking in web 2.0 features. This summer we’ve decided to add some blogs to our summer promotion.

They’re still in the works and will look much better this summer, but there they are.

In addition to that I’ve decided to start up my “professional” blog, the Tourism Tech Corner. This is my attempt to fuse together the two seemingly distant portions of my job. I had heard from several of our industry partners that they would love to focus more time and energy on the internet and new technology, but many of them don’t know where to start. That’s where I come in. In our April email blast, I’ll have my fist Tourism Tech Corner section. I’ll use those few paragraphs to highlight something fairly easy that they can institute to help improve their website and their presence with new media.

I started up the Tourism Tech Corner blog as a place to post my monthly email blasts as well as fill in the time in-between with helpful tidbits that I’ve come across. I’m really hoping that I’ll be able to help our industry by providing them the tools they need to reach new customers.

All that being said, I’m going to attempt to keep up with all these blogs, so we’ll see how I do!

– JW

My Celebrity Look-Alikes

•February 26, 2008 • 1 Comment

Interesting…..

Can Mr. Smith Get To Washington Anymore?

•February 22, 2008 • 1 Comment

Can Mr. Smith Get to Washington Anymore?

With the political season upon us, Lindsay and I Netflixed a political documentary called “Can Mr. Smith Get To Washington Anymore?

Let me set the scene: It’s 2004 and Dick Gephardt has just decided to retire after 28 years as a US Congressman and 2 failed Presidential bids. With Missouri’s 3rd Congressional District wide open for the first time in 28 years, and with Missouri’s 3rd as a heavily Democratic district, the real race was the primary, not the general election. 10 different Democrats decide to run for the chance to become a US Congressman. Among those running is Russ Carnahan, whose father was a former governor of Missouri, who died tragically in a plane crash, but was posthumously elected to the US House of Representatives, so his mother filled the seat. Carnahan was by far the front-runner in the race and it wasn’t even supposed to be a race to begin with.

Enter Jeff Smith, a 30-year-old African-American Studies professor at Washington University in St. Louis. Jeff was interested in politics and decided that it was time for a change. And with Gephardt retiring, there was never a better time to run. In addition to being young and idealistic, Jeff’s campaign was run by a group of early-twentysomethings. None of which have any political experience and some of which are still in college.

Jeff runs a very grass-roots campaign and surprises nearly EVERYONE in Missouri’s 3rd. I won’t go much further and spoil the ending for you, but even though I personally disagree with many of the things that Jeff stands for, he is an inspiring man and he ran an inspiring campaign.

In the end, this movie really made me think about politics and how it truly has become about what your name is and who you know rather than what you believe. Our country’s founding fathers intention was always that “public service” was to be something you did to serve. They never intended people to be “career politicians”. While there truly is something to be said for experience, I think it’s so much more important for regular people to represent others in our republic.

If you have any interest in politics or just enjoy documentaries, this is a quick (just 82 minutes), interesting film. (3 1/2 stars)

JW