Five Random Photos Shared for January-June ’16

I haven’t been writing much here on A Random Journey in 2016. Feel free to slap me around a little.

Yet, I have been writing, don’t worry, just more on the blog Parklife DC, about happenings in Washington, D.C. Go have a look see, I’ll be here when you get back. For example, things about beer and breweries or concert reviews.

Maybe I’ve forgotten what it means to write/post here. What does Random represent now? The future is still new and bold, we’ll find out.

Since I’ve failed to post my monthly Five Random Photos all year, let’s get frisky. How many photos from 2016 so far should I post? 1000? 50? 10? Yes, zero is an acceptable answer, but too late, I already did not go with that number.

Let’s say…20.


Right Proper Brewing

Hot Chocolate


The Capitol Stone Yard
Kirin and Blossoms

Continue reading “Five Random Photos Shared for January-June ’16”

Five Random Photos Shared (after) July ’15

I’ve missed the boat and failed to share five extremely useless photos. Are you sad?

No? That’s what I thought. Oh well, no time like the present to correct such an egregious error.

P.S. No 4th of July photos, because that’s been done.

P.S.S. No good photos, because I don’t do those.


Some beer I needed to drink.


Mudhoney screaming at me. Read about their show if you dare. Mudhoney


Use the ‘trike’ and you know you’ll be safe!
Trike in Boracay


This existed for a brief time in the Seoul Airport, but unfortunately went in my belly. I still don’t know why.


This exists. Humanity has won. Their contribution to this planet has reached the pinnacle.
Philippines Toilet


Bonus? Bonus.


Witnessing the Presidents race on the 4th of July.
President's Race


Good tip.
Atlas Brew Works cans



Five Random Photos Shared in June ’15

Photos get taken. Photos get posted.

I winnowed it down to the least offensive. The least interesting. The least of the least.

That is the least I could do. Quite literally.


I’m so flushed. On the plus side, the urinal will electric shock you for a nickel.
Toilet Story


When it’s wrong, it’s wrong.
The Wrong Tree


Bobbleheads and rain.
Nationals + bobbleheads + rain


For the record, I did not die during that 1 minute of panic.
Gimme Shelter


The photo is not blurry. You are drunk.
Red, White & Brew


I’m hungry. Let’s get an empanada.
Plate of Empanada


Five Random Photos Shared in April ’14

Images have never appeared it such random dispositions.

Opening Day! Bring on the baseball season!
Opening Day! Bring on the baseball season!


Strolling the C & O Canal Towpath
Strolling the C & O Canal Towpath


Such a sight in Kuala Lumpur
Such a sight in Kuala Lumpur


I suggest a new strategy, Artoo: let Awesome Con win.
I suggest a new strategy, Artoo: let Awesome Con win.


Finished my 3rd One Day Hike in record time!
Finished my 3rd One Day Hike in record time!


Bonus! Because you can never have enough cherry blossom photos!

I cannot tell a lie. It was George who killed the cherry tree.
I cannot tell a lie. It was George who killed the cherry tree.


2012: A Sport By Any Other Name Would Not Smell As Sweaty

Welcome to a round-up of my favorite sports teams.

I rank the success of each team’s season and how many shots I needed to survive the ups and downs. At the end I also include teams that I played on this year.

Seattle Mariners (ML B – baseball)

The Mariners finished 75-87. Better than last year, but still not good. The only really noteworthy news was the trade of Ichiro Suzuki to the New York Yankees. I’m bummed (especially since it’s the hated Yankees) but hopefully he’s happy and can be productive at the end of his career. At a Mariners-Orioles game in Baltimore, I scrambled for a Dustin Ackley foul ball. First ball I’ve ever got at a game!

Success Indicator: 4/10. Whiskey shots: 3

Seattle Seahawks (NFL – football)

After some strange losses (and a controversial win against Green Bay) early in the season, the Seahawks have found their stride. They’ve rattled off 5 consecutive wins. They outscored their opponents 150-30 in three consecutive games. Second best in the history of the NFL. They are 11-5 and the #5 seed in the playoffs with good momentum. With the emergence of Russell Wilson as the starting quarterback (and maybe Rookie of Year?) and one of the best defenses, it looks like an exciting playoff run is in store. I also got to attend three games in Seattle, including the 42-13 schellacking of the 49ers.

Success Indicator: 8/10. (10 if they win the Super Bowl) Whiskey shots: 0

University of Washington Huskies (College football)

The Huskies treaded water this year. They had a couple good upset victories (Stanford and Oregon St.) but also had some serious head scratching losses (blown-out by Arizona and an overtime loss to WSU, among others). They lost to the teams they should have, but got crushed. With a 7-5 regular season, they got a bid to the MAACO Las Vegas Bowl against Boise St. Not the best bowl, but better than nothing. It was a close game, but the referees gifted the Broncos a first down and Boise St. won 28-26 on a field goal at the end. Then as usual, Keith Price threw a terrible interception to seal the win for Boise St. Overall, a disappointing season.

Success Indicator: 6/10. Whiskey shots: 4 (1 for the season and 3 for Couging it against the WSU Cougers.)

Seattle Sounders FC (MLS – soccer)

The Sounders were among the best teams in the league this season. They finished 15-8-11 (56 points). They went to their fourth consecutive US Open Cup tournament final, but lost on penalty kicks to Sporting Kansas City. They won their first playoff series (home and away games) in the MLS (1-0 aggregate goals against Real Salt Lake) but then lost 2-4 aggregate to the eventual champions, Los Angeles Galaxy. Finally, they kicked butt in the CONCACAF Champions League tournament. They finished the group stage at 4-0 (12 points) and moved on to the eight team knock-out stage, which starts again in March 2013. Go Sounders!

Success Indicator: 8/10. Whiskey shots: 2 (for losing to the LA Galaxy)


Other teams I follow:

Washington Nationals (MLB – baseball)

The Nationals were amazing this year (98-64). Best season ever and a playoff berth. But they lost the most crushing, crappy game in history…Game 5 of the NL Division Series against St. Louis Cardinals. Drew Storen gave up 4 runs in the top of the 9th and the Nats fall 9-7 (St. Louis wins series 3-2). Worst. Baseball. Game. Ever. Stephen Strasburg was amazing in 2012. Bryce Harper was great in his MLB debut. The Nationals will be an exciting team in 2013.

Success Indicator: 8/10. Whiskey shots: 4 (1 for each run in Game 5)

University of Washington Huskies (College basketball – men’s and women’s)

The men’s team were the regular season champions of PAC-12 (24-11) but failed to qualify for the NCAA Tournament. WTF? Instead they went to the NIT and lost by 1 point to Minnesota in the semi-finals.

The women’s team finished 20-14 (8-10 in the PAC-12).

Success Indicator: 5/10

Chelsea Blues (English Premier League – soccer)

The 2011-2012 Chelsea team (64 points) finished 6th in the Premier League. Not good for them and out of the Champions League qualifying for 2013. BUT.. they won the 2012 Champions League!!! So should get an automatic bid to next year’s tournament. Go Blue!

Success Indicator: 8/10. Whiskey shots: 2 (for 6th place)

Washington Capitals (NHL – hockey)

The Capitals had 92 points for the 2011-2012 season. They lost in the second round of the playoffs to the New York Rangers. With the NHL locked-out this season, not much to look forward to.

Success Indicator: 6/10. Whiskey shots: 2 (1 for losing in the playoffs and 1 for the lock-out)

DC United (MLS – soccer)

DC United finished 17-10-7 (58 points). They won in the first round of the playoffs but lost to Houston 2-4 aggregate in the Eastern Conference semi-finals.

Success Indicator: 7/10. Whiskey shots: 0 (Enough drinking for one day)

Other teams I play on:

DC Chapter  – University of Washington Alumni (Capital Alumni Network – co-ed flag football)

The third season for the DC Dawgs flag football team was a good one. We finished 6-4 in the regular season (and all of the losses were close games that could have gone either way). Then we won the first two playoff games to reach the Sweet 16 of the CAN tournament. But we lost to last year’s champion, Michigan, in the third round.

Success Indicator: 7/10.

DC Chapter  – University of Washington Alumni (Capital Alumni Network – co-ed volleyball)

The DC Dawgs played our first CAN volleyball season in 2012. We finished 3-5 in the regular season. We lost to the eventual champions, Delaware, in the first round of the playoffs.

DC Chapter  – University of Washington Alumni (Capital Alumni Network – co-ed softball)

The DC Dawgs also played our first CAN softball season in 2012. It was a learning year. We finished 1-13 and went 0-3 in the group stage of the playoffs. Next year we will definitely win much more.

DC Dawgs (Metro Sports League – co-ed volleyball)

I also played in Spring, Summer and Fall volleyball leagues. We came in 2nd in Spring and won the championship in Summer!


Finally, I was voted to be the Sports Chair of the UW Alumni – DC chapter Board. That means I continue to organize the flag football and volleyball teams and act as point of contact for new sports we play.

Peace and may the sports be with you.

2011: Can’t Get Anymore Blue

Welcome. Here, lovingly crafted for your enjoyment (or dismissal), I present my blue mood towards my favorite sports teams.

This also is a tell-tale sign that the end of 2011 is nigh, and I could be writing a bunch of end-of-year reviews. Or something. May be time for you to go on vacation. I am.

2011 was a blue year. Very blue indeed for Seattle sports. Blue is the prominent color of many Seattle sports teams, but that is not the blue I refer to. I mean blue as is melancholy. Blue as in sing the blues. Blue as in break out a bottle of Jack Daniel’s and curl up in front of reruns of Hill Street Blues. Get your shot glasses ready.

Seattle Mariners (ML B – baseball)

The Mariners are hard to root for. They can’t score runs. They trade all their good pitchers for hitters that never produce. They do nothing. It’s depressing. Ichiro’s numbers declined. King Felix didn’t match his Cy Young season of 2010. We traded away Doug Fister right when he was pitching well. You can’t finish much worse than 67-95. And no good prospects for next year.

Success Indicator: 2/10. Whiskey shots: 4

Seattle Seahawks (NFL – football)

After improbably winning their division last season (with a NFL history worst 7-9 record), and then miraculously beating the Saints in the playoffs (only to lose to the Bears), the Seahawks looked like they were back in the business of sucking for 2011. They started 2-6. They lost to Cleveland 6-3. Enough said. Yet, somehow they seem to have poured spinach on their Wheaties, because they are kicking butt, winning five of their last six games. At 7-7, they have a very small chance at the playoffs. But small is better than zero, so let’s see if they can pull off another miracle in their final two games.

Success Indicator: 6/10. Whiskey shots: 3 (5 if they don’t make they playoffs)

University of Washington Huskies (College football)

The Dawgs started strong at 5-1. Then they started playing good teams. And they got crushed three out of four games. Then they lost to Oregon St. (WTF?) and it looked like the wheels had fallen off. To just salvage the season, they had to whip the Cougars in the Apple Cup. They finished with a 7-5 record, good enough to get a bid to the Alamo Bowl in San Antonio, Texas against #15 ranked Baylor. Robert Griffin III, Baylor’s QB, won the Heisman Trophy, so it should add a bit of heightened excitement to the game on December 29. But they should have been better.

Success Indicator: 6/10. Whiskey shots: 6 (One for every loss, and two for losing to OSU)

Seattle Sounders FC (MLS – soccer)

The Sounders had their best season ever. That’s why it’s also the worst. Expectations were high. But not fulfilled. They finished 18-7-9 (63 points), 2nd best in the league. Yet they lost again in the first round of the playoffs. Three years in a row. Erg! There was a silver lining. They won the US Open Cup tournament for a 3rd straight time, tying a record for most consecutive times a team has done this and the first MLS team to do it. They also played extremely well in the group stage of the CONCACAF Champions league tournament (24 of the top club teams in North America, Central America and Caribbean) and have a spot in the knock-out stage that starts next April.

Success Indicator: 7/10. Whiskey shots: 5 (would have been 6, but for the secondary tourneys)


Other teams I follow:

Washington Nationals (MLB – baseball)

The Nationals had the 2nd best season since they’ve moved to Washington, D.C. (80-81). I managed to attend 10 games (two doubleheaders) while eating lots of nachos and Shake Shack burgers. Teddy Roosevelt continued to lose in epic ways in the 4th inning President’s race.

Success Indicator: 7/10. Whiskey shots: 1 (for Teddy)

University of Washington Huskies (College basketball – men’s and women’s)

The men’s team was solid (24-11) and won the Pac-10 Tournament Championship for the 2nd straight year. They beat Georgia in the first round of the NCAA Tournament but then lost a close one to North Carolina.

The women’s team (11-17) continued to suck.

Success Indicator: 7/10

Chelsea Blues (English Premier League – soccer)

The 2010-2011 Chelsea team (71 points) was up and down all year. And finally they were too far behind Manchester United and finished in 2nd place 9 points clear of 1st.

Success Indicator: 7/10. Whiskey shots: 2 (for letting Man U win)

Seattle Storm (WNBA – women’s basketball)

Yep, they still play professional women’s basketball. Seattle finished 21-13 and got bounced from the playoffs in the first round. Blah.

Success Indicator: 6/10. Whiskey shots: 0 (no reason to waste any here)

Washington Capitals (NHL – hockey)

The Capitals continue to be an enigma. In 2010-2011 they were again the best team in the Eastern Conference (107 points). They beat the New York Rangers in the first round of the playoffs, but lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning four games to zero. Another season wasted.

Success Indicator: 6/10. Whiskey shots: 4 (one for every loss to Tampa Bay)

DC United (MLS – soccer)

DC United played better this year, finishing 9-13-12 (39 points). But they failed to make the playoffs despite a weak Eastern Conference.

Success Indicator: 4/10. Whiskey shots: 0 (Can’t. Drink. Any. More.)

University of Washington Huskies (Capital Alumni Network – co-ed flag football)

Year two of DC Dawgs’ (UW Alumni) participation in flag football went better. We finished 4-6 (playoff seed #34 out of 58 total schools). Our division was stacked with a few of the best schools in the league so in a different division, we would have done even better. We played #31 Cornell in the playoffs, but lost a close game 20-12. They stopped us on the goal line at the end of the game. Also, we were shorthanded as many of our players were in NYC for a UW vs. Duke basketball game. There’s always next year…

Peace and may the sports be with you.

Things I Rely On (Bitter Frozen Edition)

Boy, is it sure arctic cold outside! My dog has become a wiener popsicle.

It’s been hovering below the 20’s (Farenheit of course) here in DC the past few days, although today it is a balmy 37° F.

In honor of this bitter and pointless cold, what I am reliant on to survive? Indeed, read:

…piping hot mochas (while seated as far away from the coffee shop entrance as possible. Read: avoiding blasts of frigid air).

…my huge and warm Seattle Sounders FC scarf (it’s pretty too).

…draft beer (obvious).

…my rocking red Washington Nationals beanie.

…hot toddies.

…my blue 12th Man Seattle Seahawks gloves (lovingly sent to me because I am a non-living in Seattle Season Ticket Holder).

…thick black socks (holes not included).

…my Washington Nationals scarf (for covering my face on boldly, bitter bike rides).

…central heating (for a nice 70° F cocoon of warmth).

…my Columbia winter jacket (combined with all of the above clothing accessories, and suddenly I am a force to reckoned with – or avoided).

…warmed up and savory Dangerously Delicious Pies.

Reds, Tigers and Indians

Part 3 of 3

This, luckily for you, is the final entry in my road trip trilogy of terror. Finally, we get to the root cause of why I roadtripped to begin with…baseball! Hold on for a short treatise on the highs and lows of each Major League stadium I sauntered through like a deluded dignitary. I suggest you pause now to get a hotdog and a beer. If you pause long enough, you may even escape reading this.

Great American Ball Park (Cincinnati, Ohio) – Home of the Reds


  • A great view of the bridges spanning the Ohio River that link Cincy to Kentucky and the quaint town of Newport.
  • The Washington Nationals were in town and they won 5-4. Which doesn’t happen very often…
  • I inhaled a tiny Coney hotdog. It was satisfying for 4.5 seconds.


  • At the 4.6 second mark, I was still hungry.
  • The confusing number of mascots. One is almost too many, but four? Gapper (looks like a retarded, red Phillies Phanatic), Mr. Red (looks like a spastic baseball headed Mr. Met), Mr. Redlegs (a mustached baseball head, which tells you all you need to know) and Rosie Red (because otherwise there’d be too many dudes).


Comerica Park (Detroit, Michigan) – Home of the Tigers


  • Tigers! Everywhere there are tigers! To say that Detroit doesn’t like its team name is to fly in the face of numerous tiger statues and leering tiger heads looking down from every direction. Very impressive.
  • A ferris wheel and other rides for the kiddies.
  • The home team scored two runs in the bottom of the 9th inning to win in dramatic fashion.
  • First a torrential downpour, then a rain delay, and then the clearing of the infield tarp and then the crew drying and making the infield playable again. How often do you get to see that? Kinda cool.


  • A 45 minute rain delay, there is such a thing as waiting too long.
  • David Aardsma gave up two runs in the bottom of the 9th inning and the Seattle Mariners lost in traumatic fashion. (errrgg!!!!!!)
  • The Detroit skyline had the least interesting view of all the stadiums but it was smack dab in the middle of the city, in a relatively nice area.


Progressive Field (Cleveland, Ohio) – Home of the Indians


  • Ken Griffey Jr. (Seattle Mariners) hits a homerun!
  • The view of the city skyline is picturesque.
  • Heritage Park is the home of the Indian’s Hall of Fame, split into two sections; those players that are actually in the official Major League Baseball Hall of Fame (in Cooperstown, NY),and those that are only good enough to make the team’s Hall of Fame. It was historical.
  • A perfectly positioned food court and bar, behind center field, that allows one to enjoy the game, a brew and an italian sausage all at once. Brilliant.


  • Felix Hernandez pitches terribly and the Mariners lose again, 6-1.
  • There is a race during the game with the mascots Ketchup, Mustard and Onion. Original. Their kid-friendly mascot is Slider (which looks like Barney the Dinosaur on crack).
  • There was a cool looking cemetary across the street, so after the game I went out and strolled through like the locals. Then I became terribly lost, and could not remember the street I was parked on, nor the name of the parking garage. 30 minutes of random city exploring later, I roared out of the parking garage just as it started to rain. Booyah!


Verdict: Originally, I was going to give Comerica Park the edge as the best of the three (those tiger statues!), but Progressive Field (originally called Jacob’s Field until 2008) was among the first of the new wave of retro stadiums built, and it just grows on you the more you think about it.

Also see: