30 May 2005

Road to Omaha II...

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29 May 2005

Salaries in Education

This story about the highest paid school staffer in Illinois is shocking. I realize that this is a very talented individual who has done some good things to help make/keep the school he works for one of the top ones in the country. (I think Lincolnshire was listed in that Top 50 HS list that recently came out in Newsweek.) But why can't this guy work for Chicago Public Schools where he could be helping out hundreds of schools, and students that are a lot more in-need than those in super rich suberbs.
And the whole part about 'farewell handshake' money, or boosting the last couple years of salaries so it artificially gives them a high retirement pension seems criminal and wrong. I say good for California and New York for out-lawing anything more than a 6% increase.

Piano Man...

Wow. I hadn't even heard of this story until now. Where have I been? This story is astonishing, like something out of a movie, with the waterlogged suit with all tags cut out, a impromtu concert. Sort 'Bourne Identity' meets 'The Pianist'. (both excellent movies, by the way) I will have to keep an eye on this story. I may have to watch the 'Shine' movie also.

27 May 2005

Iowa has smart drivers

Yippee! This article tells about a survey done by GMAC Insurance that it ranks states by driver intelligence. I am leaving the 40th ranked state for the 3rd ranked state.
There definitely is a difference even in driving styles. Growing up in Iowa, the honk is only used if you are trying to get someone's attention or you are alerting someone to impending danger (like your car sliding on the ice toward them.) So, it quite stressful to drive in Chicago where people honk for any reason they choose, or sometimes no reason at all....coming out of an alley, HONK...hesitate too long at a green light, HONK....waiting for an opening to turn across traffic, HONK...trying to parallel park on a busy street, HONK...let someone in in front of you, HONK....not letting someone in in front of you, HONK. whew, I'm surprised more horns don't wear out in Chicago.

26 May 2005

Champions League Final Recap

Gingers was PACKED. The front room, the back room and the party room, all were standing room only, and only a scarce amount of that. At least 80% of the crowd were Liverpool fans that they were their to be heard. There was singing and chanting throughout the game. I've never seen Ginger's so energetic. As for the game, it is probably the most exciting game of soccer I've watched. Most big-time championship matches often fail to live up to billing since teams usually play cautious, tight football, unwilling to take any risks. Italian teams in particular are known for their defense style of play. That of a plodding, stale game was tossed out the window after 52 seconds when Milan shocked everyone by finding the net. They continued to dominate all areas of the match, having another goal called back due to offsides and another one cleared off the line. Half-time found Liverpool down 3-0, and that is a mountain in soccer. But the second half might as well have been a new game, because it was definitely a new Liverpool team that emerged from the locker room. They scored 3 goals in 6 minutes. Guys in the bar barely had time to complete their celebrations from one goal to sit down and see the next one scored. When they tied it at 3-3, bedlam was the special of the day at Gingers. Sixty more minutes (30 in regulation plus two 15 minute periods of extratime) of soccer were endured with several heart-stoppingly close shots marking the very end. So, down to penalty kicks, and Liverpool coming out on top 3-2. Great stuff. An incredible game and memorable experience for my last trip to Gingers.

25 May 2005

Sunscreen

Saturday marked the first opportunity for me to get out the sunscreen and use it. A couple friends came in from out of state and we went to the Cubs-White Sox game at Wrigley Field, very fun. We had great weather, the best we've had in a couple weeks probably. And with all that sun, I knew I had better be applying that SPF! I always get a little happiness out of applying that layer of UV saving protection. I'm not sure why. Maybe I'm just thankful for the nice weather that necessitates it.

24 May 2005

YMCA violence

The YMCA is again in the news, this time a different location and not for drag queens interfering with swim meets. (if you've forgotten, I wrote about that a while back.) This time it is the Y where I am a member and where I worked out the first 4 or 5 months I lived here. Luckily I don't go there anymore and I've never played ball there. But the crew we get at my location for basketball doesn't look much better. They are pretty tough looking and the arguments can get pretty heated and scary.

Champions League Final

Can't wait til tomorrow!!! I got someone to cover for me at work so I can cut out an hour early and head to Ginger's Ale House (voted #1 soccer bar in the U.S.) and watch the final of the Champions League. The Champions League is like a tournament of champions. All the top teams from all of Europe's national leagues get put in to see which team comes out on top. It is a big tournament and the qualifying rounds start in August and we are now at the pinnacle. Should be a great show, plus, there will be an English team in the final to cheer for. If you can't make it to Ginger's, the game will be shown on ESPN2. Enjoy...or should I say "Ole! Ole! Ole! Ole!"

Muppets comeback?

Disney is one of the standard case studies in college business classes. When you start to read about all their off-shoots and subsideries, the size and scope of their operations is surprising and impressive. So it will be interesting to see how they use their distribution channels to pull the Muppets back into the public eye and build the demand for that franchise. I will be happy to see more of them. I love Fozzy bear. Wakka wakka wakka.

23 May 2005

Revenge of the Sith

Wow. It was even better than I was hoping for. My excitement really came to a creshendo for this one. We watched Episodes I & II the night and that really helped to refresh the storylines and clear up some of the confusion about who was behind the creation of the clone army. I was SO giddy when the big STAR WARS came on the screen, accompanied by the requisite horn blasts. I was thinking, this is the last time I'll experience this feeling of wondering and seeing new characters, worlds and feats! I thought that George Lucas really succeeded in completing his Star Wars series at the high level it should be remembered at. I read an interesting article in Entertainment Weekly and he was saying that when he began to write the scripts for the new trilogy, about 60% of the story got put into Revenge of the Sith. The other 40% was divided between Episodes I & II. He said there was a lot more 'filler' or creative diversions in those two.
OK, a couple items after watching 'Sith'...
1 - Obi Won really came through and showed how powerful of a Jedi he was. I think we were lead to think that Anakin was always saving his hide and never really got to see his full power. Even when he killed Darth Maul, he was a fingertip away from his own death before he jumped up and caught Maul by surprise. In this movie, Kenobi is the real deal! Takes out Gen. Grevious and defeats Darth Vader.
2 - I didn't realize til later that the Emperor probably let Mace Windu get the better of him so Anakin could see it and strength the lie about the Jedi's trying to remove Palpatine and take over the Senate.
3 - I really felt bad for Padme. She really got a bad deal. But I was happy that she was strong enough to leave Anakin when she realized he was evil.
4 - I thought the "Luke"...."Leia" part was a little cheesy or at least needed a bit more background or tie-in or something. I thought it was wierd.
5 - I was surprise that it was the Clone Army, for the most part, that carried out the execution of the Jedi. I was expecting Anakin/Vader to do it all.
6 - The killing of younglings. Yikes.
7 - I really thought Lucas did a nice job of starting to make some visual transitions to the old trilogy. I thought the ships were starting to look similar to those in the original movies, like the Emperor's shuttle. Also, the look of the Clone Army was starting to look very similar to the Stormtroopers, the appearance of Biker Scouts, Padme's hairstyles, and those little box droids that skitter around on the floor.
8 - Lucas also talked about having to trim the film down to get it down to the 2 hour 26 minutes. He took about a chunk that gave more background/depth to the Wookie nation and their role. The other chunk showed Padme beginning to get some people together to form what will become the Rebel Alliance. Hopefully that stuff will be on the DVD when it comes out.
9 - Dara & I were discussing if we had kids, whether we would show the movies in sequence or in the order they were released. I originally thought in sequence, but after further discussion, I agree that order of release is the only way to go. Like Dara said, "Otherwise they'd never know the shock and horror of "Luke, I am your father."
So, who's up for a second viewing this weekend?

18 May 2005

Multimedia Update

Watched 'Sideways' earlier this week via Netflix. I was not impressed and am surprised that it got all the Oscar talk & nominations it did. I thought it was very average and the character's personalities, motives, and problems were heavy-handed-ily portrayed from the start of the film and not that much happened with the plot. I did have a couple laughs but I would say, 'Don't waste your 2 hours.'

Also, I haven't heard any feedback regarding the Jack Johnson or Killers - Garden State music sampler I distributed awhile back. Anyone have any comments, positive or negative? Any favorite tracks? Anyone listen to it? :)

The Gorillaz have a new CD out and I'm excited to get it and give it a listen. I loved their first one that came out three years back or so. I am also hoping to get to listen to Ben Folds new CD. It's gotten some solid reviews.

Gearing up for Episode III

After eating a sit down meal in Burger King for the first time in a LONG time, to get 2 Star Wars figurines (Darth Maul and Yoda) to help mom's collection (she ended up having both already) I walked over to Target and picking up some deodorant I found my way over to the toy section and more specifically the Star Wars display. I spent the next 20 minutes working my way through the racks of action figures. As I was checking out each face and costume and reading about each character on the back of the package I was taken back to a time twenty years ago. My older brother and I, shopping at the ALCO or Pamida with Mom, flipping through every package all the way to the back of the display and digging through the pile in the bin at the bottom of the display, looking and hoping to find the Han Solo in Bespin outfit or the Biker Scout. I can't tell you how big a smile thinking about that put on my fTaace or the feeling that I got when I picked out, paid for and took home my new Clone Trooper tonight.
Thanks to my brothers and mother for all the fun hours of playing Star Wars guys and happy viewing to all for the new movie.

Food Critic Fun!

This article is just great. It totally cracked me up and I love the style it was written in. (unlike my own style, which leaves prepositions dangling on the end of a sentence...) I agree when the columnist is talking about the part in the food critic's book that talks about her family and friends getting tired of her constant food critiquing. It would be fun to listen to for a while, but I would probably like to say, "Shut up and enjoy the wonderful meal my employer is buying for you." So, here's the question, IF you had a world-class food critic coming in to visit, where would you take them? It's tough, because I totally agree with the columnist that I wouldn't want to take them to my favorite little food spot and have them rip it up. Hmm, I'll be posting my choice(s) later today.

14 May 2005

Good Riddance

Pierre Pierce is forgoing his final year of eligibility to enter the NBA draft. The quotes from his press release made me shake my head, "It is time for me to move on, I put my time in over the last four years at the university. I just think it is time." Yes. Yes it is.
I thought this editorial from the Des Moines Register was not only somewhat humerous but also pretty valid. Pierce's numbers at Iowa (when he was eligible to play) were not that impressive. I, for one, will be surprised to see him on an NBA roster, much less on the floor.

American gets highest post ever in Vatican

The Archbishop of San Fransico was appointed to fill the vacancy left by Pope Benedict XVI as prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. There had been talk here in Chicago that Archbishop George would be a possible choice but it was not to be. And it sounds like Archbishop is happy about that.

Drug Bust

But it's the people who are supposed to be keeping the drugs OUT of the country that are busted! The involvement of the National Guard and the use of military vehicles, wow. I tried to imagine myself working as an undercover FBI agent and seeing all that corruption. Talk about a high stress job. Those guys probably wouldn't hesitate to shoot you if they found out you were FBI. AND, three and a half year long sting! Wow, that is some patience in laying the groundwork.

New rodent species? Yippee!!

Why can't they discover a new species of something more enjoyable/pleasant? The best part of the article is the quote by the Wildlife Conservation Society researcher, "It was for sale on a table next to some vegetables. I knew immediately it was something I had never seen before." He then ordered 2 of them stir-fried with broccoli and bamboo shoots.

13 May 2005

NPR on Beer

Heard this piece on All Things Considered tonight while driving, but I only caught the last 5-10 minutes. So I pulled it up on the ol' internet. I was quite pleased that I have sampled 4 of the brews on the list. I like the Goose Island IPA quite a bit as I am fond of most IPA's. Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout is not something I will be rushing to have again, I would much rather have Sam Smith's Nut Brown Ale instead. I can't really remember anything about Anchor Steam, maybe I haven't had it and maybe I was thinking of Anchor port. Czechvar, as Eron & I both agree, is only a fair brew and not the best libation to come from the Czech Republic. That title would go to Staropramen, with Pilsner Urquell and Brou Czech also up there. Since I'm writing this while babysitting, I research/surfed around and found this interesting site on the Radio Prague site. Also, here is the Staropramen site. "With a thirst-quenching finish known as RIZ or 'just right'...well now I know what that is called! Now, Eron, we need to find where one can procure a pint of it here in the Midwest. The Staropramen site shows only 3 Staropramen pubs in the US and all are in NYC. Here is the Brou Czech site, it is pretty ghetto compared to Staropramen.

Yankee takes over the Redcoats

This is monumental news. Manchester United is the biggest soccer club in England and one of the biggest in the world. Malcolm Glazer is a 77 year old American businessman who owns the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and now a majority of Man U. It is a massive understatement to say fans are furious. I was listening to BBC this morning and they are hanging him in effigy outside Old Trafford (their stadium). There is a whole section dedicated to it on the BBC football site.

Lincoln Park Zoo = Death Sentence

That title was on one of the signs held by people picketing the Zoo this morning after this news about 3 dead monkeys came out. That's after the three dead elephants, a camel and a gorilla. Yeesh, not good odds at that place. If I was a giraffe, I would be thinking jail-break.

"I wish I had a million dollars.....Hot Dog!!!!"

This story is ridiculous. Hopefully the money will go to the worthy causes that are noted and not in legal fees for the criminal. I thought it was interesting that the store that sells the ticket gets 1% of the winnings.

The Warriors, Golden Eagles, Gold, ???

So I spent 40 minutes typing this post earlier this morning only to have blogger be 'under construction' when I went to post it. So here is my hopefully competent reconstruction.

Marquette University is without a nickname and here's why. They, like hundreds of other institutions, voted to stop using their Native American nickname in early 90's. So their 'Warriors' and 'Willie Wampum' and the logo were archieved and in 1994 'Golden Eagles' was selected over the lame, over-used PC-replacer 'Lightning'. Now, I've always thought Golden Eagles was a pretty cool nickname and fairly unique, but I recently learning that there was a large contingent that has never been happy with it and it really hasn't been a hit as the new nickname. So, on that note, when the VP of the Board of Trustees announced at commencement last year that he & another trustee would donate $1 million if the university would go back to the Warriors nickname, it caused quite a fuss. The university did not go for the bait, but focus groups were formed and surveys were taken, and their findings can be found at Marquette's PR dept page set up for the Nickname decision. And at the conclusion, it was voted that the 'Gold' would be the new nickname starting July 1 '05, which is important becuase Marquette is joining the Big East conference this summer and has to have their logo and nickname confusion sorted out by then. The 'Gold' went over like a lead balloon. Everyone was in an uproar, so NOW the university is holding an online vote for the nickname. There will be 10 choices along with a write-in option., including past Marquette nicknames 'Hilltopers' and my favorite 'Golden Avalanche' as can be seen on the nickname timeline. Warriors will not be one of the options, nor will it be allowed in the write-in. Unfortunately, only staff, faculty, and alumni will be able to vote. Once that vote is complete, the top two vote getters will go into the final vote-off. And that, theoretically, will be the end of it.
This article on ESPN gives a bit wider view of the Native American nickname issue. I personally think that if it is done is a historically-correct & sensitive way, it should be embraced. These institutions are reflecting part of demographic or their history. I like it, just like I like the Flying Dutch, the Dutchmen, the Crusaders, the Fighting Irish, the Norsemen, the Vikings, the Railsplitters, and the Quakers. I am also interested into how much this whole thing has cost the university in dollars. Time-spent, merchandising opportunities missed, obsolete merchandise, letterheads, etc. I should ask my friend Joe who works in collegiate licensing.

10 May 2005

Pizza for hostage

LOL...not a funny situation but definitely a funny end to it. That guard will never look at a pizza the same.

Chesney - Zellweger

Wow, I knew nothing about this. And I guess no one else did til the end of April. Met in January, wed in May. That's pretty speedy!
And it causes me to share a memorable line from the silver screen, "You can't just walk up to her, hand her a bouquet, and say 'Hey, remember me, we were kids together, will you marry me? No, it just isn't done like that'" What movie, folks?

07 May 2005

UK Elections

I'm sure you all saw that Tony Blair was re-elected, but with the lowest approval rating in history, sounds familiar doesn't it? But the more interesting (to me) elections took place in Northern Ireland. David Trimble (Nobel Peace Prize winner) lost his seat surprisingly. And this short article about Ian Paisley's (who's held his seat since 1970) reaction to hearing that the man behind the Good Friday Peace Accord had lost his seat was quite telling. What I was surprised by was the strong showing by Sinn Fein. After a dodgy time for the IRA with loads of bad press and questionable actions and motives, I thought voters would give their support to SDLP candidates, more middle of the road. Yet, Sinn Fein's Gerry Adams won the race for his West Belfast seat with a larger percent of votes than in the previous election. He called for the IRA to use only politics to further its goals, and cease criminal activities and he has been answered by this statement from the IRA.

Brilliant!

Dara & I were guest of Guinness last night. There was an promo event called Guinness Believer and for some reason we were invited so we went and enjoyed free pints, a short educational presentation, and free food. The venue was a big arcade/family fun center place so afterwards we played a bunch of games. Here is how the competitions ended up: Skeeball winner - Dara (although Jake had the highest single game score), Pop-a-Shot winner - Jake, Quarterback throw - Jake, Motorcycle race - Dara, Tekken 4 - Jake, Car race - 1 win each, Hostage operation game - Dara.
So thank you Guinness for a fun, cheap night!! Oh, so I should pass on the information from the presentation. Many people think Guinness is high calorie due to the thick, rich flavor, but Guinness has only 125 calories per 12 oz serving, lower than many other beers. Guinness is has nitrogen bubbles, which are much smaller than carbonation bubbles, which gives it that smooth taste. Oh, and the coolest piece of info, when Arthur Guinness took out the lease on the buildings that are now St. James Gate Brewery, he signed the lease for 9000 years and it locked in the rent...a 45 pounds ($75) per YEAR. BRILLIANT!

06 May 2005

And they're off!!!

Alright, folks its Derby time again! The website is really TOP SHELF! Make sure you have your sound turned on when you check it out. You can listen to the racecall's from a bunch of notable past Derby's. Read about the jockey's silks! You can get the race history, workout times and barn notes for each horses. The part I loved the most was the pedigree on each horses. You can read about all the different horses up the family tree and what they each did and who their half-brother's are, etc. Very fun! Also, be sure and get your recipe for Mint Julips from the website too!
I read a little article on the horses yesterday in Sports Illustrated and thought that Afleet Alex might be my horse this year. Then I pull up the website and check out the jockey's jersey for Afleet Alex, pretty cool. I can't cheer for the favorite Bellamy Road, because that is George Steinbrenner's horse, and I don't like George Steinbrenner. So, I will be contacting everyone on the Saturday morning to hear about what hat you're wearing and your pick for the trophy.

Good ol' Texas cheerleaders

The state representative has to feel like an idiot after having his little quote/cheer included in the article.

National Forests opened for construction...

Forget about the environment, we've got an oil war to keep going!
I was actually angry when I read this article this morning. What a disappointment.

The End of Mary of the Underpass...

I think we all knew that it would happen sooner or later. Someone defaced the image with black shoe polish, writing "Big Lie" on it. The Dept. of Transportation was then forced to paint over the graffiti.
Sigh, it was quite a tourist attraction for our neighborhood. The pedestrian traffic was constant for weeks!

04 May 2005

Name Jake's iPod II...

Four contenders, the final round. Please cast your vote only once.

Play Like A
Champion Today.

Be Not Afraid

Let Us Go In Peace
In The Name Of God

Just Do It.

03 May 2005

Challenge for all!!!

OK, there is a poem that I read once on a CTA bus that I really liked but have not been able to find it online anywhere. I don't know the name or the author (that's what makes it difficult I guess.) But I think the author is a recognizable one. It was a while back, but I vaguely remember that it is about a man who loves the stars and goes to talk with an astrologer or to an astrology class and hears all the mathematics of it and leaves and says something profoundly simply about looking up at the stars. I've done some googling and can't come up with it. Any ideas? The winner gets a prize!

02 May 2005

Road to Omaha...

One month til the road to Omaha begins. Regionals start on June 3. With that in mind, here is the latest Top 25 from Baseball America. (Texas had been #1 for quite a while but slipped a couple spots this week.)
Rank Team Record Last Week Previous
1. Cal State Fullerton 33-11 3-0 2
2. Tulane 38-8 3-1 3
3. Texas 37-9 2-2 1
4. Oregon State 32-8 2-1 6
5. Miami 33-11 2-1 5
6. Florida 31-12 1-2 4
7. Nebraska 37-9 3-1 8
8. Georgia Tech 32-12 2-2 7
9. Arizona 29-15 2-1 9
10. Baylor 30-17 3-1 11
11. Long Beach State 32-14 3-0 12
12. Alabama 32-14 3-1 13
13. Tennessee 32-14 4-2 18
14. North Carolina 36-10 3-2 10
15. Rice 32-15 3-1 15
16. Louisiana State 31-14 2-1 16
17. Missouri 31-13 1-3 14
18. Arizona State 29-17 1-2 17
19. South Carolina 32-12 2-1 19
20. Louisiana-Lafayette 38-9 3-1 21
21. Mississippi 32-13 5-0 NR
22. Florida State 35-13 2-2 24
23. North Carolina State 32-13 2-1 NR
24. Stanford 24-15 0-1 20
25. Southern California 27-15 1-3 22

'Mad Hot Ballroom'

The YMCA was giving out free vouchers for 2 tickets to this documentary playing at an arthouse theater last week so I grabbed one. After reading a bit about the story I was pretty excited to check it out, so tonight was the night and I treated Dara to a free movie. ;) I won't retell the storyline, you can check it out on the movie's website. I will tell you, though, that the movie is a blast. I have never heard Dara laugh that often or that loud during a movie. The kids provide some great comedy and some great insights with their comments, actions, and expressions. I didn't know until I checked out the website that I guess we were treated to a sneak preview of the film. It opens in NYC on May 13 and in selected other cities on May 20. If you get the chance, check it out, or at least be sure to get it from Netflix!

Greenleafs in town!

Dara and I went downtown on Saturday night to meet up with Connie & Steve, who were in town for a little Chicago getaway. Before meeting up for dinner, Dara & I popped in & out of some shops on Michigan Ave for a bit. We found an Adidas store that was VERY cool and had all kinds of shoes and clothing that I had never seen before, so I will definitely be going back there before leaving Chicago. Nothing else really noteworthy, so we walked down to Frontera Grill and as we were turning towards the door to enter, this man is walking by and hands us the pager/beeper that they give you when you are on the waiting list and says "See if you can use this, we've been waiting awhile and one of our party is sick and we have to leave." I ask what name its under and he says "Burns, party of 3." So, I go up to the maitre d' and ask if it would be possible to add 1 to the Burns party. She looks us up and says "Oh yeah, that's fine, did you go walk around outside, we paged you a while ago?" I say, "Yes, we did." She replies, "Alright, round up your party and we are ready to seat you." Just like that we bypassed the at least 90 minute wait for a table. So our night was off on the right foot! The four of us enjoyed some very fun conversation and I had the best margarita I've ever had. It wasn't syrupy or sweet. It was very light, fresh and great. Steve & I both ordered the special, which was ribs (beef, incredibly soft and tender, falling off the bone) in a red mole with green beans and black beans and came with warm corn tortillas. Connie had the black bean tamale and Dara had another tamale dishes, this one cooked in a stacked or lasanga style. Everything was wonderful. AND to top of the meal, afer I had told Connie that I was all disappointed to not catch a glipse of the man, Rick Bayless, the first time I was there, who should appear in his white chefs jacket walking through the place, talking to customers? It was the icing on my Frontera cake.
For dessert, there is a dessert restaurant (that's right, all it serves is dessert) that Connie wanted to check out and it is one that Dara had heard about too, so we walked over to Sugar. The decor was very hipster-meets-Willy Wonka, and the menu was a gas to read. One of the co-owners has a masters in literature and he writes the menu, we found out. Ranging from the 'Tell-tale Tart' to 'Interpretation of Creams' to 'Creme & Punishment'. Unfortunately, Dara & I agreed that the product was not as spectacular as we were expecting. Steve's tiramisu, my chocolate creme brulee, Connie's 'MacDeth by chocolate' chocolate souflee with liquid center and Dara's 'Finnigan's Cake' were all tasty, none were notable or memorable. The place is definitely a chic hot spot and we were lucky to get a table when we did, it was packed and the line was out the door upon our leaving.
So, Thank you thank you thank you to the Greenleafs for a great time. It was a wonderfully fun & decadent evening.

Oklahoma coach is not OK

(the title is a play on the 'Oklahoma is OK' slogan)

Way down south, in Dixie....

20 some years of coaching, 4 CWS appearances, 2 public racial comments and 1 resignation.

01 May 2005

It's planting season in the Heartland!

Or watch out or you will get squished!! Yesterday as I was driving north on the bridge on M16 out of Farragut I was on the cell phone when I realized I was an ant among giants in the farming world. I was in between 2 24 row planters , a seed auger(huge, think McLaren farms, yes it had their name on the side) had just passed me on the other side of the road. In front of that machine was a anhydrous sprayer that looked 3 stories high, behind the seed auger was the biggest water tank truck I have ever seen., waiting to turn on to M16 was a 12 row planter. Everyone had to wait at the bridge because only one machine fit through at a time. The farmers are at it fast and furious. It was such a funny scene I found myself laughing out loud, only after I was safely across the bridge though. :)