Galaxy down in SuperLiga, but solid(ish)

Caught the Galaxy vs Pachuca match tonite for the SuperLiga final. Painful painful first half. Got there late, just in time for an own-goal and the team to fall apart. But halftime was near. I got a dos equis and got tense with some soccer buddies. Half two was amazing. Both teams had a ton of chances. Tough to say who got the better of it, but then we were in for a surprise. In stoppage time, around the 95th minute, a cross, a header, a crossbar, a swat by the goalie, players heading the ball, and then Klein, you could see it coming, Klein throws one leg, then the other, Klein executes an absolutely awe-inspiring bicycle kick, barely slotting a defender, flacidly attempting to throw his head in the way, and the post, well out of the keeper’s reach. Beautiful. Everyone is on their feet. The mostly hispanic audience (no American English station was close to carrying this cup) and we few Galaxy supporters. I bought tequila.

We shared the excitement. The game went into overtime. Beckham returned from the locker room after his injury wearing a ridiculous suit. We all laughed. And overtime was scoreless. And we wend into kicks to decide. Vagenas, who placed the own goal in the first half, also missed his PK for the Galaxy. Rough night. Fortunately, Cannon made a save. After the Pachuca player shanked shot 5, Donovan (hero) approached. He sent it to the keeper, who received the ball handily. Doesn’t he do that most of the time on PKs? Great player, I just don’t see much in his PKs. Ever. Anyway, Xavier missed his next one by a mile (he had a terrible game as well…sometimes we need to adjust). It was a great game. Way to go Galaxy. Congrats Pachuca.

Update: Didn’t take too long for this to make it onto youtube. For Pete’s sake, watch it.

A little note to DaveKnows

Hi Dave. I’d email you but amazingly I don’t have your address. Weird. Anyway, I always forget to mention this when I see you, but I’d comment on your blog but I am not going to register. I’ve registered for enough crap and I’m not gonna put my crap into your system and wait for you to generate a password and email it to me and then click on a link to verify and then leave my f’ing comment.

Que sera. I’d live in silence about it but then I read your Timbers post. What the fuck? It was a great game. But are you saying that the 15000 of us who don’t stand with the army aren’t fans? I’m hoarse after every fucking game, wear green, stand when we’re close. I’ve gotten personal reactions from opposing players for the harassment I’ve delivered, players who eventually received cards.

Trust me. I love the army. I think y’all do great stuff. But y’all can suck eggs if you think you’re the only timbers fans in town. So take a load off and quit feeding me that crap.

Update: Wow, just reread this baby and it sounds way harsher than intended. I’ve been a bit frustrated with some of the Timbers Army BS (love the army, keep being agro…but there are other ways to appreciate the Timbers). Dave is a buddy of mine, so I was trying to flip him a bit of smack in the process. Good friends, good people. Anyway, go Timbers. And thanks for getting rid of the registration thang.

Nutshell and the topsy-turvy world that’s in it

A priest, a rabbi, and a monk walk into a bar. The priest orders a a beer and a burger (it’s Friday), the rabbi orders a pickled sausage, and the monk gets a non-Belgian beer. Maybe I’ll come up with a punchline later, but that’s a good illustration of just how bizarre this post gets. We (three omnivores) went to Nutshell, a completely vegan restaurant. They were fairly busy. We could’ve sat at a table, but opted to wait on the couches in the back gallery section for a booth. More cozy. While we waited, the nice lady brought us some wine and bread (non gratis). You get a selection of breads to pick from, we went with one sampler and one 400-million grain naan. Add to that selections of olive oil and salt(?!) and there’s a pretty fun taste experience to kickoff the meal.

So we got our seat after a bit, and N happened to know one of the vegans in the booth next to us, so they chatted through the cage-like bars for a bit, while we hammered out our meal selections…there were many things I couldn’t quite identify. Burdock and various vegan cheeses mostly. We settled on a spinach turnover sorta thing for appetize, Ryan got the sandwich, N had the living lasagna, and I got charred kale and potatoes gratin.

The lasagna was amazing. By living, I think they meant no pasta noodles. It was a stack of tomato, avocado, vegan ricotta, pesto, and other stuff pressed and cut to serve like lasagna. And it was great. Ryan’s sandwich was also fabulous. Fresh ingredients, ample avocado, and served on a vegan sticky bun…it had great texture and great flavor. My items were really good as well. A light char to the kale gave it a really well-rounded flavor. The potatoes gratin was a bit less exciting, but it was good. It’d been described with a bit more of a chile twist, and I had expected a bit more of that. Finally, I go to the beginning for the spinach turnover. It was probably the least impressive part of the meal. Still pretty good, but it really could’ve been packed with more spinach filling…it came out more as a fried bread than a stuffed doodad.

We were too full for dessert. And I totally spaced ordering a smoothie like I’d intended. But we will be back. And soon. Because Nutshell was really friggin good. Pricewise, it’s affordable and well worth the cost, but only the WW would call Nutshell’s prices cheap eats.

Find Nutshell at 3808 N Williams Ave. If it’s too crowded and you’re starved, cruise up the street a bit further to Dalo’s. Check other reviews all over, but quickly: Stumptown Vegans and VeganFabulous.

So the Priest and the Rabbi forgot their wallets, but luckily the monk had a thousand bucks. Now you know the sound of one grand flapping. cheers. Maybe you can do better…

Deluxe week

Oh wow, it was a crazy week. I’m only just recovering. And I’m talking about last week, not the one we’re in now.

It started off Friday with a bachelor party. Me and some dudes went up to Vancouver BC to send Dustin off with style. It was a good time, we ate, wandered, laughed, drank, and did some obligatory bachelor party things. Good times.

Sunday night after the baseball game, I got dropped off at YVR (Vancouver’s airport) where I caught a flight to San Diego (SAN, in case you’re checking). My bro (brother) picked my ass up sometime after 1am, we went back to his place, “caught up” (read: drank beer and vodka drinks), and got the rest of his crap packed up the next morning. Then we drove to Portland, stopping to lunch with the grandparents and to crash at our mom’s pad in Modesto.

After spending a day in Portland getting Ryan moved in, we drove up to the northern Olympic Peninsula to go backpacking with pops. Dad chose the spot, we got our permits, bear box, tackle, and grub, and made our way to the trailhead in the Elwha Valley Friday morning.

We stayed at Boulder Creek campground Friday night. We’d been looking forward to the natural hot springs that evening after the short hike in, but they turned out to be pretty shallow and fairly gross. So we skipped the hot springs and made a few fruitless casts into Boulder creek. It’s fun to have steak the first night, so we did, and I made up some couscous to go with it.

After breaking camp Saturday morning, we began what was expected to be a relatively light climb to Boulder Lake. Reality frequently chooses not to reflect expectations. It was several miles straight uphill. Not a terribly difficult hike, but at least two of the three of us were in pretty mediocre shape, and it was fairly tough. But we made it, and once there we found a gorgeous pair of campsites on a small peninsula on the lake. It did snow a bit that night about 100ft above us, but my little Hubba was impervious.

We also caught a bunch of trout, so there was no need to eat the freeze-dried chicken we brought.

Dad cooked’em. Notice the Pasta-Roni. We had the noodles, then cooked a couple trout in the leftover sauce…it gave a nice italian sorta seasoning to the already yummy fish.

We hiked back down Sunday, had lunch at Boulder Creek, and headed back to dad’s to take advantage of the hot tub, since the hot springs were less than satisfying. I think Friday I wasn’t sore anymore.

New TJs in Hollywood!!!

Continuing on this odd consumption-oriented kick I’ve been on, Trader Joes moved out of their old location and into a new one two blocks away. And it is way better. Truly, seriously an improvement. Trust me when I tell you that even though I’ve not been closer than 100′ from the new location. Because the old location sucked eggs bigtime. It was cramped way beyond cat-swinging range. That many Joe’s shoppers packed that tightly just radiate bad mojo, and I feel it and it makes me want to go outside and sit on the curb and sulk, alone with the package of tamales that I managed to snag, holding it, realizing that I hadn’t paid and that I really really don’t want to wait in that line and do I really want the tamales that bad when I can go get cheaper better ones at Taqueria Don Pancho and so I drift into a pit of nihilistic despair I don’t care about the tamales or the lines or that I’m on Sandy Blvd on my knees beating the paved earth grinding the chicken tamales into my forehead yelling wishing (but not caring!) hearing some bad beats mixed with that weirdass happy Trader Joe’s music.

And the angels dropped from the heavens and delivered a new Trader Joes and the people rejoiced and bought stuff.

Beerfest vs Ikea

Okay, this is going to sound like heresy, but I did not attend the beerfest this weekend. At some point I made a hasty promise to the lady that we could hit Ikea on Friday in the afternoon. And I made good, got out of work early, and we cruised over to the massive furniture store. And we had a good time. It was pretty exhausting examining 4 billion pieces of furniture, but I really enjoy Ikea. They do small spaces well, and the house is fairly small. Or we just have too much crap. But the kitchen and bathroom are constant struggles for us, and we’ve got visions/dreams of making those spaces work better.

On the other hand, I love beer. And a bunch of friends were heading down there. Explaining to them that I was eating Swedish meatballs at a giant home furnishing store rather than quaffing delicious and exotic beers was a bit of a struggle for me. And comprehending that I’d rather wander the self-service warehouse trying to find a Kiflikener rather than check off my favorite IPA was a struggle for them.

And this beerdrinker doesn’t dig crowds too much. I avoid the winter brewfest like the plague, it’s just painful. And the best time to hit the International Brewer’s Festival is Friday afternoon, followed by early Saturday. Since Friday didn’t happen, I just had to bite the bullet. But I’m drinking my buddy’s homebrew now, and it is super tasty.

Oh, and I’m not weird or anything, but I had to cruise by Ikea on the eve of its grand opening, and got a coupla shots.