Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The official announcement



So it’s been nearly two months since we moved to Brooklyn Heights. Highlights of the move included the previous tenant’s shit all over the apartment the day we moved in, resulting in our 80 year old landlord’s inability to get inside to clean the place, resulting in eight years worth of refracted pee on the wall next to the toilet.

But that’s ancient history now. Our place is big and clean and (mostly) pee-free.

Then there’s our neighborhood. In Tribeca, our window was right at the intersection of two one-way streets and a dead end. Nearly everyone driving down our street discovered this fact 10 feet below our window, and decided that the most effective way to correct the problem was to hold the horn. Not honk. Hold.

Now? The silence is almost holy. It’s angelic. Now when I walk Franny at midnight in my underpants, there are no homeless people to scoff at how slovenly I’m dressed, no blacked out strip club patrons, no Fresh Direct trucks idling outside our bedroom window, no dim-witted protesters, no sketchy Fox news vans, no quote unquote mosques as a next door neighbor.

It’s nothing but tree lined streets and brownstones and dogs and babies. In short, people just like us…

Well, almost like us.

Our baby boy isn't due until May.

Monday, September 13, 2010

change of pace


Well, we did it. We found a new apartment. After a monthlong search, Crissy’s organizational booster rockets exploded out of her eyeballs, and she rode both of our brokers’ lazy nutsacks right into a beautiful three flat in Brooklyn Heights.

It was really impressive the way she pitted these bastards against each other, ramping up the competition, and lighting a fire under both of their asses by doing our own simultaneous Craigslist search. If we’re paying these sons of bitches six thousand dollars to find us a god damn rental unit, Crissy was gonna make them work for their money.

We haven’t covered this much in the blog yet, but we decided to move to Brooklyn almost a year ago. Since then, everyone in Manhattan has been trying to give us a big city pep talk, like moving to Brooklyn means we’re throwing in the towel and moving to South Dakota.

Have you looked on the Lower East Side?? Have you considered the Upper West Side?? Have you considered a refrigerator box alongside the West Side Highway?

The answer is yes, we have. We’d love to stay in Manhattan. But we want more space, and last I checked, we don’t manage hedge funds. Because the starting rent for a clean, bedbug-free 2 bedroom in any decent neighborhood is just over four grand a month. That’s if your broker is lucky enough to find you one, after you’ve been anal raped by…er…paid them their fifteen percent cut.

On top of that, it’s starting to feel like TriBeCa is conspiring to drive us out of the city. The anti-Park51 community center demonstrations are heating up (the loudest and dumbest was this past weekend on September 11th), the sound of the construction surrounding our building can only be described as warlike, and NYC’s hottest summer on record served up every foul, repulsive, soul-melting stench this city has to offer.

Don’t get us wrong. We love you Manhattan. But we’re ready.

P.S. Here's a pic of some of the horses asses parked outside our apartment this past weekend. More on that later...

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

details, details


They had to go there, didn't they.

Monday, August 30, 2010

curve-breakin'


A lot of people ask for money on the subway. All of those people should be pissed at this guy's group of curve-busting panhandlers, who bust out full-on breakdancing routines on moving trains.

I'm not talking about some half-assed robot either. I'm talking backspins, handstands, backflips.

Yes, backflips.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

bedbuggin' out


Crissy’s been trying to get me to freak out about bedbugs for about a year now. I wasn’t having it.

I thought bedbugs were the stuff of nursery rhymes until I Googled them. Not a good plan in the middle of August. Suddenly this scuzzy-ass city seems mighty bedbug-friendly.

And it is. They’re everywhere.

First they shut down the Hollister store on Broadway. Then they popped up in Victoria’s Secret and Abercrombie & Fitch. They shut down a couple advertising agencies for a few days, including Euro RSCG Worldwide.

They’ve popped up in the New York Public library, the Empire State Building, and the Time Warner Center. Most recently, they’ve begun shutting down movie theaters.

But you know how they really know it’s an epidemic? Because rich people get them too. Which is the only good thing about bedbugs. Everything else sucks.

I guess you have to pay NASA eight billion dollars to burn your house down and shave your head if you have them. They’re like cockroaches. Except they live in your bed. And drink your blood.

So now we’re all freaked out, because we’re planning on moving to Brooklyn in October, and our new apartment is obviously going to have them. And even if it doesn’t, I can’t stop shopping at Victoria’s Secret.

P.S. This is a picture of my wife and dog, surrounded by bedbugs.

Monday, August 23, 2010

hey, that's great


There’s been a lot of controversy over this proposed Ground Zero Mosque lately. Except, of course, it’s not exactly at Ground Zero. It’s a couple blocks north, at 51 Park Place.

Our address? 53 Park Place.

Having a national debate as a next-door neighbor has been very interesting. And by interesting, I mean supremely annoying.

Of course, nobody seemed to care about the community center/mosque/ex-Burlington coat factory back in December. But now that elections are coming up? It’s been a steady stream of news vans, overly-coiffed newscasters, and weirdo protesters with very little drawing/spelling ability.

The newscasters are usually there until roughly midnight, which means, at the very least, our late night walks with Franny are blindingly well lit. It also serves to remind us that, according to Fox news, Franny’s apparently been peeing on hallowed ground for the last year and a half.

But none of that was any match for the powerful annoyingness that was the anti mosque demonstration yesterday. Luckily, we were properly forewarned and left town, heading up to my friend Kurt’s house in Newburgh for the day.

It was, by all accounts, exactly as advertised: loud, dumb, and ugly.

And at the risk of getting all political here, I’ll just say this: the towers were not attacked by a religion. They were attacked by a small group of psychos who are slavish to fanatical dogma.

But, of course, that’s Micky Mouse stuff compared to our own corporate sociopaths; the people who are actively poisoning our food and water, f*cking our financial system, taking out life insurance policies on ailing employees, and spraying cancer all over the Gulf of Mexico, all in the name of Corporate America’s one true religion…

The Bottom Line.

Sorry to get all preachy. It’s just that, when it’s so in your face, it’s hard to forget that this is exactly the kind of bullshit controversy drummed up to distract people from actual problems just before elections. The bad guy needs a face, and it really helps if that face looks different than ours.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

July 4th, a retrospective


While we’re on the subject of missing our favorite people from Chicago, my sister Heather and brother-in-law Tom came to visit us on the 4th of July (god we haven’t posted in a long time)

If you don’t know my sister, she writes an infinitely braver and more inspiring (not to mention 10 times more prolific) blog here. She and Tom were in desperate need of a little impromptu vacationing. We were thrilled they picked NYC as one of their destinations.

Friday night was pizza at a new Mario Batali joint, where the waiter incorrectly corrected my pronunciation of the wine. Then, off to drinks at my current favorite 19th century Victorian bar Lillie’s in Union Square, where Heather noted how much more pleasant it is to be waited on by attractive people. We all agreed.

Saturday morning was a hike through Central Park, where we drank vodka lemonades at the boathouse to fuel our rowboat rental adventure. It turns out rowing a boat is hard work. And, according to the number of times we rammed other boats, sort of confusing.

After Central Park, we took a cab to Num Pang, a stupidly delicious Vietnamese sandwich joint near my office, where we crushed our sandwiches, discussed the porn movie theater across the street, and discovered I’d left my phone in the cab. Most. Rookie. Move. Ever.

When I called my phone, the cab driver answered. “I left my phone in your cab,” I enlightened him. “You left your phone in my cab,” he replied.

Apparently god wanted to prove to Heather and Tom that New Yorkers weren’t all dicks, because the next thing the cab driver said to me was, “I’ll drive it back to you.”

Huh?

10 minutes later, the cab driver pulled up and handed me my phone. A drunken homeless guy passed by right at that moment to remind me, in case I hadn’t fully grasped the enormity of the event, “You a lucky motherf*cker.” I couldn’t agree more.

That night, we were hoping to catch a show at the Comedy Cellar, but it was sold out…yet again. So we improvised by going to an excellent Cuban restaurant in the East Village with crazy awesome weirdo mixed drinks, and freakishly good food. We ended the night at a new bar called 9th Ward, where Tom and I took turns scoffing at a sleeveless bartender.

Sunday was the 4th, so we took it easy, and did a little sneaker shopping for Tom. Heather picked out two pairs of super-Euro Puma slippers, before we decided men’s sneaker shopping was not her strong suit. We found Tom two pairs of sweet kicks and hit the road.

That evening was the big event-the fireworks. We bought tickets for a water taxi that takes you right out onto the Hudson, a couple hundred yards from the barge where they launch the fireworks. The show was incredible, I’m pretty sure. Anyway, we drank a ton of canned beer.

After a sloppy meal of Halal street meat right outside Heather and Tom’s hotel, Crissy and Heather decided the night should be over. And they were right. But just to be sure, Tom and I went to a local dive to play some pool. When we almost got our asses handed to us by obvious high school kids, we realized it was time to go home.

When they took off the following morning, Crissy and I were both sorry to see them go. But despite our sadness, their visit reminded me of the sage words a man once said to me:

“You a lucky motherf*cker.”

Brighton Beach



We met up with Alex’s parents’ friends back in Brighton Beach around 5ish. Vitaly and Alla were an older couple in their 70s. She spoke English, he didn’t. Alex spoke to them in Russian, and translated for us. It was fascinating watching him switch back and forth from English to Russian. I asked them if Alex spoke Russian with an American accent. They said no, he speaks like a 20 year old. I decided that must mean he tells a lot of inappropriate dick jokes.



We sat down for a meal at Tatiana’s, an outdoor restaurant on the Boardwalk. Our large, shave-headed waiter Sasha wore knockoff Carrera sunglasses, only spoke in Russian, and obviously broke people’s kneecaps as a side gig. It was all very exciting.

Vitaly snapped his fingers a few times, and people started bringing things to our table. The first thing they brought was a chilled liter of vodka on ice, which Sasha began pouring into small, shot sized glasses to the right of everyone’s plate. Vitaly and Alla held up their glasses. Nazdaróvye! To your health! Nothing healthy followed.



The food came in mountains. Piles of pickled items- pickled tomatoes, pickled beets, pickled pickles. Wagonfuls of lamb, chicken, cured meats, cow’s tongue, yes cow’s tongue, breads, sauces, potatoes…

And vodka. So much vodka.

Every 10 minutes, we toasted. Can you believe what a gorgeous day it is? Nazdaróvye! This lamb is incredible. Nazdaróvye! Does anyone want any more sauce? Nazdaróvye! I have to go to the bathroom. Nazdaróvye!

The weird thing is, when you stuff that much food into your face, the vodka doesn’t crush you like you think it’s going to. I mean, don’t get me wrong, we were hammered. But nobody was taking pictures with lamps yet. So we ordered more vodka.



After two more half-size bottles, we decided to call a van to take us back to Manhattan. The mountains of food and presence of elders had kept our drunkenness pretty much in check until that point. But as soon as they put us in that van and sent us on our way, things got ugly.



The first thing we needed, obviously, was more vodka. You know, for the ride. The next thing we needed, were Russian ice cream cones. I don’t remember what they’re called, but god damn it they were good. The Russian driver drove us safely back to our apartment, talking Alex’s ear off in Russian about his kids.

What followed in our apartment was such an embarrassing display of sloppy idiocy that nobody should have to re-experience it, even in blog form. Suffice it to say there was a lot of bad dancing, loud singing, fighting over what song should be played next, and high decibel, low IQ conversations. Alex rode a bike through our apartment wearing a helmet. Christine’s brother Don drunk texted a girl he wanted to ask out. We all weighed in on what it should say.

Somewhere, videos of this liver-aching nightmare exist. The world would be a smarter, happier place if they un-existed.

We miss you already guys. Come back soon.

Coney Island


I know...we suck.

Sometimes, no matter how hard we try to avoid it, homesickness sneaks up on us. It crawls out of the most unlikely of places to remind us how much we miss our favorite people back in Chicago.

Its latest insidious tactic is to slither out of the toilet bowl and crawl out from behind the couch cushions to remind us that we pay 3k a month for a 600 square foot apartment. Yeah, you read that right.

Which is why Alex and Christine coming to visit us a couple weeks back couldn’t have come at a better time.



I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before, but one of the best things about friends and family coming to visit us in New York is that we get to try out all the New Yorky stuff we wouldn’t normally do by ourselves. This time, we got to check two of them off our list: Coney Island, and Brighton Beach.

Let’s start with Coney Island.



You know how sometimes aggressively unattractive people wear skin-tight crop-tops that read In Your Dreams? That’s Coney Island. It’s also crazy and weird and awesome, but it’s tons of In Your Dreams.

The first thing we noticed was a small, semi-pornographic dance party in broad daylight, with a healthy mix of three year old children dancing alongside shirtless gentlemen simulating slow, passionate lovemaking with the boardwalk. We shuffled along.



Next we checked out an attraction called “Shoot the Freak,” which was a paint ball shooting range advertising “live human targets.” We watched a man pay his money and step up to the gun, as a shirtless Mexican dude donned a helmet, picked up a garbage lid shield, and sadly shuffled from side to side. The shooter bided his time for the kill shot. We moved along.



Next was Luna Park. That’s the part with all the actual rides. I’m riding the Cyclone! I’m riding that spinny pukey thing! I…eh… you have to buy tickets. Let’s just drink beer.



So we drank beers in the blazing sun, thought about standing in line for a Nathan’s dog, sauntered out on the pier, watched people fish with chicken wings for bait, and watched a family enjoy a pork chop picnic on the beach. It was pretty awesome.

Then suddenly, without warning, Alex stopped drinking beer.

It was a very curious thing. But we pretended we didn’t notice. Besides, we were heading back to Brighton Beach soon for an early dinner, so he had plenty of time to catch up.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Hi Tom

Kevin's dad is threatening to never read the blog again if we don't update soon. This is my lame attempt to tide him over until Kevin writes about our trip to Brighton Beach, NY this past weekend...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

In that case, do whatever you want


last week the missus and I were walking the bean through our neighborhood, when we looked up to see a big fat man approaching us with his dog off the leash.

This drives us crazy.

There just doesn't seem to be any upside to having your dog off the leash in the middle (OK, southern tip) of Manhattan, where there's constant construction, mad cyclists, asshole drivers, rumbling subways, tourists, families, trash, broken glass, cannons, frisbees, bows and arrows, and flying goats.

Seriously though. What is the upside? It makes you look cooler? It makes you look like the ultimate master? We don't get it.

So we tighten our grip on Fran, warming up our face muscles in preparation for the biggest, ugliest stinkeyes we can deliver to this dumbass with his dog off the leash, when we look up into the fat, bearded face of...

James Gandolfini.

As befitting of every character he's ever played, he wasn't the friendliest dude, refusing to look either of us in the eye while our dogs sniffed each others' butts. But then again, he had a lot on his mind, what with his dog off the leash in the middle of Manhattan.

Dumbass.

Anyway, now that our dog has been approached by both Edie Falco (twice), and James Gandolfini, one thing's for sure...

She's a huge Journey fan.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Thursday, May 20, 2010

so far so good


Well, I’ve been at Mekanism for about a month and a half now, which I think is enough time to get a pretty decent read on the place. Here’s the good, the bad, and the ugly...

THE GOOD
I left a massive, lumbering giant of an agency, and joined a small, lightening fast, well-respected shop. When you’re in the business of creative problem solving, it’s pretty rare that layers and layers of approvals are going to make the ideas any better. More often than not, it turns them into warty, three-armed, club-footed Quasimodos with terrible B.O. By keeping the staffers to a bare minimum, we can focus on coming up with good ideas and selling them, rather than defending them against hordes of internal job justifiers.

I have a ton of faith in this shop’s ability to execute. Most agencies don’t actually make the things they come up with. Typically, they outsource that to a production company or a digital shop. I joined a place that makes everything, and Mekanism’s full of scarily talented weirdos.

I’m helping build an office. The company is based in San Francisco, and they hired me to be a lead creative here in New York. So far, there are 5 of us: two directors, a producer, an office production assistant, and me. It’s exciting, and scary, and…did I mention scary?

THE BAD
Right now, we’re in a temporary office at a place called Techspace, right near Union Square. It’s a tiny little 450 square foot space with no Wifi and bad plumbing. We’ve been searching like mad for 5,000 sq ft loft spaces in Soho, but in the meantime, I‘ve flooded the shit out of the toilet...twice.

Communication with San Francisco is less than ideal. First of all, there’s the three-hour time difference. Second of all, concepting sessions via conference call really suck. Every call sounds like a mumblers anonymous convention in an airplane hangar through a can on a string. We’re working on a solution for this.

THE UGLY
There’s a highly active methadone clinic/AIDS rehabilitation center on the 5th floor of this building. Which makes the incredibly small, maddeningly slow elevators that much less bearable.

Oh, and the elevators are under construction. So only one of them works. Which is awesome.

P.S. I was directly responsible for the appearance of this sign

Sunday, April 4, 2010

here we go again



Well, my friends. I've got some exciting news.

I quit my job a couple weeks ago.

Tomorrow is my first day at a new agency called Mekanism, sort of a digital production company/agency based out of San Francisco. I'll be working out of their New York office.

Why change jobs now, you ask?

As anyone who's ever jumped jobs knows, these things tend to move at a glacial pace. And this one was no exception.

Remember when I was going through that horrific Microsoft pitch about a year ago? You know, this one?

Well, right about that time I decided that I wasn't interested in trading my sanity for a paycheck. So I started reaching out to some old friends, just to see what was out there. And I began talking pretty seriously about coming on board full time with Mekanism.

The only catch was that I couldn't leave JWT before September, or I'd have to pay them back the money they spent relocating us to NYC. So I bided my time.

During that time, JWT finally listened to my cries of anguish, and transferred me off Microsoft, and onto...

Diapers.

But here's the thing. Working on diapers was the most fun I'd ever had working at JWT. Which made leaving a lot harder than it would've been a year ago.

Problem is, working on diapers was the most fun I was likely to ever have working at JWT. So it was time to go.

Anyway, it took until March to finally close the deal. And now, here we are, on the eve of a new adventure.

Luckily, I caught a cold during my going away party, so hopefully I'll make a great first impression by getting everyone sick.

Wish me luck dudes.

P.S. Oh, about that picture. This is how they shoot close-up shots of diapers. It's one of the most disturbing things I've ever seen in my life.

Friday, March 12, 2010

First Class


For the second time in two weeks I had to fly to London for a quick work trip. The first time I went I flew coach. On the way home from that trip, the flight was canceled due to snow, so my work friend and I had to fly into Boston then get driven to NYC in a blizzard by a crazy man. We got home at 4:30am. I would elaborate more on that story but my brain has blocked the experience from my memory.

But this trip was different. We sprung for business class, and upon boarding the plane, I realized that American Airlines had bumped me up a notch. I have NEVER flown first class but I learned that I could certainly get used to it, fast. I walked on the plane and looked around, and was a little disoriented. What was happening? Why are the flight attendants so nice? They asked if they could hang my coat. HANG MY COAT?!? The pilot smiled and waved from his compartment, and angels sang. Then we were off. As soon as they were free to get up, the lovely flight attendants took care of my every whim. "Would you like your pillow fluffed?", "Can I get you a mimosa?", "May I wipe your behind, please?" (or something like that). But seriously - Burt's Bees products, Bose headphones, consomme, and ICE CREAM. It was incredible.

I landed in London refreshed, clean and for the first time in my entire life, sad that the flight was over. How will I ever go back to coach?

Monday, March 8, 2010

really?


We used to live next to this crazy chick who was so histrionic with her, uh, relation-making, that Crissy wanted to bring a golden Oscar statuette back from Hollywood to place outside her door.

Unfortunately, she never got around to buying the Oscar before the girl moved out.

Then the new guy moved in.

The new guy is a tall, suave, Spanish dude who likes to throw loud dinner parties at least once a week.

There are a few things that seem to be pretty consistent with his parties.

1. They like to cook big-ass feasts.
2. They like to play loud-ass music.
3. They like to speak loudly in Spanish
4. They like to smoke cigars.

Cigars.

When you live in an apartment the size of a walk-in closet, highly pungent, offensive smells tend to linger. Trust me, I'm lactose intolerant.

But there is no more offensive smell on earth than day old cigar smoke on your towels.

The thing is, since we share a vent with this guy, their little cigar hotbox sessions turn our entire apartment into a 600 square foot wet ashtray at around 3am. Usually, it's so offensive it wakes us up.

It's a real problem.

We've complained about it twice now. We'll see if anything comes of it.

One thing's for sure...it's making us miss the hell out of that crazy chick.

P.S. I'm in LA shooting diaper commercials, so I don't have any recent pics. Please enjoy this old pic of our mini Thanksgiving feast.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

app nerdery






A buddy at work just introduced me to this iPhone app called CrossProcess, that makes your crappy iPhone pics look all faded and Polaroidy. Not bad for a buck.

Doesn't everything look so painfully cool? You'd never guess that you were actually looking at:

A project manager hassling me about my diaper commercials.

An overheated cab from inside a Starbucks.

My partner Tweeting.

The alley where we take Franny to poo. We call it Poo Alley.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Snowmageddon


Last week New York got hit with a big ass snow storm that everyone was freaking out about. Just as the first snowflakes began to trickle out of the clouds, New Yorkers pointed to the sky, dropped bags of groceries in the street, and bolted the doors of their underground snow bunkers.

Was it pretty snowy? Sure. Was it the coming of the apocalypse? Hardly.

But you know who wasn't complaining? This guy. Cause guess who got a snow day out of it. This guy.

Seriously, when was the last time you got a snow day? 3rd grade? 4th grade? I mean, we probably got 6 or 7 inches of snow (mayyyybe), and you would have thought frogs were falling from the sky.

To be honest, the city was really beautiful for, like, four minutes.

Luckily, most of the snow is gone by now, leaving behind the scuzzy gray crust that had city kids rejoicing in the streets, prompting crust ball fights and crust angels as far as the eye could see.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

McBowlerson


When we first got to this city, I was a little concerned with how cool everyone was. It just seems too exhausting to keep up with. Your pants have to be tighter, your shoes have to be more neon, your scowl more scowley.

But the longer we’re here, the more we realize that very few of the people who act like douchey New Yorkers are actually from New York. It’s like this special douche bag peacock effect, meant to distract people from finding out that they’re really from Topeka, Kansas. (No offense, Topeka)

In fact, we’ve found most people to be totally normal and nice and not too cool to join, say, our Wednesday night advertising bowling league.

Even more refreshing is the fact that nobody on our team cares how bad I suck ass at bowling. Naturally, the missus is like a regular Walter Ray Williams Jr. (what? You don’t know Ray Ray?), rolling consistent 120’s.

I, on the other hand, am lucky to break a hundo on any given night, which, according to Google, makes me a regular Michael Fechke.

Whoever that is.

Anyway, here’s a blurry picture of 4/7ths of our team, entitled Bowler? I Hardly Know Her.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Today's Lesson


The NYC subway train doors are NOT - I repeat - NOT as easy to hold open as the kind, polite and wonderfully gentle CTA train doors.

On the way home from work tonight I got into it with the freakishly strong doors and won. Barely. (I received the gift of a sweet purple leg bruise and a sore forehead) THIS WAS THE NOISE THAT SHOT OUT OF MY MOUTH AS WE FOUGHT.

Also good to note that the entire car was completely silent and full of people.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

'On The Road Again' Was Stuck in My Head For a Week



By now you've probably caught up on the Great Vac-asian of '09 and if you haven't, you should. It's a nice long read for those of you looking to kill a few hours (I kid, Kev, I kid).

But seriously. It's been so long since I've updated that it took me a good minute or two to remember my login and password for this site! I'm thinking that writing about our recent trip home will help ease my brain back into blogging. Wanna hear it? Here it goes!

Since Franny is now the head of the household, she decided we would be driving home for Christmas this year. And lucky for Kev, I like to loudly obsess about how awful I expect something to be until after it's over just so I can say "Huh. That wasn't so bad." And I was right - it wasn't bad at all! Kev was a warrior, driving almost straight through on the way there, and even kept his hands at 10 and 2 on the wheel at all times. I was incredibly impressed. But neither of us trust my driving so it was for the best that he was the one behind the wheel.

We listened to a horrifically voice-overed audiobook for roughly 12 minutes, but had to turn it off before our ears started bleeding. We quickly swapped that hot mess out with a little David Cross stand-up (good god that man is hilariously angry) and of course, David Sedaris. Duh. So we tooted along through New York and New Jersey (got lost for a minute and ended up at Newark Airport what WHAAAAAAT?!) and finally made it to sweet, sweet I-80. Wove through Pennsylvania, flattened out around Ohio, sputtered through Indiana until we finally arrived at Christine and Alex's doorstep exhausted and cranky at 1:30AM.

The rest of the trip was a tornado of friends, family, dogs, dogs and more dogs. But it was so much god damn fun. I think we'll do it again next year. Right, Cap'n Kev?