Escape from New York

Jen and Tom had no intention of staying in New York during the Republican National Convention (let alone the US Open, and homegames for the Mets & Yankees). It was determined that Ohio was far enough away.

Jen went to school in Ohio and swore that she would never return. But she had gone too long without seeing her friend Marsha and her daughter, Emily.

Tom, on the other hand, had actually been begging to visit Ohio. Specifically, Sandusky. Not for the corn, but for the roller coasters at Cedar Point. So exciting are the world famous coasters, that Jen and Tom’s friend Skull had to come along for the trip (at least the three days in Sandusky). Our host Matt also joined for one of the days.

We spent two days at the park (and three nights at the Hotel Breakers; right on Lake Erie and next to the park’s entrance). We also visited the water park (“Soak City”) and had an somewhat delirious (tired) game of mini-golf.

Our favorite ride turned out to be the “Millenium Force“, an incredible 310 feet high that streaks at 93mph.

Another incredible ride is the “Top Thrill Dragster“. This one reaches 420 feet straight up. It takes you from 0 to 120mph in a neck breaking 4 seconds. Jen and our friend Matt both tried to use the “pregnant women” escape…but the 1year old girls in front of us guilted them into it.

Tom really enjoyed the “Wicked Twister“, a huge horn-shaped ride on the beach that twists as it rises into the air. Magnetic induction motors zip you forward and backwards, gaining additional momentum each time it passes the starting position.

All in all, it was a thrilling two days of coaster mania. Well worth the trip!

Jersey Golfin’

Oru friend Elizabeth seems to get really excited about golf…that is until she gets off the first tee. But that seems to be the lot for golfers. She’ll learn that soon. We all seem to get one shot per outing that reminds us why we like chasing a tiny white ball around with a stick.

Here, Tom is showing off his prowess with a driver. After this shot, he changed to using a 2 iron.

Clear Ice

Several months ago at a business dinner, somehow, the coversation turned to the topic of “ice”. My friend Greg educated us all on the wonders of “clear ice” and how it differed from the typical stuff found in our freeze.

You see, freezer ice traps pockets of air during the freezing process. This results in the traditional “cloudy” ice. “Clear ice”, Greg explained, it frozen molecule by molecule as water flows over a cold metal plate. As a result, when it is ready, the ice is crystal clear.

I have long been a friend of clear ice, but I always refered to it as “store bought” as I didn’t have an ice machine. Greg, on the other hand, has a unit in his wet bar. Specifically, the “U-Line clr2060“.

I researched the clr2060 and discovered it cost around $2,000. A quick calculation indicated that I could by a bag of ice every day for 20 years before getting a return on investment (oddly, Greg is a consultant for Accenture. It appears he isn’t familiar with the ROI concept.)

Greg recently sent me some pictures of his ice machine (there is is in the background). I have to admit, I am kinda jealous…ROI be damned.