Greg Golightly

Apr 5, 2014

Spring Break 2014 wrap up

We had a lovely trip.  We have traveled to beaches with kids over the past decade, from Myrtle Beach to Gulf Shores to Marco Island (this was our 3rd time there).  We have always had other people with us and this was a bit different.  Just the 4 of us.  At times I was better just us, at times not as good.  Partially because we have traveled with some great people - Straws, my Mom, and or Jill’s family.  I really am so lucky to have Jill and these kids.  There is nothing more I could ask for.  We all make each other laugh, think, care and want to be better people.  

This was our first spring break and honestly as we total the actual cost, it will likely be our last.  Maybe if we drove … but going far enough south to make sure of good weather is a long drive.  

We did very very little. And that is just fine.  We were at the pool or the beach most of the day, every day.  We ate dinner in our condo every night but one, and cooked for all those except last night we got pizza.  

We did breakfast ourselves every day.

We did all but 2 lunches in our condo.  One was day one before our place was ready and one was last day as we were tired of the sandwiches we were making.

The travel was almost silly good.  Early morning Saturday flight - parked in long term and was on a shuttle in 5 minutes.  Check in was so fast I ended up not even being done with my latte before we went to security.  Security was fast.  Flight was bumpy, but right on time.  5 minutes to get a rental car (ended up in a nice Mazda CX9).  Condo ready on time.  Flight back - car return in 5 minutes, 10 minute check in, 15 minute security.  On time flight that was smooth until landing in high winds in Indy.  

Condo was okay.  Not all that high end, but quiet and great location.  And clean enough. It was kind of crazy in that you had use a key to get anywhere …onto property from beach or parking lot (which totally makes sense) as well into pool bathroom and main building (both of which are inside of the outer locked perimeter).  And it employed one of the least pleasant cleaning persons I have ever seen.  Every morning I would come back from Starbucks with my hands full - after somehow getting past the two gates I had to get through only to find her cleaning one of the two elevators (holding it open) which means the other would not come down.  She would not even act like she cared she was wasting people’s times.  First day, after 10 minutes I had to use the pool bathroom as I could not wait.  Then I learned to take stairs to floor 2 and then up (we were on 15).  

I read a few books.  Had fun with my kids and wife.  And we all relaxed.  2014 has been chaos for us.  Jan and part of Feb seemed to be in flux due to all the snow days.  And then Jill’s dad’s (are both of those words supposed to get a possessive apostrophe?) health turned very bad that ended in his passing a few weeks ago.  Jill and I, and thus our kids, do better in a repeatable pattern and as such this first quarter have been very hard.  We both relaxed and I think we are ready things to quiet down some.  

I read the 2nd divergent book - Holly is done with series and we started them together.  Don’t love 1st or 2nd book to be honest.  Not bad, just never really cared about anyone.  Read a mediocre book.  And one good one - Attachments by Rainbow Rowell (she did Elinor and Park, my favorite book of last year).  It is good and a perfect beach book.  Not as great as E&P by any means, but good.  

I love Marco Island.  I have great memories (thanks 3x to Buis Family).  Jill and I went with her family in summer of 2003; Jill and I only in Fall or 2004; Jill and her family - by that point way too many people in 2007); and then this trip in 2014.  It is a truly beautiful island that never feels overcrowded or too touristy.   

Mar 19, 2014

Winter fades away http://instagram.com/p/lujH22mdR4/

Winter fades away

Mar 18, 2014

Quiet moment http://instagram.com/p/lrsfV9mdTZ/

Quiet moment

Feb 23, 2014

"I am not a fan of things being open on Sundays, and expecting people to work"

—What I just overheard from a customer at a restaurant. On a Sunday

Feb 22, 2014

"No, I don’t think they do"

—Daughter Lauren, when hearing the Gene Simmons line “the call me Dr. Love” on radio

Feb 21, 2014

Just watched #metallica HOF induction from a few years ago again. 

Thoughts:

Jason is the classiest person ever.  So grounded and level.  He was so important to this band.  But I do think Rob is a better fit for Met.  More musical and just so comfortable in his own skin.

Also Jimmy Page is so awesome.  Hard to argue he is not the biggest legend during the end jam … and so content to hang back.  Few true greats are able to do that. 

Feb 19, 2014

"That was really moist"

—If said to wife about a cake she made, this is acceptable. If said to wife about the flatulence you just passed next to her in bed, it is not acceptable

Feb 1, 2014

Under the bridge http://instagram.com/p/j4Xjm9Gddy/

Under the bridge

Jan 30, 2014

OLD DRAFT THAT I FORGOT TO FINISH … Soccer - America’s sport of the future (since 1972)

I wrote this draft back in the summer and forgot to finish it.  So the ‘last night’ part is not accurate.  

I have some more drafts that are untimely that I will unleash soon.

"Soccer - America’s sport of the future (since 1972)"

That line is stolen from Men In Blazers (http://meninblazers.com/)

It is a smart joke about how soccer fans in the US have largely told anyone who will listen that soccer is growing and will soon start its rise to the top.  And that they have been doing so since the 70’s.

I used to hate when people would tell me that as I disagreed.  But a few years I changed from the listener to the preacher.  It is our sport of the future and you cannot rain on my parade of joyous belief!!!  Try as you might.  

Yesterday I saw Chelsea v Inter at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis and it was nearly a religious moment for me.  I saw the future and it is beautiful.  

As I drove down to Indy yesterday early afternoon it all seemed to be coming together.  In the morning I had been communicating with coaches that I am working with for my two kids soccer teams.  I drove by several soccer fields on the way to the pub.

I arrived downtown to see the streets populated with blue jerseys.  But not the NFL ones we are used to seeing downtown, rather Chelsea (my favorite team BTW).  It was hard to believe my eyes.  I found a pub and drank with strangers who shared a common bond - loving soccer in the US.  There were chants at high volume.  There was great love for the beautiful game.  There was some loud taunting when a disliked team shirt game in - but unlike overseas, here in the US below the ribbing is respect and brotherhood at knowing we are all part of a largely unpopular club - being a passionate soccer fan in the US.  After drinking and singing, my wife and friends met up and we went into Lucas Oil.  Us and nearly 42k other fans.  Let me save you haters the time - yes, an NFL pre-season game will get more fans. Perspective is everything.  We have no soccer history to speak of here in Indy.  We have no team (though one starts in 2014).  This was a pre-season friendly.  5 years ago this could not have happened.  10 years ago the idea could not even of been spoken.

It was a great mix of people as is common at most of these type games. 

Big time fans of one of the teams.  In this case, true chelsea fans were maybe 20% of the stands.

Big time soccer fans.  Probably 40% of the stands.  They just 

Dec 30, 2013

My best books of 2013

In order of reading, from January at the bottom to December at top.
17 books read in 2013.  Not nearly where I would like that number to be. I read over 50 a few years in the late ”00’s”.  The improvement of phones/tablets has been my biggest weakness that keeps me from picking up the Kindle.  
Hatching twitter by Bilton   Overall mediocre.  Interesting from a historical POV in regards to one of the most important internet services of all time.  The issue is simply the author continually sets things up to be much more explosive than they are.  And there is false foreshadowing (namely the impact of Dick’s first tweet that as far as i can tell was meaningless) which is poor form.  Not much to cover … a startup that grew at insane rate with standard infighting and backstabbing.  I still recommend it if you are a fan of twitter.
And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini.  His previous two are two of my favorites, but this was just okay.  It is another beautifully written tale that centers (mostly) around Afghanistan and the beauty of the country and its people contrasted with its flaws and cruelty.
This starts off with wonderful short tale that more or less sums up what the story will be. I think it is nice touch.  The actual story is one of heartbreak and hope and generally very well written in a way that makes you care about the people and want to read more.  But the story gets off track too much IMHO without adding to the book.  This is the fatal flaw.  Still worth the read, but a step down from past work
We are Water, Wally Lamb.  Tied for first of 2013 on my list.  Wally has written great books:  She’s Come Undone is very good.  This Much I Know is True is amazing, The Hour I First Believed is his best IMHO.  Wishing and Hoping is not worth reading though, so skip that.  Now to his latest - We Are Water is the most uncomfortable to read of his books, which all cover broken people, sadness, fear, etc.  But the subject matter in some of this is simply hard to read (child molestation).  Even with getting past that,  I could not put it down … my phone could not pull me away from the kindle when I was reading this book.  It got me to sit and read for hours on the weekend too.  He paints the most amazing pictures of broken people and redemption.  Chapters switch the author POV between main, and a few lessor, characters.  There are backstories that give reasons for character’s flaws, but not in a way to excuse them or make them sympathetic.  The overriding theme, to me, is how decisions and environments impact generations, which I believe.  
Night Film, Marisha Pessel.  Really enjoyed this.  Author does a masterful job of adding content from made up web pages, news stories, internet forums, etc.  Makes it feel very modern and real where most authors that try to do this fail (feels like someone who has never been on internet).  Story is based around a movie director who is a recluse to the point where eventually his horror movies are not even officially released and rather are part of an underground group of fans.  Anyhow, director’s daughter dies, reporter with history starts to dig deeper and the story takes off.  Lots of twists.  The Author is not afraid of using a lot of paper (or e-ink) and the first quarter of the book is too wordy (I nearly put the book down) with some overwrought descriptive language.  Not a “A” book, but a fair “B” that is a fun read.  
The Remaining Series, DJ Molles.  Mediocre series of 4 zombie books.  I read all 4 in a row as I partially enjoyed the book and I knew if I went back to read the others later I would need to re-read the first one to remember.  By the 4th one I was proper tired of the series.  But that is partially due to me reading them in a row and needing a break.  Basic idea is interesting … that the gov’t have a series of military folks that live a fairly normal day to day life but are occasionally sent to secret bunkers when something potentially bad might be happening in the world.  Normally they stay down for a few days and are told to come up.  This time they are not.  Zombie breakout.  They have access to supply caches around their state (there are 50 of them).  They are to restart the gov’t.  There will be a 5th book, which I will read to see it through.  Like most decent apocalyptic stories, the cruelty and evil of the living is the real story and the monsters are simply a catalyst.
Eleanor and Park, Rainbow Rowell.  Tied for best book of 2013.  I thought it there was no chance it would have competition for top spot, but a December Wally Lamb Book changed that.  Anyhow, this was the YA book that matched ‘The Fault in our Stars’ last year IMHO which is saying A LOT.  Basic idea is a first love book with an amazing open ended ending.  Two socially awkward kids that slowly let each other into their lives with the backdrop of her broken family situation.  No reason to put any more in this review - simply put that this is a must read and one of my favorites of all time.   If you skip things that get listed in YA in book lists, you are missing out on some potentially great books.  Not all YA books are worth a read as an adult of course, but there are amazing books that people will never give a chance … and this is one of them.  
Bright Lights, Big Ciy, Jay Mcinerney.  80’s classic that I just read.  Very short and easy to read.  Captures the excess world of the 80’s very well albeit without much of a true story or point that will stick with you.  I am okay with this being called a classic of the time.
Animal Farm, George Orwell.  True classic.  Had not read since High School and I realize how far it was over my head in overall theme..
Straight Flush, Ben Mezrich.  Ben’s books are modern pop culture … easy to read and popular with people who do not read many books.  Some are barely worth the read, some are great.  Sex on the Moon is my favorite by far.  Straight Flush started out with a lot of potential and quite honestly gets boring and lost my interest.  Story covers the rise and fall or online poker from the view of one specific service.  It just never seems to live up to the tension and excitement that is starts out with.  
Hells Angels, Hunter S Thompson.  Classic HST and true gonzo journalism.  But simply too damn long.  Story is his time embedded in the Hell’s Angels during their peak.  A classic of the time and genre.  
Paper Towns, John Green.  Not as good as TFIOS (his best and my best of 2012), but good.  Too similar to Looking for Alaska (see below) and it felt like it was a blur of characters.  But make no mistake - worth every minute and still a great book.  Another young love and coming of age book based in a generic town in Florida.  
No Easy Day, Mark Owen.  The written version of the movie “zero dark thrity”.  Book is from the Seal Team POV.  Great read to understand what happened.  
Looking for Alaska, John Green.  Very very good.  Story of a girl named Alaska and her coming of age and how her life impacts people around her.  Based around a summer camp.  A must read.
Gone Girl, Gillian Flynn.  My biggest disappointment of the year.  Starts off with amazing potential.  And ends in a steaming pile of poo.  It felt like the author simply gave up.  You can feel it happening as you read.  

Dec 3, 2013

Noblesville

Aug 27, 2013

"

I  can go to the barn and shovel

"

Heard walking by a weight watchers type meeting

Aug 23, 2013

Aug 1, 2013

A proper beer, a proper pub, a proper football town. http://instagram.com/p/ce4P_7mdQu/

A proper beer, a proper pub, a proper football town.

Jul 20, 2013