Looks like I'm not spending my tax return on you after all. Investigating a slow leak in my diminished tires led me to serendipitously discover one of my cv boots had finally split. I guess it had to happen, and I might as well take care of a few other things while I'm down there.
I can finally get some awesome tires to match the suspension. New wheel bearings might be a worthwhile investment. Re-re-re-replace the rotors and never utter the name Raybestos again. Maybe some steel brake lines. Suspension techniques sway bars? Chrome-plated exhaust manifold heat shield? We shall see, there's a spreadsheet in the works - so you know I mean business.
That said, I have a fever for a racing game. And the only prescription is a Gran Turismo or Forza. If there's one group that's as annoying as the trash talking SCEA and X360 brass, it's Polyphony. Extraordinary delays, repeated feature sets, and the greatest sin of all: almost charging for content on a re-release. They were the best, and then stopped trying. I believe the verb is 'to EA'.
History indicates the second Forza will follow the Halo series and be the same game with more polygons. It'd be nice to see some innovation, but that's just not going to happen with Microsoft so worried about taking risks with their franchise titles.
Still if the gameplay is solid I'll unshun Microsoft and pick up their system. The Forza car list has been released. Ultimately the quality of the list depends on how it's used. If you have no business buying 90% of the cars because the other 10% blow their class away, your huge list just became very short.
I'm of course saddened that rally hasn't yet been introduced into the series. But other than that I'm impressed. They have a great sampling from so many generations of motorsports. The multiplicity of a single model exists in having numerous race versions rather than the ten different consumermodels. The mid-90's lineup is strong, as are the LeMans GT series cars.
Most of all, I'm looking forward to playing with a wheel. It's been all dual shock for me until now. A precision analog wheel and pedal set should make the experience much more enjoyable.
Some highlights of the list...
2002 M3 GTR / 2006 Corvette C6R / 1964 250 GTO / 2003 Mugen S2000 / 1993 XJ-220 / 2005 Exige / 1998 FTO / 1997 GTO / 2002 Skyline Nur / 2007 Peugot 207 / 1995 911 GT2 / 1998 Tommy Kaira Impreza / 1969 2000GT / 1998 VeilSide Supra / 2001 Tuscan R / 2003 R32
Then Erik and I drove up to Forza to pick up a replacement oil cap. They were pretty awesome today; Forza and GP consistently bounce between impressing and disappointing me. We got to see a couple 1098s (shown). They're beautiful bikes. I could feel my wallet clutching the inside of my pocket.
Then we headed to 7th where the chop was pretty nasty. But Erik, KO, Jon, and Scotty came out so we paddled around and rode some ugliness.
PB after that, to catch up with Zac and company and play some whiffle ball. Santana's California burritos ensued. The PB waves were also windblown, but the furthest break was holding strong and not nearly as far out.
As spring becomes summer it will all about the clean breaks.
All parties involved became comatose at nineteen hundred and plans for karaoke were abandoned. But it was great not to see the inside of the office today.
Short story short, I incinerated some of my pants today whilst calmly drinking a latte. I did smell and see the smoke for the duration of my biscotti, but assumed it was coming from the nearby kitchen.
Jeans don't ignite, they smolder.
Headers are hot.
Nothing contradicts your sweet 'Cafe Racer 4 Real' tattoo more than being told your pants are on fire in a cafe.
I finally did it. I finally peeled off the piece of masking tape the painters left on the wall next to my office that has been my bane for almost a month. I would not have survived til Monday when I move to the adjacent hallway. Every day it mocked me with its disorder, its implications of unfinished work.
Lessons learned, lessons learned. One hitch fouled the shoot.
[-] I had no flashperson so I took the camera in one hand, the flash in the other, and paddled out on a boogie board. It wasn't a big day, but it wasn't a small day.
[-] A few waves in, I was pummeled such that something knocked the flash housing clasp. Water seeped in. The SB-800 still powers up, but I'm cleaning her off and holding my breath before I decide I do or don't need a replacement.
[-] The water was a bit cold. Not frigid, but cold enough to scare off most of the talent.
[+] The LEDs worked well - much better than the glowsticks for focusing (this can't be seen in any shots, but I got some great LED focus while the flash was malfunctioning).
[+] The camera and housing held up well. All of these shots were taken without the benefit of the SB-800. Nowhere near enough light, but not bad for a point and shoot flash.
[+] Scripps was a good choice, I could stand most places, it was waist-shoulder, consistent, and and some corners.
So I was at least able to put my previous learnings to the test, and they were all good choices. It would have been a great shoot had I not caught a personnel snag that had a serious ripple effect. I think that was a pun.
Thanks to Erik for being the unwaivering, enthusiastic subject.
Also KO and Ayr for making the trip out into the cold, dark darkness.
Flew out on United, landed at five local time. It's amazing how pleasant a flight can be with DS, an mp3 player, and copy of MC with twelve articles about the new Gizzixer. Mom, brother, and I ate at Coconuts. It wasn't bad, but a bit pricey/touristy.
We headed up the west shore to scout surf spots. We found the Kealia Beach shorebreak that ended up being the prime spot for the trip.
We wandered up the coast toward the spot and found Tamba Surf. Of the few boards they had to rent, I found a 6'-something Tuflite. With some red spray paint and a pin tail, my board could probably dress up as it for Halloween. Needless to say, it was a good find.
Kealia turned out to be pretty good, as I came back numerous times throughout the trip. It's a rough shorebreak. And the waves rebound off the steep beach to create some difficult shapes. Corners were hard to come by, but were most gratifying. Since the majority of the waves were very steep and quick, the rides and falls were anything but boring. My last session featured three or four large outside waves that cleaned everyone out. The kook:local ratio was approximately 1:1.
After Kealia we headed for the airport to pick Kris up and continued on to Poipu on the south shore. This reefy area features a small cove that was abuzz with snorkelers. The cove is sheltered by a finger of rock that catches all of the current. After paddling to the west side of the cove for a single right and a lot of waiting, I followed some locals to the reefbreak. It's a strong left, which is decidedly not my forte. When I eventually paddled off the break, I scraped some barely-submerged reef.
I at last busted out the 640 and housing for some underwater snaps and video. Great fun.
We headed up to the north shore to hike the Na Pali coast trail. The path runs along the cliffs a few hundred feet above the ocean and hosts some amazing views. Recent rain had left the surfaces muddy and treacherous so the going was very slow. Our destination was a beach only reachable by the trail. I use the term 'beach' loosely, as this shore was very rocky with no rideable break to speak of.
This brings me to the first of what will be several personal recommendations - basically darn good reasons to go back that you can mooch off of if you're like me.
Hike the entire Na Pali coast trail. It's long, it's treacherous, but it's awesome and completely untouched by the endless stream of vacationers.
Having explored the north, east, and south shores, we headed west toward Waimea Canyon. The mountain peaks at 3,600 feet and affords some excellent views of the island - provided your camera/eyes have a haze or red filter.
But the Waimea drive brings me to my second recommendation.
Rent a bike. There are rental places everywhere. Most of them do Harleys. Lame. But at a few places I saw sport bikes, tourers, and some dirt bikes. The paved road surfaces throughout the island are superb, the only hazards to street riding are rain and dirt runoff - neither of which sneak up on you. And there are countless dirt roads that would make for some excellent off-tarmac touring.
After seeing the Waimea sights we headed to Polihale State Park on the west shore. This included a five mile stretch of hard-packed dirt road teeming with rain-formed potholes. There were air dams and sideskirts strewn about, mom tried to make a contribution on the drive out. I took the wheel on the way back with Jon as co-driver and we had a blast - without bottoming out the car.
The beach is long, sandy, and deserted. There's a great view of the bluffs to the north and Nihau Island. The park allows drive-in camping, which is number three on the list of things to do.
Camp at Polihale.
One of the locals told me his surf spot was the north end of the beach - though it catches the full force of the wind coming from the northwest.
More to come...