Thursday, July 29, 2004

VIM Color Schemes

I really can't think of many people I know who still use vi(m) as a text editor, but for those that do, here are some great...

Color Schemes

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Mark Twain: The Awful German Language

It's an accurate and *very* funny 124 year-old appendix to his book "A Tramp Abroad". If you are German, or have ever tried to learn that language, check out either:
  The German translation: 
  Mark Twain: Die schreckliche deutsche Sprache

  ...or the English original: 
  Mark Twain: The Awful German Language (HTML) or (Text)

Friday, July 16, 2004

Let Freedom Reign!

A great montage of photos taken the day Iraq became sovereign, two days ahead of schedule. Here's the note that was handed to President Bush:

note handed to President Bush

Monday, July 12, 2004

You'd Never Guess This Actually Exists...

The Brezelfest ("Pretzel Fest") in Speyer is the biggest Volksfest in the Oberrhein ("Upper Rhein") area. On Sunday, we took the kids and met up with Ray, a buddy from work, and his daughter, Rachel.

Since we were already knee-deep into bratwurst and bier when we heard the gun for the start of the Speyer Stra├čenlauf ("marathon"), we decided to settle for looking around and letting the kids enjoy the rides. Many people actually have a life-long goal of running a marathon. Mine is less ambitious. I'd like to watch one - someday...

Check out the pictures!

My Million Dollar Wishlist

I know I should be working on *making* a million bucks instead of *spending* it, but this would be the toy I'd buy after winning the lottery (or some other more-likely scenario) and taking care of my family...

Spending $80 million on the large sub it just crazy. :) I'd take the 36-meter version and be happy with well-enough.

Friday, July 09, 2004

Family-Style Pub Crawl

What a nice, long weekend! Our Saturday kind of went like this:

  • Picked up tired Viktor early (10 AM) in the morning and left Mannheim heading towards Wiesbaden (where I was stationed for three years from 1994-97).

  • Meshell hit the Marktplatz (kind of a farmer's market) in Wiesbaden and dropped us off at the Rathaus ("city hall") where we used to hang out.

    Note: They call this tradition Fruehschoppen (literally translated "early shopping") and it normally happens on Saturday mornings or on Vatertag (Father's Day). Distinguished gentlemen, such as my self, meet at a local pub for a beer or two, some traditional grub and a nice sense of gemutlichkeit (roughly translates to a warm, easy, friendly environment). American's could learn alot from the social and mental benefits from the occasional beer-related event, like this...

    This place used to be a nice brewpub, but now it's an Andechser restaurant / biergarten. [pictures] Normally this wouldn't bother me since Andech's is one of my top 3 breweries in the world and making several of my favorite beers in the respective styles. But in this instance, I was disappointed. The character that the old Ratsbrauerie had, with its dark walls, old wood and cave-like ceilings had been replaced with a well-lit dining area with new furniture, white and yellow paint and poor service. Forunately, the beer on tap redeems this place, barely.

  • We met up and went across the river, to Mainz, in search of a brauhaus we used to like to hang out at - even before we had kids. It took Meshell about five minutes (and no wrong turns) to find it, the Eisgrub Brauhaus. After a great lunch, tired Viktor was beat (and stuffed - after a plate with two big pieces of schnitzel). [pictures]

  • Meshell had one more stop to make - at the American Army base in Mainz-Kastel to pick up some bicycle gear for Lindsey's bike. This base is right around the corner from *another* old favorite hangout of ours, the Castel Brauhaus. I couldn't resist, so I took some of the kids to the biergarten and had a couple of biers. [pictures] Viktor rested his eyes in the car...

    This was the first time I've been to three (or even two) brew pubs in a single day and I don't know if I'll do it again. I was overwhelmed by the good (and fresh) beer. I didn't think that was possible!
  • Wheat For Bread, Confiscated For Expensive Beer

    Found a great write-up about the history of Weizen (Wheat) Beer. It's definitely the right time of year for this great style of beer, in Germany and any where else warm weather and good beer are found.

    Here's an excerpt - that surpised me - about Reinheitsgebot (the Beer Purity Law):

    In the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, Weizenbier was a privilege of the nobility. The Reinheitsgebot of 1516 was not a control relating to purity of beer for the masses, but rather a mandate to protect this "refined" style of beer for the nobility in Bavaria. No private brewer was allowed to brew beer with wheat, be it in the towns or in the country, even for home consumption, - only the nobility.
    Enjoy the article and enjoy a Weizen!

    Thursday, July 01, 2004

    Geek Post: Drop-Down Menus, Horizontal Style

    Found a great article about Drop-Down Menus, Horizontal Style from A List Apart.

    Specifically, it deals with creating a drop-down navigation menu that only requires a browser with CSS support (normally). Currently there's a bug in IE 6.x that prevents it working properly without a small JavaScript . But otherwise, this is a finely-crafted piece of work. Check out an example of his, if you're interested in this sort of thing. I definitely am. I just wish I had more time to spend on web sites - when not at work...