Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Still Alive

Hello there!!!

Yes, I am still alive and doing well, thank you. It has been damn near a year since my last post. Why you might ask? Well, this time last year I was hard at work on my thesis. As per usual, I tried to put it off as long as possible only to lead myself into a road block. But with the help of a good mate of mine (Hi George) I got through it. Finished it up and school for that matter. In February of this year I reserved my degree in Business Administration.

What since then? Loads of job applications. In the last 6 months I have submitted over 130 applications and CVs. The most I get back is "thanks but no thanks". Which is better than nothing at all coming back and just wondering if that is a good thing or a bad thing. I knew when I started looking for work that it would be difficult. I do not speak the local language worth a shit, so that puts me behind the 8 ball right away. I will just keep on submitting apps until one day I get that call. Hell, I would settle for an interview at this point. Until then, it is me sitting behind my computer scouring for anything I am remotely qualified for.

"Sure you are looking for work but what about the important stuff, fishing", I hear you say. Not a whole lot to speak of there. I caught a few small pike in late spring but that has been about it. The weather go hot here (hot for Finland) and the lake heated up. At one point the thermometer on the dock read 26C! When the water does that, the pike go deep and don't bother hitting lures. Needless to say I couldn't find them. But I did take the little out this past weekend and we did have some fun. We were using ice fishing gear of the boat. I have a tournament
next month and it is ice fishing gear out of the boat so I figured I would get some practice in.Stinni got this little of a little ice jig. She didn't know what to do at first as it was pulling pretty hard. At one point she said "I think I caught a rock". But she did well. Pulled in up on 1 kilo line on an ice road. She also landed a few perch. Anytime I get to fish with my kids, is a damn fine day and I wouldn't trade it for the world.

Anywho, it's back to the application and CV submitting. Other than that, the football season is going well and I made the Helsinki Harps Gaelic football team. Big tournament here in Helsinki on Saturday so it should be a good craic.

Peace and Chicken grease

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Where did the summer go?

Hi all

It has been quite awhile since I have typed anything for this blog. My summer has been busy. Fishing has hit the back burner and damn near fell off the range entirely. I haven't worked on a lure in ages either.
So what have I been spending my time on you ask.
Work (i.e. mandatory work placement for school)
Football (season is just wrapping up, PLAYOFFS BABY!!!!)
Family (yes in this order)
and now back to school

I had to complete 10 weeks of work placement, the nice part is I found my own placement and got to work with some good people. The time actually went quickly. Finished the report this past week and got my credits.
Football has been going well too. Personally I think I have only had one solid performance this year for my division 6 team. I finished the season with a .73 goals against average, I'm happy with that. Right now we are gearing up for the promotion playoffs (starts tonight, only have to play 2 matches). Looking forward to it. My hobby league team finished top of the group and are in the cup playoffs. We won last night and are now on to the semis. Our next match is against the team that has the one the whole thing a couple time and beat us up in the semis last year. Time for some payback.
The family is doing well. Kids are getting big and still love to fish with bobber and worm. When we did get to hang out at the country place, I found myself doing more swimming with the kids than fishing. The missus is done with the amount of football I have been playing. That means not much futsal this winter, maybe I will have time to work on some lures.
School started back up a few weeks ago. I have 3 course to finish and my thesis and I am done. The only courses that concern me are the languages. I am monolingual and not ashamed of it. However, requirements dictate that I take and pass two languages. I really shouldn't have put this off till the end. Nothing like pouring on the pressure.

I did start fishing in my local lakes tournaments. There are 6 tournaments throughout the year, I managed to make it to 5 of them. Every time it is different, the first was old school bobber and worm, the next was free choice, the next was trolling, but no motor only rowing (damn was I tired after that) the next was casting only and the final was ice fishing from a boat. Had to use ice fishing gear.

I finished the season in 4th. Not to bad. I blew the casting tournament and was to stubborn to change my plan of attach. If I got some fish in the boat, I might have been able to move up to 2nd. But I had a good time fishing with the old boys and am looking forward to next year's season.

Other than all that, life is good, can't complain. Here are a few pics from the summer.

 Fried Pike, so tasty

 My boy doing what he does best, eating sticks

 The old man Gretzky and the pup

 The pup is not a fan of the boat

 The eldest burying her sister

 A beautiful site

Flower picking

Peace and chicken grease

Monday, March 11, 2013


Howdy folks.

Shit we are a couple weeks into March and I haven't made a post this year. My bad. I guess that is because I don't have much to talk about really. School is school., meaning fucking rubbish. Kids and wife are great and so is our quickly growing puppy. The little shit is already up to 19 kilos, just over 6 months old.

I could go into a rant about the lack of coherent English from my teacher, who is also my thesis advisor, but for once I don't feel like raising my blood pressure.

Since the new year I am happy that I frequent the gym. I go three times a week and am on a weight lifting program. It is going well but I will fill in the blanks later, if the program works. If it doesn't than I will call it out by name and explain why it sucked. So fingers crossed.

Football is just around the corner. We have friendlies lined up for April and we are playing on ASTRO this year for our home games!!!! That fucking rocks, my knees and hips will greatly appreciate that. So ready to play ball.

I could have a internship coming up/. We will find out of Wednesday. Hopefully that pans out.

Other than that, I don't have shit to say. Haven't picked up a lure to work on in some time. But I do have plans for some spinner baits and umbrella rigs. In the next couple of months I will start working on those. I am still making beer. Still using kits. The wife said, "Hell no" to me upping my game and going partial/full mash. Turns out she thinks are place is to small to house all the gear, and I need a job. Can't argue with her, she is right.

I promise the next post will actually be better than this dribble.

Peace and chicken grease.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Me read good

So I completely blew my vow to write at least once a month. I completely skipped November and damn near December. To be honest I haven't had much to write about. I haven't been working on any lures, at all. I am still making beer regularly (mmmmmmmmmmmmm beeeeeeeeerrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr). School work and kids are taking up my time. The kids I like, the fill in the blank. 

When I do have some downtime, I try to fill it with learning, but not school enforced learning. I read. Let's get this out of the way right now, Listening to an audio book is reading. I don't want to here the bullshit that it is not. If listening to a book isn't reading than nor is feeling a book, in the case of the blind using brail. Now that we got that out of the way......

I am very proud of myself to digesting theses. I never was much of a reader. Hell I probably went years in-between reading a book. With my growing interest in science based reading materials and some friends that gave some great recommendations, I got into it. The audio format I think was the key. I take the bus to and from school, that makes about 1 hour or more of do nothing time. I get car sick if I try to read or play a game on my phone, so audio books are perfect. Plus when I was running daily, I typically would listen to a book. I also listen when driving alone, grocery shopping, washing dishes, cooking, pretty much when ever someone isn't talking to me or when I am in the shower. 

Here are the books I have read in the past couple of years. Some I really enjoyed and some were a bit of a slog. Regardless I would recommend them all. These aren't in any order, just as I remembered them or looked them up in i-tunes. The Hyperion series was my first real dive in to Sci-Fi and I really enjoyed them, tip of the cap to AJ for that. Never thought I would be a sci-fi reader, but hell, shit happens. There are plenty of science based stuff on there and some biographies. The Shackleton story is utterly amazing. 

A life too short: The tragedy of Robert Enke. Ronald Reng
Th Black hole war. Leonard Susskind
13 things that don't make sense. Michael Brooks
Quantum: Einstein, Bohr and  the great debate about the nature of reality. Manjit kumar
The Hidden Reality. Brian Greene
Hyperion, The fall of Hyperion, Endymion, The rise of Endymion. Dan Simmons
Food politics. Marion Nestle
Horizons of Cosmology: Exploring worlds seen and unseen. Joseph Silk
Medium raw, Kitchen confidential. Anthony Bourdain
Hitch-22:a memoir. Christopher Hitchens
Orphans of the Sky. Robert Heinlein
Red Mars, Green Mars, Blue Mars. Kim Stanley Robinson
Ring world. Larry Niven
Quantum Man: Richard Feynman's life in science. Lawrence Krauss
A universe from nothing: Why there is something rather than nothing. Lawrence Krauss
Wizard, Tesla biography. Marc Seifer
A brief History of Time. Stephen Hawking
The God delusion. Richard Dawkins
Death by black hole and other cosmic quandaries. Neil deGrasse Tyson
Just play ball. Joe Garagiola
Tony la Russa, man on a mission. Rob Rains
The Quantum world. Kenneth Ford
Thinking outside the box. Brad Friedel
How to Brew. John Palmer
South: The story of Shackleton's 1914-1917 expedition. Ernest H Shackleton

So if you want to read some books, have a look at the above. 
I have three more books queued up to read; Abundance, The Rational Optimist and The better angels of our nature. 
I will let you know how those go. All recommendations by Brian Brushwood. If you don't know who he is, google him, He does Scam School, NSFW show <>, Weird things, and a million other projects. 

I hope you all enjoy your holidays and wish you a successful and a kick ass 2013.

For me, it is family time, and I guess I will get around to working on my thesis. 

Peace and Chicken Grease

Friday, November 2, 2012

Opps I lost a month

Well I fucked that up. I managed to piss through October with zero posts. I knew the idea of writing a new post at least once a month was never going to work. Oh well, what ya going to do.
Not too much going on. School blows, mindless dribble dotted with barely edible lunches punctuated with mad scrambles to get a report done, because although you had 4 weeks to do it, you really couldn’t be bothered.
Beer production is working itself into a nice pipeline. May I never run out of beer! I am really happy with a beer I made from a kit then dry hopped with some Fuggles. I changed the yeast from what ever shit it came with to a SAFALE US-05, even though the beer I was brewing was a lager. Really, really pleased with it.
Politics is a hot topic right now, and to be honest, I couldn’t be less bothered. US politics I am finding harder and harder to side for anyone. To me they all sound like a bunch of idiots. Republicans with their anti-science rhetoric and Democrats, well just being democrats and too much liberalism for my taste. I no longer side with one side. I am no longer that Right wing Republican, and by no stretch do I lie on the other side. I am a hodgepodge of ideas. Socialism is good to a point, but yeah Capitalism. Everyone has a right to a firearm in return everyone has a right to health care. Government should be small but caring. Wow doesn’t that sound like a load of shit. It is what it is and that is me. Fuck em if they can’t take a joke.
Otherwise life is good, kids are good and the wife is good. My big brother tied the knot a few weeks back so that is kick ass, just wish I could have made it back. Still have yet to meet my new sister-in-law. Hell she is younger than my little brother and she married my older brother. Way to go Bro.

The kids and I had a good time keeping up with our American traditions and carved up a pumpkin for Halloween. I make them do the dirty work. Unfortunately for Caroline she was helped off the top of the slide the quick way and landed on her face, I told that it is perfect and she can go as a zombie, she didn’t find that as funny as I did.

Peace and Chicken Grease 

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Down to the wire

I vowed to write a post once a month. So here it is.

I haven't been fishing all month and haven't made a lure. I know I am a slacker. Life always gets in the way fishing. I have thought about it and have ideas in my head but haven't transferred those to wood.

School is in full swing and I am back to writing meaningless reports. I swear that if this is all these kids are going to learn in school, they will be screwed when it comes to working in the real world. I have plenty of management experience. I have hired and fired my fair share of people. I have looked at budget numbers till I went cross-eyed and thought about the abuse I was going to catch from my boss's boss when he sees the 150K worth of right offs I have coming in the next quarter. I learned all this by doing, usually the hard way. My school was the old cliche, "school of hard Knox" or the school of "pull yourself up by the boot straps". I realize now how valuable all these experiences are. How you can't learn this stuff from a book. I want to pass this on to my classmates but I don't want to sound smug  or pretentious. So to be honest I don't know how to tell them that the theory we just covered in class is worth dick in real life. Sounds great on paper but in the real world......... I don't know. At the same time my professional experiance is limited to a specific field and company. So maybe I don't have the as much knowledge as I think I do.
Holly shit I am rambling again. Oh well its my blog I can do it if I want.

Back to hobby related stuff. I have beer! I bottled a few cases yesterday and have another 20 liters to bottle very soon. I am telling you folks, making your own beer is where its at.
Outdoor football is over for the year. My division 6 team finished 3rd in our group and just missed out on the promotion playoffs. I good season for me, I conceded just 13 goals in 15 games. My best goals against average in the 4 years of playing division football. My hobby league team finished 1st in our group, only conceding 10 goals in 13 game. We did not do well in the championship playoffs. We won our first playoff match handily but the next two were no bueno. We lost our next 4-0, went into to halftime 0-0. Their first goal came from their completely unmarked un-pressured striker who curled one into the top corner. I got a finger tip to it but could not change its course. Probably the biggest save I tried to make all season. I had time to think about how much it is going to hurt when I hit the ground, I was in the air for awhile. The second goal was a penalty, my penalty record was horrible this year. Didn't save a one. The third goal was completely my fault and the fourth was a wonder goal. The next match for the bronze I had a howler. Nothing I did was right. Worst game of the year for me. Hurts to finish the season with such a piss poor performance. We finished 4th out of 45 teams, so I guess not that bad in the long run.

Shit, more rambling.

Anyway folks, hope all is well in your worlds.

Peace and Chicken grease

Monday, August 13, 2012

Loss of focus

This year I haven't spent the amount of time on the water that I would have liked. With school starting back up soon I don't think I will be fishing much, maybe the odd weekend here and there. I will defiantly try to hit the hard water this winter to make up for my lack of fishing on open water.  This year I really haven't caught much. I don't know if it's me, my presentation, my lures, the fish or the weather but I am boating nothing.

Coming on to the title of this entry. I got out on the water this past Sunday. The weather was cool and the sun was out. A great time to fish. I went out the night before with no luck so I switched up one of the lures I was pulling (trolling as usual). I was running a spoon on one rod and my go to lure, the Storm shallow Thunder 15 on the other. Was cruising north with the trolling motor on 3, in pretty flat water. I was in about 2-3 meters of water when the rod with the ST15 bent back. I dropped the spoon rod I was holding, killed the motor and picked up the other rod from the rod holder. I gave a quick set, which I know I probably don't have to do but it's a habit at this point and started to crank. At first it felt like a dead weight like I hooked a log, then it shook its head and I knew this was a good fish. I pumped a bit and was bringing him in, his pull the other way would yield me no line gain as he was big enough to pull a bit of drag. Let it be known, when I fish for pike I don't pussy foot around with light line. I typically troll with 20 to 30 kilo breaking strength line with 25 kilo wire leaders. I don't fuck around with light line or shit knots. Okay back to the fight. I am getting pretty excited at this point; one reason why is it feels like I haven't caught a fish in ages and two, I am entered in an online fishing tournament and this weeks fish is pike. The fish is about 5 yard from the boat, he is a good sized fish, has to be 4 kilos plus, I give a couple more cranks then bring the rod tip up. I turn to my left to move the rod with spoon on it to the rod holder so when I stand up I don't end up stepping on it. At this same time the fish shakes his head, at least I assume that he did as I wasn't looking at him, and low and behold he comes unbuttoned. I stare into the water in disbelief, what the hell, what the fuck just happened? Where is that big fish that was just fighting with me? Why is it not attached to the end of my line anymore? Tell me this isn't happening? At this point I start screaming a line of expletives that would make a sailor or truck driver blush in embarrassment. I am sure that most of the lake heard me, I didn't see anyone on the opposing shore but I am sure if anyway one was outside they heard the very loud American cursing anything and everything that I could think of. Might have even managed a Finnish curse word or two. At this same time I start to go Johnny Mac on my gear, throwing my rod down kicking the landing net, picking the rod back up and whipping it at the water, just going nuts in general. I manage to gain a bit of composure and stop beating my gear. Knowing, I can't afford to replace it. I sit for a few moments thinking of all the things I did wrong. I should have done this or that. I do this to myself a lot. I am a goalkeeper and every time a play happens and I am scored on or almost scored on I analyze it till there is nothing left and beat myself up about it for the next week, and more than not get bruised knuckles from taking it out on the post. Anyway, I check over my gear and make sure everything is good to go and put my lures back in the water and continue my fishing. Cursing and shaking my head for the next hour of fishing, without a bite.

That was it for my fishing this weekend. One good fish lost to poor focus and bad organization. It makes be think back to the military 7 P's; Prior Proper Planning, Prevent Piss Poor Performance.

There is always next time. Hopefully that time comes soon.

Peace and Chicken Grease.