Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The thrill of victory and the agony of defeat

We've all seen it. Years ago for anyone anywhere close to my age, we all saw the agony of defeat every Saturday afternoon as the opening of the Wide World of Sports.  Gruesome, but, like a good train wreck, hard to turn away from.  That may be why I so look forward each year to the Norge Ski Jump held here in the area.  110th year of the event.  In Olympic years it plays a big part in determining which jumpers that go. Jump events are held year round there.  In summer, they put plastic pellets down that mimic the characteristics of snow.  In winter it is, of course, snow, either manmade or natural. 
This year seemed like a perfect weekend for the event with enough natural snow down on the ground and temps hovering around 30 degrees.  They had the usual participants from around the world and the United States.  Saturday is the junior division with jumpers as young as 7 and 8 and Sunday is for the big boys.  Due to finishing late Saturday, they had the award ceremony first thing on Sunday right after the parade of nations and states.

Skiers all hike the 760 stairs to the top of the jump for each of their jumps.  Yeah, that's why I'm not a ski jumper.  Put an elevator in, I'm in, too.
Time to jump
Get ready.
Get set.
Stick the landing.
Or not!
Don't worry.  He ended up walking off the hill.  But, it was a nasty wipeout that opened the eyes of the officials.  Unfortunately, this was not the best day for jumping.  We didn't feel it on the ground, but I guess the winds up top were wicked.  Therefore, the rest of the day moved at a slow crawl with the officials measuring the wind and trying to send guys off in between gusts.  Crazy.  So, I only got to see about 5 more jumps in the next hour and a half.  And all the rest of the jumpers landed safely.
But, I did get to see alot of people with dead animals on their heads and honoring the European traditional garb.
All in all, a fun day.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Introducing "The Destroyer"

Yep, that is his name.  Today was the start of league play for my son for basketball. As he came out of the tunnel, each kid's name was announced.  And he was, to our surprise, called out as Derek "The Destroyer" Zelazoski.  Even more surprisingly, our last name was pronounced properly. Unfortunately, league play started with a loss, but it was a good game (the other team had a ringer or two), and Derek played well and had fun.  The best part is we like the team, we like the coach, and we like the league.  Not often you can say that in the childrens sports environment these days.  Its going to be a good season. A few shots of "The Destroyer" in action.


Friday, January 23, 2015

Going to the chapel...

As many of you know, I made my way to Arizona in September to visit a friend and goof around with my camera in a different environment.  Little did I know it was to be a pilgrimage as well.  One of the areas we explored was Sedona.  And, as well as being a beautiful place with all its red rock, it evidently can lead to a religious experience.  We found this cool historic church built into the existing landscape.  It is the Church of the Holy Cross.  Built in 1956.  It was a pretty neat place overlooking Sedona and its terrain.