Studio711

Black Friday

I don’t go much for Black Friday sales, but there was a time that I tried to survive the mob and I realized that story hasn’t appeared on this site before…

I believe it was my junior year of college (Nov 2000) when I decided I wanted to buy a sound system, DVD player and TV for our dorm room. All of it was pretty entry level stuff but it was going to be a major upgrade! I went shopping at Best Buy and figured out what I wanted. The sales guy hinted that there were going to be some big sales on Black Friday so I decided I’d wait and save some money.

Dad kindly waited with me that morning. I don’t remember the specifics but I think we got there around 5am and it was below 20 degrees. We were about 10th or so in line and we waited for hours for the store to open. As the doors open, everyone mobbed the doors and pushed their way in so we probably weren’t the 10th people to get in. Dad and I had a plan so we went directly for the stuff we wanted, grabbed it and reconvened. That maybe took 60 seconds, but the store was already completely full. It took forever (half an hour?) to make it back to the cash registers.

As the cashier rang up my total, I happily said, “How much did I save?” … “Save? Nothing. None of this was on sale.”

Yep, we waited in the freezing cold for hours to save… nothing. The TV and DVD player are long gone, but that sound system has traveled all over the country with me and is currently in our theater room (complete with birdseed and a mouse carcass inside the subwoofer but that’s a story for another day.) I think about that Black Friday regularly when I flip on the sound system. Thank you, Dad, for suffering through that with me and not giving me grief.

Fantasy Football – Week 10

The Seahawks are now 4-5 and are looking like they have a pretty good chance of hitting my 8-8 prediction. That might even be a stretch. If they can beat the Packers after this short week then that will be a big help because you hope they can beat the 49ers twice and the Cardinals. They kept this last game interesting but the magic isn’t there. I loved seeing Russell running more. I wonder where that’s been all season?

Our league was kuh-razy. It was the most total points for our league this season and there were two huge upsets as Luke took down Tyler and Nick squeezed out a high-scoring win over Andy. Those games were crazy too as Luke’s Monday night player scored just enough to beat Tyler before leaving the game early and Nick was one fumble away from losing his game on Monday night too.

Everyone has over 1000 points for the season now but there’s a pretty big separation between positions 1-4 and 5-8. The playoffs are far from a lock though. Andy and Logan should be feeling pretty good about their chances but there are still 4 games left before we start our playoffs and crazier things have happened. Next week’s key matchup is Andy vs Tyler in a battle of #2 and #3.

After putting up 350 points in two weeks, Logan is obviously on top of the power rankings:

1. Logan (Goat Roapers) +2
2. Ben (Kool Aid Kid)
3. Andy (RAAAWWWRRRRR!!!) +1
4. Tyler (Krazy Kanuck) -3

On to the weekly records:

This Week This Season All Time
Highest Team Score Logan had 177.67 Tyler had 191.89 (Week 8) Tim 200.51 (2015)
Lowest Team Score Tim had 72.47 Was: Luke had 81.52 (Week 9) Andy had 41.29 (2015)
Biggest Blowout Dad beat Tim by 57.92 Tyler beat Dad by 90.22 (Week 8) Luke beat Andy by 113.02 (2010)
Closest Win Nick beat Andy by 2.21. Tyler beat Ben by 1.55 (Week 6) Jim beat Ben by 0.12 (2012)
Highest Scoring Player Ben Roethlisberger had 45.82 on Ben’s bench Mitchell Trubisky had 55.46 as a free agent (Week 4) Drew Brees had 60.54 on Tim’s bench (2015)
Longest Active Winning Streak Nick has a 3 game winning streak Andy, Logan and Tyler had 5 game winning streaks. Micah (2011) and Ben (2015) had 8 game winning streaks
Longest Active Losing Streak Tim has a 3 game losing streak. Dad has a 5 game losing streak. (Week 9) Kyle had a 14 game losing streak (2011)

R2-E2

Elijah has been watching reviews of Lego Star Wars sets and decided he wanted to be “R2-E2” for Halloween. He came up with that all on his own! Instead of buying a costume, I decided to make one with him.

We bought some cardboard boxes from Home Depot. They sell some heavy duty boxes which thought would work well for the body to keep it from falling apart so quickly. We kind of made it up as we went and eventually we ended up with a body that had arm holes and a head hole. I fashioned a box for the front to hold his candy and also gave him a head. We covered the whole thing with a metallic silver spray paint.

Then came the fun part! I bought some inexpensive electroluminescent wire and an Adafruit Audio FX Sound Board. I wired the sound board up to some arcade buttons and placed those on the front of his costume. He ended up with 6 buttons that he could press to make various sounds. For a speaker, we used a battery powered bluetooth speaker that we already had (it also had a line-in) and I powered the circuit board with a USB battery pack.

The end result was a fun looking costume that lit up and made sounds. It was a quite a hit and he loved showing it off. That excitement was tempered a bit by the fact that it was hard to walk up and down steps and a couple times he got overwhelmed by kids mobbing him trying to push the buttons. All in all, I’d call it a win but he said he wanted to have a simpler costume next year.

Fantasy Football – Week 9

The Seahawks game sure ended dramatically but they were lucky it was even that close. Dropped touchdown passes, multiple missed throws by Wilson, numerous penalties, and a pick six interception put them in a big hole that they couldn’t dig out of. Next week isn’t going to be any easier as they face the seemingly unstoppable Rams who usually give the Seahawks trouble even when the roles were reversed.

In our league, Logan finally put a decisive end to Tyler’s winning streak. But menwhile, Andy has quietly been getting his own five game winning streak going and he’s alone out front. Nick is the next one to get a crack at taking him down. Tim and Nick both had 0’s in their roster but it looks like most of them were late scratches. Nick ended up winning that one with a great last minute defense signing.

The power rankings are relatively stable this week.

1. Tyler (Krazy Kanuck)
2. Ben (Kool Aid Kid)
3. Logan (Goat Roapers) +1
4. Andy (RAAAWWWRRRRR!!!) -1

On to the weekly records:

This Week This Season All Time
Highest Team Score Logan had 173.11 Tyler had 191.89 (Week 8) Tim 200.51 (2015)
Lowest Team Score Luke had 81.52 Nick had 86.99 (Week 6) Andy had 41.29 (2015)
Biggest Blowout Ben beat Dad by 50.59 Tyler beat Dad by 90.22 (Week 8) Luke beat Andy by 113.02 (2010)
Closest Win Nick beat Tim by 4.58 Tyler beat Ben by 1.55 (Week 6) Jim beat Ben by 0.12 (2012)
Highest Scoring Player Drew Brees had 39.44 for Logan. Mitchell Trubisky had 55.46 as a free agent (Week 4) Drew Brees had 60.54 on Tim’s bench (2015)
Longest Active Winning Streak Andy has a 5 game winning streak Was: Logan and Tyler had 5 game winning streaks. Micah (2011) and Ben (2015) had 8 game winning streaks
Longest Active Losing Streak Dad has a 5 game losing streak. Was: Dad, Nick and Luke had 4 game losing streaks Kyle had a 14 game losing streak (2011)

Name Puzzle

Tim and Chelsea’s daughter had her first birthday and Tyla had the idea of a wooden name puzzle. I decided to give it a shot. I found a font that I liked, printed out her name and then used spray glue to stick it to a piece of pine. That was cut out on the bandsaw and sanded. For the paint, I went with a spray enamel which I hadn’t used before. It worked well but the weather was cool and rainy so it was hard to get the coats to pile up. In the end I left it with the top looking great and the other sides looking passable. For the bottom, I grabbed a scrap of sapele and routered out space around the letters. It might be a bit too challenging of a gift for her to do at this point but it was fun to make and she seemed to enjoy moving the pieces around.