Rick's Ramblings

You have found Rick's Ramblings, a Web Log.

I have been writing in this space for a few years now. Visit the archives to get a feel for my style.

Thanks for visiting one of my creative outlets! Please send me an e-mail, or add a comment to any post.

More Rick Umali web sites at:

Yahoo! Geocities
Lycos Tripod
The World
My Own Domain

Email: rickumali@gmail.com

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Saturday, December 11, 2004
There is now an ice skating rink in the Eiffel Tower. That's right, in the Eiffel Tower itself. Patinez au Premiér Etage de la Tour Eiffel! The rink is nearly 200 feet in the air, and the sensation of flying must be quite acute!

Unlike golf, where the course is often a beautiful destination, ice skating rinks are largely utilitarian and indoors. There's a lot of hardware needed to keep a sheet of ice hard smooth. For pure destination ice skating, you must go outdoors.

I've been lucky. When I first moved to Boston, I lived near the Public Garden, a gorgeous walking garden that features a quiet pond with swans and swan boats. During my first cold winter in Boston, I found that the pond froze into a perfect patch of ice. In the late evening hours, I would skate around the darkened pond, careful to avoid thin ice, thrilling to how open the space was. It was glorious.

I haven't had that kind of raw ice skating experience since. When Jenn and I visited Rockefeller Center in New York City, I told her we'd have to ice skate there, but we never have.

Maybe the news of the Eiffel Tower hits me because I first experienced ice skating at an outdoor rink. Jersey City. Palisades Avenue. (I think it was called Fisk Park.) I had borrowed ice skates. I somehow knew that I was taking the very first steps in a long ice skating love affair.

Sunday, December 05, 2004
My wife was surprised when my holiday gift list didn't include any kind of electronic gadget.

Honestly, I can't think of anything I might want, much less need. Last year, I asked for and received a Tungsten E, but I have rarely used it (I have most of my data in an old Handspring Visor). I kept resolving to migrate my data over to this sleeker, more powerful PDA, but I haven't done it yet. Maybe next year I'll do it.

My shelves have plenty of items that I have bought, but never used. I don't like the idea of adding to this pile.

A lot of the cool stuff that I want really require a new computer (I run an ancient 530Mhz Windows 98 box). Because of this, I can't use an iPod, nor can I really get a digital video camera. I need beefier hardware.

So what do I want this holiday season? Same thing that I want every year: books and DVDs. And socks are always a great gift.