Sunday, March 30, 2014

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: March 31st

Never underestimate the power of barbecue!

You wouldn't believe it... my sister and I wanted to meet for dinner last night, given that my other sister posted on facebook about how she and the rest of our family (my parents, my niece, and my other sister) went out to lunch.  So I told my sister "oh yeah?  Why don't we meet for dinner?"

She was down with it, so we determined a time and meeting location on a Saturday night.  The funny thing was, I had a swim meet the next day.  A dubious decision, surely, to have a big dinner the night before a home swim meet with Masters.   Even so, I met my sister at our restaurant of choice, the Northridge Wood Ranch Barbecue restaurant in the Northridge Fashion Center Mall.  She met me there with her boyfriend.  What a meal it was!   We shared a 4 item combo plate:  two half chickens (you can use "chicken" as two of the meats), tri tip and beef ribs.  Fantastic!

I told my sister about the meet the next day and I laughed about how this might slow me down, but cotdamn, the next morning I just destroyed it at the swim meet, with very low expectations.  I did a 50 backstroke, broke my personal record for that, which I set in Early March at Caltech, setting a new personal best of 45.12 seconds.  Then I did the 50 fly, and did *not* break my March personal best of 42.71, but I still swam a very good 44.37 seconds.

The last two were incredible.  I felt like I was too tired out from warmup for the 50 fly, so for 50 free, I decided not to warm up at *all*.   If you can believe this, it worked brilliantly!   For the 50 free, I swam an all time best 36.09 seconds... I was this close to breaking 36 seconds.  My goodness!!  Lastly for the 100 freestyle, an event I *did* warm up for, I went 1:26.33.  Whoah baby...  Incredible swimming.  There was really no precedent set for the 100 freestyle other than a 100 freestyle in meters I did in the fall, and based on what I'd done up to today I really just wanted to do better than 1:45... breaking 90 seconds was phenomenal.  Could not believe I could swim that fast!  The bottom line is, eat barbecue the night before a swim meet.  Ah??   Am I right?

So, in all, life is good.   I got to enjoy a day in Santa Monica on Friday, where instead of trudging through traffic trying to find another tourist spot, I went to one right next to me.  The weather was perfect, I got to just stand there and watch the waves of the ocean and the sand of the beach for nearly a half hour, followed by walking around town.  It was sublime.

Yesterday, after the meet, I tried to make my own porterhouse steak but with mixed results.  The inner part of the steak was done just right... medium rare, pretty much to the letter.  The problem was the crust or lack thereof.  I don't know what i did wrong but I must have not committed the meat to the skillet long enough to sear in the crust.  It just seemed like a piece of carne asada on the outside.   In one respect, that was very disappointing.  A great steak has a great outer crust to it, nicely charred and even a little crispy.  I'll have to try it again another time.

I always get the feeling that people in NY and on the East Coast care more about the Dodgers than Dodger fans do.   I was reading the message boards last night and people were obsessing about this move and that move that the Dodgers made, even writing them off.   The summary to the above -- it's early and it's just one game.

Tuna melts!  On that Friday when I was out in Santa Monica, I went to Swinger's and got a tuna melt.   I like tuna melts and that one really hit the spot.   Big fan.

I have more, but I shall save it for next time... my brain is losing steam.   Have a good Monday!

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