Chuq Von Rospach is a Silicon Valley veteran doing Technical Community Management and amateur photographer with a strong interest in birds, wildlife and landscapes. My goal is to explore the Western states and working to tell you the stories of the special places I've found. You can find out more on the About Page.
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Monthly Archives: August 2005
it’s summer vacation time — and not suprisingly, we’re headed North.
if it’s Sunday, it must be Vancouver. We left San Jose about 10 Saturday, got into Portland in time for a nice Dinner at Stanfords, took off a bit after 8 sunday morning, and hit the hotel room about 3:30, and were sitting in Yaletown Brewing for a nice dinner at 5.
When we tell people we drive on these trips, we always get asked why. Vancouver is so far away — why not fly?
First, we like driving. It gives us a chance to unplug, unwind, and enjoy the journey. I used to do most of the driving; since buying the BMW, Laurie won’t let me drive now. I’d complain, but… I don’t mind.
Second, it’s really not that far. It’s about 1000 miles, 14-15 hours driving in good weather. That’s about twice the distance of San jose to Los Angeles, and it’s easy to do in two easy shifts — no marathons required.
Third, it’s a lot cheaper. gas: about $110 + hotel: $80. Travel time (start to finish): 34 hours. To fly? Supershuttle to SFO, $75 each way. Tickets to Vancouver: $350 per person each way. Throw in a rental car — about $225/week for two weeks. And an extra day in our destination hotel: $200. That’s, um, $200 to drive, versus flying: about $1700.
And if we fly? Out of SFO, we can either fly around 8AM, or about 7PM. If we fly out at 8AM saturday, we have to be at the airport 90 minutes before that, an hour’s drive away, and the shuttle will add in a fudge factor. So we have to get up at 3AM? or fly out about 7PM, not get to the hotel until close to midnight — room service time, if it’s still open. Flying’s been made so inconvenient — why bother? For an extra $1500, we get one extra meal in Vancouver and one more evening in the city. instead, we had a really good meal in Portland. (and this assumes we’re staying here. we’re not — we’re actually spending time here, Victoria, Seattle and Portland — in practice, at least three plan transfers (shudder) if we fly.
And finally — with a car, you can pack stuff in it and bring it home. Like, say, a case or two of good wine from British Columbia, Washington and Oregon. Try that in coach class. And since we aren’t spending all of that money on plane tickets, we can spend that money on wine instead. and good meals…
We end up saving $1500 or so; we lose about 8 hours net time in Vancouver, somewhat less time on the return trip from Portland (same day, no overnight), and actually gain time not worrying about the flying hassle on transfers to other cities. . Nice tradeoff.
Have you sat down and considered the tradeoffs on your trips? It might surprise you.
the drive north was almost non-eventful (which is nice). Highlight (or lowlight) of the trip was driving up 5 past Mount Shasta (a beautiful, if hot, place to visit) when we get passed by a car. Laurie goes “what is that hanging from his car?”
“That” turned out to be the hose from a gas pump, still inserted into the gas tank, On the other end, the connector (designed to separate if some idiot drives away from a pump without removing the hose) had died a hero, and was sparking its way down the road. Between the hose, the sparks and the fact that the guy was driving like a royal idiot (way too fast, way too aggressive) we made sure to give him a wide berth. We followed him at a good distance for a few miles, when suddenly he braked and made a mad dash for the side of the road (nearly going through the fenders of a car to the side of him…..), and stopped. when we went by, he was standing next to the car, staring at the hose.
one can only wonder at how this happened. And what the gas station attendant thought.
We made Portland (actually, Clackamas) in time for an early dinner at, and a nice drive up to Vancouver on Sunday. It took us about 20 minutes to cross the border at Peace Arch, and arrived in Vancouver in the early afternoon, checked in to the hotel, and went off in search of food….
To those who have coshed Bettman’s decision: At some point, Bertuzzi does have to return to the NHL. Whether it is on October 5, or 20 games from then, or two years from then, none of these scenarios will adequately atone for what he did. Bertuzzi can never repair the damage done to Steve Moore or to his own personal reputation.
Putting aside the missed opportunities to play for Team Canada and a lost season of hockey, what he did to Steve Moore will alone damn Bertuzzi for the rest of his days. Think about that. In 2055, should an article be penned about a then 80-year-old Bertuzzi, it’ll centre upon ‘the incident.’ It will, in fact, define the rest of his life.
I think part of the reality is that no matter what the NHL did to punish Bertuzzi, there’s a group of fans who’ll complain it’s not enough. If the season hadn’t been cancelled, I expect Bertuzzi’s suspension would have been longer.
Now? I just think it’s time to move forward. Hockey’s trying to put a lot of ugly past behind it; it might as well put this behind it at the same time. Giving Bertuzzi another 5 games, or 10, or 20, wouldn’t really solve anything; Bertuzzi lost an entire year of his career to the lockout, a major part of his total career. If the NHL went and added more games to Bertuzzi’s suspension, all that would do is cause this black cloud to stretch out into the season — for no good reason.
Don’t see this as the NHL being easy on Bertuzzi — as James Mirtle points out, Bertuzzi will live with this the rest of his life — but the nHL choosing to start fresh and focussing on moving forward and rebuilding.
And I think that’s a good idea. Why give the press a hook to talk about anything other than the new league rebuilding? I dono’t see the logic.
And if you think about it, Bertuzzi got a much more severe penalty than many other similar incidents in the past. Gary Suter on Paul Kariya, anyone? Sergei Federov’s two handed attack to Jay More’s head?
Under normal circumstances, the suspension should have been longer.
This season — is anything but normal. The needs of the NHL to move forward outweigh the interests of those who want to see Bertuzzi punished further. Especially since, for some, “forever” is still not long enough.