Sunday, December 11, 2011

Cool Race Fab Ideas

This should have been posted way back in July when it happened, but I was busy. When I worked the scales at the ICSCC races, I looked around the cars and found 2 genius ideas.
The first one: If your car is on fire and you are able to stop and get out, and then you feel like using the mandatory on board fire extinguisher, where would you like that to be? Bolted to the floor of the passenger side (where everyone puts it) so that you have to reach back into the burning car you just jumped out of? No, that's stupid. How about just inside the door where all you have to do is pull a quick pin.

The second great idea: You know how everybody installs the window net into a hole on one end, and a seat belt latch on the other? That pretty much is impossible to do by the driver once he's strapped in isn't it? What if one end was attached by a heim joint? Then the net can still drop out of the way, but it's always attached, and all you have to do is swing it up.


I got together a distinguished panel of judges so that we could rate several interesting beers all at once. Because one of the group didn't care for very hoppy beers, and one of us (me), only likes hoppy beers,we figured those 2 votes would cancel each other out. Also, since not everyone in the group thinks Nelson IPA is the best beer ever, for this test a 10 is whatever each person considered to be a 10. There were 6 judges and a dog. Here's what we decided:
Eel River Organic - 5.2, had a sort of lavender taste to it.
Diamond IPA - 5.8, really hoppy.
Total Domination - 6.3, forgot to write down notes.
Third Voyage - 6, unless you add in the dog's vote. She didn't finish her bowl, so we called that a 3.That brought the average down to 5.4. Really, Really Hoppy.
Loser - 5.4, this test was unfair because we had been drinking IPA's all this time and this was the only pale ale, a retest will be done.
Tricerahops - 6.7, forgot to write down my notes, and somebody forgot to vote, so this might be a hollow victory. Maybe this calls for a retest, also. In fact, perhaps the entire procedure may be an ineffective way to judge beer. But it was fun, so what the hell.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Real IPA

I bought this IPA from jolly old England the other day. For those of you don't know, India Pale Ale was an English invention. A way to keep beer from going bad on the long, hot voyage to India. In the back of my mind, I was thinking I wasn't gonna like it, but couldn't remember why.
Now I know. It's boring. It was modern craft brewers, particularly those here in the Northwest who cranked up the hops to the level I now expect from beer. God Bless America!

Oops, forgot to give it a rating. It's a perfectly good beer, just not when you're a hop fiend like me. I'll say 7.

Monday, November 21, 2011

The Plight of the Gearhead

It's not easy being a Gearhead. I went to the vintage races, and there were so many beautiful cars, but the one that stood out from the crowd for me was this "barn find" midget that was a basket case. All I see when I look at stuff like that is what it could be, and how cool it used to be, thus I am burdoned with a never ending list of projects.
What's a Gearhead to do?
Do you feel my pain?

Friday, November 18, 2011


Mongoose was my favorite beer a few years back, and I was always happy when I found a place that sold it.
I tried some a few weeks ago, and wasn't impressed. I figured I better drink some more and pay attention this time. So. I decided the problem is not with Mongoose, there is no problem at all. It's good news! There are so many other great IPA's out there, that Mongoose is now just run of the mill. What used to be a 10 is now a 7.

Friday, November 11, 2011

For Hippies Only

Fish Tale Organic IPA
Being part hippy myself, I was hoping this would be an exceptional beer. Sadly, it’s just….average.
It’s good, nothing to complain about, but, nothing to brag about either. I guess average would be a 5. But let’s give it a bonus point for being organic, and call it a 6. Don’t forget to recycle the bottle, or bad mojo will visit your teepee.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Book Signing Event

I'm having my first book signing event at Little Italy, the wine and beer place about a block from my house. Yeah, it's also a gas station. That's where I buy my race gas.
December 3rd, from 4 to 6. Why should you come? Because there will be free beer and wine tastings!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The life and times of Karmann Electra part 5

After we missed the July race (again), I figured I should at least autocross poor old Karmann.
She doesn't have much body roll, and is well balanced.

Brown IPA

So here's an interesting beer. It's a brown ale with all the hops of an IPA. I really like it, I give it an 8. It's not a heavy beer like most dark beers, but it has it's own unique flavor.

Here's the brewers explanation.

Sunday, October 23, 2011


How manly is this thing? Do you think that maybe the peak of technology for serious work vehicles peaked in the 60's? I drove a brand new Ford Exploder this week, and it was the most feminine vehicle I have ever experienced. What a joke. Take it off road? Not even on a dare.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Here's a keeper

Here's a great local beer from Sandpoint. the balance of all the flavors is very good, super hoppy, I give it a 9.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Hop Overload

I know I have been doing a half-assed job on my beer posts, but here's the deal. Most of the beers have no really remarkable or unique thing to talk about. Besides that, after those giant beers, I can't remember what I was going to say! I finally have something to report. I think I have met my match for hoppiness. The skull on the label of this beer is fair warning, this is so hoppy, it's crazy. 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Smokey Yunick

One of my heroes is Smokey Yunick, a brilliant innovator, inventor and racer. Some say he is the biggest cheater ever. I just read something where Smokey explains what he considers cheating, and he puts it in a way that has evaded me for quite some time. I hate cheaters, but I love people who imagine a new way of doing something. Here's how Smokey sees the difference between the 2.

"All along, NASCAR could have gotten me to "behave" by writing rules without ambiguities because I refused to cheat. There was no craft or fun in that. Whenever a rule appeared outlawing something, I instantly gave it up."

That's how I see it too, I would never do anything that is against the rules, but finding things no one else ever thought of is the best part of racing/car building.
 Here's the article, and if you like it, look for the book about Smokey. The man was a genius.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Television is a drug

I turn off the cable in the fall after Formula 1 is over because if TV is there, I will turn it on, and then I will waste my time.
This year, I toyed with the idea of not turning it back on because it seemed poor judgement to spend several hundred dollars to watch racing. I gave in though, and had cable installed just in time for the Melbourne Gran Prix.
Oh My God, Formula 1 did not disappoint! Within the first few minutes of practice this morning I learned about some technological  developments that blew my mind.
I love F1.
I am going to make a board on the forum and will explain what they are doing on there.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Beer Reviews

It is going to be a tremendous hardship trying out every new IPA that comes along, but I am willing to take one for the team.
What I consider to be my favorite beer changes all the time, but right now, I have to say that this:
is the best beer ever made. It's not cheap, it comes 4 to a pack instead of 6, but it is fantastic. My only complaint is that it's almost 10% alcohol, so that makes it a little tough to come home, have a beer, and then do work out in the shop. After 1 of these you just want to sit on the couch!
So, my beer rating system will be this: Deadlift is a 10, Bud light is 1. I am not very good at describing the subtle nuances of beer, I just know what I like. I recently tried Alpha Dog IPA, and it is excellent, I would have to give it a 9. If you want to read a review from someone who is very talented at descriptions, go here:

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


We had a big blizzard last week, and I was out driving in the worst of it. I could hardly see where the road was, it was cool!
The next day, there were snowdrifts all over the place, and I realized I have an unusual interest in the drifts. I like to see the wind at work, it turns the whole world into a wind tunnel, and the snow is the smoke that helps you visualize it.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Gas Guzzlers

I went to the meeting of the Panhandle Electric Vehicle Association last night.Their website is down, but here’s a link to the nationwide club they are part of:
They were certainly a friendly group of gearheads, and joining would be obligatory for anyone building their own car. I have wanted to make a conversion for a long time, but the last thing I need is another project. I also live so far from where I work at the moment, it’s not quite realistic. They showed the movie “Who killed the electric car”. This is a movie you should definitely see, a perfect example of how cool technology is scrapped for short sighted profits.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

French Toast

It will definitely be a while until the book is released now. I made a tactical error in thinking my local publisher/printer would be making my book. It turns out, they don’t want to because “they don’t do cookbooks”. Really, you want to print books by local authors with a local interest, but you still want to put restrictions on what kind of book it is.
So, now I have to learn all about the publishing industry, which is one of those obtuse, quirky professions not based on logic or common sense. Yeah, that ought to be right up my alley.
Some of these guys will only take submissions by e-mail, some absolutely not by e-mail. Some won’t accept submissions at all, you must have an agent first. Most won’t do a cookbook, only typical fiction type works, but I found a few who do. One is a place run by 2 lovely white haired ladies, I don’t think they will get it.
You find the phrase "enough torque to pull the panties off a nun" offensive?
One place requires a minimum of 200 recipes in a cookbook. Really? Mine has half that, and by the time you do all those, you can cook anything. One place is selling a book that is all about French Toast. An entire book about French Toast. Are you freeking kidding me? Here’s all you need to know about French Toast:
Get a shallow bowl, mix up a couple eggs and a little bit of milk in the bowl. Get some regular white bread, preferably a little older and dried out. Toss it in the bowl, and coat both sides with egg mixture. Throw it in a frying pan with some oil, and cook until done, about 3 minutes per side.
Done, 60 words, why would anyone buy an entire book about French Toast?