Monday, September 18, 2017

Top Ten Pound-For-Pound

Here's my pound-for-pound list. I take into account ability and accomplishment. The previous list was posted on May 12.

1. Andre Ward (32-0, 16 KOs) [Previous Rank: 1]
2. Terence Crawford (31-0, 22 KOs) [5]
3. Gennady Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KOs) [3]
4. Saul Alvarez (49-1-2, 34 KOs) [4]
5. Guillermo Rigondeaux (17-0, 11 KOs) [6]
6. Sergey Kovalev (30-2-1, 26 KOs) [2]
7. Adonis Stevenson (29-1, 24 KOs) [8]
8. Keith Thurman (28-0, 22 KOs) [9]
9. Vasyl Lomachenko (8-1, 7 KOs) [10]
10. Erislandy Lara (25-2-2, 14 KOs) [Not ranked}

Exiting the list:
Manny Pacquiao (59-7-2, 38 KOs) [7]

Monday, September 11, 2017

Day 2 in Harpers Ferry

We left the hotel after Candace's poop clogged up the toilet. We drove to Harpers Ferry going over last evening's bridge into Virginia and then taking another bridge over the Shenandoah River into West Virginia. After we parked, there was the option of taking a shuttle into town or walking the two miles, hopefully along the coast. Bug voted for the shuttle, but wasn't forceful enough and lost out.

The walk involved another scamper across the highway- this time we had the benefit or a traffic light at least- and some precarious walking on the narrow shoulder of a road. Bug kept giving me "I told you so" looks and Candace said, "You know Bug was right." I was just about to admit it when we saw a sidewalk in the distance. Once I reached it, I knelt down and kissed it like a freed hostage returning to his homeland.

The walk into town, which was not along the shoreline at all, was interesting. We admired the porches and different style houses along the way. I was carded at 7-11 while buying Bug cigarettes, something that never happens to me back home. There were some tough hills along the way and pushing the stroller was a challenge, especially since I was sore from yesterday.

We ate at what might be the only accessible restaurant in Harpers Ferry. It had a nice view of the mountains and the train. My daughter didn't want to cooperate and I mostly ate standing up swaying her back and forth. My son chowed down on his first ever pickle, considering the twins just ate solid food for the first time on Friday... avocados. He also put some steak in his mouth and a tomato. He spit them out. My daughter grabbed potato chips from my hand and alternately tried to shove them in my mouth and drop them on the ground.

We kept walking and Candace pumped in public for the first time at the bottom of High Street. Bug hoped to get us frozen custard, but it turned out to be ice cream. She was disappointed, but I like it although the strawberry tasted like cherry ice cream with strawberries. After a long pit stop, we walked by the only site I really wanted to see, John Brown's Fort. It was underwhelming.

We then saw a beautiful view of the two rivers converging. We walked on the pedestrian bridge I had spotted yesterday- which was accessible only on one side- and saw Paw Paw Tunnel pretty close up. I had a panic attack being on the bridge pushing the stroller and I was thankful a train didn't come by while we were on the bridge. The tracks were extremely close to the bridge and I think the combination of the heights and the train being so close would have pushed over the edge.

We took a shuttle back to the parking lot and it was quick and fairly easy. I tried to get Bug to sit next to me with my son, but she didn't and an Australian guy started making small talk with me about the babies which was almost as bad as plummeting to a watery grave. After we arrived at the parking lot, Candace entertained a curious five year old. A man then came up and asked out kids' names. He recognized them as Hebrew and said, "Mazel tov" to us, probably an unusual occurrence in West Virginia.

We were tired but happy to have had the experience when we decided to make one last trip to Sonic on the way home. Everyone got their drinks and food excited once again to indulge in this still rare treat. I only wanted a drink this time. A minute later, that drink collapsed onto my feet; the bottom of the cup having snapped and drenched the floor as my daughter screamed. I sang to her- the alphabet and a declaration of fatherly love worked the best- mourning my fallen beverage.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Trip to Harpers Ferry

After picking up Sonic- a rare treat for a DC area resident- we checked into the hotel on the Maryland side of the border. The hotel looked wheelchair accessible from the photos online, but turned out to be unquestionably not accessible. The receptionist told us that he constantly complained to upper management to bring the hotel up to code but his pleas evidently fell on deaf ears.

We set out on a walk to Harpers Ferry, which was supposed to be about a mile and half away. My plan was to take a short walk to the C&O Canal path to a pedestrian bridge that would cross to Potomac into West Virginia. It seemed pretty simply on Google maps.

The walk started off bizarrely. We walked along the highway, Candace in a wheelchair, me pushing an unwieldy behemoth of a twin stroller, and Bug bringing up the rear. We must've appeared like a menacing gang to any onlookers. We reached  a bridge that had a very narrow walkway and Candace had trouble getting the wheelchair through the narrow opening. The width of the stroller also posed a problem, so I was tasked with jogging over the bridge to see if it was the right way. I have a big fear of heights and bridges make me especially anxious because my real fear is plummeting to a watery grave.

The view from the bridge was stunning- full trees climbing up the rolling mountain above the smooth current of the Potomac River- but the chain fence disappeared and I realized that it was possible to trip and fall to a watery grave in the Potomac.

I went about halfway and cringed at the thought of pushing the stroller over this long bridge on the off chance it was the right way. So I came back, but I did manage to see the C&O path way far below us.

We decided to head back to the hotel and ask, but Candace saw a sign that said "River Trail" with an arrow pointing left. So we- wheelchair, stroller, and all- decided to run across several lanes of highway traffic to follow the sign. Turns out the sign said "River & Trail" and seemed to be for a store, rather than an actual trail.

We crossed the highway again and went back to ask the receptionist how to go to the trail. I half-listened to his explanation. We piled into the van- no small task- and headed in the right direction until I determined that we should turn on Sandy Hook Road. The receptionist didn't mention anything about Sandy Hook Road and the name didn't seem like a good omen, but I decided it was the right was to go based on the map on my phone.

Sandy Hook Road turned into a curvy mountain road that we had to inch forward in some stretches in order to avoid a head-on collision. We eventually drove by the pedestrian bridge I had seen on Google Maps and saw that it wasn't wheelchair or stroller accessible. We turned back, went through the winding road again, and finally found a good spot to park (which happened to be where the receptionist had told us to park).

From there we walked the C&O Canal path. It was a gravel path, which made for a bumpy ride for Candace and the babies. Bug was hopped up on sugar and she and Candace, who was not hopped up on sugar, took turns insulting and threatening me, which they found very funny. There was a pool of algae covered water under the railroad tracks. We reached a few openings in the path and got a glimpse of the view, which was worth crossing a couple highways for.

Along the way, Bug grabbed a weird looking fruit, peeled it and ate it. I was sure she was going to die when Candace also took a bite. They both marveled at how sweet it tasted, so risking death I took a bite too. It tasted like a mango- which I like- crossed with a banana- which I don't. Turns out they're called paw paws. None of us are dead yet.

We walked all the way to a spot under the first bridge and turned back. Bug and I were aching when we made it back to the hotel, exhausted from pushing the stroller, carrying my chubby little son, and an ill-advised sprint on the bridge earlier in the evening.