Tuesday, January 30, 2007

2007 Maryland Football Schedule

September 1: Villanova - First meeting since 1980. The Terps are 8-2 vs the Wildcats. Villanova, a member of the Division I-AA Atlantic 10 Conference, was 6-5 last season, winning its last four games.

September 8: At Florida International - The Terps played Florida International last year for the first time in school history and Maryland defeated FIU, 14-10 at Byrd Stadium.

September 13: West Virginia - West Virginia has a 22-21-2 edge in the series. WVU has finished in the top 10 of the final polls each of the last two seasons.

Sepember 22: At Wake Forest - Terps had their seven game winning streak against Wake snapped in the 2006 regular-season finale. Maryland owns a 40-14-1 advantage in the series.

September 29: At Rutgers - Maryland leads the all time series 4 games to 3. Rutgers finished 11-2. First time since 1942 these two teams have played one another.

October 6: Georgia Tech - Georgia Tech leads the series 13-5 Tech's won the last three meetings including last season's heart breaking defeat 27-23, in Atlanta.

October 13: Open Date

October 20: Virginia - The Terps lead the all-time series with Virginia (41-28-2). Maryland has won four of the last six meetings including last year rallying from 0-20 at halftime to win.

October 27: Clemson - Clemson leads 29-24-2 all-time, but the Terps have won four of the last six meetings.

November 3: At North Carolina: UNC leads the series 35-31-1. Maryland has won the last two games in Chapel Hill.

November 10: Boston College - Boston College and Maryland met for the first time in 21 years in Massachusetts last season with the Eagles winning 38-16. BC has won three of the four all-time meetings including the past two.

November 17: At Florida State - Maryland defeated Florida State for just the second time in 17 tries last season, 27-24 in College Park. FSU won the first 14 meetings in the series.

November 24: At North Carolina State - NC State leads series 30-29-4. The Terps have won five of the last seven, including two of the last three in Raleigh.

Schedule Notes:
The seven bowl teams from last year that appear on the Terps 2007 schedule include West Virginia, Wake Forest, Rutgers, Georgia Tech, Clemson, Boston College and Florida State.

Four 2007 opponents ranked in the Associated Press Top 25. West Virginia (#10), Rutgers (#12), Wake Forest (#18) and Boston College (#20). WVU, Rutgers, Wake Forest and Boston College all had at least 10 wins last season.

Side Note: I had to finally use an Admin feature where I had to turn on word verification for those who wish to leave comments. Too much spam.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Apollo 1 Remembered

Forty years ago today a fire destroyed the Apollo 1 spacecraft during a training exercise, killing astronauts Virgil "Gus" Grissom, Edward White and Roger Chaffee.

These astronauts were selected to be the first manned flight of an Apollo capsule to orbit the earth. Their mission was to take have taken place sometime in the first quarter of 1967. The purpose of this flight was to test launch operations, ground tracking and control facilities and the performance of the Apollo Saturn rocket. On January 27, 1967, the crew was in the middle of a launch simulation test when the fire broke out thanks to a spark from frayed electrical wire.

I did a little googling and some research from a couple books I have about the Apollo program and here is a recap of this horrible event.

Failure Is Not An Option by Gene Kranz

A Man On The Moon by Andrew Chaikin

First Man: The Life Of Neil A. Armstrong by James R. Hansen

Grissom, White and Chaffee were fully equipped and suited when they entered the Apollo capsule around 1:00 PM. They were strapped into their seats and hooked up to the capsule's systems. There was a problem with Grissom's space suit that delayed the tests for almost two hours. At 2:45 PM, the capsule hatch was sealed and the air already in the capsule had begun to be replaced by pure oxygen. Other problems included an alarm about high oxygen flow, faulty communications between the crew and the mission control room. These delayed the tests another three hours.

During the delay, the crew members were reclining in the capsule couches, running through a checklist of things they would do in space. Once this was completed, a plugs out drill (test of the capsule's internal back up power if the main source failed) was in process when at 6:31 PM a voice was heard in mission control "We've got fire in the cockpit." Seconds later, communications ended with a cry of pain. On the television monitors, Astronaut Ed White was seen attempting to open the hatch, which had sealed shut.

From Hansen's book, "A spark from the frayed wire jumped into some combustible material, likely foam padding or velcro patches. In the 100 percent oxygen atmosphere, even a momentary flicker-which in the open air would have ignited only into a small and easily controllable flame-became a firebomb. In the choking white heat, the three astronauts died from asphyxion in a matter of seconds, their respiratory systems not waiting for their bodies to be incinerated in the 2,500 degree farenheit furnace."

They never had a chance. Seventeen seconds from the first call of "Fire!" all three men were dead.

This tragedy led to a redesign of the Apollo capsule. Among the changes was the hatch would open outward (not inward like Apollo 1) and be operable in less than ten seconds. Flammable materials in the cabin were replaced with self-extinguishing materials. Plumbing and wiring were covered with protective insulation. Nylon spacesuits were replaced with coated glass fabric suits, which proved to be much more difficult to ignite.

The wiring improvements saved the crew of Apollo 13 as condensation that accumulated during the four day power shut-down of their command module did not cause any short circuits when they powered up prior to their re-entry.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Benjamin and a Virus

Activity here has been low because this past weekend Benjamin was sick. He didn't have a fever but he had diarrhea and he threw up a couple times. He was his usual self though, so we thought it was some 24 hour thing. I wasn't feeling to well either but I started to feel better Sunday evening. On Monday, Weena stayed home and worked so we kept Benjamin at home. He was fine and he slept well Monday evening.

Today he got to day care and within 45 minutes of being dropped off, he threw up twice so Weena made an appointment with Benjamin's pediatrician. Here's Weena's afternoon report after getting back from the doctors office:

The doctor saw Benjamin and he said that Benjamin has the rotovirus which can affect kids for a couple weeks at the most. Benjamin has the following symptoms: diarrhea, low grade fever, vomiting and nausea. The doctor said we just need to watch out for any dehydration. He instructed us to take dairy products away from his diet for the next week and give him alternative fluids. I asked about giving Gatorade and decaf tea, he said that’s fine, but my co-worker said try small amounts first or dilute it in water. At least Benjamin’s diarrhea is over, and so we have to watch out for vomiting. He’s fine but he’s hungry.

So we bought some lactose free milk tonight and Benjamin drank that like he normally does. We'll monitor his progress tonight and hope he does not throw up. He's mostly on a BRAT diet (Bananas, Rice, Apple & Toast) now.

More on this virus: The virus works by attacking the lining of the small intestine, causing often copious loss of fluids and electrolytes. The virus is spread through oral contact to fecal material, and is common in child care environments. While some medications may be prescribed to help treat symptoms such as nausea, there is currently no drug that is prescribed to treat the virus itself. Antibiotics are not effective since it is a viral infection as opposed to a bacterial infection.

These symptoms (listed above) usually last for 3-10 days. But even if the symptoms have subsided or improved, you should consider your child contagious for 10-12 days after the onset of diarrhea. Treatment at home includes plenty of rest and use of an oral electrolyte replacement solution such as Pedialyte. Begin giving Pedialyte at the first sign of loose stools or vomiting.

The biggest danger with this illness is dehydration. Signs of severe dehydration include irritability, lethargy, sunken eyes, sunken soft spot (in infants), dry mouth and tongue, less frequent bathroom trips and dry diapers for more than a couple of hours. If you notice these signs, it is imperative that you contact your physician immediately. If your child is hospitalized, IV rehydration is usually given and can save your child's life.

We're keeping him home the rest of the week so he gets a lot of rest and recovers. Both of us are taking time off from work to care for our little guy.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Five Generations

Top row left is my Great, Great Grandfather William. He was born in 1881 and was a Georgetown graduate and lawyer in Washington DC. He passed away in 1935. Top row right is William Jr, my Grandfather, shown here Christmas 1968 with his Mother. He was born in 1912 and died in 1989. Middle row left is William III, my Dad, shown here with Benjamin in December 2005. Middle row right is me, William IV in Spain in April 2000. Benjamin is in the last picture, which was taken in November 2006. Five generations. Why not William the fifth? Both Weena and I agreed if we were to have a boy we would name him Benjamin and we did. Eventually I will produce a fifth for Dad but it will be from the liquor store.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Couple Benjamin Pics

The picture on the left was taken on New Year's Day. Benjamin and his cousin Colton are hanging out. Colton is two and a half years old while Benjamin is a little over fourteen months. Both are American mestizos, a combination of American and Filipino (Colton's Mom is from the Philippines, like Weena). The picture on the right is Benjamin on Christmas morning when he was opening his presents. I love his expression here. Just thought I'd share these two.

I've been really amazed at Benjamin's progress. He is developing quite a vocabulary now. We like to sit down with picture and word books and have him try to pronounce various things. Tonight he learned how to say "thank you". He can point to any one of us and tell us who we are. When I pick him up at day care, he points and says "Daddy!" When Weena walks in the door after work, he says "Mommy!"

He's also learned how to signal a touchdown. When we watch football and yell "touchdown" he raises his arms in the air. He also points to the Maryland Terrapins logo and says "Turtle!". Tonight we watched part of the Caps game together and I'm teaching Benjamin how to say Olie (for goalie Olie Kolzig, he says "Leeeeeeeee") and Ovie (for Alexander Ovechkin, he says "Veeeeeee!").

I'll get him started on D.C. United chants in time for Spring.

Cal Ripken

Cal Ripken was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame today. When I heard the official news on the radio today, I got chills. I have a lot of great memories of Cal and consider myself lucky I lived fairly close to Baltimore so I could see him play in person a lot. All he did was play ball and the one image that will forever be etched in my memory is him catching the last out of the 1983 World Series. It was the Orioles last World Series championship and I remember this like it was yesterday.

There are a lot of great articles I came across on the internet today and I'll post some links from the Baltimore Sun. I still plan to pick up a Baltimore Sun tomorrow though. While surfing the internet for articles like this is fun, nothing beats having a paper in front of you to really soak up all the news, stats and photos.

Ripken Elected To Hall of Fame by Dan Connolly

Ripken punctuates Baltimore legacy with Hall pass by Childs Walker

Ripken's tale one of pure fantasy by John Eisenberg

Special tribute to Cal Ripken from the Baltimore Sun

Thursday, January 04, 2007

First Post of 2007

To welcome in the new year, here are some recent pics of Benjamin:

Kicking back in his Elmo chair

Daddy and Benjamin before church

Future Terps Quarterback

All those are neat pics of our little guy and you can see how he has progressed at almost fifteen months.

However, this is something that Benjamin has learned recently. Escorting my Father in Law, who is blind, to the dinner table. As Benjamin has grown, he has sensed something was a little different about his Grandfather as he would watch him as he maneuvered around the house with his cane. Weena and my Mother in Law trained Benjamin to do this and each night he escorts him to the dinner table with love and a smile. Seeing this gives me a great sense of satisfaction as his Dad.

Happy New Year everyone!