Sunday, September 20, 2009


In 2007, Lebron James made 25 million dollars to hawk, among other things: Nike, Cannondale, Coca-cola and Bubbilicious.

Peyton Manning, who seems to be in every commercial during football season, made 13 million in endorsements.

Tiger Woods, in 2007, made $100,000,000.00. Yes, you read that correctly: including the decimals, there are 10 zeros behind the 1. And that doesn't include the money he actually makes playing golf.

I always thought if I were a pro athlete, I would only endorse things that I actually use and believe in (I suppose that Michael Jordan really did like those Ballpark Franks). I doubt that Joe Namath really used those panty hose and how many people actually believed that Tiger Woods drove a Buick?

Here are some products, though I don't get paid by the companies, that I highly recommend:


2000 Nissan Maxima:
I bought mine new. I don't know if I ever will buy a new car again, but this one has been great. "Pomp", as I have named her, has been such a warrior and great friend. She still looks good and her 222 horsepower v6 engine still hums beautifully. I take good care of her, changing the oil, filters, wipers, etc when needed. She's on her 4th set of tires.

Sure Pomp has had her issues. Nissan went cheap on the power windows in this year model's Maximas. So I've had some issues with windows sticking and had to replace a switch on the driver's side. The O2 sensor was replaced at 82,000 miles and we had a timing issue at 140,000.
There was that time I brushed against a telephone pole (I blame Zoe) and had to get some body work. Not including the body work, regular maintenance and tires, I've put less than $500 into her in 9 years and 152,189 miles.

The accomplishment I am most proud of is that Pompey left North Carolina with me in July and, in the course of nearly 6 weeks, drove across North America and back. Her odometer read 143,613 when we left on July 9. Pomp was at 148,155 when I parked her for a week in Skagway, Alaska on July 27. When we finally arrived back in Hendersonville on August 18, the odometer registered 152,148.

She performed marvelously. With the windows up, AC off, cruise set at 57 mph and bicycles off the roof and in the back seat, we averaged 30-32 mpg on Canadian Highways (normal highway is 24-26). She handled the rough Alaska Highway (which is ALWAYS under construction) like a champion. We ate dust kicked by other cars, absorbed rocks thrown up by passing trucks and smashed enough bugs to fill a museum.
Her engine light did come on about a third into the drive home. The last day, the engine started misfiring going up hills. I thought our relationship was going to be over, she was quitting on me. Turns out, I needed to replace an engine coil. $74.00 part and free labor and Pomp is back to her old self. People ask me when I am going to replace my car. I say when she dies. I really envision myself driving Pomp until she has no more life; which in the Maxima may be a while.
Gas on Alaska Highway


Canon ELPH SD 630

This was my first digital camera and it's been a good one. I got it 4 years ago and it's been it's been to the Canadian Rockies, Alaska, Oregon Coast, Missouri River, Chicago, Vancouver, Washington DC, and dozens of football games, track meets and wrestling matches. It has been dropped from cliffs, exposed to freezing temperatures and rain, sat on, thrown and otherwise lovingly abused. It goes just about everywhere I go. I have used it almost daily for the last two years while taking a picture a day (1, 2). The zoom toogle sticks a little, but it is still working excellently. Oh, and it takes good pictures:
Glacier Lake Mirrored
Seeing what's ahead
Trails diverge

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