Saturday, November 26, 2011

The annual Christmas list

What'd I'd really like is for our dog to stop eating the couch. Not sure they had any Black Friday specials on that...So I'm 30 now and honestly I have everything I need. I have just enough sweaters to fit into an awesome new (for us) armoire that Amanda and I refinished. That said, several people have asked me for a christmas list. Here are a few things that make me drool.

Matching fitted dress shirts (button down collar please) and ties or just ties to match the shirts I already own. I'm a size 15.5 34/35

A six to eight inch chopping knife. 
A tie tack such as this
A sandcast turquoise Belt Buckle such as this
Rolling carry-on Luggage (22 x 16 x 9). Please not black (or at least let it be patterned).
T-Shirts like this or this or this
Your favorite cds or any of these: The Gossip Music For MenMuse The Resistance Ceremonials by Florence & The Machine
Striped or argyle socks (I'm a size 10)

Friday, October 28, 2011

Oh yeah, I remember nights like this

Stay tuned for a post about this badass artist

The past 18 months have absolutely flown by. I moved to Denver (with my girlfriend!), jumped into a startup business in Colorado's most ridiculous industry, turned the bottom line from red to black, finished my MBA, and adopted an insane dog. Amanda finished law school and then took and passed the heinous bar exam. Since then we've crammed as much fun into the summer and fall as possible. It's been fun but recently I've been feeling worn out.

For the past two nights, Amanda's been gone and I've taken the opportunity to be lazy. Tonight I put game 7 of the World Series on, listened to new music, and trolled the interwebs, just as I used to do before grad school. God it feels good to do nothing sometimes.

Tonight I discovered the song 1 by Joy Zipper while listening to some commercial. Honestly it makes a better ad ditty than a stand alone song but right now it's serving as the perfect soundtrack to a nice laid back  evening with Lance Berkman and the puppies.

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Review of A Dance With Dragons

Posted also on Goodreads.

Many will not like A Dance With Dragons. I and others are still bitter that books 4 and 5 were split based on worlds--at this point clearly a failure that jars the reader. Obviously Dragons continues along these longitudinal lines.

More importantly though, in Dragons George R.R. Martin departs from a number of themes established in past Ice & Fire books. But did you really want to read another tome detailing yet another war party raid along the trident? Past books had shown a tendency toward devolving into rape, murder, and heads on stakes, which is all well and good but we are over 3000 pages into the series. Mindless violence groweth stale.

Enter Dragons, set in a largely new land for us readers. For the first time in the series, Martin introduces quest themes. He also spends more time letting us read our heroes' thoughts, and not just watching their actions. At this point we have seen them defined by actions and we want more: More depth and more character development. Dragons delivers. Here too, are just enough new characters to bolster the favorites we longed for in A Feast for Crows. There are also underpinnings of romance, something alluded to but rarely explored in books 1-4. As for specific stories, Jon Snow's is great and Arya's is one of the best yet. You'll still get plenty of the violence, intrigue, and insane plot twists that you've come to expect. Just as you didn't like the outcome of every confrontation in Book 1, you may not like what you read here. Isn't that what drew you in though?

The book is flawed, as are most of this length. Daenerys's tale wallows, as it has now for some time. Dorne is still relegated to a bench warming position, and the book spends almost too much time in the distant past. But make no mistake this book is great. It is a rambling epic that brings us into a world increasingly different from reality in ways that delight the mind. The magic is inventive, the twists epic, and the writing is quite nice too.

Dragons injects life into a series that frankly needed it. To be a success, book six will have to put the pressure cooker on, leading to the epic climax in the final book that we've all been waiting for. Although as any fan of the series knows, at George's age and pace, it might just be a success if book six gets written. I for one will enjoy reading Dragons half a hundred times more while I wait.

Thursday, July 28, 2011


A while ago, Amanda and I adopted what turned out to be a neurotic rescue dog from the German Shorthaired Pointer Rescue in Penrose, CO.

For the first time since getting Emmy the dog, Amanda and i are going to leave her as we embark on a five day four night vacation tour of Colorado. Our friend Fernando has quixotically agreed to housesit. This may go horribly.

Weekend Odds:
Fernando says never again: 33%
Emmy pees inside: 60%
Olivia bites Fernando: 70%
Fernando teaches Emmy to stay: 15%
Fernando can figure out Roxy's cat feeder: 66%
Olivia eats anything in the first 36 hours we are gone: 25%

Sunday, July 17, 2011

It's 3:30am and omg the interwebs are awesome.

I really am serious that I would not choose another time period to be born in than this. Humanity has jumped the shark. Thanks Awkardfamilypetphotos.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

(Slow) Dancing with Dragons

After a 5 year hiatus George R.R. Martin finally finished writing A Dance With Dragons, book five of seven in the Fire and Ice series. The interwebs are all a-twitter with fantasy lovers shelling out $19 for advance hardback copies. I have been anxiously awaiting this book since a friend turned me on to the series about four years ago.

I've actually decided to wait a bit longer on the book.

  1. I'm rereading the series (again) and still have Feast For Crows remaining. 
  2. I often read in bed and hardback books are cumbersome and uncomfortable to rest on my chest.
  3. I'm cheap and would rather pay $7-$10 for a used copy than the $18 for a new one.
  4. I quixotically believe that I can keep the spoiler blinders on for another three months. 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Amanda is an awesome person

I am frequently inspired by Amanda. Here's one example:

Amanda is extremely busy preparing for finals for her last semester in law school. She is working part time, volunteering with multiple orgs, helping my business, and interviewing for other jobs. She rarely gets enough sleep and I know that her workload has been immense.

Even with all that, she decided to organize a dinner for the cleaning staff at the law school. These fifteen or so people come every evening and work till around midnight vacuuming, sweeping, etc. Most law students don't even acknowledge their existence. Tonight Amanda honored their work by providing a tasty tamale dinner.

Friday, March 04, 2011

banana response

Yesterday I posted an open letter regarding Del Monte's packaged bananas but apparently I emailed the wrong Del Monte. Here is the response:

Dear Truman,

Thank you for your e-mail about packaged bananas.

The story you are referring to involves Fresh Del Monte Produce, Inc, not Del Monte Foods. Del Monte Foods is one of the USA's largest producers, distributors and marketers of premium quality branded consumer foods and pet products. Our line of processed fruit products includes canned fruits, as well as premium processed chilled fruit sold in the produce section of your store. For a full list of our chilled fruit products, visit

Del Monte Foods is not affiliated with Fresh Delmonte, a company that markets fresh fruits, fresh vegetables and fresh produce under the Del Monte brand. The product you contacted us about is not made by our company, but instead is a product of Fresh Del Monte. Their website is, and their contact information is:

Del Monte Fresh Produce Co.
P.O. Box 14922 2
Coral Gables, FL 33114-9222

Consumer toll free number: 1-800-950-3683

I appreciate the opportunity to respond and hope this information is helpful.

Cathy, Del Monte Foods Consumer Affairs

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Open Letter to Del Monte: Why you are no longer top banana

Thanks to Adventures in Denver (aka Amanda) for this bit of news regarding Del Monte's plan to sell packaged individual bananas. Oh and did you know that this move is being touted by the company as green? You can read blatant attempt at doublespeak in an article posted by Daily Mail. The only thing green about this bogus new plan is the banana itself. Ahem,

I'm writing in response to the unveiling, or should I say the repackaging of your flagship product, the banana. I won't bore you by stating facts that you already know, that the banana comes off the tree clad in a perfect wrapper already, etc.

What is upsetting is that you are touting this wrapper as green. It's not green, it's wasteful and unnecessary. Telling us, your consumers that it's green is simply insulting because it implies that we're stupid.

Selling bananas at gyms and gas stations is a great idea. But please don't  waste this planet. Please consider a return to naked fruit.

When you do, I'll consider buying your brand of products again.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

No Shortcuts to the Top

I recently finished reading the aforementioned book by Ed Viesturs, the first American to summit all fourteen 8,000 meter peaks. His feat is even more impressive when you consider that he did so without using supplemental oxygen. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in motivation, climbing, and patience. Since I'm very interested in two out of three, this proved to be a great read. What struck me most was the measured and careful way in which Ed climbed. Upon discovering that conditions were simply too dangerous to continue climbing, Ed repeatedly turned around to await a safer opportunity, often doing so less than 400 feet from the summit. Unlike so many climbers who have pushed themselves way too far, allowed themselves to get started late, or failed to put in the hard work training, Ed time and again refuses to make these completely avoidable missteps. Everyone loves a good adventure story and climbers such as Reinhold Messner, Maurice Herzog, and Herman Buhl deliver exactly these but these are climbers who have pushed themselves well beyond any acceptable risk threshold and as a result, it's hard for me to relate. As Viesturs penned frequently in 'No Shortcuts,' "Getting to the top is optional; getting down is mandatory." In my next post I'll be compiling a list of Climbing dos and don'ts but for now, suffice to say that I have a new hero.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Putting the Meh in Melo

February is a very boring month for sports. Football is over, it's not yet time for March Madness, and the NBA is in the middle of yet another interminably long, meaningless regular season. Honestly February is probably why the SI Swimsuit Edition was created.

So former Nuggets Forward Carmelo Anthony is headed to New York City. In return, Denver gets about 37 role players and some draft picks. I'm having trouble caring. Carmelo seems like a nice guy and he certainly put in his time here but he's not a leader. Over the past few years, The Nuggets have acted like children, being selfish with the ball, squabbling, tweeting inappropriate things, not playing defense, and generally playing the game the way they want to play it, not the way teams need to play to win championships.

When I watch sports I want to be inspired. I want to see people face adversity and triumph. I want to see players excel because they put in hard work. Carmelo Anthony never put in hard work and he rarely excelled. Sure he's had plenty of nice games. But when was the last time you saw Melo dive on the floor for a loose ball?

Melo doesn't inspire. He's got a pretty shot and it can be fun to watch him take people off the dribble and make them look slow but he's not much of a team player and he didn't really make anyone around him better. Have fun in New York, Melo. Or should I say Meh lo.

Friday, February 18, 2011

RIP Sam Taylor

 Sam Taylor (farthest from left) flexing some muscle 2009

I was saddened to read this afternoon in the Boulder Daily Camera of Samantha Taylor's passing. I met Sam when she joined the Colorado swing dance scene about three years ago. We spent a season at the University of Colorado preparing for the 2009 Intercollegiate Swing Battle, in which the team ended up taking 2nd Place. Vivacious and talented, Sam was a quick study and a natural at aerials. I didn't know her well but in the short time I spent dancing alongside her, she brightened my life. Sam, you'll be missed.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Open Letter to


I love your company and have purchased several awesome deals. My girlfriend has purchased even more of them. I was appalled however, after viewing your Super Bowl ad mocking the situation in Tibet. I was then outraged several days later when I saw another of your ads, this one poking fun at endangered whales. Neither of these things are funny in any way. "Oh... the situation in Tibet is horrible! But don't worry, Groupon let's me get tasty curry?" That's textbook offensive.

Your company does well because people like my girlfriend and I read your emails and then buy those products or services. I can't speak for her but I promise I will not be opening your emails or buying any groupons for as many months as I see offensive ads. So far we're at two. I will however be checking out your competitors. See you in mid April, unless you prefer to promote your company by making fun of AIDS or something equally "funny."

Truman Bradley

Saturday, February 05, 2011

A Sharpe Bust in Canton


The only time the name Shannon Sharpe and the word bust will be uttered in the same sentence is in reference to his place today and forevermore in the National Football League's Hall of Fame.* Sharpe is probably best known for his trash talking but it should be noted that this three time Super Bowl winner revolutionized the tight end position. Players such as Dallas Clark and Antonio Gates have a lot to thank Shannon for. Congratulations Shannon; I can't wait to hear your speech.

Readers of this blog may remember that I was upset that Sharpe was not elected at his first opportunity in 2009.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Sunrise Sunset

"Sunrise, sunset
Sunrise, sunset
Swiftly fly the years
One season following another
Laden with happiness and tears"
--Sunrise, Sunset --Fiddler On The Roof

My Grandpa is dying. Alzheimer's Disease has him moseying down a very long gradual slide back into mental infancy. After my Grandma died in 2005, Grandpa lived on his own in a little Florida community full of old people until he couldn't take care of himself. Then he (was) moved to my parents' house in Boulder. Over the next few years, my family struggled as it became clear that the man we were caring for now bore increasingly less resemblance to the Grandpa we'd known before. About two years ago he moved into a "retirement community" ironically called Sunrise. With Amanda's gentle persuading, she and I visit him once a week or so. At Sunrise his meals are fixed and his every need is attended to. He is lucky to be able to afford something like this. He is pretty out of it but appears to be happy. 

Now his descent is steepening. For me, it's gotten very hard to watch. On the best of days, my Grandpa has the faculties of a three year old. On Friday when Amanda and I went to see him, he could only communicate certain needs by pointing. When he was able to speak, dinner "conversation" consisted of him telling me repeatedly that "food is good" and that the female employees at Sunrise are all his girlfriends. He needs help performing all life functions and I worry about his dignity, even though that's a concept he can't comprehend anymore. 

I don't begrudge my Grandpa his death. He's eighty-eight and he's lived a wonderful life. At 17, he walked away from the coal mines of Ohio to build a better life. He served in the Pacific Ocean Theater in WWII and then moved to his family including my mother to Tennessee to open a factory. Decades later, when the factory closed he found jobs for over 1,000 of his employees. Together he and my Grandma bootstrapped this family into the middle class. They traveled all over the world and once square danced on the Great Wall of China. 

I am lucky that I made it nearly three decades before experiencing the (imminent) death of anyone close to me. I'm finally discovering that, to state the obvious, death is really hard. My mother has helped her Dad take every step down this path and she reminds me that easing a loved one's passing is a "joyful obligation:" a task that helps everyone. Although it's really difficult to watch him decline, I know that she is right. Seeing him slowly lose the ability to remember, walk, and even talk provides a visceral reminder: We are all going to die someday.   

I didn't learn much from Grandpa before he began dying but he's taught me a great deal since then. When I leave Sunset each week, I do so in tears. But seeing Grandpa also leaves me hungry for life, resolved to do a lot of the things that I've let slip to the back burner. I'm not going to fall into the daily morass of work, tv, shitty food, and low expectations. I'm going to treat people well, play hard, love passionately, and appreciate what I've been taking for granted.

If he could understand the question, I think he'd say that looking back he has no regrets. I'm resolved to be able to say the same thing when it's my turn.