Archive for November, 2011

Thanksgiving Dinner

We decided to do a low-impact meal and did an eleven o’clock dinner at the Snoqualmie Casino buffet.  I really enjoy these kinds of things. I love grazing with so many choices.  I ended up sampling turkey, dressing, ham, scalloped potatoes, green beans, carrots, mac and cheese, crab legs and even a little slice of pizza.

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Ugly Front Page

Yikes! Today’s advertisement-laden Seattle Times weighed something like five pounds.  A real monstrosity.  Even worse though, is the home page of the Times online edition.  Is this one of the ugliest things you’ve ever seen?

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The Delusional Mr. Ballmer

I don’t work at Microsoft any longer and I dumped the last of my MSFT stock earlier this year.  And I feel good about it especially after reading the description of the latest shareholders’ meeting.  Mr. Ballmer reprised his past performances, telling everyone what a great year the company had and how rosy the future is, emphasizing –get this–: “We are in the Windows era. We were, we are and we always will be.”  How’s that for thinking outside the box?  He’s saying effectively, “You know that stuff we did in 1981?  It was great and that’s all we’re ever going to do.”

I’m stunned how a CEO and corporate board can have so little regard for the shareholders.  They absolutely don’t care that MSFT stock price has been flat for a decade and seem to think it’s unreasonable for shareholders to ask for a better ROI than zero.

MSFT 10-Year Stock Price Graph

MSFT ended the day yesterday at $26.74.  Ten years ago, Nov. 16 2001, it closed at $32.88.  By comparison, McDonalds, another mature company with a pretty basic product line has managed to raise its share price from $28.01 to $94.47 while paying out a 2.5% dividend.

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Final Handicap Number for the Year

I ended the year with a handicap index of 13.3, one-half stroke better than last year’s final number and one stroke above my low for the year of 12.3 on September 1st.  This very much mirrors my scoring pattern of last year but I have been maintaining a lower scoring average through the end of the year better than in my earlier golfing years of  2005-08. I’m sure getting much below 12.0 is going to be very difficult.

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Eek! First snow of the year

We had some sleet over the weekend but this afternoon we have a little dusting of real snow.  I guess I’m just as happy for winter to get here and get it over with so we can get back to yard work and golf as soon as possible.

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Under 80 Again!

I’ve always liked fall golf but my scores have not usually been all that good once the leaves begin to cover the edges of the fairways.  Things have been a bit different this year, though.  This morning I shot a ho-hum seven over par 79 at Mt. Si, my second sub-80 round in two weeks.  It was an unspectacular but very steady round.  No long drives, no long putts or chip ins.  Just eleven pars and seven bogeys.  The short game carried the day for me.  I hit just one green in regulation and two fairways over the last eleven holes but knocked enough chip shots close to  get by with just 13 putts over that stretch.  I’m looking forward to seeing where my handicap ends up with next week’s final update for the year.

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Fall in North Bend

It’s been clear since we returned from our California/Arizona trip that it’s fall.  There’s no escaping the early sunsets, persistent gray skies and cool, drizzly days.  But we also get scenes like this: a delightfully cool afternoon with bands of sun, clouds and rain showers that occasionally paint a lovely rainbow over the mountains.

Our front yard

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