Archive for the ‘Birmingham’ Category

Here today, gone mandala…

Friday, November 12th, 2010

As some of you know, a group of Buddhist monks spent the last week constructing a sand mandala at the Alys Stevens Center.  The monks worked with just a few grains of sand at a time to create the intricate design.  And this afternoon they needed just a few minutes to destroy it.  the destruction is symbolic of the impermanence of life.  (More pictures from the ceremony in a later edit of this post.)


Beery Birmingham…

Sunday, November 7th, 2010

One of the reasons I love Birmingham.. This is the menu for the J. Clyde beer dinner I’m about to tuck into…


Barons head home…

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

It was announced tonight that the Birmingham Barons will actually be moving to…. Birmingham.  I can’t wait for this move.  I’m not what you would call a rabid baseball fan, but I do enjoy going to games- and it’ll be nice to have them closer to home.  Hoover played hardball to keep the Barons, but a new move to build up the downtown area won out.  It will be interesting to see where Birmingham’s new endeavor takes it, but the city’ efforts to improve downtown have so far been a very positive effort, to me.  I can’t wait for the first pitch.

Update: Mayor Bell says he’s excited about the Barons coming back, but the deal isn’t 100% done.

The I-65 naval shipyard…

Thursday, August 12th, 2010

I’m not sure what it is about boats appearing on the shoulder of I-65. This one showed up earlier this week, and doesn’t seem to want to go away.


Your admin is a major slacker…

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

I’ve been meaning to put this video up for quite some time. It’s a segment done by The Happy Hour Guys a few months ago when they visited my neighborhood pub, J. Clyde. (Of course, your Random Ham admin makes a few appearances.) Too bad the reforms Stuart mentions died in the 2010 legislative session.

Yeah….so that’s not the only thing I’ve slacked on. Seems I have some pics of some PETA folks snogging in 41 degree weather. Still need to get those up, since there’s been a request for them.

Summer showers…

Tuesday, July 6th, 2010

I just found out that Birmingham is helping one segment of its population beat the heat with the ‘Hydrating the Homeless’ program. Taking the city’s history into account, I do hope this doesn’t involve fire hoses.

Joking aside, it sounds like a good program. People can donate bottled water, which police officers will distribute to the homeless.

We’re finally on their radar.

Monday, May 31st, 2010

It seems Groupon has finally decided to add the ‘Ham. Click the little link to check it out.

Overheard at J. Clyde…

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

“It’s really awesome, then they feed you painkillers.” – Braden Pittman

Beer good….beer dinner better!

Monday, May 24th, 2010

A bit late with this post, as I wanted nothing more last night than to pass out and sleep off a good meal. J. Clyde hosted a beer dinner featuring Good People brews. The J. Clyde beer dinners are always good- but this one was even better, as Good People is the local brewery- and one I like very much. The dinner was also a fund raiser for Junior Achievement of Birmingham. It all started off very well, soon as I walked through the door. I had been inside for mere seconds when I was offered a Good People Wild IPA.

I love IPAs, and it was a fabulous warm up. Once the dinner started, we had some good opening words from J. Clyde owner Jerry Hartley, whose mind, heart, and palate always seem to be int he right place. He apologized for not being a good speaker, but he definitely was, and always is.

Jerry hartley

Next up was Good People’s head brewer, Jason Malone. He’s a guy I sometimes find very intense in his focus, but it’s not the sort of intensity that intimidates. But every now and again, he pops out for a bit, cracks a great smile, and says something grand. He’s a great guy, who makes some great beers.

Jason Malone

All of the beer was good- and so was all of the food. But this salad was quite a highlight for a few people there…


When it was all over, we were all stuffed to the gills. J. Clyde staffer James tried to humorously show it, and wound up looking like a creepy old pregnant woman!


I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. If you’ve never been to a J. Clyde beer dinner, you need to get to one!

We had a nice city, and you had to go make it weird!

Sunday, May 23rd, 2010

Bonus points to my friends who know the reference. Some strange folks hit town this weekend- and I mean strange in a good way. Imagicon started Friday, and I finally managed to drop by today. Honestly, I was a bit underwhelmed- but that is MY fault. I went on a Sunday, the last day, so it wasn’t at it’s peak. Also, I was too cheap to actually go in, so I hung out in the lobby of the building, where there weren’t so many people. I didn’t see too much, but there were a few things worth a mention.

First, I found out what’s inside stormtrooper armor! Apparently, it’s ninjas.

Rich, creamy ninja filling!

The star Wars crew are apparently a silly bunch. There was a chamber that is apparently to replicate the feeling of a tornado (or at least, I assumed that’s what it was based on some readouts inside, and the fact it did kick up LOTS of wind…but it was totally unlabeled), and someone thought it might be fun to lock a hapless stormtrooper inside.

Swirling stormtrooper

Then, it was Leia’s turn. She started doing the whole Marilyn Monroe bit, but wound up just showing some leg to the adoring masses.

Leia's leg.

I popped off down the hall a bit, and ran into this guy. I am not into steampunk at all. but I have to admit, his powered wheelchair is pretty cool.

OK, steampunk might actually be cool.

Sci-fi conventions are not just made up of 34 year old guys who live in their mother’s basement. Some of the guys are a little older. Not sure if his mom is still around, though…

That basement floor is really bad for his back...

Coming back to the Star Wars gang, I found my favourite shot of the day. At least you won’t see this guy begging on a street corner…

You won't see him by the side of the interstate...

Next year, I might actually go into Imagicon. Based on the gang I found int he lobby, it looks like a fun bunch. It may not be the biggest or the baddest sci-fi convention, but it’s Birmingham’s sci-fi convention, and that’s a big reason why I like it.