Friday, March 14, 2014

Alex's Precompetition Dinner / A New Camera

 A Drum Duel

Group:  Godsmack

This music is a little dark and ominous...I realize.

Tomorrow morning...
 Alex competes in the State Finals of Mathcounts.

He is hoping to make the State team going to the Nationals in Florida.

Alex seems to be fine.

He says he is excited about tomorrow...and he seems calm.

As for me...
this is the type of music going on in my head right now.

I am nervous about tomorrow!

I feel a little nauseated actually  :)

Alex has been working so hard for this moment.
Alex tries his little heart out, and I naturally want only the best for him.

However, I also realize that all of the competitors must have been doing the same thing.

Tomorrow's battle shall be a very tough one.

The team will be decided by the top four scores in the State of Nevada...
tomorrow morning.

I am always more nervous than he is before his contests  :)

Alex is now sleeping.

I am all amped up...
but, of course, my having had a large iced coffee at dinner 
just might have something to do with it  :)

We went out to the Outback for dinner...
on this...
the eve of the State finals.

I bought a Lumix FZ 200 camera...
and I am still playing around with my new camera's functions.

This was shot in "Happy" mode.

I know...
a little too happy :)

We started with soup and appetizers
(my large iced coffee).

Alex and his mother shared a braised Ahi salad appetizer.

Alex and I each had a full rack of barbequed baby back ribs.
My wife had a Filet Mignon and vegetable skewer.

Alex loves barbecued ribs!

Alex and I had a milkshake for dessert.
Alex had the cappuccino, and I, the strawberry.

They were very rich...
and supremely delicious.

This is how milk shakes should be made!

My wife had taken some shots of me taking photos
(and yes...I had actually boneheadedly put my fingers on the lens  :)

I am, by no means, a talented photographer.

I am a point and shoot kind of guy.

 (these shots of the camera are from the web)

I finally bought a camera for myself.

A Lumix (Panasonic) FZ - 200

It is a bridge camera
(between the point and shoots and the full size DSLRs)

I had bought it as I needed more flexibility in low light and zoom shooting.
I had chosen this one because of the F-stop 2.8 throughout the entire focal range
 (25 - 600 mm).

 Leica lenses are fitted to it as standard.

You will have to excuse me on some of my later photos...
I've yet to become adept at the many features this has.

I will be playing around with some of the settings for a while.

I won't have it on the highest settings...
as most of the shots will be used on the computer...
and this blog.

that is it for now.

I really thought I would feel better after rambling on a bit about the camera.

I am still feeling slightly queasy  :)

I probably won't post the results of the State Finals until tomorrow night.

It starts early in the morning...
 ends in the afternoon...
and afterwards...
we will take Alex out to his favorite Sushi restaurant...
and, I probably won't sleep well tonight...
I will have to sleep after our late lunch.

Any way it turns out tomorrow...
I salute all of the Intellectual Warriors who will be competing 
in the Mathcounts State Finals.

May everyone do their utmost to win a spot on the coveted four person State team...
 going to the Nationals.

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