I update this blog almost every day. It could be about anything: politics & current events, religion, work, geek-related materials. Sometimes I just post random thoughts.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

The "Third Wheel Date" and Mission Impossible III

Last night Christa and I went on a "third wheel" date last night...allow me to explain. Each semester for our hall government in Breese Hall we have an auction, an opportunity for residents of the building to utilize fake incentive money to bid for various prizes. They earn this money by going to meetings, attending programs or helping out within the hall. We are always trying to think of new prizes or new ways to make the auction fun. In consultation with Christa, we thought it would be fun to offer a "third wheel" date as a prize. Some lucky person could join Christa and I for a date. Well, Kristi Meneau was the winner and she (and her boyfriend Gabe...a 4th wheel if you will) went with us for the date.

Dinner was at McDonalds in the Fox River Mall and then we played a few games at Funset Boulevard. Then it was off to the Hollywood Cinema for a 9:30 showing of Mission Impossible III. It was a good action film but I wasn't overwhelmed. It was good to go in with relatively low expectations.

Friday, May 26, 2006


In about a year, I am getting married to Christa Trushinsky (seen to the right here). The prospect of marriage in some ways is a scary thought for me because I did not actually think I would ever get married. I had been in so many relationships (a few pretty serious) and when they ended my hopes of ever getting married got less and less. As I got older, I often felt like I would force my hand when I would start dating someone, as if I would already size up the person I was dating to wonder if I would marry the person. I lost my ability to simply let time tell and see what might happen over time. Luckily, I did not do this for my relationship with Christa. When we started dating, the thought of marriage didn't really enter my mind. I was just glad to hang out with someone who had common interests, was cute :), had a good sense of humor and was really smart (really, really smart)...and she has read hair which is always cool.

Needless to say, one afternoon we were hanging out in my apartment and I looked at here and said, "have you thought about getting engaged?" Well, the ring shopping began and I actually though about marriage but it wasn't forced and it was totally natural. And here we are...Jim is actually getting married; and I am getting married to my best friend.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

The Da Vinci Code

Hehehe...Christa finished with her copy of the Da Vinci Code. Tonight, I will begin reading the controversial book. We'll see what happens...I will keep you posted.

Wow! It is really raining outside today. I have another meeting with a financial planner from Northwestern Mutual Life; hopefully he'll have some good news for me. That is all.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Softball Game #2 Statistics and Commentary

Our second of the season had the same result, but at least we were not defeated as badly. The final score was 24-2. I moved from roving outfielder to first base...a good move. I felt much more comfortable there. Here is the season statistical breakdown:

Droste 3 2 1 0 1 0 2 .500 .333

In last night's game, I drew a walk my first time up to bat. In my second time at bat, I made good connection with the ball but they got the runner out at second base.

It was obvious that we had some improvement between last week and this week. Our fielding still leaves a little to be desires, but what is a little more frustrating is our lack of effective hitting. If we are going to go anywhere, we need to generate some hits in a row.

Unfortunately, I will not be able to play in next week's game. I will be in California for the NACURH 2006 conference. The more I play, the more I am beginning to enjoy softball. I have really appreciated Christa's willingness (and great patience :) ) in helping me with my throwing and catching. I have noticed steady improvement in my abilities and I am looking forward to continuing to get better. Stay tuned for further game statistics.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


I feel as though much of this semester had been putting back together a lot of stuff that I managed to let go over the last few months. I finally got back into playing on-line Scrabble. Peter Brooks was the man that introduced this to me two summers ago while we were doing some summer work for the Department of Residence Life. We don't really play anymore, but I did my mom addicted to the game and now she and I are starting to play again. We used to go through a game a week through E-mail. Utilizing a message board on the website, I have managed to start games with people around the world.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Go Pride of the Valley Chorus!

On Saturday, May 20, 2006 Christa and I went to the UW Manitowoc campus to see the Packerland Regional Barbershop chorus and quartet competition. The Pride of the Valley Chorus, who I have only sang with a few times but really want to join, ended up performing wonderfully and won multiple awards: Most Improved Chorus, Plateau A Champs...and Packerland Division Champs. They will be moving on to the District Competition, which could qaulify them for the Intermational Competition.

I am hoping to audition quickly so that I might be able to help in their district performance.

Friday, May 19, 2006


I had a meeting with a financial planner yesterday who said that a life insurance policy that I took out through a local financial planner earlier this year was a poor investment; he also could not understand why anyone would take out a policy like this. He suggested stopping the policy, but I may be out of the money that I invested...it would be a significant amount of money. I am a little peeved about all this, but there is not much I can do. Hopefully this new financial planner can see what can be salvaged. Grr...

Thursday, May 18, 2006

AD&D Once More

I think I may have rustled up enough people to get a 1st Edition Advanced Dungeons and Dragons group together...it has been a long time. Lest I get any dorkier, I will just leave it at that. I am pretty excited.
I was chatting with one of my staff members yesterday and I mentioned that I put my softball stats on my blog. He asked, "Does anyone actually read your blog?" I responded, "A few, but I don't care if anyone read it." The blog is mostly for me and if people have something to say, I encourage them to say something.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Softball Game Statistics and Commentary

Last night, I participated in my first game as a member of the Kelly's IV (see schedule) softball team. My line from last night:

Droste 2 1 1 0 0 0 1 .500

Droste (2, fielding)

You wouldn't see in the stat column that I also had a nice grab in the first inning. I managed to catch a ball on the run. I also caught a nice pop fly in the third inning as well. I will do my best to keep running stats for the entire season.

Overall, I felt really good about the game. I was most excited about the solid connection that I made both times at the plate. I had a solid single to start with (I even got some batting advice from the opponent's second basemen would told to me to take a base on an error :)...) and the sceond time at bast I hit a ball that was caught by someone who needed to slide to get to it.

Fielding went OK...I had a few errors, but in my defense it was a little slippery. The biggest concern was throwing. Christa was nice enough to help me with throwing and catching the afternoon before the game. For some reason, right before the game I lost all ability to throw the ball. I felt sorry for John Cavey...the ball was all over the place. Then my teammates tried to help me and that only made it worse. So, Christa will continue working with me to get that better.

We did lose 32-3 which was brutal. We need some help with fielding. Hopefullly some practice will help in this area.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

First Softball Game & Express Checkout

Tonight is my first softball game with the 2nd floor Breese team (sponsored by Kelly's Bar). I have already gotten two reminders to go to the game...no fears, I will be there. I haven't played a real competitve game of softball in a long time, probably high school. I do not doubt my skills with a bat; I am more worried about my ability to catch and I am really worried about my ability to throw. I think that could be very ugly.

It was interesting handing in my paperwork for Express Checkout yesterday. No fanfare, no worries...it went in and it got processed. We all move on. Done.

Monday, May 15, 2006


Yesterday, I hung out with my little brother because Friday was a little busy with closing stuff. Christa had some coupons for free bowling at Oshkosh Lanes. We decided to play three games. So, I failed to remember that when Adam was in grade school, he was in a bowling league...yeah, he is really good. After a slow start, he beats me 155-139. In the next game I get 145, but gets a 160. In the last game I avoided a sweep and got a 154 to his 125. It was great to have such stiff comepetition because it drove up my level of concentration; I managed to get better with each game that I played.

Sadly, I don't bowl too often any more. I would say it comes out to around 3-4 times a year. When I was in graduate school, I would honestly bowl 3-4 times a week! At Western Illinois University, they have top-notch facilities for bowling. Their bowling team has won the NCAA national championship 3 out of the last 4 years. And, the bowling in the Union is really cheap, like $1.50 a game. I also had a good friend, Jenn Eral who also was really interested in bowling. So, I got to be really good...well, good for not taking lessons and doing anything the pros do. I could usually average around 130-140 by the 2nd year of graduate school.

I guess this entry is my way of saying that I would like to get into bowling again. I really do miss it. Perhaps I can sneak into a league or allocate the money to go bowling at least once a week. I really would like to take lessons, but that may not happen for awhile.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Closing and Other News

The weather continues to be cold and rainy, not the combination you would like to see on the day when students move out of the residence halls. So far, it hasn't seemed to curtail them; I see parents and students gathering their things and making the journey home. This Express Check-Out system that we run is nice for the students, but it makes it more difficult to get the chance to say goodbye to your residents. I get their key packet and then we know that they are gone. Luckily a few residents have taken the chance to give a firm handshake or (thanks Tom) and groundlifting hug :).

Last night, I finally had the chance to return to the "Pride of the Valley" chorus in Appleton. This barbership group is really good. This was the first time where I was finally able to stay for the whole rehearsal. They are competing in a regional competition with other courses in the general northeastern Wisconsin area. They only have a few more rehearsals left and I am sure they will do well. It is my intention to join after the competition so that I can commit for the summer and make it a habit in the fall.

That is all, when next you hear from me, my hall will be at about 30% capacity.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Weather & Such

I would like to start out by saying that today's weather is really cruddy. I can do without the cold temperatues and high winds. I got ready to go for a walk this morning, took one look out the window and gave up. I can even take a little rain, but the wind and cold temperatures make exercise completely undesirable. I'm not sure if it is going to get any better this afternoon or evening.

I am currently listening to my 1,146 songs that are tagged as "soundtracks". For some reason, that seems to fit my mood today. I am trying to wrap up a few last remaining conduct cases and get ready for Express Checkout. One way or another, they are coming.

Tomorrow is our staff cookout in between waves of Express Checkouts. This will really be the last time that we will have to hang out as a staff and wrap-up the year. I am really sad to see this group break up. They have been a lot of fun.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006


Earlier this semester, I got an E-mail from a James Droste. James is my cousin. My dad had one brother, named Jim. Jim had a son named James. (way too many James/Jim people here) After sending an E-mail once and having it not get through, I tried again and he responded.

As someone who is now an only child and has no living grandparents, the thought of re-uniting with a cousin is an exciting venture for me. We are trading E-mails to catch up; hopefully, in the near future, we will be able to meet.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Can't Complain

Coming from me this is a pretty big deal. Honestly, things are going very well. There's a light drizzle outside and I am enjoying the soothing sounds of George Winston. I am ready for checkout and the EOY task list is being completed slowly but surely.

Christa and I are doing very well. We have begun the rough plans for our wedding which has been set for June 16, 2007. I was touched recently when she referred to me as her best friend on her facebook profile. I obviously feel the same way, but I have also never been in a relationship where I considered that person truly my best friend. I realize how lucky I am to have her in my life and I realize what an important role she plays in my life. June 16, 2007 can't come soon enough.

I have a better sense of what may happen for me after I am done being a hall director (and after Christa graduates). I will be attending the Explorations conference in November of this year to explore the possibility of entering the ministry. I won't go into details, but I will be reflecting about this opportunity in my other blog. It feels good to have some direction.

I also feel healthy in the last few weeks than I have felt in awhile. Sadly, when I jumped on the scale a month ago and saw that I was 204 pounds, I realized that something had to change. I resolved earlier this year that I would never let myself get over 200 pounds again...oops. *sigh*

So, I am now 198 pounds and continue to walk every morning and in the afternoon I either walk, bike or run. I am trying to eat better, or more importantly eat less. It has worked so far and with the weather getting better and with more free time on the way, I am excited to keep this going.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Poker Video Game

I rented a poker video game, and I got really sucked into it last night. They have a career mode, so the poker career of Jim Droste began last night. I played in four tournaments and did reasonably well in two of them. In two tournaments of appoximately 1,200 people, I placed 76th and 24th. These tournaments are not on-line, they are simluated by the computer. The tournament I placed 24th in, Christa gave me some good consulting...at one point I was as low at $1,200 and at one point I was as high as $130,000.

I try to find ways I can play poker, but not gamble with money. This seems to work pretty well :).

Some Recognition

I want to give a shout out to Breese Hall who won some serious hardware at the 2005-2006 USRH/Residence Life Banquet:

Margaret LaBorde - Community Advisor of the Year
Breese Hall - Community Service Hall of the Year (2nd year in a row)
Breese Hall - Hall of the Year (3rd year in a row)

This is a testament to the hard work that the staff, hall leaders and residents do in Breese Hall every day; it truly makes Breese Hall a great community!

Excellent work!!

Friday, May 05, 2006


This is just one of those weeks were I am just glad that it will be done soon. Unfortunately, this weekend will be pretty busy as well...then begins the home stretch that is Final's Week.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Da Vinci Code

Interesting article about a boycott of The Da Vinci Code movie.

Seriously, let's think about this.

The Da Vinci Code is a work of fiction! Do you honestly think people will read this book and be turned off to Christianity?

Game Show Reunion & The Bucks

We anticipated a Tournament of Champions invite for Cube-Itz and we received it. We were on Cube-Itz for the fourth time, and yes, we won the game for the fourth time as well. It wasn't really close; we were tied after round one but we had a complete round two domination. With each passing game, I felt like a large contributor. I was a little disappointed by the prize this time...we get a free sundae. Woot...

The Bucks got thumped last night, so my hopes for a close series against the Pistons is now over. And we have a month of NBA playoffs left to go. Yeesh.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006


Still no takers on the 8:05 a.m. walks Monday-Friday. I would be really excited if someone showed up to get a brisk walk early in the morning. These will continue until the halls close on June 2.

The halls close next Friday. So, I am telling you now that I am probably going to hard to find over the next two weeks. I am apologizing in advance for phone calls that may go unreturned; I am doing my best :).

Why is that the foolish actions of a few students challenge my thoughts about the other 99.5% percent of students in my hall?

Why do college students love pizza so much? Do we help this problem by constantly offerring pizza parties in the hall?

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

100 posts

I actually have a blog and I am sticking to it. Here's to 100 posts!

Otherwise, not much new to add. Go me...

Monday, May 01, 2006

Wisconsin Sports High Point

Not much of note to talk about today. However, I have agood feeling from the Wisconsin sports scene:
  1. The Green Packers drafted reasonably well, filled some holes and signed Ron Woodson. At least the team will be somewhat improved for next year.
  2. The Milwaukee Bucks has a convincing victory over the Piston in game 3 of their playoff series.
  3. The Bucks sweep the Braves and takes 2 of 3 from the Cubs, winning two of those games, 16-2 & 9-0.
It won't last, but it's still a good time to be a Wisconsin sports fan.