Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Mustaches vs. Cancer

Ladies and Gentlemen- to the absolute repulsion of my wife, I have endeavored upon a great mission. What mission you ask? A mission to grow the meaty-est mustache any of you have ever seen.
I know what you are thinking..."Why, Tom Selleck, what are you up too?"
Some people run races or marathons, some compete in triathlons, some come back after retirement and finish 3rd in the Tour de France...all in the name of raising awareness and money for the research of a cure for cancer.
I have taken up a much less athletically demanding crusade for trying to raise money for cancer research. I simply signed up at and vowed to grow a sweet stache to help raise money to aid childhood cancer research because, as they say, "kids can't grow mustaches, and they shouldn't have cancer either."
So, the benefits of this event are two-fold, I get to increase my rugged handsomeness and (more importantly) raise money for this great cause. The second part of the two-fold equation is where you come in.
I hope that those of you who read our blog would do me a favor and swing by and drop a few dollars into my collection (you can type my name into the search function or just look for 'Sir Stachalot'). All the money goes to the charity and you get to watch my mustache progression with weekly photo updates on the website. As long as I receive $10 in collections each week, I promised to keep the mustache. So as long as you guys promise to keep putting a few dollars in...I can promise you a shockingly hairy upper lip...that, as a Keller, I can guarantee. The event kicked off on Monday, October 5th, with all entrants clean shaven and then ends November 25th...that is when Shea will be seen with me in public again.
So...after you check out the website and put some money in the collection...feel free to ridicule your hairy lipped friend here- My mustache promised to defend me from all negativity.
(November final product pictured above)

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Oktoberfest Munchin 2009

For my 33rd birthday this year Shea treated me to a trip to Oktoberfest...yep- "the" Oktoberfest filled with lederhosen, women in dirndls, and big beers...what a cool gift.
Now, if I could only remember it.
We left Frankfurt on Saturday, Sept. 26th, on a train at about 10am and arrived into Munich at 1pm. As soon as you step off the train you are surrounded by people dressed in the traditional garb. The Oktoberfest grounds are just a 10 minute walk south of the main train station in Munich and our hotel was situated directly between them to say we were in the middle of the mayhem would be absolutely appropriate.
We checked in and immediately changed clothes..."into what" you may ask...that would be my lederhosen and Shea into her dirndl! Yep, we were all decked out!
We headed over to the Oktoberfest grounds and were impressed by the size and number of people there. The best way to describe it is to equate it to the State Fair of Texas, but instead of having the fair halls filled with the baking competition winners, hand sewn prairie skirts, and next years line of Chevy's...fill them with tens of thousands of beer drinkers looking for a party. Unbelievable.
We walked around to get a lay of the land, and unfortunately by the time we got there in the afternoon, the beer tents are packed full and security won't let any new revilers in. That simply meant that partying inside a beer tent would have to wait till tomorrow and today we would have to party at one of the outdoor beer gardens.
Looking the part, security assumed we were locals and quickly allowed us into one of the Hippodrom beer gardens. We sat at a large table with a collection of Bavarians who we shared the evening with drinking beer, eating, and having a great time. They were super nice and gave us all the insider scoop on how best to enjoy the festivities. Now, Oktoberfest starts everyday at 10 am and then ends each night at 10:30. We didn't want to ruin ourselves for Sunday so we called it a night about 9 and went and got some dinner. We headed back to the hotel room and could hear the party leaving for the next several hours...people were having a good time.
We had been told by our new Bavarian Oktoberfest friends that we wouldn't need to worry about getting to Oktoberfest super early on Sunday to get in a tent. Usually, people start lining up by 8 to get in the tents on the other days. We followed their advice and got to the festival site a little after 10:00. We were able to walk around and duck in all the beer tents and get a few pics of them and decide on which one we wanted to try first.
When we stepped in the Hofbrauhaus tent at 10:30, it was packed and there were already people dancing on the tables and singing. Decision was made for where we would hang out first. We found a table, made quick friends with our table mates, and ordered our first round of giant beers (1 liter each).
At noon, we were already into our second beer and had eaten a roasted chicken for lunch. All us Oktoberfest-ians were ready and in marched the band which started the next 10 hours of ever-repeating German drinking songs. We finished our second beers and decided we wanted to go ride some of the rides and see some of the areas we hadn't been able to see yet.
We rode a huge ferris wheel which offered great views of the festival and of Munchin. We then slid on the giant slide and ate some dessert. After that, we said enough of the rides it's time to get back to business.
We headed into Augustiner beer tent and sat down at a table. Our table mates this time included 3 guys from Holland who were hilarious and made for great comedy over the next several beers. We had our own party going on that included our table and all the ones surrounding us. Great fun!
We had to leave at 8 to walk back to the train station to catch our train back to Frankfurt. We made it in time and fell asleep for our 3 hour trip home.
It was a great time and a wonderful birthday and we hope to get to go again some day.