Blog archives

A collection of all the nonsense I've posted to the internet over the past 21 years of my blog life

  • The alligator in the woods posted - 1 comment

    A few weeks ago, Josh, Jeff, and I went camping at Lake Okoboji. We booked a campsite in a completely unreserved loop on the far edge of a state park. We had the entire area to ourselves, which is always a good idea when our group gets together. The trip was great. Bullshitting... read more

  • Benny the Butthole's Short Life posted - 4 comments

    Last night, around midnight, our dog, Benny became pretty restless. He started moving about the bedroom as if he couldn't get comfortable. This was followed by incessant panting and pacing about the house. He'd had a bit of restlessness the night before, so we didn't think anything of it at first. But it kept up for quite a bit, so I tried to think about what was different that day... read more

  • Forty posted

    I’m 40 now. Almost dead. So, as I approach my final years (RIP), I’ve been reflecting a lot on the past decade and what I want going forward. On my 30th birthday, I moved to Chicago to kick off a new, stressful, and fruitful trajectory in my life and career. In that decade, I took some risks, took advantage of some big opportunities, worked hard, had some big wins, lucked out, and burned out... read more

  • Benny's Juicer posted - 1 comment

    So, Kari subscribes to this weird service that sends her random home/beauty/gym stuff every month. A couple weeks ago her package came with a juicer... but we already have a juicer. So she was gonna give it away. The next day, I found the juicer in Benny’s bed, so I asked Kari if she decided to just give it to the dog instead... read more

  • 2020 - That quarantine life posted - 3 comments

    My goals for 2020 were to: learn how to relax tinker on some smaller car/tech/house projects lose that new fat ride that bike Covid really helped me nail three of those, hah. But with nowhere to go, I didn’t get on the bike nearly as often as I wanted. So first of all, Kari and I were incredibly fortunate to have steady work, income, and a spacious home and yard during this pandemic. I absolutely feel for everyone that had their pay scaled back or eliminated, or were cooped up in apartments or city spaces without being able to fully enjoy their local amenities. The only way that I knew how to stay sane in isolation was to be outside and stay as busy as possible on projects, so I started the pandemic with a lot of yard work and small house projects... read more

  • RIP Garth Brooks posted - 4 comments

    Today, we had to say goodbye to the sweetest, most awkward, and lovable dog that I’ve ever met. Garth was a stray that was picked up in SE Iowa in 2010 and put on doggy death row at a kill shelter. A foster home in Cedar Rapids rescued him and we adopted him soon after. We got the privilege of hanging out with this sweet boy for nearly 11 years. Later in life, Garth started developing lots of tumors, which eventually found their way to his pancreas and caused him to over produce insulin and cut his blood sugar to half of what it’s supposed to be... read more

  • The Jefferson Lake Fiasco posted

    We went on the sketchiest hike today. It was at Jefferson lake, which sits in the mountains between the cabin we're staying at and our friend, Clint and Jacqui’s house. It's a very pretty lake, with no one else around, and what seemed to be a nice, easy trail. A little over 1/3 of the way around the lake, we had a decision to make.. Go all the way around or go back the way we came... read more

  • Two Thousand Nineteen posted

    A few weeks into 2020 and I’m still not sure how I feel about 2019. The entire year felt like remodeling and travel... which turned out to be a lot less chill and a lot less healthy than I had hoped for. House I started small by tiling a window ledge in my office. Then, I remodeled the entire basement (with a little help on the plumbing, flooring, tile, and drywall)... read more

  • Twenty Eighteen. posted - 2 comments

    I really, really want to bring this suuuuper dated website up-to-date, but I've been so focused on things outside of technology that I haven't devoted any time to broox dot com. Let's fix that... at least for one blog post.. and talk about last year. 2018 felt incredibly productive... read more

  • Marv Hardisty posted - 7 comments

    At the end of my senior year of college, I drove out to this country road to make a phone call. There was a spot on the edge of this cornfield that I always went to for important calls (without being interrupted by one of my crazy dorm mates). I was making a call to Marv Hardisty because I'd interviewed for a position on his team a couple weeks prior and wanted to check in. It was for my first potential, big corporate job after college and Marv would've been my boss's boss if I landed the gig. Once Marv got on the phone, the first thing he wanted to talk about was the portfolio of work on my personal website... read more

  • Rilee's Big Walk posted - 1 comment

    So, we're dogsitting Kari's parents' dog, Rilee, right now while they're traveling... and before I go out of town tomorrow, Kari wanted to see if she could walk both dogs at the same time. Our dog is kind of an asshole on the leash, just letting his nose pull him every which way, and Rilee is kind of annoying to walk with as well. She really pulls on the leash and is one of those dogs that violently kicks all 4 feet, tearing up the lawn after every time she pees or poops or whatever. Walking them together was gonna be a chore... read more

  • Sixteen and Seventeen posted

    At the end of the year, I always try to write a little retrospective blog that highlights all the awesome things that happened. It's one of the few times that I actually take the time to write on this weird little site anymore. But, I didn't do that retrospective for one of the seemingly raddest and most successful years of my life: 2016. It took a while, but I eventually realized that despite the rad experiences, I didn't write about 2016 because I was generally unhappy. Over the past couple years, I've been stuck in my head... read more

  • My first trip to Asia posted - 2 comments

    Some weeks ago, my friends Harper, Ivan, Abbie, and I flew to Southeast Asia to meet with a bunch of small companies and do some research for work. It was my first time in Asia, and actually, the furthest east and south that I've ever been. As cliche as it sounds, it really is a-whole-nother world over there. The way they've completely skipped over things that have changed or slowed down innovation in the US was super interesting. The fashion, diets, and everything in Asia is just so different, and in many ways, much better... read more

  • Our trip to Mukul Resort in Nicaragua posted

    As a lot of you know, Kari and I just got back from a pretty rad trip to a resort in Nicaragua... and nearly everyone we've talked to about it asks, "how did you pick Nicaragua?" Well, it kind of started with our friends' Mindy and Ryan's wedding. They had a destination wedding a couple years ago at the Banyan Tree Mayakoba resort in Mexico. Here, we had our own villa that came with it's own pool - devoid of other people's children and ... well devoid of everyone... read more

  • Our Master Bathroom Remodel posted

    So, after having every single room in our house anywhere from 25-95% done for several months, I finally decided to buck up and finish a room... The master bathroom/closet... and I'm gonna tell you all about it. Our goals were pretty simple. Make it bigger, more modern, more accommodating, and more "spa like" - a phrase thrown around wayyyyy too often during the entire process... read more

  • RIP Miller Bracelet posted

    In 2005, I drove to my buddy, Zach's college town to help celebrate his birthday. As soon as I got into town, another one of our buddies (Aaron, aka Turbo) was passing through, so we decided to meet up and grab a drink at a local bar. It was a typical college town bar, complete with deals on Miller Lite, and sponsored Miller girls walking around, handing out terrible college Miller Lite swag. For some reason, when the girls came up to me, they decided I looked like the kind of dude who could really use an Official Miller "Drinking Glove" ... like, wtf even is a drinking glove??.. read more

  • Picking up an M-series in Germany posted - 2 comments

    First of all, some things I noticed about Germans: no one is staring at phones. Everyone rides bikes - mostly cruisers with kickstands and barely locked up. They are big rule followers. They seem to require very little policing and are generally very respectful people. They love super cheesy t-shirts, especially if the F word is on them... read more

  • Leaving Southeast Rio Drive posted

    Seriously, who in the hell puts an offer on a house when they're 22 years old? ... and then stays in that house for the next 11-12 years? Me, apparently. It was a house on Southeast Rio Drive in Suburban, Ankeny, Iowa, that... read more

  • Oh yea... 2015 was awesome posted

    Three weeks into 2016 and I've finally taken a second to think about last year. A year I visited both coasts, sang for a couple thousand people, celebrated 10 years with Kari, sold a company I helped build, and bought a new house. 2015 really was an amazing year. I travelled to Minnesota for beer, California for meetings, Maine for lobster, Boston for fun, Mayakoba for an amazing wedding, Madison for Shenanigans, the wilderness for disconnecting, and of course a dozen trips to Chicago (for both work and play). The big thing, though, which I haven't really talked much about is the sale of our company, Modest... read more

  • Brooks' Dead End Ranch posted - 3 comments

    After 6+ years of wanting to move out of the suburban house that I bought when I was 24 years old, Kari and I finally found a new home to move into. We must've looked at/walked through 100 potential houses or lots (no exaggeration) over the years, but our picky asses could never find one we liked. Our top 3 priorities were pretty simple: a ranch home, within 5 miles of downtown, and garage space for 3+ cars and a workshop. Our other top priorities were: an open floor plan for entertaining, walk out basement, back yard privacy, an office near main living areas, 3 bedrooms, full master bath, full guest bath, a powder room, and to be near bike trails. Our "nice-to-haves" were: something unique and awesome with garage/shed space in the back yard for hanging out, yard space and windows on the south side for gardens, hops, and herbs, a back yard/porch on the north east side for shady afternoons, and a front yard on south west side to melt the driveway in the winter... read more