2012 in review: 2013 can’t get here fast enough

31 12 2012

2012. It’s over. Thank goodness.

I’d rather forget a lot of what happened this year. Lots of dead ends and roadblocks as far as the career. Still dealing with high cholesterol. Working too hard for too little money and missing quality time with loved ones.

But no living in regret. Only moving forward and trying to be positive. It really wasn’t all bad.

This was the year that my first child was conceived. The baby will be here at the end of February or early March, if it goes to term!

This was the year I saw my first Las Vegas superfight(s) in person. It was also the year I watched my Oregon Ducks finally win a Rose Bowl, standing in one end zone on the moist grass of the stadium in Pasadena watching the clock run out on Wisconsin. I lost my great aunt Agnes Romero earlier that New Years Day. It was bittersweet.

I taught/advised for two classes at Arizona State in 2012. Enjoyed both. Working with students was very rewarding. And I always make it a good time.

I traveled to El Paso, Texas, for the first time ever. I could have thrown a rock into Mexico in two places where I was.

2012 took me back to Washington D.C. for work, but also allowed for the chance to see friends and family.

In September I rode a hot air balloon for the first time. Probably the last, too, but I can say I did it and what majestic views I had from the air over the Valley of the Sun.

Over the Valley of the Sun in a balloon.

Over the Valley of the Sun in a balloon.

In the basket up high in the sky.

In the basket up high in the sky.

The view from above Cave Creek, AZ.

The view from above Cave Creek, AZ.


I went to a NASCAR race for the first time. It was actually more entertaining in person than on TV.

My wife really did a lot for us this year. All that and carrying a baby for months.

The year ended, strangely, so similar to how it began. With the Oregon football team. From Pasadena on Jan. 1 to Scottsdale for Fiesta Bowl media day.

2013 will bring major changes thanks to Baby Romero. But they will be welcome changes. It’s definitely time for something different. For my own family being my biggest reason for living.

Wishing a Happy New Year to everyone, and God bless. PS Thanks Mayans for… well whatever. The world didn’t end so I get to see my child grow up!


Passing (time in) the Old El Paso

1 06 2012

Not sure if I have ever tried Old El Paso salsa but I remember those old TV commercials about “tasting the old Southwest.”  Guess that means I’m getting older.

Well, I finally went to the real El Paso earlier this month. The vast majority of my 5.5 days in the West Texas town were spent at the Dow Jones Multimedia Training Academy, getting out of my comfort zone of writing and learning about other forms of storytelling — audio, video, slideshows. There was a lot to learn.

A very good experience and this was the final project I helped create. Had a good team to work with and everyone in the program was very nice. I was also able to get out and see a few things.

Day 1: The Sun Bowl and the Don Haskins Center on the University of Texas at El Paso campus.

Don Haskins coached Texas Western, now UTEP, to the NCAA title and made history in the process. Look it up.

At night I went to a baseball game in town.

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They did it!

4 01 2012

Jan. 2, 2012 was a great day to be an Oregon Duck. They won a Rose Bowl for the first time in 95 years with a 45-38 win over Wisconsin.

I was able to get down on the field for the last four minutes of the game, right after the fumble by Wisconsin that gave the Ducks the ball.

As the seconds ticked off, being impartial with my press credential and trying not to root openly for the school from where my entire family either studied or received bachelors degrees, in the city where I was born, was incredibly difficult.

I’d been to three previous Oregon Bowl games, including two Rose Bowls, and the Ducks had lost them all. Finally, on Jan. 2, they won a big one. The Granddaddy of Them All.

The gameday staff was very helpful and hospitable. The press box was fantastic and there was so much food. Seeing the game from there was wayyyy better than from the stands from a comfort standpoint, only thing was, no cheering. Small price to pay, beyond happy to be there.

Here’s what it looked like right after the officials called the game over. Watch the end when Puddles the Duck goes crazy.

More from down on the field:

I took a number of photos. See below for a few:

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My year in review, adios 2011

30 12 2011

Another great year in “mi vida deportiva,” but not just in my life of sports, but life in general. I’ll skip the worst of the year and focus on the best moments. Because I can.

Year 2 in Arizona is coming to a close, but it began with the BCS national championship game here in Glendale, and I was fortunate enough to cover it. Even though my beloved Oregon Ducks lost, I was pretty proud of their effort and I can say that I was there. 

Later in January 2011 I took my first trip to the new Matthew Knight Arena in Eugene, Ore., new home for Oregon basketball. Awesome place. I’ll always cherish old McArthur Court though.

In February my wife bought me an I-phone for Valentine’s Day. She keeps wanting me to say that the device has made my life better and easier, so I’ll say it: she’s right. It’s not perfect but it’s pretty sweet.

February and March were spent covering Major League Soccer training and baseball spring training. I was very busy, needless to say.

After celebrating the end of spring training with dinner at Morton’s — ooh, swanky! — baseball season began. I went home to Portland in April for my birthday and attended the inaugural Portland Timbers match at Jeld-Wen Field. It poured rain all night, but I was under the overhang and stayed dry and the Timbers thrilled the sellout crowd with the win.

Later in April I went to the two Phoenix Coyotes NHL playoff games against Detroit. The Coyotes got dominated but the atmosphere in Jobing.com Arena was fun. It’s cool to have an NHL team right in my own back yard.

At the end of the month I took my wife to see my favorite rap artist ever, DJ Quik. And we met Mr. Blake in person! Great night.

Then, it was off to see the world. Read the rest of this entry »

Four reasons to love Tucson

27 09 2011

The Romeros went to Tucson this past Saturday to see my Oregon Ducks play the Arizona Wildcats.

My team won 56-31. We sat up high in an Oregon section and had a blast watching the Ducks score seven touchdowns. I say seven because we missed the eighth, leaving early in the fourth quarter because it was late and it was a long drive back to Phoenix.

Certainly we weren’t leaving if it was a close game, but this was blowout city from the start.


That was one reason to like Tucson. Reason 2: Last time I saw the Ducks in Tucson, they won then, too.

Go Ducks!

I really have to give Stephanie a lot of credit. She went with me all the way to a place she clearly does not care for, as an Arizona State fan, and she was a good sport supporting me supporting my college. She even wore an Oregon shirt.

Reason 3: Love eating at Mi Nidito Mexican Restaurant.

Reason 4: The murals of Cesar Chavez and farmworkers on the freeway overpass bridge at the 4th Ave. exit off the 10 freeway.

Writers write, and I did a lot of it this week

17 09 2011

Can’t stress the title of this post enough. If writing is what you do and what you like, you do it as often as you can. So I write during a lot of whatever spare time I find when not editing or teaching.

Allow me to share with you a look back on my week of writing.

On Monday it was Arizona State football. QB Brock Osweiler is fantastic with the media. Read about his roommate on the road in this early preview of the ASU-Illinois game. 

Wednesday, my short story about Vancouver Whitecaps defender Jordan Harvey appeared on Soccer by Ives. He looks exactly like former Portland Trailblazers center Joel Przybilla. Here’s what Joel looks like:

Thursday I got kind of fired up about the Dodgers-Diamondbacks, Clayton Kershaw-Gerardo Parra flap. So I took this view for SB Nation Arizona. 

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Many reasons to like September

31 08 2011

As we bow out of August and roll into September, why not start this with an Earth Wind and Fire classic?

I like September because it reminds me of the first signs of autumn, except where I live the leaves don’t change colors or fall off, but at least I have that memory from being in the Pacific Northwest.

I like September because college and pro football are getting started.

I like September because baseball playoff races get exciting.

I like September because of Labor Day, even if I haven’t had one off for a while. Someone’s cooking somewhere, and I’m eating!

I like September because there’s usually a big boxing event in Vegas every year in the month. This year it’s Floyd Mayweather-Victor Ortiz. I hope Ortiz flattens Pretty Boy Floyd and shuts his ever-yapping mouth. Time for him to be humbled.

Speaking of boxing, did you see what Oscar de la Hoya revealed?  Wow. I’m not surprised about the marital infidelity, but the drugs and alcohol were shocking to me. Always had a lot of respect for Oscar and I hope he gets help for his issues. He made bad choices but he’s human and America loves a comeback, right, Michael Vick/Plaxico Burress fans?

I like September because it’s my sister’s birth month. But I miss being around more often for her celebrations. Sorry, Shelli.

I like September because soccer in the U.S. is heading down the stretch, and just getting going around most of the rest of the world.

Hope everyone had a good August — mine was very busy — and wishing you all a happy September.