Thursday, October 28, 2010

With the Top Let Back and the Sunshine Shining

I don't buy clothes very often, so I was as surprised as anyone when I recently bought 4 shirts within 2 weeks.  All of them were on clearance so I ended up with good deals.  The problem I realized when I got home was that 3 of the 4 shirts are distinctly Western-style shirts - somewhat similar to the one in this photo.

This got me thinking that maybe I am going through some kind of subconscious mid-life crisis where, on some level, I want to be a cowboy.

*sigh*  Getting older kinda sucks.


Monday, October 25, 2010

Shaking Fists

My supervisor at work up and quit on a recent Monday morning.  I figured he was out sick that day which is odd because at the time, I was sick and had gotten back from a weekend in Vegas.  I was feeling a little run down but decided if I was going to take a sick day, I better really be sick.

Tuesday rolled around and still no supervisor, and that's when I found out he was gone.  I guess he just sent an email to the big boss and said he wasn't coming in anymore and that he was moving.  It's been a range of emotions since he left.  We weren't exactly buddies but we got along fine.  So, a part of me is really annoyed at the manner in which he left -- maybe it really was a spur of the moment decision and there was no time to prepare.  There is a ton of work left for me and my coworker to do in his absence so I've been forced into a very stressful situation.  I've put in a lot of overtime and meanwhile, still have to find time/energy to concentrate on finishing up my Master's program.

For the first week without him around, I think we did pretty well.  Monday and Tuesday sucked, Wednesday really sucked, and Thursday was just completely FUBAR.  By the time Friday came around, my coworker and I were caught up on things and *gasp!* getting ahead for the following week. The supervisor did a ton of shit -- a lot of which he never taught anyone so we're having to figure a lot of things out.

A part of me is a little relieved the supervisor is gone.  Sometimes our work relationship was frustrating but it's just work - who cares.  Now that he's gone there isn't a chance for that tension, and realistically, the only way for me to move up was for him to be gone.  So instead of being a small little cog in the work machine, I have a much bigger role in things.  A lot of people in my department depended on the supervisor but I think with the work load more properly balanced, we'll all be just fine.

I think I'm mostly annoyed by the manner in which he left.  I sent him a personal email after we found out he was gone and never got a response.  I guess his preferred method of leaving is just to burn every bridge in sight.  I would have at least appreciated a "Hey, sorry but there was no other choice.  It was nice working with you."

Friday, October 22, 2010


We went to Las Vegas recently for a friend's wedding renewal. The trip ended up being a lot of fun and a lot of frustration. The Wife and I drove out with two friends, leaving around 7-ish and getting into the hotel just past midnight. I was coming off of a cold so, sadly, I stayed in the hotel Friday night. It's just as well because everyone left at 2am and came home at 6. I struggled to sleep so maybe I should have just gone out anyway.

On Saturday, it started sprinkling when we were walking around Freemont Street which then turned into a full on downpour. None of us were prepared for rain so we did our best to stay dry but still ended up pretty soaked by the time we got back to the car. It was actually kind of refreshing as my cold felt a lot better after the rain. The Wife teased me and said maybe all I needed to do was take a shower.

Favorite story of the weekend - Vegas newbie Scott and I sat down at a blackjack table around 1 in the morning on Saturday night. It was $5 minimum and we both were doing okay. This douchebag tool walks by with his lady, who prompts him to sit down and play. He said he didn't want to sit because "there wasn't a lot of money on the table." I don't know if it's because Scott and I were doing just okay or if it was because there was only the two of us. Two other dudes joined us a little later, and then the Douchebag Tool made his triumphant return, sat down next to me and got $100 in chips.

First hand up, he bet $25 and got beat by the dealer's hand. He mutters "Fuck" and bet $25 on the second hand. Second hand - he busted and lets out an audible "Un-fucking-believable!" So he's down to $50 which he then bets on all the third hand to make up for his losses. The cards come out and sure enough, he busts again. He let out another "Un-fucking-believable!" and stormed away from the table. I was giddy because...well, that was awesome. I also won all three hands he was there for, as I think the other guys did at our table.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


I've started doing this thing lately - against my own will and better judgement.  There have been a couple of times when I know I have done something but then I'll sit there later and wonder, "Did I do that?"

Example: I took the Wife's car to get dinner a few weeks ago, got home, ate and enjoyed the rest of our evening.  As we're laying there in bed, I'm thinking to myself, "Did I put up all of the windows on her car?"  Her car has 4 doors/windows, while mine only has 2.  I lay there and think further to myself - I had to have put them up.  I would have noticed if they weren't when I got out of the car, right?  Right?!??!  Well, I still didn't know so I had to explain to The Wife why I was getting out of bed at 10:30 to go check and for the record -- the windows were up.

Another example - I was making lunch for work one morning.  Everything was packed and I left to go into work.  I was about 10 minutes away on the freeway and thought to myself, "Did I put the food away or did I leave it sitting out on the counter?"  I was pretty sure I put it away but I also thought to myself, "If I get off the freeway right now, drive back and take a look, I'll just barely be late to work."  As I struggled with this internal dilemma while continuing to drive farther away, I decided to just trust my instincts that I had put the food away (which I indeed did).  Normally, it might not be a big deal but we've had 2 invasions of ants since we moved in.

*sigh*  It is SO annoying to be 99.9% sure you've done something but not be 100% sure.  I'm trying to trust my instincts since I am a pretty responsible person overall but sometimes I think I may just be going insane.

Saturday, October 16, 2010


We watched the movie Cashback recently and I have to recommend it. I came across it while obsessing over movies involving time travel and/or freezing of time. Cashback is a British movie which started out as a short film, then expanded into a feature length which incorporated most of the short film seemlessly back into it.

It's about an artist named Ben who develops insomnia after his girlfriend dumps him. He takes a night shift job at a grocery store where his boredom forces imagination to run wild. He imagines time standing still and soon, he (seemingly) develops the ability to stop time at will. He develops a crush on his coworker, has some hijinks with his coworkers and boss and struggles to get past his insomnia.

I expected it to be artsy-fartsy, but it was sincere and actually quite funny. The Wife and I both ended up loving this film so kindly check it out, won't you?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

A Blog Down Memory Lane

Wow.  First off, let me say I'm a fan of the Internet Archive Wayback Machine.  It's a site that archives (or attempts to archive) websites.  I don't know how they do it, but I'm thankful because it's fun to look at band websites when they were promoting older albums.  Some bands I still love have broken up and don't have a website so it's neat to jog my memory and remember those days.

So I went on the IAWM and typed in an old old blog address I had and it had archived three pages of it.  Wow, three pages!  I went back and read them and it was pretty trippy.  Talking about my first job a LOT of detail, most of which would probably be frowned on these days, if not get me fired.  Talking about love interests, concerts I was going to, movies I had seen, stuff that I'd done with my was just so weird to read old old blog posts.  It almost feels like I'm reading about a different person...which in a sense, I guess I was back then.

And no, I'm not going to give out the old old blog address so you can look it up.  The past is best left in the past.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Music Stores

I guess I didn't really talk about it much, but I took The Wife up to Santa Barbara for our one year anniversary last month.  It was very nice.  Santa Barbara is just far enough away that it feels like you're getting out of town but close enough that it's only an hour (or so) away.

One of the fun things we did was stop in a record store on State Street.  It was a little small but had a lot of product in their space. I told The Wife that I had forgotten how much fun it is to go to a record store, so we ended up going back the next day so I could look for more things. I don't buy nearly as much music as I used to but there is something really fun about looking through used CDs and discovering things you've never seen before or forgotten about. I ended up buying Encomium because it's not on iTunes or Amazon MP3.

I guess it's easier to shop for music digitally what with the comfort and the instant sound samples of everything. The music selection at Best Buy is fairly sad these days, too. For someone that's something of a music collector, I really enjoy digging through bins and finding rare import CDs and singles. It's been probably a good two years since I went to Amoeba Music, but we'll have to get down there sometime.

Thursday, October 7, 2010


In my 30-something years of living in southern California, I've encountered on many occasions what I would refer to as Valley Snobs or L.A. Snobs. These are people who live in the surrounding counties of Los Angeles (Orange, Riverside and especially Ventura) who deride Los Angeles as having no class or being too crowded...or simply believing Los Angeles / the Valley have nothing valuable to offer.

As someone who grew from a fetus to a bodybuilder in the Valley, I will gladly call bullshit on that every day of the week. Go check out the awesome antique store on Sherman Way in Canoga Park and you'll find see amazing things. Try to find more than one (if you can find any) good Filipino restaurant in Ventura county. Go see an improv show at UCB and tell me you can find anything funnier for the same price (average $5 fee).

Understandably, there are some bad aspects to both the Valley and Los Angeles but you can say the same thing about any town.  The Valley and Los Angeles both have so much to offer.  It's incredibly frustrating when I hear about The Wife's or my coworkers who dread going "over the hill" into Los Angeles.  Come out and find some good things - they're waiting.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Aunt May Must Die!

I read up on recent storylines taking place in the Spider-Man comics. I'll do my best to capsize it down so the non-comic book reader (all but one of you) can follow along -- Spider-Man was convinced to reveal his secret identity to the public -- Peter Parker. Peter moves his wife Mary Jane, and his Aunt May into hiding but an assassin spots them. The assassin's bullet hits Aunt May by accident and she ends up in a coma. Peter and Mary Jane contact a few superhero friends but they are unable to help. In a last ditch effort, the demon Mephisto shows up and will do two things - save Aunt May and also make the entire world forget who Spider-Man really is. Sabonis! The cost of the simple transaction - Peter and Mary Jane's marriage. So, Peter and Mary Jane figure that if they are one another's true loves, they will find each other again. They agree to the deal and wipe their marriage from all reality and memory to save his Aunt May.

Look, I'm not supporting assassinations nor reveling the death of old people, but come on! She's like 91 years old and has far outlived her usefulness in the world of Peter Parker/Spider-Man. I once heard about a nun that was very old in years who was diagnosed with cancer. Her church offered to pay for chemotherapy but she declined because she was old and the money could be better spent elsewhere - it was simply her time. Peter and Mary Jane gave up their entire marriage and life together. I'm sure Aunt May didn't want to go out via a sniper's bullet but life is tough sometimes. On the bright side, she could have been reunited with her beloved husband in Heaven who's been dead for a very long time now.

The story has met with a ton of controversy so I know my complaining won't do anything about it. Most people are whining about the changes to continuity but I'm tempted to go the other direction and start a 'Kill Aunt May' campaign since she is now a homewrecker and causing massive shifts in the fabric of reality.  I guess calling it 'Let Aunt May Pass in Her Sleep and Rest Peacefully' would be more appropriate, but I'll stick with my first title. Who's with me?!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Skippin' Ahead

I've been thinking a little bit about my Lost Room post the other day...

I started watching Dexter and it's pretty good.  I'm not 100% in love with it but it's pretty entertaining. The show is already up to season 4, so that's quite a bit of catching up to do.  Add to that it's only one of the many (see below) shows I've never seen and want to watch.  The problem is the amazing time commitment it will take to get through not only this, but all of the other series.

So I started experimenting with Dexter and watching only every other episode.  Each one starts off with a pretty good recap and if I follow my formula from The Lost Room post -- then I won't need to know how things happened, just that they happened.  It's working out pretty well so far.  Obviously, all of the main characters are still alive in every episode so anything that's presented as a threat isn't that much of a threat.  I'll get through the series faster and probably end up cutting out quite a few filler episodes along the way.

For anyone curious, here is a list of TV series I've never seen before and want to see.  When you realize how much of a time commitment it is, you'll see why I want to start skipping episodes --

The 4400
30 Rock**
Battlestar Galactica
Breaking Bad*
Curb Your Enthusiasm*
Eastbound and Down
Flash Forward
Friday Night Lights
Freaks and Geeks
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia*
Justice League
Mad Men
The Office*
Rescue Me*
Samurai Jack
The Shield
The Sopranos
South Park**
The West Wing
The Wire

* - in progress.
** - seen quite a few episodes here and there, but will probably need to start from the beginning.