Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Entertaining text message of the morning

Me: What do you think of Benjamin Netanyahu? and prospects look sunny for releasing some of my sexual tension come New Years!!!

DS: With Dzia? And it's too early in the morning to discuss Israeli politics.

That amused me greatly and is probably a good reason why getting Twitter will happen sooner rather than later. Makes more sense to use one of their micro-posts rather than take up a whole blog post about a morning laugh. Also helps I have control over my own phone bills now.

Anyway, hopefully only a few hours more left at work, last revisions on the report, print 10 copies, and my extended New Years celebrations can start today!!!! Here I come Philadelphia!!!!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Enjoyably Entertaining

I read this from the ever-eloquent and entertaining Hope and it just sounded too interesting to pass up!!!

The rules:

You leave a comment on this post, and I’ll assign you a letter. You write about ten things you love that begin with your assigned letter, and post it at your place. When people comment on your list, you give them a letter, and the chain continues on and on.


Edward James Almos
Or rather, Admiral William Adama of the Colonial Fleet. Few other television series' have captured my attention like the remade Battlestar Galactica. I'm a full on science fiction nut to begin with but this is the second series that has absolutely 'consumed' me mentally, emotionally, and every other '-ally' that I can think of. It brings me to the edge of my seat, or puts me into stunned silence; asks me questions I had never contemplated or leaves me in tears blurring the credits as they flash on the screen.

Whether it's making breakfast at home, or ordering an omelet at a diner after a long night out, I love eggs. Scrambled, fried, sunny side up, Benedict, or poached; I haven't met a style yet I don't like.

In addition to my rampant science fiction addiction, I'm also a fan of new technology. I'm an early adopter of the Amazon Kindle and have read scores of e-books and various other writings on it and am absolutely in love. I don't see it replacing physical books, for the simple fact I could only fit so many authors' signatures on it, but for mass market paperbacks of books I'm only nominally interested in, the cheaper price and lack of clutter once I've completed the book are significant pluses in my book.

My major in college and my best subject throughout all the education I've had thus far. In fact, it's gone so far as to help me get through other classes seemingly unrelated. I had a statistics class once (math being my absolute worst subject) when I was at community college. I couldn't grasp the concepts the further we went into class, my brain refusing to process abstract math, but it was English that saved me. 75% of our grade in that class was on 3 huge group projects. There were 3 of us in the group, and to this day, it's the only group that we all evenly contributed to. There was an older Israeli man whose house we'd meet at and he'd provide the computer, quiet space to work and 'brain food' as well as a better grasp of the classwork than I , a Polish girl who loved math and understood everything exactly, and myself, an American with English as his first language. He provided the focused work space, she did the work, and I made everything sound sweet and clear. It was the best academic arrangement I was ever a part of.

Staring into a lover, or sizing up an opponent eyes say so very much about a person, not to mention how cool they look under macro photography. At the same time though, I also find it amazing how much we actually can still do without them. From public services to adapted skills I could do everything I do now except for driving without them. One of my biggest fears in life used to be going blind, but with the work I've done with The Agency and so many blind friends and co-workers, it's a fear I can say I have no longer.

I mean, c'mon... who doesn't get into a cave or a big room and shout "Echo!" just to hear it reverberate around the walls. It's just cool.

Specifically the bald eagle I suppose. It's just such a majestic looking bird. Strong, powerful, sleek, a lot bigger than you'd expect it to be. I mean seriously, what was Benjamin Franklin thinking... a turkey?? Sheesh...

Sushi, sashimi, I don't care as long as the Japanese call it Unagi. I swear I could eat eel for the rest of my life and never get tired of it...

Regardless of their wide reaching success there's few things as hauntingly beautiful as hearing Amy Lee's voice in person. The rich, full sound echoing (there's that echo again) throughout the concert hall perfectly in tune with the piano she's playing. Simply beautiful. I also count myself fortunate that in addition to her two major label albums, I also have approximately 50 or so unique tracks from her very early years, back as far as 1997 I believe. Some of my favorite tracks are those not on major label release.

Last, but certainly not least, and more than likely tying into my science fiction obsession, I love aliens. Whether portrayed on television or the 'real accounts' I think it's one of the most fascinating topics out there. If they are out there, I'd be one of the first to volunteer and join up with them, no questions asked. Seriously, if a saucer appeared in my backyard and gave me 60 seconds to walk over and bean on up or they're gone, I'd be there before half my time was up.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Pre-Meeting Procrastination

We've got a huge meeting in about half an hour with all of the people from my particular unit spread out across the state. They're all driving here to the main office, where I work, and going through a day long meeting that will inevitably be filled with more hours of useless information and tactics to evade responsibility than productive dialog. Don't get me wrong, I do like my job quite a lot, but the typical demeanor of what seems to be most of the people I meet who are also state employees, well... it sucks. It seems like many of them never got off of the entitlement bandwagon and spend half the time complaining about what the State hasn't given them or has taken away from them and the rest of the time trying to get out of what they're supposed to be doing. The fact that my supervisor said the other day, "Well, I asked Person X to do this task, but we'll have to see if she actually does it." My jaw still hits the floor after almost two years of hearing language like that. "To see if she does it"?? Are you freaking kidding me!!! You were told to do it, so you do it damn it!!! There are so many people like that I've come across I can't imagine how my job isn't one of the most secure in the whole freaking Agency.

Ok, I'm done now. On to happier news, I was more productive yesterday than I've been in probably the last month combined. I wrote all 19 back case-notes from client visits, actually made a healthy dinner and my Teavanna tea, finished editing the wedding video, organized all 8,691 songs on my computer, and cleaned my e-mail inbox from 679 to 4. I don't know what came over me, but I like it.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

So, if there's one thing that I've learned...

It's that any time I get a week to ten days behind in something I'm supposed to be doing regularly, it seems like too insurmountable a task for me to catch up. Most recent point in case: regular daily blog posting. I'd like to say I'll get to it, but that seems to repeatedly set myself up for failure. (side note: at this point I've written more in these 3 minutes than the previous 7 hours a post had been open for me to write in) I did discover some things today though. One of the most important being, that I think one of the reasons for my severe lack of productivity at home is because I do/did too much in my room and have developed habits (for lack of a better word) that I can't break. You know how they *expert people* say that sometimes people think of eating at night when they go to bed because they eat in their room, or a student can't focus on homework as well in his room as s/he can when sitting at a desk or table... well one or two things like that has never been an issue for me. However, I eat, sleep, play, work, create, film, photograph, talk, write, and have worked through a mild depression all in my room here at my parent's house. Somewhere, one of those must have been the straw because I routinely feel a sense of paralysis in that I can't do what I need or want to. Another reason, I want my own place, and soon.

I was able to write my case notes from visiting my clients at the library with very little trouble. Less than if I were writing them either at home or the office. The latter I need to make sure I get in check sooner rather than later. There were times, before I had my current job responsibilities, where I would be waiting for things to do, or on no specific project with any specific deadline and was more or less just there waiting for them to give me something to do, and I got in the habit of reading articles. And not just one or two, but like 20 or 30 a day. Digg, Google News, NY Times, CNN, AP, Reuters, and then I started reading blogs too... It's sure been one way to keep my Google Reader nice and neatly at '0' but tends to slow the start of my day, and after lunch. Probably something I should fix sooner rather than later.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

This is a test...

To see if the new blogger gadget I added into my iGoogle home page will let me post to my blog while I'm at work, thus further decreasing what was otherwise a rather high level of productivity. More back-posting to continue tonight now that I finally have some free evenings to do them. Gotta live a life before you can write about one, yes?

Friday, November 14, 2008

November 14: Awesomeness and Confederate adventures pt. 1

So, Dzia stayed over last night. I really didn't expect her too, and it' one more reason that maybe this time is different than the last.... She had planned on coming over so we could go swimming at my gym and then maybe play guitar or watch a movie or something. Well, in a fit of Alzheimer's I left the free pass for her in my gym bag, in my car, locked in the Honda dealership. Awesome. Instead we went out for dinner with Surfer and his gf, both of whom I'll be heading to Richmond, VA with to visit Surfer's brother and sister. When we got back to my house, I stopped into my parents room to let them know she was staying (which they thanked me for and asked if she needed anything before they went back to bed. I love my parents) and then went to sleep. And yes, just to sleep.

In the morning she drove me to get my car since the part was finished being installed and then off to work. Work went by quickly with the anticipation of leaving for Richmond that night. I was supposed to meet Surfer at his parent's house and then we'd all leave from there around 6:30. Well, 6:30 somehow mutated into after 8pm and it started raining and being all sorts of foggy. We stopped for gas, Windex, and other necessities and headed to the Capital of the Confederacy. Around midnight I was done and since I actually had someone in the car whom I felt comfortable with driving my car, I let Surfer finish the drive. We pulled in front of his sister's place at 2:30am. We all had a Magic Hat #9, and were asleep by 3:30am.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

November 13:


This morning I dropped my car off at my friendly, neighborhood Honda dealership. I enjoy going in there when my car needs some TLC. I've got a few of the technicians whom I'm friendly with and get joke around from the second I get in until I walk out the door. The last time I went in, I walked out with a $2300 bill that I didn't anticipate getting. Needless to say that kinda drained me for the next few months (from September till, well, now) so I tried to get them to promise me to keep it under a hundred dollars. Luckily it was only the driver side seat belt that had failed and those are covered for the lifetime of the car! So not only was it under a hundred, it was free :-)

Also had my 2-month review at work today. Quite hard to believe that it's been 2 months already but that's what the paper from HR said so might have well as been a page from the Bible as far as I'm concerned. As soon as I got to my supervisor's office she just said, "sign here". No discussion, no hesitation, she had already filled out 'exemplary performance' and it was literally a 45 second review. I love situations like that!

Edit: To close the open thread about my drivers license. I said screw it and went to the DMV this morning (Thursday) before I dropped my car off and just got a new one. Turns out it was up for renewal and from the way the dates worked out, it had been expired since March of 2008. So whatever karmic luck that made me loose it, also made me get it renewed should I (knock on wood) get pulled over anytime in the future.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

November 12: Like a great big practical joke...

My driver's license, has vanished without a trace. It's not in my car, my state car, the pile of artifacts on my bay window that typically fill my pockets, anywhere else in my room, or the wash. The only possible long-shot places are my camera bag at my boss's house or work. Either of which have about a 3% chance of actually being the location of my license. My vote is still my room. Don't know where (obviously) but I feel like I'm just going to come across it one day and be like 'wtf'. So, that was a fun panicked driving around all day. I mean, seriously, I'd have gone at least 5mph slower on the highway if I had known...

In other news, one more piece of the proverbial umbilical cord cut today. I am the proud owner of my own cell phone plan. Yep, at 24 and a day shy of 9 months my cell phone plan is now finally mine. Any charges, overages, internet fees, pictures, calls, everything is my own to deal with. I think the lack of license has overshadowed my feelings on it a bit, but I really am glad. It's one thing I never have to answer a question about ever again. I can call 411 if I freaking feel like it, jump online for a quick KB or two to get a score or e-mail or Google maps (not that I'll need to with my Kindle, but you know, I can now). Also got a second line with mine, so now I have my phone, and my work cell phone, so certain parents will no longer txt message me at 8pm on a Saturday about if their child can attend the program happening 10 months from that date!!! Bah... parents.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

November 11: Frustration Abounds

So, the sleeping in until 3:45pm thing I can deal with. Clearly, I needed it, or else I would have woken up, duh. So, I don't mind that much time out of my day being gone, but today, more than most days I really felt how confined I am living back at home again. It doesn't matter how much it's realistic or not, I confine myself and everything I own to my room. I just can't spread things out to where they belong when I'm here living in my parent's house. Dvd's - closet, instruments - closet, random food- plastic bags in corner, clothes- everywhere, coffee maker - bay window, tool box- floor by my bed. Get the picture? If you're thinking, "Wow, that sounds like a cluttered mess, I bet he can't find anything in there..." you'd be dead accurate.

In my box of DV cassette tapes I should have 5 labeled for a wedding I did, however actually there are only 3 of them (and it took me 4 hours to find the right hard drive folder that had the files of the 5 tapes), I just recently found the power cord for my lap top after months missing, and I still haven't been able to get to the plug for my stero to plug it in so I can use it.

I know that this is messy and disorganized, but I'm not a messy and disorganized person. When I was in my apt in Philly everything was in it's place where it belonged, my bedroom was for sleeping, the entertainment center was for dvd's, kitchen for coffee maker, etc. It's killing me that I can't have it like that, either in actuallity or just feel that way psychologically. I'd be kicking myself and regret it greatly later, but I'm wondering if maybe I can't go out to LA for the Battelstar Galactica auction after all......

Monday, November 10, 2008

November 10:

Long day at work today. We had a big career fair/ seminar on how to have a positive look on life. It was one of those 6am-5pm kinda days and then had to walk home from the train station on top of it all. Originally I was dreading it. However, the walk home ended up being awesome. Except from the strange muscle/tendon/ligament/thing that I pulled randomly last week it wasn't a painful walk home. It was already dark but the moon was bright. I realized during the walk, that more than the crunch of leaves in the Fall, I enjoy the sound they make when I walk through them. They all fly up in the air, making the subtle crinkling sounds and then delicate, oh so delicate pops and clicks as the tumble back down the pavement. It's the subtle things like that I truly enjoy. Also the moon so bright I could see clearly at night. Like, bright enough to make out my hand, and the little lines and wrinkles in it. Simply awesome.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

November 9: Shhh, I'm sleeping.

Because I didn't get any all weekend. I was up back-posting and reading that Newsweek article till after 6am. By the time the sun started coming up I figured I should head to sleep. If any of you were wondering why the heck I labeled the last post "90210" it's because of Luke Perry.

I fully believe, that every misguided and romanticized view of dating, love, and relationships come from the years I was spellbound by 90210. I feel like I've written about this before, or maybe it's one of those drafts still sitting partially written, but looking back I internalized many things from those characters that I tried to incorporate into me. From why I got my first Zippo lighter to why I felt it was ok to loose my virginity as young as I did and a hundred more subtle things in between. As far as the Zippo story goes, it's simple really. I have an image of a scene in my head of one of the episode's endings. Luke Perry laying down on a couch, in his jeans and shirt, to go to sleep and the episode fading out on him lighting and staring at the lighter, fade to black.

This is short, because I'm actually slepeing right now ;-)

Saturday, November 08, 2008

November 8: Mixed weekend

Last night was awesome. We had a bonfire and cook out back in the woods at my friend's house. Most of our group was there and it was nice to all be together again. We didn't even have to do anything other than all just be together hanging out. That's one of the many things I love about us. We drank more than our fair share and had a great time. The girls would go off and talk their girl talk stuff, and we guys would talk our own talk around the fire when they walked away. Simply awesome.

Today however, was alright. We slept in (9am woo hoo...) made breakfast and then just hung out, I made an appointment to see why my car's SRS light is on, read more of this absolutely awesome NEWSWEEK article about some of the inside story of this historic presidential race, and then fell asleep. That, was apparently not the smartest thing to do, because I was a sour-pus for the rest of the night. We went out to New Brunsiwck to hit up the bars and just have a night out on the town which I was beyond not feeling. I drove so I didn't have to drink and spent money I didn't want to spend which was good, and then spent the rest of the time stressed out for some unknown reason and totally not enjoying myself. No one to txt to distract me, and the rest of them were off either hanging with their significant other or trying to work their magic on some of the bar's female patrons. Me, I found myself very captivated by SportsCenter and then LOST when they turned that on. I'm not really a big LOST fan, probably because I just haven't gotten into it, but it held my attention tonight. I had more cloves this night to try and knock off the edge of the stress than I've had since the summer program. Not that it worked all that well, but the time outside of the bar was helpful enough at least.

And now, as it's 5:10am and I'm writing this, I don't feel all that tired, and am fighting the urge to just drive home. I don't know why but I just wanna go. I can hear DS saying in my head, "Then just go." right now but that still doesn't mean I'm going to do it. It's not that simple, I'd have too many questions to answer about why/when I left, etc. And as much as I'd like to leave and go to sleep in my bed, it's not worth it. I think for tonight, I'm going to set my zippo on the table and stare at the flame for a while till I fall asleep.

Friday, November 07, 2008

November 7: Not enough time in the day

I love my job. I loved it before, and I love the many new aspects and responsibilities that I have in it now. The benefits are great, my coworkers(most of them) are awesome, and my students are proving a very varied and diverse bunch of interesting and sometimes challenging young adults. One of the things, that most of my friends give me a lot of shit for, is the copious amounts of time off. For example, in the typical 35 hour work week that I have, this week I got paid for the full 35 while actually working only perhaps 20, and less than that when you factor in that some of my job I got paid for driving to and from the schools my students are at. Awesome, right? Well, yes... but also very much no. Sometimes, I work so little that I can't get everything done in the hours I'm being paid for. This means that I have to make a conscious decision that I've gotta get stuff done in some of my 'free time' and that I'm not going to get paid for it. I do it, as much because it relives my stress of not having things done that I need to have done, and hope that eventually I'll work out a routine/schedule that allows me to get everything done I need to as well as have all this crazy time off.

I'm at a friend's house all weekend 'camping' as we're still calling it. I mean, it's at his house, on 10 wooded acres which doesn't get cellular phone reception. Might as well be in the middle of the woods in some state park. Should be a good time!

Thursday, November 06, 2008

November 6:

I've re-discovered a love from my past. A love all the way from back during middle school actually. The 24oz. 99cent cans of Arizona Iced Teas. I remember going through the lunch lines in middle school and it was always my preferred drink of choice. There was enough of it there to quench my thirst without feeling like it was too small of a portion and a very sound buy. I mean, you couldn't get any other drink of that size for that price.

At the Agency, my co-worker Maggie(obvi not her real name) and I usually go out for coffee in the afternoons, and lunch, and walks, and anything else we can do that's a break from the work we're supposed to be doing. Instead of getting what we usually get, I've been trying to switch to healthier and if possible, also cheaper alternatives. It's been a slow process with lunch, but the afternoon coffee has been more successful. I've not only worked myself down to medium coffee's when I do get them, but I found that there's a store that has the Arizona Iced Teas that I used to get in middle school. Not only do they have the awesome original iced tea, but about 15 other flavors: kiwi-strawberry, grape, black&white, energy, plumb, honey and ginseng, etc... I can't even name them all, it's fantastic.

The other fantastic part about it, is that I've gotten to know the guys who run the place now, so they see me with the tea, I hand them the dollar and walk out the door. I think that's probably the coolest thing about the whole situation. Story: When I was younger, sometimes I'd go with my father to pick up the Sunday paper. Being the creatures of habit that we humans are, he'd go to the same place every time to get it. He'd look through to make sure it had all the sections in it, and then walk past everyone in the line, drop the 75cents on the counter, nod to the clerk, and walk out. I thought this was the absolute coolest thing on the face of the planet. My father was so special and known that he didn't even have to wait in line to buy his paper, he could just go right on past and walk out. Now, I know better, but it still reminds me of how cool it seemed then.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

November 5: Tears of Joy

It was surreal.

Throughout last night and into this morning, I just felt like I was in a movie. Like, this stuff doesn't happen in real life. But it did.

I didn't believe it when I was watching it. I had dozed off apparently for a bit, what felt like just closing and opening my eyes for a second, that in real life must have been about an hour. Plastered on the screen it had Obama projected as the winner. I blinked, sat up, and didn't believe my eyes. A few minutes later McCain gave his concession speech, arguably the best speech he's given in the past few months (and no, not just because it was him giving up).

And then the wait. Camera's panned over the 200k gathered to hear their President-Elect. The music started, the crowd roared, millions of eyes all across the country and the world including my own glistened with tears of joy. Tears of hope. The turmoil and seemingly snails pace of the last 20-odd months since this insane shindig started melted away, one tear at a time. I wonder how many eyes, overflowing with pride, were even left able to see him delivering the final stirring paragraphs. I know mine weren't.

This victory alone is not the change we seek - it is only the chance for us to make that change.

And to all those watching tonight from beyond our shores, from parliaments and palaces to those who are huddled around radios in the forgotten corners of our world - our stories are singular, but our destiny is shared, and a new dawn of American leadership is at hand. To those who would tear this world down - we will defeat you. To those who seek peace and security - we support you. And to all those who have wondered if Americas beacon still burns as bright - tonight we proved once more that the true strength of our nation comes not from our the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals: democracy, liberty, opportunity, and unyielding hope.

This is our moment. This is our time - to put our people back to work and open doors of opportunity for our kids; to restore prosperity and promote the cause of peace; to reclaim the American Dream and reaffirm that fundamental truth - that out of many, we are one; that while we breathe, we hope, and where we are met with cynicism, and doubt, and those who tell us that we cant, we will respond with that timeless creed that sums up the spirit of a people:

Yes We Can.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

November 4: Election Day

I pulled up to the township municipal building, where I had gone countless times before to cast my vote. "Lords of Kobol" had just finished on my mp3 player as I got out of the car and walked under the overcast sky into the building. It was packed. More than I have ever remembered it being. The Smith's who live down the road from my parent's house were there, as always, volunteering to help run the polls. I waited in line, and then walked up to the table for District 3 and gave my name. Sign on the line in the book. Sign on the election ticket. Number 167. Wow, 167 at 10am... Last time I voted I was in the 90's and it was 6pm. I stood in line for the voting machine, making small talk with Mr. Smith as I waited.
"Has it been like this all day?" I asked.
"Yep, there was a line twenty people deep at 6am before we even got here! It hasn't stopped like that since then." He replied.
"Wow. Though, that's how it should be every election."
"Should be..." He trailed off, echoing my thoughts in his silence.
My turn. Through the curtain, the machine bleeped and blinked to life. Entertaingly enough, due to state and local politics, Barack Obama was the only democrat I voted for, the rest Republican either because I personally knew the candidate or I was specifically voting against the other candidate. I answered the ammendement and proposition questions, nothing racy or worth reporting there, appointing judges or open space preservation kinds of things, and then stared at the little green arrow pointing to Obama's name. I stopped for a second, taking it in.

"Today, we make history" and with that, I cast my vote.

Monday, November 03, 2008

I'll keep this short...

In any other election, I'd say just getting out and voting is enough. Stand in line, sign your name, push the button, even if you don't select anyone, just push the button, and go home knowing that you are doing what millions can't. This year, it's different. This year, there are two candidates, each of whom probably hold the future of this country in their hands. This year, more than ever, it really does matter.

Make a difference.

Change our world.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

November 2: An unorriginal naming scheme

If I'm already putting myself on the juicer to squeeze out 30 blog posts(yes, I had to sing the song to figure out how many days there were in November) and 50,000 words (which I haven't quite started yet, but I've thought tons about it!!) I'm not going to spend any excess cerebral sparkage on post titles. If they naturally happen, then fine... but other than that, it's not worth it.

2 days or so until history gets made in my country, one way or another. Personally, I hope it's the one way or else I'm going to have to see about how The Agency feels about me commuting to work from Canada...

Went out to my Favorite Winery because on the weekends they have their Holiday Spice wine all warmed up and served special for $5. Conclusion: I don't like it. Perhaps I should have tried it before I bought a few bottles, but yeah, it's waaaaay too heavy on the clove spice in it. It honestly reminds me of drinking a liquefied Djarum clove cigarette, which quite frankly, is disgusting. Oh well, I'll give it out as Christmas presents to people, I'm sure someone else might like it. Hopefully. I went there with Dzia, who, after recent circumstances, I have a feeling I'm going to be seeing a lot more of again. Normally I'm not one to really consider re-doing relationships for another go-round, but maybe if we're both in different places then it might work out eventually. Stranger things have happened... though, even with how many votes of conficence my closest friends have given her, I'm not quite holding my breath yet.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

NaNoWriBloPoMo... FoSho?

If backdating blog posts isn't cheating, which I'm assuming it isn't (even if it is), who thinks I can do both, simultaneously this year? If none of you are raising your hand (I'm not raising my own hand) my money's with all of you. I figure 1 of two things will happen here. Either, eventually I'll get so fed up of setting goals like this and failing miserably at them, that it'll finally spur me on to complete one or I'll actually do it for once, and huzzah! I can't qualify what kinds of posts these will be, or that I won't have to back-date a few(hopefully not too many) but about all I can say, is I hope to be slightly more pertinent than George Orwell. Not that it isn't fascinating for me to see what he considers pertinent enough to write daily in a diary about, but I wouldn't subject anyone else to it, until I'm as famous as... well... George Orwell.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Oh geez....

Where does the time go?? I've been gone a month. Wow. That's awesome and very helpful for my desire to write more often.

Um, hi....

Here's a list of links taking up my on-line time:


Second Life

Google News

Babylon Podcast

Anything Obama related

And soon to hopefully sap my life dry: NaNoWriMo

That's not to mention the days long process of cleaning my room, a friend having another round of biopsy's, attempting some sort of meager social life, being jealous of other people dating, dealing with living at home with the 'rents, and continually feeling unprepared and unqualified for the job position that I have.

The only recent up-side, my brother and I shot another wedding last Saturday and we rocked it. It looks like (knock on wood) that there were a few of the bride&groom's friends there who are looking for photographers and guess who's card they have!!! 2 more weddings and I'll have my second camera paid off, and then I get to buy/start paying off my 100-400 and decide on whether I want the 24-70 f2.8 or the 24-105 f4.


Thursday, September 25, 2008


So, it's official. My inherited caseload is so massively screwed up that I can't even start on any one new, let alone do what I need to for existing clients because what's on the computer end and what's in the physical file end aren't even close. There are unquestionably over a hundred individuals that I need to track down, close from my services, transfer to co-workers, transfer to other agencies, or worst of all, make up their info to get them off of my grid (my list) because there so far out of our system we have no contact info for them. So, until further notice, my work hours just became 8am to 6pm every day. As much of a pain in the royal behind this is going to be, I am really happy that I can build up 15+ hours of 'comp time'. Comp time basically means that I can just add it to any random day whenever I feel like it to make it add up to a full day. Example, I visit clients till noon, write on my time sheet I used comp time to fill up the rest of my required hours for the day, and then go rafting for the rest of the day on the river that happens to be close to the client I just went to see. We can store up to 60 hours and then the Powers That Be take it away from us with no reimbursement. Which, when thought about is reasonable enough considering with my 35 hour work week it's continual, self replenishing vacation time. And that doesn't count in our actual vacation, sick, or administrative time given to us. I've got two words for that: sweet deal.

I met with the financial planner guy who one of my employee's I hired seasonally last year gave my name too. After doing some research on the company he represents, I came to the quick conclusion that if I went out looking for someone in his field rather than him finding me, I would have most definitely chosen his company. He's a part of Northwestern Mutual has an unbelievably impressive and stable history in personal wealth management and life insurance. If they could maintain all of their workforce and even grow a little bit during the Great Depression of the 1920's, then whatever economic crisis we're going through now also shouldn't be a problem. Since I have a feeling that I will end up investing/starting some financial relationship with him, I'm going to use the name Tony for whenever I talk about him. No, not Chris's Tony but rather because of Tony Soprano. It entertains me greatly to nickname him for the most famous, fictitious, Jersey mobster and to think that he's in charge of my future financial stability. I'm easily amused...

Yesterday (because I passed out at 6:30 until my alarm this morning and didn't get to write or anything else for that matter), after job shadowing my counterpart in the southern part of the state I met Dzia to hang out for a bit. I hadn't seen her since she came up on a rainy Saturday three weekends back attempting to wash our cars together. Were I not a bit under the weather and the weather a bit warmer than it was we might have washed them anyway, but ultimately decided Starbucks was a better plan. Anyway, we met on the River and did all the fun cliche things that a boy and a girl do, talked, laughed, skipped rocks, joked around, went for a walk, etcetera etcetera. It was nice to see her and I did have a really good time. I really do believe that when she and I had our 'go round' the first time we just met a bit too early in each of our lives, and now, while we've got better timing in that respect, we just gotta not go too fast and we just might end up with something... or, at least there's the possibility of it. Just the fact that she entertained and seemed enthused at the idea of coming to Vegas with myself and a few friends is a significant step from whence I last knew her.

My Internet is actually out as I'm typing this, so if it doesn't come back up before I'm ready to head to sleep, which is quite soon, I have every intention of back dating this post to the proper day and time. Now if only there were a way to transfer this to my Kindle and I could post it from there...

Monday, September 22, 2008

Headaches, weddings, and then some...

Today, was the first day in nearly a week and a half where I haven't had a splitting migraine like headache just about exactly 4 hours after I woke up. It's nice, really nice to be pain free like that, but at the same time after having it been so consistent there's still a little fear in the back of my head that this is only a tease. I'm not sure quite when that irrational fear crept up on me, but if I'm sick for more than a week I don't really enjoy the places that my thoughts go to. Intense feelings of inevitability; that I'm never going to get better and I'm only going to get worse. Unrealistic and ridiculous, I know, but that doesn't prevent them from coming. Maybe it was from watching my uncle degrade in the months leading up to his death, maybe just the amount of times I've been sick, or just one too many episodes of House.

In other news, I finally e-mailed myself home a bunch quotes and sayings that I had collected while I was at work that I wanted to add to my Commonplace Book. So far it consists mostly quotes and the definition of what it is taped on the inside cover lest I ever forget. If I had a color printer I feel like it might fill up faster, but then again, not having one just means maybe I can coerce myself into drawing or constructing something artistic rather than easy.

I went to a wedding on Saturday for a friend of mine who I knew from high school. We were definitely friends then and had managed, more or less, to keep in semi consistent contact throughout the college years but I'll admit, I was kinda surprised when I got the invite. Anyway, it was a beautiful, hi tech, 'contemporary christian' wedding as it gets. (Interestingly enough, he found the exact same evangelical christian group on his college campus that I found on mine, which could have been enough of a connection...) Except for the headache I still had at that point, exacerbated by the flashing lights and loud dance music, that is. I found out that I had a hidden boccie ball talent I never knew about. He also had up a video camera where guests could step out of the reception and leave a message, personal, crazy, or a mildly inebriated mix of both. We did a group crazy one from high school, but I did go back and leave him a personal, dare I say even religiously inspirational, message to him and his new bride. It was probably one of the first times in the past year I've referred to anything remotely christian/religious.

My uncle came up in conversation again tonight. It's strange how from June-Sept his memory always seems to resurface just a little more than it would have any other time of the year. It's like there's still an indent in the fabric of life where he's missing from. Anyway, his first name was one of the pen-names I used in college when I was writing poetry I didn't want to have to explain to the fellowship. I sent the link to said poem to Dzia, whom I've had the greatest resurgence of a relationship with since we talked early last month, and she asked me to explain the name that I used. So I did, and I of course thought of my uncle, and then something hit me that I never quite thought of before. I was thinking about how much else I wish he could teach me, guitar, music, painting, drawing... when I realized he taught me something infinitely more valuable. Infinitely more personal. In that last day I spent with him, he taught me how to die.

As morbid as that may sound it gives me as much greater level of peace and contentment in the ongoing process of dealing with him being gone. Up until now, I think I felt a more significant touch of jealousy toward my cousins than I was aware of. They had learned music and art from him while I just got to see him on holidays and think on memories of watching in awe rather than being taught to participate with. (There was one time, only one, that I can ever remember participating musically with him to such a point where he looked at me and smiled, and took notice. Him, my cousins, and I broke out in Rufus Wainwright's Hallelujah for a reason now lost to time) That day I spent with him, watching the Yankees, talking about life and relationships, eating a whole pint of Strawberry Hagen Daaz.... all in the face of an inevitable amount of just days left... Maybe what I learned that day can't be accurately passed on in words, but to be able to breath just a little bit easier when the memory of him stirs this time next year will make all the difference.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

A rough week

For whatever reason I just can't seem to shake whatever germ army I have floating around in my bloodstream. It's definitely a German or Swiss germ army though... very intense and very precise. At 9am every morning I've felt the headache come on, by 10am it's near migraine or migraine status, beats hard until about 4 or 5pm, and then retreats for the evening and quietly lingers not causing any pain, but reminding me it's still there. It's probably from just having been sick so many times growing up, but I don't do well with long, consistent illnesses like that. They tend to bring my ordinarily optimistic demeanor to a very abrupt dark pessimism. I've been getting by this time because even with the headaches still here, I can definitely feel the cough, sore throat, achy rest of the sickness has just about cleared up.

I'm unrealistically hoping that tomorrow(Saturday) will be my first really good day, because I'm going to be at a wedding and spending the night at a hotel. I'm about 3/4 excited and 1/4 nervous for tomorrow. I'm not in the wedding, or doing photography/video for it (which I do if anyone's getting married and looking for a photographer/videographer ;-) but it's a good friend of mine from high school, and a girl he met from his fellowship up at his school. A chapter of the exact same fellowship that was at my school. Considering the amount of contact I've wanted to keep in with that time in my life (about nil) and the fact that I'm going to be around more of them and more of their music and beliefs and conversations and 'traditions' if you will, than I have been in the last year at least, probably closer to two. Frankly, I dont' think that his wedding is the time or place to get into any of it, my current thoughts or simple lack thereof, so I'll say what I need to say and do what I need to do to pass and should someone be sensitive enough to see through it, then I'll call it fate and see where it leads. Might as well start discussing the elephant in the room....

Caught up on the TV shows I've been missing not having regular tv channels/DVR. In a short recap: Knight Rider, as much as I want to love it will probably be the earliest canceled show of the season, and rightfully so; Terminator, was fantastic as expected. The season premire had me bowing to Bear McCreary's musical genious for the whole first act, and by the last act my jaw was on the floor with the reveal of Shirley Manson's character; Prison Break, continues to add depth to already deep characters and totally earns the increase in viewrship it's been steadilly getting; Bones, continues to just feel real, dealing with interpersonal issues in a realistic manner. David Boreanaz is more amazing with each episode and as much as I didn't like him at first, Sweets is growing on me. Still a few shows I'm missing, but I can only watch so much tv for so long...

Reading however, ever since I got the Amazon Kindle, has been steadilly increasing to the point of taking time away from sleeping again. I imagine it'll simmer down eventually, but it's nice to want to read and have so many things to read again. All the paperback Star Trek series and other little books that I felt were a waste of space reading once and then storing, but wanting to have and not just take out from the library are now becoming mine. I can attach notes to lines or concepts in them I like and have all those notes magically appear in one file, it's delicious. A full post/review on the Kindle is still in the pipeline... just not sure where.

So here's to a hopefully better coming week. If I can just get through work productively, a few scheduled meetings passibly, and not be in pain/sick for the coming festival where I'll be rendevouxing with a few people I'm very interested in seeing again I'll be a very happy individual.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Penicillin is my friend

So, to combat Sinus Infection of Doom, the doctor, of course, gave me medicine. By far, this isn't the first time this has happened. I spent every other week in the pediatrician's office when I was growing up with some ear or throat, or tonsil, or sinus infection of some kind or another. Back then, before the prevalence of antibiotic resistant germs, it was prescription after prescription of bubble gum flavored penicillin. We had barely just finished the one that was just in the fridge before the new one was there for whatever was ailing me next. Sometimes I seriously think that I owe more thanks to science and the pharmaceutical companies for bringing and keeping me in this world than I do my parents. Before I digress into the "How I came into this world" story....

This antibiotic, Avelox, which they prescribed me the other day is apparently some newer class of antibiotic designed to kick the crap out of penicillin resistant germs. That's fine, so I can see if we can add something else that actually works to the list of drugs I can take to fight infections. Apparently, my fragile little body is not capable of handling that newer and stronger class of drug because woah side effects. The first day it was just headache and dizziness. Today however, full on migrane, upset stomach, dizziness, nausea... you get the picture. Needless to say, the doctor thought it prudent to have me stop taking that and prescribe something new. And by new I mean old, tried and true, penicillin derived Augmentin.

This got me thinking, and knocking on wood real hard, but what if penicillin ever stopped working for me. The last two not-penicillin based drugs didn't go so well, at all. Logically there must be hundreds of other drugs out there in various strengths and forms but still... it's kind of a scary thought when it's probably inevitable that one day I'll catch a bug that it won't work on. Then what? I know I've never had the immune system of Superman, but I found myself contemplating whether I need to slow down life a bit and start living a bit more in moderation. Maybe just because I can function on 4 hours sleep doesn't mean that I should. Maybe a more static routine is a better thing for at least my health. Could it be that at 24 I need to start thinking about slowing down my life?!?! Growing up, I always pictured my 20's and 30's as wild and crazy times filled with parties, trips, vacations, countless nights spent at the bar or club... Maybe at the end of my 30's or 40's once I've got a wife and kids and bills and a house and stuff could I start to slow things down a bit. I've never been the party pooper. I've always been the last one up to squeeze all the life and experience out of any given moment but maybe I don't need to do that every time. Maybe the summer program will run itself just fine if I don't work 14+ hours a day for a month straight. Maybe giving some time to moderation now will give back more time in longevity. Maybe.... maybe I'm just overreacting.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Letters, vol. 2 (at least)

Dear Sinus Headache of Doom,
It's been fun. No really, I mean it. But seriously now, you're just about at the point where you've overstayed your welcome. Tonight's the last night you can stay but after that I fully expect for you to have your bags packed and for you to move on. We both know that you'll be back again someday.

Best of luck,
Zeke and Tylenol Sinus

Dear New Job,
I think we're going to get along just fine. I know that you were abused and neglected by at least the previous two people in my position and that we've got a lot of work to get you up to snuff, but we can do it. We can fill the over 50 physical files that were never started and make sure that those students don't fall through the cracks, or at least that no one else does. Yes, it's also been quite an adjustment for me moving down a floor and having to establish relationships with a whole new set of co-workers, but you've rewarded me thus far with a new boss equally as awesome as my old one and a cubicle the size of Texas. I mean, c'mon... I've got a window and enough space to set up a Twister mat and not roll over it when I'm working at my computer. Not that I'm suggesting we get in an office sized game of Twister, but you know... We could.

Keep up the awesome,
Satisfied employee Zeke

Dear Summer Program 2009,
I know that programs 2006-2008 owned my life for the month of July but I'm putting my foot down right now: I will not accept more of the same. We are going to have little deadlines starting in March so that there's no craziness leading up to July, and by Jove I will find or make out of legos competent assistant(s) to my position who I can delegate tasks to and be sure they'll get done to my satisfaction. I will have days off, I will not completely disappear from those I care about in my life, and I will sacrifice what it takes to see to that happening.

Director Zeke

Dear Room,
You look only moderately better than Galveston, TX does right now. There is a method and order to my chaos with all the things I've thrown about and it will be better soon. Ever since moving back out of Philly it's been difficult to re-adjust to having everything from clothes to toasters in my room because it's the only place for *my* stuff. If E does change jobs, hopefully you'll be cleaned out for good within the next year or so. Pretty soon you'll forget about the piles of stuff on my bay window.... and floor... and desk... and in it's place will be a new desk, a finished window and an uncluttered floor.


Dear John Mayer,
I may not be able to stand the rest of your catalog of music, but you hit it out of the park with "Stay".

Just because it's on repeat,

Thursday, September 04, 2008

I'm mobile

This is a test post from my new Amazon Kindle. If you're into reading, new technology, and just plain cool stuff this device is for you. Full review is forthcoming.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Looking for the Elusive "Her" #1: She's Independent

Her physical characteristics are vague, but that's not what's important about her. We're at a gallery opening, my gallery opening, or some similar type event. It's your typical movie scene wine and cheese affair. White walls with various pictures and paintings hanging and people milling about. Shiny wooden floor, a mix of recessed and track lighting, you can picture the place... I'm on one side of the room, having just finished talking to someone or some reporter like people but whomever they were, they were individuals who had clearly taken me away from something else I had been doing. There was a silence as they disbursed and I turned around to survey the room and find who I was looking for. There she was, across the room, straight black dress, lightly sequined/sparkly, glass of white wine cupped in her hands, talking to 2 or 3 people. I don't know what she looked like or even what color hair she had, I just remember being wildly impressed, overwhelmed even, by the air of independence she gave off. That regardless of the situation, or what was going on, or who was or wasn't there, she could hold her own and take care of things.... that I could feel comfortable letting her take care of things. I didn't feel like I had to run over and save or help her. She was fully independent, but there with me as well...

In some ways, I think it's that feeling that I'm waiting for from someone else to really allow me to let go and fall into love with them. I'm a control freak about many things and I know that. I deal with that and try (often successfully) to control it so it's not detrimental to the projects I'm working on or things I'm doing.

This past month I've been the director of a summer program(A.K.A Why I've Disappeared) and have had no choice but to let go of a lot of things I'd rather have retained control over myself. However, it was stipulated in my contract that I could only work 192 hours in a two week period, compared to the 273 I had last year. I very closely trusted the two individuals who I had working right under me making decisions in my place, and that helped a lot. But there was always that feeling where I had to be around, not over them, but around because I knew them well enough to know when they'd make decisions based upon their feelings and not the overall good of what needed to be done. That was fine and expected, I still do it too. In the end the program this year turned out more than fantastic and it was the best it's been (though, I had the added assistance of two prior years to build on and adjust from, so I can't take nearly all the credit).

That image, of 'the woman in the black dress', that's a whole other level than like it was at the program. I felt more comfortable, more trusting, more able to let go of the need to control with that 'mythical' woman. I put that word in quotes because I hope very much she's not mythical. To have that deep a trusting with someone would be exactly what I'd be looking for in a life partner to compliment me. I would need to feel that while we made a perfect pair, she could stand all on her own in the multitude of every-day settings that life throws at us. If I had to continually second guess if she could, the relationship would not last.

I've been trying for months to really figure out the kind of person I want to be with so I can either 1. look for those traits in people I meet, and/or 2. not pass over someone I already know who has them but I'm just blind to it at the moment. Figuring out what's really important to me hasn't been as easy as it sounds. "Just create your ideal woman" really is a shitty guideline to try and go by since that always seems to turn into some type of deluded sexual fantasy. So instead of that, I took the only thing I knew... that one fleeting image of whoever she was in whatever dream or imaginary world she came from and decided to start there. Hopefully, one post at a time, I'll be able to collect the personality and character of that elusive woman I keep searching for, and finally end up with a physical body to go with it.....

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The rumors of my disappearance have been greatly... well, maybe slightly exaggerated...

But that doesn't mean that I'm back here full time yet either. For those of you who don't know me in real life, I'm currently running a work skills training program for blind or visually impaired high school aged students. I'm the Coordinator of Student Life, aka: Director of the program when the program manager (my boss) isn't around... which has been quite frequently. I oversee all activities related to dorm life (the students live on campus for 2 weeks), Independent Daily Living skills from showering to getting to class on time, recreational activities, schedules for Orientation and Mobility training, as well as overseeing my staff of 7 who interact directly with the students. I'm up every day at 6am and working till about 12am and then hanging and talking with my really really awesome staff until about 2am. I've been here since July 5th and will be here until August 2nd, at which point I will promptly fall face first onto my bed and sleep for at least a day. After that, I'm off to Vegas and Sequoia National Park with my parents for a mini vacation, and then I start work at The Agency full time!! I just got offered a permanent position and while I may be too tired to be excited about it now, I'm pretty sure inside I am. I'm going to be a Transition Counselor for students aged 14-21 for the northern part of my state. Getting them technology, sitting in on IEP meetings, making sure they have an IPE when they graduate, getting them any and all other services they need, that's me for about 200 of them. It may sound like a lot, but believe it or not, it's doable.

That's all for now, and probably the foreseeable next 3 weeks... I've got a metric shit-ton of stuff to do, and quite a long list of incidents/ideas for posts here or other writing so that hopefully once I've got my life back from this program, I'll be able to schedule a regular time to write and actually get some of this out of my head and into reality. I'll try not to make any more empty promises of this time or that time and just say, eventually.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Blogging the week in pictures (and subtitles) #2

Hey, your name is written in the pavement... haha!


Bingo. Checkers. Monopoly. Chess. Independence.

If you're a fan of Battlestar Galactica....

Just a little nap after dinner.

If you're really lucky, tomorrow I'll show you my photocopier at the office.....

Monday, May 19, 2008

Blogging the week in pictures (and subtitles) #1

I couldn't not walk through the set on my way to catch the 6:33am train...

Taped to the wall of Track 4 Section A.

Sometimes, I get a little bit OCD at work...

A routine visitor to my cubicle.

Finally, the first 150 copies of my report completed!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

I've watched too many "made for TV" movies...

When I was in high school, it was called "being a romantic."
In college, it became "hopeless romantic."
Now.... I think "delusionaly romantic" is appropriate.
I don't know why it is, but every time I go to meet someone new of the female gender, a little part of me starts whispering in the back of my head, "Maybe this one. Maybe this time you'll walk around a corner, see her, she'll look at you, and there will be this magic connection with imaginary bells chiming and you'll just know she's the one and you can stop looking."

I've probably hear that voice 40 or 50 legitimate times(or at least times that voice thought was legit) in the past few years. So often, that it's probably one of the single biggest reasons that I'm still single at the moment. It comes on so often in fact, that it makes me hesitate about starting something with someone who I don't have that spark with. Who might instead, just be a nice, attractive, willing, loyal person who's interested in me. That's not enough. Maybe it should be, and I'm missing out on what could grow into something better than I imagine that spark of a moment to be. But right now I can't do that, it'd be unfair to whomever I was dating at the time. As much as I'd be with them, my mind, my heart wouldn't be completely in it, because around that next corner I'd always be looking for that one person. It's the irony of of all ironies, but I can't stand movies with that plot line.

I hate them so much apparently that I've become one. Shaving, dressing up, trying to look good because I'm going to be meeting a newly hired co-worker tomorrow whom I've never met before. And for whatever reason this week, that voice decided to start talking about her, and "how perfect it would be and how her being it would fit". That I'll walk down to her cubicle and turn the corner and that spark will be waiting there for me in her eyes. Do I sound as pathetic as I feel?

This shares a similarity I think to the reason I can't watch Smallville on TV. Instead of enjoying an episode, I find myself almost depressed after watching one... the more I watch the more depressed I get. Feelings of inadequacy overwhelm me, while even though I know it's just a made up TV show, I still feel like I'm insignificant and doing nothing in comparison to them. I feel guilty that I'm not Superman, or making a difference as an 'ordinary' person like Chloe.

I use what of it I can to my advantage. Using that drive to find ways to do things more efficiently and quickly than others would expect, which has, upon occasion led to praise from bosses and supervisors. I'm sure it's why I have trouble just doing something, and always have to do it well or work at it until I can. It's disconcerting and agitating to me when I feel average, or below at something. I don't have to be the best at everything, I know that's unrealistic, but I'd better be at least in the upper tier of ability (or have a good reason why I'm not, eg. gymnastics - I'm not a flexible 12 year old female) or it's gonna get to me.

So I go to sleep every night, and wake up ever morning, hoping to run into that spark that some part of me is convinced exists somewhere. I don't want to exist on the "maybe you're the one maybe you're not the one" plane of existence I see most everywhere I look. I don't want to wait on their every word or be let down by errant words they might or might not have meant anyway. A equal spark. Like two single lane roads merging seamlessly into one two lane road. Each road still exists unhindered but joined. I don't want to look in the mirror and see my happiness dependent on that person being in my mirror. I want to look at myself in the mirror and see happiness, and then look in the mirror next to mine and see happiness.
I don't want 1+1=2
I want 1+1=11

Sunday, May 04, 2008

It wasn't quite this simple...

Boy meets girl.

Boy likes girl.

Boy and girl get to know each other.

Mutual attraction develops.

Dating occurs.

Relationship begins.

Awesome honeymoon period of 1-4 months.

Boy sees things he doesn't like anymore in girl.

Boy decides ending the relationship is the best choice.

Awkward ending relationship time period.

Relationship ends.

Time passes.

Boy talks to girl again because as much as he knows they didn't work out he still misses the things about her that caused him to like her in the first place.

Enter familiar flirtation stage right.

Boy sees how fun and exciting flirtation is.

Boy begins to doubt whether the things that were worth ending the relationship, really were.

Boy feels desire to kiss girl, just to... you know... see what happens.

Boy is faced with a choice: 1. To logically accept that of course since he liked her once, he would like the same things about her again and he really made the right choice ending things because he is blinded to anything but what he likes seeing... 2. Maybe he made a mistake the first time around and hey, let's try this thing again because he really likes her and this time will be different.

Boy looks at other relationships in his past and evaluates how same or different this one would be.

Boy begrudgingly accepts choice one after realizing that "this time" is never any different.

Boy kicks himself for being stupid... again... and gets ready for bed, after setting an alarm so he can wake up and make her breakfast....

Sunday, April 20, 2008

What happens when you stare at a screen and the dam finally breaks....

So, I made the decision this weekend that I'm not staying on another year in Philadelphia. I'm relieved, but not happy. In a way, it feels like I've failed. I've failed at moving out and supporting myself on my own. Now, I have to crawl back to my parents house and live there and save money before I try again. In reality it's nothing like that. My parents would most likely have helped me pay the few bills that I needed help with, and supported me as I needed for at least another year at which time I might have been able to save up enough to keep on making a go of it. No, I wouldn't have had a big nest egg to work with, if any.... but who does now? I read so often about friends who are making it paycheck to paycheck, moving around restlessly, searching desperately for roommates to bring the bills down to a barely reasonable level, and part of me thinks, "yeah, that's what this time of life is all about".

But then Vulcan logic kicks in and I remember a piece of advice I once gave to a girl I thought I was going to marry. This was my High School Sweetheart and we were both going through college application craziness. She was applying to a whole bunch of schools that she really wanted to get into and taking it as seriously as most guidance counselors tell most high school students they should. I, on the other hand, hadn't yet even begun to fill out my one page application to community college because I knew I was going there and they don't reject anyone, so why worry?

In retrospect, I think she resented me for that. We planned to take our SAT's on the same day so we could go to the park after we had finished. She went to bed early that night before, ate a breakfast and was there 20 minutes early, just like her Princeton Review course had told her to be. I didn't take any courses, didn't go to bed any earlier, slept in too late, and went to take the test in the shorts and t-shirt that I had slept in. My bed-head conveniently camouflaged under a New York Yankees baseball cap.

She, being a music major (the first of many major changes), had the benefit of an audition where she could prove that she was better than her SAT's said she was. I knew that's where she would shine. I could listen to her sing for hours (less if she chose to sing soprano, but when she sang alto... endless), smile watching her connect with 3-5 year old's until my face was sore, or drift into such a peaceful state listening to her flute echo throughout the church sanctuary. Being with her, made me know that if no other quality, being musically inclined would be one of the quickest ways into my heart.

I digress. She had a contact, a teacher, at her first choice school who her father played with regularly in a band. He mentioned to her father, knowing her talent was more than tests and grades showed, that if she ever decided to come to his school to let him know and he'd help her out. Now, this wouldn't have disproportionately advantaged her against any other applicant, rather, leveled the playing field so to speak. My advice to her at the time (spoken with a heavy grain of religious salt) was that, "[If God] had given you this contact, this ability, isn't it unnecessarily handicapping yourself [and going against God's Will] not to use everything you've been given to accomplish what you want?"

As luck, chance, [God?] would have it, I was born to extraordinary parents, who have enough confidence in how they raised me that they will selflessly give to me above and beyond the call of other parents knowing I won't let them down. Was I entirely out of money for living in Philly? No. Between no interest offers and loans from friends who'd I'd loaned large amounts of money in the past, could I make it? Yes. Would it be easy and would I have much, besides saying I lived in Philly for 2 years, to show for it? No. So I'd be 2 years behind in what life should be [I guess], and have little if any savings to start some real attempt at a stable life because frankly, working 35 hours a week, and commuting 30 hours a week at a minimum is not realistic for anyone.

DS called it before I even really felt it. She knew that this was ridiculous and that I need to stop being whatever I was being and do what needed to be done. As we sat in the Vietnamese place for lunch, "So you're not happy with life at the moment"
"You're not happy with your commute and overall lack of free time."
"You're not even happy with the way you look or feel physically."
"Then what the hell are you doing?"
And of course, she was right. I think my trip out to see her was the first step, and my weekend spent at home, just at home this past weekend was the second and final step. I've got someplace to go home too which I've always had. I'm already in the routine of paying out for rent, utilities, etc, so now I can keep that up and just pay it right into a savings account (which my father has agreed to keep so I'm not stupid with the extra money floating around). I'm used to missing 30 hours a week, so now I can take that time, put an extra 2 a day to sleeping (bringing it from 4 hours a night back up to 6ish) and focus those other 4 hours on creative endeavors. I'm going to start keeping a "creative log" of sorts to make sure I don't squander my newfound time on stupid things, like getting lost on the Internet or something else unproductive. I want to try painting. I want to get back to writing music. I need to have 8,000 words in an intelligible novelette or few chapters of a novel by June 30th for a week long Science Fiction writing seminar I want to attend. I'd like to put Linux on my laptop, and make it fully functional on my desktop. I'd like to go rock climbing with Superman again. I'd like to not run myself into the ground during the week, and have to sleep at 12 hour clips on the weekend to catch up.

And now, that it's 3:49ish and I've managed to combine what looks like at least 3 individual posts in to one (possibly) semi-coherent ramble, I'm going to sleep. I'm also reserving the right to edit this once I'm awake and, well... awake.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Blogmark - California

Like the scores of books sitting on myself with colored tassels hanging out of their tops and down their spines, marking places I've long since forgotten that I've read to, so this blogmark holds a place in my blog for my trip to California. This will be where I will explicate the following potentially confusing list of events.

In only a minor representation of no particular order, where:

- I met Gaius Baltar, the harbinger of death to the 12 colonies of Kobol, all for a hot blond and glowing spine;

- I met one of the most significant contemporary musical influences in my life currently;

- I learned that geeks everywhere can bond anywhere;

- Sleeping in an airport is an acceptable means of overnight accommodations;

- I walked 2 miles uphill because 1. I said I would and 2. was too stubborn to stop anywhere but the top;

- I decided to watch a tear-jerker of a movie on a plane surrounded by 5 adult women from the same eye doctor's office coming back from a conference of some sort, presumably having to do with optometry;

- I helped DS successfully think up a good excuse to play hookey from work and spend the day roaming her world, meeting her friends, and enjoying her company just like the old times;

- I traveled the countryside to have lunch with far off friends, because they weren't so far off anymore;

- I decided it was a great idea to take a 10:25pm flight to get me home at 6:45am after the appropriate amount of time and time zone adjustments, and then go right to work at The Agency (my blind co-workers can't see me sleeping, so I won't actually be sleeping then, right?)

- I now go to sleep to rest for my last day with the ocean on the wrong side me and turn off DS's iTunes I've been enjoying listening to (I forgot how much I missed my Robert Miles cassette tape, which I should probably get on CD now...)

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Terminator:TSC season finale

The orange creamsicle tasted sweeter than I remembered. Maybe because it had been so long since I had a chance to enjoy such a simple pleasure. This was the first break I had gotten in a long time from trying to save the world... except for school. If you can really count school as a break....

Derek was more relaxed than I'd ever seen him, elbows propped up on the picnic table we were sitting at. Seeing him that relaxed made me tense up and I scanned the park, making note of all the faces and finding at least 4 paths for a quick escape. At least one of us should have our guard up. Mom's training.

I only half listen to Derek as he talks to me. I look around the park again, trying this time to see it from his point of view. Knowing what this place will look like after Judgment Day... and yet, sitting here, barely believing your eyes that it could ever have looked like it does now. Sun shining, kids playing, green grass... hell, the sun or grass of any kind at all....

The baseball, bright white against the emerald grass, brings me back to the present. I had noted the kids playing earlier, but had already deemed them not a threat. That's all the Machines would need to do... create child Terminators. The ball stopped a few feet in front of me and I knelt down to pick it up. The littlest one ran over to get it from me. I smiled at him, or more accurately, the innocent, carefree spirit I saw within him. In his world, there was no other concern but getting that ball and continuing to play with his older brother. For a split second we stared at each other, eyes locked in a familiar sort of gaze. 'Cute kid,' I thought, secretly hoping to myself that he might be one of the ones spared from living through the war with Skynet; That he would never have to loose his innocence....

As he smiles his 'thank you' and runs back to his brother my gaze lingers upon them, observing a life I never led. A life of playing in parks, not living in constant fear that a Machine might be sitting on the bench across the street calculating the best time to kill me. As the children exchange gear and the older one takes the ball something catches my eye. For a split second, it looked like there was a name on the back of the shirt... I watch, silently willing him to turn around again to prove to me it was just an apparition. The older one turns around and I freeze. A million thoughts fly through my head at once, eyes widen, mouth falls agape. It can't be... R-E-E-S-E. It is. My mouth starts to move but no sound comes out. Is that Derek? If that's Derek then that means....

I regain control of my body before my voice and spin to face Derek sitting, smirking at the table, knowing I had just discovered his birthday present to me. "Is.... Is that.... you?" I'm hardly capable of stammering those words out. He says nothing. His eyes move from the kids up to me, a silent answer. I turn back and continue to stare at them, my mouth moving, yet soundless. I turn back, needing to know... "And the younger one... is that...." Derek answers as I trail off, already knowing the question that was coming. "Kyle." It is. That's my father, or rather will be my father....

He's in mid throw as I turn back around to look at him. He looks so focused, completely concentrating on throwing the ball back to his brother. The satisfied look on his face after he makes the 20ft throw causes a smile to tick at the corners of my lips. He runs back to pick up the bat again. "Throws pretty good for a 5-year old, huh?" Derek asks. I didn't need to answer. I couldn't answer. The emotional weight on my chest was beginning to choke me up. He picked up the bat, clearly too big and heavy for him, and choked up almost 4 inches. "Your father always had a nice arm." My heart skips a beat... He knows! Shit, did I give it away? Mom told me not to tell him, I didn't just do that... did I? I swing my torso to face him. Barely louder than a whisper, I choked out, "How'd you know?" Derek looks me in the eye, not hesitating for a moment. "Every time I look at you I see him" as his eyes dart back to the 5-year old Kyle swinging his bat.

My heart once again fills my throat as I'm lost for words. Half a smiling, half in awe my mind is reeling with the events of the past few minutes. My uncle, introducing me to my father decades before my father will conceive me with my mother. It's almost too complex for me to get my head around, but there it is... right in front of me. "Besides, your mom's his type" Derek adds. I slowly turn back to face my father. My body quivers with emotions I can't even being to distinguish. Part of me wants to cry, wants to run over to him and say ' it's ok dad, mom and I are here' .... but he's only 5.

My eyes tear up in the realization that this moment, here and now, is as close as I will ever get to having a complete family.... a normal family like everyone else. A mother, a father, and their child. This is the only time the three of us will ever physically be in the same place during the same time. My lip quivers and an unseen chill runs down my back. "Happy Birthday" Kyle says quietly. My eyes stay locked on my father as I burn every detail of each second into my memory. I've finally met my father.

I swallow hard against the lump in my throat. Happy Birthday.....

Tuesday, April 08, 2008


14 hour days. That's what I'm running right now. Up at 5:30am, out at 6, on trains from 6:30 to 8:45, working till 4:30, on trains from 4:56 through 6:40pm if I'm lucky(7:40 if I'm not). I'm not looking for a pity party... I'm the idiot who decided to live in Philadelphia and work 20 min from NYC. However what this is, is an excuse. That until I adjust, the phrase "spotty at best" pretty much describes me. Words are a struggle, taking me 3 days to draft and write an e-mail to a friend(hope I didn't ramble too much). Work is slow, and luckily I won't have anything too intense for a while; planning for a program months away and unjamming a copier 23 times in one day isn't too mentally intensive. Basketball tonight was like a slow motion dance where my mind couldn't make my body catch up to the events happening around me.

I'd like to adjust soon, if that's alright with life, that is...

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Stories, but no time

So, while my life speeds along and I actually accumulate things that I can pretend are worth writing about... I tide you over with a philosophical cartoon, on the purpose of life. Coincidentally, or maybe not so, this has been a big concept on my mind right now, or at least one of two (the other being the oh so simple yet oh so complex question"Who am I?"). Enjoy!


We've got a system of schooling which gives a completely different impression. It's all graded, and what we do is we put the child into the corridor of this grade system, with a kind of "C'mon, kitty kitty kitty!". And you go to kindergarten, you know, and that's a great thing because when you finish that you get into 1st grade. And then, "C'mon, 1st grade leads to 2nd grade!" and so on. And then you get out of grade school and you go to high school and it's revving up, the thing is coming, then you're gonna go to college, and by jove, then you get into graduate school, and when you're through with graduate school you go out to join the world.

And then you get into some racket where you're selling insurance. And they've got that quota to make! And you gotta make that! And all the time, the "thing" is coming! It's coming! It's coming, that great "thing", the success you're working for. And then when you wake up one day, about 40 years old, you say, "My God, I've arrived. I'm there." And you don't feel very different from what you always felt. And there's a slight let-down because you feel there's a hoax.

And there WAS a hoax. A dreadful hoax. They made you miss everything… by expectation. Look at the people who live to retire, who put those savings away. And then when they're 65, they don't have any energy left, they're more or less impotent, and they go and rot in a . . . "Senior Citizens Community".

Because we've simply cheated ourselves the whole way down the line. We thought of life by analogy with a journey, with a pilgrimage, which had a serious purpose at the end, the thing was to get to that end, "success" or whatever it is or maybe heaven, after you're dead. But we missed the point the whole way along. It was a musical thing and you were supposed to sing, or to dance, while the music was being played.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Nights like these

What does one do, when the words won't come, the spirit won't rest, and the body won't sleep?

Looks like for me, it's having an open blog window sitting on my desktop all night long, pace mentally and physically, and I don't.

Happy Monday.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

I love Germans... and other various happenings

It's 3:30am and in the past week I've had enough meat and beer to kill a small elephant. Seriously, I'm not trying to stereotype an entire culture, but the 5 Germans that I've spent time with this past week really do live on beer, bread, meat, and cheese. Like, woah. Just this weekend, we've gone through almost 7 or 8 pounds of London Broil steak, and 4 cases of beer(not counting what we had out at bars). If you're thinking, "wow, that sounds really excessive" you're right. It is excessive, but lucky for my body 2 have left already, 2 leave tomorrow, and that leaves only one German here until the middle of April.

Besides the 'blitzkreig' on my digestive system, it's been such a blast having them here. M has been home on spring break, Surfer just got back from a stay in costa rica(for surfing), and since almost all the Germans have been friends of GC's he's been around all the time too. The cool thing about that, is that all 4 of us took an extensive amount of German in high school (personally, German 1,2,3,4,and AP, as well as a 201 and 301 in college, while both M, Surfer, and GC have spent a minimum of 6 months in Germany at one time or another in addition to the classes in school) So we'll be sitting around talking, or huddling by a bonfire to keep warm(like tonight) and spend 70% of the conversation all speaking in German. I've used my German more in the last two weeks then I have in the last two years combined and the improvement I can hear in myself is quite refreshing. I know that I've lost sooooo much having not spoken it often, but it's also coming back much quicker than I expected.

In other, non-German related news... the Intranet I have been developing since November finally went live on Thursday!!! It's still a bit sparse and a little rough, but it's up for testing and the scores of suggestions that I hope to get for content. It wasn't without it's glitches though. So, one of the things my boss's boss (the one who assigned me this project) wanted was a way for the counselors to all communicate with each other and have an interactive calendar for events they want to let other counselors know about. So I did my research and found an module for the PHPBB2.0.23 bulletin board/forum program. Great, it does everything we wanted and we couldn't ask for more. Well, I get the message Thursday freaking morning, that the servers we're hosting the Intranet on, are not allowed to have the language PHP installed on them. That forum, is made entirely in PHP. About 20 minutes later, I have a 4 page sheet on my desk outlining all the languages and programs that are either preferred, accepted, or denied. Would this not have been helpful for me to have oh... say... back in NOVEMBER!!!! I told boss's boss that he can forget about his counselor communication method for the foreseeable future until I find something else that will work. Luckily for me, he's also a geek like myself and knew exactly how stupid it was for them to refuse to install PHP and didn't blame me for it in any way.

After work on Thurs my boss, MJ, and I all went out for a few drinks to celebrate MJ's birthday. It was a lot of fun even just the 3 of us. We all get along really well, both in a professional and personal environment. I'm sure though, that we looked like quite the odd gathering, a man almost in his 50's with kids starting college, a woman in her 30's with a guide dog, and a 24 year old just getting started. Personally, I think my boss just wanted to hear stories of MJ and I when we were in college so he had an idea what his daughters were actually doing while they were away at school, especially since I've spent weekends parting at the school his eldest now goes to.

Saturday(technically today), I'm taking my mother to see a play of Macbeth staring Patrick Stewart(Captain Jean Luc Piccard/ Professor X) in Brooklyn. It will be my second time going and I'm so very excited.... again. The first time was utterly amazing, and I look forward to any more nuisances that I can pick up on this time around.

Sunday we'll undoubted do our traditional hunt for plastic, money filled easter eggs. We've done it every year as long as I can remember, and I still find it amazing that my father can hide those eggs in the same room for 10 years and my brother and I still usually have trouble finding the last few. After dinner then I head back to Philly, just about for good. I've got monthly train passes for April from Philly, basketball and indoor soccer leagues(kickball was canceled much to my dismay) start in just under 3 weeks, and I'd like to actually spend some time living in my apartment and city. Wednesday E and I are headed to a 76ers game and at some point the last German and GC are coming in to hang out and see the bars... I mean... sights :-)

Sunday, March 16, 2008

A Night To Remember...

Tonight, I learned a lot of things. I learned that there's a reason that I'm not someone who can just talk to people at bars and walk home with numbers... or more. That's just not me, and that's alright. Tonight, I finally became ok with that. 97% of the female population at bars, really just aren't my type of person. And that's alright. I don't know if anyone knows how good it finally feels for me to feel that way.

I learned that there's a reason that I learned German in school. I spent the night talking half in German and half in English and found myself very comfortable in both. That means a lot to me. It means that the 7 years that I spent studying it in school weren't for nothing. That there are over 100 million more people in the world that I can communicate with in addition to those who speak English, and that's absolutely awesome.

I learned that the first and only individuals who were female whom I talked with at a bar and actually hung out with after the bar closed, were German. That just trying to speak their language was so much more than the average person and that made a difference. I was encouraged to speak as much German as I could, even as broken and random as it was. Anything was so much better than nothing.

I learned that I was a good kisser. Yes, that's all that happened and frankly, that's all that was appropriate to happen. I'm not your average guy who brings people home to whatever, that's unquestionably not me. Maybe it's the most superficial of the things that I learned, but it makes a difference to me. It's one thing to think that I'm good, but it's quite another to be told quite certainly that (at least according to her opinion) I certainly am, and that one day "I will have a lucky girlfriend who will enjoy my kissing good". I think that made me feel the best about myself that I've felt in a long time.

I was told that one day I'm going to find a good girl, someone who will appreciate how nice I am and that it will mean a lot for her to be with me. Now, anyone who knows me, knows that this is my deepest wish. If I want nothing else in this world, that's what I want. Someone who's with me for me, and truly loves me, and my optimism and sensitive completes our relationship. Someone who I can build a friendship, and relationship, and life with; someone with whom I can share an unconditional love that transcends any obstacle. Call me a hopeless romantic, I don't care. That's what I want and I won't settle for anything less.

I realized tonight that I've still been on the path of finding myself since I've been un-engaged. Yes, for those of you who didn't know, I was engaged for almost 2 years and I've been spending the last 2 years dealing with that relationship and finding myself. I've been learning and growing for a while now, but can't remember a jump in understanding like this ever before. I'm so glad that we went to Fedo tonight and met everyone we met. The were like emissary's to me and there wasn't a more perfect time for them to fall into my life.

I learned, that for as much as an optimist in though that I am, I now know that everything is going to work out for the best. I feel completely reassured that I will find "her" whomever or wherever she may be. I feel a weight off of my spirit and I'm can't wait to let it soar and find what it may.... I don't care how cliche it sounds, sometimes we just feel something that can't be explained in any other way than using one, and oh well. I'm closer to being at peace than I have in a long long time....

The shadows fade into the light
I am by your side,
Where love will find you.
What about now?
What about today?
What if you're making me
All I was meant to be?
What if our love
Never went away...

Daughtry"What About Now"

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Are pictures worth a thousand words?

Here’s how it works:

1. Go to www.photobucket.com
2. Type in your answer to the question in the “search” box
3. Use only the first page
4. Copy the html and paste for the answer. (For Wordpress [not sure about other hosts] you’ll have to click on the Code tab and paste, not Visual.)


1. What is your relationship status?

the one

2. Who is your celebrity crush?

3. Who is your favorite band?

Bryan Adams

4. What is your favorite movie?

Hot Fuzz

5. What kind of pet do you have?


6. Where do you live?


7. Where do you work?

8. What do you look like?


9. What do you want most in life?


10. What do you drive?


11. What is your favorite tv show?


12. Describe yourself:


13. What is your name?

14. What’s your favorite candy?