Monday, March 23, 2015

Living in a hole

When I was younger1, I used to get mad at my parents for not remembering things. But now that I'm slightly older, I'm finding it hard to remember every single thing that I need to do or every single thing that has happened in my life. I don't think there's anything biologically different about my brain, there's just more going on in my life now. Like, did I remember to pay rent this month? Is all of my stuff frozen in my storage unit? What pair of shoes do I want to wear today? &c &c

As such, I like to write blog posts reminding my future self of things like bacon.

This time I'm telling my future self two things:

  • Never live below/above/near a bar
  • Never live at/below street level

The bar noise used to drive me nuts but I have sort of gotten used to it. The things that I can't stand are the people who get queued up waiting to get into the bar and stand by/outside my window. Then, there are the people who stand outside my window smoking and having inane conversations.

It gets worse though. Because I'm at street level I can hear people talking when they walk by. I can hear stupid drivers honking their horns. I can hear cars idling at the red light. I can hear obnoxious motorcycles rumble by. Traffic noise is the worst.

I need 26th floor apartment.

Someone should write a book on how to be an adult. But maybe these things only affect me because I'm an introvert2. The Internet has been trying to convince me that introverts function better with less fewer sleep.



1 Sarita started a story with these words..."When I was younger, I used to own a car.." It took me aback because when I think younger I think 5 or 12, not driving age.
2 That's a post for another day.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Adventure stories



In the airport on the way to Mexico I perused some of the books they had on the shelves there. This book, "The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay", caught my eye with its colorful cover. So when I got back I bought a copy of it and now I am thoroughly enjoying reading it during my morning/evening commute.

I'm now trying to come up with a reading list of (paired) adventure books. After this one, I'll (re)read "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" and "Huckleberry Finn."

After that I'm not sure what I'm going to read. I will have to do some digging on the Internet to find some more adventure books.

Mexico (addendum)

"Who stole the conch shell?"
"Piggy"

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Mexico

"You guys don't get it, it's a joke on buy 1 get 1 free"

"Don't worry guys I got this"

"Evil baby dinosaur"



Destination weddings are a lot of fun, especially at an all-inclusive resort. All-inclusive means you can start drinking margaritas at 9 in the morning with Marco. All-inclusive means you can order 3 entrees and all of the appetizers. All-inclusive means you can order as much room service as you want. All-inclusive means bottomless Tanqueray and tonics.

The wedding ceremony and reception were beautiful. It was a lot of fun catching up with old friends, meeting new people, and speaking lots of Spanish (I said a lot of "hola" and "gracias"). I learned a lot of new things. For instance, apparently a thing that Mexican bartenders do is chloroform people after they take a shot.

While we were obtaining a bottle of champagne from the bartender, Justin and I argued over whether or not a lady we met in the resort lobby had a Scottish or Dutch accent. I don't even remember how we started talking to her.

Here are a few notes to myself, in case I forget in the future:
  • Don't forget to pack sunglasses, sunscreen, or sandals. The resort gift store will try to price gauge you.
  • Don't lose the Mexican immigration form or else you will not be able to board the plane to leave the country. I unknowingly managed to keep mine.
  • Definitely take a red-eye to maximize the all-inclusiveness
  • Buy myself a pair of pink shorts
  • I got a mosquito bite on my ankle

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Pittsburgh

MC: How come you don't buy a house in Pittsburgh?
MC: I could.
MC: I thought about it
MC: I was advised against it by my father
MC: You need to live in a location for at least 5 years roughly for the investment to pay off i think
MC: because what you pay the first few years is mostly interest on the mortgage
MC: Right.
MC: and you don’t build much equity
MC: and i don’t make enough money for the interest deductions to be substantial enough to really benefit me in taxes i don’t think
MC: the closing costs on buying property is probably prohibitive for me right now
MC: and i’m not interested in the work of a fixer-upper at this point
MC: plus the costs of furnishing
MC: and i think it tends to arbitrarily tether you to a city
MC: when being mobile is probably beneficial for me at this point in my life
MC: so
MC: I'm pretty hungover

Thursday, February 5, 2015

California, here we come (again)



I'm out in California, again, for a few months. I'm really grateful to have friends who let me sleep on their couch while I was out here looking for a place to stay. That being said, sleeping on a couch that is shorter than me can be quite painful after 3 weeks. My neck/back and knees started to hurt after being curled up and I wasn't getting very good sleep. I'm making a new adult rule for myself which says that I should not sleep on a couch for an extended period of time.

I did finally find an apartment in SF though. It turns out that traffic anywhere in the Bay Area is awful and that a commute in the South Bay can be unjustifiably long.

Do you know those sitcoms where they live above a bar? Boom, I live below a bar.
Do you know those sitcoms where they live next to a coffee shop? Boom, I live next to a few.

Unfortunately I haven't had time to explore the neighborhood yet but I look forward to exploring the new neighborhood and its gentrification.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Accounting TV shows

It's been a while since I've done a full accounting of the TV shows that I've watched.

Scandal
How great is the phrase "Gladiator in a suit"? I lost interest after season 2, but for a little while is was nice, brain-dead television.

Leverage
Netflix has a way of recommending me shows that it knows I will mindlessly enjoy watching with great ships.

For DH:


Fringe
Surprisingly good for a JJ Abrams scifi procedural. It contains a very good amount of shipping, but I had to stop at season 4 because it got really bad.

Arrow
I'm not sure if I've talked about Arrow on here before. I'm a sucker for comic book shows (e.g. see Young Justice).

The Flash
See above.

The Blacklist
This is another one of those shows that I watch because the Netflix recommender told me to. How good is James Spader? Also, he's going to be in the next Avengers movie. And Denny Crane.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

New Gadgets


New iPhone 6


A bluetooth toothbrush. I'm going to have so many stats on my teeth.
"I was trying to brush my teeth with an apple and it was horrible. Horrible!"



Apple Health tracks my steps!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Monday, November 24, 2014

New vices

Here are a list of new things that I've come to enjoy in grad school:

1) Coffee
I only used to drink coffee as a sugar delivery mechanism. Now, I drink my coffee black and I've started to really enjoy the taste of it. I have to limit myself to only one cup a day though. I used sip it throughout the day from my coffee tumbler, but recently I've been pouring it into my mug and drinking from my mug. It's much more enjoyable and it makes me drink it a lot faster.



2) Beer
The taste of beer used to disgust me, but now I find it much more tastiful. Enough of my friends are beer snobs so I often drink craft beer and compare notes with them. My first couple years in grad school I would almost exclusively only drink darker beers and stick with porters and stouts. I've diversified my palette lately and have come to enjoy a good IPA. I really don't know anything about beer though and I mostly just like to throw around beer terminology, like hops.



3) (Red) Wine
My newest fascination is (red) wine. One day when I was buying groceries, I decided to buy a bottle of wine because I thought the cashier would judge me less if I were buying a classy bottle of red wine instead of a bottle of Captain Morgan or Gin. I have a janky $1 Trader Joe's wine opener so I'll have to order a better wine opener off of Amazon.



4) Gin
My Gin preferences are in some ranked order: Bombay Sapphire, Tanqueray, New Holland's Knickerbocker Gin (tastes like Christmas).

5) Whiskey/bourbon
I'm not going to pretend that I enjoy the taste of whiskey or bourbon, but we do occasionally go whiskey tasting when it is half off on Wednesdays.



Coffee and alcohol, isn't that the best description for grad school?

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Adult rule about bacon

I have a new adult rule: never make bacon at home.

Here are the reasons that making bacon at home is bad:
  • Lots of hot grease popping everywhere. It gets all of the stove and all over you.
  • It makes your small apartment smell like bacon for the next week (debatable as to whether or not this is a bad thing)
  • If you make the entire package at once, you will eat a lot of it.

So my new adult rule concerning bacon is that I will never make bacon at home. But when I go out to eat, I can eat as much bacon as I want. Quid pro quo.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

In which I take a detour to Colorado



(Colorado reminds me of Everwood)

I got back from Colorado last week for a conference. I don't know if I psyched myself up about the altitude. I couldn't actually tell if I was affected by the altitude or if I just thought I was affected by the altitude (I was sick at the same time). I definitely had to drink a lot of water though. I feel like they kept reminding us of this.

Fun fact: The New Belgium brewing company is based in Colorado (Fat Tire is brewed there). The hotel bar had 26 beers on tap. I think I'm becoming more of a beer snob. Though not as much as Denis who scoffs when I tell him that the only beer I have in my fridge is Stella and Sam Adams.

Finally, flying with noise-cancelling headphones is a new revelation. I don't know how I flew before or fell asleep on the plane. The difference with them on an off is like night and day. If I flew more often, I would say that it was totally worth buying these headphones.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Speeding

LJ: Crap, speeding ticket
LJ: 47 on a 25
Me: You should probably stop texting and driving
LJ: Now I need to find a lawyer
Me: I didn't get a parking ticket today even though I forgot to move my car
Me: That's probably why you got a speeding ticket.
Me: Karma
Me: I hope that makes you feel better.
LJ: ...

Thursday, July 24, 2014

That's ambitious, at best

If I had the intelligence/time/money and if I were ambitious, there are many things/organizations/entities that I would like to create. Imagine as if I were the Dave Eggers version of me. I would:

  • Write my semi-autobiographical memoirs. I wouldn't have anything interesting to say, but like I said, if I were a Dave Eggers version of me, I'd be able to make nothing sound interesting. Like "This is a picture of a stapler" or "Where is my lattice?!" The second one would be said in a Jack Bauer voice.

  • Make my own MMORPG. After all, even Curt Schilling wanted to do this. I wanted to do this in college but that fizzled out after a week or two. Also, Mark thought it was a stupid idea. More, recently, I ran this idea by Kee and he shared my enthusiasm for the idea (this is one upside of now having CS friends). 1

  • Have my own website. It would be something like a smaller Grantland 2or Politico. There would be about half a dozen of my friends as writers 3 and all the articles would strictly be just conversations about controversial or absurd topics like Obamacare, PEDs, or Twilight.4

  • (Co)-found a company and become a billionaire like Bruce Wayne. I guess this one is a bit more absurd, but, as usual, let's err on the side of absurdity.

  • Then, after I make billions, open my own coffee/beer shop. Because, if you have a billion dollars, why not be a hipster?

  • Also, start my own non-profit. That would be fun for at least a few weeks. I'd have to make one to see if it would actually be fun for longer than a few weeks. I have no logical reasons to think that this would be fun, it just seems fun; you're helping people, you're giving away lots of money, that seems fun. Also, then, when you go to all of the fancy art gallery openings that you'll be going to when you're a billionaire, you'll have something to talk about.



1 Imagine how much money Nintendo would make if they made a Pokemon MMORPG.
2 I bring this up because the current Grantland series on rom-coms is top-notch. I also bring it up because of that one time Ben told Allie I like watching rom-coms.
3 I did do this in high school with Josh, Clark, and Matt. We took ourselves too seriously though, but then again it was high school and who didn't take themselves too seriously. Or was that just me?
4 This actually wouldn't be that ambitious, if I had friends that is. ._.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Mid-afternoon hourlong walk (not quite as catchy as hourly midnight lunch)

Now that the winter of our discontent is over, I've been trying to take a walk during the day. In the summer, our office over-compensates for the heat outside and blasts cold air all day. The thermostat only has two modes: blast cold air or have no cold air. So occasionally I find it refreshing to get up from my desk and thaw. Also Jake reminds us every so often that sitting all day is hazardous to our health.1



When I go on my walk, I just walk around north campus. I like that there's a fountain on north campus. It's nice to just sit there and watch the fountain spew water.2 It's also nice that it's the summer and there aren't as many people around. It's unfortunate that there's not much more to explore up here.

I do like to aimlessly walk around3. When I lived in a more dense environment (i.e. cities like SF or Seattle), I would just get up and walk around the city. It's a good way to kill time and explore the city. I'm a big proponent of killing time, or maybe I just need a lot of time to myself. Or I'm going insane. One of those, or both.



1 Jake has made a makeshift standing desk and stands all day now; he has a family, so he has something to live for. The rest of us just sit.

2 I always found it odd that shopping malls have fountains in them.

3 Inside and outside of buildings. I probably should get a Fitbit so that I can compete with een.

A little blog post

  • KR sent me a postcard from when he was in a conference in Germany. It dawned on me that I should get a bulletin board to pin it and other cards I have to. My walls are completely empty, but it doesn't seem worth it to try to populate them as I'm going to be moving in a month. Maybe for my next apartment.

  • I feel like Saad because I'm currently sitting on my floor while working on my laptop. The only thing I remember Saad having in his room during college was a lamp. I'm assuming he must have much more now since he's married. But maybe not.

  • I have an odd infatuation with these GE energy efficient light bulbs. They're so bright compared to the $1 Ikea ones that I have. When I turn on a lamp with the Ikea bulbs in them, it's like a little night light (with a purple hue). These GE ones that I bought, give off a warm, orange hue when I first turn them on. Hmm, I need to start thinking things other than light bulbs.

  • I got MLB.TV with the express purpose of watching the Yankees. I also thought that I'd just watch other baseball teams too, like the west coast games after the Yankees game has finished for the day. It turns out that it's actually really boring to watch a team that's not the Yankees. I attribute that to the YES broadcast booth. I don't feel this way about other sports though. I've been thoroughly enjoying the world cup and, in general, I do enjoy watching soccer (except the MLS, which is awful). I enjoy watching the NFL1 just because I like watching the sport. The same goes for the NBA and college basketball.


1 I hate college football though. The skill of play is so bad.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Adult shirts

Because I cannot have adult conversations, I do not yet consider myself an adult:

Denis: I was going to wear a button down shirt today but I didn't iron it.
Me: (incredulous) You iron your shirts?
Denis: Only my button downs. Don't you?
Me: No, of course not. I don't even own an iron. (looks down at wrinkled shirt)