Sunday, January 8, 2017


"5 of my friends got engaged this year."
"Wait, who?"
"Oh you don't know any of them...wait, you know all of them..."

2016 was a long, long year for me.
I traveled a lot. my doctorate (yay!).
...moved to New York.
...started a new job.
...found an apartment in New York. my first pieces of real furniture.
...slept very little.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

The sprint towards the end of the year

Callback to Rick and Morty

I always find myself the busiest during this time of year. You can probably tell as my blogging throughput has slowed to a trickle.

I'm ready for 2016 to be over. It's been a really long year (cue listening to A Long December).

New couch

I'll probably do a year-end blog post like I normally do but for now I'll enjoy the last month of 2016.

Hipster Brooklyn

Lens: AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G
ISO 1100

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Geography is hard

Apparently, I found out that Savannah is just south of South Carolina.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Friday, October 28, 2016

SlingTV is the best for sports.

While the baseball regular season was going on, I wanted to watch Yankees game. But since I'm in market now, I couldn't watch them through I ended up trying out SlingTV; they were offering a 7-day free trial and I heard that you could get local channels if you got the expensive "blue" and "orange" package (admittedly the "blue" and "orange" package labeling is very confusing). Timur had actually tried it out earlier when it first came out but the service was horrible.

The blue + orange package ended up being $40/month, which is a bit pricey, but at the same time it's comparable to cable, which I'm not paying for. Because I was paying for the blue + orange package, I was able to get YES and watch the Yankees games. The new Apple TV app is pretty nice. I haven't had any problems with streaming and it's been a really smooth experience.

It turns out SlingTV is the best for sports. I was planning on canceling it after the Yankees season was over, but I have kept it since I'm able to watch practically all of the sports that I want.

I get to watch:
  • The baseball playoffs. Included are TNT, TBS, FS1, and FOX (that's pretty impressive).

  • NFL. I get FOX, NBC, ESPN. Unfortunately no CBS, but I can get that over the air with my antenna.

  • (Some) College football. Whatever is on ABC and ESPN. I wish they had the ability to add BTN, then I could watch Michigan football games AND their basketball games (which is really what I care about).


So, in conclusion, SlingTV is great for sports watching.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Is there a worse feeling than cold feet?

"People paying for white noise is literally the most first world thing I can think of"

It dropped about 30 degrees F this weekend. Friday night I had the window open with a fan going. I actually just bought the fan too because I wanted to generate some white noise while I slept.

I know it's officially cold now because my toes are always cold. I have bad blood circulation so my fingers and toes get really cold in the winter. My toes in particular. So now begins the other half of the year where my toes are always cold.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

I like watching this clip before I go running

It's also why I buy UnderArmour. #teamunderarmour

Friday, September 2, 2016

Everyday Commute

My commute these days isn't that long.

It's about 15-20 minutes on the subway. A bit shorter if the train shows up right as I get to the station (like it did on last Friday). A bit longer if the train is delayed by a lot and I have to take another line (like it did last last Friday).

I've been slowly getting accustomed to my commute where I'm at the point where I know what stop I have to get off on and don't have to be on the edge of my seat, worried that I'm going to miss my stop.

Even though it's a short commute, it's a bit annoying not having any cell phone coverage on the subway. I pull out my phone and there's nothing really to do. Doing anything on it requires Internet service.

So I've taken to the habit of Instapaper-ing news or magazine articles that I've been finding on the Internet. Instapaper is an app that lets me save websites that I find online and downloads them to my phone so I can read them offline. It's a super useful app (though I don't know how long it'll be around for because they just got bought by Pinterest :|).

It turns out that my commute is an optimal amount of time for consuming the trove of Internet articles that I've accumulated over the previous few days of Internet browsing.

Saturday, August 27, 2016


Yup, I ordered another TV online. I was going to stop by Best Buy and pick one up and bring it back to my apartment. But the idea of going to the store and dragging a giant TV back in a taxi was too much work for me.

So, now that I have a TV, I've been watching a lot of the Little League World Series. And I've been enjoying it a lot.

  • It's the purest form of baseball. The kids love playing the game and show so much emotion playing it.
  • Minimal commercialism. It's everything that college sports should be, but the NCAA is evil and college athletes are jerks.
  • At the same time, Williamsport looks like an awesome venue. I would have loved to play on a field like that when I was playing Little League.
  • Instant replay is done right here. MLB needs to adopt instant replay like this.
  • Love that they list the kids' favorite emojis.
  • The ESPN trio of Karl Ravech, John Kruk, and Aaron Boone have been surprisingly entertaining.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016


MC: I have a Pinterest now!
SU: MC when did you become so materialistic?
KR: lol

I'm slowly filling my apartment with new furnishings. I got rid of all of my furniture when I moved from Michigan. Most/all of my old furniture was from Ikea and falling apart so I donated/threw out most of it.

This is a filler post for now. More to come in a later post when I have things.

Monday, August 22, 2016

In principle, I like the idea of camping

I like camping gear:
  • Tents
  • Rain coats
  • Backpacks
  • Water purifiers
  • Flashlights
  • Sleeping bags
  • Water bottles
I like the idea of planning camping trips and long running canoe trips.

I like the idea of retrofitting a van into a mini-camper and going on a road trip and camping in random national wild areas.

I have never gone camping before in my life.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

I am a view snob

Last photo of my view, I promise. I was just going through photos on my computer and found this one from when I moved in.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

And this is the last time I order a TV online

Coast to coast to coast

A Google self-driving car (such Silicon Valley)

This has been my travel schedule for the past few weeks: two weeks in the Bay Area for training, one week back in NYC, and then two weeks back in the Bay Area. I'm finally back in NYC for good now.

I've done enough travel in my life now that travel is exhausting. It used to be fun and exhilarating; I set my seat preferences in Expedia to be the "window" because I always wanted to watch take off and landing. Now, on my most recently flight out of NYC, I was asleep even before we took off.

There are a few things that I've discovered about traveling from NYC.
First, it adds a bit of time flying to SFO from NYC, compared with flying from DTW. Usually I would fall asleep on the plane and wake up about half an hour from landing. Now, I have an extra hour and a half to kill.

Second, getting to and from JFK actually takes a while. On one of my treks back from JFK I was stuck in a cab for over an hour.

For one of my round trips I flew Jet Blue. I really want to like Jet Blue, but their seats are so uncomfortable. My butt was hurting from sitting on their hard seats for so long. I'll prefer not to fly Jet Blue again, though they did have above average leg room.

It was nice to be in the Bay Area again, especially for two prolonged trips. I got to hang out with a bunch of my really good friends. It's a weird feeling, traveling to a place that's not your home but feels so familiar.

But now that I'm back in NYC, I have to actually make it feel like home and furnish my apartment.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Beer in a hotel room

I'm glad I'm not a consultant where life is just travel all of the time. Or else life would be a lot like this; in a hotel room, drinking beer.

Luckily, this trip is almost done and I'll be back in NYC at the end of the week. Finally.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

This view though

I really need a tripod to do this shot right though.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Day 1 of fitness tracking

I bought a fitness tracker. It was a bit of an impulse buy but I needed one because my heart constantly feels like it's going to explode. So I reasoned that I needed a fitness tracker with a heart rate monitor to reassure me that my heart is actually (not) going to explode.

I got up this morning and took the 5 up to the Union Square Best Buy to pick up my order and then walked to work. NYC is actually awesome for detours like this; it added hardly any time onto my commute to go to Best Buy before work. It helped that the 5 is an express train.

I got the Garmin Vivoactive HR. It has a heartrate monitor and GPS, so I can track my runs without my phone. It took forever to get set up with my phone. I need to turn off practically all of the notifications from my phone or else it'll drive me insane.

It's going to take some getting used to wearing a watch again. I feel so constrained having something on my wrist all day. I'm not sure I'm going to get used to it. We'll see how it feels after a week and if I'm still wearing it after a week. I need to wear it for a week or so just to make sure my heart rate is normal.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Underarmour is my official footwear of choice

My basketball shoes are UA and now I have a pair of running shoes/EDW (every day walk). The Speedforce Speedform on these are actually amazing.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Playing with photography

I recently bought a 35mm prime lens1 for my camera. I bought a camera that was on sale last year and I haven't figured out how to use it yet. I've wanted a DSLR camera for a long time and since I've gotten it, I haven't used it much. I shoot on "auto" most of the time and it produces much nicer photos than what my phone can do.

I'm using the prime lens as my "everyday lens,"2 which means it's my primary lens, so when I go somewhere I only carry this lens. Its focal length matches that of the human eye, so it'll capture photos at roughly what you see. I've found that this lens in particular takes really good portraits of people. Shooting with a prime lens also simplifies part of using a DSLR. There's no zoom (since it has a fixed focal length). I still shoot almost exclusively on AUTO but I do sometimes play with the aperture mode. I found this guide to be extremely useful and helpful.

Being in the city3 is great for photography since there's always something to photograph, like a building, a landmark, or people. It's also great because you can just blend right in with the crowd and no one really cares if you're taking a photograph.

1 I did an in-store pickup at Best Buy, which was actually really quick and convenient. I've never done an in-store pickup before.
2 This nomenclature is borrowed from EDC or "Everyday carry."
3 If you're in the United States, there is only one "city" and thus it can be referred to simply as "the city."