Mushy in the middle

routeIn an effort to get in better shape and to combat the high gas prices I’ve recently decided to start riding to work.  It’s good exercise and it’s actually a nice ride. 

The route takes me past some nice little sights, the Fremont bridge, some nice marinas (something I’ve taken a more active interest in since I’ve started working for the boat show) and the new south lake union park.  

I sat at the bridge yesterday watching some boats float through.  It was peaceful even though I had a terrible day, read yesterday’s post for information on that, and it was nice to be able to disconnect from everything.  Something driving doesn’t really give me the opportunity to do, but I’m glad for on the bike. 

I can hear myself breath, can smell more clearly the flowers on the way to work (some of which are my favorite kinds of roses) and just feel better at the end of the day.

An open letter to the state…

I hate the state department of unemployment. 

We pay into the “system” so we might have something to fall back on when we no longer have a job.  Of course I would now rather gouge my own eyes out rather then take money from the state system that we all pay into.  Why?  Because I’ve been notified that the state is going to be garnishing my wages to the sum of $350 a paycheck for the next three months.  They are under the impression that I defrauded them out of $1900 while I was unemployed and barley scraping by.  So I guess I’m back to barley scraping by for the next three months, good thing it’s summer and I can ride my fucking bike to work so I don’t have to waste money on gas.

Fuck you state, how dare you and I hope you burn for this.

Calling Doctor Jones…?

indy4 Went to see the fourth installment of the Indiana Jones franchise yesterday, I use the term franchise simply because that’s what it has become.  I laughed at the parts you should laugh at and at the end when the plot, that was so transparent it hurt, was reveled I said “holy shit they’ve jumped the shark!”  My best friend who was sitting next to me said “not only have they jumped the shark but they vaporized the shark!”  Right so you might have guess that I’m a little upset at Spielberg and Lucas for putting a movie together that screams “I want more money…”  I’m disappointed in the plot, the actors made the movie, but frankly they should have left well enough alone and said the third movie was a perfect ending to the trilogy.

Someone should remove George Lucas from a position to write or direct anything, he’s lost whatever respect I had for him and Steven Spielberg is heading there if he does one more fucking movie with aliens in it.

Chicago

Chicago (10 of 31)I just got back from Chicago, we had to attend a conference for people who are in our industry.  It was surprising the kinds of things we discussed and how open we all were in sharing information.  It’s not like we directly compete with each other, in fact we are all working towards keeping the industry alive and well so anything we can share that might work for others is good…  Right?

The time was spent between conference and fun, we had a drinks and dinner reception on Monday night.  Ended up having a fantastic dinner Chicago (17 of 31)and drinks at a little restaurant near the Richard J. Daley center (where the final chase scene of the Blues Brothers happens).  The food was fantastic, the wine was great and even the company was pretty good.

Tuesday we had more conference and then dinner at the Millennium Park Grill, the food was a little too rich for my blood, but good nonetheless.  We got to wander the park a bit before dinner and there are some pretty cool sculpture installations there.  Drinks afterwards found us at three different bars and my getting the phone numbers from a bartender whose thinking of moving to Seattle and another girl I was apparently chatting up for a good hour.  The last one I don’t remember all that well, but I do remember the girl who might move to Seattle, she was pretty in a punk kind of way…

Oh yeah and if I travel with B again I will insist she take some sort of valium or other type chill pill and I mean that in the nicest possible way…

Thanks Drink Planner for this list!

Guys, I hate to say it…but a lot of you are letting me down. More importantly, you’re letting yourselves and your gender down. Every time I go out to a bar and I see a guy with a purple or pink shot in their hand, a small part of Burt Reynolds’s mustache dies. When I venture out to a restaurant and I see a man with a martini that is any other color than clear, I am forced to say a small weeping prayer for the future of mankind. Now I don’t mean to turn this into a post strictly directed at guys, because ladies…this is of the utmost importance to you too. What a person drinks says quite a bit about who they are, and if the man at your side prefers drinks with umbrellas over ones with whiskey, well…you’ve got some serious decisions to make. So without further ado, I present:

1. Thou Shalt Learn to Enjoy Whisk(e)y – Bourbon, Scotch, Irish, Tennessee whiskey and every other form of the drink shall heretofore be your best buddy. You can start by mixing with soda at first to ween yourself into it if you need to (Jim Beam and Coke is a perfectly acceptable manly drink), but at some point you’re going to have to learn to drink the stuff on its own. It’s a complex, mysterious and brooding spirit, which are not coincidentally three things you as a man should also strive to be. This commandment is the most important, and the hardest to get through, which is why it’s first. If you can master the ways of Daniels, Walker, Dickel, Jameson and Glenlivet…the rest of this should be cake.

If she can do it, so can you, you big lady

2. There is No Such Thing as a “Chocolate Martini” – This has been said elsewhere many a time before, but it bears repeating. The only things that should be in a martini are gin (or a quality vodka), vermouth, and garnish like an olive or onion. Anything else, and you’ve made a grave mistake punishable by a lifetime of Grey’s Anatomy reruns.

3. Thou Shalt Not Drink a Frozen Drink – The ONLY exception to this is if you’re at the beach or on a cruise. Otherwise, stick to hunks of ice or chilled mugs to cool your drink. Alcohol is not meant to be drunk in smoothie form.

4. Thou Shalt Not Consume Drinks With Idiotic Gimmicky Names Meant to Cover Up How Girly They Are – So help me God, if I see any of you jackasses out there with a Sex on the Beach or a Screw Me Blue in your hands, I’ll slap it to the ground and eat your worthless soul so fast you’ll truly come to appreciate the phrase “life flashed before my eyes” like never before. You’re not fooling anyone. Just because peach schnapps has some alcohol in it does not qualify it as an alcoholic beverage. It has its place in the great wide world of booze, but mixed up with 18 other fruit-flavored alcohols and garnished with a paper umbrella and stupid name ain’t it.

5. Thou Shalt Learn to Appreciate All Forms of Beer – If Natty Light, Keystone and Coors are your idea of what beer is and is meant to be, you’re living your drinking-life like that of a child in sub-Saharan Africa. Bring that inner impoverished child into the “civilized” world and open your dry crusty wind-chapped eyes to the world of ambers, stouts, saisons, hefeweissens and the multitude of heavenly hops-angels just waiting to surround you and give you a glimpse of the Promised Land. While you’re still getting over your silly stigma that Guinness is a “heavy” beer and cringing at the thought of a slice of lemon in your Hoegaarden, the rest of us will be happily melting our brains away into oblivion. With the superhot hops-angels, of course.

Get used to it, Jack

6. No Worthwhile Woman Will Ever Be Impressed With How Much You Can Drink – Being able to funnel six beers at once or taking down an entire fifth of rum in one night may impress the shit out of your buddies, but no quality woman on earth will give a damn about how much you can drink. For that matter it’s really not worth even trying, as trying and failing will produce far more disgusting consequences than you ever bargained on. Let it be known: while some refer to alcohol as “Liquid Panty Remover”, puke is far better known as “Liquid Loneliness”.

7. It’s More Than Okay to Drink Wine – Knowing the name of a few good Cabernets and Pinot Noirs is a highly valuable thing. Inevitably in your life you’ll need to go to expensive restaurants for anniversaries, birthdays, and pet funerals… and knowing what’s good vs. what tastes like grape-flavored vinegar not only makes you look smart and sophisticated, but saves you from drinking grapes that taste like they were fermented in horseshit. Become familiar with the ins-and-outs of a few wines, and the impression you’ll make will be well worth it. Being labeled as “cultured” is never a bad thing…being labeled as “ignorant” always is.

8. It’s Worth it to Learn the Rules and Traditions of the Drinking World Before You Go Out Into the Wild (and Make an Ass Out of Yourself)Pro Tip: When drinking one of the aforementioned obligatory wines at one of the aforementioned stuffy and overpriced restaurants, do not sniff the cork. Check it for mold or odd discoloration, and then put it down…but do not sniff it like a damned country bumpkin. Pro Tip 2: Do not make a big show of popping the cork off a bottle of champagne. Hold a cloth or towel over the cork and catch it before it shoots into the ceiling. It’s the grown-up thing to do. There are a thousand small rules like these (or maybe “customs” is a better word?) surrounding the booze-life that knowing can be the difference between you looking like a showboating know-nothing jackass, or a refined gentleman of great taste and culture. The two mentioned here are a start, but take the time to learn what separates grown men from the forever-frat-boys and you’ll be more than a few steps ahead.

Welcome to Assholeville, population: YOU

9. The Way You Treat Bartenders and Waitstaff Says More About You Than You Know – I don’t mean to get all Jesus-y on you guys, but as the Good Book says, “That which you have done unto the least of these, you have done unto me.” And I can tell you, that’s exactly how a woman or prospective business associate will see it. Snapping, clapping, yelling, whistling or just general rudeness to someone waiting on you are a sure sign to anyone in your company that if they spend enough time around you, you’ll eventually treat them with the same selfish nonchalance and disdain that you treat those who are paid to be nice to you. And for crying out loud, TIP WELL. You have no idea how far this can take you.

10. Any Free Drink is a Good Drink – I know, this seemingly negates some of the previous rules, but hear me out. Not even mentioning the many economical reasons that you should never ever in your life turn down a free drink when offered to you (which essentially boil down to: YOU’RE NOT BUYING IT AND IT’S NOT POISON, SO WHO CARES!?!), it’s just plain RUDE to turn down a shot or drink purchased by someone else for you (unless it is, in fact, poison). They’ve not only put down their hard-earned dollar to buy you a taste of the good life, but they’ve also taken the social gamble of saying “Hey, this is a person who deserves a drink for saving babies/stopping (evil) moving trains/kicking my ass in Guitar Hero, and by golly…I’m going to buy them a beverage in public to show the world how noteworthy their accomplishment is!” That’s quite simply a proposition you can’t say no to. If you do, you’re a dick.

Much like the Bible, there are many more minor rules to the world of drinking, but these are the Big 10, the ones that in a general sense should guide you throughout your journey through this magical world of booze and keep you from temptation and harm. It’s a cold and frightening world out there, but by following these simple rules you definitely have a better chance of emerging unscathed.

This is a quoted post from the Drink Planner Blog.

Public Transit… How many ways can we fuck it up?

As a person who has traveled a fair bit I’m going to make mention of Melbourne Australia and it’s transit system, I even included a link.

http://www.railpage.org.au/railmaps/melbourn.htm

It’s a combination of light rail and street car, accidents are few and far between and ridership is huge.  The system on a whole works Beware of Tramsmuch like a star network, with the larger pipelines being serviced by larger “light rail” and the city and suburb traffic being serviced by street level trams.

Before I got to Melbourne I heard nothing but complaints from natives, but the reality is they have a system that works and while yes it could be better, it still works.  Go figure we as the independent Seattleites we are, can’t seem to look to other cities across the world and take the better parts of those systems and implement them here.

Street trams are better then buses as they use less fuel (diesel is still expensive and unless all buses move to electric then you’re not going to experience cost savings with a bus system for much longer), and if buses do move to electric then what’s the problem with replacing them with street cars at that point, since the only step you have to take to make the transition is to add tracks to the road?

Beware of CarsWe could have a system that works, but we seem to be intent on making a system that doesn’t and there really seems to be no end in sight.

Fuck this place I’m moving to Melbourne where yes they complain about the transit system, but at least they have one that makes sense to me!

Sometimes I wish I could just fly away…

I don’t really know what to say.  I had a “talk” with my boss today about how I was standoffish when she first met me, and how some of the people and vendors we have to work with don’t appreciate it.  Something about how I seemed to look down on how they do things and how others do things I think is wrong.  Well I’m the first to admit when I don’t know something about the work I do, it’s just not very often.  There is no ego in that statement, it’s just the truth.  I’ve done it so many different ways and seen it done poorly and done right that you can begin to get a feel for how things should be done.  I’m not say they’ve doing it wrong and as soon as I step in they need to do it my way, I’m just saying I see where we can improve our systems and make it run smoother and Graffiti Play-1better in the long run for everyone.  I get a little tired of hearing someone say “we’ve always done it this way” when I see something that could and should be improved and hasn’t ever been looked at as something to improve.

It always amazes me when a fresh set of eyes sees something I’ve been staring at for years and goes, did you know you can do it this way and suddenly the problem I was always complaining about suddenly goes away?  It’s a humbling experience to have someone, doesn’t matter what there age, say “you can do it this way and your life will be easier.”  and when it is, well sometimes the word fuck comes out of my mouth, but I go ahead and add it to my toolkit for next time and I make sure to thank the fresh set of eyes for helping me out.

So why can’t some people accept that?  I don’t know.  It took me a long time to get to the point where I could accept criticism without going apeshit.  I guess I’m growing up, or I’ve just stopped caring so much what other people think.  I know I’m good at what I do and if others are unable or don’t see that then it’s there problem not mine.