“So unlike scabies…[unintelligible]…and I’m not sure if the dryer in my apartment building is hot enough. It might be allergies or it might not, but it’s driving me nuts. It itches like crazy!”
Archive for November, 2005
Another Thanksgiving come and gone, and I cannot express just how much it saddens me to be back at work this morning. We should have more 4-day weekends.
Wednesday night was a real nothing day at work. Most people weren’t even in, and those that were were not doing any actual work. Thus, Buddy and I fulfilled a long-time work dream: leaving at 4pm to go see a movie. We decided on Rent, which opened that day. It pretty much looked and sounded exactly like the musical, which is good or bad, depending on your perspective. That night I made the cornbread portion of the cornbread stuffing I was in charge of for Thanksgiving dinner. More on that later. We also finished watching
Thursday I headed over to John’s place a little after noon to start the Turkey Day festivities. And by “Turkey Day festivities”, I mean lots and lots of
Inbetween the face-melting guitar wailing, we did find some time to cook. Since we were expecting more guests than the eventual 4 of us, Yar recommended that I multiply the stuffing recipe by 1.5. It turns out that John didn’t have a container big enough to hold all that stuffing, which led to the legendary Tub o’ Stuffing. It’s a good thing the stuffing was tasty, cuz we’ll be eating it for days. Yar was in charge of the turkey, John made his “Awesome Mashed Potatoes” (recipe: 10 Yukon Gold potatoes, whole milk, and 1 John), and Rahul made a couple fancy desserts, including a pumpkin custard. Previous to Thanksgiving, Rahul and a friend of his from work decided that they would each try making the custard, take pictures of the results, and decide whose was better in a winner-takes-all essence-of-pumpkin competition. Here is our entry, and it looks pretty awesome, if I do say so myself. Gourmet Magazine, here I come. Rest of the pics are here.
Friday I ran some errands, then went with Domi to her cousin’s house for yummy Vietnamese food. Then it was home to play a few hours of
Saturday was some more errand running, then Yar came over to watch
Sunday morning I ran the Run to the Far Side 10k and came in 1629th out of 2578. My gun time was 1:04:21, but my real time was 1:02:36, (10:04 mins/mile), which is fast for me, so I was happy. Afterwards Dave and I met Yar for breakfast at this awesome place down the street from Yar’s apartment that has a $4.75 breakfast special with 2 eggs, corn beef hash, potatoes, 2 pancakes, and tea. Afterwards it was back to Yar’s place for some Geometry Wars (best game on the Xbox 360, hands down, and a bargain at $5.) Since the weather was ridiculously nice, Yar and I headed back to Golden Gate Park to play some tennis, and I wasn’t as completely sucky at it as I thought I was. That night after dinner and some Mario War, I watched
Now for something completely different. A few weeks ago, Buddy, Marc and I somehow got on the subject of how dog pee can kill your lawn. I mentioned that it is worse with female dogs because of their acidic pee. It was then that was borne the idea for the latest rap hit single: Bitches Killed My Lawn. It makes sense if you think about it — all these rap moguls are living in huge mansions now and can’t really rap about how hard life is on the streets, so they just gotta rap about what they know. Yo.
Edit: Yar sent this to me, and it’s awesome: The Speech Accent Archive.
A couple months ago, my manager suggested that I take some time off, so last week I spent a few days in Chicago visiting Nathaniel. This was my second time visiting Chicago, and this time I definitely won the weather lottery. Or maybe it was weather karma, seeing as it was 70 degrees when I left California. Whatever the cosmic influence, it was cold. And this is not just the spoiled Californian in me talking; even Nathaniel agreed it was unusually, face-hurtingly cold when I arrived Wednesday afternoon.
Since I hadn’t eaten that day, we stopped off at A Taste of Heaven, a coffee shop near Nathaniel’s apartment. That particular shop has been the center of some controversy due to a New York Times article about a sign on the door, which asks parents to control their children when inside. In the article, the owner is quoted as saying that most of the protesting parents are “former cheerleaders and beauty queens” who “have a very strong sense of entitlement.” Hee. The windows of the place are now covered with letters from people around the world, mostly in support of the owner, as far as I could tell.
Later that night we went climbing at the gym Nathaniel usually goes to, and it totally kicked my ass. Like, gym’s foot —> Sha’s ass. It was sad. Apparently the place is well-known for sandbagging (i.e. lowering) their ratings, but it was still a frustrating night.
Thursday Nathaniel had some meetings, so after a quick brunch at a neighborhood diner, I took the El down to the Field Museum, Chicago’s natural history museum. Since I was small, er, young, I’ve loved natural history museums, so I had fun. Among the highlights were Sue, the largest and most complete T-Rex skeleton ever discovered, and a nice special exhibit on Pompeii. Afterwards, Nathaniel met me at the museum and we had yummy sushi at Oysy. Though not particularly inventive, the sushi there was very tasty, especially the white dragon roll. Mmm… We followed our sushi gorging with a showing of Wicked, starring SNL’s Ana Gasteyer, whom I love.
When we arrived home, I got a special bonus prize for winning the weather lottery. Sometime during the day, the boiler in their basement exploded, leaving the apartment sans heat for the rest of my visit. Nathaniel was nice enough to let me sleep in his bed with his toasty comforter, but I gotta say, Chicago winters with no heat is decidedly not awesome.
Friday Nathaniel got out of his scheduled meetings so that we could go to the Museum of Science and Industry, which was very cool. One of my favorites was the exhibit on U-505, a German U-Boat captured during World War II. They had the actual sub in the building, and you could even go inside it. Very cool. My other favorite exhibit was the chick hatchery, full of fluffy fluffy chicks! Nathaniel and I had to literally tear ourselves away, lest we fill our entire camera memory cards with images of fluffy cuteness.
Friday night we had dinner with a bunch of Nathaniels’ friends at Sticky Rice, which Nathaniel calls “the best Thai food ever.” It was very very good, and had a lot of dishes I’d never had before. True to form, Nathaniel ordered way too much food, and I left feeling stuffed. After dinner, we headed over to the Neo-Futurists theater to catch Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind, a show consisting of 30 plays in 60 minutes. “Wha?” you say? Yeah, that’s pretty much the reaction I had. But it ended up being a lot of fun, and sometimes even thought-provoking. That is, when they weren’t pulling Christmas lights and Cheetos out of their pants.
Saturday we met up with Nathaniel’s friend Bill, and after several failed brunch attempts, eventually ate at Kitsch’n. After a quick stop to pick up Bill’s sweet new jacket, we headed over to Millenium Park. Apparently it was is not the bestest time ever to visit the park, because all of the fountain was off, and the underside of Cloud Gate was closed. It was still nice, though, and I got a few pictures there.
That evening we caught a showing of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, which I enjoyed a lot, despite not remembering a damn thing from the book. We ended the evening at a local Korean restaurant, where Nathaniel and I decided that we are very compatible eaters.
Sunday morning it was off to Midway to catch an early flight, and back to the warm, warm embrace of California. Thank you so much to Nathaniel to being a great host and an even better friend.
…another dollar. Or something. Last week I saw U2 at Oakland Arena for their Vertigo tour. The show was amazing as always, despite the fact that we were sitting in the Lazy Section, where the people around us were the last to stand up, and the first to sit down. During the concert, they put up a number to text your name to to show your support for The ONE Campaign and if you did, Bono texted you back, omg. Personally, I’m sure.
Later that week Florence invited me for another one of her Dumpling Extravaganzas. Despite being slightly sick, I did my best to contribute to the Xtreme Dumpling Consumption, but there were still tons of leftover. All of the dumplings Florence made were amazing, and she made another one of her signature tiramisus (tiramisi?) for dessert.
Saturday night we took out Matt and Walter for their birthdays. Which reminds me: Happy Birthday, Matt and Walter! Among other things, we got Walter some nice hardback comic book collections, which Justin and I kept “accidentally” picking up and reading. We also got Matt a TiVo so
we don’t have to see him as much he can record his favorite programs and enjoy them at his leisure.
I’ve been having weird dreams lately, including one where the Bond team had to take up arms to kill a bunch of people inside a museum (Erik and I got there late and were left with crappy muskets), and another where Rory from Gilmore Girls slapped me because I made fun of the way she talks. I think there were also ghosts.
This weekend my brother, sister-in-law, and Cutest Ever niece were in town. Saturday they came and picked me up, and we all went down to Monterey so we could take my niece to the aquarium. She really liked the otters as well as the Outer Bay tank (she would occasionally exclaim “Wow!”). While in the jellyfish exhibit, I had an encounter with a rude lady, and had to work hard not to dwell on it for the rest of the visit. Afterwards we had lunch at a diner down the street, where I witnessed firsthand the intense look of concentration my niece gets when she’s watching Sesame Street episodes on her video iPod.
That night it was back to the south bay for a surprise birthday celebration for Sanders and Manish (each of them though the party was for the other) that involved jumping them, saran wrapping them together, and taking them to dinner. Afterwards we went to Manish’s place for cake. When I left, I decided to go get gas, since I had been very low on gas for a couple days. The joke was on me, though, when my car died about a mile down the road. I called up Eric, and he and Manish came to my rescue with a can of gas. It ended up that the nozzle for the gas can was too big for my tank, so we had to use a very convoluted system that, at various points in time, involved a pen, a funnel, and a plastic cup. It resulted in a whole lot of spilled gas, but did get enough in the tank to get me to the gas station. I believe this goes on my list of Top Ten Stupidest Car Troubles, right after blowing out my tire by hitting the curb. But let this be a lesson to you, boys and girls: don’t ignore your gas light for three days.
Sunday morning I went up to the Ritz Carlton in Half Moon Bay to join my brother & fam for a most ridiculous brunch. This wasn’t no HoJo continental breakfast. This brunch had caviar, prime rib, sushi, roast lamb, lots of desserts, and lots of other yummy stuff. My niece quite literally stuffed her face with roast lamb before falling asleep at the table. My brother, being mired in the financial world, immediately tried to figure out how to maximize his brunch value. He eventually discovered that the paddlefish caviar was about $150/tin, so he zoned in on that. As we can see in the following graphic, brunch value increases with paddlefish caviar consumption:
Not satisfied with using the small blini to consume the caviar, we began to brainstorm other ways of maximizing caviar consumption. These included:
- Using a full-size pancake, topping it with caviar, then rolling it up and eating it. Paddlefish burrito!
- Using one of the Belgian waffles at brunch, and filling up each little pocket with caviar.
- Pouring out my nieces juice cup, filling it to the brim with caviar, and sucking it through the little plastic straw.
You’ll be relieved to know we didn’t actually implement any of these harebrained schemes.
After leaving brunch, it was off to the usual Sunday sports. Having only shortly before stuffed myself full of food, I had to sit out for a bit while we were playing ultimate, so as not to give my friends an unwelcome look at paddlefish caviar. Sports was followed by dinner at Maru Ichi, then Buddy came over and we watched
Recently I’ve come up with two million dollar ideas.
1) Fortune cookie advertisements. Instead of lucky numbers or Chinese language lessons, how about a line or two for your favorite movie or clothing line? It’s marketing gold, I tell you.
2) Now this isn’t so much a “million dollar idea” in the sense that I think it’s a good idea, but it would most likely not make any money. So if you’re like me and live alone or even with just a single rooommate, you often find yourself throwing out uneaten food from the fridge. My idea would be to have a grocery store where everything is portioned for one or two people. This way, no waste! Unofficially, it would also be a place for singles to meet each other. May Ling came up with a great name for it, too: Singles Market.
I won’t forget you all when I’m retired on a tropical island.
With monkey butlers.
Since I am too lame to do otherwise, here again is my week in review, in bullet-point form:
- Last week I had dinner with Buddy and Marc something like 6 days in a row. Thanks to the both of them for making sure I didn’t go hungry.
- Finally saw Flightplan. While not the best movie of all time, it was certainly worth the $0 I paid for it. Take that as you like.
- May Ling made me cupcakes. Mmm….
- Saturday, May Ling and Florence and I went to the city for a Day o’ Fun. First was the newly-reopened de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park. While their collection was nothign to write home about, the building itself was interesting. Crappy pictures forthcoming. After that was dinner at Kan Zeman on Haight, a quick layover at Kid Robot, before finally landing at Eric Lai’s place for a hybrid Halloween/wine and cheese party. Or in my case, a cheese party. While there, I saw Art and Elena for the first time in 2 or 3 years, which was cool.
- Found out I’m moving to the Lord of the Rings team in a couple weeks. It will likely be a ton of work, but it should be a really good experience.
- Went running Monday night for the first time in a couple weeks and it felt really, really good. I started off going down the street, then found myself wondering if Florence and May Ling were in, so I ran the 1 1/2 miles (or so) to their place and knocked on their door. They weren’t in, so I turned around and headed back, but decided I was hungry. So I ran to a little market near my old apartment, and got a couple tamales and a pineapple popsicle, before retruning home. All in all, a pretty nice workout.
- After aforementioned run, I decided to take a bath, something that I haven’t done in a long while. I was really excited and even added bubbles to the bath, and lit a candle that Babs had given me a while ago. With great anticipation, I got in the bath. But after about 5 minutes, I realized I was really, really hot, so I just got up and took a shower. Quite disappointing.
- Climbed a 5.10b last night. Woo!