Tag: sketches

Sketch 42

It’s been a week of changes.  Last Wednesday about a half hour into work, I received a call from security/reception about the arrival of a new temp for the guy I was assisting.  I of course had no idea about the pending arrival, and he wasn’t in the office yet.  It turns out, I was being replaced.  The temp agency was supposed to have called me the night before, but for whatever reason had failed to do so.  But basically, during the course of the day, I found out that it would be my last day.  At least I had time to make sure I had all my personal belongings.  I had been a little worried after the other executive that I had been assisting left the company and finally those fears were realized.

The temp agency did get to work quickly on finding me a new position.  Its with the same company, but at a different location.  The position pays a little more, but the commute is much further.  I did however figure out that I can take one bus from my house to work…so that’s something I’ll keep in mind.  The new position is as a “Planner” in the Global Supply Chain department.  Basically, I’m pulling reports and moving inventory from the US to other countries and vice-versa.

Saturday, it was finally time for my install appointment with AT&T U-Verse.  U-Verse is AT&T’s version of FIOS (from Verizon).  It is a little different than FIOS in that it is only Fiber to the Node, which means it utilizes the standard copper wiring from the neighborhood node.  This cuts the deployment costs for AT&T, but also limits the bandwidth to the end-user.  (Verizon FIOS is fiber to home and as a result will have more available bandwidth to the end-user.)  So far I’m liking the service, the wireless router puts out enough signal that it reaches back to my room more reliably.  One interesting feature with the DVR for the TV, is that you can schedule shows online.  While I could do this on my old ReplayTV DVR back in the day, there was a 24 hr advance scheduling required.  With the U-Verse DVR, the scheduling was instantaneous (or at least quicker than it took me to walk from my room to the living room to check it).

I had lunch with a friend in Thai Town on Sunday, my first trip to Thai Town proper (I’d been to three of the Thai restaurants on Melrose or Little Thai Town).  The food was good, though they did keep the spiciness to “American” spicy levels.  Next time I’ll have to remember to ask for “Thai Spicy.”

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Sketch 41

Well I am more or less settled into my new apartment.  Most everything is unpacked and with the addition of a new dresser from IKEA on Saturday, things are pretty much put away.

The weekend was pretty busy and full of food.  On Thursday night, dinner at El Cholo.  Friday was dinner at Pizzeria Mozza.  Breakfast on Saturday at The Griddle (I had a 2-Stack of the “Tis the Season” pancakes…which are made with pumpkin pie filling in the batter).  Dinner on Saturday was my first trip to The Counter, a build your own gormet burger place.

Mozza was excellent.  Fried Squash Blossoms filled with Ricotta for an appetizer.  I had a pizza with house made fennel sausage, bacon and salami for the main course and then the Butterscotch pudding for dessert.  It was my second trip to Mozza, and I think the pizza is really good, however I think Apizza Scholls in Portland still gets my vote for best pizza.

The Counter, was ok, but I wasn’t that impressed.  Basically you get to choose your toppings on your choice of patty (beef, turkey, vegetarian).  There is a wide variety of toppings to choose from and the price of the burger isn’t that outrageous (though still on higher end of things – $8.25 for a 1/3 lb burger with 1 cheese, 4 toppings, and 1 sauce).  On paper, pretty good idea.  In practice, I found the toppings to be over done (as in too much).  I got the beef patty with blue cheese, mixed baby greens, sprouts, and honey mustard and bbq sauce.  It was good, but there was too much blue cheese on it, which kinda overpowered the rest of the burger.

On Monday, I finally replaced my mobile phone with the new Blackberry Pearl Flip.  I was a little torn about getting an iPhone 3G, but decided that the cost of the service on AT&T was too much, especially when I could get a Blackberry on T-Mobile for about $30 less a month.  So I stayed with T-Mobile.  So far I like the phone.  I’m still getting used to the Blackberry software…and its definitely not an iPhone in terms of its media and web handling…but it’ll work for me.

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Sketch 40

Well much of last week was taken up with finishing up packing and getting ready to move on Saturday.  The move went well…I’m still far from being unpacked completely, but I’m getting there.

I went to the Oregon/USC football game Saturday night.  Wasn’t such a good game for the Oregon fans…but I still had fun at the game.

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Sketch 39

It’s been a heck of a week.  Two more major banks have fallen (or at least been sold off at a discount).  The White House and Congressional Leadership have proposed a financial bailout package, that failed when it went to the House floor for a vote, and the first presidential debate happened (a draw for the most part).

In my neck of the woods…I had my car towed to the mechanic to find out what the damage would be from the car troubles I mentioned in my previous post.  Turns out it was the more expensive of the two options the mechanic mentioned over the phone.  So I had to call my dad to see if he could spot me the repairs for a few weeks while I deal with all the moving expenses.

Not much else has been going on as I prepare to move to my new place this coming weekend.  I did catch a screening of The Lucky Ones (another screening presented by Creative Screenwriting Magazine).  A nice take on the road trip movie and the disruptions of military life on families.

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Sketch 38

Sometimes I feel like I’m doing nothing, even though I feel like I’m quite busy at the same time.  I think I’m just at one of those points where I need to get away from the city again…but I won’t be able to until after the pending move.

Friday night I finally made it to Tropic Thunder.  Funny, funny movie.  Go see it.  Even if you normally can’t stand Ben Stiller movies.  This one is good.

Saturday, I headed down to Mr. Pocket’s in Manhattan Beach to catch the watch party for the Duck game.  Amazingly enough, the game (UO vs. Boise State), wasn’t on TV except for the Oregon’s local production.  Because of a new TV rights deal, Oregon games not carried by the Pac-10 contracts (ABC/ESPN, FSN, and VS.) are aired on the new Comcast Sports North West (also the new home of the Portland Trailblazers).  The problem with this is that since CSNW is owned by Comcast, most of the other cable/satellite/etc providers, do not carry the channel.  Normally, this would mean we were out of luck for watching at the bar, but the folks at Mr. Pockets hooked up the streaming feed from the internet, so we could watch it live after all.  The game was good (in the end), even though we lost.  Oregon played pretty cruddy for 3 quarters and its hard to win games like that (even though we almost came back).

I spent some time going through things in preparation for packing on Sunday.  Nothing is packed yet, but I’m pretty much ready to pack.  Just waiting on the rental agreement from the landlord to sign and I’ll be completely official.  I’ve already started changing my address with the various powers that be.

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Sketch 37

Oh my…its been a busy week.  Which explains why I’m a couple days behind this weeks sketch.

Most of the business comes from having to find a new apartment.  In the end, I saw nine different places.  I liked four of them (well I actually liked a fifth place, but the other people wouldn’t have been a great fit).  I’m moving into a place that is Mid-City, so pretty much right between the current location of my office…and the future location of the office.  I’m not sure exactly what there is within walking distance to it…but its pretty centrally located otherwise.

Saturday, my friend had a birthday celebration at her house in Whittier.  We were celebrating a bunch of us who had birthday’s at the beginning of the month (including me).  There was scuba lessons, football watching (Oregon pulled out a squeaker), lots of conversations, and millions of bubbles.  It was a great time (and totally worth the drive to Whittier).

After church on Sunday, I had lunch at Papa Cristo’s, an LA institution that has been open since 1948.  Another LA landmark crossed off the list.

Tuesday, I went to a screening of Rachel Getting Married.  By the time I got there, the line was pretty long and I ended up sitting pretty close to the screen.  That ended up not being a good thing.  The movie featured lots of hand held camera work, which made for some jittery shots.  By the end of the movie I was feeling pretty nauseous.  This coupled with the fact that it could have used to be about a half hour shorter (at least) meant that I bolted as soon as the film was done (again skipping the Q&A session).

I took my car into the shop on Wednesday morning.  My car is interesting, because it has a vacuum system that controls the “power” locks as well as the engine cut of switch.  Well somewhere in the system there was a leak, which was causing the engine not to shut off when I turned off the car and removed the key.  This wasn’t a huge deal for awhile, as there is a cutoff switch on the engine itself, so I only needed to pop the hood and press the switch.  At least until the little tab that helped un-latch the hood broke over the weekend.  Suddenly opening the trunk involved a little more work (and needle nose pliers).  Anyway, I took it in to see what it would take to fix it and get an oil change.  Well it turns out, that I also needed new brake pads and rotors.  So that was almost $450 I wasn’t expecting to be spending.  But again, I can’t really complain, my friend did give me the car.  Picked up the car this morning and the car shuts off as its supposed to do.  Right now the “power” locks don’t work on the right side of the car, but I can get that fixed later.

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Sketch 36

Well of course the big news of the week is that I have to find a new place to live.  Now that I’ve got a working computer at home, I’ve been scouring the listings on craigslist for new apartments.  So far the pickings are slim, at least in the range I’d like to stay in.  All in all, its kind of a pain in the ass to have to find a new place right now.  Even if it was just another month past, I’d be in better shape for a move.

Friday night, I met a few friends at the Blue Palms Brewhouse to celebrate both mine and a friends recent birthdays.  I had Craftsman Brewing’s Black Sour beer and Victory’s FestBier.  Both were pretty good.

Saturday, I drove up to Santa Barbara to pick up a computer from a friend (Thanks Jen!).  Took the long way home on Highway 1 between Oxnard and Malibu.  Very nice drive, but can see why the 101 route works better.  It’s great to have such good friends (and to be back online at home).

Sunday, I went to the LA Greek Festival with a friend and had some Greek Food, which was pretty much the entire point of the festival as far as I could tell.

I’m thinking of checking out the LA County Fair this weekend…if I decide the drive to Pomona is worth it.

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Sketch 35

Ahh, Labor Day weekend.  Also, my birthday weekend.  Yes, I am now Double Sweet Sixteen.  My birthday was pretty low key.  I ended up just walking over to Miss T’s Barcade with a friend, playing some old school video games and having a couple beers.  Then we walked further down Western and got some Pho for dinner. 

Saturday, I went over to my friends place to watch the USC game (if you could call it a game).  I fell asleep before halftime and pretty much missed the second half of the game.  What I was looking forward to was the Oregon game later that night anyway.  For the fifth year in a row (a first for the series), Oregon beat Washington (the rival we dislike even more than Oregon St).  The defense looked really good and the offense looked good as well (especially for being so young).  Should be an interesting season.

Sunday after church, I met up with an old friend and his fiance, who recently moved down to Los Angeles from the Bay Area.  It was cool getting a chance to catch up on life and things.

It was kinda weird having Monday off for the holiday, I’m already used to being at work M-F now.  I went to a beach, and then just hung out with a friend later that night.

Work has been good this week.  My Asia boss has been in the office for a few days, so lots of work getting done while he’s in LA.

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Sketch 34

Well I seem to be having a string of luck with electronics lately.  On Saturday I came home from running some errands to a dead computer.  It was off, and the little light on the power button was flashing yellow.  Not good.  Anyway, I’ve picked out something to replace it…for the moment at least.  Its a Dell Inspiron 1525 laptop at Best Buy for $599.  Of course I need a couple weeks to come up with the funds to purchase it, so it’ll be at least Sept. 5th before I can get it.  At least I’ve got the web at work to check my email and stuff.

I went and saw Hamlet 2 on Sunday after church.  Kind of a ridiculous movie, but then that’s what I was hoping for.  The movie took its own sweet time to get going, but the last half of the movie was pretty funny.

With the lack of a computer at home meaning no DVD watching, I’ll probably be doing a lot more reading over the next couple weeks.  Should help me catch up a little in my quest for 52 books for 2008.

I met one of my friend’s mother and sister over the weekend as well.  That was pretty cool.  We all went out to eat at The Kettle on Friday night and then went over to my friend’s aunt and uncle’s place in Hermosa Beach for a BBQ on Saturday evening.

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Sketch 33

I received my first paycheck from the new job, which of course is pretty much already spent.  A large chunk of it went to the California Department of Motor Vehicles.  Yes, I finally officially own my car.  The fee was significantly more than what the DMV website said it would be.  It was the $165 usage tax that killed me.  Oh well, I get paid weekly for the time being, so its not like I have to wait long to get paid again.

On Saturday, I drove up to Santa Barbara for a friends birthday bbq.  It was nice to get out of LA, even just for the evening.  The bbq was pretty low key but still a great time.  One of the food highlights was my first experience with Ceviche.  This particular ceviche was made by one of my friends Peruvian friends, with halibut.  There were also homemade potato chips and exquisitely bbq’d tri-tip and chicken.  Oh, and maybe a beer or two.

Work so far has been good.  I’m still not completely sure about everything I’m supposed to be doing, but I’m learning more everyday.

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