Friday, December 2, 2011

Top Ten

Okay. I'm a baby about being sick...I know this. Here are the top ten reasons I'm mad about getting an awful cold this week:

10  It's way too early in the month to be walking around looking like Rudolf, the red-nosed reindeer. I sure as heck don't plan on leading a world-wide (minus the Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu and otherwise non-Christian countries) aerial sleigh ride for some fat guy with my "nose so bright."

9  "Plop plop, fizz fizz..." I think I have an Alka-Seltzer Plus hangover (if that's even possible).

8  Watching the Alka-Seltzer tablets "fully dissolve in 4 oz of water" has been among my highlights of the last couple days.

7  Shaving hurts for some reason.

6  I haven't spent this much time on Facebook in a LONG time.

5  When I start laughing I begin to cough! And let me just say...there's some funny stuff on YouTube these days so this whole laughing = coughing scenario isn't helpful!

4  Kleenex cool touchtm tissues are a work in progress...don't waste your money on them. I'm going with those Puffs w/ lotion next time for sure.

3  I miss my MidFirst family when I'm at home sick. I'd much rather be at work than this!

2  I'm missing an Ornament Party with my friends as I type this post. I even have a cool, Jack-in-the-Box elf ornament to place on their tree. Guess I'll have to pay them a visit some other day.

1  I CAN'T GO SEE MY NEW BABY NIECE, Autumn Renae Osborn. Isn't she cute!

It's not all bad news...

I must say that I'm happy to have a lot of wonderful people looking out for me. My roommate made me some nice soup. Jamba Juice (a quick walk across the street from my apartment) whips up this amazing warm drink with all kinds of herbs and vitamins.  Also, my work has been really understanding about me having to stay home. 

Overall, life is grand and I should be back to my normal self in no time!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Wildcats Like Water

I've been doing some research to figure out what school I should attend. I have pretty much decided to go into the field of hydrology. Every time I mention this to people I get a lot of questions about what a career as a hydrologist would look like. I think Matthew C. Larsen, associate director for water at the US Geological Survey put it best when he said: “Hydrologist is a fairly broad term, but generally, any research or problems having to do with water, there’s a hydrologist working on it.” For my purposes, I would like to work in the field and assist in providing data regarding water sources such as rivers, lakes and oceans. I would also like to be a force for good in cleaning up water that has been affected by pollution.

Though my research, I have found that there are only three major universities offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs in hydrology--University of California (in Davis), University of Nevada (in Reno) and University of Arizona (in Tucson). I had initially considered going to a community college to get a certificate in hydrology but the more I research I am finding that the best educational experience is found at these three universities.

I was thrilled to find out that UofA is the leader when it comes to hydrology programs. First, Tucson is a beautiful city and I would enjoy living there. Next, I am an Arizona resident so the tuition will be much lower than other options. And finally, I won't be too far away from my Phoenix friends and family. I have an interview scheduled with an adviser to find out more about how I can get into their program and become a water-loving UofA Wildcat. I'm getting excited!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Halloween 2011

I just wanted to post a couple pics of our Halloween adventures. Overall, it turned out to be a really fun Halloween with friends and I didn't even have to spend very much time/money on my costume!
The Crew...and, yes, that is a dog dressed as a soccer ball haha!
Veronica & I at Amsterdam
We all hung out at Veronica & Kara's house before we headed out to Amsterdam to see what kind of craziness we could feast our eyes upon. Let me just tell you...people are so creative! I wish I would've snapped a few photos of the costumes I saw but I was too busy dancing and having a good time (plus my iPhone 3G dinosaur doesn't have a flash LOL). I really like to see people dressed up and especially love it when folks think of something unusual or come up with their own interpretation of a popular costume.

One of my best friends, Octavio, got off work at 11 (he produces the nightly news for Univision 33--the Spanish TV station) and he met us out. He did a great job on his costume which he modified from a real sailor uniform he found at a thrift store. We found another guy in the original, unmodified version of Tavo's costume and took a quick pic.

It was a spooktacular night!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Seriously Random Post

It's almost Halloween and I finally figured out what I wanna "be!" I'm gonna be a glammed out British officer ala Kazaky ( I ran into this Ukrainian dance music/fashion group a while back on YouTube (they're pretty popular with over 8 million views) and they're really talented.

<---------- When I saw this outfit something just clicked and I decided it could be a fun Halloween costume! I think it will be something that nobody else will do so I won't look cookie-cutter.
On another TOTALLY random tangent. For some reason I've been paying extra close attention to street names lately. I like to wonder where the names came from and how they make up the character of a neighborhood. I was down in Tucson last weekend and really enjoyed the prevalence of street names in Spanish.

This sign really caught my eye --------------->
"Calle Sin Nombre" translated means street without a name. It made me laugh so I made a quick u-turn and snapped a photo. The other funny thing about this particular street name is that most English speakers would think "sin" is something bad and possibly choose to avoid this little path of sin.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Feeling Loved

I know it's not Thanksgiving yet but I'm having a moment of gratefulness so please bare with me! I've had a few trials lately (nothing big) and it's been a little taxing on my emotional well-being but these are the times when I really seem to notice all of the wonderful people in my life. These are individuals who probably don't even realize the positive impact they've had on my life recently.

First, my parents. Nobody loves you like your folks and anyone who knows my parents knows what amazing people they are. Just yesterday my dad was nice enough to come visit and bring lunch to me at work (on his way to work). An amazingly simple act of kindness was just what I needed after a restless night. Chicken sandwiches (made with chicken canned by my sister and mom), an apple and a couple York peppermint patties brought a big smile to my face.

Yesterday was doubly good because I got to catch up with by beautiful friend Jessie. We sat and chatted over some great Mexican food out in Ahwatukee. I am so grateful for her!
Another person who's been such a blessing in my life these days is my roommate Shane. Some of the stress I've been experiencing has been related to our housing situation and he's been so supportive and positive about the whole situation. He's such a great friend and we have such a great time whenever we're together!

Speaking of friends, its so fun when people will just text you randomly and make your day a little brighter. Such was the case today with my friend Jorge. We had lost touch and he randomly texted me to see how I was doing and see if I wanted to grab a drink real quick. We got to catch up and talk about life. It made me happy! Oh, and his new puppy is the cutest thing ever...and super mellow (unlike his dad haha)!

Lastly, my work family. I am very lucky to work where I work and with the people I work with. I had a training class today and I got to see some people I don't see on a daily basis. It just reminded me of how many great people there are in this world. One of my dearest friends at work is Adriana. She is a spunky Romanian girl with a big heart. We really enjoyed working together in the Downtown office where we would constantly tease each other and pretend like we were mad at each other just for fun. We have had some amazing times together and I know she would do anything for me and I would do the same for her (and her wonderful husband).

I guess I could keep going and going with this post. So many people help make my life amazing! I'm so grateful...even if it's over a month before Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

9-9-9 plan...not so simple after all:

I've been keeping a close eye on the group of candidates seeking the GOP nomination and I thought I'd have a little fun and do a facetious, political post.

I have to admit, when I first heard about Herman Cain's 9-9-9 tax plan I thought it sounded pretty smart. I like the idea of making the tax code more fair (although upon further observation I would say 9-9-9 is anything but fair). But, like Michele Bachman recently said, "the devil is in the details." Yes, I did just quote Michele Bachman people...get over it! LOL!

I found this article very informative:

Taxes you'll still pay under Cain's 9-9-9 plan

Also, being a HUGE SimCity buff (back in the day) I thought this article was really funny:

Maxis (the makers of SimCity) Response:

  "We encourage politicians to continue to look to innovative games like SimCity for inspiration for social and economic change," said [Maxis senior producer Kip] Katsarelis. "While we at Maxis and Electronic Arts do not endorse any political candidates or their platforms, it's interesting to see GOP candidate Herman Cain propose a simplified tax system like one we designed for the video game SimCity 4."

Let's just hope Michele Bachman's ├╝ber-intelligent comment about 9-9-9 acutally being flipped to become 6-6-6 doesn't result in some SimCityesque disaster!
Maybe Michele is right???

Monday, October 17, 2011

Life in the Suburbs!

My "Silver Limo"
Something unusual happened today...I departed from my typical Monday morning light rail commute and actually DROVE TO WORK! And you know what was weird? I really missed the ten-minute, earphones in, zoned out ride to work. It's crazy how you actually have to pay attention while driving down the texting for me on this morning's commute!

Anyway, I'm excited to report that I have taken on a new challenge at work and I am now working as a part of what my bank refers to as their "Float Team." It basically means that I'm supporting staff at banking centers as they are short-handed or when new staff is undergoing a training period. It's an exciting new opportunity.
My Temporary Home

Today I had the chance to work at the bank located at 48th Street & Chandler Blvd (in the Ahwatukee neighborhood of Phoenix). This beautiful neighborhood is located at the base of South Mountain and is well known as a haven for raising a family. It was such a change of pace from my usual Downtown Phoenix office. In Downtown the typical clientele are professionals working as attorneys, bankers or city/county/state workers. At the office in Ahwatukee the clientele was mostly small business owners and families. It was fun to watch parents come in with their kids and use the free coin counter to teach their kids about saving money. So, although I missed my friends (coworkers/clients) Downtown, I must say that I really enjoyed my day in "the burbs!" I can tell this is going to be a fun new experience as a "floater."

Saturday, September 24, 2011

$4.99 Twenty Piece McNuggets...WHY?

Half of my 20-piece order.          
So, it's hard to believe but I turned 30 this year! Determined to make this a year of smart decisions I made a goal to start eating healthier and preparing more meals at home. As you can see from the photo above I've run into some trouble--$4.99 Twenty-piece McNuggets are ruining my life!

For some reason I've always had a special place in my heart for McNuggets. The tasty, "golden and juicy, all white meat" morsels have an iconic taste that is hard to beat. I have never been totally sure of what I'm eating when I pop one of these nuggets into my mouth and bite down. It has a texture similar to chicken; however, the consistency of the "all white meat" center doesn't break apart like any "real" chicken I've ever encountered. Nevertheless, I can't let a little thing like that ruin my appreciation for a savory staple of American diet.

So, on to my dilemma. My entire adult life I have always been satiated with a ten-piece box of nuggets. I have never even considered buying a twenty-piece. But McDonald's--in their marketing genius--has decided to flex their "we're the best value in town" muscle once again and lower the twenty-piece McNugget price from approximately $7 to the unbelievable, bargain-basement price of $4.99 (25 cents/nugget)! Of course, the ten-piece price remains $3.69 (37 cents/nugget). Being one to appreciate a bargain I can't seem to bring myself to buy the 10 piece! I always start out with the best intentions--rationalizing the logic of buying a twenty-piece meal by reasoning that I can stow one box away in the fridge and make two meals out of my purchase. It sounds like a good plan, but guess what? You guessed it...the second the scent of these golden devils hits my nostrils I just dig in and, before I know what happened, ALL TWENTY NUGGETS HAVE VANISHED!

I could go into a self-loathing rant about my lack of self control but I'm a grown man now and self-loathing is no longer an option. I need a solution to my little problem. I have determined to buck my value-conscious, cheapskate mindset and pay 37 cents/nugget with the ten-piece. McDonald's! Why must you make my life so difficult!?