Sunday, May 25, 2008

A Day of Firsts

Today was our 3rd Dodger game in 7 days. A lot of baseball to be sure. 2 nights ago we witnessed our first Dodger rain delay in I don't know how many years and tonight was another night of firsts.

First, it was "On the Field Photo Day", which means that the players walk around and shake hands with people and you can take your picture with them. Ruby, the biggest Dodger fan I've seen in a long time had her picture taken with many players including starting pitcher, Brad Penny. She shook hands with Juan Pierre and had another photo taken with Andre Ethier who just happened to hit the game winning single in the bottom of the 10th inning.

The game was also full of firsts. Clayton Kershaw (recently called up rookie wiz kid) pitched in his first MLB game and struck his first batter out. Luis Maza (another rookie in the MLB although he's been in the minors forever), in for Jeff Kent who had the day off, hit his first pitch for his first MLB homerun. All in all, a very fun and exciting day.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Body World Exhibit

I took my little sister (from the Big Brother/Sister organization) to the Body World exhibit at the California Science Center. She wants to be a plastic surgeon so I figured this would be good to see if she could handle the gore. She could, I couldn't. This exhibit is in it's 3rd or 4th iteration and has been going around the country in different venues and with different bodies for about 4 years. I've missed all the other exhibits but wanted to ensure I got to this one. All I can say is, Wow!

I'm not sure how you could come out of this exhibit not affected in some way. I found it definitely life changing. Let me explain the premise of the exhibit. All of the exhibits are real. Real organs, real people, real everything. These people have donated their bodies to science and their bodies were basically injected with some sort of plastic in a process called plastination. It's bizarre but really cool. The picture is of a fellow holding his own skin. This was the end of the exhibit and was about all I could take as it was the grossest.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

30 Days

Today is my 30th day at my new job and I have to say that I'm truly enjoying it. The people are still nice, the job is still fun and probably will remain exciting. It's a very fast and hectic pace where I look up one minute and it's 9 am and look up the next and it's noon.

I'm learning to view life from the other side. Before I was with the manufacturer where I supply goods and services to companies like the one I'm working for now. Now, not only am I in the end user roll but also in a support roll. My work is not core to the business, I'm just supporting our core business, construction. It puts a different perspective on things and I'm wondering if the job is not actually more vital to the overall productivity of the company. Well, whatever the importance, it's immaterial. I have a job I enjoy and I'm not on an airplane all the time. The above photo is the Century condo towers we are building. On Avenue of the Stars in Century City it is will be well over 400' tall and will take 2 years to build at a rate of concrete poring of a floor every 5 days.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Karma and the Dog

My days at work now always have some bizarre sight or event in them. I work downtown and there is always something going on. An immigration march, TV show filming with gunshots, crazy homeless people, and the list goes on and on.

Yesterday and today were our big Los Angeles cell phone roll out. Lots of work in a small amount of time. I got a call to run over a couple spare phones to the Hollywood and Vine project and as I was running about the office I notice two women in the conference room and a dog. I go back towards my cube and make some snarky remark about people bring their dogs everywhere. You know where this is going right? Well, come on, give me a break, in Los Angeles dogs are like accessories and people bring them shopping and out to meals, it's just ridiculous.

So the fellow that sits next to me says, "the dog has special abilities". Well, then it dawned on me. Duh. As I made my way towards the elevator feeling like an idiot the woman and her dog were waiting there too. She said, "oh, you're the new IT person". One thing led to another and it turns out she is working at the Hollywood and Vine location. I offered her and her dog a ride. She had taken the train over. She's a very nice person and the dog is a "puppy in training". She has him for 18 months and trains him on obedience, he has to go with her everywhere for socializing. It's a volunteer thing.

The dog was very well behaved in the car and sat quietly on the seat. She has to train him that while he's wearing the green seeing eye dog shirt, he's working and cannot play or anything. She says once he gets the shirt off he goes nuts. As we let him out of the car a quick 20 minutes later I notice that the light grey colored back seat of my new Highlander is covered in black dog hair. I almost screamed but surpressed it. I thought, well, this is karma. Half a roll of duct tape later and the truck was clean.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

The Slug Wars

I've planted all sorts of vegetables this year. I've been so excited watching my little seedlings start to grow. Each morning and night I'm out there watering and examining each little plant with great hopes and expectations. Hope is a pretty cool thing isn't it? We hope about all sorts of things. We hope we'll win the lottery, we hope dinner will turn out well and I hope that my tomato plants will survive and thrive.

My hopes are starting to wane as my tomato and broccoli leaves have holes in them. Lately I've been coming outside in the morning and I see these little slime trails all over the place, mostly leading to my veggie planters. Slugs. I'm told these are slug trails. My first introduction to slugs was many years ago when on the show Survivor the contestants were eating them. How absolutely disgusting. What the hell was I to do about slugs? They come at night and are gone by morning.

I tried these slug pellets. I came out each morning with great hope that the slug trails would be gone. Instead I see slug trails going around the pellets. Smart little buggers. They were on to me. Then my friend told me about this age old trick of filling a tuna can with beer, leaving it out, the snails crawl in, get drunk and can't stagger out. Cool I thought. But where am I to get a tuna can? I don't eat canned tuna. I tried the terra cotta planter bases. That didn't work, they are porous. The beer just soaked into the base. Don't tell Dena this, but I tried some Tupperware ops. Too shallow, they apparently crawled out before drowning in their drunken stupors. Finally my friend brought me one empty tuna can. I filled it and went to bed with hope. That morning I awoke early to check the can. Wow! Slug trails leading directly to the can and a couple drunk, dead slugs. YAY! It works. I wish I had more cans. Any of you that live locally, please save your tuna cans for the wars.

I also tried some of this English slug killer powder. That works really well, too. The morning check revealed slug trails through the powder and then death. The carnage in the backyard can be gruesome on some mornings but the battle continues. I'm not sure who is winning but I'm pretty sure it's not me.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

A Crappy Day.....

Actually it was a good day for awhile there until I left the office and during some huge brain fart I forgot my laptop at work. Wierd and terribly inconvenient. Thank goodness for my treo with all my email on it. Then I finally got home and decided to be proactive and make a run to the drycleaner then go to the gym.

I park at the dry cleaner, get out of the car and in front of me was an odd sight. A homeless fellow, sitting on a milk crate talking to someone named Little Freddy on walkie talkie. Now granted, I'm not sure Little Freddy was talking back, but nonetheless it was an odd sight. I beebop into the dry cleaners, drop off my stuff and on the way back to the car this black fellow comes out of the liquor store next door. He's grabbing his crotch and yapping on his cell phone. Something about having lots of 'ho's and he could get this guy any number of 'ho's. As I fumbled to unlock the door, wondering what kind of neighborhood I live next to, I noticed the homeless guy still talking on his walkie talkie and sipping an olde english 800 brewski out of a straw. Just then it hit me, literally......I felt and heard wet splats all over. What the...!!!! For a nanosecond I thought the homeless guy had thrown his beer at me but another nanosecond later I realized it had come from above.

You see, I had parked under a billboard. Pigeons sit on billboards. I stood there, incredulous for a moment looking all around me and feeling what I now know is birdshit on my head and shoulders. The homeless guy is looking at me and I think, there's some sort of irony here but I'm missing it. Just then, SPLAT, SPLAT, SPLAT, another bombardment from above. In reality, the spacing between bombardments was really only a matter of a couple seconds. I think I escaped unscathed from that blast and jumped in the car. I sat there for a second and all of a sudden I felt like crying as the birdshit is starting to run down my sunglasses.