Monday, October 30, 2006

Lost in Translation

Yet another chapter in the Chronical. Sadly it is not as exciting as last weeks double douse of strippers and beer festivals. On Thursday, Phil, Farrell and I went to a couple of bars in the battery park district (Red Star and Prey). They were going away/retiring parties for people Phil works with. To describe it in one word....DUDES. I swear it was the biggest gathering of dudes ever outside some party at the playboy mansion. Great for me since I was wearing my pretty pink shoes (okay they don't match anything really, but they make me happy). Later, Farrell and I visited Marshall at work (aka running the karoke at Asylum). Okay, I know I cannot sing, but boy someone should have told these girls! I kept giving Marshall the "my God, my ears are bleeding look" and he tried to drown them out with the background music. The place was pretty dead until Farrell belted out the crowd pleaser Journey's "don't stop believing". I swear people stopped on the street and came in to sing along to that song.

Friday consisted of a nighttime cheap bar hopping on the upper west side with Ali, Farrell, and Josh. We found a place right by the park that served $3 PBR cans. Also, we all took turns talking to the drunk dialing Marshall in the pouring rain. The high point was Farrell's 4:30am voice mail message about a homeless man who was having arguments with an imaginary person. Evidently, the homeless guy tried to talk to Farrell on the train (to which Farrell ignored) and ended up following him when he transfered trains at Times Square. Scary. I probably would have started talking to my imaginary friend who would be bigger and badder than the homeless guy's friend. Sample conversation..."Marvin, don't you get that look in your eye, you know what happened last time, I'm not hiding another body...."

I went on a walking tour of New York on Saturday. I stopped by the south street seaport area (essentially an outdoor mall) to see the "Bodies" exhibit at the museum. I missed it when that show came thru Chicago, and my friends said it was a must see. Anyway, I didn't end up seeing it because the waiting line was close to an hour (I'll see it on a weekday instead to beat the tourist crowd). I decided to walk thru Chinatown since A) I've never seen it, and B) it was nearby. I felt a little out of place being the only non-asian person on the streets, but the signs cracked me up. You know how sometimes things litterally translated may not sound right in the other language. I was going to take pics of the signs, but thought it would be rude. Thankfully I got one picture off because it was "architectually interesting". Make sure to tell all the perverts that BJ's in Chinatown are only 99 cents.

Later that day I went Halloween costume shopping. It is a crime that I had not found one yet since it is my favorite holiday. I stopped by the Goodwill hoping to pick up something random. I ended up finding a cute mini-dress that looked like a go-go girl costume. The sad thing is that I would wear the dress when it was not Halloween. The Halloween party was full of really good costumes (I looooove Halloween!). I saw a group of six Umpa-Loompas (sp), a guy in a furry shark costume, Moses, Jesus (with a cross on his back going to burn for that one), Danny and Sandy from Grease, Indians, Pirates, etc. Of course, the holiday is also dubbed as "dress like a ho day" for girls. I saw sooooo much T&A. Like in the Mean Girls movie, many girl costumes were underwear and animal ears. Here are some pics from the party. Farrell is Joe Dirt. Josh Sturgis is a guy from NJ (totally love the pant suit/jogging suit). Josh (Farrell's friend) was a mad scientist. And me, blonde wig and red dress (question mark costume).

Monday, October 23, 2006

Is this it's Brewtopia

Ahhhh just when I thought the high point of the week would be watching a cowboy stripper, something else wonderful comes along. It was Marshall's 26th birthday on Friday, so Farell and I (well mostly Farell) took him to the "Brewtopia world beer festival". For $60, you can spend four hours sampling the various micro brews from around the world. It was being held at the Javits convention center (funny since that is the project I am working on, so I was able to do some recon while there). There must have been over a hundred imports and micro brew companies represented there. With so much to sample, it was like power hour for 4 hours! At on point, Farell said "this is the greatest day of my life, I feel like a kid in a candy store, I am so happy I can skip!" and then he proceeded to skip to the next booth. Each booth had trinkets to advertise their beer or brand. The boys loaded up on flashing pins, stickers, beads, medals (yes medals), hats, etc. What ever they could not put on their body, they shoved into my purse (I really should have brought a bigger purse). They called me their Sherpa. With the head to toe advertisement and giddy behavior, they were totally "those guys". Here is our before and after picture (Farell in the red shirt, Marshall looking drunk in both pictures).

Of course the night did not end once Brewtopia did. We aimlessly stumbled to a nearby seedy Hell's Kitchen hole-in-the-wall bar. On the way, we drunk dialed Farell's dad (why I do not know). The bar was on of those that only served three kinds of domestic beer and cheap whisky. The best part was the ski-ball! Farell's claim to fame is challenging and then beating a homeless guy at skiball. He was very proud of his 300 score until some one else got 330 after him. Next was the Irish Rouge pub (same one from the Nebraska game) where the Irish bartender remembered us from the previous week. By that time, it was almost closing time, so we were ushered out soon. Next was pizza where Marshall was convinced Farell had already left for home even though he was sitting right next to him. All in all, I think it was a good birthday celebration since Marshall showed up an hour late to the 2:00 KSU game the following day.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Ride 'em Cowboy!

Anywhere else in the country, it would be a typcial Thursday night. In New York City, you watch male strippers in a local bar. I met Phil (friend of my Chicago friend Josh) and his coworkers at a Battery Park (27th & 3rd) bar called Rodeo. At 7:45, the waitress informed us that we had to move to another area because a bachelorette party was coming at 8:00. She then told us that the male stripper was coming at 9:00. Since there were no walls in place, the group was able to move to a spot 10 feet away but will a full view of the area. We mused about what the stripper would look like, what he would do, etc. One guy offered up that the stripper should be a pizza boy that asks the girls "who ordered the extra sausage". I predicted a cowboy with ass-less chaps because the bar was cowboy themed. Now in my experience (Kansas mind you) the male strippers were not hot at all. Therefore I was plesantly surprised to see a quite yummy COWBOY in cut off jean shorts, boots, and vest leaning up against the railing. Okay take a moment to laugh about his outfit (gay or stripper?). He did not disappoint! Phil and I laughed our asses off watching him molest the women and strut around in his man thong. By the end of the show, I had captured a dozen pictures and he was almost naked covered in man sweat. I give Phil the utlimate friend award for watching a male stripper with me.

Monday, October 16, 2006

So hot its on FIRE!

This is part two (Saturday) of the massive adventure weekend. I was abruptly woken up Saturday morning by very loud rap music. I looked outside to see that a street fair was happening on my street (8th ave). I love street fairs because they have all sorts of relatively cheap crap and lots of food like crepes, mozzarella sammies, fresh fruit, etc. I headed down because I was in need of a casual $5 pasmenia (spelling?) shawl for the upcoming chill. I walked past an art booth with some of the most amazing amateur oils on canvas I have ever seen. The artist's work mostly consisted of architecture, buildings, city views, etc which are my taste. To describe the style, it was a cross between Van Gough, Cezanne, and Monet. I couldn't resist picking up a truely awesome (in my opinion) scene of New York. It is huge and the pictures of it do not do it justice. Hence another reason why friends should visit me in the city now.

That evening, I showed up at the KSU watch party being held at the Nebraska bar (because the KSU bar would not carry the PPV game). An hour before kickoff, the place was packed with over a hundred red shirt wearing Nebraska fans and three KSU people huddled together directly in front of the TV. Eventually our number inreased to 10. The sad thing was that the refs were totally calling the game in KSU's favor (I was embarassed because the calls were soooo bad) and we were still loosing. Actually that was probably a good thing because if we were winning, the place could turn ugly (we were vastly outnumbered). Here is a pic of the TV prior to kickoff. Either it is a cruel joke on the accent (Nabraska?) or they need to fire the proofreading editor at PPV.

After the game, the crew headed out to a karoke bar on 17th & 5th ave. Seriously, what is up with people and singing. This is the second time since I have been up here that everyone wanted to go karoke singing. The cab ride over was fun because we packed three guys (Farell, Nick, and Marshall) and one girl in the back. There was some "dude your hand is on my thigh" guy on guy stuff happening. Okay, I am the first to admit I cannot sing, cannot carry a tune in a bucket, my voice wilts flowers, etc. I resorted to backup vocals for REM's end of the world as we know it song. However, I think I may have taken the paint off the walls bad. Sorry to all those who were subjected to it. Anyway, I was quite impressed with Marshall's singing (very good) and later found out he works at a karoke bar (well that figures). It was a really fun time, and I even threw out a boy in the girls restroom WWF style (hey I wait for no man).

After belting out tunes for two hours, the gang split up and dispersed for the night. My click (yes I am still that immature) of Farell, Nick, and Marshall took another guy on guy cab down to the financial district (very southern tip of Manhattan). The streets are amazing down there, and they remind me of old town Europe with the cobblestones and narrow crooked feel. Anyway, the financial district is full of wall street men. Surprise, surprise, the bar was full of men. Good for me, bad for the boys. I think they counted a total of four girls in the entire place. The lone highlight of the bar was when I leaned over to order a drink and my hair caught on FIRE! You should have seen the look on all their faces. No worries, only a little of my hair actually burned (but it was enough to make the area smell like burnt hair). You cannot even tell, but I think that is a sign that I should stop by the barbers soon. He he he, thinking about it makes me laugh. Hope everyone enjoyed that little adventure. Until next week.......

Why was the floor all slippery

The weekend was packed full of exciting much so that I have to split up the posts. Here is a recap of Friday. I spent the work day at the project office coordinating with the Architects. Note I am temp working in another engineering firm's office until our space in the project office is complete. Anyway, the place is amazing (top floor, view of the city and Hudson river, very high slanted ceilings, etc) and has a great view. I'll post a picture of the view next time since I forgot my camera. After work, I met up with the Lindsey boy who is now my tourist buddy. We were going to play squash (racket sport very similar to racketball) but the non member fee to play would cost us $65 for 30-45 minutes. Not worth it. On our way back from the sports club, I accidently turned down 46th. We decided to keep walking down it since it looked like restaurant row. We popped into one place that advertised 80 different kinds of imported beer. Turns out, they have this device called a "beer tower" which is basically a giant cylinder with a tap. It holds 6 beers and is placed right on your table. After one hardy meal and one beer tower later, we headed off to a pub in the West Village called "the spotted pig". The main attraction at the place is cask beer. I strongly recommend those who have not experienced cask beer yet to try it out. It is hand pumped and therefore does not have that fizzy carbonated taste to it. Very good. While at the pub, I met two Sweedish boys in line to the bar. Turns out they were visiting a cousin who left them to head back to her apartment (note this was around 10pm). Lindsey and I took them under our wings since they were only 19 and 20 (realitively easy to get served since I rarely get carded....wait am I starting to look old?). We bar hopped in the West Village (or possibly around the NYU area since we seemed to be walking forever). We told the boys to just start talking Sweedish to any bouncers with the hope that the bouncer would just wave them in (totally worked). The last place of the evening was a fun club with a dancefloor upstairs. While dancing (they had the Killers Mr. Brightside playing, how could I resist), Lindsey noticed the dance floor felt slick. Turns out someone puked on the dance floor and we had stepped in it. Soooooo gross. I gag now while writing about it. We even had to clean it out of the treads of our shoes. Yuck! That ended the evening for us.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

hidden channels

I have previously lamented about my loss of cable. More speficially, the loss of certain channels (bravo) that carry my guilty pleasure shows (project runway). Well last night was a night full of surprises. I had always thought it was strange that I get the basics (abc, nbc, cbs, telemundo, public access, etc) plus the food network channel and TBS. After briefly surfing the 80+ available channels (most of them static or home shopping network), I decided I had the basics plus a few rouge channels. Anyway, in a moment of shear luck, I accidently typed in 98 instead of 05 (nbc) and discovered it was the Bravo channel. Hurrah!!!!! My tv channels usually stop at 85 and go back to 02 when surfing. I decided there may be other hidden channels, so spent the next 30 minutes typing in each succession of channels (85, 86, 87, 88, etc). I found ten other channels (mostly foreign) including Cinimax. Talk about assorted lot!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Its a bird, a plane, no a pyscho roommate

Okay no pictures this weekend because I left my camera at home. Sigh. I did see a sign for Dykes Lumber which I thought was funny. Yes I am that immature, but I figured what would Dykes know about wood anyway. Okay, back to the weekend recap. I started out Saturday morning with a run in the park. Big mistake. There is a race in the park every Saturday and Sunday. I tried to blend into the masses, but had to cut out early to get ready for my packed day. I met a fellow Nebraksan for Brunch. I went to high school with her, sort-of (she was two years younger but her brother was the same age as me). Anyway, it was great to catch up and see a friendly face. Oh and of course we got the latest gossip from our small town (via the mom grapevine). I was meeting Jordan Steele at his new apartment to watch the UT/OU game and listen to the KSU/OSU football game. Serous multitasking. FYI, Jordan is a former roommate from college. I am sure I have mentioned funny stories involving the famous dynamic duo of Brandon and Jordan. I am thrilled he has moved up here!

Before heading over there, I had about two hours to kill. I spent them wandering the streets and exploring the neighborhood. Much to my surprise, I found the salvation army. Okay, those who know me, know that I love thrif store shopping. It is HUGE! One floor of this massive warehouse was full of coats (wool, leather, fur, etc). This past weekend they were having a coat sale where wool coats were $5, leather $10, fur $20 etc. I have wanted a full-length duster wool coat in camel, and now I have one! Hurrah. The drycleaning bill will be more than the coat. Anyway, I looked at the massive furniture selection, and they had prime stuff. I picked out this L-shaped coffee table/entertainment center and they even sent a guy with me to hand deliver it to my place for free. I'll try to snap some pictures for the next post.

I proceeded to Jordan's one room studio that he shares with a girl stranger. We decided to listen to the game there since I don't have internet at home. Plus, I wanted to see how you can share a one-room studio with another person (bunk beds?). Well his roommate seemed normal at first, that is until she told me about her work in energy. She had crsytals on the window legde so that the moon could clense them. Plus she takes in stray dogs to work "energy" on them. Poor Jordan. It was hard to keep a straight face when she got talking. I didn't know how he felt until we got pizza (and laundry) during half-time. That is when he blurted out "she is f-ing pyscho". Sad, but at least you can't beat the rent.

Okay, hopefully the next post will be more exciting since I was pretty lame this past weekend.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Bounty of New York

Okay I have often heard that quality stuff could be found dumpster diving, and I hit the jackpot yetserday. On my way home from work, I passed by this huge dumpster for an office building. It was filled to the brim with top dollar executive office chairs. These chairs were in mint condition (ie fabic intact and all wheels accounted for). A janitor - or some guy in a green jumpsuit - was standing nearby. I asked why they were trashing all of these nice chairs. His reply was that the office was remodeling, and the fabic would not match the new scheme. I said "so they really are throwing all of these nice chairs away". He said "want some help getting one out". Hurrah! We fished out one (although I was thinking about grabbing a few so I could sell the spares on craig's list or something) and I rolled it back to my apartment. Granted I only lived two blocks from this place, but it was fun to see all the looks of bewilderment that people gave me when I rolled by. Now all I need is a table to round out all of my furniture requirements.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Oh no she didn't

Another weekend, another great set of stories. I flew back to Nebraska on Thursday afternoon to visit my family and attend the wedding of a high-school friend (Tina Kula). I show up at the NY airport (LaGuardia), and our flight is delayed 1-hour. I walked the terminal and was eying a donut or pretzel or something to curb my appetite, but decided not to since I was planning on catching a meal at the Chicago airport during my layover. Well we boarded the flight, strapped on our seat belts, and waited. Evidently, there was a storm system to the West and they would not let any west-bound flights take-off. So we sat on the runway (in our seats since it was an “active taxi”) for THREE HOURS. The really sad part is that they would not serve us water or peanuts because they would run out for the flight. The one good thing is that we were allowed to use our cell phones. I decided to return phone calls. One was from the Lindsey boy (see previous entries). When I called him, he said “well I am surprised you returned my call, since I read your blog”. (Dramatic gasp!!!!) Oops, quite awkward since I talked about our date and how I was not attracted to him (I can’t figure out why since he is such a 10). Being the great guy that he is (again, absolutely perfect in every way), he took it in stride and laughed it off. We decided to stay friends and keep in contact so that he could visit NY and we could do tourist things together (yeah new sight-seeing buddy). Please, any single girls contact me if you want to be set up with this guy.

Originally, I had a one hour lay-over in Chicago on my way to Omaha. The Chicago-Omaha flight was supposed to take off at 7:55pm. If memory served me right, the last flight out to Omaha was around 10pm. The NY flight landed in Chicago around 10:10. As soon as the “dong” went off to allow us to get out of our seats, I hauled to the front of the plane. I was pushing people out of the way determined to make that last flight. Another guy had the same idea because he was right alongside me. As soon as the door opened, we mad dashed to the nearest display. I scanned the flights, and the 10pm flight to Omaha had been canceled! Ugh, I was going to be stuck in Chicago for the night. I was dialing Ryan (Chicago friend who I could crash on the couch of) when I noticed the 7:55pm flight (my original flight) was “delayed”! I ran over to the counter, and the lady informed me the flight would not leave until 11pm! Whoo hoo! Actually the people around me were not amused that I was happy the flight was delayed because they had been waiting at the airport since 6pm. The unfortunate thing was that all shops at Midway airport close at 9 or 9:30. Here I am starving (no food since noon) and sucking on each piece of gum for the precious calories. I called my parents and told them to bring some food when they come pick me up from the airport (oh and to bring some nail clippers since I broke off my toe nail running in the terminal….ouch). Right on schedule, sort of, the plane arrived at 11pm. The flight crew was still in Baltimore, so we were stuck waiting again. Finally they arrived at 12:30am and we got into Omaha at 2am.

Thankfully, the weekend got much better. I treated myself to the Pride and Prejudice DVD (new one with Keira Knightley). Although my friend Allison says it is not as good as the BBC miniseries, I still considered it one of my top ten movies. Go rent it. Also on the romantic move, I attended Tina Kula’s wedding. She is the last of my high school friends to get married. Here are some pictures of her and her groom Sam (total hottie). I guess the Polish tradition (note I did not know Tina was Polish) is for the men to break a chair. A bridesmaid (cannot remember her name) and I didn’t know if they were going to lift Tina up in the chair and then break it or throw down or whatever. They actually just each grabbed a leg and pulled it apart wishbone style. Anyway, the number of pieces indicate how many children they will have. And the total was…..ten! However, three of the pieces were quite small, so Tina concluded she was going to have a group of midgets. Another Polish tradition is singing this one song and putting an apron on the bride. I don’t know how classy we looked, but the bridesmaid and I got on camera booing that part and giving it a thumbs down. As the night went on, Tina’s mom I think was buzzing. She kept asking me to tell her a joke. Luckily I have a half dozen “mom friendly” jokes (like a fish swam into a concrete wall and said damn, etc). I love it when old people get tipsy.