Sunday, December 30, 2007


Love this movie. The girl who played Juno was great, the Arrested Development reunion of characters was fun (both played great characters). Jennifer Gardner definitely defined quite desperation... her characters' desperation to be a mother and pain in not being able to do so herself was moving. There were plenty of LOL moments and lots of fun quotes. Definitely a fun movie. (even though I felt like I was the lone island of testosterone in the theater.

All in all - 8/10.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Christmas Vacation

So due to the quirks of federal leave and me apparently not taking enough leave time in the past year (or years given that I have a sizable balance) I get to re-experience that rare thing that is under-appreciated by the youth that get to enjoy it, a 2 week long Christmas vacation. Thank you "use or lose" rules!

It does lead to regressive behavior.... taking long lunches with friends and family, casual browsing of bookstores with conversation, playing video games late into the night (either with friends or family). Like last night where I was up until 4AM playing Carcassone (the deliciously simple in concept, difficult in practice game) with my roommate and my HS buddy (and to give an idea I am such a gamer that I was also playing a game of Civ 4: Beyond the Sword). My Tivo's are also looking pretty bare as well...

I did get a few good things for Christmas (some new clothes, a few gadgets from my mom, a video game (I think anything where I get a video game is a good thing.... I have been enjoying playing HL2: The Orange Box) and misc other things (another gift of alcohol from my nephew... following the trend from last year.... gotta wonder what my older brother thinks of me and my brothers in that he always gets us alcoholic gifts...)).

I am seriously enjoying this time and am resentful that come the second its due to come to an end...

Thursday, December 20, 2007

I am Legend

So I mostly loved this movie. It was interesting but I need more exposition (flash forwarding to 3 years after the outbreak... meh..... not as exciting.... I am not so interested in the end result, but the effect of society crashing down is facinating). Did like the fast zombies (though it reminded me of 28 Days Later... even to the point of FFWDin past the event itself). The smart zombie, which is never addressed (probably die to trama of the Will Smith character), which is kind of annoying. Good ending!

As normal I had problems with the math...... 80% mortality (for evenness lets use the 6 billion number from the movie)... 1.2 billion survivors... though they then make the claim that there was a 1% immunity rate. Then pull a 12 million number out... thats when if you turned to me in the theater you would see me doing hand number gestures.... I would argue that it should be 60 million (hey, if you were a survivor 19:1 odds are way better than 99:1)... wouldn't the people immune to the conversion also be immune to the airborne virus?

Yep, thats me... arguing math/logic about a horror/SF movie...


Blogger.... oh Blogger... why do you not have a private post feature? Why must it be all or nothing? (though I share the blame for keeping what I did out there)
So someone (R... Again.... so sorry) saw this blog and I wasn't as discrete (i.e. shutting my yap or keeping it as a draft) with some personal stuff.

The internets are neither as small or as impersonal as you may think it is... trust me that is one lesson that I have learned and I am sorry if I hurt or prolonged the pain of that woman.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

How the Army Plans a night out

Information has been redacted to protect the innocent (or in the case of some of the characters, not so innocent).

So, its the middle of Christmas party season and if we don't plan a night out on the town, its just not going to happen. So, here is the concept of the operation:

1) Meet up at 1730 ** DEC 2007 at ORP *** Street.
2) Consume pregame drinks and argue about who can build a better fire or about the playoffs or any other such stuff.
3) At 1930 ** DEC 2007 we cross the LD and board waiting trans to *** for *** at ***.
4) 2100 ** DEC 2007 pass phase line green and head to wicked good House party in nearby **. (We will bring our own beer to make our arrival more welcome.)
5) Operation talk with strangers will then proceed until 2300 ** DEC 2007 when we board provided trans for last time for a ride to ***.
6) 2330 ** DEC 2007 Alpha Team arrives at Phase Line Red to begin assault on ***. Likely targets include
***, *** and ***.

7) LOA - 0200
** DEC 2007 Trans back to ORP *** for rest and recovery.

It's a plan everyone can love!

Commander's Intent - Kick Ass time with flexibilty for opting in for any portion.

Safety Considerations: By hiring a large SUV for trans we get everyone home safely and get to feel like rock stars for a few hours.

Monday, December 10, 2007


I was seated at a party, talking about what I do to the woman next to me, when my date proudly also mentions that I was in the National Guard. Promptly the woman next to me said, "Oh! I am sorry" To which I quickly replied that "I wasn't, I volunteered after 9/11 and am proud of my service." (suprisingly for me since I am normally a bit slow on the comebacks)

Then she asked if I had been deployed. Of course I hadn't and said that I still needed more training. Of course she said "I bet you are hoping that we pull out of Iraq as quickly as we can". (on a roll here, unusual) I stated that "Actually I would like to finish the job and leave Iraq in a stable state, better than we found it"... Then noting the nudge from my date I dropped the line...

It took me quite a while to get over the shock of the first response.. I didn't even mention it for a couple of days since I was kind of stewing over it.

God save me from Liberal idiots...

Friday, November 30, 2007

The Perils of Modern Dating (aka Facebook can create awkward situations)

So dating in the 21st Century is a lot more complicated than it was in the past. And so was breaking up (the main focus here).

Somehow I believe that it was a little harder to be able to peer into the lives of the people that you dated back in the days before Facebook. You definitely didn't get situations like I just had happen:

I broke up about 2 months ago with a girl who I had been dating for 5 months. I kind of dragged her onto FB but she seemed to take to it. Photos were taken, tags added. When we separated I a) wasn't really thinking and b) didn't listen to advice. I should have cleared the photo's (not delete them, just from FB and moved them to my private file store) and dropped her as a friend (not a forever thing because I want her to be my friend eventually) as otherwise you can see way too much of what is happening in the other persons life. I think they had it easier in the old days.... take the photographs down, avoid the places where you may run into each other... its a lot harder in this electronic land.

As I started heading back out there I realized (after much needling by my roommate) that I really needed to move the pictures off my profile (because it's just awkward to still have pics up of last GF's.... it can create issues for anyone new that you are dating). So I did... and then I got the email questioning why I had removed pics of her (as well as one where I went to see a chick flick, querying whom I had gone to see it with). Ugh... so awkward. I should have done this stuff in the first place and now I am prolonging her hurt. So many considerations... so complicated.

I am not even going into the new issue of "When to remove your profile from dating sites.." that has come up more than once in the past few years.... too early you look desperate, too late, not into her enough... Argh....

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Strike Week 4?

Okay... so the first show has run out(The Office... shocking I know given that a number of the actors are also writers)... and a number of shows are running on fumes...

It's created an odd TV season, with the fewest cancellations that I have ever seen (shows that would have been canned, like Journeyman or Cavemen, have gotten a lease on life... heck Journeyman will end itself gracefully... that in normal times would have had them meeting the axmen quite a bit earlier..).

But this needs to end soon.... They are soon going to be seriously affecting Pilot season in short order.... That and I want more episodes of my favorite shows!

As a side note here is what I am a "fast consumer" (i.e., doesn't spend much time on my Tivo)

  • Dirty Sexy Money (so deliciously sordid)

  • Chuck (show gets better and better)

  • Reaper (love the Devil)

  • Bionic Woman

  • Heroes (overcame the problems of the first few episodes)

  • Bones (my favorite procedural)

  • NCIS

  • The Office

  • Samatha Who

  • How I Met Your Mother

Everything else is a background show or something to watch during the coming pause.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


So in an interesting week of revelations I learn that my roommate hooked-up (aside, in my mind hooked-up means having sex... not so in hers) with my HS buddy last week (mango infused rum. Its dangerous) but I also learned this amusing factoid:

Last year I came home from a Christmas party (a work one) and passed out half naked on the couch.... So then my roommate comes back and learned that I was naked in the most important way... my boys were hanging out and enjoying the breeze. Apparently she was quite shocked and took advantage of meeting some people far, far away from my condo in short order...

I will be teasing her about both of the above for quite some time...

Monday, November 26, 2007


Yeah, I the guy saw enchanted. The date I was with wanted to see a movie (and I wanted to extend the time with that woman) so of all the movies it seemed the best.

And it was GOOD!

It was very self-aware (periodic requests to stop singing), slightly mocking of the genre (you met him yesterday and are getting married today?) but also in the spirit of the genre.

The musical in Central park was awesome, the scene where the city wildlife clean the apartment was great and overall I am throughly impressed.

Yeah, you could tell what was going to happen but you wanted it to happen anyway... heck you expected it to happen.

And they lived happily ever after!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Everyone Stuffed now?

I know that I am.... definitely eating very light today... AT WORK.....
Just seems wrong to be at work on day that most people have off. Though I imagine that very little real work will occur today.

Did I really eat 3 pieces of pie?

I missed having my closest brother at Thanksgiving this year... It felt wierd not having him (this year they flipped the whole Thanksgiving with us, Christmas with her family deal..)

On the plus side I ran in the PWBA 5 Mile race down in Alexandria yesterday morning. 47:30, a 9:30 pace... not too bad given that it was hot...

Now back to "work".... Which will very definitely include a trip to the gym in a little bit.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


To set the scene:
Make food (and oh so healthy combo of steamed veggies and chicken breast). One in the oven (chicken... which results in a lot of fat/liquid in the glass plate used) and the other on the stove.... prepare veggies (low fat salad dressing) come back, get chicken out and lay on stove.... which of course you thought was off.... get chicken and drink... eat.... minutes later hear and smell something.... stupidly move plate a bit, whereupon liquid comes in contact with charred area.... super hot glass spewed everywhere.... Give prayer that nothing hit you (the charred hole in the ground is a hint.... thank god there was enough time to realize that you had goofed and back up).
I am going to be spending the next hour cleaning up glass that has traveled a very long distance...
Thank god I am redoing the kitchen very soon...

Can you believe that the Army trusts me with weapons, grenades and 30 some odd soldiers? Neither can I....

Strike Week 2.

Stop the insanity.... please!! Do you know the damage that you are doing to one of my favorite mediums, Television?
Do you understand the long term damage that you are doing? The corporations that you are fighting have deep pockets and can wait you out. Your fellow employees are not so lucky.. Look at the havoc that you are wreaking on them.
I just perused the latest EW (and watched the silly WGA video on youtube) and the number of shows that are in "inventory" is looking pretty pathetically low.. and god imagine the damage if this goes too far into the new year... into my precious pilot season... That would mean no new shows for the 2008 season.

I am sorry. I admit to not having much loyalty to unions (as a white collar worker I view them as absurd for the people of my class... I can do my own negotiating thank you very much!). But I think that you are doing irreparable damage to the very industry that you are trying to extract the money from. Get back to work!

Thursday, November 08, 2007


So all this stuff going on in the world and what is my attention on?
The Strike.....
And its all about how this stupid fight(and both sides have a point... Don't writers get paid a salary? I know that I do and that everything I do is the property of my employer... What makes "creative" people so special that they deserve unique treatment? However I just want them to resolve this and if this means the media company needs to throw a few bucks the writers way then so be it) is going to impact me.
All my favorite shows are shutting down production (Heroes just announced that they may make the December episode the season finale). Of course they would do this to me now that my Tivo 3 is finally set without any further issues....

I know that the video game industry, rentals and people starving for attention (reality show contestants) are all waiting in the wings to pick up the slack.

Monday, October 29, 2007

I failed..

17 miles in (right around "The Awakening" at Haines Point) I knew I was in trouble (up til then I was doing well, 10 minute pace, on track to finish in 4:30). I made it a point to drink several glasses of water at each water point along the route, had a pot of tea in the morning before I went to the race. But it wasn't enough. The headache came first, throbbing and intense that caused me to remove my headphones. Then came the nausea, followed by cramping in the legs.. Given that I have had experience with this before (down in Alabama this summer) I knew that I was in trouble.
Stopped in the aid station just before mile 19. Medics (good Navy Corpsmen) looked at me, got my BP and then started the IV. Took the trailer bus back to Pentagon City, Metro'd back home (so wasn't going to go to Rosslyn, I didn't earn anything and I was frustrated and hurting), and showered, slept and sulked a little (yeah, not big on the whole failure thing, particularly since I was so close). Started planning modifications for next year (yep, I will be one of those people with a camelback on for the race next time). My marathon dream, at least for this year, is over.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Gotta Love self-inflicted sick leave..

Just placed on my schedule the plan for not showing up on Monday... Because, y'know, of the silly 26.2 miles I plan to run on Sunday. I must be insane...
I half think my anxiety is related to the run... I really hope that its like a lot of things, where the worry is worse than the actual event. then I remember that I am going to run 26.2 miles and am pretty sure that the event will be worse than the anticipation.
My knees are so going to hate me at the end... Big boys like me are meant to stroll, not run those sort of distances.

Though I have to say I like this taper period... after so much running its like I got some of my life back.

Monday, October 22, 2007

So this was an "off" weekend?

One all too fun HH (many thanks to the great hosts, particularily Arjewtino and I Now Pronounce You)... I think I was fine until I mistakely took the offer of a shot from the lovely jess of what? the curtains? Loved the shot, not the effects (which involved getting on the wrong direction orange line traing, then missing my stop by one when I finally got turned around).

After slowly waking up the next morning, a quick lunch with my ex (not sure I have had the chance to use that term before), then off to the DC United game where I chilled with my nephew. An early bed (or couch), a mid-sleep wake-up and movement due to the loud return of my roommate and then a late morning. Then 2 (yes, 2) dates on Sunday. Apparently I deal with a breakup by throwing myself back out there... everyone has their own way of recovering I guess. I did get to see Gone, Baby, Gone and LOVED it. really depressing.. really made me appreciate my life....

Friday, October 19, 2007

Blogging and Dating Ethics

So lets say that I read a bunch of blogs... a looot of blogs... I have too much free time at work at times.

And as noted I am now single and looking around (browsing through Match and other big dating sites).

I see a picture that seems familiar. A quick click over to Bloglines to confirm my thought after I read her profile (which seems very familiar... everyone has a writing signature that when writing personal stuff is readily detectible after reading a few paragraphs). So I confirm that she is blogger that I have enjoyed reading.

Whats the ethics here? I know that it would make a poor opener when I send the email but assuming of course that my email doesn't disappear into the ether and I actually get a date, when would this come up? Just idle speculation at this point but...

Monday, October 15, 2007

blog action day

Wow, greener than I thought...
So I took a poll that I saw over on love is blonde and was kind of surprised... That I came far below my fellow Americans. I guess that since I live close to the city in a multi-story condo, walk to work, eat healthy local food, make sure my electronic toys are off when they need to be that I come out ok (though I lost point for my love of meat....). Even though I skew toward the conservative side I really do think about my actions.. The smaller footprint that I have the less we need to import oil (and the less reason that my boys, the US Army, needs to be is Arabic hellholes.). That and on some level it lets me feel a little superior to all those unthinking liberals that spout what should happen and don't actually walk the walk. An awesome amount of irony can be found on a big SUV with the following 2 bumper stickers that I saw the other day: "Save the Planet" and "Clinton 2008".


An Army Weekend

Have I commented much about how much more I like Army stuff now that I am finished with that awful OCS stuff? No? Well suffice it to say that though this weekend was long (starting on Thursday and running until 2PM-ish on Sunday) it was successful. Most of the soldiers in my unit got Qual'd (including myself... 28/40. Not too shabby considering I have awful eyesight and great when you consider how long it took to get this result in Basic), we ran the ranges, no one got hurt and we got a congrats message later on Sunday evening. Not that I noticed as I was sacked out on the couch by then.

Long hours, expensive meals ($9 for the dinner? Are you kidding me!?), MRE's and a rough bed (slept in tents, rocky ground, with 40 people in earshot...), and of course the heady weight of command. No wonder I was pooped by the time we drove home.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

A nipply problem.

Alright... So for whatever reason my last 3 GF's have been quick to point out that I have very hard nipples (and pretty sensitive.. at least for a guys)... Normally not a problem(maybe even an advantage at times), just something that has been noted on a consistent basis for quite some time.

Now to the crux of the problem... I remember when I was younger and noted that one or 2 fellows who finished their marathons (I grew up in Arlington so I have seen a few ends of the Marine Corp Marathon a couple of times when family have run it) had unfortunate spots of red on their shirts at the end of the race. I calmly filed that away under the "that’s weird category" and promptly forgot about it... until the past month or so.
See lately I have been clocking my longest runs ever (like the one last week that almost killed me). And um... all of a sudden I have a newfound respect for the above problem. It seems that even though I use really expensive, nice shirts (underarmor or Nike primarily) that is not soft enough. About a month ago I was definitely bleeding and it took a couple of days to heal. So I have now taken to wearing Band-Aids as I run (one fell off last week.... ouch). So now it looks like I am wearing pasties for my run... I forgot to take them off after a run 2 weeks ago and didn't notice until I was in the gym locker room... I so need to try some different solutions (Vaseline was just purchased to go with the Band-Aids so as to offer a redundant solution).

So god help me, I have a newfound respect of the steps that you ladies out there do to protect your breasts (damn, nipples getting rubbed raw hurts!).

Monday, September 24, 2007

I have a sickness...

Above is the Squished in version of my TV schedule.... I normally keep it on seperate worksheets but this shows up better.....

I know the first stage of dealing with addiction is to admit a problem.... but.... I really have no urge to correct my problem....
BTW, anyone want to take odds on who will win the cancellation lottery? My money is on Cavemen.....

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Running will be the death of me

So I did my longest run on Tuesday (I know this since Lance Armstrong told me so in my earphones (Nike+ iPod pedometer... cool and useful toy)). 15.2 miles!@ I did walk the last mile or so (the infamous runners trot made it painful to run).

Then I stopped in at my parents (they are on my way home to my condo). Then the nausea hit, followed by the headache.... then I felt too hot.... then I shifted to intensely cold (like teeth chattering cold....) My parents (mom is an RN) were really concerned. I was able to shove a little food down (strawberries and cookies plus some tea) and then spent the next 2 hours curled up on the couch at my parents shivering even though I had a heavy sweatshirt on and a blanket covering me.

I then got home at around 1130, took a shower, let work know that it was unlikely that they would see me tomorrow and then curled up in bed with the sheets around me..

And I am already planning on running further next Tuesday.... I think I am insane..... And to think in a little over a month I intend to do 11 more miles than I just did in the Marine Corp Marathon....

Monday, September 17, 2007


A free weekend. What a novel thing. After having things scheduled for the past 3 weekends without end, and my schedule is starting to look full in the future it was refreshing to finally have a weekend to enjoy.

I started it off by heading to Continental after the Gym to enjoy their happy hour with my GF (though the beers were up to par the food wasn’t as good as it has been). An early evening then off to bed.

GF took off early to go volunteer. Then I slept in, laid around for quite some time (read, watch some TV, played Bioshock). Then a nice afternoon run, popped over to the parents for dinner (burgers) the off to see a movie over at AMC Hoffman. The computers were down there again (do they ever work?) so we just barely made it inside for the show. Though it was worth it…. “Superbad” was awesome. One of the best teen movies that I have seen, period. I think that it helped that all of the cast were much more typical and less glossy than some of the normal teen fare and that the writing was excellent and really captures kids at that age.

After a lazy startup we went to Alexandria for brunch on Sunday. We went to Pat Troys for the food (I had a really good Irish breakfast). Then we spent several hours strolling around, checking out shops and just enjoying the fantastic day.

After a quick recharge (nap for GF, visit to the gym for me) we then headed over to Talula’s Eat Bar to check out a showing of one of the best movies ever… “Goonies”. I liked a lot of what they had there and the popcorn and other treats were a nice touch. Will definitely have to hit it again in the future.
A little bit of Emmy’s and then bed. A very fine weekend.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

So glad I live in this country...

For all the claims of free speech being repressed in this country, you have stories such as this:

BBC News (oddly you get the most unbiased coverage from the BBC... when you pull up the story from other sources, such as ABC you get items tossed in such as "far right" and "shaved heads"). Though I did get the most shudder inducing quote from the ABC article:

"It is very important to remember that the freedom of assembly and
expression can be restricted to protect the rights and freedoms of others,
including the freedom of thought, conscience and religion," secretary general Terry Davis said. "

Yeah, we have problems in this country. But we still believe that people have the right to assemble, heck we even offer security if its going to be controversial (like anything involving that vile KKK). Whereas "The mayor of Brussels, Freddy Thielemans, banned the protest last month for fear it would cause problems with the city's immigrant population."

Its stories like this that make me sick when people continue to point at Europe as the bright and shining light that all others would do well to follow.. Please, give it a rest.

And BTW people.... it says freedom of speech.... it doesn't mean freedom of responsibility. If you say something then everyone (other than the government which should stay out of it) has the right to make you pay for it in their own way... (ie, you say something stupid about the Irish then I wouldn't expect my business would be heading to you again).

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Fall TV shows its head early

I was excited to learn on Monday that via my Tivo and Amazon Unbox I would be able to get a sneak peek at some of the new shows (unfortunately I am still unable to get Journeyman (aka Quantum Leap from its descriptions) but I will try again tomorrow probably).

  • Chuck - Of the batch this was the one that I was the most excited about. And I wasnt let down. Very quirky and fun. Does have flaws but it looks to be a good cast and fun little show... Kinda reminds me still of Jake 2.0
  • Life - Wasn't sure on this one. But it grew on my during the show. Life hadn't made my initial cut of shows to watch and now will get a reprieve and a chance to prove itself.
  • Bionic Woman - I am intrigued.... Pretty dark show but has a lot of possiblities. Jumps right into the action and drags you into the show. Seeing this episode solidified that this show would be on my list in the next few weeks.

Interestingly I was very impressed with the video quality provided from Unbox, it was one of the best SD signals that I had seen...

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

6 Years ago.

Even now I can remember the events of 6 years ago with perfect clarity.

I was unemployed at the time (though I had just done an interview that would lead to a job in a few short weeks with the government). So I slept in until around 0800. Then I just remember the panic, the desperate attempts to get in touch with family. The fear that I couldn't. The absolute horrors of seeing one, then the other tower of the WTC go down. Hearing about the strike on the Pentagon and seeing smoke in the distance. The further panic of reports of another aircraft headed for DC.

It all still resonates strongly with me and remains a powerful motivator for my actions today. Every time that I put on my uniform I have that strong desire to make sure that what happened 6 years ago never happens again and, heaven forbid, that something happened again that I could provide more assistance than sitting at home desperately seeking more information about that safety of my family.

Though I dodged a bullet in that no one from my extended or immediate family was hurt (though my uncle and cousin will probably forever have the images of the jumpers burned in their mind as they were working in the vicinity) my heart still aches for the people that lost their lives to this cowardly attack and for their families that continue to mourn their loss. It saddens me that the scum that ochestrated this event still continue to breathe and still offer some sort of further threat to this country.

Somehow its appropriate that on a day commemorating such a grim event even the weather seemed sad.

So worth it.

So I had my first drill as a 2nd Lieutenant this weekend. I like my CO, XO and fellow LT. As I was wandering the firing line acting as a safety and offering assistance it really made me feel that the 2 years of work to get to this place was worth it. Though I went to bed tired Saturday night I knew that I was satisfied and proud of my work. For the first time in 2 years I am looking forward to my next drill and the additional responsibility that I will have then.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Embarassed for others....

never lend your GF a computer that has had many more users than yourself for prolonged periods of time without wiping it first. It cuts down on the awkward emails that come in when she is sick and using it out of boredom.. Particularly when she thinks that you have been the sole user of said machine...

And then emailing back and desperately asking not to be told the specifics because then you will be pondering which of the potential users did access those sites…

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Living in a bubble

Every so often you come to realize that you live in a bubble. Particularly when you step outside it for a while.

Today was my first day of classes at GMU for the semester. I have decided to continue taking classes there and get another degree (in Information Systems Security and Assurance). Since I work in the government with everyone I deal with having a security clearance you sometimes really forget the makeup up the IT world. Boy did I get a reminder today. Of the 36 people in my class there were 3 white guys, one Asian, and EVERYONE else was from India.... Before I joined the government (almost 6 years now.. wow...) I used to work commercial clients and I guess I didn't notice and forgot. Its just jarring to pop out the norm that you get so used to..

Its pretty sad that there aren't more American Citizens in the class. I don't remember the numbers but the participation of AmCits in higher education (in particular the useful ones like engineering and science) is dreadfully low. I get scared for our future sometimes, since it seems that entertainment and education are one of our main exports, but eventually that will be produced elsewhere.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Awesome weekend! (I am a Lieutenant now)

Before I say anything else, here I am as the end result of 22 months of hard work!

So I had the pleasure of starting my weekend early, with Thursday night spent at the Zoo (at the very drinky event of Brew at the Zoo).
Then a WAY too early morning drive down for an 0800 report time down at Ft. Pickett.
Lots of inspections of the uniforms, practice for the graduation and the minutia that is required for these events. And very quickly it was Saturday Morning.
At 1230 I met with my parents and GF, went to the chapel and signed my life away for the next 6 years. I was very lucky in that my father, a retired LCDR from the Navy, was permitted to swear me in.
Then a little more dead time, then the ceremony, which was really nice. I actually won an award (Academic Leader) and then had the pleasure of having both my parents pin my 2nd Lieutenant bars onto my shoulder. Then a nice dinner in downtown Blackstone and a ride home.
Believe it or not I went for a 12.5 mile run Sunday morning (still training for the MCM). We also had a great dinner with 2 of the other 2LTs and their family's over at Ft. McNair in the evening. Lots of fun to be had by all!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

And down they went!

3-1. Atlantic Cup... Moreno's 109th goal (now the holder of the most goals scored in MLS).... What a great game..

And the fingers were fun since my nephew LOVED them.... to see him wander into my parents place with one on both hands and him chanting d....c..... united! was awesome!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

NY is going down

There are few teams I passionately dislike (in particular outside of the college realm.... yeah, I am looking at you Wahoo's as example). Somehow 2 of the them, the NY Yankees and the NY/NJ Metrostars (I mean Red Bulls) are from NY. So I am definately looking forward to this evening when I can sit back and let the boys in Black and Red take on the Metroscum... I mean Full of Bull... this evening....

T-minus 3 days until I become a comissioned officer....

Friday, August 17, 2007

So using contractors when I get married.....

So I just got a touch of what it feels like to arrange a wedding (at least that’s how it feels to me).

In the past couple of days I have had to get my fellow Officer Candidates to set up the reception for our graduation while I took on the daunting (to me at least) task of getting the invites out. Quite a task, something that I will go far to avoid in the future. 61 invitations to basically every general and field grade officer in the Virginia Army National Guard. Selecting and getting the wording of the invite, reply card and map approved, prying the invite list from the people who are providing the list, getting the cards (reply and main invite made up), generating and printing the labels (given the timeframe there was no way this was going to be hand labeled as protocol implies it should), getting Kinko’s to print the cards (and dealing with my the 3 phone calls and one visit from my GF to get things right) and then finally stuffing, labeling and stamping everything. All in 3 days... Thank god my GF was willing to help and could spare the time to help this hapless male through this crap.

T-Minus 8 days until I become 2nd Lieutenant Media Addict..... My uniform is almost completely ready and I am so stoked to move on to my next task (and to get this OCS stuff behind me).

Monday, August 13, 2007

Yeah, Yeah....

Its summer, I've been catching up (being gone for 15 days makes you feel like you are playing catchup for the next week or 2).

Seen some great movies (The Simpsons and The Bourne Ultimatum), enjoyed a great Restaurant Week meal and drinks (at 15Ria), went to NYC (awesome play, Avenue Q and awesome food (Bobby Flay's Bolo, Heidelburg German Restaurant, and of course a number of slices of NY Pizza) and am just now getting back into the swing of things..

Catching up on some TV too.... really enjoying the new and returning cable shows... Pysch has moved up to the list to near the top, Burn Notice, Mad Men, and a slew of others... now if only I had the time to watch everything...

Tuesday, August 07, 2007


I got back at 11PM on Friday and am only now feeling up to writing about my two week ordeal.

Most of my squad (C/2/1 - Fishercats) from OCS....

Almost recovered from the Poison Ivy (it got on my face for gods sake.... my fricking face). Still not recovered on the sleep side.

Training sucked. Lots of time in the field, sleeping on the bare earth. Served as food for the local wildlife (chiggers.... so much bad information out there about them... I followed through with my resolution to do some research on it when I got back and good old Wikipedia didn't let me down.. here and here for more information on these pesky bugs... amazingly the mosquitos and ticks weren't even noticable).... But oh, the poison ivy..... There were some fields down there that make me shudder now... where it seems that every inch of the ground has this obnoxious plant on it. Luckily the Army cleaned me up a little right at the end, with a nice little shot and a treatment of drugs to decrease the effects. And the Combat Survival Water Test helped at the midpoint (thats me taking the plunge from the diving board below)

But overall I was kind of lucky. It could have been hotter, it could have rained a lot more, been buggier and overall sucked a lot more.

Interesting point.... Office Working City boys such as myself really cannot adapt to the type of weather down in Alabama in such a short time. This time last week I had received an IV of saline and electrolytes twice....

Its over and done with now, and now I just need to get things set for our graduation party on the 25th and then onward to joining my new Unit as a 2nd Lt.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

I passed!

I am itchy and tired still but I am back, alive and mostly intact (except for a case of Poison Ivy that is taking its time to go away). 3 weeks until I can wear my new rank (after having it pinned on by parents). Still so tired... More to follow later when I have recovered from my 2 week long ordeal...

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


And I am off until the week of 8/5. I will be spending the next 16 days down at Ft. McClellan Alabama completing Phase III of OCS. Way too much camping for this city boy but them the breaks..

I fully expect to return a little beaten up, a number of pounds lighter, and with a big grin that I have finally finished the OCS thing and can proceed onto the real job at hand.

So until that time, I leave y'all with a big old HOOAH!


Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Movies! (and other entertaining stuff)

On Friday night I saw Ratatouille ... It was a lot of a fun. Right from the beginning, with the alien abduction bit then right into the main feature it was a very enjoyable movie. 7/10

Loving -

  • Pysch - I loved the premier, and will definitely enjoy the 3 episodes that will be waiting for me when I return.

  • Burn Notice - also lots of fun. will definitely be looking forward to the set that is waiting for me on return as well

  • That my Tivo finally has a good HD

  • That my GF is now living a lot closer. Her being out in Reston was a pain.
  • That my best friend (from 1st grade) DV was in town last night.... I think we spent almost 4 hours catching up last night in Dremo's.... I m

Not so Loving...

  • That DC United blew a frigging 3 point lead.... that was just sad

  • That I have to leave my GF for 3 weeks... I hate that a decision that I made ealier is affecting her now.


So after almost 2 years of training (9 weeks of basic training in '05, a 2 week AT last summer, countless weekend drills, class meetings, packing anxiety) I find myself rapidly approaching on my last 2 week training event for OCS here in VA.

Its been humbling so far. Because while the military stuff is known to me in theory, in practice its been difficult. I have never done so badly (in respect to others) in my life and its hurt my ego a lot. I did do well on the technical aspects (I have always been a quick study and the classes are at least vaguely familiar to me) but when it comes down to the practical parts I have found myself come up far short of my expectations.
And now in a handful of days it all comes down to how well I can execute a mission out in the field. One, maybe 2 chances to prove that I am worthy of leading the best soldiers in the world. No pressure at all..... Though I know that I can rise to the pressure and I have gotten pretty good support from my trainers at the OCS Company.

The packing is done, the papers I need are printed, the mind is already getting into the right mood. Time to spend some time with the family and GF. Oddly I am looking forward to seeing some of the great people that I met last summer, see some of the other candidates from VA and to see my good buddy PW (who will be joining us down in Alabama after doing the accelerated course. That and at this point I want to get over this hump and get on to the next challenge.

T-minus 2 days to departure...

Friday, July 13, 2007

The US Army does NOT travel light...

The Army gives their soldiers lots of stuff, and expects them to take it with them.. no longer is it the day of a soldier fitting everything into a rucksack and a duffel.

For further evidence, see the below pictures.... I am about to head off for AT (Annual Training, in my case its OCS (Officer Candidate School) Phase III) in another week so I decided to start laying everything out and seeing what I need...
The worst part is that there are a few items missing still..... (a couple of uniforms on the black container (not coming) and other things such as a personal hygiene kit.)
BTW, that thing wrapped in the rope is my tent... I swear it must date from the Korea war....
And thats not all... the next picture has items not on the packing list (though badly needed for the field) and yet ANOTHER bag full for gear that I had already packed (and there was no way that I am going to unpack at this time, its time for bed...)

Time to have one last glass of wine (my instructors would probably mock me for drinking wine instead of beer as I packed) and then off to bed... hopefully I won't stumble over this stuff in the morning....

T-minus 6ish days until Phase III... 2 weeks of hell in Alabama.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Harry Potter

I am that guy.... apparently the one guy who hasn't seen the other HP movies....

And of course somehow (namely because of the GF's obsession with HP) the first HP movie that I see is the 5th one. I read the first book and just decided to step back from the series. After this movie I have decided that I must rectify this after I get back (maybe not the books but at least the movies).

Overall I enjoyed the show, it was pretty fun though a bit packed. I guess enough of the movie seeped through from pop culture (and add in a whole life of reading SF, so I can pick up plots/different worlds pretty quickly) that I pretty much knew what was going on.

T-minus 7 days until Phase III... 2 weeks of hell in Alabama.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Love my media...

What I am watching on TV this summer (assuming I don't lose any more shows from my Tivo... poor thing doesn't like the new external HD):
  • Burn Notice - I have really enjoyed the first 2 episodes
  • Eureka - loved this show last summer
  • Pysch - Fun show
  • Dresden Files - need to catch up
  • Flash Gordon
  • Reruns of anything that I have missed
  • Pretty much anything HD


  • Harry Potter
  • Transformers

What I am playing

Now back to my game of Carcassonne.... darn game is addictive. And the best part is that you can play heads up, unlike Catan...

T-minus 9 days until Phase III... 2 weeks of hell in Alabama.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Fun (or not so fun!) with Physics

While at Kings Dominion the GF and I ran into someone with a tenious grasp on physics (far beyond the wonderful comment that my mom made earlier this week.... "What goes down must come up".... hehe.... that will be a common line for us for quite some time to come).

They have a number of water slides there, and the one I wanted to try was called "Night Slider" - "the world's tallest enclosed dark tube slide". Sadly due to this womens misunderstanding of cause and effect I was unable to give it a whirl. Apparently right at the bottom you come off and keep heading down the water to slow you down... but this woman had the misfortune of standing up immediately upon hitting the bottom, which immediately caused her to flip over and onto the ground by the slide (solid concrete mind you) and slid for some 20 feet. She tried to play it off but my GF stopped her and pointed out that her shirt was ripped, then she saw her backside(major road rash, though it was hard to see since she was a black woman and luckily wearing a t-shirt). I only saw some of it, and then had to dodge her BF as he barreled down the stairs to join her. In the end it looks like she can chalk up the shirt, an couple of days/weeks of bandages (luckily her BF was a paramedic so she should have good help in that area) and one massively hurt pride/embaressing story to tell (or to desperately pray that it never gets mentioned again).

Sadly the ride was closed for the rest of the day so I didn't get my chance to try.

Weekend update

So other than the ruined weekend (which I still feel I haven't made up enough for to my GF) it was a pretty good weekend & 4th.
Had a great night out drinking on the 3rd with the GF and some of her friends. Love Cafe Asia's Happy Hour deals! By far one of my favorite restaurants in the area. Tried some Ginger beer at Dr. Dremo's (my how I will miss that place). Then a movie at home.

I was lucky that I won a drawing to see the Fireworks from the top of my building (pictures to come) along with my GF and parents. It was definitely a cool way to take in the fireworks. If you have the chance its among the most civilized ways to check it out, AC and free food.... hard to pass up.

Went to Kings Dominion on Friday. We started late (didn't get there til 1300) but it actually worked in our favor (since we could stop by Sonic for lunch and then avoid some of the heat of the day). Lines were longish (though I still love the Volcano). Popped over to the water park, rode some of the great rides (Tornado wins for the best water ride ever... now they just need to automate the lugging of the raft up... Zoom Flume was fun too.). Other than realizing that Tomb Raider:Firefall was so not for us (leading to a good 40 minute break) the rest of the rides were fun. Still need to go back and hit some of the rides again and do clean-up on some of the ones we skipped.

Then after an early start for me on Saturday (3 hours to get through the physical at Sandston) we went downtown to Chocobottom, stopped in a brewpub for lunch, hit this place called the Railstation further down the street for dessert (some awesome Gelato and some pastries), did some window shopping and browsing. Then we went to the GF's Sister place over by Charlottesville (where of course I wore my VT gear everywhere). A great dinner and wine (me and the GF basically by ourselves killed the 2 bottles that brought), some playing with a friendly 2yo, then bed. A nice brunch in the downtown mall (more VT gear , hehehe) then off for home. Then I got to play with my nephew (making this the weekend of the 2yo) then off to an early bed.


My countdown clock continues for my disappearance for 2 weeks (crikee, I even dreamed about the Army stuff last night, something that I HATE when it happens). 10 days before I head out. I blame the physical I got on Saturday (which completely ruined my GF's plans for heading to the beach.... I think that I hate that more than anything else. The Army can mess with me as much as it wants, I am so used to it. But messing with loved ones? Completely UNACCEPTABLE.. I don't think my GF has ever seen me so worked up as I was when this happened(one week from when we were to head out on vacation... you would think that they would have noticed this issue before that and allowed me to plan). I am so not used to decisions that I made (joining the Guard in this case) having adverse affects on others. Guess I had better get used to it given that I am mere weeks away from commissioning.
That and making me get up early on one of my last free weekends? What the heck was I thinking when I signed up??!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

United Flight 93

So now that I have had a day or more to process it I can write a bit about it.
On the way back from Pittsburgh we took US-30 for a more scenic route back. And then I saw the sign and pointed it out to the GF. She then asked me if I wanted to go, and to be completely honest I hesitated.... I had to take a second to think about it but after a little consideration I decided that I could handle the place. So then I indicated that we should head over (its about 3 miles off US-30). We didn't talk much on the way in, a little mention of "United 93" (which I still haven't worked up the nerve to watch... I may watch it in the next couple of weeks before I head off for AT) but overall it was a quite drive in.

The memorial is pretty moving. I know that there are plans for a formal monument/park and I am sure that it will be very tasteful and respectful, but the one that is there now is very raw... You can still feel the respect and sadness people feel about this event.

I don't think I spoke more than a handful of words while at the site. I really felt that I opened my mouth too much I would probably end up crying, since it was such a moving place. We took in the views from the site, looked at the memorial wall where people still place objects and checked out the plaques that were placed there. The whole time that I was there I felt that I was on the edge of crying. We stayed about 15 minutes and then resumed our ride home. I don’t think I talked until we were about 10 miles away…

I didn't take any pictures there (and neither did the GF). It just didn't feel appropriate. Maybe for some people it is but in my heart I will always remember the place and don't need pictures of the place... it just seems macabre.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Live Free or Die Hard

After my fun in Pittsburgh (and an EXCELLENT meal at Generous George's in Alexandria) the GF and I went off to see the late showing ofDie Hard 4 at AMC Hoffman 22 (love this theater... so brings back the majesty of the movie theater). Surprisingly packed (we got just about the last 2 person spot in the theater).

So first of course as a native Washingtonian let me just rant for a little..... I HATE it when they use stand-in cities for my hometown (at least this one didn't have any Metro scenes.... those are just too painful when you have the BART or LA Subway standing in). Skyscrapers, odd toll lanes in odd tunnels, street names that don't exist.... ugh.... And the bad-guy helo's would so not have been able to get into the areas that it did (can you say interdicted airspace?)... And then you toss the whole cyber part in.... its not like I don't work in this field or anything.... too many things to comment on there.

That said..... almost the perfect summer movie. Excellent pace, cast was perfect (even down to my boy, Kevin Smith, as Morlock - the super hacker)... it was smooth... the pacing was excellent (never a glance at watch/phone moment), the requisite catch-phrases, plot made some sense and above all was well nigh-perfect on the whole stunts and effects category (they so deserve something when the Oscars come around).

9/10... An instant classic summer movie.


(with an "h".. the German in me just wants to leave it off apparently)
So this weekend I agreed to go with the GF to a family event in Pittsburgh. I decided that since she has met my family (the joys of living close to home) that it was only fair (and now since I learned on Friday that I would have to cancel on our beach trip (thank you Uncle Sam for scheduling a fricking physical at the last minute on me) that it was early pennance for that).

So after stopping at this cute little breakfast place in Gaithersburg it was on to Pburgh... Met the whole slew of family that day and next. Experience Eat 'N Park and then got a slew of Smile cookies to bring home (or to attempt... very few of them survived the trip home..).

Me and a Smiley:
(Special note... don't do this to someone while driving..... the car moved in bad way when she saw me do this to her on the trip back)

Then it was a quick stop for shopping (hello outlet mall..... me and mr Amex got a little workout and my wardrobe increased) and then home.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Too easily amused.

so the GF is taking care of a friends dogs for the past couple of days.....

And yep... I sent the following last night after stopping by and letting them out for a bit...

Subject: Who let the dogs out?

I let the dogs out. Woof woof!

Nope, still hasn't gotten old.

And thats not counting the times that I have gone "woof woof" when she has said in conversations that she "needs to go and let the dogs out"..

Ah the simple pleasures in life.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

World is small

so I Facebook.... I am fascinated by it and other social networking sites (you name it and I probably have a profile on it)...
Today in adding a friend of my older brother's, AR, I got a message from a girl I went on a few dates with a couple of months ago who also knows AR...... such a small world, noted here, here and here

Oh and ..... GO DC UNITED... a little rain delay seemed to have helped them... 4-1.... NICE!
Too bad my boys in Red White and Blue couldn't pull it off too. Though the victory over Mexico last Sunday assuages some of that angst....

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

So I am all about religious freedom. It’s the most basic foundation of this country. But the practice of the burka (or nijab or whatever) goes too far... We also live in a free society where there is accountability and individuality of our actions. The very fact of obscuring the face, of turning women into something in the background makes the bile rise into my throat. And then you toss in my standard concerns about security (ummm... yes... it was the person wearing the black burka... that’s just a threat). And you add in how important eye and face contact is here in one of the most Western of countries, where looking the other person in the face is so key to establishing relationships and trust...

Ugh, this reminds me of how its trying to creep into the States (and for the most part we are holding our ground.... for things from a pure security point of view (I am still in shock/awe that one woman down in Florida wanted her Drivers License to have her wearing a veil....)). There is accommodation and then there is adaptation. This is yet another example of how the US is no longer the melting pot that we are so proud of.... not in the world of instant communication and the ever shrinking niche groups.

Fracking Hot

And what is my brain telling me? That I need to go for a run? I must be on crack.... DC Weather is just short of Hell today... Definately an indoor run.

So I survived the weekend (which, par for the course, wasn't as bad as I built it up to be). Lots of fun at the range (and actually learned something useful for my career, how to run a range). Qualified in my first shoot (which is why I will never wear glasses for shooting... I had the worst time qualifying during basic because of them). Passed my APFT (though I still need to watch what I eat since I get weighed at Phase III too).

Watched a depressing movie last night (Catch And Release). Perhaps not the best movie to watch with your GF. Nothing like a movie where the guy dies right before the wedding to make women nervous. I really did like Kevin Smiths character though... he is so one of my favorite people in Hollywood. On the plus side my Tivo Series 3 is working again (the replacement finally showed up and I got it operational on Monday.... and then Comcast had to send people out to call this in(to reactivate my Cablecards into the new Tivo).... Even the techs were calling this retarded).

Two great places to eat that I have been at:
  • The Italian Store - LOVE this place. Best subs around and some of the best Pizza outside NYC.
  • Lost Dog Cafe - Best beer selection in Arlington. The Dog Collars were great... tabasco + onion rings. And the Pizza was top notch.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Why I serve...

I have mulling this one for a while, since several people (most recently my GF) have asked what was I thinking when I joined the Army (more particularly the Virginia Army National Guard). After all, I was 28 years old, had a good job, a nice place to live and lots of things to keep me distracted.

But in 2005 I was in the recruiters office, and then MEPS (Military Entry Processing Station) to swear myself in (for my most stressful day ever, signing up for the military and learning that my offer on a condo had been accepted). I never even had the chance to move into my new place before shipping off to basic (I had been staying at my parents at the time).

There are a bunch of reasons... These are the prime ones:
  1. I LOVE this country.... and if every else thought that the other guy was willing to protect it (in whatever manner the legally elected leaders of this country direct us to act) then we wouldn't have the best people protecting it.
  2. 9/11..... 'nuff said. I was approximately 2 miles from the Pentagon on that morning.
  3. My family. My Dad is retired Navy.. I love and respect him for that and I always wanted to live up to that legacy.
There are times that I wonder what the heck I was thinking (OCS is hard and makes you wonder at times). There have even been a few dreams that I get an honorable discharge for whatever non-harming reason. But in the end I stay in and try my best. Because I have never failed or quit and I am not about to begin now.... Hooah!

I get like this sometimes, right before drill.... I made it a point not to date new women in the week before since I am sometimes not the most optimistic person right before OCS drill (since its the first time that things have not come easily for me).

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

More Movies!

So I think now I have seen more movies in the theater this summer than last year.... Which is 2, which is so sad.
Saw "Fantastic Four - Rise of the Silver Surfer" last night at the Tyson Corners AMC. I think that it was the first time I have been to Tysons in ages, though it was a good visit, since I found some new stuff for the wall (needed something new, and I loved my new purchases from Z Gallery.... a great framed photograph of SF and this neat old map of the known world) and stopped into Ruby Tuesday for dinner (not too much since I am on an Atkins kick this week... hate the weigh ins that are associated with the APFT).

FF was an okay movie.... it felt very linear and really had no suprising plot points, everything was pretty obvious and there was no dramatic tension at all... It did have some fun points and overall it was an ok (5 out of 10) movie. Though I based on the preview I REALLY want to see Transformers....

Monday, June 18, 2007

Fun weekend!

After the blogger HH (and after recovering the next day.... got up just a wee bit late). Then it was off for a long walk (Courthouse to Adams Morgan (the scene of the crime last night) then over to Foggy Bottom for a Metro ride back home). Met up with the GF (and one of her friends) for lunch at my parents place (I think my Mom likes it that there is so much more Estrogen around her between most of her boys (I have 4 brothers.... yep.. she had 5 sons...)). Then off to the pool with the Girls and my Roommate, where upon I didn't put on enough sunblock....

A quick bit of lunch at the parents, then off to the DC United game against the Chicago Fire (3-1... hooah!). Watched "Children of Men" with the GF then off to bed. Children of Men wasn't as good as I expected (and yep, I had the HD-DVD problems with this disk that have been written about.... thank god the other side had the standard DVD format on it). Way less action than expected, VERY depressing, kind of confusing, and overall not the best film... definitely overrated compared to all the press that it has received.

Brunch with Dad and family. Then I hung out at my parents for most of the day, took my nephew Conor to the park (whew.... it was hot), and just generally chilled for most of the day.

Then for a fun treat, my GF got me and my family passes to Riverdance at Wolf Trap. My parents had seen it a number of years ago, but me and D had not. It pretty impressive. I am in awe of those dancers, the Irish Ones (gotta give props to my peeps), the Tap Dancers, the Russians and the musicians. A very enjoyable show and a great way to spend a lazy Sunday Evening. Everyone in my family was very happy that R could get us the tickets.


So hopefully I didn't creep out anyone out at the HH (its wierd to be there and already know so much about the person you are talking to, while they know nothing about you... other than that you know way too much about them). I think thats why I choose to open my own, since I figured it was only fair (that and like no one will read it so its like a diary). I think it would be wierd to meet someone like that but it was a lot of fun.

I love reading other peoples blog since it gives such an interesting insight into other people (and why read biographies when you can read about someone reacting to current events at the same time as you... and have the chance to meet them.)

So really this blog exists out of my sense of fair play..

Sunday, June 17, 2007


You would think that 30 years of being me (Irish & German) would teach me some respect of the sun (or as some geeks refer to it as, the daystar.... love that name). Or at least the importance of putting on sunblock...

I blame the GF for the suggestion, "its a nice day, lets spend it by the pool....."
And then the following results...

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Blogger HH

So I went to the blogger HH at Grand Central Bar (or as my gf referred to it... the nerdfest... hah... little did she know how cool everyone who showed up was.....):
  • Meeting the lovely authors of:
    • Love is Blonde - You looked great this evening and was glad to that you were the first blogger that I read that I met
    • A Total Waste of Makeup - Even though your went to MD it was a pleasure meeting you!
    • Grateful Dating I went kayaking in Monterrey Bay.... a few drinks and my brain dumps... sorry I thought that your cat was a bunny
    • Kristin of Candy Sandwich - Loved your stories (and honestly, loved the cleavage...)
  • And the cool lads behind
    • I-66 of Quarter Volley - Great to meet you and hope you have fun at the game tomorrow1
    • ROOSH V - really, you did get me out of bad relationship.... just a link to your site....
    • Ar-Jew-Tino - yep, one of your coworkers dated my youngest brother... small world... further confirmation of my theory here and here
    • And a couple of other guys, like the one in the poker t-shirt and the guy who like Larry Niven (dude, the authors name is Rachel Caine... sorry)
And a few others that names escape me (sorry, I blame the many drinks I have had tonight.....)

Thursday, June 14, 2007


So I also am obsessed with zombies.... (I think I creeped out my roommate when she asked why I owned firearms and I drolly said, to take care of the zombie uprising). I love watching movies with them, books (World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War and The Zombie Survival Guide ... as well as comics The Walking Dead Book 1 (Walking Dead) ) all amuse me. So when I saw this : Blog like its the end of the world its too tempting(even though I am late to the party)...


I woke like any normal day... Put some tea on, chilled in front of the Tivo and then realized I was late for work. Slipped on my iPod and headed out the door... Just like any other day. In my iPod bliss I made it all the way to work without noticing anything unusual..
Then about noon the call came in.... "This is a blue moon exercise, report to the nearest military base ASAP". Now I thought this was weird... As an OCS Army Guardsman I am in training and pretty much useless. But orders are orders and off I went to home (I walk to work) to retrieve my uniform and car to drive over to Ft. Myer.. It was then that I noticed things were turning hinky. Sirens were sounding everywhere, the phone lines were so packed that I was unable to call anyone and the streets seemed oddly deserted.. Then I heard the moan carried by the wind that quickened my pace back home. Once there I flipped on the TV, grabbed my uniform (good old comfy ACU), went to my closet after getting a feel for what was happening and started to load my magazines. Thank god I had been to the range..
So there I was, Army uniform, web gear, camelback, 4 pistols, an AK on my back and one in my hands along with a backpack with all my additional ammo and weapons (I knew this day would come). And then I saw them..... pouring down the hill.. For you see, Arlington Cemetery is right around the corner... they had all woken up and looked really hungry...

It was then that I knew that I wasn’t going to get anywhere anytime soon and I realized my mission had changed.

First priority was to protect the people in the building. The uniform helped. I got 20 people (it was the middle of the day) off the basement, 1st& 2nd floor, stopped the elevators on the 5th floor, killed the entrance to the garage in the closed position (I hated that keycard reader and it was so satisfying to put a bullet into it) and then started to plan. The stairwells were the biggest concern. We put as much debris into them as possible, more than enough to stop them from being opened in any time.

By this point I had people arranged in teams. Some were securing water into every available container (can't be sure how long the taps would continue to run), others were placed so that they could report on what was going around the building.. I have been taking shots at the zeds from whatever good angle I can find... god they stink and the piles of bodies are growing higher. Power is starting to be a concern and I am not sure how much longer it is going to hold. Please tell me that this is going to end well, but the reports I have seen show that this is happening everywhere. Its getting dark and I need to arrange shifts so that we have a watch at all times. God I hope my family is all right.
God Bless everyone and good luck.. And if God is around, this would be the time for some miracles..

Hopefully we will be around in the morning,
OC Daniel

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

So I have a confession...

I love Anime...
Just to give you an idea... This is my collection:

But thats not all...

And just for the heck of it... Manga.... (and some very cool webcomics)

Yep... addicted to the stuff... And all types.. Not just SF (my true love) but a little bit of everything, from the high school shows to just the odder Japanese sitcommy type shows...

I think I need a intervention..


who authorized the rain on a day I just wanted to chill in the pool? Even after taking yesterday off (the joys of federal employment, many sick leave days) I still want to just relax and try to get my neck to return to normal (though my brilliant idea to go for a 7.5 mile run yesterday can't have done it good). On that note, I am doing very well in my training for the MCM.... Many more miles than last month.

Is it wrong that I am in shock (and amused) that someone actually commented here? Shout out to Dan at conservative futurist for actually stopping by (mainly because apparently he shares my penchant for worrying about a nuclear attack, hence what led me to his site in the first place... it must be why we are both fans of Jericho).

I have decided to go to the one of the Blogger Happy Hours.... This one in fact, run by inowpronounceyou . Particularly since my GF is working that night, so it seems like a good excuse to knock a few drinks back before starting, as my friend PW would say, a "carbpocalipse" before my APFT the following Sunday... Me and Mr. Atkins will resume our friendship next week (mmm... meat.....)

Monday, June 11, 2007


I hurt.... No more wooden roller coasters for me this year (my neck is killing me). The GF and I went up to Hershey Park on Sunday. Lots of roller coaster goodness, though I had issues after one of the wooden coasters and then this wierd ride that bring you into the sky and then spins you around 2 axises.... After a little recovery time then we went back at it again. We both LOVED the really fast ones. The hanging feet ride, Great Bear was a ton of fun (almost as good as my beloved Volcano down at KD) and we liked it enough to hit it again.. Same with the super fast ride, Storm Runner, was fantastic... I don't think I have ever run into a ride quite like this (this kicks the Hypersonic at KD's ass).. Finished the day up with a funnel cake and (of course) some chocolate. Next on the list is KD.

And to bring further evidence to my whole small world theory. At a bday party for one of my GF's friends I was talking to these two guys about army stuff (since I had just gotten the classic "high and tight" on friday for my battlefield visit on Saturday) and they mentioned this guy that they knew down in NC who was in the guard. Turns out he was in the class ahead of me in OCS (and their resident techie, hence my interaction with them) and when I heard the name I was all "repeat that again?" They even called him later in the night and talked with him for a minute or so.

Staff Ride, Saturday - Never heard of this concept before.... Basically Army officers take field trips to various historical sites and give presentations and review the history. Mine was actually pretty fun, it was given by a retired BG who really knew the history of this battle site that I had never heard of before we started the planning for this event. Cold Harbor was a battle fought almost almost a 150 years ago (June 1864 to be exact) and you can still see the trenches that were in use at the time....

Amazing.. And here I was thinking that Trench Warfare was something that really came into play in WWI whereas it was being done all the way back then. Cold Harbor represented a catastrophic mistake (Gen. Grant is quoted as saying, "Cold Harbor was one of the biggest mistakes that I made", in his memoirs). Almost 7000 casualties in about 39 minutes as the Union Soldiers pressed against deep trenches that the Confederates had spent the better part of 2 days digging before the assault (and that the Union Generals seemed to be oblivious to when they ordered their men into the breach... though the soldiers knew the score, they were placing the names and next of kin on notes attached to the back of their uniforms the night prior to the assault). Tragic.

Friday, June 08, 2007


So is it wrong to gloat? Nah. That spoiled princess really needs that time in Jail, not enjoying her time sitting in a house. I would like to believe that it will change her but my instinct is that it will not... She has absolutely no concept of reality (except "reality" shows) and its a grand cosmic joke that she would even claim to complain that something is "not right".
Grow up girl.... and I have a recommendation..... hire a fricking driver, there is absolutely no reason that you should be behind the wheel of any vehicle... EVER.

I am a moron..

What the frack possessed me to go out for a 6 mile run on the hottest (to date) day of the year, in its full Washington (read: muggy beyond belief) glory at noon!?!? But I survived and I suppose I am all the better for it (given that I am training for a marathon in October and hell... I mean Alabama in the middle of the summer... probably really good training for that, though no matter what I do it sucks.).
But at least I will have a fun weekend (which yet again involves getting up early). Tonight is a bday party for a friend of the GF. On Saturday I have to go on a "Staff Ride" tomorrow with a retired general who will be giving us a briefing and then a walking tour of Cold Harbor (which is actually pretty). It could be interesting if it wasn't so darn early. Then another bday party for another of the GF's friends. Sunday its off to Hershey Park.... so ready for some rollercoaster goodness..

Now I just need to cross my fingers that my roommate finds a job, so that I don't have to look for a replacement if she heads up to NYC....

Thursday, June 07, 2007


Are you kidding me? The nuts campaign for Jericho actually worked?!?!??!? CBS must really be worried about their schedule that they are willing to undertake this. Not that I don't appreciate it, since I really, really hated the way that they left it as a question mark.

Now I just need to catch up on some of my summer shows.... Get back up to speed on Stargate, SG: Atlantis, Battlestar Galactica (maybe even get the GF to watch a few with me, irregardless of her aversion to SF) and whatnot.

And since the theme is cancelled shows, I watched last weeks Studio 60.... I will sort of miss it, though they are playing pretty heavy handed here with the captured brother thing....


Such a sad list for me..... On Monday I saw my first movie of the year (hint Hollywood, because I used to be one of your best customers.... to the tune of 100+ movies in the theaters a year) and it was great! And its not like I don't live a 6-7 minute walk from a movie theater or anything.....

Knocked Up was fricking funny. A tad long and maybe dragging at a point or 2 but overall a lot of fun. It handled the situation really well (the pro-life crowd must be so torn by this movie.... the people here represent the lifestyle that they must abhore but they make the correct decision) and also did a great job dealing with relationships after they have been together a while (the sister and her husband). Hopefully my gf recovers her hearing from me laughing so much at this movie.... A very solid A from this very picky reviewer....

Now I really need to see: "Hot Fuzz", "28 Weeks Later", Spiderman 3 and Shrek the 3rd...

Wednesday, June 06, 2007


Okay, so in the past week or so, 3 articles on our obsession with pets, Lost cat, lost heart, Do Americans love pets too much? , and A Pampered Pet Nation.

Okay, so let me preface this with this.... I love pets... they are fun to interact with, comforting at times and overall a pleasure to have around. I personally have never had a pet (I refuse to count the fish I had as a child or my younger brother...) but am often around those that have them. My last 2 roommates have had cats and they were/are great (Fel is probably the best dog-cat I have ever met (she earns the title for being a extremely social cat)), though I really appreciate the fact that they are not my cats (too much responsibility). I couldn't even imagine having a dog, it would just feel too constraining (having to walk them every day, etc).

But I think that we have gone too far. We are anthro-morphizing these animals... They are not humans.. I think that there are some people that would let a human die in order to protect their pets.. They do serve a purpose but it is pretty disturbing when you think that there are a huge number of animals that get better treatment (in both food and medical terms) than a large component of the population. People are not having children and are instead treating these animals as though they were, buying them toys, daycare(for gods sake, fricking daycare... they are animals, they can survive pretty well on their own), and even (god help us) psychoanalysis. People... please.... for the love of God... If you are going to treat a pet like a child either a) go to your bedroom with your SO and don't come out until you are ready produce some offspring b) adopt c) go volunteer somewhere.... As long as your pet has food, a clean environment, a good chunk of attention every so often they are going to be pretty content. Save the love for humans.

Monday, June 04, 2007


So it was a good weekend. Dinner with the Parents on Friday. Race for the Cure on Saturday morning (bad trend here, waking up earlier on the weekends than on the weekdays) where I got a repspectable 25 minutes. I so know how to run this race now, though I suspect that it will be my last (way too crowded). Amazingly I managed to link back up with everyone that I went there with (my family has a habit of losing people during races.... how they manage not to see me boggles the mind).

Saturday also involved a hike with the GF ( which was kind of fun, to learn some stuff while getting a little walking in. Luckily the rain held off and it was a pretty good event (and the off to one of my favorite bars in Rosslyn, Continental..... love places that have a happy hour on a Saturday (until 9 no less)). Then we popped over to El Pollo Rico for some chicken and fries (awesome stuff) and finished Casino Royale (great movie, enjoyed it a lot.... though I think that modern spycraft isn't as entertaining as it was.... there was a lot of cell phone stealing in this film).

Then I wasted my Sunday. Class Meeting for OCS. At the RTI.... so 3+ hours each way (and in the rain, combined with leaving early (0700)). All for a little over 3 hours of talking... I can't wait until this bit is over. 6 weeks until Phase III. Dinner with the family (GF met my parents... can't have been easy for her). Then it was Clerks II on HD-DVD.... Love Kevin Smith films.

Re-Use of my "Cast of Thousands"

So I went to a really small school (HB Woodlawn, one of the best HS in the area based on the way they rank schools and of course IMNSHO). My graduating class was all of 60 or so people, so even over the years to run into someone who went to my HS its a notable event. And being a big proponent of my school I am on the email listserve for it so as I was reading this latest thread (some people were complaining that this small business owner (actually 2 different ones) decided to mention their businesses and invite the members to come to the store... some moron accused them of spamming the group (though in my mind its no different than the messages that relate to artistic events that former students have undertaken or participated in... I think the inner anti-capitalist comes to the front for some of these people (my school was VERY liberal... and not in the free thinking kind, the dogmatic, lets not listen to the arguments))).
But as it turns out the sister of the woman who posted actually went to Phase I with me last summer in WV (60 people, maybe 10 women, so the name definately popped... turned out she graduated 4 years ahead of me).

Combine that with running into a girl in OCS that I used to work at with at the movie theater and you can't help but remark on how small of a world it is..

Friday, June 01, 2007


So after a 8 year break, my gf R dragged me to my first concert in a long time (I was aiming for the decade mark but since she is all about Wolf Trap and it cost me nothing I was down with it). I did pick up a bottle of wine (a pink pinot grigio) and did drive to the event but it was basically free for me. We saw "Huey Lewis & The News", a group that I had never seen live (since my live list is pretty short). I think things were better in that instead of "rushing the lawn" we went to one of her friends place and ate there (as the insects tried to eat me.... I am starting to come up with a hate-hate relationship with nature...).

Other than that, caught up on some TV (Boston Legal Finale), introduced my roommate and gf to Settlers of Catan on the XBOX360 and started some new books.

Thursday, May 31, 2007


So now that I have your attention.... On Saturday I get to run in a 5K for one of my favorite causes (and favorite part of the body), the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. Of course I use "run" since there are so many people along the course that running really isn't an option for the first mile or so (as you shuffle, jog, and dodge your way around the course). But its a good cause (any cause that protects breasts has my support!) and its fun to do since most of my family participates (this year almost everyone will be there, 2 of my younger brothers and my parents).

I am currently getting myself ready for a number of races/athletic activities. Right now of course I am getting ready for my APFT (Army Physical Fitness Test) that I need to pass in order to go to Phase III of OCS..... I am so being careful at most points, lots of running, real close monitoring of my diet (excluding last weekend I am doing a pretty good job, though my pantry looks really bare since I have removed most temptations, going to the grocery story (or commissary in my case) is kind of boring since I have to ignore most of the options), and lots of push-ups and sit-ups.

Then after that is done the next items come up, the Army Ten Miler followed a couple of weeks later by the Marine Corps Marathon (my first and only marathon.....).

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Oh Happy Day!

So I logged onto VCU's site (as I have been compulsively doing for the past week or so) and lo and behold this is what appears!

  • Unofficial Graduate School Academic Record
  • Degrees Awarded:
  • Master of Science May 19, 2007
  • School of Engineering
  • Major: Computer Science
  • Cum GPA: 3.000
So now I too can contribute to the factor that Arlington County as being the most educated city in the US (In 2005, slightly over 66% of adults age 25 and older had a bachelor’s degree or higher and about 36% had a graduate or professional degree. )

So is it wrong that the first 2 things I did were to print out the transcript request form (hello raise) and a duplicate diploma form (so going up in my cube at work)?

5 years, 15 classes, 2 schools (thank god that VCU allowed me to transfer some classes)....
Now to go sign up for the next class for my next Masters Degree....

Memorial Day

So I am late, not really surprising...
For most of us this is just another nice 3 day weekend, But this day probably means more to me now that I serve in the military (and odds are that a number of the people that I have gone through training with have already been to Iraq or Afganistan, a few have probably been injured or even killed).
I definately made time in the busy schedule of a holiday weekend to take a few moments to remember those brave souls that gave their lives to protect this, the greatest of all countries. I hope everyone does this (though I suspect that most will never even take a few seconds to think about this sort of stuff.... heck, some of them can't even bring themselves to take the few seconds it takes to remove their hat at sporting event (yeah, I am talking to you, Mr. Mid-50's guy next to me at the DC United game... don't think that some of us don't notice and keep a little mental list)). So for all of you that have served, thanks from my heart (I still don't consider what I do as service, I get embarassed when people have come up to me in uniform and thanked me... 2 years in and all I have done is train....).

God Bless all of the people who have served and paid the ultimate price and God Bless America!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Go DC!!!

That was a fun game!! Love going out and seeing them score almost immediately!!! Too bad C, my 2 yo nephew, was sitting on my lap (and then I made my sister-in-law all nervous by lifting him up high... as if I was going to drop him....). Brutal game but a fun one to watch (when C or R wasn't distracting me)...