Thursday, January 28, 2010

Glub, Glub

Yeah, I know, I'm a week late with that review title. I just haven't had a chance to talk about all the rain last week yet. And I can't let a good title go.

And yes, it rained like crazy last week. All five work days, in fact. It was so hard that the street here at work was flooded most of the week. Granted, that doesn't take much. But it did keep me from working out all last week. I hate wading in water when I have to sit in an office for the rest of the day in wet shoes.

For the most part, it really didn't affect me too much. I got my normal puddle in the garage, but it didn't get too big. The streets were rainy, but traffic was actually moving at an appropriate speed.

The one exception was my office. Wednesday night, I looked down to realize I was sitting on wet carpet. There was a small puddle in one corner. I quickly moved my computer onto my desk. This was right before work, so I went home. The next day, they came and dried out my office. Yesterday, they finally came back and cleaned the carpets. So today I was able to actually move back in. It's so nice to be home!

Of course, it took a couple hours to get my computer up and running again. I moved it into the cubical I had used the last few days. But today, it didn't want to connect to the network. They wound up having to replace the network card to get me connected.

Anyway, since the floor of my office is actually underground, the water seeped in through the wall. Hopefully, they will get some time to stop it so it doesn't happen again.

My old office got just a little bit of water. We got a tad in the restroom. But half the carpet in my office was wet. Go figure.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

What's Leaving My Nightstand - January 2010

Can you believe we're already four Tuesday into 2010? Neither can I. But here we are, and it is time once again for What's on Your Nightstand. Since I just finished a book on my lunch hour, it is definitely still fresh in my mind.

I finished Alice I Have Been by Melanie Benjamin (link will take you to my full review) which I read for the Alice in Wonderland Reading Challenge.

the book is a fictionalized biography of Alice Liddell Hargreaves, the inspiration for Alice in Alice in Wonderland. It traces her friendship as a child with Charles Dodgson (aka Lewis Carroll) and the ramifications that had on her adult life.

The book was expertly written and provided some very real characters. Once I finally got into the story (about a third of the way through), I wanted to see how it was going to turn out.

The problem with the book was the underlying sexual tension between Alice as a child and the adult Dodgson. It was just creepy. And the ultimate climax to the story was an unrealistic let down.

The only reason I heard about the book was because of the reading challenge, and if I had missed reading it, it wouldn't have been any great loss. Skip it.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Word Association For January 25th

I'm going to start this week with some word association.

  1. Food :: Delicious
  2. Death :: and Taxes
  3. Cafeteria :: Dinner
  4. Need :: Feed
  5. Born :: Identity
  6. Stitch :: in Time
  7. Badly :: Behaved
  8. Blocks :: Building
  9. Chuck :: Best TV Show on Tonight
  10. Spiral :: Bound

Seriously, if you haven't watched Chuck, start with season 1 today. That is an order!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Mini Review: Disney's Alice in Wonderland

So one thing I did over the weekend is rewatch Disney's Alice in Wonderland for the reading challenge I am part of.

It's just been a year since I watched it last, so it was still pretty fresh in my mind when I read Lewis Carroll's books back in October. I've already commented on this, but I do find how much they pulled from the second book to be amazing. (That's where Tweedledee and Tweedledum appeared, as well as the idea of an unbirthday.)

The movie has too many songs. This is especially true when Alice sings. They just slow things down.

However, the segments by themselves really are quite fun. My favorites are the parts with the Queen of Hearts (and the King) and the Mad Tead Party. I just love puns, and that scene has the best puns. I laugh every time I watch it.

If you follow Disney animation, you see it going through different periods, and this is definitely a 50's movie, from the choir that sings on some of the songs to the style of the animation. But it still is enjoyable today.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Say It Ain't So

I think my Saturday ultimate Frisbee pick up game is dying. Only two of us showed up this week. Scott and I threw the disc around for about half an hour or so, but that was it. It's hard to do much more than that with two people. I'm bummed because this was the closest game to me I knew about, and I loved playing as much as I have been this last year. If there's a way to jump start it again, I would love to participate.

Meanwhile, I also don't get to play tonight. My winter league team has our second game tonight, but it's been rained out. It was pouring earlier this afternoon. Right now, I am looking at blue sky. It will be interesting to see if that pattern continues. We've already done this dance once today.

And boy, has it been raining. This isn't just a little light rain like we usually get. When it has decided to rain, it has absolutely poured. The street where I work is part of a flood plain, and you couldn't cross the street without wading in water yesterday. It wasn't quite as bad today, but it was getting close.

And that's why I decided not to work out on my lunch hour today. But I can do the work out I was going to do at home, and that's the plan. I promise.

Anyway, the rain is supposed to continue all week. I guess we are getting hit by four storms in a row, and we're supposed to get close to 10 inches. Frankly, if you told me we'd had that much rain already, I'd believe it. I'm worried about mud slides, not where I live or work but in Southern California in general. But we really do need the rain, and I enjoy it.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Word Association for January 18th

I'm going to start off the week with this week's word association.

  1. Weak :: Muscles
  2. Flashy :: Sports Car
  3. Sack :: Lunch
  4. Business :: Meeting
  5. Purple :: People Eaters
  6. Fan :: Author
  7. Airline :: Flight
  8. Guide :: Book
  9. Lunch :: Sandwich
  10. Exercise :: Lunch

Okay, so I used Lunch twice. But I happened to see lunch down there near the bottom, and so that was on my mind. And since I've started exercising on my lunch hour....

Friday, January 15, 2010

Back to Excercise

The big news of the week is that I have really started excercising again. I went running both Monday and this morning before work. I hit the fitness center on my lunch hour Monday-Wednesday. Yesterday, I got my allergy shots. Today, the locker rooms were closed. Okay, so it was a bit of a lazy excuse, but it also allowed me to read, I mean take a nap in my car.

Of course, the biggest downside of all this is what it did to my knee. I tripped while out running Monday morning and really scrapped my right knee. Still really scabbed over, and it get irritated by my pants all day. I'm wearing shorts at home at night to help, something I never do this time of year. Still, it's not hurting as much as it was. I have a feeling I am going to have a nice scar there when it is all over.

Monday night I got to have a Chuck marathon. I watched all three hours of the premier in one sitting. My roommate Daniel watched them with me, although he doesn't want to get hooked on the show. I must figure out some way to change that. (Insert evil laugh here.) It was wonderful as always.

In other news, I completely finished Lego Indiana Jones last night. Honestly, I think that's the first video game I have ever beaten. Of course, usually, I stick to games like Tetris where you can't beat them. And I never got good enough at the Super Mario Brothers games to beat them. It would have helped if we could save them like we can the new Super Mario Brotthers game.

My friend Matt is in town this week for the Truth and Life Conference. I haven't seen him in years. He came over Wednesday night, and it was great to hang out with him for a few hours. I'm hoping to go visit before or after Trixie Camp this year.

Speaking of which, I really hope I can go. It's been too long since I made it. Granted, I did choose Disney World over Trixie camp one year. But we won't confuse me with the facts, okay?

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Word Association for January 13th

Just enough time to get this week's word association done.

  1. Resolutions :: Better
  2. Page :: Book
  3. Narrow :: Way
  4. Refuse :: To Do
  5. Fountain :: of Youth
  6. Grunt :: Groan
  7. Construct :: Lego
  8. Nightmare :: on Elm Street
  9. Inch :: Foot
  10. Instant :: Gratification

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Good Weekend

Yep, I had a good weekend. Wasn't nearly long enough, but they never are, are they?

Friday night was a nice, quiet evening at home. Exciting start, right?

Saturday I lazed around in the morning. I completed the Raiders of the Lost Ark levels on Lego Indiana Jones, which means I just need to complete the other two movies to finish the game. Eventually, I got moving, cut my hair, and left the house.

I decided to go see Sue Ann Jaffarian and two other authors at the Burbank Library. The talk started at 2. I left a little after 3, and it was still going strong. But I really wanted to play ultimate Frisbee that afternoon, too. Only six of us showed up, three of them high schoolers. I'm getting a little worried that this pick up game may be falling apart. I sure hope that isn't the case.

After I got home, I watched a movie with my roommate. Actually, that was the second movie I got off my DVR this weekend. Honestly, I didn't care for either one. The first was the Disney Channel Original Move Dadnapped. Very stupid. The one Daniel and I watched together was only slightly better - Mel Brooks' High Anxiety. Avoid both if you get a chance to see them.

We had just finished that movie when I got a phone call from our new roommate. He was a day early arriving, so the place wasn't quite as ready for him as I would have liked it to be, but it also gave me a free Sunday, which I am not going to complain about.

Sunday after church, I went shopping. Bought new running shoes, cotton free socks, and a pull up bar. Okay, so that last one isn't for the mud runs, but the first two definitely are.

And you read that right. I have signed up for the Irvine Lake Mud Run in April. So that's two mud runs I will be doing in the next 5 months. Daniel is doing that one with me, so I will have a training partner until April at least. After that, it will just be a matter of keeping the momentum going for the Camp Pendleton Mud Run two months later.

Sunday night was over to Joe and Erica's for Babylon 5 night. It was a great time as always.

You'll noticed there was no mention of the beach in there. Once again, I didn't take advantage of the nice weather and make it down to the beach. I had very seriously considered it when the new roommate showed up early, but decided I should do other things. Unfortunately, it looks like our 70 degree weather is drawing to a close. Probably won't want to go until March of April now. Oh well, I wouldn't change a thing I did this weekend.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Word Association for January 8th

I'm a bit late doing the word association this week, but here you go.

  1. 365 :: Days in a year
  2. Tombstone :: Arizona
  3. Dumb :: Blonde
  4. Intrusive :: Surgery
  5. Fat :: Lazy
  6. Axe :: Murderer
  7. Planned :: Escape
  8. Spike :: Buffy
  9. Bleach :: Blonde
  10. Shopkeeper :: Owner

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

2010 - The Year of the Mud RunS?

I'm sure I'd heard of mud runs in the past, but this last year was the first time I really paid much attention to them. And I started doing that when author Sue Ann Jaffarian said she was planning to do the Camp Pendleton Mud Run last June. I eagerly read her report and decided I was going to do it in 2010. along the way, I found the blog Muddy Runner, which only made me more anxious to do it.

I talked to some friends who originally expressed interest, but couldn't do it. Fortunately, I talked Josh into doing it late in December, and we got signed up on January 1st. Now we're both committed for June.

But this last week, I discovered the Irvine Lake Mud Run that is happening in April in Orange County. It's just over half of the length of Camp Pendleton run (3.8 miles vs. 6.2). It's also cheaper as long as I sign up in the next week or so.

And I am so tempted to do it. I think it would be fun. It would be a great way to see how I am doing in training for the longer one. It's cheaper. And did I mention I think it would be fun?

The problem comes in finding someone to do it with me yet again. I haven't asked Josh if he wants to do it or not. I'm sure half my friends will be rolling their eyes thinking I am crazy.

But maybe I am crazy.

Nah. That couldn't be it.

So, anyone out there want to get muddy?

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Christmas and New Years 2010

I'd apologize for my lack of thrilling updates, but I don't feel guilty at all. I was spending time with family and friends. And it was wonderful.

As per usual, I went to my parents for Christmas. We actually spent Christmas Eve in the Sierra foothills at my brother's in-law's cabin. That was a lot of fun and something very different. Fortunately, there was no snow since we didn't have chains for our car and had to drive down to my uncle's on Christmas day. The rest of the time was spent either playing games or visiting with the various people who want to come by and meet my niece.

And can I just say I still have the cutest niece in the world? She is absolutely so adorable!

When I got home, I was going to dig in and get the movies on the DVR watched and get some other stuff done. That didn't happen. Well, I did get one of the movies off the DVR. Instead, I was lazy some of the time. I played Lego Indiana Jones others (88% complete, but who's counting?) And I hung out with friends quite a bit.

I spent a good bit of time with Kurt and Kellie and Kenny and Katherine and their sons on New Year's Day, including throwing a football around. Let's just say I am a much better Frisbee thrower. And we played Kurt's Sports Resort Wii for a while, too. Must get now.

And over the weekend I spent quite a bit of time with Joe and Erica. I started out by helping them move some stuff from Erica's place into their condo. Then that night, Joe and I went to see Sherlock Holmes after the three of us had dinner at Olive Garden. Sunday night, I was back over at their place for a co-ed movie night. Poor Joe had to put up with Enchanted. I certainly can't complain because I was the one who brought the movie over in the first place.

On top of all of this, Daniel has a friend staying with us. They've been in and out since they went to the Rose Parade, the Rose Bowl, and the Fiesta Bowl in the last few days. They're wearing me out, and I'm just hearing about it.

But I have had some time to myself. For example, New Year's Eve, I headed to Magic Mountain. Just stayed long enough for a few rides before I left because I was getting cold.

And speaking of cold, I seem to have come down with one. It started out mildly enough, but it's really hit me hard, especially last night when I couldn't sleep because it was clogging my nose so much. Hopefully, I will get some sleep tonight.

The one thing I most regret not doing the last few days was hitting the beach. The weather has been downright beautiful, at least for January. It's been in the low 70's all year. Definitely weather to enjoy on a beach if you can. But I was too busy doing other things I just didn't have the time. Next time, right?

Friday, January 01, 2010

Finishing the Series Reading Challenges

Happy New Year!

When I discovered book blogger reading challenges, I was going to host one this year. But before I could get info posted, I saw two more that pretty much covered what I was going to do. So I am just going to join in with them.

The first is Series IV, hosted by Secret Dreamworld of Books. The dates of this challenge are December 1, 2009 - November 30, 2010. You are supposed to pick at least two series you have to finish and read a total of four books. I've got nine books from two series on my list, so I will definitely be fine.

Royal Reviews is also hosting the Finish That Series Challenge. This one is running for all of 2010. There is no minimum or maximum number of books. You just need to complete a series you've already started. There are four levels of participitation, and I'm going with Curious - Finish 2 series.

Okay, so I am reading one book on this list already. It won't count for the second challenge, but since I need to get all these books read before the end of November to be part of both challenges, I figure that's okay, right?

So, the series I will be finishing in 2010 are:

Odelia Grey by Sue Ann Jaffarian. I have three books to read:
Thugs and Kisses
Booby Trap
Corps on the Cob

The Sisters Grimm by Michael Buckley. I have six books to read:
The Problem Child
Once Upon a Crime
Magic and Other Misdemeanors
Tales from the Hood
The Everafter War
The Inside Story