Monday, March 5, 2012

Spring Broke 2012

Ramblings Post #184
There are certain social constructs that we can’t get away from. Things like birthday parties, the requirement that you hold the door for someone just the right amount of distance behind you, that you don’t automatically punch someone in the mouth for saying something egregiously stupid. Little things. And since I’m in college, well, college of sort, and because a number of college traditions are holdovers from when ours was an agrarian based economy, it was once again Spring Break.

Time off

Well, for the first time since I started, Spring Break actually meant a break. Well, not really.
Unlike my youth, were Spring Break meant a bohemian vacation, $50, the open road to somewhere, sleeping on the floor and hanging out, at my age and my need for a decent mattress to sleep on a trip anywhere would have meant funds I currently cannot spare. So I spent the Break at the house, cleaning, eating badly and working on little projects here there like my second presentation and my resume. The week wasn’t a total workathon however I did manage a few things that represented a break from the average.

Wait, that's not totally true.

Resume Building
I quit my job in the middle of a down economy.

That’s a statement that still gives me pause. I wasn’t laid off or fired; I walked in with a resignation letter and spent a week letting them get ready. But it had to be done. And now for the first time in nearly a decade I have to put together resume. And legal resumes for the most part only want your legal experience. And because I had a mortgage, went part time and my former job wasn’t in the legal area, I really don’t have any. I’ve been into to see the career counselors and had what I’ve put together reviewed a few times, but I’m still a little iffy. And because the translating my non-legal background into something that fills out the blank portion of my resume the creation of my cover letter is taking longer than I thought. Much longer.

Eating Badly

My routine since I’ve lost the weight has been kinda up and down. A few days a week I’m on it, no red meat, lots of fruits and veggies, plenty of water, little sugar or salt. I would just need to work on timing my meals properly and avoid occasionally adding a forbidden ingredient to spice up a meal, but for the most part I was good. Then break came. And I ate three boxes of cereal. And some cake. And some frozen pizza. And some ice cream. And some, well, you get the picture. Now I need to cleanse and I’m not looking forward to the bland while my taste buds get re-adjusted.


So, because I already had it, I started playing that NBA2k12. Like a lot of modern games, it fairly intricately designed program with single game capabilities, a blacktop option with no fouls, a franchise mode, and my personal favorite - single player career. In this mode, since they start you out with low character "rating" that you improve over time, I figured the beatings I was suffering through would eventually be overcome. But then, as I got into the game, I realized that something odd was happening. I haven't watched the NBA other than casually in quite a few years, but I'm fairly certain that even top guards weren't knocking down threes like layups. Well, maybe the top guards, but not the third string guards. In one game, somebody managed to drain six threes in six attempts...and there were still seven minutes to play in the first quarter. Something was a little fishy.

More than a little frustrated, and because I was supposed to be the league leading scorer and my computer generated teammates weren't that bad, I finally had to go to the well to figure out what was going on. Yes, I googled it. And it turns out; the game's default setting means that pretty much any open shot by the opposition will fall. And even some of the well covered ones. But if you change it "simulation", well then the third string guard doesn't suddenly turn into Michael Jordan when he hits the floor.

And suddenly the game is a lot more enjoyable. And because I know I can beat it if I play well, instead of formerly were I had to play perfectly, it means I can stop obsessing about it. And actually do something maybe, like research my presentation.

That's my player. Good ain't he?

My personal projects

I have a number of half-finished personal projects. My movie, a number of novels I’ve started, a number of web projects I’ve tossed around, even more short stories where the elements are not quite lined up. Stuff that's just notes. And spring break would have been a great time to pull one out, dust it off and start anew. That did not happen. See aforementioned frustration with Playstation.

Sunday afternoon

So I'm home, working on my negotiation prep when Spanky insists I raise up and head to Loca Luna. Now, one of my old college running partners has been throwing a Sunday afternoon promotion for forever which I have been promising myself I would drop through. From the pictures he posts, it seems like a fairly nice event. So, because my mind was starting to get crazy with various negotiation options, and was tired of growing envious of my classmates ski trip pics on FB, I threw on some clothes and headed north.

Loca is one of those spots that probably should be on Gordon Ramsey's Kitchen Nightmares, only they still have a good crowd so it may be a while before they get some help. Maybe it was the table I was at, which I noticed was at the focal point of all four of the room's main speakers, or the fact that the music was so loud that even conversations where you leaned into a person still had to be shouted that turned me off to the spot. Or maybe it was that Loca featured a live band that acted they were in concert instead of playing for a restaurant crowd. Or maybe it was the less than likable food (tapas) on a paper menu that looked like they didn't want to go to the trouble of trying. It had been looking kinda good, until I actually got there.

Spanky and Serve had apparently been sipping for some time before I got there, because despite all the detractors that were blatantly obvious to me, and later on I found out were obvious to them as well, they appeared to be having a good time. But then I found out later they were communicating via text instead of talking, which is really annoying. So the afternoon was spent watching them stare at the crowd and text each other, wondering why I wasn’t at home, sneaking in some more NBA2K12 before I had to put the Playstation back in the closet.

So, that’s my Spring Break

Barkeep, I’ll need a tall glass of water and nice house salad, no cheese. I’ve been so bad.

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