Archive for category Random


A long way from home I had the chance to take a look at myself in the mirror. I did no like what stared back at me. To say it was death is an over-exaggeration that wastes melodrama better suited for something else. It was not health however, and that is no less troubling then the hooded specter.

I am weary of mind and body at too young an age. I need to make some changes, of habits and thoughts, from ill to good.

I am just unsure of the correct path, and whether o not the will is there to make the arduous first step.

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Observations at a Train Station

Written a few months back, while waiting for the train.

Not quite the fringes of modern society, but the feeling is different. While at Penn Station, you can feel New York. It permeates everything. And that of course means there is more traffic, more people, more…..something. I cannot quite put a word to the feeling. To say ‘society’ or ‘life’ would take away from other places or even go so far as belittle them.

But the other places I have been do not compare to the magnitude of that which you see in New York City. So I sit here, in this ‘mid-water’ station. Seeing the folks that probably exists at Penn, but because there are so many people there, you never notice them. Here though, they are thrown into sharp relief in my worldview.

So is that where the problem lies? Is it my worldview that puts the emphasis on the ‘better-ness’? (for lack of a more appropriate or grammatically correct word) Is it me?

I try not to be judgmental, but that is lip service to the built in Puritan guilt that all Americans seem to have. And those that come here from somewhere else seem to learn. Of course I am being judgemental, that’s just another…something…that permeates the landscape of this country.

Moving on….

I wonder why it is that I seem to be 10 years behind the curve on most things. I’m starting the life of the traveling consultant when I should have been doing this when I was 23. I am making life choices and future commitments almost a full decade behind those in my same age group and sometimes younger.

I need to figure out how to make the best of it. I need to figure out how to break some REALLY bad habits that I have. I need to learn how to learn again. For my benefit, and for the benefit of others.

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Using Old Stuff Like New

Was digging through some old files on the laptop and found some tidbits that I wanted to blog about from two years ago that I never got a chance to put on the website. So I figured I’d post them now, so that you can see my stuff from two years ago and I can finally delete the files from my hard drive.

From April of 2008:

04/09/2008 – On the train ride home

Hipsters Abound!
Stayed later at work to take part in the monthly ‘meet and greet’ that the company has, I ended up taking a later L train from the office. Apparently, after 7pm all the hipsters get on the move. I wish I had a camera. There was the old hipster, who was more like an effeminate hippy with and assortment of silver jeweled rings and in skinny jeans; the Asian guy with big hair, and a scruffy 5 o’clock shadow in skinny jeans; the White Stripes look alike with bowler hat…and skinny jeans; and the rocker with the oversized “I’m a DJ and totally awesome” headphones in the sports blazer and skinny jeans.

I can’t get enough of hipsters.

They even have their own Olympics!

The Slob
On the train ride home, a guy sat down next to me and began to open some sushi he brought to eat, and begun such with his fingers. Stuffing giant pieces into his mouth and chewing like a cow. He had a bottle of water that he scrunched (making that annoying noise plastic water bottles make when scrunched) every time he took a drink. Once he finished, Hands greasy (i was almost expecting him to wipe them on my leg) he picked up the paper and began to flip through it. Wonderful companion on the train. I cannot wait until I move into the city. However, I’m not sure I’ll be allowed unless I get a pair of skinny jeans. 😉

From June of 2008

New York City in the Summer
Thoughts from the First Heat Wave of the Summer 6/8 – 6/10

New York has the ‘Smell of Humanity’ about it. Going into the subways, you are hit instantly hit by a hot musty smell reminiscent of feet, although much older and with more character. It is the smell of years and years of many people inhabiting a small area. The smell of detritus, garbage, sweat, and death. It makes you wonder how many people notice it, and how long it takes before it becomes just another smell in the background. Speaking of which, there was an overwhelming smell of ozone at 8th avenue and 14th street on the first day. The smell was heavy outside…I cannot imagine that is a good sign for such a short heat wave.

This heat wave made me appreciate the following:
– Central air and the prevalence of central air in Dallas in general.
– Made me put some REAL thought into buying a quality window unit.
– NYC cooks in this kind of weather, and another year of life gets burned into its surface.
– That I need to lose weight.

And there you go. Thoughts from when the city was new to me.

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Thoughts on the Train

I travel through all these places and rarely see anyone at work. I see the sites as they were left when the whistle blew on the previous Friday. Equipment parked, lights off and left to wait for the workers return on Monday morning. And upon my return, I see the same; Equipment parked and lights off. I see what is meant to be and what was, but I rarely see what is.

The marshlands of Jersey look peaceful, juxtaposed against the factories, bridges and highways that were built in them and around them. With the rising eastern Sun framing the entire scene, a ghostly image is created that mocks our modernity, as we mock the beauty of the natural world.

I sit at a desk in a windowless office with four other employees, in an office building that saw its prime pass over twenty years ago. Very little of it is occupied on a regular basis. An emptiness permeates portions of it…sections are dark and ignored. And walking into those areas feels as if you are entering another world, one where the life was taken without any notice or fanfare. Everything just…ended.

Listening to a pair of gentleman, who appear to work together, talking in the seats behind me. It amazes me how freely they talk in such a public environment. Have I unwittingly become a member of some secret club? Is there some unwritten law of traveling in Business Class, that all information is confidential and does not leave Business Class? I am not sure that I want to be a member…and no one even bothered to tell me what the dues cost….

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New York is moments, a point in time unlike the one before or next. One moment you are quietly riding the subway with all the other morning commuters and next there is a tejano band serenading the entire car. At the next stop, they move on and there is complete silence again. Moments.

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Flying at thirty five thousand feet always helps to clear the mind of the chaos that life is.

Staring out the window and seeing how large and small the world is makes my problems seem insignificant.

If you look hard enough, you can see the abyss staring back.

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This is Why I Can’t Have Nice Things

This picture shows my cracked and broken soul…..

You see what I did there? 😉

In recent years, and the Wife can attest to this, it has become difficult for me to keep a pair of dress shoes for more than 6-8 months. I am not exactly sure why this only seems to affect dress shoes, but my sneakers (or tennis shoes as the Wife calls them) seem to last forever. It might be the way I sit at work, or the fact that I tend to fidget by moving my legs throughout the day. All I know is that I can put a pair of dress shoes through the ringer! Within two months of purchase they end up needing a good polish, sometimes some coloring as well. By six to eight months the soles are gone. If they make it to a year, I cannot wear them on rainy days, or my feet will be soaked.

I just don’t know. The only pair that ever seemed to hold up well was a pair of Clark’s that the Wife bought me years ago. They made it from about 2004 to 2006. Granted they needed and received much maintenance, and it was only after I was sliding all over the place in them that I finally got rid of them, but they seemed to make it the longest. Haven’t been able to find a suitable pair since.

So the saga will continue, as I, The Destroyer of Shoes, continue to try and find the pair that can handle my sheer awesomeness. Or I could just stop fidgeting….whatever comes first.

One last note, for some reason, the Wife doesn’t think that this pair of shoes that i own are suitable for the office. I tend to disagree. 😉


On A Lighter Note

I apologize if the last post was a bit heavy, but it was just one of those things that I needed to get off my chest. I promise that this one will be more frivolous and have everybody clicking onto another page quickly.

Halo: The Cole Protocol and Halo: Contact Harvest
I have taken a break from reading about Tao, although I am planning on reading more. I switched gears a bit back to the comforting realm od Science Fiction/Fantasy for a while. The aforementioned books are part of the Halo universe and take place in the years leading upto the action in the first Xbox video game. Both are well written and focus on many of the secondary characters. Read in conjunction with the other Halo novels, they paint a vivid mural of the fictional universe. At the same time I feel it takes a more practical look at the scope of technology 500 years in the future. In terms of technology, it is more Starship Troopers than Star Trek. If you’re a fan of Sci-Fi/military books, this will most likely entertain you. Next is Ghosts of Onyx, a story more focused on the SPARTAN super soldiers.

Last night I had the opportunity to run a few dungeons with a new guy (friend of a friend) and made out like a bandit in terms of Loot. I picked up the following items:

Head Piece: Gaze of the Unknown
Chest Piece: Embrace of Madness
Back: Kurisu’s Indecision

We also assisted our tank, Luinil, in getting his Epic Flying Mount; The Reins of the Bronze Drake
There shall be more of us on this evening, so we are planning on chain running heroics for badges to get better loot. It’s all about the rewards people.

Arcade Fire – Funeral
I recently picked up this album, mostly on the merits of the song Wake Up, which was featured in the trailer for Where the Wild Things Are. I have to say, the music as a whole flows very well, and is suprisingly upbeat. So much so that I found myself smiling and feeling in high spirits while listening to it. I highly recommend this album.

Windows 7 people. Trust me on this one. If you don’t have the hipster cred or the disposable income for a Mac, this truly is the next best thing. Beginning deployment at work this week.

That’s it for now, mayhaps a retelling of tonights dungeon runs tomorrow? 😉


A shot to the Self Esteem

I took the train into Connecticut on Saturday to assist the parents with some projects and returned back on Sunday morning.

One of the projects I had to work on was the rebuild of the parents only computer due to a nasty virus infection. What a fiasco that turned into….

First off, they have close to 15 gigabytes of photos and documents and the machine is close to five years old. That being the case, the USB support is version 1.1 and not the faster 2.0. So it took me a total of four hours to copy all that data off the machine. This should have been a signal of what was to come.

Once that finished around 11pm, I begin the re-install of XP. The only part that actually WORKED in the entire fiasco. At that point it was 12:30am

Thankfully, this copy of XP included compatible network drivers, so I was back on the internet right away and I began doing updates. Unfortunately, the USB support went completely out the window. Nothing got it to recognize my thumb drive. Even going so far as updating the chipset drivers failed. As I had planned to transfer the files back via USB as well as use USB to transfer the Anti-virus and Office install files, this caused a serious crimp in the process. So I began the download process for at least the AV software…I could send them a DVD of Office at a later date. It is now 1:30am.

Download and install Service Pack 3 for XP, download and install Anti-virus, download and install several security updates, reboot and……..nothing. Nothing AT ALL. Not a thing. Monitor goes into power saver mode, even though the OS boots. It’s 3:30am at this point. I almost cried.

At this point, my parents woke up for some reason, and were shocked I was still awake working on this. They told me to quit it and go to bed. I did….extremely pissed off and disheartened. The only thing that allowed me to go to sleep was my exhaustion at 4am. I slept well until I had to wake up at 7:30am as I needed to head back to NYC early. So three hours of sleep is what I got. When I awoke the feelings of letting down the folks and not being able to finish came rushing back…I felt sick to my stomach and was mostly silent when I went out to breakfast with my family.

I’m not usually like this when something goes south like this whole rebuild did. I always let it go, and realize I did all I could. I am betting that it was the exhaustion and aggravation of it all that really got to me, but I seriously felt like an utter and complete failure. The funny thing is though, my parents weren’t even bummed about it….they were appreciative that I tried and are using it as a final excuse to upgrade to a new computer, so it did work out well. But it still bugged the shit out of me.

I no longer feel this way, so that’s why I’m thinking it was just the lack of sleep getting to me. And today has been a very busy and productive day. I know I am not a failure, and I did all I could in a limited amount of time for them. But still, it was a horrible feeling, and it worries me how close to the surface these feelings are.


The Embrace of Pain

(this was from Monday)

The Embrace of Pain is a Yuuzhan Vong device that tests your worthiness through the use of extreme pain. I believe that the person who came up with that fictional idea worked as a cabin designer for American Airlines.
One of the many reasons I dislike flying American is the fact that the coach seats were desgned to hold children, not adults. I am currently squished into a middle seat, with the person in front of me fully reclined into my lap. Both elbows are on padding less arm rests and have been aching since 30 minutes into the flight. My legs are cramped and my ass is asleep.
If you haven’t already guessed, I LOVE flying…