Thursday, May 31, 2007

This Ain't Mexico

In terms of eating options around the Grand Canyon, your choices are pretty limited. Inside the Park, you can eat at the El Tovar Lodge, but you have to be in the mood for an over-priced sit down meal to enjoy it. There are also two cafeteries in the Park at Maswik and Yavapai Lodges where you can enjoy institutionalized classics like dry Salisbury Steak, overcooked Spaghetti and Tomato Sauce, watery Chicken Pot Pies, and the Mystery Meat special of the day. You're really better off picking up something in Tusayan or Williams, AZ and bringing it with you into the park.

After my day of hiking the Canyon, I was famished. I stopped by Wendy's in Tusayan. For some reason, Wendy's is always exotic to me. Maybe because the first time I went to Wendy's was when I was in my 20s. We had one or two growing up in Virginia, but they were located in the most inconvenient places, not close to any easy turns. And right now I don't live near any here in New York. This one in Tusayan was also extra exotic because it was all run by Native Americans, not that this Wendy's was in a teepee or anything.

At any rate, I got my dinner, and sat down to eat. A couple came soon after and sat at a table near me. The wife asked the husband what he wanted:

Wife: So what do you want?

Husband (not really paying attention): Oh. I guess, Nachos.

Wife: Nachos????? They don't have Nachos here. Hmmpf.

I wish I could have captured the wife's LOOK of indignation and scoff. It was a look that simultaneously made her husband feel like he was 5, and demonstrated her clear expertise in Wendy's menu.

To the husband's credit, I do think Wendy's had a Mexican burger at some point. Of course that might mean it's just a regular burger made by a Mexican.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Don't Fall In!

The Grand Canyon is pretty amazing. Everything you've heard is true. Seeing it for the first time is truly an experience you'll never forget. No matter how you prepare yourself, it's more vast and more massive than you could possibly imagine. I saw a sign that said "it's the canyon that all other canyons want to be." Well, I didn't know canyons could be so superficial. But it doesn't have to worry. The Grand Canyon is so incredible; it almost looks unreal, like a painting almost.

I actually decided not to do the Skywalk. It was getting really bad reviews for the silly $75 packages you had to buy to walk on it, the fact that the Indians won't let you take pictures, and the relative remoteness and lack of infrastructure yet to be completed around the Skywalk.
So I stuck with the South Rim.

My day started by stopping by the National Geographic Visitor's Center in Tusayan, about 20 miles south of the South Rim. I got in the mood by buying some souvenirs including John Wesley Powell's The Exploration of the Colorado And Its Canyons, which goes against the usual trashy novels that I read. But I felt very inspired by the Canyon to be this country's next great explorer, even though I actually hadn't seen it yet because I was too busy buying souvenirs and watching the IMAX movie. I began to be afraid that I'd be the first person to go to the Canyon without actually seeing it.

Soon enough, I left the visitor's center and headed towards the Canyon. It was surprisingly pretty cold that day; in the low 60s or so, and it was raining off and on. I cursed myself for not buying that National Geographic Grand Canyon vest that I saw at the Visitor's Center.

I was actually starting to think that maybe the Canyon was overrated, and was starting to doubt my wisdom in driving all this way. But that changed upon my first glimpse when I got out of the car. If it had been a reality series, this segment would have sounded something like:
Host: "And here's the Canyon!"

Me: "Holy [bleep]. Are you [bleeep] kidding me?"

Host: "And it's over a mile deep!"

Me: "Get the [bleep] out of here. This is [bleeeep] awesome!"

To explore, I decided to hike down South Kaibab Trail because there's a plateau at about the middle of the trail that gives a nice panoramic view. The hike down is fine, a bit steep and scary in some parts, but nothing too bad. I passed by some interesting folks coming back up, including a family whose Dad was clearly hell-bent on providing the best damn holiday for his family. The rest of the family looked tired and not nearly as enthusiastic as their fearless leader. I also saw some absolute idiots hiking in Birkenstocks and not carrying a single bottle of water. The hike back up is HARD. OMG. It feels like an endless Stairmaster. There is no way you could go to the bottom and back up to the top in the same day.

I made it to the plateau in about 45 min, and of course the view was amazing, humbling, vast, and any other superlative you can think of. Seriously, the Canyon is no joke. I don't think there's any adjective in the English language that would exaggerate the immensity of it.

So of course I had to take a picture. I saw a couple resting and asked the guy, who was this bumbling German guy, to take my picture. I decided on a place and adjusted the camera settings and gave him my camera. He took a picture and offered to take another one. That's when the lens closed and retreated back in. Hmmmm. I took the camera and pressed the "On" button. Nothing. I realized the battery had RAN OUT!

So here's the one picture I took. I was not having a good hair day:

Monday, May 28, 2007

A Swift Kick To The Groin

Well this is the feeling I was left with after my day at Sedona.

On my first day in Arizona, I drove through Sedona on my way to Flagstaff. I wasn't sure what I was going to do there, but I at least wanted to see the famous Red Rocks. Also, supposedly Sedona is one of the world's metaphysical centers, with lots of powerful vortexes and holy energized spots. I wasn't sure what kind of energy I was supposed to feel, but I'm not the type to believe in that type of stuff anyway.

The Red Rocks of Sedona are pretty spectacular. It was so different than anything I had ever seen before. But after a while, the scenery gets to be kind of "ok, how many red rocks can I look at before being bored out of my mind?" You really have to do something like hike around or take a jeep tour. In my case, I opted for an afternoon of mountain biking. I'll admit, I was a bit hesitant because I hadn't been on a bike in a few years and had only gone serious mountain biking once before. But I just went for it and had a good and very sweaty time.

So after renting a bike and deciding which route I should take with the shop owner, I headed out with my 30 year old bad self, hitting the trails as if I had a lot of anger to let out, which I didn't really.

I was on the "Broken Arrow Trail" which was described to me as an intermediate trail. In retrospect, I should have picked an easier trail, but this one was the closest to the shop, and I didn't want to have to commute that far.

I was having a pretty good time. The first part kicked my ass because it was pretty much a series of uphills the entire time. But soon it leveled out and was a mix of short uphills and downhills. I was taking jumps, but pretty slowly, so picture a much more lame image in your head than it sounds.

On one part of the trail was a pretty steep and long downhill section. I had been biking for a while and was gaining my confidence. I started my descent and began to pick up speed, much more quickly than I really wanted to. But I didn't want to stop. I bent my knees and elbows, focused on my path, and got off my seat a bit to brace myself.

I had made a mistake and didn't quite realize the amount of huge rocks down the hill. They might as well have been boulders, and I realized I'd have to stop. I press the breaks hard, and BAM! I was in the air for a split second, but it might as well have been 10 minutes. I stopped right in front of a rock and it came up fast. While I was in the air, my legs kind of compressed from the weight of my body, and that's about the exact time I land. Boom! Let's just say that at the moment, the "junk" in my groin area were not ideally positioned for the landing.

I hit my groin HARD! I landed right against the center bar of my bike connecting my seat to the handle bars. Oh my fucking god. I thought I was going to black out. My bike tumbled and I was rolling on the ground. Holy crap. Was I in pain!

After a few minutes, I finally got back on my bike and rode some more and walked a lot more. I was pretty parched too, similar to how I felt a couple years ago in this post. Biking in that altitude was really a lot to handle.

The end result of all this? Scrapes, bloody legs and huge ass bruise on my inner left thigh. But at least I didn't do any more serious damage.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Woke Up In A Bad Mood

I'm headed back to NY now. I've had a pretty good time in Scottsdale and the rest of Arizona, which I'll write about soon. But right now, I'm in a pissy mood, because I had another totally pathetic, passive-aggressive talk with that guy again. At least these days, it doesn't make me sad anymore. I just get pissed off for wasting my time.

Anyhow, I'll be back in NY soon and catching up on my blogroll and updating my own blog here. I've enjoyed Arizona, but I'm glad to be on my way home.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

I Ran Through The Desert On A Horse With No Name

I'm in Arizona right now! Haven't had a chance to blog yet. But i'll try soon! Check back in a few days to hear more about how TCho injured his groin mountain biking in the Red Rocks of Sedona, trekked half-way down to the Grand Canyon and found out his camera had a dead battery, and had an adventure at the Wendy's owned by Indians. And I've only been here for two days!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

American Idol/Top 4: Sorry No Idol Update

I just got my new driver's license, and I'm way too upset about my new picture to write an American Idol update for last week's Barry Gibb night. I look so fat in my picture.

Nah, in truth, everyone was mediocre at best, and it wasn't worth it to write a review. Worst had to have been Barry Gibb himself. The poor guy wheezed his way through the same song that Jordin sang the night before. I really wish it had been disco night instead of Barry Gibb night. I think most of the Bee Gees's songs are one-shot deals, and really can only be sung once, at least sung well.

Anyway, I voted for Melinda. Hope tonight is better.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Birthday Post #04: Hey, Did You Know It's My Birthday? Because It Is.

So did I mention that it's my birthday? I just hope everyone knew it was coming up, because I don't remember if I mentioned it here or not. Just making sure.

Surprisingly, I do have a bit of a birthday buzz, when I haven't cared in any other previous year that I remember. Maybe because I was very flattered by all the birthday comments on my blog. To increase my buzz, I learned from the Farmer's Almanac that today is a red-letter day. Check out the birthday lore on the link. I'm much too modest to post it here.

And courtesy of the The History Channel, here are a few events that took place on the day of my birthday.

In 1804, one year after the United States doubled its territory with the Louisiana Purchase, the Lewis and Clark expedition left St. Louis, Missouri, on a mission to explore the Northwest from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean. The Indians must still be kicking themselves today.

In 1904, the Third Olympiad of the modern era, and the first Olympic Games to be held in the United States, opened in St. Louis, Missouri. When I was little, I wanted to win an Olympic Gold medal...and an Oscar...and a Nobel Prize...and a Grammy.

In 1948, Jewish Agency Chairman David Ben-Gurion proclaimed the State of Israel, establishing the first Jewish state in 2,000 years. I always think of Charlton Heston, when I hear this guy's name.

In 1960, Mickey Thompson, a.k.a. "Mr. Speed," broke Bernd Rosemeyer's 22-year-old record for the standing mile and standing kilometer. Hmmm, when I heard "Mr. Speed", I thought of this instead of driving. Shows where my mind is at.

In 1948, a brutal murder began an unusual investigation. OOOOOOOK.

In 1991, Seinfeld aired its final premiere episode on this day in 1998. I loved this show when it was on, but why does the humor seem so dated now?

In 1861, William Fetterman, who later led 80 of his soldiers to their deaths at the hands of the Sioux, joined the Union Army. A story for every festive occasion.

In 1973, Skylab, America's first space station, was successfully launched into an orbit around the earth. And then it came crashing down five years later. Ouch.

In 1944, filmmaker George Lucas was born on this day in 1944 in Modesto, California. Good job George on the first three. Eh on the last three.
Back tomorrow with more silly observations from TCho's World.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Birthday Post #03: A Present for Moi? You Shouldn't Have

One day and counting. Contact me here for details on where presents can be sent.


A Star

What moron thought of this as a gift? This has got to be the cheesiest gift ever created. I'm not trying to be an asshole; I get how it's sweet and sentimental and eternal and all that, but really - you name a star after a loved one and that star is billions of light years away and probably not even perceptible 90% of the year and will never, ever come into play in any aspect of life ever again. I don't even understand how they're even official. I seriously doubt an astronomer would ever say "I'm seeing some real activity from Terence Cho," or "Take a look at that star over by Terence Cho."

Mrs. Fields Cookie Of The Month

I suppose it's good that I have a cookie habit as opposed to a crack habit. But the last thing I need is to have cookies tempting me everytime I need a snack.

Any Sort Of Stuffed Animal

Not that I have any friends who still think they're 8, but I have never been into any sort of plush doll.


A Tamagoyaki Pan

I am obsessed with Japanese breakfasts. I just always feel so serene and calm while eating them. A typical Japanese breakfast includes steamed rice, Miso Soup, grilled fish, some Japanese pickled vegetables like pickled radish or pickled cucumber (which are different than American pickles which are cucumbers), Umeboshi, and a Tamagoyaki, which is that egg omelette that you often get with sushi plates.

To make the Tamagoyaki, you need a special rectangular pan. Well I've been making my own in a regular pan, but you don't get those straight quadrilateral lines that I so crave. So this pan would be perfect.

A Mango Cutter

Surprise, surprise, another food related item. Fruit is always such a pain to eat. All the peeling, chopping, skinning, pitting, de-seeding is sometimes just too much of a bother and by the time I'm done, I'm no longer in the mood to eat the damn piece of fruit anymore. Mangoes are probably the fruit that I hate peeling the most. I don't know why so many chefs advocate the "hedgehog" method where you cut the two halves and then score the flesh and turn the skin inside-out. You waste so much mango that way.

That's why I am very hopeful that this Mango Cutter will save me all the aggravation. I had seen it before, but wasn't really sure it worked that well. Then I saw Bobby Flay use it on his show, and my hopes were renewed.

A New iPod

I'm sure I don't need to explain to any of my readers how ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY an iPod is to my life. In fact, if we had a nuclear holocaust, and I could only bring one item, it would be my iPod. But OMG, last Friday, in typical Terence airheadness, I lost my iPod. I was at J. Crew, looking at shirts, and put down my iPod while holding up some shirts in the air. Then in a totally ditzy move, I just walked away from my iPod leaving it there for someone else's enjoyment.

I think I might want a Nano, particularly the Product(RED) one because I do like that color and I can help some kids too, and also because I think the next version of the full iPod will be coming out in a few months.

My Own Gap Ad

I love Gap ads. I wish I could live in one. Everyone looks so happy and they all have perfect teeth. Some of my favorites (see the hyperlinks to YouTube videos) include "Love Train", with that girl who kind of does a back flip at the end. Juliette Lewis with Daft Punk is really cute too, dancing with the robots. I also love the ad with all the models biking to "September" by Earth, Wind & Fire and the colorful scarves (couldn't find a YouTube link). Patrick Wilson, Will Kemp, Raoul Bova all provide very nice eye candy. And I love the Mary J. Blige ad because she sings one of my most favorite songs ever. But my all time favorites are the spots from the "Give A Little Bit" ad series. I always get a little misty-eyed at those ads because I had some stuff going on at the time those aired, and the singing is just so wistful.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Birthday Post #02: My Early Birthday Present

I bought myself an early birthday present the other day. I saw this thing on TV and just HAD to have it:This is the Emma Snail Orange Peeler. It is so cute, and I am just squealing with excitement over it. I try to eat a lot of fruit to be healthy and all that. And I love oranges. But peeling them with my own hands is so beneath my dignity. Now with this handy gadget, I can peel oranges without messing up my finger nails or squirting juice all over my shirt. A tiny plastic blade cuts through the rind without puncturing the flesh. This saves so much frustration. I wish I could have thought of something like this.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Birthday Post #01: A Brief History Of Me

In four days, we come across the most insignificant day of the year: my birthday. I gave up long ago making a big deal out of it, because it's usually very inconsequential to me. Also, many people don't realize how bad it is to have a birthday in May, schedule-wise. Having a birthday in November or December is bad for obvious holiday-related reasons. But the main culprits in May are graduations and weddings. Sometimes my birthday falls also on Mother's Day, like it did last year. Given how little patience I have for difficult scheduling, I just don't even bother to make plans.

However, having a birthday and a blog does give me a prize opportunity to be unapologetically self-centered and write about myself for a change, since we all know how leery I am about that (haha). So I think I'll write a series of birthday-related posts this week and we'll see how many of my readers are ready to put a gag on me at the end.

I was born on May 14, 1977 in Cheverly, MD, a town which I have no recollection of, and have been meaning to visit, so I could tell people someday how I rose up out of the ghetto, with my black name and all. I was the first born in my family and blissfully enjoyed life as an only child for two years, until my first brother was born.
When I first started to speak, I was about three years old, at which point my first memory is me sitting in a La-Z-Boy chair, watching The Dukes of Hazzard in our apartment in New Jersey. I can only imagine that at that moment I was a) silently taking in everything around me, plotting my master plan to dominate the family structure; b) humming quietly because I was an infant genius utterly bored with my current company; c) or sitting, strapped to the chair, so I wouldn't fall down the stairs again.

I soon mastered English, once I realized that my mouth served a purpose other than chew and drool. I caught on to English so well that today I even have a blog. Woo-hoo.

I suppose I was a smart kid, pretty early. But due to the Asian parental academic pressure instilled in me since pre-school, I was pretty socially inept, which still holds true today.

After pre-school, we moved to Virginia and I was ready to take on the world. I entered Kindergarten at a public school near a Kentucky Fried Chicken in Waynesboro, VA. I breezed through Kindergarten with the best show-and-tells and an unhealthy obsession with The A-Team (you can see my tv habits were developed early). After Kindergarten, we moved to Charlottesville, where I would live for the next 12 years. In Grade 1, I began to learn about classroom politics and in my rebellious and stubborn nature, refused to take part.

In Grade 2, I got a tonsillectomy and went through a lot of complications that required me to go back to the hospital after I threw up blood (sorry if I grossed you out). In Grade 2, I also cried in the middle of class because Anna (I forget her last name) announced to the entire class that she had a crush on me.

I think in Grade 3, I began to fear my own genius. I was kind of a rebellious third grader, maybe because Ms. Locke was this evil bitch and I did not get along with her. I do remember that we did have a semi-sweet bonding session because for some reason when I was little, I really liked going to the dentist, and Ms. Locke used to be a dental assistant.

Grades 4-8 were pretty non-descript, defined really by my choices in wardrobe and as the sole Asian kid in my entire grade. I switched schools again in 4th grade when we moved out to this tiny town just outside of Charlottesville, that basically consisted of a post office. I graduated 5th grade as the front runner for the 5th grader of the year award, but lost to some other guy. It's a loss from which I still haven't recovered.

Things picked up in Middle School. I was at a new school and the New Kids On the Block were gods. I picked up the saxophone and was starting to learn of young teenage love. I had a "girlfriend" in Grade 7, if you could call it that. I think our high point was going to the movies together and then a month later, she unceremoniously dumped me. By the end of middle school, I had a great group of friends, including my best friend, Ryan Zackrisson, who I've lost touch with and no Google search has ever been able to come up with anything on him. I also had a crush on my 6th grade Social Studies teacher, Mr. Maher (I started gay at a young age, I guess.) I still remember on our 8th grade class trip, when he showed us his boxers because he was so proud of them, but now looking back I probably should have told our principal that our teacher was sexually harrassing us.

I left J.T. Henley Middle School as the Best Dressed Guy (voted by my classmates) and was forcibly switched to a private, quasi-Episcopalian (who are the wimpy Catholics) and rather snooty school. To this day, I feel bad about not keeping in touch with my public school friends, especially the aforementioned Ryan, and my Cub Scout buddy Cam Dirickson, who I had a brief reunion with at Kaplan SAT class. But I made some new friends including her (who really needs to update her blog one of these days) and him and him.

I got pretty good grades. Then I encountered Biology and stopped doing well in school. I became our school's resident trivia expert as captain of the Academic Team, which was fun in high school, but in college extremely dorky. I also got glasses and focused a little too much on my studies. I played on our high school tennis team as well as a few local tournaments (and one in Florida). I even won a few trophies, but more for Academic Team, than tennis. For some reason, I got really shy in high school, which is a trait that is stuck with me today.

I give college mixed reviews. I ended up having a single my Freshman year, because the person assigned to my dorm ended up going somewhere else. I joined Model UN, and am still pretty proud of my gavels (no, that's not a phallic metaphor). I was a little lost in college, both personally (I'm much too cynical to say "spiritually") and geographically. Penn was still in the midst of taking over West Philly, but the neighborhood was still definitely "not so good" with "not so good" people wandering around.

Graduation came and went. After that, I moved to New York where I lived in an assortment of apartments. I took a job at a law firm, and ended up staying there for six years. While I don't work there anymore, my career, I think, has been what you might call "stagnant." I also came out at age 26 and haven't looked back since.

That brings us to my life post-coming out, becoming an amateur gourmet, dating some cool guys, dating some really dumpy guys, traveling a bit, developing an unhealthy obsession with Canadian Maple Leaf Cookies and frequent flier miles, watching every episode of every show that J.J. Abrams ever made (Felicity, Alias, Lost, Six Degrees), and then in July 2005, while wallowing in self-pity from a broken arm, starting up a blog called TCho's World, which depressingly enough, may prove to be my crowning achievement. Unless, you count the time when I hit a ball with my racquet frame and the ball--I can't stress this enough--MIRACULOUSLY landed inside an empty tennis ball can, as if the hand of God had dropped it in there himself. Who I am kidding? Of course that's my piece de resistance. That will never happen again in the history of time.

In summation, 29 years, 361 days, no boyfriend, very little responsibility, an addiction to expensive shoes and really salty pickles, contact lenses, a somewhat odd collection of friends (one of whom still holds a grudge against Brad Pitt for leaving Jennifer) and an impressive scar that allows me to brag to all my friends about my bionic arm. I can see it now. 30 will be the best age for me since 29.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Maybe I'll Meet A Hobbit

The actual trip is a long ways away, but I just bought a ticket for New Zealand! I took advantage of this amazing deal on United due to a slip-up by a soon-to-be ex-employee of United. I'm very excited. I've spent a lot of time in Australia, which I've been meaning to write about at some point, but never been to New Zealand. I planned my trip for February 2008, so I'll be in NZ for gay pride. I'm flying into Auckland and have done a bunch of research, and am a little overwhelmed already. There's so much to do!

Here's to kiwis!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

American Top 6 (Again): I Wanna Rock

Now I know my American Idol updates are insufferably late, but since I started tackling the Idol beast, I have to see it to the end. And now I see my updates as friendly reminders where we left off the previous week and where the Idols currently stand. So there. I do have a method behind my madness, in case you were at all that interested, and I'm sure you weren't.

All right, let's get this over with.

The Idols have returned from heaven (since they were dressed in those heavenly white suits during the Idol Gives Back concert) and are back to business. It was Jon Bon Jovi week, which I was looking forward to because I thought his music would prove to be a challenge for all the contestants, and I thought Bon Jovi could give some pretty good advice. If there's anyone who knows how to write a song, it's Bon Jovi. He's like a damn hit machine, just churning hits out and being ridiculously successful at it. It's too bad his performance the next day turned out to be the dullest mentor performance all season.

Phil started first, and made the mistake of telling us that he's been dreaming of singing "Blaze of Glory" since he 12 years old or whenever he said. Watching him sing in front of Bon Jovi and then later onstage, he looked like an amateur and I could see the 12 year old in him singing in front of his mirror with a hair brush. Well actually a stapler probably since he has no hair.

Jordin came out next, and I loved her new look because every other week she's so sickenly saccharine and sweet, that it makes me want to puke. Unfortunately, Jordin couldn't pull off "Livin' On A Prayer" which is my favorite Bon Jovi song (besides "Born To Be My Baby," which unfortunately, no one sang). The low notes were too low for her, and she got more manic as the song went on that I thought she was going to explode.

Well, after Jordin, anyone could have come out and sounded like a winner. Luckily, Lakisha didn't need that boost. She sang a song that I didn't know, which was probably to her advantage, since Lakisha is clearly not a rocker chick, and any attempt at Bon Jovi's more well known songs would have brought comparisons to the original artist himself. Lakisha was kind of cocky and sassy last week, and I'm not sure why, since she hadn't really been that good the previous weeks. She was also testing fashion's limits by wearing a top with a red band to accentuate the part of her figure, we all do not want to see more of. Anyway, she sang great, and sounded sooooo much better than previous weeks. She sounded bluesy and soulful in all the good ways.

Blake raised the bar even higher after Lakisha with his nerdy and serious music arrangement prowess. Bon Jovi gave us a preview by essentially proclaiming "You Give Love A Bad Name" as some sort of Holy Grail that you just don't touch and kind of preparing us to recoil in horror at Blake's treatment of it. But Blake pulled it off with all of his record-scratching, soda can opening and other sound effects going strong like a one-man techno band, although not as gay as that sounds. I was really impressed. He doesn't have the greatest voice, but in terms of originality, he takes the prize.

Chris Richardson and Melinda were kind of a let-down after two really great performances. Tinny and nasaly as usual, I don't think Chris had the vocal chops to give the growls and rocker attitude suited for rock. He just sounded wimpy. Melinda, while sounding miles better than Chris, was kind of bleh too. The three stoodges' latest thing has been comparing Melinda to Tina Turner, which I think is kind of a stretch. She did inject a little bit of tude, but Tina Turner? Not really.

My votes:

Best Performance: Blake. Like Simon said, his was a love/hate performance. I loved it. Oh and the drum solo was awesome.

Worst Performance: Jordin. What a mess.

Most Improved: Lakisha. While she sounded great, I recommend that she not try any more deep knee bends in tight jeans.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Why Do The Corporate Gods Always Know When You're Going On A Vacation?

Wow, it's May 7, and I haven't posted yet?!? I'm such a bad blogger. Truth be told, I've been a little down lately, and haven't been in the mood to even look at my computer.

Last Friday, I drove down to Harrisburg, PA for a wedding for a friend from college who had tracked me down after losing touch 3 or 4 years ago. I was looking forward to it. I hadn't seen any of those people in over four years. Plus this was an Indian wedding which immediately brings to mind Bend It Like Beckham and my inner Bollywood.

On Friday, I had a fair amount to do for work and pack and get all my things together. I got up around 6AM, which is super-early for me and sat down at my computer. Six hours later, I still had yet to shower. I was that busy. But finally I got up from desk chair and started grabbing underwear, socks, shirts and everything else I needed for my trip. Packing didn't take long, and the constant flood of work emails and phone calls seemed to have stop.

The plan was to leave NYC around 3PM, so I could make a pre-wedding dinner at 7:30 that night. I was pretty much on schedule. I left my apartment at 2:30 to walk up to the rental place to get my car. I got my car and was set to drive back to my apartment to pick up my bags. This all proceeded fine and pretty soon, I was on my way out, escaping New York.

Then the deluge came.

I hadn't really told any of my clients that I was leaving the office a little early, well, in my case, my home office. But somehow they just seemed to know. I had just gotten out of the Lincoln tunnel and my clients were all calling me with "emergencies":

"Terence, this has to be done tonight."
"How soon can you get this done? I need it by tomorrow"
"We have people coming in over the weekend to work on this. Will this be done by then"
Yeah, yeah. I get it. Word somehow spread that I was leaving NYC, and you think I'm never coming back. Seriously, why does this always happen? Literally, from Monday - Thursday, I was twiddling my thumbs and wondering how I was going to bill my hours. Then on Friday, all my clients seemed to have this telepathic knowledge that I was trying to leave a tad early and were determined to fit in all their work right before my trip. Why oh why?

I ended up working the whole weekend, which I guess was ok, since the wedding was kind of boring. I'll write more about that later. In the meantime, I'll stop whining now, and get back to work.