Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Ok, So I'm An Idiot

My best friend from college just emailed me to say thanks for the good luck wishes on the Bar. But then he told me that the Bar exam was the middle of last week! Oh great. This past weekend, I was telling everyone "Oh, my friend is taking the Bar today" or "It sucks that my friend has to take the Bar on a weekend." I really could have sworn it was this past Sunday & Monday.

So I'll amend my last post to "Good luck to everyone who TOOK the Bar!"

Reminds me of my infamous Daylight Savings mixup.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Monday Groove - Good Luck If You're Taking the Bar!

My best friend from college is taking the New York Bar Exam right now. Poor guy. He's had to take the Bar exam twice now because he moved here from California. So he's had to study for the two hardest Bar exams in the country.

In May, he took me out to dinner for my birthday. We had a late dinner--around 9:00PM--because he was coming from a concert that his girlfriend's company was sponsoring.

When we sat down to dinner, my friend told me who they saw. Enrique Iglesias! OMG. I love him, even though his songs are kind of stalkerish (Example: "You can run. You can hide. But you can't escape my love!" Um, ok, STALKER.) Enrique is just so smokin' hot. In fact, he's in my "list" of five guys who comprise my "Top Five Guys I'd Do." The list has been pretty consistent over the past few years, and one of my stalwarts has always been Enrique Iglesias.

I told my friend this, who informed me, "You know, Enrique Iglesias is half-Filipino? His Mom is a Filipino model." He said this with some pride, since he, himself, is Filipino. When I heard this, I replied, "Really??? I didn't know that."

Pause for a moment while I sat there contemplating this new tidbit of information.

Then I said, "You know. I don't think he's in my Top 5 anymore." My friend asked, "Why?" I said, "Because now when I think of Enrique Iglesias, I just think of you," with a big pout.

I jest, of course.

Good luck to everyone taking the Bar!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Confessional #6: I'm Not A Morning Person

I don't know why, but in every job I've ever held, I've never had "Summer hours." Who gets those? And where can I get some?

I've been kind of stressed about work this Summer and feeling a little lost. But it's been so busy that I haven't had as much time as I would like for my some primary stress-relieving activites, like writing in this here old blog (I can see my monthly stats have gone down) and making trips to the gym.

I'm a pretty regular gym-goer, but I've just been so tired after work. As a result, I feel kind of out of shape, and I know I've gained some weight.

So I thought I would try to go to the gym in the mornings. I found out my gym actually opens at 5AM. Fuck, that's early. Usually I'm only up that early in the morning, if I'm heading to the airport or I've gone back in time 4 years to my old job, and I'm finishing up an all nighter.

I've tried this before. I still remember the first time I did it. When I got to the gym, the place is packed. Apparently a lot of people go to the gym at that ungodly hour. They're all "fit" and "healthy" and they purposely
wake up early to go to the gym. And the weird part is, they don't look sad about it. They genuinely look happy to be there. At the time, the only rational explanation I could think of was that all of these people had been in life or death situations and proclaimed to God, "God, if you save me, I'll go to the gym every morning for the rest of my life," and now they're just happy to be alive.

It is cool though to feel accomplished in the morning. You're like, "Holy crap. I can get a lot done in the morning!" That day at the gym, I decided to spend some time on the treadmill. I started walking, and soon got into a light jog. Finally, I kicked it into a run. At first, I was forcing myself because my legs were so uncoordinated. I was sweating, not from exertion, but from the fear that I would trip myself, and fall face first on the treadmill and be shot out into the middle of the gym floor. But before it got to that point, I got into a groove and was chugging along with no problem. 6 mph. Throw a little incline in there. 6.5. No problem. More incline. Bring it on. Finally I was up to 7.5 mph with 3% incline. People at the gym were starting to take notice. A small crowd gathered around me. I heard someone in the crowd whisper "Superman." A woman took out a poster board sign that said "RANDOM GUY ON THE TREADMILL ROCKS MY WORLD!" and throws her sports bra at me. I was a running god that day.

Of course it wasn't that good, but it was surprisingly not bad. Once I got home, I felt like I had accomplished more in two hours than I had in the entire day before.

But that day was three years ago, and I haven't been able to do it again since. Instead, I work from home two or three days a week (although surprisingly, I'm more busy when I work from home than when I'm at the office), shave once a week, and come into the office at 11AM when I do get in, coffee in hand, effectively giving everyone else in the office a symbolic middle finger.)

I guess I just need to take it one step at a time. I'll start slow, like maybe get out of bed at 5 and head on over to the couch. That's a good start to my new over-achieving lifestyle.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Panic! At The Movie Theatre

A couple weeks ago, I went to see Fantastic Four. I went with the same person who I went with last year. I suppose seeing both the premiere and the sequel with the same friend makes this our "thing" now. And after the movie, we went to dinner and toasted "Here's to a great third movie." We both can be quite lame.

Earlier, my friend had caused pandemonium. And I hate to say it, but it was kind of my fault. I had arrived at the theatre early that day and soon got my ticket and then went inside to save seats. I had a fair amount of time to wait because the train gods had smiled upon me on my way down to the theatre. I started to get kind of sleepy, and I knew I wanted coffee. My friend still hadn't shown up, and so i figured she could pick up a cup for me. In my own estimation, this is one of the most valuable parts of having friends - being able to ask them to get stuff for you. With people you've just met, you can't really get away with this, because obviously that's just awkward. Luckily, with "friendship" (or the same could be said for "love" or a "relationship") comes "convenience", except when that "friendship" turns into "bitter hatred and resentment", in which case the fighting and petty arguing can be decidely "inconvenient."

(Boy did I just go off on a tangent.)

Anyway, I texted my friend and asked her if she could get me a coffee. She texted back, "Sure." But then I texted her right back and asked her if she could stop at Starbucks instead because I realized that I had never heard of a movie theatre that sold coffee. Then, I asked if she could just get me one of those bottled frappuccino drinks because that would be quicker. After that, I still wasn't done, because then I texted her again to tell her not to worry about it. I'm an idiot sometimes.

The previews started and right at that moment, my friend ran in with my coffee! She kind of had an exasperated look on her face, and I found out later why.

Apparently, my coffee request was causing utter and absolute confusion at the concession stand. It turned out the theatre did sell coffee. So my friend went up to the cashier, and confidently asked, "Can I get a coffee please?" in a tone that suggested "You're welcome for giving you such an easy order. We can all use a break sometimes."

Well, what transpired next was mass hysteria. First, the teenage girl just stared past my friend, as though contemplating the enormity of the outside world, or trying to remember the next line in that Ciara song. She then looked at my friend and asked for the order again. My friend repeated herself, and then the girl said, "Coffee?!? Do we even serve that?" My friend pointed up and said "It's right there on the menu."

The girl turned around, and my friend saw the coffee machine which looked like it had never been turned on. The girl shouted out to another employee (I guess, the manager) "Somebody wants COFFEE!" as if my friend had just asked for frog's legs. The other employee screams out "Coffee?!? Who wants coffee?!?! I don't know how to make that! I wasn't trained for that!" The girl at the cashier turned to my friend, and said "I'm so sorry, sweetie. We'll get it for you right away." She then rushed off so she and her powerpuff coworker could figure out the coffee maker. My friend said you could see sweat pouring down their foreheads, like they were trying to figure out how to diffuse a bomb. Forget the movie; the drama that night was at the concession stand.

I was laughing so hard when I heard this story. When we passed by the concession stand, I felt like going over and thanking them for my hard-fought coffee. I had to admire my friend's resolve. If I had been there, I think I would have gone back there to show them how to work the machine, and perhaps would still be there, sitting in a circle on the floor with the employees reading a children's book to them.

Or I quite possibly could have woken up in a mental institution, muttering "All I wanted was coffee."

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

The Long Walk Home

Woke up at 6AM today after 4 hours of tossing and turning.

Got yelled at by my client when I was trying to help him and make things easier. Then had to endure countless conference calls and edit fun Visio flowcharts all day.

Had a job interview today that turned out to be tougher than I expected, but I think I did pretty well.

Waited in Grand Central for the S Shuttle when we all started to smell and see smoke. People started screaming at everyone to "Get out!"

Ran out of the station, on to the street and watched in amazement the geyser of smoke shooting up through the air after the explosion. People were weeping, and no one could make a phone call because the networks were all busy. Started the trek uptown and tried in vain to catch crosstown buses at 50th street, then 57th street, and then 66th street back over to the West Side, but ended up walking across the park and all the way home.

Got home at 7:30PM, all sweaty and tired as hell, with sore feet from my fancy work shoes. Pissed off that I didn't make it to the gym today.

At 10PM, I crashed and passed out. Woke up just now to read articles about the explosion and check more work emails. Looked at some reports for work and sent some client emails. Found out that I have to go to San Francisco sometime in the next couple of weeks.

What a day.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Two Years of TCho

So, apparently, I've been writing this thing for two years now. After a year (and recently too), I actually thought about quitting because my original purpose for blogging (bored at home from my broken arm) had gone by the wayside.

But I began to write with renewed vigor and have gained lots more readers. I guess my thoughts of quitting were like a seasonal malaise. You know -- you're sick of your job, nothing much is happening in your love life, you're sick of being tired all the time and there's only so many times you can write about your shopping exploits.

Then I started some series about San Francisco and myself which I still need to finish, got all crazy reminiscent about 2006, then American Idol and Project Runway crazy, then Cheese Store guy and British guy crazy, then new job crazy and then Arizona crazy, and as crazy as it sounds, I'm enjoying it more than ever.

I feel like I should do something though at the two year mark. I do have some ideas on a Word document for possible blog posts. Well, the word "ideas" is a bit strong. They're more like sentences that, at one time, I believed could be considered ideas. I can be quite retarded.

So from my "ideas" list...

  • My apartment: where Tupperware is saved from death.
  • Tense, like those moments right when you know you've just clogged the toilet. Tense indeed.
  • My pet peeve: naturally ugly people. I was in a pissy mood that day.
  • Overrated: listening to music in the shower. Also overrated: my "ideas."
  • It's like that feeling you get when you walk into a men's room, and there's someone in the stall. You know he's cursing you, and you can play this off in one of two ways: 1) you can hurry through, knowing this guy is in a cold sweat clenching back a shit; or 2) you can say "I rush for no one," and take your time. I usually write like I would talk in a conversation. But I'm not sure if I could picture myself using this metaphor, like "You know, it's like that feeling you get when you walk into a men's room...."
  • I really don't like this coworker of mine who keeps ketchup packets in his desk. But today I got French Fries for lunch and forgot to ask for ketchup. I was planning an entire post about annoying people at work, but I realized that was like saying cancer is annoying.
  • I woke up realizing that I left the keys the night before in my apartment lock. When I realized this, I immediately wanted to change the locks, because I was sure a Chinese delivery man killer had gotten past my doorman, removed my keys, gone to an all-night hardware store, made copies, brought my keys BACK (to avoid suspicion), and was planning on coming back later to take all my nice clothes. When I thought of this, I at first thought it was cute, and then troublesome, and ultimately meaningless.
  • I have much more trouble with button fly pants than a 29 year old guy should. Comment away!
  • I'm scared to think of what might happen to me with a few good nights sleep. It could go either way: either I could become astoundingly productive, and this blog could take on the quality of The New Yorker (if the New Yorker were funny, and wrote about frozen yogurt and mold and if I actually had "sources" and "informed opinions"); or, I no longer grapple with bouts of mania and self-aggrandizement, and I drop my blog altogether for more noble pursuits, like running a charity...or making a donation to a charity...or getting more sleep. I still haven't had a decent night of sleep in a while, and so it's safe to assume the writing quality here won't change anytime soon. Unless I stop drinking. So like I said, no time soon.
And if those aren't reasons enough to blogroll me, I don't know what are.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

What It Means To Be Flushing Meadows

Flushing Meadows has a soft spot in my heart for a variety of reasons. First, the obvious: it's the site of the US Open where I can see my favorite tennis players whacking balls on the hot hard courts, hopefully with their shirts off (well, the males.) But secondly, I always think of Homer Simpson dreaming of actual flushing meadows because he drank so much crab juice on their visit to New York that the site of a Flushing Meadows bus brings thoughts of hopping through rolling meadows with flying toilets fluttering all around him.

I had never been to the actual town of Flushing Meadows. On Saturday, I went out there for dinner to meet a friend. I was a bit curious about what to expect as I rode the lovely 7 train past Long Island City, Jackson Heights and other notable Queens enclaves. I know Queens is actually very diverse with lots of different ethnic groups, like the Greeks of Astoria, the Colombians of the Jackson Heights and the Chinese at my destination of the day in Flushing. But when I think of Queens, I think of:

and Italians screaming things like, "Screw you. You wouldn't know a good Manicotti if it came out of your ass."

Queens is also the birthplace of Vincent Chase and his Entourage posse. But when he delivers the last line in his movie, Queens Boulevard with such bravado "I am Queens Boulevard," I just don't think that's really something to brag about.

Having now experienced Flushing Meadows, I now know where the 8 billion Chinese people outside of China and Chinatown live. Coming out of the subway was like stepping out into Beijing. I heard there are a lot of Koreans there and lots of Korean businesses, but I didn't get to see them. I suppose with that knowledge, I myself, one day, can say "I am Flushing Meadows." I just think that line needs some more ooomph to it to make it more eloquent and descriptive:

I am "Kinko's."
I am "Fruits and Vegetables."
I am "7-Eleven."
I am "Blade, Boards & Skates."
I am "Glatt Kosher."
I am "Ray's Pizza."
I am "air traffic control."

I AM Flushing Meadows. Hmmm. That sounds pretty good.

Saturday, July 07, 2007


I've finally tried Pinkberry. Seriously, after a while, so many people were asking me that I wanted to tell them, "I haven't been to Pinkberry yet. I'll go soon. So quit asking me if I've tried Pinkberry yet. And stop singing that stupid infectiously nauseating song."

I had been curious to see what all the hype is about because people seem to be climbing Mount Everest to get their hands on the stuff. For my first visit, I selected the Koreatown branch as the site of my first visit to the Pinkberry world. First off, the place was beyond packed, like a damn nightclub. The line was out the door and not to mention under some retarded layout because the line was supposed to be for two registers, but one register was basically unreachable because it was all the way over to the left directly behind the napkin bar and a mass of tables serving as an impasse.

I get to the head of the line and asked for a sample of the green tea flavor. EWWWWWWW. What the hell is actually in this stuff? It tasted like green sour spirulina. I opted for the plain flavor, which I assumed was supposed to be vanilla. While it wasn't as bad as the green tea, it still just tasted sour as opposed to sour green tea. I was thinking, how can 10 million anorexic women in California who eat this crap be wrong? Girls, you've disappointed me. I don't know what that stuff is, but it sure ain't frozen yogurt.

Well, actually, Pinkberry's soft serve delicacy does taste like yogurt, which I guess is the appeal, besides the healthiness factor. It literally tastes as if you had taken a carton of Dannon and threw it into the freezer. But still, there was something weird about it. And even if it did taste any better to me, it's just yogurt, not some life-changing experience.

And the manager of the joint was a total douchebag, who felt the need to measure EVERY cup to make sure his employees weren't going over the weight limit. But the dumbass wasn't realizing how much this was holding up the line.

It made me think of a kid having his first cigarette, and it's horrible, and he feels like vomiting, but holds it in and puffs it a bit more because all the cool kids are doing it, and he wants to be cool too. Pretty soon, he gets used to it, and even enjoys the little buzz that comes with the habit. Before you know it, he's smoking two packs a week. But since everyone is trying to be cool like you, EVERYONE is going to buy a pack, and so there's a line at every cigarette store, streaming out the door, inching along every half hour. Another half hour passes, and he finally gets his medium bowl with three toppings of his choice, eating it outside because it's packed like sardines inside with other cool people. Pretty soon, the kid has an epiphany and wonders what the hell he is doing there because he doesn't even like frozen yogurt.

Friday, July 06, 2007

TCho Bonds With The Help

I've had a really long couple of weeks at work. Everything that could have gone wrong with my projects the past few days has, culminating in a high pressure meeting to review our service level commitments to our client. So work has really been getting me down lately, and my never ending search for a new job has been more and more urgent. I couldn't wait for the holiday so I could just forget about everything. And on Tuesday, I could also look forward to coming home to a sparkling clean apartment, since my cleaning lady was paying me a visit that day.

Earlier, that day, my cleaning lady called to tell me that she got to my apartment late, like around 3, and probably wouldn't be finished until about 9 in the evening. I knew I wouldn't be home till later anyway, so I told her that was fine. I had plans to go to the gym and get some groceries and drop off my shoes at the shoe repair guy, which i thought would fill up my evening nicely.

When I got home around 9:30, I opened the door to my apartment and scared the bejesus out of my cleaning lady. She was actually still there, and she kind of freaked me out too, because I wasn't expecting her. It was nice to see her though. I had some chocolate cake in the fridge, which I gladly shared with her, because I don't want to get fat. We talked about how much plastic surgery we thought Jessica Simpson has had and other matters of great importance. I helped her out a bit, and had to practically pull her down when she stood up on my air conditioner and leaned her entire upper body through my upper window to wash the outer side of my windows. Never mind that it was raining. I really did not want my apartment to be the site of New York's first cleaning lady-cide.

Anyhow, finally, she was done, with some help from me. She gave me my usual homework assignments and then off she went.

Then I spent the next hour moving back all the stuff that she so carefully rearranged, not that I wasn't appreciative.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Took An Unexpected Break

Sorry again for the blogging silence. I've had a ton of shit going on at work, and I'm exhausted. I should be able to get back to blogging this week. Check back soon!