Archive for August, 2006

Thursday night had me back at the Sacramento airport where I was meeting up with my friend, Steve, for the ride to Pismo Beach (where were attending a wedding on Friday).

The plan was to stay in Sacramento on Thursday, then drive to Pismo Beach Friday morning, with hopefully a quick stop in San Francisco time permitted.

Well, Steve informed me when we looked at the map that San Fran was going to be out of the question, as Pismo Beach was further than expected.

No worries, really.  I wanted to see San Fran, but I had been having such a good time, one little change in plans wasn't going to ruin it.

We picked up the rental car without incident (we were originally going to get a convertable, but the price difference between a convertable and a non-convertable for three days was about 300 bucks.  I figured I didn't need a convertable) and headed for the hotel, which was about 40 minutes away, but we found it with no problems.   Steve had brought along a Verizon mobile card for the trip.  I was surfing the net as we were driving.  Pretty damn cool.

Well, we arrive at the hotel and check in.  The guy says, "that's one room, king, right?"

"What?" I ask.  "Wait, it's a king size bed?  Two of them, right?"

The guy laughed.  "No, one king."

"No.  No.  No.  You have two doubles?"

"Sorry, we're all booked up."

I looked at Steve.  He made all the arrangements.  "I was in a hurry.  Sorry."

The Marriott employee said, "I can give you extra pillows, if you want."

"Yeah," I said, "I'm going to need them."

The guy gave me about four pillows, which I used to put a wall in the middle of the bed.  I ended up sleeping in the bathroom, anyway, because Steve snored so damn loud.

The next morning, Friday, we headed for the wedding.  We got on the road about 11:00, and got to our hotel in Pismo Beach at 5:00.  We quickly changed into our suits and drove to the ceremony.  More on that later, but here's some pics of the drive.

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For the most part, we saw mountains.  We didn't see water until right before we rolled into Pismo, but the drive was amazing and one of the reasons why I headed out to California in the first place.

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I left San Diego on Tuesday and flew up to Sacramento, where I was met at the airport by my buddy, Fred.

Fred runs the site I write reviews for, HorrorTalk, and I’ve known him (along with his daughter, Krystal) for about five years.  He’s come down my way a few times for the yearly HorrorFind convention and has been to my house a couple years back for a bbq, but I’ve never had the opportunity to check out his digs.

But, like my buddy Mykl, when I told Fred I was coming out, he graciously offered me a place to stay, and I couldn’t refuse.

Like in San Diego, I had a blast hanging out with Fred and Krystal.  Granted, I spent a lot more time with Fred than Krystal and her fiance, Daniel, but it was good times regardless.  And Krystal has a completely different sleep schedule than mine.  Fred jokes that she’s a vampire, and I now believe him.  I should have checked for reflection in the mirror.  Part of me is a bit jealous, though, as I am a night person, but my job does not allow me to stay up all night like it used too.

Anyways, once again, it’s all about the people you are with and not so much where you are at that determines the time you have.

No sunburn Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday, as I spent most of the time indoors giving my skin a break and talking shit with my friends.

Some pics from Sacramento…

This first one is a pic outside of Carvers, a hoitytoity restaurant Fred took me to.  I had some ribs that literally fell of the bone.  You could eat them with a fork.

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The next day we had lunch at Fats.  An awesome Chinese joint just across the street from Carvers.  I just dug that entrance.

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And the last two are from the night I was leaving.  The first is Krystal and I, and the second is Fred and I right before I met my buddy, Steve, at the airport where we going to drive from Sacramento to Pismo Beach.  That tale comes later.

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A big thanks goes out to Fred and Krystal for putting up with me for three days.

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A couple pics of my buddy's patio view.

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I'm out in beautiful, sunny San Diego and loving every minute of it.

I had planned on doing a daily update like Ace did when he hit Hawaii, but it's been hit or miss with the internets.  But that's a-okay because of the time I've been having, and I've really not had time to write, anyway.

The plane trip Friday was rather uneventful (except when I was in Detroit on my layover and almost intentionally tried to board the plane heading for Dallas because oh-my-God the women getting on that plane were HOT.  I swear, it must have been a Hooters convention going on.  But the girl who sat two rows up for me was wearing a pink thong with low riding pants, and she kept having to get up for the people sitting next to her and that made up for me missing the flight to Texas).

My boy, Mykl, picked me up at the airport and we headed straight to his house were we (and by we I mean him, his wife Nicole and his roommate Eric) spent the evening on the patio drinking beers and catching up.  His patio overlooks some mountains and from that first night I knew I was going to have a good time.

Saturday I got to meet his daughter for the first time (which still amazes me that my buddy is a hardcore family man, now) and spent some more time on the patio bs'ing (as I proceeded to get sunburned), then headed out to Seaport Village, a little tourist thingy on the water.  Not being a big spender on the souvenirs, I just picked up a shirt and a coffee mug.  While we were there, we went to the top of the Hyatt, where there was a bar and an amazing view of San Diego.  Afterwards, we went to Claim Jumper where we met up with Nicole's sister, brother-inlaw and kid and had a pretty good meal.  For those who have never been, Claim Jumper is pretty much Cracker Barrell.  Good food, a lot of it, at a reasonable price.

Afterwards, Gary (Nicole's brother-inlaw) invited us out for some poker (which I wasted no time losing my $20 buy-in) and to the local bar (where I wasted no time getting sloshed).

Sunday was hitting the pool and a bbq (where I promptly got more sunburned).

Today, while Mykl and Nicole were at work, Eric and I hit the mall (because he had some errands) and then to el barrio for a local Mexican food dive that was awesome.  Eric kept asking me what I wanted to see and where I wanted to go, but I'm not a touristy type person.  I don't need to see the San Diego Zoo because I'm not an animal person and the SD aquarium doesn't interest me either.  I just want to hang out and have a good time.  Which, man, I have been. 

Anyway, I fly out tomorrow to Sacramento to see my buddy Fred and his daughter Krystal, and I can't wait to just hang out up there, too.

So far, the trip has been amazing.  Mykl, Nicole and Eric have went out of their way to make sure I'm comfortable and having a good time, and one of the best things is, even though I haven't seen Mykl in over five years, we picked up right where we left off.  There was none of that stupid ass awkwardness.  But, you know, with good friends, there never is.

Seaport Village

Nicole, Mykl and myself in the back.  Isabel, who is up front, obviously has more important things to look at.

Kites

Some kites.

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I take the metro in to work.  I only require only two things when on the metro:  A book (be it the reading kind or the writing kind) and an mp3 player.

The book keeps me occupied for a half hour, and the mp3 player (which I should just go old school and call it a walkman) does two things.  It blocks out the metro noise and is an awesome buffer between me and Tom Tourist.  Because Tom Tourist seems to think people want to hear where he's from and what a great city we have here.  Not my city, Tom.  But thanks for sharing.

But, sometimes, the mp3 player offers a third thing.  Passive-agressive irritation.

Now, I'm not the type to jack the thing up so loud, my metro neighbor can hear it.  No sir, I'm not that guy.  I set it at a reasonable level, just loud enough to drown out the particular noise, and no higher.  And, in all honesty, that's enough for me because I can't read when the music is too loud.  I also have two types of music stored on the player: reading and writing music.  Reading music usually consists of someone like Nouvelle Vague, Death Cab for Cutie or various soundtrack scores.  Writing music usually consists of Rage Against the Machine, Disturbed or trance.  You get it.

The other day I got on the metro and I was listening to Cyndi Lauper's newest.  Shut up.  It's pretty damn good.  Plus it has two Sarah McLaclan tracks and Sarah is my girlfriend.

Anyway, I take my seat and pop open my book.  A lady gets on and sits behind me (putting her 3 bags on the seat next to her so nobody will sit there, which automatically grates my nerves.  Of course I want a seat to myself, but I'm not ignorant about it).  She then makes a phone call and starts talking in her outside voice.  

Now, these are the times when you must make a decision.  Do you say something and cause a scene, or do you handle it another way?  I knew immediately that if, God forbid, I ask her to pipe down, there would be attitude, thus a scene.  Contrary to what people think, I'm not a fan of making a scene.  Okay, maybe I am for my friends' benefit, but not so much on my own.  

So I handled it another way.  

I pulled out my player, selected Disturb's catalogue (and, really, the whole catalogue is good) and turned to 11.  Why 11?  Shame on you for asking.

I didn't get through one song before she turned around to look at me (which I pretended not to notice), grabbed her bags in a huff and made a big show as she moved to another seat.

When she sat down at her new seat, she gave me another look.  This time I was looking at her.  And, so she knew that I knew why she moved, I smiled.

I was a little upset that she didn't return my friendly smile with one of her own.  Instead I got a scowl.  For shame.

Passive-agressive, yes.  But I'd like to think me smiling takes a little of the passive out of the passive-agressive.

Afterwards, I went back to my girlfriend, Sarah, and my book.

Sometimes it's good to start the day on a high note. 

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