Tuesday, June 30, 2009

GUEST BLOGGER: Things that are Underrated: A Female Perspective


"I jotted down a few things that are underrated to women--there are, of course, many, many others, and once I started, I thought of a bunch more, but these seemed fitting with the overall tone and subject matter of The DL from DL (bt dub this is evidence that I am a nerd in love with words who is worried about audience awareness and shifts in tone). So, here you go..."

Toilet Seat Covers:

Not that you are really going to use one because, really, it’s only a thin layer of paper separating you from the filth of the toilet seat, but it is nice to have the option. Without a seat cover, you are left to a) manufacture your own from pieces of toilet paper or b) hover. Of course, most of us ladies begin to master the art of hovering as soon as we’re tall enough to execute the maneuver, but depending on the condition of the facilities (and our own condition—especially when frequenting the restroom at a neighborhood drinking establishment) the hover becomes a little bit more dicey, which leads me to my second underrated item…

Purse Hooks/Shelves:

These little beauties are in most women’s bathroom stalls and even available under the lip of some bars, but when they are MIA, things become much more difficult. Imagine trying to balance, probably in heels, with a clutch (a small bag with no strap/handle) [Editor's note: this is an outstanding use of a parenthetical explanation, since "clutch" means something different to DL readers.] in your hand while reaching for some t.p. Not pretty. But, there is no way in hell that bag is going to touch the ground. No effing way—I’m not sure how many germs/bacteria are on a bathroom floor, but I’m pretty sure I don’t want a single one of them to touch the bag that I will then carry under my arm for the rest of the night.

The other place a purse hook comes in handy is at a bar when the object of the night is to do a little of what DL often refers to as “recruiting” and what I’ll call “talent scouting.” Yes, the right purse is a fabulous and important accessory, but the ability to gesture to, mingle with, and even touch possible prospects free of baggage is integral to a woman’s ability to discern what type of talent is in the room. Take notice, bag hooks—overlooked and underrated.

Extra Hair Tie:

In your car, your gym bag, your desk...the extra hair tie to put your hair up for a post-work workout, for the drive home, or for a hot/stressful afternoon at work is a must. Plus, the moment you discover that you do indeed possess said hair tie is full of bliss and relief. You don’t know how valuable that hair tie is until you don’t have one handy.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Song of the Day - "Paralyzer"

It just occurred to me that it was time for a new SotD post, so in honor of staying in the IE and crashing in the Hoser's room this past weekend, here it is. "Paralyzer" by Finger Eleven. It is a quality jam with lyrics to which anyone can relate. Frozen and paralyzed by someone you see in a public establishment (usually one in which they serve adult beverages)...I am hereby resolving not to be this guy this weekend. Carpe diem!

I hold on so nervously
To me and my drink
I wish it was cooling me
But so far, has not been good
It’s been shitty
And I feel awkward, as I should
This club has got to be
The most pretentious thing
Since I thought you and me
Well I am imagining
A dark lit place
Or your place or my place

Well I’m not paralyzed
But, I seem to be struck by you
I want to make you move
Because you’re standing still
If your body matches
What your eyes can do
You’ll probably move right through
Me on my way to you

I hold out for one more drink
Before I think
I’m looking too desperately
But so far has not been fun
I should just stay home
If one thing really means one
This club will hopefully
Be closed in three weeks
That would be cool with me
Well I’m still imagining
A dark lit place
Or your place or my place

Well, I’m not paralyzed
But, I seem to be struck by you
I want to make you move
Because you’re standing still
If your body matches
What your eyes can do
You’ll probably move right through
Me on my way to you

We’ll, I’m not paralyzed
But, I seem to be struck by you
I want to make you move
Because you’re standing still
If your body matches
What your eyes can do
You’ll probably move right through
Me on my way to you

I’m not paralyzed
But, I seem to be struck by you
I want to make you move
Because you’re standing still
If your body matches
What your eyes can do
You’ll probably move right through
Me on my way to you

You’ll probably move right through
Me on my way to you

You’ll probably move right through
Me on my way to you

Article of the Day - VC Star Covers Mobicip

Catching kids on the go

As more children start to use mobile devices — from cell phones to small netbooks — an increasing number of applications are cropping up to appeal to and protect young minds.

Some are aimed at the parent who casually hands over an iPhone to a child in the supermarket for a few moments of distraction. Others are aimed at families that may have young children or teens with their own devices.

Homes with kids ages 4 to 14 own an average of 11 consumer electronics devices that were selected for a survey by The NPD Group, a market research company. (more)

Friday, June 26, 2009

Things that are Underrated

Apple juice. Mmmmmm. Not feeling another Diet Coke to get through that last hour of the workday standing between you and the traffic race track? Grab an apple juice. I LOVE the DJA fridge!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Deep in the Liver of Texas

When I got to San Antonio, what do you know...there were two girls there waiting to get me drunk.  Once the three of us came to the consensus that driving back to Whit's place in New Braunfels only to turn around and head back to San Antonio was stupid, we decided the next best option was to drink there, so it was straight to the Riverwalk for a little taste of Texas.  I opted for a chopped brisket sandwich and chose to close it out with a couple Shiner Bocks and a Lone Star.  From there, we still had some time to kill before I had to be back at the hotel, so we wandered for a bit and landed at Pat O'Brien's, a New Orleans style bar right off the River.  What do you get when you put the three of us in a New Orleans bar?  Three hurricanes, of course!  How else was I going to deal with a wedding rehearsal?

Whit and Katie picked me up after the rehearsal dinner, and we headed back to New Braunfels where I got my first look at what would become the party house for the weekend. We changed and began the trek toward Austin.

Say what you will about Texas being...well...Texas and being full of Texans ridiculous people, but I defy you to find a better bar scene than Sixth Street in Austin. I can only imagine what a debacle that place would be when school is in session. Going to have to figure it out and get back down there to visit when that happens. Additionally, prices of adult beverages in Texas are much more palatable than those here in SoCal. Draw your own conclusions on how this thing went. I don't remember too many details of it. I just remember posing for some pics with Katie that I'm sure will end up on facebook and two-stepping with Whit in a bar.

What do you do after a night of drinking? Let's go to the phones, Johnny! First up was my brother, on whom Katie put the full court press to try to get him to come down to Texas...the next day. Clearly this was not going to happen, but she was convinced that she could change his mind. It was a valiant effort, but it was ultimately unsuccessful. Then came the best drunk dial ever. Short. Sweet. Straight to voicemail...Grant. I was in the back seat and held my phone up between the seats so everyone could say hi, which is exactly what Katie did. Whit, however, took a little different route. Grant had to piece this one together for me a couple days later, but what he heard on the other end of the line was Whit saying, "Mississippi...I don't know you, but I would like to get to," which, of course, elicited a "Proooooooooooooove iiiiiiiiiiiiiiit" from me in the back seat. Then I hung up. Amazing.

The capper for the night, though, was something my roommate will appreciate--Whataburger. For most of y'all (yes, that is a y'all) who read this, Whataburger is not a late night drunk food option since you, like me, are located in the Pacific time zone. This is better than Del Taco. This is the Texas version of Tommy's. It's not drenched in chili, so it's a different animal, but it is definitely that quality of drunk food. Open 24 and very drunk-friendly. (Of course! It's in Texas!)

Saturday morning/early afternoon saw the brief warmup float down the Comal River referenced in the previous entry. The party house is walking distance from the river, and with a 15 minute walk, we got in at the beginning. My first float was pretty solid....got through the chute with my hat and glasses intact and without losing my beer. Not bad for a river rookie. Once we got to the river exit by Whit's house, it was time for me to bail and get ready for the wedding.

As it turned out, the best way for me to get to the wedding on time and keep all party house guests happy was to take Whit's car, which turned out to be key to life. (See Julie references in previous blog entry.) However, it also caused me not to get back to the party house until after 5 a.m., meaning everyone was asleep, and I had to call Whit multiple times to be let into the house. Oh well.

What do you do later in the morning after you've just gotten back at 5? Of course, you get up a few hours later and get ready for another day of drunken debauchery. This day, though, the river to be floated was the Guadalupe. This would be the source of the various gashes on my feet and legs (I wiped out hardcore on the first rapid) along with the atomic sunburn that I apparently couldn't feel because I'd had too many Lone Star Lights. This is also, however, where the group really expanded. I have a slew of new facebook friends (big shout outs to Becky, Megan, Tim, Tom, Jenn, etc.). Once you share beer, river junk food, rocks and rapids with a group of people, seeking them out on facebook doesn't seem nearly as weird.

Those who were staying around headed back to Whit's house for some burgers grilled expertly by the brawl tandem efforts of Whit and me. Sided up with some H-E-B macaroni and cheese and some potato salad along with an outdoor setting, they made a great dinner for along with our post-river drinking. Not too long after that, we passed out. Weird.

Aaaaaaaanyway, the next morning saw a Whataburger breakfast run and my introduction to their breakfast taquitos. Now, I am very disappointed that we don't have this fine establishment on the west coast. It's a tortilla with egg, cheese and sausage wrapped tightly into, shockingly, a taquito. There are no words to describe how great this was on that particular morning. Nonetheless, the traveling contingent left, and it was down to Whit and me.

Since I'd checked into my flight the night before, all that was left was to pack my stuff up and get ready to go. Since we had time, Whit took me for "real" Texas barbecue. (Apparently what I'd had before was fake...who knew?) Whatever the difference was, it was amazing. Rudy's was what you would expect out of a BBQ place in Texas with license plates and neon lights all over the walls and where you order your meat by the pound and they hand you some white bread. The rest is up to you. There is a salad bar looking thing with pickles and peppers. I crushed a half pound of brisket, five slices of bread and a lot of pickles.

I closed out the weekend by replacing the string on Whit's guitar (that had broken earlier when I was trying to tune it for her). After that, it was time to head to teh airport, where I cleared security in about 15 minutes (take notes, LAX), checked my e-mail on the
free airport WiFi (take notes, LAX) and boarded my flight back to reality.

The checklist I received from Sarah (who, no doubt, cringed at the very reference of pickles in this post) will be addressed in a subsequent post. It's legit. Check back soon.

Monday, June 22, 2009

The Big Day for Mr. and Mrs. Wilkins

After a short float down the Comal River, it was time to get ready to roll to San Antonio for the wedding. As things would turn out, the easiest way for me to get there would be to borrow Whit's car and drive there myself. This turned out to be fortuitous--more on that later.

So I met Michael in the lobby at 5:30, per the instructions we were given to us, and we proceeded to do nothing but sit there at the bar while they took pictures, grumbling about how there was absolutely zero reason we needed to be there so early. Like the 5-year-old that I am, I got ADD and need to do something, so Michael and I wandered into one of the ballrooms which happens to have a white baby grand in it. After playing that a little bit, it was finally time for us to hop on the bus and go to the cathedral.

When we got there, we had to track down the florist, who was supposed to deck us out with our boutonnieres. The ceremony was sans-DN and, thus, went much more smoothly than either of the rehearsals. All the bridesmaids (especially sweetheart) did a great job, the groomsmen were nails, and Team Readers repped it big time. In all it was a beautiful and fitting ceremony (complete with some Pachelbel, which I of course loved and shared with Michael), but after vows and kiss, we were all ready to get back to the hotel and start partying.

The cocktail reception went fairly well, other than Michael and I kind of being a rudderless package deal as the two token single guys, so we wandered around together for a while, further cementing our reputation as a bromance couple (on which Nicole called us out at dinner). Nothing to do but embrace it. Anyway, we worked the room and talked to people while taking advantage of the open beer and wine bar, multiple cheese options and the friendliness of our bartender José (a salty vet of the St. Anthony Hotel), but then it came time for dinner.

Team Reader's seating (along with that of the other dates of the wedding party) was at Nicole's parents' table, which was a fun dynamic when we were all there getting hammered, but after dinner, as the room started to migrate to the dance floor, the two single guys were hanging around drinking and surveying what we had in the way of options. Halfway across the room sat three girls together at a table looking like they weren't really planning on moving, so I called the audible and we went in.

I think everyone who reads this blog knows that Nicole and I masqueraded as a couple for a while (she and Michael actually dated...for real), but I really didn't know any of her friends. What I found out immediately upon our approach to the three aforementioned girls sitting solo was that they were Nicole's roommates...in Boston...when I broke up with her. After that initial awkwardness, I kept talking to them and being friendly. I either won the battle or they were kind enough to tolerate me...either way, I considered it a win. One of these girls (Julie), though, (the one who had actually shared the room with Nicole) lives in SoCal right now and apparently frequents the bar in Claremont that Topher had happened to roll into that night. Once this SoCal conversation opened up, I left the other two to Michael and kept talking to Julie. We exchanged numbers and are looking to do something next weekend.

Per the previous agreement, once "Amazed" by Lonestar came on, I was up to the dance floor with Nicole, which meant I had to bail on Julie. Heard the first two notes, excused myself and took off like a shot for the dance floor. It was a great time to just catch up with Nicole a little since everything had been such a whirlwind and we hadn't had a chance to even talk to each other since the night before. Once the song was over, I returned to my post at the table. As the group kind of thinned out, we were all more or less back to circulating the room, until I found myself talking to a couple rogue cougars who decided I would be a good person to ask about whether or not it was open bar. After I told them no and they were unsuccessful fishing for me to buy them drinks, I managed to get them to join the dance floor.

So with Julie and Michael laughing hysterically at me, I was out on the dance floor wondering if they were looking to maul me until I found out that they were there with their husbands (quitters). So then I gave Nicole a look, and she came, grabbed my hand and pulled me out of the spot where I had been surrounded by our two party crashers. I guess I don't need Grant to attract cougars...who knew?

Eventually, at around 2 a.m. the party closed down for real, and it was time to leave the St. Anthony. Michael, Julie and I were the only ones left who weren't staying there, so the three of us walked outside to the valet parking area. Since I had the car, I was going to give Julie a ride back to her hotel...except we didn't end up going back to the hotel immediately. We decided to go to Denny's (which was right next to her hotel), but we discovered that we're both somewhat hard-headed about things and didn't want to get violated pay for parking. So, we drove around San Antonio until we found a spot to park, not realizing that we were really nowhere near Denny's now.

So, we walked through San Antonio at 2 a.m. en route to Denny's where we saw all sorts of interesting people and spent more time chatting, telling stories and generally getting to know each other. Around 3, we figured it was probably time to call it and walked back across the parking lot to her hotel...where we, once again, got entrenched in our conversation and stood in the lobby talking as the guard made rounds multiple times. After he came by the fourth time, we figured (once again) that it was time to call it, so I walked her to her room, and we said good night...at about 4:30 in the morning. Then I took the 15-minute walk back to the car and rolled back to New Braunfels, getting there about 5:15 a.m. That was one hell of an interesting night. Congrats Nicole and Chris! Safe travels to everyone (especially my brother in bromance, Michael), and see you in SoCal, Julie!

The Rehearsal, Dinner: Beginnings of a Bromance

Friday, after I'd gotten a bite to eat and had a few adult beverages with Whit and Katie, it came time for them to drop me off at the St. Anthony hotel before the rehearsal dinner. Now, any rehearsal in which I'd been involved (which, in fairness, has only been one), has been pretty low key. I figured it was kind of weird that we were required to be in shirt and tie for it, but I wear it for work, so I just kind of rolled with it. Then we met the deacon and things made more sense.

So Deacon Napoleon (who, in subsequent mentions, will be referred to simply as DN) rolls in and decides that not only are we going to rehearse the ceremony (essentially half of a mass - the liturgy of the word) twice, he is going to give all of us a lesson in the Catholic faith and explain everything that is going on ad nauseum. People in attendance were either Catholic (Nicole's side) or disinterested (Chris's side), so ol' boy was whiffing either way. To his credit criticism "credit," he didn't care.

Now, this might have been acceptable, had he not been a jerk about it, barking orders at Cathy (the maid of honor) and condescendingly calling her "sweetheart." So for about 10 minutes, this guy had our attention, but then we collectively decided we didn't like him, so we became like 5-year-olds trying to get away with anything and everything.

We were gathered around the altar and getting our lesson in God only knows what obscure and impertinent area of the Catholic faith, when I decided to be friendly, as our other reader Michael got there. We whispered a quick introduction, shook hands and then turned back toward the altar to receive our icy stare from DN. Anyway, these little things went on back and forth all through the two complete run-throughs we did.

I emphasize complete, since the multiple Shiner Bocks, Lone Stars and a hurricane had absconded with my sobriety a while before, and I was perturbed to find out that I had to do my reading as part of said dry run(s). So since I had the second reading, I got to sit up there facing the congregation and Nicole and Chris, since they were at the front on the sweet little two-person wedding kneeler. So after Michael has read and taken the seat right next to me and DN is droning on and on about how important all this stuff is, Nicole is sticking her tongue out at me, and I am mouthing the words "I'm drunk" to her. She laughs, and leans over to Chris to relay the message, which causes him to laugh too. Then when Michael and I proceed to have a sidebar up on the altar, DN finally catches on to the fact that he is completely losing us and says it's time for the second reading.

I managed to get through my reading without slurring or otherwise butchering it, so Michael and I headed back to our seats for the rings and the whole "I do" thing. Since Nicole and Chris have to move, the best man comes up with the rings and "sweetheart" has to wrestle with the train. After that, it's showtime for the third member of our reading team, Jill (best man's gf), who was quite nervous about the prayer of the faithful and the responses and such considering she is not Catholic. Michael and I coached her through it, and it was really then that we declared ourselves a team. Team Readers: we like to party. (Jill did not have time on Saturday to get our t-shirts made: FAIL)

Mercifully, the rehearsal finally ended, and it was time to go get dinner at Paesano's on the Riverwalk, which is a great venue, as, on a Friday night, it was packed. Since I had gotten a ride with Michael after the rehearsal, we chatted and got to know a little more about one another and figured out that we were the only two single guys in this entire operation. This seemed like a fair time to introduce him to the zero-one evaluation scale, so once we got to the Riverwalk, there were "zero" and "one" calls abounding.

The night ended with Michael, Nicole and I walking through San Antonio and eventually back to the hotel while talking about old times and the day ahead. Then I changed, grabbed my stuff and it was time to get back to Whit and Katie for a recruiting trip to Austin.

Friday, June 19, 2009

First (Brief) Stop

McCarran International Airport, Las Vegas:

Not much notable has happened so far, but in case you have a morning flight out of LAX, keep in mind that 5 a.m. is the TSA shift switch, so you will experience a holdup there. No worries for me, as I had plenty of time since the dad taxi was running early, but there were a handful of people in the vicinity who were pissed.

Also, people still try to take full bottles of water through security. First time flying in freaking 10 years? What are you people thinking? You're stupid, and I'm glad they took your water away and I got to watch you have a conniption about it.

On to the flight...where there was no one on it. The plane was literally less than half full, which was awesome. I had a row to myself for the hour I spent reading Wired, which included an article about the auto industry and and how it needs to follow the telecommunications industry's lead of leaning on innovation from third parties like Transonic Combustion (potential DJA client prospect in Camarillo, Calif.) while naming Alcatel-Lucent among the innovators whose model should be followed. Love it.

More later...gotta board the flight to San Antonio. Later, y'all.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Song of the Day - "Nobody Understands Me But My Guitar"

Video and lyrics unavailable, but it's a great jam from Buddy Guy that just came across on pandora.com.

(from the "Can't Quit the Blues" album)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Article of the Day - More Accolades for Gilmartin

What a week to be a Celt baseball fan! One of my boys making lots of noise at the next level. (Your gold unis still suck, though, Gilmartin.)

Sean Gilmartin Named NCBWA Freshman Pitcher of the Year
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Florida State's Sean Gilmartin made headlines for the second straight day as he was named the 2009 Pro-Line Athletic National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association's (NCBWA) Freshman Pitcher of the Year as announced on Tuesday, June 9.

Gilmartin, ranked No. 4 in the nation in wins, finished his freshman campaign with a 12-3 record and a 3.49 ERA in 98.0 innings of work. He struck out 83 batters, walked 37, registered two complete games and one save, while opponents hit just .221 against him. (more)

Sunday, June 7, 2009

CIF Champs

Article of the day, pictures of the day, video of the day...holy crap...they won the thing!

Great start, better finish: Crespi wins Div. II baseball title

ANAHEIM - When the Crespi of Encino baseball team opened the season with seven straight wins, Ryon Healy thought his Celts were the best team in their division. When the team lost three of four following the undefeated start, Healy thought his Celts were the best team in their division. (more)

Video of the day

Well done, boys!

To my boys, the outgoing seniors:

Andres Andy Cerda, Daniel Coulsell, Sean Fisher, Aaron Ammann, Spencer Wendt, Jordan Camacho, Sean McIntyre and Zack Wiley (L to R in the pic)...wish you guys the best going forward. It was a pleasure to be there at the start, and I was ecstatic to be able to be there at the end. Effin' a, boys!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Celts win! 8-1....CIF champs. Absolute pandemonium at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. More on this later when I'm not confined to the length of an SMS message.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Congrats Gil

Freshman All American


But most importantly, he wears stirrups.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Article of the Day - Good Enough

Crespi starter Kearns is `good enough' to lift Celts into title game

"All week, all I heard was how great their hitting was," Kearns said. "When I came out here, I told myself that if we can hold them to under four or five (runs), we might have a chance. When you come out and give up five, it's a little iffy.

"But it was good enough."

Way to hang in there and get a job done, kid. But we really have to work on your interviews.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


Gotta love a blog post that links to another blog post. I love anything that involves baseball and Celts win, though.

CIF Division II Title Game

Crespi vs. Huntington Beach
Saturday, June 6
4:30 p.m.
Angel Stadium of Anaheim

I will be there.