i see alice in wonderland, i see malice in sunderland

Posted on Saturday 21 November 2009

sense :: hearing // The Streets – Trust Me (remixed by Datawrong)
Aria - Alicia Florence

Stumbled on the image up there (and the wallpaper sized version if you click on it) and it reminds me to run out and pick up the next volume of Aria that was released this month. I know I’ve mentioned it elsewhere, but there’s something about the almost utopian story and Alicia’s smile that’s incredibly soothing and calming. I think it has to do with the fact that she’s always peacefully happy – almost always calm; she’s the epitome of zen. Even when she’s scrubbing the floors, she understands that the universe has chosen her at this very moment to enjoy the bliss of scrubbing the floors. It’s a sense of peace that I strive to attain someday, even though I’m completely aware that it’s a conscious choice – one that doesn’t require you to run from the realities and hardships of life, but embrace them like water washing over you. Running from them or bracing against them only makes it worse.

In any event, the “biggest loser” competition at the office is going well! I’m in the middle of the pack (and definitely not one of the poor folks in the contest who have actually gained weight), but I think there’s somethin’ shady going on with some of the folks at the front – either that or I really need to step up my game! My DDR aerobics are great and I manage to slip in about 30-45 minutes a day of them, but maybe it’s time to pull my workout clothes out of the back of the car and hit the elliptical at the office gym or step it up!

So last week, I picked up a Verizon Wireless, and I have to admit, I’m pleased with it in just about every way. I mean, there are some apps that I miss because it’s Android and not my trusty iPod Touch, but my chief worry when I got it was that I’d regret just not jumping ship on an iPhone and instead taking a chance on something new – I don’t regret it at all. I have games to play, the contacts syncing with Facebook and GMail and everything is killer (it’s crazy calling my coworkers and having it recognize their names just because I forgot I added them as friends on Facebook) and of course I really like the Google navigation that’s included – I seriously don’t need GPS anymore – just one of those fancy car docks.

Last week I also think I found what very well may be my favorite local watering hole. The place is called Frisco Grille – it’s actually next door to a killer coffee shop (Tim – you’ll remember it, you ran the joint for years) called Riverside, and according to my boss they serve amazing tapas. When I was there it was a little late for food and we stayed until last call and we got essentially sent home for the night, but the microbrews and beers on tap are legendary – according to some of my other coworkers people come from miles around whenever they open a new cask. When I was there they had live music too, so that’s another couple of points in my book.

Finally, someplace to retreat and have a beer every now and again. My coworkers tend to like the bigger, more bombastic bars in the area like the Greene Turtle or Nottingham’s (in the basement of an office building nearby), or Pub Dog (which I actually like a lot, they have good microbrews and specialty beers brewed on-site too) for happy hours and such, but I don’t mind a cozy spot for a drink now and again. Besides, they have a killer imperial stout It’s funny, there have been an explosion of bars and such since I moved back into the area. I’m glad there’s more to see and do than when I was much younger.

Next week is Thanksgiving, which I’ll likely be spending with family, but I’d like to buckle down and do a little writing as well – I’ve been neglecting my secret project, and to really open the doors the way I want to, I’ll need some killer content to get started with, which requires a couple of days of writing. I keep meaning to do it on the weekends, but I need that time to relax and sleep in a bit. You know, recoup from the rigors of the week.

Aside from this, I’ve been debating a couple of trips lately. I’d like to get up to New York City to visit friends during the holidays (because I hear NYC is gorgeous during the holiday season, and a good friend of mine is about to graduate from grad school and she has an exhibition I’d like to see), but shortly after the holidays I’m thinking about heading to Vegas for CES. Then in March there’s actually a Penny Arcade Expo in Boston (they’re doing a PAX East because so many of us wanted one on our coast), and a couple of months later there’s Otakon again…it’s all about how much the trips will cost, of course – I have the vacation time, that’s not an issue.

Still – it’s always difficult when you haven’t traveled in a while to just make the decision to, make travel plans, and up and do it. The company I work for has a new New York City office now, so I might be able to make it a business trip. Sheesh, if I’m thinking that way, one of my old high school friends I’ve recently re-connected with is in Denver, where we have a huge office. I’ve never been there, and I could make the company send me and pay for me if I wanted to visit. Slowly but surely I’ll make it out to Seattle to visit friends on that coast.

In other news, I picked up a ton of XBox 360 games, but of course I’m running into the problem that I did when I got my first XBox: I have so many now I can’t decide what to play first. Analysis paralysis is a terrible terrible thing. I may need to just pick one at random and fire it up. But first I think I’ll have to sink the cash into XBox Live so I can play online with some of the fine folks who have been prodding me at Plurk to join them for a game.

You know, let me do that now while I’m thinking about it. Then I can set up the thing for streaming video from Netflix – which I’ve really been working lately. I think I’ve seen more movies and anime in the past couple of weeks than I have in the past couple of years. Now I just need to figure out what to do with all of my old VHS tapes!

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