Paul's Blog

The Well-Grounded Yuppie

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Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Thanksgiving trip to Charlotte

It's been a while since I visited Charlotte. Had a great time, wish I could do it more often instead of only a few times a year.

My original plan was to drive down from DC on Wed night to go bar hopping with my friend Andrew in Raleigh, since we had so much fun doing it the last time, but he got sick so I decided to drive Thursday morning instead. I stopped in Apex and Raleigh to visit some friends and families of friends I hang out with while I lived in Raleigh, then had a late dinner with my friend in Winston Salem. We rented the playstation 2 game "Justice League Heroes" and started playing it around midnight. It was a super fun 2 player adventure/beat'em up game. I thought we'd beat the game by 3-4AM and then I'd start driving to Charlotte from Winston. Before I knew it, it was around 7:30AM and we still haven't beaten it, or knew how long it would be. So I decided to leave the game unbeaten and drive home to Charlotte, got there a little after 9AM.

I spent Saturday with my mother, took her to a Charlotte Bobcat's game, which we lost to Miami Heat miserably. Spent Sunday driving around, seeing lots and lots of friends, had a blast. Wish I could've stayed there longer.

I decided to leave Charlotte Monday afternoon. On my drive back, I stopped in Raleigh again, and spent some time with a former co-worker, Garrett. He's one of the most talented writers I know. We came up with a semi-hobby/semi-business plan: We start an industry blog, put adsense on it, and target the expensive phrases, hope people click on them, and split the profit. We have the perfect combination of talent: I'll handle the setting things up, bringing in traffic/marketing, and he'll handle content generation. I don't expect it to make any "real money", but it sounds like a great hobby.

I got home around 2:30AM, went to bed around 3AM. Woke up the next day (or the same day) to go to work. Wasn't a pleasant experience, but it was worth it for this great trip. I hope to do it again over Christmas break.

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Monday, November 27, 2006

Yellow Rose Cafe & Billiards in Charlotte

I haven't shot pool in a while, and I'm glad I got a chance to go play pool with my friend Nick while I'm in Charlotte. It was the same friend I used to play this drinking game with. We played at this pool hall called "Yellow Rose Cafe & Billiards". It was my first time being there.

It had a lot of pool tables, but the first one we played on had a "table curve", where the ball rolls funny because the table wasn't completely leveled. We switched tables after 3-4 games, and the 2nd table seemed fine. Yellow Rose Cafe & Billiards was somewhat less crowded than other pool halls I went to in Charlotte; it had a "neighborhood bar" vibe to it. But then again, the vibe could've came from it being a Sunday night.

The price of Yellow Rose seemed more than reasonable. Maybe it was just my perception due to the prices I'm used to in DC and all billiard places cost that much in Charlotte. We shot for about an hour and a half, had a coke each, and our total bill was $13. I was really surprised, I would've imagined to be around $13 each.

Overall, I think Yellow Rose was a fun place to hang out. Friendly staff, cheap pool, even though the quality of the tables is questionable.


Tuesday, November 21, 2006

A Pleasant Trip - Fortune Cookie Message

I went to a Chinese place for lunch today, and the fortune cookie said "You will have a pleasant trip". I don't think I ever got that message, and it's pretty cool to get that message the day before I drive to Charlotte.

Are fortune cookies fresh enough to be "seasonal"? Example: Would it say "Love is in the air" around Valentine's Day, and say "You will have a pleasant trip" around Thanksgiving? Or do Chinese restaurants buy in such bulk that the fortune cookies stay in their back rooms for months and months, and it's just a coincidence that I got one at the right time?


Friday, November 17, 2006

First Sick Day In DC

Today, I went home around 1PM because I didn't feel too well. Slight dizziness, probably a small fever. It's the first time I got sick during my current job, which I started in March.

It's probably because of my date last night, we took a brisk walk in Old Town Alexandria, and sat out by the waterfront. There was a slight breeze, and I took my jacket off and put it on her to be a gentleman, even though she didn't say she was cold.

I'm starting to agree more and more with the saying about dating: "No good deed goes unpunished".


Friday, November 10, 2006

Volunteering Continued

I rarely believe in "Giving a man a fish" type of volunteering. Instead, I'm usually more interested in helping people help themselves. But I guess once in a while, I'll "give out fish" just to do it.

Today, I helped make/pack sandwiches for the homeless. It reminded me a lot of the typical middle school lunch bag. It was a brown bag, with a bologna and cheese sandwich in one of those small sandwich bags, a snack (either apple sauce or pudding), and a fruit juice box.

We packed about 80 of them, and I'm delivering them to a shelter after work. Speaking of volunteering, I think I'm going to start volunteering at Byte Back Community Computer Center. I'll be teacher Excel, level 1 and 2, but mostly "real world applications" of Excel. Hopefully, it'll be fun.


Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Halloween Night Adventures

I'm surprised. Today's the day after Halloween and none of my friends blogged about Halloween adventures, I guess I'll be the first one.

I dressed up as the grim reaper and went bar hopping at Mt Pleasant, DC. I had a great time. Instead of having their busses take me to the other two bars, I decided to randomly walk up and down the street and look for bars.

I stopped at 3 bars and a restaurant (with a bar), and got one drink each over two hours. The restaurant was an interesting experience. It was a Mexican restaurant, and all the people there seemed to be able to speak Spanish. But the bartender, Heidi, was extremely nice and friendly, I ordered a rum & coke. While sipping on my rum & coke, I socialized a little with the others that were sitting in a bar, gave some props to others that were wearing Scream masks and such. It's Halloween night, everyone was drinking, everyone was looking for a good time, and nobody was a trouble maker. I guess that's one of the perks of being an adult; being able to go out and have fun without someone picking a fight.

I met some interesting people in great costumes, had a blast, got a few #'s, had a great time.