Friday, December 19, 2008

there's a mouse in the house

I had caught a glimpse of the black death-mouse in the past... once under the kitchen cabinet... but i didn't get a great view, so i shrugged it off. Recently though, this mouse has become more bold and brazen, practically taunting me with his escapades through the living room. He has come out while we're watching TV. I've seen him, I've chased him (and man, he's fast). But now he knows i want to kill him. and he only seems to come out as soon as the lights go off.
I've set out a series of traps. Still, nothing.
I do know he likes the christmas tree and he likes the christmas presents. He likes hershey kisses.
I don't know how to catch him.
Thus begins the quest to catch the black death-mouse.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Has blogging become passe?

Probably not.
but with the new job, the new puppy on the way, the holidays and my general lack of motivation, it hasn't been a top priority.

The days of combining exercise and transportation are all but finished.
Now I spend my days driving a gas-guzzling fake suv that only pulls in 25 miles per gallon.

The one thing I'd like to comment on today is gym memberships. My old job allowed me to pay roughly $12 a month to be a member. And since I needed to shower each day on my way to work (because I was sweating while i biked, ran or rollerbladed in), I got my money worth from the shower alone. That deal will be done at the end of this month.

So, do I join a new one? because of where I live, anything that's conveniently located is going to run me upwards of $75 a month. $75 a month to 1. run/bike and 2. lift.
The cold doesn't bother me, so as long as it's not slippery (snowing), i can do cardio outside.
So basically, I'm paying almost $3 a day to pick things up.
Currrent stance : undecided, leaning toward NO.

I'd like to know where health clubs get off charging people. When I worked for a moving company, I used to spend the day lifting and walking... and I got paid for it.
I suppose if you can convince people to pay to do something most of them don't like to do, you might as well take advantage... not to mention, if you own a gym, you don't have to pay the membership fee.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

a reason not to vote

Dear American Democracy,

I've been saving this one up for four years (well, two if you count the last state election). What's worse, a crack addict or a person who doesn't vote? From the reaction I've gotten, they're about the same. How could you not vote? It's your right and your duty as an American.

Here's another right and duty: the right to shut up and stop telling other people what to do. Think for yourself, let others do the same for themselves.
Many will argue it's the most important election of our lifetime. In that case, I'm definitely not voting. Here's why.

Let's say it's dinner time and I'm really craving a lean burger... some lettuce, tomato, pickle and the bun baked fresh. So, I walk up to a restaurant, check over the menu, only to find out it's a chinese restaurant. Great, food that will sit in your stomach with the weight of a cinder block. It's not a tough call, I'm not eating there.

But wait, the chinese food restaurant has a delicious libertarian burger on the menu.
-- awesome... I go in, order the Libertarian burger, only to find out most people don't know what that is so they don't order it. And, since no one orders it, even though it's on the menu, it's out of stock. I'm not getting that burger... and, everyone turns to look if i get up and walk out of the restaurant without eating.

That's how I feel about voting - only, instead of just one meal, it's FOUR FUCKING YEARS OF MY LIFE. I'm not settling for greasy chinese food when I want a lean, healthy burger, so how can you expect me waste the massive responsibiliy of voting by settling for a candidate who isn't even close to what I'm looking for.

As far as I'm concerned, based on the lies and attacks by both candidates, neither is truly a stand-up guy. I don't trust either of them to do what's best for the country. I have friends who would do anything for me and expect nothing in return. These guys tell me they'll do just about anything just to get something in return (my vote).

The state elections this year are a joke. An incumbent who rallied millions of voters in 2004 in John Kerry - or a guy no one's ever heard of. I'm not a John Kerry guy, but I'm also not a guy who walks to the chinese restaurant looking for a burger when I know they aren't going to have one. In other words, voting in the state election's a waste of my time.

The Questions: #1 - Should we get rid of the income tax? Probably the only thing I truly care about at the polls today. But, I'm still undecided... and if I haven't made up my mind by now, it's not fair to the people affected by the vote if I make an impulse decision.

The pros vs the cons: I think it would send a clear message to the government, but I also think they would miss that message. Paying taxes isn't the problem, it's government mismanagement. It's going to happen with or without the income tax. Without the tax they'd raise other taxes while cutting all the wrong programs and costing people their jobs. I believe the income tax to be unconstitutional, but I don't want my vote to be responsible for costing people their jobs...

Question 2 - might be for it if I was still in college. Not sure where I'd stand if I was a parent. Right now, don't care either way.

Question 3 - Complete Apathy. I don't go to the track and I don't work at the track, but some people do. If the dogs are being abused, fix it. regulate it. But, at the same time, if you can do it without putting people out of jobs, that might be a better way to go.

Some people may try and argue the holes in my argument. Sure, it's not air tight. But to them I say, neither is your argument as to why I should vote. It's not my duty to vote just because people say it is... your reasoning has the same huge holes.


Yours in democracy,

Another Disenfranchised Voter

Friday, October 10, 2008

the economy? nope

i visited three grocery stores today (actually, i haven't been to the third one yet, i'm on my way immediately after this is posted). I wasn't shopping around to find the lowest price, although, with the economy tanking, that may not have been a bad idea. I started at trader joes - looking for 3 separate items - brats, sauerkraut and torpedo rolls. I chose trader joes because they're the only place that sells the protein bars i eat, so i figured, while i'm there, i'll pick some up. At the traders, i found brats (made of pork, my least favorite meat). My efforts to find the other two products proved futile when i asked a sales associate who informed me they didn't have either (sorry about the run-on sentence). so, it was off to johnnys. Johnny's came through in a big way on sauerkraut - but no sub rolls. The sub rolls would have to wait. I needed to get home and get everything into the crock pot. It's simmering. It smells fantastic. I'm excited to eat - as soon as i get back from Shaws (or star market, whatever the one on boylston's called).

spare tires don't do much good....

...if you don't have a wrench to get your bike wheel off. Probably something i should have thought of before my tire went flat this afternoon. lucky for me i was only a mile or so away from home and had nowhere to be. from now on, i'm bringing a wrench and the spare tire (along with the pump i always carry)...

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

This country f***ing sucks

Most days after the morning meeting, we wander from work over to the Starbucks at Government Center. Today was no different - well, at least the part about going to get coffee anyway. Dozens of government employees spilled out into city hall plaza. One random passerby - a middle-aged woman wearing a lovely powder blue shirt decided she knew exactly what was going on. At the top of her lungs, she repeated the anthem "This country f'cking sucks!" There were also a few "There are no terrorists" chants thrown in at one point... and there was something about 7 years ago i couldn't make out (likely a reference to 9/11)...
anyway, come to find out, the JFK building evac was a fire drill... basically an excuse for A bunch of federal employees to clog the line at the Buck. This lady continued to scream and holler and make plenty of people uncomfortable. Homeland security officers just stood around and watched. The whole thing made me realize something. In other (allegedly better) countries, someone would have shot the screaming bitch - shutting her up and putting her out of her friggin misery. In this sucky country though, we could never get away with that. Apparently people have rights. What a waste.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

The Beaujolais Party

Winter is right around the corner...
And for all you wine-os, that means The beaujolais is on the way --- two months if my math is correct.
An excuse to party! So, who's throwing the 'overpriced cheap wine' party this year?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

anyone wondering where i went? (very loosely based on a true story)

Some of you probably figured I jumped off a cliff...



and while that's not totally untrue....

... i landed in the water and lived to tell about it. I survived that, only to have a parrot try to eat me.





I escaped sans my hat button...thanks to the help of these monkeys...



then, i got a little tipsy



and somehow wound up spending the night in prison (alcatraz)



luckily, my new wife



managed to help me escape using this tandem bike



and as the sun set on our honeymoon,





I took time to reflect....




and realized, all in all - the wedding and honeymoon were everything my new wife and i could have hoped for.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

hacking the t

are you kidding me? The MBTA going after MIT students to keep them from telling people how to hack into the T and possibly get free rides. The full three-step process is listed below:

1. go to an above-ground green line stop during rush hour.
2. get on via the back door.
3. ignore trolley operator when he/she announces "please come to the front and pay your fare."

and for the record, i'm a good ole' law abiding citizen with a monthly pass.

Olympic Fever

900 gold medals later, i'm kind of sick of it. Except maybe for this event... something about dancing horses.
Also, I think 2012 should do a "city cycling" event - best time wins. Obstacles would include opening car doors (both from the side of the road and in traffic), double-parked box trucks, indecisive pedestrians crossing far from crosswalks and cars turning right from the left lane... not to mention, red lights with cross traffic(cross at your own risk or wait til green). let's make it happen, people!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

straying from the norm today

My ride to work has been dull lately... so, instead, i'll use this forum today to go off on a tangent...

Once in a while i read message boards on the herald and globe. Part of it's boredom, part of it's curiosity about whether i think the same on a particular story. Lately, on two or three occasions, i've skimmed through comments on the "Rockefeller" story de jour.

To my amusement, there's always a couple of comedic individuals who feel the need to trash the herald and how it's "sooo tabloid" and they should cover "real news"...
yet, they're taking the time to log on, read the article, register for an account that lets you comment - then they're commenting about how the herald is waisting their time!

and while I don't necessarily disagree with these comments all the time, i'm not the type to go into go to a restaurant, trash the chef in front of everyone if i don't like the food, and then come back and order the same dish... for one, it's bad etiquette, for two, it's general douchebaggery and for three, i don't enjoy spit in my food... just saying...

The quote of the day on the Herald website comes from "TMAC" it reads:If I read one more article about Clark Rockfeller, I'm literally going to puke

Um, here's an idea, why don't you NOT GO TO THE HERALD WEBSITE WHERE THERE'S SURE TO BE ANOTHER ROCKEFELLER ARCTICLE... and if you do, why don't you NOT CLICK THE LINK THAT ALLOWS YOU TO READ ANOTHER ROCKEFELLER ARTICLE... unless of course you enjoy puking...

I don't know about you guys, but this Rockefeller von Hindenburg story has become my guilty pleasure. I know it's not important "News", but man, it's one hell of an interesting real-life story... it has more twists and turns than some of the mystery novels i've read (okay, more like some of the mystery thriller movies i've seen)... and it's happening right here in boston...

Friday, August 8, 2008

boston: city of pricks

i met some nice folks on the -t- today. they were out-of-towners. i could tell because they weren't total prick bags and they weren't batshit crazy... oh yeah, and the mom talked to me... even though i had headphones on. (secretly i'm a nice person always looking to engage in a conversation. i keep my headphones low just in case someone wants to talk... but i have an image to uphold as well... one which includes not using capital letters in my blog postings... but i digress).

at one point, the train jerked forward - the woman stumbled toward me - landing two or three feet away. She proceeded to apologize, presumably for invading my personal space. HA! I responded with a chuckle, "It's fine. this is the city - and this (gesturing a measurement with my hands that stretched an inch or so) is the extent of personal space." Her husband seemed indifferent - her collegebound son, embarrassed as she asked in her thick southern accent if i grew up here and if i liked the city. she explained how her son was looking at school up here. then, as quick as they arrived, their stop came up and they were gone.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

two things i didn't see coming...

i decided i wasn't going to squish into the front of the green line train today. i had the monthly pass on me, so i held it up and headed for a back door. when i stepped on board, i immediately noticed two things afoul: An overwhelming and horrible stench of body odor consuming the train along with several security cameras.
The security cameras were probably installed to catch gropers, thieves and vandals in the act. It's the first time i've noticed them on a 'c' line train. I imagine they work as a fantastic deterrent to the offending parties. As a lax libertarian, i don't particularly care for them, but i'm not doing anything wrong, so they ain't gonna catch me...

Unfortunately, there's one thing the cameras can't catch that i wish they would... it's an offending odor... Thus, my sense of smell was forced to suffer on my morning commute... If only closed-circuit smell-o-vision really existed..

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Review: Coldplay, remember when...

After work last night, instead of heading home, I was one of the "lucky" thousands of people who got to take in Coldplay at the TD Bank North Garden... The final concert of the band's North American leg of the tour brought me the closure that I needed...like the ex-girlfriend who you run into years later - you just remember all the good times you had, and why you loved her in the first place... but you also remember why you broke up, and ultimately, you know you made the right choice.

Beginning sometime in college, presumably around the year 2000, I hopped on the Coldplay bandwagon... a place I would stay for several years. Our relationship grew more serious with their second Grammy-winning album... It got so bad, that one time, when i was working for the Fox 2-5, i spent nearly an hour injecting every imaginable coldplay song title into a script for a coldplay story.

Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end...and with the (in my opinion)less-than-spectacular release of X&Y, and two somewhat-disappointing concert experiences, our relationship began to sour and Coldplay and I sort of decided to go our seperate ways...

Fast forward to last night - A friend with a free ticket... I knew the "ex" would be there and i was curious - I decided to see if the old "sparks" would fly...

The first song was off their new album - I sort of recognized it, everyone else sang along. I felt a little out of place. I remember the old band, the one I grew to love - but there was a noticeable change.

As the concert went on, I looked around and noticed everyone else appeared to be having a fantastic time... many of them from a younger generation (mind you, i'm only 27)... they were all fans who hadn't had their hearts broken by the band. It reminded me why I "fell in love" with coldplay in the first place... Suddenly I felt waves of nostalgia and even a slight chill when they played "Fix You", a song that a critic once said would have made the album way better if it were Keane's "somewhere only we know". Most of the time, i'd have to agree... but for tonight - it was like our first kiss all over again...

That quick burst of emotion began to fade as I watched Chris Martin flail around the stage like he was having a seizure. Perhaps he knew I was there... trying a little too hard to win me back... as if HE hadn't moved on and he was trying to get my attention... letting me know, HE was the center of attention...

Either way, I thought he was trying too hard... and it made things even more awkward... (and to be honest, i'm not the best dancer, but if i ever pulled some of his moves in public, i'd expect to be sucker punched in the face.) No one else seemed to notice how hard he was trying, seeming to enjoy every second of his antics. After all, love is blind - unfortunately, I had fallen out of love.

Perhaps it was jealousy on my part - Coldplay has gotten too big for me... Chris Martin actually dedicated a song to Tom Brady, who was rumored to be in the audience and to have spent part of the day hanging out with the band.

Overall, The experience brought a flood of emotions - enjoyment, happiness, relief and sadness.
Sadness because this isn't the coldplay I remember. they played just one song (Yellow) off of their critically acclaimed/grammy award winning first album (Parachutes)... and less than half of their second (also grammy winning) album (rush of blood...).

Enjoyment - the songs they did play were beautiful at times - just the way I remember them...

Happiness - i'm glad to see Coldplay has found a new fan base and can go on without me... (i didn't suspect they'd have much "trouble")... they're doing well, better than when i loved them... it's good to see... i'm happy for them.

Relief/Closure - i was satisfied with my decision to move on... we can still remain casual friends - i will continue to enjoy their albums from time to time... especially the nostalgia of the old days (old albums)... but the love that was once there has definitely faded...

A few final notes -
-the confetti was shaped like butterflies... The indy/alternative band i used to know never would have gone that cheesy.

-I saw teenage girls who were so moved by the performance, they were still teary-eyed as i was leaving... or maybe their eyes were watering because they got poked in the face with the butterfly confetti...

-The 40-something year-old fat guy behind me was three sheets to the wind and kept up his ear-piercing whistling throughout the night... despite numerous death stares... he apologized a few times but continued whistling.... at one point, he screamed "the scientist!"... dude, really? Chris Martin to fat guy: Oh hey, fat drunk guy who isn't sitting even close to within an earshot of the stage, you want to hear "the scientist"? sure... i'll get right on that..

-Gweneth showed up, everyone went nuts... would have been cool to see her... (seinfeld was there too...)

-Special effects were well put together and definitely enhanced the show.

-Vocals on some heavier songs were hard to hear/understand

-Best song of the night : Politik (first song of the encore)... that song absolutely blows the roof off any venue they play anytime they play it (remember when they played it at the grammys?)

-runner up (a song i hadn't heard): "yes" - it's system of a down on a lot of Ritalin...

-the globe says drummer Will Champion is "the band's true MVP" - agreed.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

A scam, a ticket and a tow from the department of corruption

Gotta love the DCR. There's no sign of any "no stopping" sign on google maps. Thus, for months, I've parked in one of the two spots on Park Drive, just south of the yellow-painted sidewalk at the corner of Beacon... Never got a ticket because they're both legal spots... well, they used to be.

Apparently DCR officials decided revenues weren't great, so at some point last week, they threw up another pole with a "snow emergency" sign, a "street cleaning" sign (both of these types of signs are common on that street... so most likely, you wouldn't even notice new ones)... but at the top of this one, there was also a rather inconspicuous "no stopping" sign... the old "yellow-painted sidewalk" is still there and clear as day... no additional paint, nothing... But there are two spots in front of the non-painted sidewalk that are all-of-a-sudden no longer legal spots.

We were out of town all weekend and noticed monday while walking home - we got towed... tow and "storage" - $200, ticket $30. Travel time to the tow lot in JP (without the luxury of a car) - 1 hour. Fantastic!

I talked to the woman at the tow lot. she says the sign is brand new and they towed something like 20 cars on one day this weekend, probably Saturday. While we were there, the tow operator came over the nextel... "Towing two cars at the corner of Park and Beacon"... two more suckers.

The worst part is, despite the rather inconspicuous placement of these new signs, I'm pretty sure there's no way to fight it.

It'd be nice to get a warning "hey, we've recently decided you can't park here anymore even though you've been doing it for quite some time. Do it again and we'll tow you".... and while you could probably recoup the $30 ticket, the $200 from the tow lot is as good as gone.

What a scam!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Please, Ken... no more!!

Just fix the damn thing already... How hard is it to pave something?
It's July 21st... and nearly 2 months ago, I wrote a blurb about how it was a good idea to tear up the road at Kenmore Square on Memorial Day Weekend while the Red Sox were on the road and work commuters had an extra day off... I quickly took it back... Fast forward to now. The roads in the square remain a disaster. I don't so much mind the construction, but at least pave the roads evenly enough that you don't need a Pinzgauer to get from one side to the other. They have paved the roads, but considering the job that was done, i think the guy driving the paving machine was on meth... So, for the most part, I've been avoiding Kenmore by travelling up Boylston Street instead.

My concern is for this coming Friday. I, along with dozens of other cyclists - will have to face the beast... Bikers from the outskirts of the city will descend on the square on their way to work as part of Bike to Work Friday. The sense of unity with other cyclists is an enjoyable feeling, which is why I very much want to be a part of this event. What is not an enjoyable feeling is battling the giant potholes and large chunks of debris strewn about the roadway.

I will wait at the checkpoint that is Kenmore Square... but I wish the city would move a little faster in taking care of major project, as it has become a major project getting through kenmore square...


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Not so Fast: maybe you should shower

Last year, I'd cycle to work every day - rain, shine or even snow. As the summer
months came, one or two other bikes began to inhabit the rack in front of the
JFK Federal Building on Cambridge Street. And on days when rain
threatened, there were always a few spaces under the overhang at City Hall as
well.

Fast forward to this past week. Unless I missed something, it's not National Bike to Work Week.
Yet, on the way in, I'm passing 15 or 20 bikers each morning, the City Hall rack is full and the JFK Building is teetering on overflowing. Come 9:15am, I have to settle for a spot tucked somewhere in the middle of the rack.

So, who's to blame (or thank) for this increase in ridership? Perhaps it's the oil companies with their skyrocketing prices... perhaps it's our wounded Mayor Tom Menino and his new found passion for biking... perhaps there are other factors that i'm missing.

No matter the cause, there are concerns. It's not just the safety of the increasing amount of riders... It's their work colleagues whom I worry for.

Here's the thing: my riding clothes consist of shorts and a t-shirt and a backpack full of work clothes... and conveniently, my health club (gym) is located approximately one block from work. I always shower there on my way into work. But i'm sure not all riders have that luxury. And along with an increase in riders, I've noticed an increase in riders who are wearing pants/work clothes. Does this mean they are skipping the shower?

It's been 70-80 degrees each morning, and you may not break a sweat with a manufactured 15 mile-per-hour breeze in your face... but, unless you're cold-blooded, when you come to a stop, the increase in "feels-like" temperature is enough to cause anyone to break a sweat.

So, while drinking and driving don't go together, biking and showering do...
You may be "saving the environment and money," but at what cost? A better world for everyone includes an odorless you.

So please, for the love of your colleagues, take a shower. Otherwise, consider another means of transportation like driving or taking the T...

Thursday, July 10, 2008

to the guy on the moped... and to the people who hate bicyclists

guy on the moped: um... sorry about that one. I know I cut you off at Park Drive today just as the light turned green. Thanks for yielding to me, and not cursing me out even though you had the right of way. I truly do appreciate it.

Some insight for people who hate bicyclists, particularly the part where we run red lights:
It's easy to notice a lot of animosity between the drivers of the two different types of vehicles.
And while this won't make things all better, but it will at least lay out the thought process of one cyclist who doesn't always follow the LAWS of the road. Hopefully this will help create more of an understanding with the drivers who get upset at cyclists.

~ pedestrian crossing (the unwritten rules)~
It's that old saying "No harm, No Foul"... An unwritten rule I strongly believe in... In Boston, hoards of pedestrians participate in the illegal activity of jaywalking... including me. I cross when the hand signal is red and I cross when there's no crosswalk.... that is, as long as there are no cars coming. While I occasionally fail, I make every effort to avoid slowing or blocking traffic.

Other than the fact it's technically illegal, if crossing does not inconvenience or threaten to injure anyone (including the pedestrian), there really shouldn't be a problem. Laws are meant to outline a societal standard and protect people... but if a law is not enforced, often a different unwritten standard forms from the masses. I know BPD isn't going to ticket me, (I often cross along with several officers on my way to work), so i, along with many others in the city choose to follow the basic human rules of safety and convenience.

Of course, there will always be people who abuse the unwritten rules and cross when there's traffic coming. It strikes me as selfish that someone would make a conscious decision to inconvenience someone else so they can save a few seconds. I don't condone it.

~cyclists and red lights~
A common gripe among drivers - is over bicyclists who run red lights. I'm one of them.
On my bicycle, I follow a similar pedestrian-like thinking when it comes to red lights... If there's no traffic coming and no peds crossing, I'm going through the red light (cautiously). Why? the PD doesn't bother to enforce the law, so there's no risk to me... i instead choose to follow the basic societal rules of safety and convenience for all. No traffic, no harm. I know it bothers some drivers sitting at the red light, but it doesn't hurt them and it doesn't inconvenience them. If there's traffic coming, I'll stop. If not, what's the problem?

Late at night, I sometimes see automobile drivers (particularly on beacon street in the back bay) creep through red lights when there's no traffic coming... Fine by me... You aren't endangering anyone, you aren't inconveniencing anyone... I personally wouldn't do it because I believe there is the slight risk of a ticket involved... but some people are more risk-takers than I...

For those who argue "technically illegal" is still illegal, and thus wrong (and everyone should follow the laws), I point out this example: sometimes drivers speed. 26mph in a 25mph zone is technically illegal. Find me a driver who believes there's something wrong with going 26 in a 25 and I will consider changing my attitude...

Finally, when I'm riding, I CAN take a whole lane. It's legal, and if you've ever crashed full speed into the opening door of parked car on the side of the road, you understand why i'm out as far as I am. I try to avoid inconveniencing motorists, but when it comes to safety, I believe safety is more important than convenience. My life and well-being is worth a lot more than the few extra seconds you'd save by barrelling through...

Plus, on a gruesome note, if i was close enough to the side of the road and got hit by an opening door, fell into traffic and landed under your tire, you'd have to wait for the police and fill out an accident report and you'd wind up being REALLY late to wherever it was you were in such a rush to get to. You might even have to spend a day in court clearing things up... Hitting me would inconvenience you, as well as my employer, who would have to find a replacement for me. My friends and family would be inconvenienced, having to reschedule their week in order to attend a wake and a funeral... I'm not willing to risk inconveniencing all those people just so you can save a few seconds.

Please, next time you have to go around a stupid cyclist, instead of getting mad, just think of how much time you save by not accidentally running them over. That's time with your friends or time fishing or time making the world a better place...
With that said, there ARE dumb and inconsiderate cyclists on the road - they probably have driver's licenses as well. I personally would rather see them on a bike though... it's much safer for everyone else.


And while I'm not saying we need to get along, I'm saying we should try and understand each other in order to safely co-exist...

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

to the lady who pushed me on the T

to the lady who pushed me at Park Street: You achieved what you wanted, you've royally pissed me off. Here's a few things you may not be aware of: I pay for my ride. Because of that, I have just as much of a right to stand anywhere I want on the T as any other paying customer. If it's crowded, I'm going to respect people's personal space and try to stand where there's room... often times, especially on a green line train, that's by the door. When the doors are open, I will squeeze to the side so people can get through the doorway. I'm not blocking the door, there's plenty of room to fit two wide through the middle.
Next time you angrily proclaim "excuse me!", I won't step off the train because you don't feel like walking around me. You CAN go around me. And, if I do step off the train, and you still shove your way into me like you did today, and tell me I can't stand there (like you did today), I might, instead of swearing at you like i did today, drag you back on the train and give you a lesson in etiquette. I pay my fare. I, along with all the other T customers, have the right to stand wherever I want during the train ride I paid for. You DON'T have the right to invade my personal space and shove me. Paying your fare doesn't give you that right. You DON'T have the right to be rude to me. Paying your fare doesn't give you that right either. I'm making an effort to be as out-of-the-way as possible. Maybe you should make an effort to be a little nicer.
They say Karma's a bitch... Well, Karma has never pushed me off a train... so what does that make you?

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

i've resorted to bragging about a meaningless softball game...

the train seemed a viable option today since i'm being attacked by back spasms...
it all started last night, one night into what's shaping up to be a typical less-than-exciting week.
i've gotten good at feigning excitement. Take for instance the time I saw Craig T Nelson in front of 15 Beacon while walking home. Honestly, who cares... but my enthusiasm and intensity may be just enough to convince people (including myself) that just maybe, i live an exciting life.
The truth is, I don't really... and I don't mind.

Co-ed, hardly competitive softball has become a highlight of my week. At 5'6", 155lbs, I'm the last person you'd expect to see hitting clean-up... unless you know our league. We go, we drink, we have fun and sometimes we even win. You'd understand if you've ever played on a sloped field with 50-foot trees growing in the outfield. if you hit the tree, the ball's in play, and if you're behind the tree trying to play the ball and you gun it toward third but instead hit a branch, expect the runner to keep going... i found out the hard way last night. There is a fence, but speed still kills... if you're fast, it's not that hard to hit an in-the-park homerun. last night, i had a nice collision with the shortstop (which is why i'm hurting) but i stayed in the game and I hit a walk-off single. In the scheme of life, it doesn't matter for crap. It's not going to change the world, it won't pay my bills, hell, i pay to play. But in the time I'm there, I have fun and the few moments after that hit, I kind of felt like a hero... on a very artificial level. I'm not the guy who thinks he's awesome because he can hit a slowly-tossed sphere over a fence into traffic. I am the guy who goes overboard. So when i brag after the fact, it's not that i think i'm great (trust me, i don't), it's just me offering a glimpse into a part of my life i find most exciting and get the most enjoyment from. You're welcome!

Monday, July 7, 2008

personal space: standing up for what's right

(note: one of these days, i'll address in depth, the lack of capital letters in my postings. but for now, just chalk it up to laziness). by choosing to live in the city, people make the conscious decision to sacrifice a certain amount of personal space for location and convenience... a private backyard is replaced by an apartment complex courtyard or a tiny nearby park (the same park suburbanites have been quoted as saying "that's a park?")... a personal garden replaced by a city-owned resident garden... a 1600 sq ft 4 bedroom house subbed out for a 700 sq ft 1 bedroom apartment... the list goes on... and unless you're very well-off, there's a choice to be made.

i'm of the belief that moving to the city shouldn't mean you sacrifce ALL of your personal space.
I don't like strangers touching me. you have to earn the right to touch me. lately, however, especially with an influx of tourists for the holiday weekend, space has gotten a little too tight... apparently, this city's not big enough for the 2-million of us...

fourth of july - we rode our bikes down to catch the fireworks. our plan to head over cambridge-side was thwarted by the mob of people who left little breathing room on the mass ave bridge. that's what we get for waiting until quarter of ten. basically, there was no getting across. so, after locking up our bikes, my fiancee and i wandered down the charles river bikepath, finding a standing spot that seemed comfortably spaced and good enough for viewing...
that was, until 5 minutes later when we were surrounded by people who seemed to have no concept of personal space.

note: I've always contended, if i can feel you brushing up against me, you can feel yourself brushing up against me, so, if you can, back off! also, as is the case with common law, if you get there first and claim your spot, you have ownership rights.


example one: The 6' 3" guy who planted himself next to me was all about cuddling up with his girlfriend, which was fine... what wasn't fine, was on the other side, he seemed content cuddling with me as well. had he stepped back a half-a-foot, which he could have easily done, there would have been "no touching", as one of my friends so aptly puts it. I was there first, leave me to my space - even if it's just an inch, don't brush up against me. i'm not a hormone driven teenager or
a cat in heat. respect that.

example two: july 5th. riding the train, considerably empty for a holiday weekend. so why then, do the two annoying college-aged girls feel the need to stand right on top of where i'm standing? there's plenty of space on the train, and again, i was here first. what's worse, college-aged girl #1 kept rubbing the back of her torso against me. if i can feel you, you can feel me. i was here first. move!

today, on my way to work, despite the numberous available seats on the green line train, i chose to stand up for what's right. I took an extra step to respect the other train riders' personal spaces. I could have sat down uncomfortably close to the other passengers, but i stood instead. why? - i understand i need to make certain sacrifices to live in the city... and if that means standing in order to avoid even coming close to violating someone's personal space, that's a sacrifice i'm willing to make... i just wish other people would be so considerate.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

police escorts on a budget

I was rather confused last night as I ran home. It was just after 11:30pm and as I ran down beacon hill, i noticed a line of police motorcycles turning the corner from charles street. I had seen this before, in fact, rather recently. The last time it turned out to be a bus full of the LA Lakers.
This time, I immediately thought, ooh, who's famous and in town? Dick Cheney's supposed to be around, but that's not until the fourth, it was only the second of July. The mystery grew as I wondered what I'd see turning the corner. To my surprise, two Budget Rent-A-Truck box trucks rolled up beacon street. Why on earth do two budget trucks need a police escort? Dangerous top secret military weapons? Good idea to go undercover with the trucks.... except, the police escort kind of blows your cover.

For the life of me, i can't figure out what was in those trucks. If it was important government stuff, why not use government or military trucks to transport it? As if the country isn't in enough debt, let's spend money on rent-a-trucks... plus, it was Budget. everyone knows the government is never on budget.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

murphy takes a day off

mother nature strikes again... and this time, i was prepared. Lucky for me, Murphy (the one from murphy's law) appears to have taken a day off. Rumor has it, he's been on a weeklong bender. It started innocently enough - a drink with his friend Darwin, but, as Murphy would have it, things went downhill quickly... he somehow wound up naked in a back alley after stumbling into an illegal gambling parlor and proceeding to bet away all of his worldly posessions. just when things looked to be at their worst, he... well, to make a long story short, let's just say, if anything can go wrong, it will and it did... but, i digress.

After a nice long morning skate through the city (in the sunshine), my legs were a little fatigued and I opted to take the T. As I was leaving, I threw open the curtains in the apartment, as has become customary. I immediately noticed Brookline was in the middle of an intense downpour. My unsuccessful search for an umbrella did land me in front of my rain jacket. So, I suited up and headed out. The rain diminished as I walked to the train, all but stopping by the time I arrived on the platform. But, I wasn't ready to give up hope. upon arriving at government center, i stepped out and : DOWNPOURS! as the front entrance clogged up by people who were afraid the rain would melt them, i reached for my rain jacket, weaved through the exit and sauntered out into the rain, and over to bulfinch place.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

why'd the idiot cross the road?

lately on my rides in (including today), i have become particularly annoyed with the ambicrossing pedestrians. they cross when the light is red, they cross when the light is green, regardless of whether traffic is coming.

now don't get me wrong, i'm a big fan of running red lights on my bike and jaywalking when i'm on foot (or blade), but i do so with regard for others. i acknowledge in those situations, i do NOT have the right of way, and thus, i yield until i can make it across safely without causing an inconvenience to any oncoming traffic.

The point is, if we all played fair, i wouldn't be nearly as angry.

today, it was a family of meatballs that strolled out into the middle of mass ave at boylston. the mom - pushing a baby carriage - left me to wonder where the closest trailer park is located. with no regard for anyone else, they sauntered across as traffic came to a hault. As much as i'd like to see them get run over, with mandatory massachusetts insurance, I end up paying for them to recover.

As I continue my ride down boylston, there are people jaywalking and those pulling my favorite move, deciding to cross in front of traffic the instant the light turns green.
You just had 30 seconds and you hesitated, now wait another 30 seconds!

The previous rant has no conclusion other than "if you aren't going to obey traffic laws, at least proceed with caution and respect the fact that other people do follow the rules."

no funny metaphor, no bad puns, no terrible jokes. i don't have time for any of them since i'm running late today... i was busy stopping every 5 seconds so i didn't run over people who weren't even supposed to be in the roadway in the first place.

Monday, June 30, 2008

faster than a speeding car...in traffic of course..

I cycled down the middle lane of boylston street today. Now, if this seems dangerous, that's because it probably is.
but today, no cars seemed to be able to keep up with me. no one honked, no one even got close enough to consider honking. the cars were like lightning and i was like a small car in a city of tall buildings.... (the lightning could not strike me). i've been at work for a half hour... already, i'm ready to head home.

Friday, June 27, 2008

please pass the oj and mayo

I played basketball this afternoon before work, so instead of writing about some wild event on the way to work, i've decided to offer my insight on yesterday's NBA draft. Everyone's talking about out. I turned on ESPN this morning and they were talking about some monster trades. So, here's my take: I have absolutely no idea what's going on. I continue to prove both on and off the court - Basketball is not my sport.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

the happier side of danger

Apparently scientists found some sort of "adventure gene" today. I found it a long time ago. How else would you explain rollerblading down the middle of city streets (as if biking wasn't dangerous enough)... not to mention, this blog = dangerous! Okay, maybe not. but yeah, each morning i decide to set out on the street, it's a complete blackout. Danger makes you forget about all the stresses that truly don't matter. So, for about a half hour each day, the only stress involves worrying about getting hit by a car... which is scary - but not nearly as scary as having to wake up every morning to go to work until you're 85.

Update: More people die from work-related accidents than from rollerblading to work.
That's a fact. whether it's job that's physically dangerous or one that involves enough stress to give you a heart attack, it still takes more lives per year than rollerblading probably ever has.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Now back to the show

I was going to write something today but i got sidetracked.
tomorrow (or the day after) on the blog: my feelings on fat people - a runner's perspective.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

rain on this parade

some bad news for the blog, there will be no entry today. I will instead be using the time I normally use to write - hanging out at the parade. it's tough working @ government center.
UBUNTU!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

the bus driver was a local guy

as i set out on my run home tonight, i hustled over beacon hill - only to see a brush hill tour bus being driven with a police escort. That means there's definitely someone famous on board. On any given day it could have been a group of foreign dignitaries or any other group of the utmost importance. Today though, I knew. As the first police motorcycle passed, I began to make my move. I headed out into the road - loosening my thumbs as I jogged. The second bike went by and there was only pavement and two yellow lines between me and the bus. I raised my arms, cocked my thumbs and tipped them into the downward position. The symbol of pride for my city did not go unnoticed. The bus driver didn't give any "angry get out of the way" honks, rather, he offered a "i see you buddy and I know you know who I'm driving and I'm rooting for the celtics and if I have the chance, I'm crashing this bus full of Lakers" series of honks. I held my position as the bus rolled up the hill - hoping someone on the other side of those tinted windows was looking out the window, watching and remembering they don't stand a chance here in Boston.

back on track

Took yesterday off, but finally I'm back on days.
my sleep schedule is screwed up a bit, but I'm back on track - which is why i took the train this morning... that and because every weatherperson in town said it was going to rain all week. it was nice out this morning... nothing like the torrential downpours and massive lightning storms we saw last night DURING my softball game. Ump didn't want to call it though... apparently, with the slumping economy, he needed the $50 or so he gets paid to get yelled at for making bad calls. Worst call of all: letting people play in a severe storm... But, it is a hospital league... and there were plenty of doctors and nurses there... many of them work in the Intensive care unit at children's hospital... So, if someone did get struck by lightning, my guess is the survival rate would be high... Also, for our team's record-sake, it's a good thing the game didn't get called.. We pulled off an exciting comeback in the bottom of the last (seventh) inning!

Friday, June 13, 2008

something spooky?

it's been a long week working late. tonight i walked part of the way home. tomorrow's the big move, so i didn't want to run and exhaust myself. I took the t the rest of the way.
friday the thirteenth had nothing to offer. no black cats, no ladders, just a bunch of annoyingly drunk people on the T... which is not bad luck, it's just bad etiquette...

Thursday, June 12, 2008

ugh

i think i'm going to be sick... (see yesterday's blog post)

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Wilford Brimley, where are you?

No, the post is not about quaker oats...

Every year, thousands of obese diabetes-proned children and adults decend on city hall... and they do so for a dangerously good cause... the largest all-you-can-eat ice cream event in the country... It's called The Scooper Bowl. All the proceeds go to cancer research through the Jimmy Fund... but do they?

I contend the Jimmy Fund's neighbor - Joslin, is in on it too.
This event appears to thumb its nose at the clinic... a binge that almost guarantees you get diabetes - with no money going toward the diabetes clinic.... but in fact, look deeper.

The Joslin Diabetes Clinic stands a stone's throw away from Dana Farber... which is where a large amount of Jimmy's funds go. You know Joslin is looking when the Brinks truck rolls up with several bags of cash - all being carried into the building next door... Yet, no sense of jealousy - not even when the diabetes (scooper) bowl delivers a huge check each year to cancer patients.

The secret might be hidden in a youtube remix video... Wilford Brimley's in on it and somehow, and so is Falco. Don't believe me? Check this out : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s4LyaNgzy6U

What you may or may not have realized watching the video, the sugar and fat binge at the scooper bowl sends dozens and dozens of people every year into diabetic shock... But where do those "victims" go? You guessed it - Joslin Diabetes Clinic. Patients mean money. Money means research. Research means MORE MONEY!!!

With that said, tomorrow I plan to extend my support to both Cancer and Diabetes Research...
See you at the Scooper Bowl and see you at Joslin!!!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Mom said never talk to strangers

Words to live by... Words most of us are taught at a very young age... Never talk to strangers! Mom and dad obviously had a good reason for teaching this to us... just like they had a good reason for teaching us how to walk, talk and pee standing up. It's stuff that becomes useful later on in life... like when we're on the T. As far as I'm aware, there's an unwritten rule stemming from what our parents taught us. It states: Don't talk to strangers ON THE T.

Having commuted by T for a few years, I've not only observed this to be true, but I also choose to abide by it. Rule of thumb, if you're nervous about it, headphones in definitely means no one bothers you.

On a blisteringly hot day, after standing out in the beating sun for 10 minutes, or standing in a steamy underground subway station with no a/c, setting foot on the train feels like you've entered some sort of Mecca (not the one in Saudi Arabia, as I imagine it's fiercely hot there). The cool air conditioning hitting your face, you forget the pain of standing and sweating that was with you just minutes before.

Apparently that's enough for people to forget about rules they were raised on.
I encountered 3 - yes, 3 people who decided to engage total strangers in conversation.
One - across from me, as i rummaged through my bag, searching for my Ipod, very excitedly exclaimed something about hand lotion... You have hand lotion? My hands dry...
Wait, seriously?
Where you from, where you work? how you like here?
In case you couldn't guess, this guy was the stereotypical friendly Asian man.
A retired construction worker/vietnam vet sitting two seats from me joined the conversation...
I know this because he offered it up freely.

Fast forward to the ride home - creepy 40ish man hitting on a couple of young girls, possibly underage (not that it should matter since he shouldn't be talking in the first place). He complimented them so much, I think it scared them off the train. He proceeded to bother the guy with a Rubik cube and then an older woman who looks like she had consumed one too many mint juleps. He hit on her and eventually they were talking politics... I can barely talk politics with people I like without wanting to kill them. I couldn't imagine doing it with strangers. Someone would wind up dead. The entire time I'm remembering what my mother once taught me. It got to the point where I almost had to start gasping for air. Lucky for me, my stop came just in time. I rushed to the exit without saying a word.
I'm home, safe and sound. But I know, somewhere out there, there are people talking to strangers.

Friday, June 6, 2008

smoking with shorts

Most of the time, I'm a health nut. I've been known to binge from time to time, but haven't we all?
When I do choose to run the bender, something I'll never do is order a Big Mac, large fry and a Diet Coke or a buffalo chicken sandwich, cup of New England Clam chowder and swap the fries for a side salad... oh, and a slice of cheesecake for desert...

You're fighting yourself when you do this. It completely defeats anything you're trying to accomplish. And, your lack of confidence in general becomes apparent in the fact you don't have the confidence to stick with one concept. Healthy? or Not Healthy? Pick One!!!

Observe: a guy today walking near Cambridge street. I'm trailing him, eating my lunch - a protein bar, protein drink and a banana. That's a healthy lunch. This guy has a healthy lunch too. I immediately notice the Whole Foods bag. I can't make out exactly what everything is, but it looks very green. I couldn't get a clean look though because he was blowing cigarette smoke in my face. No heart disease, just lung cancer. Good luck with that.

Without even looking in the bag, there was a clear giveaway. The dude was sporting a pair of
cargo shorts accompanied by... a hooded sweatshirt. Short pants, long sleeves, hood.
Is he Cold or Not? Come to think of it, it doesn't matter... Dude's not going to be allowed out of his hospital gown after he's diagnosed with Lung Cancer.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Jury Duty and The Angry Field Trip Chaperone

Almost everyone I know hates jury duty. Although, I do know one person who actually got upset when she was dismissed. I never understood what the draw was with that one... Perhaps she was excited about the possibility of a juror field trip. In case you don't know, sometimes jurors are allowed to leave the "box". A charter bus drives to the scene of the crime so they can visualize what may or may not have happened. A police officer gets to play chaperone - escorting the bus - sometimes on a motorcycle, sometimes in a car. I have no evidence to back this up, but I want to believe someone packs a bunch of bag lunches so the jurors can have a picnic while they're out.

Around 9:25 this morning, I spotted four buses lined up outside Suffolk Superior (on cambridge street). I always get excited when i see the buses because i think "FUN, GRUESOME GROWN-UP FIELD TRIP!!!" In front - a lone chaperone sat in his cruiser... so, either one really big jury was heading out or a few troopers were running a bit late for the other juries.

As I crossed Cambridge Street, seemingly out of nowhere, a loud voice penetrated the normal buzz of traffic, beeping horns and general city fodder. A voice blared over some sort of speaker or megaphone - it was the state trooper. He was yelling at a motorcyclist from inside his cruiser. The biker had stopped in the middle of the crosswalk and from what I could make out, he had approached the intersection a little too quickly. The trooper berated the biker over the loudspeaker, asking if he was trying to kill a pedestrian. This went on for about 20 seconds, several people turning their attention to the situation at that point.

As the light was about to turn green, the trooper threw open his door, stamped out into traffic and started pointing and screaming at the biker, telling him to pull over to the side of the road. As if the embarrassment wasn't enough, the guy was going to wind up with a ticket. As I walked away, I hoped the excited jurors would show up for their field trip in time to distract the angry trooper from writing that ticket.

But, like the motorcyclist, i had been in a hurry to get somewhere (work). So, i didn't have time to stick around and see what happened.

Oh, and by the way, if I ever get to go on a juror field trip, I'm totally sitting in the back of the bus since that's where all the cool kids sit!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Safe and Sound

Security. That's the theme for today.
On my rainy morning run to work, trying to keep my footing through the never ending construction in Kenmore Square, I barely had time to look up and notice the security guard slumped over, leaning against the outside of the Bank of America kiosk. His eyes were closed, head tilted back as he slept on the brick wall pillow. I initially thought, "the guy's sound asleep; it'd be easier to rob the place than to score a ticket to a Bruins game." Side note: I've got season tickets this year. But, after giving it some detailed thought, I reconsidered. I concluded there aren't many things worse than a grumpy man with a gun - not to mention, he's targeting you. It's easy to assume this guy, sound asleep at 8 a.m., isn't a morning person. Past experience reminds me never risk waking a person like that - unless you want to face his/her wrath.
Hopefully, real bank robbers will be smart enough to figure that out and avoid that particular bank/ATM kiosk.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

the cost of more riders

Where will they all fit? A new report says MBTA ridership continues to increase... I'd provide a link to that report, but I haven't quite figured out all the intricacies of blogging yet... Plus, the article blows huge holes in my argument (example:"Revenue collection is up 13 percent, or about $4.4 million")... My initial thought: Great... except... that means the -T- is becoming even more overcrowded with fare-evaders. The green line in particular is already miserably overcrowded (during rush hour)... and I watch as plenty of people get on without paying. As it stands, I can barely find a spot to squeeze into on the train... The Addition of more fare-evading riders is sure force at least some paying people to consider alternative options. In turn, the already struggling -T- will actually lose money and slide further into debt... All because of increased ridership!
By the way, I rode my bike to work today.

and by and by the way, here's the article that blows huge holes in my argument
http://news.bostonherald.com/news/regional/general/view/2008_06_03_MBTA_ridership_going_up_again/srvc=home&position=recent

Monday, June 2, 2008

waking up is the hardest part

After spending sunday taking a lot of pictures and walking just more than 12 miles, for some reason i thought it'd be a good idea to rollerblade to work on Monday. Not So! by the 1/4 mile marker, i was ready to call it quits. My skate was a blackout of sorts. All I could think about was "keep going". I didn't have the energy to look around. I eventually finished the 3 + mile journey. Now, I'm contemplating skating home this evening.

Friday, May 30, 2008

two days, no blogs

A recap of the last two days.
yesterday - rollerbladed.
I'm speeding down the right lane on boylston. a driver behind me honks her horn. it's the first time i've been beeped at while on rollerblades. (plenty on bike, but either i'm way worse at biking or people have a different preception of rollerbladers). Anyway, I did what anyone would have. I turned around and offered the "what" shrug. she signaled that i should move over into a parked car or something. I signaled back, pointing to the sky with my left middle finger, indicating she should get an airplane if she doesn't want to sit in boston traffic. I proceeded to leisurely skate past the car slowing down in front of me... and sadly, the woman never caught up.
it's too bad, cuz i had plenty to say as i skated away...

today: biked
no incidents until after i parked my bike and went into basketball city. It was there I got smacked in the nose by a loose basketball while trying to grab a rebound. I bled for a little while.
it eventually stopped. that's all

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

rough road

I thought it was a great idea to rip apart Kenmore square on Saturday of Memorial Day weekend with the Red Sox out of town. No sox traffic, no work week traffic, no students, no problem. The pavers were down there looking ready to go. It seemed like the perfect plan. The only problem: it's wednesday now and the road is still torn to crap. My Bikeride through Kenmore: Traffic coming at you from 3 different directions, no one knows where they're going because the DPW changed the traffic pattern; 3 inch rocks scattered across a rough roadway. It was an obstacle course I didn't feel like dealing with this morning.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

planning for the future

i got a late start this morning because of the late night at work last night. That usually means I have the bike option or the train option (others take too long). Since it's supposed to rain, I T-ed it. Two people on the T and three people in Government Center had umbrellas. They looked rather silly considering the sun was shining. That won't be the case if it rains this afternoon though. Then again, we all know how the meteorologists have been lately here in Boston. Thus, planning for the future could turn out beneficial, but it could also wind up making you look even more silly.

Monday, May 26, 2008

a bandaged theme

today was an interesting variation from the norm. Not only is it a "holiday" (which my profession doesn't believe in), but I'm working what people refer to as "second shift." I decided a long bikeride would be good and relaxing before work, as it is a beautiful day. I failed to take a few things into account.

I ventured into my favorite part of Boston, the not yet overdeveloped waterfront of the Seaport District. There was a couple who lived in Somerville stranded with a flat tire. Closest T stop - probably about a mile. Sucks for them. I stopped and lent them my pump, which was of no use, as the puncture in the guy's tire was large. Unfortunately, I don't carry a patch kit... need to start doing that.

At the end of my ride, I arrived at my gym to shower (it's right near work), i noticed something odd. All the lights were off. Uh oh! CLOSED! But, talk about timing. The G-M was walking in as I locked up my bike. I asked if I could grab a quick shower - he said he didn't mind.

In hindsight, had I not stopped to try and help the flat tire couple, my day would have ended up stinking pretty badly (pun intended).

Friday, May 23, 2008

The tent in city hall plaza

I always feel like I've wasted my time if I go somewhere and the drive takes longer than the time I spend out of the car.
Apparently the folks who spent the last week setting up a tent at city hall plaza don't feel the same way.
The giant party tent took most of the week to set up. They used it for one night, and to my surprise, it was being taken down today.
Kind of a waste, no?

Thursday, May 22, 2008

schizophrenia: hallucinations? or are we missing something?

Today was a T day, my least favorite. There's a guy who often sits at the St. Mary's T stop (C LINE). He lives across the street in a home for elderly homeless (if that makes any sense). He's heavy set, Mediterranean looking, dresses normal, doesn't really stand out and is probably in his 60s or so.
I've seen him holding very animated conversations - in a non-english language. Thus, I can never understand what he's saying. The other problem is, I can't ever see who he's talking to. My guess is he's probably schizophrenic, but maybe I'm just missing something. He's very convincing, always seeming to give whomever or whatever he's talking to plenty of personal space and time to respond to his remarks.
Today, he was enjoying Dunkin Donuts and feeding the sparrows and appeared to get into a yelling fight. It happened just as the train came. I hope they made up after I left.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Purpose

My trip to work often is quite the journey. I tend to use non-automobile methods of transportation.
I've biked.
I've walked.
I've run.
I've taken public transportation.
I've rollerbladed.
In a city like Boston, there's always something to see, so, why not stop a minute to smell the roses? I'll look at the differences in each mode of transportation, how people react to each, and i'll share things that happen along the way...

A short anecdote for today: I suffered my first low-impact rollerblading crash.
It was a young woman on the Boston Common.
She was wearing a Red Sox shirt, that's about all i had time to notice.
I had nowhere to go, got boxed in by a bike.... and boom.
Anyway, she was cool about it, I was going slow.
As I went on my way - I was rather embarrassed.