Tuesday, December 28, 2004
Leaving On A Jet Plane Back to New York City
So my 8 day visit back home to my 'rents place in Anchorage, Alaska is coming to an end in a few hours. I have a sweet (NOT) midnight flight from Anchorage to New York City via Salty Mormon City and Newark, New Dirty Jersey. It's been an incredibly relaxing trip. Didn't go out; mainly played with the dogs. Like Jess said, it really was like a petting zoo in my parents' house. And as she also noticed from the pictures from all week, I only, uh, brought with me two shirts I wore over and over this entire visit. I hadn't been home in two years and I rarely phone my parents as it is. I talk to them maybe...once every two or three months, and generally that occurs because I either need something (see entry two months ago when laptop "died" aka I spilled coffee all over it) or if they need to ask me a question. I came home hoping for a progress or maturing in my relationship with my parents. My relationship with my father has definitely improved starting...around my senior year in college. And it's pretty darn cool now. I shared a beer with him or rather we each had our own beers which we drank while talking to each other. That is pretty cool. Due to health issues my father has been struggling with for about...oh 20 years, I've hardly ever seen him touch a drop of alcohol. That's not to say he never drank when he was younger. He was a jock in high school and then joined the military at the age of 18 and ultimately ended up in Vietnam. Not to generalize, but you don't experience those three lifestyles without doing a wee bit of the drinking. But since I came around, I've rarely seen him drink. Maybe a beer once a year or something. And even then, that beer is of the O'Douls variety (aka non-alcoholic). So imagine my surprise when two days ago, as we were sitting around the living room in the early afternoon when he remarks, "I can understand why people become alcoholics." Finding that statement rather random, I turned to him and asked why. He leans back in his leather ottoman and says, "Because I just had a shot of tequila and all my pain went away." My mother, who is the living embodiment of a moral Judge Dredd, replies, "WHAT?!?!" So my dad and I start talking about liquors. And then, he gets up and goes into the kitchen. I hear him call my name and I walk into the kitchen to see my dad standing at the counter with a fucking treasure trove of premium liquor bottles. He didn't have these 50 or even 90 dollar bottles that are supposed to be "premium." No. He points to his tequila and says, "This is some good shit. Cost me 300 dollars." And he has scotch, cognac, all costing hundreds. He points to one particular cognac still wrapped in its packaging and says, "I won't tell you how much this is, but...when I die, I want everyone at my funeral to take a pull from this bottle. I want it to be a party." He pulls out a cognac bottle and asks, "Want some?" My dad and I then watch some football while sipping cognac. He had listened to me complain earlier about my shitty roommates and with half the cognac left, he lifts the glass to me and says, "Here's to hoping you have a new address" and downs the rest of the drink. That was just a very cool moment for me. As for my mother...She is still infuriatingly annoying as ever...enough to remind me why I don't come home or call home very often. But I love her. Why are moms so annoying? That said, I did what I've been doing for the past 7 years and that is keep my interaction with my mom to a minimum. Anyhoo. It snowed about an additional two inches last night. I would have gone out to take pictures because it was mad pretty outside...but uh, I dislike the cold immensely. So I took some photos from inside the house. This is taken from the kitchen window above the sink where I was washing dishes. Very pretty view: And these are my neighbors across the street: And lastly, of course, some more photos of The Dogs. The funniest thing about Rudy whom I consider "mine," is that he has funny birthmarks on his tongue of all places. When they developed when he was a puppy seven years ago, my parents thought my sister had marked his tongue with a black marker: Rudy and his black spotted tongue. So cute! Brinkley curled up like a cat. Speaking of cats, my parents are getting a cat this week. And this is me (wearing the same clothing...again) cuddling with Annie while watching Monday Night Football: Annie, in a rare moment of not causing havoc, taking a nap Anyhoo. Flight: Delta Air Lines flight 1776 (Non-Stop) Depart: Anchorage, AK (ANC) - Terminal Information Unavailable Tue, Dec 28 at 12:45am Arrive: Salt Lake City, UT (SLC) - TERMINAL UNIT 2 Tue, Dec 28 at 7:31am Flight: Delta Air Lines flight 1022 (Non-Stop) Depart: Salt Lake City, UT (SLC) Tue, Dec 28 at 8:20am Arrive: Newark, NJ (EWR) - TERMINAL B Tue, Dec 28 at 2:39pm See ya'll soon.
Monday, December 27, 2004
iMovie By Matteo
Click here to download my video (Thanks to Apple's iMovie program) of the youngest dog, Annie, tearing into a toy bone. (Quicktime) Thrilling.
Sunday, December 26, 2004
Hope everyone had a nice Christmas. I'm feeling a bit uninspired right now...mainly cause I'm effing lazy. I've only registered for one class for next semester and I just did that last Tuesday. A course with Gary Okihiro which I'm actually kinda pumped about I think. But yea. Uninspired.
Although, my interest has been piqued -- piqued I say -- at this deal from Citibank for a free mini-Ipod:
The only catch is that you have to open a new account with a minimum $2500 deposit. :/ But as some students like me get a fatty check at the start of each semester, I will most likely do this in january when I get my check for the second semester at CU.
I may still buy a 20 gig regular iPod tho. My lack of an iPod has resulted in certain challenges from some people regarding my devotion to the religion of Apple. A normal iPod, a mini iPod, and a new iBook ought to to help me reclaim my legitimacy.
Anyway, I got some nice and useful gifts for Xmas that I've been meaning to buy for myself but had been too cheap to do so...
Although, what I'd really like is some super killer lyrical skills..and possibly flow.
I've been really tired all day. My dad is really funny: He HATES crowds, so whenever he does shopping, be it grocery shopping or otherwise, he likes to get to stores EARLY. And by early, I mean before the sun rises. So he had promised during my visit to get me some necessities like socks and such (Those basic things are effing expensive...I'd rather spend my money on...drinks). But that meant having to get up early. Last night I went to bed around 3 AM. He wakes me up at 9 AM asking me if I'm ready to go.
Anyway, this is me exhausted and effing tired:
I am NOT happy: morning grumpiness
I did get my socks and stuff.
Dog Photo Du Jour
This is the bone of a mammoth I hunted the other day while dog sledding
I made an iMovie quicktime video of Annie ripping this bone to shreds but I can't figure out how to load it up into my ftp Columbia server. If any of ya'll know how to do this, some help would be sincerely appreciated.
Cooking Brought To You By Costco
One of the more enjoyable things about being home for me is finding all the random shit the parents have bought since my absence. I may document it later, but I've noticed a potentially unhealthy number of products from The Sharper Image. But this book I noticed earlier today tops them all: Um, yea. That's "Easy Cooking...The Costco Way Sheesh. Costco...You can't buy just...one toothbrush there. Nope. You have to buy 20 and the package often will give you "one free" on top of that. Muffins are about the size of two fists combined. Peanut butter is sold in gallon drums. Gawd. I love that place. Anyhoo, I imagine the recipes are something like this: 10 gallons of water 5 lbs of sugar 40 Tollhouse chocolate chip cookies 25 lbs. of flour Serves...4 cookies.
More Rodriguez Dogs!
I know, I know. MORE dog pictures! If you don't like 'em...well...bugger off! It's my website. So I bought our dogs a toy for Christmas this year: It's a tongue shaped tug-n-pull dog toy I had some fun playing with it with Rudy: Mine! But he got sick of playing with it sooner than I did: "No more" No worries tho. Annie, the baby of the bunch who always gets in everyone's face, wanted it for reals: GRRRRRR...My hands hurt b. She's a solid 80 lbs of muscle pulling. Good resistance work out And then Brinkley, the elder, wanted in on the fun: Brinkley (right) and Annie face off They finally calm down...except Annie (standing with bone in mouth): More!! And this is Rudy again, my favorite and bestest pal: Groovy dog These are just SOME of the toys that the dogs have access to all day: They are spoiled rotten
Saturday, December 25, 2004
The Rodriguez Dogs
In Related News The funny thing about coming home after a long absence is finding random shit around the 'rents house. One thing I forgot my parents have, for some reason, is a gigantic teddy bear. Gigantorsaurs Teddy Bear.
Artsy Photo Du Jour
(It's been awhile since I've done this...Nick D. I know how much you like them)
Friday, December 24, 2004
I just purchased a lil' present for myself: The Office complete seasons one and two and the Christmas special. I heart this show so much. It's effing brilliant.
Slough Come, friendly bombs, and fall on Slough It isn't fit for humans now, There isn't grass to graze a cow Swarm over, Death! Come, bombs, and blow to smithereens Those air-conditioned, bright canteens, Tinned fruit, tinned meat, tinned milk, tinned beans Tinned minds, tinned breath. Mess up the mess they call a town -- A house for ninety-seven down And once a week for half-a-crown For twenty years, And get that man with double chin Who'll always cheat and always win, Who washes his repulsive skin In women's tears, And smash his desk of polished oak And smash his hands so used to stroke And stop his boring dirty joke And make him yell. But spare the bald young clerks who add The profits of the stinking cad; It's not their fault that they are mad, They've tasted Hell. It's not their fault they do not know The birdsong from the radio, It's not their fault they often go To Maidenhead And talk of sports and makes of cars In various bogus Tudor bars And daren't look up and see the stars But belch instead. In labour-saving homes, with care Their wives frizz out peroxide hair And dry it in synthetic air And paint their nails. Come, friendly bombs, and fall on Slough To get it ready for the plough. The cabbages are coming now; The earth exhales. -- John Betjeman
Thursday, December 23, 2004
Alaska: The Strip Mall Edition
Sure, Alaska and even urbanized Anchorage is more gorgeous than 90 percent of the United States. Speak to anyone who've every taken a trip here on a cruise or whatnot and they'll most likely agree with my sentiment. Even if you are the most indoor and city lover, you'll appreciate Alaska. Yet, despite all that au naturale wilderness goodness with mountains, I would like to now reveal to you....The Strip Malls of Alaska. Update: As Jess pointed out, note how all the cars are SUVs or Trucks. Ah, I can't hate on my home state for too long. Look! Purrrty snow capped mountains:
Throwing It Up On Camera
This video clip is about the most hilarious "omfg" I've seen since the backflip karate guy a couple months back.
MRod Circa 1987
This is the earliest picture of me my parents have in their possession. It was taken in...1987 I believe (give or take a year) when I was around 6 years-old during the Christmas season. That trailer toy was my gift that year in the orphanage. Note my missing teeth...and my groovy outfit. Killer. Corduroy pants, cartoony belt. Yea, I still had my boyish good looks back then.
Wednesday, December 22, 2004
Congrats are in order as the year 2004 grinds to an end. Congrats to me for finishing my first semester of grad school at Columbia University; I just finished my final paper for this semester. Congrats to me for getting my first "A" at Columbia: Booyakasha!. *Nervously awaiting my other grades...* (Thanks to Emily for keeping me sane in the library, Kristina for the the FYI about the printing room and the lady in the library cafe for those free cups of coffee) Congrats to everyone else who are finished with finals, awaiting year-end bonuses, et cetera. But most importantly, congrats to my good friend Kevin Z and his groovy long-term girlfriend for their engagement. I hope we all end up as happy as these two always are. Kevin, I know your Playstation 2 is still broken, but at least she said yes. I've never been to a wedding my entire life, so I best be invited to this one. I didn't eat at Loui's back in Providence with you all those times for nothing. Soon to be married happy couple And while we are on such a happy note...a few more pictures of my awesome and super duper cute dogs: Brinkley sleeping on the dog couch: Yea, the dogs are maddd spoiled Annie: She's the baby of the group at 2-years-old MY dog. Rudy. So perfectly adorable and cuddly! Annie shaking my dad's hand (My parents don't like their pictures being taken) Der? Annie
Um, yea. More pictures of Anchorage, Alaska. To her defense, the weather is really shitty right now: cloudy, cloudy, cloudy. The street my house is located on I think it's safe to assume Anchorage will be having a White Christmas this year Civilization!!! Yay! Chains!
Blazing iBook and Other News
I'm such a dork. My dad bought me a 512 MB RAM memory chip for my two-month old iBook. My laptop is fucking beastly now with 768 MB RAM total. Thanks Dad! Anyway, before I left to come home, I got to hang out with Jess for a couple days which was groovy. We ate at some kick-ass restaurants: That-Korean-Restaurant-With-The-Fountain-And-Piano-In-KTown and Smith & Wollansky's. So. Fucking. Good. K-Town Action: So effing hungrrrry...WHERE'S MY FOOD!!! Jess enjoying her imaginary food I'm sooo full Stomach about to burst...yet must keep eating... White bowls...yea The Aftermath Verdict: TASTY The Next Day: Smith and Wollensky's: I used to live one two blocks away from this steak house and I can't believe I never ate there. So. Fucking. Good. BEEF Dessert! Verdict: TASTY (but not as good as Peter Luger's) Afterwards, we walked over to say hi to my ol' roommate and buddy, Kaizar who was sick with the post-flu. On a side note: Ladies of my website: If you get hot and bothered by Kaizar, let me assure you he is very single and available. If you do not yet have a date for the various holiday parties, contact me to set you up with him. He is single, bathes frequently, and has spending cash. Kaizar showing off his new iPod headphones (See above about spending cash) Kaizar the Terrorist