If I Had A Nickel...

...for every person in the past two weeks that has told me that they saw Forgetting Sarah Marshall and mentioned "Joe, you are exactly like the guy in that movie!," I'd probably have something like thirty cents.

Who is Sarah Marshall? See, I've forgotten already!


Mundane Monday Musings

Have you ever seen that show "How It's Made" on the Discovery Channel? If not, they basically show how things are made from start to finish, anything from aluminum baseball bats to tubas to clock radios to candy bars. It's not the greatest show ever, but when I'm trying to fall asleep and channel surfing, whenever I come across the show, I usually watch it.

Until now.

Last night they showed how hot dogs are made. Now I've read The Jungle and have friends who refer to dogs as "lips and assholes," but never until last night was I utterly disgusted by the thought of eating hot dogs.

* * * * *

About a month ago, I came across a new singer/songwriter named Justin Nozuka. I gobbled up all his songs on iTunes and found a few B-sides and rarities online. I even told you all about him over three weeks ago.

Last night on Sophie 104.3 I heard his single "After Tonight" and I was excited. Then this morning, on VH1, the video of the same song was aired as part of a "you oughta know" segment.

Jump on board folks...I ain't mad atcha.

* * * * *

Man, did I need that break yesterday. Even though I worked from 5 AM til 11 AM then again from 6 PM til 9 PM, the five hours I spent with my Dad at the Padres-D'Backs game and lunch was AWESOME. Picked up the tickets at "Player's VIP Will Call", got to sit in the shade during a 90+ degree day, had Paul DePodesta sit with us for the first four innings (to which we spoke strictly hardcore scouting, player development, personnel move and front office strategies...yes, I was in heaven), then grubbed on some Cheesecake Factory afterwards.

A perfect day.

* * * * *

I came up empty on my Charger Draft prediction. When Detroit took Cherilus at #17, draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. panned the picked on ESPN, saying that pick was a reach and that "Cherilus would have lasted about 10 more spots." Hmm, Detroit picked at 17...add 10...gives you 27....Chargers drafted what position? Oh yeah, 27!

I thought my Bolts would go O-Line or defensive back and they proved me right on the latter. I was surprised Cason was still around and I'm stoked they got him. He's already a big upgrade over Drayton Florence. My guess of Brandon Flowers going to San Diego was wrong, but he was the very next DB taken after Cason.

I'm super stoked about getting LSU's Hester in the 3rd round.


The Horribly Lying Lawyer/OB-GYN/Whatever

It's 12:14 AM and I've been drinking. And I'm alone. Not good.

I was supposed to go out with a lawyer tonight, remember? The plan was for me to call her to confirm the details on this afternoon, which I did. After the standard "How was your day?" and "Looking forward to dinner tonight!" pleasantries, she told me she wasn't sure if she'd be able to make our date because her best friend was in labor in the hospital. "Oh, are you planning on being in the delivery room when the baby arrives?" to which she answered "no," causing me to become a wee bit puzzled as to why her friend's situation was going to affect our date. It's not like I was planning on taking her to Paris for the entire weekend, for cryin' out loud. She starts mumbling and to be honest, she's a horrible fucking liar so her reasoning for why she needed to be present during the birth was not only incoherent, but totally unbelievable as well. Now I know I don't have my Juris Doctor degree, but unless the administering of epidurals or measuring of cervical dilation is now something they teach at the University of San Diego Law School, this girl was clearly full of shit.

But I heard she was attractive and I am quite desperate, so I am willing to give her the benefit of the doubt, no matter how absurd.

She told me that if I didn't hear from her by 6 PM, I was to assume that our date was still on. I told her I'd rather she call me at 6 o'clock to let me know exactly if we were on or not simply as a courtesy. At this point, I knew the date was almost definitely off, but I still planned my evening around it, just in case God decided not to continue his run of cruel and unusual jokes on me.

Sure enough, Alli McMedicine Woman called exactly at 6 PM and said, "Would you be terribly offended if we postponed our date? I'm still stuck at work," and she then followed up her lame excuse with some incoherent babbling about a friend coming into town tomorrow and that she needed to clean up her house. So now she was canceling the date because a) her friend was in labor, b) She was still stuck at work on a Saturday, and c) a friend was in from out of town. A trifecta!

Now, I always thought one of the first things they taught you to do in law school was to lie. After all, isn't that what being a lawyer is all about? (I kid, I kid.) But this chick must have been absent that day because she absolutely sucked at it. I told her that I wasn't offended and that she should go and enjoy her time with her friends, and that it was nice talking to her. I almost wanted to give her a lesson on how to lie since she clearly could have used it, but I was politeland decided to bite thy tongue. She did, however, seem a bit taken aback that I made no effort to try and reschedule. In fact, she even flat out asked, "do you want to reschedule?" I decided to play along: "Okay, how's your schedule next week?"

She then proceeded to go through her Franklin Covey or DayRunner or Microsoft Outlook or whatever the hell she was pretending to reference and read off every day that she wasn't available. It was apparent she didn't want to meet so I basically cut her off and said "Why don't you call me, when you're available?" She said fine, and I said good night.

I've been flaked on and brushed off before and to be honest, it doesn't bother me the most about this whole situation. What really grinds my gears is that people no longer take pride in their work anymore...not even their lies!


Weak End Post

Not that anyone asked, but here's my pick for the Chargers' first round pick tomorrow:

Gosder Cherilus (OT) or Brandon Flowers (CB)

(I only put this on the record as I've successfully picked San Diego's top draftee the last two years in a row.)

* * * * *

For those of you keeping track, I've worked 25 straight days. Okay, I was "off" on the 10th, but I actually spent it back in Long Beach working at my old course, helping them out with the GM on vacation.

I'm not anticipating another day off until my vacation, which is just 7 loooooooong days away. I'm at a breaking point and this vacation couldn't come at a better time!

* * * * *

I am planning on taking a half day on Sunday...a member of the Padres organization called me and offered me two great seats for the Sunday day game. San Diego. 1:00 baseball. Peavy vs. Webb. Free tickets. How sweet is that?

* * * * *

Another nominee for Quote of the Year:

"I'm thinking about becoming a wet-nurse because I heard breastfeeding burns a lot of calories."
--Amanda Valorosi


"Don't waste my mutha fuckin' time!"

I am Al's inner rage.

* * * * *

So I make it through the grueling hoops of eHarmony's "Guided Communication" with this really super cute girl. She's a nice mix of competitive athlete (former D-I basketball point guard) and perky surfer girl-next-door. She admits to "being a spazz" (not literally, I hope) and having a "goofy personality" and the five things she can't live without are: good music, champagne, avocados, the beach, and Mexican food. Sounds pretty promising, right?

So after the multiple choice questions, swapping Must Haves and Can't Stands (let the record show I think it's the most ridiculous part of the eHarmony matching process), and answering the open-ended questions, we are finally able to communicate with each other.

Picture me...alone in my apartment, starved for love, hoping maybe this is the one. I send her my standard "hey, looks like we made it!," "what brings you to eHarmony?," "can't wait to learn more about you!" initial email to her. Her response (an excerpt):
That is the same question I would pose to you! You don't really seem like the kind of guy that would be on an internet dating service. That means there has to be something wrong...what is it? (Is she serious or joking? Most people follow up writing/typing a sarcastic remark with at least a " : ) " or something. Is she actually mocking me?)

As for me, some friends and I decided to get on here for fun, just kind of see what's going on. I am pretty social person and I go out a lot but the last place I am trying to meet someone is at a bar. I would never think about dating someone within my circle of friends even though they are fab. Basically, just wanted to test it out, see if there was any type of legitimacy to it whatsoever...so far, there is none. (Wait...is that including me or up until me?) I am very hesistant about this whole deal. So, most of the time, I just have fun messing with people. (So you're wasting my time, is what you're saying? This is just some kind of game to you? THERE ARE LIVES AT STAKE HERE, LADY!)
So that happened...

* * * * *

Many of you have emailed, text'd, called me, asking how my date went on last Saturday with Lynn (who I described a week ago as "the self-employed party planner. She loves football, chapstick and trying new restaurants...what's not to like? I'm pretty stoked about this match."

Well, given that I didn't blog about it means I couldn't find anything wrong with the date or girl (yet), even after all my over-analyzing. It was super casual, mid-day coffee date. We both were working, so when we mutually agreed that we would end the date, we both said (in different ways) that we had to get back to work.

She said she had a good time and wanted to go out again. She told me she'd email me this week. No word from her yet...I think I'll drop her a line tonight and pass on my phone number.

* * * * *

Okay, I really appreciate all the help some of you have done for me. Many of you have gone out of your way to help me break my streak/find love/get a fucking life. And as much help as I need and like to receive, it is getting a bit out of hand. I swear to God I have someone trying to match me with someone at least once a day. Here's the set-ups I've gotten over the past week:

Friday night: I get a late night text message from my best friend telling me his friend "wants to have sex with [me]...no strings attached." You can't make this stuff up. (Don't get me wrong, but I just don't roll like that. Then again, the way I have been rolling hasn't done jack shit for me, now has it?)

Tuesday: The head pro at my course tells one of his students about me and after giving her a lesson, he forwards me the text she sent him: "if he's a good guy and u r comfortable with setting a sister up with him, give him my number. :) joe, right? susie"

Today: We had a regional job fair and I was asked to be one of the interviewers. Other department heads from the region were going to be there, in addition to a few recruiters and trainers from the corporate office. One such person from corporate is really cute and I have to admit, I have a crush on her. We've met several times before and there was innocent flirting and banter. Sure enough, she shows up and my GM starts telling her how single I am and that I'm available, leaving me to turn about fifteen shades of red. (Sidebar: Why the fuck does the Regional Vice President, whom I see maybe once a month, ask me "Joe, get a girlfriend yet?" every time he sees me? The first time was kind of funny, but now he's basically patronizing me.)

Today #2: I think Mike the Bartender tried to set me up with his wive's friend, who happens to be recently widowed. In fact, her husband was semi-famous and his tragic death made headlines. Can you say "rebound"?

(Amanda, this post in no way means I don't want to be hooked up with Kendall...you've got pretty good judgement, so I'll go with it.)

* * * * *

Fear not, friendly readers...I have a date lined up again on Saturday night. Another set-up by a friend, apparently this girl could have been a professional dancer (no, not a stripper) but chose to become some kind of lawyer. I just hope she's not some kind of crazy.


Around and Around We Go

I'm bored and I've been thinking. The result was the following idea:

I plan on sending a letter to myself and when I get it, I'm going to write "Return to Sender" on it.

Consider this a warning. If this creates some kind of rift in the space-time continuum, causes a tear in the universal fabric and a vortex swallows the world whole, I take full responsibility.


What I Don't Understand

An excerpt from my list of a million things that I just don't understand:

740. Since when did the knuckle-pound become socially acceptable for fifty-year-old white guys on the golf course instead of the high five? (Also, I'm guilty of knuckle-pounding but I'll also have you know that I'm one of the few people on this green earth who still are proponents of the Top Gun high five.)

741. Women.

742. Hey Biker Dude in my apartment complex...why do you insist on taking up an entire parking spot with your hog? Take a look around the lot...you'll see other bikers share spots or use the smaller not-quite-a-real-parking-spot spots. Do the same. Please.

743. As I'm writing this, AMC (you know, "American Movie Classics") runs a commercial for up-coming programming, which includes "Celtic Pride" today at 11:30 AM. "Celtic Pride"? Really? It makes sense if you consider it a classic piece of shit.

744. The fascination for Crocs.

745. Why are they called Grape Nuts? There are no grapes, there are no nuts.

746. Why am I attracted to a certain married woman and why do I get the sense she's attracted to me?

747. Quantum physics.

748. My own strength.

749. Who the fuck is the miserable piece of shit who removes peoples' laundry from the machines and throws it all over the utility table? The pile of clothes I saw today I know for a fact weren't sitting in the washer more than five minutes after the cycle ended. How much of a hurry are you in and how much of an asshole are you if you can't wait a few more minutes or use one of the other two laundry rooms in our complex?

750. Why do people say "I finally found what I was looking for...it's funny, but it's always the last place you look." Of course it is...it was the last place you looked because you stopped looking after you found it! If you kept looking after you found it, that'd make you retarded.

751. Who the hell cast Mark Holton as "Chubby" in Teen Wolf? He's supposed to be in high school. He was 26 when the movie was filmed. HE LOOKED 40!


"I Have A Boyfriend"

Well, I don't. But I did meet three different women today who told me they had boyfriends within the first five minutes of meeting them. One this morning at the gym, one at the bar at work, and one at my bank. I didn't ask a single one of them if they had boyfriends, nor was I trying to hit on any of them. (Okay, maybe that last part isn't entirely true, but I wasn't trying very hard.) These three women just felt it necessary to not-so-subtly work the existence of their boyfriends into the conversation.

The girl at the gym was on the bike next to me and told me she had just joined the Y last week. I introduced myself and told her I joined back in November. She then tells me that she joined because her boyfriend thinks her ass was getting fat. (For the record, she was not fat. She was insanely hot and her boyfriend was clearly both an idiot and a douche bag. And for the record #2, I told her that her boyfriend was indeed an idiot and that she's looked great. She smiled, thanked me, then proceeded to put her earbuds in and start pedaling away.) The woman at work complimented me on my glasses, saying "I love your glasses. They look cute on you!" I smiled and before I could even thank her, she informs me that her boyfriend used to have a pair like them too before he got laser eye surgery. The teller at my bank must have noticed me playing with my BlackBerry while she was depositing my check and asked me if I liked it. I told her I loved it and there's a reason why they call them "CrackBerries." She, naturally, goes on to tell me that she wants to buy a cell phone for her boyfriend's birthday.

I'm no stranger to the ol' "I have a boyfriend" line. I've become accustom to it and it really doesn't bother me anymore (EDIT: Well, obviously it does bother me since I've dedicated today's blog post about it!) I've gotten it plenty in my day when talking to a girl. Now I don't know this for a fact, but I'm pretty fucking sure at least half of them were lying. Hell, I even had the honor of a girl telling me she had a boyfriend when I asked her out for a second date. Apparently she was dated several people -- no shame in that -- and met some dude, dated him, and was at a stage in the relationship where she felt comfortable enough to call the man her boyfriend...all within the two days it took me to call her after our first date.

Don't get me wrong...my beef isn't entirely with these women. In most social circles, the line "I have a boyfriend" is code for "Screw off, I'm not interested." Hey, I get it. But why do women feel it necessary to tell you they have boyfriends when you're not even remotely making a move on them? Are they just so proud of having boyfriends and so in love that they want to shout it from the rafters and let the whole world know? Or do they feel like every guy -- even if he's not overtly hitting on them -- has some kind of motive, and the existence of a boyfriend, real or not, will keep us horn dogs at bay?

I wonder if these women's boyfriends are walking around telling every woman they meet that they have girlfriends. Somehow, I don't think so. In fact, I GUARANTEE somewhere right now there's a guy out there with a girlfriend. And this guy is hitting on a girl. And this girl will tell him she has a boyfriend.

And even if he's not hitting on her, she'll find a way to work it into the conversation.


Date #2: Obama Drama and No Reach-Around

I hate you, Obama.

Hate is a strong word, I know. I really don't hate Barack, per say. Not at least in the way I actually hate/loathe/fear Hillary. But Obama (and some liquor) ruined my date last night so I hate him for it.

Date #2 of the week (or maybe it's technically just Date #1?) took place at Dave & Buster's. (Her choice, which I thought was a bold, but great idea for a first date. A crowd, some alcohol, good eats, video games...what more can you ask for to break the ice when first meeting someone? I thought it was brilliant and I think I'm gonna steal the idea and use it in the future for first dates as well. But I digress...)

So the date was going awesome. Kristie was even cuter than her picture, we connected well, we were having fun...at a certain point of the date, I'm pretty damn sure you could have seen me grinning ear to ear it was so good. After playing some games for about an hour -- believe it or not, I kicked her ass on Dance Dance Revolution. She claims she hurt her ankle over the weekend while training for a marathon but that's no excuse! Also, this girl was some kind of savant when it came to Skee-Ball. We didn't end up redeeming our tickets at evening's end, but I'm pretty sure she coulda walked out of there with a Fabergé egg if they sold them at the gift shop. That or 263 small stuffed giraffes.) -- Kristie suggested we hit the bar and grab a bite to eat. We ordered the Appetizer Trio, I got a Diet Coke and she, a Mojito. But not before she insisted we each pound down a Jager Bomb. I wasn't going to say no, but I also really didn't want to end up shit-faced in front of a total stranger, so I told her I'd take the shot, but that's it. ("I'll do one!") Her one Mojito turned into two, plus an Apple-tini and a pear cider. Maybe she's trying to up her fruit intake, but she's going about it all the wrong way.

It was near the end of the evening and it seemed like we had run out of stuff to say, as our small talk was just that...small. She noticed on one of the bar flat-screens that the Democrat debate was going on and she asks me who I thought was going to win the election.

I hesitated to answer because I didn't want my political views screw up what I thought was a successful date up to that point, but I decided to play along and take it safe. I didn't tell her who I was voting for, but maybe from my answer she could have deduced my political affiliation. I told her that the huge division between the two Democrat candidates was going to really hurt the Party and whoever eventually emerged on that ticket and that in the end, "the old white guy will win."

Kristie didn't agree nor disagree with me, but answered with "As long as it's not Obama!"

Well, anytime someone is anti-something, it interests me why they are anti- instead of pro-, so I asked why she wasn't an Obama fan.

"The main reason is that he hates Jews." (Earlier in the date, she told me she was Jewish.)

Even as Republican as I am, I just couldn't let her throw around fallacies about the guy, so I told her that I hadn't heard that about Obama and if that was indeed true and public knowledge, his campaign would have been over long ago to which she simply answered with "but he's Muslim!"

Now Adam, correct me if I'm wrong, but Obama's dad was Muslim and Obama is Christian (albeit he goes to a pretty whack Christian church.) I tell Kristie this and add the fact that just because you are a black Muslim, it doesn't exactly make you one of Farrakhan's disciples.

"What's a disciple of Farrakhan?" she asked and before I could give her a lecture about the history of the Nation of Islam, her phone rang (For you keeping track, her ring tone was Mariah Carey's new "Touch My Body.") She apologized, but said she needed to take it then walked off chatting on her cell. She returned a few minutes later and again apologized. Although I was a bit annoyed and didn't like that the date had suddently derailed, I told her I didn't mind and that it was okay. It was at that time when our server placed the check presenter in-between us and thanked us for the night.

Now here's the thing: I (almost) never let my dates pay. I don't even like to let my mom, sister or female friends pay unless they absolutely insist. Whether it's $11 at The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf on a first date, or $110 at a fancy shmancy restaurant on date numero quatro, I always get the check or at least intend to. I just think it's the gentlemanly thing to do so I do it!

Once in a while, though, it's nice when the woman makes a fake reach for the check when the waiter puts it on the table. You know, that sort of half-assed reach where she says, "Oh, let me...," but then you cut her off, grab the check, and say, "No. No. I got it." Well, Kristie didn't do the fake reach, which is fine, but if you're not gonna do the fake reach, then you must at the very least do the fake "thank you," which she didn't either. I mean fuck, I had two potato skins and a soda while this broad drank $3o in booze! Oh well, I figured maybe she was saving the "thank you" for the end of the date. You know, "Thank you for dinner, thank you for a nice time", etc. But again, I was wrong. As I walked her to her car in the parking lot, all I got was a "Good night. Take care." and she was gone...kind of like my desire to ever call her again.

Two dates down, one to go.

I hate you, Obama.


Date Night...or not.

So, as I mentioned yesterday, I have a week full of eHarmony meet-ups, starting with last night. Let me tell you, I had an intense conversation last night with a great woman.

The only problem was that woman was my therapist, Dr. G, and not Megan, Bachelorette #1.

In our last email exchange on eHarmony, Megan sent me her phone number and said "Call me if you want to hang out" to which I responded with "Heck ya. How's coffee on Tuesday night sound? If that sounds good, I'll call you to figure out where." Megan wrote back saying "Tuesday is great...9?" and I said "Okay! Call you then!"

Well, work has been, let's just put it this way: crazier than an asylum and busier than a brothel. We recently had to let go of a few department heads/managers, so everyone has been working harder and longer to pick up the slack. We had a tournament/auction/banquet yesterday, which meant I had to be there to help set up and because of the recent personnel moves, I'd have to be there to see the entire event through. So when 8 PM rolls around (aka Hour Thirteen) and I realize I am far from leaving work, I decide to call Megan and fill her in on my situation and also figure out where we were meeting. Of course, she doesn't pick up (but really, I don't blame her...maybe she's a call-screener like me) so I leave a message telling her that I'm going to be at work for at least another 30 minutes, but that as soon as I can get out of there I'll head home, shower and meet her for our date. I even let her know I can make it the entire way to Solana Beach, no need for us to meet in the middle.

When my BlackBerry showed 8:45 PM and returned phone call, I started panicking. I finally got out of work a few minutes before 9 o'clock. I got home, showered and got ready. Still no missed call. Now what was I to do? Call her? Shit, would I look like John Favreau from Swingers? Then again, how can the date even take place if we never even speak to each other? Screw it, I'll call again, see if it's still on or perhaps reschedule for another day. No answer again. Panic sets in. I left a half-hearted message, telling her sorry that it was so late and maybe we could meet up later in the week.

After I hung up and realized I was all dressed up with nowhere to go, I started to feel like shit. It was the feeling of "Fuck, I love my job too much and it just ruin what could have been a great night" which, after a bit of sulking turned to "Fuck, running late or not, I just got stood up."

It was then that I picked up the red emergency phone and called Dr. G. I told her the situation, my feelings, etc. She had no idea I had dates lined up for the week and told me that it was just one date, that I had two more girls to meet. It was a good 30 minute conversation about women and work.

I'll try to put it behind me but help me God, if my job (and my workaholism) cost me another date, I'm gonna get medieval on someone's ass. We'll see how tonight goes with Kristie, Bachelorette #2.


The Long and Short (Shorts) of It

As much as I'm rooting for LeBron to just go buck wild in the playoffs and single-handedly win the Championship, I think a Lakers-Celtics final could just about be the best thing to happen to the NBA since they abandoned the Stockton nut-huggers.

Not only would it revive the rivalry (if only for one post-season), but I think it's a legit great match-up.

And as much of a Kobe Hater that I am, for crying out loud, give the guy the MVP already. (I'd vote, in order, Kobe-Paul-King James. Sure, Garnett and Duncan will get votes, but the three I previously mentioned are head and shoulders above the rest of the league in terms of Most Valuable.)

* * * * *

Speaking of playoffs, the first round of the NHL playoffs have been awesome. Ovechkin, Crosby and Co., Detroit (again), close games, playoff beards, etc...it's been great, just too bad no one is watching.

* * * * *

As much shit as I've given the eHarmony experience, the last two weeks have been spitting out winners like I've cracked a code on a Vegas slot machine. I've got 14 legit matches in my queue and I've gotten all the way to "open communication" with three of them. In fact, I'm going to meet each of the three women this week:

Tonight -- Megan, the six-foot (!) exotic beauty. I'm not gonna lie...when I saw the match sent to me on my BlackBerry, she looked like a tranny on my 2" screen. Boy, was I relieved when I check my eHarmony account on my laptop. I've never dated anyone like Megan (and by that, I mean a 24-year-old hottie who's profile is just about damn near perfect), so I'm nervous about this one.

Wednesday night -- Kristie, the social worker/5K enthusiast from Chicago. Our exchanges have been pretty good and we've seemed to hit it off, even if only through the power of email.

Saturday afternoon -- Lynn, the self-employed party planner. She loves football, chapstick and trying new restaurants...what's not to like? I'm pretty stoked about this match.

* * * * *

I check out my blog stats every night, just for the sheer interest in finding out how people stumbled onto The Year of Joe, what sites are linking to me and just where my readers are from. I feel like this is one of those corny "chance encounters" in the back of the San Diego Reader, but who is the dedicated The Year of Joe visitor who lives in Lake Mary, Florida? You read my blog everyday and I'm just dying to know who you are!


I Needed That!

Worked long and hard Monday through Saturday, which included a trip to and from Long Beach to help out the company, a meeting with the Regional Director and some drama at work. When yesterday rolled around, I just had to relax and take it off.

10:40 AM: The mimosas start pouring at PB Bar & Grill with Adam, Mike, Linda, Jean, Samantha, Jessica and Gabi. I highly recommend the Sunday brunch out on the patio when it's 86 degrees like it was yesterday.

12:30 PM: Watched the entire coverage of the Masters (which was pretty anti-climactic, given Tiger couldn't get anything started, Snedeker shit the bed all day and Immelman is just kinda boring, but hey, it's still the Masters) at the new Tilted Kilt pub. It's like Hooters meets Ireland. Can't remember how many Newcastles I had, but it was my day off and I didn't care!

5:25 PM: Headed up the block to East Village Tavern + Bowl and played a couple of frames of horrific bowling.

8:00 PM: Took a tour of Mike and Linda's hotel/apartment. Cool and ecclectic, that place is a little San Diego treasure!

9:35 PM: Ended the night at Xavier's Bar, where I was served the largest plate of nachos I've ever seen. (They were shared four-ways, of course...)

Ahhh...the batteries are recharged. Let's do it all again!


Ill Communication

Don't worry, the dating streak is still going.

I was supposed to go out with a girl tonight who, as of yesterday at 8:00 PM, sounded like she wasn't going to live to see 8:05. She told me she had "that thing that's going around"...herpes? Seriously though, I only know two people who are sick (one being in Long Beach) so I really don't know what's "going around." What I do know was that she sounded like she was about to cough up a fucking ovary, forget about a lung. Over the phone, there were a few sentences she just abruptly ended with a sneeze or a cough. There might have even been a snough in there (or is it a "ceeze"?)

I told her I hoped she felt better soon and that I'd give her a call over the weekend to reschedule our first date. She was perplexed, seriously asking why in the world would I want to reschedule. I told her she sounded really sick (hell, I was starting to feel ill just talking to her over the phone) and that she wouldn't have fun, we should get together when she was feeling better.

She insisted that somehow she was going to be better by today (which, in retrospect, was kind of a nice change of pace...usually girls suddenly feel under the weather and cancel on me. This one was actually planning on suddenly getting better!) She said she's never been sick for more than a week and that this was actually Day 7 of her being sick.

Maybe, looking back now, this was a mistake but I again explained to her that I thought it would be best if we waited until maybe the weekend to meet.

That's when Robitussin turned into Robo Bitch: "What are you, some sort of germaphobe? It's not like we're gonna have sex or anything. It's just a cup of coffee."

"No sex? Well, then I see no point in meeting at all," I said in hopes that my sarcasm might ease her anger.

"EXCUSE me? You think I'm some kind of slut or something?"

"Not at all," I shot back. "You are just an inconsiderate bitch who doesn't care if she infects other people with dysentery."

Okay, okay...I didn't say that. But that's what I wanted to say! What I actually said was just the "Not at all" part, to which she responded, "That's what I thought. So what time are we meeting tomorrow?"

It was then when one of the closers at work called me and if someone is calling me at 8:45 PM from work, it can't be good and I consider it an emergency. I tell Typhoid Mary that work is calling and I have to put her on hold for a second. She says "ok" and I take the call.

Turns out it was an emergency, sorta...the guys at work couldn't get the alarm to turn off, so I had to head over to work A.S.A.P. to take care of the situation. I flip the conversation back over to Miss Sniffles but no one's there. Silence.

Maybe she hung up on me, or maybe the fever actually got the best of her while she was on hold. Either way, my evening's wide open.


Breakfast of Champions

I love a good book. As a kid, I owned all the Matt Christopher books and called the Encyclopedia Brown series a favorite of mine. In middle school, it was Dean Koontz novels. High school led me to read a lot of sports non-fiction and classical literature. College years was more sports fiction, New York Times Best-Sellers, and religious and philosophical texts. Now a days, I don't read as much as I would like, but it's mostly popular fiction and various books on management, baseball and philosophy. One book that I missed (regrettably) was "Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs" by Chuck Klosterman. My boy John suggested it to me one day and I recently picked it up a few weeks ago. Last week I cracked the paperback open and wow, it's changed me.

Klosterman is my kind of guy...not only does he rock the thick-framed glasses, but he loves pop culture, is extremely witty and his commentary is hilariously scathing and sharp. The book's various irrelevant subjects include Klosterman's disdain for soccer, the coolness of the uncool Billy Joel, Guns N' Roses tribute bands, how the Sims video game shows "even eternally free people are enslaved by the process of living", the Celtics-Lakers rivalry (the chapter I'm on right now), and how John Cusack has ruined his chance with women. And that's only the first half of the book that I've read.

If you are a pop culture junkie, this collection of essays is a must-read.

* * * * *

Last night, a light on my dash lit up with a little orange glow. It read "MAINT REQ'D". I never took auto shop, I've never stepped in Detroit, Michigan and I darn well can't even change my own oil, so suffice to say, I'm clueless when it comes to cars. What does this cryptic message mean? I can only assume "maintenance required", which means I need to take my baby to a Honda dealer pronto. But if it actually stands for "maintenance requested," well, then it's just a request. A suggestion, really. A suggestion I will not honor. I will drive another 53,000 miles until that orange hue goes out!

* * * * *

How 'bout them Jayhawks? If I was a betting man, I woulda laid the money big on Memphis...then again, my brackets had more Ls than Laverne's sweater collection.

* * * * *

A recent Gallup Poll had me shocked: One in six Democrats would not vote in November if their first choice for president wasn't on the party's ticket. Sure something to be said for standing by your vote and I respect people who don't always tow the party line, but to blatantly just not vote because you are anti-Hillary or anti-Obama speaks volumes of the apathy (and future) of the Democratic Party.


Eat, Pray, Blog

So I was over at my friend Amanda's crib the other day and she was telling me all about a book called "Eat, Pray, Love" which apparently is this great bestseller, Oprah's Book of the Minute club, yada yada yada. Amanda said it truly spoke to her and that a lot of women have read the book and been inspired by it.

What transpired over the weekend could only be considered an "awakening."

I received a slew of eHarmony matches (yes, I'm still a member of the site...I figured the monthly dues were cheap enough to cough over purely for the comedic value of the experience) over the weekend and while sifting through all the profile responses, I noticed two of the women matched with me had "Eat, Pray, Love" as the "last book you read."

Against my better judgement, I decided to go back into my archives of failed eHarmony matches (up to 320 now!!) and re-read what all these women had selected as their latest reading pleasure. Wouldn't you know it, but the Elizabeth Gilbert novel lead the pack an amazing eight times of the 80 profiles I re-read. (For those of you keeping score, a mention of a Harry Potter book came up 6 times, "Water for Elephants" 5 times, and "Something Blue" and "The Time Traveler’s Wife" each got 3 nods. Nicholas Sparks and Dean Koontz were listed as a favorite author multiple times as well.)

Here's a few of the descriptions of the book straight from the profiles:

*"Eat, Pray, Love." It was about a woman on a traveling spiritual/mixed with fun discovery. I liked the descriptions and the info about Italy/India/Indonesia.

*"Eat, Pray, Love." It's about a woman in her early thirties who goes on a path of self-discovery after going through a personal crisis. She sets out to explore three differenct aspects of her nature, set against the backdrop of three differenct cultures: pleasure in Italy, devotion in India, and balance in Bali. I loved it. It was a very candid and inspiring story. I particularily enjoyed her descriptions of the countries,
countries that I haven't been to... yet!

*The last book I read was called Eat, Pray, Love and was mainly about figuring out what makes you happy in life and how to further ones's spiritual life. I really enjoyed this book because I felt I was able to relate to so much of what the author was sharing about her own life.

*I have "Eat, Pray, Love" sitting next to my bed waiting to be picked up, so stay tuned for an update.

*Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia. She goes to Italy to experience pleasure, India to explore
spirituality, and Indonesia to find something she calls balance.

*I'm currently reading a memoir called "Eat Pray Love". I love the time the author takes to induldge her passions. It reminds me to create a balance between my personal and professional life and to follow my dreams.
I think there are four women in this world (or at least on eHarmony): those who's latest book read is "Eat, Pray, Love", those who are obsessed with Harry Potter, those who keep reading over and over and over "The Notebook" and those who say "I don't read much", which I really don't jive on.

The interesting thing about the "Eat, Pray, Love" sampling is that all of them were ones I was (or am) interested in...each of the eight Eaters/Prayers/Lovers I initiated further contact with. Coincidentally, I closed every single Harry Potter reader match before attempting to move onto Step Two of the eHarmony process.

Interesting, no? I'll definitely have to ask two latest two matches what it is about this book.




Remember how pumped I was for the weekend? Well, much like my fantasy baseball roster, I went oh-for the weekend:

Sushi with that broad?

Stood up. Not even a "sorry I never called you back" phone call either!

That great day at work?

Instead of the 1200 expected, about 300 people showed up...quite the disappointment. At least my staff was ready and did great dispite the poor turnout.

The $40 haircut in Little Italy?

Never got around to make the appointment.



Mr. Therapy Man

I really can't wait for this weekend. Sushi manana with a cool chick, a fun (although busy and stressful) day at work on Sunday (and yes, I'll be teaching), and I'm planning on treating myself to a really expensive haircut at one of those straight outta "GoodFellas" barbershops (it is in Little Italy) where they primp and pamper you with a great cut, warm towel on face, shaved with a straight blade, etc. Not only is the place by appointment only, but referral only! How cool is that?!

* * * * *

I recently stumbled across a little hidden gem of a musical artist. His name is Justin Nozuka and he's a 19-year-old Canadian acoustic uber-rocker. His music kicks major ass. He's a mix of Jason Mraz/Ray LaMontagne/Jack Johnson. He even got the approval from John, who I rely heavily on for all my musical choices and opinions.

Check out below "Mr. Therapy Man," one of the songs off his just-released debut album "Holly".

Also listen to "After Tonight," one of those songs you want to dedicate to your loved one...if you don't love this song, something is wrong with you!

* * * * *

And here are my Lyrics of the Week:

Through the water
And through the flames
My baby left me without a trace
She took my money
And left the ring
And she didn’t leave one clue of where she was going to

Oh my baby up and left me alone
She signed goodbye on the letter that she wrote
Oh my baby up and left me now
Mr. Therapy Man, I need to ask you how can I live on

How could she do it
Go break my heart when
She used to be the one crying when we were apart
I gave her all of me,
Gave her my soul
and that was exactly what she stole from me

-"Mr. Therapy Man" by Justin Nozuka


Cardinal sinner

I had the distinguished honor today of talking with a Stanford graduate. At least that's what she'd had you believe...

To me it was more torturous than honorable. This girl mentioned the fact that she went to Stanford 7 times in the half hour we spoke. I counted. That's like once every 4 minutes...I think. I'd be more certain, if I went to Stanford myself, and knew how to divide stuff. They definitely teach them kinda fancy book learnin' things there...but what they clearly don't teach is "tact".

I can recall almost every instance in which she just happened to throw in the fact that she went to Stanford (which, let the record show, I think is a GREAT school and hell, if I graduated from Palo Alto, I'd bring it up too...just not in every other sentence):

1. "No, there were those four years at Stanford." - In response to my question, "Have you lived in San Diego your whole life?"

2. "Yeah, I couldn't get into the Giants or A's when I was up in the Bay while going to Stanford." - In response to my comment that I'd gone to the Padres game early this week.

4. "Can you hold on a sec? My roommate from Stanford is calling. I just want to make sure she made it home okay."

5. "Yeah, she's great. I really love seeing her. Stanford was so much fun with her. She's really brilliant." - In response to my questioning, "Did she make it home okay?"

There were two or three others just like that. I'm not kidding!