Monday, September 22, 2008

large group dinners

2 is a couple, 3 is a crowd, and 4 is the max for eating out.

over the last three to four weeks i've eaten far too many large group dinners. group dinners normally start out with 7-8 people, and rapidly turn into a reservation for 20 at 8:30pm. granted, if we were in the suburbs and your nearest claim jumper, buca, or other large group accommodating chain restaurant was nearby then i'd not be writing this post. but we're in sf, and dinner in san francisco wasn't meant to be at a large table with your 20 closest friends (and their friends).

these meals are expensive. why do i feel as though every time i eat with 20+ people, the meal i receive yields about a $25.00 worth, yet i pay $50.00+. not to mention you always get pretty crappy service with larger tables, yet they force charge a whopping 18% gratuity. not to mention it's guaranteed that the effort of each individual whipping out a calculator to tally up each dollar and cent spent on which items they personally consumed is enough to fill an 8hr workday. so we go simple and split the bill. the assertive person at the table whips out their phone, fires up that tip calculator program, and says "$47.00 each". of course nobody has anything but $20's and plastic. this is when those people who were prepared for a large group dinner (hit the ATM beforehand to get cash) end up loaning out a few extra twenties to those who showed up with only cards in hand ready to eat.

there's also a lack of social interaction at these types of meals. restaurants aren't fit to have huge groups of people [exception: chuck e cheese]. so normally many tables need to be pushed together, and you end up with either a long straight table, an 'L' shaped table, or a "U" shaped table. regardless, you still end up eating with 3-4 other people since the rest of the people at the table are within shouting range at best. the worst of this scenario is when the person to your right is engaged in conversation to their right, the person to your left is engaged in conversation to their left, and the person in front of you is talking at someone on either side of themselves.

there you are, sitting at a table with your 20 closest friends paying $50 smackers for a meal that's average at best, and you're all alone. this is the time that you wonder to yourself: we're probably throwing down $1000 tonight for dinner/drinks. what other things could we have done for a cool grand?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

the border

the beautiful town of san francisco is worldly famous for many things: the golden gate bridge, alcatraz island, fog, fisherman's wharf, and of course food. the city of san francisco boasts a possible highest concentration of upper echelon dining experiences in the world. SF has some good eats! heck, the famous review website was founded right here in san francisco.

as a resident of sf (i love saying that) it's more than likely that your regular tuesday dinner will take place at a one-off restaurant. one off restaurants are those places that don't exist anywhere else, the opposite of a chain. the good ones are run by a family, or someone who's been running that same restaurant for 50+ years. there's a deep feeling of authenticity, passion, personality, and love when you eat at the aforementioned restaurants.

few realize that as time passes, the human stomach yearns for that which it once despised. fast food! this weekend i had a taco bell craving, and despite the 8,391 awesome unique restaurants that are only located in the gorgeous city of san francisco, i ran for the border. i feel guilty for doing so, but once in a while ya gotta indulge in the clinically-proven-to-taste-good food that is mass produced and fits the description of the bad guys in fast food nation.

and yes, it was glorious.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Geekin' out sunday night

sometimes you just gotta sit at home and bust out all your laptops/desktops and get some computing done. every true geek knows that it's impossible to have the perfect setup, however we continually pursue the dream of an ideal...

right now i just want a simple remote access setup from desktop win xp pc to laptop mac, for a more greener download pc. a desktop consumes much more electricity than a laptop, and sometimes i have a download that may take 3-4 days. i'd rather have the laptop on for 3-4 days which will download just as efficiently as the desktop, however only use a fraction of the energy.

basically i'm going green, (sorta).

Monday, September 8, 2008

Power Peace

i was cruising down the street in my '04, and i saw tons of folks walking to the park. tons.

so snacks and i cruised down to the local dim sum shop and then meandered over to the park to see what was going down. we were greeted by 60,000 people jammin' to ziggy marley singin' his father's tune 'redemption song'. some people were young, some old. we saw tattoos, dogs, dreads, and beer. a few people were walking on stilts, others were doing the tightrope walk.

san francisco is a great city to live in :)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

hands in your pockets

hands in your pockets

i held my first ‘career’ job back in the 50’s. technically the year was 2003, but the technology, mentality, and furniture was straight outta 1956. the company [carlton forge works] didn’t have a website. when prospective employees google’d the company name, my blog was search result #1 (i’ve since then changed that) because i mentioned the company name in a blog post or two. they barely had computers, let alone an online presence.

I almost choked on my own vomit when they introduced me to the machine I’d be using, a p2 450mhz powered computer with 256mb of ram.  (i had a 1.5ghz computer at home, and we're not talking the newest specs either). i brought my own chair in, it was easily older than my parents and probably made out of wood at some point. i brought in my own mouse, and keyboard.  but i could go on an on about how outdated and backwards my first job out of college was, everyone can to some degree.

there was a man who worked at our company. this man was very well known, and respected throughout the industry –albeit a bit creepy. there were plenty of rumors and stories about him, but really he wasn’t a bad guy. he was from the ‘old school’ and used to always give me shit for having my hands in my pockets. nothing pissed this guy off more. i thought, never has anyone cared that i put my hands in my pockets, but this guy sure had a pet peeve for it. when he first explained the reasoning behind his disgust for pocketed hands he said “in the movies, they always show the dummy walking around with his hands in his pockets” he may have said it more clever than that, as he obviously focused way too much time/attention on other people’s hands and where they were resting them when not in use.

my pants came with pockets, why not use them for more than a wallet and my phone?

the other night i was reminded of this old school mentality, and how things aren’t so similar these days. someone was talking about their workplace, and how they start their day at 7am sharp. everyone shows up at 6:40 or so, to get some coffee, read the paper, and warm up before the day starts. the person explained that there was one coworker in particular who showed up at 6:59 each day, and sometimes ended up pushing over into the 7:01 territory. he kept on about this person’s idiosyncrasies in the daily schedule of their office. at one point, he noted that it wasn’t abnormal to see this guy “hands in pocket whistling dixie” come 7:20. 

i almost blew milk out my nose when he said that. i realized that there’s a whole generation of people who hate hands in pockets. (this person was pretty 'old-school' as well) no wonder clothing of yesteryear was so friggin tight, so people were not able to put their hands in their pockets! pockets were to be used for any nickels you may find on the ground or for pocket watches if you had the luxury of owning one.

i wonder what my generation's pet peeve is? not knowing how to change ringtones? when i'm 60+ yrs old what blatantly normal things will get me all ruffled and result in me telling some whippersnapper that he's doing something wrong continually?

Monday, September 1, 2008

labor day

labor day, the day where everyone who participates in the labor that occurs here in the good ol' us-of-a gets to rest.

well, i rested. i can't say i really do labor on a daily basis -but i do work for a bank and banks believe in holidays.

so how to better enjoy an atypical monday (a monday with great weather that is) here in san francisco, than to hit up the full house houses with some wine and a frisbee! i think i need more mondays off.