Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Reactions

The other day, I went through my facebook friends and deleted about 30 of them. These were people who I'd met once, or had not talked to in a year, or were HS friends that added me but never really said hi (so just likely wanted to see my pictures and stalk). Facebook allows for the posting of status messages that all of your friends can view. I went ahead and posted this:

"Benjamin just deleted 30 fb friends...if you can read this, congrats, you made the cut"

Here are some of the responses I got:

From a person who I'd seen the day before "ha ha .. thanks I feel special :) im going to follow your lead."

From a friend in London "savage"

From a friend I talk to once or twice a month "LOL. If they are your FRIENDS, then why did you delete them? I'm confused (but also happy I survived your downsizing efforts)."

From someone who reads my website, that I met once "Hey, we met once and I still made the cut! It's ok, I'll likely get cut in the next round." (my reaction was that she likely would get cut next time)

From a friend in Philly who I email links w/ "yesssssssssssssss....made it."

I also got emails like:

"Ha. I'm so flattered"
"What was the criteria?"
"Hey man! Glad I made the cut. How are things?"

All from people who came out of the no where...weird how that one status message brought out people who I hadn't talked to in 6 months.

Anyway, just thought it was interesting...

Sunday, September 21, 2008

CaliforVacation:

Stupid Narrative About What I Did:

About a month ago, I was talking to my friend Diana when she mentioned that she was going to be in LA for a few days to some touristy crap, alone. She casually asked if I wanted to join her and she was likely surprised by my reaction. I’d been to LA once, when I was younger (maybe 12), for maybe 2 days as my family drove from Sandy Eggo up to San Fran. But I’d never really been to LA, done the LA thing. Thus, I jumped on the invitation.

Fast forward 2 weeks, and I’m on a plane to LA, renting a car (with GPS, AMAZING), and crashing at my cousin Daniel’s apartment. Though I got to his place around 1am Western, we walked around Sunset strip, he showed me where River Phoenix died and a few other legendary clubs, and we had a few beers.

At 9am in the morning I took off towards Paradise Cove, Malibu, to meet my friend Lindsey, who’s been living in LA for a year (I think she’s moving back in a few weeks). We caught up, sat on the beach, watched some surfers, and enjoyed a pretty perfect day. She took me to the shops of Malibu, acting like my tour guide, and I showed her how to be 28 going on 15, namely going on the swings and getting a chocolate milkshake. I left Lindsey around 3 to go pick up Diana at LAX. I wasn’t really sure of our itinerary, but the second Diana got off of the plan, she was mentioned Universal Studios, and I couldn’t really think of a better way to act like a 10 year old (not sure why I’m on such an “Act like a 15 kid” kick, but it’s been fun so far). We went to Scott’s apartment (one of Daniella and David’s friends), where we would be staying for the next few days. Scott has an amazing apartment 3 blocks from the beach, and 8 blocks from the pier in Santa Monica. It is very nice, new building, with an extra room (though the mattress is an air mattress). We showered and rested and headed out for dinner on the 3rd St promenade and headed to the Santa Monica Pier. While Scott met up w/some friends to watch Casablanca on the pier, Diana and I explored the area. We played some games, I won a stuffed animal by hitting gophers on the head really fast (acting like a 15 year old again), and I got Diana her first ever Funnel Cake (what rock did she climb out from under?). Exhausted after a long day at the beach, jet lagged, running around, I was happy to head back to Scott’s apartment around 10, ready to crash. Unfortunately, Scott had other ideas and when we got back, there were 15 people from his triathlon team there, drinking and socializing. Bedtime took place around 1.

The plan for day 2 was Universal Studios. We got there around 11, and just had a blast. The “studio tour” was a necessary evil (an hour long and an hour too long) but the rest of it was great. Shrek 3d, The Simpsons, The Mummy, an animal show, a Waterworld Show, a Jurassic Park ride, and a House of Horrors. We were exhausted and “Miss I never take a nap” took a fell asleep during the ride home. Scott, our awesome host, took Diana and I to a really good burger place for dinner and Tammy and Tom and Lindsey met us afterwards for drinks and Mohitos.

Sunday, or super tourist day number 2 consisted of hitting Hollywood Boulevard, The Kodak Theater, the Hollywood sign, Beverly Hills, Rodeo Drive, and Santa Monica Boulevard. When we got back to Santa Monica we walked along the beach down to Venice and saw very crazy people and a random drum circle that apparently forms every Sunday afternoon. We went back to Scotts, I packed, and headed to the Airport. Diana wasn’t leaving until Monday, so she stayed at Scott’s another night. At the airport I hung out w/Cheryl for a few hours (she was randomly on my red eye home), before popping an Ambien, blinking, and going right to work.

Anyway, here are the pictures.

And Here is a Video of the Drum Circle:




Here are some other one-hit items that are not really part of the narrative of my trip:

I’m a big breakfast person and Diana usually doesn’t eat breakfast. This really screwed up our eating timing, since we weren’t ever hungry at the same time. I never realized how important the eating habits of the person you were with were, likely because it’s never been an issue before.

Everyone I know has complained about LAX, but I had no problems getting there, or parking, or leaving, or in security, or finding my way, or anything.

I left 3 shirts at Scott’s apartment hanging in his closet. I hope he remembers to bring the back to NJ during the high holidays so I can pick them up.

Why is the gate which my plane is at always the farthest walk?

My 10 year high school reunion is looking like it’s going to be an 11.5 year reunion. Our class president lives in Arizona and kept asking people if they heard anything (um, hello, you’re supposed to organize this thing). Not that I’m in any rush to see more than 4 of those people.

I have been considering going back to school for an MBA. Of course I wouldn’t even consider giving up my paycheck, so that would mean weekends, and Fridays… not that I have anything else to do. GMAT time!

Buildings and streets are no longer moving and swaying. That's good. For a while, I was worried I'd be dealing w/it for the rest of my life!

I reread some of the glossary while updating it last week, and have realized that the whole “give everyone a nickname” idea has backfired….considering I don’t remember who a few of them from 4-5 years ago are.

Why isn’t “Twas” in the MS Word dictionary?

Wearing a headset is a good non verbal sign if someone doesn’t want to talk to you or not. If someone wants to be social, they’ll just take the ear pieces out.

I did a day trip to AC w/some co workers. Actually it was a 14 hour trip. We took the 6pm bus and got on the 6am bus back to the city. I slept for 2 hours on the bus (so uncomfortable) and 3 hours when I got home before heading to brunch w/family for Dad's bday. I lost about $70 but was much more excited about getting comped free breakfast (at 4am) and getting 15 decks of new cards (well, used, but new to me).

"Tanks" and "Yanks" are spelled the same on my phone since "T" and "Y" share a number on my full keyboard. (tankers and yankees is the same too). When I type that I'm at the Tanks game, or watching the Tankers play, I usually just leave it. Seems very fitting.

If someone said “Sarah Palin will be President for 8 years, unless we cut off your left arm,” I’d be like “just give me something to bite down on!” This is not an understatement. In reality, there are wars worth dying for, and if someone getting killed would keep her out of the White House, I'd consider the job. (I'm not ok w/her as VP b/c McCain will not be strong enough or in control enough and she and her policies will filter in as she sees fit, similar to Cheney and Bush). I was actually ok w/McCain before hand...partnered w/anyone of his "R" competitors, b/c at least they were smart.

Why do waiters and waitresses insist on asking what type of water I would like? I don't know anyone who doesn't want tap water. If someone doesn't want tap water, they'll ask for it. To me, asking what type of water I want is as random as the waiter picking a random appetizer on the menu and asking me if I want it.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Who's Reading??

For some time, I've been collecting free data on who's reading this website. Anyone can see the stats that are compiling, if you click the stats on the right. It's getting around 15 unique readers a day, most of course in the NYC area. However, its really interesting to see what Google searches have brought random people to my site. I've compiled a list of a few searches out of my last 100 viewers, and what parts of the site they have ended up at. It's really interesting.

Someone from Kiev, Ukrane searched "Wedding RU" and got THIS POST about the Rutgers/Louisville football game and a wedding I went to in FL that week.

Someone in Lithuania searched "igo lithuania buildings" and was directed to MY TRIP to the Batics (igo as in "Here I go")

Someone from Australia was searching "riga black liquor balzams history" and was directed to the same page as the previous person.

A THIRD person in London was directed to the SAME PAGE because they searched "picking up girls in latvia" My site was the #1 choice for info on that :)!

A 4th person from Lithuania was directed there for typing "lithuania maps for igo 06"

Someone in Chicago was directed to my STRIP CLUB RULES by typing "strip club where strippers use dildo." Apparently I'm the 2nd most useful link for that search!

Someone in Newton, Mass was directed to the same post by typing "montreal strip club rules."

A 3rd person from Ontario searched "negotiate stripper" and was brought to my rules.

Someone from Kitchener, Ontario was directed to my BAD EYESIGHT posting by searching "how did genes for bad eyesight survive." I was the #1 choice, which makes me so happy!

Someone in Oklahoma City typed in "Lehman Doom Blogspot" and was directed to my most recent post below.

Someone from BUDAPEST, Hungary typed "reasons-tonight" into Google and got my Top 10 Reasons Why Tonight Sucked posting.

I posted a link on "pixie dust" that helps regrow body parts, and 2 people found my site by searching "regrowth pixie dust snopes." May have been the same person, but came from 2 different places.

The funniest one might be the person in Barrie, Ontario who typed "3 times in the morning and she still wants to go again" into a search engine called alot.com and was directed to my Israeli Morning QB posting. I have a feeling that wasn't what he/she was looking for.

Additionally, I've put up advertising and a search bar on the page. 2 people out of about 1,000 readers have clicked, so I've accrued about $1.05. It may be a failed experiment and may disappear shortly.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Financial Mess

I'm watching football at 9pm tonight and get this text message "Are you watching what's going on?" from a former coworker who's now at Citi. I write back quickly and turn on CNN, figuring we attacked some country, or some building just collapsed. Can't find anything when someone else writes me "Lehman is going to file, BofA is buying Merrill, AIG is getting downgraded and WAMU is prob next."

These are just some of the messages I've recieved since (I will continue to update through the day w/what I recieve):

"Lehman left at the alter while Merrill is getting eloped." - Coworker

"My puts are going to be up huge" (That's what she said) - Former Coworker

"It's so scary. My freinds are clearing their desks now." - Friend at a bank

"I can't imagine what tomorrow will be like at work :(." - Finance Friend at a bank

"I am in SHOCK."

"I'm in tears right now over this." - Buyside Friend who should be fine

"I'm totally glued to CNBC now, its disgusting! Tears are falling down my face" - Friend at a distressed fund

"I can't wait to open an account at Merrill of America Brothers and Bear Morgan Mutual" - Me

"I AM IN THE OFFICE IF ANYONE NEEDS ANYTHING" - My UBS sales coverage (drove to Stanford from UWS)

"I can not believe how everything is unraveling."

"I kind of whish I was at the office now to talk with more people about this, though I'm glad I'm not at ML or Leh's office right now, they are interviewing people as they walk out."

"Leaving for the day, it's been a long one. XXXXX will be trading lehman bonds for the next few hours. See you all bright and early at 4am" - 8:30pm on Sunday from CS Trader

"I work right next door to Lehman. It's a mob scene out there. Reporters all over the street approaching people as they leave the building with their stuff" - Friend

"SALES, I'D SEND OUT CASH RUNS BUT THEY ARE USELESS RIGHT NOW, TELL ME WHAT U NEED AND I CAN GET U LEVELS BUT RUNS JUST TOO VOLATILE AT MOMENT" (runs are lists of trading levels for loans) - Bank Trader

Directly Impacted Quotes:

"It has been a complete pleasure working with you all over my nine plus years at Lehman Brothers. I will be in touch. In the meantime, please feel free to contact me at the following for now..." - 9pm Sunday from a Lehman High Yield analyst

"Here is my contact info" - 8pm Sunday from Lehman Analyst

"I WOULD LIKE TO THANK THE CLIENTS OF LEHMAN BROTHERS AS WELL ASMY FELLOW EMPLOYEES FOR MAKING THESE LAST 8 YEARS HERE TRULY MEMORABLE. IT HAS BEEN AN HONOR WORKING WITH ALL OF YOU." - Lehman Trader

"THANKING YOU ALL FOR SEVEN GREAT YEARS!PROUD OF OUR PEOPLE!" - Lehman Sales Coverage

"I WANT TO THANK ALL OF YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT OVER THE YEARS. ITS BEEN GREAT WORKING WITH YOU. PLEASE STAY IN TOUCH." - Salesman at Lehman

"Wish I had been laid off. Would have at least gotten severance" - Friend at Lehman

"Prob won't play this season...don't have a job and I suck at life..." - Volleyball friend at Lehman

"This is the mail system at host njrelay8.lehman.com.
I'm sorry to have to inform you that your message could not be delivered to one or more recipients. It's attached below.
For further assistance, please send mail to postmaster.
If you do so, please include this problem report. You can delete your own text from the attached returned message." - Email response to volleyball friend if he was going to make it tonight

"Prob just sulk for a couple of days and get my resume together...then hit the job market w a million others. I'm prob not going to do volleyball anymore, will be moving home soon." - Volleyball friend at Lehman

Convo on why things are failing:

Dan: so what happened to make two mortgage giants and three of the biggest banks in the world fail in the matter of a week?
Ben: They are all immoral people and it caught up to them
Ben: They make bad deals for the fees, hoping those deals survive
Ben: All banks are houses of cards built on trust and confidence
Ben: If everyone stops doing business with the bank becacuse they are worried about the banks viability, they actually cause it to fail... Self fulfilling prophesy.
Ben: This is similar to how currency is no longer backed by gold and only backed by the trust in the system that everyone will assign a value to the currency.
Ben: Complicated enough?
Dan: That more or less makes sense. But wouldn't the big banks with the most trust and confidence be the last to fail? Have tons of smaller banks already failed?
Ben: 15 banks have failed. Size is important, but so is a strong balance sheet. A bank with out much morgage exposure and with lots of cash is viewed as strong.... No matter its size...
Ben: Of course a bank that does not use its cash will not make as much in terms of profitability, but it is stronger than one that lends more than it has.
Dan: Is it a problem that these big banks fail or will the smaller/still solvent ones just move in and fill up the market?
Ben: Our whole economy is built on lending.... So any bank failing will shrink the economy.
Ben: Banks make loans to businesses, for cars, for homes, for credit cards, for acquisitions, for anything pretty much. Its all connected and causes a huge unwind of the leverage in the system. If banks stop lending, I can't buy land, or borrow to build a house, and the construction company can't buy equipment, builder can't buy supplies, and equipment manufacturer can't buy raw materials to make construction equipment and the mining company can't buy equipment to build new mines to ship raw materials to equipment manufacturer for sale to construction company to build my house. The way our system works is that you borrow money, buy something, the seller deposits it back in the bank where it is lent again, thus $1 buys $10 worth of goods. If leverage is removed from the system, the economy shrinks substantially.
Ben: Thus, the fed will cut rates and lend the banks cheep money in order to keep the economy rolling and keep banks lending.
Dan: but the problem with permanently low interest rates is that then everyone wants to borrow and no one wants to save, so eventually the supply of money dries up and interest rates are pushed up again?
Ben: Exactly, and the value of our dollar drops... And people stop giving the gov money to lend out (people stop buying bonds bec rates are low and dollar is falling). House of cards, house of cards.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Cute Convo

My friend sent me this convo between two 15 year olds. So cute, totally made me blush reading it. . . .


Girl: that’s not good.. you gotta girlfriend?
Boy: nah, she just moved and we said goodbye so I’ll move on.
It’ll be hard.
Girl: awww, im sorry about that.
Boy: but I’ll manage.
Its ok.
Girl: you already like soGirlone?
Boy: maybe… Idk
Girl: who are you thinking?
Boy: ? Y u wanna know?

??
???
????
????
??????
???????
..
??

Girl: yess I do. Who is it?
Boy: y u wanna know?
Girl: yep. Who is it?
Boy: Y?
Girl: cuz im asking.
Boy: do u wanna know?
Girl: cuz im asking.
Boy: oh well that surely gives Girl a good reason.
Girl: cuz we’re friends. :]
Haha, that’s an amazing reason right there.
Are you gunna tell me or what? Lol
Boy: maybe?
Girl: what’s stopping you?
Boy: idk?
Guess.
Girl: you know you wanna lol
Boy:
Girl: hmm.. gim me a hint.
Boy: guess ...
Just guess …
Girl: I don’t know though.
Give meone hint first. Lol.
Boy: just yell out some name.
Ill say warm or cold.
Girl: meggers.
Haley.
Zoey.
Honestly, I have no idea.
One hint would help a whole lot.
Boy: hell no.
Your way off.
Girl: Haha, oops..
Boy: arctic
Cold
Girl: gimme a hint, I suck at this game.
Boy: braces.
Girl: I have braces. :]
I don’t really study peoples teeth though.. lol.
Boy: well guess
Who is it
?
I think your close
Girl: oh really? Is it me then? Lol.
Boy: maybe?
Girl: maybe yes or maybe no?
Boy: maybe yes.
Girl: aww, yay. :]
Boy: why?
Girl: cuz your awesome.
Boy: cool u are too
Girl: thankss. :]
Boy: do you maybe like me?
Girl: yeah, I really do actually..
Boy: cool.
Not this weekend, but next weekend do you want to go to the movies?
Or something?
Girl: I’ll see if I can, but that’d be fun.
Boy: yeah
I gtg
I’ll be back in five minutes.
Boy: hay I gtg ill c you tomorrow
Girl: mmk, goodnight cutie.
Boy: c ya beautiful.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Cruisin For a Bruisin

“Take Dramamine! Take Bonine! Get the Patch! Wear the Magnets!” My friends shouted at me before I embarked on my first ever cruise, a 3 day shit-show to “nowhere.” What the pundits forgot to tell me was to “watch out for Sea Legs!” Thus, while I spent the 3 days in virtual comfort (1 Dramamine a day which I don’t’ even think I needed), I have spent the last 30 hours queasy and feeling like world was rocking back and forth. For some reason, none of my experienced cruising friends mentioned to me this lovely side effect, even though when I texted “My building feels like it’s swaying,” or “Is the airport moving?” or “Do you feel those subtle earthquakes?” They all replied, “Oh, you have sea legs” WTF are sea legs!? I’m totally unprepared.

In any event, I’m at work, trying to balance, read, act on fantasy football trades, write, and put words and paragraphs in the right order. I’ve had better days.

The cruise was organized as a 30th birthday party for Jaime, who has an uncanny ability to get me to jump, and do things I wouldn’t normally do. Four months ago, instead of saying “come” she’s emailing me “you’re coming” and thus, I’m the one person in the group of 17 who flew in for the weekend. It was worth it. Of course I have no idea why I trust her judgment over almost anyone else, including my own judgment, but she’s been a pretty good guide so far.

Anyway, here are the pictures.


Summarizing Quickly:

Day 1:
· Left work at 12, straight to yanks game, checked my bag at a bar, car service from there to the airport at 4:30.
· Early to the airport to make the earlier flight, but forgot to switch before I checked my bag, bag wouldn’t have made it, so I hit the bar for dinner
· Flight started with “Do you know the definition of coincidence?” to the girl sitting next to me. The same girl I’d given my bar stool to an hour earlier so she could sit.
· We talked, we shared a crossword, we had a drink (she had whiskey since that’s all her Louisiana family drank growing up), we discussed how embarrassing and uncomfortable the flight would have been had I hit on her at the bar and she rejected me. I did not get her number, but a very nice single serving friend.
· Jen picked me up at the airport and we played darts, split a few games, had a few drinks, and went to sleep.


Day 2:
· Woke up and shopped. Dramamine, Bracelets, Alcohol, and most importantly MINT M&M’s! What’s been sold out in NYC for months, I found in FL!
· We got to the boat around 1 after a 30 minute, intense, political discussion between Caroline and our Cheaufer, Jen’s Dad.
· At the port, we gave the porter $20 for each of our “special bags” and the bags beat us to our rooms, full of alcohol.
· I filled up my binoculars, Jen filled up some water bottles, and we met some of the group at lunch at 2.
· Post lunch was pool time, which included major drinking, and hot tubbing, and the first round of never have I ever.
· The boat was a shit show, many young adults, tons of drinking, and we did our best to contribute w/the pool puking incident.
· The drinking caused me to break out the Conductor talk again. I’m not sure under what auspices I thought I could keep that lie up for 3 days.
· The binoculars were awesome, got many complements, but they broke in 2 and will have to be replaced. RIP fake binoculars, you’ve saved me hundreds of dollars.
· A few from our group decided to tackle, bite, etc…and those people may not have made it to 8:30 dinner. I’m not 100% sure, obv I was drinking too.
· Tiaras were worn at dinner, and I was mocked for being a conductor, which I would have taken really personally, had I actually been one.
· I wore my $5 watch proudly all weekend b/c my cell phone was in my safe. Some would ask if I enjoyed the vacation from cellular life, I’d say I was anxious.
· After dinner, dessert (and hot chocolate of course), it was up to Jaime and Tom’s room for the first bout of kings, where Vanessa showed us all how to drink like Mark should have.


Day 3
· Up at 8:30 = 5 hours of sleep. Plenty. I had breakfast in the dining room, alone. Shared a table w/3 couples who didn’t even talk to each other, let alone me.
· I was on Cococay at 10, on the beach till 12 before it got clowdy and was volleyball time. “Team Dominate,” who won 6 games in a row, consisted of Tom, Myself, and 3 kids under 12 years old. We dominated.
· At 3 it was back to the boat and at 3:15, it was never have I ever round 2, pool addition (bec the hot tub was occupied).
· Hot tub schemes were hatched to slowly take over, but our attempts were thwarted again and again (Plan D, which I called Inappropriate PDA Plan was never enacted by Vanessa and Mark).
· The binoculars still worked, though they no longer looked like real binoculars, they still carried enough alcohol for me.
· My expected 1.5 hour nap was shorted to a 0.5 hour nap because the Captain’s Speech before dinner meant free Champaign, which meant a drinking contest between Jen and I. I lost, she missed dinner.
· In my rented tux for the evening (forgot formal wear but wasn’t too expensive) I had 2 entrĂ©es and created a new drink, hot chocolate w/Malibu. Too bad I couldn’t incorporate the Mint M&M’s.
· We played 15 person kings after dinner, at the club. In the 6 games I played (which means likely 36 picks), I never actually got a king. I made up for it by losing the ability to raise my right hand quickly (who invented the number 5 anyway). No pointing, no saying the word drink/drunk/drank.
· “WHY IS MY OFFICE SWAYING BACK AND FORTH?”


Day 4
· Jen got the hook up at Atlantis on Paradise Island, which meant that her friend picked us up at 9am, took us around the island, showing us $20M house after house, before getting us free wrist bands for the awesome water park. Jen was like a 10 year old, and I was like an old man (I even got too scared to do one of the slides). Which is explained here.
· After 4 hours on land, the ground felt like it was moving. I should have known at that point I’d have problems getting off the boat.
· Back on the boat after Atlantis (there’s nothing to do in Nassau, nothing), I lost about $180 playing blackjack and craps (I don’t ever win in casinos anymore).
· Walked to the front of the boat at the top to feel the 50 mph winds and view w/Mark. Discussed romantic things like ballast, depth, knots, and wakes.
· The final dinner was the first that everyone made it to, and the final night of partying was quite a blast.
· We didn’t play any drinking games, but we did participate in a scavenger hunt, crazy race, silly game. The game included things like “Show me a guy and a girl sharing a pair of pants, a guy w/o his pants on, a girl in a thong, etc.
· The game culminated w/a pageant of male cross dressers in their boxers strutting around the room. I won’t tell you who won the pageant, but I will say that I have fantastic hips and a gold medal.
· At least I got a keychain and a few free drinks out of it. Spent the next 3 hours dancing, meeting a few strangers, and watching some of the girls jump into the pool at 4am w/random boys.
· Wore the wrist band on the last night b/c the water was choppier. Of course you can feel the boat moving and bobbing and swaying, just as you can see the pool water pull and push people around like a strong ocean current, but I didn’t get close to sick. (until I got off the boat!)

Day 5
· I traveled home. Left my room at 8:15am, got home around 5:15pm.


What I know (New Feature):

I know my fear of flying seems to be increasing with my age. It may have to do with the end of the fearlessness of my youth, or maybe it’s that I know the airlines are cutting costs and corners and I know it will lead to a mistake. . . . However, considering that it’s been 30,000 commercial flights a day for almost 7 years w/o a crash, I may just be becoming a scaredy-cat.

I know that the trip cost me about $1,300 ($300 flight, $500 cruise, $100 room expenses, $80 pre cruises expenses like alcohol, wrist bands, and Dramamine, $180 gambling, $60 in tips and $80 in cabs). Considering I know I spend around $300 a weekend in NY, and I know last Labor Day Weekend I spent about $1,800, and therefore, I know fiscally it was well worth it.

I just took my temperature, 98. I know I’m not sick.

I know that I’m really nice to people when I meet them, I’m not so nice to them when we’re friends, b/c hey, we’re friends, and of course at that point I’d also do anything for um. I know Vanessa and I were friends right away b/c I automatically busted her balls after explaining this to her.

I know how to easily impress people and there are 4 very simple ways to impress someone. I know that you should know 2 cities in most countries, so that if you meet someone from that country, you can talk about it, and maybe even pretend you’ve been. I know that reading popular books, or nonfiction history books, can impress people. I know that learning 10-20 words in major languages can easily impress someone who also speaks. Lastly, I know you can easily impress someone with abilities you learned when you were 7 years old, namely, to memorize 10 digits instead of writing them down (the hard part depends on how drunk you are).
I know my roommate loves that last approach, however, I one upped him Sunday by going for 2 numbers, 2 full names, and 2 emails after 3 glasses of wine, 4 beers, and 1 hot chocolate w/Malibu.

I know my Spanish is much better now than it ever was when I took the language for 5 years 13 years ago, even though my vocabulary is 10% of what it once was.

I know I waited in 11 lines yesterday on my way back home. I know I waited to get breakfast, I know I waited to get off the boat, I know I waited in customs, I know I waited for the bus to the airport, I know I waited to check in, I know I waited to drop off my bag, I know I waited to go through security, I know I waited to hand the steward my boarding pass, I know I waited to get to my seat, I know I waited to get off the plane, and finally, I know I waited for 15 minutes to get into a cab.

I know everyone talks about there being too much food on cruise ships and everyone is worried about over eating. I also now know that some people only take the stairs on the ship so they can overeat. Well, I know I didn’t over eat (though I had 2 entrĂ©es one night), and I know I was actually hungry at times.

I know Mint M&M’s are like crack, w/o the side effects.

I know the cruise would have been very different without Jen to tell me what to do, where to go, what to pack, and what drugs to take.

What I don’t know (New Feature):

I don’t know why don’t you get electrocuted when you touch both sides of a battery?

I don’t know when this dizzy feeling will go away.

I don’t know why a few people asked me if I got lucky either on the boat or on the last specifically on the boat. How hard is it to understand that it has nothing to do with luck. (and no, I didn’t)

I don’t know what’s been going on in project runway for the last 4 weeks. It is the only thing on my DVR but I’m just never home and never have time to watch. I don’t even know what movies we have on Netflix around the apartment right now. I know they’ve been there for over a month.

I don’t know why everyone doesn’t call out the new McCain VP candidate on her “pro life” rhetoric. She may have chosen against the decision to have an abortion, but that does not make her pro life. She says she “made a decision, made a choice.” That statement does not mean she is pro life, that means she is pro choice, and chose not to have an abortion. Does she think pro choice is pro abortion? Does she think all pro choice people would have chosen abortion? Someone who is pro life, would have said “there was no option, there was no choice involved, I never thought about it.” But she DID think about it, and she made a decision, and thus, someone needs to explain to her that she’s actually pro choice and anti abortion (I don’t know anyone who’s pro abortion). I don’t know why someone doesn’t throw her words back at her.

Speaking of Palin, I don’t know why she didn’t run for President? Conservatives seem to love her more than J. Mc.