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Portland Pride 2017

Tuesday, June 20th, 2017 No comments

This past week was Pride Week here in Portland. As usual I didn’t do anything during the week. I did all of my celebrating on the weekend. Well, one thing I did do during the week was pick up one of the rainbow badges that I see so many LGBT employees and allies wearing at Intel.

I drove past the Pride Festival on Saturday, but I figured I would wait until Sunday to go.

On Sunday, I marched in the parade for the first time. I was happy to be marching with Intel. Like I said on Facebook, I know a lot of people are cynical about corporations getting involved with Pride. Some think that corporations just throw money at it for good PR. From what I’ve seen, I believe that companies like Intel see the value in employees feeling comfortable being themselves at work. We had large group marching with our float. Apparently a lot larger than normal. It was so much fun walking along the route and being cheered on by the crowd. Everyone was nice, including the drag queens doing commentary at a couple of the bars along the route. People seemed genuinely excited to see us. I saw some friends in the crowd and I was later told by friends that they saw me. The only negative was that the speakers in our float that were playing music lost power early on even though they were supposed to have a 4-hour charge. Oh well.
Portland Pride 2017

After we got to the end of the route, I went to the festival. I didn’t stop at as many booths as I normally do because I was tired and had stuff to do at home. I got food samples for Reese, bought a Nike Pride shirt, and took a picture with underwear models like I do each year.

As I was leaving the festival to go back to my car, a homeless guy called me the f word because I didn’t have any change to give him. I was still flying high from my experience that day, so it didn’t bother me at all. That guy is going through some stuff I can’t relate to. Since my car was along the parade route, I decided to watch more of the parade. Yes, it’s a LONG parade. It turns out that the parade was almost over at this point. Intel’s float was #33. The last float was #164.

I had a great time at Pride this year. Even though I was exhausted Monday, I hope to try to fit more activities in my schedule next year.

Yet Another Tattoo

Thursday, May 25th, 2017 No comments

Wolf Tattoo

I got a new tattoo the last weekend in April.  Lacey at Tron City Tattoo did a great job.  I’m very pleased with how it turned out. A while back I started thinking about getting a wolf or a pair of dice for my next tattoo and ended up settling on a wolf.  I found a design online and Lacey gave me 2 more options based on that design.  One showed the wolf snarling, but I decided I didn’t want it to be aggressive.

The wolf wasn’t meant to be a reference to anything in particular, but many assumed that it is Ghost from A Song of Ice and Fire / Game of Thrones. I’ll go with that.

What next…

Accidents Happen

Monday, December 26th, 2016 No comments

On December 1, I was in my first real accident where I was the driver. I don’t count that time in high school where I backed into a classmate’s car. Yeah, I was in an accident with John about 9 years ago, but he was driving then.

I was on my way home after work and the car in front of me stopped suddenly.  I was unable to stop in time.  I later found out that the car in front of him had stopped suddenly, which is why he did.  My airbag deployed and I got hit in the head.  I remember sitting there for a little while, shocked and upset and not really sure what to do.  I think the first thing I did was try to start my car to get it out of the road. Once it wouldn’t start, I knew that it was a goner. It was smoking a lot, so probably shouldn’t have tried that.

I don’t remember all the details of what happened afterward. I remember getting out of the car and the other driving talking to me at some point and telling me I needed to call the police, which I hadn’t thought to do.  I got back in the car and could hear on my Verizon hum thing a conversation between whoever handles the hum emergency services and 911.  I maybe had noticed something was going on with the hum earlier. I guess they detected I was in an accident and called for help. They were sending police my way and started asking me a lot of questions. They even offered to call my sister, who is listed as my emergency contact.

Firemen arrived and asked me a lot of questions just to make sure I was okay. My car was totaled. The other car just had a damaged rear bumper from what I could tell. A police officer  came and took a statement. No citation was issued. The other driver is a contractor at Intel like I used to be. He said he was a little sore but didn’t need to go to the hospital. I was feeling a little pain in my groin region, but not much. I must have been hit by something. It took a while but the tow truck arrived and towed my car to my place. It was there for a weekend until GEICO arranged to have it taken away.  What was weird is that when I started my car to drive home that night, it was making a noise that it had been making intermittently for weeks. I remember thinking to myself that I didn’t want to have to buy a new car anytime soon. I had planned on taking it in for regular servicing in just 2 or 3 days.

my car

Overall, I was pretty lucky.The guy who owns the building next to mine told me a few days ago that he saw the car and figured whoever was driving the car was in the hospital. A neighbor told me that he saw it and didn’t see me for a few days and wondered if I was okay. The night of the accident, I started feeling some knee and back pain and I started having headaches.  All went away within a week except for the back pain. Ive been seeing a chiropractor about that.  I know the other driver has seen a doctor too. One time I was driving and I though I was about to hit a car in front of me.  I braked pretty hard. It turns out that there was no car in front of me. 

GEICO has been a pleasant insurance company to work with for the most part. They paid me more than I would have expected for my old car. They reimbursed me for the cost of having my old car towed to my place. They are taking care of my medical bills and the other drivers. Since it’s my first accident, I quality for accident forgiveness.

I was in a rental car for 5 days before I got a new car. I’m not big on cars and don’t like spending lots of money on them.  I just want something to get me around town.  I’m constantly tempted to give up driving and take public transportation everyone. I went to a dealership to look at a used Nissan Leaf, but it wasn’t there anymore. I probably dodged a bullet on that one.  Having an electric car would have been a pain.  I ended up with a 2016 Kia Rio.  I never thought I would buy a new car, but I did. It wasn’t a perfect car, but it had all the audio features I wanted. I spent a little money today getting some upgrades. Now it’s about 90% perfect. I can live that 10%.

Having a new car isn’t a bad thing. I just don’t like the way it happened.  Since then I’ve been a little extra careful making sure there’s enough space between me and the next car.  We’ve had a lot of snow an ice over the past few weeks, so I stayed home as much as I could.  I don’t need any more accidents.

Roommate and New Job

Sunday, December 25th, 2016 No comments

There’s a little under a  week left in the year, so I’m going to try to spend some time over the next week getting caught up on all the blog entries I’ve been meaning to write. Some of these topics may have been mentioned on Facebook or previous posts.

Back in October, I got a roommate. My new roommate is my good friend Kysen.  I never thought I would have a roommate again. I didn’t think I would live with anyone else again unless I was in a relationship. But Kysen’s lease was ending and his roommate was moving to Astoria, so he asked if he could use my extra bedroom.

I lived alone for over 8 years before Kysen moved in so it was an adjustment getting used to sharing a home with someone again.  We’re different people when it comes to cleanliness and organization, but .  There were a couple of nights about a week apart where I went out and came home to find a decent amount of stuff rearranged.  I ended up liking what he did, but I just wish I could have been a part of it.  Thee are times where i still have to ask him where things are because I don’t know where he put them.  Overall though, I think we are both happy living with each other.

Intel logo

In November I got a new job. I’m an now a Cloud Software Engineer at Intel. It was about 6 weeks from the time I interviewed until the time I started.  It all came about because of a contact that I have on Twitter.  I’m working on the same campus that I worked on as a contractor. I love my team and the work I’m doing.  We work hard and we have fun socializing and engaging in random nerf gun fights. I’m so much happier than I was before. What a difference being happy with your job can make in all aspects of your life!

There’s been a lot of change in my life, but it’s been for the better. Life is good.

I Don’t Understand Coffee

Sunday, October 30th, 2016 No comments

I don’t understand coffee.  I don’t get everyone’s fascination/obsession with it.  I like to have it every once in a while, but I’m not a coffee fanatic.

To tell the truth,  I kinda roll my eyes whenever I come across a joke or meme about how people can’t function without their coffee or how they can’t speak to someone until they’ve had a certain amount of coffee. One of my biggest regular annoyances is when I want go somewhere to get a snack and I have to wait in a line of coffee addicts with orders that each take a while to make.

Coffee just makes me wired and paranoid for a little while and I feel like crap afterwards. Then I need to use the bathroom.  It’s not worth it for me.  I guess I’d rather be groggy.

So, I guess I’ll never understand the coffee obsession and I’ll continue judging people who are coffee fanatics :).

 

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Wallet Update

Friday, September 30th, 2016 No comments

Two days after I wrote the last post was my last day at my job.  I left early that day after a going away lunch.  When I got home I checked the mail and I had a letter from TriMet saying that they had something that belonged to me.  The letter was dated August 29, the day I wrote the previous post.

My assumption was that maybe the person who had my wallet just tossed it on a bus. My cards were already canceled, but I figured I would at least have my license, which is probably how TriMet got my address. Having it back would save me the trouble of having to replace some of things inside.  I immediately drove to the TriMet lost and found. It turns out that an eyeglass case with my license it in had been left on a bus.  It wasn’t my entire wallet, but it least I wasn’t going to have to spend time at the DMV getting a new license.  I wonder what this person was doing with that one item and not the other stuff in my wallet. Who knows?

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Latest Tattoo

Monday, July 18th, 2016 2 comments

Ouroboros Tattoo

I’m pretty sure I never showed off my tattoo that I got last October. It’s an ouroboros. I like the design. In a sense I was going through kind of a reinvention last year, so that’s what it symbolized to me. It took a long time to finish. I may have gotten it in a different spot if I could do it over again. It’s in a pretty safe place if you’re concerned about aging and weight changes, but I think it looks a little odd with my other tattoo because of the differences in length. Maybe I’ll get something else to fill it out, but I did say no more back tattoos…

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World Naked Bike Ride 2016

Monday, June 27th, 2016 1 comment

World Naked Bike Ride 2016

A couple of days ago, Portland had it’s annual World Naked Bike Ride. Events like this are held in different cities across the world. Every year since I moved to Portland, I’ve wanted to take part in this event, but I always backed out the day of for some reason or another. I didn’t feel like going out for some reason or it was too cold or I didn’t want to go alone or I didn’t like how I looked. This year the weather was perfect, I had people to go with, and I don’t care how I look.

Alex and I had been talking about the ride for months, so I’m glad we were able to go together. Along with us were a couple that I know through Alex, Bill and Steve. We met up at Alex’s place and rode our bikes to the park where the ride was starting. It was a long ride to the park, partially because we got lost. I was already tired by the time we got to there. I really need to stop skipping cardio days at the gym. Apparently you could start getting naked at 8 and we got there shortly after 8, so there were lots of people already unclothed. Our clothes quickly came off and we found a spot to wait in. While we waited we ate some food and took in all the sights and sounds. It was just so much fun being around so many naked people. Yes, I like being naked and looking at naked people. No, not everyone was completely naked. From what I saw most of the women and a decent amount of the men were only partially unclothed. Some people were fully dressed. Some people had on body paint. I think I will do that next year. There was a playground in the park and surprisingly there were children playing while they were surrounded by thousands of naked people. They were eye level with my crotch and  the only time I was uncomfortable was when we were looking for a bathroom and went near the playground.  I know this event is supposed to be a protest again oil dependency, but for me it’s just about having fun being naked and about being comfortable with your own body.

The ride was supposed to start at 9, but it was about 9:30 before we were finally on the road biking. The route took us through the streets of Southeast Portland. The streets were blocked off. There were so many people along the route watching, cheering, taking pictures, etc. There were lots of people watching with their children. I could hear that some of children were amazed to see so many naked people. It didn’t take long for the group I was with to get separated, but we weren’t really trying hard to stay together. I only saw a couple of accidents. I narrowly avoided a few crashes when people would suddenly swerve over in front of me without looking to see if anyone was in their path. The ride was 6 miles long, a lot of it going downhill, so it wasn’t too bad. My butt did start hurting after a while and there were things sticking to my seat, but I managed.  I actually never saw Bill and Steve again the rest of that night. The route took us close to Alex’s place. Alex and I met up near the end destination after the ride, put some shorts on because it was getting a little chilly by this time, and rode the short distance back to his place. After that I headed home.

I’m glad I finally got around to participating in the naked bike ride this year. I hope to do it again next year. Maybe I can convince some more friends to come along.

What’s Up With Me

Friday, June 17th, 2016 No comments

Not a whole lot has happened around here lately. I make an appearance here and there at birthday celebrations, but I mostly stay home. I’ve been sick for most of the past couple of months. Whatever I have is spreading around the lab I work in. Some days it seems like everybody’s coughing. There was actually a 2 week period where I was feeling file, but when I came back to work one Monday, another guy and I were both sick again. I feel better than I have in a while today, but the sickness is still lingering around.

Alex and I stopped dating about a month ago. It was his choice. Nothing happened. He decided that he wasn’t ready to be in a relationship and just wanted a friend that he could be himself around. I never made that post about him that I promised. We met in the spring or summer of last year at a gamer meetup and became friends after we kept seeing each other at various events. When I made that Facebook post at the end of the year with the goal of wanting to go on one date this year, he told me that he had been wanting to ask me out for a while. I’m glad he did because I would’ve never known. We had lots of fun together while it lasted. I was always happy about the fact that we met the old fashioned way and not through an app. We still talk to each other every day and we’ve hung out a few times since then.

Alex did get that job at The Wet Spot and usually works there a few days a week. I’ve added more fish and plants to my aquarium. I’m trying to resist the urge to keep adding things. I’ve cut myself off, but Alex says I could probably get a few shrimp. Right now I have 8 cherry barbs, 5 black skirt tetras, 5 cardinal tetras, 4 algae eaters (otocinclus), and 4 bronze cory catfish.

Pride is this weekend. I’m not sure if I’ll do anything besides go to the festival. I feel like I should do more, especially after the shooting in Orlando last weekend. I can’t wait to not be sick again.

I want to start drawing again. I guess Alex rubbed off (he’s a painter). I used to draw some when I was young, but it was mostly trying to reproduce picture in books. I also think I want to do stuff on Youtube and stream on Twitch more often.

Hopefully, this summer will be more eventful. I have lots of ideas, just not of time.

I’m a Swimmer

Friday, May 13th, 2016 No comments

Alex and I signed up to take swim lessons together at Portland State. He already knew how to swim, but just wanted to become more comfortable being in public pools. I had never really learned to swim. I’ve signed up for classes before, but either couldn’t go or stopped very soon into the class. We plan on doing some watery things this summer.

This class was short, only 4 sessions. We missed the first one because we were signed up for the wrong class and got our class an hour late. We just got in the water on our own. Afterwards, Alex said it didn’t feel bad at all being in the pool. That was the last time I saw him at the pool. He was busy during the other 3 sessions.

Over the next 3 sessions, there was 1 other person in the class on 2 days and just me on 1 day. I became more comfortable than I have ever been in the water. I swam without any kind of flotation device for the first time in my life. I couldn’t go for very far, but I was able to move. I got pretty good at kicking and doing a breast stroke. I need to practice more. I never really got the hang of treading water, but I can work on that more on my own. 3 45-minute sessions isn’t that much time.

I’m so glad I took the class. I might sign up for another one a little closer to home. Or I might just watch Youtube videos and practice on my own. Look at me. I’m a swimmer now!