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Archive for July, 2012

Wow! I had forgotten how great a day at the ballpark can be! It had been so long since I went to a game, let alone a minor league game, that it was like a new experience for me. One that I will have to do again.

Even though I arrived late, there was still much fun to be had. The sun was out in full force and I couldn’t be more grateful that I had remembered to put on sunscreen before I went. It was the Everett Aquasox versus the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes in a monumentally important game of epic proportions…not really. At least that wasn’t the feeling in the crowd, which was made of numerous groups of children and their chaperones. For them, the game was an experience. Not that it wasn’t for me and my friend. But we had been to games, seen games, played games so the bloom was off the rose for us. But there was something else. There was beer, hotdogs, and soda, sing-a-longs, that race on the big screen with three different avatars racing toward their goal. There was that and it was nice, but for us, it was an alleviation from responsibility. For those couple hours, it was just baseball and conversation and nothing else. Even though we talked about those things, their immediacy and tendency of controlling our lives wasn’t there. The gates of the ballpark shielded us like a levee against the deluge of the real world. 

I don’t know how this little gem had escaped my mind for so long but it was definitely worth the time and I won’t be forgetting it any time soon.

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Visiting my parents house is always a test in numbing myself to the past. Today, I went because my mom needed some help with her new computer. I’m no expert but I’m much further along than she is so I told her I would do what I could. Her primary concern was uploading my sister’s wedding photos from ten years ago onto her hard drive. I told her I would help, despite knowing what I would see in the photos. My plan was to show her how to upload them, click on a couple to show her how, then go back into the living room and watch the season premier of Breaking Bad with my dad. My mother had other plans.

She got it into her head that a slideshow would be the best way to experience her new computer and of course needed me to show her how. So I did and we watched the time capsule from a decade ago play out in front of her eyes. They were nice pics. Maybe a little blurry but there were some decent images of my sister, her husband, our parents, siblings, family, etc. I watched but knew that there would be something that I didn’t want to see. Sure enough, I saw her. My ex from ten years ago, looking just as I remembered, frozen in my mind like a painting. I had moved on since her, been with and experienced other women but a twang of pain still picked my heart string at seeing her. It was difficult enough still getting over a more recent ex but seeing her, a girl I had been with for nearly three years, it was a lot to handle. I suppose if I wasn’t so cut off from my emotions I would have felt more. But I was surprised that it didn’t hurt more. It was still unpleasant.

But that wasn’t all. After going through all 100+ photos, my mom decided to check her facebook. For some reason that I still didn’t know, she was still friends with a different ex of mine. And what do I see in the timeline? My ex, jubilant over the weekend she had just had with her new boyfriend. Excellent! Just what I wanted to see as I still recover from my last few disastrous relationship; an ex having a blast with her new guy.

It’s such a pain in the ass. I suppose I’ll get over it eventually. While dating someone new, I’ll usually forget about every other girl that came before, or at least look back with satisfaction that I’m with someone else. But being kicked out of a relationship, one where you allowed the person you were with to look into your pure soul, the being that is nothing but you, that defines you as the individual you are; and they ‘meh’. That fucking sucks.

This is the main reason why I don’t bring my dates and girlfriends to meet my parents until FAR into the relationship. It’s just asking to be brought up again as some sort of fucking nostalgic piece that I would much rather extract from my soul like that chick in Prometheus did with the alien. If only they had that for memories.

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In a continuing effort to better myself, I recently renewed my gym membership! I wouldn’t call myself out of shape but I could definitely work on my strength and endurance. So, in signing up, I figured I could get my cardio by swimming and build some strength with the help of a personal trainer. I’ve never had one before but I always work better and harder with someone pushing me. 

So far, with two training sessions and two swims, my body HURTS! I don’t remember my body ever hurting like this, with the possible exception of when I went snowboarding and fell down ALL DAY. I can’t even straighten my arms without them hurting around the elbow and forearm. I only hope I haven’t started out too strong instead of easing my body back into working out.

I’m not going to stop though. Even without the hefty membership fee, I would continue to go. Not only do I tend to feel more energized when I work out, it’s a much better use of my time than playing video games or watching movies. Don’t get me wrong though. I’ll still do those things but I’ll work in some physical activity when I can.

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With the sun being out for the first time on the holiday, it was only natural that Gasworks Park felt more like a festival than just a nice place to view the night’s fireworks.

This was the first time I had gone to Gasworks for the 4th of July so I didn’t know exactly what to expect. What I did expect was plenty of people, frisbee playing, blankets, and picnics. Those were all there but beyond that, there were the things that I did NOT expect. The security, the food booths, the inflatable slide, the business stands, the gaudy banners, the inflatable Statue of Liberty head, the kites (some of which were crashing into people’s head), and the general blanketing of people on the beautiful, grassy hill that stood in the middle of the park.

So majestic!

Despite the amazing amount of people, it was a nice time, even with a chill the sun just couldn’t completely thwart. I even did something I rarely do: start up a conversation. A young man and woman (though it seemed important to them to point out they were professionals) who were very nice and talkative, sat next to me and we talked about the fireworks, jobs, lives, and such. It was a good conversation but I didn’t want to latch onto people who clearly had their own thing going so I slowly backed off and let them have their time (made especially easy with the arrival of a friend of theirs). I just didn’t get their names. Oh well.

One thing that really stood out was that when the sun had finally gone down and people across the lake started lighting fireworks, the lounging masses got to their feet and moved into a better position. That’s when I heard a voice shout, far from and behind the throng, “Sit the fuck down!” Now I can understand the man’s desire to see the lights. I’ve been to enough events where I had to get a view of the action through a maze of bobbing and non-bobbing heads but yelling at a mass of people to sit down when you’re making no effort to find a better viewing position is just ridiculous. Everybody wanted to see the fireworks and most, even from a sitting position, needed to move in order to see everything. Understand that starting from the back in a situation like that will NEVER work because people are there for one reason: to see the fireworks. Anyway, it wasn’t a huge deal. Just something I noticed.

The firework show itself was great. While it lasted about fifteen minutes, the air was packed with all kinds of lights. The ones that really stood out were huge smiley faces with different colored sparks for the outline of the face, the eyes, and the mouth. It was incredible. There were also some other shapes. One looked like a hamburger to me but I’m sure I was taking an imaginative spin on that one. The other shapes were indistinguishable from my vantage point but it was clear they were going for something in three dimensions. I was also told later that the entire show was set to music but because I was on the west side of the hill could only hear muffled noises that sounded like it could come from anywhere and any source. I’m sure it was nice though.

Anyway, I’m glad I went. Another experience in the bag!

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