Monthly Archives: February 2011

Weekend Report: 19FEB through 21FEB

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So this weekend was yet another weekend of partying, chilling, and not doing too much outdoorsy.  I’m seriously debating why I’m posting these, BUT this weekend also marks my return to climbing after this infernal rib injury, so I figure that it warrants posting.

 

Friday –

 

Friday was a fairly busy day at work, but once I actually got home was when the real work began; my buddy Mike had been slowly moving into his new apartment all week, and Friday Night was when the guys and I were finally all free, so Mike had rented a U-Haul and we were set to move all the heavy stuff; furniture beds and dressers.

 

I met up with Dave and Mike at his old apartment, and by that time they had moved a few pieces into the truck already.  I helped them stack in the rest, organize it up, and we closed up the van and headed over to the new place.  Since the van had to get there first, and I was going to be driving significantly faster than a fully laden U-haul, I grabbed a bite to eat and some cash before heading over there, and I still got there while they were still backing the truck into position.  Unloading was a fairly quick process, although the distinct lack of a couch made slacking off rather difficult, which probably helped a lot.

 

After we finished up unpacking Dave and Mike dropped off the truck while I stayed in to hold the fort and play a few licks on Mikes guitars.  When they got back Mike and I Jammed for a bit while Dave set about drumming on anything he could find.  Through this we made the key decisions of the night; what to eat, and what beer to drink.  We ended up with Chinese from a place down the street, and Magic Hats winter brew combined with some Sam Adams and Anchor Steam Lager. We picked up the drinks and the eats, but in our rush to get back forgot one major thing…

 

How to eat the food.  Not usually a key question to a group of guys, but in this case it was pertinent… especially since Mike hadn’t packed any silverware into the stuff we brought over.  However, a quick trip to the convenience store through the local hoodlums (turns out their more scared of you than you are of them!) brought us plastic forks and a hundred paper plates.  Too many, you may say?  I would disagree, seeing as Mike now had a fireplace.  One that didn’t have wood, but was able to burn paper… The rest of the night saw us drinking, chilling, and lighting everything we could get our hands on.

 

Saturday –

 

Saturday started out perfectly; waking up semi-early (read: 10:45) and relaxing for the morning.  I talked with my folks about heading out to meet them so I could get a GPS for my upcoming trip, and they told me about a cool “gentlemen’s lounge” style of museum in Bostons center, and we agreed to meet up there.

 

We toured the museum for a while; it was exactly what one would want out of a Gentleman’s lounge, it smelled of old leather, cigars, and scotch and had many comfortable chairs spaced around.  We saw an exhibit on an artist named Gorey, who drew fairly morbid comics, which were pretty impressive.  We ate a quick lunch at Cheers in Faniel Hall, I grabbed the GPS, and we parted ways after I promised to bike home safely, not get blown off my bike, and to have fun in California.

 

I relaxed for the rest of the day, simply waiting around for the party this coming evening.  Dave and Snowman had the apartment to themselves, so we were planning a pong championship challenge and general night of tomfoolery.  I met up with my buddy Pat and his friend Melinda, and we all headed over after a quick glass of scotch, where Pat and I grabbed some quick food before we parked and walked over to the apartment.

 

By the time we got there pretty much everyone was already there, and the championship had already begun in earnest.  Dave and Snowman had picked up a pair of glowy necklaces for the winners to wear, so they were changing hands pretty well as we slowly drained the beers.  Shotgunning competitions were had

 

Side-story the shotgunning comp was started by Dave, since he had a fancy “beer punch” he wanted to use.  It didn’t work too well, so we graduated to my knife.  The knife not only looked much cooler (shanking beers…), but itworked much better at opening up the can, and it scared the living crap out of the girls in the room… so hey, no one got stabbed, and we looked Badass!

 

nachos were eaten, and horrible shots were mocked mercilessly (such as the one where I left my beer on the table, and Dave sniped it PERFECTLY, ending the game).  The night itself was pretty much perfect, a generally awesome time had between friends where we fought over the glowy necklaces and rocked out like there was no tomorrow.

 

Sunday –

 

But tomorrow did come, and with it came the promise of a good day of climbing.  Not outdoors unfortunately, since it was still rather bitterly cold, but Metro would have to do for now.  I relaxed for most of the morning, leaving home by around 3:00 or so.  Met up with a friend while bouldering, and we busted out a few topropes before calling it quits when the gym closed up at 6:00.  I didn’t do impressively well unfortunately, but was able to work out the knots in my arms and stretch my arms from the three weeks of resting I had done thanks to my rib.

 

I was pretty dead after climbing though, since even at the low levels I was stuck at I had still worked myself pretty hard, in order to get my strength back for California.  So, to treat myself, I decided to drive up I-93 to Chili’s for some ribs for dinner.  I got there and ordered up a full old-school spread; Classic Nachos, BBQ Ribs, and a Milkshake.  I almost always order the Nachos, thanks to an old friend who couldn’t live without them, but the combination of all of that left me nearly unable to move, even with having three ribs left over.

 

So I Packed everything up, and headed over to Mikes new apartment to check out the couches that he had picked up while I was climbing.  We chilled and jammed for an hour or two, I’m actually starting to get pretty good at this whole guitar thing, and then headed out to check a new lounge out with another friend.

 

Our night took us all around the North End and Govt. Center, adventuring from one place to the next and having a grand time rocking out.  We started out at The Living Room, a very laid-back place with large couches and strong (expensive) drinks, but moved out fairly quickly due to the lack of people there.  We tried to get into the Cigar Bar in the North End, but were turned away by the private party being held.  So we headed to Dirty Nelly’s where we ran into Mike Barrett, an amazing Irish singer who does his own “unique” takes on a lot of popular songs.  While his songs were just as dirty as normal, the bar itself was a lot less exciting than his usual haunt, so we had a few beers and headed out yet again, looking for adventure.

 

Our final destination of the night was chosen fairly randomly, solely due to the band playing in the window.  They sounded pretty good, and seeing live music is always better than most other things.  However, when we got inside we had a startling revelation; this band didn’t have a singer, they were a Karaoke band.  This meant that they were the ultimate cover band, able to play a few hundred songs while drunk bar patrons howled along with them.  So Mike, Filipe and myself set ourselves up at a table and started going through the song list, while listening to a rather fun rendition of Love Shack.

 

We ended up singing All-Star by Smash Mouth, and clearly had most of the bar rocking out with us.  There’s just something about old 90’s songs that everyone loves… their so upbeat and rocking that you can’t stay sad or annoyed when your listening to them.  We didn’t do an encore, unfortunately, but had to head out fairly soon after our song, since the band was tearing down and heading out.  So Filipe jetted out, and Mike and I headed back to his place to jam again for a bit.  I headed home a bit afterwards, ready for a slow day of working at home.

 

Monday –

 

Monday was a pretty chilled out day, mostly because of the holiday allowing me to work from home.  I spent the day alternating between working on a SolidWorks project and playing rounds of Starcraft, making myself a nice lunch of reheated ribs, orange slices, and some juice.  Overall a relaxing and chilled out day, without very much going on.

 

Weekend report; 11FEB through 13FEB

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So this weekend was another of the “stay at home and kick it” style of weekend; my ribs were feeling a lot better, but still not enough to have gone climbing for the last week, so combining that with the fact that I haven’t biked to work in almost a month gave me a fairly rough case of wanderlust.

Friday –

Friday started off with my drive home from work, leaving early at around 4:30.

Saturday –

Saturday started out nice and slowly, taking its time to ramp up to the full rocking day that it would be.  I woke up late, and lazed around in bed for a while after waking up; listening to music and just thinking about life and everything going on.  After I finally mobilized, I cooked up some quick lunch, and started going over my bike.

The poor bike hadn’t been ridden in nearly a month at this point, but it was still pretty much ready to kick the door in and ride.  I just filled up the tires, gave it a quick clean, jumped on, and was out the door.  I wanted to take a fairly short ride, since by this point it was nearly 3:30, so I just did a big loop around Brighton, onto Comm Ave, around a bit more, and back home.  The party was slated to start around 9:30, so I was aiming to be back at the house by 6:00 so I could make myself a nice dinner before heading out.

I can’t remember what I actually cooked for dinner, but I have a feeling that it involved burgers, spaghetti, or soup… Maybe some wings and/or nachos too.  Either way, it was definitely tasty, and when paired with an episode of Top Gear, and some Modern Warfare afterwards, it lead to a rather good start to my evening, at least as preparation for the party.

T and his roommates were throwing another “Saturday night revelry” shindig at their place, and this time the guest list was looking to be pretty packed, and packed with people I didn’t already know for once.  On my way over I picked up Dave from his place (Katie and her roommate were still getting ready, so Snowman was going to bring them along afterwards), and we rolled on the house.  Mike arrived literally exactly when we did, so we all spent the ten minutes that it took T to walk down his stairs to let us in rocking out on the porch, and debating tapping the Mini-keg that we had brought.

Once inside we saw we were in the early group; there was only five or six people there already, aside from the house-mates.  The party ballooned pretty quickly though, starting with a few games of Darts while waiting for people, and quickly moving upstairs once Mike pulled out the guitar and amp and started rocking out in the ballroom-attic-place.  By the middle of the night we had thirty of forty people rocking out in the attic and living room, but that just led to the craziest part of the night; trying the circle-dance.

I have no idea why Filipe thought this would be a good idea, but for some reason we all got into a circle, and were instructed on the intricacies of stepping left and right.  Now, to most people this would be easy.  To most non-intoxicated people that is.  To us… it became difficult, especially when combined with trying to hold onto each-others shoulders.  So instead of a “circle dance”, we moved into an “oval-stumble”, which devolved into a “fall on your face”.  Not my best moment, but it turned out to be one of the most fun parts of the night, once the BS of the “late-game” started to bubble to the surface.

This party reminded me of the dangers of staying late; while it’s easier to hook up with people in the late-game of a party, its also significantly easier to cause drama, and/or get stuck dealing with said drama (mostly stemming from the easy hookups).  We had two girls leave in a huff after one started hooking up with a friend of mine, and the other went into “protective roommate” mode, dragging the lovers bodily apart and hauling the girl out the front door; after some yelling and crying, of course.  Then we had the attempted hookup, where the guy was nearly launched out the door after a failed seduction.  Lastly, we had the “roommate disappears, and everyone gets recruited into helping to find her” situation, which thankfully resolved itself after about an hour of frantic phone calls and some running around mission hill searching.

At the end of the night I ended up driving the whole 337 crew home though, and finally headed home for some much needed R&R in prep for helping Mike move the next day.

Sunday –

Sunday started in pretty much the same manner as Saturday, with a slow wakeup followed by some music, rest, and a long, hot shower.  I couldn’t get a hold of Mike,so I headed out for a quick breakfast at a place called Jim’s Diner, a small grease-pit near my house.  This was the first time I’d eaten there, and it was definitely an amazing place; great pancakes, good sausage and eggs, and fairly cheap.  But mostly; it was close.  I chowed down, and tried Mike again.  No answer.  Well, I had my camera in my pocket, and great weather with cool-looking clouds, so I started off in a random direction I’d never been before.

I walked around Brighton for a few hours, taking pictures and relaxing to music.  I found myself one really cool pond with some neat cloud formations above it, and a little hocky-rink carved out of the snow.  And even cooler, I found BC’s dedicated “snow dumping spot”, where I think their plows dump the snow from their roads.  All this snow dumping made an amazing landscape, more akin to a glacier, or maybe the moon, than to Boston .  I took a good bit of time exploring the area, clambering up the pinicles, and falling through more than one cornice.  I even found a crevase or two, creepily enough.  My favorite part was the “Hot Gates” ice formation though; it seriously looked like something straight out of 300, with a huge area in front of it, a choke-point, and this cool ridge in the middle for the hero to stand (obviously I took pictures of myself there, thanks to my waterproof camera I was able to use some snow and ice as a tripod).  I continued walking around for a while, and finally headed home after I was finally able to get Mike on the phone.

See, Mike had partied harder than me.  Significantly.  Hard enough, in fact, for him to still have a hangover at 4:30 in the afternoon.  This meant that we were not, in any way, moving him today.  However, I had a backup plan in place (as I usually do), so I headed home, and kicked my roommate Rich’s door in; we had debated heading up to a shooting range in New Hampshire today, but we had decided to hold off so I could help Mike out.  So within the hour we were on the road up North, burning through the hour drive up to the lane.

We went to a place called Manchester Firing Line (I think), a place that reminded me of the dangers of a “Live free or Die” state.  See, New Hampshire lets people own guns.  Not just handguns, or rifles, or assault weapons, but… EVERYTHING.  Yes, you could rent a Vulcan Mini-gun (a six-barreled, helicopter mounted “area denial” weapon) and tear into some poor defenseless targets with a burning rain of steel. We didn’t go too far, although I was very temped to rent the SCAR or the AR-15, and got a simple .45 pistol, a box of shells, and a few targets.  After two rounds I realized that the gun was in no way going to work; it had a faulty safety that would re-engage after every shot, forcing me to disengage the safety and clear the chamber after every shot.  So the range-master grabbed us a new Sigg .45, and the shooting began in earnest.  Rich and I did pretty well for kinds who hadn’t shot in ages (months for me, years for him); we didn’t miss the target once, and stayed within the 7 line for nearly all of the shots.  We emptied a second box of shells before leaving, for a grand-total of 50 rounds each, packed up our final silhouettes, and headed out front.  We spent some time checking out the guns up front, and ended up talking with the (owner, range-master, manager?) for a good half-hour, hearing a few of his stories about running the army training ranges for the 40mm grenade launcher and the Anti-Armor lanes, and other random stories ranging from using bazookas to hold beer to blowing up an old VW beetle in a sandpit.

The drive back home and the rest of the evening were pretty uneventful, focusing on relaxing, watching some random shows, and making myself some dinner.  The week was fast approaching, and although I was looking forward to meeting with a friend on Monday to plan out the Asian leg of my world-trip, I was mostly excited about being able to Bike into work this week 🙂