Friday, July 31, 2009

179

On my way back to 180. Hopefully not because of that banana split last
night.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Lots of User Tests

Yesterday I was pretty busy with user test, checking to see what people thought of the website my team and I are creating and if they were able to use it without any issues. Varnali and I started out with two in the morning in the Fine Arts Building. We came back to the lab for a few minutes and were headed Downtown to do three more. We hopped on the 61C and walked the rest of the way to PPG Place. We had lunch at Einsteins (I miss that place) then went over to the winter garden to test two more users from PPG. After that we met with someone from Verizon Wireless to test as well. Before we headed back to Oakland we stopped at one of the other Downtown places I miss, Dunkin' Donuts. Varnali was excited because she loves their hot chocolate. When we came back to the lab we tested one person who works for Pitt Med School and another who works for Holiday Inn. I went home, had a quick dinner and headed over to Caroline's to see what she thought of our site as well. It's been over a year since I saw her and it was nice to get caught up again. Hopefully we have a Hempstead reunion soon. Finally, I came home and compiled all of the user test results to send off to the rest of the group. Busy Day!

Monday, July 27, 2009

It's Been Busy

Sorry for not posting lately, there has not been much time. But, soon school will be over. Looking forward to that!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Borgata, Atlantic City


Last week went by pretty fast. Tuesday I don't think I did too much. Wednesday I had dinner at Murray Avenue Grill with Bridget, then went to see Batman Dark Night in Schenley Park with her after that. It was really crowded for that movie. It was nice to go, I haven't been to one of the free movies in the park in a long time. People were even clapping for some random things during the movie which was kinda funny but cool at the same time.

Thursday we had a softball game and did pretty bad. I only got to bat once! Ang came to play with us and did not do too bad of a job. After that we headed to Archie's for wings and beer...good as usual. Then of course I had to pack for AC. I hate packing.

Got up on Friday and had breakfast with Megan and Justin at King's in Monroeville. It got more expensive since the last time I was there. After that we were on our way to HER's for the night in Phoenixville (a suburb of Philly.) Along the way, we stopped at Green Dragon which is a big farmers market held every Friday. That place has such good stuff and is really really cheep. I wish is was closer. After that we went to King of Prussia mall while we waited for Harry to be done with work. I did not buy anything! We met HER and had dinner at Champs. It was pretty good. After that we went to DQ and went to see his new townhouse. It looked nice but we could not see the inside since he does not close until this week. It was early to bed after that since Harry wanted to leave for AC at 6 AM the next day.

After a short drive there we met Cin and Harry for breakfast at the Borgata Buffet. It was really good, especially the breakfast pizza. We were not able toget our suite right away so HER was not too happy about that but we decided to go to the boardwalk anyway. I changed in HERs car because I was the only one who wanted to go in the ocean. We took a decent walk along the boardwalk and I went in the ocean for about 1 minute because it was still freezing! We drove back to the Borgata and went to our pool for a while then met Cin and Harry at Wolfgang Puck for dinner. It was good. We then gambled for the rest of the night and I lost money as usual :-(

Thats about it, back to the grind...only 2 weeks of school left!!!! :-)

Parkway

I hate the parkway.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Non Traditional Curry

Gone Flying


Well Kennywood never happened on Friday. Meg and Justin got there and said it was really crowded so we decided not to go. They said that the top parking lot was totally full! Thaat's a lot of people. We ended up going to Rock Bottom instead. The food was okay and had really small portions. The beer was good though. I hung out at Bridget's for a while and got to ride the old people chairs that move people up and down the steps. It was pretty fun :-) Meg and Justin came over after they left for a while and we went to Oh Ya! Everyone only thought it was okay! WTF?? After that just chilled on the porch swing for the rest of the night making fun of Bridget's neighbors how have light up pumpkins on their porch! haha

The next day Meg and I went to Jess's bridal picnic. This was like a shower only guys were invited. When we got to the park we were looking for pavilion 4. We found 3,2,1, then 5 & 6 but could not find 4. We had to call Lauren and she told us were to go. The signs in that park suck. The picnic was good and it was good to see Jess. I am looking forward to the wedding in November in Jacksonville. Saturday night was kinda lame. I didn't feel like doing much so I stayed home and watched movies.

Sunday was the day ZQ took us to Niagara Falls in a 4 person plane. Varnali and I went with him and it was awesome!!! We started out at the Butler County Airport and took off around 12ish. I was surprised that the plane took of so well without going all that fast (this was my first time in a propeller plane.) Once air-born, and after we were at about 4,500 feet, ZQ let me fly! It is a lot harder than it looks. You have to pay attention to so many things. I kept making the plane go crooked and steering off course. Varnali said she was not airsick until I started to fly... I quickly gave the control back over to ZQ, I felt like I was about to wreck the plane. We passed Buffalo, New York on the way, which was cool to see from the air, and also passed by Lake Erie. Flying over the falls was really cool. We could see the mist from pretty far back. We actually even flew over Canada. I didn't think that was allowed, but ZQ said it is fine as long as we don't land. We got some really nice pictures of the falls. We landed after circling the falls three times and walked across the street to a diner for lunch. I was starving. The food was alright but we had to head back to the plane. This time I was in the back and Varnali was co-pilot. When she took the controls, she jostled the plane all around and I was all over the back seat. Good thing I was wearing my seatbelt. After that, she did fine. We landed back in Butler and stopped at Sonic on the way home. I tried a chocolate creampie shake. It was pretty good, but nowhere near as good as coconut. Here are some pictures from our trip:
When I got home, I was not even hungary. Around 9 I decided to take a walk to find something to eat. After walking around Squirrel Hill for a while,I didn't see anything I wanted so I came home and made some peanut noodles.

Today I did laundry. That sucked, but Ang came over to see me for the first time since I've been here for three years! We had some Trader José on the porch and she told me about her new job. She may even come play softball with us on Thursday. Should be fun!

I can't wait to Atlantic City this weekend. Should be fun. Skipping school on Friday to get to Philly early for KOP.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Another Coffee Place

Squirrel Hill is about to get yet another coffee place. No wander I like living here so much!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Short Trip

Our plane. ZQ is doing a pre-flight check before flying us back home
from Niagara Falls to Butler.

Dirt Patch

Meg and I drove past the famous dirt patch today!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Been a nice week

We had a softball game on Wednesday and even though we lost 1-13, I was glad some newbies came out. Varnali and Mary both had hits and it was their first time ever playing. I was proud. I on the other hand had hits but they were kinda crappy, only got to bat twice. Bridget came out to watch...too bad it wasn't a better game for her to see.

Last night Bridget took me out for my first banana split ever. It was pretty good but it was huge. Each one had 6 scoops of ice cream and a bunch of toppings and we EACH got one! After that we went to Southside since Shawn was in from Ohio. We went to Library and Archies for a few drinks. I was not able to get wings at Archies. My stomach was pretty much filled to the max.

Today I have lunch with my team from work Downtown at Palomino. I'm looking forward to seeing them since I haven't actually seen any of them since May. After that I'm going back to school and hopefully getting out early for Kennywood tonight with Bridget, Meg, and Justin. Should be a nice night for it.

The weather this week has been really nice. Lots of sun and no rain. I hope this lasts.

This weekend I'm going to Jess and Tyler's picnic in Butler on Saturday, then on Sunday ZQ is flying Varnali and I to Niagara Falls for lunch. That should be awesome! Hope it doesn't rain so we get to go.

There is less than one month of school left! I can't believe it. This summer semester is going by so fast. I'm about to have a master's degree!

Banana Split

Had my first banana split ever tonight thanks to Bridget. It was
pretty good but huge! There was six scoops of ice cream in that
thing, not to mention all of the toppings.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Confidence Booster

Today I got a nice confidence boost. I was in the gym and this middle aged guy was there who I see from time to time. Here is how the conversation went:

Guy: I saw you down by 300 S. Craig Street yesterday.
Me: Yep, that's where my lab is at.
Guy: Ya, I was in my truck and I saw you from further away and was like "fuck, that dude works out." Then I got closer and saw it was you and said "yep, he does work out."
Guy: You know you can really tell when someone works out.
Me: Thanks

That convo made my morning! :-)

Fat Kid

I'm such a fat kid at heart.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Playing Hooky


Yesterday We joined Anne and her family at a cabin they had at Moraine State Park about an hour north from Pittsburgh. That place is really nice! I decided to get up at my regular time and still go to the gym, then I picked up ZQ and we were on our way. When we go there Anne and Mike made us hamburgers and hot dogs and I even got to eat with a Spider Man spoon since they were low on silverware :-) After lunch we rented a 20' pontoon boat to drive around Lake Author. It was a beautiful day, perfect for boating, the the views of the trees, water, and sky were amazing as we sailed along the water. Unfortunately, no one wanted to swim after that, but no big deal, we had other things to do.
Paul and Carolyn had to leave early because Andrew was getting a little tired, but the rest of us ordered pizza from Pizza Joe's! That was my favorite place at 4 o'clock in the morning freshman and sophomore year at Pitt before they closed the place. So cool that I got to have it again yesterday, the only thing was it was not as awesome as I remember after those nights of drinking...
After dinner, I through some football with Mike and played on the playground with the kids. Playgrounds are nowhere nears as cool as they were when I was a kid. They are all made out of plastic and really low the the ground. Slides are maybe like three feet high and swings about 10. After that, Mike, Anne, and I were having some contests to see who could do what. We were doing pull-ups on the swings and walking on our hands (I was really surprised I was able to walk on my hands, cool!)

We walked back to the cabin and built a fire for the night and I helped Mary and Christian catch lightning bugs. Soon after it was time for me and ZQ to head back to the Burgh. The is so much more I want to do there though,they have a bunch of hiking trails and bike trails that I would love to do. I also wouldn't mind renting one of those cabins in the fall for a group of friends to go up (anyone interested? Electric, water, shower, fridge, oven, heat...they are nice)
That really was a nice day.
*This picture is not mine, obviously it was taken in the fall, but you get the point.

Today was frustrating at school. Nothing was getting done and no one was talking to each other about what they were doing. I decided to leave early because I figured, what's the point of staying?

Did not make it to Rita's the other night but I'm going tonight! I love that place.

Pizza Joes

OMG. Pizza Joes!

Monday, July 6, 2009

The 4th of July is ALREADY over...

Last night Erin came and we went down to see the fireworks. We started off at the food tents then walked across the bridge to Calico Jack's for some drinks. We headed back over to Point State Park about 1/2 an hour before the fireworks were scheduled to start. Non of the other people that told me they were going to be there showed up but we did see Kelsie and her boyfriend. Even though Zambelli did not do them this year, they were really good. We could not hear the music from where we were (right on the steps by the fountain,) but the fireworks themselves were pretty amazing. The show reminded me of the ones they used to have when I was in high school before the city went broke. After that we went bar hopping on the Southside and did drunk Eat 'n Park in Squirrel Hill. That was fun, haven't done that for a while...I had the chicken quesadilla.

Today is Varnalli's birthday so some of us decided to surprise her with a birthday brunch at Square Café in Regent Square. I've been wanting to try this place so I was glad Nicole picked to go there. The place itself was pretty cool and the food was good. I will hopefully stop back again sometime. After that I went to the gym for a much needed workout. I feel like I've been eating like shit recently. The gym made me feel a little better about myself. Then, since today was such a beautiful day I headed over to Schenley Park to lay out and read for a while. It was really nice not too hot or too cold. Also, I may be going to Rita's tonight!

Tomorrow I'm going to some lake about an hour north of Pittsburgh and Anne is going to make our group lunch. Should be fun. Anne said that it is possible to swim in the lake so I hope some other people want to go in. I do for sure.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Sweatpants on the Forth of July!?

Thursday night I did end up going to Austintown. We went to a couple local bars and was pretty fun. The one bar had 30 cent wings and they were surprisingly really hot. Mmmm, they were good. The cool things about the bars in Ohio is there is no smoking at all, I really liked that. Some how I ended up smelling like smoke the next day though...

Now Shawn is moved out of his Oakland apartment and back in Ohio. I can't believe he's gone already. I am going to miss that kid. We had some good times over the last seven years that I've known him since being my freshman year roommate. Although we weren't great friends the whole time, the last four or so years we were and I am going to miss that. Even though I am loosing a best friend, I wish him luck now that he's finally in the working world. Hopefully we will keep in touch and still be friends as time goes on.

Yesterday I had the day off from school for the Independence Day holiday. I woke up around 8:30 at Shawn's house to drive back to PA to meet Carrie for Sandcastle. I decided to put the GPS on "avoid highways" to make for a more interesting ride. The drive ended up being a little bit longer but was worth it because I got to see a lot more than just highway the whole time. I think I am going to use that feature more often now. When I got back, Carrie came to pick me up and it was raining and freezing cold. We got to Sandcastle rode each slide (~30 minutes) and left. After I got home the weather got much nicer...go figure. I went to Skibo for a short workout, came home and took a much needed nap. Then it was time to get ready for dinner in Monroeville with Megan, Justin, and Bridget. We went to some place that brewed their own beer. It was pretty good. I got some brown nut beer...good stuff. They probably had about 20 different kinds. Megan even got a strawberry shortcake beer! We went back to Meg and Justin's to drink some wine and play with Nikki then decided to go to Charley's for ice cream, it was good as usual. I was glad I got to meet Bridget. She seems like a cool girl and am looking forward to getting to know her better.

Today I went to my grandma's since Uncle David, Aunt Chris, and Nate were in town. I had a nice little visit with them. It's been a while since the last time I saw them. Now that I am back home, the clouds seam to have taken over the sky again and it is yet again cold. I am wearing sweatpants! What the hell is wrong with the weather? I want it to be hot! Tonight Erin is coming over and we are going to see the fireworks Downtown and we may meet up with some people from school. May go out after that...who knows.

Happy 4th of July!

B-Y Park

Lots of beatles.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Short Week


This week is only a four day week because of the 4th of July. I can't believe it is already Thursday morning.

After my last post on Sunday I ended up not going to Sandcastle. I did go on a nice long walk to Greenfield and Oakland. I saw some houses for sale but none that I really wanted. Shawn and Kara came over that night with Grand Torino from Red Box. The movie was not as good as I thought it would be.

Monday was somewhat relaxing after class, a nice break. I sat around the apartment for a while and took Kara and Shawn (both Sonic virgins) to Sonic later on. I had a blue coconut cream slush which was not very good. My favorite is still the coconut cream pie shake.

Tuesday we had an awesome softball game! We almost won. At one point we were ahead 8-4! Shawn and Kara came to play with us as well. Everyone had a decent game and Shawn had a crazy catch in the outfield that he had to run across the hill to get. I though he was going to flip himself over the railing... I actually waited for good pitches towards the end of the game and had two decent hits. I hope our team keeps up the good work.

Last night I went to the Pirates game with a bunch of CMU people. We had $5 tickets with $5 work of concession money loaded on them. Not bad seats either, we were in section 128 towards the front. The game would have basically been free if it wasn't for spending $20 at Mullen's before the game! After the game I hopped a bus to Silky's to go say hi to Cam. Haven't seen him for a long time.

Today is Shawn's birthday and I might end up going to Austintown (Ohio) to help him celebrate. Not 100% sure yet but I will probably go if he decided to go out. I owe him some drinks since he bought me a lot for my birthday. Other than that, I'm not sure what I am doing for the rest of the holiday weekend. I may go to Sandcastle with Carrie tomorrow and I am supposedly Erin's pseudo 4th of July date. Hope the fireworks are good this year since this is the first time they will not be Zambelli!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

4 Alarm Chicken Pasta & a Blue Moon

First 1/2 price lunch at Hems. It is so strange in here in the
afternoon. I was the only one in the while place for about 15 minutes!