The cry of a man's anguish went up unto God,
"Lord, take away pain!
The shadow that darkens the world Thou hast made;
The close-coiling chain
that strangles the heart; the burden that weighs on the
wings that would soar —
Lord, take away pain from the world Thou hast made,
That it love Thee the more!"
Then answered the Lord to the cry of His world:
"Shall I take away pain,
And with it the power of the soul to endure,
Made strong by the strain?
Shall I take away pity, that knits heart to heart,
And sacrifice high?
Will ye lose all your heroes that lift from the fire
White brows to the sky?
Shall I take away love, that redeems with a price,
And smiles at its loss?
Can ye spare from your lives that would climb unto mine
The Christ on his cross?"
So a couple weeks ago, I decided that I would take a trip to the Acura dealer. A couple of hours later, I walked out with this!
I traded in my lovely Corolla for this baby. I decided to get a manual transmission for a little fun factor when I drive. The problem, I had to get it home from the dealership. I have driven stick before on friend's cars, but this was totally different. I proceded to stall 5 times getting home, and I live about 5 miles from the dealership .
So Last night, while driving my new car to the gym. I was stopped for rolling a stop sign. I cheated, tried to skip going back to 1st gear on a stop sign, stayed in second, rolled through and got caught. I admitted I was wrong to the cop. What got me was the Super Beaverton Officer. The first thing, was that she knew I was from california, because she asked me how long i had been in Oregon. I told her about 7 months. Then she went back to her car and did whatever cops do. When she got back, this is what she told me. "Now i'm gonna be nice, there are cops here in Beaverton that can say this is reckless driving. You're lucky I don't put you in cuffs and take you to jail. I'm gonna let you off and just write you a citation for failure to obey a stop sign." ARE YOU KIDDING ME?? I almost laughed at her when she said that. Don't patronize me and try to "scare" me by threatening to take me to jail for rolling a stop sign. Then saying that you're letting me off easy. Reckless driving for a california roll. Un-believable. I now trust no cops here in Beaverton. To top it off, the fine is $330 dollars. That's more than people speeding 100 on the freeway. The most ridiculous fine ever. I talked to my co-workers, and they told me that they got the same citation and was fined $170. Makes me wonder what's going on here. I've heard that if i show up in court to see the clerk they will reduce the fine since i have no previous record. I might also write a letter to our mayor about this super cop. To makes things short, make complete stops in Beaverton when you're driving a new car. 6 months in my corolla, nothing. Two weeks in my TSX, ticket. Amazing.
Earlier this month I went on a "business trip" to Long Beach. It was basically a conference for the new hires into verizon to meet people and some bigwigs. It was fun, everything paid by the company. So when I reached Long Beach, I took a cab to the renaissance hotel in downtown LB. It's a really nice hotel. To top it off, when I checked in, I found out that they had bumped me to a suite. AWESOME! As I entered the elevator, there were 3 men that walked in with me. All in sharp suits, mid-40's, and me, a 25 year old, wearing a t-shirt and cargo pants. The guy closest to the panel askes every which floor. He taps level 3,4 and 5. I say 12. LOL. The light on the panel didn't light up when he pushed it. Aparently, when on the club level, you need to slide you room key for the elevator to go up to that level. So me, the dumb kid, making a big scene, squeezes my way between them attempting to work the buttons. I couldn't get it to work, so the elevator actually took me back down to the bottom floor. Eventually I got up to my floor and I was right next to the Presidential suite. My room was awesome. It was nice feeling like a big business man, even if it was for 1 day.
Junior strikes again!
Last week, I had a real business trip to Seattle for a presentation on a process that we are adapting in a couple weeks. We drive up using the company car. Now Verizon, likes to save money. The company fleet consists of Dodge Stratus' and Dodge Spirits. We got the Spirit. This bad boy was made in 1991! I didn't even think we'd make it to Seattle. So me, and 3 of my 50 year old co-workers headed out. I point out that they are 50 years old, because I'm the minority on what music we listen to. Since i'm the child, they assume I like RAP, and that wasn't gonna happen. 3 HOURS of classic rock. Now don't get me wrong, I like classic rock. There is just a point where all music just makes you numb.
Seattle in september, is probably one to the most beautiful areas. It's really nice. The sun was out, it was amazin. We checked in to a Best Western hotel for that night. A big step down from my other trip. 2 of my lady co-workers decided not to go eat dinner with the boss that night. They stay to eat at a "chinese" place next to the hotel. I hear chinese food is worse in Everett than Portland, so there was no way I was eating there. It was around 10:30 when we got back from dinner with the boss. As we pulled into the parking lot, I spotted my 2 lady co-workers standing outside. I decided to sneak up on them. I rush up behind them, and yelled just as they were entering the hotel. Then I heard the loudest most piercing sound in my life. The expressions on their face were priceless. Then I see a purse headed for my face. Too late, BAM, right on my nose. I was on the floor, in pain. WHAT DO WOMEN PUT IN THEIR PURSES???!!! My goodness, I guess they need to be prepared for a make-up nightmare. They finally realized it was me when I was rolling on the floor with 2 bags banging. My other co-worker was laughing, and my redneck lady worker didn't stop! If you met her, you'd think she was a redneck too, trust me. I still think it was worth it, the best scare I've ever had. Sore nose was worth it.
When I get home from work, this is who greets me.
Isn't he a cute thing. I call him Lazy. I think that picture says it all.
That's the best pose I could get with him, he's a shifty guy. Just thought I'd share my friend.
Go West Young Man, The OC
So last weekend, keep up with my adventures, I decided to go driving again. I went west and headed toward a car show in Yamhill county. I was almost confortable about living in Oregon, till I got to Gaston( which is where the car show was). I met up with some co-workers, cause they had some cars in the show. They told me I stood out like a sore thumb. I think only yao ming would stick out more than I did that day. Here are some pictures of the show. Some cool stuff.
The 2 cars in the back are my co-workers. I guess you can't really see them. That big lady and her tent is in the way.
I really have no comment about this, except, is that really a plus? What if you fell asleep and forgot you don't have that much head room. You'd never see this In LA, that's for sure.
Thought this was cool. Can't really drive it in the rain though. You can't really tell, but the rearview mirror is on the handle.
Later, I found this wasn't JUST a car show. They had some interesting events that I've never heard of. This wouldn't be oregon if it was just a car show. Here a picture of what I believe is a 1987 toyota corolla.
At first I wondered why a Corolla was even here. Aparently, every year, they have what's called the blow up Contest. What they do, is drain the car of it's oil, and coolant. Then they put a stick on the throttle and let it rev at max rpm. The contest is to guess how long it takes till the engine dies. Now, i duno, but that sounds like the most redneck thing EVER. Another thing. People here, obvioulsy haven't heard of toyota's. More on that later.
Here's a picture after about 7 minutes.
As you can see, they had firemen here just in case. The undercarriage started on fire. Then set the back seat ablaze. Yet, that bad boy kept on running. The fireman had to douse the back seat so it didn't flame up. The car hit the 10 minute mark. Still running. This was amazing. I heard last years car lasted about 4 minutes. As more people started gathering, around the 13 minute mark, the left turn signal turn on magically. Everyone cheered. Final time, 15 minutes and 5 seconds. No oil, coolant, nothing. Throughout the crowd i hear comments. Here's a sample...
"so That's why my neighbor has 5 of those."
"I know what my next car is."
"where's the beer?!?!"
and my favorite...
"I hope my wife didn't see this, she'll think you never have to change the oil."
After that I decided to continue west on to the coast. Until I saw this....
That's right, there are indians in Oregon too! So I got sidetracked for a couple hours. Won 60 bucks at blackjack, and had a nice prime rib dinner, and didn't see one indian anywhere. Kinda interesting if you ask me.
Here's a picture I took on the way to Lincoln City. It was kinda scary standing in the middle of the road, but i like the picture.
Here's a picture of the coast. Once again I'm somewhat disappointed in what I see. There wasn't anything spetacular. My co-workers tell me canon beach and seaside are a lot nicer. The sand was really soft and fine, and it was a nice warm day. The water on the other hand, was FREEZING. Next time i'll go to Canon Beach. I think they taped part of The Goonies there. That will be cool to see.
On the way back home, I saw this sign and had to take a picture.
Now, really, this sounds like a dream come true. It's not just a cleaning service, but you can RENT a wife. What's the point of marriage now. I can just give them a call, and voila. Might have found a gold mine here. All the benefits without the heartache.
And Lastly, I found this picture over the internet.
That is one HUGE BAK CHOI. Or whatever you call it. The fiber in that sucker would be like eating spagetti. Anyone want hot pot?
From what people tell me, Oregon is supposed to be a beautiful state. I've only seen parts of Portland. So this weekend, I decided to just drive, and see where the road takes me. I had 2 basic choices, east or west. North and South are up the I-5 which i've driven and is quite boring farm land. To the east is across I-84 along the Columbia River, and to the west is the famous Oregon Coast. I decided to go east. My first stop, was Mitchell's Point.
This isn't actually Mitchell's Point, it's the parking lot leading to Mitchells Point. It was good enough for me. By this time I was already about 45 minutes from Beaverton, and I had to pee really bad. It was really REALLY windy here. You can't really tell from this picture but i'd say it was around 40 mph gusts. I had no choice so i found some nice coverage to.. release. Now I wasn't really thinking about the wind at this time. That was a mistake. In the middle, a huge gust of wind blows. Now what happens, I declare my GREATEST athletic achievement ever. As the wind blows, I realize my predicament. I step back AND rotate adjusting so I don't spray myself. In short, i'm very proud, and I think I set a distance record. (water bottles in the car save the day for clean hands )
After Mitchells Point I decide to continue east. I saw a sign on the freeway showing Hood River about 30 miles away. I thought that might be a nice place to see. WHen I got there, it was actually a city, and i wasn't yet at Hood river. I drove to the river front and what I found was kinda cool.
Windsurfers, alot of them. It really looks fun, makes me want to try it one of these days.
The entire beach side was filled with windsurfing boards. It was crazy.
update : apparently, Hood River is THE mecca for windsurfing. A co-worker told me Tom -Magnum PI -Selleck bought the island about half mile west of that picture, just to windsurf. Learn something new everyday.
This was how windy it was. Look what the wind is doing to that flag, now imagine what I went through earlier. Now I hope you understand why it's my greatest athletic achievement.
After feeling like the only asian guy in a 50 mile radius I decided to head back the Multnomah Falls which I had passed ealier on the freeway.
this is the view from the parking lot.
Another close picture from the lodging area. As you can see, it's a long way to the top. I decide that I would at least head up to the bridge. Before I get to the bridge I see this sign.
Only 1 mile to the top. I thought that would be easy, I run more than a mile a day at the gym.
Here's a picture of the base of the waterfall I took while on the bridge. It looks like the Bat-cave.
On the trek up, this was all i see, forest. I think if you look closely you can see Bigfoot. By this time I was exhausted. I think I was only half way up too. I realized that 1 mile on a treadmill does not equal 1 mile up a MOUNTAIN. I was sweating so much my solid shirt had become two-tone. I also think I re-absorbed my sweat from my shirt. It was definately gross. When I reached the river, I knew I was close.
This is my favorite picture. You see the river go off to nowhere. I was really tempted to jump into the water to cool off. I didn't want wet socks so i resisted. With all my hard work, this was the payoff.
I was kinda disappointed, just looks like Mitchells Point parking lot, just a little higher. There were only like 8 people on the viewing platform. Yet down below there were probably hundreds. Not many people made it so it was somewhat an accomplishment. I think people thought I was kinda wierd cause I was by myself. I need an exploring partner. People here in Oregon don't see stuff like this. It's kinda like how I lived in LA for 25 years, yet have never seen the Hollywood sign. I guess I gotta do this solo. The Oregon Coast is my next adventure.
So today I had my mid-year review. My boss came down from washington this week to visit. Yes, my boss is located in washington, and yes it's awesome. My review went well. She said my performance has been great and that she only worried if I would stay in Oregon or decide to move back home. I myself wonder why i'm still here, it is quite different. So my review went well, then we talked about the future. In washington, fttp is going to start up there next year. There is an option that I might relocate again to Washington next feburary. That might be fun, I'm thinking I'd probably move again cause seattle is a much better city to live in than Portland. I don't really know what might happen, but I do like options. Everett, Washington, I guess it's better than Beaverton.
I can't really believe that it's already been six months since I moved up here. Time goes by pretty fast. During that time, I've been able to log all the different lawn decorations that I've seen. You might be surprised, or not. Cars, and not just 1 car on the front lawn, many. Rust is a more prevalent occurance than TIRES. I guess I shouldn't be surprised. Who uses a garage to park a car anyways? Next up, we have barbeques. I always thought that barbeques are placed in the backyard, not here. The working barbeques are in the back. The old ones are place out front next to the pickup truck. I'm not talking about 1 barbeque, 3 baarbeques chillin on the front lawn "organized" against the broken-down fence. Now I was thinking what must be going on in these people minds. This is what I think.
Son : Dad! You got us a new barbeque! Awesome!
Dad: Yes son, can you move the old one.
(son moves it to the front lawn.) ( 2 years later )
Son: Dad! You got us a new barbeques! It's huge!
Dad: Yes boy, can you move the old one. Just put it next to the old one.
(son moves it to front lawn by the old one)(2 more years pass)
Son: Father, You bought is a new barbeque!
Dad: Yes, move it by the old ones.
Son: shouldn't we throw away the old ones??
Dad: Why, they still work fine.
Swing sets. Now this is pretty normal, on homes with huge yards. Not when the swing set IS the yard. All swing sets here have a unique color, rust. I guess it's very popular. Last but certainly not least. Sofa's. I'm assuming people just liking chillin on their lawn, with a couple brewsky's. What baffles me is they don't like cushions. Sofa's without cushions. I guess i'd rather sit on a cushion-less sofa than a rusted swing. The motor home probably wins though, gotta be comfortable in there. What am I kidding, it adds square footage.