Musings: Aaaaaaand we’re back

(Funny story…I thought I posted this last Monday)

As expected, the building of my new computer got in the way of my blogging. System building is the type of treacherously satisfying process that consumes the mind with a fear of DOA components and unidentifiable errors. It’s also a process downright saturated with both excitement and trepidation. Nevertheless, I am happily blogging from my new system as we speak and it is absolutely spectacular. In the one day I’ve had to give it a spin with some games, it has performed astoundingly well. The only remaining issue is that my CPU has an unusually high idle temperature, even after removing and reapplying thermal paste. I’ll sort it out and see how it does under load later. Anyway, the more technical blog posts will follow later in the week. For now, it’s time to catch up.

As much as I expected to miss some blog posts while I put the system together, I certainly didn’t expect to feel so guilty about it. Over the weekend, I realized how long it had been since I posted anything and felt terrible. I felt like I was slipping away from blogging, allowing my blog to devolve into one of the thousands that seemed like good ideas for a few weeks but were ultimately left to decay. At work today, I saw the little “Site Stats” link for my blog in my history but felt too ashamed to check it. If anyone had been checking in since I stopped blogging, I didn’t want to know about it. After a hardy workout after work, I now feel like I’m ready to get back to business with this writing mumbo jumbo.

So what have I been doing since we last spoke, you are undoubtedly not asking. Let’s start with Labor Day weekend. This summer, for some unknown reason, has been the fastest of my life. I’ve only made it to the beach twice and in my brain, summer should just be kicking off. Unfortunately, the world continues its refusal to conform to my will, and September has come kicking through my face when I least expected it. Needless to say, Labor Day weekend became a symbol for summer’s last stand.

Leading up to the long weekend, I was trying to meticulously plan a weekend that would encompass everything that I could possibly want to do in the summer. Go to the beach, visit my grandparents, tour NJ, visit NYC, etc. Sadly, as good as I am at planning, doing everything was a logistical impossibility. Instead, the three best friends decided to tackle the latter two ideas with a road trip to NJ and a daytrip into Manhattan to check out the Harry Potter exhibition (on its last weekend in town) and stroll around the Big Apple.

After having a blast replacing my car battery on Saturday morning, I begrudgingly began the drive to NJ with the TBFs. After some fancy driving around Baltimore, which was overwhelmed by the Grand Prix, we made good time back to my home state. We quickly dropped our bags at my house and drove over to Double Trouble for a stroll. After all, a trip to Bayville isn’t complete without some DT time.

You may not be able to tell, but I'm thrilled to be home.

Afterwards, we headed back home for dinner. As usual, we consumed a delightful dinner (grilled onions, squash, and london broil) courtesy of my step father. Then, the three of us and my younger sister headed out to Seaside for a little boardwalk stroll. On the way, we stopped by Rich’s to get some ice cream (the canoli sundae was awesome but nearly killed me). After spending so many nights at the Seaside Heights boardwalk in high school, it’s definitely interesting going back as a bit more of an adult. As awful as it sounds, it’s nice to have a bit more age and maturity on your side; it makes looking down on the scum that much more justified.

After the boardwalk, we returned to my house and retired for the evening. The next morning, we got up bright and early and headed out for Hoboken around 7 AM. On the way, we grabbed bagels at Oh What A Bagel. Mmmmmm…Jersey Bagels.

Where was I? Oh yes, driving to Hoboken. We got to Hoboken around 9 AM, parked, and took the PATH train into Manhattan. We strolled around the Penn Station area for a while before heading to Discovery Times Square for the HP exhibition. I wish we had some pictures to show, but sadly, photography was prohibited. It was very cool to see so many costumes and props from the movies though. It taught me two things: I am much larger than the entire cast of the HP films and the props are detailed as hell.

After the exhibition, we began our eating tour of NYC. We grabbed some pizza by Penn Station and started walking towards a Chinese noodle place that one of my coworkers suggested. By the time we were nearly there (it was down by the Brooklyn bridge and I prefer walking everywhere whenever possible) we decided to take a detour to Pomme Frites instead. I was severely dehydrated by this point, so I pounded a bunch of water with my fried potatoes and we decided to call off the noodles.

WHAT DO YOU MEAN ALL THIS SODIUM IS JUST GOING TO INCREASE MY THIRST?!

After temporarily giving up on eating and checking out Noho and Soho, we swung by Magnolia Bakery in Greenwich Village for some cupcakes. Several pounds later and severely exhausted, we decided to forego the walk back to Penn Station and instead caught the PATH from the nearby Christopher Street Station.

'Nuff said

When we finally managed to liberate my car from the parking garage in Hoboken, we hopped on the Turnpike to head back to Rockville; however, we still had to make a final, obligatory NJ stop: a diner. For the sake of efficiency, we decided to not drive out of the way to my regular stomping grounds and instead hopped off the Turnpike to check out Marlton Diner. Two pork roll, egg, and cheese’s, a cream-chip beef on toast, and some coffee’s later, I was ready to never leave Jersey ever again. Sadly, I need to earn a living, so we drove back down and got to Rockville a little after 1 AM.

The next day I chilled in the morning and stopped by College Park to tailgate for the Miami game for a bit. Almost all of my old roommates, including the ones who live pretty far away now, were there, so it was a jolly time in spite of the rain. After that, last week was mainly devoted to building my computer and modding my headset (to be covered soon) and last weekend was spent straight chillin. I’m getting wordy, so goodnight!

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Epic Adventures: Back to the New-ture (Jersey)

Sorry, that title was a stretch. I apologize. Nonetheless, in the words of Bruce:

Tonight I’m gonna take that ride.
Across the river to the Jersey side.

Except that it’s tomorrow night. Stop pretending like all wordplay, metaphors, and references were made for your sole satisfaction. Regardless, those lyrics manage to get me stoked every damn time.

With my 24th birthday taking place next Monday, Jenny and I are making the trek back to my home state tomorrow evening after work for a bit of celebration. Along with the obligatory dinner out with my dad and grandparents and listening to the Boss on repeat, I plan on celebrating with the following activities:

  1. Going for a run in Double Trouble
  2. Eating steak from the German butcher, grilled veggies, and Jersey corn
  3. Staying up way later than I normally allow myself, solely because I want to sit around in my old room
  4. Eating a proper bagel. Make that a proper bagel with pork roll, egg, and cheese on it.
  5. Kayaking across the bay to IBSP with my stepdad
  6. Lounging on the unguarded beaches, tossing a frisbee, body boarding, and getting battered by waves
  7. Crushing a caramel apple from the boardwalk
  8. Eating quality pizza
  9. Consuming a single beer with my parents
  10. Pounding a cake

And hopefully many more things that I can’t think of at the moment. I hope you all enjoy your weekends as much as I do.