Wednesday, December 8, 2004

what an interesting and weird dream

one thing that I do right before I go to bed is drink 2 glasses of water. this will insure me that i won't wake up in the morning with a dehydration headache. and also, it helps me get out of bed in the morning. it usually works better than an alarm clock.

so i find myself in rimac, needing to go to the restroom. i walk in, and i'm in a light blue tiled bathroom that must be around 3000 square ft. it resembles my high school shower room than a bathroom. and the only things there were 50, maybe even a hundred gigantic public urinals the size of bathtubs different sizes and shapes just scattered in a crowded space all over the restroom (these urinals were the ones you find in subway stations where its one gigantic urinal for 5 people to use at once). so not being a fan of these multi person systems, i'm walking towards the end trying to find a normal one. so i finally find one in the back. and by this time, i needed to go pretty bad. and you can imagine the amount of pressure i need to relieve by now. so once i get started, i feel the freedom of just gradually increasing pressure to the nozzle. it sounds like a high pitched whispering steam vent that's sounding more violent by the second. It almost seems endless. and as this is going on, this dream gets weirder. i look over the urinal, and there is a group of 6 girls sitting in a lunch table having an entertaining conversation of size of male organ. and they are all impressed by the sound that i'm making on my side of the wall as one comes over to take a peek and complement me as i'm wrapping things up. and from here i don't remember too much other than she somehow ends up in the back seat of my car. and as the dream starts getting good, i wake up and I see I'm once again going to be late for work, and I have to go take a piss really really bad.

Monday, December 6, 2004

what a joke

so i've been watching the reality series "The Next Great Champ". It's like American Idol, but for boxers, and without the bad auditions. Well, the winner "Otis Griffin" was supposed to fight a title fight on Dec 3rd, but they pulled the fight last minute because the challenger was not an Olympic medalist, or some bullshit like that. I mean, what a load of bullshit. What does that have to do with anything? I just wanted to see the great black hype, Otis Griffin, get his inexperienced glass jawed ass knocked out. He shouldn't have won anyway since he was officially eliminated fairly. The show lost a lot of credibility when they brought him back because it was a close fight. bull. You don't see them bringing back other eliminated boxers that had closer fights. He was the most rested going in to the last fights. I'm willing to bet Otis Griffin has already had his 15 rounds of fame.

Monday, November 29, 2004

My photogallery now fades into the next picture when slide show is enabled. Check it out:

go directly to slide show

Monday, November 22, 2004

almost got snowed in at Vegas!

we woke up sunday, and noticed it was raining, in Las Vegas. it was a fair and normal amount of drizzle. but still odd that we were in the middle of a desert and it was raining. we ate at the treasure island buffet for brunch, and got onto the freeway exactly around 1pm. immediately entering the freeway, we noticed heavy congestion. it was puzzling because why would the freeway be crowded when there is absolutely nothing ahead for the next 50 miles at the very least. so i guessed it must be a bad car wreck up ahead. So about an hour into the drive, the drive goes from being bad, to impossible. we are just inching forward, so I call my friends in the other car who got about a good 15 minute head start and see how they are doing. they said we should be start moving in about 15 minutes. there was nothing to explain the traffic, other than a car on the shoulder on jacks. so 15 minute later, we started moving. then 2 minutes after that the traffic slowed down again. we're continuing to inch forward in the rain, and andrew points out all the snow around us. I look forward into the mountains, and I'm like, yep, that's snow alright......and then it starts snowing (well ice slush coming down like snow). and then I look on the side of the road and see the whole side of the road and beyond covered in snow. that's what andrew was originally pointing out. so it started making some sense. maybe some people who have never driven on snow before are slowing down because they have never driven under these conditions. I certainly never have. a few miles down, i see that people without much traction are starting to spin their wheels a lot and are barely moving forward (if they are moving forward at all). and soon it starts happening to me. so now its crystal clear why we aren't moving forward. people are pretty much stuck going uphill on ice. so it keeps on getting progressively worse, and realize we are spinning our tires more and more, and even have problems catching even a hint of acceleration trying to go down hill. looking around, its not just a little bit of snow, it's a lot of snow. a good 4+ inches on the side of the road and the desert. after we made it to the apex of the hill (about 2 hours of just spinning our wheels on ice), we made it through the worst of it, and even though everyone is traveling about 30 mph, we couldn't be more happy to be moving. we thought about heading back to vegas for a while, but luckily there were no exits, until we got through the worst of it. it snowed and rained for the remainder of our drive up until LA. Luckily, even with heavy snow, the road wasn't icy for the remainder of the drive, and we made it to Ontario Mills mall in just about 7 hours. Probably spent the first 4 hours moving through the first 60 miles. I made a quick stop Nguyen's house to check out his new dog (boston terrior). and made it home exactly 10:30. we asked the gas station lady at barstow and she said it only snows every 10 to 20 years. so we were the lucky (or the unlucky) ones.

pics can be found here (Vegas 2004):

As always, Vegas was a lot of fun. I didn't have a lick of urge to gamble other than join in on the fun. So I played some slots here and there when I had a few minutes to spare. I was also too tired or didn't have much time to gamble, so it wasn't a bad thing. We checked out the Star Trek experience at our hotel (Hilton). We ate at the Bellagio Buffet (they have tuna and salmon nigiri and poke now!) for dinner on Saturday. Then checked out Studio 54. We all had 2 drinks each, and it was a little bit too much for at least 5 of 6 of us. Yes, we are all lightweights.

Next time when its raining in Vegas on a cold weekend, I sure am gonna check the weather reports before I start driving.

Monday, November 15, 2004

Completely and totally disappointed

Just learned this morning that Gran Turismo 4 won't offer online play. They pulled it so they can offer it with GT5 that will be available with PS3. That is total bullshit. The only reason I got my network adapter, and the only purpose of my network adapter was going to be to play Gran Turismo 4 online. I never got into online Socom (or socom at all for that matter), and the online play in midnight club II was total shit. I heard that online play on Burnout 3 was really good, but Burnout 3 isn't Gran Turismo. Man, this blows. I've been waiting to play online Gran Turismo ever since Gran Turismo 3.

Monday, November 8, 2004

Friday, November 5, 2004

this post was lost. and i'm tombstoning it that i'm writing over it. basically I hate Bush.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

yay! GTA: San Andreas is out today.

I have still been obsessed about improving my photo gallery. It is now formatted to work on a screen at 1154 x 864 resolution. If the user is running a 1024 x 768, hitting F11 on the keyboard should make the page fit nice. the reason for the page having a higher resolution demand than most is that i'm aiming to make this photo gallery gear towards digital photography, not just any gallery page.

I've been adding a lot of features for the viewer and the owner of the gallery (these are transparent). some cool things are that the page now pulls exif data off the jpegs and displays them. so when you view the picture, you can see what camera at what focal length, aparture, shutter speed and iso was used at what time and date. the owner of the gallery only has to upload file (or even whole folders/galleries) and doesn't need to worry about uploading resized pictures since the resizing is done on demand on the server now. i've also worked on the look of the pages somewhat. a lot of behind the scenes stuff to work out the querkyness when you have existing objects or requesting things that have odd characters in the filename. still got a list of things to do, but the heart of it I would say is 85% there.

Friday, October 22, 2004

I've changed the location of my photo gallery. instead of: (old) (new)

random images:

cleaned up tons of code html, java, and asp code today. arranged files and locations of pictures for better site organization. made the link to the comment a text link instead of an image of text.

i'm gonna work on a way to caption the images by renaming the images next

Man I love this stuff

I love creating things that are useful. That's why I like designing web pages and stuff. But what I love more deep down is designing stuff that involves code. I love the whole process of coming up with an idea, designing it, writing it, and seeing it work. And when it works well, I can't be any prouder. I can honestly say I've always had a passion for this stuff. Somehow when I got to UCSD, I had forgotten what it felt like to design and create. All they assigned us were dumb and pointless data processing chores. What they should have done was tell us, write any program that demonstrates your ability to incorporate this new learned concept. And I would have had a ball showing off my creative side. So I was delighted when I took the CogSci courses that let me design web pages. Which is part of the reason I steered away from CompSci to CogSci. That and the impossible hurdle that was also known as physics at UCSD, it was clear to me at the time that it was the fastest way to graduate with a BS, and quite possibly the only way.

So I don't regret my decision, but I think doing a job that demands this type of work from me is my calling, and something I have a passion for.

So I've been working pretty much non stop on my photo gallery that I revived since my hard drive crash 1.5 years ago. Since my work these days includes a lot of ADSI scripting for Windows 2000 databases, I've picked up a lot of core concepts and methods in visual basic. So this made writing and editing ASP a lot easier. javascript seems to be a mix of C and vb, which makes it easy for me. Working with the photo gallery, I've learned countless things and got to experience a lot of things for the first time. Like using cookies to store information, making queries to the sql/mdb database, transfering variables to another page (4 different methods), working with database tools, and a bunch of more stuff I can't remember. i also created today an asp page that will look inside a directory for images, and randomly output that image on demand. what's cool is that it looks in the same folder where i store the 320 x 200 images for the photo gallery so i only need to update one folder. you can just specify this url in a img src tag, and have the page choose a random image every time you load, which is what i've set up my blog today for the rando images. its much better than what I had about 1.5 years ago before the crash since that involved a server side program that just copied a random image into a jpg file with a specific name. it was a lot more load intensive, and it was always writing to my harddrive which i hated. now that i'm pretty much done with creating the gallery, i need to take some nice pics that will let both gallery grow. and since i'm pretty much done writing all the ASP I need, I need to have another idea of creating something. what to do next... maybe i'll write all the code for my blog from scratch and host it on my server. hmm...seems too easy of a task, even though it would be nice to not rely on blogger and Haloscan...

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

The photo gallery is back!

So I managed to find some old versions of the photo gallery in asp that I was working on back then before my hard drive crashed. And I've been working non stop in the last day tweaking it and adding new features like commenting. I saw the need to revive the gallery when I saw that jusspress just wasn't doing justice to the pictures I can now take with the FZ20. So without further ado...

Michael's Photo Gallery

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Zoom Zoom

People might say I'm overcompensating but I guess 12x from 2x is a big leap. I've been eyeing the Panasonic Lumix FZ10 for a year now. And there were a few times that I did try to purchase it. But either I was a day late on the deal or Frys just ran out of stock. I'm glad I held out because the FZ20 just came out and I got it on Tuesday. This thing has a 12x optical zoom with an aparture of F2.8 across the whole zoom range. Manual zoom, manual shutter control with an impressive image stabilizer. Couple that with an awesome LCD and EVF, and an adjustable powerful flash (up to 7 meters), this is a photo hobby entusiast's dream short of a SLR. Even the pros will agree this is a fun camera. I can't wait until my 1GB card comes in the mail.
We need a new slogan for salads

Instead of the option to Super Size, Biggie Size, double meat our food, we need a healthy catch phrase to make our food more healthier. Since I rarely ever cook at home now, I've realized I don't have the opportunity to eat 8 servings of fruits and vegetables. V8 is an alternative, but damn, why do they have to make that so salty? I get enough salt as it is eating my canned soup and hot pockets (even though they are the healthier lower sodicum choices). So this is why I'm going to try to get a salad, and at the very least get a side of salad when I go out to eat every time. I throw out uneaten lettuce, salad bags, and vegetables so often I just realized its just pointless to buy them. So I gotta make use of that opportunity to eat the vegetables when someone else prepares it for me.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

The Nightmare

I have this reoccuring dream that its my last quarter of school and I'm enrolled in 4 classes. 2 of the classes are a breeze, but then it occurs to me that one of the classes that I'm taking, an English class (not even a requirement for my major in the reality), is a class I'm not going to pass. Simply because I haven't been to that class since the beginning of the quarter, and it is now week 8. I have simply put off that class, and just forgot about it because I was busy with everything else. Since its a small class, even if I tried to make up the work, the TA teaching the class wouldn't even give me that option unlike some of the classes at UCSD where you can still pass without attending a single lecture. Then it also occurs to me that the 4th class is another class I have no chance in passing. The dream seems so real, and I get so stressed out. Then I remember that I have already graduated. And I must have graduated since I remember my graduation vividly. Then I wake up.

What is interesting is that even in really bad similar scenarios in life, most of the times you usually can find a solution as long as you cram and work hard to meet the deadline. But during this dream, it is not even an option to cram and put all my effort into it. My only option is to admit defeat and realize I need to stay for another quarter of classes. It feels like the whole world is caving in, every single time.

Monday, October 11, 2004

The Double Double

Yes, 2 posts in one day. This weekend, a group of friends made it to the Qualcomm party after scoring a bunch of tickets. The party was at the first 4 floors of the Hyatt. There were appetizers and deserts on the 1st floor along with a big dance floor and a live band. Second floor was for pictures, and a place for people to sip tea in a well lit ball room/wedding reception type area. The third floor we never checked out. I think it was an artsy type of area to look around. And the 4th floor had a James Bond theme with a big area for casino type gambling. You get some chips and you can buy raffle tickets with it.

The food there was good but it could have been so much better. The paella they were serving had a great amount of seafood and an exorbitant amount of scallops in there, but it was prepared with haste. Paella is like a risotto, and you need to give it a lot of TLC for it to come out good. But if prepared too quickly its mushy and broken down on the outside, and crunchy on the inside. Too bad I'm not much of a drinker cause the open bar at ever corner was all that you can ask for. The thing I enjoyed the most were the chocolate fountains. It was a cold fountain of chocolate but the chocolate wasn't too sweet but bursting with flavor. When you put that chocolate on a little piece of pound cake, you just wanted to close your eyes and let your eyes roll to the back of your head while happy synapes in your brain were popping off like mild fireworks.

On Saturday, I met up with a bunch of people to go to Sushi Deli. We waited for quite a bit. Probably an hour or so. My favorite thing to get there is the Raymundo roll. Its kinda like a rainbow roll, except it has spicy Tuna instead of the california roll. You can make that better by substituting the spicy tuna with the spicy salmon. To me, its the perfect roll. After Sushi Deli, we went to the Yard House for some drinks. We ordered their chicken nachos, and wow. It was the best nachos I've ever had. The tomatoes were fresh. The guacamole was perfect. The chips were freshly fried. The chicken was well seasoned. The cheese was well proportioned. From now on, if I want nachos, I'm gonna have to go to the Yard house.

On Sunday, had Sunday brunch to celebrate Nik's birthday at Jasmine's. It was my first time at Jasmines. It was a really nice place and the food was pretty cheap. One thing that stood out was that the jasmine tea was much better than the jasmine teas I've had at other places. I guess if you name yourself Jasmine, you can't skimp on the quality of the jasmine tea you'll be serving. I wasn't aware that we were going to get charged for the tea, but apparently you do there. Luckily Eric new someone that worked there and he was able to sign off on the tea for us. After brunch, we went to Sea Port village, got some ice cream and walked around.

After that, I took it easy and was in the mood to watch a few movies. I first saw I Robot that I enjoyed quite a bit. I like movies that are about the futures since I'm a gadget freak. Then I saw Super Size Me and Troy. I thought Troy was good, but forgettable. Quite ironic because the movie is about Achilles who fights in the war because he wants to be remembered through the ages. I also saw Shaun of the Dead and Dodgeball also. Both movies were pretty forgettable.

Super Size Me Not

I got a chance to finally see the documentary Super Size Me. Even though the documentary was informative, I fear a lot of people will still walk away by grasping the wrong concept. Here's my interpretation of the movie.

First, here is the given of all fast food restaurants. Minimizing calorie content is on the bottom of the priority list for these places. We live in America where bigger is better. And if one restaurant is offering more food per dollar, the other restaurants have to compete. Another thing they do is they load their food as much carb and fat as possible. Its a cheap but effective way to make their food taste better. If you don't do both, you might as raise a white flag in the fast food industry race. So I can't really blame McDonalds for continuing to increase the sizes of what one everyone knows to be a complete meal (burger, fries, and drink). This combined with the extra fat and carbs is a bad combination.

From here on, I think we can seperate people into two major groups. The ones who can see that the portions have grown to outrageous sizes, and the other group that hasn't seen this increase in portions of food because its been so gradually applied to the fast food industry.

Speaking from personal experience, the very few times I've gotten things Super Sized or Biggie Sized, I remember not being able to finish the french fries, and throwing alway a nearly full tub of soda. Seriously, how often does a normal person finish the super sized fries and drink? To be honest, I have never seen someone finish a Super Sized drink before watching the movie Super Size Me. Say you were brave enough to finish the buger and fries with a few gulps of coke. You'd probably not have an appetite to eat for the entire day. But Morgan Spurlock does it 3 times a day for 30 days. By force feeding yourself to prove a point that you can gain a lot of weight with fast food like that you can gain a pound a day easily. Its apparent that he did everything possible to gain as much weight as possible especially when you watch him eat the whole cake at the very end.

Sure there are the few exceptions who have just totally fallen victim to the rhythem of McDonalds and the likes of continuing to increase the portions of the food. These people are the ones in real trouble. If they finish each meal then continue finishing the meal served to them even though the sizes of the meal keeps getting bigger. Just consuming an extra 500 calories more than you're used to on a daily basis will equal to an extra pound a week.

Some quick math:

Consuming 3500 extra calories a day will make you gain a lb a day. the nutritionists kept telling Morgan that he was consuming double the calories he needed on a daily basis (approximately 3000 extra calories). He ends up gaining ~25 lbs. (3000 calories * 30 days = 90000 total calories. 90000 calories/3500 = ~25 lbs.) Its no coincidence. If Morgan went to Subway and ate 6000 calories a day, he probably have gained the same amount of weight. If he had his vegan chef girlfriend feed him 6000 calories a day, he would have gained the same weight. His LDL and other stuff might have not been that bad. I'll give him that.

So what's McDonalds guilty of? McDonalds is as guilty as everyone in the fast food/excess food business (Wendy's, Burger King, Jack in the Box, Claim Jumpers) for gradually increasing the size of our meals just for business competition without the care of the health of the people in the US. This change in meal sizes has had a global affect of what everyone (at least in the US) thinks are regular portions of food that even in our own home cooking, we have forgotten what one serving is and we just end up eating more at every meal.

This movie is a really good reality check that tells us that we need to start consuming the right amount of food, not what we're being served.

One little weird thing about the movie. There was this girl who was apparently over weight that Morgan interviewed when Jarrod (from the Subway commercials) came to her school. I don't know how she got this idea into her head, but apparently Jarrod convinced her that the only thing that worked for him and the only thing that will work for her is eating Subway at least twice a day. And she started kinda tearing up with her mom because she said didn't have the money to go to Subway twice a day. I thought that was an odd little part of the movie that didn't have a place. I thought it was put in there for humor and only that. Unless Jarrod is really making these claims. Does Subway really have their hands that far up Jarrod's ass? Even Jarrod should know you can easily get fat eating 2 Subway sandwiches a day for sure if that's all you plan on doing to lose weight. If that girl interpreted Jarrod's message that way, he really needs to change his speech because people are getting the wrong idea.

Monday, October 4, 2004

The Twenty Bucks DVD Conspiracy

This is really interesting. I've been wanting this indie movie called Twenty Bucks to come on DVD. And to my amazement, it was supposed to come out on DVD on 9/21/04. Looking around on release date, no one seemed to have it available. Then a week later, Amazon removes the object from its database. Google had it cached, and some sites still have the cover art for the DVD. Usually when something is delayed production, they just make it so you can't order it. They don't completely remove it. So what's going on here? This movie along with Robin Hood: Men in Tights are the unicorns in my DVD collection. I wrote up a list of DVDs I wished to buy when they became available. Aladdin was on that list too, but its being released tomorrow. Star Wars trilogy was released last week. Out of the 100+ movies that have been on that list, those 2 are the only ones left. Robin Hood is another weird one. Its available in Region 2 (PAL), but not available here. Here's an interesting article about PAL, NTSC, and SECAM. Its funny how the NTSC standard originally had really bad hue consistancy problems and how people were saying NTSC stood for Never The Same Color. It actually stands for National Television Standards Committee.

Thursday, September 30, 2004

one post for september

haven't really done much this month. my back is still not up to shape to do anything other than go to work and sit all day. i did start stretching a few days ago and its helping lots. i noticed that my abs and calves are super tight. just stretching these every days seems to be making a really noticable positive difference.

just found out today on cnn's front page that the medication i've been taking, Vioxx, has just been pulled. i guess it'll have to force me to change my medication after all. its a good thing since my body has adapted to all the anti-inflammatory effects of Vioxx, and it feels like it hasn't been doing squat for at least the last two months.

one other thing i started doing this month is play online poker. i finally put some money into an account and have been trying different games. Ring games from penny NL, to .02/.04 - 1/2 Limit. Also playing the Sit & Go mini tourneys. I think I've figured out how to stay in the positive in different games of Hold em, but what hurts my bankroll is the lack of patience. I know what not to do, but I don't follow through. because even in these small stakes, the yield is not really too significant if you play in a controlled manner. i think once this month is over, I'm gonna try to play in a $1-$3 big tournament at least once a week. maybe a few times a week if I'm up to it. I just need to win one and I'll be up at least $1000. that'll be nice.

so I'm gonna continue stretching and this should help me get back to my usual activities. i wanna go back to the gym. i miss it quite a bit.

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

one more post before the month is over

so it finally looks like my back is showing signs of improvement this week to where i'm not limping into the office. and maybe by next week, i can start slowly making my way to the gym again. every time something happens to my back, i have to take about a month off, and i feel like my muscles are whitering away and turning into soft jello. too bad it happened at the worst time of the year...twice this summer. i always look forward to not having to wait around in rimac. hopefully this exercise fad has blown over some and people will be doing diets like atkins or the likes off to where they won't need to come to the gym. no disrespect to the ones who are committed to the gym on a long term basis. i'm only complaining about the ones who make it to the gym every day for the first week or two, wear themselves out, then never come again...achieving nothing while crowding the gym for everyone. well, i'll have to see how my back feels next week.

i'm not's 2 years older than people who i used to think was really old when i was about 16 years old. i celebrated my birthday at pampas argentine grill. 22 people including myself and erik and judy's baby were able to make it. pampas used to be a place where you could get a prime grade filet mignon for about $ awesome deal, and now they charge $30 which is what you expect to pay, and makes that restaurant just another restaurant you can only go to on special occasions....not when you're craving filet mignon. pity. the restaurant has new management...and it just happens that the new owner is nguyen's friend at his other work...who has been given this restaurant by his aunt. wow, i wish i had an aunt that gave me my favorite steak house as a gift. can't blame him for the price increase, and it doesn't look like it hasn't really hurt their business at all. i just can't see myself going there any more than once or twice a year.

another place i've been frequenting is sycuan for their prime rib buffet. it used to be $12 which used to be a steal, and now its $15, which is still good deal for all you can eat prime rib (certified angus prime grade meat). now that the casinos are smoke free, it just makes it all that much better. another reason i will go here other than bully's is that i'm tired of their shit for service. i've figured out how to get what i want from bullys. first you gotta go there, put your name down. then when they try to seat you in the back patio, you gotta tell them you want a booth instead. they used to give you pretty good bread. then they decided to not make fresh bread any more, and give you some day old bread whenever possible. now you actually have to pay for bread, and people usually say yes when they ask you if you want garlic bread before you had a chance to look at your menu's. the garlic bread is fresh, but surprise, you are paying for it. then when you order meat, only chance you have is to order it rare. you want it medium rare? they are happy to take an old piece from some roast, microwave it, then serve it to you medium well. they figure, either you won't care, or you won't complain. they have done this to me 2 out of 3 times. when they bring it out, it is obviously apparent without even cutting into it that its no where near medium rare, and its a piece that's been sitting out for a while. what i do is cut into it, then let them take it back. i gotta give them some negative incentives for doing this every time some way or another. so the second piece is always usually up to par in what they should be serving. when you compare the two side by side, you scratch your head and wonder what the fuck are these jokers trying to get away with? since i do enjoy both medium rare and rare when eating prime rib, i usually go with the rare, so that they know they won't be able to get away with pulling that shit. and even still, they try. and its easy to convince them that you didn't get what you ordered when they serve you a medium well piece when you asked for rare. they just have no grounds to say something like "that looks rare to me". i'll still make them place it on the table, and cut into it and make sure no one is getting this piece. so this is the "routine" i have to deal with every time i go to bully's. and ever since i've found out about the prime rib at sycuan, you can see why i haven't been to bully's since. i gotta admit that the prime rib at sycuan is half the times too overcooked. but the other half the times it is fantastic. and for what they are charging and no bullshit, i'll gladly take that instead.

so i went off on a tangent a little bit. had a great time at my birthday dinner. played poker afterwards at travis' place. here's my critique on some early eliminated players. eric was surprisingly agressive like a pro, but should have been more selective on the opportunity on when to be agressive. for example, if you get dealt pocket A's every time, when you try to buy out every pot, people will call you with nothing, and hit a nice flop to take probably most of your money. also, even though you have a good hand, you gotta know when to fold when you know you're beat. nik and barbara weren't in the position to play their A game since they couldn't stay long. but its not like the chips were folded to me. at the end, while holding pocket Aces, there was a 50/50 chance I would have lost, and they would have had an overwhelming chip lead when they were both 1 card to go for a flush (different suits for babs and nik). so even with half the deck against me, i won the 50/50 coin flip, and pretty much doubled up. and from there, i was up to about 50% of all the chips in play. after that, everyone played a solid game...except for maybe the last hand in play heads up. i ran into some serious luck hitting pocket aces 2 more times where it held up and paid off where i was able to finish 1st place. i guess the turnout couldn't really have ended better.

one thing i realized when i was at a birthday party was that i need to get on the ball and find myself a gf. i think it all boils down to laziness. i look around and half of my friends are very well matched with their significant other while i don't have a clue where to start looking. i don't want to be the "family friend" that needs to make rounds for holiday dinners because i'm the only one without my own family when i'm 35. that's definitely not where i want to be in 10 years. i'm not saying i'm aiming to get married any time soon, but i at least have to go through this process of trial and error, also known as dating to find out what i'm really looking for. same thing for my career. i don't see it going anywhere if i'm just continuing to be reactive rather than proactive and just letting the day pass by. where is my hunger for success? this is a puzzle that needs to be solved.

next post, i'll get to posting my trip to australia in detail with some pictures that i've been meaning to get to.

Sunday, August 8, 2004


i got some accupuncture again on friday, and by saturday, i was well enough to get around to taking the tour to the jeanolan caves. we learned that the tour was about 8 hours of sitting and 2 hours of walking/standing which wasn't bad at all. the cave tour was a cool experience. i don't think i've ever been in a cave system, and it did feel a bit too commercialized, but i don't think i was in any shape to do anything like swin under a rock and squeeze through a hole just yet, so it worked out nicely. saw some wildlife along the way. i'll put a more detailed post later.

after coming back from a long day, we actually made a brief stop at the hotel and went on the train to johno's parent's house. there was a really anticipated rugby match that night, new zeland vs's a huge rivalry much like UCLA vs USC when it comes to anticipated rivalries, but on a much more grander scale. so we got there and hung out with people we met last sunday, and watched the second half of the game. the australian team won which was a big bonus that put the whole country in a good mood. on our way back home we made a quick stop to take some night shots of the opera house and the bridge, which came out fantastic. it was an awesome way to end the trip. woke up 7am the next day, got on the plane to head back to the US. sitting here and typing this, its really hard to imagine that i was so far away just a under a day ago. the plane ride back home went much faster due to the fact that they were actually showing movies i wanted to watch. first saw day after tomorrow, then walking tall, man on fire, ladykillers, and shrek 2. by the end of shrek 2, we were back at home. my dad picked us up from LAX, ate some lunch at home, and then drove back with ray and my brother. i got so tired on my drive back that i think there was a split second that i was actually asleep behind the wheel. where you blink, and upon opening your eyes you remember you're on the freakin' freeway. i realized i really needed to take a nap before any more driving, and luckily we were close to my brother's dorm. so i took about a 45 minute nap there, then headed towards SD. when i got back, i made some phone calls that i missed, then passed out for 4 hours.

i did catch a cold on the last day in australia. i guess i can be thanksful for that, even though no cold would have been nicer. hopefully it'll blow over by tomorrow... more details about the trip later when i have some time to regain my thoughts.

Thursday, August 5, 2004

damn, why now?

well, my back problems doesn't seem to be getting any better. i did manage to get some acupuncture today, but it hasn't been the miracle i've been looking for. its definitely not as bad as when i hurt my back a month or two ago. actually i don't think my back is hurt, just inflammed...walking has never been all that comfortable since surgery. i'm guessing walking a few miles daily is not really something my body is capable of doing. maybe if i could just take it easy for 2 days every time i walked about 5 miles that day, it would be just fine and dandy, but it sucks doing that when all i have here is about a week. well, i'll be getting some more accupuncture today, and hopefully i'll be good enough to go explore the jeanolan caves...

Wednesday, August 4, 2004

i wish i can stay here long enough to pick up the australian accent

what is it that the australian or european accents are cool, and all the asian accents really hard on the ears? i think if i were to pick up the accent here like all the asian australians, it would make picking up girls a whole lot easier back in the US.

yesterday, my feet and my back didn't feel quite up to par. it felt actually pretty bad. so i didn't really get around to do much. walked around for a bit, took the monorail, but rested the majority of the day. at night, we met up with chuck, john-o, diam at this place called golden century. it is the best chinese seafood restaurant in sydney. the food was really good and fresh. along the walls of the restaurant are fishtanks with crabs, fish, lobster, etc. and whatever you order, they take it right out of the fish tanks and then put it on a scale. who knows if they just take the fish to the back and swap it with the ones in the freezers like they do it in the movies that make fun of these kinds of restaurants. i tought one amusing thing was that the small clams were called pippis/pippys (pronounce pee-pees). when we asked them why they were called pippys, they said, "i dunno, why is the crab called the crab?" i guess they really had no idea what we were referring to.

i found a gym here that had a very limited selection of exercise machines and some dumb bells. everything in metric...blah. i was able to get a workout in with what they had which is good because it is always hard to come back to a gym after a week off.

today, i met up with ruth and she showed me around sydney. we went to st mary's cathedral, got lunch at the rocks cafe, walked to the opera house, then to the botanic gardens, then walked along the harbor to wooloomooloo. got a beef pie at this place called harry's cafe de wheels. there isn't a person in sydney that hasn't heard about that place i bet. they are famous for their pies and hot dogs. the beef pie was pretty good, and supposedly the reason people like them so much is that it is the place to go when you're starving after a night out since it is open 24 hours.

sydney, much like new york, is a city that never sleeps. i'm not a big night life person, but i'm a night owl. its 12:45am here and I could probably step out and find a place that will squeeze me a large glass of fresh orange juice. i guess i never really visited places like orange julius when i'm in the US, but the fresh juice bars are abundant here and for some reason i find myself ordering a glass of OJ at every opportunity that i have here. i wish fresh juices were as common in SD as they are here. i would definitely be able to get my 8-10 servings of fresh fruit and vegetables daily unlike the norm when i get about 5 servings every other day when i remember to.

i'm not sure what's causing all this inflammation on my could be the stiff matress (i miss my tempurpedic...yes...i've taken it for granted), but i'm going to try to find a acupuncture place tomorrow. i found one, but i was told that the acupuncturist had left for china and won't be back till the end of the month. acupuncture i think is exactly what i need. i knew my luck was going to run out eventually. i'll have to look more tomorrow but all these places look kinda to severly grungy. somewhere i wouldn't want to go for anything involving needles of any sort.

after my 4 hour trip across sydney, i came back home and crashed. ray came back from work, and we got dinner at this sushi place at makoto. not sure if i've seen a place like this other than on TV, but it seems like a lot of the sushi places have the sushi trains. the sushi rotates around the bar as you eat, and you just pick out the items as they go by. you get charged based on the number and the color of the plates. the food was great and probably fresher than any sushi i've had in the US. cheap too. its almost unfair that we don't have anything like that in san diego. after dinner, we went to this pub that used to be a bank. the pub has 4 floors, all with slightly different themes. the first floor has a club/sports bar atmosphere. the second floor has a band stage and a few pool tables. the upper levels are much quieter.

so tomorrow, i'm going to try to get some acupuncture for my back. buy a pair of pants since the party we're going to is kinda up scale and jeans will look out of place according to the people who are throwing it. i need to try to make it to manly beach...i'll have time on friday, but i also want to rest up for the tour we're doing at blue mountain. we'll be checking out the jeanolan caves, which will be an all day event. hmmmm...decisions decisions. if acupuncture goes well i should be able to do both no problem as long as the blisters on my toes stop bothering me. after the cave tour, we're supposed to go watch some rugby at john-o's parents place. i do have the option to play poker instead, but eh whatevers. they probably won't be even playing for money since i'll be playing with the church group. it would be nice to say i've played poker in australia. but i think i'll probably have to pass. ;)

Monday, August 2, 2004

man this internet cafe is disgusting

all the computers are here are on their hind legs. riddled with spyware and probably many trojans. it really questions me about whether it is a good idea to check my email here or not. ray got his laptop on wireless but since he is away till the evening, and i'm usually dead tired from exploring sydney, i haven't got the opportunity to make use of his computer. i did upload the pics on jusspress.

so on saturday, we met up with ray's friend chuck. he took us to his christian church evening service. there we met so many asian people that spoke english with an australian accent. it was quite a trip. along with the hospitality you would find when you go to a church for the first time, i think there is something about the australian culture that made the experience more welcoming. for one, being an "american" is something to be admired here in australia from the people i talked to. just like anyone who hasn't had the opportunity to come and visit california, i think they all have the wrong impression when they think of places like Los Angeles, Hollywood, etc. what they think about is all the stuff they get to see on movie premiers and red carpet events. i think once they get the chance to come here, they'll appreciate what places like sydney has to offer. as i probably have said before, sydney is pretty much new york, and you won't find anything new or different. it is painstakingly clear that most of the influences in modern culture life here is adapted from american culture. so maybe they just want to meet sydney's big brother.

anyways, going to church was a great idea. we joined them at a surprise birthday dinner they were throwing for one of their youth members at this spanish restaurant. we made plans with them to tour the city a little bit and get dinner at their favorite restaurants. this is a far better way to see the best of what the city has to offer than any advice out of frommer's or lonely planet. on monday, ray went to work and my day began at the fish market. i got probably a close to a pound of salmon, and a dozen oysters. it was really cheap and unbelievably fresh. everyone kept telling me that their seafood was the best in the world, and after having some i would have to agree. it was an euphoric experience as i enjoyed them on the pier while fighting off the segulls. after my mindbending meal, i went to check out AMP (Centerpoint/Sydney) tower. went up to the top and took the tour. i got a tour package there to also see the aquarium and go on this 2 hour captain cook explorer tour. these three things are probably the first things that any tourist would do in syndey. should they be avoided? not sure. its something everyone should do once. so its like a general ed class everyone should take before they start exploring the finer parts of sydney. i did take the captain cook explorer tour, they met with ray for dinner at this korean place downstairs from our hotel. then we we got some dessert at this dessertflower place at darling harbor. some of the interesting flavors they had were wasabi and taro ice cream. i got the black seasame ice cream which was actually quite good. i'll have to look for it when i get back to the US.

today, i think my body needs a lot of rest. my toes have blisters, and my back doesn't feel too good. so i slept in today, and will probably take it easy. i'll probably just take the monorail to get another perspective of the city and stay off my feet as much as possible. we will be meeting up with some of ray's friends and their friends we met on sunday to get some chinese sea food that they highly recommended.

tomorrow, hopefully i'll be meeting up with someone i met at church who was gracious enough to offer to show me around sydney since she wasn't busy this week. things i'll have to do before the week is up is revisit The Rocks, take a thorough look at the malls and pick up some souveneirs, visit Manly and Bondi Beach, have a meat pie, revisit the Fish Market, watch a IMAX movie in 3D, see the Aquarium, and maybe see the Zoo and the wildlife park. Saturday will be the premier day....we're planning to go to the Blue Montains and check out the Jeanolan caves. that's just the things off the top of my head.

anyway, i must get out of here before i get some airborn disease from this third world internet cafe...

Saturday, July 31, 2004

g'day mates

after a 13.5 hour flight, we made a perfect touch down to sydney australia. . if it weren't for the long plane flight, I would think I was in San Francisco. pretty much no difference in how things look, feel and smell, other than people driving on the wrong side of the street.

i haven't had the opportunity to see beyond the walking distance outside of our hotel, but luckily we are right where the action is. so i've already been to darling harbor twice, and china town twice. we'll be meeting up with ray's friend here who has a car to see things further outside our walking distance. i'll also have more time to myself since ray will have to go work, and i'll just have time to kill durnig that time. i think i will take the public transportation system (which is supposed to be awesome) to do some sightseeing and pop off some nice pics i can post on jusspress.

the seafood is supposed to be exceptional here. i've only got the chance to sample some of it, but hopefully i'll be able to get some good seafood for dinner tonight. i've made a choice to try something new and different that i can't get anywhere else instead of ordering what I always order every time I go out to eat in SD.

sydney is 17 hours ahead of PST, so even though we took off on friday 1pm, we arrived here in sydney time, saturday 8:30 pm. what is interesting is that our flight back to san diego will be on sunday aruond 10:00am (sydney time), and we'll be arrivnig in sunday 7:30am (san diego time). so in a sense, we are traveling back in time.

ray did bring his laptop, but forgot his gsm sim card, so the earilest we'll be able to get our internet at the hotel room is in about a day from now. when he does i'll post up pictures on jusspress and put up enteries when i have the luxury of not being in a internet cafe.

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Australia here I come!

ray told me he was flying to australia tomorrow for business, and looking at my options, it sounded really appealing, especially for the price.  so all I needed to buy were the plane tickets.  and found an incredible deal that I couldn't pass up for $759 total round trip.  I've checked with my parents, my boss, got my tickets, and visa.  now I'm good to go!  I'll be leaving SD tonight to go to my parent's place.  My dad will be driving me to LAX tomorrow morning.

Leaving LAX tomorrow (July 30) at 1PM, and coming back on Aug 8 7:10AM back to LAX. 

I'll be staying at Avillion

My flight to Sydney is on Qantas Airlines Flight #8 at Terminal 4.

My arrival back to LAX is on Qantas Airlines Flight #107 at Terminal 4.

Unfortunately neither my cell phone nor blackberry will be in service down under.  if i do have access to the internet, i'll try to make daily posts here and jusspress.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004


so on friday night, i decided to pick up my car and head to casey's place.  eric right behind me with his modified eclipse turbo, i figured i'd show him what my unmodified honda accord can or can't do.  so getting on the 5 north, I'm at about maybe 85-90 mph.  i've taken it at about 80-85 before with some good tread on my tires with just a little bit of squeal.  this time, my front tires didn't have much tread left, and also having someone right behind me kinda made me nervous, and that lead me braking to the apex of the curve where it eventually lost traction.  i slid mostly sideways...probably turned almost 180 degrees.  while i was spinning, i noticed that it was spinning in a good direction and i was just hoping not to end upside down or some bad position where i would need a tow.  i also thought if i lost traction this correctly, i probably didn't have much grip to correct anyways.   it was a semi narrow onramp to where if i would have corrected, there was a good chance that my car would have shot forward right to the guard rail causing more than just scuffs on the bumper which was what i ended up with.  i was lucky that no one else was in the area to take that busy onramp for those few moments when i was skidding and when i had to turn my car around on the onramp (i hit my rear bumper flush on the guard rail in the process).

while arriving to casey's house, i noticed there was some hissing noise every time front left tire rotated 360 degrees.  upon a brief inspection, i thought it was just some dry leaves that got embedded between my tire and the rim.  upon close inspection, it appeared to be a few rocks embedded pretty nicely between the tires and the rim and that's what was causing the air to leak out of my tires.  the next morning, i got the tire remounted on my tire, but later that night, i noticed that the hissing noise was still there, just much more faint.  next morning, my tire pressure had dropped about 15 psi, so i finally decided its time to get new tires.  i got the yokohama es 100's this time to replace my front two tires that were bridgestone potenza  re730's.  the bridgestores were really awesome tires.  made my car about 10 times more fun to drive with some amazing grip and added nimbleness.  my initial impression of the es 100's were they felt noticably less nimble (which was to be expected), but it might have been because the tire place had underinflated my tires.  i'll have to adjust my tire pressure, take some corners agressively (but gradually) and see how it holds up.  hopefully its just a figment of my imagination.  as long as its more like the potenza and less like the michelin energy stock tires i'll be happy.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

what is it about the olympics?


is it about being a patriot to our country, supporting our athletes, whether we win or lose?  to join in announcing to the world, that our country does it the best and our nurturing democratic enviornment makes these accomplishments possible?

is it about identifying and relating ourselves to the athletes in our own drive for perfection and being the world's best?

or is it idolization of these athletes because they are closest thing to superman/woman that we got?


maybe its all of those things combined.  whenever i think about the olympics, i get a rush of adrenaline.  we'll be witnessing the creme of the crop, who defy what we've known to be possible.  athlethes who have sacrificed their whole lives to compete for this one event to accomplish their life's goal and to make our country proud.  this is a desire we all have inside of us.  at least for the people who watch the olympics, this is true.


watching the olympics this year will be quite a different experience because of people with tivos.  i'll never have to miss a minute of an event because i'm at work, a delayed start of an event, or hours of annoying commericials.

Saturday, July 10, 2004

how the pros play poker tournaments

i have been playing close attention to the professional poker players play on these freeroll tournaments. what you don't get to see watching them on TV is how they play from the beginning to the final table. their style of play is completely different from what you get to see on TV and how they play to make it to the final table.

the given is that the pros are good at are reading people and calculating odds. with that in mind their game is the weakest in the early stages of the competition. when you play against loose callers that call with A6, or people that call big raises with 36 off suit because they didn't want to give up their blind, you don't know what cards to expect from these players when you don't make a pair with your AK. its hard to fold AK when the board is 7 2 3, and someone is raises all in representing 2 pair when you've invested 35% of your chips before the flop.

a good percentage of people that get eliminated are people who place too much value in hands like AK when there are too many loose callers early on in the tournament.

the pros know that the majority of loose callers are are weeded out when the blinds are still low. so what the pros do is limp in with hands like AK, and fold to even small raises when they don't make anything on the flop. there's no need to risk elimination so early on in the tourney with Ace high because you're pot comitted when you know you can out play and out read players when the blinds are much higher and people are folding before the flop appropriately. if they choose to play hands like KK or QQ, they'll make very strong bet that even the loose players wont call and steal the blinds without confrontation. if anyone calls, they know what they are up against. they also limp in with hands like small pocket pairs and Ax suited hoping to make a set or a nut flush on the flop. even if you have 75% chance of winning, there's no need to play every one of those hands all in because you will lose one out of 4. you should only face the decision of elimination as least amount of times as possible.

so with style of tight play, you can pretty much fold your way up to the top 20 percent. hopefully you caught some cards and even though you are not one of the top 10 chip leaders, you should have enough to be able to start playing your A game (much different than the playing style early on) with your reading abilities when people are folding junk and your opponents cards are more readable. even if you don't play a single hand, the pros don't seem to worry at all. they are far better off than the people who got eliminated, and they know how to play with a short stack.

Wednesday, July 7, 2004

make 7 up yours

remember orlando jones had this great campaign "make 7 up yours"? not sure why it worked but it sure boosted sales of 7 up (kinda like jack for jack in the box). and then orlando jones wanted more money after his contract was up. 7 up execs figured, they might as well get another black guy because what's the difference? so one commerical later with the new guy, sales dip, and we never hear from them again.

Tuesday, June 29, 2004

had to remove the tag board. it was giving pop up ads. it wasn't being used anyway.

Wednesday, June 23, 2004

what's up with the weather?

We have rapidly approached summer with the sun nowhere in sight. it has been pretty darn cold to a point where it feels like we're approaching winter, not just fall. Another thing I have been noticing that we haven't had a lick of rain for the majority of the year. Are we in a drought? Laying here withering away in bed isn't all that bad when the weather leaves nothing to be desired.

Anyway, good news is that I'm about 90% better from my injury. I'm gonna take it easy for the next few weeks. I hope if I just take it easy the remaining injured part of me will slowly but surely heal. It sure was a scary 2 weeks indeed. I'm gonna go back to work tomorrow, to my new office (erik's old office/cave), and see how it goes. First thing I wanna do is get some pho to celebrate. :)

Saturday, June 19, 2004

post #446

Say what? yeah....I've written 446 entries. I haven't updated in a while... long story short, I'm having back problems again. its definitely not nearly as bad as before, but it's no ordinary muscle pull or a kink. i can honestly say that its got better since i injured it, and significantly better than when it was at its worst (for this injury). first question people ask is how i injured it. the only improper thing that might have caused it was trying to lift this heavy ass chair at work in the machine room. i dunno why it was heavy, maybe it was bolted to the floor or something. but i didn't really exert myself all that much. and if stuff like that is gonna injure me this severely, then I really gotta re-examine how I'm going to live my life from now on and make some major changes. its severe enough that i haven't been to work for the last week and a half. i think its almost better to where i can try going to work and sitting and see how it feels. but i'm not going to push myself, and probably not gonna lift weights at the gym for a while.

whenever something bad like this happens the first thing that pops in my mind is "man I hope this is just a bad night mare." and there is a long pause to see if i wake up. a lot of the times, it is a bad nightmare. unfortunately this one is not one that I'm going to wake up from. the second thought that pops up is "if I'm going to have to spend the rest of my life with this condition, do I want to continue on with life?" and it dawns on me that even if i had all the money in the world, there isn't much else that could be done. sucks, doesn't it? why can't they grow a new and improved spine (or maybe just a disc) in a test tube and give me a spine/disc implant? well, i guess i can just tell them to fuse 2 vertebraes together. i'll probably lose at least about a 1/2 an inch of height...and who knows what the drawbacks are when your vertabraes are fused...

i should really stop complaining. there are a lot worse things to be suffering from. i should be glad that i don't have a terminal condition or not have the use of all my arms and legs. so many people have it so much worse, and are more thrilled about what life has to offer for them than I do at the moment.

i went to the acupuncturist today. even though the drive was absolutely excruciating (for some reason, my car chair is unbearable to sit on for more than a few minutes). since the place where i just cut my hair was down the block, i went to get a haircut also. since i was long overdue for a haircut, i thought it would be something to lift my spirits, and it also was a preventative measure so that I don't end up with a mullet like last time.

its kinda ironic how i reinjured my back right after that one night two weeks ago i decided to cruise around san diego and reflect on how thankful i should be after going through all the places that reminded me of my initial injury a year ago. i took a detour on my way home and headed down to torrey pines beach, then went back up to downtown la jolla, to pb, to san diego zoo, to the coronado bridge, to coronado, to that strip of road south of coronado and back. i took that drive to reflect and let out frustrations. i thought i would have something good to say about that night. but i now that i reinjured my back, it really just doesn't make any sense. santa claus, please give me a new spine.

Tuesday, June 1, 2004

not just another long weekend

the plan was that i was going to spend the whole 3 day weekend with my parents and we were going to attempt our first real vacation since we came to the US. unfortunately, my dad's van broke and the escrow was closing on the house they just bought, so they didn't want to go anywhere far. hearing that, i didn't think it would be worth the drive on busiest driving day of the year to go to LA for some Korean food and just lounging around at home. i just told them i'll just go there next week. that cleared up my weekend plans, and i suddenly came to the realization that i had absolutely no plans for the weekend. so i called up jeff and asked him what he was up to and it turned out he was headed to vegas on saturday to check out the madonna concert and was looking for someone to tag along. he also said we could watch dvd's during the drive since he put a dvd player in. except the money issue, i didn't have to think much to realize that there wouldn't be much of a reason not to go. i've been wanting to go the longest time, and it seemed like the perfect opportunity. later on in the night, travis called me for some no limit texas hold em. not having played in 2 weeks, I jumped at the chance. We played a relatively short game...about an hour and half. I doubled my buy in, and so I was happy. The only hand that didn't go so well was when I was dealt pocket rockets, and I didn't raise enough for the guy with the 7 8 off to fold, and he hit the set when 7 K 7 came on the flop. i just called all his raises, and was pretty sure he had it, even though I was hoping all he had was AK, or something of that nature.

so i made the final decision saturday morning to go to vegas, and we were off. jeff put a really stiff suspension on his sti, so during some stretches of the freeway, it kinda felt like riding a wooden rollercoaster. maybe not as bad since we had cushioned seats. we made a stop by san gabriel. had some food there. all the restaurants over there are kinda weird. we went to this chinese restaurant, and they had everything you would expect, and everything you didn't expect. steak and eggs, spagetti and meat balls, etc. i got the rib eye steak and eggs and was surprisingly really good. cooked just right, and the eggs were over easy. the trip was getting off the right foot. after that, we headed out to vegas, and we definitely hit some slow areas along the way. i think with our detour to san gabriel the total drive to vegas was about 7 hours. we watched most of Bad Boys, and watched a lot of music videos. jeff's concert was at 8pm, and we got on the strip at 7pm. the traffic was unbelievably thick, so we just slowly cruised the strip watching some price music videos. we finally made it to the circus circus hotel and stopped by just to check in. they gave us a room detached to the hotel. overall, the circus circus hotel was pretty ghetto. the parking structure was old, the elevators looked beat up, our room was smokey, you could hear the people upstairs walking back and fourth across their rooms, and the air conditioner was piercingly loud. the tv had a keyboard running some form of windows. i wasn't surprised to see that the system was malfunctioning since it was giving me critical errors every time we tried to do something like fill out their survey. another thing that happened was that someone came by and reversed all the "do not disturb" signs on everyone's doors which probably confused all the housekeeping people as well as everyone staying there. ghetto.

after we checked in, we took the back way to MGM for the concert. i just tried to look for the poker room, only to find out that they are remodeling it. seeing that it was even hard to find $10 blackjack tables, i decided to kill time at the video poker machines. so i put my $20 in and played for a while, then someone next to me on the exact same machine started playing $.25 blackjack. the machines had about 9 different games on there. big mistake. the odds are definitely not the standard blackjack odds. i was plaing $1 a hand by the book, and it was a fast decline. every time I hit when I should, I bust, and only maybe 1 out of 20 times when the dealer shows a 6 or lower, he busts. I was going to stop at when I lost 60, and i got dealt a 11, and it wanted me to put money in so I could double down. so i put another 20, and that disappeared within a few minutes. i just couldn't believe how ridiculously rigged it was. it was not subtle. my fault for playing it. you get better odds at playing at a unacredited poker website hosted in russia where they advertise that they are going to scam money out of you. so i put in another $20 and played some more video poker. at least that game is semi fair. i got my $20 back, and jeff called me after he was done with the concert. we were both hungry, and cruised around the back end of the strip only to find out that it was just as packed. we found a no-name casino offering steak and lobster 24 hours a day for $7.77. the food was definitely worth the money (lobster was dry, steak and eggs would have been better), and we were quite satisfied. just don't get drinks there since they charge for it. after dinner, it was about 1pm, and started heading back to circus circus. we made a detour, and got back around 3pm.

the next day, we woke up, went to the bellagio buffet. entering the bellagio parking lot, there was a security check. they made us pop the trunk. i'm not sure what they were looking for but they didn't really open up any of our bags. so if you wanted to sneak stuff in, you might as well put it in your bag. the buffet was good as usual. while waiting in line, i went to check out their poker room. i was impressed with what they were offering. unfortunately, i didn't have enough time to sit down before or after lunch. at the buffet, they didn't have the tenderloin roast that they had the last 2 times i went there. the king crab legs were somehow perfectly split down the middle. the tiger shrimp was perfect, and the ceviche was the best ceviche i've ever had since it was just loaded with premium seafood. i must have had a whole pound of that. i wasn't blown alway by the food as I always am by the bellagio buffet this time. the food was good, but it could be that the sycuan casino here serves the prime rib now, and the bellagio buffet just doesn't overdo it for me. i still think its the best buffet ever. just not 10 notches above everything else anymore.

i would have played some poker after food if we had the time, but since we didn't, we just checked out the bellagio fountain show, and checked out the hotel for a bit. it was quite a difference coming from ghetto circus circus to the plush bellagio casino. not sure how they filter the cigarette smoke, but you just couldn't smell it even though everyone seemed to be smoking. unless, they smoked a fat cigar in front of you, like the ass in front of us at the buffet line. i could only gain the pleasure of imagining socking him in the gut while he took a big puff so he'd inhale all of it into his lungs. cause that's what everyone standing around him were doing. the bellagio fountain was spectacular as usual. they played "This Kiss" by Faith Hill. then we were back on the road. there wasn't much traffic at all. the only time we slowed down to 65 was when a truck carrying a lamborghini murano was pulled over to the side. it wasn't even in an accident, just resting, but causing traffic to slow down on both directions of the freeway. on the way to and from vegas, i think we hit 155mph for short distances twice in the sti. we raced a e36 m3, just to see how it would do. he kept up for much longer than we thought he would. it gets pretty scary after we hit 135+.

we got to san gabriel around 7pm. met ritchie and sandy. they tried to go to a subaru meet that didn't seem to be taking place. ate some chinese food and hung out till about 10pm. got home around midnight to put an end to a fantastic short trip to vegas.

on monday, i slept in, and met nguyen at his new house. we got some pho at pho hoacali express right in ranch bernardo. i don't know what they were trying to mean by "express" but it was the nicest pho place i've been to. they had 2 plasma screens, and looked a really nicely detailed restaurant. took my cockatiel to nguyen's house. took him outside to the park. surprisingly it was happy to be outside and not leave my shoulder. after that i came home to chill a bit, and went to the gym to burn off the extra few thousand calories i consumed during the long weekend.

Thursday, May 27, 2004

could it be the aspartame

i found this protein shake while looking to get off glutapro for a month. The Apple Ecstacy flavor is made by Syntrax called in the Nectar. I drink 1 to 2 scoops a day....which might be very minor. I was drinking 2 to 3 scoops for a month. just the other day i've been wondering why i've been feeling mildly depressed and so detached even from all my current, and the gym. i just don't feel like myself this week...and its been a steady decline in my willingness to participate in social activities within the last couple of weeks. true, it could just be the weather, but i found out yesterday that the protein shake has aspartame in it...and lots of it. and one of the most common effects of aspartame is that it messes with cognition and it makes you depressed. this stupid low carb craze gives these protein shake makers no choice when sweetening up their shakes. either make their shake taste bland, or put aspartame and sucralose in it. i would be much happier if these shakes just came with regular old sugar. is that too much to ask? it's much cheaper and healthier. who cares about the carbs. these shakes don't have fat so even if it was sweetened by sugar it would be no problem. plus the simple cards would be well used at the gym.

damn, i got a full bottle of Nectar that I like drinking, and now I can't drink it. My other shake is Glutapro and it has sucralose in it. There are a lot of studies coming out about the dangers of sucralose. I want sugar! just give me my simple carbohydrates damn it!

so fantasia won. no big surprise for me. diana did have a chance to nail her last song, but she started on the wrong foot, or her voice just went out after her first 2 songs and she blew it. when she hit a bunch of flat notes towards the end, I heard it coming after the first few notes when she started. I could only grimace in anticipation. She should have sang her best song (3rd song) first. But then again, fantasia nailed her 3 songs, especially her last one. its true the sympathy votes could have even helped her. by the things everyone seemed to be saying, diana was the underdog. camile's hair looked really awful. i guess that's what happens when you don't get the pros to make you over before the event.

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

the unpolitically correct american idol prediction

who will go tonight? well, let's break it down. fantasia has got the votes from everyone who's trying to salvage the diginity of the show. a mix of casual to dedicated voters. she'll also be on the rebound from being in the bottom 2 last week, and she's also got the majority of la toya's votes. diana nailed her last performance last night. the only people voting for her will be people who are voting to keep her in the top 2, especially after her last performance. jasmine still has got the sympathy votes, and the dedicated voters from hawaii. definitely not as much as last week, but still a lot. she's also got the votes from the asian nerds who can program auto dialers and program mass SMS text messaging with their wireless cards. go asian nerds! cause jasmine is the cutest one compared to the inflatable baby doll diana (seems to inflate a little bit more each week), and a girl who looks like or is chris tucker is not my cup of tea. i would say that fantasia is safe. diana i'm kinda worried about. and people will be screaming bloody murder if jasmine knocks out diana. after watching last night, simon's comments kinda irked me. it made me want to go "f you simon. i'll vote for whoever i want." and i did. even though she didn't deserve it. the east coast should know by now, but i won't peek.

Thursday, May 13, 2004

the yin and yang

i ran into a strange combination of flavors which i found really interesting. i had a cranberry bagle and some jalepeno cream cheese. now, you would never think they would go well together but to my surprise was a great combination. the bitterness of the cranberry was complemented by the sourness of the sour cream, and the spicyness of the jalepeno was complemented by the sweetness of the cranberries. very interesting indeed.

just like i had predicted on american idol (other than george leaving earlier than expected), it came down to fantasia and La Toya much much earlier than people expected. And La Toya got the boot just like I said she would. I saw it coming a mile away. Man, I hope that idiot, Elton John, doesn't make any stupid anti-racist remarks again. With La Toya gone, a lot of La Toya's fans will be voting for Fantasia, and she'll cruise to victory as long as she keeps performing. I was never a big fan of hers. Especially since she is Chris Tucker in disguise. But I think she deserves to win this competition. I think next one gone will be Jasmine Trias. She got so many unnecessary pity votes from Hawaii that there will be a backlash this week. What's ironic is if she blows everyone away next week, she'll probably get less votes.

so i played at another tournament at viejas on sunday. I was doing spectacular, cruising to my 40th place, then I get handed 78 off suit in the Big Blind. The small blind calls. The flop is 3 7 8. My flop is 2 pair. Since its just me and him, I figured I had him beat. I raise $1000, he quickly calls. a 6 falls. I go all in because I don't want someone sucking me out on the river. And he calls. he has just about $1500 more in chips than me. We are the 2 big stacks at the table. he turns over 9 10, a nut straight. The river does not give me the full house, and the tourney is over for me. what sucks is that I could have eliminated him a few hands before when I had my pocket 10's and he had pocket 6's. Of course he made his set on the flop, and mine came on the river...too late I had already folded. If I just made it through that hand, it would have been pretty easy to win in the money. Oh well, i'll get him next time.

Tuesday, May 4, 2004

my parakeet flew away about 2 weeks ago. i stopped clipping its wings so that it had the freedom to fly around. but it got really hot in my room, so i left the balcony screen door open to let more air in, and i took the bird out so it can fly around as usual, and it made a circle, and then flew right outside my balcony. i lost sight of it after that. at least it knows how to fly with more precision now than it was when i got him, and its wings are long enough for a good flight. i can't really say i'm sure he'll be alright but from the day i got him, that bird was not meant to be a pet. he never really was social with people. it just wanted to stay still in the cage, bringing the least amount of attention to himself so that people would leave him alone. i got a new bird this week. a cockatiel. this bird and my last parakeet are polar opposites. while my parakeet tried to bring the least amount of attentiontion to itself so people would leave it alone, this one wants constant attention. just having people around him brings him comfort. i bought a very large rectangular cage, perch platform for outside the cage, and a toy set. they recommended that only half of his diet are seeds. the other should be wet foods like pasta, and fresh vegetables. so i bought him some 3 corn pasta, corn flakes, unsalted sunflower seeds, broccoli and carrots, and unsalted mixed nuts. this time, i didn't choose the best looking bird out of the cage. i went to a place that specialized in hand raised birds, and tried to pick each one up, and see the mannerisms and personalities. i have to say it was a good pick.

poker...didn't do too well last week. just got awful cards for the whole tourney at stan's place. i went to a poker tournament at viejas the next morning. i was holding K 10. i raised 300. another guy raised it to 600, so i called. i put him on AJ, or QJ. the flop was 3 5 5. he raised 1000, and thinking he was trying to buy out the pot, i called hoping to get lucky on the turn. the turn was a 10. So now I'm holding top pair with a King kicker. he calls all in, and I have to call. he turns over AA. doh. that ended the tournament for me.

i've been reading some poker books. i'm a very slow reader, so I'm still trying to get through my first book Caro's book of Poker Tells. Then I'll probably read Poker Theory, Super System, Winning Low Limit Poker, and Hold Em Poker for Advanced Players.

i went to see my bro and my family last week for my brother's birthday. we met at starbucks in irvine, went to costco, then to the irvine spectrum. walked around for a bit, then met the parents and went to go eat at U & I sushi. i don't really like muscles, but how they prepared them, they were da bomb. i've had better rolls at sushi deli here, but the nigiri was good.

i was browsing through, and it looks like its more than just high school and college now. you can now put your elementary, jr high, even kindergarden in there. so i put my elementary school in there, and to my surprise i found the girl i had my first crush on in my elementary school list. she also went to my jr high for the first year, but tranfserred i think during the first year, or maybe before the 8th grade. and it was a shocker to find out that she went to UCSD the same years I was there from 1996 to 2001. what a small world. i wonder if i ever ran into her. i probably wouldn't have recognized her. but i always wondered where she ended up....

Friday, April 30, 2004

who will be our next American Idol?

believe what you want, but maybe until the top 3, it is a popularity contest. Here are my predictions for the next 5 weeks if I had to guess it blind.

I think the 2 weakest singers in the top 5 so far are Jasmine Trias and Diana DeGarmo. They are both talented with amazing voices, but their voices are not fine tuned just yet. The are only 17 and 16 yrs old. but I don't think they will be the next one to go. i'm going to have to pull the race/sex card and say that Jasmine has an advantage because she's the only asian in the competition. Diana is the only white girl in the competition. And George is the only male in the competition. That leaves out Fantasia and La Toya. Fantasia is a good representation of what people are expecting a winner of American Idol should be, and La Toya is the powerful pure voice that Whitney Houston was known for which we are currently lacking in the music industry. If I had to make a guess La Toya will be the next one to go which will just make it all that much more controversial. Then it will be easy. Either Diana or Jasmine will go, and Fantasia and George will square off. And my prediction will be that Fantasia will win.

Thursday, April 29, 2004

Iron Chef America take 2

So it looks like they've totally redone Iron Chef America for tournament of the masters. I was surprised that so many of the star chefs wolfgang Puck, Bobbly Flay, and Mario Batali were so willing to participate in the kitchen stadium. They made 2 episode of Iron Chef America before. And it was complete garbage. First, the chairman was William Shatner. Eccentric? But WAY over the top. At least we can imagine Kaga to be an eccentric billionaire, whether he is or not. But to deliberately put someone in there who is just pretending (and everyone knows it), was just hard to swallow. Also, what makes the show great is the commentators, but more importantly the people who dub the voices of the commentators. They just completely forgot the element and hired 2 guys who looks like they commentate on football. Another important element was left out, which were the Iron Chefs everyone came to love. They just brought out people no one has ever heard (the iron chefs) to battle more chefs no one has ever heard (the contestants). What was left was a complete joke. Everyone knew, and decided to not produce any episodes. It seems as they fixed many things wrong with the new Iron Chef America Battle of the Masters. They brought familiar faces of the Food Network, and even 2 of the original Iron Chefs (using the word original loosely since Morimoto replaced the Michiba who replaced Nakamura, and Sakai who replaced Ishinabe). Dunno where Chin is, but out of everyone, I think Iron Chef Chin has the best chance of winning against the US chefs. Not to say that my favorite chef Sakai and Morimoto are not talented. But American palates and cuisine is all about abudance, boldness, and bursting with flavor. And that is the ying to the yang of Japanese Cuisine. Japanese cuisine is more about simplicity, delicateness, and subtleness of flavors. In different aspects French cooking is also the direct polar opposite of American cooking as well. Chinese food on the other hand is bold and bursting with flavor. And Chinese cooking is a cuisine everyone can identify with. It is no surprise that Bobby Flay won against Sakai, even though Sakai had never lost a battle that had to do with fish. on top of that, the fact that Sakai went overboard and served trout ice cream, i realized right there that he really could lose. Which did happen. Sakai sure was surprised of the verdict. I was surprised that Batali won against Morimoto, but maybe we should be giving more credit to these chefs on the food network. They really know their stuff, and it isn't all about behind the camera TV magic. Even without the smooth female voice commentator along with Dr. Hattori and the little dude (can't remember his name), at least they brought in one of my favorite people from the Food Network, Alton Brown. I think I can get used to it.

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

that's the dumbest shit i've ever heard

so Elton John publicly states that he finds it "very racist" that the three black females who are the most talented keep getting the bottom 3. there are so many things wrong with that remark. first, i guess he never watched last season when ruben won against clay. second, the week before last week, jennifer hudson was in the top 3. third a man in his position shouldn't be making such offensive remarks without having the facts straight.

it is my theory that fans only vote when they think they need to. when their favorite does well, week after week, then the fans stop voting, thinking that they'll make it through without their help. when their favorite doesn't do well, they vote as much as they can so they can save the contestant. so this theory applies to what happened to jennifer hudson. i always thought she had a great voice, but i saw this coming weeks ago. and this theory applies to the top 3 last week (which included none of the divas).

i got some more hard drive space, just in time too. I have about 800 gigs now....and one day after, my beater hd goes out. luckily it was only 40 gigs, and holding just a few documents i should be able to retrieve. that hd has served me well. sometimes downloading about 15 torrents at once, while running kazaa. it was also on a raid for a year or two which did some damage because that raid card and maxtors didn't work too smoothly. now i have a dilemma. should i get another HD that would be a beater drive, or should i get the best gig for dollar (250 gig for $160) me a total of 1 terabyte+. i need to make my mind up today since my computer at home is pretty much useless...

I drempt that I was vacationing in Vietnam, and I was at a poker house, and I was playing Hold em against these 2 American tourists. But these 2 guys didn't know how to play, and the way they are used to playing is that everyone puts an ante, and then everyone is dealt 5 cards face up. and whoever has the best hand takes the pot. needless to say I was pretty frustrated when I woke up. so it wasn't like hold em at all. More like 7 card stud, except with 5 cards. and all face up. I won one hand with a pair of Aces with a King kicker.

Monday, April 12, 2004

down up down up left right left B A

so we arrived at ocean's around 9:30ish on thursday. it just wasn't our night. no one really got any good cards except one of five of us. everyone quickly went down $100. i enjoyed their kung pow chicken (recommended by all the rounders), and just sat around for a while as some of them hung on for dear life. then i got bored, and eventually sat down at a 1/2 table buying in at $35. i was down to somewhere near $8, and i made it back to $42. so i lost $93 that night. but i really couldn't help it. i played tight. i just wasn't getting any cards. for the entire night, i think i saw 2 suits in the hole maybe twice for the 2 hours i sat there. i don't even think they were suited. rest of the time, i was just playing cards on the bottom of the list....53 suited....46 suited, J5 suited, etc. so i don't think i played a bad game. i just had a terrible run of cards. still made me question whether i just got lucky last week, or if i'm a descent player. according to brunson, it may take months to years to know the real answer to that question before you can expect to go in and make money every time you play.

friday, i took the day off to take care of my car. i got new wipers, batter, a wash, oil change, and suspension tightened. while they were working on my car, me, ray, and stan went to look at drum sets at guitar center. after that, me and stan went to shop for poker chips. we finally found a place that sold good poker chips. unfortunately, they were overpriced. we found king's casino chips for $1.59 per chip (you can buy it for $1.25+ over the internet). so 500 of those would be eight hundred.....nevermind. way over our budget. they also sold KEM cards...but $50 for the pack of there's a 100% markup eh? no thanks.

we played a tournament at stan's house on saturday with 8 people. i got first place....and i think i played pretty well. when the blinds were really high, i did a good job defending them almost every time, and i made some killer reads. every time someone called all in, i made the correct call when i called them. i can't say i wasn't sucked out on some of those pots. so with a little bit of luck, saturday at least stopped me from losing interest in the game.

went to sushi deli 2. we played again on saturday, for fun. we would play then show what we folded, and discuss why we played, and what was going on in our heads. i realized that i wasn't betting when i should, and not reading the board as well as i should. i also put too much value on two pairs. a pretty weak hand against straight, flush, and even trips.

came home, did my taxes, and went to sleep around 4:30 am. the turbo tax software is amazing. I didn't even have to fill out my W2 (because UCSD stores it in their database and can look for it with my ssn), or even my name, ssn (stored in my acct from last year), address, or all that stuff. Here's how I did my taxes this year.

I logged into turbotax with my username and password from last year. I typed in how much in interest i paid in student loans. Then my CSN for state. My credit card # to pay for the program, and everything else, I clicked through. Within 15 minutes I was done.

I played on partypoker on sunday night for play money. Turned 100k into 6 million. I played again today, and turned 100k into another 6 million. Stan says I should pick on some people at my own skill level. But picking on people who don't know how to play is so fun. :) There are some good ones too who play patiently. I just target them differently.

Thursday, April 8, 2004

bye bye camile

well, we all saw it coming. oh well. she has a great voice for a specific type of genre. hopefully she'll do something with it. american idol is not the type of competition i expect her to win.

i'm finding it really hard to make it to the gym this week. its a combination of things. last week was strategic deconditiong week. so my metabolism has gone down. i kinda got used to just going home and crashing even though i only did it for a week. also, i'm eating food during lunch sometimes that is making me feel like i have to take a nap after lunch. i wish my mind set could be like it was before. before, i couldn't wait to get to the gym on a daily basis to be just one day closer to achieving my goals. maybe if i see some results i wouldn't be saying this. luckily i haven't given into going home and sleeping, and skipping a day at the gym. hopefully this is just temporary for this week, and by next week, it'll seem a lot easier. i'm also going to change up my strategic deconditioning weeks. maybe i'll still make it to the gym that week, but stretch and do just a little bit of mild cardio. this way, the week after won't seem like i'm committing myself to the gym for the first time.

thursday is finally here. i've been having poker widthdrawls ever since sunday. people played for fun on sunday, but i was up in LA so i couldn't make it. ever since, i've been itching to play some poker. every day at work, i dream about driving up to ocean's 11 after work and playing some texas hold em. but its not something i would be proud to do. and if i do lose, i'll really regret it. not that i regret losing money on poker. but i would regret if i ended up sneaking off to poker and losing. doing something i shouldn't be doing instead of patiently waiting. i would tell myself "i told you so" and i would hate that.

i'm still wondering if i am a good poker player, or just an average player who's been playing with luck on my side. because when i was at the 2/4 table, it seemed like people there all looked like they knew what they were doing. except there were only one or two people other than me with more chips than they started with.

here is what i'm hoping to accomplish. i have been studying the list of playble hands, and i got it down:

raise and reraise in any position:


call early, raise middle and late position:


call middle and late position

A8s-A2s,K9s-K7s,Q9s-Q8s,J9s-J8s,T9s-T8s,98s,87s, 77,66,55,44,33,22,AJ,AT,KJ,KT,QJ,QT,JT

call late position early

K6s-K2s,Q7s-Q2s,J7s-J5s,T7s-T6s,A9,K9,Q9,J9,T9, 97s,96s,86s,85s,76s,75s,65s,64s,54s,53s,43s

i'll play my starting hands by the book (playing tight). if i do well, i might loosen up just a tad. but i realize that there could be some nights where i can get a good hand every turn, and get beat every single hand. that's just part of poker. on those nights, i'm very likely to go on tilt. stan was able to escape by only losing $2 when it was his bad night, so hopefully, by following his example, i can learn to do that. i also should realize that winning $159 like last time on a 2/4 table is no small feat. it would be foolish to aim so high and start playing loose when i get blinded by how much money i might be able to win. so i'll try to mentally prepare myself to just go there and play my game. i'm not really gonna think about how much money i can lose or win. win or lose, i'll still be happy to know that i played all my hands correctly. .

maybe i'll move up to the 3/6 table if people are playing tight like last time on the 2/4 table. it seems like people are too eager to jump into the bigger tables without getting good on the scrub tables (1/2 and 2/4). i think me and stan are definitely ready for 3/6. i can't say the same for a lot of the people actually sitting on the 3/6 table.

Thursday, April 1, 2004

chris tucker, you are fantasic on american idol.

01/08/04 - casey's house - game 1 - down $10, ray wins

01/08/04 - casey's house - game 2 - down $5, steve wins

01/16/04 - casey's house - down $10 - ray wins

01/16/04 - casey's house - down $5 - peter wins

01/18/04 - big bear lodge - up $10, stan wins

01/23/04 - stan's place - down $10, stan wins

01/30/04 - stan's place - game 1 - down $10 - 12 people poker

01/30/04 - stan's place - game 2 - up $20

02/06/04 - stan's place - down $10, dave plays, game ends 3am

02/13/04 - martin's friend's place in dt lj - up $20, stan wins

02/15/04 - travis' condo - down $40 (cash NL poker)

02/16/04 - stan's place - game 1 - up $10 martin wins

02/16/04 - stan's place - game 2 - up $30

02/27/04 - stan's place - up $30

03/04/04 - travis' condo - down $50 (Limit poker)

03/06/04 - stan's place - down $10

03/13/04 - no poker

03/19/04 - stan's place game 1 - down $10, matt wins (bounties)

03/19/04 - stan's place game 2 - down $10, steve wins

03/25/04 - ocean's 11 - up $50

03/27/04 - Ray's house - up $30 (counting 5 i put in for ray)

03/30/04 - ocean's 11 - up $159

Wednesday, March 31, 2004

all poker'd out

we got to ocean's 11, and sat down around 7:30pm after having some food at the bar. i was looking forward to playing a tight game, but the first 3 hands i was dealt were monsters. first hand, 2 pairs. jacks and queens. second hand, straight. third hand, straight. so within 5 minutes i'm up 80 dollars. for the next 4 hours, i fluctuate from being up 60 to being up 100. me and stan notice an ususual pattern of kings showing up. there seems to be 2 kings always showing up on the flop, or on the turn. unfortunately, everyone plays with kings, and the luck seemed to be distributed evenly.

i played one had wrong where i had pocket queens, 2 kings came up on the flop, no one raised, so i just called everyone's raises after the turn. and they were reraising representing they had kings. i'm not sure when would have been a good fold, but the pot was incredibly large, and both people rerasing had the kings. i still lost a lot of money on that hand. probably close to $30. i'll need to think about this one.

there was this hand where i had A7, and another guy had A6. i sensed his hesitation to raise when he made his pair of aces on the flop. he ended up checking. so i raised, every change i got, and he called every raise with quite a bit of hesitation. and lucky for me, the 7 kicker played. i thought that was a really good read on my part.

another memorable events of the night was that i saw this bald chubby hispanic guy. playing super agressive. literally buying out every pot. like he was board, and really didn't care about his money. i picked up on that. he had JQ suited. i had QK suited. the board came up 56564. he bet every turn, and i quickly called as soon as he got chips in there. when it was done, i had taken all of his money except $1. he gave that to the dealer and left the table. i felt like i had taught that guy a lesson, and did good for the entire table by kicking a guy like that out.

there was this indian guy...looked like he was 18. there was this one hand where i had top pair, and he flipped over pocket 5's to make trips. you can never read what cards someone has when they have pockets. he took a lot of money from me that hand. me being the chip leader at the table, i sensed his david vs goliath complex the way he was firing at the pot whenever i raised. knowing this, i knew he wouldn't be playing as tight, so i was overjoyed when he kept reraising my raises when i was holding big slick (AK). the flop comes out, and i flop an inside straight draw. the miracle card comes out on the river, and i make the nut straight. and the indian guy is still betting at the pot. so i raise him. i flip over my monster, and bitch slap his overagressive immature ass back in his seat. i make my money back, and then some.

so the big blind position is circling towards me. i tell the dealer i need a rack for my chips. so as i'm racking another full rack of chips, i have some left (4 or 5) that i can carry in my hand. so i wait to fold my next hand. well what do you know? pocket aces once again. then there was this drunk guy at the table who was rerasing my raises. i'm like, man this is great. he's doing all the work for me. and some crappy flops come out, and i know he hasn't made anything. so i keep betting, and he's reraising me. so i don't even look at the turn or the rivers as they come out, and i'm just throwing money into it every chance i get. he finally decides to call, and i turn over my pocket aces, and it turns out he had top pair on the flop and nothing else. i don't know what he was rerasing me with, but it was an easy victory. so i'm kinda off my chair, and i'm like...."ummm...i need a...." someone hands me anoter rack. i tip the dealer, and make my exit.

one odd thing is that i never had a single hand of trips. a totally different thing than what i had experienced last time i was at ocean's. this time i had a few flushes, few striaghts, and a lot of high pairs and 2 paris that got me the win. i came out with more than 3x of winnings i had when i went last thursday. one thing i didn't like doing was reraising on the flop whenever stan was in an hand since he rarely seemed to be playing his hands. but everytime he finally decided to call, i was holding AK, KQ suited, AJ, etc. seriously, i never raised preflop with anything less than AJ unsuited, and he seemed to be in the majority of those hands.

in all honesty, i felt really drained afterwards. i got lucky with some great hands last time. this time, i went up against really agressive players and i had moderately good hands so it wasn't so easy. i was up a lot by hour and a half, and i already got my fill at that time. even though i had walked out with more money after 4 hours, it felt like i had to grind it out. and i don't think i could ever have the patience be a rounder for a living.