30 March 2008

I Was At Nationals Stadium Today!

Well, okay, I was there only in spirit, but still...! (Not to be confused with Chelsea who I heard was there for real to see the action - I'm really quite jealous....) But I did watch the USA home opener for Major League Baseball between the Washington Nationals and the Atlanta Braves in Washington, DC this afternoon. It was a heck of a game, with Zimmerman's 9th inning 2-out walk-off home run over the right center field wall as the perfect ending to the Nats first game in their new home. I can't wait to go see a game there someday, with the spectacular views of the DC landmarks from various places all over the stadium. I hope Chelsea gets back to posting soon, because I wanna hear how it was watching President Bush throw out the first pitch (even among the boos there, Chels, I still heard your cheering!) and the amazing job done by both starting pitchers - minus the 1 error, 26 in a row sat down by Tim Hudson and the Braves' bullpen between the final out of the 1st inning and the walk-off homer by Zimmerman.

29 March 2008


I've recently been inducted into the circle of Flagstaff people who "folf" - also known as disc or frisbee golf. I've now played three times, getting better every time, with scores descending from 130 to 81 to today's score of 75. The one thing I have to wonder is: why didn't I ever learn about this sport during the prior three years of my college time here? I don't know, but I now have something new to pursue betterment in! My only problem: like regular golfing with clubs and little dimpled balls... my back and shoulders are gonna be sore in the morning!

Collection Agency

Well, I decided something this morning (it's 4am here). I like to collect stuff, and in the past I've been known to keep a collection of baseball cards, coins, rocks, puzzles, games, old or rare books, and so on. But, I've decided to go a different route for a while and see how much of this I can collect: the best Disney movies of all time. I used to watch Disney movies ever since I can remember. My mom even says I used to be quieter as a baby when she would put in the movie Pinocchio. So, because I was bored with nothing else to do, I researched all the Disney (or its affiliates) movies ever made, and compiled a list of the top 70 films I want for my movie collection. In no particular order: 1. Snow White and the Seven Dwarves 2. Dumbo 3. Pinocchio 4. Alice in Wonderland 5. Peter Pan 6. 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea 7. Lady and the Tramp 8. Old Yeller 9. Sleeping Beauty 10. 101 Dalmations 11. The Sword in the Stone 12. Mary Poppins 13. The Jungle Book 14. The Aristocats 15. Robin Hood 16. The Fox and the Hound 17. Beauty and the Beast 18. Aladdin 19. The Return of Jafar 20. The Lion King 21. The Lion King II: Simba's Pride 22. A Kid in King Arthur's Court 23. Pocahontas 24. Toy Story 25. Toy Story 2 26. I'll Be Home For Christmas 27. The Parent Trap 28. A Bug's Life 29. Mulan 30. Air Bud 31. Tarzan 32. My Favorite Martian 33. Remember the Titans 34. The Little Mermaid 35. A Goofy Movie 36. The Emperor's New Groove 37. Monsters, Inc. 38. Holes 39. Freaky Friday 40. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl 41. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest 42. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End 43. Over the Hedge 44. Finding Nemo 45. The Incredibles 46. National Treasure 47. National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets 48. Miracle 49. Sky High 50. Cars 51. The Santa Clause 52. The Santa Clause 2 53. Underdog 54. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe 55. Robots 56. Madagascar 57. Flubber 58. Honey, I Shrunk the Kids 59. Honey, I Blew Up the Kid 60. Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves 61. Homeward Bound 62. Homeward Bound 2 63. Hocus Pocus 64. Angels in the Outfield 65. Man of the House 66. James and the Giant Peach 67. The Rookie 68. Galaxy Quest 69. Jungle 2 Jungle 70. Mrs. Doubtfire Now, granted ALL of these may not be Disney films, but they are close enough to be counted among the best of the best. At present, I own only one of these (National Treasure), but my parents own somewhere around 1/3 of them. I want to make certain I have a good, healthy movie collection for my children someday (plus, I enjoy watching the older ones again - brings back memories). I'm sure I will add to this list as Disney/Pixar continues to produce great movies, like the upcoming "Wall-E." If anyone sees one I've missed on my list, let me know!

26 March 2008


So, the next time you are considering staying up until 6am to watch a baseball game live televised in the Tokyo Dome at 3:05am in Arizona, maybe think again. Or maybe that's just solid advice for myself. I'm tired, though, admittedly, the game was pretty darn good. Couple of homers, couple of really good defensive plays, great pitching from Rich Harden....

Unfortunately, now I have to go to class and try to think about.... ugh.... organizational psychology. A topic which, if it wasn't actually a requirement, I would just blow off entirely. I'm done with school right now. Done entirely. I want to get out into the workforce and start making something of all this "learning" that I've supposedly been doing over the past 22 years. Though, frankly, I don't see how learning about some of the stuff I've been learning is ever going to help me. Like calculus. Serious, who fucking uses calculus outside of nuclear physicists and boring, stodgy old guys wasting away as math professors at podunk universities?

So basically, to link this to the title of this post.... little sleep makes Andrew a wee bit snappish toward things. I was asked today by my supervisor in our weekly meeting what my goals were for the staff here for the remainder of the year, like having a good fundraiser next week, maintaining strong relationships with my fellow staff members, etc. And you know, the only thing I could think of was: "I think those are just fairly obvious things, not really goals. I mean, of course I want our staff to remain strong over the rest of the year. I'm not going to say I don't want our fundraiser to go well, you know?" In hindsight, I hate doing that, but really, that's what happens when I stay up too late. I'm going to bed early tonight so I can get some shit done tomorrow. Papers and stuff.

Oh, and apparently I have a library book that was due in October still in my possession. I think the library is screwing me over. All I can say is that this better not fuck with my graduation or I am gonna be ticked.

22 March 2008

Phoenician Adventure

Yesterday was my big Spring Break vacation, since I had to be on call all during the first part of break. Me and three friends decided to go down to Phoenix (Mesa) and watch the Cubs take on the Rockies at Hohokam Stadium. We left around 11am and got to Scottsdale around 1:30, where we stopped at Chipotle's and got some food - which, if you've never had it before, was really good and I highly recommend it.

Then - more driving, and we got to Hohokam Stadium.... wait for it.... just in time for the top of the eighth inning. Apparently, SOMEONE (*cough RYAN cough*) forgot that all MLB game times are in Eastern Standard Time, and that 4:05 pm Eastern is 1:05 pm Mountain! So, much deliberation later, we decided that our only logical course of action was to drive all the way across the Phoenix desert to Peoria, Arizona to the Peoria Sports Complex to watch the Seattle Mariners take on the San Diego Padres.

En route, I got to play tour guide for my friends, as two of them are from Chicago and one from Wisconsin, so they'd never seen Phoenix before. I was pointing out Arizona's sacred landmarks: Bank One Ballpark (yes, I know they now call it "Chase Field", but it will ALWAYS be BOB to me), America West Arena, the banking district skyscrapers, the weird curvy-shaped building which I think is a roller rink, etc.

Well, we arrived for the game about two hours before start time, which was 7:05pm (Mountain, we checked!), bought our tickets for the bleachers just off first base, and decided the only logical course of action was to go pre-game a little bit over at McDuffy's Sports Grill, where they had about 500,000 televisions all showing the Duke-Belmont and Texas A&M-BYU NCAA games. (Okay, not 500,000, but maybe more like 40.) So we rooted for them for a while, with everyone but me rallying for a Belmont upset over Duke and all of us pulling for A&M. Well, both my teams won, and as the clock on that game ran out, we had about 30 minutes to game time for baseball, so we headed back to the stadium.

Now, if you've never been to the PSC (Peoria Sports Complex), it's a collection of multiple baseball, football, and other fields for spring training and I would imagine for Little League and stuff, with one big stadium seating roughly 10,000 smack in the center. We were there. Section 218, row JJ, kind of between first base and the outfielders, about 20 or so rows up from field level. The grass was green, the stadium lights were on as the sun sank below the red Phoenix sky, and the vendors were in full force.

Without giving you the complete play-by-play (which I could, because I like to score the games I watch, so I have a record of the play-by-play), there were a few key highlights:

Mariners batting: Ichiro Suzuki was everything the sportscasters describe him as - a major newsmaker, who went 3-for-4 with two doubles, three runs, and a stolen base. Raul Ibanez went 3-for-3 with a run scored, and Jose Vidro went 1-for-4 with 2 sacrifice flies and 2 RBIs.

Padres batting: Adrian Gonzalez went 2-for-5 with two doubles and a run scored, while the catcher Bard went 2-for-3 with an RBI, but he was also thrown out when he overran first base, which was mainly stupidity on his part. One of the best parts of the game came in the bottom of the ninth, Mariners 6, Padres 4, Mitch Headley up to bat. Right before he came to the plate, I remarked offhand that I could feel it and that he was going to hit a 2-run home run right then. AND HE DID! I called that bad boy, which tied the game and sent it into extra innings!

Mariners pitching: Miguel Batista went 6.0 innings, allowed 3 runs on seven
hits, and struck out 7.

Beyond that, the game was awesome, ending in a 6-6 tie (apparently known as 'kissing your sister'), and we left at just past 10pm in the beautiful 75-degree night air. After the game, it was too early to just go back to Flagstaff right away, so we decided to hit up the Big Bang, a dueling piano bar on Mill Avenue on the ASU campus. We were there for about 2 hours listening to them jam out to everything from piano-played rap (an interesting combination to say the least) to 80's rock-and-roll to hip-hop tunes and everything in between. After that, we were all pretty exhausted, so we drove back to Flag, and crashed into bed around 4am.

That was pretty much my Spring Break adventure, the rest of the time being spent sleeping, watching the rest of Season 4 of "24" and being on call in my building for 72-hours. Now it's back to the grindstone, and an exam on Monday (today) for which I am cursing the name of my professor, a paper tomorrow, and another paper Wednesday. Thank God I only have about 7 weeks left until I'm done with school, because Senioritis has hit me BAD!

19 March 2008

The Job Hunt

Well, it's that time of life now. I'll be graduating college in May of this year, and I need a job when I get out into the "real world." I have been sending my resume out to a wide variety of places, and have received three callbacks so far.

One from a job placement service in Washington, DC, which places college graduates and others who want political-based jobs into positions in DC and other places along the East coast. Another from the campaign for Representative Duncan D. Hunter (R-CA) for a three-to-four month job as a campaign staffer until after the primary in June, which I couldn't really follow up on because I won't be graduating until May, so the whole one-month thing didn't work so well. And the third I had a job "interview" - more like a meet-and-greet, really - with Coleman, Dahm & Associates in Phoenix on Friday. I was meeting with Matt, who is the brother of Greg, Congressman Rick Renzi's campaign manager in 2006, and who has been helping put me in touch with a couple places which might be interested in me.

Overall, I liked Coleman Dahm for its relaxed atmosphere and for the variety of things they're doing right now. A big portion of the office was dedicated to McCain stuff - buttons, direct mail, etc - when I was there, but they've also been working with legislative stuff, corporate clients, and the campaign of Jim Ogsbury for CD-5. That's Matt's big project. While there, I got to talk with Matt and Bert for a bit about myself and about their offices, and I really liked what I saw. It would be a great place for me to learn more about different communications-based stuff that I didn't learn already through the College Republicans, like direct mail, and somewhere I can develop the stuff I have already had practice with to make myself better.

It's also close-to-home so I could have someplace to get on my feet before going outside Arizona like I would like to do. I'm going to keep in touch over there while I keep my other options open and keep scheduling interviews, and who knows, come May I might be working in Phoenix again.

Also on Friday, I saw that Coleman Dahm is in the same office complex as my friend Michelle's place of work, Gordon C. James Public Relations, so I decided to walk over there and say hello. Fortunately she was in, and it sounds like she's been doing very well. It was nice to see her again, if only briefly (she was busy).

Otherwise, today's been all about being on call. As an RA, I'm required to work part of my Spring Break being available in the building for at least two days. I elected to swap a day with someone else so she could leave for her vacation and so I could have one less on-call shift later in the semester. So I've been in the building from 7pm Sunday night and I'll get off at 7pm tonight. 72 full hours. With no one else here because they're all gone for break. But nonetheless, the free time let me catch up on some work, watch a bunch of episodes of "24", and do a puzzle (I love puzzles - they're relaxing).

I also bought a laptop computer off my friend so I could have something to do work on outside the building. It should greatly come in handy once I reload the ethernet hardware onto it, and put Microsoft Office back onto it. My friend wiped the hard drive clean (of all his old files), and it took some of the programs with it. I think I have some of the install discs at home, but we'll see. The computer is a Gateway Solo 5300, so not a bad piece of equipment, with Windows XP installed. It came with all the cords, and ethernet port card, a wireless card, a USB external port, a DVD-ROM drive and interchangeable floppy drive, and a nice laptop bag. I paid $80 for it, so not a bad deal for an older laptop I can use for word processing and basic internet - not to mention DVDs from time-to-time. The only downside is that I need to reinstall the ethernet and wireless drivers, and the battery doesn't carry a charge very well. But not bad, really.

For tomorrow, the plan is to drive to Mesa to see a Spring Training game between the Rockies and Cubs with some friends, and then chill out for the remainder of Spring Break. Good times, indeed!

17 March 2008

The Green Fountain

This picture is of the Fountain dyed green for St. Patrick's Day celebrations, from today, I think. It was taken by Ben Bitter (for copyright's sake)!

St. Patrick's Day!

Happy St. Patrick's Day to all my friends out in the blogosphere! Today is that time of year when we celebrate Saint Patrick with a feast day that includes lots of green in just about everything. Green food, green clothing, green-themed events, and so forth. It's the national holiday of Ireland, and celebrated in several countries around the globe. Here's a couple interesting tidbits about the day that you may not have known:

1. The color for St. Patrick used to be blue, not green. However, throughout the years, the color green came to prominence as the color of the country, the color of the symbol of St. Patrick (the three-leafed shamrock plant), and as a sign of nationalism to Ireland.

2. The shamrock was used by St. Patrick to explain the Holy Trinity to pre-Christian Irish. The shamrock's three leaves symbolized the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

3. Some cities in the United States have created rather unique little ways to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. Among these are: painting the center stripes of roads green just for the day, Chicago dying their river green (since 1961), the streets of Rolla, Missouri are painted solid green the night before St. Patrick's Day for their festivities, the Sons of Erin (think "Erin Go Brea") have held a classic car show, parade, and three-day festival in Henderson, NV, and in New York City, they boast, of course, the largest St. Pattie's Day parade in the world!

In my hometown of Fountain Hills, Arizona, home of what was the world's largest fountain until 1981, the town's officials dye the 560-foot plume of water coming out of the fountain green at noon on St. Patrick's Day. When it's windy, the water is carried by the wind a short ways over the lake and creates an awesome waterfall effect which is totally green! This is usually accompanied by a parade and other festivities. Some people have big picnics in the park there, and watch the dying of the fountain at noon. The photograph above is of the Fountain at night.

At least 14 of the 30 Major League Baseball teams now also celebrate the day by wearing green caps, jerseys, and other gear on St. Patrick's Day, started by the Cincinnati Reds in 1978. Now the Red Sox, Cubs, Dodgers, Mets, Braves, Phillies, Tigers, Pirates, Padres, Royals, Mariners, White Sox, and Cardinals all also wear the luck 'o the Irish on this day. (However, there's not a lot of stock in that whole luck thing today, because 7 of those teams lost or are losing games right now, and 7 teams are winning or have won their games today right now.)

So today, go have yourself a big plate of corned beef and cabbage, with some Guinnes, Harp, Murphy's, Beamish, or Smithwicks, or just some good old Irish whiskey (the alcohol being a reference to the Roman festival of Bacchanalia, the God of wine, whose festival was also - you guessed it - March 17)! Make sure you wear some green, lest you get yourself pinched (another uniquely American ritual, with no roots in Irish culture at all), and make sure you remember your history - George Washington's holiday for the Continental soldiers on 17 March 1780 known as the St. Patrick's Day Encampment of 1780 or the first public celebration of the day in Boston by Irish settlers in 1737.

But most of all, enjoy the day, and if you see any leprechauns - who were traditionally described as wearing red from head to toe, not green, and who make the shoes of faeries - like those which notoriously change the city of New London, Wisconsin to New Dublin for a week, make sure you get his pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, but watch out for his tricks, as they are notorious for being tricksters!

Erin go brea!

10 March 2008

Spring Break and Musings

Yes, it's Monday, so that's not as much fun as it could be, but on Friday, I FINISHED my capstone course for college! This means just four more classes 'til graduation! Pretty sure I got a B in the capstone, too, so that's good. What else is new? Well, next week is Spring Break, and I'll be going home on Thursday through Sunday for my dad's 50th birthday. On Friday, too, I will be meeting with a guy about a possible job in Tempe on the CD-5 campaign staff. I really hope I can set something up by the end of break - it would be AMAZING to have a job taken care of by the end of March! Then Sunday through Wednesday at 7pm, I'll be on call up here in Flagstaff (yes, over St. Patrick's Day, so no booze!), so that could be worse. I'll have the last weekend for myself, to see if anyone wants to do anything. Now, I am listening to Disney music and putting off writing my draft paper for my class. No big deal. It's a three-page rough draft. Oh, and the weather here is gorgeous; I was out in it yesterday playing disc golf. I might just go out right now and run some errands!

05 March 2008

Lucky the Penguin

It's official! Baseball season has started, and I cannot wait for the regular season's grand opening on March 31st. D-Backs home opener is just a few short days later on April 7th. I think that when I go home for Spring Break, I'm going to copy my yearly scoresheets (all 324) so I can keep up with scoring the games.
In other news, I'm not doing a paper on the US history of involvement in promoting democracy in Kosovo and their current struggle for independence. I should be, but I'm not right now. I'm writing a blog post. But seriously, this 8-page, double-spaced, 12-point-font paper on Kosovo is my FINAL TERM PAPER for my capstone course. And if I can swing something like at least a 50% and a 33% on my last two discussions, then I only need a 70% on the final paper to maintain a B in the class. And if, out of those, I don't miss more than 19 points (of 280). I will earn an A. So, I'm fairly confident in my B. After Friday, I only have to worry about 4 classes (Psychology of Sexuality, Organizational Psychology, Art Appreciation, and The Nuclear Age - Junior Writing class), instead of 5.

Also, as a side note today, I found a class ring belonging to someone out on the ground that just happened to catch my eye as I walked past. So I am searching for the person it belongs to, because it's a nice high school class ring - 24 karat gold and all.

In case you're also wondering, the picture I've attached with this post is Lucky the Penguin. Our "teambuilding" project from today's Org. Psych class. We had to make an animal using medical tape, a cold pack, a band-aid, tweezers, and a tongue depressor. Lucky is what we came up with, and I figured I'd share our creation with the world on the net here.