All The Fails

Apparently my mind and luck are already on vacation.

Delivery Fail
One of the things about which I wanted to write yesterday was the failure I suffered with a book I delivered. Sometime back I mentioned how Amazon deliverers were leaving things on my front stoop instead of by the kitchen door. Well, it happened again. This time the book, which was shipped in a cardboard envelope was sitting on the stoop when I arrived home.

Because the company didn’t provide Amazon with shipping information I never received notification of the package’s delivery. For all I know the package had been on the stoop all day Tuesday, since I didn’t think to check when getting home that day.

Well, if you live in Georgia you know the amount of rain we’ve been getting recently, far more than a cardboard envelope could possible fend off. The paperback workbook was soaked. Fortunately for me I was able to place it in front of a box fan all night Wednesday, and when I woke on Thursday it was much drier and hadn’t warped too much. I complained to the company but expect no restitution.

Whale Fail
I have been given a ticket to the Georgia Aquarium that needs to be redeemed by the end of June. I left “XYZ Corp” early so that I could go to the aquarium and wander for a few hours alone, taking pictures of the animals.

After fighting traffic, and winning, I encountered failure when I saw that the aquarium was closing at 5pm. Turns out yesterday was one of the two days in June that the aquarium closes at 5, instead of the regularly-scheduled 9pm. The only positive was that because essentially entered and immediately exited the parking lot, which now costs $12, I didn’t have to pay anything.

ITP Flickr Pic
Fail. I was hoping to provide some cool shots from the aquarium today.

Wallet Fail
With new-found time on my hands I decided to drive home, and then walk up to Midway Pub and spend the $12 parking fee saved on some beer. I was smart enough to pack a large umbrella, but not smart enough to ensure that I was carrying my wallet. I discovered this just before the waitress delivered my first beer.

“Will you please hold that for me? I forgot my wallet and have to walk home. I live only three blocks away.” I said apologetically. I hoofed it home and thankfully found my wallet in the M6, and then back to Midway. Of course it started to rain on my return trip, but with my big-ass umbrella I didn’t care all that much.

Field Day Fail?
“XYZ Corp” is having its annual (?) field day today at Piedmont Park. Why do all of the companies for which I’ve worked choose late June for these events?

Fortunately it appears as if the rain is going to hold off for one day, but I can only imagine that the conditions of the park are going to be muddy, muddy, muddy.

A Moment Of Success
I am using the mobile blogging rig again today and finding it to be an incredibly capable rig. Though the keyboard is cramped I am able to type (English) much more easily than with the onscreen keyboard.

Hope you have a fantastic weekend. I have no clue as to what I am going to do, other than prepare for vacation of course.

Paulie [eatl/ga]

Posted in My Daily Life | 4 Comments

Things To Blog About, I Left Myself No Time To Blog


A lot of poor time management on my behalf leaves me with no time to write this morning. I guarantee a smashingly good blog post tomorrow. Well, I can only guarantee a longer on.

If you are in the American Southeast I hope this rain is not impacting you too greatly.

Paulie [eatl/ga]

Posted in My Daily Life | 11 Comments

Double Booked?

Oh for fuck’s sake! Even with modern day calendering in my pocket at all times I have managed to double book myself tonight. I have signed up for a two-week German grammar class, of which I will miss the second week because I failed to consult my calendar and see that I will be on my way to Germany next Wednesday, and last week I RSVPed for the Alliance Theatre’s “Salon and Happy Hour” tonight. Given the close proximity of the two events, if they didn’t completely overlap I would be able to pull off the double play; but they do, so I can’t. Dangen!

I called the Alliance Theatre and unRSVPed for their event.

A Plan For Germany Is Starting To Form
Yesterday I booked two nights in a private room (with shared bathrooms) in hostel in Heidelberg. Why Heidelberg? Well, because I hear that it’s nice and it is on my path from Düsseldorf to Vienna. Now I need to figure out what I want to do while I am in Heidelberg.

I will have two more days available before I need to be in Vienna. I know that I will be traveling by train to another city before heading to Vienna, but am not sure to which city I will be traveling. München (Munich) is a possibility, but I may want to save that for a longer-term visit in the future. Besides, if I go to a smaller town I will be forced to converse in German.

I Braved The Rain To Buy A Rain Cover
After leaving work, doing a strenuous workout at LA Fitness in Ansley Mall, and getting a pre-vacation trim of the hairs, I headed up I-85 to REI to buy a rain cover for my backpack. For some reason I feel as if I am going to encounter more rain during this trip to Germany than I did in the previous two. I will be bringing a rain jacket, and now that I have a rain cover for my backpack I should be okay. In the worst case I can also buy an umbrella while I am there. It seems almost obscene that I paid $35 for the rain cover made by the same manufacture of the bag I own, Osprey, but if it’ll keep the water out of my bag then it’ll be money well spent.

The Case Of The Fallen Poop
When I was going to put on my daily backpack the other day I notice that it had bird poop on one of the straps, on the inside of the strap! For the life of me I couldn’t figure out how this happened. When I was doing laundry I noticed one of my shirts still had a matching bird poop mark. The only thing I can surmise is that I must have been struck on the shirt with poop, never noticed this, and transferred some to the inside of the backpack strap by putting it on. Ewww.

Make it a great Wednesday!

Paulie [eatl/ga]

Posted in My Daily Life | 8 Comments

Mobile Setup Update

As I bang out this blog post on my iPad Mini 4 with the Zagg Folio keyboard I am pleased to now know that my Skype setup on this iPad also works. I called my mother last night using the Skype iOS app and my Plantronics “Julie the Time Life operator” (google it if you are too young to get the reference) headset. The thirty-two minute call cost me a whopping 90 cents. Ha! As long as I can find reliable WiFi in Germany/Austria I can keep in touch with my mother for cheap.

Speaking Of Cheap
I left the office and headed to Midtown Wash where I was able find the machines I needed in order to get my laundry done as quickly as possible. Huzzah! I was done with laundry by 5:30pm, and having very little hunger at the time pointed the M6 toward East Atlanta. I considered stopping at Mexican(ish) restaurant and snack on chips, salsa, and queso with a couple of beers but the then I thought differently and headed straight home. When I finally had some hunger I boiled a box of elbow macaroni and mixed in a couple of cans of chicken breast and a jar of garlic-tomato sauce, making enough for dinner last night as well as three/four more meals (lunch today being one?).

For the rest of the evening I kicked around the house, put away my clean laundry, repositioned box fans, found the components needed for my Skype call, and watched an episode of last season’s Top Chef. (note to self: get TextExpander working on this mobile rig)

ITP Flickr Pic
“Ass, Gas, Or Grass – Nobody Rides For Free” (Atlanta, Georgia, United States)
Ass, Gas, Or Grass – Nobody Rides For Free
Yesterday morning I came out to find this guy (gal?) on the M6. Fortunately he (she?) was kind enough to pose for a photo before I had to shoo him (her?) off so I could head to work.

Things in the hood must be changing for this morning I saw the first slug (a skinny guy/gal) that I have ever seen in the eighteen years I have been living in the ITP Estate. By the way the German for “slug”, Nacktschnecke, is one of my favorite words because it literally translates to “naked snail”. 😁

Goodbye Spring
Though it’s felt like Summer in the ITP Estate for a few weeks now, Summer actually begins tomorrow (at least in the Eastern Time Zone).

Make it a great Tuesday gang!

Paulie [eatl/ga]

Posted in My Daily Life | 13 Comments

The Phrase You’ll Hear From Me A Lot During The Next Ten Days

“When I get back from vacation…”

As the time until I fly across the pond dwindles I’ll be using that phrase a lot, especially as an excuse for getting out of things that I should be doing.
Get the backyard cleaned up? “When I get back from vacation…”
Renovate the ITP Estate? “When I get back from vacation…”
Start riding my bicycle again? “When I get back from vacation…”

You get the idea.

Nice Rack!
I have bought a coat rack… for my new office space at “XYZ Corp”. If you look at the photo I posted last wee you’ll notice that there is no place for me to hang up a jacket, or something along those lines. So I did something about this by ordering one via Amazon. I also ordered a USB charger for my desk as well.

Both of these arrived on Saturday, and will be taken with me when my time at “XYZ Corp” ends.

ITP Flickr Pic
“Breakfast And Blogging” (Atlanta, Georgia, United States)
Breakfast And Blogging
This was the breakfast I treated myself to after working out on Friday morning. It’s a wonder why I don’t lose weight. 🙂 To be fair to myself I did not eat lunch because I knew that I would be meeting up with friends for drinks and dinner on Friday night.

We three started the night at Eleventh Street Pub, which remarkably still allows smoking. After a few drinks we crossed the street and ate at Steamhouse Lounge as we consumed a few more beverages.

I Attended A Soccer Game Match?
Though I’ve started paying attention to the German Soccer League (Bundesliga) I have not had a yearning to go to an Atlanta United game. Earlier in the week I turned down a chance to go on Saturday night because I thought that I was going to have ridden 100km in Braseltion for Jackson Brevet and would either be too tired, or would rather be rewarding myself for my efforts with a big dinner and beer. When I woke up on Saturday morning I had no drive to ride, so I bailed.

Saturday was then going to be a day of chores, of which I did some, followed by going out for dinner. While executing this plan I received another offer to go to the soccer game and decided “Oh what the hell…”.

The offer came from ITP-Reader Bob, well technically Laura who doesn’t read this space. We made a plan to meet outside the stadium. I decided to park at the office and walk to Barrelhouse on 5th for a few pre-game beers and dinner, before walking to the stadium. A funny, not funny, thing happened as I was leaving Barrelhouse, the skies opened up with rain. WTF? Fortunately I was able to wait out most of the rain under a canopy.

The game was a lot of fun, but I doubt that I will be making and concerted efforts to return for more.

Yard Work Is Fatherfucking Hard Work
Yesterday was Fathers Day in the US. Unfortunately my father has been dead for twenty years now, and spawning a child has never been part of my life’s plan.

I woke really early and got out to beat the heat and do some yard work. I pulled volunteer growth in my “flower bed”, I took a weed whacked to the overgrowth of lawn on the front curb, I “pruned” a handful of trees/bushes which have gotten out of hand, and finally I ran the lawnmower over the grass. In all I was outside for about three hours and barely put a dent in the appearance of the ITP Estate.

When I get back from vacation I need to handle the maintenance of the ITP Estate.

It was good that I got out early, because not only did I beat the heat I beat the rain that arrived hours before it was forecasted.

The rest of my Sunday was spent indoors escaping the heat. Instead of celebrating Fathers Day with brunch or dinner out, I cobbled together meals for my expanding belly. Before I go on vacation I need to clear out the refrigerator and freezer as much as possible.

Waschsalon Night
Tonight after work I need to wash a bunch of clothes at the midtown Waschsalon. From now until I depart next week I’ll be handling tasks that I need to do prior to taking off.

Make it a great Monday.

Paulie [eatl/ga]

Posted in My Daily Life | 16 Comments

I’m A Man Without A Plan

As I continue to flutter through this life unattached, and continually trying to figure out what I want out of it, I frustrate myself.

“Sell the house, move to the mountains!”
“Fix up the house, live there the rest of your life!”
“Sell everything that doesn’t fit in the M6 and travel!”

If I could just make “A Plan” I feel as if I would be better off. I thought that my nine-month hiatus would’ve helped, but it did not.

A Tale Of Two Bike Shops
When I signed up for Jackson Brevet I was full of piss and vinegar to ride, ride, ride. I have not had much cycle lust after my fall.

Also when I signed up for Jackson Brevet I thought that the packet pickup was at Atlanta Cycling on Piedmont as I remembered it being last year. I was wrong, it was at Peachtree Bikes in Buckhead. About the only good thing I can say about this was that I found a street parking lot and after inserting 15¢ into the parking meter I realized that there was enough time on the meter already for me to go in and out.

Am I going to ride tomorrow? I still don’t know, all signs point toward “Unlikely”.

ITP Flickr Pic
“It’s Your Move” (Atlanta, Georgia, United States)
It's Your Move!
How do you know you are working for a company that caters to millennials? The company has a humongous stuffed teddy bear, whose name is naturally “Ted E. Bear” or so says his name badge.

Back To Plays Worth Seeing
Last night’s trip to Horizon Theatre was worthwhile even if I didn’t get dinner for fear of being caught in the downpour that never happened.

“How to Use a Knife” is typical theater – implausible serious themes mixed with a bit of humor. The plot follows a down-and-out chef who has taken a position at his former line cook’s restaurant. The chef, who ruined his career with drugs and alcohol, befriends the dishwasher who we find out used to be a soldier in Rwanda and now is being sought for War Crimes. Each man has deep-rooted secrets revealed throughout the 115 minute play, with no intermission. This last fact may be the worst thing about the play, as it’s a lost opportunity for the theater to sell more alcohol, and it deprives the patrons the ability to pee mid-play. Though there were some minor slip ups, the performances of the four main actors were really strong.

Taking Liberties
I woke early enough to drive all the way to LA Fitness In Ansley Mall. The irony of driving past 17th Street, the exit I would take for the Atlantic Station LA Fitness in order to go to Ansley Mall was not lost on me. However, I am not in the mood to be rushed today.

I am currently ruining that workout with a lovely and relaxing breakfast at Folk Art before I head into “XYZ Corp”‘s office.

This afternoon I will be meeting my friends Hank and Bill at Eleventh Street Pub, a place I frequented twenty-two years ago when it was then the original location of The Vortex.

Paulie [eatl/ga]

Posted in My Daily Life | 11 Comments

My $4 Minute

During the past few years these used to be the days for which I waited. With the warm weather and early-morning sunrise I’d get up to the Perimeter Mall area and get a good twenty-five mile ride in prior to work. Yesterday I was up early like but instead of getting out on my bike I drove up to the LA Fitness in Atlantic Station.

My current workout routine is roughly one hour long, so I had no concern that the free parking window for Atlantic Station is two hours. However once you factor in walking to/from the club, shaving/showering, time spent wiping down equipment, and stretching my “one hour” workout took nearly two hours.

When I got back near my car yesterday and put my parking ticket into the machine I was pleased to see that I owed no money. I got into the M6, missed the exit turn, and by the time I turned around and reached the exit gate, where I had to insert the ticket once again, two hours and one minute had passed and I owed $4 in order to get out of the parking deck. DANGEN!

I have two options for going to LA Fitness in the future:

  1. shorten my routine to ensure that I can get completely done and out of the parking deck in the two-hour window
  2. go to an LA Fitness such as Decatur or Ansley Mall that has unlimited free parking

I would also be pleased if I could figure out how to make my back stop hurting. I hoped the stretching that I did post-workout would do the trick, but the pain I am suffering tells me otherwise.

One Burrito, Two Burrito
For lunch yesterday I walked over to the Woodruff Arts Center to see the food truck offerings at lunch time. I was unimpressed. In fact, though I may try again today, the novelty of food trucks, and their seemingly high prices, is waning for me.

Since I passed on the trucks i had the brilliant idea to walk over to Colony Square and eat some Mediterranean food from Cedars. I had eaten Cedars’s food about a month ago and was quite pleased. Lo and behold, when I got inside Colony Squar I was saddened to see that Cedars has closed permanently. This marks the third Colony Square restaurant to close shop in the past five months. I settled for a mediocre burrito from Moe’s.

Unless you call having dinner at El Myriachi while the skies open and dump rain on Kirkwood then I didn’t do anything big last night. I am not sure why I went for Mexican for dinner, perhaps it was to sit under a covered patio and make up for the sub-standard Mexican I had eaten for lunch.

ITP Flickr Pic
“My New Workspace” (Atlanta, Georgia, United States)
My New Workspace
Here it is, my new cubicle workspace. To give you some sense of scale the desk shown is four feet wide. I have plenty of space, and don’t think that I will mind having my back to the window. I took this photo from the work area of one of my coworkers, otherwise I might have turned the desk 90° such that this photo would have shown the back of my monitors.

Tonight’s Calendar Event
Tonight I will be going to Horizon Theatre for their performance of “How To Use A Knife”. This is the performance I mentioned and invited you all to join me, but unfortunately no one showed interest. Before the show I’ll have a beer and dinner at a local restaurant, where I go will depend on the weather.

Happy Thursday!

Paulie [eatl/ga]

Posted in My Daily Life | 8 Comments

My Multi-Cultural Jambalaya

I’ve cooked jambalaya for so long that I continue to take liberties with my tried and true recipe. The version I concocted the other night not only used basmati rice, as I’ve been using for some time, but this version also had two different types of German sausage instead of the prescribed andouille. While the wurst doesn’t have the same heft as a good andouille it was a good enough substitute given that it was what I had in the refrigerator.

Oh To Be Young And Idealistic Again
As the crowd assembled for last night’s Green Eggs and Ham event a friendly and attractive young lady intown cyclist sat at my table. We chatted for short while about bike commuting in Atlanta before two other guys joined our table and diverted her attention.

Last night’s panel had a representative for Buford Highway, the Memorial Corridor (from the Capital to Candler Road), and “south” downtown. In my mind these three regions couldn’t be any different in their outlook of the future. The wild card of the three is “south” downtown, comprising of areas like Castleberry Hill. The discussion had was far more optimistic than I could swallow. Perhaps it’s my age, perhaps it’s my pessimistic nature, but I just couldn’t buy into their dreams.

Originally I was going to remain at Manuel’s Tavern and eat dinner, but once again some light appetizers were provided so I wasn’t all that hungry. That didn’t stop me from returning home and eating the last Tupperware of my multi-cultural jambalaya for dinner, however.

ITP Flickr Pic
“I Could Live Here” (Atlanta, Georgia, United States)
I Could Live Here
This setup is in a store called “Citizen Supply” (I think) in Ponce City Market. It is reminiscent of the lofts in Dwell magazine over which I drool.

Book’em Paulie
After coming out of LA Fitness on Monday I had some time to kill before heading to Ponce City Market. In the same shopping center as LA Fitness sits a Half-Price Book store. I walked inside repeating “You don’t need any books. Do not buy any books.” to myself. I put up a good fight until I discovered a section of books in German. These books were not text books, or grammar books, but rather novels. I wound up buying one book, David Sedaris’s “Barrel Fever” (F) because it didn’t appear to use a lot of complex language.

Nobody Puts Paulie In The Corner
Well, “XYZ Corp” does as today is the day our restructing occurs and me being low man on the totem pole am getting the shitty corner “cube”, which is not really a cube at all. At least it appears that I’ll be keeping a motorized standup desk, though one not as nice as the one in my current space. If I remain at “XYZ Corp” for awhile and a different space opens you bet your ass that I’ll be requesting a transfer.

Have a great Wednesday, and return tomorrow to read about my $4 failure this morning…

Paulie [eatl/ga]

Posted in My Daily Life | 16 Comments

Tuesdays With Paulie

There aren’t many Tuesdays without German class for me these days, today is one.

Weird Coincidences?
Last week I blogged about my smoke detector issue, and that day at work we had a fire drill. Yesterday I blogged about my air conditioner, and the air conditioning on my floor was out.


Because of the rising temperature in the office I skedaddled early. Technically I was working from home, in reality I was working (out) at the LA Fitness in Decatur. Why the one in Decatur? Great question. I didn’t want to deal with parking and traffic by going to 5th Street or Atlantic Station, and I am not the biggest fan of Ansley Mall.

ITP Flickr Pic
“In Preparation For Germany” (Atlanta, Georgia, United States)
In Preparation For Germany
I have to tune my tastebuds to the types of beers served in Germany.

How To Ruin A Workout
From Decatur I fought a little traffic to Ponce City Market. The original plan was to abstain from eating until after my event, but clearly that wasn’t going to happen. I stopped into a restaurant and had two beers, one of which is pictured above, and a pile of flatbread. The event also offered some chicken bites, so I snacked on about eight of them while I had another beer. Good thing I worked out.

Paulie’s Tour de Failure
While in the office building of one company who passed on me I watched a presentation from another one who passed on me. To add insult to insult this company also declared that they were hiring at the end of the presentation.

The rest of the evening was quite interesting. I watched presentations from five other bike/tech related companies, and had a good discussion with the founder/inventor of Edison Electric Bikes. I also found out that Edison has opened a shop in Kirkwood, a short ride from the ITP Estate even on a non-electric bike.

Tonight’s Calendar Event
Instead of German class tonight I am going green! Well, I am going to an event called “Green Eggs & Ham: A Curbside Discussion of Corridor Revitalization in Atlanta”

Here’s the blurb about the event being held at Manuel’s Tavern tonight:

Green Eggs & Ham is an ongoing morning (usually) program of Generation Green of the Georgia Conservancy. Each event features a topical discussion with a compelling speaker or panel.
For our summer installment of Green Eggs & Ham, panelists and attendees will discuss the investment, design and community involvement necessary to revitalize some of Atlanta’s most historic and culturally significant transportation corridors.

From Peachtree Street to Memorial Drive to Buford Highway to Howell Mill, Atlanta’s embrace of the automobile as the dominant mode of transportation is evident. But, changes are afoot. An understanding of the multi-modal needs and wants of Atlantans is growing and the many economic benefits of inclusive corridor planning are beginning to be recognized.

Join us for an engaging discussion with panelists from various organizations to learn about the changes that have already taken place within many of Atlanta’s transportation corridors and what we may expect to see across the city in the future.

Paulie [eatl/ga]

Posted in My Daily Life | 13 Comments

Oh, That’s *This* Saturday?

I routinely pack my schedule so full that I forget when I have things scheduled. I do this as a substitute for being in a relationship.

My whole weekend outlook changed when I realized that I had a ticket for a play at Theatrical Outfit on Saturday night. Gone was my plan to do strenuous yardwork Saturday for fear that I would be too sleepy to make the show. Perhaps I would have been better off if I had.

Even though I am currently not listed in the playbill as a supporter, and I am, I usually love the plays at Theatrical Outfit. Let’s just say that “The Dancing Hankerchief” wasn’t written for me.

“Thank you for supporting a musical with very few spoken words” said the man before the play began. Uh oh, I knew that I was in trouble. As I sat there wondering if there was an intermission, and if I would return to the theater if one existed, the play ended. I didn’t record the running time but my most generous guess would be that it was 75 minutes long, which was more than enough for me. I exited the theater at 8:45pm and it was still not dark outside; though not as jarring as leaving a bar or strip club when it’s still light outside, it was a weird feeling.

The evening wasn’t a total loss however, as I ate a good meal at Par Bar before going to the theater. I had a few beers with my “A Hot Mess” sandwich, exchanged a few jokes with a very good waitress, and used up my $21 rewards card in the process. I also learned that I a, not the target demographic for a band called “Ghost”, at least not going by the appearpance of those waiting in line to enter The Tabernacle.

ITP Flickr Pic
“Sunday Starter” (Decatur, Georgia, United States)

Sunday Starter
On Sunday morning I had to perform the errands I didn’t accomplish on Saturday, namely getting gas for the M6 and going to Lowe’s. Because I wanted to go to QT, the one on Lawrenceville Highway is the closest to the ITP Estate, I decided that I should stop into Waffle House on my way to Lowe’s in Edgewood Retail District. You know, if you start your Sunday at 7:00am you can get in and out of all three of these relatively quickly.

Earn My Meals
My goal starting today, since I failed this weekend, is to “earn my meals”. In an effort to reverse my weight-gaining trend I will be forcing myself to perform some exercise daily in order to justify the food I shove into my pie-hole. I have roughly two weeks before traveling to Europe and I would love to reduce my weight and increase my physical abilities a little before going there.

Tonight’s Calendar Event
After work I will be headed to Ponce City Market for “Bike Tech Nerd Meet Up & Networking” at Gerneral Assembly. I assumed my attendance to an event with such a title would be mandatory since I have interest in both topics, and am always looking for networking opportunities.

Here is the synopsis from the General Assembly website:

About This Event

Overview: The changing technology landscape has transformed the way we interact and commute. Learn how to leverage these technologies and be part of something that makes a difference.
What You’ll Take Away: During this event, attendees learn about different bike technology in the marketplace and networking with like-minded technology professionals and bike enthusiasts!

  • Networking with local Atlanta tech companies
  • Possible job opportunities
  • Learning more about bike technology
  • Partner with advocates of the local bike community

Why It Matters: Awareness of all the cool Atlanta-based bike and technology companies who are growing and hiring!
Please note that we will be sharing this event with Hypepotamus and the Atlanta Cycling Festival.

Yeah, this seems like it’s up my alley.

All Dogs Go To Heaven
2017 has turned out to be a tough year for my friends with dogs. Yesterday another friend was lost, as the Raleigh Royalty had to put down Sugar.

Sugar, Disinterested
This was a shot I took of Sugar way back in 2009, but had never published until today.

Ny heartfelt condolences to all of my friends who have suffered loss this year.

Tears and Cheers,
Paulie [eatl/ga]

Posted in My Daily Life | 14 Comments