Friday, February 27, 2009

Bonus Day

In one of those questionnaires I've done, I've stated Bonus Day is probably my favorite day of the year. Generally we would receive a Memo sometime in January and we would get a deposit early February. This year January came and went without a memo. Anyway I figured with all the troubles that the financial services industry was having, I should be grateful just to be employed. Which I am don't get me wrong.

Because we have a revolving door of managers here, I got a pseudo-review yesterday from a potential new manager, which seems to be the norm around here. I mean with the way we do things, they should be called previews and not reviews. She didn't have my self-assessment survey [which was sterling btw], so there wasn't really anything to talk about! I wanted to keep my streak alive of being the top rated person in my department haha.

Then we started discussing compensation and we had a raise-freeze, which was expected. The company had pay cuts for VPs, directors, MDs and senior MDs. Thank goodness I'm not one of them [/sarcasm off]. They aren't gonna give people raises when they're getting cuts! Then we discussed bonuses and I actually was selected for one, since apparently discretionary doesn't mean guaranteed haha. Obviously it was a fraction of last year's, which was smaller than the prior year. So it's like decreasing income [which is better than negative income - yes that's an actual term used]. Yay - my bonus jumped into the cold part of the ocean. Part of me is like "woohoo" I got something, then another is like "that's it?" But that's how it is with money though - it's never enough!

In prior year's I was quick to splurge on something, since it always coincided with my birth-month. This time I think I'ma just save it for a stormy day. Anyway I've treated myself to enough toys last year to last awhile.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Year of the Gentleman Tour

I'm tryna knock out blogs like I'm a boxer. So obviously this blog is about a month past due, but oh well. Roland, TiffanyBlue, Michelle, G and yours truly attended his show in Oakland a few weeks ago. None of us really venture out to the 'town so we drove through a hood part to get to the Paramount Theatre. Once we got there, it was pleasantly nice, since it was near Lake Merritt around their downtown area.

Anyway the show started with this group called Electric Red or something. OMG they were horrible. They were like 4 Adina Howards, except with a 1/4 of her talent. You know how JJ Fad had that 'Supersonic' song? "The S is for Super and the U is for unique...?" They had a song called 'P***y" I think, that went like "The P is for Power and..." blah blah. OMG they were horrible, both vocally and visually and content-wise. We came too early.

Grammy nominee Jazmine Sullivan performed next, and some the crowd was feeling her. To me nothing really differentiates her from the countless other Neo-Soul artists out there. Yawn.

Then came the headliner! Woo-hoo! Thanks to Share-Bare for clarifying an exclusion I initially missed on my playlist. Anyway since I'm old now, my memory may be a little fuzzy, so if I might have some in the wrong order. His lineup for the day was:

01. because of you
02. lie to me
03. nobody
04. single
05. so you can cry
06. so sick
07. mad
08. stop this world
09. do you
10. irreplaceable*
11. spotlight*
12. take a bow*
13. let me love u*
14. make it work
15. go on girl
16. sexy love
17. miss independant
18. closer

We all bet what song he was going to open with, and Roland actually won. What he won, I'm not sure haha. After a few songs in, it did seem like he was gonna sing the whole YOTG album! Yes, he even performed the latter 1/3 of the joint, of which I don't really play. He had a lil storyline to preface most of his songs, and I pretty much knew what he was gonna sing!

However the more he talked about girl problems, the more I questioned his heterosexualness. I mean I'm sure he's had GF's in the past, but so did Lance Bass. He went on to sing some songs he wrote, which I already knew [duh!]. If you're able to pen "Irreplaceable," how straight can you be?

Then he came with his hits, and his closer was obviously "Closer." Take another look at the list, and I was deeply saddened that he didn't do "Can We Chill!" Grrrrr! I mean he even made a video for it! Considering it was one of his faster paced songs, and he did "Do You" and "Make It Work" from the same album, I was certain he was gonna perform it. But no he didn't =(

But regardless, it was a dope show, like a 100x better than Musiq's. Unfortunately I couldn't boogie as much as I wanted to, since a few rows back my sisters and female cousins [and Lorilie!] were sitting directly behind me! Oh well, at least I came out of there with a free Ne-Yo poster hahaha.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Happy Birthday Day

Whoa so its finally here. I just want to thank Tiger Woods for waiting 8 months and debuting again on my birthday. That's a cool gesture Eldrick! I also want to thank the Roman calendar for making today Ash Wednesday, to remind me that I need to fulfill my resolutions and habits that I mentally put forth in the beginning of the year. I want to thank Mark Zuckerberg too, for if we didn't have his medium, then I wouldn't get a fraction of the greetings on Facebook. I thought about giving that up for lent, but I wouldn't be able to function haha.

Anyway, here's some crap I'm trying to do, starting in Lent. Some will be sacrificed these 40 days, other's will try to be a livelihood thing.

- I'm giving up Carbonated beverages! It went from Diet Coke, to soda, to this. I had my last diet coke at BIX last night, and it was $4, so that was a sign haha.

- To exert some physical activity 4x a week. I bought a foam roller, I have the perfect pushup [although mine's probably looks irregular], have a gym downstairs and a gym membership. To be fair, I've included golf here. So what, I'm in my 30s already.

- Not to buy any clothes/gear/kicks. Well let me specify, to not spend add'l money, since I have quite a few gift cards left. I got my birthday 'fit the other day, not to be confused with my birthday suit ladies.

- To sell 40 items already in my possession. I think this is feasible. I have random crap laying around that I could liquidate.

- To commence studying. Well, we'll see about that!

- Try to improve self. Whatever that means I'm for it. It feels like once in your 20s, you could eff around and stuff. But I'm 30 now, and honestly it feels that I need to start playing chess rather than checkers.

Thanks everyone for the greetings thus far! Phone calls, texts, IMs, wall posts and in-person, and even more thanks if you chose more than one avenue!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Happy Birthday Eve

So I have less than 12 hours to accomplish everything I wanted to do by the time I turn 30, and boy have I fell short. Slightly disappointed, but then again I did outline some high goals. But I guess it's time to rewrite that goal book or simply turn that 30 into a 35. Or maybe a 33, since that was Jesus's amount of years, and homie accomplished a lot.

But you know what? I think I'm on the right track even though I haven't hit a few benchmarks. A .300 hitter could still be a Hall-of-Famer. It's like running a half-marathon. It would've been nice to do it in sub-2, but I'll take a 2.5 hour pace. What matters is that I ran the damn thing. So my goals are just delayed and are still on my radar, its just a matter of putting the pedal to the floor.

Another thing I just want to emphasize is to focus on what I have rather than what I don't. And I think I have a lot! By no means am I talking about material things, but in terms of stuff that makes me happy - a loving fam, caring friends, being employed now, gas in the whip, matching socks - I'm grateful for that ish!

I think regardless of how old I am I'm gonna be a kid at heart. I often say that I'm always gonna feel like this due to having 4 older brothers. Certain times I need to man up, and I believe I do, but I should let the kid out of me more. I think we all should!

And despite not reaching some goals by the time I was 30, oh well! Think about it - we only chose 30 because it's a round number. I can't think of any other significance there is to it. It's not that much of a landmark year people maybe it out to me. It just has a "0" at the end. But you only turn 30 once! And same with every other year guys.

On the real though, the 20s have been my best decade, and it'll only get better from here.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Dear ReegSpeak,

Sorry, I've spending a lot of time with Facebook lately, so I've been kinda neglecting you. Just so you won't feel out of the loop and to the ReegSpeakers that don't frequent FB, here are 50 things folks might not know about me. Most of it is stupid, and some of it is stupider haha. I'll go on a FB hiatus one day...

01. I love leading zeroes and always add them when I can.
02. When I grab a newspaper, I never ever take the top one b/c I'm scared its incomplete.
03. I blogged loyally from 2002 to 2005, then took a 3 year hiatus and started again last year. Similarly Jesus has a few years missing in the New Testament, I have a few years missing on ReegSpeak.
04. I have every SLAM Magazine from #1 [that Larry Johnson cover] to #100, and even the regional covers too.
05. I once shot a 77 at Sharp Park Golf Course in the summer of 1997, but haven't been south of 80 in years.
06. I have long hairy toes, and I was once nicknamed L.T. [for Long Toes] by someone who's actually on my FB friend list.
07. My frosh suitemate was named Keegan. Regan and Keegan - how cool.
08. I love goat meat [Kambing in tagalog]. Like seriously love it. I probably was a hunter in my prior life.
09. I read magazines from the back to front. If I wasn't a hunter, I was probably a Japanese kamakazi in my prior life.
10. I maintain a mental bucket list and only reveal them until the goal actually came to fruition or materialized.
11. I question the 'best by' dates and 'expiration' dates of a lot of food products. I mean if its 'best by Oct-08' that means its at least good by Jan-09 yeah?
12. I have an empty bottle of Cristal in my kitchen that I’m saving for my first rap video.
13. I love watching American Greed: Scams on CNBC.
14. I went to Ballet School when I was around 5 years old, which explains my gracefulness. I was still the hardest dude there though. So yeah, I had ballet lessons and golf lessons as a youngin but not swimming lessons - go figure.
15. Before the Internet, I used to transcribe my favorite rap songs and type them up in WordPerfect on my old 386.
16. At one time, I had every Kenny Anderson basketball card that ever existed. A big middle finger goes out to John Starks!
17. I matriculated at UC-Santa Barbara before even visiting the campus.
18. The Count of Monte Cristo is one of my favorite stories. Something about vengeance makes me happy.
19. I won a burrito eating speed contest b/c I could chew faster than a squirrel. Freebirds FTW!
20. I bought records without having turntables. Buying for the future I guess.
21. The itchiest part of my body are my nipples.
22. I always always need to read something when its time for #2, even if I wake up in the middle of the night for those 4am bombs and my contacts aren't on and such.
23. Contrary to belief, I've never owned a pair of Nike Cortez, Guess overalls, a Starter Parka or Cross Colour jeans. I had them suede Ellesses though.
24. I once got a parafin wax while waiting in the PI and it was one of the worst pains my feet ever felt. They sure were buttery smooth afterwards though.
25. Some may already know about all my kicks, but I also have mad socks too!
26. I really don't have much free time on my hands, but you might think otherwise based on my internet habits
27. One time on the solo drive back to UCSB, I wanted to see if I could make the trip back without getting out of my car. But I really had to pee-pee after drinking a bottle of gatorade. So I just said screw it and took a piss in the [wide-mouthed] empty bottle, which was partially inspired by that scene in Dumb & Dumber. So I never did get out of my car during that trip.
28. I've seen Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera live, but neither Nas or Jay-Z.
29. If kicks/hip-hop/hoops were the only categories on Jeopardy, then I'd be Ken Jennings.
30. When I rap along to songs, I skip the expletives, even if I'm by my lonesome.
31. I once scored a double-eagle on Fleming's 5th hole, which odds are estimated at 1 million to 1. Yes, even rarer than a hole-in-one!
32. I never had my own room until I started paying rent.
33. I haven't used a brush or comb in the past 6 years, nor do I own any.
34. I once acted in a play as the cross-dressing gay Asian version of Anton in an adaption of "Men On Film" from the In Living Color show. I wore some pleather girl pants and some leopard top haha. It was quite possibly the most embarassing thing I've ever done and hopefully will never show up on YouTube.
35. I once plaigarized one of my brothers papers [Ryan obviously] and received an A, after being inspired by Ben Seaver selling Carol Seaver essays from Growing Pains.
36. I have every bank transaction itemized on Microsoft Money since 1998.
37. I've probably seen Spaceballs over 50 times but the Star Wars only once or twice.
38. This numbering methodology was partially inspired by The Roots discography.
39. I once yakked on my roommate's bed. Sorry Eric.
40. My UC application was returned to me because I put "02/25/97" as my birthday rather than "02/25/79." No wonder why UCLA [my first choice] didn't accept me!
41. I brush my teeth in the shower, and sometimes I spit out onto my package, which feels kinda good.
42. I saw Tiger Woods [at a US Open qualifier at Lake Merced] and Lebron James [at a AAU run] when they were both 16 years old. Coincidentally, they share the same birthday [Dec 30th].
43. I once ordered 6 pairs of Jordans from Finishline but received like 20 pairs. I didn't feel bad because its not my fault that had poor internal controls. This was before Sarbanes-Oxley went into effect.
44. I always check for my name on those Inter-Office envelopes that get passed around work, to see if I've been through that envelope before.
45. I once killed a bird on the 3rd hole at Harding with a piercing drive down the middle, and once hit a man on the 18th hole with an errant approach shot. Different rounds however.
46. I met Boyz-II-Men at the Manila Airport, but never saw the pic that we took with them.
47. I probably read every NBA boxscore ever since I could read, as I always read The Sporting Green in the car ride since 1st grade.
48. That above along with watching scrambled television is probably the reason I have poor vision.
49. Thanks to my older brothers [well maybe just Jon], I saw my first pr0n flick when I was 5 years old and wondered why the guy's "pee" was gooey haha.
50. I've never smoked a cigarette or even took a puff of one in my 29 years of living. I'm going for immortality!