Finally a SXSW 2008 recap! - Wedding crashing, lobby swimming, and five 4am nights worth of free drinks (oh and also there were some internet panels)
Hey, welcome to Part 2 of my catching up before I take off for Sweden (!!). With any luck Part 3 - ski season recap! - should be up over the weekend (what, you missed Part 1? But that what's Mom's 60th bday!) Anyway, so let's finally get this SXSW recap out of the way (er, from first week in March!)
So, SXSW = South by Southwest, the interactive + film + music conference festival that's held down in Austin, TX every Spring. Alex and I went down on the Google dime in 2006 and it was amazing (esp since dodgeball was the Next Big Thing at the time). We went down again in 2007, though that was when me + Alex were brawling with Google over their neglect of dodgeball (all while Twitter was blowing up as the Next Big Thing). So 2008... I wasn't really too hot on the idea of going down. I'm kind of in-between-jobs and in-between-projects and just wasn't really that fired up for it. Then again, everyone in the world was headed to Austin... Alex, Karen, Kevin.K, Harry.H, Danny Denver and just about everyone I know from ITP whose now out in SF.
With about 2 days before the conference, Alex and Kevin start giving me for shit for not planning on coming. I did't have a plane ticket, I did't have a hotel (er, impossible to find even 2 months before the festival) and I didn't have a badge ($500!). I started IMing with Karen about maaaayyybbbee coming down - secret surprise style, which is when Karen said I could crash in their hotel for a night. And then Danny Denver turned out to have an extra place to crash. And then I started looking at plane tix and realized I had a Jet Blue voucher. And then heard that my buddy Ryan who was running a panel on Location Aware Gaming had a open spot to fill (poor Slavin had pneumonia) which would score me a freebee speaker's badge. So, early Friday afternoon - while everyone was already en route to Austin - I scrapped together my five-days-in-Austin itinerary, packed my lil' green backpack and headed to JFK. I text'ed Karen to tell her know that I managed to scam my way down and to try to keep all the ITP kids out late enough so I could make a secret surprise entrance... masterplan was to get in around 10:30p, roll into downtown Austin around 11p. Woo-hooo!
... and they I get to JFK and realize that Jet Blue has crushed my dreams yet again. My 8:45 flight delayed 2+ hours - pushing my 12am arrival time, back to around 3am.
Long story short, I told KB to keep everyone out till midnight. She knew I was super delayed and kept people out as late as possible. By the time I rolled up to the SXSW's opening night after-party (er, 3:55am) there were no more beers, no more good times, and Alex and Ron and Manlio and Danny and KB (good bless them) were all Slurry McCrunkedaLot. Still a successful late night reunion!
... just enough time for one of these...
... before making the trek over the bridge...
... to crash with Alex and Karen in their loooovveee suite. And goodnight!
Hello Saturday! The panel I fandangled myself onto ("You Are Here, Gaming and Geolocation") was one of the very first panels of the conference. Bad because the panel isn't as crowded as it would be if it was in the afternoon, good because at least you get it out of the way, leaving you stress free for the rest of the festival.
and ps: "In Between Jobs" is the best job of all jobs!
Three weeks late! So what!? Hi! My birthday = Tues 6/19, party was on Wednesday. Original invite called for a dance party on the upstairs terrace at Professor Thoms, but due to a technical error in the reservation process (er, I never called to confirm - oops) and the factthat Prof Thom's was hosting some Wednesday night BINGO, we dragged everyone a few blocks east over to Heathers.
Hey, and thanks to everyone who came out as bday #31 was pretty slamming. For the sake of comparison (and procrastination) I offer you recaps of bday #30, #29, #28, #27 on this lazy Friday afternoon. ps: No real narrative here, but please enjoy these randomly strung together images.
Looks dirty. Blindfold came from K2's Pin The Tail on the Donkey party kit...
Which is kind of like Pin the Tail on the Oil Painting of JJ.
Why hello! I'm 100 years behind on teendrama, so let's try to catch up with some G-Unit Ski Trip action. Rewind yourself, um, two weeks for this one (Feb 8-9) and brush up on the recap of last's year ski trip before I blow your mind with the tale of how my employer shuttles every employee east of CA up to Stratton, VT for two days of skiing, all the free meals you can eat and big ol' dance party.
Busses that leave early Thursday morning are for suckers, so we motivated on Wednesday night and crashed at Mount Snow. Special thanks to Mosh for the ride up (I left the Hoverpod in NYC so Will + crew could mke it up for the wkd - foreshadowing!). Around midnight I met up w/ Alex + Karen at Mt. Snow, crashed for a bit and then the three of us made the trek to Stratton around 10am. Waiting for me at the front desk? Two lift tix, keys to our condo, food voucher and a Nastar (ski race) badge.
We met up with a bunch of the G kids over the course of the day - always hard since everyone was 100% bundled up due to the cold. Man, it was freezing (super windy!) and the visibility was extra low that first day. Here's Anna + Peter + Jigglypuff riding the triple.
Rewind to last year again for a second. During the afterparty, Craig.NM got on the mic and announced the winners of the "fastest skiier" contest. I was all up in arms as I didn't even know about the race and hence did not get a chance to claim the Fastest Google Snowboarder title which is rightfully mine. So this year, I made sure to sign up as soon as I got there (and even going as far as "guaranteeing victory" - which worked great for me when I "guaranteed victory" at last year sink or skim @ Mt. Snow).
So I'm making this race out to be a big deal when it's really just 15 ski gates in a race that prob 20 people entered. But me + Craig + Mosh + Sean braved the course (er, a few times) until we felt as if we appropriately slayed it.
Okay, with the race of out of the way, we went to grab lunch. Actually, we went to grab lunch *before* the race until Jamie reminded us that we needed to get our times in before 2p (!!). So in then out, then two runs up and then lunchtime. I was anxious to make more runs so I ate some discarded buffalo burger I found laying around. Harry.H on the right, Jamie mid-soup in the bg.
After lunch everyone got kind of sleeeeeepy, but I dragged myself out for a few more runs. Good thing, as right after 2p the winds died down, the sun came out and the afternoon offered up some of the better runs I've taken all season (Stratton had tons of little pockets of untracked snow). I made a bunch of runs w/ this crew (from the left): um, don't remember your name, um, don't remember your name either, Scott.T (superstar skier) and Jenny from Denver.
I think we skied right till 4p (or maybe a little earlier - I think they closed the gondola due to wind).
Alex just forwaded me Chris Shott's "Blog Ghetto" piece which appeared in the NY Observer today. Thanks for the tdrama + dball shoutout, but Mr. Shott...
Verbal spats are common, particularly when the neighborhood’s most argumentative old-school blogger, Andrew Krucoff, is involved. But no blogger could recall an actual fistfight.
... what?! Have you not heard the story of me and Andy Krucoff brawling outside the old Barramundi (before it moved to Clinton) back in 1998? We were there for some Jupiter event (Krucoff, I think this is the same night you were trying to pick a fight w/ A.Piras's boyfriend for being French and wearing acid wash jeans)... anyway, a whole crew of us where there and somehow 20 drinks led to me and Krucoff out on the street circling each other, dukes up (... maybe I was trying to protect Piras' honor? Karate Kid II style?) when some random guy in an *ice cream truck* drove down Ludlow street at like 2am (!!), saw us punching at each other, got out of his truck and gave us the 'Whoa whoa - you guys are FRIENDS! You don't want to do this!" speech, which was apparently a good enough reason for us to head back inside and finish our >insert whatever we were drinking back in the dot com heydays here>
Oh, dball plug below (thanks, Lock). Alex + Kevin's monoki.com also got a shoutout - so old school!). You can read the whole thing here.
Still, a new blogger-centric faction has emerged. A number of prominent bloggers use Dodgeball, a social-networking service for your cell phone, created by Lower East Side denizen and Teendrama blogger Dennis Crowley, that alerts subscribers to your whereabouts and vice versa.
"I’d say it’s more the Dodgeball scene that now rules L.E.S., not the bloggers per se,” said Mr. Steele, himself a Dodgeball member, “but the difference between the two scenes might take an anthropologist to sort out."
Any yeah, I'm real behind on the tdrama again. Things you may have missed out on:
+ John Carney got hit by a car (broken leg, but he's doing okay)
+ I just bought an apt (!! - 8th and B. Floorplans + pics = soon.)
+ Since this ski season sux, I booked a trip to Beaver Creek in Feb (see: 06) and Whistler in March (see: 06)
+ Everyone's at Sundance this week (sniffle)
+ Becca and I went to the rodeo (um, sooo 3 weeks ago). Someday I'll post those pics.
+ Oh, and I'm finally all booked for SXSW in March (Austin, TX). Anyone else going?
teendrama, er, 15 days in review! (w/ exclusive turducken pics!)
I'm behind on teendrama so, loyal reader, you get stuck 12 days worth of teendrama told via 15 pics...
Mon 11/6 - Continuing the "How I Became a Master Chef" thread, JJ and I cooked up some double-breaded fried chicken the other night. That's right, double-dip, double-breaded and then fried up in two inchs of vegetable oil. I think we overdid the double-dip (I felt kind of dirty for like 2 days), but still....
Tues 11/7 - LVHRD (CLL) PHN LCKN (read: Cell Phone Lock-In) @ MOMA. Check your cell phone at the door (they put it in these little ziplock bags) and listen to this really loud band in a really big space with really bad acoustics. Come'on Happy Corp, I'm just busting you - I love you guys! Oh, free beers = good beers.
Btw, every confiscated phone was hung on this 60 ft long wall. Apparently at the end of the night they had some magic internet machine that made all the cellphones ring and light up and the same time. Didn't anyone YouTube that shit? Come'on!
While waiting for the elevator on my way out, I ran into four ninjas (and a Doug.J in a spacesuit). Btw, more pics on Flickr
Wed 11/8 - Jill's Happy Birthday dinner @ Mercadito in the E.Village. Sorry, no photos sucka.
field trip back to medway: stacey's wedding + pats/colts @ foxboro
Okay, so only 12 days late on this one. I skipped town, er, two weeks ago (11/4) to head back to Medway. Agenda: Stacey.A's wedding on Saturday and the Pats / Colts game on Sunday.
A wee bit of drama on Thursday = my car was dead. I hadn't taken it out of the lot since the last trip to the beach. Jonathan and I had to Google up some jump-startin' instructions from his Blackberry. Jesus says: make sure the red parts doesn't touch the black parts.
And since when did the price of gas drop a dollar? Hoo-boy! (Seriously, last time I filled up in Hamptons it was like $4.15/gallon).
By the way, no, I *did not* stop at Wendy's (though I did get stuck in about an hour of stand still traffic on 91 - "traffic fatality" said the local police dept when I called to find the quickest way around the mess.)
Driving home alone = a good excuse to empty out my apartment. Surfboard + snowboard gear = I'm like Johnny Extreme!
I made a field trip to the mall on Saturday (new jeans = no more hole in the balls!) and then took the hoverpod to the carwash to vacuume out all sand from the beach. Stoopid carwash wind tunnel blew letters right off on my truck. Hello eBay!
Oh, so Saturday night... Stacey's wedding! Stacey = my next door neighbor (and younger sister of my Bestest Friend Forever growing up, Mike.A - teendrama fans may know Mike from such adventures as Halloween 2003 and Beaver Creek 06).
Anyway, Stace married this guy named Mike a few months ago down in [insert carribean island here] and then scheduled the post-wedding dance party / reception in the town next to ours (Franklin, MA) for when she got back.
saturdays are for back-to-back-to-back-to-back birthday parties
Hey, I'm not even a week late with this one! Last Friday me + Courtney + Dianne took a field trip over to the Javits Center to check out the Wired Next Fest - a science fair's worth of all the stuff you read about in Wired magazine. We got there around 1pm, I paid my $12 to get in (NYU student rate, sucka!) and walked around and checked-out such half-broken exhibits such as this magic tech door... which is supposed to open a custom-sized space for you to walk through... but something was broken so I ended up having to step and rotate and squeeze my way thru (which made the guy that built it mad because some Japanese TV show was filming my twisty entrance).
Saturn's hybrid car exhibit (complete with mini projected hologram man) = boring.
Oh, and then there was the army of wifi bunnies that caused Courtney to go all AWOL. (ps: the room strangly smelled like rabbit poo. real rabbit poo. not robot rabbit poo. robots don't poo!)
Okay, so that was Friday DAY, and then Friday night (what did I do again?) Happycorp happy hour to <something else> to BackRoom to meet up w/ Steve and a very crunked Jill (and Jill's friend from Las Vegas on the left). We were posing to take this photo, steping back, back, backwards and then...
... Crunked Jill takes a digger, we all crashed down on this table of girls and their drinks, teacups spill, candle gets knocked on the rug (one girl yelled "FIRE!") and then we just rolled around on the floor for like two minutes. Crunked Jill was all "ooohhhhhhh my leeeegggggg" and we, of course, were all "whatever"...
... until she forwarded me this pic on Monday. Ha! Crunked Jill, you so crazy!
the alex + karen wedding experience (dance party + tattoos + limos + karaoke)
Okay friends, are you sure you can handle the awesomeness of this Alex + Karen wedding recap? (and only 10 days late!) Quick background: Alex + Karen = friends of mine from grad school @ NYU (come'on, you already know this!). While Alex and I worked on just about every project at ITP together (how sweet), me + Alex + Karen (and Giselle! Boomer!) worked on larger Special Group Projects together. Oh, and these days I work with Alex @ G on the dodgeball stuff. Good times! So, ready?
Let's start at Friday's rehearsal dinner - reserved for all the VIPs who get to be in the wedding (pow!). I was a Groomsman. Or an usher. Or something. Whatever. I got to wear a tux.
At dinner, family and friends gathered around round-after-round of appetizers and wine. When it came time to sit, we split into a Kids Table and a Grown Ups table. The poor bride and groom-to-be got stuck with the grown ups(, suckas!)
Now before we get too deep into this recap, let me take a second to say that the A+K wedding was perhaps the best wedding I've been to. I mean, everything was so thought out and planned out and pretty much perfect. Let me trying to call out some examples. See, that way I'll be able to remember when it comes time for My Special Day (hopefully with that girl I made out w/ at Steve Swozowski's party in 7th grade).
Best Wedding Ever Example #1: Everything on the menu was picked out by A+K. Right? I mean, it seemed like it. Lobster roll apps? Karen! Pork wrapped in bacon? Alex! Root beer floats! Well done!
I stole this video from Manlio, but here's me breaking down our reherasal dinner strategy - Kevin and I went splitty-splitty. (the 2nd part of the video is from the post-wedding reception, btw) [video]
Manlio says: "I think my favorite part is Kevin’s “I can’t believe I’m going to be in this video” look."
Wait, did you hear what I said a second ago? I said *pork wrapped in bacon*. Perhaps the most delicious thing I've ever tasted.
After the rehersal dinner, we trekked about 100 miles over to Floyd, this bar in Brooklyn I've heard of a thousand times (mostly via dodgeball check-ins from A+K). Anyway, bocce courts + drink specials!
Micah in the white. Oliver in the blue. Karen in the black. Amy (?) in the pink. Kevin gesturing wildly in the background.
Only two of these pics in this recap, I swear!
A+K retired early (smart!). Me + Kevin.K trekked into Manhattan and drank till 5am (dumb!). I met up w/ Dianne and Jen.D who were DJing at Backroom (hi!). I kind of heart this photo.
Fast forward to the next morning. Team Groomsmen met up w/ Alex for brunch at Schiller's (why don't I have a pic of this?).
When we went to settle up the bill, I busted out these temporary tattoos that I had made up for the wedding. I brought maybe 15 of them to brunch to give out to the wedding party. We left a few extras behind for the waitstaff.
... but not to worry, there are plenty. (er, you have to order them in batches of 1000 - foreshadowing!)
Alex's bachelor party (or how we got our asses kicked by 8-year old girls playing paintball)
Another, er, 10 22 days behind on this one (!!), but *three weeks ago* (as in August 5th) two car loads of dudes headed up to Vermont in celebration of Alex's last days of bachelorhood (13 days and counting as of today).
Cast of characters included Alex's friends from high school (Oliver + Nuti), some friends from college (Gabe + Kevin), friends from grad school (me + Manlio) and a softball friend with a busted wrist (Matt).
We skipped work on Friday, choosing instead to face the Thursday night commuter traffic. Alex and I both drove in, parking in the shitty ripoff lot just down the street from work. A wink and a smile to the not-so-sweet-sweet parking attendant girl and my "oversized vehicle" came in weighing $10 bucks cheaper than Alex's truck.
We took 87 thru Albany (as opposed to the 95 -> Wendys -> Mohegan Sun -> 91 route) which may actually be better come ski season (Will + J, take note) as there's a 24-hours supermarket on the way up. Team RR zoomed ahead at speeds exceeding 90 mph, giving us a comfortable lead over Team Pliot. Comfortable enough to hit the 24-aisle supermarket, pick up the biggest pack of ground beef you've ever done seen (+5 lbs!) and still feel as if we'd beat the other crew to the house by 45 minutes.
... which was actually more of a they-beat-us-by-30-seconds scenario. We were at the house by 12p and finished off a good 60 beers by 10am the next morning.
Speaking of which, I'm not sure whether to thank Jonathan (and the rowdy crew he brought up for *another* bachleor party the week before) or to thank the sweet old Grandma + Anne combo - but to whomever left two fridges full of beer behind, Alex's Wedding Party salutes you.
On a sidenote, weather = perfect. Three days worth in fact. Teendrama fans have seen this view prob 20 times, but suck it, here is it is again.
So, eight dudes in the woods for a weekend? What's to do?
Activity #1. Horseshoes! A few months back, JJ went to VT and built a horseshoe pit (not sure why exactly). I gave him shit for it because, well, he poured the cement (and the metal rod that sticks into the cement) pretty much in the middle of the driveway (foreshadowing for some drama this winter for sure)... but the horseshoe pit turned out to be pretty rad.
I put my digicam on the line to bring you this expose from deep within the land of fallen horeshoes. [video]
After a few rounds, someone noticed the clumps of hair left over (and blowing around the driveway) from JJ's sweet new haircut. Gross.
Alex and I shot a segment with Rocketboom last week. We met them down in the Lower East Side (@ Local and Magician), showed them how dodgeball worked and introduced them to our 800 closest friends. I was actually a little stressed about how the clip was going to turn out (a little rushed, a little crunked), but it looks pretty good.
Watch here. (you can use the widget on the lower right to jump right to the dodgeball part)
Things that got cut:
+ Will McD wasted
+ Staged Becca / DPS make-out scene
+ Me talking about K.Flip's girlfriend
Things that didn't get cut:
+ Becca eating pretzels
+ Dudes pounding beers
five nights in San Francisco (and one day at the Ewok Village)
A few days late here, but whatever. I spent most of last week shuttling myself back and forth between San Francisco (Clift Hotel) and Mountain View (Google). Buckets and buckets of meetings, but the trip was broken up nicely thanks to such distractions as Wednesday's "Welcome to San Francisco, Harry!" party @ Lazlo. (trivia: did you know Harry is working out of Mt. View for the month?).
After showing up two hours late (thanks to the sushi waitress that forgot about us and the 800 miles trek through the sketchiest neighborhood of all time - think: old Detroit City in RoboCop), we met up with a crowd chock full of SXSW alumns and dodgeball superusers including such special guests as: ValleyWag Nick, Ms. Aubrey, Danny Denver, Eris Free.
Thursday night. Grabbed dinner with Sean.S and headed to Boca to see some band called the Extra Action Marching Band. Aaaccccctually, the night before (@ Lazlo) everyone was chatting them up in a "Are you going? You gotta go!" type of way, so when Sean called me and was like "I'm heading to this. You want to go?" I was in.
Two opening bands: #1. a shirtless dude in a cowboy hat riding a pogo stick horse (huh.) and 2. Golem, some Yiddish band that made the place rock like some hipster bar mitzvah (apparently they're from NYC). Extra Action came on next - essentially a, er, hipster marching band complete with huge instruments (tuba, trumbone, drums, etc.) and flag-waving color guard girls in thongs (huh!).
And, so they don't play on stage... they just kind of wander around the venue playing wherever they want (after making a grand entrance from the back of the room). So, the whole place turned into one sweaty, drink-spilling, marching band dance party... which was pretty awesome.
And got more awesomer when they led people out into the streets - Pied Piper style - for another dance party. Girls on cars. People waving flags. Cars honking because they're blocking traffic. Pretty rad.
Anwyay, they're coming to the east coast soon, so check it out. (ps: I bought 2 tix for the Knitting Factory show)
Sat 8/12 @ Kitting Factory [tix]
Tue 8/15 @ Boston
Wed 8/19 @ Brooklyn
CheeseBikini himself, toasting up a round of the worst tasting liquor ever.
Not shown: Anthony Townsend and some other dude who was wearing a Dooker tee.
Hi there! Nothing too scandalous, just some pics from the weekend. Friday = kind-of No Data @ VoodDoo Lounge (aka the basement of Wakki Wallys) and Saturday = Manlio's going away party @ Loreley.
Friday. Grellan is now on this "no more beer, only liqour" kick which basically means instead of drinking 8 Bud tallboys, he consumes 8 glasses of scotch. The end result consistently looks like this.
On the other hand, Matt.U and his Tiger Lager make the ladies smile.
Rina showed up. It was her birthday. I bit her face.
Meghan showed up too. I told her I'd give her $1 if she could unhook this random guy's helmet from his bag without him knowing it. No luck. (but, how cool would it have been if the dude turned around after getting his drink and - blam! - Meghan's sitting there wearing his helmet! Not so cool? Die.)
I know, I know, I know... SXSW was so two two-and-a-half weeks ago, but come'on, I'm busy! The quick recap is that Team Dodgeball (me + Alex + Harry) were down in Austin for five days, er, two weeks ago. SXSW = short for South by Southwest, a two week interactive + film + music festival. Being the dorks we are (or: SXSW rookies), we were only there for the interactive piece (we flew out when everyone else was flying in, but we'll fix that next year). Okay, so ready for this? (It's a long one.)
So, Day 1 = Saturday. I was on a panel called "Online in Offline Spaces" with Scott H. (MeetUp) + Mike.S (Socialight) + Molly.S (Yale) moderated by Heath.R (Squidoo). We were up against James Surowiecki (aka Johnny Wisdom of Crowds) in the room next door, so it was awesome to see that we still had a spill-over crowd. The panel went well and it was a lot of fun (I think panels are always better when you know the people beforehand - e.g I went to grad school with Mike, Molly acted as an informal advisor to my thesis, and I know Scott just from around NYC).
I brought a packback full of dodgeball t-shirts and gave them all out (all 50 of them!) in about 4 minutes flat after the panel.
Fast forward through a day's worth of keynotes + panels and we get to the official Opening Night Party thrown by Frog Design. Our first intro to the SXSW scene = we were swimming in free drinks.
Harry.H chatting up the nice girl he sat next to on the plane. Player = please!
When Frog's free drink tab ended, we headed in search of the next party. Our Brand New Best Friend Justin(tm) (aka Janelle's pal from back in the day) Dan.M's friend (with glasses - hi!) was nice enough to squeeze something-like eight of us in the back of his Jetta. I got stuck riding Alex's lap.
superbowl weekend part 2: hungover superbowl party
So, four days later, here's Part II of SuperBowl Weekend. Don't get too excited, this part is pretty boring. I had a bunch of kids over Sunday to watch the game. We were all pretty beat up from the No Data the night before.
Seattle vs. Pittsburgh = not a particularly exciting game (esp compared me + Jay travelling to Jacksonville last year to see the Pats vs. Eagles), but I went to high school with Matt Hasselbeck (er, and Boston Rob, if you really want to dig up deep cut D-list celebs) so we were rooting for Seattle.
Youngna took a bunch of pics. In fact, I stole a lot of these pics from here. You'll easily be able to tell which are mine and which are hers. Her digi is very fancy.
G-Unit ski trip @ stratton (+ bonus 2 days @ mount snow)
Okay, this is going to be a long one. Two days at Stratton for the G Skip Trip (East Coast version) and then another 2 days at Mount Snow. Ready?
The story (we'll call it Part 1) starts Wednesday night. Not wanting to deal with the whole catch-the-bus–at-5am drama, Team Lunch Club (er, 9 of us from G) decided to head up Wednesday after work and crash at my parent's house at Mount Snow. Five hours later (thank you Cross County Parkway + place with "Best Pizza in CT 2004") and we got to VT to find...
... that it had been dumping for the past day or so! We didn't really get anything in NYC, but there was agood 8-12 inches in Vermont.
We shoveled ourselves up the stairs, grabbed some of the finest light beers VT has to offer and then spent some quality time with Guitar Hero. (Sean.O = reigning champ)
Got up pretty early on Thursday morning with our goal being to beat the army of buses that were leaving from NYC, get to Stratton by 9:30 or so and be on the lift by 10am. We got out a little later than expected, grabbed some breakfast bagels down the street (delicious, btw) and made the 25 min trek from Mount Snow to Stratton...
... and, yes, were on the lift by 10am. Pow!
Hold on for a second, because it's worth noting how amazing the ski trip setup was. When we arrived, there were tables set up for us to check our bags, tables set up for us to check-in to our hotel and tables for us to pick our little packets of G* Goodness... a free lift ticket and three meal vouchers!
A bunch more has happened since then, but it was kind of nostalgic when Kevin.K pointed out a reference to dodgeball in the latest Wired (January 06)... it's not a piece about us or even the mobile + social space, but it mentions us in passing as if "Oh yeah, dodgeball. Everyone already knows about that. Huh."
Anyway, I thought that was kind of cool.
ps:click for bigger image, first sentence under "Get the 411 on Anything".
I was planning on only staying out till 1am or so since I had to catch a train to Boston in the morning (more on that in a second), but that plan didn't work out so well...
... I ended up leaving around 3:30 and swunging by Harry's apt (Harry = dodgeball employee #3!) to see if his "It's 30 Degrees in November and I'm Having a Party on My Roof" party was still going on. After buzzing the wrong apt for like 10 minutes, me + Krucoff snuck our way upstairs to find a bunch of people making out and a crunked Harry nursing a 40oz bottle of the cheapest tequila that could be found in the LES. I was in bed by 4am.
Zzzzz. I got up at 7:30am, left my apt at 8am and caught the 9am train to Boston. Ravi and Sonia, the hosts of the hit in-car talkshow "DriveTime", picked me up from at around 1:30 and gave me a ride Harvard Business School.
Four days of Halloween is a little much, no? See, that's the problem with these Monday holidays. I'm looking forward to taking tonight off.
(Costumes? Oh, we'll get to that.)
Start on Friday with Youngna's 23rd birthday @ Dove (happy bday, yp!). Friday = too early to be wearing costumes so I went as a Johnny Red Sweater. Actually, no one was really dressed up except for The Happy Corp kids - Doug rolled into Dove in this giant domino suit... and 4 hours later (by the time we were all at the Magician) Matt rolls in wearing, er, another giant domino costume (hence the "Die domino die!" dodgeball message for anyone left confused).
Anyway, late night + Youngna's birthday + Youngna really crunked + Youngna's super tiny frame + giant domino costume = Youngna toppled over, on the floor, wearing this stoopid suit and unable to get up turtle-on-its-back style. Hahahahahahaha.
I don't know anything about football. I mean, I know enough to root for the Pats and understand what's going on, but I don't track stats or play fantasy football or chat it up with people about the best defensive tackle in the AFC blah blah blah. Off the top of my head, I couldn't name 10 non-QB players in the NFL.
But I am in this football pool with Alex, my Dad, Jonathan, and like 50 other people. It's a weekly pick-em thing - whoever pics the most per week wins. Whoever has the most correct picks at the end of the season wins like $500 bucks.
Jonathan and especially my Dad labor over these pics every week. I don't know any better, so I just pick them at random. In last year's pool I tried tricking my friends into making pics for me ("What do you like more: pork chops or applesauce?" where "pork chops" = home team and "applesauce" = away team). I don't know how the line / spread / whatever gets set for games, but it seems like those people know what they're doing. And if you're in a pool where you have to beat the spread, the odds are like 50/50, right?
Anyway, this year, I simplified the process and whipped up a webpage that makes random pics for me. Every Friday I hit this page and then just copy and paste the picks into the Sportsline pool and that's it.
I was telling my Dad about this and he was like "You're just wasting your money!" (meaning the $50 I paid to get into the pool), but I think I beat him like 3 of the last 4 weeks.
I tied for third place for this week and, after 5 weeks, I'm tied for 3rd place overall. Pow!
Back in the dot–com glory days when I was working at Vindigo, some co-workers and I came up with The Great Gym Wager(tm). It was basically a contest to see who could go to the gym the mostin a 30-day span - 15 people, $20 each, winner keeps all. I think we all expected to average 3 days a week, but the three of us who won (me + Nick + Ariel, recognize) ended up going the full 30 days in a row. It was crazy cut throat.
Anyway, Alex and I kicked it off again here at dodgeball HQ. If you want to play along at home, he's got quick write-up of the rules up on The Flickr.
two day bender: alex's 29th bday and dpj's 30th bday
Ugh. This was the most crunked up weekend ever with two back-to-back 6am nights (I am only slightly of proud of that). Let's start on Friday for Alex's 29th (34th!!) bday throwdown. Dinner + drinks + karaoke (this pic is from like 2am, but we'll get to that).
First up = dinner. Six of us @ Gyu-Kaku, a grill-yer-own-meats type of place near Astor Place. Little corns, little hot dogs, little meats. That bag of foil contains a bunch of mushrooms marinating in butter. Verdict: delicious.
Manlio and Kevin prepare to battle the meats. Beware of Kevin's patented Devil Eyes(tm).
Post dinner we hit up Porch Bar on Avenue C. About 20 people stopped by x 4-5 drinks each (or so it seemed) and the tab only came to like $150 = a birthday gift from the waitress?
Hi. And welcome to the Opeartion Endless Summer: Narragansett Beach Weekend 2005 Teendrama Recap. Our good pal Manlio from our ITP @ NYU days was nice enough to invite a crew of us out to his mom's house in Rhode Island for the weekend. We decided it best to take Friday off, leave Thursday after work and try to beat the traffic out of the city.
A solid head start to beat weekend traffic? = not so much. We cleverly tried to skip the FDR and 95 with the help of Alex's mapping skills and opted for the Merritt... which turned out to be pretty jammed up. Fearing that we'd never make it to back to 95 (and, more importantly, the Wendy's @ Exit 40), Kevin busted out his sidekick in search of an alternate plan. Luckily no such Plan B was needed (and the 99 cent nugs were delicious as ever.)
You'll never guess who we ran into on our way to the beach... our old friend Mohegan Sun!!! We stopped by to say hello.
I'm assuming the mailman already delivered the new issue of "Discover" magazine to your doorstep, but just in case you missed it, Steven Johnson (author of Emergence and Everything Bad is Good For You) wrote a piece about Dodgeball in this month's issue (September 2005).
I like this piece a lot - esp the "location based + affinity + Jane Jacobs = urban Long Tail" spin.
Alex and I spent most of last week hanging out in San Francisco / Mountain View visiting Google HQ. We stayed at the Clift, rode the shuttle bus a few times (mobile wi-fi!) and met up w/ a few friends Wednesday night @ Red Room before we headed back east.
Me + Brian Lam + PW.
Brian is my pal from Wired mag. Pam and I have been friends since kindergarden.
Me + Nat.
Nathania is a friend from Syracuse. She landed a brand new job just 2 hours before this pic was taken.
(this photo was alternatively titled: "cute haircut vs. stoopid haircut")
Me + Mike Yap.
I used to carpool to high school with this kid. I stole his cigarette lighter one time in high school and he hit me so hard I couldn't move my arm for like three days.
Google has a free haircut truck. Rad. (Neither of us braved it)
ps: I'll be back in SF next week (6/28 - 6/30) or so to speak at Where 2.0. Ping me if you want to grab a drink.
Today = first day of work. First day of work in like 3 years actually (if you exclude my freelance stint @ MTV). I bought new sneakers.
So, over the past few days, I've gotten emails for just about every person I've ever met (which is rad, so thanks). However, none of them compares to the dodgeball hip hop track Alex's friend Patrice put together.
This is the official EP of the new dodgeball.com. We'll be shooting the video soon, rolling down Broadway throwing GOOG gang signs.
Wednesday was a better than average day. After a full afternoon of rounding up documents, signing paperwork, last minute Kinko's runs and conference calls with lawyers, we closed on Google's acquisition of dodgeball. 5:32p calls for celebratory tallboys.
After another hour of launching the new site, sending out an email to all our users and dealing with last minute bugs and post-close customer service, Alex and I headed to the ITP show to see end-of-semester final projects and then to 12" for both Girls DJ Night (aka "Essexy" or "Ho Data") and an ad-hoc dodgeball launch party.
(man, I need a haircut.)
The regulars. Except for 6'5" here - where you been Josh?
Becca bought me some roses from the guy that walks around from bar to bar with flowers in a bucket.
It was all Randy's idea. He sent the email asking everyone to meet at Loreley - this German place with an outdoor garden down on Rivington. I walked in to find Randy + Krucoff drinking out of mugs the size of coffee pots. Come'on!
Then everyone showed up. Cinco de Mayo? + nice weather? + dodgeball? + random Razorfish reunion party? - I dunno what it was, but everyone was there.
Jill rolled in around (ha - I have no idea what time) with Sweet Sweet Kate and Sweet Sweet Juila. Both look this blurry in real life.
Ever heard of MeetUp? It's a website that helps people organize, well, meet ups in physical spaces around affinity interests. For example, you're a Dungeons & Dragons fan in rural Massachusetts? Create a MeetUp, pick a date + time + place to meet and a whole bunch of D&D folks will show up ready to play.
There's all sorts of MeetUps - those for people that like small dogs, knitting, or Howard Dean. In NYC, we always end up running into the PhotoBlogger MeetUp which meets from time to time at The Magician.
Anyway, I wanted to wrap my head around all the great things MeetUp can do for you, so I started a group called the NYC Make Out Club. We met twice - once at the Magician (which was tame) and once at Local 138 (where it was a make out factory!).
But, alas, MeetUp started charging for groups today - $19/month! So kids, I guess that's the end. Looks like you'll have to do your making out in the parked van under the Williamsburg Bridge or something.
By the way, during out two-month run, we had a bunch of the sketchy people join the group (all of which I had to kick out). I eventually set the group up so it was "invite only", after which I received this message:
Subject: A message from someone interested in NYC Make Out Club
Date: April 13, 2005
Hi, I'd like to join this group. You can learn about me by checking out my website, Dean's Den, at http://www.hannotte.net. Thanks!
Unlucky, as if MeetUp wasn't going the pay route and this wasn't the end of the Make Out Club, this dude would totally be in. (make sure to turn up your speakers before clicking the link).
After finally wrapping up with ConQwest (and MF was in post-election mode), I headed up to try out place in Vermont. I think 10 of us went in all - special guests Rob (and Vero) and MF (and Meg) from Boston.