Starry Wisdom

Entropic Words from Neilathotep

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Condo Conversion: It’s a Wrap

I’m a bit slacky in my once a week posting, I swear I’ll try to get better, but stuff has been busy lately. One of the things which has been keeping me busy the past month (or really since the end of August) was the condo conversion refinance, which would complete the process of turning from TIC to Condo – something I’ve posted about before, and I swear I will make a definitive post on in 2013 (please, my meagre readership, hold me to this!).

Anyway, I posted back in September that my condo conversion was done with the city, but that there was still the refinance bit to go. Well it took until the week before last for that to finally finish. We closed the refi on 1/15/2013, and that puts an end to the TIC and brings into full on Condominium territory. Hurray!

posted by neil at 9:39 pm
under home ownership  

Saturday, January 19, 2013


I spent much of this week in Portland, OR for work. There is lots I could mention – mostly about food, but to keep this short I’ll just say that I had an artisanal Twinkie and it was DELICIOUS. I forgot to take a picture, sadly

posted by neil at 7:30 pm
under travel  

Monday, January 7, 2013

Weekend Trip: San Diego

I don’t expect to be doing much traveling this year – at least in the first 8 months – but we started the year out with a weekend trip down South to San Diego, to celebrate one of Mackenzie’s friend’s birthdays. I’d never been to San Diego before, so I was looking forward to whatever we did being new to me.

We arrived along with a few other friends around 6:30PM, and a couple of our friends from other cities who were driving down that day picked us up from the airport and brought us to Ponce’s Mexican Restaurant where we met out local friend and her coworker. There was a bit of a wait for a party of 10, but the margaritas made the wait easier, and the food was worth waiting for, and also pretty cheap. Actually – they split us into a table of 6 and a table of 4 and my table, the table of 6 ended up just paying the entire bill since we didn’t read it carefully and it was low enough that dividing by 6 seemed OK. I guess we forgot we were in San Diego!

The next day we headed out to the famous San Diego zoo. It was the last weekend of their “Jungle Bells” holiday thing, where there lights up around the zoo and it stayed open fairly late.

This was pretty cool later in the day, after it got dark, but from the get go, I was very happy. We started out with their bus tour, which is a good way to get a feel for the zoo, especially for a first timer (of course some in our party had been there before, but not I!). There were some good views of animals from the bus, like this lion:

After the bus tour we ate and, agains the wishes of many of the party, I got to walk around the reptile house. They were mostly sleeping, of course, but there were still some sights to see like this dwarf crocodile.

Even though we spent almost 6 hours at the zoo, I don’t think we saw more than 20% of it. Of course we spent some time eating and drinking, and with a group of 9 you might have to take things slow, but none of us were too bored, I don’t think, and everyone liked what we saw. As we stayed until round 6PM, we were able to enjoy the holiday lights as we were getting ready to leave the zoo.

After spending the day at the zoo we were all sort of tired, so we ordered in Pizza, drank a bunch of wine,

and watched Hedwig and the Angry Inch on DVD, which was a good lead on to our brunch plans the next morning…

We went to Lips, which is a drag show dinner club, that has a Gospel Brunch on Sunday. The show was pretty good and while the all you can drink Bloody Marys and Mimosas were nothing to write home about, there really was all you can drink, so except for our drivers, we were pretty sauced by the end of the show.

Almost all the non locals headed home after lunch, either via Air or Car, but Mackenzie and I along with a couple of more friends were on a late evening flight, so we hung around for a while, watching some TV and getting dinner from Smash Burger, which makes a tasty burger and some tasty fries.

Overall, it was a fun and quick trip, which makes me want to go back to San Diego to check out more sites and have more food!

posted by neil at 8:57 pm
under travel  

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

2012 Books

2012 was a banner year for book reading for me. By my count, I finished thirty-one books, although one of them, The Latke Who Couldn’t Stop Screaming is a children’s book, so maybe it doesn’t count. Either way I at least hit my goal from the previous year of thirty books. There is also one book that is unfinished, which means it will always remain in book limbo, stuck between 2012 and 2013, poor thing.

Moving on, almost all of the books I read where ebooks – although the final three completed books, the limbo book and one or two others were physical books. Six books, plus the limbo book were nonfiction, and of them two were memoirs – 52 Loaves: One Man’s Relentless Pursuit of Truth, Meaning, and a Perfect Crust which is a funny little book about obsessing over bread baking, and Blood, Bones & Butter which was definitely the more awkward of the two. One of the non-fiction book was actually an opinion piece, and therefore maybe shouldn’t count? Two books were re-reads – The Hobbit and Treasure Island.

It’s hard to choose favorites, but I think I will be boring and say that the best non-fiction book I read in 2012 was probably the aforementioned 52 Loaves, and the the best fiction book was The Art of Fielding, which might be the overall best book I read in 2012.

Also, I think I resolved to post at least once a week in 2013, so maybe I won’t forget to post for another fourish months?

posted by neil at 10:29 am
under books  

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