All posts by Hobie

Countertops + More

It’s mid October so it’s a perfect time to post an entry here.   I’m mostly focused on pictures right now, but in short, 2018 continues to be a challenging year and some days are much harder than others.  Work insists on being stressful and it is sometimes difficult to deal with that on top of all the other stuff.  Larry’s chemotherapy is apparently doing its job, which is fantastic, but the side effects continue to build up and progressively get worse.  He’s able to find ways to deal and mitigate, but it sucks nonetheless.  Mom can’t feel her hands and it doesn’t look to be carpal tunnel, so here’s hoping that upcoming appointments with a nerve doctor provide insight on what is happening.   So all around, good times, right?  That’s the update then on what’s been going on, so now I’ll just post some pics.

Sunday, Oct 21: Our Countertops at the Glen LA

Yesterday, we celebrated Mom’s 70th.  Planning for this evolved as Mom’s not been feeling that great so we kept this very simple.  Larry and I made a cake, and then we met up with Stacie at Mom’s to get lunch and celebrate.  Wish we could have done more but the plan is to eventually have a do-over when she’s feeling better.

Sat, Oct 20: Mom’s 70th

And in completely unimportant news, I rebuilt my PC.  I do this every now and then because one simply can’t have an old computer.   Well, I’ve actually held off on rebuilding the computer’s motherboard and processor for 5 years!   I’ve replaced the graphics card a few times, got a solid state drive or two, and upgraded the power source in that time, but hadn’t really felt the need to update the main processor.   But the latest round of computer games were starting to tell me that if I wanted the premiere experience, I’d need to do something about it.  So I did.  And just in time, as Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, which just came out, is a beast and I can run it without a problem and it looks glorious.  It’s a fantastic game too.  My components this time around included:

  • Intel i7-8700 3.7Ghz processor
  • ASUS Prime Z370-A Motherboard
  • 16 GB of DDR4 3000 RAM
  • be quiet! Dark Rock processor cooler fan
  • GeForce GTX 1070 Ti video card (which I had got a month or two ago)

Behold, my new PC as built on a Friday, Oct 5 night:

Cabinets & Sound of Music for a Great Weekend

We just got back from visiting our in-progress home.   Yes, we’d been there just 2 weeks ago and saw that there was some major progress made as drywall had been put up!

Two Weeks of Travel & Stress, But We Made It

In two weeks time though, a lot has changed!     First thing we noticed once we were there was that the drywall had been pretty much sealed up.   If you look at the pictures from the post above, the drywall was up but it didn’t look finished yet.   It looks finished now.   What got us over here today though was that we had confirmation that all the cabinetry was up!!!  And boy oh boy, finished walls and cabinetry up in all the rooms makes this place look that much more finished.  It’s fucking fantastic.  Look for yourself!

Cabinets & Finished Drywall – Sept 23, 2018

You’ll see in those last few pictures that we ended up going for a long walk.   Larry’s commute will be markedly improved once we move, as he’s no longer going to have to cross the 101/170 interchange or the 5/134 interchange – both of which are terrible and soul-killing.  Mine though?  It’s going to take some figuring out.   For going into DTLA, I do have plenty of options but none of them are like, super easy.  There’s an Orange Line stop about a mile south of the house, so Larry suggested we walk it to see how it goes.   The day was right for it, so off we went.  Saw the pretty Valley Glen Community Park before getting to the Orange Line stop.   Definitely a do-able walk, but I’m thinking some kind of bike or scooter would make this easier.  Anyway, on the walk back to the house, we walked up Coldwater Canyon and saw the Great Wall mural of California History.  It’s pretty cool.   Walking through the neighborhood was a nice way to get a better feeling for the area, and I think we’re gonna like it here.

YESTERDAY was the Sound of Music Sing-a-Long at the Hollywood Bowl, and it was wonderful.  I don’t have to explain it again, do I?  It’s what we do every year and we’ll continue to do as long as they keep having it.  Based on yet another sold out crowd, I doubt it’s going away any time soon.  Melissa Peterman was the host (for her 14th time in a row!) and is just fabulous and glorious and so quick on her feet.  Love her.   There was a marriage proposal this year, which was new!  Anyway, The Sound of Music is just as glorious as it ever was, and I love it so.

Sound of Music Sing-a-Long, Sep 22, 2018

Larry Got Some Star Trek:TNG Love

I neglected to add something fairly awesome from this past weekend in my previous post:  Larry’s childhood friend Greg stopped by to visit and cheer Larry up.  Greg’s been great about checking in while Larry goes through chemo, but we had no idea what to expect when he asked if he could come over on Saturday!  Greg not only brought his son Asher, but he also brought a SIGNED STAR TREK:TNG BOOK – signed by SIR PATRICK STEWART HIMSELF!!!   It’s a slightly involved story, but Greg is in the Hollywood producing world and had the ability to meet Patrick Stewart this past Friday and provide what is possibly the world’s most perfect gift for Larry!

The inscription reads:

Hi, Larry, I am so happy to sign this for you.  I hope you are well soon and I send you all my best wishes.  Patrick Stewart

HOLY SHIT.  I got tears in my eyes when I saw this, as did Larry.  It is a fantastic thing to know that one of his idols was thinking of him just the day before.

We started Round 5 of chemo today.  I think Jean-Luc Picard’s encouragement will go a long way towards this being a good 2 weeks!

Two Weeks of Travel & Stress, But We Made It

I won’t lie – the last two weeks have been hard.  I’ve been having to travel for work and while of course when one hears where I went, they probably think I’m a little bitch because oh boo hoo, I had to go to great places.   But the fact that I had to leave Larry (even though he had amazing support from friends and family while I was out) was ridiculously hard to deal with.  Then the travel was all about work, but when you’re traveling for work, it’s very difficult to not fall behind on the regular work stuff you’re also responsible for doing.  So yeah, it has been a relief to be at this point and know that I am back to a regular kind of schedule.

It wouldn’t be me though if I hadn’t taken pictures while out and about!  So let’s start from long ago and work our way back to drywall.  It’ll make sense once you see the pictures.

Larry started his 4th round of chemo back on Monday, August 27th.  It was another round of the FolFoxIri + Avastin, which is the max approach we can take at this point.   I then was leaving to go to Mexico City on Tuesday.  EEK.  Larry wasn’t on his own though, as my mom was able to help take him on Wednesday for unplugging the chemo port, and Nicki also came by on Tuesday night to keep him company.  It was a relief to know he was in good hands.

I went to Mexico City to help with training up PwC Mexico folks on our code review template and to also, and more specifically why I was there, to give an introductory crash course on COBOL.  Yep, what was my life for 16 months in 2016 and 2017 is now part of what I’m known for here at PwC.  Good times!  🙂  I was slightly nervous about the whole ‘going to Mexico’ thing, but I managed.  Uber is prevalent in Mexico City just like nearly everywhere else in the world; my experiences from Puerto Rico also had me prepared for what to expect, as just like there, there’s plenty of the regular, non-touristy areas where people live as well as the more haute-touty places.   While during the day of Tuesday and Wednesday were spent at PwC Mexico, the evenings were good for enjoying the area.  My coworker who was there with me is Mexican and knew the area, so we had good ideas for where to go.  The first night, we went to a good restaurant right nearby, but on the second/last night, we got to go into historical Mexico City’s Zocalo, the city center.   It’s where you see James Bond in the beginning of Spectre – and it’s pretty damn great.

Mexico City, Aug 28-30, 2018

I was very very happy to get home though – which was Thursday night.    And god bless Global Entry – I was able to get right through customs without much fuss at all.  But leaving LAX on a Thursday evening is awful any time of the year, but worse before a holiday weekend.  I got home finally but I was exhausted.   Obviously Larry wasn’t feeling all that great himself, and in this case, one of the side effects of his chemo was causing him a lot of discomfort.  We had been trying to rig some solutions using OTC medicines but it really wasn’t doing much to help, regrettably.  Spoiler alert:  Larry was able to call the wonderful GI doctor (Dr Fisher) and get prescribed something that has drastically reduced his discomfort.  It’s not entirely gone, but to say that it’s so much better for Larry is entirely accurate.

Anyway, let’s talk Labor Day weekend.  We had originally been going to go to the Hollywood Bowl to see John Williams’ concert, along with my mom.  But Larry’s discomfort basically meant we weren’t going to be leaving home this weekend for that kind of excursion.  It sucked, but Nicki and Rekha reached out to see if we wanted some company so they came over and brought delicious food from All’Acqua (which is a great Italian place in Atwater Village).  That evening, in addition to food, I got them to play Jenga with me, so yay!

Nicki & Rekha Cheer Us Up w/ Jenga, Sat, Sep 1, 2018

On Sunday, we again mostly just hung out at home and watched The Crown and relaxed.  It was nice.

Then on Monday (Labor Day), Nicki & Rekha came back over to enjoy our apartment’s pool complex, which is a very nice thing to have.  We not only enjoyed the pool, but managed to snag one of the cabanas.  It was a nice way to spend the day.

Labor Day Cabana Fun, Mon, Sep 3, 2018

Jetting off yet again on Tuesday, I went to Orlando for PwC’s Risk Assurance leadership conference.  This was a trip that had been scheduled for quite a while, and at one point (pre-diagnosis), I think it was something Larry & I had considered maybe him going on too so we could spend some time at Disney World.  That didn’t happen obviously.  It was a good conference though and I got to spend some time with current friends and connect with new people too.  Always about the networking in this company.  Like I said before, Larry ended up getting some medicine to help with his side effects while I was gone this time, but when I left it was definitely not a resolved issue.  Happily, by Tuesday evening, he was feeling better.  So yay for victories where we can take them.

So while I was in Orlando, we really only got one evening of pretty awesome fun – we were going to get a dinner in EPCOT center and then time to ourselves in the park!  Not a lot of time (<2 hours, actually) but still, this was my first time ever at a Florida Disney park so I was gonna take advantage of it.   Larry gave me the heads up on what rides were worth it in EPCOT so I had my marching orders.  A few others of my friends were on board for this too, so off we went!  Basically from our event space by the UK area of EPCOT, we headed straight to Spaceship Earth, which is within the famous geodesic sphere.   It’s a slow ride that drives you through the world of communication and how it’s evolved over 30k years.  It’s pretty great, to be honest.   It’s also cool to be inside the sphere!   After that, it was over to Test Track, and let’s just say that this ride is the shit.  It’s clearly a forerunner to Radiator Springs Racers in California Adventure, and possibly even more fun?  Finally, we ramped up the intensity for the last ride, Mission: Space, and geeeez, it’s a rough one.  It’s a G-Force simulator and fucking wrecks you.   It’s still a fun experience, but next time, I’ll take the less intense alternatives, which do exist!

PwC & Epcot Center, Wed, Sep 5, 2018

Again, it was wonderful to be back home after this trip, especially knowing it was the last one for hopefully a while.

This weekend has been good – our house has drywall up!!  It’s actually been a few weeks since we heard that process started, so waiting a few weeks means it’s all up now.  It’s very exciting – within the next few weeks, cabinetry will be going in.  Yay!

Drywall!  Sat, Sep 8, 2018

A Truly WTF of a Week

BB20 – Eps 24-26 – Aug 19, 22, & 23, 2018

Honestly, I called it the moment Fessy won HoH.  Once he won, I joked that he’s going to evict Scottie.   Larry can vouch for me saying this.  I was JOKING though.  But alas, Fessy showed that you really can be not cut out for this game.  As Tyler mocked in the Diary Room, “Welcome to Big Brother, Fessy.  Glad you finally wanted to start playing the game!”

So yeah, Fessy won HoH handily and Level 6 was rightfully preparing to lose yet another member.   But yeah, Level 6 + JC were on it and weren’t going down without a fight.  JC wisely reasoned that because Fessy is a moron, he can influence him to turn on one of his own!  And yep, he got exactly that.   JC warned Fessy that Scottie had a crush on Haleigh and was playing an emotional game, knowing full well that Fessy has that ‘my girl’ mindset in full effect and could be so easily manipulated to react out of jealousy.  Fessy apparently feels that Swaggy’s eviction vote was still enough of a reason to distrust Scottie, although maybe focusing on the here and now might have been a better strategy?  But that’s just me.

Fessy nominated Scottie & Brett, then he believed Brett was the lone vote for Rockstar, and why am I even here still?  Mad props to Level 6 for still having the wool pulled over everyone else’s eyes, as it really is their game to lose at this point!

The Underdog narrative is always an appealing one to root for and enjoy, but in this case, the underdogs are morons.  They deserve to be evicted.  I feel kinda bad for Haleigh for being tied to this ship, but them’s the breaks.  Poor Scottie has no idea what was going on and even in the FB aftershow, isn’t quite sure what caused Fessy to do this.  He reasoned that Fessy is either a complete moron or a strategic genius…and I guess they’ll all learn the truth in a few weeks.  SO AGGRAVATING.

The Veto was another thing where Scottie almost saved himself, but Brett got the lucky win having hid his Veto token the best in the destroyed BB house, and then Sam tried to convince Fessy to nominate Haleigh instead as that would be the least controversial move for him to make and sure, why not?

He apparently can tell when people are crazy?

The Zingbot dropped in and that was epic – Zingbot called Fessy a moron to his face and I don’t think Fessy has any idea why.

Zingbot also called Sam crazy to her face and everyone ran and hid.  I tell ya, the BB house does a number on people. Continue reading A Truly WTF of a Week