Tag Archives: apartment

Avengers: Age of Ultron + Other Stuff

A perk for working at PwC manifested this week when we got to attend a free screening for Avengers: Age of Ultron at the LA Live Regal Cinemas. Not too shabby.  I hadn’t been to that theater before and for this screening, we ended up in one of the ginormous theaters.  Anyway, we got there early and scored some great seats, and we were all set to also enjoy a brief intro to the movie by none other than Kevin Feige, the President of Marvel Studios, but alas, a man who is overseeing a studio that is likely going to break records this weekend, was running late.  So no Kevin Feige this time.  Ah well, it was time to watch the movie!

avengers_age_of_ultron_team

 

Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015); saw this on May 1, 2015 at the L.A. Live Regal Cinemas

Okay, so it helps if you’ve somewhat kept up with the other series of Marvel movies.  It wasn’t absolutely necessary though as the main thrust of the movie was all about figuring out what to do about Ultron, an AI that comes alive under Tony Stark’s and Bruce Banner’s tinkering.  Unfortunately, this Pinocchio ends up being quite a genocidal maniac, but what can you do?

I’ll say that I did really enjoy the movie, especially its third Act, but to me this movie felt a lot like setting things up for what will come next.  Yes, there was the main deal of fighting Ultron and defeating his seriously catastrophic schemes, but he seemed to be a means to an end in order to get the components of the Avengers ready for their next movies.  The first Avengers movie really didn’t feel like that to me and with that feeling, this movie seemed a little different.  Mind you, this was still wildly entertaining, and count me in, OBVIOUSLY, if Captain America is there.  I’m actually excited to see the storyline continue in the TV show, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.  That show has been really good in its second season and scratches the Marvel itch quite well.

For those of you who have seen the movie, I’ve included this link here for some post-viewing knowledge, as I certainly didn’t realize all of this stuff while watching as I’m not a Marvel comics reader:

aou_postmovieqs

Oh, and this Kotaku article was also entertaining concerning what Age of Ultron did much more effectively than the ugh Man of Steel Superman movie.

We actually just finished the third season of House of Cards on Netflix so it’s a good time to now watch Daredevil, which has been getting great reviews so far.  I don’t know yet how much it refers to the events from any of the movies, but it doesn’t really matter.  Entertaining TV is entertaining, am I right?

Movie Rankings, 2015 Summer Season Edition:

  1. Ex Machina
  2. Avengers: Age of Ultron

But let’s be honest, it’s not like #2 is the same as losing.  These were both ridiculously good.

Other things going on:

We made yet more progress on the apartment, this time getting our wine glass rack up on the wall.  It looks pretty great, to be honest, and helps free up some room in the cabinets.  Shelves are awesome.

May 2, 2015 – Bar Is Open!

02-May-2015 12:24, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 40
02-May-2015 12:24, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 32
02-May-2015 12:25, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 32
 
02-May-2015 12:25, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 32
02-May-2015 12:44, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 64
02-May-2015 12:45, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 40
 
02-May-2015 12:48, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 64
02-May-2015 12:48, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 64
02-May-2015 13:03, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 50
 
02-May-2015 13:03, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 40
 

For something funny, like really really funny, see the pic below which I saw on Twitter and killed me:

CD7v2WSWAAAW6pPThe Oxford comma needs its respect!!!  This reminds me of the book that was popular a while ago titled “Eats, Shoots and Leaves,” a book about the state of grammar and punctuation in the world.  Although a bloodthirsty and hungry panda really does sound awesome too.

Our “Ex Machina” & Pirch Day

It has been a few freakin’ MONTHS since we actually went out to a movie!   It’s been a long dry spell in terms of movies that we actually want to go out and see, so finally comes along a movie that was exactly right for us: Ex Machina.

UK-Quad_AW_28198-Ex_MachinaEx Machina (2015); saw this on April 26, 2015 at the Americana Pacific Theaters.

I guess it speaks of the time we live in that there are more and more interesting movies being made about what the future has in store for us.  Even though I wasn’t a big fan of either Her or Transcendence, I’m still happy that movies like that are being made as the technology is around now where imagination can run wild and it becomes a spectacle on our screen.  Ex Machina imagines that the Artificial Intelligence breakthrough is right around the corner and we get to see it in a personal way.

The story starts off with Caleb, an employee at a Google-like company, winning an opportunity to meet the CEO and stay with him in his remote compound for a week.  It’s certainly a dream opportunity but he soon finds out that the CEO actually wants Caleb to do something for him: perform a Turing Test on the CEO’s highly-secret AI robot.  The Turing Test tests whether a human can determine if he or she is talking to a computer or a human – if unable to tell, the Turing Test is passed.  We’re way beyond that basic determination though in this situation, as Caleb is immediately made aware that Ava is a robot.  But he begins to start connecting with Ava, which of course leads to complications.

A review I read for Ex Machina pointed out that frequently this movie’s twists are not easy to predict and frequently when you think you’ve figured it out, the movie changes course.  That’s very true and it makes the movie extremely entertaining.  I won’t spoil anything here except to say that the relationship between Caleb and Ava was fascinating and the special effects that bring this movie to life are amazing.  Oscar Isaac (soon to be seen in the new Star Wars!) is also fantastic as the CEO, Nathan.  Long story short:  check this movie out!

Update:  There’s a dance scene that occurs halfway through the movie that completely comes out of nowhere and is AWESOME.

Update 2:  Looks like there’s a GIF of it and it is now on this site because it must be:ex-machina-2

 

and maybe UPDATE 3 which is an actual clip from the movie of this scene?  Oh yes….

 

visual-identity_DkfP_smPirch looks a lot like something out of Ex Machina but this is actually a place you can go to in order to see and touch the highest of high-end appliances for your home.  It’s freakin’ amazing.  You’ll curse your station in life when you realize that there are no prices listed anywhere.  As the old adage says, “if you have to ask, you can’t afford it.”  With that in mind, it was still a lot of fun to look at these various kitchen and bathroom fixtures and dream.

Enough of that!  Let’s look at pictures!

April 24, 2015 – The LA River From the Metrolink

The ride home on Friday I ended up having a seat on the second level of the train.  That ended up being a good vantage point to see into the LA River – so pictures are what I took!

24-Apr-2015 17:15, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 32
24-Apr-2015 17:15, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 32
24-Apr-2015 17:15, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.006 sec, ISO 32
 
24-Apr-2015 17:15, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.004 sec, ISO 32
24-Apr-2015 17:15, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 32
24-Apr-2015 17:15, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 64
 
24-Apr-2015 17:15, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.005 sec, ISO 32
24-Apr-2015 17:15, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.005 sec, ISO 32
24-Apr-2015 17:15, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.007 sec, ISO 32
 
24-Apr-2015 17:16, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.007 sec, ISO 32
24-Apr-2015 17:16, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.007 sec, ISO 32
24-Apr-2015 17:16, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.005 sec, ISO 32
 

April 25 & 26, 2015 – More Things We Did at the Apt

We had some more things to do.  One of those was getting those orange IKEA chairs for our breakfast nook – they’d been sold out the last few times we went and finally they were back in stock.  Score!  We also had the need for a console table in the entry way, and after various ideas, we picked one on Wayfair.com that fit the bill.  Larry put that together yesterday while I watched movies on HBO.

Today, we put up some pictures. It’s amazing how much that small detail adds to the apartment.  Feels a lot more like home.

25-Apr-2015 13:49, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 50
25-Apr-2015 13:49, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 40
25-Apr-2015 20:28, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 320
 
25-Apr-2015 21:30, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.042 sec, ISO 250
26-Apr-2015 18:09, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 160
26-Apr-2015 18:09, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 160
 
26-Apr-2015 18:15, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 100
26-Apr-2015 18:17, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 100
 

As April Chugs Along

I’ve not had much to write about it seems – the weekends are getting a bit better in that we’re not having to spend all day both days doing stuff around the house.  This last weekend was actually very nice in that regard – it was the mounting of the TV and not much else.  We did get our record player working again, as evidenced by the featured photo!

Work has been also very good, but I’ve still got some nervousness about feeling like I am contributing as much as I can.  I definitely am not a fan of the initial stages of a job when there’s a lot of newness and you’re still regarded as someone who has limited skills.  But I plug along and I’m working with Osman long-distance on stuff and it’s been fun and a bit of learning/experience.  I’m getting to be quite comfortable with Spotfire!  Next up, Tableau.

Anyway, here are some pics because I do love pics:

So here’s my new bag – schnazzy, yes?

06-Apr-2015 19:45, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 400
 

Here’s the tallest building on the west coast…for now!  The US Bank building is always cool to see:

20-Apr-2015 12:36, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
 

And then yesterday for lunch, we took the Metro over to Union Station and walked to the best French Dip in town at Philippe’s!

22-Apr-2015 12:33, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 50
 

Settled In, It Seems

We’ve finally made it – all the big boxes are unpacked and disposed of.  It’s a thrilling sensation to be done and to be kind of almost all moved in at our new and smaller apartment.  All the work of getting shelving installed has been so satisfying too, as items are finding their real home and our home becomes livable too for us, as that is actually a thing we’ve been making ourselves deal with.  It’s interesting how much you choose to deal with when it’s something you can’t ignore, like boxes all stacked in your dining room area or piles of clothes and linens in your bedroom or an office overrun with crap…you make it all work regardless and get used to it.  But when you get things organized and reclaim that space, it is like, woah, that’s nice.

Yesterday was a productive day too, but I think I felt a little emotional about it as well.  There was the realization I had that Phase 1 of Moving is done and now it’s time to get settled in and make the place ours, and then start actually enjoying the apartment and amenities.  But then it was also realizing that we’re not done yet – just that the boxes are gone.  I actually just got my TV mount for the wall today, we have more shelving coming in for the wine glasses and bar area, and then there will be picture hangings and such.  It’s fun and great to have all this happen, but soooo exhausting.

In random tangents, both Larry & I are so glad to have some of our favorite Spring TV back:  Mad Men and Game of Thrones.  Mad Men‘s final season is airing and it’s been good but also sad because this is the LAST SEASON.  NOOOOO……!!!  It’s not clear where it’s headed, but one thing that does seem kind of apparent is that Don Draper is and will continue to be the same broken and flawed man he was from Season 1.  Game of Thrones is exciting this year as we’re finally at that expected divide when the TV show caught up to the books…and now the show is able to write its own interpretation of what happens next.  George R. R. Martin has given the showrunners an outline of what he has intended the overall story to encompass for the ending, but the details are likely changing regardless.  There are promises that characters will die even book readers will find surprising.   So, those shows are ongoing while Larry & I also are enjoying the third season of House of Cards on Netflix, although that has been slow-going for a few reasons, including my initial PwC travels and then moving.  But we didn’t let all that stop us from binge-watching Netflix’s other new series, The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, which is fucking awesome and funny as hell.

Alright, this was just a word-vomit post for today, but I need to keep trying to get back in the swing of posting and so here we are.  I have some more pics to share too, including a bigger batch from yesterday when Mom and Helen came over to visit.

April 9, 2015 – PwC All Hands in Santa Monica!

Last week there was an All Hands meeting for the group here in SoCal and it was held out on the Westside, kinda near my old stomping grounds.  The traffic was ridiculous, as expected, but not nearly as bad as it could have been.  Even though it felt like a longer ride, it was only an hour or so back to my home in Glendale…although that was with me leaving at 7pm.  I had looked earlier at 5pm and the trip was easily 1.5 hours.  Eff that.  I did enjoy being back on the beach though, but that’s just not enough for me to say I miss the Santa Monica area, as I don’t.

09-Apr-2015 17:34, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
09-Apr-2015 18:13, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, ISO 32
09-Apr-2015 18:13, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
 
09-Apr-2015 18:13, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
09-Apr-2015 18:14, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, ISO 32
 

April 11, 2015 – Final Stretch….

I have to say this is kind of misleading titling, as while it was a final stretch of boxes and installations, like I rambled about above, there’s still a lot of work.  But at least we’ve gotten so much crap off the floors!

More boxes on their way out
More boxes on their way out11-Apr-2015 12:40, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 250
Not just a pic of a bathroom, but a bathroom without boxes!
Not just a pic of a bathroom, but a bathroom without boxes!11-Apr-2015 12:40, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.042 sec, ISO 250
Goodwill stuff
Goodwill stuff11-Apr-2015 12:40, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 200
 
11-Apr-2015 19:57, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 320
11-Apr-2015 20:18, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 400
 

April 12, 2015 – Mom and Helen, Some Grilling, and More Home Improvement!

Helen came up to visit mom so they came over to see how we were doing in the getting settled effort.  Mom wasn’t impressed but I reminded her, gently, that it actually was MUCH better than when she saw it and it was a goddamn warzone.  We took them on a tour of the amenities as we hadn’t shown my mom that her last time here as there was work to be done then!  These pics are from the roof deck of the building we live in, not of our own private area.  Our grilling adventures for dinner later that evening were a bit educational – the grills provided around the complex are very nice, but they’re huge.  So we’ve realized that a large grill takes much more to heat up.  The El Pollo Loco chicken recipe requires indirect heat, so to do that in a big grill, you need to use more burners.  Lesson learned, hopefully.

12-Apr-2015 10:52, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 125
12-Apr-2015 10:52, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 100
12-Apr-2015 10:53, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.059 sec, ISO 250
 
12-Apr-2015 11:08, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 160
12-Apr-2015 11:08, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 200
12-Apr-2015 11:16, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 160
 
12-Apr-2015 12:31, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
12-Apr-2015 12:31, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, ISO 32
12-Apr-2015 12:31, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
 
12-Apr-2015 12:31, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, ISO 32
12-Apr-2015 12:31, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, ISO 32
12-Apr-2015 12:32, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, ISO 32
 
12-Apr-2015 12:32, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, ISO 32
12-Apr-2015 12:32, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
12-Apr-2015 12:32, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
 

Who Me, Stressed?

This week was my first one in which I’d spend the entire week at work without any bit of training, even a 1-day jaunt to Atlanta!  So the beginning of the week was me first having a bit of a stress-out realizing that I have to start making things happen!  Guess what?  Things started happening and I’ve been fairly busy this week – it’s a great feeling.  I don’t feel totally useless.   I love it.

Also?  I was chatting with one of my fellow managers at work and she told me about taking the Metrolink into DTLA, and she pointed out that there’s a Glendale station I could be using.  You know what?  I knew that – but I totally didn’t associate it as an option for me to go to work.  But guess what?  It totally DOES work.  I started researching that option and I found out that a Metrolink pass is also a Metro Rail pass, so I can ride the LA subways, light rails and buses.  HELLS yeah!  Back to Riding the Rails for me!  Although what my route will be is driving to the Glendale Metrolink station, taking the Metrolink train nonstop into Union Station (Glendale is the next stop from Union Station), then transfer to the Red Line and go to 7th/Metro Center and then walk a block.  It may end up taking slightly longer in the morning BUT in the afternoons it will be completely worth avoiding the nightmarish 110 North traffic.  Also also!  PwC works with LA Rideshare and I’ll get reimbursed almost the entire cost of a monthly pass!  Tomorrow morning will be my first trial run to see how it all works out.  I plan on making it work regardless but I figured even before moving that it would be fun to use the rails and avoid Thursday insanity on the freeways.

In the map below, you can see the gold/green line that goes through Glendale on its way to DTLA.  Yay!

metrolinkoptionOh, and then of course, the other source of stress this week!  We’re moving!  This weekend!  I may need to take some mind-altering substances to remain calm – JUST KIDDING.  I can’t wait to be done.  We ended up deciding to get a storage unit anyway, even with the massive amount of junk disposal we’ve done.  It has to be done.  It’s nice to know we have that in our back pocket.

Larry went by the place this afternoon and they finished painting the two accent walls we wanted done.   This timeline is really working out well!  Here are some pics he took:

25-Mar-2015 11:10, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 32
25-Mar-2015 11:10, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.025 sec, ISO 32
 

Completely random pic time – my walk in the mornings has included being able to see the Wilshire Grand building as it gets built.  I took a picture of it three weeks ago and then one on Monday.  It’s already grown 2 stories!  At least its inner superstructure.  This building will be the tallest building on the west coast when it’s done and it will look pretty stunning when complete in a few years:

wilshiregrandThe poor PwC building will look so small next to it!  Anyway, here’s what the Wilshire Grand looks like now, as well as three weeks ago.  You can see they’ve conveniently numbered the floors as they build them:

12-Mar-2015 08:59, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, ISO 32
24-Mar-2015 08:46, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
 

We’ve finally been able to start watching Netflix’ newer shows!  House of Cards is obviously good and we’re 2 episodes in, but the show I think both Larry & I are REALLY in love with is Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.  It’s amazing and sooo funny.  That’s not too surprising since it comes from Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, the people directly responsible for 30 Rock.  Ellie Kemper is awesome and the return of Jane Krakowski to my television is most welcome.  Carol Kane is also in this and that just makes this show magic.  Plus the theme song is just hilarious and seems directly reminiscent of the following: