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June 2003

Was haben Sie heute vor?

June 29, 2003: The headline is to indicate that I'm back on my become-fluent-in-German kick. I know I can be if I really put my mind to it, but once it starts to get difficult (some of the German words can get quite long), that's when I have to force myself to continue. I also want to pick up my violin again, but I'll wait till I get my Captain-raise so I can easily afford lessons. One day I aspire to speak only German and play a violin in some German park. I'll never be heard from again! Bwahahahaha! My plan is coming together quite nicely...
Other news: This weekend was hella boring. I didn't do anything exciting or noteworthy and hell, I didn't even update my website. I was like in a state of complete 'eh'. On Friday night, I had a good night. I went and saw 'Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle' which was a lot of fun. A very entertaining movie! I went with DC & Berta to see that, and afterwards we feasted on In-N-Out burgers (yummmmmmm) and Coldstone Creamery ice cream. Yes, I'll have to keep working out for like the next month to burn that all away, but it was soooooooooo worth it. We then went on a drive up the strip on Friday night, and it really is amazing to see that place all lit up.
So the weather has sucked lately - it was today something around 108 degrees today. I tried not to go outside. I hope it cools down for July 4. I am not sure what I'm doing yet, but if it's not cooler by then, it'll definitely be something indoors.
What's New? I got a copy of Jason's pictures he took both at this most recent visit to Las Vegas in May, as well as pictures from when I hung out with them on this past New Year's. Good pictures, but you have to see them for yourself to really see his demented mind at work. Click here for the pictures from the May Las Vegas visit.

Is it July yet?

June 26, 2003: I guess not. <sigh> But in other good news, people are signing my guest book. Oh how I love validation! So keep doing it and I'll remain your friend. I got in a website frenzy this evening, that's why so many of my old website photo pages are now up. You can easily find them at this link. And can I say again that July looks to be like a fun month? My promotion party, going to LA for Mila's birthday, and overall just being July! Yay!
What's New? I went buckwild and put up a whole bunch of my old picture pages. Next in my plan is to resurrect my rollercoaster journal pages from Robbie & My Ultimate Rollercoaster Trip of June 2001. Oh yeah.

So done with Harry Potter 5

June 25, 2003: I figured I had better let you know that I finished the book (back on Sunday - it only took me two days to finish that book, yet that highlights the fact I have no social life. so sad, so sad). It was good, not outstanding, but still entertaining. I guess it came down to the fact that not much really happened. Oh well. Anyways, it's been busy at work, which is good, I'm excited about July, and I am not sleepy yet so I decided to bring a set of photos that only ever saw my photo album on yahoo.com. So check that out if you get a chance. And I honestly can't think of anything else to say, right now, as I guess I just did get sleepy. Sign my guestbook!
What's New? The hilarious pictures of my last night in San Antonio from 2001, right before I went to the Azores. Enjoy.

Halfway through Harry Potter 5

June 22, 2003: I think this book is good, but I'm waiting for it to kick into high gear. There's a whole lot of setup and Harry Potter-anger, but not much indication of where the book is going. <SPOILERISH comments ahead - use mouse to highlight the hidden text to see it>Why is Dumbledore acting the way he is? When will Professer Umbridge go AWAY? When is Harry going to take a chill pill? Is Harry under Voldemort's Imperius Curse (that's the point I'm at - that's at least what the end of Chap 22 seems to be implying!) </END SPOILERS> You know what's sad though? I started reading this around 5PM yesterday (after finishing tinkering with the guestbook thing), and didn't put it down at all except to walk around because my legs hurt from sitting. My eyes finally started to get blurry and I was sleepy. So I guess the book is still addictive.
About the guestbook - it's awesome that Roni, Alan & Robbie have already signed it! Until I develop the next iteration of features for my website, I'll be adding my comments to the entries in the guestbook. Stay tuned for the next feature though, hopefully it'll be pretty cool and will be oh-so-interactive. You'll NEVER want to leave hobiebarnes.com! :-)
What's New? I updated the corkboard a little (notice the time of the party and the red post-it).

I have in my possession the fifth Harry Potter book.

June 21, 2003: Not only that, but I added a huge new part to this website, which is the guestbook. Sign it or else. Nah, just kidding. This week was pretty busy - and it was great to have SSgt Robinson back in the office so that we could get lots of work done. Yeah, right. In other news, I got an A in my Programming class, which means that so far, I have a 4.0 GPA. Oh yeah. Other happy news: Alan & Maria (who I visited in DC last week) had their baby boy Logan last Friday! They sent some pictures that I may post one or two of. You can tell they are very proud parents. Very cool! Well, enough on the ramble track. I want to start reading Harry Potter, and it took me a few hours just to get this guestbook to work. Enough already!
What's New? The guestbook! Michancy, you had better utilize this now. This was all because of you! I plan to also get the other pictures from the old website up soon.

Just finished rereading Harry Potter 4.

June 17, 2003: I had to reread it because it has been over 2 years since I read it the first time and the newest and FIFTH book in the series is finally coming out - almost 3 whole years since 4. The newest, coming out Saturday, is called Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, and I imagine I won't be putting it down until it's over and read. After finishing up HP4: The Goblet of Fire, I remembered just how great these books are. The movies are outstanding, but the source material in these books is incredible. The author, J.K. Rowling does such an amazing job of bringing to life such fantastic characters, especially Dumbledore and Harry. To anyone who hasn't read these assuming that they are kids books, I humbly beg to differ. I was like you initially, especially when I worked at Bookstar and would get these kooks who would keep asking me when the fourth book was coming out. I thought they were just freaks but when I finally decided to pick up the first one, I was hooked! Literally. When I finished the first, I ran out and bought the second, and so on. Enough with the rant, right? But you know what I'll be reading on Saturday, as Amazon.com has said they'll be sending out all preorder copies to customers so that it will arrive on Saturday. Sweeet.
What's New? I scrounged the archives of my old website and put up some pictures from it. It's not completely back up, but I've commented which old photo collections are up and running, and they include 690th pictures and my Aunt Helen's Vegas Wedding back in 2001.

July will really kick ass.

June 14, 2003: Seriously, it will. But let's just let the month speak for itself. So just to not leave you hanging, my flight was in danger of being cancelled the other night, due to the tower not letting planes land, and our plane was up there circling around waiting to land. It could have been ugly. But the weather cleared enough, and I got to go home. And even more surprisingly, I was polite to people around me. I actually was chatting with this one old guy while waiting to get on the plane. And then on the plane itself, I actually talked to the lady next to me for most of the flight. I surprise myself sometimes when I become socialHobie. Crazy.

The day back at work was super busy, and it earned the Friday the 13th moniker. Some things went wrong that really pissed me off, but what can you do? Oh well. It was good to see all the coworkers again and stuff. And now it's Saturday, and I just finished up my CSS 561 Programming Concepts class. I expect an A or an A-. I shall be angry if I do not get either of those grades. Very very angry.

Do you know how nice it was to just do so little today? No preparing to go fly somewhere, no need to really be anywhere. Ah. Sigh. So nice. And guess what, I've actually lost some more weight. I'm on my way to 165, let me tell you! I'm at 172 now. That's 10 pounds less than when I first started tracking back in February. So slowly but surely, it's going away. Yay.
What's New? Actually, quite a lot. I've put up a whole new type of page for your viewing enjoyment. It's where the stuff goes that I really can't figure out where else to put it. It's called The Corkboard and you had better love it to death. I've also put up my pictures from DC, including some of a very pregnant Maria. She should probably have given birth by now, but I haven't heard anything yet. Also I've got some more DVDs! Woo hoo!

So this guy walked into an airport lounge...

June 12, 2003: ....and is sitting here watching a bunch of people anxiously wanting to depart on their LaGuardia flight that has been delayed repeatedly by lots of bad weather. It sure is sad for them, isn't it? HA! But my flight better not get delayed, let me tell you. The last class session was pretty interesting today, and I can honestly say I've learned a helluva lot about information security. Today we had to design a PL4 MAN that had multiple levels of security at 4 of the MAN nodes. Raise your hand if you had absolutely no idea what I just said. If so, that's wonderful and will ensure I make lots of money and you won't. Heh heh. But back to my story for the day. After class was finished at 3PM, I knew I had to kill some time before <WAIT! the gate just changed for LaGuardia, there's mass chaos as people run to the other gate.....oh the luxury of sitting and watching it all. Thank God I don't have to be in that mess. BACK TO MY OTHER STORY> I headed to the airport, as I'll be damned if I sit around an airport for 4-6 hours. P'shaw. So I walked (I seem to do a lot of that when I leave home) to the Potomac Yards shopping center just down the Jefferson Davis Hwy from my hotel. There is a movie theater there and I wanted to rewatch Matrix Reloaded, so I got down there around 3:30. The next showing wasn't until 4:05, so I just decided to go to that one. Halfway through the film, all the projectors in the theater complex died due to rain (uh oh, this isn't going to be good), and then it restarted and I watched the movie till the happy part where Neo revives Trinity. Yay! At that point I had to walk my chubby ass back to the hotel so I could catch a shuttle to the airport. Another happy circumstance allowed me to not get rained on, as the storm just stopped! Whew. I got back at around 6:50ish, hopped the shuttle, and am sitting here now, gimpy from all the walking in these shoes that are SO not made for lots of walking. I'm checked in and ready to go now, and am really really hoping I don't get delayed. I have to go to work tomorrow, yes it sucks. So we'll see what's going to happen next. But as the long as the guy next to me doesn't start offering me cookies again, I think i'll be okay. How weird is that?

It was the strangest of things...

June 11, 2003: So here's the latest on what's been going on before I head into my main story. The class has been plowing along, and it's been fun. I've met some interesting people and I've learned quite a lot. But do you care about that? Of course not! So cool stuff: I got to see my BCOT buddies Alan & Maria yesterday evening! I had sent them an email before I left for DC and we ended up deciding to get together last night. Alan picked me up at the hotel after school, then drove us through crazy rush hour traffic back to their home in Virginia. And then I saw Maria, and boy is she pregnant! She's in fact due to give birth......Thursday!!!! So she's quite ready to give birth. We ate dinner at their house and it was just awesome to hang out with them again. It looks like Alan's got quite the future ahead of him and hopefully they can attain all they want to. They deserve to!

But on to the freaky but oh-so-cool story. After class today, I planned to just go to the movies and grab a bite to eat. I had asked around as to where a theater was and found out that there was one up at Pentagon City and one down in Eisenhower (these are actually just the Metro stops - I have no idea really where they are). Pentagon City was closer, and there is a mall there, so I went there. I got to the mall, and surrounded by a ton of obnoxious teenagers, I searched for the movie theater. hmmmm... can't find it. I go up and down the escalator to the second floor TWICE and finally ask someone where the hell the theater is. And apparently it's GONE! Not enough business. So....it's off to the Eisenhower one. I meander back down to the Metro station and go to sit down and wait for the next yellow train. As I'm sitting at the station, this guy in Air Force blues sits down next to me and as I look at him, it dawns on me, holy crap this is Loren! Loren, the Loren who I'd forgotten was stationed out here now and was one of my best friends out in San Antonio right before I left to Lajes in 2001. I caught up with him briefly this last visit I made to San Antonio in December, but we hadn't talked since then. So to all of a sudden just see him there at a Metro station I never go to because the movie theatre wasn't there and I did two laps of the mall......just plain weird. To top it off, he ends up living right next to the movie theater I was going to. So we got there, he changed, we hung out at Ruby Tuesday's by the theater and had some dinner, and then went to Finding Nemo. But it didn't matter, cause honestly it was still astronomical odds that my meandering pattern of events met me up with Loren again. Crazy world. So now you know my story. And Finding Nemo was cool! Getting back to the hotel was interesting, as when we went in to the theater, it was sunny and humid, and upon leaving it was thunderstormy and dark! I was thinking I was screwed at the other end of the Metro, as it's quite a walk from Crystal City station to the hotel. But I discovered that you can walk halfway across town underground through the Crystal City mall. Sweet! And now I'm 24 hours away from being back home in Vegas. Woo hoo!

I'm in Washington, DC!

June 9, 2003: Hey! I'm in DC! Not Vegas! And it's cool! I'm really getting to use my laptop by being away, as I can connect via a dialup connection and still interact with school and my website. Most excellent! I'm here in DC because I'm taking a class on Information Security. But the real fun part is the fact that I get to be in one of my favorite cities, Washington DC. I've loved this city ever since my Dad lived out here in Arlington. I have such great memories of trips to see him and then taking the Metro (which in my opinion is one of the best, if not the best, subway systems I've ever ridden, and I've been on a lot now) to all sorts of various destinations. Taking the Metro is always a neat experience. On this, I mean any subway type system. It's a situation where you are trapped with tons of other strangers yet you ignore them as if they weren't there. It's a great time to people watch because you can get away with it as most people are averse to looking you in the eye. When I don't people watch, I always feign like I'm deep in thought (yeah, like that's ever gonna happen) and give off the air of being trapped with a bunch of bourgeious pigs. If only my Ferrari weren't in the shop this week... I don't think anybody falls for it, but I always come up with a new alter ego when riding the subway. Yes, I'm insane.

I talked to my Dad today and found out that he will indeed be coming out for the promotion ceremony. Cool! It sounds like I'll have some Barnes representation at the party, which will be great. It should be a lot of fun - I just can't believe that it's going to be happening next month! Captain Barnes!

Alright, I guess I should actually do some work now. Till later.

Boulder Station is a go!

June 3, 2003: Just a quick notice. I went by Boulder Station today and talked with the lady in charge, Kay, and I saw not the room but one close to it, and I liked it a lot. It should be good for what I want to do, the price is right, and the view is outstanding. It faces the strip and downtown LV, so it's pretty cool. Make your reservations! You know where you need to be the weekend of the 18/19/20 of July!
What's New? I have updated my DVD listings and put up some pics of the visit just completed by my Lajes friends. Also, the Survivor:Amazon page has been retired to my personal archives.

Another great time with friends

June 1, 2003: This was a great weekend! It started well when Byron and Connie came to the strip Friday night. They were in town visiting Byron's folks who live in Pahrump, but they set aside Friday night to go hang out with me on the strip. It was awesome to see them again, but we had an agenda dammit! So we decided to go to the Luxor for dinner, as that was where the show was that we were going to go see - we saw the Blue Man Group! After eating at the Luxor buffet, we first spent some time at the tables, where we really didn't do that well. But we then went to the show, which was incredible! The Blue Man Group is a show you will be completely amazed by. You have no idea what you're getting into but you will be overwhelmed with visuals, sounds, music, and humor that by the end you can't believe that 2 hours has flown by. These guys are amazing musicians and incredibly funny. If you're ever in Vegas, you HAVE to see this show. It's outstanding and very entertaining. Highly highly recommended! After that though, while I promptly lost my casino money, Byron (aka Mr. Lucky) made a big splash at the Blackjack tables. Starting with $20, he ended up walking away with over $300! The boy could not stop getting good hands and he just had the luck of the gods when hitting and/or standing. Of course, that evening, his playing style ruined it for me (I'm not bitter.... ;-) ) But it was a very fun night!

Then on Saturday, I spent most of the first half of the day doing bloody homework, but after that nastiness, Jason & Wendy came up so they could also hang out with Byron & Connie & me (of course). It's always good to see them, and as soon as Byron & Connie arrived, we set out to Outback! Yay! I loves me some outback prime rib. After a great dinner, we then hit the strip, parking at Bally's and then working our way down eventually to New York, New York. Here I DID NOT gamble, surprise surprise, but I got properly blitzed while watching Byron (still Mr. Lucky) win $400 or so dollars this night at blackjack. I'm telling you, Byron was so lucky this trip. I hope it carries over whenever he attempts to gamble again. Because of his winnings, I demanded a cab instead of walking all the way back to the car. I really wanted a limo, but he wouldn't budge and no one else backed me up..... C'est la vie. By the end of the night, I was pretty trashed and tired, and I passed out on my couch while Jason & Wendy crashed on the air mattress in the spare room/office.

Today, we woke up and got going sometime around noon. We caught the movie "The Italian Job" at Sam's Town, which was a really good movie. There was this annoying-as-hell woman in front of us at the ticket line though, and I still have no idea what she was wanting the ticket person to do for her, but it ended up taking like 10 minutes or something. Sometimes people need to be slapped. I lost a little bit more money at the tables, but not too much. What I do need to figure out is a craps strategy to stick to. One day....
What's New? I finally finished Harv's birthday photos page. I had forgotten how long it takes to put one of those pages together, especially the way I like to do it. But it is finally done. Like I say on the page itself, if you want more printable versions (higher resolution), let me know and I'll email them to you.

Shoot me an email if you want to. I may respond. (okay, you know I will - what else have I got to do?)