Monday, January 30, 2006

First day at work!

Moving on from a job of 5 1/2 years is hard. There is a certain level of comfort, responsibility, and attachment. My last two weeks have been a mix of two emotions: on the one end, confidence that this was the right decision. "Get a job doing something you love, and you'll never have to work a day in your life." When this quote stopped ringing true for me, I knew it was time.

On the other end, there has been a lot of worry. "Am I qualified?" "Will my personality mesh with my new coworkers?" If I stay, I don't have to answer these questions ... Doubting sucks.

So, today was my first day at my new job. It's good to get it out of the way, because a lot of the doubt that I had is gone. Yes, this was the right decision. Yes, this will be a good situation for me. Alright, enough of the serious talk, what else happened?
  • Had to take the subway ... work is no longer walking distance (fuck!)
  • Lots of good food in the area of Church and Bloor
  • Moving from a company of 8 to a company of about 60-70 means there's a lot of names to memorize! It also means a lot of names to forget, i.e. what's that guy's name again?
  • Version control? What's that?
  • I had no pens, and no paper, and no idea who's responsible
  • I'm allowed to run MSN Messenger during the day! Bonus! Now I can make use of the co-workers group in MSN Messenger ...
  • A new guy is starting in 2 weeks. Maybe he'll be friends with me...

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Online Shopping iz Kewl

Well, that does it. I've spent my $700 in poker winnings, in about 3-4 days. I am not that big a spender by nature, and I come from a circle of friends where spending is frowned upon. Take Chris, for example, who for the longest time was leaving 10s and 5s when the rest of us were leaving 20s to cover a restaurant bill. Or Shaun, who likes to order iced tea -- without the ice -- in order to maximize drinkage. Or Jon, who never hung out with us for two years, because "we spend a lot of money going out on Friday night." That last one is a stretch, but I don't care. Fuck you Jon! Don't get me started on AI aka "My car is 'broken'". And to be fair, there's Chin, who's still using the same monitor from before puberty.

But I digress. What I want to talk about today is what I bought with my dirty gambling money. I was looking for a new poker book (go figure). A few websites have offered their take on the top 10 poker books of all time, and on a lot of them is a book by David Sklansky, titled "The Theory of Poker." Looking far and wide, I was never able to find this book at the book stores. But chapters.indigo.ca had it in stock and ready to ship. Done. I also wanted to pick up a couple of web development books from Sitepoint, one of my favourite destinations for new development techniques and technology. Free shipping if you buy 2 books or more? Don't mind if I do! I got money to burn, britches!

There are lots of cool things about shopping online. They give you tracking numbers, and you can follow that book from Connecticut to Massachusetts to your door. And it's pretty fast, too.
I got my poker book in 2 days, and my web development books came in yesterday, while I was away on business in Minneapolis. I checked online while in the hotel room, and when I found it was delivered I was as giddy as a 6-year old girl meeting Mickey in Disneyland. Where the fuck did that reference come from?

My next stop is to buy one of those funny geek shirts at ThinkGeek. Ah, crap, I ran out of money! Well, until I can win another poker tournament...

Monday, January 23, 2006

I hate business trips!

Despite loving the clients that I am dealing with, I hate business trips! Why? What kind of lame-ass question is that?
  • Waking up early in the morning ... earlier than usual
  • Smelly hotel bedsheets
  • Clearing US security at the airport. You have to take your shoes off! and I've seen people holding their pants up, because they had to take their belt off!
  • Worrying about when you're getting your expense cheque, after expensing shyte on your credit card
  • Not being with my wife. I love you baby!
  • Lack of water pressure in the hotel shower
The free meals, and the client-love, now that's what I'm talking about! Eggs benedict tomorrow morning? Dang, the race is coming soon. For real, I'm getting back to work ASAP.

Monday, January 16, 2006

The War

It all began with lunch. The wife and I go to eat dim sum. Delicious. Then we call my cousin and let her know that we're stopping by to say hello. You know, to meet my newborn nephew. Being the gracious hosts that they are, and despite telling them that we already ate lunch, my cousin's husband goes out and buys pizza. And Popeye's chicken.

So, even though we already ate lunch, we eat pizza. And Popeye's chicken. And cookies. And ice cream. What am I supposed to do? Spit on their food? So now, with two meals in my stomach, we go to Square One to get our shop on. Walking around Wal-mart, I get the call ... the war against defecation begins.

I quickly waddle over to the washroom. There's a sign hanging over the door: Washroom closed. Fuck. The next closest washroom is down the stairs, by People's Jewellers. This shit's coming out, man! I finally make it down the stairs, into the men's washroom, and there are 3 stalls. All occupied. WTF? This has never happened to me before! The guy using the handicapped stall finally relinquishes control. He has an evil look in his eye.

Defecation: 1 Al: 0

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Poker!

I hate to brag, but not really. On Saturday night, I played in a 30 player poker tournament at Jay Abiog's place. This date was marked on my calendar for about a month. I was pumped. I even re-read chapters of Phil Gordon's "Little Green Poker Book" during the day to prepare my strategy and plan of attack.

The buy-in was $50. The other two tournaments I've been in (which I hosted) were for $30 and $20, so comparatively, this was a big tournament. The winner gets $700, which is pretty good coin for one night's work. So enough of the setup, Al, what the fuck happened?

After 6 hours of poker, and 29 busted players, I took down the final table and won the tourney! How did I do it? Luck: Anyone that says you don't need luck to win at poker is either stupid or retarded. I got dealt big slick (that's Ace-King for the newbies) early on in back-to-back hands. I also got big slick in the tournament's defining hand: all-in with A-K (approx. $5000 in chips) called by not one, but two players. The flop comes K-K-3. I flopped trips. I take a commanding chip lead and proceed to bully my way to heads up action. The odds of getting dealt big slick are 110-1. The odds of flopping trip kings when you hold A-K are 73-1.

What's next? Shopping! You don't spend dirty money on bills or necessities. You spend it on toys! Thanks to Jay and Joy for hosting, and thanks to the other players for giving me y'all money! Until next month, when I host another tourney at my place ... I'll have Super/System II read by then for sure!

Monday, January 09, 2006

Damn Raptors!

Even with yesterday's loss to the Nets, the Raptors have won 7 of their last 10. How many of those wins did Lil Lex get to watch in entirety? Maybe 1. WTF? Between Christmas parties and work, something has always come up in the last 2 weeks to prevent me from basking in Raptor glory. Hey, we haven't seen a 5 game winning streak in like 2 years! Why, basketball gods, why dost thou punish your most loyal of followers?

The wife says that I'm a curse. For the Raptors to make the playoffs, I must stop watching them play. That's about as likely as me having a homo-erotic encounter with Jon (the cottage doesn't count ... We were sleeping together, not sleeping together).

Anyways, when life slows down for me, I'm going back to Raptors NBA TV. You better keep your winning ways, bitches!

PS: I hate Vince Carter