Thursday, June 22, 2006

Washington: A Major League City? Not even a PGA City...

Sometimes I wonder why Washingtonians like to continually compare themselves to New York. Sure we have the overpriced but highly regarded dining options, and we have political power to match New York's financial power. But it's sometimes tough for me to think of Washington as an honest to god major city. What major city goes 20 some odd years without a Major League Baseball team, and then has to depend on a soon to be contracted Canadian team to move here out of desperation, while meanwhile, Tampa Bay is awarded an expansion team?! OK, so we have baseball again. Great. Now I read that this so called metropolis can't support it's PGA tournament. For what I assume is a pretty wealthy city, I find it hard to believe that there isn't enough interest in seeing the Booz Allen Classic. Even MILWAUKEE has a successful PGA tournament. Short of the occasional US Open held at Congressional, I guess people just don't care about this event. DC appears to be a good sports town. Redskins fans blindly love their team, despite their essentially hopeless chances of winning the past decade or so. The Wizards and Caps draw fans, and DC United is the best attended MLS team. Is golf different because there is no local team to rally around in a futile attempt to create rivalries with New York and other Eastern seaboard cities? I think the Examiner wrote an article this week about how the Nationals should try creating a rivalry with the Yankees rather than Baltimore. I can only assume this is because Baltimore is already a decrepit, drug and crime ridden cesspool that is best used as a movie setting for the deploying of a terrorist nuclear weapon, or as the setting of a cop show. So instead of Baltimore, let's just start yet another rivalry so we can imagine that Washington is on par with New York. And trust me, I am no lover of New York. Not by a long shot. But seriously, why keep pushing this charade. How about the city gets the capability of supporting and finding a sponsor out of all the war profiteers/defense contractors that call the area home for a PGA golf tournament. It can't be that hard. Just ask Reno, Nevada. We're the nation's capital for gods sake.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

More Convinced Not To Buy A Condo Right Now

So I thought I'd found a gem of a condo. There are some condos in Arlington that were being offered for the mid $200's for a 1 BR, a newly renovated former Executive Suites hotel. So now that I'll soon be paid a lot more, I attended my first ever condo party brouhaha at the Myerton Condominium. I will say, it was sweet drinking free booze and eating ample mediocre appetizers while pretending that I couldn't be more interested in the miniscule condos. Seriously, are people clamoring for condos averaging 540 square feet? You pretty much are forced to decide whether you want a couch or a dining table. Great... And all this for $270K. I guess the condo makers' assume the tried and true strategy to plop down some granite counters and stick some low quality stainless steel appliances in is enough to sell the product. That and a combo washer/dryer in the kitchen that looks like it should hold about 3 T-shirts. So not only do you get a chance to install a hybrid dinette set/futon to take advantage of the 10x10 main room, you get to do laundry about 3 times a week. I'm sure they'll sell just because of the low price tag (probably will take a while though), but I can definitely see future buyers remorse once they realize they can't fit anything. Of course they could pay $100K more for the 2 BR's which weigh in at a whopping 650 square feet. With minimal closet space. I'll chalk this up as a good experience. Because when free alcohol is involved, can there be a bad experience. But I think I'll keep surveying the landscape til something that's just right comes along.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

An Absent Blogger is the Worst Kind of Blogger

I know, I know, I know... I've been a lazy and absent blogger of late. Many exciting things have happened in the past few weeks, a few of which I've covered, but I've really been absorbed with real life lately and have been unable to post much of anything. This will change as of now. I've had a lot of stuff happen and dealt with some changes, including (some to be covered in more detail in the upcoming days):

1. Put in resignation at my government job to take a job at a private contractor. This will lead to me making a bunch more money, and hopefully not hating my job everyday.

2. In the event I do still hate my job, I can now start thinking of applying to law school as a fall back. I've been studying for the LSAT and took it on Monday. I actually think I did better than I expected, especially considering I didn't blow $1500 dollars on a stupid LSAT study class.

3. Moved to a new apartment. This was more of a pain than anything, just because moving blows. The new apartment is sweet, and I finally have my own place. No more roommate. Unfortunately, I signed a lease for the new apartment about 3 weeks before I decided to take a job about 25 miles away from it (as opposed to the roughly 1 mile I have to go to my soon to be ex-job). It's worth it though because I like Arlington, and I like the possibilities for going out that I have around here (Arlington, Old Town, DC).

4. Attended a gay pride parade party. I was of course thinking this would be embarassing for a heterosexual male to see, but it turned out to be a blast. Even though I saw more nearly nude males than I've been around since the junior high locker room. Showed up, decided I was too sober for it, and started pounding beers. It helped me to see the humor of the whole situation. More analysis later on how I have difficulty seeing how having men dress up in leather thongs furthers their cause.

5. Bought a new HDTV with my forthcoming signing bonus. HDTV is sweet, I only wish I had it when 24 and Survivor was on. The World Cup is awesome on it.

6. Speaking of soccer, hopefully under the guidance of blogger soccer god I-66, I'll be having an outdoor soccer team to play on. I think we've assembled a good group that will probably totally dominate the league with the lowest level of competition.

That about sums it up for now. I will cover these topics in more details. I promise.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Garrett's: Who Needs It

A lot of times when I hit up bars around here, I am left to wonder why people go there in the first place. I went to a sweet house party on the roof of a townhome with a great view of DC. This party was right across the Potomac from Georgetown. After hearing some DCites press some of my friends "to head back to the city for some real going out," we decided to go to Garrett's in Georgetown. Without getting too much into it, it's not like Rosslyn is a podunk part of Virginia. It looks more urban and citylike than anything in DC. But back to the topic at hand. Garrett's seems like an OK place when it isn't packed full. Like completely full. There is nothing wrong with Garrett's itself per se, it just isn't anything special from what I can tell. So the averageness of the place added to the extreme crowd there just leaves me baffled why so many people were there. It's not that fun fighting your way through like 30 feet of wall to wall people to get a beer. Then, it's not fun fighting your way through that 30 foot wall of people to get back to your friends, inevitably spilling on people as you push your way through. It's probably not fun for all of those people to be spilled on either when every 30 seconds someone is trying to push their way out of the bar area. And this goes for all three of their bars. There was no relief. Also, a special note to the group of Mr. Popped Collar Guys in Pastel Polos and Patch Madras Shorts (seriously a group of 4 guys all wearing slightly different J. Crew combos), I'm pretty sure that fad went out about a year ago, and even then, it was a lame fad. So what is drawing these people here? It's not like it's easy to meet people and talk when it's insanely loud and chaotic. Fill me in someone... Yeah I realize it's "in the city", and I've said the same thing with such Virginia bars as Mister Days or Clarendon Grill, but really, what is the draw other than telling people that you went out on Saturday to Garrett's?

On another note, I took a job with private industry. As referenced on a previous post, I took Job #2. It is going to be awfully nice to see that huge raise over my current Government salary. Tomorrow I get the fun of putting in notice and seeing how mad my bosses will be (even though I'm giving 3 weeks notice).

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Dilemma Time

As I last posted, I am in the midst of a job change. I have been presented with two job offers that I need to respond to in the next couple days. I am putting this out to the loyal fans of the Metro DC Sewer. Which one should I take?

The Facts:

Job #1: offered the most money by a large margin (like $15K more), is a job that has less job security, seemed to me to be boring, middle level defense contractor, the pay is a huge raise but the actual work is essentially a demotion (weird dichotomy), no chance at bonuses or other means of raising my income, work a regular 40 hour week

Job #2: offered less money but still substantially more than the Government pays me, at an elite defense contractor, real chance for career growth, bonuses (large I've heard, like 10's of thousands of dollars), performance review/raise in 6 months, work that will be challenging but will probably require some long hours every so often

So it is essentially Job #1's superior pay versus Job #2's superior work/work environment. What should I do?! I've been puzzling over this the last two days. I am leaning towards Job #2, but that money is really enticing.