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11 May 2009 @ 01:53 pm
Full weekend  
Well, takayla is in Japan, and having a pretty good time despite being a stranger in a strange land and a little homesick. We IM each other every day, send texts, and she sometimes calls, but it costs a LOT to use her cell, so we don't do that often. She's been sending me a lot of stuff about Japan, and it sounds utterly fascinating. Giant crows, decorated traffic cones, soda vending machines are everywhere, and the town she's at right now plays a little tune over the loudspeakers every day at 5pm. She's also been the guest for several people, dealt with the local town council, and been eating all kinds of new food.

I am totally jealous. But I am also having the most amazing adventures.

I am staying at Brian and Anya's house a few days here and there so they can give me rides to the metro while takayla is gone. They have been very gracious hosts, and I am doing my best not to annoy them. Their pets sure like me. Of course, all but Suki knows me already. Suki is their new puppy, a Bichon/Dachshund(?) mix. She's very small, but playful and friendly.

Now, while takayla is in Japan, here's what I did over the weekend:

Friday:
Friday night, I saw a 12:45am showing of the new "Star Trek" movie at an IMAX Theater in Alexandria with Brian, Anya, CR, Terri, and her husband Lee. While IMAX was impressive, it seemed no better than a big theater, and was NOT AT ALL like the IMAX at the Air and Space Museum (which is monster huge). The film itself was very good. There were some parts I didn't care for, like the constant lens glare effect, and the fact the action sequences were a little too fast for my taste. But the acting and writing were solid, and kept me interested. I give the movie a solid B or maybe a B+.

This dumped us out at 3am in a parking lot near the Eisenhower Avenue Metro station where we hung out until 4:30 in the morning. Terri is Japanese/Hawaiian, former military, and a stanger on the East Coast herself (she's here because her husband is stationed here). Completely Americanized, I can't help but make comparisons to her and my teenager friend Copper (or her sister, Velvet). While Copper came from a Korean family via California, Terri has that same "lets go do something" mentality that Copper was famous for. She looks nothing like Copper, but reminds me of her in many ways. Her husband Lee is a quiet man, but nice after he relaxes a little. We also picked up "Nathan," a guy who looked 16, but was in his late 20s. We picked him up in line because Anya and Terri are the kind of people who do that, which is an excellent quality, IMHO. We got home at about 5:00am, and I crashed.

Saturday:
Somehow I woke up at 9am anyway. Four hours of sleep? Well, I made it anyway. Not sure how. After browsing the web and catching up on e-mail, I got a lift to the Fanconia/Springfield Metro Station to head to DC. Here I volunteered with the DC Rollergirls. This time around, I did set-up and was also a "bouncer."

Setup was mostly to do with chairs, but this time I also helped set up the track which involved standing on ropes, cables, and angle measuring brackets. Nothing exciting there. O'Canadoll (a former rollergirl from Secretaries of Hate) was our leader, and she is really cool.

Being a "bouncer" was also kinda... soft. Our boss was Mr. Coffin, a younger man with big muscles who... looked like a bouncer. I chose to guard the practice area, which needed to be free of people so the roller girls and the halftime performers could practice before the bouts and during the first half of the game. The main concern was kids wandering into the huge open space and getting run down by a girl, or people leaving debris that could trip up a girl on skates. Because the DC Armor (the new indoor arena football team) has been practicing and will perform there this fall, they glue down the AstroTurf on the floor during games. This left glue residue behind, which we had to scrape off with a tool, and this left little tar balls here and there. The only "bouncing" I had to do was people stealing chairs. Some fans didn't want to sit on the floor in the "danger zone" and so tried to snatch chairs and move them. This is NOT allowed for several good reasons. First, we have to keep certain areas free and clear for fire code regulations. Some people think this is "prime seating" because nobody is sitting there. The other reason is the first rows around the track are the "danger zone," which is where girls out of control crash into the crowd. Speaking in a practical manner, crashing into soft human bodies is preferable to crashing into hard plastic chairs AND human bodies. So I had to be a dick for a few people who tried t pressure me to go back there and take chairs "just sitting around." No sir, I am sure you have a bad back, might I suggest the bleachers which have theater seats? Lot of empty seats there -- oh, you also have bad eyesight? I would suggest getting glasses and then arriving earlier next time to get some chairs closer. I am sure traffic is horrible, but hey, if you get here early enough, we can put you to work. One woman said I was not a very nice man to guard the chairs, that she just wanted "one chair," and then wanted to escalate the situation. I suggested she speak to my boss, the man in the red shirt behind the DJ table or the woman in the green hat, and she said that was poor to blame my boss for my behavior. Yeah, I have no idea what she meant by that, either. She eventually went to one of the security guards that the DC Armory hires (in uniforms with guns) and he gave her a chair from another row. I thought she was going to flaunt that in front of me, but she was actually scared to make eye contact with me, and sort of hid from me the rest of the game. That was funny. Whatever, lady, you win. Heh. But MOST people were very very nice. Especially volunteers.

Halftime was pretty good. We had the DC Armor cheerleaders and a double-dutch jump-rope team. And a homemade tee-shirt cannon made from PVC and an air compressor.

Last time, most of the girls didn't interact with me, and that was understandable, I was a guy and a new guy at that. This time, a few girls did, and I am sure, over time, I'll be a regular staple like Carlos (another bouncer), Deutch Bag (a ref), and Mr. Mystery (a ref I made friends with last time). Mr. Mystery, BTW, is such a cool guy. He's so friendly and personable. He even gave me half his sandwich so I didn't have to wait for the cafeteria to open. This was the first time I hung out with a few refs, too. Great bunch of guys and gals. I got to spend some brief conversation with Arms Akimbo, and another ref whose name escapes me, but she's really tall. Again, O'Canadoll was wonderful and personable, even though people were demanding her attention left and right. She really needs and assistant. I'd recommend Chance, but she's not into roller derby so much.

The Heares came by to support Triple-D as well. I got to hang out with Scarlet and Kieran, which was mega-fun. Scarlet is still coming with me to Balticon, which will also be mega-fun. I also got to meet an old coworker I always liked, Melissia, whi it turns out also knew another Melissa friend of mine, aka "Missie." Small world. Rob was also there, a friend of Triple-D since childhood like stodgycat (I know Triple-D through stodgycat as well). Then we all went back to the Heare house and had pizza. I had a long talk with Melissa about Reiki.

I had Rob drive me back to my house, where I spent the night so I could spend Sunday with CR.

Sunday:
I woke up, again, like at 8am. I couldn't go back to sleep. So I decided, before CR woke up (he worked until 11:30pm, so he was not going to get up for a while), to do some housework. The weather was AMAZING. So I took this opportunity to mow the lawn, which had gotten REAL shaggy. We had nearly a straight week of rain, and even though I had done the law a few days before that, it was like an abandoned field with tall grass and weeds up to my knees. I managed to get BOTH lawns done in record time, like less than 3 hours. I also re-tilled the garden because the soils' been fertilized and weeds like fertilizer. Then I did 3 loads of laundry, 2 loads of dishes, cleaned the cat boxes, fed the cats and dogs, and tackled the finances and got caught up with bills. I also tended to my tomato seedlings, which are now pretty much past the seedling stage to "plants." I will be ready to give some out by next week. They are getting big! And growing so fast...

When CR woke up, we watched "Transformers," which I thought was a good CGI and action flick, but had terrible acting and writing. We also watched some other shows before it was time for me to leave. The evening ended with TV with Brain and Anya, and I went to bed, my head filled with so many things.