Sunday, October 2, 2011

List of 16

I was labeling old post… mostly things along the lines of “Iowa” “DC” “Disney” etc.… and I came across one of the first post I wrote on this site, I have since attached my Disney blog.
Back in January of 2009, my mom started a blog and wanted us (Kassie, Kaci, Me, and Kinsey) to write a list of 16 things about ourselves and put it out into the world (or what she would say “blop” world to see)

I’m not completely sure if my first list of 16 things could fall into the completely random section or how completely random this list will turn out to be....
But 2009-Kelsey is a different person then 2011-Kelsey. 
So here we go

1) Being an adult scares the crap out of me.
I’m now 25 and even though I packed up all my stuff and moved half away across the country over a year ago and pay bills I still don’t feel like an adult

2) I spend more money on coffee then I do on food. As I write this I’m sipping on a $4 chocolate mocha

3) I’ve had to order 4 different replacement cards from my small town IA bank this year. I’m not helping the stereotypes they must have in their head about City-living.

4) I still have no idea what I want to do with my life. This is probably why I don’t feel like an “adult”

5) I’ve gone on over 20 first dates since living in DC.

6) I don’t like wine. But I drink it.

7) I could never be a vegetarian and I would never even think about being a vegan

8) I spend way too much time reading daily comics online. 

9) I will always write “to” before writing “too” and I waste way too much time having to go back and correct it.

10) The only reason I spend money on a gym membership is to justify the amount of Big Gulps I drink and the amount of fast food I consume on a weekly basis.

11) I’m really bad at remembering names and faces.

12) I’ve always liked driving. I find it peaceful and I wish I lived in a city where having a car was needed. 

13) I still get amazed that someone will stop you on the side of the street and talk to you about Iowa football –or iowa in general- when you are wearing an Iowa shirt.

14) Someone once told me that they don’t understand movies that have the underlining message of “family is the most important thing.” He had no relationship with his parents or siblings and my immediate reaction was shock and sadness. 

15) I have never returned a drink or food item because I didn’t like it.

16) Regardless of where I’m at, if I see a bug my immediate reaction is to kill it. 
and I do think this makes me a bad person. 

Monday, September 5, 2011

dc: one year


When I first moved here I liked it, but I definitely didn’t love it.  Sure I loved aspects of it: the museums, the free cultural events, and the idea of DC.  But in reality I spent a lot of time just hanging out by myself and searching for things to do. 
Half of it was the job I had.  The amount of young people I worked with was on the lower side (umm, 2) and I didn’t have much interaction with the other interns in the museum.   I came to love the majority of my coworkers there, but they either lived far away or were out of my age category (seriously, I worked w/a lot of grandmas). And it took until a girl’s birthday in January before any of us actual hung out.

By February I was fed up with my DC slacking attitude and accomplished my 28 things in 28 days.
It was awesome! 
I always had something planned and occasionally I could convince one of my 2 DC friends to go with me.   I got a chance to explore those new places of DC that I’ve been putting off for the previous 6 months. 
In March they extended my internship again, this time my end date was going to be the end of September.  I had a breaking point around this time.  I really just wanted to move home.  DC wasn’t turning out to be the place I wanted to live and I had a total of one job interview for the 4 months worth of jobs I applied for.  I was ready to leave. 
DC in my mind was this clichy-cliché that was full of yuppies and unwelcoming strangers.
And I was only meeting people who fell into these categories.  Strangers who wanted to one-Up you in everything. 

Examples
Me: half my face was once in rolling stone magazine
Stranger: well my dad writes for Rolling Stone magazine

Me: I worked at Disney World for 8 months
Stranger: Well I once auditioned for a Disney channel movie.

It got to the point where I stopped talking about myself when I met new people.  And trust me it is harder then it sounds.  

In May I finally had a job interview for a job I wanted and got a new job as a result (yippy!) and I finally was put into this environment where I actually worked with people around my own age.
And more importantly people who hated this DC one-UPing game more then I did.  A group of people who wanted to do Happy Hour and just hang out.  It was as if I had to go through this bad DC-No-Friend-experience to get an awesome group of new peeps. 

The best examples of the change:
My birthday:
Last year: I spent it going to my first day of work at USHMM where the only person to wish my happy birthday was the security guard issuing me my ID badge. And my birthday dinner was spent eating alone at McDonalds
This year: I went to chef Geoffs with actual people and enjoyed their 5.95 burgers, 7.95 super mugs, and where “my bartender” made us amazing shots. 

Kinsey’s visits
March: I had to google where to go for Happy Hour
July: I had friends suggest places for us to go and more importantly there was an actual group of people who joined us. 

Over the summer I got mugged (shocking, I know) and when I was spending the 5 hours in the ER I had a small (ok, large) breaking point. I didn’t know who to call or what to do.  Allison wasn’t answering her phone and my family lives in Iowa/Florida.  Eventually I got ahold of Ruth and she came to get me without a second thought. 
When I came back to work almost everyone I worked with told me “Kelsey, why didn’t you call me?” and it was that point that I realized DC is a great place.  Of course it take me until I had a black eye and a sprained knee before I realized it, but at least I realized it. 

Beyond this great group of co-workers I have recently became friends with a group of people outside of my work environment.
This weekend I made the decision to finally hang out with a group of internet-folks that I had been talking to for a while.  It was a last minute decision and I took my time meeting with them.  But as soon as I introduced myself they were more then willing to let a stranger into their group.  The complete opposite of the group of people I first met when I moved here. 
I went out for drinks with them on Friday and quickly became friends with a fellow* blogger, on Saturday I causally hung out with them and played the best game ever (Cards against humanity), and last night I ventured over to the NE to hang out with them once again. 
The one weekend I spent with these new friends is the perfect example of what I wanted out of my DC experience.  I just wish it had happened a year ago.


*this gets an * b/c Kassie like to think that I can’t call myself a blogger anymore. 

Monday, May 2, 2011

“Peace out Bin Laden”

Yesterday could only be defined as one of those long uncomfortable days at work, a day where I had no choice but to leave early.  When I got home at around 5:00pm, I passed out.  I left my phone in my purse and feel asleep with my work clothes on.  At around 10pm -after 5 hours of glorious sleep- I woke up, put real PJs on, looked at my phone, and finally responded to some old text.

As I was falling quickly back to sleep I got the most confusing text from my younger sister ever.  It stated:

Peace out Bin Laden

In my tired state I assumed it was some pop culture slogan or trend that I was too old to understand (and my sister is only a year and half younger than me, but she is also a high school math teacher…and I assume she is more in the know then me.)

About 30 minutes later she tells me 
umm you two better be at the white house singing :) go USA

 My response “I don’t think I know what you are talking about
My sister fills me and I respond “that is to patriotic for me
She says “it’s happening.  DC is happy
And my immediate thought is “wait, I didn’t even think he was a real threat anymore… I bet it is just tourist.  But then again some DC folks are crazy.  I’ll just watch a video of it tomorrow…. Maybe
Our convo concluded with her telling me “I’ll have lots of stuff to read tomorrow” and that “twitter is blowing up.

I drift back to sleep with no desire to check the internet myself.  Mostly b/c the only place I can get an internet connection in my place is if I stand in my kitchen and that seemed like too much work and my body needed more sleep.
I received another text from a friend who lives out of state asking me “if I was at the white house
And this morning when I responded I realized I would have no idea what is going on in the world if it wasn’t for my sister.
I have no Smartphone (gasp), no TV (bigger gasp), and my internet is sketchy and not reliable.
And actually paying for a print newspaper is just crazy.  I’ll stick to my free copy of the “Express” I get in the morning.  And this Monday’s edition had no mention of this event. (fail)

But b/c I have a sister who is in the know, I have some clue of what was “happening” in dc.
After about 13 hours of sleep I finally checked the internet (in my kitchen) and realized that I was a little angry at not going to the White House last night.   I mean when is the next time I'll have the opportunity to partake in complete random patriotic celebration in front of the White House
Of course there is no way I would have had enough energy to walk or ride the bus the 30 some blocks to get to the White House.  And I know that since I would have gone by myself I would have probably just stood in the back and snapped a few photos and headed home after about 10 minutes.  
Not worth it at all.  (But think of how much more exciting this post would be with photos)
This morning: I did the most patriotic thing I could think of… I went to McDonalds and ordered a number 3.
A delicious: bacon, egg, and cheese biscuit with a hash brown and a small coke. 
It was everything I hoped it would be.

maybe later today (if my stomach can handle it) i'll get a nice American Beer and sip it while eating an American chesses burger with freedom fries.  perhaps while listening to American music.. jazz. 

On my way home I saw this on the streets of Adams Morgan.
I’m not sure if I have completely ever understood the whole “God Bless America” thing… or why we think we are so important.  But whatev.
GO USA!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

#thecoolslossgirls

Kinsey is visiting me this weekend.  Right now she is taking a nap (typical) and I’m writing this post.  I’m debating creating a catchy hashtag for twitter this weekend something along the lines of #thecoolslossgirls or #kaciandkassiewishestheywerethiscool.  

Thoughts?

I sketched out a slight plan for the weekend. It mostly looks like this
Friday:
Noon: lunch; Chinatown, maybe Good Stuff Eatery, maybe just peanut butter sandwiches
1-5:30ish: museums, fun photos!
5:30-?? Happy hour.
(Friday is really just being revolved around the idea of happy hour)

Saturday: sleeping in day (by Kinsey’s request)
Zoo!
Maybe cupcakes
Out and about: perhaps Hst.

Sunday:
Holocaust museum
Monuments
Fun photos!!
Columbia station jazz
Maybe trivia.

I don’t know if dc is ready for #thecoolslossgirls!

Friday, April 15, 2011

can someone get the lights?

The other day at work this very tourist couple comes up to me.  The type of couple that doesn’t actually look at the books or real merchandise we sale in the shop but the couple that buys a postcard, pen, magnet, and so-forth.  They are also the type of individuals that wear the American flag shirts, fanny packs, khaki cargo shorts, and speak with a southern drawl.  I generally have no problem with these types of tourist and I generally love how predictable they are. 

And given that I work at the Holocaust Museum sometimes these are the first types of tourist to shock you.  They will ask the most intense questions and are the ones that are really moved by the Permanent Exhibit. 
This particular couple buys two “remember” buttons,  two “what would you have done” pens, and a “what you do matters” tote bag.  Which is a normal purchase - and they didn’t even bother to look at the 60+ books we have at this kiosk… but at least they bought items that had a positive message on them.?

When they are walking away they turn to me and the guy says
since, you work here can I ask you something?
At this point I am mentally prepared for the array of questions I might get.

The typical dc tourist questions … where can I get food, when does the Smithsonian close, where is the Smithsonian, where’s the fill in the blank monument, what is the closest metro, etc

Or the questions about the museum…. Where are the shoes, restrooms, elevators, where is the Anne Frank exhibit, how do I start, etc

Or the off the wall questions…. They had a picture on the 3rd floor that mentioned a girl who hid her friend do you have a book about that, I read a book ten years ago about a guy who survived the holocaust do you have that book, when was the building built, my great grandfather is a survivor and did an interview where can I see that, etc.

But NO, he doesn’t ask me any of those questions.

He looks at me and says: “why is it so dark in the museum?
My response: “it is dark as a way to preserve the artifacts that are in the Permanent Exhibit

Him: “well, I don’t understand.  I have been to lots of museum that are bright
Me:well, we are dealing with artifacts that are highly sensitive"

Him:I get the whole artifact thing, but the hallways between the exhibits should be lit better."
and after a brief pause he adds "be sure you tell someone about that"
Me as the couple walks away. “Uuummm, okay?... but I think the dark hallways add to the whole feel of the museum.

I will never understand why people vent and complain to people who work in the shops.  We literally have no control over this stuff and I would have no idea who I would tell to turn the lights up… and I’m pretty sure if I wrote the museum director an email about the light issue she would respond with a simple “no.”  And I would honestly never do that….  There is a reason the lights are dimmed, we have timed tickets, we don’t sell food in the museum, etc. 

People just crack my up sometimes.  Complain to the information desk, write a letter, put up a negative yelp review, write a blog post, tweet about it, etc.  
don’t complain to me.  
b/c I’m just going to tell my coworkers, write a blog post, tweet about it, etc.

Conclusion: Undercover boss doesn’t happen in the real world!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

The life and times of a fake federal employee

I don’t know if you guys have been living in a bubble lately, but in case you have been for the past month I’ll refresh you all on what’s going on in the world.
 
Okay that was a lie.

I’m just going to tell you what’s going on with the world that directly affects me.
And currently that is only the possibility for a government shutdown starting Friday at midnight.
And honestly my details on this issue are pretty small.
But what I do know is that since I work in a museum that is half federal and half private, we will be closed.
And unfortunately I’m part of the half that is “private”… ie- I get paid through donations.

To recap: the museum will be closed, but I will still have to report to work.
This means: I will have to spend 9 hours a day doing “busy work
Busy work in a place that will have no one in it to mess it up
Which can only mean one thing… cleaning.

I have already let my manager know that I will be willing to stand outside and let people know that we are closed.
Which I think they should really consider
Mostly b/c Visitor Service is a federal position and I’m charismatic and have a pretty smile. 

Monday, April 4, 2011

I'm a stair climbing champ!

I was home this past weekend.
During that time I participated in the American Lung association Fight for Air Climb.
 And the only reason I’m posting this is b/c I wanted to post the above photo that was on this website
(you can also see the less flattering pictures of me and my teammates on that site)

And you can also see here, that I did not get last place.  
287 place to be exact!  
And I also didn’t finish last in my group. 
4th to be exact!
with a total time of: 15:03
(how long does it take you to walk up 66 flight of stairs... I bet it takes you longer than 15 minutes)


and most importantly to remind myself that after walking up 
66 flights of stairs 
I can now be lazy for the next month and take the elevator.

It should be noted that the escalator was broken at the Smithsonian Metro stop the other day and I sucked-it-up and walked up the stairs b/c the elevator would have took longer and I was already running late.  
But I learned my lesson and I will not be doing that again. 

hope to see you all next year!!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

final 5 days!

Day 24: Vice President Biden at the Holocaust Museum

RSVP required and an awesome twitpic
My view
I slight preview of his speech

And
Alison’s Birthday Diner
HuHot style with free awesome dessert

Day 25: National Archives Free Oscar Film Preview
Restrepo


Day 26: Allison’s Birthday Party
Natural disaster themed
Themed snacks and dress up… always a good time

DC famous… but beyond that no one has ever heard of it.
But the Obama family and Bill Cosby get to eat their for Free.

Day 28: Lincoln Memorial at night

Yippy, I'm done!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

US Capitol

Day 23: Tour of the Capitol
The only real perk to being an intern is that we occasionally get to go on awesome fieldtrips.  This particularly day we went to the US Capitol.  And sure anyone can do this, but we get a tour from someone who gives us a little insight on what it is actually like to do their particular job. (in this case; what it is like to give tours and what it is like to be a museum curator in a place like the capitol)
… of course we didn’t get a tour inside the congressional chambers, but I can see that on CSPAN and it doesn’t look all the impressive.
I did of course take a million pictures of pointless statues and random other artifacts that mean nothing to me. 

Touring the Capitol is one of those things I’ve wanted to do since I’ve moved to DC… but unfortunately it is also one of those things you can’t do by yourself. 
Needless to say I was very happy to go with a group of museum interns.

Photos:  enjoy my random descriptions that will probably only be half right!
Fun Fact: This clock was set 5 -or 10 mins I can't remember now- fast to make sure everyone would be on time
The closest I got to anything "important" this is either the entrance to the House of the Senate.
Fun thought: I like to think the guard is reading an important document!
fun fact: this is the same width as the floor we were standing on.  (of course that means nothing to you, but if you ever go you will now have this little bit of knowledge)
they had this image going around the above image.  it showed America's history through Christoper Columbus to the Wright Brothers. 
fun fact: the face of this baby is really a face of one of the painters who put together this image.  
Fun Fact: John Quincy Adams desk was here and he would occasionally pretend to be asleep and from this location you can here perfectly what an individual across the room was saying (even in a whisper). the individual desk who was across the room was -of course- an opposing party member. 


Friday, March 11, 2011

Presidential Stuff

Day 21: President’s Day Events and Bookstores
On my intern work cultural calendar it stated that the White House Visitor Center was going to have free arts and crafts, music, and activities all day.
I went and they had no such thing.
Well, they had a table set up with coloring books and a puzzle.  that was it.
But I did watch the informative video about the White House and look at the small displays they had up.
Later that day –b/c I felt like I needed to do something else- I checked out a few book store in Dupont Circle. 
The most noteworthy was “Kramers Bookstore” I’ve heard people talk about this one before –Kaci actually sent me a text telling me to go there- and I’ve been meaning to check it out.  This particular day they were closing earlier for maintenance   and there was not any free music or event going on.  But I did browse the bookstore for a good hour, I didn’t buy anything b/c I really need to love a book before I buy it, but it was still fun.

Day 22: Kennedy Center Millennium Stage
The Kennedy Center has free shows 365 days a year ever night at 6:00pm.  It is one of those things that you can always do so you never actually go to. 
This particular day they had the “New England Conservatory of Music” Performing.
I’m not completely sure if I’ve actually watched anyone play the piano solo before, but it was definitely interesting.  I mean I’m not completely sure if I could have sat through 2 hours of this, but for 60 mins it was interesting. 
They also had a trio-group perform and a singer accompanied by the piano.
All of which made me want to make my future child practice the piano for 3 hours a day.

you can watch the performance I saw HERE!

Conclusion:  if you are in DC and want to feel cultured you should check out the free Kennedy Center shows. 

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Trivia Night:1 Kelsey:0

Day 20: Trivia Night
For as long as I can remember I’ve always wanted to participate is some sort of Bar Trivia Night.  They had it when I was in college at Deadwood, and if you know anything about my friends you know that they are not the type of people who would want to go to Deadwood on a Tuesday.  (on a Saturday at around 1am I can convince them that a photobooth photo at Deadwood is a must)

But here in DC they have an array of bars that have trivia nights, trivia nights on any night of the week.
I convinced Allison to go with me to Bedrock Billiards on the Sunday before President’s Day to try out their weekly trivia.  (I knew she would have no excuse not to go, since that Monday was a Federal Holiday and I knew she wouldn’t have to work)
They were surprisingly busy (which probably relates to the whole Monday Holiday thing) and we found an awkward corner at the edge of the bar to stand at –right next to a drunken sweaty old man- and was already to start.
We were a group of 2 and the max was a group of 5 –the group next to us had 6, they cheated- and we were all ready to kick some trivia A**

Round one: Presidents
WTF!
In Elementary school our school focused more on learning the state and capitals and spending a year on Iowa history.  Learning the order of the Presidents was never a priority.
And sure I have a degree in Political Science, but that was about as useful in trivia as it is in getting me a real job.
The only question we got right was who the first president to have a beard was.
Thanks Ab Lincoln!

 Round 2: Egypt
Have I mentioned my public school education already?  In HS taking world geography was a class, but I thought taking World and American History was more important… boy was I wrong.
And Moses was not an answer to any of the questions.
But thankfully Allison has been following the whole Egypt thing and she was able to come up with a handful of correct questions.
And the drunken sweaty old guy next to us rambled off a couple of answers for us. 

Round 3: Picture Clues
This round we were giving a sheet of paper that had picture clues and you had to come up with the national capital and the country.  Something along the lines of this image + p – another picture = this. (I tried to Google and image but was not completely sure how to word this kind of trivia)
-At this point we realized that we were not going to be anywhere close to winning this thing-

Round 4: Name that song
Here they slowed down a random song by 50% and we had to name the title and the band.
And this was harder than you would think.  (and bsb was not the correct answer to anything)

Round 5: actors turned singers
I was all prepared for this round to have answers such as; Justin Timberlake, Ashlee Simpsons, Miley Cryus… you know famous pop singers.
But it was questions like “this famous actor was in a High School band in the 80’s what was the band called?”
Hmmm, IDK.
Here was just started putting down “J.Bieber” each time we didn’t know.

Trivia ended and we stayed to hear the scores.
And to put this in perspective the winning team scored 70 points.  (They were the team right next to us, who had the 6 members.)
And we came in with 23 Points.  
We got last place.
No joke! 
Last place, out of about 25 teams. 
Yep, we rock!

This is not the team that won the night we were there.  But this is the image I got when I googled “Bedrock Billiards Trivia Night
They look all smug like "hey we just won $50 dollars" ($50 that can probably only be used on your bar tab, which will only pay for about 3 drinks here in DC)
But hey… maybe you should use that to pay for the interest on your Ivy League education. 
I’m sorry… I’m just bitter. I'm sure they are really nice people.  

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Mother Language Day

 Day 19: Languages of the world
This event (Mother Language Day) was at the sixth and I synagogue.  I’ve been there once before and that experience was a weird one in itself. You can read that post here.  

But this experience was completely different and I actually left the event with this great desire to learn a foreign language.  But not any language a language that was becoming a dead language.

There were musicians and dancers from Bangladesh, Palestine, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Japan, US (Native American), Peru, etc.

It was amazing to see all of these different people and cultures in one place.

I took some amateur 30 sec video clips of some of the performers, but in typical fashion my internet will not let me load them.  
... instead here are some youtube clip.  
of course this youtube clip is only advertising the event.
but still this advertisement is 10x better than the clips I tapped. 
youtube clips that are 10x better then the clips I tapped with my digital camera. 


and to make up for my lack of video evidence... here is some flickr photographs that -of course- someone else posted. 

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Foreign dry humor... no thank you.

Day 18: Frontier Blues
I went to this on a Friday after work.  I really wished I would have gone with my second option I had written down, but I was tired and this event seemed easy.

Easy b/c it was a movie at the Freer-Sackler Theatre which is on the National Mall right by where I work. 
The movie was describe as...
A chicken-farm worker whose best friend is a donkey, a clothing store owner whose wares never fit anyone, a man learning English so he can marry a woman he's never even talked to, and a traditional musician who's not quite traditional enough for the photographer doing a project on him: These are just a few of the oddballs populating Babak Jalali's dry, absurdist comedy. "
it had all the potential to be a great movie...

They also added “dry humor” when they introduced it.
I thought I liked “dry humor”….. but, ohhhh was I wrong.

Apparently dry humor is not entertaining when you don’t get the culture references and you have to read subtitles. 

10 minutes into the movie I wanted to fall asleep. 



... this is definitely the worst thing I've done this month. 

Monday, February 28, 2011

podcast... I mean just a normal bar experience

Day 17: YouMeThemEveryone Podcast

The original event I had planned for this Thursday no longer existed when I re-looked it up to make sure I had all my info correct.  So on this Thursday I was in a slight predicament about what to do.  Do I just do nothing this day and double up on another day or frantically search the internet for something to do?
I went with the second option.  
And at the last minute –right around 7:45- I found an event that started at 8:30 in an area of town I’ve never been in, for a live taping of a podcast.  (technically this could be 3 new things; new bar, location, and  podcast)

When I arrived I got a great spot at the bar.  Great not b/c it was close to the stage, but great b/c it was at the bar.  And for those of you who don’t know sitting at the bar is really the only option when you go out by yourself.
I made a temporary friends with the girl sitting next to me.  She was waiting for two of her friends to show up and we were both in the awkward… hmmm, what to do now stage?  We talked about my 28 things in 28 days and she told me about the time she devoted a whole year to saying “Yes” more.  It was a great time.  
A great time until her friends showed up and she decided to talk to them instead of me.

But I was soon “saved” by an old guy sitting next to me; an old guy who was probably only in his late 30’s or early 40’s, worked in the real estate business, and was unmarried.  All of which are factors that immediately freak me out.  We talked for a good 10 minutes about DC, Iowa, random authors, flag footballs, the best DC areas to live in (which is not the area in which I currently live), meeting new people, etc. 
When he left I was both happy and sad.  Happy b/c I didn’t have to talk to him anymore and sad b/c now I had no one to talk to.

Anyway:  back to the podcast.
Let’s see they had a host who would occasionally say something profound, a comedian who was 18 or 19 who made lots of jokes about sex and drinking –a college house party would have really loved him- he was mediocre, and a band that was surprisingly good.
And that was basically it.  I couldn’t really hear the main part of the podcast, but I’m not really stressing over it and don’t really care.

My temporary friend I made at the beginning of the night introduced me to her friends and they tried to give me suggestions for me 28 things.
Which included; going to the top of the Washington monument (already did), Sunday brunch (which I guess is a big deal here in DC, but I work weekends), go on a happy hour bar crawl (once again I work weekends), and go to a make your own beer place (hmm, I live on a budget).

Conclusion:  I really liked the bar (the looking glass lounge) and if I lived closer to the area I would go there more often.  I could have cared less about the podcast. 

If I had a Trillion Dollars I'd be Rich

Day 16: Trillion Dollar Question
The one word I would use to describe this event is awkward.
The first 5 minutes were okay… we walked in.  it was FREE.  And we got FREE food. 
I mean what could be better?

The only thing I remembered from the description to this event was “high school students who made 3 minute videos about what they would do with a trillion dollars.” I was oblivious before this event started about the hiding meaning of this event.  Even though I should have connected the trillion dollar question in my head… I didn’t.

As soon as I walked in I figured it out, they had FREE stuff all over the room with this image on it.---> 
And I am all too familiar with this image from the days I actually went to political events in Iowa. 

The event started after a brief unorganized introduction. And they did show a 3 min video.  But it was only one videonot numerous like I thought- and it was a video that won some national award.**

I didn't feel like looking through all the videos but here is the youtube link. 

The video itself was average at best.  But I can overlook that since the kids are in High School and probably don’t have access to fancy mancy video equipment.

And their whole video/presentation mostly consisted on using the trillion dollars to re-do the education system.  (They were from Baltimore and the education system there is in some desperate need of some repair)

After the video there was a Q and A session with the kids.
And this is when it got awkward.

The room was filled with middle class white individuals who were there with their own political agenda.
They didn’t ask questions. They gave 5 minute long speeches that had a closed ended question at the end.

These “adults” wanted to know what these kids were going to do about; issues in Africa, preventing future wars, and one person even asked if they were going to try to get DC a representative in congress…. Seriously? 
These kids don’t even live in dc and are not old enough to vore.

It was just an awkward situation to witness. 

And I'm these HS students had an amazing day.  They won an awards, got to go to John Kerry’s office, were offered internships after they graduated, and got to travel all around dc.  and these “adults” only cared about their own agenda.

Conclusion: next time I’m going to avoid these type of events.

Also,  this was at Bus Boys and Poets which is an amazing place within itself.... they have all sorts of events like; weekly poetry slams, documentary screenings, book signings, etc …. I will not hold this event against a Bus Boy and Poets normal sponsored event.

** the contest also looked like it had a lot of perks and looks really exciting. (You can see the link here) and I’m sure the contest itself is great.  I just feel bad for this one aspect of the contest.  

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Solo film screening

Day 15: Bloombars film screening.
FreeinDC references this organization at least once a week –if not more- and I decided since there was nothing else going on Tuesday that I would head to their “donation based” movie event.  I did my typical walk by first and checked out the place.  It was a small location and a place I’ve walked by lots before. (Sometimes in the fall they would open their doors and have dance/yoga stuff going on.)

I walked in up to the door right before 7:30 and the door was locked and as quickly as I was going to turn away I noticed that someone came up to unlock the door. 
I walk in and I saw a bunch of empty chairs.
I was literally the only person in the room besides the two volunteers putting on this event.
 
To make this clear: I was the only person there that wasn’t associated with the organization. 

They restarted the movie for me, gave me some popcorn, orange juice, flyers, and I felt obligated to leave a 4 dollar donation (even though it stated that 8-10 was the average donation, I thought that was a little much.
About 15 mins into the film another individual shows up and I was no longer alone.  Yippy!
The film was interesting and whatnot… I’m  not sure if it was worth my 4 dollars, but I’m still glad I can say I’ve gone to a film screening where I was one of the only people there. 

Afterwards they decided it was completely necessary to discuss the film as a group. 
And to restate for those you aren’t following along.  It was me, the two volunteers, and the guy who showed up late… 4 people.
We discussed the film.  Lots of “what’s your opinion?” “can you relate to the film? "whats your feelings on brands like forever 21?" “invite your friends next time!

A clip of the film: Made In LA


Monday, February 21, 2011

DC scavenger hunt

Day 13: Scavenger Hunt
The American Red Cross hosted a Scavenger Hunt last Sunday to advertise their Oscar Night event.  Online the event stated it would go from 2-5:00 We learned later that this was a lie, it started at 2:30 and they told us it would end at 4:30.  (The 4:30 was also a lie, but that vent will come later on.)

Allison and I were pretty cocky before we started, mostly b/c
1) We are young
2) We generally walk everywhere
3) Allison has a Smartphone

The first clue was super easy:              
At this location, iconic treasures and artifacts took on a life of their own in this 2009 movie.
Duh- Night at the Museum.  National History Museum
At this point I was loving my knowledge of children movies.

Next Clue:
A real document significant to or country’s history featured in a 2004 film is housed in this building and this location is also featured in an Academy Award winning film starring Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman about two journalist investigating the Watergate Scandal for the Washington Post.
Duh- National Archives

Next:
This location is where Forrest reunited with Jenny, where John and Jeremy sit to discuss whether they are too old to be crashing weddings, and where Frank and Lily eat ice cream after Frank successfully saves the life of a president.
Duh- the reflecting pool, Lincoln Memorial.
This was the first time we saw someone get in to a taxi.  I suppose for this mom and son combo the hike up the mall was a little too much.

Next:
On June 16, 1972, a security guard at this location discovered a piece of tape on the lock of the door that led to the National Democratic Headquarters. That simple act brought down a President, a story told in this movie.
Duh- Watergate
At this point we were positive that we would be the first to finish who would have walked the whole way.

Next:
The film features Clint Eastwood as a Secret Service agent who chases after a would-be presidential assassin.
Ummm… wtf?
They gave us a clue that it was a restaurant.
Ummm…. Wtf?
The two girls in front of us got in a taxi.

And we literally had no idea where we were heading.
Allison got out her smart phone and we could only come up with the name of the movie.  And I texted everyone in my phone who I thought knew anything about Clint Eastwood movies.  I only got one response.
My friend Ed told me to go to the “Hey Adam” hotel.  We walked in that direction and saw no one wearing the Red Cross jacket.  We quickly decided that it must have been Old Ebbitt Grill and heads in that direction… but still no Red Cross jacket. 

We spend the next 15 mins wondering around the White House without seeing anyone.  At about 4:13 we decided that we would just go to the beginning and end location to figure out where the correct location was. 

We walked up and asked and their response was “The White House.” my response was “that’s not a restaurant” and all smug they stated that “oh, that one is the Old Ebbitt Grill and there was one more clue after that
We stated “but we went to the Old Ebbitt Grill!”  There response was yet another smug response stating that they pulled everyone in at 4… our only response was “wtf, you said we had until 4:30
Needless to say we were bitter and tired.

Not to mention that we walked all over DC but we didn’t have time to take any pictures…I took one photo.  one photo that won't upload right now. 

And to visuals how far we walked, I googled mapped it for you all.
it says we walked 7.6 miles and that it should take 2 hours and 32 mins... I don't know if I believe that, but I'm not going to argue with google maps.

And the winners are posted on their website and I’m pretty sure I didn’t see this family at the start. 

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Lion Cubs

Doing something every day is really taking a lot out of me.
First off I can’t tell you the last time I had time to do my laundry and b/c of this I’ve had to wear dresses to work all week… I have no idea what I’m going to wear tomorrow.
Secondly I have no time to blog
Thirdly I really want to put up pics of the lion cubs from the zoo on Monday.  But I feel like I can’t because I haven’t posted about the scavenger hunt I went to on Sunday.
…. But who cares.  I’m posting the pics.
So this is day 14.  And day 13 will be posted later. 

Day 14: Lion Cubs



Yeah, I know super cute!

On Monday it was perfect zoo weather and I looked up when was the best time to see them -fyi: they come out every day at about 12:30- I was prepared with my camera and everything. 

i love the zoo 

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Drink Specials

Day 11 and 12: Miller Lite Specials
editor note: in college I was too good to drink Miller Lite.  Why would I drink Miller Lite when Bud Light cost the same? but it seems that Miller Lite is the only beer here that has specials. It's weird sometimes you can find a can of PBR that cost more than a bottle of Miller. 

On Friday I decided my thing was going to be happy hours with my coworkers.
Sure, I had Friday off and it isn’t a real exciting “event” but I can count the amount of times I’ve done happy hour on one hand.  And a couple of week’s back we went out after work for a coworker’s birthday, had a good time, and decided to do it again. 
After a week of debate we decided on  Buffalo Billiards in Dupont Circle.  My knowledge of Dupont Circle is literally none.  I don’t live close to the area and I live right by Adams Morgan –if I was going to go to a bar by myself it would be one close to where I live, not a 15 min walk away

On Friday people started showing up around 6:30, and by that time I was already on my 2nd HH Miller Lite and already consumed half of my cheesy fries.  Yuuummm. 

All and all it was a good night.  We played pool, talked about work eye candy, drank, ate, wondered around, and eventually departed ways.  
around 9 Allison and I left and headed over to Columbia Station in Adams Morgan (and I already expressed how much I love their nightly free jazz)

There I had my first “small town DC” experience.  We ran into a guy who use to work with Allison and who I met in September.  (he has an amazing cool job and basically plays on social media sites all day.  You can see his twitter here.) 
We enjoyed a glass of wine and the amazing jazz they have. 
After about an hour we decided to head home. - I came to the conclusion that the wine made us ridiculously tired-

That night when I woke up 4am.  I decided drinking wine after a good handful of beers is not a good idea. 

Anti-Valentine’s day bar event.

In my 28things fashion I decided to hit up the Washington post events page to see what was going on Saturday.  I came across a bar event that mentioned something about a giant shredder to shred old love letters.  And I thought.  Hell Yes! This sound like an awesome event!

The bar -bottom line- was located next to a bunch of business in the Farrgut West area and was right next to a random bar that had intense lights, a line to get in, and a bunch of girls not wearing coats and pants waiting to get in.  (not to mention that the traffic in this area was crazy)  
When we arrived I didn’t see a gigantic shredder that was advertised –but I also didn’t ask- but they did have 2.50 bottles of Miller Lite and you could win a trip to Lake Tahoe.
The crowd itself was interesting and was this weird mix of old and young people.  Some people might describe it as a townie bar, but it was in the middle of a business district… so that doesn’t really make sense.
But by the end of the night I had fun.  They only charged me for 4 Miller Lites and they were sending around a sheet of paper where you could diss your ex…. This was awesome all by itself.

On our walk back home we wondered into a new bar/restaurant called “Fiesta.”  I automatically thought of college and Fiesta Mexico with their cheap margaritas.
This place was not as cool and their margaritas tasted like cheap margarita mix.
I do not think I'll be going back to "Fiesta" anytime soon. 

Monday, February 14, 2011

Film: Raja

Day 10:   North Africa Film Festival.
The African Art Museum is hosting a weekly film festival where every Thursday they show a different North African Film, this past week was “Raja”
When I arrived I realized that I should have come right after work. 
1) the front seats are the best, thanks to the subtitles and 
2) it seemed that they handed out movie theater candy early on. 
I sat next to an older gentleman unaware of the content of the film. 

Yeah, a whole film of awkward sexual tension

Conclusion: I like films, I like discussions about films, I like subtitles.

I don’t like being uncomfortable during a film.
(it could have been worse.  I could have been watching Black Swan with my dad) 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Holocaust Museum Lecture

Day 9: Holocaust Museum
Wednesday was the annual J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Annual Lecture at the USHMM.  These are generally events I love to attend.  Mostly b/c it is a topic that I’m actually interested in and I have some previous knowledge about what they are talking about to know what is important to take from the lecture.
And I’m always impressed by whoever the museum gets to talk at these lectures.  This specific event was about Babi Yar: Site of Mass Murder, with presenter Dr. Karel C. Berkhoff.  His background is just intense – you can read his bio here- I'm always amazed by people who have a vast knowledge about one topic… especially a topic that is a forgotten part of holocaust history.

The lecture itself was depressing, but in an uplifting informative type of way.  if that makes any sense- it definitely left me with a type of feeling of being glad that I now know more about this topic. 

And unlike the other events I've attended there weren’t any annoying individuals on their cell phones.  (Or perhaps I wasn’t paying attention to other people)

And..... there was a reception afterwards!  This meant free wine and desserts. –which is weird itself considering that topic matter and the fact that we were at the holocaust museum-  but as a individual living on a budget I had no problem having a free glass of wine and a couple of bit sized brownies. 

I was also very impressed with the good mix of old and young people who showed up.  Sure I recognized a good handful of them who actually work/intern/volunteer at the museum but there were young people who I didn’t recognize.  So way to go young DC folks for attending a depressing event.