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Apr 5th, 2014 - 11:22 pm - Restoration Hardware
BGSU
Good evening Lj readers,

how are things? Here they have been mildly bustling.

Here are today's shades of beige :

* From the desk of Geoff

Things have been well here. A while ago, my parents nicely gave me my dad's old cell phone, as he had a newer one. This phone is an upgrade from my current "almost smart" phone, a pay-as-you-go one I got from Tracfone which was only $10 but did indeed come with no contract, over 1,000 preloaded minutes and some basic features such as a 1.3 mb camera and a game or two. The family hopes to fold everything into one shared account, which my sister is nicely able to get via a discount (I believe via her husband Nathan, who is in the military). So soon I should have a fancier phone with unlimited text and calling. Woo!

* eBooks

Courtesy the Westerville library (one of the few 'independent' libraries left here in Columbus, as some other suburb ones were just recently folded into the city's collective) I was able to take advantage of yet another great feature they have (in addition to a computer lab, free access to consumerreports.com and a number of other things) : digital books! You can 'borrow' materials and have them put on your Kindle (, as I have) and / or etc. I am mildly amused, if I understand the system correctly, that there is a limit as to how many digital copies the library can 'lend' out of any one given item, as digital copies of things are very easy to create. I suppose some sort of weird supply-and-demand illusion might be maintained for certain titles.

* Federal updates

Tax season is winding to a close here in a few days. I myself have already filed of course, and did indeed get a refund from both the state and federal. My state already came ($60) ; I hope to use it to buy two grid-like pieces of furniture into which I can hold my clothes. I've always keep my outfits in perfectly-good dressers ; I just thought I would try something new.
March 31st (a few days ago) marked the deadline for the new health care law registrants to be enrolled, something I myself did recently as well. Due to the nature of my job position, I was eligible for it. Part of the new law expanded those who could avail themselves to Medicaid, and I happen to fall into that group. Medicaid is, of course, different from Medicare, the program designed more so for those who have retired. Now I have to pick out a plan!

* The "end" of an era, or maybe not

Years ago, when I first attended college (Bowling Green State University), I knew I liked guys. I met a boy in the school's rec center there, and I had some 'adult fun' for the first time. The environment of the (huge!) locker rooms there easily availed themselves to exactly this kind of behaviour, from a dry steam room overlooking the open showers to several usually-empty back corners to a restroom one level down with its own shower and a lock on the door. While many other schools (from OSU to Wright State) also had very similar setups, over the years every one of them redid or eliminated large portions of it - except BGSU. The university's building was not particularly antique, unclean or anything else - just increasingly rare.
Right now, the university is redoing most of the entire facility. The website delineates fundraising and the like, and lists everything that is currently closed due to construction (which is, essentially, everything lol). Certainly it's just a random building and if the new version is completely different, then such is life ~ . In any case, a real artifact from an earlier age, as it were.
I visited this past week for a semi-annual arts board meeting, and prior to the event took a quick spin around at what small amount was open. In what could be appropriate symbolism, the only restroom open was the same one in the basement where I had met one of the first (of just a few) guys I had adult fun with.

* Misc. other

Some other small things, for which I am thankful : being able to see my parents (at the outlet mall) and my friend Eric (in BG) all in a few days! alternate sources of internet (as my neighbor's wifi is "acting up", as it were). Howard Cruse's Wendel All Together comic series. my roomie Graham catching up on his sleep :) . grated Italian cheeses.

Okay. Have a good night!

Take care,
* Geoff
Mar 17th, 2014 - 01:17 am - Remove shell
random image 9 - Twilight
Good evening Lj readers,

how are things? Here they have been encouraging.

Here are the good moments of the day :

* From the desk of Geoff

Things have been well here. I've been slowly using up the many nice birthday offers I got from various companies via email (I just finished a day or two ago). Lots of great things! Some store credits, coupons and free items / snacks. My last one for this year was a coupon to Aveda - I picked out a complimentary spray (you pick from a series of oils, and they mix it into a base for you).
Although I should use it very slowly, I recently found two wine varietals I had never tried before - one at Trader Joe's (Salice Salentino) and a douro (doc) from, of all places, Aldi's (although indeed, TJ's and Aldi's are essentially owned by the same family). Salice Salentino is a red Italian wine made from local grapes varietals, and Douro is from Portugal and made the same way (from their local grapes). Red wines are good with beans, and also potatoes so they should be good with which to cook as well.

* Peanut shop (part 1 of 2)

This past Friday I headed out to a small shop in the north part of downtown Columbus for which I had visited once or twice. After 89 years (including 65-ish at that location), an old Planter's peanut shop (one of 300-ish or so, at one point) is moving to a new location. I didn't have any particular memories from there, although I had visited once or twice and purchased filberts, a cousin to peanuts, from them. A store from an earlier era ; they had a few unique things including a "Mr. Peanut", some scales for which to measure, older tins and even a Now Serving sign, which was, indeed, electric. Once owned by Planters, they were bought by Standard Brands, which was bought by Nabisco, which was bought by RJ Reynolds, who 'gave' it to Kraft. Good luck with the move!

* Peanut shop (part 2 of 2)



For two more pictures, one may click on the image above then click the right-hand arrow at the top right of the frame.

* Movies

Courtesy the local library, I was able to recently see some good movies, including Dallas Buyers Club (a fictitious account of real events ; it coincidentally came in right before the Oscars were on), The Hunger Games (part 2) ('game' is not the word for the bleak event in this future society ; a simple story but with a large budget to explain everything), The Returned (an excellent 8-part French series on which the new ABC show, Resurrected, is vaguely based. Beautiful and bleak - one of my random discoveries and a noteworthy series of the year) and The Lego Movie (this theatre screening courtesy a local small business promotion). The Lego Movie is completely wonderful - a sequel is already planned to be released in 2017.

* Misc. other

Some other small things, for which I am thankful : a 'triple points' promotion at World Market recently, for which I was nicely able to take advantage. people being responsible for the actions they do. a flannel shirt I had gotten (without trying on) from a local thrift store fitting, and looking good! being able to cycle some more in the warming (pre-)spring weather. a 50% off coupon to a fancy Spanish restaurant (Barcelona) for which I hope to visit this month.

Okay. Have a good night!

Take care,
* Geoff
Feb 27th, 2014 - 02:09 pm - Whats brewing
Starbucks Clover
Good afternoon Lj readers,

how are things? Here they have been re-framed.

Here is the new launch of the day :

* From the desk(top) of Geoff

Things have been well here. I've been doing some 'winter cleaning' in my bedroom and have rearranged some furniture in it also. I did experiment with having my bed in the center of the room ; that is to say having just the backboard touching a wall, however I have since moved it to a corner again (a common place for it!). I had a chance to go through my closet as well and have a laundry basket of clothes for Good Will.
A while ago I ran into an old friend (Keith) on Yahoo IM (Keith isn't on Facebook). Both he and I figured out how to let the messenger run our built-into-the-computer cameras, and : I was able to 'video chat' with him! How about that. We didn't have a microphone, but he was able to show me his new bedroom and sheets. Very neat. It's like I'm living in the not-too-distant-future of 8 years ago, lol.

* Starbucks (part 1 of 2)

My roomie / boyfriend Graham recently passed along that (, eventually) Columbus should be getting a Starbucks with a Clover machine in it (a machine that the company essentially uses to brew rare coffees - it is unlikely the machine itself is special, but the store which has it gets in rare and limited edition blends). As Ohio has none that was nice news.
My gift card collection from the company is coming along (I have 51 cards now). A newer card (see below) was released in small numbers at select stores and is pretty. I hope to eventually hang the holders I have the cards in as sort of 'columns' on the wall.

* Starbucks (part 2 of 2)



Future (as of this writing) card designs include a black-logo'ed one and a spring flowers pattern.

* An Object of Beauty

Courtesy work, I was able to recently read this particular novel. Written by the multi-talented Steve Martin (actor, musician etc). AOOB tells the tale of (Lacey's friend telling the tale of) Lacey, an art student who works at auction house Sotheby's in the 1990's and who decides to see how successful she can be in the art world. What starts off as a 'city romance' sort of tale winds into more adult places as the narration pulls back from just her story to reveal how the art world works and how... driven one can get towards success within its field.
Included in the book are little reprints of (real life) pieces discussed therein. While a work of fiction, several of the business dealings alluded to in the story are likely to be very close to reality. Mr. Martin is an art collector in real life and likely has a good background from which to draw. While the main character may be morally... unusual, the passion for art many of the characters in the book feel is, as always, inspirational. Recommended as a, dare I say, surprisingly good read!

* Misc. other

Some other small things, for which I am thankful : delicious lunches at local Thai place Basil. Much of the snow finally melting from the driveway (, and elsewhere!). changing up the order of my exercise routine. an early gift of a 2014 ticket to the Pride event ( - a dogtag) here in Ohio from my Pride Committee friend Scott. a good "$5 for $10" deal to Whole Foods that Groupon recently offered.

Okay. Have a good night!

Take care,
* Geoff
Feb 6th, 2014 - 12:39 am - A river of amazement
Auryn
Good evening Lj readers,

how are things? Here they have been somewhat masculine.

Here are the Hollister purchases of the day :

* From the desk of Geoff

Things have been well here. On the way back from a flight to Utah to see my sister, brother-in-law and ("new!") niece Emily, I read a few books including a Barnaby compilation by Crockett Johnson, best known for writing children's book Harold and the Purple Crayon. Unbeknownst to me, he also produced a comic for a number of years! Barnaby is a fascinating, mostly-unknown creation : a Harold and the Purple Crayon-esque boy (named Barnaby) meets a flightly, cigar-smoking fairy godfather (, really) whom only he and a few others can see (despite, the author's notes helpfully explaining, him eventually getting elected to congress). This fairy godfather creates wishes and, along with nice neighbor girl Jane and a talking dog, get into all sorts of crazy but linear / plot progressive adventures. A real one-of-a-kind piece of literature.

* Fringe, season 5

I recently finished watching the fifth and final season of TV show Fringe (one of my "new classics"). Each of the five seasons of the series appears to be different than the previous (a tactic HBO's The Wire employed during its run, as well). The final season begins, as many do, by 'dropping the view in' to a new scenario with little plot points. In this case we are in the future, where "Observers", last seen in previous seasons, have returned with an intent of taking over the planet. As always in the series, the science and technology are disturbingly plausible and are often combined in ominous ways. I marveled at the last episode ; one with a bit of action but little "universal" winding down. We are reminded we are seeing moments in others' lives, and what is noteworthy to them may mean little to us. It is refreshing to see a series end on a quiet, specific note and not a cliffhanger or generic reunion, as it were.

* Tony's birthday

The month of February is one in which many people I know happen to have birthdays - my teacher friend Tony being among them. His bf Ryan planned a fun idea - inviting 16 or so people over for a surprise party, while 2 other friends kept Tony out of the house for, literally, 6+ hours - going everywhere from a bar to a movie! At 8 pm, we all grew silent on the 2nd story of the bi-level that is their house. Tony, entering, at first thought he was being robbed - seeing all of the 'weird boxes' at the top of the steps which were, in fact, gifts. Then we said "Surprise!" Good times. A Facebook video exists of the exact moment, however I am unsure if one can link directly to it. Editor's note : I checked, but alas to no avail ~ . But it's all good.

* My birthday

The next day (Sunday) was my birthday. An "exciting" one - my 40th! I went to a pizza place downtown called Z Pizza, which is a west-coast-based chain slowly moving east. My friends Scott, John, John's bf Phillip and college friend Cameron joined me. I hadn't seen Cam in a bit! (although indeed, I did in fact see him the night before at Tony's party, heh). C bought me a great gift - a pre-digital-camera picture taken during college of me laughing and tossing a ball up in the air. The picture perfectly captured the ball - mid-air! He even framed it.
Afterwards we walked essentially across the street to a tea salon I like called Zen Cha (Cam headed off - he had a Super Bowl (also happening that day) party for which to prep). As a "thank you" for people coming out, I bought everyone tea. Having tea with friends in a tranquil place is always a nice way to spend a moment in one's life :) .

* Misc. other

Some other small things, for which I am thankful : hashtag #5HT (QKellie :D). a lovely 'birthday dinner' my bf cooked me. having a slow day at work. wonderful well-wishes and gifts from people for my actual birthday (I have something like $40 in Starbucks store credit now. woo!). finding flannel, which I essentially last wore when it was 'originally' popular (e.g. "1995-ish") into which I actually fit without it being too big.

Okay. Have a good night!

Take care,
* Geoff
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