Sunday, August 26, 2007


My first work trip took me to Reno Nevada, and it was entertaining from start to finish. When we were leaving Seattle we actually walked the tarmac to get on a propeller plane and when we got on board there was a woman on the WRONG PLANE. It was like a movie except she got off before the plane took off. When you board from the tarmac there were several flights all leaving at the same time and apparently this woman couldn't read the signs directing her to Spokane. When you leave from the tarmac it usually means a small plane... you'd be right. It was an 80 seat propeller plane and this was easily the longest flight on a propeller plane for me. It was everything you would expect too - loud, vibrating, and low flying. The low flying part was particularly neat because we flew exceptionally close to Mt. Rainer.

Reno itself is about 500,000 people. Beyond the fact there is gambling Reno is a pretty normal town. A few big casino's that reminded me of downtown Vegas and that was really the only noteworthy thing. I think people go to Reno because they don't want the excitement of Vegas... i.e. old people. The most recent song we heard at the casino was basically 1995 and two conventions were being held there at the same time. The Kiwanis and American Legion probably increased the average age of the town by 3 years. I wonder how many people die in a casino's a year?

On Thursday night we did what we could to have fun. Gambled a little and found a bar in our hotel that wasn't awful. It did treat me to several firsts. I saw a dance off - no lie - people were taking turns dancing and trying to top each others moves. The other bizarre thing was the guy playing spoons. During the course of one of the dance-offs a guy pulled spoons out and started playing like he was in a music video. Easily the highlight of the trip.

I did get to eat my first In-n-Out burger. They were good burgers, especially for a chain, but it wasn't quite as great as I'd been expecting. It was anti-climactic because it had been hyped up mercilessly.

If you're bored this website might make you laugh.

Gary Gaetti

Monday, August 20, 2007

Not Funny Anymore

Hempfest is officially over. There are now a large number of fairly thoroughly dishelved people hanging around Seattle (more than usual at least) panhandling/begging to get home. Attention stoners - save enough money to get home from Hempfest. They're like an annual locust - a plague on the city after the largest "protest-ival" is over. I'm not sure what bothers me more, the little kids in strollers at Hempfest or the leftover stoners.

This a sample of the free stuff you could find at Hempfest. Actually, you could barely avoid people jamming crap like this in your hand. On the way in I was offered a lei of pot leaves and mardi gras beads etc. A guy was yelling "Who wants stoner bling!" I forgot to mention the large number of ferret owners running around as well - apparently ferrets love Hempfest too.

Fire alarms have a special place in my memory as things that were both amusing and absurd. Halloween of 1998 Schroeder Hall had 3 fire alarms in one night. A bunch of us were awake watching Halloween horror movies and playing video games for most of the night so having to go outside and watch people complain was sort of humorous. Nearly 10 years later it's not funny anymore. At 2:30am I was blasted awake by the ear piercing shriek of a fire alarm. This was worse than any alarm in college and there would be no ignoring it. After maybe 10 minutes it was decided there was no fire and it was safe to go inside. I'm going to blame it on a stoner who somehow got into the building and pulled the alarm.

I should have offered to put the fire out with my Hemp Ice Tea. It really does contain "hemp seed syrup" whatever that is. I can't imagine how gross that must taste.

Sunday, August 19, 2007


Entourage is the only reason I have HBO anymore. I spend an insane amount on cable because Millenium Digital Cable sucks (a different topic) but HBO only has a few shows worth watching and the movies they are playing aren't all that great. That being said Entourage is one of the better shows on TV right now.

This weekend was the opening of the movie Superbad. It wasn't the best movie I've ever seen but it was a lot better than I expected. I might not have been as funny as I expected but the plot was so much better than I anticipated it more than made up for it. The movie was a cross between American Graffiti, Dazed and Confused, and American Pie. It takes place over a 24 hour period and revolves around getting alcohol for a party and some of the random things that can only happen in a movie. The language is pretty realistic, which is to say it is vulgar and revolves around sex and various things related to it.

The "high" point of the weekend however is not related to either Superbad or Entourage. A few blocks from my apartment the 16th annual Hempfest was held over the weekend. The sheer size of this thing blew me away. It is a free event that draws nearly 150,000 people over two days. There were about 100 pipe or water pipe (don't say Bong!) vendors at the event and pretty much every stoner stereotype you can think of. Bob Marley shirts, tie dye everything, airbrushed stuff, hemp clothes/apparel everywhere and of course random people selling stickers. There were 5 stages going at different parts of the park. They weren't huge stages but they were big enough draw crowds of people. One appeared to be playing rock/metal, one was hip hop, one was jam band, one was techno/electronic, and lastly one was a policy stage where speakers were debating the various problems and inconsistencies with the current drug policy in America. I used to think that Summerfest was the best people watching I had ever seen but having been to an event about the size of Summerfest but filled with stoners was highly entertaining. Very funny stuff. I'm linking to the Seattle Post Intelligencer since they take better pictures than me.


The trip to Reno happens on Wednesday of this week. I've never been to Reno so that should be fun even if it is for work. There should be plenty of spare time and we're staying in the best casino in Reno I guess. I think it'll we be entertaining enough.

I just saw an ad for something called Mirapex. It's a drug that combats restless leg syndrome, whatever that is, but one of the potential side effects (beyond the normal) is a increased desire to gamble. What the heck is this drug doing?

Thursday, August 16, 2007

UW Football

My tickets to UW football arrived this week and it was a fairly underwhelming moment. It's hard to get excited about a school if didn't grow up there or grow to school there. I figure after a few games I'll be more interesting in how these things turn out.

I'm going to see Van Helen in Portland in Decemember. David Lee Roth is back at the helm so it should be a good time provided the members haven't killed each other by the time they get here. This must be the year of the super reunion - The Police, Van Halen, and Smashing Pumpkins. I can only hope for Soundgarden to reunite. Are they all alive even?

If you want to see a town get upset about sports come to Seattle. Nothing quite like having one of your teams bought by an out of town owner (the Sonics and oil billionaires from Oklahoma) and then basically getting lied to about keeping the team in town. It made a lot of people angry but we'll see what they do to keep the team here. Right now Seattle has taken tax hikes for two other stadiums and are very skittish about funding a third stadium. Should be an interesting and vocal couple of years. I hope they keep the Sonics in town it would be a shame to lose them.

Superbad opens this weekend. I'm thinking of a hilarious cross between American Pie and Dazed and Confused. If it is half as funny as I'm expecting it will be a great movie. "We could be that mistake!"

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Hemp Fest

The weather today was pretty perfect so I went down to the Waterfront park by my apartment. Myrtle Edwards park is right on Puget Sound and is next to some railroad tracks. It's a pretty neat park because it's kind of isolated because of the water and tracks there are only two entrances to the park. I took some reading material and went out to read and watch the sunset. Uneventful for the most except for the festival that is apparently coming up next weekend. Hemp Fest is being held next weekend and the planners were having some sort of rally not too far from where I was reading. I didn't know if they were serious when they started a gimme a "h - e - m - p" what's that spell? HEMP! Too funny.

The days of my probable trip to Wisconsin are looking like October for sure with the specific days still to be decided. It would nice if it would during Midnight Madness but I'll settle for just making a visit. Hopefully the meeting falls so I could stay the weekend.

This is Week 2 of the 201 POS voting.

I'm particularly amused the inclusion of Chris Howser. (I have no idea what other Chris H that would be) I can't fathom what would have happened during the week to get Chris Howser on the list but I think it's a pretty safe bet we threw a party that weekend. I'm guessing Ronnie T must have DJ'd the party to win the MVP award and I remember voting for Patrick Nelson but for what eludes me. Any time you can mention the closet dweller Chris Graczyk you know it must have been a good party.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Smashing Pumpkins

I'm not sure how I feel about the reunion of Smashing Pumpkins but I'm going to see them in 6 weeks at Endfest. The big rock station out here, 107.7 The End, puts on a big end of Summer show called Endfest Sept 22nd this year. Sadly enough that is the same weekend as the Portland Pirate festival so I'm not going to Portland this year sadly enough. I'm still not sure if 1/2 of the Pumpkins qualify but I'm certainly going to go watch them.

Reno is 2 weeks should be pretty fun but I'm even more excited for a trip in October to Wisconsin to meet with a vendor there. The details are still be worked out be if the meeting happens on a Monday or Friday I could stay the weekend. Once I get the details figured out I'll be letting everybody now. In my dream scenario it would be the weekend of midnight madness but I won't get my hopes up too high. It'll probably end up being a Wednesday or something.

The best show on TV - The Office - is starting up again soon and it can't come soon enough for me. I'm watching a rerun right now and laughing out loud even when I know exactly what's coming, it might even get funnier. Even better is there is a girl at work who sits on an exercise ball and, well, every time I walk by I think of this clip.

Exercise Ball

I got my 3rd or 4th electric bill so I guess that means I really live in Seattle. Since I really live in here now I think it's about time I get a Washington State drivers license. It's not a big deal to me but it going to make things seem much more permanent. I have to get Washington plates soon too. That's gonna suck because I'm sure it won't be cheap.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Slow week

Nothing of real note happened this week. I went to a Mariner game on Tuesday night and they got rocked so it wasn't worth mentioning really. It got me thinking of strange thing I've seen at games before. I think the wildest thing I've seen at a game is somebody getting called out on an appeal. I guess it might not be wild but it certainly seems pretty rare.

I have the days of the trip to Reno Nevada confirmed as well. We fly out on Wed the 22nd and fly back on Friday afternoon. I've never been to Reno before so it should be a fun time. I guess the hotel Amazon books people in is the best casino in Reno... but I'm not sure what that means exactly. The best casino in Reno is probably less noteworthy than an average casino in Vegas.

I've spend the last couple of days using my Amazon prime status to buy some movies and books. Most recently I watched a Russian movie called Nightwatch, a Russian movie with subtitles about a battle between good and evil. Pretty solid and certainly worth watching. I've also been reading a book on Zombie defense and a book on how to be an evil villian. You can never be too prepared for Zombies.

The final thing of this post involves my move. When I moved out here I unearthed some different notebooks from college - most notably my green notebook. My green notebook contained notes from marketing 140 and Poly Sci 165 or 167 I think, (International Organization) but it also contained the ultimate in 201 Renee Row events. I have found the P.O.S. voting scorecard. P.O.S. does not stand for Point of Sale - it stands for Piece of Sh!t voting. Every week for a period of almost two months we, the members of 201, took a vote on who was the biggest POS during the course of the week. The first vote took place on 9/26/1999 and here are the official results.

This proved to be more of a pain to post than I ever thought. Virgin Heat is Brian Sopcich and the list only contains first names - Bill I assume that would be Bill Wooten and not Bill Hansen. I wish we would have kept more detailed records of the events that caused a person to be #1 for a particular week.

While I screwed around trying to post the voting in a coherent fashion I watched part of the Shawshank Redemption for about the 40th time. It never fails to suck me in when I find it on TV. The list of movies I have to watch every time I find them are few but Shawshank is pretty high on the list.