Category Archives: Travel

The Passion Of David Naylor

I would just like to thank David Naylor for confirming (against my will) that I find no enjoyment in kissing another man. God damn Brits.

I think it might be the only time in my life that my tongue has touched another man’s tongue. :) Tastes a bit like a buffalo burger. Blah…

Shoemoney avenged this deed by beaten him down at thumb wrestling. Oh wait, I think that was before…

(I ripped off the name of this post from Shoemoney, but it seemed the name was a bit more appropriate for my entry. heh)

Hilton In Chicago… The Good, The Bad & The Weird

The good part about the Hilton in Chicago is that it has nice marble floors. The bad part is this place has Internet that costs $35 for 5 hours of use, and then when you buy it, it doesn’t work anyway, so in reality this hotel has “Internet” that doesn’t work for a cost that works out to $168 per day. And by “not work”, I mean it actually doesn’t work (for about 3 days now).

The weird part of the Hilton is the 5th floor… Somehow Vanessa Fox ended up on the 5th floor (not really sure how that happened) and said it was weird. So of course we (Randfish, Jen, Shoemoney’s sister [hah] and myself) had to go (the elevators don’t go to the 5th floor, so we had to take the stairs)… and yes, it was indeed weird and semi-abandoned (all the lights where on, and room doors were open, but the rooms were kind of tore up). Some others (I wasn’t involved in this) went up there and found out that the mini-bars were all stocked and unlocked, so I guess for some people that’s a good thing about the Hilton (free snacks and alcohol).

Either way, all the good and weird stuff isn’t enough to outweigh the fact that this stupid hotel doesn’t have Internet that works.

Chargers, Bears, & Colts…

These are the three teams tied for the best record in the NFL (10-2). I went to the Bears/Viking game at Soldier Field in Chicago this morning, and uhm… it was COLD. Chicago in general is f’ing cold and I don’t know why anyone would willingly live here. :) Did I mention it’s cold?

Anyway, the Chargers beat the Bills today in Buffalo (LT scored 2 more touchdowns). Merriman was back after his 4 game steroid suspension and had 2 sacks and 2 forced fumbles.

The Colts lost today too, which is really nice because now the Chargers are tied for the best record in the league (not sure who holds the tiebreaker between the Colts and Chargers for home field advantage in the payoffs).

Back to the Bears game… the Bears defense is scary good, their quarterback threw 3 interceptions and had a passer rating of 1.3 (no joke), and they still won thanks to their defense.

Chargers vs. Bears in the Super Bowl? :)

Second Best Thing About Vegas

When you are bored in the airport on a layover on the way to Chicago, you can win $2,000 on a $5 bet. :)

I played a total of $20 (I played 6 total hands for $5 each, winning my first hand also) on video poker with my last $5 and hit 4 2s and an ace on “Dues’ Wild Poker”. The only hand that would have paid more would have been a royal flush for $4,000.

Las Vegas -> San Diego -> Phoenix -> San Diego

That is the route I took to get home from Pubcon in Las Vegas. It was a very odd route by the airline. Got on a plane in Vegas that was a direct flight to San Diego (and supposed to get to San Diego at 1:05 am this morning). Circled around San Diego for about 30 minutes, then we flew (and landed in) Phoenix, Arizona (another state), that way I could catch an 8:30 am flight to San Diego from Phoenix. :) Fun!

(too much fog in San Diego to land)

Update

Just as a FYI, if you turn on your cell phone in-flight, the plane does not drop out of the sky. I turned on my phone so I could text message my ride that we weren’t landing, and to go home, and it didn’t crash the plane (and the text got through fine too).

Update 2

I spliced together the two actual route maps that Brian posted in a comment. A very odd route to get from Las Vegas to Phoenix… “Oh, let’s go check out San Diego before we go to Arizona…” heh

Anti-Semitic Poker Dealer At Binions

Played some poker tonight (this morning?), and we had George, a closet anti-semitic poker dealer for his 30 minute shift. George really liked us (especially Dax)… or not… it was hard to read his true feelings about us. :)

Hopefully someone will post the illegal pictures we took of a “Nevada gaming device”.

Update

I almost forgot one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen while playing poker… (comedy supplied by Dave).

Dave: {whispering to me} Does a 4 of a kind beat a flush?
Me: Yes.
Dave: {turning back to table} Okay, I’m all in.

Update 2

Man, it’s all starting to come back to me… (more comedy supplied by Jen). Cell phone text messages (none left out)…

Jen: (10:19 pm) Where u
Me: on way to binions
Jen: (12:24 am) Where u
Me: at binions
Jen: (1:51 am) Where u
Me: at binions, in poker room

Hugh Hefner Suite

Yahoo Publisher Network hosted the best party at Pubcon (at least of the ones I went to). They threw it in the Hugh Hefner Sky Villa at the Palms (it’s a 9,000 square foot, $40,000/night “room”) on Wednesday night.

Microsoft threw a party in the Kingpin Suite Thursday night, but I decided that going to see Borat and playing poker afterwards would be more fun than hanging out with Microsoft people (I’m sure they are nice people and all, I just don’t perceive Microsoft people as a barrel of monkey fun). :)

UFC 64

I went to Vegas this weekend for UFC 64 at Mandalay Bay. I’ve never been to a UFC fight before, but man they are bloody. This is a picture of the second to last match tonight. Uhm, can I have some blood please? Thanks.

(The guy being picked up actually started with white shorts… no joke)

Local Party In San Jose

Okay, we are back in San Jose now since our flight home leaves in the morning. Scott’s friend Tracy is currently staying in San Jose on a student exchange program, so we got a couple taxis over to the party.

As you can see from he picture, it was a wild and crazy time. They even had Spanish karaoke and salsa dancing! :)

Arenal Volcano Eruption

So while eating dinner, (a 14 ounce, $8 filet mignon), the volcano was erupting. So we ended up seeing lava streaming down the volcano tonight. Not sure if it was happening during the day or not, but definitely could see the lava glowing at night.

Unfortunately no one has a good enough camera to get a lava shot that turns out. :( Oh well, it was neat anyway…

Tabacón

Tabacón resort is pretty nice and we’ll be staying here for 2 nights. Lots to do and a really neat maze of hot springs fed by the Arenal volcano.

Too bad their tech guys don’t know anything about computers or the Internet. One guy actually came to my room, and looked at my laptop for about 20 minutes before he said, “Oh, is this a Macintosh? These don’t work with the Internet.” In reality it was a problem with their authentication servers (which I knew from the beginning).

Property In Playa Hermosa

Anne’s aunt is a real estate agent and lives in Playa Hermosa, so we went to check out a house she was selling. A pretty nice place with a decent (hah) view… I think it was around 4,500 square feet and rents as a vacation rental for $5,000/week. It’s currently on the market for ~$1.4M… probably an excellent investment since Playa Hermosa is about to blow up with a bunch of 5 star hotels coming in and a new marina for yachts.

Snorkeling In Playa Hermosa

In a little hotel we found down a dirt alley in Playa Hermosa today (it’s actually a really nice place right on the beach) and we went on a 3 hour snorkeling tour for $20 (gotta love how cheap Costa Rica is… our hotel worked out to $19 per night, per person… including an awesome breakfast).

Julien and Celeste can’t decide who gets me, so I guess they both do. :) I especially like everyone’s lame smiles. hah

Once Bobby gets his underwater camera pictures developed, I’ll put some pics pics from that up.

Jacó, Costa Rica

Avoid this crappy town like the plague. We drove through it on our way to Playa Hermosa, and someone came up and stabbed our tire while we were sitting in the car.

As Julien would say, “Thank you very much! We really appreciate it!” (you have to smile and wave to get the full effect). :)

Three-Toed Sloth

We are staying in Manuel Antonio (at the Costa Verde hotel) for 2 nights (last night was our first night), and we woke up, and check out what was outside our hotel window (this a picture from our room)… A three-toed sloth. Cool. :)


BTW, my head still has a knot in it.

Cracked My Head

If anyone wants to know an easy way to bust your head open in a split second, just slip off the road into a concrete and stone wall. Your head doesn’t stand much of a chance, and it will bleed right away so you can look cool.

Another pretty awesome thing about it is that the injury will swell up so it looks like you have a ping pong ball under your skin within about 2 minutes. :)

I’m very thankful that it was Bobby’s birthday… if it wasn’t, I probably wouldn’t have been so drunk that it didn’t really hurt. But even so, the sound of the impact made me know it was going to bleed and swell. :)

Damn the rain forest and it being slippery!

Here’s the best picture of it though (notice Amelia in the background.. haha)

Crocodiles

Somewhere between David Hasslehoff’s favorite cafe and Manuel Antonio, we came across a bridge that had all sorts of crocodiles under it. Thankfully, there was a little shop that sold ice cream Trits (BTW, these things are f’ing good), so we could eat them while we stare at the crocodiles.

Gran Hotel, Costa Rica

We made it to Costa Rica, and we are staying in the “historic” Gran Hotel in San Jose. It was supposed to be 1.5 miles from the airport, but it’s more like 15 miles. Kind of screws up our rental car situation on the last day, but whatever… They have free Internet and free breakfast, so that makes up a little bit I guess.

They have a TINY (like 20′ x 20′) casino downstairs, which is great because you get free lukewarm Imperial beer. They DID add ice, so it was amazingly good (not). It tasted a bit like dog pee (or what I would suspect it would taste like).

No A/C in this hotel, and the power outlets are all the old 2-prong type (and not a single outlet of any type in the bathrooms). The good part about the room is that it smells like chicken (really)… sweet.

Oh well, we are just using this place as a place to sleep before we head out first thing in the morning to Manuel Antonio.

Funny I was in San Jose, California yesterday, and now San Jose, Costa Rica. :)

Airport Wait Times

Okay, so there was that terrorist thing going on today, so the airports were all whacked out… or at least they were supposed to be. Everyone at SES was like, “Dude, you only have 4 hours before your flight, and the airport is an hour away, you better leave now… Actually, you probably aren’t going to make your flight as it is, so we’ll see you back here in a few hours I guess.”

So I get to the airport with 3 hours before my flight… what happens? Uhm, I wait for the ONE person in the security line to go through before me, so it takes about 2 minutes to get through the security screening. Rad, now I’m at the airport with 3 hours to kill.

I think it might have been a plot cobbled together by Jen, Dave, DaveN, Danny and Vanessa to ditch me so they could go to the bar. Fuckers. “Oh yeah… let’s send Shawn to the airport, it will be funny.”

From BoingBoing

So CNN is reporting: “Because the plot involved taking liquid explosives aboard planes in carry-ons, passengers at all U.S. and British airports, and those boarding U.S.-bound flights at other international airports, are banned from taking any liquids onto planes.”

And then they have the photo of the TSA guy dumping a tub of confiscated possibly explosive liquids into a garbage can in a crowd of people.

Figure that shit out for me.

Don’t you think that some of these potentially explosive liquids might be more dangerous when, I don’t know, mixed in a big vat in the middle of an airport?

Christ, why don’t they just have people put their liquids into a big bonfire?

The whole liquid thing is stupid anyway since they allow some liquids. On the plane I was on, some lady was allowed to bring on a giant bottle of water for her dog. If you are a terrorist, wouldn’t you just keep the liquid on your person, and maybe not tell them you have it since they don’t have to send it through the x-ray machine?

Glacier National Park – Many Glacier Hotel

In case any of my friends were wondering if I dropped off the face of the planet this weekend, I was in Montana in the Glacier National Park area for a mini-vacation and a hippie music festival (Babbfest). The music wasn’t really my cup of tea, but I had something to do with marketing it, so it was a good excuse to get away for a weekend.

The festival itself was Saturday, and I didn’t leave there until around 4am. This made the trip back to my hotel a little eerie. Driving down a winding road at 4am, without being able to see a light in any direction. It was so dark that when I got to the hotel, I couldn’t see the ground (or a path) to get from the parking lot to the hotel (about 400 feet), so I kept flashing the parking lights with the alarm remote to give me flashes of light so I could see. The hotel I stayed at that night was Many Glacier, which is a bit of a creepy hotel in itself (Stephen King got the idea for the movie “The Shining” from this exact hotel… seriously).

Okay, so around 4:30 am, I finally get to my room. I take off my shoes and open the door to put the do not disturb sign on the door (which was like 60 seconds after I got in the room), and there’s a dude standing right at my door when I opened it. Needless to say, I almost shit my pants. Turns out he was just putting the early checkout slips under everyone’s door. But still… don’t sneak up on me like that buddy… especially when I’m staying in the hotel from The Shining, and it’s 4:30 am! :)

Oh dude… there’s no cell phone service within about 50 miles of this place, so I was pretty much cut off from the world (not only did the hotel not have Internet service either, but every plug in the entire hotel was the old 2 prong types, which means I couldn’t plug my computer in anywhere either).

There was a crazy fire over the weekend, and Alison got some pretty sweet pictures of it that night… which I’ll post as soon as she sends them to me.

Estonia Trip

This is what my slave does while in Estonia (I wish I could have gone)…

I guess they were supposed to play with grenades and rocket launchers too, but they were too late to do that. Sucks! :)

Bear Deterrent Spray

I’m going to Montana in 2 weeks for a little mini-weekend vacation, and someone mentioned to me that I should get some “bear spray” if I’m going to be hiking around. So I Google [bear spray] just to see what it is (not that I really was going to get any).

The #1 site that comes up is http://www.udap.com/

So the one testimonial they have on their front page is from some guy named Mark, and this is his picture they use:

Uhm yeah… if that’s what I’m going to look like after using their product, maybe I just won’t use their product and just skip the hiking part altogether I’m thinking. :)

California Is Not In Costa Rica

I booked a hotel near the San Jose airport for the first and last night we are in Costa Rica. But I just realized I booked it for San Jose, California, not San Jose, Costa Rica. Hmmm… I wonder if that’s going to make a difference or not. :)

Update

Okay, I got it squared away… not only got the reservation moved to a hotel in Costa Rica, but it was cheaper in Costa Rica, so I just got about $150 back. :)