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Author Micah Cambre

march 2008

Here’s a month in reflection:

  • NYC is best spent with someone. I can’t go there alone again without an objective, someone by my side, and keeping myself busy.
  • I meet the occasional person who I wasn’t expecting. Once again, that happened. The challenge is to keep it up in the meantime.
  • Next time I get the flu, 3 days max. And, please, not right in the middle of a conference at which I really wanted to spend more time networking and enjoying myself.
  • Austin is a small town trying to feel like a big city, but it’s really a small city that acts like a large town. Keep Austin weird!
  • SXSWi is getting too big for its own good. It makes me wonder what to do about next year.
  • I need to learn how to balance spending time out with friends and making time for myself. I hate sacrificing the chance to see people but I need to spend the time alone that I know I need.
  • Each visit to Houston reminds me of two things: I’m glad I’m living somewhere else but I miss it just as much as always. It’s always bittersweet to go back and return from the city.
  • I let go of a bunch of stuff I’ve had in boxes for years. I didn’t get any time to go through and sort that which I wanted to keep from that which I didn’t want. Nevertheless, it had to happen. Parts of my past went up in smoke, literally.
  • I didn’t have any Easter candy until after Easter when it was all on sale. What a nice way to save money!

the worst timing for being sick

This is not how I expected my month to go.

I spent a week in Manhattan enjoying it with my brother and dad. We saw lots of old and new places. The problem is that by the end of the week, I somehow contracted a virus. It wasn’t a minor virus either, it’s now full blown attacking me.

I’m now in Austin having arrived yesterday evening. My flight from LaGuardia was delayed three times and I had to rebook a flight from Houston to Austin. After 12 hours of airports and airplanes, I spent about another hour on the bus system before arriving at my destination broken and tired. So instead of either going out with the SXSWi crews or even with the person I’m staying, I forced myself into bed hoping that sleep and relaxation would cure this ailment.

Nope.

I need drugs. Badly!

I’ve already missed parties, I’m going to miss panels, and I might not even start participating until later today or tomorrow by the looks of it. Can I get a do over, please?

UPDATE 11:30am: Screw it, I’m at the conference. No more sacrifices for my health! ;-)

nyc in march

My flight was approximately 5 hours. I was awake for less than an hour of it. Perfect.

The best thing about being back in NYC? The excitement I feel about being in the hustle and bustle of such an amazing city.

The worst thing about being back in NYC? It’s March and it’s freezing cold. I didn’t bring a heavy jacket either.

the bittersweet serendipity

A few days ago, I found out an old colleague of mine was sent to Manhattan for a few days on a business trip. Knowing his disdain for all things New York, I gave him a quick suggestion for one of the best desserts you’d get anywhere.

After a couple of text messages back and forth over the next few hours, confirming that I didn’t send him to a restaurant which caters to only one sexual orientation, he takes heed on my suggestion. I then wanted confirmation that his dessert hit the spot.

Success!
… well, almost.

One day later, tragedy strikes. The unexpected, one terrible, disgusting report that I never expected:

USA Today reported that Serendipity3 was closed down on account of a failing health inspection. This is the day after I sent my former colleague to enjoy their dessert. The reason they closed? According to his reiteration of the problem:

and his follow-up response:

I was sooooo embarrassed and disgusted. I tried to assure him that what didn’t kill him only made him stronger but to no comfort. It was of little comfort that I made an honest mistake, but he knows of my embarrassment and sympathy.

Would I recommend this dessert again? Absolutely, but you might want to just order the mix and make it yourself!

This is, in every sense of the word irony, the worst case of “serendipity” I’ve ever been apart of.

i was reminded

It’s been a month since I left for New York City and already it seems like a lifetime ago. The past month has pretty much reminded me of so many different things about my life.

I was reminded that I love Manhattan. I cherish my trips to the city, enjoying something completely new with every visit that I make. I was only just there last October but I don’t feel I could ever get enough of that city, at least from a visiting perspective. I love the rush and bustle of such a beautiful city, of the concrete island where the whole world turns to. I miss the abundance and convenience of everything being within reach. And I now miss knowing that I might be facing something really special.

I was reminded that I’m onto my next adventure before I finish blinking my eyes. Soon after arriving back home from Manhattan, I quickly had to turn around for the next flight to Dallas for a graduation and family reunion. It’s always nice to see those who I grew up knowing and loving. And bringing everyone together in one place again is comfortable and peaceful, even if we do all have our own drama and can get sick of each other. But, once again, I said my goodbyes and tried to make my peace with finding out I wouldn’t get that chance.

I was reminded that sleeping in until almost noon is so relaxing and easy. The reminder that I’m fighting on my own is scary, and realizing that my life is in my own hands is even scarier. I didn’t make enough effort these past two weeks. Instead, I relaxed and did what I wanted. I spent my minutes consuming all that I found. I’m gonna have to do better than this when I get back.

I was reminded that fundamental differences affect who you are. I learned about, which was kind of a renewal, how satisfying it is to make unique experiences. To go where most people don’t, to enjoy what little has been discovered, and be with people who want to see life differently. I’m different than most of my friends because I don’t keep a steady job or participate in the mundane routines or follow in the same footsteps. I continue to gather new insights in the niche of life; those things which don’t mean much to most but can bring immense joy to few. I was reminded to look beyond the ordinary and strive for the extraordinary. But I didn’t see some of this until others opened my eyes again. It’s satisfying to embrace the differences in others, but the things I can’t just change overnight will be a barrier to continuing down those familiar paths.

I was reminded what it’s like to have feelings. I made connections and grew into relationships with old and new. I realize more what I do want and what I do not want. But I fall victim to not getting what I really desire. I gave it all I could but found out that it wasn’t going to happen. It’s not fair to not give yourself the benefit of the doubt, to not give your 100% opportunity before calling in your chips, but sometimes you’re not allowed to finish what your started and must move on from what you wish you might have. I’m so thankful I was at least given the opportunity because it made me very happy. Just a few more weeks of, I hope, a little more bliss…

I’ve been through a lot in just a month but I feel like in some ways, I made the best of mostly everything but wasn’t given the opportunity to find out about the rest. I took so many photos of Manhattan and am proud of how they turned out, even if they are still very amateur. But I wish I had the chance to explore the new avenues I was walking down. Instead, my path was diverted to a dead end that I see in the distance. Eventually, it’s back onto some other trails.

natural history

This city is too huge. I’ve walked all up and down 2nd and 3rd Avenue in the upper East side looking for free wifi and found nothing but a bunch of upper class restaurants. Not that I’m complaining about seeing some pretty cool places, but that I didn’t find ONE place that offers free wifi. It was tough walking around with my MacBook Pro all over the place.

I went to the American Museum of Natural History and had a great time. My favorite event was going to the Hayden Planetarium where I saw a 30 minute presentation of cosmic collisions, their feature presentation. I LOVE planetariums! I need to see the one in LA sometime b/c I’ve never even been to one there! There are even two observatories that could EASILY whet my appetite. Geez, I need more friends to go do that stuff with.

Why does the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History turn up as the third result on Google’s search? Is it that good? Sadly, the one in LA doesn’t even turn up in the results.

I should make this summer’s goal to visit all the museums I either haven’t visited or revisit those which I haven’t been to in quite a while. Locations will include Seattle, NYC, LA, Houston, Santa Barbara, and other local places.

flickr photos

I went to NYC last week. I spent 6 hours editing photos. Enjoy!

flickr

the years of my life

When I take such long absences from posting on my website, I get lost for words. So much happens in a month and to try and summarize everything, sentences flowing nicely from event to event, can be arduous. It is then that the random nature of my thoughts is all I have to go on.

My month started with a short, somewhat unpleasant trip to San Diego. The best part was going to Seaworld for the first time. The worst was not enjoying myself and getting too little sleep. It’s because of experiences like this that you must re-evaluate your priorities and desires in life. But luckily, I caught up on sleep and will try to trust my gut more often.

I’ve started a huge project at work that has kept me constantly busy as I continually try to play catch up, rewriting code after code. You’d think I would be further along than I am but one thing leads to another. And I’ve had a much better month than August and July. When my site is finally redesigned, I’ll let you take a peek at it. Although, it’s rather technical and not so exciting. Oh, and it’s been just over six months since I joined this company. My, how time flies.

In less than two weeks, I shall mark my return to one of my favorite destinations: NYC. I’m going to spend five and a half days there enjoying the city, catching up with the bro, and meeting new people. I have no plans and hope to have as much fun as I possibly can in a great big city. My last visit to Manhattan was November of 2003. It has been much too long since that visit and I hope my next visit back doesn’t take me another three years. Who knows… Maybe soon in the future I’ll be spending week after week there for a while.

I have almost certainly finished most of my major freelance web design work. That’s a very good feeling as it’s been looming in the background since I began working full-time. This is also great because I can now get out there and start pursuing other things which make me happy, such as music and traveling. Being a full-time and freelance designer for almost all the time I’m awake during the day has burnt me out on web design. I enjoy the art behind it, I enjoy learning new methods and putting new puzzles together, but I am very tired of doing this day after day. I’ve lost a little of the passion. Which is why I think pursuing other things I enjoy during my freetime will help me regain the passion for it as well as build others.

This is the first weekend in a very long time where I felt like I’ve had so much time to myself. It is such a nice feeling to not feel pressured by projects that need to be done. However, I don’t want to get TOO comfortable because I need to stimulate myself with my freetime looking for new, cool opportunities. Time to get myself out there again. And maybe now I can finally get something going with all of this musical talent that I supposedly have.

Since my last post about working out more regularly, I’m proud to say that I’ve been fairly consistent over the past month. I jog no less than 3 times a week as well as life weights 3-4 times a week. It’s not like you can really see any results but I know I feel better because of it. However, my legs and knees are starting to feel a little on the bad side of this. So I need to be careful about what I’m doing. Time to start considering joining a gym.

Friday night was a great night. I went to CBS studios for the first time ever and was able to see a few studios. The foremost studio that I walked on was the Price is Right set! That was really cool since I’ve grown up watching it. But it’s always true what they say about TV adding weight. That studio is TINY. The stage is tiny. Everything was so small. And, actually being on stage where Bob Barker does his thing was really awesome. The other studios I visited were Bold and the Beautiful, Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, and Tyra Banks. Tyra’s studio is exactly as you would imagine… made for a diva. It is HUGE. It’s great knowing the right people!

These really are the greatest years of my life. And I truly believe it’s only going to get better from here.

NYC Baby

… Oh geez, my title rhymes. Moving on.

Manhattan was once again a wonderful visit!! This is my bi-yearly visit, which actually would be every two years instead of every 6 months. I just don’t know how to state that properly on here. Justin and I spent all of yesterday and all of today walking around and seeing the sights. I had a different purpose this time around, however. Because I now have a digital camera, I was able to take pictures! So, when I get back to Houston and when I am able to make the time, I will be posting my NYC/New England pics for all to see. I hope that I took some stellar shots but am not counting on it because I didn’t have my tripod most of the time and I was rushed to take pics so that Justin wasn’t too bored.

Yesterday was probably the most productive day for us. We decided to drive into Manhattan via the Lincoln tunnel. After finding the most expensive place to park (or at least it seems so), we walked around Central Park. I hadn’t seen a lot of the park so this time around we took a really long walk up to the huge lake in the middle. It was a very productive walk and I got some good shots of different areas. That park rocks and I wish I could spend more time there. I don’t know what it is but something about the huge skyscrapers touching the sky and the green, colorful nature combined really has an effect on me and probably many other people who have been there.

We obviously went to the usuals: Times Square, Statue of Liberty (actually Battery Park, not the island), and to all the touristy stuff. We decided not to go on any of the tours such as the NBC studios tour or Statue of Liberty ferry ride. I just wanted to photograph as much as possible.

Today we found a very cheap parking garage so if anyone needs advice on where to park in Manhattan for cheaper, ask away! Today wasn’t as eventful because of a delayed entrance and difficulty in finding parking. I talked to a grad student at NYU about their music technology grad program. It is amazing what they have available to students! UCD has no comparison this program. I’ll probably apply but the deciding factor will probably be money. Simple as that.

Celebrity sightings for the week:
Barbara Walters
John Stossel
Jessica Simpson
Wesley Clark
Playboy bunnies!

Justin and I happened upon the Ed Sullivan theater just as the taping had wrapped last night. Wesley Clark was the guest and there were a lot of supporters with posters and banners out to greet and meet him. So Justin and I got a good position around when he came out to see him. He interviewed with MTV for a few minutes giving his opinions on the issues. As soon as he turned to go greet people, Justin yelled out, “Go NAVY, beat ARMY!”

To understand why this is funny, here’s a little background. Justin just completed a year of Naval Academy education. He’s been in the Navy for the past 4 years. Wesley Clark served in the army and is a graduate of Westpoint.

Wesley turned over to Justin, surprised, and replied, “Oh!! I have a lot of Navy friends!”. So they shook hands (which I tried my best to get a picture of but it happened so quickly). This was Justin’s thrill of the trip. It’s all downhill from there…