Blown Away

While out at Avalon, money seemed to be a non-issue. I have a job as did nearly everyone else down there and we were all in the mind set of “okay this is vacation, what’s an extra 10 or 20 bucks here or there”. Now, with that in mind, when the hell did everything get so expensive? Lancers is my go-to eatery and that’s what I use when I compare prices. A bacon, egg, and cheese, on a bagel there is under 5 bucks. In Avalon it was about 7 dollars. Pancakes were $5.75 and to make them chocolate chip brought it up to $7.75. How in the fuck does a quarter of a bag of chocolate chips cost 2 dollars? A small chocolate milk was $3.00 and a large was $3.75. I could go to the super market and get an entire gallon of milk for the same price.

Back in the day I didn’t understand why so many people ate McDonald’s and other fast food but it is now abundantly clear. Normally I just ate food at my house or whatever the dining hall was serving at Ursinus. It only took a single week in the real world to see how ridiculous, yes ridiculous, some prices are. And the worst thing is that everyone in the place knows the prices are outrageous but they keep coming back. Now with something like gas, I understand paying the high prices. Gas is necessary and there is no cheaper alternative. If you go to the super market you can get everything way cheaper than if you go out to a restaurant or some eating establishment. I’m not going to let them take advantage of me anymore.

The one eating establishment I DO approve of is Friendly’s. I got a Honey BBQ Chicken Supermelt, which is amazing, a lemonade, and an ice cream for 10 dollars, now that’s a bargain.

 

Ashamed

While I love suggesting new bands or songs to people, the follow post will show the songs that I’m not so quick to admit I like.

Yaz – Only You

My brother Tom showed me this song a long long time ago and when he played it he was also quick to say that it’s pretty gay and corny but he liked it. That’s pretty much how I feel about this song. It’s 80’s at it’s best. It has a really gay taste to it but it’s a catchy little tune that I often find stuck in my head after listening to it.

The Only Exception – Paramore

Hayley Williams is my number one celebrity crush which probably aids the fact that I like this song and Paramore in general. Once again this is another pretty simple song about love. Instead of “Only you”, it’s “You are the only…”. I think it’s coincidence and not necessarily the message of true love but who knows anymore. Anyway, yes this is a pretty basic song, a little guitar action and then a bit of a bang towards the end but nothing out of this world. I like this one.

The Perfect Drug – Nine Inch Nails

I first saw this song in Rock Band being played on the drums and I can’t explain why but I loved it. I feel like there are a few songs that Nine Inch Nails has that people enjoy listening too but this wouldn’t be one of them. This isn’t a girly lovey song but it’s just a weird sort of disturbed song. I remember I sent it to Palmisano once as a song I wanted him to listen to and afterward I kind of realized it’s a pretty unique song that I don’t see very many people liking. I feel like it’s something that could be on in the background for a minute or two and then eventually everyone would say “what the hell are we listening too?”

Happy Ending – Avril Lavigne

I’ve listened to this song way too many times. I don’t dislike Avril but I’ve never been a huge fan. Shes been in the spotlight for a while now and none of her songs really got to me. Her punk, me vs the world attitude kind of pissed me off but I this song seems to be the only exception… She kind of abandons the fuck everyone outlook and shows that she actually does have emotions. She is pretty attractive though when she tries to be. If it makes a difference I think her new song “Smile” is garbage, regardless this one is a keeper.

Vanilla Twilight – Owl City

This one is about as gay as it gets. An insomniac writing from his parents basement talking about things I could never even think of. Owl City is a one man band who had his fame with the song Fireflies. I liked Fireflies so I decided to check out some other songs. Most of them were garbage but this one was a gem. Last year at school I played this and Adam Rosenberg took a liking to it which confirmed that although it’s really gay, it’s also really good.

 

If you’re not too embarrassed feel free to post some other songs.

Stortzfest 11

Boy does time fly. It’s Friday night and this vacation is only a few hours away from being completely over. Avalon 11, or Stortzfest as Weller likes to call it, is virtually done but this was a pretty fun year. This paragraph will pretty much be scatter thoughts and comments about the week. This year had a bit of everything and nothing too over to top which is good and bad. We only got down to the beach 3 times or so but I got some good color and there was a decent amount of beach Frisbee. I drank twice the whole week, once being last night. It was Wagon’s birthday celebration so there was a decent crew hanging out and playing drinking games at our house but as always, the 21+ year olds headed out to the bar and when that time came my fun sort of ended. The bad thing is that next year I’ll still only be 20 so no fun for me. No friends came to visit witch is fine but fortunately Katie stayed here until today so I wasn’t a total loser. Today marked the mini-golf showdown between Laura and I. We had gone twice prior and she won one and I won the other. Today was the rubber match and miraculously I came out victorious by 1 stroke. I’m sad to leave and go back to the working world but it was a very enjoyable week and I’m already looking forward to Stortzfest 12.

The rest of this post will be dedicated to running. For those diehard fans like me, you all know Galen Rupp destroyed the last 800 of the 10k last night along with Matt Tegenkamp and Scotty Bauhs. Bauhs ran for a DII school in college and now he’s going to South Korea to represent the USA, anything can happen. The 5k is tonight which I’m very excited for. A fresh Solinsky versus Lagat and a sharp Rupp. It should be an epic battle. Normally running at Avalon is a terrible experience but this year hasn’t been so bad. I was so motivated today after seeing the 10k results that I pretty much did a 7 mile run really fast. I went out in 6:52 and that’s when I decided I would just start booking it. It was 75 and relatively humid so I got my sweat going pretty good and it wore me down a tad by the end but I was still motorin’. I went 6:24, 6:06, 5:56, 5:51, 6:10 (turned and started going into the wind), and finished with a 5:47 that was almost as fast as I could go. It was a very good run and I finally had a successful Avalon running year. I know there’s still a long summer ahead of me but I’m very excited for the upcoming cross season.

 

Vaca Post #2

Full day #3 at Avalon is complete and once again, we didn’t go to the beach. It’s been a pretty shitty beach week in all honesty. It’s been cloudy and sort of rainy for most of the days and it makes going to the beach very difficult. Running has been pretty good surprisingly and even though we haven’t been to the beach, these past couple of days has been very entertaining.

A couple of things to note. We went mini golfing for the first time and I got 2nd place. We had 7 people and I was playing well but kudos to Laura who beat me by 2 strokes and topped everyone. I won a free game almost exactly one year ago and I still have the ticket in my wallet. We’ll see if I can redeem it or not, I hope so. Another occurrence was the Wawa debacle. Chad ordered an Italian hoagie with peppers, onions, cheese and tomatoes. He received everything except for the meat. Now I don’t know about you that but that seems pretty Ridiculous!!! Normally this would be taken in stride and brushed aside quickly but we decided to stand up for what was right. We called, emailed, and facebooked Wawa to complain. They sent coupons and gave us a free hoagie when we went back tonight which was a pretty good deal but c’mon, I know it’s 2 in the morning but an Italian hoagie with no meat can’t be an honest mistake.

I’m also understanding how the game Scattergories can ruin any relationship you have with anybody. When the requirement is “things in space”, I answer dust, and I get vetoed, I have a problem with that. Space dust is all over the place in outer space. It was considered too “general” of an answer. I’m not saying there’s your normal dust bunnies in space somewhere, it’s space dust, there’s a difference. One thing I was proud of was vetoing Laura when she put down “daddy long legs” for “insects”. I immediately commented “spiders are arachnids not insects, insta-veto” and thanks to Mark she was not awarded a point. It’s a very fun game in small doses but it’s quite obvious that personal feuds develop and things get out of control very quickly.

That’s all I have for now. I know not many will be entertained by this post but it’s better than nothing. Tomorrow marks the halfway point of the vacation unfortunately but I won’t let that get me down.

Small Update

I’ve been in the shore for about 24 hours and it’s lived up to the hype. Last night Tom had a bunch of people over and even though Katie and I are only 19, we still drank with them  until they went to the bar. Tom is very big on games, board games in particular. We played scatterrgories with everyone and that game seems to be a train wreck for me. I like to think that I’m pretty creative and whatnot but I find myself drawing blanks and the creative  answers I think are good keep getting vetoed. I assume it’s an acquired skill and I’ll get better with experience but who knows.

A good thing about the first 24 hours is that it was a very good time and I only went to the beach for about 20 minutes. Today was a shitty beach day so we didn’t even go. It was really windy and cloudy which also made for a terrible run. Katie and I went on a 10 mile run this morning and it was torture. I’m extremely looking forward to the beach and Frisbee in particular. I went in the water yesterday and it was perfect. With nice weather this could potentially turn into the best Avalon week of my life.

This is really just an update post to keep people somewhat entertained but in reality I don’t have too much to say. I’ll try to get something of quality up tomorrow or the next day.

A Vacation

I feel like the quality and frequency of posts lately has been increasing recently. This has led to an increase in comments which is always appreciated. There’s one anonymous comment who goes by the name “Alaska”. I don’t know who this is and I’m not sure if I should know or not but regardless, I’m glad to have a regular reader/commenter. My quest to find out who this person is by their comments continues.

I finished up my last day of week before Avalon today. Work has been good lately. I’ve fallen into the swing of things and I think I fit in sort of well there in terms of quality of work, attitude, etc. Avalon is going to be a great time. Now that Tom has informed me that Laura will be the permanent DD (kidding Laura… but not really) things open up for me. Even if it ends up only be me and Katie and whoever else decides to come and visit me (open invite people, just let me know) it should still be a grand ole time. It’s going to be a week filled with running, the beach, Frisbee, jumping off the dock into the bay, and probably most importantly, sleep.

I will not however, be taking a vacation from this blog. I’ll try to keep posting daily and I can only imagine that with two bloggers in the same house (Tom and I), the creativity will be flowing relentless. We’ll both be pumping out post after post of the highest quality. This will be great for everyone.

From 69 to 99

I watched Toy Story 3 a couple of days ago. Now, if you’re a relatively avid Rotten Tomatoes follower then you know that this movie is apparently amazing. It got a 99%, just for a reference Nicolas Cage’s Season of the Witch is at 6%, yes that’s how good Toy Story 3 is supposed to be. It was also nominated for best picture. Well anyway, Katie and I watched the entire thing and I’ll say I wasn’t wowed. It was a good movie, I was entertained, I would probably give it a 7.5/10, and if I had to give it a simple + or -, it would be a plus. It was your typical Disney feel good story teaching you the morals of life, in this case, loyalty among other things. I wouldn’t say it should be nominated for best picture and I for sure wouldn’t give it a 99%.

There en lies the problem with the website Rotten Tomatoes. I know some people (Mark) live and die by what this website says. The problem is that the critics aren’t asked to rate it on a scale of 1-100, they rate it on a scale of 0-1. I’ve heard of the 0-1 scale before but it was in reference to girls, aka would you bang her or not. In this case, I can believe that 99 percent of people would say that this was a 1 instead of a 0. In this case, it’s obvious why it got a 99%. No one would say it was a bad movie. This is the major flaw in the Rotten Tomatoes system. Now there are movies that are controversial yet very good that can draw amazing or horrible reviews. These movies would receive either A+ ratings or F ratings. On Rotten Tomatoes, with the simple 0-1 scale, these potentially great movies get a shitty rating. It’s just a little something I thought of but it makes me wonder how reliable these so called ‘reliable sources’ actually are.

On another note, I’ve lived in the suburbs of Philadelphia, within an hour of the city, for my entire life. This past weekend I did something that anyone who considers them self a Philadelphian should do, I had a real Philly cheese steak. I’m embarrassed to say that I’ve gone nearly 19 years without ever having a REAL Philly steak. Obviously I know all of the big places and I’ve had my fair share of suburb steaks that were good but as far as I can recall, I’ve never had one. I went to Steve’s Prince of Steaks on Saturday night last weekend. It was about 2:30 in the morning and I was relatively drunk but it was absolutely delicious. Suburb steaks are definitely good, I’d imagine they’re better than most around the U.S., but the real ones are just on another level. The slices of steak and the melted cheese is just perfect.

That’s about all I got for now. The family vacation to Avalon begins on Saturday and I’m quite excited. It should be a very good week and even though I’m only 19 and will probably end up DD’ing mutliple times, it’s okay. A week off from work to go down the shore and relax every day at the beach is absolutely worth it.

69

I’d like to put one thing to rest right now. 69 or any association with 69 is not funny and it never was. When you’re watching TV and it’s on channel 69 or you ran a 400 repeat in 69 seconds or you car has —69 miles on it, and someone points it out, it’s literally never funny. Another thing to note about this is that as far as I’m concerned, not many people perform the sexual act of “69-ing” and if you’ve never done it then you should not be making a joke about it. If you have “69’d” before and you make a joke about it, it’s a little more justified but it’s just never funny. It’s one of those things that has been so over used but the sad thing is that it was never funny in the first place either. 7th graders are putting that in their screen name or gamer tag on XBox live because they think it’s hilarious or makes them look cool because it has to do with getting some. Whatever the reason may be, it’s just not funny. Young kids say it to look cool and I don’t know why older people say it but either way, just stop it. At least “that’s what she said” can be funny and original. There has to be a set-up to that line that’s always different and you can get a little creative about it. Nothing about 69 is funny or original or creative, you’re simply pointing out that the number is there. It’s just stupid.

Songs + Movies = Blog

Songs within movies can amplify the experience to a good extent. A great soundtrack never hurts. Quite often I find myself in the situation where I’m listening to a song and ask myself, “Ahh, what movie was that in?” The following list are songs within movies that I will always associate with one another.

The Movie: Ice Age
The Song: Send Me on my Way – Rusted Roots

Now right off the bat I’m know I’m going to get shit for this. Multiple people have said to me “no that song was in Matilda first”. Well that’s great but Matilda blew and Ice Age is a classic. When Manny, Sid, and Diego are trekking through the wilderness causing trouble or whatever, this song provides the perfect background music. It’s a prehistoric movie and with the flutes and whistles and everything else it sounds like that type of song as well. Sometimes you hear the song first and see the movie second but that was not the case for me. I will 100% always think of Ice Age when I hear this song.

The Movie: Old School
The Song: Sounds of Silence – Simon and Garfunkel

The first time I watched Old School, I didn’t think it was that funny. I don’t remember why I didn’t like it but I wasn’t a huge fan. I watched it again this summer and thought it was really funny. I must say though, even when I wasn’t a big fan, I thought the tranquilizer gun scene with Will Ferrell and Stifler was absolutely hilarious. The whole process of Ferrell falling into the pool is just ridiculous and then when he falls in the song begins. I didn’t know the song until the movie but  it fit the scene perfectly. It seemed it was going to be his peaceful death and the Sounds of Silence sealed the deal in this one.

The Movie: Kingpin
The Song: Superman – Goldfinger

Now this is a 2 for 1 because not only was this song in Kingpin, but it was also in Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1. I really like this song but I do always think of these two things when I hear it. It’s a great song to play at a party if the people know it. Anyway, Kingpin isn’t too popular of a movie but I’ve seen it a good amount of times and I think those who have seen it will appreciate it. When Woody Harrelson, his Amish buddy Ishmael, and the really hot slutty girl Claudia make their getaway from that house, this song goes blasting and it works very well with what’s going on. I love the song and I love the movie so this was a good one for me.

The Movie: Beavis and Butthead Do America
The Song: Roller Coaster of Love – Red Hot Chili Pepper’s

Beavis and Butthead was a little bit before my time and I don’t remember what any of the episodes are like but I’ve seen this movie a few times, once being last week, and I thought it was hysterical. I don’t remember exactly what’s happening when this song is playing but the one scene that sticks in my head is when one of the them is just sitting there staring up at the giant statue of a naked mermaid or whatever it is. I don’t know why but that scene has always stuck with me for some reason and that’s exactly what I think of when I hear that song, that exact scene.

The Movie: Saving Silverman
The Song: Hello Again – Neil Diamond

This was the easiest choice of all. I must have watched this movie 100 times over the course of 2 years in 7th or 8th grade. I’ve never even listened to the entire song or heard it anywhere else besides this movie but if somehow a sentence holds the words “hello again” or “my friend”, this pops into my head. I’ve sort of gotten the idea that Neil Diamond is a joke but that’s okay because the movie is a joke as well.

Well there’s a couple that I thought were notable. Some other ones I thought of were Hold On by Wilson Phillips in Harold and Kumar, Tommy Boy also has a couple that would be good but in my head these are the ones that stuck out the most. I was also going to include Running with the Devil in Ready to Rumble but I figured two horrible movies (Saving Silverman) would be a little too much. Feel free to comment with some others.

RIP Snuffles

Snuffles is unfortunately going to be put down. She is easily the smartest cat I’ve ever encountered. She somehow learned how to open up the back door by herself. She was the first cat to figure out the new cat door. She would play mind games with you in order to get what she wanted and even though she really pissed me off time and time again, she will be very missed. Having pets is a weird thing because you’re almost always going to outlive them. My life won’t change significantly because Snuffles will no longer around. Rarely didn’t she make or ruin my day but I definitely don’t want to see her go. Sometimes animals just hit a point and even though we could keep her around for another week or two, it would just be torture. I’ve always kind of thought that humans shouldn’t be in position to play god and decide when animals should be put down or not but I really think that if she had the choice she would have chosen to be put out of her misery. I guess since the Stortz family has gone through so many cats I sort of know how to deal with animal deaths but either way, it’s never easy. She’s on the kitchen counter as this is being written but by the time everyone reads this she will be gone. It’s just so final. What’s the appropriate thing to do since I know I’ll never be able to pet her again or hear her purr again or yell at her for stealing chicken off of my plate? It’s not like she can understand the words that I say to her. She doesn’t know that she’s going to be put down, she just knows things aren’t the same as they once were.

With all of that said, Snuffles Stortz you were a wonderful cat and much smarter than I am. I suppose if you can love an animal then I can say that I love you Snuffles, I’ll miss you.