Wednesday, August 31, 2011

BLOG: Frequency Fail

Okay, so I've measurably failed to meet my goal of two new posts per week. What can I say except that I've been busy. I should know better by now than to make promises I won't pressure myself to keep. That said, last night I agreed to be the test speaker for the Girl Talk Toastmaster's Evaluation Contest a couple weeks from now. I committed to this because I do already have a speech topic in mind... It's just a matter of coming up with the opening, closing, and outline. The working title of the speech is "Super Combo", and I'm intending it to be an entertaining speech about how I followed my desire to work at a movie theater. Opening - something about jobs/experiences you've had an interest in trying. Body - the three areas I got experience working: theaters, box office, and concessions. Closing - no mind-shattering life lessons learned, just the feeling of fulfillment of pursuing an interest. I have two weeks to add some meat to those bones. Endorphins will help with the process and the practicing. My goal is to 1) get through it, 2) not use notes, 3) stay within the 5-7 minute range. Good luck everyone. That's about it for today... I'll try not to lolly-daggle. Until next time. (p.s. - I ran/walked 5.2 miles tonight. [go me!]) :)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

FOOD: Nona Tap Bar

This past Saturday (7/23/11) was one of my fonder days of recent memories' past.

It began at 3:15am, an hour after when I was originally intended to wake up. By 4:30am, I was at Downtown Disney, in front of the World of Disney store, waiting for the Passholder Sale. In line, I met a mother & daughter from Tampa who were awake, perky, and somewhat covertly "conservative" as I picked up on their references to "Fox & Friends" plus the tone in which they encouragingly implied that someday I will get married [as in the traditional way] ... seriously, do I not put out the gay vibe? Anyways, between them and the attractive young Latin couple in front of us, 6:00am came quickly, and the madness was on.

Really, there weren't many great deals this time around, but I managed the following:
  • Two full trays of Vinylmations (Toy Story and Have a Laugh),
  • Four polo shirts with a Mickey on them (2 black, 2 orange),
  • Four new outfits for Duffy Stitch (Australia, United Kingdom, China, and Buzz),
  • Two awesome fabric, 40th anniversary jackets,
  • Three girly scarves,
  • Two Kermit Mickey ears, and
  • One Disney kid's bank.
All-in-all, the damage came out to around $300 -- oh well, I was glad to have left the store in good spirits. Tired and depleted, I went over to Ghiradelli's and, per tradition, picked up a chocolate croissant and a small coffee -- a small breather before heading onto Event #2.

Next was the District 84 DEC Meeting at the Tupperware Headquarters. Registration at 9:30am, meeting to begin at 10:00am. I always enjoyed these meetings when I attended as an area governor last year. It was an opportunity to be part of a well-run, professional meeting. The difference this time was that I was there without any real responsibility, and there was a new generation of area governors -- it felt like I just stepped into a television spin-off. Anyways, I was there just to, during the breaks, distribute Club Ambassador forms and speak with each division to answer any questions and to get them excited about the program. The meeting was a really cool time, and I met a lot of people -- and many who I'd like to get to know better. At the meeting, I did get positive feedback from some of the district officers. I was appreciated for my energy and for taking pictures -- that communicated appreciation is what really fuels me and keeps me wanting to go back and do more.

That meeting ended about half-an-hour ahead of schedule. It was hot outside with the weather possibly changing. Instead of heading back west to the parks (dressed in slacks and a polo), I headed towards home, but not before stopping by the Lake Nona area to go exploring.

I'm a big Gowalla fanatic -- I recently reached over 2000 unique check-ins. Long story short, a Gowalla friend of mine who I never met had taken a picture, earlier in the week, while checking-in at a toll plaza, and made a comment.

Photo at Boggy Creek Mainline Toll Plaza by Rob Morris

Stamp for Boggy Creek Mainline Toll Plaza
Rob Morris checked in at Boggy Creek Mainline Toll Plaza and took this photo.

  • Avatar for Rob Morris
    Rob Morris: I tried to recreate Cedric's photo. I think I was pretty close to it.
  • Avatar for Cedric Ching
    Cedric Ching: Nice timing! :) +1

And here was my pic...

Avatar for CedricCSCFL
Photo at Boggy Creek Mainline Toll Plaza by Cedric Ching
Stamp for Boggy Creek Mainline Toll Plaza
Cedric Ching checked in at Boggy Creek Mainline Toll Plaza and took this photo.

Well, I then made it a mission for me to recreate one of his photos. I was going to pass by his area anyway, so let's have fun with it. The picture that caught my eye was one that he took of his Banana Bread Beer at the Nona Tap Room because it looked so delicious.

His (my goal):
Avatar for RobMorris
Photo at Nona Tap Room by Rob Morris
Stamp for Nona Tap Room
Rob Morris checked in at Nona Tap Room and took this photo.

  • Avatar for Eric Longstaff
    Eric Longstaff: Congrats! I keep forgetting to give my beer club card when I close my tab
  • Avatar for Cedric Ching
    Cedric Ching: That looks so good.

After the Toastmasters meeting, I drove over to Lake Nona and to the Nona Tap Room. As I walked up, a family was leaving. As I got to the bar and told the bartender my goal, my purpose, my mission, she told me that "yeah, he was just in here with his wife and daughter." I had given him a long look, but I didn't say anything other than "thank you." I might have wanted some recognition back... but then I remembered that my profile pic was of Stitch, and maybe 1 of my 1566 photos had me in it. Upon that realization, I felt like a stalker on one of those CBS procedurals.

Anyways, the beer turned out to be of the $15 variety... but it was my main purpose for being there, so alright. And I think that I did pretty good -- I had to get Stitch in there. What could've helped even more is if I had brought a print out to do side-by-side comparison, but perhaps that would've been even creepier.

Well, about an hour later, I receive notification of a comment on the pic, and it was Rob.

Avatar for CedricCSCFL
Photo at Nona Tap Room by Cedric Ching
Stamp for Nona Tap Room
Cedric Ching checked in at Nona Tap Room and took this photo.“Howdy Rob, here's an attempt to copy one of your pics. :-)”

  • Avatar for Rob Morris
    Rob Morris: Nice job Cedric! I think I might have passed you on my way out the door.
  • Avatar for Cedric Ching
    Cedric Ching: Yes, thanks for holding the door for me.


I was proud and scared at the same time. Proud that I accomplished my goal. Scared that I was being creepy. I didn't mean to. After finishing up there -- the beer was good (not overpowering) and quite a bit (two of those glasses' worth) -- I continued on to try to complete his Local Nona Living trip (10 spots, need 5). I picked up some Walnut Shrimp from Mr. K Chinese Restaurant and a large unsweetened iced tea from Dunkin Donuts a couple doors down, but that's it. I couldn't manage any more food. I will have to accomplish his trip another time. I brought the foods over to Moss Park -- a bit of an exploration. It had a nice view of Lake Mary Jane... $3 admission, but it's going to a good cause. The break from the ordinary was nice, and it fed some of my Gowalla-ing obsession.

That's about it.

(I'm sure that I could really work to tighten up the Lake Nona visit description -- plus add more links -- but I'd rather get this stuff up sooner than too late.) *smiles*

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

"RUN": 2.0 miles, Home <-LL-> WM

The second mile was much better than the first. [didn't have to stop, no bugs out tonight (~10:45pm), lots of people still out working in their garages; anyways...]

Tonight was a return to the road. I've been saying that I've been alright with my recent (since last September) weight gain -- from 165lbs. to about 185lbs. -- that I'd begin the return to fitness once I hit 200, but there was an unrecognized-till-now indicator that shook me.


A couple days ago, I happened to look downwards, and as I did, I also noticed a couple of troubling formations. I vowed that I should start running again, and also perhaps start lifting some weights (now that I have a base of mass on me) -- it's another "mid-mid-mid-life crisis" as I also attempt to get back with this blog.

It's another interval of introspection, and I'm hoping that this aids the formation and organization of near-future speeches.

===== (the following section is really rough) =====
Currently, I'm thinking about a speech about development... I'd start by trying to connect with the audience, mentioning situations in which we're out in public and there's that one really misbehaved child throwing tantrums, etc. Then I'd ask them what thoughts are running through their heads... "I'm glad that kid's not mine." and then I'd say that when that happens, I just say to myself "I was worse."

I'd go on to explain how I was worse (I was totally conscious about what a brat I was), but then I'd stand before everyone as evidence of what that piece of coal could be. It just took some patience, guidance, and the willingness to become better (<-- that could be better-worded).

I should probably work on a conclusion next, but I do have a lot of ideas for the three points -- mom and her newspaper clippings, video games/computer applications, cooking, or drawing the parallel to developing at work or in Toastmasters. And that I've grown a lot because of the patience that my parents, siblings, and friends have shown me, and from the guidance they and other have provided me.

In my conclusion, I would challenge the audience to recognize times that people have to go through that brat stage and that the best things we can do is be patient and be that parent. And I would conclude by that I'm still sometimes that brat.

Working Title: "..."
===== (the above section is really rough) =====

I just wanted to get an entry up... I'll probably be coming back to continue this brainstorm. Now I need to grab a little fro-yo, take a quick shower, then get to bed.


Sunday, July 17, 2011

Hello World 2011.

Hello World.
This is how We, in the software industry, typically start coding projects. It's a primer of sorts that serves as our initial benchmark, indicating that we've taken that first step. And this is how I will begin a rebirth of the Soneevda blog.

I will not cover in this post the reasons I was on a year-long hi8us, nor will I cover all the reasons why I've returned except to say that I need a place to type out my thoughts of the day -- the successes, the defeats, the exciting, and the mundane -- without feeling that my words would be a burden.

Granted, should the thin veil of electronic cover be breached, then this would be my documented confessions. As saucy as this prospect may sound, I'll be the first to acknowledge your future disappointment.

It's a mind-sort. It's an exercise in ramble. It's a history.

Time and energy are premiums nowadays with increased responsibilities in a number of organizations, but I'm setting a goal of at least two post per week -- with no promise of length or decoration.

We'll just see how this experiment will go in this first month back. Let's do this!

Thursday, July 08, 2010

VIDEO: 2010 Emmy Nominations for "Outstanding Commercial"

Today, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences announced the nominees for the 62ndst Primetime Emmy Awards. The winners will be announced on Sunday, August 29, 2010 with Jimmy Fallon hosting. The show will air on NBC from Los Angeles' Nokia Theater.

I'm so happy with Modern Family's nominations!:
- Outstanding Comedy Series
- Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Comedy Series
    - Jesse Tyler Ferguson as Mitchell
    - Eric Stonestreet as Cameron Tucker
    - Ty Burrell as Phil Dunphy
- Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Comedy Series
    - Julie Bowen as Claire Dunphy
    - Sofia Vergara as Gloria Delgado-Pritchett
- Outstanding Guest Actor In A Comedy Series
    - Fred Willard as Frank Dunphy
- Outstanding Art Direction For A Single-Camera Series
- Outstanding Casting For A Comedy Series
- Outstanding Directing For A Comedy Series
    - Modern Family - Pilot
- Outstanding Picture Editing For A Comedy Series (Single Or Multi-Camera)
    - Modern Family - Pilot
    - Modern Family - Family Portrait
- Outstanding Sound Mixing For A Comedy Or Drama Series (Half-Hour) And Animation
- Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series

Anyways, per tradition, below are this year's nominees for "Outstanding Commercial", but first, here's last year's winner:

Heist - Coca-Cola
Wieden + Kennedy, Ad Company
Psyop, Production Company

And now for this year's nominees...

...for Outstanding Commercial

Coke Finals - Coca-Cola
Wieden+Kennedy, Ad Agency

(sorry for the scrolling banner, this was the only vid of it I found on YouTube)

This commercial follows their pattern of Coke someone sleeping and tiny things opening a bottle of Coke. My thought is that the history miniatures could've also just hit the alarm. Meh.

Green Police - Audi
Hungry Man, Production Company
Venables Bell & Partners, Ad Agency

Entertaining the first time I saw it a few months ago, I think that I'm a bit worn of it now. Meh

Human Chain - Nike
Wieden+Kennedy, Ad Agency
Smuggler, Production Company

Loved it the first time I saw it, love it now. Great effects and inspirational.

The Man Your Man Could Smell Like - Old Spice Body Wash
Wieden+Kennedy, Ad Company
MJZ, Production Agency

Ha ha ha! Quick narrative, smooth transitions, ADD-friendly. I like this one too.

Game - Mars Snack Food US/Snickers
BBDO New York, Ad Company
MJZ, Production Company

OMG, never under-estimate the power of Betty White!

Anthem - Absolut
MJZ, Production Company

This commercial was well done, I suppose, but something's lacking... inspiration from a hard alcohol?

Anyways, my vote would go to Nike's "Human Chain" or Snickers' "Game".

Which one would you choose?
(Leave a comment. *wink wink*)

[For a complete list of nominees, let me refer you to the [generic] Emmy nominations page]

Monday, June 28, 2010

INAH: Maybe Dizzy

Maybe it's the still-sick-after-a-week-of-being-sick, maybe it's the news that I'm going back to 1st shift tomorrow after a day of being on 2nd (again), maybe it's the 10 hours in front of the computer while wearing polarized sunglasses, maybe it's the entire pot of coffee I drank today, maybe it's the poorly lit and poorly coned 192-to-I95 ramp-that-almost-resulted-in-a-wreck-with-a-construction-truck-tonight, maybe it's the haven't-exercised-in-three-weeks, maybe it's the too-much-to-do-before-bed-to-go-to-bed, but I'm feeling dizzy. INAH.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

TELEVISION: America's Got Talent

[When I went up to SC last weekend, I made a stop to visit my sister in Charleston. Some of her friends were over, and we got caught up on America's Got Talent. It was surprisingly entertaining. Below are three of my favorites from that evening.]

Nick Pike, 30 Juggler - Orlando Auditions

Chipps Cooney, 61 Illusionist - NY Auditions, Day 2

Doogie Horner, 30 Comedian - NY Auditions, Day 1

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

FOOD: Pineapple-Cherry Dump Cake

[This was the first time I made a "Dump Cake", and it really was incredibly easy and incredibly delicious. I made it for today's Hawaiian-themed Toastmasters meeting, and it was ravaged! The pineapple upside-down cake I made for last week's Luau-themed meeting didn't get this much attention. Perhaps the PUD cake was "too formal" versus the non-shape-forming quality of the cobbler. *shrug*

All I know is that the dump cake was super easy and a lot less of a mess. We'll be seeing that one again soon.]


1 can (16 oz.) crushed pineapple
1 can (20 oz.) cherry pie filling
1 pkg. yellow cake mix
1/2 to 2/3 c. chopped nuts
1/2 c. butter

In a 9 x 13 inch pan, dump in the pineapple and juice, spreading evenly. Pour cherry pie filling over the pineapple, spreading evenly. Add dry cake mix evenly over the fruit. Add nuts. Drizzle melted butter over top. Do not mix. Bake 350 degrees for 1 hour.