July 9, 2009

The rest of the ketchup.

Posted in Beginnings, Ketchup at 8:34 pm by nedbun

Home

Actually, I have more animal room mates than human ones. They were all pretty awesome until I found out 2 of the 3 cats had fleas… and then it became 3 cats with fleas.

Kitty

Kitty is a pretty awesome cat. She talks to you when you call her name and she is very verbal about how she’s feeling pretty much all the time. It can get annoying sometimes when she’s had a bad day and it’s 3 am because she does not hesitate to tell you about it regardless. She’s gotten very skinny since Flake and Miko have been preying on her food like vultures, although I will say that she puts up a really good fight or at least it seems like it based on the giant balls of ripped out hair left over after the wrestling matches…

Flake

Flake is too cool for school. He’s got ‘tude and he doesn’t give a rat’s ass if you like it or not. He’s sweet when he wants to be, but his main mission is to BUST OUT. He will stop at nothing to get outside. Continually he has forced his way between my window shutters and popped off my screen to freedom. I’m not sure why he is so obsessed with going outside, but this guy is on a mission and I’m clearly in the way. He was very welcoming to me when I first arrived, although we haven’t been such great friends since he’s been exiled from my room due to fleas.

Miko

Miko is the best. He’s a big fluffy cat with an equally ebullient personality. We fell in love the second we saw each other and we’ve been buds ever since. Miko will assume his “pet me” position anytime anyplace and at the drop of a dime. This does, however, put him in danger at night because he likes to sprawl out right outside my door. I have on more than one occasion stepped on him in the hallway in the middle of the night. Luckily, he has enough hair that I think the damage was negligible.

Alaska

Alaska is awesome. He’s a german shepherd, husky mix, which makes him HUGE. He’s lovable and very vibrant. He often passes out on my floor with his eyes open. He likes to lick the lotion off my legs, which in turn give me hives, but I love him all the same.

On the human side of things, I have 3 room mates; Joy, Myla, and Brant. Joy is the “owner” of the house. She’s 24, a financial analyst for Ernst & Young, and awesome. We get along great. Myla is an aspiring actress from Colorado who teaches yoga on the side. I’m not really sure what that means, but that’s what I know. Brant is a guy. I don’t know anything about him other than the fact that he’s from Michigan and cuts his bangs occasionally over the sink in our bathroom, which is… annoying. They’re pretty cool overall. My room is a lot bigger than last summer so I have a nice big bed, which I appreciate a lot. The house is cozy and in a quiet neighborhood. There’s always parking, flowers, and a nice little back yard to chase Alaska in.

I have found that if you look hard enough anywhere you can find a good deal for a great place. People always go on and on about how expensive everything is, but I think they just don’t look hard enough or they don’t realize the difference between a scam and a great deal. Why don’t people get it?

From conversations with Joy, her parents and her are looking to sell the house so it doesn’t look like I’ll be able to live here if I decide to move out here next summer. We’ll see. πŸ™‚

A few weeks ago, I suddenly had a craving for flan… and I wasn’t in the mood to go find some so I made it myself. It came out pretty well except that I didn’t let it cool for long enough so it didn’t hold its shape as well as it should have. The next one I made (the following day) I left in the refrigerator overnight so it came out awesome. πŸ™‚

Flan

It was truly delicious.

P.S. I sent this photo to my uncle. He was ecstatic to discover that I hadn’t become a whale since I saw him 2 years ago. Not even a cow, a whale.

Posted in Beginnings, Education, Ketchup at 7:57 pm by nedbun

I am beginning to realize how much work this is going to be… but I’ll do my best to catch up before the summer is over (I’m starting to freak out at how close that is).

Work

Working at All Access Staging & Productions has been pretty kick ass. I came in to a very welcoming atmosphere where I was given responsibilities pretty quickly and tested on many skill levels. I feel that, despite the opinion of many, my education has prepared me immensely for this job. The high-paced environment and wealth of knowledge that needs to be at hand at any given time is something that I’ve been trained to do very well at CMU. It’s incredible when I think about where I would be if it weren’t for all the advancements and growth I’ve made since I started school.

All Access

The front of the building is ornamented with a giant aluminum sculpture, that which they call the “Madonna Tree.” It was pretty predictable since I had already visited Tait Towers and seen the “landscaping” there, although I have to admit I like this better.

The company is divided between two buildings; Fabrication & Operations and Rentals. My “office” is in this building, which is the main building for the company. The small upstairs portion of the building houses the accounting department and the CEO’s, Clive Forrester, office. Clive, who is a Brit, is pretty awesome and very personable. He’s the kind of guy you want to work for. Also, as a side note, he has a treadmill set into the floor under his desk, as do several of those who work in the accounting department. It’s kind of odd to think of it at first, but it’s pretty cool if you’re into that kind of thing.

My Desk

Anyway, downstairs in the main building are two designated set-up areas, storage, the shop floor, and the production offices where my “office” is. This summer I got my own company computer although I don’t have my own version of Vectorworks… just a viewer, which sucks in a time crunch, but I don’t like Vectorworks anyway…

Of course, I decorated my desk with some Married to the Sea comics, my Adam West photo, and two of my favorite albums. I won’t lie, most of these are recycled from last summer.Β (BY THE WAY, that is my snazzy new polka dot lunchbox! I have been looking for a good lunchbox for a while now. There it is. No more plastic bag lunches for me!)

I’ve had plenty to do from day one. A week into my internship, one of my bosses went on vacation for 2 weeks… It was a little odd to have the shift in command happen so quickly, but it really gave me a chance to get to know all the guys on the shop floor and everyone else in the building that I may need to talk to. These days, I’m pretty much BFF with everyone. Mostly because I understand what everyone does and I’ve actually done a lot of the work these guys are doing myself at some point. It’s great to have hands on knowledge. I realize more and more that an alarming number of the higher ups in this industry don’t have that on their belt. Thanks, CMU.

Among things that have ended up on my desk so far; Relocating the cutting and cleaning departments, The Black Eyed Peas, Chris Isaak, Chris Cornell, Lil’ Wayne, Keri Hilson, American Idol, Nickelback, No Doubt, Red Bull, Monster, Ne-Yo, Journey, Toby Keith, & Kenny Chesney. I’m sure I’m forgetting some, but those are the ones I remember off the top of my head.

So far, I love working at All Access. It’s odd because they don’t really have project managers at all, which I think is largely why I’ve been accepted so quickly. I’m doing quite well. We’ll see how it goes for the remainder of my time. I’m not sure if this is the job I want to stay with after I graduate, but the connections to Production Management on tours is definitely there if I choose to take that route. All in all, great decision and an even better learning experience.

Traffic to and from work isn’t too bad. It’s not nearly as bad as everyone was telling me it was going to be. I usually get up around 6:00 am and am out of the house a little before 7:00 am so I don’t have to rush if I hit some minor traffic. It usually takes me about 45 minutes to get to work and an hour to get home mostly because going to work I’m going against traffic for most of the way, but that is definitely not the case when I’m coming home. I do, however, get to pass a pretty great landmark on the way home every day;

Bad News Bears

It makes me smile every time.

Traffic

Even when I do catch traffic, it’s not too bad. I really like the landscape here so I often just space out or take pictures of the scenery. It’s quite the sight. At least I think so.

At the end of the day, when I get home I feel like I actually did work and that my time wasn’t wasted, which is really great. I love that.

It has been a wonderful summer. Thank God.

July 6, 2009

Ketchup, not mustard.

Posted in Beginnings, Ketchup at 1:17 am by nedbun

Going back to six weeks ago…

Cheeseburger

My refreshed face after a long and gruesome semester. πŸ™‚

I arrive at the quaint Burbank airport after a long day of travel and what felt like 5 minutes worth of packing on the fly. I felt jittery and a little overwhelmed to be back in Los Angeles although I had been here to visit for New Years 4 months ago. I wasn’t sure whether I was excited or nervous. Probably both.

Getting picked up at the airport is awesome especially when you’re really tired. It was unexpectedly easy to adjust to seeing Tony again, although I will admit that his initial reaction to seeing me after 4 months was less than optimal. However, my unbearable hunger aided in deterring any semblance of an argument for the time being.

In-n-Out Burger is delicious.

I was sort of bummed out that the weather wasn’t better when I arrived as I was highly anticipating a much needed trip to the beach, but soon the rest of my plans would start to unravel as well. My trip to Vegas with Stephanie, which was supposed to commence two days after my arrival in Los Angeles, was halted by car trouble and a gut feeling that something was going to go wrong that day. I was bummed out because I wanted to celebrate my 21st birthday with Stephanie in the appropriate place, but alas it will have to wait until later. I think it was kind of a blessing in disguise because not being in Vegas made it easier for me to deal with the newly destroyed plans I had made for a car.

Not having a car in LA is like not having a Metro card and not being able to afford a cab in New York City; daunting and highly irritating. I will admit that I felt a little trapped not to mention that the geniuses that were supposed to move out the Sunday prior to me moving in had conveniently lost their living arrangement thus preventing me from moving in on time and in a comfortable manner. Needless to say I was very upset and my back was paying the price.

Eventually, things took a turn for the better when I finally moved in, but I still didn’t have a car. I ended up driving around with my Dad’s old friend’s brother’s good friend… eventually I got a car, but as much as I tried to avoid it I ended up renting a car for the first few days of work because the paperwork was taking too long. I did, however, get a great deal on a 2001 Toyota Corolla with 48,000 miles on it. I know it sounds like a scam, but it’s true and it was worth the agony because now my brother, Glenn, will end up with a car, which makes this a much better investment. Maybe it wasn’t worth the agony, but it’s a great car. The engine and interior are immaculately clean (are you surprised I bought it?), it gets great gas mileage (huge plus in LA and really anywhere these days), and it drives like a charm. I think the Davids would be proud of what I ended up with.

The agonizing seed

Glenn's Seed.

The DMV in California is EXPONENTIALLY better than the DMV in New Jersey. Seriously, it’s unbelievable. I would say try it for yourself, but nobody actually ever goes to the DMV voluntarily.

Once my car was in order, things calmed down a lot. Work was a lot less stressful, although I unfortunately got scammed pretty badly by the rental car company. I should have said something, but I didn’t.

Tomorrow I’ll get into my first days at work, my concerns for the “metal” genre, my room mates, Michael Jackson, French-dipped sandwiches, Malibu, and the 4th of July. I know, you’re thrilled. Β πŸ™‚

June 20, 2009

It starts…

Posted in Beginnings tagged at 7:11 pm by nedbun

So, I know for those of you who have known me longer than others that it seems a little unlike me to start a blog, but I have realized over the past week that I often let things pass me by without really taking the time to absorb them. Thus I have decided that I should really write more about the things that I do and take more pictures because soon I won’t be able to remember and cherish the tiny details of my “fruitful youth.”

Here I am in my last secure summer between years of higher education, and frankly I’m terrified. Thinking about being a senior in college and graduating with a degree is pretty crazy. Sitting at work yesterday I realized all that I had done and how hard I had worked to get this job for the summer. I essentially got hired by a company that wasn’t hiring for a position they’ve never had before. It’s unbelievable how fast I made the switch from persistently asking to settling in at my new desk at All Access. I am just now realizing how crazy this all is and how far I’ve really come.

Aside from my vast epiphanies about how I got to this point in life and how I feel about it, I’ve begun to genuinely feel like I might want to move to Los Angeles after I graduate… It’s not a thought I was willing to entertain last summer, but the more time I spend here the more I feel at home. I suppose it was bound to happen wherever I went. Regardless of the fact that there is no humidity I think the overall attitude and atmosphere here is different enough for me to like being the odd one out.

I often think about why it is that I never get homesick, but I can never think of a real answer. Maybe it’s because I love to travel so the thought of feeling at home in several places is nice.

I feel confident though that no matter where I end up a year from now I’ll be happy. I’m starting to see it clearly in several of my classmates, too. This summer especially has been an extraordinary achievement for many of us. Perseverance was abundant and brought much success to those around me in many ways, which makes me feel even more Β proud of what we have all accomplished.

I’m feeling like myself again for the first time in a great while. It’s nice to be back. πŸ™‚

I’ll make posts about the last month’s worth of events soon. Hopefully writing about it won’t bring back the frustration.