Thursday, September 3, 2009

Washington Wednesday Walkabout

I may try to post additional pictures to accompany this entry since I don't really have enough images, but any new ones will not be related to the first batch.

Early September sky over Washington, D.C., 2:13PM, September 2, 2009

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Well, once again I had intended to update this blog with a longer entry but instead I updated my other blog. I am really sorry about that since it is not my intention to ignore my Regulus blog, which is where the bulk of my half dozen regular readers are ... The pictures in this entry were taken earlier on Wednesday and are posted in no particular order.

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The lobby of the Willard Intergalactic Intercontinental Hotel here in Washington, D.C., Sept. 2, 2009.

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As for my day, I actually got up at 630AM and finished that memo on Obama's nuclear non-proliferation by 945AM. I was going to go back to sleep but instead I spent the afternoon with Chris T., who took the day off from work. We first went to lunch at Subway on 17th Street, NW, and then we walked downtown to McPherson Square to an ice cream and sandwich shop and then to Pershing Park at the intersection of 15th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, across from the Willard Intercontinental Hotel.

Here is a picture of the fountain in Pershing Park near the White House. That water was pea green nasty, a sort of science experience run amok. There were ducks bathing in it frenetically for a while -- splashing and shaking and flapping their wings and quacking. I guess they like even skanky - smelly water.

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Thereafter, we went, as noted, to the Willard Intercontinental Hotel and sat at their outdoor cafe and had an iced tea. I should point out that Chris paid for the ice cream shop and hotel cafe. Our "waitress" -- who was the hostess inside -- was completely unattentive, as was the outdoor waiter, who didn't wait on us because we hadn't initially ordered from him.

Also, I had had a very bad headache earlier and took a percocet that put in the following states, sequentially: relaxed, tranquil, whacked out, and then very tired and a bit dizzy.

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Here I am at the Willard hotel's outdoor cafe, Sept. 2, 2009. Yes, I wore a button down shirt, which I almost never do casually.

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As for dinner, that too was paid for me. In that case, I went with Gary to one of his weekly dinners with a friend of his, but the particulars are complicated to explain and perhaps it is easiest if I don't even try. The friend (who can afford it) always pays for whoever shows up in the group.

It is sometimes a group dinner that involves a specialized group of weather forecasters. The dinners are always at Mamma Lucia in Silver Spring. They were formerly held at the Parkway Deli in Silver Spring but apparently an "accident" involving a 350+ pound man in the party at the time who collapsed a chair and over whom tumbled a waiter with food necessitated a change in venue. I've never been sure I wholly believe that story.

Speaking of food and blob-dom, I have been eating a lot the past few days. I don't know why I'm so hungry. I don't even have that much food in my apt.

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Here was the scene by McPherson Square earlier in the afternoon yesterday, 2:10PM, Sept. 2, 2009

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Anyway, I rode back to Gary's place on Longfellow Street, NW, and then I walked the not quite 3 miles south on 16th Street, NW, back to my place near U Street. The walk took 55 minutes. All in all, I got in about 5 miles of walking today, which is good for someone like me who has become something of a lazy blob.

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Here is another view of the lobby of the Willard Intercontinental Hotel, Sept. 2, 2009. The term "lobbying" and "lobbyist" may or may not derive from its association with that hotel during the time of President Ulysses S. Grant. It isn't clear.

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Changing subjects, tomorrow (or rather later today), I'm going to Bethesda to my consulting company's office to pick up a check for $590, which along with the $360 loan from Phil equals $950 or just $3 shy of the total for my September rent. Yes, I can make up the $3 difference. I still have about $210 in bills and $120 to collection agencies to pay thereafter, but most of that is going to have to wait until mid to late September. I should be getting another $1730, but stretched out through early October.

The shopping center parking lot in Silver Spring near the Silver Spring Metro, the NOAA complex and the Blairs apartment complex at dusk, 7:50PM, Sept. 2,2009. There was a nearly full Moon rising in the southeast, not visible in this picture behind the buildings.

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This does not include the possibility of several hundred additional dollars from my planned return to tutoring ... yes, tutoring ... at UMCP in the athletic department. The lady who oversees it seemed to be overjoyed when I called up and she said she is going to try to get me $15/hr rather than $12/hr I was earning the last time. I said I could do two nights a week, totaling about 7 hours a week.

Ultimately, the big issue will be if I can afford my October and November rent OUTRIGHT, not to mention other bills, esp. the other issue is I only have $500 to my name right now. This excludes the $950 I should have by tomorrow that needs to go to my rent.

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The 1500 block sign of Upshur Street, NW, at 16th Street, NW. This area used to have a strong Mr. Sirius association.

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This morning -- yes, this morning -- I walked to the McDonald's for an egg and cheese biscuit, and as I went past the building I used to live, I saw someone had been evicted. Seeing a person's life possessions strewn out like that on the sidewalk is a very jarring and disturbing experience, no matter how much "fault" they have in allowing a situation to get that bad. The building was the Harrowgate, which is where I used to live. It is at 1833 New Hampshire Ave., NW. I am now in the 2000 block of New Hampshire Ave., NW.

The Harrowgate used to be a William C. Smith & Co., managed property before it was sold (when I lived there) to Keener Management. The building I am currently in is still a William C. Smith & Co., building.

No, this isn't the Harrowgate. This is the exterior of part of the Willard Intercontinental Hotel here in D.C. on Sept. 2, 2009. That flag is the hotel's banner. The other part of the building had the U.S., D.C., Maryland and Virginia flags -- and, as often happens, the Maryland flag was being flown upside down inadvertently. It old the concierge desk about this.

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One last dire financial situation item: it turns out I am already late on student loan payments, in particular to Citibank, but I am taking out economic hardship deferments, or if not, forbearances. Regardless, there isn't the slightest chance I'll be paying ANY student loans for months to come. True, they cannot be discharged outright in bankruptcy (chapter 7) but my long term plan (for next August) is to do a chapter 13. I owe just under $87,000 to Citibank and $120,000 in a consolidated Direct Loan or $207,000 -- far above the $138,500 that is supposed to be the "global" limit on Stafford loans. I was able to zoom this far over the limit because of a consolidation that opened up so much new principal.

That someone in my situation could borrow so much is a testament to other issues with our country but I'm going to refrain from that. I will say I still want to move to New Zealand or Australia.

In any event, I have far bigger financial and personal living arrangement worries that are much more pressing than stupid student loan bullshit.

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Screen shot of Dorothy Zbornak (Bea Arthur) of The Golden Girls in the episode "Room 7."

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Turning to other bullshit, namely, the D.C. area weather, we are in one of our prolonged shitty D.C. dry spells, only this one is synoptic scale of a vapid September sort rather than t-storms all around that miss the District of Columbia, or at least the stupid DCA rain bucket.

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A few of my friends are off to France for 10 days. They are actually supposed to meet Kristof, who is visiting them from London.

Speaking of Kristof, here is the building called the Pershing House at 16th Street and Spring Road (and (not to be confused with the earlier mentioned Pershing Park) where he used to live. That top left corner apartment used to be his. To adapt a movie title, "Kristof doesn't live here anymore ..." Boo.

I think that's all for now. I have been watching Cheers at these this late hour.

My next planned update is for over the weekend.

--Regulus

13 comments:

krzysztof said...

That was a big apartment even if somewhat rundown. Oh well

к.нео.физ.де.му said...

you do look a bit sleepy in that picture - under the influence of percocet. still, you look good in the button down shirt - you should wear them more often.

as you might know, boris is going to college next year, and college park is one of the places he is looking at.

would be interesting if you are still involved there in some capacity...

btw, do you know if krzysztof has any plans of coming back here?

Regulus said...

Kristof -- Do you miss that apartment? I thought you preferred D's in Arlington.

Kristof -- Well, at this point, I might just be there this semester as a very part time tutor. I rather my path and Noris's path would cross.

Yes, Kristof is most definitely coming back. His immigration is going forward. Ironically, he is trying to finish at least one journal article while in England at his institution before he has to come back. You see, his U.S. former/future employer is still paying for part of his immigration and once the paperwork reaches a certain stage, he may have to come back.

к.нео.физ.де.му said...

nah, i guess i have to respond here, rather than through gmail...

oh, well...

i hope krzysztof does not mind coming back...

Regulus said...

nah, i guess i have to respond here, rather than through gmail...

I don't understand what you're saying.

к.нео.физ.де.му said...

i am saying this - i get all the follow up comments to your blog entries as e-mails in my gmail inbox.

the same way i am getting them if there is a new message posted to a google group for example, that i belong to.

now, i can reply to the message in the google group either at the group website or replying directly from gmail.

i thought i might be able to do the same with your blob, i.e. answer to it directly in gmail, so it gets posted as a comment to your blog.

but it didn't work - because it is set up that way either by you or by some inherent google blog thingy...

as it is, this issue is rather inconsequential... :)

krzysztof said...

By the end of the month I'l pay a fee for immigrant visa processing (thankfuly, not too high). I guess as long as bills keep coming I guess the process is alive:-)

I liked my apartment even though I wasn't spending much time there for the final few years

к.нео.физ.де.му said...

hey, arcturus!

i just realized that i can show pix too...

here is me and two of my friends near nags head, nc two weeks ago.

you can also find galina and mark there...

:)

lovely me

Regulus said...

Mike -- Can I post pics 33 and 34 on my blog? Ha ha. They are wonderful. Or do you think those other two would mind? Who were those guys? Does it feel good to look and be in that much better shape than the world around you? I personally am not gifted that way.

Kristof -- Check out those pics that Mike G posted.

к.нео.физ.де.му said...

i am sure they don't care.

actually the guy up front has been on a diet and biking regiment - i believe he lost about 30 pounds since march.

arcturus,

the trick is not to be in better shape - it's to know which side to turn to the camera!

:)

did you see mark on 78 at the jockey ridge? if i remember correctly you, galina, boris, artem (boris' friend) and i visited the park together in i don't recall which year...

Regulus said...

I will look at the pics again. No, I can't remember what year that was, either. It may have been 2002 or 2003.

krzysztof said...

OMG Mike, how did you do that? I have gmail too and that's how blogger recognizes my name (as long as I'm logged on to gmail at the same time) but I don't get follow up comments in my email and I don't know how to post a link in this comment section except by explicitly using html tags.

krzysztof said...

BTW, I believe Arcturus likes to be called Regulus on this blog. Which reminds me the following line from Frasier:

Niles: Anyway, I have to go. I have a multiple personality disorder workshop this afternoon and it takes me forever to fill out the nametags

ha ha ha:-)