Tag Archives: seattle

Seattle Clubbing

Saturday night we headed down to Seattle to hit up some clubs. We rented a hotel room downtown so no one would have to drive home afterwards (well Aleem hooked us up with a room). We got a great room on the 29th floor of the Crowne Plaza right in the heart of downtown. We got a few odd looks when 7 of us piled into an elevator with a gas can. We pre-drank for a while (a gas can and 2 bottles of wine), received 2 noise complaints, and then 10 of us headed to a club. The theme for the night was supposed to be lost and confused, so we distributed the room keys amoungst us and prepared for a wild night.

We arrived at the Last Supper Club in Pioneer Square just before midnight. We then drank and danced until 1:30 when the bar closed. Then we bitched and complained about the early bar closure as we walked back to our hotel room, in one group – miserably failing to get lost and confused. We finished off our alcohol and then tried to find room to sleep, leading to much amusement.

After losing an hour to the time change, we drove down to IHOP for breakfast. It was my second post-drinking IHOP trip, but this time I was less sick and a lot more hungry. I finished off a belgian waffle, side of hashbrowns, and 6 pieces of french toast, and a bit of Aleem’s meal. Stupid dares seemed to be the entertainment as Aleem proceeded to snort sugar through a straw, and Tyler ate the rest of Aleem’s omlette with his bare hands.

Anyway, this was the first event I took my camera to, so I’ve uploaded all the pictures. Unfortunately my battery died and my memory card filled up (I know I need a bigger one) Saturday night, so I have no pictures of Sunday morning. Although I did get some hillarious shots with my regular camera. Here are the digital pictures.

GoreTex Pants – Don’t Leave Home Without Them

The weather here has finally returned to the normal for this region – rain, rain, and more rain. It’s been drizzling off and for the past few days and the forecast for the next week is nothing but rain.

I can live with the drizzle, but yesterday I got caught biking home in a downpour. The worst part was I have a great pair of GoreTex pants I got for Christmas just for an occasion like this, but I left them at home. So, now they’re in my backpack and they’re staying there until I need them. As much as I enjoy coming home and peeling off sopping wet underwear, I think I’d rather stay dry next time.

I’ve been biking to work fairly regularly for the past two weeks. I’ve managed to clock 80 km on my nifty bike computer. The ride to work is 3.75 km and it takes me 15 minutes to get to work and 9 minutes to get home most evenings. The hill is both a blessing and a curse.

On Saturday I went curling with Greg and Graeme (Sarah was too busy being sick). It was a Canada American Society event at the Granite Curling Club in Seattle. I’m not sure what was more shocking, that the Granite is the only curling club in the Pacific Northwest USA (and a rundown club at that) or that for the majority of Canadians in attendance it was their first time curling! Maybe coming from curling-happy Manitoba I take these things for granted. There’s over 20 curling clubs in Winnipeg. Anyway, curling was fun. Although I was expecting a more organized and competitive event, it was a good chance for Graeme and Greg to learn how to curl. I think they enjoyed it.

And I had a good time talking to some ex-pats. They seemed surprised that I was adamant about wanting to work in Canada once I graduated. But it’s something I’ve thought about, and after living in the States, I know now more then ever that Canada is where I want to be. Not that I’m not enjoying myself, I’m having a blast. But when I think of the place where I want to eventually settle down and raise a family, it’s Canada. Ok, maybe it’s just not the States, I might consider somewhere overseas. There’s just parts of American society right now that I read about in the papers and it makes me sick. It’s too bad really, because most Americans I talk to seem so progressive, tolerant, and fed up with the general trends in American politics and society.

In other news, the newest member of the Porter tech family, is a tiny little Canon Powershot SD300 digital camera bought with birthday money and my Microsoft salary. Now that I have no more excuses, expect pictures up soon.

“One thing I know about the rest of my life, I’ll know that I’ll be living it in Canada” Sloan – The Rest of my Life

Birthday post

Well I’m officially 22. Today was a a great day. I haven’t been in such a positive state of mind for a while.

I started the day off with a bike ride to the gym and a good hard work out. Then I hit the showers and headed to work. Some birthday elves visited my office the night before hung Happy Birthday streamers from the ceiling and toilet-papered my chair and computer. How cute.

I had a meeting with Stacey (the Microsoft Intern coordinator for Waterloo) in the afternoon. We talked about how my job’s been going so far and future job opportunities at Microsoft. Right now, I think I’m going to use my last work term to get a job elsewhere, but the great part is I don’t have to decide for a while. I can interview with another group at Microsoft sometime in the next few weeks, hopefully convince them and my current group to offer me a job, then go through co-op this summer and decide then if I want something new or if I want to return to Microsoft. Sounds like an ideal situation to me.

At around 4:00, work turned into a zoo, as an unscheduled beer bash broke out (the developers must have met a code milestone). A mini-golf tournament took place throughout the hallways on my floor. I didn’t participate, but I made a few obstacles in the hallways outside my office with my birthday streamers. I only had time for a quick drink before Sarah() and Greg() arrived to pick me up for dinner.

We met Graeme() in Bellevue for a birthday dinner at a nice Mexican restaurant. After dinner, we hit the Apple Store and had typing races with Spongebob Square Pants teaches typing. I’m a brutal typist. I could only do 30 WPM, and my accuracy sucked (you’d never know I type all day for a living). Sarah hit 98 WPM and Graeme is the king, at a unhuman 102 WPM. Spongebob almost bust a nut when he saw that.

Then the highlight of the night, Sarah and Greg got me Ticket To Ride for my birthday. We proceeded back to my place for a game. A quick synopsis: Greg started building railway lines on the west coast, Sarah built the a trans-Canadian railway, spanning from Vancouver to Montreal, Graeme built his rail empire in the east coast, connecting Toronto, New York, and Boston. And I cut across the middle going from LA to Chicago. The only real drama was when Sarah and I teamed up to prevent Greg from connecting his rail line from Seattle to Vancouver, and then Graeme screwed over Sarah twice when he built rail lines around Toronto. In the end, I came out on top, after taking the longest rail line, and completing a lot of long stretches. Graeme was one turn away from completing a long stretch that would have made the score close.

So in synopsis, my day included an early moring workout, a short, but positive, day of work, dinner with friends, and a night of board games. The perfect birthday. Thanks gang.

Sushi Party

Last night Thinh (a Microsoft Intern) hosted a sushi party at his place – $10 for all you can eat sushi.

Most of the people in attendance were at the wild party the night before, so it was a pretty subdued bunch. The bottle of saki on the table went untouched for the most of the night, as people decided to nursed glasses of water instead.

The sushi was excellent and there were mountains of it. Thinh was cooking up a storm. I have no clue what was in most of it, but I know it ranged from the safe (vegetable rolls), to the common (salmon and tuna rolls), to the wild(eel and octopus). I stayed away from the wild. I felt better at the time, but I didn’t want to push my stomach too far. About 30 people showed up and we all ate a lot of sushi (I think Greg mentioned he lost count around 60) and there was still a lot left when we were done.

The best part was hearing stories about the night before. By the end of Friday night 7 people had puked, so I wasn’t the only one having trouble keeping my liquor down. I also got to see lots of pictures people had on their digital cameras. There are some disturbing ones of me wrestling Nihar for my shirt and guzzling from the gas can. Look for those on MicrosftInternsGoneWild.com.

There was also some interesting conversations about Japanese culture and some of the weird fetishes people their have. Supposedly you can buy used panties in vending machines there. Speaking of those wacky Japanese, I ran across this today. Toyota is showcasing a bunch of robots at Expo 2005 in Japan right now. Man those are wacky looking. What gets me is that that big looking one with the tiny little man sitting in it is designed to help people with disabilities get around and climb stairs. But the thing is like 12 feet high. I’d think that would cause more accessibility problems than it would fix.

In other news, turns out I wasn’t the only Porter puking on Friday night. Kelsey was also loosing her lunch, but she thinks someone slipped something in her drink. Maybe that’s what happened to me too? I better be careful next time. And you better watch out too.

Jose Cuervo is not my friend

It’s been a busy week. I’ll do my best to keep this concise. Right now my goal is to make it through this post without hurling.

Monday night we celebrated indiglo_i‘s birthday at a really nice sushi restaurant in Seattle. I got Greg a pedometer for his birthday – it seemed like a good idea given his attachment to creepy night walks and walking in general. I think he likes it, but I’m not sure if he’s got it working yet. To feed his geek needs, I found one that has a USB cable for uploading his step counts into his computer.

Wednesday sarahrowe and I spent the evening playing board games at Jason’s house. Jason is one of the guys we met while playing boggle at the MSN Search Launch party last week. We played Ticket to Ride and Hex. I wasn’t crazy about Hex, but Ticket to Ride was great.

Thursday night was a double dose of Survivor, as our little clique (indiglo_i, sarahrowe, and myself) got caught up with the last two survivor episodes we had missed. Every week we have been trying to predict the show’s outcomes and assigning points for correctness. After 5 episodes the standings are:

  1. Sarah – 155 pts
  2. Greg – 130 pts
  3. Me – 85 pts

Last night I went to a St. Paddy’s/Gustavo’s Birthday/Nodira’s Birthday Party. In typical Microsoft intern fashion, there were like 30 guys and 6 girls. Two gas cans made an appearance thanks to our good friend Tyler. And I proceeded to get tanked. The poison of choice was beer, punch, sangria, and tequila. My memory is a little spotty, but from what I’ve pieced together the highlights include: showing people my nipples, taking of my shirt and swinging it above my head, screaming “Carpe Diem”, and puking in the sink, toilet, and rose bushes.
After the party, I was too drunk to ride my bike home, so I crashed at Sarah’s place with Greg (who was too drunk to drive his car). I started sleeping on the couch, then fell asleep next to the toilet (I have no memory of this, but they have pictures), and then found an empty bed where I spent the rest of the night.

This morning Greg, Sarah, and I headed down to the IHOP with intentions of settling our stomachs with loads of greasy pancakes. I was only able to eat two pieces of toast and a quarter of my belgian waffle. But on a positive note, I’ve managed to keep it all down so far.

Whirly Ball and Drunked Jenga

Wednesday night we had an intern event – WhirlyBall. I was really psyched beforehand because it looked like the coolest sport in the world – a little bit of lacrosse mixed with basketball and played in bumper cars. It sounded too good to be true. And it was.

First, the bumper cars were too slow (they need bumper cars like the ones they have in Cuba – man those can move!). And they gave penalties for rear ending other cars and whacking people with your racket, so in the end the team which won was the one which got less penalties. So, if there were faster cars and fewer penalties then maybe it would have lived up to my expectations.

The other crappy part was Casey got a ball in the eye during the first game. Which wasn’t a big deal. It swelled up a bit, and she had to put some ice on it. But she insisted she needed to be taken to the hospital (she was worried about a scratched cornia from a whiffle ball). Greg, being the overly nice guy he is, drove her and missed the rest of the event. Had I been the driver, I would have told her to suck it up, put some ice on it, and quit wasting people’s time with her hypochondria.

I was really peeved that she made such a fuss about it. I just find it annoying when people clog emergency rooms with minor bumps and bruises.

With our chauffeur on ambulance duty, Sarah and I had to find alternate arrangements to make it to the MSN Search Launch Party in downtown Seattle. Luckily Aleem (twisted ankle and all) agreed to drive us to a bus stop. We had to race to catch the bus and ended up cutting it off and boxing it in when it pulled up to a stop, so Sarah and I could get out of the car and onto the bus. That was exciting.

The launch party was lots of fun. A swanky downtown club, free food, open bar, and 200 of the nerdiest people you’ll ever meet. The band sucked (sounded a lot like the B52s which is great, but not fun to dance to), so we ended up chilling on some couches away from the dance floor. Luckily there was lots of alternate entertainment. Mainly a fortune teller, palm reader, and a lipsologist (not sure what that was all about). We also managed to find a bunch of brand new board games sitting out on a table. So, we spent our evening getting plastered on fancy drinks and playing Jenga and Boggle. A perfect evening in my books.

Editor’s Note: Turns out Casey isn’t a hypochondriac after all, and I’m a big loser. I found out later that she has some retina condition that needs attention and she was worried when she was hit by the ball. Luckily, I was right in the end that nothing was wrong (for her sake more than mine). Casey – I’m sorry

My Seattle Trip by Kelsey Porter

Things have quited down here now. My sister left on Thursday morning. I hope she had a good time in nerdland.

Before she left I asked her to write a quick synopsis of her trip for my lj. I was expecting something like:

So, like, my brother invited me to come visit his place in Seattle. So, I went during my reading week. I was so stoked about snowboarding and it was like so fun. But then I had to come home, and I was like “bummer dude”

But to my surprise, I got this amusing account of her visit. I’ve highlighted the relevant parts.

My Seattle Trip by Kelsey Porter