Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Finally an Urchin?

My Valentine from Ryan and Mariana!
First of all I want to let the world know that I have the best friends a guy can have.  You all are so supportive and that's what continues to push me forward.  It's all about the little thing's that you all do and I really need to let you all know that I appreciate all of it!

This past week I've teched the SMALLEST snowboard and ski's.  The kids are about the size of the kids to the right.  They can barely walk!  I also am starting to get families that remember me at the rental shop and come to me specifically because of the past experiences they've had with me and it's a good feeling.

Goggle tan

I've continued practicing my snowboarding but I needed some feedback.  I had no idea what I was doing so I decided to take another free class last Friday.  I've been having trouble with my toe edge of my board but literally 2 little notes and I was carving down the mountain.

Tip 1: lean your crotch in carrying the weight of your hip toward your toe edge.

Tip 2:  While gaining more speed bend your knee's to bring your center of gravity lower helping you turn easier and on balance.

After those tips I was pretty much on my own exploring and getting used to using both of my edge.

First blue run
If you take a look at the video below it'll give you a rough summary of where I am at in my snowboarding.  Not the greatest but I know enough to have a good time.

I didn't get a picture but I was
on the jumbotron!
New seat
Last night housing set up an event to go to the Nuggets game.  I had an amazing time.  Tim, Mike and I ended up sneaking onto the 100 level to watch the game. We were located in a VIP section so we had someone taking food and drink orders for us.  Since everyone else stayed in the 300 level seats I decided to order drinks for Brooke and Dillon from my lovely 100 level seat.  I ended up delivering the drinks myself but my point was still made. Everyone had no idea where we were sitting until they saw me on the jumbotron and I got some epic dancing in but unfortunately I wasn't quick enough to take a picture but hell it was AWESOME.  During the game I didn't really look at the score.  I'm sure part of the reason was the beverages I had consumed before and during the game.  I had a terrific time yelling at players and watching some good basketball with the occasional slow clap.  We made friends with everyone we sat by and I even ended up buying drinks for the gentlemen pictured below.
Old seat
Face tan
seat buddies
From our seats!
This weeks Jesus Cookies

Monday, February 17, 2014

My Love Life and Other Thing's

I'm sure some of you are reading this blog due to my romantic conquests from my past such as, but not limited to, Highway Girl, Library Girl, Vending Machine Girl, or even the infamous Thai Girl.  You might even be one of these lovely ladies that I've elegantly nicknamed. 

In the past week I have acquired 3 phone numbers.  You must also be thinking, "Don you're not going to be in Colorado for that long, why even look?" and my answer to that is, "you never know, you pessimistic prick... just kidding, but seriously". I'll be giving a full summary of my past week and throw in each "encounter" as they come up chronologically but you should know upfront,  these are not love stories.

Tuesday at work was a nice slow day, as most weekdays are, and my coworker Ryan came into the rental shop on his day off with his girlfriend and her friend.  Let's call that friend "Argentina Girl".  I thought Argentina Girl was cute and I helped her put on her snowboard boots.  The encounter didn't last for too long but I hoped to see her again once they returned their rentals. It did help to know that she stored her shoes in our break room so I knew she would be coming back.

As the day at work was coming to an end I was transferred across the hall to retail since I hadn't had the experience yet.  I thought, "there goes my chance to see Argentina Girl" but as I was restocking merchandise in the store I turned around and there she was!  We spoke with each other for a little bit until my boss came in and then she lost interest and left.  My boss immediately apologized for his unintentional cock block.

As we were closing I was sent off to pick up carts outside that guest's had taken to move their skis to and from their cars.  As I was stacking these carts there she was! I spoke with her and immediately asked if I could call her sometime.  Unfortunately when I dialed it into my phone I forgot to save it. #DonDumb

The next night though was Wednesday Ladies Night and I was psyched because I didn't know of any other place I could go out to dance.  I went out with a bunch of the guys and Brooke.  It felt like old times.  The night was great but most of what went on was more "you had to be there" kind of moments.  Anyway, 12:20am rolled around and Brooke was leaving and was rallying the troops but I decided to ditch them and wait for the 1:30am bus to hang out with some of the other guys at the bar and that's when it happened. I saw this cute girl next to me, let's call her Ladies Night Girl.  I never saw her before but opened with this line, "don't you work at Copper?" That prompted her to start talking about how she was from the midwest and then we found that "connection".  She asked for my number and said she would give me a call if she was ever in town.  Before she left she said, "My boyfriend and I will probably make it out there soon." Terrific...  Well I guess new friends?

The tubing hill.
Friday was the start of an awesome but long Holiday weekend.  Brooke and Dillon invited me out to tubing Friday night for my first time ever. Fortunately and unfortunately there were only about 10 people on the tubing hill so we couldn't make massive links down the slopes but there was no wait to go down. It was definitely a good time though and the few drinks didn't hurt either.  After tubing we hit up a bar and Brooke and I had a heart to heart and really caught up for the first time since my arrival at Copper.

We then took the bus to the sushi place and our group got separated somehow but I bought Dillon and I a shot and then left back to the Edge to see if I could find everyone else. I then ran into Brooke and they were on their way to a hot tube at one of the local hotels.  It was an amazing site.  The hot tube was outside with a clear sky overlooking the snow peaked mountains and that ended my Friday night.

Saturday was the real start of hell at work!  It was just mega busy where we had people from other departments come and help due to the surplus of people for the holiday weekend.  I was on boot duty with a man named Ben.  I believe he is from Australia so I instantly found talking to him interesting.  He got boots for one girl that said she fit in a kids size 2 shoe but she was at least 5 feet tall,  It was crazy! Let's call her Fun Size Girl.  I ended up teching her skis for her.  I won't lie, I wanted to give her adult skis since she was technically a woman and she was tall enough to have them.  As I was trying to fit her boot in the ski I realized that the adjustable ski couldn't get that small in boot size and I already rented the skis out to her!  I had to get her new paper work but I was adamant about getting her adult skis so I got her another pair of skis but same thing went wrong.  I'm seriously running all over the place because I had to run to get new skis and new paper work.  The only reason I was happy doing it because she was joking around with me throughout the entire process. I know somewhere in that conversation we talked about her difficulty in finding shoes and how she wondered how stilettos felt and I had to tell her I hope she doesn't ever get that feeling because that means they make stilettos for children. Finally, on the 3rd try I got skis to fit her boots.  They were girls polka dotted skis,  they were adorable and she swore to me that she would rock them.  

First run in Colorado.
Later on I was on returns for skis and there she was, Fun Size Girl.  She came up to my table enthusiastic and was insistent on how awesome she did and how jealous people were about her skis.  I couldn't help myself so I asked for her number and without a beat she gave it to me.

The next night I decided to go on my first run at Copper because I just felt great and I needed to start running again.  It was after work and snowing.  As you can see it was a padded down path of nice snow cushioning my strides as I glided through.  I stopped to take one photo with an actual camera this time.  It was beautiful out and I forgot how awesome it is to run in the snow while it was actually snowing.  The only bad part is that my quads are on fire due to the hilly terrain.

After my run I decided to give Fun Size Girl a call but her voice message box wasn't set up yet so I resorted to texting her instead.  We had a nice little text message conversation but at the end of our conversation she wanted to let me know that she's seeing someone and didn't want to lead me on but is up for making new friends.  I did appreciate the immediate honesty.  Unfortunately, it is what it is.

So for all those keeping score at home that's 0 - 3.

 Mini updates:
Life at the Edge: challenge accepted. 
Sunday's we get Jesus cookies from church people that walk around.

Who are you going to call? 

Monday, February 10, 2014


It has been exactly one week since I arrived here at Copper Mountain, CO. Wednesday night I had my phone interview. Thursday morning I started work. Yesterday was my first time snowboarding EVER!

I have decided that this blog entry will just be a bunch of pictures with blurbs so you may see the beauty I see everyday,  It's just breathtaking living here in Colorado.

My Walk to work every morning
It has been snowing nonstop since I arrived.  In the pictures it may not look like it's snowing, but it is.  The picture to the left you can see 3 men on a roof shoveling snow off the rooftop.  The picture to the right you can see me waxing ski's.  I have been fixing customer ski's/boards all week and I talk to them as if I have so much experience. 

Everyone at work is awesome and whenever customers bring their rented equipment in we have impromptu snowball fights in the store.  There are feuds brewing daily and you never know when someone will strike next.  I'm learning much in snowball warfare. Soon I will have to choose sides before I have no allies.

My first run: Green Acres.
Green Acre's was a nice easy run for my first time to ride.  I jumped onto a snowboarding lesson during my "ride break" (Yes, at work you have a choice to either take a lunch break or a extra long break so you can get some runs in for the day) and in the class there were two others and  Ironically I fixed up their boards for them. Yep, they were super surprised that this would be my first time boarding.  Today though I decided to try a green run and be a little more adventurous and test my "limits". I fell a lot especially on my first ride down the mountain (I counted like 10 times?).  The chair lift at Green Acres was super short so my expectations for green runs (beginner level) were the same. Instead of a 1 minute lift like Green Acres,  the Union Creek lift took at least 5 minutes to get to the end and ran MUCH faster. To the left you can see the Union Creek lift.   To the right I take a picture after a wipe out because... DAYYYYYAMNNNN.  I'm just waiting for my first big air to automatically make me awesome and to take on some Sky's.
First time seeing the sun hit the mountains and yes it was snowing where we were.

My roommate Ryan on our way home from work today.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

To Colorado We Go!

The drive out to Colorado was painful but that  was my own fault.  I received 3 hours of sleep the night before with 14 hours of driving ahead of me.  I was just WAY into writing that first blog! As I started my drive it was alright, the adrenaline kept me awake for the first 2-3 hours but then I started drowsing off.  I decided to exit and take a nap at a rest stop.  Nevada was just a terrible drive for me but  as soon as I got into Arizona I at least had something to look at, but still drowsy.  I figured out that the music was putting me to sleep so for the last 7-10 hours of my drive it was completely quiet.  

Fortunately, Utah is probably my favorite state to drive through and I made plenty of stops to look around  and take pictures and some with my friend Domo. I met some people at a stop taking pictures that were driving out from LA and left around the same time as I.  They took my “anything is possible!” picture and I was off again.  I initially planned on stopping in Arches National Park in Utah but soon decided against it due to my fatigue. when I finally made it to Colorado it was just gorgeous, so much snow and beautiful sites to see.  

At Copper Mountain I was welcomed by Brooke and I could barely stay awake going to her room so I made some updates on the facebook and then passed out. I heard I missed a pretty epic night at the bars that Monday night unfortunately.

The next morning I wasn't feeling too well from the day before so I was glad that it was still pretty relaxed.  The highlight of the night was meeting Mike and Carol who will soon be celebrating their 30 year anniversary!  They are originally from Arlington Heights, IL and they told me about some of their experiences and things I NEEDED to go see, such as the Beach Blanket Babylon in San Francisco.  Carol has worked at the mountain for the past 14 years as a bartender and Mike runs his own plumbing company.  These people are GREAT  and they have experienced a lot and have traveled whenever they have gotten the chance.

Yesterday I also got a mini tour of Copper and I'm really excited to start working,  get into my own “dorm” style room and be a ski bum for at least the next month.  Today I have my interview to work in rentals, so wish me luck.

Don out.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

The Eve of My New Adventure!

Purpose: I am writing this blog to be as honest as possible to you, my friends and family.  I hope to write an entry once a week, hopefully.

September 26th, 2010 doesn't seem so long ago when I drove from Palatine Illinois and arrived in Los Angeles on September 29th, 2010.  I moved here in pursuit of going into film and looked for ways to get involved and I believed acting would be my way in.

I've been lucky from the start.  Early October I was lucky enough to receive an audition to work at Disneyland throwing frisbee's for money,  yes thats a thing.  It was for the show ElecTRONica at California Adventure. The job was not only amazing and fun but it allowed me to pay for rent, buy food, and pay for acting classes along the way on 4-8 hours a week.  Ridiculous, I know. The show was only supposed to last for a few weeks at most but ended up going for a year and 8 months.

Once we knew the show was coming to an end I started looking for work elsewhere a few months out from the end of the show.  I applied every chance I got.  I was to the point where I would bike around my neighborhood and apply in store.  I made an effort to apply to a few places every day.  I did get hired very part time at the Art Zone, a children's art studio (Art Zone bag to right), and as a tutor but it was just not enough for me to stay.   It was November 2012 when I was a few days away from moving back to Illinois when I received a call to work as a behaviorist at a middle school.  I of course ended up staying.     Now I had 1 full-time job and 2 part time jobs. Soon life consisted of just work, eat, and sleep.

The summer of 2013 came and I decided to work at a summer camp as a camp councilor at Camp Wasewagan. It was a fun experience but it didn't get me any closer to my goal.  At this point I was drifting away from my true purpose and what I truly wanted to do with my life.

Once the school year of 2013 arrived I was back working as a behaviorist drifting farther and farther away from my goals.  Do not get me wrong, I love working with students but the job made me feel somewhat terrible because whenever I made any progress with a student I felt like all the work I did get's torn down when the student get's home.  I realized in a phone conversation with my friend Brooke about my current state and I reflected on how my life was going which is what I exactly needed.  There I could admit that I truly wasn't happy and pinpointed why I wasn't happy, I needed a change.

My friend Aubrey Myer rode her bike down the Pacific Coast and crashed at my place for a few nights.  She told me about her adventures on her fishing boat job as a marine biologist and all that she had seen.  Then she mentioned how much they got paid and it got me thinking.  I could have an amazing adventure and on the top of that get paid?!  Yes, please.  I soon applied to the fishing boat job and I would have to get a hold of the company in January when they were back into the office, and I've been calling them every few months to check up on my application status.

My plans change drastically throughout the next few months but here is my draft for now.
Move out of my home by February(Check), store my stuff at a friends place (thanks Eileen! And if you can get pictures of all the people that end up sleeping in my bed that would be great.)(Check),  drive to Colorado to work at Copper Mountain with Brooke Etnyre (this is a wildcard plan confirmed just last week, thanks Brooke!!)(Interview Wednesday), and the rest is dependent on whether or not I am hired by the fishing boat job (hiring time is in March).  I have a few idea's but I'll keep those secret until later.  All of these plans are toward my true goal and that is to work in film.  I love film and I want to be involved in touching others through my acting, writing, or directing.  I want to make a difference in the world and I want to make film my medium in doing so.

AHH!!! So here we are, February 2nd 2014 and I leave in 4 hours to start my new adventure.  I just took a shower so I look forward to my anime hair in the morning.

I love you all and I wish you all the best.