Thursday, November 19, 2009

Picture's worth a thousand words

My buddy works for a big insurance company and was able to score company seats for the Wizards v Cavaliers, aka Lebron James and others. I can't begin to tell you how awesome the seats were.. I basically spent all game heckling the Cavs even though I like Lebron. How awesome were the seats? Well, these are all pics from where I was sitting.


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Because I fear the wrath of LJ

LJ, I love you, but I'm lazy and as you clearly pointed out, I'm a taker. But since I did agree to give back a little, here's the plug.

Note: This is a plug for a free poker training deal. If you are not a poker player, you can stop here since this will just bore you to tears. Hell, it's boring me and all I did was ctrl+c and ctrl+v from cmitch's blog. Thanks cmitch.

Here's the plug:

If you aren't signed up for free poker training, you are missing out. If we play at the same tables, please ignore this post.

Get Cardrunners/Stoxpoker for Free

I continue to receive CRs and Stoxpoker for free thanks to their truly free poker training program just for playing on FTP.

The link:

The details:
Earn 5.5k FTP points in a month and get 1 month of CRs free
Earn 3k FTP points in a month and get 1 month of StoxPoker free
No hit to rakeback
You keep your points
Pretty simple (I guess it is FTP paying ppl additional RB to play)
Go sign up

To follow up on Bayne's recent post about the FTC requiring "Thus, bloggers who make an endorsement must disclose the material connections they share with the seller of the product or service" I was not paid anything to make this post. I just can't imagine why people wouldn't sign up for it. If you hit the required number of points then you get free access to the training sites. If you fall under the required number of points then you can get discounted access (I think - may need to read the TFPT website info)


All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another.

~Anatole France

I'm born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. I moved to Richmond, VA when I was 18 to go to U of Richmond and after graduating, I stayed here for 11 years, working for a CPA firm for 8 years and then moving to a bank that is more known for its credit cards. During my 11 years here, I've met a lot of people and have become friends with a few of them. There were good times and tough times but through it all, one thing I had in common was the fact that I was always surrounded by good people. Despite the fact that I wanted to get out of Richmond (again, I grew up in Tokyo... nuff said), I was starting to get comfortable. It was an easy life. I had friends here. I have a good job in a great company.

And I'm gonna leave all of that behind.

About a month or so ago, I got a call from a recruiter. It was completely out of the blue and I have no idea how they got my number. Some job opportunity for a big insurance company. I wasn't looking but I never turn away job opportunities without at least entertaining the idea so I decided to string the recruiter along. It turns out it is for a director level position (it would be a 2 level promotion for me) in financial reporting... after the phone interview, I got the feeling that despite the fact that they really liked my experience, they were concerned about my lack of experience at the director level. Nonetheless, they invited me to Tampa, FL which is where their operations are located to interview me in person. Now I always said that if you get me an interview, I will get the job. Yeah, I know, I'm cocky. I'm also 100% in the interview to getting the offer ratio so it's not like I can't back it up. But this was a stretch. It would be a two level jump. They know that. I didn't even know if I still wanted the job... as in literally, I went to the interview unsure of what I would do even if I got the offer. Of course the money is better... but that's not what drives me and personally, I don't care about titles and such. I mean they're nice... but I have so much more in my life that I'm proud of that career/work is just a piece of who I am. At the end of the interview, I'm kinda worried that I may have actually nailed it... I mean the reason I was worried was that if I didn't get the job, it's a nonissue. I have nothing to worry about and I just keep going down the red carpet that my bank has laid out for me. But if I get the job, I have to make a decision.

Well, sure enough, by the following week, I get a verbal offer. I nailed it. What followed was probably the most stressful 2 days that I've had in a long time. As much as I act like nothing in the world scares me, I can only do that because I'm surrounded by my friends. It's easy to act tough when you know that you have friends that have your back. But this was a great opportunity... and a good chance for me to leave Richmond.

I talked to my boss about it the very next day. He then asked if I was comfortable talking to the CFO of our business segment so I said yes. So I talked to the CFO as well. This is where I'm convinced that I work for great people in a great company. They were very supportive... and appreciative of the fact that I was open with them about it. They essentially gave me advice on things to think about and they also mentioned that "as much as we would hate to lose you as an organization, opportunities like this don't come often, and we certainly cannot blame you for going after it." So, that weekend, I thought about all the pros and cons of staying vs leaving. Then, I realized that there were no cons for either one... I mean the cons were essentially missing out on the pros of each option. But there was nothing bad about it. So, I decided to take the job. My last day at my current company is next Friday. I'll be starting the new job in Tampa around mid December, after the blogger weekend.

Note: I will be unemployed during the blogger weekend so if you want to hook me up with drinks, I will graciously accept... I'm just sayin...

This decision, despite seemingly easy on paper, was not an easy decision for me. And the quote in the beginning was very fitting. There will be tons of things I will leave behind. As I started telling everyone at my current company, and they all started saying their goodbyes and giving me advice, etc, I realized that even these people that I work with or that I play basketball with will be missed. And these aren't even my friends! Of course, I'm sure I can find something similar down in Tampa. But, hence, the quote was so applicable. It's gonna be really hard to say goodbye to my friends. Of course, I can come visit or they can come visit but it will still be tough.

Having said all that, I would be lying if I said that I'm not excited. I am. Actually, I'm stoked. I'm definitely nervous and a little sad but I am mostly psyched for a new opportunity, new location, and a new life. I will enjoy the remaining time with old and new friends that I've made here in Richmond for in a month, I'll be starting all over again. But I am ready. And for that, I am psyched!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Dropping off the face of the earth

That's kinda how I feel... I've been so busy in both my work and personal life that I just haven't had the chance to update my blog. I don't even know if anyone still follows or checks but oh well... I do have a twitter account but I never really tweet... I guess I'm not much of a twitter guy.

So, what have I been up to? Well, a lot and nothing at the same time. Last time I posted, I believe I was just giving up on doing a triathlon because my buddy was in NY that same weekend. I was also in the midst of trying to bench 250lbs 3 times so that I could claim that I can bench 150% of my body weight. So, let's see... athletically, what have I accomplished? A big fat NOTHING.

I am still not benching 250lbs, I have given up on doing a triathlon this year (no more tris locally), and so I guess my focus is now on the half marathon that I'm doing in Vegas right before the blogger weekend. Taking people's advice, I actually started to incorporate running into my workouts. I ran 5 miles on Sat, did 10 miles on Sun, and did a 5.3 mile interval workout today. In between, I lift weights but one thing I noticed when I mapped out my workout plan was that I didn't have a single rest day. I mean there are days I don't run but then I'm lifting... and on days I don't lift, I'm running... and I'm thinking this is getting in the way of my 250lbs bench goal. Mondays are my chest days and there are times I'm freakin exhausted after the 1st set which is essentially a warm up set. When the 15th rep of 135lbs feels hard, I just know it's gonna be a shit workout. And I've had a few Mondays with worthless piece of shit workouts which really pisses me off.

I am gonna have to figure out a way to get the workouts in and yet come up with at least one day off...

So here in VA, we now have a republican governor... For those of you that don't know, and concludes that since VA is the south, we must always have a republican governor, you are incorrect. The past 8 years, we have had a democratic governor and personally, I'd like to think that this is a big eff you to Obama. I mean come on. Some people are starting to think that maybe the government taking over business to protect the idiots... errr, I'm sorry, the less fortunate or whatever you want to call them, may not be such a great idea. Ultimately, we, the consumers as a whole, will suffer... it's like when they say you're only as fast as the slowest guy in the group, it holds true the way Obama is trying to run things. Oh well, this post is not intended to be a political post and as a hard working, fairly decent income generating individual, these days, I just avoid the news because all it does is piss me off. I never thought I would repeat what I said during Bush years but here it comes... 3 more years. I can't wait.

Where was I going with this post? I'm really not sure. I just know that I haven't written anything on here for a while and I kinda miss it. This was a nice outlet but now, it isn't much of one for me right now. Maybe because I don't really need an outlet? Not sure.

On a completely different topic, I am still digging the "Surviving Disaster" show but tonight was the premier of "V" which as most of you (I assume my general readership is my age or above) know, was an old show... in Japan, they always had some american shows on TV including Family Ties, Knight Rider, the A-Team, etc... V was one of them and growing up, I remember being freakin hooked on that show (and I was in love with Faye Grant - I apparently liked blondes from when I was really young). Anyways, so I decided that since I was so into it, I'd watch the season premier... and I'm not gonna lie, I actually kinda dug it. It's now officially set up on my DVR to record weekly along with House and Criminal Minds.

I guess this is enough for now. If you are still reading, thanks. I'm hoping it won't be so long till I post next time but it is what it is. I hope you all had a great Halloween and if I don't post till later, Happy Thanksgiving.