I often hear folks talk about how Texas doesn’t really have seasons, and I guess I see their point, but there’s nothing like a nice long roadtrip through this great state during the springtime. On my trip from Dallas to Austin I saw all sorts of blue, red, and yellow wildflowers. Ahhh, I love this time of year, especially when you walk outside on a bright shiny day and the temperature is slightly warm but with an itty bitty chill in the wind, just enough to wake you up and appreciate life.
I wish I had both an MP3 plug-in in my car and navigation, but for now I use a cheap radio converter to listen to things off my phone, and use my phone for navigation, which really comes in handy.
When I drive all around DFW, I usually just listen to The TICKET, and I do the same here thanks to streaming radio on my phone.
The new company I work for is relatively small as it has roughly around 200 employees and annual revenue of about $40 million (with 52 straight quarters with a profit), but the CEO still found time to fly down from D.C. and be part of our orientation and take us out to a very fine dinner. We were told that we were the first to ever be hired by the company without an interview because we come that highly recommended. Gosh, I hope that’s true and they aren’t just desperate for chubby half-Asians.
At one point while speaking to us during orientation he was speaking about the future and goals he looked over at me, and said, “I see that look, you’re a doubter.” Thanks not exactly how I wanted to stand out on my first day on the new job.
It’s very interesting speaking to a CEO and executive VPs, especially in a small setting with very few people. I’ve learned they are all type-A personalities, full of energy, and love, love, love to talk and tell stories, to the point where it almost beats you down. Sometimes you start to think they are just scoreboarding you when they talk about vacations, trips, wine knowledge, and everything else you can think of.
One common theme in all of them, they are all divorced and are either on their second marriage or will soon be on their second marriage.
I’m not a social person at all. If there’s a party, I prefer to just chill in a corner and observe, and I never go to happy hour type events, but this week I’m forced to embrace change.
On Monday we had reservations at Perry’s at 6:00 PM. The first hour was spent in the bar, and since I’m not much for alcohol, I found their coke to be watered down. The next three hours was spent in a private dining room that might have out classed anything I had ever been in.
A reader recommended the pork chop, but it’s hard for me to turn down a steak, but after seeing the pork chop and how HUGE it was and the ribs that came with it, I had buyer’s remorse, even though I wasn’t buying.
During happy hour the CEO made eye-contact with me and then came over and said, “Ah, the one who still doubts.” I’m afraid I’m not going to live this one down, but he spent a good 25-minutes talking to me. I got to hear about his time at Harvard Business School and how he was in the same group as Tyra Banks. It turns out she was really more of distraction because of her entourage and security guard(s). From there, our conversation ranged everywhere from professional talk, to advice, to all sorts of personal and mundane stuff. He’s a friendly guy, but if this is what it takes to be a CEO, then it’s just not in my DNA.
The next day one of the executive VPs invited me and two others for dinner at her house. She was nice enough to cook dinner for all of us. I was told to be there at 6:00 PM sharp by my manager, who didn’t arrive until 6:30 PM. It was another long but eventful dinner engagement. After a tour of the house, we dined on appetizers, had some drinks (water for myself), and then of course, dinner. Dinner ended around 9:00 PM, and then she asked if we wanted to see her pictures of her trip to Africa. Someone said yes, my heart and body just ached for my hotel bed. The pics were put on a DVD and set to music and it lasted for 33 minutes. I know, I timed it. After the DVD, she brewed some decaf and gave us cookies and ice cream. Being that her house was about 18 miles from my hotel, I didn’t get in until late. I’ve never been so tired from eating and socializing. Right now, I just want to sit in my recliner and my dog on my lap, kids sleeping of course.
During dinner, she mentioned that she’s the only sibling left that is still healthy. One committed suicide, one died of AIDS, and another has some sort of brain condition that has left her to the point that she has lost a lot of her memory and has little muscle movement.
She did tell us that she once said in an interview that if they hired he, she would make them proud, but if they didn’t, she would make someone else proud. For some reason, that stuck with me.
One the way to her house, I passed a street called Convict Drive.
I walked out of the office on Tuesday only to see a truck park so poorly next to me I had to snap a picture before I tried to back out, which was a bit difficult. That’s what you see in the pic above, and yes, that’s my super fancy Altima. It’s a classic 2003 edition, and is paid in full. It’s hard to keep the UT girls off of me when drive through campus.
I keep getting asked to consider moving to Austin. I love this city, there’s just a cool vibe about it, but I don’t see myself living here.
I see a lot of joggers in Austin, and there are quite a few bike lanes. I think bike lanes are good and kinda necessary, but I can’t stand cyclists in DFW that hog the road and impede traffic. Personally, unless there are designated bike lanes, I think roads, especially busy ones with traffic lights, should only be reserved for motorized vehicles.
During one of the dinners, someone wondered why Waco is pronounced like “taco.” I never thought about it before, but I think he has a good point.
When I look at my hotel bathroom, I pray housekeeping didn’t clean the sink with the same utensil that was used on the toilet.