Monday, March 28, 2011

The Birds Are Dead

It’s been awhile and one of my regular readers (one of three) is getting restless.  My apologies to all of the rest of my readers for my lack of writing, but Dan can eat it…

I have been a bit busy, but not that busy recently.  First was a trip to Orlando, for no reason at all.  Well, for a reason, to meet one of the Three Cabelleros:

Dead Birds 03

Awesome.  We also walked about seventeen miles a day and rode a bunch of rides, did a bunch of sightseeing and ate a bunch of food.  It was just an awesome time.

I went to Disney World when I was in third grade.  I remember almost nothing from the trip.  One thing I do remember is I had an incredible time watching Michael Jackson in a 4D short film.  He basically teaches a crotchety old space beeword not to be such a beeword by dancing.  It was called Captain EO and was directed by Stephen Spielberg. 

When we went to Epcot Center, I was delighted to see that they brought it back.  It was at least 45 times more awesome the second time around, as it was just hilarious.  Just awesomely hilarious.  Thanks Epcot Center.

Dead Birds 04

It’s still very ugly though, that Epcot.  Yipes.

Another fun thing in Orlando?  Universal Islands of Adventure.  The place was jam packed with dorks, as that’s where the new and apparently dork riddled Harry Potter World resides.  Harry Potter World was just OK, but I’m not a huge fan of Harry Potter, so I didn’t want to stand in line for 45 minutes to get into a store that sold scarves from the movies.  Dorks.

The best part of Harry Potter World was a crazy ride that was kind of half movie, half roller coaster and half giant animatronic spiders spitting on you from three feet away.  Amanda was screaming her brains out.  She was genuinely scared and was actually, literally screaming out every few seconds.  Don’t believe me?  Here she is trying to to embarrass herself by covering her screams with her hand:

Dead Birds 05

Just fantastic.  I wanted to get that picture on a blanket, but I couldn’t shell out $99 bucks for a crappy blanket.  Maybe someday…

In other Ryan is busy news, I’ve been trying to get some more photography business drummed up, but it’s hit or miss.  I did have a few things this weekend though.

First, a wedding of some Seattle folks in Arecibo:

Dead Birds 01

And some third anniversary shots of a homosexual couple from Naples in Old San Juan:

Dead Birds 02

In house news, which is probably why you read this terrible web log, two of the three floors are rented.  Awesome.  The third floor houses two friends with jobs, so that should be some steady income.  The first floor has the previously mentioned single mom.  Hopefully she can come through with monthly money too.  The two rents combined cover the mortgage payment, plus the management fees, so once that second floor is filled, I will actually see a profit from the house.  Hooray.

Selling-wise, no real news.  One interested fellow wanted to offer $150k, but thought better of it when he found out that the heat is baseboard electric instead of steam.  This confused me greatly, as tenants pay for the electric bill, but the building owner pays for the oil that burns to create the steam.  Not to mention the water bill.   I don’t get it.

Now onto stereotyping Puerto Ricans!  Awesome! 

In my last post, I mentioned, and showed visual evidence of two infantile birds that lived, and screamed constantly, outside of our bedroom window.  They are no more. Here’s how they died, allegedly:

When we returned from Orlando after our seven days there, we opened our apartment door and were met with some water puddles by our giant living room windows.  Confused, we cleaned it up.  Not long thereafter, we learned that our building was, and still is, being power washed to prepare it for a new coat or two of paint.  The washers apparently sprayed the crap out of our not so well sealed windows and shot dirty water into our apartment.  Super.

We looked in the bedroom and it was a similar scene.  After cleaning up, I was curious to see what may have happened to the birds on the window sill.  I looked out and they were gone.  I was hopeful that in the time that we were gone, they had learned to fly and left the nest.

The next morning, and every subsequent morning since, we were awakened by a strange moaning bird.  Super loud and ultra depressed sounding.  That is what it sounds like, when pigeons cry.

We surmised that the baby birds had been moved by the workers and now their annoying and in need of therapy mom couldn’t find them. 

Later that day, we were on our way to the beach (which is right outside of our door, whabam) and turned a corner in the parking lot of the building.  Water was misting down from the washing going on above us, and we spotted something.  A dead baby pigeon.

The realization hit us both at likely the same instant.  These laborers had actually just sprayed the baby birds and they, not yet possessing the ability to fly, fell to their death.  Amanda hates birds.  A lot.  But even she wouldn’t throw one five stories to its death.  Incredible.

Puerto Ricans hate birds.  Or they are too lazy to take the time to move the flightless ones when cleaning a building.  Probably the second one.

In the next installment of Stereotyping Puerto Ricans, I will explore how Puerto Ricans are obscenely loud and discourteous.

That should get me a few more readers…

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Backing Out Isn’t Just For Leaving A Parking Space

I got an email from my property managers up in Rhode Island two days ago letting me know that the folks that wanted the second floor were supposed to sign a lease that day (a day after the first floor lady signed hers).  Instead of signing it, the folks instead said that they had found a different place to live.  Instead of living in that place, they offered me a deal.  They wanted exclusive rights to the driveway for parking, and the right to live in the second floor for a year, for $700 per month. 

That’s ridiculous.

They said that they found a place nearby for $725 per month, with ample parking and one more bedroom and were willing to take it.

I actually gave it some thought, instead of dismissing it outright immediately, and decided that I should have dismissed it immediately.  I offered $700 per month for rent with no parking exclusivity. 

They are going to live in that place nearby.


In check news, Traveler’s sent the check out to Richard Who Hands Me Money.  Hooray.  Richard Who Hands Me Money mailed out the check and I should get it soon.  Hooray again.

Now?  Some Puerto Rico fun. 

My wrist still hurts, so no scooting yet.  Because of this, I was forced to rent a car yesterday in order to start a good, old fashioned door to door job hunt.

I picked up the car early in the morning, went to a hotel to print out a bunch of resumes, grabbed my list of local golfing establishments and got to driving.  I first headed over to the Dorado Beach Resort & Club, a collection of 72 golf holes in Dorado.

I headed into the pro-shop and talked to the clerk there who let me know that I needed to go to the Human Resources office for any job inquiries.  The Human Resources office was a few minutes down the road, down a crappy dirt road and next to an active construction zone.

I got out of my awesome, periwinkle blue rolling embarrassment (Hyundai Brio) and tramped into an office.  I stood there for a few minutes with no one acknowledging that I existed and finally talked to someone.  They said that the golf HR office was in an apartment around the corner.  For real.

I walked around the grounds of this construction zone, found apartment number five half knocked on the door and cracked it open gingerly.  I walked in to an empty office.  Or apartment.  Or whatever.  I sat down in a chair in what might have been the living room and waited for fifteen minutes.  Nothing.  I heard some noises on the second floor of the apartment (in the bedrooms probably), but didn’t venture up there because there was a sign that said “Accounting” and pointed up the stairs.  I decided to head out to the next place, then come back to this office and hope that someone was actually employed on the first floor.

The second place that I went was the Dorado del Mar, and 18 hole course five minutes away from Dorado Beach.  I had already emailed this place, as they had a Golf Pro Assistant position posted online (thanks Paul).  I , of course, had heard nothing back from anyone there, but at least I had something to talk to someone about.

I talked to the woman in the pro-shop, who sent me upstairs to the administration office.  I talked to the woman in the administration office, who looked confused and sent me back to the pro-shop.  Obviously. 

When I was back in the pro-shop, the Golf Pro was actually in there, so I got to speak with him.  Of course, the Golf Pro Assistant job was filled, and had been for a month, and they weren’t hiring for other stuff, but the Pro told me that he’d send my resume and cover letter and info around to the other Pro’s he knows around the island.  I thanked him and headed out.

Back to the Dorado Beach Human Resources office.  Still empty.  I sat for another fifteen minutes without seeing anyone.


I gave up and started the trip to the next place.  On the way, I got a phone call from Amanda, so I picked her up and we both went looking for jobs together (she’s looking for one at a hotel or something like it).

We visited the following courses/hotels:

Here are the results of those visits:

  • “Go online and apply.”  That means, “go online and apply; you will never hear from us because we answer emails more slowly than your grandmother, who, if I’m not mistaken, is dead.”
  • Left my resume and applied
  • We weren’t even allowed into the resort.  It’s an $800 per night hotel.  See first bullet.
  • This place looked super dumpy, so I didn’t go in.

After that, we came home.  it took a very long time to go to these few places.  People here in Puerto Rico really couldn’t care about their jobs any less.  It’s maddening.

In better news, the Golf Pro at Dorado del Mar finally got back to me, after I sent him another email this morning, with a few email addresses for the Pros at El Conquistador (too far away for now), the Wyndham Rio Mar and the Trump International.  Hopefully those direct emails will lead to an email back.  I doubt it though.

In other Puerto Rico news, this is the fellow that lives in the building across the parking lots from our building:

Wrist 4


In even more Puerto Rico news, these little jerks wake us up every morning over and over screaming at their stupid bird-mom for food:

Wrist 9

Filthy baby pigeons.  They hatched a few weeks ago on the ledge outside of one of our bedrooms windows and have been getting progressively louder and more annoying every day.  And filthier.  I have no idea how long it takes for new pigeons to fly away, but I really hope, after two weeks of being awakened by screech-tweets, that it is two weeks and three hours.