What Made Me Smile This Week (July 22 – 28): I am baaaaack!!!!

What Made Me Smile This Week (July 22 – 28): I am baaaaack!!!!

Anyone who has ever taken any level of schooling seriously knows one thing: absences stink! Not only do you miss out on the lecture, you still have to do all of the makeup work. Unfortunately, when you’re an adult, there is no one to remind you of that, so you have to learn to kick your own butt sometimes. Well, on that note I hope that this post will be ending my month and a half long hiatus. I am on the fence about publishing my backlog. If you’re interested in reading it, please comment below. But there is something I need to tell you just to get the record straight. No, I wasn’t sick. No, I didn’t run out of things to smile about, and no, I’m not quitting blogging. It was just one of those things where I didn’t publish one week (although I had done the work), then I skipped the next week entirely, and before I knew it, an entire month and a half had gone by with zero blogging activity. Yuck! Complacency is a – cough, cough, cough – I won’t say it in case there are any minors reading this blog. 🙂 I knew I had to get back into it sometime, because I knew that the weeks I did it (and the weeks I was serious about it) made a difference compared to the weeks that I wasn’t. But I also knew that if I was going to do this properly, I had to pick a week that had something important going on. Well, this is it. I’m back in the game, with some (hopefully) interesting updates. Enjoy!

Monday, July 22, 2019

  • In an unexpected turn of events, one of my siblings came home for an evening. Dinner was unusually lively as a result (in a good way).
  • I finished “Seveneves” by Neal Stephenson today. If you like hard science fiction about surviving the end of the earth, this is your book. Few people can match Stephenson’s ability to write fiction that is both suspenseful and informative. Finishing it made me smile both because it is a long book, and because I could bask in time well spent reading it.

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

  • Movie night tonight (as usual). We saw “The Art of Self-Defense” this time. Understated gallows humor is the order of the day for this film. In retrospect, I don’t think I have ever watched a comedy that made me think this much. Laughter and philosophy?! Sign me up!

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

  • The VR headset at work has been on the fritz for a while now. My supervisor asked myself and another volunteer to spend the day trying to fix it. We didn’t get very far, but I definitely made a new friend that day. I hope we meet again sometime.
  • I convinced one of my family members to start using the matrix protocol in place of SMS today. I believe the experience on matrix is far superior to any commercially available texting solution right now. I hope to enumerate some of these reasons in an unrelated blog post fairly soon, but suffice it to say I was overjoyed when they agreed to try it. By the way, in case anyone reading this is interested, you can sign up for an account via Riot.im.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

  • I was alone today, holding down the house and keeping the dog company. It was uncharacteristically quiet even by my usual standards. The quiet was kind of rejuvenating though.
  • I finally got off my rear and did some of the laundry. I’m always happy when I can cajole myself into being productive, so of course it made me smile.

Friday, July 26, 2019

  • Today could not have been more different than yesterday. I was off traveling again, and despite the length of the trip I was overjoyed to be out and about once more. It turns out that LACMA Museum has a jazz concert series on Friday evenings, running until the end of August. Though I wasn’t able to stay for the entire concert, it was still the kind of evening that I live for. The air was balmy, I discovered a new stretch of museums to explore along Wilshire Boulevard, and I saw tons of new interesting cityscape.
  • Though I got only that night, I was overjoyed that I was able to find a decent route home.

Saturday, July 27, 2019

  • I am partially embarrassed to admit that I slept in today, but believe me, I needed it. I know I’m cheating, but I’m still smiling over the events of last night.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

  • For the first time in a long time, I got to bed on time tonight and didn’t stay up late. Sleeping without feeling guilty over wasted time on my devices was an absolute dream come true.

What Made Me Smile This Week (June 3 – 9): New Beginnings and Bittersweet Endings

Sometimes, fate has a strange symmetry to it. Who would have guessed that I would be celebrating a birthday and funeral in the same week? It’s at times like these that I start taking stock of my life and wondering both where it will go and what I have accomplished so far. I haven’t done terribly for myself – I’ve stayed out of any sort of trouble whatsoever, and I have accomplished some very major educational goals which most people never have the opportunity to achieve. On the other hand, weeks like this inevitably make me wonder if I could or should do more with myself. I talked about the strangeness of time perception in my very first blog post, and I think the point bears repeating here: time can seem infinitely long or infinitesimally short depending on your perspective any given moment. Very few things can accentuate those feelings like celebrations of life were remembrances of death. This is a week that I will be pondering for many years if I manage to remember it at all. One thing that I will note is that even in the moments where you remember death, you can find happiness in the fact that a life you are celebrating may have been well lived. I think that is certainly the case here.

Monday, June 3, 2019

  • Last Sunday, I decided to go down to our local $.99 store and get a cheap set of silverware for use at work. I am sick and tired of running out of disposable utensils when I need them most during lunch. I am happy to report that my planning is actually working beautifully so far. Seeing plans like this come together makes me smile.
  • It’s not quite time yet, but I am already getting birthday wishes from people in other time zones for whom it is already June 4. It’s awesome to see how many people remembered, even now.

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

  • In case you have been reading this and wondering when my birthday is, it’s today! That alone is reason enough to smile. Call me narcissistic, but I like the idea of having one day out of the year that is all about you.
  • Whoo-boy, I had quite a lot to eat today! My supervisor got me lunch from In & Out Burger, one of my other coworkers scraped together a candy jar just for me, and my family took me out to dinner when I got home.
  • The steak at Ruth’s Chris steakhouse is probably the best you will ever find in California. I am still coming down from the ecstasy inspired by their culinary feats.
  • Last but not least, I heard from both of my siblings today. Learning what they are up to caps my day off perfectly.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

  • I was exceptionally busy at work today. Maybe the world will eventually grind me down, but for now I am once again happy to be useful

Thursday, June 6, 2019

  • I dug into a box of gourmet chocolate today called Sees Candies. I don’t get these very often, because they are extraordinarily expensive but in light of my recent birthday I get to enjoy a confectionary treat about once a year. Pure awesomeness!

Friday, June 7, 2019

  • We saw an amazing sci-fi movie the and Netflix tonight. It was called “I Am Mother”. Thrillers about philosophy won’t be to everyone’s taste, but it is probably one of the better movies I have seen in the last six months. That’s quite a statement considering that I’ve actually started keeping track of a few of them. I haven’t had to think so hard about a film since I watched “Ex Machina”. If you like films that make you think, this one definitely fits the bill.

Saturday, June 8, 2019

  • Myself and a friend (henceforth known as MDJ) went down to Union station today to experience the second annual Los Angeles Festival of donuts at union station. It was wonderful catching up again and made me smile to be out in a beautiful day. These are the kind of days that I live for.

Sunday, June 9, 2019

  • Today will go down in history as bitter sweet. I have the honor of being able to attend a public funeral service for my high school band director. He commanded respect and demanded excellence, and the bands under his tutelage reflected that perfectly. The world will greatly miss him, and so will I. But as sad as it was to reflect on his passing, it was amazing to be part of the group of people that gathered to look back on his life’s legacy.
  • On a more personal note, coming together with so many high school alumni meant that I saw several faces that I haven’t seen in years. Meeting up with them again was pretty wonderful.

What Made Me Smile This Week (May 27 – June 2): Clouds and Silver Linings

Ever since I have started this project, I have been worried about one thing: what will happen to it if I can’t find something to smile about for some days of the week? I almost found out this week – but lo and behold, I made the important discovery that there is something to smile about even on extraordinarily stressful days, even if that something is only that the day is over and I’m still alive. The stressors are talking about below are kind of unique to my situation, but I believe the broader lesson is applicable here: there is always a bright side to look at. I don’t know how successful I was this week, but you can judge for yourself below.

Monday, May 27, 2019

  • Today is Memorial Day in the US, so of course a made the best possible use of my holiday time and slept in. I always have mixed feelings about this after the fact, but at the time I was sleeping in, I did enjoy the rest.
  • After a hair-raising couple of days in which I couldn’t log into my new student account for my Masters degree, I discovered that the deactivation was temporary while they cleared my paperwork. I smiled when I found that out, but it was relief more than anything else.

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

  • There was no movie night tonight, but Netflix proved to have some promising new material. “Queen of the South” has new episodes on. A Thriller about drugs and politics in the Mexican cartels, what’s not to like? Just be aware that you will need to read a lot of subtitles if you don’t speak Spanish.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

  • I was on my own for dinner tonight. Normally the frozen meals I have in these circumstances are not very memorable, but tonight was a major exception! Trader Joe’s Stout pie was absolutely wonderful, giving me a smile that I totally wasn’t expecting.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

  • Some days you just have to be glad when an ordeal is over. I was on the phone most of the day trying to figure out why I haven’t been approved for an appointment at a clinic to get a fitting for a new wheelchair. At least I was able to crown the day by getting an appointment with my doctor to get some of the necessary paperwork redone. At least something useful came out of it. I guess I can smile about that.

Friday, May 31, 2019

  • I must have really needed the rest from yesterday, because I slept in again. I am happy there were no phone calls today.

Saturday, June 1, 2019

  • It has finally sank in that my time in academia is not quite over yet. Normally, I would consider the stuff that I did today pretty boring. But I noticed something. Ever since the acceptance letter came in, I have been feeling steadily more optimistic about my career prospects than I have in several months. Skimming over possible class subjects and researching various career paths was actually making me smile.

Sunday, June 2, 2019

  • Today was a big day in a quiet sort of way. Yes! I finally stopped waffling and signed up for my classes. I didn’t have to wait-list anything either, which is making me smile beyond words. It’s nice to know that after having such a stressful week, something is actually going well.
  • This is a side point, but something that made me smile about process of signing up for classes was how comparatively streamlined it was against any previous experience I have ever had. Cal State Long Beach knows how to make a good first impression with choosing your classes. Their course planner is by far the best I have ever seen. Figuring out which classes are necessary to graduate is not always an easy task, so I can appreciate the technical challenge that went into creating a system that makes it so painless. Way to go Long Beach!

What Made Me Smile This Week (May 20 – 26): As Life’s Wheels Turn

This week may turn out to be life changing! I’ll save you the suspense just skip to tuesday!

Monday, May 20, 2019

  • I spent most of today genuinely believing I had lost my house keys, so was a relief that I finally found them later today. It caused me a great deal of consternation earlier, but I can allow myself a smile of relief now.
  • More VR Work! Woohoo!

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

  • Movie day! We saw “Longshot” this time around. The plot was pretty standard Rom-Com fare, but Seth Rogan’s bathroom humor was priceless. I was too busy laughing to smile.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

  • I set out a list of things for myself to do after I got home from work today, and I finished almost everything! Productivity Rules! No seriously, I hate chores, but if there is one thing I wish could explain to my younger self, it would be that you get a true sense of fulfillment in sticking to things you set out to do! This is a small victory of course, but one well worth smiling over!
  • One of those minor victories was to get myself back onto the treadmill today! I’ll remember to smile when I wake up from the fatigue induced coma…blugh!

Thursday, May 23, 2019

  • STOP THE PRESSES! I was notified today that I have been accepted into the Cal State Long Beach Masters of Public administration program!!! Smiling doesn’t begin to describe my excitement. My heart skipped a couple of beats when I found out. A new Epoch begins!
  • Mom took me out to dinner to celebrate! The Pizza was amazing.

Friday, May 24, 2019

Saturday, May 25, 2019

  • Despite some freak rain showers today, I timed my sojourns outside perfectly, and managed to stay absolutely dry! I got all the benefits of listening to the rain with none of the drawbacks. Pure smiling bliss…
  • I got a chance to talk to one of my coworkers on Discord tonight. I haven’t seen him in a while, so it was good to hear he was doing well.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

  • In a rare twist, we saw a documentary tonight on Netflix. “The Contestant who Knew Too Much” is a fascinating story of a math wizard who managed to turn “The Price is Right” from a gambling show into a high stakes game of skill. The smile worthy thing in this documentary was his complete humility. What an awesome dude!

What Made Me Smile This Week (May 13 – 19): “Welcome to the Grid, Program”

Here it is! The busy week that has gotten my scheduling into a Gordian knot! I enjoy busy weeks when they happen, but to have two in a row is extraordinarily uncommon for me. That is to say, I’m not used to it. Normally, I have weeks of extreme con followed by short punctuated bursts of frantic activity. So far, I have had two busy weeks in a row, and as of this Monday, I am shaping up to have a third! How is that for a winning streak?!

Monday, May 13, 2019

  • I sadly had to say goodbye to my siblings today almost immediately after the heady festivities of Mother’s Day. At least we all had breakfast together one last time. It was the old standard, our local Good Stuff restaurant, which has cemented itself as a staple of casual beach dining. I smiled over that meal like it was Mother’s Day all over again.
  • Fortuitously, I was also given the day off of work today. I took the opportunity to do one of my favorite things in the whole world: visit Los Angeles, the one true mega-metropolis in all of Southern California. I went hoping to acquire another internship. Unfortunately, this didn’t pan out, but at least the city worked its magic on me and made me smile once again just for being there. I love downtown Los Angeles!
  • In order to make my commute home easier, I decided to take the slightly longer route from Pershing Square to the 7th St., Metro Center stop. This meant that I had an excuse to ride the red line, one of my favorite train lines in the entire county. There isn’t much to see on the red line, as it is a subway. No, I love the red line because it cuts straight through the city’s heart, which is arguably where you will find some of the most vibrant activity in the entire area. I always love an excuse to take the train, because it is by far the most hasslefree way for me to travel. I don’t need securements, I don’t need assistance boarding, and it’s not subject to any of the usual traffic which plagues Los Angeles’s congested city streets. In short, I ride that subway every chance I get, and it makes me smile every single time. Today was no exception.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

  • Remember how I mentioned this was a busy week? Today is the main reason why. My work is offering a VR program for bedbound hospice patients. The idea is that if they can no longer experience the world, a sliver of the world will be brought to them in the form of an Oculus Rift VR headset. VR (short for virtual reality) is the idea of experiencing a computer program in three-dimensional space. That’s a very complicated way of saying that you put on a set of goggles and you can experience a virtual world as if you were actually there. This has been a concept since the 1970s, but the technology behind computer-generated imagery has only recently gotten good enough to make this experience available to the general public. My work in particular has a fascinating program, but many bugs still need to be worked out of rapidly deploying it to patients. I am one of the more tech savvy people currently available in the office, and so it has fallen to me to help my coworkers evaluate which programs would be most useful for hospice patients. In practice, this means spending a lot of time immersed in virtual reality. It has been an absolute blast! I smiled that day on several occasions of course, but I think a better way to describe it would be that I was completely in awe of what modern technology can do. If you haven’t gotten time on a true Oculus Rift headset, I highly recommend you do so. Virtual reality is an entirely different experience than sitting in front of a computer screen.
  • In all that excitement, I almost forgot it was movie night again! The movie on tap for tonight was “Poms“, a heartwarming drama about a woman at a retirement community determined to start her own cheerleading team. As far as I know, the story was fictitious, but the film did a competent job of seeming like a story that could very easily have been true. The inner lives of the characters were masterfully portrayed.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

  • More VR, more smiles today.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

  • I have had Isaac Asimov’s “Nightfall” on my Kindle for quite some time now. Today, I finally got around to reading some of it. I have not finished it of course, I have a voracious appetite for science fiction and a good book in front of me. Nothing will slow me down for very long, nor prevent me from smiling about it. Be warned, the link I posted contains spoilers, which I have not yet read.

Friday, May 17, 2019

  • I have been shamefully addicted to yet another open source computer game. This one is called Mine Test, and if you are familiar with the much more famous Mine Craft, you will have no difficulty playing this one. I don’t know what it is about gameplay without objectives, but an infinite sandboxing game in which you can do pretty much anything you darn well please sparks the inner kid in me.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

  • We watched a documentary about the current world record holder for the longest skydive ever, called “14 Minutes from Earth“. Watching some of their preparations for the dive was nerve-racking, that the documentary was fascinating. If you enjoy unobstructed views of the earth from the upper atmosphere, this documentary is well worth a watch. As for me, seeing the greatest minds humanity has to offer solving a science experiment of epic proportions made me smile that night.

Sunday, May 19, 2019

  • Another Netflix movie tonight! This one is called “Killer Cove“. The plot looked like it was going to be obvious, but I have to give the movie makers credit – looks can be deceiving. They kept me guessing until the very end, which is exactly how I like it!

What Made Me Smile This Week (May 6 – 12): Double Mother’s Day Surprise

I’ve noticed a pattern in life recently where I will have several weeks in which nothing is happening in a week or two where everything happens all at once. This is definitely a week to remember. I’m sorry this episode is almost a full week late by now, but in my defense these last two weeks have been some of the busiest I have had since last summer. I promise it was worth the wait though.

Monday, May 6, 2019

  • Interacting with other people’s pets can be a mixed bag in terms of how they react to you when you have an obvious physical disability. Fortunately, the dog I ran into on the way to work today had no reservations about me whatsoever. His sunny disposition was a wonderful start to my day.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

  • I had lunch with a good friend from school today. Normally our talk turns to politics, and though we disagree on many areas, he never fails to provide an interesting perspective.
  • The Korean chicken we had for lunch was very good, although I strongly suspect it was Americanized, because it tasted like normal chicken to me.
  • Another movie night tonight. We saw “The Intruder” this time around. The pacing of the film was a bit slow at first, although I think a strong case could be made for why the slow parts of the movie actually built up tension. In all though, the movie was satisfying enough to elicit a smile from me (along with several goosebumps).

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

  • My supervisor had time to have lunch with me today. Over the course of our conversation, it became clear that I know absolutely nothing about 80s culture. I was subsequently tasked with going home and watching “The Breakfast Club” sometime after work. I haven’t done it yet, but it is on the list of things to see. I don’t know when or how I will do it, as it’s not available on Netflix streaming. But the conversation made me smile.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

  • Mom and I saw “Bless This Mess” today. It’s a promising show whose pilot made me smile, but overall I will have to put it in the “wait and see” category.

Friday, May 10, 2019

  • Today was another quiet day. We all need those sometimes. This one made me smile.

Saturday, May 11, 2019

  • This Saturday could not have been more of a contrast from the day before. AC and I went down to West Hollywood to see the sights. I had never been there before today. Traveling always makes me smile, but West Hollywood managed to make me smile above and beyond my normal levels.
  • It turns out West Hollywood also has an amazing public library. I spent a solid 30 minutes admiring the view from their main window. There is something absolutely breathtaking about cities that have trouble explaining in words. The view from that library window encapsulates everything beautiful about them to me. Smiling doesn’t even come close to describing how I was feeling.
  • I had falafel for the first time ever today. It’s definitely a keeper in terms of things that I would try again.
  • In yet another first today, I had a coffee flavored milkshake. Don’t give me that look! It was amazing.
  • Hanging out with AC again made me smile.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

  • It was Mother’s Day today, and that means plenty of appreciation for mom. Mom wasn’t the only one who got a surprise though. Both of my siblings decided to come to town in a surprise visit! Once again, happiness doesn’t begin to describe how I felt about this. I haven’t seen either of them since Christmas and it was great to catch up again, even if it was only for two days.
  • My elder sibling took us out to dinner. I ordered seasoned chicken of some sort. The sauce was so good that I wasn’t even the last one done with my meal, which is a very rare occurrence.
  • Having a nuclear physicist and an electrical engineer in the same family can lead to some very interesting discussions about the future of humanity. Our after dinner conversation was one that I hope to remember forever. This is what life is about, fun, food and family. What an awesome way to close the week. Smiling can’t even begin to describe all of this.

What Made Me Smile This Week (April 29 – May 5): Fun, Friends, and Christmas Come Early

There is always a certain indescribable thrill about getting new packages in the mail. Keeping that in mind, you will understand why I was utterly jubilant this week when I (sort of) received two in the mail. Lucky me! More importantly, I got to meet up with an old friend this week. An afternoon together couldn’t catch me up on 10 years worth of stories, but I sure tried!

Monday, April 29, 2019

  • My new phone came today! I am one seriously happy camper right now, so my facial expression should be obvious. I can actually reasonably run Google maps and my public transit app again without worrying about my phone crashing. I think I’m going to celebrate by going out traveling very soon. I’ve read about some issues with the model they provided me, but trust me it’s a huge step up.
  • I found a potential new job opportunity. Fingers crossed. It came as I was feeling a sense of “carpe diem”. If it pays off I will be through the roof excited, but for now I can satisfy myself knowing that I have the guts to look and find something.
  • I finally finished the last of a humongous load of laundry! My cerebral palsy makes a victory dance rather difficult, so I’m going to have to settle for a victory war whoop instead. Now that it’s finally done, I can smile without any reservations

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

  • Boy! First a new phone, and now a new book! I get to be excited for two days in a row because Shane Burcaw finally released his latest autobiography! Of course, I pre-ordered mine weeks ago, so I have the added bonus of waking up to something new in my inbox, first thing in the morning. Shane, if you ever read this, I think you’re an awesome writer. I’d love to meet you someday if I ever end up in Minnesota, or you in California. That would probably make me smile for the rest of the year!
  • Two of my coworkers gave me lunch today! Work may not always be eventful, but the people are always awesome!

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

  • I was on my own for dinner tonight. The evening was quiet, and I found tinfoil wrapped extra cookies in the refrigerator. I had to finish them off of course, as they would have gone bad otherwise… What? Don’t look at me like that! I was doing my duty finishing leftovers doggone it! Never mind that these ones made me smile.

Thursday, May 2, 2019

  • I finished the job application from Monday. Fingers crossed and a nervous smile. Wish me luck folks!

Friday, May 3, 2019

  • I finished the majority of “Strangers Assume My Girlfriend Is My Nurse” today. Aaah Shane, your ability to make me laugh is unparalleled. Fantastic work sir!
  • We saw “Their Finest” tonight. It is a very well constructed period piece centered around a lone female propagandist in the British Ministry of Information during World War II. It is simultaneously tragic and heartwarming (though not a true story as far as I am aware). Sometimes even sadness can make you smile.

Saturday, May 4, 2019

  • Today was a very special day. I should explain that I had physical therapy 10 years ago. I’ve had physical therapy throughout most of my childhood, but when I turned 18 I was approved for physical therapy sessions at my local hospital due to some preoperative (and later postoperative) complications. One of my two primary therapists still works in the unit that I went to. Mom and I decided to pay her a visit today. The number of stories you can accumulate over a decade is absolutely mind blowing, and I couldn’t wait to share every single one of them. I didn’t quite get through everything that happened to me since then, but it was wonderful reconnecting with someone who played such a pivotal role in my teenage years. My smile lasted all day for this one.

Sunday, May 5, 2019

  • I had a lot of administrative work to do today, but one thing that was definitely worth a smile was the time that I found to tinker with my Kindle. It has been so long since I have probed the internals of it that I forgot how everything worked. I rooted it years ago, but I haven’t really done much else with it besides read books. Hopefully my latest trick will be worth an Instagram photograph. It should be up within a couple of days, and it definitely made me smile.

What Made Me Smile This Week (April 22 – 28): The Second Home Homecoming

So, I’ve been doing weekly smiles for a while now. Overall, I am fairly happy with the result. I came to this project with two goals in mind: first, I wanted to practice learning to be happy. Second, I wanted to establish a writing habit. The first goal has shown me something. I don’t have to be doing something crazy all the time to smile. Sometimes you learn to be happy about the simple things, and that is what will sustain you throughout day-to-day living. That said, adventuring is always fun (for me). Most of this week was quiet, but Wednesday was a huge exception on multiple counts. You know the drill. Read on my friends!

Monday, April 22, 2019

  • Remember how I said dinner was mostly good on Easter? Well, I added that qualifier because we all got food poisoning about 40 minutes later. Anyway, the smile in all of this is that it could have been much, much worse. I was over it in less than 24 hours, which as sicknesses go is quite minor. My stomach was unstable today, but it didn’t get any worse. In retrospect, there is a bit of a comical lesson to be learned here: a nice ambience does not necessarily equal a clean kitchen. Maybe I just have a twisted sense of humor, but I find it deeply ironic that food poisoning could strike in such an upscale restaurant.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

  • I have the unexpected pleasure of running into an old friend and fellow ham radio hobbyist on my way to work today. We didn’t have much time to swap more than a casual hello, but I smiled because I love these moments in life. To my friend: I don’t want Dox you by mentioning your name, but if you are reading this, it was really nice running into you sir.
  • Ever since my desk partner left (see last week’s post about the volunteer luncheon), the reception desk I work at has been fairly quiet. I would often go to lunch with this coworker in my building’s cafeteria. But as I was preparing to sit alone today during lunch, a group of my fellow coworkers invited me to join them. That made me smile.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

  • Today was hugely exciting! I returned to my alma mater (Loyola Marymount University) to attend a talk on human rights in North Korea. Not only was the lecture fascinating, I also got a chance to catch up with one of my former professors, ever so briefly. I genuinely miss being at my university, and there are more things that make me smile there than I can possibly count.
  • Getting home from said extracurricular activity turned out to be a comedy of errors. First off, I made the decision to have dinner on campus. This wouldn’t have been a problem except that I stayed slightly after sunset. After dinner, I discovered that the plastic sheath holding my bus pass to a lanyard that I wear around my neck had ripped, meaning that I spent the next half hour frantically searching for my all-important transit pass. Fortunately, it turned out to have simply fallen into a crevice in my chair. To make matters worse, the motor attached to my wheelchair died. As if that wasn’t bad enough, my cell phone also chose that moment to die (permanently). I made it home at 9:45 PM. I was exhausted, but I spared myself the smile because at least I made it home in one piece. And boy was it one heck of a story.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

  • After such an exhausting Wednesday, it was nice having a quiet day. This alone is worthy of a smile
  • Upon hearing about my broken lanyard, one of my coworkers found a couple of replacement sheaths I can use for my bus pass. It sounds like a small thing, but receiving that tiny piece of plastic made my day.
  • A customer thanked me for personally escorting them to the right office and complemented my awesome customer service skills. I love being useful!
  • I called my phone service provider today and discovered that they were willing to ship me a new phone for only the cost of shipping. Having helpful customer service is a very refreshing change that deserves a smile.

Friday, April 26, 2019

  • We saw “A Private War” today. The subject matter of the film was quite serious, but the quiet heroism of a real-life journalist placing her life on the line made me smile.
  • A funny YouTube commercial about Capterra made me laugh out loud today

Saturday, April 27, 2019

  • We saw an episode from the sequel series to “Planet Earth” last night, called “Our Planet ”. Unsurprisingly for a Planet Earth series, the cinematography was utterly spectacular. Okay, this wasn’t a smile, it was a gasp.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

  • I finally got off my a rear long enough to put away laundry (or at least some of it). Having some of that done makes me smile.

What Made Me Smile This Week (April 15 – 22): Easter Is Upon Us!

This is probably one of the lowest key holiday weeks that I have ever had. I suppose it’s a little bit easier to smile when there’s no real planning to be done., Did I forget to mention which holiday? Happy belated Easter!

Monday, April 15, 2019

  • I played a game of 0AD today, I survived for a whole 40 minutes against the AI on medium difficulty. I’m so excited! That has never happened before. If you want to try your own luck against the AI, the game is free to download. Be warned though, it’s addictive!
  • I was given the day off of work today, so I could take life easy again for a while. That always makes me smile.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

  • Construction is complete at work today! I am happy for reasons I can’t begin to explain. Suffice it to say that one of the improvements was an ADA ramp just outside of where I work.
  • We stayed home and watched “Split” for movie Tuesday. The acting was insanely good. Who knew goosebumps can make you smile!

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

  • I am so totally the boss of time management now! I woke up for work an hour later than usual, but still managed to be early. Other than a bit of a rush job on my shaving, things didn’t turn out that badly either.

Thursday, April 18, 2019

  • I saw the season finale of “Speechless” today. I hope they come out with another season, but if not, they are at a good place to end the show. If this is indeed the end, then it’s been a fun run guys. You’ve made me smile more times than I can count. Thanks a million.
  • I finally beat that pesky AI today. Well, for the most part. I haven’t technically ended the game, but 80% of his structures are destroyed. It’s nice to win for once.

Friday, April 19, 2019

  • We saw “No Men Beyond This Point” this evening. No one is spared in this mockumentary lampooning both sides of the gender war. It definitely made me smile, even as I squirmed.

Saturday, April 20, 2019

  • I started a fairly large writing project for my blog today. I’m not going to reveal too much yet, but I’m enjoying how it’s turning out. It’s definitely making me smile to kick things up to the next level.
  • I got to bed early tonight for the first time in a gazillion years! Getting enough sleep to have pep and vinegar for the next day makes me smile!

Sunday, April 22, 2019

  • It has been spotty over the last week, but our Internet signal is back! I can smile either way though, because having a bit of the digital detox has been cleansing for my soul.
  • Easter today! In what has to be a first for my family, the usual parties did not do home cooking. Instead, we went out. The ambiance was lovely, the food was (mostly) lovely, and the wait staff were excellent.
  • Speaking of the waiters, we briefly got into a conversation with one of them about dogs. It turns out that he owns two Siberian Huskies. Seeing a picture of his youngest puppy brought an extra large smile to my face. We also have a Siberian Husky, so I could definitely relate to the boundless energy his puppy had.

The Plague Strikes

All calamities of strike at once it seems. Sadly I was hit with two problems this week. First, I got a minor cold from work, and then my Internet went out when I was going to upload this week’s episode. Unfortunately the cold has two implications for my blog. First, I wasn’t doing much this week so there isn’t much to write about. Second, nasal congestion plays havoc with computerized speech dictation, so my notes this week are pretty basic. I’m sorry for the delay. On the bright side, seven days end to end is probably the fastest time I have ever recovered from a cold.

Monday, April 8, 2019

  • I watched the Blender Foundation’s latest video today. It made me smile. The Blender people do amazing work, I highly recommend checking them out.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

  • The wind was fierce tonight. It rattled my windows, but I smiled because I didn’t go out in it at all today.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

  • I have been fighting a cold since Monday, and as of today, I can swallow again without hating existence. I still have some Sinus issues, but sleeping for almost 48 hours straight has dramatically improved things. Smile! Normally this process takes a month.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

  • I ate normally today (ie standard diet and portion sizes) for the first time this week. It is nice to have normal food again!

Friday April 12, 2019

  • I felt well enough to approach the rest of the family without fear of starting an epidemic today, so we watched the film “Vice“. I’m not gonna lie, parts of it infuriated me, but it was executed with a gallows humor that belied the gravity of the subject matter, which weirdly made me laugh

Saturday, April 13, 2019

  • I was invited to a volunteer luncheon today for work. I got a chance to say goodbye to one of the volunteers who I won’t be seeing again for quite some time. Lengthy goodbyes are always difficult for me but we’re pretty sure will be able to see each other again sometime, so fortunately it’s not permanent. I am glad I got a chance to give a proper goodbye though.

Sunday, April 14, 2019

  • Mark this! I’m sufficiently recovered as of today to get up at normal time! Recovery continues, along with the smiles!