I’m Re-Watching Stargate SG-1, Making Cheese Balls, and Getting Buff

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I said last time that I’d be blogging about what’s going on with me to try to get myself to write more. This week, my MBA program made me curious what it would take to make a profitable cheese ball catering business, I started re-watching Stargate SG-1, and I started exercising with resistance bands.

I Enjoy Making Cheese Balls For Some Reason

I’m in a marketing class in my MBA program. I’m not saying that I do want to start my own business someday, but I’m not saying I don’t. In theory, if an MBA program is going to prepare me for anything, I’d like to think it’s running my own business well. For class, I had to think about introducing new products in a global market. That was hard, so I starting thinking about launching a new product on a smaller scale, like selling homemade cheese balls outside my back door. I love making cheese balls for some reason, and I figure people might like cheese balls and not want to make them.

My cheese balls aren’t super gourmet or anything, but I like them. In my new theoretical cheese ball catering business, I make the cheese balls to order so I don’t waste inventory. In theory, I would just have to make one good cheese ball and take a good photo of it for marketing purposes. I probably wouldn’t need to make that much profit in the beginning, a buck or two here and there.

I eventually settled on a sandwich shop and two new sandwiches for my global marketing paper. Marketing class is hard, but if I ever want to sell a few cheese balls out of my apartment a few times a month, I now have the know-how. Thank you, grad school.

I might seriously consider trying to be more social. Maybe get an invite or two to some parties so I can show off my cheese ball skills. Well, future cheese ball skills. Let’s be honest, right now they’re kind of, um, okay. Maybe a few people would like them after I get a little better at making them. It’s probably more likely that I’ll just be that annoying guy who always brings a cheese ball to parties, though. That’s also fine with me.

Re-Watching Stargate SG-1

Oh, yeah. I forgot to mention that I’m on vacation from the day job this week. I’m just staying home, keeping things simple, browsing around on Hulu. Stargate SG-1 is streaming on there. I’ve been re-watching it for days.

I say re-watching, but what I really mean is watching for the first time, sort of. It’s kind of a long story. Way back in 2012 (I think), my boyfriend at the time decided that we should get this awesome DVD set of the entire Stargate SG-1 series. It was on Amazon. Here’s the boxed set that is currently sold on Amazon, and a newer version. I’m not sure which is the better deal, to be honest. You may just want to watch it on Hulu or something. Just so you know, I’m in the Amazon Associate Program and the below links are affiliate links. I may earn money from qualifying purchases.

Anyway, I’m not sure if one of these is the exact set or not, but I think it looks like it. Back in 2012 we watched the discs up to about halfway through the second season. The discs started skipping. We exchanged the product for a new one. The new discs also skipped on the second season. We gave up and got our money back. I still wonder what happens in the second half of the second season. I remember getting to the part with these cool gray alien dudes. It was super cool and I was super invested in it. It’s incredibly exciting to finally get to see what happens. I’m still re-watching the first season as a refresher, but it won’t be long until I get to where I was.

I’m Working On My Arms and Chest with Resistance Bands

This week isn’t about being completely lazy, though. I still have classes, have to walk the dog, and am going on a few bike rides. I’m also trying to work out at home more. I was waiting until my downtown gym opened back up, or my apartment place got finished with their remodel of the gym on the property. I don’t think either of those things are happening any time soon. I’ve taken matters into my own hands with my resistance bands I found in my closet.

Eric Shay Howard using resistance bands

I’m not 100% satisfied with my belly, but I’m much less pleased with my arms and chest. I don’t need my arms to be super huge or anything, but I figure I could at least fill them in a little. Maybe. I don’t really know because I don’t understand the gym. Coronavirus shut everything down a few months into my first real gym membership. I hadn’t developed a good routine or anything. My set of resistance bands I’m using now was purchased back when I started college and I don’t think they sell them anymore, but I’ve been thinking about upgrading to a more full set. I’m a member of the Amazon Associates Program. I may earn from qualifying purchases from the ad below.

I have no idea if just resistance bands alone will do much, but I suppose it’s a simple step in the right direction. Small steps. Do a few sets of 10 reps while re-watching Stargate SG-1.

So, that’s what’s been going on with me for a few days. I’m about to watch the Stargate Season 1 finale. Comment below and let me know how your last few days have been! You can follow me on Twitter or like my page on Facebook. You can also contact me using my Contact page.

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McDonalds and Taco Bell Still Don’t Let Cyclists Go Through the Drive-through During a Pandemic

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In an effort to blog a little more consistently, I’m going to blog about whatever is going on with me once a week, or every few days, or at least more than once a year. These blog posts won’t be the greatest literary pieces or anything, but they’ll be something to hopefully get me writing more again. I’m so busy with work and grad school that I’m afraid I won’t write if I don’t at least blog. I’m not sure what to call this, so it probably won’t have a series title, either. I hear that’s not good for SEO anyways. So this week, I couldn’t ride my bicycle through a drive-through during a pandemic, I found a lost uncle named Ralph, and thought I was in the middle of a national emergency outside of my apartment for about 10 minutes.

You Still Can’t Go Through A Drive-Through On A Bicycle During A Pandemic In A City

The first thing that comes to mind to talk about was the most recent thing that happened. I wanted to do some Uber Eats deliveries on my bicycle so that I could make some coffee money. It had been over a year since I’d delivered an order on my bicycle. I received an order for a Taco Bell delivery. Taco Bell has the lobby closed due to COVID19. That’s completely understandable. However, they still continue to have a policy that doesn’t allow cyclists to go through the drive-through. They weren’t prepared for the idea of a cyclist picking up an Uber Eats order, even though Louisville is the largest metropolitan area in the state of Kentucky.

These tweets represent my thoughts on the subject of drive-through windows and banning bicycles. The policy discriminates against people with disabilities, low-income households, and other communities that low-income disproportionately affects. Taco Bell is not the only fast food chain that does this; McDonalds and other fast food chains also have similar policies. It’s time to stop the madness and let people on bicycles pick up a drive-through order during a pandemic.

I Found A Long-Lost Uncle In A Painting At The Speed Art Museum

Okay, so I don’t really know if I’m related to him or not, but we have the same last name and we both have, well, a face.

Speed Art Museum September 2020

Meet Uncle Ralph of Wicklow, 1726-1786 ish (I think.) I forgot to write down who painted the portrait, which is super awful of me. (Update: actually the painting was painted by Pompeo Batoni.) Anyway, red is my favorite color, too. I will now refer to him as Uncle Ralph. If I ever get rich, I’ll commission someone to do a replica and hang it over the fireplace. I’d have also loved to get Uncle Ralph’s opinion on bicycles going through the drive-through during a pandemic.

An EMT stood outside my door and yelled “National Emergency”

That’s what I heard, “national emergency”. Or at least that’s what I thought I heard. After it was all said and done, I think what he might’ve said was “actual emergency”. These walls are pretty thin but I guess they are still walls. It was a light show for a while. I’m still really not even sure what happened. There was a guy with a stretcher outside my door, and there was a guy in a car on the other side of the street talking out of his car window. The EMT stood next to my door with the stretcher for about 10-15 minutes and then everyone left, without putting anyone on the stretcher.

And that was my week. How is your week going? Are you doing anything exciting? Did you by any chance try to go through a drive-through on a bicycle during a pandemic? Comment below and let me know what you’re up to. I’m stuck in my apartment all weekend working on a paper.

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Juggling A Full Time Job and Grad School

To be completely honest, I applied for grad school without really thinking about what my life would be like for the next 2 years if I kept my full-time job. I remember as an undergrad I had issues juggling campus life and work and finances. Fast forward to now: my graduate program is mostly online, and I work 40 hours a week at a law firm. It seems like it’s going to work out this time, but it’s still going to be rough.

My day is pretty busy.

  • Waking up sometime between 6:30am-7am to feed the dog and take a shower (if I didn’t take a shower before bed last night)
  • Biking to work at some point between 7:30am-8am
  • Working 8am-5pm
  • Biking home from the office and cooking dinner sometime between 5:30pm-6pm
  • Taking the dog out
  • Eating dinner at some point between 6pm-6:30pm
  • Spending 30 minutes doing whatever
  • Studying from 7pm-9pm
  • Doing any household work, laundry, dishes, dog walking, cleaning by 11am
  • Going to bed at 11pm and waking up at some point between 6:30am-7am

Doable? Yes. Awful? Well, not ideal. I still have my weekends free from the day job, but I also study and attend lectures and webinars, too.

The trick, I think, is going to be finding time to go out and do something a little fun and interesting so I don’t go completely crazy over the next two years.

No Time For A Second Part-Time Job Anymore

I usually try to do a part-time gig-economy type job on occasion to keep some extra money around. That hasn’t been super doable since classes started. To stay comfortable, I took out some student loans so that I don’t end up in a “situation”. I already borrowed a crap ton during my time as an undergrad, but I guess we have to do what we have to do these days. I probably won’t get a raise this year at work because of COVID19. No job is ever 100% guaranteed, either. If something happens and I lose my job, I’ll need to be able to continue with my classes and stay on track. Hopefully after I get my master’s degree it’ll put me on a better track to earn around $50,000 a year more easily. Stuff’s expensive and I’d like to be able to contribute to whatever my future boyfriend and I decide to do with our lives together, like buy a house. (By the way, in theory I’ll be 35 when I’m done with my masters, so the clock is ticking, guys. I won’t be waiting around forever.)

I’m Switching Back to Office 365 To Stay Organized

For the last few years, I’ve been meddling in Linux, Google Drive, and other tools. That trend is now over. I’ve completely switched back over to Microsoft Windows 10 and am back in Office 365 with Outlook and OneNote. I’m even writing this blog post in Microsoft Word, because I don’t trust that I’ll backup my blog posts via the WordPress backup options often enough. When did I write that blog post where I complained about how busy I’d be when I started grad school? No problem. Let me check my OneDrive real quick.

I’m way over-organizing my life with Excel spreadsheets and telling people to fuck right off if they can’t accommodate a 30-minute gap between my activities. I also reserve the right to stop mid-conversation and check my notes for anything and everything. Are you worried about what am I writing down while we’re talking? Well, don’t.

My BA is in English, but I’m Getting My Master of Business Administration

There is also the possibility of a hurdle that I’ll be facing constantly – the fact that my undergraduate degree is a liberal arts degree and my graduate degree will be in business. Math is also not exactly my strong suit. I can study it okay and do alright most of the time, but it’s not my forte at all. What if I just literally like, can’t, even?

I did some research and apparently a lot of people go into an MBA program after getting an English degree. But also, the graduation rate for most MBA programs I’ve looked into is about 20%. That’s awfully low and I wonder if there is a correlation? Well, of course there is a correlation because I just pointed it out. I suppose I wonder if there is causation. I’m not one to give up on stuff that I’m spending a lot of money on, but those numbers don’t exactly instill me with confidence. I confess, I didn’t really look into the graduation rate of other master’s degrees, except for MFA programs, which tend to vary widely from what I could find. (I mean when you accept 12 students a year [sometimes every 2 years], surely more than 2.5 of them graduate? I also wonder which half of the one MFA student got through the program and which half didn’t.)

So Why Am I Making It Harder on Myself?

Well, I really don’t know. To make more money, I guess. Or to at least help make myself more confident when I go to job interviews? I’d also like to open the door to a doctorate in something interesting in the future. Or maybe just to be able to say that I have a master’s degree.

More thoughts on stuff as they come.

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