Monday, September 30, 2013


So as some may know I now have an apartment in New York, or rather Queens.

The funny thing is that everybody up here has had the same reaction of surprise when I tell them I found a place. It's always a variation of "you ALREADY found a place?!"

Apparently in this city it takes forever to find a place to live. A fact to which I can attest. It seems like just about every time I found a place I liked it was taken before I could even finish hitting send on the email inquiry. Then the ones that were available were either a bit more than I cared to spend on a place or the size of port-a-potty.

Even better is the fact that I was able to find it without having to pay a fee. That's right ladies & gentlemen, up here the person who rents the apartment usually winds up paying the broker/realtor anywhere from 10%-15% of the full year's rent. Some brokers are willing to just charge you one month's rent, but of course that's in addition to the first, last & security deposit.

However, true to my never ending quest to get the most for less I would dedicate at least an hour each night looking for apartments listed as "no fee." To which I found a link to a company that owns several buildings throughout Queens & Brooklyn.

Best of all?

All they asked for was 1st month and security deposit. Done deal.

So now I start the next journey in my NYC adventure. With a little help from my friends, and IKEA, I know I'm gonna have a great place in no time.

Sunday, September 22, 2013


So it's officially been a week since I started my new life on the northern east coast and gotta say things are definitely looking positive.

Not only have I been walking to work each day (about 15 minutes each way), but I've started working out again. Luckily the building I'm currently living in has a gym. On the smaller side of my usual LA Fitness, but it's got free weights and a few machines, all I need to try & shed the pounds that my extensive walking might not eliminate.

Work is going well so far true. Granted, it's only been 5 days and if things go horribly wrong in that time, well you should probably fear for the rest! With that said, my accounts are doing some interesting executions throughout the year which will certainly continue to help me grow in my career. Best of all is they appear to want to extend their presence beyond just spots & dots...always a welcome approach in my experience.

I've also started looking at apartments. Very early looks to be honest but in this time I've seen 2 studios and frankly one of them would be much better served being referred to as a slightly larger walk-in closet. And I'm not entirely sure it's not an insult to walk-in closets.

All in all, a very positive start to my time in NY. Not sure what week 2 will bring, but definitely looks to be full of more apt viewings.

Friday, September 13, 2013

New Beginnings

So about a year ago, my life started on a change I couldn't foresee.



New nephew.

Organ removal.

And now I'm about to head to NYC to start another part of the journey. It's always been a dream of mine & now I'm 2 days away from that happening. 

Sure, my FB & IG will house most of my updates, but I think I'll take to this blog a bit more as I start to make that adjustment.

Either way it's time to go from #mia2nyc

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Novela Lessons For Real Life Application

So I'm watching the umpteen rerun of the classic novela, Maria la del Barrio and it occurred how different things would be in real life if we all just learned to be more like the characters in this awesome character pieces. A few observations:

1) Rich people really do want to help the poor succeed, as long as the poor are attractive and don't mind that one of the rich people will do everything in their power to ensure their misery simply because they're poor.

2) After said poor person becomes refined they will adopt a new look that they will not change for absolutely any reason essentially becoming a live action version of a cartoon character with only one outfit.

3) If you walk into a room and your other half is hugging someone you know, it automatically means they are having an affair and you should fly off the handle immediately.

4) All maids, butlers and servants in general will be all up in your business and instead of sending them to hell or firing them, you just roll your eyes as if to say "oh that wacky maid!" and let them continue to be underfoot.

5) Eventually somebody will go insane and either give up their baby or hurt half the cast, the latter will happen with everyone either ignoring the blatant clues or simply not really paying attention.

6) When handed said baby by the crazy person, don't the child over to protective services when you've clearly longed for your own child and could probably just raise it without anyone asking any questions about where it came from.

7) Being evil doesn't mean you'll automatically get what you deserve. Even if you die, you'll be brought back from the dead to continue to wreck havoc on your once closest friends who presumably buried you in the first place yet didn't notice you weren't in the casket.

8) Expressing your thoughts out loud while looking away wistfully is perfectly acceptable, but beware as there WILL inevitably be someone lurking behind a corner who's going to blackmail you with this information later.

9) Pregnancies are ridiculously easy to fake as nobody bothers with silly things like gynocologists or paternity tests.

10) At some point, if you're the villain you're going to get bitch slapped by the protagonist but won't fight back because all you do is plot & eventually kill a secondary or tertiary character that most people didn't really care about while they were alive.

Now, I'm sure there are other life lessons I've missed but I think those are the most relevant. However, please do feel free to add any I may have forgotten. After all, these are the lessons that can only help us grow as people.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Dual Fitness Update!!!

So about 15 days ago I made the decision that I was going to go on a fiscal fast and sort of take advantage to also increase my time at the gym. Since we're about half way into this little experiment I figured I'd give a bit of an update.

As far as the gym goes I've been trying to hit it at least 4 times a week and I was successful at first. I managed to go 5 times during that first week, Sunday to Thursday. I also went this past Monday and Thursday, unable to go Tuesday and Wednesday because I had work related events to attend.

Granted it's because of my job that I'm able to enjoy doing things at absolutely no cost, lending me the opportunity to save on the spending. In the past 15 days I've had several free lunches, gone to a Heat game, the VIP area at Calle Ocho and dinner at a really cool new restaurant. I know that I'm BEYOND lucky to have these experiences and don't any of it for granted at all.

I also have to give a shout out to my sister for her help in the grocery dept. Not only was I able to save some cash on that front, but as a result I've been able to eat at home thereby not needing to spend additional money there either.

So what's the end result of all this fasting? On the body front, I'm definitely feeling better even if the scale isn't demonstrating any significant weight loss. The financial side of things is doing better with almost a $2k increase in my checking account compared to this same time period last month. Not too shabby, huh? Hmmm....maybe this was a pretty good idea after all.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Double The Healthy

So yes it's been a while since I've written here and I completely intend to get back to posting about my theory that we're all just brands that need to learn how to properly market ourselves. However, in the interim I've had a few changes in my life which has led me to issue myself a challenge.

Actually, a double challenge.

I'm going to use the month of March to get in shape, physically AND financially.

Now, it's not like I'm in a financial freefall. And while I've gained about 5 of the 15 pounds I've recently lost, my body isn't about to double for Honey Boo Boo's mom.

Nah, it's more about just working better when I have a deadline or a goal. To that end, I will be using the month of March to hit the gym more and the town less. As with any good challenge, there are rules to follow of course.

1) I have to hit the gym minimum 4 days a week, with an eye on making that 5 as often as possible.

2) No eating out, at all. All food can only be bought as part of my groceries. With that said, if anybody wants to treat me to a night out, let's talk.

3) Eating out is off limits, but so is going out. Doesn't mean I'm turning into a recluse, I can hang out with friends, it just has to be without spending a dime.

4) Since my food intake is limited to groceries, this also means I'm only going to focus on buying items like fruits, vegetables and low calorie snacks. That last part is crucial since it's how I can keep some semblance of sweets going without feeling horrible. Work, however, will be another challenge in itself.

Ultimately I'll report my progress, not that I'm going to tell you people how much I have in my account or my weight, BUT I'll report the amounts I've lost or saved as a result. My goal is also to provide updates on here throughout the month and any tips I find on saving money where possible. After all what's the point of sharing if you can't help others in some way, right?

Oh and if you see me falling off either wagon, please don't be too harsh....ok, be harsh. I could probably use the push. :-)

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Your Brand, Your Self...Self Assessing

Given my last post about assessing one's values, it took a little more time than anticipated, but a promise is a promise. As mentioned, it's not enough to use an adjective there has to be something behind it; essentially what you bring to the table. To that end, I now present what I've determined are the values of my brand.

- Bringing Levity & Positivity to Just About Any Situation: To varying degrees I can be considered funny, but it's not enough just to tell a joke, it's knowing your audience. Even more, you need to know the impact your comments can make. It's the reason that I say "just about any situation," it's all about limits. Sure, the funeral might seem like a great place to joke about the fact that the guy was trampled by a herd of fat ladies outside a Weight Watchers while dressed like an ice cream cone, but maybe wait until the body's in the ground first? If your brand can achieve this, it shows you take yourself just seriously enough.

- Putting Others at Ease: This one's a bit touchy, as most people think humor & positivity can achieve this, but that's not the case. What really makes this ring as a value is incorporating yourself into a conversation in a way that doesn't just come off as someone who knows things. The key here is to never approach a conversation or situation as if you REALLY know everything, but rather have some knowledge about it and want to hear what others have to say. Look, while we all use Wikipedia, we don't want to hang out with the human version. As a brand, you have to be able to talk to everyone, but also know enough to know when you to start listening to others as well.

- A Resource in Times of Need: Please don't interpret this as being a dumping ground or patsy for people who need their couch moved on a Sunday. This is the demonstration of ability to really help, but keeping it to a minimum and only in times of true necessity. Doing so means that people aren't just going to ring for the slightest thing, but rather when only my level of expertise can provide resolution. From a brand perspective, this prevents over exposure and ultimately diluting of the brand. After all, if you're everything to everyone you're probably closer to being nothing to anyone.

There you have it, my brand values. Even if you disagree, the takeaway here is that the value has to be genuine. At the end of the day, even if your brand value is telling others what they don't want to hear, as long as it's sincere and not some Bravo Housewife audition, it's going to be interpreted as such.

However, keep in mind that while your brand values should be consistent that doesn't mean they can't be changed. After all, we all know that consumer behavior can change and that can always lead to reevaluations of what your brand is presenting.