Month: June, 2012

No Mono Loco

Despite living in Charlottesville for four years and occasionally visits in the past two, this was my first experience at Mono Loco.  Even though it scored relatively highly amongst reviewers, I wasn’t super impressed.  Friends got the nachos, and I struggled to pick from an extensive burrito’s list.  The portions are ginormous, so if you’re looking for quantity, this will definitely fulfill that requirement.  The dishes weren’t very memorable.

The nachos’ cheese didn’t look like anything amazing, but it did have many ingredients sprinkled all over.  It can easily serve as the main dish for two (maybe three) females.  As for the burrito, I would suggest going with the bowl unless you really enjoy the wrap.  It’s nothing like Chipotle because if you actually tried to eat it with your hands, it would turn into a hot mess after one bite.

For those looking for suggestions, here are three favorite comparable (perhaps slightly higher) priced places to try out:


Billy Jean Boy

I only wish I had the confidence of this 9 year-old boy.  Seth willingly provided free entertainment to everyone at Eye Street Optical.

Tudor Place

Despite the summer heat, I ventured off to the Tudor Place for an hour-long $8 1 pm hour long docent-led tour.  I was greeted by Jeralynn, the Director, who was very knowledgable and welcoming.  There are plenty of events and more to see from the Washington collection at the house during President’s Day.  Also, May is their busiest month.

Because of my timing, I was the only one with my guide, Jo.  If you are interested in a historical narrative of how one of the largest estates in Georgetown came into existence, then this is for you!  She presented a through and detailed tour of the house, family background, and their significance during the Civil War era.

Since there is no photography inside, you will have to plan a visit to see the fine Washington Collection.  Here are pictures of the maze-like garden (which you must stroll through) and exterior of the home.

It takes roughly 7 minutes at a mission-style walking pace to reach from 31st and M Streets to the entrance on the left side of 31st after Avon Lane.  You will throughly envy the gorgeous Georgetown row houses as you approach.

On the way back, consider taking a different route and walking down Wisconsin Avenue.  You will find a few empty stores (economic and construction reasons, I’m sure), apparel shops, and dining options.  For a good three blocks, I forgot I was in Washington.

Hump (a man?) Day

There is nothing more refreshing to see in our nation’s capital than almost naked men support at-risk men.  As I left Union Station at 8:30 am this morning for the Circulator to Georgetown.  I came across the Men’s Warehouse Suite Drive Kickoff:



I felt like I was participating in a movement.  It’s their 5th year doing this, the program has been successful and is designed to help put men back at work in 11 cities across the country, hoping to improve our dismal economy.  I wonder how the community would react if women advertised themselves like so?

Finally, I leave you with the Congress Clown.

Dabble Dabble Dabble – White Board Drawing Tools

For work, I learned about a free virtual whiteboard drawing company: Dabble Board.  It’s pretty intuitive to use, so you’ll pick it up easily.  My top two out of their ten listed reasons for using Dabble would be the collaboration aspect and instant straightening line correction.  The collaborative feature is similar to what Google has through Google Docs.  Since I have limited control of the lines I’m drawing on my trackpad, the auto-straighten feature was a huge plus!  The two major drawbacks were the non-existent gridlines and the fact that you could only select one item at a time while grouping.

Another service called Twiddla offers gridlines, but it doesn’t automatically straighten your lines.  This is actually more reflective representation of writing on whiteboard than Dabble Board, but for those who are favor clean and sleek lines, then Dabble away!

Speaking of illustration programs and software, Abode now offers Creative Cloud as an innovative business model for their Adobe products.  It includes Adobe Creative Suite® desktop tools, Adobe Photoshop® Lightroom® 4*, and new applications like Adobe Muse™ and Adobe Edge preview.  Note: it’s still limited to installation on two devices.

p.s. I bought my first dryer today!  Well, it’s actually a late gift to my mom, but it still counts.

Share Your Thoughts

As a recent alumnus of the University of Virginia, I have been ferociously tracking the controversial resignation of Teresa Sullivan as President.  If you would like to give the Board of Visitor’s your opinion on the matter, click here to access the Alumni Feedback page.  It closes tomorrow.

This was my submission:

Since graduation, I have learned a lot about politicking in the workplace. I saw a little bit of it in the organizations I was involved in on grounds: Student Council, Residence Life, and International Relations Organization. However, it wasn’t until recently when the CEO/President of my company received backwater treatment from our Board of Directors. He was asked to resign effective immediately without any warning. As someone who truly cared for the company and it’s mission, he was confused and hurt as was the staff. Luckily for him, he is already a well-established lawyer and teacher in Washington, so he it didn’t take him long to bounce back. When this happened in early February, I instantly lost faith in the leadership of the company and truly questioned their actions. Our Board didn’t have the slightest understanding of the staff’s daily duties, and I doubt they cared. In my opinion, they dismissed a President who presented them with the challenges (including financial) of our business model. They stuck with the old model and refused to consider the proposals the ex-President suggested. After much thought and no progress or changes, I left the company in May.

When I heard about Mrs. Sullivan’s resignation, I (along with my friends – fellow U.Va. alumni) was shocked and had a de ja vu moment. What has our society come to? I understand that while the University of Virginia is a multi-million dollar non-profit, there are similarities that one can draw from the small educational public policy based non-profit experience.

Boards are created to ensure the company fulfills it’s mission. Since you are familiar with the University’s stated purpose, I know you will make the right decision regarding how to best enhance the environment to support open debates and a lifetime of learning. It’s not only through online education.

The members of the Board of Visitors are supposedly well-established women and men with ample business background. I would have expected them to understand that jumping on the bandwagon isn’t going to solve your financial problems. Currently, I work for a non-profit dedicated to Open Course Ware in order to provide free online college courses (unaccredited). From my short time here, I would never substitue my undergraduate experience for online courses. Even with technological advancements such as realtime conferencing, I do not believe there is anything that can adequately substitute the dialogue (verbal and written) that I had fellow peers and faculty.

Mrs. Sullivan recognized the weaknesses of the University whether you wanted to hear it or not. These issues will not disappear overnight or with a new President. We must, as the Rector stated, deal with them now and reevaluate our business model. If you want to take a risk with online education, then so be it. Personally, I think our society would reap greater benefits if we invested in our faculty instead.

As you leave Georgetown to Rosslyn, you will pass the Francis Scott Key Park.

Thigh Hair

Along with the struggle of balancing career and family, young ambitious women deal with daily female chores like primping oneself.  I was raised that the hair on my legs, arm pits, and everywhere is fine.  It could be my mother’s conventional and/or foreign values, but as an insecure (and somewhat rebellious) teenager, I didn’t buy into it.  I did believe that waxing was superior to shaving, so I began waxing my legs.  My high pain tolerance and laziness made waxing the perfect fit for my lifestyle.  For convenience purposes such as while I’m traveling, I will break out the razor.  Recently, I have tired the Epilator, however, it simply cut my hair instead of removing it from the rooms.

Until college, I didn’t realize women are actually expected to shave up their thigh.  My friends can attest to the fact that my Asian hair is very fine, soft, and barely noticeable unless your face is right up next to it.  I know how lucky I am, and I am very grateful.  Thus, I wanted to see what it is that other women have to suffer when removing thigh hair.

I took my wax kit (you can find this at your local pharmacy or Wal-Mart) and waxed my thighs.  Outcome: smoother thighs – duh.  It was painless and not nearly as messy or time consuming as I imagined.  At the same time, it was a waste of wax and ultimately unnecessary for me.  Also, are we supposed to wax the back of our thighs?  If so, then I obviously did not.  Can’t wait to laser my legs!


Sometimes you find inspiration at the most unexpected moments, but today I ventured to two predictable ones: Artomatic and Good Stuff Eatery.  Luckily, my amazing company tolerated and encouraged my “ah yes, now I am inspired to make art”.  Art lovers are out of luck.  Today was the last day (go at least a week before the end because some of the exhibits had left) of the showing, but they don’t close until 1 am!  Food lovers are in luck.  Good Stuff Eatery will still be in Capitol Hill (I don’t actually think the food at this location is any better than Crystal City’s; it’s statistics), Crystal City, and Georgetown (Fall 2012)!

A few pictures to document the varied Artomatic works we viewed and participated in today.  Most of my comments about the project: overwhelming, extreme, I can do that, that’s art (?/!), naked woman, and I don’t understand it.

Digitally edited from the original paper-cut artwork to look like a sketch; this was the first piece of the day that inspired me to reconnect with my artistic side.

The top piece was titled something along the lines of “The First Experience”. The explanation of the display on the floor was the reenactment of sperms attacking an egg. I call this “The First Attack”.

We have decided that will enter the Peeps contest next year. Here is “Pixelated Peeps”.

Review of the Good Stuff Eatery at Crystal City: Burger’s were just the right size aka the amount of food when you order a shake and fries (even if you split the latter items) will keep you full for several hours.  We had three different selections of burgers at the table, and everyone enjoyed their choices, so I doubt you can go wrong with what you pick.  They have an assortment of condiments.  Their shakes are like sucking ice cream through a straw – delicious.  Go for  the Village fries!  Appropriately priced for the quality.

Waiting Game

I interviewed with the State Department and passed their examinations for a CA/LNA position.  To sum up my 6:45 am arrival to 4:30 pm departure, people without patience should not apply to positions with the Foreign Service.

If you are one who hates waiting at the doctor’s office or right before a scheduled test, then you will most likely find the process cumbersome.  Even if you pass, your offer is conditional and then you’re placed on a Register only to wait several more months to see the outcome!

Waterfront Fountain

You knew I was going to do something ridiculous today because it was above 75 degrees before 6:30 am as I walked the dog.  I work in an office right by the restored Georgetown Waterfront Park.  Everyday, rain or shine, I hear screams of joy and relief.  When I peak out for an afternoon walk, I see children, teenagers, and occassionally adults frolicking happily and carefree.

I will sit on the benches envying them because for most people it’s only socially acceptable to join in the fun if you are:

  • under the age of 8
  • parent of a child already playing in the fountain
  • wearing workout clothing
  • dare friends
  • having a white t-shirt contest

Of course, I don’t fall into any or my own requirements, but what the heck.  It’s 98 degrees (feels like a 100) and to celebrate the record day I went through the fountain and only got a tiny bit wet because I forgot about gravity.  If you want to feel like a kid again (or smell like a public pool), you know where to go.

Photo Credit: David Rose