Tuesday, June 28, 2005

ATM Tour and Batman

The news in PR these days contain many instances of what we call the ATM tour or Tour de las ATH(for the spanish letter for at all hours). The idea is that when you are going to your car after a day of shopping or a Big Mac, two men coming out of nowhere and armed with guns force you to let them into your car, make you seat on the back seat and drive you to an ATM machine to make you withdraw the maximum amount allowed ($500 in most PR banks). By then they would have taken the money in your wallet. If you are one of the unlucky ones who gets robbed not at midnight, they will attempt to make you drive them to your house for more money or beat you up rarely do they steal your car. If you get robbed close to midnight they wait until 12:01a.m. to take you to another ATM since at that time the limit is reset.
THE GOOD NEWS: They don't kill the victims
THE BAD NEWS: You are down $500 and scared sh*tless. Since the righteous owner of the bank account is the person who makes the withdrawal the whole FDIC protection thing fails.

Yesterday, scared because of the news and leaving behind a very paranoid pair of parents (see the above paragraph), we went to the biggest mall to see Batman. The biggest mall has good parking and there is security all over the place, but has acquired a bad reputation over the years so I guess they were justified. In any case, Batman was great!! I kind of missed not having funny looking villains but it was still exciting enough. I don't like how they made Bruce seem like a lost soul at times and how they made out his character weak with fear of bats. But a movie being what it is I will forgive the writers.
VERDICT: Predictable but entertaining/absorbing the future looks bright for a new installment of Batman movies.

If only Batman were Puerto Rican, maybe he would fight the ATM Tour mafia!!

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Channels Misplaced

After much searching, I just found ABC and something that looks like the WB and WGN. The satellite company seems to have misplaced them among the local channels... I wish I had found them yesterday...anyone know what happened in Summerland?

Saturday, June 18, 2005


So, it's a little wierd for the two of us to start a blog while we are about 1500 miles apart. Patricia is currently in Puerto Rico, and I -- well, I'm home in Atlanta.

I've spent most of the day playing a little online game called runescape. You should check it out at http://www.runescape.com. It's an MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role playing game) written in Java (hoo-rah!). It's free to play, and there are tons of things to do. You can fish, mine, smith, craft, as well as the usual fight. There are quests to complete, but I'm sorry to say I've finished all of the free-to-play (f2p) quests. I could subscribe to get access to the pay-to-play (p2p) items and quests, but I figure that I might as well continue leveling up on the f2p servers (since I'm still having fun).

I could go on telling you about how I fought some moss giants, defeated a green dragon, and other silly stuff like that, but suffice it to say my day just wasn't as interesting as Patricia's (see her post about hanging the hammock). Don't take me wrong, I've had fun today. I just don't think you'd be interested in hearing about it. ;-)

Hmmm... maybe I should get off the computer - and get on the gamecube. ;-)

Hammock hanging gone wrong

In May we went to Costa Rica with some friends (Mark and Alan). We had a really really good time and like good Americans it all ended at a gift shop center in Sarchi. As we pondered on souvenirs for our friends and family, it occured to me that it would be a good idea to buy Jorge (my dad) a hammock. At Jorge's family's house they have always had a hammock in front of the TV and we are all couch potatos (hence the cable downgrade being a disappointment), so this was to be the perfect gift.

I came home on time for Father's day and my diligent mother arranged for one of their friends (who is from Costa Rica and whose house sports a few hammocks) to come hang up Jorge's on time for tomorrow's celebration.

It all started at 9a.m. although being hispanic the 9a.m. start consists of calling people and trying to rush them to make the ideal noon start time. In any case, their friend came around noon followed by a long 30 minute discussion of the process to follow which (being that their friend is male and so is my dad) included a trip to Home Depot to find the "right tools". Being that they had discussed in full detail the tools needed and that Home Depot is no more than 3 minutes away from our house this was to be a quick trip. Once again, we are hispanic and they are men and my mom and their friends' wife made the mistake of releasing husbands in the wild with credit cards, so 2.5 hours later they came back. I am not really sure what more they bought because it seemed like everything they came back with they already had, but they were smart enough to come food in hand (forseeing the dangers of coming back to hungry impatient wives who surely were to have spent their time together making fun of men's habits.

So after eating, much suspense and finding the metal frame of the wall, we hung the hammock. First test subject was my 250lb dad... no problems. A few oohs and ahhs and be carefuls but otherwise no problem. My dad commented that it wasn't wide enough. The expert friend determined to show the ignorant dad the stretching ability of the hammock sat on it.

Mom: Be careful, Jorge just sat there... be careful (as a true hispanic woman she continued).. we should put up a sign to be careful blah blah blah
Friend: Look Jorge look how much it stretches.
Jorge: Hmmm.
Mom: That is a man who truly believes in his work.

A proud worker, their friend moved forward sat up and jumped up as if to get higher up on the one side. That is how two seconds after my mom mentioned his pride in his work it happened. First a click then a bam! and the laughter finally came as my mom's friend lied down on the floor in disbelief. My sister missed it and almost cried at the sight... "to think that I was not even doing anything important.... Do it again!". My mom's thoughts: "Man, all that to not have a camera!!!"

Lesson: Do not use hooks sold at Home Depot for hanging plants in pots to hang people in hammocks. I'm still laughing and the hammock remains unhanged!

Friday, June 17, 2005

What do you mean no cable?

I am currently in Puerto Rico. After 7 years and 3 degrees at Tech, I will be working in July and so I came home before I start.
Puerto Rico is a beautiul island. The beaches here are absolutely awesome, the food is excellent, it is warm all year round (it means only one set of clothes: summer) and the culture is very relaxed. However, when you have grown up here it feels more like it is too hot always, traffic sucks (worse traffic than Atlanta traffic) and the best beaches are crowded which makes one less than relaxed.

In any case, my family lives closer to the mountains (30 minutes away fromt he beach), it is not so hot, there is always a breeze and we don't have to stumble into rush hour traffic very much at all so really I don't have it that bad so I can come, spend time with my family and relax. However, I am faced with a very big challenge when it comes to enjoying myself: my parents have unsubscribed from 90% of the cable (satellite really) channels that matter.

Whoever has heard of paying for cable if you don't even get NBC and ABC? Who cares if you get QVC, HSN and ESPN if there is not a single movie channel. I can watch TV from all around the spanish speaking world, but I can't see old one hit wonder singers jinx current one hit wonder singers on Thursday night! This is outrageous, were they not informed that we didn't subscribe to any movie channels in Atlanta because we were counting on catching up on all the movies we hadn't seen during our vacations in Puerto Rico? How can we have quality family time if our nice big TV only plays cartoons? Not to mention local Puerto Rico TV is a moral, health and intelligence hazard.

I am afraid of what I will be surprised with when we come visit for Christmas. Now, to google to figure out what people did for entertainment before there was cable.

First Post

After much thinking about it, we have joined the blog fad.

Who are we?
We are a young married Christian couple living in Atlanta. Jamil is originally from Florida and I am from Puerto Rico. We have been living in Atlanta for over 7 years and met in college while attending Georgia Tech.

What will we write about?
We'll see.