Friday, December 30, 2005

Alien head

Alien head
Originally uploaded by banteron.
I've had a lot of fun with this software called "Photobooth". I just turned off the lights and started making faces using the various filters. I further tweaked them in Photoshop to get just the look I wanted. This is the best time of the year to work inside on the computer. It is raining and cold outside. These are the days when I am glad that I bought this contraption.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Lag Time

During the days between Christmas and New Year's Eve we have a lot of people who are tired of looking at their relatives and want to get out and explore a little. The restaurant has been pretty busy because folks are either still on holiday or the kids haven't returned to school. The weather has been pretty nice today, but the past few days have been a heavy downpour. The Russian and Napa rivers were on flood watch.It's a good time to catch a flick or go to a museum. Unfortunately, there are no lunches being served for the staff until around three-thirty, and it is a family style meal which is held in the Simi room. Hey, I will take whatever they are dishing out. I already had a bag of "Inka Nuts" and a Red Bull to tide me over.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Work.... it just is.

It is come to my attention that some of the perks that I was fortunate enough to have as part of my position here at the CIA are being compromised. From now on I won't be receiving a dinner for two as a token gift for giving group tours after hours. From now on, concierges will recieve 3 points for each tour, and those points will add up to 9 which will THEN qualify you for a $100 dollar coupon at the restaurant. I for one, am not impressed with the nickel and dime squeeze that is taking place. Since I love my job however, I will put up with this scaling back even though the incentive for giving tours after hours makes me feel less appreciated.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Festivities Galore

Last night was the annual Open-House Holiday Party at Greystone. There were Gingerbread houses, Cookie decorating, A choral group singing Christmas songs and Plates of oer duerves. There were lots of people and kids amping up on sugar and sodas. I stuck around until after six to take pictures and most of those are on my other computer. I am too lazy to get off my butt to go over and get them onto this computer to make this post appear relevant. Instead of having a stupid picture of a holiday party , I am adding a more interesting picture of myself mugging the camera with one finger admonishing the viewer... Capiche?

Thursday, December 15, 2005

My 55th Birthday

Well today I reached a speed limit of sorts in terms of the number of years I have gained here on earth. I celebrated at the CIA's Wine Spectator Restaurant with my family and a my friend Reid. There were nephews, nieces, brother-in-laws and babies. Hamish, Rita, Martha, Ernie, Terry, Camille, Ian, Mary-Kay, Antonella and her mom, Edward, Reid and of course little Maisy. She was warm and comfortable throughout dinner and did not make a peep. Camille entertained herself by crawling under the table exploring. Dinner was great. We had the temptations which included Foix Graux (sp?) Acorn Squash soup, Olive Tapanade, and then came the first courses. I had Spinach Risotto and Trout, Rita had a Hangar Steak, Martha had Scallops and Reid had some sort of Chicken Dish. The food was fantastic and so were the desserts which include Creme Brulee and a Hot Chocolate Lava cake with Grand Manier Cream. We had a delightful evening and It was great seeing everyone. Plans have been made to meet at Martha's for a White Elephant Christmas on the 26th.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Birthday Time

As my 55th birthday approaches, I ma reflecting on the idea that I have reached a metaphorical "Speed Limit". I am in the autumn of my years so to speak, and every day I look for ways to insure my comfort as time goes bye. I wasn't sure if I wanted to go to the employee Christmas Party this year, but glad that I did because of the delicious food and wonderful setting. The band was terrific and even though I didn't stay late, I had a good time. This year they had a little puppet chow called, "le Cirque de Cafe" which featured knives, forks and spoons in a fantasy circus motif with accordian accompaniment. It was entertaining and silly all at once. Next Tuesday evening I will be celebrating my Birthday in the Wine Specatator Greystone Restaurant with family and friends. My hope is that a certain special someone will show... we shall see.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

December is here

Today I slept in... It is still my vacation and I am taking full advantage of it. We had a wicked storm hit the west coast last night and It looks like that it will be around for the rest of the week. I have been playing on the computer here, learning new things like how to hack web pages, how to post awesome pics that I have created in Photobooth/Photoshop and tonight I am going to create a lightscribe DVD. What fun !