What a difference a year can make. About a year ago, I decided to write a blog post daily. While it has not always been easy to think up topics, I have definitely learned and expanded my interests during this exercise. I am not sure if I will continue this blog next year or start a new one, but I will definitely continue writing. Often times people wonder about tomorrow, but they never actually think about how long it takes to actually get to tomorrow. Our days can be broken down into hours, minutes, and seconds, and with each second we have a chance to make a change that we want to see for tomorrow. In order to make the future we want to see tomorrow, we must take a minute to begin working on the hour that will become the day of tomorrow. Each day of this year, as short as they seemed, added up to make the year that we are currently ending. As I look back on this year, I can see plans that blossomed well and others that fizzled out, and I have realized that the only difference between the two is the time that was put into preparation and execution. The plans that turned out well were well prepared and the others were thrown together foolishly. In the year 2016, I am going to make sure that I use the time that I have much more wisely, every second counts and I will treat every second like a fraction of my day rather than time to be wasted. This year went by quickly, as does every year, but that is no reason to let another second pass on working towards your goals and dreams. I am excited for this new year, not because it is new, but because I get another year to grow and improve the world that I live in. Happy New Year everyone! Thanks for reading along throughout the year.
I was doing quite a bit of driving today, and as I found myself stuck in the annoyance that is traffic, I began to wonder if any situation could possibly be more annoying. In order to pass the time and keep my sanity, I decided to think of things that are more annoying than being stuck in New York City traffic, these are the top 10 things I could come up with.
1. Being stuck in Los Angeles traffic
2. Being stuck in India’s traffic
3. A Chalkboard being scratched.
4. Waiting in line at the DMV
5. Dropping a freshly made meal on the floor
6. Losing money
7. Getting into a car accident
8. Flights getting delayed
9. Cancelled plans
10. Sales Calls
The list could honestly go on forever, but I guess the basic gist is that an annoying moment can always be trumped by another. Whenever I find myself in an annoying or painful situation, I like to remember that these times are temporary and that no matter what it could be worse. I am glad to say that I am finally out of traffic, and while that moment felt like it would last forever, now that it is gone it is once again nothing more than a bullet on the list of annoying situations.
I was never one to get too excited over meeting a celebrity. I have found that I generally like to give people their space rather than to ask for a photo or an autograph, but I seem to be in the minority in that aspect. Today, I noticed that a former Major League Baseball player works out at the same gym as me, and instead of bothering him to sign my shoes or take a photo, I just allowed him to work out in peace. Living in New York I have had multiple run ins with people who would be considered famous, and while the level of fame of these individuals varies, I imagine they all value privacy as much as the rest of us. I am not trying to say I have never been “star struck,” but even when I was a child who was meeting his favorite athlete, I realized that they were just as human as myself. When I noticed the athletes who I regularly watched play on television or from the crowd were not much taller than my father, I started to see them differently. I realized that these people were not the larger than life figures that I once thought they were, and that they were just ordinary people with some extraordinary talents. It may seem strange, but I have actually seen some “famous” individuals who seemed to be expecting to be approached, but were shocked that everyone was busy with their own lives rather than fussing about them. I know that everybody is different, and that many of these celebrities may actually enjoy the attention, but I will continue to treat them the same way I expect to be treated when I am a stranger just trying to enjoy my day.
The Kansas City Royals are the 2015 Wold Series Champions. This scrappy bunch of players finally completed the goal they planned to accomplish in the 2014 season, and that was to bring home a world championship. It is rare these days for a team to make it to the World Series two years in a row, but the Royals defied the odds, and managed to not only make it once again, but to win it all. Last year, the Royals were eliminated in dramatic fashion during the final game of the World Series, so this year they managed to leave little room for the same outcome. The Royals won in five games and made sure each win showcased the strength of their late game bats. In my World Series preview post, I said the Royals must keep the Mets score low in order to allow for their usual late game heroics, and that is exactly how they managed to win the series. The Royals were trailing in every game played during this series, but their “never say die” attitude caused them to be able to defy the odds, and be crowned champions. I definitely want to congratulate the Royals on a stellar season, and as a Yankee fan, thank them for saving me from hearing the Mets fans of New York berating my team. The Royals are a very good team, and now they have a trophy to show for it. With the talent the Royals possess, I imagine that they will be playing in the championship series for many years to come.
The Major League Baseball World Series will finally begin tomorrow night. In this seven game series the two best teams in baseball will face off to see who is worthy of raising the championship trophy. The team that is representing the NL is the New York Mets, while the AL will have the Kansas City Royals as their representative. Both of these teams are very talented and they both seem to be on an unquenchable hot streak, but unfortunately one of these teams must lose. The Mets are coming into this match up with some of the best young pitching talent that has ever been seen in the playoffs, and along with the stellar batting performances of Daniel Murphy, they have been defeating teams before the game reaches its half way point. I expect the Mets to continue to pitch well, but I just can’t see Murphy keeping up this pace of hitting throughout the playoffs. The Royals have a couple of great pitchers, but their strength comes from their hitting. There have been countless times during the playoffs when the Royals have had their backs against the wall, only to be saved by the clutch bats in their lineup, and they will likely need a few clutch performances to defeat the Mets in the World Series. I can’t make a pick for this series since both teams are extremely talented, but what I can say is that in order for the Mets to win, they need to pitch well early and keep hitting late in the game. If the Royals want to win, they have to keep the score low, and force the Mets’ relief pitchers to try and contend with their generally hot late inning bats. Tuesday night marks the beginning of the end of the MLB season, it has definitely been an interesting one. I’m sure this World Series will be like sweet frosting on top of the already appealing MLB season.
The Major League Baseball season has finally come to an end. The longest season of all major sports in the USA has now made way for one of the most interesting postseason starts in sports. While the MLB season has 162 games, there is a very important one game playoff that takes place as soon as it ends, in order for two wildcard teams to make it into the real tournament. This year’s games feature the Yankees, the Astros, the Cubs, and the Pirates, four teams that have played as hard as any this season. The NL matchup for the wildcard pits two teams, that are extremely familiar with each other, in a nine inning winner take all showdown. The Cubs and Pirates are in the same division, so they have played a whopping 19 games against each other this season, with the Cubs winning 11 times. Although the Cubs have a history with the Pirates, season series records don’t mean much in the playoffs since it is up to the players and the fans to bring enough energy to get their team to another game. The Yankees and Astros have played a few games this season, but neither team has managed to show that they are truly superior to the other, I am a Yankee fan so my allegiance is set, but this game looks to be a tough one for both teams. The MLB wildcard games are the most exciting games of the season, four teams enter with only nine innings to show that they belong in the playoffs, I can’t wait to see who comes out on top as these teams will definitely give it their all in the hopes of reaching the championship round.
Chick-fil-A is a fast food restaurant that is famous for their ads featuring cows urging humans to “eat mor chikin.” Chick-fil-A has been around for years now, but until today they did not have any legitimate public locations within New York City. Not many New Yorkers were aware that there is a Chick-fil-A within the NYU food court, so most people had to wait until they ventured out of New York State before they could get their hands on one of those famous chicken sandwiches. I was never a huge fan of traveling a long distance just to get some fast food, but Chick-fil-A has managed to gain a noteriety that few other fast food chains could ever attain. New York City’s first fully loaded public Chick-fil-A restaurant is now opened in Manhattan, and I expect the lines to be very long for a very long time. The interesting thing about opening a new restaurant in New York City is how popular it can become, and how long the popularity can last. The location of the new Chick-fil-A is also extremely conducive to the chain’s inevitable success as it is right in midtown Manhattan, close to all of the tourists traps and business. I know the lines will be long, and the trip down to midtown is not exactly ideal, but I will certainly find my way to the new restaurant at least twice before the end of the year. I know some New Yorkers may find the idea of going to midtown for some fast food to be absurd, but I’m sure they will gladly make the trip once they have tasted one of the best fast food chicken sandwiches around.
The Pope’s much anticipated trip to the United States has come and gone, and it was quite a showing here on the east coast. Pope Francis, who is affectionately known as “the people’s pope,” was welcomed with cheers and signs, a sight that was more reminiscent of a concert or sporting event than of the arrival of a religious figure. During this trip, Pope Francis did many things that no other pope has ever done including speaking in front of congress, and while this man is seen as a different kind of pope by many, he has kept to the teachings that the Catholic Church has stood by for many centuries, and that comes as no surprise to me. For some reason the media felt as though it was the Pope’s duty to rewrite the teachings that he has followed for decades, many reporters thought this man would come to the United States and tell all Catholics to change theirs beliefs in order to fit the norms of the current era. I am not a Catholic, but I found it a bit funny and somewhat ludicrous that the mainstream media felt that the Pope would completely change the church that he has been part of for most of his life, in order to make our pop culture centric society more comfortable. In my opinion Pope Francis did exactly what he set out to do on this trip, he wanted to show that he is caring and compassionate, he wanted people to see the faith that he professes in action rather than by words alone. I personally may not agree with everything the Pope says, but the compassion he showed to the sick, the homeless, and the imprisoned is incontestable. I am happy that the country was willing to welcome the Pope as it did, hopefully his actions will resonate with the citizens of this nation, and people here would be willing to be more companionate and helpful to each other for years to come.
One of the greatest things I have attained from growing up in the Bronx is a great understanding of multiple different cultures. Since the United States is called a melting pot, New York City should be characterized as the area with the most flavor. Many people who have only seen the Bronx on television may not know what this borough is like, but I as a life long resident, can attest that the Bronx is much more diverse than what is shown on television. What I loved about growing up in the Bronx, was being able to meet and mingle with people of many different cultures and share our inherent similarities in peace. This weekend I was privileged enough to attended, and be a part of two weddings of a couple of friends that I have known for quite some time. The weddings I attended this weekend reminded of the diversity of the Bronx. One of the weddings was an Italian wedding, and the other wedding was a Dominican wedding. Both weddings had traditional American wedding elements, and both even shared some of the same rituals, but where they differed the most was the receptions. While I had a blast at each wedding, I was intrigued by how small differences in culture, can make a seemingly generic wedding much more unique. This weekend was emotional, fun, and very tiring, weddings are stressful events but overall they are probably one of the most awarding of life’s many achievements. I love a good wedding, and I am grateful that I was able to be part of two of them in one weekend, hopefully my wedding can be just as fun for the guests, and memorable for myself and my future bride.
Today marks the 14th anniversary of the terrible events that took place at the World Trade Center. Many people would say the world has changed since 9/11 and unless you were actually old enough to remember the events, that idea will sound odd, but the world is actually a much different place today. I honestly can’t say 9/11 changed everything, since we have had immense advancements in science and technology, but I will say it absolutely changed this country’s perception on safety. Thinking back to the summer prior to the terrible events of that day, I was just a kid going on my first international trip, it was my first time on a plane, and there was nothing to worry about. I remember being able to board the plane with very little hassle, almost no restrictions, and being able to look right into the cockpit from my seat. Everything I remember from that first international flight experience is now completely archaic. Ever since that day, our country has been on a seemingly endless war to bring those responsible for these acts to justice, and we as a country have been kept in relative darkness in terms of what is going on. In a sense the world is a different place because we no longer have our artificial certainty of tomorrow. Before 9/11, nobody thought as hard about their travels as they do today, I wouldn’t say life was simpler because I was just a kid at the time, but from my standpoint, I know my parents kept a “longer leash” on me and my siblings before those events. In the 14 years since 9/11 the city has begun to rebuild and the scenery of Lower Manhattan has changed, but those who have been lost are definitely not forgotten. Many things have changed over the last 14 years, but the bravery of the first responders, and the impact of the lives of those lost that day will always be remembered as they once were. Today as America remembers the worst event on our soil, and how it changed everything, I hope the memory of those lost stays the same in the minds and hearts of their friends and loved ones.