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4th of July (Wednesday, July 7, 2004)

Well, Saturday was my brother's birthday party, and that was fun. I actually managed to win a single elimination tournament of bumper pool, which I'm usually pretty bad at. The final bracket came down to me and my father — I would expect him to be in the final bracket, because it's his table, and he's good at that sort of thing, but I really thought the other contender would be Kristin Brindle, who plays quite a bit herself.

On Sunday, the 4th of July, I went to Lowe's and spent money! Well, I took back the broken tiki torch, and got a new one, along with some other fun stuff. Unfortunately, I didn't actually get my money back for the tiki torch — I got a "gift card", which is annoying as hell. But I'm sure I'll be spending more money there before too long. I got my garage all cleaned out, and I assembled my new garage storage. Next up, I have to hang the bikes on the new racks I got, and see if I can hang up the new ladder (and the old ladder, now that I think about it).

Then Sunday night, I went to DC with Claire and her family and watched the fireworks from the Reflecting Pool. Of course, we had to park up by the 9:30 Club so we'd have our car by the club later, and then we took the Metro back to the tourist district. But we got off at Archives which put us at 7th Street, while Claire's family was at 23rd Street. So, we walked the 16 blocks down, and made it just in time. Luckily, the weather cooperated, and the crowds were light, and it was a pretty good show. Afterwards, we walked the 16 blocks back to Archives to let what little crowd there was die down, and then we took the Metro back to the 9:30 Club. The music was phenomenal, but in true Brian form, right before Paul Oakenfold came on, I slipped on some bar sludge and fell down a flight of stairs. As I was hurt, the nice staff at the 9:30 Club invited me to leave — either find an emergency room, or they'd call me an ambulance. I should have insisted on staying for the rest of the show, or got their insurance and legal information. But I'm not a bastard, and so I didn't think of that at the time. So I only got to hear Oakenfold from the back room, and I got to spend most of the night in the Fair Oaks emergency room. Luckily (if you can call it that), I'm okay, except for a sore elbow and a really big bruise on my ass.

So after leaving the emergency room, and watching the sun rise, we had McDonald's, and then Claire took me back to my place where we crashed for a few hours. Later in the afternoon, Claire came and got me, and we went downtown to Friday's for dinner, and then on to see the new World War II memorial. I'm sure the memorial would be pretty spectacular with the fountains going, but alas they were not. Afterwards, we headed back to Claire's for birthday cake and presents. Claire's dad made just about the best chocolate cake I can ever remember eating — it was so good, I actually had a second piece.

Yesterday, I worked from home because my backside was still pretty sore, but last night, Claire came over, we had Tippy's, watched many episodes of Friends, and then took a big chunk out of the cleaning effort. We filled an entire 13 gallon garbage bag with old paper work. I found three missing credit cards in the pile, along with important insurance documents. This cleaning stuff is useful. Too bad I let the problem get so far out of control.

So today, I'm at the office, and I got a bunch of work stuff done. I also figured out some financing stuff for this new house I keep dreaming about buying. I'm getting closer though. Today is the two year anniversary of the first time Claire and I kissed, so we're going to celebrate by cooking dinner (probably pizza) and then cleaning some more. Let me tell you how exciting that will be! Actually, she says she got me a "prezzy", so it'll be interesting to see what that is.

And then tomorrow, we've got the Hanson concert at the Warner Theatre, and I think we'll try to hit a nice restaurant before hand. Okay, I think I've typed as much as I can for now. I think it's time to get ready to head for home. Until next time... adios!

—Brian (7/7/2004 4:38 PM)
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