Google+ Two-Wheeled Tourist: January 2011


Motorcycles get NO respect at Woodlake Village Apartments (Columbus, OH)

My motorcycle has been parked in the same place in the complex's overflow lot since the last snow flurry fell approximately a week ago. From previous experience of digging the bike out of the ice when it was located near the rear of the lot, Matt and I parked Eleanor in the spot closest to the exit of the lot where extra car traffic melted the ground faster. We thought that was a clever idea and we were in the overflow lot where, by policy, extra resident-owned vehicles could park regardless of a resident's location on the property. The complex's management decided to counteract that with a move that truly lacked common sense and insight.

Thanks to numbing temperatures plummeting below zero, roads inside of the property have remained frozen. Despite that fact, I received a phone call on Saturday from the apartment's management office requesting that I move my motorcycle from its spot immediately or risk having my bike towed. I asserted to the lady on the phone that the parking lot's condition (unplowed and icy) were unsafe conditions for me to move my vehicle. Of course, she wouldn't have any of that because "the overflow lot is not a storage facility."

Despite the fact that there were eight additional cars that were unmoved and still covered in snow from the last storm, I figured my bike was targeted because someone decided to bitch that they couldn't park twenty feet closer to their apartment than everyone else. Sadly enough, they failed to consider that my motorcycle cannot pass safely through unplowed, icy roads without risking injury to myself and damage to my machine.

Matt and I made a plan. We took advantage of their stupidity - we had been told to move our motorcycle, but were not told "how far" to move it.

We let Sunday pass without incident (the office was closed) and sprang into action on Monday with a plastic snow pusher and two hockey sticks. We were lucky that day; temperatures rose to 26°F and made the ice just soft enough to easily separate from the roadway. About half an hour later Matt had dug a channel almost fifty feet across the lot to another parking space while I used the hockey stick to clear errant blocks of snow and more of the roadway. Several residents had watched what we were doing and were probably scratching their heads as well.

Once that was done, I took off Eleanor's bike cover and Matt fired her up. She started immediately with an angry roar that could be heard throughout the property. Matt then took her off of centerstand and gingerly guided her into her new spot almost directly across from the last spot. I assisted in rotating her so she would face outward toward the road, ready to leave this dump the first chance she gets.

Easy does it...
As you can see, the move was quite pointless.

We made our disgust pretty well known and we will go out of our way to discourage people from even considering this place, especially if they own motorcycles. So, if you're an active motorcyclist who uses the motorcycle year-round as an actual vehicle and is looking for a cheap place to live, AVOID the Woodlake Village Apartments in Columbus (on Westerville Rd. just south of OH-161). Their treatment of motorcycles in the wintertime is extremely pathetic and it only encourages me to look for better housing elsewhere when we can eventually afford it.

Woodlake Village, you guys so FAIL.


Gotta give props to my fellow USC Trojan.

Being gainfully underemployed as of late, I found myself looming around YouTube in between online job searches and coming across a professional moviemaker named "freddiew" who has his own exclusive channel on the site. I later came to find out that not only is he a former world Guitar Hero tournament champion, he's also a fellow alumnus of the University of Southern California and a graduate of the USC School of Cinema-Television (now known as the School of Cinematic Arts).

Being the aspiring filmmaker and a professional videographer during my time in California, I was very entertained and inspired by his short skits that demonstrated his excellent storyboarding and editing skills with Final Cut Pro and Adobe AfterEffects among other things. I originally applied to USC's film school back in 2003 but ended up receiving an English degree and a minor in Education. But, I still have that dream of doing something greater with my freelance videotaping and technology talents than just teaching a random high school digital media class.

Watching these videos just made me smile, laugh a bit, think about home (many of his short films were shot on campus at USC, nearby Downtown LA, and even a short jaunt to the Mulligan's in Torrance) and help me hope that perhaps someday, my mixed bag of skills may be of use to someone at a larger scale. It also reminded me of how much could have been possible for me if I didn't have to keep swimming upstream in unnecessary condescension with the words "you can't do this" ringing through my head for over 25 years. I can still remember when my father said to me that going to film school was not what Asian females do, a "complete waste of time," and that I was going to be nothing more than a "jack of all trades, master of none" if I followed my passions rather than finding a job that made money. I ignored him (I still do, with authority, as a matter of fact) and went on to run a successful DVD production company for over ten years. I guess I can consider that a personal victory.

Here's to someone that not only enjoys what he does, but does it extremely well and makes a wonderful career of it. Fight On (and enjoy the guns)!


Dear Ohio, I need a job...

...that actually gives me hours, doesn't treat me like a seasonal worker, and has a wage I can actually live on.

I came to Ohio with hopes of starting anew and possibly finding career opportunities that would suit my interests and talents. At this moment, that's not the case. In a very strange turn of events, I find myself looking back to the Golden State for job positions with any sort of consistency. On a bright note, I get to go back to my home state. The catch? It'll just be me going back while we figure out what to do with living logistics.

After applying to who-knows-how-many positions and not getting any leads locally, I've moved my search to places more familiar and much farther away than where we are. It's a gamble I'm taking with hopes that a new position would offer more experiences in other markets and a steadier income so we can do things that normal people do, like have savings.

More to come soon on these happenings. Regardless of whether I stay or go I do hope for better pay and happier surroundings.