Colombian restaurant again

Having blogger friends is awesome, Toast gave me a little information @ last weeks meet up that has made Kansas City my favorite city again, El Rincon Colombian its still Colombian owned.

When Bea and I had the shock of being greeted by “Banda” when we entered the Colombian restaurant in our last visit there, I was devastated. I have nothing against Mexican brass music, I even like some of it and will dance to it… but it is like walking into your favorite piano bar and being faced with a dude playing the banjo.

A lot of the traditional Colombian plates require either a deep fryer or long preparation. While I have made some of those dishes from scratch before, it becomes a game of picking which ones you have time to do.

Back in Chicago my Mom gets together with my sister and they make awesome Empanadas, but they take them hours of preparations to do. The only thing Bea and I get to do at home in a regular basis is Arepas, which we got Mike addicted to during his visit here.

Having a place where I can go and satisfy a craving for comfort food from my country is important. One of the many reasons why living in Michigan sucked so much was the lack of good restaurants, specially not a Colombian one unless you drove all the way to Chicago.

Think about living in a country, I know Melinda can probably relate, and craving good old KC BBQ and baked beans, or even just a plain old thick cheeseburger with fries. Just the cornbread made here in the US is completely different than anywhere in the world. Think of not being able to be reduced to craving Dominos pizza because it is the only thing available overseas that is even close to what you are used to savoring when you think pizza.

I am happy to inform you all the the owner is back from being out of town. It is a new owner, but he is Colombian and was out of the country getting married. He apologized for my experience when I went to visit my favorites spot on the west side, and assured me that he will take care of us if we go back as a blogger group again. Wookie does not know it, but he will be dragged out there soon, and I know Average Jane is ready for a trip back, we need to set that up… but just let me know when you are ready to get your Colombia fix.

Big Couple

Ever since I stopped being reading buddy I have missed it. I love my job and the rewards of a new feature that its released and makes the job easier for our workers or saves the company money, however it is nothing compared to a kid saying thanks you made it fun to read. I still have the hand drawn cards from the kids I help and I am very proud of having been a part of the program.

Last fourth of July I had the opportunity to be a part of a bowling team to support Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kansas city. Btw, thanks again for all of your generous donations. I have been thinking of Volunteering for this program since I learned about it on TV years ago. So I asked my wife and she was all for it. Since we both work and wanted to make sure we were making the right commitment we decided to become a Big Couple.

We met the director of the program during summer bowl and started the process right away. Last night was our home visit by one of the counselors. We had been filling out forms and giving references for a little while now, but yesterday made it feel real for me. The questionnaire and home visit really made me understand a little better what kind of commitment we are about to make. We both love the thought that we might be able to change a child’s life for the better.

I feel very good about what we are doing because we have such a team behind us. The counselor and everyone we have met from that organization has been very friendly with us. I am sure they make everyone feel this way, but they just keep on saying how perfect we are for the program and how much we can help.

We are not sure how soon we will be matched up with a little, but we are hoping soon. We cannot wait to be able to mentor and connect with a child. Being a volunteer is so rewarding that I crave it from the moment I stopped doing it a couple of years ago.

My Next Tattoo

So I have been itching to get a new tattoo, and it has been a very difficult experience so far.

The last time I got a tat was in Chicago. Both of the shops that I got work done at were very accommodating. Even Jade Dragon which is one of the busiest shops that I have ever been to took care of me the day I came in. That was eight years ago when tattoos were a little less main stream. While some people might disagree with the last statement, I make it because know we have reality TV tattoo shows… and not just one, but several.

While in Michigan I visited a couple of shops, but I did not get a good vibe from either. One of the artists was very talented, I guess the itch was not intense enough back then. A tattoo is something so permanent that you have to trust that your vision and the artist’s talent do match.

I did not expect to walk into a shop here and get a tattoo, I don’t want something that simple. I also know that price has to be figured out once the details of the piece are decided. This is not my first tattoo, but every shop I walk into treats me like a number. I never got a corporate feel from a tattoo shop before, but I am getting that feeling more and more from the shops that I have visited in this city.

I was able to get the name of a couple of artists and I have not had a chance to meet them yet, and maybe that will be my “in.” I almost feel like a weekend warrior on the land of ink. Did everyone getting tats mean that now we are going to have MacTattoo Parlors?

The power of the DMV

The people at the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicle) hold a certain power that they use as a weapon. They know what forms you need. They hold onto that power like it is their sword, and they would never dare to let you know what you need until they have you right in front of them. Why? Well, they want to see your face when they tell you do not have the correct form. That is why they are alive, to see the face of a disappointing person that has to go back to obtain the correct form.

They wear a facade of anger, but internally they are happy, happy that they can tell you no, happy that they have that power, happy that they are making you have to take a little number again and wait for the seemingly random order you are being called on.

That’s right, even to have a question answered you need a number. Why, because again, the interaction that most business have handed to machines to deal with it is still kept alive at the DMV. Instead of being in an endless loop of number pressing, you have a warm body in front of you ready to tell you, get back to the line.

There is simply nothing you can do about it. You need your license or your vehicle titled, you have to go to them. Even though it would seem to be a simpler process handled online, they still want you to come in and bring as many documents as you can so they can have the pleasure to tell you none of the 26 exhibits you have brought are sufficient. And no, it is not allowed to have something faxed, even if it is from another state department, even if will take 3 weeks for it to be obtained by mail, even if you were willing to give a DNA sample.

It is futile to deal with them, it is futile to try to reason, it is futile to try to resist… you don’t even know it, you have already been assimilated.

In other news, I have a Kansas license plate now, YAY, no more dealing with Michigan!