Winter & Cold running

Snow, often makes you cold.

Happy Holidays,

With the beginning of winter and the snow in the area running becomes more of a challenge. The cold makes it much more difficult than warmer weather as muscles become harder to move and easier to stiffen up. Your feet can also get cold from the water and snow seeping into your shoes.

While the cold is an obstacle, it can be mitigated by proper equipment. First item for winter running is a rain jacket. Essential for any rainy day run this will keep your body warmer me dry. Second running tights, while not my favorite for rainy days are one of the best items of clothes to have for cold days. On warmer days when it is raining, I like to wear regular running shorts and a long sleeve t-shirt. I have no solution for wet shoes or how to keep your feet warm yet as it becomes difficult to change your shoes and socks without impacting your running.

For muscles warmth is always an issue. The perfect temperature for running is mid to upper 60s  to low 70s. The winter times often do not even reach the low 50s. This means that your muscles will struggle to stay warm affecting flexibility and strength. To prevent or lessen this effect warming up, dynamically not statically, running for a short time 1-2 miles. This helps me, especially during my longer training. During the first snow in the winter, I was training for the half marathon, and I ran slow for the first two miles and then picked the pace up.

While difficult to run the winter is a time for training with the upcoming track season approaching fast. These tips can help you run through the winter and stay training.

Summing up the 2017 car year

Hi Everyone,

The year is almost officially over, and that means that the 2017 model year calendar has also come to a conclusion. So it is time to reroll the tape one last time on how things went this year for new cars.

Lets start off with the highlights, starting with the new Swedish flagship the Volvo S90 and V90. These two cars are simply put, two of the most elegant and luxurious cars Volvo has ever made. In fact, the V90 is actually only available through a special order and you have to obtain it by going to Sweden and shipping it yourself. Mercedes redesigned a lot of cars this year, the new C Class Coupe and Cabriolet, S Class Cabriolet and GLE Coupe. You cannot forget about the E-Class, which I recently have had the pleasure to drive. It had a very smooth ride and upscale amentities for your hard working business person. The new Honda CR-V got Motor Trend SUV of the year honors and the Mazda CX-9 rolled out with a deluxe interior. You also cannot forget the one and only Bentley Bentayga, which is now the most expensive and powerful production SUV. Although it starts at a whopping $229,000, there is an option with a clock with diamonds that will set you back $300,000 just for the clock. Thats a lot of money.

Now for the not so great cars. Starting off is the new Mitsubishi Mirage G4, oh boy this is by far one of the worst new cars on the market. With an unforgiving and a very cheap interior it is a huge dissapointment. Whats worse is that even though its a class below the subcompact class, its unbelievably expensive at $17,000. The Lincoln Continential, while it is not an awful car, was noted to copy the living daylight out of Bentley for its Continential Flying Spur. So there has been some controversy over that.

This year was not horrible by any means, in fact this year is probably one of the best years so far in cars. Stay tuned for more everyone and have a spectacular Holiday!

 

Local Food Destinations

Hey everyone!

I hope you all are enjoying your break so far. It is nice to finally have some days off! Also, no school means more free time to make food or to go get food. I know that I get bored just hanging out at home all the time so making cookies, cake, banana bread, or brownies is always a good way to fill time.

One year during Christmas break I made no-bake cake pops with my cousin and they did not turn out how we imagined. I do not recommend making no-bake cake pops; they are way too dense and you will not want to eat very many of them.

Besides making food at home, going out with friends to get food at a restaurant is always a go-to hangout idea. I can never think of anything to do so I usually settle for going out. When I finally think that the hard decisions are over, they are not. Because then we have to choose where we actually want to go out to. One of my friends and I favorite places is Hello Robin in Seattle. It is kind of far but the cookies and ice cream do not disappoint (especially not the birthday cake cookies).

But because I know that sometimes it is hard to think of a place to go I am going to give everyone a few ideas so that when they cannot think of somewhere to eat with their friends they can have a list of places to choose from.

  • Hello Robin
  • Red Robin
  • Five Guys
  • Chipotle
  • Mod
  • Jimmy Johns
  • Dicks

 

University of Southern California

Hey guys,

The admissions office here and this time I will NOT be bringing you an Ivy League. Rather, I will be sharing information regarding University of Southern California, or USC. Located in Los Angeles and founded in 1880 USC is the oldest private research university in California. USC has leveraged its location in Los Angeles to establish relationships with research and cultural institutions throughout Asia and the Pacific Rim. USC even contributes around 8 billion dollars annually to the economy of the LA metropolitian area and California. USC has around 42,000 students with 18,750 undergraduates and 23,750 postgraduates in many different programs such as business, law, engineering, social work, and medicine. One program that is extremely competitive at USC is the School of Cinematic Arts, because of the LA location students are constantly seeking acting jobs after graduation so this provides them with an excellent opportunity. USC is often ranked in the top 25 universities academically in the United States and the location of LA provides students with many opportunities for potential internships. USC also ranks in the top 3 external contributions and alumni giving rate, so being a USC alum is a tight nit community.

USC athletics participate in the PAC 12 Division 1 conference. USC has a large tradition of championships, in total they have won 127 championships. The football team is constantly one of the top ranked teams in the country with 7 players winning the heisman trophy for the best player in college football and plays in the memorial coliseum which was once a home for the Olympics.

See you next week!

Family, Festivities, and Frustrations

Sup, my magical Fake Phillies! (Have I used magical before? Oh, well.) Hope your guys’s week has been good! The holidays are here, so I’m in a very festive mood this week and I might actually get through it in one piece! Anyway, for this week, I want to talk about family, as I know a lot of people tend to spend the holidays with their families.

Family is a word that has very different definitions for different people. For some, it is those who are related to them by blood. For others, those they care about the most, regardless of being blood-related or not, are their family. No matter what one’s definition of family is, however, we can all agree that they are one of the things we cherish the most.

And, as the holidays approach and we begin to meet up with all our relatives, it can sometimes be a very trying task to deal with all of them. Spending so much time with the same people, especially when you’re related, is no easy task. So here’s two tips for certain situations you face during the holidays, and hopefully this will help you pull through!

  1. When you get left in charge to watch your younger siblings/cousins: This is always something that happens at big family gatherings, and it always manages to take you by surprise. But no worries! Despite what type of child you are dealing with, whether it be the loud child, the shy child, or one that cries constantly, all you have to do is figure out how you can involve them in something so that they leave you alone. For example, getting them all riled up about playing a certain game or doing a certain activity peaks their interest, and if you treat it like a very special thing, most likely, the kids will be totally enraptured with what you’re saying and will want to participate, regardless of their personality.
  2. When you have to deal with that one relative that keep insulting you but you have to be polite about it: Usually, relatives that tend to do this are super passive-aggressive, and comment on everything, whether it be your hair, your weight, your job, your relationship status, etc. And what can you do? It’s not like you can say anything rude, as these people tend to be your elders, and you’re obligated to respect them. What I find most useful in these situations is to honestly reply with your own passive-aggressive comments. (But make sure they’re a bit more passive than aggressive, otherwise you will be in quite a bit of trouble.) For example, if they tell you that you gained some weight, you reply, “Oh yeah. I’ve been so busy studying to get into a good college, you know, like how you were telling me to do ALL of last year’s family dinner? I just haven’t gotten anytime to go to the gym.” And there you go.

So, that’s all for this week! I will probably include some more tips in the next blog post I’ll post, even though it’ll be in January, since this was getting a bit long. I hope this post helped you somehow and that you guys have a great weekend! See you guys next year! 😉

Until next time, Fake Phillies. This is Wannabe Philosopher, signing off. *finger guns*

20 Quirky Facts About the Disneyland Resort

It’s Fastpass Master here! One of the main reason I absolutely love Disneyland is because of all of the quirky little facts that really make it the Happiest Place on Earth. I used to watch video after video on some of the best Disneyland facts. So here are some of my favorite facts about Disneyland and California Adventure! 
1. In Disneyland’s New Orleans’ Square, there is an exclusive club called Club 33. Located directly above Cafe Orleans and The French Market, Club 33 is extremely hard to gain access to as members pay a steep price and typically have waited on a long waiting list. Club 33 is also the only place in the Disneyland park where you can buy alcohol.  
2. The gold trimmings that accent It’s a Small World is made out of real 22 karat gold. 
3. The Matterhorn actually has a basketball court located inside of it, even though it is very small. Anaheim regulations would not allow the Imagnieers to build something so tall without following certain regulations. Therefore the Matterhorn had to be considered a sports facility to pass these regulations. Employees go there during breaks to shoot hoops.  
4. The World of Color show uses 1200 fountains.  
5. The skeletons in the Pirates of the Caribbean ride used to be all real. Yet one real skeleton head still remains and is located above the bed in the treasure room.  
6. Tower of Terror in Disney’s California Adventure is the tallest ride at the Disneyland Resort at 183 feet. 
7. Over 2.8 million churros have been sold at Disneyland as of 2012.  
8. The props in the Indiana Jones ride queue are actual props from the Indiana Jones movie.  
9. The Enchanted Tiki Room was at first envisioned to be a restaurant. That is why it is one of the only attractions in both parks that has its own bathrooms.  
10. Walt’s private apartment is location directly above the Fire Station on Main Street. A lighted lamp is always lit in the window as a token to Walt.  
11. Radiator Springs Racers is the most expensive ride built in both parks at a crazy $200 million.  
12. On Buena Vista Street in California Adventure, there are several personal mailboxes that have the names of former cast members of Disneyland. There are also the names of former Imagnieers lining the windows on Main Street.  
13. Trash cans are strategically placed in the parks so that guests are never more than 30 steps away from one.  
14. Tower of Terror is the fastest high-speed elevator in the world. You fall fast than the speed of gravity; cables pull the elevator down to increase the distance between you and your seat.  
15. There are many “hidden mickeys” located throughout the Disneyland Resort. I’ll probably dedicate a whole blog post to these mickey shaped easter eggs because there are so many!  
16. Disneyland purposefully does not sell chewing gum or peanuts to try to keep the park as clean as possible. You can also often spot cast members drawing Disney characters with their mops!  
17. If you go to City Hall on Main Street, you can receive a number on special pins, including ones that celebrate your first visit or your birthday. You can also get a special birthday call from a special Disney character if you tell them it is your birthday!  
18. Each popcorn cart in the parks has a different character turner that is special to the cart’s location.  
19. The Morse code that you can hear at the train station in New Orleans Square is actually the first two lines of Walt’s speech at the opening day of the park.  
20. The drawbridge of the Sleeping Beauty Castle is actually functional. 
That’s all I have for now! I might write another post with more facts later as there are endless secrets about the parks.
And remember, “To all those who come to this happy place: Welcome.” 
~Fastpass Master  

LAFC Update

Hey guys,

LAFC has made some more roster moves. They’ve acquired midfielder Calum Mallace via the MLS Re-entry draft and signed free-agent left back Jordan Harvey. Interestingly, both players acquired by LAFC have ties back to the Sounders. The former is described as possessing a very similar skill set to that of Brad Evans. Mallace, 27, is currently listed as being worth 300 hundred thousand euros on transfermarkt.com. The latter has enjoyed a lengthy MLS career having played for the Seattle Sounders, Colorado Rapids, Philadelphia Union, and most recently the Vancouver Whitecaps. He is currently listed as being worth 600 hundred thousand euros on transfermarkt.com. In addition to these roster moves LAFC has also been linked to a move for the disgruntled Mexican defender Oswaldo Alanis. Alanis, 28, refused a contract extension from his club Chivas and they subsequently demoted him to their third division side. He was forced to stay back in Guadalajara as the rest of the Chivas squad flew to Cancun on Monday for the start of preseason training ahead of the 2018 Clausura. Alanis, who played a significant role for Mexico at last summer’s Confederations Cup, has said the situation “is not easy” but has been turning up to train with Chivas’ third division side and has been gaining support from his international teammates and the players’ association. Alanis is currently listed as being worth 2.3 million euros on transfermarkt.com. If he were to be signed he would likely join Carlos Vela and Diego Rossi as a designated player. Even if it’s not LAFC it’s looking very likely that Alanis will be playing for a different club come January.

Image result for oswaldo alanis

TAX REDUCTION

Today, Donald Trump signed the most consequential tax legislation in the past three decades, marking a great legislative victory for his presidency. Under the new tax law, individual rates will be lowered, standard deduction will almost double and corporation rates will drop significantly. At this point, you might be thinking that this must be one of Trump’s attempts to help the wealthy at the expense of the poor and the middle class. I do not believe so. In fact, my family have already benefited from this tax cut! As one of the hundreds of thousands of AT&T employees, my step-father will be receiving a bonus of a thousand dollars at the end of this year! In fact, all non-high-level managers working for AT&T will be receiving a check totaling to few hundred million dollars given away with the passage of this bill!

Out-sourcing. You probably have heard this term before. Companies have been out-sourcing many of their job positions overseas to places with lower wages and taxes. When the costs (including taxes) in the States are too high companies will just offer their jobs to non-American workers overseas. We are living in the 21st century where the markets are globalized. Even for Companies like AT&T where almost all over their customers and services are provided in the US., they can (and do) hire people from Czech Republic to do tasks like data analysis. With this in mind, a corporate tax reduction isn’t probably the as impactful to corporations as some might think.

So, are the tax reductions aimed to benefit the rich at the expense of others? Well, I don’t know for certain. All I will say is that I will be looking forward to how my family will be spending that one grand.

Absolutely Revolting, I am DISGUSTED, I Can’t Believe I Had to See that With My Own TWO EYES

It’s been a gross year to be a living breathing human being.

I am disgusted, you are the disdain that currently resides in my eyes. We are a team now, and it’s time to give out some terrible, no-good, absolutely horrible, advice.

“The holidays are coming up and my parents keep on telling me to get  a girlfriend/job/etc. How do I handle winter break?”

-Anonymous

Easy Path: just don’t talk to your family. No one will be nagging you if you literally can’t hear them. Invest in earplugs, blindfolds, sensory deprivation chambers, learn how to sleep with your eyes open. The best way to avoid confrontation is avoiding someone altogether (that’s a really bad piece of advice, confrontation is uncomfortable but it’s one of the many things you need to accept and learn how to take as life goes on).

Hard Path: be so amazing in everything that they will have literally nothing to criticise you on. Don’t have a boyfriend? Hire one. Ask one of your friends who you think has a lot of traits that you can brag about, slide him a 20 dollar bill, and enjoy the awkward small talk about how you’re “relationship” is going. No job? No problem! Have your friends build a fake business and hire you in. This is clearly the most obvious and easiest way to get your parents and relatives to leave you alone. Is there a cousin who’s the same age as you in your family but they just seem to be the best in everything? Fight them for dominance and take the crown as best niece or nephew. You will need to train for the fight, so go out there and practice a mean right hook!

Dangerous Path: if you don’t fear death or you don’t treasure your life, holiday clapbacks. By the time you’ve said two of these, all the other relatives should be too intimidated by you, or you’re dead. Either way, now you don’t have to worry about your holiday going sour due to disappointment and shame.

It’s winter break right now so enjoy the holiday season. Send your questions in here: https://goo.gl/forms/BJRMlvdiBgfFuqKq2 Thanks 🙂

“keep it 10% sneaky, and 90% freaky”

ab-so-lutely

 

Pummelled by Rams, Hawks’ playoff chances look dim

What a loss. Absolute annihilation, to put it mildly. Yes, I know what the score was—but don’t ask me to mention it. On Sunday, the Seahawks sucker punched the most energetic fan base in sports. No one knew we could play so atrociously. Seattle got outplayed in virtually every facet of football.

But hawks bashing aside, let’s take a moment to quiver about how scary the Rams look. Make no mistake of it. To be the bully, you have to beat the bully. The Los Angeles Rams have become the bully of the west. Their fans have every reason to feel excited heading into the playoffs.

Sure, I’m disappointed. Just several months ago I was writing about how promising the Seahawks looked this season. In my eyes, I could already see our beloved players and coaches hoisting the Lombardi trophy. I was optimistic. And now hindsight reveals how blind my optimism truly was. But strangely enough, I would do it all over again. I would express, in my words, the same outlandishly unwavering confidence that makes me so excited to wake up every Sunday morning. I haven’t doubted the Seahawks for one nanosecond, and I never will. Not even if the rest of the world thinks I’ve lost my sanity. Writing these blogs, it is simply my way of communicating my hope in my favorite team. That’s all there is to it. And it’s enough to keep my writing, even if they don’t make the playoffs this season. But they better make it next year.

DIY Eco-Friendly Gifts!

Hey Guys!

Winter break is finally here! Because I’m running out of time to buy my family and friends their holiday gifts, I thought it would be a good idea to share some DIY and last minute gift eco-friendly gifts! Most of the ideas I have listed below were found on Pintrest so you should definitely check out some more gift ideas on their site!

Homemade Bath Bombs

Making your own homemade bath bombs might seem difficult, but it is surprisingly simple. With just a few ingredients such as baking soda and essential oil, these bath bombs are all natural and eco-friendly because they do not contain any synthetic chemicals or dyes.

DIY Phone Case

Homemade phone cases are unique and customizable gift options. With just leftover fabric and a sewing kit, you can make an array of different phone cases. Instead of using conventional plastic cases, homemade cases can be made out of old leather jackets or other recycled materials keeping tons of plastic out of our landfills.

Easy Snow Globes

Snow globes are a festive decoration that people of all ages enjoy. By making your own out of recycled jars, water, glitter, and old holiday decorations, you easily can make your own snow globes. Unlike their store-bought counterparts, these snow globes are made out of recycled materials instead of the usual plastic or glass that clogs up our landfills.

Those are all of my DIY eco-friendly gift tips for now! I hope you all enjoy your winter break!

2 Weeks until the playoffs!

This is the playoff picture heading into week 16!

NFC:

  1. Eagles 12-2 (clinched NFC East+first round bye)
  2. Vikings 11-3 (clinched NFC North)
  3. Rams 10-4 (very likely to keep spot)
  4. Saints 10-4 (very likely to have playoff berth, could be division or wildcard)
  5. Panthers 10-4 (very likely to have playoff berth, could be division or wildcard)
  6. Falcons 9-5 (likely to have playoff berth, also most likely team to lose its spot)     In the hunt-
  7. Lions 8-6 (need to win out and have Falcons lose last two games)
  8.  Seahawks 8-6 (need to win out and have Falcons lose one game)
  9. Cowboys 8-6 (need to win out and have Falcons lose last two games

-The NFC is still tightly contested with two teams already clinched and four spots up for grabs. The Falcons do have two very tough opponents in the final two weeks of the season (Saints & Panthers) which if they are to lose both of them, the Lions, Seahawks or even the Cowboys could claim that spot. The game between the Seahawks and Cowboys this week will determine who is most likely to get that spot if the Lions are to lose one of their final two games.

AFC:

  1. Patriots 11-3 (clinched AFC East, high chance of homefield adv.+bye)
  2. Steelers 11-3 (clinched AFC North, high chance of bye, low chance of hf adv.)
  3. Jaguars 10-4 (clinched AFC South, low chance of bye or adv.)
  4. Chiefs 8-6 (likely chance of clinching, need a win and Charger loss to clinch)
  5. Titans 8-6 (likely chance of clinching wildcard, need Charger loss to clinch)
  6. Bills 8-6 (likely chance of clinching wildcard, need Charger loss to clinch)

-The AFC is more closed up because there are only three spots open at the moment. The Chargers are the single factor in the AFC, if they lose, the playoff race closes up because they are out, and the other teams are all in. Seeing the Jaguars in the playoffs will be crazy.

Check here after winter break for more updates!

Image result for jacksonville jaguars

Must needed features for the winter season

Hey everyone!

Its starting to get very cold outside and its time to get prepared for the snow. It is time to think about the must have features for this incoming winter.

Four wheel drive or all wheel drive is a must have feature. Most crossovers will come with all wheel drive while four wheel drive comes on truck based SUV’s. All wheel drive is a system that primarily runs just on front wheel drive until wheel slippage happens, then the back tires will supply traction. This is to save fuel economy. Four wheel drive is a much different system. There are two different four wheel drive systems, there is part time and then there is full time. Part time is where the car will be rear wheel drive and then the driver can select the drive train to the desired position. Full time is where the car will always stay in four wheel drive. Some four wheel drive cars have a transfer case, where a driver can select high speed or low speed depending on off road conditions.

One of the most important features to have is heated seats. Most cars that are fully loaded or have seats in vinyl or leather have this feature. It makes a huge difference because on those cold days, the heater may not kick in as quick and therefore you will be stone cold. Instead, you do not have to worry and you can just flick a switch and then the heat will come out.

These two features are probably the most important to have on a vehicle, they are also very easily attainable because you can always option in leather from an aftermarket shop as well. For now, get your fuzzy blankets on and stay warm Issaquah!

Image result for heated seats

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

It’s Fastpass Master here! It’s a big day for avid Star Wars fans; Star Wars the Last Jedi just came out! With the Star Wars hype in full swing, I wanted to talk about the upcoming Star Wars land that is coming to Disneyland in 2019. This 14 acre expansion is expected to cost $1 billion and will be the largest expansion in Disneyland history for a single land. Several attractions were closed in Frontierland in order to make way for the new land, including the petting zoo and Big Thunder Ranch Barbecue. Although fans we sad to see these places go, Disney lovers are thrilled to have the addition of a Star Wars land. The new land will be called “Galaxy’s Edge” and will consists of two rides including the one that will simulate piloting the Millenium Falcon. There have also been numerous renderings of what the land is expected to look like. The land is said to be on the “never-before- seen planet of Batuu; a remote trading port on the outskirts of the galaxy. A similar land will also be opening in Disney World in Disney’s Hollywood studios, however that will be opening sometime after the land opens in Anaheim.

Some people are also worried about how the opening of Galaxy’s Edge will impact the current Star Wars takeover of Tomorrowland. In Tomorrowland, guests can visit their favorite Star Wars characters Star Wars Launch Bay and can even become jedis themselves at Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple. Tomorrowland also sells a host of Star Wars themed merchandise that cannot be found anywhere else. Space Mountain had also experience the Star Wars takeover as the ride resembled a spaceship takeoff similar to one in the movies. The popular Star Tours ride, that already was Star Wars oriented, received a special guest recently; Mark Hamill himself rode along with guests during the ride to excite guests over the recent Star Wars movie.  Star Tours is even offering a ride possibility of visiting Batuu during your galactic adventure.

Even though not much is known about Galaxy’s Edge and the status of Tomorrowland, I for one am extremely excited for what is to come! I’m also very excited because I’ll be seeing The Last Jedi tomorrow!  

And remember, “To all those who come to this happy place: Welcome.”

~Fastpass Master