Why hello there! I'm Rachel. Welcome to my own little corner of the interwebs where I chronicle my daily adventures. My blog began under the name explorology as a study in exploring my career interests and the city around me at my alma mater UC Davis. Still embodying that same Spirit of Adventure - I am now exploring where I was born and raised - the San Francisco Bay Area. Expect all things food, film and fun sprinkled with bits of travel, artwork and post-grad life advice.
For the past 6 months my life has been consumed in planning this music video. It is our love letter to Davis showcasing all the unique parts of campus. You can spot me at 28 seconds and a couple other places. Share with friends and family!
For my friends who do not know, WonderCon is a mini version of Comic-Con but even cooler because it’s in SF. It’s a gathering of geekery including comic book, video gaming, anime, television and film. The last time I went was three years ago when I still had my magenta hair. That was an epic day – asked Andrew Stanton a question about WALL*E, sat front row to see John Cho talk about Harold and Kumar 2, and infamously meeting Steve Carell and Anne Hathaway:
Ask me when you see me for the juicy details (note the unhappy security guard behind me & Annie). This year was the 25th anniversary, so what better time to try and top my first WonderCon experience?
Lita, Neil, Peter and I with a Storm Trooper & R2D2.
After receiving our badges we headed to the DC Universe panel to guarantee a close seat for the Super panel. They started off playing the Green Lantern trailer which somehow had more footage than was shown on Friday’s GL panel with Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively.
I do not follow any comic books but even if I did I would say the discussion was lack luster. Every time the moderator asked a question all the artists were very vague and just encouraged everyone to buy the next issue for the answer. Understandably, they did not want to give away any key plot points.
The most entertaining part of the panel was the Q&A with the audience. The best questions were asked by a couple kids under 10 and the moderator gave each of them the new Green Lantern ring.
Photo Credit: Jody Jill, Examiner
Next up was the panel for Super with director James Gunn and star Rainn Wilson (Dwight Schrute on The Office).
At the beginning, Rainn was like “Alright guys, let’s get the photo ops out of the way – everyone come to the front.” Since they had no footage to show or no moderator the talk was very intimate and mostly a Q&A session. Topics included: meeting real life super hero Pheonix Jones, how little improv there was because the script was so well written (unlike My Super Ex Girlfriend), how Rainn & Ellen Page are butt buddies (they just like to booty bump) and the state of the movie industry. I wish I could have recorded the whole talk – hilarious. There was one girl who recorded alot of it but sadly it is not on YouTube yet.
After the panel, we walked across the street to place with tapas Peter recommended.
I wouldn’t really recommend this place to anyone because of it’s small portions and high price tag. Four mediocre meatballs for $9? Really? Loved the paella though. The tapas are no comparison to Cha Cha Cha’s. It was a nice and convenient place to eat though since it was just across the street from Moscone.
Fun to see other WonderCon attendees in the restaurant.
I was so stoked I Heart Guts had set up a booth. I learned about them after my friend Sharon received their journal as a going away to med school gift.
I’ve been wanting to get something from them for a while but didn’t want to pay shipping. I purchased the testical and ovary plushies and named them Elvis & Olivia respectively. My bf and I thought it’d be funny if we each kept one. Had to get the Heart of Gold pin, too!
My family and I are really big Seinfeld fans. My cousin even played the Chinese delivery man in the episode Elaine gets blacklisted for ordering outside their limit. So I was thrilled to meet Larry Thomas who played the Soup Nazi.
He was super nice. He said he got to meet the real Soup Nazi back in 2002 and that he was really nice to him (despite any animosity he has towards Jerry) and that his seafood bisque was delicious. I ended up getting a signed soup ladle for my dad.
I’ve been wanting to go to Mikuni’s ever since my roomie Melanie told me they have $5 rolls on their happy hour menu. Happy hour is 4:30-6:00PM during weekdays.
Last Thursday was a beautiful, sundress weather day. My friends and I made it just in time for happy hour. It was the last day to buy a Rescue Roll to go towards the American Red Cross for Japan disaster relief and so a perfect day to go.
Spicy Scallop Hand Roll – $3. Amazing! There were chunks of scallops all the way to the bottom.
Spicy Tuna Roll $5
Fair Oaks & No. 8 Rolls. Unagi and shrimp tempura goodness. Both $5
Rescue Roll $5
Lauren, Todd & I ready to get our grub on – AggieTV fo lyfe. Lovely place to eat quality sushi on a budget. I’ll never go to Oshio’s for a $5 roll again. We were so full at the end we sadly had to skip dessert. What is your favorite thing to order at Mikuni’s?
Melanie and I met up to play badminton at the ARC. I don’t think I’ve played since high school – so fun! It was a pretty good work out when we were running from sides of the court. It was also relaxing when we got into the swing of rallying back and forth.
We’re planning on meeting up twice a week to get our work out on. What’s your favorite thing to do at the ARC? Reminder: I’m scouting new bloggers! Apply here: http://bit.ly/ucdblog
Last night, I attented the book launch party for Life After College by the amazing Jenny Blake. I stumbled upon her blog back in December and it was love at first scroll. Googler, life coach, and lover of yoga & cupcakes! I was overwhelmed with inspiration from all her sage advice. At the time, a fellow life coach Tia Sparkles had interviewed Jenny and was conducting a LAC book giveaway. A name was chosen at random out of all the commenters and I won! As fate would have it, I received my advanced copy a couple weeks ago during my last finals week ever. I was estatic when I found out Jenny was having a book signing while I was in the bay area. I could not miss an opportunity to meet the person who has been virtually ushering me into this new chapter of my life.
She shared the 10 life lessons she learned while creating the book including apreciating the beauty in imperfection, being open to serendipity, and enjoying the stops along the way in addition to the final destination. Her humor and insight enables her to be such an engaging speaker with colorful personal anecdotes. The moment she decided she was serious about writing a book was the combination of having “The Jealousies” and conceiving the format of the book. One piece of advice that stuck out was about the importance of sprints and recovery. You don’t have to be go, go, go all the time like in a marathon but can have spurts of productivity and then rest.
Jenny comparing the galley and final version of her book cover.
Meeting IRL! I bought a book because I accidentally left my advanced copy on the staircase at home. I hope it helps her make the best seller’s list & I will probably pay it forward by having my own book giveaway at the UC Davis Student Affairs blog. Plus, by purchasing I got a cool gift bag complete with the most delicious sea salt caramels!
What I love about the book is how each section includes her personal tips, advice from college graduates, coaching exercises, Twitter tips, inspirational quotes AND recommended reading. I’ve read my fair share of personal development books but this one propels you into action in no time. All you do is just flip to which area of life you want to focus on: work and money, family and friends or fun and relaxation. It reminds me of one of my favorite blogs turned book: Gretchen Rubin‘s The Happiness Project. Both provide tangile realistic actions to take to reach your goals. I feel really lucky and grateful to have a resource like this that I will no doubt return to it again and again.
Since the book launch was at Books Inc. in Mountain View near Jenny’s hometown, all her friends and family were in attendance. It was wonderful to meet her core support system and hear stories of how Jenny was like growing up. In middle school, she would assign her friends writing exercises – love it! After the signing, we mosied on over to Zen Lounge for food, drinks and of course cupcakes!
I baked a batch of devil’s food and funfetti with M&M’s to match her book. I was thrilled she included Best of Bootie 2010 on her playlist. I actually chose to attend the book launch party instead of going to Bootie with my friends so it was fun to learn she loves their mashups as much as I do.
Jenny and her Library of Congress number framed by one of her childhood friends.
Me with Jenny and Gopi Kallayil – my role models! It was such a pleasure bumping into Gopi and his god daughter again. I met him last month at TEDxBerkeley where he spoke on Connecting the Internet to the Inner-net, advice on how to balance life with technology.
Gopi and me at TEDxBerkeley. After I left the conference, I realized that I had seen Gopi before -interviewing Jenny for his Change Makers show:
All in all, what a serendipitous,interconnected and fun night. Jenny’s book is selling for under $10 right now on Amazon & would make a great gift for yourself or any graduate you know.