Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Today's Gripe: Flying the "we lost your luggage and it isn't our fault" skies

My contribution to this blog may be less frequent than my wife, but I hope that I can add a nugget of wisdom (or provide a chuckle) from time to time. Among my contributions, I hope to add some recurring posts -- a series of series if you will -- each loosely based on a singular topic.

The first series I will introduce today is "Today's Gripe." Now, I know nobody likes to hear griping so I will spare each and every trivial or petty gripe that I can. But from time to time, a given gripe simply must be published. If for no other reason than to shame the gripee or to give the griper some comfort that others share in the griper's outrage. Of course, if you know Christina and me, a recurring post about complaining doesn't seem totally out of character. So without further delay, let the griping commence!

As the title implies, my first gripe deals with air travel. For the third time in my life, I have arrived at a destination sans luggage. And while it did arrive while I slept, I still feel the need to gripe.

There is no worse feeling than seeing the bag labeled "last bag" as it passes you standing at the baggage claim carousel. Frustrated and tired, it's off to the lost luggage counter.

Me: "My luggage never came."

Rep: . . . says nothing -- takes my sticker and starts typing . . .

Rep: "Yes, Mr. W, we have your bag, sorry it never made it out of Reagan/ it wound up in Rochester / it didn't make the connecting flight. Here is your tracking number, we'll deliver it to you as soon as possible."

Me: "Thanks for losing my bag again. Have a nice day."

Rep: "Next in line."

It comes the next day (or next week) with a mileage certificate good for 1000 World Perks miles and a $25.00 coupon for travel booked in the next calendar year. Thanks.

Aside from the inconvenience in losing one's luggage, my real gripe is that there is no policy that holds the airline to account. I mean, people travel with luggage and their luggage holds their clothes and toiletries. Why then is there no logical relationship between the airline's failure to deliver these things and the "compensation" for their failure to do so. Why doesn't the airline give me fifty bucks to buy underwear and shaving cream? Or a gift certificate at Wal-Mart. Or at the very least refund the extra fifteen bucks I forked over for the right to check a bag. Instead, they give me something that forces me to do future business with them if I am to receive any benefit at all.

And, good air traveler as I am, I will respond to this as the airlines want me to. I'll pack lighter, carry on, and avoid the possibility that they'll lose my stuff. But stop griping, I will NOT.

So as I wag my finger at you airline industry (a la Colbert), this time, I congratulate you too. After all, you are the honorable subject of my first Gripe of the day.

We've Been Married 8 Months?

Mike and I tied the knot on October 12, 2008 at Atlantica in Westhampton Beach, NY. The wedding was beautiful, the party was amazing and the marriage, thus far, has been wonderful. I can't believe that 8 months has already passed us by...how time flies!
Our wedding photographer, Punam Bean was amazing. Her work is fantastic. Check out her website here: http://www.punambeanweddings.com/

Pictures from our engagement session and wedding can be found here on Punam's blog: http://www.punambean.com/blog/?s=Christina+and+Mike&searchsubmit=Search

I highly recommend her to anyone planning a wedding!!

Videos of the Week

Long Island Wants to Secede

Too funny! I'm a Queens girl, and believe it or not I may have actually known people as dumb as this growing up. Check out the video and try not to piss your pants...

Monday, June 29, 2009

Poor Michael Jackson

The Michael Jackson documentary from years ago is being aired again tonight, and I just heard him say that he's only had two plastic surgeries throughout his lifetime...I think not. You be the judge...

Meet Bella!

Bella is our miniature dachshund, and is our pride and joy. We are obsessed with her. She is the cutest thing and is so sweet, and it doesn't hurt that she sometimes smells like Frito's or freshly baked bread.....

Oh the Bella Boo. We love you!

NYC Prep = Bad Parenting

I am a reality TV junkie. Project Runway, Real Housewives, The Hills, Top Chef, Biggest Loser, you name it, I've watched an episode or two, or more.

Bravo seems to have the juiciest reality shows with the wildest characters. Take Theresa from The Real Housewives of New Jersey for example, who flips a table over only after calling her friend a "prostitution whore!" Ahh you gotta love that Theresa. Being that I love Bravo reality series, I was excited to learn about a new show called NYC Prep. How can you go wrong with rich kids in high school living on the Upper East Side? It's like real life Gossip Girl!

Mike gives me a lot of slack for watching reality TV. He thinks all the shows are fake and most of all he thinks all of the people are shallow and stupid. Most of the time I am in complete disagreement and love being able to watch a gourmet meal being prepared, or a person turning their life around by losing 130 lbs, or better yet Heidi and Spencer proclaming their love at the altar for all the world to see. It's a guilty pleasure that I usually feel no guilt about. That was until now.

I got through about half of the first episode of NYC Prep and couldn't stomach anymore. These children, and they really are children at 16 and 17 years old, are so spoiled, so entitled, and so utterly clueless that it made me ill. What happened to the high school experiences that I remember? Cutting class to hang out at the park, drinking beer with friends, having house parties...

These teens are dining out at four star restuarants with friends, being served alcohol, and talking about having sex with multiple partners. Am I the only one who finds this appalling? There is this one kid named Sebastian, who you can meet here: http://www.hulu.com/watch/75779/nyc-prep-meet-sebastian, who is very "Cruel Intentions" who talks about girls like they are pieces of meat. He's 16! I'm sorry, but what the hell do you know about relationships, or women, or anything really? And how bad is your hair?!

I blame the parents. These parents are obviously too busy in their careers, or too pre-occupied with their fabulous lives that they forgot to to be parents. They failed to instill any manners, or ethics into their children. They have failed these kids. It's quite sad really. I feel bad for these children who have lost their innocence. I feel bad because they have been forced to grow up too quickly. I feel bad because they will most likely have children who they will ignore and the cycle will continue. I guess money doesn't always equal happiness.

So I won't be watching NYC Prep afterall. I'll just have to make do with Lauren firing Stephanie Pratt from People's Revolution, which was great btw, or good ole Theresa flipping a table, and I'm okay with that.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Our Inaugur-Blog Post

Wow. We finally did it. My husband Mike and I have been talking about starting a blog for over a year now, and here I sit on a Sunday night typing on the couch, and I have to say that I am excited about what lies ahead.

First things first. The title. What the hell is "Friday's with Cilantro?" Well my friend, it is in fact a rather witty phrase that my husband coined and that we now use quite often (and hope you will too someday). Let me explain...

Mike and I are foodies. We eat, we cook, we enjoy all food. On occasion we end up at a restuarant, usually newly opened, that describes itself as "fusion ____" or "new/neuvo ____." More often than not, we predict that the place will suck, but you never know, and we are always hopeful to find a new spot to enjoy. I think you can see where this is going. In the vast majority of cases, the food is very comparable to Friday's/Applebee's/Chili's/You name the chain, but the prices are ALWAYS higher -- apparently this is a function of the "fusion" menu or trendy interior accents. Our description of such places: Friday's with Cilantro. Cilantro, of course, for the single ingredient that differentiates their menu from Friday's. These places are awful, are taking over America and are the reason for the decline of capitalism in the world. Okay, maybe its not that bad, but still they are pathetic and we hate them. More about that later...

In our inaugural blog post, I want to touch upon some of the topics that will be discussed here. Mike and I have many thoughts, opinions, and feelings, about many things, all the time. We are also very outspoken so we thought, why not share our notions with the world? That being said, topics will include but are not limited to: lifestyle, fashion, food, restaurants, family, marriage, travel, career, and political views. We currently live in Washington DC, but are NYC ex-pats so there are bound to be a lot of DC/NYC themed posts as well.

So, here we are. I hope you enjoy Friday's with Cilantro and I hope you visit often. Enjoy!