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Thursday, August 30, 2007

Disclaimer: I would like to start off this post by writing that I am in no way an advocate of date rape...unless we're talking about the Sublime song.

I get a lot of junk email from the University of California, at Irvine. Maybe junk is not the correct term. Let's just say I get a lot of email from the University, that I really do not need to read, such as: firings of department heads I have never heard of, receptions ocurring at 10 AM (that nobody with a real job could possibly attend), and updates on ongoing legal problems at the Med Center.

Rarely, (we are talking about Irvine) these emails include warnings about recent crimes reported on campus. Even in Irvine, I suppose it would be good to know that you should use caution when walking to your car at night. However, I am nearly 100% confident that I will never, ever meet anyone at a party, invite him (or I guess preferably, her) back to my place of residence, thereby placing myself at risk for sexual assault. I'm just saying.

On August 25, 2007, at about 3 AM, a sexual assault was reported to
have occurred in an apartment in Vista Del Campo Building 624. The 21
year old suspect and the victim, both UCI students, had met earlier at
a party hosted by a mutual friend.

UC Irvine Police Officers responded to the area of the assault after
being called by the victim. The victim was interviewed and treated at
a local hospital. A search of the Vista Del Campo housing complex was
successful, resulting in the arrest of the suspect. The suspect was
transported to the UC Irvine Police Station for investigation and
booking procedures. He was later transported to Orange County Main
Jail and held on three felony sexual assault charges.

The suspect was released from Orange County Jail over the weekend
after posting bail. The incident is being reviewed by the Orange
County District Attorney's Office and locally by the UC Irvine Dean of
Students' Office. The sexual assault incident is an individual
event, and there is no known direct or additional threat to the UC
Irvine community.

This timely warning notice is being distributed to inform the UCI
community about a serious incident on campus and increase public
awareness.

Paul Henisey
Chief of Police

Friday, August 24, 2007

In addition to being a top pharmacist, I am also the top Michael Lasko...so says Google, at least. Do you have any idea how many times I have had to type "Michael Lasko" on this page to make this happen? Look's like I'm 6th for Michael B. Lasko. We'll keep working on that.
I'm sure you all know that I am one of America's Top Pharmacists. Evidently, I have much in common with the Drugnazi. I'm thinking it might be a bad idea to continue reading the Drugnazi's blog at work...

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

35 is the new 25.

Maybe it's my new sunglasses. (Have any of you noticed that my equipment get's a little better with each marathon)?

Or maybe it's the new disc brake I put on the tandem...

Either way, I can get the bike up to 35 MPH without feeling it at all (downhill, of course...I still feel 35 on flats).

Newport's best sunset, and Dine Out USA night #1.

For the best view of the setting sun in Newport Beach (and a mighty good martini), try the Back Bay Cafe. Less touristy than I would have imagined, and exactly as I remember from Blind Date.

Dine Out USA night #1 was at Sage Restaurant. Evidently my reservation was at Sage on the Coast. How embarrasing for me.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Steve Holt!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Actually, I met this Steve Holt, evidently the above mentioned Steve Holt was named after this one. Steve Holt came by to audit my sailing class this evening. I only yelled: "Steve Holt!!!!!!!" once.

Marathon Tourism




Here's me near the end of the San Francisco Marathon. I look rather happy...probably because I have no more hills to run up. I had no idea there were so many hills in the City.


I will spare you the boring details of how difficult it was to get to San Francisco. The morale of the story is: If you are ever offered a trip to anywhere if you will take a later flight to San Francisco, take the trip to anywhere (and the later flight).

Things to do in San Francisco after running a marathon:
1) Look at the cable cars outside your hotel room.



2) Kill the pain with a martini served in a wooden cask.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Expedia.scam

I usually try to make my complaint letters funny, but I was rather angry about this one:

To whom it may concern: I am writing to express my deep dissatisfaction with my recent travel purchase using Expedia.com. I have used Expedia for many purchases over the last several years, and have always been very happy with your service.

Yesterday, I purchased two round trip tickets from LAX to Rome (itinerary number 120620811764). I received confirmation that my tickets had been booked (Alitalia confirmation code: JPUZJA), as well as a follow up email confirmation. Nine hours later, I received an email stating that: "Due to circumstances beyond our control, we are unable to process your request for an airline ticket." When I called your company to see what the problem was, I was told that the price had gone up, and the two tickets that I had booked for $972.60(business class) would now be $2371.40 (economy class). When I agreed to pay the $972.60 we entered into a contract...I understood that I could not make any changes to the contract (ie: canceling my flight) without paying a penalty; I assumed that your company understood it had agreed to the same thing. The Expedia promise(http://www.expedia.com/daily/highlights/Expedia-Promise/default.asp) seems to indicate that your company understands this very well. I thought I was shopping, booking, and clicking with confidence. I would like to draw your attention to this line from your website: "We'll take responsibility, at no additional cost to you, if we make a mistake booking your travel." I have already booked the rest of my trip around this airfare purchase. I am certain that there is still plenty of room on the planes we had booked. I would greatly appreciate your booking these tickets at the originally agreed (and booked price).

Excerpt from the (long, boring) response from Bonnie Sharkey (assistant to Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO and President of Expedia, Inc):

This itinerary you intended on reserving was not allowed to be ticketed due to several problems in the booking path on your purchase. Reviews of the recorded path taken during purchase and creation of the itinerary reflect numerous errors occurring regarding both flight availability and pricing. The created flight record and itinerary were later rejected by our quality control teams and cancelled due to the noted error responses from the air carriers and our website. Some of the response you witnessed on your booking included: Select to check price, then showed a price of $4786.20
One of your flights is no longer available at this price
Please go back and select a different trip or try building your own trip flight by flight. You may also want to try changing your travel dates or times.
We're Sorry; We Had a Problem with Your Selected Flights
We're currently having difficulty confirming the price for your itinerary. We apologize for any inconvenience. Please try again later. If you need immediate assistance, please call us at 1-800-EXPEDIA (1-800-397-3342) or 1-404-728-8787.

A reply from the office of the CEO/President is rather impressive. Ms. Sharkey, I saw none of these error messages when booking these tickets. Is this a form letter you sent me?

On the bright side, Expedia's agent for service of process is in Irvine. I will get you yet, Expedia.