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What are rules for?

Why do people don’t follow rules? what are rules for, if people don’t follow them.

So Today, when my wife, Vicky and I arrived at the Victory Height tennis court to play tennis, I met  two individuals playing soccer tennis on the Victory Height tennis court. (Soccer tennis is using a soccer ball and kicking the ball back and forth across the net and court). When my wife and I address the individual and asking them, if we can play tennis on the court, they told us they just go there. I then ask them if we can use the court because they can play soccer on the large grass field and we can only play tennis on the tennis court, they then told us they will be playing for another 30 minutes. Then a young 7 year old kid nearby pointed out the posted court rules which states that the “courts should only be used for tennis and other city approved activities”. I then address this to the individuals playing the soccer tennis and they argue that their activity was a city approved activity and would not leave the court. I complained and stated that “that can’t be right”, since it is stated that it is for tennis only and they don’t have any written statement from the city therefore it is not approved.

My problem is this, if I was in their shoes playing soccer on a tennis court when someone shows up playing tennis, I would yield the court. Instead they call me grumpy and saying that these are rules and not laws and that it can be bent or broken and they are not meant for them.

So my question is Am I wrong for following rules? What is the point of posting rules stating that the tennis court is only for tennis and people don’t follow them?

Is this just Seattle? or is it just me getting old and grumpy?

TIL: Wireless Telephone in 1962 Space Needle

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 Today I Learned (TIL) that special wireless telephones were built for the Space Needle’s rotating restaurant in the 1962.  Today, this may not seem to special, but back in 1962, the is truly futuristic.  OH and 1 HP is all that is required to turn the space needle restaurant!!!

Ref:   Space Needle: The Spirit of Seattle

Ref:  WUNC and Sceince Friday

Day at the Aquirium

A rainy afternoon in the Seattle aquarium.

Another Snow Day

The weather forecast said that today the weather suppose to warm up and snow will turned in to rain. Well… that did not happen. The snow continued. I did not mind at all. Get a chance to work from home and of course enjoying the snow a bit.

Around Seattle with Family

Oh it’s been so long since my last post. It seems that I am getting lazier and lazier as time moves on. It is not that I don’t take pictures, I do, it is that I feel like it takes so long to post everything up. Maybe I should just give in to the Facebook only or twitter only world. Sigh….
So anyways, my in-laws are in town visiting, so after a week of cloudy weather and rain in Seattle, we finally got some sun today. So I decided to show my parents in-law a bit of our beautiful Seattle.

They day started with Ballard Locks. Yes we did see a few salmon, but what was more amazing was that we saw a sea lion near the locks. I have seen a lot of sea lions in SF, but never in Seattle. I thought that was pretty cool. We then went to the light house in Discovery Park. The day and the view was amazing. At lunch we stop in at O’Asian for some dim sum.

After lunch we went up to Kerry Park on top of Queen Anne Hill. The view of the city was fantastic. Then we visited Gas Works Park, which was another beautiful view. Yep, because of the nice weather, we tried to hit all the major view points around Seattle.

Oh… one foot note, Auburn lost to Arkansas today. So sad…. But besides that, it was a beautiful and an amazing Saturday in Seattle.

Enjoy the pictures.

A Beautiful Friday

Today is a beginning of a car free weekend, after an extremely busy week at work, my weekend finally begin with a happy hour with my buddies Colin and Brian. The weekend began with heading to Blue Acre in downtown for Colin’s special happy hour. My good friend Colin left Sparling for another position. Oh how quickly time passes, I remember when Colin started with Sparling 3 years ago. So since after the HH I was planning to join my other friends in Alki, I decided to ride down with Colin and Brian and then take public transportation to Alki. After hunting around downtown trying to find the bus to pier 50, I was finally at the Seattle Water Taxi to Alki. It’s pretty cool, I’ve been in Seattle for 4 years and I have never taken the water taxi.

Beautiful Seattle!!


The Water Taxi


Seattle Instagram 😉

It is so nice, once I got to Alki, I just jump on the DART shuttle and it drop me right at the Alki beach where my friends are BBQing.


As you can see this is a beginning of a beautiful weekend!!!

Seattle Vs San Diego

So earlier today, I was talking to my friend Lonnie in SD. I told him how bad the weather was in Seattle so I decided to send him a picture to cheer him up.

This is what I sent.

This is what I got back.

I miss the sun… I miss the south… I miss Auburn.

One Beautiful Saturday and a Great Weekend

This weekend was great, we had the only sunny day in months and this Saturday for the first time in many years I washed my own car. I pulled out my old car washing gear from the Ephrata days and washed my car and Vicky’s car. It was also the first time that Vicky washed a car.

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Afterward, we went to pick up Vicky’s friends at the airport. They came from China and from Vancouver. We had a chance to enjoy some wonderful dim sum and then did the tourist things around Seattle. I actually saw a place that I haven’t been before. It’s the gum wall in Post Alley. Pretty disgusting but still pretty unique.

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Afterward we visited Queen Anne hill and then went to Fremont for a short walk about.
The Dinner was wonderful. I grilled some lemon shrimp and Vicky cooked some wonderful food.

Photo Apr 23, 7 34 00 PM.jpg

On Sunday, the weather was not as great, but we visited the Future in Flight Tour at the Boeing plant. It was pretty cool. It’s amazing to see the 747 still in production, it is the plane that brought me to the US. It is also the plane that carried the Space Shuttle (which is now retired), so sad.

But all in all it was a wonderful Weekend… and now it’s Monday… it is all wet and nasty again :(.

Snow day in Seattle

So a major snow storm hit Seattle this week, it is not as bad as the one in 2008, but still shut down most of the city. So today is actually pretty amazing. The sun is out it’s beautiful out, but below freezing the entire day. After working most of the morning in my office. I decided to take a break and walk around the neighborhood and take some pictures. The walk reminded me so much of my time in Ephrata, WA. The crusty frozen ground, the cool air, the patches of slippery ground. Gosh, I really miss Ephrata.

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Pictures from Gas Works Park

An afternoon after work, this is my first time to Gas works park. I wanted to share some of these pictures with everyone.

Macau Day 2

Today is Day 2 in Macau, the day started off with a very normal breakfast with my father’s PhD advisor at the local Starbucks.  Yeah, pretty funny huh… coming from Seattle, and I am in Macau having breakfast at Starbucks.  But one thing they have that they don’t have in Seattle.  Fresh Guava juice!!!

My morning sunrise from my hotel room.

The Macau Venetian!!!… just few weeks ago I was in the Las Vegas Venetian.. 😉

My Macau Starbuck breakfast, with fresh Starbuck guava juice!!!

After a full day of technical conference, we went to downtown Macau in the evening for a huge casino buffet. Afterward we went for some blackjack. The casino here in Macau is really interesting, first they can use 2 currency on the same table, HKD and Macau currency. The dealers were fast and sharp. Second, you can have side bets on the Blackjack table. I mean, you can watch a table and bet with someone else that is playing on the table. If he or she wins, then you win. Unfortunately, Today is not my day. I lost 🙁

There sure are alot of Pawn shops around the casino in downtown Macau.

The big casino buffet


The start of my big summer trip to China!!!

Today I started off my grand trip to Asia. 2010 has been an interesting year. Europe, New York, Las Vegas, and now Asia. My Asia trip starts with a conference in Macau. This is my first conference for a short paper of mine. The trip will start from Seattle with a brief stop in Japan then to Hong Kong. I will be in Hong Kong late tomorrow night. After that onward to Macau in the morning.

Weekend / Monthly Update with Min-Hsao Chen

So it has been a very long time since I wrote in my blog and since I am in the middle of my craziness at work on a Sunday, what better time to write a little bit about what have been going on so I won’t forget all the little things.

So Let’s start from now and go back to where we last left off…

Today.. I am working in the office today… overwhelmed with 2 major projects. Oh and I also receive my new glasses… which is incredibly fast.  I ordered them on line on 05/20/2010.  Which means I got them in 2 days!!!!! oh and it was only 15 dollars with lens and coatings and all!!! baby!!!

I may post a picture later if I have time.

Yesterday (05/22/2010), we spend an entire day looking for carpets and paint colors…. why? well… look below… 🙂

This past Friday (05/21/2010), I was suppose to be a home owner, however, the stupid lender decide not to fund in the last minute and then decided that they made a mistake and will be funding me.  So I will be closing on Monday!!! Oh … I guess I will be a home owner soon!!! yeah!!!

This past Friday was bike to work day, and I biked to work going my fastest getting to work for an 8AM meeting.  54minutes from my townhome to my office!!! just short of 14mile/hour average time.  I am getting stronger.  In the afternoon, I took on the challenge of 8th Ave NE going south bound.  Yes, it was a super step hill and on top of that it was pouring !!!!  I was soaked!!!

Wednesday, my folks arrived in Seattle.

Monday, I biked to work with my new bike seat… I felt the comfort and more power!!!

2 weeks ago… I was back in NYC for my second trip for my project.

about a month ago… oh I signed contract for a new house. 🙂

So did I miss anything?

3 years in Seattle!!!!

I was reminded that today is my 3 year anniversary with Sparling, my current company.   It is hard to believe that 3 years ago I moved from the little town called Ephrata to Seattle.  It was 3 years ago that I started my life in Seattle.  So many things have changed since that time and more changes are coming … stay tuned!!!

My Awful Experience with Delta Airlines!!!

So this past weekend, I travelled from New York City Airport (JFK) back to Seattle. On the way back I faced few of the most awful costumer services experiences ever and I even found few pieces of glass in my salad. On top of that Delta’s response to my complaint email was shockingly disappointing.

So let me tell you about my recent experiences.

1) Rude ticketing and gate agents in JFK.

When we arrived, at JFK 2.5 hours before take off, we were hoping to get a companion upgrade for me. Since my girlfriend is a Delta Airlines Platinum Status member and is entitled to a companion upgrade. Not allowing us the upgrade is one thing. But the rude attitude and not knowing their own company policy and in addition, constantly trying to charge me $250 dollars for put me on a standby for upgrade is just plan wrong. Especially, when in the end, when we were onboard the airplane there were two empty first class seats available. So as a result a long email letter was written to the customer service about the situation. After some back and forth verification, Delta’s customer service finally admitted to their mistakes and apologized. They also provided 15000 miles to our frequent flier account each. A simple upgrade or even better customer respect in the beginning would have prevented all of this drama. This was the good response.

2) Your onboard food safety is only worth 3700 sky miles!!!

So on the plane back home I found the following pieces of glass in my $8 dollar salad.

On the flight when I tell the flight attendant of the situation the response I got was simply… oh we will refund you but tell your complaints to our website.

So I wrote the following email to

Dear Sir or Madam,

My name is Min-Hsao Chen. I’ve been flying with Delta for over ten years, and my experience with Delta’s services was fairly good until last night.
During my flight from JFK to Seattle, I ordered a Southwestern Caesar Salad with Cajun Chicken for $8 for dinner. The salad was tasted kind of bad, but I was hungry. Half way through eating my salad, I ,all the suddenly, bite into something hard. When I spit the mystery item in my hand, it was two pieces of small broken glass. I immediately spit out the rest of the contents in my mouth into the salad container. I think there may have been other pieces in there. You can see a picture of the two pieces that I found in my mouth here.

I immediately notified the flight attendants and the response I’ve
receive was shocking and very disappointing and unsettling. When I notified the Delta flight attendant of what has happened and that I’ve found, she simply said that “oh.. don’t eat that salad anymore and we will refund your money”. Then about 15 minutes later another attendant came by and I told her again of what happened, and she simply stated that they do not prepared the food and I need to complain to the website. Finally about 20-25 minutes after I notified the attendants, they came by and collected my credit card and refund my 8 dollars.

It is not the 8 dollars that I am concerned about, but how the flight attendants reacted to the situation. The situation was disappointing and very unprofessional. The first impression I received from the flight attendants were that they don’t really care. Even now, I am still uncertain if I swallowed any glass or maybe potentially cut my throat or mouth. I am continuing to monitor my condition. The point is, the flight attends did not show any
care and concern and that was very disappointing with their very poor customer service. In addition, when I ask the flight attendant again, they simply shifted the blame to someone else by stating that they did not prepare the food and I should contact someone else. This response was totally, unfriendly and unacceptable. A simple response of “are you ok?” and
“what can we do to help you?” would have made a world of difference in my impression and my feel of Delta’s culture.

To recap, please check with your food service provider and make sure that there are no more glass pieces in your salads. I do not want anyone else be caught in the same situation as I or even worst if anyone get hurt because of the glass in their food. Second, please re-evaluate your exception handling procedures with your flight attendants. This situation could have been a none issue if the attitude and the actions of the flight attendants were much better. All in all, I think it will be a benefit to the over all public view of Delta Airlines.

Thank you for your time and please let me know if you need any additional information regarding my experience and regarding the broken glass in my food.

Thanks again for your time and looking forward to hear Delta’s Response.

Min-Hsao Chen

PS. I will be posting this story on my blog and other social networking site. I am hoping to hear a response from Delta.

Delta Airline’s Response is a follows…

Continue reading My Awful Experience with Delta Airlines!!!

Mount Si Hiking Pictures

Updating my blog and just chilling…

The last couple of days been pretty busy, with my family visiting… I moved from the master bed room to the guest bedroom, and from the guest bedroom to the office. But the exciting thing is my parents and my uncle from taiwan are all here in Seattle visiting me. It is good to be with family 🙂

So as for work… it has been pretty busy. Good news is that we got the NY project. Even after the lack of onsite interview… YEAH YEAH!!!! so NYC here I come.

More updates to come.

Remaining in Seattle after all …

{This is a backfill post}
What an interesting day today, I woke up early this morning, got ready and went to the airport. I parked my car in an off site parking lot, I got to the terminal, I went through the security line and I got to the gate. I was still early, so I went around and look for some food. I got an bottle of OJ and a musubi and went back to the gate. Shortly after, they started the boarding process. I checked in, walking half way through the jet way and then my boss came walking up from the airplane. He said. “well, I just talked to the pilot and they said they don’t understand why we’re still taking off”. The pilot also said that a lot of planes already got cancelled. So my boss ask us if we should go or not. Finally our boss decided to cancel our trip to New York and not risk the chance of getting stuck either in New York or worse get stuck halfway between here in New York because we’re unable to land in New York and miss our interview.

So after walking back out to the terminal, and pick my car back up … I was back to work in Seattle 🙂

A Beautiful Blue Bird Day for Snowboarding

Yes this morning I did feel better but I had a commitment with the Seattle Auburn Club on a snow day trip so … on a beautiful Saturday I am out on the slops. It was an amazing day, it was also my first trip really gone out into the back country. It sucked. I hiked for over 30 minutes in knee deep snow and then I was tripping left and right coming down on the bad snow. But the view was amazing.

All in all it was a great day and my lungs really cleared up.

On 7th Heaven on a blue bird day!!

Back in the days when I had one gigabit per second to my home…

Years ago before I moved to Seattle, I was working in Grant County PUD as a telecom engineer.  At one time, I was actually the responsible engineer for their Fiber to the Home project there.  It was super interesting when we were  providing 1 gigabit connections to all the houses in Grant county.  We were also doing triple play at this time.  Triple play is when a service provider is providing voice, data, and video.  This may not be a big deal today, but this was in 2003 in Grant county Washington.

So today, I learned that Google is going to try to provide Gigabit Fiber to the Home (FTTH) network.

Interesting… but we’ve done it before already in GC.  But with that said… I am sure google will do a better job.  it just seems like we had some good ideas but just not at the right time.

Just like this Google power meter thing… we did that too… 😉