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I ❤️ APIs

Last week I was out in the Bay Area for the I ❤️ APIs conference at San Francisco’s Fort Mason Center. I flew out a couple days early to spend some time exploring the coast with Kaitlin and Aaron, and then took in some interesting sessions covering API design, business development, and community building.

Golden Gate

Check out the rest of the pictures in the gallery.

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Berlin Beer Tour

To celebrate Jason’s birthday, Elizabeth suggested that we all buy tickets to a Berlin Beer Tour and surprise Jason with them when we arrived in Berlin. It was a fun idea and the tour turned out to be great. We went into it thinking we’d get to visit three different spots and ended up visiting at least twice that, with stops for Currywurst and Bierliquor sprinkled in as well.

We met Bastian (short for Sebastian), the guide, and the rest of the tour at the Weihenstephaner beer hall in Hackeschen Markt. That was also our first stop, which was convenient. The tour guide was a little worried because we had just enjoyed a liter in their Biergarten, but we assured him that it was fine and things got underway.

Dave, Jason, Elizabeth, Brian, Tom, Celeste, Jenny, and Kortni at Brauhaus Lemke.

In addition to the five of us, there were three others on the tour, plus Bastian. There was Jenny, a British woman who was clearly there to spend quality time with Bastian, and another couple from the UK: a rugby player named Tom and his girlfriend Celeste.

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Hackescher Markt, Marienkirche, Fernsehturm, and the River Cruise

The morning of September 21 was clear, an ideal day for sightseeing. We needed to be in Hackescher Markt later in the day for a Berlin Breweries Tour, so we headed to the eastern part of the city and started exploring.

Crêpes

In fact, our first stop was Hackescher Markt on the way to Alexanderplatz and the TV-Tower. Kortni bought a Nutella crêpe from a vendor who made it in front of us, and Dave and I bought bratwurst on rolls. Mine was delicious; unfortunately, his was not fully cooked and so he only ate about ⅔ of his.

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Classic

Now that’s a movie collection!

Birdemic: Shock and Terror, Lord of the Rings trilogy, and Zombieland

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From the German History Museum to an Augustiner Beer Hall

Our second day in Berlin was a little rainy, but that worked out ok because we spent most of the day inside. Our goal was to visit the Deutsches Historisches Museum, which is basically the German Smithsonian (Note: I have not been to the Smithsonian.). En route to the museum, though, we ran into a couple of other sights which piqued our interest.

Between the U-Bahn and the museum we walked through an upscale shopping area where there was a Mercedes showroom / museum. They had several old Mercedes as well as some of their higher-end cars on display. Remo was very excited as he is a passionate Mercedes Man. In fact, one of his (unfulfilled) goals for the trip was to rent a Mercedes and drive it on the Autobahn. Alas, the showroom would have to do. He and Kortni did buy some memorabilia as gifts.

Zentrale Gedenkstätte der Bundesrepublik Deutschland für die Opfer des Krieges und der Gewaltherrschaft

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Germany: Day One, Part Two

Our story picks up after our late lunch at Maximillions. Our hunger sated, and four of us fairly delirious with exhaustion (Elizabeth has been in Europe for two weeks already, performing an audit of the Luxembourg office), we decided to head into a more residential area of the city for more beers. Remo had heard of a microbrewery called Hops and Barley, an idea that appealed to all. 

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Birthtoberfest 2013

Hallo aus Deutschland! I’ve been in Germany for several days, on a trip to celebrate the 30th birthdays of me and my friends Jason and David. Of course Elizabeth and Kortni are here as well. We spent three days in Berlin before taking the train to Munich for Oktoberfest!

Having been to Germany a couple times before, but never to Berlin, I was excited to see the capital city. I met Jason, Dave, and Kortni, who flew together, at the airport. After a short bus ride we arrived at our hotels and checked in, and Elizabeth joined us shortly after. I stayed at the Hampton Berlin City West with the rest of the group staying at the nearby Kempinski Hotel Bristol Berlin. It was a fairly convenient spot, with a nearby U-Bahn (subway) stop, Starbucks, Irish Pub, and döner kebap stand, thereby meeting all our immediate needs.

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Sorry it took so long to get back to you…

It was hard posting this because it’s going to knock the Tyler Griffey IU GIF off the top spot, but I guess it had to happen sometime. Anyway, I came across this today:

The longer I procrastinate on returning phone calls and emails, the more guilty I feel about it. The guilt I feel causes me to avoid the issue further, which only leads to more guilt and more procrastination. It gets to the point where I don’t email someone for fear of reminding them that they emailed me and thus giving them a reason to be disappointed in me.

Man, that’s spot on for me, especially with personal stuff. The initial procrastination comes from a good place (he tells himself)—I don’t feel like I have time to respond to give this the response it deserves—but as more time goes on, the threshold for “what this deserves” just keeps going up! And then the aforementioned guilt spiral, meaning it doesn’t even get a response it doesn’t deserve. If I’ve done that to you, I apologize. It’s something I need to work on. If not—send me an email, and we’ll see what happens. :-)

Thanks to this comic from The Oatmeal for the link.

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Illinois Takes Down #1 Indiana

Had a lot of fun watching the Illinois–Indiana game the other day with Jared and Charlie. I may have been the only one screaming at Murphy’s Pub in Urbandale, but how else was I supposed to react?

GIF of the last seconds of the Illinois game

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