When I was younger I collected Pokemon cards and watched the anime. This was the beginning of a hobby I never would have guessed would be such a part of my adult life. Flash forward to July 2016, the month that Pokemon Go was released. That summer was crazy with huge groups of people gathering at the pond or various places around town to catch the virtual creatures that were part of their childhood. So the group was mostly early to mid 20 somethings hanging out and reminiscing about our childhood. In July of 2016 I still had Motorola Zeal, still probably one of my favorite phones I have ever owned but I was beginning to feel left behind. *Cue the dramatic music of sadness please….. Thank you very much musicians of the mind* With problems like missing texts from work and not being able to play Pokemon Go on my account, I was borrowing my girlfriend's account at the time, my world was about to change. I went down to the Verizon store and I picked up my first ever smartphone. I started playing Pokemon Go, also my first Pokemon game ever, joined team Instinct and slowly found out I was not going to be able to compete with the people that have been playing since day one.
I tried for a few months to get into gyms in Los Alamos but they were all controlled by Mystic. Mystic had become a kind of an enemy of Valor and Instinct, in Los Alamos, because of how aggressive they were at the time and how the gym system worked. For those of you that do not know the old gym system had a prestige point system that was used to calculate how many people could be in a gym maxing out at 10. When you saw a gym with max prestige points it was scary, every night I got off work the Mystic gyms were powerful towers of oppression. If there was space in the gym of your teams you could train the gym up by battling your own team and this allowed you to raise the prestige and put a pokemon in to defend. I never really got a chance to use this system because my pokemon were weak and Mystic had a such strong presence. You can follow this links below and see how the gym system was at the beginning. The first video also shows what it was like with the community at that time. Just moving with a large group and having a good time hanging out! This video brought back the memories of the early days but also remembering the frustration of not being able to get into a gym that had 3 Blisseys! *rage* I was looking at colleges based on the Instinct gym control at the time because I wanted to make sure I would be able to play when I went to college still working on that. A part of me really wants to try the old gym system now that I have a team that is able to compete but Niantic is not going to bring it back.
This video shows more the community
Trainer Tips - Fastest Way to Take over Level 10 Gyms in Pokemon Go
This video explains the gym system in the early day
Trainer Tips - How to Defend and Hold Gyms in Pokemon Go
Since the gym system was too difficult I felt defeated and took a hiatus until one of my coworkers, Jess, told me how White Rock was an Instinct safe haven, partially thanks to 1Sneeke1. I started up my pokemon go adventure again in the fall of 2017 which meant a lot of driving to White Rock. However my pokemon go adventure was about to take another hiatus on Christmas eve 2017, the day I broke my ankle. 12/24/17 was the day I figured out ice skating is not my sport and also started my 2 months of sitting at home to heal from the surgeries. In March of 2018 I was continuing my physical therapy, more on my own because the physical therapist had done what they could. I just had to keep walking and keeping my ankle flexible but it was never going to be the same. The hard facts of life had crushed my dreams of being a professional ninja. Le tears! I did not let this stop me though in fact it pushed me to do more. I found out there are two gyms at the top of the ski hill and decided I want it! The first time a spoofer took my gyms and that hurt because it was 2 hours of hiking to get those gyms and they took it in 5 minutes, I enjoyed the hike though so not a total loss. I told Jess about this “atrocity” and we decided to go get the gym back for Instinct! I probably would not have been motivated, the way I was, to climb Pajarito if Pokemon Go did not exist. I have used Pokemon Go to help motivate me to walk more and during a good week I do about 25km or 15 miles or walking. I have even gotten the 50km or 30 miles walking bonus a few times but that was a lot of walking! When I worked for the Brew Pub I would have adventure sync, a part of the app that will measure miles while the app was closed, to collect the miles I would walk during a shift.
I have also gained a fascination to travel more and go explore more things because of Pokemon Go. I took a trip last year to Colorado to see Buckcherry in Colorado Springs and then went to Moab for a few days. During the whole trip I was able to use Pokemon Go as a map to see where we were going on trails or be able to look into the history of some sites, if the poke stops had the history written in the description of the photo disc. I would like to have a gold gym on every continent, minus Antarctica unless they have a gym there. If they do I'll find a way to get there! Until then I have every gym in Los Alamos, the Ski hill area, White Rock, a couple on the outskirts of Santa Fe and one in Colorado gold! If anyone wants to talk Pokemon Go let me know, my gamertag is Kwadd1234. I have really enjoyed my journey with Pokemon Go, going out and exploring more areas, doing more walking, and creating friendships with people like Jess and Jaecob as well as strangers in town when we do community days!
Follow me on Instagram @kwadd1234_lvl40
tik tok @kwadd1234
Be Safe Be Happy!
KWADD1234 stats as of 07/22/2020
Gold Gyms: 71
KM walked: 4307.6
Pokemon caught: 40,605
Total XP: 32,912,228
Recently I listened to Diane Von Furstenberg masterclass about building a fashion brand and while there was a lot of information about building a fashion brand there was a focus on life lessons. Diane focused on the idea of being specific with your dream and designing your life. To quote Diane “the more precise you are about what you want to do, the more successful you will be.” This idea is one that I have heard my whole life being that what you think and say is what you become. One of the easiest and funniest ways to get your vision in front of you is to make a vision board. Today I'm going to vision board about my dream garage.
First is my favorite car ever, the 1997 Toyota Supra. This is a rear wheel drive, 3.0 litre inline 6, twin turbo beast! The Toyota Supra was discontinued in the US in 1998 and then finally discontinued in Japan in 2002. In 2001 the MK4 Supra became popular with the release of The Fast and Furious. There is a fan base surrounding the car because of the movie however this is not where I fell in love with the car. The first Supra I saw was in high school, one of my classmates got one somehow, and I fell in love with the design. Since that day I have learned more about the car and realized that it is a monster of a machine! The Supra came stock with 220- 320 horsepower but can be modified to give it 1000+ horses. When I get my Supra I will upgrade it to 500+ horsepower and keep it as a daily driver. I'll paint it with a sapphire, black custom rims, 35% window tint, and keep the stock body style. Mechanically I will upgrade the engine to receive the 500+ horsepower, aftermarket exhaust, cold air intake, stronger brakes, and excellent street tires. Some would want to put more power in the car but 500 horses is plenty. Sapphire blue is a great color for a Supra and the black rims are going to accent with the tinting. This is my absolute favorite car and I can not wait for the day that I get to drive one!
Second, a 1995 Ford F350! I am not as familiar with this truck's mechanics but I love the aesthetic. I would lift this truck 6 inches, get the big rugged tires, a classic ford 90’s truck paint job with the black grey and white scale, the visor coming off the roof. I would keep the engine and the exhaust stock. The F350 would be more of a work truck to move large objects or yard work on the estate. I would give it an amazing sound system and some light bars on the front and back. Otherwise I want to keep this truck fairly stock and with a simple build.
Third would be the 2012 Subaru WRX STI hatchback. The WRX comes with a 305 horsepower 2.5 litre H-4 engine and all wheel drive. This is a mean looking hatch and I would get the aftermarket body to help accent the muscle of the WRX. Gun metal grey, black rims, RGB halo headlight kit (like the red headlight above), a bigger wing, and 35% window tint. I would keep it mechanically stock because Subaru makes a great car and the specific sound of a WRX exhaust is one of the best sounds in the auto world. Internally I would upgrade the audio system and add a lighting system inside the cab that would coordinate with the RGB headlights. This would be my “ricer” car that I want to look aggressive and catch attention as I cruise around town!
This is just the beginning of my dream garage! Writing this out makes me more excited to reach this vision in my future. I would encourage anyone to do a vision board about anything that you want in the future may it be a certain job, house, lifestyle, etc. If you can make a visual board it helps more because every time you look at your vision board it will reinforce that dream! Hope you are all doing well!
Be Safe, Be Happy!
A while ago I was scrolling through tiktok making a “controversial” statement that the “Homesick” album is the best and heaviest album made by A Day to Remember. Now I have listened to this specific album multiple times and thoroughly enjoyed it, but I have not listened to most of their discography. So today we are going to do a quick review of A Day to Remember starting back in 2005 with an ep called “Halos for Heros, Dirt for the Dead”
Their first EP “Halos for Heros, Dirt for the Dead” was released in 2004. You hear the beginning sounds of A Day to Remember forming. Metalcore, some screamo with clean vocals, the one soft song, and pop punk style lyrics. Overall the 5 song ep was pretty good. The sound quality is not great but you can definitely see the beginnings of A Day to Remember (ADTR). The sound quality of this album is not the best but that makes sense for a band's first album, the EP is really good though. The softest song is “The Sun Has Set” an acoustic break up song. The heaviest song is “If Looks Could Kill… Then You’d Be Dead” which will later be renamed into “If Looks Could Kill.” Overall this is a nice EP to start off the discography.
Favorite Songs: Breathe Hope In Me,
“And Their Name was Treason” being their first full length album has a great metalcore sound, About a 50/50 screamo to clean vocals. The song “Heartless” being the heaviest and “You Had Me at Hello” being the softest. Throughout the album you can hear that Jeremy McKinnon is still fine tuning his vocals but you can definitely hear the distinct ADTR vocal sound taking form. Another note was that lyrics have an angry tone to most of the songs except “You had me at Hello,” which is an acoustic song that sounds like a bittersweet sad love song. Overall this is a great album!
Favorite Songs: Second Glance, Heartless
“For Those Who Have Heart” was released in 2008 and this album definitely shows how the band has improved musically. Jeremy’s vocals were so much better on this album. His screams were stronger and his clean vocals were cleaner and more controlled. The softest song is definitely “The Price We Pay” which is a nice acoustic that is very repetitive but enjoyable. The heaviest song on the album “The Danger of Starting a Fire.” “The Plot to Bomb the Panhandle” came in a close second for the drop at 3:41 but “The Sanger of Starting a Fire” is just heavier throughout the whole song. “For Those Who Have Heart” has increased production quality and the bands overall skill made their second full album fantastic!
Favorite Songs: Speak of the Devil, The Plot to Bomb the Panhandle, Monument, Here’s to the Past, and Since U Been Gone
Their next album is “Old Record” is exactly what it sounds like, an old record. ADTR re-recorded the album in 2 days at request from their record label, according to a wiki page about the album “And Their Name was Treason.” Changes included better production quality, a different tracklist, and the song titles were changed a little. For example “1958” is now “Nineteen Fifty Eight” and “You had me at Hello” is now “You Had Me @ Hello.” Since it was done so fast the instrumental were the only new recording leaving the original vocals which explains why “Old Record” has a different experience but not that different. Overall I really enjoy this album and like the way the tracklist was laid out which gave it a better flow to the album!
Favorite Songs: Heart less, A 2nd Glance, Your Way with Words is Through Silence
“Homesick” the album that started this whole journey, this is also the first ADTR album I bought! This is the first album with all new songs, so let us break it down! The first thing you will notice is that the production quality is better. Vocally and instrumentally the band is solid! Not that they were not before the album, just more solid! This album is also noticeably heavier and the lyrics are not as dark as previous songs like songs like “You Should have Killed me When you Had the Chance.” In fact this album has an air of fighting against oppression and achieving their dreams. The album also seems like a snapshot of them really starting to live the band life. Touring, being away from family and loved ones, wondering if it is going to work out, and trying to prove themselves. “If it Means a Lot to You” is the last song on the album and the softest. It is a mostly acoustic song that tells a story of a couple that is separated while he is on the road and that they understand their situation but also want each other close. Overall this album is consistently heavy, not really having a song that was the heaviest. However I am going to give it to “I’m made of Wax, Larry, What are You Made Of?” for the drop at 1:53. Overall “Homesick” is a great album that is fun to listen to all the way through, I have listened to it 7 times fully while writing this little review.
Favorite Songs: The Downfall of Us All, “I’m Made of Wax, Larry, What are you Made of?,” NJ Legion Iced Tea, Mr. Highway’s thinking About the End, Have Faith in Me
“What Separates Me From You” was released in 2011. This album starts with the song “Sticks & Bricks” which hits you like a wave! This is the first album that does not have a soft acoustic song leaving “If I Leave” as the softest song. The heaviest song has got to be “2nd Sucks” because the bass hits hard and heavy throughout the whole song. The softest song on the album is “If I Leave” although it is not an acoustic song it is the calmest. I enjoyed this album a lot and if ADTR does a 10 year anniversary for this album tour next year I’m going! This album, up to this point, is probably my favorite because the track list, quality, and overall vibe of the album is great!
Favorite Songs: All I Want, All Signs Point to Lauderdale, This is the House That Doubt Built, You Be Tails, I’ll Be Sonic
P.S. I will go to that concert if things get back to normal.
“Common Courtesy” was released in 2013 and has a few songs that are about reminiscing about the past 10 years of being a band. They also had a couple songs about how the fame has not changed them just where they have been and what they have done. After a first listen through I really love the song “I Remember” and “Right Back At It Again.” Something I really like is that after the song “I Remember” has ended there is audio of the band reminiscing about their adventures on the road. The album has the ADTR vibes but also has a slight change having a more pop punk sound than the metalcore sound they have carried up to this point. They still have that metalcore sound in songs like “Sometimes You’re The Hammer, Sometimes You’re The Nail” and “Life Lessons Learned The Hard Way.” The hardest song is “Dead & Buried.” Overall the bass hits hard until the chorus when the song has a more rock sound but the drops at 1:10 and 2:19 are the heaviest on the album. The softest song is “I’m Already Gone” which is a nice acoustic song that has the vibe of walking alone at twilight thinking about life. Overall I really liked this album and the creative difference from previous albums.
Favorite Songs: City of Ocala, Right Back At It Again, I Remember, Best of Me, “Sometimes You’re The Hammer, Sometimes You’re the Nail,” I’m Already Gone
The last album they have released is “Bad Vibrations.” “Bad Vibrations” has a nice progression from the harder songs at the beginning to the softer songs at the end. “Exposed” is the heaviest song on the album with a heavy hitting bass and the drop at 3:08 is insane! “Forgive and Forget” is the softest song on the album. “Forgive and Forget” has a similar start acoustic end a little hard style as “If it Means a lot to You” with a different message in the lyrics. Overall this album is very different from previous ADTR albums showing a slightly different direction for their style but it had lyrical similarities to their early albums. I did really enjoy hearing their new stuff although it is not my favorite I have a few songs that were really good.
Favorite Songs: We got This, Same About You, In Florida, Paranoia, Bullfight
This is the end to my journey to find the heaviest A Day to Remember album! I believe that the tiktocker was wrong saying that “Homesick” was the heaviest ADTR album although it is a fantastic album! I would say that “What Separates Me From You” is their heaviest album and after listening to all their stuff I would say that it has become my favorite album as well! I would encourage anyone to listen to any of their favorite bands' full discography start to finish. It allows you to really get to know the albums and the songs. Much like how listening to “Common Courtesy” gave me a snapshot into the band's life and be part of what they were experiencing at that time of their life. Also I had not paid enough attention to the fact that “Old Record” was just a partial rerecording of “And Their Name Was Treason” and learning that got me to go learn more about the album. This was an experience I thought would take maybe a day or two but turned into about a week long musical adventure. Maybe I’ll do this again but I’ll look at the band Seether and how their style changed from “Disclaimer” to “Poison the Parish.” Good luck on your own musical journeys!
“Music is the moonlight in the gloomy night of life.” - Jean Paul Friend
Be Safe Be Happy
I am a night owl. The early morning hours when everyone is asleep is such a great time for getting projects done or hearing the silence of the world. Well it is 4 am and I am stuck in a rabbit hole that is respiring my dreams.
I found a show called Car Masters: Rust to Riches. The show follows a custom car garage called Gotham Garage in Temecula California. I have always been interested in cars and business and this show combines both with a splash of creative artistry. The owner Mark Towle and his team do custom builds of hot rods and classic cars. In episode one my attention was grabbed by both Mark's business model and his love of creating cars that are both unique and support the Gotham Garage name.
His business model runs on the idea of trading one project for another project that will make more money. Mark referenced the story of that guy that started trading a paperclip and ended with a house. This has always been a story that has interested me and although the time is not right with the whole pandemic, I have been inspired to try this, like actually trying. I’m going to start with a paperclip and see where it leads me.
Mark has an employee named Shawn Pilot who is his deal finder. Shawn is an optimistic salesman who goes out looking for people that want to make the trades. He is the guy that knows a guy. Watching Shawn work on making deals is exciting because watching products move and bargaining deals is like a game with a rush. It is almost like the stock market but there it is in person.
I also appreciate Mark’s desire for quality in the projects that leave his shop. He wants every project to leave with the Gotham Garage stamp. Also his artistic creativity, with the help of his crew, creates amazing pieces of art. A couple of my favorite projects were their 1954 Ford Thunderbird, a hot rod that had a tequila bottle for the radiator overflow, and the Futura project.
Being stuck in quarantine has been an adventure allowing me to explore more music. While exploring music I was remembering all the shows I went to last year. I saw somewhere around 42+ bands in a year. I wanted to share some of my experiences of these shows with you guys!
Most of the shows I went to were metal at The historic El Rey theatre, Sunshine Theatre, and Isleta Amphitheater. While shows like Slipknot, Iron Maiden, and other huge performances come to Isleta I really love small venues because you get so close to the bands and the crowd is packed into this "tiny" room with no where to move! The first story is coming from the Black Label Society concert. The show opened up with a band from New Zealand called Alien Weaponry, amazing trash metal even better live! After waiting in line for a while you walk in the front doors on either side there is a set of stairs that go up to the bathrooms and the balcony where adults can sit, drink and enjoy the show with no mosh pits, but that is not the area you wanna go to. On the left side there is a doorway that opens to a ramp that walks by all the band merch. There is a plexiglass wall on your right as you walk down to the pit. If you want merch this is the time to get it because after the shows everyone has already bought merch for the most part. When you reach the bottom of the ramp you see an open concrete floor. The stage is about 50-60 feet in front of you, open space for 150 to your right and another 15 feet to your left. This space is not that big, compared to Isleta where you can fit 15,00 people. As everyone starts to fill in the like 10 feet turns to 5 feet then slowly it becomes just a few inches between you and someone in direction. Now typically i do not believe most would enjoy standing in close proximity with a few hundred strangers but this is the beginning and everyone is just waiting for the show to start. You see all types of people. The tall guy that no one can see around, the veterans of metal shows in their war jackets showing off all the shows they have gone too, and the chill old dude. These are just a few examples. Then we just wait sometimes singing to the music playing that stage crews are playing but then the projector screen showing ads begins to ascend into the ceiling, the lights start to dim and the crowd comes to life! Make sure you got your ear protection in!
At this concert I was in the middle on the edge of the mosh pit. The crowd in front of me opens up violently creating a circle as people start slamming into each other. Being on the edge of the pit I was helping push people back into the pit or helping those who up that have fallen. As the Black Dahlia Murder showers the crowd in Metal riffs and screams the mosh pit picks up pace. Typically I am one of the bigger people but I see this one guy. He stands about 6’4 he is dressed in a Hawaii floral shirt and Khaki shorts, also he is not a small dude. Being on the wall of the pit the moshers will slam into you as they run around the circle. I see the man in the Hawaii short coming around and he slams into me. I get thrown back a couple feet and almost off my feet. The people behind me push me back into the pit after regaining their footing. This is an amazing experience! As the pit continues people fall down the moshers stop pick them up make sure they are ok then continue like nothing happened. At one point I lose sight of the man in the Hawaiian shirt. As I look to my left I see him recoiled back in a group of his friends as he prepares to launch himself into the mosh pit! 3,2,1 and he comes barreling into the ready crowd who braces them self and then push him into the circle pit.. This was probably one of my favorite mosh pits I have been in!
My name is Karmichael Pocaterra, but everyone knows me as Kai. I have lived in Los Alamos my whole life! I have worked with the YMCA for 10 years working with the Teen Center and the Climbing wall mostly.
I love cars, music, and business/marketing. I look forward to one day owning my own business, potentially a franchise and rentals. When I am not working I am playing Pokemon Go, Go team Instinct! I have gotten gold in all of Los Alamos and now I am focused on filling out my shiny Dex. Tiktok has given me a creative outlet to post Pokemon Go videos on! Go check it out Kwadd1234.
I dream of owning all my dream cars and one day getting back onto a track to race again. Some of my favorite car are the Supra MKIV, Subaru WRX, and Mazda Speed6.
I have been slowly learning how to play acoustic guitar, bass, drums and singing. I would love to perform one day in a metalcore band as a vocalist after I learn how to scream properly. I love music and hope to attend more concerts in the future. Last year I saw 30+ bands! Ice Nine Kills, Trivium, Jinjer, Buckcherry and Hozier were some of my favorite shows but there were so many amazing shows! I would love to see Ice Nine Kills, Trivium and Sleeping with Sirens again! Bands I am looking forward to seeing Theory of a Deadman, Atreyu, I Prevail, and so many other bands in the future
In the future I will post videos I have found about stock market stuff, car videos, and talking about bands I have found.
Be Safe Be Happy,