Ok, so I just spent an hour fishing through this site and I have to say, I am hooked. Granted the 11 question Accounting exam due at 10 pm tomorrow night is feeling a bit neglected but homework be damned, I'm going to blog!
So I suppose an introduction may be in order, my name is Matt Barth and I'm an Albuquerque native from birth. I graduated from Del Norte in '99 alongside some of the brightest minds this world will ever see (as well as some of the oddest contridictions to the Darwin's theory) and have managed to completely ruin whatever 10 year plan I put in the yearbook. I used to think that would be a bad thing but moving to Washington DC to be a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist just sounded less interesting as soon as I left the yearbook lab. Since then I've sampled every tasty morsel the Albuquerque job market has allowed me: call centers, restaurants, nightclubs, you name it, I've done it. Here I am almost 10 years after high school and I've found myself finally enjoying a point to make real forward progress. Next year my beautiful girlfriend of 4 years and I will be married, I'm currently Assistant Customer Service Manager at the second busiest branch for a very nifty regional bank (ask and I may tell) and the housing market may be ripe for my picking when we decide to lock down.
Biographical blog intro aside, I went driving around the city this morning (can't sleep with this damn test waiting but I'll find a way to put it off!) and was genuinely amazed at how much things have changed in very little time. Now, if you read this and remember when Wyoming was a dirt road, just remember I'm 26 and thus too young to remember when there were 4 drive-in theaters in Albuquerque. I do remember when there was one drive-in though, I remember hearing the drive-in was going to be bulldozed to build a new "multi-plex" and no one wanted to like the Century Rio 24. I remember later working at the Rio as a teenager (then again at 20) as a cashier and watching the Clear Channel building being built ruining my view of the Sandias. I remember when San Mateo and I-40 was a really weird transition point between Central and Menaul. When they started building Circuit City and then the Pavilions, no one wanted to like it, it ruined a great view down the freeway. I remember when American Toyota seemed like the last place on earth until you hit Bernalillo (which was hardly a place worth stopping at) and then it was nothing to Budaghers.
Even within the recent years it's been amazing to see the changes. My fiancee and I have left a path of destruction behind us. We met one night at the Phoenix nightclub (all-ages foam party!) which is now a Walgreens. We got to know each other as I worked at Madstone (hi Sophie!) which is now a part of the Hummer dealership. We used to go gift shopping at Martha's Body Bueno with our cars parked at the University (thank God Martha's only moved and wasn't closed).
Don't get me wrong, I'm not the 26 year old "Damn kids and those corporations keep ruining things!"-er. Some great things have sprouted in all this change, Self Serve, the great new architecture at UNM, the film studios, the many new jobs being built on all edges of the city I just kinda miss some of the old views.