Probably depends on the type of job/industry. If you're an actor or tech, no biggie. If you're a accountant, it'd probably signal some HUGE red flags. That being said, you don't have much to lose by reaching out informally to B C D E, besides that you may be ineligible to work there for a couple years if they don't like what you did to firm A. I knew a ton of people who went Countrywide because they offered good pay and inflated titles. Pretty much everyone was miserable going there (and knew it would be). That sort of decision would weigh negatively on you.
One option if you haven't been there that long is to simply show it as a work gap and never mention the position on your resume or otherwise.
SoCal is still a zoning mess. The whole of West LA needs to densify.
California's market is also made much worse by Prop 13, so people go through a lot of shenanigans to avoid property tax increases, and it primarily just hurts the schools since they can't properly fund themselves.
Airbnb seems like the best option for travelling on the cheap or with family in Europe. Hotel prices/sizes are pretty rough compared to the US (but then again, all major cities suck ass - yes I'm looking at you NYC). That being said, Holiday Inn next to the convention center is $100 a night in September (I assume no convention).
Only challenge I saw with Helsinki was that there is only 1 hotel next to the convention center with 244 rooms only, so maybe staying somewhere downtown is an option as well.
A lot of companies have programs to hire x-military, and I've seen plenty of officers with MBAs and such. The one thing you need though is clear direction on exactly what you want to do, if you want to successfully enter corporate america. If you are an officer, I'd recommend at least taking a few classes on management before making the switch, since there are some basics you probably need to learn.
I'll have to start saving my miles to make it to helsinki! I have 13 months to cobble them together, so that should work.
I didn't realize that Helsinki was so close to st petersburg, I may have to see if I can work that into a trip too! Or Amsterdam/Coppenhagen... I'll probably only have 8 days so really can only make it to 1 city.
Edit: I'll make a post on how to travel there on miles. Should be pretty easily doable for most people - 60K round trip, that's probably regular spending and a direct tv subscription or something.
My official trip report (sorry for the length, trying to show off my writing skills, and names withheld for legal purposes):
Tue - arrived, made it 15 feet out of the hotel before randomly encountering BwBers at a bar
Wed - registered, went to bars/parties (I think)
Thu - float, reading, bars/parties
Fri - went to a panel, bars/parties
Sat - went to 2 panels (yes a record), went to a bar, went to the hugos, went to a bar
Sun - check out, snuck out to the airport