Thursday, December 24, 2009

dear santa.

dear santa--
please forgive my writing this so late in the game and for writing it as a blog post. short notice and unconventional format may, i know, work against me. however, the way i see it, you know if i've been (or may yet be in these final hours of christmas eve) naughty or nice, you should be aware of this post. besides, i think mrs. claus is a follower of the blog, so i'm sure she can pass this along. and as far as having what i'm asking for in stock, i feel they are all either run of the mill enough that you have plenty, or they've been unpopular for long enough that you'll be eager to get rid of your surplus from years past. i may even get to of the out of season items. and some of them are more to do with changing some aspect of my life rather than giving me something. those i'm sure will be more long term anyway, so you can take care of those after a bit of r&r following your christmas run. but i digress...

earlier this month i realized i'd yet to write you this year, but with scheduling what it was, the better part of december somehow passed me by and i find myself with you having minimal input on my christmas gifts this year and no thanks for your no doubt generous stop at my house. so. thank you very much for your generosity. and here's my christmas list.

1. a straight razor and all the accompanying components that are needed to use it effectively. for a while now, i've been looking to purchase one. shave ready, if you don't mind. i know you're probably wondering why. here's the thing, i hate shaving. the only fun shaving can be is when i forget to (or let out the rebel inside and choose not to... i know, that's naughty. i usually don't.) and decide to give myself chops. you probably read my post about that a while ago. anyway, since i have to shave either way, i've decided to embrace it and shave like a man. a man from the early nineteen hundreds. or a man who lives in the outdoors for a living. check this clip out and tell me you don't feel the same way. though i can understand that you won't feel quite the same as you've that delightful beard of yours. but just picture yourself in my shoes.

i'll be needing the razor, the water stone, and the strop. i can take care of the brush and soap, though.

2. more facial hair to make shaving it off more satisfying. i have enough to keep it worthwhile, but more would be nice. it's like scraping a car. if there's lot of snow and ice, it's very satisfying. if there's only frost, it's just annoying.

3. a furby. i don't mean to be a pest santa, but it's been a good solid ten years i've been asking, and it's been a good solid ten years i've had a disappointing christmas morning. don't get me wrong, i've loved every christmas, but the furby shaped hole in my heart has yet to be filled. i'm losing hope for it these days, but i couldn't bear the idea of not asking.

4. a mandolin. to be honest santa, this is sort of a loaded question. i've been borrowing a mandolin from my friend jordan for a bit now, and though any mandolin would do, i've grown attached to this one... and i named her mandy. so for christmas santa, i'd like mandy. i'm happy to pay for her, just make it possible that i can pay for her. as a side note, some actual talent as pertaining to the mandolin would also be much appreciated.

5. assistance through next semester. so, i really could have used your help this last semester, santa. things didn't go so well between me getting sick four times and hating half of my classwork. and not like "i don't want to study" hate, i mean like "i hated the subject matter like you couldn't believe" hate.

6. a successful launch of tng. santa, i'm sure you're aware of this as you'll be seeing plenty of children with a copy of trace's nerdy game on their wish list next christmas. it's a working title, so watch for the title change, but i'm sure you keep up pretty well with these sort of things. anyway, me and a few friends are working on it and trying to get the rules and so on established so we can actually play a game of it. with that being said, i'm more worried about putting it out there than i am developing it. so please be a friend and slip a note to watch for it this year in any nerdy games you give out tonight. by the way, if you're wondering how to play, we've some videos that should help you here.

7. the willpower to exercise and become more manly. santa, we both know i've the personality of an alpha male, now i just need the physique to match. i've been running a bit for a little while, and this summer i "pumped iron" which was satisfying. with school, though, running is trickier and the said iron has not been as easy to pump. so. santa. man to man, be a friend and a)up my willpower so that i have the drive to work out, b)add an extra hour to my day, and then somehow make sure i don't spend my twenty-fifth hour playing peggle, or c)send me a workout routine to follow that includes cadbury advent calendars to give me an incentive to keep it up. also, if you could send me a couple of wife beaters for me to work out in and some cool tribal-design temporary tattoos, that would be nice.

8. another year free of major illness. so, i know i may have made a bit of a fuss over having/not having swine flu and being sick several more times after that this semester, but i don't have anything life threatening or chronic so far, and i appreciate that. another year of that would be delightful.

9. a record deal. so this one really means "please let me play at an open mic night" but i thought i'd be ambitious and just ask for something pie in the sky, dig? thanks. with the production you crank out yearly i don't think it would be hard for you to pull a few strings, my jolly old friend.

10. a new pair of pants. a pair that will make me look really attractive, but not skinny jeans. anything but skinny jeans. maybe the ones with the flares at the bottom. and i'd like if they were just a little snug. i'm sure you understand. life's just not complete without a snug pair of handsome denims.

11. a random three dollar purchase function from ebay. it's fun to order things from ebay for three dollars or less. it would be even more fun to do this occasionally without even knowing what i purchased. that way when i get a package in the mail, the shock of receiving a ________ will be twofold. one, at the object itself, and two that i got it for only three dollars. and since it's not a one time thing, it's the gift that keeps on giving.

12. a signed copy of bonnie tyler's "faster than the speed of night." this is something you ask for because you know you'll never buy it for yourself. you've got the connections, santa. be a pal.

13. a bigger heart. that way, next year i'll ask for things that have less to do with my "gimmeitus" and more to do with helping other people... next year.

thanks santa. i look forward to seeing all of this either under my tree in a few hours or come to be realized in the next year. drop me a line if you're ever in provo during the offseason. we'll do lunch.

your number one fan and selfish little brat,

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

the scientific method.

so. as many of you know, i was hoping to go to med school. and to be fair, i'm not completely dismissing the idea. however, this last semester has taught me something invaluable--i hate the "hard" sciences. just to clarify, that doesn't mean the challenging sciences, that means things that don't involve people, essentially. psychology, for instance, is often considered a "soft" science. well soften me up, folks, for if soft be psychologists, soft i hope to be. and while the idea of being a medical doctor does still has it's appeal... well, read on.

here's the thing. this semester was an experiment of sorts. the scientific method basically states that to test something, you should make a hypothesis and run the test to see how it goes. simple enough. this semester, i hypothesized that i'd be able to not only learn to beat my science courses, but that i'd learn to enjoy them. my hypothesis was based in my success, my results are based in defeat.

now, another important part of interpreting results that most people (including myself) don't learn until a bit after elementary school science is the idea of the null hypothesis. here's the example, compliments of nassim nicholas taleb. if you do a study to prove there are only white swans in the world, you can never be sure, really. the reason is there may always be a little black swan hidden away in an old man's basement somewhere, completely defying your theory (side note, there are black swans). therefore, certain phraseology is used to ensure that honesty and operational definitions are present. to assume there is no difference or your variable of choice is present(ie, there is no black swan, i don't want to be a doctor) is called 'the null hypothesis.' therefore, if we find a black swan (or find that through my classes i want to be a doctor), we would reject the null hypothesis, as it is not the case (in cases with numbers, this is done statistically, of course). however, if we do not find this to be the case, we cannot simply accept the null. you'll remember the old man with the black swan. you never really know. so instead of saying, "yes, we embrace the null. it's true." we fail to reject the null hypothesis. thus saying that as far as we can tell, the null holds true.

this semester, as pertaining to my wanting to go to med school, i found no black swans. i failed to reject the null. that means that as far as the time being is concerned, i don't especially want to be a doctor. that being said, there are errors that can play into things, of course. but i can honestly say that after this semester of dealing with chemistry again, hating biology, and finding the only bright spot in my week being my psychological testing class, that the null was pretty heavily enforced.

so next semester i'll be taking a sabbatical from all classes outside of psychology, and i'm quite excited. i'll be doing nothing but psych all day as far as academics is concerned, and i'm thrilled about it. the way i see it, next semester's null will be that i don't want to go into psychology as a professional field. i'm sincerely hoping to find a black swan.

and on a sidenote, over thanksgiving break i got to paint my nephews' and one of my niece's faces in the likeness of kiss. it's not really associated at all with the rest of my post, but still cool enough that i'm sharing it.


Saturday, November 28, 2009

irish washerwoman.

so, it's been over a month since the last post. you know what that means, if you're a regular here. time for me to give a brief recap of anything interesting that's happened over the last little while. a bit of content and not a lot of depth. i'm sure you don't mind. 

first of all, i've started learning the mandolin. i came into contact with it jamming with my pal jordan who had a mandolin by way of one friend winning it in a raffle, trading it with another friend for credit toward a bass guitar, and that friend giving it to jordan. and for now, jordan is borrowing my acoustic guitar and i'm borrowing his mandy. good stuff. i'm really enjoying how much character the thing has. jigs were never such fun to play.

the next big time investment has been trace's nerdy  game. basically a card game designed for a player to be able to play and customize in infinite directions. i'd bother trying to explain it, but really i should be writing the rules if i'm doing anything with it since i think i still have people waiting for me to get some on paper. so there. if you'd like to see some of the card designs that i've done, here you go. i'll probably do a proper post about that sometime soon. i'm sure you don't mind not seeing it now.

other than that, work and school, work and school. always a good time. besides the fact that i hate calculus and it hates me. i'm quite looking forward to winter semester. i'm taking a sabbatical from science courses and taking strictly psychology to see how i feel about the med school track. my biggest concern is the fact that i was taking biology earlier this semester, but i dropped it because it worked like a four credit hour class when it was only two hours. but on top of that, i just did not at all enjoy the material. and i'm thinking to myself, "man, this phage and cellular respiration garbage isn't very cool. and... this is a big part of medicine. interesting..." so we'll see. i've definitely made no solid plans, but i may be running back to psychology as a career path and opting for graduate school over med school. we'll see. you know i'll be posting on that later anyway.

and i'm sure your curious why there are no pictures in this post.

simply put, my parents bought a mac recently, and macs and i don't get along so well, and i can't be bothered. i'd rather just deal with no pictures in this one. and if scott happens to read this, no. i'm still not swayed. if anything, my time with my parent's mac makes me love windows even more. so there.

see you later with a post that probably won't come for another little while. 'til then, enjoy the season. i'm off to sword fight with jimmy.

Monday, October 26, 2009

lance bass.

hello world. they say you should leave the best for last. this being the last of the series of nsync posts, i think we all knew which member would be last.

"shoot for the moon. even if you miss, you'll land among the stars."
brian littrell
(about lance bass)

by way of friendly update, we're no closer to posting a link for the notebooks blog as i've still not received any submissions. so if you're really dieing to see it up and running, spread the good word.

anyway, this is one of those posts where i just get a chance to share things with everyone that i think are worth sharing. that's another reason i chose lance bass for this one. he's fantastic!

blogger and/or youtube is being a punk and the video linking is being shotty. for now, please just accept my apologies, be old fashioned, and click the link.

first of all, a string of recent musical discoveries i've enjoyed. feel free to watch at your leisure.

haley bonar
this is a good little number of her's, but she's got more. just look around on youtube and they're pretty available.
peter and the wolf
i quite enjoy this song. i was quite quick to begin recommending this crew to friends, and then started listening to their other stuff, and it wasn't quite as awesome... but anyway, it's worth checking out this song at least. also, live, they aren't exactly stellar. not to make a jab, or anything, but after watching that link, try this one. same song. live. i was a little dissapointed, though i get the impression they may have been drinking prior to this performance.

anyway, i enjoyed it.

the next is a bit of spam mail i received over the weekend. i usually don't bother cleaning out my spam folder. but when i do, i enjoy seeing if there's anything humerous to be found. for whatever reason, i found this one quite funny, and share it now.
i couldn't tell you why, but i found it hilarious. maybe i'm just imagining this scene play out.

(Lights up on a small apartment living room. The table is set for a romantic evening. Tom is seen opening a bottle of wine, the finishing touch in his preparations. The door opens. Enter Kathy.)
Kathy: Oh! What's this?
Tom: Oh, aren't you a few minutes early?
Kathy: Yeah, business got slow towards the end of the shift and Jeff let me off early. What's all this about?
Tom: Happy anniversary. (He pours a glass of wine and hands it to Kathy, then doing the same for himself. He raises his glass.) To us. (Kathy gets visibly uncomfortable. Setting down the glass, she heads for the door. He pursues her.) Kathy! What's the matter? Did I do something wrong? I didn't mean to put any pressure on you, just wanted to celebrate a little. It seems like we've been so stressed lately. I thought it was a good excuse for a little relaxing...
Kathy: (Turning around, trying to hide how upset she is.) I know, I know... It's just hard to look at you... right now... just sometimes...
Tom: Kathy? What are you saying?
Kathy: I... I... it's just... (Beat.) I do not care for your clothes. (At this she begins to cry.)
Tom: Kathy... I'm so sorry... (They embrace.) I'll change... Give me a second. I'll be right back.
(Lights begin to fade as
Tom exits to a door stage right, undoing his tie. Kathy sits, sips at her wine.)
Kathy:I do love him...
(To black. Fin.)

touching, isn't it? i think i may need to pursue that script...

and lastly, the random article function on wikipedia. give it a spin. it's good fun.

and that concludes this post, and the nsync post series. thank you justin, joey, j.c., chris and lance. you truly do make the world a brighter, since you are all such bright stars.

best wishes,

Thursday, October 22, 2009

chris kirkpatrick.

this is going to be a short post. and as such, i thought i'd name it after the shortest member of nsync, chris kirkpatrick.

yes, i know the photo isn't really all that fair, but he really is the shortest. ask any real fan and they'll tell you the same.

anyway, short post. i'm attempting to start up a new blog. it's basically themed around notebook art, as in the kind you draw during class, on the phone, at work, or anywhere else where you're really not supposed to be. this is just sort of an invitation to submit some if you wouldn't mind sharing it. you can submit your work or questions to when i get the blog up and running (which is contingent on how much i recieve, if any) i'll post a link to it, of course.

so please do submit. we'll see if this can get anywhere. and we're not picky. if you drew a flaming scorpion in microsoft paint when you should have been studying, submit it.

thanks. i hope to recieve some from the lot of you.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

j.c. chasez.

this post is a sad one. and as no member of nsync is stereotypically sad, i simply bing searched "sad nsync" and chose the first member i saw looking sad. even with such a primitive approach, it took quite a while to find one. but in the end, i did.

you've got that right, joshua. it is a time for sadness.

this week, my dear friend and pet, zatch, the blue beta, died in his fishbowl. he was a good little fish. he spent most of his days (after coming home with me) in a fishbowl with yellow and pink dancehall bottom with his good friend skeletor and some floating pods that were supposed to be plants, but instead wound up floating on the top of the water as a sort of misshapen brown beach balls. he enjoyed freeze dried blood shrimp and having his bowl cleaned as needed.

this experience reminds me greatly of when my dog, sadie, died. the situations are very different, of course. but just the same, very similar. it's not quite as emotionally draining for a twenty-two year old to lose a beta fish as it is for a twelve year old to have his dog put down, but the feeling is the same in principle. the level of emotions just aren't nearly as high.

anyway, i'll miss the little fella. he was a worthy member of the apartment and represented his namesake well. i still can't decide why i got all that attached to my late, aquatic friend. he swam around, i fed him and cleaned his tank. somehow in these seemingly impersonal interactions, though, it seems i did. this makes me wonder how i'd take it if i had a plant that died. i can't imagine it would be the same--i'm guessing because plants don't eat. but if i had a venus flytrap, i guess i might.

so, this morning, after cleaning the kitchen and finding a tang lid that i could use to transport him, i took him outside and buried him in the garden in front of my apartment. complete with tombstone to boot. (note: 'stone' was actually a sort of luggage tag)

and so, rest in peace, zatch. you were a good little friend. hopefully your grave will remain at peace at least for a little while. i can't imagine too many people go rummaging through the woodchips in front of my apartment, so it should be safe for now.


Monday, October 5, 2009

joey fatone.

well, as many of you may be aware from my last post and facebook photo album, this last weekend i was able to spend the weekend in san diego. twas a wonderful time. and i spent much of it thinking about how i could possibly work
into the post. mission accomplished.

and onto the recap.

rather than bother to post all of the photos on my blog, you can find the facebook album here. only a few select highlights will make it on the post in the interest of time.

to introduce, i'll give you a short timeline.

*4:30 (mountain west). thursday, october 1.
picked up by parents, niece, and three nephews in provo. we begin the drive.

(travel through utah, arizona, nevada, and california enjoying the view. most of the time)

*18:30 (pacific)
arrive at coronado island. waste time on the beach. enjoy life.

*10:00 (p) friday, october 2.
go to sea world. enjoy it very much as i have when i've attended it in the past.

*15:00 (p)
play the idea of being a marine biologist and dying my hair red so i can grow a moustache and be just like the guy who hosted the preshow for shamu. also sit front row for the show. very neat.

come back to hotel and enjoy more beach tomfoolery.

*9:00 (p) saturday, october 3.
the day devoted to the beach. gave my best effort in getting a huge sunburn on my back and had moderate success. enjoyed drinking seawater and playing in the waves as i always do.

*12:00 (p)
ate at anthony's which was simply delightful. very much enjoyed it. best fish i've had since england.

*13:30 (p)
purchased a pair of vans half-cabs with a member of kiss on the sides of each shoe. ten dollars new at a tent sale on base. thanked my lucky stars.

*15:00 (p)
more fun on the beach.

*10:00 (p) sunday, october 4.
more beach time, but less "action" and more "loitering" type activities. scavenged for shells and made a good haul. also sat around in the sand acting like i was about to get up. enjoyed most of the day doing such. a delightful final day.

*4:00 (p) monday, october 5.
leave the hotel and order hash browns from mcdonalds. we're on the way home.

*6:00 (mw)
stop at burger kind for breakfast, but it's closed until seven. the time zones have changed and what was 6:55 a few minutes prior became 6:15 across the state line.

(read, make bracelets, watch dvds with kids)

*18:00 (mw)
return to provo. get dropped off by parents, niece, and three nephews. grab my junk, throw it in apartment, and go to the apartment complex office to sort out rent.

*19:10 (mw)
go on campus and update facebook and write this post.


twas a wonderful time. i enjoyed it very much and thank my parents for letting me tag along. and if you missed it the first time, and really wanted wanted to see the photos i was too lazy to post here, here's the link. and yes, i know i said i'd post a few particular ones here and didn't. i'm sorry, i really need to get going.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

justin timberlake.

i couldn't tell you why, but i really wanted to title this post "justin timberlake." probably for no real reason other than the novelty of naming a blog post after a member of n*sync. but hopefully by explaining myself, i'm...


with the explanation out of the way, the rest of this waste of time can continue.
for the unaware, last weekend--wait, two weekends ago--i fell ill. i had the pleasure of going to the health center, wearing a biohazard mask, and having a six inch q-tip shoved far enough up my nose that my brain started pushing back. just before the doctor put the thing in, she handed me a tissue and said, "when i do this, your eyes are going to run like crazy and your nose will probably do the same." and indeed it did. as soon as it entered my right nostril my left retaliated, and yes, the tissue was very much appreciated.

following the interrogation, i got to take the swab to the lab, wait for results, and then be told they weren't really sure what i had. but don't worry, they were still confident enough in my illness that they banned me from campus for the next four days. those four days were thursday, friday, and the weekend. so two days of no classes and then no church. made for an interesting weekend.

when i'd reccuperated, i returned to find my midterms happily waiting for me; staring into my eyes with they're own and grinning sadistically. all things considered, they went alright. because i was having to play catch up and study for all of them at the same time i didn't exactly ace them, but as i knew that was coming, i planned ahead and things should still be able to work out fine in the long run.

this weekend, though, i'm missing class for a weekend by the sea rather than a weekend with the chills playing my roommate's wii. that's a welcome difference. also, the drive to san diego should supply plenty of time to read text books and sleep, both of which i always insist i'll do when i'm sick. then i get sick, remember how apathetic i become towards everything, and wind up beating guitar hero.

so yeah, should be a good time. a pleasant break from things for a few days--at least in presence. if anybody would like me to bring you back some sand, just let me know. i'd be happy to. just get me a vial.

watch for my next post, "joey fatone." as i've named one post after a member of n*sync already, i think in naming the next likewise, i'd be...


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

dishonest clicking.

I have been asked what I mean by my word of honor. I will tell you. Place me behind prison walls-- ever so high, ever so thick, reaching ever so far into the ground - there is a possibility that in some way or another I will escape; but stand me on a floor and draw a chalk line around me and have me give my word of honor never to cross it. Can I get out of the Circle? No. Never! I would die first.
-Karl G. Maeser

for those reading that are unfamiliar with byu's ways and practices, this story will take a little bit of explanation. basically, when you sign apply to byu, and each year you continue, you agree to the byu honor code. it consists of a few basic groups of rules and standards you agree to uphold during your attendance at byu. some included are following church standards of dress and grooming, the word of wisdom (see link for explanation), and of course, academic honesty. it's nice because although i'd imagine you agree to something similar in regard to academic honesty no matter where you attend, at byu so much emphasis is placed on the students having agreed to follow the honor code that the professors are willing to trust the students with a lot more. and to be fair, i've rarely seen students abuse that trust.

on that note, i've a story to relate. if ever i have been tempted to cheat here at byu, i am no longer after this experience. in my biology class, we use iclickers throughout the lesson. they're basically little remotes that every student brings to class in order to answer multiple choice questions posed by the professor. each has an indavidual frequency making it possible for students to recieve credit for answering the question correctly, or answering at all. in this class, something like one point is given for a correct response and two points is given for just showing up to lecture and even being able to answer. well, twas a sad day for karl to look down upon, and a remarkably uncomfortable one for everyone else present. after one such question was posed by the professor, he asked for someone to explain his or her chosen answer. one eager student a few rows ahead of me raised his hand, and the professor called on him as he walked up the isle toward the student. the conversation between the teacher and student proceeded as follows, the professor speaking first.

"alright, go ahead and tell us why you chose c."
"well, i just saw..."
"wait. why do you have three iclickers sitting on your desk?"
"are you clicking in for students who aren't here?"
(mumbling) "um... no, i..."
"i think you are. that's academic dishonesty."

(a few second pause)

"well, i, i mean..."
"no, it is. you and i both know it."

(ten second pause. the entire class of around 150 students is dead quiet.)

"um... well... i..."
"alright. fine. well then. what was your answer?"
"um... it was... uh... i think..."
"fine. somebody else."

at this point, the entire class is so uncomfortable that we're all just scrambling to move on. thankfully some kid blurted out an answer vaguely connected to the given question and completely incorrect. everone was grateful for it as it made the professor correct him and move on. the kid, though, was able to have his crew of friends surrounding him pat him on the back and whisper (i'm assuming) assurances to him that the teacher was an idiot anyway.

yes, this was probably the most uncomfortable i've ever been in an academic situation. i felt bad for the kid, but at the end of the day, what was he thinking? honestly. you want to cheat, that's you're own choice. but to then be drawing attention to yourself, and then to be showing off the tools of your mischief, seriously. have a little tact.

as a follow up, after class the professor came up to the student and said, "i have the right to flunk you right now, take those i clickers and find their owners and flunk them all as well unless you did it without their permission." at this point i was too uncomfortable to stay and left before i found out if it was just a threat or something more. either way, that really must have ruined that kid's day.

so anyway, for as uncomfortable as i was simply being in the presence of this taking place, i can only imagine how i would feel being responsible. not like cheating was a huge temptation before, but it certainly isn't now. maybe professors should stage something like that at the beginning of each semester... use it as a learning tool.

anyway, there's the story. outside of this delightful experience, things are going well. nothing too exciting to report on, really, but things are going well. hope the same for all of you. so long.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

grilled cheese and get up kids.

to the both of you--
i just wanted to write and say that you two are the best, and i still enjoy your company. you may have been worried for a bit since we weren't hanging out as often. and outside of the usual "i don't have any bread" or "i forgot my headphones" excuses, yes, i wasn't seeing you as much.

grilled cheese, i've seen you nearly every day for the last week and a half, so you know that we're on good terms. it's refreshing to be able to see you again as often as i once did, though i know my double chin is probably even more excited to make a victorious return. because of that, we may have to limit our correspondence to tuesdays, thursdays, and special occasions. but still, you know i love you, right?

get up kids, you're probably a bit more upset with me. yes, i know that i swore i'd see your show tonight in salt lake no matter what, and now i'll most likely be cleaning toilets and listening to cds from eighth grade while you're performing. but i'll make good use of the chance to explain it to you when i find my live at granada cd. until then, just know that i have my reasons. some more practical and some more relate-able to your lyrics, but all ones justifying my absence as i'm sure you would agree. i'll buy you sodas next time you're in town.

but really, my two dear friends, i'm just happy to be friends again. you are wonderful and i do enjoy you ever so much. i apologize for neglecting our friendship for the past little while, but rest assured, such times are past. i'm glad i can finally see you clearly again without having anything taint the image. you and some more of my good friends were hard to be around for a bit, but all is well, all is well. i'm glad i can once again enjoy melodramatic lyrics and the taste of a bowling alley without reserve and be happy. forgive me.

best wishes, friends. i'll see you soon.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

when the bee stings.

sometimes we all just need a good pick me up. .we need something that will make us feel better. sometimes we need a few of our favorite things. like raindrops on roses, whiskers on kittens, and julie andrews.

forgive the youtube slide show format, but it's the best i could do. take a listen. you'll feel better even if you already feel great.

and for you more ambitious types--no need to be satisfied with watching.

and taking a lead from julie, i'll now be listing some of my favorite things. and remember, these are a few of my favorite things, not all of them. in no particular order:

*jonathan coulton*
a wonderfully lighthearted musician i recently discovered and have been enjoying ever since. this link will give you a good list of his stuff on youtube. give it a listen.

*grilled cheese*
need i say more? i think not. it's the best of a bowling alley and a sandwich thrown in the frying pan til golden brown and ready to make me jolly. double cool points when using the sandwich cutting device i received from my sister esa. it turns a one grilled cheese into two dinosaurs made of grilled cheese (as seen above).

*mark williams*
suffice it to say that if you don't know him, you wish you did. if you do know him, you know what i mean. and yes, the photo is of the aforementioned paper-mermaid burning.

*surf ninjas*
how can you not have this movie on your list? it's one of virtually everyone's favorite things. kwansu!

*human anatomy*
yes, it's going to devour me this fall, but as a subject it can't be beaten. it's always crazy when you look at your text book and then look at your forearm and see the same thing. just dissected. way too cool. chemistry would probably be the same if we could readily see on the molecular level. it's also cool that my body works. that's included in this one.

and anything that has to do with them. androids are not included in this. nor are cyborgs. and on a side note, i realize that this is sloppier than most of my posts. cry about it. i did.

*mario... and luigi.*
most anything involving these two is bound to be good. and really, the film is what sort of spoils things here, so most any game is a safe bet. the funny part is that we all look back and slam on super mario bros the movie, yet at the time, we all loved it. and some of us saw it more than once. more than three times, actually. and really, it should be noted that the film is included in this favorite thing just because of the nostalgia attached to it. and because it has john leguizamo.

*acoustic guitar*
fun to play, fun to hear, and bob dylan utilized it well enough to make the list of a few of my favorite things. something very soft and soothing about an acoustic that you can't get elsewhere. also wonderful to watch splinter in wrestling matches.

*h.g. wells*
i've recently gotten into audio books and wells has been a staple in the lineup. personal favorites include sleeper awakes and island of dr. moreau. definitely worth investigating.

you friends across the pond know that i can't leave england out. i love the place. i'm happy to be american, but i'm happy to have english friends. you know i love you, you crazy english folk.

and wales, i love you too. i put wales after england because i hoped that at least a few of you would be angry and assume i just lumped wales with england. you know i don't play favorites. just favorite things. and countries. oh how i miss doing sixty in a vauxhaul down your winding roads. i also miss some of the nicest, and at times, bewildering, people in the world. but mostly the nicest. and the people that were bewildering were still friendly... just more confusing than anything else.

and now, to end my list of favorite things, i give you one that's very dear to me.

though we really don't make a fuss about it, chairs really are just too good. really, chairs are wonderful. i love them to death, and hope to have many wonderful chairs before my days are done. and name them all.

now don't you feel better? i do. and it's a good thing to, because i was quite peeved. take care everybody, maybe next time i'll write something worth reading.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

minnie and me.

this post is devoted to my stout friend jimmy and my tall friend neil.


the three of us went to school together. i moved into the area where i lived out my teenage years the summer of 2000. i think. i met them in eighth grade when wee trace was floundering around morgan middle school. we were pretty tight friends throughout high school, and had many a zany experience. i wish i could tell you how these two met, but i wasn't around and i'm sure i'd get the story wrong. so oh well.

anyway, it's 1:19 in the morning and i'm looking for something to write about. then i realized that these guys are awesome. so i decided to post this.

the number of stories i've told that begin with either "one time, me and my friend jimmy..." or "i remember once that neil decided that..." i couldn't tell you, but they are many. and that's realizing that most of the best stories haven't been told. at least not out of the circle of the three of us. stories involving mama mia, throwing a tv from a roof (in a tweed suit), camping on the watertower, fake tattoos, pirates, oslo the dog, and lot and lots of sharpees. it's wonderful. you can't put a price on memories like that.

anyway, as of recent things have gotten really weird in a few very particular ways. so having a set of friends such as these is really nice. i worry at times about how a lot of my friendships are based on specific things. i.e., classes, mutual friends, team fortress... once those things are gone, so are those friends (or worse). it's always reassuring to know that these two weenies are always around to remind me with a noogie that i have some of the best weenies in the world as friends.

so, to you two losers whom i adore so much, thank you for being a friend, to quote the theme from golden girls. you guys are great. i (saying this at the expense of being sentimental) sincerely hope i've been as a good a friend to you guys as you've to me.

and to everybody else who read this, chances are you're very cool too. and i'm probably friends with you... probably.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

roast mutton.

i love 'the hobbit'. granted, i haven't read the full lord of the rings trilogy, but i think what i've read (the first of them all), i still prefer bilbo to frodo. at least his book. this is for lots of reasons, but i think a big part of it is the fact that in reading it i was introduced to all sorts of new creatures, peoples, ideas and so on and so forth that when i read the fellowship it just didn't have the same kick in the pants as found in 'there and back again.'

one chapter is still a favorite. i took the liberty of having this post share the name of the chapter, "roast mutton." the basic summary (starting some way into the chapter) is that bilbo
, being the master thief he is, is assigned by his accompanying dwarves to investigate a fire in the distance of the woods and either befriend the owners, or pilfer some food. he's to give warning if it's dangerous. he is caught by three trolls round the fire, but is able to escape. sadly, the dwarves without the warning have since gone in themselves and been captured and bound, one by one by the said trolls. as things seem worst, the trolls argue and contemplate the fate of the dwarves. all of them involve somehow eating them, but the big debate rests between boiling, bludgeoning to goo, roasting, etc., etc., etc.. luckily, they oafish trolls wind up debating on this point for so long and arguing about whatever they can, really, the morning comes, and with it the sun that turns three trolls to stone. but of course, the narrow escape has more than meets the eye. gandalf (our resident wizard) reveals himself and the fact that he had been perpetuating the arguement the whole time using voices to match each troll and irritating the others to buy time 'til morning. with the dwarves freed, and a key to their lair in hand, they continue on the journey. the trolls are turned to stone because they're each convinced the others are trying to undermine their own efforts or ideas (you could say things about the dwarves as well, but we'll save that for another over-analyitical post). so, lesson learned. when you insist on arguing, whether you're in the wrong or in the right, it usually leads to the same thing. being made of stone, and more generally speaking, stale mates and failure all around. and now to justify the title. the chapter's name comes from the troll's heard conversation prior to bilbo's being caught. a snippet from the text:

"Mutton yesterday, mutton today, and blimey, if it don't look like mutton again tomorrer," said one of the trolls.

"Never a blinking bit of manflesh have we had for long enough," said a second. "What the 'ell William was a-thinkin' of to bring us into these parts at all, beats me - and the drink runnin' short, what's more," he said jogging the elbow of William, who was taking a pull at his jug.

William choked. "Shut yer mouth!" he said as soon as he could. "Yer can't expect folk to stop here for ever just to be et by you and Bert. You've et a village and a half between yer, since we come down from the mountains. How much more d'yer want? And time's been up our way, when yer'd have said 'thank yer Bill' for a nice bit o' fat valley mutton like what this is." He took a big bite off a sheep's leg he was toasting, and wiped his lips on his sleeve.

they were fed up with roast mutton. they wanted to eat man flesh. is that so wrong? i don't think so. not for a troll, anyway. so i think to myself, "i enjoy roast mutton. but every night? i want to eat human," speaking allegorically. and then, pop! in comes a hobbit. a little thing like that would be easy enough and, though not a full person, better meat just the same. lose the hobbit. that's a shame. gain a bunch of dwarves. what a stroke of luck. spend the whole night bickering and turn to stone. that's the biggest shame. that they had what they wanted (moreso in a way, because trolls hate dwarves. eating them would be like an ultimate double whammy), and then it's gone. all gone. sometimes it's like i'm currently in one of two phases of the story. a) lost the hobbit, now hoping to have dwarves show up, or b) bickering until sunrise.

neither one is very satisfying, so at some point i'm hoping to move into the the-hobbit's-a-hero-let's-go-retrieve-the-trolls'-treasure portion of the story soon. that would be nice.

on a seperate note, but one that helped to pick the chapter's name, i grew out some infant mutton chops this weekend, which was very enjoyable. they only had just short of a week to grow, so nothing to impressive, but it was fun to have them while i did. from thursday to tuesday around 4:30 they were still around. but, then they had to come off. but they live on in spirit, and will continue to live on during weekends, holidays, and school breaks.

anyway, long winded, probably pretty boring, and completely normal for this blog; this post is done. thanks for reading, and i'll see you next time.

trace lund

Friday, August 21, 2009

revelations from the noggin (fairly boring).

thanks is owed to my friend lee-ann for her post on her blog (found here, if you're curious) that featured some tests she took from the noggin website. now, not only do i love taking pointless quizzes, and love noggin from my teenage days, but i'm also eager to find distractions from lots of things. you may have noticed that from the slur of posts over the last little bit in comparison to my usual consistency in posting. you could say i'm blog vomiting, or blomiting, these days. or maybe blogiting... i can't decide.

anyway, some results for you. and some commentary.

this one may or may not be accurate according to which element of my life you want to take in for examination. on the whole, i'll say that's fairly accurate.

this one isn't very accurate at all. i watch gossip girl when i'm the mood for just about anything, because i'm always in the mood for gossip girl.

key word: jolly. when you're jolly, you can get away with any flavor. you can also melt in pockets--don't read into that.

i didn't realize this test was just for girls until half way through, and it was only about six eight questions long, so i finished it anyway. besides, the semester is starting soon so i need all the tips i can get. sadly, this one didn't prove all that helpful as i already planned on wearing plenty of plaid.

and to end on a strong note, one more bit of evidence that i should have been born with a horn growing out of my forehead, just like i've been saying all along. we all knew that i had to end this slur of quizzes with one that was accurate.

well, that was a waste of time for both you and me. hopefully you didn't bother reading unless you were as bored or desperate for distraction as i was when i wrote it/was doing my research for it.

and by way of announcement, mark williams is very cool. we once lit a small, paper mermaid on fire. i'll have to tell that story another day. it was fun. i have pictures too.

so long, everybody.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

rabbit holes (radio version).

i'm in the middle of a weird phase right now.

life right now smacks a bit of when i wake up from sleeping in and can't quite make out what's really going on. even when i do, everything still feels just a little bit off. my daily schedule, hobbies, ability to do random things, none of them quite seem to fit the usual sound, smell, taste, feeling, or appearance of life. maybe it's from all the pizza.

i had a much bigger, much moodier post written up already. i wrote it over an hour's time whilst watching 'westworld.' (on a side note, that was a very good library find. i'm thoroughly enjoying it. it even stars yul brynner for all you 'king and i' types.) i was going to post it, but as i realized it was around three pages long, remarkably melodramatic, and really just annoying (as i would imagine to any reader), i decided to simply e-mail it to myself and forget posting it. maybe i would have thought otherwise if bothered reading it. it was too long and moody, though, so here you go instead. you should be glad i did so. all two of you that will read this.

basically, this post is just here so i can satisfy my need to post something after writing such a long post, and in turn not posting it. this is a sort of sad excuse for a post. like eating a cereal box because you threw away all of the cereal... yeah. just like that.

and now, since you bothered reading, here's part of the last post. it was the light hearted climax of an otherwise heavy handed piece of writing. it has an ironic history about it in context, but i'll leave it for now. if you're really that interested in it you can ask me, you two readers.

and i one day hope to smoke my awkwardness and everything else with it into extinction. figuratively, of course.

see you later. i promise the next post will be a bit more uppity and a little less johny raincloud.

Monday, August 17, 2009

pizza grease.

i can't remember i time i really had any sort of problem with food. this of course is assuming that you allow my typical diet to pass as, well, permissible. put it this way, i've never had a problem with having food be a comfort for me. however, as of late, my best friend seems to have been shasta and that pint size roman, little caesar. last week there was a four day period where i had pizza as my main meal each day. two days of little ceasars, one day of something provided for a church activity, and one day of a frozen generic brand pizza--and let the record show i should have just payed the extra seventy cents for the tombstone.

it's just an interesting situaiton. having never really experienced this before, i'm able to make observations as days go on that i wouldn't had this been a normal experience. the biggest one is that my head has undergone a sort of pavlov's dog idea. i go to get a pizza, and like the bell to the dog, this makes me happy. i'm actually salivating long before i even purchase the pizza, both literally and figuratively. it's interesting. i wouldn't go so far as to say that i'm drowning my sorrow in pizza grease, though by the amount i'm eating you might think so. i really should lay off the pepperoni pizza. it reminds me of the film super size me (which is worth a watch if you haven't seen it).

on the other side of my existence is science fiction. this has always been the case as noted in earlier blogs, but nowadays i find myself more and more drawn to it. over the last little while i've 'read' (via free audio-books) several science fiction novels that i would have been embarassed to mention my knowledge of before. classics such as 'deathworld' and 'this crowded earth' have for some reason taken on a remarkably interesting appeal in the last little while. and i'd feel ashamed of myself if i didn't at least mention planet of the apes. i'm currently renting and enjoying the series from the local library and hope to finish the whole thing before the semester begins.

anyway, it's just very interesting what sort of things take your interest and devotion when life's a little slow. it's easy to slip into apathy and let everything slide by without notice and dismiss it all as part of the same boring, unimportant occurence that is life at times. but somewhere between brent searching for taylor and nova getting killed, i started to realize that things are worth bothering about. yes, tired, stressed, and lots of other things, but things are there to look for. i'm starting a semester soon that really will be the first major bridge to cross on my trek to med school; i've free time to do things i haven't in a long while like playing guitar and writing stupid songs that really only appeal to me; i'm watching planet of the apes and listening to 1970's science fiction. you could ask for more, but there are things to be enjoyed already--don't get greedy.

so bring on the grease. tomorrow is another wonderful day and one day closer to a bright future.
also one day closer to the rise of apes, and i'll eat to that.