Friday, July 31, 2009

facing books and rotcen meat.

hello again. this post is meant as an explanation as well as a brief update. as you may have noted from other sources, i have for the time being, closed (or soon will) my facebook account. i'll be taking a sabbatical for a yet undecided period of time. it may last until the beginning of the new fall semester, the end of it, perhaps the end of march 2010, or maybe it will never be opened again. the last is doubtful, but possible just the same.

there are several reasons for this, but the only one
i'll mention for now is the fact that i've decided to enroll in the air force rotc program here at byu. this normally wouldn't have much of an effect (at least the effect it does now) because it's intended to be done over a time span that would grant two years of preparation before your fate is decided by a board as to whether or not you'll be endorsed as a pre-med and eventual med school student (which is my objective). but i, being a late bloomer, have started later than most, and as a result, must take all of the required courses in one semester, ace my classes, up my personal fitness level substantially, get to know my commanding officers in six months to make up for a year and a half, and prepare like mad for the entry exams (i'll only have one shot at them before i'm reviewed) before the end of fall semester. and facebook is problematic in the amount of time i use it. and for those of you who may whine at this, take comfort in knowing that facebook isn't the only thing on the chopping block.

so, what remains to be done before fall's beginning is complete the application, study for the entrance exam, as well as prepare for the semester ahead by beginning on my chem/anatomy studies to ensure my
gpa is raised. likewise raising my personal fitness to meet and hopefully exceed standards set by my peers. which makes me wish to note that if there is one thing that i'm not looking forward to with the program, it's being ranked against my peers. i know it's how things work in the world, but it's still not as pleasant to realize your buddy from class and so on is potentially your reason you didn't get in, or that you're likewise his reason. but oh well, if i don't sabotage anyone's plans or efforts i can't say i'll have a heavy conscience if i proceed while they do not. anyway, that's the big reason. if you're reading this, chances are you already have another way to contact me. if not, check my profile and you'll find a link to my e-mail address. feel free to use it.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

ripping off jfk.

a friendly hello to you all. this post is one of these "what's going on in my life" posts, so feel free to skip it if you'd rather not bother reading it. no offense taken.

so, as some readers may know, over the last year or so i've begun to fulfill pre-requisites for applying to med school. if you haven't spoken to me in a while about anything pertaining to education, you probably are a bit lost. shortly put, some sort of fundamental change occurred in which my goals drastically altered from seeking to be a librarian or dramaturg to setting my sights on psychology--which is my current major--and then panning to the right to land on medicine. it's pretty crazy. if you want to know anything about this, just look up anything with the tag of "chemistry" or "anatomy" and it should fill you in.

moving along, i recently spoke with a coworker who's prepping to go to dental school about chemistry and the requirements for schooling in just about any medicinal discipline. it turns out that if you tack one three credit hour course to my load, i'll have a chemistry minor. so what does this mean? i'm now registered as in process of obtaining a chem minor. now, i'm only beginning this path. and if any of you have been around this blog for a while, you'll note i really did hate the subject as of winter semester. however, i'm determined to make this happen. for one reason, if i bother taking all these classes and then not get into med school, i'll make blasted sure that i get something for all the effort. for the second, and the far more noble reason, we'll go to Former President John F. Kennedy as he spoke on putting a man on the moon.

"We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not only because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too."
(find the full text here)

in context, it may be something like this for me.

"i choose to minor in chemistry. i choose to minor in chemistry before i graduate and complete all my other required courses not because they are enjoyable, but because they are a bit of a pain (but good for me), because doing so will prove to myself that i pummeled and have gained rule over this subject and others, make me be more productive and spend less time on facebook to better utilize my time and effort, because i'm going to build up the guts and patience to do it, because getting into med school is a challenge i am willing to accept, will need to postpone for now but will begin preparing for, and which i intend to absolutely obliterate, leaving a trail of brilliance in my wake. a goal i intend to achieve, and others too."

and thus my further pilgrimage to academic nerdery continues. wish me luck, i'll need it. hope you're all doing wonderful. i'll try to post again soon. like always. so it might be a while.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

i <3 chicken.

so, i try to keep my posts interesting, even if (in my mind) that means having to give some text to some otherwise only mildly interesting pictures. such is the case today. i'll be sharing an introduction to the photos, and then a story that many of you have probably heard before already, and then stop writing so i can begin thinking about all the things i need to put in the second part of my washington dc report, which i never actually did like i promised.

last night autumn, brad and i found ourselves in my apartment. and none of us had eaten yet, none of us wanted to go to get something to eat, and so brad had the idea to make a broccoli and chicken casserole. we agreed this would be the best course of action and began assembling ingredients.

being a chicken casserole, it of course was a good time to put some of the chicken breasts that autumn had purchased while ago to use. long story short, i wound up being the one to cut up the chicken, and during my chopping, the still-frozen core of her chicken made what was going to be delicious adorable!

in case you can't tell due to the quality of my camera-phone photo, that's a chicken breast that's formed a darling little heart. sorry if the color of the chicken blends with the color of my fleshy palms. i should have taken one with it on the carpet maybe.

it was very cute. i was a bit saddened as i had to go on to cut up this charming heart rather than being able to put it in a scrapbook, but as i hadn't paid for it, it wasn't really my choice. i chopped it into 2"ish sized pieces and threw it to the frying pan in preparation for its being in the casserole. still, it taught me something. love is everywhere. you just need to pull apart the right layers to see it. and possibly have part of it still frozen to hold the pieces together.

brad also studied a bit.

and now on to the story. it may come off as a bit crass, so my apologies if you've rather sensitive. i hesitate to share it just a bit, but you can guess by the subject matter what the punchline has to do with this post.

it was valentines day on my mission in england. i had the two elders i was working with, and as i was going to go home soon (and as no one wanted to talk to us on this oh so romantic evening) i offered to buy the fellows dinner. we went to the local kebab shop. the owner was a friendly turkish man who was clearly a bit surprised to have three guys in dress suits coming into his shop on valentines night. we spoke a bit, and then ordered. i'll just give you the straight dialogue between him and the three of us.

"what would you like, boys?"

"um, i'd like a doner kebab, please."

"alright. and you?"

"same for me with a coke."

"and you?"

"um... can i get a chicken kebab?"

"of course! good choice. chicken is a good valentine. very big breasts."

and we all laughed. like i said, a bit crass, but it was so hilarious and vaguely related to this post as a whole that i thought i'd share it. hopefully you're not offended.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

reacquainting myself with the floating bum.

as i'm sure you're all well aware, times ain't the easiest when it comes to finding work. whether it's for full time skilled labor or part-time grunt work, jobs are competitive. bearing this in mind, i've had the great fortune of being able to find another job. so to speak. for the unaware, i currently work at the benson science building on byu campus doing early morning (4:30 am) custodial work, and have been since last november. it pays well enough for what it is and has been great for a job both during school and break. the only disadvantage (outside of the occasional disgusting happening) is that the hours are limited to 17.5 a week. that means that while it pays well enough, it still lands short of a fulltime job. which is really what i would hope for during a break where i have no school. so i've been looking for a second job for the summer. and luckily, i actually found one, or rather, rediscovered one.

the job i worked before the benson building (and the job where i met my dear girlfriend) was at byu laundry. i pressed coats and pants and drove a laundry truck for about six months when i first came back to the university. when i left, my boss said if i was interested in a job again to give him a call. i did, and he didn't have any spots available until recently. but since he had one as of last week, i finally got the second job i'd been looking for.

it's interesting coming back to a job after you've been gone for over half a year. especially a job like the laundry. it's a great place, but much of the work is fairly monotonous. for instance, my past job (and now current job) was/is pressing coats and jackets at a little station for the duration of the shift. not the most thrilling business. that's not the reason i left the laundry, but i must confess it may have had some influence. now, though, i've come back and see people who have been there since before i started last summer still at the presses. i have to wonder how they can bear it. honestly, it's sort of like making xerox copies of a weirdly shaped papers one after another for hours without ever speaking to anybody or moving. it's practically a varicose vein farm. because i'm a fidget, i can't stand at the same spot that long so in the few seconds that the machine is on autopilot i take the chance to bounce on my toes, find an excuse to walk a bit (drinks of water are the most common), or simply jump in place a few times. but these other people who simply twist their waists every few minutes have me baffled.

personally, i've always been more partial for pressing jackets. it's what i started on. also, you put the jacket on a sort of wire-and-cloth mannequin rather than...

the floating bum.
i thought i was rid of this abomination when i left the laundry in november, but my dismissal was premature and even rash in retrospect. it would seem fate has intertwined our destinies. either way, there are always more pants to press than jackets, so when one of the pants presses are open i get to head over. in case you're curious, this machine basically take the pants and floods them with steam so they balloon up to their max size and eliminate any small wrinkles and also reinforce pleats (as seen in the photo). then it's our job to take them to the press itself and put the crease of the pants in place and eliminate any stray wrinkles. and to be fair, from this angle, i guess it's more accurately titled "the floating crotch." that sounds a bit crass, though, doesn't it?

anyway, this means a bit more income for yours truly which is a good thing after half a summer of searching for some extra cash flow. at least i have an mp3 player now. autumn is being kind enough to loan me hers (amongst other acts of kindness--so thanks to her), and i'm only working three hour shifts. how in the world i use to work four hours without any music or radio theater to fill my skull is beyond me. but i see other people doing it, so i guess it remains possible. to be fair though, these are the same people who'll be getting varicose veins.

so there.

p.s.--yes, i know i neglected part two of my washington dc adventure. i apologize. i totally forgot and will work on getting it posted soon. forgive me, williams.