Thursday, October 29, 2009

Follow up from yesterday's post.

This was my first order of business this morning. This year, I went from being a renter with a carport to a homeowner without one. Life finds a way of demoting you when promoted.

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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Monday, October 26, 2009

The merits of a camera phone

When I work, I occasionally have to pee. It's natural. Today, on the way back to my desk, I noticed the janitorial cart laden with what one would assume are janitorial supplies. Upon closer inspection, I saw that an ordinary arsenal would not suffice for the wonderful CP+B cleaning lady.

Behold, the hot sauce.

I had never had a camera phone until recently. I now see the important need. This blog, if not the world, is a better place for them.

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Friday, October 23, 2009

wow. I'm geeky, but this is just ballzy.

While it's now been flagged for removal, Gothamist managed to capture the text of a New York Craigslist ad that one can safely say is anything but tasteful. The text reads as follows:

"Need an amputee to complete my Halloween costume (Brooklyn)...So this might seem strange and really offensive to some but hopefully someone will reply. I have always loved the scene in Empire Strikes Back where Chewbacca has to carry around a half reconstructed C3PO in a backpack because he hasn't reattached his lower body yet. For Halloween I would love to dress up like this. I am big enough and strong enough to both pull off the Chewbacca look and to carry around a lot of weight for the night. So basically I am looking for a double amputee (someone missing both legs--preferably at the hip) to accompany me as C3PO for the evening. We should meet ahead of time so that we can work out the backpack/harness system. There are a few parties that I want to hit and I think we will be the hit of any event we attend. Anyone up for this?"

(via agency spy)

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Annie's hard knock life

Friday a.m.

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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

colors

The giving tree outside my front door.

Sent from my Windows® phone

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Monday, October 19, 2009

Sorry for unconvinced

Working late. Just called in a take out order from the Nepalese/Tibeten/Indian restaurant around the corner. I haven't tried their food yet, so I'm looking forward to it. I found myself wondering if they were really authentic when i found this bit of assurance on their website:

Our Online Order System is not functioning Property, Please call Restaurant for Order. We are very sorry for unconvinced.

I'm convinced their online ordering system is down. No need to apologize. Funny, thanks to the typo, I'm even convinced they're the real deal. Looking forward to dinner.

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Sunday, October 18, 2009

Me time.

Took an overnighter by myself up in the Indian Peaks Wildness. The trail was mostly snow and ice. Bagged Arapahoe Pass and camped up amongst the marmots where nobody else was stupid enough to have a slumber party with the wind. But I planned for the chill, geared up and got in some great solo therapy. You can come next time. I won't be so selfish in the future. Or at least I won't tell you about it.

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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

manhandle your verbs


I started day dreaming, as I often do. I made a list. List #1.

I read it and crashed my pity part by copying and pasting the list and changing the verbs in the new one. I also ended up adding one more point as the dreaming continued and evolved.

I noticed the difference between #1 and #2 and thought of revising the verbs again. Behold, list #3.

I feel better. Now I just have to work at this stuff. It's on me.

Try this sometime.

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List #1

I wish I were a better writer. A really good, captivating, clear written communicator.

I wish I could take public transportation or ride my bike to work without extending my one-way commute by an almost an hour.

I wish I had a more natural singing voice. Not a “prettier” or more professional voice. Just more naturally, subconsciously appealing.

I wish I could afford to record a full-length album of quality and depth that I hear in my head.

I wish I could take multi-day backpacking trips into the backcountry a lot more than I have in the last 4 years, which is embarrassing to admit totals ZERO times.

I wish I had the start up and guts to start my own business and partner with / hire terrific people to share it with.

I wish I could afford the kitchen, tools, food and time to cook whatever I want, however I want.

List #2

I hope to become a better writer. A really good, captivating, clear written communicator.

I hope to be able to take public transportation or ride my bike to work without extending my one-way commute by an almost an hour.

I hope to cultivate a more natural singing voice. Not a “prettier” or more professional voice. Just more naturally, subconsciously appealing.

I hope to someday be able to (afford to) record a full-length album of quality and depth that I hear in my head.

I hope to take multi-day backpacking trips into the backcountry a lot more than I have in the last 4 years, which is embarrassing to admit totals ZERO times.

I hope to start my own business someday and partner with / hire terrific people to share it with.

I hope to be able to someday afford the kitchen, tools, food and time to cook whatever I want, however I want.

I hope to have cool kids that will want to do cool things with me.

List #3

I plan to become a better writer. A really good, captivating, clear written communicator.

I plan to someday be able to take public transportation or ride my bike to work without extending my one-way commute by an almost an hour.

I’m going to work on cultivating a more natural singing voice. Not a “prettier” or more professional voice. Just more naturally, subconsciously appealing.

I plan to someday record a full-length album of quality and depth that I hear in my head.

I will take multi-day backpacking trips into the backcountry a lot more than I have in the last 4 years, which is embarrassing to admit totals ZERO times.

I plan to start my own business someday and partner with / hire terrific people to share it with.

I will someday be able to afford the kitchen, tools, food and time to cook whatever I want, however I want.

I hope to have cool kids that will want to do cool things with me. (This one is still partially out of my hands. Hope’s a good thing.)

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Friday, October 9, 2009

wax on wax off

[Editor’s note. This post is an annoying insight into how my brain works. I’m constantly going off on tangents in an effort to go back and forth between two sides of a hypothetical argument attempting to fill in holes in logic. If I’m bi-polar, at least I’m a somewhat open-minded schizo.

“What luck for rulers that men don’t think.” – Adolf Hitler]

“It's nice when somebody tells you about their uncle. Especially when they start out telling you about their father's farm and then all of a sudden get more interested in their uncle. I mean it's dirty to keep yelling 'Digression!' at him when he's all nice and excited. I don't know. It's hard to explain… What I mean is, lots of time you don't know what interests you most till you start talking about something that doesn't interest you most. I mean you can't help it sometimes. What I think is, you're supposed to leave somebody alone if he's at least being interesting and he's getting all excited about something. I like it when somebody gets excited about something. It's nice.” – Holden Caulfield]

I remember when I couldn’t type worth crap as a kid, and I couldn’t think of a reason why I would need to type fast. Now I can’t imagine a world where it takes me an hour to draft an email with my two index fingers.

I remember a 6th grade typing class that first forced me to become familiar with where all the letters were on a keyboard. A, S, D, F, J, K, L,;. I wonder if you have similar memories of wondering why the crap they weren’t in a logical order. Oh, I dunno’, maybe a, b, c, d, e, f and so forth. Just a thought.

How young and stupid I was.

Yet, at the same time, My steepest learning curve in typing didn’t come from typing class or the Mavis Beacon software my parents made us use at home for a while. I learned to type from typing emails to people I wanted to type emails. And chatting online with friends. The internet as we know it was brand new. This was fun.

I remember when the free AOL disks came in the mail. Our home internet connection was reliant on the free dial-up service that would periodically land in our mail box. (The literal, non-cyber kind. You’ve got (snail) mail!) AOL email and AOL instant messenger taught me to type. Even if it wasn’t – and still isn’t – with perfect form, it fit the function. All’s well that ends well.

Which gets me thinking about the general, life-serving principle behind this relatively simple life experience. (Insert Jaime’s groan here. She wonders why I insist on identifying and applying the “principle” behind everything I observe. I wonder too. It’s involuntary, and I’m seeking help in the form of more cerebral gelatinizing boob tube time.) We learn from real life application much quicker than from theory and rehearsal. Those who are thrown in the deep end either learn to swim or drown. (There are those who realize they can simply float and survive, but that’s an entirely different principle and a different post.)

I’m a married adult and my wife works in child care and childhood education. So many of my Jaime-groan-inducing-life-principle brainstorms lead to me think about how I would apply this life principle to helping raise a kid. Consider. I’ll let you brainstorm your own practical applications of this theory and end* with a question to spur more thought:

How often do we let theory and rehearsal suck up valuable life-living time that could otherwise serve as practical real life education and experience?

I can think of one solid counter-argument: those without a solid foundation of theory and best practices before jumping into application will almost inevitably make a habit out of doing things the wrong way. They will essentially be practicing mistakes, building inefficient techniques into their muscle memory or brain pathways, which is very difficult to correct. I sometimes cringe when I see how my 15 year old brother types, spells and chooses to express himself on facebook and email. These are the “kids these days” moments when I feel oldest.

Counter-counter argument: who are you to tell me that it’s wrong or that I need “correcting?” The established system is built upon its own assumption of superiority from nothing more than the fact that it’s own professors and evangelists agree and support that notion.

Which brings me back to the discussion of efficiency. If the theory and rehearsal are there to teach you first and foremost how to most efficiently execute superior results, that is hard to fight against. Leave it up to the renegade deep end swimmer to revolutionize the system when he stumbles upon a more efficient and more superior method. At that point will the university gather in the stadium to observe the new findings and hail their new dean.

And the cycle starts again.

I’ve gotten nowhere.

I graduated with my bachelor's degree in 6 semesters (ca. 3 years) in part because the university rewarded me for using my summers and time off to gain practicum and internship (aka “real world”) experience relating to my studies from the classrooms of south eastern Idaho, which is about as far from the real world as American higher education gets.

Here I am, three years after graduating, degree from the system in hand (or in a box somewhere in a closet, actually), three years into one of the most coveted and competitive jobs in my chosen field of study: advertising account management.

Maybe that’s the key. This is not a fight between black and white. The answer is in the beautiful grey. Be sure to insert a healthy amount of real world application fighting for your life in the deep end of the pool while you study the theory and principles of the masters that came before you. Just make sure you don’t wait too long to get a little wet. Like when the Ralph Machia was growing weary of all the slave-labor “training” until he deflected Mr. Miyagi’s blows in a spur of the moment practical application of all his seemingly useless fence painting, deck sanding and car waxing theory.

A,s,d,f,j,k,l,;, wax on, wax off. Study the masters and what they know, then get out there and imitate and innovate.

I think I’ve landed somewhere. Thanks for bearing with me.

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*so much for being concise.

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