Monday, December 19, 2011

What if hippies ruled the world?

Just because they are smelly and lazy and often stoned hippies get a pretty bad rap.  I think that is unfair.  Please join me on this psychedelic, mind-expanding, journey through the exciting journey of  What if hippies ruled the world!

It should be known that this is not just theoretical.  If the world were ruled by a hippie oligarchy this is what it would be like.  Just trust me.

First of all there would be no more hand-shaking.  This would be our form of greeting.  Sticking your tongue out would be like when we hug in our universe, and not would be like when we just shake hands.  Lip kissing will stay the same (that is a universal constant, like gravity and the trendy look of flannel.)

Next, this is what the American flag would look like.  Isn't it neat?!  You might think that is because hippies love tie dye, and obviously that is true, but that is not why.  It is because hippies do not understand the night sky and are therefore frightened by stars.  But tie dye is still fun!

Music would be affected dramatically.  

This would count as real music

So would this (I'm not sure what this is, but it counts as music)

Also, Janis Joplin and Jimmy Buffet would be like Tupac and Biggie Smalls in this universe except for they would not kill each other.  Instead they would attempt to contaminate one another's supply of hemp (the cotton of hippies) until they realized that this horrible east-coast/west-coast rivalry was dividing the market for crappy music and so they reconcile and become fantastically wealthy.  Interestingly enough, in both this universe and ours Kanye West can become successful only after this happens (that's right, nothing keeps him down).

Continuing in the vein of music... Music is the currency in this world.  The base for establishing the value of music as currency is one verse of 12 bar blues is worth one ounce of tofu.  Value is not determined by the quality of the music (people like Janis Joplin....quality clearly means nothing).  Rather, value is determined by the length of a song.  A nine hour festival can buy a three bedroom house.  Also, there are no houses, people live in vans, teepees, lean-tos, and kivas.  

Finally, this is a picture of an Olympic gold medalist.  Clearly, the Olympians get a lot of girls.

There is a good chance there will be more to come in this vein, this was really fun to write!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Oh memories!

This has been a chaotic period in my life.  But I've had the chance to reflect on sweet memories of life and make a few new ones along the way.  Inspiration for the blog post comes from a favorite song of mine lately, there is no video for it so just read along I guess....

It is interesting what we choose to remember.  The smell of fresh rain in the forest always reminds me of summers spent in Weber canyon at my grandparents' cabins, while the smell of Tide detergent will always make me think of the 3 weeks I spent in the MTC.  The song Hotel California by The Eagles will always remind me of when I caught the bug for playing live music at the Keno Junior High talent show.   Burning my hands on the steering wheel will always bring back the memories of learning to drive when I was in High School.

If you didn't already know, I am a pretty positive person.  I like to think that people are generally good and so most of my memories are good.  This month I have been trying to make sure that is still what I do and who I am.  There have been moments when I could only remember the worst of the worst, but no more!  Just like the song posted above said I have felt my love growing cold with the seasons, but unlike the song I will always have me memories of good times, of our adventures.  Life has been far too good to me to focus of the few days of sadness when I've been given two decades of joy!  I hope some of you will recognize sharing some of the below memories with me, if you do recognize them just know that you are someone who helped me become who I am today!

*Soul Skaters
*Snow Tunnels in the backyard
*Slot cars
*"That Thing You Do"
*The Police on electric drums
*drum duets
*Jazz Choir
*One Acts
*Chemistry Challenge team
*Rain when Jocey was born
*Morning Scripture study
*Pushups in the MTC
*Snow balls in Pocatello
*E-Brakes in Ammon
*Hillary Weeks in the van
*Rollor blading
*3 shooting stars
*Sammy's Rexburg
*Royal Bliss
*Hard Rock Cafe San Diego
*Red Pickup Trucks
*Barro's Pizza on a rainy day
*Kanye West's Graduation album in a Prius
*Sonic Assault
*Brimhall Jazz Band
*Tech Decks
*"Let it Rain"
*"How Firm a Foundation"
*Jimmy Eat World
*Pat Benatar
*Fake poop
*The Simpsons and Jeopardy
*Biking Hills in Pocatello
*the drive between Challis and Salmon
*Cows on the highway
*Sky Box, for the bragging rights
*22.3 or 22.4?
*Loud in the basement
*Dad's angry eyes
*Battle of the Bands
*Billboard Antics
*Park City in the summer
*Berkley, CA
*Brighton for spring break
*Rotary Speech Contest

Obviously, this could not be an all inclusive list, if anyone actually makes it to the end it would be so cool if you could add fun memories of us together in the comments for this post!

I love you all!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

What I thought I knew and what I've learned

It is hard to believe it, but one month ago I was engaged to be married to the girl of my dreams.  I've decided I can't dwell on what might have been, that would make this an exceptionally boring blog post! Rather I'd like to share what I feel like I have learned through all of this craziness and I hope that some of it will help the nine people who will actually read this.  Ready? ok let's go....

First of all, I have learned that I cannot always control whether or not the situation I am in is what will bring me the greatest measure of peace, but that it is not the situation I am in that will ultimately bring peace, but the way I choose to react to it.  This is the first of many things I have always intellectually known, but that I have never had to apply in my life until very recently.  It is amazing to me the power the Lord gives each of us to decide to have a positive attitude and to learn in every situation in which we are placed; it is not always easy, but it is always the path that will lead to the greatest good.  I keep remembering what a Sister in my mission once said, she encouraged a congregation of people to "follow the peace." I have come to learn that that does not mean I can always be in a peaceful situation, but that in every situation I have the opportunity to follow the Prince of Peace who I worship with all my heart.

The next important thing I thought I always knew and now have discovered I really do is that I have amazing friends.  God has put some the best people in the world into my life and they will never understand the incredible, salvific influence they have had on my life.  In this category I include my current roommates, my dear friends from the mission who have always inspired me to be the very best, my dear pre-mission friends from high school who have allowed me to grow with them, and of course the best family a person could ever have.  In particular in this crazy circumstance I have gained an appreciation for my dear parents who have supported me in all of my dreams and pursuits and who continue to trust me to learn from all that I have been given.  Chances are if you took the time to read this you are one of those people, so thank you!

The final and most important lesson I have learned from all of this is the incredible power forgiveness has to heal and lift.  I have been painted as vile and evil (I also have fallen in love with palindromes) by people who meant a lot to me and it has been difficult for me to let that go, but as I have, I have found such a tremendous feeling of comfort and empowerment to move forward with faith in the love of Christ.  I have preached the doctrine of forgiveness on countless occasion, and I've always wondered why I have been so drawn to that principle until this month when I have finally had a need to really apply it in my everyday living.  I'm so glad that I have spent time studying opposition and forgiveness, without it I don't know where I would be.  The freedom and release that comes is real, I have experienced it and for that I will always be grateful!

Sorry this wasn't very funny and I don't blame anyone for not reading the whole thing, but it feels so good to write it all down.


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Several things I can't stand

So, most people who actually read this (both of you...) probably are in for no surprise.  However, I don't think that there has ever been one single location to turn to in order to learn how to behave around me. This is by no means an exhaustive list, however its a good start.  I hope that the universe now understands that this post puts you on notice, ignorance is no longer a valid defense.  These are my Pet-Peeves....

First: Misspelled words in serious facebook status updates.
I am currently on the fence about people posting serious things on facebook.  It seems super weird to me to be looking at my newsfeed and read about someone's morning habits, how much someone loves milk and cookies, and how sad someone is because this is the anniversary of their grandparents death.  One of those things is not like the other, but if facebook really is a place for release I suppose it is ok. HOWEVER, there is no excuse for someone trying to be deep and pensive while showing they don't know the difference between "effect" and "affect" or "access" and "excess" or "loaner" and "loner."  If you have a below 7th grade reading level you are not allowed to pretend like you have any thoughts deeper than "goin to the gym with my boy [insert childish nickname here] can't wait for my cool down protien shake!" dunce!

Second: Guys (as opposed to Gentlemen)
There is nothing wrong with wearing a short pant, or a t-shirt from time to time.  However, if you are going out for an evening it is time to put on a slack--or at least a jean--and a shirt with a rib or a collar, some product for the hair, and a shoe that covers the feet.  In addition, Church is a place for a white shirt and tie, shoes match belt, socks match slacks, and for goodness sake keep brown and black away from each other!  On a Saturday afternoon, really the only thing that is off limits is not wearing a shirt.  Swimming is the exception, but walking around, or watching t.v. can be done just fine with a shirt on.  Basic rule of thumb: just look like you have some amount of respect for yourself.
Good way to know if you are a guy or a gentleman: Jimmy Buffet or Frank Sinatra?

Third: People who rock out to acoustic music
It is always fun to see a singer/songwriter strip down their song in an intimate performance or as a break in the middle of a set.  In fact, I never liked Nirvana until I heard their acoustic cover of David Bowie's The Man Who Sold the World.  But I would never bang my head to a song that a grunge band does with a cello! I can't think of many things more ridiculous than people calling a concert with no drum set or distorted guitar a rock show.  Some of the best examples of bands that people inappropriately rock out to are Jack Johnson and Coldplay.  Sorry fellas, but your music is boring and does not count as rock and roll.  Simply put, if anyone but the drummer is sitting down on stage the only proper response is quietly listening and moderate hand-clapping.

So, to anyone who will be around me for the rest of my life, keep these things in mind, or be prepared to be mocked!


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Po-Po

This post is a super-brag on my amazing luck, I know it, and now so do you.

So I have been pulled over a total of one (1) time(s).  I was 16 years old and I was driving home very late at night from a midnight premier (more to come about my distaste of midnight premiers....).  I was also eating a taco, I was also turning left, I also drove a manual transmission.  Needless to say, I was driving erratically.  The cops got me right outside my house and basically just checked my breath, and let me go.  (Lucky me I had really good mints that masked the Keystone......kidding.)

Fast forward past several red lights run, speeding to shows, and a couple illegal U-turns on the freeway to yesterday.  As I was making my way toward Layton, UT for a wonderful lunch date with a very special girl I zoned out through an intersection on BYU campus.  I looked up at the traffic signal just as I passed underneath the red beacon, inviting me to be a law abiding citizen just a little too late.

I felt terrible about that incident, but I guess not bad enough to drive 55 on the freeway.  As I was speeding my way up I-15 I came to the top of the crest of a hill and my eyes met the eyes of a motorcycle cop with his radar gun pointed right at my car.  I prepared to move over to the right and meet my doom until, just as I passed the cop he pointed his gloved finger right at me and in the clearest inaudible language I'd ever heard (haha you can't hear inaudible, but that is really what it felt like...) he mouthed "YOU, SLOW DOWN!"  and then waved me on.  Success!!!

Moral of the story--and this may sound a little cliche, and for that I apologize--the universe may, in fact, revolve around me...... Just sayin.....      

Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Romantic In Me.

I would consider a hopeless romantic to be one who is overly concerned with the romances all around them, but who never takes the time to nurture their own.  There is, of course, a much healthier way of viewing the world, specifically the world of love.  That is being a Hopeful Romantic.  A hopeful romantic can still get caught up in all of the relationships around him/herself, but also wants and works for the same. 

With the help of a new (but great) friend I was able to determine, with her, that I am certainly a hopeful romantic.  One of my favorite movies is One Fine Day because I want to be as in love as George Clooney is with Michelle Pfeiffer; I am always dreaming of finding my own Liz Lemon or Pam Beasley; my favorite song is and 8 minute slow jam about the infatuation phase called “Crush”.  I certainly love the idea of love!

However, as fun as it is to live through these exalted views of a dream-girl, I want nothing more than true love in my own life.  As horrifying as it seems to me, I can’t wait to have a wife with whom I can enjoy the best life has to offer, and then to bring kids into that love affair would only add to the experiences of existence.

So, what is the point of this?  Well, hopefully all the links in this post made people love some of the same things I love, that would make the world a better place (; but also, I hope that we can all just be a little more hopeful in our romances.  I have total trust that I will get to have an even better romance than anything Shakespeare ever thought up because mine will not be weak-minded and hopeless, but the love of a Hopeful Romantic.    

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Delusions of Grandeur

So the past several weeks have been overwhelmingly amazing.  My band has somehow been able to pretend that we are a much bigger deal than we really are.  Last week we played shows with bands like Anarbor, Valencia, and Hello-Goodbye, as well as making a special trip to San Diego, California to play at the world famous Hard Rock Cafe (by the way we didn't even have to pay for gas!)  We have had people scream as we took the stage, ask to take pictures with us, and I have autographed several drumsticks and cds.  It has kind of been a dream come true!

However, a much more important dream came true during our sound check at the aforementioned Hard Rock Cafe.  The sound guy, who is used to setting up monitors and drum mics for much more famous people than us, was treating us like we were John, George, Paul, and Ringo.  He'd never heard of The Lovecapades because neither has anyone else, but he thought it was just because he still thought Aerosmith was cutting edge.  We had no demands; in fact, just looking at the sound system that carry our music through the sparsely attended show was enough for us to lose our minds with excitement.

As we were checking levels through our monitors the sound guy wanted to ensure that we each had a perfect mix so that we could perform to the best of our abilities (not realizing that I can count on one hand the number of times I've had a drum monitor for a show!)  I was very easy to please, just a little acoustic guitar, and some vocals so I can sing along to the parts of the songs I know.  As my sound check was wrapping up he looked at me with almost a deer in the headlights gaze and said "I've never had anyone play here who is so humble, what happened to your egos?"  Of course, the truth is that we have not done enough to earn an ego, but it gave me a chance to reflect on what is most important.  As fun as it was and is to pretend to be a rock star, there is nothing more important than making sure that others know how grateful you are for all they do for you.  And that sound guy made our cookie cutter rock music sound absolutely amazing!

I would not be where I am or who I am today without the amazing support, encouragement, and lessons on living from thousands of people.  If you are reading this chances are you fit into that category, so thank you for everything, my life is better because of you.

Can anyone ever really earn an ego?  

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Start it up!

So, I've decided to start blogging!  Today's topic is people watching.  The most awkward situations I have ever witnessed happen to other people, I think that is why people watching is so fun.

It should be widely understood that the most depressing place, and maybe by extension the most interesting place, to people watch is within the walls of the corporate hegemon and secret leader of the free world, Wal-mart.  Just a side note that I feel must be understood, I hate Wal-mart.  I find their policy of "cutting back" on everything (including common decency) to be antithetical to progressive society.  The only reason I am able to people watch at Wal-mart is because their prices are cheap and I am poor (if it were possible to avoid breathing their repressive air while in their stores I would, but I can only hold my breath for 62 seconds.)  But besides starving students Wal-mart manages to attract every counterexample to Darwinian theory imaginable (a google image search for people at Wal-mart is all the evidence I need).  Trust me, nature would never select these people to carry the human species into a new millennium.    

My own experience of watching these ape-ish beings in their natural environment of floor to ceiling shelves of canned meat and bulk savings on generic brand one-ply toilet paper can be summed up in the  exchange between a small child and his "mother" (you'll understand the quotes when you read on).

My attention was immediately drawn to this couple by the screams of anger I heard pouring out of a woman's mouth on the other end of the produce section in Wal-mart.  I might have just chosen to pick of my bananas on the way back to the front of the store were it not for my curiosity at what could cause such incoherent rage (if it were the bananas I would have to find a new healthy snack for the week.)  As I approached the obviously still smoldering situation the woman's voice began to be understandable; I recognized the flurry of obscenities that came flooding out of her mouth with each exasperated breath.  Then I saw the recipient of her anger.  To my relief the bananas appeared to be fine, but to my dismay she had been yelling at her toddler age son.  As I continued to observe the situation it was apparent that the young boy's attention had been less on the healthy snacks in the center of the section and more on the delicious treats always kept in the same corner of the store; donuts, cinnamon rolls, bear claws, the list goes on, it is often too much for me withstand let alone a toddler.

Of course I am not saying that this "mother" should always give in to the demands of her small children, that would only lead to more trouble.  But what I am saying is that to tell an innocent, now crying child to "shut the #&$% up" because he is making a scene is not just inappropriate, but it is proof that just cause you can have kids does not mean you should.  If only there were books written about raising kids (a google book search for raising kids yields more than a quarter of a million results.)  There are lots of styles for parenting, lots of ideas about what proper disciple is, and lots of people who change their minds about what is right and what is wrong.  It is troubling to know, however, that, at least in the anarchic world of the Wal-mart produce section, yelling at a defenseless child because he is the one that is making a scene is still acceptable.