I’m Sure It’s Over (aka My Sister’s Awesome)

Before I begin this post, I must bow my head and give a moment of silence (and hope Elana joins me in this act) as last night saw one of my favorite Survivors, Amanda Kimmel, finally get her torch snuffed after playing the game for over 100 days. She holds the record (until Parvati and her flirtatious mind, two separate people IMO, surpass it.) My favorite part was that my daughter knows who Amanda Kimmel is and when she saw her in the episode she said “Daddy, it’s Amanda!” How cute.

Ok, my mourning will continue later…

Back to me. I’m sure many people enjoyed reading the ‘Survivor: LDS Authors’ post from Wednesday. It was the ‘buzzing’ thing for the LDS-writing culture for a couple of days. If I could come up with awesome posts like that continuously, I don’t know how much more popular I’d be. Because one person thought it was awesome, it got a lot of attention. Because another person liked it, it got some more attention.

To be honest, I was really excited to see all the views and all the comments. But this doesn’t mean I’m famous. This doesn’t mean I’m going to be published.  The benefit that I feel that I may have received from this post was being able to go up to someone and say “Hi, I’m the guy that wrote Survivor: LDS Authors.” And some people will probably say “Cool” and move away from me thinking “Wow! That guy’s a total bozo!” Some people may want to chat and actually get to know the dork behind the idea. But really, as I said in my previous post, I wrote to entertain me.

I’m really curious to know what people expect from my blog. If you’re new here, I mostly write my opinions about different things: whether it’s Survivor, writers conferences, football, basketball, or something completely random like alien abductions. My blog occasionally mentions an author or two (mostly James Dashner for whatever weird reason that I still don’t understand.) So I don’t know what you’re expecting but I do hope to be random and entertaining.

Today is my awesome sister’s birthday. And in honor of her I’m going to do a list of Ten Things I Learned From My Awesome Sister.

10. Education first: My sister started her college degree later than normal people. Of course, my sister is advanced from normal. No, she’s not abnormal….Anyway, I’m off topic. Well, my sister did what she could to make sure that her brothers at least got a Bachelor’s degree. All three of us have completed those degrees and all three of her sister-in-laws have a degree of some sort.

9. Sticking your tongue out at cops is fun: When I was six, I was at the mall with my older brother and my sister. She told us to stick our tongues out at the cops. Don’t know why….but I’ve always remembered it.

8. Some people are number one and some people think they are: Those that truly are #1 use their index finger. Those who think they are use the one next to it.

7. Despite how horrible L.A. traffic is, at least the people know how to drive: For some reason, we always end up on discussions of horrible drivers. The slowness of Florida drivers, the rudeness of Utah drivers, etc. But we always seem to have the impression that CA drivers are at least courteous. They’re stuck in traffic with you. They’re not going anywhere. Patience on the freeway gets you there faster. Impatience on the free gets Fox 11 News choppers covering your accident.

6. If you let other people define you, then you’re going to be confused with a mirror: But if you define yourself first, you’re less likely to look like and act like a moron. Don’t let others define you. Be you. That’s the best person you can be.

5. If you’re going to do something random, do it in style: Getting married in Vegas is random. Getting married in a drive through takes style. That is all there is to it.

4. Women can like and play sports: I do not know a bigger fan of sports in general. This woman loves golf, surfing, football, baseball, basketball…maybe hockey. And there’s nothing wrong with it.

3. Football is awesome: Is there anything that I need to add to this…..for those foreigners….American Football is awesome (and there still needs to be a team in L.A.)

2. I’m worth something: Yeah, I’m skeptical about my writing. I’m skeptical about a few things. But you know what, I’m still me and that’s still good enough.

1. Tell it like it is: My sister doesn’t hold back. Ok, so out of all the other things on this list, this is the biggest truth. (Wait, were there any lies?) My sister has no problem telling everyone her opinion. Just ask every member in my family. And every person who knows her. Shoot, just ask her, she’ll tell you. I feel like I tell it like it is a lot. But I probably only do it 40% as often as she does. Why lie and hide? Is it going to do you good? (This is why she would get voted off first on Survivor, and the same reason she would win.)

There you have it. In honor of my sister’s adfjalkfjdfj-th birthday…well….I’d go golfing, but Utah ordered snow.

Alien abductions are involuntary, but probings are scheduled.

What is Bob?

First of all, 19 views yesterday. My friend Jenn made a good comment on my facebook page: good thing it didn’t say butt probings are scheduled. Maybe people misread my facebook page? Were more people interested in butt probings than alien probings? And seeing as how my blog had nothing to do with either were all 19 people disappointed? I really didn’t expect to get that many viewers, but all I have to say is this: Awesome.

So, where did “Bob” come from? Well, in my life, my brother Chris and I used to use the name Bob as the most generic guy name ever, for whatever reason. Come on, who doesn’t come up with something stupid when they’re teenagers or younger? Shoot, who doesn’t come up with something stupid in their 20s, 30s, 40s and so forth?

Well, for some reason, Bob became my random alias nickname. Bob was our joke nickname. We thought it was hilarious when Family Matters even mentioned “and I’d have to go to UoB!” “UoB?” “University of Bob!” Of course, Chris and I wanted to apply, but for some reason, our IQs were too high.

Moving forward with the “Bob” concept. Apryl and I both can admit we’re nerds. We’re just very cool nerds. Well, Apryl is, I just get to be under the “cool by association” tab. Anyway, we were playing Jeopardy on the computer one day. Well, I thought I knew the answer to a question and I hit my button and started typing. I realized my answer was wrong and my time was coming to an end. So, I ended up typing “What is Bob?” Was I right? No…….not remotely. The answer was probably something like “What is Ping Pong?” Anyway, Apryl thought that “What is Bob?” was funny. So we kept using What is Bob? as our fake answer. Then, we got tired of the computer cheating so we created our third contestant, Bob. Well, Bob never won. We even had Bobbette on occasion. She never won either. Of course, Bob and Bobbette were great at killing time. If Apryl or I wanted more time, we’d just let Bob or Bobbette answer. And the question they’d give? “What is Bob?” or “What is Bobbette?”

In all my time playing/watching Jeopardy, there has been two times when Bob was actually part of the answer. Literally, the answer was just Bob. One was something like “God, the Devil, and this person is a tv show on NBC”. The answer to that one was “Who is Bob?” But, I did get a “What is Bob?” for “Out of all of Newhart’s television shows, this is the one with the shortest title.” I was so excited when I heard “What is Bob?” I almost called my sister. I don’t know why I didn’t. Maybe because I would’ve felt like I had no life. Yeah, like I really do anyway.

I even once had whatisbob@hotmail.com as my email address. I miss that one. Maybe I’ll do that one again. I’ve been leaning towards more mature email addresses lately though. I like my random ones though still.

So, yesterday’s question. Nope, it wasn’t Dog Grooming. But that’s so close of an answer. The answer is of course Math. Wow! Really? Yeah. I love Math. I wish I could go back and start at early math, well, not early math, because let’s face it, I can do that stuff in my sleep. I’m talented enough. Really, I would love to go start with Pre-Calc (just for the familiarity of it). To make it more fun, I’d want my sister Apryl to go through the program with me. No, we wouldn’t need to take all the awesome generals in this scenario. It would just be one math class at a time. Why would I want Apryl in there with me? Duh! I’d have somebody that I can copy off of. No, not really. It’d be because we both would be answering the questions and skewing any curve and have the whole class hating us. That’s always fun.

Today’s useless trivia question: Which is not a real comic series in France/Belgium?
a) Les Schtroumpfs (in English, The Smurfs)
b) Les Aventures de Richard (The Adventures of Richard)
c) Bob et Bobbette (Bob and Bobbette)
d) Asterix (Aterix, hmmm….that one doesn’t really translate. Guess, technically, it’s Asterisk)

Yes, I’m Short

Today, I’m going to have a short post. Well, it’ll be on a short topic. Wow, that doesn’t sound bad. Let me explain what I mean.

Without shoes on I am 5-foot 6 3/8 inches tall. Mary (my wife for those that still don’t know) is 4-foot 11 1/2 inches tall. My daughter Lizzie is small. Yes, we are reminded of this quite regularly. “Oh, she’s small,” people will say. (You know, after they say how cute she is, which is always a nice compliment, and always true.) Well, of course she’s small. Look at her friggin’ parents! I didn’t exactly get the luxury of being the 5’9″ that I actually once dreamed about. Mary never remained past 5 feet like she hoped. Do we care? No! Why should you? Oh, and our son, James, he’s small too. But at least he’s bigger than his sister was.

It’s funny the look people give me when I call James chunky. He is. In comparison to his sister or to how he was at birth, James is more chunky than he was. No, he’s not obese or fat. He’s just not as small as he was. No, he’s not the chunkiest little baby out there. Thank goodness for that.

So, it’s funny to hear people remind me that I’m short. Do you really think I don’t know? Yeah, I know you’re just adding to the conversation. I know you’re just thinking you’re being but do you really understand that I haven’t cared since high school. Sure, some days I wish I was taller. Sure, some days I wish my wife was a little taller. Sure, I wish that Lizzie wasn’t going to be the shortest in her class. Yeah, I hope James isn’t going to be the shortest boy in his school. In the end. That’s life. I was picked on and teased for my height, one of a plethora of things that people found ‘wrong’ with me or, for a better term, mockable. (Hey! WordPress doesn’t recognize mockable! It’s a word! I said it, it must be one, right?)

No Fear of the Dentist

Today was Lizzie’s first real checkup at the dentist. She did really well. They all loved her and thought she was so cute. Who doesn’t right? I mean Mary and I make the world’s cutest babies (oh, and that’s nowhere near up for debate either.) As much as you’d love to hear about her this blog’s about me and we’re going with a memory day today.

Actually, a few memories concerning dentists and oral surgeons.

When I was preparing for my mission, I had to get work done on my awful teeth. Eleven cavities in all. Oh wow! Patience and pain went hand-in-hand for that 3 or 4 week ordeal. Seriously. I really liked Dr. Jones (I’ve heard him called Jack and John and I really have no clue what to put on here, so I’m going with Dr. Jones), the dentist I saw in California. That great man had patience in dealing with my teeth. But you know what was the worst, he put enough Novocaine into my system that I’ve grown a tolerance to it, therefore the numbing experience lasts only about a half-hour to forty-five minutes. Not his fault, bad oral hygiene. Seriously Casey and Kimmy, you never told me my breath stank! Maybe you did. Neither one of you had problems telling me of flaws before.

Next, a few months later, we have my awesome time visiting Dr…….um…..tip of my tongue….Anyway, I had my wisdom teeth taken out by this doctor. That is an awesome experience. Being put under for the first time in my life was a little nerve racking to say the least. But I did my best to keep myself calm. After surgery, they woke me up and took me to a recovery area where my brother was asking me questions about how I felt or something else all together. Regardless, I was pretty out of it. The best part was when they wheeled me down to the car. I seriously felt like I was on a roller coaster the entire time. I must’ve looked psycho or something. It was fun.

And finally, a few years back, Mary convinced me to go to Dr. Nance, her favorite dentist ever. He’s a pretty cool guy. Well, on my first filling at this company, they offered me nitrous. Well, never had it before. Thought it’d be cool. Let me tell you, the combination of the nitrous and watching The Italian Job, makes a great movie even better. Probably would make movies like Howard the Duck, Rocky 5000, Legally Blonde 2, and other annoyingly horrible movies pretty good.

A Few of My Favorite Scents

Since I was about 16, I’ve been interested in colognes. I don’t really know why. I was stuck in J.C. Penney with my mom and Apryl (my awesome, wonderful, and beautiful sister for those who don’t know who Apryl is). As always, I was bored. I think Mom and Apryl were looking at jewelry for something. So, I went over to the cologne section because, well, it was the most manly place to be at the time, I believe.

So, I wore deodorant all the time, but by the time my junior year rolled around, I liked impressing people. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to afford cologne (but my mom bought my first two bottles of cologne.) So, I took home three of those litmus papers (or whatever they’re called) with the sprays on it. One was Nautica, one was Curve, and one was some blue bottle that I still don’t know but didn’t like as well as the others.

 During my senior year of high school, Mom and I were at Penney’s or something like that and I was looking at the cologne and was really interested in Curve. There were a few others I thought that smelled good, but Curve had the best scent and so my mom bought me a bottle of it. So, after that I wore Curve for a while.

Well, one day, I was at the Nautica outlet store in Camarillo and was looking at the cologne selection that they had there. I remembered that Nautica  had been one of those colognes I initially liked. Well, the store had about three different varieties of Nautica. I really liked the Competition line of the Nautica brand instead of the other Nautica that I had initially liked. Well, I didn’t buy any at this time. But, when Mom and I went to Burlington Coat Factory later on (don’t know when) I bought a bottle of Nautica Competition. I liked Curve, but it was too ‘fancy’ of a smell and Competition was more sporty of a smell. (This from the 10 year old kid that didn’t care if he smelled like old socks, somehow, I got vain.)

Well, Nautica Competition became my favorite cologne because it was a lighter scent than Curve. When Chris (my older brother) met Gina (his wife) he found out that she liked Curve. And every morning for a while when he and Gina were just dating, Chris would come to my room and use my Curve. Funny story, we were at Barnes and Noble one time with Eric (our oldest brother) and Brandi (Eric’s wife), and Chris and I were in the magazine section. In the back of one of the magazine sections was a magazine called ‘Curve’. Well, I didn’t think anything of it, but because Gina loved Curve the cologne, Chris decided to look at it. Now, my thought was “there’s no magazine for a cologne, Chris. I’m sure it’s just something you don’t want anyway.” Well, I was definitely right and Chris’ curiosity got the better of him. The magazine was for women who love other women. Chris immediately, with much surprise and shock, dropped the magazine back in it’s slot. Oh, I laughed a lot.

Then there was my mission. I served in Belgium and France and if you know one thing about their culture, you’ll know that they don’t shower everyday. Also, they use l’eau de toilet to cover up their stench. So cologne and perfume is fairly inexpensive there. I had given Chris my bottle of Curve (since Chris was using it more than me) and I had ran out of my Competition. Well, the sister missionaries (girls on a mission for those that don’t know the term) in my district (a small group of missionaries that report to the same district leader) had gone to the ‘smelly store’ and one of the sisters, Misty, had fallen in love with the smell of Aqua Di Gio by Armani. Well, I really liked the smell as well and vowed to buy a bottle. Unfortunately, I never did. I stopped wearing cologne all together.

For Valentine’s Day a few years ago, Mary (my wife, if you don’t know that, then you obviously don’t know me) bought me a bottle of Curve because Aqua Di Gio was too expensive, but knew that I liked Curve as well. I was very happy to be able to wear cologne again. I had tried aftershave but didn’t really like their scents. Well, Mary’s brother, Philip, found out that I liked cologne and decided to pawn off his extra bottles of cologne to me. He gave me two bottles (one fairly small and one large) of Kenneth Cole’s Reaction, which is a nice smell and I really like. Along with that he gave me Lucky You (which is an ok smell) and Aspen (which is too strong for me, but I may try wearing one day.) He also gave me a small bottle of Competition, which totally made my day since I can’t find it in stores anymore.

Last night, Philip asked me to help move his bed and while in his room I picked up his large bottle of Aqua Di Gio and took a nice whiff of it. (Now, if I could just put it casually in my pocket…hmmm…) afterwards, he kindly gave me his small bottle of Aqua Di Gio that he’d been given. So, now that I’ve got a new supplier of cologne, I’ve received all the colognes I’ve ever cared to purchase in the last two and a half years, Mary giving me the Curve and Philip giving me the Nautica: Competition and the very important and best smelling Aqua Di Gio, definitely my favorite.

Well, I know that it was long, but it was such a good random topic. For now, keep smelling.

The Longest Two Months of the Year

So, when I worked at Blendtec, I had a conversation with one of my co-workers there concerning July and August and their length. If you take any two consecutive months out of the year, there are only two occurrances where two months have 62 days: December and January are one, July and August are the other. Now, why are Jul/Aug longer than Dec/Jan? Easy, what happens between December 1st and January 31st? Well, there’s the obvious answers of my birthday (24th) and my anniversary (18th), along with my dearly-departed mother’s birthday (14th). But, on to the less obvious answers.

For school there’s winter break. For the religious there’s Christmas, Channakuh, and Kwanzaa. For the religious partiers, there’s New Year’s Eve. For people who like rights, there’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day (for those in Utah, that’s what normal people call Human Rights Day). You just had Thanksgiving and it’s fattening food shortly before December started, and you’re looking at buying heart shaped objects, chocolates, and flowers, and annoying little Valentine’s Day’s cards that no one keeps anyway. So, for those two months there’s so much going on that it doesn’t really matter that there’s 62 days. You’ve got far too much to do.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, in the middle of the year, you’ve got the 4th of July. One big explosive day. For those privileged Utahns (and I’ve heard the occasional Idaho or Arizona city) there’s Pioneer Day when Brigham Young said “This is the place” and non-Mormons in Utah heard “Excuse to drink”. There’s back-to-school time (a parent’s celebration, a child’s dread). There’s preparation for college (or for my friend Emily, apparently there are finals in August). There’s just work. It’s the hottest time of the year. Ventura County has it’s awesome fair (like a mini-cheapo-Disneyland invades the fairgrounds with a bunch of loud, disgusting pigs (both the two-legged and four-legged variety). But really, for me, August is filled with a bunch of birthdays that we should celebrate as holidays. There’s my nephew Joshua (8th), my dad (13th), most importantly my wife (20th) (oh wait, that’s coming up soon, better plan something), and then my humble, empathetic, devoted, beautiful friend Casey’s b-day (29th).  (You do realize that Casey is most likely to read this, right?) My co-worker Tami has about 5 birthdays next week she’s got to deal with. So, besides the fact that people are apparently bored around Thanksgiving, there’s not a whole lot going on in July and August. Thankfully, there’s Labor Day in a few weeks. Then you’ve got the whole preparation for Halloween that follows Labor Day (ok, we all know that’s when people start the Christmas shopping). Anyway, I say we institute National Long Month Week and all get Holiday pay for the middle week of August.

Back to Me

Ok, since the majority of the people I know reading this blog are from my high school days, I’m going to go with another memory from that time frame. Also, it made me smile when one of my good high school friends, Maggie, told me that I make her happy with my whole BB-VHS. My ego’s too big not to take that compliment and run with it. And run with it I shall. Today’s memory is how the title of this post, Back to Me, became a common phrase my junior year of high school.

For 4th period of my junior year of high school, I was a T.A. Not just any T.A. I was a teacher’s assistant for Mrs. Schroeder, one of the most loved teachers at VHS (as long as you’ve had her in a class). Anyway, that period, she taught French I. My friend Kimmy was in that class and so was a friend of hers, Maggie, whom she’d known since elementary school (unless I’m wrong and missing something). Anyway, Maggie and Kim sat next to each other. And since Kim is my ‘sister’ I would always sit behind them during class in my T.A. chair. During verbal exercises I’d have to help students here and there. Well, Maggie and I have one thing in common, we always feel that whatever we have to say, should be said and heard above all other’s opinions. Because, in all honesty, everyone is entitled to my opinion.

Well, it was during one of these discussions that the topic of boyfriends/girlfriends was brought up. Half of the ‘verbal’ time was spent on me and my girlfriend at the time. But Maggie was very concerned on, well, I can’t remember now. Anyway, she started talking and then asked a question. That’s the wrong thing to do to someone who rambles. So, of course, I started talking and someone switched subjects to something concerning to Kim and her latest boyfriend. Well, Maggie wasn’t happy with the flow of the conversation. So she interrupted by saying, “Ok, don’t care.” And then she took her hands, made them go in a large circle towards Kim and I, and said, “Back to me.” Forever since, this has been an inside joke between Maggie, Kim, and I (mostly whenever Maggie and I or all three of us are together). It’s a very vain thing to say. Oh well.

*singing* “You’re so vain, you probably think this song is…”