Sunday, April 30, 2006

That's Enough Sitting on the Fence, For the Fear of Breaking Dams

All things shall pass, just ask George Harrison on his 3-cd set released right after The Beatles broke up. I'm coming to you live, last night on 907 East 38th, feet propped up kinda cold, and kinda asleep. It's been a tough posting to put into perspective, I try to pop something out there everyday, but it's been stormy weather.

Life does indeed throw each and every one of us little lessons, and what we take away from them is totally up to us. I make a big deal of everything, I'm proud of this, especially when it pertains to people, because when it all boils down to it, what's more important than cultivating relationships with people who are important to you. When the proverbial shit hits the fan, I don't run from it, I take some time, put it into perspective, and act accordingly on what I think is what's best for me.

Respect yourself, if you can't do that, you can't respect anything else. You have to be true to yourself, and what you believe to be right. If you feel you are compromised too much, chances are this is to be true. If you are hurt, and the other party in question doesn't understand what the big deal is, the decision is obvious, chalk it up as a stalemate, we are all grownups, do what you have to do, and move on.

I know who my friends are, and I'm not going to do any bullshit loyalty tests, whatever will be will be. True I do talk shit about people behind their back (who doesn't?), but I clarify what's import. Yea, so and so is this this and this, but at the end of the day, they are a great person, and that's what always shines thru in context of bashing. For my piece of mind, I'm not repulsive, I don't stink, I respect people, I'm fiercely loyal to my friends, I trust them and respect them, and I foster open and honest communication, and the last thing I would do is sell a friend out to the lowest bidder, assuming worse case scenarios, taking remarks said out of context and in confidence, and getting on the party line to discuss, even if the earth's plates are colliding, or anything other lame ass excuse one can think of at the moment.

There are dangers of having close circles of friends. The climactic series of Friends gone bad has comes to a close, and the dust is settling. But it's not funny, it plays out to be more like a Greek tragedy. You can't just tell someone that Zeus isn't the God of all Gods, and you don't have to sacrifice your first born. Everyone puts themselves in the middle of it all, when there really isn't a middle, it's just a series of events set into motion, and what happens, happens for a reason, you can't avoid it, you have to embrace it and go with it, learn as you go. A situation can be jacked up for the sake of being jacked up, there's an end in itself, and there's no sense in shaking your head and going, 'what just happened here.'

I know in my heart that I'm making the right decision to move on, I acknowledge the signs are there, and I'm listening to them and embracing them. While dwelling on the past, I get pretty upset, miserable in fact, but when I look to the wide open future, my life seems a dream. I am going to do my best in becoming a no limit human being, one that's not bound by anything 'bad' (pretty much talking about my own inputs, processes and outputs), and I'm looking forward to embracing the future. My worldly possessions are in Shiner, and I'm staying with my sister for the next few months. After the PMP certification in June, my life is open. I have no idea where I'll be, I have no idea where I'm going to work, but change is inevitable, I'm not denying the auspicious signs. I find comfort in this, its about me growing as a human being, and not being bound by anything. It's following my heart, and respecting my capacity to make the right decisions for myself.

Yea, the posting is vague, there's a lot been going on in my life, however I don't intend to use this real estate to bash anyone. I'm going to focus my efforts on the future, and I'm going to continue to be high strung and question reality, it's really the biggest strength I have. I figured out the rubix cube when I was a kid, it was hard, but I worked at it and it was solved. I've done what I could with a puzzle that doesn't have all the pieces, and I've come to peace of mind. The pieces add up, and I've come to accept it all.

Maybe time will sort it all out, but in the meantime I leave behind some dear friends, on my own accord. I'm going to make a concerted effort to learn from this lesson life has dealt, and focus on the future, where excitement and possibility lie just beyond the hump.

--------------------------

Random Quotations --- JFK was a great man, when is another like him going to step to the plate ....

"To state the facts frankly is not to despair the future nor indict the past. The prudent heir takes careful inventory of his legacies and gives a faithful accounting to those whom he owes an obligation of trust."

"I am certain that after the dust of centuries has passed over our cities, we, too, will be remembered not for victories or defeats in battle or in politics, but for our contribution to the human spirit."

"When written in Chinese, the word ‘crisis’ is composed of two characters – one represents danger, and the other represents opportunity."

"The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining."

"I hope that no American ... will waste his franchise and throw away his vote by voting either for me or against me solely on account of my religious affiliation. It is not relevant."

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Eeyore's Birthday

Gotta love Austin, only place I know that has things like Eeyore's Birthday, which is the donkey in Winnie the Poo. I'd consider myself liberal, but this crowd makes me look like, hmmm, some ultra conservative.


Well the Austin hippies come out of the woodwork for this one, I think they were even smokin' weed up on that hill! hahaha ---- Some of the drum circles were amazing, this one was the best. There were plenty circles, plenty hula hoops, and I saw a lot of painted boobs that should have been covered.


Finally there's the egg toss, I like this 'sport' just keep steppin back and throwing and catching the egg until the egg breaks. Didn't stay around for the winners, but we saw a lot of peeps get smashed by eggs, how lovely.


The weather was beautiful for the day, but as it stands, Texas has weather identity crisis, it can't decide if it's hot or cold (cold meaning a nice 70 degrees.)

Friday, April 28, 2006

Be More Specific

Mothers in Hyde Park, the healthiest place I've ever eaten in my life. I'm struggling to find something on the menu that's predictable in my meat and potatoes lifestyle.

I try for the veggie burger, I ordered it saying, 'just the patty, cheese, and guac' -- well maybe I was being too specific. All that came out was that, and 3 condiments, so mustard, relish, and mayo....I think. That's what it looked like on the plate.....


Vegetarians, vegans, whew -- why crawl to the top of the food chain to eat that stuff.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Too Many Shadows, Whispering Voices, Faces on Posters, Too Many Choices

I read a poll that said the average American watches 34 hours of television a week. I've expressed in the past my intense dislike for the TV many times in the blog, it goes past the conventional haters notions of what is bad and what isn't. Of course reality television is shit, and most reasonable minds will concur on this, but my dislike goes on to not truly ever finishing an episode of Seinfeld, The Simpsons, Southpark, Sex in the City, The Supranos or anything witty, clever, 'critically acclaimed masterpieces.' I realize I miss out on some good stuff, cultural references, and signs of our time, but I trade all that to not be consumed by what buckley calls the white noise of the world....there's just too many better things to do, even if you're just idling with your spare time. This allows you to be creative in your own thoughts (not necessarily unique), and not let the media force feed market researched digestible pop culture crap down your throat.

Recently I've been accused of not being introspective, and it's very disheartening considering it is someone close to me, someone who I thought understood that I go thru analysis paralysis with everything in my life. I've the ability to laugh at my mistakes, admit when I'm wrong, work to seek compromise, to the extent I'm not trampled on by someone who sees offense as the best defense. Being introspective, or as critics would call it, 'on my high horse', I find that I'm very comfortable in my own skin, understanding that my character traits aren't character flaw, but to be pointless and cliche, it's what makes 'me me'.

Let's see, tying this back to tv and the media....hmmm....it does a great job influencing and entertaining, but it doesn't do a damn bit of good in teaching the realms of reality, and life for the most part, life IS a long road (nice metaphor, eh?), not full of the crafty 'real-isms' depicted in your favorite sitcom. Some people are able to watch with a grain of salt, but many people don't understand that they are being sucked into a false reality which says, 1 - watch me for 17 minutes, because that's just the right amount of digestible content, 2 - let me make you insecure, let me be your 'hero', 3 - let me show you just how sarcastic I can be, and use this power of sarcasm to make you weak, without you even knowing it.

Guess to conclude, the next time you're rounding 10+ hours in front of the tube, take a step back, invest 5 or so hours in reading some shit you are interested in, get a hobby, fly a kite, hop on an exercise bike, hell, visit the zoo, entertain a friend, visit with some family, mow some grass, do something beneficial to the community, or if your stomach fancies it, go have a heart to heart with someone that's important to you. That's where the true inspiration and irony exist.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Manuel's Travelling Tonight on a Plane

Had a jolly good talk with Manuelabor, it's official this studmuffin is 'off the market,' as he will be getting married on New Years Eve in College Station. Hmmm, that gives me 8 months to find a date, what do you think, can I do it folks? Not to mention, thus far I'm the only groomsman, no pressure at all!

Well big time congrats to you Manuel and Laci, I'm totally hyped about the event. Had to pull some pictures out of the archive, Manuelabor and Don Quixote, pictured in Toledo Spain.


Manuelabor on the mountain monestary Montserrat, a hop skip and a jump outside of Barcelona. Just in time, the M:I:3 pose.


We did 2 European Tours together, the first one for a month or so, and the next for a few weeks. The first tour we got mad at each other and didn't talk to each other for about 3 hours, the second tour, we got mad at each other and didn't talk for about 10 seconds. He's one of the few people that I could tolerate on a trip like that, and I'm surprised he could tolerate me for that long. Here we are at Jim and Tina's humble abode in Spiesen.


Looking forward to a potential bachelor party to New Orleans with a hand picked set of folks. Exciting Exciting Exciting -- a sign we are getting old and wise, from Kaspar ShoRacks to galavanting around Europe to getting married, my how time flies when you are having fun!

Big time congrats!

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Dance All Night Keep the Beat, Don’t You Worry ’bout Two Left Feet

Ashley teaches at Dance Associates, the recital was today in Westlake fancy pants land. Great outfits, cool kids (literally), and Ashley even let me pick out some of the music. Nothing like using Kraftwerk for 'future sounding stuff', and resurrecting Grandmaster Flash.

The opener was impressive, check out the killer costumes.


I was snoozing a bit in the darkened hall, but when 'The Hills are Alive,' came on the speakers I automatically perked up, and enjoyed the rest of the show.


There was a gymnastic piece, and I was impressed with these performances. I can't even get close to touching my toes.


After 4 years of pleading with me, I finally went to one of Ashleys dance recitals. It gets a big thumbs up!

Send me Dead Flowers by the Mail, Send me Dead Flowers to my Wedding

Far from dead flowers, the flowers are in bloom in the backyard. They are living despite the 100+ temperatures. It's a joy to sit in the backyard and enjoy the smell, and watch Benny smellin' all over everything.


Kudos to Jenny for doing a lovely job with the planting, cultivating, watering, and upkeep.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

We Got Winners, We Got Losers, Chain Smokers and Boozers

Yea, I'm quoting Toby Keith, the 'angry American', someone please shoot me in the head. Alas, I can't think of a better tagline for the day.

The night brings us out to Pflugerville for Dawn and Tim's wedding reception. The venue Knebel's, a Shiner type bar on steroids, where the beer is two bucks and the karoke is horrible. The back part even had 'washers.'


If you want to see some interesting swing dancing, take a gander at this video of Tim and Dawn cuttin' a rug. These two are legends at this bar.

Inside, the place looks like a VFW or America Legion Hall, and a picture of some good old by with the last name of Tuff on the wall, a man who died in 2004.


There's the crew, the DPS workerbees having a few drinks. Doc's got a new lady friend, welcome Melanie to the crew! Crazy Carl and Jessicameister also made the drive from Lexington.


Finally the only girl worthy of 'American Idol' quality in the group, Jessica, I forgot what she sang but it's alway pretty damn good.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Hegemony or Survival - Noam Chomsky

Holy shit this guy is cynical, popped this cd set in the changer about 3 months ago and finally finished this masterpiece of America bashing. Some right wing nutjob even went to the extent of mentioning Chomsky in his book 100 People Who are Screwing up America .

Chomsky makes many good points in the book, but come on, can it be that bad? We do sponser 'state terrorism' here in our hemisphere when it serves us, and I don't believe it to be a coincidence there is no nation of power on this side of the pond, I believe we do hold other countries back if it's in our best interest.

We do believe in developing the economies of other nations, but its wholesale development and not retail development. We want to stick our own MNC's in there, Wal-Martatizing and Mc Donalds'afying the world, therefore, 'progess' has to be on our terms.


It's going to be a good while before I can handle another dose of Chomsky, his new book, more than likely about the Bush administrations abuse of power is just going to have to wait. Till then, damn, does someone have something light and fluffy to recommend?

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Look at Em, They'ze Spinnin'

The San Marcos outlet mall, a great place to go, Mike D, Mike P and I trying to find me a disco shirt for the pending Germany trip.

We go to the Ecko store and find a belt with a buckle with a spinner on it, Mike D is intrigued. Geeze what will the think of next.


Yea, don't go in that Hugo Boss store, a t-shirt in that place is about 75 bucks. Then you get Mahon in his German accent say 'what do you expect, this is GERMAN, if you want cheap shit, go to the 4.99 sale rack at Old Navy, shit clothes.'

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Return of the Mac

I used to think all you could do on a mac was surf the web, write papers and listen to itunes. Boy I was wrong --hahaha, you can surf the web, write papers, listen to itunes, snap photos on your built-in webcam, and do it in style.

I don't know what it is about this new mac we got at work, but it makes me smile, but I don't think in a 'good' way. We have to make everything safari compliant now, so as the code thickens, this pretty little all in wonder everything built in the monitor mac will probably get thrown into the wall.


I hear you can do some wonderful things with the 'garage band' software, and people always say its better for graphics (even though I don't agree, it's just that Jafa's (Just another fucking artist) are used to using a mac).

But come on, how bout a right click, it's pretty damn useful.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Take Another Shot of Courage, Wonder why the Right Words Never Come, You Just get Numb

Toshi, you know I'm your buddy and all, but damn, you sure can't handle your Mexican martini.

We can't forget the infamous night at Trudy's, right buddy? And I won't forget when you tried again a month ago @SXSW, this time at least you only drank 1/2 of 1/4 of this monster.


Had to pop this picture out there bud, hope you are doing well in the land of the rising sun, or however y'all refer to it these days.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

It's Never Clear It's Pantomime, Goin' Round and Round

Ding ding ding ding ding, the alarm goes off at 6.15, not bad one might say, but when you are 29 and you got to bed at 3:30 the 'night' before, it's a cruel joke.

The annual sunrise service at the church, and Ronnie asked me to sit in and play geetar. Was all fine and dandy until I realize the only guitar I have in Shiner has tons of stickers plastered all over it, one big one that says "Mullets Rock," hmmm, a little embarrassing considering we are in the front of the church. Well there's Ronnie and Sharon, not pictured are myself and Brea, the bass chick who likewise stayed up all night.


After the sunrise service and a nice nap, it was time to hunt the Easter eggs. This year mom and Ashton were the Easter bunnies.


Ashton thought she was going to be sneeky and hide an egg where Kyle and Collin wouldn't find it, hell I thought it was a great hiding place. Well, it was the first egg found.


This year the masses didn't come out for the hunt, Just these two little dudes.


Ashton has a new car, the Nissan Altima, a sweet ride, got the new car smell and everything. We took it for a spin, I'm trying to fix her extremely sick laptop. Here we are trying to look gangsta, by the way, that bald head is big time sun burnt.


The family stuff in Shiner is great, lots of fun and food, food that leaves us paralyzed for the remainder of the day.

Stay tuned for a busy stressful week of odds and ends. The Cars Anthology, a brilliant set of disks, getting EXTREMELY HEAVY rotation in the VDub and Stinkpad.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Take a Good Swing at All My Dreams, They Pivot and Slip, I Drop my Fists and They're Back -- Laughing

A beautiful scene this evening straight from Ashley's house. Ashley and Howard dance swing in the living room.


Among other things, Howard and I talked about the Queen vs The Beatles musicals in Vegas, various sites around Munich, beer (always an excellent selection in the house), and the finer points of guitar effect pedals, especially as they pertain to Boston and The Cars (which I believe to be doing a tour soon!)

It's fun to be in your hometown on a holiday weekend, all the 'city folk' come down, and more often than not, you run into friends of old, and make new friends in the process, and as you get older you go, O Damn, you are so and so's kid, gotcha!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

My Heart Wants to Sing Every Song It Hears

Call me a flamer if you will, but I'm super hyped about hanging out in Salzburg for a few days. The Mozart festival is going on, or was going on, I'll have to do more research. And of course we have the Von Trapp stuff with The Sound of Music.

Around May 17, just think of me, I'll be frolicking around the mountain like Fraulein Maria did, laughing at the brook when it trips and falls, and generally being on cloud 9.


Also, the acient city of Prague, in terms of 'vibe', its the most amazing 'vibe' I've ever felt in a city, one of mystery and mystique, coupled with really religious stuff balanced out by what seems to be really sinister stuff.

Snapped some pictures last time, and from Charles Bridge, its hands down got to be some of the most picturesque places on the planet.


Prague also has the biggest castle in the world, this isn't it. This is what I believe to be a church in the main plaza in downtown Prague. It's a shame I don't know more about what I snap pictures of.


Last time hanging out there, this was the 'underbelly', and I do plan to spend some time down here. Last time I was a wide eyed tourist, second time around it's time to explore, examine and mingle.


There's our two non-Deutschland stops on the trip, and boy they are doozies. I am riddled with stress, and a breath of fresh Bavarian air will do the trick.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Gimmie A Ticket for an Aeroplane, Ain't Got Time to take a Fast Train

Lots of things come to mind thinking about airplanes. Here's a few personal sentiments about hopping on the big ol plane to where the hell eva. Naturally, there always has to be a song behind the sentiment. So herd aboard, like cattle, hope you have a high number, and hope you don't sit next to a dumbass, psycho, or a shoe bomber that you'll have to tackle in mid-flight.

1. Morbid - Initial thoughts are 'pull me out of the air crash, pull me out of the wreck'. Yea, when those engines start roarin' is about time I could be rich and get the Bose Noise cancelling headphones that run about 300 bucks. You take off and soon enough you are flying like the eagles, and when the plane turns, you are looking down at earth, kinda shows how insignificant we really are as human beings. Does anyone else seem to get freaked out by the crazy shit the wing does during takeoffs and landings, exposing what appears to be bare wires and such?

2. Hollywood - Second thought is what the box tops explains, 'gimmie that ticket for an aeroplane.' I've always thought it would be the coolest thing to go 'Hollywood' on a chick, hopping on the first flight to destination wherever, popping some flowers and and saying 'I love you baby', or something equivalently mushy. It happens in Hollywood, but I have no personal stories of how it's happened in the real world.


3. 'Safety' - Looking at the nifty little screen that shows at this current point in time you are over Greenland. Going back to morbid you think, damn it this heap would slam into the ocean (taking into account my body would last the 7 mile fall to sea level), that water would be cold, damn cold, and really how good is this floaty seat going to do me? I've always thought one of the eeriest / crappiest ways to bite the big one in the history of disasters is to be on the Titanic, a nice warm ship one minute, literally freezing your nuts off the next minute. Same with the airplane.

4. Cocktails and Moonlight Nights - Nothing is worse that when you're a punk ass college kid going to 'backpack Europe' for the first time. Green as all hell behind the ears, you embark on a 10 hour plane ride, you say to yourself why the hell not drink cocktail after cocktail after cocktail. Well it helps you 'sleep', but the next morning is BRUTAL. Somehow that little ass glass of water they bring around is cruel and unusual punishment. Moral of the story is to stick to the water, bring toothpaste, and OD on Tylenol PM.

5. Things to Pass the Time - Yea, shit is going to be delayed, you're going to buy some nonsense Magazine, or book to read if you aren't prepared. I'm past the point of reading Maxim Magazines, and the last time I was burned by a book that appeared at first glance to be a self motivational type book but turned into a 'give all your problems to Jesus' book. This time I come prepared with MP3 player filled to the brim with audio books and tunes to enhance the fun of sitting in airports, you especially gotta love the 3 hop flights. I used to like people watching, but this has become demystified. I once had a great conversation with a Barkeep in Phoenix on a 5 hour layover, but other than that, no noteworthy airport connections.

As George Harrison states, all things must pass. This is especially true when it comes to taking a big ol' airplane assembled from parts from 100's of countries over the big pond. While all the time one could think, please bird, don't land on the wing and cause this flying contraption to malfunction, but rather than think doom and gloom, think about what can be done to pass the time, keep the back from hurting, and be sure to bring the corn nuts, because the food on the flights, well, Benny's treat jar 5 times out of 10 is more appealing.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

The Allied Command Ignored All His Men, And Called on Benny to do it Again

There ain't no world war, and there isn't no Red Baron out, but Benny and I have been out on adventures every night this week thus far. We go on some wicked long walks, fighting the dogs off, looking at dream homes of 'old' money in Hyde Park, he's trimming his nails as they press against the pavement, and I'm conditioning myself for long walks around Deutschland.

Benny walks in front of me, he's becoming very obedient in his walking. So far he hasn't found me a girlfriend, but he said he's working on it! hahahaha --


Other points of interest, the music gods have blessed me with great luck on my upcoming trip to the motherland. We arrive in Berlin the morning of May 11th, after checking out the Brandenburg Gate and Tiergarten Park, the night will bring me to The Kesselhaus to see the Babyshambles, it may be ol' Pete's last tour, that is if he can hold it together till then. Or who knows, it may just be a bunch of media overplay, he's been arrested more than one can count, I know the bobbies over there are tolerant, but damn, come on.

If that's not good enough news, there's some kind of festival or something going on, and low and behold The Divine Comedy, or at least Neil Hannon will grace this place with his presence. Putting this into perspective for readers of the blog, this is like an Arab's trip to Mecca, this man has inspired me, and helped me put life's little turmoils into perspective countless numbers of times. He's where I ripped off 'divineguitar,' and I painstakingly try to learn his tunes on the acoustic guitar. If I can be cheesy for a moment, from a musical perspective, he had me from hello. hahahaha

Well, Benny is conked out here on the couch, and I have to do my due diligence on 'risk management', yes it is painful.
---------------------

"Sometimes this life is like being afloat on a raging sea in a little row boat, just trying not to be washed overboard --- But if you take your chances and you ride your luck and you never never never never give up, those waves will see you safely to a friendly shore." -- DC

Monday, April 10, 2006

Bienviendos Las Estados Unidos

Mike P and Mike D are 'downtown' boys. They get to see everything, while I'm stuck in the middle of blah-ville far away from the action.

Well, as Mike P's Treo shows, the Latinos came out of the woodwork today to protest something. Mike thinks there were upwards of 100,000 of them out and about marching down congress, many with signs that read 'We didn't cross the border, the border crossed us.'


Hmmm, the dreaded protest, kinda reminds me of PCU, the feisty university that protested any and everything. Or how bout the time 6 KKK came down to protest the gay marriage thing, and 6,000 people came to protest the KKK.

Hmmm, it's all confusing.....Ummmm, Viva Mexico!?

Sunday, April 09, 2006

And Though My Stomach may be Empty, I'll Feed my Head from the Horn of Plenty

My 'beach body' became 'beached body' for the day as loads of food was offered up by my wonderful sister and brother in law. I will proclaim that he's easily the best cook I've ever seen (you are right up there too Jennifer :) --

On this side, adding 5 pounds to my belly, we have dinner rolls, green beans, homemade mac and cheese, and some wicked BBQ sauce.


On this side adding 3 pounds to my belly (all meat, 'low carb'), pork loin, sausage, chicken, and a big fat turkey, all thrown on the pit and grilled to perfection.


My my my, a weekend of amazing food, a far cry from my typical tuna helper, pasta in a bag, soup and salad days of the week. I really didn't know what to do with myself this weekend.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Want a plane that Loops the Loop, Me I Want a Hula Hoop

Tonight was Filipino food. I won't pretend to understand what all this stuff was called, so I'll put in terms of how I saw it, and how I ate it. First there were noodles with shrimp. Second there was dirty rice with eggs, sausage, and other 'stuff'. Thirdly there were some crispito / egg role / taquito things that were brilliant. Finally there was some chicken that was soaked in soy sauce, and other barley leaves and stuff. Hell I don't know, it was great though.

The master chef Jennifer, and the chef apprentice Mike D, cookin' from the lands of their heritage, Hawaii and Philippines, respectively.


Later in the evening, the dreaded hula hoop came out, Ashley was doing pretty good, I couldn't seem to get my body moving in that way, so the hoop just fell straight off.


I just liked taking pictures of Ashley in action, it was funny. I had a video of turd boy hooping it up, but I can't seem to find it anymore.


The winner for the evening of the hula hoop competition was The Queen. She could have done this all night long, as she explains she has big hips, which allow for great technique.


I ate myself sick. Holding up one last drumstick for the evening, assuring there were no leftovers for the evening.


Thanks for the food, venue, and fun Jennifer, you rock!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

First Thursday and Pillows

Haven't been down to first Thursday in ages, so Dale, Mr West Point, Ashley, John and I headed down to South Congress to enjoy the festivities.

We made it no further than Doc's, the used to be service station now converted to bar and grill. A great place, cheap beer, and a kick ass patio with cool old school chairs.


From the patio, we seen nothing other than a massive pillow fight break out in the middle of the street. Awesome visual.


That's it --

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

The World is Flat -- A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century

4 stars from Amazon, I suppose you can't please everyone, but this lengthy examination of the 'flat world,' by Thomas L. Friedman, has left me with a optimistic view of globalization, as the effects according the Friedman (and I tend to agree) are positive and essential.

It talks about 10 events that have flattened the world, and the enhancers that speed this process up. The points he explored was the internet, fall of the Berlin wall, outsourcing, and others, and technology are the steroids that expedite the flattening process.

Outsourcing, yea, everyone is afraid of this, I'm not. We used to live in a country full of deviant, progressive people, but comfort, laziness and lack of ambition have cause us to create laws to protect our laziness. If you don't want to have to compete for jobs, the simple solution us American have to embrace are to become smarter and more ambitious, and not take so much for granted.

America is heading into what he describes as 'the perfect storm', and unfortunately it is going to take a crisis to get us steered in the right direction. Many jobs we often scoff about having to do in our day to day lives, there are 100's of Indians and Chinese probably more intelligent than us dying to have a job like this, and the mass populous doesn't even take this into consideration


Make the decision to outsource based on enhancing quality not reducing costs, and companies will do fine. The 'game' is going on and those who hop on the playing field and contribute will enjoy a higher standard of living, and they won't worry about who did what to who.

It also brought a point up about our dumbass president, who cuts science budgets in favor of 'fighting terrorism', weeping about Mexicans crossing the border, and 'preaching' intelligent design. One of these days one of these politicians will grow some balls, and encourage what Freidman says is a win win win win situation. This is to focus our global energies, partner with other countries in devoloping other forms of energy other than fossil fuels. This helps the environment, we won't fund terrorism (drugs don't fund terrorism, oil does), and we won't have to deal with this global energy crisis.

Marx and all of his 'wisdom' (take that as you will) once said that capitalism will destroy everything from national boundaries to religions in search, discovery and opening of new markets. I don't know if it will 'destroy' everything and lead to the shiny happy 'labor state' which totally doesn't take into the human factors of greed, etc. The pie does grow, and as someone takes pieces of the pie, others suffer. Freidman argues that McDonalds and Dell's help keep countries out of war. He makes the point that countries that have McDonalds have not went to war with each other (excluding civil war), simply because there is too much at stake. Let's take Dell and these MNC's in India, if India gets in any sort of skirmish with Pakistan, Dell / Microsoft and others will say bye bye to outsourcing call centers and other things of this nature. This has extremely powerful economic and political implications that tend to be helpful.

A great read, highly recommend, curl up, dive in and alleviate misconceptions, at least for myself. When the Chinese start pounding on keyboards, I'm not going to be fucked, and I'm going to teach tough love to my kids, because when they are grown, there are going to have to deal with a highly talented global workforce.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Monday, April 03, 2006

Beach Body -- Here I Come

I am an overweight American. I used to have a six pack abs back in high school, but since then the fixation with Cheeseburgers, Lasagna, chicken fingers and other goodies have taken prescedence.

Enter Beachbody.com, a very impressive cardio dvd workout Mr Ryan let me borrow. I did the first exercise tonight and it's a fantastic video filled with punches, kicks and stretches, and yes I had to pause a few times to catch my breath.

I hope I don't look as gay as Richard Simmons doing these excercises, I waited till the beast and the bee were out of the house before I popped it in. Benny the doggie gave me a few weird looks while I was jumping around.

Aronald used to be the shittiest actor in the world (some could still debate that I suppose), but he said the key to success was to envision what you wanted to be and make it happen. I don't want to have a huge beer belly anymore, I want to be flexible, and I want to get in shape, just to feel better and have more energy in general.


Wish me luck in my adventures, once I get a washboard stomach, I'll say what the hell is next? But overall getting in great shape will help in day to day struggles as the natural stress fighting endorphines that come out while exercising will hopefully make my life more productive.

Thanks Ryan, you rock!

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Living is Easy with eyes Closed, Misunderstandings All you See

Post Day wedding antics brought us to the Janak farm for some communing with nature. Situated in a beautiful location between Hallettsville and Shiner sits St. Mary's Church and the Janak farm. Always a pleasure to see those lovely folks and hang out.

Mike D seemed to love the pigs, especially the smell. Mike D was lookin' all uncomfortable not wanting to go on our walk, but I made him get in front of these 'cute' little piggies and strike a pose.


Jenny and Kristin were busy picking strawberries, and I chimed in and helped after a few dirty looks (naw, not really, yea I did help, but no dirty looks). As I'm blogging I'm reaping the benefits with a strawberry banana smoothie.


Every time I venture out to the farm, I'm reminded of Ween's 12 Golden Country Hits, a classic album by the strange boys.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

See? Billy Idol Gets It

A page out of Robbie Hart's book, the protagonist on The Wedding Singer. Billy Idol understands love, and so does D-Dog and The Crystal Chandelier.

The 'Robert and Guest' invitation turned into a slew of city folk invadin' the wedding, actin' the fool the majority of the night. I don't believe we sat out a single song the entire evening. I recall one song I was hopping across the dance floor, avoiding kids, parents and fossils.

There's the lovely couple, thanks Aya in advance for the wonderful pictures. Dustin, mr white coat, lookin' all pimp, dropped some poundage for the wedding, kudos buddy, you looked 'hot' --- hahahaha-- Dustin's favorite word is "BITCH." He usually says it after 40 some odd beers.


Wedding began for me late, as Yasu and Aya get lost coming from San Marcos, so I decide to drink dollar cups at Howard's with G-man and Timmy and some of his crew. By the time Yasu arrives at 7, I'm 3 sheets to the wind.


The crew, Mel and Bob, Mr Belvadere, Queen Bee, Kristin, Mr Fat Head, Shaggy (Ashley) and John, Yasu and Aya. Talk about a crew that lite up that dance floor. Beasts new girlfriend must think I dance like the goofiest white boy she's ever seen on the planet.


The heat came down and the sweats came up. Just check out that inspiration, I mean perspiration on my face. When the grand march came around Kristin grabbed me by the elbow, and said I was 'elbowing,' instead of pitting. WHEW!


The country band playing had nothing on when Nate Dogg and Beast tore the stage up with some Greenday and Sublime covers. We went to the front of the stage and acted like rock star groupies. I even met Mr No More Weights up there, and had a lovely chat with him and his wife.


Grand march kicks in and I appreciate the pictures sent. Often I overlook the pandemonium that goes on in these things. If you not a rural Texan, you don't really know this bohemian ritual.


Speakin' of grand march, one is not complete without a bottle of moonshine floatin' around. Well we put a massive hit on that bottle as it passed by. I busted it against my tooth pretty hard by accident, it wasn't fun. The lovely Aya seemed to enjoy the drink too!


Later in the evening this group discovered Shiner Bock, the beer laxative. I hope they weren't....ummmm......nevermind......the next morning.


All in all the wedding was a blast. You guys are great. Beast, your turn next! Tag, you're it.

------
Here's a nice video of the grand march. I imagine Yasu describing this to his family back home in Japan. Well, you see, there are these rednecks, and they drink a lot of beer, and they get all drunk, and they stomp around and yelling really crazy things.