Friday, June 29, 2007

ode to a laptop bag

My laptop bag is nice
It really is quite great
If it were an attractive lady
I'd take it on a date
But that's be kinda awkward
If she just held my laptop
People would look at her funny
And I'd ask her to stop
Oh my laptop bag has pockets
It really does have much
I put lots of things in them
Like pens and paper and such
It's even got a bottle holder
And a case for my laptop too
It hold my awesome laptop
Better than other bags do

Thank you.

Monday, June 25, 2007

the reasoning behind impulse

(Note: this post isn't funny)

When a certain action elicits a reaction of an instant nature, we view that as a natural reaction, one that cannot be controlled. But, to do this, we must concede that we lack control over our body as a whole. Indeed this is true, but we have a great amount of control- we can force our heart rate higher by exercising, we can slow it down by sleeping. We can breathe fast or slow, we can blink quickly or go to a certain point without blinking. There is very little we can't control, so why do we cede the natural reactions?

Perhaps the most evident argument is that we cannot control this natural reaction because it is unexpected. I agree, it is unexpected, but I disagree, I say it can be controlled, but not instantly, and not without will power. Impulse, reactions, they are the beast in man- they are things we must overcome because we are, indeed above the beast and unwilling to return to the lows, as said John Stuart Mill. Many say that we live in a society in which everyone is allowed to thrive, but truly they are not- we can easily see the swine, who roll in mud because they know no better; even if they did, they do not understand what better truly is. But we can also see the elegant homo sapiens, those who do because they can, and know that they are on a higher plane from which descending would be truly shameful. They have overcome the beast, they no longer cower at the proverbial lightning, indeed they expect it.

I cannot accept that it's impossible to avoid natural reactions because I know of some I can control. I have total control over my entire being in most situations because I strive to be conscious of myself in relation to everything around me. I could simply lay back and take it, reacting as I wish, letting myself be carried by the whims of nature, but I refuse because I am one of mankind. We have stopped reacting to nature, instead we control it, manipulate it, learn its patterns and use them to our advantage. If we then allow certain aspects of nature to overcome us, we have failed to understand the level to which we must rise.

This is not to say impulse is bad, for in our early years, we all have impulse we have not learned to control ourselves, we have not learned enough to react to every situation as would perhaps do us the most good. But, as we grow and learn, we can string together experiences and learn how to react in a new situation by assimilation of past experiences, a balance of what works in one situation and another based on how this situation by which we are faced compares to those previous situations, this is how we grow. This is how we exceed our expectations. We do not have to rely only on our personal experience, that is why we learn history, is to learn and be able to draw on past experience, not simply to know what happened, but to know what will happen. More importantly, we learn it to know how to stop or react to what will happen, we will know what worked, what failed, we will be better than our predecessors, and our progeny will be yet greater.

I have considered it, and I see impulse as simply the beginning- we start by reactions, we control those reactions, we adapt these actions to new situations and thus we survive. In this wise, we are no better than animals, but we are uniquely capable of creating to solve problems as no animal is. We are able to not just use tools, but use the best tools available, we are able to further our understanding through research and simulation, something animals lack. At the base we do share the learning process with animals, but we are humans because we take this learning process and kick it in to overdrive, going beyond what should be capable. That is how humankind wins. We exceed nature's expectations, and in doing that we can learn to control it, use it, and facilitate it for our own uses.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

i'd like to dedicate this post

To styx's "Come Sail Away" because that's what is playing right now. I've got to be free... free to face the life that's ahead of me. Very inspiring.

My nephew is about the cutest baby in the world, even if he cries more than anything else. He has a lot of squeaks and hiccups and occasionally an almost-giggle, but generally, he's crying. Or about to cry, but this morning he was smiling a lot. he does this funny thing where he just sticks his tongue in and out like a snake- I really don't know why but it's something I haven't seen in any other baby.

It's nice to have him over because I miss playing with babies. The last baby I really got to play with was Emily's niece and that stopped when Emily and I stopped dating, which was one of the big disappointments for me. I know it's like.. four years at least until I might be a dad, but I think I'll do a good job, if only because I'll let my wife take care of all the gross stuff. Hahahaha... yeah, my wife is going to hate me. I actually wrote a letter to my future self (seven years older- that's 25) and I'm giving it to this guy who will mail it to me in seven years and I'll read it. I wrote a lot of funny stuff and left some money and my expired license and BYU ID card. I guess I'll have to get a new one this fall.

Little Bro gets in today, as does G-Ma Mississippi. Exciting stuff. Uncle B and Aunt R came over yesterday, as did cousin J, and we had a nice big lunch of burgers and dawgs and sun chips. Man, I love sun chips. I got a haircut, unfortunately, and went and got groceries for my experiment on my personal finance blog. I'm really satisfied with what I bought, and I'm sure I'll be able to surpass my wildest expectations in terms of how long the groceries last.

Friday, June 22, 2007

being a working man

I remember the days of yester-semester, right when everything started to go right and I felt fulfilled and a bit overwhelmed by everything, but it was okay because I knew and believed in what I was doing. This is kind of how I'm feeling now. I love having a job, though not necessarily the job I'm at, but I don't dislike it. It's good experience, and I'll have contacts to add on my resume now that will be solid contacts. Not that my dad wasn't a solid contact, it's just nice to move beyond the apparent nepotism.

Tomorrow is a full day- helping someone move, getting groceries, taking care of recycling, getting a hair cut, writing enough blogs to make up for lost time and enough that I'll be able to post once every other day and not feel guilty. I kind of plan on switching between this blog and my personal finance blog so that if you go to both, you'll never not hear from me! Except on sundays, I'll use those to write more content and to rest. I feel like I really want to become a full-fledged blogger, unfortunately, in about six months, I will be on a mission with no access to blogger, unable to hold on to my amazing posts. A two year hiatus, highlighted by me coming back and posting ridiculously long stories. I hope I don't turn into that. I want to be this blogger- this blogger intrigues me, because it is me in so many ways, but at the same time it is simply a projection of me, somewhat distorted by the medium and lack of personalization.

My main concern is my gmail account. I have two, and I love the names. I don't want to lose that just because I've been away two years. Though, I might be able to check email- it really depends on the Mission President where I go, though by then, computers might be standard. Maybe missionary blogs will be too- giant blog rings of missionaries sharing stories and tips and, ah who am I kidding. It would be really hard to pull that off. Turns out google will delete my account after 9 months of inactivity. So if I can't use it on the mission, I will have to give my parents the password and make sure they sign in and jiggle the mouse periodically. I really like my emails- d.n.m***** at gmail and dan.theman.m***** at gmail are by far the only addresses I'll ever need, in my opinion, one personal, the other professional. I don't know if I need the asterisks, but I'll take it like I typed, so deal with it.

To be fair, this isn't my main concern, but it's the main concern I want to blog about because it's somewhat relevant to the blog itself. I'm actually more concerned about being financially and mentally and spiritually prepared, but a lot of that is just personal and I'd feel really weird giving that out in a blog. But not so much in real life, with friends, I think it's easier to discuss that kind of stuff. it'd be weird to talk about my gmail accounts with kids I usually hang out with.

Working is nice though. I am really a guy who enjoys work, as weird as that is.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

the sweetest thing

I'm a working man, working 8-5 figuring out everything I need to do, and overall I'm enjoying it. Though, admittedly I am working at Greenspoint which is at times a bit scary, but overall it's not too bad because the office I'm working at has plenty of places for lunch right next to it, and soon I'll probably just bring my own lunch.
The only thing that I could really ask for is my own car, but even that isn't too important because I'm able to ride with my dad or mom. As soon as every who's over goes back home, I'll probably be able to take my mom's car to work. I do love having my sister and nephew over- he's so adorable, everything he does just makes me smile. He's really entranced by lights and fans, and we have plenty of them for him to stare at.
At my work they have these amazing coffee machines- they have built in packets of different kinds of coffee, but also they have hot chocolate and a milky way based hot cocoa. I've come to be addicted to the milky way based cocoa, because it's just so good. I might have to get my own mug, because when the door opens up for you to put these packets in, if your styrofoam cup is too big, it will crush the edge.
I should be getting my new laptop bag by this weekend, which I am super excited about. It's gotten rave reviews at and I'm very impressed with all the technical specs- everyone says it's big enough to hold a lot of stuff, but it never gets too bulky. Sounds like the perfect bag, but I'll be the real judge of that. I'm obsessively tracking it at FedEx because I'm a little too involved in delivery sometimes. But I also love tracking things- watching stock trends, shipping orders, migration patterns, and os much more. There's so many interesting things, mostly I get my maps and trend diagrams from but I just go with whatever my Google Reader is giving me at the time.
I also obsessively read The Consumerist because it intrigues me, but I really want to start reading The Economist because I love economics with an unholy passion and it seems to be the highest quality magazine with the best written articles widely available for a reasonable price. That was a rather long sentence, I cannot deny that, though this one might turn out longer because it is, in fact, an observation of the former, which observation must indeed exceed the observed lest such observation becomes null and is simply a restatement of the previous sentence when in fact the observation must observe the previous sentence as well as itself. I love being intelligent.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

i'm really enjoying my wiki

I've added an FAQ, and dating application, and have fixed some of the formatting issues that existed previously. That page just fits my sense of humor so well- something about it is just so me.

I'm trying to get more people interested in this blog. That and my Echo Boomer Finance blog. I really enjoy blogging, and I wish more people would read them- I've posted facebook listings, I import notes to my facebook, and I just try and get my name out there, in hopes that people will recognize me and like what I say.

I'm going to try and move more towards writing- long articles, reviews, advice (for the finance blog) and so forth, in hopes that moving away from the journal-entry style of my posts will make this blog more... viewable. But I won't be moving completely away, don't fret. I'll still have witty insights and lifetime updates.

Pictures of my nephew to come.

Friday, June 15, 2007

hello people who have stumbled on to my site

First of all, thank you blograters. I love you guys. Hopefully more people will see this site and enjoy my writing. Or, if you're here from my facebook market posting, thank you too!

Now, inter-blaggers, you may be wondering, what does this kid think he's doing, what with all his blogginating and so forth? Well, I like to write. About everything. That's this blogs unifying theme: what interests me. Because I know what's best for me to write about so that when you read it it doesn't suck too much. I've scoured the archives and have chosen a sampling of what I have done. If you just want to read a few, make sure to go to 2, 3, 8 and 12. No, I will not rearrange them, they are in reverse chronological order.

  1. Things that are always funny pt. 1 pt deux
  2. The Cancun Story
  3. I expose Dave Grohl and the guy from Taking Back Sunday as the same person.
  4. My take on the Great RPS Debate. Just a note, I almost won 25,000 for rock paper scissors up at BYU, but lost to a cheater who didn't let his next opponent watch his previous match. And the contest went by the dumb rules, and I was quoted in a local newspaper denouncing the tournament's un-American rules.
  5. One of my longest posts. I had a lot in it, and I really like to read it. Somewhat comical.
  6. Pre and Post Thanksgiving assessments
  7. My Life, at one point
  8. I do more and more posts that are just pictures with comments. I like them. Especially the second one- If nothing else, read that one.
  9. The BYU conundrum
  10. I am calling the last Harry Potter book out.
  11. My 50th post. It' a little introspective, but I really like it because that was a time in my life where I was changing a lot.
  12. Most cocaine in a breakfast cereal.

You can read the rest of the archives, if you wish. There are far more posts than I would have liked that are just a few sentences, but there are a few that are worth reading if you've thoroughly enjoyed any of the posts I've listed. I hope that my blog can provide a source of inspiration, of warmth, and of humor over this summer and upcoming fall.

just by way of inroduction...

my new personal finance blog. won't be as frequently updated as this one:


Thursday, June 14, 2007

a post from the past aka the classics subtitled better than i've ever been

Okay, anyone remember xanga? I found my old one, and I'm not going to give you the address because it's entirely the writings of an extremely hormonal kid who had no clue what he was doing. But I did find a couple pretty good entries which will be filler when I run out of ideas on this blog. So here's one about dentists, enjoy!

I'm beginning to be highly suspicious of dentists. Okay, I am suspicious of anyone who, for a profession, chooses poking people in various body cavities or parts. But, Dentists especially... I mean, I don't think they do anything for anyone that doesn't have bleeding gums (They also have a habit of giving these to people... more on that later), cavities, or general tooth decay. First, at the dentists, you sit in a chair similar to the ones used when experimenting on animals. Not that I'd know.... dang it. Scratch that last part. But, then you get laid back, and a handy assistant comes to talk to you about your life, gives you candy and has a great time! Oh wait, that's a toned down bachelor party. Please excuse me. Really, an assistant comes and talks about stuff, then pokes you in the mouth with a piece of metal. Now, I have a question. If dentists encourage flossing and brushing, why are they poking us in the mouth with metal objects? That just doesn't seem to follow.

Okay, then the lady asks you what flavor you want for the polishing of your teeth. I imagine teeth get dirty very quickly, because I have never seen my teeth shiny. I suppose this is one thing dentists do to confuse people: tell them they are going to polish their teeth, and then people flip when they don't shine, so they go pay for expensive toothbrushes, teeth whiteners, shoe buffers, etc. But yes, then she puts your selected flavor (fun fact: all the flavors are exactly the same. You just think it is caramel apple.) On a whirring equivalent of a shoe polish applier, and proceeds to talk to you, this is rather unintelligent. If you try and talk while you have your mouth open for a long time, you notice that water builds up, and when you try and talk, "gleeking" occurs, generally right into the assistants face (or at least, if you're aiming for it). Even after the first five times, she doesn't get that if she asks you how old you are, she's going to get a faceful of spit. Maybe they've become numb to it. Maybe they're brainwashed in assistant's school.

I love how they make comments about how your teeth look. Why? Because every visit it's the same exact thing. "Well, it looks like you have fillings on your molars." I really couldn't thank her enough for pointing out what is on my little sheet of paper of what goes on at every check up. She then writes that down on my new check up sheet. She notes that the fillings have been worn away, and she'll have to refill. I don't think she got that that was what happened last time, and the time before that. Perhaps you should try something other than wasting my money?

I love the logic... you've got parts of your tooth missing, so we're going to put this non-tooth stuff in your tooth to make up for it. Then, when they put it in, they stick a giant radiation gun right in there just to make sure the sealant will harden. It's really comforting to hear two people discussing whether the twenty second mark is two beeps of the gun or three. I even told them (with violent gleeking) it was two. I mean, it doesn't make sense that it would be three! That's like asking if the penny candy is a quarter. Real comforting. Then, they have the nerve to send in another guy to poke at my teeth. He does it more quickly and professionally, and I wonder; why couldn't they send him in first? Lots less bleeding. Then, they ended with the classic keep brushing. No flossing comment this time though. I guess by not flossing very enthusiastically, I got them to give up. Hah! I win again.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

My Life is Good

So, I've been chilling at home, not particularly happy that my dad has been working at Baker-Hughes, and thus I lose money not being able to work for him. Granted, he's making a lot more money, money which will pay for lots of stuff for me, presumably. This next week he's going out of town, again, I won't be working, and my mom will be at Girls' Camp so I won't even have a car.

This really doesn't matter to me as much as I'm making it seem, I just need to fill blog space really. Soon, I'm going to post pictures of my desk setup, of which I am very proud. Organization is one of my favorite things, even if I only do it sometimes to stave off sleep. Or to help me get to sleep. For me, organization and sleep go hand in hand, which if you look at how I don't make my bed ever, doesn't make a lot of sense. I figure, if I half-heartedly cover my bed with the big blanket (comforter?) and the pillows are on top of it, it's good. Occasionally (re: once every other month) I do make it semi- well. Or at least I did in college, but it was so much easier then- I could easily reach across the bed.

I hate shaving. It's such a dumb taboo that facial hair= denigration. I know, I know, Honor Code, Honor Code, and so long as it remains in there I'll remain clean-shaven. I refused to vote for the BYUSA president, however if one comes along promising to rock the boat and get rid of the facial hair clause, I'm voting for them. Also, I hate tipping. I know it's really nice and everything, but why? Why can't employers do something like... pay a living wage? Not make them rely on tips?

I hate social expectations, or what's the sociological term? Mores. I had to look that up via my Sociology Majoring sister. I learned that term a while ago in Mr. Rice's Sociology class, but I really don't know why. That describes a great deal of the extra-curricular classes in high school. Just another reason to get out a year early like I did.

I wrote something on why I don't vote (YET), and I think maybe I'll post it here sometime soon. Who knows? I have a lot of ideas for posts- Book Reviews, Original Writings, Re-posts from a long time ago, and my computer set-up pictures, of course. Maybe even a list of blogs I've been reading (obsessing over) this past little while. I'm not short of material, just time. And motivation. If you're reading this via facebook, go to my blog link and leave a comment, or leave a comment on my facebook, or something. I just like to know it's not just me reading this.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Only From the U of U

comes Mouse Party. Now I want people to stop using drugs because I'm sick of the ridiculous lengths people go to to demonstrate the effects of drugs. At least there aren't eggs and various plates being smashed. I'd much rather deal with this kind of anti-drug campaign. I mean, when we have to turn to Canada for the War on Drugs.... I just don't know.

Also, I started my own wiki all about me. Well, not really. It's mostly made up, though some parts contain various bits of truth I think. You can visit it at My favorite line is "Most Cocaine in a Breakfast Cereal." I don't know if it's ever been used, but I googled it and apparently no one else has. But it gets me every time. Can you imagine that on a saturday morning cartoon commercial? A drug-riddled mascot for cereal? Well, it's not that different, if you think about that. Tony the Tiger, Captain Crunch, that Cocoa Puff Bird, the Trix Rabbit, and so forth.

Most Cocaine in a Breakfast Cereal.