27 February 2011

Awash in lists

My life is awash in lists.  I can only blame my borderline compulsive need for lists for this situation.  This near-compulsion has taken on a life of its own, thanks to the internet.  I have a host of sites where I can list things:

amazon.com - books and crap I don't need
shelfari.com - my own library site and a pounding reminder that I'm not reading as much as I did last year
dailymile.com - a record of the running I used to do and the running that Fatty is currently not doing
nikerunning.com - see above (double the punishment, double the fun!)

Then there are the lists of blogs I read, all bookmarked and organized according to theme.  I ask you, is it wrong to be following/stalking 35 food blogs?

And then there are the lists of songs/albums/artists on my iTunes account...why is this one of my most played songs?
Strange, indeed
Maybe it's time to find a new song....

25 February 2011

A Friday Funny

Sometimes I wonder if I'm still a twelve year old.  Why?  Because of videos like this:

Awesome!  Makes me laugh every time I see it!  And I know, it's terrible how the cheerleader got mowed down and we should all be grateful that she wasn't hurt.  Yeah, I get that.  But man, it's just funny watching this thing.

And ignore the banter of the newsreaders...I think they all must have come out of the KSL School of Happy Banter.  It's awful. But watch the video again.  It'll make you laugh.

23 February 2011

Something I miss

Maybe it's the fact that this Midwestern winter seems like it will never end or maybe it's the fact that it's Wednesday and it feels like the.longest.week.ever, but I realize there's something missing in my life.  Running.

There, I've said it.  I've been a lousy runner since my last half marathon several months ago.  I think I've run a grand total of 12 miles since then and I feel lousy as a result.  My addiction to carbs is beginning to show and that's not good.  I could cover that when I was running 20 miles a week. 

So I've got to get back out there.  I'm admitting it here that I've been a lousy runner and that I want to get better.  I want to run again.  I know, it's up to me.  If anyone would like to offer any inspiration or shame to get me going, please comment.
I look like an idiot when I run but I'm ready to look like an idiot again.

19 February 2011

"With malice toward none, with charity for all..."

If I was clever or resourceful enough, I'd turn the title of this post into a contest - some kind of clever around who can tell me who said it and a bonus for when it was said.  Alas, I am not, so I'll just tell you.

"With malice toward none, with charity for all..." was part of Abraham Lincoln's second inaugural address.  He spoke these words Saturday, March 4, 1865, about six weeks before his assassination.

It is safe to say that I am currently captivated by Lincoln.  It's bordering on the obsessive.  I've read three incredible books about him and I am amazed by this humble, simple, and brilliant man.

I am in awe of his astute ability to assess the character of those around him and his nearly boundless ability to forgive and see through the bluster in which we often cloak ourselves.  It was that insight that allowed him to essentially save our nation.  This was dramatically illustrated in the book I just finished reading about the Lincoln presidency.  Team of Rivals by historian Doris Kearns Goodwin is an absolutely brilliant read.  It's not light reading.  It is engrossing and thought-provoking and worth every moment invested in it.  READ THIS BOOK!

I'm so obsessed with Lincoln and his life that I've decided we are going to take part of our Spring Break in Springfield, exploring the Lincoln Museum and the Library.  I am all kinds of excited. 

16 February 2011

21 - Lucky 21!

I've made it a habit now here in the Den of noting significant occasions with their corresponding number and today is no different.

Today, Our Lady of BYU, our firstborn child, celebrates her 21st birthday.  This is a momentous day, to be sure.  Now, in Mormon culture, turning 21 doesn't have the same "Go drink legally!" implications as it does in our "Snooki/drunken whore" pop culture world, and for that, I'm grateful.

Unlike the parents of most reality TV show contestants, such as the aforementioned Snooki train wreck, I am so proud of my daughter.  She's pretty awesome.  She's doing a really good job of figuring out who she is and who she wants to become.  She surprises me with the depth of her devotion to the BYU Cougars.  She's a fierce, fierce fan!  She's got a sense of humor.  She makes us, her parents, very happy and like I said, we're really proud of her.

So, here's to you, on your 21st birthday, my daughter!  You're still my little girl.  Happy birthday.

14 February 2011

Anti-V. D.

It's time for my annual position statement on Valentine's Day.  As the title of this post suggests, I'm against it.  I guess the title is subject to interpretation and just to be clear, in this case, "Anti-V. D." is a reflection of my feelings about Valentine's Day.  And for the record, I'm also against venereal disease as well as all other STD's, but I digress.

This image, which you may remember from my 2010 Valentine's Day post, continues to sum up my feelings about this day:
Manipulative and shallow.  That pretty much sums it up.  Let me be clear - just because I find this day ridiculous doesn't mean I don't love my wife.  I do.  I just don't need a consumer hijacked day to make me proclaim that love.  The stunningly patient and mighty fine SML knows how much I love her.  She's beyond amazing and I can't imagine my life without her.  She is the best.  She puts up with a lot and I am forever grateful for her patience, her love, and for making me want to be a better man each and every day.

And she still found it in her heart to make Mongolian Beef and Red Velvet Whoopie Pies tonight.  By all that's holy, how did I get so lucky?

12 February 2011

Heading home

I used to do five-day trips, and even longer ones, like they were nothing.  Easy peasy.  Not so much anymore.  I am more than ready to get home and I'll be on a plane in a few hours, doing exactly that.

This has been a good trip but a long one.  And I've learned something...five years of winters, winters that have gotten progressively worse with each year, in Chicago has made me really uncomfortable in warmer weather.  As I was driving around Phoenix yesterday, the outside temperature was 72 or 73 degrees.  I had the A/C in the car blasting and I was sweating.  I was not wearing Chicago winter clothers.  I was dressed for the temperature but it was liking to kill me.  I thought it was hot.  What is wrong with me?  Or better yet, what has living in Chicago done to me?

10 February 2011

Middle of a five day turn

Just a quick post from the Minneapolis Red Carpet Club as I am in the middle of a five day turn.  This much I can tell you, Chicago is Miami compared to Minneapolis.  It is unbelievably cold here.  Ridiculous! Next stop Phoenix.  Get me out of here! 

05 February 2011

A little theatre

From time to time, as parents, we've tried to show our three children that there's more to the world than what's found on their iPods and cable TV.  We're fortunate to live near the Second City and it's no slouch when it comes to cool cultural offerings - the Art Institute of Chicago never ceases to amaze!  And our food scene rocks!  So we've been able to take advantage of some great things here. So, last night, we dipped our collective toes into the theater scene once again.  We attended this:

It's the 25th anniversary tour and it did not disappoint.  Say what you will about theater for the masses.  There's just something about the spirit of this musical that gets me every time.  Sure, it's a little bombastic in parts and one could argue it really sugar coats Hugo's original work.  But, come on, have you read that book all the way through?  I have.  It took me 13 years.  That is no exaggeration.  13 years.  And I typically read close to 30 books a year.  That book liked to have killed me.  So, bless those Frenchmen who created this musical.  It still doesn't make up for the French's inexplicable love and adoration of Jerry Lewis (don't even get me started on the Germans adoration of the Hoff), but it's a start.

We flew Our Lady of BYU home so all five of us could attend.  It was an early 21st birthday present for her.  It's good to have her home, if only for a couple of days.  With CAL finishing up her registration for BYU-I, we don't have too many days of all five us together left.  It was a good night.

We're still buried in snow here and I'm holed up in the basement, writing a presentation that I need to give later this week.  Took a break to update the blog and another break coming shortly in order to watch the BYU basketball game.  Gotta see what Jimmer does today.

01 February 2011

Snowmageddon 2011

Well, it's here.  Snowmageddon 2011.  The local weather wonks have been salivating over this impending storm for the last couple of days.  Most of the weather people have now run out of dramatic superlatives to describe this storm.

If they wanted to freak out the city, they've done it.  The stunningly patient and mighty fine SML and I went to the grocery store last night to pick up some things and what we encountered was unbelievable!  The aisles of the store were jammed and people were acting as if they were under evacuation orders.  And the avaricious store management had posted signs throughout the store, with sayings like, "Blizzard Warning!  Do you have what you need?"  Curiously, these signs were placed over many of their most expensive items.  Nice.

So suffice to say, it's madness here.  Good times.