30 September 2008

The Infamous All-Nighter

Sometimes I feel like Spongebob Squarepants in this episode:


I don't actually expect you to spend 10 minutes watching the episode, but if you were to watch it, you would see what I was doing on Sunday night and Monday morning and afternoon.

Unlike Spongebob's, the essay I had to write was fairly complex. And it took me at least 16 hours. But it's done. And it may have been the last school-related all-nighter I'll make myself pull as a college student (undergrad).

29 September 2008

Quote of the Day

“This is a huge cow patty with a piece of marshmallow stuck in the middle of it and I am not going to eat that cow patty.”

Representative Paul Broun, Republican of Georgia, as quoted in the New York Times.

23 September 2008

The Tortoise and the Hare

This year, the weather has seemed to change by the calendar. Yesterday was the first day of fall, and it rained. And you know what I have to say to that? Bring it on. Last winter was so long, that I didn't even get used to warm, summer weather. It snowed in June, for goodness' sake.

Anyway, despite the cold air last night, Cody and I went out for an evening run. I guess I should qualify that better. Cody went for a run, and I went for a sprint.

When we were in Hawaii, I was reminded on a daily basis how much farther he can walk in one step than I can. The length of his stride and lack of length in my own was especially apparent on our hike to and from Hanauma Bay.

Last night's run was about two miles. I was able to keep up with him for the first half. On the second leg, however, he really put some distance between us.

Then, in true "The Tortoise and the Hare" form, Cody stopped to take a nap (I mean walk) while I continued at my pace for the rest of the run.

Naturally, I thought I had the race in the bag. (I've always been a believer in Aesop's morals.) Then, one block from home, I heard a runner approaching from behind. Cody, wanting to dispell all belief in Aesop's fables, beat me, the tortoise, in the last Provo block of the race.

The only thing keeping the original fable alive is the dissimilarity between Cody and the hare, and myself and the tortoise. Tonight's race was more like a race between a giraffe and a donkey. A quick Google search has revealed that a giraffe's top speed is about 37 miles per hour. Another quick Google search has found that nobody cares how fast a donkey can run.

21 September 2008

The "Shark" Card

A while back, I visited one of my favorite blogs and stumbled upon a competition of sorts.

In short, all I had to do to "win" was be one of the first 100 people to leave a comment on this post. I was number 43!

Winning entailed receiving a postcard in the mail from the blogger. There were three postcard options, and we (the first 100) got to choose which one we wanted. You can read that post if you're really interested in the nitty-gritty.

After I won, I checked the mail like the old lady from the BYU classic, The Mailbox, anxiously awaiting the arrival of my free postcard.

When my personalized postcard finally came, I jumped like a missionary getting his travel plans in the MTC.

Here's what Mr. Lewis sent me.

The text reads:

Hey, Michael-

Thanks for reading my blog. Here's your free postcard to pay you back for the time you've wasted or will hopefully continue to waste on my blog. Good call on the "shark" card. Most people chose the polar bear, but this one's my favorite. You're obviously smarter than most people...as am I.

-Shane Lewis

I make a point to read the above postcard text out loud to Cody on a nightly basis. In the beginning, it was out of excitement, but now it's out of my sheer desire to annoy!

(Here he is, studying to earn his Home and Family Living minor.)

The tables have turned, though, and it's now Cody who reads the card to me. Except, I think it's more like a recitation than a reading. We've both got it memorized.

My cousin (and others) was (were) right, it is great to get good mail.

Thanks, stlewis.blogspot.com, for livening up my nightly routine.

17 September 2008

Again, with the wallet!

Some of you may remember this tragic day of 10 months ago.

It happened again today, only this time it was inside a folder I haven't opened since Sunday. How it got there, I'll never know.

If you ever see this wallet lying around, please let me know. It will save me hours of stress/kicking myself in the pants for forgetting where I left it.

14 September 2008

Don't Go Anywhere Without a Camera

(Warning, this is a marathon post.)

It's been quite a weekend.

To kick it off, UCLA came to BYU on Saturday and got shut out, with the Cougs winning, 59-0 (their worst loss in 79 years)! Take that, Bruins.

As the icing on the cake, one of my favorite bands (Rooney) came to Spoon Me (a frozen yogurt shop) in Provo.

Spoon Me



In Provo!

Rooney and I have been friends since 2003, when they released their first album.

Now, five years and one album later, I've finally seen them live. And they only charged $3 at the door.

I really don't know how Spoon Me, a frozen yogurt shop, scored Rooney. And don't ask me how the concert was financed. All I can do is thank my lucky stars that I was informed, and that I was there.

In fact, we got there earlier than most fans to make sure we got optimum placement in front of the stage. The only "people" there with us at 5:45 PM when we arrived to wait (just under four hours before Rooney went on) were FRESHMEN, and we got to stand amid them ALL NIGHT LONG.

At least our placement in front of the stage was optimum.

I was actually right at Robert Schwartzman's feet.

This is Robert Schwartzman.

You may recognize him from The Princess Diaries. He's also the lead vocalist in Rooney. I think he sounds a little like David Cassidy when he sings.

That night, he kicked my elbow and stepped on my hand several times. To make up for it, he shook my hand at the end of the show. I was going for a high five, but genuinely accepted the shake.

As you could probably guess, the freshmen were the only drawback of the night. We did our best to put up with their screams, and their shouts, and their mindless chatter during the two openers' performances. Luckily, once Rooney got on stage the mindless chatter went away. They couldn't "chatter," 'cause they were too busy producing their constant, little-girl-like screaming.

My ears were introduced to new frequencies and decibels of screaming yesterday. I felt like I was at a Miley Cyrus/Hannah Montana concert, and that all of the Jonas Brothers had just walked on stage to sing a surprise song, and that the song was introduced by Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom (talk about a tween dream come true). That's how bad the screaming was.

I regained full hearing sometime Sunday afternoon. It was worth the temporary loss.

On Sunday, Cody and I team taught Sunday School. Team teaching is the best thing that's ever happened to the Sunday School program, and I look forward to much more of it through the duration of my new calling.

After Church, things were pretty quiet...until this walked by.

He (or she) turned heads all over the street.

The creature must be going out for The Quill and the Sword.

I find it most disturbing that after the sighting, it disappeared into an apartment building across the street from mine. Who are these people?

After Doña Sebastiana walked by, things calmed down for a while.

Life got exciting again at 7:30 PM, when we celebrated my friend Cory's birth. Happy Birthday, Cory!

His mom sent him some masks to celebrate with. We put them to full use.

Meet my new roommate, Danny. He's the unmasked one...or is it the one with the face on his shoulder?

If there's anything that will mold this post into a cohesive piece, I think it would be the title: "Don't Go Anywhere Without a Camera." You never know what you'll miss.

13 September 2008

Back to School

I know school started about two weeks ago, but the start of the new semester coincided perfectly with the crashing of my computer.

The computer spent a week in the "shop," where computer "technicians" racked up countless (and expensive) hours "fixing" my computer's "issues." (All those quotation marks remind me of Chris Farley on SNL's "Weekend Update.")

The computer is now in working order, but missing everything but my music, for which I had to pay one arm and one leg to save.

Now, with two missing appendages, I'm returning to true desktop, push-button publishing. Without a right arm, I'll never be fully accepted in India, and typing will take much longer, but I'll manage. Thanks, Cougar Computer, for wholeheartedly ripping me off.

Okay. I've got that out of my system and can move on to something that relates better to this post's title, "Back to School."

School started two weeks ago and I'm finally taking all the GEs I pushed aside when I decided as a freshman (five years ago) that I wanted to jump right into my major courses.

Naturally, I managed to knock out most of my GEs along the way, but I saved the true 100 level courses for this, my senior year. What courses, you ask? Biology 100 and Physical Science 100, the two most dreaded classes in the GE catalog.

Besides those challenging courses, I'm taking Latin American Studies 495 (my senior seminar), Philosophy 201 (GE/for my minor), and Religion 351 (World Religions in Light of the Restored Gospel).

By the end of the semester, I'll be 15 credits closer to graduating, and as my mother likes to point out, holding up a sign on a street corner that says, "Will Think for Food."

At least, that's what she says Uncle Alan told his son-in-law about majoring in Philosophy. I'll be okay, though, since I'm only minoring in it. My major is Latin American Studies, which is so much more viable. I like to tell people I'm studying to be a Mexican.

(Pancho Villa a.k.a. Pancho Villa, Friend of the Mormons. I bet you didn't know that!)

The more I think about it, the more I realize that the combination of Latin American Studies and Philosophy is going to make for a much more idiosyncratic sign. It will say something like "Will Think in Spanish for Food" or "Will Describe World Poverty and Hunger for Food."

That last one will mean so much more to me, for I, myself, will be starving. How existential.

Watch out, Ghandi.

Roll over, Henry David Thoreau.

Okay, I actually love my major and my minor, and that's why I chose them. Some other time I can blog about my big plans for after graduation. Right now, I just need to "work hard and get good grades," as my father reminds me every time I speak with him (literally). That will secure my graduation and future success. At least it better, 'cause that's what they've been feeding me since the seventh grade.

The first day of school, which was 2 September, Cody (my roommate) and I decided to take some back to school pictures. He's starting his junior core in the accounting program and had to wear a suit on the first day.

I decided to really contrast his style with my Ed Hardy skull tattoo shoes. I really turn heads when I wear them on campus. I thought it was a great way to portray the differences in our majors.

In my defense, I was carrying a copy of the New York Times under my arm. That's something we Latin American Studies majors like to do.

Here's one more interesting contrast between me and Cody.

11 September 2008

September 11, 2001

I'll still never forget it. Sometimes I just wish I'd remember it more often.

09 September 2008

They're Back

When the white tent goes up in Brigham Square, you know The Quill and the Sword is looking for fresh blood, I mean, new members.

And those initiates can hardly imagine what awaits them.

Their lives will be full of midnight runs across campus, wielding swords, maces, etc. They will start using terms like "hence" and "oft" more frequently in regular speech. And when they plan their weddings, only the best of the medieval reenactments will suffice.

All the while, the rest of us will look on and wonder why they were born in this century in this country and go to this school. They would have been much better of at Salamanca or Oxford or Hogwarts...

07 September 2008

Lucha Libre @ Provo City Hall

There are many ways to desecrate City Hall. Provo has chosen to do it through the semi-secret world of the Mexican Lucha Libre.

Before, when I thought of Lucha Libre, I thought of Jack Black, Jared Hess, and Nacho Libre.

After the luchas (fights) that went down at City Hall the other night, Nacho Libre will now take second place in my thought process when Mexican pro wrestling is mentioned.

The luchas went down as part of Provo's Festival Latinoamericano. It was gloriously trashy, and the moves were farther from believable than normal.

In the last picture, please notice the tattoo of Utah on the underdog's elbow. Way to represent!

Thank you, Provo, for this cultural treat. City Hall will never be the same.