28 January 2009

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Spinlates

Bored? Check out my guest blog on Fit Me Pink for some cheap entertainment. That's right, I'm a guest blogger on a women's fitness blog. I like to think that I am to Fit Me Pink as Dr. Oz is to Oprah. (Yeah, I dominated those on the SATs.)

My Fit Me Pink post is about my first experience in a Pilates class. Fascinating, right?

Now, in other news, last night as I was on my way to Spinlates (you'll find out what Spinlates is if you read my entire entry over at Fit Me Pink), I got pulled over.

I was in a hurry, and had broken at least 15 laws on my way to the gym. Fortunately for me, I broke all of those laws before the cop saw me. He decided to pull me over because he was bored. Oh, well I guess I don't know that for sure. He said he ran my plates and couldn't find any proof of insurance.

At hearing that, I hurriedly (I was gonna be late to Spinlates if he didn't hurry) explained to him that my car is a company lease car through my dad's work and that it's insured in California even though it's licensed and registered in Utah. I handed him all the paperwork he should've needed, but he still wasn't satisfied. He said that my insurance card didn't specifically state that the vehicle I was driving was insured.

(BS, I thought. You just want to issue me a citation, hoping that I don't appear in court so I have to pay whatever penalty or fee or whatever is associated with that. Maybe if I'm really delinquent, Dog the Bounty Hunter will come after me. My 15 minutes of fame is on it's way. Thanks, traffic cop.)

I know he's probably a simple man, and that he's probably never been north of Lehi or south of Spanish Fork, but come on! There's a world of insurance companies and policies out there. As a cop, he should know the ins and outs of all of them, so that I, the one who doesn't get paid for all the time I have to spend dealing with having done absolutely nothing wrong (in front of him), don't have to be inconvenienced. I'm the taxpayer. Geez! The car's a lease. I don't even own or insure the car I drive. Take it up with them, not me.

In the end, I got a citation and have to appear at the Provo Justice Court "not less than (5) five nor more than (14) fourteen days after issuance of this citation." Even worse, he made me late to Spinlates. To console myself for the inconvenience, I stopped at McDonald's to hit up the Dollar Menu. That's right, instead of burning upwards of 1000 calories, I ate my weight in McDonald's grease.

Ready for the twist? Yesterday at lunch I told Cody I was overdue for a ticket. In my mind, I was thinking of the 15 laws I broke before the cop saw me. Funny how fate put a twist on that one. Didn't see that one coming!

27 January 2009

I Want to be Bear Grylls

Have you read Bear's blog? If you haven't, you're missing out.


Every woman loves him and every man wants to be him.

Stop by sometime for some behind-the-scenes entertainment.

22 January 2009

Three Years and Running

As tradition dictates, the Martin Luther King, Junior holiday weekend is to be spent in California. The Saturday of the weekend must be spent at Disneyland, and the Sunday must be spent visiting beaches and temples. Admission to Disneyland must be free and it had better be the best weekend of the year.

The first year I went, there were 11 people.

Last year, the count dropped to nine.

This year, there were only three die-hards who could make the trek.

Planning was a little late this year, too. I realized sometime last week that the holiday was coming up and no one had planned the trip. After making some calls, it was apparent that nothing was going down unless I made it happen. With only a few days to plan, I secured a place to stay (thanks, Susie) and a friend to sign us in (for free) to the Happiest Place on Earth.

We left Provo at 2:00 PM on Friday. We got to Susie's around 11:00 PM that night. I was tired, but the 10 year-old that lives inside me wouldn't let me sleep past 7:00 AM the next day. I'm sure Dede and Anne were surprised/shocked/appalled when I jumped on their bed at 7:01 AM. Disneyland was waiting, and we didn't have any time to waste.

We were in the park by 9:30 AM, ready for a day of magic.

This picture probably best describes what it was like for Dede and Anne as I chauffeured them around this weekend.

I try every time I go, and still nothing!

The honey pots.

As the girls trained with Mulan...

I cut in with the crocodile from Fantasia.

After a great day at Disneyland, we watched the world's best firework show and were on our way.

The next day we went to my old ward for Sacrament meeting and then on to Santa Monica to taste the salty sea air and see some weirdos.

Apparently, I fit in with the weirdos better than I thought.

We also visited the LA Temple, but didn't get any pictures 'til we were driving away.

Our next stop was Newport Beach. We hopped on the freeway in Santa Monica and were in Newport in 20 minutes. I joked with Dede and Anne that everything in LA is 20 minutes away (traffic pending).

In Newport, we walked around the temple, visited some banana stands on Balboa Island, and went into Laguna Beach. We were hoping for an LC sighting, but she's obviously moved on to bigger and better things.

Another year, another great trip. If you want in next year, just let me know, because I will be going again. After three years, it really is a tradition.

See you then!

11 January 2009

Christmas Break with the Snowbirds

I spent the first half of my Christmas break here in Utah with the entire family (minus a few cousins). For a partial report on that, check my sister Robyn's blog. It was good to see everybody and be with family.

Unfortunately, before the dust could settle, Christmas was over, my mom and dad were back in Nashville and my sister Kimberly was in Cedar City. With the family gone, I went the way of the Snowbirds down to Arizona.

My roommate Cody lives in Scottsdale and invited me down for the week after Christmas. Always up for an adventure, I couldn't say no.

You've met Cody before. Just in case you've forgotten who he is, here's a picture.

Cody and I spent the week doing all things Scottsdale. From mountain biking and hiking, to cruising Scottsdale's malls, sneaking onto the local golf course after hours, going to a Sun's game, and ringing in 2009 on the Pima Reservation, we did it all. We logged a lot of hours in Cody's car, visited with friends, and enjoyed our last week of vacation before the new semester started up.

It was a great week.

Of special interest in Arizona was the local vegetation. In a weeks time, my Arizonan friends made a special effort to teach me everything there is to know about it. From the "dangerous" nature of the jumping cholla to the local laws regarding the treatment of the saguaro cactus, I am now an expert. Ask me what the Five C's of Arizona are, and I'll say "cattle, citrus, climate, copper, and cotton."

All it took was a week, and I was ready to settle down and stay. The locals told me I'd think twice if I knew what July was like.

To make the trip complete, Cody and I decided to come back to Provo via Las Vegas. Originally, we were going to stay with our friend Natalie in Henderson. When she left for Provo early, Cody and I were left with no other option than to stay at the Riviera Hotel on the Strip. It was no Bellagio or or Venetian, but the price was right.

On the way to Vegas we stopped for lunch in the Route 66 town of Kingman.

We had to choose between Mr. D'z Route 66 Diner and fast food. After eating there, I would recommend it to anyone. Everything was what you would expect, right down to the bickering waitresses.

After Kingman, our path took us by the Hoover Dam. I was a dam first timer , so we stopped to get the full dam experience. We took a dam walk and some dam pictures. Dam, it was big. We had a dam good time.

After the dam, Vegas was just a few minutes up the road. With only one night to take advantage of the "What happens in Vegas, Stays in Vegas" mantra, we had to do as much as possible with the time we had. For two Mormon boys, this entailed walking from one end of the Strip to the other and back. We made sure to take in all the sights (while trying to not look at the ground).

We watched the Volcano Show at the Mirage.

Gawked at the lights and crowds.

Payed homage to the Bellagio Fountains.

And dropped our jaws in at least 17 different (but identical) malls.

By the end of the night, we had walked at least 12 miles and seen everything free that Vegas had to offer (with the exception of the video black jack machines, which are not free, despite how lucky you feel).

After our "wild" night in Vegas, we were a little more ready to head back to Utah, school, and the snow. Besides a stop at my sister's house in Cedar City, the rest of the trip is history.

01 January 2009

Happy 2009!

When most people dream of the perfect New Year's Eve, they imagine themselves in places like Time Square, Las Vegas, or London. I have to admit, I've dreamed of those places before.

After last night, however, I know there is no better place to ring in the New Year than on the Salt River Pima Reservation just outside of Scottsdale, Arizona.

We hadn't planned on spending the evening here, but when we saw the Ferris Wheel from the freeway, we couldn't resist.

I've been spending the week at Cody's house. We met up with our friend Tammy for the day. When we got to the gates at the "rez," we were glad we had her. As I like to tell her, she's a card-toting member of the Navajo Nation. Amongst the Pima people, she made us feel a little less out-of-place.

To me, the carnival we stumbled upon seemed like a scene out of What's Eating Gilbert Grape.

That's why I felt the need to ride the "fun slide." In my mind, the carnival allowed me to live Johnny Depp and Leo DiCaprio's roles.

Speaking of Leo, I also felt the need to climb the "rez's" water tower, but refrained for fear that they wouldn't allow me to come back next year.

After the Ferris Wheel and the "fun slide," I had had my fill. Cody, however, refused to leave without going on one more ride.

At carnivals, I do not do well with most rides that spin, rotate, or gyrate. The ride Cody was interested in did at least two of the three. As I prepared myself to board, I could already feel the nausea coming on.

After the ride, I was alive, but had lost my voice and couldn't tell what bodily orifice was gonna give, but knew that one of them probably would. I managed to keep it all inside, and eventually even got over it.

Cody was much better off than me. You could even say he was giddy. This picture was taken just seconds after we dismounted.

Like any good Native American Reservation, there was a Casino next door. After enjoying what the carnival had to offer, we moved over there to try our odds with Lady Luck.

Cody went from giddy to beyond depressed when he lost $4 at video poker.

He went back to giddy when he made $7 dollars back in a slot machine. He thanked the Pima people for giving him $3 to celebrate the New Year with them. I told him he should thank me, since three of those dollars came from the five I lost playing games I don't even understand.

We watched the ball drop in the middle of a smoke-filled playing floor, and were possibly the only people who were able to pull away from gambling for at least 30 seconds to bring in 2009.

All in all, it was a great New Year's Eve.