Monday, February 25, 2008

A Statement on Career Choices

I went to my parents on Sunday to eat dinner and the conversation turned to the inevitable topic of what I wanted to do once I graduated. My parents were more than a little shocked when I said that I didn't know and that it didn't really matter what I did as long as I got paid pretty good money for it. My parents insisted that while it is good to get paid well, that I'll be happier if its a job I like to do. While this is true, this is a paradox. A job that I like to do. The thing with me is that I've never had a job I liked (although one came close because I worked alone and got to listen to my ipod and no one got on my ass if I was slacking-the reason this job was not a job I liked however, was because it was at Wal-Mart-no, not working for Wal-Mart...just working at Wal-Mart for Frito-Lay). I know what you're thinking. Obviously, none of these jobs are fun because they're jobs everyone hates but has to work when they're young because they can't get anything else. And you'd be right. However, the fact of the matter is that all of the things I like to do, I can't get paid for doing. So, I'm "selling out", which is what my friends and I call it, when a person goes to work at a job they know they'll hate but get paid a lot of money for it. I've come to the conclusion that it doesn't matter what I do. I just want a 9 to 5 job that pays well, where I don't have to take much of it home so I can do the things I do like to do which is spend time with my wife and my friends, play in my bands, watch movies, play video games, read books etc. Is that so bad? Maybe, I'll be more ambitious in the future, and try to find better careers that suit me. But right now, the only thing that matters is being at home, and whenever I'm away, I won't be happy no matter what job I have.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The Zelda Complex

I had a conversation the other day with a friend of mine about how I usually hate it when the vast population start liking things that I like. I know this is elitist and arrogant but I attribute it to being like a secret that isn't fun anymore when everyone is in on it. My biggest example to my friend was the video game series, "The Legend of Zelda". I have been playing the Legend of Zelda series since I was about four or five (which was funny when my friend tried to say, "What? Its not like you've been playing it since you were like four or which I replied, "Well, actually I have...). So, from this, I am definitely allowed to say that I have "been there from the beginning". I have since went onto play every Zelda game that has ever come out (which is not an easy task since there are 12 of far). But among non-extreme Zelda players, everyone agrees that the best Zelda game that has ever come out was The Legend of Zelda:Ocarina of Time for the Nintendo 64. Sadly, I am forced to agree with them on this issue. I have even heard from people that said, "Oh yeah, I never play video games but I played Ocarina of Time and its probably the best game I've ever played." Should I be glad that my favorite video game series has received the much lauded fame that it deserves or should I feel how I am inclined to feel, which is that some people just won't understand the games like I do? This doesn't stop with Zelda either. This extends to all of my favorite things, since most of the things I like in the entertainment industry, most people know about as well. My friend concluded that he knew what I was saying, but that it was pompous to feel that way. But, I suppose everyone has to have their "thing". We just go about doing that in different ways.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


Well, its almost that time...graduation...after five years, I will finally earn my bachelor's degree in Communication and Journalism with a focus in Advertising this coming May. I am starting to feel what I like to call Post-Graduate Depression (I don't know if this is a real ailment but it freakin' should be). I have no idea what I am going to be doing career-wise once I graduate. I jokingly asked my boss at work if I could have a raise once I got my degree (for those of you who don't know, my job involves throwing 25 pound bags of mail all day). He didn't say yes or no. He just said, "Dude, don't work here." He then suggested I go sell insurance or something. Riveting. I work for 5 years to be qualified to sell insurance (no offense to anyone who sells insurance...its just for me, this does not sound like a job I would want). I still want to go to grad school though. At least I do know that. I just don't know what I want to go to grad school for. I just know that I like to learn and that grad school will give me an edge over my competitors for jobs. Or maybe, I just don't want to choose a career and I'd rather delay the decision. I don't know. I just wish I had it figured out already. I turn 23 next month. I jokingly told my friends that every year I say the same thing at my birthday. When I turned 19, I said, "Whoa, I'm 19, I gotta get it together." At 20, I said, "Whoa, I'm 20, I gotta get it together." And so on. Next month will be no different. I can only hope that when I turn 24, I can say something else.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Entertainment Blues

I am an entertainment junkie. I live for the next great movie, cd, or video game. But the winter months are not only a winter for nature but a winter for the entertainment industry as well. There are no new movies, no new cds, and no new video games I want to see, hear, or play. I figure with the ongoing writers strike, this is soon to be how it will be all the time. This makes me sad. Really sad. You would think that because of this, I would explore other venues and find new ways to entertain myself. To some extent this is true. I've started to write poetry and short stories again. I am reading a lot more. I am writing a lot of music (although not any more than I have at other times). And though all this is good for me and I enjoy it, sadly, I still yearn for the entertainment industry to get rolling again. I'm trying to figure out why this is. I have concluded that it is one of two possibilities. 1) I am lazy and would rather be entertained than entertain myself or 2) I am really excited about what this year has to offer in entertainment. I think it is a combination of both but I lean more heavily towards the 2nd. These are the things I'm most looking forward to this year. (Warning: I am a nerd.)

In movies: The Dark Knight-The sequel to Batman Begins with what looks to be an amazing performance by the late Heath Ledger. Who would have thought that anyone could fill the shoes of Jack Nicholson when it came to playing the Joker? Heath Ledger's interpretation of the Joker is different from Nicholson's in that when the Joker is on screen, you won't laugh as you did with Nicholson. Ledger's Joker is serious and menacing and insane. Throw in the all-star cast from the last movie and you have my 10 bucks come July.

In music: Anonymous-The sad thing about this year is that none of the bands I really like have announced release dates for their new albums. However, many artists are due for the "two-year rule" which is my assumption that every band should come out with a new album every two years which seems to be the norm with most bands. The artists due for albums according to the two-year rule are: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Flaming Lips, Coldplay, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, My Morning Jacket, Sigur ros, Beck, The Strokes, Muse and Pearl Jam. Enough said.

In video games: The video game I am most looking forward to this year is Star Wars: The Force Unleashed. This video game follows the adventures of Darth Vader's secret apprentice and much of what you will do during the game is hunt down the remaining Jedi who did not get killed during Episode 3. How awesome is that? Pictures of the game show Vader's apprentice holding his lightsaber behind his back, as if he is so awesome, he doesn't have to hold it in front of him. It comes out in April and I can't wait.

So basically, when a person knows what is coming to them in the near future, it makes it all the harder to endure these long winter months. I guess I'll just have to keep hoping for an early spring.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

5 Things I Love and Hate


1. I hate homework. You would think that doing homework for the past 18 years would make me used to it but it doesnt. Not to sound arrogant but most of the time, I already learned the lesson my teacher was trying to teach during class so doing the homework is a waste of time.

2. I hate disorder. This is not to be confused with being a clean freak. I am not a clean freak. But there always has to be a method to the madness. When my wife and I first got married, I told her I was frustrated and angry about all of the disorder in our bedroom. So, we went to Target and bought a bunch of hangers, two hampers, two power cord strips, and some storage bins. That was 3 months ago and I haven't complained since.

3. I hate flossing. I rarely do it. This is gross to some people even though I always brush my teeth morning and night for a full two minutes each time (which is more than the standard 30 sec. of most people-and they say I'm gross?). Part of the reason is that I have a small mouth and it is hard for me to floss. The other reason is that it hurts and I'm lazy.

4. I hate sleep. Oh yeah, its great when you're in the process of sleeping but sleep is a waste of time. I really wish I didn't have to sleep but everyone else still did. It would almost be as if I was living two lifetimes with all the extra time I'd have.

5. I hate how negative and pessimistic my friends can be sometimes. There was one point in my life when I thought I was starting to go into depression when I realized that I just felt so negative about everything I had to do and everyone around me, and all I had to do was just try harder to be optimistic. It worked but its still a challenge sometimes, with my friends being the way they are. I'd tell them but they would never believe that that is one of the main reasons they are unhappy.


1. I love playing music. It's fun playing in my bands but lately its been more fun just playing by myself. This is because sometimes you are obligated to play or write songs you don't particularly like because the rest of your band likes them. But when you are by yourself, you can play whatever you want. And when you write by yourself, it is so much easier than writing with someone else.

2. I love my wife, my family and my friends. My family is wonderful and I always look forward to our gatherings and I get sad during those months when it is no one's birthday and we don't have any. I love my friends because only in the past year or two, after being friend's with each other for years, can we finally be honest with each other. I damaged some friendships in the past when I was trying to be a good role model and telling my friends what I thought were stupid mistakes. This drove some of my friends away, and only now, are we starting to rebuild the connection. And my wife. No one except my parents and my siblings thought it was a good idea for me to get married. And even though its only been about 4 months, I still love the fact that I get to see her every night when I come home and I get to talk to her and be with her. She is still the funniest person I have ever met and one of the most caring and I look forward to all the laughs and good times in the future.

3. I love a cold Henry Weinhard's Root Beer. Being Mormon when most of my friends were partying led my other Mormon friends and my wife and I to discover this root beer. When there is nothing for us to do on a Friday and Saturday night, we like to go to the grocery store (I know, it sounds like a blast, right?) and buy treats and drinks. This root beer sells in a 6 pack of glass bottles. To quickly get them cold, put them in the freezer for about 45 min. Delicious and relaxing everytime.

4. I love video games. I feel bad for the older generation who doesn't understand them. Playing video games is almost the same experience as watching a movie except YOU are the main character. There have been many times in my life when I did not have any friends and so I would stay inside and play video games. I know this is not much of an alternative to real friends, but they made me feel better, that I could accomplish something, that I was the hero. Not to mention, I think they made me smarter when I was kid, as there is a lot of problem solving and a lot of reading as well. Besides, anyone who plays a Zelda game will be hooked on video games for life.

5. I love who I am. I feel bad for people who don't feel this way. I would hate to be anyone else than me.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

The Downside of Bi-Partisanship

Faced with the coming election, I finally decided to get off my butt and start figuring out who I was going to vote for. I have always felt strongly about politics because I recognized at an early age how important they were. I was always more willing to speak about it in school, and I always knew what I was talking about unlike the rest of my peers (In hindsight, this was not true. My other smarter peers knew more than me, but they were in honors classes and I was not, though I probably should have been). So I decided that I would go to all of the candidates websites (yes, all!) to see what they stood for. At this point in the race, this was not as much work as it seems as only three candidates, Romney, McCain, and Obama are still in the race (I realize that Hillary is also still in the race, but being a Republican, it was a big enough deal just for me to go to Obama's site. I did not want to strain myself). Whenever I study politics, I get somewhat sad. Not because of the issues themselves, but because of what bi-partisanship is doing to this country. A constant war of words is always going on and it will continue to go on and most likely get worse. Why do we even need to label ourselves as a Republican or Democrat when most people don't agree with every issue that each party stands on? There are some people (and I've met both Republicans and Democrats that feel this way) that think that the other side are evil, corrupt, and are conspiring to get what they want. I realize that there are people like this, but you cannot say all Democrats or all Republicans are like this. You know that saying, "You cannot talk about religion or politics in school?" How sad is that? That the issues and problems we face as a country, we don't even want to discuss with each other?
I took a class in college where we studied how the Supreme Court works. One day, we watched a video with interviews with some Supreme Court members. One of the interviewees was Sandra Day O'Connor who was a Republican who was put in the Supreme Court by (I think) Reagan. What she said was enlightening. The Supreme Court deal with the most difficult cases in America. The justices are constantly discussing with each other the viewpoints they have with each case. No one gets angry. No one ever thinks that anyone else is simply trying to push the agenda of their political party. O'Connor went on to say that whatever political party a justice has when they come into the court, all of their preconceptions begin to vanish away, and they are not simply a Republican and they are not simply a Democrat. They are somewhat in the middle, able to see both sides of an argument before deciding a case. Perhaps if we, as a people, were able to talk to each other in this same way, we would not be only unified in politics but in many other ways as well.
P.S. I decided to vote for Romney. I was against him at first (I don't know why) but when I watched clips of him at debates, I found him to be a logical and caring person. Not to mention (I won't go into all the issues he stands for, although I'll discuss them with you if you want), he's the only Govenor still in the race and I believe Govenors are better at running a country than Senators. But then again, thats just my opinion.