Wednesday, June 30, 2010

He went to save the world

On my way to University, I thought I would be able to solve the world’s problems.
I thought to myself: yes, yes I can do that. I cannot wait. I just know I can.

I got to my room and started my studies soon after my arrival.
Philosophy and psychology, physics and astronomy, those were the subject I came to learn.

Sir Stephen Hawking has always been an inspiration.
Mr. Albert Einstein and Mr. Richard Feynman were both inspirations, too.
Mr. Sigmund Freud, I didn’t have much taste for, but Mr. Pavlov certainly inspired.
And especially Dr. Michio Kaku, I hoped to shake his hand one day.

One night, late after my studies, I settled in to solve the problems.
Paper on my desk, ready as can be.
Pencil sharpened, also as ready as can be.

I sat and I pondered, I sat and I waited, I sat and I struggled…
Just to put only a few words on the page.

What was I to solve? What problem should I tackle?
How can I help the world first and foremost?

Unfortunately, nothing came to mind; no ideas, no thoughts, no inklings of anything.
But I know I can do this, I just know that I can.
Why aren’t I yet solving the greater issues of man?
After three hours I closed my eyes: I’ll return to this later, when I am more wise.

As the days went on and classes grew long, Fall turned to Winter, and Spring soon called.
I continued in my chair – my desk was worn, my elbows sore, but my pencil’s still sharp, and ready as a spear.

“I got it!” I exclaimed. I knew right where to start.
“I’ll show them” I told myself, as my mind began to spark.
I was embarking on a journey that would save us all,
and onto the paper I quickly wrote:

“We must love one another and give respect to all.”


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Under The Blue Moon

We sat on the beach
We hadn’t done that together
You and I, all alone
No moon in the sky

We sat and talked for hours
As if we had been there many times before
Although it was our first time,
we knew it wasn’t our last

We talked for what seemed like forever,
just you and me and the stars
Talking about the future,
and reminiscing about the past

When we first sat down,
the sun retreated behind us
Then as we lay staring up to the sky,
it was midnight and the moon began to rise

Our feelings grew into the night,
as the blue moon shone in the sky
Our hearts, our eyes, our bodies and our minds,
they, too, began to shine

And as the blue moon sat in the sky,
and its blue light danced across the water,
we laid on the blanket intertwined,
and realized we’re meant for one another

*Note: Inspired by Theme Thursday, topic: Blue


Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Basics of Conversation

It's simple really, either:

A) listen, respond, offer something to the conversation, repeat
B) offer something to the conversation, listen, respond, repeat.

I've come across many one-sided conversations lately, and I've typically been on the side with all the action - seeming to always drive the conversation, even from the very early stage of communication. I don't mind initiating, but I do mind forcing it along.

I make it a point to ask questions, build interest, and respond accordingly, typically in all of my conversations. However, many of the conversations lately seem to have a flat response to my side of the conversation, with no sense of continuance; no questions, no comments, nothing really added - just a response with barely anything to build upon. This results in a one-sided conversation. A conversation that really isn't a conversation at all. Communication, yes. Conversation, no.

However, it seems that more times than not, the responses are pretty good: thoughtful, and with interest of a conversation., but lacking any back-and-forth material... material which is imperative to good conversation. I'm not sure if people are unaware that they’re doing this, but it can be a little off-putting. You have to wonder if the conversation should even continue on, either now or in the future…

I guess the moral of the story here is to either A) converse appropriately, or B) make it well-known that you have no interest in a conversation.

Thank you.


Monday, June 21, 2010



I don’t get it. The English language often times makes no sense. Sure, I speak and write it well, and can convey a good story through its means, but really… wth is going on with the “oes” and “os”? Tornado becomes tornadoes, potato becomes potatoes, but photo doesn’t become photoes, and tostado well… that’s just another language, but it too doesn’t become tostadoes… nor does taco become tacoes.

Also, what’s up with having words that are bad? Who’s stupid idea was it to deem certain words “bad”? I mean really… why is one word “bad”, making another obviously “good”? That makes no sense, and is illogical. Whomever thought it a good idea to label certain words as “bad” clearly had issues in life. I personally don’t see a use in having “bad” words – why can’t the current list of “bad” words just simply be strong markers in a sentence; strong adverbs or adjectives, strong conveyances of expression? Making a word “bad” is just ignorant if you ask me. It’s like saying a certain type of tree is “bad”, or a certain breed of animal is “bad”. Come on, people, get real.

A word is a word. A word is a sound that comes out of your mouth which has a specified definition standing behind it so we know what we’re talking about. Throwing in the “bad” words shouldn’t be a problem, if anything they add passion and description to an otherwise boring sentence. Yes, the “bad” words tend to be strong in their conveyance of feeling, emotion, or opinion, but sometimes you just need to go to that level to fully express what you’re trying to say. These words shouldn’t be “bad”, they should just be words.


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

A process for direction

I’m trying to figure out what to do with my life moving forward from here. Have you ever tried to do that? It’s a daunting task! I suppose some people are born and bred into something that they enjoy and just know what they’re made for. Unfortunately that’s not me.

So, in order to tackle this, I’ve decided to approach it this way: I’m taking stock of me; who I am, etc… I’ve made a list of three categories: languages, passions, interests. Through these, I expect to find my calling, or at least more direction in my career path. At the very least, I expect this exercise to help identify areas where I’m proficient and areas I’ll enjoy, and hopefully indentify the areas that combine the two. To clarify “languages”: these are the subjects/topics/industries that I can speak fluently, or speak well… I couldn’t think of a different category title.

Here’s what I have so far, listed in no specific order:

Languages (what subjects/topics/industries can I speak fluently, or speak well?)
- Politics
- Finance
- IT
- General business

Passions (what am I passionate about when speaking with others?)
- Education
- Music
- Food

Interests (what are my interests?)
- Outdoor activities
- Recycling/”Green” things
- Music
- Poker
- Cooking
- Motivation/Inspiration/Self-help (maybe?)

I plan to continue building the list, but I’m at a point where I really have to think about it, I mean really, really think to find things to add. Perhaps only those which immediately come to mind should be included here, simply because if they’re at the forefront of the mind then they must be a legitimate, viable interest. Otherwise, if I really have to think to come up with something, maybe it’s not that high up on the list to begin with and shouldn’t be included. I guess then maybe my list is done… or maybe it’s not. I guess I’ll find that out.


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A (sometimes) daily reminder of my current profession

Sometimes I have to remind myself that I work in IT and that my coworkers are IT folk. Developers, code writers, server guys, database guys, technical people, and all other IT people typically are not the outgoing type (generally speaking). I don’t think this is news to anyone, but techies, while they get along fine within their crowd, often times find it difficult to communicate outside of said crowd.

I, unfortunately, am not a techie. If I were, perhaps I would be a little more understanding. But I’m not a techie, I’m a soft-skill business guy. I’m not saying that I’m not understanding; I feel my business-like skills enable me to understand, respect, and properly deal with said techies in a positive fashion. And while I think and talk business-like, I can certainly integrate, communicate with, and discuss in certain depth technical topics with the techies… but I’m still not a techie.

There are exceptions to this rule of course: there are techies who have the soft skill of good communication and workplace relations. They can hold a conversation, acknowledge your existence, and speak something other than technical jargon. But those individuals are not the lot of the bunch in IT.

The issue at hand, specifically, is the passerby interaction when two people are walking down the hall. Now, I can understand the I’m-busy-looking-at-my-BlackBerry-and-can’t-notice-you instances; I’m as guilty as the next guy. What I can’t understand is the I’m-looking-past-you-and-not-acknowledging-your-existence-and-refuse-to-make-eye-contact, all while I am making contact with them – effectively watching them as they choose to ignore me.

No, I don’t want to hold a conversation, and no I probably don’t even want to talk with you at any length. What I would like is a simple hello, a smile, or some other form of acknowledgement. I am not invisible, and no matter how far past me you look, you are not invisible either. I can still see you.


Weather and the such

Weather. Why is it the subject of discussion between two individuals, usually in passing? Sure, you have the chat-about-the-weather conversations, probably every day to some extent. But why is weather the topic of choice for those short, “hey, how are you, how was your weekend” conversations? Why is there a need to throw in the weather to that conversation? Why weather? Isn’t there another common topic that we could talk about? Surely there’s something else besides weather that we have in common… Quite possibly something of substance even.

Wait… is that it? Is it the substance thing? Are people less inclined to briefly discuss a topic of substance with someone in passing, and instead resort to the most basic of conversation tactics – the weather? Or are some people simply less inclined to hold discussion with people they’re not completely familiar with? Maybe it’s a comfort thing? A boundary thing? Hmm… I suppose it could be any one of those depending on the people involved.

In other news, it turns out that my blog is the #5 Google search result for “motion sensitive faucet for cats”… And yes, someone actually searched for that, and yes, that one person actually clicked on the link to my post about motion-sensing faucets. And yes… I blogged about motion-sensing faucets…

In additional other news, I woke up this morning to an email notification of a comment to one of my posts. Well actually, there were three email notifications of a comment on three posts, along with my first blog “award”! I’ve been blogging consistently for two months now and someone has already found my words to be “good” or “enjoyable” to some degree. Thanks, Jingle, I appreciate it!

And for now, that is all.

Good day.


Sunday, June 13, 2010

A letter to Lappy on true feelings - Weekend Edition


Dear Lappy,

True feelings are sometimes hard to explain. Sometimes they're simply hard to put into words. But, you know they're there, and you feel them... they're feelings after all. Sometimes I get feelings that I can't put to paper, or vocalize for others to hear. I might be able to say them and they would make sense, but maybe out of fear of being judged I don't.

I have a wall up. It's becoming more clear by the day. I never noticed it there, but now that I'm spending more time alone where life is quiet, I'm starting to see that wall. I'm not sure how high it is though, so I can't say if it'll be easy to bring down or if it'll take a long time - something of a real effort. I guess my foremost concern is: what is this wall preventing? What is it blocking? What is it getting in the way of? And to those questions, I do not know the answer.

There's something to be said of loneliness, not the sad or depressing kind, but the kind where you're simply alone. Just you and yourself hanging out. Some say you learn a lot about who you are when you're alone. I might agree.

You've found me in an interesting time of my life. I'm not even sure. I find myself questioning things I do, questioning things I say, and questioning the relationships I have (or don't have). Even though I have all these questions, and feelings, and thoughts, I don't have many answers. Because of that, it's sometimes frustrating on a certain level.

Sometimes it feels good to just write things down. Getting them out of your mind and onto paper (or screen) for your eyes to see, for your mind to grasp from reality.

So here's to true feelings: I sometimes feel lost. I sometimes feel confused. I sometimes feel lonely. I sometimes wish things were different. And I sometimes wonder how things would be had I not said or done some things in my life. I should also add that I feel happy at times as well - I don't need you to think I'm depressed or anything.

Alas, here I am, circa 11pm on a Sunday night, writing a draft post that may or may not make it to the blog... alone... by myself, just me and my dog. But she's asleep, so while her company is nice, she's still asleep... and she can't talk (at least I don't think she can. If she could, I hope she would tell me).

I'm not sure if something is broken, I'm not sure if something needs to be fixed, I'm not sure if there's anything wrong at all. This may very well be normal. However, judging by my life's track record, few things turn out to be normal.

Ho hum, and good night. Thanks for listening, Lappy.


Friday, June 11, 2010

The oil mess...

Sorry, I couldn’t get away from it, and I feel like I would be doing a disservice to the issue had I not mentioned it at least once in this blog. It is a shame to see what has, is, and will continue to happen in the Gulf of Mexico surrounding the oil spill. It’s a shame it happened, it’s a shame it’s the largest ever, and it’s a shame it’s going to do so much damage ecologically and economically.

It’s a shame, but I guess that’s a risk of the world’s dependency on oil. Unfortunately, there’s little ways to get away from this dependency. I’m sure no one would have a problem if we simply stopped using oil so long as a viable alternative for the masses was available at the drop of a hat… and yes, that literally – a drop of a hat.

While we have high, although expected and reasonable, hopes of transitioning from oil to a more sustainable and environmentally friendly fuel source, there is no way to turn a switch and change overnight. It is going to take a long, long time to transition from oil and onto something else that is viable for the masses. It’s not simple, and I think everyone knows that.

What should have been done was continue the research that started in the 70’s during the oil crisis. Unfortunately, that spike in interest of changing to alternative fuels was primarily caused by the oil shortage and rising fuel prices. Once the oil supplies returned to normal levels and prices dropped, declining interest in finding alternative fuel sources, along with lobbying from industry, resulted in the topic subsiding. Yes, research continued, but the US government made the mistake of giving in to big oil and big business, opting to not continue the issue in any strong, serious fashion. Had the US government pushed for a true revolution away from oil, we wouldn’t be in the same position we are today.

Fast-forward 30 years or so and here we are, with new interest in alternative fuel sources, but for mostly different reasons. Sure, the price of oil and gasoline has increased to points where we really want to move away from oil because it hurts our wallets, but on top of that is continued instability in the Middle East, concerns about the oil reserve levels worldwide, global warming (aka climate change), and now, sadly, what is turning out to be the worst oil spill in history.

I would like to think that this last circumstance is the proverbial cherry-on-top of the grand-issue, and atop the interest that has been building for years and years… not so much a delicious I-want-to-eat-you cherry, but a this-is-too-much-and-I-can’t-eat-anymore cherry, and hopefully also the “last straw on the camel’s back” (that poor, poor camel is always getting its back broken).

There is no doubt that Mother Earth will make everything right – it’s just a matter of when and for how long we will have to deal with the consequence of our actions and dependencies.

*Subtle note: I am in no way an environmentalist, activist, an anti-oiler, or an anti-anything that has to do with big business. What frustrates me the most in this situation is the lack of foresight on the part of business and on the part of the US government. I feel that even I, little ol’ MBA no-oil-experience me, have a more firm grasp on the processes and procedures that should have taken place before drilling commenced and after the accident occurred, than those within the walls of BP and our government.

Why has there been little to no containment of the spill? Why was there no tested-and-proven method to quickly cap the leaking well? How is it that our government, for many administrations, has allowed drilling in such depths without failsafe operations in place? Or at the very least, how could the government have granted drilling permits without proof of a tested and known method to cap a leaking well soon after an accident like this occurred?


Traveling & Cruising

What seems to be every day, I get email from the usual sites informing me of new travel deals. Hotwire, Priceline, and Carnival are the usual suspects, although there may be another or two. Every day I open their email in hope of finding an awesome deal. Every day I open their email to find that the awesome deal isn’t there. Sure, there’s a good deal or two if you’re flying from the “Northwest” but rarely from anywhere else. Almost never is Denver on the list of good origination flights.

I’m always interested in the cruise deals though. I went on a cruise once, several years ago. It was a Carnival cruise to the Caribbean, 7 days, stopped in Cozumel (Mexico), Montego Bay (Jamaica), and Grand Cayman (Cayman Islands). At around the hour-after-getting-on-the-boat mark, I already was looking forward to my next cruse. In fact, I was ready to book it right then and there.

Fast-forward 4+ years to today and I still haven’t been on my second cruise. I’m still waiting, patiently, for the right time and circumstances. (Typing that sentence out made me realize, and think back to another post of mine about living life your way and to its fullest on your own terms… or something like that. Now, with that in mind, I’m sitting here wondering why I haven’t taken another cruise. I better get planning!)

Anyway… We flew from Denver to Houston on New Year’s Eve, stayed overnight (which produced a very interesting story while in the hotel room for the evening), took the Carnival shuttle bus to Galveston the next morning, arrived dockside in dense fog (delaying the arrival of the ship, thus the disembarking of prior passengers, their luggage, and cleaning of the ship), had lunch at a seafood place next to the dock, and waited in line to get on the ship (which was unusual, so we were told, caused by the fog).

Here’s a short list of the highlights from the cruise:
-All-you-can-drink (although drinks weren’t free on the ship, it cost less than $200 for 2 people to drink from the first hour to the last on the ship, even after 7 days)
-24-hour food
-Animals shaped from towels, left by the maid service from their daily cleaning
-Excursions (we did the Mayan ruin tour in Mexico, boating/snorkeling in Jamaica, and beach day in Grand Cayman)

(Photo courtesy of

I can’t portray the level of enjoyment I had while on that ship. I can only suggest to everyone I meet that they take a cruise at least once in their life. As for me, I had hoped to make it an annual trip… clearly that hasn’t panned out. I’d better get to it!


Thursday, June 10, 2010

Parties & Clowns - Late Night Edition

Every party needs a clown. That's what I just found out, or at least I was told... by the TV.

But then I stopped to think about it, and it seems true: every time there's a party, there's always one guy (or girl) who plays the clown. Whether it be the joke-teller, the prankster, the comical one, or the drunk; there always seems to be a clown, even if they play the clown for only a few minutes during the party.

I remember when I was in high school, my girlfriend's parents were prominent psychologist and held an annual Christmas party at their house (even though one was Jewish and the other an atheist, but that's another subject and story for another post). I'm sure you can imagine the crowd who attended such an event - there were a lot of sweaters, ties, jackets, and typically not a place for a high school kid. But there I was, with my girlfriend, hanging out with the 30-, 40-, and 50-somethings in the "I hang out with psychologists", "I am a psychologist" or "I'm a lawyer" crowd. We didn't stay very long; made an appearance, retreated from the action, and made another appearance, and retreated again.

I digress, back to the point. Even at an event such as the one described above, there is always a clown. There’s always someone telling a joke, a funny story, or trying to entertain with modern comic relief. In fact, I would venture to guess that in a crowd such as the one listed above, there would be more effort in trying to tell jokes and entertain through comic relief… but that may not be a fair statement, and slightly stereotyping. I’m sure psychologists, lawyers, and their friends are just like every other normal group of people… well, maybe not “just like” every other normal group of people, but similar in that there’s always a clown in the crowd… even the seriousness-laden one.


Monday, June 7, 2010

She was told, do not eat the fruit for it is forbidden

She was told, do not eat the fruit for it is forbidden.
She rarely listened when her parents, peers, and elders told her the ways of the world.
She paid little mind to what they had to say, for she was surely smart enough to figure things out on her own.
She lived her life day to day, one moment at a time.
She frolicked and played, and came and gone as she pleased.

Even though she was old enough, she refused to work; that was for the under-class.
Her name and status meant she could do whatever she wants… so she thought.
Then came the day she went into the garden and picked the fruit.
It came as no surprise that she would eat it, even though she had been warned.
For it was forbidden, and all the townspeople knew it to be so.

She ran into the town square, thumbing her nose for all to see.
She planned on showing everyone how much more she knew.
She planned on eating the fruit to prove them all wrong.
She was going to prove she is smarter, and much better than them all.

The crowd drew around as she yelled and laughed.
She mocked them all, she was upper-class.
She stood upon the fountain’s edge and bit into the flesh with certainty.

She stood in horror as her legs turned to stone, becoming a statue atop her new upper-class throne.

She was told, do not eat the fruit for it is forbidden; she was told she would turn to stone.

*Note: Inspired by Magpie Tales, picture:


Moving Forward... With My Education

Today is the last day that I have to register for classes. Come December, I will have completed my current education endeavor. While I look forward to the possibility of not having class ever again, and never having to write a paper again, and never having to worry about school, I still have another year’s worth of education benefits after I finish my MBA in December.

While I’m excited to finish up and be done with it, I also don’t want to waste (not use) one full year of school funding that just so happens to be free (thank you, GI Bill). Given what I just said, it should come as no surprise that I have little interest in going on to further my education. And given the statement two sentences ago, I most likely will continue on with school.

But now, what do I go for? There has been suggestions, talk, and thoughts on a Master’s, another MBA emphasis, a Doctorate program or a PhD. I believe I have ruled out a Master’s as well as an additional MBA emphasis, leaving the Doctorate or PhD.

Can I take a moment to express something? I can’t believe I’m talking about this. Not once when I was younger did I consider myself Doctorate of PhD potential – it wasn’t of interest and it certainly wasn’t in the plans. And honestly, I’m a little shocked at myself when I think about this step. I’m the first in my family to go to college, let alone become a “doctor” of anything. I guess I’m a little proud of myself, and I’m sure my parents are too. My father has been pushing the education subject for a long time; before I started my BSBA in the Air Force, after I finished and moved to Colorado, before I started my MBA, and now, to some degree, that I’m finishing up my MBA. Thanks, Dad.

So, what are the possible studies of interest at such a level? My counselor at school who is also my Strategic Management instructor suggested a Doctorate of Management. I have also thought possibly a PhD in Public Affairs/Policy/Administration, or maybe something in the finance arena. Quite honestly, the doors are wide open, which is good, but also at that level of education you pretty much become pigeonholed and specialized in a short range of topics. I guess if you’re ok with what you want to be when you grow up that it will work out just fine.

Ah, but I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up. And that, my friends, is the hesitance in making a decision, and somewhat shows the level of seriousness I have to take this next step. Deciding to get my MBA was a cinch: business-type studies, a continuation of my undergrad. Post-grad? Not so easy, especially when I don’t know what I want to do when I grow up.

Of note, and especially of interest to me, is that this level of education catapults individuals into the consulting sector of industry – something I have had interest in after I finished my BS. Also of note is the opportunity to join Academia and live the life of a professor, consulting on the side, having summers off, and of course taking sabbaticals to far-off lands (or the backyard).

Decisions, decisions, decisions…


Wednesday, June 2, 2010


She looked East and saw the bright white light streak across the sky. Everyone else on the shoreline was fixated by the sight as she turned to run.

As she ran, the deafening silence broke – the crowd she left behind began to scream as it came crashing down on the horizon.

She stopped to look, turning around, watching in awe as it hit the ocean. The light brightened and the sky turned white. After a few moments, the explosion was not only heard, but it was felt by everyone around; it was the loudest sound that anyone had ever heard.

The plume rose from the water as the explosive sound subsided, rising into the sky and partially blocking the sun. The water drew back and the crowd stared blankly as the sky filled.

She turned, continuing to run until she could not run anymore.

By then the water had receded far, much farther than anyone could see.

And then they saw it.

They watched as the horizon rose from the Earth… a wave was approaching and everyone froze.

As it grew taller and closer, panic set in: the onlookers began to scream, they ran, they fell to the ground, and they cried. Some prayed, while others stood still.

Even though she was already miles inland, she knew there was no chance of outrunning the wave as she saw the wall of dark blue water rise in the distance, still minutes away. She saw how high it was: much higher than the trees in the distance it had yet to consume.

There was no warning except for the explosive sound as it came crashing to Earth. The streets were barren though… She stopped running, stood in place and made peace.

She waited as the water crashed over the trees and the houses in front of her.

She stood patiently awaiting her fate. She closed her eyes and held her breath as the white water crashed in front of her.

Her body tossed like a rag doll. Her vision full of white.

The moment she sensed the white light approaching, she shook herself awake. Carefully opening her eyes, the bright white light of the sun shining through her window and onto her face, she thanked God it had only been a dream.

*Note: Inspired by Theme Thursday, topic: White


Tuesday, June 1, 2010

On Living Life

I happened upon my uncle’s Facebook page yesterday, and this is what I found:

Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, beer in one hand, a beautiful woman in the other.... body thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and screaming "WOO HOO, what a ride!”

I did a quick search of the internet and found that the best source of this statement is “anon.”

What didn’t surprise me was that my uncle had something like this on his Facebook page, I also was already aware that he had a Facebook page, so I wasn’t too surprised there either.

What did surprise me was that rarely do people live up so such mantras. I think this is a good mantra, and while it may put you in precarious situations throughout life, either morally, ethically, or both, chances are you’ll have surely worn your welcome by the time you die.

And why not wear out your welcome? Why stand in line like a good little sheep, mouth shut, and herded from one life-phase to the next?

Why not buck the system, live life to its fullest, and live your life the way you, and only you, want to live it?

Why should it matter what others think? After all, your life isn’t theirs – they have their own life to waste (or live it up!). I mean really, you’re still dead in the end – so why not have that unbridled happiness and overindulged fun that you’ve always wanted?

Now, a lot of people would say that “life” and “family” and “friends” will all get in the way of living life the way they want to, or have caused them to be more cautious, more restrained, more “mature” and “respectable.”

I say bring them along for the ride! As you’re living and loving life to its fullest – so are they! (And probably better off for it.) And chances are, the dull and boring dailies won’t be the “norm” anymore, and people will start to live… really live.