Search This Blog

Provided by SEO company.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

One Day, I'll be as epic as my Grandma

She's a great-great-grandma, and still kickin'. Seriously!
Jack (my uncle)
Tammy (my cousin)
Eddie ( my cousin once removed)
Jade (my cousin twice removed)

My grandma is awesome.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

This weekend was LEGIT!

So Sunday, right when I got home Joey, one of the other YSA reps in the stake, called me and told me one of the YSA girls up in Palm Coast was getting kicked out of her house. A few phone calls were made and she got hooked up with a room with the Livingstons, our YSA advisers. Well as she was getting settled in Danny called me and asked if I wanted to stay over with him and Joey in New Smyrna. I wasn't working yesterday so I said sure. Well Danny picked me up around 7, and Joey and Amber (the girl from PC) met Danny and I at one of Joey's friends' house to watch the NBA finals. After that, we watch a DVD of a stand-up guy Kevin Hart. This guy is one of the funniest comedians today. All weekend long the five of us kept quoting him and having inside jokes about it all. (This was kinda nice too, because recently the group has splintered off into two cliques, and the others have been laughing about inside jokes for weeks leaving us kinda frustrated. It was nice to turn the tables by walking in to a room, looking at Joey and saying "Shut it DOWN!" and the five of us busting into hysterics.) Well after that, Danny, Joey and I stopped by 7-11 (because we were waiting for midnight so we could finally eat) and loaded up on junk food. Once we got to Joeys house he went right to sleep; Danny and I stayed up talking and playing chess. Now, keep in mind also there was a tropical storm going on all day Sunday and Monday.
Monday we wet back to Dylan's house (Joey's friend) and then headed back over to Daytona for a Ward BBQ party on the beach. Danny and I stopped by the Livingston's house to pick up Amber, and then we got lost trying to find the park. We eventually found it, and had a blast. (Danny and I also had fun trying to drive in a tropical storm with bad windshield wipers. After the BBQ, John (another YSA from New Smyrna), Dylan, Amber, Danny, Joey, Bella (Dyan's friend) and I all went to the mall, and then to FHE. At FHE we watched Charlie (which I didn't really enjoy) and said goodbye to the twins, who are leaving back for Idaho. After FHE Amber, John, Joey, Danny and I went back over to Dylan's house to watch the game. Bella showed up a little later, and we then watched Signs. That was so much fun; we turned off all the lights in the house just to make things even creepier.

I needed a good weekend like this. Next weekend, we are having a guy's night at Dylan's place, then a regional YSA beach party the next day. This is gunna be sweet.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Heavenly Father truly answers our prayers- even if he chuckles first

This is the current forecast for Volusia County

Tonight: Partly cloudy, with a low around 72. North northeast wind between 10 and 15 mph. 

Sunday: Scattered showers and thunderstorms, then periods of showers and possibly a thunderstorm after noon. Some of the storms could produce heavy rainfall. High near 86. Windy, with a northwest wind between 15 and 25 mph, with gusts as high as 30 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%.

Sunday Night: Tropical storm conditions possible. Showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm. Cloudy, with a low around 72. West wind 25 to 30 mph becoming south. Winds could gust as high as 45 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%.

Memorial Day: Showers and thunderstorms likely. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 88. South wind around 15 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%.

Monday Night: Showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 74. South southeast wind around 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%.

Tuesday: Showers and thunderstorms likely. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 86. South southwest wind around 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%.

Tuesday Night: Showers and thunderstorms likely. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 72. South southwest wind around 5 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%.

Wednesday: A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 89. South southwest wind around 5 mph. 

Wednesday Night: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 70. South wind between 5 and 10 mph. 

Thursday: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 89. Southwest wind around 5 mph. 

With this being possibly my last full summer in Florida, I have been praying for a beautiful sendoff with the weather. Guess I woke up to this morning: TROPICAL STORM WARNING!!! WOOOHOOOO!!!!!! It's not even June yet,(June marks the beginning of "hurricane season") and already we have had TWO tropical storms. This season is gunna be SWEET! Seriously, if I don't have to work Monday, I am so going to the beach  Sunday night. Oh, and notice how we are already hitting 90? Well, that's not supposed to happen this early in the year. So, that basically means that when you include the fact that the ocean never cooled off because we had a mild winter and the hotter-than-normal temps now, there is gunna be soem serious action this year with the weather. Totally psyched!  

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

timely quotes

So, for the past few weeks I've been back and forth about applying for BYUI right now. I haven't been sure if I would be able to come up with the money to do it. But today, as I was thinking about it, I remembered something my good friend and mentor Rick Singler said: "The Lord wont help you if you don't trust him all the way. If you keep one hand on the exit door, he can't pull you forward." With that in mind, I'm just gunna do it. If I get enough from my Pell Grant, I could easily live off that for a semester at least. I'm still gunna keep applying for scholarships, but now at least I feel confident about my decision.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Missions and Marriage (another rant)

On the Voices for Virtue Facebook page, this question was posted:

THERE IS A BOY I like and he is an active member in the church. He told me that he doesn't know if he is going on a mission, that he doesn't feel that the Lord called him to. I told him to just pray about it and go get his patriarchal blessing when it's time for him. Is that right? IS IT WRONG NOT GOING ON A MISSION ? Or MARRYING SOMEBODY WHO DID NOT GO ON A MISSION? Thank you!

This is my response:

All young men should prepare to serve a mission; however, not all of them will. There is a myriad of reasons why not, but none of them inherently make a young man bad. Just because someone didn't serve a mission should have no bearing on a marriage decision if the young man is worthy and committed now. People talk about how they want certain qualities, but they look for superficial sings of those inward qualities usually. Being an RM is great, and is a great litmus test, but it shouldn't' be a requirement. While most RMs are worthy and good people, and many served for the right reasons, such isn't the case for all of them. I know of one missionary who served in my ward when I was 16, who fathered a child on his mission. He also served a full 2 years. And if you ask any mission president, he'll tell you that there are some kids out there who should have waited or not even left in the first place. Holding the "I wont marry you" over a man's head is a terrible way to motivate him for a mission. There are only two reasons a man should serve a mission: Because he wants to serve the lord, and he just HAS to share the gospel. That's it. That's what my bishop told me years ago when I was 19, and he was right; I wasn't ready then, and I would have made a terrible missionary then. But even if a young man never serves, that shouldn't be an automatic disqualifies for marriage. Eternal Marriage is a prerequisite for salvation; is not serving a mission honestly such a sin that it would bar a man from the Celestial kingdom? Of course not! If Alma and Paul can repent from actively trying to tear down the kingdom of God, than certainly a young man can repent from indecisiveness. And to tell a young, or old, man that he is unworthy of YOU because he didn't serve a mission is purely arrogant. Who are you to say you're better than him, because if you say he's unworthy of you for not serving a mission ,what you're saying is you're better than him. Even if he didn't serve because of worthiness issues, if he has repented what's the issue? To say that a man isn't worthy because of something he has repented of is a slap to the face for Christ and The Atonement. When you say that, you're saying The Atonement isn't good enough for him. If a man is worthy and committed now, what's the issue? In the end, RM status isn't important; it's the status of his heart and actions that is.

Any questions as to how I feel? 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Update: NEW JOB!

So, as you can probably tell from the title, I am once again a part of the 91.8% and not the 8.2%. It's a great feeling. I'm working for this quaint little grocery store called Perrine's Produce. It's a neat little place. Everyone does everything. Seriously. And here's an awesome addition: they have no dress code. That's right. Jeans and a t-shirt every day, and I get to grow out my goatee again. Actually, I'm gunna do a full-beard. Oh yeah. (I'll likely shave it off after about a month, because I don't look good with a full beard; however, I look great with a goatee.) Well, I'm off to shower and sleep. I have to be up at 5am tomorrow.

I got a chuckle from this.

Remember my post about modesty a few months back? Well, I found this pic on my friend's Facebook today. I got a good laugh from it.

Friday, May 11, 2012

as long as I'm talking about music

Sorry this post kinda rambles- I've tried to organize it the best I can, but my brain doesn't' seem to be working right now.

Look, life is full of emotions. Some are pleasant; some aren't. That's how life works.   In Moses 6:55 it says "...and they taste the bitter, that they may know to prize the good." Music is the same way. For those who aren't familiar with western music, there are seven standard scales to which most music is written. (I am not including the blues scale or pentatonic scales.) Three of those seven are "minor", which means they convey an overall sad emotion. While that can easily be explained mathematically, I believe there is an another reason for that- sometimes people want to express sad feelings. We see it all the time in visual arts, especially with the impressionists. But for some reason, people have this belief that music should only be happy. It's as if the only musical modes that should exist are the Ionian, Lydian and Mixolydian. It's as if people don't want to accept the fact that life is sometimes Aeolian or Dorian, and even a little Phrygian. (I like that way of putting it. I think that was cleaver.) Say what you want, but as far as I'm concerned, art, in all of it's mediums, is nothing more that an expression of emotion, and sometimes that needs to be a negative emotion.

I think this kind of spreads from a larger stigma, that all negative emotions are wrong and sinful. I can't tell you how many times I have hear someone accuse a depressed person of being depressed over sin. I have been told myself to "just be happy." When my cousins killed themselves, I wasn't happy about a damn thing. The world sucked. Life sucked. When my grandpa died of cancer, I wasn't sure what to think. I'm not the only person who feels this way. It's normal, and perfectly acceptable. Wallowing in misery is not the same as feeling sad, and if someone wants to write a song as a way to cope with his or her feelings, than let them do it.

There is a difference between music that wallows in misery, and music that expresses normal sadness. A lot of Metallica's music wallows in misery, and is in and of its self very angsty, which is why I don't like most of their music.

 Inversely, Megadeth has several songs that are sad, but don't cross the line. Dace Mustaine is a brilliant song writer, and a genius lyricist. He knows how to express emotions and thoughts perfectly. He also an a real knack for writign music that perfectly fits the lyrics he's written.  This coincides wonderfully with Marty Friedman's talent as a guitarist. I have listened to literally millions of musicians, and I don't feel that any of them can express emotion the way Marty can. He has a perfect blend of classical influence, mixed with eastern feel, and most importantly a good ear. He lives music. He is the perfect example of the marriage between the scales of classical with the feel of blues. These are a few that come to mind when I think of Megadeth songs that appropriately express sad emotions.
( I know most of my readers are classical buffs, but give these songs a listen. They're worth it.)

1) Addicted to Chaos.
This song was written by Dave Mustaine after he found out that his good friend, who had mentored him though drug rehab, had died of a drug overdose. This song's lyrics perfectly describe his transition from grief (All these normal people/ will I find another one?, I said I need you/ does that make me wrong? Am I a weak man/ are you feeling strong?) to the determination (Light shined on my path/ turned bad days into good Turned breakdown into blocks/ smashed 'em 'cuz I could) that typically follows this kind of loss. The overall tone of the song also fits perfectly with the tone of the lyrics, especially Marty Friedman's solo.

2) A Tout le Monde
This song, according to Dave Mustaine, was inspired by a dream he had where his mom came back to life for one night so that she could say goodbye to everyone. He said the lyrics describe how he felt losing her, and how he felt when he died (saved at the hospital.) He says the chorus is what he would say to everyone if he knew he was going to die. (The chorus translates to "To all the world/to all my friends: I love you all/I must leave."

3) In my Darkest Hour
This was inspired by the death of Cliff Burton, who had been Dave's band-mate back when Dave played for Metallica. The lyrics themselves are about his ex-girlfriend. I personally have found the lyrics to be very fitting for all the emotions I went through with my breakups with both Melinda and Laura.
(This song picks up speed an intensity halfway through, so my classical fans may not like it as much.)

4) I Though I Knew It All
When the crap hit the ceiling with Laura, and I realized our relationship wasn't going to last, I rode down to the boardwalk to gather my thoughts, and to have a quiet place to be when I called her to break up (which I wish I had just followed through with.) As I was there, this song came on my mp3 player. The lyrics just stuck into me, describing how I was feeling at that exact moment. I don't know the history behind this song, but I know what it means for me.

Basically, we shouldn't shun music that express sadness just because it's expresses sadness. There is a score of human emotions, so why not song emotions?

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Drop-tuning is a cheat code

This graphic shows the standard tuning for the 4 pitches of a guitar.

For a 7-string guitar and 5-string bass, the extra string is tuned to a low b.

Any questions?
 apparently so. 

A few days ago, I was doing some research my my beautiful Jackson DK2M, when I came across a review. In it, the author said it was a good guitar, but it lacked the ability to play in drop-A tuning, and barely played well in drop-B tuning. The problem isn't the guitar- it's the dolt playing the guitar. Seriously, if you wanna be all "metal" and play super low like that, get a baritone guitar. Or, you can bet a 7-string guitar. There is only one reason to drop-tune a guitar: if you're voice can't sign high enough for standard tuning, and you're not man enough to use a capo. 

So many people who play metal automatically use drop-D tuning, which is standard tuning except the low E is tuned to D (D-A-D-G-B-e). Then to be even more "metal", they tune LOWER! First, it's drop-C, which is drop-D, then tune all strings down a step (C-G-C-F-A-d) then drop-B and drop-A. Where does it end? 

This reminds me of when I was in elementary school, and they said Weed was a gateway drug. First, Weed, then Crack, then Meth, ect. Well, drop-D is the gateway drug for guitars. Be smart- Don't start! Wanna play low? Get a 7-string.

Now, on the subject of drop-tuning for metal, STOP IT! The best metal guitarist don't do it, so why should you? No, KoRn is NOT good metal. Metallica is NOT good metal. Megadeth is good metal. 

Here's a list of good metal songs that are in Standard, 1/2 step and 1 step down tuning, the only acceptable tuning. 

 (Yes, I know these are all Megadeth songs. Get over it. Dave Mustaine is one of my guitar heroes. I don't know who told him he can sing, but he writes some dang good guitar riffs. )
Hanger 18
A tout le Monde
Ashes in your Mouth
Tornado of Souls
Good Morning/ Black Friday
Wake up Dead
Foreclosure of a Dream
Kick the Chair
These Boots
This Day We Fight!
Public Enemy Number 1

Saturday, May 5, 2012


So, as a part of my pre-meds, I have to shadow a physician. Well, the YSA adviser Brother Livingston is an Emergency Doctor at Halifax Hospital. I was supposed to shadow him at the Trauma Unit, but when I got there he was in a different section of the ER. So, it started off kinda slow, he was going paperwork for the first hour and a half (and most of the time). After a while though, we went in to see an old lady. It's amazing how accepting people are of others when you just say "he's supposed to be here." All brother Livingston said about me was "He's a med student working with me today". That's it. And people were just completely accepting of it. Well, we saw about a dozen or so people, most of then were having chest pain. We had one guy who was drunk and having seizures, and one transfer from another hospital who had broken her C3-4 vertebrae in her neck. One of the last people who came in had been in earlier. He was suicidal, and had jumped from a moving car. They tried to Baker Act him earlier but couldn't.

It was really cool to see how much fun and how close everyone was. The ER is divided into sub-sections called PODS, and each pod has 12 rooms, with one doctor, one head nurse, one secretary and 4 nurses. Everyone was joking around and having fun. The Doctors lounge was so freaking nice. LCD tv, niiiiiiice furniture, free food and drinks. Best 10 minutes of the day.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

...and the beat goes on

I had two interviews today. I feel they both went well.  The first one was with an ADT dealership. I was actually a few minutes late to the first interview, and the guy seemed annoyed. It was a two part interview- the first part was a group interview followed by individual interviews. The individual interview went very well.

The second one has an interesting story. It is a moving company called "Two men and a truck." I interviewed with them about a year ago, was offered a job, accepted it, and then over-slept and missed my first day. Well, I was riding past their location, and I figured I would give them a try. I filled out an application, and as I turned it in, the secretary asked me if I would like to do an interview right there since the manager was already doing interviews. I figured why not, maybe they had a new one- they didn't. Ben was still there; however, he seemed to not remember me at all. The interview went EXACTLY the same as last time, only this time I see myself being in Pre-Med of Med School.

We'll see how it goes. Haven't heard back yet.

Speaking of school, I started my application to BYU-Idaho yesterday. I am declaring my major as Psychology, emphasis in pre-medical and developmental. We'll see how long that lasts- I found out the most commonly accepted major for Med School applications is Physics, and that Physics majors score better on the MCAT than all other majors, including Biology. So, anyhoo, I've started the application. I have to send off for my transcripts from the Volusia County School Board, which should take about a week. I also need to find out what institute classes I've taken. And, I need to get some dough. I'm poor white boy from the Dirty D. Going off the BYU-I website, I should expect about 6-7 thousand in experiences per semester, so I need about 14k total. I can do that. There are a ton of scholarships out there.

Well, that's the news from Lake Woebegone. I'll let y'all know how the jobs news shapes up.