Friday, August 22, 2003

Two Rachels

Last week Rachel was at a Bridal shower at my mom's house. It was a bridal shower for my side of the family, so she got the opportunity to meet all of my aunts really well. Whether that is a good or bad thing, I'm not sure - but it happened.

Lisa, my sister, brought her little girl, Kate (3), along with her because she couldn't leave her at home during the shower. Rachel went to the party with her mom and twin.

During the shower Kate saw Rachel and her identical twin, Ruth, sitting on the couch and was amazed. She looked them over and didn't know what to think. Finally she went to her mom and said - "Mommy, there's TWO RACHELS!" I thought that was a very cute observation from a three-year-old, little girl.

Thursday, August 21, 2003

Real Ultimate Power

Back in the days of The Hive we used to read from a very funny ninja website called Real Ultimate Power. Pretty much all of our humor was based off of this website for about 3 months. It's pretty funny. I've included the text from the main page here:

Hi, this site is all about ninjas, REAL NINJAS. This site is awesome. My name is Robert and I can't stop thinking about ninjas. These guys are cool; and by cool, I mean totally sweet.

Testimonial: Ninjas can kill anyone they want! Ninjas cut off heads ALL the time and don't even think twice about it. These guys are so crazy and awesome that they flip out ALL the time. I heard that there was this ninja who was eating at a diner. And when some dude dropped a spoon the ninja killed the whole town. My friend Mark said that he saw a ninja totally uppercut some kid just because the kid opened a window.

And that's what I call REAL Ultimate Power!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

If you don't believe that ninjas have REAL Ultimate Power you better get a life right now or they will chop your head off!!! It's an easy choice, if you ask me.

Ninjas are sooooooooooo sweet that I want to crap my pants. I can't believe it sometimes, but I feel it inside my heart. These guys are totally awesome and that's a fact. Ninjas are fast, smooth, cool, strong, powerful, and sweet. I can't wait to start yoga next year. I love ninjas with all of my body (including my pee pee).

Q and A:
Q: Why is everyone so obsessed about ninjas?
A: Ninjas are the ultimate paradox. On the one hand they don't give a crap, but on the other hand, ninjas are very careful and precise.
Q: I heard that ninjas are always cruel or mean. What's their problem?
A: Whoever told you that is a total liar. Just like other mammals, ninjas can be mean OR totally awesome.
Q: What do ninjas do when they're not cutting off heads or flipping out?
A: Most of their free time is spent flying, but sometime they stab. (Ask Mark if you don't believe me.)

realultimatepower.net

So I got chased by an Axe Murderer

My friend and I almost got chopped up by an axe murderer - it's a true story.

Today I was recalling a story from my church mission to Brazil that happened in January 1998. At the time, I was serving with Elder Elias in Santa Cruz. I had been in Brazil for two months, so I didn't really speak Portuguese very well. There was a particular neighborhood in Santa Cruz that was extremely poor. All of the locals advised the missionaries not to go in there because it was extremely dangerous. So naturally, like any other curious 19 year old boy would do, we went in there right away to see what all the fuss was about.

We were shocked to see the run down condition of these people's lives. The old brick road quickly turned into a dirt path about the width of a sidewalk and the trees became denser. After a few more hundred feet the path was only wide enough for one person to walk and we were in the middle of the rough. We looked around and saw a few houses here and there. It was obvious that there was no plumbing back here. How could anyone live back here?

We found a clearing with a few houses and began to talk with an old guy that was hanging up some laundry on a string tied between his "house" and a nearby tree. After about a minute we heard some screaming and yelling and we all looked up at the path to see what was going on. There was a young man, about 20 years old, with dirty, dark hair that had was swinging a full size axe around in the air and hitting stuff. A few women and children were standing about 20 feet away from him, yelling profusely at him - demanding that he stop.

This enraged the man only more and he cut down their clothes line. Then we ran over to their house and started chopping down the side wall. He put a pretty big chunk in the side of the house and knocked down their door. By this time people were starting to gather. We just sat frozen only about 40 feet away - watching, not knowing if we should get involved.

The man was just going ballistic. He stopped for a moment and glared at the people. He looked around for another target. A few people tried to approach him but he would just swing the axe wildly until they stepped away. He almost got one kid right in the head. (Why the kid was trying to get him to stop, I don't know). The man spotted the satellite dish next the little house. (Yes, that's right ... a freakin' satellite dish. Brazilians, no matter how bad their life, no matter how poor they are, no matter their income, will always have a nice TV and stereo. It comes before buying clothes and food for their children) He approached the satellite dish and everyone stopped yelling because they were over come by horror.

Never mind the house. Never mind our tree. Never mind the little kid you almost cut open. JUST PLEASE DON'T HIT THE DISH!!! The man cocked back and came down on the dish, tearing away one of its panels. The silence broke out into a roar and everyone charged the man. After all, how dare he hit someone's satellite dish?

The man swung wildly to back the people away. He ran around and started heading for us. Right at us! We sat frozen. The people started throwing rocks at him, trying to knock him out or scare him away. The rocks were flying all around us, but for some reason we just sat there calmly. Mid-stride the crazy man with the axe spotted two missionaries with bright white shirts and ties sitting in front of him and his whole demeanor changed. He stopped running and calmly sat down in the chair next to us. People stopped throwing rocks and we just sat there looking at each other.

I broke the ice. "Hey, how's it going?" "Good," he calmly replied, as if nothing was wrong. "I'm kind of having a rough day." My companion looked at me, then at the man. "Hey, do you need some help with something?" The man looked confused, as if he had no idea that something was wrong. "No, I'm good."

Suddenly, a rock nailed the man right in the back and he clutched his axe tightly and screamed at the top of his lungs as he lunged out of the chair back at the angry mob. Everyone ran in every direction and we took that as a cue to get the heck out of there. Sirens were heard in the distance and everyone started running inside. It would take the police at least 15 minutes to get back there by foot, so we had time to get out of there. The last thing I needed was to get caught by the Brazilian police for being involved in an axe fight. They would be very upset when they found out that a satellite dish was damaged in the attack.

I was amazed at how the man changed when he was in our presence. He saw us and could apparently see that we were missionaries trying to teach the Word of God to the people. He felt our peace, if only for a moment. I'm glad we were protected that day. We left there (running as fast as we could) with a prayer of thanks in our hearts.

Monday, August 18, 2003

I'm lucky when it comes to cupholders

I consider myself a very lucky person ... when it comes to cupholders. When I first got my driver's license I was fortunate enough to be able to use my dad's Dodge Intepid to drive to high school every day. I always enjoyed the comfortable feeling I got when driving that vehicle with a drink. I wasn't worried at all about that thing spilling. After a while we went out and bought a Ford Escort for me to drive to school. It, too, had quite the luxurious cup holding apparatus.

Almost two years ago now, I bought my Acura and have never looked at another cupholder since. The cupholder in my Integra is a pull out tray that just has two holes cut in it. Then the cup or can itself rests on the console with the stick-shift on it. It's perfect! It holds anything from a small can of soda to an XL from Carls Jr.

I've been in my friends' cars when we go to the drive-thru and I'm just embarrassed of their cupholders. They end up putting drinks in the CD compartments or between there legs. That just won't do.

Birthday vs. Wedding

Wow - so I'm getting married in like 5 days. That's pretty soon. It just so happens that the wedding day is on my birthday. Whenever anyone hears that they say, "Well, at least you'll never forget the anniversary."

Headphones are the modern Do Not Disturb sign

There are some days when I just don't feel good. These are days when it is nice to be able to just come to work and relax and surf the net (and write blogs). This is one of those days.

I've found that the best way to keep people from bugging me is to put on headphones. For some reason people do not want to disturb you when you are listening to music. It might be more to do with the fact that my back is turned to my office door so they are just afraid of sneaking up behind me when I can't hear them. But I also think it has to do with the fact that it makes it look like you are concentrating on something and blocking out the outside world.

When, in fact, you are just enjoying some nice Avril Lavigne or [insert your favorite artist here]. Sometimes I even put my headphones on and don't even turn on the music so I can hear what people are saying while thinking that I'm not listening.

Steal money from your mom electronically

eRentPayer is proud to announce a new feature. Now, with eRentPayer's bleeding edge technology, you can steal money from your mom without the hassle of stealing money from her purse. With ERP's advanced features, you can debit the money directly from her account and do a direct deposit into your personal account. Stealing money from a purse is so 90s, get with the times and sign on to eRentPayer today.

~~~~~

The reason I say this is because this actually happened last week. Some guy in Orem had an agreement with his mom that he would pay half of his rent and that she would pay the other half. She logged on, put in her account information, made her payment, and logged off. Then, the very next day he logged on, and noticed that in the pull-down of accounts associated with his login he saw his mother's bank account information. So, rather than typing in his own account and making the payment like he agreed to, he just stole the money from his mom by making the payment from her account!


Finally, somebody put eRentPayer to some good use. hahaha. We are now adding some new features to associate BankAccount entities with UserObjects (logins) rather then Persons. This is a good security feature that only came up because some kid stole money from his mom electronically. I still can't believe he did that, though. Did he think she wouldn't find out? I mean, it's HIS MOM.

Sunday, August 17, 2003

Perks Gone Wild

Banta has recently been giving out these coupons for Carls Jr. One of them is stupid - "free fried zucchini with purchase of ... " Uuuuhhh, zucchini? Are they serious?

Another is pretty cool. "Free Six Dollar Burger with purchase of ..." Now that sounds good to me. But I always that it was weird that the six dollar burger doesn't cost six dollars. It's kind of like 5 buck pizza costing over 10 bucks. Why did they name it 5 buck pizza if NOTHING on their menu actually costs $5.00?

The last offer was the only good one on the coupon sheet. "Free Western Bacon Cheeseburger ..." Holy crap that thing was good. I went and got another one from HR today so that I could go have another one for lunch. Maybe I can convince them to just give me a whole stack of them.


All these coupons got me thinking. It's very funny that Banta gives these out to employees. I mean, they pay all of use well over $50,000/yr. What kind of perk is a free cheeseburger? Doesn't everyone here make enough to buy a cheeseburger every 2 minutes?

UPDATE: It's amazing how things change as you get older. I'm re-reading this post on 20 Feb 2007 and the zucchini actually sounds really good!

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Drink Big, Win Gas

I went to Taco Bell today to get one of those "Stuft Burritos." I wonder why they didn't spell "stuffed" right. Maybe they were so full from eating them all day that the extra effort to write a "FED" at the end was just too much. Or maybe Taco Bell is trying to appeal to the youthful Internet Generation that never types anything out. (e.g. brb, wtf, asap, ttyl, ^^)

I noticed that the drink that I got with the combo had one of those peel sweepstake thingies on the side. I never win anything. It wasn't even worth my time to check. But then I thought - well, why not. Peeeeeeeeel. WINNER! I won something! I think that is the first time I have ever won anything in my entire life. I looked down and read the text. "YOU WIN REGULAR NACHOS" Aw man, that sucks. If you just go in and get nachos you'd have to buy other stuff, too. By giving out free nachos they are only guaranteeing return customers.

I also looked on tacobell.com to see how many of these suckers they were giving out. I then saw that I was actually super unspecial because there are almost 2 MILLION free nachos given out. (http://www.tacobell.com/gas/)

It's also hilarious what their theme is for the giveaway. DRINK BIG WIN GAS. I think that anyone who goes to Taco Bell will go away with gas. So you don't have to really win anything to get that. :)

Monday, August 11, 2003

Feet and Head should be segregated

I know some people who sleep facing one way on the mattress, and then the very next night they put there pillow on the other side of the mattress and sleep facing the other way.

To me that is really gross. I don't know how they do it. If I am lying down and I know that my feet, or someone else's feet, were there before and my face is now flat in feet germs, there is no way I'm going to fall asleep.

I would just sit there and worry about all the bacteria from the feet getting on my face. I can only think of one exception to this rule, and that is the couch. All kinds of gross stuff is on the couch. People lay down there all the time when they are watching TV, but there is not a right or a wrong side to lie down on the couch. For some reason that fact that it has a more textured surface makes me feel better about not getting bacteria. But as far as mattresses go, keep your feet on one side please!!!

Sunday, August 03, 2003

No Drano for you

Jason was on his way home from his friends' house and realized that we needed some Drano because our shower drain is totally clogged up. Also, it wouldn't hurt to get some Comet because the tub is getting kind of funk-de-fied. So, he thought it would be nice to swing by the grocery store and pick up the cleaning items so that we could finally use our shower again and not have to use Stuart's shower.

I happened to be outside as he pulled in so I went over to see if he needed any help. He popped open the trunk to reveal a bunch of groceries ... but where was the Drano? The Comet?

I've noticed that whenever you go to the grocery store to get something, you end up getting everything except the thing you went to get. He would have gotten Drano if he had walked by it at the store, but where is the Drano aisle anyway?

The grocery store business model seems great. You go there for something, buy tons of stuff, and then don't even get what you wanted. So then you have to go back later to get it and you end up buying 2 million things along with what you went to get.

Stuart went to get some cake for Jason's birthday and then ended up buying tons of groceries for himself, too. Anyway, our fridge is full but we still don't have what we need yet.

Saturday, August 02, 2003

New World Closet - The Laundry Machine

I think it has been a week now. How did I make it this far? I did my laundry last weekend. It is now Saturday night. Every day after I get out of the shower I go to the dryer to get my clothes for the day. It makes for a good place for extra storage, not to mention I completely avoid the hassle of folding clothes and putting them away.

The other funny part is this - when was the last time anybody else in my house did laundry? I don't recall anybody using the machine for about two weeks before me, which means both Stewart and Brady haven't done laundry for almost a month. I'll discount Jason from this roster of no-launderers since he was on vacation and most likely did laundry right when he got home.

I, by no means, am the one who can point fingers. I once went about 2 months without washing anything. Every time I ran out of clothes I just went shopping and bought more. Seemed to work for a while, but it was getting really expensive.

Friday, August 01, 2003

First Date Thursdays

It seems to me like the general "single" population is not taking advantage of Thursdays like they good be. I think that Thursdays are absolutely the best day to go out on a first date.

Think about it. If you are having a good time with the person, then you can hang out with them for about 5 hours. (7pm - midnight) If you REALLY like each other then go ahead and hang out longer. It's okay to be really tired for a Friday since you'll have Friday night and Saturday to rest.

If you don't like each other, then at about 8pm you just start saying that you have homework due tomorrow or you need to be at work at 7pm, so you better get going. So you just get stuck with the dinner and then that's it.

These excuses are great for a weekday, but would never work on a Friday or Saturday. All of us have been on the so called marathon dates that go for hours and hours. If you don't like the person you are with, there is nothing worse.

Thursdays have the feel and freedom of the weekend, but are safer for both parties. I've been on Thursday first dates where I got home before my roommates got home from school. And I've also been on one particular Thursday date that has turned into a marriage :) (We stayed up until 4am talking)