Occupying My Time

I may have mentioned that I have been let go from my civilian employer (but I have been meaning to quit so no loss there), my *six month* deployment has been pushed back a couple of months, and I cut my class load back to one class on Adobe InDesign which is about Digital Layout.

I have a lot of free time on my hands.

The thing is, I really enjoy working my creative side, so I thought about this and decided that I would utilize my creative side toward something that could eventually be productive and make me money.

I want to write a book.

And not just any type of book (I've written a gob of unpublishable crap that sits on my hard drive) I want to write a Children's Book.

When I was in first grade or something, I wrote a book about Animals doing fun things. The art in it can be described as cute, as I was quite a little artist at the time. And I've always wanted to go back and rewrite it and get this idea published.

So I was reassessing this little picture book I had planned when I was about seven years old and thinking to myself 'how can I make this idea work for print?' It occurred to me that I wanted to be the artist, but with some creative help, I could probably work on putting this book to verse.

I just hope that the idea is original enough that I'm not infringing on somebody else's creative genius. But the thing is, I had the idea for this book for something like twenty years now.

I think its doable. I just have to figure out the medium I want to work it toward.


Guide for New Parents

Courtesy of DadCentric

There is a right way and a wrong way to parent.

To view more (and laugh yourself hoarse) go here.


Soundtrack Moved

So, I moved my Soundtrack, to the top of the page. Now I noticed with Firefox the music doesn't play until you scroll it into view, but when you use internet explorer then it goes right into play. So, I moved it to the top and altered it a little so it takes a little less room (but for some reason, you can't scroll all the way to the bottom of the playlist but oh well)

I like the soundtrack, but it gets in the way of my videos, and somebody did mention (I only had one complaint, yay!) that they didn't like listening to my music and would rather listen to their own so you can listen to my music or shut it off with great convenience. Unfortunately, it sits at the top of my blog and clutters it. Bleh!

I think I might like a smaller playlist, so I might have to go about searching for one so it takes up less room, or I can put it in the sidebar. Anybody have any recommendations?

Or should I just get rid of the thing?

Edit - Ok, I hid it for now. I'm going to figure out something else to do with that thing.


Yes, this is old, and I'm just getting on the ball, but I thought I would share it anyway.

If you want to see a particularly poignant version, view it to Gary Jules' version of Mad World.

I need to come up with a cartoon and animate it. But I have to get better at modeling first.

Team Obama!

How can I convince people to NOT vote for Hillary Clinton? Do we honestly want this woman as our next president?

Granted, I'm not a big fan of any of the democrats, but this woman is the last person I want to see as President. She is a conniving politician and I don't know what she's saying to get people to vote for her, but I will never trust Hillary.

I do admit that Barack Obama likely doesn't have enough experience for the Presidency, and is a bit on the socialist side for my likings (Hey, he's a liberal, I'm a conservative) but I would much rather see him win the Presidency then Hillary.

So I'm going to campaign for Obama with my Liberal Friends, because I don't think I can convince them to vote for a Republican. Team Obama all the way!

Tagged - Strange But True

Ok, so I got tagged to write 7 strange but true things about myself by Joe over at the Bunker Blog.

To be honest, I don't think there is really a whole lot of strange but true things to write about myself that I haven't already written about. But what the heck, here it goes. For those of you who have followed me for some time, you might already know these things.

Strange But True - 7 Things About Me

  1. I can throw a pot with my feet. I know, strange, and something I've mentioned before.

  2. For a while, I considered my sexual orientation as Anti-Sexual (and discovered that there are other people out there with this view). I never really considered myself as a child of being a girl or wanting to be a boy (I was a huge tomboy, btw) but rather, I just wanted to be me. I didn't want to be viewed as anything and I hated it when my parents forced me to dress up in girly clothes to go to church. It's kind of weird in that I tend to demonize sex a lot in my writing as I tend to view all aspects of the topic. I'm curious about it, yes, but I'm more curious about why people do it. I guess in a way I am still a Anti-Sexual, but I view myself as Straight even though I have an attraction to both sexes. But its more in an artistic way, I see the beauty of the human body, I just don't want to have sex with it. Is that strange about me? I think so. Maybe that's the reason why I tend to refuse to date? It didn't stop my brother in law from calling me a Repressed Lesbian however.

  3. I have a very well functioning Gaydar. There are a few good friends I knew in High School that I had suspicions about but were straight at the time and have later come out as being Gay. More then one friend in this fashion. In fact, when people come out of the closet, it usually doesn't shock me.

  4. I didn't realize I enjoyed writing until my Senior Year in High School. I never wrote before this time, but since I discovered I liked to write, I haven't stopped. My early writing is very painful to read, because my inexperience is very apparent, but I've written probably around the neighborhood of at least 20,000 pages worth of stories. I don't let anybody read them however, for a variety of reasons. See bullet 2.

  5. I have experienced Memory Loss. Not a lot of people can claim this (unless they are a character on television), but I can genuinely say that I have had Amnesia. I remembered who I was, but I had no clue about the date, what I had done, and why I was completely out of my mind. I freaked out pretty bad. Not a lot of fun, but interesting to think about. I had often wondered in my youth what memory loss would be like. Now I know.

  6. I am dysthemic, meaning I suffer from chronic depression. I've come to just accept this about me as a fact of life really, it was a problem when I was younger but since I've grown older and matured a lot, its not a debilitating factor like it could be. As you can see, I'm still pretty frank and honest about myself. For a long time I thought I was probably bipolar because I can get into some crazy moods, I have mentioned that I can act drunk without getting drunk, because I can get really uninhibited. However, these highs are actually not common enough to classify me as Bipolar. So I was diagnosed as a Dysthemic when I was in Kosovo.

  7. i have maintained a webcomic off and on for about six years. I think this in itself qualifies as strange, as most webcomics have a lifespan of about a month. If they get the first post off the ground.

So there you have it, a few strange but true things about me, and now that I look at it, its not altogether strange. Maybe I should think about it a little more, but I can't figure out anything.

I don't tag, so if you want to do this and post in on your blog, be my guest. But, er, maybe you can come up with some stranger factoids about you then I can. I can't think of anything right now.

Snowed In

Today had been interesting, in the absolutely nothing going on in my life sort of way. I was thinking 'gosh, since I'm not working, I should have all of this free time and my creativity should just go nuts and I should be getting all of this stuff done!'

Um, no. Yes, I have put myself on a budget because I have money in the bank, but I got to make it last until I get a new job or go to Ft Knox, and I've still got living expenses. So I've got a few projects I'm working on.

I thought about going out and renting a movie or something, but something else got in the way.

It's called about a foot and a half of snow. I shoveled the driveway with the help of the kid across the street (we started talking about the army, he has the perfect private mentality and plans on joining as soon as he turns 17) but I just gave up when it came to digging my car out of the snow. It just won't stop snowing around here, I'm thinking about trying to go up to the mountain if my car can handle it and taking advantage of the conditions, but, well, I am on a budget right now.

So I did the next best thing. I decided to get my creative juices flowing by doing some art. I don't do enough art these days.

And when I mean art, I mean fine art, not illustration which is what I tend to do more then anything now a days.

I actually found this exercise to help loosen up the creative juices, you grab your MP3 player, put it on random, and draw a picture in the amount of time it takes you to listen to the song. THe song is supposed to help you come up with an idea of what to draw, but I discovered since I haven't been in figure drawing for about five years, my drawings gone to crap when it comes to gestures. I don't think I got a single good drawing out of the mix, at least, nothing worth posting.

But it is a little exercise I plan on doing again soon.

Once I got myself loosened up a bit, I decided to dig out some of my paints and a canvas and paint. I didn't have any idea going into the painting, so I just threw paint on the canvas as an idea started to take hold.

Um, this was kind of where it was heading, and I was just staring at it as I was painting it and thinking 'what is this mess?' It wasn't doing anything I wanted it to so I came up with this brazilliant idea and flipped the canvas over.

Um, it's still nothing fancy. I'm letting the paint dry while I stare at it and decide what I'm going to stick in it. When I paint, I tend to be a little bit on the expressionalistic abstract side, so I have to create a focus for the painting and shove it right in there, probably within the first third of the painting because if it is dead center, it is going to be BORING. Not that this is anything exciting anyway, because I still have no freaking clue as to what I'm going to do with this painting. I think I'm going to put a figure wading in the water with the nuclear sky in the background, but the figure will have to be in bizzarro land colors in order to make this work.

No, it is not done. It might go the way of my last painting, which I hated how it was going so much I covered the canvas in Gesso and am awaiting the opportunity to strike so I can cover it with more paint. Not going to happen anytime soon.

I really need to get back into my art. Maybe I'll put a post where I ask my readers to give me ideas, or something. Because I haven't got a creative flow going and it's driving me stark raving mad!

And I'm snowed in . . . *sighs* Damn that Global Warming


A Piece of Nastalgia for You

Little known fact about me, when I was about 8 years old, I was in violin lessons. And unlike most kids at that age, I actually loved the Violin and enjoyed playing it. I wasn't really that good though.

So me, being the techno geek that I am with all of the toys for doing this kind of stuff, I was set out to do a project for my family that I've been meaning to do, which includes transfering all of our old vhs tapes to digital.

So, back in the winter of 1988, my family filmed a christmas video for my grandparents in California. My dad, who I love dearly by the way, is a complete dork in it and keeps mentioning Metamorphosis and uses a lot of big words while the rest of us shyly look on and get embarrassed when we are in front of the camera.

Me? I'm quite adorable. And also show evidence of being the youngest in a family of eight, and as such, well, I'm a bit of a brat. There is a rendition of me throwing a fit because dad asked me what we were going to sing to the grandparents, I wanted to sing Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, and my sister shouted out "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" first.

So, what did I do? I threw a fit.

But that video is out of season. In the meantime, enjoy a piece of yours truly playing a violin. You might want to turn down the sound, because it is quite painful to listen too.

And it took next to pulling teeth to get my mother to dress me like this. Because I usually had my hair back and wore a t-shirt and jeans with the knees ripped out of them.

Miss Utah should have been Miss America

I don't have TLC, so I wasn't able to watch the Miss America Competition (which I haven't watched in years) but I kind of wanted to see because of a certain SGT Jill Stevens running as Miss Utah. I wanted to watch in support of a fellow soldier running a pageant in an unorthodox manner, and who apparently stuck to her beliefs.

Well, apparently Miss Utah wasn't selected as the final sixteen contestants, but she made the finals because she was voted as America's Choice. Well, she did make the cover of Soldier Magazine, so she had plenty of publicity being a Combat Veteran running in a beauty pageant.

Due to declining ratings, TLC promised change in this year's pageant, but Miss Utah, who is LDS, chose to wear a one piece swimsuit in the swimsuit competition, which is supposedly to demonstrate fitness. Stevens is a 12 time marathon runner and can probably max the male PT test, but because she decided to display modesty instead of her belly button, she didn't make it to the final twelve.

In true military fashion, she dropped upon elimination and did a set of push ups, to the cheers of the crowd, which included members of her National Guard Unit.

A traditional Barbie Doll Beauty Queen ended up winning the pageant, but every article about the pageant seems to mention America's Choice and plenty of people have seem to be in agreement that if the pageant was after real change, they missed their opportunity by disagreeing with the rest of America. Jill Stevens offered a real sense of change to the pageant. She demonstrated moral courage, integrity, and a sense of fun and humor. She is serving America in a role that is still under some contention in the US, as an American Soldier that shows great love for the military. She is a great role model to our youth today, but did she honestly get kicked out of the competition because she chose a one piece bathing suit in favor of a bikini? Or is there a little political influence in the pageant that thought that they couldn't have a soldier serve as Miss America?

So, SGT Stevens, though you will unlikely read this, you did have my vote for Miss America, and if I ever find my way on the battle field, I would be honored to serve with you.


The Status of Today's Society

Society is going to hell. This has been the case for some time now, and I must say that business is helping it get there.

I have to say that by and large, I am an honest person. I try not to lie, I try to give it to you straight. When i was younger, I couldn't understand theft and why people would steal from another person. It didn't make sense to me, because I was kind of sensitive in that I never wanted to hurt anybodies feelings.

Well, obviously THAT'S changed, as I don't care what you think now, I'll do something despite what people say about me, but I always try to do what's right. And one thing I can't stand is a dishonest person getting away with something.

People today are selfish. Everyone is out for themselves and to hell with doing what's right in getting there. But looking at Business, they are doing nothing to prevent people from shoplifting these days. I have been in a store countless times and I can see how freakin' easy it would be to lift a high dollar item. I could be a shoplifting pro if I wanted too, because i've worked retail so much that I know what to look for, and what you can get away with. And in this day an age, you can get away with stealing $100 worth in CDs and have the cashier give you a 'have a nice day' and not do anything about it.

Why do stores not do more to help keep customers honest? I have noticed it more and more that it is more important to keep a person as a customer rather then prosecute a shoplifter in fear of losing their business when they are not getting any business from the shoplifter anyway. The shoplifter is robbing you blind. Have a nice day.

But it seems like it might be against business to prosecute shoplifters because laws these days are more in favor of the shoplifters then the businesses. You just accused me of putting this cd in my pocket? Do you have proof of this? It is fully one hundred percent substantiated? Hah, you didn't get me on camera, I'm going to take you to court for defamation despite the fact that indeed, I stole the CD. But the court is going to back me because you don't have enough proof.

So if you have an employee, such as me for instance, that can't stand shop lifters and want to see the whole lot of them burn in hell, when I get on the case of one and save my employer money by doing a little research to discover that indeed, this product was stolen, guess what happens?

The Employee gets fired and the shoplifter walks away, scott free. Even though, the employee can verify that the product the shoplifter returned was not product properly purchased.

So, the lesson that business is teaching us today kids, is that they care more for keeping you happy then keeping you honest. You see a CD that you like but you don't have the money to purchase it? Just grab that CD off the shelf outside of the camera and employee's view, walk up to the counter and ask to return it. When you can't produce the receipt, and you won't get cash back, tell them you changed your mind and they'll let you walk right out of the store with the product you tried to 'return'.

Indeed, that would be my former employer's policy. Me? I find that bloody ridiculous.

Miss America Pageant

Miss America is on tonight. I'm rooting for Miss Utah.

She's a combat veteran authorized to wear a tiara in uniform. I mean, what is there NOT to like?


Honesty Policy

I had an incident at work that rose all sorts of red flags for me. See, I've been working in the retail business for a long time, and so I've kind of clued into the warning signs of what would be known as thieves.

I may have mentioned once or twice that I hate thieves. In that I can't stand them. If everyone was honest, we wouldn't have the ate up world we do, but there are a lot of dishonest people who are only out for themselves.

So we had this customer do a return that I can pretty much say with great certainty was stolen. In fact, I should go back and ask to look at the cameras as this customer went through our store and see if I can see her pick up the stolen product. But, alas, in this day and age, most stores are more concerned with the mantra of 'the customer is always right' rather then 'we prosecute shoplifters.'

January is a sucky month to look for a job. But I need to get out of retail anyway.


Life Never Goes as Planned

So I dropped two courses, so no blog research paper for me. I was kind of looking forward to doing it, but I was just assessing my probable plans in the next two months and it didn't look wise. One class looked manageable so Digital Layout it is. Actually I like this class and if I have familiarization with Indesign, I know I can get a job. Actually, with the software knowledge I have, I can get a job working with computers which is actually pretty cool. Like a newspaper or magazine place, or maybe even a gaming company somewhere in Utah.

But before I search for a job that doesn't entail stripping magazines, I have to get past this little mobilization I keep hearing about. The one that ends in Knox.

Well, I've heard the latest, and its not necessarily bad, but its not good news. The mob date has been pushed back by two months.

In other words, I didn't have to drop the two classes I thought would drive me stark raving mad.

Actually, they probably would have. Eh, no regrets from dropping out here.


Peak Oil

This is a fascinating site that may spell doom and gloom for some, but in reality this is a very large problem. Just surf this site for a while and think about where your life will be in five to ten years.

Fascinating stuff, oil's not getting any cheaper by any means. Irony is that alternative fuels tend to need, yes, crude oil.

I've always wanted to get some property in the country and make it self sufficient. You know, have a garden, solar power, maybe some horses and goats, so that when we go back a hundred years because we have no power, I will be alright. How much are solar panels anyway, and how effective are they?

That's something I need to research.

Hattip: Julie

Photo Shoot and Photoshop

I've wanted to sit down and do a photoshoot for some time, taking some fun pictures and just play around with them. Well, I did have better things to do but I decided to just go with it.

I wanted to take pictures of me outside my comfort zone, get all dressed up and funked out and do something with the hair and makeup and all that jazz. My sister has a talent for it so she asked if I wanted to get some pictures and I was all 'heck yeah!'

But half of the fun after the photoshoot is manipulating the pictures later. I decided to do something a little different with each one. All of these pictures are taken with a simple snap and shoot camera.

Photoshop is a beautiful, beautiful thing.

This was actually the last picture we took, but it's one of my favorites. I like the punk rocker feel to it. Manipulation was simple. Wiped out all color by desaturizing the pic, then messed with the levels to bring the whites and the blacks out.

For this pic, I made an exact replica of it over the original and gave that a soft light tag. Then between the two layers I placed another that was a dark purple to give it the purple hue cast to it.

This is the punk rocker chick with to much eye makeup look, but I really think this was the only picture to come out without me looking like a crack whore. Two layers, like the previous file, the top file is in cutout and put on Multiply so the bottom layer comes through to give it its color.

I really liked this image and just wanted it to look really bright. I auto-colored it to take the blue cast given by the camera out and then went to the Match Color windo and put everything at maxed out. It's helpful to have a lot of color in the picture to begin with to let this pop out.

I can't for the life of me remember what I did to get this affect. But it wasn't hard and with plenty of playing around in the gloriousness that is photoshop, it isn't that hard to produce. It had some filters involved though, this I know.

I just wanted to whitewash this one out to bring out my very angsty eyeballs that I'm quite known for. Two identicle layers, the top one is on Overlay and using the curve tool, I tweeked it until I got the look I wanted.

The punk rocker outfit, in an action pose that I really liked so I took it and played a bunch until I got it to look like this. There are actually four layers involved, the bottom layer is the original untouched picture, there is a grayscale pic in the layer on top of that that is set at 30% opacity, a color fill filtered in with color dodge at 70% opacity, and the top image is me messing with the selective color, and then putting it at a soft light filter at 80% opacity. It just sounds a lot more difficult then it really is.

I love those boots. That top isn't as flattering as I originally thought however, its actually to big for me.

Another visit to that punk rocker chick, I wanted the look that it was a black and white image with color added as an afterthought, or rather the color was really toned down. I took a double layer and made the top gray scale with a Multiply filter and took the bottom layer through the hue/saturation and desaturated the color a little bit. I also messed around with teh levels, to bring out the blacks and the whites.

This effect is actually quite simple. Take it through gradient map and pick your colors. Viola, this is what comes out. It helps to have very pronounced lights, darks, and minimum midrange for this to really be effective with the pic.

I really like working with multiple levels, the top level is done with an artistic filter of sketch pencil and put on color burn over an untouched picture. It helps to auto color both before you begin.

This picture looked zen to me, and I wanted to put it to some nice bright cheerful colors. Yes, I took the picture, desaturated teh color out of it so it was in grayscale, messed with the levels to bring out the blacks and whites, and then put a gradient under it. You could have done a hundred and one things with the image under it, but this was a default gradient and if I wanted to, I could have messed with it a little more to get a better color combination. Hmm, maybe I'll try something else another time.

I've got a gob more pictures, and I think I'll try some different things with them. But the one thing I've discovered about Photoshop is that you just have to mess with it, try things and see if they work or if they don't. Sometimes they do, sometimes its a disaster, but that's why you back up your files and just go to town. I loveloveloveloveLOVE this software because there is so much you can do with it. I hope you enjoyed my loony pictures, and if you don't understand what I said to get the affects, I guess ignore my little commentary. I'll probably put up some more later.

Latest School Woes

I've run into a dilemma with school these days. Well, aside from the book issue, which has been resolved, sort of, but I think I wanted to give myself an excuse to drop out subconsciously.

Last term I did, I realized that this wasn't really the direction I wanted to go. I love working with the software and everything, but it is something I want to do on my own terms, and this term is going to suck.

For one, I'm taking two classes which are heavy writing intensive, one a research paper that will demand a lot of my time.

I'm supposed to go to Fort Knox sometime in the next few months, and I'm supposed to be there for somewhere around six months, give or take. This is still up in the air, as I don't have orders yet and I am very much well aware that the army can do whatever it wants when it comes to what it needs to do with me. Knox isn't guaranteed, heck, I won't believe it is set until I have set boots on ground. And even then its not certain. They can still say 'hey, we don't need you' and send me home. The army is like that. And this might happen because they are sending me, a female drill sergeant, to an all male basic training post. I'm not counting on anything right now.

As soon as I get my orders, I'm going to take a road trip to get to my destination, mainly to see friends and family along the way and there is no way I'm going there without a car. I went to DSS without a car and it sucked royally.

If the orders say what I think they will say, this is going to mess with my school pretty bad. I'm going to be on the road the last two weeks of school, trying to finaggle homework (to include a majorly huge research paper) and visiting people and, oh, did I mention I need to move out of my brother's house next month? He's getting married while I'm in Knox (good news, I'll probably be able to swing a few days off to come home to attend the wedding) but I'm guessing that the newly weds won't want a roommate hogging up the bedroom next door. This isn't a very big house, and I want to be in my own place when I get back anyway. So I have to plan a road trip, move out, prepare for Knox (meaning I need to really start trying to run as soon as the ground outside lets me), and did I mention I still have a job that I need to work?

As much as I would like to, looking at my homework, and my complete and utter lack of motivation for doing it, I think it might be best for me to drop out of school for now. Or dumb it down to one class instead. I'm going to talk to my adviser tomorrow and see what I can do, but right now I think it would be very wise not to be taking a full load right now. I want to be able to continue to go to school while I'm in Knox as well, but I know I'll be down to maybe a class while I'm there.

I don't know, I'm just seeing the potential problem here and the fact that I would rather not pile my plate completely full and find myself ready to pull my hair out of my head when it is all said and done.

Yeah, that's it.


Anal Retentive? You Betcha!

Ok, so I finally got my books in for class this quarter, except they made an error. And I'm pretty certain they made an error because when I ordered the books I made sure I was ordering them for the right class.

So I got a Geometry book instead. I don't need a f*%@#& Geometry book, I need my research methodologies book, and although I can probably get by this week without it, I will need it by next week and so I will need them to ship it to me ASAP so I can get it without having to worry about it.

However, I'm pretty certain this is their error, not mine, and because college is expensive enough, I'm not going to pay anymore then I have to considering I have to pay to ship this book back to them. So I drafted an email.

Oh, and yes, the invoice they sent me in the mail did mention the Geometry book, but once again, pretty certain that when I ordered the books, I ordered the book I needed and not a geometry book.

My Tactful yet very Persistent Email.

I'm sorry, I didn't pay attention to the invoice, and didn't notice until I recieved my books, but I am 99.999% (meaning pretty damn) certain I had ordered RESEARCH METHODS PKG WESTWOOD - ISBN# 0618556400 but I recieved the book for the Geometry class I dropped out of instead. I need this book pronto, like yesterdary, and I'm not asking to be charged for the overnight shipping on the book you mistakenly did not give me, since if you had given it to me like you should have, I would have recieved it on time. I will be sure in the future to check the invoice closely and make sure that I recieve the books I specifically requested, but now I would like to have the one I need.

Any help on your part to resolve this issue would be most appreciated, and I will send back the Geometry Book for the class I dropped out of ASAP. But since I have to send it back on MY dime when I did not order it, and you sent it to me anyway, I would like to NOT BE CHARGED for the shipping on the book that I do need. If you are unable to resolve this issue satisfactorily, I can resolve this issue by taking my business to another school. Because this kind of stuff bugs the crap out of me.

A hasty reply will be appreciated. I'll be home pretty much all day tomorrow (Tuesday).


PS - Just to clarify that once again, pretty certain that this is your error and not mine.

Think they will get the hint? Or is it not threatening enough?

Soundtrack Added! Yay!

Ok, if your sound is on and your browser supports it, you will probably hear some music in a moment. Now, I can understand if you, like me, get a little annoyed when you visit a website and music suddenly pops out of nowhere. Well, I suggest you do one of four things if you hear it.

A) Sit back and enjoy, I tried to pick songs that were low key and soothing (or depressing) but none should be obnoxious I would hope.
2) Scroll down and hit the pause button. The player is on the bottom of the page.
III) Turn the sound off your computer so you don't have to listen to it if you choose not too.
f. Close the website after voicing your displeasure in my music tastes in the comment bar of my blog. I will probably ignore your complaint however.

Life is better when a soundtrack is added. I'll put songs I like on it at random.


Researching Blogging

So, I've figured out what I want to research for my research paper. I'm going to do a paper on Blogging. I might see if I can get some quotes from some bigger bloggers (if they have the time to respond, which I might not be able to get) but because everybody has a blog these days, I can probably find somebody to quote as a source.

To make this a sociology issue, I thought maybe I would bring into terms about how people use blogs to keep people up to date on their lives and how they use them for a variety of topics such as news sources, a one person editorial, journals, or whatever else. I think I can get enough sources that it might make a worth while topic. I'll post my findings when I turn in my research paper too.

Of course, I have to specify that indeed it is my findings. They are pretty big into making sure you cite your sources and all that jazz.

Meanwhile, I noticed that I tend to write a lot. The snow is melting, I think I'm going to try going for a run sometime this week. Hopefully I don't slip and crack my head open on the ice.



Life continues, sort of.

I've been spending the last few days watching Season 3 of Lost, Drawing, Sleeping and working on homework. I need to work on homework more often.

I've also been working at work, but fortunately they have been pretty small shifts that aren't that big of a deal.

So I haven't been doing much of anything lately, so my sisters talked me into going to see Juno with them. Cute movie, funny, I laughed. I think I'll end up buying it. Though the moral lesson isn't always the best, I think in the end she does the right thing. Probably one of my new favorite movies to come out last year. I need to update my movie post.

My brother plays Call of Duty 4, a lot. The multiplayer online deathmatches are interesting to watch, because the entire time I'm critiquing it because it is obvious why you get killed so much in this game, because everybody flags everybody else (of course, fratricide is optional), there is absolutely no MOUT techniques used and people rush into fire zones all the time. Oh, and nobody really cares if they die or not because they'll just respawn. Overall for a video game it is pretty realistic, i hear the campaign mode follows more rules of war but I can see using this game as an example to privates of WHY we don't do certain things. Like flag our battle buddies.

Overall I'm feeling better though. I need to get on my homework now however.


Blogging is Fun

I've got a bunch of cousins and family members that blog now, telling others about their lives and their families, and here I am, single, in school, and right now probably the most boring person on the planet.

It's bizarre to think that I've been blogging for six years now, and when I started this thing was not that big of a deal. In fact, it will take me a while to get all of my archives up but that is one of my goals before I hit the Trail (the trail being Drill Sergeantese for training soldiers).

Well, anyway, like I mentioned before, right now I'm feeling a little under the weather, and one thing I've noticed is how little I post pictures of anything these days. But I don't really have the camera I want (my sister Arah has a great camera and its along the lines of something I would like to eventually get for myself.)

But whatever the case, here is some pics of me, in all of my glory, taking pictures of myself with my first digital camera, which is awesome for these kinds of shots because it has a flip up viewfinder so you can position yourself exactly in the frame as you want to see it. However, it doesn't zoom out as nicely as I would like, but it does take great (although relatively small by today's standards) pictures.

I admit, i do love the winter, and the snowboarding greatness it allows me to take part in, but the thing I do not love about the winter is what it does to my skin. I have the world's worst skin, and I never help matters with it. When I get regular son, it seems to do alright, but when I'm indoors a lot, like I have been, and not being able to exercise and run like I want to on account of all the snow outside, I look pasty and pale and 'bleh', gross.

But the camera does snap pretty good pics of you being all vain and taking pictures of yourself.

I took this right as the phone rang, and I glanced over. So it's a semi candid shot. Hmm. . .

"Hi, uh-huh. Yeah. Oh, don't mind me, I'm just snapping shots of how pale and sickly I look right now while I'm talking to you. I'm listening. . ."

Actually, these pictures kind of betray how I feel. Other then the fact that I look like I have no blood circulating in my face, it white washes the redness under my nose and the fact that my face is peck marked to no end.

Gotta love photography sometimes.

School's Back in Session

So, its been kind of busy what with school starting back up and all. I'm in Management Functions (this class is going to suck), Survey of Research Methodologies (this class is really going to suck) and Digital Layout (I might survive this one). So all in all, this term is not one I look forward too. Bleh.

For Research Methodologies, I have to figure out a topic I want to write about for a Research Paper. I bet I could do one on blogging, lot's of good info there, but I'm not sure exactly. It has to be a topic I can take a stance on.

I was thinking out of the general topics to do one on are:

Women in the Military
Gun Control
Addiction to: (a list of items that people gain addictions to like Pornography, Alcohol, Drugs, Gambling, etc, but I need to focus on one)
Teen Pregnancy and Sex Education
Old and New Issues on the Internet (blogging comes in here)
Influence of Mass Media on Our Lives

We have a select amount of topics that we have to research, and these are the ones that gained my attention. I have to be able to find ten sources to cite for a 12 - 15 page paper. Research papers don't really bother me, its just that this is coming at the beginning of a mobilization, so if I can stay on top of things in school, I should be fine but no guarantees, especially considering this specific class doesn't allow me to work ahead. Bleh. Again.

So, I'm focusing on what I want to do for this class, waiting for my books to come in for my other classes, and I just caught the crud that's been going around. Fortunately I only work a short four hour magazine shift tomorrow and I got the weekend off to recuperate. Unfortunately, well, it's dumped about a foot and a half of snow in town and I'm sure the mountains are going to be fan-freakin'-tastic and I'm caught up indoors with a flippin' cold. I think I need to just try to find some time to relax and chill, drink lot's of Emergen-C and work on homework.

And my comic as well. Yeah, I'm updating it again. Unfortunately I can't remember my password so I have to FTP the files in. Triple Bleh.


Who's Your Candidate?

So with the primaries in full swing, election year is coming upon us *shivers*

I got sent a link to an interesting questionare that will help you discover who your ideal candidate is. Here's my results.

82% John McCain
74% Mitt Romney
73% Mike Huckabee
72% Tom Tancredo
70% Fred Thompson
62% Rudy Giuliani
53% Hillary Clinton
52% Bill Richardson
49% John Edwards
49% Chris Dodd
48% Barack Obama
46% Ron Paul
43% Joe Biden
29% Mike Gravel
22% Dennis Kucinich

2008 Presidential Candidate Matching Quiz

Hmm, McCain looks to be my ideal candidate for the most part, though I find it interesting that Hilary of all people is coming up as my top Democrat *gag!*. I don't trust her and think many of her policies that has her playing as a moderate is a ruse to get her elected.

I'd rather have Barack Obama get elected over her, though honestly I don't agree with his policies as he's a bit on the socialist side. He's predicted to be our next president, I guess I like him as a person, he's got excellent charisma, but he's quite young. I think there are a lot of people who are excited about the thought of finally electing a viable minority which is one of the reasons why it seems like Obama and Clinton are the heavy hitters on the democratic side, but that's about as a good a reason to vote for somebody like the fact that Mitt Romney happens to be a Mormon is the soul reason NOT to vote for him.

I guess for me religion might play a piece in things, but I'm not going to vote for Romney because he shares my faith, I want to vote for him because I agree with his policies and think he will make a good president, but it looks like I'll be voting for the Republican anyway, whoever that may be, rather then the Democrat. Of course, Blue State Washington, it probably won't make much of a difference. We aren't exactly a swing state.



I've gained a snowboarding buddy from my unit. He actually just came in last month and since we both snowboard and I'm always looking for somebody to go with, we decided to hit the mountains together. Yay.

Whatever the case, me being the insanely independent person that I am, I usually try to take my own car with me whenever I go somewhere. My car is my security blanket. But he talked me into meeting him at his place and going up together in his truck. Becuase conditions were icy and it's a good way to save on gas money.

So I drive over to his house, problem is there is like a foot of snow on the ground and he lives kind of out in the country a bit. I just see tracks leading up to his house and think "hmm, that must be the driveway."

Instead, I ended up in a ditch, with no way to go forward or backward. My car is great in the snow, but it can only do so much when I plow it in a ditch.

Fortunately a truck and a tow rope were handy and my car was pulled out safely.

Conditions were fantastic, and the snow on the road kept the crowds away. We hit Silver Mountain this time around and boarded hard, by the end of the day my thighs were killing me.

Yes, great exercise, awesome conditions, and a snowboarding partner that is not somebody I'm teaching to ride for the first time.

Things are good!


The Resolutions Post

Happy New Year!

Every year I make Resolutions, just something to keep in mind of what I want to get done this year. Let's see how I did shall we?

  1. Earn My Hat
    And in earn my hat, I mean my green curve australian bush drill sergeant hat. If anybody has read this blog in the last six months knows, mission accomplished. :)
    • Have all six modules down before I leave for Drill Sergeant School.
      Heh, I had three and a half? Not all lost. Looks like I didn't even need to get them down like I thought I would. I still have Position of Attention Ver Batum.
    • -Better be in better shape then current over the next two and a half months.
      This was assuming I was leaving for Drill Sergeant School in March. . . I broke my foot, you can't really get into great shape when you have a gimp foot.

  2. Make E6/ Staff Sergeant
    I've got my rocker, and it fills good! Pay check's nice too.
  3. Make a decision with School. (stay with current school? Find a new one?)
    I'm kind of on a mixed decision with this. I'm staying with my current school, but I don't know if I'll complete this degree or not. I like some aspects of it, but I don't know if I'm getting the education that will make me competitive in my job field. So yeah, its a bit of a wash.
  4. Get Back Into Painting (repeat resolution)
    It looks like it will go into my resolutions for this year as well. *sighs*
  5. Pay off all current debt (car, best buy card main ones) with an exception of student loans.
    Still got my student loans, but all of my credit cards have been paid off this year. I do have an outstanding balance on my Best Buy Card again (I just bought a new laptop) but if I pay it off in six months, no interest. This is doable. But dang those student loans. Necessary evil.
  6. Roadtrip. California and Utah primary destination.
    It didn't happen. I think a road trip this year is very likely, but California will not be a destination.
  7. Get a better sleep schedule (one where I'm not as prone to sleeping in so late.)
    I still have my slothful moments, but overall I do a lot better about getting up when I need to get up and going to bed at decent times. But overall, I've done a lot better on this then this time last year. Work has been helping with consistent scheduling as well.
  8. Keep ferrets from having to go to the vet for Earplug removals and things of that nature.
    Blaine had a few moments there this year where I had to take him in to get checked out, but he did well in staying away from earplugs and other blockage items. However, considering I don't own ferrets anymore (would like to own some again in the future, if the opportunity arises) but seeing that I don't own any ferrets, this is a completed resolution, right?

Looking back, I didn't make a whole lot of resolutions for 2007. But with the old comes the new, so these are my goals this year.
  1. Paint more (I told you, it would be back)
  2. Max APFT (this is completely and 100% doable)
    • Make at Least 70 points in each event on the male standard (I'll be training males at Knox, I want to be able to do anything and everything I ask them to do)

  3. Accomplish every task on the Confidence Course
  4. Earn a pair of wings (Air Assault, Airborne, whatever, I'm not picky, and Campbell is just two hours away)
  5. Buy a Handgun
  6. Effectively Juggle at least one college class with a mobilization at all times.
  7. RoadTrip (almost certain to happen this year!)
  8. Effectively grab an edge and land it on a snowboard.
  9. Jump out of a perfectly good airplane (Maybe already stated, but if I don't get Airborne, I still want to go skydiving. Or Bungee Jumping at least. Something crazy like that)
  10. Keep a semi regular update on comic. (This might die during mob, we'll see)
  11. Keep Election Year political talk semi civil minded. Unless Hillary is involved of course.
    • Vote for the Winning Candidate.

  12. Don't go stark raving insane.

That should keep me busy. As always, resolutions may be altered over the next few days as I give myself time to think about them.