Saturday, February 28, 2004

Uh, Is This Thing On...?

What, is this an audience or an oil painting?

So last week I did a stand-up routine for my ward tallent show. It was pretty funny if I do say so myself. Just for kicks, I'll put it in here:

"Thanks, thanks. They wanted me to perform and seeing as how I have no musical tallent, this is what I do. If you don't belive me, wait till the second half when I will sing (and I did). It's good to see such a good turnout, and so early in the show. This ward looks a lot smaller when sacrament starts at 8am. Usually we have about three people, and that's the Bishopric. So anyway, how is everyone doing tonight? Did you all arrive in safety? You know how that is important. Otherwise every man woman and child will have to pray in church next Sunday, “to please bless those who couldn’t be here this week so that they will be here next week. And that we will all arrive home in safety.” It’s protocol. You know.
We do some funny things in the church. We have to say those things that everyone expects us to. When we bless the food, it must “strengthen and nourish us”. There is no way around it. And don’t you think for one second that it can “nourish and strengthen us”. That would be almost like sacrilege. That would make us look at each other during the prayer and realize that everyone else has there eyes open and make us think less of them for it.
We can be pretty strict of each other in the gospel. We think that some people should be totally perfect and that others have a “get out of sin free” card; usually ourselves and celebrities.
Like when I was in Hawaii I had one woman tell me once, “You know, (puffing on a cigarette) our Bishop isn’t a good example. (Exhales the smoke) He went to Tesoro gas last Sunday because they had a special deal on gas, 5% cheaper that day.”
“I see, how did you find out?”
(Another puff) “I was behind him in line pay for my Miller Genuine Draft.”
I’m not justifying the Bishop’s practice of Sunday purchasing. It sickens me that he would do that! Last April I was trying to watch Showgirls on TV but instead Hinkley was on TV! Some sort of Conference thing… On a Sunday! Even the prophet was working on that Sunday.
You know, I think that sometimes we forget that the prophets are and were real people. Don’t you ever wonder what goes thru their minds? I mean the stuff they didn’t put in the scriptures. We know from the Book Of Mormon that Moroni saw us and our day. So, when did he write these things? When he was on a small camping hike from South America to upstate New York! All the while knowing that he had wild Indians on his trail trying to kill him! And he wasn’t traveling light. Imagine all the heavy gold and brass and other metal scriptures. Then he gets a vision of the fat drunk lazy truck drivers; hauling trailers that were bigger than his idea of mansions down a paved road in the middle of the desert.
“Yeah, Bubba, I got to haul this whole load from Memphis to California! Its tuff, but I manage.”
“Tuff?! Follow me for one day!”
Then he saw the new versions of the book of Mormon. You know the small new ones? They are about 4-5 in wide and 6 in long. They easily can fit in your pocket. The paper is so thin you almost have to break out the tweezers just to turn the page. I got a pair when they came out because they were so cool. I then had to spend a grand or two on Lazik just so I could read the darn tiny print.
Moroni takes it in his hands, “What in the name of Nephi are these things?...The book of Mormon?...You mean that I hauled 30lbs of pure gold from Porte Vieira to Palmyra while dodging saplings when God could have just given me this stuff in a stylish leather case? Well, at least it’s all there…What the….Where is the book of Lehi?...He what?!....Geez, if I knew that Martin Harris was just going to loose it anyway, I would have taken that 5lbs of weight out of my backpack! I think I will have some choice words with him at the bar…the gold bar.”
Then we have Brigham Young. You’ve got to wonder if he is somewhat bitter when he sees a Mormon family of 8 driving from East coast to West coast in their big comfy Suburban. “Oh, well I guess it is o.k. It’s not like those cars would have made it out here on these kind of road conditions anyway.”
Then he gets a vision of the Jeep and Hummer. “Ah….I feel like saying something that J. Golden Kimball wouldn’t dare repeat.”
That’s why I think that some prophets were just made to be in the times that they were. It would seem out of place to have some of these prophets using modern technology. If Joseph Smith was still a few hundred years later, he wouldn’t have even needed Oliver Cowdry to be a scribe; or anyone probably. He would just go to his fancy new age laptop, “Prophets Log: Stardate 10 dash 8 point 2. I Nephi having been born of parents goodly…uh… wait. Take two in 3, 2, 1. I Nephi having been born of goodly parents…”
Tanks, I’m Jared Bodine. You’ve been wonderful and laughed enough. Arrive home in “peace and safety”. And obey all traffic laws on the way. Good night."

One thing I realized is that people who are from other countires (about half of the audience) just dont get much of the jokes. That and I speak fast when performing. Oh, well. I think it was good no matter what others say...and we do all know that I am the funniest man on the earth at this time, right?

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

And that's about the time she walked away from me
nobody likes you when you're 23
and you still act like you're in Freshman year
what the hell is wrong with me?
my friends say I should act my age
what's my age again?
what's my age again?

Blink 182 - What's My Age Again?

That was kinda a theme for me last year. I used to think that 23 was old. My girlfriend of last year actually had to remind me of my age, I forgot it. I also used to wonder if my wife and I would have a child by then or decide to wait for a bit longer...I guess the answer was wait.
I think that in many ways I have reverted to a simpler mind. It's numb, but comforting.

When I was a kid my shoes would never last. They would be worn out in no time. Most kids would out grow shoes. I was too busy tearing them up. Yesterday, my only pair of good tennis shoes had a lace break on me. I did the same thing I used to, tie it up anyway and make an odd knot. My slippahs are all worn out and I still wear them, too. I actually have worn a hole in the sole of one, but I still play.

In Arizona I was a working professional with a real company. I drove my nice new car to work everyday. Now I am back to 17 where I know my mechanic, Mike, all to well. I actually say to him, "See you next week" everytime I go there. And it holds true. I like to use not having a car as an excuse for not dating, but just like high school and jr. high, they don't seem interested any more and those I do ask say no.

I used to blow off homework for no reason and spend time organizing my music to an anal extent. Last night I planned on doing homework but instead I just copied songs from my minidisc to my computer and organized the music. I did this till 2am and did absolutely no homework at all.

As a child, I had at least one scab at any given moment. Usually on my knees. I have been riding a friends longboard around and occasionally hit a rock. I have a gracefully fall/roll combo. I do end up with pretty scabs on my knees. I have a pair of jeans with holes in knees that help to show them off. I haven't worn pants like that since pre-mission days.

I brought my Game Cube with me to Hawaii. I played it maybe once all last semester. I have now played games a good solid 5-10 hours a week this semester.

I think that 23 was my plateau. I was up and up, then, rollercoaster back down; and the ride sucked. I don't know, but I think if my prime was 23 and it's all down hill from here, I'll be back in diapers before I have kids that are. My poor future wife will have 2 kids to change. I won't kiss her. I'll just punch her in the arm and run off. I had better success at that. If I go back to not brushing my teeth, I can lose them all and go back to mashed food. I don't think losing my hair is in my genes, but I was born with a full head of hair anyway.

I'm not sure I am 24 or 22 at this point. If my calculations are correct, I will be 18 again by 2008 and by 2014 12yrs old. In 2020 when I am six I will move back to Phoenix and play in my tree house, I'll be that crazy guy who no one bugs living in the park. When we reach Nov 2026 I'll be in a comfortable fetal position all day long. Getting older isn't that bad after all.

Over all, I actually miss 23. It was the best and worst year of my life. Dickens was on to something, it can make sense. By the end of 24 I'll get a grip on which way I really am going. I could be down one slope, but just about to hear that ratcheting of the coaster climbing the next hill.

It's been 23 years now
Trying to get by.
Other people make it day to day
I still wonder why...
God Lives Underwater - 23

Thursday, February 19, 2004


I had an epiphany today. I was in my Math 201 class (Discrete Math) and we were going over induction proofs. This is after taking a test on "(A' -> B) <=> (C ^ D) V (A ^ C')" true or not?
As I was looking at this stuff that is required for Computer Science (CS) Majors it hit me. "Oh! So THAT'S why I am an Information Systems Major!" It suddenly made so much sense. First time anything did in that class...

Monday, February 16, 2004

"I'd like to be serious for a moment if I may. Spotlight please.Spot light turns on left of Krusty. He steps into the light saying, "I just wanted to...", just as it moves to the right. He steps right back in the light, "I just wanted to...", as the light moves back to the left. "Come on guys, I'm not doing the spotlight gag, I'm serious this time!" - Krusty the Clown in The Simpsons

I don't think I am the most intelligent guy in the world (my spelling will tell you that). I might just be the most funny guy, however. But today, I did stumble on a thought that I can't let slip away.
Within the last year I learned a lesson that I had never really understood before. I'm sure something just like it was taught to me in Sunday School, but I was probably pulling off my socks and trying to choke the Sun Beams in front of me with my clip on tie. Or maybe it was a lesson in Seminary when I was gazing at Amy sitting next to me and all I heard was my heart beat. All I know is, I was in Institute and something Bro. Brennan said hit me. It wasn't just what he said, although that was good too, but it was an idea that I got from him.

I guess the lesson of this last year has been a tuff one for me to get, but I think I finally do. No matter how hard you try, you cannot compensate for someone else's agency. And to do so would be the plan of Satan, even if you had the best of intentions. Bro. Brennan made mention to the famous quote, "All the world is a stage, and us it's players." He then spoke a bit on how being in this gospel is like knowing the lines. From there my mind went into overdrive.

I have been in my fair share of plays. I have seen them from many eyes. I have been backstage, on stage, in the audience and even up in the control room behind the audience. The most tense moment is when an actor forgets the lines. I think every actor can especially relate to this. But I also think that any experienced actor can attest that the most awkward time is not when you forget the lines, but when someone else does. The whole house is filled with tension. I compare the actor forgetting lines to a person who knows better yet sins. Let's compare the others.

First you have the other actors on stage. This is a good friend level. This is a person you spend free time with, see movies with, and sit around talking about music or movie quotes with. If an actor messes up, they often end somewhere in the middle of what should have been said or will jump over a page or two by accident. That person who transgressed is no longer in the spotlight. It is now the job of the other actors to compensate for the failure by figuring out what next line would be most appropriate. When an actor on stage messes up and I am there, I decide if I can say my next line and not make the other repeat what they just said or if I should also jump ahead and hope the others will know where I am going and follow. Sometimes there are others on stage and neither one knows which should speak next to cover; enter awkward silence.
When someone sins, they kinda put up the feet and say, "Tuff, I messed up. You want it right, you fix it." Then those left knowing the lines have to make right what was wrong with or without the help of the sinner. On stage is not that bad in the scheme of things because if you can see the way out, you have some control and can steer a clear path for all to follow.

Then you have the stage crew. This would be a casual acquaintance. You see them in the halls and say, "Hi" to them each time. You might sit next to them at lunch once in a while. You might as a group of friends go to see a movie. You don't call them just to talk, but you could if you wanted to. These "techies" as they are also known don't typically care for actors all that much anyway. When something goes bad they just wait it out. They don't seem to be that worried at all. They will yell obscenities about the offending actor (usually to each other, but don't care if others hear). They will wait till they hear a cue for a thunder sound effect or whatever it may be. If they know the line was close enough, they might do what they need, the sound or light cue, what ever. They do their job, not much more or less. If the effect is timed off, they don't care, it's the actors fault, and they know it and know that all in the house know. Often the world only gets mad at sinners for the inconvenience they are caused. The have little to no investment in the person, just a secondary goal that partly involves that person. In the end, their work is seen, they might have done fine, but no one remembers them from the performance and glances over the name in the program. They are happy to do the button push when told and if they just do that, they feel complete. How many times do we see it happening and think we will wait for a cue or just do our jobs with little regard for others?

Next we have the audience. They have it somewhat worse. This is like someone in your ward you recognize and might know the name of. You don't really socialize with them and have no relationship with them to speak of. You may think its someone cool and probably look up to them. You watch them from the distance. As the audience they can feel the tension, even if it seems as if the mistake is minor. If an actor is frozen, the audience is twice as attentive as ever and hangs on every decible possible. You watch and wonder what they could possibly do now to fix it. You start to almost cheer in your head for the poor guy. You will him to get the words right, but you know there is nothing you can do. You may even think that if you project your affection hard enough it may work. It never does. Then you begin to bank on the others to salvage the play once you give up on the actor. Either way, once it's over you don't think back to it as a big deal and it's forgotten, you seem only to have remembered it while there and involved. It's amazing how easily it's forgotten in the end.

Last you have the director. This is a parent, Spouse, Bishop or real close friend that you feel responsible for. You have worked with them, spent hours preparing them until you finally feel they are ready. You sit in the audience and watch with close intent. When the actors take all the hard work and training and virtually throw it out the window you merely sit by and watch. Your whole masterpiece and work is affected. You know you did all you could have, yet question to yourself if you should have done more. You think back to where you could have gone wrong or done better. It hurts to see everyone suffer, but like the audience you are with, there is nothing you can do at this point, they've grown up and left. When the performance is over (if it's not the last) you can try to strengthen those skills needed and hope that will do the trick. Again, you are reminded that all you can do is your job and put your trust in others to do theirs.

This past year and, yes, right now I see people in my life who are forgetting lines left and right. With some I get to be on stage and work with. Others I have the pain of being in the audience, feeling like the director.
It used to be that I would step in and offer all kinds of advice, try to steer the play in the right direction, but no one listens to the guy in the audience yelling. They just think he is crazy or heckling. I have forgot my line on some of the same plays they are now, or am so familiar with the text I can repeat it from heart. Yet this time, I accept my fate and do what is the hardest thing to do - nothing. I don't think we fully appreciate the quote of Joseph Smith who said, "I teach them correct principles and let them govern themselves."
It's not a cop-out to getting out of pulling your weight, its the hardest part of loving someone. Letting them make their own decisions regardless of what mess may come of it. Makes you wonder how God feels watching you.
There is my theme of '03-'04.
No matter how hard you try, you can't compensate for someone else's agency.

We now return to regular blogging...

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

"And in the morning when I wake up, I look like Kiss but without the makeup. And that's a good line to take you to the bridge." - Robbie Williams in Strong

I hate waking up early. It's never a pretty sight. To think that some people still try to see me in such a condition. Jessica begged and pleaded with me to go with her to exercise. I caved in like I usually do. My future wife had better appreciate my lack of spine. Most men would put their foot down. Rather, I will offer to put mine up when she vacuums under it.
Back to the point at hand. I was up at about 1:00am when Jessica called to force me into exercising with her at 7am. My alarm went off as planned early. I got up and started to get my things together when I discovered my wallet missing. If you do not have an ID you can not get into the gym. I run all over the hale (dorm) looking for my wallet. I even went to the front office to see if I left it there. After claiming defeat at 7:10 I found it in a drawer I don't normally use. I get to the gym and tell Jessica, "Not one negative word or I will show you My definition of the word "exercise" is by taking a walk through the park on my way back to my bed. Got that?" She said nothing.
As I sat on the stupid bike machine I wondered why people can't do this on a real bike and enjoy better scenery than the unwashed masses that help permeate the odor that makes you feel like an overworked stable boy. As I was pondering how to make a sentence as descriptive as the prior without punctuation, I looked around to see that I was the only guy on anything other than a treadmill. I was not aware of this, but the only exercise equipment men can use is a treadmill or possibly a rowing machine...and there were no rowing machines around. I felt like such a chick peddling with the girls on either side of me. I actually was craving a bon-bon and wanted to read a book in Oprah's book club! That would give me more to talk about when I call my sister Wendy...
When the humiliation was over and I got to leave I noticed how my butt felt bigger. It may have been just swollen from sitting awkwardly. It also could have been estrogen I absorbed from the previous occupant who expelled more water than a drunken Irish man in front of the Blarney Stone. All I know is that if I start to get cramps I will never go to that cursed gym again.
But now that I think about it, being a girl now might have some advantages after all.

  • If someone says something mean I am not expected to forgive them, I have the right to keep the grudge and just pass it off as "issues".
  • If at any moment I don't feel like being where I am, I can cry for no reason and leave the room. No one will ask why.
  • If at any moment I want a guy whom I like to notice me, I can cry for no reason and leave the rest up to him. No one else will ask why.
  • If a guy and I don't agree on something all I have to do is make some stupid Adam and Eve joke which doesn't really apply and storm off thinking victory is mine before he can rebuttal.
  • If there is an argument that does not end with a guy, I have the right to be angry and make him try to make it up to me. And I know he will.
  • I know that as long as there are two or more of my kind in the same room I will end up shooting the opposing guy in any disagreement, right or wrong.
  • If I want to date all I have to do is give some hints to a guy. If he isn't interested and shoots me down I can call him "stupid" for not getting my hints rather than being hurt.
  • If I ever need an excuse I can have the third, fourth, or even fifth period of the month. As long as the guy doesn't have a "flow chart" for my cycle, he'll never know and can never challenge it.
  • Whenever I don't like a product that all women wear, such as high heels, nylons or some types of bras, I can blame it on a stupid male inventor. I will never admit that I chose to wear them to compete with other girls.
  • I can cry about "saving the whales" through my perky and ruby red lips which are only that way due to fat insertion and coloring made out of whale blubber. And no one can call me on my hypocrisy.
  • I have the right to do any seductive action for attention, yet yell at men for noticing it.
  • I have the right to check out girls more than guys do. This is of course for comparison purposes so I can tell men how unattractive I am in a snare to force them into feeding me compliments.
  • I have the right to blame men for my pregnancy even though I was at least 50% involved in the process. (And 100% involved in the gestation period.)
  • I have the right to say the same cliches about a woman prerogative whenever I don't have a valid reason as to why I am doing or saying anything.

That is a short glimpse into the life of She-red. My female self. With that list of attributes you wonder why anyone would want to spend any time with me? It's a wonder men want to be with women for life like they do. I think we should get metals just for putting up women. For a good enough reasons why, see the above billeted items.

Where can I pick up my metals?