Sunday, May 31, 2009

new Seaside t-shirt

Antioch, CA
I can't remember the last time I bought a t-shirt for myself. For the past 10 years I've gotten all of my new shirts for free (from BORP, BYUI, the school district, and, most often, from conferences my father attends). Even most of my tech theatre shirts were gifts. However, I really wanted to get a t-shirt from Seaside while I was there and I really didn't want Nina buying it for me. (I had her by me a piece of art work that I really like). I spent all of ten minutes picking out a sweatshirt for the niece. I spent at least 30 minutes trying to find a shirt that fit my style, fit me (I'm large), had "Seaside" written on it, and, lastly, reminded me of Seaside. Nina and I "cruised" (albeit in my truck) all around the area taking pictures and just enjoying each other's company. So this shirt fit all of my wants. Plus it looks really cool.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

On top of the silo

click image to get full view

Patterson, CA

I wanted to take Katie hiking today, but instead she invited me to go to Patterson with the young single adult ward and help paint the top of a 135 foot high grain silo (This grain silo). It was a great experince. I have never done a whole lot of farm work and I loved every moment of this experience. I only wish we would have had time to do more.

(BTC - For Katie)

(BTC - more from the farm)

Friday, May 29, 2009

book deal

Antioch, CA

Nina has been actively attempting to get me to read the book on the right. I have actively been telling her heck no. Well, during the past weekend to visit her we were at her place, I was massaging her shoulders (I love giving massages. It relaxes me so much as it relaxes my victim...I mean friend) when she again mentioned my "need" to read a book about vampires. She said "Just like before [September of 2007], I'll read something of yours in exchange." I did not realize at the time that Twilight was 498 bloody freaking pages long(!), and so I suggested a book I really enjoyed called A Walk in the Woods (which is only 274 pages). So tonight I went to Half Price Books and bought me a copy of Twilight and Nina a copy of A Walk in the Woods. I'll start reading the vampire book as soon as I'm done with my current read - Testimony by Anita Shreve which is actually keeping my attention - unlike the 4 other books sitting on my night stand.

lip balm and enemas

Because I was out on the road last Friday, I’ll share with you two memories today.

There are two things I adore in life. One is kissing the girl you love and the other is food. The girl I have enjoyed kissing the most was KNJ-P. She was a natural at kissing. There had only been one other guy before me, and he had only kissed her once. She was really good and knew how to anticipate the desires of the guy she was with. She had a level of moisture to her lips that felt just right – not to much like kissing the Sahara yet at the same time not like kissing a camel or Niagara Falls. It was a passionate kiss – one that kept you coming back for more, took your breathe away, and meant something to you every time. Whether it was a “make-out session” or a simple kiss hello, KNJ-P made every moment worth being there to kiss her.

But it wasn’t good enough for her to be a good kisser; she took it one step further.

I am 20 to 30 pounds over weight depending on what scales I’m straddling. I love food. There is one type of food I love more than any other – cinnamon. Cinnamon bread, cinnamon cookies, cinnamon cake, cinnamon pull-a-parts, and, best of all, cinnamon rolls.

About 5 months into my relationship with KNJ-P, John and I moved into the house in Antioch. I loved living there. While we were living there, KNJ-P would come over often. One night I saw her putting on some Chap Stick. I hate the taste of Chap Stick. It’s waxy and tastes like you are licking the inside of a Vaseline container. It’s almost as bad as kissing a girl who smokes.

I saw her slather it on and saw that as a sign that our night was going to be very sterile. A few moments later she beckoned me on to come give her a kiss. I loved her so I obliged despite the taste I knew was coming. Or at least I thought was coming.

Somewhere along the line she had discovered a store that sold lip balm that tasted like Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls. Her lips were like the taste you get in your mouth as you near the store in the mall. It was every bit as that good.

We kissed plenty that night.

I share this because I think back on that occasionally. Every so often, a freshman return missionary at BYUI would ask me how to tell if a girl loves you. I think I’ve ruined a few boys with my counter question: “What type of lip balm does she wear?”


As a child I spent quite a bit of time in and out of hospitals. One of the reasons for this was because I had tumors growing in my digestive tract. After the tumors were removed, my digestive tract still had problems processing waste. Every week or two my mother had to drive me out to Stanford Medical Facilities. This next memory isn’t a personal memory, as much as it is a story my mother loved telling about me.

My parents were big on talking to me like I was an adult. So if I was having XYZ procedure, they told me I was having XYZ procedure and they did not telling me that I was going to get sleepy and then the magic tumor fairies were going to come and remove my tumors and feed them to their little fairy children to help the tumor fairies grow up nice and strong. I was having XYZ procedure.

My doctors often talked to me in medical terms as well. I knew the ins and outs of most of the procedures being done to me. I knew what the medications were and what they were used for. I knew how much Slobid to take, and at which times and for what reasons.

One day, when I was 5, I was taken to Stanford to have a liquid enema put in to help soften my stool. I was stripped down and put into a hospital gown. My mother used dice to teach me how to count, so I was playing with my dice when in walked a resident.

Immediately he started talking to me like I was 2 (I was 5 for crying out loud!). I was ignoring him for the most part when he said something that caught my attention. I asked him to repeat it.

“I said we are going to put this strawberry milkshake up your butt to help you go poo poo better.” I freaked.

“No you aren’t! You ain’t touchin me with no strawberry milkshake up my butt!” I exclaimed. “Who are you and what did you do with my Doctor? I’m here for me enntena.” And with that I bolted.

My mother says I left behind my gown and I raced down the hallway yelling for my doctor. My mother said I ducked into rooms and yelled for my doctor before ducking out and moving to another. Chasing me was the resident, and a few nurses, but no one could catch the 5 year-old naked boy running down the halls of Stanford away from the bad man with the butt milkshake. Eventually I found my doctor and grasped a hold of him. He brought me back to my room and had the resident watch as the doctor explained to me that the strawberry milkshake was gone and that he had brought a fresh enema for me. I told him that the other man scared me and the doctor went step by step with the resident “teaching” him how to administer an enema to a very medically smart 5 year-old boy.

My mother’s favorite part to tell was the part where I was running naked into various people’s rooms and shouting about the butt milkshake. She said there were some very confused people in that hall that day.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Sands of the Sea

Antioch, CA

I have a dear friend in Idaho that collects sand from various places (She's got 11 so far from both American coasts, the Caribbean, and even Europe.) I'm sending her this jar full from the Oregon Coast.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Vehicular Bugslaughter

Oakley, CA

To help me sleep at night, I've convinced myself that these bugs were carrying west Nile and swine flu and that I had to kill them before they killed me. As I drove the 700 miles I kept trying to figure out why my lights were dimming. It was the dead carcasses dimming my dead lights.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Rest Stop Scenery

The top one was taken at a rest stop South Umpqua, OR and the bottom picture was taken at a rest stop in Yreka, CA

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Haystack Rock

Canon Beach, OR

See the BTCs for Monday for stuff from today.

Friday, May 22, 2009

spilt ice cream

Seaside, OR

Okay, I know this isn't the best picture for today. I took some really cool pictures of the Portland and Medford Temples and I took a pano of the Seaside Beach. I also took a few pictures of my room. I have never stayed in a room with a couch in it.

Any way, I loved this shot. After the resorts but before the beach is this little bathroom for washing up and relieving yourself. I walked in to wash the sand off my hands and saw this sitting there and couldn't help but feel sorry for the poor kid who only wanted to go pee and set his ice cream down and it spilled out. Sad day for him.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Sunsetting on I-5

Near Corning, CA

not vomitingthis time

Today should be marked in the history books. I am what is called a “sympathy vomiter.” When other people are losing their lunch or blowing chunks – I feel it is the responsible thing to barf along with them. And actually – it’s not just people. It could be cats, cartoon characters or little green men (which sucks for them because it gets all over their space helmets). As soon as I see vomit I’m ready to spew. (Thankfully I’ve never had a wife with morning sickness.)

That is, I did until today. Today, while working with a client the client went into his defense mode and vomited all over the unit. Not only did I not get nauseous but also I managed to keep to what I was doing. As he continued to vomit we discussed my trip to Oregon and it totally distracted me from the cocktail of stomach acid and formula splattered at my feet and on my shoes. This is a day for the history books.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


Oakland CA

I went to a friend's 50th Birthday party tonight. At some point, my friend's wife asked me if I would play with the grand kids so her kids could enjoy some time with their dad. I played ball with this little guy for the rest of the night. When he came over later to say good bye and thank you, he had this 'bwoo' balloon. He kept talking to me through it. It was so cute I had to take a picture.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

new growth

Oakley, CA

Bob and Fred at 4th of July

I’d like to dedicate today’s Fiction Tuesday to Cindy. She helped inspired the following.


There once lived some guys named Bob and Fred. Bob and Fred were from Idaho and they loved to show their patriotism by blowing things up on the 4th of July. For one Independence Day, Bob and Fred were in California. California has very strict rules against fireworks. This saddened Bob and Fred. They had brought all of their explosives with them for their stay in California.

One night at the bar Ted suggested to Bob and Fred that if they really wanted to use those fireworks in July, they should rent a boat and go out into the ocean a few miles. They thought this was a great idea.

On the Fourth of July, Bob and Fred rented a yacht and loaded it up with all of their fireworks. They took the boat out into the Pacific Ocean a few miles and waited for night to come. While they waited, they drank a good portion of alcohol. Before Dusk was upon them they decided they couldn’t wait any longer. They lined up the first round of bottle rockets and shot them up into the air. This was really cool to watch. For the next 20 minutes Bob’s and Fred’s eyes were directed toward the sky and not toward the ocean below them. So what happened next really surprised them.

Suddenly, as Bob was trying to hold his beer in one hand and try to light the second line of fireworks with his other, a shark jumped into the boat. Immediately it went after Bob and started biting his foot. With every bite the shark was moving up his leg. Bob dropped his lighter in his hair accidentally as he tried to get away from the shark, which lit his hair on fire. Then Bob got really scared and dropped his beer as well.

Behind Bob was Fred, who was really freaking out. He wanted to help his friend Bob but was very scared of the shark. Fred grabbed the flare gun and fired it at the shark, but he missed and instead hit the crate with all of the left over fireworks in it. Suddenly the back of the boat lit up as an amazing show filled the rudder and stern area. One benefit of this show was various embers burst onto the shark. This brought the shark’s feast to an abrupt end as the shark tried to get away from the fire on its belly. The shark flopped around until it eventually was able to flop out of the boat and away from that firestorm. While the shark was making its escape, Fred was attacking Bob’s other crisis. Fred took the fire extinguisher and started spraying Bob’s head and shoulders (as the fire had spread to Bob’s t-shirt as well.).

The second benefit of the fireworks show was a passing Coast Guard helicopter had seen the boat and come to the rescue of Bob and Fred. The Yacht was too far-gone and was left to burn and then eventually sink. Bob was taken to the hospital where he had the rest of his leg amputated.

Fred and Bob (once he was all better) returned to Idaho. For the next 4th of July they were invited by some friends to return to California, but after the previous year when Bob had been being eaten by a shark and was on fire at the same time – Bob and Fred decided to stay in Idaho and drink beer and light off fireworks. This year went much better – until they got eaten by a bear. Oh well.

The End

Monday, May 18, 2009

Oh Suck

Pleasant Hill, CA

I realize this picture sucks or is uninspiring. I realize that for the past week I have had that problem. Tonight was my final in Abnormal Psych. After Wednesday, the shots should start getting better again and will be that way until classes start in the fall. In the fall I'm taking some classes that are going to be a struggle for me, which means the shots will probably suck at that point again. But please try to enjoy the summer months. I will try my best to make the summer pictures worth your viewing.

(Also this summer - I'm writing my memoirs every Friday and some Fiction every Tuesday over at Teaching Sean.)

Sunday, May 17, 2009

YouTube: A New Hope

Antioch, CA

I saw this on a friend's family blog, and ever since then I've want to see Star Wars 4 - 6. It turns out several people have put them on YouTube.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

yet another violin soloist

Oakland, CA

After feeling like crap all day long - I went to the symphony tonight. There were two soloists: This lady and some 10 year-old piano playing kid. I was out in the lobby listening to the 10 year-old and playing with a friend's kid, so no pictures of him - but pictures of the violinist for ya tonight.

Take your bike to work day

I work for the health services department at a county. For some reason - they are always promoting good health. This week has been "Healthy Biking" week. Even though every where else Friday was TYBTWD, my county decided Thursday was going to be Take Your Bike to Work Day. They said in the flier it would make us healthier.

So on Thursday morning I woke up a little earlier than usual. I got ready for work and then I went out to the back yard. The last time I rode my bike was in January. So I dusted it off, grabbed my helmet and left for the day. As soon as I got out to the parking lot near my place, I picked up my bike and placed it in my truck bed. I secured it down and drove to work. Once at work I got the bike out, took it into the therapy unit and locked it in the closet. When the day was over, I unlocked the closet, took it out and moved it back into my truck.

I really feel lied to. I didn't feel a bit healthier. In fact, if any thing, my arms hurt from lugging that thing around on Thursday.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Late night snack

Vallejo CA

It was 11:30 And I had almost forgotten to take a postable picture for today. inside the jar are dove chocolates.

3rd grade

I was in Mrs. H’s class when I was in third grade. I remember the year for two reasons: 1. I was in the play Annie and on a certain day all of us in the play wore these shirts advertising the play. Mrs. H had all of us stand in front of the class and tell them. It was bad enough I had to be on stage getting slapped by ‘Annie’ every night, I now had to stand in front of my friends and tell them to come see me get hit by a girl.

The other reason I remember that year was because of the time I almost got medivac’d from campus. For those of you unfamiliar with the 80s, during that decade children had flat desks that on top had pencil boxes. The pencil boxes were at least 8 inches long and had everything but a kitchen sink in them. In them were pencils, crayons, colored pencils, highlighters, tacks, tissue paper, a small ruler, duct tape, a spare wrench, a map to the buried treasure in your parents’ back yard, stickers, a spare change of Batman printed underwear, lollipops, and that white putty stuff that can stick to anything. (Okay – so maybe not all of that. Most kids didn’t have lollipops in theirs.)

On one day, Mrs. H was gone and Mrs. W was there (who also happened to be my den leader and Sunday school teacher – just couldn’t get away from that woman.). As we were preparing to understand the rise and fall of economical cycles – or was it fractions – Danielle knocked Meagan’s pencil box over. It crashed to the floor and the contents scattered. I thought (and still do) that Meagan was nice so I bent down to help pick up the stuff. As my hand came down it landed right on a tack. I managed to not scream, but I did rush up to Mrs. W and show her. I was sent to the office to have it removed. (I think I should mention right now that prior to this event I had had 4 tumors, 7 surgeries and was on a weekly blood test schedule where I got poked and forced to bleed my own blood every week. I’m not diabetic but that would have been an easier explanation to people)

In the office I was escorted back to see the nurse. She tried to get me to let her pull it out. I refused. I knew it was going to hurt. She brought in others and they tried to convince me it wasn’t going to hurt and that it should just come out. What type of idiot did they take me for? David E had a nail go through his foot earlier in the year and they had to operate and put him in a cast. And that was only a nail. This was a TACK!! There was no way I was letting any one but a trained medical official pull this out and I wanted the helicopter on stand by.

It just happened to be that day was the day the fire department came to inspect the buildings. In walked the same fire fighters that Mrs. W had had us meet on the firehouse tour the previous week. I felt they were qualified enough. So in came the nurse, to hold my hand and I let the firefighters remove the tack. Much to my surprise, it didn’t hurt a bit. However, they decided they needed to make it bleed and that part hurt. I cried.
After a brief pep talk from the firefighters I was sent back to class. During the pep talk they told me that they had the helicopter warming up and it turned out that we just didn’t need it this time.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

mural mural on a wall

Antioch, CA

I felt like taking a picture of a mural today.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

New Mutt

Antioch, CA

I went with Tom tonight to do some work at a customer's place. The customer has a new dog that they got from the pound. Cute little mutt that is a 3 way cross (lab, collie, and something else I can't remember). You can tell it has been abused because any time you call after it it cowers. But it was a fun dog anyway. It's a licker and a kisser (which I don't mind), but the owner is trying to train it out of the dog. A friend today asked me if I was a cat person or a dog person and I can't really say I'm either. I like both as long as they aren't in my bed or in my shower. (I have a dear ex-girlfriend tell me that if we ever got married the GREAT DANE would sleep with us in bed. I don't think dogs belong in my bed or even in my bedroom. It was a sticking point in our relationship.)

of whoppers and runners

Sean eyed the runners as other men eyed power tools or nice cars and big trucks. Instead of oohing and ahhing over torque, attachments or versatility or instead of paying attention to the details in the signature fender or custom interior or even the 72-point surround sound system – Sean watched those people run. Each step coming down just in front of the other; the calf muscles flexing and then relaxing; every inch of fabric in those short shorts and skin tight shirts moving in sync with the body of the runner. While other men listened to the revving engine of the 8 cylinders rotating in order and humming a symphony of metal on metal, Sean listened to them panting, breathing in short quick breathes and yet never to be seeming out of breath.

Sean took another bite of his double Whopper with cheese as he watched the pack of them start to turn the corner. As he squeezed the cheese between his teeth and his molars obliterated any form that beef had to being at one point a living creature, Sean contemplated the diet of a runner – yogurt, berries and granola. Sucking on the straw of his extra large Pepsi, he admired the physique of those rushing by the window: Arms up and half fisted swinging back and forth against those shirts, rotating at the shoulder cuff. Stomachs flat and trimmed, with the breasts of the women runners strapped close to the body. Sean looked down at his physique and noticed a bit of ketchup his belly had caught as it had drooled out of his burger. Using his index finger, he wiped it up and then licked it off his finger.

As his gaze left his belly he found himself watching their shoes. Scientifically designed to be light, airy, aerodynamic and comfortable. Each step coming after that shoe had glided through the air with the most advanced technology moving it along. Each shoe breathing out the sweat, heat, and exhaustion. Every step proving the rise of greatness is in simple leather and laces.

And that’s when it suddenly dawned on Sean. Like all of those men before that have lied to themselves about how one more sub woofer or a new attachment for their less than adequate drill win bring them from the world of admiration to the world of being admired – Sean told himself that he needed new shoes. And he promised himself that after he finished his fries and fresh hand scooped vanilla ice cream shake, if there was time left in the lunch break, he would go to a shoe place. And when he is there he will ask the sales person for the best, top of the line quality running shoe. He promised himself he would slip them on in the store and use them right away – running out to his car. And he promised himself he would run every day and he promised and he promised and he promised. And he spent so much time promising, that he ran out of time and went back to work without the shoes that were going to project him into greatness. Because surely it was in the shoes that that group out the fast food restaurant window that made them who they were. What else could it be?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


“In the mornings as a youth I would get up with Mama and get the day going for the boys and my papa. There would be eggs to gather, hens to let out for the day and cows to milk. I wasn’t supposed to be out milkin ‘til I was 10, but when we lost my brother to the tractor, well then they needed me out milkin’ more that they needed my braided head in the house scurrying under mother’s feet getting the coffee on.

“Truth be told, milkin was my favorite part. It was always cold as I walked from the house to the barn but the barn was warm inside. And milkin for me wasn’t as hard as milking for daddy or grand daddy. Theys told me they had to actually grab the cow and squeeze. Then they had to grab again and squeeze. It sounds awfully disgustin and yucky to me.

“I just have to go into the barn and turn on the sucker. And then I have to run as fast as I can. The better I run, the better it sucks, the more milk we be getting. That’s what papa is always telling me. So I run and I run and I run. Some times my legs would start to hurt and the treadmill would slow down and the sucker would slow its suckin. That hurt the cow pretty awful and it would cry out in loud moo. If papa be near by, he’d rush in and start yelling at me. “Stacy what are you doing?? You better get running girl. We need that milk and you need to get it for us.” Some times he’d threaten to whip my butt and other times he’d threaten to not give me any milk, but either way I was off and goin again.

“When I was 12 papa won another cow in a poker game. He woke me up in the middle of the night and told me to get plenty of rest because in the morning I’d be runnin twice as much. And he was right. First I’d hook up the sucker to our first cow and then to the other. I ran all morning long.

“By the time I made it to high school, I was the fastest girl in school and I was only a freshman. I nice man in town offered to buy my papa a sun powered sucker macheen if papa would keep me in school and let me run. I miss the cows, but I loved having people cheerin for me when I ran. The cows only moaned and never cheered. When I turned 18 last year a big man from the city told my papa that I could make him big money. So now I’m here.”

“That is an amazing story. Thank you for joining us. We have just heard from Stacy Watson, who last night won her first gold medal in the 10K long distance race. This is Sean O’hara reporting. Back to you in the studio.”

Let's go hiking

Antioch, CA

I bought this tonight at Costco - on the off chance I get bored this summer without school, Shell, and customers.

Monday, May 11, 2009


Antioch CA

Minus postage and actually mailing it, I've voted.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Escape from Mother's day

37 49' 07.41" N 122 31' 48.82" W

I escape from Mother's Day by going for a drive today. I ended up just outside a light house my father suggested to me. The light house was closed but I still got a few great shots. I left my memory card at home - so while there was about 1,000 great shots I could have taken - this is just one of three I kept.

(BTC - 1)
(BTC - Kobobs)
(BTC - Der)

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Fresno LDS Temple

Fresno, CA
Post #700: 699 pictures since Day 1.

I wanted to test out my truck this weekend. It hasn't been on a long distance trip since September 2007, since the last time I went up to see Nina. For Memorial weekend, I'm going up to see her again and I wanted to see if the truck was ready. It performed fine.
I drove to Fresno today to also get some more pictures of the Fresno Temple. I run a temple picture blog along with some friends. I'm constantly looking for more Temple pictures to add to the blog. If you live near a temple or have digital images you want to share - please contact me.

(BTC - Sunsets at 70 MPH)
(BTC - For Shell)
I was inspired by Josh for today's picture.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Boldly going where no man has gone before

Vallejo, CA

I saw Star Trek with Robin and Amy tonight and thought it was way better than Wolverine I saw last week.

the day the crawdads were banned.

I think for the next 4 months I’m going to have two days you can look forward to on Teaching Sean. Tuesdays I think will be story day and Fridays will be the day I add to my memoirs. Today is Friday.
When I was in the 6th grade I was part of a club called the Stormin’ Mormons. There were five of us n the group: Ryan, David (Ryan’s little brother), Ben, Matt and I. I have no clue where any of these people are today, but during the summers of 5th and 6th we were inseparable. We were often found on Blacow Elementary’s campus chasing each other and play a form of cops and robbers. Occasionally our mother would let us go on a bike ride to Lake Elizabeth. (about 2 miles away) With us we would take poles, string, and hot dogs.

Just past Lake Elizabeth are two sets of train tracks. Both tracks have bridges that go over a creek. (Though looking at google maps today – one bridge seems to be missing.) Under those bridges was prime crawdad land. Four of us would fish while one guy got to be look out. The look out was usually there to watch for coming trains. If we were smart we would get out from under the train, but actually what we were waiting for was to run up and put pennies on the tracks. I say if we were smart because if you have ever been under a bridge when a train rolls over 5 feet above your head it is the loudest thing you will ever experience. It is an all-consuming roar.

One day we decided that instead of catching and releasing them, we were going to see how many we could catch and we would bring them home to my house. There was a sleepover at my house that night. So as dusk neared we gathered up our haul from the day and biked home. Mom was doing something at the time, so she didn’t see us bring them in. We took them to my room where I had a working fish aquarium. We watched them for a while before Mom called us to dinner. We washed up, went to dinner and generally forgot about them.

The night was spent talking and telling stories and telling jokes. We gathered in the back room and eventually invited sleep to over take us.

The next thing we all experienced was my mother screaming. We awoke to her screaming in the hallway a few rooms over. We scrambled out of our sleeping bags and rushed through the dining room and kitchen to the hallway. In the hallway was my mother, but between her and us was also a 5-inch crawdad snapping its claws at her. Mother did not look happy. Matt grabbed the escapee as the rest of us brushed past my mother and went to my room. Once there we discovered a prison break in the act. The bigger crawdads were stepping on the smaller ones and escaping out of the aquarium.
Mother ordered their immediate departure. So prior to breakfast, the crawdads were gathered up and taken back to the lake. When we returned we were told that we weren’t allowed to have crawdads in the house ever again. And we never did.

Thursday, May 7, 2009


Antioch, CA

I had the 7 year-old on my walk. I learned that if you step on a crack you break your mother's back but if you step on 20 cracks you break your sister's back and he would start with his 13 year-old sister's.


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

A whale of a good time

Oakland, CA

Tonight was a work night on Temple Hill. Harold was running SUPER late, so Stacy and I went to the grocery store to get some food. While we were there we saw this art gallery store. It was closed but inside was hanging this stain glass life size baby humpback whale. It was the weirdest funniest thing. Stacy was in stitches laughing so hard. Go here for a different angle. I'm trying to figure out where I would put this in my house if I ever had the money to buy it.

(If you have a moment - please help me pretend I'm Matt)

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Tree and roses

Antioch, CA

I took Zoe on another walk tonight. I'm hoping to do this often.

(BTC - For John)


“Carton eight eight five seven is now departing. Eight eight five seven is now departing”

Ted settles into his carton and looks over. “Well hello there Bob. How have you been?”

“I have been doing great. What life are you on now days?”

Ted thinks in his head and figures out, “10 I think. How about you?”

“I always lose track; probably the same number. Are you getting better or are you in a slump?” Bob asked.

“I was in a cake yesterday. Prior to that I was a scrambled egg. Did you hear about Fred? He came out of the Mother Ship, but just then a family dog came and scared the Mother Ship and he got stepped on. So far he has been reincarnated as a rotten egg and as an egg with a cracked shell. He is not getting any better in his reincarnations. I feel so bad for the guy.”

“Oh man that is horrible! Did he take up a plea to The Rooster?”

“He did, but The Rooster told him he should have rolled out of the way.”

“Ha Ha. That’s funny. Rolled out of the way. Man that Rooster has the greatest sense of humor. So Federation of Destination is just screwing with him at this point…?”

“Yeah. Fred has one more reincarn before he will go back to making it up the progress ladder. He gets to be a green egg first though.”

“Too Funny!” Ted remarked.

Suddenly there was a shake of the carton, the lid appeared open and a man’s head hovered over. The man checked each one of the 18 passengers before closing the lid and giving the carton the first flight, presuming into the shopping cart. A few moments later more shaking, followed by more before finally hearing the start of an engine and the feel of continued drive.

“With a guy you never can tell.” Ted whispered to Bob. “We could end up as a cake, or scrambled or something else.”

“I hope we aren’t scrambled. That would be a step down the reincarn ladder that’s for sure.”

Suddenly the car stopped, but the engine kept running. Aggressively the carton was grasped and the lid flung open.

“No way! Can it be? We have reached the top rung??”

“This is so exciting!” Ted yelled back. “If it is what I think it is we’ll be in egg heaven in moments.”

“It is. It is. We’re egging a car! We’re going to Heaven Ted! Yippee! Yipp---“ and suddenly Bob was grasped and thrown at a big truck with the license plate saying “Captain Bolton.”

Monday, May 4, 2009

wedding invites

Antioch, CA

Today I got two wedding invites in the mail. I'm not going to either wedding or either wedding reception, but it was nice to be invited.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

barbed sunset

Antioch, CA

I took Zoe on a walk tonight.

(BTC - more from the walk)

drawing in church

When I was 14 or 15 I attended a youth conference. On one evening, we gathered at a ranch near Mission Peak owned by a member of the church. I was smitten with this one particular young lady and when she suggested we go on the hayride, I was suddenly an expert Hay Rider. Hay Rider was my middle name, at that point.

After a rather bumpy ride (there wasn’t actually any hay on the trailer) we came to rest just shy of the crest of a hill. We got out (about 10 of us) and followed the ranch owner to the crest. Up top was this big beautiful tree and a little bench that had been carved out of some previous tree.
The ranch owner had us kneel on the ground and watch as the sun slowly slipped away. As we sat there (I was trying to put my arm around the girl but was still a little shy), the ranch owner said that if us young men served honorable missions we could bring our sweet hearts back to here and picnic on this hill over looking this valley (and the SF bay). As the sun kissed the earth we could turn to our sweet hearts and propose. Often in church I can be seen drawing these pictures. I don’t know how to draw the sun setting so I draw it in the right corner.

Several years ago, Lifesaver Candies had a commercial where a father and daughter sit under a tree and watch the sun set. So occasionally I’ll draw the picture with my son. But if you ever see me in church drawing this (which is really the only thing I draw at church), just smile and know – it’s just me looking forward to a day of picnic and a sunset.

Saturday, May 2, 2009


Antioch, CA

This is Sam. She is the dog next door that makes Zoe look like a cat.

living today

I don't blog as much any more. There are words in my head but I'm not quite sure how to organize them or put them on paper. It's a frustrating process. However, today intrigued me. After going to the dump I returned home and did my chores, did some laundry and puttered around the house. At one point the 7 year-old came in with his playmate and asked his 13 year-old sister to come out and push them on the tire swing. She refused. She was watching a movie and couldn't be disturbed. The playmate pleaded and still there was no action on the 13 year-old's part. Then they approached me and I said it would be my honor. It took ten minutes to satisfy their desires and we were back inside.

My mother died when I was 24. For the last 10 years of her life she struggled with disabilities, illness, and an endless amount of pain. Every few months she would have the energy to leave the house and walk around the block. (On those special days I would carry a chair with us and if she got too tired I would set up the chair and she would sit while I went to go get the car.) As soon as she left a hospital her first request was to just go for a drive. If it was a warm day we would roll down the windows and cruise the streets of Fremont. The days rendering her bound to the house or to a hospital far out numbered the days riding in cars, but it was those days we talked about.

During the past week, my father got into an argument with one of my facebook friends. It wasn't pretty and it really wasn't needed. For the last 24 hours I've exchanged e-mails with my father about how my friends are bad people and how he is right. The whole thing, along with the 13 year-old today, just makes me sick.

On Thursday we got work that another one of my clients had died. That makes three in two weeks. I don't know how old or what was the cause of the first, but the second was 16 and died on an operating table. The one on thursday was 20 and just stopped breathing.

I am not sure how to teach this to others. "Yesterday is the past. Tomorrow is the future. Today is a gift from God. That's why it is called the present." The movie will wait but those ten minutes with your brother giggling with him and his playmate on the swing - those should be cherished. Saving the world from your percieved dangers and causing strife with your son can wait - when moments of love can be cherished.
In the county that I live in 5 schools have been shut down do to the Swine Flu Pandemic. I really doubt we will reach the pandemic stage, but what if we did - did we live today or did we waste the swing opportunities and the car rides on other pursuits? I hope we are living our days.

Friday, May 1, 2009

rain day

Antioch CA

It rained today, which turned my thoughts to the homeless. Just two weeks ago it was 95 degrees outside, which means a lot of the homeless shed their winter coats. There is only so much you can carry in your shopping cart or on your back. So today's brief rain must have been a shock to a lot of them. At 5:30, when I got off work, I drove around for about ten minutes trying to see if there were any homeless that needed a trash bag to protect them from the storm. I didn't find any. I hope they all turned out okay. Between 1/3 and 1/2 of all homeless are veterans of foreign wars. I think it's sad that they go and fight for this country only to come home and not even have a trash bag to keep them dry.