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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

My new toy: MyGica CapIt

I've been video editing my son's little league games on an old computer in the garage--the computer has a firewire card that allows me to plug in my camcorder.

For months, I've been searching the web for a product that would convert firewire to usb.  No such luck, until I stumbled across an ad for a MyGica CapIt USB device that allows transfer of video through the AV connection on the camcorder.

On Sunday, I started playing with my new toy by transferring and editing my son's little league tournament game.




Visit my blog at http://photographywritingandmore.blogspot.com/.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

What's in your food?


I've been teased at work for eating healthy. Even my supervisor has challenged me on the snacks I eat just to be surprised that Nature Valley granola bars, my favorite, doesn't contain the articifial preservatives and chemicals found in other snack bars.


I'll be honest, I haven't always been this way. I use to love eating junk food as much as the next person. Perhaps it all changed when I met my wife. Unlike me at the time, she read the nutrition facts label on the side panel and on the back of boxes and cans before purchasing. 

Soon after, I said good-bye to the fast food restaurants and to the high-sodium processed foods floating in artificial preservatives and chemicals.


Thank god I did, though. Back then, I recall experiencing bloating, stomach pains, headaches and hives after eating junk food. I didn't connect the dots until two years ago after eating Chinese buns I purchased at an Asian supermarket that contained high sodium and MSG.

An article I found in Austin Fit Magazine discusses the history and importance of the nutrition facts label that is found on all packaged items. As the article points out, the first three ingredients listed on the label make the bulk of the product, and it's important to heed to the ingredients. 


Girl Scouts Peanut Butter Sandwiches

I use my favorite Girl Scout cookies, the Peanut Butter Sandwiches, as an example. The first three ingredients are enriched flour, sugar, and peanuts.  The other ingredients include oats, vegetable shortening, several corn products and sodium. In addition, three cookies contain 135 mg of sodium and 160 calories.

In the patry, I found a can of Del Monte Sloppy Joe that has been sitting in there untouched for almost a year. I haven't used it because everytime I've wanted to make sloppy joe we don't have ground beef.

The first three ingredients in the sloppy joe include tomato puree, corn syrup and distilled vinegar. It also contains worcestershire sauce, which has more corn syrup, and there's about 440 mg of sodium in a quarter serving of sloppy joe (enough to make a sandwich). Eek! That's a lot of sodium. Perhaps I shouldn't make it after all. 


Del Monte Sloppy Joe Sauce Original

I can't say I'm the most healthiest person or that I eat healthy all the time. I do enjoy a Whataburger or a Wendy's spicy chicken burger once in a while. I do sometimes sneak a Girl Scout cookie after everyone is sound asleep. And in no way do I want to dictate what you should eat and not eat. 

I guess what I would like for you, the reader, to get out of this blog posting is that the nutrition facts label is there for a purpose. It is there to educate the shopper of what is inside the can or box before its purchased and consumed.


Visit my blog at http://photographywritingandmore.blogspot.com/.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

A nice dog story

I came across this touching story reported last Sunday by Sky News about a loyal dog that has stayed near his owners grave since he passed away earlier this month.



Source: http://news.sky.com/home/strange-news/article/16113936

Visit my blog at http://photographywritingandmore.blogspot.com/

Friday, November 25, 2011

Praying my neighbors get pregnant...soon

You're probably confused with the title of this blog entry.  Yes, I pray and recently I have found myself praying that my young neighbor and his girlfriend get pregnant.  What's worse is that I pray not only that they get pregnant but they get pregnant with twins or triplets.

When my wife and I purchased our home, the relationship with the original neighbor was nice.  He would have get togethers, but the parties never went past a decent hour. Sadly, the neighbor and his wife sold thier home and moved to another community.  The buyer, a cousin of another neighbor who lives down the street, was younger than both of us--something we had concerns about.

Around the time of this transition, my wife and I were raising a toddler.  A light sleeper, my wife was often awaken by the partying that could be heard at odd hours of the night. 

As a solution, we muffled the sound with the a/c, heater, or portable fan.  It sometimes worked.

Recently, however, it seems as if the party is getting bigger and louder. Deeper male voices can be heard arguing outside our bedroom window, and the ladies hysterical laugh can wake a deep sleeper like me. 

It's gotten bad to the point that I, a person who hates confrontation, finally resorted to expressing my concerns. I emailed my neighbor after waking up to a lady's loud voice. It was 3 o'clock in the morning on a workday. This was unacceptable since we had work the following day.

My neighbor responded with apology; however, the parties still continue into the early mornings. 

Nothing has really changed.

It would be divine justice if my neighbor and his girlfriend get pregnant with twins or triplets soon... very soon.

Visit my blog at http://photographywritingandmore.blogspot.com/.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Losing is hard

Losing in hardMy seven year old is a very good baseball player.  I don't say that because he is my son, but because I've seen him on the field. 

Like in youth soccer, little league baseball doesn't necessarily keep score.  In other words, everyone wins.  Our son's coach decided to practice that ideology.  To my son, his team won all games.  In reality, they lost a couple of them. 

During the tournament, those rules don't apply. You either advance or not. If you advance, you win. If you don't, you lose.

Try explaining not advancing to a seven year old who has been told he's been winning all season long. 

My son doesn't take losing lightly. Actually, he takes it quite personal. He did, however, hold his anger and frustration until he got inside the car and was buckled-up. After that he let go and cried the way home.

Like every dad caught in this circumstance, I reassured my son that he did great on the field. I used the old cliché that there is no "I" in "TEAM" and that it's a group effort. The team lost. Not just my son.

Indeed, he did good on the field.  There were a couple of errors he made, but he was strong on first base and right-field. He did have two hits and brought in two runners.

Perhaps what confused the team was that they thought they had an extra half-inning. In tournament play, however, the game was limited to 60 minutes, period. So, the team did not have that extra half to catch up and score points. In other words, rather than focusing on scoring hits, the team should have concentrated on defense and prevented plays.

Of course, these are five, six and seven year olds playing little league baseball. How do you reprogram their concept of the game to focus more on defense.

Then again, these are kids.  What we should be instilling in our young players is to play to have fun.

Visit my blog at http://photographywritingandmore.blogspot.com/

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Oh, the back pain

A few years ago, I noticed a nagging pain that ran from the arch of my foot up to my lower back.  This went on for several months until I decided to find the cause. 

I visited my doctor to ask about the pain on my foot arch. I told him that I saw on the Internet that this could be plantar fasciitis.  He disagreed and instead told me that this could be due to my weight. 

At the start of the new year, I decided to change my eating habits and began my weight loss challenge--you can read more about my diet story HERE

Sure enough, the pain that I felt disappeared as soon as I lost my weight. 

I came across an article in my wife's Redbook discussing four reasons for the back pain. Although the article focuses on women, I thought perhaps the reasons listed below could help men as well.

1. Shoes with soles that don't absorb shock.
2. For parents, lifting kids incorrectly.  I'd also include weight gain.
3. Stretching your spine while on the cell phone.  I'd also include your sleep position and how you rest your head on your pillow.
4. Sitting for long periods of time can have an effect on your back.  I blogged about my experience HERE.

You can read the complete article HERE.

Source: "4 sneaky reasons your back hurts," Jessica Girdwain. Redbook. November 2011, Pg. 75.

Visit my blog at http://photographywritingandmore.blogspot.com/.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

1 Run 2 RBIs

Last Saturday was my son's last game for the fall season. Although the team didn't do so great, my son did manage to score a run and brought in two runners. During the final inning, he got a runner out on first.



Visit my blog at http://photographywritingandmore.blogspot.com/.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A review of Les Miserables

I came across this college paper I wrote back in 1999 on Les Miserables.

Please contact me for citation information and to obtain permission.

Welcome to the Movies, Victor Hugo

A cherished classic novel of one’s redemption and a nation’s revolution comes to HBO. Victor Hugo’s classical novel “Les Miserables,” is about a convict who changes his life due to the single act of mercy by a bishop, but faces difficulty doing so because of an ambitious policeman.

Bille August, the director of the new movie, includes two international acclaimed actors: Liam Neeson, who got an Oscar nomination for Steven Spielberg’s “Schindler’s List,” and Geoffrey Rush, who won an Oscar for Scott Hick’s “Shine.” Both actors interpret the characters Jean Valjean and Inspector Javert with splender.

For fifteen years, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, under the direction of David Charles Abell, has been performing Hugo’s classic as a musical at the Palace Theatre in London—located at the very heart of London’s West End theatre-land. The Hugo musical by Alan Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg—who are also known for writing the musical Miss Siagon and Martin Guerre—continue to receive praise from international critics. On October 8, 1995, Cameron Mackintosh produced Les Miserables on their 10th Anniversary performance.

As a musical, Hugo’s novel comes to life with passion and rage. As the characters sing with every emotion, it captivates the audience attention and causes them to empathize with Hugo’s characters. When Javert, playe by Philip Quast, captures Valjean, played by Colm Wilkinson, while rescuing Marius—a young rebel who is in love with Cosette—shouts, “Down! Javert! He’s standing in his graaave! Give way! Javert! There is a life to save!” The audience can feel the dramatic pled for human mercy from Valjean.

The musical could not have such an impact without the orchestral score by John Cameron and the direction by David Charles Abell. With every cry the actors made, a sound by the woodwinds could be heard. When Valjean is caught with a difficult decision of whether-or-not to let a man take the blame for his crime and then decides to confess, the mixture of woodwinds and brass instruments rapid playing indicates the confusion Valjean feels. With the lyrics, “My soul belongs to God, I know I amide a bargain long ago. He gave me hope when hope was gone. He gave me strength to journey on Who am I? Who am I? I’m Jean Valjean,” the orchestra hits a climatic point and fades easily to silent as his last line is, “Who am I? 24601!”

The musical is not only sad and gloomy, but there is a moment where Boublil and Schönberg brings light comedy to the tragedy by introducing Thénardier is an innkeeper who Fantine entrusts her daughter Cosette to, while Fantine finds way to earn money. From a sorrowful feeling in the first few chapters of Act I, the audience switches to a gleeful feeling with the comical Thénardier chorus, “Master of the house. Quick to catch your eye. Never wants a passer-by to pass him by. Servant to the poor. Butler to the great. Comforter, philosopher, and life-long mate. Everybody’s boon companion, Give’s em everything he’s got. Dirty bunch of geezers. Jesus! What a sorry little lot!”

In an attempt to capture Valjean, Javert is taken prisoner by Marius, who had gone to meet Cosette. After a little orphan is shot by French troops, the rebels choose to kill Javert, but Valjean convinces them to let him shoo Javert in the alley.  With stubbornness and loyalty to the law, even after Valjean frees Javert, he promises Valjean, “If you let me go, beware, you’ll still answer to Javert!” With convincing portrayal of a man frustrated and tired of hiding, Colm shouts to Javert, “You are wrong, and always have been wrong. I’m a man, no worse than any many. You are free, and there are no conditions, No bargains or petitions. There’s nothing that I blame you for. You’ve done your duty, nothing more.”

After 17 years of trying to capture Valjean, Javert questions his fate after Valjean spares his life. While Valjean accompanies the troops escorting the injured Marius to his house, Javert sits alone at the Pont Notre Dame over the Seine River to think of the proper punishment for his rival. At first Javert says, “What sort of devil is he (Valjean) to have me caught in a trap and choose to let me go free,” then contradicts himself by saying, “This desperate man whom I have hunted he gave me my life. He gave me freedom.” Philip Quast faces a difficult part to interpret, because Javert has somewhat contradicted himself. As he makes his character show some grown respect for Valjean, the voice changes to self-hatred, because for the first time in his career he is going to disobey the law as he jumps off the Pont Notre Dame.
Please contact me for citation information and to obtain permission.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

A Report on Uses and Gratifications of Media

Undergraduate Paper
Communications 4327
10 December 1997

Please contact me for citation information and to obtain permission.

A Report on
Uses and Gratifications of Media

Introduction

For many years media has been used in different ways in the United States and the world.  One of the ways that people have sought to understand the way people have used media is through the uses and gratifications approach.  This approach provides a better understanding of the functions of mass media to different audiences.  In this report, I will try to review what media does to people and what do people get from media.  The report will also provide information on why people use different kinds of media.

The uses and gratifications approach grew from the concern that the study of mass communication as persuasion was dying (Katz, 1959).  Katz indicated that perhaps the field of communication research could be saved by investigating what the media does to people and the reasons why media is used by people.  Several studies have investigated why people use media.  Although these studies are based on why people use different types of media like newspapers, radio, television, etc., they do provide us with a way to better understand the reasons why people read newspapers or listen to the radio.

In newspapers, one of the studies shows that people read to learn about world affairs, or for escape, relaxation, entertainment and social prestige.  Still, others read the newspaper to find information on fashion, recipes, and weather forecasts (Berelson, 1965).  I was surprised to find that the survey did not show that people read the newspaper to keep up with sports.  In a personal interview with a former editor of The Monitor, Mr. King indicated to me that the majority of the people buy the newspaper to keep up with sports. Another study showed that children read adventure stories to fantasize or daydream (Riley, 1951).

With respect to radio and TV, one of the studies shows that people listen or watch soap operas for escape or emotional release of personal problems (Herzog, 1944).  In the Rio Grande Valley, soap operas and novelas in Mexican television are very popular among Mexican Americans and university students.  I personally agree that soap operas and Mexican telenovelas serve as an emotional release of our personal problems.  With respect to elections, another study showed that people in England watch political broadcasts as a source of information about political affairs.

Uses and Gratifications Models

One of the difficult problems in studying uses and gratification of media is the classification of audience needs and gratifications.  Some researchers have classified audience needs and gratifications in terms of "immediate" or "deferred" gratifications (Schramm, Lyle & Parker, 1961).  In other words, these people say that we watch a program on TV or read the newspaper, we either get immediate gratification or from watching it or deferred gratification at a later time.  Another researcher identifies the uses and gratification in terms of information or educational or fatasist or escapist (Weiss, 1971).  This model is probably more applicable to different types of media.  For example, people watch the news or the Discovery Channel for educational or informational purposes.  On the other hand, people may watch soap operas to escape from our daily problems but children may watch Barney or Star Trek to fantasize.

Swedish researchers identified uses and gratifications of media into three different elements.  The first element was whether the audience was conceived of as active.  In other words, did the audience play an important role to the mass media's goal.  The second element was the mass communication process much initiative in linking need gratification and media choice lies with the audience member.  The final element was th emedia compete with other sources of need satifactions (Katz, 1973).

This model asks that we think of media exposure as an intervening variable in the study of traditional communication effects research.  According to Katz, Blumler and Gurevitch, audiences differ in the gratifications they are seeking from the mass media.  The reasons might be related to certain social conditions and functions or personality dispositions and abilities.

Rubin and Perse applied this uses and gratifications model to the television viewing needs and motives among children and adolescents.  In 1981, Rubin found that motivations do determine television use.  He found that viewers who are seeking companionship or infomration tend to watch the most television.  More recent research shows that the uses and gratifications approach is useful in predicting MTV, magazine, and telephone use (Vincent, 1997).

Another uses and gratifications model was developed by McQuail, Blumler and Brown in 1972.  It suggests that diversion played an important role to an audience.  In other words, people sought an escape from reality through the media.  They also suggested that personal relationships dictated why people used the media.  These researchers found that people use the media to gain information to use during a conversation.  They also found that the audience seek companionship with the use of media.  Personal identity or individual psychology is also seen to play an important role in the attention the audience gives the media.  It was seen that the media gave value reinforcement or reassurance to media users.  In some cases, individual psychology helped audience find a self-understanding.  Surveillance also was seen to effect the audience.  It was seen as information about things which might affect one or will help one do or accomplish something (McQuail, 1972).

Mark R. Levy in 1975 used the McQuail, Blumler and Brown model to study a sample of 240 adults.  His research concluded that television news test viewers preceptions and attitudes on "fresh" events and personalities.  According to Levy, many viewers "actively" choose between competing newscasts.  In effect, viewers arrange their schedules to be near a television set at news time and pay close attention to program (Levy, 1975).

A year later, Katz, Gurevitch and Haas saw that individuals used the mass media to disconnect or connect themselves from others.  They listed 35 needs and placed them into five categories.  One of those categories was the need to acquire information, knowledge and understanding, wich is known as cognitive.  An affective need was also categorized as the audience using the media for emotional, pleasurable or aesthetic experience.  The audience also use the media to strengthen their credibility, confidence, stability and status; this category is known as a social integrative need.  The final category stated that the audience used the media as an escape and diversion from reality.  It was seen as a tension release.

With this category, the researchers interviewed 1,500 respondents in Isreal.  After researching their needs and satisfactions, they reached several conclusions.  One was that the non media source was found more gratifying with friends, holidays and work.  Second was the greater the "distance" from a referent -- social, physical or psychological -- the more important the role of the media.  Thirdly, certain comparative processes, such as lifestyles, seemed well served by the media.  Friends were seen as more important than the mass media for needs having to do with self-integration.  The fourth conclusion was that the media usefulness in serving these needs is entirely consistent, regardless of the respondent's education level.  Finally, the needs having to do with self are associated with different kinds of media.  This includes: knowing oneself through books; enjoying oneself in associated with film, television and books; while the newspaper contributes to self-regulation and self-confidence (Katz, 1973).

Some recent uses and gratifications models were made by Perse and Courtright (1993) and Meng Weng Wong.  Perse and Courtright identifies 11 needs that can be satisfied by communications.  Those 11 needs include: the need to relax, to be entertained, to forget about work, to have something to do with friends, to learn things about oneself and others, to pass the time away, to feel excited, to feel less lonely, to satisfy a habit, to let others know I care about their feelings, to get someone to do something for me (Severin and Tankard, 1997).

Meng Weng Wong, an independent researcher, divided his uses and gratifications model into four categories: cognition, diversion, social utility, and withdrawal.  He defined cognition as being the act of coming to know something.  For example, a person can use the media to keep up with information on current events.  The second category is diversion.  Diversion is separated into three subcategories: stimulation, relaxation, and emptional release. According to Wong, people seek stimulation in order to avoid boredom.  Some seek relaxation to escape from life.  Others find watchign hoor movies as emotional release.  The third category dealt with social utility.  According to Wong, some people use social utility to talk about events stemming from shared experience through the media, and Wong categorizes the act people do when they want to avoid interaction as being withdrawal.

All these different models gives us a good understanding of what uses and gratifications actually mean.  Uses and gratifications studies audience use of mass media according to social and psychological needs.  Though it is research, there are many criticism towards the use of uses and gratifications.

Uses and Gratifications Experiments

In 1984, Bryant and Zillmann conducted an experimental study of whether an individual's mood influences the selection of television programs.  These researchers investigated the selection students made when they were either stressed out or bored.  The students had to select between exciting and relaxing television programming.  The researchers concluded that students who were bored viewed more exciting rather than relaxing movies.  The stressed out students also watched exciting movies but didn't mind watching relaxing movies.

Stone and Stone carried out a telephone survey in 1990, in which people indicated their reasons for watching evening television soap operas by agreein with eight statements. The result showed the respondents watched evening television soap operas due to habit (Severin and Tankard, 1997).

O'Keefe and Spetnagel in 1973 found that among college students, males viewed more television and read more newspapers than females.  According to the study, television viewing levels increased with age.  Television was the preferred source for news of a national or international event with newspapers being second; newspapers socred highest as a source for detailed information (Vincent, 1997).

Other interesting experiments dealt with the recent development of technologies.  Heeter and Greenberg gave viewers a variety fo scanning strategies to decide which programs to watch.  They concluded that young adults were the most active viewers of cable television who tend to use controlled, elaborated, and exhaustive searchign strategies.  Talk about channel surfing.

Perse and Dunn conducted a survey to research what use the people have for the Internet.  They found that people use the Internet to learn, to be entertained, social interaction, escapism, pass time, and out of habit.  The authors believe that the use of computer connectivity might actually lead to addictiveness.

To make this paper fun, I did a survey of communication majors on the amount of time they watch television.  What I found was that 40 percent of the students watch less than five hours of television.  Only 10 percent of the students watch 11-20 hours of news worthy television, while 30 percent watch 5-10 hours or entertainment television.  What I found is that the communication students watch more news worthy television than entertainment television.

Criticism

There are three different types of criticism. The first criticism other researchers have is that uses and gratifications is non-theoretical.  In a 1983 critique found operational definitions and analytical models confusing.  Plus, critics found that uses and gratifications model to offer a lack of theoretical justification, and critics say "the discussion ranges far from the result, which does not support their theoretical underpinnings (Stanford, 1983)." 

Many critics see the use of uses and gratifications as being vague in defining key concepts.  Critics say that uses and gratifications focuses too narrowly on the individual.  It relies on psychological concepts such as needs, and neglects social structure and media.  An answer to that criticism was made by Rubin and Windahl.  They proposed a synthesis of uses and gratifications approach and dependency theory.  Their "uses and dependency model" places individuals within societal system, which help share their needs.

Critics also call the model being nothing more than a data-collecting strategy.  Critics suggest that much use of mass communication might involve a low level of attention.  They believe that many might not be interested in surveillance or personal guidance as much as they are interested in some mildly pleasant stimulation (Severin and Tankard, 1997). 

Some critics believe that individuals needs was created by the media.  Others say that uses and gratifications goes to far in claiming that people choose to see what they want and interpret the way they want.  They believe that mass media messages tends to reinforce the dominant world view of the culture. 

Conclusion

In conclusion, people use the media for different types of reasons.  Some see it as a way to escape from reality, while others use media for educational purposes.  Canary and Spitzberg found evidence that the audience use the media to escape loneliness.  A way to prove that is watch who is viewing QVC at 3:00 in the morning. 

The uses of the media and the gratifications they get out of it has been studied for the past 40 years.  Researchers main concern on their studies is what we do with the media and how we use it.  Even though uses and gratifications is seen as non-theoretical, they still serve a purpose of informing us of why others use the media. It even gives us an update on trends the audience have on the media.  I believe that uses and gratifications effects they way businesses and advertising agencies work.  These tests can give an idea of waht the audience want.

References

Berelson, B (1965). What missing the newspaper" means. In W. Schramm (ed.), Process and The Effects of Mass Communication., pp.. 36-47. Urbana: University of Illinois.

Katz, E., M. Gurevitch, H. Hass, "On the Use of the Mass Media for Important Things. American Sociological Review 38 (1973): 164-181.

Levy, M.R. (1980). Home video recorders: A user survey. Journal of Communications 30 (no. 4): 23-25.

McQuail, D., J.G. Blumber, and J.R. Brown (1972).  The television audience: A revised 28.8,9 (1994): 52:75.

Severin, Werner J., James W. Tankard, Jr. Communication Theories: Origins, Methods, and Uses in the Mass Media. New York: Longman, 1997.

Standford, S.W. (1983). Comments on Palmgreen and Rayburn, "Gratifications sought and media exposure." Communication Research 10; 247-258.

Thomsen, Steven R. "at work in cyberspace": Exploring practitioner use of the PREForum.  Public Relations Review 22.2 (1996): 115-131.

Vicent, Richard C., and Michael D. Basil. "College students' new gratifications, media use, and current event knowledge." Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media 41.3 (1997): 380-392.

Wong, Meng Weng. "Audience's Use of Mass Media." Nov. 1993: http://www.seas.upenn.edu/~mengwong/comm125.audience.html.

Please contact me for citation information and to obtain permission.


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Friday, November 11, 2011

Meeting Julio and Tenoch

Y Tu Mama Tambien is a 2001 Mexican film about two boys who fall in love with an older lady and set out on a road trip. The critically acclaimed film received many recognitions for its portrayal of two Mexican teenage boys, Julio and Tenoch.

The reason why I bring up this movie is because I recently met Julio and Tenoch. No, not the actors but rather two boys in thier teens who act very much like the teenagers in the movie. The sad thing is that these boys were traveling not with an older woman but a 60 year old man--my dad. 

Although retired, my father still teaches economics at the local university.  He's always had a connection with his students; many have stayed in contact with my dad years later. Granted, he is a mentor.

So, these boys I met are from Mexico who are attending a public university in the states.  One is from Torreon and the other from Monterrey.  Although both are nice and noble young men, listening to both conversing is like watching a dialogue exchange between Julio and Tenoch--every other word was accompanied with some sexual reference and inappropriate adult language. I was waiting for Maribel Verdu, the lady who played the older woman in Y Tu Mama Tambien, to walk in and capture the two's attention.

For as long as I can remember, my dad would introduce my mother and I to new characters that were his students. 

There was this female student who sang with me The Pointer Sisters' I'm So Excited during my dad's re-election campaign.  She had crazy hair, loud and always hyper.  I'm not sure what happened to her.

There were several other students who I terrorized during the years.  I would shoot spit-balls and water guns at many of them when they came over.  One of them I managed to shatter his sister's car windshield, accidently. 

These are just a few I can recall.

I guess the thing that troubles me is that my dad is in his sixties and running around with kids two generations his junior--in a sense, I can be these kids' father. Or perhaps I'm a bit jealous watching my father continue to grab the admiration and respect from his students.

Visit my blog at http://photographywritingandmore.blogspot.com/.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

2 Runs 2 RBIs

My seven year old had a good game this past Saturday.  He scored 2 runs and 2 RBIs.  While playing 2nd base, he tagged out three runners--the other team had a scoreless inning. 

You'll notice in the video below that I didn't catch the first tag out.  I guess I should just let the video recorder run throughout the game.

Excuse the audio delay.



Visit my blog at http://photographywritingandmore.blogspot.com/.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Man Rule #1022

Never wear boxers and shorts to a park where fire ants are plentiful.  Ants don't discriminate and thier bits are more painful.

Visit my blog at http://photographywritingandmore.blogspot.com/

Saturday, November 5, 2011

A WTF Huh? moment in the men's room

Us guys know there is an etiquette when it comes to the men's restroom; for example, the selection of a urinal is critical and making eye contact or talking is usually discouraged.  This blog entry is about the latter.

After having lunch, a coworker--who is also a good friend of mine outside of work--and I found ourselves in the men's restroom; he had, however, arrived in there before I did.  When I walked into the restroom, I saw him at the third urinal while another coworker was at the urinal closest to the exit. 

Men rules state that if this happens you should select a stall or wait in order to avoid the dilemma.  I was the renegade and chose the urinal at the end of the restroom next to my friend; besides, we just had lunch together and thought this man rule, due to prior precedent, was voided between us.  Not so.

"We're making pizza tonight...," I said.  Yes, it's a strange statement to make in the men's restroom, but we're friends, right?  Well, I should have gotten the hint after awkward silence.  To fill the void, I continued, "And it's with all natural ingredients." 

No response. 

I thought he'd definitely have something to say about us using "natural ingredients."  Not so.  The only response I got was from the guy at the first urinal who was confused as to whom I was talking to, "huh?"

My friend of over seven years walked away from the urinal, washed his hands, and exited the restroom without saying a word. 

WTFudge!

Visit my blog at http://photographywritingandmore.blogspot.com/.