Friday, November 30, 2012

Watching Star Trek: TNG with my son

It's no secret, I am a Trekker. I have proof, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, and HERE, oh and HERE, and HERE. It's the last "HERE," where I totally geeked out.

Last night, selected theaters showed two episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation Season Two. Needlesstosay, I was excited and planned my night a week in advance.

I texted my wife to remind her of the showing as I was driving home from the gym. At some point between the gym and our home, I thought about asking my eight year old son to join me to the showing.  I wanted him to go with me, but I feared he'd decline and opt for watching Disney or Discovery Channel.

Nope, he agreed to go with me to the movies. I was excited and eager to get there. We purchased a bag of popcorn and made our way to the theater house. After noticing other Trekkers walking behind us, I said to my son, "Let's beat the geeks and get good seats."

I worried that my son would quickly get bored with the episodes and our time at the movie would be short. It didn't turn out that way. We watched both Q Who? and The Measure of a Man. Between those two episodes, they showed an intro, cast interview and bloopers.

After noticing my son growing tired, I reached over and whispered to him, "We can leave after the cast interview. We don't need to watch the last episode." He shook his head and we stayed until the very end of The Measure of a Man.

That's my boy.

I've had many happy moments with my son. This is one that I can add to my list of favorite moments.


Thursday, November 29, 2012

"Love Versus In Love"

This is probably the best time to bring up infatuation vs. being in love. I say that because we've heard of men breaking up before the holidays to either save money or avoid any steps to commitment--e.g. meeting the family. I think I might have done that to a girl in college.

So, what is being in love? We can't just go with Ron Burgundy's take on love.

I found an article in the November issue of Austin Woman that discusses the difference between being in love with a person and just loving the person.

The article, which is written by Eric Leech, lists nine differences of infatuation versus being in love, and concludes that "True love should be selective, connected and enduring."

Below I've listed the nine differences along with my thoughts (in red).

1. "Your best" - Leech explains that when a person is in love "the relationship should bring out the best of both" people; whereas when a person loves, it's not entirely genuine and only done to keep the other person around. I've done that. Other guys have done this, and I would be surprised if women weren't guilty of this too. When a couple is in love, both encourage each other to be the best in life.

2. "Happiness" - Leech states that when a person is in love, that person"will be happy when he [or she] makes you happy." This is probably true. Relationships works both ways. If happiness only benefits one person in the relationship, then it's probably an infactuation.

3. "Selflessness" - A person is in love when that person "seeks to understand with compassion..." and will find ways to make life better, while a person who loves expects things in return after doing something nice. I'm guilty of this and should improve in this department. Men need to listen more and not just rush to purchase the most expensive thing to receive something in return.

4. "Planning" - Leech explains that when a person is in love, that person will plan the weekends around the other person's schedule. When my wife and I were dating, our time together were spent around her schedule.

5. "Joy" - Leech quotes American psychiatrist Dr. George E. Vaillant, "The secret to life is finding joy, not happiness... Happiness is drive reduction. Joy is connection." In other words, sex gets old. The key is compatibility.

6. "Future" - When a person is in love, ther person "will see a future" with the other person; while a person who only loves does not "necessarily influence a man [or woman] to think ahead." One word: commitment. If the person is not willing to commit long term, then perhaps the person is not in love.

7. "Vulnerability" - "Being in love is when a guy [or gal] allows...fears and vulnerabilities to bring the two of you closer." I encountered this when my wife and I were getting serious in our relationship. I was extremely scared with everything I was inheriting and bringing into our relationship. Regardless, I knew I loved her and wanted to be with her despite any challenge. It's been that way since.

8. "Attachment" - Leech states that "Men [or women] in love will become attached to their relationship, whereas love itself is more of an addiction." An old girlfriend of mine was extremely possessive to the point where she would drive down my street checking to make sure I was at home. Being with her was great, but I knew that we weren't in love with each other and that it was all an infatuation. Soon after, I called it off. Yes, this is the same girl I dumped before the holidays.

9. "Pairing" - "Pairing up as a couple in love is about sharing intimacies with each other." Love shouldn't be of convenience. 

In other words, there's more to love than just afternoon delights. It's about bringing the best out of the you love without expectations and enjoying each other's time together.

You can read the complete article HERE.

Men's Health has The Bacon Test. See if you are in love or infatuated HERE.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

What do men find sexy about women?

To help me gather ideas for blog entries, I began following people and magazines on Twitter. I was overwhelmed with ideas the first day. One being of things men find sexy about women.

Last year, matchmaker expert Paul Carrick Brunson listed 13 things men found sexy about women. He gathered his data from over 1,000 male clients and twitter followers. His findings is that "sometimes it's answered with purley physical characteristics while others respond with personality traits," and while women have "a wide variation in what they considered sexy, fellas are narrower with their thoughts." From personal experience, I think that's pretty accurate.

When I was dating, physical features were top of my list. For example, I dated a girl I met over Yahoo Personals. Throughout the meal, I couldn't get past her huge big large oversized "regrettably large" head. She also had a strange smell I couldn't make out. Needlesstosay, the date ended and that was that. Shallow. Yup. Do I feel guilty about it. Nope.

Trust me, there were many women who I dated that didn't want a call. One actually told me not to call her again; of course, that was after I left several messages one after the other trying to correct the previous message. To this day I can't watch Swingers without cringing.

I've listed a few of Brunson's findings below with my comments in red.
  • Men find fit legs attractive. This reminds me of an episode in Just the Ten of Us, where a young Matthew Perry is asked by an over-protective dad, while serving fried chicken, if he'd like "breast or leg." Matthew answers "wing." I have to admit, ever since I began noticing girls, I've liked legs. So, I can understand that this physical characteristic is preferred by most men.
  • High heels. Women look great in high heels, and us guys do notice the shoes. And if a guy complements your high heels, more than likely he's noticing your legs.
  • A woman's scent. Perfumes are great, but I prefer the natural scent. What exactly is it about the natural scent? It tells a lot about a woman and her diet. Women whose diet is primarily meat will have an unpleasant odor.
  • Confidence.  When I met my wife, her confidence was the first thing I noticed. Okay, I lie. It was her shoulders that first caught me, then her eyes, then her smile, and then her confidence. Even today, I am drawn by her confidence.
  • An exposed back. For me, this is absolutely true, and I blame Henri Mattise's La Coiffeur for this. There is something about an exposed back that is extremely sexy. And call me weird, but I like when a woman's back has a few freckles.  
  • Hips wider than waist. Yes, yes, yes. A natural curve is extremely sexy.
You can get the complete list HERE.

I thought I'd end with this clip from Scent of a Woman, and let Lt. Col. Frank Slade tell us what he likes in women. (Contains Explicit Language)

Sources:;; in Wonderland (2010)

Monday, November 19, 2012

Confessions of a Gym Dweeb - Food Cravings


I spend about 45 minutes at the gym, now. After working out, I usually drink a small glass of coconut water; then, a few minutes later, I enjoy a light beer.

My wife normally prepares a great healthy meal, but sometimes I find myself searching around the pantry for something salty or sweet after dinner.

Yes, it defeats the whole purpose of visiting the gym, right? Not necessarily. It's all about moderation and what is being consumed.

Firstly, I don't reach for anything that has MSG or anything that contains too many by-products. Peanuts, sunflower seeds, and bread with honey are usually my choice in snacks.

Recently, I came across an article by Austin fitness expert, Tim Valderrama, that discussed the difference between physical hunger and emotional hunger. Natually, physical hunger is when a person feels lightheaded and week. Emotional hunger, as Valderrama explains, is when "eaters will not wait for their bodies to get hungry or allow their stomachs to process the signal for hunger."

I'm sometimes an emotional eater.

Interestingly, he cites research where Drs. Michael Roizen and Mehmet Oz connected the type of food cravings to moods (see below). In other words, there's a reason why I scavenge for snacks.


  • tough foods, like meat, or hard and crunchy foods, you could be feeling angry.
  • sugars, you could be feeling depressed.
  • soft and sweet foods, like ice cream, you could be feeling anxious.
  • salty foods, you could be stressed.
  • bulky, fill-you-up foods, like crackers and pasta, you could be feeling lonely and sexually frustrated.
  • anything and everything, you could be feeling jealous.

  • So, according to this research, I am anxious and stressed and sexually frustrated. That's almost accurate.

    Accepting the problem exists is the first step to control emotional eating, and Valderrama lists eight tips to control this, which I've listed some below along with my comments in red.

    • "Try to relax through yoga or walking outdoors." - Taking a stroll around the neighborhood instead of snacking in front of the TV does have health benefits--emotionally and physically. Going to the gym also helps refocus your emotions.
    • "Do any activities that bring you happiness and pleasure." - Find a hobby that will distract you from snacking, such as blogging--wink wink.
    • "When you get the urge to eat when you're not hungry, find a comfort food that's healthy instead of junk food." - This is one we practice at our home. You won't find Fritos or Cheetos in the pantry. We usually have granola bars, nuts, and honey. Opt for fruits too.

    You can read the complete article HERE.



    Thursday, November 15, 2012

    "Can you let me in?"

    Internet Find

    Tuesday, November 6, 2012

    Perry's Eyes

    Perry the Platypus's Eyes

    This photo was taken on October 6, 2012 using an HTC PH44100.

    Thursday, November 1, 2012

    Voting "La Palanca"

    I've been around elections since I was very little. My dad was in politics and eventually became an elected board member of a school district. After his tenure, he continued to support friends who ran for other offices either in the local, state or federal level. We walked streets, knocked on doors, and asked people to vote.

    My dad instilled in me the importance of being involved in the community and having a voice through the voting process. I remember going with him to vote at my school, which was a polling location, entering a booth and having the curtains close behind us. Each candidate had a lever. At the very top were levers for parties, which allowed voters to vote straight party or as I grew up knowing it as "la palanca."

    Lever machines were phased out and replaced with optical scan, which is similar to bubbling in Scantron sheet. Then after the "hanging chad" incident, Congress passed the Help America Vote Act of 2002, which introduced America to electronic voting machines.

    Although voting "la palanca" is a phrase from the past, the idea of voting straight party is still practice.

    Check out this article from American City and County, which provides a retrospect of the lever machine and how it was once promoted as "tally-fraud-proof."