Friday, November 26, 2010


Of the 28 Thanksgivings I've celebrated, this year was the best. First of all, there was no school. I love school, but at the rate we cover material a break every now and then is badly needed (Thanksgiving was the first day-off since Labor Day). Then, I got to go skiing at Alta with dad. The "blizzard" we had on Tuesday was the biggest letdown since the Utah-TCU game but somehow there was still way more snow than I expected. After I got back from skiing I could have called it a day and been perfectly happy--but it got better.

Dinner was so amazing it deserves it's own paragraph. Probably it's own book*, but all I have is a blog. Anyone who knows my mom knows that she loves to throw a party and that, when she does, she pulls out all the stops. This year we didn't have any cousins with us, so she did everything herself. She wrote out a schedule to make sure each dish would be done on time. It started Wednesday night with blanching almonds, putting the turkey in a brine, and doing something in the oven (I'm not really sure what). Then on Thursday, while dad and I were off making tracks in the powder, she and Gracie (my sister) started cooking, making everything from scratch. Stuffing, mashed potatoes, creamed onions (a family favorite--trust me, these things are better than they sound), cranberry sauce, gravy, rolls, and four different kinds of pie (banana cream, chocolate cream, pumpkin chiffon, and pumpkin). The banana cream and chocolate cream pies used homemade pudding with real vanilla (from vanilla beans) and chocolate, respectively. Nothing from a box. What kind of mother does all that for her family? Needless to say, she was exhausted, but it was the best food I've ever eaten. Then Christmas music and Beatles Rockband. I dare you to try and have a better day than that.

*When I was a kid I was into the "Redwall" books. They were about mice and rabbits and stuff that could talk and lived in castles and had medieval battles. I remember reading in one of the books about a feast that took half the novel to describe (at least it felt like half the novel). I don't remember too many details, but I'd be willing to bet our Thanksgiving feast was way more epic.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Harry Potter 7, part I

Before you read this, you should know that I've only read the first Harry Potter book. I know that this means that I don't know everything because they leave stuff out of the movies.

I went to see the first half of the final movie last night. It was good, but I realized what it is about Harry Potter (well, the movies, anyway) that I haven't liked all these years. Harry never does anything in the movies. He either reacts to what happens to him or he follows Hermione and Ron around while stuff falls into their laps. As far as I can remember, in all the movies he never does anything special, smart, brave, or heroic (with the exception of maybe Quidditch, which isn't even that important). He's not really an exceptional wizard, not very coordinated, and he never did anything to earn any sort of reputation at all. And he never has any sort of control of the precarious situations he's always finding himself in. I'm looking for something awesome to happen in the end although I'm starting to suspect that his wand is going to magically wave itself and Voldemort will die.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I had to write a paper this week for class. Knowing that this is my one chance to score higher than the kids who never forget stuff (the gunners) I was actually kind of excited (I even wondered if they'd give me extra credit if I submitted it in English and Spanish). Anyway, I had to write about an article I read on how the brain can make stuff up. The example they give of how this works and why it would be important is if you were watching a dog running behind a picket fence, your brain would fill in the parts of the dog that you can't actually see so that you perceive a complete picture of the dog. It goes on to discuss a girl who feels an itch on her head that is not actually there. It torments her so much that she scratches all the way through her scalp and her skull to her brain.
I got thinking about whether or not my brain does stuff like this and I thought of one example that gets me every time. Now, I'm going to post a picture and I want you to think about what this candy tastes like:

If you're anything like me just looking at these little guys makes you sweat under your eyes, pucker up, and salivate. Not the kind of salivating you do when you see a steak come off the barbecue, but the kind you do when something is so sour that you can't wait to bite into it to get to the sweet core. Can you taste the sourness in your mouth? I really kind of feel like the little guy on the package when I eat one--it makes me wonder why I used to spend money buying these things as a kid. I actually wrote about Warheads in my paper--hopefully my professor will know what I was talking about because, if not, I could be outscored by the gunners one more time.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A sad truth

I heard once that in order to keep people reading a blog, you have to post something at least once a week. While I hope that google reader will save my blog from oblivion, I still feel like I should make an effort to write more. The tragedy is that not much happens to me these days. Week to week there are lectures and tests, with the occasional weekend here and there. As exciting as that is, I feel like a few general observations I've made over the last several weeks might be more interesting to read:

- Anytime before Thanksgiving is way to early to have a Christmas tree.
- Halloween decorations in the front yard are fun but dummies hanging from trees may not be very kid-friendly.
- The Utes are overrated and the Jazz are underrated. (I've been saying this for a while).
- Negativity is contagious. Several of my classmates tend to be negative about school--it kind of wrecks the whole experience.
- 27 is a great age. If you haven't tried it yet, you should.
- I read that retail therapy doesn't really work. This may be true about long term happiness, but if they're talking about short-term life improvement then I beg to differ*.
- Every narcissist has a soft spot. (A story for another time).

Sunday, November 7, 2010

People without kids...

...need nieces and nephews.