Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Failed Older Young Single Adults -- better known as FOYSA.

The name Eric gave to himself and other ward members 27 and older. A group I won't qualify for for another four years. And a group with the most amazing church acronymn ever.

Less than a week to go

In less than 7 days the polls will be closed and unless Florida manages to mess up the digital transfer of votes via electronic polling machines, we should know who the new president will be. Mass hysteria has broken out in both parties. Take the "crazy McCain rally" lady SNL so brilliantly parodied or a segment on Jon Stewart showing Obama supporters who are just as irrational. Voters are ready to take to the nuclear bomb shelters their grandparents built if the other candidate takes office.

Really? Taxes may rise or fall, the war in Iraq may be prolonged or shortened and we will see the first African American or the first woman in the White House. But the world won't end. And the country certainly won't self-destruct. How about a little hope America? These kids seem to have the right idea:

Monday, October 27, 2008

Cheering Logan ...

Junior High cheerleaders are oblivious. Four inches from the front bleacher, they were cheering their hearts out regardless of the play. From the beginning whistle to the final throw, they never stopped yelling. I don't even think they turned around.


The receiver fumbles the ball.


The opposite team snatches the ball off the ground and makes a break for the end zone.


Parents are craning their necks and rising out of their seats trying to see around the girls with the pom-poms.


He's getting closer and closer to the end zone. The crowd is going crazy. The opposite side of the field is screaming encouragement, the home side in shock. No one is watching the girls with big smiles on their faces.


The ball flies into the guest's end zone in the arms of a young player and parents groan. The other team's fan base is ecstatic.


Seriously. Oblivious.

In the meantime, Logan Coombs was having the game of his life.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Side note ...

Notice posted on side of school bus:
"Entering a school bus with the intent of criminal activity is a crime."

Local diner marquee:
"Banquit room now available."

and finally ...

Marquee on 1900 West for Impact Guns:
"Relieve those pre-election jitters with an AR-22."

Because when faced with the possiblity of a Democratic president, nothing says solace like .22 caliber rifle.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Shoe love ...

“Before you criticize a man, walk a mile in his shoes. That way, when you criticize him, you'll be a mile away and you'll have his shoes." -- Jack Handy
It snowed last weekend. A couple hours into the day and four inches deep in snow, my toes were painfully aware of the shortage of shoes in my closet. Matching the only thing water, snow or ice proof in my closet with anything work appropriate would have been the equivalent of matching bowling shoes with no socks and a Hawaiian shirt. So I was left with open-toed sandals and frost-bitten toes.

I got off work earlier than expected tonight and decided to buy something warm, practical and work appropriate. Last weekend's TV time with "What Not to Wear" has ruined me. The Mary Jane's suddenly seemed very plain. I was drawn to bright colors, sexy heels and shoes with oddly shaped toes. There were shoes with bows, patterns and textures. A world I was blind to was now in my sight and I began pulling shoes off the rack at an alarming pace. I approached the counter with a pair of burgundy shoes with texture, ruffle and bling. I was thrilled. My first grown-up shoe purchase. They were a bit small but the signs posted around the store assured me I could order them.

I was wrong. The clerk was sympathetic. She looked at other stores and offered to look for them in a different color but I was too crushed to care. I paid for my warm, reliable flats and stepped out into the darkness. It was cold, but my feet were warm. It will be a bit icy but the traction on my new shoes will keep me upright. Come snow, come mud, come hail and sleet ... my feet and my closet are prepared. And though they're missing a four-inch heel, they might have just enough shine and a square enough toe to stave off the fashion police.

Monday, October 20, 2008

On fashion ...

Angelica: Would you like to hear one of my poems?
Joe Banks: Sure.
Angelica: Long ago, the delicate tangles of his hair... covered the emptiness of my hand... Would you like to hear it again?
Joe Banks: Ok.
Angelica: Long ago, the delicate tangles of his hair... covered the emptiness of my hand.
My parents skipped town this weekend leaving me with two siblings to take care of and an insurance card. When the youngest came down sick, their excursion also left me with a lot of time in front of the TV while he slept. At one point I caught an episode of "What Not to Wear." The philosophy was simple: Whatever you're doing now, it's wrong.

Apparently income, time constraints, significant weight loss and dedication to community service are no excuse for wearing flats to work or dressing three times your size. The words "clothes can be an extension of your personality" and "let the real Michelle come out" were used frequently. Reminded me of some favorite words from the 1990 classic "Joe vs. the Volcano":

Marshall: They just pay me to drive the limo, sir. I'm not here to tell you who you are.
Joe Banks: I didn't ask you to tell me who I am.
Marshall: You were hinting around about clothes. That happens to be a very important topic to me, sir. Clothes, Mr...
Joe Banks: Banks.
Marshall: Banks. Clothes make the man. I believe that. You say to me you want to go shopping, you want to buy clothes, but you don't know what kind. You leave that hanging in the air, like I'm going to fill in the blank, that to me is like asking me who you are, and I don't know who you are, I don't want to know. It's taken me my whole life to find out who I am, and I'm tired now, you hear what I'm saying?

Sunday, October 19, 2008


I'm singing a solo in the Salt Lake City Tabernacle in two weeks.

I'm terrified.

One verse of one song. Not that big of a deal -- a fact I haven't been able to explain to my nervous system.

Today in rehearsal I broke out into a cold sweat two songs away from my turn. I began clearing my throat and panicked when it was dry. The water bottle belonging to the girl next to me became victim to my anxiety. The pews began closing in around me and I was certain it was going to take Maniac Magee to unravel the knots in my intestines. I focused on the pattern of the carpet on my way toward the microphone to keep the walls from spinning. I faked a grin at Merilee and began searching for faces in the crowd I recognized. My eyes wouldn't focus long enough in one spot to find anyone so I settled for the cultural hall curtains in the back of the gym. It was over before I got my breath back. The shaking didn't stop until we were halfway through the next song.

We get to repeat this physiological experiment next week and the week after until ...,8197,726-1-676,00.html.

See you there! I'll be the one in the pink lei trembling uncontrollably.

On food...

I've eaten chips off the floor. I've eaten food left in the fridge so long it carmelized to the styrofoam take-out container. I've even resorted to Ramen.

But the most desperate attempt to stay fed I ever staged in college was at Village Inn.

It's no secret college students aren't picky. Fast food, frozen food, instant food ... as long as its food and its cheap it will do. But one night we needed sugar and we wanted something real. Ten of us packed into a corner booth at Village Inn, ordering pie. Only $15 among us, so we shared pieces, casting aside requests for key lime or anything with coconut and peanuts to improve the chances the three generic pieces of apple, chocolate and strawberry would find their way to someone's mouth without allergic reactions.

Someone broke the code. Pulling out a credit card from home, they gave into the tantalizing marketing and ordered a warm plate of breakfast food ... meaty goodness piled in crepes pulled right off from the vibrantly colored menu. Suddenly, I was starving.

I finished off the whip cream, scraping my fork against the plate for any lingering pie crumbs and looked longingly at Sarah.

"I'm hungry," I mouthed.

She nodded.

"But I'm cheap," I added.

She nodded again.

Just then she was bumped by the young man behind her leaving his table. He grabbed his girlfriend's coat, threw down a tip and the two of them headed for the door.

There on the table was a plate with an untouched pile of golden, seasoned, delicious looking french fries. The sandwich next to it was unsalvageable, but even the diluted pond of ketchup was on the opposite side of the plate. My eyes got big and met with Sarah's.

"We shouldn't," I said.

"We can't," she responded.

I looked back down at the pie plate. I could smell the fries, their warmth was nearly tangible. My mind raced through options at home. Certainly something there was better than second-hand potatoes ... nothing came to mind. Culinary genius though she is, even Sarah couldn't turn half a box of Honey Bunches of Oats and a can of cream of chicken soup into a meal. The waitress was piling plates from another table into her brown bin, sweeping delicious remnants of food into the garbage as she went. I felt like that poor kid in India standing outside a hotel restaurant. She was getting closer.

With one swift move, Sarah was sweeping fries onto my empty plate. A quick look around for the waitress and another blurred move, the plate was back on the home table. No one had seen anything.

"Hey! When did you order those?" Matt asked.

I was piling on ketchup and getting ready to devour.

"This is really disgusting," I added.

"Agreed. No one can know we did this," she responded salting our plunder.

But we were full. And happy. And the best part? We still had enough left over for a tip.

What's in a name?

"Brooke's Blog" was already taken. A 14-year-old using lexicon and A TON!!!! of exclamation points six years ago. That's right ... the self-proclaimed "freshman pretty girl" wrote a total of one post in 2002 and hasn't written since. So an entire address is dedicated to a rant about Dan and Nessa and how "messed up" that situation is. She's 20 now. I can't help but wonder whatever happened to her ... and to Dan and Nessa. That little love triangle was just the beginning. I came across blogs that haven't had new posts in years and was introduced to middle-aged women and stock brokers alike who share my interests or name. In the meantime, this address is the result of repeated attempts at alliteration, personalization and creativity.

I leave you with these words from Geroge Bernard Shaw:
Syllables govern the world.