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November 23, 2007

Now this is cool…

Filed under: A life worth living,Observations — sbj @ 10:44 pm

Lorena Ochoa won an LPGA tournament last weekend, and plans to celebrate:

Ochoa plans to celebrate in typical fashion.

She said she would donate $100,000 to a relief fund in Tabasco, Mexico, for flood victims. A good chunk of it will go to her foundation in Guadalajara, to buy land for an elementary and high school it is building for underprivileged children.

“I always want to give back,” she said. “And this is a good day.”

If that is really her “typical” was of celebrating, I think I have a new favorite golfer!

November 13, 2007

Habitat for Humanity

Filed under: A life worth living — sbj @ 8:51 pm

My new cause (for the day) is Habitat for Humanity.  At least once in teh next month, my family will be providing lunch to Habitat volunteers on the job site.  Seems like a fun and low impact way to get the family introduced the spirit of giving back.  I’ll write more after we do out first one (I’m waiting for Habitat to get back to me with dates and locations).

Hope is not a strategy.  If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem.  Go out and make a difference, it feels good.

The boys education

Filed under: Just life — sbj @ 8:43 pm

Had conferences and received report cards last week.  Both boys are still doing very well, in fact quite advanced work.  I do feel like I’m losing my grasp on their education however, which makes me sad.  In the early days Preston got his education from me, and social skills were developed during school hours.  Now, most of his education comes from his school, same with Shahien.  I’m going to have to do something about this.

I’m very lucky to have two very above average sons, now I just need to get back to being an above average father for them.

What’s next, the sun taking a day off?

Filed under: Just life — sbj @ 2:46 am

Roger Federer(ererer) has now lost 2 matches in a row.  My biblical knowledge is a bit rusty, but I think that is like the second or third sign of the apocalypse… go get ‘em Rog… I’m too young to be answering questions about my life to the ultimate gate keeper just yet!!!

While I’m angry…

Filed under: Observations — sbj @ 1:07 am

check this out:

http://www.idahostatesman.com/eyepiece/story/205994.html

Now, mind you, I’m all about the family and having it be as solid as it can possibly be. Seriously, Many if not most families would be better with one full time stay at home parent. But that is simply not the reality of the world we live in. If we are going to encourage lack of commitment so many aspects of our society, can we seriously expect people to stick out a marriage????If you don’t like you job, just change it. People don’t have careers anymore, they have a series of jobs. You don’t even settle down when you reach the panicle. Make CEO, and get a better offer than the one you have… off you go. “Free agency” and “brand you” is a concept that is taught by the business experts of the day.

People change (or at least did until the phone companies wised up to it) phone companies every couple of months, just to get the free gift for switching long distance carriers. Internet loan companies encourage you to ignore your personal banker and pit them all against themselves, etc. etc. etc.

Loyalty, commitment, dedication, those are not the buzz words of this generation.

Obviously, I cannot offer any of my own opinions on the specific finding of the committee, or anything the legislature does or says. However, I do think it is not too much of a reach to point out that applying a standard created and adopted by a *completely different culture* (that just happened to inhabit the same real estate) is not going to work when trying to establish guidelines for this society.

Our culture does not support long term institutions like careers and marriages, unfortunate as that is, it is reality. 

Lets take a look at the root cause of the issue, and maybe we can actually accomplish something substantive.  Seems reasonable to me, anyway.

PS… here is to all of you that have risen above the times and remained committed to… well… anything!!!!

Say what?!?!?!?!?!?

Filed under: Observations — sbj @ 12:48 am

during a conversation about the upcoming presidential elections the other day someone at worked suggested the following:

“I hope Hillary and Obama do not win the election, it will trivialize the presidency of the United States of America”

They went on to support this seemingly inane statement by siting “historical references” of the litany of “important and powerful” positions that are now lightly regarded because they have been populated by minorities of some form of fashion. The first they cited was the Prime Minister of England, and they also cited several other European presidential offices, etc.My first thought was, this is good news. If the best argument that the opponents of a minority president can muster is this desperate flight of fancy, it must be a good day in this country.

However, after having a few days to stew on this, I am not quite satisfied to sit with that knowledge. So, now I must rant a little bit. Can people, in 2007 (almost 2008) seriously be this ignorant? If the best person becomes president, it must be trivialized if that person does not look like me (white and male)? What overpass did these people fall off in their youth, and did anyone get the license plate of the semi that hit them on the way down.

Hmmm… I think my ire is showing, perhaps I’ll try to address this another time when I’m more level headed…

November 9, 2007

Oprah…

Filed under: A life worth living,Observations — sbj @ 9:21 pm

I go back and forth on Oprah.  I think she is fantastic in so many ways, however, her theatrics often cancel out some of the good she does, in my view.

Last week, she ran into a buzz saw:

     http://www.nydailynews.com/gossip/2007/10/29/2007-10-29_oprah_winfrey_so_sorry_for_abuse_nightma.html

Not good, not good at all.

However, lets focus on Oprahs part in this.  The woman opened this facility which “provides quality education to underprivileged girls”, and when things went horribly wrong how did she handle it?  Lets take a look:

“Oprah canceled appointments and flew to South Africa twice in the past few weeks after allegations that one of the matrons fondled a girl and that other pupils had been physically abused.”

and…

“… gave the girls her personal telephone number, her e-mail address and her postal address so that they could contact her around the clock.”

  • That is called taking ownership,
  • That is called being there for those that need you,
  • That is called having priorities,
  • That is called exactly how to handle this type of situation (catch that Michael Vick, Larry Craig, et. al.?),
  • That is, in a simple word, called “impressive”.

Here’s to you Oprah Winfrey, as impressive when things are bad as when they are good.  A rare and fantastic quality.

I’m a giver!!!

Filed under: A life worth living — sbj @ 5:38 pm

Okay… its not serving hot muffins to the elderly, but it is what I can do right now!

I am now officially a research detective for, not one, but two charities.  In a nut shell, this means I research and find resources that would be of benefit to the charity, or the primary beneficiaries of the charity.  It works well for me because I can do it in my free time (on the internet at home while watching a movie, for example) and it is still directly helping people. 

I am very excited about my first step into my life, worth living… more to come!

Remember, you too can help.  Seek out a way to help someone else.  You can find easy ways to do so at volunteermatch.org.  Go ahead and click on it, you know you want to… all the cool people are doing it!!!

ps: No, I am not affiliated with that site in any way, I just think it is a great way to get started…

November 8, 2007

A life worth living…

Filed under: A life worth living — sbj @ 3:48 pm

This is a new category, and hopefully a new chapter in my life.  I have decided that there is a lot more that I can contribute to the world than I currently am.  As such, I am going to start working on adding value to my life by adding it to the lives of others.  This new category will chronicle those efforts (so lets all hope there are lots of entries in this category.

Vomteermatch.com is a great resource for finding ways to volunteer in your community (and, if you want to volunteer virtually, anywhere in the country).  This is where I have begun my quest… we shall see where it takes me!

November 7, 2007

Love lost…

Filed under: Just life — sbj @ 7:32 pm

… can, it appears, be found. 

It has been speculated upon, by myself and many others, that once a person falls out of love they are hard-pressed, at best, to fall back into it with the same person.  Time and time again I have seen people try to win back the affections of someone that has fallen (truly fallen) out of love with them.  In most of those cases, failure has been the rder of the day.

I have seen it work, but when something fails enough, you start looking for external reasons for why it worked in the few cases that it did.  You start doubting the validity of the cases in which it works.  I have to admit that I was beginning to adopt this mind set.

However, along came Dustin and Mindy.  First, he fell out of love (sort of) and left her.  She hung around for a while, but, due the annoying fact that she was human, eventually fell out of love herself.  As luck (and human nature) would have it, at this point, Dustin came to his senses and wanted Mindy back… oops.  Mindy wanted to do her own thing, she had just gotten over this joker anyway.  It looked as if they were done for.

Today I received an email from Mindy saying “the next time you see your brother, tell him I never want to be without him again”.  They are happily back together, and I could not be happier about this.

What makes this unique, and worthy of mention, to me, is that fact that they have no external “need” to be back together.  No children, no property, nothing.  Which mean, they just want to be back together and are in love again.

Hope springs eternal!!!!!  Today, I am very happy.

Vouchers…

Filed under: Observations — sbj @ 12:02 am

So, I’m trying to figure out why a person would be against school vouchers.  Many intelligent folks are against them, so there must be a decent reason (even if it not the best reason or choice).  Anyone out there that can help me?

Here is my current position.  I pay taxes to support society.  Part of what I’m paying for is the education of my children.  That is where part of my money goes.  I understand that part of my education related taxes are designed to support the system as a whole, and not my children, however I pay the education part of my taxes for my entire life, and while my kids are in school, I’d like it to be a little more focused on them.  Therefore, it makes sense to me that if I want my kids to go to this school over here, instead of that school over there, I should be able to get the same assistance that everyone else gets from the “society we have become accustomed to” fund.

I look forward to hearing other opinions on this matter so I can expand my knowledge and experience related to the topic.  Thanks in advance!!!

November 6, 2007

I love Vegas… I hate Vegas… I love Vegas

Filed under: Just life,Poker — sbj @ 8:58 pm

I am the “Emma” of the gambling world!!!  Just got back from an emotional rolercoaster of a weekend in Vegas. 

Thursday night I only had about an hour to gamble, so I threw $20 down on craps and 45 minutes later cashed out $261, multiplying my investment by 13 in that amount of time.  I love Vegas!!!!

At roughly 2:30am Friday night/Saturday morning I was sitting in front of a stack of $3000 in chips (all proceeds of my $200 investment).  At roughly 2:35am (same night/day) I was flat broke.  I hate Vegas!!!!!

Saturday night I was short on time again, I only had about 30 minutes.  I sat down with $20 at a blackjack table and 30 minutes later cashed out $250.  I could laern to like Vegas again, I suppose.

Sunday night at around 8:00pm, I bought $100 into a poker game.  At roughly 11:30pm, sitting behind a stack of over $700 chips, I decided I had been sitting long enough and needed a little break.  So I went over to the craps table and put $25 on each of the hard ways.  I hit 8 hard ways in a row and cashed out $1700.  I then went back to the poker room (sufficiently stretched) and played until 3:30am.  When I cashed out my craps chips and my poker chips, the grand total (after tipping to round out the numbers)was $4,700. I love Vegas!!!!!

That is the end of the story, because I went back to the hotel, slept for 90 minutes and drove back home.  I’m tired… but I love Las Vegas!!!!!

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