Thursday, August 25, 2011


From the moment I met Daniel, he has always been my best friend. It has been so long we've shared nearly everything and anything, and anything that hasn't been talked about is that it hasn't been brought up yet in conversation, not the fact that we *don't* want to tell each other. Now that I'm recalling things and just trying to be honest, there was one small hiatus where we weren't friends.. But we've since reconciled that. There was only one other small hiatus within junior high where he hung out with Mario and his group of friends and I hung out with another group, but toward the end of eighth grade we were one big group of friends anyway. Stick Wars!

An ex once asked me how she ranked among my friends. I told her she is in a different category. And I think this is the best explanations for any guy to his girl, in relation to his friends (if she asks.) She would be the one person I’d expect to tell me NOT to get into a fight. To take the “higher” ground. Daniel, on the other hand, would be the one person I’d expect to jump into the fight with me if I chose to fight. And he would.

There are too many memories to share all in one post. But here are a few highlights before we get into some memories:
 He knew my first crush before anyone else.
I knew his several of his crushes, and probably his first.
He knew my first celebrity crush before anyone else and I know his.
He met me at our "tree" whenever I needed to talk, and vice versa.
United Artist Theaters was our place to chill. First time I ever stole something was with him, $1 in quarters from the fountain so we could play in the arcade.
My second girlfriend (Carolanne) thought he was cuter than me, but I told him I thought she was cute, so he stayed away.
I introduced him to his first and only girlfriend.
I have almost gotten him into a couple fights. He's definitely pushed the boundaries with bigger guys because he knew I had his back.
He made me my first drink.

First time I left the house super late was to catch him walking from his house to our elementary school because his parents were fighting. How did I know? He called me. He asked me to stop him from walking all the way down there, because he couldn't stop himself. I stopped him from continuing his walk, we sat on a bench and he cried and talked about it until he chose to go home.

During 8th grade, he and I didn’t hang out much during school. However, we still lived fairly close and made our regular visits to chill outside of school. I don’t remember what happened that made this sentence so significant to me, but we were talking one day at Andersen Jr. High, and talking about fights. I never put up with fights and since I was a big kid, I usually got my way. I remember Daniel telling me this, “Fights? Brandon, before the end of any fight, not only would you have them hugging it out, but they’d be friends and have chosen to stop cursing because of you. Cause that’s what you do.”

Several years later, I took him with my family to Big Bass Days. It's a fishing tournament at Lake Pleasant for those interested. From what I can recall, he's not a huge fan of camping, but he shares my fishing interest and everyone wants a little vacation. My entire family got the fifth wheel whereas we got a tent outside. We didn't participate in the tournament, but we walked around, checked out girls, checked out guns, and checked out the biggest fish. We met a few cool cats and hung out and flung water at each other. I had met Carolanne and he had met another girl. I left him briefly to be introduced to Carolanne's father and mother that night. I came back and he said that the girl had to go do something. So I ended up saying goodbye to Carolanne (we had exchanged e-mail addresses) and walked off to go find her. We never did.

That night we got our little tent set up, talking about how much fun we actually had. The wind started to pick up..  Rain storm of the century. The fifth wheel my family stayed in rocked back and forth, our tent was coming up from the ground. We spent the entire night keeping the tent up which we succeeded at, and keeping the water out, which we failed at. We tried several times to sleep, we had set up pool lawn chairs (those long ones) to lie on top of as beds, it didn't work. I remember the moment Daniel realized we weren't getting any sleep that night.. See, people started to pull away early throughout the night because it was a dirt lot and with all of the rain it was turning into thick mud. Headlights passed our tent numerous times as we fought the storm. At one point, Daniel covers his eyes and goes, "Why don't those people with the headlights in front of us just leave?!" I hesitantly reply, "Those aren't headlights this time, that’s the sun." And it was 6am. My family walked out of the fifth wheel with us sitting on our chairs outside of our half-fallen tent and us just SOAKED. They asked how our night was.

Fast forward another year or so, Daniel and I were freshmen in high school. We were walking down a hall and one of Daniel’s classmates yells something rude to Daniel jokingly. Daniel turns and yells something back. One of the classmate’s friends took offense and stands up and yells something at Daniel. This guy is 6’3, slightly heavy set, but all in all a big guy. What does Daniel do? He decides to make a remark, “Hey buddy, you better put your dog here on a leash.” The big guy takes a step forward, so I, in turn, take a step forward. The big guy remarks something like to get out of his way, not my problem, something clichĂ©… But I don’t move, “If you try to do anything with him we’re going to have a problem.” I remember saying. He contemplates for a minute, and then sits down. Daniel and I walk away, I whisper to Daniel, “Dude, that was a big guy you were messing with..”

Daniel replies, “Yeah, I wouldn’t have said anything if you weren’t there. I kinda figured you’d step in.” And he laughs…

There are far more memories that are in fragments and Daniel holds the other pieces to. He and I could spend entire days just reminiscing about the old times.  He is as good as a friend could ever ask for. Daniel is far more intelligent than he gives himself credit for, and he has processed and understood love more than most guys our age have. He’s a gentleman at heart and I am glad to call him my best friend.

I'm sure all of you know by now how good it is to have friends. Something I’ve learned is to never think your friends are just there to pass the time. You have friends for a reason, and as long as u have friends u will always have someone to talk to, someone who will listen to you, someone who will be by your side when your need is at its most. I’ve come to realize that one of the best feelings in the world is to know your friends will stand by your side and stay there no matter how hard of road you take them on. No matter what journey lies ahead of u it's always good to know that you can rely on someone’s shoulder to be there for you if your first attempts lead you into the dirt. Don't think bigger numbers makes better friends, always have time to make that friend, that best friend, that friend who will stay with you forever and always.  -Daniel
~Just a thought

Monday, August 22, 2011

I'm gonna be a mighty king, so enemies beware.

This week… This week… This week was probably the best week of my life, followed by one of the roughest weekends. I don’t remember doing much Monday, I’m trying to recall, but nothing significant is coming up. If I am wrong, again, please correct me!

Tuesday was my birthday. Since Daniel had a big thing on Saturday, my plan was just to take my dogs to the park and then go on a date with Kelli. Just something laid back and mellow as my Facebook and text messages filled up with happy birthday wishes. Well, talking to Kelli some she said she didn’t see why I still didn’t try to do something and she said that she wanted to meet my friends and family. I texted about 17 people to try and make dinner. I wasn’t expecting much since it was within a one hour period. Nearly everyone showed! I was moved and impressed. I told Kelli that we would have company for our dinner and she was happy to hear it. Old Chicago with friends and family was a great time. I ordered three pizzas and everyone chowed to their hearts content.

Afterward I took Kelli to my dad’s house to hang out with my brothers some more, in which she discovered they played Magic: The Gathering.  That won them over quickly. Since we didn’t have a lot of time to teach her, I decided to play a game against my brothers to show her the game. She got into it and I was still able to show her the basics of the game with my hand. After the game she made me promise to teach her.
That night I went to drop her off and we talked for a long time again about whether or not we should be in a relationship. There are many things working against us as it is, but at the same time we could just tell that we didn’t really want to see it just drop off. I half-jokingly said that she was going to find Mr. Prince Charming in Tucson and forget about me anyway. She assured me that she had never found someone like me before and didn’t think anyone could compare. (Aw! I know right?! :D ) I walked her to the door and kissed her goodnight.

And then drove to work.

Work was not busy, the calm normal stuff. But time, for me, seemed to just slow down. It started getting cold and my throat started to hurt. By the end of the shift I was shivering, sweating, barely swallowing and E-mailing my boss saying I probably wasn’t going to make it into work the following evening cause I was messed up.  I took a hot shower so my body felt better with a fever, took some basic meds and tried to sleep. I woke up three hours later in a sweat and my throat worse. I shrug out of bed and trot off to the nearest Urgent Care. When I get into see the doctor he looks down my throat and says, “On a scale from 1-10, with 10 being the worst, I’d say that’s about an 8, how long have you had this again?” I told him less than 12 hours, his face showed surprise.. “Meds then.” And I got meds, a doctor’s note for work, and I texted Kelli who was worried aboot me and when I got home, I took the meds and fell asleep. I woke up still in a sweat, but feeling better.  I had a couple text messages from my mom and Kelli, who were both worried.
Kelli asked if I’d like her to come over and take care of me. I replied that she probably shouldn’t since I hadn’t been on antibiotics for 24 hours, but I know it would not have stopped me from bringing her soup if she was feeling sick. So she came over with some freshly baked cookies for me! I was thrilled. I told her that I was hungry and that I want Olive Garden, she didn’t have much of an appetite but would love to come along. So she drove us to Olive Garden, we ordered and munched a little, turns out neither of us were really hungry. Kelli then surprised me once again.

Kelli said that she knew it’d be difficult when she moved down there to see each other and be in a relationship. However, she saw in no way, shape, or form could she find someone like me and to not give it a shot would be ridiculous. She said that if I wanted to give it a shot, she would be taken when she got down to Tucson. I wanted to leap over the table to kiss her then, but refrained and said that I would like that, but I will think about it some.  We drove to my house to conclude the evening, we got out of the truck and I hugged her and said I would really like her to be taken by me. She smiled and agreed. We walked into my house, she was reintroduced to my dogs, met my roommates and their kids. Then we proceeded to head upstairs and we napped and talked and just enjoyed ourselves. Linux and Joey made appearances regularly jumping on the bed and playing around some.

Though the night was amazing, I wasn’t feeling well enough to work, so I had called out.
Thursday rolls around and I text Jake telling him I won’t be able to make it to jog as I have strep, then text Aaron and tell him I can’t make it to the gym for the same reason.  I sleep most of the day away, waking up to take meds, playing some video games, seriously trying to relax as my throat is being bitchy.
Kelli came over later that evening, she had some theater stuff to handle. We didn’t go eat anywhere but spent the night with my pups napping and talking and just enjoying each other’s company. She tells me that I’m invited out with her and her parents to a country grill tomorrow (Friday) I happily accept. She left a little earlier than I would have liked, but it was all well.  I get a phone call a little later from her, she said that a couple of guys were giving her the lookie-loo at the 7-11 near my house. Now, being checked out is one thing. But she ended up telling me they made crude comments and one guy actually got in her way from leaving. I was furious and seriously considered going over there to teach them some basic manners and simple physics.. IE, this tire iron going at an excessive rate will break the face… I kept my cool though while she was on the phone as to not freak her out. She seemed to calm down ok and we hung up.

Friday flew by and spent most of it at my dad’s. I received a text from Kelli saying to be at her place by 7. I got to talk to my dad quite a bit which was nice, watched tv till 6:30 drew closer. As I got up and told them I had to leave, my dad stopped me and goes, “Going out with her parents? And you are wearing that?” I looked down at my gray T-shirt and darker gray jeans with my hat. I nod and he shakes his head and tells me to follow him. I ended up borrowing a short-sleeved collared shirt and then used some of my brother’s mouse and did my hair up. I looked awesome. I started the drive.

Kelli’s parents are a lot of fun btw. We get there, order some food and I order a beer. We listen to country music and watch people two-step. All of us agreed that we want to learn how. I go and use the restroom. A fast song comes on and it occurs to me that I should ask Kelli to dance. I button my shirt up real quick and tuck it in and as I go out there I pull Kelli to the dance floor. Neither of us knew what we were doing but it was a ton of fun anyway. We go to sit down as her parents applaud. I tell Kelli that we’re doing it again, but she shakes her head and goes, “I don’t think so, I’m quite comfortable here.” I laugh and we continue to watch. It wasn’t until the song “Honey Bee” comes on did we dance again. And much to my surprise Kelli was the one to drag ME onto the dance floor. We sang and tried to copy some of the other dancing steps, then we just did our own thing and I spun her a couple of times. Tons of fun.

We get back to her place and her mom invites me to stay the night on the couch since Kelli is leaving in the morning. Kelli and I go to her room and we continue to talk and kiss. Mostly talk though, since it did kind of hit us again that she’ll be in Tucson in less than 24 hours. We talk about how we feel about each other, big concerns, little ones, her doubts, my doubts, that sorta thing. At the end we grew merry again because she really does like me and I really like her and we want to be together.  I ended up not staying the night, because Kelli knew she had a ton of stuff to do in the morning and needed rest, whereas I stay up throughout the night.
That night I went and got her flowers and a small gift for her to open on the road, I dressed them up as best as I could and when 5:30 struck I drove back to her house, despite what Kelli had to say.

As I got there the garage was open as was the back of their truck, preparing for the Tucson move. I parked across the street and got out, her dad coming out of the garage door. I got nervous, because it was just me and him now, and I’m sure he noticed I wasn’t there that morning. But he saw me and the flowers. He told me, “Go knock on the front, they are expecting me there, Kelli should be right by the door." My nerves were extinguished. I went and knocked, their dogs barked like crazy. Kelli opened the door and her smile was one of the ages. She hugged me, asked me what I was doing there, accepted the flowers, hugged me again, showed her mom, hugged me again. Lots of hugging :p. I helped them load up the truck, set and load the trailer and just spent time with them. I gave Kelli one final hug and kiss goodbye, and she was off to Tucson! I shook her dad’s hand and got in my car, I drove home and slept quite the sleep.
That was my week, how was yours?

"For I know the plans I have for you says the Lord. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." Jeremiah 29:11

~Just a thought.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

It's not my river I adore, but others. Let them flourish.

Mk, Back in my earlier posts, I had mentioned that Dylan loves to read and I love write. Well, I forgot to mention Dylan loves to write too. He's good at it, his style is very different than mine, but his comes out with so much mystery that its difficult to stop reading. I asked him, more than once, if I can post this. He's finally allowed me to share to all my wonderful readers.
This is something Dylan wrote, and he's said it will never be any longer or expound in any way. It's for the reader to fill in all the blanks. Enjoy as I did.


            Do you remember the old stories? Who would have thought, those years back, that you'd be the hero in one? I didn't, certainly, and I was your best friend. If I couldn't see it, I don't think anyone could. Do you remember those notices that were sent out as you began? How foolish it must have seemed, challenging the rulers of darkness at eighteen. I can remember word for word what they said.

Eighteen years ago, a boy was born who would one day take up a blade forged of bone and steel, coated in brass and etched with gold, a blade that will shine in the dying light of the world, a symbol of hope for mankind. Do not fear, for the savior of the world has come to free us.

            I knew it would be dangerous. I warned you. I had read the old stories, I knew them by heart. I tried to tell you. Becoming the bearer of such a weapon takes trials and tribulations, a gauntlet of danger, a bevy of horrors, lost loves and loves fulfilled. You knew about Gwydion, your alleged ancestor. But you told me it didn't matter how difficult, how terrible, you were going to make the attempt if it killed you. How could you forbid me from coming along, those years ago? We had stood against everything together up to that point, but apparently being chosen the hero of mankind changes a person.
            It took a lot of work to track you down, Andrew. I was caught out there when you killed this place's dark masters. I'm still unsure as to why you changed your name. At the very least, you could have chosen one of the old kings to name yourself after. But Mortalis, well, nobody knows the meaning of that. I finally looked it up one day, through all the texts I've kept. And I doubt you're really all that human anymore, as your name suggests. Obviously you still bleed red, but anyone human would have faltered before now, or died. Force of will, is that what you're trying to say? I can see what you mean. I got here, I made more of myself than I was. No, that's not right, actually. I'm exactly who I was, who I have always been. The only difference now is that I have grown older, and that you now listen to me. I'm sure the restraints have something to do with that though.
            I'm sorry about the pain. And having taken your delightful sword. But you, you left me behind in that boring town we grew up in. Those numberless afternoons of wanting to be heroes together, and you left me behind when opportunity came calling. Look at you now, shining armor rent and torn, helm broken and battered, your sword dulled. Even that light in your eyes has faded. Yes, you've done as you promised the world, the tyrants have been deposed. Nothing is in place to stop a similar individual from taking their place, any of them. Ah, you never realized that? The unfortunate masses you were fighting for are not going to stop it. No, no, struggling won't help. Those bonds are quite secure. And it hurts me to see you drawing that much fresh blood.
            As I said those years ago, you're not going to live through this. And without you, nothing stands in the way of an exact copy of this thing you have destroyed from being born again. When people play 'pick a hero', it really means they aren't willing to fight. Nobody joined you on your journey, nobody even wanted to besides me. And with what I've done here, what I am doing to you now, it's quite unlikely I'll resist a hostile takeover. I might actually guide the next supreme emperor, or whoever it was you defeated. What? What are you trying to say? Hah!
            You can hardly call me evil, when you don't know what it really means. I assure you, I'm good, as are you. What I have done here is good. Quite good in fact. You see, good is polar to bad, negligent, or simply 'doing it wrong'. I have done right, you are here, I am here in a position of power, all quite well and good. According to plan, some might say. And well, counter to unwell, referring to a state of rightness, of order. Death is orderly, as is captivity. But chaos is not evil. The phrase 'Good and Evil' is nonsense, they are unrelated. Good and bad, right and wrong, chaos and order, black, white, dark, light, well, unwell, pure, impure, and evil.
            So you see, evil has no polar opposite. I believe this is because the opposite simply does not exist. Hero and villain are a matched pair, one merely the lesser of two evils. And I, indeed, your lesser for so long, barely now having me potential recognized as yours was. I knew, I too could be great. I could rise.
            As has been said by so many before, in the old stories, we're not so different, you and I. I could have been the hero if not for some twist of fate. Your ancestors or mine, who really knows the lineage of storybook heroes? And here we stand, together, at the end of the road. Bound here not by some fate, or shared past, but by my will alone. Not so different, but I, the 'normal' one, have bested the 'destined' hero. The 'savior of the world'. Quiet now. Your time is up. Your struggles are over. Let me end your suffering, with your own blade.

Any comments, questions, or critiques can be done by e-mailing me or commenting below. That's all folks :)

“You should know
How great things were before you
Even so
They're better still today
I can't think of who I was before
You ruined everything
In the nicest way”

- You Ruined Everything, by Jonathan Coulton
~Just a thought

Monday, August 15, 2011

Lay in the morning dew and let your sorrows drift away.

Wow, to say life has been going great would still be a slight understatement. This week was another beautiful one people. Monday I didn't do much that I can recall, please correct me if I'm wrong. Tuesday was another workout that went well, talked quite a bit with Jake and we talked about Thursday (our running day in which I've canceled on every time so far), and about a few other insignificant things. I like hanging out with Jake, because he always has stories of his police work, and even though I feel we are getting closer as friends, we don't really talk about anything serious, unless its about working out. I know its sounds bad, but its fun to have a friend to BS a day away without worrying about anything.

Wednesday.. Wednesday, Wednesday was an amazing day. It didn't start out too swell. I had to go to the dentist. I'm like everyone else in the world, I hate the dentist. BUT, I hate them because they like to remind me how bad my teeth are. They were examined, and I need a root canal and one pulled, neither of which this dentist does. She's still a sweet heart and I plan getting my cavities removed/fixed with her. She is able to schedule me a same-day appointment with a root canal specialist.

So I get to the root canal guy, he X-Rays my teeth and agrees that they are pretty bad. He looks at the one he needs to drill, and then looks at the one I'm supposed to get pulled, He X-rays it for free, and then says that he *may* be able to fix that tooth as well, IF there is enough tooth left after getting rid of the decay. Well, we do the one, cost me $377 ($90 more for SAME-DAY visits.. Bogus) but my tooth is no longer hurting me. VERY happy.

After the dentist I go on a non-date with this beautiful girl/lady/woman (I feel comfortable saying girl more so than woman, is that ok?). I say non-date because she is moving and doesn't want to feel horrible if things don't work out after she has moved. Anyway, we have a great time at Uncle Sam's (YUM!) and her friend stops by and we talk briefly. I walk them both out when it nears 10pm and hug them goodbye. It was amusing cause my non-date came in for a second hug because our first one was pretty half assed and we both wanted a better hug than previously. Went to work after.

Thursday was very eventful. I did make it to running with Jake. We jogged for a little over a mile. He wasn't stressin too much but I sure was. But he's a good guy and kept pace with me and pushed me farther than I would have myself. Went to Native New Yorker that night with several friends to catch up and eat. We hadn't done it as a large group since Will's passing, and Donna (as well as the rest of us) felt that a tragedy shouldn't be the thing that brings us together. So, all of us show up, minus a very whew who live elsewhere *cough* Kevin *cough*. We eat and be merry. There were a few embarrassing things recorded, a few more embarrassing things that weren't, the waitress always had perfect timing and seemed to enjoy hanging out with us despite me being slightly obnoxious. Don't worry people I tipped her well. I had to jet a little early cause I had work, said goodbye and went on my way.

I get pulled over, almost get arrested, but that's a story I'll tell in person when asked, so I don't repeat myself as often.

I get to work, it seems to be ok, then it happened... Around 4:30 AM, a whole site for a customer loses internet. Now, this customer is a multi-million dollar company, this 'site' I'm told is several buildings and ALL about production. We're talking a couple thousand dollars a minute they aren't up (I might be exaggerating a little, but not by much I promise you). So I get about 5 phone calls from each section of the site letting me know what I already knew thanks to our systems here. This is how my phone calls go..

Call 1: To our Central Operations Manager, he's in charge of the issues in regards of the customer and he must be informed of any critical issues. I leave a voicemail.
Call 2: A call to the ISP Level 3, who says they don't see anything wrong, but they'll open an investigation.
Call 3: A call to our Network on-call. He doesn't wake up, Left Voice mail.
Call 4: Received a call from the COM asking for what's going on, what's being done about it, and to make sure an Incident Report is created for further review.
Call 5: A call to L3 - They let me know they called Verizon since they own the line, it could be a routing issue.
Call 6: A call to the Network on-call. He picks up, I give him the run-down, he says he'll investigate the firewall and see if its something on our side.
Incident Report created..
Call 7: A call from L3, says Verizon doesn't see any issues either, but they are investigating still and still awaiting confirmation from them
Call 8: A call from the customer with the issue. During this phone call, the Network on-cal IMs me and asks me to trouble shoot with the customer so we can narrow down the issue because we strongly feel its a DNS issue. It's about 15-20 minutes of troubleshooting that gets us NO WHERE. I disconnect the call. The Network on-call tells me that he's passing this issue off to the 1st shift network guy so he can go back to bed. I catch the 1st shift on-call up and give him the ticket number.
Call 9: L3 again, no issues still found. I told him what we're doing over here to get it up and running as well, we both document our issues and both continue to investigate.
Call 10: It's the customers IT guy, giving us the rundown of what he can and cannot do. Every device appears up, but they can't access the internet, but can ping EVERYTHING, even outside the network. which, again, REALLY points to a DNS issue. But IP addresses don't work either.. UGH.
Finished up the Incident Report and e-mailed it to all necessary.

Throughout this process I do call the site to ask "Does it work?" cause everything on me end was saying it should be working. Unfortunately, It's at this time I need to get going, so for two hours just constant phone calls, documenting, and writing reports and e-mails. These nights remind me why they let us get paid for a week with watching movies, because when this stuff happens I need to know and document everything. I love nights like this. I always say that a fun job is a job I feel like I have an importance at.. Dish Network I was one in a million, a gold star, but just one of many waiting to replace me. Here, however, for those two hours, I was irreplaceable, I knew the issue better than anyone and I was the go-to guy for information.. Even though I wasn't one of the admins fixing the issue, I sure as hell felt like I played an important part getting it fixed.. It felt good. I left a little late that day to make sure everything was documented properly and so, if need be, a 1st shifter could help.

Friday I spent it with my sister for her birthday. I took her to dinner with my brothers Tylor and Dylan and their friend Ryan. During dinner my sister got a call from Jeremy wishing her a happy birthday, he asked for me and goes, "Alright, alright, though I'll never say this to your face, you are the better brother for taking her out to dinner." DAMN RIGHT =D. We eat and I get the people at Garcia's to sing to her and give her some ice cream. Later her, Ryan, and myself went to a hotel she had for the night and drank wine and beer and chilled in the jacuzzi and pool. It was fun getting to know Ryan (we hadn't spent much time with him prior) and hanging out with my sister. All in all very relaxing.

Saturday.. Wow, this is getting to be LONG. But what a week? RIGHT?! Annnnyway SATURDAY. Daniels birthday celebration! I treated him and Donna to a movie, Lynne, Isaac, and Mason showed up. We saw Rise of the Planet of the Apes. I really enjoyed the movie, though a little disappointed as to how it ended. Then we went to Dave and Busters and met up with Kevin, Mario, Alicia and her boyfriend Elvis. We ate some good GOOD food, played some games (pictures on FB PEOPLE) and then Daniel got his chocolate cake with ice cream. Funny thing is, Daniel doesn't like chocolate.. So Kevin and I took it from him and ate most of it. Twas good.

We say goodbye to Alicia, Elvis, Lynne and Kevin as the rest of us headed off to the Casino. Daniel, Isaac, and I played roulette the entire time since we didn't have much cash. Mario lost the most playing both blackjack and roulette, and then Mason won the most. If you wanna know numbers you're gonna have to ask them. I ended up being down $8.75 at the end, but for three hours worth of entertainment? Cheaper than the movies.

After that we ended up hitting up Gus's pizza bistro, it was PACKED for 2:30AM, bars were closing, everyone was drunk and wanted food, and Gus's is 24 hours and really the only place open.. So, we get some food rather quickly, then take off to Isaac's and Mason's place and eat. We eat till about 5am (had to drop off Mario somewhere within that time frame. Donna receives a message on Facebook saying Kevin is up (only getting like, 4 hours of sleep since he had to ride back to Tucson) and so the group of us all texted him separately "good night". He appeared amused and replied with "good morning".

Sunday (Today), I slept till 1pm, then went and took Kelli out to Oregano's, for those who haven't been there, OMG delicious... Great price for LOTS of food. Then, Kelli surprised me with this cookie/ice cream platter that I had never had before, very delicious. At the end of the date she said that she wanted to pay since I paid last time and it was only fair. I accepted this logic and she went into her purse to find out she didn't have enough. =P She had left her card at home and only had enough to pay for half of it. I laughed both with and at her (she was embarrassed I think) and I paid for my half. At the end I walked her to her car and we kissed goodbye.

I headed to my dads and played Settlers of Catan with Dylan and Drake. Told them about my date. Drake won the game, first time for him too. Go him.

Around 8pm I drove off to Tilted Kilt with my buddy Mike, we are trying to make this a regular thing. It's karaoke night then. Mike likes to sing and he held me on my promise to sing this time around. I was really nervous going up there, but right before my huge debut, they started playing the Cupid shuffle. Now, for those who haven't been reading. I'm an expert. So I started dancing before everyone got up there. More people joined but my confidence was UP since I did a group thing first.

I chose "Friends in low places" by Garth Brooks. I told everyone there to help me sing the chorus before the song started, when it started to play everyone cheered!Everyone to sing the chorus with me (at least I believe so). It was a lot of fun. Some good food and great views and an awesome time, I shook Mikes hand and trotted off to work.

But it doesn't stop there... Tonight my boss comes in about an hour late with a fudge cake saying happy birthday. He did it a day early so my whole team could have cake with me. Very nice of him. My friend Becka posting on my wall trying to get everyone to text me Happy birthday whether they know my number or not.. Also a day early to give people a chance to read the post. Very devilshly sweet of her as well.

Now e-mail me telling me of your week! I wanna know!

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our dark that most frightens us. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people don't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine as children do. Its not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own lights shine, we unconsiously give other people the right to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."
- Timo Cruz from Coach Carter

~Just a thought

Thursday, August 11, 2011


Ace and I dated for two and half years. First and only woman so far that I've dated AND moved in with. She has affected my life probably more than I realize. But I will try to get in out in a few paragraphs below.

The one BIG thing she's taught me is to take chances. I've always had self esteem and confidence, but I also always played it safe. Meeting new people and hanging out with new people just wasn't a HUGE thing for me. After all, my best friends I've still had since 3rd, 4th, 8th, and 9th grades (Daniel, Gary, Will, Jaime and Isaac.) If she wanted to go out, and it wasn't one of MY friends, I didn't really want to go. Scratch that, I DIDN'T want to go. They were her friends, but that's what I saw them as, HER friends. For the first half of our relationship, when we went and hung out with friends, the other went their own little way. Ace did not often (if ever) hang out when Daniel or Gary came over. And I know I wasn't all that uppity about hanging out with her friends. I didn't mind them, and always had fun when they came to OUR house, but going out? Pfft, who'd wanna do that?

Speaking of Chances, lemme tell you about Linux... I don't really know how to start. Well, in lamest terms, he is my dog. But I love him to death. Closest pet I've ever had. He has changed my life for the better in SO many ways it is unbelievable.. His post comes later. BUT him coming up in this post has merit too.

Ace named Linux and convinced me to get him. Without Ace, I would NOT have the dogs I have today.

Ace's sister and former fiancé fostered dogs for a long time. They fostered pregnant bitches (used in the proper scientific term!) until they gave birth, and after 8 weeks turned them back into the Humane Society. The reason they foster the dogs is because the Humane Society's primary job is to cut down on the over population of dogs. They would abort or put to sleep the puppies to make sure they didn't take the extra food or something. Anyway, again, not what the post is about.

Linux's mother, Izzy, is a beautiful white husky with one blue eye and one brown. She gave birth to 5 dogs. Two white, two black, and Linux, a white one with black spots. Now, for those who don't know yet, I love Husky’s and Malamutes. I think they are such beautiful dogs and at that time I always imagined me with a Husky and a German Sheppard. Nice, big, noble dogs. Well, Ace thought here is my opportunity to have one!

After some convincing and having her purposely put him in my arms and play with him, I finally chose to adopt him. The MOMENT they delivered Izzy and the puppies back to the Humane Society I was at the front desk paying $80 for a dog that I knew not how to train in a two bedroom apartment that already hosted one other dog that I could barely afford / had time to take care of. It was a stupid decision and a chance I would get attached to a dog that I couldn't take care of...  It is one of the best decisions I have ever made in my life.

Along the same route, I don't think I would have the job I have without her. I don’t remember if I made the final decision, or if she made it for me. But, without her, I would have not been able to process my decision on starting this new job. In case you friends don't know the decision I had to make, I'll give you a quick rundown:

I worked at Dish Network for two years as an Advanced Technical Support Representative. I was hired on as one (very few were) and was paid a shit ton for doing the job well. On average I took about 50 calls a day and my average time per call was around 8-10 minutes. I knew what I was doing, how to fix it, IF I could fix it, and I knew every which way to talk to customers. I was the golden boy at it. The issue was, back-to-back-to-back-to-back calls REALLY took a tole on my stress, Worked 6 days a week usually with school, and the very BEST day were days I was leaving just grumpy, not pissed. BUT, really good money, paid for everything and more and free TV. They wanted to make me a supervisor. Pay raise, first supervisor position I've ever had, and no more phone calls...

Then OneNeck came a-calling. It's a support center job, 3rd shift (which I wasn't looking forward to), start back down at the bottom, no supervisor position, and a pay cut from what I was making as an ATSR. Which should I take? I went back and forth numerous times. Golden boy at Dish with that shiny yellow lanyard? Or start over, hope for less stress and MAYBE some opportunities that come my way? Which would you have done? Honestly?

I remember lying on the floor with my feet on the couch just talking to her, going over bills and just seeing if we could survive with what I would make. We'd have to get rid of DISH, since that would've been an extra ~$70 a month that we would have added and we talked about trying to lower our plans on our phones, etc. Just changes, LOTS of changes that I, as I said before, wasn't a big fan of.
Eventually she just told me to go for it. She said that she could see it in my eyes that I wanted out of Dish, and that this was a solid opportunity. So I did.

Also one of the best decisions I have ever made. I absolutely LOVE my job, I can still live super comfortable, I have opportunities here that are available and come my way. I thoroughly enjoy 3rd shift and have made several friends along the way.

The final thing she changed in me was my values. I always valued friends, family, God (to an extent) and doing the right thing. However, I put a high value on money and objects as well. Furniture’s, computers, pots and pans, you name it. If it was mine, it was MINE. It was mine and unless it broke, I didn't want to give it up. She talked about just selling everything and getting in our car and driving till the car broke down and that's where we'd live. An adventure. I couldn't do it. We would argue about the hypothetical situation of selling my things and I would get upset.
WHY would I sell the entertainment center?
WHY would I EVER get rid of my couch? It's suede and comfortable.
WHY would I move? My friends and family are here!

The argument was ridiculous but I would get up in arms about it. It wasn't until MUCH later that I put the value of my things in its proper place. They are replaceable and should not be valued by anything more than the price tag I paid for them.

I am happy to say when I moved out of my house, I got rid of my three couches, my kitchen table, pots and pans, loads of towels, an old entertainment center, a dresser, and numerous other things. And I am comfortable in knowing I could get rid of everything in my room no problem if the situation called for it.

....So, if you ever ask me about Ace.. I will probably tell a crazy ex story, because those are funnier and I dig sympathy points. Thanks to her, though, I have a job I love, a pair of dogs I love even more, and my stress level is 0 to 1 on a scale to 100.

Thank you Ace.

"A rich person is not someone who has the most, but who needs the least." - The Interview with God.

~Just a thought