i am awkward, and I like to watch tv

My Mom and I

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For as far back as I can remember people have told me that my mom and I look alike and I am never quite sure how to take this comment.  Are they trying to say that I look like a forty something women or could their intentions be to say that my mom looks like a dude? In either case it is hard to accept this as complimentary.  Even though there may be some similarities in our appearances our personalities are more diverse.   

One thing about me that I feel is worth noting, is that I am not a morning person. I don’t mean that in typical meaning that we usually attach to the phrase “morning person” that describes how approachable a person is early in the morning.  When I say that I am not a morning person I mean that I don’t usually experience the morning, or to put it more accurately I experience as little of the morning as possible.  When I have some place to be I try to wake up about half an hour before I am supposed to be there.My mom takes a different approach to mornings, she is up at about five every morning. Even if there is nothing special on the agenda, for some reason sleeping in is not an option for her.  I suppose sometimes if you are the only one awake you might won’t some one to talk to, and I think for this reason my mom talks to me when I am asleep.  

At some point in our very one sided conversations she may assign some sort of chore for me to that day.When ever these chores are given to me I am never aware of them, mostly because I am asleep when they are given to me.  This tends to create some very confusing arguments.  I can’t tell you how many times my mom has come home upset with me for not paying the water bill, meanwhile I am clueless about why I am being yelled at.

One other chore that was assigned to me while I was asleep was the task of shredding all of my family’s personal documents that my mom refuses to throw away due to fear of identity theft.  As usual she comes home and discovers that the chore was still incomplete, and I could tell that she wasn’t mad she was just disappointed.  When she told me again, this time while I am awake, that she wanted me to shred some papers, I went over to the basket where all things to be shredded were.  In the basket I discover things like bank statements and receipts, but I also notice that there were some empty envelopes as well.  When I asked her about the empty envelopes she told me that she did want to throw out any thing with our address on it.  I started to remind her that our address is on the side of our house where almost any could find it, but I thought it would be best to keep this quiet. I didn’t her want to tell me, while I am asleep, to take the numbers off of our house

Written by rolandtrotter

May 16, 2013 at 7:06 pm

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The News

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I have been watching the Daily Show and The Colbert Report for on and off for many years.  My only complaint about these two shows is that they go on hiatus for a couple of weeks every couple of months.  I never know when the hiatus will end so I usually miss the first week that they are back on the air.  What make their hiatuses even more frustrating is that I get most of my news from the Daily Show and Colbert Report so when they aren’t running new episodes I can feel lost with on going stories that they are covering.

When they went on hiatus at the end of December Hillary Clinton was hospitalized with a blood clot and the economy was about to spiral out of control by going over the fiscal cliff.  Without the Daily Show and Colbert Report putting out new episodes at the time I’m not sure how Hillary Clinton or the economy survived.  Sometimes when the Daily Show and Colbert are off the air I will watch World News with Diane Sawyer, If Diane Sawyer would learn how to write punch lines, it would make life easier when the Daily Show and Colbert Report go on hiatus.

If I can’t get new news with a joke I will settle for old news with some drama.  I recently started watching the HBO series The Newsroom.  It’s a drama that takes place behind the scenes of a cable news show.  What’s inexplicable is how the drama of the show is so good that it makes me forget that I already know the out come of the news stories on the show, because they happened three years ago.  When the news team was covering the shooting of Congresswoman Gabby Gifford, they were scrambling to find the most recent and accurate information about her condition.  I was so caught up in the show and emotionally invested in the Congresswoman’s condition that I forgot that I already knew she was alive, as I had recently seen her at the President’s State of the Union speech.

I really hope that The Newsroom will last for a couple more seasons, so that I can find out in a couple of years whether Hillary Clinton was really sick or faking a blood cot to get out of senate questioning as Fox News reported. I have tried forcing myself to watch Nightline only to find out that I don’t care about investigating reporting.  I don’t watch the news to hear statics about human trafficking. I watch the news to find out what stupid thing Lindsey Graham said this week. 

Written by rolandtrotter

April 15, 2013 at 10:57 pm

Harry Potter Nostalgia

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Now that we are a few years removed from the last Harry Potter movie, I have become fully aware of how much I miss looking forward to a new Harry Potter movie every year.  I guess it gave me something to look forward to every fall, until the franchise got lumped in with the summer blockbusters. I even miss the weird nuances, the subtle things that could pass for mistakes or be taken as unrealistic even in a universe where magic is possible.

I miss Harry Potter’s wild-eyed look of amazement that he maintained every time something magical would happen, well into the fifth movie.  He always looked so surprised when someone would make a wall disappear and reveal a hidden passage or make something fly around the room.  I felt like he should have developed an expectation of magic a lot sooner.  I don’t mean to put myself on a pedestal but I figured out that there would be magic happening on a regular basis during the second movie.

The other thing that really came across as unrealistic in a movie about a magic school was the number of students at the school.  It looked like there were a thousand kids attending this school and only about ten teachers sitting at the teacher’s table in the cafeteria.  I don’t know how you can effectively learn magic with a one hundred to one student teacher ratio.  With so many kids going to school to learn magic I think it would flood the job market with too many magicians, and I don’t think that there are enough birthday parties and bar mitzvahs to go around.

I also never understood how learning magic factored into more practical aspects of life.  For instance if you wanted to write for a newspaper like The Daily Prophet would you need to attend Hogwarts for seven years then attend a university to study journalism?  Since The Daily Prophet has magic pictures what would be the price difference of that and a normal newspaper?  If you have to pay tuition of multiple schools and pay a premium on simple things like special newspapers you have to wonder if magic is worth the extra money.

The last thing I feel nostalgic about concerning the Harry Potter movies was how groups of Christians would always complain and protest about how magic was portrayed in the movies.  I found this offensive for a couple of reasons, first it’s as if they were saying that I don’t know the difference in fantasy and reality and second it is like they are saying Willow wasn’t worth protesting.

Written by rolandtrotter

March 15, 2013 at 8:24 pm

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Thoughts on Mr. Darcy

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I remember reading Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice in college in Eng 382, this novel was one of the few books really enjoyed in that class.  What was a little disappointing was how my comments and observations about the novel didn’t always go over so well in the class discussions. I thought I would share some of my thoughts on one of the novels main characters, Mr. Darcy.  I hope you enjoy my observations more than my former classmates.

One thing I don’t understand why everyone in the novel Pride and Prejudice reacts in an exclamatory fashion every time they see Mr. Darcy.  It’s as if no one ever expects to see him anywhere.  There is only about fifteen characters in the novel and ten of them are in the Bennet family, it would seem that at some point they would become aware of the possibility of occasionally running into Mr. Darcy.  Even Mr. Darcy’s friends and relatives exclaim when they see him, it’s as if no one has any expectation of ever seeing him.

Another thing that I found bothersome regarding Mr. Darcy is that he always seems to hold the Bennet family in contempt; yet he keeps hanging out with them and inviting them places.  I realize he is just trying to be a good wingman for Mr. Bingley, but a certain point he comes across as a glutton for punishment.  After Mr. Darcy accidently stole Mr. Bingley’s original love interest, it would seem that the two of them would both benefit from dissolving the wingman aspect of their friendship. This would allow Mr. Bingley to pick up a girl and give Mr. Darcy a chance to separate himself from people who annoy him.

Later in the novel Mr. Darcy out of a need to enforce his sense of propriety, travels across the country to ensure that Captain Wickham did the right thing and married Lydia, after they had sex.  By being a third party who ensured that the right thing was done by men looking to take advantage of young naive women, Mr. Darcy comes across as a front runner to Maury Povich.  It would be interesting to see what Mr. Darcy could have accomplished if DNA testing were around during Jane Austen’s lifetime.

Written by rolandtrotter

February 20, 2013 at 3:17 am

Reading Rainbow For Adults

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This year I have found myself reading more than I have in years past, to the point where I have actually bought a Barnes and Nobles membership card.  I use the membership as a sort of benchmark to show how much I have been reading, as in the past as I never thought I would spend two hundred and fifty dollars required to justify spending twenty-five dollars on the card; that would give you ten percent off all in store purchases.  I’m not really sure if the need to buy a Barnes and Nobles membership is the appropriate way to describe an avid reader but in my case I think it’s a fairly accurate way to quantify time-spent reading.

For the most part I read humor books and books about baseball, aside from a few graphic novels I really don’t read that much fiction.  Its not that I am opposed to reading fiction, its that I haven’t yet figured out what I like.  That’s why I wish there was a Reading Rainbow for adults, and LeVar Burton could come on give me suggestions on what I should read.  He could give me reviews on some books for adults, but insist that I not take his word for it.   

Because a Reading Rainbow for adults doesn’t exist I started asking my friends for suggestions on what book I should read next.  I suppose I was trying to turn my friends in to my own personal LeVar Burton, though this idea was kind of flawed as they didn’t always have suggestions and offered little in the way of educational shorts (its important to continue to learn).

When I asked my friend Giovanni for book suggestions he told me to try the Hunger Games.  I was a little skeptical at first as to whether of not I would like the Hunger Games, then I found out that the book’s author, Suzanne Collins, also wrote for Clarissa Explains It All, sense I was already familiar with her body of work I thought I would pick up the books.

I bought the entire trilogy in a leap of faith that I would like the books, and the gamble paid off, as the books were pretty good.  After I got into the series I finished all three books in only a couple of weeks.  At first I was very impressed with the pace that I was reading, and then I remembered that the Hunger Games books were written for teenagers, and it would be kind of sad if I weren’t reading them at a fast pace. 

Written by rolandtrotter

January 15, 2013 at 12:45 am

The Airing of Grievances

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The holiday’s are just around the corner and any good Sienfeld fan should know that Christmas is a harbinger for Festivus.  Festivus, the holiday founded by Frank Costanza, takes place the day after Christmas and begins with the Airing of Grievances.   The Airing of Grievances is where you let everyone know how they have hurt, wronged or disappointed you.  In keeping with the holiday spirit I want to quote Frank Costanza by saying “I got a lot of problems with you people and now your going to hear about it!” Now I would like to air some of my grievances for you.

The first grievance that I would like to talk about is Taylor Swift’s song ‘Love Story’.  In this song she makes references to both The Scarlet Letter and Romeo and Juliette, neither of which are love stories.  I’m not pointing this out to make fun of Taylor Swift’s intelligence or her knowledge of literature, because she is so pretty that her intelligence is a nonissue.  My main concern here is that girls who look up to Taylor Swift may start to think that The Scarlet Letter and Romeo and Juliette are love stories; and I think dating is hard enough without self mutilation and suicide being incorporated into romance.

My next grievance is with Hulu.  I remember Hulu used to only show a couple of commercials for each episode I watched.  Sometimes Hulu would forget to show commercials at all, or the advertisement wouldn’t work and Hulu give me an apology for the nonworking commercial.  Now every commercial break has a least three advertisements.   Not only am I forced to watch more commercials, but also I am forced to watch the same commercials, as Hulu seems to have only four advertisements for nine different advertisement slots (I did not fact check those numbers at all, it was a very rough estimate).  Hulu’s autoplay upsets me more than the commercials.  I find it extremely presumptuous that it thinks it knows what show I want to watch next.  What makes me so upset about Hulu’s autoplay is that it’s almost always right, and I think I’m more upset with myself for being so predictable.

Chick-fil-a upset me this year by introducing a new dessert menu. My grievance is not with the dessert menu as a whole, the cookies are delightful by the way, but replacing the old brownie with a new brownie that doesn’t have nuts.  I was told that this was done to accommodate those with nut allergies.  Rather than simply remove nuts from the recipe, Chick-fil-a came up with a new brownie recipe and altered the taste, and portion size of the brownie.  I was very passionate about the old brownie, so much so that I would eat the brownie before my Chick-fil-a sandwich to avoid filling up on nutrients avoiding the risk of not being able to finish the brownie.

My final grievance is with Fox sports who goes out of its way to ruin baseball every summer.  First by blacking out all the games that are on at the same time as it Saturday Game of The Week, in an attempt to monopolize the baseball ratings. By doing this I am not only unable to watch the teams I like but I’m forced to watch teams I hate.  Second thing that Fox does to ruin baseball is insist on showing countless replays of things that don’t affect the outcome of the game.  I don’t need to see three different camera angles of a breaking ball in an 0-2 count, this literally happens every game.  The third thing that Fox does to ruin baseball is have Tim McCarver and Joe Buck broadcast the games.  I’ve heard these two gossip about David Ortiz using performance enhancing drugs and Miguel Cabrera driving under the influence, but I’ve never heard Joe Buck call Ben Roethlisberger a rapist during when he is broadcasting NFL games

Written by rolandtrotter

December 15, 2012 at 9:33 pm

Kevin’s Wedding: Driving to Charlotte

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On Oct 23rd I left Killeen Texas at about 4:40am, to drive to Charlotte North Carolina for Kevin’s wedding. I had intended on leaving about an hour earlier but that was predicated on going to bed earlier and sense I had a lot of last minute things to do before going to bed.  Most of my last minute details that prevented me from getting to bed before 11:30 were packing, and downloading Taylor Swift and Jay-Z songs; so I could have some new music for the drive.  Its not as if I were procrastinating and constantly wasting time by going on facebook or mlb.com, I only went on those websites a few times.

The first few hours of the drive I was listening to my ipod on shuffle and was a little disappointed that I hadn’t heard any of the songs that I downloaded the night before. Which made me question why I spent so much time downloading music instead of going to sleep. Then I realized that the five hours it took to get out of Texas was only the beginning of the drive I would have plenty of time to hear “Tim McGraw and “Big Pimpin”. 

Around noon I started to think I could have really used a little Jay-Z in my life to keep me going, as the early afternoon was the hardest part of the drive.  The alignment on my truck was bad from the start but go a little worse as the trip went on, there were a couple of times when I would doze off and the bad alignment would instantaneously put me in another lane of traffic.  After going through this pattern about three to four times it seem like a good idea stop for gas and lunch.

When I got into Georgia a few hours later I called Kevin and told him I was planning on stopping in Atlanta to get some food, gas and walk around for a little while to stretch my legs and I let him know that he could expect my in Charlotte around 1:00am.  He called back a couple hours later to see if I was still on track or if I deviated from the plan. I would find out the intent of his call about twenty minutes later when I called him back. I kind of had to ignore his call because at the time he called my ipod was playing Wu-Tang Clan’s “Ain’t Nothing to Fuck with” sandwiched in between Taylor Swift’s “Mine” and “White Horse”; easily the highlight of the drive.

Originally I was thinking about finding something to eat in downtown Atlanta, but had second thought when I remembered the last time I was in Atlanta.  I was walking downtown by myself and a girl asked me if I wanted to go on a date, I told her it was kind of late and said no thank you.  She asked me a couple more times if I wanted to go on a date with her, and to each request I said no.  After the conversation was over I wondered if I was just solicited by a prostitute, as normally girls aren’t that adamant about going on dates with me.

Hoping to avoid persistent prostitutes I decided to not to eat downtown, I found a Zaxby’s outside of Atlanta to eat at instead.  Zaxby’s was a nice change of pace as my two previous meals that day were both fast food.  I ordered a salad and found a table to myself; I was halfway done with my meal when a family of three sat down at the table directly behind me.  I wasn’t trying to eavesdrop on the family’s conversation but I couldn’t help hear the little boy, who was wearing a baseball uniform, ask his dad which team he liked better: the team he played for or the Braves.  I admire the fact that the Dad gave a very honest answer when he told his son that he thought the Atlanta Braves were a better team because they were more experienced than his team.  Even when he realized the team his son played for last year had the braves for a mascot and he wanted to know if his current team was better than his previous team, his dad stood pat on his answer.

With no further delays I managed to make it to Kevin’s house at 1:00 am.  We talked for about half an hour before going to bed, and I think I slept until about 3:30 the next day.  I began to think that the little bit of money I saved by not flying wasn’t worth spending almost a full day of my life driving, and over half a day sleeping.

Written by rolandtrotter

November 21, 2012 at 2:28 am

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