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What a bummer of a day. I found a job today, finally. And I'm glad because I was sick of tirelessly filling out applications. Although I was secretly hoping that my summer job hunt would continue indefinitely, so that I could spend my summer loafing and fishing. The job I got, though, seems pretty good. I'm going to be working for a rental company, which rents out equipment to people for weddings and parties and that sort of stuff. I'm going to be doing a lot of delivery stuff. I actually had gone in and filled out an application at the place and followed up and called them about three times, but they said they didn't need anyone. But two weeks later I got a call from them saying they had a spot open. The guy I'm replacing is out of commission because he got a DWI citation. I don't really know how to feel about that. Also, my plants that I had planted a couple weeks ago were found by one of my neighbors and uprooted (damn the servants of the man). Incidentally, they were found by my neighbor who is a geologist and I am going to go into that field. I was hoping that he could hook me up with a job someday, but that hope is looking ever-grimmer. Whatever, it's just a plant, and I don't agree in the least with its out-dated prohibition. After all, laws don't rule me; morals do. None can justify consciously trying to put a plant, and a very versatile and amazing species, out of existence. We all hate poison ivy, but I don't see any federal agents trying to get rid of that plant. I wasn't really even growing it to smoke it or sell it; I just wanted to let it grow and let it flourish. I recently bogarted a copy of Steal This Book from my roommate, which I feel kind of bad about, but I think he swiped my Hot Tuna cd so it evens out, which is a bummer because it's a really slick disc and I just realized today that I didn't have it. Run on sentence. But about run on sentences, I say we should start destroying the language of our fathers and start manipulating it and using run-on sentences and using words in unorthodox places and ending sentences with prepositions. I'm not talking about a new language per se; I'm talking about psuedo-harlem renaissance here. I'm talking about scaring the old folks by talking in jive. Keepin' 'em on dey toes, dig? I'm also realizing today that I've been disillusioned for much of my life, and perhaps sheer proof of that comes from the fact that I have no idea if the things I think or the way I think about things makes any sense in the "real world". For example, if I'm driving, sometimes I'll be just amazed about how I'm on a winding road that is just cutting through a forest, and there are these trees all around me. I don't know if my amazement and other peoples apparent lack of amazement is simply due to the fact that I missed something growing up about us living amoung trees and that being normal, or that every one else is just blindly living. Clearly, my mind is chaotic. Or is it? I don't really know, because I've never experienced another persons thoughts in their purest form. Most thoughts are inarticuable; and the ones that can be expressed and understood can only be understood when the "hearer" has been through a similar experience. I mean, I've heard of love, read about it, been told about it, but I don't know what it is. That's today's two cents. Hopefully June winds will blow kindly upon us all.
I sent this letter to the Washington Post today:

To the Editors:
I cannot believe that you are simply sitting there and taking the flimsy excuses the administration is giving out about the lies that were told to the American people to drag this nation into war. Two empty trailers do not an effort make, and to offer these as evidence in support of a war that will change our lives and future is so disingenuous that I am surprised that you can report it with a straight face.

This sad event only demonstrates to me the bankruptcy of American journalism. You people should be ashamed of yourselves. Why aren't you asking the hard questions?

Clinton lied about a blowjob, and the media spent millions of dollars and hundreds of man-hours to investigate. Bush and his cronies fabricated a terror scenario out of whole cloth and plunged us into war, and you just give him a pass. I am sickened by your lack of spine.
-message ends.

Unfortunately, I am not surprised that the media is rolling over on this issue. The consolidation of our media and the dumbing-down of the American public has been going on for some time now, with McNews and celebrity gossip taking the place of real information. Our administration is going to get a pass on this because the public has been trained to forget everything that happened more than 15 minutes ago.

It will get worse once the FCC relaxes the rules yet again. Soon it will be impossible to get a second viewpoint of the issues, because there won't be an independent press anymore.

History almost repeating itself

Sometime ago I posted a tale under the title The hidden dangers of mobile phone use that recounted the tragic death toll that arose as a result of attempts to retrieve a dropped mobile phone from a Kenyan latrine.

You would have thought that such a tale would have been sufficent warning to convince people to a) be more careful with their damned phones and b) not to try and fish them out from the dark

But no, some people will never learn, as in the case of Kevin McKeon, aged 25, from the town of Taunton in Somerset, England who was walking home after a night out at a local public house on the evening of Tuesday the 27th May when, that's right, he dropped his phone and it fell down the drain.

So what did he do? Go home and contact the local water board or the fire brigade? Write it off as bad luck and get another phone? No, he lifted up the grate of the drain, knelt down and lent into the drain in order to retrive his precious mobile phone.

Then we have someone named as Brian Wilkinson, aged 65, (newspapers always tells us how old peple are for some reason) driving down the road at around 11pm, who saw a pair of legs sticking out of a drain, and stopped to investigate. (Well you would wouldn't you, its not something you see every day.)

What he found was of course, one dead Kevin McKeon who had slipped head first into the drain and drowned.

His mother Carol was later quoted as saying;

"It was a nice mobile phone and I suppose he was just trying to get it back. He was a beautiful child, he had everything to live for. As a child, I taught him to beware of drains."

For some reason I find that hilariously funny. I must be a very sick person indeed.

Verify the truth of the tale at
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,3604,967572,00.html
http://www.dailytelegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2003/05/31/ndrain31.xml&sSheet=/news/2003/05/31/ixhome.html

The cultural difference was deemed too great by the ownership, so after nearly two years, a manager was installed at the secondhand shop where I work. Part of the gap between the store and the owners is generational, and another part is the (hippie generation) ownership's tendency to take things too seriously; so their choice of a young and sardonic representative seems honorable to me.

Still, after working so long with relative freedom, it's a little uncomfortable to me to receive direct orders, as opposed to written down instructions that I feel I have the leeway to follow or not, as the needs of the store dictate. And although more decisions can be made on the spot, rather than going to what amounts to a board of directors, a frustrating number still can not. To some degree, I'm sure I have to fess up that it's come to this partly because I haven't used my long leash as wisely as I could.

We put up for sale today a left-handed Jesus. I don't know if that seems odd, but it certainly seems to have a touch of the occult to me. I got books from a retiring psychologist moving to Florida, and transferred the bulk portion of them to a young psychology student at prices well below normal - because it was the proper and more rewarding thing to do with the merchandise. And I finished going through my recently departed friend's books on Scotland, DIY law, Christian counseling, the Marines, computers, music, biofeedback, self-hypnosis, Christian history, pagan history, spell books, prayer books and borderline pornography. Selling them, and speaking to each buyer about the man, is the way I intend to honor his memory.

Well it's been suggested that this idea has no place on E2 and "will likely be downvoted into oblivion in a matter of minutes" - that's sad. Maybe it's not a good idea, but I feel it is and would like to share it and take the risk because I believe people can make a difference, maybe I can't but maybe someone reading this can. Sorry in advance if it really is a dumb idea and doesn't belong here - I feel the need to post it.

Undoubtedly I"m not the first person to think of this, but since I have yet to read about it or hear about it - I'd like to put it out there for others. Perhaps it will inspire someone to put this into action?

The idea is playing cards with the pictures of missing children, like the children currently pictured on milk cartons in the USA. Like the Iraqi most wanted playing cards. Many of us don't buy our milk in cartons, so this useful resource does not hit many of us. A lot of us do play cards, so it'd be another avenue to get the pictures out, and those children seen.

I think it'd be great to find a card company - perhaps one that makes the cards for Las Vegas in the 10's of thousands a year - and ask then to create the cards at cost, or near cost. It's a very worthwhile cause.

We can currently buy decks of cards as cheap as 2 for 1.00 - so if they are sold at cost, or near cost the decks would be even cheaper.

I suppose a drawback would be not wanting to think about missing children while trying to have fun playing cards, but I think after the first few times of using them even the most compassionate of us may be willing to accept the little pangs of negativity - for the one child who may be reunited with their family because of these cards.

The reason we recognize certain celebs is because we see them alot and we'd recognize them even if they changed appearance a little. I think the subconsious glances at these children as we play could bring an instant recognition of them if we were to run into them on the street.

I'd also like to consider running this idea by a casino in Vegas, what if during the Missing and Exploited Children's week - they played with these cards. The decks are only used once, and then sold to the stores. That's how they are sold so cheaply. It'd be mentioned on the news no doubt, and bring tons of goodwill advertising for that casino. If the idea worked, they could do this yearly - with a new set of children on the decks each year.

I suppose a drawback to this idea, as with milk cartons, is that there are thousands of missing children and only 52 cards in a deck. I imagine the card producers wouldn't be willing to produce more than a half dozen different versions of this deck, that's only 312 children. Not alot, but still that's 312 children with a better chance of coming back home. How to determine which of the thousands to feature on the cards would be tough, I suppose they could use the same method they now use for the milk cartons.

Not entirely sure how to put this idea into action, the only ideas I have on that would be to contact those who printed the Iraqi playing cards and see if they would be interested in this (they've been in the news a lot so contact info should be out there...). Or to contact the Center for Missing and Exploited Children and see if they have the resources to get this ball rolling? Maybe calling the phone # on those milk cartons would be a good starting point.

I have no idea if these "Play for the Children" cards would bring home one child, but I do know if it were my child missing - or the child of a friend of mine - it'd be worth the attempt without a doubt. Honestly, if I thought me playing with these cards helped bring home any child, I'd play with them.

Please /msg me for any suggestions for this. Thanks.
And in other news:

Since I love doyle's daylog and would enjoy reading more like it. I thought I'd write my own here adding to this list as I remember all my goals and perhaps make new ones.

Things still to do in this lifetime

1) Take a Z shaped trip across America from Washington State to New York, from New York to California, from California to Florida and then (messing up my Z!) from Florida diagonally back up to Washington. Seeing most of the natural wonders and important sites in the US in the process.

2) Learn some advanced math

3) Get a degree (I would have had 3 of them - had I not refused to take math classes in college)

4) Learn another language

5) Learn American sign language

6) Buy a little house on the bank of a creek - so I can spend my later years listening to the creek and reading.

7) Learn to swim

8) Write a book - yes I know I'd need an army of editors :)

9) Start another company (a work 3 months, take 3 months off, work 3 months take 3 off, type of deal)

10) Find one of my sisters (given up for adoption at age 4)

11) Become a real computer programmer - Delphi or VB

12) To learn the concept of relaxing and be able to actually relax.

Once Upon A Time…
(aka The Toast)

Once upon a time there lived a lovely princess named Jennifer. Only everyone called her Jen. Except for friends in high school who called her "Fu" and her adorable sister who called her "Fufy".

Jen was a fun-loving, silly, hungry, cute, adventurous young princess who loved life. She was often seen hiking in the woods, exercising at the local Gold's Gym, eating burritos with her numerous girlfriends, laughing uncontrollably at America's Funniest Home Videos, or dancing wildly at the Wildcat. Yet, there was something missing.

Jen had a hole in her heart. She knew as a princess that there was supposed to be a dashing young prince in the picture, but they were hard to come by. Most were too tall, too young, and just down-right silly. She ached to find her prince, the one that would one day sweep her off her feet and into the sunset of love. How to find the man – ahem – I mean, prince of her dreams? She knew she needed to ask the help of one special person – the one who loved her like a sister…

In fact, it was her sister! Princess Jen decided to seek the company and counsel of her beautiful sister, Princess Andrea. (Princess Andrea was also looking for her own prince at the time, but that's another story!) Princess Andrea readily accepted Princess Jen's company and knew of the perfect place for them to both find their "Dream Prince". As they approached the young princes performing skate tricks on the handrails at San Marcos High School, Princess Jen wondered, "Can this truly be the place my dear, sweet sister intended for us to find my true love? I can only trust in the stars above…

And the stars did answer; for off in the distance, behind the lush, green trees, in front of the cold stone walls, there she saw him.

He was tough to notice as he moved gracefully behind the video camera taping every jump of his team. And yet, Princess Jen saw the one she knew to be hers forever. With a smile, a laugh, and a Slurpee, both Prince Isaac and Princess Jen walked into the sunset, hand in hand.

Times weren't always easy, though. Prince Isaac and Princess Jen had their hard times, their times of strife, no doubt. Separation and contemplation were their true solace for many months. With time, though, their broken hearts mended and all was made right again. Left-handed golf games resumed and yummy dinners of lobster-stuffed steak and garlic bread were made. They were never to part again, only to live and love forever. Just like a fairy tale. Just like a dream come true. Just like today.

Dedicated to Isaac Oltmans and Jen Oltmans neé Fuson
By Andrea Lauderdale neé Fuson
Shared here with their permissions

A touching wedding ceremony at Alice Keck Park Park followed immediately by a reception at Tucker's Grove saw the above read aloud to the glowing bride and her new husband by her loving sister.

Congratulations, Jen!

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