I'm Getting Too Old For This

There really are few ways around it. It happens to everyone no matter how much it seems like it won't. I am becoming old. Not just in age mind you, I am not going to insinuate that the fact that I am turning 29 tomorrow is what I am fully blaming for this transformation, it's not. No I am getting old in mind, and body as well as the age factor. To put it bluntly: while I only look like this

I feel more like this:

I just feel ancient and old. All my friends are younger than me, and when you look at their faces you actually do see some sort of weird glow about them where they have so much to look forward to and they are just annoyingly happy about it. Meanwhile a lot of my good years are behind me. I have accepted my fate and while I have been able to find peace and joy within those confines I still don't feel the same way I did when I was 24. I know that glow isn't really there for me anymore. I still have so much to look forward to but instead of seeing it as something I have ahead of me I have reached the moments when I start to wonder if I missed something along the way.

And constantly looking into your past for something that wasn't ever there is pointless. You can't go back for it, even if you realize that one moment where if you had taken a left instead of a right your life would have been on the track you think you want. You still can't make that turn. It's done. You can't fix it. And so with that in mind I am going to turn my mind from the past, and look forward to the future. And hopefully I will find this again.


An addendum to my Lost post

So as it stands I was pretty mean and laid it on really thick to some people I hold dear to me in my life. they didn't deserve it no matter how frustrated I was with the things they did. So to make amends I offer this little post, in Alphabetical order -

Aimee - I love that you call me out on my crap even when I am joking and you don't realize it. I love that you are always willing to go out of your way to make people happy even if it means spending all day in the kitchen slaving over treats people will take from granted.

Derek - You truly are one of my best friends and I love spending time with you. I love when you make me laugh and I love that you are always willing to hang out with me. Sorry I fell asleep watching Golden Eye last night.

Erin - I love your infectious smile and your genuine laugh. You are a simply an amazing person who always brings an air of wonderfulness to the room.

Imri - I admire your sense of style and your compassion for your fellow man. I always appreciate the few moments that I do get to spend with you because you always find a new way to surprise me.

Joe Pete - I honestly don't know you so here's a nice thing about you, I really like your goatee.

Kaylene - Your bubbly and happy attitude is one in a million and I can't imagine a world without it. Your drive to make those around you happy does not go unnoticed or unappreciated. I'm sorry I snapped at you when you got up to spit out your gum.

Mark - You are one of the most caring people I know despite often acting like the most selfish person I know. You will go out of your way to help in any way you can when you see a friend in danger and you also have a way of making everyone's hardships funny and livable.

Troy - Your personality fills a room and your lack of a care in the world (at least to the outside eye) is always something I will strive to copy and achieve in my own life.

This post wasn't done just to suck up to those who I could have offended with my words, but rather it's goal was to show that even through all my frustrations with the way things go I still appreciate and cherish the time spent with my friends. Thank you for putting up with me.

The Square Root of 3 by David Feinberg

I fear that I will always be
a lonely number like root 3
a 3 is all that's good and right
why must my 3 keep out of sight
beneath a vicious square root sign
I wish instead I were a 9
for 9 could thwart this evil trick
with just some quick arithmetic
I know I'll never see the sun
as 1.7321
such is my reality
a sad irrationality
when hark! what is this I see
another square root of a 3
has quietly come waltzing by
together now we multiply
to form a number we prefer
rejoicing as an integer
we break free from our mortal bonds
and with a wave of magic wands
our square root signs become unglued
and love for me has been renewed.

When Allen Met Lost

So here's the thing, I had never watched a single episode of Lost until this season. I heard it was touch and go drama full of random acts of randomness that served no purpose except to leave the viewer screaming WTF loud enough to wake their neighbors crammed into a single hour every Wednesday. I have no time for a second show like that. I already watch Heroes, a show I find vastly superior. However I was still invited to a Lost party for the premiere.

I replied that I don't watch the show but thanks for the invite. Then of course I wound up with the time off from work and nothing better to do. I love social gatherings and I figured why not it's just one episode and I will get to support my friend Aimee whom I love dearly. It couldn't possibly be that bad. Besides the way mark talks about it makes it feel like it's the second coming of Christ in TV form so maybe it actually is pretty good.

Turns out my hatred for it was justified. It was confusing, confounded, full of unnecessary scenes and action. Nothing made sense. And I know anyone who is a fan of the show will chime in with "THAT'S BECAUSE YOU STARTED IN THE MIDDLE OF THE SEASON! YOU HAVE TO WATCH IT FROM THE BEGINNING!" but here's the thing - this isn't a movie. It's a TV show. If I sit down and watch the aforementioned Heroes, true for my first episode I might be a little disjointed but you will still have a general feeling for what is going on, and I honestly feel that after a couple episodes in the current story arch you will get it without needing to go back through the entire series. And that is how it should be. Every week you want new viewers. People who didn't watch the week before, or the year before. that's how you judge a show's popularity. However Mr. Abrams missed that note and decided none of that mattered and as a quick way to sell DVD box sets he was going to make it as confusing and unexplained as possible so new viewers will need to buy the box sets thinking they will understand something but the truth is they won't because the show has ALWAYS been a disorganized mess.

And so with that I decided that I didn't like the show. However I still liked my friends that would gather together somewhere to watch so I continued to watch. And every single week I was just as lost as the last week. I often joked that it was just for Aimee's cupcakes but it was the people and happiness that they felt while watching it. The cupcakes, while always delicious meant less than nothing to me. I also have always gotten a kick out of watching girls jump and scream when something completely obviously startling is about to happen, it makes me laugh. I was often asked why I still watched it when I still actively campaigned against it and talked about how annoying I thought it was. This paragraph is your answer.

And then last night happened.

I think I finally started to figure out the show and vaguely tolerate it. I mean I am still not going to "catch up" on the show and watch everything from beginning but it is an interesting allegory about good vs evil and the plight of man when looking for answers about his own mortality.

However people watching became annoying. My friends went from fun and quirky about this show to quite honestly heartless banshees. I have zero problem starting a little late thanks to DVR, but apparently everyone in that room, despite others coming late were chomping at the bit and completely inconsiderate to the people who were late. I understand wanting to watch the show but the stupid thing will still be there if we start it now or 3 weeks from now. I had no real intention of watching the show. I would sit there and watch their reactions just like I always do when i watch with them. However due to my roommate Mark's inability to understand the concept of a remote control or the fast forward and play buttons on said remote control (the one that works EXACTLY like a VCR or DVD player) I had to watch intently and of course fast forward through all the commercials. And heaven help me if I couldn't get the remote to work because someone's head was in the way and I went forward into the actual show. Audible gasps and chants of "stop it Allen you went too far!" were heard echoing through our living room. The thing also goes backwards people. I am not a trained monkey who's job it is to fast forward through the commercials so you don't have to watch them. No I'm a real person who knows how a remote control works (which apparently makes me smarter than someone with a finance degree from the University of Washington's Business School) so perhaps you people need to lay off and let me do the thing none of you could/were willing to do.

Oh and let's not forget the ever nervous and twitchy Mark Johnson for second guessing me when I said I fixed our cable so the HD channels work just fine and that the ENTIRE reason I did it so urgently earlier this week was because I wanted to have people over for Lost. He did this at least 4 times. "did you record it?" "well which channel are you recording?" "so 104 is working now?" "are you sure?". Nothing bothers me more than when people are A. unappreciative of the things I do for them, and B. second guess my abilities, especially those when it comes to setting up electronic devices.

Anyway it's the end of the night and it's time to go home. How many thanks did I get for inviting people over? I will go with 2, Erin is usually good for a considerate thanks and Troy was also good about it. How many thanks did I get for operating the oh so complicated remote? None. How many thanks did I get for recording it so people could be late? Only those people that were late, because the others were too busy complaining about the fact that they had to be patient never mind that they still reaped the benefits of the late party by missing the commercials.

I know I shouldn't hold it against them, they were excited. And yet I still can't help but be disappointed by their behavior. I'll get over it, I always do (and in the interest of full disclosure I already pretty much am thanks to writing this blog).

And yet part of me is wishing for another writers strike so they have to have another season postponed. That'll teach 'em.


What the EF?

I watched a lot of movies recently so I could catch up. Here are the E's and F's of my collection.

In alphabetical order- E.T. The Extra Terrestrial, Emmet Otter's Jugband Christmas, Eragon, The Family Man, The Fast And The Furious, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, The Fifth Element, Forgetting Sarah Marshall

Best Movie: Ferris Bueller's Day Off. I absolutely love this movie and one day hope to recreate it in my every day life.

Worst Movie: Eragon. Okay there were so many things they could have done with this to make it good and the cast was there but instead it fell flat and came across cheesy. How do you screw up Jeremy Irons and John Malcovich in the same movie? HOW?

Favorite Movie: The Fifth Element. It's a beautiful message and a wonderful story, combined with some of the most breathtaking visuals ever done in a movie either before or after it. Timeless.

Most Surprisingly Good Movie: The Family Man. It stars Nicolas Cage and yet it didn't suck. I know that's hard to believe based on his recent track record but no he actually is good in this.

Most Surprisingly Bad Movie: Emmet Otter's Jugband Christmas. I am chalking this one up as simply being out of season for watching it because I know around Christmas time I absolutely love the Gift of The Magi acted out with muppets.

Most Surprising Movie I Don't Own: The Exorcist. The absolute perfect scary movie. I have already praised my love for this movie enough early on in my blog so I won't again but that is more the reason why I am surprised I don't own it.

Why In The HECK Do I Own: Honestly I know why I own every single movie on there and I am not embarrassed by any of them, yes even Emmet Otter.

And with that I am all caught up with my blog updates for my resolution. Next up, G and H. Wish me luck there's a lot of bad out there with those ones.

I can't think of a clever title for my D movies

I have a lot of catching up to do with my resolution and I am actually surprised how long this has taken me. It has become increasingly easier for me to just watch my Netflix movies instead of my own movies when I come to a movie I really don't want to watch. I also had my first scare of this whole thing when I got to Die Hard 2 the disc was missing. Turns out whoever borrowed it from me last forgot to put the movie back in the case. Thankfully Netflix was there to save the day.

In alphabetical order- The Dark Knight, Death At a Funeral, Definitely, Maybe, Deja Vu, Delirious, Die Hard, Die Hard 2 Die Harder, Die Hard With a Vengeance, Live Free or Die Hard (Note: I put this one in as Die Hard 4 because I hate the Title Live Free or Die Hard), Dirty Dancing, Dirty Love

Best Movie: With so many good movies to choose from I am going to have to go with The Dark Knight as the best movie. It is simply a wonderful dark and twisted movie that proves that comic book movies don't have to play nice.

Worst Movie: There are a few movies in there that are extra horrible but I think for worst movie I will have to pick on Deja Vu. There were too many plot holes filled in with gibberish and way too many characters saying or doing something very, very stupid in it. And it just got under my skin.

Favorite Movie: This is an easy one for me: Dirty Dancing. I have a lot of fun and wonderful memories of this movie growing up. I was continually tortured to the soundtrack when I was growing up but it is through those memories I will always have fond memories of this movie. (if I am taking nostalgia out of the equation the actual answer to best movie is Definitely, Maybe)

Most Surprisingly Good Movie: Delirious. Now I am a huge fan of stand up comedy which has already been discussed and this is a classic Eddie Murphy stand up movie. However I wasn't quite sure how well it would stand the test of time. Would the things he talked about still be relevant to today? And would it still be funny? The answer was for the most part yes. I was slightly put off by his blatant homophobia that he opens the show with but then I remembered it was the 80's and that's just how things were.

Most Surprisingly Bad Movie: Death at a Funeral. This movie had a lot of hype thrown at it from friends but in the end I just didn't get a lot of it. Maybe I just hate British humour. I did enjoy bits and pieces of it but not enough to warrant watching again.

Most Surprising Movie I Don't Own: Dogma. With my obsession with Kevin Smith and his movies one would think I would own them all. Apparently I don't, which is a shame because Dogma is quite good.

Why In The HECK Do I Own: Dirty Love?????? This movie was atrocious on all levels. The writing was weak, the jokes fell flat, the love story had no structure. I had no feeling for the characters that is required to make a romantic comedy work. And yet I own this movie. I have a feeling the fact that I once thought Jenny McCarthy was one of the hottest women on the planet played a pivotal role in me purchasing this horrible, horrible film.

So far I think I would call D my favorite of this movie watching journey, the good were really good and the bad weren't really that horrible with the exception of Dirty Love, and I will forgive them that one horrible movie for the sake of the rest.


My Four Moms

I had an entirely different blog written for today but I realized that this would be a little more timely and important to talk about.

I have four mothers.

No my family isn't polygamists despite the Mormon Myth. I was birthed by one woman but throughout my life I have been raised by many and I love all of them as my mother, and they have treated me as if I was their son. On this day devoted to mothers I want to devote this blog post to them.

Mother #1 - Sandra Brand

This one is the easy one to explain why she's mom to me - she birthed me, but as I have learned in the past it takes more than birthing to make someone a mother and this woman has earned that title tenfold. She has inspired me to follow my heart and given me a role model for strength and is the personification of every virtue I could ever dream of becoming. As a single mother she very easily could have given up and accepted her fate but instead she persevered and pushed through all of her trials to raise the man who I have become. All I have done and wish to become is a testament to her. I love you Mom.

Mother #2 - Catherine Brand *photo not included because I can't find a good one but trust me she's beautiful*

Another easy one to explain why she is mom to me - She married my dad. She has done absolutely everything in her power to endear herself to me and help me in every possible way. I have no doubt that she played a main part in me moving up to Seattle. She tolerated living with me for over a year and a half. Trust me that's a big deal ask my roommates. In these years that she has been married to my father I have grown to love her as a mother, not just because of the things she does for me (of which there are many) but because of the perspective she has given me as a strong minded individual who never accepts no as a response. Always questioning, always learning. Constantly questing for answers to allow her to understand what is going on around her and absolutely wanting to help others with all that they need.

Mother #3 - Lynette Young
Ah my extended family. The closest thing I had to brothers and sisters would be the Young's. They were the friends that my mom trusted unequivocally to take care of me. Lynnette started out for me as my Den mother in scouts back when I actually enjoyed scouts. She taught me so many lessons and did such a wonderful job as a positive influence in my life especially when it could have been lost to the dark side. There was a time when this was my family. Fourth grade was difficult to me as I spent most of it in foster care. This wonderful family rescued me from a horrible, horrible foster home and took me in and showed me love. I lived with them for about 6 months and I truly grew to love them. I still remember my birthday from that year if for no other reason than my best friend Shawn ruined my presents and got in a lot of trouble with Lynnette for doing so. He never ever told me another gift I was given ever again. I know that even to this day I could turn to them if I ever needed something or just wanted to talk. Oh how I love them, all of them.

Mother #4 - Anita Farrell

Once I moved out on my own I found myself in Pasco and honestly that was the best possible thing that could have happened to me. I grew so much in my time in Pasco and I owe a great deal of that growth to Anita and Pres Farrell. I wasn't the most active member before I moved to Pasco, but I made a decision that once I moved there that it was time for a fresh start and so I decided to start going to church regularly. Pres was my branch president and was highly active in talking and meeting with members of the branch. I met with him every single week for a year, not because I was doing something wrong or working through some sin but because he cared. It is because of him I am an elder. It is because of him I have my patriarchal blessing. It is because of him I am endowed. Now Anita was always a doll. She spoke her mind and pulled no punches. In an effort to allow me to save money and to just keep me out of trouble no doubt they would let me come over to their house and do laundry every single week. I would come over every Wednesday with laundry ready to go, help Pres watch their grand kids during the day. Often they would feed me and generally take care of me in a time when I most needed it.

In a world where a lot of people aren't lucky enough to have one mother I have been blessed to have four of the best possible women fill that role. And so this Mother's day I wanted to take the time to say two things I don't know if I said it enough to properly show how much these women mean to me.

Thank you and I love you.