Thursday, July 30, 2009

Two Things That Annoy Me Right Now

There I go again, letting my blog gather dust. I promised people fun posts about all my fun summer adventures, yet I left you with nothing. You should know that I have had some fun summer adventures including an impromptu Fourth of July camping trip that involved a life threatening experience. Well, I'm being a bit dramatic, but seriously still a funny story (not at the time), you should ask me about it because I am not going to write about it for reasons.

Well, I still plan on getting my Cleveland notebook in, but, that's probably about it for the past events. So for now, let me just say a couple things that annoy me.

Bud Light's Slogan - Drinkability, what the hell is that? You know what gives it drinkability? The fact that it is liquid and can people can drink liquids. Bleach is drinkable, you don't see them advertising that!

Wedding Party Ceremony Dance - I'm not even going to post the video because it annoys me so damn much. All I envision is a bunch of bitches and douchebags. Save that shit for the reception, not the ceremony. I'm sure Grandma was looking forward to her beautiful grandaughter walking down the aisle in a lovely church setting. I have long been saying that the world doesn't break out in song and dance nearly enough, so why my hatred for it? I don't know, just disrespectful and frankly, retarded. My guess is they weren't even drunk.......which makes it even worse.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Where you at?

Hey, didn't you go to Cleveland? I want to read about it!

Yeah yeah, back off, I'm busy doing mostly unimportant things

Soon enough kids

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Quick Thoughts

- I seriously need to stop thinking of good blog ideas while laying in bed. I come up with one, but then I forget it the next morning after promising myself I wouldn't forget. I should keep a pen and paper nearby me....Or, it could be a thought you think is good, but really isn't (see Seinfeld Season two - The Heart Attack)

- Though I will forever maintain that I hate Twitter. I found a cool application for Twitter for the blackberry: UberTwitter. If you look at my posts it will give you a map of my GPS coordinate at the time of my posting. If there is a picture, you will see both the picture and where I was. Pretty neat!

- Speaking of GPS locations, I love Google Latitude.

- I'm really glad Jorge Julio is off of the Brewers.

- Conan O'Brien's first "The Tonight Show" was hilarious. Monologue seemed lacking, but the overall show was still fantastic. Also, good to see Andy Richter back...hopefully he won't seem as stiff going forward as he seemed that first show.

- If does eat oats, and goats eat oats, and little lambs eat ivy....what do three toed sloths eat?

- I'm going to Cleveland next weekend for a bachelor party, why Cleveland?....why not Cleveland

- What is Ned Yost doing these days? My guess is drinking lots of beer and throwing things at the TV when the Brewers win....also, I'm guessing he hasn't shaved since September.

- I think a cool, yet lame thing to say on Monday is: - "I'm making like Garfield and hating on Mondays"

- Really hope it is nice this Friday, I want to see Pat McCurdy @ Riversplash

- Sheffield's House - Your source for WI sports news and tidbits is now twittering

- What's it say about France when two of their most famous leaders in battle were 1) a teenage girl and 2) A short man with an inferiority complex

- I am working on the next part of my collegiate story. Some names should be dropped for those wondering where they will fall into the picture.

- Is it wrong to have said "Jesus was an alcoholic"? I mean, he lived in a rather arid country, and had a bunch of water, a hard thing to come by I am sure. Well, instead of giving people this nourishing, life sustaining water, he ruins it by turning it to wine, assumingly to have a shindig of biblical proportions.

- So, Mike has already made the comment about having another Carnival at his new house....I will keep mentioning this until it happens!

- I am awaiting for details on the new Scavenger Drunk - v.MKE, maybe the fella at Tepid Epics will have some answers soon.

- I finally, after a horrid start, have a winning record on my Brewer games attended 5-4. If you were counting, my cheese fries eaten to games won while attended ratio is now 3:5


Thursday, May 21, 2009

Ramblings - Memories, Summer, and a Touch of Patriotism

With Memorial Day Weekend upcoming, I've been getting in a better and better mood. The unofficial start of summer is upon us, and that makes me extremely happy. I always joke that I live in the wrong state because I hate winter, nothing about it makes me happy anymore. I will fully admit that I think every kid should grow up in a state that has bountiful snowfall. There is nothing more fun than bundling up, meeting your friends at the biggest hill you can find, and sledding all day, getting into snowball fights, and building snow forts. In fact, winter created some of my fondest recess memories.

First there was playing tackle football in the snow. Tackle football was not allowed, but, we would always play until we got yelled at, play touch for a while, then go back to tackle. I remember in about 6 inches of snow having my boot pulled off, then running the entire distance of the field scoring a touchdown and in turn getting one wet sock which made for an uncomfortable rest of the day.

Then there was the sledding, who could go the fastest, the farthest, stand up the longest, etc...I thank god that I grew up in the hilly part of the state (The Driftless Area), for hills were aplenty.

We always would tunnel the parking lot snow pile. Why, I don't know, but it was fun. Though seems kind of dangerous now as us elementary kids were no engineers, and I suppose a collapse was always possible.

Then, there were the snow forts. In 2nd grade, we wanted to make the biggest snow fort possible, we would spend all recess hour rolling one or two balls to make up the wall, it would take 3 or 4 of us to eventually roll the behemoth into place. After a week or so, we had our gigantic snow fort. It was, of course, boys only. Then a classmate, Megan, claimed she was kicked out of the girl's fort and wanted in to ours. Well, just as grown men are, even 2nd grade boys are susceptible to 'women tricks'. We trusted her, gave her the secret password, she played along for a day or two, but then told all the other girls what the password was. Before long, all the girls knew the password and then we had to attack to defend our turf with a good old fashioned snow ball fight.

BUT, that was the past. These days, I would rather not deal with the cold. I can have fun still, sure, but would much rather be out on a lake drinking a brewski or two. In fact, chillin' with nature on a hot summer day is definitely one of my favorite things to do.

I am doing a lot of fun stuff this summer. Going to Cleveland and Denver, many Brewer games...but what I am most looking forward to is heading up north camping in July. Last year we got a little wet, so this year, we went with a cabin right off of a lake in Eagle River. Should be a blast. To me, sitting around a campfire at night, telling stories with your friends under the stars and over drinks is pretty much heaven.

Speaking of sitting on lakes and nature, I just realized it has been a long time since I have seen the ocean. At my old job, I was at least once a month sitting on a beach watching the waves. This sort of saddens me as it was always a relaxing experience. In fact, the last time I saw the ocean was last summer in Maine....and with no ocean trips planned this year, likely won't be until next year...sad face.

To finish this rambling, I just want to say that while we often in this country bicker about things such as politics, we are all striving for the same things. While though it might seem we are divided on how we want to obtain what we all want to achieve, we always come together, be it for a time of crisis or just to share a laugh during a barbecue on Memorial Day....this ability to come together is certainly, uniquely, American. Now, as I was driving to work today, a song I have been listening to a lot lately came on my iPod, and since I was taking in the sights and smells of the back roads with the now green scenery, I literally had a big smile, filled to the brim with patriotism, the video is posted below, and while it is a country song, it fits this Great Nation, especially for an upcoming Memorial Day Holiday. So I want to leave you with this thought...please, while celebrating your holiday, be it barbecuing, tailgating, camping, or just relaxing at home...take a second to think of the purpose of Memorial Day, to honor those who have fallen, past and present, to help defend this Nation, so we can have the freedom to enjoy the activities that we choose to do in our lives.

Friday, May 15, 2009

#6. My Collegiate Life - Learning how to Party WW Style

After the initial excitement of the first week of class and the meeting of new friends, I began to settle down into a bit of a routine. It is amazing how even after one or two weeks, you feel comfortable and it was as if you have been living the collegiate life for years. As mentioned, I can not tell you where the first party was I attended, how crazy things may or may not have gotten. I can tell you though, that the first few weeks, getting to a party was always an adventure.

Come "Thirsty Thursday", right after dinner time, the dorms would begin to buzz. We would all go door to door down our hall to see where the party was. We didn't know the hot spots or have the connections yet. There were always the open invitations by the frat guys who would come wandering the halls letting everyone know they were having a free party with strippers, or some other gimmick, but for most of the guys I hung out with including myself, the frat life was something none of us were interested in, and didn't even want to associate with. Paying for friends, bah! Though I appreciated the Vegas style magnet for my fridge.

There always seemed to be one guy though who claimed to know where the parties were; he lived in the room directly next to me, name was Steve. Steve lived with Chad and they had went to Marquette High School together. They both were extremely outgoing and liked to have a good time, so him saying he knew where there was a party was good enough for us as we were desperate for the cheap tap beer and the women who would drink too much of it.

The masses in the dorm would hear about the party, and for some reason we thought it would be a good idea to just all go together. It didn't seem weird that we would all head towards a party, and by all, I mean 10-15 of us. We didn't think much about how such a large group of freshmen was a dead giveaway to the police as to where the party was. Thankfully for us, our party leader, Steve, never seemed to actually know where there was a party. I swear, he would just start knocking on random houses then ask them if a) they were having a party b) if they knew where one was. We usually ended up finding a party though. Not because Steve knew where he was going, but when you walk around the entire campus housing area you will at some point hear the loud music and loud voices. Needless to say, we learned to quit following Steve after a little bit and began to gain some contacts of our own to find where the kegs were aplenty.

I quickly learned that a party in a crowded Whitewater basement is a whole different ballgame compared to a party in the middle of a field in Highland. The obvious difference is the space. The sheer amount of people that would cram into a cramped dirty basement is mind boggling. The kegs were always surrounded by a mass of people with no rhyme or reason, often radiating out in a semi-circle. Getting through just to fill up seemed to burn off more alcohol than a filled cup would provide. There had to be a better way. There was!

At first, I was too nice, waiting in line patiently hoping, like at Six Flags, my turn would eventually come. After I quit being naive, and learned that this was basically a no-holds barred "line", I began squeezing my shoulder in whatever crease would be given to me. I would also notice that many people would have a full cup, but just stood conveniently in line waiting for the next round. These people were normally pretty good about scooting back to let you in. This helped some, but I also learned that there were enemies of the keg line who weren't as nice.

Enemy #1 - The House Cup/Pitcher - Nothing can be done about this, everyone honored this code. These are the people risking a police record for our fun (or to pay their bills). They were usually playing drinking games at a table in a separate room and that meant pitchers had to be filled to keep the game moving.

Enemy #2 - The Cup Passer/Multiple Cup Filler - This was most often utilized by the women, and reason, the tapper won't say no to a good looking girl (myself included) who just wants to get her and her friends drunk. But, the masses, men and women alike get stuck waiting an extra 15 minutes just to fill up a 2nd cup.

Enemy #3 - The Over The Shoulder Reacher - Buddy, settle, two things, first you are annoying everyone, secondly, the hose doesn't reach that far anyways.

Enemy #4 - The Line Budger - Once again, usually a good looking girl.

Enemy #5 - The "I Was Next" Complainer - Maybe you were, maybe you weren't, but do you think anyone really cares. Shut your mouth, you'll get filled.

Enemy #6 - The Pusher - Usually a larger guy who is able to shove his weight around. Only a few people are going to stand up to it, mostly because it just creates an argument not worth arguing over. I noted I would shove a shoulder in a crease...that has to happen, but plain pushing people aside is rude.

Ok, I've been guilty of having people grab my cup to fill it up while they are up front, but when someone asks, you can't say no. It really wasn't all that effective anyways as the tapper usually would spot this and move on to other people anyhow. Which of course brings me to the lessons I learned on how to keep the beer continually flowing in the cup.

Tip #1 - Make friends while in line. This is useful for a few reasons. One, if you or that person gets filled, then whoever is getting filled usually will tell the tapper that the other person is/was next. This is extremely effective (and awesome for other reasons) if the friend is a good looking girl. This new found "friend" could also become a pumper while in line, and the tapper usually respects whoever is pumping for them. Best case scenario, this "friend" becomes the tapper. Which leads to....

Tip #2 - Make friends with the tapper. The best way to do this, is complain about all the rude people in line. The tapper gets yelled at constantly, so hearing someone understand is a welcoming voice. The best idea is to maybe hang back by the tapper then, become a barrel monkey (usually along a wall now) until you've thrown a few down.

Tip #3 - Take over the tapper duties. This, comes with many responsibilities, and, as mentioned, much criticism. Who cares, you can now fill yourself and friends up as needed.

All of these were things I picked up on pretty quick. The other thing I learned, and a big difference from what I was used to, is the beer does not flow all night. The house that is throwing a party isn't looking to keep 200 people in their basement until 4 am. There are usually only 2-4 barrels at a party, so you had to work quick. Those of you who know about, 'working quick' when in terms of drinking know that it often leads to some pretty drunk times (and also a large reason I feel the drinking age should be lowered - more on that in a separate blog). It was always a rush to drink as much as you can as quick as you can. A two hour party ends up feeling like an all nighter and at 11 or 12 at night, the group would assemble and begin the always fun walk home to the dorms.

UP NEXT - Dorm Life

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Some Randomness and Some Rehashing

Topic 1 - My College Story

I know a few of you out there have been reading my college story which I am very happy about, so I promise to not disappoint. The first two chapters were written about a year ago, I did nothing but copy and paste from that. Well, that pre-written supply has been exhausted. I promised Stacey that I would start writing again last week, and I want to let her and the rest of you know, that I have indeed started Chapter 3. It is much more taxing to write now as things aren't as clearly engraved in my mind as well as those first few days were when things were all new and exciting, but I promise I will deliver.

Topic 2 - Going Green

Well, not completely, but why not help out where I can. My inspiration came from, none other than a Wal-Mart commercial. The commercial simply stated that the disposable cups that you get from coffee shops can not be recycled because of the water proofing they have. Now, I rarely stop at Starbucks or any other place like that for my morning Joe, but I do use Styrofoam cups (which could be even worse). I am not a big coffee drinker, but I will drink it at work when I am feeling tired or sometimes just to have something to drink other than water. My company has styrofoam cups provided that we can use to fill up from the coffee pot and sometimes I might use a couple different cups throughout the day.

So, I got to thinking, why don't I take a mug into work with me. Something simple and will it make a noticeable impact, no, but I'll feel better. I think throughout this next week I am going to think about other things I can do to help the environment where I can. I certainly am not going to go all hippy or overly inconvenience myself, but if we could all just make a couple small changes, we might just make the world a better place. And I know there is a debate on if global warming is a natural or man made phenomenon (my personal belief is we are speeding up the natural cycle), but we can all agree that recycling more, saving more fuel, making less waste, etc... is a good thing, so why not?

If I come up with a good list, I'll post a blogpost about it. I just heard that tomorrow is Earth Day, so in honor I will try to have a list by tomorrow.

Topic 3 - Quick Political Rant

So, I am beginning to think maybe it would have been better if McCain had won the election. My reasoning, different than you might think. You know how sometimes you can have a person who is so upset that they lost that they just whine and whine and whine and whine until the people around that person just give up just to shut them up. That is what I feel like, I am sick of the whining by the right (the hippies whine too, but, no one really listens to them anymore), the spinning of stories to demonize President Obama. The latest, that Obama thinks veterans are potential terrorists. Well, the VFW has agreed with the statement that was made that we need to protect our veterans from being targeted by terrorists (a program started under Bush, FYI). Well the GOP spun that story and made it sound as if Obama hates America. Also, OHMYGOD HE SHOOK HANDS AND SHARED A SMILE WITH HUGO CHAVEZ!!!!, my thought, good I was always under the impression that having diplomatic relations with any and all to be a good thing. Ben Franklin would be proud!

Hey, Republicans, maybe you should follow public opinion polls, you are a dying party at this moment. I fully believe Meghan McCain might be one of your smartest voices from the small samplings I have read.

I fucking love this country, it is by far the best country in the world, arrogant statement be damned, but even one of my closest friends has essentially called me unpatriotic and all but stated that I don't like liberty....the only reasoning I can think of is because I have a different political view than him. Remember, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson had very different political views, one certain the other's view was wrong and would damn the country. Both of those men are respected founding fathers, so you know what, we'll be ok! (sorry Jonny, just figured you needed some fresh fodder for you blog, been a while;) )

I have about 30 other subjects in my mind on the hippocritical right wing, but I honestly don't have the energy to deal with it anymore.

Topic 4 - 2009 Weight Loss

So far from the start of the year, I have lost about 35 (at one point 40) pounds. I have just been smart about it this time. I just watch my calories, no more gimmick diets like Atkins (though I tried it for about a week before I got sick). After seeing positive results and then getting to the part where I am driving myself crazy by not eating, I'll take a 1 or 2 week break to regain some sanity. I made a hard goal to lose a total of 70 pounds this year, and I realize that is mostly unrealistic, but that is why it is a goal, it is supposed to be a challenge. This week, I add another phase to this, working out. It is finally nice enough to go outside, go for a walk or a jog. Maybe play some tennis or shoot some hoops. As mentioned previously, I want to go biking this year, hit some trails, I have already spoken with Barney about joining him on some of his adventures this summer. Now, if those damned cheese fries at Miller Park can just leave me alone!

Topic 5 - Shameless Self Promotion

Maybe you know about it already, maybe you don't, but myself and a few others have started a sports themed blog (focusing on WI area sports). Please stop by and check it out.

Topic 6 - Where Are the Funny Party Stories?

Last night I reread my 3 part story about Mark and Stacecy's wedding, and you know, I enjoyed it. Then there is the Pewaukee adventure, the Vegas trip. Those were fun nights...things have been somewhat routine this winter, but summer is coming up, more summer fun planned already. Here is what is on tap that should help provide some good material and fun:

Three Weddings - Two of which I am in.
Camping Trip in Eagle River - Umm, beer, friends, lake, campfire...yes please! July 15-19
Denver - Drunk bus, awesome city, beautiful scenery, and watching the Cubs lose, how can this go wrong? Aug 6-9
Cleveland? - The theme this summer is short trips apparently. This one is still TBD

Those on top of Brewer games, summer parties, Summerfest, and other festivals should make for a great 2009 and hopefully some solid stories will come from them!

Topic 7 - The Twitter Phenomenon

Seriously, what the hell, why is the word, Twitter, invading my ear canals. I turn on the news, and the topic, Twitter. Which congressman or Senator twittered today, here is our twitter, please follow us on Twitter, we are at war with Ashton Kutcher over Twitter, Oprah Twitters, athletes are using Twitter....STOP IT!!!!

Now you might notice the upper right corner of my blog has my own Twitter updates. I was embarrassed when I signed up, but I really like the live instant updates and thoughts I can put on the blog. It is a nice touch that I wish was a was responsible for, not Twitter. I do not go to the Twitter website (after my initial playing around) and if my friends need to know what I am doing, they can see that on my facebook page. And there is a much better response system on facebook as well. Not to mention I can update that anywhere as well on my blackberry.

I first heard about this scourge after President Obama's address to Congress where many Congress members took flak for twittering during his speech. It took off from there, and it is a word that I hope just, goes away......I can live without that upper right corner of my blog being there, but no, I am not deleting it! What can I say, I am a product of my generation, I enjoy technology and constant connection with friends.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

A Lesson to be Learned From A Tragedy

As some of you may know, especially for you sports fans out there. Nick Adenhart, a rookie for the LA Angels was killed by a suspected drunk driver just hours after throwing 6 scoreless innings in his Major League debut. This is of course an extremely sad story and much of the nation, including me, has Adenhart's family and friends in their hearts, minds, and prayers.

With opening day at Miller Park taking place tomorrow, many of the same fans who have heavy hearts over Adenhart's loss, will hop in their cars after the game after having a bit too many and had for home, endagering themselves and others. I am not in any position to criticize or look down upon, though I certainly wish I was....but people, think about what you've had before you turn that key in the ignition. If you aren't too sure, fire the grill back up and relax in the parking lot for a while. Many times last year I spent an extra hour or two, laughing at the people fighting for position in traffic as I tossed a football around. The best part is, I still get home at about the same time since I am not stuck in traffic.

Tomorrow, I am glad to say I have my sober ride set for tomorrow, and I hope you have yours set as well. The loss of a life is always tragic, be it an MLB player, a family of four, or even your own. Have fun, but please, Be Safe & Be Smart.

Monday, March 30, 2009

50th Post

Yay, my first milestone, and it only took me three years to get here! It started after reading my friend Barney's blog and realizing that I too like to share my thoughts and adventures with anyone willing to listen/read. I also was in need of something productive to do with my time, as I was less than a year out of college and the weekdays certainly were not as exciting as they used to be, boredom started to set in. And even though I knew only several friends would make up the core of my readership, I find the whole idea of saying what is on your mind to be somewhat therapeutic and thus well worth it.

I remember it took me hours to think of a name, I wanted it to be clever and I am a bit of a perfectionist, so it had to be, well, perfect. As a pretty big fan of alliteration, I settled on The Bantering Butteris. I still like it to this day, though I wish I would perhaps thought of something that didn't involve my last name, as I now appear up in google searches, and I guess not everyone needs to know about my drinking adventures or my political philosophy, but, oh well.

I have certainly ignored posting to the blog many times, hence the sarcasm at the start of this. Truth is, I am not "married to it, and when things get busy or hectic in my life, then it is slips, and I'll be honest, sometimes I get lazy. Lately though I have picked up steam, and plan on continuing this momentum....hopefully I'll be having the 100th posting much quicker than 3 years time!

And now, so this post isn't entirely about nothing, I'll leave you with a couple little nuggets:

Sunday, March 29, 2009

#5. My Collegiate Life - Reality Check

There are certain days we will always remember. Be them good days, be them bad. Good days, such as a wedding day or a graduation day, are always cherished and reminiscent stories are always shared. Bad days, we always remember where we were and what we were doing when the bad news broke. We look back on bad days as ways we can change our lives to make us better people. What happens though when your naive outlook on the world is suddenly destroyed? The day in which I'm referring is September 11, 2001. Unlike, most of my peers in Whitewater, this day hits me a little harder, the reason a little different than one might think.

You ever get a phone call you won’t ever forget? A phone call where everything just sounds so, unreal, the words you hear are comprehended but your mind doesn’t make sense of anything. I woke up for my Econ class around 8:00. It was the 2nd week and things already seemed routine, another sunshiny day. Shortly after I awoke, as I was getting ready, I get a call from my dad. He lets me know that one of my classmate’s from high school was in a car accident on his way to work with his dad. My classmate, Clint, didn’t survive, his dad was in pretty serious condition. Now Clint, I considered a friend. We in no ways were best friends, but we shared both good times and rough times in the past, and we always liked to share a laugh at those times over a few brews.

I was obviously rattled by this news. I was 18 years old and had a feeling of invincibility about me at all times. I had experienced death, but not this young, this just wasn’t right. Obviously, not too much had been known at that point in time, so my dad could only answer so many questions. Things couldn’t get much worse on this day.

After we talked about Clint’s accident for about 5-10 minutes, my dad asked if I had the TV on. I did not as I had just woken up a little bit before and rarely turned the TV on in the morning anyways. He suggested I turn it on and never really explained. We got off the phone and I flipped the TV on. What the hell!

The images I just saw for the first time were the images that all Americans alive will always remember for the rest of their lives. By the time I turned on the TV, both of the World Trade Centers were engulfed in flames and it was known that two aircraft had flown into them in an obvious act of terror. We all know how the story goes, but my mind already in a haze over the news of Clint was just racing every which way.

The dorms were starting to stir now with people; most I don’t think realized what was happening yet. I call a few people who were out in the hallways to come in and watch this as I knew it was something of monumental importance. We were just watching these burning towers trying to make sense of what was happening, and it was obvious CNN was trying to make sense of things as well, desperate for information to report to the obviously stunned public. Then the news broke that The Pentagon had a large explosion, and that it was yet another commercial airliner. Jesus Christ, there is a full scale attack against us!

I still had class to get to. It was only the 2nd week of classes and I had not yet learned that class is quite optional, so I continue getting ready with an eye on the TV, and then a sight I was never expecting happened, one of the tower’s just completely collapsed! I paused for a few minutes in shock over what I just saw, but then I had to get going.

I don’t remember walking to class, as I am sure I had too much information to process. Thoughts over what was going to be hit next? When I return from class, is there going to be a Washington D.C. left? Are we going to be going into war? I do remember my class though. You can take a guess what we talked about the entire time. When the professor brought it up right away, not everyone had heard the news yet. We spent the entire time theorizing the who’s and the why’s. Being an economic class, we talked about how this could affect the economy. I was sort of upset that a) he didn’t let us go early b) there was no TV to watch the developing story unfold. When I got back to the dorm, the announcement was made that all classes were cancelled for the rest of the day. Little good that did me, I was done with mine.

When I did get back to the dorm, I made a few phone calls to some friends about Clint. I spoke with my friend Alicia, who was going to school in Madison, for a while about everything. She had not heard the news about Clint yet and was shocked to hear that on top of everything else that was happening. I sort of felt bad breaking that news to her, but hell, I needed someone to talk to and Alicia was always there for me in the past. The rest of the day was just spent watching TV with everyone. We were all in shock.

I fully believe that the events of that day helped to humble me as a person. Only being 18, I never completely lost that feeling of invincibility, but I did learn that you can’t take life for granted, and that you should live your life to the fullest. This is a philosophy that I certainly utilized throughout school and maintain still to this day.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Rebuttal

In response to my last blog, my friend Jonny has created a new blog with his words of rebuttal. I will agree that my statement about the 3rd world country was a little extreme, I had read sometime that a particular 3rd world country has more broadband access than the US does, I then spun that into something that flowed, haha, I am as bad as the politicians. Anyways, read, support....check back here then for my response

Later folks. Up next, chapter 2 of my college story!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Quick Political Rant

Seems like every day when I go to check the latest in news on the internet, I always see a new Republican agreeing that he/she wishing that our President will fail, what the hell? It started when the pill-popping hypocrite said it on air causing an immediate firestorm (damn liberal media, unfairly attacking poor defenseless Rush NotSlimbaugh). Now, the message has been transformed a little bit with major GOP heads agreeing with Rush. ---They have to agree, every time one of them said something bad against him, winning my personal praise, but they immediately backed down and said they were taken out of context....oh my god, they are F'ing scared of a radio talk show host!---Now the message is everyone is hoping President Obama's policies fail, a much more subtle approach at the Red/Blue differences in policy, and not a perceived attack at the President himself.

While the message has been, toned down, I still wonder, why? How can you want him to fail? I would guess if you asked any member of Congress, would you want every American to have quality affordable health care...their answer is yes. Now, the difference of course is the money it takes to acheive this goal of universally affordable health care, that part I can get. I have no problem with the GOP and anyone else opposed to the spending that will ensue, but, if it passes.....wouldn't you want to be proven wrong? Wouldn't you want to say, wow, I'll be damned, I thought it would bankrupt us, it didn't, and every American has quality affordable health care and wow, it might just save us a ton of cash in the long run as the gov't doesn't need to deal with costs associated with sick individuals. ---This is all hypothetical people, don't jump on me.

Wouldn't you want to say, I didn't believe in investing so much into the sciences, but I'll be damned, air quality is at an all time high, less kids are getting asthma, less money is needed in the long run once again. Or, I'll be damned, they cured Parkinson's disease, or MS.....or, wow, our kids are once again the cream of the crop in the world, making new inventions to help fuel brand new industries within the country.

Once again, all hypothetical, and if you don't believe the gov't should front the money and they still do, wouldn't you hope it at least works?

Let's jump back, 8 years....I was unhappy with the election of Bush over Gore, I couldn't vote, but was really not happy with what took place. However, at that point in time, I said, well, it is what it is, I wish him all the best to help this country. Even in 2003, I was up in the air on what should be done in Iraq, we obviously went through with the attack, I hoped for the best. I hoped we could topple the regime quickly, and that a peaceful nation would emerge. I think anyone who voted against the war, hoped for the best outcome and would've liked to be proven wrong.

Also, I am sick of the assaults conservatives will launch if you say anything to go against their opinion. They will send you links, and stories, and videos to prove their point. They will say that you need to read more, say you should quit watching and paying attention to what the mainstream(liberal) media tell you, I've been told to quit watching The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. Well, you know what, I can find links, articles, videos, books to argue my points, but Conservatives will just dismiss them as not valid.....the only true opinion is their opinion. it is thoughts like this, that help keep me to the left of the spectrum ( I fully consider myself a moderate). I can't stand that people are too damn stubborn to accept others ideas. Also, I do not take my news from fake news shows, who admit they are fake, and if you must know, I get my news from reading different online sites (newspaper & TV sites) as well as the local news. I just want to tell them they need to quit watching Hannity or Coulter, or listening to Limbaugh. Those clowns will cut a segment every bit as much as Jon Stewart does, to make things better for the context they want to spin and then pass it off as real news. They slander, they whine when things don't go their way.....Glenn Beck cries that he just hates to see his country like this, because he loves it so damn much. if you love it so damn much, do something to fix it....right or wrong, that is at least what YOUR president is trying to do. And to be fair, MSNBC does the same damn thing, and it is annoying! You should also all know, I don't read or look at anything you ever send me.

Remember the old addage, it takes money to make money. We are sitting with an infrastructure that was built in the early to mid 1900s.....our infrastructure has been compared to a 3rd world country.....our education system is not putting out performance, our health care system is a complicated, stupid mess of a system. People scoff at the money it would take to put broadband internet access available to every citizen. The internet is today's interstate system! No one seems to think that Eisenhower's insterstate system is a bad idea, at least not today. And at least he is trying to invest money in OUR COUNTRY, not other countries *cough*Iraq*cough*...let's not be so forgetfull Republicans.

Do I think Obama is trying to do too much, too quick, yes, I really do. At least, in my eyes, he is actually trying to fix things, not putting a band-aid over a severed arm. I want him to succeed, if he doesn't, we can try to start anew in 4 years. Too many people seem to think, that because I voted for him, that he is 'my boy'. He is not 'My Boy', so sorry that you decided you had to stick with your idiot of a President Bush and called him 'yours', no one said you had to. If Obama does something wrong, I hope he is held accountable, I am not going to go dig up arguments on why things are actually good and correct. I do though, want him to succeed, I want our country to be the prosperous force it was once again, and it is going to be a long, long road...but the sooner we invest in our country, while expensive, the sooner we can start to see payout and the expenses become will be well worth it....hopefully.

We have no idea how things will play out, we can all take our best guesses, but until the time comes and goes.....Please support our President!

I am not going back to proofread this, and I probably might disagree with what I wrote today in a month's time, but as of today, this is how I feel...peace out homies and homiettes!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Random Thoughts #2

Hopefully this one doesn't take a year to post! (3/24/09 - not quite a year has passed, but there is little info covered...sort of a race based blog apparently, interesting [the Maine trip was my last at Generac - actually ended up in Norfolk, VA] Anyways, I'll post it to get it out and out of my way)


As I walk out my hotel room in Farmington Hills, MI, I spot a one of the maids and to my bewilderment, she was white. Now, this isn't going where you think I might be going, quite the opposite in fact. I decided there was no way I was letting her clean my room because if I know white people, and I think I would, it is that they can be lazy and take shortcuts. Or perhaps that is just myself. I then pray that it was the other lady (I think she is African) who cleaned my room prior to me staying as I would feel it to be much cleaner.


So, I was in Rockland, ME today. And for those of you not familiar with the state, Rockland is in the middle of nowhere Maine. And to be fair, everything in Maine is in the middle of nowhere, including Portland! Anyways, to the point. I am sitting outside of a Home Depot when I see a mother and son walking together. Well, this sounds pretty normal, but you should see what this gangbangin' 8 year old was decked out in. In a town where I am pretty sure the African-American presence is 0%-2%....(2% being very high guesstimate), this kid has baggy pants sagging below his waist, gigantic shirt, a doo-rag with a ghetto-patterned hat over that and tilted to the side. Now if that wasn't good enough, he had just a ridiculous pair of 'stunna shades'. Each lens covered 1/2 his yes, his entire face appeared to be covered by sunglasses. PEOPLE, I AM IN MAINE. This was extremely amusing to me, especially because I wonder if this kid has even seen someone of a different race (other than native)? I also think of Office Space, where Michael Bolton turns the rap music way down when he sees a black person, then jams out when he passes by.....I see this kid being the same way, and that tickles me.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

JJO's .10k Walk/Run

So earlier this week during an e-mail conversation with Barney, I was brought to light of an event that was to take place on Saturday. The rock station out of Madison, and one of my all time favorite stations to boot, 94.1 WJJO was having their annual .10k walk/run to celebrate St. Patty's day.

Yes, you are reading that right, .10k, which apparently is the distance between Brother's Bar & State Street Brats. Yes, it is an organized, yet somewhat chaotic, barhop. I first heard of this event when it first started several years ago over the radio, but paid little attention to it as I had my own St. Patty's Day to celebrate in Whitewater, and nothing could top that I figured. Well, Bernard had participated in that first event, and told me the glorious details upon his arrival back to Whitewater from the big race. He had a racing number, a T-Shirt, and it struck me at that point, that it was a really neat idea.

The Route

Anyways, back to last week's conversation. Bernard kindly sent me a link to the event's website so I could further investigate and decide if it was something I would like to participate in. In a rush decision, I immediately say that I am in. The next day I have a bit of 'Buyer's Remorse' about my snap decision. I was planning on taking off this weekend from drinking, and looking forward to not spending any cash. I have a lot of expenses that will be occurring in the next month, and an all day drunk could not be easy on the wallet. I wrote Barney back saying that I was in turmoil over my decision, then shortly after the Badgers lost in the Big Ten Tourney I e-mailed saying that my answer was going to have to be a no. He understood, but promised I would spend little money as he was planning on selling T-Shirts that he had made, and those profits would specifically be for the purchase of drinks for all members of his party.

That night, I thought about what I was doing. I always complain that I want to do something 'different', and out of the ordinary....and here I was with the opportunity and was passing it up. I then make the decision at that point that if a party develops that night, I don't go, if not I stay home Friday night and early Saturday morning depart for the Mad City. The party for Friday night fell through, so I inform Bernard that I am in fact in. Trumpets sounded, choirs sung, Dustin made a decision.

The Big Day
My alarm sounds at 7 am, not an ideal wake up time for a Saturday, but having taken the night off, I was still recharged and ready to go. I grabbed my drinking gloves (batting gloves), my safety glasses, and my green tie in homage to my last Whitewater St. Patty's celebration and leave for Madison shortly after 8 am. I jam out, listen to some of my Pat McCurdy songs on my iPod to gear up for partying and Irishness. I park my car in the garage downtown, and met up with Barney. I threw my shirt on, and we started towards Brothers, by walking the race course backwards, to get a feel for it. We were determined to be the winners.

Ugh, Brother's, possibly one of the worst bar franchises in history. That bar (all locations) seem to attract the douchiest of the douches (I heard one guy took his pants off in the Milwaukee location), and the workers themselves often are jackasses as well. I have been a part of/witnessed many a arguments with bouncers/bartenders. I always get the feeling that Brother's establishments consider themselves to be a higher class than they actually are. Not to mention the Madison location is a great place to go if you want to have no place to move or breath. The design of the bar is stupid.

We try to go upstairs to get our race number, but were denied access because we were not pre-registered and they sold out. So, we get our mugs, order up some drinks and find a corner to stand in while we slowly inibreated ourselves. I saw some old friends, Kevin and Luke, from Highland and briefly said hello. An old AFS buddy, Whitney was also there and working as a Miller girl. So, she updates our attire with the necessary flashing promotional items and Leprochaun ears. The ears had to go though, as I basically have no earlobes and they kept slipping off. I later come up with the idea that they were not checking people if they were registered, they just asked. So Bernard went and sure enough got up and got himself a number, and kindly gave it to me. I was officially racer #858. The number had good flow, so I was pleased.

Then at 10:00, the Golden Keg was tapped after some dude dressed as a leprochaun and Greg Bear from the Jonny and Greg morning show did some Irish accents and played some Irish music, it really carried on for far too long. Speaking of Johnny and Greg Morning Show, Johnny Danger officially shows what many years of partying can do to a body, I took note. Oh, so, the keg was tapped, and I shouted Happy Oktoberfest (since they stole the golden keg idea).

Tapping of the Golden Keg

11:00 am - Everyone is asked to go outside to a parking lot for the start of the race. We finish our drinks and proceed. After some brief discussion on strategy, we were off like two fat drunk guys running .1 kilometers. Barney had the brilliant idea to record the race, I also decided I too was going to take video, and like a drunk Blair Witch Project we made film history. After turning the corner, I realized that I was behind, and I was not going to stand for that, so I reach in the tank and kicked it up a notch passing Bernard for the win, over him at least.

Please watch the race at the BDogSchneeby Times, click this link, TRUST ME

So, I wanted to throw up after that experience. It was exhausting, and we raced at a pretty good clip for being drunk out of shape dudes. But, by time I got to the door, I was settled down and good to go again. There was a problem though, I did not hit record on my phone, I had no personal footage of the race. This was traumatic to me, as I was sure I had some good one liners in there. This would be a topic that would come up many times throughout the day.

Being a wonderfully beautiful day, the outside patio was prepped for bargoers, and we make our way outside to enjoy the day. I had this weird feeling though. My face, felt warm, like, the light from the sun was making me feel warm. I liked it, seems like a feeling I felt before, last October was probably the last occurence of this event. So, as I mentioned, sun, I needed my shades. I go to the parking garage which was next door and little did I know a new adventure was about to occur, I got lost, in the parking garage.

Back to the bar with my shades that came from Australia, I was ready for some serious daydrunk. T-Shirt sales, slow at first, picked up when the executive decision was made to lower the price to $5. This was sort of fun, and helped us meet and talk with a lot of people. Met some girls who went to Whitewater, we try to do some sort of connection to relate with, but had nothing. I was saddened to hear though the bad news from one of the girl's letting me know that the Blue House was resided, and is now a gray color.

So, there is a cow statue, why wouldn't I go sit on it for a while?

That's me taking the bull by the horns....its a metaphor. But that really happened

Ok, food needs to happen. We head down State St. to eat at my latest obsession, Buffalo Wild Wings. Apparently I saw an amazing photo opportunity.

Then, we were back off to Middleton, for some rest. I reawoke around 7:30, and we went back downtown to recover my vehicle, and I headed home for new adventure. I went from an amazing city in Madison with smoke free bars and many young a dump of a city in West Allis at a bar that possibly gave me lung cancer, and shared my evening with many local townies. Both were fun, but the latter was back to the normalcy.

I'll be back in 2010, Fo' Sho'

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Voyage of one Man's Broken XBox 360

February 13, 2006 - Somewhere in China there was a birth that would cause me much joy...I rephrase that, a birth that would help steal hours from my life, a birth that would help me in times of boredom. This was the date that my XBox 360 was manufactured.

Later that month, or maybe it was March (details), I walked into a Best Buy store in Janesville, WI and find the treasure that I have been seeking for months, the coveted XBox 360. They were impossible to get a hold of since their release the previous fall. But the Gen 2 models were finally released in mass quantities. I had two choices at that time, the Core model, or the Pro model. I of course opt for the pro edition...wireless controllers, hard drive, basically every feature that you would eventually have to get for the Core anyways.

The 360 Pro Edition

I walked into my gigantically enormous living room of a bedroom, opened it up, sat on my sofa and played away. I think my first game was Ghost Recon - Advanced Warrior.

My XBox was there for me when I finally moved out of Whitewater and moved into Cottage Grove, it came with me when I became homeless for a few months and stayed with Guss at his Grandma's place by Pretty Lake, and it of course has been hanging true with me in Waukesha, it has been by my side (or rather by my TV's side) for almost 3 full years, until recently, when it took a turn for the worse.

There were initially rumors, ones I knew of when I first purchased the unit, that XBox's were failing do to overheating, they said though, the problems were resolved with the Gen 2 units, so no worries I figure. Rumors persisted that Microsoft had knowingly released the gaming console with a defect. They finall did fess up to it and created a 3 year warranty for any console that experienced this unique problem.

What was happening, from what I read somewhere and I don't feel like citing, is that components were to big to fit into the footprint, and the heat sink over the GPU (Graphic Processor Unit, I think) was shrunk in size. This decrease in size can allow too much heat to get to the GPU and along with natural vibrations, the GPU's glue gives way. This might not be what really happens, but was the jist of what I read. Anyhoo, when this happens, you get what is commonly referred to as the "Red Ring of Death". The XBox power button has 4 lights surrounding it, lit normally to show what controllers are on. But when 1,2,3, or 4 of them are red instead, this means there is a problem. Three of the lights are fairly simple fixes, but when you see 3 red rings (oddly 3 worse than 4).
Satan's Doing...I mean Bill Gates

I figured I received a good console, even though some like 5-30% are expected to fail. My friend Guss got the dreaded rings a couple years ago, and late last year Mark also experienced this. I was one of the first of my friend's to get a unit, and mine was still ticking I thought.

February 14, 2009 - Three years and 1 day since its birth. I was playing some Call of Duty - World at War online, waiting for my buddy Peter to show up. We were going to just stay in and drink in an attempt to save money, and if you notice the day, my intent was also to boycott the holiday as my initial plans fell through and I didn't feel much like going out. I was going to give my attention to the thing that was always there for me the last 3 years (Yes, I am purposely trying to make myself sound super-lame and pathetic, haha). We were going to kill some Covenant and Flood, maybe destroy some Halo's while we were at it. The game loads, it tells me there is an update available, for I haven't played the game for quite some time. I mean to hit the button to accept the update, but missed and continued. I wanted to update, so I shut the system down, with the thought to reboot and install the update.

I turn the unit back on, and I see red...."no, no no" Try again, and again, same result. I let it sit for a while, take the hard drive out and it turns back on, ok, good sign. Put the hard drive back in, RED. Take the hard drive back out, turns on, we play a mission. I try the hard drive again, red, red, red, ever since, red. It was official.

I slept on it, but of course it was broken. So, I called Microsoft to see if I was within the 3-year warranty, as I knew I as close and wasn't sure when exactly I purchased it. The dude, who talked way too fucking fast and sounded Aussie, told me it was all good, (I think he said something along those lines). Monday I printed off the shipping label that Microsoft sent to me and after work removed my XBox from its home and took it to the UPS store for its journey.

You can still see the dust prints :(

The Journey
Monday, February 16 5:25 PM - Elm Grove, WI (C'mon, just say Brookfield)
I officially leave the XBox in the care of some punk ass looking kid at the UPS store. I make him scan me the tracking #, so I know he takes care of this and doesn't steal it.

10:48 PM - Elm Grove, WI
It hops aboard a truck, bound for somewhere great, I hope it takes pictures for me to look at

Not Elm Grove/Brookfield
11:14 PM - Oak Creek, WI
Umm, well, tomorrow it will go somewhere great, it must have wanted to say hi to Mike & Andrea before it took off.

Tuesday, February 17 6:55 AM - Oak Creek, WI
Godspeed, my the brave UPS men and women handle you with care little buddy.

So, the first pic for OC was the A&W off Ryan Rd.

There is silence, I begin to worry, did weather cause an accident spilling packages all over the road? Then did a deer in, let's say, Arkansas, stomp on it. Birds then began to grab the shreds of plastic and use it for their nests? The suspense was killing me, not really, but if you haven't noticed, I am overdramatizing just a little bit.

Wednesday, February 18 4:47 PM
Whew, it has arrived in Mesquite, TX...bring me back some barbecue please.

10:01 PM
I guess it was loaded on a truck, not sure why the scan.

Shit you not, the Mesquite Hooters - They'll take care of my buddy

Thursday, February 19 9:20 AM
It has arrived to the repair center. Here, finely skilled techinicians, who were probably trained for, minutes, maybe even hours, will try to coax my buddy back to life. For now I wait, it is out of my hands...probably in the hands of an illegal immigrant or some white trash dude, but, the point here is, it is out of my hands.

9:30 PM
I receive an e-mail that the service center has received my buddy, an e-mail will follow when the unit is repaired and sent back to me.
Saturday, February 21 5:50 AM
Excellent news, I receive an e-mail fro Microsoft saying that my XBox was repaired and being prepared to ship. Another e-mail was to follow the tracking #.



No tracking number shows up in my inbox. Panic sets in, worry consumes me. I log into the XBox website to track the status. Good news, it did ship, it was currently in Hodgkins, IL on that following Wednesday.

not one good picture to use for Hodgkins, IL....worthless, like the rest of the state.

Thursday, February 26
I arrive home from work to see a note on my door, it is from package was in the apartment front office....I hop in the car, and the first thing I do is....go to Taco Bell, Iwas hungry and in need of tacos. Yeah, so, I picked it up, hooked it up, downloaded GTA IV Lost and the Damned, play for like 10 minutes, and, yeah, that is about it, been busy ok.
Back Home - At Last

Tuesday, March 3
After warmly welcoming home the XBox by playing several times with a smile, I decided it was now time to punish it for breaking down and running away. I went to Best Buy to purchase my brand new Blu-Ray player, which took the form of a Playstation 3. Truly, all it is meant to be is a Blu-Ray player, but a new baseball game was out, The Show, and it looked so much better than what XBox had to offer. I have been playing that since. But, no worries, when I get bored with that, I shall return.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Back to the Present! (Would have made for a terrible movie title)

First off, thank you to those who have been actually reading my college story. I have found that a few more people than I initially thought actually read this, literally few, but HEY awesome! I have been getting comments from several of you(I thought I said few).

-Some are scared of when they might arrive in the story, but still seem to be glued and intrigued. I will tell everyone now, my intentions are not to make anyone look or feel bad, maybe other than myself. If I think a statement will make anyone maybe feel uncomfortable, I will probably omit it, though I will throw some funny, uncomfortable moments against those I know will laugh about it.

-Some have commented on my amazing memory. Now, the first few days, are easy, but as things became routine, things will become more and more vague and will probably jump timelines a little bit.

-A couple times I have gotten some comments building upon my memory of events that were written, those are very much appreciated.

-One person is sort of upset that he/she...ok she, has not yet been mentioned...soon Stacey.

So keep reading, but right now, it is back to 2009.

A lot has happened to me since my last actual post. In August I was laid off, went through a pretty rough patch to be completely honest. I was given three weeks severance and had 3 months of health insurance, and to honest, I didn't think it would be any trouble getting a job. The experience I have, no problemo. The first week and a half, I didn't work too hard at it for I thought I was going to get a job that I was already well through the interview process prior to me getting laid off, I knew I was down to 2, and I had a friend who referred me.....turns out the other candidate already was working there through an agency, bam, ouch. Set back, I quickly ended up collecting unemployment checks. Guess what else was happening around that time, September 2008, oh, just the complete economic meltdown. Jobs were not going to be easy, I started working with a recruiter.

Well, end of October, I did get a call from another recruiter, woke me up, I answer, he wants me in for an interview that day in Mequon. I hungoverly suit up, and head over.....he wants me to meet the company. That goes well, and early the next week I go back again, that went well....then they wanted me to start the next week. That was fast, but, that works perfect for me. November 6, I was officially employed again. And 3 months in, I can say, I feel like a person, not a is very pleasant.

I do want to thank all of my friends and family for being there in tough moments for me. My buddy Peter said, you can tell who your true friends when you lose your job. Everyone was concerned, and offered their help or showed their concern. I do want to personally shout out a thank you to Peter, Bernard, Jake, Mike & Andrea, Erin Healy & Matt K, for being awesome to me during awful times, and of course Lauree for the amazing care package, that was awesome!!!

Other Stuff

Really, past blogs talk of my rowdy drunken adventures. There really haven't been those, unforgetable stories to talk about, just, all average nights and weekends. I have been having, fun, just nothing to write stories about. I think that has to do with winter, I'm a summer time guy.

I did start losing weight at New Years. I decided to not post all about it this time, as that has not worked for me in the past as I hoped it would. I am proud to say overall I am down about 30 lbs. I still am a long ways from where I want to be, but, have been developing better habits, and once it warms up will start working out again.

Okay, Current Current Events

Well, now just the busy things that you only would hear about when they just recently happen. The most disturbing thing in my life at the moment, my XBox 360 has died. The dreaded Red Ring of Death! I have had this XBox for approximately 3 years, the warranty for the RRoD, 3 years. My unit's manufacturing date 2/13/06, the date of death 2/14/09. errrrrrr. Well, the guy from Microsoft said it was cool, emailed a prepaid UPS label, and today I sent it off for repair, godspeed buddy.

Speaking of games, I finally found a Wii Fit. Played a bit yesterday, but today I went through everything they have....and no lie, that thing really actually works you out pretty good, though I might just be out of shape though.

Umm go Brewers in 2009!

That Was a Lame Post

Yeah, it was, I hope you wasted your time though. I am sitting in bed, and am getting more and more tired, and this piece of garbage was the result. Stayed tuned for the adventures of my Xbox oh, and Chapter 2 is coming of my college story. Chapter two doesn't really have any funny moments, and is pretty short, and I have to start on Chapter 3 still, so, just keep on me!

Sunday, February 08, 2009

#4 - My Collegiate Life - A Random Rant to Close Chapter 1

The Previous Posts:
#1. Prologue - The Night Before it All
#2. Moving In
#3. Meeting People

Now for the Thrilling Conclusion to Chapter 1

The next day was Labor Day, and it was the last day before classes were to begin. I had yet to really explore the campus, so when I woke up, I printed off my schedule and took to the campus for the first time. It was a fantastic day, the weather was perfect for a good walk. My first class Tuesday was in a building called Carlson Hall. My first class was Micro-Economics. So, I found Carlson then headed over to where my other classes were, most were in Heidi Hall that semester. I was an undeclared major, but I knew I was going to go into business, just wasn’t sure which aspect I wanted to pursue. I wasn’t concerned about being undeclared, most of the classes the first semester were all gen-eds anyhow. After walking around, I decide to head back to see if I had a roommate yet.

Carlson Hall

At last! Chris was there, organizing his stuff. You know how you form an impression of how someone might look just from talking over the phone and forming an opinion of their personality. I pictured a clean cut rich boy. I was off a bit. Chris had a large wallet chain and had an obvious like of the color black. Sort of unkempt greasy black hair. Oh lord, what unlucky draw did I get? Immediately from talking with him though, I knew he was a good guy, not some hardcore jackass, so was slightly relieved and sort of excited that he obviously shared the same taste of music as me and let me remind you a 32” TV and an Xbox! My most pressing question was why he would live in the dorms when he lived just two blocks away. His answer made sense, to get out of the house and experience the college life. Let me be pretty general with Chris here, he comes off with his appearance of a tough hardcore guy, but he is a complete softy. He was/is a great guy! He did hang a Canadian flag in our room and loved hockey, which I still find weird to this day. But the flag did make it fun when people would stop to ask if one of was Canadian, then see their confused faces when we both replied no. Chris just loved hockey, cold weather, and the RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police), so it was natural for him to like Canada. Overall, our very different exteriors and personalities with the same type of interests seemed to make a really good match.

Unfortunately, poor Ben’s roommate had yet to show up. What a jerk! I mean, he does realize that there is school tomorrow right? Speaking of school, I was nervous, college, here it was, officially. Part of the fun of being in the dorms, is finding friends who have the same class as you. Unfortunately for me, no one I knew had economics, so, I was going at it alone. I took it easy that night and got myself a good night of sleep, for the next day, Tuesday September 4, 2001 would be the start of a new beginning, by the next Tuesday things will just be routine…I figured.

Chris & I - Apparently after a Tornado Strike

I showed up about 20 minutes early (last time that happened) picked a seat in the middle-back away from anyone else. It was a very nice room, state of the art equipment. That was the only economics class in that room, the rest of the classes were in what amounted to a cement fortress. We went over the syllabus and the expectations of the class. Talked a bit about economics, supply and demand, that sort of stuff and then we were done. My first day of school was done at 10:45.…awesome! Also, good news for Ben, his roomy, Jon, had moved in finally. The kid seemed really cool, he liked to drink and party and was a pretty normal dude.

Wednesday was a bit more packed with classes, with four. It started off with my one and only math class of college. I had tested out of the algebra class and was put directly into MATH 103, which dealt with matrices, which let me tell you, was unlike anything I had ever done in math before. You see, I hate math, though I can be good at it if I were to apply myself. All I knew is it was easier than calculus, which I had my senior year in college. The best part of this class was Terri was in my class. Umm, double ‘in’! Well, actually, the best part of this class may have been the Teacher, Rao, who really liked flowers, and liked when you drew flowers on your test, he was, a weird individual. The worst part of this class was that is was at 7:45 in the morning. This seemed ok to me at the beginning and when I scheduled it. I always had to be to High School by 8:00, and had to wake up at 7:00, this won’t be any different. Yeah, I quickly learned that college is not the same. That was the last 7:45 class I ever had! Friday mornings were the worst. Who would have guessed that Thursday night was the big party night in Whitewater?

I had English 101 right after math, and then a break. The afternoons, after I ate lunch, I had History of the United States with the most, monotone, professor ever. Now, I like history, and in High School the history teacher was sort of boring, but had some energy to him. Granted, I learned more of his personal history than world or U.S. history, but, I could stay awake. This professor though, wow, have you ever listened to paint dry? That was this guy! Thankfully, the girl sitting next to me was absolutely gorgeous. Before class we did the typical Frosh thing making sure it was the right room and whatnot. She seemed pretty cool, her name was Christine, and I found out she too lived in Knilans Hall, on the 1st floor. I just found myself a walking buddy! I was always too shy to try and press anything with her, but I always wondered if she was ever attracted to me at that point. We always stayed as alright friends and she even lived in a house next to me a couple years later.

It turned out Christine also had Economics with me as well, and I think she had another class afterwards normally or was always with other people, so we weren’t walking buddies those days. But later in the semester she did head back to the dorms after class and we walked back. I remember this simply because a friend of hers walked back with us. He was a short, stocky guy with a red coat, and his little legs just wouldn’t move as fast as mine and Christine’s did (Christine is short as well though), we had to keep holding up for this kid, man Mr. Slow Guy annoyed me! I’ll give you readers a hint, there is a bit of foreshadowing here.

Not to sound boring, but I honestly can not tell you the first party I went to, who I went with, or even if that first weekend if I stayed in Whitewater or went home. I have a hunch that my first party was somewhere on Prairie St. It apparently was a good one! Life was definitely good though!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

#3 - My Collegiate Life - The Freshman Years - Meeting People

The next day, I woke up pretty early with the thought that my roommate would show up sometime soon. Not a whole lot happened until I got a knock on the door. Not my roommate, but a large group of people saying they were trying to get people from the floor together to play ultimate Frisbee. Ultimate Frisbee? What? This was definitely a foreign concept to me, and certainly sounded extremely hippyish. Frisbees are for throwing back and forth, and FYI, I suck at it! After I explain I have no idea what this ‘Ultimate Frisbee’ is, I decide it would be best to meet these people I would be sharing my life with for a year. They explain that the game is sort of like football rules, and then I had no problem even though there was no tackling…what kind of ‘ultimate’ game is this?

So, a large group of us head to a park nearby, to an area I am not sure I ever visited again even though it had a close proximity to my dorm. It was nice getting to know a group of people. There was Ben, Matt, Luke, Terri, Jean, Liz H., Becky, and some more who I feel bad for not mentioning, Chad maybe as well? I was meeting new people and couldn’t necessarily remember everyone. If I didn’t say your name, and you happen to be reading this, I am sorry and please let me know you were there.

Now this game was actually really fun and I was pretty decent. It was a hot day, and it felt good to be active and work up a bit of a sweat. I was happy to meet people, but while these people were all extremely nice and people I could see myself being friends with, they didn’t seem to fit the match of any other friend I had. I couldn’t see me partying all the time with most of these people, so I knew I still had work to do to meet more and more people. Please don’t get me wrong, this was just an initial thought, and I partied with most everyone there at some point, and I was great friends with all mentioned.

Of this group, I had my eye on Terri, not sure what it was, but something about her caught my attention. Anyways, I decided afterward to have a post-game conversation back in the dorms over in the girl’s wing to get to know Terri, and the others, a little bit better. It is weird how something as new and exciting as college can make you forget that just two nights before I was going through a tearful goodbye and was only a day and a half into being single again and here I am flirting with no thoughts of the past. I really feel kind of bad about this now. Back to the point here! I found out that Terri was from Blue Mounds and went to school in Mt. Horeb. This is what I consider to be in my ‘home territory’, which happens to include most of southwest Wisconsin. I actually happened to work at a cheese factory in Blue Mounds and knew several of Mt. Horeb’s finest citizens. Umm, hello my ‘in’ for conversation! I’ll be fair here, I got to know and talk with the other girls as well.

Terri & I

Back to my room to see if I have a roommate yet. This was sort of nerve-racking. The guy I am supposed to live with for a year in a small space has yet to show, and I just want to get the initial awkwardness of the first meeting over and out of the way. I open my door, and well, good sign, there is a large TV on the floor of my room, but, no roomy. Well, he must be making trips, all good. Well, he doesn’t show up at all the rest of the day. This is really getting me upset, but I’ll survive and I had to get myself ready for our first mandatory floor meeting. Great opportunity to meet everyone on the floor.

The meeting is a typical group meeting. The RA’s, Ben and Tess went over the rules and we all had to introduce ourselves and say something interesting about ourselves. I also believe there was some game we played as an ice breaker. The RA’s seemed to be nice, which is good, because they were the ones I needed to watch out for when I was drinking in the dorms. I believe this was the first time I met people such as Giddee, Cory, and Jacque.

After the meeting I was walking around the hall and stopped in to talk to Ben, the kid who lived in the room directly across from mine, room 209. His roommate had yet to show up also, so, it was good to actually sit down with someone who was in the same boat as me and chat. Turns out Ben was really into music, which I was too. At the time I was into hard rock pretty hardcore. Ben enjoyed the same music, but really, he just loved all music, which was neat. He had a large Dave Matthews Band poster and I explained that was my ex Liz’s favorite band. I didn’t know too much about them except for a few songs that Liz had shared with me, along with ‘Crash’, their big hit. I later would learn to loathe DMB because apparently everyone was obsessed with this band and I like to spite. Plus, the more I listened to the music, the more it just sounded the same, and it got really, really boring to me.

Ben & I

Ben loved going to concerts and recording the shows. He showed me his collection of mini-discs. This was awesome to me, for mini-discs were the obvious wave of the future; CD’s were going to soon fade out into the mini-disc. Well, that was what we all assumed then at least.

The Sony Mini-Disc