My Life as a Dog

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Fall Colors 2009

The fall colors this year have been pretty amazing. Mom wanted to take a drive up the canyon and check out the beauty before she went in for knee replacement surgery. So last Sunday I was Mom & Dad's chauffeur up to Squaw Peak and through Hope Campground. It was truly beautiful. We are so lucky to live in such a place.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Confidence: The Need for Love

My brother was embarrassed for me when I posted on Facebook that I was reading a book called Confidence: How to Succeed at Being Yourself. So I'm sure he'll be even more embarrassed for me when I blog about it. So here I go... :)

First of all let me just say this: Who could not use more confidence? Oh sure we all know people who seem to have too much confidence. But is that confidence or is that just cockiness covering an inadequacy? I'm not entirely sure. I only know that this book was full of great skills for living to your best ability. McGinnis covers several topics related to confidence but in the end it seemed to come down to one topic, that of love. The need to be love and to loved. This section was my favorite from the book and I hope I'm okay to share it here:

The Need for Love

Human beings are made for love, and I find that many of my clients forget that. They scramble to shore up their self-images with various techniques, without giving sufficient attention to the source from which they will get help most readily -- good friendships. They make all sorts of protests -- that they're too busy, that they've learned to live without needing anyone, that they can't trust people, that they are really loners and prefer solitude. But it is all a smoke screen, and underneath lies a powerful aching to love and be loved.

Many people make the mistake of supposing that they will be happy only when they find the right man or the right woman to marry, neglecting the essential arena of friendship. Few of us are ready for a sexual relationship until we have learned to sustain a friendship. We do not have to marry to be happy, but we do have to have some love, and that can be found in the right type of friendships. The irony is that the persons who begin to relax in some solid friendships with people of the same sex -- and stop worrying so much about meeting the man or woman of their dreams -- begin to be much more attractive to the opposite sex. Friendship appears to be the best springboard to romance.

There is another reason to put more emphasis on friendship and less on romance: with the realities of divorce and death, most of us will have to spend at least some part of our adult lives unmarried, so it is a poor strategy to put all our eggs in one basket. We could find ourselves entirely bereft of love when something happens to our mate. When a man says to me, "I don't need any other friends -- my wife is my best friend," I do not applaud. He is putting too much pressure on his marriage, for there is no way any one person can meet all your emotional needs. To expect your mate to do so is to ask an impossible thing. Moreover, I fear for the man when, God forbid, he finds himself without his wife. Your mate should be your best friend, but not your only friend.

How does one go about building a circle of sustaining relationships? Most of my clients think the problem is in finding a place to meet new people. But the basic answer is not in meeting more people, it is in deepening the relationships we presently have. Many of us have acquaintances who could be promoted to friends, some friend who could be promoted to a good friend. It may seem easier to begin with someone new, but the best source of love is probably in your present circle of family and friends.

Alan Loy McGinnis
Confidence: How to Succeed at Being Yourself
Pages 155-156

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Funky Chicken

So yesterday I was in Costco doing a little shopping when I got a call from my mom. She was just checking in, wondering how I was doing and updating me on what she had been up to. She was telling me about going to physical therapy and then how she cooked a chicken. She continued with more details on the chicken, telling me that it had 3 legs, 3 breasts, and 4 thighs. My response was, "What? Where did you get a chicken like that? I'm pretty sure that you shouldn't be eating it!" :)

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Ciao Italia

I did it! I bought my ticket and I'm going to Italy, France, and England. I just got my passport earlier this summer and I will have put it to use several times before the year is over. Woo hoo!

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Discount Tire

Just want to say how much I like being a customer of Discount Tire. They really know how to provide great customer service. After my fiasco of driving to SLC on a flat or nearly flat tire and totally ruining a tire that would have otherwise been fixable, I was sure that I would be dishing out some cash for one or two brand new tires. So you can imagine my surprise when I took my car back to Discount Tire where I always buy my tires and they informed me that they would replace the tire free of charge. I was honestly in shock. They did charge me $18 for disposal and some of the other fees but the labor and the tire were absolutely FREE! This just supports my previous beliefs about them as well. They have fixed tires that I didn't even buy from them. And I have heard all sorts of positive experiences from my friends too. Finally a company that is doing right by their customers. What a better way to win loyal advocates.

Every Trail - Windy Pass

My brother has a cool iPhone application that he likes to use on hikes. He used it on our last hike to the Windy Pass summit. It allows him to take photos along the way and record where the photos were taken and the path that we hiked. It's pretty cool. He uploads the files to a webserver and it creates a map like you see below.

Windy Pass

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Monday, September 07, 2009

I Want My Man Card!

On Sunday I visited some friend in Salt Lake City. When I left and went to my card I noticed that one of my tires was flat. Suddenly I remembered my car sounding funny when I was drive up there. But I had had my headphones in because I was talking to my mom on the phone. When I hung up I just switched over to listening to my iPod. I probably drove most of the way with this flat tire. So when I got to my car I thought well I might as well just drive to a gas station and so I did. I tried pumping the tire up with the hopes that I could still drive on it. Not so much. There were bulges all over! I decided that I was going to have to put on the little donut tire.

Now I have had flat tires before but never have I had to change one on my own. I was actually looking forward to the challenge (at least a little bit.) I called my sister to let her know that I was going to be a little late. I was going to stop by and drop off her computer which I had been working on. She volunteered to come and help and before I knew it I accepted her offer. When I got off the phone I got the jack and lug wrench out and started working on replacing it. I got to thinking, "Why do I need my older sister to come rescue me?! I'm a man. I can totally handle this!" I called her back and told her not to come that I was totally fine.

So I got back to work. Got the car all jacked up. Got the lug nuts off. But then I could not get the tire to actually come off the axle. I panicked and called one of my friends that I had just seen. (I definitely couldn't call my sister back!) He was already on his way home to north SLC. I told him that I couldn't get the stupid wheel off. He said he'd turn around and come back to help. I felt bad but he insisted. In the meantime I kept bugging the nice Indian family running the Sinclair I was at. I thought there must be something that I missing about changing a tire. He came out a took a look at the tire and then gave it a good kick. Oh! That did the trick! That was the step I was unfamiliar with. After that it was smooth sailing. I got the old tire in the trunk and the new one installed and inflated. I called my friend back and tried to insist that I was fine and to go ahead and go home. But he is stubborn and I just gave up. I went in and got cleaned up in the restroom. I felt so bad about bothering the family running the store that I needed to buy a Diet Dr Pepper even though it was Sunday. (flat tire = ox in the mire) When I came out my friend was waiting for me. Once again I tried to tell him I was fine but he insisted on following me to my sister's house. It's nice to have such a good friend.

So now there are no doubts, I can change a flat tire all by myself minus the swift kick. But I'm pretty sure I can do that next time. :)

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Windy Pass Hike

On Thursday after racquetball my brother casually asked me if I would like to do a hike on Saturday with him. I thought, "Great. This would provide some quality brother-to-brother time." He explained all the details which went in one ear and out the other. All I heard was "wah wah wah wah." (Charlie Brown reference) Somehow I figured the hike should be about 4 hours. Seems like a good amount of time for a hike, right?

So Saturday came and I threw a few granola bars and some string cheese in a pack, filled my water bottles, and grabbed my inhaler. I was ready to go, right?

Ben, Dallas, and I started the hike up South Fork canyon at Big Springs. We were too far along the track until Ben spotted a beaver dam. We got off the trail and examined it, taking a few photos. On the way back I stepped in a big marshy mess of a bog and went in up to my ankle! Good way to start the hike. Fortunately not much water actually worked it's way into my shoe or that would have been hell for the rest of the hike.

The trail up to the summit was pretty step most of the way it seemed. I had a hard time realizing how steep it was until I looked back at the path we had already covered.

Now I forgot to mention that I had been sick all week. Not sick like I would stay in bed kind of sick. But I had had the sore throat, then coughing and on Saturday my nose was a running through most of the hike. So we were approaching the top and I was completely sweaty, my nose was running, and my head was pounding. The is all happening when we are about to summit "Windy Pass." So you might figure out what happens next: yep, wind. The wind was freezing. I had enjoyed the sun being behind the clouds for most of the hike but now I was starting to freeze. Just when I thought I was as miserable as I was going to get, it started to rain and thunder. Nice! So we hunkered down under pine tree just like you are supposed to when there is lightening. (sarcasm intended) Fortunately the storm passed fairly quickly and we were able to summit. The view was beautiful but I was still miserable and just wanted to find the quickest way down. Plus it had taken us 4 hours just to summit. I knew going down the way we came was going to be hell. So we opted to have my sister-in-law come and pick us up by Rock Canyon Campground. So we followed one of the man made troughs across to the other side of the canyon and picked up the trail going down. It was long. Too long but I think still a better option than going back the way we came. It took us about two hour from the summit to get to the campground and another hour or so walking on the road until we found my sister-in-law. Yay! She even brought us each a big 32 oz. Diet Coke a piece. I was in heaven! We were supposed to hike Timpanogos the next Saturday. Yeah, that's not going to happen! :)