February 28, 2008

a journey well traveled

today is our last day (relatively) of consumption. it has been an interesting process to go through. i have found out one: i need to severely alter my diet; cutting out so much coffee and actually eating real food. runners up to coffee are cereal and nutragrain bars. two: most of my mental consumptions all come back to focusing on the idea that loving other people and showing them you care bring joy to my life. it gets stressful juggling what life throws are you from a midterm to a marriage to everything you can imagine.

it is hard to control what you are exposed to, be it physical or physiological, but you can control how you let it effect you and how you respond to it. i found that i am hard to sway from my personal course and ideas about things. i am more than willing to experience new ideas and viewpoints, but at the end of the day, it takes more and a lyric, a sign, a marketing scheme to move me. this i can say is a tribute to the faith i have found and developed in my life, and nothing more.

February 22, 2008

caffeine, you have foiled me again

so, things in the semester are heating up like whoa. it's getting hard to focus on all the things that need to get done. even remembering them all is hard, no even remembering to write them down a a challenge. just today, from my travels to and from work/class i am on my 4th, yes count them: 1, 2, 3, 4th cup of coffee. my entire body is out of whack and jittery as all heck. i will probably be going to withdrawal as i'm trying to force my self to sleep but can't because i am hopped up caffeine OD and extremely overtired. i'll have to switch to something else for a little get off the bean.

maybe vitamin water...

February 19, 2008

joie de la vie

le joie de la vie, it's an interesting thought. the awesome idea of just enjoying life, taking in all the little details of the things that pass us by, usually unnoticed. after talking about this with peers my mind wondered to this past summer. i was able to spend a week by myself in dublin, ireland: the motherland. with the ability to sit, watch, walk, see things on my own time line and own agenda i got to fully experience this sense of joie de la vie. as the week passed by my understanding, appreciation and need of this theory increased greatly. it all culminated on the second to last night of mine in the city. i was escorted around town by a couple musicians i have meet at a pub crawl the night before. i got to have an authentic experience of something that the irish hold dear...the pub and musical culture. yes, the pub. now, i have to explain first the difference between the "irish" and the irish pub. the irish pub as americans see it is a bunch of drunken fools playing violins and pipes jumping a round in riverdance steps, fists hurling and guinness flowing like milk and honey. even though this is be true (in some cases), the authentic pub is a close and intimate space to find a sense of community, music and a worry free atmosphere. the pub is the town living room. one step in, and you are in someone's home. now these are not in temple bar and the touristy parts of town, but if you hop a bus even 5-10 minutes out you step into a whole new place and into the hearts of the country's people.

once back in the states, i tried to take this sense of "joie de la vie" to a practical level. with school and work, tv and media the world get overwhelming fast. but, if we can filter our personal consumption and fill our lives with friends, laughter, and love (corny again, i know) it's easier to remember what truly matters in life, and we are certainly better off for it.

February 17, 2008

hostess with the mostess

we threw an engagement party for anna and matt today. so, kim and i have been in the kitchen from 10am to 11pm. we had:

-homemade pizzas, five of them, all different
-taco dips
-salsa dips
-pasta salad
-fruit dip
-homemade biscotti
-homemade cupcakes
-homemade brownies.

not to mention, about 25 people. it was all worth it thought. all the money (more than expected), time (at least three full days) and headache (just cashed out at the every end) put forth to execute this was all worth it.

we played shower games like a wedding dress out of toilet paper, who knows the couple the best, and then a little slide show. again, the chance to spend time with people i care about takes priority over almost anything. it's not only a way i recharge, but a way to show others i care. i will always be a consumer of giving care, love and hospitality.

February 14, 2008

queen of <3's

so. it's valentine's day. again. today i consumed a whole lotta sarcasm and, in the sprit of self pity, chocolate. at least i got to spend the night with jack and the rest of the lost crew. and, i did actually wear red. i don't really know why, i don't even like the color but, i do like making people smile so i made some brownies for class. that's something that i can fall in love with, haha, bakery. love is an interesting thing to look at though. one of the facts of life, that no matter what age, year or century love will always be there. i don't think it's so bad to have a whole day devoted to it, but people shouldn't only show the ones they love their feelings on this one day. it's an everyday thing that should happen. unfortunately it shouldn't.

but a fun part of the day is all the love songs on the radio. they make you laugh, cry, swear, etc. the emotions that are welled up in the lyrics somehow find their way into our minds and hearts. we as consumers of everything eat it up, wether we want to or not. i don't think anyone can escape the "love" either felt, lost or desired on valentines day, or any day for that matter. we need it as people and as human beings. i do believe that it is truly better to have loved and lost, then never loved at all.

February 12, 2008

day's of birth

it's colleen's (a roommate) birthday today, so...i treated myself to a grande mocha at starbucks. she should not be the only on to get to celebrate. either way, i needed coffee to help me get through my classes today. i'm actually on my way to get a birthday present for her at midwest mountaineering. i'm gonna get her a pink water bottle, the metal ones. I was told that the nalgenes, if used too long or are heated up somehow, the plastic gives off chemicals, and some estrogen into the liquid and the drinkers drinks all that crap too. scary. it made me think of all the crap that no on even knows we consume on a daily basis. i mean what's really in my water, my soda, my drink? what is in that cole slaw in the lunch cafeteria? i feel like too many people, myself included at second-handers: we just take for truth what is told second hand. no one really goes and finds or confirms information anymore. from ingredients of food to ingredients for life, we should be aware of what is really going on and not what we are "told." either way. we are making chocolate cake tonight for colleen and i'm excited to eat it...no matter what's in it.

February 10, 2008

love and murder...what?

thankfully i did not get sick from griffin on friday again. i am confident the bug has pasted, but i am still sticking to gatorade (a nice step up from water) and little bowls of oatmeal. this past weekend have been slow on the real consumption level but big on the abstract, it has been picked up. after my day with the little buddy, i was whisked away to a yacht my monte carlo. it is not as extravagant as you think, in reality 8 of use we headed to prior lake for a murder mystery party, "the grapes of frath." my character, bella donna maria cossa, was an up and coming opera singer who was an illegitimate child of the murdered party. it was a great game. (i highly recommend it for anyone who likes to get in to things or just have fun.) it was also exciting for two reasons: 1) i got to see my friends dress up in ridiculous outfits and play interesting characters in the game; 2) i got to meet a couple new people of whom i didn't really know. like i have previously stated the time spent with others is a great way to consume the environment surrounding you. just a good time with people i care about. this evening did get me thinking though. it all felt very grown up and old. i grew up with my parents throwing these types of parties so i could help but think of them. this made me feel very old. all of these thoughts of "old" and "grown-up" lead my mind to the realities of graduation, moving on, and in general the little things i take for granted as a college student: essays get traded for accounts; advisor meetings are switched to 401K plans and financial investments; even week-night plans are changed to getting to bed early for work the next morning. i gave myself a big helping of reality which lead to a little investigating to my housing for next year and some work on my portfolio. the job hunt should be starting soon.

saturday i was treated to dinner and dancing my the gentlemen of campus crusade here on campus. it was a fabulous dinner and who can beat dancing? it will be the last of four for me. and i'll miss coming next year, which only added to me feeling old. but the real treat was when my friend of 22 years told me she would be soon getting married to another one of my good friends. after the shock wore off, and i was helped off the floor, i felt nothing but joy at the idea. to celebrate we busted out some fancy licorice, our favorite snack. this news would bring my total wedding count/engagements for the year to: 4. i just hope it stays there, i don't think i could stomach and more.

February 7, 2008

no consumption for me...

this week has been very anti consumption. more for reasons known as: the flu. if i consume...ya, we all know it ends up in revers. but...i got to consume a big does of family responsibility, and the hospital gave me some sweet saline and other fluids (of which were unconsumed very quickly on the curb on the er) but...let me recap:

sunday: chruch, couple cups of coffee, dinner at brothers, time with griffin (the nephew, and the flu carrier)

monday: call from sister-in-law, "you need to take me and griffin to the hospital." both throwing up, to say the least. spent the day of the fairview hospital north of blain. my brother had to meet with clients all day, so i got the play family for the day.

monday cont: 7pm, call from brandon (my brother), "kels, i've started to get real sick, and sandra and griffin are staying at the hospital. i might need you to take me later tonight." thankfully he didn't ne a ride, but i sure did...
12am: the flu strikes
2am: trip the the er
7am: sent home (but still throwing up)

tuesday: dead to the world, only awake for about half hour total, only a couple sips of water.
wednesday: only half dead to the world, pale as a ghost, and completely unable to comprehend anything
thursday: actually got to try some crackers today, but then i was spent.

good news: griffin was ok and out of the hospital along with sandra, and brandon got hit the lightest.

oh family...i'm babysiting the little one tomorrow. we will see how this goes.

February 3, 2008

a slow start

rough night last night: gophs lost in hockey to und; not ok. but, a quick trip was made to b.loco with my roommate to lighten the blow with a couple beers and good conversation. conversation, in my mind, is the best type of consumption. there were about 7 of us at a high top. it was nice to kick back for a little bit and just be with everyone (corny i know). the topic list for the evening:

1. beer in general: guinness always coming out on top
2. jordan's job at wcco
3. abby
4. kim's lightweight-ness
5. spooning
6. hofer's beard, then tim's bold attempts to shave to look as if he were in the civil war
7. colleen's long legs: we are working on a children's story, a very tall tale.

even thought none of these topics are of any consequence or real information, getting to learn new opinions, perspectives and ideas from the people around me. it was also relaxing, and probably the best consumption thus far.

February 1, 2008

that auld lang syne

after all of the gladiator excitement, i took a chance to thing about some resolutions i have made about 29 day previously. some were regular old lose x lbs, stay on top of school work, get enough sleep, etc. but, some were a litter deeper. as i went through the day, first off skipping a lecture and eating some cake for lunch, i realized that why is there so much emphasis on the "new" year? i mean i think that only taking one day to think about how we can make ourselves better people is great...but if people are really looking to have an impact on themselves, we get the chance for a "new" day every 24 hours. idk, food for thought i guess. as for the rest of the day, i spend some time at work and then grabbed a coffee, with double shot of homework.

January 29, 2008


in class today we got a big helping of american gladiators served to us by 12 god-like figures, not to mention laila and hulk. it is interesting to compare this showcase to the spectacle barthes analyzes in his essay of wrestling. some of the obvious similarities are the over dramatic and showmanship of the fights. for the gladiators, they are welcomed into the arena with laser light shows and fireworks all of which glisten against the silver costumes. this grandeur adds to the feeling and idea of an epic journey is about the take place, like in the greek myths. it is all played to be an act, a show, pure entertainment. as far as the gladiators themselves, they play up a stereotype of some-sort to the max, leaving no room or ambiguity or question to the viewer. this same sentiment was shared by barthes. the 12 larger-than-life charters, in some cases literally, bring to the table exactly what they are supposed to, an energy that makes its way through the challenges to the audience in house and home. as for the contenders, the are your average joe but driven to defy the "gods" of the eliminator. draped in red and blue, heroic colors, and preface with personal vignettes, the home audience can form a relationship with each contender. through this contrived sense of familiarity the viewer is drawn into the story even more.

at the end of the day however, when the contender finally beats that damn ramp, it is all just for show. pure show. the drama let us escape for an hour or so but in so, lets the viewer participate in an age'ol indulgent of theater and entertainment.

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January 28, 2008

oh hi sunshine!

as i sipped coffee on the was to the west bank, it was nice to take in slightly warmer temperatures of the day. i didn't gain much from sitting in lecture, but during lab we were taken to the bell library to look at old maps. there were gorgeously adorned with hand painted illustrations of greek gods and goddesses, army encampments, and depictions of cities, countries and continents. It was really interesting to see what was thought of as important, usually decided by size, and the ideas the cartographer has about the make of our world. after being enlightened by the maps, i was trying to fight the sleepies of a late night and the unusual warm weather so i headed to starbucks for another cup of coffee and a much needed sugar boots to get me through the end of the day; my vanilla latte and banana nut loaf ran about $5-6. the rest of the evening sped up with a fast trip to the mall for some engagement presents for a roommate, and then viewing a tennis match at the baseline center. the all important bowl of cereal for dinner rounded out the night just in time to get to bed.

January 27, 2008

breakfast for lunch?

saturday defiantly made up for sunday's effort on this project. saturday was made up of mainly meals. breakfast for lunch with a high-school friend at the dinkytowner; two eggs, toast, hash-browns for $7. It was fun to catch up, talk about how our breaks were and the newest gossip about old bchs alum. after lunch, homework ensued until i met my brother for dinner at ruby tuesdays. it's always great to spend some time with the big bro, even when he doesn't bring around the little nephew of 18 months, griffin is just a big hunk of awesome. both of our mini burger and salad bar and drinks ran about $13. but brandon is defiantly good for it. after dinner, the night took a turn for crazy when i got myself back into homework until blissfully falling a sleep.

sunday was pretty relaxed and very consumption free. coffee before church, a hot turkey and chess sandwich of off the grill (all made at home), napping to america's next top model re-runs (cycle 2/eva the diva), homework (as always) and cozying up with the screen actors gild awards.

January 25, 2008

a good cup of joe

friday mornings are always bitter sweet. excited that it's friday, sad i have to wake up for work at 8am. not fun. but, with my trusty cup of coffee, it eases the pain of daylight. as i rolled up to my desk in my wheeled chair i took a drink of my coffee. the only thing was it was horrible. i had tired something new with some fancy syrup and failed miserable. this however lead to a pilgrimage through the cold to get a sweet grande skim no foam vanilla latte and a blueberry scone for $4. d e l i c i o u s and hit the spot. for the rest of the day i only consumed information about maps in class and mundane back and fourth of a job. i did get a chance to warm up to a dbros hot chocolate, 2.90 and the thoughts of mark twain's pudd'n head wilson. The day ended strong with a necessities trip (bread, milk, chips, salsa, candy bar) to rainbow for $15, dinner at bloco with a roommate for $9 and the hilarious anecdotes of anchorman with a friend.

January 24, 2008

c if for consume

the best way for me to start my day is to drink i nice hot cup of coffee. my fair trade brand morning blend with a little bit of skim milk and dash of hot chocolate does the trick like nothing else. as i looked at my thermometer, i noticed the -23 and decided to give up the $7 it would take to park in a ramp than walk the 20 minutes it would take to class. this made me feel very warm...as i turned on my seat heater and drove off. as far as the rest of the day, i bought supplies at the bookstore for a total of $47 of which included a shinny new calendar for 2008 and some stamps to mail off birthday thank yous. the rest of the day was pretty low key; got overflow coffee with a friend, $1.80, and i pawned off some dinner from a roommate then hit the hay early.