It's been fun...

This will be my final post on this blog.

I can tell you that writing here has, and I'm not blowing this out of proportion, changed my life for the better in ways that I could have never expected.

But, now that I'm looking to a new chapter in my life, it is time to close this book for the final time.

To the friends I've made elsewhere, please know that I will still be checking your sites occasionally and commenting, as I've done before.

To those who have enjoyed my musings here, I'm glad I could do something to make you smile.

Until we meet again Internet...


Apparently, I'm getting old...

I went to Homecoming at my alma mater last weekend and I pretty much knew I was getting old after being there.  Certainly, the reason I felt older could be that college students seem only to get younger.  But, this time it was because I found myself becoming my parents.  And here's why...

What is with writing on the back of a pair of shorts or pants?  Ladies, I offer the following observations before you don such a pair of pants.  First of all, if your ass is big enough that I can see the whole word, then you really need to reconsider calling attention to it by having something plastered on your ass.  Second, if you are a big fan of your team, what does it say about them when you decide to put them on your rear and sit on them?  I once bought toilet paper with a rival team's mascot on it with the slogan, "The only place for a [opposing team mascot] face."  Putting the team or school on your bottom doesn't communicate support or spirit.

If you love your team or school, show it by putting it on your chest.  That's something we can all enjoy.


Confessions of an absentee voter...

I'm an absentee voter.

I've voted in every election I've been able to vote in, except one primary election (and I couldn't vote in partisan races, so it wasn't much of a loss), but have only been to the actual polls once.  For some reason, I just prefer to get my ballot in my hot little hands, do my internet research, vote, and either mail back or drop off that little green envelope.  I think even in the world of sample ballots and early voting, I just prefer the certainty of an absentee ballot, because I get time to deliberate before actually casting my vote with my actual ballot.

Now, I fully realize that voting absentee means that my vote will, more likely than not, not be counted at all.  Typically, only people who vote the old-fashioned way are actually counted and calculated.  They don't open those little green envelopes with "official election mail" unless they make a difference in the result.  Absentee ballots are the "Senate President" of the American electoral system; they only have a vote that counts when it actually matters.  Of course, that's also the silver lining:  If it actually matters, then my vote counts that much more.

Well, when the returns come in on the night of the 4th, hope it's a landslide.  Because, if it isn't, you're going to have me to thank for what you get.

However, as much as I enjoy being an absentee voter, I can't help but feel a little guilt.  Campaigns make their big push to lead up to November 4.  I know that, they know that.  But since I vote early, I don't get the same impact that your typical voter gets.

With Presidential campaigns, I really don't care that much.  I've pretty much decided who I'm voting for by the time I finish watching the third debate.

But every once in a while, it can bother me.

Today, I dropped off my ballot and, when I got home, I found a flyer from one of the candidates for my community development district at my door.  Typically, I don't feel guilty about not reading campaign literature before I vote, but last night, as I was finalizing my ballot, I went online to research the candidates for this position.  Unfortunately, there wasn't a lot of information about them, so I ended up googling them to find out anything I could about them.

In addition to finding what they said at prior development district meetings and who was an incumbent, I also learned who had other people make contributions to their campaigns, who was making personal loans to their own campaigns, who had printed flyers, who had grassroots campaign parties, and who did any number of other things with their money.  So, when I read this flyer, I felt a little guilty knowing that this candidate paid his own money (since he was the only contributor to his shoe-string budget campaign) to make this flyer (at Kinko's---told you they're revealing in small campaigns---and, yes, I know which one) and likely personally put it on my door.  Yet, I didn't read it before I cast my ballot.

Of course, after actually reading it, I realized it wouldn't have convinced me to vote for him.  

So that helped assuage the guilt a little bit.


Hi Internet. It's me.

So, it's been some time since I posted last. I think part of the reason is that I've had someone to tell many of my thoughts to, which is no longer the case, and that I spend most of my time working on my computer, which is still the case.

I recently went through another year of High Holidays, but I had quite the predicament this time around. For the uninitiated, the High Holidays are Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year) and Yom Kippur. Of course, Yom Kippur is the Day of Atonement, but it is really just to atone for your sins against G-d. There are ten days between the two holidays that are really meant to atone for your sins against other people, but apologizing for having wronged them.

One of my favorite stories (which I remember vaguely from when I heard it) about Yom Kippur is about a two men who go to visit their rabbi in preparation for Yom Kippur. The first one says to the rabbi, "Rabbi, I have done an absolutely awful sin this year. I have done something absolutely terrible and I need to know how I can ever get the Almighty's forgiveness."

The rabbi responded by telling the man, "Go out into the courtyard and find the largest stone you can find. Then carry it back here."

Confused, the man did as the rabbi asked and found an enormous stone that he brought to the rabbi. Upon his return, the rabbi told the exhausted man, "Now, place the stone back where you found it, exactly as you found it."

Again confused, the man did exactly as the rabbi asked. He carried the stone to the place that he remembered it being and placed it in the position that he thought it was in when he took it.

After doing so, the man returned to the rabbi and the rabbi told him, "Deeply, sincerely ask the Almighty for his forgiveness for your terrible sin and I'm sure He will forgive you."

Soon thereafter, another man came to visit the rabbi and said, "Rabbi, I really don't think I've done much wrong this year and I don't really know what to ask G-d to forgive me for this year. So I'm not quite sure what I should do on Yom Kippur."

The rabbi tells the man, "Go into the courtyard and find as many small stones as you can carry. Collect them and bring them back here."

Confused, the man does as the rabbi asked. After a while, the man returns to the rabbi, barely able to keep all of the stones that he collected in his hands. The rabbi then tells him, "Put all those stones back where you found them, exactly as you found them."

The man, shocked, replies, "Rabbi, there's no way I can do that! There are so many that were all over the courtyard! I have no idea where I found them and where I need to put them back!"

The rabbi replied, "This is what you need to learn about Yom Kippur. You have collected small sins all year and this is the day that you fix them and put things back as they should be with G-d. If you cannot remember your sins, then you have all the more reason to ask for forgiveness for engaging in them because they are so numerous that you cannot even be honest with G-d about what they are."

I've always loved that story because it reminded me that Yom Kippur is really a time to ask for forgiveness for things you know you've done wrong and for things that you can't even remember.

However, the story doesn't answer one important question that I've had this year. What happens if you have a rock that is incredibly big to you and you know where to put it, but you just can't carry it back to where it belongs? What if you think struggling to put the rock back will be more painful than moving it in the first place?

I guess I'll have to look for another story to answer those questions...


The beauty of unintended humor...

Today, I was checking out news articles online when I found this little nugget on CNN...

The highlighted section says, "The father is Casey Aldridge, a pipe-layer from Liberty, Mississippi." (emphasis mine)


I'm sure he is...