Tuesday, September 30, 2008

What every parent should know about Halloween day at their child's school.

Dear Parents,

Halloween is upon us and soon your children will be stalking the school halls in their costumed garb.  On that dreadful day, if you will remember the following rules of thumb, you will make things much easier on your teacher:

1. Do not expect your child's costume to come back in perfect shape.  Even though the costume cost at least fifty bucks at Walmart, costumes are made of a synthetic fabric that tears with the greatest of ease.  I once wore a costume purchased at Target and accidentally spilled juice down the front of it.  The front of the costume disintegrated before my eyes and I was left bear chested, my chest hairs flailing in the wind.  Now that I think of it though, it may have actually been the potency of the fruit punch as a day later, every single chest hair fell out.  

2. Your child does not need to bring extra candy to share with the class.  I know what you may be thinking, "But my child does not get enough candy at Halloween time."  Wait, no, you're not thinking that?  Hmm, I wonder why.  Could it be because on top of the treats they get trick or treating and on top of the treats they get from the room moms/teacher, many parents feel obligated to send MORE treats to class?  We don't need more treats.  You could, however, send a sugar I.V. for each child so that we could simply pump pixie sticks directly into their blood stream.  The I.V. needles should be "candy needles" made of a sharpened Lick-O-Stick sticks.  

3. Please do not stop your child during the school parade and take thousands of pictures while the entire school waits for you.  This isn't the Olson twins on the red carpet.  We don't need your kid making every kissy faced pose for you while the flash bulbs pop.  In the meantime, the entire line comes to a halt and we all stand and watch as you posterize your kid.  Take your costumed kid to Kiddy Candids and have them take all the pictures you want.  
**Note: If your child is in fact an Olson twin, this rule does not apply.  It also does not apply to the following:  Hannah Montana, the Jonas Brothers, children that have been a "Wednesday's child", children that have a real arrow through their skull and not just that lame fake bent ones and orphans that have had blood transfusions.

4.  If your child happens to have a male First Grade teacher named Abe, send a large Milky Way bar as a peace offering for dealing with your hyperactive kid during the most deliriously cuckoo day of the year.  No wait, better make it one of those super sized, double Twix bars.  Fun size or half sized are for hobos and midgets and will simply not do.  I like my candybars man sized.

5.  Please send your kid's costume on their body and not in a plastic bag for them to put on in the bathroom.  I am not going to help your kid zip, snap or velcro anything in the bathroom and I will hardly have time to do it in the classroom.  Even though I have extensive experience as a Hollywood  makeup artist, I will not have the time to put fake blood on your kid's face.  If your kid does not have a costume, do not send them as Adam or Eve, even though there are plenty of large leaves on the ground at this time of year.

Thank you for support during this critical time of learning for your child.


Your child's teacher.

Stand up of the day: Stephen Lynch - Halloween

If you are unfamiliar with the tunes of Stephen Lynch, then you are actually probably better off.  His whole schtick is that he makes hilarious songs and his voice is actually quite good.  He is without a doubt one of my favorites, but sometimes his songs can be very over the top and shall we say, graphic. In other words, don't go on Youtube looking for other songs by him.  These two are relatively clean and I have only seen edited versions of his show, but I know he has some very questionable songs out there.

Here's a Lynch classic and probably my favorite so far.

Monday, September 29, 2008

A Monday night cease to exist order.

I have issued another "Cease to Exist" order for the following things.  They are on warning:

1. Celebrity birthday reports.
2. Sonic drive through commercials.
3. $40.00 flashing/light up toys at the circus.
4.  People that make small talk on elevators about the buttons.
5.  TV shows about people with tons of kids.
6. That kidney billboard on the highway with Bronco and K-Whit.
7. The soccer lines on Rice-Ekkles field.
8. The term "cougar" for older women looking for younger men.
9. People that push the dunking tank button with their hand as a joke rather than actually having the skill to hit the button with the ball.  Those people think they are funny, but they drive me insane!  You're a cheater and a quitter and I don't like cheaters or quitters.
10. Dunking booths 
11. People that make obnoxious, unfunny comments after previews in the movies loud enough for the entire audience can hear, unless of course, that person is me.  Needless to say, the comment would obviously be funny.

That last one reminds me of the time that I, on a dare (It seems as though many of my stories start like this.) went to the front of a crowded theater waiting to see a movie.  The previews hadn't started yet and people were chatting and mingling.  I cleared my throat and in a loud voice I said:

Hello, my name is Abe.  I enjoy walks in the park, happy reunions and snuggling.  I am 17 years old and single.  I look forward to watching this movie with you.

I then pointed at someone in the front row and said:

Okay, now it is your turn.  Come on up here.

The girl, absolutely horrified, slumped in her seat and hid.  Mission accomplished.

Okay, things that are listed on my cease to exist order.  Be on alert.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

A boy, a Bic razor and a vision: No eyebrows!

I did a lot of stupid things as a kid for no real reason other than to get a laugh.  It was on one such occasion that I shaved my eyebrows completely off.  

Much has been said of that fateful day.  The story has become more myth than truth.  In fact, over the years the story has been mytholized, trivialized, exaggeratized and legendaryized.  All that remains are three tidbits of truth: a boy, a razor and the backseat of a Suburban.  

I was all of 14 years old and the hairs on my chin had just started hitting puberty.  They had begun to show their timid heads and my mom had purchased me a couple of Bic razors to take care of business.  I found that I now owned a small collection of all of Bic's products: both pens and razors!  Armed with a can of Arm and Hammer shaving cream, I was ready to become a man.  

I know what your thinking, and of course, real men do not shave off their eyebrows.  I didn't say I was a man, I just said that I was ready to become a man.  There was just one juvinile episode of tomfoolery that needed to be completed and that was the shaving of the eyebrows.

I had planned and coordinated my moves for weeks.  We would be traveling south to Moab as a scout troop that summer and it would not take the entire trip to whittle the old chin eye straps.  We gathered, said a prayer for our safety (on the trip, not from my parents when I got home) and I hopped in the tail end of that Mormon-obile.  

My friends knew exactly what I was up to and they huddled around me like I was passing out candy cigarettes.  I pulled out my trusty Bic, fresh from the plastic wrap and stared at it's gleaming blade.  The driver, oblivious to my malarky, drove like the wind to our destination.  I, on the other hand, had not considered the need for any sort of lubricating cream to soften the scraping of the cutlass against my tender, tender skin.  Without hesitation, I went forward with my plan of attack anyway.

My grossed out, circle posse began groaning and squealing as small chunks of fur fell from my feathered brow into a plastic ziplock bag.  Unable to bring the vehicle to a stop on a busy section of I-15, our leader started screaming and begging me to stop from the front seat of the car.  He was absolutely stupefied that something so inanely outlandish could be taking place in the back seat of his burban.  There was nothing he could do, however, and the wads of brown shag continued to fall into their plastic resting place.

It did not take long to realize that without a creaming agent I would be mixing blood and brow.  Small sores began to appear above my brow and I felt that I was replaying a portion of Pink Floyd's "The Wall" to near perfection.  Within ten minutes, I was hairless, smooth and a bit bloody.  My friends were in hysterics, laughing aloud as I sat with a smile on my face, completely content and imperious with my bag of brow bristle.

I know what you are thinking - What a lavish and dazzling end to that story - no doubt.  And yep, you would be correct; if I never had to return to the loving arms of a mother and father, which were of course, mortified and embarrassed.  And of course, their mortification and embarrassment would have normally faded soon enough, most likely after I passed the sacrament that first week back.  But as luck would have it and to my horror, there was something I had not considered when I packed that new yellow Bic into my sack that day: We were getting our family pictures taken in less than two weeks!  Oops.

I had long bangs back in 1990.  They were almost long enough to cover where my eyebrows should have been, but not quite.  I recall my father just shaking his head in frustration as the photographer moved me around to conceal my chagrining forehead.  He tried everything from moving my head in different angles to moving me completely out of the picture.  Alas, the photos were flashed and our family portrait forever frozen in time.  I was very lucky as a 6 year old Jordan made the most adorable pose you have ever seen and for the majority of people that looked at the picture, that was the first thing they noticed.  If you look just a little closer, however, you will see a boy with a missing eyebrow or two.  

This story now lives on in Yospe infamy.  It is stuck on the walls of our wall(s) of shame, forever captured by a photograph.  Fortunately my eyebrows have grown back.  Unfortunately, it is true what they say: Once you shave a spot, the hair will grow back longer and thicker.  That is why you should never shave the insides of your nose.

Also, please add this to my list of things I probably should have never blogged about but did anyway.

Song of the Day: Tunng - Bullets

This is a unique band from the UK that uses some funky, folk sounds to create a very cool tunes.  This video is also quite unique and well worth watching.  Superb song.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Lincoln's weekend of hullabaloo and merrymaking.

Lincoln had quite an eventful weekend with much excitement and fanfare.  He deserved it though, he has been a near perfect citizen and a happy camper the last month or so.  We promised (bribed) him that if would be good that we would do something fun.

So, here is a rundown of his 3 activities of drollery and joy:

1. The circus.  Too long, too loud and too frenzied, but mostly too long.  The boys liked the elephants (for some reason they have both always been elephant freaks) and Lincoln enjoyed the motorcycles in the round cage thing.  Personally, I enjoyed the overweight, corny ringmaster singing the National Anthem while a girl in a red, white and blue swimsuit carried an American flag on the back of an elephant.  If my heart had tear ducts, it would have been dripping huge droplets.  The  amount of pride I had at that moment, knowing that I was an American watching an elephant carry a flag with a woman in a swimsuit on it's back is unmeasurable.  Fortunately, hearts don't have tear ducts.  I'd hate to have a sticky heart.

Thank you Grandpa Yospe for the tickets!

2.  The Mayan.  Yep, the Mayan.  This was actually Lincoln's reward.  He loved it and even described it as "better than the Tikki Room".  Okay, not exactly a glowing review as the Tikki room is uh... eh.  However, it was fun enough for him to continue talking about it for the rest of the day.  Now if he would have described it as "better than Splash Mountain" then we would have really had something.  The Mayan is known as having some of the most beautiful plastic trees in the world, and it's true!  They are lovely.

Thank you Grandma and Grandpa for meeting us there for lunch!

3. The U game.  Steve invited Lincoln and I to go to the U game with him and his son.  I happily obliged as this was one of the games that I did not have reserved tickets for.  Steve brought his son, who happens to be Lincoln's age, and we sat in his company suite. 

The suite is fine, just so stinkin high, with windows that seem to separate you from the action.  Lincoln and his newfound friend had a great time with all of the free treats and soda.  It is nice to sit in the suite every so often, but I would much rather sit down with the blue collar fans like myself, whooping it up and throwing a tizzy in the North end zone.  

By the way, the game was well - anti climatic.  We'll see what happens on Thursday.  It's a huge game Thursday. I'll be back with my peeps in the Red Zone.  I have a seat all by myself, but I make friends with fellow Ute fans rather easily.  Get ready new, yet to be met Ute fan peeps in the North end zone... Get ready for the Cheeseboy!

Thanks Steve for the tickets and the ride!

Go Utes! 5-0!

After today, salad will never be the same.

Friday, September 26, 2008

The real reason why people in the HR department are such inept twits.

After dealing with various HR departments from various companies and government agencies, I have determined that HR workers have to be the most inept, unavailing, slothful folks on the planet.  My recent run in with HR involved missing money from my paycheck, several calls and much frustration.  It seems that HR reps have a very difficult time making a decision or making a call back.  The absolute worst was Convergies, a company that prides themselves on customer service.  It seemed as if the Convergies projects would send their worst employees to work in HR.  It is for this reason that I was supremely thrilled that Toby left The Office.  

Where do HR people come from?  My guess is that they all come from the same lost tribe of Israel.  Kinda like if you are from the tribe of Levi, you are automatically a Bishop or something like that.  If you are from the tribe of Naphati you are automatically a dimwitted HR worker. It was a for-ordination by God.  In the pre-existance God pulled these people aside and said, "You are just not going to cut it in the normal job market.  Sorry Joe, but you're going to have to work in HR."

The scary thing is that these same boneheads that are running our HR departments here on earth will be running Heaven HR.  I can already imagine my first phone conversation with an Heaven HR rep:

Celestialized Abe:  Hello?  Yes, I was wondering why I lost 3 vacation days on my last paycheck.  I didn't go on vacation.

Telestial HR rep:  Please hold while I ask.  [Motab playing on the headset.]  Ten minutes later... HR decided that Celestial folks don't need more vacation days.

CA: What do you mean?  Why weren't we notified of this change?

HR:  It was in the email bulletin last June.

CA:  So how many days do we get then?

HR: Please hold while I ask. [David Archuletta singing "Imagine" on the headset.]  Umm, you get infinity amount for the next infinity amount of days.

CA:  That's weird because I swear we were promised more than that.  Can I talk to your manager?

HR: Please hold.  [Osmond Family Christmas plays on the headset.] We don't have managers in heaven.  But you can talk to Frank if you want.

CA: Who's Frank?  

HR: He's my eternal companion.  

CA:  Will he be able to get my vacation days back?

HR: Please hold. [A Kurt Bestor/Thurl Bailey duet blares through the headset.]  No, he can not get those back for you.  

CA: Did you work at Convergies while you were on earth? 

HR: How did you know?

CA:  I thought I recognized your voice.  One more question, can you send me a copy of the harassment policy?  Dead Cindy Crawford will not stop bothering me.

HR:  Sure.  What kingdom are you in again? 

CA: Celestial

HR:  We can't bring it to you then.  You are going to have to come down and get it.

CA:  Forget it.  

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

A couple of entertainment tidbits. (It's late, it's been a long day and this is all I got tonight. Sorry)

I watched my first episode of Dancing With The Stars last night.  I doubt I will ever travel down that crooked path of D list stars ever again.  Besides a couple of attractive ladies that were easy on the eyes (Julianne Hough and Brooke Burke), there was really nothing redeeming about this complete joke of a show.  A total waste of time.

Someone needs to tell Hair McGee, Julianne's brother on the left, that he might want to hit puberty already.  Maybe he could take some testosterone pills or something to help him along?   Hey blondie, Jon Bon Jovi's sissy younger brother called and he would like his hairstyle back.  (Haha, I love those "so and so called and would like whatever" jokes.)  

How about combining Dancing With The Stars with The Biggest Loser?  I would definitely tune in to see Kristie Alley have a dance off with Louie Anderson.  Or better yet, a mascot Dancing With the Stars!  Go Jazz Bear!  The mascots would actually probably be slightly more well known than the so called "stars".  I would watch a mascot ballroom dance competition.  

I am actually, and this is no lie, quite a dancer.  Just ask anyone that has seen some of my moves at a wedding reception, karaoke contest or in a back alley dance off.  I have these jiving moves that just come to me in dreams.  I wake up, write them down and then go back to sleep.  Months later, when the situation is just right, I break out some of the most provocative, passionate, killer moves you have ever witnessed at said reception, karaoke contest or dance off.  

I was once challenged to a dance off by a former enemy of mine.  Figuring that my dance moves would permanently scar his fragile sense of self, I decided to play it easy on him.  I still shattered my dance shoes with my insane moves and 3 years later he was selling cell phones for a living at a kiosk in the mall.  I blame myself for his situation because of my awesomeness on the dance floor.

I have been meaning to give the krunk a try.  Either krunk or riverdance. 

Off topic, (at least hopefully off topic) but I saw that Clay Aiken admitted what we all have assumed for years.  In case you were wondering, he admitted that his song about being invisible is actually about stalking MEN!

If I was invisible
Then I could just watch you in your room
If I was invincible
I'd make you mine tonight
If hearts were unbreakable
Then I could just tell you where I stand
I would be the smartest man
If I was invisible
(Wait..I already am)

After listening to this song a couple times, I actually think he is maybe referring to America's oiliest fitness guru, Richard Simmons.  

Simmons/Aiken 08!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Lincoln v. Door - Door Wins (Warning: Very gruesome!)

We put Lincoln to sleep at 8:15 last night.  Calder went to bed shortly after that.  

Calder, who absolutely adores his brother, always calls for him to come give him a kiss.  Lincoln always obliges.  

It was dark in Calder's room, but Lincoln was able to kiss Calder and as he left he ran head first into the edge of the open door.  

Blood poured down the side of his face as he squealed in anguish.  At very first sight it was obvious he needed stitches.  Once we got the blood to stop, we took Calder to our kindhearted neighbors and off we went to the Sugarhouse Kids Care.  

There was absolutely no one at the Kids Care last night.  We may have been the only ones there.  The nurse came out and put a numbing jell on his forehead and some plastic over it.  (As seen on the below left.)  Thank goodness the days of shots to numb the area seem to be a thing of the past.

Lincoln seemed very groggy, but very brave through the entire process.  It takes 20 minutes for the gel to start working and soon enough the nurse came out to get us. 

The Pediatrician was very kind and she asked Lincoln lots of questions to keep his mind off the sewing of the wound.  He held his mom's hand firmly as in and out the stitches went.  He did not make a single grimace or whimper during the entire procedure.  Amazingly enough, we were in and out of there in under an hour.

Cathi encouraged me to take a few pictures of the action but I refused.  Snapping a few snapshots while a tiny needle travels in and out of my son's cracked forehead was not something I wanted to bother the doctor with.  I did, however, ask the doctor to put her fingerprints in Lincoln's scrapbook along with her autograph.  We also invited her over for cookies and milk.  Got to keep memories of everything!

Unfortunately, Lincoln had to get blue stitches as they were the standard.  We asked for red but red was not an option.  Stupid BYU fans are everywhere.

As we pulled back into the driveway, Lincoln was nearly asleep.  I went across the street to get Calder and he was very anxious to see how his brother is doing.  He burst through the front door looking for Lincoln while yelling "LINKY OK?  LINKY OK?"  If that was not a standard "ahh" moment from a cheesy sitcom, I don't know what is.

Finally, I tucked Lincoln into bed and we both had a hearty laugh when I said, "It seems like we already did this once tonight."  It was certainly the most action Lincoln had ever seen after he had already been tucked into bed once.

Lincoln was a little nervous on our drive to get the stitches.  I couldn't promise him that it wasn't going to hurt as both times I have had stitches it hurt like heck.  I told him on the way, that I had received stitches in my head when I was in Kindergarten.  What I didn't tell him was that they couldn't hold me still, so they were forced to strap me to a gurney and place a towel over my head while I screamed "GET ME OUT OF THIS TRAP!  GET ME OUT OF THIS TRAP!"  I did, however, tell him the rest of the story on our way home.  I think he thought I was a pansy.

Only one week until he gets all 5 of them out.

Monday, September 22, 2008

I hereby grant my first ever "Coolest Person I Know" award to none other than my cousin Tim.

If you read my blog frequently, you know that I have a cousin, Tim. He may be the coolest person I know.  I was fortunate enough to be friends with him a bit in high school and we even had a seminary together once.  Our seminary teacher was a total flake and I believe Tim and I were kicked out of class together more than once.  When we got together it was often a matter of one-upmanship, who could be the most outrageous or sarcastic.  This did not play well with our seminary teacher and our excuse of "it's okay, we're cousins" never played well with him.  I can honestly say that was the only class that I have ever been in trouble.  

Before my wife and I started dating, Tim had a biology class with Cathi in which, and I'm not sure about this, they dissected a frog together.  It was only a prelude of things to come with his cousin.  Not that I have ever dissected a frog with Cathi, but we have had it in our plans for awhile.  (Speaking of which, I was watching a Muppet Movie with Lincoln yesterday about Kermit as a baby frog.  The main story line was that Kermit was being held captive by an evil biology teacher that is planning on having his students dissect him.  I am not making that up.  That was really the plot.  Just a tad disturbing.)

I look up to this man for several reasons, the least of which is that I literally look up to him.  (He is 6-5  or something.)  Nevertheless, I give you yet another list.  This is a list of why my cousin Tim may be the coolest and most interesting person I know.  

1.  Tim loved and honored the movie "American Movie".  We watched it together about 8 years ago.  I knew he would love it as it takes a peculiar sense of humor to fully appreciate it.  As Uncle Bill would acknowledge, "It's alright, it's okay, there's something to live for.  Jesus told me so!"  

2.  Tim has some serious talent when it comes to writing and photography.  

3.  Tim continues to be a staunch Ute fan in spite of transferring and graduating from Utah State.  He is also a very highly ranked poster on Utefans.net.  Look for him under the alias of "Dwight Shr-UTE."  

4.  Tim is an active Democrat and helps me post on our other blog, McCaint 2008.  Additionally, he just saw Barack Obama in person.  Lucky person.

5. Tim has impeccable taste in music and years ago actually referred me to some great sounding bands.  He continues to provide awesome suggestions.  He continues to attend extremely neat concerts, while I sit at home on my pathetic bottom.

6.  His job is incredibly interesting sounding... "Fish Biologist".  It may actually not be as interesting as it sounds, but it sure sounds interesting.  

7. During the NBA finals in Salt Lake, he used the Barney costume and went downtown to where the festivities were.  During an NBC fly-over, there is Tim, dressed in the Barney costume, waving to the camera.  Perhaps the best thing anyone has ever done with the costume. 

8. He has a pony tail and beard.  He has been called "Jesus" by several children in his ward.  He has even posed as Jesus for an artist.  Don't believe me?  Check this out.  Oh, and let us not forget the time that the police were called on him when he entered my Grandma's house while she was in the hospital to leave her flowers.

9. I wonder if he remembers this - While we were on our missions (he in California, me in Pennsylvania) I was somehow able to get his phone number.  I have no idea how, I don't remember.  It was quite remarkable that I was able to get it though.  I called him one evening and he was absolutely dumbfounded that I was on the other line.  I think at first he was a little ticked that I called, but after we chatted a bit, he was cool with it.  

10. Finally, and perhaps most impressive, about 7 years ago (Sorry Tim, can't remember how long ago it was.) he rode his bike from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean over the course of a summer.  By himself.  For those of you that are impressed that I was able to run a marathon by myself, imagine riding your bike for 4 months, with absolutely no company.  The most amazing thing to me is that he found time to locate wards on his route and attend church.  I still would like to know the answer to this question - Did you wear spandex shorts to church?

There you have it, a biography of sorts on my good friend and cousin Tim.  What a great man.  

Hopefully, I can make this an ongoing feature on the old Blog O' Cheese.  Certainly there many people that I find interesting and cool enough to qualify for this award.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

I am now famous enough to give my bodily fluid to Calvin Klein for research. (And a letter to Calvin about my new fragrance.)

I once put on, as a total fluke, something called "McGraw" cologne at the mall.  Apparently the men that choose to wear it want to smell like a dirty, raw, sexy cowboy.  After putting it on, I had a horrible splitting headache for the rest of the day.  I can't wear that crap.  Sorry Timmy, your cologne sucks.

Now that I am a bonafide blogging superstar, my agent and I feel I finally have the leverage to contact the fragrance companies to pitch my new cologne.  I just sent my first email to Calvin Klein.  Below you will find it's contents.

[email sent tonight at 10:30 PM]

Dear Calvin, Mr. Klein or Cal,

I am a blogging superstar and people, mostly my wife, tell me I have a great natural smell.  Once, after I got done working out, my wife told me that I smelled like a sweaty bull moose.  Now that's hearty and rugged!  I would like to sell you the secret recipe to my scent that will drive the ladies wild and line your pockets with a great deal of cash.  You will make so much money, you will be able to line the cash lining in your pockets with another lining of cash.  It's just that good.

Besides my online superstardom, I am also a First Grade teacher.  I have also been told that a man teaching the first grade is incredibly sexy.  I have been told this by mostly women!  It may be the Elmers glue, or the graphite pencils, or the First Grade finger goobers that naturally get rubbed on my shirt on a daily basis that make me smell so ambrosial;  but most likely it's a mix of the three plus my own sweat that gives me that rugged, stylish, uncouth odor that will simply fly off the shelves.  

I noticed that you have a cologne called "man".  I am a man.  You also have "Obsession".  Many of my blog readers have an obsession with me, or at least I like to think they do, or at least that is the way I have built it up in my mind.  Let us not forget your famed "One". One just so happens to be the same number of times I have been to Canada!  Coincidence?  I think not!  I suggest we name my/our new cologne "Crazed Infatuation".  

My dad also knows Paige Davis and Cindy Crawford, so if you want, they can do a few ads for us.  Cindy says she will pretty much do anything for free nowadays, but Paige will need to work it into her schedule.  I also may have access to Wilford Brimley but I will have to make some calls. 

Please give me a call at your earliest convenience to discuss this most excellent business opportunity and improve your own bodily odors!  


PS - My/our cologne will be available in a spritz or a breakthrough ultra-thick, moose or foaming gel (Still in development). 

As soon as I receive a response, I will post it on the Blog O' Cheese.  (Still no response from Dr. Phil, Tyra Banks or the Big O.)

Movie Review: Son of Rambo

I liked the idea of a couple of 12 year old boys remaking Rambo, so I checked this movie out from the library.  Wise move on my part.  The movie has heart, some very funny moments and the acting is terrific. The rebellious, troublemaking kid on the left is just fantastic.

Even though the story takes place in England, it reminded me of when I was 12 and my buddies and I got our hands on a video camera.  We would lower the hoop in my backyard and tape ourselves having a slam dunk contest.  Somewhere that footage exists and if uncovered, you will see the incredible air I could get back in the day.  I think I was able to jump so high because I was able to pump my shoes up.  The more I pumped, the higher I could jump.

Even though there are no self pumping shoes in the flick, everyone should see Son of Rambo.  There is some very minor swearing and a couple of the twelve-year-olds smoke cigarettes.  On a scale of 1-10, I'd give it an 8.  On a scale of 1-5, I'd give it a 4.  On a scale of 1-100, I'd give it an 80.  On a scale of .01 - .10, I'd give it a .08.  It's simple math really.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

I don't care what it looks like, I will take ANY win over Air Force - any day.

As history has proven, when Utah plays Air Force the only thing that matters is eking out a victory.  Lets look at the recent past:

Last year - Air Force stops Utah on 4 consecutive goal line plays in the closing seconds to secure the victory.  Result:  I threw up on the way to my car.

2006 - It takes a last second field goal by Louie Sakoda to secure a 17-14 win.  Result:  Since the season was kinda a wash by then anyway, I gave my friend a half hearted high five.

2003 - The game goes into triple OT and ends when QB/TE Ben Moa dumps a "jump pass" into the end zone for a game winning 2 point conversion.  Result:  Much jubilation and shouting around the household.  I also may have pooped my pants for a second time.

2001 - The Utes drive in the final seconds, ready to at least tie with a field goal when QB Lance Rice inexplicably runs out the clock while looking for a receiver.  Result:  I swore like I have never swore before.  I still need to talk to my bishop about that night.

2000 - I recall sitting comfortably in my Rice-Eccles seats at halftime, enjoying a 35-14 lead.  Of course, the Utes blew it and Air Force ran off 30 unanswered points in the second half to win.  Result:  I swore I would never cheer for a McBride led team again.  Oh, and I also did something I promised myself I'd never do again, no matter how bad things got - I boo'd my own team.

1995 - The Utes scored 21 points in the final three minutes to win the game 21-17 or something like that.  Result: I was on my mission during that one, but when I heard about this legendary comeback, I nearly burnt myself with my cigarette and spilled my coffee all over my lap.

Like I said, this series is insane and you know that the cadets never, and I mean never, quit.  When the Utes play them, I throw out all the stats, the records and what is "supposed to happen."  Just win, even it is completely ugly like today, and I am thoroughly satisfied.  

People need to stop comparing this team to BYU.  This is a good team in their own right and they are only getting better.  We'll see what happens on November 22, but in the mean time, enjoy the ride!   Our defense may be the best I have ever seen at the U and that includes 2004.

Now, if only Brian Johnson could learn to throw the ball away.  

Go Utes! 4-0!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Aye - I lo'e "talk like ye pirate day" and me parrot confers.

Argh, "Happy International Talk Like A Pirate Day" to yers!  Me matie, Larvie Lincoln came home froms his school -aye- topped up as a decked out scur'ie swashbuckler.  -Arrrr - I'e been considrin' not writtin' this o'erdramatic crappola -eye - me just couldn't help myself - arr - Where be me bottle of rum?  -Ahoy- Plus, me just couldn't thank o' anything else t' write.  Garrr.

Our neighbor (Lincoln's bucko) crawled ye over tonight for yonder grub and eatin's.  T' last time she did come, we -eye- pancakes, argh.  N'Tonight we had grubs of french toast.  I tolds hers that ours family always be havin' grubs on breakfast at night and grubs on dinner in mornin'.  I also told her we be havin' liver n' onions fer grub in the mornin' if she wanted t' come o'er.  Aye, she declined.  A pence for an old man o'de sea?

[I may have confused several dialects in the writing of this nonsense.  I wanted to speak primarily in Pirate, but I believe there may be hints of other languages and other accents thrown in there for good measure.  If I have offended any pirates by my horrible Piratese grammar, please let me know.]

Also, in honor of Talk Like A Pirate Day, here is a very cool video of my favorite actor, Johhny Depp riding Pirates of the Caribbean for the first time.  Stay tuned to the very end, where he comes face to face with his own character.  Classic!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Cindy Crawford is STILL in love with me.

My father gave me a very special gift this past Sunday... if it were 1989.  Don't get me wrong, I am very grateful.  However, had he given me this gift in 1989, I would have been considered much more cool to my peers.  I especially like the way she handprinted my name "Abe".  I think she had to have put some extra thought into it.

As you may be able to see, I was too lazy to even try and figure out how to hook up our scanner.  So, I simply took a picture of a picture.  That would also explain the backwards writing.

It turns out, Cindy Crawford is 43 years old now. You can kind of tell from her handwriting.  With her age, her finger dexterity is deteriorating and her hand eye coordination out the window, it is difficult for her to write coherently.  Sometimes I feel sorry for the elderly former super models.

In case you were wondering, my dad got this picture the night he and my mom went to dinner with Cindy Crawford, and what is really strange is that she is not even the most famous person that they have had dinner with.

I still can't get past that enormous mole on her face. I mean, I have a small mole on my nose, but nothing compared to the magafold skin nevus on her upper lip.   

Speaking of moles, last year I had a mom in my class with the same tiny mole on the side of her nose.  A few of the other moms told me that she looked like a "female version of you."  I thought it was just because we had identical moles, but at second glance, I realized she actually did look a lot like me, which was a very strange realization.  Fortunately, she was not bad looking, which I was grateful for.  It would have been awful if a group of moms told me that I bore a strong resemblance to a homely, dowdy, diva dedicated to sinful ugly wretchedness.  That could have been a real blow to the old self esteem. 

Song of the Day: Okkervil River - Lost Coastlines

One of my top 10 favorite bands, I'd say - ever.  They just released their 4th album on Friday, The Stand Ins.  Got it last night and I have listened to it 4 or 5 times already.  This song is more cool than my Grandma's plastic, gnome filled, plant bubble that is sitting in her kitchen nook!  Check it out.  (Sorry, no video yet.)

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Giving blood with Mr. Needles and hoping that it goes to a dwarfish orphan in need.

As I referenced yesterday in my timeline of fun, I gave blood.  I had the geek of geeks sticking me with needles and telling me about the many bird houses he had built in his backyard.  This schmo was also a bit meddlesome, inquiring about every aspect of my life.  

While he was looking my questionnaire that details every disease I have ever had, he asked me, "It says you take Prevacid.  What is that for?"  Picking up on the fact that this guy was a total nitwit, I responded, much to his horror, "It's actually for my hemorrhoids."  He turned white and looked like he had actually given too much blood.  

Yes, I actually did say that and yes, I did tell him it was a joke and Prevacid is really for acid reflux. Unfortunately, my joke had unintended consequences in that it gave Mr. Needle a green light to joke away.

When he poked me with the needle and got the blood flowing he asked, "How does that feel on a scale of 1 - 10?".  I said "fine" and he replied, "So, like a 6?"  He followed that up with, "How annoying am I being on a scale from 1- 10?"

I always feel like a hero when I give blood.  I like to think that my blood always goes to poor orphans that have been abandoned by orphanages, or at the very least just regular orphans.  I like to think of the orphan I saved lying in bed, thanking God for the man that donated blood.

Of course, it has crossed my mind that my blood might have been used in a drunken, dirty, BYU fan, thieving, manslaughtering, bad breathed, tick filled, hobo.  If that is indeed the case, then my only hope is that the hobo was once a orphan.  Then I would feel a lot better about it.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A graph of my running milage the last month.

My thoughts throughout the day on this, the 16th day of September.

7:00 AM - Holy stinking poop, is it only Tuesday?  I need more sleep.

7:04 AM - [Cathi turns on light.]  I hope the kids are good today.  Please Lord, make them good today.

7:40 AM - Why does Calder always open his mouth super wide to give me a kiss?  And why does Lincoln always pout his bottom lip like he has just been slugged in the mouth?  Who taught these boys to kiss?  When they get to be 16, I should warn them not to expect the first girl they kiss to like them much longer after it.  Actually, Calder's open mouthed method may actually prove beneficial while dating.

7:55 [Getting out of the car.]  Did I really just drive to work?  I don't remember a single thing about the commute.  My mind was on total autopilot.  Very strange.  Almost Twilight Zone-ish.

8:30 - Oh boy, here they come!  Break open the floodgates of panic, someone is already crying.

8:45 - I swear I said, "Come over to the rug." at least 6 times.  Why is there a kid behind the bookshelves, one in the wet area and one wearing his coat as pants?"

10:25 - [Recess.]  We have GOT to make a new rule... NO picking up dead birds at recess with your bear hands and chasing girls with it!  There should be absolutely NO exceptions to this rule.

10:30 - I hope this kid brought an extra pack of fish crackers for the teacher.

11:00 - Who in the world is farting that horrible stench?  I wonder if one of the kids pooped their pants.  No, that's not poop scent, that is pure 6 year old fart.  

12:30 - Maybe the 9th time we line up for lunch today, no one will push, shove, butt in line or complain about someone else butting in line.

12:32 - Maybe the 12th time??

12:35 - Those are the nastiest looking teriyaki beef sticks I have ever seen.  I wonder what 3rd world country's domesticated animal that meat comes from.

12:40 - I really don't want to pry open another 4 ounce box of milk for ANYONE.

1:35 - Who is creating that repugnant, gaseous smell?  I didn't know 6 year olds could smell that putrid.

2:00 - Time to "opera man" sing EVERYTHING I say to the kids.

2:05 - Haha, I am funny.  The kids are still laughing at my angelic operetta-like voice.  I've got to do this more often.

2:15 - This joke is officially old.  I can't keep this up forever, even though they want me to.

2:30 - 1/2 hour to go.  I've got it - Heads up 7 up!

2:36 - 6 year olds are the biggest cheaters ever at Heads up 7 up.  That kid didn't even have his head down!  I'm calling him on it.

[Next time he has his head down, I touch his thumb.  I never touch thumbs.  When he lifts his head up, he immediately guesses "MR YOSPE!"  I ask him how he knew I touched his thumb.  Knowing he was caught in a lie, he responds, "Your thumb is heavier than the kids."  Okay, whatever.]

3:05 - I am just going to sit here on this chair and stare at that wall for awhile.  

3:15 - Yep, this is nice.

3:45 [Home now.]  What do you mean you just turned the key and our entire lock just fell off the door?

3:46 - Does Costco sell door locks?

4:15 - [At the Stake Center.]  At the time, signing up to give blood sounded like a good idea.

4:35- Why in the world is this dork taking my blood talking to me about making bird houses?

4:45 - I wonder if they will let me keep this squeezy thing if I simply ask them?

5:00 - What color arm band?  What color arm band?  Is there any choice that is more important in life?  I wonder if they have one with a Star of David so I can honor my ancestors.

5:30 - [At Home Depot] Why is it that every time I pull out a shopping cart, I get 5 more with it? Are they all connected by some giant magnet? I don't need five connected shopping carts, I simply need one with working wheels.  

5:35 - Which of these 97 aisles has door locks on it?

5:55 - Who would have guessed it was aisle 91?

6:30 - If putting on a new door lock is difficult without instructions, then you may refer to me as the "smartest man alive."  

6:31 - I wonder which kid had that rancid gas today.

So, tell me everyone, how was your day?

Monday, September 15, 2008

How was I able to marry Cathi?... I still have no idea.

I was recently asked by a woman how in the world I landed such a cute wife.  A strange thing to ask, I know.  But I guess the truth stings a little.  However, the truthful truthiness is I really have no idea how I ended up with a brunette bombshell with adorable dimples and a killer smile;  a girl that really should have not even given me a second look.  I have concocted a few good theories of thought:
  • She knew I would make her wealthy beyond her wildest dreams.  
  • She knew that I would begin a blog that is read by literally dozens of readers a day.
  • She had a strange fetish for guys that eat strange things for attention.
  • She thought I had a "sweet spirit".
  • For once, "I look for a guy with a good sense of humor" was actually true!
  • Her Great Aunt told her that she thought I was a "nice boy".
  • She got jealous when Cindy Crawford would not stop calling me!
  • She felt sorry for my sorry self.
  • She knew our kids would make her laugh, which they do.
  • My movie-star, sizzling thigh muscles.
  • My obvious sense of style.
  • The way that I never opened the door for her because I thought that was stupid.
  • My thick, swarthy, luxuriant arm hair.
  • I promised her that I would get some "work done".  
Clearly, I have no idea how I, a pea-brained, neanderthal geek, that once shaved his eyebrows completely off for a laugh (another blog for another day), ended up with such a smoking hot, stunning beauty.  I actually don't care how I got her, I am just grateful to wake up in the morning, look over at my beautiful wife and give God a divine, metaphorical God high five for how truly blessed I am.  

So thank you, person that asked the strange question about my ability to attract a highly attractive female.  Thank you for reminding me how lucky I am.

Song of the Day: Coldplay - Viva La Vida

I've been a fan of Coldplay since their first album.  Despite having my manhood questioned by popular media and movies because of my love of their music, I have continued to be a staunch supporter.  I am living proof that you can have natural affections toward the opposite sex and still enjoy a good Coldplay tune now and again.  And no, I don't shave my chest.  And no, I haven't seen Mama Mia!... yet.

As most of you already know, here is one of the best songs from their latest album.  If you have not heard it yet, you are probably living in a cave.  Oh, and if any of my readers want to give me a free ticket to the November concert in thanks for my providing this blog, I will be happy to oblige.  What a better way to celebrate a huge Utah win over those self righteous, overconfident cougars?

Pink Floyd member Richard Wright dies at age 65.

The greatest keyboardist known to man died today.  This man may have had more influence on many of today's keyboard heavy bands than any other that has lived. We'll see you on the dark side of the moon!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Costco is killer good EXCLAMATION POINT!!!

I love Costco.  I love everything about it, from the warming fans that blow on you as you enter, to the giant boxes of Capri Sun in the back.  The place is like a grandiose welcome mat to our town and it lies just a couple blocks away.  But the best part of Costco is that Costco loves me back.  We have a give and take relationship.

Entering Costco feels like you are entering a special club for even more special members.  However it is the only club you will find in which the "bouncer" is in a wheelchair.  Still, pulling out that plastic and flashing it to the worker makes me feel like I am in a place where I am loved.

Once into the swanky establishment, you will find that you are surrounded by a multitude of various objects for sale.  It's like they pull all the good crap to the front so that it is the first thing you see.  Once you have passed the giant bins full of winter coats, lycra body suits, gas fire places and Disneyland discount tickets, you are ready for a free sample or two.

Of course, before you get to the samples you must first pass through the mounds of clothing piled 40 slacks high.  There is ALWAYS a worker, eying the fallen stacks, ready to refold and replace, swearing under their breath.  "Stupid kids, I just stacked those overalls six times and with one toddler finger my teetering tower falls!"  

Which reminds me, I can never work at the Gap due to my inane folding skills.  I can't refold anything to save my life.  At Costco, I dig and excavate those towers until I finally find my size.  Of course, you are unable to try the clothing on at Costco, so I must just hold it up to my body and eye it.  But the worst part is refolding those things!  The pants at Costco are harder to fold than a state map.  I can just never remember how the stupid creases went and I become stymied by their complex crinkles.  I finally just give up and throw it in a heap on top of the pile.  I can usually feel the hot breath of the Costco folder bearing down on me as her anger boils over.  I can hear her thoughts, "Stupid men, can't fold worth a crap!  Makes me do all the folding for them."

Without a doubt the highlight of the Costco trip is the sample day.  I love the samples, all except the lady giving away the super fiber crackers that no one ever wants.  I feel bad for that old lady.  "Would you like a fiber bar?"  she always asks as I walk by.  I give her the obligatory "no thanks" nod, knowing that "fiber bar" really means "rock in bottom of my stomach bar".  I feel bad for her though.  She is rejected more in one day than a BYU coed is in a lifetime.

The popular old ladies are the ones that have the good stuff.  Cheese, pasta, chocolate bars, nut mixes.  These are senior citizens that I am infatuated with.  These beautiful wrinkled ladies must feel like the prom queen again with all the people lined up to see them.  They usually can't even keep their little paper cups filled!  
What makes me really laugh is when there is an actual line for a sample that is not quite done.  I can just imagine what these people are thinking, "I don't really have anywhere to go on a Saturday afternoon, so I think that I will just stand here like a dope and twiddle my thumbs while I wait for my half inch square of miniature cheesecake to come out of that tiny microwave."

It is always a good idea to take your kids with you to sample day.  You can usually get two or three extra tidbits of goodness that way.  My spiel to the ancient hands handling the cups of pretzels usually goes something like this:

"Hmm, these look good.  Now what is this?"

"It's called pretzels sir."

"Yes, hmm, I think I have heard of those.  Well, I guess I will be giving this a try."

[Looking at Calder]  "Calder, you like Pretzels?  Yes?  Okay."

"I guess I better get him one too."  

Of course, I wait until I am around the corner to give Calder his one pretzel and then down the rest like the pig that I am.

I love how they cut all the samples with scissors.  Whoever thought of this is a pure genius.  Nothing slices through bread like a pair of double blades.  They actually probably use scissors so the insane ladies don't murder the more insane people waiting for their bite size portion of cracker covered with artichoke dip.   Those ladies always already seem slightly on edge.  Who knows what damage they could do with a knife!

What a better way to finish a perfect day than with a $1.50 hotdog and drink with 3,000 other Costco lovers?  Costco, you're the king of cool and you shall always have a special place in my heart.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Pagans in the park.

Today was quite the day at Murray Park.  As I entered the park, I noticed that there was quite the hubbub at the ol' middle mezzanine.   The stinging stench of incense filled the air like smoke filling the uh, air.  It actually smelled like there was a forrest of giant incense-stick redwoods that were burning like ragweed.  As I got closer, I became aware that I had entered the dark lord death zone known as the Pagan/Wicca conference.

What is interesting is that they were selling all sorts of Pagan home decor such as rugs, curtains and blankets.  I guess they took a cue from their Amish brotheren... People will pay a fortune for a hand made Pagan quilt!  I swear I saw Paige Davis in a black shirt and kilt wondering around, looking for some charming new decor. 

I am not sure what the connection is between Pagans and all their doltish rituals.  I wonder if, 200 years ago, there were a group of guys drinking beer in a barn.  I think their conversation may have gone something like this:

Billy Joe:  I donst believe in God anymore.  (I am guessing that they said donst back in 1808.)

Edward Hoedigger:  I have known it.  I feel the same as thine.

Well, what shall we do to benefit us?

I am not sure, but the best I can thinkest that we can do is to wear black tee shirts with wizards on them, burn stinky sticks that burnst like the bear urine and bang on drums while we danceth with hula hoops and the like.  

Thine thoughts make total sense.

And thus, it begun.  They have been meeting in parks on Saturdays ever since.

If you were wondering, I made it out of the park without harm.  Wiccas are generally gutless pansies.  However, I am sure that all of the 2nd hand incense smoke will do wonders for my lungs.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Man v. Wild - Since when did life and death situations become so -yawn- boring?

I am watching Man v. Wild right now and I can tell that Bear Grills has run out of places to survive in.  This episode focusses on "the prairies of South Dakota".    I just watched 15 minutes of him walking through ten solid miles of field. Not quite as riveting as the time that he dove naked into a melted Alaskan glacier or ate a chunk of rotting zebra in Africa.  (Dove?  Doove?  Doved?  Isn't a dove a kind of bird?  I am so confused.)

In one pathetically clumsy episode this season, Bear attempts to get honey from a bee's hive.  He ends up getting stung right above the eye.  For the rest of the episode he plops around like the elephant man with a backpack.  His face completely swells up and he can hardly see.  That was actually quite entertaining.

Given that Bear has traversed through and excavated almost every corner of the world, he has limited himself to the surviving the mundane, unscathed, sleepy wilds of South Dakota.  In future seasons, I look forward to him "surviving" the following treacherous ranges:

1.  Spending the night under an I-15 underpass.
2.  Exploring the depths of "Hobbitville" (AKA - Allen Park)
3.  Finding his way out of a McDonalds Playplace.  Having to make a survival fire in tube #5 using the rubber on the bottom of his shoes his old belt buckle.
4.  Surviving a single day teaching the 6 year olds in my classroom.
5.  Finding himself a castaway on a Norwegian cruise line, unable to find a decent meal on the Ledo deck.  Fortunately, he is able to locate the glass elevator.
6.  Finding his way out of the Pirates of the Caribbean ride after Disneyland has closed down.  I can just imagine him wading through the waist high waters.

Just in case the producers have not considered these survival situations yet, I have emailed this list to them.  I think we all know that we can look forward to seeing at least a couple of these ideas used during the upcoming season. 

Thursday, September 11, 2008

A timeline of the many tortures that I have put my body through.

I was not always a runner.  In fact, I have a sordid and erratic history with various exercises before I discovered that I enjoyed running outdoors.  I give you a timeline, if you please...

2000 - Three years of marriage and laziness will begin to chug on a few pounds.  When I first noticed my belly expanding, I panicked and we soon inherited my parents decade old stationary bike.  I began peddling my way to sweet freedom from the fat; or so I thought.

I recall that our bike actually had a book rack that my parents had purchased so that you could work out and read at the same time.  It was quite a novel idea, but unfortunately reading became very difficult do to the fact that you were bouncing up and down the seat and you did not have a page turner.  The stationary boring bike workout lasted about a month and then I was done with it.

2001 - My wife went through a period in which she was punching, kicking and kie-bo-ing her way to a better body.  Given that my weight was still gaining steam at a moderate pace, I decided to give it a try.   

My legs would just not bend that high and my kicks looked more like I was trying to get a wet gummy bear off my shoe.  Even though I punched with great authority, I felt like a weakling in comparison to the women on the video.  Further, if you had seen my little dance, my attempts to keep up with the video, and my sky high kicks, you would have rolled with laughter.

2002, or sometime in the past, I am not sure - I became desperate and that is when I purchased the ab rocker electronic shock system.  Sitting on the couch with electric currents running through your belly is of course the absolute best method.  The pounds just slithered away.  

2003 - From the Sharper Image, I purchased a cheap stair climber for $100.  I would step on that thing with such force that it would get unbearably hot and the springs would melt.  I went through 2 of these before I decided that a decent stair climber would probably cost more than 100 bucks.

2004 - This is the year that I went through a phase in which would pull on giant rubber bands.  The workout bands were cheap and they did provide quite a workout.  One evening I had one end of the band knotted around a door knob while the other end was attached to my leg.  I began doing leg lifts when the cord snapped and gave me a very deep, sharp bruise on the back of my leg.  I began to wail in pain.  When Cathi rushed in to see why I was in agony, I simply said, "I think I am too strong for these cords!"  

It took 3 full months for that slash in my leg to heal.

2005 - This is the year that I purchased the Gazelle from Sears.  It turns out that this has been a fantastic piece of workout equipment with one exception:  It is really, really lame.  How can I tell anyone that I have been working out on a Gazelle?  I do have some pride left.  

Let us not forget that at one point during these years, I was thrown off the treadmill in a fit of rage... by the treadmill.  The machine required quite a bit of repair, for which I was grateful that Cathi performed.  I also attempted Yoga at some point.  I was frustrated that I could not place my toes in the small of my back or my legs behind my head.  

I finally learned that running was my thing in 2007, and thank goodness I did.  These experimental body makeovers needed to come to an end for the sake of my body.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Ball crawls and other scary stories to tell in the dark... of a McDonald's Playland.

My Song of the Day reminded me of a time in my youth when I was entrapped in a ball crawl at Liberty Park.  Once that bell rang, you had 15 minutes to jump, slide and dive through a couple thousand air filled plastic balls.  My family's enjoyment with the ball crawl instantly ended one warm afternoon in which my four year old younger brother dove in head first, only to resurface minutes later with a handful of drippy, droopy, poopy diaper. He had found his treasure. I don't believe my Mother ever let us trifle in a public, ball-filled latrine again.  Nor did I want to.  Even for a ten year old, that was extraordinarily gross and it was burnt forever into my consciousness.  

Do ball crawls even still exist?  I haven't seen a true ball crawl in years.  Remember that ginormous ball crawl in the funhouse at Lagoon?  Heaven knows what was crawling around at the bottom of that thing!  I once reached deep down into the pit and felt what I believed to be a jello mold.  As time progressed and I became more knowledgeable, I believe what I really touched was either a tub of melted down jelly bracelets or a discarded breast implant.  

My buddy once said he found ten bucks in that cesspool of plasticity.  Therefore, with every visit, I would take a deep breath and navigate the depths of the germ invested swamp.  I never found ten bucks, but I undoubtably contracted several colds and I think perhaps hepatitis B.  That reminds me, I need to be retested.  

The theory of the ball crawl is that kids will enjoy crawling around in a large vat filled with balls.  Good theory, but kids will pretty much crawl around in anything.  They could have opened a sesame seed crawl at the local park and the line would have gone around the block.  The balls just seemed the most sanitary option and kids would not be shaking seeds out of the ears days after the crawl.

The ball crawl funland has been replaced today by water playthings like the giant water ball at the zoo or the fountains at the Gateway.  I am sure this is for the best.  Parents would much rather see their snotty nosed kids touch a giant, water covered ball than see their snotty nosed kids diving head first into a group of plastic balls that are covered in the snot of a child that is not their own.   - It's the water makes it okay -  it dilutes the snot.  Plus, they must put chlorine in those things, right?

This entire discussion that I am having with myself reminds me of another story. When Lincoln was about 3 years old, he went to McDonalds with his Grandma Yospe.  While the Grandparents ordered the usual cholesterol busters, they allowed Lincoln to play in the tubes of the playland.  In a moment of desperate need, he was not able to find his way out in time and completely sticky'd the inside of a tube... with urine.  My mom said that she could see kids crawl through it while he just stood there and screamed.  Apparently, they could also see the urine just pouring out of the side of the tube.  Once Lincoln was able to navigate his way out of the maze of toddler terror, they left, food in hand.  They were not sticking around to see the fallout of that situation.  However, I am sure that the other parents were very appreciative of Lincoln's gift as their children returned to their table with sticky hands and piss stained levi knees. 

Song of the Day: Mates of State - My Only Offer

Great song here from their newest album.  This husband and wife team is super poppy, super nerdy, super dopey and super awesome.  No wonder I like them so much!  I dig it.  They have about 4-5 albums and I own them all.  Kudos to my buddy Jess for catching me on to them.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Just started watching the Muppets with Lincoln and I AM LEARNING A LOT!

We checked out The Muppet Show, season one at the library in hopes that Lincoln will watch it.

In the process of watching this horribly lame show, I have learned a thing or two.  My fond memories of this show clearly gave me a false impression of how good it actually was.  Don't believe me?  Just try and watch an entire episode without rolling your eyes at least 20 times.  Sure, we all have fond memories of the show, but the reality is that is a total load of puppet feces.  I dare you to go back and watch one!

Here is a list of the top things I have learned from watching the first season of this awful program:

10. The most underrated muppet of all time is Dr. Teeth.  Never heard of him?  Exactly!  I am not sure if he is suppose to be a pimp, a dentist or a musician.  My best guess is that he is a combination of all 3.  I'm guessing that by now, Dr. Teeth has an entire "grill".

9.  I am almost 99% certain that Scooter lives an "alternative lifestyle."  

8. Jim Neighbors has to be the snappiest dresser of the entire 70's decade, not to mention the best guest host of all time. 

7. The reason that Beaker always has a frown on his face, now this is just a total shot in the dark here, is that he is constantly blowing up in various explosions.  I believe that may also explain his vocal cord problems.  

6. Fozzie Bear has very low self esteem, most likely from telling sucky jokes.  Either that or because of his explosive back acne.  Again, probably a combination of both.

5.  What language is that chef speaking anyway? He says the same thing over and over: Borgie Borg Borg.  Apparently, he is from Sweden.    I only  know about the language from watching the muppets, but I must say Swedish is the most backward language I have ever heard.  

4. Kermit prefers a 5-string resonator banjo as opposed to a ukulele or mandolin for it's clarity of voice and sound.  Kermit, you sly, sly devil you.

3.  Frogs and pigs do not mate in the natural world, but in the world of puppetry, they can't keep their flippers/hooves off each other.  By the way, I know that frogs and pigs don't mate in the wild for a fact.  I once put a frog on top of a pig.  I even sprayed the pig with perfume.  The frog showed a little interest at first, but quickly hopped off.  It was a worthwhile experiment though.  I know for a fact that Kermit and Miss Piggy were in regular "contact"(getting busy) because of all those kids they had on that 80's cartoon, The Muppet Babies.

2.  ADHD is prevalent in whatever species Animal is in.  After researching this a little bit, I found that Jim Henson never actually addressed if he was actually medicating Animal for this disorder.  However, my gut instinct is that he was not medicated given the animalistic nature in which he played the drums, and his tendency to bite people.  Also, he was a puppet.

1.  Rowlf the dog is a piano playing genius!

A cat eating spaghetti -

One of my favorite "Soup" clips of all time, this is now a running gag on the show, and for good reason!

Monday, September 8, 2008

If I could leave sticky notes around any LDS chapel -

 I got to thinking about how I would label any ward house in the world with my sticky notes.  Here are a few examples with what I came up with:

Sunday, September 7, 2008

At the football game with my best buddy, Lincoln

Lincoln and I went for a - Boys Night Out - last night.  We went to the Utah/UNLV game and Mike (My brother in law.) and Ryan (Lincoln's cousin.) filled in as last second replacements for to fill our two neighboring seats.

We had a great time and the Utes proved triumphant in the end.  

I forgot what it was like to take a six year old to a football game.  Lincoln's first and primary interest was bird watching.  He wanted to know where Swoop, the mascot was at all times.  He was concerned for his safety when he was not clearly visible.

Lincoln and his cousin were also captivated by the wave.  He watched with intense focus and as it would come close to us he would say, "Get ready dad. Get ready!"  He was devastated when the wave stopped.

He and his cousin were also intent to get themselves on the Jumbotron.  They would wave their arms and dance on their seats at every opportunity.  In spite of their outreaching efforts, they were not Jumbotronned. 

Lincoln also intently ate his snowcone that he had generously deeply loaded with ever flavor available.  After 15 minutes of slurping almost pure sugar, he sat in his seat uncomfortably.  I asked him if he was okay and he said, "That snowcone was really heavy."  I am not sure what he meant by that, but he said that he thought he would really appreciate a drink of water.  Noting how uncomfortable he looked, slumped over on the bench, I went to buy him some water.

After 15 minutes in line and missing out on quite a bit of action, I returned with a $3.00 Aquifina water bottle.  Lincoln drank the entire thing within 10 minutes.  Fortunately, it diluted most of the sugar sitting in his belly.  Unfortunately, I knew I would be making a bathroom trip in the next hour or two.

Of course, the Utes won and all was well with the world.  We left about a minute early and on our walk home the fireworks were literally directly over our heads.  They were so close I think the boys were actually a bit frightened.

On our drive home, Lincoln told me that he had "so much fun" and then asked me "Did the Utes win Dad?"  I told him yes and that I had fun with him too.  Boys night out!

(By the way, I am beginning to have second thoughts about the "God is not a BYU fan" thing.  After the recent rash of completely um, "lucky" victories, I can't help but reconsider.)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Dear Bronco - God does NOT care about your football team.

Apparently, according to this article in the Deseret News, Bronco says his stripling warriors job is to win football games and to "bring people to Christ".  Oh brother!  

If that is the case, they are absolutely failing miserably at it.  In every corner of the country, when people hear "BYU football" they are filled with angst and hatred for their incredible, shameless arrogance.  If anyone, besides a LDS BYU fan, feels as though they are closer to Christ because of BYU's football program, they are full of crap.

If were are not able to tell already, I love how my Blog O' Cheese allows me to vent about the brain dead, nonsense that comes out of Provo sometimes.  Memo to Bronco:  God does not care about BYU football or any football for that matter.  By stating that he does, you are making the non-BYU fans even angrier at you.  As an active LDS member, I am offended by your assertion.  Further, I hope you lose every game by 50 points - and if that makes me Satan's spawn, so be it.  Go Washington!  [Oh, and Go Utes too.]

Friday, September 5, 2008

Tales of the First Grade whispering whisperer. Shhhh!

Somewhere within my messload of overtalkative, overactive, overhyper (overhyper??) group of First Graders there is a whispering whisperer just begging for my attention.  He is very well behaved and such a sweet kid.   I think he believes that if he asks me questions in a normal voice he will get in trouble and bring shame upon his family.  He will often approach me to have a whispering conversation for a couple of seconds while the other kids are working.  We had such a conversation today.

Randy: [whispering] Mr. Yospe, do you want to come over to my house?

Me:  Thanks Randy.  That sounds really fun, but I can't.

Randy: [looking confused] We have a lot of fun things to do at my house.

Me:  That sounds great Randy, but I really need to stay and play with Lincoln at my house.

Randy:  You could bring Lincoln over to play at my house too. 

Me:  Yes, Randy, I suppose I could.  How about I just bring Lincoln one day to play with you here at school?

Randy: [whisper sighing] Can't you come to my house?

Me:  No, I am sorry Randy.

Randy: Oh, okay.  [Turns to return to his seat.]  He turns back and says, "Mr. Yospe?"

Me: Yes Randy?

Randy: You know my real name is Randall, right?

Me: Yes, I knew that.

Randy: Okay, just checking.

Me:  It's been nice whispering with you Randall.

Randy: [huge smile]  Yeah.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Now that I have run my marathon I need a new, challenging goal. Maybe becoming an underwater scuba clown?

After satisfying my soulful desire to complete a major goal by running myself silly until I bloodied my foot (Yes, I forgot to mention the top of one of my shoes completely bludgeoned my foot.), I am ready to take on a new challenge in life.  I hope to make a new, reachable goal that does not involve physical pain or embarrassing topless moments at the sniagrab sale.  After much deliberation, I have come up with the following four choices:

1.  Be on a reality TV show.  I'd be a perfect housemate on Big Brother or a great castaway on Survivor.  Other possibilities include becoming the first 32 year old married man on the Real World or hosting "SuperMANNY".  Moms would be begging me to come into their home, tell the kids to shut up and sprinkle glittery love nuggets around like they are bacon bits, and then cleaning up the nuggets with a high powered vacuum that they only give mannies because they are too powerful for the female nannies.

I think that becoming a reality show wannabe would be a realistic goal with a lot of upside.  

2.  Learn to play an instrument.  I took piano lessons as a youth.  I was a dismal failure.  I never learned how to read music and after two years I finally quit.  

I am thinking about taking up either the harp or one of those long horns that they play in Switzerland.  Of course, for convenience sake, I would purchase the travel size version of the horn.  Or maybe I would get one that would fold into itself, like a giant pirate telescope.  I wonder if they even make those.  I wonder where I could even take long horn lessons.  

I know if I learned the harp I would get tons of people asking me to play at their weddings.  That would be great, but they would have to accept the fact that I am going to sing while I play. Also that I won't be a conventional harpist in the traditional mold.  I might throw in a fast song or two, just to mix things up.  People that know me will understand, but those that don't might be a little put off. Of course, they shouldn't care that I might sit on a 3 foot, plastic lightening bolt, while I play.  Oh, and I might often play shirtless.  

3.  Learn magic tricks.  We're not talking David Blain here, or even those Vegas white tiger trash.  I would just like to learn 5 or 6 simple tricks that I could use in situations where magic would be useful.  You wouldn't believe the amount of times there has been a lull in a conversation I was having where I thought, "Gosh, I WISH I had a magic trick I could break out right now!"  Maybe just a few card tricks or bending silverware with my mind.  Nothing major.  If I do get good enough, I might add a tiger or two, but I would probably start with puppetry tigers.  I have learned that a good lesson in life is that if you are scared of trying something, it is always best to try it out with puppets first.  

I think that is why Jim Henson was so successful in life.

4. Learn a foreign language.   The obvious one seems to be Spanish, but I want to learn one that will make my Portuguese/Italian speaking brothers jealous.  Maybe something from Africa where I have to click my tongue a lot.  I am thinking Kenyan.  Is that a language?  I want to learn it if it is, then go to Kenya and blow their minds!  Maybe I will go meet that kid I have been sending a dollar a day to for the past 5 years.  When I learn that he has died of malnutrition or malaria, they will ask ME to talk at his funeral.  After all, I know Kenyan and I gave all that money to him.  Who else are they going to get?  Just a thought.

5.  Build an orphanage for abandoned orphans that have been abandoned by other orphanages.  This might be my most ambitious idea, but definitely my most worthwhile.  Who steps up and takes in these orphans that our current orphanages don't want?  That's right, no one.  I could gather funds to build an orphanage for these kids, complete with a cruel, fat, sloppy lady to run it and girls with patchy dresses singing "It's a hard knock life."  The orphanage would also have sky lights for the kids to look out of longingly and very stretchy attics with a long row of beds.   Clearly, most of what I know about running orphanages I have seen from movies. But I will tell you this:  I am going to make being an orphan cool again!  Once she sees my orphanage, Punky Brewster is going to wish she never went to live with that old man! Webster will be wishing he could trade his George and Mam Popodopolus and his secret clock elevator for my killer orphanage.  

I always felt bad for Webster.  What would it be like to be an orphan AND a midget?  That is quite a double whammy to start your life.  I don't feel too bad though, he was adopted by a former NFL star and had a elevator in his grandfather clock!  I always thought that the moral of that show was that life isn't so bad as an African American, midget orphan IF you get adopted by a rich football player with a tiny elevator in his clock.  Plus, you get to call your mom "Mam".