Monday, September 27, 2010

Who I want to be when I grow up

I may or may not have the smartest brother around.

He's quoted in the Times, LA Times, Business Week, MSN, and a bunch of other cool magazines. (As a writer I feel like he is living my dream. If I wasn't so happy for him I might be jealous.)

Congrats Nick!!

Find his quotes here

PS-Not only is he the number one researcher in a study concerning MRIs he is also humble, charitable, nice, and pretty funny. So I suppose the point is--I am proud to call Dr. Orme my brother, not only because he is experiencing his five minuets of fame, but also because I know him as a great friend, brother, and doctor.

PPS-As if the world didn't have enough lawyers I am proud to say that the state of Utah just accepted its newest (and probably best) member. Congrats to my brother Matt for passing the bar exam. I envy his life of searching for a new house, and his gorgeous wife and baby. His dream is one that I won't see for a solid ten years (that's a decade)! Maybe this just means I will have to expect more free dinners from him.

PPPS-As an after thought, my mentor thought my thesis idea was excellent and now I get to start creating a proposal. Woot Woot--watch for me in NY Times someday (the only cooler newspaper that I can think of that Nick isn't mentioned in....)

Friday, September 17, 2010

The Poof

I was warned about two things in Logan.

Tied-dye shirts and the poof. I have had numerous experiences with both, but this post is dedicated to the poof.

If you don’t know what the poof is you must come visit. Northern Utahans (I just had to look up if that is really what natives of Utah are called, and we are indeed Utahans) love to sport the high volume poof in their hair. The style is simple. You take straight, beautiful hair and ruin it my ratting the under layers, destroying them (and possibly the atmosphere) with hair spray in a can, and then smoothing the top. Thus adding 4 inches of height.

I was talking to my roommates about the poof and Annie said “everybody poofs.” As if that statement alone isn’t funny enough, I couldn’t stop thinking about the book “Everybody Poops,” a childhood classic. I digress.

Anyway, I look around and it’s true. Virtually 80% of the girls up here are sporting the poof proudly. It seems unspoken that there is a competition and the one with the most poof has the most power. Poof=power. An odd equation, but one which the Loganites (I didn’t look up that name. I am choosing to believe they are called Loganites because it sounds fantastic) hold to. Sometimes I sit in class and look around at the poofs, because it’s hard to see the professor due to said poof, and I just think about how much work the poof is. The irony of it all is I spend all morning attempting to rid myself of my natural poof, a product of very curly hair, and am always a little disappointed with the inevitable remaining poof. In my world poof= girls with a inferiority complex whose fake nails are always too short for them and their Aeropostal shirts have been dried one time too many. But alas, there is the small voice inside of me that, for .5 sec thinks, I’m so glad I have natural (or any sort) of volumne in my hair.

I often wonder if the poof is natural though--or if they have invested in the ever classic tv infomercial of the bumpit. This invention, which comes in three sizes, allows for the unnatural look of the poof (sometimes referred to as the bump-hense bumpit) to be done in mere minuets. Thank you inventor--for further delaying the progress of women in Logan.

If you're wondering how a bumpit works I've added instructions.

The point of this post? To pledge to never intentionally poof and to keep a healthy perspective of how ridiculous the poof is. This could be a challenge because I am surrounded by it daily. Will you make the pledge?

Monday, September 13, 2010

English 1010-The First Assignment

I thought I that I might let you all in on what I currently spend all of my time doing. Teaching. As most of you know I teach two freshman English courses. I had to teach this assignment that allows them to choose their own songs and write an essay about why the songs are important to them. I didn't love the topic of this assignment, but it seems like the students enjoyed it. Anyway-I thought I might post my example here so you can see what the students are, ideally, supposed to create.

My Ramblings in the United Kingdom

Sitting on the stain colored carpet in Bath, England the tears began to swell. I had just spoken with my brother about his second child, Marie, and had heard the phrase that we all knew was coming. She had passed away and her funeral would be the following week. That night, as I feel asleep, the song “When You Come Back Down” by Nickel Creek flowed through the white cord of my iPod into my mournful heart.

The lyrics told what I was unable to begin to think about “you got to leave me now, you got to go alone.” Marie, a child who hardly was able to experience the world, was leaving alone. And though I knew she was in pain, the thought of her death seemed incomprehensible. Leaving the arms of my brother was her only option, and the calming cadence of the song with the lyrics which said “I’ll be the other hand that always holds the line, Connectin’ in between your sweet heart and mine” helped me realize that our relationship still existed. She would not be forgotten. And now, having returned from living abroad, and with the passing years of Marie’s death, I still find myself listening to Nickel Creek and remembering Marie. The song “When You Come Back Down” has transformed from a song once easily neglected and forgotten, to a contemplative experience with focused thoughts on Marie.

Lyrics of songs have a way of helping to remove me from my life, and transport me to an experience and make it immortal. This has happened on numerous occasions when I listen to the Braveheart sound track. In a whirlwind of memories I find myself removed to a hike in Scotland.

After a long bus ride, where 40 of us were herded into a shaky double Decker bus, we were glad to be dropped at the base of a tall crag outside of Edinburgh. With this as my first experience in Scotland, I gazed at the rock face on the north side with respect and admiration.

This crag, detailed with golden bushes and thriving thistles, stood majestically as we began our ascent. Slowly, but determinedly, we rose with the swells of the wind toward the peak. As we approached the top, overlooking a scene previously only experienced in books, I was converted to the beauty of the highlands. Silently my gaze turned to the walled city and with the far distant hum of bagpipes, I fell in love with Scotland. The aged castle, with ivy and brush trying to take back the mark of man, stood in the distance. The guards were being changed. Scotsman dressed with their regalia, stood with pride while spectators watched. While absorbing the view, once claimed exclusively by my ancestors, my friend took me to the top where she and I listened to William Wallace’s “Freedom Speech” given to the Scottish Army as depicted in the movie Braveheart. Following the speech, we listened to the song titled “Freedom.”

This instrumental piece is intended to reflect the history of Scotland’s independence, with the crescendo’s matching the speeches arguing for freedom, and the almost forgotten bagpipes in the background representing the influence of Scotland. The song effectively creates a movement of passion and love for the Scotsman’s drive for their own freedom. The piece creates a surge of emotion and love for the land of the thistle.

When I reflect on my time in the United Kingdom I have a littering of memories. Some of these memories are vague and fleeting, but those that are associated with songs are captivating and create a picture that is as clear as yesterday’s memories. Nickel Creek helps me to remember the experience of Marie’s death, and experiencing the soundtrack of Braveheart in Scotland have allowed for more powerful memories which remain far longer than experiences not associated with music. The songs have transportive qualities, which allows for me to relive the experience, and over time I find myself appreciating the experiences more because of the interplay between the two.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Why the movie The Holiday has ruined my life

As many of you know, I have a true love for the movie The Holiday. But, unfortunately, upon further reflection I have realized that it has ruined my ability to have a normal relationship/day.

Part of my love for The Holiday is due to the many attractive individuals. Thank you Jude Law for breathing. How in the world is one supposed to exist in the world of Logan city with expectations of individuals like Jude Law. As of right now I have yet to met any Judes and instead many a non-Jude. (Karli agrees but wants to mention that it's also hard without David Archuleto around....Just to clarify the two are in completely different leagues.)

Additionally, the movie has mixed romance with my love for Christmas. It was a very shrewd trick of the directors of this movie to mix ones love for the holiday scents and smells with relationship love. So, not only does this movie make you miss having a boy but combined with Christmas you miss the feelings of the best season of the year.

It ruins my day because whenever I see movies staged in the UK I go into my regular post-london coma of sadness. And then, on the flip side, they show California and it makes me want the sun. real bad.

In other news-

My rommies and I just broke into singing Journey's "Don't Stop Believing" and no one said a word. Love it.

I'm lovin' the pic of Jude above.

I had a great Labor day weekend with many Provo parties and a lot of football talk.

I'm still surviving grad school.