Sunday, February 27, 2011

Bystander Effect

We met a brief 10 minutes ago when I pulled up to his apartment in SLC. Yes-it’s another first date, and it’s a blind date, and I had considered backing out of the date more than 10 times. All I knew was that his name is Tim.

We met, started chatting and acting like old friends with banter and sarcasm. We quickly pulled up to the popular restaurant the Red Iguana. His friends that we were meeting were coming, and so he put our names on the list and we began to field the all too familiar first date questions while we waited on the bench outside the store.

“Yeah, I’m getting my masters—no no it’s not that big of a deal”

“Fourth child, only girl…yeah, I’m a little spoiled”

“Well honestly, my favorite food is potatoes…shot I should have said something more sexy”

And then a large black man who was yelling for someone to call the police swaggered down the sidewalk. As he past the large crowds no one said anything and let him continue to walk. I looked at Tim as the intoxicated man came closer.

The Chicago born man turned his head to reveal a deflated eye, weeping tears of viscous blood. His torn eyelid hung, threatening to detach. Tim and I both momentarily paused, confused--believing it was unbelievable.

And I didn’t know what to do. And I paused, and as I think about that pause I feel sick that I am the person that did what the others did. I watched while someone who needed helped, yelled with profanity, pleading for assistance, and just paused. They call it the bystander effect. I call it an excuse used by those who, for whatever reason, don’t help.

And then Tim was on the line with the police, while I sat with the man asking for details about the children he kept talking about. Hoping to glean information that would be useful to the police, while middle aged men asked their wives to stand on the other side of them while quickly fleeing to their cars.

And Tim remained on the phone. And I stayed on the floor with the man.

And the police and ambulance came and took him away.

And Tim looked at me and said, “This is a great way to start out a first date.”

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Week In Review

Here are just a few main points of what was a very busy week.

February 14th (Valentines Day)-Roses from a friend, and the bachelor.

February 17th-I involuntarily turned 23. Keep your fingers crossed that this is a big year.

February 18th-I reconnected with family at a memorial service for my Grandma in Idaho.

February 19th-Attended my Grandma's funeral, which was filled with wonderful memories of her life. My brother was also able to fly out for the funeral, so I drove him back to the airport after the funeral and was able to talk to him for 3 hours, as he was forced to be in the car with me.

February 20th-Partied with my nieces and nephew and family.

February 21st-Birthday lunch with some of the greatest girls I know and then helped my best friend look at wedding dresses.....let's just say that people that have Kel's body are stunning in wedding dresses.

And then I drove to Logan and thought about how returning to L-town meant figuring out a lesson for the next day, getting a new windshield, and walking in the snow/cold. Hurrah for the coming of spring.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Stone Soup

I am in a class that studies farm literature and today we made stone soup. It made me think of my childhood book, which is about how everyone brings something to put in a pot and you make soup. And so, as a class, we did precisely that. We all brought stuff, threw it in a pot (crockpot) and ate it.

And it was delicious.

Top three coolest facts learned in farm lit:

1. Women were more marginalized after farms became larger and more commercial because a successful farm was illustrated if there was a wife who didn't have to do anything-contributing to her loss of status in society and her rights.

2. More people are starving now than ever before, even after the green revolution, because food is now a commodity and substance farming is virtually nonexistent.

3. The carbon footprint on food is incredible (especially in America). The average distance that food travels to make it to our table is over 1,000 miles.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Skiing, Falling and Gambling.

On Saturday I decided to do what the locals in Cache Valley do-which is to run the slopes at Beaver Mountain. This mom and pop shop was small, but quaint. Spencer and I pulled into a parking spot ten feet from the lift (which is unheard of because we came at like 12:30...showing that no one goes to this 'resort'). We started riding and as to be predicted, Spencer owned the jumps and I was more a mogul gal. We both had our strengths. Well it had been awhile since the mountain had gotten any snow so we were running the trees in search for powder. I basically followed the boy who know the mountain "like his own home."

Bad idea.

We ended up going on this run where there was this jump that I thought I could handle. I went off the jump, fell on the ground, rolled around, lost both of my skis and looked for my friend to help me. He was gone. I was cold.

Come to find out he and his friend actually crafted that jump the week prior. Curse them.

My back and neck have never hurt so much.
All in all though the trip was great because it was sunny and warm and it reminded me that cold weather can end.

But, the day was not over.

I had a date to the Aggie basketball game, which we won (it was a sad day for Cleveland and Fresno State) and my date and I got the customary Aggie ice cream. They love it like BYU students love cougar tails. I really impressed my date by knowing what a RPI ranking was for basketball. I really need to start thanking my brothers for indoctrinating me into a culture of sports....

Anyway, the school was having this big Mardi Gras party after, and the 6-5' boy I went with is pretty involved in the school so we went. A large part of the party was the casino. They gave you 1000 chips and you got to gamble and the person who won the most won free tuition for next semester. Unbelievable. Anyway, we had a fun time playing poker and watching the cute 18 year olds try to look like hookers (a dream come true for their parents). The date was fun but I ran into so many of my students that I felt like some social norms were really being breached. Speaking of breaching social norms, one of my students was at my apartment last week. I wanted to die. Anyway, I also feed some of my students gambling habits by giving them some extra tickets. Maybe I'll be the cool teacher.
After the night of school sponsored gambling (something I'm totally used to at BYU), we went to a school sponsored show produced by Satan himself. We went to a mentalist who is someone who literally can read peoples minds and do crazy things. I guess if you're going to sell your soul to Lucy you might as well do something cool like mind reading.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Year of the Rabbit

(Rabbit PDA is socially acceptable)
Welcome to the year of the rabbit! In order to celebrate this exciting news I would like to tell you a little bit about the pet I had as a child.

I love animals and I really wanted a bunny, so in Orme family fashion, I had to write an essay about why I deserved a rabbit and how I would be responsible for him. Honestly dad, who makes their 2nd grader do that? Anyway, the following month Oreo entered my life (let's play a game and see if you can figure out what colors he was). So Oreo becomes a part of the family and he is great, and though he was frequently tormented by my brothers who called him Numan (off of Seinfeld) I loved him.

That is until he bit me.

So Matt and I were playing in the backyard and he kept threatening to hit Oreo with a football. As a good caretaker, I put a blanket over him in order to protect him. Ok, so in Oreo's defense he was probably scared out of his mind in the dark and the hugs of "love" that I kept giving him were probably more painful than helpful. There I am, the guardian of the cookie, and Matt actually throws the football and I give another love squeeze and Oreo bit me.

It hurt.
I had to get a shot.
Our relationship was never the same.

Years later Oreo would find himself "relocated" to another family looking for a rabbit.

The more I relive the story the more pity I have for Oreo. I mean this rabbit lived in the dungeon, also known as our unfinished basement, during the bleak winter months and I would often neglect him. Also, he never got to hang out with other rabbit friends, and I am pretty sure he was tormented by a dog or two throughout his life.

And so to bring in the year of the rabbit I dedicate 2011 to Oreo and I hope that rabbits are treated better this year. Cheers to my first, and possibly, last rabbit.
(Does this not look like Fiver or Bigwig?)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Take My Breath Away

I know this topic is seemingly banal but I promise if you were here you would understand.

This morning I woke up to weather that was -4 degrees and was about to walk to school when my friend texted me saying that his weather app claimed the weather to be deathly cold. Not wanting to lose a friend, he decided to save my life and come and pick me up. Little did I know the temperature with the wind chill was -18. When I got out of his car to walk up to school it was as though the cold air was entering my alveolar sacs, crystalizing and then bursting them in a frozen explosion. I thought I was going to die. Just up the street the temperature was -45. Yes, you read that correctly. -45.

Up until this point I always have figured that people who complain about the weather in Logan were just a bunch of wusses... I take back all of my previous thoughts about them. They're really soothsayers.

I feel like I more fully understand Robert Frost's poem Fire and Ice and if I am able to determine the way the Earth ends I am going to voraciously campaign against death by freezing.

Fire and Ice


Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.