Friday, April 25, 2008

Putting An Issue To Rest...

First and foremost, I apologize to all of the people who are anxiously awaiting the next blog post about distractions that waste my life away. All two or three of you are probably upset. But, due to a recent verbal altercation amongst a few of my friends, I need to clarify a serious, serious issue that has been heavily debated since the existence of time. Or toilets.

While I genuinely hope that I do not alienate myself from any women (specifically, potential significant others), it is my firm belief that men SHOULD NOT be required by any law, implicit or explicit, to both raise AND lower the toilet seat in order to use it.

My reasons for this are many, so I’ll start by listing some of the arguments I’ve heard from women around the world as to why men should have to lift the seat and then proceed to lower it as well (ok, basically just why they should have to lower it – I think the reasons for why it should be raised are probably obvious).

(Fights like this could only come from one issue: toilet seat responsibility)

One reason I’ve heard from numerous women is that if men don’t lower the seat back down, “they sometimes fall in.” I would just like to state that, for the record, if you do not look down at what you are sitting on before you sit, you are foolish. I apologize to women who have fallen in before, but you would never just sit down on a random chair without looking to see if there were thumbtacks or a piece of cake resting on the seat. Why would you not look down at a seat (at least for one second) to make sure you won’t fall into a puddle of water?

From the guy’s perspective, here’s why this argument frustrates me. If women shouldn’t be required to look down at the seat before sitting down, why should men be required to look down at the seat before…I guess we’ll call it… going number one? I don’t walk in and begin to use the toilet without first checking to see whether the seat is up. If I did that, women would be extremely displeased with me. So I check, lift, and go. Why shouldn’t women have to walk in and check if the seat is down before using the toilet? As a woman, common sense should tell you that it would be in your best interest to at least check the seat for one second before sitting down. So if you fall into a toilet because the seat is up, blame ignorance, not men.

Secondly, I hear women say that they don’t want to touch the seat because it’s “gross.” What in the world would incline one to believe that guys don’t think a toilet seat is gross? Do you think I have any desire in my heart to touch a toilet seat not just once, but twice in one use? Absolutely not. I hate germs. Just because it is gross for a woman does not make it any cleaner for a man.

Thirdly, I have heard women say “that’s just the way it’s always been.” I won’t get into this too deeply, because this blog is young and the opportunity to offend the masses (again, all two or three of you) is ever-present, but if you applied this theory to any of the other major movements in United States history, you would be called ignorant. Racism – that’s just the way it’s always been. Women’s rights (or lack thereof) – that’s just the way it’s always been. Dumping toxic waste into rivers – that’s just the way it’s always been. Guys doing both sides of toilet seat maintenance – that’s just the way it’s always been. I repeat, ignorance.

I don’t understand how a solution can be so painfully obvious, and have the issue still be so highly debated. It’s mind-boggling (and this mind of mine is rarely boggled) that we haven’t come to the simple agreement that would solve everything: split the difference!

Guys: it is obviously our job to lift the seat before using it – it’s cleanly and it just makes for a better relationship with our female friends and family. Ladies: it is your job to use common sense, check before you sit down, and if the seat isn't down, put it down yourself. That’s all I’m asking you to do. Just think before you sit. You wouldn’t walk into the road without looking both ways (WARNING: THIS IS THE GRAPHIC CAR ACCIDENT SCENE FROM MEET JOE BLACK…that’s my disclaimer), you wouldn’t jump into a tank at Sea World before looking to see if there was a shark inside, and you wouldn’t jump out of an airplane without checking to see if you had a parachute on your back. The same could be said of checking the seat.

Besides, if the seat is up, it just means some nice boy or man already took the time to lift IT up rather than leave some disgusting bacteria on your porcelain throne. So just split the difference and go 50/50 with us on this one. It’ll be so much easier for everyone. Any differing opinions? I find it hard to believe there won’t be.

Here comes the hotsteppa…murder-a… I’m the lyrical gangsta…murder-a…

Monday, April 21, 2008

Big Cities = Big Fun

Sorry to interrupt the thrilling countdown I have going on right now, but you can’t go on a trip to a sweet city, meet a president of a Major League Baseball team, ride a really fun roller coaster (not actually me), and enjoy general awesomeness for two days and not write about it.

So our Public Relations Student Society of America group went to Minneapolis last Wednesday and Thursday. And it was much more fun than I thought it would be. We started the day with a short, four and a half hour drive but once we were in the Cities, it was on to fun and games. Literally.

We met with Dave St. Peter, President of the Minnesota Twins, to ask him about communication and public relationy things. And we got to hang out down on the field for batting practice, which was surprisingly cooler than you’d think. I’m not much for celebrity worshipping, but it was cool to be two feet away from Justin Morneau warming up at a major league ballpark (not him in the picture, by the way) ((I think it’s Punto)) (((Slight difference))). Later we enjoyed a game, although we weren’t sitting quite as closely as we were during batting practice. The Twins eventually won, 6-5 if you weren't there or aware of the radio, Sportscenter, or the internet.

Then we went to a bar. But not this one. Go Augustana.

Thursday was great too. We went and met with people at WCCO TV in Minneapolis and talked about why they do what they do where they do when they do. Not who they do. Then we went to Carmichael Lynch Spong and listened to some high-rollers talk to us about public relations. These guys are good. Then, after a lunchless noon hour we made our way out to New Brighton and met with people from Risdall McKinney Public Relations. That place is really, really fun. It’s like a carnival for adults. Candy everywhere, crazy signs and paintings all over, cardboard cutouts galore. And they’re good at what they do too, so it was nice to see a place where you could be successful and still have craploads of fun.

Finally, we met with the Mall of America event coordinators. The Mall of America is this really big mall in Bloomington, MN. While event coordinating isn’t really my thing, riding the new Nickelodeon roller coaster rides at the renovated theme park is my thing. And my friend Kristen rode it too. And we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Sorry to all you Camp Snoopy lovers, but this updated park is better, fo’ real. They even added some new rides too.

Anyway, my two day tryst with Minneapolis rocked. I went with fun people and I learned a bunch about public relations and how to ride roller coasters. That’s such a good combination for a group field trip. Anyway, peace out, and numbers 7 through 5 are on their way into your heads and into your hearts.

I came to get down…I came to get down…so get out ya seat and jump around!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Distractions #10 - #8: Let's get it on!

So begins my list of the Top 10 Things I Waste My Time Doing. The title could probably be shortened, but I like starting words with capital letters, so I’m going to keep it that way. I struggle with different distractions on different days, but sometimes, I come across all ten of the things on my list in one day. And those days aren’t productive. In order to keep you enticed, and to not have a novel-esque blog posting, I’m going to start with the first three and add the rest over the next few days. Let the games begin with number 10 on my list…

10. Eating
This may sound like a deceptively necessary element of life, but the truth is, I spend far too much time eating. Whether I’m in the Augustana Commons socializing with people while we reminisce about old times (and people watch), or whether I’m sitting at home watching college basketball or the Twins while I eat my hot ham water, the point is that I end up spending way too much time that should be spent on much more complex and important tasks than eating food.

9. Comic book reading (and buying)
Some people know this about me, and a lot probably don’t, but I love comic books (mostly Marvel). I’m assuming that, in the near future, I will probably have a long, long blog post about the intricacies of comic books (and why they aren’t just for seven year olds), but for now, let’s just say that I spend too much time and money on comic books on an almost weekly basis. Not only do they collectively take about an hour or two to read, but I spend tons of time reading about them on-line too. It’s a deadly combination. But man do I love it.

8. The last distraction for today: searching for crap I don’t need online
The items that fall into the category of “crap” are wide-ranging, so I figure I’ll address just a few of said items so you get a glimpse of what exactly I’m talking about. The bottom line is I have spent hours upon hours searching for useless things I don’t actually need, such as a glowing piece of the Agro Crag (for the first time in about two years of searching, one is actually there…the bid runs one more day so take a look), a DVD collection of the X-Men animated series (90s style), and Arrested Development t-shirts (ok…maybe I do need some of those…but they still waste my time). While there is a plethora of other junk on my time-wasting agenda, this is about .05% of the stuff on which I waste my time searching. And this is something that I know won’t be stopping anytime in the near future.

(A glowing piece of the Crag... Mike O' Malley would be crushed to see it being sold so frivolously. Although I'm pretty sure it's just a replica anyway, so no penalties from Mo.)

So there are the bottom three of my top ten distractions. If you have a connection to any of those three life obstacles, let me know. I’d be happy to discover there are more of you out there like me (and I'm happy to take any hints on how to not be so distracted by these things). I’d also be happy to find out what distracts you. For all I know, I could come across a new distracter that might poke its way into my top ten. And I would both hate you for it and love you for it.

West side…which you and I know is the best side.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Distracting distractions distract me...

As I’ve begun to make the semi-awkward transition into this whole “blogosphere,” I’ve noticed a variety of topics and stories throughout different blogs. I’ve also noticed that I spend an inordinate amount of time searching through, reading, and commenting on these blogs. Which led me to ponder just how much time I spend on them…or more specifically, how much time I waste reading them when I should be doing other “important” things.

After careful consideration, I realized blogging isn’t the only hindrance to my eventual achievement of life goals. Many other distractions (I actually wasted even more time on this blog by spending half an hour searching for a clip of Gordon Bombay’s moving speech in D2: The Mighty Ducks when he takes the “distraction” of his cardboard cutout and burns it in a fire-in-a-barrel…but to no avail) have taken their toll on my success as a human being, and I figured it would be best to examine them and see if anyone else struggles with these same obstacles.

I’m going to do a series of three sets of three distractions, with the final, number one distraction receiving its own individual blog post. Genius, and unique. Or maybe just genius. Since I’m going out of town for two days, you’ll be in full suspense for about 48 hrs, but get ready to have your socks rocked off when I’m back in SFSD.

Let’s flip the track, bring the old school back.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

An old man at age 21...

This weekend I had the wonderful privilege of seeing my good friend (and better musician...and better athlete...and better person) Joey Ryan perform on Augustana College’s campus. Joey decided to make a trip back to the great city of Sioux Falls to perform some of his new music, which is definitely worth giving a listen. The venue was basically full of people who came to see Joey and it was cool to see that much support for someone who graduated last year. Of course, 85% of the crowd left after Joey's show, leaving the closing band with about 11 people listening. Too bad, so sad.

While it was great having Mr. Ryan back in town for the weekend, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little depressed after we finished hanging out on Friday night. Even though I’ve had plenty of “Remember when…” conversations in my life as a college student, this Friday was the first time one of those conversations has made me realize how much things will be changing in the near future. College has been really enjoyable, and I finally faced the harsh reality that many of my closest friends and I are nearing the end of our run as students.

(Soon, nights like this will be a thing of the past...tragedy)

Sometimes I get a little nervous because I always hear grizzled old men telling me, “enjoy college while you can…it’s the most fun you’ll ever have.” Then, I usually realize that they’re grizzled old men for a reason and they probably lived to drink and chase unattractive women in college (which is what they still end up doing, just in smokier bars with women who still aren't that attractive). I figure if I am completely unable to have some fun after I graduate, then I’m really not all that exciting a person, and I should be sitting next to Joe Biker at the Thirsty Duck, wasting my life away.

As a result, I’ve taken a personal vow to continue having fun throughout my life, no matter how old I get and no matter where my life might take me. I think my best option would just be making a butt load of money, and then I can pay for all the fun (and my friends).

The good news is that quite a few of my friends will be sticking around in Sioux Falls after college. And while we may not be able to pull off the Thursday night $1.00 drink special at the Sunbird Lounge as often as we could in our college days, I do think we’ll be able sneak one in every once in awhile. As long as we don’t all marry idiots. But that’s another discussion for another day.

The point is, college may be over, but I'm not going to let college be the "most fun I'll ever have." I plan on continuing my reign of supremely enjoyable experiences, and I welcome anyone who wants to partake in said experiences conmigo. We've still got 50 or 60 years to have some fun, so we might as well take advantage of them now.

P.S. - If there are any old people reading this and they have tips on fun stuff to do after reaching the ripe old age of… post-collegeness… please let me know. I’d love to hear what you 30-year and 40-year-olds do with yourselves now besides drink coffee and read.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

What I'm all about...

So... welcome to my blog. This will be a learning experience for all of us. Except mostly for me. I'm guessing the majority of you know how to read words and click links.

This blog will cover a lot of issues. Be it the saddening absence of NERF commercials on modern television, TV shows I enjoy, my favorite bands and rappers, or TONS of other stuff worth discussing (politics, sports, other blogs, philosophical ideas, comic books, etc.), I plan on igniting and inviting intelligent discussion on myriad topics. And I'll use words like myriad.

You'll soon discover that I have a lot more to say, but I'll leave you hanging and make you come back later for some more. Hopefully you come across something that interests you. If not, open up your mind and find some new interests here. It'll be worth it. And leave a comment or two while you're at it. Thanks.

Get money, stay true.

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