Tuesday, August 30, 2011

picnicking is the new black

What on earth is better than summer?  Um... let me answer that for you.  Nothing.  I might even go as far as to say that I would give up Christmas to have summer all year long; especially living in Utah where for some reason it snows until June.  Not only is summer the best season, but it is also the best part about school because there is none!  Unfortunately, yesterday was the start of the new semester which means that summer is coming to a close, and seeing as how UT doesn't really have a decent Fall, the cold is coming.  So say goodbye to seersucker and linen, adios to leisurely bike rides in late afternoon, and auf wiedersehen to sun-kissed skin (so hot, will melt your Popsicle).

You know that feeling you get right before finals... realizing that the easy life is gone done past and the worst is still to come... that now is crunch time?  That's how I feel right now.  Anything summery must be done within the next month, but in reality, it's pretty much over since school has now begun.  Well with that realization in hand, some friends and I decided that picnicking was really the only way to spend the last few afternoons of summer vacation.  I honestly think that Picnicking is one of the most underrated social activities ever.  Really though... just sitting back soaking up the sun at a park with a basket of food and great friends... what could top it!?  This realization came last summer when I invested in a picnic basket ($4 at DI thank you very much!).  Here in Provo, there's always a search for new and/or exciting things to do (as a San Diego native moving to a land-locked state, the realization that the traditional fallback of the beach being nowhere in sight is rather grim).  We try to be on top of things and trying the latest and greatest, but I guess sometimes you have to go vintage if you're going to find what the hot new thing is, and that's exactly what happened with picnicking.  Well, I realized that my picnic basket hadn't been put to much use this season, what with all the shenanigans I've been up to, so I took it out of retirement.  I can now say that the little basket's life is once again with purpose and it shan't be left alone again!

Picnic number 1 of the weekend was really spur of the moment... Wallis ended up getting her morning shift covered and Tara and I didn't have to be anywhere til 2, so we figured let's have a nice lunch at Kiwanis Park.  Wallis busted out the blanket (TN Orange and White! Go Vols!) and we grabbed the makings for PB&J (yup, we went elementary school for this one) and some salt and vinegar chips and we couldn't have been happier!

After a swell time picnicking with Wallis and Tara, I couldn't resist doing it again.  Most people would probably wait at least a couple days, but nay! I scheduled another one for the next afternoon.  So for picnic number 2,  I recruited some other friends, Rachel, Sian-Amy, and Morgan.  Kylie was going to come, but she was lame and backed out last minute, thus missing the main highlight of our Saturday.  Well, it may actually be neck and neck with us sneaking into the freshman dance (yup... BYU rebellion at its finest) and getting eyed by all the barely legal (that is if they actually were) freshmen.  But I digress; this time around, we went all out with the more traditional picnic of fried chicken, mashed potatoes, coleslaw, and lemon cake... ok, so we cheated... it was KFC (but it was a really good deal!  Either way, we were satisfied in our tummies.

needless to say, it was a great weekend of good food, good atmosphere, and good friends.
Thanks guys for making summer great!

Looking forward to a good semester (and what sunshine is left!)

Friday, August 26, 2011

Snog, Date, Dump

Well now that I'm back to work and have 3 1/2 hrs a day to sit at a computer and not be on facebook or youtube, I have plenty of time in the world to blog away!

Speaking of having all the time in the world, I propose a rhetorical question: 
How do you fill your free time when it's late at night and there's nothing to do?

I have these friends and they are wonderful and beautiful and simply charming to be around

Amy Sian-Amy Rachel Kylie

The four of these girls are roommates and reign from the exotic worlds of San Jose, London, London, and Kylie is from Lindon (but that's ok).  Well last night I made my way over to their not-so-humble abode (it's a fantastic apartment that I have been known to covet) and played some good 'ol catch-up after a whirlwind of a summer.  Now mind you, it was late at night and after  a bag of English sweets (not candy... their sweets) provided oh so generously by Rachel and postponing a classic Heath Ledger movie (much to the dismay of Kylie) we began a favorite time-passer: Snog, Date, Dump (it's so good that we even got Amy's boyfriend, Matt, of whom I approve greatly, to join in.

Snog, Date, Dump is a game that I'm assuming is probably a favorite among pre-teen girl slumber parties, yet is more enticing than I would care to admit *if there were a smiley icon for biting your lip/loosening your collar, it would be inserted here.  Basically, the premise of the game is that the participant is presented with three options -usually celebrities- and must decide which one he or she would snog (that's make-out in British for all you uncultured people), date, and dump.  The game works best when you know the person extremely well and they have to make the life-altering decision of whom they must dump... if you make it too easy then the fulfillment of watching your friend struggle internally is void, thus the whole thing is in vain.

Well, it was really too easy to make these girls sweat and panic over whom they would release from their grasp (like it was ever really in reach to begin with), but they really struggled to make me cry out in agony over this fate-making choice.  but finally... fiiiiiiiiinaly!!! they got me to wave my fist in the air screaming, "WHYYYY!?!?!?"

Emma Watson          Amanda Seyfried          Dianna Agron

Oh! the agony over the process of choosing between them!  Ok, so I'm not thaaat obsessed that agony is the true sentiment, but it was still a difficult decision.  The verdict you ask (like you're really that interested)? 
Snog: Amanda  Date: Emma  Dump: Dianna
Dianna, forgive me, but what's done is done. In my defense, though!... Kylie, oh Kylie... the same Kylie who has dedicated several posts on her blog http://kylieiswriting.blogspot.com/ to Ryan Gossling, decided to dump him when faced with Matt Damon and Ryan Reynolds.

So in response to the previous question, "How do you spend your free time?"  I suppose I might say that I fill my free time judging people I've never met by discussing with friends the imaginary relationships that we'll never have.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Devolution of the Beard

Yup, it's about time... I know... It's been a pretty busy summer and been over 2 months since my last post... so much for the goal of being a successful blogger.  After a murderous Spring term and a fun-filled summer as an EFY counselor, I went home for about a week and a half.  Now at BYU there are fairly strict (and often times ridiculous) rules imposed upon the students.  One of such rules that affects the men of BYU (well, lets hope it's just the men) is that we are required to be clean-shaven at all times.  While there are exceptions like the mustache and the lucky man with sensitive skin who gets a beard card, it is something that the Y-chromosomes in the 2-mile radius must endure.  Well, this rule in particular is also applied to EFY counselors, so when all was done with that chapter in my life, I decided to liberate by poor neck and go a while (ok, so like a week and a half) without shaving.  The result was as follows:

However, one of my coworkers texted me saying that she had to make an emergency trip to Colorado, so there were some extra shifts available.  Because I took such a long time off to visit home, I figured I could use some extra money (that, and I realized I had NO groceries to my name, so I need to pay for food).  Unfortunately, every decision comes with a consequence and this decision resulted in the necessity for me to shave.  I work  on campus, so all campus rules apply at work as well.  As I went to the sink, I looked in the mirror and thought to myself, "Self, if we're gonna do this, lets make it fun."  [by the way, for all you grammarians out there, no, I don't know if thoughts belong in quotation marks and quite honestly, I don't particularly care]  I figured that this would probably be the last time in who knows how long that I would have this much facial hair, so why not see how I look with a variety of styles!  I decided to take it in steps.

Step 1:  Shave the neck


I have to admit, it was really nice to not have a really itchy neck, but I don't know how much it really changed the appearance of the beard, so I moved on to a new style.

Step 2:  Shave the cheeks to make chinstraps

An interesting look, but I can't say it was my favorite, though it did remind me that in recent months, I think I may have developed slight dimples (no, they weren't ever there before).  Anyway, I kind of felt like a high school teacher... probably not the feeling that you would expect, but I swear the majority of the high school teachers at my school had chinstraps

Step 3: Goatee Creation

Honestly, the goatee just made me feel old.
Step 4: I got a Sexy 'Stache 

By this point, I have to say that the only thing that came to mind was the ever-classic line from The Princess Bride, "Aaaaaassss yooooouuuuu wiiiiiiiiiiiissshhhhh!"
The thing with the 'stache is that it IS BYU approved, so technically, I could keep it and not be in the wrong.  However, there are so many terrible stigmas about those with mustaches that I was nervous about keeping it.  
If you will, I wish to take a moment to share with all those who have never been exposed to the wonders of Divine Comedy, a comedy club here at the BY of U.

Now I personally don't think it looked too bad, but I also don't want to be referred to as having a Chester the molester mustache.  Ergo, I went all the way to Step 5.

Step 5: Get rid of it all!

Yup, so now it's gone and I am back to a bit of a baby face, but that's ok.  And now that you're absolutely sick of seeing pictures of me, I would totally love your input as to which style you enjoy best!  Very narcissistic, I know, but please comment below, and no, I won't be offended by any opinion expressed.  I basically want to know if I should dry shave for a week and tear up my neck for a week once winter hits to try and get a beard card :)

Oh! and I almost forgot... the aftermath in the sink... grody, I know.