Bippity Boppity Boo! Wishes Granted.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

There were some very thoughtful, creative entries on this one. Thanks to Cinderella III, Freaky Friday, and Big I am very aware of the cataclysmic perils of allowing people to arbitrarily switch lives with one another. I gave a lot of fair, unbiased thought as to who should win this contest. Here are the winners:

1st Place: Angie
2nd Place (Tied): Shannon, Brandon, Andrea, Natalie, Paul, Whitney, Sandy
3rd Place: Greg

Angie is the hands-down winner of this contest, pushing her consecutive win steak to two! Just kidding. I just wanted to do that to rib my good friend Greg a little. He gave me a hard time about how often my family members win my contests, so I just wanted to have a little fun at his expense. Greg actually won this week's contest. Way to go Greg!

Back when I used to watch the Amazing Race, I had the same thought as Greg about the lucky crew that just travels the world filming groups of unemployed models and actresses. The reference to Zorbing was what won it for Greg. Andrea and I watched that episode and have always wanted to try it since then. So Greg, your wish is granted. Please just make sure that the filming will not pull you away from too many Bishopric meetings.

(Quick note on the Amazing Race. When the closing credits role, the Executive Producer's name is Bertram Van Munster, which sounds like a completely made up name to me. The name sounds so fake that we have an on-going joke in our family that if I ever have to flee from the law, I am going to stay at the O. Henry Hotel under the name "Bertram Van Munster". I can just see fugitives using that name as they are put on the spot by a Sleep Inn Clerk and panic when asked what their name is:

Sleep Inn Clerk: "Good evening, sir, how may I help you."
Fugitive: "Um, I need a room for like a week or two. Maybe."
Sleep Inn Clerk: "Okay, and what name will this be under?"
Fugitive: "Name? Uh...Bertram....ummm....Van....Munster"
Sleep Inn Clerk: "And how will you be paying for your room?"
Fugitive: "Um, in crisp, sequentially numbered one hundred dollar bills."
Sleep Inn Clerk: "Sir, you are the fourth Bertram Van Munster paying with cash that we have seen this week. Are you a fugitive from the law?"
Fugitive: "Yes, I am. It feels so good to finally get that off my chest. I'm tired of the lies, deceit, and constant fear of being caught. Will you please call the cops and put an end to my misery?"
Sleep Inn Clerk: "No, sir, I will not. Fugitives actually make up 83% of our weekday clientèle at Sleep Inn. We would go out of business without you guys. My Six Sigma Green Belt project was to devise a way increase sales among your demographic. Let me explain my new fugitive retention program to you......")

Here were some other random thoughts from the other entries:

1. Whoever made the Michael Vick comment - classic! Made me laugh out loud.

2. My kids are so cute. Brandon and Whitney - I loved your posts!
3. Angie - Jeff nailed you when he busted you for playing the suck up card. You know I couldn't let you win on that one or all of my blog readers not named Angie would have boycotted me forever. The whole wild eyebrow thing is so much more fun than you could ever imagine.
4. Natalie - If I was your sister, I think I'd be getting a little bit misty eyed right now. That was touching. Thank you for bringing some class to this wacky blog for a change.
5. Andrea - One day we will just run off to the Cayman islands, I promise. You can be the Sting Ray City photographer and I can sell shoddy merchandise to unsuspecting cruise tourists. You know, like the guy in Tijuana who sold me "the greatest guitar in the world" for $18 but it wouldn't even stay in tune. Just buy me the plane tickets.
6. Shannon - Excellent insight on Bruce Wayne. I think being Jason Bourne would be too much for me. He seems to be so focused on solving the riddles to his past that I doubt he ever makes the time to play Madden or sit in the hot tub. I don't think I could live like that.
7. Paul - So is the reason you chose to work for the Federal Government right out of college just part of your ultimate plan to get in the White House? Shrewd, Paul, very shrewd. I'll try to get on your good side in the future. (P.S. Daneen - If Paul ever starts painting one of your phones red and mumbling to himself, please lock up all of his guns and call Shannon. She can save you with her crazy ninja skills.)
8. Sandy/Jake - You know that you just jinxed BYU and the only loss of their upcoming season will be to Eastern Washington. Thanks a lot! Saying what you said is like having John Madden say, "Drew Breese hasn't thrown an interception in last 245 attempts and is closing in on the NFL record. They say 90% of the game is half mental." The next play, Drew Breese will inevitably throw a pick. Honestly, if the Coogs lose that game, I'm sicking Shannon on you.

Dude, How Would It Be To Be That Dude?

Sunday, August 19, 2007

One of the blessings of being the father of a three-year-old little girl is being able to read classical literature to her. While we are not quite to Little Women or Pride and Prejudice yet, I think I have read every Disney book that mentions the word "princess" in it about a dozen times. One of these works of art is Cinderella III: A Twist in Time. In this book, the Evil Step Mother steals the magic wand and grants a wish to her daughter, the evil Anastasia, to switch places with Cinderella and be married to Prince Charming (I think his real-world name is Doyle Butz, which didn't test high enough on the "dreaminess" scale with test audiences so they settled on Charming). The switch-a-roo takes place one year after Cinderella and Doyle were married. After getting over the disturbing "I'm stealing my sister's husband" plot line, I asked myself, "If I had that magic wand, who would I switch places with?"

This is also the theme for this week's contest. Please submit the name of one person that you would want to switch places with for a day and why. I will get out my magic wand and grant the wish to the best entry. After careful consideration, here are some of my possibilities.

1. Bear Grylls - star of "Man vs. Wild" on Discovery Channel. I think every red-blooded male at one time or another has thought to himself, "I bet I could survive for a month in the jungle with nothing but a Rambo knife and a granola bar." Well, Bear actually goes out and does it. Since we do not have cable at home, I always hope that a Man vs. Wild marathon will be showing in my hotel room when I travel for work. On those evenings I'm usually up until 2:16 a.m. and then fall asleep with my glasses on, remote in hand, and cannot concentrate on the next day's meetings. Oh well, it's worth it. If I ever fall in quicksand, get attacked by a python, or fall through the ice and have to avoid blood-thirsty killer whales, I will be prepared to survive thanks to my good friend Bear.

2. Mario Williams - Defensive End, Houston Texans. He was the first overall pick in last year's NFL draft. He signed a 6-year, $54 million contract as a 21 year-old rookie. Mario is not only athletic and wealthy, but he is not held to the highest behavioral standards either. I read this today on and couldn't help but laugh at the following passage about Mario's "maturity" after a tough rookie season, "If you don't count his unscheduled appearance in a YouTube video driving his burnt-orange Lamborghini at 150 mph on a highway in North Carolina, it's been a pretty solid offseason for Williams.'He's matured a lot as a person,' second-year coach Gary Kubiak said. 'There's no doubt about that'". Hold on a second here. Have any of you ever even considered doing anything that reckless in your life? Probably not. Oh to be young, athletic, rich, and be considered to be on your best behavior for only driving your Lamborghini at 150 MPH.

3. Any NBA Player Not Named Jason Williams. There were three Jason Williams in the NBA at the same time. One of them accidentally shot and killed his chauffeur with a shot gun and then tried to cover up the crime. The other was a 1st round draft pick who nearly killed himself on a bullet bike before playing in his first NBA game. His leg was mangled so badly that they did not know if he would ever walk again. The final Jason Williams was kicked out of U. of Florida for drug offenses, drafted in the first round, and then suspended later by the NBA for failure to comply with its drug program. It was so confusing a couple of years ago to talk about Jason Williams and then have to clarify with, "No, I'm talking about the white guy with the drug problem, not the one in traction or the one convicted of negligent homicide."

4. Javier Sotomayor. He is the world record holder in the high jump with a leap of 8 feet 1/2 inches. I cleared 6'7" in high school and can only imagine what 8 feet must feel like.

Okay, there is my list. Please send me who you would like to trade places with and I will pick a winner.

New State Slogans

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Excellent comments from each of you on the alternate state slogans. While there were several chuckle-worthy entries that deserve some additional props, there is only one of them that I had the time, patience, and Microsoft Paint skills to turn into an actual license plate. (I am hoping that this is the only license plate that I ever make and that I am not one day pumping them out for $.25/hr. at San Quentin. I just saw a documentary about that prison and was impressed with the inmates' abilities to make shanks out of almost anything. The prison seemed to have the same feel as Kearns High School, where our basketball team goal was not to win, but to get home without multiple stab wounds.) Here are my subjective, biased thoughts on the submissions:

Arizona Winner:
-"But It's a Dry Heat." Loved this. I have lived in NC for the past four years after living in the Atacama Desert in Northern Chile, Tucson, and Las Vegas. I know what it feels like when the thermometer hits 115. When I try to explain to people in NC just how hot 115 is, many of them just dismissively say, "But it's a dry heat". I've felt 95 degrees with 90% humidity in Greensboro and, sure, it made me sweat like a farm animal, but the heat just cannot compare to the Arizona desert. I'll quote from Elder Chris Dixon's most recent letter to me. He is from Greensboro and serving in Las Vegas, "The one thing I hate is when people say, 'it's a dry heat', but what they don't realize is that when it's, hot, it's hot!" 'Nuf said, Elder.

Arizona Runners Up:
-"Trying to make you believe that xeriscaping actually looks pretty since 1984." You can only arrange dark maroon rocks so many ways. Plus I learned a new word that I had never heard before and I have a personal bias toward words that start with "X". If (big IF) we have any more kids, I'd love to name one of them Xander, Xavier, or any other name starting with "X". When playing sports, he or she could be called "The X-Factor"....I'm drooling with the possibilities right now....
-"Because rebelling against Daylight Savings Time is cool." Daylight Savings Time is one of the worst plagues that "conspiring men" have unleashed upon the world in the latter days. I can never adjust to waking up an hour earlier. I think this is just part of an evil conspiracy to make me late for 7:00 a.m. Bishopric meetings as my body adjusts to the time change over a 12-week period.
-"We beat the Yankees". I was living in Tucson when the Diamondbacks pulled off that completely magical World Series. Great group of guys on the team, thrilling games, and a big upset. The only more heart-warming baseball moment since then has been the feel good story of Barry Bonds' pursuit of Hank Aaron's home run record. (I just threw up a little bit in my mouth.)

Idaho Winner:
-"Home of that guy from the first season of the Apprentice.". Who could forget our beloved Troy, the guy who could pull off the "shucks, I'm just glad to be here. What with all the plumbin' and horseless carriages and all" shtick and then mercilessly pound his competition in the challenges? When we were out west a few years ago I saw his face on a gigantic billboard off of the freeway promoting his real estate business. Looks like he may of had some success after the show. Or he could have tried to strike while the iron was hot, failed miserably, and is now auditioning for Big Brother 12.

South Carolina Winner:
-"Hey Georgia, our state fruit is the peach TOO! Hahahahahaha!" I had always heard of the Georgia peaches, but had never known about SC's attempt to steal GA's peachy thunder until we drove from Arizona to North Carolina. As we went through SC, I kept thinking, "Get over the peaches already! That's Georgia's claim to fame." Since this whole blog entry began with Ohio trying to rip off nearly every other state's slogan, it is only fitting that South Carolina be recognized for their shameless lack of creativity.

And the Grand Prize Goes To:

Nicely done, Ang. Nicely done.