November 13, 2007

Face to Face

The art gallery on the first floor of my building is hosting this show:
"Face to Face, Encountering Homelessness..."

Not to be offensive, but in order to walk to this gallery from almost anywhere downtown (its on 2nd and 7th, the heart of downtown Minneapolis) you ARE going to come face to face with REAL homelessness. Just seems to me that looking at art depicting said condition would be a little anti-climatic.

More info.

September 25, 2007

Leader or Lemming?

I just finished up a solid week of training future leaders in the U.S. Navy. The newly select Chief Petty Officers completed the training and induction process and were pinned with their new anchors last Sunday. One of the benefits of being a Chief Petty Officer is the opportunity to continue my own learning during each season where we train our always have to continue learning. Leadership is the main topic - Chief Petty Officers are expected to this quote from Mark Sanborn's You don't need a title blog was especially fitting.
We need leaders, not assertive lemmings.

Figuring out which way the group is going anyway and a jumping in front is not leadership. ;)

August 08, 2007

Baby Bunnies

A couple of baby rabbits were discovered by my two dogs this week. I found the nest area, with the help of the dogs after I took the babies away. They weren't hurt, just slobbered on. Baby rabbits are pretty darn good at playing dead though. I put them back in the little hollow at the base of a tree at the edge of our yard and tried to keep the dogs away. Yesterday while I was at work, I was told by the wife and kids that the younger, stupider dog went ahead and killed one. The kids were pretty upset. At dinner time that night, the other baby was found in the garage with the younger dog's mouth around it again. It was ok though, and I decided we should try to figure out a way to keep this one alive. We were going to keep it in a box and feed it until it was big enough to run away from the stupid dogs. I went to the internet and found out that the best thing to do was to put the baby back and put a fence around the nesting area. Anyone with a garden knows that most fences won't keep out rabbits, but the idea is just to keep out the dogs. I put the baby back and stacked three pallets around the tree to keep the mutts away. We'll go back this afternoon and see if the doe (mom rabbit) visited last night to nurse the remaining baby. The web page we found said that the doe only comes to the nest once every 24 hours, usually late at night, so as not to draw attention to the babies. It also say that the mom won't abandon a baby because of human scent...hopefully the same applies to dog slobber.

August 03, 2007

Thoughts on God and Bridges

Over the last couple of days there has been a lot of coverage of the I35W Bridge collapse here in Minneapolis. One of the things I have noticed, and I don't really know why, is the presence of God. The President, the Governor and the Mayor have all uttered the phrase "our thoughts and prayers..."
News reporters and witnesses alike have used the phrase "but for the grace of God..." several times.
On the way in this morning I heard the story of a bystander feeling hopeless about not being able to help more. She called out to the crowd around her, "Does anyone want to pray with me?" At first she was met with looks of skepticism, then one person answered. Then another, and soon a dozen or more people were standing in a circle, holding hands, praying for the rescuers, the to be rescued and those who didn't survive the bridge collapse.
In the press conferences after the initial reporting started to become repetitive, there was talk of rebuilding, money being allocated and resources dedicated to ensuring this sort of thing doesn't happen again...and I heard the phrase more than once, "God willing..."
The same people that stand by and let God be taken out of the classroom, off our money, out of our pledge and basically removed from the public view are the ones that publicly invoke His name in times of need and tragedy. Its kind of sad, but I guess its the way God wants it. He's always here, no matter what we do to try and remove Him. We only notice when we need Him. Good Friends are always like that.

June 14, 2007

Who is this person we are looking for?

Mark Sanborn found a good article and wrote about it today.

Robert Kegan, the article's author says:

The tragedy of the Bush presidency is not about failure; it is about a conception of success that is much too simple.

Trying to boil everything down to red and blue, black and white or right and wrong just isn't going to cut it anymore. I really wonder what happened to taking the good with the bad. No candidate is going to make everyone happy; but is there someone complex enough to have qualities that will interest both sides and compel them to vote for a leader next November?

May 15, 2007

Saving money

Here's a question...if the whole album costs $9.99, but you are only interested in one song off the album, and you can get the single for $0.99 on iTunes, are you saving $9.00? I would probably like at least a few of the other songs on it, and who knows, when they are released as singles and I actually hear them, I might buy them for a dollar. In fact, I just went back out to iTunes to look, and there are 11 songs on it, one of which is a cover of the classic "Devil went down to Georgia." Maybe I should have spent the $9 extra.
I just realized I never mentioned the name of the band, or the album, so here it is.

Emerson Drive

May 10, 2007


Couple things today that I wanted to write down. Mark Sanborn talks about how he likes blogs (and likes TO blog) because he likes to write less and more frequently than stressing out about longer content on a regular basis - printed articles and books I imagine.
I am in the same boat, although I don't do either frequently. Of course his saying it is what prompted me to write this post, so although he'll probably never know it, his post caused action in others. Sometimes a reminder to yourself is that trigger that someone else is looking for.

I also posted something I read at the Meebo blog. They did a little research on Wikipedia about the origin of the emoticon, otherwise known as the smiley. Check it out on my quick-n-dirty _rock_tumblr.

Tumblr is pretty cool, especially if you are looking for a really, really quick and easy way to start blogging. It doesn't have all the bells and whistles that a typepad or have, but for some people, simple is good.

April 30, 2007


I know I have posted before about how dumb I think McDonalds is. Never said I would stop eating there, but I probably should from the whole health and fitness perspective.
Yesterday I picked up food there for one of my kids that didn't want Taco Bell like the other two and my wife. I saw their patented sign just before the drive-thru that said "for faster service, please have your money ready."
I always mentally reply "For EVEN FASTER service, please have my food ready!"
Of course, since I had ordered something with a slight change to how it is normally slapped together, I expected a slight delay. What actually happened was that I was directed around the corner to a parking spot with a sign in front of it that I was not surprised by, but also didn't expect.
"This spot reserved for parked drive-thru customers."
There were two spots.
Want me to repeat that for you?
"Parked Drive Thru Customers"

April 13, 2007

WTF for Friday April 13, 2007

I should really quit reading the news on my mobile phone. I have to rant a bit. The quote below relates to Jury Selection for the Padilla trial that is about to start.

"I'm confident there's a group of people out there like that who have no idea who Padilla is or who have no idea what a dirty bomb is or isn't," Anthony said. "I imagine that's the group they're ultimately going to get to court."

I thought juries were supposed to be impartial, not stupid.

March 09, 2007

Its not a secret

I have been noticing discussions on the radio, blogs and even face to face about "Secrets of Success." You can go to the book store or the web and pay money to learn the secrets. What I have been hearing though is that many of the secrets are really just novel ways of stating common sense. Knowledge that is easily found for free, or learned in your daily life, when presented by an expert in fluffy language is not secret.
That being said, here's a secret I learned today. And its free.
The only way to get things done is to actually sit down and do them.
I got some things done today. Finally.

Another week gone

I can't believe it is Friday again and so soon. It seems like I came in here and it was Monday and I had a plan for what I wanted to accomplish. I always hate Fridays because I am forced to look back on the week. By forced, I mean that at least in my civilian job I have to account for my time by submitting a time-sheet. Time flies by so fast that it is hard to look back to Monday now and even know where to start. First thing though, I have to get through the rest of today.

The link for today is to Mark Sanborn's latest post on You Don't Need a title.

I subscribe to his blog via Feedburner, and it is one of only two that I actually set to have delivered to my inbox. Today's post gives three steps toward an 'extraordinary' life driven by your internal forces. First step is recognize and believe. The second step is identify. The third step is implement. Damn that third step.

March 06, 2007

Update on writing...

The quote was from Francis Bacon.

"Reading makes a man broad but writing makes an exact man."

I have yet to achieve any level of exactness.

Writing to write

I have a quote on my wall at work, and I can't remember who said it. I keep thinking of the quote though, so its content for me is more powerful than the person who actually said it. Paraphrased, it is 'reading makes a well rounded man, but writing makes a complete man'
If its true, I am far from complete. Since my middle boy just came down to my office for some homework help, its not surprising that I never take time to write. Its one of those things that I wish I would make time for.
I have Collen Mariah Rae's book Movies in the Mind - How to build a short story turned, cover facing out, on my desk's book shelf. Must of been a half subconscious effort to remind myself.
I have completely paid the tuition for the Institute for Children's literature course but have yet to complete a single assignment.
I have had this blog for years, probably since shortly after was launched, and only have now approached the 200 posting mark. Some of the posts were writing, but most were just links and snide comments about something.
Perhaps this is the first of more writing posts, perhaps its a stab at something I know I want but don't know how to get. Here's to hoping I figure it out.

February 23, 2007

If nobody ever reads this.

Two things I would add to Seth's post about "If nobody reads your blog..."

1) Eventually, someday, someone will. So you have to write with that in mind.
2) If even one person does, that is enough to make you keep doing it.


February 21, 2007

Web 2.0 ... The Machine is Us/ing Us

Yeah, just go to the link.

This video is a good short introduction to "what" web 2.0 is, at a very high level. Its not too technical. Good music background too.

February 19, 2007

Why not win?

Even Tony Snow said it yesterday...We will provide our troops what they need to complete their mission.

I think I'd rather win. We completed missions in all the wars we have fought. We completed missions in the first Gulf war. I am tired of just completing missions, I think we should try to win.

Bet that viewpoint isn't going to get me elected to anything, is it? Except may vice-president of my local Chief's association.


I think it was Mark Sanborn that said you should always spend some time reflecting on what the Most Important Lesson Of The Day was...MILOTD. Today, so far, for me...yeah, if you keep your chapstick in your pants pocket, don't be surprised if it is warm and mushy when you want to use it.

February 02, 2007

Squeeze ball-guy

Originally uploaded by Dixbert!.
I am allowed to start rehabing the ligament in my finger that I damaged 6 weeks ago. This is my new workout partner.

January 30, 2007

Want to be a leader?

Mark Sanborn is starting to say what I hear and believe - there are no leaders coming. President Bush made some mistakes. He owned up to them and is moving forward. All we ever hear from those against the war, nay, against the President, are tirades. What's your plan? Hillary wants to be the LEADER of the nation. Tell me how you are going to lead...because if all you are going to do for 4 years in office is bitch about your predecessor then you you aren't a leader, just a bitch. What's the plan? What would you do differently? I am listening. (Feel free to speak for her, Dem readers, I know she probably doesn't subscribe to my blog.)