Traffic for 2004 December

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[Comments] (5) Never In All Israel: I had my estates final last Saturday, and my Financial final today. Then tomorrow is my ethics final, and I don't have a Strategy final, just a paper due tomorrow. That leaves me with only one final during finals week next week. Hmm, well, I guess I can work and enjoy a 3-week break before diving into my last semester. I'll know how students at other universities feel I guess.

I had to change my BYU password today. I've had my old password since before my mission, and they are just making me change it my final semester here? I am NEVER going to remember that I changed it.

It appears that both the Y and the U are coach shopping. I don't know who would want the job. Honestly, every year your job is on the line, not to mention that your name is daily burned in efigy by a very unforgiving quasi-mob called fans and alumni. Sounds worse than being a Senator!

In conclusion, here is the latest from a Dr. Seuss know-it-all.

Mom, as the resident expert, I would be interested to know if this article is fact or fiction. And to think I thought it was just silliness. (Sorry, you have to scroll to the bottom to read the article, entitled "The Green Side of Seuss." All other articles are little more than Mormon dribble. Read at your own peril).

[Comments] (3) Workin' the Connections: OK, so who here knows someone who knows someone who is related to someone that can get us a good deal on our upcoming cruise/trip to somewhere exotic?

[Comments] (3) Four Funerals and a Service Project in an Angel Tree: Today one of my coworkers went to a funeral. Then as I was driving home for lunch, I saw a funeral in the cemetary. And Susie and I are reading The Christmas Box wherein Mary's little girl died. I guess when we aren't faced with it everyday, we sometimes forget that death is always affecting someone.

But on to happier news....Susie and I have been sponsoring the United Way Sub for Santa again this year in our ward. We went shopping yesterday and have now acumulated gifts for 12 children in our living room. Tonight we deliver them to the United Way, so that the parents can wrap them. It's interesting to see who donates, who doesn't, and who says they will but never come through.

It is also refreshing to see how much people give. My finance professor last year told us that "If you aren't willing to give when you have little, you will be less likely to give when you have a lot." I am happy our neighbors are so generous with the little they have. This project always makes it feel like Christmas.

[Comments] (10) Consipracies among the Women's Movement: So Thursday was my last final. After the test, I decided to celebrate the blessed event with some Susie-less Christmas shopping. Some Secret Santa I turned out to be. Though I was able to acquire one gift on my own, I had to call Susie to ask for help in buying the others.

I wanted to buy her some nice clothes for her job. So I snooped in her closet for pant and shirt sizes, and set off to the mall. Well, her pant size appears, on average, to be a 10, and her shirt size a Small/Medium. So imagine my surprise when, at the two stores I looked at, the shirt sizes came in numbers and the pant sizes came in letters.

What a joke! I think some big shot poo-pah at Calvin Klein or Neiman Marcus (a woman no doubt) decided that it gave her power to confuse men this way. Kinda like the sophisticated, 21st century answer to burning one's bra, so to speak. Well, if I ever meet up with her....

I guess Susie will have to rely on Santa Claus for her lavish presents this year. I'm sure his cronies (the elves) don't conform.

[Comments] (3) Revenge of the Couch Potatoes: So I don't ask for much in life. I enjoy sipping hot wassail and watching "The Amazing Race" on Tuesday nights. Susie and I had borrowed Elf from my sister-in-law, and decided we would watch that until 8, and then switch over to our much anticipated reality show.

Except the show was ENDING when we tunred the movie off. Apparently it was moved up an hour to make way for a bunch of Elvis impersonators to sing Christmas carols. The Chinese have the only phrase that adequately portarys my emotions at such a time as this: "GAUCHOA!" These really are the times that try men's souls.

The most infurating aspect of it all was that I missed it for Elf. All I heard from everyone was how funny this show was, and how well Will Farrell did in his debut movie. I don't know who could possibly find his humor funny, excepting some eight year-old who has yet to be exposed to Home Alone or The Three Stooges before. Honestly, the humor was trite, predictable, and way overdone. I didn't laugh the first time Will got hit by a taxi, nor did I laugh the six other times it happened. I didn't laugh when he beat up the "fake" Santa, nor did I laugh when he pulled down his tights in front of his father's wife. I saw every joke coming a mile away, and saw every plot set-up's ensuing ending about 40 minutes into this "show." Give me the good old humor of Ralphie and his Christmas Story anyday. The kid getting his tongue stuck to the pole; now that's comedy!

Now a few words to my favorite Hindu, Sumana: I was saddened that you will be unable to come to Zion next week and bask in her glory. You'll miss Temple Square, cold, inversions without snow, a Christmas present I wrapped myself for you, peppermint bark, and more. But I understand your plight. Customer service. Been there; suffered through that. I did my time for eight months until I was promoted to accounting. Now in my new job, I sit next to the customer service peeps. They bicker and scream and backbite their cohorts who don't take as many calls as they do in a day, work long hours (and holidays), and no one says "Thank You" often enough. My only bit of advice is that you initiate a career move as soon as is humanly possible. I also hope that you make it here before we skidaddle next year.

In closing, Christmas Eve movie this year (now that LOTR is over and Middle Earth is saved) is A Series of Unfortunate Events. I am really getting excited, and am almost done with the eleventh book! And we already have next year's movie picked out: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, hitting theaters December 2005. In an effort to be PC, I will close with a simple Happy Holidays!

[Comments] (3) Ta Dum!: Here are some neat-o pics of my temple!

Also, Sumana, I am very excited to see you researching Mormon doctrine and Mormonisms in general. But just want to remind you that things posted on the web may not necessarily portray the church, as well as an individual or group's perspective on the church. Susie and I are always available to "take your interest to the next level" if you wish. We are just a phone call away! (Or a 10-hour drive away, if you prefer). Maybe we should meet halfway in Reno some weekend.

[Comments] (2) Ebert & John: So. Series of Unfortunate Events, the movie, is highly recommended by this writer. From the very beginning about the happiest elf, to the very ending, including a spyglass society and a bunko marriage, I was enthralled! Jim Carrey did an excellent job in his multiple roles, and did a job of not overshadowing the movie with his witty personality we all so love (or despise, depending on your particular affinity to laughter). Sunny, played by twins, was adorable. She made me laugh; she made me cry; but mostly she made me laugh.

Unlike the first handful of books, the movie was made with the end in mind. It concluded itself like it must, but was open-ended enough for a series to be born. Yes, it's true: A Series of Unfortunate Events could easily turn into a series of movies. We would be fortunate to have it so. For those of you who don't see it, for shame.

Today at work I was trying to think of some fun wintertime activities Susie and I can do, what with it being our last winter in this cold, dark, forboding place we call Provo. Then I stumbled across this article in the Deseret News.

To me, the funnest activities include the sledding with the built-in lift (how ingeneous) and the Day at "Utah Olympic Park." The day includes a run down the bobsled track. But with a sticker price of $200 per person, that is one dang expensive minute. I guess that rules that one out; sorry Susie.

Leonard and mom are on their way, stuck somewhere between Nephi and a hard place as we speak. Though they are Sadie-less, we welcome them nonetheless.

[Comments] (6) Endings & Beginnings: Time to wrap up the holidays in a boring entry. After seeing the printed blog books, I understand that this is really a journal of sorts, and since I can type faster than I can write, I'll "blog" my boring life, if not for perusers of crummy.com, then for posterity (who also probably do not really care).

So. Grades came out. Four A's and one A-. But the GPA is stuck at 3.90, and will stay there indubitably. GPA's, like the stock market and interest rates, just don't go up these days too much. They can plummet, however. But I am proud of my efforts.

Bought books today for my very very last semester of grad school. Yay! But I only bought half of them, spent over $300, and some of them were used. The cashier noted that buying tax textbooks is almost as painful at paying taxes. I concurred while signing away my Christmas earnings.

In case I never noted this before, I left my old campus job back in November. My boss was affecting my personal life negatively, and my testimony required me to leave. Our neighbor, who also had worked there for three years, left as well. Enough was enough. So since I only had one final during finals week (the others were early), I started a full-time job at Q Comm in Orem. They sell prepaid phone cards at convenience stores for AT&T, Verizon, etc. If a card misprints, I verify the card was never used and refund it. It's a nice job, I can take as many breaks as I want, and it makes me appreciate customer service. I sit next to the two customer service people (they are very understaffed) and what they go through reminds me why I am getting a college education. Actually, one of them has a degree in international studies from BYU, so I guess it really reminds me why I am in school getting a practical, useful education.

Christmas was with the Chadwick clan this year. Highlights included seeing A Series of Unfortunate Events. My family of 15 took up a whole row of seats at Jordan Commons. I also played "Baseball Monopoly" with Justin multiple times, and played it with Tyler as well. Tyler's verson had us using the markers (a pitcher and a batter). I was always the pitcher and Tyler was the batter. I would have the marker pitch every time Tyler said "Pitcher me, John!"

We visited Grandma June, who gave all the grandkids a whole $10 if we came to her house on Christmas Day. And Christmas Eve was spent at Aunt Brigitta's, where I ate as much Swedish bread as I could get my hands on. Susie got to be Santa Lucia and hand out the candy with a candle crown on her head (an old Swedish tradition).

For Christmas I got ties (exciting I know) and a DVD set of Charlie Brown holiday shows. Watching those shows with the kids made me feel like I was 7 again.

My parents bought a trundle day bad for Susie and I to sleep on, but I didn't sleep well any of the nights there (and it had nothing to do with excitement for Santa Claus). I honestly think I sleep better on the floor with the kids.

We also made Christmas cookies, and Ember was so excited to help. I was always trying to get Ember and Tyler to agree on the same game, as they wanted me to be two places at once to play exclusively with them. For New Year's, we are also spending it with Logan and Ember.

Monday night mom and Leonard came. I worked while they were here, with the exception of Wednesday. That day we went to the Soup Kitchen in SLC and to the planetarium at the Gateway. Leonard and Susie looked at the exhibits while I waited in line for 45 minutes with about 600 ankle-biters screaming loud enough to give me a headache. The star show was on a satellite headed to Saturn to take pictures. Apparently it is the first of a mini-series, as the satellite had yet to relay any pictures back to Earth yet. A rather disappointing show, if I do say so, especially at $8 a head. Oh well, it was educational (in a speculative, we really don't know the truth about Saturn, way).

The used book store had a copy of Little Black Sambo, a book we had when I was small. I longed to buy it, but since it is so rare, the children's ten-page picture book was going for 75 bones. I couldn't justify the cost, since one of our children would probably rip it to shreds anyhow. I'll save myself the money and the anticipated ansgt.

Reading about the earthquake and tsunami in Asia has occupied my free time lately. Though I am glad it did not reach the Kong, I am sad to know that so much death and destruction could honestly have been avoided. Susie and I have pledged a meager amount to LDS Humanitarian Aid to help; it's not much, but should help somebody I hope. My prayers go out to those people. At times like this, many reports I have read conclude with the writer contemplating why God would allow such a thing to happen. The only answer I can give is that God does not micromanage our lives, but does take care of us. His work and glory is to "bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of mankind." That doesn't include anything about preserving physical life or pain in this life. I hope those affected can find closure to this catastrophe and find peace in their own timeframe.

It has been a good 2004 and I look forward to embracing a good 2005.


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