Thursday, March 6, 2008

Like a washboard...

No, this post isn't about my abs. I wish it could be so, but unfortunately my abs more closely resemble a pillow, and a hairy one at that. Hairy pillows are gross, which is why I've begun working out again. I wanna turn this baby into a hairy washboard. Who doesn't love a hairy washboard?

Anyway... with my silly vanities aside, let me tell you a story. It's not really that interesting, but you should read it anyway. You've probably had the same experience.

So I had just exited from I-15 onto University Parkway, traveling eastward. It was a nice night. Children were playing somewhere. I could feel it.

I glanced up and to my right to see a pleasant looking neon fish glowing hospitably in the darkness. I smiled. The fish, in a strange, neon-fishy way seemed to smile back, although in a manner that didn't really resemble a smile at all and is still not entirely understood by me. Remember, I am only a novice when it comes to reading signs. Just behind this fish was the sign for the International House of Pancakes. It didn't glow, but was lit dimly from behind with cheap fluorescent lighting. It wasn't half as charming as the fish, and I couldn't help but wonder why the International House of Pancakes had done away with it's quaint, Bavarian charm. The old restaurants looked more like cathedrals. Their signs were beautifully carved by Swedish elves, from only the finest of fancy European woods. Pancakes were a serious - if not somewhat holy - food back then, and the International House of Pancakes understood this. I think the owner of the company must have died and left the corporate ownership to some young, cocky nimrod - the kind of guy that favors acronyms, like IHOP, and cheap, second-rate food. It's just not as good as it used to be.

Anyway, I was driving down University Parkway and all of this is going through my head. All of the sudden, my car is lurching and bouncing like a rodeo bull on an energy drink. Dust surrounds my car, literally obscuring my view beyond the car ahead of me, and a cacophony of sounds emanate from below the floor of my car... BAM! BOOM! CRONKLE! SCRRGGHHH! At this point I am certain that one of three things has happened to me:

Situation A - It's a car accident. Crap.

Situation B - For some reason, we are under attack by Russians and I am in the middle of the crossfire which will eventually lead to a world war. Crap.

Situation C - After years of being trodden upon, King Asphalt decides he's had enough and revolts to claim his rightful throne by eating all of the cars in the world. Crap.

This lasted for a good ten seconds. Then, as fast as it came, the dust cleared and I was riding smoothly. I quickly peered into my rear view mirror to survey the damage behind me, and as I distanced myself from the scene I could see other cars bouncing and lurching through the dust, much in the same way my car did.

Well, in subsequent drives I've come to realize that the culprit of the mini-disaster was a bunch of potholes. These are potholes from hell, though. We're talking about a 200 foot stretch of asphalt riddled with loose, jagged conglomerate and holes easily three or four inches deep.

Why hasn't it been fixed? Too much traffic? Are they waiting for the road to be completely broken before they take action? Who are THEY, anyway? Provo? Orem? Who does that area of town belong to?

I've decided to tackle this dilemma over a healthy stack of pancakes.

IHOP, anyone?


Sunday, March 2, 2008

A Stale Life...

Stale. The word evokes memories of biting into that cracker that wasn't quite crispy, nor quite chewy, but somewhere in between. It's gross. Little kids spit stale out. Adults smile and pretend it's okay, but secretly push the mass of nastiness into a napkin as they wipe their mouths. Nothing stale is ever good. It represents a lack of progress - a process wherein spark and spice fade quietly into the darkness of a pine cupboard.

Can life get stale? You bet your butt it can.

When a child sees life getting stale, they tap into their little resources of creativity and imagination to make things better. I think that as adults, however, we're more prone to accepting a stale life. We look for patterns, habits, and methods to bring familiarity and order to our lives. While it is necessary to organize our time as responsibilities grow, it is equally important to throw some spontaneity into the daily grind to keep things from becoming too monotonous.

Anyway, I wanted to get feedback on what you all do to keep life spicy. I have my ways of keeping myself on my toes (eating at that place I've never eaten, listening to new music, etc.) Now tell me what you do. :)