Category Archives: Local Craziness

Utah Flags Fly at Half Mast as a Prophet is Lost

Mormons around the world are in mourning today as news spreads that LDS church president Gordon B. Hinckley passed away.

As for me, I have to admit that at first I didn’t like President Hinckley. But over time, I grew to love him as one of my church’s most prolific, energetic, and lively prophets in recent times.

For many people, Hinckley was perhaps the most influential prophet in their lifetime. Now, prophets tend to stick around for awhile (Hinckley for 12 years) so younger folks such as myself haven’t been through that many, but each prophet in my time has certainly left their mark. One of the legacies Hinckley leaves behind is a massive temple-building program that more than doubled the number of operating temples to over 100.

Spencer W. Kimball is the prophet I have the earliest memory of. He is, of course, most well known for having the revelation that allowed all worthy men to hold the priesthood, something that he had wanted since before becoming prophet and something he spent a lot of time on his knees praying for.

Ezra Taft Benson was probably most well known for his ultra-conservative views. Unfortunately, some people decided to leave the church when he became prophet. They didn’t bother sticking around long enough to see his dramatic change. Some people (myself included) contribute his change to the fact that he was directly humbled by “the man upstairs.”

Howard W. Hunter is the shortest serving prophet in modern times. Prophet for just 9 months, his very short term of service left some to wonder why the Lord would let a man be His mouthpiece for so short a period of time. But Hunter is perhaps my favorite. When he spoke, it seemed the world stopped to listen. Maybe it was because his health was so bad, everybody knew he wasn’t going to be around for long. Nonetheless, when he did speak, it was a powerful treat to hear him.

As to Hinckley, I was beginning to think he would live forever. He was born the same year as my grandfather, but managed to outlive him by just over 11 years. Hinckley became prophet at the ripe ol’ age of 84, and many wondered how long he would stick around at that age. If anybody bet on it, I’m sure they lost.

Hinckley was also one of the most qualified persons to take the post. As a 2nd counselor to an increasingly unhealthy Kimball in the 80′s (and due to 1st counselor Romney’s failing health as well) Hinckley essentially lead the church during that time. The same happened when he was 1st counselor to Benson as Benson’s health began to fail.

If things go as planned, Thomas S. Monson will become our next prophet. With a very different personality than Hinckley, it will be interesting to see what direction he takes the church.

But for now, here’s to you Brother Hinckley!

More Cellphone Photos

Well, it’s been awhile since I last posted. Yep, it’s been a little crazy busy lately. But now that I get a nice four-day weekend, I figured I’d put a little sumthin’-sumthin’ up.

Longtime readers may be wondering where my anti-Christmas rant is for the year. Well, like I said, it’s been busy. But this and this ought to suffice.

In the meantime, I think it’s time for another cellphone pictures post.

First up: Here’s a picture of a Murcielago I happened upon on my way home from work one day.

Lamborghini Mucielago

That huge blob at the bottom of the photo? My finger. Yeah, I’m an idiot. Luckily, my fingers didn’t get in the way of this next one.

I saw this ’57 ‘Vette on my way back from lunch one day. I stopped and asked the owner if I could take a picture.

1957 Chevy Corvette

Here’s an interesting look into my work (although this incident happened at my previous job). An intro might help. Since I worked in the marketing department of this company, I had gone out and purchased Cory Rudl’s (may he rest in peace) Internet Marketing thingermajinger lesson book thing. It cost me $200.

Well, our biz dev manager worked out a partner deal with these guys, went up to Canada to visit them, and received two free copies of an updated version.

After screaming, “What the hell?!” I grabbed my $200 copy and threw on the ground, picked it up and threw it again. The pages all came flying out of the binder. My coworker, Ryan (aka Buck as most of us call him), was not happy that I was making a mess of the workplace, so he grabbed all the papers and threw them all over my cubicle. Nice!

IMC Death

Speaking of Buck, this is what happens at my former work place when you decide to go on vacation:

Buck returns from vacation

Yeah, so Buck and I had worked up to 4 weeks of paid vacation, but you have to really think hard about whether or not you actually wanted to ever use it.

As long as we’re on the subject of childish behavior…

So I’ve been teaching Sunday School to teenagers in the various wards I’ve lived in for the last 3 out of 4 years. In my previous ward, one of my students grabbed my phone and snapped this photo while I wasn’t looking:

Britney steals Stu's phone

Sorry for embarrassing you Britney. She is actually a very pretty girl when she’s not making faces. No, really!

And just to show that teenage behavior is the same no matter where you live; in my new ward, another one of my students stole my phone and snapped this beautiful picture of my hand.

Jake steals Stu's phone

Remember the biz dev manager that resulted in the death of my Internet Marketing thinger manual? Well, he broke his ankle a while back, and I had the pleasure of being among the first to sign his cast.

Jared's broken ankle

As long as we’re on Jared, the biz dev manager; he often gets to go to free Jazz games where one of the partners he works with owns a suite. At one game, while he was stuffing his face with all-you-can eat shrimp and crab legs, I was up in the nose bleeds with my good buddy Brad.

Brad and Stu at a Jazz game

And yes, we really were in the nose bleed section:

Nose bleeds at a Jazz game

And finally…

I have to apologize to Senator Edwards on this for a rather unflattering photo of him, but I was trying to hurry and snap this before it changed.

This occurred during a democratic presidential debate several weeks ago.

John Edwards at presidential debate

I think the look on Edwards’ face makes it clear what his thoughts on the matter are: “What the hell is a positon?”

So there you have it folks. A nice long post to make up for a long absence.

Edit: 12/28/2007

One sweet show-winning Mustang for good measure:

Mustang II

Another WWII Vet, Man of God, and Native Deltan is Lost

I’ll take a break from chasing after “Utah SEO” to give props to one James E. Faust.

For those that haven’t heard, President James E. Faust, veteran of the Army Air Corps (precursor to the Air Force) during World War II, died just after midnight early this morning. We have lost a good man.

Hearing the news reminded me, some of these guys are getting up there in the years. President Hinckley is just a few years from becoming a centenarian, and Monson, who many thought was a sure bet to someday become President when he became an Apostle at the age of 37, is now 80 years old. Although, if his appearance is any indication, he’ll end up living another 30 years!

Packer, in line to be President after Monson, is 85 and not likely to make it. I have to admit, I’d love to see Packer as President. He seems like an old-school kind of feller. He just might be what we need to put us all in our place. Heck, I know I could use a good puttin’ in my place.

But as healthy as Hinckley is (I’d love to see him hit the big one double-o), we just might have to call a 21 year old fresh RM to ensure that somebody makes President before hitting 80 years of age.

That’s a joke of course. Whatever the age, I’m sure future presidents will serve the church in fine manner.

Here’s to James E. Faust, fine servant of mankind and the Lord.

KBULL Apologizes to Save Face

Things have been busy as of late, but I felt I should mention that the guys over at KBULL (see my last post) have decided to apologize for their gaffe extraordinaire.

Is it sincere? Of course it is… if by sincere you mean, “Sincerely sorry word got out about what horrible people they are.”

I can only give them props for making the right move after the fact. Hey, I’ve made plenty of mistakes in my life, and I’m glad nobody’s blogging about them ;)

Hopefully they learn from it, but I can’t help but feel that old dogs don’t learn new tricks very well. My guess is that the DJ’s who committed this horrible act haven’t become any more caring for others than before. But hey, life goes on.

Coming soon:

  • I have very sadly left the greatest place in the world to work.
  • Local driver runs a red light.
  • Orange soda is good stuff.
  • Why having a Mormon president is so bad.
  • More craziness.

Until next time…

K-BULL 93 (emphasis on BULL) Does It Again

Here in Utah, around 1993, the radio station known as Z-93 (a classic rock station) was getting ready to change hands. During the transition, they played nonstop the sound of a robotic voice counting down the days and hours. What the voice was counting down to, nobody really knew.

Personally, I didn’t care. The voice reminded me of Stephen Hawking, a personal hero of mine, and so I thought it was cool. Then when the countdown was finished, they started playing… *gasp* …country music!!!

That they took away my opportunity to endlessly listen to a Stephen Hawking impersonator count away the hours was bad enough. But to add insult to injury by playing country music… I didn’t think they’d ever be able to top my disappointment.

Well, just a couple days ago they did just that.

Those who know me understand my position on the American military, and how much I respect those who choose to serve. And just so we’re straight on this, the American military is an all volunteer force. Once you decide to serve, I don’t want to hear a lick of whining from anybody about how difficult or hard it is to do their duty. Serving one’s country is a right and an HONOR! It’s also hard, much more difficult than most Americans are willing to put up with, and for that I respect their decision to serve.

And while a whining serviceman or servicewoman makes me wanna vomit until I can vomit no more, those who pretend to support those in the service then turn around and stab them in the back make wanna just… well, if I said how it makes me feel, it could get me in a lot of trouble. If there’s one thing Drill Instructor Sergeant Newton taught me, it was to know when to lock it up.

And thus we come back around to the bull-oney bastards for whom this rant is directed at.

K-BULL 93, supposed supporters of our troops and their families, offered movie tickets to a military wife who earlier in the day had seen her husband off as he returned to Iraq to complete his deployment (as far as I can tell, he had a couple weeks of leave, and was returning to Iraq to finish his tour).

After waiting on hold for some time (30 minutes according to one witness) to give her information to the bull-oney eaters, she was disconnected. After calling back, she was referred to the station’s business office whereupon she called the business office, received no answer, and so left a message.

The office never called back, and the military wife never received her tickets.

The military wife’s good friend, anxious to do the things that good friends do for each other, emailed the station to report the situation and asked hopefully if there was anything they could do to make things right. A few other friends, also trying to help out, sent emails to the station as well.

At this point, all is well. There was just a misunderstanding, and a few friends were letting the radio station know how disappointing it was for their friend to have things fall through, and anything the station could do to rectify the situation would be great.

So how did the bull-oney freaks respond? By calling the military wife and yelling at her for getting her friends to gang up on the radio station and “inundate” them with email. And that’s just the beginning. Catch a more complete story here:

http://emlouisa.com/?p=240

Now, let it be known that I have no idea whether this is a true story or not. But I do know somebody that knows somebody that knows the original story teller. They all swear it’s true, and that’s good enough for me. Plus, I’m still pissed that they got rid of the Stephen Hawking impersonator!

I hereby call upon all those within Utah to avoid listening to K-BULL-oney 93 at all costs! Furthermore, let’s show them the true meaning of “inundate.” Fire up your emails boys and girls and go to town!

Optionally, you can attend events held by the bull-oney eaters and throw tomatoes at them or something. Make sure they are rotten tomatoes, not the hard green ones you buy at the store. We don’t want anybody getting hurt now do we?

If you’re lazy like me, just call the station at 801-485-6700

Have fun, and remember, ummm… just get to work!

Recent Happenings

I was going through some old pictures I’ve taken with my cell phone. Here are some of the more interesting images…

Nobody ever believed me when I told them that I could type over 60 wpm on a standard QWERTY keyboard. That in and of itself is not particularly amazing, but it’s a bit more impressive being that I do it with one hand, and that my time slows significantly due to the fact that I have to look at the keyboard when typing, so I can’t read and type at the same time like all you normal two-armed folk.

Here’s the proof of my accomplishment, as witnessed by others as it happened:

OK, that’s not from my cell phone. It’s the results of a typing test I took at TypingTest.com

Next up: McDonalds. First they tried doing home delivery (that flopped), then DVD rentals, and now they’re trying to move in on the “QuickCash” check-advance market as indicated by this sign I saw recently at the local franchise:

It’s hard to see, but the sign says, “need some cash apply within.”

As long as we’re on the subject of fast food, how’s this for the physical form of an oxymoron (snapped in front of the local Burger King)?

OK, so it’d be more of an oxymoron if the car were, say, a Maybach. But the Delorean is nearly as rare.

I love the Burger King! And they love me, as evidenced by this, perhaps the greatest invention since the cupholder itself:

And finally, the piece de resistance…

The image didn’t turn out well. It was taken through the windshield of my car, while we were both moving. I tried to wait until we got to a red light, but wouldn’t you know it… for the one time in my life we hit every light green. So I had to grab this fast before he turned off.

In some red goo stuff, the back window reads, “Yes. I would be delighted.” I’m thinking it was a response to a dance invitation such as high school prom. Because it’s so hard to see, I outlined the important part, where it says “Yes” in big letters.

And yes, that’s a swastika hanging off the “s”. It takes a very special person to be stupid enough to drive around town with a swastika put on his back window by his girlfriend. I mean real stupid; like, I don’t know, a white-supremasist nazi kind of stupid?

Back to 1985

I was on my way to lunch Monday afternoon when I saw the following:

A rare site. I personally have only seen a Delorean perhaps twice before. Once in Seattle (1992) and once on the freeway passing through Sandy (1993). It seems like there was one other time I saw one, but the specifics of that encounter escape me.

By comparison, I’ve seen over a dozen Ferraris (although no McLarens yet) and two Lamborghinis.

So why did it take me until Friday to post this when it was Monday I saw the beasty? Because it took me that long to figure out how to get the picture off my *$#@! camera phone! Which I just realized, nobody ever would have dreamed of such a thing in 1985.

I honestly never thought I’d ever have any use for such a silly device. I mean, a phone that’s also a camera? About as useful as a time machine that’s also a car. What will they think of next?

Uniting With My Fellow Depressed Bloggers

I was browsing around some of the other blogger.com blogs here in my home town of Orem. I was quite astonished at what I found!

Apparently most bloggers are a rather depressed people, using their blogs to talk about why they’re depressed and explain how the whole world hates them. Despite the lack of logic or common sense in their rantings, I was starting to feel left out.

I mean, I’m a blogger and I’m in Orem, so why aren’t I so depressed about life? It could be that I’m nigh 32 years old and have just learned that life sucks and to deal with it. Maybe I just don’t remember the depressing teenage years when we were all depressed for absolutely no reason. I mean if teenagers had any idea how much more difficult life was going to get for them, then they’d all probably just kill themselves on the spot.

But I digress, on with why the world hates me and I have every right to be depressed…

This guy I work with thinks that I, along with my wife, my parents, my two brothers, nearly all my in-laws, about half the people I’ve ever worked with in my life, President Bush (and probably every U.S. president before him), about 90% of all college students, 59 of the 60 members in my USMC basic training platoon, and Hugh Hefner should all be thrown in jail. Why? Because we all fornicated. Now I know fornication is bad, but jail, where I’m likely to wind some bad man’s girlfriend?

But that’s okay. I just referred to him as a flippin’ fetcher and called it even.

Let’s see, what else?

I get cutoff several times a day while I’m driving. They must all hate me.

My neighbor and landlord waved at me and, with a smile on his face, told me, “Good morning!” He’s a hypocrite because I’m sure he hates me.

The checker down at the Burger King wasn’t smiling when she asked me for my order. She must hate me… *sigh*

My parents raised me, put a roof over my head, kept me clothed, and kept me fed. But my dad left me every day to go to work. He must’ve really hated me… *really deep sigh*

It was raining this morning. Mother Nature hates me.

Maybe I’ll just move to Canada. Everybody there loves everybody else I hear… BWAH HAHAHA!!! Okay, I can’t keep a straight face when I talk about Canada. Sorry to all the Canooks out there eh!

What was I talking about again?

Totally Awesome Computers Closes Its Doors

The talk of the town around here is the announcement by “Super” Dell Schanze regarding the closing of his Totally Awesome Computers stores.

The reaction by a good number of the people around me has been quite surprising. Believe it or not, people are joyous of this sad occassion. I hear comments like,

“He’s an idiot.”
“He’s annoying and I don’t care.”
“I hate him anyway.”

I used to know Dell personally. I worked out with him back in his pre-Totally-Awesome-Computers days. I’ve met his family. I admit that the last time I talked to him was in 1999, and it’s quite possible that he’s changed since then.

But the Dell Schanze I know is a good guy and I have absolutely nothing bad to say about him. To be surrounded by people who only know him from his TV commercials trash his good name… well frankly, it pisses the hell out of me.

Sure, there may have been some bad decisions made, but what one of us wouldn’t have been equally upset if you were treated by the media in the same manner?

My every experience with Dell has been a positive one. When I talked to him in 1999, he didn’t remember me. Nonetheless, he treated me with the utmost respect and professionalism. If I treated him disrespectfully, I’m sure that would have changed. After all, I can understand. I’ve been fired from customer support positions twice in the past because of my tendency to “fight back” when a person gets in my face or insults or offends me.

And who doesn’t want to stand up for themselves when the world around you (most of whom don’t even know you) is saying bad things about you?

Dell Schanze has my complete support. And I’ve already been insulted by people that never met the man because of it. Nations have gone to war because of false judgements. In a town that is nearly 90% Mormon (and 100% of us a hypocrite to some degree), when are we going to learn to reserve judgement and be kind to our fellow man?

I spent some time reading several media articles regarding this story. Nearly every person interviewed that knows Dell personally had only good things to say about him, albeit they were also apologetic of his antics. Now why would the people that know him best have only good things to say about him even while the rest of Utah is trashing him?