Nov. 28 1. Priesthood. 2. President Monson: http://new.lds.org/general-conference/2010/10/the-divine-gift-of-gratitude?media=video&lang=eng 3. Organizing, for some reason I am grateful that I have the capacity to organize. I think it's cool to be able to create like that.
Nov. 27 1. Good friends to spend time with after flying. And Johnny we watched some of Curious George together. 2. The temple, I didn't go today, I'm just grateful for that lodestar. 3. My mom said it was one of her best Thanksgivings ever.
Nov. 26 1. The Washington DC Zoo. 2. The Borne Ultimatum movie. All of them really. Never gets old. 3. Scott for driving me to the metro.
Nov. 25 1. My mission. I would drop anything to go back for six months if I was asked. 2. Being poor. It's so much easier to live simply and to keep track of stuff if you don't have much. 3. Knowing this is mortality. I am grateful I know what this life is not about and what will not make me happy.
Nov. 24 1. I saw a huge rat at a restaurant in DC. I'm kind of grateful I saw a huge rat. 2. Blow up mattresses 3. Sherlock Holmes
1. My mom took me to see a fun movie and then to lunch.
2. Getting a bunch of homework done.
3. Being involved with planning in the Boys & Girls club.
1. Movies. They are fun.
2. Mandy. I know her from Maine and she reminded me of what a great experience that was.
3. Good fitting T-shirts.
1. Sis. Axley's talk on miracles. It made me stop and think about my life and the miracles I've had. Apparently you don't have to go to Harvard or have a perfect life to be good enough.
2. A good strengthening google chat conversation about Elder Busche's life.
3. I was able to sketch out some ideas for a documentary I want to make.
1. Ryan, my friend since the age of 4.
2. Saw two black bears in Shenandoah National Park.
3. An employee from the GAO sent me an email in response to our conversation saying that working at the GAO is boring and you don't actually do anything. You just write about what other people do. I would hate that.
1. Skype - I co-hosted my ward's Price is Right game show in Provo while in DC. Really funny.
2. The week is over, now I can sleep.
3. Jennica for making me laugh over a large intercom system while hosting the Price is Right.
1. Went to a calm social Mormon party in Alexandria. It was a good breather.
2. Sugar cookies with a big frosting 'S'.
3. Although I stayed up till 3am to finish a project I'm grateful I had something to do.
1. NPR, I visited them today. They're snobs but it was still cool to see what goes into it.
2. Walking in amazing weather.
3. Architecture that is classic, enduring, and solid.
2. Norman Rockwell paintings - specifically the 'Freedom of Speech' one - it was so great to look at them in person.
3. Sincere people.
1. Oil Paintings.
2. Free Museums in DC - they haven't privatized beauty.
3. Left over money on my Metro Card from last year.
1. Good examples.
2. My mom for driving me and friends to the hotel.
3. Although things are always changing, I am grateful that some things stay the same long enough to learn from them even if it takes a few years - Like Gettysburg.
1. Sleep, it saves me from throwing up while flying. I'd rather drive
2. My mom always having food for me. It means she loves me.
3. My mom getting a new house that's everything she wants and deserves.
1. Homework. I am grateful I have things to do. Much better than nothing.
2. Carl Bloch. I went to his exhibit tonight on campus. Amazing, and free. Used an IPad as a tour guide, way cool.
3. Microsoft Excel. Yup, that's right.
1. When my MPA program Team clicks well.
2. Music on my laptop.
3. My bed even though it sinks into the center of the earth.
2. Movies - to me they're art. We watched a clip from Schindler's List in Organizational Behavior today on the definition of power.
3. I am grateful that I can jump.
1. Good timing - had two friends walk into my study room who at first were a distraction but quickly became strengths.
2. Naps that aren't laziness but necessities
3. The well rounded people out there: "A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." --Robert A. Heinlein
2. My sister making me grilled cheese and tomato soup
3. People forgiving and forgetting
3.a. Friends who validate when you weren't looking for it.
In answer to the previous post's questions:
1. That picture was of me flipping off a lobster boat into the ocean off the coast of Maine.
2. Telephone Murder Charades is the funnest game in the world next to ga-ga ball (which is a form of dodge ball which neutralizes competition and aggression.) One person from one team has to act out a long elaborate way someone can die which the other team makes up. Then the next person has to watch the acting job and act it out for the next person and so on. So funny.
3. I am grateful for homeless people because they humble me. They make me realize a lot about this mortality. I don't believe it matters why they are begging. I beg all the time in my prayers for stuff I don't deserve.
I'm in Provo. I just came from the Black Hills of South Dakota. It was a wonderful time there and I'm grateful for it; but, what isn't there to be grateful for in my life? It seems like everything works for my good, or some body's good.
While in South Dakota I worked at Mount Rushmore as a Intern Park Ranger. And because I only earned $15 a day I got a second job in Keystone working at a fudge shop! Ha! Imagine that. This entire summer was a sacred enough experience that I probably won't talk about it with people. Sure, I'll tell them what I did and how great it was. But how can you talk about something you don't understand, or is so custom fitted that its explanation wouldn't fit any one else? Whatever this summer was I don't know if I'll ever get it back again. But that's ok, there'll be more of life's tender mercies and I don't believe life will now progress into a decrescendo. But it was an experience through and through and I couldn't have made it happen if I had a thousand years of planning. And I don't think I care one bit whether I deserved it, or whether it was prudent, or whether any goals were accomplished. I don't care what was accomplished; or, anything really - it felt good and right and sure enough it was good and right. I wasn't looking for much.
And here I am a year later in Provo. It seems a year ago I was heading out to Maine. I knew things were off then, but I didn't know how to work to fix them. Now a year has gone by and a lot has been fixed. . . I should have stepped out of the way earlier.
From what I've learned so far - I've got no plans, or as Abraham Lincoln said: My policy is that I have no policy. I am going to deal with my situations as I find them, with the relevant data I possess at that time. So, it will be 2 years of graduate work, and that will be fun.
Fun things I've Seen or Experienced OAR music Yankees Redsox Game at Fenway Juggler juggling 9 balls Did a polar bear jump - 3 times A professional Clown hose me down with CO2 Canoeing Jason Veritek hit a homerun over the green monster at Fenway Bonfire on a rocky beach with an orange moon rising out of the ocean
Things I've done Kept my standards Woken up every single morning at 6:30 and studied Made my bed military style with sheets folded at top every morning A lot of break dancing for the kids. Played a lot of Ga ga ball with the kids Given the kids man speaches and interviews every night Kept to myself to feel and learn
Lately I have. And when I am lucky I realize some things I don't like about myself. And in answer to this, I've felt the spirit of the strenuous age. A period in American history where the nature of accomplishments were different. A day wrapping up during Gordon B Hinckley's youth and a day of Teddy Roosevelt's creation. And on even better days I'm too engaged productively to think about it. (I don't think hearts are like cars. You can't fix a heart by troubleshooting it, and you can't improve an engine by using it.)
And so on reflection of the age, previous feelings, experiences, and pictures; and, after having read Mosiah 2:22 - And behold, all that he requires of you is to keep his commandments; and he has promised you that if ye would keep his commandments ye should prosper in the land; and he never doth vary from that which he hath said; therefore, if ye do keep his commandments he doth bless you and prosper you -have you ever felt like this:
or like this:
or better yet, in admiration of this man:
I know these two men are different but they both represent to me work of forward movement or momentum.
I think I can say right now that although I make bad decisions and do stupid things - even when fanatically trying not to - I am not done, I am not forever stuck with my weaknesses. And here's the important thing, I'm not moving on in the fallacy of the strenuous age. I am not, or hope I don't, move on the strength of my own back or will power. That just won't work, William Henley was wrong. I must move on as TR would hammer, but I must move on meekly, dependent, and confident. Confident solely for the reason that the tapestry of my life is being woven by someone who has my good and benefit in mind. An omniscient, loving God who is trying to make me happy and meet my needs. And I think in some twisted way the strenuous age was or is the product of Matthew 10:39.