Sunday, May 25, 2008

Biggest Blockbuster Disappointment Ever!

I should have known. When I first heard that they were making a new Indiana Jones movie, I should have known that it would never measure up to the originals. But somehow I hoped that maybe this time George Lucas would hit a grand slam after loading the bases with the first three films. We got tickets for the 10:30 showing and headed into downtown Silver Spring for some fine adventure cinema. The verdict: this movie sucked. I started dozing off after about 20-25 minutes. at the 40 minute mark I gave in and laid down on the open seats next to me. Luckily this theater is fairly new and you can put the arm rests up... I don't want to spoil the movie for anyone-- and really, I can't, on account of how I slept through until the credits-- but maybe by reading this "review" your expectations will be lowered and you'll have a better experience than I did. All in all I give the movie a C+ (that's generous, mind you). However, I give the nap I took an A-. I was exhausted from a long week of making ridiculous money... Highlights from the evening come mostly from our trip to the International House of Pancakes after the nap that I paid $10.25 to take. Several times during the movie/napping I remember having the thought, "freak, turn it down!" If you're considering seeing this movie, I would recommend you stay in and maybe pop in an episode of Lost or two... or seven.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Dropping in on honest Abe

So guess what? My car got towed AGAIN! I couldn't believe it. In the end I got it back for free and everything was ok, but man... I really dislike those tow truck folk and their ridiculous policies.

Today we drove downtown to DC and went to a few of the sights. We walked by the Washington monument (which is bigger than you might think), the WWII monument and stopped by the Lincoln Memorial. I was really impressed with the Lincoln Memorial. On Lincoln's right the Gettysburg address is carved in the wall. To his left is his inaugural speech from his second term. I was really impressed with the inaugural speech-- it quotes the Bible several times and makes several references to God. Standing in the memorial I had a few minutes to think about the speech and about how lucky we are to live in this free country. It was great to have those patriotic feelings stirred up again. I can't wait for the fourth of July! What better place could you be in for the celebration of our freedom than the capitol? America rocks. We really do live in the greatest country in the world.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Tow Truck Drivers = Servants of Satan

Tow truck drivers could be the 5th most horrible people in the history of the world behind Stalin, Bin Laden, Percy from the Green Mile and Johnny from the Cobra Kai dojo... So today I woke up and promptly told Cody about the weird dream I had where I was in a strange, yet luxurious bathroom. All of a sudden a girl I once took out and her brothers and sisters (I don't even know if she has any in reality) came in and started asking me what kind of shampoo I use. In the dream it made total sense and was not strange at all, it's only when I write that down that I realize how strange that sounds. But I digress... So I had a good shower, shaved, got dressed and was all set to go visit the Elwell family and see if they had any referrals they could pass on to me. I walked out to the parking lot only to find that my car was gone. At this point I figured that one of 3 things had happened: 1) I had been towed. 2) My car was stolen. Or 3) One of my prankster roommates was having some fun at my expense... It turns out the car was towed because my car doesn't have license plates on it and the trip permit is expired. $130 dollars later I got my car back from Henry's towing. This was the second time in as many months that my car has been towed. The first time I was towed I was so mad that I went to the bank and got $121.00 in quarters, nickels and dimes to pay the fee. At the last minute I wussed out and just paid with a credit card. I briefly considered paying in change this time, but decided against it. But hey, on the bright side, we're going to start working out tomorrow morning- I've got to get in shape before the cruise in November.

Also, FYI, I use Pantene Pro-V ... I use Titleist Pro-V1 golf balls, too. Weird.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

See the USA in a Chevrolet... Or Honda... Whatever.

After two and a half days, 2,065 miles, and about 60 gallons of gas, I made it! We set off from Ogden after a few days of training and hit the open road. Driving across the country let me see states that I had absolutely zero desire to see. Let's review the drive state by state...

Utah-- (Thursday 4:00 pm)

We left Ogden and made our way up I-80 to our friendly neighbor to the east, Wyoming.

Highlights- 1) Henefer.

Wyoming-- (Thursday night)

Highlights- 1) Getting 40 mpg until Evanston 2) Stopping in Laramie to get gas, and seeing a guy in his 60's selling switchblades, butterfly knives and brass knuckles in the gas station. 3) Sleeping in the Cheyenne Motel- this place was so disgusting that I slept on top of the blankets until about 4 AM when I woke up freezing and got under the top blanket. 4) Successfully leaving the state WITHOUT contracting some sort of disease.

In Wyoming I remembered a quote by Lavell Edwards, "I'd rather lose and live in Provo than win and live in Laramie." I agree...

Nebraska-- (Friday morning/early afternoon)

Nebraska was a pleasant surprise. Once we passed through the western part of the state, the landscape went from brown to greenish brown. I liked Omaha.

Highlights- 1) Kimberly the Assistant Manager KFC who laughed hysterically at everything we said. Kimberly also spoke Spanish surprisingly well.

Iowa-- (Friday evening)

Iowa was everything you'd expect it to be- rolling hills, farms, and country folk.

Highlights- 1) Getting out at the Kum and Go gas station in Boonesville and having it smell EXACTLY like Grandpa Salmon. 2) Briefly considering buying a Kum and Go gas station t-shirt, but ultimately deciding against it. 3)Getting a mediocre beef brisket at a BBQ place in Des Moines. 4) One of the guys in our little caravan getting lost, despite the fact that he had a GPS system in his car. 5) Cody getting upset about #4.

Illinois-- (Friday night/ Saturday morning)

Well, after having slept in the Cheyenne roach motel, we were all a little hesitant to stay in another cheap hotel after our Wyoming experience. So we roll into Joliet, a Chicago suburb, at around 1:00 am central time, find the local church building, pull out our blankets and pillows, and curled up under the stars and the stake center's satellite dish for a good 5 hours' rest. We got up around 6 and headed out.

Highlights- 1) Feeling safer sleeping on cement outside the church than I did in a motel room in Wyoming. 2) Delicious french toast sticks from BK.

Indiana-- (Saturday morning)

So Indiana was SWEET! I would totally live there.

Highlights- 1) The whole drive 2) Driving through South Bend, where Notre Dame is located.

Ohio-- (Saturday afternoon)

I had been in Ohio only once before, on a church history trip. This time was almost as good.

Highlights- 1) Driving by Bowling Green and reminiscing about my days studying abroad in St. Petersburg with the kids from Bowling Green. I wonder how they are doing...

Pennsylvania-- (Saturday afternoon)

Pennsylvania was nice, it was good to see some green. I'm surprised at how lush it is in the suburbs of these big, metropolitan cities.

Lowlights- 1) Paying $14.75 to the toll booth lady because I didn't get a ticket at a previous booth. This kinda left a bitter taste in my mouth... PA can secede from the union for all I care...

Maryland-- (Saturday afternoon)

So we finally made it to Silver Spring at 5:55 pm, which was great because the office was closing at 6:00, and we had to get there to give them our deposit. phew!

Highlights- 1) Remembering that people out here don't need to use their turn signals when changing lanes-- Yeah, apparently you just get over if you want to... It's wild.

That's it for now. Check back for updates!