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Showing posts from September, 2008

Can't We All Just Get Along?

I appreciated this article I saw on the Deseret News website. It was written by a reporter for the Chicago Tribune, and is about her family's experience and disagreements over religion. Both sides of my family consist of those who are LDS, and those who are not, and at times there has been tension as a result of different beliefs and value systems. Like the article points out, it does come down to individual choice, and we can either choose to be divided, or we can appreciate everyone's efforts and be united. That doesn't mean we need to agree with each other all the time, but that we can still be respectful and loving towards each other. A link to the article can be found at http://mormontimes.com/mormon_voices/mormon_experience/?id=3731 You can also check out the full text of the article at http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/chi-mormon-jewssep21,0,1284438.story

Oktoberfest

Had a great time at the Oktoberfest celebration at Snowbird this past weekend. It was indeed a celebration of all things German (at least as American's envision it). We took a tram ride to the top of the mountain, and had breathtaking views over to Park City. We also enjoyed bratwurst, sauerkraut, and apple strudel. And there was plenty of German polka music. It was a truly wonderful time. I was reminded again how much I enjoy all of that, and how much I enjoy the German language. I do have some German ancestry. I also have some Welsh ancestry. I'm sure both of those account for my love of singing and sing-alongs. And I lived in Iowa, which explains my love of bratwurst. There were of course lots of references to Austria, and the "Sound of Music", and all the bands wore leiderhosen. Bratwurst and a "Valderee, Valderah" sing-along - Really, it doesn't get any better than that!

Butch

Sadness in Mudville this weekend. Butch Cassidy (a.k.a Henry Gondorf, Fast Eddie Felson, Cool Hand Luke, Doc Hudson, etc.) is gone. 'Nuff said. R.I.P.

Joy in Mudville - The Sequel

My boys in blue began this morning with a magic number of "1" - meaning only one game needed, to clinch the national League West division. Thanks to the late season slide by the Arizona Diamondbacks, and their nasty loss to St. Louis this afternoon, the Bums have now clinched their first division title in 4 years. God bless Manny Ramirez!

Gift of Music

I was able to attend the "O.C. Tanner Gift of Music" concert this weekend. It was held at the Conference Center and featured the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Utah Symphony, Maestro Erich Kunzel, Denyce Graves, and Brian Stokes Mitchell. Only one word to say - FABULOUS! it was just what a girl wants to hear - old love songs and show tunes from the 30's, 40's and 50's. The music of the Gershiwins, Cole Porter, Rodgers, Hammerstein, Jerome Kern, etc. There were also classic patriotic tunes, and an armed forces salute that left me all choked up, especially after seeing the active-duty Marine standing at attention in his dress uniform for the Marine service anthem. Hoo-Rah. Brian Stokes Mitchell called it "Heaven on a Stick", and it truly was. Really, I would go just about anywhere to see any of those artists perform, and when I get to heaven, they all better be there too.

Apples to Apples

So I was having a conversation with a friend last night, who really does not enjoy country music. I of course was rhapsodizing about it and how great country music is. The conversation then turned to Opera, of which she is a big fan. I've never been able to really gain an appreciation for opera. I can appreciate the music and the skill involved, but that's about it. So I proceeded to mention how opera is all about infidelity, unrequited love, loose women, suicide and drinking. To which she replied "sounds like a country song." I had to chuckle, because she was right. It's all the same subject matter, just a different delivery method. Other than perhaps targeting different audiences, it's really comparing apples to apples. Both take a certain skill level and both dwell on the same (not necessarily uplifting) themes. "You say po-tay-to and I say po-tah-to".

Musings

1. Driving in my car today and listening to the classic country station, I first heard "Stand By Your Man", by Tammy Wynette. That was followed by "The Grand Tour" by George Jones. Is it only me that noticed that the station played both members of the Classic Country "IT" Couple one right after the other? (Answer: Probably So) 2. News of the Weird: An artist from Ottumwa has created a reproduction of the Mona Lisa entirely from Sticky Notes. I guess every artist has to have their medium, but Sticky Notes? 3. A couple of athletes have won multiple gold medals and set world records at the Paralympics. Why is it that once the regular Olympics are over, no one seems to pay attention to the Paralympics? It seems to me that the athletic feats in those games are even more incredible, considering that they're accomplished by people missing various limbs and/or senses. Somehow they seem more able-bodied than us so-called "normal" folks. 4. have

Apples and Oranges

I got to attend a performance of Beethoven's 9th Symphony by the Utah Symphony the other night. I'd never seen it performed before. It was fantastic. And when the chorus comes in, it's just breathtaking. I don't really know all that much about classical music. There are pieces and composers I know that I like, but I couldn't really expound on them or anything. I've always enjoyed Mozart, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, and a few others. And I couldn't really say I have a favorite. As I was thinking about Beethoven and Mozart, though, it got me to thinking about their different styles. For me, comparing them is like comparing Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly. Each has a unique style, but it's like comparing apples to oranges. One is more light and elegant, and the other is more passionate and powerful. But both are sublime.

Joy in Mudville

There's joy in Mudville this week. Thanks to the addition of key players like future Hall-of-Famer's Greg Maddux, and Manny Ramirez, my beloved Bums are over .500 for the first time this season and are 3 1/2 games up over the Diamondbacks. Manny is on a tear, and if all holds together, the Dodgers will win the National League West.

Miscellaneous Stuff

Thursday: Attend my soon-to be 4 year old nephew's t-ball game. I loved it - everyone gets a chance to hit and a chance to field, and then you get treats. I'm thinking of starting an adult league. :) Friday - AM: Became an Aunt for the 13th time. I love being an aunt and sure do love all of those kids. Friday - PM: Went to the Utah State Fair and Rodeo with some friends. Filled up on fair food (love those churros), and enjoyed the rodeo. No carny rides, thank you very much. The thought of portable roller coasters, etc., somehow does not appeal, especially when managed by the scary carny people. Saturday: Went fishing on for the first time in probably 20 years. Went with a group of friends from my ward to a place called Trial Lake, above Kamas, Utah, in the Unita Mountains (by the way, the Uinta Mountain Range is one of the very few that run east/west, instead of north/south). It was a great time, but the place lived up to it's name - among seven of us we caug

Chronic Conditions

Something that people may not know about me is that over the last several years, I have dealt with some chronic health issues. In addition to having seasonal allergies and having had sinus surgery for that, I also have something called Meniere's Disease. It's a chronic disease of the inner ear that causes dizziness, ringing in the ears, and symptoms of vertigo. For some people the symptoms can be quite debilitating. There is no known cause and no known cure. I try to control the symptoms of it through a low-salt diet and taking a water pill daily. Yesterday I was told by the doctor that I probably have a condition known as Interstitial Cystitis. It's a condition that causes bladder pain and tenderness, and overly-frequent urination. Again, there is known cause, and no known cure. As with Meniere's, you try to control the symptoms through diet and medication. Not sure what impact this will have yet, although those who know me know I am already dealing with the challeng

One Hundred Forty Million and Counting

The church announced last week that over 140 million copies of "The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ" have now been distributed around the world. This has been done by over 1 million missionaries and members of the church, since the church was first organized in 1830. The "Book of Mormon" is also now available in 107 languages. So goes the effort to spread the message of Jesus Christ to the corners of the earth, and to see that every one can receive the gospel message in their own language. As stated in the introduction, "We invite all men everywhere to read the Book of Mormon, to ponder in their hearts the message it contains, and then to ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ if the book is true. Those who pursue this course and ask in faith will gain a testimony of its truth and divinity by the power of the Holy Ghost. (See Moroni 10: 3-5.) Those who gain this divine witness from the Holy Spirit will also come to know by the

Not to be outdone - Tracie's Blind Date Story

My friend Inge wrote about one of her blind date stories, and since I didn't want to be outdone, I figured I would join the party. Usually, I break these stories out at parties anyway. By way of a disclaimer, this was several years ago, I am still alive, and I never heard from the guy again. Here goes...I used to work the 1:30-10PM shift. One afternoon a co-worker asked me if I would be willing to go out on a blind date with a friend of her husband's. The exact scenario was something along the lines of "he's really nice, he's been staying with us, we're sick of him, it's our anniversary, we want to go out, please take him off our hands...", to which I finally relented (mistake #1). I figured she was a church member, he was a returned missionary, and she wouldn't set me up with a creep (mistake #2). So we make arrangements for him to call me when I get home (mistake #3 - he has my number) and then to meet at my apartment (mistake #4 - he kn