Posted by: truculenterutpote | June 15, 2014

Father’s Day

When I was growing up my dad had a little bit of a bad rap. Not that he was a bad dad or anything, he just happened to be responsible for several of my least favorite things; he was the one who got out us out of bed in the morning, he was the one whose spankings hurt, he was the bogey man (“just wait until I tell your dad when he gets home”).

 
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that he was a bad dad, by any means. I loved my dad, and more importantly I never doubted he loved me. Some of my favorite childhood memories were out tossing a baseball/football with my dad, or those saturday afternoon sonic runs with just the two of us. Looking back I think it was far more a matter of me just taking him for granted.

 
Now I was young, and being homeschooled I was a pretty sheltered kid. I just assumed that my dad was doing what all dads did. Even then, I was pretty clueless as to how much my dad actually did. I got my first taste when I was 13 or so and my dad started traveling with his job. He did his best to stay close, but typically he was gone during the week, sometimes even the weekends. This left me to fill the role of, “man of the house”. For me that meant mowing the yard, fixing leaky toilets, and being woken up in the middle of the night occasionally to kill the rogue cockroach. Now, as difficult as this was, it barely touched the responsibilities my dad has carried for years.

 
My dad, first and foremost has always been an outstanding provider. He always worked to better himself for his families benefit. With five kids he decided to go back to school and get his bachelor’s degree, he went to school during the week and then worked a 40 hour weekend shift in an emergency in order to provide. When needed he worked a 8-5, monday-friday job, then took two part time jobs, one on week day evenings, and another on saturdays. He was willing to work around the clock in order to ensure that his family was taken care of.

 
In case you didn’t pick up on it in the last paragraph my dad is a pretty selfless person. I think the best example of this, for me anyways, was when I was trying to move from Texas to Pennsylvania. I had rebuilt a ‘72 Super Beetle was running several months behind schedule. I was engaged to be married, in Pennsylvania, in a couple months and desperately needed to be in Pennsylvania. When I finally decided try and move, even though the Beetle was really not ready, my dad decided to do more than simply support me. I was unable to fit everything I wanted to move up to Pennsylvania with me in the Beetle so my dad decided to drive a second vehicle to carry everything else. Now, the trip is a good 24 hour drive, and my dad had just returned from a family vacation, driving almost 12 hours. He didn’t hesitate, he jumped behind the wheel and gladly faced down another 48 hours of driving round trip.

 
From the start there were issues with the Beetle, and what should have been a two day trip ended up being three. Now, I am skimping on the gritty details, but I honestly don’t think my sanity could have survived the trip without my dad. Not only did he manage to get me down there, but he then turned around drove 24 hours straight to get back to Texas in time to resume work. He was willing to give up a week of vacation to spend 5 days of that in car helping me move halfway across the country. And the only reason I was in such a pickle is that I went against his advice in the first place.
That is the type of man that my father is. He is the type of man that I strive to be every single day of my life, and I have a feeling I will continue to strive for that goal the rest of my life.

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Posted by: truculenterutpote | April 23, 2014

Defending Noah Pt. 1

I was able to see the movie, Noah, last night. After I saw the preview for the first time I was slightly interested, after hearing very mixed reviews I had all but decided not to see it. However, my wife and in-laws were going to see it so I decided I would take it for what it is, a movie. I decided to go into it without any expectations, or at least as few expectations as possible. To simply put it I was blown away, the movie was incredibly well done. It had a great cast, stunning visuals, the soundtrack worked perfectly in tandem with story to evoke an emotional response. In terms of it being a movie, I thought it was spectacular.
 
However, in this day and age it’s basically impossible to make a movie around a biblical story and have it simply be viewed as a movie. I have heard lots of reviews bashing it because it wasn’t biblical, took many liberties, etc etc. So I decided to type down my perspective in an attempt to give the other side of the coin some light. I do plan on going fairly in-depth into the story and details about the movie, so if you are interested in seeing it and don’t want any spoilers, I’d suggest stopping.

I decided to break this down into two posts, this one will be to explain my perspective from which I experienced the movie. Since this movie is roughly based on a Biblical story this post will cover my views on the Bible. Controversial, I know. I see the Bible, specifically the Old Testament (since we are dealing with the book of Genesis), as a collection of stories that were passed down through the generations by word of mouth, until someone took the time to put them down onto something that would last longer. Now, I know certain people that believe if you deviate from the Bible, even by as much as a word or two, that somehow the Bible becomes just another work of fiction and essentially useless for any religious purpose. I don’t agree with that. Like I said, most if not all of the stories in the Old Testament were in all probability passed down as oral traditions before being put down on papyrus (or whatever other material they had handy). To believe that exact wording survived perfectly intact through all those retellings, that they were then quilled down with exact accuracy, that those documents were then sheltered from the ravages of time, found by the right people, translated perfectly, then that other people were able to adapt that same perfection into multiple translations seems like a long shot to me. That’s not even taking into account that what is and isn’t included in the Bible we know was voted on by a group of human beings.

All in all I see an incredible amount of human involvement to think the stories in the Bible don’t deviate from what actually happened in some little way. Now, if you do believe that way I don’t have anything against you. The God I believe in is big enough to make that happen. Personally though, I don’t feel that is how it happened. Personally, I believe that God decided to take certain stories, a.k.a events, and breathe into them His spirit; because of this it doesn’t matter if small details are changed or omitted, if a word is mistranslated or left out of a certain translation that there is something about these stories that are profoundly power. Powerful enough to speak to people wherever they may be in life. So just keep in mind that I am viewing the movie Noah from that perspective.

Posted by: truculenterutpote | February 1, 2014

Amazon, The Postal Service, and the employee

If you work at the United States Postal Service then you know how the big wigs (upper management) have been stressing that package delivery is the future for the Post Office. Due to this the Post Service has been trying to increase their relationship with Amazon, simply because of the massive amounts of packages that Amazon ships.. Now Amazon is a huge retailer, and because of this they ship through FedEx, UPS and the Postal Service. The United States Postal Service has decided that in order to set themselves apart from FedEx and UPS that they are going to deliver Amazon packages on Sundays, something that FedEx and UPS will not do.
Now on the surface this sounds like a great idea. On one side Amazon will be able to offer something that other retailers aren’t able to offer, and on the other side you have the United States Postal Service who will be increasing revenue, something that is badly needed for them. The hitch comes when you start sorting out how the United States Postal Service is going to accomplish this Sunday delivering.

Now, I am working as a CCA (City Carrier Assistant) in Central Pennsylvania, so I can only attest to how my office is going to accomplish this, but I would be willing to bet my reputation that how things at my office are being handled is pretty much par for the course for the rest of the Post Office. Now the majority of Letter Carriers are considered career, which, for the purpose of this conversation means that they cannot be forced to work Sundays. Which means the majority of the work force at the United States Postal Service is not available to help the Post Office accomplish their commitment to Amazon. Which is where I (and others in my position) come in.

Now over the past nine months I have been working Monday thru Saturday, starting work at 7:30 and working anywhere from 5:00 (If I am lucky) to the more typical 6:00 or 6:30 if not later. If you do the math you realize I am working between fifty-five and sixty-five hours a week, on average. Now the Postal Service is telling me that my position, which does not provide benefits, or job security (CCA’s are signed to one year contracts) will be required to work seven days a week. Now when I complained about this, and tried to explain that Sundays are the main chance I get to spend time with my wife I was basically told that the United States Postal Service had signed a contract with Amazon, which was increasing their revenue, so I was out of luck

Now, maybe some people like the idea of working seven days a week, sixty plus hours a week, but I am not overly fond of it. Nor do I think that most people would like the lengths that the United States Postal Service is going to in order to try and make another buck. Although, maybe you don’t care. Either way, I just thought you might want to know the full story.

Posted by: truculenterutpote | January 24, 2014

Presumption/Fact

I recently moved to Pennsylvania a little over a year ago. Previous to this I had lived in Texas my entire life. During my time in Pennsylvania I have learned several things that I doubt I would have ever learned if I had stayed in Texas for the duration of my days.

Presumption- Growing up in Texas I assumed that there was something magical about snow. A couple of somethings actually. The first thing was that, if you were lucky, you might get snow fall once a year. Secondly, I assumed that there was something that caused snow to immediately start melting the moment it made contact with the ground. Sometimes, if it snowed hard enough, and long enough, the snow would build up faster than it could melt and you might have snow on the ground, at least until it stopped snowing and physics was able to take over and melt all the snow.

Truth- If I had stayed in Texas I might have never realized that there is no limit to the amount of times it can snow in a winter, or that snow melting is actually dependent on the temperature, it has nothing to do with snow being in contact with the ground.

Presumption- I had also assumed that snow most resembled mud, just a little colder.

Fact- Snow can take many forms, but in it’s purest form it bears far more resemblance to sand than mud.

Presumption- In my experience snow falls, like most other things, straight down.

Fact- I am assuming thanks to its likeness to sand it can float it’s way to earth, or flat out blow around like sand.

Presumption- I remember Northerners mocking us Southerners over our winter driving.

Fact- Northerners are spoiled. Yes, it does snow far more in places up North than it does in the south, but this is offset by a couple of factors. The first one being it snows up North, it doesn’t ice like it tends to do down south. The second factor is that up North people are prepared for it, there are plows standing by to clear the roads then put salt down to prevent them from icing over.

Presumption- You can be a good winter driver.

Fact- When there is snow or ice on the ground your vehicle is in danger of losing traction. There is no amount of “talent” that offsets this fact. Yes, there are ways to regain control traction faster, but the bottom line is if it comes to that you have already lost traction, and therefor are not a very “talented” driver. The only thing you can do to “improve” your driving in wintry conditions is to slow down. This, however, does not make a better driver, it only means you have half a brain in your head.

Presumption- I assumed Blue Bell Ice Cream was common place across all the civilized world. I mean, what else makes a place civilized?

Fact- There is only a small portion of us humans who really know the truth, when it comes to ice cream, there is Blue Bell, and everything else.

Presumption- I thought the only income tax people had to pay was Federal.

Fact- There are some places in the world where Federal income tax is only the tip of the iceberg. Some places charge you state and local income taxes on top of sales tax and all the other ridiculous taxes you are expected to pay. I would suggest staying away from these places, it’s your money, keep it.

Presumption- Growing up I was always aware of a singular truth, Texas is the best place on earth. However, I also figured that most non-Texans were jealous of the fact that they lived somewhere that was not Texas

Fact- True, some people are jealous, and some try and pretend like they don’t know that Texas is the best. Yet, there are some, mostly those that have either visited or lived for a time in Texas, who wholly embrace Texas and all it’s splendor. Meeting one of these people always makes me day.

Presumption- Having spent 23 plus years in Texas, I had grown accustom to intersections consisting of two roads meeting at a 90 degree angle.

Fact- Especially here up North, this is not always the case. Sometimes, there will be 3 sometimes 4 or 5 roads will intersect at the some point, or at points too close to be separate intersections. Now, this might sound tricky, but trust me, as tricky as the theory might be, the real world application is much worse. See, just because a road enters an intersection does not mean this road continues on past the intersection, and if it does, there is no guarantee that the road will be traveling the same direction it was before it entered the intersection. Now, as tricky as figuring out which road you want to select from the plethora of options some intersections give you, that quandary pales in comparison to sorting out which traffic light you should be paying attention to. If this paragraph confused you, good luck navigating one of these intersections. I attempted to find an illustration to, well, illustrate this fact, but I don’t think modern geometry has created the shapes needed to properly represent what I am talking about.

Presumption- The further North you get, aka, the further away from Mexico you get, the worse the Mexican food gets.

Fact- yes, and the food decreases exponentially in relation to the miles you are away from Mexico. If you are fortunate enough to be in area of the country with good Mexican/Tex-Mex food, enjoy it. If you have never been in an area of the country with good Mexican/Tex-Mex, you should get in a car, drive to an area of the country where they have good Mexican/Tex-Mex and eat your fill…While you’re there it would be worth your while to see if the town you are eating in has Blue Bell Ice Cream, if this is the case you might as well start submitting your resume and looking at real estate, because you won’t want to leave.
These are just a couple of the nuggets of wisdom I have discovered from living in two parts of the country. If you have any I did not include, feel free to include them. Or, if you have only lived one place your life, and you have something you think might be a presumption but aren’t sure, feel free to post that as well, and I will see if I can debunk or confirm it for you.

Posted by: truculenterutpote | January 24, 2014

Possibilities.

I have started working on Morghan and I’s taxes for 2013. This has caused me to reflect on everything that has happened this past year, specifically our financial situation. Those of you who don’t know, Morghan made me blissfully happy and married me January 4th of last year. That night I received a phone call informing me that my seasonal work with Amazon had been terminated. Which meant we were married with me unemployed and no prospects of another job, with only an associates degree to my name. Morghan, who I am insanely grateful for not only as a wife and all that entails, but also for her work ethic, was working 3 part time jobs just to keep her own head above water. Between the two of us we had two car loans, five student, one medical, and three misc. loans and no insurance. Needless to say Morghan’s paychecks were not going to cover our financial obligations, let alone buy the necessities. We were incredible blessed by Jeff and Denise Wendle, who provided us a place to stay, for which we will always be grateful and never able to repay. But other than that it was not an ideal situation to start a marriage on.

 

Over the past year Morghan and I were amazingly able to keep up with our payments for all our obligations, as well as buy enough food to keep from starving and enough books to keep from going mad. Morghan earned a promotion, which came with a raise, more hours, and benefits. Although she continues to work two part time jobs on top of this, because, like I said, she is absolutely incredible. I was able to obtain a job with the United States Post Office that pays decently well and has the added bonus to have more than enough overtime. As of the end of this month we will have paid off our three misc. and the medical loan, while paying extra off on our vehicles, and taking on rent in the form of an apartment.

 

Now, believe it or not I’m not writing this note simply because I like the idea of the internet knowing Morghan and I’s financial situation. I am posting this as encouragement to others as to how quickly God can turn things around. And not simply turn around your situations, financial or otherwise, but give you peace even when the situations are less than ideal. Before getting hired on at the Postal Service I worked two part time jobs along with Morghan’s three trying to just keep our heads above water. Even with that, for several months our paychecks weren’t enough to cover our expenses. One would imagine that this would be stressful for anyone, especially a newly wed couple. Yet, and I believe Morghan would attest to this (she’ll be reading to approve this before I post, so if you are reading this, she attests) it never put more than a minimal strain on our marriage. 

 

So no matter the situation you are in, no matter how stressful it may seem, or actually be, God can turn it around. Now, it might not be how you envision, it may simply be God giving you peace, God miraculously taking care of things for you, or God allowing you the chance to work your ass off so you can dig yourself out of the whole.  Rest assured, He is God, so the possibilities are endless.

Posted by: truculenterutpote | February 28, 2013

Sequestration, My View.

The big news for American politics if the threat of sequester. Or the threat of the sequester. I actually have no idea how to use sequester properly in a sentence. Now a quick recap, just so everyone is on the same page. Everyone knows that America’s national debt is a big issue. Equally as obvious is the inability of the current American congress to pass much of anything, except the blame. So they sat down a while back, decided that they needed to cut spending, naturally the two sides couldn’t come to an agreement, so they passed a bill saying that if they hadn’t decided on how to reduce the deficit that there will be automatic cuts, or sequesters. The deadline is tomorrow (Friday) at midnight. Now both sides seem to be upset that these cuts are going to take place.

The whole situation reminds me of a scenario where Greg and Alan are sitting together, Greg tells Alan he needs to decide what to eat for lunch in ten minutes, and if he hasn’t done that, Alan should punch him. Greg can’t make up his mind, so Alan punches him. Greg then goes on to get pissed at Alan. Except Alan doesn’t really exist, and not only is our government talking to itself, it’s hurting itself as well.

Posted by: truculenterutpote | February 14, 2013

Republicans vs. Democrats

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If you are political in America today you basically have two options, Democrat, or Republican. If you are one of what I suspect to be a rapidly growing percentage of the population who, like me, are fed up with both parties, you are left out in the cold.

My issues with both these parties are many, and if I attempted to list them out it would make for one very long, particularly boring blog. So for the sake of brevity, I am going to use an example to illustrate how ridiculously the choice is.

If you pay attention to the news, you will have noticed a commotion around the idea of a deadline concerning looming tax cuts. A simple synopsis goes as follows; the United States of America is currently 16.48 trillion dollars, and counting, in debt. Someone in Washington finally realized there are American voters who cared about this fact, so it has become an issue for both parties. As a result of this there have been efforts by congress to fix this. However, because the Republican and Democratic parties cannot get along, nothing significant has been done. The last attempt was as equally unsuccessful as the previous ones, but in an effort to force some sort of compromise they enacted a deadline. If some sort of deal is not reached by March 1st, then cuts will be made automatically to the tune of 85 billion dollars. Now these cuts will affect both Democratic and Republican themed areas of government. The idea being that both sides would be motivated enough to actually come up with a solution

Well, their genius idea, much like many other ideas that have come up with, is not working. It appears, unless there is a big shift, that these automatic budget cuts will take effect. Both sides seem to agree that these cuts are not in the best interest of the nation. Which begs a couple questions, first one being, if they aren’t in the best interest of the nation, then why even put them on the table? I understand they were intended to be a failsafe, but I don’t think many people are surprised that they didn’t work. Secondly, is our government so bad at math that they think 85 billion in spending cuts will help?

Let me just throw out some more number for you, the National debt is 16.48 trillion, in the past four years our national debt has increased by roughly 6 trillion dollars, simply math tells you that our government is spending 1.25 trillion dollars more than it is taking in. Now both parties seem to agree that the automatic 85 billion dollar tax cuts are pretty severe, severe enough for them to at least publicly talk about working together.

Now by itself 85 billion is a huge number, one I have a hard time wrapping my mind around, but once it is put into context it loses some of its jaw dropping power. 85 billion is only 6.8 percent of the amount we have been increasing the national debt over the past four years.

That’s right, these seemingly worst case scenario tax cuts, wouldn’t even touch the national debt, it would barely even make a dent in terms of slowing the current increasing of the debt.

To me, this is a classic example of both political parties at their finest. They wait to tackle an issue until there are a significant percentage of voters yelling about it, and then they argue about the best way to address, ultimately failing to pass any meaningful legislation on the issue, both sides screaming and crying that the other big bad political party is preventing them from doing anything. Then you realize that even if one party had their way, it wouldn’t come close to addressing the problem in the first place.

Now, I don’t claim to have a perfect solution to the debt situation, nor do I understand the potential consequences if we don’t come up with a solution. All that I do know is that neither side is making a serious effort to address the problem.

The Democrats are saying we should increase taxes, which makes a little bit of sense, until you realize they only want to increase taxes on the rich. Republicans are saying that we should cut spending to programs such as food stamps, which again, at least makes sense on paper, until you realize they want lower taxes for a large percentage of tax payers. All the while they refuse to touch their prized programs, Democrats with spending on entitlement spending, and Republican on defense spending. And the most ludicrous thing of all, both parties have had control of the presidency, senate, and house for at least one year over the past 10, and both parties increased the national debt.

I am not here to discuss the validity of entitlement programs, higher or lower taxes, or defense spending’s, because on some level all those things have a place. What I am frustrated with is how the Government can claim to be attempting to fix something, throw out ideas that don’t make any realistic sense, and we as a country take it hook line and sinker.

Posted by: truculenterutpote | February 10, 2013

Tolerance, or intolerance?

If you have been following the news lately you know that there is a problem with this country. Some people might say that it’s because of our lack of gun control, some people would say it’s because the lack of a religious conviction or so on and so forth, but the bottom line is there is a lot of hate in this country. The level of hate in this country has reached a point where it seems like every day you hear about another person who walks into some business or place solely with the intent to kill people.

I was reading an article on CNN the other day about a man that walked into a Family Research Council building with the intent of killing as many people as possible. Thankfully the first person he tried to shoot had enough presence of mind to tackle the guy, and this gunman was subdued with only one person being injured. Through the course of him being interviewed and interrogated it has came out that this was not a spur of the moment decision, it is one that he had been considering for years. He purposefully targeted the Family Research Council, which is a Christian organization who focusses on family issues, anti-abortion, religious liberty issues, and views homosexuality as harmful. The man was evidently pro-gay rights, and had even volunteered his time at a pro-gay center. This individual told the judge that his intent behind his actions was designed to intimidate gay rights opponents.  

 The definition of tolerance is, “a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward those whose opinions, practices, race, religion, nationality, etc., differ from one’s own; freedom from bigotry.” We hear a lot about tolerance in this country. In theory it sounds like a very nice idea. Especially the last part, “freedom from bigotry,” I think we all could agree that our country would benefit greatly from freedom from bigotry.

The problem with tolerance in our country is how it is put into practice. Generally, when you hear someone talking about tolerance, they are referencing how someone from the right, generally someone of traditional religious views, need to be more tolerable of those who lead lifestyles that differ from moral standards found in traditional religion. The problem is; are we tolerant of those that we find intolerant?

The purpose of this post is not to argue for or against gay rights, for or against Christianity, or for or against republican or democrat, this issue is far bigger than those issues.

The definition of bigotry is, “stubborn and complete intolerance of any creed, belief, or opinion that differs from one’s own.” I find it telling how the definition of tolerance and bigotry are linked. You see, while tolerance fights bigotry, intolerance breeds it.

Now, the current political climate would have you believe that the real danger is the old fashioned, right winged, religious nuts, being intolerant of things such as gay rights, minorities, abortion, and so on. Now don’t get me wrong, I believe that this is a real danger. Like I said, intolerance breeds bigotry.

The danger is there seems to be a brand of intolerance that we find acceptable. If you are being intolerant of those that are intolerant of others it somehow becomes more palatable; that is to say, as long as you are using intolerance to somehow coerce tolerance from a group of otherwise intolerant people, then it is justified. The problem, as I have stated before, is that intolerance breeds bigotry, regardless of your motivations.

While I completely agree that being made to feel inferior, or somehow less human or less worthy of living, simply because you choose to live your life different from others is disgusting, stomach churning, and downright unacceptable. Just as I firmly believe that being gunned down like an animal simply because you choose not to accept those people’s choices is just as disgusting, stomach churning, and downright unacceptable as the former.

The fact that someone disagrees with you, does not give you the right to value their life any less than your own. I understand that when you are talking about life choices, big choices, choices that lay out who are as a person, choices that are rooted deep in our souls, that things get touchy. When someone disagrees with you on issues of such magnitude, especially when they do so in a hateful manner, it hurts in a way that reaches to the very center of who we are as a humans. It is only natural to react in an aggressive manner when the very core of who we are as human beings are under attack. The problem is that when we give into that urge, we only create a cycle of intolerance that does nothing but breed more and more bigotry.

I am not attempting to pardon the actions of any group or individuals, nor am I trying to make any sort of political statement. I am simply trying to put a stop to the bigotry and hate that is threatening to tear our country apart.

Too often in today’s cultural people feel that what they do has no effect in the bigger schemes of things; I am urging everyone who reads this to resist that mindset. This is an issue that we can control. You see, this is an issue that cannot be fixed by governmental legislation, because this is an issue that has its roots inside the hearts of people. We are the only ones who can change this. We have the power to stop this trend of bigotry and violence. All we have to do is choose to bite back our hate, to stop simply preaching tolerance, and start acting it out.

I understand that for some this means choking back a lifetime of hate and bigotry that has been thrown your way. I cannot pretend to know what that feels like, and I am certain that my apology carries very little weight, but I am sorry for what you have gone through and I wish that this world was different. I also wish that you would join me in an effort to bring about this change, save lives, and maybe, just maybe, we can end up changing lives as well.

Posted by: truculenterutpote | February 7, 2013

Reintroduction

I started this post with a very detailed introduction of myself. Truth be told, that was the reason I started this blog, I had a need to express myself as I really was, not how I viewed others as viewing me. Anyways, I figured my 2013 reboot of this blog (feel free to read yesterdays post for the explanation) probably needed to start with me reintroducing myself.

Reading back over that it occurs to me how much I have changed in the past 3 years. This is actually encouraging as often times I feel like I have changed very little lately. One of the ways I have changed, at least in relation to this blog, I do not feel that I have to spill my guts out on the web in the hope that someone might hear me. This is probably due to the fact that I am married to the most absolutely amazing woman in the history of womankind.

Morghan and I

Told you.

To official begin my reintroduction, my name is Ben, I am 23, incredibly happily married. In order for me to be able to marry this amazing woman who is now my wife. I had to move from Texas, where I was born and raised, to Pennsylvania, where evidently it snows everyday during the winter. I actually do not mind the change much at all, other than the fact I do not have access to Blue Bell ice cream and Ranch Style Beans. I am attempting to finish out my bachelors degree at an online school, which is proving to be a bigger challenge than I had expected.  I am currently working at a clothing retail store, although I am hoping to either subsidize that income with another job or replace it. I am a christian, and I am a conservative, although I want very little to do with the Republican party anymore. And…yeah…this blog will hopefully be more interesting than I am sure my life sounds.

Although after that last paragraph I’m sure I could blog about the mating habits of three-toed sloths and be more exciting. Like I said before, I don’t feel a big need prostrate myself before the faceless masses of the internet. I am a fairly simple person, with an amazing, yet simple life. I invite you to follow this blog as I detail my thoughts on whatever pops into my head. I am making it my new years resolution to update this thing regularly, and hopefully I will be able to do so with posts that are interesting, engaging, and maybe even thought provoking.

Posted by: truculenterutpote | February 7, 2013

2013 Reboot/Mission Statement/

 

If the title doesn’t tell you everything you need to know about this post, then hopefully the next couple of paragraphs will.

 

I want to apologize for my absence the past couple months. For a while I was working 60 hours a week, then I was getting married, then, I was married.

 

I still am married…just to clarify.

 

If you’ve paid any attention at all to this blog over the last couple years or so you know that I don’t regularly post on here. All last year I only managed 13 posts. With the New Year I have been thinking about what I want out of this life. That thought process has led to quite a bit of conclusions and answers to that question, but the general, broad sweeping one is that I want to be more disciplined. I tend to procrastinate and put things off until the last minute. Honestly, this approach has served me fairly well up until this point, but I have never been very comfortable with it and would like to see it changed. One of the ways I plan to work on and attempt to improve myself in this area is this blog.

 

I started this blog in December of 2009, over 3 years ago. I started it for a bunch of reasons, mostly just as a way to get things out of my head. What it has lacked is a point. I’ve just kind of done whatever on here, whenever I’ve felt like it. Not that it has been a bad thing; this is just a blog, not exactly life and death. Still, I think it is time for a reboot.

 

I’ve decided to approach this blog a little bit like a business, and any business needs a solid mission statement. Since I really don’t have a solid mission statement, I’m going to throw this one out there. I want this blog to be an exchange of ideas, a place where people can challenge each other, listen to the other side of the argument, and maybe even learn something. I realize that the ideas I just illustrated are a little hard for one person with a virtually non-existent blog to accomplish. Still, I figure I might as well try. Eventually I would like this idea to move far beyond this blog, but for right now I’m just focusing on giving this blog routine attention.

 

That brings me to my plan. I intend to increase my posts from every month or so, to around five a week. Yeah, a big jump; honestly, the idea scares me a little bit, which is the biggest reason I feel like it is a good idea. If you intend to follow me on this experiment, you’ll have to stick with me, I’m sure starting off I will have very few quality posts. The idea is that if I force myself to update this blog routinely, I’ll get better at it. Granted that might not happen, but I don’t think I have much to lose.

 

My intent is for this blog to address social issues. The reason for this being I believe there is plenty wrong with this world, more specifically I believe there is plenty wrong with our country. Yes, I do believe that our government is fairly whooper-jawed, but I also believe that our government is simply an extension of our society, so our government being ineffective reflects directly back to our society. So when I say I will be addressing social issues, that encompasses quite a large spectrum. Politics, religion, personal habits and thought processes, etc, etc. Basically, nothing is off limits.

 

If you’ve read my blog before you might think that this isn’t a big change, it’s not. What I intend to be a far more drastic change is how I approach the issues. In the past I have tended to rant and rave on various subjects, which I think is borderline pointless. Going forward I would like to outline how and why I believe or think certain ways. I would like to do this in a respectful enough of a manner that people of opposing viewpoints will be comfortable reading, then responding. I think our country is far too predictable, we stay very much in our comfort zones, Republicans watch Fox News, and Democrats watch CNN. I would like to attempt to change that. I would challenge anyone reading this blog to do me a favor, don’t be afraid to question your opinions. Don’t be afraid to listen to other side. There are basically only two things that can happen. One, you’ll listen and realize you still agree with your original belief, except chances are you will now be more comfortable with it, and hopefully you will understand how the opposing side thinks as well. Or two, you’ll listen and realize you agree with the other side after all and switch your belief. Neither of those sounds all that bad

 

I do realize that change can be intimidating at times, trust me, I am aware of that. But things change whether we like it and are comfortable with it or not. We might as well go along with things voluntarily.

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