Rockpocalypse

In the shower I came up with this idea. Essentially you take the top 64 most played bands from your itunes account and place them in an NCAA basketball tournament style bracket. The idea is then to go through each matchup with the thought that one of these bands will be eliminated from the earth forever and therefore you must pick the one whose music is more essential to the survival of the planet until there is a final winner. This could also be played of course with groups of people. Say 4 different people each choosing 16 bands and they are placed into the same bracket then each match-up is voted upon until the final winner of the Rockpocalypse comes forth. We already know that Third eye blind would make it pretty deep into any bracket made by Dan Jennejohn, that U2 would likely win an Eliason bracket and that the only band in Howard’s bracket would be Jethro Tull. But what else could we learn?

Also I got a nursing job and a nursing license. I am officially a male nurse. Some dreams do come true.

Exit Through the Gift Shop

Marci and I just watched one of the most amazing documentaries I have ever seen. It is called “Exit through the Gift Shop” and it is streaming on Netflix.

The documentary is about graffiti artists and a filmmaker who follows them. That is as much as I’ll say because I don’t want to give away anything, but this documentary was fascinating and really funny. It also makes you think because the whole story says a lot about art and fame and passion. About halfway through the movie, Marci and I had to start pausing it so we could comment to each other about what we just saw. The story is amazing. It’s just a great great movie.
This brings to mind another documentary that I saw called “Bigger, Faster, Stronger” that is about steroids . (I think I already made a post about that movie too and if you haven’t seen it you must.) Anyway, I thought it was funny that the two best documentaries that I have seen are about things that don’t really interest me. I don’t really care about steroids or graffiti. Yet somehow these documentaries totally wrapped me up in these subjects and made me care about them. It reminds me of something I once heard Jean Siskel say. He said that he doesn’t like it when people say they don’t like movies about boxing. What those people mean is they don’t like BAD movies about boxing. His point was that the topic doesn’t make the movie, the story does, and that people should be open to watching a movie about anything as long as it is a good movie. I agree.
I also think these two documentaries are interesting for another reason. They were both the projects of guys who had never made a movie before. They were just guys with cameras and a lot of passion for something. Eventually that passion lead them to create something amazing. More than anything, these documentaries are evidence that if you are passionate about what you do, opportunities will follow.

Welcome to Provo, California

Well, gentlemen, let me give you a bit of an update on Provo and on my life. Law school is going well. It’s definitely tough, but it’s good at the same time. (The toughest part is not the coursework–it’s the amount of hiding the ball that professors in higher education do.) Anyway, I’ve opted to spend my summer abroad this year–half of the time I’ll be in Uganda working for an organization that works with the government to promote property rights of AIDS orphans/widows. The other half I’ll be researching at Oxford for a professor there, which should be really cool.

As part of my trip to Africa this summer, I have joined a group of students who raise money for students doing externships. Our task is to go out to Utah Valley businesses and receive gifts/donations that we can auction off to the law school/alumni community and raise money. I thought I’d share an experience that I had while gathering some of these donations.

This Saturday, I was meeting up with the other law student who I work with (we have been tasked with the “date” route). We had gone to a lot of places in Provo already, but we hadn’t yet gone to the Riverwoods. While wandering around this mall (which has changed quite a bit), I stumbled upon this sign:

Now, in this moment, my curiosity was piqued. I had a flashback of Howard dancing around the kitchen of the house, “The mountain is high, the valley is low” in a midriff shirt that said “ProCal” on it. I laughed, and I thought: we gotta check this place out.

So, we rounded a corner, and there it was, looming before me like the Argonaths in front of Frodo on the Anduin. Huge, this building is–I might even say gargantuan. The Provo Beach Resort seemed to beckon to us, and all of a sudden, I thought: I need some board shorts!

When we got inside, we found all kinds of fun–a bowling alley, a simulated golf-course, a shark tank, etc. But the best part was this:

It’s called a “Flowrider”, and yes, it is an indoor surfing machine. That’s right. Surfing, right here in Provo, California. It was awesome. But I think the best part was as we were on our way out, and I noticed a sign that seemed to indicate the sale of merchandise. The name of the store was:

That’s right, guys–this was a clever play on two cultural phenomenons existent here in ProCal–missionaries and surfing. I walked in and was blown away–hundreds of board shorts, Roxy sweatshirts, and O’Neill t-shirts. “In God’s Hands” was playing on the plasma tv in the corner. Amazing. I was pretty certain I had reached Nirvana.

I guess that I thought the surfing craze was a fad that died out after we graduated from high school. But maybe it’s not, maybe it’s not. I just know that the mission of Called to Surf is to bring the coast to all peoples, everywhere. Pretty tubular.

This one’s for Howard

This is by a Dutch band from the 70’s called Focus. The song is called the House of the King.

If you like Jethro Tull, then you’ll like this business as well. It’s the opening to this tv show called Saxondale that I sorta like.

Here’s another Focus tune that is pretty rad that is the ending credits to the same show. Hocus Pocus

Yes, that is Mormon Gladys Knight introducing that band. The song is usually about 6 minutes long, but they’re playing it way fast here. Fyi, it has some sweet yodeling mixed with face melting guitar.