Monday, February 28, 2011

I Shouldn't Have

So this weekend, I went home to go to the Rooney and Eisley concert. THEY WERE AMAZING!

So glad I went. But while I was home, I was flipping through the channels and was magnetized to watch Richie Rich. Classic. While watching Richie Rich, a commercial came on. You know which one I am talking about. It starts off with the sounds of Sarah Mclachlan's soprano voice doing her thing while short clips of abused dogs are shown on the screen. I am usually not a sucker for this, but it pulled me in. I wanted to donate every dollar I own to give to those poor dying dogs. Instead, I googled "Humane Societies in Logan, Utah." I was taken to the Cache Valley Humane Society website and was on there for at least two hours. Supposedly it's against my housing contract to own a dog, but it never stopped some of my friends! I am 92% sure that I will own a dog by the end of the week.

How can you resist this?
or this?
or him?
or what about cute, little Toby?

When I see these pictures, I just see "Ryan, buy me! Take me home! We will be the best of friends!"

I want to go in to the Humane Society this week, but I know that I will come out with a new best friend. If I don't adopt one soon, I'll at least volunteer or something. I have now added "Adopt a Pet from a Humane Society" to my Bucket List.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Oh Hey!

I didn't see you there.

So lately I have been completely busy with school, work, and elections that I haven't had much time to blog. I haven't even hung out with girl as much as I would like.

I have had this thought on my mind for qutie some time so . . Well here it goes,

So when I got back from China, I didn't know where I was going to work in Logan. Jobs are extremely difficult to come by and I definitely needed some income. I began networking with friends and relatives and they didn't hear a thing. Einsteins crossed my mind but I just laughed it off. I had worked there for over 4 years, there is no way I would ever go back. Especially the one in Logan. I mean, I worked my ass off when I worked there. Everyone in the Einsteins world knew me. I was the youngest shift manager in the state of Utah and it definitely showed why. I worked at various stores helping out when needed, I trained new employees who were years older than me, I guess I was a big deal. (I still am a big deal in case you forgot)A mini Einsteins celeb if you will. So the thought of coming back to Einsteins was kind of nauseating and degrading to my ego. But, after a couple days of not hearing a thing, I did it. I called my scary boss (who hated me during my freshman year because I always asked for holidays off to go home) and asked her for my job back. Without hesitating, she put me on the next schedule. I told her to work me 15-20 hours a week because I really want to focus on school this semester. I looked at the schedule, and I was at 32. . . . uhhh . . . thanks? Well my first day, I was somewhat hesitant and a little nervous to come in to a new crew who had worked with each other for a while. I was nice and outgoing and asked questions about everyone who was there. I'll keep names out, but there are some interesting people that work there. You have: 1. The weed smoker who loves talking about how dank his weed is these days. 2. The nymphomaniac who is recently engaged and loves talking about her sex life even when you tell her it makes you feel a little uncomfortable. 3. The flaming gay kid who loves talking about his past relationships and why all men are assholes. 4. The overweight gal who talks about why she will never get married and why she resorts to eating. 5. The red-neck who just graduated high school and claims he will get married to his high school sweet heart and not just because she's pregnant, but because he loves her. 6. The high school cheerleader who asked me why people think President Obama is black. "cuz he's not."

But there has been one girl who has really humbled me in more ways than she even knows. I have never told her how much her story has effected me but it really is something. .

Let's say her name is . . . Taylor(I love that name) Well you see, Taylor is the typical sweet girl who doesn't have much to say. She works really hard, she does tasks when you ask her and she doesn't talk back or ask why. She listens to my complaining when I tell her how much I hate customers sometimes and how I hate working for a corporate restaurant and how the girl I like can't hang out when I want her to and blah blah blah. She listens, gives advice, smiles, and acts interested. You can tell just from talking to her that she has one of the biggest hearts you will ever know. Well it hit me last time I worked with her, that I don't know a single thing about her. I mean I know she's from Arizona and moved to Utah to be with her mom and she doesn't have enough money to go to school, but that is all superficial stuff. I wanted to know Taylor and learn things about her that no one else knows. She usually works until 3 and I work until 5 so we are always working together. I made it my weekly goal to get to know Taylor and find out what makes her tick.

Well you see, Taylor is like an onion and the more I work with her, the more layers I cut into. She began telling me how she has had 4 of her best friends commit suicide and how she's scared of getting attached to people because they all leave her one way or another. She then told me of her abusive relationship with her father and how he used to beat her until she had to get medical attention. She really did love Pheonix, but she couldn't handle it any more. Mind you, Taylor is 2 years younger then me so 19 as of now. She said high school was a rough time for her because she had low self esteem and let men take advantage of her. She stayed in toxic relationships because that is all she ever knew. She moved to Logan during her senior year and finished at Logan High. She moved in with her dysfunctional mother and has been miserable ever since. Her mother is an alcoholic and is hardly home. Her mother comes home every couple of weeks with a new boyfriend and is treated like a doormat. Her mothers addictions get in the way of raising her two youngest boys who are 14, and 17 and who no longer attend school. They dropped out. Taylor then tells me of her dreams and how she doesn't even know how she's going to survive the year because she may have to get legal guardianship of her two younger brothers because she is raising them while her mother is out feeding her addictions. She told me of her dreams to some day be a therapist to help children who have gone through hell so she can restore a little peace in the world.

My stomach hurt. My eyes welled up. My heart beat real fast. My lips quivered.

How dare I tell her how awful my life is because I got a 70 % on my Business midterm. Because I have the opportunity to go to school. How dare I tell her how awful my life is because my dad may have replaced me with a new family. Because my dad loves me no matter what and would never lay a finger on me. How dare I tell her how awful my life is because me and girl couldn't hang out and I really wanted to see her. Because me and girl have an awesome thing going and there is some normalcy in the relationship. How dare I tell her how stressed I am because I want to do killer things on Spring Break with my friends and not worry about money. Because I have killer parents who can actually help me out.

China humbled me, but I don't think there is a limit on humility. My heart seriously cracked a little when she told me all of this. I found it fascinating that she seemed so content with life. Her laugh makes everyone else laugh because it is so contagious.

I guess the life lesson that I learned is don't judge a person right off the bat. Get to know them. People are fascinating creatures that are highly complex. So be nice to everyone you meet, because they are fighting a battle you know nothing about.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Love Is Like A Shooting Star

Love is like a shooting star, a spectacular moment of light in the heavens, fleeting glimpse of eternity, and in a flash it's gone.

There it is. That four letter word that used to send shivers down my spine. That four letter word that made my stomach cringe and my mouth feel as if it were full of cotton. That four letter word that is thrown around like a basketball at an Aggie game. That four letter word that made me question and desire so much.


I have questioned many things in life, but love is at the top of the charts. You could say that I am not a believer. Call me crazy, juvenile, irrational, unrealistic, depressed, etc. But I have never been much of a believer in love. Granted, I love my family. I love my dog. I love my life. But what kind of love is the love that is described and shown in pictures, movies, and music? It's a love on an entirely different level. Can you give me the definition of that love? Didn't think so. Growing up in my dysfunctional family, I always questioned the validity of those 3 words, "I LOVE YOU." With the thousands of times it is said in one day, how many times are sincerely spoken? How many people truly mean it with every fiber in their being? In my experience, close to none. I mean I have said it to friends but they are just friends. Friends can be replaced and often are. I have said it to past girlfriends just because they say it to me, but they can definitely be replaced. I say it to my Taylor Swift calender, and that can definitely be replaced.

What I am saying is that I am on my quest for love. To look for it and find out what it entirely means. I haven't completely cut it out of my life, but now I am a changed man who is searching for it's meaning. A huge part of me is skeptical and doesn't really think that it will work out. But then there is another part of me, no matter how small, that says "What if it is right in front of you and you are too bitter to take it up?" I am open for new things. I am beginning to realize that the sense of vulnerability is often positive. You must put yourself out there. Take risks. Smile. If it doesn't work out, there are billions of others out there who are waiting for an awesome guy like me to sweep them off their feet. I just hope that when it is in my life, I'll know it. I hope to have that feeling of having one person be your other half. I look forward to it. I began this post thinking it would be super negative, but my thoughts never cease to amaze me. I am fascinated with how much growth has taken place in my life within the past year.

Valentines Day is a unique holiday. I have never done anything over the top. I have bought candy, flowers, and cards. I have made scrapbooks with memories and pictures. I have bought material items that soon lost their meaning. So what am I doing this year? I am going to go buy girl some of her favorite candy, flowers, and a secret surprise and decorating her room. It isn't much, but we're just at the beginning of that relationship. Who knows what will happen. I like to think I am creative, but I'd like to thank my sisters for that.

I hope you all have an awesome Valentines and that you do something memorable with someone/something you love. Whether it be go on a romantic date, or sit back and watch the first season of Friends.

Cheers to love. Whatever it means.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Stumbled Upon

Today while attempting to study, I decided to Stumble and I came across a story that really stopped and made me think.

about life

about how one decision has such an impact

how the people you hardly remember can make the biggest impact

how life can fly by

here's the story. It didn't have an author, but this is not mine. It's called "The Cab Ride I'll Never Forget."

"Twenty years ago, I drove a cab for a living.

It was a cowboy’s life, a life for someone who wanted no boss.

What I didn’t realize was that it was also a ministry.

Because I drove the night shift, my cab became a moving confessional. Passengers climbed in, sat behind me in total anonymity, and told me about their lives. I encountered people whose lives amazed me, ennobled me, and made me laugh and weep.

But none touched me more than a woman I picked up late one August night. I was responding to a call from a small brick fourplex in a quiet part of town. I assumed I was being sent to pick up some partyers, or someone who had just had a fight with a lover, or a worker heading to an early shift at some factory for the industrial part of town.

When I arrived at 2:30 a.m., the building was dark except for a single light in a ground floor window.

Under these circumstances, many drivers would just honk once or twice, wait a minute, then drive away.

But I had seen too many impoverished people who depended on taxis as their only means of transportation.

Unless a situation smelled of danger, I always went to the door. This passenger might be someone who needs my assistance, I reasoned to myself.

So I walked to the door and knocked. “Just a minute”, answered a frail, elderly voice. I could hear something being dragged across the floor.

After a long pause, the door opened. A small woman in her 80′s stood before me. She was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940s movie. By her side was a small nylon suitcase. The apartment looked as if no one had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets. There were no clocks on the walls, no knick-knacks or utensils on the counters. In the corner was a cardboard box filled with photos and glassware.

“Would you carry my bag out to the car?” she said. I took the suitcase to the cab, then returned to assist the woman. She took my arm and we walked slowly toward the curb. She kept thanking me for my kindness.

“It’s nothing”, I told her. “I just try to treat my passengers the way I would want my mother treated.”

“Oh, you’re such a good boy”, she said. When we got in the cab, she gave me an address, then asked, “Could you drive through downtown?”

“It’s not the shortest way,” I answered quickly.

“Oh, I don’t mind,” she said. “I’m in no hurry. I’m on my way to a hospice.”

I looked in the rear view mirror. Her eyes were glistening.

“I don’t have any family left,” she continued. “The doctor says I don’t have very long.”

I quietly reached over and shut off the meter. “What route would you like me to take?” I asked.

For the next two hours, we drove through the city. She showed me the building where she had once worked as an elevator operator. We drove through the neighborhood where she and her husband had lived when they were newlyweds. She had me pull up in front of a furniture warehouse that had once been a ballroom where she had gone dancing as a girl. Sometimes she’d ask me to slow in front of a particular building or corner and would sit staring into the darkness, saying nothing.

As the first hint of sun was creasing the horizon, she suddenly said, “I’m tired. Let’s go now.”

We drove in silence to the address she had given me. It was a low building, like a small convalescent home, with a driveway that passed under a portico. Two orderlies came out to the cab as soon as we pulled up. They were solicitous and intent, watching her every move. They must have been expecting her. I opened the trunk and took the small suitcase to the door. The woman was already seated in a wheelchair.

“How much do I owe you?” she asked, reaching into her purse.

“Nothing,” I said.

“You have to make a living,” she answered.

“There are other passengers”.

Almost without thinking, I bent and gave her a hug. She held onto me tightly.

“You gave an old woman a little moment of joy,” she said. “Thank you.”

I squeezed her hand, then walked into the dim morning light. Behind me, a door shut. It was the sound of the closing of a life.

I didn’t pick up any more passengers that shift. I drove aimlessly, lost in thought. For the rest of that day, I could hardly talk. What if that woman had gotten an angry driver, or one who was impatient to end his shift? What if I had refused to take the run, or had honked once, then driven away?

On a quick review, I don’t think that I have done anything more important in my life.

We’re conditioned to think that our lives revolve around great moments. But great moments often catch us unaware – beautifully wrapped in what others may consider a small one."

Sorry for the length, but I love it.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

My Hero and Best Friend

If any of you know me really well, you should know that there is a single person who has influenced my life in more ways than they could ever know. I have never really experienced the typical "you meet someone and instantly click" until that. I met her through my neighbors in Snow Hall. I remember it as if it were yesterday.

I was making myself a delicious quesadilla on my roommate Cam's Quesadilla Maker but I never purchased a cheese grater so I always borrowed the neighbors. I walked down the hall approximately 20 feet to room 308. The residence of the Bountiful High girls, M Rhoads, and Sienna. When I knocked, I was greeted by a foreign figure. She was laughing and had the presence of a mature woman. She wore ragged cut-off jeans, a red/white plaid shirt tucked in, with the coolest kicks I have ever seen. She smiled with her perfect, white teeth. Her hand reached out to grab mine as she said, "Hi! My name's Rachel! It's nice to meet you!" My smile was from ear to ear.

She was beautiful. Again, if you know me, I have a unique sense of humor and not that many people get it. Rachel got it. We clicked and I spent over 20 minutes discussing life, love, and politics with her. I knew it was the start of an awesome relationship. I then found out that we were in the same Sociology class and our love blossomed. We have had thousands of memories, jokes, and hamburgers together. If there is one person who gets me, it is Rachel Kime. Here are just a couple of the thousands of pictures we have together.

My heart seriously hurts because I miss her so much. She is currently in Provo Utah at the Missionary Training Center while she is preparing to serve a mission for her church. She is called to serve in Carlsbad, California and she is asked to learn the Spanish Language.

I am so proud of her. She is such an awesome person and those of you who have the privilege of knowing her, know how truly inspiring she is. She makes me want to be a better person. She accepts me for my flaws and loves me unconditionally. She is there even when I am not always there for her. Rachel Kime is the definition of selfless. I can't wait to be reunited with her. Only 17 more months.

Her favorite quote from Invisible Monsters,

"Nothing of me is original. I am the combined effort of everybody I have ever known.

This is strange because Rachel Kime is the most unique person I have ever met. Can't wait to see you, Rach. God speed.