Random Friday Five “FIRST OF 2011” Edition

by brandt

The first Random Friday Five of 2011. It has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?  I always liked this time of the year.  Personally, it reminds me of my high school days when my swimming season kicked into full force and we were actually competing in meets.  Metaphorically, it’s the start of a new year, and a start of a new chapter in the story of Ashley and I’s lives.  And from a kitty perspective, this is what they think of the new year: “…………………”  (that’s them thinking absolutely nothing).

Wait,  did I say kitty?


Funny Pictures - Cat Head Start on New Years
Courtesy of Lolcats

1. I’m not into resolutions. I never have been. I probably never will be.  Partly, because I live my life in priority.  Hourly, daily, weekly, monthly, yearly, lifetime, sometimes it feels like I’m always re-arranging priorities.  I’ve tried getting into goals, and it just doesn’t work.  The other thing about priorities is I can get as specific or as broad as I want, instead of having to follow some certain format like with goals (a la the SMART format)  Some people like Salt and Vinegar potato chips (like Ashley), some people like Cheetos, but they all end up in the same place.  Anyways, because of that, here’s my top priorities for 2011 (in no particular order)

  • First, I’d like to eat healthier.  Not just “things that are good for me,” but I’d like to cut down on the carbonated beverages (to which I’m pretty good at drinking diet varieties) and a few of my “Dirty Little Food” secrets, mostly, Krispy Kreame Donuts, Tim Horton’s, and McChicken sandwiches and french fries from McDonald’s.  I know.  I can collectively hear you squirm in uncomfortableness that I actually like those things.
  • Second, I’d like to swim in a swim meet before year-end.  That means I need to start swimming again, and getting into racing shape, which is something that I haven’t done since I was 18 years old.  Needless to say, I’ve got a long way to go on that.
  • Third, I’d like to read more.  Ashley’s an English major, and she would always read these really deep books and want to discuss them with me like the way we discuss movies.  But when she leans over and says “So what do you think about Faulkner,” I sit there with a glazed over look.  Now that I’m not reading case studies every night, it’s priority three.
  • My fourth priority, which has been unchanged since the day we got married, was to continue to make Ashley laugh once a day.  She can tell you, I try, really hard.  And lots of times, it comes off as really bad jokes, corny humor, and puns.  But I figure if I make her laugh once a day, she’s gotta still like me a little bit, and if she’s laughing, she’s happy.  Thus, I’ve done my job as a husband.

2. I’ve had my Kindle for about a week now, and I cannot say enough good things about it. I have a Motorola Droid powered by the Android Operating System, and had a Kindle app for that for about 6 months.  I had a few books on there, but the biggest problem was the brightness of the screen and the battery life on my phone.  Especially in low-light situations, my eyes would really strain and it felt like I was reading off a computer screen.  However, the way I could describe the Kindle screen is that of an Etch-a-Sketch – it looks like black graphite pieces filling in.  There’s no strain on the eyes, you can read it in just about any lighting situation (except for in the dark, it doesn’t have a back light), and it’s so light you won’t even notice it.  That being said, there are a few things to be aware of if you get one.  First, turning the pages is not instantaneous.  It’s something you notice when you first get it, but doesn’t become an issue.  It’s just…different.  Second, I wish  there was more variety for books published between 1940-1985.  Third, there are some things that holding a book allows you to do that you can’t do with a Kindle: Make notes in the margins, see how far along you are in the book, to actually hold printed pages, etc.  Ashley was impressed, but doesn’t know exactly how she feels about it yet (being an English major, she is very reverential of books).  That being said, I would get this for ANYONE who is a reader, and can almost guarantee they’ll love it.

3. Jersey Shore premiered Season 3 last night. I didn’t watch.  I’m looking at my “Wristwatch of Fame,” and that show is showing “14:59.”

4. Ashley has never been good with the winter. She doesn’t do well with the cold (which is amazing she lasted in Southeast Idaho, walking to class on frigid January mornings at -20* outside), she doesn’t like the lack of sunlight, and she doesn’t like driving in the snow.  The one piece of hope she’s holding on to is the fact that every day that goes by now gets a little longer with sunlight.  While I don’t like not having the sun either (we usually get to work before the sun is up and drive home while it’s going down), I’m inside most of the time so I don’t notice it.  I think the worst was when I was in high school, swimming competitively, and working.  I had to get up at 5:00 AM to make it to practice by 5:30 AM, and then after school, practice in the afternoon, and working as a lifeguard/swim instructor/pool maintenance guy at the same pool, would usually get home at about 9:00PM at night.  While it sounds like a crazy schedule, that was one of the best times of my life.  You want to talk about not seeing the sun, I think that wins.  Unless you live in Alaska or something.

5. There is some good news coming out this morning about the economy and the jobless reports.  Yahoo Finance is reporting that the economy has added 103,000 jobs in December, and the unemployment rate dropped from 9.7% to 9.4%, “its lowest level in 19 months.”  As someone who was directly affected by the economy back in April of 2009, and who was able to make it out of the hopelessness that comes with it, I’ve always kept tabs on the unemployment rate.  Sure, its slow, and according to the same report,

the job growth fell short of expectations based on a strengthening economy. And the drop in unemployment was partly because people stopped looking for work.

But that doesn’t mean gloom and doom.  Slow and steady when it comes to the economy is the way to go.  We’ve seen what happens with big boom periods, and while the success when you’re a part of that boom is great, the fall can hurt.  A lot.  So any news when it comes to dropping in unemployment in my book is good news.

Along the housing front, I’ve been banished from speaking anything about any news going on at all from Ashley.  I made a small mention of it in the last post, and things almost fell apart.  I’m now entering the cone of silence.  I said, the cone of silence, not the cone of shame!

Pictures courtesy of CelebMagnet, HealthyRevelations, The Washington Examiner, and The Automatic Earth.


5 Comments to “Random Friday Five “FIRST OF 2011” Edition”

  1. You make it sound like I don’t like you most of the time. Sure you’re a wierdo, but I still like hanging out with you.

  2. “I’m looking at my “Wristwatch of Fame,” and that show is showing “14:59.””

    This is the best thing I’ve ever heard anyone say about Jersey Shore recently. However, I’m still watching it this weekend.

    • that’s the problem with Jersey Shore – someone (probably Ashley) is going to hear about something on there, and it’s going to suck me in, and I’ll be addicted watching this train-wreck of a show (again). It’s like those gawkers who slow down on the freeway to stare at bad accident (rubberneckin?) – I don’t do it on the roads, but I do it with this debacle of a show.

  3. Hey kiddies! I awarded you and Ashley the stylish blogger award in my post today ❤

    can't wait to hear your 7 random facts!

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