Monday, 6 October 2008


Remember Primary?

We learned a lot of important lessons in Primary. I don't remember everything I was taught, but I know that the instruction I was given helped me become the person I am today. 

Something that has always bothered me is cruelty to animals. Why a person can think it is okay to harm or mistreat them, I will never understand. I love animals! I am grateful for them. And I know that God loves them more than I possibly could, because he created them! (and cares for them and provides for them...) 

Personally, I feel that how a person treats the animals under his dominion is a reflection of the class and character of that person. I will NEVER respect a person who treats these, the meekest and lowliest of the Lord's creations, with cruelty and inhumanity. Animals deserve our love, care, and respect, always.

Remember Primary? In closing, here are a couple titles from the Primary lesson manual: Lesson 11: I am thankful for fish, Lesson 12: I am thankful for animals, Lesson 13: I am thankful for birds and insects, Lesson 35: I can be kind to animals, Lesson 44: I can show love for animals... (not to mention countless songs in the same vein)

Friday, 3 October 2008

The College Football Parity

BYU is a good football team.

People always think they know the parameters of the team's skills. They think that BYU is great because they demolished a "strong" UCLA team; they think they're not-so-great because they could barely handle a "weak" Washington team. 

The truth is, either of those games could have gone either way. UCLA could have won that game if they didn't turn the ball over; over and over again. Washington could have won had they capitalized on all of the many BYU mistakes (and, had anyone other than Jake Locker showed up) OR... BYU could have even dominated Washington way more than they did (barring those darn Pac10 refs) 

THE POINT: Any of the top 20 NCAA division 1 teams could beat any of the other top 20 teams on any given day at any time. 

People should stop feeling like they know which teams are good and which teams aren't. There's a HUGE determining factor that you can never predict. Human emotion. That's why those computer games never predict upsets, but they happen. They happen ALL THE TIME!

To quote something we say in "the other football"... the ball is round, it can roll either way!

Thursday, 7 August 2008


Especially For Youth 2008: Steady and Sure

This summer I was a counselor for the LDS summer camp EFY (Especially for Youth). It is a week-long program where youths aged 14-18 gather together and basically just escort each other around to classes, devotionals, service activities, and dances. It's a great opportunity for them to feel the Spirit, and at the same time to make zillions of friends and not ever be bored. And, to stay up unreasonably late even though "lights out" is at eleven and they wake up at the break of dawn every day. Did I mention they are aged 14-18?

So, as a counselor you are assigned a random group of boys (or girls if you are a girl) to look after and lead from the moment they arrive on Monday afternoon until they leave first thing Saturday morning. You are with them always. This has the potential for disaster, but for me it was always a great blessing and great fun. Your group of youth is matched up with another group of youth of the opposite gender (with an accompanying counselor) and this is called your company. Companies usually have really sweet, scripture-related names, like "In The House" or "The Last Days". Companies do everything together and by the end of the week, the kids are all great friends, or at least, that's the goal.

Various duties of the EFY counselor include: waking the childs up in the morning, leading them to breakfast, teaching them a gospel-centered lesson during morning gospel study with the company, teaching them a gospel-centered lesson during evening counselor devotionals, teaching them gospel-centered lessons at various times of the day throughout the entire week, helping them feel cool and included, getting the boys to ask girls to dance during slow songs, trying not to completely take over when the kids are making their skit/cheer for the games night competition even though you really want to beat all your fellow counselor friends and your kids are seriously making really lame cheers, and being super fun/nice/kind/helpful all day every day!

Another note-worthy perk of being an EFY counselor is that there are gaggles of other EFY counselors that are on the same page as you and have serious date-potential. But, don't get too excited, as my great friend Ryan Cain always says about EFY, "It's the best place to meet girls, and the worst place to date them."


Tuesday, 11 December 2007


Coaching the Timpview Freshman Girls Basketball Team has been the greatest joy in my life this past semester, I am completely sure. I have done nothing else that has made me feel more fulfilled and happy and proud. I love coaching!

I strive to be more than just a coach. My focus isn't just on winning games and being the best. My sole aim isn't just to help the girls be better at basketball. I want to be a friend to my girls, a role-model, and a leader. I want to help them develop social skills, and leadership skills, and learn how to be team-players. I want to help them achieve their personal best, on and off the court. I want to be somebody they can trust; a coach who is fun and kind and cares about them individually.

I am proud because I know that my girls love me. I know that their parents appreciate my approach and my dedication to their daughters' happiness and well-being. I believe that I am making some kind of positive difference in these girls' lives!

This past week, I was able to notice two girls on my team that were having a hard time. I took each of them aside individually; they cried and opened up to me about the problems they were facing in their lives. I just talked to them and comforted them. I let them both go home from practice early to work out the massive amounts of schoolwork that had been crippling them with stress.

I know I made a difference to them by showing them I care.

That's what being a coach allows me to do.

About a Girl

I started dating a girl at the beginning of November.

She noticed me in the Anatomy Lab where I was "TA'ing" and wanted to look at my ankle...

Oh yeah, back in the beginning of October I obliterated my ankle during a game of volleyball. Actually, it wasn't even a game... it was hitting lines. I came down off of a hit and landed on a ball that had rolled across the gym under my feet. My left foot landed on top of the ball and rolled of laterally, severely inverting my ankle. I screamed in primal rage! Fortunately, just like last year when I sprained my right ankle, my bestbuddy Chris was there to look after me and help me get medical attention. It sucked and hurt... a lot! Turns out it was a grade three (3) ankle sprain. It took me completely out of commission for two weeks, but I got a nifty parking permit that allowed me to park in administrative parking for the rest of the term! (which ended up being useless cause my car got "deered" not a month later)...

Anyways, a month after the accident and my ankle was still nasty swollen and I had pathetically limited ROM (rage of motion). She offered to rehab my ankle for me. Being the part Hispanic that I am, I graciously accepted her welfare. She worked on my ankle at least three nights a week for the next couple of weeks. During this time, we fell in like.

We got a long really well and I really liked her. That's why it sucked so bad to have to call it off last week.

Timpview Freshman Girls Basketball Team

I am a Coaching and Physical Education Teaching minor.

Yes, it is a real minor and yes, I am that cool. And it gets better; my lovely PE Pedagogy (pronounced "ped-ah-go-gee"- I know because I was ridiculed and corrected) professor, Coach Padfield, told me of a coaching job at Timpview High School. She told me to check it out and she gave me a real good word. Well, I got the job.

This was back in the beginning of November. For the past month I have been "Coach Jordan", Head Coach of the Timpview Freshman Girls Basketball Team. It is the best and funnest thing ever!!!

I ran tryouts and selected my team. I am responsible for running practice every day. I have two assistant coaches that help me out and carry out my wishes. I am the head coach!

It's still really cool to think about.

Sunday, 11 November 2007

Deer (Pronounced "dur" for maximum effect)

This is what happened. On the Tuesday before Halloween, very early in the morning, T-Money and Mark and Jessie and I leave for Sacramento. I drove until we got to Nevada, and then everybody took turns through that desert hell until we reached beautiful California and I drove us home. Along this point of the journey, the only thing to note was that I drank two coffees and I was getting way the heck pissed off at mark and Jessie who were being retarded in the back seat. I'm pretty sure that I, in my exhausted and irrational state, threatened Mark's life if he ever kicked my seat again and I'm told I even busted out the old "Knock it off or I'm going to turn this car around!" novelty. When it was finally my turn to sleep I menacingly told them "the sun is not even up so shut up and sleep. I don't wanna hear any talking or laughing or coughing or anything... I just wanna be able to listen to my music!"

Yes, we listened to Pearl Jam's first three albums for the first 5 hours of the trip.

I also stole my blanket from them stating that it was, indeed, "My blanket!" and I nearly hit Mark in the head with a swinging arm when I woke up.

Here's something cool: If you are driving and people are annoying the ever-loving crap out of you by talking and carrying on about stupid nonsense, just gradually increase the stereo until it overpowers them.

Anyways, we arrived in Sacramento safe and sound and I was able to surprise my amazing/awesome/adorable sister Alexa on her twelfth birthday. This is a big deal because I haven't been home for a birthday of hers since she was seven. I had a great time with my family and it was good to see old friends, but more on all of that later. The moral of this post is...


On the drive home from California, just as we passed Auburn we came around a curve and a deer was standing in the middle of the left lane (which I was driving in). Taylor and Mark in the back-seat had already been woken up repeatedly by the remarkably haunting sounds of the Mars Volta pumping through my speakers, but the swerving and ridiculous race-car mechanics resulting from that idiot deer was beyond any fear or discomfort that had previously gripped them. They awoke to me, spinning the wheel to the right then to the left then back to the right like mad, all the while the car fishtailing and revolving in harmony with my frantic handiwork.

Well, we survived and everyone was okay. I wasn't shaken up very much at all, in fact I was moderately pleased with the new respect given me of everyone in the car for maneuvering the car as I did. I drove all the way to Battle Mountain before getting tired and handing the wheel over to Mark.

It just so happens that Mark hits a deer! The second deer of the journey! It jumps right out into the lane in front of my car. Mark plows through that thing like an NFL linebacker and the deer flies 6 feet into the air. It's obliterated. Unfortunately, it takes my car down with it.

As I type this I am recovering from the painful ordeal of getting my car towed, filling out the police report, stating an insurance claim, and waiting for someone from Salt Lake to come out to Wendover to pick us up, as well as the long journey by mercy-ride back to BYU.

I have an incredibly crippling fear of deer now and I anticipate them being all along our major roadways, just waiting to destroy our cars. I hate them with all I can muster.