In February of 2011, Chicago experienced a massive blizzard. During the peak of of this record-breaking blizzard, two friends and I had the brilliant idea of going for a drive. My one friend owned a 4 wheel drive Jeep, and we arrogantly thought we would be fine. Needless to say, we were wrong, and we got stuck pretty badly. But after an hour or so of pushing in the below zero temperature, the car miraculously budged from the snow bank. In a moment of bliss, we quickly jumped in and inched our way towards safety. On the way home, we passed many cars that were not so fortunate. Yet the conditions were so horrible that we could not stop. Stopping would pretty much guarantee that we would get stuck again.
On our way home, as we passed dozens of cars in ditches, I wondered what uncomfortable situations awaited the people in those cars. I imagined that a family with crying children occupied the first car. I imagined that a married couple with a rocky relationship occupied the next car (maybe this extended alone time was a foreign concept to them?). I imagined the next car contained a 16 year old guy taking a girl on their first date (maybe he knew the weather conditions in advance)?
Upon arriving at my friend's house, I realized that we dodged a rather uncomfortable bullet. If we were not able to get his Jeep out of that ditch, our night of comfort would have been traded for bitter cold, empty stomachs and a likelihood of being trapped in the snow for at least 24 hours (as many people were). Even worse, there was only one small blanket for 3 grown men...
Listening to the wind whistle fiercely outside, we had never appreciated the warmth and comforts of home so much. We threw a couple of pizzas in the oven, cracked open a few cold drinks, and cycled between playing Madden football and watching Netflix movies. These newly appreciated comforts, along with the knowledge that my work was definitely going to be cancelled the next day, gave me a short, unexpected glimpse of heaven.
I've been living in China for about a month now. It's been good so far. It's fun seeing new things, meeting new people, living with my brother's family and experiencing the night life a bit. I've already made some great friends, and don't have a lot of bored time. The Chinese people have been friendly overall, and there is definitely less violence here than in Chicagoland. It is nice to feel safe walking the streets, even at night. Overall, I am a pretty happy guy.
It's very difficult getting used to commanding a group of kindergarteners for my basketball coaching job. It makes it especially more difficult that they can't speak English very well, and it is for 1.5 hours per coaching session. I'm not inherently a commanding, authoritative speaker. Far from it. That being said, I have had great feedback as an assistant coach from my boss. What else is difficult in China? Well, I terribly miss my parents, my family and my other friends. Not to mention some of my favorite stores such as Whole Foods, Fruitful Yield and Chipotle.
At my old age, I'm not sure I'll ever get married. It's not a complaint - It's just a possibility that I know exists. Still, I want to improve my ugly dating life. For me, it's more about simply allowing my natural feelings to come out. If I feel attracted to a woman, which happens a lot in China, sometimes I try and stifle or redirect those feelings, rather than letting them out naturally. Love is natural. I need to "let it flow" more, even if it isn't necessarily romantic love. This begins by surrounding myself with friends, and it concludes with the life-giving, incredibly natural, definitely essential, very human words, "I love you".
I'm very glad I came to China. I think that living in another country/culture really opens up your mind to how people live. There are difficulties and adventures both ahead and behind. I just need to take a deep breath and learn to embrace this beautiful gift called life.
It is a horrible tragedy that KC Chiefs football player Jovan Belcher killed his girlfriend and then himself with a gun. It seems that this tragedy is igniting the old debate about gun laws. For example, Jason Whitlock, a Fox Sports columnist, referred to the NRA as the new KKK (link). Also, Piers Morgan is attacking gun laws on his Twitter:
In your opinion, would Jovan Belcher have killed his girlfriend if he didn't own a gun?
Also, if guns were completely outlawed, do you think Belcher would have observed those laws, or would he have somehow found a gun anyways?
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hey, I told Ashley about this, but just thought Id ask you too (in case he forgot to pass on the invite) My guitar teacher is in a band and they are playing next weekend. Its at a little diner/coffee shop and I think you guys might enjoy it. I know its a good distance for some of you, but if you're