Monday, December 22, 2008

Word of the Time Period


Worth googling. I promise.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

It's A Really Great Song, But I Wouldn't Like It, or, An Open Letter, or, Ways to Antagonize Your Audience

Dear Sir or Madame Whose Blog I Occasion,

Why do you people think you have better taste in music than I do?

I've got news for you. You don't.

Believe it or not, I don't actually want to listen to your music while reading your blog. Not now. Not ever. I'd rather listen to a) the quiet whir of the heater under my desk, b) my own music, c) that "It's Delilah" crap 24-7, d) a dentist's drill, or e) basically ANYTHING other than your particular music. It's amazing how opposite our taste in music clearly is. I won't begrudge you treating yourself to that slop, but it's like you are making me pay a tax with my ears for the privilege of viewing your blog. Maybe it's just my fiscally conservative upbringing, but I just don't think the public will tolerate this particular type of taxation much longer. So, please, if you love our great country, get rid of those auto-play songs!

Now, as most reasonable people have discovered, providing people with music they can choose to listen to whilst perusing your blog is acceptable webehaviour. But removing my choice in the matter? Forcing me to listen to your music, which invariably stinks wore that tarry-black-red-brown gunk that comes out of someones nose 2 weeks after sinus surgery, while my browser is aimed at your blog? That sounds awfully similar to communism, and smells worse than the Tijuana dump. Hopefully people come to their senses quicker than Castro. Because communism kills, people. Communism kills.



Friday, December 5, 2008

Crack Cocaine, Marijuana, and Jazz Music, or, Family Practice = TV Time Out, or, People Are Crazy

I'm at a Family Medicine clinic this month, which means my hours are, as my friend Matthew would put it, sweet. Which means I started a new TV show that someone recommended a long time ago. It's a little Canadian show called Corner Gas. I haven't seen enough to give it my own endorsement, but the opening was probably the best I've ever seen. Judge for yourself.

And they have a Wallflowers song during the title sequence.

Sweet. Except . . . I thought Canadians were supposed to be all nice and polite and stuff . . .

Also, I found a couple of new comic sites to add to my Google Reader. A Softer World is awesome. They are consistently hilarious, if you are a bad person. Another which is usually pretty funny is Married To The Sea. The other day their comic reminded me of some of our patients.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Things Worth Staying Up For, or, Go UTES!

What's the best way to cap off a 14 hour day at school?

It didn't even feel that early the next morning.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

When I Grow Up, or, My Thoughts Exactly

People keep asking me what type of physician I want to be. I'm still not very sure, but that decision needs to be made in the next 6 months.

If I had to go back and do it again, I would, and I would want to become just like Robert Kirby. The guy is the most consistently awesome writer since, well, Dave Barry. Sortof. Agree or disagree with his content, he pulls this off masterfully.

Robert Kirby, Salt Lake Tribune

A couple of years ago, I wrote a column in which I announced my official position on gay marriage. Basically, I don't care.

Not only do I not care if gays get married, it is none of my business. As a flaming heterosexual, it's a full-time job for me just to keep my thoughts clean in church. I don't have the energy to fret about somebody else's libido.

The column must have resurfaced on the Internet. I'm getting mail again telling me what a failure I am as a Mormon because I'm not solidly behind Proposition 8. As I understand it, the California ballot item would prevent the domestication of homosexuals. Or something like that.

Here are just a few of the attempts to get me to see reason.

"Are you a member or not? Do you want gays to get married in the temple? Please follow the brotheren's [sic] council [sic] on Proposition 8. This is a important gospel principal [sic]." G., e-mail.

"No unclean thing can enter the house of the Lord. Gays are unclean because of the Scriptures. You have to be hot or cold about it or the Lord will spat you out." T., e-mail.

"Were you listening in church when the letter was read from the First Presidency about supporting proposition eight?" R.Y., e-mail.

"Get with Prop 8 or your [sic] a homo." Anonymous, letter.

Hard as it is to counter such brilliant logic, my position hasn't changed. The only serious concern I have about gays getting married is that they'll register someplace pricey.

The church is serious about the sanctity of marriage. I get that. But aren't more potentially "dangerous" marriages already being performed out there?
For example, I hear in church all the time about marriage being ordained of God.
But I also hear about how the glory of God is intelligence.

Shouldn't it be against the law for stupid people to get married? What's more harmful to society - two well-dressed men getting married and settling down, or two idiots tying the knot and cranking out any number of additional idiots?

You should have to pass a harder test to get married than the one we currently have. Essentially, there are but two questions: "How old are you?" and "Is that your sister?" Hell, you could pass this test just by guessing.

There are drawbacks. Most people get married when hormones and youth make them about as dumb as they'll ever be. So, even a relatively easy test would by default raise the age limit to about 40.

With an increased marriage age limit, there would be fewer births. Genealogy would become easier to do. With fewer births, there would be fewer children born gay. Hey, isn't that what Heavenly Father would want?

OK, I was just kidding about that. But if you're really serious about putting a stop to gay sex, let them get married.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Why It's Cool To Be Marginalized, or, Woe Unto the . . . Gullible?

It becomes so easy to screw with people when you're part of a marginally acceptable group. For whatever reason, I was eating a donut during a meeting this morning. With a spoon. A friend of mine was next to me, and thought it awful strange.

I told him that Mormons believe that eating things with our hands makes the food dirty, allowing Satan to take control of our bodies.




Of course this kind of thing is always followed with, "You know I'm joking, right?" I'm sure my friends are just trying to be polite to the religious nut-jobs, and I know it's not nice to take advantage of that, but it sure is a lot of fun screwing with people.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Going to Hell?, or, Dating, or, What are you up to this weekend?

To quote a recent friend,
"Isn't it fun that we are at the point in our lives that everyone is scared for our eternal salvation so they try to hook us up with everyone they know! Cuz you know that when we hit thirty we are doomed, right? [. . .] But you, I'm afraid are a bit should work on that before you burn!"

Friday, September 5, 2008

Serious and slightly depressing, or, Life in general

So, I have no idea how to handle a certain situation I have been facing weekly, if not daily. This morning's ride in the elevator up to my hospital floor illustrates perfectly, I believe.

Entering the elevator with only a few other people, I smile at the 50-60 yr old woman, holding two cups of coffee. Saying hello, I ask, "How are you?"

Turns out that trivialities like that, when wearing a white coat, are not taken as such. The woman replied, "Well, they're taking my grand-daughter off of everything today, and they're just going to let her go."


What do you do? I mean, what in the world is there to do?


I said, "Oh, I'm so sorry." and I was.

I felt bad for her and her family.

I also felt bad that I'd asked the question, and I also felt bad that I was wearing the white coat.

Why the animosity towards the white coat? Not only because it is the fomite from hell, but because it made her want to share about the little baby, who was about to die.

And "they" were the ones doing it.

And "they" wear white coats too.

Just like me.


On a related note, is there a good way to walk out of a dieing person's room and say, "Have a good day"?

I realize this is disjointed. I should rework this instead of posting it immediately. But I'd rather not dwell on this anymore than I already have. I'll attempt humor again in the next post.

Friday, August 22, 2008

OVERHEAD LINES: A New Fetish? A Truly Potent Potable?

Guy, to guy: Dude, you doing the Elk Urine?

(The capitalization was audible).

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Saturday, July 12, 2008


Woman to man: Can you saran-wrap her? I can't get to her right now.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Two recommended reads

I came across two articles in the past couple of days that I really enjoyed. The first is by Robert Kirby, who is a great tongue-in-cheek writer for the SLTrib. For anyone not aware of the Trek phenomena that seem so popular among Mormon youth groups, be grateful.

Kirby: Crossing the plains was a pain
Robert Kirby
Tribune columnist
Article Launched: 06/21/2008 12:00:00 AM MDT

My great-great-grandfather Korihor Kirby trekked to Zion in 1855. He brought along my three grandmas, a regiment of children, two oxen, a dog, a sack of mustard seed and a banjo with a set of teeth marks in it.
The fact that they crossed the plains at all is the only resemblance my ancestors' experience has with the correlated version of what transpired. That we came at all is either a miracle or a misunderstanding.
The popular history of the great Mormon migration is one of vast hardship endured through faith and prayer. There were miracles aplenty along the way - food falling out of the sky, unseen Nephite spirits helping pull the wagons, and babies born in bison stampedes.
I concede that such things probably happened, but not that they were the rule. All sorts of Mormon personalities crossed the plains, including my family.
According to Grandpa Korihor's daily ledger titled Brethren That Owe Me Money, he wasn't exactly wild about coming to Utah. He liked Nauvoo. From his own pencil stub:
"Sun. May 20 (1855) - Church. Another discourse about gathering unto Zion. Am NOT going."
"Tues., June 5 - Dance. Pres. Pratt unduly attentive to Sister Grimm. Ministered unto him with banjo and fist."
"Wed., June 6 - Sold tavern. Leave for Deseret in morning. Anyone not in wagon gets left."
My grandmothers'journals contain mostly domestic observations about the overland trail, how hard it was to wash clothes, feed children, and keep the wagon clean during Family Wagon Evenings.
Grandma Meany occasionally took the time to pen her spiritual convictions, all of them heartfelt essays about how much God hated her husband.
"July ? - Delivered another child in the rain. It's what I get for marrying a Telestial spirit."
This isn't to say that my ancestors didn't receive divine help getting to Utah, just not the kind you'll read about in Ensign magazine. From Korihor's ledger:
"Aug. 1, Platte River - Mustard mush gone. Children clamorous about remaining distance. Went river pray for deliverance or drown self. Pelican hit by lightning. Dined on same. Beak and feet to bishop for tithing. Lord good but not overly generous."
My ancestors arrived in Salt Lake City Sept. 22, 1855, having taken nearly twice as long to cross the plains as the average Mormon.
Today, Mormon youth re-enact the pioneer trek as a way of understanding what it took to build Zion. Four grueling days of pushing a handcart across Wyoming teaches them something, I guess. Reading about it is enough for me.
It's not enough for my editor, though. She called me into her office today and told me to go buy a hat and a bucket of sunscreen because, "We're sending you to cover one of the LDS treks next month."

The second is by a blogger over at, and while the whole article was fine, it was two paragraphs that I really liked. Most of you know there are types of Mormons that drive me nuts. This woman hits the nail on the head with one of those types.

This is not a Mormon blog. It’s a blog written by a Mormon lady who occasionally goes all Mormony on you. I enjoy mocking my own culture sometimes–not to be all subversive and in your face, but because that’s just how I roll. I mock because I love. I love being a Mormon, and I love Mormondom in general. That doesn’t mean I’m blind to the church’s flaws and weaknesses, in its leadership and/or its membership. Some people wonder why, considering all my doubts and alleged square-peggishness, a sarcastic suckhead like me sticks with an institution that is designed for cookie-cutter sheep-type people with great teeth and awesome hair. Well, the fact is I am not that special, I don’t like my boat rocked, and my teeth and hair are pretty great, if not outstanding. But it comes down to this: the church is my home. Mormons are my family. We’ve got our skeletons and our crazy Aunt Myrtles. I can take good-natured jokes about this stuff because I’m willing to own the kooks and the skeletons. And in turn I can joke about it because I have such deep affection for the community–an affection I think is obvious to anyone who reads me without prejudice.

It is not obvious to a certain subset of Mormons, people who think being Mormon means never having to be ironic. I’m sorry that you people are irony-deficient. I wish there were a supplement you could take, because then you wouldn’t leave random comments on my site telling me that I’m bigoted and have no manners. This happens from time to time, and I usually shrug it off because, whatever, they don’t know me and they don’t care, why waste the emotion. When somebody leaves a comment like, “Your a little retard, Mormons are great,” I don’t even feel compelled to correct their spelling, or to point out that “retard” is not a euphemism that charming people use. I definitely don’t see the point in explaining that I myself think that Mormons are great, because if they didn’t want to understand the first time, they’re usually not motivated to get it the second time either.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

OVERHEARD LINES: Creation of a Vegetarian

Man: What did you do today?
Little girl (with excitement): I got to hold a baby chicken!
Man: Oh, that's nice, because that's exactly what we're eating tonight.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

OVERHEARD LINES: Woman at Mexican Restaurant, with therapist?

"I've had plenty of old people touch me at the supermarket."

Monday, June 2, 2008

Getting What You Pay For, or, Clint Clips the Competition, or, "Oh Boy"

The problem with free stuff is that obviously you get what you pay for. Even if it's as simple as cleaning up the neckline. I hadn't realized how much hostility Clint had built up inside until after asking for a favor. Doesn't quite have the steadiest surgeon's hands, does he? At least his fees are affordable.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

I'm done. DONE!

If I hear the words "High" and "Yield" anywhere near each other - even in the same sentence - I'm going to have to punch someone in the throat.

USMLE Step 1 was my blyad! (hopefully)

I just thought this was cool. I'm a geek, I know. Maybe two of you will like it too. Geeks.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Memorial Day

Suggested read of the week. Really. Read this.

My thanks for their sacrifices, whatever shape or form, however large or small.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Times It Is OK To Be Blue, or, Only in the UT

From SLTrib's Sunday paper:
Delegates at the Salt Lake County Republican Convention on May 8 passed a resolution on energy independence that states, "Utah alone has enough oil and natural gas resources to supply the United States for tens of thousands of years."

Two delegates - a geologist and an engineer - stood to speak against the resolution because, they said, that statement was blatantly false.

But they were talking to Utah Republicans, who have shown disdain for science getting in the way of ideological blustering.

The resolution cited as its source "members of the Utah State Legislature," the same body where the statement once was made that since there is a dog species, and there is a cat species, but there is no "dat" species, the theory of evolution obviously is bunk.

But there is such a thing as a "cog."
Hah! Take that, flawed-GOP-logic!

I also feel like that would fit in well in a Brian Reagan bit. Take that as whatever commentary you will on the Utah legislative bodies.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Distractions, from Mormon Culture, or, as Mateo woud say, "How Embarassing!"

Mormon horror movie titles.

Book of Mormon, peep edition (no stones involved).

These both provided moments of mirth this morning (oh, Bryce and his clever use of alliteration! He's so smart! I bet he's going to score a million on those boards he should have been studying for instead of looking at random tidbits on the Internet!).

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Second Star to the Right, or, Straight Outtta London?

I think this will be my last post about my hair. Since I have complete control over the content of this site, that should be easy to manage. We'll see if I stick to it.

My mother wants to know when this phase is going to end. Good to know I'm still going through phases. Now that I have solidly entered the "Peter Pan Syndrome" zone, I might as well document it a little more, especially since this is a once-in-a-lifetime* offer, only good for maybe the next week or two.

*Well, I have dyed my hair before, and I'm not entirely convinced I won't ever do it again, but probably not quite like this.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Reason #58 not to drink

Fetor hepaticus: breath that smells like a freshly-opened corpse. Due to liver failure.

Physical diagnosis rocks.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Mad as a Hatter, or, Dreams of Belladonna, or, Make it stop!

So I'm in the midst of board-study, which means 8-12 hours a day of trying to cram medical knowledge into my head, so that on Thursday, 5/29, I can have the privilege of having a $495 exam (that may or may not determine future opportunities) take me behind the woodshed and . . . well, my mother reads this, so I'm just going to stop there.

I laid down for a minute during my lunch break Friday and had a strange dream. I was on my family's old couch - the one where you would lay if you were sick, not having to practice piano for the day, able to skip out on church with no feeling of remorse, and dominate the TV remote with no fear of parental intervention. In the dream, I had the heavy, sick feeling of having the flu, or the croup like when you were a kid. However, I was still 27 in the dream.

My dad approached, with a large syringe in his shirt pocket. Now, my family will recognize this, and admittedly it isn't the most oblique piece of foreshadowing, but let me give a little background. When we were growing up, Pop would call just before he left the office, usually while Ma was serving dinner (nope, we didn't wait). As Dad entered, we could all see him approach from the garage. If one of the kids was sick, he would bring home the stuff he needed, whether the otoscope or the penicillin or whatever. If it was penicillin, we knew immediately, because he had four large syringes in his shirt pocket that he would put on a little shelf, in plain sight, as he grabbed his stool to sit up to the table. We all knew what those meant. That Dad didn't love us.

After dinner Pop would march us one by one to get this injection. It was probably a better method than when, in the middle of the night, he would army-crawl into the room my sister I shared and give us our shots as we slept. "Wait," you say, "that sounds like a good idea. The little tykes wouldn't even know about it. Save them the pain." Well, you'd be right, unless your sister woke up and saw her Dad stick a big shot in her brother and then try to do the same to her. Ameree didn't like Dad for quite a little while after that.

Back to my dream. I'm 27, and I have had 2 years of medical school. My dad approaches me with this needle, and I ask, "What are you even trying to give me?"

"2% Atropine."

Now, a bit of background here, too. Atropine in no way is helpful for someone with the flu. It's one of the drugs you give someone whose heart has stopped, or maybe if they've inhaled Sarin in a Tokyo subway.

"Dad, I don't need that." I try and fend him off.

He uncapped the needle with his teeth.

"Dad, what the hell? I really don't effing need that!"

He got really upset that I had said, "effing," and to teach me a lesson, gave me the shot in the right peck.

Now, my body started reacting appropriately - in the dream I knew the side-effects of this particular drug. I became flushed, really pissed off, stopped sweating, and because my heart was pounding, woke up. The message was clear.

The USMLE Step 1 examination is trying to kill me.

Now, before you go all Freud on me, the only reason I think it was my dad that tried to kill me in this dream was because he is a medical doctor, and my brain is getting really bugged at all this medical information I keep trying to shove in there, and hence my brain used Dad as a representation of the medical community. We have one of the better Father/Son relationships I know of, so take that Freudian theory behind the woodshed, why don't you?

Friday, May 9, 2008

Things that make cleaning the back seat worth it.

You wouldn't believe the mess these three can make. There are a couple of others that would give these ones a run for their money, but I didn't have new pictures of them. Gimme a month.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

My Third-Life Crisis (Redux), or, How to Be Like Bryce, or On Being a Square

As I talked about before, I have been experiencing something of a faux-crisis in my life. In the latest portion of said drama, I've been spending all day, everyday, studying. 5/29 at 8:00 AM I will start the exam that could well determine the answer to the eternal temporal question: What is the meaning of my life?

I have, however, been taking some breaks. Including something of a tradition with our friends of watching Thursday night TV at my place. I still invited everyone over, but not for the whole lineup, just Lost and The Office. However, it also doubled as my birthday celebration, so I invited the whole old gang - including those that have withdrawn themselves by entering into the holy bonds of matrimony (or engagement).

It's hard for me to get everyone together and not have a haircut. Now, this isn't really a rebellion or anything. It's just something I've never done before and it's my last chance to do it. When I dye it red next week, that's going to be out of rebellion. My roommates have really been chafing - they just don't get it! (Did the angst come through there?)

On an almost-related tangent, do you remember how sweet N64's Goldeneye 007 game was? Remember how cool the characters were? They had those squarish heads with the facial features painted on?

Man, the rocket launcher was sweet. Not as cool as slappers, though.

Well, if you wanted to make yourself a Bryce-head (limited-run collector's item!), you just need to get a box, print out these 5 pictures, and paste them to the 5 sides of the cube (leave one open to stick your head in). Just don't try to shoot someone holding uzi's with your arms crossed like that. Leaves you wide open for the rocket down the throat.

Front Side
Right Side
Left Side

I think the back is my favorite; it comes to a tail/point. Sweet.
Almost unanimously the girls love it. Allegedly.

One problem with the box-head that you should be aware of, though, is that you won't fit in your car anymore. I know I don't. I have a lot more sympathy for the women of the 80's and 90's whose big hair wouldn't let them sit up straight in a car.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

My Dad Taught Me To Share, or, Birthdays Are Special in My Family

I have fond memories from my childhood of my brother wrapping up birthday presents in a dirty t-shirt from his bedroom floor, or of my father eating the ice-cream from a new carton and being sure that the next person who opened it would find a completely smooth layer of ice-cream, seemingly fresh from the store, except that it was an inch below the rim.

Now, while I was happy to get this bag of truffles in a box from my folks for my birthday, I did find one thing absolutely hilarious.
It was already opened. Thanks for saving me the work, Pop.

Monday, April 21, 2008

On The Loss of Privacy, or, Everybody Else Was Doing It, or, My First Triathalon

When is it cool to walk around in spandex underwear? When you get paid a ton, speak Russian, can throw someone ten feet in the air, and have mad hops (while I realize it's not typical to recognize such individuals as "cool," I'm pretty sure they could beat me up); it's also hip to do the spandex thing when you are at a triathlon.

So at the start, everyone gets their gear ready in the transition area. Lay your socks/shoes out, your shirt, helmet, gloves, glasses. That way, when you run across the really dirty and gravelly parking lot from the swim area, you can spend as little time as possible wiping crap off your feet and jumping on the bike. The weird part, to me at least, was that once you laid out your gear, you took off all your clothes.

Seriously. It's crazy. I mean, something like this is not even the slightest bit out of place.

See, a lot of people had these nifty expensive padded shorts that doubled as a swimsuit and biking/running shorts. Not me. I had underwear. Granted, spandex, black underarmour jockey shorts look a lot like the triathlon shorts. Except for the fly in front.

So, I left all my clothes behind at the transition area, took my goggles and proceeded to wait for my group to get the go-ahead for the swim to start. I may or may-not have had a little pre-race trots, but as I sat in a stall contemplating the upcoming race, a dude barged into my stall.

Yes, of course there was a lock. Yes, I twisted it. Didn't make much of a difference. The funny part was what happened next. This dude looked down at me and said, "Hey buddy, how're you doing?"

Well, I was doing all right. After waiting a little bit, things started all of a sudden. The swim was crazy and crowded, so I was pretty disappointed with my time. It was indoor and only 400m, but the lanes just got crowded so I didn't get the chance to really hit a pace I felt comfortable with. There would just be these big jams of people, and I didn't want to crawl over them or get kicked in the face.

The bike ride was fun. My buddy Jeff and I started at about the same time, but didn't realize it. At the top of a downhill portion, my shoelace got tangled in my chain, so I pulled off to untangle it when I hear him fly past, "Hey, are you all right?" He didn't recognize me until he heard my voice, he said. At the bottom of the hill, the course took a ninety degree turn, went 200 yards, and then right back up the hill. I caught up to him right there and we cruised the rest of the course pretty much together.

It was a lot more fun than I expected. I did absolutely zero outdoor bike-riding to prepare, and was really nervous about this part of the event. That, and the fact that I was riding my 9 year old mission bike, none other than the trusty Liahona. After the race, I noticed that only ~5% of the competitors rode a mountain bike. For good reason. It rained on us during pretty much the whole ride, but it was really fun.

There is no way to really describe the next transition. Going from the bike to the run was just weird. My legs weren't jelly, and they weren't trying to give out, but they were definitely not into the whole running thing at first. After the first quarter-mile it was fine, but they sure didn't like me at first.

My goal originally had been 90 minutes. Driving the course the night before I realized that the bastards had lied when they advertised the course as "flat as a pancake." It was not the Pyrenees, but there were a few sizeable hills that I had not been expecting. My final time was 1:44.40. Maybe it's just the exhibitionist in me, but I can't wait to put the spandex on for the next one.

Swim (400m):

Transition 1


Transition 2



Wednesday, April 16, 2008

My Up-Coming Life

1 07/07/2008 Surgery Core
2 09/02/2008 Pediatrics Core
3 11/03/2008 Ambulatory Care Clerkship Selective
4 12/01/2008 Ambulatory Care Clerkship Family Medicine
5 01/05/2009 Internal Medicine Core
6 03/02/2009 Obstetrics and Gynecology
7 05/04/2009 Psychiatry Core
8 06/01/2009 Neuroscience Core

This is my schedule for the next year. We got to choose them to a limited degree (ie the order, but even there we didn't get tons of control), I couldn't get too stressed out about this like many of my classmates have. I think it'll work out - it's the same classes, just in a different order. I guess Surgery first is a bit of a baptism by fire, though.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

My Third-Life Crisis, or, Groundhogs STILL Taste Like Chicken, or, The Magnificent Mullet

One of the most memorable experiences I have had while in the OH has nothing to do with cadavers, classrooms, or even Ohio. Last year my friend Mark had the genius idea to go to Gobbler's Knob in Punxsutawney, PA in early February. Groundhog's Day will never be the same. It turned out to be one of the more memorable road trips I've taken. (Chris chronicled the experience here).

It was only logical, then, that we planned to attend again this year. Preparations began when we noticed the Mormon chapel practically next door to the Knob. What Providence! Chris took over the planning, and it spun out of control. Our little pilgrimage of 10 or so spiraled out of control and we had at least 50 YSAs sleeping in the hallway. One of the more comical experiences I've had; if The Bard had been Mormon, he would have had something like that night in one of his comedies. (Again, Chris's comments of this past year's trip here).

While there are some funny stories to tell from either year, I'm only going to focus on one. My preparation for this trip began last September. I usually wake up a bit slowly, but this morning I woke with a start. I had a sudden epiphany. Unless I fail Step 1, I will start my clinical rotations July 2008. That means that, for the next 5 to 8 years, I will constantly be subjectively evaluated by men and women over me. Now, I realize that the medical profession isn't the old-school conservative bastion that it used to be, but it is certainly more conservative than many other professions. I realized, as the early dawn's light filtered through the mini-blinds, that I was going to need to have a conservative haircut for the foreseeable future. Thus, being 26 (with the expected age of 78 or so), I entered into my third-life crisis.

I have never had a mullet or a real mohawk. Now, as I lay pondering on this sorrowful fact, I realized that I had never had EITHER of the two haircuts that any male really should have. I mean, at least one of them. I have had the shag. I've had crew cuts. I've done the missionary haircut. I've even shaved half of my head once. But here I am, significant portion of my life gone, and I've never had two of the most important. With only eight months, I didn't think it possible.

The plan became to grow the hair to suitable length and then enjoy the mullet whilst wandering the Wintery streets of Punxsy (I mean, when in Rome . . . ) and then trim it up, and enjoy the mohawk in May as I prepared for Step 1.

Below are the results of phase 1. (I should warn those of my readers not from the West. I presume most of you have met a Jewish male who, for cultural and/or religious purposes for a time, at least, grew out his prayer-curls. Well, I'm from Utah. I chose to do the mullet for the same reason).

For comparison, here is before.
Tension mounting.

I was getting pretty nervous right here.
(I'd never really seen Mallory cut hair.
I didn't want her to screw it up).


The finished product and the remnants in a ziploc. Why?
Best White-Elephant Ever.

Groundhogs DO taste like chicken.

We added steps later.
The receding hairline was there before.

Brother DeMoux grew a mustache for the event.


I tried to transition it into a flat-top mullet.

Me, Joe, and Vinay having a Hairy-Chest off.

Smart as he may be, Mark never learns.

This is just to prove to Mom that I actually eat.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Thanks To All The Crazies, or, Ameree's Going To Love This, or, Things That Would Make Me Put My Book Down In Church

Church can be a very interesting place. We've all heard those stories. You know, the ones about the most bizarre church meetings ever. I just released a ton of endorphins reading this collection of funny experiences from Sabbath activities. I was laughing out loud all day, but I should warn you, some of it is a bit irreverent; but it is still hilarious. You wouldn't like it, though, Clint.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The Mormons are Bitter, or, Why Be Funny When Someone Else Does It So Much Better,or, Isn't Plagiarism Neat?

I stole this from, not because I supported Mitt or these American Idol contestants (which I've never seen), but because I thought this was a great satire.

Huckabee Announces Candidacy for American Idol; Vows to Defeat Mormon Finalists

HOPE, ARKANSAS — Last Thursday night, America chose its top 12 finalists on Fox’s hit show, “American Idol.” On Friday, former presidential candidate and erstwhile Baptist preacher, Mike Huckabee announced he would campaign to win the nation’s biggest singing competition.

Despite the initial shock among the entertainment elite at the politician’s decision, Huckabee has a lot of support among his base of Evangelical Christians. They see two Mormons among the top twelve contestants, and clamor, “Who can stop them?”

“Naturally, I thought of Mike Huckabee,” said one Idol fan from rural Kansas. “He’s the one who can step in and stop these Satan-worshipers from winning and legitimizing their cult….’cause that’s what it is, a cult!”

Many in the Evangelical community revere Mike Huckabee for his surge in the Republican primaries, and credit his “Huckaboom” with derailing the campaign of a Mormon, Mitt Romney.

The supporter added, “If Romney took the White House, it would make his religion look legitimate and everybody would want to join his church, just like how I’m pretty sure lots of people became Methodists after George W. Bush got elected in 2000.”

Huckabee admits he does not know much about singing, but argues he knew nothing about foreign policy, tax policy, immigration policy, or really anything except how to play the bass guitar when he began his campaign for president in 2006.

“I’m sure I’ll learn how as I go along” Huckabee said about the ins and outs of the singing competition, “the important thing is, I need to give the voters a choice. I want them to know I am the Christian Singer running for American Idol, and that they won’t find that in David Archuleta or Brooke White.”

“One more thing: Whenever either of the Mormons in the top twelve tries to out-sing me, by definition, they are engaging in negative singing. I hope voters reject their vicious attacks and vote for me.” Huckabee said.

At the end of the interview, almost as an afterthought, Huckabee asked, innocently, “Hey, don’t Mormons,” he paused, “believe singing brings glory to Satan, whom they worship?”

Update: Since our exclusive interview with Mike Huckabee, his surrogate, Charles “Chuck” Norris, has attacked David Archuleta as “too old” for the job of American Idol. Norris asserts that, based on the way past American Idols have aged under the stress of the prize, the 16 year-old Archuleta would be 84 by the time his first record goes platinum.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics, or, Living on the Edge

Funny. But completely wrong. And here’s why.

Standard Bell Curve

The bell curve is a fine model for various things. However, it fails as a model for dating/marriage for several, crucially important reasons.

First, the bell curve has no lower limit. Repeat. There is no lower age limit. If you can’t see the problem with this then GO AWAY! Second, the wide range. Simply not the way it goes. The list goes on, but gets increasingly boring.

A far better fit for this cartoon would have been the Boltzmann distribution, developed by this dude.

Boltzmann Distribution

Ignore the labels on the axes and what-not. Obviously the first, most important point, is that it just looks so much cooler. Well, that and the fact that there is an absolute lower limit. Now, that obviously has to be about age. But above that, I think, the label for the independent axis would change just to “uniqueness,” or maybe "strangeness." But then we'd get into a discussion on relativity, as perspective is everything with both of those terms. So maybe it's just the inverse of normalcy, or, "1/normalcy."

Now, I realize this last bit is something of a self-fulfilling prophecy, as I really am posting about how a Boltzmann distribution better describes marriageability than a standard bell curve, thus pushing myself WAY over to the right, but it’s truth, and if you actually know me, this shouldn’t surprise you in the least. But I think it fits the general population better, too.

So anyway, somewhere, way up in the tail of the Boltzmann Distribution, is the girl for me. That's what it should've said.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Bah, Hum Bug! or, We Ain't Nothin' But Mammals, or, Bryce is 1/16th Somali

I never posted my New Year’s Resolutions. Sorry. While this post is about my diet, and it did start around the start of the year, this is not a resolution post. This is a “Bryce is pissed off” post.

I have long held the claim that the weight many people gain around the winter time holidays is normal and (some of you may need to close your eyes for this part) part of Evolution’s way of helping mammals humans live more comfortably in the cold of the winter. (I've even suggested that the clustering of these holidays with their traditions may be resultant). A few extra pounds should come on in the late Fall and come off in the early Spring. I think that seems entirely reasonable, though I never did take a class in anthropology, so I don’t know.

So why the hell did I lose 7 pounds over Christmas break?

Let me back up and give you a brief overview of my past medical history as it relates to my weight. When I moved back into my parents’ after graduating from college, I rediscovered how my dear mother kept the house stocked with several different flavors of ice-cream. This was presumably for my friends, but as I am old and they are all married, it was really just for me, but I don’t know.

However, I also got pretty sick over that summer, had my tonsils out, and the weight stayed level. Gain equals loss. Net change of zero pounds.

I moved to Ohio and lost about 3 pounds. I didn’t have buckets of ice-cream laying around anymore. This weight loss seemed reasonable and acceptable to me. I ran a little more. Over the next 12 months I lost one pound. This Fall I lost another two. Sum: loss 6 lbs.

Then comes Christmas 2007, and I notice I have to cinch all my belts down to the smallest loop. I can’t even wear my black belt anymore; if I forget a belt, my otherwise perfectly-fitting jeans literally fall of my hips. My cheeks became hollowed. Claudia notes, “Bryce, you look really thin.” Maybe she meant it to be a complement. I don’t know.

When I came home after break, I step on the scale. Then I decide that I need to put pictures of starving kids in Africa on the fridge door so that I remember to eat. I’d lost another 7 pounds. That put me at a BMI of 19.9; underweight is 18.5. W. T. F.?

To combat this, my roommate and I have thought about having a contest, like “The Biggest Loser” on opposite day. Maybe it’ll work. I don’t know.

To that end, do any of you nameless legion have suggestions as to effective weight-gaining diets? Do you know how to put on weight? Because obviously, I don’t know.

Check your own BMI here.

By way of an update, I've put back on three or four, I think. I've been eating like a horse. And for those of you not familiar, I'm actually 1/16th Samoan. Yeah, I know. The apple fell far from that tree. Ha ha ha. Real funny.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Stalker's Paradise, or, I was wrong, or, Steve is a creep

Some things are just creepy. I realize I should not admit that; that I, a tall, young unmarried male, should not admit to qualms of any sort. Weakness will not attract anything but weakness; blah blah blah. Let me share a few random little stories from my life— that may or may not be connected—and then tell me whether or not I should admit to being creeped out. But really, tell me.

My aunt is quite frightened about my sister’s blog and scary people doing all sorts of horrible things to her because she says her husbands name, the city they live in, and posts pictures of her family there. After consulting with me, my sister decided she didn’t need to worry about it.

I added a counter to my blog. I am obviously not the most popular writer, which should come as no surprise. If you know me, you know that my attempts at humor are frail, that my intellect is weak, and that my opinions are many but without conviction, eloquence, or firmness and hence are rarely conveyed well, let alone make lasting impressions on anyone. However, one of the interesting things about this counter is that it lets me see where my hits are coming from, both physical location and referring web-site, and where they go afterwards. (Before you get too worried, I can’t tell who you are beyond what city your internet provider is in or anything beyond where you were immediately before or after my website, and that only if you clicked on a link). Now, there are some interesting trends that have appeared.

I have had hits from Portugal, Norway, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, China, India, and all over the States, with the majority in the OH and the UT. I have had referrals from the couple of LDS blogs I comment on, from a couple friends who linked to my blog on their own, and a bunch from Facebook. But then there are the more random hits. They range from blogs about recipes to one that was suspiciously like NAMBLA, (!) (!!) (!!!) . I have often wondered, “Where the heck are these people coming from?”

Now, I have had comments here from about three people. My sister, Ameree, and a couple friends. I have recently read a few people talking about the blogstalking phenomenon (like the second half of this entry). This does not necessarily surprise me: I read many more articles than I comment on. I can’t speak for other’s experiences, but comments are not the only way people give me feedback about what I write. Some people have chosen to email me directly Some have even talked to me in person about it. Imagine that.

Steve is that guy in my class that owes me twenty bucks. (Boise State owned Oklahoma in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl; check ESPN. Then ask the people who were in the room when we made that bet. There were plenty of them, but for some reason there isn't an extra twenty in my wallet.) I was shooting the bull with Steve yesterday about women. He told of how he was “bored as shit” (sorry Mom, his words) over Christmas and read my blog (What other reason is there, anyway?). He brought up my two call rule that I wrote about previously, and said he identified with what I’d written, and wrote a comment. Evidently it was a little too “homoerotic” for him which isn't really saying much and then deleted it without posting. Which brings me to how these four random stories converge.

I was wrong, dear Auntie. There are plenty of creepy people Steve’s out there who can find and will read stuff that is as boring as this. Maybe we should be worried. But not about Steve-- he's got tuberculosis, so anyone should be able to outrun him.

You guessed it. Steve. Friday night. TB and all.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Overheard: Woman sending clear signal to poor sap on date

"I can't believe she made out with you! That makes me want to vomit."

Monday, January 7, 2008

Unusual, I know, but this short-story (on pg 152) is one of the funniest things I've read in a quite some time. A warning to my two non-familial readers: it is completely laced with Mormon cultural references. It should still make sense, though. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

This article (about Mormonism relative to politics) was very impressive - well-researched and really hits the nail on the head regarding the current issues.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Experience pays off!


Looks like my practice rounds against three older kids during break really paid off. I bet Silva, Gracie, or Liddel couldn't do any better. What about you?

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Favorite Vacation Moment, or, Christmas Presents, or, Giving Ty A Bloody Nose.

Without a doubt my favorite moment of the trip to Utah for Christmas was when I gave Ty (7) a bloody nose. It was at the end of a family Christmas party. Some of the kids were having a difficult time, being presented with only one gift. Thomas (3) went from a glee-filled laugh as he sat atop a horse to a painful wail of, “I need another present!” It had already been a long party, and the time was growing late. However, I am a jealous uncle, and demanded that pictures must be taken. I gathered six of my eight nieces and nephews around me. I had to twist arms, pin some down, pinch, pull, and physically coerce a few, but the pictures were taken. Some even smiled. Afterwards, we proceeded to have a WWF-style Royal Rumble. I was wrestling with Ian (9), Ty (7), Claire (6) and Thomas (3), who obviously formed one team. Eliza (2) surprisingly sat out. I was impressed with Clairesey, she usually stays out of the fray with things like that, and Ian/Ty were so good at knowing how to alter their tactics when wrestling Claire or Tom as compared to wrestling me.

At one point, I had one of the boys pinned underneath me. As I, on hand and knees, kept torturing him, Claire climbed on top of my back, grabbed my gray-and-blue rugby by the back of the collar, and started jerking as if I was a mule with the bit firmly in my teeth and she was going to show me who the boss was. She certainly got my attention. At another point, Ian was pinned under me and hitting me repeatedly in the head with a large metal top (!) as I was knuckling his sternum, at the same time Ty kept jumping on my back. The last time I pulled Ty off me he landed on a marble with his hip blade. That hurt a lot, I suppose. As he started crying, I felt the sudden need to coddle him. So I pinned him down and told him he had ten seconds to breathe and get ready. I started counting slowly. It was just so fantastic to see him start laughing, as that of course signaled, “Game on!” It was then that I noticed a rim of blood inside his right nostril. I dismissed it, thinking it was probably old or not too bad as it was not gushing out, but rather staying quietly inside his nose, and we had not seen blood smeared anywhere. Of course, as I picked him up and spun him for the upcoming body-slam, blood poured all over dear Mother’s light tan carpet (“Game Off!”), and I got to enjoy the next thirty minutes with ammonia, scrubbing her carpet. She will never even know.

You could ask him, but I bet Ty liked my present better than Grandma and Grandpa’s.

This is what set it all off.