Thursday, December 31, 2009

the final post of the decade: male bloggers and there's a new moon in the twilight saga


traditionally, not a lot of guys like to manage their family blog. i get it... i'm in an area of the blogoshpere that is typically dominated by women. i'm not the least bit intimidated, but i am somewhat surprised by the sexist view the rest of the world takes on the matter. take for instance a recent article in the periodical mormon times addressing mormon women who have substantially successful, not to mention fairly universal, blogs: http://www.mormontimes.com/people_news/people_church/?id=11970.

first off, yes, i subscribe to mormon times. how else will i know where donny and marie osmond summer? whether or not david archuletta is going to serve a mission? or what the next fashion trend jericho road starts will be?

that's neither here nor there, though, since the article we're talking about, in case you haven't read it or can't tell from the title already, highlights three or four mormon bloggers who attract millions, if not billions, of readers everyday... at least, that's what i gathered from the article. some of you may have seen this article when it came out earlier this month and began to read it thinking you would find mention of your favorite semi-professional blogger, the blogmaster. you should be so lucky... as should the article, but, sadly, neither of you are... so lucky, that is.

believe you me, i have scoured the article twice and am yet to find even an indirect reference to myself. for some, this notable omission from the article may give cause to revolt against and possibly even leave the church. some may just be saddened and further disillusioned with the biased nature of the industry of journalism. for me, as mentioned above, it's just an example of the sexist nature of the family blogosphere.

let me address each of these concerns in the order in which they were introduced:

first, please don't leave the church over this... mormon times is not part of the mormon canon of scripture and, as such, should not be leaned on for spiritual guidance.

second, unfortunately the media is biased and there is not much that can be done about this. denying this is like saying fox news is objective. thing is, i had no idea the media had an agenda to keep me down.

third, let's not get out of hand here. take it easy, my friends. first, keep in mind that this article was specifically about women bloggers. which is something i am not. blogger, yes. woman, no. for the record, i have been accused of being part woman, or even a pretty boy at times, because i do stuff like blog, comb my hair, decorate, and buy clothes. no worries, i can take the ridicule. at least i can create the perception that i can take it. truth is, on the inside, i'm the most insecure narcissist you'll ever meet... it shouldn't come as a surprise that a guy who likes to blog has feelings, too.

my point is, that, yes, i did feel slighted at not getting a shout out from the folks at deseret news, but as celine dion sang in the theme thong for titanic, my love for blogging will go on. in fact, i am confident that the glass ceiling keeping the man blogger down can be shattered. i'll go so far as to say that one day a male family blogger will be sitting on the supreme court, or in the oval office, or, better yet, on oprah's couch. maybe it will be one of my boys... maybe one of yours. keep their dreams alive. don't ever let them think they aren't every bit as capable of creating and maintaining a family blog despite the fact that they can stand when they go to the bathroom.

in fact, as a demonstration of man's equal ability to blog, or as i like to call it: our delicate masculine, i am going to blog about having seen the twilight saga: new moon the other night and let you be the judge as to whether i am up to the task of blogging right along with my counterpart opposite sex bloggers.

dear blog,

aim and i went to see the twilight saga: new moon the other night. i had been looking forward to it all week and, in anticipation, stopped eating two days before so i could fit into the new pair of true religion jeans i bought myself for Christmas and then wrapped up and labeled as being from aim. you're welcome, babe (for making your job of picking out the perfect Christmas gift for me easier).

i was so excited to see new moon that i texted aim constantly throughout the day on the hour reciting quotes from the book as if i were edward, and then jacob, just to see which one she responded to more favorably. based on who she chose is who i decided to cheer for that evening even though i knew bella would choose edward in the end since i've read the book like five times... this month.

so, we got to the movie and from the beginning scene with the old lady to the very end, i was enthralled with the cinematography, the dialogue, the soundtrack, and the cgi that so accurately portrayed jacob morphing into a werewolf that it was as if the computer geeks who put the computer animation together had lifted the very images i'd created in my mind right out of my head and placed them on the screen. it was beautiful and so realistic that i am now wondering if the guy who played jacob really is a werewolf.

i was so into it that i could literally feel bella's quandary: the juxtaposition of having to choose between the lesser of two perfections... how could she go wrong? alternatively, how could she get it right? it's like trying to divide by zero... and only chuck norris can do that, but he wasn't making a cameo appearane in sister meyer's latest installment of the twilight saga... you're on your own, bella. i felt so badly for her, i wanted text her and tell her everything would work out in breaking dawn, but then that might ruin eclipse... so, i guess i better keep my phone in my pocket.

aimee, on the other hand, kept cramping the experience by snickering during certain scenes. apparently, she has never had to offer the shirt off of her very back to dab someone's bleeding forehead. nor has she been beholden to the image of a pale white shirtless vampire with interesting chest hair growth patterns sprawled across his bosom and an airbrushed six pack like i have every night in my dreams. frankly, i think she had trouble grasping the struggle the director must have felt in trying to decide whether he was putting together a movie or a calvin klein/abercrombie & fitch commercial (i'm pretty sure his contract said "movie"). her loss.

in the end though, i have to admit, that i found myself feeling terribly bad for jacob but strangely inspired to maintain my fast and increase my weight lifting routines so that i could look more like him. that has to be what women want, and i'll do whatever it takes to look like the type of mythical, unrealistic man that women want... you know, the type that eats away at my self-esteem and self-image every day. in fact, i was so caught up in jacob, his image and his actions that i offered to remove my shirt after the movie ended so that aim could clean her hands of any popcorn butter that remained on them.

enough of that...

truth be told, i was slightly disappointed in the movie. the previews made it look as if there would be a lot more vampire werewolf fighting scenes... not so. it was actually kind of slow and uneventful. the soundtrack, though, was excelente. i loved the thom yorke song. i did feel bad for jacob in the end, but maybe bella's not into dudes who take their shirts off at the drop of a hat even though she seems to have forgotten to button her own shirt up by a couple of buttons in a few scenes. you'd think someone on the set would have pointed this out to her... hello, how embarrassing is that?

i know this is a long post, but you won't be hearing from me again until next decade. i'll stop now and leave you with some pics which will hopefully help you forget how long this post was and keep you coming back for more.

happy new year's.






Friday, December 25, 2009

happy Christmas from the cooper five


it's 8 am Christmas morning and i'm the only one awake in the house. how weird is that? i have been siting in bed for about 45 minutes waiting, thinking the kids would have been up by now... they've been on pins and needles for at least a month... but not this morning.

they haven't gotten to that point yet this morning where they slowly start to regain consciousness and all of a sudden, in a murky haze, realize it's Christmas morning and then awaken at a pace that's probably not healthy for one's mind. at that point, it's time to awaken the rest of the siblings and then the parents, who are usually still trying to sleep off the hangover of late night present wrapping and toy assembly from the night (or morning) before.

i guess the boys are a lot more patient than i give them credit for... i, on the other hand, am feeling very impatient. so impatient that i picked up twilight, which, by the way, has been a very slow read for me, in hopes that it might put me back to sleep... no such luck and no geeked up kids still. only one thing left to do, author a blog post to my zombie nation on Christmas morning. it's the least i can do to demonstrate to you, my loyal minions, that i, too, am loyal and dedicated to your wants and needs... because what better Christmas gift can i give you than a snarky blog post to start the day off right?

after all, the garbage trucks rumbling around outside signaled to me that the garbage men are still working on Christmas morning, and if they are, why can't i? i can. and i will.

speaking of garbage trucks, does anyone else's garbage men change up the garbage pick-up time on you at will? i swear our guys are playing games with us... messing with our minds. they lull me into this schedule of 10 am in the morning for a while to the point that i don't feel like i need to put out the trash the night before... plenty of time to take care of it before work. but, then i all of a sudden hear the indistinguishable rumblings of the big truck's motor, in the thick of a pleasant morning slumber and instantly realize i have about 5 seconds to get downstairs and out to the street before i'm stuck with the unpleasant unpleasantries found within the cylindrical walls of our garbage can for a few more days.

by then, it doesn't matter what i'm wearing or what my hair looks like, i dart out of bed and race down the stairs, open the garage door and hurriedly prance over the cold cement with a garbage can in hand just in time to greet clark county's finest with our waste... "top of the morning to you, gentlemen."

back to Christmas...

Christmas came especially fast this year. life has been frantic, as usual (i'll spare you the details). i generally enjoy the days leading up to Christmas as much, if not more, than the day itself. the overall general mood and feeling that permeates life this time of year is as close to euphoric as i think this world can get. lovely. then Christmas comes and it's gone for a year... i always feel the formation of a little hole in my soul as the 25th passes and day number 26 rolls around. thank goodness new years is right around the corner and helps chase that downer feeling down. is it just me?

yesterday was a hectic 24th, here are some highlights:

we handed out cookies to friends and neighbors until we ran out. if you didn't receive any it's not because we don't like you, it's for one of three reasons: we ran out, you weren't home and we knew it, or you weren't home and we left them on your doorstep but then went back a few hours later after we ran out to see if they were still there.... if they were, we reallocated the goods to another family that decided to stay in town (Christmas cookie rationing). true story, but not my idea (actually it was my idea, but i didn't think mrs. blogmaster would take me seriously. she did). hopefully you read this part of the post before mrs. blogamster makes me remove it.

after delivering cookies, we did some last minute Christmas shopping. i felt it incumbent upon myself to continue my tradition of purchasing Christmas pajamas for aimee and it was just as awkward this year, if not more so, than it was last year. if you haven't read last year's post on the matter, you should.

after wrapping up all the shopping, we headed to my parents for the traditional run of Christmas eve festivities which pretty much consist of everyone spending way too much time preparing food, the cooper clan inhaling more carbs than they should in about 20 minutes, and then everyone spending way too much time cleaning up the remains... all while we essentially have a contest to see who can talk the loudest and the most. it's a jolly good time.

aim made some really, really good garlic mashed potatoes. i made some homemade ice cream (nutella flavored with bananas). that was good, too, but, when i was making it, aim handed me some outdated sweetened condensed milk... i'll let outdated ingredients slide sometimes if they aren't too old; but, i have to draw the line when the date of expiration was in 2004.

my mom's relatively new annual tradition of getting everyone some new pajamas to change into continued on this year for about the fifth or sixth year straight. you never know what kind of pjs you'll be asked to year. for example, one year the guys got sugar daddy bottoms, which i never wore. but, lately the selections have been much more presentable. this year wasn't too bad for the guys, but the girls' pjs look like some kind of kung fu master concoction. see for yourself, this is what we are wearing in some of the pics.

we reenacted the nativity with the grandkids playing all the parts and my older brother jeff reading as the narrator. he does a great job enunciating and projecting his voice when reading... this is likely a result of jeff's living out his unfulfilled dream of being a sports broadcaster or because my parents gave us such a hard time about mumbling and enunciating while growing up that we have been scarred for life and feel like we have to go over the top a little whenever we're reading in public now. either way, i'm just glad he's willing to read.

***
if you'll recall, those three asterisks mean that time has past since the preceeding paragraph. this is true. since i last blogged that paragraph, the kids woke up and Christmas happened, hence, the inconsistency in the time space continuum within this post. no, the earth is not reverse rotating.


santa got aim an iphone. he got me a cashmere sweater for a sickeningly cheap price i'm told (for the record, i've never owned anything made from cashmere and i don't get what the big deal is.... yeah, it's soft, but so are certain types of toilet paper). santa, or aim, also got mrs. blogmaster this pink vest with rabbit fur. i've never seen a pink rabbit before (panther, yes... rabbit, no), but since the two of us have iphones now, not to mention a cashmere sweater and a pink rabbit fur vest, it's quite possible we are poised to become the most powerful couple in all of las vegas. watch out.

i also got lots of socks which means i am officially an old dad.

all in all, it was a grand Christmas. the boys were pleased with their presents (jameson commented that he was so happy, he could cry) and i'm not planning on exchanging anything i got... something i'm notorious for. in closing, merry Christmas to you and yours and here's to a prosperous new year!







Wednesday, December 16, 2009

just when i thought i was running out of things to post on, mrs. blogmaster has a warrant issued for her arrest

i'm a law abiding citizen. i've never been arrested or placed on probation or cited for civil disobedience... it's just the way i was raised. i respect the law and all its loopholes which is part of the reason why i went to law school. i married a woman who i thought to be a squeaky clean mormon girl from provo utah with the unspoken understanding that we could avoid things like living life on the run from the law, witness protection programs, and so on and so forth (i guess i was a little too trusting and naive). thus, you can imagine the mortification i experienced upon recently discovering a warrant had been issued for my wife's arrest.

turns out my wife's attorney failed her. that would be me, but i can only accept partial blame for mrs. blogmaster's fugitive status... i wasn't the one who rolled through the stop sign and was then told by the cop that "yeah, it really was that bad." i can't say much, though, seeing as how i got a ticket a couple of months a go for entering a right turn lane too early.

yeah, that's illegal, but i issue an open challenge to see if anyone can name a single person, fictional or real (it can even be 10th hand information), who has ever been cited for such a farce of a law. dude was in need of a gentle cleanse or something. so, yeah, we had a rough stretch there for a while with vehicles especially since in between tickets we experienced the joy of three flat tires and then the replacement of 2 out of the 4 tires on one of the cars.

here's what happened...

aim got a ticket. she subsequently retained my services as her attorney which would be an ethical violation were she anyone other than my wife since upon said retention i was all of a sudden sleeping with my client, an act which the prudes at the bar consider unethical (however, if she were anyone other than my wife i wouldn't be sleeping with her). luckily, in my case, i fall into one of those aforementioned loop holes as i am married to my client. you're allowed to sleep with your client provided you are married to him/her... no need to delve into abstinence during the term of the engagement.

seems like a good idea, right? free legal representation? unfortunately for aim, she married an estate planning lawyer that never goes to court. on the one hand, i dream of someday throwing down a "you can't handle the truth!" line in front of a captive jury hanging on my every word; but, until then fixing traffic tickets will have to do. thing is, i'd never fixed someone else's traffic ticket before... how hard can it be, tough?

it wasn't so bad when i fixed my ticket, but that's because it was mine. apparently, if i try to fix someone else's ticket i have to have some form filled out and actually go to the right place neither of which i had done upon appearing at the regional justice center on mrs. blogmaster's court date.

no big deal, i was assured by the lady behind the counter. you have ten days to take care of it, she said.

really, ma'am, even though it says her court date is today?

sure. you're fine.

so, i left thinking all was well but then called back later that day just to make sure i was ok when i all of a sudden started to get nervous about the whole court date thing. unfortunately, i called at 4:30 and had 26 callers in front of me. i think they made it to 15 before i got disconnected. i can't wait 'til these guys take over health care.

i figured i was safe, but then ten days came up this past monday and i figured i'd better tend to my client's legal matter in spite of the fact that she hadn't paid her retainer. consequently, i threw on a shirt and tie in anticipation of stepping into the hallowed halls of the court house and demanding that justice be served, but once i got to work i just decided to ask my legal assistant if her contact at the justice center could take care of it for me, or for my wife as it were.

as luck would have it, she could and this was the good news; however, upon sharing the good news with me my assistant mentioned kind of matter-of-factly as she walked away that aim should be careful to not go out that day or at least until things were corrected seeing as how there was a warrant out for her arrest.

what? really? how did that happen? apparently, you have to show up for court when there's a court date scheduled for you. apparently, the judge takes that kind of stuff seriously. apparently, you can get arrested for blowing the judge off. go figure. did i mention i'm an estate planning attorney?

all of a sudden, time was of the essence. first things first... i checked with our firm's malpractice carrier to make sure i was covered in the event mrs. blogmaster sued me.

next, i called mrs. blogmaster to share the good news and commenced a conversation i never imagined i'd have with my wife.

me: aim, how's it going?

aim: good.

me: good. well, remember that ticket i was going to take care of for you?

aim: yes.

me: well, i'm taking care of it and don't panic... but, a warrant's been issued for your arrest.

aim: are you serious?

me: yeah, your lawyer hosed you. but don't worry, just turn out the lights, lock the doors, lower the curtains, and hide under the bed until i get home. take a look outside. do you see an unmarked van? has it been out there all morning? you're probably under surveillance right now and swat team members are likely crawling all over the place as we speak.

did you hear that clicking sound when you picked up the phone? your toast, babe, but let's look at the bright side. doing some time on the inside will give you some mad street cred with all the other moms. plus, all the famous people have mug shots these days. this could make your walmart wall modeling career explode. keep your chin up... we'll visit you every weekend, i promise

alright, i embellish a little, but only a little. there was a warrant out for aim's arrest, but everything was taken care of, so john walsh won't be mentioning mrs. blogmaster's name on america's most wanted any time soon nor will she be featured running from our double-wide in her husband beater with bad boys playing in the background.

no orange jumpsuit for aim. no police chase in a white bronco down a california freeway. no, my friends, in a splendid display of justice in action, i was able to keep mrs. blogmaster out of the pen and on the streets... or at least my assitant's contact was able to do so. thanks, sandy.

moral of the story: don't ask me to get you out of a ticket.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

if you ever go paintballing, make sure you wear a cup (especially if you're a guy)!

as some of you may know, the blogmaster celebrated his 34th birthday on wednesday of this past week. that being the case, mrs. blogmaster decided to plan (or should i say conspire?) with a friend of mine to come up with an appropriate celebratory activity to commemorate the moment of my birth (more on that below). turns out the two of them came up with the idea of a group man date to bonehead (the friendly local indoor paintballing place). sounds fun, right?

disclaimer: i was not in charge of invitations, so if you are one my innumerable friends who did not receive an invite, i apologize. however, i'm afraid to ask mrs. blogmaster who all was invited for fear of learning who didn't come because i'll just assume you didn't have a good reason and take your absence personally. just kidding.... kind of.

back to paintballing:

i've never been paintballing before and even if i had it wouldn't have mattered because mrs. blogmaster didn't tell me what i was doing last night as i prepared for the evening's events. when i got home aim had laid out my cleats and some warm, but somewhat grungy clothes. i couldn't imagine why i'd be needing my cleats absent a football game which i was pretty sure wasn't happening, so i switched those out for some other shoes and then changed out some other items in the ensemble based on the caveat that i might ruin whatever i wear. all i knew is that whatever i was going to do was cold and dirty. interesting.

next thing i knew, i was waiting at the neighborhood park as a mini-van pulled up to aim and me with a group of guys i know who were all dressed similar to me (except one had camo gear on... he was prepared, but, of course, he knew). i was abruptly directed to get into the van while aim stayed behind and i was carried off into the night. by the way kurt, tell your mom thanks again for letting you borrow the mini-van.

eventually we get to bonehead and the guy in charge gives us the 5 minute run-down on paintballing, safety, and blah, blah, blah... let's do this. i put my mask on and then i put on the rest of my protective gear which consisted of nothing. i felt strangely vulnerable, but somewhat skeptical that being pegged by a paintball could hurt all that badly anyway, so i didn't care. at least i didn't until my friend, shane, who is fairly tough in his own right and had been paintballing before, assured me i would feel it. i started to get a little nervous, but i wasn't about to let the other troops see my fear in the face of imminent battle as it's just bad for morale.

a hellish chaos ensued...

the first couple of rounds were really fun, but that was when my team kept winning and i wasn't getting hit. next thing i knew we were out reloading and mike, the guy in camo who was most prepared having covered up pretty much every square inch of his body, got hit in the neck just under the back of his jaw bone... the one area he left exposed. that hurts. justin was bleeding, and even though only slightly; it was still blood which actually gave him some manly paintballing street cred. shane remarked that he thought he'd broken his finger after getting nailed there by a ball as it was up against the gun, but as the feeling came back to it several minutes later, he realized he was fine. how does this not sound fun?

then it was my turn. someone had the bright idea that we would go out there and do an every man for himself game. problem is that even with all the barriers on the field, given the number of people we had there was no way you could completely shield yourself from every other player. thus, for those who can't do the math, that spells inevitable vulnerability (don't you love mixing metaphors: math and then spelling, where's the parallelism?) as such, not only was it a harrowing moment when someone yelled go, it was the moment when achilles got nailed in his heel, except that it wasn't my heel (i'm achilles in that blatant allusion to the heroic and mostly invincible warrior)... it was a spot that's a lot more tender than my heel. a spot that's a lot closer to my lower mid-section than my foot and, man, did it sting.

my first thoughts were, ouch, that really hurts. then, why am i doing this? then, i guess it's decided: colston's the last kid and the cooper five can be etched in stone, now. then i doubled over in agony and slowly made my way off the field hoping i wouldn't catch an errant paintball to any other part of my body as i headed straight to the restroom to survey the damage. luckily, everything was still in tact, and after the pain dulled somewhat (it still hasn't completely gone away, although some of that might be my imagination as i re-create the incident for you, my zombies, on this, my blog... no, i take that back, it's real) i made my way back out to the reloading area to prepare for battle.

yes, i was wounded, but a mere flesh wound, albeit a mere flesh wound to the goods, wasn't going to tear down the esprit de corps i had forged with my comrades in arms and keep me from engaging the enemy who, incidentally, were also my friends. thing is, my brother, kendall, took one to the crotch, too. kind of odd that the only two people who got hit in that particular region of the body had the last name cooper, don't you think? I mean, i'm no conspiracy theorist, but i see a pattern here...

so, i persevered and from that moment on, the paintballing was still fun, but not quite as fun as i had suddenly become acutely aware of my mortality. you can understand my hesitancy then, when kurt suggested we have the guy running the place go hide each person's gun on the field so that we could simultaneously run for our lives in a maniacal effort to not be the last man standing when the music stopped and unleash the fury of a thousand suns on the less fortunate, or slower participants. in other words, it was another every man for himself war. i reluctantly agreed so as to not appear less than manly (as if maintaining a blog and reading twighlight hadn't taken care of that already) and, as a result, eased my way onto the field with everyone else as we sat there with our backs to the battlefield and hands against the wall awaiting the madness.

it was at least maddening. let me just say that if you are ever with a group of paintballers and you all kamikaze rush a field looking for a weapon to use against everyone else with the understanding that as soon as you or anyone else gets a weapon everyone else is free game whether or not they have a weapon, don't run directly behind another guy. if you don't heed my advice, don't be surprised or call foul when the guy immediately in front of you finds the one gun in your path and you are point blank in his cross hairs and said finder then unloads paintballs on your backside as you run away like a little coward. it's not a good feeling and i've got the welts to prove it... them's are the rules.

bottom line:

last night was a lot of fun. thanks be to mrs. blogmaster and kurt for planning and to everyone else who came. thank you to the hansons for offering the use of their house and to everyone who got together my favorite things (kathryn for the card, aim and elizabeth for all my favorites: hot fudge sundays, cheesecake, dove chocolates, whipped cream, hot chocolate... good stuff). i had a blast and really appreciated everyone taking some time out of their evening to celebrate my birthday.

as a result of the evening's activities, i am thinking of starting a foundation to spread awareness of wearing a cup while playing paintball. funny thing is, i wasn't the only one without a cup... everyone else who even knew what we were doing ahead of time didn't think to wear a cup, either... at least i had an excuse. they were lucky. yes, i am charitable, altruistic and all that other commendable stuff, but the real reason i'm heading up this cause is that i just don't want to see another brother's anticipated activities on the night of his birthday go from celebratory to celibatory all because of a careless paintball accident that could have been so easily prevented. think about it.

in closing, i am enlcosing a picture of me from my early years. we had a work office holiday party this week and one of the activities was a baby picture guessing game where everyone submitted a baby picture and everyone else tried to guess who was whom. turns out the pic below is the earliest pic my wife and mom could find of me. thing is, i'm like 4 years old in that pic.

do you mean to tell me that there is no photo evidence of me existing before the age of 4? this further supports my theory that i was never really born, but created... probably around the age of 4 given the pic. heck, for all i know i was created much later in life and childhood memories were simply input into my mind. how else do you explain the fact that my brother and i are both 34 right now and we're not twins? how else do you explain the fact that i pretty much look exactly the same today as i did 30 years ago? no, i do not have some elixir that preserves my boyish features and, yes, my pic was one of the two pics that everyone guessed with 100% accuracy at the office party. the other was the pic of the sole individual of african american descent in our office.

either way, you've got to appreciate the stylish blazer i'm donning. and at such a young age... the thought alone makes me smile, even if it is one of those half-baked closed mouth smiles i'm known for in all my pics.

lastly, happy birthday to me. live long and prosper.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

painting batman and a visit to the belly of the beast

i only posted three times last month. either inspiration has been running low or i was just too lazy... probably the latter. i sincerely apologize as i know it is difficult to get through the month without sufficient cooper five fixes. i feel your pain, but maybe it's time you supplemented your cooper five addiction with some diet coke or nutella or something of the like. the last thing i want on my conscience is to head into the holiday season knowing i have let my zombies down. perhaps this will be a december to remember with a record number of posts... don't count on it; i said perhaps. let's just shoot for mediocrity and go from there.

on a side note, i'd like to thank you all for the feedback on the new look of the blog. most liked it with the exception of mrs. blogmaster who wasn't too happy with the photo i chose as the new banner pic for the site. i knew the minute i put the photo up she probably wouldn't like it, but i did it anyway. she thinks she looks fat in the picture... fat with an "f". i think she looks lovely and curvaceous with an "l" and a "c", respectively. i think aimee's, and most women's, default reaction to photos of themselves is that they look fat regardless of whether it's true or not (sometimes it is), so i don't put a lot of stock in such comments.

bottom line: the blog is staying as is for now... or at least until mrs. blogmaster demands that i take it down or i can talk alex into customizing the site for me.

i am batman

i used to paint a lot in high school and college. when i was a kid, i thought i might be the next walt disney. in college, i was an art major at one point. i think i'm more right brained than left and, as such, have a bit of a knack for all things creative. that being the case, i did what any creatively inclined right brain leaning person would do and got a degree in accounting and then went to law school.

here's the thing, once i finished college i put down the brushes in favor of a 10 key and never really picked them back up... that is until a couple of weeks ago when i was inspired by the work of a girl (i hope that doesn't sound sexist, but if i call her a lady or woman it just makes her sound old) i go to church with who has started painting again to satisfy her creative proclivities and make a little money on the side. i checked out here site and felt the urge to pick up the brushes. here's her blog: http://rebeccaannart.blogspot.com

i especially like this one with the girl and the hair: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_Mhspp2KLUkU/Svru1ei1bfI/AAAAAAAAALM/3HIcyOqVoGg/s1600-h/Angela+Schuller+Gallery+1.JPG

after browsing through rebecca's work, i decided it was time to ease my way back into painting. and what better way to build up my painting confidence than by painting the batman mural on my boys' bedroom wall that i've been promising them i'd do for the past two years? and so i did. it took a little longer than i thought it would, but i thought it turned out pretty good. good enough to merit the posting of some pics of the mural on the blog and fish for some gratuitous compliments. i'm not above that. it's not completely done... it's missing a rope, and gotham in the back ground, but you get the idea.







the belly of the beast


the cooper five spent thanksgiving in utah. we had a splendid time with aim's family and the turkey and all. one benefit of being in provo this time of year is that it just so happens to be the time of year that a friendly little rivalry known as the holy war kicks off (byu vs. utah). as i have made abundantly clear in previous posts, the cooper five and all family members on both sides, including in-laws and pets, are all byu football fans. as many of you should also know, byu and utah are mortal enemies. once a year, the football teams of these two institutions of higher learning get together on the grid iron and duke it out for myriad reasons none the least of which is bragging rights for its alumni.

the importance of bragging rights and the concomitant worldly pride that comes along with a win by byu cannot be understated. i work right next to a ute fan. i once had to wear a utah t-shirt for a day after a byu loss (i still have a rash from that shirt). for these reasons, and many like unto them, i have gotten to the point where i almost don't even enjoy the game itself anymore... far too intense for a meek and humble lawyer like myself. from the minute the game starts until the moment i am assured that byu has wrapped up the "w" i shake and get hot flashes. i also probably say things i don't mean and entertain thoughts of actions i hopefully never carry out.

this wouldn't be so bad were byu a far superior team to utah year in and year out... but this ain't the seventies and eighties. and unfortunately for my lifespan, over the last ten years, eight of the games have been decided by a touchdown or less... and the two that weren't were blowouts by utah. thus, the aging process accelerates for a few hours one afternoon each november for me and i prematurely lose an hour or two off my life.

why do i do it you ask? because few things feel better than stayley scampering down the sideline after a pitch from doman for the game winner followed by a gilford interception or a beck to harline pass in the end zone of rice eccles after time has expired or a hall to collie 40 yard pass on a 4th and 18 to spark the game winning drive or a 25 yard td from hall to george in overtime. believe me, witnessing these moments (2 of which i was present for) is definitely worth missing out on the second half of my 90th year (that is, of course, unless the second half of my 90th year includes november and, thus, the byu utah game... in which case, i may need to rethink my position).

bottom line, the game this year was pretty much no different than in years past except that i was in salt lake city at the utah jazz's arena when i beheld the beauty of a byu overtime win. i had no idea just how anti-byu salt lake city was until i was right there in the belly of the beast. i won't go into detail, but i was surprised to see that the outcome of the game wasn't announced during the jazz game, nor was the final score shown on the arena's scoreboard. interesting.

i would expect this from individual fans, but not an institution. regardless, none of these dangerous obstacles prevented me from publicly enjoying byu's win. in fact, i belted out a victorious roar right there in the arena itself (3 or 4, actually) letting loose all the pent-up anxiety and frustration of a tense game without giving thought to my physical safety. i felt as untouchable as shadrack, meshack and abednego as they stood firmly in the fiery furnace or samuel the lamanite on the wall. aimee laughed at me, but she's the one who openly weeps at the games when byu wins... she has no room to talk (but, i'm seriously so proud of her). it felt good.

in fact, it felt so good that i got a little wild and crazy and enjoyed a celebratory diet coke during the jazz game. i figured the byu win deserved something a little edgier than the usual bottled water. aim had one, too... in fact, it was her idea. that's the kind of influence she has on me.

so, that's where we're at, my friends. i am refocused and reinvigorated, ready to deliver quality semi-professional blog posts for the remainder of the year. sit back and enjoy the rest of the holiday season.

iinitiate the blog

iinitiate the blog