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Random Thoughts for July 10, 2006

Bic Boys
When I was little, I used to be a bit frightened of the dudes from the Pep Boys logo. Their wicked grins and evil eyes always freaked me out a tad. For some reason, I thought that the dude on the Bic logo was somehow related to the Pep Boys, like they were the same company in some sort of way. Maybe they’re really just long-lost cousins or something.

Ethnic
Society’s abuse of the word “ethnic” makes me sad. For some reason, it seems like many people believe that if something is ethnic then it must be black. Being ethnic and being African are not the same, as there are plenty of other ethnicities out there. I wish someone would just stop the insanity.

Philanthropist
I tend to believe in the good nature of mankind, but I have yet to figure out what exactly “good” means. I guess it’s really a personal definition. When it comes to making decisions on a grand scale (which doesn’t really happen, but still) I tend to think about a situation as a whole, trying to determine the greatest benefit to the greatest amount of beneficiaries. I try to promote local and/or smaller organizations when they’re good but, more importantly, when they’re better.

Psilanthropist
Jesus was a cool dude. He was amicable, making him good at befriending those around him, and he was a jack of all trades - shephard, carpenter, doctor. I don’t think he was the son of god, though. I’m agnostic, so I don’t exactly have strong feelings about a higher being anyway, but I really don’t think that Jesus was the son of god any more than anyone else. Though I don’t believe he was divine, I think he was an extremely intelligent and gifted philanthropist and he makes a good role model as someone who lived his life firm in his beliefs, which is extremely admirable. There aren’t many people out there who can say the same.

My Dad

Dad and meMy dad and I have never had much of a relationship. Though I was born here in Portland, my mom left my dad and took me and my brother, Shawn, to Baltimore when I was 3. Shawn and I would see my dad a couple times a year until I was 15, when we moved back to Portland to live with my dad while my mom was going through some rough times. Though Shawn only stayed for a year before moving back to Baltimore, I ended up building my life here in the Portland area. It’s a great place with great people - I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.

I don’t have any regrets about staying in Portland, even though Shawn moved back to Baltimore. I know Portland; I can trust people here and walk down the street without feeling like I could get jumped at any minute. I don’t have that same sense of security in Baltimore.

My dad is my only blood relative in Portland. Even though we spent a couple Christmases with Debbie’s family (Debbie is my dad’s fiance), the few holidays we spent together still felt like they were missing something. However, I found a life and a family here in Portland when Christina and her family helped fill the void for the family I left behind in Baltimore.

I still miss my Baltimoron family, though. It was an awesome treat to go back there 2 years ago for Christmas and shock the hell out of everybody (the only one who knew we were coming was my grandma). I really wish I could see my mom, Shawn, and everybody else more often.

Despite my longing for my family, I haven’t had much of a reason to want to see my dad. He’s the only one who lives within reasonable driving distance, yet I had’t seen him in almost a year. That was until last Sunday - Father’s Day.

Mappy and Ground Kontrol

Mappy

When I was in elementary school in Baltimore, we had an in-school arcade called the PAL Center. It was an effort to keep kids off the streets after school. I loved it. Of course, Donkey Kong and Arkanoid were some of my favorites - they were everyone’s favorites - but the game that I loved the most was Mappy.

Sierra on Two Wheels

Sierra

We opted to remove Sierra’s training wheels from her bike today. She got pretty frustrated at first - in fact, on her very first run she fell and threw a fit so we had to take a time-out and eat dinner before giving it another go - but she finally started to get the hang of it. She’s actually pretty good once she gets going, but she had a hard time with pushing herself off initially to get the momentum to go. Then, once she started getting enough momentum, she couldn’t keep both feet on the pedals. She’s goofy, but I’m so proud of her.

This, for me, was truly one of those “passing the torch” kind of moments. I was about 5 or 6 when I started riding without training wheels. My aunt, Jacqueline, taught me. (I say that she’s the one who taught me because I seem to remember her being the last one to push me before I could go without falling.) Anyway, it just made me really happy to see her try so hard. She kept saying, “I know I can do this!” So cute. We’ll practice more tomorrow; I can’t wait to race her! :D

Sierra and Dean

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