My So Called Life - The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

Embrace life -- both the sweet days and the bitter...embrace the joy and the sadness...the successes and the defeats -- for all of these things, both good and bad, have made you who you are.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

The End of 2006 Approaches - Reflections On My First Full Year in Atlanta

Yes, another year is almost gone, my first full year in Atlanta, GA. I am sure that there are people out there that look back upon 2006 with warm feelings. I guess as the year draws to a close, there are many things that I can look back upon with fondness.

2006 brought me a great apartment in a great area of Atlanta. I live in Midtown, Atlanta. A very young, urban, exciting epicenter in the middle of Atlanta. Sometimes I think about my monthly rent and wonder why I pay to live at my current place. Then when I open up my balcony or walk to a side street cafe, or just take a walk through the streets and see everything around me, I realize that I am lucky to live where I do. 2006 was my first full year in Atlanta, GA, and I am absolutely in love with the city...its history and its culture and all that is has to offer. As with any city, there are ups and downs, but I am incredibly excited about the possibilities.

2006 brought me professional fulfillment beyond what I thought was possible. Something happened and changed at my job. Not only in my performance but in my relationships with my co-workers. Professionally, I improved beyond measure in my performance and won several distinctions. No matter what job you hold, workplace regognition always makes the daily toils less difficult to endure. I have worked harder this year than any in the past. Sometimes I felt like the Energizer Bunny. I just kept working and working and working and working. 2006 was quite possibly my best year professionally to date.

2006 brought me a great apartment in a great area of Atlanta. I live in Midtown, Atlanta. A very young, urban, exciting epicenter in the middle of Atlanta. Sometimes I think about my monthly rent and wonder why I pay to live at my current place. Then when I open up my balcony or walk to a side street cafe, or just take a walk through the streets and see everything around me, I realize that I am lucky to live where I do. 2006 was my first full year in Atlanta, GA, and I absolutely love this city.

2006 brought me to a more mature way of living...in terms of everything. Not only the place I live in, the car I drive, the way I organize my finances, the cleanlieness of my apartment, the workout regimen I set for myself, everything. For year after year, I kept wondering when will my life feel like the life of an adult instead of this hodge podge of things past. For the longest time, I felt as if I had just left college. Not anymore. I feel established, settled, and for the moment, slightly content with where I live, work, and play.

2006 brought a renewed interest in my spiritual walk. For those who do not know, my friend Sam and I met in college and were active beyond words in the church, the ministry, and the life of a christian college student. After graduation, I continued with my christian walk in Dallas, but as the years wore on, I slowly pulled back and eventually discontinued everything associated with the bible or church. My beliefs did not change, just the actions stopped. I was not a regular church goer in 2006 and that will not be a goal of mine in 2007, but the renewed interest that arose within me in 2006 is a refreshing call back to one of the most important times of my life.

In the next few days, I am sure I will post a list of things I would like to accomplish in 2007. I am not quite sure what I want the next year to look like, but I am sure it will hold good things. Each year holds good things...it is just up to us to look hard enough to find them amongst the struggles and hardships.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Christmas Eve By Candlelight - Me, Myself and I

Christmas Eve is here and another year has passed. This is my second Christmas here in Atlanta, and this one I am spending alone. I made myself cookies and poured a big ole glass of milk. I lit candles throughout my apartment and I have christmas music playing in the background.

Tonight is gonna be a nice, quiet night of introspection and peace.

I wish everyone out there the best of nights and the best of holidays!

Merry Christmas!

I Am Glad The Democrats Won Congress - But...


Ok...I am happy the Democrats took control of Congress. I believe the country will benefit from the checks and balances placed on the President, now that there can be some congressional oversight on his decisions. I have become more left leaning in the last few years but still reside near the middle on the political spectrum. George W. Bush has shaken...no...make that destroyed my confidence in the so called "compassionate conservatism" he espoused on his way to the White House...but with that said...

Let me initially say how disappointed I am in the choice the Democrats made in selecting Silvestre Reyes, Democrat from Texas, to chair the House Intelligence Committee. I believe that when selecting a chairman, one needs to select someone who has the knowledge and ability to weigh in on the issues facing our nation and the world. As everyone knows, in my ideas and discussion about politics I believe that you have to be fair in your evaluations and comments about both political parties...so here are my thoughts for you to ponder.

Let's begin back when George W. Bush was first running for president back in 2000. He was interviewed by Andy Hiller, a political reporter for WHDH-TV in Boston. Hiller asked Bush to name the leaders of Chechnya, Taiwan, India and Pakistan. Mr. Hiller wanted Bush to name the four leaders in these four hot spots. Bush did not know the leaders of Chechnya, India, or Pakistan and only answered partially to Taiwan, referring to the president as "Mr. Lee." The Democrats assailed Mr. Bush...attacked his ability to engage in foreign affairs and attacked his credentials to properly execute the office of President of the United States. I am not a fan of President Bush by any means but at that time, his political experience was limited to the Governorship of Texas...so of course his foreign affairs knowledge would also be limited. It is true that these areas were hot spots around the world, but the United States involvement at that time was strictly political, meaning there was no direct military involvement. I seriously doubt if most politicians could correctly answer those questions even today.

So why do I bring this up...well as I said the Democrats blasted Bush for not knowing this information. And yet...they have put Democratic Representative Reyes from Texas as the Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee.

***Rep. Reyes did not know what Hezbollah is***

Now I am sorry. I do not see this as the same situation as Bush back in 2000. Rep. Reyes has been a member of the Armed Services Committee, so his knowledge of foreign affairs should be a little better than Bush had in 2000. I mean there was a little 34 day war between Israel and Hezbollah that was blasted all over the U.S and International media during the summer. How in the hell does a sitting United States Representative on the Armed Services Committee not know what Hezbollah is? And just so you get the time frame correct, Rep. Reyes was asked about Hezbollah in early December by Jeff Stein from Congressional Quarterly so he had already known about the war that had occurred between Israel and Hezbollah in the summer. What is even worse is that in the interview, Rep. Reyes could not give any information on Hezbollah. He couldn't even identify them as a group from the Middle East. He just kept saying.."Uh, Uh" and cracking jokes about answering the questions in Spanish...whatever the that means. Jeff Stein said it best in his interview when he reminded Rep. Reyes that Hezbollah has killed thousands of Americans on U.S. soil and in the Middle East and has been front page news for a long time now.

***Is Al-Qaida is Made up of Sunni or Shiites***

Ok..yet again...how long has Al-Qaida been in the news. How long has the U.S. and International media been talking about, discussing, and debating over Al-Qaida, the Sunni Muslims, and the Shiite Muslims. Now I am sure the average American does not know which sect of Islam Al-Qaida is....but I do...and I think most Americans should be informed enough to know. And I think it is embarrassing when the incoming Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee does not know. I mean come on...who have we been fighting for the last 7 damn years...actually even longer than that...the battle with Al-Qaida can be seen back through multiple presidencies. Rep. Reyes stated that Al-Qaida was predominantly Shiite which is of course incorrect. As Jeff Steins wrote in his article, "Al-Qaeda is profoundly Sunni. If a Shiite showed up at an Al-Qaeda club house, they’d slice off his head and use it for a soccer ball. That’s because the extremist Sunnis who make up Al- Qaeda consider all Shiites to be heretics."

I agree with one more statement that Jeff Stein made in his article...he states:

"It’s been five years since these Muslim extremists flew hijacked airliners into the World Trade Center. Is it too much to ask that our intelligence overseers know who they are?"

With all that said, I am sure that Representative Reyes will no doubt learn the differences between the sects of Islam and their relationship to Al-Qaida. I hope that he becomes well versed in his role as Chairman and succeeds to help America and the World address the threat of terrorism.

Like I said...I am glad the Democrats won Congress, and I am ready for change, that is for sure...but....ya just never know what the future will hold....hopefully for Representative Reyes and other members of the House Intelligence Committee, the future will hold a crash course in Middle East History and Current Affairs....

Thursday, December 14, 2006

A Necessary Break - Taking Time To Heal

Hey Everyone,

Have some rough things goin on so I will need to take a break from blogging. I will be back after the new year....I miss you guys!

Merry Christmas!

Some Hearts - Those Damn Lucky Ones

Ok - after my last post I can tell you all LOVE Carrie Underwood - ha ha -

Nah for real I found this video of her performing live on Ellen and I was amazed at how well she sang live in this set...so enjoy

Friday, December 08, 2006

Not That I've Done This Before :-) - But Sometimes Don't You Feel Like Carrie

She Fuckin Rocks in this video!