24 September 2009

Kevlar makes better armour

Mistakes happen. They are part of life. My question to you is this: what do you do after your mistake? Do you use it to better yourself, help enlighten others or stay the same? I think that those are roughly the options you have.
To learn from a mistake, it can be small, medium or large. It doesn't have to be ground-breaking and earth-shattering to learn something. You can learn from even little mistakes and go "oh, I'll never do that again!" Or, your decision to never repeat something can occur after a lot of blood, sweat and tears and maybe someone getting upset and mad at you. I hope for the sake of argument, you have never made a mistake that big, but if you did, that you learned from it.
Staying the same and not moving on is often the easy choice. Learning can be more of a challenge. You can even learn from others mistakes, but that is harder to do. Many people have to go through the fire themselves in order to learn the lesson, or so they claim. I am one of those people who learn through doing, including mistakes. However, do some people use that as an excuse? They really, really, really want to do something that they know is wrong and everyone is telling them is wrong, but they just want to do it anyway because they know for the time being, it will be fun. They throw out this "I just need to see it's a mistake for myself and then I'll learn" line, but is it really an excuse to get away with something they know is wrong?
Borrowing a thought from a wonderful TV show, it's like smelling milk you know to be bad. Someone reaches into the fridge, smells the milk and gags, then turns around and holds it out to you, saying "here, smell this: it's awful!" Automatic response? You smell it of course. But why do we do that? We learn through doing.
Listen, even if you learn through doing, don't let that be your excuse to do something you know you shouldn't, I guess that's my bottom line. Listen to reason, listen to people who have gone before you and made the mistake before you. If someone advises you strongly against something and in your heart of hearts you know it's wrong, don't hide behind the "I have to learn for myself" shield because it's pretty thin and flimsy: you WILL get hurt, even if you don't feel it for awhile.

14 September 2009

for your consideration, I present to you: the light bulb

So I asked Jesse what I should write about in my update, and his response was "incandescent light bulbs." Rarely a dull moment with that guy. Here goes nothing!

Everyone knows what incandescent light bulb are: the little light bulbs that contain a little filament, first invented by Mr. Thomas Edison. Seeing as how these were the first light bulbs created and we're still using them today, they seem pretty reliable and like a good idea, right?

Wrong. According to our government, these little bulbs are a bad deal. Incandescent light bulbs, apparently, use too much power. Consider this: the power we enjoy in our homes to turn on the incandescent light is powered by the power plants which burns coal as the fuel. Burning coal releases Carbon Dioxide into the environment which is the big cause of the green house effect we experience in the world. Obviously. So, by banning the use of this type of light bulb, we are going to save the environment by going green. Splendid.

So let's now consider the alternative option: fluorescent light bulbs, also known as the little "spirly light bulbs" in my house. The claim is that these little guys save about 70-80 watts per bulb. Ok, I'm fine with this. Now, let's bring all the facts together. Incandescent bulbs, which apparently use too much power which apparently puts too much Carbon Dixoide into the environment which apparently is causing the global warming, are the bulbs being banned. Flourescent bulbs are going to be THE bulb to use in America because they last SO much longer. Oh, something to mention about the flourescent bulb, they contain mercury. Which is more dangerous and a much more real threat then global warming (in my opinion). And by the by, they don't work in the cold. Good luck lighting anything, New England and all you northern states. The only apparent plus to the flourescent bulb is the fact they look cooler. Alright, I'll give them a second: they do last awhile. However, it has been proven that the incandescent light bulb will last much, much longer if the bulb is placed on a dimmer switch (they burn out because the flip of the switch exerts so much power through the bulb that they burn out faster-- a dimmer switch allows for a slower exertion of power).

Why are we banning the incandescent light bulb? Because a couple other countries have done it and the tree huggers are concerned with too much power being used? I really wouldn't have a problem with these activist people, except I bet every single one of them use light bulbs too. Jesse told me that this particular gem of a bill was snuck through in the shadow of a bigger bill that our president passed. Bills that are covers for other little things that people want passed are a whole other rant though.

So by the year 2012, you won't be able to buy incandescent light bulbs. Because our government is controlling what kind of light bulbs we can buy. Light bulbs. Because they use up too much power. Something to think about..

09 September 2009

can I please have a neon sign? ok, thanks.

I sometimes believe that my life could make a good book, with a title like "Just Because You Think You Know Where You're Going Doesn't Mean That's Where You'll End Up." Obviously I'm still working on the title, but you get my point. If someone from the future had told me my freshman year of college that this is where I would be 4 years later, I probably would have laughed at whoever it was. Where I am now is nowhere close to where I thought I would be. I don't say that with regret at all..I honestly believe I am in a better place then I could have imagined, and I feel like I could say that about a lot of experiences I've had these past 4 years. I do also secretly wish that before Jesse and I had gotten married, he would have clued me in to what an interesting and excellent adventure our lives were going to be.

God has this pretty cool way of getting you where you need to be. Fortunately for those of us who don't take the simple nudge, He also operates in knocking you over the head, trial and error, and providing your life with a neon sign that says "AMBER GO THIS WAY!" or something with your name in the lights. The road He may set you on may have trials and hardships; you might get hurt; you might have an absolute blast and see nothing but blue skies and clear sailing. Regardless of how you get there, He will get you there and you will learn the lessons needed along the way. When I first moved to Arizona, I couldn't understand why I was here. Why did I need to be so far away from my comfortable home to start a new home out here? Why couldn't Jesse and I start married life somewhere else, closer to family? What a road the first 6 months out here was..looking back, I don't regret it. How could I? The things I learned, through the laughter and tears, have made me a better person. I was thrown into the world with pretty much no life experience which made me lean more heavily on the only person I had. Jesse and I had to figure so much out on our own or through helpful (sometimes not helpful at all) phone calls with our parents. I can honestly say now that we learned so much out here and we grew so much closer then I think we would have if we had stayed somewhere comfortable. Another lesson I've learned: if you're too comfortable where you are to learn what God has in store for you, He just might move you somewhere else. i.e. move you to the desert.

I wish I could offer everyone encouragement who is going through a rough time. All I can say is hold on: God could be in the middle of working something excellent out in your life that you just can't see. Keep your eyes open, He may be getting ready to light your very own neon sign and it will all make sense.