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Movin’ on Up…

Honestly, I couldn’t be any more proud… today, Jess was offered a full-time teaching position as a third grade teacher at her school. Jess has been working long and hard to obtain a full-time position after working two years as a half-time kindergarten teacher. And by-George, she deserves it. Jess is thrilled that she gets to stay at her elementary school, she absolutely loves her staff and she’s even more thrilled about the possibility of seeing some of her former kindergarten students as third graders in a couple of years.

I’m so proud of her achievements, she is just simply amazing.

Way to go Jess!

We’re Famous… if you squint

Apparently, in admist the huddled (and sweaty) masses of Sunday’s speech by Barack Obama in Portland, the Oregonian snapped a picture and placed it on the front page and in that picture are the pixelated faces of our group:

When Obama came to town

Having a hard time finding my money-maker in the crowd, here’s a close-up:

We're famous... if you squint

Pratt is obviously the easiest to make out, then there’s me, I look weird, kind of like a half-mastiff, half-ape, half-three-toed sloth.  Jess is very hard to see, we determined that is her hair standing next to me.  My mom is also hard to make out, not only was she obscured by the hordes of people, but she had her sweater (a sweater in 85 degree weather?!?) draped over her head the entire time.  I’m sure the sweater also made her look unusual, but rest assured, I’m sure the Secret Service had their binoculars on her the whole time.

…in the Isle of Wight, if it’s not too dear.

If you haven’t read the post below, you wouldn’t know that Jess and I are in Newfoundland, Canada. Currently, we’re in a little cottage in Trinity. Look it up.

In the blue tv screen light I drew a map of Canada

This post comes to you (yes, well-over due) from the back porch of the Park House Inn in St. Johns, Newfoundland. Jess and I flew in yesterday which was the end of prolonged ordeal.

Here’s the saga. We flew into Toronto after flying into Vancouver (not Washington) and started to try and change our next flight straight into Saint Johns instead of through Halifax, Nova Scotia. We stood in the line for “customer service” desk for an insurmountable amount of time, we finally make it to an staff member after at least two stood up and left for lunch. After begging and pleading and stirring in a few white lies, we had our boarding passes for the flight to Saint Johns that evening rather than wait for the Halifax flight to leave the following night. In celebration of our trouncing of Air Canada, we went to dinner. Since we were able to bypass staying at a two-hundred dollar a night hotel in Halifax, Jess and I found a nice restaurant and decided to spend that newfound extra cash at dinner. After dinner, with my half-drunk thirty-two ounce Molson beer in hand, I was enjoying myself. The airport was quiet…

…a little too quiet.

Jess and I notice that the airport gods that be were no longer making announcements. From our view from the patio of restaurant, we could see a bunch of yellow following many flights indicating they were delayed. Yet, we were resolute, we knew we had two and half hours until our flight and we thought that surely, our late flight would be safe.

See, that’s what hope does to people–it makes them believe that they will persevere, make it through, come out on top.

Hope is for fools.

As I gulped down the last of my gi-normous beer, we tipped the very kind waiter and went to check the boards. We followed the departure board alphabetically, down to Saint Johns. Our flight was marked cancelled… but in French… a nice touch. So the flight that we had fought for, the flight we prayed for, had been cancelled less than an hour after we had switched over. But, as the saying goes, misery loves company and we had an airport full of miserable company. Forty flights ranging from Montreal to London, all cancelled.

Back to the “customer service” desk. Another hour went by in line and we were finally with another staff member. Through a lot of complaining, they finally figured out that we were “Executive class” and told us that we could take the 12:15pm flight instead of the 8:45pm flight. Thankful for a crumb, we ran for a hotel room.

The next day, we arrived at the airport over three hours early… rightfully so, the airport was insanely mobbed. An hour and twenty minutes later, we made it through security, had breakfast and were happily waiting for our flight while reading our books.

An hour before the flight we were notified that the flight would be thirty minutes later than anticipated. That’s fine, we can roll with that. Then it became and hour late. Two and half hours late. Finally at three we boarded our plane. Thanks to the on and off lightning strikes, we continued to sit on our plane for two and half more hours, this was especially entertaining because while the entirety of passengers in the Toronto airport were sitting in the dank, cramped, seat-less airport… I was watching Annie Hall on the airplane, and then an episode of the Office and the Simpsons. When the glory of the electronic media wore off, I watched everyone else’s luggage sitting on the ramp, being soaked by the onslaught of rain because the ramp workers were legally restricted from going outside during lightning. See, this is why I carry on all of my luggage. After a couple hundred text messages between my dad and I, around five thirty we finally took off. Ironically, we arrived in Saint Johns only thirty minutes later than we were originally supposed to arrive throught the Halifax flight.

It was worth it, though, today started off with a great breakfast, then up to Signal Hill, then a great hike out at Cape Pine were we saw two moose and then later seals at a deserted beach.

Back in Saint Johns tonight we had a great dinner (best baked Halibut, ever) followed by cheese cake and white russians at another great pub. Then out onto the patio to have drinks while I update.

This isn’t to ignore the two screaming women across the park who are adamant that if girl number one can bring up what ever “stuff” that she wants to, then girl number 2 can bring up what ever “stuff” she wishes. Ah, I remember my first beer.

Well, since it’s officially July 1st, happy Canada Day.

Now the screaming has become far too high pitched, please, ladies, if you’re going to air out your issues in a vocal manner that can be heard across a large area, please, keep it within an audible range that is easily deciphered by the human ear.


I’ll light the fire, you put the flowers in the vase

I’ve recently come to the conclusions that despite the new job, graduation, planning and wedding, getting married, and a honeymoon–my life isn’t hectic enough. With that in mind, Jess and I had a lot of conversations about where we were going to be living next year. For the past two months we have been scouring newspapers and the internet for rental property, with nothing to show. What we often found was that the properties that we liked were going for about a grand (or more) a month for substandard homes.As I figured it, we could easily be paying a mortgage for that amount of money and thus began our search for a home to buy. After talking to many mortgage companies, a bunch of real estate agents, and looking at many different houses…

Jess and I put an offer on a house. We did this yesterday afternoon. It is a very cute, brand new home in Cottage Grove. Three bedroom, two full bath. I promise to put up pictures as soon as I can. This will effectively shorten my commute from a thirty minute drive to a ten minute bike ride.

Jess and I couldn’t be more excited. It will not only be nice to live together, but to be in a house where we can paint the walls and have a dog without someone making us pay for those privileges.

Hypothetically, the closing will take place before the wedding. More news to come, I’m sure.



say goodbye to the old buildings; never cared much for them anyway

A quick update from the field. It’s been almost a week here in woodburn, and most of that time has been spent being dreadfully sick. It just brings up flashbacks from the summer of ’03 (sorry to all of the Bryan Adams fans: not ’69). But I’ll spare you the detail.Things are going well, the car has a new bumper and a new muffler, obviously Christmas came early for this boy.

My plans for here on out is the typical holiday what-have-ya, then on the 28th, I’m going to head to Bend for a bit (weather permitting) to see Jess and pick out (hopefully) a caterer and photographer. Speaking of the wedding, I’ve already got the plane tickets for our trip back east.

Other than that, School (both meanings of school) starts up on the third, so I imagine for the next three to six months I’ll be an exhausted lump of my former self. Stay tuned, there’s lots of fun to be had.



If I’m well you can tell she’s been with me now

Excluding German 201, things are going good, well, relatively. I have now come to the conclusion (in my waning months of my senior year) that I have chosen the wrong major for myself, this isn’t to say that Philosophy isn’t super-fantastic, because it is, but it is not as super-fantastic Education or Special Education. Ironically, in the remaining three terms I have left at the University of Oregon I think i have found my calling, I’ve always been a late bloomer, so why does this surprise me? So as you may have guessed I am taking a Special Education (SPED) and an Education (ED) class and I and I feel as though I am extremely successful at them. I may be getting my second and third ‘A’s of my college career (also ironic, my first ‘A’ was achieved in the first term of my Freshman year.) I can easily understand the material, the reading is engaging (oh, and 14th century Jewish philosophy isn’t fun reading?) so I think i might have made a small mistake being a Philosophy major, I should have gone with my life long gut feeling of education. Any road….
So I’ve hurt myself again, while playing racquetball I went flying backwards into a wall, making for a spectacular pup on my back. To make a long and quite unspectacular story short, the doctors aren’t sure yet what I did to my ribs except that they hurt and that I needed strong pain killers. On the subject of pain killers, may i just say that as a person who doesn’t sleep well, these are a small little angles with Vicodin stamped on them. So needless to say the last couple of days I’ve been very well rested.
I’ve come to the conclusion that i enjoy living by myself, lets just put it this way: I can be the master of my own domain. My messes are my own and therefore i’m not as disgusted cleaning them up. I don’t think I was meant to live with people who I’m not particularly close to… There is just something wrong about cutting a tube of sausage and then leaving both the wrapper and the knife out on the counter all day, needless to say, it wasn’t my sausage. ick. If I try the path of good naturedness and understanding means I’m a good person right? Or a Schmuck?
Finally, its really nice to see two parts of your life fit together so well. I really enjoy seeing Jessica hanging around with my family. First, it was my sister came and stayed with me for a couple of days, we played mini golf, played video games (which i kicked her butt at Dance Dance Revolution), and had a somewhat impromptu parade. Jessica and Meagan seem to really enjoy each other’s company, especially when it comes to making fun of me, which is fine by me because it is a sign of respect or at least admiration… or so I’m told. And then when Jessica and I spent the day with my mom, it just feels like one big family… i wish my family liked me as much as they liked Jessica, but you’ve got to take what you can get. I don’t think i realized how important my family’s feelings about my girlfriend were until (I finally got a girlfriend) saw Jessica with everyone of my family members and how much they liked and adored her. Best chance I ever took.

all right, Vicodin is kicking in, time for bed.

…Misery loves a symphony…

Either I’ve been a busy boy or a lazy one either way here i am updating very far off of my every month watermark, oh well time is a precious commodity. Lets see, I guess the most significant things that have happened since my last update: new job, broken nose, still nowhere to live next year. I’ll start at the beginning, I got my Desk assistant job which in short means that i will be delivering mail, checking out movies, giving replacement keys… $6.50/hr here I come! Don’t get me wrong, my sarcasm doesn’t mean i don’t like the job, i do like it, this new position will be a much needed improvement over being an R.A. no longer will I be bent over the metaphorical R.A. lifestyle table. No late night lockouts, no “Chris, my roommate is dead” phone calls, or even “Chris, I didn’t mean to get caught by DPS with a suitcase full of drugs, will I get in big trouble” situations. By the way, “Props” to all of my residents who are currently reading this. So eventually i will be a D.A. next year which means a sturdy job to make car payments, yes, the person who didn’t get his permit until he was 17 and only got his license days before his 19th birthday will be getting a car, which if i can, will make it so i can live far far far away from any residence (DORMS! I’m rebelling!) halls. So that’s an improvement.

Second on the docket: my nose became broken, or cracked to be more accurate. While tickling a certain girlfriend’s feet, we’ll call her [G]essica (to protect the presumed innocent), I caught a right hook into my big nose… no, I wasn’t punched I was assaulted by a knee. I find this especially hilarious because for a week or two after [G]essica/Nose-gate as I called it I could make my nose make cool cracking and popping sounds. All of this mean a mean headache for a couple of days and about 4 visits to the Student Health Center where, incidentally, I was made fun of repeatedly and incessantly by nurses because my girlfriend successfully “Kicked my ass”. It was all a riot on my behalf, the doctor took it upon herself to prescribe pain killers and to stay away from [G]essica. All was good and funny until the tears came… tears of an ego being smashed into small emasculated pieces. No, but seriously folks I think it was a good thing, you know that they say “the couple that breaks bones together stays together”, oh what I’ll do for romance.
Finally, i’m still looking for someplace and someone to live with this summer AND next year, but I have some prospective roomies… both of which I am very hopefully for because both are very nice (clean) and cool (trustworthy) people. I just want out of the dorms… please.

Ps.- This website is the proud recipient of the “Sad Ty Seal of Approval,” mostly because Ty wanted to get on my webpage, but regardless it’s an award.

…but the hills of Iowa make me wish that I could

Happy belated New Year. The year we just saw out provided me with a wide view of everything, it seems much to massive to try to remember everything that I considered important at certain moments. Actually it seems very overwhelming, when did my life become so cluttered and full? Arg. What ever happened to the feeling of emotional freedom, now I see the ties to ever action of every person… I just want ties to a few people around me. Once again, arg… definitely arg.
My winter break was less than extraordinary, being pulled in between happiness, sadness, and anger; all of which ended up in a aura of confusion. There were very many times that I was very happy during break, but as it is, there was the opposite, the many times I felt sad and angry. The anger I won’t go into, but more importantly my sadness resided with Max. I’ve already emptied out on that subject, but it is still sad… which i think is a good sign.
My happiness, on the other hand, was due in part to four people: Mom, Dad, Meagan, and of course Jessica. My parents are my personal champions, nothing like a good fight with a University to bring the family together. We really stuck together and I believe that shows that we might be just as screwed up as any other family, but when the metaphorical feces hits the metaphorical fan nobody is more cohesive than the four of us. And Meagan, she has really surprised me; for a while now I thought young teenagers were devoid of any empathy or emotion beyond their own wants, but Meagan showed me that I was wrong. She actually told me that what was happening to me made her feel bad, out of all the people that told me same thing, it meant the most coming from her. She is well on her way to becoming a good person.
Jessica… She is truly my saving grace. The many hours I spent angry or sad she was still steadfast in making me feel better, she is good at that. I am sure if I did not have her companionship right now I would be an amazing ball of anger, sadness, and loneliness but she is definitely an anchor. Nothing made me feel better than visiting her for four days in Bend. I cannot convey how much I needed that, I didn’t know it myself but in retrospect it was a great therapy. I enjoyed helping out on her ranch, especially feeding the cattle. I got to ride in the back of a trailer and throw hay. Jessica and her mom took me on one of the best walks I will ever claim to have ever been on. Going on a walk is great in itself, but there is something about walking in snow that makes the moment have a hint of mysticism. Though heading back home was a very hard thing for me to do, as my bus pulled away from Jessica a voice in my head said “what are you doing, you idiot?” Up until then I’ve never had an urge to jump from a bus.

And finally, my happiness can also be contributed to Tolley, my family’s new dog. Half Mastiff half Newfoundland. This dog is and will be huge. His mother and father were 150 and 200 pounds respectively. He is a smart dog too, he’s picked up the skill of not peeing on the living room carpe

…a bad day is when I lie in bed and think of things that might have been

Well the leaves have turned color and are threatening to coat the sidewalks, around the corner is what every kid here waits for with anticipation… causing late nights of thinking, asking themselves I wonder how big they will be? What will I get? …Of course I am talking about finals. I am not sure if time speeds up as you grow older but it sure seems as though time is whipping past me, I don’t see that as a necessarily good thing. Does this increase as you get older? If so, when I am forty that will make my days feel like two and a half hours long. At least my meals will be close together. I was looking at my transcripts of my college career, I am amazed how close I am to being done with my undergraduate degree. That is almost scary, its more of a mixture of wonderment and nervousness.

It has been a while since I have updated this web page… I’ve been a busy boy, writing papers like a mad man but that’s ok by me, seeing as I have no actual midterms or finals. Some classes are still all right, others are still very very boring with questions that are half as long as the reading we have to do for the class. Arg. In light of my last comments, I have registered for Winter term classes, i am taking seventeen credits which is one credit short of a maximum load… it should keep me busy, but i seem to do well with classes when I really load them on; or at least that is what I am telling myself now while hoping I follow through later.
My hall is still good, a few problems here and there but all together still good. I went bowling with them Thursday night. Some of the worst games of bowling I have ever played. It is pretty sad when my series high is only 112. As a hall we’ve also gone hiking, watched movies, had little kids come trick-or-treating, it has been kind of fun.

Jessica is good. I like this girl. This picture (blurry due to the crappiness of my scanner) is of Jess was taken at Silver Creek Falls when she came and visited my parents with me up north. I showed her the wonderfulness that is Woodburn, yeah, wonderfulness… that’s it. Silver Creek Falls was fun, while in a tree I happened upon a salamander or a newt, i called him Dionysus (a greek god). Newt, salamander, or greek god, whatever it was it was very neat. Here’s the picture.

Other than newts and salamanders I am waiting for Winter break to come, I really haven’t spent more than two days at my parent’s place since Spring Break, so it will be nice to take some time away from campus. Hopefully while I am away from Eugene I will get to go to Astoria as well as Bend to visit Jessica. More news to come, of course.