The Power of Music

Fridays, I telework which means I often stream a Pandora station. Thanks to my brother, Thane, I have some new Jazz stations to enjoy.

But today, I felt like pulling out an old CD binder to see what I could find inside.

Don’t you love the mystery of putting on an old, recorded CD and finding out what songs are on it?

I found one called ‘Frosh Mix.’ I made it at some point during my freshman year at BYU and you know how it is with music: listening to certain songs can take you right back to a certain moment in your life.

It was a very random mix filled with MP3s downloaded from Napster. Oh yes, back in the pre-record-label-suing days when you filled up your download queue with songs every morning and then went to class.

Shannon let me use her PC that she rented from BYU to download the music. So many songs. And then we probably got on AOL’s IM client and chatted with all of the people in our BYU ward. I was submersed in the college world, something that I didn’t really do again until my senior year. This didn’t help with any sort of reasonable sleeping schedule, but since it was BYU, many of the activities were either study groups or ward activities. The BYU college world.

A few memories that popped in the ol’ head while I was listening to this CD:

  • Always keeping a gallon tub of vanilla ice cream in the freezer
  • Seeing the convertible that some college girl managed to drive into the small canal down the hill from our dorms (she was okay, physically)
  • Running up and down the bell tower stairs
  • All night cleaning marathons prior to monthly inspections
  • The Sunday afternoon fire in the dorm room next to ours—thank goodness for concrete walls keeping it from spreading
  • Midnight visiting teaching, last day of the month
  • The kissing wall
  • One of the boys who got drunk (not sure why he wanted to go to BYU) and flopped down two stories of bushes (he was okay, physically)
  • Everyone running outside to experience the first snowfall
  • Sitting under the tree on the hill watching people walk home from class
  • Sunday dinners with homemade rolls
  • Saturday morning American history study sessions / debates
  • Waiting in line at the testing center, for an hour or more
  • The teeny tiny closet I somehow fit all of my clothes in
  • A roommate who borrowed my car and somehow drove on the wrong side of the road (there was a median)
  • I only remember going out to dinner with friends twice: once to the Pizza Factory and another time to Los Hermanos
  • Getting in trouble with campus police for throwing snowballs
  • Trips up the canyon for campfires
  • Learning to juggle a golf ball with a golf club in my golf class
  • Hitting myself in the face with nunchuks in my karate class
  • Double cheeseburger with grilled onions from Scoreboard grill
  • Sleeping in the back row of a Physics class
  • Actually attending the Tuesday devotionals
  • Dressing up as the Spice Girls for the ward Halloween party

Oh man, we were just SO CRAZY at BYU. Living on the edge~!

And I loved it, honestly and in all its quirkiness. Great roommates, great ward, tough classes and that year, some of my best grades during undergraduate studies.

What songs do you have that take you back to some great memories?

Looking At The Stars

Stars are my favorite things about getting away from the city, whether it’s from a drive up the canyon, out camping, or staying at my parents’ cabin. Every single time, I am amazed by how many stars are up there.

Joanna was my young women’s camp director back in the day. She was an expert on the constellations and I loved it. Becca and I could point out two dozen constellations by the time we were Laurels, thanks to Joanna. I wish I still remembered them all. But I still remember some. Especially my favorite: Draco.

I remember driving home from Kansas with Shanny, back when we were maybe 20, and pulling over for the stars. It was a long drive home and we were so close: cruising around the twists and turns of Highway 6 after passing Price, UT sometime after dark. We opened the moon roof on the Volvo and could see at least a hundred stars through it. I kept looking up. Turns out, that’s not safe when I’m driving. And Highway 6 is such a safe road. Or one of the most dangerous in America.

So in order for both Shanny and I to continue living, I pulled over in an area where there was a very large shoulder.

We both got out of the car and stared up at the stars. Semis barreled past on the highway, about 50 feet away, and their headlights were annoying. But I could see Cygnus the Swan flying across the Milky Way. Stars everywhere.

Eventually, we got back in the car when our necks started to hurt and drove safely home.

One of these days, I’m going to relearn the constellations that I have forgotten. And learn even more.

When was the last time that you looked up at the stars? Could you see very many or were the city lights an obstruction? Was it cloudy or clear? Can you find constellations or just the Big Dipper?

And if there was one new star in the sky would you notice?

Even if it was a bright star? Maybe just a bit brighter than Jupiter?

Just one new star.

Who would notice?

And who would follow it?

From the Adventures of Teqwita and the Snow Princess

One of my favorite roommates (we have the BEST stories from our freshman year, honestly) and I drove out to Kansas back in 2000 for our roommate, Ruth’s wedding. We took my sweet little blue Volvo and took turns driving from Salt Lake, through Denver and on to Kansas City for the celebration. For some reason, along the way, we decided to write down little quotes of remarks in our conversation. Taken out of context, they seemed so funny to us. What do you think? Ah, to be young again…

  • It’s a confused body of water.
  • I’m tight with the seat belt man.
  • Ten seconds of fun!
  • OH wait, that’s not a lake; that’s a blue building.
  • Watch out for eagles.
  • We’re going to hit a bird; hold on!
  • …Sparky was a good cat…
  • Fruita is Teqwita’s twin sister.
  • It’s a ferret. I see three trains. Maybe a lizard?
  • Here we are in COLORFUL Colorado!
  • Here come three wee’s!
  • On our left we have a pirate…
  • Mack. One mile.
  • I think the bug’s gone.
  • Keep off the meridian.
  • Gusty winds likely.
  • What does that look like? Um, a golf cart?
  • What were you doing walking on the buggy windshield?!
  • WIPE IT!!
  • Wheat thin artwork.
  • Powderhorn’s my Indian name.

Hit a Cop, Have a Really Bad Day

Enter the CAPTION CONTEST now!

The Sciolist Cell Phone Pic of the Weeknot-™ is published each week with the intent to entice readers to comment. This is accomplished with a CONTEST! The winner will receive a blog nod in the following week’s post-what a TREMENDOUS prize. Entering is easy. Just click on Comment below, fill in the identification information requested and enter your caption for the above picture as your comment. You have until Larrie posts the following Wednesday’s pic to enter.

Ready… GO!*

Last Week’s Winner: Give it up for Shannon! Her comment made me laugh because the lady was so POLITE about showing up half naked. Back to Shanny… she’s one of the “Unspeakables” and we’re not talking about the Untouchables… TOTALLY different. We knew each other for many, many years and sadly did not turn it into a true friendship until our senior year of high school. That year, there was a whole group of us who got together to make a movie, hang out, go to a dance, and shower in our clothes. Turns out, that whole group had gone to the same schools for eons and yet, we hadn’t come together as a rambunctious group of friends until we were about to graduate. Seriously. So, I had to convince Shanny to be my roommate down at the B.Y. and the rest is history – a history of MIA cleaning buckets, ice cream pow wows and Backstreet Boys lip-syncing.

*And by GO!, I mean COMMENT!

Day 4: Is there anybody out there… like me?*

Today’s “Build a Better Blog” task required me to analyze a top blog in my niche.

My niche?

Is there any other blog in the world in my niche?

I was stumped.

So instead, I started scanning through my friends’ blogs. I heart my friends. I heart their blogs. These are some of them (in random order):

Mama’s Boys – Linds and I became friends our senior year of high school, but we went to school together since kindergarten. It’s sad that we missed out on all of those years of friendship we could have had, but we made up for it, possibly all in one weekend that involved squirt guns, walkie-talkies, cell phones, undercover gang patrol cops, and an accident.

Phabulous Phippens – Mine and Karen’s friendship came and went because she came and went moving to and from Utah and always back to the same school from elementary through high school. This included a short stint in a musical, getting in trouble with the typing teacher, and attempting to sing in choir first thing in the morning. When I have kids, I’ll expect to call her frequently for advice.

Shanny’s Life – Shannon and I also went to school together since kindergarten and became almost friends in high school, but REALLY became friends as roommates our freshman year in college. That happened because I leaned over in Calculus, senior year, and said, “Hey, I need a roommate and you’re going to BYU. What’s your social security number?” (I also follow her husband, Clark’s blog, Bethletard. It’s a good one.)

The M’s – Sabrina shares her blog with her husband-how cute are they? And again, she’s a friend who I went to school with since kindergarten, but didn’t really become buds until senior year. Are we noticing a theme yet? However, we do have some moments of connection prior to that, including hiding in a garage with baby quail (sometime in 3rd grade, perhaps), and having Calculus study sessions in my basement where we rewarded ourselves with playing some type of wrestling game on the N64 after.

my little adventures… – Meghan, Meghan, bo Beghan experienced the Larrie friendship curve. This is where it takes some time before she realizes my quirks are actually endearing and then decides that we should spend Valentine’s Day eating Thai food with our Korean friend and then bake mountains of chocolate chip cookies while listening to Outkast. Can you believe they allowed such unruly behavior at BYU? Thankfully, the friendship curve doesn’t seem to be a bell curve; no sloping down yet.

Scattered Starlight – English majors UNITE! Somehow, Katie and I never got to know each other during our tenure as English majors at BYU, but we became friends afterwards, thanks to my sister-in-law, her best friend, Genny. Now we get to connect in a myriad of ways, from reading each others’ blogs to twittering back and forth or posting on each others’ Facebook walls. Yep, we’re TIGHT.

v1.2 – “Kaakun” was in a BYU ward. I have no idea how we became friends because there are many, many holes in my memory from that year of school. However, I do remember him and Rachel playing the “state game,” his commentary during mine and my roommates’ ice skating finals, and drawing on his apartment window in the middle of the night. Since then, there have been Vegas weddings, broken beds, and vomiting at Crown Burger. Sweet, sweet memories.

Family blogs: life of laina – I’m so happy my brother married Laina, for many reasons, one of which is that she blogs and it’s consistent, unlike her husband, Thane, who recently started up again on his blog, My Separate from Wife’s Blog. Nobody else in my family really blogs so I adopted my sister-in-law, Tracy’s family: Aimee, internal conversations & ramblings of aimee heffernan; Scott, Vote of Die Blog; and Ryan, The Idealistic Investor.

Tiffanie – I am a fan of our story. We met briefly during the ’99-’00 school year when she visited my roommate from Kansas. Then, I ended up in that same roommate’s wedding party where her best friend from Kansas, Tiff, did not. Seemed odd and so I was hesitant to talk to Tiff because I was the bad guy in this situation. Then, many moons later, she moved to Salt Lake and we ended up in the same singles ward. I went up to her and said, “Are you from Olathe, Kansas?” Who’s heard of Olathe and who can pronounce it right? Me. That’s who. Oh-lay-thah.

Two of my roommates who weren’t actually roommates: Nichole-The Audrey show, and Leslie-The Collyafaces. We lived next door, but both apartments got along so well, we would have knocked down the wall that separated us if we could. Now, I just stalk them via their blogs where they post pics of their adorable little girls.

A Day in the Life of Clancy – I knew Clancy when I was younger, but she was always the big sister. Instead, I spent all of my time running around with her little sister, Lacy-climbing cherry trees, rollerblading down Harrison (from 1300 E to 1100 E), doing art projects and playing Nintendo. However, today, Clancy and I go rollerblading down Harrison. Wait. No, we don’t because she doesn’t even live in Utah. Instead, we just stalk each others’ blogs and hit up the jokes on FB chat. It’s a beautiful relationship.

Norton News – Amy and I rocked the basketball court (and sometimes the bench) in high school. I miss her motivational speeches tailored just to me and my emotional rollercoaster ride that was high school sports. Then, she motivated me through a summer of door-to-door sales by sending lengthy emails. Now, she’s got an adorable little family, house, life, etc. It’s fabulous.

View from the Bushes – Every time I read the title of his blog, I think of a peeping tom. However, Ross is not… as far as I know. He’s the former coworker who I initially judged by appearance (longer hair, scraggily beard) and then got over that and realized he was an English major turned geek with the sharpest wit in the department. He moved on to bigger, better things than our web dude at work and now I have to stalk him via his blog. And we have Facebook. Too bad I only got one date with his brother-he would have been a catch.

My sister blogs. Oh wait, no, no she doesn’t, otherwise I would have included it in the family section above. But once, her roommate tried to set up a blog for the two of them: Merphanie. That lasted long. The other roommate, Kasi keeps up the blogging on her own site: Kismet of Kas. Also, I follow Martha’s blog, MOSTLY MARTHA. I’m pretty sure we’re both Mrs.-Lake-trained writers.

I know-this list is getting very long. I skipped over some people because they haven’t blog very recently. (Or because I don’t want them to know that I read their blogs regularly, mwahaha.) The rest of the blogs that I follow are written by people that I do not know… AT ALL.

Here’s a quick list of SOME of those: almost literary, Normal Mormon Husbands, The Art of Over-Thinking, Why Mormon Girls Stay Single, Lifehacker, Mashable!, Seth’s Blog, etc.

Okay, I’m tired of adding hyperlinks so you’ll just have to guess what all the other blogs are that I follow. What blogs do you follow?

*When I started typing this subject line, I was singing in my head, Pink Floyd’s Is There Anybody Out There? There’s not much to sing, though. Basically, while writing the remainder of this awesome blog post, I was repeating over and over in my head, “Hello, hello, hello” fading out.

Laconic Answers

It’s time for everyone’s favorite weekly installment of Larrie’s imaginary therapy session with her very smart, very imaginary doctor. Game on.

DOC: Welcome, welcome.

LRE: Thank you, thank you.

DOC: Glad you could make it this week.

LRE: Ah, gee, thanks, doc. But really, I make it every week… for the sake of my loyal blog readers.

DOC: How many loyal readers do you have?

LRE: A handful.

DOC: Really?

LRE: Yeah; just cuz they don’t really comment doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

DOC: Okay; go ahead and keep telling yourself that.

LRE: I will; thank you very much.

DOC: So should we get to my list of questions that we never got to last week?

LRE: You have a list of questions?

DOC: Well, sort of. And I didn’t actually have them from last week, but thanks to Shanny, I have them now.

LRE: Oh, so you really didn’t put any time into it, but just swiped a list of questions from my buddy ol’ pal’s blog?

DOC: So?

LRE: Just so long as we know where you got them from.

DOC: Well, she said that any of the blogs linked to from her blog could do it and I was rather surprised that your blog was linked.

LRE: Why would you be surprised?

DOC: Because who would link to a blog like this?

LRE: The better question would be: WHO WOULDN’T?

DOC: Oh… right.

LRE: So do you want to discuss your borrowed list?

DOC: Yes, let’s.

LRE: Okay, I’m ready. Bring it.

DOC: All righty, dighty… the rule is that you have to give one word answers only.

LRE: Wow, seriously? You expect me to be laconic?

DOC: Exactly.

LRE: Do you realize who you’re talking to?

DOC: It’s all in your head, babe… it’ll be a good exercise for ya.

LRE: Right, sure. I’ll give it my bestest.

DOC: Ready? Okay… Where is your cell phone?

LRE: Desk.

DOC: This will be hard for you, what with the lack of including a verb with your subject on that one, eh?

LRE: Next?

DOC: Right, right… where is your significant other?

LRE: Gambling.

DOC: What?

LRE: Next?

DOC: Your hair color?

LRE: Rainbow.

DOC: You’re not supposed to lie.

LRE: Next?

DOC: Your mother?

LRE: Tidy.

DOC: Your father?

LRE: Punny.

DOC: I think you’re supposed to choose real words here, missy.

LRE: Next?

DOC: You’re doing well at being so laconic… Your favorite thing?

LRE: Soccer.

DOC: Your dream last night?

LRE: Fuzzy.

DOC: Wow, that’s unusual for you… right, next… Your dream/goal?

LRE: Retirement.

DOC: Ha… The room you’re in?

LRE: Cubicle.

DOC: Your hobby?

LRE: Blogging.

DOC: Your fear?

LRE: Debt.

DOC: Where do you want to be in 6 years?

LRE: Yard.

DOC: What you’re not?

LRE: Morningperson.

DOC: Hey, just because you say two words REAL FAST doesn’t make them one word.

LRE: Next?

DOC: One of your wish-list items?

LRE: London.

DOC: Where were you last night?

LRE: Soccer.

DOC: Where you grew up?

LRE: Utah.

DOC: The last thing you did?

LRE: Email.

DOC: What are you wearing?

LRE: Underwear.

DOC: Your TV?

LRE: Beautiful.

DOC: Your pet?

LRE: Beautiful.

DOC: Your computer?

LRE: Multiple.

DOC: Your mood?

LRE: Hungry.

DOC: Missing someone?

LRE: Megs.

DOC: Your car?

LRE: Tank.

DOC: Something you’re not wearing?

LRE: Earrings.

DOC: Favorite store?

LRE: Albertson’s.

DOC: Your summer?

LRE: Short.

DOC: Love someone?

LRE: Family.

DOC: Your favorite color?

LRE: Blue.

DOC: When is the last time you laughed?

LRE: Today.

DOC: Last time you cried?

LRE: Yesterday.

DOC: Really? You? Why?

LRE: Next?

DOC: That’s it; I’m done. Why’d you cry?

LRE: I’m really hungry… time for lunch.

How all the thievery at BYU began…

“Where’s the bucket?” ~Shanny

It was the good ol’ days: freshman year at BYU, and Shanny, and I (along with our four other roommates) were preparing for another cleaning inspection when low and behold, NO BUCKET! Who purloins a cleaning bucket? This FORCED us to filch a bucket from one of the men’s dorms across the street and probably started a chain reaction of pillaging and plundering of buckets throughout the dorms. AT BYU! *gasp*


All this time, you thought I only posted UNIQUE content on this blog. Well listen, internet. Sometimes, I like to take the easy route and copy a little here and there. (Like my list of 100, which was inspired by Stephanie Klein’s blog. I’m sorry to surprise you like this and destroy your perfectly painted picture of Larrie’s originality. Today, I am simply stealing from Shanny’s blog. This is my first “tag,” but it’s one that asks for comments and we all know that any true narcissist just wants to be reminded that she matters in the lives of so many online stalkers.

Here’s the tag:

1. Add a comment right here, right now, on my blog about ONE MEMORY that you and I had together. (I know, it might be SO difficult to keep it to just one, but I believe in you; you can do it.) It doesn’t matter if you’ve known me since the days I resided on 1700 East, or if you only know me through my incredibly hilarious online persona—just run with it.

2. Next, re-post this tag on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you.

Here’s the reward: if you leave a comment, I’ll assume you’re playing this little tag game, too, and visit your blog to leave a memory. If you don’t have a blog or don’t post it up, I’ll leave my response to you in my own comments here.

Ready? Set; go!