BennyEast.Com/Blog The official blog of Kenny West


My Nat Geo Photo Contest Submission

Last night I submitted my photo entry to the Nat Geo Photo contest.  I basically had 2 or 3 months to do this and OF COURSE I waited to till the very last moment to submit my entry.  So at the zero hour I created my account and uploaded my photo and paid the 15 dollar submission fee.  It was cool to enter.  I want to try entering some songwriting contests as well for my music.  It was a little odd feeling to click the submit button... I was actually kind of nervous to submit my photo!  I almost backed out but decided to just go for it.  What the heck.  Why not?

Well, they made it on the site that you can link to it to share with people.  So what better opportunity to share than right here!

Real quick I'll just give a quick what the photo is...

The photo was taken when the Chili's down the street from where I live caught on fire in the middle of the night.  After hearing several sirens and see the lights through my blinds of a number of fire trucks go by I decided to get up out of bed and head to the window to check it out.  The whole street was all blocked off!  And not just any street it was Lancaster Ave (The main road through the whole town... although it's a pretty main road in general).  Initially when I saw the first truck parked and thought it would be cool to just photograph a fire truck, lights all on and the water hoses all out.  I wasn't expecting to get anywhere NEAR to even see the fire really.  So I took my camera just to see if I could ask the first police officer if I could take a picture.  But he let me go right in... and the same with all the fire fighters.  They all said go ahead and take as many photos as you like... just don't get too close to the fire to get hurt.  I thought I'd be gone 5 minutes and then right back to bed.  But, an hour or 2 or whatever later when the sun was just starting to come up, I was finally going to sleep!  I took about 300 pictures.

As far as I know no one was hurt in the fire.  I thought those men and women fighting it were real heroes and very brave and courageous people and they deserve infinite amount of thanks for what they do!

So anyways long story short they let everyone who wanted in close enough to actually even feel heat from the fire!  It was crazy.  I was using my telephoto lens.  So I was able to get a bunch of shots of the firefighters actually doing their job.  This photo just really stuck out to me.  I don't know there was something very interesting about it I guess.  So when I saw the nat geo contest a little while later I immediately knew I wanted to submit this exact picture.

OK, basically the rules for the Nat Geo Photo Contest said very little editing allowed... I decided to just not touch the photo at all and submit it as is.  So here is the photo I submitted.  It's unedited right out of the camera and was number 281 of the pictures I took.  Oh and I'll keep everyone posted if I win or place or get any kind of response or a runners up prize or anything...

I decided to title it after a lyric in my song Wish Upon A Hero and call it:

"The Heroes Inside Us All"


Well today I'm blogging on my lunch time.  It's about time for me to get back to work!

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Trying out a new church

So I've decided that I've only ever really gone to one church.  I went to the presby church down the street one morning a long while back and that was cool but it just didn't grab me as much as the Victory church.

So I still like the Victory church but I want to just see what other churches are like!  So I'm going to try a different church maybe even for a few weeks in a row to see how I like it.  Then I'll maybe try a few different ones in the area.  I'll have to do some more research but I think for now I've decided to try another one that's right nearby in Wayne.

So the church I'm going to check out is:

Church of the Savior -

I don't know a lot about it but I think I'm going to just go to the 11am service and see how it goes.  I think maybe the 11 will have a couple less people than the earlier times so maybe I can just quietly sit in the back.  Maybe try that for 2 or 3 weeks... unless I feel super uncomfy then I'll try a different one.  it took me a LONG time to get comfortable at Victory... but I just think I want to try new churches maybe there will be a new one that will fit even more than that one... who knows!  And if nothing really fits then I can always go back to Victory.  But for now I think I want to try new churches and just see how things go.

The 11am service doesn't allow me to sleep in... but it's ok I can always nap after if I feel the need to.

I think sometimes in life it can be good to step out of the comfort zone and trying new things.

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If I could be a cat instead of a human for a week I might consider it

So if I could trade places for a while with an animal or something... maybe just like a week...

I'd trade spots with a cat.  Well as long as the owner was good at taking care of me.  I mean that would just be sweet.  I'd get fed and watered and have a place to do my business.

And then at the end of the day I'd have a nice warm bed with someone to curl up next to.

I don't know... I mean it would be pretty sweet.  I definitely need a nice big window with a warm sunny spot and a couch or something to sleep near during the day.  Maybe every now and then there would be a visitor or two and I could brush up against them and get them to pet me.

Ya know just act all cute and innocent... like hey I'm a cat here... pet me!

And then maybe every now and then I can chase around some string.... and maybe get one of those awesome little pet treats.

I mean is that NOT the life?  I think it pretty much is.

So yea let's just say I'm a little jealous of pet cats.  They got the life!

Sleep, eat, affection.  It's a pretty sweet deal.

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Happy turkey-day!

Soooo it's actually turkeyday eve.  But I wanted to go ahead and wish everyone a Happy Turkey Day!

I don't know why I just capitalized happy and turkey and day but that makes things more officially official.

Soooo now it's official!

Anywho I hope everyone has an awesome day and it's filled with joy and  love... and peace and all sorts of good things.


Turkey day AKA Thanksgiving is one of my most favorite holidays.  Soooo I'll be enjoying it for sure.  I'm going over to my moms house to hang out for the day and just relax and enjoy it.  So it should be just a good nice relaxing holiday.

The other plan on my way home or on the way over to her is to go check out a little condo that i'm going to be eventually looking at.  A condo!  I know, it's not a real house... but it's a step in the direction of owning my own place.

So I'm just going to have a quick drive by and see what it looks like.  I saw pictures but you can't really get a feel unless it's in person.  Then I'll go have a real look at it with the realtor if I like it.

That sounds a little creepy of me... but I'm just having a quick look at the area around the condo.  Not really the condo itself.  I mean I might look in that direction for a quick moment but I just want to get a feel for the neighborhood and all that to see if I get a good feeling about it.

Then I plan to just come home and relax and work on creative stuff.  Mostly music.... and edit photos from the shoot on Sunday.  So I can get those done.


I might do some chores too... maybe vacuum or clean.

Tonight I did a whole mess load of dishes that were piling up.

Soooo yea that's the plan for tomorrow!

So I hope everyone else has a spectacular holiday as well!

I give sooooooo much thanks to just so many things.  What does everyone else give thanks for?  Well it's time for me to get to sleep.  I've been kinda falling asleep and waking back up and falling asleep anyways already.  So might as well stop trying to fight it and try to stay awake and just go ahead and turn in for the night.  Night everyone!

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There are many important things that most people never know even exist

I'm a bit tired so I'm gonna make this post a shorti one.

So at work we constantly have to fix things and it's just a never ending on going battle against technology (or maybe it's a battle for technology).  Just when we think we've got it all fixed and good and we sit down and say ok... ALLLLLLLL FIIIIIIXED... what's next?


Something else breaks.  It's just that things are SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO complex that there's sooooo much happening at any given moment that any one thing even the smallest thing can have a cascading effect and then it can break other things.


So yea it's always on going and always super whoa.

But the thing is the students/staff/faculty really don't have any idea what's going on behind the scenes.  They just kinda go... "Oh, well I mean if it stops working, I call or email helpdesk and then it works again."

Stops works... call helpdesk... works again.

But there's a lot missing from that equation... where we do all this stuff that they don't see or know about to fix the problem.  But we know about it... and I mean that's the beauty of it... they don't have to know anything about it.  They can do their job and focus on the stuff they do and we take care of the techy stuffs.

But it does make me appreciate how many things in other systems or industries that I don't even know.

Like lets take for example any of the items in my kitchen.  I mean, I LOVE food... and I love coffee and tea and every now and then I like to relax with a nice beer or a glass of wine with dinner and put something on netflix...

But most of the time I don't think about hey where did all the ingredients come from for this?  I mean I had an awesome greek pizza last night at California Pizza Kitchen.  I took my mom there for her Birthday and it had ALL kinds of crazy things on it.

All I know is the waitress came out... asked what we wanted... I gave my order from the menu... then a little bit of time passes... and...

WOW... there's my pizza... HOT and FRESH and mmmmmm mmmmm mmmmm sooooo good.  I never really think about all that went into getting that pizza to my plate.  It's a lot to follow... not just cooking but the raw ingredients that came in on trucks, and someone had to build the trucks and pump gas into those trucks to make em go!  And someone had to drive em...

and people had to pack up the trucks and they had to gather up off of farms all the stuff on the pizza.  Like the olives on it probably came from maybe Italy... or something where in the Mediterranean.  So there were boats and things too.

Also there's the whole idea of owing what we have now to history.

I mean stoves weren't invented yesterday.  They have been refined over a LONG time to become what they are today!  And...

I could go on for a long time with this.  But the point is... sometimes I forget to stop and think and appreciate it all and be thankful and be humbled by it all.  I think you know what I'm getting at.

Maybe we should say grace not just before meals... but before we fill up our cars with gas... and maybe before someone from helpdesk fixes someone's computer?  Well... I don't know... but I mean... I'm going to try and at least keep in the back of my mind just how many things I really rely on in the world that rely on efforts of other people around me.

Like... the words I'm using to type this post.  It's kind of magnificent... brains speaking language.... understanding it...

I left that out of my restaurant scenario... the whole ordering food by communicating words... and conveying meaning.

I guess there's the whole paying for it at the end... so you have banking systems and financial transactions...

Hmmm ok my head hurts now.

But yea the point is... wow.  The world is a REALLY complex place!  So just try to appreciate it all and it's beauty.

Oh and... maaaaaaaaaaybe also... the next time computer stuff doesn't work for a short while.... ya know... maaaaaaaaybe give the IT dudes a break.


I mean, sometimes it takes a hot minute or five to figure out what's wrong and diagnose the issue and then get it back up and running.

Kinda shows just how much we really rely on all this tech stuff!  We really do don't we?

Okeys, well it's bed time for me!  I should try blogging during the day.  Apparently I'm a nocturnal blogger or something.

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Sometimes I come up with things that make my life easier

I came up with this about a week ago.  OK, yea yea yea, I know someone else PROBABLY thought of this already.  But I had never seen it used.  The only thing I've seen before are the little cargo net things that come in "pricier" cars.  Well I drive a little cheapo bottom of the line automobile... it gets me from point A to B and back again and that's all I need.

So I don't have one of those fancy pants cargo nets.  But what I DO have is a little bit of creative smarts and a bungee cord!  Also I have two back seats that have head rests.

Soooooo as you can see from the pictures below I fixed up a problem I've been having.

What was the problem?  Well the problem was that my bags would always shift and spill on my drive home!  It was annoying.  I didn't even drive that fast or make very many twists or turns at all!  I'd go shopping and pack my backs up all nice and neat and then they will always NO MATTER WHAT spill out things into the back of my car.

Soooooo I decided enough was enough.  And I came up with a way to fasten them in place.  Here are two pictures... now I use re-useable cloth bags but it also works just fine with regular old plastic bags.  This idea came out of how I secure my folding bike in place when I put that in my trunk.  I use the same bungee cord to hold it upright and instead of letting it roll around from side to side.




So what I do is I thread the bungee cord through the handles of the bags.  Then I just hook up the cord to the head rests.  The bags stay nice and snug and in place and nothing ever spills out!

This makes me super happy.  It works like a charm EVERY time.  Soooo if you have the same type of setup... I'm sure that you can bungee your bags in place as well!

So that's secret number one to easier living.  I should start writing articles for readers digest or something!

Well, that's all I got for now.  So give it a try out and let me know how it go... or goes...

Night internets worlds!

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Foods that I like that also do more than just taste good!

I've been posting some serious blogs lately.  So here's a lighthearted one about foods that I like that also do more than just taste swell.

They do neat things for your health and such.  Or, supposedly they do.  I don't know if I feel any different after eating foods that are not healthy as opposed to foods that are.

Like I just ate a bowl of mint chocolate chip ice cream and I feel kinda fantastic.  I'm pretty sure that's probably not super healthy.  But it's good for the soul.  Soooooo that's all I care about at this very moment.  Just like all those hershey's kisses we have at work that I've been eating out of the giant tin of them that we were given make me feel just fine and dandy.

Ok, so... I've always found it interested the effects that certain foods are supposed to have on you.  Like Chamomile tea is supposed to make you all relaxed.  I enjoy chamomile tea.  Especially when it's mixed with something citrusy... always good.  Oranges and mangos and pears and such.  Yummmmmmm.

Then of course there's red wine... and olive oil.  Supposed to be heart healthy or something.

Blueberries are supposed to help with heart stuff too!  And they have fiber and such in them.  As well they are super high in antioxidants.  I'm blue daba de daba da... isn't that the song?

I enjoy them in my cereal every morning.  But I've been eating blueberries since before I knew that.  I don't know... I just think they are so darn tasty in cereal!

Let's see what else do I like that's got more going on.  Hmmm well green tea.  That's good and it's good for ya.  There's like a billion things that green tea does.

Then there's Banana's... I have one of those every day.  And almonds... I eat some of these as a snack every day... AND... avocado's.  I don't eat those every day but I DO love guacamole.  Chips are gauc always rock.

What do those foods do?  Well.... apppppparently they increase your sex drive.  Soooooo I mean... in theory.  I should be bow chicka bow wow when it comes to that department.  Driving sexy should be my thing after a little snackaroo of banana's almonds, and avocado's.  I guess I will keep that in mind the next time I'm going down that road... or something.


Let's seeeeeeeeeee well... the last one I know about that rocks your socks for helping out your body to do cool things is anything with heat.

Yep... feel the burn.

Hot peppers have all kinds of helpful benefits.

I LOVE spicy foods.  Hot hot hot.  I usually will sprinkle a little cayenne pepper on things.  Tonight I made a little burrito/taco thing... and I put some spice in it.  It was good.

So what does the hot stuff do?

Well... here's the official source on really important knowledge of things that we should be up on and know about...

Oprah's website.

That's a list of the health benefits of Capsaicin which is the chemical in hot peppers that causes the "I'm on fire" feeling.

One of the cool things I didn't know it helps with is headaches... That's kinda neat!


"Headache help: Substance P is the key transmitter of pain to the brain. In fact, Substance P is the body's main mechanism for producing swelling and pain throughout the trigeminal nerve, which runs through the head, temple and sinus cavity. When the nerve fibers come in contact with Substance P, they react by swelling—an effect that yields headaches and sinus symptoms. Clinical studies have shown that capsaicin, a compound in hot peppers, is extremely effective for relieving and preventing cluster headaches, migraine headaches and sinus headaches."


Apparently Substance P is the key.  You just talk to Master P and P Diddy about that.  They'll school you on all things related to P.

So as you can see it really kicks some butt in the good for you department!  As long as you can get past the fire feeling.

It's taken me some training... but I can handle some pretty hot dishes now!

There's probably lots of other things that are good for you that I eat... but those are just a couple.

Well... it's time for me to get some sleep.  I have work in the AM.

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Just stopped by to chat

At my job... most people come to us when  things go CRAZY.  Like Prince "Lets Go Crazy" type of crazy.

Usually too they are frantic and in a panic because they need help.

Then we try to sort things out and fix it up and figure out what went wrong and just get it all back to the upright normal position.

Sometimes I'll be helping and the person will actually figure it out on their own midway through.  That's kinda cool.  I love when I can teach someone something new and then they can use that going forward.  Sharing knowledge is always just neat.  Or.. what's that phrase?  Sharing is caring.  I'm pretty sure that applies to dessert or giant chocolate chip soft bake cookies.  But it could apply to knowledge!

Yep, and when the issue is all fixed then they are on their merry way and we're on our merry way to the next catastrophe.  Sometimes they are small, sometimes large... sometimes they aren't actually catastrophes... just questions or small problems.

It's cool though, I enjoy fixing and helping and just being there.  I mean, I'm trying to make the music thing happen.  But I also enjoy what I do now as well... so that's a plus.

It's weird because I get asked a lot "How did you get into this?"  And I always think about that and try to answer as best I can... but often they are more confused after I answer.

It just kind of happened!  I mean, it started even from the first time can remember touching a PC in 1st grade in the computer lab when I was a weeeee youngin.  Everyone else in the class was CONFUSED like whoa... and so then I was like oh... it's not that hard all you have to do is click here and here and there and there and there ya go.

And then they are like whoaaaaaaaaaaaaaa how did you do that?  And I'm just like... umm... I guess I just do it... I don't really know?  It just comes naturally.

Then throughout my schooling and friends and family whenever someone had a problem they would start asking me because I was pretty good at helping... and well... eventually it turned into what I'm doing now.

I can't help but think that I'm a helper at heart... like I always want to try and help.  I like to volunteer... or I like to try and help fix things for friends or family or just people I see when I see something and know the answer and know how to fix it...  But sometimes it's definitely tooooooo much.  So I learned that if people want or need help they'll come and ask!  Maybe just one offer is ok... but it's not good to offer and offer and offer and try SUPER hard... at least I'm pretty sure now that can actually be no good.  I think that I've learned, it's better to just kinda be chill and hang out and just be there.  And let people come to you if they want to.  Ya know?  Just be open and friendly and inviting and accommodating...  I'm trying to work on being more like that.

I think of it as, there was this one chinese resturant we used to go to ALLLLL the time when I was growing up... and the dude was like a ninja at filling up your water glass.  He would hover and wait and as soon as you took a sip and put it down he'd fill it back up.  Some times it was like WHOA where the heck did he come from I didn't even see him fill it!  I'm pretty sure he'd drop down from the ceiling and fill it sometimes.  He was always RIGHT there to fill at every second as soon as you drank from the cup!  Seriously... I mean... he was on the ball with his job water filler upper job.  That's for sure!  But maybe instead of ninja'ing in with water... just kinda be there on the sidelines and wait for a signal?  I guess?  I'm just kinda pondering here.

But, OK yea def at my job people know we're there and they come to us... and then we help and everything is all gravy (Well, most of the time.  Sometimes we can't fix things 100 percent, but we actually do fix things most of the time!).

But also.. every now and then... sometimes people are just there to chat.  Which is also cool.  I enjoy that.  Sometimes I feel like maaaaaaaaan all these people just always come to us when they want something!  But today we had a couple of people who just wanted to chat. and...

It was kinda like... I don't know... I just enjoy it.

But lately I've been thinking to myself... that's kinda how I should apply that to my life.  Just sorta be here and be casual and chill and if anyone needs anything they'll call and ask... but if they just want to chat they will just do that too! Because I ALWAYS super over analyze things sometimes and then I THINK things mean some things or other things when they might mean something else... ya know?  And I think that sometimes that can get me in trouble... like I think it's almost like assuming things on my part.

I don't know... I think it's possible to care too much.  So I def just want to say ya know hey here I am... but not be all like hey hey hey to someone I might care about... no matter HOW bad I want to.  And sometimes... like I miss people and care sooo much and I want to message and offer to do stuff... but I know it's better to just be here and be chill and be inviting and open and does that make sense?


So... I don't know... yea... I'm just here chill... just hanging out.  I'm always willing to lend out a helping hand or try to be there for anyone who needs it.  But I'm also just here to chat a few words if they only need that instead.  And then if they need to get back to what they were doing... then I can always let them do that and just be here again for when they need me.

Or, I think the thing to say would be... anything goes... and I'm just kinda here... kinda like I am when I'm at my desk at work.  Just here and if people need help they know where I'm at!

OK, I TOTALLY just said the same exact thing like 20 times in a row just in a bunch of different ways.

yep.  I don't know, I've just been wanting to say that for a while.

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Oh no, I have nowhere to go!

We've all been there.  Just add a little extra to the gas pedal.  Gotta speed up a LITTLE bit to make this yellow light.

I mean after all green means go, red means stop, and yellow means speed up to make the light!

Right?  Hmmm, maybe.  I don't think that's the correct way to drive but I guess, I mean I see it happen all the time.  And I've done it myself as well.  You just don't want to get stuck at that light!  But I try to stop more often at the light because who knows... maybe by you stopping at that light... it's changing the course of your path and eventually it will lead to something super superbly awesome in your life.

At least, I like to think that could be true.  Good things come to those who wait... at stop lights.

But yea I mean we all do that speed up to make a light thing... and it's funny because sometimes it actually gets us in odd situations in traffic.  Mostly because of the design of the intersection and the timing of the lights... and if we had just been patient and waited at the yellow/red light and then gone on the next change things would have been ok... but for some reason... it's just SOOOOOOO hard to do that!

Why is that?

Well... I guess I'm writing about this because there's a light where people do this a lot.  It's on my way to and from work.  It's where 476 and Lancaster ave meet.  But the south bound exit mainly.

What happens?

Well... there are two lights and by the timing of the light the second light usually turns before the first light.  This means that the cars sort of back up into the cross traffic of the first light.  So then you have cars stuck in front of the intersection where the other cars are trying to exit 476.

I'm sure this happens ALL over the world a lot.  If we had just not gone to try and make the light we wouldn't be sitting in the way of the other people!

But, it happens.

Well... I've been noticing something interesting about this one intersection.  For the most part... pretty much every intersection i've encountered where cars get stuck in the cross traffic when the light turns... people honk like CRAZY!  They honk and honk and make gestures with their hands and let out their road rage.

This seems to happen a lot in NYC.  If you even get an inch over the line of a stop spot well even the pedestrians will let you know.

The very first time I ever drove into NYC... I accidentally got stuck in a cross walk.  My car took a pounding from all the people trying to cross... they pounded with fists and purses and bags and umbrella's and I was about to cry.

I tried to say or signal to the people that I have nowhere to go!!!  It's just one of those situations where once you get into it you just say out loud "Oh no!  I have nowhere to go!"

I try to make them see that I"m so super sorry and it was a complete accident, but they just look at me with disdain and disgust and then I just...

Sat there and felt like crap.

...Then the light changed and I drove on.

It was semi traumatic.

I'm sure the same thing happens in other cities... I don't know... I just really remember that experience.  So now I try not to drive in NYC anymore.  Or well, any city.  I try to avoid city driving when possible.


So here's this intersection... and these cars get stuck in the way pretty much EVERY time I go through the intersection.  What i've noticed is something just odd... no one ever honks!  I don't know... it's kinda weird.  Even if someone is just plain in the way and that other person from the other direction can't get past them they just wait patiently.  It's just odd.  I mean it's a good odd.  I wish that more road behavior were like that.

I suppose what really makes an impact on me is that every time it happens I still find it so.... I guess uplifting?  I don't know.  It always makes me think.  Why aren't these people getting all upity about these people being in the way?  Do they empathize or sympathize with the other people?  Maybe they think to themselves well that could be me!

Then it makes me think... I wish we could all do that more often.  Try to say... well that could be me!  Maybe the situations are different... like for example when someone comes to us and they ask if they can have one of the old computers from the college...

We pretty much use the computers past their prime and then recycle the spare parts and then recycle again the components that are become scrap metal.  Some of the people say they don't own a computer at home...

My first thought is, how could someone LIVE without a computer!  How is that possible!

But, it is possible or they wouldn't be asking.  So I guess maybe for some reason people at this intersection just look at the other stuck people and say well... I can see how they got into that situation.

Maybe?  I don't know.  But, that was just my thought for today.

So the next time you are racing to catch a yellow light... just lay off the gas and tell yourself... There's a reason why I didn't get to this light as a green light.  So just stop and if it's spring time, enjoy the smell of... roses?  But well you get what I"m saying.

I mean hey, also not racing for yellow lights saves a little bit of gas too!  Sooooo that's real money in your pocket.

OK well, I'm off to sleep!

But here's one last thought.  Think about how much your life has been changed because of the combination of red/green/yellow lights you've come into.  Even 1 minute earlier or later... and your whole life could be completely different than it is now.

Think about the people you probably met or didn't meet because you arrived 1 minute earlier or later to your destination.

But, I think that how everything is right now... is how it's supposed to be anyways.  And it's maybe partially because of the sequence of stop lights that we hit when we did.

I'm probably wrong.  But it's one of the MANY MANY MAAAAAAANY things that I think about.  I think a lot.  Probably too much.  But it's ok.  It's just how I am.  I hope that kinda sorta maybe made sense.  If not I apologize.

Well night everyone!

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A busy weekend

This is a bit of a mash up blog.  I was going to post two separate posts about my weekend... but... I'm just combining it to one.

My weekend was pretty darn busy!  Most of my weekends lately seem to have been pretty super busy actually.  I'm REALLY looking forward to Thanksgiving break.  I have a lot of things on the creative side that I want to spend time working on.  So I'll be happy to get to spend some time working on all those things.

Sooooo I'm just going to run through my weekend real quick.  I already posted up that I got a hair cut.  Or as some people joke... multiple hairs cut.

Oh, got a haircut... looks like you got more than 1 hair cut... funny...  I'm sure you've heard someone say it at some point... anywho.... yea, I got my hair(s) cut.

But I also did 2 other notable things this weekend.  The first thing was that I played a show this past friday.  I'd played the same venue a short while ago and was asked to come back.  It was probably one of the best shows I've ever played.  There was a small but appreciative crowd.  I played the usual songs that I play but also debuted a live one that I've never played live before.  "Whatever It Takes" was played for the first time EVER live.

And it rocked.  I wasn't sure how it was going to go.  But for some reason something exploded on it at the end and I was putting all the emotion and energy I had and you could tell that everyone was kinda like whoa... WHERE'd that come from?!?!  That was intense.

I wish I had video'd it.  I KNOW I KNOW that's what EVERYONE says...

"I swear dude I saw bigfoot!  I just didn't have my camera turned on."

But honestly this was awesome.  I'll be playing that song again/more often.  The other thing that happened at the show was for the first time I had people come up to me to talk to me about me as a musician and one of the people there just told me straight up how it is, she was like you can tell that this is your heart and soul.  You can tell that you are 100 percent genuine in what you write and play and that you don't hold back.

I guess I was just kinda taken aback by that and so I sorta just kept saying thanks.

It means a TON to me to get feedback about what I play or write or anything creative.  Especially to be told I'm genuine.  That's kinda my biggest thing is trying to be true/authentic/genuine in what I do.  I don't know... I hate when I come off in anything like i'm not trying as hard as I can.  I know I'm not the best at pretty much everything I do.  I mean, there's nearly always someone better.  So even my best won't be as great as someone else doing just half effort.... But I try really hard at everything I do.  And I guess it just felt good to hear someone say that she really saw that.

Because most of the time we get compared to those who can do things easier than we can without much effort and it's 200 percent better than we could ever do.  And it's just tough.  It's really unfair.  I mean I know yes, life isn't fair.

But sometimes... it just feels good to have someone recognize at least for a moment that even though life isn't fair, they are going to disregard that.... and judge you not compared to anyone else but you, right then and there.


Why do we do that though?  Always look at others and then say I can't do ANY of that stuff, or don't have any of the stuff that someone else has.  And then we get down on ourselves!  It's hard to practice it and easier to say it...

But if you can... really try hard to remind yourself that it's ok to just be you and who you are at this moment and to be where you are and have the things you have and the abilities you have.

Actually... it's funny because tonight in our little starbucks meet up (which is now up to 7 people!)

Tonight we discussed the fact that Moses had a speech problem... which I never knew he did... and that he asked that someone else be sent in his place... but he was sent anyways.

Something to that effect.  I probably should look up the reference... but I'm kinda sleepy and just writing this out really quick before bed.  But I thought that was relevant.  Because that kinda goes with what I was thinking from the show on Friday.

Just that idea... that you can still be significant even if your best effort is someone else's half effort.

So yea.   That's what I wanted to say on that.

The second thing I did was that I took some event pictures for my mom and her camp reunion.  Like the pictures that I took for the golf outing these are just straight out of the camera unedited photos.

I like doing the editing part but both the the golf outing and for this reunion they didn't want fancy edits.  They just wanted regular pictures just like they are out of the camera.

I said ok and took them and that was that.  It was cool though, I got some grub out of it... Mmmmmmmm the way to my heart is through food...  Seriously though... I'll do pretty much anything for food.  Most of the people at work know this... We get like free cookies ALL the time as a thank you for fixing computery things.

So I took those photos and they were happy just to have someone to document it.

I should really post a blog on the whole significance of summer camps in my family.  It's something that's been in our family now for, like 3 generations.  My grandfather went to camp... my mom... and my siblings and I...

I'd LOVE to send my kids to camp.... but it's like whoa expensive.  I mean even for us the only way we went was because my mom worked at the camp.  So we got to go as campers since that was part of the deal in her salary.

Hmmm... but that's for another blog.

Next sunday I'm supposed to be doing band photos for my old boss for his folk dance band.  We're trying to find a good indoor place to take the photos.  But we're still not sure where to take these.  We still might try outside but I'm pretty sure it's going to be FREEEEEZING for sure.  That's really the kind of people photography I wanted to be doing... bands.  Music is my first love.  The whole photo thing is really just a hobby for me.  I'm trying to focus more on music.

I guess I just love anything and everything creative and so when it comes to creative interests i'm a bit ADD and I kinda like to try anything creative!

I still want to make those animations... and I'm going to try and work on the one that I half started over Thanksgiving so we'll see how that turns out.

OK, well it's sleep time for me!  So I'll leave you with a photo from the reunion.  They had all kinds of cool old school items siting out on tables and as well all kinds of black and white photo albums and some photos as far back as when the camp first started... which was I THINK like 1930's or 40's maybe?  But there were some pretty old school authentic items from back in the day....  It was interesting to see all those people kind of going back in time in their minds for a few hours.  Well...  so here's one of them...  This item is from the late 60's ish time period...


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