Thursday, August 16, 2018

Attempted Homicide

The exciting news is that we have a date for our next Strangerville Live show. We'll be back at Church & State on Friday, September 14. And obviously we want every single one of you and your grandmas to come and support the storytellers. But the more important reason to come is to see if I accidentally kill Meg and her unborn child.

It all started when Church & State told us that something happened to their small stage and they don't have it anymore. The cause of the disappearance is still a mystery to me. But they said that if we wanted a stage, we better bring our own.

I asked Jolyn and Meg how many stages they had lying around the house and they had like 50 but all of them were being used that night so they didn't have any to spare. So I asked them if they even thought we needed a stage in the first place and both of them, in unison, screamed "WE WANT PEOPLE TO SEE OUR BEAUTY."

Then Jolyn was like "can't Matt just build us one?" And I was like "I OBJECT" because I'm a lawyer and that's how we talk all the time. And I told Jolyn that I don't need no man in my life to build things for me and I'm perfectly capable of building things on my own.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

White Coat Ceremony

Last week I attended something called "white coat ceremony." This is where 150 grown people are dressed by other grown people on a stage in front of a crowd of grown people.

The whole thing felt a little like a premature celebration of achievement. But it's apparently a big deal for medical students. Just before they start classes, they have this introductory event where they are bequeathed white coats that are perfectly tailored and stylish on the women but kind of look like boxy Walmart Halloween costumes on most of the men.

Skylar invited his parents, who flew to Salt Lake City, to attend the event. My parents went as well.

It was TWO HOURS long. It was kind of like a graduation. There was this whole procession thing where all of the new students walked in as the most dramatic music I have ever heard in my entire life played. Several school administrators and faculty stood on the stage and one-by-one took the podium to give speeches about how special and amazing all of these new students were.

If you've ever wondered why so many doctors have huge egos, you should go attend one white coat ceremony.

Then each person was called up, one at a time, so someone could help them put on a white coat. This took a full eternity.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

A Sweet Treat



Please check out today's Strangerville, which includes one of my favorite stories we have ever produced. More info at the bottom of this post.

*****

Matt had a party yesterday because his town had its summer festival and they were shooting off fireworks at the park just behind his house. He throws this party every summer because his backyard is a perfect vantage point for fireworks viewing. 

Matt decided to prepare a taco bar for the 20 or so guests that would be coming to the party.

Now, I wasn't born in a barn. Bob and Cathie taught me Jesus's's way, which is that one should never go to any party empty-handed. So I called Matt yesterday morning and asked him what he thought I should bring.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Pictures from my Phone & Weekly Distractions

Toward the end of my Europe trip a few weeks ago I got a text out of the blue from Matt that said, "sorry about your house."

This is a terrible thing to have someone say to you without any context whatsoever while you are thousands of miles away from home.

A few days and eleventy flights later, I walked into the place at 1:00 in the morning, wondering if the reason for Matt's apology would be readily apparent. It was. During the two weeks I was gone, Matt completely rearranged my entire house. He moved paintings and furniture. He hauled stuff from one room to another. He made a pile of lamps and other decorations that were to be discarded. He even bought some stuff and left me a bill.

How much do you have to hate someone's taste to show up and do something like that while they're on vacation?

Anyway, your Pictures & Distractions:

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Golf and Buses

Skylar started medical school yesterday while I went golfing.

I would have traded him places in a heartbeat.

And no, I'm not interested in going to medical school. I'm just even less interested in going golfing.

But I have to go once a year. Yes, "have to." Don't give me that whole song and dance about how we choose our own adventures. Once a year I am invited to a work function that requires me to go golfing and I'm not totally sure what would happen if I didn't go but I suspect at least prison is a possibility and look at this face it was not made for prison.

I could, you know, practice. Then maybe I wouldn't be terrible at it and then maybe I wouldn't hate it with a hot and fiery passion. But that would require me to golf more. And I don't know if you've picked up on this yet, but I hate golfing. Kind of a lot.

So instead of practicing, I show up to a golf course in God knows where at God knows what time when it's Satan knows what temperature to play exactly one game of golf each year.

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Woven Tarp Bags

A little while ago this thing, that's probably a drug front and is definitely run by the Utah Mafia called "The Beehive", was launched. Meg writes snarky content for it, and we are also running a weekly podcast through it called Hive Mind. In it, we complain about TV and movies. So if you've ever listened to Strangerville and thought, "I would like to hear even more of their thoughts on The Power Rangers," you are in luck.

Hive Mind is being produced under The Beehive's channel, so you can find it on any podcast app by searching for The Beehive and looking for Hive Mind episodes. You can also find Hive Mind here.

And in other news, after a few weeks of break, we are back with new episodes of Strangerville. Please enjoy the below, which includes a story from me about leaving Ukraine recently. For those who hate the sound of my voice, I've included the text of the story.




This time in Strangerville, Meg and Eli absolutely do not judge anyone for breastfeeding their adult children, and a grandmother nervously navigates the security area of an Eastern European airport.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Cringe

A few years ago I was talking to my childhood best friend Sam's dad because he had stopped by Bob and Cathie's house for some reason. This was right before I moved to Palau and he was asking me what my job was going to be like in that country.

We talked for a while. And the conversation naturally moved to what I would do after Palau. I was telling him about how I would likely look for a job in the Salt Lake area but I wasn't sure, exactly, and that I hoped to find a good job before my contract in Palau ended.

We talked about those plans to look for a job in Salt Lake City for a while. I had expressed worry about not being able to find work. And then he said, "well, do you have any good contacts that could help you?"

And I said the following:

"Um . . . actually I don't wear contacts. I mean, I have these glasses, but my prescription is super weak. I don't really need them. But I like wearing them because I think they make me look smart hahahaha. I don't think I could ever wear contacts. It would be hard for me to stick something into my eyes."

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Seatmates

The universe has required me to take on a substantially larger share of sitting next to not-the-best seatmates on flights.

I'm happy to do it. Sometimes. But not every time.

It's like a curse. I see the 100-pound sensible-looking elderly woman with a tidy purse board just before the 7 foot 2 man with 16 carry-ons and a half-eaten jumbo bag of corn nuts and I immediately know the latter is destined for the seat next to, which in coach basically translates to "on top of", me.

It's fine. Someone has to sit next to the excessive cougher or the complainer or the person who insists on a window seat despite needing to use the bathroom every 20 minutes.

But it would be nice to have a break from this every once in a while.

Last night I did not get the break.

I knew where they were headed the moment I saw them get onto the plane. It wasn't rocket science to figure it out. They were very late and there were few seats left. I was in an aisle seat on a row of three, and the middle and window seats were unoccupied.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

How I Nearly Started World War III

We booked the hotel because it advertised access to a "private beach." The beach ended up being more like a stone patio that dropped off into the Adriatic Sea. It was nice enough. A bit small. But Croatian coastal towns seem to be crowded this time of year, so any access to the waves is appreciated.

Skylar and I had wandered to the water in the early afternoon. The stone patio was big enough to contain about 50 lounge chairs, all huddled closely together.

We wandered past each, looking for one that had not yet been claimed. About half of the chairs had people sitting in them. The other half had been draped with towels, most of them hotel towels, like little flags claiming territory on the moon.

Not a single lounge chair was empty, so we eventually perched ourselves on top of an uncomfortable rock.

We baked there for 20 or so minutes. I continuously scanned the patio, hoping that someone would give up a seat. But the 25 people already sitting looked like they were about to start requesting that their mail be sent there. They weren't about to go anywhere.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Smizing in Slovenia

In Ljubljana Slovenia last night:

Skylar: Here, give me your phone so I can take a picture of you.

Eli: No. You're really bad at taking pictures of people.

Skylar: I'm VERY good at taking pictures of people.

Eli: You're not. You're good at a lot of things, but this is one of the things you're really bad at.

Skylar: How am I bad?

Eli: You do weird angles and you take the pictures when the person isn't ready and you don't notice that the picture is bad so you stop trying and you tell the person you "got some good ones" and I've been burned by you enough.

Skylar: These are all lies! Give me your phone now! I'm going to prove to you that I can do this.

Eli: Fine. Here.