T is for Those Elephants

It basically caused a gigantic seismic wave, created a whole new culture of people that have come together to share their life stories and have a lot of fun. It is something that sparked an entire revolution. The 18 seconds  that changed the world forever. The one that basically “woke” the Internet up. The one that – Okay, I’ll just say it: today’s the tenth anniversary of the first ever video uploaded to YouTube, called ‘Me at the zoo’ and starring the co-founder of the site, Jawed Karim. Little did he know that he had just planted the first seed that would grow into the magnificent giant sequoia it is today. And today he’s probably sitting back in a comfortable chair in his luxurious home marveling at the thing, the Frankenstein, he helped create.

Enjoy this day now forever marked in history as YouTube day. Go back to the simpler times when it was mostly unedited, low resolution clips of people doing random things, before VEVO stepped in and basically told the site to grow the hell up, putting up their music videos that make that “Top Ten Most Viewed Videos” list look overrated.

It’s also the tenth anniversary of the second video uploaded to YouTube, and possibly the third and the fourth. Basically every video after this is going to celebrate its tenth anniversary either today, tomorrow or in the days to come. It’s like a glacial layer of ice is moving over everything now, forever freezing these first videos into history.

The second, less popular video:

Hey, it’s not that hard to start a company. Just grab a camera, stand in front of some elephants, say a few words, and you’re golden. If only it were that simple now…

April A to Z Challenge

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S is for Stream of Thoughts

I thought I’d name off an assortment of things on my mind today to make this fun.

So long, Steve

First, I have to give my sincere condolences to the late Steve Byrnes and his family. The NASCAR broadcaster and analyst died April 21 at the age of 56 after battling cancer for several months. I’ve been watching NASCAR races for over 10 years now and always remember him doing pit box reports or giving interviews with drivers and he always was a professional at his job, a real joy to watch. He will be deeply missed by his long-time wife, son, and family as well as the entire NASCAR nation.

Survivor

I absolutely love this show and it seems to never fail every season. The show is in its 30th season; I’ve been watching since season 7 in 2003 which was Pearl Islands. And wow, has it changed a lot! The world has changed a lot as well (no Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube back then). I’ve changed a lot. The season on right now, which is titled ‘Worlds Apart’, has been one twist and blindside after the other, leaving us quite surprised and stunned (s words!) after each shocker of an episode (Rodney!). And there’s a YouTube sensation on there right now named Will Sims, famous for this one video:

Pretty funny, but I can’t seem to find his official YouTube channel with anything else he’s ever done. This can’t simply be it.

Spaghetti

This stringy food is one of my favorites, especially eaten with crispy garlic bread or never ending breadsticks. But tonight, the sauce was definitely not the best, lacked the thickness and rich tomato taste I’ve come accustomed to, wasn’t really a sauce but more like a ground up meat slush. I’m not saying my mom’s a bad cook, but well, she’s not exactly Chef Ramsey either…

Struggles

It’s been quite a struggle to find work here in Jackson since any jobs fit for me are scarce (a dishwasher, I guess?), but I’m far from giving up. I really want to move out of state someday and look for work as a designer or computer technician, since I seem to know a lot about computers and technology in general.

Struck him out!

Baseball season is now in full swing (pardon the pun) and the first month has some interesting developments: Washington, the team high on expectations, is under performing at sub par .500 with newly acquired pitcher Max Schrezer. The season is far from over for them but they’ll have to not only look good on paper but also on the field if they’re going to run for a championship. The Chicago Cubs are above .500 for once and may have gotten the answer in Chris Bryant, a player with the potential to be a major star (watch out Trout!). The Giants are in last place, but of course this is their off year with it being odd numbered. The Red Sox have woken up again this year and are primed to be a potential playoff threat, leading their division. Meanwhile, my beloved Tigers have not missed a beat from last year and look poised to go for the division championship once again – if the Royals aren’t to stand in their way. But how much buzz does baseball get at this time of year with the predictable and obvious NBA playoffs in full riot? Not nearly enough to wake old snoring grandpa from his sleep, that is.

Save the earth

Earth Day 2015

Today is, or was, Earth Day, and it’s too bad I couldn’t really get out to do something special like planting a garden or some flowers with the weather being bad. But Google had a neat Doodle on their homepage that I took for a spin. I also found out I’m a Shrimp Mantis from their “What animal are you?” quiz. Whatever that is supposed to mean, I’m not sure.

And last but not least…

Selfie-stick

I looked up this the other day and apparently it is not an entirely new thing, having been around since at least the 90s. But it was around 2013 during the Miley Cyrus craze when these things really started taking off. And now they’re being banned at not only sporting events, but also at concerts, in museums, restaurants, and many other places that are tightly packed or have close encounters, since they can be used as a potential weapon, destroy things, and bother people. Could also double as a golf club or a barbecue pit roaster. I still want one though!

April A to Z Challenge

R is for Really Bad/Really Good

There are two sides to life, the bad and the good, and I feel like I get a dose of both everyday and April has been no exception. The bad can be either totally unforgiving or help to give you an insight into what you should change or improve on, while the good can sometimes be a layer of false hope, like the frosting on a cake, and once it ends you are sent crashing down and there doesn’t seem to be a safety net to catch you.

First the really bad for me:

April

I feel like it’s been a fairly lousy  month of blogging for me since April is the worst month since September last year in terms of overall stats (visitors, views, likes, comments), and I only started blogging on the 16th of that month. I can, however, contribute the major drop in stats due to this A to Z challenge I have been participating in, since many of my followers are not taking part in this and I may have alienated them. I can say for certain that I have struggled with this challenge right from the get-go and I feel like I’ve wasted almost a whole month doing this since I never officially signed up for it in the first place and just started it on a whim. Not having an overall theme to go by also made things difficult and it’s basically been a mess, a runaway train that I have not been able to steer back onto the tracks. Hopefully May will be a whole lot better, since I’ll be back on my regular posting ways again (the Daily Prompt, yeah!). I guess I’ll just use April as yet another learning experience in my burgeoning blogging life – to never start anything without having prepared for it in advance.

Detroit

hrh

My family took a short trip to the Motor City today to pick up tickets for a Tigers vs. Cubs game in June. Now, this little section of Detroit that includes Comerica Park and Ford Field is the lone bright spot of the city while the rest of it is basically a pitiful dump, an apocalyptic war zone. And it did not look so bad the last time we were there for a game in 2008. The city has gone to the dogs and it doesn’t look like they want it anymore either. The roads have all been torn up for construction and it only adds insult to injury when you don’t see a glimpse of greenery anywhere; it is literally a concrete jungle, or a concrete jungle that looks like a bomb has been dropped on it. Seriously, the place is utterly depressing and I can see why Detroit gets such a bad rep these days and why no one wants to live there (who would with the city being notorious for crime?). The mayor of Detroit should be ashamed for having the city get to the desolate state it’s in. This is an embarrassment not only for the people living there but also for the state of Michigan as well. For the first time today, I got to see more of the inner parts of the city as we drove through it to find a highway, and it just added to my assumption that this has to be the worst place to live in the United States. Graffiti, while highly artistic and imaginative, was all over the walls from one block of streets to the next and when we took a turn under a bridge on the left, it continued on alongside the most neglected parts of town. Even the entrance ramp to the expressway that led us out of this hell had big crater sized potholes, our car doing a couple skips and hops, hitting a bunch of bumps and divots before finally finding smooth ground. Detroit needs a major check up, stat!

My computer

First it was a couple of missing screws, then it was more and more frequent BSOD (blue screens of death) error messages popping up suddenly and mysteriously, restarting the computer right in the middle of something I was doing to my annoyance and frustration. Now the keyboard has gone dead in certain places like a paralyzed patient, forcing me to use my external roll up keyboard that is not very practical to say the least. I still have about one year left on my warranty and it is pretty much time to get my sick laptop to the doctor and get it the first class treatment it’s crying for now.

Now for the really good:

Casa Rodriguez Mexican restaurant

rea

Other than Los Tres Amigos, this has got to be the best Mexican restaurant I’ve been to in Michigan. The steak fajita tacos I received which included dollops of guacamole, sourcream, and tomatoes were a meal that even looked good enough for a picture. The homemade chips and salsa served before also made me appreciate this little local eatery in Jackson. Sure, the waitress was a bit snobbish (we didn’t leave her a tip) but I can’t really complain that much when the food was grade A. I wasn’t really that fond of the wet burrito meal my dad got since it looked like a sick soupy mixture of grease and salsa, but oh well. A little humor was on the side as we saw a man at another table who looked like the frontman from ZZ Top, with a long beard and black shades on – I wouldn’t be surprised if he had a motorcycle parked outside.

That’s my April so far, how’s your’s been?

April A to Z Challenge

Q is for Quadruple

Questions of the universe, they’ve quizzed our minds
Understanding nature’s perfect even
As much is contained within this pool divine
Drawing them can be fun, since it’s as easy as pie
Rollicking fun are cartoons, the four fingered discount guy
Ulysses S. Grant, he came and went on March 4
Proudly introducing Mac in the year of dystopia war
Love in four seasons, a rare green quartet
Embers reaching four feet high, haven’t gone North yet (besides the other three cardinal directions)

April A to Z Challenge

P is for Paradise

[DISE
“Paradise” by macbofisbil – 2006
Time to leave this town
This godforsaken town
And get away from it all
Live a life of dreams
Have my doors be way tall

My paradise would be halfway cross the world
Wearing faded cutoff jeans
I’d be sipping from a foggy glass of
Sweet pina colada
Crashing waves, birdie screams

My back in a chair
Feet in the hot sand
Nothing but blue sky
And the beat of a slow jam

No troubles, no worries
No job, no tasks
It’s the kind of moment
Only ones in a fairytale could ask

It’s the typical image of paradise
Most dream of, but are alluded
Since reality is still here
And money can’t be muted

There is however
A paradise not far
Resides in my mind
A fantasyland under stars
Where I can dream all day
Until the sun sets down
Until reality snaps me back to life
And I’m back in my little ordinary town

April A to Z Challenge

BATZAP by Doobster @ Mindful Digressions

O is for Optical

So our eyes are the main reason the world is like it is today, why the use of different shades of colors to convey different meanings matters so much, why attention to intricate detail is a big priority in the end, why photography, television, or movies even exist. Everything that was created or written down, every tall skyscraper erected, every movie produced or photo taken, every sports game ever played, is because we not only have a wonderful sense of vision but also the awareness and intelligence to use it in a way no other species has come remotely close to. Humans see the world as their own and have always had a mission to shape it in their minds desire. We’ve most likely been involved in the largest collaboration project ever, one that has spanned millions of years from the time man first learned to use tools – the project to shape planet Earth from its natural untouched state to a thriving ball of activity and creativity, and look how far we’ve come.

Our eyes collect so much data and world experiences over a lifetime that if you could somehow retrieve all of those pictures off our massive “hard drive” of a brain and load them onto a computer, you would probably fill its hard drive to its capacity in no time – and two terabytes is just not going to cut it.

Some of the best moments in my life witnessed with my own eyes:

  • Seeing everyone in my senior year, including me, finally reach the end of their long journey and graduate from high school.
  • Seeing myself graduating from college, receiving that degree.
  • Seeing my hands fumbling with that steering wheel, driving a car for the very first time.
  • Seeing the very first African American president, Barack Obama, elected in the United States in 2008.
  • Watching the Detroit Tigers storm to the World Series in 2006, getting in off of a Magglio Ordonez game winning home run, ending an era of struggles and embarrassment.

And the worst moments:

  • Watching the Tigers get clobbered in that 2006 series against St. Louis, 4 games to 1
  • 9/11
  • Boston Marathon Bombings
  • My second grandmother dying in 2003 (or seeing her struggle with cancer beforehand)
  • The acne years

And yet another acrostic poem keeping with the trend of previous posts:

Outlook beyond the world so vast
Prairies and fields, mountains and grass
Toward enlightenment, the vibrant of the soul
Ice storms rain down, crater sized hole
Counting off calendar years, eager for tomorrow
Asking now, not when
Lit a fire, warmed away sorrow

April A to Z Challenge

BATZAP by Doobster @ Mindful Digressions

N is for Nose

nose1 nose3

Don’t be a nosy Rosie. Keep your nose out other people’s business. Got your nose. Keep your nose to the grindstone.

These are just a couple of common sayings people have used that wordplay on our device of smell. Some interesting things about the grindstone saying: it apparently originated from millers putting their noses to a millstone or grindstone in order to check that the wheel used to grind cereal wasn’t overheating, but another origin theory is that putting your nose to a grindstone was a punishment of hard labor for workers, which is the general meaning for the saying today: keeping focused on your work.

The scents of things that worked my olfactory nerves today:

Glazed chicken in cranberry sauce
Peanut butter sandwich
Fish patties
Turkey stuffing
Crunchy almond cereal and milk
Confectioners candy

Acrostic poem:

New smells, mind excited
Olfactory itches, image brightens
Sweet scents of rose, foul odors of gas
Everything counts,  keep it to the grindstone and stay in class!

Who nose what I’ll have next for the letter O?

April A to Z Challenge

BATZAP by Doobster @ Mindful Digressions