Thursday, February 17, 2005

It was a little over a year ago that I met a man named George (name changed). I met him in a bus depot in New Mexico on my way to visit Jenn in Colorado for Valentine’s Day. It was about 7am or so and I had just gotten off a bus that had taken me through a blizzard outside of Amarillo, TX. Needless to say being on a Greyhound Bus in a blizzard at 2am is not my idea of a good time, but it was worth it. Anyway…I sat down after walking around the bus depot for a while and a young looking Hispanic man sat down about 10 feet away from me. He looked like your average guy just waiting for a bus. After about 10 minutes or so of just sitting there (I was reading a book) he asked me if I knew which terminal the bus to Roswell was departing. I was unsure, but after looking around I noticed a board with the terminal numbers and departure times. I read him the one for Roswell. The bus for Roswell was not departing until late in the afternoon, so I joked with the man that he had a long time to wait. He said he did not mind because early that day he was released from prison, and he was going home to Roswell to see his fiancĂ© and kids. He seemed very excited to be going home, but he also was very reserved and humble. After a few minutes of silence, he struck up a conversation with me that lasted for a better part of an hour. I do not remember everything we talked about, but I do remember thinking to myself how a person like this, a hardworking person who obviously loved his family and the Lord could get sent to prison. He never told me why he went to prison, but he hinted enough that it was drug related. A few months before he was arrested he was laid off. I know Roswell was and is not experiencing an economic boom, so I could only imagine how tough it would be to have a family and get laid off in a small town. After talking for a while longer, I noticed that my bus was getting ready to leave. I left George with a pack of gum and some beef jerky (he commented on how long it had been since he had a piece of gum). As I said goodbye, I walked away a changed person. Rarely do I have the opportunity to meet “real people”. I spend my days with privileged. Sometimes I wonder if I can do this for the rest of my life.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Valentine’s Day

I am not big on Valentine’s Day, never have been. Fortunately, Jenn is not either, so it makes it easier for us. We have our special days of the year, and Valentine’s Day is not one of them. It is not a bad day, but it is way too commercialized. However, if you are so inclined to celebrate this day with big fanfare and what not, more power to you :-).

There are actually very few Valentine Days that I remember. However, the most memorable was when I was in 4th Grade. We had a huge food fight during our party, and in order to “calm us down” our teacher turned out the lights. Now, I understand this is a tactic that some teachers use to make kids quiet, but on that day it only encouraged us. I remember our teacher leaving the room to get the principal and the parents who volunteered for the day watched as we put a bucket of confetti over the door so that when our teacher re-entered the classroom she would get her beehive hairdo full of confetti. I remember that parents were not watching us with joy, or curiosity, rather they watched us with fear in their eyes. I am still unsure of how a group of 4th graders were able to instill fear into the hearts of adults, and that will forever be a question in my mind. To this day when I see the little sweetheart candies I remember loading up a plastic spoon with ice cream topped with the candies and aiming at the nearest person. I do not remember how the food fight ended, but I am sure it was more anti-climatic than I would recall. This is still the best memory I have from 4th grade and one of the best from my entire elementary school experience.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Freedom Lost

Even the very conservative former 2004 VP Candidate from the US Consitution Party sees the loss of liberty in the United States. Maybe those true Conservatives and Classic Liberals can join together with the Progressives and modern Liberals to fight against the threat of tyranny.

Check out Chuck Baldwin's Column "Freedoms Lost Under G.W. Bush" from The Baltimore Chronicle

Today it is snowing. This is the most snow I've seen since moving here to Arkansas. While it is only about 2-2.5 inches it is a wild wild world outside. It seems that no one is here on campus, the streets were fairly empty, all the local schools were closed (but not the university). Very crazy, very funny. I miss snow.