July 2005

Original article posted by Greg:

Comp and I spent most of today looking for gifts for his family for when he goes home in 2 weeks. He’s doing pretty well at keeping focused. Probably a happy/scary feeling all at the same time. Elder minson says it’s proabably like the feelings women have just before child birth.

I don’t know what to think about that. And have nothing to say about it.

I’m told that 3 of the Mormon tabernacle Choir cds are now on the billboard top 5 (classical). I don’t know why I mention it except that it was the last thing I read before leaving the apartment today.

Other items of news: Saw a kid get baptized with a swimming face-mask on last week. He has a fear of water. We convinced him the snorkel was a bad idea, but he brought it anyway, just in case.

I intended to write a great deal about hope today. Like how we all need hope, how we can find it, and how we can always have it. But then I realized I can’t really think of much to say about it. Except that I hope you always have it.

It’s hard to hope when you don’t know what to hope for. And it’s hard to know what to hope for when you don’t trust anybody. I remember a time in my life where I didn’t believe anybody was really happy – that everybody who said “I’m happy” was lying. My reasoning was simply that I was unhappy. I couldn’t understand how anybody could have happiness when my life was so bad. So I understand how it’s hard to believe or have hope in something you haven’t experienced. Or have forgotten through long disuse.

I hope you are happy every day. And I know you can be.

I guess that will do for hope today. In the days when loud rock music and headphones will be re-available to me, more ranting will be had on multiple topics for greater lengths of time.

I thought also, recently, about the difference between teaching and telling. And preaching and testifying. I thought of it because of rock stars.

A rock star gains popularity because he or she says “My life sucks” over and over again to music. Then people say “Hey, that’s me. I can relate. I grok your mouth music.” So they buy the album. Then the now popular rock star thinks, “Wow, I’m popular. I must be right.” so he or she starts preaching, telling people what to think. And usually loses popularity over time, or never reaches that same level again. That’s why sugar ray stays popular. He never tells anybody what to do. He just sings the same song over and over again.

Also he’s got rockin’ beat.

So when we, the few but loyal devotees of SMV, rant – we are dooming ourselves to lack of popularity except with those who share our perspective exactly. Which would be boring, except that people exactly like us rock. And rock hard.

But I think there must be a way to share opinion in a way that causes openness of mind. I wonder what it is.

Purple Toupee,
-Elder Hamblin


Original article posted by Greg:

This reminds me of the time I stood at the corner of Hollywood and Vine. I thought, “Oh. I’m at the corner of Hollywood and Vine. That’s famous or something. I don’t know why it’s famous. I just know it is. And now I’m here.” Then I looked around at the razorwire on top of the fences, and the dirty little chinese restaurant, and the bars on the windows and I thought, “They could have picked a better famous place.”

I have a few personally famous places. I mean, I have a few places that are special to me. Some because of who they were shared with, some because I just like them. Some are refuges. Most are inspirational to me. All have good memories attached. I know why they’re famous to me. And most are unknown except to a select few. I suspect only Rodney knows where all of my famous places are. And I’m fine with that.

There is a cabin in the mountains where I like to go and pretend to be an artistic or creative kind of person.

There is a crack in the cliffs that allows passage to the top of the mountain.

There is a restaurant with great bread and plenty of ranting space.

There is a road that leads to a place far away from here filled with better radio stations and more movie choices.

There is a coffee shop that does great sandwiches and hot chocolate.

There is a certain log with a branch that would not give in to repeated kickings.

There is a kind of music that makes for better writing.

There is a house where I and my friends have always been welcome.

Well, I’ve learned something about the nature of the world and of life recently. There is a scripture somewhere that says that all things must fail, (minus one, it goes on to say) and I’ve started understanding that recently.

Another refuge from the storm is gone. With time and decay, change in health and circumstance, everything must change. There was a place that I relied on for much strength and happiness now gone. Not because the place is gone, but because the person who was there has left.

It leads me to think 2 things. 1: we must always be progressing. Finding new things that are our famous places. Otherwise we will one day run out, and we’ll be left thinking “What ever happened to hollywood and vine?” 2: We must always try to find the unfailing refuge.

I didn’t know I would talk about all that, but I have, and I aint gonna take it back.

The work goes well here. We are teaching several families who are trying their best to be cool. I went on exchanges with elder Minson, who is a fan of The Tick, Space Invader Zim, and other healthy cartoons and the like. My companion is also a fan of The Tick, but has never heard of Space Invader Zim. Alas. I guess there are different levels of geek.

I am level 8 geek, with plus one to chunkiness.

Subliminal, in an unnoticable way,
-Elder Hamblin


Julia: Are there classes on car maintenance at BYU? Why do I ask? no reason, no reason.

Jodie: Julia says she’s my favorite sister. If true, you had better do something nice for me to be a contender. Like a care package.

Orginal comments:

Nickname: AnaNg
Re: Down with the YKK!
Speaking of care packages, did you get mine? it had a lego starship for when you needed to escape. Thinking and praying for you often (very often) and finding out really cool new stuff from the Spirit, Teah