Monday, February 18, 2008

Gold medal, and I love my DVR

Well, it took me about a year and 3 weeks - but my goal was to do it before my 39th birthday on March 8 and I made it! Woo-hoo!

For those of you who don't know, I've been working toward a Presidential fitness award. You log your workout points online and they accumulate toward a bronze (20,000 points), silver (40,000) or gold medal (80,000). I liked having the extra motivation to work out. Now that I'm done, though, I might need something else to motivate me to stick with it, especially through the rest of the winter.

Anyway - yahoo!

Unrelated subject: I really LOVE having a DVR. Buzz says it revolutionizes your TV watching and he is right. I am having fun watching shows I have heard about but never seen, like What Not to Wear. I recognize myself way too much in that one. A friend told me a couple years ago she wanted to nominate me for it, but I doubt I would ever do it. The whole new wardrobe would be nice though.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

awkward moment

So I'm standing at the voter sign-in table this morning at 7:15 a.m. when an acquaintance of mine comes in right behind me. He went to my alma mater, Wheaton College, and we've known him and his family on friendly terms for years here in Salt Lake. We used to go to the same church. He is a conservative Republican, politically active, and though we have rarely if ever discussed politics I think he's pretty darn committed to Republican ideals.

So in our state, if you're unaffiliated (as I am) the voter-sign-in dude has to ask you which ticket you want to vote on. So I answered "Democrat" right in front of my die-hard Republican acquaintance. It's not exactly an invasion of privacy, but it did make me uncomfortable. I am pretty moderate actually and have voted about equally Republican and Democrat in the past, but in the past few elections I've been swinging more to the Democratic side. These days, the war and the environment are on my mind as I approach the candidates. Every election year is different.

Oh well - in the grand scheme of things, I am extremely grateful that elections here are so calm and well-tempered, especially in light of what's happening in Kenya and what happens in a lot of the world around election time. I don't think our friendship with this guy and his family will change much because he knows I voted on the Democratic ticket - but all the same, I think the party affiliation rules in this state are kind of silly and annoying. Why can't we just cast a vote for whichever candidate we prefer, regardless of party?

Monday, February 4, 2008

voting, and why are the flags at half mast?

Tomorrow is our primary and I still don't know who I'm voting for.

This is a cry for help. I'm informationally-challenged when it comes to finding out the real scoop about the candidates. So for all you politically-savvy people out there, how do you get good information? I have tried random internet searching but it seems I just get a lot of opinionated propaganda and not much substance. I'd like to be an informed voter, but I'm pressed for time so I need an efficient good source of (hopefully relatively unbiased) information.

For this primary it may be too late, but I have confidence that the people of Utah will vote overwhelmingly for Mitt Romney so my vote will not count for much here. But I would still like to become better informed.

BTW, I will not be voting for Mitt. :-)

Second issue for the day: Why were all the American flags flying at half mast this weekend? Was there some national tragedy I was unaware of? They were already half mast before the super bowl, so it couldn't have been out of pity for the Pats. :-) I have a suspicion, and this is only a theory, that it is because Gordon B. Hinckley, the LDS president, died and his funeral was Saturday. Now, I have nothing against appropriate ceremonies to mourn for Mr. Hinckley, but it makes me wonder what are the criteria for deciding to lower all the American flags? I remember they were lowered at Ronald Reagan's death, and September 11. But am I being silly to think it is a little out of place to lower the flags for the death of a religious figure? I don't know why - something about the connection between the LDS church and the American flag just bothers me. Something about separation of church and state. Or, is this not the reason at all for the half mast flags?

Anyone? Anyone?