Closed for the week: The End is Nigh!

Close focus Ox by revlimit.

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The end is nigh!  Starting tomorrow and through Thursday, I will be unloading all the law I’ve loaded up between my ears, lay it down on paper and scantron for the perusal of some lucky grader(s).

Inside I feel like Mr. Green-Face (see above), but I’m ready to get on with it.  February 23rd looked so distant on my calendar way back when I first wrote EXAM DAY (in red) on it.

Now many months, down to hours, and then I’ll be through.

The only thing missing right now is an 80’s “moment” song… here you go!

“Once more unto the breach, dear friends…”  See y’all on the other side (bring scotch).

//A.J.

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This Is Not A Valentine’s Day Post…

SIKE!

Consider this an early April Fools post.

Happy Valentine's Day - May your heart not be pierced by warheads attached to former tree bits. by mélomane.
Love, Dynamically

Of the many types of loves in this world, i.e. loving your work, loving your life, loving your family; romantic love is probably one of the hardest to achieve.

So, if you’ve got that loving feeling for someone, let her (or him) know it everyday.  And if you don’t (this includes me) it’s nothing to dwell on.  Enjoy single life.  Date, figure out who you are (what you value, your goals, etc.) seek out new experiences, have an open mind and heart, and things will work themselves out.  Oh, don’t forget to smile.

Here’s some of my favorite love inspired songs:

Michael Buble “Haven’t Met You Yet

Kano Ft. Craig David “This Is The Girl

Chase and Status ft. Plan B “Pieces

Wayne Wonder “No Letting Go

Tanto & Devonte “Everyone Falls In Love Sometimes

Lenny Kravitz “Again

She and Him “Why Do You Let Me Stay Here

The Pharcyde “Passin’ Me By

P.M. Dawn “Die Without You

//A.J.

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Big News: Austinist Contributor

Austinist Cupcakes by I am K.E.B.

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Last Monday I received some great news (sorry for the belated posting, I’ve been preoccupied).  Austinist selected me to be a contributor!

What is Austinist?  I’ll let them tell you:

After its launch in March 2005, Austinist has “quickly become the local scenester’s essential online arbiter of taste” according to The Austin Chronicle after its readers voted the site as the Best Local Website for Fun. Austinist is a site that “knows Austin, and Austinites love it for its bite-sized news of local events, food, art, and entertainment.” Austinist has been listed in the Best of Austin multiple times, by readers of as well as the critics at The Austin Chronicle who praise a blogger on the site for bringing “a refreshing, sometimes contrary perspective.”

Blogging for someone, other than myself, was a big goal for 2010; I was very pleased to get this news.  More so because Austinist is very connected to the city.

I’m looking forward to the work (and play) ahead!  A big thanks to LuAnn for informing of this great opportunity.

More to come as things develop.

//A.J.


Greatness, It’ll Never Be Easy

The following passage is taped to my desk:

You do not possess a natural gift for a certain job, because targeted natural gifts don’t exist.  You are not a born CEO or investor or chess grandmaster. You will achieve greatness only through an enormous amount of hard work over many years. And not just any hard work, but work of a particular type that’s demanding and painful.

Source: Geoffrey Colvin, Fortune Magazine, October 19 2006

I’ll look up and read this silently during pauses of thought, or flashes of self-doubt in my abilities.  Then I remember, if the endeavor is hard and I don’t like it, that’s normal.

It’s uncomfortable to be challenged and force concentration to beat that challenge.  If it was easy, everyone would have [whatever you’re challenge is].

We rarely hear about the demanding and painful times because they don’t make good press.  We like seeing the money and success.  But like anything, ANYTHING worthwhile; success requires a measure of sacrifice, that is demanding and painful.

//A.J.


Black History: Kings and Commoners

2008-08-23 - St. Joseph Museum [FlickrSet] - 0307 by smiteme.

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Digging my head out of the BarBri book on my desk, I realized it was Black History Month (Ahh, my favorite time of the year!).

This being the designated month of reflection on Black history and culture, I’d be remise not to share one of my favorite poems embodying African-American experience, Dudley Randall‘s Ancestors (see below).

History, individual, family, and societal, are fundamental pillars to advancement in life.  We draw strength and inspiration from those who have come before us.  However, as is the case for many, if not most, Black Americans descended from slaves, that history is cut off from us.

Growing up, during this month, I’d hear about the great African kings, and queens, of vast kingdoms and trading empires, but never about the commoners.  By and large the majority of those brought on the Middle Passage were of that latter group (there being more commoners).  And it makes sense that we wouldn’t regard them in the same capacity as royalty.  They were commoners, of course.

However, while unnamed, at least one of them (though I could be descended from royalty, as well) shared my blood; and in some way, I view my existence today as testament (however small) to her or him.

Randall’s poem speaks to that:

Ancestors

Why are our ancestors
always kings and princes
and never the common people?

Was the Old Country a democracy
where every man was a king?
Or did the slave-catchers
steal only the aristocrats
and leave the field hands
laborers
street cleaners
garbage collectors
dish washers
cooks
and maids
behind?

My own ancestor
(research reveals)
was a swineherd
who tended the pigs
in the royal pig-stye
and slept in the mud among the hogs.

Yet I’m as proud of him
as of any king or prince
dreamed up in fantasies
of bygone glory.

-Dudley Randall

(Note: He also wrote “Ballad Birmingham” his most famous work.)

//A.J.

Why are our ancestors
always kings and princes
and never the common people?