Tag Archive: cool


Life in the Office.

This Post is dedicated to the NBC show The Office. Joanna and I have started watching the show again, and it has reminded us why we started watching it in the first place. What makes shows like this so loveable is how we can relate to the characters. We are all forced to work with or live near characters that we would otherwise never want to include in our lives. This show is dedicated to these people, and I want to show some of the characters that are prevalent in my life.

First there is Jim. Jim is you. He is an easy going guy who works his 9 to 5 just to get by. He likes sports, is a people person, lives to for the weekend, and tries to have fun during the work hours. Even if this doesn’t describe much of you, he is personable and fun, so it is natural that you like him.

Then there is Dwight. Dwight does not quite live in the same world that we do. He has no sense o style, a freaky affinity for ancient weapons, a thorough  working knowledge of all Lord of the Rings books, and owns every episode of Battlestar Gallactica. He has trouble discerning his fantasy worlds with this one, and has no time for jokes or shenanigans. Dwight knows of a hundred different ways to kill a man, but he is most likely harmless. This guy genuinely thinks in black and white, and sees him self a champion for the good of mankind.

There is also Andy. Andy sings incessantly, and likes to remind you where he went to college. He thinks that he is the coolest thing on the planet cause he used to be in an A Capella group, but this is a soft, thin shell that can cause you to see what an insecure boy is underneath. He loves jokes, but if the joke is ever on him, then he is prone to freak.

Then there is Angela. She is the most judgmental person in the world. Her religious beliefs seem to be important to her, but to be honest, shes just looking to condemn others. She is a caricature of herself; always acting like she is too good for other people, because she prefers the company of her cats. She never lets down her guard and never lets you get away with anything. The little Tattletale thinks that jokes and fun are for the lazy and unproductive.

Sound familiar? Theres so many more, just check out the show, starting from Season 1.

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The Best of 2010

So as this year ends, we bring in a new one. Thats the way it works. I’ve never quite understood the cliche of  “ushering in the new year” cause it comes on in, like it or not.

Nevertheless, I thought it would be good to look back and reflect on some of the best times in 2010. Not all of these things happened this year, but this is the year that I found them.

This year had some big moments for me; first year anniversary with my wife, I got my first dog, I turned a quarter of a century in age, got my first blog, I got a twitter, I graduated college, I lost friends due to differences, and solidified other friendships at the same time.

Ive seen some great movies, but this list wont include just movies that came out in 2010, but movies I saw this year

Best Movies

1. Inception

2. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

3. Iron Man 2

4. Hes Just Not That Into You (yeah, I saw it)

 

Music defines so much of who I am. I love or at least appreciate just about any kind of that I hear from any time. Its hard picking out just five for this list, but I feel pretty good about a list of music I have found this year.

Best new found artsits

1. Mumford and Sons

2. Barcelona

3. Ryan Adams and the Cardinals

4. The Black Keys

5. The Dead Weather

In Relation with music, I love live music I have been to some of the best live shows of my life this year, and I cant wat for more this new year.

1. Mutemath

2. Athlete

3. John Butler Trio

4. OK GO

 

I love books, but with school and such, I have had a slow year when it comes to reading.

1.The Complete Verse of Rudyard Kipling

2. Anthem by Ayn Rand

3. Lullaby by Chuck Palahinuk

4. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo Steig Larsson

 

So I have a whole lot to be proud of this year, and I hope to have a whole lot more in the next year. I’m not big on New Years Resolutions, especially since I heard the statistic that most everyone has given up on them by the end of February. If I want to improve my life, I don’t wait till January 1st,  I start immediately. Pretty much all of these have been goals of mine ever since I graduated, so I figured that I can call them new years goals as well… So that being said, here are my goals for the year

1. Be more conscious of what I am eating and putting into my body.

2. Continue to run outside and stay in shape.

3. Become more fluent in Spanish.

4. Continue educating myself past what I already know.

5. Blog at least once a week, but try to hit as many Monday and Wednesday posts as possible.

6. Finish the rough draft of my first book and begin looking at getting it published.

what you arent reading

Ok so this post is for all of those who are reading my blog and are really thinking “Is there anything out there as amazing as this blog that I can read on the other 5 days of the week?” Sadly, the answer is no. BUT if you’re looking for something close to as awesome to read as this blog, then this post is for you!

 

http://stuffwhitepeoplelike.com/

This is a pretty funny blog about fads and trends that people like. I don’t get why it singles out white people, but its fun to look at our culture and laugh.

http://stuffchristianslike.net/

Even though this blog could be considered a spinoff, I think its fun Christian satire. This guy covers a lot of funny topics like “Asking people to scoot to the middle of the pew”, “awkward prayer requests”, “thinking that the rapture happened every time you are alone”, and “women with really big hats”.

http://foodgawker.com/

This is a great site that links to other food blogs. It pretty much covers everything you would ever want to cook. It goes from native dishes from different countries, to awesome desserts that make you fatter just by looking at the pictures.

http://bodyhobby.wordpress.com/

Ok, so I had to follow this after reading food gawker, to balance it out. This is a Canadian guy who writes on healthy eating. He doesn’t seem to be one of these people who want you to join the cupcake diet, or jump on a fad, he just talks about living healthy.

http://drjoshaxe.com/

Dr. Josh is a doctor that lives here and lives more of an extreme life in terms of diets. He came up with a way of eating foods that helps you balance your body’s PH level. Its really amazing, and he shares testimonies from people who have overcome cancer and diseases with his transform your health eating plan.

http://lifehacker.com/

This is a nerdy blog, I admit. It covers anything to do with computers or electronics. You can use it to break into another computer, find apps for your ipod/phone/pad. Its pretty cool to read if you want to decrease your social skills, and learn how to make anything work for you.

http://caintechnews.wordpress.com/

This is another nerdy site for people who want to know the most random things that their computers can do, or that the internet can do for you. Anyways, if you’re looking to read about viruses, Windows 7, find helpful sites, or get free vector art, then read this often.

And heres a few other helpful sites

http://www.truecar.com/

This is an average of how much cars are bought and sold for, so you know that you got a good price.

http://www.cse.unsw.edu.au/~geoffo/humour/flattery.html

This is for those who are feeling down….

My life in a pie graph.

 

Ok, thats enough links for one day, see you Wednesday!

Some Epic Songs

So now its time to get back to music. I love music so much it hurts, and I just may go on about it till you hurt too.

I don’t know what brought this on, bit I wanted to tell you about some of the most epic songs in my life. I love all kinds of music, maybe even polka. Maybe. Anyways, I just wanted to hopefully inspire you the ways these songs have inspired me.

There are just some songs out there that do so much more than make you sing ” ga ga ooh la la”. They can take your own feelings and emote them in a way that you never could, or maybe it’s so strong that you feel like they stole it from you.

Anyways, heres my list, it’s here to get that Lady Ga Ga song out of your head, ready or not.

Athlete, Tourist. One of my favorite songs all time, just a great song by one of my favorite bands ever.

Barcelona, Its about time. This is a band that I am addicted to. I hit play and cant turn anything else on for weeks.

Kings of Convienience, Homesick. Like a modern Simon and Garfunkel, I just love to sit back and enjoy them.

Mutemath Noticed. So good! I saw them live a while ago, and they put on the best performance I have ever seen, even better than DC Talk. They are a great band with very moving lyrics.

David Crowder Beautiful Collision. I love this song, and especially this version. If you want to know how I feel, check out my blog on my most influential albums.

TLC Dont Go Chasing Waterfalls. Such a great song from the 90s. I love the message in this song, its like its speaking right to me. I used to chase “waterfalls” all the time, and now that I’m sticking to my rivers and lakes, I feel so much more balanced and happy.

Death Cab for Cutie Transatlanticism. What moving lyrics. I mean how many 7 to 8 minute songs can you listen to without changing the song? It just builds and builds with so much passion and emotion

Regina Spektor Samson. Regina seems to be the child of Elton John and Salvatore Dali. She is so proficient in piano playing, and writes very moving lyrics, yet there is a certain feel of lucid dreaming in her lyrics. Even though her words dont really make sense all of the time, you still get the feel of what she is trying to convey.

South Loosen Your Hold. This is a band that I used to keep secret, cause I wanted to be the only one who knew about them (how uncharacteristically hipster of me), but I hope you enjoy them.

Decemberists Engine Driver. These guys have been transported from the 1800s, brought here to write their era’s music through a modern means. I’m not being metaphorical, I honestly think that they have to be over a hundred years old, and you can’t tell me any different.

Joe Purdy, Wash Away. Listen to this song and try to feel sad. Just try it. You can’t, can you? Well thats cause Joe Purdy Rocks. I first heard him on Lost season 1, but it took me forEVER to find out who he is.

http://listen.grooveshark.com/#/user/thisisdanjones/5429752/playlists  I tacked a few others on here for your enjoyment, I hope you like them!

Also, note that TLC is not on the playlist. Thats cause I was joking.

What makes a movie so amazing? If your answer is “Whether or not is was originally a Nicholas Sparks book”, then you are dead to me.

No, you first think of Actors, of course. They are what you see. Then you probably think of directors. Then, who knows what? Well, what I would love to try and get everyone to do is go out and buy a soundtrack by the time you finish reading this blog. You hear the music going on whether you realize it or not.

Think of Jurassic Park, in the scene where they are looking at the island as they are approaching by helicopter. You see all of the lush green land as it lands on the pad. Imagine Dr. Grant as he looks out of the Jeep and runs out excitedly towards the Brontosaurus. Now  I can gurantee you that John Williams’ score is stuck in your head by just the memory. It shapes your feeling of awe inspiring as they tour the island watching dinosaurs walk about without any of the actors saying a word. Think of the opening credits of Star Wars, can’t you hear the music just by imagining the blue font?

Star Wars brings me to a story I was not able to reinforce with a citation. Someone told me that Williams’ score wasn’t ready when they first screened the movie to critics. All of the voices and effects were fine, but there was simply no music. After the movie was over, the critics scolded George Lucas to his face, telling him the movie was unacceptable, and that it will go nowhere.

Then, as you know Star Wars ended up being a huge hit! Was it all thanks to John Williams? Or was it just a cruel batch of critics? Who knows, but I think that the answer is obvious.

So if you want to start listening to a soundtrack, let me paint a guide for you.

1. Find your favorite movie, and buy the score to it. Dont get the soundtrack with all of the bands on it, make sure its the score that goes with it. Relive the movie with the sounds as it takes you up and down.

2. If you’re looking for something to get your heart racing; Grab the 300 soundtrack. Tyler Bates sets out tracks that capture the gritty, adrenaline flowing music that gets you going. Another good one is The Man on fire Soundtrack. Its pretty dynamic, going back and forth from strings to rave music.

3. If you’re looking for a great all around soundtrack, go for Pirates of the Caribbean (any or all of the three). Listen to Gladiator or Avatar and experience a wide range of music that you can enjoy whether you have seen the, or not.

4. If you want to really get in the Christmas spirit, try listening to the Holiday Soundtrack. Without a word, it gives you a feeling of wonder and joy. Zimmer gives you that chill up your spine that forces a smile on your face and really puts you in the holiday spirit.

5. After you have discovered a few Composers that you love, try searching for more! Heres a few I really like; Hans Zimmer. Harry Gregson Williams, John Williams, James Newton Howard, Steve Jablonsky, James Horner, Clint Mansell, and Tyler Bates.

Go out and expand our horizons today.

5 Albums that changed my life

I know that There has been a trend going on since the earlier days of myspace.com of writing your top favorite albums, favorite songs, or random songs on your iPod, so I know I’m not exactly groundbreaking with today’s post.

But music has the ability to cross certain paths that conversation simply cannot traverse. Once defined for me as “organized sound”, music is found everywhere; its in every store or restaurant you enter, its playing in every car you pass, and its being played every night in the deepest parts of the rainforests by the most primitive people. Its quite inescapable.

I don’t think that we could ever accurately depict what music does to us. Its almost magic how we can be moved by a homely old Scottish woman singing in a language we don’t understand. Or how we can watch one person moved by a song that just feels silly or corny to us.

Anyways these are the first five albums that came to mind when I thought up the topic. Ask me next week and I might give you five different ones.

First up is an album by David Crowder, “A Collision”.

“Everybody wants to go to Heaven….. But nobody wants to die.”

This album is beautiful. When I listen to it, I hear a man who really believes. Its not someone who writes for a living, its someone who writes to live. Its set up like an old sermon you might hear on the side of a crowded street; first you are invited to come and listen, he tells of his own flaws, he talks about losing his best friend, and how he came back from his despair in the 7th track “A Collision”. This song was written not long after he lost his friend, and it one of the most powerful songs I have ever heard. It goes on for over 20 tracks detailing his message eloquently to anyone who would hear.

Then at the end is this strange interview in which he torments a poor radio host by trying to talk about his album in a jumbled, enigmatic way ( I have a feeling that this is what happens when he tries to express himself in speech, which explains why he writes music and not speeches). I always thought of this as an opportunity to talk with  him after its all over.

The next album is especially influential because of how I came across it. When I was in middle school, I would tape songs on the radio, so I could listen to them whenever I wanted. There was this one song, though that always eluded me. I would turn my radio on, and it would already be playing, and the DJ wouldn’t say the song name or the band when it was over. I had about the last minute of it for the longest time, and I would listen to it over and over.

Fast forward to my senior year of high school, when my buddy John starts playing it on the guitar. I immediately got chills down my back, I hadn’t heard that song in so long, and yet as soon as it started I recognized it. I found out that it was “Everlong” by the Foo Fighters, and I bought the album “The Colour and the Shape” as soon as I could.

This album really shows Dave Grohl’s ability to write.

“what have we done with innocence
it disappeared with time
it never made much sense”

“real life is so hard
we hide in the stars
that’s where our heads are
my head and your heart”

“come and I’ll take you under
this beautiful bruise’s colors
everything fades in time it’s true
wish that I had another
stab at the undercover
was it a change in mind for you”

The band does an amazing job at timing lyrics with music, and placing crescendos at the most vital parts of the songs. They are still one of my favorite bands ever.

Heres my favorite off this album “Everlong” on youtube;

Just a heads up, its a really strange video. I heard in an interview once that its based off of dreams he used to have.

I have to thank my old roommate Jon for introducing me to Stars. They are a Canadian band on Arts and Crafts Records, and I don’t even know how I would categorize their music. Want me to try anyways? ok, here goes. Going by this album alone, I would describe it as semi-electronic, jazz influenced, modern somewhat progressive indie rock. There, theres my categorization; take it or leave it.

Its the perfect music for almost anytime in your life.”Ageless Beauty” is a feel good song about being in love, “One More Night (your something something something) is about a hard breakup and letting go,  “Your Ex-Lover is Dead”  is about running into an ex, as they are getting over each other, and then “Celebration Guns” and “Soft Revolution” seem to have a political overtones (not sure I agree with them). Its not just an album about love, it really seems to hit you wherever you are in life.

Ok, I had no idea that this blog would be as long as it is. I’m going to take a break, post it, and write more later.

Up next: My other two albums, and honorable mentions!