Tuesday, October 21, 2008

OK, hold everything. I have neglected something pretty important in this blog, and I just wanted to correct it before I go any farther. See, the original purpose of this blog was to dedicate space to what MBHC truly is. I have tried to at least mention adventures, but really, of almost 50 expeditions in the last 5 years (Sierra argues that its more like 60, but she exaggerates) I have posted only like 5 times. maybe a few more, you can count if you want.

This happened because the real purpose I have is not to document fun frivolity, but to help me convince myself that an extraordinary type of person exists, and also that I am surrounded by them, and maybe even that I am a part of them.

I was convinced a long time ago that extraordinary people are really out there, and one of the supporting facts came from my brothers and sisters. Except for Sierra, Eli, and Wesley (and of course I'm not biased), I DO NOT KNOW OF ANY MORE EXCELLENT PEOPLE THAN WAYNE, PHILLIP, GAYLEEN, and oh, yeah, MICHELLE (formerly called) BROWN. Anybody who has looked through the blog knows know my problem. WHERE THE HECK IS A POST ABOUT MICHELLE?

Somebody shoot me. I am such an idiot. Seriously, anybody who knows this family knows that Michelle is by far the brightest star in our family. She is top on the list of EXCELLENT. Dan Myers, I love ya, but I am the biggest loser and ignorant craphead for posting a long time ago about you being cool, and then remaining silent on the issue of my sister Michelle. Ben Gunn, I think your awesome too, but I am the biggest fart for considering a post of you on this page before my sis. Michelle really HAS been to Mount Baker, dangit! She is more official MBHC than anybody. Don't worry Ben, your time is coming.

Anyhow, I hope that somehow I can one day remedy this massive mistake and be forgiven, but for now I'll have to just post some pictures and say Michelle is really amazing, and definitely belongs on this page. Sorry I don't have any glamor shots. Instead here are some pictures of when Michelle went hiking with her crazy older bro in the desert when she was like 8 months prego. Crazy! Most women can't even get off the couch at this point let alone trapse around in 110 degrees for 8 hours.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

I looked again
aching for dream and life,
humble student to unwritten song,
and saw a subtle warmth,
burning eyes midst fallen snow,
loving smiles to thaw the fountain.
An epic past seemingly gone
carried away by empty, drifting canoes
was unveiled anew by belated sprout
through mud and grime.
Futures yet unknown float beyond
realm of feeble sight, barred
by curving, crumbling canyon walls.

Saturday, October 18, 2008


If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or, being hated, don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream - and not make dreams your master;
If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two imposters just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with wornout tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on";

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings - nor lose the common touch;
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run -
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And - which is more - you'll be a Man my son!

-Rudyard Kipling

laus deo

Spreading afar and unfenced o'er the plain; and away to the northward
Blomidon rose, and the forests old, and aloft on the mountains
Sea-fogs pitched their tents, and mists from the mighty Atlantic
Looked on the happy valley, but ne'er from their station descended.
There, in the midst of its farms, reposed the Acadian village.
Strongly built were the houses, with frames of oak and of chestnut,
Such as the peasants of Normandy built in the reign of the Henries.
Thatched were the roofs, with dormer-windows; and gables projecting
Over the basement below protected and shaded the doorway.
There in the tranquil evenings of summer, when brightly the sunset
Lighted the village street, and gilded the vanes on the chimneys,
Matrons and maidens sat in snow-white caps and in kirtles
Scarlet and blue and green, with distaffs spinning the golden
Flax for the gossiping looms, whose noisy shuttles within doors
Mingled their sound with the whir of the wheels and the songs of the maidens.

-Henry Wadsworth Lonfellow (Evangeline)

Sunday, October 12, 2008

I miss my friends in Utah. Thankfully I have found amazing people here too. For example, John Watson, Ryan Cadwallader, and Stefan Knudsen. I feel dang privileged to be in the study group of the most upstanding and bright individuals at this school. And I'm workin' a deal that if I learn to golf with them, they'll come to the desert and learn about all that with me. Haven't quite got the consideration worked out...

OK, John Asked another question: basically, how does the mind work? Is it governed by a single central processor, or are there thousands of "central processors" throughout. See post.

Here was my answer:

Well, I'm pretty sure that my mind has no single CPU to govern everything. To illustrate, I have a real difficulty listening to music sometimes because later, like when I go to bed, thoughts will be racing around with that same song playing in the background. It happens with everything from REM to Arcade Fire to The Dimes...not so much with Ben Arthur or Classical music. The music is somehow lodged in my stream of consciousness in a strong way, apart from everything else that is going on... In those situations it takes alot of mental effort to "unplug" whatever cable got stuck in there. The frustrating result is that I am kind of an insomniac.

I often tell my wife that I think my brain is just a ton of loose cables floating around in a sea of memory and imagination, sprinkled here and there with strong determination. I do my best to keep a good amount of cables near that determination part. All the time cables are connecting two points and I have a stream of thoughts as a result. Simultaneously another cable might make a connection, adding to the flow of thoughts. Like a flute adding to the music of a violin, except my thoughts are way more garbled, and less pretty. Its more like playing CNN at the same time as CSPAN. Maybe. Then when the thoughts slow down a little the cable will disconnect and float off to be of use somewhere else. Sometimes with music it doesn't disconnect.

The REAL problem is that there are way too many cables going around, and whne lots of them randomly connect all at once, my mouth tries to fill in the gap of being THE central processor. While a kamanjah might sound good in a proper setting, it doesn't belong in the Turkish March.

Maybe I should also compare it to a partly cloudy city powered by photovoltaics. All the time sunlight is peeking through in spots and powering up different stuff, which in turn interacts with the other parts of the city in all sorts of ways. Like through email, cell phone, even the neighbors AC, or whatever you can do with the burst of electricity. Those interactions are what I'm talking about with "cables." The people (or "things") on each end of the connection are memory and imagination, etc. I feel like my thoughts result from those interactions.

So the question is, why do I not have complete control over those clouds? Or the people in the city for that matter? I know I have some, even possibly alot, of control. I can focus pretty heavily on what I'm learning, especially if it excites me. Or get me to tell a snowboarding or climbing anecdote and my thoughts are nearly 100% focused. No sunlight on any other part of the city, just that fun memory and a little bit of exaggerative imagination. But most of the time other stuff will pop in unexpected. Sometimes alot of it. That is kind of a stinker, like when I am noticeably distracted from a one on one conversation.

Anyhow, I am somewhat proud of my city. I try and keep it clean, and I try and keep it growing in a good way. Unfortunately there are too many parts out of repair, Like my Japanese section. Or Arabic. I've got a ton of Japanese people in my city, all throughout making connections to a lot of things. But the "Little Tokyo" branch of the city library is in complete shambles, not having seen even a new magazine in years, let alone good attractive reading material. Same with the restaurants and even the homes. Sadly most of the good folks that used to live there have up and left. One day I hope I can renew that neighborhood, and get things poppin again. But in the meantime they have spreac out, and now they have neighbors who love mountaineering in the North Cascades, or who can recite the Restatement (second) on Contracts like nothin. (I wish there were more of those guys... actually, I wish there was even one of those guys.) When those neighbors have electrical interactions, interesting things happen.

I don't know if I have main processors for certain things, maybe more like somewhat thicker cables that are harder to move around so they generally stay in the same area. Like typing. My fingers are moving over the board repetitiously, and they've been doing that alot lately. But to me its not like a processor operating off of files pulled into the RAM. Every once and a while I use my pointer finger to hit the "p"...Where the heck does that come from? I think it is my cable drifting a little bit. That cable is pretty heavy, but not impossible to move.

Consider my Japanese population, interspersed everywhere. Is each person a processor, because they can make connections in all their various ways? Or are they physically all in the same spot inside my head, so that area of grey matter "is" the central processor? I dunno.

If I had to subscribe to one of your two views, I would choose the blue pill. I mean number two, the "many CPU" theory. But that is entirely based on my own thought patterns.

Crazy question, and an even crazier answer. haha. Since you just came over and released me from the obligation of writing more I'll end. Hope this journey "through the looking glass" was along the lines of what you were thinking.