Lazerfest 2009 Photos

Posted almost 200 photos I took at Lazerfest 2009 this past Sunday. Click the READ MORE link to view them. Enjoy.

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=78668&id=732169524&l=c8acfaac14

Is MTV Promoting Underage Drinking?

So I do watch some reality TV shows. There is one that I’ve been watching called “College Life” where MTV has given a few college freshman cameras to document their first year in college up in Wisconsin. Great idea. If I’d had a camer ato document the stuff that I did in college who knows what kind of trouble I’d be in now! So these kids basically film whenever and wherever they want. They film their dorm parties, their hookups, their breakups, etc. It was quite borng at times, but then at other times it was kidn of interesting. So the most recent episode was about them all going on Spring Break. They all ended up going to Panama Beach City, Florida. Not together though as most didn’t know each other anyways. There is one guy that is flat broke. He has $175 to last him 7 days in Florida. Yeah right I am thinking. They show him buying alcohol like crazy and by the first day he’s spent all of his money. No surprise there. But what I sat there and thought was this. MTV allows this kid to film himself right? They, MTV, ultimately edits the footage to show on TV. They show him buying this alcohol and it hit me. This kid is a freshman. He’s 19 (even talks abotu how he is 19) and yet he’s buying alcohol. How the heck did he pull that off? Fake ID? The clerk not checking. So the almost 30 year old in me kicks in and is like “WHOA wait a minute here.” Why aren’t the clerks selling this kid alcohol getting busted for selling to a minor. And MTV showing this to me is promoting underage drinking. I don’t care how you spin it, that’s what their doing. All I know is this….my kids whenever I have some of my own are NEVER EVER EVER going to Spring Break if I have anything to say about it!

Affirmative Racism

aa1I’m sure you all know and have heard of affirmative action. In case you haven’t here is a short definition of what is it.

Affirmative Action – A policy or a program that seeks to redress past discrimination through active measures to ensure equal opportunity, as in education and employment.

Basically it is a program the government setup to make sure that minorities have the same opportunities at getting a job as any non-minority do. This is fine and dandy. I’m not saying they shouldn’t have the same rights. I believe everyone is equal no matter their race, sex, or religion. But what I do have a problem is when two people go for the same job and one gets it because they’re African American, Hispanic, Asian, or basically anything except Caucasian. Companies nowadays will end up hiring someone who is less qualified than another person applying for a job just because they don’t have enough “minorities” working in the company and they fear a lawsuit.

To me affirmative action has done nothing but cause more racism. Not against the minorities, but rather against the average white man/woman. I have known plenty of my friends who are white lose a chance at a good job because the company had to hire more minorities because the bigwigs up top were getting scared that if they didn’t have a certain Caucasian to Minority ratio they would feel the wrath of the all mighty lawsuit. What a crock. Why must companies today feel threatened just because they chose to hire a white person who was way more qualified for a job?

The black community is always screaming that they’re oppressed and that they are always being wronged or that racism is against all blacks. I’m sorry, but racism affects pretty much everyone. White, Black, Asian, Hispanic, gay, Catholic, Baptist, etc. Yet it usually seems to be the black community who are mostly throwing out the racism card. Yes we were wrong for having slavery. I agree with that 100%, but come on how many years ago was that? Why must we continue to be hassled for something we had no control over? How do you even know my ancestors played a part? I’m part Cherokee Indian. Do you hear me complaining about how my ancestors were murdered and used/abused? Do you hear me wanting reparations? Do you hear me, as a white male, throwing a fit when a black person calls me whitey, honkey, trailer trash, etc? How many black comics come on stage and put down white people? A LOT! Even some of my favorite ones. Yet if I were to go on stage and do the same stuff about minorities I’d be labeled a racist and possibly get my butt kicked. Yet when minorities do it they get laughs, applause, etc. Double standard anyone?

Again don’t take my comments as racist. They aren’t meant to be that. Yes racism exists and yes it is a big problem, but it is not just against one certain minority. As I said earlier it is against all kinds of people and many times not based on their skin color. Look at the gay community. They’ve had to deal with racism towards them. It isn’t really racism but prejudice, but it falls along the same lines.

I know this rant has gone away from my main point of how screwed up Affirmative Action is, but I felt it necessary to point out some things in order to show how Affirmative action doesn’t help everyone. It has done nothing, but cost a lot of qualified people good jobs just because a company only has so many Asians or Hispanics, or African Americans, or whatever working for them. I will end this with one simple solution to the problems caused by Affirmative Action. Find a way to prevent lawsuits from even going to court over something as stupid as “Oh I didn’t get hired and it is because I am Hispanic.” Once we can do that we can totally do away with Affirmative Action.

I know I’m gonna offend some people out there with this post, but so be it. I know that I am not the only person who thinks this way.

CD Giveaway

Ok so I have obained the new CD from Chimaira called Infection. I’m going to take a few days to really listen to it as it’s a new CD and I haven’t had a chance to listen to any of the tracks yet except for what I heard at the Music As A Weapon 4 Tour back in April. I’ll wit eup a review on here and then when that’s posted I’ll run some kind of contest and the winner will get a copy of the CD for themselves. Check back later this week for the post and instructions on how the contest will work.

Bryan Pixa LIVE!

If you’re in the Des Moines, Iowa or surrounding area you should check out this performance tomorrow night. Details are below.

Come check out Bryan Pixa performing live at A.K. O’Connors. The performance will also be streamed live on UStream.com at http://www.ustream.tv/tros
Host: A.K. O’Connors
Time: 9:45PM Saturday, May 23rd
Venue: A.K. O’Connors

American Idol Season 8 Finale

idol-logoSo I have a secret that I’m going to reveal on here. I’m a reality show junkie. Yes it’s true. And I watch American Idol and I love it. I can already hear some of you starting to hiss and boo at me. Hey at least I can admit it unlike a vast majority of you closet Idol watchers. So last night was the last performance of the night. Tonight is the results. This season has actually been one of my favorites since the one with Carrie Underwood vs. Bo Bice (yes I voted for Bo) and the one with Chris Daughtry (yes I’m a Daughtry fan). This year’s two finalist are complete opposites.

First you have Adam Lambert or Glambert as everyone calls him now. He’s from liberal California  and it’s rumored he’s gay. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I’ve guessed that since the first time he stepped on stage with his very emo hairstyle and the guyliner.

Then there is Kris Allen. The good ol’ country boy from conservative Arkansas. He’s got a Jason Mraz/John Mayer feel. His biggest downfall, at least for me? He looks like a freaking monkey when he sings. He has this thing he does when he sings out the side of his mouth that I swear makes him look like a monkey. And I’m not the only one who sees this. But I like the kid.

So last night the contestants had to sing three songs. The first song was one the contestants picked. Adam chose “Mad World.” This got the most praise during the competition when he first sang it so it’s no surprise he sang it again. In full Glambert style Adam comes out in a long black coat with fog everywhere, etc. He sings the song great. I actually like alot of his songs he’s sang this year. This one is one of my favorites. I’d give him a B on this one.

The judges praise Adam’s performance over and over (wow no surprise there) and I swear Kara was going to leap over the judges table with the way she was drooling over his performance.adam2

Next up is Kris with his choice of “Ain’t No Sunshine.” It was a song he’d done earlier this season that got good praise. Kris, unlike Adam can play some instruments (if Adam can he’s not shown it this season). Kris is at the piano for this one and it’s great. Another great performance by Monkey Boy. I’d give Kris an A on this one.

Next is the show’s producer, Simon Fuller, choice. For Adam he chooses “A Change is Gonna Come” by the late and great Sam Cooke. This is a great classic 50’s R&B/Soul song. Glambert is not R&B. Or Soul. Or 50’s. He’s a freaking Glam Rocker for crying out loud. What the hell was Simon (don’t get him confused with the judge Simon Cowell by the way) thinking when he picked this song? Does he think putting the Glam Rocker in a suit and tie and making him sing a 50’s R&B song is a good idea? Is this guy just so rich he could care less since he knows he’s making tons of cash no matter what he does? Anyways Adam doesn’t do that bad of a job on this but I’d give him a C on this one. Can’t fault the guy for somone else choosing a the song.

Now it’s Kris’ turn and Simon Fuller once again poops out another stupid song choice. He chooses “What’s Going On” by Marvin Gaye for Kris. Now granted this fit Kris better than the song chosen for Adam, but it’s still not a good choice. I mean this is a song that is 38 years old. While Kris did a good job it just wasn’t the right thing. Kris’ range and skills are not that of Marvin Gaye. Not even 1% of Marvin. So it just sounded off. I’d say Kris earned a C on this one as well.

Ok so now we’re at the end. As always there is a song written for the two finalist to sing. It’s usually some horrific cheesy ballad, etc. but alas it’s gotta be done. It’s tradition right? So this year the song is co-written by one of the judges, Kara DioGuardi. She was the new addition this year as the fourth judge. Personally I can’t stand her. She’s annoying and drives me up the wall when she’s talking. So she writes this god awful song called “No Boundaries” and it’s a pukefest.

First up to sing this monstrosity is Adam. Now this song was written for a higher vocal range so it’s perfect for Adam. So you’d think. But he doesn’t do too well and the judges end up commenting on his season and not this song. At one point Simon Cowell even takes a jab at Kara when he says that he’s not going to judge Adam on this song . I thought Adam didn’t do so hot, but as Simon Cowell said the song can’t be held against him. It was indeed the worst thing I’d ever heard on an Idol finale to date.

Next up is Kris singing the same song “No Boundaries.” Again remember the song is craptacular. It makes you want to stick needles in your ears people it’s that freaking bad. So Kris struggles with this because it’s written for a high vocal range. Kris doesn’t do high vocals. So he struggles hard. As with Adam the judges talk about how they aren’t going to judge him on the song, but the season.

What really ticks me off though is how they’ve been shoving Adam kris2Lambert down our throats for weeks and weeks. First you have Simon flat out telling people to vote for Adam to get him in the finals. Then you have Katy Perry who sang on last weeks show come out in a cape with Adam Lambert on it (of course AI removed that in the recorded version on iTunes). It’s just like the producers and what not of Idol have been Adam’s pimp all season and they’re hoping it pays off for them. I mean Glambert got backing vocals when he sang “No Boundaries,” but Kris got nothing. It was written for a higher vocal range that, SHOCKER, Adam has and Kris doesn’t. Just doesn’t seem too fair.

So now it’s up to the American public to decide who wins. Granted my pick all season got booted last week during the Top 3. That was Danny Gokey. So I had to pick a new person. I am a fan of both finalist, but if you couldn’t tell I’m leaning towards Kris winning. I know it’s a long shot, but no one expected Kris to be in the finals so who knows what can happen. Now according to DialIdol.com, Kris is up by 1.10% with 61.14% of the vote and Adam getting 60.04%. Now granted this is just a prediction BUT know that DialIdol.com was 97% right for Season 7 of American Idol and has accurately predicted the winner of every American Idol season that it’s covered.  I never vote on this show until the last two and I tried for hours last night and never did get through to vote for Kris. So we’ll see tonight what happens. The finale is two hours long and Ryan Seacrest did warn everyong recording it that they will indeed go long so adjust your DVR to record longer than the usual two hours.

Why Do Women Cheat?

cheating_womanSo the girlfriend and I were talking last night about different things for me to write about. I kept coming up with nothing. She then mentioned about me writing about why women cheat. Well I’ve never really been cheated on….ok maybe, but we won’t get into that. So anyways I tell her this and so she says well let me write it from a woman’s perspective. That works for me. She did borrow some stuff from an AskMen.com article on this subject, but did put her own wording into most of it. Just wanted to make sure to give credit where credit is due. And yes I already plan on doing a “Why Do Men Cheat” post myself here soon so keep an eye out. As always these are not in any particular order. Enjoy.

Not enough Sex
Women want to feel wanted.  If she doesn’t feel that she could seek it out from someone else. Some ideas to keep the spark alive is to take her out on dates, send her a provocative e-mail at lunch time or when your setting in the other room on the computer doing work or other things. Most importantly don’t let the little things interfere with the kissing, cuddling, and sex.

Self-esteem
For some women cheating is a self-esteem booster that makes a woman feel sexier, more beautiful, more loved. Just because she has self-esteem issues she necessarily isn’t going to cheat on you, but if she does it’s certainly not your fault. There ways to make her feel better about her self and feel more secure in the relationship. That in turn could prevent a possible affair. Pay attention to her, ask questions, don’t hold back compliments. A little flattery goes a long way with women.

Bad Girl
Some women have and inner sex kitten needing unleashed. This usually happens when there is major weight loss, new job, new friends, or even a mid-life crisis. Some things that could help are  keeping the communication lines open. By doing so shes more likely to talk to you then spilling her guts to some stranger in the night.

Revenge
Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned as they say. You cheated. You broke her trust and her heart. She feels wounded and betrayed. Now she wants to hurt you like you hurt her and what better way than to cheats on you like you did on her. To regain her trust you have to let your actions speak louder then your words because you can’t undo the wrong, but you can ask forgiveness. Let her know it will never happen again an maybe suggest couples therapy. If you go to church maybe ask for help from your minister/paster/etc. to get through the tough times.

Bedroom
First the bedroom part. The same position, same place, even the same person tends to become boring over time.  If she’s bored she’s more likely to cheat because to her the affair is like an adventure and that gets her adrenaline flowing. The unexpected adds excitement in the bedroom and in the relationship.

Your Emotional Withdrawal
Women are emotional beings. They need physical and emotional support. Once you retreat from the relationship she sees it as a sign that things are through and a break up is inevitable. Cheating is a way for her to move on because she assumes you’ve already moved on as well.  Try to stay very connected with her and show your feelings. Who cares if you’re the big bad biker dude. Suck it up fighting-couple1and do it without any questions asked.

Exit Strategy
She’s done with the relationship. She’s checked out mentally and instead of breaking up with you herself she cheats. That way she doesnt have to deal with the situation and is content with letting you blame her because she doesn’t want to hurt you. An affair is an easy way out or at least that’s how some women sees it. Another reason is lack of communication. Communication is a big key in a relationship so let her know that she can talk to you anytime she needs to about anything. Let her know that you love her enough to work through the bumps in the relationship road.

Lack of Intimacy
Most women want intimacy. Its not just sex that makes a women feel connected in the relationship. It’s the kissing, cuddling, and the other little things. If she doesn’t get that at home she may go seek it from someone else.  Spend quality time together, rub her feet, make a romantic dinner for two, anything that will give her a sense of unity and closeness.

Feeling Neglected / Ignored / Underappreciated
When she feels more like your maid than your wife or girlfriend thats when she can stray to. If  you spend more time at work, or on the computer playing games, or with your friends then that gives her a reason to seek attention elsewhere. Dont be afraid to thank her for the selfless deeds she does and do your share around the house and with the kids if you have them. Make more time for her and clean together to try and make it fun.

So looking at these reasons why women cheat you’ll see they cheat because usually their hearts and egos get broken and need healing and not just cause of their libido. Some of the key components to a successful relationship are communication, intimacy, love, and physical and emotional feelings for each other.

Of course some women just cheat because they just dont care about u that much or just are cold-hearted and could care less about hurting you or anyone else.

Five Ways to Have a Healthy Relationship

So if you’ve been keeping up with my blog you know that I’ve had a pretty horrific track record with relationships. So how can I even begin to offer advice on a healthy, successful relationship? Well just because I’ve had many failed ones in the past doesn’t mean I’ve learned from each one. I’ve had some time to sit and think about everything that went wrong and decided that I should share what TO do instead of what NOT to do in order to have that great relationship with someone. Now I’m writing this from my perspective as a man dating a woman, but most of these can easily be from a woman’s perspective.

Note: These are not in any particular order.

1. Take Your Time – Don’t rush into saying I love you or rush into “laying on thick” as they say. You’ll scare her off. Women for the most part are timid creatures. You rush in there like a lion rushing in to kill that gazelle, she’s gonna bolt.

2. Be Chivalrous – Regardless of what some people may say chivalry is NOT dead my friends. Open that car door. Pull her chair out at dinner. Walk on the outside of the sidewalk and let her walk on the inside. These are all things I was raised to do and still do to this day. Sure I may not open EVERY single door, but I try my best do to so. Plus my girlfriend gets out of the car faster than I can get over to open her door. But the point is I’m making the effort. A lot of women will say they are independent and don’t “need a man” to do stuff like that, but deep down almost every woman will appreciate it if you do.

3. Listen – Guys take my word on this one. Listen to her. You’re probably sitting there saying “I do listen to her what are you talking about?” As an old friend once asked me “Are you really listening or are you just hearing what she’s saying?” I’ve done A LOT of hearing in my days. It wasn’t until I started to actually listen to what she was saying that I got my old friend told me. Sure you can hear old-handsholdingbeachher tell you about her crappy day at work, or how her best friend was a witch” and that’s fine. But what about when she’s telling you how she feels about you or about a certain thing you doing or not doing? Do you hear her or are you listening to her? I’ll be the first to admit guys tend to tune women out a lot of the time. We sometimes get tired of hearing the drama, etc. so we turn off the listening part and just keep the hearing part turned on. The problem with that is sometimes we don’t always turn listening part back on and that’s the problem. When you don’t listen to her you’re gonna miss out on sometime very important. I’ve finally learned as I get older to never turn off the listening part. Leave it on all the time. You’ll benefit from it in the long run.

4. Remind Her How Much You Care – S you’ve gotten past the “I Love You” part of the relationship. I for one love that part because no longer are you stuck saying “Ok well bye” when hanging up the phone. But do you make it a point to tell her just how much you love her enough? I was once told to always tell someone that you love that you love them before leaving the house and before going to sleep at night because you never know what might happen. You might get into a car accident on the way to work or to the grocery store and die. You may not wake up or they may not wake up. How many times have you heard the person who just lost a parent or a wife, etc. say “I wish I could have had just one last chance to tell them I loved them.”

5. Do The Little Things – So what do I mean by the little things? The little things are things like doing the dishes in the sink or unloading the clean dishes from the dishwasher and loading it back up with dirty ones. Or taking that load of clean towels and folding them and putting them away. These things may seem “little” to you, but to her you’ve allowed her to relax and rest and not have to do those “little things” herself. There’s nothing wrong with doing the “little” things every once in a while.

Again I wrote these from a guy’s perspective but for the most part they can all be reversed to come from a woman’s perspective. I hope you get some use out of these and as always feel free to leave any of your own tips/advice in the comments section.

Mad Skills

Found this today while surfing the Internet and I had to share it with you all. This guy has some skills!

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What About Love?

love2So you’ve found that special someone. They make you smile and laugh. When they are gone you can’t stop thinking about them and longing for when you get to see them again. All of these things usually are the sign of love. Or infatuation. So how can you tell if what you’re feeling is true love or just an infatuation? Sometimes the line between the two is a bit grey and hard to see. My method is always to go with your gut instinct. Go with what your heart tells you.

Personally to me love is a lot different than an infatuation. Love is painful. In a good way of course. When the person you love is gone your heart aches for them to return. Or when you wake up in the morning next to that person you just want to hug them and lay there with them forever. That’s love. I’ve had both. Love and infatuation. With infatuation I never felt like that. I hated when the person left, but I wasn’t sitting there all day dying for them to return. With love you want to spend as much time as you can with that person. You want to do everything you can to make sure they know you love them. Now of course this only works if the love is mutual.

That’s why saying those three magic words, I Love You, can be a scary thing to do. What if the other person doesn’t say it back or what if you’re waiting for them to say it first and they never do because they’re waiting for you to say it first? That last one isn’t TOO bad, but sometimes it is an issue because one of you may think the other doesn’t love you because they aren’t saying it when they’re just as scared to say it first. This can sometimes lead to one person leaving the relationship because they think the other person doesn’t love them. This usually isn’t an issue. At least not in my own personal experience or in what I’ve seen in others. 

With infatuation you never really love the person, you just love what they offer. You love the kissing or the hugging or the sex. Or the fact that they buy you stuff or pay for things like your bills, etc, but that’s it. You don’t love that person’s heart and soul. You’re infatuated with them physically (most times) and have no want to pursue anything long term. Some people may even say you are a user or a player. I can see why some would say that especially if it’s for the sex.

When you truly love someone you love them unconditionally. You love their mind, their soul, their heart, their emotions, etc. Of course you’re gonna also love their body and that’s gonna be part of what you love just not the ONLY thing as with infatuation.

So why am I writing this. What’s my point? Didn’t really have one. Just wanted to get some thoughts down and figured I’d share what’s in my head with you all so I hope you enjoyed it.

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