5 comments Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Why do we all have this dream?

And he really does nail it, at least for me, almost verbatim. It starts off with the instructor mentioning a big project or a book, something that would be impossible to catch up on at this point in the semester. Then the realization that you haven't even been attending class leads you to accept that you're probably going to fail. So you start thinking about how that will affect your graduation plans, and then suddenly remember some detail about graduating (for me it's always the date: I've written April 2001 on so many resumes, it has to be real, right?) followed by confusion. It uncanny how many of us share this dream, down to the details.

There is a similar dream shared among many returned missionaries I've talked to, about finding yourself back on a mission even though you've been home for years and have already started a family and career. Yet there you are alongside fresh faced 19-year-olds, who themselves are a little bewildered about why you are serving a second mission. Part of what motivates a missionary is dreaming about the life beyond--who will I marry, what will I do for a living, how will what I'm doing now help me later in life? But you already know all of that, and you know how much (or more likely, how little) anything you're doing now affects any of it. So you are extremely unmotivated, but you go through the motions, and serve your time anyway.

It's been several years since I had that dream, but I still have the school dream regularly.

1 comments Sunday, March 15, 2009

[Warning: this post is chock full of Nintendo, although I will try to keep discussion of Pokemon to a minimum.]

Owing to the generosity of the Blockburger clan, my kids have been glued to the Wii since Christmas morning. Their favorite game on the Gamecube was Super Smash Brothers Melee, and so it should come as no surprise that they are just as excited about the Wii reboot of the title, Super Smash Brothers Brawl. (It's only a matter of time before Super Smash Brothers Nuclear Annihilation, isn't it? Back in my day we were satisfied with Super Smash Brothers Fisticuffs, and its sequel, Super Smash Brothers Donnybrook.)

Personally, I don't get the appeal of these games, and I'm pretty into video games myself. But that's kids these days. If you aren't familiar, these games feature characters from all over the Nintendo universe fighting one another for trophies, or points, or something. You would have to be a serious Nintendo junkie to actually recognize all these characters, though, so the game serves as a pretty nifty marketing tool for Nintendo to introduce a generation of kids to characters they may have missed while they were busy not being born yet.

So it was with my kids and Starfox. They had grown to like the character on the Gamecube version of the game, but the Wii version actually includes a snippet of the old Starfox gameplay, which is kind of a 3D futuristic dogfighting thing. The kids fell in love with that and wanted more. As luck would have it, the Wii allows you to download games from older consoles, so it wasn't long before the boys were playing Starfox 64 like it was 1997.

That's when I started seeing these Lego formations all over the house.

On the printer:

On the piano:

And more of a minimalist installation:

I assume these are Starfox characters flying around in formation. I like how they chose a basic design that could be reproduced with ease.

1 comments Monday, March 2, 2009

This is the conversation I had with my daughter a couple of nights ago as I was tucking her into bed. She's four.

DAD: Amy, this room is a mess! Why is it so messy?

AMY: Because I just like to play with all my toys.

DAD: Well, why don't you put your toys away when you're done playing with them?

AMY: Because I just like my room to be messy.

DAD: Well, when your room is this messy you can't even walk from the door to your bed.

AMY: I just don't like walking places anymore.

DAD: You don't like walking? How are you going to get to your bed?

AMY: I'm just going to fly.

DAD: Oh really? And how are you going to do that?

AMY: [deep in thought] ...I'm just going to need a bird costume...