Posted by: rusch | December 21, 2009

Avatar Rocks

The truth is Avatar is one of the best movies of 2009.

Last Saturday I went to see Avatar with my wife and her family.  I had no expectations going into the movie and was totally blown away by the experience.  Oh, and I failed to mention we saw it 3d.  I believe there is no other way to fully appreciate this movie than to see it in all its’ 3d glory.

This movie rocks.  If you are going to see Avatar, go ahead and forgo the popcorn and fork over the extra cash to see this movie in 3d.

Nuff said.

Out.

Posted by: rusch | September 29, 2009

Radio stations throughout the years

As far back as I can remember I have been a fan of good music.  I think it was around 4th or 5th grade when I started listening to the radio.  Here is a list of the radio stations I have listened to at various time of my life.

97.1 KISN

Nicknamed “Kiss’in” FM, this is the first station I can remember listening to.  They played oldies.  I think I got into this one one because my parents listened to it while we drove around the great Beaverton/Portland areas in our Volkswagen van.  My favorite songs included Richie Valence’s La bamba, anything by the Beatles, and most songs by the Beach Boys.  It was great.  This phase lasted for about a year and then I moved on.

Z-100

This was a top-40 format radio station I listened to from about sixth grade until my family moved to Atlanta.  I am ashamed to say I ever listened to this kind of radio station for any period of time.  I have since repented and will never commit this sin again.

101 KUFO

This was the hard rock station I listened to when I was listening to when I was in the eighth grade.  They included bands like Metalica, Led Zeppelin, and Nirvana.  Had my family stayed in Portland, this would have been the station my dial would have been fixed to.  But alas, that was not to be.

Kicks 101.5 and Y106.7

When my family moved to Atlanta I had a hard time finding a new radio station.  I had not totally given myself over to any of the popular genres of the time and, to the surprise, went through a phase where I listened to country music.  This phase lasted for about six months and then came to an end.  Now I cannot abide modern country.  I like the classics like Johnny Cash and others but am not a fan of any contemporary country music or, more accurately what tries to pass itself off as country music.

92.9 and 96 Rock

During the fall of 1997 something happened that would forever alter the course of my life.  I heard Pink Floyd for the first time.  Pink Floyd was my gateway into classic rock and roll.  The alternative music station, 99.7 or 99x, left much to be desired.  Both classic rock stations had a different format.  92.9 tended to play more southern rock and stuff by bands like .38 Special, Tom Petty, and others I can’t recall at this time.  96 Rock played a combination of modern rock and classic rock.  They played lots of Floyd and Zeppelin.  They remained my favorite for a long time.  Sadly that station went off the air.

99x

Okay, I could not stand this one when I was in high school but around the time I started working at Brookwood in 2005, this became my favorite.  They played a good mix of new rock and what they called 90s alternative.  Their morning show was really entertaining.  My favorite thing about this station was Sunday morning program Organic x which played lots of acoustic songs and indie rock bands like the Decemberists.  Like other Atlanta radio stations, this one bit the dust shortly after I moved to Provo.  I don’t know why.  Probably bad management because this station was very popular.

96.3 X96

Since moving to Utah, this has become about the only station that I listen to.  I mostly enjoy their Radio From Hell morning show.  It is very funny and my only source for news.  Yeah, I know it sounds bad, but these days I just want to have a good laugh.

So there you go.  My favorite radio stations.

Posted by: rusch | September 27, 2009

The Game

Tina and I went to the BYU v.s Colorado State game. BYU won which helped to assuage the running wounds from last week’s blowout to FSU. While some have sought to exonerate BYU for that loss, I believe FSU is simply the better the team and let everyone know it. Their athleticism is incredible and I hope they go far this season.

Carter got his mission call but I will leave it to him to announce to family and friends where he is headed.

The call arrived Thursday afternoon in Idaho Falls. Mom and Dad Davis drove down with Casey on Friday to open it with the family living in throughout Utah County. It was exciting, fun, and, oh yes, Tina cried. That’s what she does and it is cute.

My ESL practicum began last week. I am so glad it has turned out to be so much more laid back than anything I did for the special education program I finished last spring. It is great to simply show up, do my thing, have fun with the kids, and then take off an hour and one half later. It’s great and I love the kids I get to work with.

Speaking of work, things are going well. I have a great group kids though they can get kind of rambunctious. I think my staff and I sent a message to them on Thursday and things have been much better since. We will see if this lasts, but it was nice to see an improvement on Friday.

Next week we are going to another home game. Casey will be coming to Provo to hang out with Carter starting on Wednesday. Tina and I will pick him sometime on Wednesday night. Well, either Colby or us will pick him up. One way or another Casey will get to Provo without hitchhiking.

I know there is really nothing profound in all this, this is simply what is going on in my life and I thought that I would share it with anyone interested.

Chris

Posted by: rusch | September 14, 2009

Enchiladas

I love to cook.  Ever since I can remember I enjoyed getting out the cookbook and destroying my mother’s kitchen.  When I was at Whitford Jr. High, I had two favorite electives.  They were wood-shop and home economics.

In home econ I had a lot of fun.  I would make a recipe at school and then come home and make it with my mom.  We made homemade hot pockets, no bake oatmeal chocolate cookies, and peanut brittle, and many things I cannot remember.  We had a lot of fun in our kitchen and I have loved being in the kitchen ever since.

My interest in cooking was kicked up a notch when I was on vacation with my family on Hilton Head Island in South Carolina.  While we were in a shop, I spotted a cookbook called How to Grill.  It changed my life.  A couple of days later I went to the Barnes and Noble on the Island where I bought The Barbecue Bible by the same author.  Both books are wonderful and should be in the kitchen of anyone who is interested in cooking.

As I have cooked my horizons have broadened, greatly.  Back in about 2006, I purchased The Joy of Cooking.  This classic got me hooked on soups and chili.  Another favorite cookbook that I refer to often is Sam Choy’s Island Sampler. This book has an amazing recipe for beef stew, tri-tip, and lots of other delicious dishes which are a fusion of Asian, Island, American, and, of all things, Portuguese cuisine (Linguica is the best breakfast sausage, period!!!).

Now I am taking on a new challenge, enchiladas.  It may sound silly to you, but it is a lot of fun for me.

As with anything I cook my goals are twofold.  First, my goal is learn to make something so well that I would not want to order it when I go out to eat.  This opens me up to try new things, or, at least get me to attempt to drag my wife to hole in wall restaurants which serve things that I have never had before or could possibly hope to make because they are so complex.

Don’t get me wrong.  I still enjoy places like Chile’s,  Applebee’s, and am always up for a trip to Mi Mi’s Cafe, however if given the chance of eat something familiar and something new, seven times out of ten I will choose something new.

My second goal is not to stress my wife out.  Her stress levels increase exponentially as she sees the number of pots, pans, utensils, and various kitchen sundries pile up in the sink.  I can’t help it.  When I am in the kitchen I feel like the mad scientist in laboratory on the verge of making a big discovery.  Fortunately I do clean up after myself so in the end everything is okay, and everyone is happy albeit a little stressed.

So enchiladas.

Before I got married I ran across a recipe on Food Network.com.  The enchiladas were a lot of work but the pay off was big.  They were great.  So good that I made them twice and everyone has liked them.  However the next time I make them, I am going to dial it back significantly on the chipotles and increase the chicken.  They will be a lot better and will not fry out the brains of those of weaker palette (something I learned this summer when I entered some curry in a competition).

This weekend I made some enchiladas that really came together accidentally.  I started out with the intentions of making burritos.  As I was shredding the pork, it donned on me that these would make great enchiladas.  So, some black beans, sauce, and cheese later Tina and I were eating some darn good enchiladas.

If anyone reading this happens to come across an enchilada recipe that looks good or has one they want share, post a link to it or leave in the comments.

Chris

Posted by: rusch | August 12, 2009

When it rains it pours

Tina and I have been through a lot lately.

About a week ago, we were in a major car wreck.  We got sideswiped by a semi truck while were at an intersection.  We just found out this morning that our car has been totalled and we are in the market for another car.

On Monday, we discovered Tina’s bike was stolen.  That really sucked.  Tina loved going for bike rides and now she can’t.

I had surgery yesterday but am doing well.  The doctor said my nose was really bad and that the surgery was necessary.  I guess that I am not going to play basketball anymore because I don’t want my nose ruined by one way or another getting bashed in the face.

Despite all the crap that has recently hit the fan, there is still so much to be thankful for.  I have a wonderful who loves me.  We have the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Church.  We have wonderful friends and family members who keep us in their thoughts and prayers.

I feel lucky to have such a great life.

Posted by: rusch | August 12, 2009

Surgery

I had major surgery today.  After years of being afflicted with a deviated septum, this summer I took some steps to do some thing about it.

My father-in-law recommended a surgeon he went to medical school with at the university of Utah.  He ordered a sleep study which was an interesting experience.

The sleep study was both the best and worst night’s sleep I have ever had.  It was the best in that I slept all through the night without periodically waking p throughout the night as has been my wont for about as long as I can remember.  It was the worst night’s sleep because all the wires and connection points were very uncomfortable.  I don’t think I ever made it to REM sleep, but felt it was all worth it because my Dr. diagnosed me as having mild sleep apnea and recommended that I lose weight and do some other things that help me overcome this affliction.

Well, today, August 11th, was the third time in my life I underwent major surgery.

Tina and I showed up at the appointed time at the outpatient center.  Shortly after checking in, I was called back where I underwent preop stuff.  They took my weight, blood pressure, hooked me up to an IV, and had me change into some hospital clothes.

We then sat around for a long time waiting for the anesthesiologist to come in and work her magic.  She did, and I was out like a light.  I woke up five minutes later in the recovery room.  Well, it seemed like five minutes because general anethstesia completely knocks you out.

I had some trouble breathing when I was waking up.  The nureses had to remind me to keep breathing.  I guess I did’t feel the need because I was hooked up to an oxygen mask that pretty much did it for me.  But, I decided that I wanted to go home, so I complied with the nurses’ request to breathe.  Breathing on your own always seems to be a good idea.

For a while it seemed like I was going to throw up.  I swallowed a bunch of blood which is never a good idea. But, thankfully I did not puke.  Just felt like it.  So, they gave me some more drugs.

After that, I went to another recovery room where I sat for a while until I could stand up.  Then they wheeled me out to the car and the Tina took me home.  I spent the rest of the evening just hanging out and enjoying the benefits of concentrated opiates.

I slept with my shirt off because I was not supposed to put anything over my head for a while.

So all in all, things are going well.  I am glad to have my wife, my health, the gospel and a good job.

Posted by: rusch | August 12, 2009

I have returned

I went on a self imposed hiatus from blogging.  Just so you know, my life over the past year and a half so has been super busy.  I finished my program at BYU, got married, and have remained active in the Church.  So this is why I have not been posting and tumbleweeds have been rolling through my blog.

Because I have been away for so long, it feels like I am starting all over.  Se before we go any further I would like to let you know what the purpose of this blog will be.  It will be a journal.  I will record what’s on my mind and what is going on in my life.  Second, it will be a place where I will publish essays about Mormonism and Apologetics.  Third, I will share music I think is cool, pictures, and other media with you that I think you will enjoy too.

So, for those who are wondering what Chris is up to and have decided to check out the blog, welcome back.  For those who are here for the first time I say welcome.  Look around and let me know what you think.

Posted by: rusch | March 11, 2009

Nerf Herder

I have fond memories of the semester I spent at Ricks college before I went on my mission to California.  Today, I was reminded of why I had such a good time.  I was going through my i-Tunes library and found the band Nerf Herder.  Nerf Herder’s music is really funny stuff.  My favorites are their songs about Van Halen, eating candy, and a girl named Diana.

If you get the jokes, the music will give you a belly ache laughing.

Posted by: rusch | March 9, 2009

Mental Health

I don’t like daylight savings. I think that Arizona and Hawaii have right idea by not giving into peer pressure and keeping their time the same all the year round. I mean why is daylight savings time so important? It seems completely arbitrary to me and makes one Monday a year about one hundred times worse than every other Monday of the year.

I thought about calling in sick, but then decided against it. I’ll take a mental health day sometime soon. Not sure when, but soon.

Posted by: rusch | March 9, 2009

Adventures in Church History

The other night I checked out a book by Leonard Arrington entitled Adventures of a Church Historian. This book is Arrington’s memoir about his work as a college professor, LDS Church Historian, and later as the director of the Joseph Fielding Smith Institute at BYU.

I have enjoyed the first seventy five pages and am about to start on why I wanted to read this book in the first place. I wanted to read Arrington’s account of what it was like to work as Church Historian and his interactions with Church general authorities.

When I read Church history, I must admit, I have bias towards the more human stuff. I really enjoyed Ed Kimball’s books about his Dad (Spencer W. Kimball), Richard Bushman’s biography of Joseph Smith, and what I have read of Arrington’s bio of Brigham Young. I doubt that I will ever read Mark McConkie’s books about Joseph Smith or much of what his brother has written either. They are too parochial for me.

The only thing I am concerned about is that Lavina Fielding Anderson assisted Arrington in writing this book and, according to some, wrote some sections herself in behalf of Arrington. So the problem is to figure out when Leonard is telling the story and when is Lavina telling the story.

This book is out of print. You can buy it on Amazon.com for over one hundred dollars. A better option would be to check it out from the Provo or Orem public libraries for free.

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