Archive for October, 2008

The Significance Of Character

October 23rd, 2008

My all time favorite, yet challenging course of study was the year I spent in the class Theories of Rhetoric.  My professor, Dr. Greg Spencer, continually used lessons on communication to be lessons on life.  He helped us to try and see the significance of character development in effective communication.  He would often explain in class that

“If you want to speak well, you have to think well.  If you want to think well, you have to live well.”

Every Time That Flag’s Unfurled

October 23rd, 2008

Starting in October 2008, there will be a more difficult test for people who want to become U.S.citizens.  From a list of 100 questions, 10 will be asked at random to help determine a person’s knowledge of U.S. history and government and whether he or she is allowed to become a U.S.citizen.

The following 10 questions are featured as part of the new test.  How many can you answer correctly?  The answers will be posted in the comments section.  While taking the test, please enjoy the great music video at the bottom of this post.

  1. How many amendments does the constitution have?
  2. The House of Representatives has how many voting members?
  3. Under our Constitution, some powers belong to the federal government.  What is one power of the federal government?
  4. Under our Constitution, some powers belong to the states.  What is one power of the states?
  5. What is one responsibility that is only for U.S.citizens?
  6. What are two rights only for U.S.citizens?
  7. The Federalist Papers supported the passage of the U.S. Constitution.  Name one of the writers.
  8. Name one U.S. territory.
  9. Who is the Chief Justice of the United States?
  10. Name one of the two longest rivers in the United States.

It Doesn’t Cost A Little, It Costs….well, you know.

October 23rd, 2008

I work for a company that is involved in the financial industry.  One of our general newsletters recently had a tidbit of information that I found intriguing.  I thought I’d share it here.

Little things can certainly add up.  If an investor with a $5-a-day caffeine habit were to take the money he or she normally spends on lattes every month and invest it in an account earning a hypothetical 8% average annual return, the accumulation would be almost $150,000 after 25 years.

Tidbits like that make one think about their typical spending habits.

Viva La Vida

October 22nd, 2008

I have been thinking a lot lately, with the help of Coldplay, about the concept of “Viva La Vida.”  The Horace idea of Carpe Diem has been a popular saying for a long time, and even more famous since the movie The Dead Poet’s Society.  I am not a fan of overused and trite sayings, so I never did latch on very well to carpe diem.  But I have been latching on to the coldplay thought.  And even more, as you can see in the image, the idea of I Viva.  I live.

I want to live.  I want to live the life.  Long Live the Life.

How is that being applied to my life?  Nowhere yet.  haha.  I am still really determining what it means to me.  Does it mean to just have no worries and do whatever makes me feel good?  Or does it mean to be more focused and determined and goal oriented.  I think it applies to both.  I think its more of a idea that comes into my head at any moment and encourages me and inspires me.

One area where it has definetly been a theme to me, is to take advantage of each day of life.  The older I get, I have been getting sad.  It used to be because I was sad on the life I was missing, that I was leaving behind, that i could never get back.  But more and more now, I get a little sad at getting older, mainly because that means everyone else is getting older too.  I don’t want to lose those that I love.  And so in taking advantage of each day, I want to tell someone I love them, I want to tell someone I think they are good at something, i want to encourage someone.  And even more, I want to see or just be with someone–spending time with and soaking up memories with loved ones.

How many years do I have left in “youth.”  How many years do grandparents have left?  The answer for both, sadly, is less then 10.  I just recently went to my 10 year college reunion.  As I was there, it really felt like old times, and I felt so grateful for my relationships and my experiences.  But also, as you could imagine, people would often say “i can’t believe its been 10 years already.  It feels like yesterday.”  Time moves quickly.  I will be losing many loved ones over the next 10 years.  To steal a line from a cheesy aerosmith song, another lyric I have been thinking about, “and i don’t wanna miss a thing.”  I dont want to miss out on people on life on new adventures, on finding joy in the mundane.  I want to live the life.  Viva la vida.  And even more specifically, VIVA (I live).

One minute I held the key
Next the walls were closed on me
And I discovered that my castles stand
Upon pillars of salt, and pillars of sand…

(Ohhhhh Ohhh Ohhh)

Perspective

October 16th, 2008

“When you wake up in the morning, Pooh,” said Piglet at last, “what’s the first thing you say to yourself?”
“What’s for breakfast,” said Pooh. “What do you say, Piglet?”  “I say, I wonder what’s going to happen exciting today?” said Piglet.  Pooh nodded thoughtfully.  “It’s the same thing,” he said.

All Because of You

October 7th, 2008

I’m alive
I’m being born
I just arrived, I’m at the door
Of the place I started out from
And I want back inside

-U2

This Week I'm Thinking About: Greg Crisci