Monday, March 30, 2009

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Subway Challenge

I often torture myself with nagging little thoughts in the back of my mind.

The other day, my dad offered to buy the family sandwiches at Subway. He asked me what I wanted. Okay, simple enough right? As I contemplated my options and carefully weighed them against each other, I decided that I wanted a seafood and crab sandwich. Then as always, I began to second-guess myself and thought I might want a "Subway Club" instead. Conundrum.

After a few more minutes of this indecisive shit sloshing around in my brain, I decided to go with my first instinct (which is usually the best choice) and told Dad to just get me a seafood and crab. It sounded great, and since I hadn't had one in quite a while, it would be a nice change.

Here's what happened:

Dad went to the local Subway store, and ordered the first two sandwiches. As those two were being prepared, he ordered my sandwich - the seafood and crab. The teenagers behind the counter then informed him that they didn't actually have the seafood and crab anymore. My dad said "Shit!", blew up on them and stormed out of the store. After struggling through traffic, he made it to another Subway. This time, he asked the employees right away if they had the seafood and crab. They didn't. So he told them off as well, and left. Eventually, he decided to just stop at Safeway and get a couple of sandwiches there.

This is my inner conflict:

I believe that emotion is most often contagious. Positive or negative, it tends to have a pay-it-forward effect on those around you. By working around medical patients - many of whom are sick and forgoing medical frustrations - I know this well. I also recognize the validity of the Butterfly Effect theory. One seemingly insignificant action may possibly snowball into chaos. Lastly, I am well aware of my father's temper and deep seeded anger and frustration - especially when dealing with food, for some odd reason. I am also well aware that he never ceases to go out of his way to try and make me happy.

Because of these things, I should have known better. I should have been smarter. And looking back now, ordering the Club (or any other common sandwich for that matter) would have been the better way to go. This is why:

1) Dad would have saved himself the stress, frustration, time, and least of all, gas money, of going to multiple places.

2) Those poor teenagers would have been spared of having to endure his frustration, which in turn wouldn't have worsened their own days.

3) Dian wouldn't have witnessed the story of what happened, and therefore come to realize that her new father-in-law has that hidden potential to blow up on people; secretly wondering if I am, or will be, the same way.

4) I wouldn't feel so guilty for putting this upon everyone, even for making such a minor decision in the first place.

The fact remains: The choice of sandwich was never that big of a deal to me. I would have enjoyed a Club just as much as the seafood and crab. I made a choice. And because of that choice, more than four people (five including myself) were hurt in some way or another. I never wanted that to happen. So now I'll try to be more aware of how my actions can really affect other people.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Green Eyes

A thought just occurred to me:

Lately I've been feeling the urge to move back to my hometown, Moscow, and put my every "career" effort into helping, growing, and supporting the city's recycling center. I now have the seemingly unrealistic idea of helping to turn the entire city - through recycling and energy conservation, etc - into the nation's first entirely "green" city.

With one college within city limits, and others in surrounding cities, I think I could get many potential supporters - residential and commercial alike - excited for this idea.

The city's resources would be conserved much more. Energy costs would dramatically drop. City-wide "green" education would be fully encouraged and embraced. Waste would be minimized. The levels of inspiration and leadership among surrounding communities would be astounding. And tourism, yes tourism, would be way up, therefore increasing the city's economy ten fold, which would in turn bring steady support to local businesses and schools. These are all positive things for the city.

No matter how outlandish this endeavor may seem, I feel like I owe it to my home; to my country; to everyone who's ever seen something special hidden deep inside of me somewhere. I owe this to myself, to finally stop thinking so much about things and just start acting on them.

Friday, March 13, 2009

The Collector

It's interesting how certain things from your past helped shape you more than you often realize. I like to find things. I like to collect. I like to take things from where they don't belong, and recirculate them into the places they do.

From the time I was little, my family would go out along the edges of our city's golf course and search for lost golf balls. As simple of an activity as that may sound, I realize now that it was quite a productive hobby. It was exercise. It was entertaining; like a weekly easter egg hunt. It was time the family spent together. It saved my dad from having to spend money on new golf balls. And it made me a few extra bucks when I would sell the rest to random golfers.

It's been years now since we last went golf ball hunting. But some part of my brain still lights up on occasion the way it did when spotting a ball in the brush. It's the same feeling now when I see recyclable items (bottles, cans, etc) in a garbage can. That tells me something. Maybe it's a sign. Maybe it's the universe trying to tell me something.

With the mentality of knowing that every little bit helps in the end, I can't help feeling that there's so much I could do about all this unnecessary waste.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Today's Thought

If you are someone who sells pets to potential suitors; someone who profits from the sale of puppies, kittens, and animals of all kinds, then you are a heartless person in my eyes. I distinguish no difference between the selling of pets and the selling of human babies. Why is it considered so disgusting to sell a baby, while millions of baby animals are bought and sold every week?