Category: "family/personal"

5 Reasons I Love the Radio

After almost 5 years of hearing Danny defame the existence of radio, I have decided to do something about it. (Okay, I'm just going to write some lame post, but that is something, right?) Unlike Danny and his cohorts, I had a great experience with radio growing up. The music and radio personalities helped me define my own definition of "good music" and led to more musical exploration. Yes, there are a few bad things about radio: light banter, repetitive song choices, corporate leaders who don't care about artists or the music, many political talk show hosts. In spite of this, I still love the radio, and here's why:

1. New music.
From the time I had my own radio (minus that New Kids on the Block stint in 6th grade), I have used the radio as a travel guide to new music. "Sara, meet Pearl Jam. Pearl Jam, Sara." Thus began almost a decade of borderline obsession with Eddie Vedder, his lyrics, the band's style, wearing flannel and combat boots....ah, the good old days. The point is, without radio, I might not have been introduced to a band that had such an influence on my musical tastes. Of course I did not take radio's word for it: I went out and listened to all I could, I researched, I proselytized. I'm such a tool. But seriously, many of the memories I have from jr. high & high school involve listening to the radio, or to CDs I found out about from the radio, pondering things I wasn't quite sure about through the minds of my favorite artists.

2. Radio personalities.
This one is going to strike a lot of people as stupid; so be it. I believe that if you look hard enough, you will find a radio station with a high percentage of personalities that you enjoy; personalities who agree with and increase your musical taste; who increase your awareness of the world around you; who love what they do and cause you to love it, too. Currently, my favorite is 96.5 the buzz, specifically, the Church of Lazlo. And this brings me to my next two reasons.

3. Mystery.
Radio is inherently mystical: you can feel completely attached to a personality you have never met and believe in his/her musical choices and ideals without ever seeing that personality. Radio is so great--you can look like me and still get airtime! I loved my time as a college radio host. I loved walking down the dark hallway to the pit, walking through the door and seeing the "On Air" sign lit up, looking through the file for the perfect song to fill my free spot. I loved the power: elementary kids calling in to request Eminem, me saying "I'll see what I can do". (Translation: not in a million years.) I loved finding little connections between artists, "this artist used to front this band, which is now on tour with such and such", because these are the radio conversations that peaked my interest when I was just a listener, and I was able to pass that on.

4. Special format shows.
A college radio station has a lot of freedom--it runs on nothing, with shoddy equipment, and guys saying, "uh, dead air, um, uh". So the format shows abound: an all-female artist hour, an hour of the Grateful Dead and like bands, Premium Blend (my radio teacher's special hour of bizarre recordings and commercials). Commercial stations have a bit more structure, to say the least, but they can still try (if they are all about the music). In high school, Sunday Over Easy was my favorite: 3 hours of acoustic music that you would never hear during drive time. Here, I was introduced to Elliot Smith, Tori Amos, Aimee Mann, Elvis Costello. (His "Allison" is still one of my faves.) Try listening to the radio at odd times: Saturday night, Sunday morning, the middle of the night. I'm sure you will stumble upon a favorite format show.

5. Okay, I give up. I could only think of four. If I wanted, I could take the time to separate some of these into another category, but I'm lazy. Maybe it is all radio's fault. In the words of Elvis Costello, "The radio is in the hands/Of such a lot of fools/Tryin to anesthetize the way that you feel".

Planning a garden

Sara and I are planning to plant a garden this spring. We borrowed my parents' copy of Square Foot Gardening and I've been looking over it. The first chapter talks about how common it is for people to get excited about a garden in the spring and then not really follow through. Maybe that's the case with us. Maybe I'm just responding to the warm weather in the same way my ascestors always have. But, I think we'll give it a try anyway. The square foot method looks like a good place to start.

Easter pictures

Emma picking up eggs Hidden egg Pudding mustache

The Easter gallery is up. Emma had a great time coloring eggs on Saturday afternoon. When we got home from church the eggs and the basket were skattered across the kitchen, every one of them cracked. The cat had jumped on the counter, knocked them off and then spent the morning playing with the eggs. I found one of them under the dresser in Emma's room. It wouldn't have been so bad if we had not put all of our eggs in one basket. [pause for laughter] They weren't damaged too badly, so we picked them up and took them to my parents' for hiding. Emma thought it was fun.

Board games with siblings

Ticket to Ride OnlineLast night when I got home from class Jenny came over and we got online and started a game of Ticket to Ride with Mike in Florida. It's not very often that all three of the siblings get together and do something, so it was a treat. The online version of ticket to ride is pretty fun. If you want to play then go to the link above and get a username and password. It's free to sign up, but you can't create games. Since I own the game and I resistered with the code that came in the box I can create games. Let me know if you sign up and we can play some time. Mike went out and bought a microphone yesterday so we could talk via Skype while we played. In case you are wondering, Jenny won the first game and I won the second. This brings my all-time win-loss record in Ticket to Ride to 4-14.

Network+ Training

Tonight I start my Network+ training. I'll be at Foss Training Center after work for the next two weeks. I'm excited about the class and I've been going through the first few chapters of the textbook.

Danny's Blog Cabin v. 3.0

Welcome to Danny's Blog Cabin, version 3.0. I started a year and a half ago at LiveJournal. Just over a year ago I moved to my Movable Type blog at Brendoman.com. I've been playing around with different blogging software and I decided to try B2evolution. Since I was changing software and totally redesigning my site, I got to make some improvements. I found a skin that I really liked at Aqua-Soft.org and after I got it working with my new b2e blog, I wrapped it around my photo gallery. There are a few other nice things I was able to change, but the real difference is under the hood. Every page you view here is generated dynamically right when you click on it. That means that posting and commenting are going to be faster and with fewer errors.

If you're subscribed to my RSS feed, then you'll need to switch over to one of the new feeds. I recommend the RSS 2.0 feed. And if you want a feed with new comments, then try the RSS 1.0 Comments feed. Feel free to browse around a bit and then post a comment and tell me what you think. If you find any problems, please let me know.

I won!

My drought in Ticket to Ride is over. I finally won a game tonight. Jenny was only one point behind me and Mom only about 5 back. It was Dad's first game and he was about 30 points behind. This brings my record to 1 win and 9 losses.

This and that

I played Ticket to Ride a couple of times today. Jenny won one game with 152 points, the highest score we've seen yet. Mom won the other game. My record on my new board game is now 0-9. The we played a game of Settlers of Catan and I won that one. We even got Dad to play Settlers with us. My family is turning into a bunch of board game geeks.

I'm working on a redesign of this site. I don't know when it will be ready, or if I'll ever even make the switch. I'm still not sure that I like b2evolution better than Movable Type. Honzo has started a new site using a CMS called Nucleus. I like how that's turned out.

An anagram poll :: Napalm granola

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Which of these anagrams of "Daniel James Ferguson" best describes me?
Enflamed jargon issueMeandering Jesus loafUnmade Josef SalingerJoin dreamfulness ageJoe's unmanaged riflesDeafening moral JesusSerenade moanful jigs

Get your own anagrams at Internet Anagram Server (I, Rearrangement Servant).

More cat pictures

There are some more pictures of Bearmicks in his gallery. He's done several interesting things, including watching the fish, sleeping, sleeping in Emma's bed, sleeping in my bed and sleeping in a drawer.

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