February 22, 2013

The Perks of Being Human...

I saw The Perks of Being a Wallflower last weekend. My daughter had told me it was pretty good and I happened to see it at Red Box so I decided to rent it. I think I have a new tear-jerker movie (you know, the kind that you pop in the VCR when you need a good cry--Steel Magnolias is in that category).

The story (without giving too much away) is of a teen-aged writer who is starting High School the anxiety of the social patterns of teenagers, his family dynamics and the friends that take him under his wing. I couldn't make it more than 10 minutes between scenes without crying...yeah I'm a sappy old man...

There are lots of things I wish I could go back and do-over in my life but High School and my teenage years is NOT one of them, I identified very much with the wallflower character, unsure of what was going on at any given time, not really even aware of my surroundings, not even knowing what made me tick and afraid of finding any of it out at the same time if that makes sense, not knowing which adults to trust--and trusting the ones with their own agenda who managed to ruin it for me.

Still, I do think it was a good movie, lots of things to reflect on and if nothing else just a good story. I probably give it 3.5 stars (like the good movie reviewer that I am!) There's one phrase that stuck with me from the movie that has given me a lot to think about:

"We all accept the love we think we deserve"


Lots of thoughts about living, learning, observing, exploring, hurting and a lot of other human emotions. Don't watch it without tissues, you will need them!

If you've seen it, what do you think?

February 14, 2013

Song on the Sand - From La Cage Aux Folles

I try not to be too sappy on Valentine's day--after all if I want to profess love to my partner it should be done any day and every day if I want to--no need to have a day to remind me, but I find it both funny and maybe ironic that a song from a musical takes me there and I got to learn that this show is the musical version of the movie The Birdcage which I really like.


While browsing around Facebook I saw a message from Carol Lynn Pearson where she talks about stories related to this video:


La Cage Aux Folles--the play was significant to Carol Lynn's husband who was dying of AIDS and wanted to see it--for the first time in theater it was the story of 2 guys in romantic love, something that even in the early 80's was not so open. In contrast she says that times are better, we can now be more open about our love, talk about it, show pictures and make it an open and public issue. Yes, times change, people's perceptions and even self-acceptance change.

Something about sharing...
Something about always...

okay, I'll stop the sappiness...

Still, long before knowing songs about love, I grew up knowing that Valentine's day was more than a day to celebrate romantic love:

In Spanish we say: Feliz Dia del Amor y la Amistad = Happy day of love and friendship and in my mind, love isn't only romantic, it should be shared in its many wonderful forms--that's just how it should be!

February 08, 2013

Adventures in Mass Transit

This is a story about how I messed what should have been a pleasant experience into a nightmare just because I didn't pay attention to 1 vital detail. I was going to ride the bus home on a weeknight after work. I looked at the UTA Transit website for possible routes and alternatives. Narrowed it down to 2 and decided to head out to take a short ride on Trax (the Salt Lake City light rail system) to catch my bus connection that would leave me literally steps away from my complex. I have taken this bus home before (but probably not within the last couple of months).

What I failed to check was the map for my connection bus. Apparently the system has changes ever so often and I waited for what I expected to be my connection bus that never came. By the time I realized the error (after browsing on my phone and calling UTA) I hurried to catch Trax again to a central station which took about 10 minutes to get there, I hoped that I would be able to catch the next bus but missed it just barely as the train was turning I saw my missed bus turning opposite corners. Once I got to the central station the next line was not due for at least 1/2 hour, so I looked for an alternative route which was not due for at least 20 minutes.

I texted Jeff to alert him that I was on my way and not to panic (I should have been home at least a 1/2 hr by this time and was still waiting to get on a bus) frustration can not even begin to describe how I was feeling. I finally took a bus that took forever because by now traffic is full on rush hour. I made it home about 1.5 hours after leaving work---I could have probably walked home and be home way sooner than that. 

I felt so tired from that ordeal that I was about to write an angry letter to UTA but then again, it was my fault for assuming that nothing had changed--which had and from a conversation with a co-worker it appears that things are changing again in a couple of weeks, so I better beware. Still--and I'm not trying to blame anyone here, what happened was my fault--Salt Lake City has never really been a mass-transit premier city. I get that they're trying to get on a level of other major cities in the US but it really is a long ways before this happens and until then people are probably not going to feel comfortable enough to leave their cars home and opt for an alternative ways of transportation.

One positive thing though is that in a couple of months there will be a direct light-rail line that will be running right by my house and will drop me about a block from work. I better get my navigation skills sharpened until this happens, I don't want to be stuck in mass transportation hell again!

February 04, 2013

Cabin Fever Brings Random Thoughts

January came with some of the coldest temperatures I've ever seen in Utah. I don't think that the snow from Christmas ever melted. Salt Lake also gets one of the worst inversions that I know of. Some TV reports were mentioning that we live among the dirtiest air in the United States. Consequently exercising outside (or doing anything outdoors) is pretty much impossible. We went out for a walk on Saturday morning which was still too cold for much else--all I can say is I do hope Spring comes soon--it really is time to start warming up.

Last week's snow storm removed most of the mucky air and we started breathing normal again. Instead of running outside like I love to do normally I've been restricted to find other ways of doing activity, but I was invited to a Zumba class not too far from where I live and that's what I have been doing for the last couple of months as far as physical exercise--true that the ungodly hour of 5:30am made me cringe initially but it isn't so bad once you get going. 

Oddly enough the class is in an LDS Church building. Walking in there back in November was a little (no, it was VERY weird) but aside from the opening prayer the classes are pretty secular and hey, who doesn't like to do a sexy move now and then? The attendees are people from all walks of life, Whites, Blacks, Polynesians, Hispanics and the only thing that matters there is that you move in the general direction that everyone else is going---it took me a little bit to wrap my head around the things that go on there from the stand of seeing so many come together doing something that is so much fun and healthy.

Of course since I get to go with Jeff (and let's face it, the man has got moves!) it is pretty obvious that we're partners--it is interesting how we're navigating that part--most people just say "Miguel and his friend" and at first I felt a need to make a point that we're not just friends, but I honestly don't want to make a big deal out of it--there's no need to get bitchy and in your face with people that are gracious enough to provide a free class and do anything to make people uncomfortable, oh and it is pretty obvious that we're not the only homos there but if someone asks I'm not ashamed to say we're together and  I see this as my own version of building bridges and if this helps even 1 active LDS member feel better for LGBT folks it is a good start, if not then I figure kill them with fabulous Zumba moves above all else--so we'll see how this experiment turns out but I have to admit, it has been a fun way to exercise so far!