As a thank you to my top commentators of the first half of this year, this edition of Web Quotes and Counterpoints will feature quotes from my readers’ blogs only! June was my best month yet for this blog and I owe it to all of you. Thank you!
We start off with Matt of HookLineSinker fame. He’s been sick lately but is finally starting to feel better. Being sick sucks so let’s all wish him a super quick full recovery. At least Matt’s sickness gave him a chance to see a great movie, Into the Wild, the story of Christopher McCandless‘ journey into the Alaskan wilderness. It’s a fantastic movie and I recommend all my readers check it out. If you like Pearl Jam you’ll love the soundtrack to Into the Wild, as it’s an all acoustic album by Eddie Vedder. Matt also saw the new Angelina Jolie movie, Wanted, this weekend and saw a stark contrast to the simple but sad beauty of Into the Wild:
Wanted is a great example of 100% American Hollywood. They try to get the audience of people who have boring jobs (99.9%?) and make them feel like they could be a world class assassin and be around hot women and fast cars and blah blah blah. I enjoyed it for what it was but the whole time I’m thinking, I’d rather not have to deal with riding the top of a train, getting shot at, being beat down repeatedly, getting stabbed and cut repeatedly, and just get away from that whole mess and live a normal life. The movie ends with the line “What the @#$% have you done lately?” … How um, cheesy? For starters I overpaid for movie tickets to a movie theater that has sub-par seating and projectors.
I love how Matt describes the chase scene and getting shot at as mundane tasks. I’ve yet to see Wanted, I intended to but will hold off based on that review. I’m perfectly content with my life right now and don’t really need to escape from it. Sounds like a movie I’ll eventually rent but for now the four free passes I have to the movies will go towards seeing Wall-E, which sounds absolutely amazing. Also Matt, I’d highly recommend you go ahead with your plan to get rid of one of your cars and highly encourage you at least consider bicycling to work. Buying a bicycle is easily one of the best decisions I’ve ever made and it’s already paid for itself through sheer enjoyment and improved health!
Next up is Ahmad Farid from Unleashing Thoughts. Ahmad witnessed an interaction on a bus between the driver and a passenger that was rude on both parts. Ahmad makes a dark realization that:
Two people who have never seen anything bad from the other are just treating each other as enemies.
Unfortunately it is human nature and history that automatically makes us confront others as enemies. Ahmad wonders:
Why do people like to show anger and hatred? Is it for showing strength? Dignity? Honor?
The answer, I believe, lies with our ancestors. They were forced to analyze everyone as an enemy first in order to protect themselves and their family. Those people who assumed everyone was friendly most likely died quicker due to more evil people taking advantage of them. Eventually humans start grouping themselves into communities and were able to overcome sinister individuals and were forced to act nicely to each other but as my post from six days ago and the passenger and driver on Ahmad’s bus show, our angry and aggressive tendencies have a way of showing themselves. It is why many of us must make a conscious effort to be nice but experience anger without thinking about it.
It’s now my distinct honor to introduce the next President of the United States, Douglas Ragan, from The New Pundit. I’ll let himself explain why he’ll be the next President:
I am not actually running for President of the US for a few reasons. One reason is that I am 33. Another reason is that I have no political experience. And lastly, I am a very reasonable person who does not enjoy lying, therefore no one would ever vote for me.
So, he won’t actually be the next President but by not enjoying lying I already have more faith in him than either of the mainstream candidates! The New Pundit continues to act non-Presidential and gets right to work addressing a huge issue for many Americans, oil and the environment:
There are some economic minded types out there who believe that the green movement may be the next big thing in the economy. Some of the ideas would create many new jobs and there are a number of companies who would greatly benefit by getting their green ideas off the ground.
As one of those “economic minded types”, I’ve got to agree that the green industry will be the next big business in the USA and around the world. It’ll require a shift in consumer and corporate behaviors, from planned obsolesce that requires continual consumption to a sustainable model that focuses on local communities and thus strengthens the nation as a whole by strengthening each of our neighborhoods. If we focused all new development in the US towards green methods we could slowly but surely reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and ensure every citizen would have access to clean and cheap energy. It’s a win-win for everyone except the current behemoths of the economy.
Justin from LifeofJustin brings us some good news and bad news. A few days ago his iPhone stopped working:
So at this point, I am ready to barge in to the Apple store here in Phoenix and see what is up with this thing. I am really hoping to get a replacement of some kind. I just hope they don’t make me wait to get a new phone in the mail.
As a fellow iPhone owner, I feel Justin’s pain as the device becomes almost an extension of yourself, when it’s working right. I’ve had a few issues with my own iPhone so I especially understand the frustration of the expensive phone not working perfectly. My own problems have involved poor service, slow response time, and frequent freezing. I’m past the warranty but I might make a trip to the local Apple store and see if they can help me out too, after all Apple’s customer service is supposed to be phenomenal.
The good news from Justin’s life is that he went to Hawaii for the weekend. I’m a bit jealous that he got to just up and go randomly to Hawaii, especially since one of my good buddies just came back from there and had an amazing time there. It’s made me start thinking of taking a trip somewhere myself, though I’ll for sure be biking there once my injuries are healed and bike is fixed so Hawaii is out of the question for now. I’ll be going to the Saco river at the end of the month but want to go somewhere new too. Any suggestions?
Finally Casey from Volunteer Boston discusses a pretty cool non-profit group that helps Bostonians plant orchards in their urban environment.
EarthWorks is a non-profit that works with community groups to plant and maintain urban orchards in Boston. They concentrate on communities with limited resources where they can have the biggest potential impact. EarthWorks tries to connect the neighborhood residents with nature – something that seems quite far off in the middle of the city.
It sounds like a very cool organization. I’ve been considering planting a pear tree in our backyard lately and Casey’s post might just inspire me to go ahead and do so. We already have a small garden but we have just barely enough land for a few trees too so might as well!
Thanks again to all my readers for making June the best month in this blog’s history.