blogger insider

We’ve had another round of blogger insider. Rebecca has posted her answers to my questions. Below are my answers to her questions.

1. Please tell more about your mission experience in Spain. How did it happen that you went, did you enjoy it, how did you spend your time there, and what did you learn from it?

A mission is part of the plan as it were in the LDS church. In other words, it’s the normal thing to do for a 19-year-old male and wasn’t something that I thought of on my own. I had been planning to go ever since I was a kid. It was a fantastic experience and I would love to go back and visit the people and country I grew so fond of. We spent the majority of our time talking to people about our church in the streets, parks and wherever we could find people that were interested in talking to us. While I was in Madrid, we also taught English as a free service which was very rewarding.

As far as what I learned from it, my vision of life was expanded. I had a very limited understanding of what life was and is for people outside of the US. I learned about the history of Spain, including the dictatorship which still affects them today. It was a truly enlightening experience to learn so much about another culture and become a part of that culture. I realized that I was beginning to feel that way when I thought to myself that all the American foreigners should leave, until I realized that I was a foreigner as well. I felt like Spain was my home.

2. Have you ever scared yourself on your motorcycle? Have you ever gone on an overnight trip on it? If so, how did you pack for it?

I have scared myself before, but oddly enough it was on a much less powerful bike than the one I have now. I was still learning to drive and took a corner too fast. An oncoming car limited my ability to take the turn wide so I leaned over as much as I could and hoped that I wouldn’t clip the front end of the car. In retrospect, I wasn’t even coming close to the limits of the bike, but at the time it was as much as I could do to stay on the road. Luckily it ended with nothing more than a close shave.

I’ve never gone on an overnight trip so I don’t know how I would pack for it. Probably just a backpack and saddle bags.

3. When you were a knife salesman, what kinds of knives did you sell? Did you sell them in a knife store, over the phone, or door-to-door? Do you have a best knife salesman moment you’d like to share?

I sold Cutco Cutlery on an appointment basis and asked for referrals at the end of the sales pitch to find more people to get appointments with. I can’t think of any great stories, but there was one guy who was convinced his knives were better. During the presentation he was gleefully sharpening his own knives in preparation for the faceoff. When we got to that part of the presentation, he required about five or six cuts to make it through the rope. He was able to cut the rope in one clean slice with the Cutco knife and was crestfallen. I didn’t make a sale but the look on his face was payment enough. I think he felt that his knives had betrayed him.

4. Where in the world have you traveled to? Which of these places would you most like to return to? Where have you never been that you would really like to go?

I’ve been all around the US, Canada, Germany, France, the UK, Spain and Belgium. I’d like to go to Australia at some point.

5. In several places in your writing you say “we.” Who is the other person in your “we?”

We’ve noticed that as well. ;) It’s usually my roommate, because we end up splitting payment for things like internet access so it would be misleading if I said “I had to pay $500” when I’m really not.

6. You mention an interest in hang gliding. Have you ever tried sky diving, scuba diving, or rock climbing? When do you think you might try hang gliding?

I almost went hang gliding on Memorial Day, at The Point of the Mountain, which is known as one of the best places in the world to hang glide. It also happens to be about 15 minutes away from where I live. There wasn’t enough wind but I plan on going sometime this week. I’d like to go sky diving and scuba diving at some point and I’ve already been rock climbing.

7. What inspired you to start collecting quotes? Do you have criteria for which quotes you put on your list? Any favorites?

Early on in the web (1995) I saw lots of quotes hanging around and as is true with many of the items on my web site, it was a test to see how to do it. I wanted to learn how to use JavaScript so I first generated a random quote in Javascript. I’ve since changed it to use PHP. I don’t have any hard and fast rules for which ones I add. If I like it, I’ll add it. The majority of them are either thought-provoking or funny, but some of them are just plain weird.

8. What are your pet peeves when you travel, eat in restaurants, and watch the news?

I don’t have many pet peeves when traveling. I’m usually pretty laid back about it. When eating in restaurants I really appreciate a server who keeps my drink filled. One of my pet peeves is when they crouch down next to the table to take your order. I don’t even know why it bugs me, but it does. I don’t watch the news much anymore and I can’t think of anything that bothers me when I do happen to catch it.

9. Do you have any interesting scars? What happened?

I only have one scar which is from a rock thrown by my very own brother. He was having an argument with a friend and apparently negotiations were failing. His only recourse was outright warfare but the intended recipient wisely stepped out of the way, leaving me wide open for a good crack on the noggin. It’s not very noticeable anymore, but it’s located on the center of my forehead.

10. What is the worst thing you’ve ever gotten caught doing?

I can’t think of anything really juicy offhand, but when I was a kid I remember I got caught drinking out of the apple juice bottle and in our house that was a pretty serious offense ;)

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