9 Years of Holidays Without Family, My Christmas Carol Sunday, Nov 19 2006 

I have been a flight attendant for 9 years now and overall I am quite happy with my career.  The airlines have had hard times recently and I have seen my pay decrease by at least 25%, that’s about $1200 a month in real terms.  Those flight attendants who are still around mostly are in a place where we are happy, but create that happiness on our own.  The managers and directors of the company run the company, not us.  The door to the aircraft closes and they are not on it.  WHEW! 

So, to enlighten anyone who has ever thought “why don’t you just quit if you are so mad”  after hearing an employee talk about the decrease in pay or how exhausted they are  after a 16 (or up to 22) hour work day. These airlines are OUR companies, not theirs.  I personally have been though 3 CEO’s in my 9 years.  It is difficult to mentally give too much control of our careers to the managers and directors, since they will be long gone before too long.  Our companies are as good as we make it, and I do have to say I have seen both sides of the coin.  For every person that is fed up, there are two who are very happy in their lives and love their job. 

All of that said, its the holiday season again.  I am approaching another week of being gone constantly.  If there was one thing I really hate about my job it is not being home for the holidays. 

I love cooking, I love baking, I love seeing the house decorated.  Now, its true you will not see me with my arts and crafts kit out making little snowflakes, but it is nice to see. 

I have always had a decorated tree, even when I had to do it alone.  I really love the look of it.  I remember as a kid, I would always sleep downstairs next to it.  I would beg my mother to leave it lit all night, “just this once”. 

Well, no matter where I am, I know I will still be a little sad.  I remember a Christmas.  I was in Oklahoma City on Christmas day.  Of course, everything, including all restaurants are closed on Christmas Day so the options are minimal for food.  The crew offered for me to come with them.  One of the hotel staff had cooked for us, and invited us down for dinner.  I said no.  I was so angry that I was not at home.  I remember my mother calling.  I was sitting on my bed alone.  My mother asked “what are you doing?”  Then it hit me.  I said “you really want to know?  I am sitting on my bed, eating canned tuna with my fingers.”   I hated that moment.

Last year, for Christmas I arrived into Tokyo, Japan on Christmas Day evening.  When you go west you lose a day, so we left in the morning of Christmas Eve and got to Tokyo around 6pm Christmas Day night.  When I walked into the hotel, there was the most beautifully dressed choir, all in dark color robes, singing Christmas carols in English.  They were all Japanese singers.  I am not sure if they donated their time.  It was amazing.  My eyes filled up, I again got very down and went to my room.  It was a beautiful moment.  I just have anxiety about not being with family for the most important time for me of the year.   

I promise you today, this year will be different.  No matter where I am, I will make the best of it.  I have been sulking for too many years.  I will not do it anymore, or at least try not to. 

Nick

Projected House and Senate Sunday, Nov 5 2006 

Based on a collection of recent polls…the new counts will be:

Click for www.electoral-vote.com

Click for www.electoral-vote.com

Nick

Fool For Christ Sunday, Oct 22 2006 

We all pray to the same God. There, I said it. I know what you are thinking, but I believe this is true. Granted there are many different ways to do it, but in the end its understanding and acceptance we seek.

Hinduism worships Self and nature. Islam is the followings of the Qur’an which is teachings sent by Allah through Muhammad. Christianity is based on the New Testament and living your life for Christ. Buddhism is the “teachings of the awakened one” (quote from Wikipedia.com “Buddhism”) and simply follows mental peace and unconditional compassion. Scientists seek answers about matter, non-matter and how celestial bodies exist. All of these are in search of peace and an understanding of the unknown. We do all want to make society better, we just have different thoughts of what better is.

We have all asked questions about the origin of the universe. From that we all usually end in some form of faith. Faith that there is a supreme being, faith that there is no supreme being, faith in something bigger than us, or just a belief that we don’t know what lies out there. When the questions keep coming and the answers stop: that my friend, is God.

Religious extremism is going far beyond normal behavior to inflict or force your beliefs on others. In the West, this has been un-proportionately attributed to Islamic radicals. There are many more examples of religious extremes out there.

With 6 billion people in this world, no matter what your faith is, 2/3rds of the world does not hold your same religious beliefs. Non- [insert your religion here]’s just want a chance to live in this world peacefully and to believe in our own souls. You are not necessarily right, they are not necessarily right. Forcing your beliefs on others through extreme means is unbalanced and unfair to the entire population.

For the hard working, peaceful Islam followers reading this I will bypass justification of extreme behavior. You have seen enough of it, no more needs to be said on that.

The U.S. political arena is also flooded with examples of extreme behavior. Michele Bachmann is a good example.

A few things stand out in this video. Michele Bachmann appears to not be calling the shots, yet she is running for Congress where she will need to make decisions for us. Who are you electing if she wins this race? She said “be submissive to her husband”, “I had no desire to be in politics” and, “I hate taxes”. To a woman running for congress, these are extreme statements.

To the women reading this, do you want to be submissive to your husband? Today, finally, women are independent souls and in a marriage are 50% stake holders. What will change if Michele Bachmann is part of Congress? In all fairness she is not claiming that she will remove women’s rights, but there is no proof of what she will do. She has already said she, as a person is not making decisions. Who is Michele Bachmann? Is she a prophet from God or her husband’s spokesperson? You need to weigh the facts and look at what she is saying.

Homosexuals are evil.

Global warming is not the issue of the day

Terri Schiavo was healthy

“Iran is at a point right now where America has to be very aggressive in its response…and we should not remove the nuclear response”

These statements seem to be a little out of touch. Fasting for understanding and not feeling a big romantic surge for her husband is a non-invasive practice. I am not sure what that does to the sanctity of marriage, and certainly is not a widespread practice but neither affects our lives. Everyone should be able to deal with difficult decisions effectively, however it is done. Her other public statements do seem extreme, including the potential of nuclear war.

Do I believe that that radical Christians and radical Islam followers are the same? YES. The path is different, but the result is the same. All of those who are following the [their] word of God, do it at our expense.

The separation of Church and State is a real thing and is practiced in many countries. Thomas Jefferson wrote “I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, thus building a wall of separation between Church and State.” Therefore passing laws that were built as a message from god would go against this statement and in turn, against the modern interpretation of the First Amendment.

Michele Bachmann and many like her are rampant in the US and need to be told to keep their religion to themselves. The main issue comes in with passing laws that reflect the views of her God. Again, she said she had no interest in politics. What on earth is she doing running for political office if not to pepper her religion in our laws?

Look at all of the issues out there, especially the ones that are not being talked about. Your candidates are there to be challenged. It is your duty to ask them questions.

This is not a Hate Republican speech, or I did not intend to make it one. In fact I am sure there are Democrats that follow this (or another) extreme as well. It is more intended to be a Know Your Congress speech. Learn about what our options are.

Nick

Sell Your Work With Us Wednesday, Oct 18 2006 

Seeking painters, singers, musicians and photographers for a new website designed for independent artists.

 

www.UnderdogArts.com is an online gallery and music store for independent artists.  Commissions range from 16%-26% and will be based on sales.  There is a no fee set up option that allows you to upload your own product and process your own orders.  There are also other options available including warehousing and order processing.  Underdog Arts can also create your profile and upload all product information for an additional fee.

 

For more information, send us information about you, your art, and samples to artists@underdogarts.com.   Please place ARTIST REQUEST in your subject line. 

 

Underdog Arts

PO Box 68

Excelsior, MN  55331

artists@underdogarts.com

Wisdom Teeth, Update Saturday, Sep 30 2006 

The wisdom teeth are there and mean. They took another x-ray with this thing that swings around your head. It shows all 4 teeth. The top 2 are pretty straight and have some room to come in. She referred me to an oral surgeon to have the one coming in taken out. The other top one should be OK for now, unless it tries to come in too.

The bottom two are horizontal. If they ever try to move, I am in big trouble. They also sit right on a nerve and the dentist said more than likely there would be complications with a surgery.

So, in the next few weeks I need to get my wisdom tooth taken out. Ick.

Nick

Wisdom Teeth Thursday, Sep 28 2006 

At 32 years old, my wisdom teeth are coming in. I have heard once you get older, the surgery is much more painful! Is this true? I hope not.

I just got in from a 3 day trip, I went to exciting places like Flint. I did fly with a woman who I really like. I will call her N. N. and I have flown to Aisa and Europe together and have really gotten along. I really like her. If it were not for her it would have been very boring.

I had a trip for tomorrow as well, but I have to have these teeth looked at. They started poking through on Monday or so, and gradually pushed up. Now the crown of the tooth is pressing on my gums to come out. I am worried all of my teeth are going to be pushed out of my head if there is not enough room. I actually had a dream that I clinched my teeth and they all crumbled. I bit together and only my gums resisted my bite. It was very creepy!

Ciao all, I hope I dont need surgery!

Nick

PS  Casey, the Great Dane puppy is doing great!  he is playing again and chewing everything up!

Washington DC & A Horses Ass Monday, Sep 25 2006 

I walk around this city and can’t help but feel a heavy weight on my shoulders.

I see these beautiful buildings and am reminded what a great country we live in. These are your buildings. These are my buildings. We all pay for them. Our lives are dependent on what is in those buildings.

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I listened to a speaker on NPR tonight that said our lives are centered on stories. It is true. We experience events, but often quickly move on with our lives. We tell stories to remember those events we experienced. After 9/11 we remembered and told where we were, what was going on in the twin towers and what was going on in the planes. We do it just to remember the event. The facts are such a small part, its the story that gives us memories. Symbolism is so important in our lives.

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On that note: There are 300 million pawns in this great game. We are all paying for this war.

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We are approaching 3,000 Rooks taken down. It is amazing to me, that this President has taken such extreme advantage of our system.

Do we remember the justification for going to war? Today, can we make those exact same justifications? No, because now we know they are not true.

This President plays word games. He hides his agenda with whatever is popular at that moment. Republican spin has never been so desperate. The game we are playing is not fair, ask the world.

The saddest part is; this President has used American’s ignorance to his advantage. He uses them because they are supposed to follow authority, or because they don’t know better. The word games do not work for the rest of the world.

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Currently, we are trying to fight for our freedom. Actually, that is crap. We are trying to launch a fight to make it look like we are fighting for our freedom. Is it really our fight?

We have lost our freedoms to those who we trust in these building. They are the ones who are supposed to protect us.

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The most reassuring part of this story is that that their time in those buildings is borrowed. We all own an equal part of those buildings. We have an election coming up, and I implore you, please vote. It is your obligation to vote. It is for your fellow Americans, but it is really for the world. Please look at your candidates and make informed decisions.

There is something hanging over this beautiful White House we own…

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It is time for change. Please vote so we can regain our place in the world. This year we can correct some of the issues, and in 2 years the rest.

Nick

Eating and DC Friday, Sep 22 2006 

Casey is now eating. 2 days of force feeding was not fun. His cough is loose now, so I guess with pneumonia that is good.

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(Oh, I did clean right after I saw that picture! GROSS)

And he is sleeping! He needs his rest to get better.

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Today has been a little stressful, but all good. I am getting things done. I get overwhelmed easily. I made a list of about 25 things I needed to get done today and crossed them off as I did them. I think that is the best way now because I feel so overwhelmed sometimes and forget what I am doing.

I have a trip that has me working all night, but then tomorrow morning I am in Washington DC. I really like it there, I am going to plan my day in a bit, it is on the list. I think I will sleep when I arrive and then go out in the late afternoon.

I am working on a press release…a real one. I have to figure out how to do a press release first though! I have some good resources, so I think I can handle it.

Well, Ill post pix tomorrow after I do my trekking. I may have to post after I get home Sunday, but I will do it as soon as I can.

Nick

My Really Sick Baby Wednesday, Sep 20 2006 

====================================================================

pneu‧mo‧nia  /nʊˈmoʊnyə, -ˈmoʊniə, nyʊ-/ Pronunciation Key – Show Spelled Pronunciation[noo-mohn-yuh, -moh-nee-uh, nyoo-] Pronunciation Key – Show IPA Pronunciation –noun Pathology 1. inflammation of the lungs with congestion. 2. Also called lobar pneumonia. an acute disease of the lungs, caused by the bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae and characterized by fever, a cough with blood-tinged phlegm, and difficult breathing. ====================================================================

I took Casey to the vet again. He was not improving and I could tell he was getting worse. He has not been eating or drinking much either. I called them immediatly when I woke up this morning. I was so worried about him all day. He never got up once until I took him to the vet. Upon arrival at the vet they first took an X Ray. It showed he has Pneumonia. We then hooked him up to an IV and gave him some fluids. He is a really good boy considering everything we had to do to him. Poor guy.

I am now force feeding him. I am also giving him stronger medication in hopes of it kicking whatever is keeping him weak. The vet can not be sure what exactly is wrong, so for now we are just hoping this medication gets rid of whatever is wrong with the poor guy.

I am not exactly sure what causes what, but I believe he was sick with a viral or bacterial illness, and because that kept him weak he got Pneumonia. So, I belive the Pneumonia is a result of the other illness. P9200003

Ill keep you all updated.

Nick

Casey the Great Dane Wonder Dog…er, Puppy. Tuesday, Sep 19 2006 

Here are more pictures of Casey! I am a little worried, he is not eating normally. They really require a lot of food now, because they grow so quick. I am sure he will be fine, but I still am “cooking” for him to make his food more attractive to him.

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Here we went to the Psychiatry office to visit a friend. P9190014 P9190015

and finally asleep…although he sleeps about 10 hours a day plus the night.

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Nick

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