Tuesday, December 22, 2009


They decorate the temple grounds with Christmas lights here every year.

I like Christmas lights, but walking across the grounds, I can't help but feel like I'm in Wonderland. As in Alice in Wonderland.

In this case I would turn to the old saying, "less is more."

Your face is funny.

I never really expect anyone to laugh at my jokes. It always surprises me when they do.

One reason for this is that people often laugh at what I say when I'm being completely serious, and then they take me seriously when I'm trying to be funny.

It happens all the time. It's been that way my whole life. And it's really not so much the lack of laughter when I'm making jokes that bugs me. It's when I'm being serious and people laugh.

I guess I still haven't figured out the whole "facial expressions" thing because people always misinterpret me. I pretty much expect it now.

It was especially bad as a teenager. People would always ask me "What's wrong?" when I was perfectly content with life. So annoying.

And then in serious situations people would always turn to me and ask "What's so funny? What are you laughing about?" And then I stand there dumbfounded, wondering if they were actually talking to me or someone else.


Sunday, December 20, 2009

Quote of the day.

"An intellectual takes a simple thing and says it in a hard way. An artist takes a hard thing and says it in a simple way."
A true statement. My favorite people in this world can communicate a lot without using very many words.

It's very refreshing to speak with people that, rather than just talk a lot and depend on some of what they say to make sense, they refine their speech with fewer, more well-placed words that mean more.

Not that I'm some brilliant poet or something. I'm just saying.


Friday, December 18, 2009


This city will never feel like Christmas to me.

Today had a high of 76 degrees. And there are palm trees everywhere. Palm trees are the antithesis of Christmas. They're like the Anti-Christ.

Right now the weather is exactly how it should be during the middle of Summer. I helped someone move yesterday and I was sweating like a polar bear in a sauna.

And everywhere I go I hear Christmas music like "Let it Snow" and "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas" and I'm like... nope. No it's not.

Doesn't look anything like it.


Thursday, December 17, 2009

If you like Pina-Colada!

I'm back! Yeah!

[Applause, applause.]

So I was in the grocery store yesterday, I come around a corner and BAM! The heavens open and there's a ray of light shining down upon the Pineapple stand.

I love pineapples, more than any other edible thing on this planet. And yesterday they were on sale for 49 cents/pound. Which was great because I had a date last night and I had been wanting to try this for a while:

Mmmmmmmm so good! We filled them with Lime-aid, which I just had for the first time the other day and I loved it. So it was delicious because it mixed with the juices from the fruit. It was like a naturally refilling drink. Awesome. I would do it all the time if pineapples weren't normally really expensive.


Friday, December 11, 2009

The next big thing.

Whatever it is that's keeping me sick, it's the most effective weight loss treatment that exists. If we could harness this disease, we could make billions.

Wrap your head around this.

In the last 72 hours, all I've done is sleep, shower, post on this blog, drink lots of water, and *force* myself to eat one bowl of cereal. I only ate the cereal because I realized that it had been almost three days since I ate last, and I heard somewhere that people can only survive for three days without food. I was afraid that I might die right during the middle of one of my awesome hallucinations.

Anyone who's anyone, who knows me, knows that I like food, and I hate not eating it. And with my immune system waging nuclear warfare inside my body, you would think that I would need to replenish.

Nope. Just not hungry.

Imagine if we could discover what it is about this strange illness that eliminates the need for food! People could lose weight super fast!

My sense of time is completely shot. I've been drifting in and out of consciousness for the past couple days, and yet through all of that, I did my laundry! Ha!

It was seriously one of the hardest things I've ever done, having no energy, nor any will to live, but I did it, and at the end, I got to put on some very warm socks.


Thursday, December 10, 2009

A new disease.

This sickness that I have going on right now is very weird.

So far, this is what I've been experiencing. Perhaps you can tell me what it is.

  1. Hallucinations while trying to sleep.
  2. Going back and forth between shivering uncontrollably and sweating a lot.
  3. Losing the sense of taste. It's not completely gone but the front half of my mouth is.
  4. Being incredibly exhausted.

It's not a cold, since I don't have a sore throat or stuffy nose or anything. We can also rule out leprosy since I still have all my limbs intact.


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Whatever man, I know what I saw.

Last night I somehow contracted a disease. As a result of this, I spent the entire night having crazy-weird hallucinations. It was quite a trip.

It was different than a dream. In this case, I was very much awake for almost the entire night. I could see my clock and tell what time it was, and I got up to get a drink of water at one point.

But for some reason, all of the folds and creases on my blankets were acting as portals to architectural landmarks, such as the Space Needle, The Eiffel Tower, Pyramids, etc. Anytime I shifted around my room became a big jumble of all sorts of places and buildings.

And of course there were all sorts of random people coming and going through my room. Talking to me, acting like it's perfectly normal to have a wicked hallucination from nothing at all. Even as I got up to go to the bathroom this continued.

The only other time I remember this happening was when I was really little, and it was terrifying. I remember lying in my bed and being too scared to even move, so I just sat there and watched the hours tick by at a painfully slow pace.

Last night wasn't so bad. It wasn't scary.... it was just ridiculously weird. If that's what it's like to take hallucinogenic drugs, I think I would prefer to just have a good night's sleep.

Anyway, I got up about an hour ago, and I think I'm gonna go back to bed in about an hour. My whole body is super exhausted.


Saturday, December 5, 2009

Happy? Sad? Angry? You choose!

For some reason I feel obligated to mention that this is my 100th post for this blog.

...waiting..... waiting.....

Hmmm. Nothing happened. That's a let-down.

Well anyway, in honor of this occasion, you get to decide whether you want this to be a positive entry or a negative one. Think of it as a choose-your-own-adventure novel.

If you want Stephen to tell you something happy and uplifting, scroll down to where it says "Bunnies and Rainbows."

If you want to hear Stephen puke out obscenities about the blatant stupidity that plagues our society, scroll down to the section titled "Brimstone and Maggots."

Good luck.

Bunnies and Rai

I went to the Warner Brothers Studios this morning and sat in on a recording session for the USC graduate composition students. Let me tell you why it was amazing:

1. Despite land being 4 times more expensive in LA than everywhere else, the scoring stage we went to is 4 times bigger and 12 times more expensive than everything else on Earth.

2. The control room has a sound board that is bigger than most recording studios. I'm pretty sure they have about 300 channels at their disposal. And they might have even used them all, at one point. Probably not though. Nevertheless, all of the buttons light up. I should have brought my camera.

3. Every musician in the orchestra arrived 20 minutes early. I always thought it was just a myth or an ignorant blabbering when I would hear people in both Seattle and Utah talk about how musicians in LA are just better than everywhere else. From what I've seen so far, it's true. They play more in tune, more expressive, more precise, and they don't seem to be as self-conscious and insecure as other performers.

4. The entire back wall is a movie screen. This is so the conductor can watch the film while the orchestra is playing to it.

It was a really great experience. Truly awesome.

--- The happiness ends here. ---

Brimstone and Maggots

I hate Kinkos.

More than anything in this world, I hate that wretched abomination of a copy center.

Their customer service is pathetic. I truly hate it when I ask for something and the person working there somehow makes me feel guilty for bothering him with my business.

Their prices are ridiculous. I had to print out a score. 20 tabloid pages, single-sided. $22.

That's right. they charge $1.08 per page. Not to mention the $.25 per minute it costs just to use their stupid computers that barely work, running Windows 95. I paid $24 to print out a 20-page score.

Then I wanted to get it bound. The guy was a jerk to me. He literally talked me out of it.

"Well, look. For a coil binding on tabloid paper the only thing we can do is put two bindings on it, which will take some time, and you're looking at the cost of two full bindings plus a 5-dollar setup fee. We're talking at least $18."
A five dollar "setup fee"? I'm not stupid! I've seen how bindings are done. I could walk back there and do it myself with ZERO training! And you're telling me that each one of those little plastic coils cost $6?

Wow. Kinkos, You suck. That's all I can say. You're just a crappy, crappy business, and I hope you burn.

So I went to Staples instead. They don't have as many options, but I was able to get the exact same thing that I would have paid $18 for at Kinkos, for a grand total of $3.50. I have the reciept to prove it.

My newest goal for this lifetime is to destroy Kinkos.


Friday, December 4, 2009

Hola. Blog-o Entry-o

I like how Latinos will instantly become my best friend if I speak to them in Spanish.

Like yesterday I went to get my hair cut, and the lady cutting my hair was barely talking to me at all. Just a few basic questions, for the sake of pretending to make conversation. Her English was pretty good, but not perfect.

After about 10 minutes I answered one of her questions in Spanish, and after that I couldn't get her to be quiet. We're best buddies now.

It works every single time.

Here's another example. I went with my Grandpa to the Golden Corral to eat dinner. I'll never understand why they have servers at a buffet, but they do, and ours was a Hispanic lady. She asked us a couple questions from a survey and I muttered something in Spanish.

After somehow managing to contain her excitement, she went and got her daughter, who also works there, to "show" me (awkward)... (especially with Grandpa there). After her daughter went back to her own tables, our server started telling me about how she's a member of the church and goes to school and doesn't do drugs and asked me to give her my phone number so she can go out with me.

I'm not exaggerating. You can ask my grandpa. He thought the whole thing was ridiculous.

Anyway, I remember before I went to Oaxaca thinking about how much I'd love to understand what Hispanics are saying around me because I always thought they were talking about me. I have yet to overhear someone talking about me in Spanish.

It's too bad, too. I always wanted to jump in right at the punch line and be like "Why yes, I am very fat. Thanks for noticing." And then start crying.


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

It's December now.

I was looking at my traffic results for this blog, and I'm kind of surprised to find that there is no correlation between how many visitors I get and whether or not I actually post anything.

I've been sort of busy. And then I went home and was sort of lazy.

Visiting the homestead is great in small doses... but I think I would gain a considerable amount of weight if I went there more than twice per year. For some reason I have no conscience at all when it comes to food at home. I just sort of eat stuff. And drink pop. I never drink pop unless I'm at home.

Applying for the graduate film scoring program at USC was more of a hassle than I anticipated.

Yesterday I had an interview with the head of the program there and he seemed to like me okay. So I can maybe get in. If I want to have billions of dollars of debt.

The funny thing is that they accept about 25% of applicants. The BYU Media Music program has considerably more applicants and last year they accepted less than 5%.

It's true. In terms of just numbers, it's harder to get into the BYU School of Music than any conservatory in the country, including Juilliard. And yet they're closing the Media program because they can't seem to afford a full-time faculty member to run it. Nevermind that they have FIVE full time composition faculty, a program that accepts everyone who applies, and usually has about 10 students.

This is a boring blog entry.