Here’s a picture of what I’ve been doing the last few weeks. Luke and Tamsyn are doing Boy Scout camp and I get to stay at home and read all day. With the number of hours I’m taking, I have to constantly read more than I do even during the school year. I wish I didn’t have to, but then, I’m also glad I’m not plowing fields or picking crops. That goes with special significance since I have no idea what the appropriate farming activity is during June in Texas.
I’m back! A whole year of law school finished. Now I’m just waiting to find out if I did well or not, so I’ll update you when I find something out.
In celebration of the end of the first very long school year, my friends and I went down to San Antonio last weekend to attend the Alamo Grand Tournament for Warhammer 40,000. 40k, as the game is known to players, is the science fiction themed war game I’ve been building and painting in the monthly spare moment I have found in the past year. I’ve discovered that I enjoy the creative outlet of painting and constructing these small things and look forward to doing some more of it since my schedule should slow down a bit this summer. Until I leave for England to get married, I mean.
As if I needed more encouragement, at the Alamo 40k GT in San Antonio this weekend, I was awarded 2nd place Sportsmanship, or the Davy Crockett category. I didn’t win it due to my amazing generalship and impeccable win ratio (I went 1 win, 1 tie, and 3 losses), but because I was such a gracious player and was charming. Also, the incredibly bad luck for my dice might have had something to do with it, and I definitely wasn’t getting any painting points. I think my opponents felt sorry for me and rationalized it like this: “Good Game! Sportsmanship points for that depressingly bad luck you had there!” Or something to that effect. Oh well, I won $75!
I also hope to do some more blogging, but we’ll see how that goes. Progress has been made, however, since this post doubles all the posts I had since last year at about this time.
I have some pictures from the tournament and always some cute ones of Luke from recently. I’ll try and get those up in a timely fashion. If you look for thefathermapple on a couple of the big forums, or my favorite, bolterandchainsword.com, then you might see more of my painting process.
In the meantime, I’m going to go paint in preparation for a doubles 1 day event in Plano on the 28th, and hope to hear from any and all of you!
P.S. I’m trying to type more of this on my phone because that seems like a good idea. It means I’m into it more often and its more constructive than looking at things like… This.
So, a lot changed since that April 18th post preceding this one. Let’s just tick some things off the list:
- I got engaged to Tamsyn last August. That was very nice.
- I passed my first semester of law school at Texas Wesleyan. Fun.
- I got to visit Tamsyn after Christmas due to snow storms and horrible service from American Airlines. That was incredibly frustrating followed by lots of joy.
- I started a hobby of painting and modeling plastic and metal figures, which I wish I had more time for instead of homework.
- My son turned six, I hit 28. His party was better than mine.
- In ten days and four tests (one today) I’ll be done with my first year of law school.
- In two months and 14 days I’ll be getting married to Tamsyn in England.
So if you’ve got some spare prayers or happy thoughts, I’d appreciate them the next 10 days.
What have you been up to?
I have a lot of news I’m going to spread over a few posts. I need to cover my new/old hobby of painting miniatures, my fantastical trip to England that I just returned from, and my acceptance into a law school.
First, the most immediate bit of news that most people will find quite important.
I got accepted to the 2010 Fall semester at Texas Wesleyan Law School. This is good news. I am still awaiting a decision from Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law.
The GI Bill should cover all the costs of me attending law school at Wesleyan. It’s located in Fort Worth, which is not too far away. Commuting would be possible and traffic would be less than going to Dallas.
Regardless of which school I go to, I will be a law student next fall. No teaching, no paralegal work, and no Army. Also, no social life.
If you’d like to see me before the Fall, please let me know! It will be a productive kind of social isolation.
Edit: As of April 18, it’s final: I’m going to Texas Wesleyan in Fort Worth! Go Rams!
In a letter dated February 26th, 2010, which I received this week, Baylor Law School Admissions Committee regretfully informed me that, after careful review, my application for admission to the Fall 2010 quarter has been denied.
Actually, Double-Shucks. Five years ago, I could chalk some of the disappointment I felt upon receiving a denial letter from a law school to several factors. I hadn’t studied at all for the last possible LSAT date of the school season. I had applied during the “late” windows for most of the schools. I didn’t get to spend much time with the personal statements or essays. I was expecting my son to be born in a few weeks and was nervous.
I don’t have those excuses this time. I am consoled by the fact that my father wasn’t admitted to Baylor either. He didn’t need those Bears, and I don’t either!
Perhaps I shouldn’t say that, so other future schools don’t think I’m some kind of fair weather turncoat, spitting childish names at a university because they turned me down amongst their huge pool of other applicants who are just as qualified and successful as I am. I should, in theory, be wishing the other happy, accepted applicants well on their personal journeys and hope they are successful in their endeavors.
Except, of course, if they are facing me in some future court room. I’ll go to lunch with another attorney where we’ll talk and laugh over law school stories. I’ll find out my opposition graduated Baylor Law School in 2013. Casually, I’ll put my napkin on the table after finishing my food, say I’m going to the bathroom and would they wait one moment, and then walk out the doors to my car.
They’ll sue me or something.
The “or something” part is why I want to go to law school.
“Fox in socks and Knox in box.” These are just a few of the words that I have had the pleasure of trying to stumble my numb tongue over tonight. I think Dr. Seuss’s use of the “Tweetle beetle bottled muddle puddle paddle battle” is the same last straw it was for Mr. Knox. But it was a lot of fun to read this book to my son tonight for more reasons than the pure oratory athleticism it requires to make it through the book in less than 15 minutes.
Childrens’ literature is written and illustrated by adults. I’ve read a fair share of it to my son, but so much of it, like fiction in general, is just not worth reading. The plots are so obvious that my four year old can tell me how it is going to end before we’ve finished the first reading, and they either aim too high or too low for children. These books should have a lasting appeal in case I don’t happen to read a book during the three month period in my child’s development that he would find it interesting. I think, (and not originally, might I add) that the books penned by the author with the incredibly famous pseudonym of Dr. Seuss stand up to this test.
My son, right now, can’t read. He’s four, so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt for now. He likes the rhyming and silliness of the situations that make up a Dr. Seuss book. (I use the doctor term because I think he’s earned it.) But I, the parent with an English Degree, enjoy the clever rhyming, unique metrical style, punning, and the artwork that was also done by the same person. People usually are blessed with a superior talent in life, where the good Dr. Seuss was able to illustrate as well as he wrote. These qualities of the books cause parents to smile as often as the child, and that is the true beauty behind the absurdity of books like “The Cat in the Hat comes Back.”
What are some other childrens’ books that will stand the test of time as well as Dr. Seuss? I am always looking for new recommendations and would like to hear yours.
Did I totally skip the month of August? You bet! It’s been a great couple of months since I left the military, and I have been busy, busy, busy despite my current lack of employment. No rest for the weary, they say, but since leaving Germany I have yet to get tired of this new life.
I spent weeks with my son and we have gotten to understand one another again. This is important. He listens when I say things because he knows I mean them, both when I reward or discipline him. Rewards happen more often because I can’t help but love him, but he’s a four year old boy. Every boy needs some correction now and then, or else they’d be robots. Also, he’s started Pre-Kindergarten and loves it. I’m not one to brag about my son (all day: I have to rest and get a drink of water sometimes), but he gets compliments from his teachers each day and even received one from another parent!
I have gotten to spend time with friends I haven’t seen in years. I go over and play video games with a buddy while our kids play together (which is weird in a fun way), I play my pen and paper tabletop games once a week with old and becoming friends gathered around the table. I’ve seen my grandmothers more than just once a week for the two weeks I used to visit when I was on leave in the military. My cousins and I have been able to hang out and see each other sometime other than Christmas or Thanksgiving.
The only thing I haven’t done yet? Get a job and post on here. Well, there’s one thing taken care of. If finding a teaching or paralegal job was as easy as blogging! I don’t get enough traffic on this site for it to even supplement my income, but I know people who do. I’ve identified a potential new career path to explore!
If anyone who reads this needs an odd job done, let me know. I’m sufficiently odd to fix a variety of problems! Also, I can open jars, lift heavy objects, and conduct thorough legal analysis. Call my cell, I’ll work you in to my schedule if you need me. I jest, of course. My resume is posted underneath “Pages” on the left of this post, then “Work Resume.”
I did update the Flickr page with some pictures of Luke and I showing a friend from the United Kingdom around the Fort Worth Stockyards. It was hot that day, in a classic Texan fashion, but it was fun. Check them out here.
I think this post contains a record number of exclamation marks in one piece of writing that I’ve done, so I should probably stop now. Suffice to say, this time has been good to me and I would like to share it. Thanks for reading.
Old friends are hard to come by. By definition, they have to be friends first, which are not the easiest thing to find all the time. Second, they have to be friends for a period of time long enough to start sentences with phrases like, “remember the time back then, when” or something similar. And third, they can’t be hard to catch up with. If you can’t talk to them now, then something has changed drasticaly or you just got along well and might not have been friends. There’s a difference.
I was happy to see a lot of old buddies and to eat a lot of good food. I was proud at how much fun my son was in company and how he impressed so many with his wit and charm. I am humbled by all the other people who said thanks to me for serving in the Army and have never gotten used to people doing that. It does make me feel appreciated.
But most of all, I found out there are people who mean something to me even if i hadn’t seen them in four years or four days, and the fact that they still care about me blows my mind into a fine particulate of former disbelief. To all those who stopped by, thank you again. You made my night.
Every night I put my son to bed, I have been surfing the mobile web while I wait the 10 or so minutes for him to go to sleep. Now I have found http://m.wordpress.com which allows me to read, post, and work on my blogs each night. I think this is a good thing.
Perhaps I can use this time which is currently used to re-read the same twitter, facebook, and myspace postings all over, and instead be working on a draft post or publishing something on my blogs. Perhaps.
In Japan, they have these novels people read on their phones that were written by other people on their phones. Let me repeat the significant part of that statement: written on their phones! Granted, I have not heard of anything that rivals a Dickens or Steinback yet, but mediums are changing quickly if I can write this very post on my new Blackberry Curve smart phone. Review is forthcoming of the phone.
For me, knowing some other imperfect human has done something gives me a bunch of encouragement to at least try that same thing, and makes me realize how much we human beings are capable of if we try and think hard enough. The current 40th anniversary of the lunar landing is an example of the intellectual upper echelons of human achievement, with Michael Phelps being a good example of the physical. I understand I might not have the physical ability to swim 4 miles a day, even if I worked hard for the rest of my life, I do know I could swim at least one.
This kind of thinking is what led me to running 26.2 miles in April and to sign up for another marathon, the Fort Worth Cowtown in February. If amazing singular humans can walk on the moon or write novels on their cell phones, a more well rounded individual like myself can be posting small updates like this one, work on a poem or a book, or run a few marathons.
Now I conclude, hopefully, the first of many posts from my phone, and hope these rambling words (which I think the late hour, darkness-save-for-the-cell-phone-screen, and soft bed are inspiring) provide you the mental feul to think of some realistically fantastic goal to set for yourself and take the first few steps towards it.