Sunday, March 25, 2007

Shed Again

Oh laddy. It's been a while. I mean sure, I've posted. But I haven't gotten in here and just rambled for a while.

Do you want the ramble, or do you want the short?

I like the ramble, that's what I'm gonna do tonight. I hope it does somebody some good out there. If nothing else it still makes me feel really good. So here we go, Sunday, March 25. Ramble like a man named Rambo.

The past few months have been trial by fire for a lot of us. I guess life is like that the whole way through. You get stuff thrown at you, you adapt, you roll with it. In the end you're changed because of it.

Haha. What is this? It's finally time to ramble and I've got nothing to say? That's preposterous. I've always got something to say, right? Hmm, what if I don't?

Well, we're going to keep writing until I find something to write about. I do feel like writing, so that's what I'm going to do. Write write write write write.

I really love getting an education. I love learning as much as I can. That's why I chose the schedule that I chose. I understand that the last sentence wasn't grammatically correct, and I accept that.

But back to my point. I've said it before, but I'm staying it again. That's why I go to school. I go to learn.

And I don't want to point any fingers at anybody, but I don't understand why everybody is in such a hurry to get college credits. In theory, getting college credits should mean getting the best education that you can, but I don't think that always pans out in real life. One thing I never really get is when people say that AP is stupid because the whole course rides on one test.

That's not the case at all. You take the course to learn as much as you can. You take it because you want to grow and become better. The test at the end is just an added bonus. The two ought to be totally separate in my book.

I know that society tells you you've got to get ahead in college, you've got to do this and then do that. And that's great, getting ahead in college is wonderful. But where's the rush? Why are we all so worried about college? I want to go to college, I don't want to get out of there before I have to. I'm sure that'll change once I get towards the end, but for now it seems really short. I don't want to rush life.

It's just my two cents, I know. And I'll be the first to admit, I've made some educational choices for the wrong reasons. For a really long time I was aiming to be the valedictorian. I knew I had the capacity, so why not shoot for it? That's one of the reasons that I wanted to take a million AP classes next year, just so it'd bump my score up.

But then I thought about it, and it goes deeper than that. I don't think I'm going to be valedictorian anymore, there's a good chance I'll be beat out. I'm alright with that, because that's not my main goal here. My main goal is to learn as much as I can. I wish that I didn't have to graduate, because I'd be taking other classes if I had the choice. But alas, state legislature says I need one more PE credit and one government credit, so an AP class gets booted for athletics and government. Sure, I would have taken athletics anyways, but I probably could have squeezed AP psych in there somewhere.

Either way, my attitude with education isn't the same as everybody else's I guess. I think attitude really is the big thing though. I know. Everybody says that all the time, everybody talks about it. Parrish's class did the whole education reform project. I wasn't part of it at all, I didn't hear any of the presentations.

But I get the feeling that you'd cover more ground and get more done if you'd just motivate the kids. Don't talk about why they need an education to succeed and make money. Don't talk about why they need active kinesthetic learning to learn. Talk about how learning is going to make them better people. Heck, it's Utah. Tell all the Mormon kids how important an education is in the eternities.

It's not like we're playing for money here folks. That's not the big picture. It's not about college, it's not about graduation. It's about you.

Why do I keep talking about education? I guess it's because it's such a big part of my life. I'm not pointing any fingers or condemning anyone. I just really take this learning business serious, that's all.

Track season is in full swing. It's interesting this year. I'm..... not taking it as seriously as I could be. When I finally decided to run this year, I decided that I wasn't going to worry too much about competing. I'm running for myself. I do it because of the way it makes me feel. I do it because I know it's good for me, and I know that it's gonna make me a better person.

Once again. It's for me. Not for graduation. Not for a scholarship, because I know that that's not even a possibility. I'm not doing it because Coach made me, or because Jose tracked me down. I appreciate Jose helping me get back into it though.

Track is life.

Diabetes is life.

I'll show you how, check it out.

The whole concept behind the track workout is contrary to human nature. The idea that I'm going to stay after school for a little more than two hours and sweat and hurt and not breathe doesn't sound like fun. I walk out onto the track and warm up, then stretch. Coach tells us that we're going to run eight 200's today. So, we line up, and run the 200. We pant and wheeze and hurt and wish it'd be over, and then we run another seven of them.

At the end of the day my shins hurt. My legs hurt, I'm all wet. That much sweat is so uncomfortable. I know it's a genetic advantage, but some days it's a little much.

I get dressed, and go home. I'm tired and hungry and crash. I take a nap, and wake up and do homework.

So that's track. Why do it? Why run like that? Why dedicate that much time and energy into something like that?

It's because of the way it makes you feel. Deep down, at the end of the day, you know that what you've done is right. There is absolutely no doubt in your mind once you're walking off of that track. You know that you are making your life better. You know that this is a good thing you're doing. It doesn't matter what else is going on in your life. Track is good for you. It builds your body, it builds your heart and your mind. You're stronger on the outside and on the inside. You can make better choices, you can do hard things.

Track gives you more than it takes.

That's how life is. Every day you've got choices. Lots of them look like it's going to be a ton of work for nothing. It looks hard.

And it is hard, there's no question about it. AP classes are hard. Helping other people is hard. Getting a job is hard. Not being an idiot is hard.

But in the end, it gives you more than it takes. Your life is going to be better if you do hard things. Being a slacker your whole life isn't going to get you anywhere in track, and it's not going to get you anywhere in life either.

Track is life. It makes sense.

Now, as for diabetes, it's a similar situation.

When I eat, I have to take a shot. For every 15 grams of carbohydrates, I do one unit of insulin. It's a party.

But sometimes that party gets old. Not only do I have to factor in what I eat, I have to factor in the exercise I get. Those are the two big ones. Exercise acts like insulin, it lowers my blood glucose levels. So, instead of doing a normal sized shot and then working out, I do a smaller shot, then work out. That way I don't go low.

But either way, sometimes you get tired of worrying about it all. Sometimes you just want to eat a banana and not have to search for your insulin. Sometimes it's easier just to ignore it.

Now, at the time that you make the choice to ignore the shot it seems to you that this choice is going to bring you happiness. You're not working hard, and you're thinking that working hard is bad news.

And so you don't do the shot. Deep down you know that in 20 years you're gonna be really mad at yourself for this. You do it anyways, cause you're feeling like being lazy.

Now, you had the 20 years thing right. In 20 years, you are going to be mad at yourself. Your kidneys are going to be mad at you.

But that's not the only thing. The truth is, when you don't take care of your blood sugar, you feel crappy right then too. It's not just a future thing. You feel so much better when your blood sugar is where it's supposed to be as opposed to when it's high. When you're high you're irritable and your body doesn't perform the chemical processes that it needs to as well as it should.

You don't notice it as much once you're used to it. But after a few weeks of really taking good care of yourself, once you're high you can really feel it and it's trouble.

So, what's the point? Life is like that.

You see a choice in front of you, and you're looking at two parts of it. You're looking at the short term, and the long term. Sometimes it's really easy to say that in the long term this is going to be good for you. That's the same way with shots, you know it's good for you in the long term.

The short term is more confusing. You want to be lazy, and it looks like in the short term that's going to make you work, and you don't want to work.

But the fact is, working, and throwing the lazy out the window, is going to make you feel better in the short term as well. Just like doing the shot and taking care of your bloodsugar makes you feel good today AND 20 years from now, so too will doing whatever it is that you need to do. It's the same principle.

What am I getting at? I'm trying to say that our lives are governed by the same principles, no matter what it is we're looking at. Whether we look at track or personal health or work of education or relationships or life in general- we can make a few certain statements about them all.

First and foremost, we can be sure that working at something is always going to be better than not working at something. Our lives will always be better if we're working hard.

Inversely, laziness will always make our lives worse. Perhaps it won't have a detrimental effect in and of itself, but the fact that it prevented us from doing hard work, which in turn prevented us from making our lives better says that it's bad for us.

We can also say that doing what's good for us in the long run is generally good for us in the short term as well. We really don't even need to separate the two anymore. Short term blends into long term. It's all life.

I'm sure I've said it all before. I'm sure that I sound a little preachy. I don't really like people that sound preachy when they write.

And yet, it doesn't stop me. I'm writing this more for me anyways. This is really what I think, this is really what I believe.

Does it mean that I always live it? No, it just means that I ought to. It means that I wish I did live it. It means I'm going to try harder to live it.

Yeah, things get in the way. Some days we're so messed up that it's hard to even get the strength to work hard. Some days we just hate the world so we decide we're not going for it. Some days we say that we've been kicked around so much, been stepped on so many times that we're through trying to work with the system.

These things happen. But we're the only people that can change them. Bad things happen to good people. It is hard, but it happens so we can grow.

When people's lives are screwed up, it's not necessarily their fault. Sometimes it is, sometimes it isn't. Sometimes it's a combination of the two. Regardless, the principles of life apply to them too.

If your life is screwed up, it's going to get a little better if you work hard.

Does that mean that your life isn't going to be screwed up anymore? No. It just means that it's going to be that much less screwed up.

If your life is good, does that mean that this doesn't apply to you? Does that mean that the only reason it's good is because you've worked hard? No. It just means that if you do what's right your life is going to be that much better.

Do I believe it? Absolutely. I know that my life is going to be better if I clean my room tomorrow. It's messy, and it needs to be clean. If I make my bed tomorrow, my life is going to be a little bit better. I don't really believe in the necessity of making one's bed, but I know that my Mom cares about it. And if she has told me to make my bed, and I make my bed, by golly my life is going to be a little bit better.

The dead horse is now a fine paste. I will now dip my paintbrush in that fine paste and continue to paint a picture with it.

Just kidding, it just seemed like the natural sequence of things, that's all.

So what does it all mean? Why do I write it all down? Is it going to impact my week?

I sure hope so.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Ninja Pajamas

It's pretty late, but I wanted to congratulate everybody on making it through third term. We're officially on the downhill slope now. Junior year is the hardest, and third term is the hardest. Nothing we see from here on out is going to be as intense as this term was. Hooblay.

I finally realized that I've got a pretty stacked schedule this year. I never even thought about it till recently, when there's been staggering amounts of homework every other night.

I'm happy about it though. I'm doing what I want to be doing.

Well, I'm not sleeping as much as I'd like to be. I'm gonna go do that. Hooblay!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Sunday Night Wikibomb

Happy Sunday everybody. I just went on an epic wikibomb. I didn't read the entirety of all the articles, but I skimmed most of them. I learned a lot tonight, even if it was just a tiny bit of background knowledge.

Paleo asked a question regarding Jenghis Khan, who was featured in my recent doodle post.

Q: "Genghis is sometimes known as Jenghis, so how can he be his son?"

A: MJ (our world history teacher) always called him Jenghis. We always call him Genghis. We thought this was comical, and decided to mock this new Jenghis character. We all knew that MJ meant Genghis. We were bored and wanted to have some fun, so Jenghis was born.

We have taken artistic license. Yes, we are making history up. It's inaccurate, but at least it helps us survive the day.

In conclusion, Libya is a land of contrast.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007


I'm in the process of pimping my blog. It's been a long time coming. It's not anything cool yet, but at least I've got the temporary banner up. I'll work on it some more in the future and make it all smooth like. In the meantime, enjoy the banner.

A few thoughts.

Marissa says that there's no school spirit at Taylorsville. I can argue that, but I don't want to. For the purposes of this thought, we're going to accept that statement as fact and proceed under the assumption that no, there is no school spirit at Taylorsville.

My brain looks at this and says, "Why not?"

It's a lack of communication. That's the only reason.

TVTV isn't reaching the masses. Nobody watches it. The Announcements might as well be given in Swahili, no one can hear them.

We have no idea what's going on. We don't know why the administration insists on doing things the way they do. We don't know we're supposed to go to the meeting in the career center. I have no idea, and that's the problem.

Would increasing the level of communication between the office and the students have a direct impact on school spirit? I sure think so. What's the easiest way to boost the level of information flowing from the top? Make kids watch TVTV. Enforce it.

It has been said that the Media's job is not to tell people what to think, but merely to tell them what to think about. If students have to watch TVTV, they are influenced to think about Taylorsville.

Honestly. I think that'd do it.

It's not like there's no reason to have school spirit. There are reasons out there. We're a good school. ---> I've always believed that truth is the ultimate defense.

When you want to sweep a girl off of her feet, what do you do? You tell her the truth. You tell her exactly who she is to you and how she makes you feel. You tell her all the things you think about when she walks by and all the things you always wish you'd said but never had.

If that fails to sweep her off her feet, then you didn't deserve to sweep her anyways.

But there is no room for anything less than absolute truth in these regions. Truth is all you need. Anything else is a mockery and plain stupid. It'd be like using a metal spoon when you could use a baseball bat.

The truth is all you need. TVTV gives the truth. We just have to watch it.

At this point it's impossible to watch it. Students are too loud. Even if I wanted to I couldn't. It would take teacher facilitation.

There'd have to be work on TVTV's side as well. They'd have to present a good clean show that wasn't overbearing. They'd have to present the truth. They'd have to be on top of stuff.

That's how you fix school spirit. You enforce TVTV. A simple measure. You do it, you'll see school spirit bounce by 50 percent.

Why? Because I think I'm always right, that's why.



But I actually believe what I said up there. School spirit is just the scape goat though. It's really a much deeper concept here.

In fact, there are several concepts at play.

The biggest one is the classic flow of information concept. It goes like this:

The greater the flow of information, the better off the world is.
When people have information they are empowered to make better choices. When people make better choices their lives become better.

When information is restricted individuals lose their power.

Maybe that's why I love wikipedia.

And maybe that's why I don't think China will ever win.

Because China restricts information. And that's bad.


Why do I go to school?

I go to learn.

I've seen a lot of people this past month that are missing the point in school. Maybe they aren't missing the point. Maybe they're just missing my point.

They've got their agency, they get to choose what they do. But.... why enroll in precalc if you're not going to try to learn precalc?

If you're behind: ask questions.

You're not dead because you got behind. Just ask questions.

Ask for help. If you say "Thatcher, can you help me understand this?" By all means, I'll try to help you understand it. Brad asked the other day. So I'm gonna try to help him.


I'm pretty passionate about education. I believe it's the reason we're alive. I get in to it. I'm going for it. That's my number one priority right now. I'm going to school to learn. I understand that I need to graduate, I understand that running track is a good idea.

But my education comes first. If education means giving up track, then that's what I'll do.

Of course, education doesn't mean giving up track. It's a hypothetical situation.

But really now. Education. Get into it.

If you're burnt out and need a good discussion about it ---> come talk to me. I'm all about education.


Money. I need some of that.

Life is expensive. I always knew it, but I never really factored it into my life. This summer I'm going to get a job. That's high priority. I think that's higher priority than summer CC.

And summer CC is pretty high priority.

Why am I going to get a job? Because money now is going to help me make money later.

So what's the plan? I'm going to live frugal. I'm going to work like mad. I'm going to save like mad. I'm going to sit down and make a concrete plan in the near future. Right now it's all just an abstract, but I've got to get something figured out.

I talk about getting a job a lot. I don't get jobs a lot. Hmm.


I get the feeling that science knows a lot more about the way that mice work than about how humans work.

Every day you hear about new research about how chemical Y has this effect in lab mice, and that could mean that it might have this effect in people too.

But we're not sure about the people.

The mice we're positive of though. If anybody had a pet lab mouse with all sorts of cancers, oh man. We could save it.


Have I had a post named strontium before? I think I have.

What is it about Strontium that makes it such an appealing title to me? Big S. Little r. Atomic number of 38.


Here I am. It's 12:14. What do I wish for, what do I hope for? Where do the comma splices end and the real genuine feelings begin? There is a person behind all the writing. Here I am. Actually thinking, actually feeling. This is me. I'm right here.

I've got this thing about respecting the past versions of me. I know that I feel the way I do right now for a reason. Certain parameters have been met that have placed me precisely where I am right now. This is me at 12:17.

And so here I am. Just here. Not there yet. Only here.

Who's here with me? Where am I going? Who will I be when I get there?

Friday, March 09, 2007

Historical Accuracy

Remember the Doodle Project I talked about forever-long ago? I love doodles, so tonight I finally set up my pseudo-studio and took pictures of all my good doodles for the past two years.

It was a shoddy process, one that could have been entirely avoided with a scanner. That's on my list of things to buy once I'm rich.

In the meantime, I hope you enjoy the doodles. Remember, click to enbiggen.

Medicine Man. Ink on lined paper. AP English, March 8, 2007

I drew this today. I really enjoyed sketching with a pen, it's something I've never really done before. I finally got perspective to work on this, sort of.

Jenghis Khan. Pencil on lined paper. Sophomore World History

This is Jenghis Khan. It's Genghis Khan's lesser-known step son. He probably likes boys. He's a fairy, but not the magical kind- the feminine kind. Inspired by the one and only MJ, and his constant artistic interpretation of the pronunciation of historical figures' names.

Holy Roman Nick: HRN. Pencil on lined paper. Sophomore World History

Who needs the Holy Roman Emperor when you've got Holy Roman Nick? It's not the best photograph, but the detail on this man is amazing. He's got laser beams for eyes, a giant sword, and Hanes of ownage. He stands at something like 296 feet tall. That makes Kyle look like Eric.

Fshaw! Pencil on lined paper. Sophomore World History

There's a really cool story behind this one. It's still one of my favorites. The expression on that face just kills me, and the fact that she's got scissor-fingers on that one hand is just too good. The handwriting is exactly representative too. All in all, pretty much the coolest thing to ever come off of one of my pencils.

Fan Man. Pen on lined paper. AP Junior English. March 8, 2007

Another one I drew today. I wanted to do something with more of a radial feel. I ended up with a guy leaning back, so I added the fan to give him a reason. The antlers are sort of cool. This is pretty unlike anything else I've ever done, and I like the originality.

Dictator. By Kyle. Pencil on lined paper. Sophomore World History.

What happens when you get a dyslexic dictator? Why, a potato with a bad mustache of course.

Fuzzy Ninja. By Nick. Pencil on lined paper. Junior Year Math.

Nick drew a ninja. The picture came out fuzzy, but it's pretty cool. He's totally holding ninja stars. I think it represents the movement for Women's Rights, what do you think?

Uncle Sam Ownage. Pencil on Lined. Sophomore World History.

Yeah, that's Uncle Sam with a flame thrower. You want a piece? Yeah, I didn't think so.

Warrior Ultimate. Pencil on lined paper + Photoshop. 1st quarter AP American History Junior.

Warrior Ultimate needs a good logo. This was the closest thing I could come up with. It evolved from at least a month of random doodles and brainstorming. I drew it on the back of a note Kyle sent me in Rockwell's, and I've been holding on to it since because it was so cool. By now it's all smeared and smudged, so I took the picture and then traced a bit in photoshop. I think I'm going to work on this a lot more in the near future.


And there you have it. I'll be doing a lot more doodles, and hopefully throwing them up here when I get the chance. I'm really excited to draw with a pen, that was really fun.

If you'd like your doodles to be featured (which I would really really love) throw them at me one day during school. It will be a party.

Happy Thursday everybody. Good luck with Friday.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Back Yard

These are all shots I took a few weeks ago in my back yard. This is the pine tree from below. Notice the pretty tree.

This really typifies my backyard. It's a tire with stuff that grew on it.

Part of my brother's old car that is now gone. That's all that remains of it. It just sits there, under the tree. Amidst all the life and growth, it just seems so right. That chunk of metal belongs there. It makes the scene.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007


I gave my sister a stapler submerged in Jello for her birthday.

I'm not gonna lie; it was pretty cool.

Monday, March 05, 2007

The Truth About Girls (By: My Brother)

The Truth about Girls

With caution and care,
to my love did I walk,
with style and grace,
these words did I talk.

I looked in your eyes,
to see if it's true,
to see if you love me,
the way, I love you.

A stunning reply,
came from her face,
but quickly it changed,
to shame and disgrace.

With a quick swing of her arm,
and flick of her wrist,
she knocked me a big one,
with her cold metal fist.

I had but one strike,
still two left to go,
I approached her again,
this time more slow.

I wanted a kiss,
if not just a hug,
instead she offered
another hard slug.

She grabbed my limp frame,
I liked it at first,
things rapidly changed,
and turned for the worst.

I tried hard to run,
and shouted for mom,
she finished me off,
with a big power-bomb.

This story I tell,
to inform each of you,
girls are robots,
it's really quite true.

It is clear they are programmed,
to tell all men "no".
They taunt us profusely,
then to the restroom they go.

But what can we do,
with these androids of death?
They have but on weakness,
their last dying breath!

Tell them they're nice,
and pretty and fun.
Butter them up,
and a victory you've won.

Just don't forget,
the words I have said.
If you fail to listen,
dang pal, you're dead!

-Nathan Thatcher (Legends XVII, Literary Magazine, 1999)

Sunday, March 04, 2007

The fourth short post

I know. Lots of short posts. Sometimes even two in one night. Why don't I just edit the last one? Because I'm way too cool for that, that's why.

On the off chance that someone missed this, here's my article that ran in the February issue of the Warrior Ledger.

I'm sorta proud of it. It's the first time I've really been published in a medium that large. It was a super cool feeling to have people all over the place commenting on what I had said. People were actually reading my stuff; thinking about my stuff. It was cool business.

Moral of the story: Wash your hands.

Click Survey

I tried explaining this click survey to a few people tonight. It sure didn't work, so I'm just going to post it.

It's really cool. You click on something, and it tells you where you clicked, and where everybody else clicked. The patterns are very interesting indeed.

I love seeing data graphically. There's something very eloquent about having enormous amounts of information being placed right in front of you for consumption in mere seconds. Patterns and trends are so readily apparent.

I love graphs. Not a day goes by that I don't think "Oh man, if I were to graph this, it'd totally follow this pattern...."

In fact, one of the cool posts I've been planning on for what feels like a half year is my Life Graphs post. It's basically where I sit down one day and figure out all the graphs that I can create out of my life. I'd have an energy graph, where I wake up at little energy, then gradually work my way up to a steady line during school, then totally die during the afternoon, and then shoot way way up at night time. See, I could have skipped that last run on sentence and just displayed all that information graphically. It would have made more sense and stuck with you.

Man. I love graphs.

But it doesn't just have to end with graphs. There are hundreds of ways to display information. That's something I really really enjoy- finding new ways to effectively transmit data. It's all about the communication. Nontraditional media is the coolest, and oftentimes the most efficient. Other times it's not.

The important thing is that it's really really really cool. I love business like that.

My tentative schedule for next year: (tell me what you think)

AP Calc
Ap Calc
Ap Psych
Adult Roles
AP English (or maybe humanities)
Concert Choir/Seminary (If concert choir works out schedule wise, I'll be taking early morning)

In order to graduate with that schedule, I'll have to test out of Comp tech and take health online. Plus write a letter to my counselor telling them to change journalism to a CTE credit.


Indubitably indeed.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

An Announcement


TMNT (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) comes out on March 23. It's rare that I'll pay full price for a movie. I'm gonna pay full price for this movie.

Dang straight.

The music you've been waiting to hear

ATWC is back. With Techno.

Yeah, it's a little rough, but we're proud of it. We're pretty interested in pursuing something along these lines in the future, employing what we learned in making this one.

Honestly, we could make a really cool techno song. That's for another day. For now, enjoy the Handiwork of Me, Brad, Nick, and Jaron.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Hats off to February

Eat my shorts February. You're dead, and I'm not.

For the first night in what feels like forever I've got all my homework done. The last several weeks have seen me getting *almost* all my homework done. I've always been missing one subject. The actual subject varied, but it was always there.

There's nothing worse than going to school unprepared. You know that there's trouble coming. You're trying to find time to do it. You've either got to squeeze lunch or shaft an easier class.

Not today, oh no. I've got it all done. History, English, Chemistry. All y'alls are done.

I'm proud of myself, I'm not gonna lie. I had a good chance to call it quits, and I didnae. I kicked that homework's butt. I owned it. I made it mine. My name is all over it.

I have a huge post to write. I've had a huge post to write for a week now. I've never sat down to write it though. I'm going to write it tomorrow I hope.

I want to hang out with girls sometime this weekend. Last week failed at that task, it was sorta sad business.

We're having a hairy-leg appreciation day. Everyone's invited. Except for Eric.

Just kiddin'. Eric can come if he wants.

I'm a champion, I got my homework done. February tried to kill me.

I didn't try to kill February. But now it's gone, and I'm still here. Congratulations me.