Food Inc

I’ve been on this enormous health kick lately. For a few reasons; I’m getting older and I worry about heart attacks and I’d eventually, one day, like to take my shirt off in public and not be ashamed of what I look like. I know, I know. I shouldn’t be. I am who I am and God made me this way so I should just roll with it. Maybe God did make me this way but there isn’t anything wrong with trying to improve things. I.E. my weak little bird chest.

I joined the Army at 135 pounds nearly 15 years ago. I came out of basic training weighing approximately 165 pounds. I went to Iraq weighing 180 and came out weighing 205. I met up with a guy I knew from the reception unit at Fort. Riley and all we did was lift weights in Iraq. I put even more weight on during my recruiting tour and left the Army weighing 230 pounds.

Now I’m 226 and have been eating about as healthy as I’ve ever eaten in my life. I have great muscle definition and my back and shoulders have just exploded since I’ve been on the #TeamHercules workout. Here’s a small sample of what I’ve been doing in the gym:

 

 

And here’s the actual workout regime on a particular muscle group:

 

chest

 

It’s hard work. Going to the gym every day and eating healthy requires a ton of discipline and self control. There are a lot of outside influences that are constantly pulling at me to just say eff it and go to Taco Bell or something for dinner instead of coming home and doing what’s right by my body and cooking a real mea. Yeah, you can’t be lazy.

I recently watched a documentary about food. Click here to watch it.

 

It’s a little liberal so beware- but it has good information about where our food comes from.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

World Issues

As I sit here on this mid-afternoon, warm day in July sipping on my coffee in the confines of my own apartment living area, it literally astounds me of the issues in America. On a much grander scale, world issues are much more complex and serious than some of these trivial problems we Americans encounter daily.

Kendall Jones- Who is she? But firstly, who cares who she is! The memes, tweets and Facebook posts I’ve seen about this girl literally blow my mind how wrapped up our society is over some Texan cheerleader going on wild hunting adventures. Her main goal is to probably get some media attention and a reality show (like everyone else). How clique and boring.

Hobby Lobby- This issue actually had to be address by congress. Sad. It kind of reminds me of the whole steroids in baseball thing that was tied up in congress for months on end (which, by the way, didn’t solve a f**king thing because players are still getting popped regularly for performance enhancing drugs. Not to mention it was a total waste of money). Businesses/corporations don’t seem to have any freedoms anymore. Target can’t tell its customers who carry guns around to not carry guns around and Hobby Lobby can’t tell it’s employees it will not provide birth control within the benefits unless they get some official ruling from the government. Hobby Lobby is a known religious business. People know this.

Furthermore, Hobby Lobby is a joke. It’s pretend religious values make me sick. They buy the majority of their product from a country (China) who has a strict one-child law which in turn forces families to have abortions (which China seems to be totally fine with) and they invest in companies that make the very conceptive they’re against! If you didn’t know any of this, you’re an idiot.

Benghazi- still hearing about this, although, mainly in meme fashion on Twitter and Facebook, it’s still tired and old. Blame former President Bush who released a “terrorist” (Abu Sufian Bin Qumu) responsible for Benghazi from GITMO years back- oh, and President Obama apparently drone-striked his ass. So he’s dead now.

Gays, Guns, and Sarah Palin- There are millions of non-religious people in this world, most of whom don’t care anything about what others believe in and vise versa. So the religious teachings of this “one man, one woman” thing doesn’t exactly apply to everyone. Get. Over. It.

Guns aren’t going away any time soon and for most of us that’s a blessing. For the other half who hate guns, well, this is America. Or ‘Merica, rather. President Obama is not trying to steal your guns away but if you walk around with an open carry side arm/rifle strapped to your back, expect some police attention and try not to act too much like a douchebag when the cop wants to check things out.

I wish Sarah Palin would go away. She’s a mental burden on our country and she’s making those who listen to her more dumb every day. If you’ve ever invested any time paying attention to her, please walk off a cliff now. You’ll be doing our society a giant favor by purging yourself from the world and not being able to spread her idiotic-ness.

 

 

‘Merica, right?

Open Carry

Target is now asking their customers to leave their guns at home and joining a long list of other retail stores that are doing the same thing.

Whether you agree with Target or not, there are a couple things to consider; we live in a pretty diverse world now. We aren’t so black and white anymore. We are divided, opinionated, and free thinkers. We believe in different things, we support differences and we typically aren’t always in agreement with each other. With that being said, not all customers want to walk into a Target or a Starbucks and see a bunch of gun-toting civilians walking around with assault rifles and handguns on their hips. By a legal standpoint, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. Which I am in agreement with. By a society standpoint, it induces panic, creates chaos and stirs the pot.

For the record, pretty much wherever I go I carry my P95 Ruger 9mm handgun concealed under my shirt or jacket. Nobody knows I have it. That’s the point with a concealed weapon. I don’t want people to know I have it on me. And I certainly don’t go around flaunting the fact that I am armed. I served in the United States Army for ten years, I’ve fired and trained with multiple types of weapons from 9mm handguns to M16 rifles. I have had the training and I occasionally put a few rounds down range to make sure I am up to par on my shooting skills. I’m not as dedicated with my firearms as I’d like to be but I make sure they are clean and serviceable at the very least.

The big question I have for some of these open carry activists is this; what’s the point of carrying your weapons around in open carry status? To say that you can? To say you are simply exercising your rights as a U.S citizen? How about exercising a little bit of common sense and good judgment. We don’t live in a world of kitty cats and rainbows anymore. We have school shootings almost weekly in this country, we have armed subjects shooting at cops, etc. And if that’s your argument to open carry; that you’re afraid of becoming a victim, then that’s what you need to promote. Aside from that, some training (not just plinking beer cans in the woods training, either) would also suit you. Try some combatives training, maybe some close quarters urban training with your firearms, too. Walking around with a rifle strapped to your back wearing flip flops and a boonie hat through Walmart trying to get the attention of management and the local cops doesn’t help your cause.

Target, and like many other retailers that aren’t on board with the whole walking-around-the-store-with-guns, aren’t exactly taking anyone’s “rights” away, either. Private businesses have the right to refuse service to anyone. Including you. You aren’t special. Nobody cares that you’ll no longer be shopping at Target because they don’t allow assault rifles inside the store. Mind you, this is a carefully strategically thought-out statement issued by the companies regarding no more guns in the stores. They didn’t just spring up one afternoon and say, “hey, no more guns”. That’s now how it works. Of course the sales strategy is taken into consideration because they don’t want to lose business. If they knew that issuing this kind of statement would hurt the companies sales, they wouldn’t have issued it.

Your rights are important just like anyone else’s. You saying you have the right to walk around with a gun and no one can tell you differently make you look like a self-absorbed hypocrite. Target can refuse you just like you can refuse them. You don’t like their rules? Don’t shop there, right?! This is still America last time I checked.

 

We need to try to keep guns out of the hands of these morons:

 

 

Lastly, trying to gain the attention of local law enforcement makes you look utterly foolish. Why go looking for it and then complain and whine when they come after you? That’s called being childish. Law enforcement has a job to do and when they get 911 calls regarding someone “walking around with a gun” they have to respond. Like it or not, that’s what they have to do. Most people who call 911 are panicked and probably say things like, “there’s a guy walking down the street with a gun.” Most 911 calls probably don’t go something like, “Hey, I see this clean shaven American citizen with a .45 caliber handgun securely fastened to his hip while walking down the street. He looks like he is legit, probably just walking around exercising his 2nd Amendment rights but I thought you’d like to know.”

Otherwise, prepare to be owned by the cops:

 

 

 

 

Memorial Day

I joined the United States Army with encouragement from family and friends.

I joined the United States Army on my own accord.

Actually joining the service was the toughest part. It’s a mystery what happens after you sign the papers. Joining the unknown.

Where do we go from here? What happens next?

Basic Training wasn’t “tough” or “scary” once you get used to the routine. There was a lot of yelling and running. We were nervous boys slowly turning into men. What’s so scary about that?

I wasn’t told what to do every waking moment in Basic. There were times when I had some down time to think about stuff.

We walked a lot. Everywhere we went, we walked. Was it hard? No. The days were just long. We just did what we had to do to get the day completed. That’s all.

Eventually, Basic Training ended and we were real soldiers.

Every day in the Army was pretty much the same. Get up, go exercise, go eat breakfast, go to work, work and then go home.

We weren’t marched around like minions or told to shut up all the time. We had jobs to do and we did them. Mine was working on tanks and it was pretty awesome most of the time.

If you screwed up or slacked off, you’d get called out on the spot. Maybe some push ups or maybe yelled at. It all just depends on who your leader was. I worked for and with some pretty great people in my career.

Once you reach NCO things change quite a bit. Life gets a little more complicated and you’re expected to know more and have more responsibility. But you’re within a brotherhood of Non Commissioned Officers and that was the really cool thing about it. You could talk shit to other Sergeants and laugh about it.

Combat wasn’t what I expected it to be. I expected less death because we had all this awesome equipment. Those insurgents are pretty tenacious though. I expected to be involved more and help out a lot more than what I actually got to do.

I volunteered to go on missions as much as my leadership would allow. I’m not a hero and I just did my part as best as I could. I wasn’t out on the front lines as much as I wanted to be and I would’ve traded my life for any one of those soldiers on any day while I was in Iraq. And that’s not a lie.

Coming back from combat was different. I felt different. I felt used and beaten down.

Recruiting sucked and ended my career. We had such shitty leadership who didn’t care about the welfare of the soldiers. It was like a nightmare that never ended.

I miss my Brothers. I joined the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association thinking I would find that connection like I had in the Army. That feeling is rare, I suppose. If they had a “Nomad” chapter, I would join that.

Happy Memorial Day, everyone. I hope your weekend is a good one.

(Hashtag) Seattle May Day Protests

My life is pretty simple. I live a pretty simple life. Simply put, my life is simplified to the highest degree of simple. I buy what I need, I use things until I can’t use them anymore and I am frugal with my money, my resources and my time. That’s not to say I’m some tight-wad with an agenda to force everyone to live like I do. And I certainly don’t shop at Wal-mart. I’m not THAT frugal.

To get on with my point; I watched the Seattle May Day protests. Again. I usually tune in annually to see what kind of destruction these people cause to the great city of Seattle. It’s actually an international day of protest. A lot of people are against the rioting, the protesting, the destruction of a city and the vandalism caused to peoples’ things.

Store fronts like Nike Town and Macy’s endure most of the destruction. These so-called “big chain corporations” are always under scrutiny due to their high prices, low wages ratio. I share no opinion whether I’m for or against these companies for one reason; sometimes I buy my stuff there and how hypocritical would I be if I were to dawn my black hoodie and go bash in some store front windows and then go buy some shoes from Michael Jordan?

To me, these protesters are cowards. What do they really stand for in comparison to Bradley Manning, Julian Asange and Edward Snowden. Those people are the real heroes. Those people are the ones sacrificing their lives, their families, their friends…

“How hardcore are you, Seattle May Day protester guy? How serious can we take you? You come out once a year to walk on ONE DAY, a day that is pre-determined already by the government, a day that Seattle Police are expecting you. They mark their calendars every year on this day like clock-work expecting YOU. Then tomorrow you’re back picking up your boring, mediocre nine-to-five job.

You dust off your Anonymous mask once a year and come out cursing and yelling for your 3 hours of fame.

It’s going to take a lot more than bashing in Nike Town’s store front window to show the government you’re not playing around. It’s going to take a lot more than kicking some random dudes BWM car door to show McDonalds you want $15/hr and that you’re unhappy with government greed and slave wages. It’s going to take a lot more than one day out of the year to show President Obama and his lackeys that you mean business.

I’m all for anarchism and keeping the government small and manageable and out of my life as much as possible. I see your point and it’s valid. But your means are weak and lame.

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Religously Commercialized

I went to church today. It was Easter so I decided why not. I’m labeled an Atheist by society because technically I don’t believe in a higher power. It’s more or less still unproven. I have a lot of questions regarding religion and I’ve never met a person who could really answer my questions.

I don’t get my hopes up when it comes to religion like it’s going to be some amazing, life changing event in my life. Why? Because human beings run religion and human beings ruin everything. Religion is no different. The church I attended today was heavily commercialized. There were hoards of people wandering in; some dressed highly inappropriate for an Easter service. I saw young females in tight mini-skirts, kids barefoot, women wearing belly shirts and men practically still wearing their pajamas.

Once inside there was two huge tables for free coffee and small shops off to the right so people could buy all sorts of stuff. While I was gazing in my disbelief, I was rudely bumped into my some guy who didn’t even bother to turn around and say “excuse me” or “I’m sorry”.

Further inside the auditorium where the service was actually being held, the noise was so loud I could barely hear myself think. Then, of course, what Easter service wouldn’t be complete without a full-on rock concert, right? I read somewhere in the Bible about being humble in the presences of God and then that one story where those dudes were trying to sell a bunch of stuff in the Temple and Jesus freaked out and tossed a few tables exclaiming religion isn’t about profits and money. Hey, I’m an Atheist. What do I know.

The problem is when something (like a certain brand of religion) gets too large it becomes disorganized and unmanageable and then your product is reduced in quality. Wal-Mart is a good example of this and so is the Christian religion. It has become too large therefore it starts to drift from it’s original meaning and message.

Sadly, I was not impressed by the super-church I visited today. I feel as though the quality of people within the walls of the church or too commercialized and don’t really understand the true meaning of why they’re there. Hey, let’s rock out and take selfies and carrying around our designer Starbucks coffee cups right before service. What happened to dressing conservatively, walking in quietly, sitting down and listening to the Pastor?

We’ve simply outgrown ourselves.