Noise.

Posted July 12, 2009 by coveryourears
Categories: Uncategorized

“Gggrrrghhgssswwwsshhhggggrggg” says the fan as it whirrs and buzzes and pans back and forth, blowing air throughout our stuffy apartment.  Across the living room, another fan echoes the same cyclic language.  The swamp cooler, finally working, drones loudly in the hallway, pumping cool night air into the bathroom, bedrooms, and anywhere else that the current can reach.  The windows are open.  Cars occasionally whoosh by, and sprinklers go on and off throughout the neighborhood.  The floor creaks and moans when people walk by.  My roommate John breaths loudly as he sleeps on the couch nearby.  And there is the tap-tap-tappy-tap as my fingers click around, typing these words.

My apartment is noisy.

It’s a small price to pay for a comfortable temperature.  There was a horrifying two weeks when our swamp cooler did not work, only blowing hot air in from the stifling oven outside.  So it was turned off.  The temperature rose throughout the day as the sun pour through the windows.  We tried opening windows, blowing fans, even blocking the windows with massive peices of cardboard, trying to keep the sun and heat out.  The best we got was stuffy and warm.  I took cold showers without flinching.

But now the swamp cooler works, so the apartment is usually pretty comfortable.  And right now, it’s night time, so it’s Very comfortable.

Which is nice.

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Dear Christina

Posted June 12, 2009 by coveryourears
Categories: Uncategorized

I just want you to know, I finally caught up my reading on your blog.  I was sixty-six entries behind.

And then I felt really awful for not reading because of all the nice things you have said about me in the past three months.  So, to remedy the situation, I’ve decided to use the first blog that I’ve written in a very long long long long time to remind myself why you are a magnificent friend:

1.  Everytime you see me, you swear I’ve gotten taller (in all honesty, it’s you who is shrinking).

2.  No matter how ridiculous our adventures are, you are still somehow willing to go on the next one.

3.  You’re still my friend even when I wear Skechers.

4. Even on your worst days you still pull off “grungy” clothes.

5. You care about things not because they’re trendy causes, but because you actually care, and in doing so continually inspire me to give a damn.

6.  I’m not sure how many other people would realize that I had driven them an hour in the wrong direction, almost ended up in Maryland, and just laughed about how silly “we” were and didn’t demand I take them home.

7.  You swear you’ll never act again and let me convince you to break your promise.

8.  You sing beautifully and let me use it to write fun songs with you.

9.  You speak french without sounding pretentious-with-a-head-cold.

10.  I can always count on an honest opinion. 🙂

11.  Sometimes you worry about sharing beauty and art with others, but you’ve introduced me to some of the most beutiful songs and films and artwork that I’ve ever seen in my life.  And I’m greatful.

12.  Somehow I don’t think little of you even though you use weird things like twitter 😉

13.  You smile in your pictures…  (I tend to make weird faces).

14.  You’re a good friend that I can confide in–even if it takes a while; but even then it’s ok because it feels like you’ve known for forever.

15.  Your sense of fun and spontaneity is delightfully cnotagious.

16.  Even before we were good friends, our previous interactions are still worthy of nostalgia (that one day… in DC… when I first moved to VA… and it was cold… and Amanda thought I liked you…)

17.  Whenever one of us is having a bad day, we can swear together.

18.  Who else will I walk 35 minutes both ways to come and visit?

I’m sure there are more, but I either have to get really specific or sound redundant.  So I’ll stop now.  Maybe more later…  if you behave. 😉

your stateside friend,

David Jon Banks

Caffiene is my antidrug

Posted April 1, 2009 by coveryourears
Categories: Uncategorized

saw this video today (Hilarious, I must say):

Valley 3 News: BYU Brings Caffeine to Campus from Jimmy Newell on Vimeo.

Freshman year of college (last year) I wrote a paper for my english class on a very similar subject. Thought I’d include it here:

“Whine-bibbers

The Word of Wisdom is one of the most popular and well-known doctrines of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. One of its most disputed verses reads as follows: “And again, [caffeine] drinks are not for the body or belly” (D&C 89:9). Wait a minute; that sounds awfully silly! Even so, this is exactly the way many Mormons interpret verse nine of the Word of Wisdom, which warns against the use of hot drinks. Do they presume to suggest that not only did the prophet Joseph Smith proclaim the existence of the chemical “caffeine”, but that he accurately predicted what future scientists would name it? It is, in fact, an interpretation, based on a few facts.
Recent prophets have defined the term “Hot Drinks” to mean, specifically, “coffee and tea”. Seeing as coffee and tea both contain somewhat substantial amounts of the chemical caffeine, many Latter-day Saints assume that caffeine is the sole reason that coffee and tea have been banned. This opinion is highly supported within the Mormon subculture, regardless of the fact that nowhere is it implied that caffeine is the reason for which coffee and tea have been condemned. Still, many church members are in the belief that cola drinks are directly against the Word of Wisdom. Even more incredulously, some students at BYU have put forth the absurd suggestion that caffeinated sodas should be explicitly forbidden by BYU’s honor code. It is in my opinion that although students may, themselves, abstain from caffeine drinks, they should not try and force their opinion on the rest of the student body. Anti-caffeine movements should not even exist.
Do they realize the implications that such an amendment to the Honor Code would introduce? There is far more at stake than the casual can of Coke or Pepsi. Excluding drinks containing caffeine would, logically, assume the offender is caffeine. So by eliminating caffeinated sodas, we would need to eliminate all substances containing caffeine. How many students like to cuddle up with their significant other on a cold, winter day and enjoy a cup of hot chocolate? GONE! Hot chocolate is an offender on two accounts. First it is a hot drink, and second, it contains caffeine. This would also eliminate all other chocolate products, including Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Bars, M&Ms, chocolate milk, Oreos, chocolate ice cream, etc. We should probably even eliminate vanilla ice cream as vanilla includes slight amounts of alcohol. And if caffeine is against the Word of Wisdom, we are all guilty if we have ever taken Excedrin to stop a headache (Excedrin Extra Strength contains 65mg of caffeine; a can of Mountain Dew contains 55mg of caffeine). BYU currently sells all of the above items.
The danger with caffeine is that when taken in large, frequent amounts, it can create a dependency, which affects sleep and other normal body functions. Then, following the same logic, we should take extreme cautions when dealing with other substances that can more easily create the same, or stronger, dependencies. Prescribed sleep medication, when used for a long period of time, can make it almost impossible to return to a normal, non-medicated, sleep cycle. Painkillers, prescription and over-the-counter alike, can be easily abused and cause addiction and even death. And don’t even start with antidepressants. A study by Julie Cart of the Los Angeles Times shows Utah, the Mormon capital of the world, as the leader of prescribed antidepressants in the country. Do not even try and suggest that every prescription of antidepressants is a legitimate psychological need. They are mostly abused by LDS women, the study shows, and hypotheses have suggested this is due to the need for Latter-day Saints to be “more perfect” than their neighbor.
Which brings us full circle back to the issue of caffeine! Mormons have a tendency to condemn others. They adopt a self-righteous attitude and tell themselves, “What she is doing is wrong; I’m not doing that; therefore I must be a good person.” (Being a member of the Mormon Church myself, I too will find myself making these same rationalizations. But recognizing fault is the first step to correcting it). Individuals in the church will choose to abstain from gray-areas in church doctrine, than proceed to judge every member they see who indulges in these “forbidden” practices. But we should understand there is a difference between personal righteousness and forbidding others due to our own interpretations on the gospel. Sometimes we don’t distinguish the difference between personal righteousness and self-righteousness. Self-righteousness is when we take a whisper of a rumor and adapt it as our personal rubric for determining the spiritual state of others.
But every whisper of a rumor needs a source to be the first to whisper. Where caffeine is concerned, that source is the book, Mormon Doctrine, by Elder Bruce R. McConkie. The widespread misconception is that his book is actual Mormon doctrine. It is, in fact, merely his opinions on Mormon doctrine. He even states at the end of his preface, “For the work itself, I assume sole and full responsibility.” Regarding the Word of Wisdom, he says, “there are many other substances which have a harmful effect on the human body, though such particular things are not specifically prohibited by the Word of Wisdom.” Of course, seeing the Word of Wisdom’s inability to specify, he takes that responsibility upon himself. “Certainly the partaking of cola drinks… is in violation of the spirit of the Word of Wisdom.” This quote is the source of contention regarding the Word of Wisdom for church members the world over. Though he does hold some authority being an apostle, we must realize that he is not the prophet, and cannot set forth legitimate doctrine for the church. Even as an apostle, his opinions must be taken with a grain of salt.
Mormon Doctrine should not be the singular source of our opinions. There are many church endorsed publications that make no mention of soda pop or caffeine at all, including For the Strength of Youth, True to the Faith, the missionary discussions, and the requirements for a temple recommend (I have read many stories of church members confessing their Pepsi consumption to their bishop and went to the temple that same weekend).
Elder McConkie is not completely mistaken in his comments. I assume he predicted the fanatics that his comments would inspire when he continued his discussion, “Some unstable people become cranks with reference to this law of health. It should be understood that the Word of Wisdom is not the gospel, and the gospel is not the Word of Wisdom” (emphasis added). Let this statement summarize the subject of my comments.
There is another apostle who had the opposite feelings regarding caffeinated drinks. While speaking at a stake conference about the Word of Wisdom, Elder Henry D. Moyle proceeded to pour himself a glass of Coca Cola and drink it while still standing at the pulpit. When he had downed the glass, he said, “I hope you understand the message.”
Let me include one more statement by Elder Bruce R. McConkie. Continuing his comments on the Word of Wisdom, he said, “…If some particular food or drink disagrees with an individual, then that person should act accordingly without reference to the prohibitions in this particular law of health.”
As Latter Day Saints, we should try not to simply follow the letter of the law. Similarly, we shouldn’t need everything spelled out for us. We should conduct our lives according to the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. If we develop a personal feeling that we should not partake of certain substances, that is perfectly acceptable. However, we should not try and force our own personal feelings on others. We should especially avoid looking down on others for doing things we believe are wrong. It is not up to us to judge the worthiness of our neighbors. There are more important things to focus our energies on than forcing our opinions on other church members. We should try and be more like Jesus Christ, and better our lives so we can return to him. Support and love are far more Christ-like than judging, condemning, and denouncing the faith of neighbors. Caffeine is not really that important when compared to the grand spectrum of the gospel. We need to focus on what is: family, temple work, callings, and charity. These things are the deserved subject matter of the Honor Code. Without them, the secular and spiritual learning environment of Brigham Young University would crumble. We seem to be surviving as a campus even with the presence of caffeine.”

widget test

Posted March 3, 2009 by coveryourears
Categories: Uncategorized

My Date With Jeremiah

Posted March 3, 2009 by coveryourears
Categories: Uncategorized

Sooooooooo I haven’t written on this thing in a really really long time. I will try and remedy that.

You see, I’m involved in a class at BYU where we’re producing a web series:  The Book of Jer3miah.   yes the three is intentional.  yes it is significant.  no i cannot tell you what it refers to.  (at this time)

anyway, i’m a writer and the art director for this show so that’s kinda cool, but it does mean that i’m spending about 40 hours a week on this 6 credit class and any down time is spent sleeping eating working or trying to pass my other classes.  Sometimes the out-of-class time is worthwhile, sometimes it’s kinda annoying.  :/

Like now.  We have help with a mass marketing effort.

Which means we have to:
update our facebook status 3 times mentioning the show
post links on facebook to the main websites of the show
Digg all of the episodes
follow five random BYU students on Twitter (like i ever use mine…)
update my Twitter Status with Jer3miah stuff 3 times (again…  i never really use it…)
ask 3 friends/relatives to add a Jer3miah Vimeo Widget to their blog
google Provo/BYU/etc and find blogs

basically i feel like any or all of my friends will now think that I’m using, abusing, and spamming them with my own creations…
which i’m not.  well, i am, but i’m doing it in the nicest way possible 😉

[this is where the widget would go if i could figure out how to make it work. just go to http://www.jer3miah.com to watch it]

just kidding, i do want you to watch it.  I’m putting all this time into it after all.  But if you don’t like it, or don’t watch it, it won’t hurt my feelings.  so don’t misinterpret my constant mentionings of this show as something to be pitied.  Unless you pity marketing strategies, then… go for it.  I guess.

Basically I hate spamming people and selling people things but at the same time I want people to watch the show so it’s really conflicting!!!

anyway, now i have to go be super-stalker and pick 5 BYU students, at random, to follow on Twitter.  And pester 3 of my blogging friends to put a vimeo widget in their blog.  just for me.  I’m running out of favors.

BUT if you like the show and want to support it, feel free to message me or comment and i’ll send you the code to put in your very own blog 🙂

i need a better life…  or one that actually pays.

i better get an A.

Popo…? more like Poo Poo

Posted December 27, 2008 by coveryourears
Categories: Uncategorized

Ihate when I don’t blog for a while, and then I don’t want to blog because I don’t want to have to do all the recap of everything since my last blog post, so then I continue to not blog until it’s been so long I can’t remember when or what I last blogged…

so now i’m blogging

I’m sitting in my bed at homehome in Virginia, in my old bed in the basement from when I lived at home; the bed with the dark navy sheets and two big pillows and the little pegs where it connects to an identical bedframe to combine into Voltron–I mean, a bunk bed.  It’s a little short so if I lay completely straight my feet stick out a couple inches, but since I sleep curled up anyway, it doesn’t matter.  It’s kind of cold in my room, and all I have is a sheet and a blanket (which admittedly portrays kittens and butterflies), but for whatever reason I have decided to not go get another or a thicker blanket.  So I guess I’m not really complaining.  Just observing.

Everyone is asleep, except my uncle chad and his girlfriend Kaleena, who have both come to VA from LA for Christmas.  So I guess this is a serious girlfriend.  Which is good, because Chad is turning 30 and he has yet to have much success when it comes to women.  I’ve decided that Kaleena must be God’s Christmas gift to my grandparents, a sign that their youngest child will, in fact, get married one day.   Kaleena and Chad are playing the Wii, which was my parent’s (I mean, Santa’s) Christmas gift to my three younger siblings (Chelsea and I are away at college and therefore wouldn’t have much time at the Wii, so we got printers instead).

Christmas was yesterday and it was a wonderful break.  I got some gifts…
a Nevada hoodie (that’s where Chelsea goes to school, in Reno)
a BYU blanket
an iPod radio transmitter thing
new watch
8G memory card for my camera
Stardust (the movie)
Pirates of the Caribbean (the first–and best–one)
some card games
a book about financing (from the dog… allegedly)
iTunes gift card
$60 for clothes
another CD wallet (my current one is full)
so getting new things is always a pleasant experience, plus the extended family–Chad, Kaleena, and the grandparents who had no clue Chad was dating until they walked in our house–made it all homey and Christmassy.  So I’ll call this year a success.

Oh, wait, I almost forgot one present:  a 300 dollar speeding ticket I recieved on Monday as I was running late to work.  37 in a 25 zone…  first time pulled over, first ticket ever… still, a little strong of a lesson in my opinion.
And then I got pulled again the next day.  Scott, Elizabeth, Michelle, and I had gone to DC to see the Christmas Tree and walk around and such, then decided to go to Georgetown in search of a place that was open that sold Hot Chocolate.  We were blaring Ozzy Osborne (Crazy Train) when we noticed the flashing red and blue lights behind us.  So we turned down the music, then turned it off, then ejected the CD and hid it in the glove compartment.  We had no clue why we were being pulled over.  Elizabeth was siting in Abigail’s booster seat and started freaking out that it might be because of her:  “I’ll pay for the ticket if it’s cuz of me, David.  I’ll pay for it.”  We were the second car in a very trafficky intersection, and we weren’t sure where to pull over, so I thought it would be best to pull over on the small street to the right. 
Nope.  It was a one-way street going the other direction.  So I turned back onto the road at which point the cop car beeped its siren and a cross black woman came on the loud speaker telling me to stop the car.  So I pulled behind the parellel-parked car directly in front of us and stopped. 
I was freaking out.  Both police officers came to the windows (Michelle was in the passenger seat, the window that the aforementioned angry black woman came to) and the officer at my window informed me that he was a member of the Georgetown Park Police and that I didn’t have my headlights on.
I gave him an “are you serious” look and glanced forward to the car we parked behind.  No reflection.  I looked down in the dark at the knob.  So that’s the off switch…  I forgot to mention that we were all in my mother’s mini-van.
I gave him my license and then Michelle and I began to dig through the glove box for the registration.  It was jam-packed full of fast food napkins, old receipts, CD’s, miscellaneous papers, etc.
Nice Police Officer:  “Is this your car…?”
Me:  “uh… no, it’s my mom’s” 
(finding a paper that looks like it might be registration and holding it up to the nice cop) 
“Is this it…?”
NPO:  “…no.”
Mad Black Woman:  “Did you not hear us tell you to pull over???!”
Me:  (still looking for registration)  “Yeah, but I wasn’t sure where to pull over–”
MBW:  “BEFORE the Intersection.”
Me:  “oh.  Sorry.”
Michelle:  “oh, here’s the registration”

Luckily for me, the nice police officer decided to let us off with a warning.  God bless him.

After that we decided to go back to Woodbridge.  We stopped at Dunkin Donuts for Hot Chocolate and called Christina, wanting to kidnap her.  She was at Target.   I asked a few innocent-sounding questions to make sure she’d be there long enough for us to get across town and then said good-bye as if we weren’t about to come find her.
Then we drove to Target.  We got there, found Christina’s father’s big blue van to make sure they were still there, then headed inside.  We snuck around for a while, not sure where Christina and her father might be.  Then we spotted them.  Actually, we walked right into the middle of the big main aisle 50 feet away from Christina and froze.  Luckily our targets were oblivious to us and walked the other direction.  We followed.  We followed them out of the store then across the parking lot to the big blue van.  Christina and her father got in, started the car, and we ran up to the front passenger window, startling both inside (particularly Christina 🙂
She came out and said hellos and gave hugs and I asked a few innocent-sounding questions to figure out that they were going to Walmart next and said good-bye as though we weren’t about to follow them to Walmart.
But we did anyway.  Michelle, Scott, Elizabeth and I had actually played hide-and-seek in Walmart two nights earlier, so we were well prepared.  We followed them, lost them, found them again, etc. for a pretty long time.  We kept calling Christina with Michelle’s phone (so she wouldn’t recognize the number) and Scott would say “where does Walmart keep the Baking Powder” and hang up.  So she guessed that we were there somewhere.  But still she didn’t see us, despite making eye-contact with Elizabeth twice.  Then Christina and her father left with small purchases and we watched the big blue van drive away.
Then we called her, fessed up, stole her from her house, and went to Shoppers to buy Baking Powder (we actually did need some, Michelle’s father called her and asked her to pick it up).  Then we had to take Michelle home, but Scott, Elizabeth, Christina, and I went to this iced over pond (the ice was like an inch thick!), tried to walk on it, failed, and then found a huge rock to throw into the ice from a cute little bridge.  It was a big splash, and we ran like headless chickens for the mini-van.

It was a fun night.

Then there was Christmas Eve, and I was working (Skechers) so that all of the procrastinators could buy last minute presents (though, why shoes make a good present I don’t know).  Then I went home, had dinner with my family, Chad, and Kaleena (g-parents weren’t due til the next day), and fell asleep, missing Muppet Christmas Carol and the ritual opening of one present each Christmas Eve Night before bed.
I had to be woken up the next day for Christmas Morning present opening.  Skechers wears you out…

I worked again today, a long, torturous shift, full of stupid people and foreign people, and people who make a big mess that I have to clean up over and over again and put the shoes in the wrong place so I have to play the “where the hell did this come from” game and I was SOOO ready to leave.

then I decided to blog because it’s been a while.  But… now I should sleep.  work again tomorrow.

BUSY BUSY BUSY!!!

Posted December 8, 2008 by coveryourears
Categories: Uncategorized

so… i’ve been pretty busy lately, and it’s been keeping me from blogging. Here’s the scoop:

First there was two weeks of casting for My Super Sweet Top Secret Class. I call it such because of the non-disclosures we had to sign the second day of class (I kid you not). In this class, a special projects class in the film department, we’re producing a web series. It’s going to be pretty sweet, let me tell you…
anyway, we did some casting for two weeks. tuesday, wednesday: auditions. kept me in the HFAC until 1 and 2 in the morning, respectively. The next week, tuesday: more auditions; wednesday: callbacks. similar late hours were involved. needless to say I was Dead Tired after all was said and done.

But it WASN’T all said and done. Because the following Monday, the monday before Thanksgiving, we filmed some screentests for the two possible actors for the main character.
What we did was film a short scene, twice, once with each actor. Three characters were involved: main character, side kick/best friend and a gun man. The main character and side kick were taken care of, and a guy on the crew was gonna be the gunman, but then he had to leave early and the director spun around: “ummmmmm–David. You’re the gun man.”
So I put on my dark black coat, and skulked around the basement of the HFAC with a very realistic looking fake gun. it took 18 takes to get the first shot done right. but not all of the redos were my fault…

found out inbetween the two shoots (the two different screen tests) that we were supposed to clear the prop gun with this guy named Frank. We also found out that if someone had seen the gun and called the police, they were supposed to respond as though it was an actual gun (can’t take any chances), so if whoever had the gun, i.e. me, had turned at the sound of the approaching police officers with the gun still in my hand, the cops would have shot me.

i had almost died.

i felt really nauseous. Apparently it had happened in St. George a little while ago, and at USC too.
I was already risking my life for this show. literally.

those who know me well would not be surprised.

I almost forgot to mention: the friday and saturday before this all-day shoot were spent at work. 5 basketball games in two days! and my job requires standing. On friday I stood in the same place for 7 hours! with a half hour break. But still. 7 HOURS! The next day was slightly better. I only had to stand 5 hours. In that exact same spot. I was soooo bored. but i got a nice paycheck on friday, so it’s ok.

After that horrible weekend, it was Thanksgiving Break! In SAN DIEGO!!! It was a wonderful vacation. It was a ten hour drive both ways, but somehow i didnt’ get that bored and my legs didn’t even fall asleep. I rode with a guy named Nathan, whose parents know my aunt and uncle (the ones who live in SD and invited me to come visit). We didnt’ talk much on the way down, but i was really tired after my 7am-10:30pm shooting day the day before. What we did find out, however, is that Nathan bought a car from my uncle for five dollars. This same car had been given to my uncle by my father. It was the car that brought me home from the hospital! Small World!
The weather was great, by the way. Not only did I wear t-shirts outside at night time, I slept with the window open. It was marvelous!
I ended up walking away with two new pairs of jeans, a hoodie-jacket, an argile sweater and a new scarf. I’m going to send a pair of jeans back, they’re skinny jeans and tall people + skinny jeans = high-waters.

This past weekend was spent in Tooele with my mother’s parents. Two vacation weeks in a row! I went with my grandmother to see Quantum of Solace (my grandfather never takes her to movies) and hung out with my black cousins. They’re less than 10 years old and are a little shy towards me, but who cares.

Now I’m back in Provo and I have SOOOO much to do this week, it’s crazy. But I’ve caught myself up on my blog, so that’s good.