What wasn’t said at the Olympics

I was watching the men’s ski halfpipe yesterday, although it was somewhat passively since I can’t really tell the difference between all the insane tricks they do. After one of the skiers completed a run a microphone and camera were rushed to him, as is custom for the Olympics. The commentators made it clear this was an exceptional performance (I wouldn’t know because, like I said, they all look incredible, and yet similar, to me) so the skiers reaction after finding out he took over the top spot? An enthusiastic, “Oh my goodness!”

I thought, “Well, that’s curious.” I’ve grown so accustomed to hearing “Oh my G-d” that when this guy didn’t say that, I was surprised.

Fast forward one or two more skiers and there was a pretty hard crash. The athlete landed on the icy top corner of the halfpipe and it looked bad. The camera cut to a two shot of a pair of skiers (including “Oh my goodness” guy) who had already made their run and “Oh my goodness” guy looked down towards the snow.

Then I thought, “Something’s up with this guy.” I knew in my heart when he looked down, he was praying. I could just tell, and I really hoped it might be the case that he’s a Christian. So I went to the internet and Googled his name…

David Wise.

Yep, he’s a youth leader at his church in Reno, Nevada. The more I read, the more I was encouraged by his approach to life and life as a skier. I could go more into it, but this article will give you a good glimpse into his story.

It’s really neat to notice something about someone, not based on what they do say, but also by what they don’t say.

Congrats to David on his gold medal. I applaud him for that and for his devotion to God!

-Out of the Wilderness

20 “Would You Rather” questions

Would you rather…

Taylor Swift F1 USGP Austin, Texas
image via Teen Zone Magazine

… hang out with Taylor Swift then go to a Kanye West concert or hang out with Kanye West then go to a Taylor Swift concert?

… have a third arm, or a third leg?

… be able to hold your breath as long as dolphins can (as long as 8 to 10 minutes) or be able to go without water as long as camels can (in winter, 6 to 7 months)?

… work in a coffee shop although you can’t stand the smell of coffee or work as a bartender although you don’t drink?

[for the women]… spend a day with the Pioneer Woman but you’re not allowed to talk to her at all or spend a day with Chris Hemsworth but you’re not allowed to look at him ever?

[for the men]… spend a day with LeBron James but you’re forbidden from playing basketball with him or spend a day with LeBron James but all you can do for 24 hours is play basketball with him, with no breaks?

… be extremely knowledgable about cryptocurrencies 5 years too late, so you’re treated as someone who’s behind the times, or be extremely knowledgable 5 years too early and be blown off as a fool?

… be able to draw really well or sing really well, but then you’re terrible at the other option?

… improve on something that already exists or invent something completely new?

image via ZeroHedge.com

… get a gold medal in something like curling or a bronze medal in something like figure skating (playing on the notion that curling and figure skating athletes are in completely different leagues)?

… only be able to hop like a frog wherever you go or have legs that don’t bend at all?

… have a poster of *NSync signed by the entire band you aren’t allowed to dispose of or bleach your hair blond for a year and when anyone asks, you’re required to say it’s because you’re a fan of Justin Timberlake’s *NSync days?

… fly to the moon and back but you’re not allowed to tell anyone ever or when anyone asks what you’re biggest accomplishment is, you must say “I drove to Kentucky once”?

… have an iPhone that works most of the time or an old flip phone that works all the time?

… only be allowed to talk like Yoda or only be allowed to talk like Charlie Brown’s teacher?

… debate against Ben Shapiro for 5 minutes or debate against Tomi Lahren for 10 minutes?

… be a character on the tv show Parenthood or a character on the tv show This Is Us?

… exist as a zombie in the world of The Walking Dead or be a recurring peasant… in the world of Game of Thrones?

… be part of a really great inside joke between you and you’re only two friends or have lots of people think you’re funny but don’t want to know more about you?

… be a vegan married to someone who eats anything or be someone who eats anything married to a vegan?

-Out of the Wilderness

Avoiding a “Talkative Tim” or a “Chatty Cathy”

The other day I ran into a friend of mine, one who could easily be considered a “Talkative Tim,” a “Chatty Cathy,” a “Wordy Wade.” If talking were in the Olympics, this guy would stand triumphant as a gold medalist…and he’d be talking to the silver medal winner next to him about how sturdy the podium is, why Kroger receipts upset him, or what Ryan Seacrest is up to these days, or if there’s time, all three of those topics.

For the sake of anonymity, let’s say I encountered my friend at the gym. The first time was fine. I get it, we’re both at the gym, we haven’t seen each other in a few weeks. OK, let’s talk about stuff. Eventually I was able to escape and get on with my agenda. Same time the next day, there he is again. The conversation somehow begins before I even knew it and there I am again, an introvert struggling to act interested in a story this guy would tell to a pole if it stayed in one place long enough. And poles usually stay in one place a long time, that’s what they do. But I’m not a pole, at this point I want to be in any other place! I know there are courteous ways of ending conversations so I do my best.

Well, that’s great, nice seeing you.

Well, let me know how that goes.

Have a good workout.

What’s that over there? *Run away when he turns to look*

This guy must be a pro because he blows through my “goodbye” signals like a Lambo on a straight road. Day 3 the same thing again. But this time, just like they did in The Cutting Edge, I can only think of one thing that’ll work. A last ditch effort. This is my Pamchenko moment. I slowly move away as we’re talking. Just the right combination of proximity (less of it) and a final thought might do the trick! I’m literally taking steps away from this two-some. Five feet. Ten feet. I’m now 20 feet away and think I’m in the clear. Phew, that was exhausting! Wait, what’s this? I’m a calf awkwardly hopping around because my feet are tied up. This “Conversation Cowboy” somehow roped me back in! I was 20 feet away!!!!!!! Dang, he’s good.

Have you ever had experiences like this? If you have any funny stories or successful exit strategies, tell me about it in the comments below!

-Out of the Wilderness



Is Superstore a super hit?

I keep seeing commercials for the NBC show Superstore. My impression is the show isn’t very good. Does anyone reading this watch the show? The season premiere airs in a week or so, and it’s an Olympic-themed episode. The Olympics ended about a month ago. So I’m guessing they shot the episode during the Olympics and thought, “Perfect timing!” But then, oh yeah, it’s not airing during the Olympics. Seems like a glaring error to me on the part of the producers/writers, etc. maxresdefault
But in a more broad sense, it just doesn’t make me laugh. The setup reminds me of the office; a bunch of employees who work in a setting where stuff goes wrong, with a boss that is not qualified to have that position. Only thing is Steve Carrell as Michael Scott nailed it, and I’m not  sure Superstore matches up with that level of humor… at least pre-Michael-Scott-leaving-The-Office.

So do you think the show will make it, or will it suffer the same fate as shows like The Muppets, Extant, and Undateable? Feel free to chime in below!


A Gold Medal and Lunch with the Governor!

Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine earning a gold medal during the 2014 Olympics. In fact, earning any kind of recognition at all wasn’t on my radar. But yesterday, among a select few, I bowed to accept a medal around my neck.
cupidschase6cupidschase7OK, it’s not an Olympic gold medal per se. But 1st place in my division came with perks. Namely, a medal that’s gold in color. I was speechless. Mostly because the woman who was speaking didn’t offer me the mic. The Cupid’s Chase 5k was a fun race even though Nashville weather is the true definition of bipolar. Snowing when the gun went off and sunny at the finish line.

The following afternoon I joined the Governor of Tennesseee for brunch at Cracker Barrel. OK, it wasn’t brunch with the Governor per se. But I was eating at the same time he was eating which means my Mama’s Pancake Breakfast came from the same kitchen as his meal. So that obviously makes us best friends. I would’ve showed him my gold medal but I didn’t want to hurt our friendship. To say this was a good weekend would be politically incorrect. It was a landmark weekend!
Governor Bill Haslam