Monday, May 25, 2009

I'm the kind of guy that laughs at a funeral

I finally experienced something this weekend that I knew was eventually inevitable, but I didn't want it to happen none the less. I had my grandpa's funeral. The first funeral I've had to attend of a family member.

But here's the deal.

We really weren't that close. not at all in fact. All my memories of grandpa consist of him sitting in his chair at home, while grandma took care of him. And then when I was in junior high, he got placed in a nursing home because grandma had gotten in a car wreck and so she was laid up for a few weeks and so she couldn't take care of him and he just stayed there and slowly went downhill. So, really I don't have any storybook/movie quality memories of my grandfather. NOT that they didn't happen, I've found plenty of photos that attest that they did. BUt they just happened too early for me to distinctly remember. So, while it is rather unfortunate that I can't look back and smile on good memories with grandpa. The honest and maybe somewhat morbid truth , is that it has made this process a whole lot easier.

We all knew it was coming though. The last month we had seen him in and out of the hospital and everytime it was the same thing. "well, he could go tonight. He could go next month" so we knew it was edging closer and when we got the call Wednesday morning, it was one of those "yea, he's in a better place now."

Through this whole process I really felt kind of bad actually. There were no tears, there was no empty sense of loss. It was simply a factual thing. Grandpa had died. And as the hugs and "I'm so sorry's" and the questions of "How are you doing?" began, I felt bad ,because I was A-OK fine.

It continued even at the visitation, my cousins, and older of my two younger sisters were all along the same line with it. We sat and conversed and joked about things like normal. And shared how we were all sad that Francis had passed, but didn't have any major emotional memories to really upset us.

But eventually the tears did come and I knew they would, at the funeral. I knew that when I saw my grandma crying or my dad tear up, I knew I would. And it happened. But it wasn't til the end of the funeral. When they had fufilled my grandpa's request he had made early on in life to have "bridge over troubled water" played at his funeral. That's when I cried. And when we were at the gravesite and the American Legion handed my grandma the flag and they thanked her for his years of serive in the korean conflict. And when I saw the tears fall down the face of my dad. My big tough, farming, jock, of a man who was your typical dude's dude who didn't show emotion or cry. And when I saw my two baby sisters crying. That's when I cried and I felt better. Knowing that I wasn't completely devoid of human emotion. But I also think what got me going was knowing that at some point, hopefully a long long way down the road, but at some point. I would be burying grandma or my dad and that's what really hit me. Because I know when that time comes, I will most definitally be one hott mess.

So, while this weekend had an overcast of gloom. It was actually a nice weekend. I got to all my Riebhoff family and 90% of it was spent laughing and joking. Which is good, because even though I don't have that many memories, I know that's they my grandpa would have wanted it.

Monday, May 11, 2009

So I'm cheating a little...

I'm slightly cheating with this "blog". This is an older article I wrote for the school paper awhile back. But some recent events made me think of it and so I thought I would share.

As an active member on Simpson's campus, I tend to notice what's going on. Each new year, I notice the changes that occur with the entering of a new class and the leaving of an old and the one thing that seems to stay the same.

There is an epidemic that somehow continues to plague our campus and effect the students.

Students with this plague seem to suffer from the following symptoms: the willingness to complain about the actions of student organizations without offering any advice as to what said student organizations could do instead; and a problem with the lack of school spirit, while their attendance at school events is minimal at best. Most victims have the ability to make students who are actually trying to change things, sometimes wonder why we even try.

An example that comes to mind is a recent purchase by the student government association. Members of SGA felt that the purchase of name tags would help us market ourselves better as an organization to not only the campus, and also come in useful when representing Simpson at other events. The cost for the name tags was right around $200, and some students were upset and complained that spending $200 on name tags was a horrible idea. However, the students offered no suggestion as to how we could better allocate the money.

My theory when it comes to complaining or talking about how something isn't working is that you should at least have a suggestion to take its place. Don't complain if you aren't willing to work to make a change.

Most students fail to realize that we are rather fortunate at Simpson. We have faculty, staff and administrators willing to listen to us. They are working hard to make Simpson a good experience for us and yet everyone still sits back and doesn't care. Then something happens and everyone gets upset and causes a fuss about it, but they don't care enough to actually try and do something about it.

Another big thing you hear everyone on campus talk about is the lack of school spirit Simpson College possesses and it slightly confuses me. I hear all these students complaining that no one goes to the game, no one has school spirit and no one cares. People talk about how more students need to go to this and that, but don't go themselves.

So here's my solution.Instead of skipping the game, saying you're not going because you know no one else is, shut up. Actually go to the game, and then your friend will go because she knows you're going, and then she brings another friend. The next thing you know, people actually are at the game. All because someone decided to try and remedy a problem instead of just complaining about it.

Now, while I am still quite a few years away from my PhD and have further research and testing to do before I can give an official diagnosis for this disease, I'm pretty sure I can offer some advice that could help prevent the spread and I'm taking it from Ghandi.

"Be the change you want to see in the world."

If you want things to change at Simpson, work to change them. If you want people to attend the games, go to the game yourself. If you don't want SGA spending $200 on name tags, tell them what they should spend $200 on.And if you don't care. If you don't feel like working and trying to make a change, then don't complain.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

When I Grow Up

In roughly a week and a half I will essentially be a college senior. It's hard to believe that I'm nearing the completion of my junior year of college! Even before I started Simpson I heard that college flys by and while I believed them, its still hard to grasp how fast it does until it actually happens. And I'm not even close to being ready to grow up and my term class is not making things any easier.

I've started to think a bit more about what I want to do after graduation and grad school has started to sound like a good idea. My NACA experience has been awesome and so I began to think about going for student development and maybe becoming a Rich Ramos. BUT the thing is, I don't really think I want to do that as a career. But I think the student development experience would be benificial in the long run.

I've also thought about traveling after graduation. Yesterday, in our may term class we met with a former student of Kedron's and she worked and lived in London for 6 months after graduation and so that would be really cool. Only I would probably do something like Austrailia or New Zealand, since I have done the London thing already. AND I've also thought about just trying to find a job. But I have no freakin clue what. I would love to do something in event planning relatedness but I have no clue where to look. Plus I'm starting to wonder if I am even capable of holding a real job and being responsible and that scares me.

Ugh. This May Term class has really thrown things off. Just because some of the advice we've gotten from meeting with these professionals has been really helpful and what Emily has done sounded really fun and I would love to do something like that. BUt then hearing some the leaders talk makes me wonder if I really am a decent leader or just one of those power hungry people who just likes being a leader. And I don't want to be one of those people. Then there's the talks about our generation and what we expect out of life and how more than likely we won't get all that we want and then there's the whole economy thing and ugh.

Anyway. Back to the grad school thing. It's weird having to look at grad schools. I feel like I'm back in HS only its harder, because I'm not sure what I want to study. I could do student development. Maybe journalism or it'd be awesome to find some sort of event/entertainment management program. And then there is the whole GRE thing. I haven't taken a math class since my junior year of HS.

But ugh. It's crazy and getting scary. Even though I know I have a year left, right now I really have no clue what to do. And then just thinking about being a real grown up in general is scary and I think thats partly why I would like to go back to grad school.

Then there's this summer. Thanks to my suck-tackular driving luck my car sucks and so my original plans for interning in Minneapolis are now cancelled. So I'm hoping I can get a job at TEC w/ Sarah as a counselor. It'd be fun to be a counselor again and not have to worry about as much.

Other than stressing out about the rest of my life, May Term is good and fun! It's hard to believe the year is almost over ;( I have alot of packing to do :S

PS-sorry this turned into a rant of a blog. I didn't think it would....oops :S

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Last night I lost my V-Card

So, as per usual. I drifted away from blogging and it has been a good 3 months since my last post.

And I really don't want to try and re think and fill you in on all the great happenings of the past 3 months; the stupid class projects for stagecraft, the job I thought I loved and now left, the car getting wrecked another 2 times and etc. So I'll just begin with some recent events.

As the title of the blog foreshadows, I lost my v-card last night. And no, I don't mean the romantic type v-card. Psh, I lost that awhile ago. I lost my concert v-card. Yep, true story. Up until last night i had never been to a legitimate concert. While I've enjoyed most of the music I've heard at NACA and our CAB events, I really don't consider them to be real life concerts. It was a fun time. About 8 of us took a drive out to Omaha to see a group called "Jukebox the ghost". They first saw them when they opened for Ben Fold when he was in Des Moines back in March. They're a fun energetic alternative band and have some pretty interesting songs. So, I'm glad I was able to give my v-card to such a deserving band.

In other news

It's currently May Term and I am ABSOLUTLY loving it! It's been an amazing great time. The weather could be a bit more cooperative and someone needs to twitter mother nature and let her know that she needs to make it nice. But today is a gorgeous day and so I'm happy. We played some mud volleyball earlier and it was great, sloshing around in a big pile of dirt and water.

And there's actually no new boy drama or news. I've been pretty tame and have been doing my best to avoid that whole scene and it is working out for me!

ANNNND you're pry wondering how I did with those new years resolutions I talked about in my last post.

HAHA, well obvi I have failed at blogging regularly. But I've actually done a somewhat decent job on the J&S gossip front. I bitch and gossip about them on ocassion, when good shit comes up. BUT for the most part I've taken the "eh you bore me" approach. AND I have definitally failed at the working out thing and am beginning to accept that working out will probably be something I will always fail at. At first the issue was I didn't have the time, but now it's May Term and I definitally have the time. I'm just lacking the will. BUT I still want to attempt at some point, we'll just see when that actually occurs.

Anyway. We'll stop there. hpefully, and know I've said this a million times. But I can get back into blogging and such.we'll see.