early ending.

11 07 2010

I went to my friend Paul’s ward today.

My ward starts at 12:30.
His ward starts at 11:30.
World Cup Final kick off was at 12:30.

Yes, I know, my first mistake of the day was planning my church attendance around a highly popular international sports event.

Live and learn, right?
Maybe. Depends on how my schedule matches up with the World Cup in 4 years. Haha

Anyways – sacrament was great. The final speaker ended 15 minutes early. It was as if he understood that there was something special happening at 12:30.

He closed his talk, I said Amen – and we were only at 12:25.
Perfect – I thought for a brief second that even Heavenly Father understood everyone was trying to make it back home for the kick-off.

Very unwise of me to make such assumptions.

The Bishop got up and proceeded to “fill” the time.

Let me just say that I strongly oppose when people feel the need to just fill empty time with just anything. I’ve heard several General Authorities say that there is nothing wrong with ending a meeting early.

Maybe the Bishop was prompted to share the very random stories he did.
I will not question that -but I got restless.

After he proceeded to fill a 12 minute void with stories.
He said Amen, and we were out of our chairs before the closing hymn even started.

My first mistake was changing my schedule to watch the game.
My second mistake was getting flustered at the Bishop.
My biggest mistake was leaving EARLY (even though I felt justified).

As a whole the game was uneventful.

Have you ever felt like you received immediate punishment for something?

This might be totally untrue but part of me felt like the game was lackluster because I couldn’t wait an extra 4 minutes to sing a song and listen to a prayer. Maybe I’m wrong, but I can’t help but feel like the weak game was my punishment.

I disregarded church for a game = weak game.

“…him have I punished according to the crime which he has committed…” (Mosiah 29:15)

? Have you ever left church for something…. not so important?

not in the mood.

26 06 2010

I don’t ask for much around this place (Blickenstaff’s) …

Sooooo, when I do, part of me feels like I should get it. (That sounds bratty, I know)

I’m here, writing this at the front cash register while the USA world cup game is on and my boss is on her break!

The store is EMPTY. (Maybe others are watching the game – or maybe my silent prayer that business crashes today because I don’t get to watch the game was heard and answered)


Ok – so it’s not life or death – I’m being dramatic.

I’m just bummed that I gotta work during this 2 hour window.

I’ve been looking forward to this game ever since we won the last game. I requested my lunch break during this time frame the moment I knew the USA was playing. Now it looks as though there will be no lunch for me today.


It sucks when you look forward to something and then it’s taken away.

“That they may be disappointed also, and their hopes may be cut off…” (D&C 121:14)

Looking back at what I’ve just written I realize how petty it looks – but I don’t even care! Haha

? When was the last time you looked forward to something that didn’t come to pass?

party in the USA.

23 06 2010

Today was do or die for USA soccer.

In order to move out of the group stage the USA had to win.

They’ve had some tough breaks in the group games so far and today was no exception.

Another goal was disallowed after an unjust offsides was called. The US team shot lights out and couldn’t get the ball in the back of the net until…

The 91st minute. Stoppage time. Desperate for a goal.

Our keeper, Tim Howard, launched a ball down the side to Landon Donovan who pushed it up to Jozy Altidore, who passed it in to Clint Dempsey whose shot was deflected.

Donovan crashed the box and drilled the deflected shot into the back of the net.


Donovan described the team’s efforts on the pitch as the embodiment of the American spirit – when things go wrong, we push onwards until we accomplish what we set out to do or die trying.

And there have been moments where death was on the horizon (figuratively speaking of course).

But sometimes literally…

It’s true.
I feel like Americans have a tenacity to begin campaigns in dire straights and then pull themselves out of the muck and overcome.

Some nations see us as arrogant – but we are not arrogant, simply confident. We believe that we can overcome anything. There is something special about knowing that your country was founded by men who earnestly sought to do good and overcame great odds to make it happen.

America is comprised of heroes. It always has been. Heroes in every facet of life.

Landon Donovan, today my friend, you are America’s hero.

Today you overcame.

“I will that ye should overcome the world…” (D&C 64:2)

? Who are your heroes?

too much respect.

17 06 2010

The World Cup has been pretty slow through the first round of games. There were a lot of draws – and the big names didn’t perform as well as I would have liked to see. Even the underdogs didn’t show much spark as a whole.

Most of the teams seem to use the first game in their group to ease into the tournament. They are feeling things out and not taking too many risks.

I understand the logic behind the cautious start – BUT I wouldn’t play it that way.

This is the biggest tournament in national soccer. It only happens once every 4 years. You have 1 chance every 4 years to prove yourself. This is not the time to sit back and play cautious.

Too many people games to not lose – as opposed to seeking the win.

As I was watching the Nigeria/Greece game this morning the announcer said something interesting. He was complimenting Nigeria on the aggressive nature of their play and then said, “it’s too bad they weren’t more aggressive last week against Argentina. It seems like they just showed too much respect to the Argentines.”

Too much respect?

I agree.

Argentina is a respected soccer nation with a lot of clout in the soccer culture – Nigeria approached the Argentines with that thought at the front of their minds.

Today, against Greece, they stood tall. They were confident. They appeared to believe THEY were the best team on the pitch.


Nigeria lost 1-0 to Argentina. (Argentina didn’t exactly play well – and the Nigerian keeper was great) I wonder if the result would have been different if Nigeria had just stood a little taller and believed they were the best team on the pitch.

Being humble is good. Recognizing the talents of others is wonderful. Congratulating others on their accomplishments is great.

BUT when you step out onto the pitch, whether in soccer or in life – you need to believe you are the best team out there.

If you are out there more concerned with not losing than you are with winning you will end up like Nigeria. The team you respected (too much) will walk away with the victory (and not necessarily because they are better).

Show respect, and stand tall believing in yourself.

You can be the BEST.

It reminds me of the Houston Rockets in the ’94 – ’95 seasons. They were not the the greatest team to take the court – but they believed in themselves.
Their coach, Rudy Tomjanovich, said, “Never underestimate the heart of a champion.”

’94 and ’95 were CHAMPIONSHIP seasons for the Rockets. (Although it helps that Jordan was retired both of those years – haha)

I think this whole post is probably just for me. I’ve been thinking all day about it. It hit me this morning during the game and I think I sometimes try to not lose instead of taking what I want… the WIN.

“If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth…” (Mark 9:23)

? Do you go for the win or try to avoid the loss?

Cars & Freedom.

12 06 2010

In 1776 America notched its first victory against the British during the Revolutionary War.

It was the first, but certainly not the last time we beat our “friends” across the pond.

200+ years later it’s time for us to add another tally to the victory total.

USA vs. England. World Cup 2010.

Aside from the Final, this is the most anticipated game of the tournament.

I served my mission in England and love the English team. They’ve got some great players – I LOVE watching Wayne Rooney!


I’m American. And I want America to pull the upset off!

A lot of countries look at America pride as American arrogance…
Hmmm… Maybe it’s a little bit of both.

Cars and freedom.

I don’t actually believe the cars part – but, man that commercial is funny!

“And this land shall be a land of liberty unto the Gentiles, and there shall be no kings upon the land…
And I will fortify this land against all other nations…” (2 Nephi 10:11-12)

A land of liberty. A land fortified against all other nations.

It’s too bad the scriptures don’t mention anything about our land being gifted in athletic competitions…

We will need a small miracle to win today…

? Who do you think is going to win?

world cup.

11 06 2010

It’s finally here!

The worlds greatest sporting event. The World Cup!

This is the most global sporting event on the market.

Yeah, we could argue the Olympics are up there as well. I love the Olympics as much as the next guy (mostly the summer games because of the basketball and the womens gymnastics) BUT – there is something special about the “beautiful game” as it is so aptly called.

The Olympics doesn’t get 260 million viewers. The Super Bowl didn’t get that either. Who did?
The 2006 World Cup – making it the worlds most watched event… EVER.

I love soccer (football for my international friends).

This will be a wonderful month. Matches to watch pretty much EVERY day! Due to the time difference it looks like we will be watching some early games – but it’s worth it.

Soccer is a sport that unites nations in a way that resembles a nation united by an outside militant threat. It is amazing. You can have a country filled with turmoil and strife, but if they qualify for the World Cup you will see them unite behind the team. Those players play for more than just a victory on the field. Some teams hope to bring change to their nation.

After winning a World Cup qualifier match for the Ivory Coast, Didier Drogba, got on his knees and begged the warring factions in his country to lay down their weapons and end the civil unrest.

Drogba asked for the qualifying match between the Ivory Coast and Madagascar to be held in the center of the conflict, amidst the killings and fighting.

But here’s what happened:

“‘It was amazing,’ declared Commandant Attoungbre of the government army. ‘It was the first time since the start of the war that the loyalist army had been in the rebel capital; the first time in nearly five years that my troops and rebel forces had been face-to-face in a non-hostile setting … all this, thanks to a mere football match.'”

It’s not a mere football match.
What a beautiful game.

It helps that I LOVE the theme song for this years World Cup.

Ok – the video is a little cheesy – but the song is great!

And in case you aren’t convinced about the greatness of this game or the event then watch these top ten goals from the 2006 World Cup!

Imagine if the Nephites and Lamanites had soccer. Do you think it would have united them?

I’d like to think so…

But typically it took a crazy amount of problems to soften them up…

“But behold, because of the exceedingly great length of the war between the Nephites and the Lamanites many had become hardened, because of the exceedingly great length of the war; and many were softened because of their afflictions, insomuch that they did humble themselves before God, even in the depth of humility.” (Alma 62:41)

? Who do you want to win the World Cup?

*I want America (they won’t) – England would be great (they won’t either) – so my next choice would be Spain!

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