Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Manly Manly Jed

Untitled from Jed Wells on Vimeo.

I'm proud of you, Glimglom. We're all proud of you.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Lars-Erik Larsson

I just put this on Facebook, but in the spirit of Brandie's last post I posted it here so you guys know just how awesome it is. This is The Winter's Tale by Lars-Erik Larsson. I heard it on our classical station out in NC a few years ago and it's stuck with me ever since as a real favorite. It's short but truly sublime--or whatever great adjective you want to use. You can thank me later.

Monday, October 31, 2011

My Brightest Diamond

This song kills me.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Thursday, August 18, 2011

For the Love of Manufacturing

Next time you hear someone complain about the decline of the manufacturing sector in the US send them here. Total manufacturing output in the US has not gone down. We make more stuff than we ever have. We just make more for less. That's usually considered progress but for some reason manufacturing is a hallowed profession that is considered different from others. That's not just on the Left either, as the linked article shows.

Here's one of the best graphs (among many) from the linked blog:

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Credit Ratings of Each State

Gil sent me this:

It reminds of me of the AAA ratings that were on bundled mortgages even though when you looked inside at the individual mortgages there was a lot of junk. To me this is more evidence for why most spending (especially social programs like medicare, medicaid and social security) should be done at the state and not the federal level. States can't print money and hide bad debt as well as the federal government. If they make too many poor fiscal choices their citizens will just leave and the state will have to restructure through bankruptcy. At the federal level, inflation can just make our debts all "disappear" over time.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Aaron, Please Help!

Sorry to keep posting economics garbage. But that's the stuff I'm reading lately and I can't help myself. Just tune me out if I'm getting pedantic. Anyway, this one is for Aaron. Aaron, is there any reason we should keep (or start) taking guys like Krugman remotely seriously? Here we have Krugman with the broken windows fallacy writ large. His arguments just seem so intuitively wrong on every level that I've been suppressing guffaws in my office for the last ten minutes after watching this clip.

I know Krugman comes off as an ideologue, but lots of economists still think this way. Help!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Stimulating Government Employees

Umm, is this blog still on? Of late I've been reading Henry Hazlitt's Economics in One Lesson online. It's full of money quotes with which I will regale you repeatedly.

Even though the stimulus bill of 2009 was sold as a "shovel-ready jobs" bill, a lot (most?) of the money has gone to shore up existing federal agencies and programs or was sent to states to support state budgets. Here's Hazlitt on why using money to retain government employees (whether you think that's a good idea or not) is unlikely to "stimulate" the economy:
The country is not merely as well off without the superfluous officeholders as it would have been had it retained them. It is much better off. For the officeholders must now seek private jobs or set up private business. And the added purchasing power of the taxpayers, as we noted in the case of the soldiers, will encourage this. But the officeholders can take private jobs only by supplying equivalent services to those who provide the jobs—or, rather, to the customers of the employers who provide the jobs. Instead of being parasites, they become productive men and women.

Monday, June 13, 2011


Here's a two-part action-packed miniseries made by my students.
Commie Terrorists - check.
Elite Freedom-loving Commando Unit - check.
Prelude to Buttkicking Montage - check.
Complete Disregard for Continuity - Let's rock.

And find more bizarre stuff here:


Monday, June 6, 2011


Jed and I were waiting in line to get free hot-dogs at RC Willies and our conversation lead us to the topic of techno music. I brought up the point that techno music can transcend all ages. Jed laughed at the thought and said he would give me a six pack of Welch's Grape soda if I could get his children into techno. Watch the videos all the way through. They are beautiful.

Here is the Pied-Piper of techno.

This is a newer Disney film, just in case your boys didn't like the last one.

This song almost brought me to tears.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Go Follow Jed's Russian Mormons Blog

Go sign up as a follower on Jed's Russian Mormons blog. It looks really good. Ummm, Jed's pretty cool.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


I recently went through some bins that contained stuff from high school. I found these gems.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Uhhh . . . try Yale next time dude

Maybe this LSU grad student thought he was at an Ivy League school when he planned to hold a flag burning protest. I'm glad the police protected him (free speech and all that), but I have to admit I enjoyed seeing him get mobbed off of campus. My guess is this is exactly what would have happened at just about any big, state school in the South or Midwest.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

So precious

Jed's pretty good, but these guys...

Guys, I think we squandered our one opportunity for some really great wedding photos. Jed, why couldn't you think of having my blushing bride superimposed over my bare-chested heart? You have the know-how.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Green Men

A very entertaining piece on E:60. These guys are living the dream.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

You Need to Read This Article on How Sugar Metabolism Affects Health

This is a fascinating article by Gary Taubes on the effects of sugar (particularly fructose) on diabetes, obesity and cancer. One of my Facebook friends linked to it and it is a definite must read. Here are my Cliff's Notes.

Apparently we metabolize glucose and sucrose differently. Table sugar (sucrose) and high fructose corn syrup both have a similar mix of glucose and fructose (about 50-50). While glucose can be metabolized by all cells in your body, fructose is metabolized by your liver. High fructose diets in mice and rats lead to high storage of fat because the liver converts the fructose into fat for storage. This can lead to obesity and having a "fatty liver." Actually, you may not be overweight and still have a fatty liver. This is my personal fear. I'm still pretty trim--but I love high sugar foods. I like to pig out on treats, cookies, syrupy pancakes, etc. Fortunately, I don't drink a lot of pop.

What is new about Taubes' article is the emphasis on sugar in the diet over fat. Apparently, the hypothesis of fructose as a driver for obesity, diabetes and heart disease was looked down upon in the research community until recently. However, data that supported the influence of high fat on health don't rule out high sugar because usually a high fat diet goes hand in hand with a high sugar diet.

Back to the liver. Fatty liver is highly correlated with insulin-resistance which can lead to diabetes. Insulin-resistance means, simply, that your body's cells ignore insulin. Insulin is a hormone produced in the pancreas which tells your cells to absorb glucose and, thus, lowers your blood sugar levels. You can have insulin resistance but not be diabetic, but ultimately insulin resistance is leading you down that path.

What I was unaware of was the link  between insulin resistance and cancer. I've often assumed that cancer rates have increased in the developed Western world almost exclusively due to increased lifespan, although I should have known better since I was aware that diet is a risk factor for cancer. Taubes cites data on the incidence of cancer in high-fat, high-sugar vs. low-fat, low sugar cultures that sounds convincing. I've long been aware that mutations lead to out-of-control proliferation of cells in the body. What is new to me is the influence of insulin-resistance on cell division. If you develop insulin-resistance your body increases its production of insulin and other insulin-like growth factors to compensate. This heightened concentration of insulin and insulin-related hormones can speed up the growth of pre-cancerous and cancerous cells.

So there you have it. Definitely read the article and then have your wife or husband read the article--and then say goodbye to eating fifteen cookies or a nice stack of 10 pancakes in one sitting.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

The True Value of Collegiate Sports

Growing up, my dad would often complain about the undue emphasis on sports at BYU. He still liked sports, but felt like it was too high on the priority list for the university. Having viewed this, I now understand his position. If BYU students were even just a little more like these UCONN students, sports would rightfully ascend the priority list and be firmly ensconced at the top. However, until BYU students truly step up, sports will remain an oleaginous leech; sucking attention away from more worthwhile priorities. #4 is my personal favorite. (Hat tip-Cougarboard.)

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Time to step up our game

When first I saw this (around 2 this morning) I thought, meh, we're funnier than these guys. The second time through I thought, maybe we're as funny as they. But today, with a clear head and brighter eyes, I can say with that confidence one only learns at Provo High School, no way. These guys are way funnier than we are.

Mikey, it's time to start pulling your weight again. And it wouldn't hurt to get Duerden and Holmes in on the writing.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

It's that time of year.

Tourney Time. Same deal as last year. Whoever wins the group gets lunch on me, unless I win, and then you all buy me a lunch, or perhaps Chris Bentley will.

Go to ESPN tourney challenge, fill out a bracket, join the group 'The Provonian' with the password: bulldogs.

You'll be set. And be prepared to lose.


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Those Dastardly Republicans and Their Cruel Spending Cuts!

Via Cato Institue.

Deer Roping

I found this story on Cougarboard about a rancher who thought it would be a good idea to lasso a deer. I'm not sure if it is true, but I do know it is funny.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Support local artists!

These are some friends of mine with a chance at a big break. They're part of a contest with Rolling Stone to be on the cover of the magazine and go places and ruin their lives through riotous living and unbridled debauchery. But for now they're a scruffy bunch of RM's living in Provo trying to decide if they'll be rock stars or music teachers.

Do your part and give them a shot at greatness. (And if they go places, I get to keep making music videos for them.)

ps. Thanks to D'H's in-laws for the yeti suit in the video.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Friday, February 11, 2011

This could've been Holmes

We wanted to do a piece on someone who farms in some capacity, perhaps because it's a part of all of our suburban daydreams to work with our hands, grow our own food, and flip the bird to the business, workaday, lifestyle.

Of course in those fantasies we never think about how much work keeping a farm would be. I'm sure Holmes could more than fill us in on the back breaking labor that goes into it (I seem to remember something about a chainsaw in one of his posts).

But with Holmes not here we were left with a Cat named Charlie Sigler who is a computer engineer who also runs a small family farm in Benjamin UT. Cool guy. It was really nice of him to let us hang out at his farm for a morning.

Jed shot this one as well. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Jimmered - Continued

Looks like ESPN also found out about the post Holmsie shared... http://espn.go.com/blog/collegebasketballnation/post/_/id/22753/jimmer-mania-gives-us-epic-facebook-thread

Uh oh . . . this person just got JIMMER'D!

This is rich. A young lady writes a letter complaining about Jimmer idol worship to the Daily Universe and then her Facebook page gets totally JIMMER'D!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Mr. Mike

Michael, or Mikey to his high school pals, is one great teacher. The day our crew came into the school we all were impressed, although not surprised, at how engaging, inventive, and fun he was as a teacher. Jed and I agreed that we wished he was teaching our kids.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Love J Dawgs?

More of the docs I worked on are available on BYUtv.org. I'll post a few, but if you want to see them for yourself I worked on the HumanKind and Ripple Effect pieces that can be found here.

Below is our spot on Jason Edwards and J Dawgs. Jed, again, does the camera work.

It was a nice surprise to realize that I was in a singles ward with Jayson, and he is as nice as he seems on this piece. Great guy. Next time you're in Provo swing by the shop.

UPDATE: Mikey's is now online. I'll post it tomorrow.

Friday, January 28, 2011

See the good, people!

Over the last few months I had the opportunity to work for BYUtv as a Story Producer for a series of short docs on people and organizations that are interesting or are making some kind of difference in the world.

Some of the docs are now available to watch on the BYUtv website. I'll post a few here over the next few days and weeks so you can all take a gander. Feel free to send these to facebook and non-facebook friends.

My favorite aspect of the project was working with Jed. He shot quite a few of these spots (including the one below) and has developed into quite a creative force to be reckoned with, not that that's a surprise to anyone.

This first one is about Ali Johnson founder of the organization "Start Something Beautiful" Enjoy!

This Was Touching

A man describes his autistic son's first spelling bee.

NCAA Tournament

Wouldn't it be cool to get some guys together to see the Cougars in the Big Dance? I'm just saying.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

No more words

There was a line at the end of Dancing at Lughnasa that mused about dance eliminating the need for language. The following clip does something similar, only it obliterates language. Annihilates it. Pulverizes and scatters it into the wind.

I defy you to find a superlative to match what you will see next.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Friday, January 21, 2011

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Guinea Fowl

I was looking through some of my Holmestead pictures and found this shot of one of our guinea hens and some of her brood from last June 24. These babies are four days old. (Baby guinea fowl are called keets, not chicks.) Guinea fowl are loud birds (which is a positive in my book) whose primary function is eating ticks and sticker seeds. Supposedly they also kill small snakes and rodents although I've never seen them do it. At any rate, they definitely reduced our tick population last spring and summer. They will lay small eggs for you in the spring until they get broody and wander off into the grass to make a nest.
From Holmestead Pictures (public)
She hatched 16 out of 17 eggs on June 20. She made her nest in some tall grass not too far from the house. It rained really hard in early June when she was sitting on the nest but she stuck it out like a trooper. Once I finally located her nest I would leave her a little corn every day. It's amazing that a bird can nest out in the grass for three weeks and no critters found her. Of her 16 babies 9 are alive today. We started with six guineas originally, made it up to around 34 once two pairs hatched out eggs and are now at 10 after attrition, mostly to foxes and one to an owl.

One other interesting trait is that guineas form monogamous pairs so you can have multiple males. Also, they are better foragers than chickens so they don't require a lot of feed.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

The Dolmar PS510 Has Arrived

I ended up getting the Dolmar PS510 instead of the PS5105. It was $100 cheaper because it doesn't have quite as much horsepower and is 0.9 lbs heavier. I traded in the old saw for $140, got a couple of extra chains and a case for the Dolmar. The difference is amazing. The saw just rips through things and my back can tell I'm lugging 4-5 fewer pounds around. Here are some action photos after felling a 50 ft. Siberian Elm on Thursday.
From Holmestead Pictures (public)
Ah yeah!
From Holmestead Pictures (public)
I felled the tree into my neighbors' yard. You can see their tomato cages and bean trellises on one side and their compost container on the other. Fortunately, I dropped the tree right between them or my neighbor would be a lot angrier than he already is. (I'll write about that story later.)
From Holmestead Pictures (public)
Here is the view from the top of the tree. You can see how close I came to digging myself into a much bigger hole with the neighbors. I had started cutting the tree before I recognized that it was tall enough to hit their stuff. At that point it was too hard to change the direction the tree would fall so I had to hope for the best. Anyway, I was proud of my aim.
From Holmestead Pictures (public)
And there is a pickup load of firewood.