June 30, 2009


So, last week I got my old job back at Biltmore Country Club. Exciting stuff. Minus the heat, the first go-round was a blast - definitely my favorite job ever. Anyways, I signed up for round two and started yesterday. Like the people, love the golf, need the money. Perhaps the best part of the job, besides those things, are the random happenings that make the days interesting. In the summer mid-week we aren't super busy, so we need these things to keep us entertained. The second best part is that we are basically allowed to stand our ground if someone is being a douche bag for no apparent reason. Today was that day.

About 7am I was sitting out on the lot when a 7 Series all done up with body kit and dubs rolls in. This is nothing new, I deal with rich people all day. So, the guy pulls up, pops the trunk, and gets out. I take the clubs, and him and his buddy say something or other about thanks, yada, yada. It doesn't take a genius to realize the difference between someone actually saying thanks and someone just saying it out of obligation. The driver was a decent enough guy, but his buddy thought he was pretty hot shit and just kind of whatever. No big deal to me - it was early, and I wasn't in the mood. So, I took the clubs, closed the trunk, and that was that. Happened to notice the custom plate on the car just said "91" - obviously an athlete. Only thing was it was a wirey white dude no bigger than me driving. But wait, he had a Russian accent. Hockey player, gotta be. After some googling on the BB I figured out who it was, and yes, he is a rather talented hockey player. You know, if you're into that kind of thing. I later noticed he had a little replica of his own jersey hanging from his rear view mirror. So I guess he kind of is a douche. Whatever.

So the day goes along and I'm just doing my thing when they roll up alongside the green at #9, not too far from the front of the clubhouse and where I'm at. Apparently dbag friend is upset that he hasn't been helped by the beverage cart girls yet, but it's only 8:30 so what can you really expect? We can't even serve alcohol that early in the morning. But this guy, he wants his booze. So naturally, he yells at me about how he hasn't been served yet. You get used to unreasonable rich people, and more so their friends who think they're entitled to douchebaggery because they're with someone rich; so again, I was fine with it. I told him the girls would be around soon and if he wanted something that second the restaurant bar was open literally 50 yards away from where he was. Apparently he didn't like that answer and proceeded to mumble something or other and then come at me with his wallet out. Interesting. He pulled a $20 halfway out of it and I was kind of surprised. However, he then decided to smirk, sarcastically say "thanks for the help," and flip me four quarters. Well, two can play that game.

I told him to keep his four quarters and also threw in that a drink wasn't going to help that triple digit pace he was on for the round (1. We have "ranger mode" on our GPS, and I get to see what everyone on the course is shooting. It's awesome 2. He was at something like 53 through nine. AKA, awful). Needless to say, he didn't enjoy me knocking his garbage golf game and proceeded to throw some language at me and challenge me to a hole for that 20 spot he slid back in his wallet. I just laughed and asked him if he was serious. Knowing what he was shooting, there was no question in my mind. But, he insisted. What am I supposed to do? Say no? Pleeeeease.

So, we drove back to the tee, and long story short I kicked his ass. Good times, and a free $20 (although it went to the tip poke and not straight to my wallet. I play by the rules). Needless to say he was still livid when he came back around after the back nine, and as a final attempt at salvaging his manliness left his cart in the parking lot. You know, like a classy individual would do.

I love my job.

June 24, 2009


When I get bored on a summer afternoon I tend to spend time looking around for new music, and today was no different (although I did get a phone call from the Biltmore for a "meeting" tomorrow... fingers crossed). My favorite find of the day, and summer, was Discovery - a duo comprised of Wes Miles (Ra Ra Riot) and Rostam Batmanglij (Vampire Weekend). They sent along a nifty little player app so you can listen here until the LP release on July 7th. I don't know exactly how you go about putting together electropop, indie, and hip hop beats, and that's why their names are on the record and not mine. I really don't even know what to call it, especially coming from these two guys. It's so unique, and so different from anything either of them has ever done. Regardless, these guys kill it, and just in time for the summer heat. Click on a song to start the party. Once you start you're not gonna stop. And I can tell you the album's Jackson 5 cover of I Want You Back is sick. I give you my favorite new band of the summer - Discovery.

Orange Shirt - straight jam.

June 21, 2009


Happy Father's Day to everyone, hope you had a good one. I know I enjoyed kicking my dad and sister's asses in the family's annual Father's Day golf outing (Jeffe had to play army - LAME). Playing golf on Father's Day is probably my favorite thing about the holiday, but number two is watching the final round of the US Open. Bethpage Black has been rain-soaked the last few days, so the majority of the final round will be played tomorrow. The best part you ask? Phil Mickelson is within striking distance. A win would be huge for him as his wife was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. Throw a prayer up for Amy, Phil, and the family.

Also ran into a cool story about the folks at Pixar and a little girl's wish on a friend's blog. I don't want to straight steal it, so here's a link over there instead. The people at Pixar are great, and so is Up. Go see it if you haven't already.

Happy Father's Day. Let's go, Lefty.


I'd like to think this blog thing I have going is a happy place to share random thoughts and things I find interesting or entertaining - whether or not that is true to the outside observer, I don't know. However, this post isn't so light-hearted. There's your warning. It is my space to share what I want, after all.

This day happens to mark the anniversary of one of the most confusing and impactful (yes, I made that word up) experiences of my life - the day we lost 'Mouth' to a drunken idiot who decided to get behind the wheel. The details of the accident still make me sick and are certainly not anything I want to rehash in great detail, but can be found here for the passersby who don't know what happened that Father's Day night.

While I could go on for days about the senselessness of what happened, that is really not why I mention it here. The kid lived a life to be remembered and celebrated; and that's the point. And if you happen to be a person of faith, whatever it might be, throw up a prayer for the Conards today.

One life, one love. Take it easy, buddy.

June 18, 2009


Random video I made for my photos final made from still frame... I think it was something like 1600 pictures, but who knows.

But let it go, live your life, and leave it...

June 17, 2009


This is one of my favorite songs of pretty much all time, which seems a little ridiculous considering it's age. But some wines are classics right from the get-go, so why not music, too? Basically my favorite place to be in life is the water. I don't know what it is (maybe growing up in the desert?), but there's just something amazing about it to me. Being in the water, and particularly under water... I just don't know. It's a place that makes me realize how small I am in the grand scheme of things, or whatever it is people say. And it's the place I take whatever's messing with me. Whether it's the ocean, the pool, sitting in the shower (yes, I like to literally sit in the shower)... It's like being on Rock, only way more relaxing. And way more wet. Anyway, this song pretty much nails it.

Take from it what you will.

You gotta swim, swim for your life
Swim for the music that saves you when you're not so sure you'll survive
You gotta swim, swim when it hurts
The whole world is watching, you haven't come this far to fall off the earth
The currents will pull you away from your love
Just keep your head above

I found a tidal wave begging to tear down the dawn
Memories like bullets, they fired at me from a gun
Cracking the armor, yeah
I swim for brighter days despite the absence of sun
Choking on salt water, I'm not giving in
I swim

You gotta swim through nights that won't end
Swim for your families, your lovers, your sisters, and brothers, and friends
Yeah, you gotta swim, through wars without cause
Swim for the lost politicians who don't see their greed as a flaw
The currents will pull us away from our love
Just keep your head above

You gotta swim, swim in the dark
There's no shame in drifting, feel the tide shifting, and wait for the spark
Yeah, you gotta swim, don't let yourself sink
Just find the horizon, I promise you it's not as far as you think
The currents will drag us away from our love
Just keep your head above


June 12, 2009


I've been home about a week now, and when I say I have loved every second I really mean it. This is my place, my town, my valley, my home. I got my first blog comment tonight, and while it was exciting it was kind of hard at the same time. While you can all read it, I just wanted to mention it briefly.

The comment was anonymous, but I'm going to go ahead and assume that it came from a friend in CA (I'm smart like that). For those of you random passersby that don't know, I spent the last four years of my life at Pepperdine in CA, and spent some time in Florence, Italy, as well. While they were probably the four most challenging years of my life for a variety of reasons, I am so thankful I got to live out the experiences I did, meet the people I met, and get the education that I got. Fun fact of the day - that education is currently worth more than my family's house; although my lack of a job might tell you otherwise (oh heeeey, economy).

Over my last couple months in CA, I had a ridiculous amount of conversations about where life was headed, and a lot of the people I talked to had one thing to say... "I don't know what's going to happen, but I don't want to go home." I completely understand that perspective, and definitely believe it holds merit. College was a blast. But when it came down to it for me, all I wanted was home. That's no knock on CA (well, maybe a little), and certainly not on all my friends there, but it's what I needed.

When you're a kid you always hear about how home is where the heart is. Those that know me well know that I hate cliché, but it is what it is (I say that a lot, cliché or not, but mostly because it's true). While I was in CA that's where my heart was, no doubt. I had a blast and wouldn't change a whole lot of anything that happened there. But while I was there, my pulse came from what I have here. And it goes beyond just a person or people - it's a community. It's irreplaceable, just like every individual community is. Community is amazing; and I fully believe it's what keeps us going, day to day, week to week, trial to trial. When things hit the fan for me last summer, my brother and one of my best friends on my doorstep in CA a couple days later without me even asking. In no way is that me saying that the community I have in CA is inadequate in some way; it's just how amazing the community I have here is. It's why I'm home. It's what got me to CA in the first place. Without this community, I would have settled here and never taken the risk of challenging myself elsewhere to begin with. I love California, this is just where I need to be right now.

I guess this kind of just bumbled along and ended up much longer than intended, and I would like to clarify that in no way am I suddenly a proponent of complacency and settling for something well known and comfortable rather than taking risks. Don't ever stop challenging yourself and the status quo. But when you get somewhere that was worth going, stop and take a second to realize how the hell you got to where you did, and recognize how valuable whatever it was that got you there still is.

June 10, 2009


One of the best quotes out there? I say yes.

"The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company... a church... a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past... we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude... I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you... we are in charge of our attitudes."
- Chuck Swindoll


Actually, to be honest, it's more of a ride to the Biltmore. But they're only about 100 yards apart and I like alliteration; especially when the words involved don't start with the same letter (as in, freakin' pheasant). I also like parentheses, ellipses, commas, and starting sentences with 'and.' Deal. Anyways...

Now that I'm back home in the Valley, I have been riding Rock (my bike, short for his real name 'Rockhopper') from my house to the Wrigley Mansion/Biltmore every night that I'm not out with the friends doing something we probably shouldn't be doing. It's something I used to do before I went off to school and one of my favorite ways to both torture my post-grad body back into shape and decompress. It's Matt time - a way for me to just get away from everything and think, and now that I'm back it's no different. I'm loving it. I take off around 10 every night and get back whenever it is that I decide I'm done riding.

Tonight post-dinner, pre-ride, I spent some time reading a friend's blog and when I got out on Rock I found myself running through a bunch of different things that she had to say. I was kind of surprised by it, and quite impressed, actually. So impressed, in fact, that I decided I might need a blog of my own. Not because I think I am full of some special wisdom, but because of the fact that her blog made me think. It dominated Matt and Rock time. Hopefully, if anyone ends up reading this, something I have here might provoke some thought as well. I'm fully convinced thinking is good. Great, in fact. And at worst, random people like yourself get to creep on my life. Lucky you.

With that said, I have no idea what this might become or how often I will even use it. But as with all things in life, it is what it is, and this happens to be my feeble attempt at a blog. This is me, these are my thoughts, and you are welcome to join along.

I love home. There's nothing better. And so ends the first attempt. Take it easy.