The Best Car Commercial Ever?

“Here’s a couple of things America got right: cars and freedom.”

Just shy of a decade later, I still think about this commercial from time to time. 🇺🇸


Sports Illustrated Praise for Gandy-Golden

I’ve been enjoying the coverage of Antonio Gandy-Golden this off season. Naturally, I hope the Cowboys draft him, but that seems doubtful. Either way, it’ll be fun watching him play on Sunday.

Antonio Gandy-Golden, Liberty (6-4, 220): Gandy-Golden finished his senior year ranked No. 4 in the country in receiving yards (1,396) and No. 5 in receiving yards per game (107.4). As a senior, he had 79 receptions for 1,396 yards (17.7 average) and 10 touchdowns to earn a place in the Senior Bowl. He became the first player in program history to record 1,000 receiving yards in three consecutive seasons (1,396 yards as a senior, 1,037 as a junior and 1,066 as a sophomore). He is the school’s all-time leader in receiving yards (3,814), receptions (240) and receiving touchdowns (33).

Gandy-Golden didn’t begin playing football until his freshman year of high school. The big guy’s balance and flexibility comes from his gymnastics background. That’s the sport he competed in as a youth in Chicago as a way to keep him out of trouble. “My balance is definitely better because of the tumbling,” Gandy-Golden told the Daily Orange. “I’ve always been strong for my size but I have a better idea of how to jump and use my body.” He put himself on the map with 13 catches for 192 yards and two touchdowns vs. Baylor in 2017. “It just shows because he has unbelievable balance. He can do all types of frontflips and backflips and all that type of stuff,” Liberty receivers coach Kyle DeArmon told the News and Advance. “All of that stuff transitions over to the football field mainly because of the balance that he has. He’s able to stay on his feet, he’s able to control his body to go up and make those type of catches.”

H/t Sports Illustrated


Talent on Loan from God

Seeing Rush get the Medal of Freedom brought tears to my eyes. I grew up listening to Rush on long car rides with my grandpa to Little Rock or Gonzales or God knows where. His bumper music is seared into my brain and brings a smile to my face even today. Love him or hate him, few people have done more to promote freedom and America than Rush Limbaugh. Well deserved.


XKCD: “Reionization Plays a Lot of Selena Gomez.”


Media Miscellaneous Technology

Best of 2018

It’s that time of year. The time when everybody makes a whole big thing out of one number changing on the calendar. By my count, the number 8 has been replaced by the number 9 thirty-six times this year. But we’re all supposed to act like the thirty-seventh time is some big deal. Once you’ve seen the new millennium, its hard to get excited about 2019. 

Nevertheless, I am given to understand that year-end-best-of posts are like catnip to you people so I would be falling down on my job as a Semi-Professional Blogger™if didn’t crank one out for the driveling masses. Here goes…

*note: I will not be limiting myself to things released in 2018. For me, it is enough if I have consumed the thing in 2018.


This year, I set a goal to read 26 books. Then I hit that goal. So I increased it to 35. Then I hit it again. After repeating the aforementioned cycle a few more times, I landed at my current goal of 52 books (see all the books I have read this year). Here are some of the highlights: 


There have been a lot more disappointments in the film industry than hits this year, at least for me. A Star is Born was 2/3 of a good movie. Avengers: Infinity War was solid, but not exceptional. Black Panther was great, but everyone already knows that. So here are the best movies I saw this year that didn’t get enough buzz:

TV Shows

Something, something Golden-Age-of-TelevisonÂŽ:


There are a lot of apps out there. It’s kind of a big deal. I regularly make app recommendations to people, here are some of my favorite apps I started using in the last year: 


This is America, dammit. And in America we love stuff. New stuff, old stuff, shiny stuff… you get the idea. These are some of my favorite things I bought this year:

There you have it. Go buy some stuff. It will make you happy for at least a few minutes.


On Barbecue

Being from Texas, I have strong opinions regarding the smoking of meat. Barbecue is the sacred tradition of my people. From the cattle ranchers perfecting brisket to the Germanic, Polish, and Czech infusion of sausage, Texas is barbecue and vice versa. When you live your life in the holy land of smoke rings and pits, you grow accustomed to a certain level of quality; a quality not easily found in other parts of the country. A fact which I quickly discovered when I moved to Virginia in 2015.

The ‘best’ barbecue in Lynchburg—where I moved in 2015—was from Dickey’s. This was the consensus of everyone I spoke to in the area. Including my fellow texpatriots (people who has left their native country of Texas), much to our disappointment. It seems that the great state of Virginia has not been informed of the Gospel of Smoke. Thus, I have set about to rectify this cruel trick of fate.

1. There is only one true style of barbecue.

Pipe down Kansas City, Memphis, and Carolina. Texas barbecue is the one and only true style of barbecue. (Oh, and while we’re talking about states, Arkansas, ‘side’ means it goes beside the barbecue. Get that coleslaw off your sandwiches. You’re embarrassing yourself.) K.C., no one likes that spicy ketchup you call barbecue sauce. Memphis, see my side-note directed at Arkansas. Carolina, Vinegar? Why? The fact that theses pretenders to the crown of smoky glory are chiefly differentiated by the bases of their sauces, proves that they are, in fact, pale imitations of the one true barbecue. Which brings me to the second law of barbecue.

2. Sauce is a crutch.

Barbecue sauce is the autotune of the smoking process. Its purpose is to cover up shoddy craftsmanship and sub-par flavor with a sugary sweet syrup that takes your mind away from the bland nothingness in your mouth. Sauced barbecue is to real barbecue, as Miley Cyrus is to the Eagles: a pale imitation and a miserable successor. True barbecue should be imbued with enough flavor from the smoking process that to smother it in sauce would be, rightly, considered laughable.

3. Pork is not barbecue. Period.

Nor is chicken, lamb, turkey, or—god forbid—fish (looking at you K.C.). With the exception of fish, these are acceptable sides for real barbecue but contemptible substitutes. What, then, is real barbecue? Beef brisket. End of discussion. In its purest form, barbecue is sliced or chopped brisket; nothing else. Ideally, served with a half-loaf of thinly sliced white bread and coleslaw, potato salad, green beans, and onions as sides.

You should now be wondering where you have to go to get this mouthwatering barbecue I have described. The answer is simple: Texas. It’s not hard to find good barbecue in Texas but if you want the best, you will need to venture off the beaten path. Kruez Market in Lockhart, Texas is the best barbecue you will taste this side of heaven (it is universally accepted that the Marriage Supper of the Lamb will, in fact, be beef brisket). But, if you can’t make it to this beef oasis between Austin and San Antonio, here are some other options that will suffice:

  • Pecan Lodge (Dallas)
  • Franklin’s (Austin)
  • Black’s (Lockhart)
  • Cooper’s (Llano)
  • Smitty’s Market (Lockhart)
  • Gatlin’s (Houston)

Try any of these and your life will be forever changed.


Downtown Lynchburg, VA Photography

I decided to do a little exploring in Downtown Lynchburg, VA. It is a beautiful old town whose architecture just drips with history. The city was settled in the mid-1700s and experienced industrialization in the 1880s. The age of the city is apparent in its construction; you regularly find modern buildings right next to turn of the century factories and shops. Lynchburg is a beautiful mosaic of modernity and antiquity.


5 Things You Should Do When It Seems Like Your Life Is Falling Apart

Originally written for Inside Out Magazine and published in Feb. 2015.

At times in life it seems like nothing is going according to plan.

The path, ever so carefully laid, seems to be crumbling at every turn.

Your “Five Year Plan” is starting to look more like a pipe dream than anything else and you just don’t know what to do. On days like that it’s easy to sit around and wonder what you did wrong and why nothing seems to be going your way. That has been my life recently.

The last few months have a merry-go-round of disappointment, unmet expectations, and hopes dashed.

So what do you do when it seems like nothing is going your way?

I don’t know. I am trying to figure it out, but I just don’t know. So if you came here looking for a step-by-step guide to turn your life around I am sorry to disappoint. I am just like you, a normal guy trying to figure out this sometimes beautiful, often baffling, always complex thing called life. But I have found a few things that can help keep the melancholy at bay.

1. Set Goals And Reach Them

I am talking about the kind of goals that you can reach in a day or a week. Don’t get me wrong, long term goals are important but what you need right now is a shot in the arm of accomplishment not the seemingly far flung hope of a long term goal. So set a goal you can reach today. Maybe it’s to go for a run, or to write a blog post, or something else entirely, just accomplish something. Then set a goal for the week. Maybe it’s to finish something you’ve been putting off, or it could be just to read a book. It really doesn’t matter what your goals are, just so long as you are accomplishing them.

2. Revel In The Small Victories

When you accomplish something, even something small, take note. when something good happens, take note. And celebrate the little wins. I got a 28 on the ACT, one point better then my long-shot goal. That is not that big of a deal in the grand scheme of life but when it seems like nothing else is going your way even little things need to be celebrated. One of my new years resolutions is to get a jar and whenever something good happens to write it on a piece of paper and put it in the jar so that at times like this when I am feeling down I can open up the jar and see all the good things happening in my life.

3. Reach Out To Friends

This can be especially hard for guys, when we’re down our natural instinct is to isolate and muscle through our problems. The problem is that that isn’t healthy. One of the first things God said about human beings is that it is not good for us to be alone. Isolation is no way to live. We were meant to have fellowship with other people and sometimes you just need to talk about your problems with someone.

4. Unplug

Maybe it’s time to log off Facebook for a while. If you find yourself wallowing in self pity after you get read social media it’s probably time to give it a rest. When you compare your life to other people’s Facebook timeline it’s like comparing their highlight real to your behind the scenes. Sometimes you just need to take a step back from the virtual connections and connect to real people in real life.

5. Pray

Don’t think I am just tacking this on at the end to earn Jesus Points. I want it to by the thing you walk away from the post with, so I want it to be the last thing you read. God doesn’t want us to come to him just when things are good, and when things are going according to plan. Pour your heart out to God, tell him how you’re feeling, tell him what’s wrong, tell him your fears, after all he’s the only one who really knows whats going to happen tomorrow, or next year for that matter.


Why You Need To Start: One Key That Changes Everything

I can’t even begin to tell you how many posts I have written but never pressed the publish button. And I ask myself why. Why did I give up after the post was already written? After the hardest part was done, why is it that step I am most unwilling to take is to simply click the publish button?

think a lot of people have this same problem. Whether it’s with writing, business, relationships, or anything else, we have an inherent fear of clicking publish, a fear of taking the leap and committing. We believe what we have to say, we trust our business instinct, we know how we feel about that person, but we’re afraid to click publish and expose those beliefs, instincts, and feelings to other people. We fear the reaction of others more than we believe in ourselves.

In my own life, I have found this to be caused by three things.

  1. Fear of rejection.
  2. Fear of failure. 
  3. Feelings of inadequacy.

These three forces combine to create, what I call, The Triad of Inaction. The Triad of Inaction works to insulate us from our fears but ultimately succeeds in destroying any influence we may have.

“Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt.”

William Shakespeare

The antidote to the Triad can be summed up in just two simple words:

Just start.

I am not saying its easy, our fears will always seek to hold us down because once you start overcoming them you realize, it’s not that hard and when that happens your fear no longer controls you.

Starting can be terrifying, most of your life you’ve been training yourself to minimize your exposure to criticism and starting flies in the face of that. Starting is the opposite of what we naturally do. Starting takes courage, starting takes faith, and starting takes just a little bit of crazy.

So how do you start, starting? Start small. Start telling that special someone how you really feel. Sure its terrifying, because they could reject you, but whats the worst that could happen? They walk away, you learn, you move on. That’s not so bad.

The best thing about starting is that it get easier. the more you start the more you want to start. The more you want to start the more starting becomes a reflex instead of a choice. When starting is a reflex you don’t even have to think about it, you just start.

“Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure… than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”

Theodore Roosevelt