Friday, December 29, 2006

My News

I am sorry everyone... I haven't been a great blogger for the past couple of months. Who am I kidding- I have never been even an average blogger.

My exciting and scary news is that I am finally out of the Air Force. I separated from active duty on Friday- the 22nd of December. I am officially on terminal leave until Jan 19, 2007, and then begin my time in the Air National Guard. Terminal leave means I get paid until that dreadful day in January. Leaving the Air Force is the exciting news. Leaving the Air Force is also the scary news, especially when adding the pressure of having to find a new job. I have had a few leads, but either their hours weren't for me or the money wasn't where I needed it to be. So, Jess and I are still going through the process of finding a job that can pay our bizills (bills).

I am very excited about finally being able to live at home. It is awesome seeing Jess everyday. It is like we just got married all over again. The pets aren't used to me yet... they probably thought that I was some kind of boyfriend that only comes over to visit on the weekends. They will figure out that I am there for good in a couple of weeks.

Anyway, that is my exciting and scary news. Remember, hook a brotha' up if you have any leads on a job. I do, however, want to stay in Athens. I want to work close to where I live for once in my life. Commuting stinks and I feel bad for those that have to do it in their current jobs. If you don't have any leads, just keep Jess and I in your prayers for a job to come along- and soon! Talk to you later.



We would really like to thank those of you who kept us in your thoughts and prayers during this experience. In addition, we would like to offer a special thank you to those who took the time to keep us company as well, remembering that though Brent returned home (to the U.S.), he wasn't really home, and the situation still called for super-friends to battle the loneliness and separation blues. So, a special thanks to MKVG and Thad (and family) for cooking for Brent and taking him bowling down in WR, and to Jason, Kobi, Mom, and Jonathan for visiting Jess at her home and/or always inviting her to eat/drink coffee in ATH. You can't know how much your efforts meant to us. Another special thanks to our neighbor Sally, our wonderful dog-sitter - without her, Jess would never have survived the semester. Lastly, thanks to our folks (Brent's folks) for letting us use (for free!) their wonderful camper as a temporary residence.

Love - Jess and Brent

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

December already?

The verdict is in…I am officially too isolated and lonely. I was at the coffeehouse (again), and I started up a conversation with some random person. Several seconds into the conversation, I realize that I am one of those people! Oh nooooooooooooooooo!

Anyway, not much going on here. Just winding down the semester with finals, giving them and taking them.

Summary of events since…goodness, was October the last blog? Lots of events to summarize. Hmmm…

Suffered through an election in which negative publicity was the standard. It was amazing that we were asked to vote for people who had to say absolutely nothing about what they had done, what they were doing, or what they were going to do in the future for their constituents. The only requirement was to talk trash about their opponent. So, now we get to vote for people based upon…who is the most persuasive trash-talker, I guess.

Trip to the ASHA convention in Miami to present a poster session with colleagues and mentors. Had a GREAT time, though Miami must be one of the most unattractive cities I’ve ever visited.

Robin, Dr. Marshall, Dr. Andreatta, Dr. Bothe, me, Jason

My wonderful mentor, Dr. A (aka "Coach" or "Rico")

Jason and I by our poster

My brother and sister-in-law were baptized – wow, what a wonderful day that was!

Holidays…Thanksgiving w/ both sides of my family and w/ Brent’s family (including visitors from Chicago), housewarming party for my extended family, GA-GT game (woo-hoo!) with friends and fam, and…that is about it I believe.

Hangin' w/ Brent's extended fam, low country boil style after a big GA game

Jonathan and Ansley - she LOVES him!

Baby shower for a friend who is having her first.

Brent and I are expecting two new nephews (or nieces) :)

Brent has some exciting (and scary) news that I will let him share with you later. Meanwhile, we are freezing our behinds off - we both have gas heat at our separate residences, and cannot afford to keep it very warm. We were talking on the phone the other night, both of our teeth chattering, and we were INSIDE! Crazy...come on warm weather.

That’s all for now folks. I will post pictures from all of these events after finals.

Love ya - Jess

Tuesday, October 31, 2006


I'm sitting here at the coffee house, trying to get some work done, and what do I hear over the speakers??? SCARY MUSIC!!! They are playing scary Halloween music, and the batteries to my MP3 are dead, so I can't tune it out!!! Don't they know I'm going to have nightmares??? "I'm freakin' out man!" (Name that (horrible) movie.)

Love ya - Jess

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Checkin' in

Hey everyone, I just wanted to check in and let you know how things are going in Warner Robins. I am still hating it here, but it isn't bad overall. In fact, I submitted my package for separation last Friday (13th) and I should hear something back by the first week of November. So, I have about 3 weeks left until I possibly will receive good news! Jess and I really need to hear some good news. I will keep you posted.

Speaking of Jessica, I went home this weekend and we had a great time hanging out as usual (except at the GA/Vandy game). Let's not go there! Anyway, Jess is always interested in what I do during the week (at work) while I am in Warner Robins. For this reason, I decided to start a conversation that related to the speech and language field. She is very passionate about her career, so we got into this deep discussion about a hot topic in her field. I don't have much of an input on this topic, so I occassionaly nod or say uh-huh until she finishes making her point. In the end, she asks me a question about what I thought. In that moment, my eyes adjusted as I came out of a deep trance. I felt like Frank the Tank when he blacked out during his debate bit in Old School. I felt bad, but when I looked at my watch and realized that her conversation/my blacking out took 30 minutes- I was upset. We had just wasted 30 minutes of our weekend together. I told her to never talk about something that I can't even pronounce again because our weekends are too short and too valuable for events like that to happen. My playful scolding became a situation where Jessica couldn't stop laughing and I continued my bit until I had her laughing so hard that she started to cry. It was awesome! I know I kind of make fun of her laugh at times, but I love to hear it. It makes me happy. Anyway, Jess has forgiven me for my lack of listening skills.

Sorry this post turned into a story. My weekends are the only thing that keep me going, so I think about them a lot. I have been struggling with being apart from Jess and awaiting a decision on whether or not I can finally get out. It stinks!

I hope everyone is well. I will try to post again in a week or so.


Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Another video for you

I love this clip about sport-specific training. If you have ever competed in a triathlon, or any sport that has a mass start, you can probably relate. You are fighting for position, literally.


Just click the link.


Deep Thoughts on Living Apart From My Spouse (and Best Friend) Five Out of Seven Days of the Week:




Tuesday, September 26, 2006

For the Grey's Anatomy junkies

Here are some excerpts that I love from my TWoP site. The author was discussing the season finale. The review of the latest episode has not been updated yet, but it should be before Thursday. I can't wait for the review, because I'm sure they feel, as I do, that there should have been SOME explanation of how the folks got "the plague"...I mean really...and why did the show go all "LOST" with the flashbacks???

If you would like to visit TWoP, just go over to the right side of my blog and click on the TWoP link. Enjoy!


"Callie's all ready for the prom, but she's mad as hell at George. He follows her through the hospital and asks where she's going. Callie: "I'm wearing a dress, I have on heels, I shaved my legs, I'm going to the prom." What I will never understand is why the stylists on this show feel the need to dress Callie in some of the most unflattering outfits I've ever seen put on a body, when she is clearly this gorgeous specimen of woman and deserving of so much more. Keckler has a theory that they're doing this because Callie's going to turn out to be a nutbag, but I think it's just as simple as the fact that they don't know how to dress a person with thighs bigger around than a number two pencil."

"McDreamy says he would give anything not to be looking at her. So, you know...then they kiss. And I want to hate them. I do! Alas, I cannot. Because Patrick Dempsey is really, really pretty."

Wednesday, September 20, 2006


Hey everyone, I am checking in again with some pretty good news. No, the available in the title isn't what you think... I am happily married- sorry ladies. I got some good news about getting out of the Air Force and finishing up in the Guard. This is a lot better because I will be able to live at home with Jess and I will only have to do the AF thing on weekends (1 weekend a month). It still isn't 100% for sure, but it is looking pretty good. So, back to the available. I am available for a job in the near future, so be on the lookout for me in the IT/Telecommuncations world. I have tried the online job websites, but they're not bringing the results that I desperately need. However, they can bring me better results for a mere $150 bucks- what a scam! Did you not hear me? I need a job... hence-to-forth, I don't have the $150 smackers. Anyway, this is my update for now. I will bring more news as I get it. Until then, pray for Jess and I as we go further in this process. It is scary! Talk to you soon.


Sunday, September 10, 2006

Special visit with my aunt

My Aunt Esther came to town for a League of Women Voters conference, and stopped for a quick beverage and a chat with Brent and I in downtown Athens. It was great to see her and catch up on the family.

Hilton Head recap

Several years ago, we visited Hilton Head Island with some friends and had a great time. This Labor Day, we decided to take a trip and get away, and Hilton Head seemed like a great idea. It is pet friendly (dogs allowed on beach during certain hours) and there are also bike trails all over the island. So, despite the warnings and the Hurricane Ernesto "remnants", we decided to pack up the dog, our gear, and our bikes, and go anyway.

And we were so glad that we did. We did pass through one pretty horrible storm on the way there, and just knew our excursion was doomed. But we broke through, and then it was sunshine, sunshine, and more sunshine.

We took Mr. Cash to the beach several times. This was quite a learning experience. Word to the wise, if you have never taken your pup to the beach: BEWARE. Cash loved the beach, he loved the water. And when he got hot, he drank the water. And when he had to pee or poo, he tried to do that in the water as well. I noticed at one point that he was assuming the position for a #2, and tried to quickly get him out of the water up on to the beach so I could clean up after him. I was successful - we made it onto the sand - but while he was getting out of the water, he got smacked in the behind with a big huge wave. We wouldn't know the ramifications of this until later.

We get back to the room with our tired pup, and he was looking a little worse for the wear. His eyes were red from the saltwater, and he was acting like he didn't feel too well. He drank lots of freshwater, and then threw it up. He told us that he had to go outside, and when he did, geysers of water were spewing from both holes. Poor puppy. We felt so badly for him.

But he was recovered by the morning, and when we took him to the beach the next day, he was even more excited than before! We were much more careful though to limit his amount of time in the saltwater - we spent a lot of time throwing the frisbee on the sand. He had quite a crowd watching him - he has some impressive acrobatic skills.

As for Brent and myself, we rode bikes, did some window shopping, had a few good eats, and hung out at the beach just a little bit. We had a great time, even if it was just for a day and a half. We will definitely go back - beach-friendly and biker-friendly?????????? You can't beat that with a stick!

\/ Here is a pic of Mr. Cash on the ride home - he was VERY tired. He is sleeping on my Burberry that Kobi scored for me in NY.

MasterCard commercial

Pet fee at the Quality Inn.................$35 a night

Portable water bowl for the dog......$5

Parking for public beach.................$0.50 an hour

Watching Cash play on the beach, fulfilling my dream for my dear old Onyx

Catching up: III

Those of you who have a cat (or cats) can completely relate to this picture. Napopo loves bags - plastic bags, paper bags, cloth bags, backpacks, suitcases, you name it. He loves to crawl in, hide, and sleep. My bro was spending the night one evening, and after a long day of yard work, wanted to make a pillow for me as a gift. The cat took advantage of this opportunity to take a nap in the bag of stuffing. It was so funny looking. I was just careful to make sure every now and again that he was still breathing.

Catching up: II

My bro's first halftime - He is a "fresh-meat" drumline member. He did a great job in the pit and marching on the field as well.

It was an odd experience, watching the H.S. football team, watching him during halftime. I feel so OLD!!!!!!!

Catching up: I

One of Brent's welcome home gatherings with family at Athens Hilltop Grille. My Aunt Irene made the special trip - she is in her mid-90's now, can you believe it???

Thursday, September 07, 2006

...I hate the phone, but I wish you'd call...

Brent and I were driving in the car over Labor Day Weekend (finally, we went on a trip!), and we heard these lyrics - "and I hate the phone, but I wish you'd call" from a song titled "Fear you won't fall" by Joshua Radin. We looked at each other immediately - oh, can we ever relate!

How canst thou miscommunicate over the phone?....Let me count the ways..........

So, here are some borrowed, but fitting, thoughts I found on the subject:
Many people assume that the long distance relationship (or, for the purposes of this essay, the LDR) is a modern custom, born of technology—airplanes and telephones and Eisenhower’s interstate highway system. But it is actually an ancient ritual—the origins of the phrase ‘LDR’ can be traced to a Latin root roughly equivalent to “spend a lot of money and be miserable.” ...

Anyone who has ever been in one knows that the lifeblood of the long distance relationship is the written word. ...

If the written word is the lifeblood of the LDR, then the phone call is the cholesterol. On paper, you tend to be more reflective and less likely to overreact. But even if you do exaggerate, you still have the option of reconsidering your words before mailing your letter. With the phone you don’t have the luxury of a cooling-off period. You’re often lonely and feeling betrayed by the distance, which causes you to take it out on the other person. This leads to a lot of fights. And the most frustrating aspect of arguing on the phone is not the fact that you can’t see the other person or even the preclusion of instant-gratification-make-up [activities]. Instead, it’s that no matter what the topic or how angry you might be, the only thought going through your mind the entire time is, “I’m paying 25 cents a minute to be yelled at.” And this makes you angrier, which makes you fight more, which costs more money.

You would think that talking on the phone was just like talking face to face. But it’s not. You don’t have the opportunity to read facial expressions. You can’t see body language. Talking on the phone is not the same as talking in person just as speaking Latin is not the same as speaking Italian. Although some of the words are the same, there’s still going to be an awful lot of miscommunication. ...

If a relationship is like a rope, then distance is an anvil tied to the end of the rope—if the relationship is even slightly frayed, the distance will eventually snap it. If you can avoid LDRs you’ll have more happiness, more money and more [intimacy]. There is little to recommend them.

---Gary Cozine

Can I get an Amen?

Jess and Brent

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

"That there's an RV"

Hey everyone, it is B-rent again. I haven't been doing a good job a posting on here since I returned from Korea- I apologize. I have checked into my new base at Warner Robins and things are going fairly well I guess. I am glad I get to see Jessica every weekend, but the situation didn't get that much better. Not only do I have to be away most of the time, but we have accrued more debt due to my new living lifestyle. That's right, I live in an RV park. It isn't bad for the most part, but the ants here are terrible. There are war games everynight in my trailer when I get home. As soon as I walk in the door they are attacking me, so I spend half of the night trying to keep them at bay before they totally take over my crib on wheels. This is kind of old news, but I thought I would let you know how I was living. I have since purchased a ton of ant killer and spread it all over the ground around my trailer. Now, I only see the occassional ant.

Jess and I have been talking about me getting out and joining the Guard, so if anyone has any insight on this matter, let us know. I am soooo ready to separate! I will keep you posted on any news that comes in from the recruiters. I have requested information on everything Guard related and I am just waiting for someone to call me and answer my questions.

I am in my final month of school and I am ready to finally graduate. I am so burned out of school and I can't wait until I can just chill after work every now and then- it will be so awesome! Jessica is already asking me where I would like to do my Master's. She is killing me. I never thought I would even think about it, but I haven't ruled it out. I just want a break for a little bit and try to figure out a way where I can actually live with my wife.

I hope everyone is well. I will try to return soon with more updates on everything that is going on here in Warner Robins. Until then.....


Wednesday, August 16, 2006

another "you must watch"

You must watch:

If you want to know why I find this so funny (and scary), then read in the Sept 2005 archives an entry titled "The treadmill", and you might gain enlightenment :)


The latest

So...what has happened since the last update?

Our air conditioning unit did indeed go kaput (or "kaputt" for Uncle C), and we were forced by the horrible heat wave to buy a new unit. Maybe we could have sucked it up and stuck it out, but Cash was certainly suffering (I couldn't sleep for his panting, poor thing) as was our roommate. Recall that we had originally discussed going away on a trip, just the two of us, with Brent jokingly mentioning going to Fort Yargo due to our budget restrictions. Now that our restrictions are further restricted, we are thinking of popping up a tent out by our new AC unit and dreaming of the exotic resort that we could be visiting with that money :)

After that (incredibly hot and humid) incident, it was time to move Brent down to his new base. His parents were kind enough to pull our second domicile down there for us, we get it hooked up, and alas, THE AIR CONDITIONING DOES NOT WORK!

What is the deal with us and air conditioners? You may not want to invite us over for a while, at least until it cools down a bit, because apparently we are bad luck for air conditioners, and we don't want people cussing us. We don't know our status with furnaces yet, but will let you know as soon as we try and use ours :)

Now many of you may be stuck at the sentence where I said "pull our second domicile...", wondering what in the world is going on. Now don't be jealous, because not everyone gets to live this high, but Brent is living in a pimped out 26-foot camper trailer (courtesy of his parents) on an RV park (courtesy about 15 miles from his base. How blessed are we to have two places to live! :) It sleeps 6 or 7, so feel free to visit!!! It has all the amenities (including air now that it has been repaired). If you are claustrophobic, it is not for you.

Other than that, it is business as usual - Brent is beginning his last block of classes and will graduate at the end of September. We are thinking of having a GA football/graduation bash. I met my new class for the fall semester today - I was nice and did not lecture, just reviewed the syllabus. I'm sure they hate me anyway - I give pop quizzes. I know - mean, just plain mean. Oh well.

More later - I have pictures to post from various events.
Jess and Brent

Funny e-mail from Uncle C

The Collard Greens

An old black man lived alone in the country. He wanted to dig his yearly collard green garden, but it was always very hard work for him because the ground was hard. His only son, Junebug Jankins III, who used to help him, was in prison. The old man wrote a letter to his son and described his predicament.

"Dear Junebugg Jankins the III,
I am feeling pretty bad because it look like I won't be able to plant my collard green garden this year. I'm just getting too old to be digging up a garden plot. If you were here my troubles would be over. I know you would dig the plot for me.

A few days later he received a letter from his son...

"Dear Daddy Jankins,
Whatever you do, don't dig up that garden. That's where I buried the BODIES.
Junebugg Jankins III"

At 4 a.m. the next morning, FBI agents and local police arrived and dug up the entire area without finding any bodies. They apologized to the old man and left.

That same day the old man received another letter from his son...

"Dear Daddy Jankins,
You can go ahead and plant the collard greens now. That's the best I could do under the circumstances.
Junebugg III"

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Trailer for an upcoming documentary

Please take a minute out of your day to watch the following movie trailer for the “Darius Goes West” film. This is a documentary film that follows a group of previous Clarke Middle Students (where I worked part time last year) as they take their friend Darius (who has Duchene Muscular Dystrophy) across the country in an RV to look at how wheelchair accessible areas are, to raise awareness for MD, and ultimately to attempt to get MTV to “pimp” his wheelchair. The film is well on it’s way to being completed, and the trailer is very touching.


Wednesday, August 09, 2006

You must watch!

This is called "The Evolution of Dance"



The latest chapter of the book (that I should be writing :) should be titled as follows:

How I Hit The Weight-Loss Wall And Then Fell Off The Weight-Loss Wagon



Monday, July 31, 2006

Going to MIA!

Congratulations from Lynn Flahive and Al DeChicchis, 2006 Convention Program Co-Chairs, on the acceptance of your paper for the 2006 ASHA Convention in Miami Beach, Florida! Please read and keep this important email!

Session Number: 1702
Poster Board 86 Title: Informing Clinical Stuttering Practice Through Basic Research in Neuroplasticity Session Format: Poster
Day: 11/18/06
Room: Hall D
Location: Miami Beach Convention Center

Woo-hoo! This is a poster and manuscript I am developing with colleagues at UGA and UK. I'm very excited!

Quick update

Hello there
I know it has been an incredibly long time since we have updated the blog, and we apologize. It has just been so CRAZY here!

Let me see if I can gloss over the past few weeks events:
-> Brent finally returned home!
-> The pets fell in love with him all over again!
-> A few lunches and dinners with family and friends.
-> My birthday.
-> Lots of homework for both of us. I’m in the middle of summer finals right now.
-> I have begun my pilot study for my treatment research – it is crazy and exhilarating and exciting and scary.
-> Lots of housework. We remodeled the kitchen with Dad’s help. Just found out we are going to have to replace our air conditioning unit. Have appointments this week for the plumber, tree guy, and the appliance repair guy – it seems that everything in our house is simultaneously falling apart. This is not good – we are so broke!
-> Brent has yet to find a place to live in Warner Robins, but we are closing in on a solution.

We have not really had the opportunity to go away for a little vacation since his return, but plan to do this soon during the short break between our classes. Due to budget constraints, Brent is thinking Fort Yargo :). I don’t even care - I can’t wait – we need the break.

More later

Friday, July 07, 2006

서울 생존자 (Seoul survivor)

Hello everyone, this is my last Korean blog ever. I am chillin' at the airport in Seoul right now and I am about 2 hours from getting on my plane. I got here too early this morning, but I didn't want to take any chances with traffic, possible typhoons or whatever craziness that will keep me here any longer. I can't tell you how happy I am to finally come home. It is been a long and tough year, but my time here wasn't that bad. I made a lot of friends, played a lot of golf and got 90% of my degree completed. I miss home like crazy and can't wait to eat edible food again. I am pretty sure that I will get sick in some way when I get home. This tends to happen to me when I go through major changes in eating habits, time changes and climate. If you don't believe me, just ask Jessica how many days I was sick during my 22 days home for Christmas.

Well, I want to thank you all for looking after Jessica while I was gone. She had to deal with a lot of stuff by herself and handled it very well considering the circumstances. The military lifestyle is not fair to her and I plan on doing something about it in 19-20 months. I will be separating as promised! I know this makes her very happy- it does me also. It's not cool when you spend only 2 years with someone and yet we have been married for 5. Anyway, I have to get going. Like I said, I don't want to miss my plane for any reason. What if they bump my time up or something? 19 hours to go!

나중에, (Later)

사랑, (Love)


Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Your update about the update

For a heart-stopping moment there, we were fearful that the latest events in Asia might prevent Brent's return home. However, they are pushing him along according to the plan - he has been moved to the hotel for his final days there, and all seems well. (He is also enjoying the hotel - it has a comfortable bed, and he has been sleeping on an extremely uncomfortable one for a year now.)

So, God willing, he will be home this weekend as planned. Please keep him in your thoughts and prayers during the tense times over there and during his trip home.

(Thanks Hol for your concerned call, and thanks Jason for your support today - I know I was extremely out of sorts at school, and must have been a pain.)

Love - Jess

Your update about the Korea mess

Monday, July 03, 2006

In memory

In memory of Uncle Jay Strickland, a wonderful and loving man. Love - Jess

"One wears his mind out in study, and yet has more mind with which to study.

One gives away his heart in love, and yet has more heart to give away.

One perishes out of pity for a suffering world, and is the stronger therefore.

So, too, it is possible at one and the same time to hold life and let it go."

-- Milton Steinberg

Sunday, July 02, 2006

The Superman experience

A few of us met up to watch Superman Returns at IMAX. Thanks Schawna, Vince, Katie, Chas, Mom, Pops, and Jonathan for making the lunch fellowship and movie very enjoyable.

/\ My love's - my bro and my nephew.

/\ I bought these Superman sunglasses for my nephew in New York. He just HAD to wear them the rest of the day, except for when he was wearing his IMAX glasses of course.

The movie was very good - every one of us enjoyed it very much.

Kobi's (non) birthday celebration

/\ Me, Kob, Tyrus, KWoo -> We gathered at Jillian's for some fun and games for Kobs birthday. Good food, some friendly air hockey, basketball, and Need for Speed, good company, good drinks - we had a great time.

/\ Shamira, JR, Tiwanna, Sharon, and Lisa -> Waiting for the DJ to show up, but he was a no-show :(

/\ Kobs, me, and Tyrus

Introducing Mr. and Mrs. Thom

Introducing Mr. and Mrs. Thom
June 24, 2006

/\ Nate and Sarah - aren't they lovely?

/\ Sarah and I at her reception. The ceremony was simple and wonderful. They took advantage of the opportunity to tell people about the love of Christ and about the joy and sanctity of marriage.

\/ Jason and I chillin' at the reception. It was a dessert reception - DANGEROUS!

\/Jason and Colby

Father's Day 2006

/\ Just being a little silly :)


\/ We enjoyed church, and then went for a fabulous feast at Pappadeaux's.

Father's Day 2006

/\ Pops and his girls and boys. We gathered for dinner and had a great time.


Thursday, June 29, 2006

Grad school stuff

While seeking advice on how to deal w/ my current low points related to doc program, found this info, thought it was interesting, thought I should share it w/ my fellow grad student friends and family, and also give insight into what I am going through:
-- It's not easy, but it does get easier to stand the isolation. You may not want to stand it, (and you shouldn't have to stand it). I didn't want to, but the inertia was there.-- My single best piece of advice is this: Barring extraordinary situations like test cramming and lecture preparation, there is a finite amount of work that you can accomplish in a given day. Figure out what this amount is and then budget for it. Wake up as early as you can and get it done. Then live your life.
--About 44,000 doctoral degrees are conferred nationally each year, according to the U.S. Department of Education. Although there are no hard figures, anecdotal evidence suggests that as many as half of all doctoral candidates never complete their dissertations.
Writing a dissertation is very isolating, students say. Advisers can be busy with their own work or don't offer the guidance certain students need. Even if the relationship with academic advisers is amicable, nebulous deadlines make it hard to be held accountable.
"You're basically rudderless out there on the big ocean by yourself," said Bari, who found her coach through an advertisement at her university.
The term itself -- Ph.D. -- is shrouded in a powerful mystique. Those three letters can be intimidating to the person pursuing them, symbolizing a high level of expertise and authority on a subject. The psychological barriers of perfectionism, procrastination and pressure keep many otherwise motivated people from completing their dissertations.
"I needed someone to kick my ass," said Bari, who turned down teaching jobs this year in order to concentrate on her dissertation, which she expects will exceed 300 pages.
Earning a Ph.D. takes an average of five years, but may take as long as 10. And years of frustration and lack of productivity can leave doctoral candidates forgetting why those three letters were so important in the first place.
"I thought about quitting many, many times," said Susan Neufeld, 32, who has been working on a doctorate in applied developmental psychology at Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, Calif., since 1998. "I would have fantasies of burning everything when I was done -- a big bonfire."

Monday, June 26, 2006


I just posted my pictures for golf day, but I wanted to warn you of my personality in case you don't know how I roll. If you look up "fool" in the dictionary you will either see a picture of me or you will come across my name as a synonymous term. I have random pictures posted and I put a brief explanation of each picture, so I hope you enjoy.

See you in 12 days,


My golf pictures as promised

Here I am getting ready to get my golf on. I am loosening up in preparation to beat my buddy Smitty. There is that fool behind me getting his practice on as well.
Smitty and I taking another picture. I don't know who that chick is... she just jumped in the picture and smiled. Just kidding, that is my friend Francine. She plays golf with us a lot as well. While Smitty and I always compete, she and my other buddy Chappy always compete against other. They are pretty close score-wise. They argue like they are an old married couple. It is funny. I know I say "Good Lord" like 50 times on this day because they can never agree on who shot what.... pretty hilarious.

The fellas

Yet another picture before we take off. I know, I know... my eyes are closed. I am meditating searching for my inner focus. Or, I possibly fell asleep- I don't really recall this photo being taken.

It could get Hairy out there

Here I am consulting Hairy before I dust off my counterparts. He always gives me useful tips on how to approach every course. Thanks Hairy.

Talk about a tough course

Here is another random picture of me teeing off at a par 3. Don't mind the guns in the background. It is a semi-safe golf course with possible unexpected hazards that could drop in, but never worry because I always wear my protective gear for these special occassions.

Mr. Birdie

This was a good hole. I just drained a 40ft putt for birdie and Smitty (left) was like "noooooooooo" and Chappy (middle) was laughing. These are my two golf buddies that got me through difficult times. Chappy is going to come to GA to visit me in the future, so get ready to meet a wild and crazy dude. Chuck, you and Chapstick will get along fine- he is a hardcore Earnhardt fan too.

Gettin' ready to get our eat on

This is a picture of me and my partna' Keith starving after a long day of golf. I think we were the last ones to get our food. It was good when we finally got it. They could have put my plate back in the cabinet and used it later.
Here is my boy Keith and his team being recognized by everyone at the golf tournament dinner. Unfortunately for Keith, his team was recognized for coming in last place. They received a voucher for free golf lessons for the entire team. He wasn't too mad because we were just talking about him taking some lessons next week. See, it is true- Ask and you shall receive!

Monday, June 12, 2006

Awwww Yeah

Hey everyone, I am checking in like I always do (not often enough according to some). I know I haven't been a good blogger as of late, but I am trying to turn over a new leaf- more follow- through if you will. Man, I don't talk like that- jeez, Jess is rubbing off on me. I am becoming semi-edumacated I guess. I'm sorry, I don't know what is wrong with me. I just got done with 4 hours of homework and I am exhausted. Outprocessing my squadron is also a lot of hardwork, but boy is it fun. I have noticed a little extra giddy-up in my step as of late. I am very excited about coming home. As you can see from the countdown above, I will be home very soon. It has been a tough year for Jess and I and we are ready for it to be over. I won't be home home, but I will be very close to home and that is so much better than our current situation. I think we, for the most part, handled the situation very well. Vonage was a lifesaver (and $$ saver) for this difficult time. If you don't know what Vonage is, let me know and I will send you an email. It is awesome and saves a ton of money if you make a lot of long distance calls.

Well, now its time to say goodbye to all my blogger friends. Kobi, you thought I was going somewhere else with that, didn't you? As Jess would say, "you right!"

I hope everyone is doing well with whatever they have going on. Oh yeah, I had a weird and crazy idea of taking a lot of pictures of me in my room from various perspectives, so I could give you a view of my life in Korea. It is really stupid, but I got inspired by Jess and her many awesome pictures (pts. for me). My pictures were going to be my attempt to make everyone laugh. For example, I was going to show me doing homework, watching T.V., picking my nose or show a slight view of me in the bathroom, but I think Jess would kill me. I was laughing too hard during the event in the bathroom and I think my suitemate thought I was drunk or was having other issues so I nixed the whole idea. Anyway, I have a golf tournament coming up on the 23rd and I thought I would take some pictures of the people that I hang out with the most and of us having a good time playing small ball. I will post them shortly thereafter. Well, I have to get to bed. Talk to you later.

Love, Brent

Saturday, June 10, 2006


A friend of mine needs this message right now, and I read this quote every day, so I thought I would just go ahead and share it with all of you.

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." -- Theodore Roosevelt

Also - look below - I have posted many many pics and also augmented the TRI commentary. And as Liz has said so eloquently on her blog - "...for the love of mankind, leave a comment so I know you're out there."

As I look back at the blog, I feel so blessed at the fullness of life, yet it also saddens me - Brent should be in these pictures too. We have lived so much of our lives apart, and I miss him so much. Luckily, we are very close to having him (near) home.

Love - Jess

NY - Out and about

/\ Having midday margarita's at The Happy Hour in Greenwich Village

/\ Mr. GQ posing in Washington Square Park
\/ Pics from the Staten Island Ferry experience

\/ Our friends from Germany at the HA! Comedy Club in Times Square. We had so much fun - the comedians were hilarious. We laughed so hard our faces and stomachs were hurting. The next day when we were eating at the Heartland Brewery, we recognized a member of the audience and Kobi went over to say hello (she's crazy!). It ends up he was a casting agent, said Kobi's laugh was enchanting, and gave her his card. Crazy huh? I know my laugh is loud and memorable, but it didn't get the "enchanting" vote :(

So, really quickly, many of you have asked "Why New York?" Well, first of all, we (me, Kobs, and Charlton) have an unofficial pact to take trips to various locations all over the world at least every two years. In Fall 2004, I was afforded the opportunity to visit Charlton in Munich. This year, we converged in New York City, and we are already planning a 2008 trip to Canada.

Kobi, Charlton, and I stayed with friends in NY - UGA alumni, Go DAWGS!. Erik is a teacher and Tituss is a musician and currently performs in a Broadway musical called Jersey Boys. Between the two of them, we had easy access to sites and transport close to Penn Station and the Lincoln Center, respectively. Old friends from our Chateau Elan days - and old roommates of mine (Marc and Kristi) - joined us on Saturday. We had such a great time! I took something like 150 pictures, and obviously I can't post them all, so here is a sample.

NY - Our Hosts

/\ Charlton, Kobs, and Erik, walkin' on the West Side

/\ Our host - Tituss. (Please keep in mind that this picture was taken at 1 in the morning :)

/\ The soon-to-be-famous Tituss giving us a private concert. His voice, his lyrics, his music - I wanted to cry it was so beautiful. We stayed up a couple of mornings singing with each other - he pulled out some old Bette Midler stuff for me to sing. It was so enjoyable. I look forward to visiting him again one day.


/\ This says it all.

/\ The future plan for the WTC/ground zero site.