A Tennesse Saturday

2 09 2010

Welcome to the University of Tennessee. A place where this Saturday it will be the best place in the Country.  As a 5th year Senior I have appointed my self as team captain.  Welcome to a place where football is tradition and the students are the faithful followers.  This is Tennessee.

As a part of the Vol faithful we always cheer the Vols, but there other aspects that are not discussed and I feel that they should. See here, we have something called tradition and pride.  This is place where fans arrive early and leave late.  So freshman please allow me to hit you with some knowledge that I have gathered while attending this University.

1.) Tailgating–  This is essential to any game day activity.  This is where friendships are made and stories that you may or may not end up telling your kids happen.  The only things necessary are food, drinks and a good attitude.  Pack that iPod you got for free with your mac with some good tunes and don’t forget the songs “Wagon Wheel”, “Rocky Top” and anything by Eric Church and Lil Wayne.

2.) The Walk-  Once you have filled your stomach with good food and discussed all of the reasons why the opponent will lose it is time for the walk.  This is the trip everyone takes to arrive at Neyland.  A place where legends such as Reggie White, Peyton Manning, Tee Martin and many others have given their all.  A place where the General commanded his “troops” and demanded perfection.  As you make your way to the stadium, it is essential to talk as much smack as possible.  I’m talking about good clean smack though since We are southern gentlemen and belles.  As you enter the gate make sure to take it all in.  As my last year as a student I find that the moment from the gate until you see the checkerboard end zones rival any rollercoaster ride in the US.  Once inside, find your seats and sit down, because once the game starts you’re not sitting down.  If you do sit down I will personally find you and give you a lecture.

3.)  The T-  The pregame tradition of opening the T gives me chills every time (currently occurring while I write) it happens.  It possibly is one of the loudest moments of any UT game and there’s nothing better than seeing Smokey run through the T howling.  As the Tennessee state flag comes running through along with the Power T flag take a moment to reflect that this is why you go to Tennessee.

4.) The Student section-  I like to consider the Student section the Thunderdome.  A place where only half the people actually have tickets, but nobody ever questions.  A place where alcohol is passed and coke is a mixer not a beverage.  A place where friends high-five total strangers and the only place two dudes can hug it out.  For four quarters we are more than a student body, we are family.  At halftime we sing the Alma Mater.  If you don’t know it better start because this will save you one day on Spring Break (Ask any of my room mates).  Also this should deserve the same respect as the National Anthem.  If you don’t show respect I pray you don’t sit by me (once again ask my room mates).

Overall the Volunteer tradition is something that started way before me and will continue to endure long after my tenure here at Tennessee.  Everybody please soak up every minute you can of this because once you graduate it’s not the same.  This will be  a tough year since our team is young, but I plan on treating it like  YMCA game.  The scores won’t matter unless we come out on top and everybody can go and get snacks after the game.  I have coined a new phrase for the season and I feel that it’s a perfect way to end this.

“We not win many games this year, However we will never lose faith, heart or a tailgate.”

-Kevin Edwards


Summer Movie Preview

28 04 2010

Well classes are winding down and the break that everyone anxiously awaits is getting closer.  One of my favorite activities is to watch movies and I would consider the summer the best time to enjoy these.  Not only are studios releasing big buck movies with over the top action and awesomeness, but it’s also a great excuse to escape the summer heat.  We all know the big gun movies that are coming out, but I want to talk about some of the lesser known ones that might spark interest for the jaded movie goers.

1. Kisses–  This movie is going to be released July 16th and definitely should be interesting.  Its about a boy and girl who run away from their homes.  Their accents make me assume that they are European, but I could be wrong.  Anyway the trailer makes me feel that it might tug on some heart strings the same way Nick and Nora did for me.

2.  Holy Rollers–  This movie will be released May 21st and is based on a true story.  You hardly see a movie about Hasidic Jews much less about them becoming drug smugglers.  It should be an interesting plot with the characters having to make some tough decisions.

3. Micmacs–  This final movie will definitely be a wild ride.  It releases May 28th and is definitely not for the easily distracted.  Subtitles will be throughout

the movie, but this quirky action/mystery should produce a couple laughs.

I will definitely be seeing the blockbusters as well and will end up doing the pay for one ticket but see multiple movies trick to be able to mark everything off my list.  I’m curious what everyone else is excited for?

Now playing: Duck Sauce – aNYway
via FoxyTunes

Well its been a While

26 04 2010

Well father time has caught up with me and I have not posted anything in quite a while.  The main problem was that this blog was briefly hijacked for a Spanish history class, which was as boring as it sounds.  After this class the only good thing to come from Mexico is margaritas and Cinco De Mayo and especially when the two are combined.  So if you find yourself trying to escape from studying for finals by all means explore the countless posts on Ancient Mayan history that I have wrote.  I have decided to come to the aide of Ross Moffitt and begin blogging because he is relentlessly being picked on for his writings at the house.  So why not become allies?  This blog is fairly open right now, but since I live the dream as a 22 year old I assume it will mainly consist around adult beverages and how to get the most out of them.  Highland Ave. knows how to throw a party and without the delicious nectar of Rocky Top many of these nights would be a major letdown.  So thanks for coming back and take a break and pop the top off of a cold one as I explain my journey of home brewing my own beer and getting the most out of Knoxville.

Túpac Amaru

22 11 2009

After reading the first hand accounts of Túpac there was one letter that stuck out to me.  This was the letter written to explain his death.  When he was captured the Spanish wanted to make sure that he would not come back.  The indigenous had come to view Túpac as immortal and much more than just a man. Not only did the Spanish find Túpac a threat, but they also captured his family and made sure he had to watch them suffer.  I found it interesting how the Spanish decided that they would tie him up to 4 horses and then make each horse go in all four directions to stretch his body out and rip him into pieces.  Túpac however did not go without a fight.  He was able to withstand this torture and the Spanish eventually stopped after not getting the results they wanted.  He was eventually killed, but this was not enough.  They cut up his body into pieces and sent them to different cities.  They also took his ashes and spread them over the mountains so he could not come back.  This was a outward expression by the Spanish to show the people that their beloved leader would no longer be there to help them.  I found these decisions to be brutal.  I hate stubbing my toe and the pain that ensues, so it is beyond anything I have ever experienced to think that someone could fight that much torture.  That takes a lot of heart and Túpac must have really believed in his cause to seek reforms from the king.

The encomienda

9 11 2009

The encomendero was a special job to have.  It was considered a rare and special job by the people of Peru.  In the book it listed that only 500 people held this title in Peru.  This job not only allowed them tributes from the encomienda, but also the freedom to have unlimited power.  This tribute included many things from goods and even services.  This unlimited power, however, left the indians at the mercy of the encomendero.  This usually meant harsh treatment and ill conditions.  These encomienda’s provided wealth to the encomendero, but money had to be spent in some areas.  One area was defense.  He had to defend this land that made him so profitable.

These select men who were awarded an encomienda usually were granted to them because of some feat that they completed.  This encomienda was more than just a social status.  It secured a way of life for them.  They were able to live comfortably, and also put their money in other ventures as well.  The endcomienda was almost fully reliant on the indians that worked it.  They were required to work the lands, but also had to do artisan trades as well.  These goods that he was able to sell allowed him to have guests to share his wealth, but he also developed enemies and had to keep a close eye on all.

Acosta and the Indians

1 11 2009

I found it interesting in the article how dedicated Acosta was to saving the souls on the indians.  He even claimed to have “a deep fondness” for them.  He makes the point that for there to be a mass amount of indians to be converted, the gospel must be presented in how it was intended to be.  The article does not specify how it was intended, but I assume he is talking about presenting the message with love and not greed.  It is hard to even understand why anyone would want to convert from their own gods after how they had been treated.  I would not want to be apart of a group that came and conquered my land and took all I had.  Acosta got it right when he thinks that it is the way the gospel is presented determines how effective it is.

He explains also though that all is not lost.  Even though the first impression of Catholicism was most likely a horrible experience there is no excuse to give up.  He talks about the early church and how people later came along and talked to people with bad experiences, but with the right teachers they proved to be “malleable like wax”.  This shows his dedication to making sure that all these people were shown the love of God no matter what.

This dedication for the people is to investigate.  Acosta was entered into the Jesuits at a young age.  Could his amount of time spent learning the spiritual practices blinded him to what the Andeans really wanted?  After learning over the past weeks about the lives and hardships of the Andeans I find it hard that they really need Christ specifically coal miners.  These are the type of people that need medical attention and food, not a book to read and hymns to sing.  I applaud Acosta and his efforts to save the Andeans, but his goals were not necessarily what I believe they really needed.

You Gotta Fight for Your Right…

18 10 2009

This week we discussed slavery in the Andean region.  Basically, going into this discussion I had little knowledge of the amount of people that were enslaved during this time.  Growing up I was always told that America was the center of the slave trade and that we were the people that instigated this whole system.  It is a formidable argument considering there was a war fought between the north and south with slavery being just one part of the argument.  However, This week I learned that there was just a little over 1.5 million slaves imported into Spanish America from 1451-1870.  This is a huge number especially when you look at the meager number of 399,000 that was imported into British North America.  These slaves were used mainly in the artisan trades like a blacksmith for example.  These slaves were unfortunately not respected or given the protection of the law as it seemed they should.

During this time slaves were allowed to sue their masters if they were mistreated.  This is a huge step for equality especially after we hear of all the horror stories that happened in America.  It is not until you look deeper that it is easier to see that these laws are more like formalities instead of strict rules to be followed.  It is true that they were able to demand better treatment through the legal process, but almost all the time they were on the losing end of the deal.  There were other ways however to demand respect.  These included sabotage, running away or direct disobedience.  After examining these I thought these slaves were cutting edge and fighting for their rights, but really these answers sucked.  Even if any of these solutions worked out flawlessly to the end there is no way that the masters would not punish them.  They were to many societal constraints on the system to allow these slaves to have true freedom.  It seems that these laws were there as merely words to give the slaves some hope in a dire situation.  One question that I have is what if any would be the best solution for slave if he was dissatisfied?