John Mann

John Mann

Food, fun, and life...

We all continue to change over time. Today I woke up realizing I need to change. I am no longer 20 years old and I can't eat or act like I am. We grow up and things change. I am not close to a lot of people, I don't crave membership or acceptance like I used to. Now I do things for the right reasons. I have an amazing wife who listens and takes great care of me. We both have little tolerance for ignorant people but amazing patience for each other. I'm speaking in very vague terms but I will clarify now. I need to eat better. I went to Jim and nicks BBQ last night and that with a sushi buffet the night before and chic-fil-a, orange julius, and some coffee did me in last night. I guess God allows us to repeat lessons, over and over until we truly change for the better. Today I begin my diet change. Real conscious eating and correct portions, basically a quarter of what you get served in American restaurants. I can only try, and when I make a poor choice, I start over that moment and make a better choice next time. I now know 3 athletes who I truly admire who are vegan and jiujitsu black belts. Should have started a long time ago, but I start now.

For those that are curious, Jim and Nicks biscuits are great and so is the Mac and cheese. The BBQ is good and would settle for it against anything in northwest, but I have now tried Shane's, swallow in the hollow, spiced right, dreamland, and Jim and Nicks... And the best overal is Dreamland. Great BBQ, great sides, consistent service, and great vibe in the place. Ok, next topic...

Fun. I have never enjoyed life so much as I have with my wife. That being said, I have travelled the world, scuba dived in Maui, had a picnic in Paris, laid on the beaches on Thailand, partied in roppongi square in tokyo, and wander the streets of New York until sunrise. That is what you do when you want to be happy... You try all sorts of stuff, you go looking for Ms Right... You keep busy so you don't think about how lonely it is at times. But now, shopping for a mattress, having a BBQ dinner and falling asleep watching tv is a perfect day... I can't imagine a better day. I read that and laugh because I have heard people say crap like that before.... I didn't understand then. How can wandering a mall with some girl be better than dancing in a NYC club, or flying to Europe? It is because the person not the experience creates the happiness...it is the happiness we search for all our lives... The "one". We all want to be a priority, we never think anyone could put us as a priority over themselves, or their own happiness... Well, I'm here to tell you that for the right person, you can be a priority, and they will be one for you. So what makes me happy, having morning coffee with my wife, going to jiujitsu and coming home sharing about a new technique I learned, holding her hand when we walk and laugh at others who are still looking, knowing we can't tell them anything, because no one could tell us back then. So to friends who I have lost contact with, old friends that are still around, and new friends who are learning about me... Be happy and share that with others it will make the world better.

Quick side note about shopping... Buying a mattress is a bunch of marketing crap. Buy a mattress that is comfortable for you... Ignore the latex, foam, pillow top, air breathable, blah, blah, blah.... Lay on it, you will know. Don't even bother with the $4000 mattresses. They are mostly hype. We got a Macy's bed for under $800 with box spring and frame. Sales people are annoying.

Final topic that needs to be covered... Politics. The big presidential election is Tuesday. Don't forget to vote. I could stop right there, and not go any further, but after watching the newsroom this weekend, I need to say a little something. Will McAvoy asked one question that really hit me... Everyone is saying how our freedoms are limited... He asked, what freedom did you have before the president got elected that you don't have today. The mock candidate started talking about obamacare and he stopped him and said, did you change your doctor, has your medical insurance changed, did you even notice? It's true. I haven't lost any right or truthfully gained anything since Obama took office. The last president that directly affected me, was George W Bush on February 1, 2002. The patriot act hurt my right to privacy, fair and speedy trial, and some others I'm sure. That was over 10 years ago and my life is going fine. The economy is in shambles, our country's health is the worst it has ever been, and big business is running our government. That being said, I sit here typing on my iPad2, in my house, watching the pregame show on my 50" tv, and realize I have it pretty good. Now I know, I am not in 1% that is "rich". But I'm also not in poverty. I've worked hard (sometimes) to get here. A lot of luck, good timing, and random opportunities... But what does America need now? Apparently jobs. Without jobs, then healthcare is out the window because we can't afford it... But I get phone calls or emails everyday for a new job offer in some part of the country. Why? Because I'm in the tech field. What about farmers, steel workers, construction workers, manual laborers. Those are the jobs we need... But let's dive deeper... Why? Well, because these hard working people need money to take care of their families. Why do I have 10 job offers a week and they don't? Because of my skill set... So lets train them right? Well, can anyone learn to be a developer? I say no. Can anyone train to be in the nfl? Of course not. There are innate talents that we have to excel at certain areas. The problem is we are convincing our children that they can be anything they want to be, and if you saw me as a child and I told you I wanted to play in the nfl, you would ask what else... I was 5'5" and about 127 lbs. that is not an nfl player, or nba. Luckily I enjoyed learning things, and I went to educational route. I have a friend who my wife asked what does he want to do when he grows up...his response was, I want to be happy. I love that answer. I don't care what you do, but if you are happy, then the world is better for you being in it. So happiness doesn't come from an election, from a job, or from money... It comes from within on how you perceive yourself. Money makes things easier, and you can be passionate about a sport, a candidate, or even a cause... But think long term... If your cause is to cure cancer, what happens the next day after they cure it. Are you deflated because you don't have a passion, or you shift to MS, or HIV, or poverty, or, whatever... It is important to help others, nothing is more rewarding, but remember that your passion does not have to be everyone else's. if we all had the same passions, then the world would be even more a mess. We need the diversity, we need people to fight for their causes... But when others don't agree, realize that they are different, not always wrong, sometimes just different. I'm sure this is going to start some debate, but our freedom here is evident... We can shout from rooftops what we believe without getting arrested. We can write whatever we want without fear. We will upset people and encourage people, but that is how America grows... Different opinions, different ideas... That is how innovation happens. I support women's rights, I am proud of the second amendment, and I don't think any government should say who people can and cannot marry. Separation of church and state...what happen to that? I also believe that our economy needs help too. So who do you place your vote with? Social reform, economic reform, what about foreign policy, and the wars going on...what about Libya, Syria,Iraq,and Egypt. Why are we toted as the world peacekeeper, Monroe Doctorine? What about places that don't want our help? Just some thoughts... Regardless of all of that, we have an amazing ability as citizens to vote and improve our country... So go out there and vote for your topic.

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