May 30, 2012


By Andrew at 12:42 PM

Sorry not to post at all last week, I had a crazy last couple of weeks with my first wrap party for “Madagascar 3” and overtime for some changes at work.  I have also had plenty of housekeeping to do, especially after I returned from my trip east.  Anyhow, I hope to be back to normal programming as of next week, and I have a rather interesting topic that I thought of this morning that I may tackle.  Have a great week!

May 16, 2012

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

By Andrew at 8:28 AM

Huntington, Indiana, from the sky

This past week I traveled back to the Midwest for a couple of days for my sister’s college graduation and to visit with family. This was the first time that I have been back there since starting my job in the San Francisco area, so it was a much appreciated visit to more familiar surroundings. I was back for less than a week, but I was still able to visit many people, including friends and family who were in from anywhere as far away as Brazil (yes, the country!) to Eaton, Ohio.
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May 7, 2012

Frank Abagnale

By Andrew at 5:46 AM

Last week I attended an extremely intriguing lecture by Frank Abagnale, the man who, during his early years, traversed the globe by assuming the role of an airline pilot, pediatrician, and lawyer. He conned his way through millions of dollars worth of check fraud, and his life was the subject of the 2002 movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks called “Catch Me if You Can.”

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May 2, 2012

Playing Pretend

By Andrew at 1:35 PM

As children, we participated in many activities intended to prepare us for our adult life.  This was made even more evident to me recently as I noticed that I have started to become even more involved in activities that I was a part of when I was younger.  Previously, community involvement seemed to be something that I participated in merely for the social involvement.  However, I have recently witnessed my progression from trivial involvement to a more meaningful participation in community activities.

Children enjoy activities from an early age where they are able to “play house” and otherwise “pretend” into existence their perception of what it is that adults do on a daily basis.  That is why “practical” toys still share a shelf with arguably more “exciting” toys such as robots, princesses, and unicorns.  Toy kitchens and miniature workshops have held the attention of many a child, even when the choice of a more fantastical form of playtime is available.  Both realistic and imaginative play are valuable in the formative years, yet play based upon a counterpart in the grown-up world becomes especially reinforced as it is repeated throughout life.

Moving into the school years, especially when approaching late-elementary to early middle-school, we became more involved in organized activities such as music, sports, clubs, and charities.  Many of these collaborations translate directly into activities that are a part of adult community involvement.  The particular change from childhood to the school years becomes more about the leadership and personal interest in perpetuating the organization or activity that they are a part of.  This interest permits them to become a larger part of the organization’s activities, possibly inspiring them to create their own organizations or endeavors. The real key to taking advantage of developmental opportunities, though, is making use of collegiate communities.  While earlier opportunities involve adults in defining leadership roles, college groups are oftentimes spearheaded almost entirely by fellow students.  The responsibility and trust put in leaders of these clubs displays a confidence in the ability of students to manage and participate in self-contained organizations.  Yet in case there would be issues, faculty members are nearby if the focus of the group were to stray.

While I am by no means an expert in community groups, I definitely feel prepared for the opportunities that I have had so far.  Realizing the other day how much I had missed volunteer work made me think about the other activities that I had previously participated in and their real-world equivalents.  For example, while I do not have any plans to run for office, I would not rule out a reprise of my student government role in the public forum in the future.  Similarly, I would eagerly await an opportunity to participate in or even organize a film or technology club.  Yet even something as simple as contributing a couple of hours of work over a weekend to help out with community projects can be a huge benefit not only to those being helped, but to me as well.  Volunteering is just one of the many “adult” endeavors that I learned as a child from playing pretend.

April 25, 2012

John Carter

By Andrew at 11:47 AM


When writing, I can only cover so many “serious” topics before I need to switch gears and consider something a little more lighthearted. That is one reason why you will see me addressing such a wide variety of topics here on my blog. Another reason is that I have a very broad range of interests, and the topics that I select each week tend to be topics that I am currently considering, reflecting on, or discovering myself. And today’s topic is a movie I recently saw called “John Carter.”

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April 18, 2012

Why Take the Hard Route?

By Andrew at 12:18 PM

Motivation.  The quality that is said to differentiate between the “successful” and the complacent.  But is it really that simple?  Is motivation simply a character trait that some have but others do not?  Rather than being a simple dichotomy, perhaps there is more to purpose and incentive than merely wanting something for oneself. continue »

April 11, 2012

Follow the Leader

By Andrew at 3:14 PM


A few days ago I was listening to the radio on my way back from a hike.  Now, I do not normally listen to “talk” radio, preferring music stations most of the time, but with the hills on the peninsula in the Bay area I sometimes “channel surf” when out of range of frequented stations.  While scanning the stations, a program on NPR caught my attention in which the guest speaker was discussing his new book about how all types of leadership heirarchies are unwarranted.  To me, the most ironic part of the whole interview was that this author seemed to want to “lead” this “leaderless revolution!”

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April 4, 2012

Websites, Portfolios, and Blogs

By Andrew at 11:02 AM

This past week I had the opportunity to consult with a friend of mine on creating a personal website.  This reminded me of the recent renovation of my own website, which, even if you did not notice, almost completely changed the way I manage my website behind the scenes.  But the beauty of the technologies that I used is that I was able to transfer all my previous posts, themes, and content to my new setup with minimal changes to the front end. continue »

March 28, 2012

Tron: Legacy

By Andrew at 9:18 AM

There are several movies that I especially appreciate for various reasons.  Oftentimes, I will appreciate a specific aspect of a movie, even though other elements may be sub-par.  If I were to list some of the movies that I thought were the best-made movies of all time, I would consider titles such as “The Dark Knight,” “Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King,” or “Inception.”  But in selecting my favorite movies, I do not necessarily define them as the best-made movies of all time.  Instead, when selecting something as subjective as my “favorite,” I choose according to what I enjoy most. continue »

March 21, 2012

The Ins and Outs of Relaxation

By Andrew at 11:53 AM

Introverts are often assumed to be anti-social.  While this is not always the case, it is more likely true than with extroverts.  However, a more accurate definition that I have learned to embrace over the past several years describes introversion as the social preference of tending toward single-participant activities in order to rest and recharge.  Introspective relaxation is not the only way to relax, but for certain individuals it can be the most effective. continue »

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