With Malice Toward None; With Charity For All

February 28, 2012 Leave a comment

I read that quote in the latest Esquire in an article about “the better toast” and instantly appreciated its meaning. The quote comes from Abraham Lincoln’s second inaugural address. The author writes “but a toast is a wish, and whether you believe in karma or not, it is always better to wish good than ill; far better to follow Shakespeare and “drink down all unkindness.”

This quote is more than a simple toast. It is a belief; a way of life that many do not follow. When you are wronged, a common reaction is to want revenge on the wrongdoer. I have been guilty of wanting revenge or vengeance on someone for any  infraction. And for what, the brief feeling of satisfaction of knowing karma had made its presence felt?

When karma reigns, does that fix everything for you? No.

This may not come across as the most charitable thought, but if people spent the energy on fixing a wrong for themselves instead of any ill will at a fellow human being, that would figure to fix many issues across the board.

It is no longer worth the effort and time worrying about what people did to you. It is worth the effort and time to spend fixing what is wrong and bettering yourself.

Save yourself before saving the world.

I am applying the meaning behind the quote in my life more. Additionally, there will be something meaningful behind my toasts for years to come.

An additional side note about toasts: I recently learned it is good luck to look the person you are cheersing with. Keep that in mind, friends!

Is there a quote you use when you cheers or toast someone? What would you toast if you were with me?

I close with a toast to my friends, readers of this blog and my enemies. With malice toward none; with charity for all.

Jason

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My Photo Shoot With High Heel Photography

February 6, 2012 Leave a comment

As we all waved goodbye to 2011 and went into 2012, that brought on the unofficial restart and new beginning of many lives. “A new year, a new you” is a common mantra for people across the world. Goals, resolutions and to-do’s are created and hopefully achieved. One of my to-do’s: have a photoshoot.

Lucky for me, I know Nikki Duff of High Heel Photography, a Professional Portrait Photographer in Minneapolis. She has been a long-time friend and wife to my college roommate Nick. Nikki had me come out to St. Paul (yes, I was on the wrong side of the train tracks :)) and I quickly learned why she is good at what she does. While I saw random pieces, she saw opportunities for great photos. Below are the results of her efforts. Thank you very much to Nikki for her work.

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This backdrop produced some of my favorites. And I thought it was just an old door.

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The basic pose. Nice to have a photo where I show a smile.

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Again, the great blue backdrop is used. This may be my favorite from the shoot.

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Yeah, I have mad hops! Cool action shot.

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Of course argyle would be a part of the shoot. This might be the new photo for #ArgyleFriday 🙂

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Deep thoughts, by Jason Douglas.

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Am I looking mischievous, or secretly happy?

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Jason Douglas: happy.

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Am I: a) confused, b) pouting, or c) not liking what I am smelling, likely from my cooking. 🙂

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This picture says it all. Professional. Somewhat tan looking. Happy.

Again, I want to thank Nikki for taking some time out of her Saturday to do the photoshoot and all of her work on the photos to make them look awesome. If you’re looking for a professional photographer in Minneapolis, make sure to give Nikki a look.

Jason

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Skating at the Xcel Energy Center

February 1, 2012 Leave a comment

Those of you who know me well are well aware of my ice skating ability. That ability is non-existent. Born and bred in Minnesota, also known as the State of Hockey, I have only skated four times in my life.

Until January 26th.

First, a big shout-out to Garon Rowland for hooking me up with this amazing opportunity. It was an open skate for staff, family and friends at the Xcel Energy Center and Garon was kind enough to invite me.

I must note: while skating, I did not fall once! However, I did fall while on the ice. The story will be accompanied with a photo below.

Because seeing me skate is such a rare happening, pictures were taken.

Jason Douglas skating

I am close to the boards so my laps would cover more distance, never for balance. 🙂

Jason Douglas fast skater

I’m starting to feel confident about my skating ability. I’m cruising behind one of the goals here.

Jason Douglas skilled at skating

Now I am going too fast. If the picture is blurry, I apologize. That is what happens when you are going so fast the camera could not keep up.

Jason Douglas penalty box

I ended up in the penalty box for skating too fast.

Jason Douglas running man fail

Again, seeing me on the ice above is not a result of me wiping out while skating. After my speedy laps on the ice, I stopped to rest. However, I felt compelled to try the running man in skates. Note: I cannot do the running man in shoes on normal ground. Why I attempted such a difficult dance move on ice is beyond me. Clearly, it did not work out well.

Jason Douglas center ice

Standing at center ice. The view of the Xcel Energy Center from the ice is amazing and completely different than from any seat in the stadium.

Again, thank you to Garon for the opportunity. I know there are people more deserving to be out there and people who are much better skaters. Rest assured, I enjoyed this as much as possible. It was an experience I will never forget.

Jason

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London Olympics Ban Volunteers From Social Media? My Thoughts on 96.3 KTWN.

January 9, 2012 4 comments

An announcement today by the London Olympics Organising Committee (LOCOG) stated that the 70,000 unpaid volunteers will not be able to use social media to mention details of their location, their role or any backstage information about athletes, celebrities or “dignitaries” on social media. However, the volunteers are welcome to disseminate any official London 2012-sanctioned information to their followers.

As a social media strategist, I have some educated opinions on this topic. This is where 96.3 KTWN comes into play. I have been invited to give my professional opinion on this during Tuesday’s morning show with Eric Perkins and Tony Fly at 6:30am.

I would love to get your thoughts on the Olympic volunteer ban. Share a comment that is worthy and I will mention it on the air. Hope you listen in and share your feedback!

Update: I have a link to the audio for my radio debut. Listen in and enjoy. Maybe you will hear me on the radio again in the very near future! Thank you all for your support!

Jason Douglas on 96.3 K-Twin

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Minor League Search, Professional Results

January 5, 2012 Leave a comment

Earlier this week, I was searching for a history of all minor league sports teams that have been in Minnesota. Some that come to mind: the Minneapolis Millers baseball, St. Paul Saints baseball, Minnesota Moose hockey, and the Minnesota Thunder soccer club.

However, in my search, I did not find any of the above mentioned in the first four results on Google. I did find the Minnesota Wild as the highest ranked team.

Minnesota Wild minor league search result

I found it a bit humorous as there have been many minor league players promoted to the professional club and have times made it feel like it was the Houston Aeros skating and not the Minnesota Wild. Of course, that has no bearing on the search result.

If the Minnesota Wild is aware of this, they should not be happy about their ranking for this term. The only mention of minor-league affiliates on the Wikipedia page is regarding the Houston Aeros and Bakersfield Condors on the third paragraph.

I wonder if putting the one sentence mentioning the minor-league affiliates lower in the post would help change the ranking.

That is my odd search result of the week. Other than the Rick Santorum search controversy, have you seen anything odd that caught your eye?

Jason

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2011: A Year of Change and Learning. 2012: A Year of Finding.

January 3, 2012 2 comments

Entering 2011, I felt rather comfortable and happy with where things were in my life. I had an enjoyable, stable job. I had a great, stable relationship. I was healthy and looking forward to my second Grandma’s Marathon. I was ready for 2011 and everything it would bring.

I closed 2011 with a very new and enjoyable job. The great, stable relationship went a different direction and is no longer. Additional things and events made 2011 forgettable. Numerous people quit on me in 2011. It hurt. It sucked. It is something I will never forget. 2011 was not a complete wash. Every moment provides a learning experience.

What I learned in 2011:

  • I desperately need to learn how to relax and slow down at the right times.
  • I need to trust my instincts more and act on them. Too many times in 2011, my gut told me what was going on. For some reason, I rarely acted on my instincts and paid the price each time. For the record, my instincts were not wrong once.
  • While I communicate well in most situations, this is an area needing improvement in other aspects of life.
  • If you want to accomplish something, it needs to be a priority and some things will need to be sacrificed.
  • I learned so much about what I want out of myself, my family, friends and whoever I date next.
  • Often, I tell others to become more selfish. While giving is great, at some point you must consider yourself first. Jason, listen to yourself more.
  • I enjoy wearing glasses.

2012 is here and I could not be happier.

What will I do in  2012:

  • A bigger focus on my health. A healthy me will accomplish so much more.
  • A happy attitude in turning 30, or 29.2 🙂 It is better then the alternative.
  • Expand my horizons and enjoy more new experiences.
  • Get back into playing golf. It has been over two years since I have swung a club which is a gosh darn shame!
  • Expand my friendship base and network. I have said that I have too many friends. That has to be one of the dumbest statements to ever come out of my mouth.

2012 will be a better year than 2011 was. I am looking forward to new experiences, a new age and new memories. If you stick with me, I promise it will be worth your time.

Happy 2012 to you and yours!

Jason

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Banning Cellphone Calls While Driving is the Wrong Call

December 14, 2011 2 comments

As an avid and experienced cellphone user, I was intrigued by the National Transportation Safety Board’s recommendation to ban all cellphone usage while driving in the United States.

Banning texting while driving makes perfect sense. I have been guilty of texting in the past and know from experience that texting is a major distraction. Try staying in a straight lane while looking down at your phone. It is virtually impossible.

Banning voice messaging using apps such as Dragon Dictation also make sense. Yes, you are no longer typing a message. However, dictation services are not perfect and may misinterpret some words. Proofing a message is necessary. For that, opening the app and sending the message, you need to be looking at your phone.

The issue I have with the NTSB’s proposal is with banning calls while driving.

I am fortunate to have bluetooth in my car which has enabled me to use true hands-free calling. No interaction with my phone is required. The only interaction outside of driving  is to wake up the bluetooth device in the car which takes the same amount of time as changing a radio station. From there, I tell the bluetooth I want to make a call, state the name, verify it and wait for the call to connect.

Essentially, I am having a conversation with someone in the car. By banning cellphone calls, the NTSB is essentially banning talking to someone in the passenger or back seats. Seems preposterous, right?

While I recognize not everyone has bluetooth due to cost and age of their vehicle, there are other ways to become hands-free. Those options help minimize the necessary interaction on their phone which in theory, would help create more attentive drivers.

My proposal: ban cellphone calls for drivers who do not have a hands-free option. With that, offer a hands-free option to these drivers. In addition, make bluetooth devices standard in all vehicles sold in the US.

What are your thoughts on the NTSB’s proposal? Share  your take in the comments section below.

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