Thursday, October 30, 2008


I rode the motorcycle up to Everett to visit Marc yesterday afternoon. On the way home, the car in front of me decided to play it safe and not run the yellow left turn light onto I-5, leaving me second in line at the light.

Like many stoplights at on ramps to I-5, there was a bum sitting on the median divider with a sign. This bum's cardboard sign read "MCCAIN!" Ugh. Even the bums are going political.

As I'm waiting for the extraordinarily long light, the bum starts talking to the guy in front of me. I can see the driver reach into his loose change bin and then roll down his window. The bum takes the driver's change and flips around his sign, which now reads, "OBAMA!"

Now, either the bum heard this strategy somewhere else, or there is no way he should be living on the streets with those smarts... or maybe he knows something we don't know... *dons tinfoil hat*


Monday, October 27, 2008

Hanford Howl, 2008

This weekend was an absolute blast. I attended the Hanford Howl ultimate frisbee tournament for the second year in a row. It is an all-weekend affair of fun, frisbee, and booze! Unfortunately, I missed out on an impromptu blogger home game at The Chako's residence, and I'm sure I would have had a blast.

I drove down to Tacoma to pick up Josh on Friday around noon, then we drove the 250 miles over to Richland, WA. The drive over was lots of fun. At first, I was perturbed because the Honda Pilot has an Aux button, but no auxiliary jack to plug an iPod into! The Aux button does nothing! Luckily, the Pilot has XM Satellite Radio, so Josh and I messed around with that for the entire drive. We found a rocking XMLM channel that played "liquid metal" from big name bands like "Lamb of God" and "Cattle Decapitation" raaaawwwwwwk! Another favorite channel was the comedy channels up in the 150's, including David Cross, George Carlin and a few other skits that had us rolling. The Fall colors were amazing crossing the Cascades, lots of reds and oranges made the hillsides look like they were on fire.

When we arrived in Richland, the Atomic Alehouse welcomed us with open arms and the drinking began with a sampler while waiting for the rest of the Tacoma crew to show up and check into the hotel. We made a pitstop at the liquor store, then waited in the parking lot while watching "License to Kill." Our team theme was James Bond (w/ Bond girls), so we were researching by watching the kick-ass movie. Eventually the rest of the crew came trickling into town and I honestly don't remember much else from Friday night.

Saturday morning marked the beginning of ultimate for the weekend. Instead of dressing up like Bond, how many of my teammates were dressed--white dress shirt, blank pants/shorts, bowtie--I dressed up like Jaws--tan pants, suspenders, white shirt and a metal mouth of first tinfoil, then duck-tape. During our first game I quickly realized I needed to change the metal mouth somehow, because breathing through my nose while running around on a frisbee field just does not mix. I ended up folding the duct tape over and being able to breathe through my mouth, which made running much easier!

Our team, Moonrakers, went 4-0 on the day Saturday, and I scored a callahan in our last game of the day, which I mac'd to myself a few times before my fingers remembered how to close on the disc. Saturday was one of my best days of ultimate in a long time. I had really been looking forward to this tournament and played great all day long. In our third game of the day we were down 2-4 and called a timeout to collect our thoughts and try to stop the bleeding. We ended up taking half 7-4, then the game 13-6. It was a great timeout call, and for some reason I was keeping track of my personal W/L record (the points I played, and whether we won or lost the point). I was 9-0 that game, which I don't think I've ever done before. Ultimate has 7 people on each team, so it wasn't all me, but I don't think I made any mistakes and had a few D's to help our team through our early deficit.

Saturday night was fairly tame. Most of us were tired from running around in the scorching 65 degree sun all day. I took a nap, watched some Bond, watched the Phillies and Jamie Moyer's all-out performance. We got hooked on a Batman animated tv show for an hour, and were all pretty sluggish in the hotel room all evening. Somehow we made it to SNL time, and all fell asleep halfway through the show.

Sunday we had a first round bye, as the #2 seed in the A-pool of the 25-team tournament. We got to sleep in, which is always nice, and got to the fields around 9:30am. On Saturday, the weather was perfect--60-65 degrees and sunny. Sunday, however, the wind picked up and the temperature dropped. We got to watch Olympia and the UPS team (my alma mater) play in the first round, and the wind was wreaking havoc on both teams. The winner of that game was our next opponent, so getting to scout them out was a big advantage. I noticed that neither team was playing zone defense, which made no sense to me.

Olympia won the tight game and we played them in round 2. We set a nice zone against them and I got to play a lot of cup. They didn't get the disc past half-field for most of the game when they were going up wind, and we started to roll once our offense got accustomed to the wind, winning 11-6 at the hard cap. Our next game was against Resurrection, an older, wilier team, who called a lot more penalties than any other team we had faced--which I find takes a lot of fun out of the game, and is also much more present in higher-level ultimate. I took myself out most of the game, because I didn't enjoy playing in a hotly emotional game where lots of fouls are called. It felt like they had our number, but we fought back for a universe point, 7-7 at hard cap.

Surprisingly, one of our captains called out my name for our final point. We had a huge disadvantage, having to play defense and going into the wind. Odds were not in our favor, but we all vowed to try our best. I got the necessary D, stepping in front of a throw, then I raced deep. Dare tried to huck it to me into the wind, but the wind completely turned the disc over and it fell just out of my reach. We stepped up our defense and got another D, and worked the disc up the field. I made and cut and got the disc, then at stall 5 a pick was called, freezing the action on the field. When play reset, I wasn't confident enough to try and break the mark into the wind on a flick, so I turned back to dump the disc to Sean. As I turned back, my mark tried to deny the dump and Sean raced up the sideline. I was able to swivel back quicker than my defender and got the disc to Sean for the 8-7 victory! It was a blast to be part of the improbable win.

We played Bad Spirits in the finals. It was the Tacoma team's first finals appearance at Hanford, and we were playing the #1 seed. They were comprised of a few very good players from around the Pacific NW. Much like the semi-final game, we fell behind and the game was filled with penalty calls which just sap the fun out of the game for me. I played my share of points in the finals, and we ended up having another universe point at 8-8 for the championship. This time the odds were in our favor. We were defending, but we were going down wind and liked our chances. My number wasn't called this time, and Bad Spirits worked the disc brilliantly up wind for the score and the championship.

It was very odd not to be drinking at the end of a frisbee tournament. I am used to watching the finals and drinking a few beers at the end of a tournament, but this time I got to play in the finals. It was a fun experience, even though most of the 25 teams had already left the fields on their long drives home. We had some fun-spirited hecklers on the sideline from Suspicious Package, the WSU team, who heckled both teams evenly for all the penalty calls being made.

The drive home went quickly and I drove Josh and Stephanie back to Tacoma. Josh's new place has a hot tub in it, so we relaxed there for a bit and finished up another Bond movie. Josh has Rock Band 2 and will be getting Guitar Hero World Tour in the next few weeks, so I'm sure another trip down to Tacoma is in store. Overall, a great weekend, can't wait for next year's Hanford!

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Thursday, October 23, 2008

Live-Blogging the Numbnuts!

Anyone else doing the same?

I'm hoping for an all-in family pot the first hand.

And I'm shooting for an M of 500 by the break.

And I'm adding to the list of Over/Unders with a finish time of 10PM PST.

--6pm PST--
We've got 30 minutes until the mayhem and 77 horses have signed up. First place is leaving with a minimum of $2.46. Second is $1.50. Third place won't make their buy-in back at $1.08.

MHG O/U prop #2: First place prize money will be $275

Looking down the list of entrants, how about this for a fearsome foursome:


I have no idea who Maniac57 is, but those other three are dangerous. DANGEROUS!

It begins...

First hand:


First walk of the night for DDionysus, VinNay up to 61,000 chips... 8 minutes in.

New table with 4k chips, bleh.

Up to 28k chips! Huzzah!

Folded the hammer to Shaub's big raise... his two pair would have beat my two pair.

Sucked out on, then drop the hammer, back up to 25k!

JTo holds up! 45k! That picture didn't turn out too well, fuck pictures!

Schaubs can eat a dick, his 5h3h owns my TT and drome's AA with turn and river 3's.

21 minutes in and LJ is in the lead with 171,020 chips. Four players have bailed and shall be forever blacklisted on this blog:
96)riv3r maker

That is, unless their connections killed them, because I can relate to that suckery.

I'm getting shit for folding. FU, berators!

42k, time to pull away from the pack (at least the pack at 2k). Chip leader is over 300k.

Balls, back down to 2k, 7d6d no goot!

ScottMc at 552k chips, 19 minutes left on rebuy!

Closing in on 3500 rebuys...

At 16k, I'm done with rebuying and it is dinner time, I'll be back in a bit.

Back in the game! First hand I pop it all-in with 98o and take out a shorty. Oh damn, it isn't the rebuy still, my bad.

Looks like the punks bullying me into pushing every hand went out a while ago, serves them right. Bullying never pays. You play your game, I'll play my game, even if it is weak/passive. It is my dime, damnit!

Tournament stats:
ScottMc in the lead with 540k
1st place prize: $146.72
Places paid: 9
Players remaining: 44
Total number of rebuys: 4417
Prize pool: $458.50
Time remaining: This is going to last waaay past 10pm PST

Just got out of the hot tub, I'm not a good blogger, nor good poker player.

Just pushed with A8s and was ousted by Blazman with JTo, out in 31st. Not my best $5 ever spent, but I had a good time!


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Your Smile

I sit at a hexagonal table with five of my classmates,
Bored to tears as the lecture drones on.
Hands holding up my head,
But nothing helps my eyelids,
and I drift...

I yawn and wipe away a tear,
I lean back in my chair,
Stretching, hoping for energy,
from somewhere--anywhere.

I glance around the lifeless room,
The professor, happy in her own world.
The constant question-asker, asking questions.
And you, looking back at me.
You crack a smile,
and my smile magically appears.


Tuesday, October 21, 2008


You were my addiction,
The only way I slept,
In my dormitory room.
I kicked the habit
During that summer of love.
But here you are again,
In my sickness,
My time of need.
I gave you a sideways glance,
Then ripped off your wrapper,
In an uncontrolled fever of desire.

Holding the first cup up to my lips,
I remember back to my childhood,
Hating you.
You tasted terrible.
You still taste terrible.
And you still make my body convulse,
Writhing in agony,
After each shot down my throat.

But you do a damn good job.
Now I go to slee...


Monday, October 20, 2008


These guys are brilliant. Binary solos, spot-on computer-voice speak--this is gold!


Numb Bone, Yo!


Sunday, October 19, 2008


I was going to title this post "Down with the Sickness" but it turns out I titled a post that 13 months ago. I think I can duplicate title posts, because it looks like the date is also jotted down, but I like being unique.

I've been sick since last Wednesday, skipping out on my middle school observation last week. I didn't feel too terrible, but I had the muscle-aches and plenty of hacking up of green stuff to keep me at home. I spent most of this weekend indoors, too, which sucked because the weather was beautiful and I could have had my sixth "Last Weekend of Summer" motorcycle trip.

Saturday was a pretty fun day. I went to my friend Andrew's belated wedding reception (he had a private wedding but had this reception party for all his friends months later) and drank some wine to try and keep my sickness in check. From the reception, Tyler joined me for a quick round at the par-3 course and we tied. It was a great 60-degree afternoon, and even though I wasn't feeling great, it seemed like such a waste to stay inside, so we walked to the golf course from Tyler's. The golf was fine, but it ended up being a mile walk to the course, another mile of walking around the course, a mile back to his house, then another two mile walk back to my house--which was just too much.

I crashed and planned on making it an early night, but WoW was acting up and I had finished most of my schoolwork for the week, and there was a little post-reception party at the Montlake house... I made an appearance, not intending to stay long, but before I knew it 3am rolled around and the keg was dry. It was fun seeing lots of old faces back in town to celebrate Andrew's wedding. We got some poker, dice and Apples to Apples in, as well as watching Tropic Thunder. I haven't seen Ironman, and don't really have a good or bad impression of Robert Downey Jr., but he is pretty funny in Tropic Thunder. Or maybe it was the beer.

The muscle ache is gone after a nice sleep into the p.m., but the cold has now moved into my nose and I've used up half a box of tissues. At least I'm not the only one who is sick, it seems like most people I talk to are battling some kind of flu. I just hope it is over before next weekend and the Hanford Howl frisbee tournament. Last year we were the Brain Takers (a play on the Tacoma team's "Rainmakers" name). This year we are the Moonrakers, and I watched the old Bond movie Friday night--it has got to be one of the top Bond movies of all time. I'm going to dress up as Jaws, the most important part of the costume will be the mouth guard painted silver, but I need to figure out how to paint a mouth guard silver without poisoning myself to death.

Tram Scene:

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Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Matrix Poker

A few bloggers have been posting their thoughts on Full Tilt's new Matrix-style poker, so I check out the new SNGs and I must say--they definitely provide enough bang for their buck. I've done two cheapo $2 9-person Matrix SNGs, one a turbo and one non-turbo. The non-turbo made it to a break before finishing up, the turbo did not, if you are wondering how long these take.

-Lots of hands to play
-Skill > Luck
-Same players on each table

-4 tables is a bit much, especially when I'm sick
-minimal payout
-no big win

The new matrix style is cool because you play four SNG and the top 3 places each get money, then for each person you outlast you get a point, for each KO you get 2 points and each win 2 points for the overall top 3 spots (which pay the same as any of the single tournies). It is weird that you can win a SNG and still lose money in the matrix, but winning one of every four single table SNG's is about a push anyways, right?

So far I had a positive ROI in both matrices I played, and I only won one of the 8 SNGs.


Saturday, October 11, 2008

Motorcycle Video

Another nice weekend in Seattle. I think this is the fourth or fifth "last weekend of summer." It might be a little too cold to call this a summer weekend, but I know there won't be many of these weekends for motorcycle riding until next May. I was hoping to get some ultimate in at Greenlake this morning, but despite the good weather only three other people showed up to play. We tossed the disc for an hour, then I decided a motorcycle ride to Duvall to try and save the day.

I revisited the best BBQ restaurant I've ever been to for lunch, Teddy Bear's BBQ, and washed down the Papa Bear BBQ sandwich with a Moose Drool. My parents are back from their two-week road trip and my mom got me this great Moose Drool sweatshirt that I'll be wearing all winter, for many winters to come! Teddy's Papa Bear sandwich is something I might kill for. It is that good. Just thinking about this afternoon's pork sandwich makes my mouth water. The fact that big trophies line the wall reaffirm that they know what they are doing.

2008-10-11 - Duvall Motorcycle 007

2008-10-11 - Duvall Motorcycle 004

After eating, I made my way to the windy road Susie introduced me to a few months back. I had my camera with me, so I experimented with taking a video while I rode the motorcycle. After a few failed attempts, I eventually tightened the string to leave as little slack as possible around my neck so the view from the camera would be above the windshield of the motorcycle. My first few attempts had the gas cap as the lead role, but the final try worked out okay. I think the camera shut off after five minutes, which is alright because I got stuck behind a truck shortly after the video cuts out. The quality is a lot better on the original video, but YouTube cuts the file size from 450mb down to about 20mb.

View Larger Map

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Friday, October 10, 2008

Dark Dreams (part 1)

Friday, December 5, 2008
Seattle, WA

Rain continues to fall, as it has been doing all week. In downtown Seattle, Christmas decorations line the streets with an occasional token decoration for other religions. Lights everywhere, trees everywhere. It is hard to tell the difference between street lights and Christmas decorations during the day, but at night, in the rain, and from behind the visor of a motorcycle helmet, it is nearly impossible.

Jason waits patiently at a stoplight atop his black Kawasaki Ninja 650. He is wearing full protection gear, from his black helmet to his black boots, including his black waterproof synthetic jacket and pants. Jason turns his head to the left and watches a couple walk arm-in-arm under an umbrella, leaving Pacific Place. He wishes he could trade places with the man under the umbrella. Jason notices the cross light turn yellow and he reverts his attention back to the road. Two and a half blocks later, Jason turns left into an underground parking lot entrance. He punches #5325 on the keypad and the gate slowly rises.

The parking lot, usually full during the day, is nearly empty on a Friday night. Jason slowly winds his way down two levels to the bottom floor of the parking garage, where a black Ford Explorer and two men await. He backs the motorcycle into the driver's side parking space and he turns to the SUV. Jason cannot see well through his rain-covered visor and the tinted windows of the SUV, so he flips up his visor. Still no movement from the SUV. He wonders what sort of game his contact is playing. This isn't the first time Kevin and Jason have worked together, and he saw Kevin's large frame in the driver's seat when he rode in. Jason wonders if Kevin has fallen asleep, so he leans towards the vehicle and knocks on the window with the hard plastic on the back of his black armored gloves. Still nothing.

Jason does not like to play games. With the motor still running and the bike in neutral, Jason sets the kickstand and hops off the bike. He walks around the front of his bike towards the SUV when he notices through the front windshield that Kevin's torso is now slumped over the steering wheel. Jason stops in his tracks--not because of Kevin's slumped body, but the movement he sees in the backseat. He bolts for his bike and a second later the driver's side SUV back door swings open.

Jason straddles his Ninja, rocks forward off the kickstand while flicking the bike into first gear with his left foot and guns it. Once he is twenty feet away, he swings his head around to try and catch a glimpse of the other man. Fortunately for Jason, he turns just in time to see the other man wind up and throw a shiny object directly at him. He ducks and the object makes a metallic "klink" off the back of Jason's helmet. He does not look back a second time.

Halfway up the parking garage, he hears the Ford Explorer's motor start. Jason races his way to the top of the parking garage and hopes the garage door will open for his motorcycle. He can hear the screeching tires of the SUV a level below, and the garage door is not opening. Jason idles back and forth at the sensor, but the garage door is not lifting. Time is running out.

Jason spots the emergency exit door to his right. He spins his head around and can see the lights of the SUV rounding the turn to the top floor of the parking garage. Jason lines his bike up with the emergency exit door and guns it. He opens the throttle and pops a small wheelie, just enough for the front tire to line up with the push-bar on the emergency exit door. He slams into the door and it bursts open. Jason's front tire crashes to the ground and he sets both feet on the sidewalk to steady the bike. And then a crash.

The SUV smashes into the wall at the emergency exit. All Jason can see is the front grill of the Explorer through the open doorway. He flips down his visor and quickly makes his way to the I-5 express lanes heading north.


Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Politics (one time)

I'll preface this post with two statements:

1) I think this will be the last time I post about politics until the election is over.
2) If you plan on reading, please read the entire post (it eventually turns introspective and has a happy ending... not that kind of happy ending, Waffles).

I played goaltimate, a smaller version of ultimate frisbee, this afternoon for the first time in months. The goalty was fun, but on the way home, at the first stop light, I pulled into the middle lane and the car turning left had an Obama/Biden 08' bumper sticker. Living in Seattle, it wasn't the first, nor will it be the last, Obama/Biden 08' sticker I see. In fact, three of my neighbors have Obama/Biden signs out on their front lawns. I noticed the signs on my drive to the fields, but didn't think much of it. I remember thinking: I don't think I'll ever put a sign on my front lawn.

Sitting at the stop light I came to an epiphany.

It started by realizing I was glad the bumper sticker on the car next to me wasn't a McCain/Palin sticker. I thought this for a few reasons. The sight of an Obama/Biden sticker to me is a reassuring gesture by the owner of that vehicle--he or she *gets it*. Instantly, I wondered what my reaction would be if the sticker was for McCain/Palin. First, I would think it ballsy of the owner to place the republican sticker in Seattle. I'd fear for property damage if I were them. Second, and more importantly, I realized that they, and half the country, feels the exact opposite of the way I do.

Drive anywhere in Idaho outside of Boise, and if you sport a McCain/Palin sticker, you'll likely get a head nod, a truck horn, a discount on coffee--you name it. If you walk into a cafe with an Obama T-shirt on, I'd be interested to see what kind of service you get.

And then I thought... why does it have to be like this? I felt an enormous force of pity over the whole situation. The close-mindedness of so many people, including myself. I see the world very differently than the majority of Americans. I have friends of different race, gender, sexual orientation, geographic location, and yes, even political party. I'm not their friend because of any of these characteristics, I am their friend because of themselves as individuals.

Dr. Chako put up a "Move to Canada" video on his blog today, and it was one of the first things I saw when I sat down in front of my computer after driving home. The video actually hits pretty close to home. When I was living in Sacramento with Stacey during and after the 2004 election, we considered moving to Canada. We picketed on the capital steps calling for recounts in Ohio and Florida. I, along with Al Gore and plenty of other people, thought there was no way our countrymen would re-elected Bush Jr. And when it happened, I was shocked. To lose an election yet win the popular vote was a terrible thing. I felt like my vote did not matter unless I lived in a handful of few key swing states.

Picketing was a surreal experience, with a few hundred people. I was the most moderate of picketers, with a range from me to the guy leading the chants with the microphone. I was moderate because I was pretty sure we would accomplish nothing. Is Bush going to be toppled by the dude with the ratty hair and hoarse voice? I don't think so. It might be the most amazing thing in the world, but it just isn't gonna happen.

I'm not sure exactly why we didn't move to Canada, but I think it was a multitude of things. Family being in the U.S. was probably the biggest deterrent. Another deterrent was the hope that instead of abandoning the U.S., we can stay here and fix it. There seem to be many different Americas, depending on whose eyes you are looking through.

If you look through my eyes in high school, America was an amazing place. 17 years old with a car of my own. Freedom. Girls to chase and time to do it. Time to play tennis on the school team, joking around and hitting dead tennis balls out of the park. Keggers to find on the weekends, but only drinking a sip of beer.

Fast forward to 24. I am vehicle-less and standing in the rain at a bus stop waiting for my bus home from work. People whiz by in their cars, oblivious to me. I wish I am in a car, safe from the weather and home in 15 minutes instead of an hour. I realize then that in high school I was in the vast minority. Most kids at my high school did not drive to and from school--but the kids I associated with did, so I thought it was the norm.

If you look through the eyes of practically anyone else, you'll realize each individual is vastly different, and has their own agenda when voting. For some people, their vote is as shallow as not wanting gays to get full marriage benefits. Gays not being able to marry is more important than the economy to them. Others truly believe that McCain or Obama's plans for the Iraq War and the economy are the best options.

Me? My vote is close-mindedly narrowed down to one topic this year, and it is more important than the War or the economy to me. Our standing in the world community is the reason I am voting for my candidate this year. I don't like our role as gun-slinger. We are a very unappealing role model for other countries to look up to right now, and I want that image to change. I'm thinking long-term with my vote, and I realize that all superpowers die out, and the quickest way to die out is to spread yourself too thin. But if you've played Risk, you already know this.

I think a great thing about America is that we have the ability to treat each other as individuals without labels. There are many places in the world where two people just cannot be friends. Whether that is religion or any other dividing factor. I like the fact that Dr. Chako, his wife, and their kids, can come visit and have an amazing day up at my cabin--dealing with each other on a person-to-person basis instead of on one of the factors that might divide us.

Blogger gatherings are a great example of the one-to-one contact that I'm talking about. Sure, we have poker and blogging in common, but just look at all the differences. Cat fights occur here and there, which is easier to do through the internet than face-to-face, but I have yet to hear of a fight at one of the many blogger get-togethers. Everyone leaves with a smile on their face, or at least a smile on the inside. I'll never forget playing mixed games at MGM with a table full of bloggers until 5am. Every time a local would come to the table they would be happy to see us, and it wasn't because we were giving away money (well, besides me). They must have seen our motley crew and wondered how the hell we all knew each other. And in all honesty, we didn't know each other very well, but we knew we'd have a great time together, and we did.

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Monday, October 06, 2008

Yes, Definitely!

I shook up the ol' 8-ball and asked it some questions this afternoon. For some reason the answer kept coming up, "Yes, Definitely!"

Magic 8-ball, do the Seahawks really suck this bad?

Magic 8-ball, did I really only score 16 fantasy points this week with my all-Seahawk fantasy squad?

Magic 8-ball, have I already failed at my attempt at temperance?

Magic 8-ball, I'll still be alright though, right?

Magic 8-ball, was it windy this weekend?

Magic 8-ball, did my power go out?

Magic 8-ball, did I find the neighbor's huge table umbrella in our backyard due to the 50mph gusts?

Magic 8-ball, is the rain a big reason why I love Seattle so much?

Magic 8-ball, is the only reason I like rain because I come home from work/school and jump into sweatpants and play on the computer?

Magic 8-ball, am I going to win the donkament this week?


Thursday, October 02, 2008

Survivor, Surviving

The Vice Presidential debate is going on right now, but I'm glued to the On Demand commercial-free 2hr premier of Survivor from last week. What does this say about me and my patriotism? Meh. I'm more worried about the election than excited. I know which candidate I'm voting for, because the most important thing to me is US relations with the rest of the world. I could give a flying fuck whether our economy is in shambles if we continue waging war around the world painting a larger and larger target on our backs. Our society can't possibly survive with that attitude.

And yes, I'm the one watching a high definition television, typing on my laptop in the safety of a centrally-heated house. I'm weak, I'll admit it. Give me a month of free time and I'll likely get nothing productive done. I might gain a few levels in WoW, and that is about it. But when my back is against the wall--watch out. In a very convoluted way, I think I relate well to my country. We haven't really been challenged for a while now, and we've gotten to the point where the average American really hasn't changed their everyday routine even though we have been in a war for five years, are in the middle of an economic crisis, and our country is the rich kid most everyone despises.

Relate where we are now to where our country has been with our back against the wall, notice any difference? Remember any bombs? How close are we to having our backs against the wall again?