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OTer of the week

OT'er of the week Captain Jack 2010

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#1 obsidianstorm13

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Posted 24 March 2010 - 07:43 AM

The OTer of the week is Captain Jack!

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Rules)
Here are the rules which should typically be appended to the new thread:

1. The current OTer of the Week chooses the next OTer of the week and starts a thread in their honor.
2. That person's week in the spotlight runs from Monday to Sunday, after which a new OTotW takes over.
3. To keep this interesting please choose someone with whom you typically disagree here on OT, and also someone you don't know well. We'd hate to see it get clubby.
4. Current OTotW should set about picking a successor within a few days in case the search for a new OTotW takes awhile. And also so that person can prepare and write a brief bio like this week's OTer of the week did below.
5. Have fun, and LEARN about each other.

I was born in the mid '70's and raised in California. I've lived in San Francisco, Bay Area for most of my life. Despite this, I never really felt like I fit in there. My mother was a teacher, and my father was in the Navy and then became part of the reserves later on. So I was pretty much raised "military style" because of that.

I am pretty much the "black sheep" in the family, just as my father was. They enjoy controlling and minipulating others which is something neither my dad or I put up with. Anyone they can't dominate over, they pretty much exile. When my cousin was born, I became the "bad kid". No matter what I did, you can bet I was going to be blamed for something. My cousin grew up being the "saint", while I was "once a good boy". I didn't spend much time with family because of this. They never came to any of my birthdays or holidays, and I was never invited to attend my cousin's birthdays or to any holiday parties they had (until much later just to make me look bad).

Growing up in the bay area was pretty nice, actually. There were a lot of kids to play with in my neighborhood, but they all soon moved away before my teens. High School was dreadful for me. I was by no means fat, or out of shape. I was just never one of the "popular" kids. So Beverly Hill 90210 it was not.

College opened the door to a fresh start. things seemed to look better for me, but in the end, turned out to be nothing more than financial struggle and endless work. I graduated with two degrees though. Then later got an AA at City College. Why? I don't know. I figured I had taken enough classes to qualify for one.

Although my grandparents have pretty much traveled the world (and got stuck in WWII), my parents and I did all of our travels in the States. That may sound boring, but there is quite a lot to see in the United States. Being that my dad was in the Navy, he did travel the world as well. But I wouldn't consider that to be part of leisure sight-seeing if you know what I mean. Vietnam and the Cuban Missile Crisis were not parties.

Throughout high school and most of college, I didn't care one bit about politics. I never even paid much attention to what my dad ever said about politics. But the older I got, the more I remember what he did say, and the more it all makes sense to me. My dad was deeply patriotic, knew politics like the back of his hand, right down to dates. He was a walking encyclopedia.

I never much cared about firearms either, until much later in my life as well. We had a few rifles, handguns, and even large knives floating around the house. None were in any kind of safe. Some were loaded. I remember my dad handing me a big rifle when I was young, and I was not impressed with it. I never bothered to touch his stuff either. I had my water guns, and that was plenty for me. Plus I knew he'd kick my butt if I so much as looked in the direction of where they were kept. He told me how important it was to have the right to bear arms and such, but I really didn't care then. Like politics, this changed years later.

What kept me "sane", I suppose was that I had a wild imagination when I was young, and it never really went away now that I'm an adult. I discovered Science Fiction when I saw re-runs of Star Trek and Space 1999. Battlestar Galactica, Knight Rider, cartoons like Starblazers, Robotech, Transformers, GI Joe, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, and later shows like Hercules: TLJ, Xena (seasons 1-3), Babylon 5, Star Trek: TNG, The Outer Limits, Twighlight Zone, and Stargate SG-1, fueled my interest in Sci-Fi/Fantasy even further. Reading Asimov's novels also played a huge part in my interest in the genre. That and the Honor Harrington novels. I wasn't into Star Wars until my teens for some reason. I also enjoy mystery "whodunnits". I can't say that I have a favorite author, or a favorite series. I like a lot of things, and I read a wide variety of things besides sci-fi/fantasy and mysteries. I like some horror novels (though most I've read were by Stephen King). political books, science, and even some history. I do so enjoy science, especially the theoretical stuff. Astronomy, geology, physics, you name it!

Other interests include cars. I love cars with a passion. Cars are both my joy and my pain. I also enjoy being with other people and companionship. Both I've been without longer than I'd like, frankly. I like a variety of music, except rap (unless it's from the '80's). Country music rulez! I love animals, I love computers, enjoy creating art, love martial arts, and prefer summer over winter. I've moved out of California to a completely different part of the country where I pretty much know no one (unfortunately), and am looking for a new job that I can be happy with.

-Captain Jack

#2 obsidianstorm13

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Posted 24 March 2010 - 07:47 AM

I'm going to start asking questions.
  What is your dream car?
What kind of job would make you the most happy?

and What's your favorite movie?  

:D

#3 SparkyCola

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Posted 24 March 2010 - 08:04 AM

Great choice Obsidian! Thanks Captain Jack, interesting Bio :) Now for the barrage of questions...

What kind of art do you like creating?
What were your degrees in? (and What's AA?)
How did you decide where to move to, when you made the big move?
Would you like to see more of the world?

Sparky

Edited by SparkyCola, 24 March 2010 - 08:05 AM.

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#4 BklnScott

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Posted 24 March 2010 - 08:16 AM

I didn't know you had moved.  What part of the country do you live in now?

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#5 Nonny

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Posted 24 March 2010 - 08:17 AM

Where in the US do you enjoy traveling the most?  
Do you roadtrip?
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#6 Captain Jack

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 05:52 AM

For some reason, I thought this wasn't going to start for another couple of days...sorry. :blush:

View Postobisidianstorm13, on Mar 24 2010, 05:47 AM, said:

What is your dream car?
What kind of job would make you the most happy?

and What's your favorite movie?

My dream car is the Ford Mustang.  I have always loved muscle cars, both old and new.  Either in black, silver, or blue.

What kind of job would make me most happy?  Heh, one that brings in a lot of money, lol.  :lol:  I'd love to have a job where I'm not a slave to it.  One that gives me some freedom and flexibility.  I used to have that job, and then the housing market went *poof*.  I would prefer enjoying what I do for a living, and not have to work 60-80 hours a week.  I'm actually looking for a career change now.  Haven't really found anything that really gets me excited for.  Heck, I haven't found anything, which is disconcerting right now.

I don't really have a favorite movie.  I like a lot of movies.  Though I like to watch the original Star Wars Trilogy, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Lord of the Rings more often than other movies in my personal DVD collection, I think.


View PostSparkyCola, on Mar 24 2010, 06:04 AM, said:

Great choice Obsidian! Thanks Captain Jack, interesting Bio :) Now for the barrage of questions...

What kind of art do you like creating?
What were your degrees in? (and What's AA?)
How did you decide where to move to, when you made the big move?
Would you like to see more of the world?

Barrage as many questions as you like, haha.

When it comes to art, I have a few favorite mediums.  In college I dicovered that I was rather good at doing charcoal drawings.  I also like doing things in pencils, and markers/ink pens.  Although I can, I don't care for painting all that much.  I have done a lot of things in the past.  Everything from line drawings, technical drawing, cartoon/comic characters, nature, animals, nature, fantasy, and whatever else that might get me in the mood.  I still have difficulty drawing people.    I can do faces/heads pretty well, but sadly, women still look kind of "manly" when I make the attempt.

An AA stands of "Associate of Arts".  I have an AA in Art, A BS in Geology, and a BA in Social Sciences.  I was actually a graphic design major until the department pretty much went into limbo and I had to pick something else.  Long story, but the short version is, I was tired of school, and looked for something I could finish in a year.  I kind of regret that now though.

I moved to the pacific northwest of the United States.  Compared to where I used to live, it's pretty rural.  I kind of like it, but it is a lot more lonely out here as I know no one other than casual co-worker chatter so far.  Where exactly, I'm not sure I want to say online.  I'm not too far from Seattle though.  There's plenty to do and see there.

I would to see a lot more of the world, definitely.  But given the current politcal and perhaps even social climates world-wide, I don't see it happening.  I do love road-trips though.  One day, I want to see Canada.  I think that would be as far as i would go for now.

View PostBklnScott, on Mar 24 2010, 06:16 AM, said:

I didn't know you had moved.  What part of the country do you live in now?

Pacific Northwest, not far from Seattle area.

View PostNonny, on Mar 24 2010, 06:17 AM, said:

Where in the US do you enjoy traveling the most?  
Do you roadtrip?

Anywhere.  I just like to experience different places.  When I lived in California, there was lots to see just driving down the coast.  My parents and I stopped at all the Missions one summer, which was pretty cool.  I love roadtrips.  I hate flying, so if I can drive it, I will. :)
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#7 BklnScott

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 06:50 AM

Wow, you go from liberal mecca to liberal mecca, huh?

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#8 SparkyCola

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 10:18 AM

Thanks Jack :D Would you ever show your art in the Art forum? I'd love to see it!

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I would to see a lot more of the world, definitely. But given the current politcal and perhaps even social climates world-wide, I don't see it happening. I do love road-trips though. One day, I want to see Canada. I think that would be as far as i would go for now.

Could you expand on this more? I could see political climates putting a person off going to Pakistan or Saudi Arabia say, but not most countries (especially those outside the middle east). I would have thought though that not wanting to fly would be a big obstacle - though there's still South America to explore.

Do you speak any languages beside English?
What are your favourite things to do in your spare time?

[to everyone]... Any chance we could go on a massive Ex Isle roadtrip through the US? :D

Sparky
Able to entertain a thought without taking it home to meet the parents

#9 Cardie

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 02:11 PM

Driving to South America would be quite the road trip! (It's 6900 miles from Seattle to Rio, for instance.)

What housing related job were you in before, CJ.

Was there any specific event that triggered your interest in politics and in firearms or did you just grow into them over time?

Cardie

Edited by Cardie, 25 March 2010 - 02:17 PM.

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#10 SparkyCola

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 02:44 PM

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Driving to South America would be quite the road trip! (It's 6900 miles from Seattle to Rio, for instance.)

That would be Amazing :cool: Take ages but imagine that! You're going through the US (you could go through the national parks region for added awesome), Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Brazil, and that's taking the most boring route :eek2:  

Just so that this post isn't 100% daydreaming... I'll put in a Sparky Classic:

How similar are you online compared with offline/real life?

Sparky

Edited by SparkyCola, 25 March 2010 - 02:45 PM.

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#11 Bad Wolf

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 09:34 PM

CJ what are your views on spirituality.

*you knew it was coming*
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#12 Captain Jack

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Posted 26 March 2010 - 01:35 AM

View PostBklnScott, on Mar 25 2010, 04:50 AM, said:

Wow, you go from liberal mecca to liberal mecca, huh?

LOL, almost.  As liberal as Seattle may be, it isn't as liberal as the Bay Area is.  But they're doing their best to be competitive. ;)  Fortunately (for me, anyway), I'm at least far enough from "liberal mecca" to where there are plenty of "middle of the road" folks, which I like and have an easier time relating to at least.

View PostSparkyCola, on Mar 25 2010, 08:18 AM, said:

Thanks Jack :D Would you ever show your art in the Art forum? I'd love to see it!

After moving over 800 miles, I'm still looking for all my socks, haha.  Plenty of stuff that I am still going through.  When I find some worth posting, sure.  I'll put it up.

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I would to see a lot more of the world, definitely. But given the current politcal and perhaps even social climates world-wide, I don't see it happening. I do love road-trips though. One day, I want to see Canada. I think that would be as far as i would go for now.

Could you expand on this more? I could see political climates putting a person off going to Pakistan or Saudi Arabia say, but not most countries (especially those outside the middle east). I would have thought though that not wanting to fly would be a big obstacle - though there's still South America to explore.

I've been told that there are still plenty of places out side of the middle east that consider Americans to be snobbish, or arrogant.  Some might be, but it isn't the case as a stereotype as not all Americans are like that.  Other reasons too, which may have some truths to them.  Some.  I think some American travelers who go to other countries kind of tick the natives off because they expect certain things from them.  Some forget that they're in a foreign country, and should try to understand and respect the culture(s) there as guests and be at their best behavior.  Those who don't try, tend to be the cause of some resentment from other people towards Americans.  Not to mention, not everyone likes what America is doing in regards to politics, and may take it out on tourists because of it.  I'm not sure of whether this is entirely true other than what I've heard from others.  I don't think Hugo Chavez would like me too much, or North Korea.  I wouldn't go to Mexico because of the problems they're facing right now, and the growing number of kidnapping Americans lately.

However, if I were to go someplace, I would love to go to Japan, Germany, UK, Greece, and Ireland.  Yeah, I'd fly as it would be the best and fastest way to get there.  Even if I don't like flying...

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Do you speak any languages beside English?

I can speak German and Russian.  I can't read or write them though.  I used to when I was very young.  My mom used to teach those languages when she taught High School.

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What are your favourite things to do in your spare time?

I have spare time?  It depends on my mood.  Sometimes I like to go out for a walk if the weather is nice, other times play some XBOX 360, do some drawing, write short stories (which I'm never satisfied with), and even hang out at the mall.  Yeah, I'm a mall rat.  Hope that wasn't too boring.  I intend to go back into martial arts though once I get more income coming, well, in. ;)

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[to everyone]... Any chance we could go on a massive Ex Isle roadtrip through the US? :D

Sparky

Only if we co-ordinate bathroom breaks, because I'm not stopping.  Just kidding.  :lol:

View PostCardie, on Mar 25 2010, 12:11 PM, said:

Driving to South America would be quite the road trip! (It's 6900 miles from Seattle to Rio, for instance.)

That would be one heck of a road trip.  More like an adventure of a lifetime.

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What housing related job were you in before, CJ.

Real Estate.  I got in at the tail-end of the "golden days", when all you had to do was put a yard sign on the lawn, and people would bid, bid, bid.  I miss those days.  It's a great profession, but too many people distrust realtors these days which isn't fair.  There are a lot of really good ones who won't mess you over just to get a sale.  I've worked very hard to do the job, and invested a lot of money into it as well.  So I really hate the idea of giving it up.  I love the freedom it gives me, but I'm also sick of the long dry-spells of no sales.

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Was there any specific event that triggered your interest in politics and in firearms or did you just grow into them over time?

Cardie

Heh, there was a time when I really liked Bill Clinton and made fun of George H. W. Bush.  And George "Dubb'ya" Bush drove me up the wall and down again.  Oh, and Bob Dole.  Man, I loved poking fun at Bob Dole.  I even voted for Al Gore.

I got pulled into politics starting with when Bubba Clinton was impeached.  But what really pulled me in all the way was the 2000 election and the whole "chad" ordeal.  Who really won the election?  Although that is water long since under the bridge now, back then, it made me realize that we should all be paying close attention to what's going on in our government and voting process.  Events like 9/11 and the two wars we have going on have since kept me keeping a close eye on politics.

I always seem to get accused of being a Republican here, or as one who hates Democrats, but that really isn't the case.  I was no fan of W when he was in office, and I am not much of a fan of Obama either.  I don't allow party lines to influence me.  There are moderate Democrats that are actually better than moderate Republicans, and vise-versa.  I look at the person's record first and foremost.  What has that person done as a politician, regardless of party. That say's a lot about that person.  What he/she promises means very little.  Compare what he/she claims to what he/she has actially done and stands for.  I also look at what people that candidate surrounds him/herself with.  That also says a lot about that person.  I also look at body language, facial expressions, and how he/she answers questions.  Party, race, color, gender matters nothing to me.  What that person has done and will do does.  I do find myself on the conservative side though because I do not believe in big government.  You know the the expression, "you give them a finger, they'll take your whole arm".  That's what big governments do.  You give them a bit more power, and they will take it as far as they can.  Usually too far, and too expensive.  Texas is a great example of how to run a nation.  They're not perfect, but their state system is a lot better IMHO than what we have now, and what we have had since 2000.

When I was in college, one of my jobs was a bank teller.  We were robbed three times when I was there, and two were at gun point.  Four guys in masks walked in, each with a semi-automatic rifle.  They were yelling at us, pointing their guns right at us, and were in our faces so fast, it was frightening.  We did what we were told to the letter, but we all thought we were going to die anyway.  It's easily one of the most dreadful feelings one can have.  All kinds of thoughts just come rushing through your head.   We were powerless, and at the full mercy of those robbers.  They were the ones who decided whether we live or die.  I prayed that no one messed up to make any of them angry enough to shoot, and fortunately, no one did.  Those guys meant business.  They got in and out quick, but it felt like forever.  And they got more than just what was at the teller line.  We were able to hit the silent alarm as they walked in, and the police showed up in just under eight minutes.  The four guys were out in under five.

Some time later, a man walked in, pointed a handgun at one of the other tellers demanding money.  The teller actually got angry, and she started throwing sash at him, then threw her change and then the entire money till at him, yelling "You want my money?!  Take it then, you ***********!"  I guess this baffled him enough to where he put his pistol back in his pocket and walked out without taking a cent.  Pretty intense when it happened because we were afraid of how the man would have reacted to her outburst and cash tossing.

About a year later I had a guy pull a gun on me on the road.  Traffic was moving slow for some reason, and I was moving at the same pace as everyone else.  Last time I checked, we can't move faster than the car in front of us without hitting them.  Some guy behind me is on my tail, honking and weaving.  Traffic is so bunched up, I could not change lanes to let him get in front of me.  We got to a stop light, and he drove on the wrong side of the road wich was clear, and pulled up next to me.  Rolled down his window, pulled out his gun, and was screaming at me for driving like a "retard".  That I was going to slow.  I told him I can't go faster than the cars in front of me, and he just went wild.  He told me he better not see me again, threw his gun down on the passenger side floor, and sped away making a left turn when the light turned green.  I kept calm just as I had been able to before.  But that same dreadful feeling came back.

Some time after that, I was living at a house where instead of paying rent, I took care of the place while the home owners were away.  The husband was a business man who traveled to Taiwan often as well as to various parts of the US.  His wife liked to go with him, and their kids who are my age did not want to watch over the house.  So it was a good deal for me at least.  It was a cool single-level house, in a very nice neighborhood.  Loved it there.  One night, at around 4 am, I woke up due to a strange noise.  I'm a deep sleeper, but when things are out of normal, I wake right up.  I woke up, opened my eyes just a little bit, and what I saw scared the life out of me.  There's a leg halfway inside my bedroom window.  Some guy is trying to get in.  I wanted to yell "get out!", but found that my voice had decided to not work for me then.  A million things were going through my mind as that guy was struggling to fit though the window.  I quietly reached for my bat, and when I had a firm grip on it, I sprang out from bed and just gave it my all at his leg and part of his butt.  I don't know who was more scared then, me or him?  He fell out, and ran off into the night.  I called the police, and they did not show up.  I called again, and the dispatcher told me they were going to get there when they have a chance.  They never did come.  I got to thinking, what if I called for help?  And they didn't come?  I could be dead?  What if the guy had a gun?  What if he got in despite what I did?  This worried me a lot.

About a couple months later, again, sometime around 3 am, I woke up from hearing the front door being man-handled hard.  I got up to look down the hall, and I could hear the door shaking.  Then it stopped.  I remember standing in the dark listening for sounds.  THen I heard someone trying to pry one of the windows open.  Then again, silence.  Then another window, and again, silence.  I call 911 again.  As I'm on the line, the back door starts to rattle.  Whoever was out there was clearly looking for a way in.  I'm wigging out because the dispatcher is asking me things like "did he come in a car?  If so, can you see what kind of car it is?  Is he alone? Can you see and tell me what he looks like? How tall is he?", and so on and so forth.  Meanwhile, he makes his rounds again.  Then my cell phone dies and I lose connection with the dispatcher.  She had gotten my address and other info I could giive (and I didn't bother to look to see what car he may have come in or get a good look at him as it was dark).  Even seconds felt like forever.  I've got nothing for protection.  Again, I was at the mercy of another person.  Not knowing what was going to happen, I decided if I was going to go out, at least I'd put up a fight.  That's just how I felt then.  I ran barefooted to the back door, switched on the light, and had my bat again in hand.  I guess the light must have spooked him.  That or be yelling at him to get out with a whole lot of profanity.  Again, the police never showed up.  And again, I got to thinking, what if he got in, and he was armed with even just a knife?  What if I lost the fight?  What if I had co-operated fully, and he decided to off me anyway?  This really bothered me, as for most of my life, I never had to really think about this sort of stuff.

I'm not exactly sure how much later, but I ended up chatting with Shalamar about things.  The subject came up, and she told me her own personal experiences, and how her gun save her life and a friends on more than one occasion.  She had a permit to carry her piece, and frankly, I thought that was a bit much.  But then again, if she hadn't had it with her, she and her friend would probably have been hurt real bad by some thug who wantedt o rob them as they were walking down a street.  He was extremely aggressive, but once she displayed her weapon, he turned scared real fast, and she gained control of the situation without even firing a shot.  If she had to, she would have though.  She was one of the first people I had "met" that was open about discussing firearms, self protection, and about how to deal with tough situations.  I hadn't considered owning a gun.  What would I do with one?  But she made sense.  I asked questions, and she answered every one of them.  She was by no means a "gun nut".  Even through chat, she was able to convey that she had full self control over owning and using a gun.  She was not the "trigger happy" gun owner that I have heard anti-gun people claim that all gun owners are.  The more we talked, the more I got to thinking about it.  I reflected a lot on my own experiences in being at the wrong end of the barrel.  I decided that I shouldn't be afraid of weapons.  Instead, I should at least understand them fully for myself.  Shalamar had a lot of wisdom to share.

Along the way, I found gun owners to talk to.  I even went to gun stores to talk to them as well.  I spent a lot of free time learning about weapons, and talked to people, including some law enforcement officers and an army ranger that I worked with then about guns for home/self defense.  They told me how to set up a layered defense, looking for dedendable areas, room clearing, and so forth.  I also learned that no officer is required to go into your house to save you.  More likely, they will wait it out outside.  This usually makes the home owner/resident the hostage.  I also found out that help will usually not arrive until after the crime has been committed.  This happened when I worked at the bank.  And in terms of where I used to live, sometimes help just doesn't come at all.

Before even purchasing a gun, I learned the rules of gun ownership and handling.  And 99.999% of what you see from Hollywood, is completely wrong.  I ended up taking the require coarse for a permit to own a firearm, and soon after purchased my first handgun.  Man, there was a lot of paperwork.  I didn't buy bullets for it for some time.  Looking back, that was kinda dumb, but oh well.  I made a friend who showed me how to take it apart and care for the thing.  Over time, I became more and more comfortable with it.  That is not to be mistaken for being careless.  I mean practicing it at the range turned for feeling weird to actually enjoying it.  It also kind of improved my vision as well.  Granted, it is a huge responsibility, and it's not for everyone.  But to me, it's worth it.  If I need it and can get to it, then great.  If I need and can't get to it, then I'll just have to pray I'll be alright in the end.  Most of all, I'd rather own one and never have to use it, than not have one and need one to save my life.

After my dad passed away, I moved back in with my mom to help her out.  One night, there were gunshots that were so loud, I thought it was from inside the house.  I was so entangled in the bedsheets that I could not reach my piece that was in a drawer by my bed.  If there was a person in the house, I was at their mercy then.  The shots were from somewhere else close by.  But I have since learned from that experience.  And where I live now, there are a lot of meth-heads floating around.  I live in a great neighborhood.  And yet, a nearby store was robbed, not for money, but for OxyContin to make meth.  So, crazy stuff can happen anywhere, no matter how safe of a neighborhood it is.  What's real scary is those that use that drug usually become extremely violent and almost super-human when in rage.

Do I think everyone should guns?  No way.  But I do think that we have the right to protect ourselves any way we wish.  Whether it be guns, knives, bats, tasers, security systems, etc.  I think it should be a choice for an individual to decide, not a government or whatever.  Some are simply not comfortable with them, and I respect that.  I'm not comfortable riding motorcycles, so that's cool.  And criminals will always find a way to get weapons.  Either via Mexico, or from over-seas.  They'll get them.  Banning guns only denies law-abiding citizens from getting them, which defeats the purpose.  The US is a vast, wide-open area.  Even today there are drug bandits from Mexico hiding in our deserts.  No one can keep track of them very well other than where they have been.  Where I live, it is very rural.  It isn't barbaric in any way to protect yourself if you can.  Frankly, I don't want to hurt anyone.  I don't even like the idea of hunting.  To me, every creature with a spine has a soul.  Dear, bears, rabbits, dogs, cats, etc.  I can't tell you how long I mourned when my cat had to be put down.  We held him as he put his little paw on my hand when the vet put him to sleep.  He looked at us and his eyes gave the expression that he knew it was the end of the line for him.  He had cancer.  We had him for 25 years.  Wow, this got to be rather lengthy, and I could go on too.  But I don't want to bore anyone...

View PostSparkyCola, on Mar 25 2010, 12:44 PM, said:

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Driving to South America would be quite the road trip! (It's 6900 miles from Seattle to Rio, for instance.)

That would be Amazing :cool: Take ages but imagine that! You're going through the US (you could go through the national parks region for added awesome), Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Brazil, and that's taking the most boring route :eek2:  

I have to agree, it would be amazing.

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Just so that this post isn't 100% daydreaming... I'll put in a Sparky Classic:

How similar are you online compared with offline/real life?

Sparky

I don't know, actually.  I think I find it easier "talking" to people online, but have a harder time making myself clear.  In real life, I can be pretty sarcastic and love to joke around.  But online, it is hard I suppose for people to tell the difference and I get in trouble because people think I'm serious when I'm not.  During SDCC meets, I'd say I've been pretty quiet in the crowd, but once I get more comfortable and I get to know people better, I loosten up.  Sadly, I don't think I got quite that far with the exception of G and White Tiger.  But White Tiger is a real approachable kind of guy, even if he can turn me into a human pretzel and kick my butt all over San Diego without breaking a sweat, lol.  He's really cool.  But, yeah, in real life, I'm not very political at all with other people or with friends usually.  I'm easy to hang out with and a whole lot less combative than, say, on OT.  I'm not big on pretending to be someone I'm not online.  Some people like that though, as I've learned the hard way from playing XBOX Live by getting punked by some 12 year old thinking he is a bad-arse.


View PostBad Wolf, on Mar 25 2010, 07:34 PM, said:

CJ what are your views on spirituality.

*you knew it was coming*

This is a huge thing for me.  I can't possibly answer it in couple paragraphs as I have a lot to say about spirituality and religion.  The question is so broad, I could write an entire book on it, probably.  Okay, maybe I could write a few pages worth on this thread.  It would make it easier though, if you could be more specific, perhaps?  If not, I'll do my best to anwer it as it is as best I can.  But you'll be doing a lot of readin', just so you know.  :lol:  Or I could just lie and say I don't believe in it, when we die, that's it, the end.  But I wouldn't do that to you. :D
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#13 Bad Wolf

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Posted 26 March 2010 - 03:09 PM

K:  Have you ever been a member of a particular denomination?  Are you currently?  Why or why not?

Do you distinguish being spiritual from being religious?  How so?

Do you believe that good and evil exist in and of themselves independent from the actions of people?

Do you believe people have souls?

Do you believe people are born good or evil?

Just remember YOU'RE the one who asked me to get specific...
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#14 Captain Jack

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Posted 29 March 2010 - 12:54 AM

View PostBad Wolf, on Mar 26 2010, 01:09 PM, said:

K:  Have you ever been a member of a particular denomination?  Are you currently?  Why or why not?

Officially, I am Greek Orthodox.  Currently, I am, and I am not.  I think my roots will always remain in Orthodox, but I when it comes to going to church, I am a lot more open to other denominations with the exception of the Catholic Church.  Nothing personal, it's just not my cup of tea.  Part of my family is greek, so they're greek orthodox, and so am I by default.  The Pope means nothing to us, and Orthodox Churches do not believe in having a one figure-head calling all the shots, which I like as well.  There are other little differences that are appealing as well.

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Do you distinguish being spiritual from being religious?  How so?

The word 'spiritual' is a Mankind term. The Greek word is 'pneumatikos.' In the Bible this word relates to our walk with the Lord, that is, in learning to live
our lives under the influence of the Holy Spirit. Spiritual believers are those who have learned the great value of living by the Spirit.  A personal relationship with God/Divine Spirit.

The term 'religious' is from the Greek word 'deisidaimonia.' This word means to be superstitious. It also speaks of reverence for God, but not necessarily in
regard to which god is involved. Being religious simply means you are a follower of a religion.  I believe I am much more than that.

So, a person can be religious without being spiritual. Hindus are religious. Muslims are religious. And so on.  Being religious simply means you are a follower of a religion. But being spiritual really means you are walking with the true God of the Bible.  I feel that I am more spiritual than religious.


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Do you believe that good and evil exist in and of themselves independent from the actions of people?

Yes, I do believe that good and evil exist, and they are both among us all the time.  Evil tempts us to do their bidding, while good tries to remind us that we are better than this.  But, it seems that doing evil is easier than doing good, which gets a lot of people in trouble.  Both good and evil know we are im-perfect beings with many flaws.  One of them is will-power, or the lack of it.  People are always tempted with physical things.  The Devil makes use of idol hands.  Good tries to keep people from falling down, while evil tries to pull people into their club of destruction.  Best we can do is learn from our mistakes and use it to better protect ourselves by making better choices down the road.  In order to grow and evolve, we need to experience both good and evil.  Otherwise, we would not know the difference and never learn anything or evolve.  That's why man is higher than angels.  God, Jesus, and man experience good and evil.

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Do you believe people have souls?

Without a doubt I do believe people have souls.  Yes, our bodies are essentially organic machines, but there is more to life than just that. To have desires, needs, feelings, emotions, and so forth show that we are more than just eating and polluting machines.  We are beings of energy and light, and this is only a lower plane of existance for us.  What we do here, decides where we go next in the next plane.  And I also believe that many creatures have souls.  Dogs, cats, horses, elephants, etc.  Any creature able to make choices, think, care for their young, capable of some level of understanding must have a soul.  Not as evolved as a human soul, perhaps, but a soul of some kind none the less.  Life is evolution itself.  There is still a hierarchy even in this.  This is partly what I believe personally.

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Do you believe people are born good or evil?

I believve we are born fairly neutral.  Almost a clean slate.  As children grow, they will tend to chose which path to follow.  And their choices will be based on how they are raised.  However, some or even many may have their own tendencies as well, regardless of how they are raised.  For some reason, some people tend to like being sadistic, cruel, and even destructive.  Others, not so much, or not at all.  It's a lot easier to spoil or "ruin" a child than it is to raise them as fine people.  Evil has always been this way, no matter what age a person is.  It is far more tempting to do evil than good, simply because being good takes more effort, more sacrifice, more self control, and more thought.  All one has to do is go on the internet.  More people seem to be willing to tell others to f-off than give a compliment.

I think being a parent is a huge responsibility that is not to be taken lightly.  Don't spoil your kids, teach them to make choices, teach them right and wrong, the value of life, that it is not good to kill anything, to treat others as how you would want to be treated, to be kind to others, be merciful and forgiving but also not be everyone's door mat, to think for yourself, not be judgemental, stand up for themselves, always ask questions, and always look for the truth.

Me and God have a rough relationship.  I have met so many people praise God for giving them a great career, a husband/wife/family, good fortune, and so forth.  When I look at my own life, all I can see is struggle.  Sometimes I feel like God left me off of His "to do" list.  This past weekend has really gotten me down in the dumps.  I know I shouldn't say that, but ya know, when one's faith is shot down, it hurts.  How is it that a person I know who has less education than I do making three times more money, and getting promotions, while I'm still in a rut?  Why do I have to have certain physical disabilities that have to haunt me every day of my life while others are in perfect shape?  There are a million questions about who many things are wrong with the world that will never be answered in life.  But that doesn't mean He doesn't exist.  Simply, the universe is far more complex and advanced than we could ever possibly comprehend until after we pass on to the next plane.

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Just remember YOU'RE the one who asked me to get specific...

I tried making it as short and precise as possible.  If I didn't answer well enough, or if there are any more questions, please feel free to ask away.

Edited because I missed a question.  My bad. :blush:

Edited by Captain Jack, 29 March 2010 - 01:01 AM.

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#15 SparkyCola

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Posted 29 March 2010 - 11:02 AM

Thank you so much for the thoughtful answers Jack :) It's been a pleasure reading your responses.

Do you have Greek heritage?

You said earlier that you spoke German and Russian - when/how/why did you learn them?

Thanks again! :D

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#16 Bad Wolf

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Posted 29 March 2010 - 06:49 PM

Wow Jack!  Thanks for those answers!  :D
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#17 Captain Jack

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Posted 06 April 2010 - 01:58 AM

View PostSparkyCola, on Mar 29 2010, 09:02 AM, said:

Thank you so much for the thoughtful answers Jack :) It's been a pleasure reading your responses.

Thank you. :)

Quote

Do you have Greek heritage?

Yes, but I'm not all that big on it.  It's on my mother's side of the family.  We once in a while have greek food, but otherwise, my mom and I are pretty mellow about it.  I may have some Greek blood in me, but my family have been US citizens for generations now.  I wouldn't mind visiting Greece, but I don't have a burning desire to do so.

Quote

You said earlier that you spoke German and Russian - when/how/why did you learn them?

Both my mom and my grandfather (her father) were into learning different languages.  My mom learned those two well enough to teach them at high school level many years ago.  Some of it was passed down to me when I was a wee-lad.

Quote

Thanks again! :D

Sparky

Thank you, again.  :)

View PostBad Wolf, on Mar 29 2010, 04:49 PM, said:

Wow Jack!  Thanks for those answers!  :D

I hope they were satisfactory.

Last call for any more questions before I close the book on myself here and find a new "OT'er of the week."  I had a whole lot of fun doing this, but I must admit, I was kind of hoping for a bigger turn out of people asking questions.  I don't want to sound ungrateful, by any means.  It was a blast.  I guess some of us have funny expectations of some things.  Well, I do anyway.  :lol:
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#18 obsidianstorm13

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Posted 06 April 2010 - 03:23 AM

It's ok.  I'm glad you had fun answering questions.

#19 SparkyCola

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Posted 06 April 2010 - 10:12 AM

Quote

I had a whole lot of fun doing this, but I must admit, I was kind of hoping for a bigger turn out of people asking questions. I don't want to sound ungrateful, by any means. It was a blast. I guess some of us have funny expectations of some things. Well, I do anyway.

I felt that way on my week too, so I know what you mean. The threads are still a great idea though :D

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