02
Nov
10

Sight for sore eyes

Being a Baylor fan isn’t easy.  I’ve only been one since my older brother enrolled in 2004, but in that short span, I’ve seen some heartbreaking football  seasons.  I can only imagine how much suffering alumni of 10 or 20+ have gone through.

Since I’ve attended Baylor, we have had several talented teams, but none won the necessary 6 games to become eligible for a post-season bowl.  To be honest, we were only talented enough to do it in 2 of those seasons, but in each of those 2, our starting quarterback suffered season-ending injuries (Shawn Bell and Robert Griffin, respectively)

Last weekend, Baylor became eligible for a bowl with a win over Kansas State.  The Bears improved their record to 6-2 and took first place in the Big 12 South division.  While it was a very encouraging win, it was also a win of relief because there was no guarantee we would be able to win any more games with 4 tough ones ahead against Texas, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, and Oklahoma.

This past weekend was the latest chapter in an amazing season.  Baylor traveled to Austin to face a Texas team that they had not beaten since 1997.  Baylor overcame a 9 point second half deficit to beat the Longhorns 30-22.  With that win, the Bears have not only remained ranked in the top 25 for 2 straight weeks, but have also made a believer out of this previously weary Baylor football fan.

I know we have 3 very tough games ahead of us and we may finish 7-5, but even if that is the case, I finally have faith that Baylor is a good football team and that head coach Art Briles and quarterback Robert Griffin have created an atmosphere of faith and of winning at Baylor and I believe that this season is only the start of a great college football turn-around.  Sic ‘Em

– JG

25
Oct
10

Risk vs. Reward

Since I’m a business student, I have been drilled with the concept of thinking in terms of risk and reward the past few years.  For every action, there is a certain level of risk and a certain level of reward.  The basic goal is to maximize your reward while minimizing your risk.  This is obviously easier said than done.

Being a senior graduating in December, I have SEVERAL decisions looming in the next couple of months.  One of the most prevalent is what I’m going to do for a living.  I never really thought the decision would get as complex as it seems its going to prove to be.  Often times, you don’t know if you’ve made the right decision until well after you’ve made it which is what makes the decision so pivotal.

When faced with these decisions, I often go back to my risk vs. reward formula.  Unfortunately, there is no clear cut winner in this one. Let me set the scene for you.

On the one hand, I have two positions awaiting me in my home town.  They would both pay well (nothing outlandish, but definitely enough to live fairly comfortably and be able to slowly pay off the good ole’ student loans), both are in an area I know very well, and I know people who work at both companies so getting broken into the environment would be good.  On the downside, I’m not crazy about going back home to work and there doesn’t seem to be entirely too much opportunity to move up the corporate ladder.  Both positions would fall under my category of “low-risk, moderate reward”

On the other hand, I have an opportunity to start a business with a friend.  We’ve done a good deal of research and I really believe that the business would be successful.  However, while we have done a great deal of work trying to forecast how the business will do, we won’t actually know until we get it underway.  In this scenario, I would make little money starting out, but great potential to increase my income as the company thrives.  I would get to work with one of my best friends, have a great deal of influence in the company and it would bring about much more self-satisfaction if it is successful.  The downside to this is obvious.  We start the business and are confronted with a couple of obstacles we didn’t foresee and the company fails.  If that happens, I will have likely missed out on the two other positions and be down a bit of money.  I categorize this option as “high risk-very high reward”. 

Now that you have an idea of my quandry, I ask for your thoughts and opinions? What would you do?

-JG

04
Oct
10

Quality > Quantity

Do you ever get the feeling that you’re over-immersed in facebook status updates, twitter posts, text messages, e-mails, etc? I know I do.

I was having a conversation with a couple friends earlier this week and were discussing an array of topics.  One of which was what time period(s) other than the present we would have liked to live in.  One person’s answer was to live in our grandparents’ generation and the reason was because they didn’t have to deal with all of the latest and greatest technology all of the time.

This brought about the topic of the social media today and how it affects our lives.  After giving it some thought, I realized that I would probably rather go without a lot of what we have today, because it often borders on sensory overload.  I enjoy facebook as much as the next person, but do I really need it? absolutely not.  I’m “friends” with about 400 people more than I am actually friends with.  I don’t have their phone numbers, have classes with them, or have any other connection with them outside of the facebook world…so why are we “friends”?

The reason I struggle with it the more I think about it is because those cyber-friends take up so much of my time that I could be spending on REAL friends.  I would much rather spend an hour getting coffee and having a conversation about something or even nothing with someone I truly care about than getting updates on what a dozen of my acquaintances have been doing in their lives.

I think people as a whole are slowly losing people skills and opportunities to have a handful of deep relationships in an attempt to have countless shallow ones.  It just makes me very curious and a little nervous to see where this road is leading us all.

That conversation and the process of writing this post has convicted me a little bit and as a result, I’m going to do my best to invest more of my time in my quality relationships instead of my quantity relationships and I would encourage you to do the same…you may like the result you get.

Until next time.

-JG

27
Sep
10

Waco Bucket List

I recently watched the movie the Bucket List and decided I wanted to to make my own.  It’s harder than you might think. As I struggled to put together a list of the things I MOST wanted to do in my life, one of my friends suggested I start small by doing a Waco bucket list.  Since I graduate in December, I figured this would be a good exercise to get the creative juices going.  I ended up joining forces with a couple of friends to get a list down and below is what we came up with.  Since there were three of us, there are some things on the list that one or two of us had done, but at least one of us had not.

The Waco Bucket List:

1. Go to a Baylor home game for each sport

2. Go tortilla-tossing

3. Explore each of the buildings on Baylor’s campus

4. Go kayaking/canoeing in the Baylor Marina

5. Go to Cameron Park and Cameron Park Zoo

6. Go to karaoke at Scruff’s and piano man at Treff’s

7. Run through the fountains at the BSB

8. Go to the Mayborn Museum

9. Go to at least one play put on by Baylor Theatre

10. Go to the Drive-In Theatre in Gatesville

That was the list we came up with.  I’m sure there are plenty of other great things to do, so please feel free to comment and give extra suggestions for things to be put on the Waco Bucket List!  Life Bucket List will be posted when I get around to finishing it up!

-JG

20
Sep
10

Morbidly Therapeutic

For as long as I can remember, I’ve felt that I would die at a relatively young age.  No matter how morbid or strange a gut feeling as this is, it doesn’t change the fact that I still feel this way.  Up until recently, I never really thought of “acting” upon this feeling, because it’s not something that I like to think about or can do much about.  It’s one of those things that if I’m right, I’m not going to say “I told you so”, because one, I’ll be dead, and two, that kind of sucks for me.  Anyway, as I was laying in bed late the other night struggling to fall asleep, I thought about  doing something that struck me as odd, but none-the-less, the idea popped into my head: “I should write a letter to the people closest to me so they will know how I truly feel about them in the unfortunate event that I am correct about the timeliness, or untimeliness of my demise”.  So I did.

I apologize for the strange topic of this post, but please keep reading, a point is coming soon.

As I wrote the letters, my mood became better strangely enough.  Although the purpose of each of those letters was very negative, the content brought me much joy.  As I wrote each individual letter, I realized that I was emptying my mind and filling pages upon pages with just about every good memory in my life. It was amazing how much I caught myself smiling and laughing re-living each pleasant memory.  I also cried occasionally – partly because I’ve had some very sad memories in my life, and partly because I put myself in the shoes of the letter’s recipient.

At the end of this very time-consuming exercise, I had a surprising feeling of happiness come over me. Initially, I thought it would be a very depressing and morbid experience, but I couldn’t have been more wrong.  Instead, I found that writing the letters meant expressing my love for loved ones and  re-living amazing memories in my life.

I hope my gut feeling is wrong, but if it isn’t, at least now I’m prepared. If it is, I’ll choose to view the other night as a morbid therapy session. I realize this may still seem like a very bizarre scenario for many of you, and that’s fine. However, I would still like to suggest that each and every one of you that reads this does a similar experiment. If you do, I’d like to ask that you let me know how your experience was. Hopefully, it will be more therapy, less morbidity, like mine was.

-JG

13
Sep
10

Where is the Love?

The past four years, something has bothered me about campus life: people tend to be rude to one another.  For whatever reason, it’s no longer the norm to smile, say hello, or even acknowledge people you pass on campus.  Instead, when people pass on the sidewalks, they look at their phone or watch or  simply avert their eyes from yours.  They actually go out of their way to ignore you.

Yes, I understand that we haven’t met, but I’m not a telemarketer or traveling salesman trying to steal some of your valuable time.  I’m a student just like you who believes in being friendly and acknowledging of others’ existence.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a encouraging hugs and life story-swapping at every encounter on campus.  All I’m saying is that there’s nothing wrong with being a bit more friendly with your peers.  You never know how bad of a day they’re having or how far a smile and a kind word can go…just something to think about.

-JG

07
Sep
10

Introduction Post

Hello all.  My name is Josh Graber and I am officially no longer a blog virgin.  I’ve followed many blogs through the years and think that they are a great new channel for people to connect, so hopefully that’s what you will find here.

This being an intro post, I’d just like to tell you a little about myself and what I’ll be blogging about in the posts to come.  I’m a senior at Baylor University studying marketing and will graduate in December.  I’m not exactly sure what’s next for me, but that’s part of the fun…right?  I’m a God-first, family-second person and hope to stay that way until the day I die.  Outside of those,  I have two main passions: sports and music.  Both have been and continue to be a huge part of my life.  I can’t imagine life without either of them.

That’s the basic overview for now.  As you may guess, many of my posts will revolve around the aforementioned topics: God, family, sports, and music.  I’m hoping to be able to connect with many of you in one or more of those areas.  That’s all for now, but stay tuned for a post soon.

-JG