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Listening to chatter around the office and hearing “Neocon” repeated more than 20 times in a five minute span does more than annoy me, it proves to me that people take what they hear on the news and repeat it like parrots.

Me, being a straight shooting moderate conservative (who doesn’t necessarily share the same views of the entire party), has a responsibility to point a few things out.

  1. Neoconservatism has nothing to do with military aggression – This misconception leads people to believe that the first Bush’s pulling out of Iraq during the Gulf War was a bad idea. That is completely false. Bush’s policy of not pursuing the war and driving into Baghdad had more to do with trying to keep the stable nature in a trying climate. There was, in my mind, a moral obligation to stay as we had promised the Kurds protection and in the end they were rounded up and killed because of our reneging.
  2. Being conservative does not equate to neoconservatism – People can be conservative without being neoconservative, they are not the same. Please stop grouping them together.

Sorry for the rant, I just hear these things at work and my eyes roll back in my head because my brain cannot take it.

For those who we have yet to tell, Jess and I are engaged to be married!

So, I’m sure everyone wants the scoop, how it happened, when we’re getting married, and how little sleep I’ve achieved. To start, I’ll explain how the engagement went.

Jess and I have always enjoyed heading to Coupland Dancehall to dance and enjoy good music. I contacted Kyle Park, an old friend of Jess’s who happens to be a country musician, asking when he would be at Coupland and whether or not he would be willing to play his ‘Yours and Mine’ song. Of course, Kyle, being the nice guy that he is, happily agreed. Having a date that Kyle was going to play, I was able to organize Jess’s and my parents to surprise her at the dancehall.

Of course, loving to dance, Jess agreed to go to Coupland and we headed to Austin on Friday, February 22nd. The ring was hidden away in the depths of my suitcase the whole time, my biggest worry was dropping the ring or flat out losing it. The evening of the dance rolled around and Jess and I made the thirty minute drive. To our surprise, the dancehall was packed (Kyle is getting popular!) and walking in we realized there were very few spots to sit.

We danced a few times during Kyle’s first set and were having a great evening. Kyle came back out for his second set and I became anxious, knowing that the song would be played in the next few minutes. Kyle had informed me before the show that he would play a George Strait composition before he played our song and when it came on I text messaged my mother and told her to get everyone ready.

Jess and I started dancing to ‘Yours and Mine’ and I eventually leaned in and asked her to marry me. She stepped back, looked at me confusedly, and then I showed her the ring, she just about lost it. At first I’m not sure she thought the whole thing was real and for both of us the next few minutes were a blur. I pointed out our families standing to the side and they gave us all hugs.

YES!

As far as when we are getting married, we do not know the exact date just yet but have been exploring options in late July and mid to early August. Neither of us have really slept thanks to excitement and adrenaline.

Thank you all for the congratulations and well wishing! We’ll be sure and let everyone know the plans and dates as we get them. You can keep up with photos by visiting this link: http://www.flickr.com/gp/23982214@N00/szzn27

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Tomorrow Jess and I leave for Austin. Originally, I was all set to go to SXSW but due to some unknowns at work the trip was put on hold.

Between that time and now, Jess and I became engaged, and the trip is now a SXSW/wedding planning endeavor. I will still have time to meet folks and share a meal. If you’re going to be in town, e-mail me at ssegr&#97ves@gmail.com.

See you there!