Tuesday, December 27, 2005

One of my friends didn't take a computer back to school with him

I mean, he had a computer, he just didn't take it with him. He says he gained so much free time, because he doesn't waste time mucking around on it, and he loves it. Granted, he's more hardcore than I, but it's an interesting idea. The problem is my damn major, and if I didn't have a computer, I'd have to be in the cluster a lot more. That's not too good. Point is, it's a neat idea.

In other news, I had a great Christmas, and I'm sure you all did too- if you didn't, and I ask you "how was your Christmas?" as I'm sure I'll do when I get back- I'm not very creative- I expect you to tell me that it wasn't too good. Really, I care, I'm not just making small talk. And if I am just making small talk, then slap me or something, because small talk is for suckas.

What if I made better small talk? What if, instead of "Hey, how's it going?" it was "Hey. If you couldn't be your current religion (or lack thereof), what would you be?" or "Hey, what's your favorite city that you've ever visited?" or "Hey. Would you rather know that you screwed up something huge in your life and you could have done better, or that you were just mucked in the first place?" or "Hey, who's the second-last person that you've talked to?" or "Hey. Arms or kicker?"

It's another neat idea. Might throw some people off. Might make life a bit more interesting. Might make me bizarre and intolerable. If so, I'll quit.

Friday, December 23, 2005

Ski trip status: Booked, confirmed, ready to go!

It's taking a lot of effort not to put a lot of exclamation marks in this post.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

What am I trying to do here?

After reading previous post a few times, it strikes me that it's a little arrogant, and entirely unnecessary. A reality kick from Beej happened too- is it true that every time he posts a comment, I post again, recanting my previous post? Whatever, he's right.

I don't have an axe to grind with anyone, there's nobody with whom I'm trying to settle the score, and so why not just leave well enough alone? I still say honesty is nice, but it's not like we're in an honesty crisis right now. No use trying to stir up trouble when no such trouble exists.

On that note, I'm home from finals, finals were great, it's break, it's Christmas, and I'm going skiing in a couple weeks! So there are no problems anywhere! Exult! Jubilate!

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Here is exactly what I think of you:

There, the title got your attention. I'll diverge to say that the band Aveo (A Seattle band that opened for Death Cab and Ben Kweller... I have their cd "Battery", I like it a lot... you've probably never heard of them... God, I'm a pretentious indie fuck) has a song called "3:33 AM/The Insomnia Waltz". It's now two hours after 3:33 AM. Irrelevant.

You know what? I can't say exactly what I think of you. I realized this tonight at dinner; well, at post-dinner... at Eat'n'Park midnight breakfast buffet. Four people know what brought this on; the specific case is not that big a deal. The point is: It is very much a faux pas in our society to say exactly what you think of someone.

Say there's someone you don't like. And you don't have a "legitimate" reason for not liking him. ("legitimate" reasons include: he actually committed a crime against you. That's about it.) You can't say bad stuff about him when he's around- I mean, he'll hear you. What if you're not around him? Nope, can't say anything bad then, because then you're a sneaky sly backstabber who acts nice around someone and says bad stuff behind his back. What can you do? You can imply stuff; you can sugarcoat it enough so that the people you're talking to know what you're talking about, but you didn't say it.

Which has the exact same effect as you just saying it! So why can't you do that?!

Joe once said that he wanted to post on his blog or something: send me an email, and I will tell you exactly what I think about you. My immediate reaction: "great idea!" But then he said, "well, you can never do that unless you're graduating." I thought for a minute and realized-- that's true. Why? Think about it- those emails you would write would become a swift zephyr through your social house of cards. That's obviously true, right? But why does it instictively seem like it would be so destructive?

Now, in an ideal world, all of your friends are people you admire entirely, because that's how the best friendships are. If you each respect the other person a lot, you have the same status, and yet you both think each other's at the higher status- as a result, you always want to be around that person. Petty squabbles get discarded, because your stake in each minor bicker isn't important enough to risk ruining your relationship with this Person of Higher Status.

Maybe the problem is that life ropes you into friendships with people you don't admire. Through classes, jobs, SnS/other activities, you have to spend a lot of time with people you don't like. Minor annoyances become major grudges, and soon you realize you want to say a bunch of stuff about people that you just can't say. Now would it be better to get that all out in the open? I don't know! If someone does something that bothers you, is it worth it to say it? In an ideal world, would it be worth it to say it? On the one hand, it'd be a lot more complaining. On the other... I mean, honesty is good, and having all these grudges pent up inside is undoubtedly bad.

Now, if you were Jesus or something, you could just decide not to have these grudges, and then you wouldn't, and then you would love everyone equally. But A, you're not Jesus, and B, that sucks, because if you love everyone equally you don't love anyone particularly, and you have a bunch of vague friend/acquaintances. It's almost like you have to know all these acquaintances to appreciate your real friends.

The above paragraph is the reason I think that this problem is not unique to me. To not have this problem; that is, to not have friends whom you really don't admire; is either to be very lucky or to be Jesus. ("Jesus" used here as a vague embodiment of a creature that loves everyone equally, and not as a specific religious figure) Of course, I could be wrong: I could be a real ass and you all think everyone else in the world is great.

And again, maybe this isn't a problem, because to appreciate great friends you have to have a contrast of okay friends. And for each okay friend, I'd say overall, it's more than worth it to take the good with the bad. So what am I even writing? I don't know- it's 6 AM and I deserve to get all dumbass-psychological once in a while; hey, if you don't like it, don't read it. You readers deserve something a little deeper than the usual "life is great! life is bad! life is great again!" meanderings of this blog... if this is a window inside my mind, I don't want you to think I'm shallower than I am. But if you've read this far, read the next paragraph:

Admittedly, this post so far is a bit judgmental. To say that I have friends I don't admire is to say that I think I am better than some of my friends. I don't think that; not consciously. If I reason about it, I think that most other people in the world rank better than me as a person, mostly because I haven't really been through any hardship in my life ever. On the other hand, I don't have self-esteem issues here; I feel good about myself as a person, because I think that I've done just about the best I could with what I've been given. Some people, I can say, I am better than you as a person, because I have taken what I had and made the most of it better than you have.
But ultimately, my intent is not to say that I'm better than anyone else, it's to expose my subconscious, and by getting it out into the open, to understand and control it. Most of my judgment of other people is subconscious, so I'm just exploring the darker corners of my psyche. If you understand and appreciate that, thanks. Otherwise, don't let an online post piss you off towards me; please talk to me in person before harboring another one of those hidden grudges because of anything I say online. The printed word on the white fluorescent screen is an expressionless messenger; emotions don't translate too well, and things can get taken too seriously.

Friday, December 16, 2005


I made a booya tonight! With Julie's help, and also help from Joe and Connor and Ashley who went on a last-minute run for things. And last but not least, Mike Yin, without whose car and pots I would probably still be muddling around in the trafficky clutches of Squirrel Hill.

I would like to extend formal blog shouts-out to the aforementioned people. Or whatever it is that you bloggers do. And by "bloggers", I don't mean in the "news-gathering somewhat-respectable rumormongers" sense, I mean the "ninth grader posting about OMG how much she loves LFO" sort of way. And by that, I mean that doesn't make sense because LFO was way before blogs. Point is, thanks much to Julie, Joe, Connor, Ashley, and Mike. Couldn't have pulled off this immense stewing without all of you.

I would also like to extend a formal blog shout-out to Mr. Brian Gray, the guest of honor at the booya. For serious, it hasn't been the same here without him, and I'm real glad he's back. Or "you", as the case may be, in that said Mr. Gray I think constitutes one third of the people who read this blog on a regular basis. Point is, he has returned to make the kingdom right again. Just like Aslan.

Point is, things are great here at Happy U.

Sunday, December 11, 2005


Err... so clearly the way to do things is to do them, not mope about how stuff is awful. Who knew that, even though things seemed bad yesterday, they'd be done today?! Surprise! Life continues!

I got The 212 Assignment 80% done and handed it in (due tonight). I mean, I've worked on it for over 20 hours in the last 4 days or so... there's not much more they can ask. If they want more than that, sorry! But more importantly, I'm satisfied with my work. Take that, SCS!

Saturday, December 10, 2005


I'm sitting in the fucking cluster right now. It's Saturday night. Here I am. I am 2/5 of the way through an assignment, have made no progress in the last two hours, and see little hope of making any further progress. This assignment is so ridiculous that all the TA's have stopped giving office hours because they're just too drained. I'm sitting at this goddamn computer in the Unix cluster, because the banter of a few CS trolls is quieter than the banter of a couple of guys in the Windows cluster talking about how much or how little money they have. A side effect is that I'm sitting at this goofy-ass Unix computer that has such cute quirks as:
-backspace and delete are switched
-getting a decent text editor is a lot harder than it should be
-you can't open acrobat files in a browser- you have to download and open them through typing "acroread" on the command line
-oh yeah, and when I click the middle mouse button, it takes me to http://www.assi.com/. What?!

I'd really like to go have fun somewhere, doing something, it doesn't even matter. Or even, I wish I could do this assignment at home, on my own computer, but due to AFS and etc, that doesn't work. Oh well, that's life I guess.

Snowman Update

Someone built, from the ashes of 4-story snowman mcgee, another snowman. He's only got 3 stories, and he's kind of tiny, compared to the original, but whatever. Whoever did that rocks.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

I just had a Great Life Experience™

It's snowing a lot! So I went to the Cathedral lawn to have a walk around and enjoy the snow. I took my camera, because I'm a fool. You can't take pictures in the dark like that!

At any rate, some kids were building a snowman. So I said, I'll take some damage. What?? Okay, I'm watching Joe play the Magic: the Gathering computer game, and I was talking and typing, and so that sentence just completed itself. I'll start over.

At any rate, some kids were building a snowman. So I said, I'll build a snowman. So I did. I got a big ball of snow, lugged it over in front of Webster, and plunked it down. I made 3 more big balls of snow, plopped them on top, and there you go, a 4-story snowman.

There you go! Proof that it existed! Proof necessary because, shortly afterwards, a big drunk jock "slipped" and knocked it over. He was all like "oops, sorry man, I slipped, that sucks, dude" and snickering. That's great! I got my snowman knocked over by a big drunk jock! Hilarious! Life is wonderful!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

It's snowing!

And it's getting in to that time of year when everything's a party. Classes are over- party! Exam week and I have no exams- party! Go home, it's Christmas- party!

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Currently manic

I met with a counselor a couple weeks ago (through CAPS! it's free! you get 12 free sessions!)... I was all depressed and wanted to know if I was actually depressed or just sad. Turns out I was just sad. Well, good to know, anyway.

But she asked if I ever experience mania, describing a sensation of a ton of energy and euphoria, where you can't sleep or anything, lasting like 24-48 hours. Well, until she mentioned the 24-48 hours thing, I thought, "all the time." Usually on weekends or when something really sweet is coming up, and usually after some coffee.

Right now, I'm getting that. Now, son of a gun, I had a 20oz. of diet dr. pepper a few hours ago, when I thought I'd be in UC318 for hours. I thought, pop doesn't have enough caffeine to get me manic. But it does, and now here I am. God, it's a wonderful sensation. I can do anything right now. It's one of the greatest feelings on earth, partially because I feel able to really be me, able to really enjoy life right now. Everything else is better. It'll suck a little bit tomorrow because I'll be low on sleep (especially after the last 2 nights) but right now, I feel great. I'm trying to calm myself down, because really, I'm tired too.

Why are things great?

-Little Footsteps was great. I'm so proud of it. I think I probably did the best job I've ever done in it, just because I hopefully progressed as an actor since WASP a year ago. WASP might have been a better final product- man, that show was great. But whatever, Little Footsteps was great too. All of us (incl. actors, directors, and all the tech folks- thanks so much to you guys by the way!) did excellently.

-No more rehearsals! I love SnS, I like acting, but it'll be nice to have some time off.

-This weekend's been great. Saturday's party at Il Valetto house was a lot sweeter than I thought it'd be. I took notes in Sharpie marker on an exercise band. I'm becoming more comfortable with who I am again, I think. That's a lot to say as an offhand remark, and I'm not sure if it's entirely true, but I hope so. I feel like I've backslid as a person this semester, and maybe I'm climbing back out.

-City of Angels passed for Carnival, and I feel good about the decision we as a board made. It may be very cool.

-I may turn said party notes into a story. Or maybe I'll just post them. I want to write something. It'll suck, but I want to write something. Maybe it'll be about the party, maybe not. This is the kind of thing I say when I'm manic.

-Four funny things today:
1. I yelled "fuck! shit!" prompting someone (Grubb? Gerrit?) to ask "Did you just step in the Tourette's spot?"
2. A good 185 pun from Julie: 185 neutrons walk into a bar and ask "How much for a drink?" The bartender says, "For you, no charge."
3 and 4. These are posters I saw. One said, in the middle of a page:

Kiva Han
starbucks lol

The other one said "Do you want a free iPod?" and it had pictures of ipods. No contact info or anything. And it had the little tear-off things on the bottom, where it usually has a website or phone number or something. But it just said:

Yes, please.
Yes, I would, indeed.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Add to that pie chart a big slice of study abroad!

Man, every time I look into this I get more excited. I don't even know where I'm going yet.

So I want to go to the Alps. Is that a bad motivation? I mean, I feel like that's like saying I want to study in Hawaii because I can go to the beach, or something. Study abroad isn't about taking a semester-long vacation. (is it?)

But here are my arguments, so if you want to play devil's advocate, I can play god's advocate, and banish you back into the hell-hole from which you came!

  1. I'm not going to England or France. Everyone goes there.

  2. Ideally, I'm not going to an English-speaking place. Sorry, Australia/New Zealand. Going there would be kind of sweet, but not challenging at all. It'd be like going to Chicago or something, still kind of Americanized. I think. I could be wrong, but that's my impression.

  3. There's not much in Africa. There are a few programs, but I don't think going to Africa would be relevant to my future at all, or in any other way useful.

  4. Same with Latin America. I am probably overgeneralizing here in thinking that Africa and Latin America are behind in the computer areas, but really, I can't see myself going there.

  5. The smaller Western European countries are just very interesting. My mom went to Luxembourg and loved it, I've talked to some friends who have been there ("there" being "small Western European countries") and loved them- they just sound so cool. Again, gross overgeneralization. But there it is. Switzerland in particular sounds a little bit like Utopia.

  6. Okay, so the choice is a little bit arbitrary... big deal! Wherever I go, I'd get a big new experience, so Switzerland is as good as any.

And the fact that there is awesome Alps skiing doesn't hurt.

At first I didn't think there was anything in Germany for a CS student like me, because I don't want to just study humanities for a semester. I think that would be unproductive. I don't have (or want) to be studying all CS stuff, but a little CS/math would be nice. Oh, yeah, and I don't know German. That's not a big deal for just surviving in Germany or Switzerland (I'm taking Beginning German), but it's less than good if you want to take classes in German. So I need English math/CS classes in Germany.

Apparently they exist though! Somewhere! I'm looking into it more, and this might work out really well! I'll keep you posted.