Thursday, December 20, 2007


Today I'm staying home because I'm supposed to get 3 different package deliveries. It was some clever delivery coordinating on my part. And I'm doing work, but mostly looking out the window too frequently to make sure the fed-ex guy isn't sneaking up to my door to leave a "missed you" note before running away.

I went to a concert with Rachel last night. It was alright. I liked the first opening band the most, and Lemonheads fans are all so weird. They're old and they get really into the music and dance weird. The music is sort of between softrock and hardrock so the audience doesn't really know what to do. And some of the people are just plain weird. Anyway, it was a decent time. I didn't drink any alcohol, just had one extremely overpriced coke. And I think I managed to go the whole night without saying anything mean to Rachel.

Rachel: You're cornering the market on Kates from Colorado.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Gunshots part 2

Regarding the last post: I am still alive. A off-duty cop got mugged and as the muggers were running off he started shooting at them. Then the muggers escaped in a "white car" and police are on the lookout. There was one black male with dreadlocks and one black male in a multi-colored shirt. Yep, that was the extent of the details provided by the offduy cop, which makes me think he was drunk at the time. I mean, even I could have given a better description than saying just a white car. So we've got a drunk cop shooting his gun in the middle of the street, just down the block from me. Awesome.

I was just thinking, it's pretty dark in space, right? I bet it's so dark, that the vast majority of the time you wouldn't even be able to see a space ship. Like in Star Trek, they always show the Enterprise and other ships maneuvering around space, but I think now that space doesn't have enough ambient light for you to see ships. It'd be like trying to see around at night when there's no moon out. All you'd see of another ship is a dark spot where it's blocking the starlight.

It's freezing cold in my apartment. Tomorrow I'm buying a space heater, we'll see if that helps. I hate being cold. Never again am I going to live in a cold apartment during the winter. This I vow. Maybe I should move south. It's getting up to 70 this week in Texas.

kate: I just don't want you to stress out about it.
me: Don't worry, I'm not stressing.
kate: Good.
me: I don't stress out very often.
kate: Yeah, that's because you don't have any emotions.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


I'm feeling much more cheerful now, thanks for asking. My neighbor Whitney just knocked on my door to see if I was okay, "because of the gun shots." I was confused. What gunshots? You mean those fireworks? That's just kids being kids, and it wasn't even nearby. But no, she was certain it was guns and from just across the street, and she had already called 911.

Now (2 hours later) there's still a cop in a car sitting outside with the lights flashing. I'm not sure what he thinks he's doing there, maybe it's a show of force to deter any more violence. Maybe you'll read about my street in the paper tomorrow.

Quote pending.

Happy F***ing Tuesday.

Today I ran into the office 10 minutes after I was supposed to talk to an attorney on the phone. Oh well, he took it well. Sorta sad today. It was a great weekend of wandering around the mountains, but in the long run I think I'm going to regret it.

This is the opposite of the Christmas Spirit. I'm not going to see any of my family this Christmas. I saw them all a few months ago for an extended period in Hawaii and my sister's wedding, and Christmas was pretty much unanimously called off. All my sisters are visiting their spouses' families. I was thinking of going off with a friend for Christmas, but you know, the more I think about it the more uncomfortable that sounds. I barely like talking to my own family, how am I going to cope with someone else's family? It doesn't bother me, not seeing the family, but the fact that it doesn't bother me is starting to bother me. Maybe I have family issues I didn't know about. Mostly I'm just upset with girls, and, of course, myself.

Kate: dc seems like it has a lot of selfish people
(i'm about to conceed there are selfish people here, but they are also everywhere)
me: there are some selfish people in dc-
Kate: selfish people like you!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Illness and a poem

I've been sick for a while. Since like thursday last week. But I managed to briefly get out for a turkey frying at Eric's (which was fun) and a Brand New concert out in Baltimore with Rachel and Eric (which was okay). Probably the last time I'll see Brand New, the just get more and more pretentious and showey and less substantial with each tour. They didn't play a single song off their first album, and the lights were set to flash right in the eyes of the audience. I think the lead singer must have been having a bad hair day or something because they didn't once use lights from overhead. Oh well.

I'm watching a youtube clip from South Park, where they explain evolution (probably the funniest explaination of evolution I've ever heard) and one of the brilliant youtube users wrote a nice little poem in his comment. Is it a explaination of evolution? Refutation of evolution? Who can say, he left no other hints. There's something admirable in the poem's simplicity and lack of proper grammer at its conclusion, as though to say, "You are retarded." Not sure if the first line is a typo or intentional so I'm leaving it.

Rabbits look similar to squirrles
Rhinos look like hippos
Man looks like monkey

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Wedding Photos

The page is about 16 megs.

I might have said some somewhat inflammatory things about people. Rachel, tell me if I need to do some editing before wedding people see it. We did have some weird pact about sharing photos, right?

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Puja and Sunjeev's Wedding

Puja's wedding was lots of fun. I had kind of a lame thanksgiving where I went to work and then afterwards played videogames. The next morning I flew out to LAX. My first flight was delayed because one of the flight attendants was running late. Very late. We were supposed to leave at 10AM, but by 11:30 the guy still hadn't showed up and people were pissed. Eventually one of the workers got on a speaker and said "We've receieved confirmation that the flight attendent is in the airport, it shouldn't be long now!" Then like 30 minutes later a guy in the a flight attendent uniform comes strolling down the walkway. Everyone was watching him and a bunch of people were standing but there were no cheers, just lots and lots of angry faces. I was upset too. This asshole thinks he can just sleep in late, he should be billed for my time and every other person on that plane. We were already highly irritated and this man's casual stroll up to the gate was not helping anything. I was about to stand up on my chair and yell "Lynch the bastard!" when saw him display some fairly feminine mannerisms while talking to his coworkers. That stopped me. Far be it from me to incite a possible hate-crime. Later we found out that he wasn't the originally scheduled flight attendent anyway. The original flight attendent got in a car accident or something on the way to the airport and just never showed up so this guy was filling in.

From LAX I picked up a rental car, probably wisely went with the GPS option and then tried to drive to the hotel. But the GPS was fixated on the car rental as a destination, so I did a large loop back to Avis and it told me I had arrived. Finally I did get to the hotel, but everyone was at Puja's night-before dinner which was somewhere else (I didn't know where) so I went to Jack in the Box and watched tv in the hotel room. Fast food isn't as good as it used to be. People got back from the dinner at like 11:30 and I briefly said hello to Puja and talked a bit with Rachel, and then went to sleep.

Puja, without prior warning, called our room at 7AM to come have breakfast with her. It was a pretty good buffet spread, so we ate, then went to Target and bought a bunch of random stuff people needed. Hmmm, oh, then I drove around with Rachel looking for somewhere to get lunch. I thought we were driving toward Disneyland because I had passed it on the way to the hotel the evening before, but apparently I got all confused and totally drove the wrong way. Oh well. Rachel and I were wearing matching "I survived Puja and Sunjeev's wedding" shirts, on the back of which said "Just Married". And we got congradulated by some random people on our new marriage. Rachel quickly corrected them :)

The wedding itself was pretty interesting. Sunjeev road around the hotel on a horse. Rachel and the other bridesmaids (wearing Indian wraps) carried candles around and weren't allowed outside to see the horse because they were women on the bride's side. Then there was a long series of blessings and symbolic actions. The whole thing took a few hours. There was an open bar afterwards and a pretty good dinner and some dancing (which I actually participated in and was having an alright time, up until the bar closed toward the end of the night and I started sobering up).

There was an after-party at Puja and Mehrnaz's room, where we played cards. F*** The Dealer (where I somehow guessed cards amazingly well, and got the majority of the cards on the first try, and pretty much all the rest on the second try, only having to drink like twice), Kings (Puja's old coworkers have no skills in the "Questions" event), and Asshole (it took me two hands to make it to president and then I only stayed there for two hands before getting ousted. But we were playing without the President getting any tribute and I think I would have done well if we had been doing that.) We had a truely atrocious selection of liquor. No beer at all. I drank rum and coke (horrible, foul stuff) until the rum ran out and then I started drinking tequilla and coke, which was exponentially worse.

I didn't get much sleep at all, and the next morning my rental car's GPS decided to take me in a nice circle several times before finding a gas station. Then getting back to the rental place was impossible, I circled around for like 30 minutes because the stupid thing said "Avis Rental on the left" but there was nothing on the left. Finally I used the rental place's address and just hunted it down the old-fashiond way. I missed my flight but got a standby flight about an hour later. Then I was unable to board 2 standby flights in Chicago, and they wanted me to wait until 6am the next morning! So instead I got a flight to Dulles and got in at about 4am. My baggage went to Reagan but was easily picked up later.

Photos coming soon.

(Much to Dave's disappointment, at Tom's wedding all girls around college age were lesbians)
Dave: They shouldn't be allowed to have lesbian bridesmaids! That should be a rule!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Professional Bowler Right Here

Just looking at the old playstation game "Tactics Ogre" on Amazon. The game was released in 1995, but the cheapest used copy of the game for sale is $70. And the cheapest new copy.. $350. Rediculous. Well, I just sold my playstation 2 anyway, and I'm not getting a playstation 3 until the new Tekken comes out. In the mean time I guess I'll do something more productive than play strategy games.

I went bowling for Eric's birthday Saturday and I beat Eric, Dave, John Sawyko, and Jon Reiling. Usually Eric does a little better than me, but not this time. I think it's because the other guys have been dabbling in that bowling with the little mini-ball and pins and it's thrown off their game. I got like 135 the first game, and 160 the second game, which put me about 5 points ahead of Eric each time (Eric came in second on both games). Oh, there's another possibility. Eric threw a strike as the very first throw of the first game, but Jon had forgotten to hit the "start bowling" button so it didn't get counted. And Eric was pissed and had to re-throw and ended up getting like 7 for that frame. It was pretty humerous but nobody laughed too loudly because Eric felt robbed. That bad start might have thrown him off for the rest of the night.

Also last weekend there was a dinner at Dave's and he cooked up this stuff called "Leche de la tigre" (Tiger's milk). It's some drink with egg, milk, sugar, and rum, and was really good. Well, the first cup was good, after that it started to make me feel sick. After the dinner we went to a sort of pretentious party at Dave's neighbor's place, and I had some Coors to settle my stomach. Despite Liza's opinions otherwise, there were no hot girls at this party. Saturday there was a party at Val's place way out in northeast dc. It was a good time, though kinda quiet, as parties go. We ended up getting a rid back from some sketchy girls with Eric's friend Jason, who I detest but managed to not yell at through the whole car trip.

Did you know that if there was a hole through the center of the earth, from here to China, it'd take more than 21 hours of free-fall to reach the other side. That's if you're shooting through with your arms tucked to go as fast as possible. It could take more like 70 hours if you have your arms out to catch the wind. That movie "Journey to the Center of the Earth" is absolutely incorrect, and there's no way you could walk that far in your lifetime. These are the troubling things that occupy my thoughts at work on Monday. (Obviously the heat from the earth's core will probably burn you up before you make it though. And the reversal of gravity after you pass the center would mean you'd only make it a couple miles beyond the center before reversing direction and falling back toward the middle again. I'm not sure whether you'd be weightless or what when you're actually in the center there. You might feel 1/2 gravity in each direction, sort of tugging at all sides, which would be strange.)

(from a column by videogame writer Jeff Vogel)
I play a lot of World of Warcraft - like everyone else on the planet. The other week, for the first time, I bought some gold. That's right. I spent some of my real, actual money for imaginary gold. It felt so good.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Joe gets lectured

I got lectured recently about Knocked Up. I made the mistake of comparing it to Superbad. "Superbad had some hilarious dialogue and Knocked Up really didn't. Also Knocked Up had too much pregnancy and birth stuff. " That last line was a mistake. Apparently the scenes of giving birth are not disturbing, nor overly graphic, as I mistakenly thought at first. Instead it's such a beautiful, natural event that men need to learn to appreciate and be in awe of it.

First: bullshit. I don't eat dinner while watching the surgery channel for the same reason. The insides of the human body are pretty disgusting. And birth scenes are even worse because people are always yelling and the lady is usually grunting and screaming in the most disturbing way. It's like a mixture the surgery channel and a war movie, where people are screaming and bombs are going off. Also, new born babies are too gooey.

Second, I hate getting lectured. And it doesn't happen very often, because from most people I wouldn't take it. If most anyone had told me the same thing I'd have responded, "I completely disagree with everything you just said, and I think you're a lesser person for having said it. You've confused your personal opinions with global facts." Or if it was Eric, I'd just say "You're full of shit." Becsause we disagree about this sort of thing regularly. Instead, I was actively trying to get along with this girl (something that I do very, very rarely) and I had to really try to see her point.

"Hmm, that's a good point. I'll think on it." That, my friends, is what a Joe-lie sounds like.

(from an IEEE analysis of the recent international space station computer failure. They concluded it was caused by a power short caused by condensation on a power transformer that was depended on by all 3 of the triply-redundant systems)
"It is dismaying that after decades of experience with manned space stations, Russian space engineers still couldn't keep unwanted condensation at bay. But what's worse is that they designed circuitry that would allow one spot of corrosion to fell a supposedly triply redundant control computer complex. Another cause for dismay is that when trouble did develop, the Russians' first instinct was to blame their American partners."

Thursday, November 8, 2007

knocked up

Just watched Knocked Up for the first time. Pretty funny, but it would have been better without the pregnant chick. That's right, I said it. The parts with the guy friends are funnier. And this chick stopped being hot as soon as she started whaling up. Whitney has tried to insist that pregnancy is beautiful, but it's not really. Disproportionately fat girls are not hot, irrationally angry girls are not hot, and newborn babies are all slimey and disgusting. Wow, i'm being so negative.

My new computer is working. I'm give away this old one. If any of you need a moderately crappy (though fully functional) computer just let me know.

Oh, and some new photos were posted.

Whitney: coach, louis vutton- or something spelled like that
Whitney: kate spade-
me: what's that, brands?
Whitney: all good brands.
me: ah
me: the girls i know carry tiny little bags that can't really hold anything
me: what brand is that?
Whitney: stupid.
me: stupid because you don't know?
me: buuuurn
Whitney: ohh.
Whitney: burn. it was.

Monday, November 5, 2007

"Nada Mucho"

This Thursday I have a test at work, and I was supposed to study last weekend but I totally forgot. Having a test at work sounds kinda weird, but we don't do it often. It's only for the employees that management suspects are a little too slow for this job. Ha, not really. I don't think my supervisor suspects that yet.

Went to a post-halloween party in Columbia Heights last Saturday. I was a goth "blind date from hell", complete with a wilted flower. Liza helped me spike my hair using blue hair gel, and it came out surprisingly well. Dave said I should consider it as my permenant hair style. I don't think I'm going to do that just now though, maybe later.

I'm listening to Manowar. They're a heavy metal group, and so, so much better than Metallica or whatever else you'd consider trashy heavy metal. I don't really understand their fetish for illustrations of heavily muscled mostly-naked dudes, nor am I generally impressed with Norse mythology, but some of their songs are really great. You have to sift through a lot of drool overly-dramatic crap to find it, but when you do it's like striking gold. They have maybe 10 albums. I went through them all, and sorted out maybe 45 minutes of glorious rock anthems. Well worth the trouble too, if they only played these songs in concert it would be the best concert since Andrew WK's first album. Unfortunately the concerts are probably filled with barely clothed bodybuilder guys with long hair and dripping sweat. Possibly the least attractive mosh pit ever. And they only tour in Europe, so there you go. All that and BO to boot. I'll stick with the albums.

(we may have new rules in the office soon that limit a client's number of RCEs)
Spittle: They told me they're not allowed to RCE because of the new rules.
me: The new rules aren't going into effect yet.
Spittle: Yeah but they're worried that it might go into effect retro-actively and they don't want to bust their nut early by using one up.
me: Umm. You probably shouldn't use that phrase around the office.
Spittle: Hey, that's what the lawyer just told me on the phone. He said "We don't want to bust a nut too early."

Thursday, November 1, 2007

computer issues

I got my new computer yesterday but it does not work. It's probably my fault. First, I'm not sure if my old power supply is powerful enough. I bought the thing like 3 years ago and have no idea what it's wattage is. Second, I'm using a 20-pin power supply for a 24-pin power plug. I read on the internet that it should work so long as you line up the right pins, but who knows. And finally, I manually adapted a special super-quiet cpu fan I bought so that it works on this cpu socket that is wasn't designed for. The whole operation involved shaving plastic off the cpu mounting socket with a pen knife and putting a piece of sponge in as extra material to press the fan down on the processor. It's kinda shady. Now the computer powers up, as far as I can tell anyway, but nothing displays on the screen. I should plug in a harddrive and see if it tries to access it. Also I think I'm going to pick up a better power supply after work today at best buy. I wish there was a better computer store in the area but there isn't. Oh well, I'll figure it all out eventually.

Listening to Warp 11. They're not a very popular band, but I like them. They imitate other bands' musical styles and only write songs about star trek. Star trek mixed with sex, in every conceivable way. They're constantly mentioning Kirk's alien-girl fetish, weird borg sex with Seven-of-Nine (and through her, the whole borg collective), holodeck porn, and my favorite: "Prime Directive's gonna make my dick explode." Classy stuff, that's why I like it.

(from a "Dungeons & Dragons" movie review)
"Irons here jumps from crazed overacting to the ultimate overacting experience of a lifetime. If overacting as a villain was a fuel, Jeremy Irons would have just powered the entire planet from now until the end of time. He goes beserko! "

Monday, October 29, 2007

Weakerthans, Dual Monitors, and Apple Fritters

Saw the Weakerthans yesterday. It was a really early show, and its kinda soft music. Plus I couldn't drink too much because I had to get into work early today. But I was still decent. The drinking with Dave and Eric beforehand was probably a little more fun.

Today I disabled my dual monitors at work. 2 monitors isn't really conducive to productivity with this job. I remember when I was programming at home, you can look at the source code and the program results and do a cross-analysis to debug your program code. But here I end up using one monitor for work and the other monitor to read the news or videogame reviews and the two monitors together tire my eyes out 5 times as quickly. This will be better. Maybe I'll read fewer useless reviews.

Why do Apple Fritters have to be so big? The tastiest part is the edges, where it's not so apple-tasting. The middle tastes moderately disgusting, they should just make them normal sized. I don't need a 5 pound donut in the morning. My supervisor saw it sitting on my desk and told me "Stay healthy, Joe."

(from a Eragon movie review)
"Unfortunately, the dragon suddenly hits puberty and becomes a woman in about three seconds, and returns fully grown and able to talk psychically to Eragon in perfect English. So perfect, it has an English accent and sounds a lot like Rachel Weisz. She tells Eragon her name is Saphira, and that he is her rider. I guess he will be made a man, if beastiality counts! "

Friday, October 26, 2007

flu shots, etc.

Got a flu shot today from the hottest doctor-lady I've ever seen. (I managed to refrain from sexually harassing her.) Last year I got the flu despite getting the flu shot, which Whitney predicted because they were giving out shots for the wrong strain of flu. But Whitney tells me the shot's good against 3 of the 4 possible strains of flu and "pray to ur lucky stars u foot catch the fourth!" (Whitney gets lazy with her phone-texting sometimes.)

I'm wrapping up an entire week of waking up before or at 7 to get into work early for a class. It has been exhausting.

The kid who sits infront of me in the class is separating from his wife. We've been in class almost 2 weeks, and it started about a week ago. The kid is probably a year or two younger than me, and he doesn't get upset or anything when he talks about it, but I have noticed that he's developed a stutter. He and his buddies are completely convinced that the problems are all 100% the wife's fault. It's kinda interesting to see. "She used to make me coffee in the morning and fix my lunch. She can be very nice when she chooses to be, for some reason she's decided to be a bitch lately!" Well, who knows. Probably a better approach would be to admit that you're confused by the situation, and maybe talk to your soon-to-be-ex-wife, instead of clinging so firmly to "why's she being such a bitch?" But I don't really know the kid so I won't butt in. He's a mechanical engineer (working in foot pedals), so you know he's a little unbalanced from the start.

(from the "1,000,000 Strong for Stephen Colbert" facebook group's message board)

Kyle Hamilton (CSCC) wrote at 2:21pm
ah, pop culture fags... comedy central = creditable news??? just a bunch of mindless fodders being lead to slaughter...

Zachary Foster (UF) wrote at 2:21pm
Kyle you go to community college

Friday, October 19, 2007

Michael Clayton

Went to see Michael Clayton with Dave yesterday. Dave picked me up from work at about 1:30, and we drove over to the AMC theater in Alexandria, only to discover that all the parking in the parking lot we went into were marked "reserved". I guess there's some business in that same stripmall that reserves the spaces during work hours. So we tried to get over to the next parking lot and were forced by the street to get onto a highway going north over the railroad tracks. We quickly got back off that, did a U-turn, and crossed back over the railroad tracks, only to find that there was no exit to get back to the theater! We went down, did another U-turn, and came back up to discover that there was no exit from north-bound either. So we went further south, took the exit immediately before the theater, and ended up going to down other street with no way to get across the little stream back to the theater. It was frustrating, apparently the theater has railroad tracks on the north side and a stream on the south side, and the only way to get there from our highway (as I discovered on a map later) is to be on 495-E a few miles West of us, or 495-W a few miles east of us. So we should have gotten on the highway, gone down 2 exits and gotten off and re-entered the highway coming back. But instead we went to the theater out by Target near crystal city.

Michael Clayton sucked. All the critics on rottentomatoes are raving about it, but it's basically a stupid knockoff of that old John Travolta movie called A Civil Action. It's hard to go into the reasons it sucked without giving the whole thing away, but it did suck. The critics are saying that the storyline is subtle, but it's not really. Unless you really read (a lot) more into the dialogue than is implied by the characters or the story (ie, you stretch). And they're saying the characters are realistic, and I guess they are. The antagonist heistates and maybe tears up a little when she orders someone murdered, and the main character realizes he's a clog in the unethical industry of the practice of law, and it disillusions him. None of it makes the story AT ALL unpredictable. There were no twists, no surprises, and no character development (besides one guy going crazy, which in a way was a development). I give the movie both thumbs down.

Btw, exciting photos from the rafting trip can be found on my facebook profile, if you know where that is.

(I overhear one of my coworkers describing his job)
Guy: First, I find a reference. Second, I read the reference. Third, I make something up that the reference doesn't say and I send out a rejection.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Rafting the Devil's Soda: She don't come in Diet

Went whitewater rafting with Tom and Dave (and two of Tom's friends) this weekend. I had heard about the trip a few months ago, but Eric was psyched about it much more than myself and there were limited openings so I wasn't going to go. Then (long after I had forgotten about the whole thing) last thursday Dave asked if I wanted to go because Eric and John Sawyko had bailed at the last minute. I am a true merchant, I haggled Dave down to $100 from like $150.

I had never really thought about rafting before. Apparently there are different levels of whitewater rafting, and some of it can be dangerous. Dave gave me no warning (he forwarded me an email from Tom about the trip, but had "accidentally" removed all the html tags), so I showed up thinking it was going to be whitewater rafting like the rafting rides they have at amusement parks (which were fun because I don't like heights but I don't mind getting thrown around or getting wet). Instead, we went down one of the top 10 most violent commercially rafted rapids in the world (number 7 to be precise).

Tom and Cameron showed up and joked all night about how this river is going to chew you up and spit you out. They spent all night doing impressions of the old shark hunter guy from Jaws, where he's lecturing the cops on how dangerous sharks are. Except they were talking about how dangerous this river is. "You ain't getting nothing out of the Gauley! At the end of the day it's just a matter of how much she takes from ya!" "This white water is the Devil's soda! (then after the guide sees the girl in our group) What are you here for, girly? The Devil's Soda don't come in diet!" I guess drinking diet soda is feminine. Also, our guide was going to take one look at us and say "You boys on the upper Gauley? Is this a joke? 'Cause I ain't laughing!" That'd be right before one of us would try to introduce ourselves to the guide and he'd interrupt with "I don't want to know no names!" As he had lost so many foolish amateurs already and didn't want to get attached. The guys had watched youtube videos of this river (and people crashing badly) and had psyched themselves up to the point where Cameron had nightmares the night that night about the river. I wasn't scared by it, just a little concerned. The only comment our guide actually made was "Oh this is your first time? And you decided to start with the Upper Gauley..." Our dead-weight (see below) was also all first-time rafters, so I didn't think he was talking to me specifically and I didn't respond.

The morning of rafting we got up at 5:30. We were planning on renting wetsuits but we didn't make it to the meeting in time for that. I went out on the river with a t-shirt and shorts, and froze pretty much the whole day. Had I not worn the shirt I probably would only have been cold half that time because the weather was pretty warm out once the sun was up. There were 5 of us, and because it's an 8 person raft we picked up 3 more people. I was hoping for hot chicks, Tom was hoping for experienced rafters, and I think Cameron was hoping it'd just be the five of us. Well we ended up getting 3 older guys added to our raft, all of whom were useless and one of whom was fairly over-weight. Basically we picked up about 650 pounds of dead-weight. Our guide was pretty talented though, and seemed to anticipate that whenever he yelled "forward!" the left side would go forward a little faster than the right.

We only had one disasterous wreck. On the rapid called "Pillow rock" or something like that, we were going down full-tilt and hit a rock (actually i think it might have been the pillow rock). We hit it sideways after spinning. It was my side that hit, so one second we're flying down the rapids and the next second I'm tipping over backwards out of the raft and I looked up and the raft was almost vertical in the air above me and still rising and people are scrambling to hold on. Tom and I fell out first (tom was sitting behind me in the raft). I was sure the raft was going to flip (after seeing the otherside practically over my head) so I wanted to get out of the way before people started falling on top of me. But it turns out that the raft didn't flip. The tour guide (who had managed to duck flat very shortly before the rock hit) and dave (who we all thought was just very lucky but it turns out he might have been desperately clutching to the chicken rope when the raft went vertical, something you're not supposed to do because you might flip the boat) managed to stay in the raft. Everyone else got dumped.

I hit my foot on a rock, got dunked a bunch of times and resurfaced to find myself about 5 feet from Tom, both of us right behind a rock that had water flowing over the top. Not a good place to be because there were rafts behind ours coming down the rapids. We see the almost-empty raft downstream (where dave and the guide were standing up yelling but I wasn't sure what was being said) and start swimming towards it. After a good 30 seconds of very hard swimming we had somehow made no progress. Absolutely none and I was dead tired. I remember thinking "It's a good thing i've got this life jacket on!" as I dropped my exhausted arms and promptly sank in the water. I was surprised and kicked to the surface, immediately sank again, and then resurfaced again and had time to look around to see the boat about 15 feet away. I also spotted Tom way off to the side clinging to a rock while people were telling him to swim toward a nearby boat. I swam to our boat, and managed to grab Dave's hand just before the current could drag me past (aparently a bunch of people were narrowly missed by Dave because the current was pulling them by too quickly). I got my arms pulled into the boat and grabbed on but was too tired to make any progress on my own, and then Dave and another guy pulled me the rest of the way in.

There are some pretty exciting photos of the whole boat going up in the air and me and Tom in the act of falling backwards. I'll post them when I get them. Nobody was seriously injured. It's a good thing we fell at that spot also, because there were other rapids where if you fall you're supposed to swim away from a particular side because the water runs under a lot of the rocks and if you get swept down with the water you'll drown. And after falling in the river I had no idea what the guide had said about where to swim, had any rocks been nearby I probably would have instincually swam toward them.

This isn't our raft, but we did go down that same rapid.

Today my arms are a little sore, one of my legs is super sore, and my butt is really, really sore. I have a little trouble sitting even now (36 hours after the rafting). It's worse than after your first day snowboarding.

We stopped by and saw the New River Gorge Bridge. It's pretty awesome, it's the highest bridge in the nation. But I think I was the only person who thought it was very cool. Now I'm back in dc, and have to work 12 hour days this week. I wasn't planning on it, but now I have less time to make up for last week's slacking. The surprise rafting trip was 3 days I was planning on working and a my sister's almost-surprise weekend trip to NYC is one more (she's presenting a documentary she made).

Kate: I hope the rafting trip was fun, I bet you're closer to being a real woman now.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

a new low of laziness

Today I bought a new pack of socks just to put off doing laundry. Yes, a new low of laziness has been reached.

Actually it's not as bad as it sounds. I had to stop by the post office this morning to pick up a package (Rome season 2) and as I was leaving I was upset that I was going to have to leave work early to do laundry tonight. "I just did laundry less-than a week ago too, how can I only have one pair of clean socks left!!!" At that very moment I noticed that the discount-store I was walking past had socks in its display. 6 pairs for $5 because they're "slightly imperfect". So I went in and bought a package. I don't care about them being slightly imperfect. Hopefully they're wearable, but I don't really care, so long as they're clean. Hardly anyone ever sees my socks anyway.

(a bunch of people are crowded around a computer)
me: What's going on in here? Looking at porn?
Gabe: Noooo. We're thinking of getting a gift for New-Guy Joe.
(they call the other Joe "new-guy joe" because he's been in office for a fairly long time)
me: Is it his birthday?
Gabe: In December.
me: What are you thinking of getting him?
(long pause)
Gabe: ...A mail-order bride.
Mike: It's the gift that keeps on giving!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

on videogames

Got an email from Dan saying he's saving up money for a ps3 to play tekken online. I just looked it up, and somehow at the beginning of this month they came out with tekken 5 playable online without telling me! I knew the japanese had it (those bastards), but didn't know it was available in the states.

So I was looking into getting a ps3 (I have a little more spending money than Dan), but I was just checking and there are no really good games for the ps3! I went to gamerankings and did a search for the top 40 RPGs on the ps3 (RPGs are really the only games worth playing). And it came back with a list of 4! The only one that got decent reviews was that Elder Scrolls: Oblivion game too, a game which is almost definitely better on either the xbox or pc, and I'm not really interested in playing it anyway. The PS3 has like 4 games that have gotten decent reviews, and they're all either sports or stupid action games.

So, what to do, what to do. I'm not sure. Is it worth $500 to endlessly humiliate Tekken pseudo-players nationwide (besides Dan occasionally) and not play another game until Tekken 6? It might be. Or I was also thinking of just getting a Wii instead (getting both sounds overindulgent) because I want to play Residet Evil (yes, I have zero interest in Zelda). Though the Wii is kinda hard to find, and I refuse to pay more than MSRP. I refuse to get price gouged like a sap, or propogate the culture of price gouging. I still have my dignity!* They should make a multiplayer counter-strike-esque shooter for the Wii. Normally I don't like shooters, but that'd be kinda cool.

I'm busy at work this weekend, and I haven't had any time for videogames in at least the last month. But I'm looking forward to it soon. I was also thinking of buying the Office DVDs and Rome season 2, but I may have too many dvds as it is. I hate to accumulate stuff. Though Rome is a great show and the second is the last season.. I'm such a consumer.

(from a review of Def Jam: Icon, a fighting game for the ps3)

"[The control scheme] takes a while to learn, because the game moves at a much slower pace than most fighters. Maybe that's because the MCs, or their digital counterparts, are bigger and thicker than most fighting characters. It might simply be difficult to react quickly wearing a massive parka."

(I remember thinking, while playing Def Jam: Fight for NYC years ago, that the rappers fighting in their huge jackets and chains and whatnot seemed even more rediculous when than when they were interacting, boasting about how badass and hardcore each one was)

*109th Rule of Aquisition: "Dignity and an empty sack is worth the sack."

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Always Sunny in Philadelphia

In Arcata (the wedding last weekend was in the total hippy town) I happened to catch 2 episodes of the show It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia and they were pretty hilarious. I'm netflixing the dvds now. Here's a youtube promo. It's not actually a clip from the show, but it has a similar tone and writing. Warning: Contains Adult Language and Situations.

Still doing work, maybe I'll write something here tomorrow.

Slashdot commenter: How come Shaolin kung-fu masters aren't winning UFC championships and such? The reason is simple. Shaolin kung-fu is easily beaten by powerful grappling just as easily as scissors beats paper. When a huge Zangeif type person grabs all their limbs and holds them to the ground, their fancy kung-fu runs out pretty quickly.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Hawaii and a little sister's wedding

Right now I'm waiting at the airport with a lot of time to kill, so I'll write this now. I'm heading back to dc tonight. I spent about 6 days in hawaii. It was fun, but traveling with the family is a little annoying. With 6 people, everything is a compromise, and after a while I get tired of compromising. I don't really like japanese food (besides the very, very occasional california rolls), and all my sisters love japanese food, so we only at it like 3 times in hawaii. Still, they didn't push me around too much, and there were a few days that I just wandered around by myself and did what I wanted. We were right on the waikiki beach, which is nice, but mostly alcohol free. You can't drink outdoors, nobody else in my family drinks, and I didn't feel like sitting in the bar by myself. I was clean and sober the whole time. On saturday night I was walking down the street and a girl asked me if I wanted "to party". I don't think she was a prostitute, but I wasn't sure what exactly "partying" meant so I declined. I don't want to get involved in anything sketchy. I did a little snorkling and got fairly sunburned. I wore thong-sandals for a single day and cut my feet up pretty badly just from them rubbing on the rubber sandals. Yep, sandals are the devil. And so, so feminine, I don't know what I was thinking wearing them. Oh and I saw NIN in their last concert for their "Day One" tour. It wasn't a album I particularly liked, but they played a lot of old stuff too. Hawaiian people are short (especially the girls), and twice I almost tripped over girls in the mosh pit because they were less than 5 feet tall and I wasn't looking down. What were they doing in there anyway? It's not like they can see anything.

I have zero photos from my little sister kathryn's wedding. I was planning on taking some with my phone's camera but the phone's battery had died in hawaii and I apparently forgot the charger in dc. So my phone was useless almost the whole trip, and the internet was spotty, but I don't think too many people were looking for me so it's alright. (editors note: actually, I'm back in dc now and still have no charger, so phone is still down.) I have no photos, but it was a really fun wedding. I was worried that my uniform of a grey shirt, brown pants, and gold tie would look silly (as it sounds), but apparently it wasn't too bad. My table was right by the bar, where my sister had put an ice chest full of pre-paid beer, and I did quite a lot of drinking. The whole night, beer after beer, it was great. The beer wasn't very good, it was too ale-y for me, but after 2 or 3 I wasn't noticing. I even did a tiny bit of awkward dancing toward the end of the night. Family gatherings are so much easier with alcohol.

This week is the last week of our fiscal year at work. I am going to be busy.

(At Kathryn's wedding reception I was talking to a girl and an older lady from my childhood church. I excused myself to hit the restroom, come back and find that the older lady has moved on to another group)
me: So did she say anything bad behind my back?
girl: No, she only said nice things. She was really talking you up.
(Kathryn, moderately drunk, walks up and smoothly enters the conversation)
kathryn: Are we supposed to be talking up Joseph? Joseph is a great catch! Um, Joseph is smart! And funny! And strong! Though you can't tell it from that shirt.
(this string of rediculousness continued for like 20 seconds while I frantically and unsuccessfully tried to jump in and steer the conversation away. Drunken disaster. I suspect this happens a lot at weddings when you're an unmarried older sibling of the bride/groom.)

Monday, September 10, 2007

a weekend of daves

Very briefly, last weekend was the weekend of Daves. Dave Shapanka is moving away (probably to Chicago) and Dave Reynolds is back from NYC. Friday night Dave, Dave, Eric and I went drove down to Baltimore and went out to bars with Noelle and Rob. It was a nice night and the bar we went to had shuffleboard (Shapanka got super lucky on a clutch toss and beat me), foosball (eric narrowly beat me, mostly because of bad lighting and my unfamiliarity with the 3 goalies configuration), some beanbag throwing game (Reynolds and I were doing well until Noelle scored 3 times in a row), and that deer hunter arcade game (I didn't play). It was fun, which is surprising for Baltimore.

Satuday the other kids went tubing but I skipped on that. That night was the sausagefest at eric's. Reynolds and I went to georgetown briefly to congradulate Ravi, our freshman year roommate, because he just got engaged. There was a slightly embarassing moment when I didn't recognize Ravi's new fiance (I'd met her once). I walked up and gave Ravi a warm congradulations, and the girl standing next to him said hi to me. But I didn't know who she was, and there was another guy standing with them too, so I just told her hello. Dave, that jerk, just thought it was funny. He knew full well that she was the fiance but didn't warn me.

There was a Shakira-looking girl at the party with really, really big hair. Dave thought she was cute. "The more Shakira-like the better." At one point I was talking about Star Trek with Kate, Val (John Sawyko's girlfriend) and Eric Noriega. Like 5 minutes into the conversation, Val, who had been contributing knowledgeably until then, asked if Star Trek was the one with light sabers.

Wednesday morning I'm leaving for about two weeks in California and Hawaii. Then when I get back I have to do some cramming for the end of the year at work. I'll be back here next month.

(talking about Arnold Swarzenegger running for president)
Loan: He hasn't been a good governor.
me: I think he's been a great!
Loan: No, If you actually look at what he's done, he hasn't been a good governor.
Spittle: Listen I don't need to see how good he is. I've seen the movies. If he ran, I'd vote for him.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

on Harry Potter

Somehow I got spyware on my laptop. I wonder if I ever ordered a cd copy of Windows from Dell. I think I did... So rediculous, they should just give you the Windows CD when you buy the computer.

Just finished the last Harry Potter book. Decent book, but not my favorite. I think my favorite was the Goblet of Fire. It's all been downhill since then. This one had too much running around worried about some stupid mystery, and no classmate interaction. The glory days of the series were back when it was Harry's clique verses Malfoy's clique, all within the confines of the school. Maybe I should get that videogame Bully. Hmm.

(possible Deathly Hallows spoilers!)
My biggest problems with Harry Potter:

-Malfoy had zero character development. How cool would it have been if Malfoy did something redemptive? He's been a bully and a coward through the whole series, a change would have been nice. Not just the cliche standing up to his father for the first time (which he didn't even do), but a sacrifice. Malfoy should have done something great.

-Voldermort had no depth. His Tom Riddle incarnation was much better. Maybe he should have tried to convince Harry to join him. It would have been interesting: a passionate speech about how Voldermort being dictator would be in the best interests of everyone. Give him a chance to explain himself. Voldermort is supposedly intelligent too, he should have been able to make a convincing case. Instead he just ran around angry and baffled about how Harry manages to beat him each time.

-Hermoine is supposedly the greatest witch of her age, but she never really does anything special. She just has random knowledge whenever the story requires it. And she nags a lot.

-Magic is so inconsistant. Some spells require speaking, some don't. Some spells require a wand, some don't. Goblins and Elves have magic, but who knows what they can do with it, besides make magic swords. The way the room of requirement works and what it can do changes with each book.

-Snape had so much potential as a character and it was mostly wasted in the end with a stupid death scene and extracted memories. It doesn't really make sense that he spends so much time belittling and dispising Harry, and then as he's dying he wants Harry to see his memories to know he wasn't really a traitor. Why does he suddenly care what Harry thinks? It's such a coward's move, from someone who clearly was not a coward.

-The wizard society looks down on muggles, but we can do so much more than they can. It's interesting, none of the wizards go to universities, understand computers, drive cars. I honestly think, if the wizard community had just gone to the British FBI and explained who Voldermort was and exactly how his magic works and what it can do, the muggle police would have tracked him down using DNA, telephones, and computers. Then we would have shot him full of bullets, and that would have been that.

-The Weasleys are an entire family of redheads. This is only a small annoyance, but red hair is such a recessive gene than the odds of all 5 children having bright red hair, even when both parents have red hair, is pretty much zero. I think the only possible explaination is a long history of redhead inbreeding.

I have two copies of the book now (sort of accidentally), and I'm not planning on keeping either. So if you want one let me know.

I also saw Super bad. Pretty hilarious movie, if you can get into immature humor.

me: i might switch to linux. all i do on the computer is instant message, surf the web, and play music
linux more like gaysexnix

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

in the news

Reading the news. Besides the defecating coal (obviously), I think the most interesting aspect of this story would be the nutritional value of coal. The article says "survived by eating coal," but was eating the coal required for their survival? I guess I'm the only one who's really interested if the article's title is factually correct, but I think someone should have interviewed a doctor. Heck, even a chinese doctor would have been something. I guess drinking urine will let you survive longer without water, I'll keep that in mind for the next time I go down a mine shaft.

Haha, this version of the story gives more details.

I like this quote: "But then I thought, I have two children and my wife is ugly, so it'd be hard for her to remarry." What a nice thing to say about your wife in your international interview. 66 feet in 6 days, that's a lot of digging. Though they're digging up, but still... on behalf of my somewhat-asian ancestory, I'm going to take partial credit for this feat. Go team!

Also, just saw this article about the creator of the tv show 24. It's a badly-written, macho, bs tv show where the ends always justify the means, and apparently the creator thinks it's patriotic. His photograph with the article makes him appear only slightly more mature than if he were pictured showing off tattoos or flexing his biceps. I guess true patriotism is torturing someone for your country. Maybe next season they'll have an episode where Jack Bauer gets to torture like a dozen people at once. "I'm cutting a finger off each of you until someone tells me where the bomb is." And women, and maybe a kid! That sounds like some good drama. Is he justified in cutting fingers off a terrorist's child to coerce the father into talking? Even Jack Bauer might have to think twice about that. But of course he'd do it. It's his duty. (Provided it works and the father spills the beans about the atomic bomb that's about to go off, but he'll talk, don't worry.) We're in the business of saving lives here.

"I'm sorry, I don't listen to country music." -Joey DeMaio, when asked what he thinks of Metallica.

Monday, August 27, 2007

an ill weekend

I was going to write about illegal immigration here. But after 3 paragraphs I was still too scattered to make a coherent point and gave up. I'll write about that later. This weekend I've been sick. It hasn't been a really horrible sickness, the worst of the symptoms hit me between friday evening and sunday morning, so it only lasted for about a day and a half. Sadly, I missed Leslie's going away party. I kinda wanted to talk to her some before she left too, oh well. Now I just have a lingering slight cough, but I have to work 50 hours this week so I'm getting back to it tomorrow. It'll be a busy week. It's probably for the better that Kate's return is delayed.

Oh, I had dinner with Puja on Sunday. I'm feeling a little special about it too because we were going to get drinks friday night but I wasn't feeling well and cancelled, so we rescheduled for Sunday. Meanwhile, she also called up Rachel to hang out Friday but Rachel couldn't make it either, and Rachel didn't get rescheduled! Actually, I'm making a big thing out of nothing. It's only because Sunjeev was doing the coordinating and didn't feel comfortable calling Rachel. It was a pretty fun dinner. We got sushi and chinese food, talked a little about their upcoming wedding, life on the west coast, everyone's new jobs, and this and that. And we got sort of harassed by an incomprehensible homeless guy who was asking for change (I think). He seemed pretty drunk and he babbled on and on about who-knows-what when we didn't give him any money. I walked about a block from Chinatown towards my house before deciding it probably wasn't smart in my state of fragile health.

With my sick time I finally finished the Arrested Development series and started the new Harry Potter book. Arrested Development is a great show, but it's impossible to read or do any work while you watch it. The dialogue is just too quick, you miss everything unless you're paying attention. And the Harry Potter book is meh so far (I'm like 80 pages in).

Oh, check out this blurb I found on craigslist from an incredibly optimistic date rejectee.

(This was a while ago and a longer conversation than I usually like to quote, but I think it's pretty funny. Whitney doesn't catch my sarcasm at the end.)

(Whitney thinks leaving your phone with a girl is a good way to get a date)
Whitney: unless! you like the girl- then you can "accidentally" leave it in her bag- and then have to call her later!
me: sneaky, but how would i call her?
Whitney: ohh, you could go by her house!!!
Whitney: great plan!
Whitney: ohh, what a great plan!
me: ok, so i see a girl who i want to date, i somehow manage to steal her bag and put my cellphone in it without her knowing, how am i gonna find out where she lives?
Whitney: see, i know a lot more than you think!
me: sounds like a terrible plan
Whitney: NO, you have to talk to her first and ASK her to hold your phone.
Whitney: ask generic questions like, so, what area do you live in...blah blah blah...
Whitney: THEN..."forget" your phone.
me: hmmm, right
Whitney: see. see....
me: i don't ususally ask random girls to hold my phone, only friends. it'd be kinda weird asking some girl i've just met
Whitney: "hey, im sorry to bother you, but i left my phone in your bag- is there a time i could come get it or meet you somewhere?"
Whitney: ya, maybe a girl you know you like
me: sneak my way into a first date. that's a great way to start a relationship
Whitney: ya!
Whitney: a great way!
Whitney: guys are sneaky.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Craigslist selling Rule #1

I'm listening to the Fiddler on the Roof soundtrack while I do stuff. I forgot to mention in the last post that my oldest sister's new fiance, John, had the gall to show up to the Jewish wedding without having seen Fiddler on the Roof! Such blatent disrespect for these traditions! Practically an anti-semetic statement! I was aghast, luckily nobody else was around at the time to hear him say it.

Hmm. I had something else to write about. What was it... Oh, just sold some videogames on craigslist. From now on I'm not doing any deliveries for items being sold. You have to come pick it up, I'm not leaving my couch. I sold 2 games for $15, and then the guy wanted me to walk out to Dupont to meet him at the metro there! We had so much back and forth over the games that I felt sort of compelled to agree to meet him half way. It went from being a free $15 (I was never going to play those games again, they were boring) to being like 45 minutes of my evening wasted walking around dc! "Never again!" "Fool me once, shame on you-" You get the idea. It's interesting, I've noticed that people who sell/buy on craigslist are much more likely to be on facebook than random people. Maybe it's because craigslist is a college kids thing. The kid I sold the videogames to is a former gwu student (class of '07), and the girl I'm buying a mirror from tomorrow in Adams Morgan went to PSU on a gymnastics scholarship. So much stalker potential, if I only cared more. Stalking really is a matter of being passionate, something that I am not.

(talking about the movie Weird Science)
jschelllll: the brother being a jackass
jschelllll: kinda sounds like how you described your brother
Dan: my bro was a dick, hey paul can you buy us beer, next day, dan and his friends wanted me to buy them beer.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

tiring weekends

The summary of a weekend in California:

The night after arriving, I went with high school friend Dan to the Russian River Brewery in downtown Santa Rosa. It's a pretty new place and was supposed to be good. We had a hard time finding it because neither of us had been there and Dan's phone kept telling us to walk 0.0 miles up the street while none of the places in sight were what we wanted. I finally asked some lady who looked like she was about to pull mace out of her purse if I stepped too close. But her directions were good. Some really old guy sat next to Dan at the bar and would occasionally spew out incoherent words at us. I think the only thing I understood that he said was "Never accept responsibility." The poor guy was probably drinking his sorrows away. The bartender was refusing to serve him any more alcohol, and when he'd finished his drink the bartender came over and said "That's 27 dollars." Dan and I were expecting the old guy to just wander off without paying (which would have been entertaining, and I was planning on shouting at Dan "Yo, your grandfather is walking off!" just to see if the bartender would try to shake Dan down for the cash). But after bumbling around and muttering more incoherencies, the old guy pulled a $50 bill out of his wallet. It was a little disappointing. I was hoping for some excitment.

Justin's wedding dinner was fun, in a family sort of way. It was a buffet dinner and dance. I somewhat-awkwardly talked to a bunch of relatives. I answered "When did you get in?" (thursday) and "When do you leave?" (monday) probably 5 or 6 times each. But that's alright, that's how relational conversation works when everyone is sober. I was well on my way toward being drunk (there was an open bar, with some local light beer that was okay) when my sister asked me to be our driver at the end of the night. Her husband had drunk too much and she wasn't feeling well. So I stopped drinking beer. Still, it was a pretty fun time. Justin got the DJ to play his favorite band at the end of the night and he did a lot of energetic jumping around which was fun to see. Marget (Justin's new wife) seemed much more friendly than she did in New York last Thanksgiving. Maybe it was the zombie show she was forced to see there, or that she was meeting too many people for the first time. Anyway, I like her now, and she works for the same company as Rachel up by Dulles so I may be seeing her more often.

Mike and Maria's wedding was interesting and fun. Mike's Jewish, so there was a lot of talking in Hebrew, and they did that thing where the bride and groom got lifted in their chairs while everyone sang and ran around them. (The do it in a scene of the Wedding Crashers.) It was pretty crazy. I saw some people from the family camp we used to go to back in jr high and high school. Some of these girls who were so small 7-8 years ago are now like 20 years old. They're also much more enjoyable to talk to, though that might just be me being more polite and pleasant than I used to be. Fortunately, I'm not-quite creepy enough to try anything weird, which is more than I can say for my aunt's older brother, who works as a movie producer in Los Angeles and I suppose generally gets away with being weird. I finally met my oldest sister's fiance. Irene had been sneaking him around for months upon months as a not-serious relationship and then just randomly announced that they're engaged to be married some time this spring. He seems okay, but I didn't talk to him enough to be sure. He's sporting the soul patch, and I think it looks retarded, but whatever. I talked to my cousin Rachel for a while. She's a new college graduate and wants to be a writer of children's books so I grilled her about Roald Dahl books, Peter Pan, and Winnie the Pooh, on all of which I am an expert. Rachel was a good sport about it, she only threatened to punch me and never actually followed through.

I have some photos. But like all photos, that will have to wait until I have much more time. I'm so far behind in photos, I think I have like 200 to post from various events. Some day.

(we're sitting in the bar and Dan gets a text message)
me: What did Brittany say?
(he had dropped Brittany off at the airport a few hours earlier. Dan turns his phone so I can see the text: "Just got back. Had a great time. Love you and miss you.")
me: She really likes you.
Dan: Yeah. Check this out.
(he replies "Same.")

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Laundromats build character

Walking back from the laundromat this morning when someone driving by tried to ask me directions. I couldn't help him, but I'm surprised he even thought I would be able to. I was 10:30AM on a Wednesday, I'm walking down the street with a bag of laundry, unshaved and wearing an undershirt and shorts. Clearly I'm unemployed, don't own a car, and probably don't speak English.

On the other hand, it was a moderately pleasant experience at the laundromat. I was the only person there so I turned off the unbelievably annoying cartoons they put on the television. Kids' television has to be the most difficult thing to ignore. The characters have squeeky voices, are always asking the kids to jump up and down or shake or somehow participate, and occasionally break into non-rhyming songs! A wise investment for any parent hoping to avoid abusing kids would be a set of headphones for each child.

Today I'm working late. Tomorrow I have two 2-hour presentations, one on multi-threaded processor design and one on error correction in quantum computing. Should be interesting. Then I'm flying out to CA in the afternoon for a long weekend.

Shane: Don't see me yawning and yawn at the same time as me. That's gay.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Noelle's wedding

Noelle's wedding was fun. The weather is much nicer up by Boston, like in the mid-70's. Flying up we had some trouble. Dave, Eric and I all got the same flight, and it was delayed and then cancelled around midnight. Our flights got rescheduled until early the next morning but there were no hotels available in Baltimore (according to the airline rep anyway).

The airline rep wanted us to sleep in the airport but we definitely didn't want to do that.There was talk of calling up Baltimore girls and arranging a couch to sleep on, but Eric and Dave both thought it would be too awkward to call up ex-girlfriends. Then there was talk of going to a baltimore bar and trying to pick up girls to go home with. I don't think that was ever seriously considered. Dave's idea was "We can go to a bar and find some young ladies to take us home." And Eric suggested some beer bar, but Dave pointed out that the hotties probably wouldn't be hanging around a beer-nerd bar. Then Eric said "Yeah. So we can go to the good bar first, and then afterwards we'll go to the popular bar to pick up our skanks." It was funny how our theoretical hookups got reduced from being three hotties (with possibly one ugly girl that someone was going to have to take the fall for) to three skanks in about 30 seconds. We ended up getting a free cab back to Arlington, slept at Dave's place for a few hours, and then got a free cab back to BWI at 7am. We thought at first that they had lost our luggage on the cancelled flight (which would have been pretty funny), but it turned out they had just put it way off to the side.

We didn't have much time on Boston. Just enough for me to take a nap on Ben Ming's couch. Then we drove down to Worcester for the wedding. The wedding was nice. It was really warm in the church and in my suit, and the catholic service had a long, meandering sermon and communion included. The reception was pretty fun. Dave, Eric and I were at the same table as a couple of Noelle's coworkers and Ashley. The coworkers mostly talked to each other about work-stuff, and I think Ashley still doesn't really like me, though she seemed happier with her husband being there, and he was an alright guy. There was an open bar for most of the night, but I ate a bunch of food and ended up not being very drunk. There was an after-party in Bryan Hurley's hotel room. It was a little awkard. On the one hand, he had a whole lot of beer, and I felt like drinking. But on the other hand Rob's parents showed up, and everyone was significantly older than me, and they all knew each other well so I didn't have much to add to their reminiscing. So I drank quietly, kept to myself for the most part, and heard some stories that were much more graphic about Rob and Noelle's sex life than I ever wanted to hear.

The trip back was mostly uneventful. It always surprises me how long it takes to catch the shuttle from BWI to the metro. That thing comes like once an hour. Oh, they lost Dave's bag, which had one of my suits and one of eric's suits in it, but it's not a huge deal so long as they find it eventually. Dave gets a nice per-diem for his job so he can buy a new toothbrush and whatnot.

Next weekend I'm flying to California for another wedding, and to congradulate two cousins who got married last weekend but I couldn't make it to either. And I haven't gotten much done at work. I should quit that.

(at the wedding reception)
Dave: You know, I think I would be a good singer if I just sing low enough.
(Dave loosens his tie and starts singing along to the song in a super low voice. Eric and I both laugh because it sounds rediculous.)
Dave: Eric, you should let me in your band, I want to be in your band.
Eric: You can't be in the band.
Dave: Why not?
Eric: We're rag-tag enough as it is. Sawyko doesn't really have that much... He has enough to get along but...
Dave: Is he a singer?

Thursday, August 9, 2007

I want quarters! Obvi!

Today I bought a sandwich for lunch and the total came to $6.84. I handed over a $20, a dime, and 4 pennies from my pocket. Then the cashier-lady tried to give me back two quarters, two dimes and a nickel! I said "wait a minute, I just gave you 9 cents." Maybe that wasn't the right way to explain it because she said "I know... Here." And she tried to give me the change again. Then I said "Do you not have enough quarters?" She understood and gave me 3 quarters instead. Then she gave an irritated grunt as I collected my stuff and left. I guess I'm a touchy customer, making a lot of trouble over nothing. But I think I was justified. I had just given her a bunch of random change (including the dime she tried to return to me), I don't want even more change back! The whole point of putting some change in with the $20 is to receive less change in return! Unfortunately the counter between us was a little too wide to effectively reach across and smack her.

That's the only eventful thing about today so far. Though at least I'm done looking at stupid fax machine systems. That was a painful few days.

(At the mini-mart downstairs, when the checkout line gets long, they open up a cash register near the back of the line and start helping the last customers in that line. This happened to Amelia, and she got to pay before me despite me standing in line longer)
me: It's so unfair the way they do that! The last person in line suddenly gets to checkout first.
Amelia: Yeah.. It's like a first in last out.
me: Haha, yeah it is. That's a pretty nerdy reference.
Amelia: Well I figured you'd get it.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

hello world. New bloggage.

So this is the new blog. I'm not completely thrilled with the title, but whatever.

Among the rejected titles were,

from the top of my head:
        A Government Patsy
        Easily Irritated
        Patience is a Virtue
        Joe's Muselings
        Thinking Rationally
        Tales of a Pseudo-Engineer

from movies/books:
        Injun Joe
        4 Legs Good, 2 Legs Bad
        This Confession Has Meant Nothing (from American Psycho)
        Ho Activities with Joe Tendencies
        Joe Activities with Ho Tendencies
        A Jedi Shall Know Not Love
        Mind what you have learned - Save you it can
        Satisfaction is not Guaranteed (Rule of Acquisition #19)
        When in Doubt, Lie (Rule of Acquisition #266)
        Profit is its own Reward (Rule of Acquisition #41)
        I'm not a little girl- I'm a bionic woman (from Freaks and Geeks)
        Like My Heart is Getting Hard (from Arrested Development)

We'll see how often this gets updated. Usually I like to end with a quote, but tonight I've got nothing.