Yay, Friday. I wonder if we'll get pizza for lunch.

So, the weekend. I think I've got nothing on, which is a very good thing, because I don't think Anna has anything on either, apart from work. Which means we may get to spend the whole weekend together. And that just rules.

I don't think we've got band practise tomorrow... Rob has been in hospital for his ear, and can't stress it with loud music, but we may have been having a quiet one at Michael's. It's a bit late to organise it now though, and I think I'd prefer we didn't. I'd rather be able to sleep in tomorrow with the one I love. Of course.

Plus, I'm feeling a bit down with the band at the moment. Rob and Michael don't seem to want to play anything but Tool and A Perfect Circle, Kris is often busy and can't make it to band practise, and Jay still hasn't got any singing lessons... I mean, I'm sure I'm not totally dedicated to it either, and singing lessons would help me too, but I think I'm holding my own.

But, I get sick of Maynard, and trying to sing like him. Sometimes I can, often I can't, I'm not that good yet. And I can't get into that music, I need something that's going to get my adrenaline pumping and just let me totally let go. I wish they could learn some Slipknot or Machine Head or something. But of course, they all use five string basses or seven string guitars or something, there's always some excuse.

I'm probably being unfair, I can't expect them to buy new equipment just so they can play songs I like, but still. I'm sure there are ways to get around it for at least some of the songs.

But I refuse to learn entire Tool and APC albums, as Michael suggested the other day. We need some variety.

Ah well, I'm sure my mood will change, it usually does... I go through phases of being totally optimistic about the band, we've got some possible gigs coming up, and I think about how great it'll be if we go well in front of these people, even if it's only just friends and family.

But then I get annoyed that we're stuck on doing all these songs I can't really get into, my voice isn't working the way I want it to, nobody else seems to be putting in the effort... bah. I don't have any aspirations of being famous or anything, I don't think I'd want that, but I'd like to get out of the garage, so to speak.

I wonder if I should look for another band, next year, one that might be interested in doing songs more to my liking. It's hard being in a band where pretty much all the members have different tastes. And I'm not very confrontational, so it's hard to convince them to play likeable songs. But yeh. I don't know. It's hard when they're all friends, as well.

Heh, perhaps I should learn guitar and become a solo artist. Pity I don't have the patience to learn any instrument.

And now, to lunch.




Damn, no pizza. Ah well, cheese rolls again.

back to Dreams of October 16, 2001 | on to ???

So I woke up early this morning. Like 8:15. I had a big day. So I got dressed in my red pants and sparkly scarf and took the bus to class because I was too lazy to walk. I got an A on my anthropology paper hooray! I guess this somehow justifies why I didn't go to lecture today? Then I went and had the best mocha Ive ever had at a campus cafe and studied anthropology until I got bored. Then I laid on a bench in the sun because its a beautiful clear blue sky day today!

Eeek then I went to math class. I was planning to talk to "piggy" today. He wasn't there, and class was starting so I got really pissed off and sad. He was messing up my plans! But he slipped into his normal seat so I was thrilled. And Caroline, one of my friends here, thought that he was checking me out. I was really jittery and nervous and I couldnt concentrate the entire time. Caroline said that she would disown me for the whole weekend if I didnt talk to him, so I followed him out of class and said hi to him! I introduced myself and asked him if he wanted to study sometime together or whatever. He said yes! And I asked him for his number and he even asked for mine. We were supposed to hang out tonight to do math homework. Hes a sophomore and lives in an apartment, and his name is Alex. Im still gonna call him piggy though. Hes so cute....

Then I rushed home and I was so happy that I made my roommate Dana a sandwich and wrote her a happy email. I wanted her to be as happy as me. And I got a letter from Laurel, an old but missed ex-best friend, and she said she still wanted to be friends with me! This is even a bigger deal than the guy thing, because friends before guys always! Ive been crawling back to her for a year and then when I finally try to give up she responds. Figures, but I hope we can even work out stuff.

So I was ecstatically happy for most of the day, but what goes up must come down. I called Alex and he said that he had a chemistry quiz early in the morning and he didn't know any of the math because he hadn't had time to look over it. He asked me if I normally did the homework on thursday, and I said no but I didn't have time because my friends were coming to visit me this whole weekend. So I guess we couldn't do homework tonight, but he said we could work something out for next week. A whole week I have to wait! Grrr....I was so looking forward to this. I hope he wasn't just being nice. Figures, figures, figures!

Oh well, I'm still proud of myself for talking to him anyway.

Ahhhhhhhh.

If any of you read my last daylog, you might remember that your humble narrator had a terrible day. The outlook aws not looking good. Rainy, lots of work ahead, nothing real fun...my oh how that changed....

This week was actually the most productive week I have had in a long time. Lemme give you a list of all the things that had to be done this week:

  • Write a paper on supersition and their relevancy in the modern world for my english class at community college. That was due on Tuesday
  • Write a paper on James K. Polk for my American Government class in High School. That was due today.
  • Write a paper on slavery in the United States for my sociology class at community college. That was also due today.
  • Get senior pictures taken. That was on Thursday.
  • Write a PHP application which calculated billed time versus estimated time for work. That was accomplished on Wendsday.
  • Study Physics as to not fail the test. Test was on Wendsday.
Everything was accomplished. The even better part was that each time I accomplished one of my tasks, I felt a hell of alot better about my ability to do the next task on my list.

(If you're wondering why I have assignments due for both community college and high school, it's because my high school offers a dual enrollment program. With this program, I get to leave halfway into the day, then take classes at community college for both college and high school credit. Also, because I am within the top 10% of my class, the county pays all fees (besides books) for the community college classes. Pretty nifty, huh?)

Another plus: on Wendsday I came home from school to find that I had an airmail package from London. Upon opening, I found that the new Aphex Twin album, drukqs had arrived! I was shocked at the speed of mail, especially since it's coming from another country, and what with the anthrax scares and all... The double CD is so yummy...not to mention the fact that I got it five days before it hits store shelves. Since I pre-ordered it directly from Warp Records, it came with some bonuses. It came with two stickers, one that read "drukqs", and another that read "come on you cunt, let's have some Aphex acid". It also came with postcard-sized pictures that were from the same photo shoot as the cover and booklet art on the CD. It's the little things that count...

My supersition paper was whipped up in a couple hours the day before I had to turn it in. Surprisingly, it was halfway decent. Not that it matters much; community college is like high school with ashtrays, you get the same low-standard of education with a higher student age.

My James K. Polk paper kicked major boo-tay. Judging from everyone else in my class (who bitch and moan at the thought of doing *gasp* work...), it'll be an A project. And as a special added bonus, I get to play the They Might Be Giants song James K. Polk as part of my presentation on Monday. Thursday, before getting to work on the finishing touches to the paper, I took the opportunity to make a w/u of my paper. (an E2-related aside: I spent alot of time with creative pipelinking, and it irks me that people don't seem to notice...arg...oh well, such is E2.)

Sociology paper I whipped up after the James K. Polk report was done. When you're on a roll with writing papers, it really takes no time at all to throw one together...

Senior pictures went great. The photographer is my friend's uncle, so it made me pretty comfortable despite the fact that I was posed in weird ways most of the time. I'm excited to see the proofs, which will be ready on Monday. The pictures that were taken in my fencing gear sound like they turned out the best...here's hoping...

The PHP application was half written when I started, but after looking at it, I decided it was easier to just scrap the whole thing and re-write it. I re-wrote it in a much better way than it was originally done. After I finished it, I realized that I needed to implement pretty much the same functionality in a separate application. Because of how I re-wrote the code, I was able to cut and paste it right in and it worked like a charm. That's when you know you coded something the right way...

I studied physics. Alot. Obviously moreso than my classmates. Everyone else in my class was really struggling by the end of the test...and I was breezing along. There were a couple problems that were toughies, but I got into such a good mindset that I actually enjoyed figuring out the problems. I really hate it when math can be fun; it just sucks all of the fun out of hating it.

Whoowee. What a week. The best part is, I feel spectacular and the weekend hasn't even started yet!

Today was a good day, even with just three hours of sleep. And what do I have to show for it? Next time, if I am going to be up at that hour of the morning, I am at least going to get some decent nodes done. Heck, if I am going to feel (physically) tired all day, I may as well have some good to show for it.

Am trying to figure out what has happened to the used book market. After 11 September, there was the decline in sales that one might expect – this was not a surprise. But I had still been selling enough books that I continued buying and listing on ebay. Then, the sales I had ending Tuesday, nothing. Sold the seven cheapest books out of a group of 25. No bids on the others. Nothing at all. The opening bids were fair, well below market value, on a lot of really nice, really hard to find books, and still nothing. This is weird. Sigh. Looked at other book dealers on ebay, and the situation is about the same. Books that might normally go for $6000-8000 closing at $1200. Must be a great time to be a buyer.

Sold a few books today, one on campus to a professor, Dr. Andrews, who is such a bibliomaniac – probably even worse than me. Also some fine bindings to a guy in Texas that I have dealt with before. Made a tiny bit of money – broke even, which was pretty much the intent. Just needed to convince myself that this stuff could be sold. And I needed the money, too.

Received a nice German woodcut print, done in 1552. Bought it on ebay a few days ago. Not the crisp, stunning masterpiece I had dreamed of, but exactly like the picture in the auction, and still very nice.

Went to class, too. Learned today that 20 minutes of everything, in addition to the usual coffee, does wonders to help wake a person up. Had a test in Urban Economics and Politics. Can’t wait to get my good fountain pen back from Rotring. Sigh. I miss it. And writing tests and things where I have to write on paper is so much more difficult. In the future I will be a lot more careful about leaving it open on my desk, even for a moment.

Spent a bit of time talking with A. today. Gosh does she like me. Problem is, I am not sure if I like her. Physically, the attraction is very strong, for both of us. (Or so it seems. I think so. And I think a reasonable person would say, based on the way she has been acting, that she feels the same. But I am not sure. Not sure if she is just expressing her emotional desire for me in a physical way. Dammit, I need to just talk to her. Without her roommate there. Must do this tomorrow. )

Emotionally, I am just not sure if there is anything there. I like her, and I want this to be something. To the extent that I know A., I like her. But she does not know me so well (I don’t think so… who knows what she may have been told…), and I just wonder what she might think if she knew me better. I am not going to change (much, and not out of malice or lack of caring, but out of the general impossibility of it, and my previous track record. Oh wait… I don’t want to make this into something with the promise of being long term, for her, before I have that figured out. She has been hurt by people before, she has made me aware of this, and has made it clear that she would raise hell if it happened again. (Just as she did before.) I don’t want to do this. Not because of fear, but just because it would be wrong.

We differ quite a bit on political views and preferred means of expression. (Read: She sees something happening that she doesn’t like, and like most people, does nothing. I see something I don’t like happening, I raise hell. I write letters, attend protests, talk with people, distribute leaflets, etc.) There is no inherent problem with this – she her opinion, I have mine, fine. What bothers me is that she has made it clear that she does not think it is right to protest and raise so much of a fuss. Ok. She can think that. I just need to make it clear, from the start, that I am not going to change on these most important of things. It’s who I am.

I am who I am. I am ok with that. And she should be ok with that, and probably is to the extent that she knows me. But there is also something in me, for some reason, that tells me that if I don’t provide every little bit of information that might matter to her before I ask her out, that if something goes wrong it is my fault. (Yes, I realize how ridiculous this looks. Didn’t stop me from thinking it. And seeing it in writing doesn’t stop me from thinking it. Sigh.)

A. is nice. And I do want her. But I also don’t want to screw things up too badly.

I guess this means that I need to learn to talk.

Oh my. It has been a long time since I have dated anyone. (And does it show.) None of the above, about A. or me, is a factual representation, by itself. But as a whole, they paint a reasonably accurate picture of things as they are. Or, in a nutshell: I like her, I want her, I am not perfect. I am afraid she may realize this, what do I do?

I've got a little unfocused hostility today, but no wonder: it's my birthday.1 I am 312 years old3 today. As a present to myself, I plan to enjoy the beautiful autumn day here in New Hampshire, USA.4
ENDNOTES (and don't say you weren't warned!)

1 But don't give me any goddamned birthday votes. If you want to upvote or downvote me on the merits, that works. If you want to dump random votes here for that fat XP bonus then, hey, knock yourself out. I just want it to be perfectly clear that I'm no whore, at least not when it comes to XP...alright, maybe I'm a little bit of a whore, but at least I try to be a high-class one.

2 That's right, laugh it up. Fat old man, that's me. I may have substantial back pain, the beginnings of hypertension, and a few pounds (divide that by about 2.2 for kilos, if you're one of them there metric freaks) I'd rather do without, but this much is true: I may be old, but I'm still a pretty big guy and I could probably kick your ass. So stop all your goddamned snickering about what an old fart I am or I might have to come over there and do something about it.

3 Yeah, that's right, old. This means that--dare I say it?--I'm sick to death of reading all these nodes about what a drag it is to be a kid today because (choose all that apply):

  1. I'm oh-so-smart and this is all a waste of my precious time
  2. People keep calling me a nerd or a geek or whatever the hell they call you these days
  3. The girl/boy of my dreams ignores me/hates me/is of a different sexual persuasion.

I mean come on! hey, if writing about these things is your therapy, get a notebook: don't come whining to me when I downvote your aimless ramblings (Lord knows plenty of people have mercifully downvoted mine). But more than that: get over yourself. If there's one thing I've learned in my time (and I should point out that all three of the items above, especially 2, applied to me once upon a time), and it may only be this one thing, it's that you're only as miserable as you let yourself be. Someone's calling you names: say the words (if only to yourself) bite me and you will feel better. Girl trouble? Move the hell on. Too smart? You're probably much stupider than you think, and in ten years you'll become convinced of truth of this point.

4 And that's another thing: I'm sick to death of reading all these terrible nodes about how America sucks. I don't mind if you hold this opinion, I don't even mind if you write about it. But the thing that gets me is that so many of these things are rants, rambles, or replies to an inflammatory node title such as "We RULEZ you, motherf*ckers!" Let me give you a piece of my hard earned sage wisdom: when writing, try to write well. Convince me and maybe I'll vote for you. Tell me that Denmark is morally superior because of evil American capitalists are colonizing the world and using McDonald's as a front and I'll downvote your ass. And a random tip to European noders: you may have your reasons for disliking America, and they may be good ones (tell me about them in a way that is intellectually compelling), but don't think your shit don't stink. For the most part, Americans think the same things about you. Especially about the French, whom they consider to be, to use Groundskeeper Willie's phrase, cheese-eating surrender monkeys. I actually like the French. I find their attitude endearing.

But this is another point altogether. Here's the real point: the noders that are high in the ol' levels are generally there for a reason, or a combination of several: they write well and insightfully about a range of interesting topics. That's the stuff I want to read. But a large proportion of what flows through the new writeups nodelet seems to be, how shall I say this?, crap. Don't misunderstand, I write a lot of said crap myself, but at least I ask for it to be nuked when I come to my senses. I actually take it as a good thing when I log in and see that the editors have caused the writeupstoday stat to leap into negative territory. Don't whine about it: learn from it.


And so ends my own rant for the day. It's always nice when you can focus your hostility. That's the E2 birthday present I give myself today: for today, at least, I will let out all the crotchetiness that gets built up inside when you get to be my age. Tomorrow I promise to return to being the quiet E2 citizen I have long endeavored to be.

Well, maybe tomorrow I'll take a nap instead.

Quote of the Day:

The whole problem can be stated quite simply by asking, 'Is there a meaning to music?' My answer would be, 'Yes.' And 'Can you state in so many words what the meaning is?' My answer to that would be, 'No.'- Aaron Copland

Sounds kind of like E2 itself.

News and Views:

  • The number of reported Anthrax cases continues to rise.

    Personally, I can think of few better ways to nearly immobilize the United States than to make citizens fearful of handling their mail. (I don't know about you, but every Christmas I receive at least one card from someone who I don't recognize.)

  • Numerous businesses and industries continue to announce layoffs because of the 'slumping economy caused by the terrorist threat'.

    Has the economy really fallen that far, that fast? The overall tone especially seems odd since the biggest consumer orgy of the year, Christmas, is just around the corner.

  • Several groups around the US are protesting the use of Harry Potter by Coke as an advertising symbol.

    It's a sad sign of our culture when a beloved icon becomes a pitchman overnight because of the greed of the author and publishers.

Not all daylogs are created equal.

Daylogs can be so much more than simply personal journals, they can also provide a unique chronological record of the world. That's not to say the journals are not valuable and unique, they are, but that this format can be used for so much more.

This place needs more actual content, let's begin.

Quote of the Day:

"The Taliban are, in a way, the same as the hyper-Orthodox Jewish sects which stone passers-by on Shabbat; the main difference appears to be the degree to which the men of each fear their women." -A Rabbi I know

News of the Day:

  • The dot-conomy in the Northeast U.S.continues to worsen, with Lucent and other companies warning of yet more layoffs. In a potentially more ominous trend, used computer prices on eBay are plummeting as sellers realize that folks just aren't buying.

  • U.S. and allied forces continued bombing Afghanistan; reports have surfaced in the past couple of days that the U.S. had undertaken the first use of a UCAV in actual combat. Modified RQ-1A Predator aircraft have been retrofitted with Hellfire missiles, which (according to U.S. DoD briefers) have been fired in anger at targets in the field.

Not all Daylogs are created equal.

This place needs more content. Let's begin.
Ugh, Saturday morning and I'm awake with a hangover. Finished work at 17:00 yesterday and took a taxi into Civic to meet some ISOC-AU folks at P. J. O'Reilly's for an end-of-week drink. Bloody noisy and smokey, that pub. I had three or four halves of fine Cascade Pale Ale, when Gemma joined us. I was so proud to introduce her to my geeky friends as "a Unix user" (hehe, she's upgraded her little iBook to Mac OS X lately). Geeks left, we stayed for more beer, then retired to our local, Filthy McFadden's in Kingston, where we had another couple. Hrm. At this point it seemed like the best idea in the world to pick up two bottles of wine and four new-release DVDs...



The coffee tastes goooood. Black Illy espresso from my stove-top Atomic...



Today we vote in the world's first electronic election, here for the state legislature (well, we aren't actually a state, rather a territory, and to be honest I don't really understand the difference -- Canberrans are fiercely proud of their Australian Capital Territory). The election is being run as a parallel electronic and paper poll, with all of the electronic code running as open source on Debian Linux. Gemma has just gone out to get The Canberra Times so we can plan our voting (we use the complex but exceedingly modern and fair Hare Clark system, but in my current pained state that is best left for another wup. Think I'll take some photos of us voting electronically today, seems like a good event to record. Wonder if we can C! an extra-good candidate...



Oh cool, I just remembered. I got a new phone, finally. I've been carrying around this sorry excuse for a modern cellphone, a Motorola Piece of Crap, for 10 months now. I have never hated an item of personal electronics quite as viciously as I hated that phone. So I finally gave in and swapped it for a sleek new Ericsson T29s which is a joy to have. The interface has matured so well since my last Ericsson, I'm amazed. It's a little flippy thing, sort of silvery, with deep purple features. It has five games (Tetris, a Qix clone, and three other things I don't really like). I couldn't help it while I was shopping, so I also got a DECT Ericsson wireless phone for home too (It was on special, honey, honest!), which is also extremely cool. Today I must punch all our Rolodex numbers into it's memory and retire the dead-tree format household number listing.

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