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:: 2010 3 June :: 12.05 pm
:: Music: Gorillaz - Stylo

Dear Jim
Dear Jim [Gaffigan]:
I had a weird dream last night where I went on a killing spree, murdering all of my ex-college roommates (I had a lot of them apparently), and for some reason Elvis Costello was fingered for the crime. I sat in the courtroom and watched him get a life sentence, and then he turned to me and smiled and starting singing, "Alison, I know this world is killing you." And the really bizarre part is, my name isn't Alison. What could this dream mean?
- Norah, Lancaster PA

Dear Norah:
Wait--the "bizarre part" was that your name isn't Alison? Really, THAT was the bizarre part? Not the murder spree or your letting a great musician take the heat? Just your name? Lady, you're a nut bag. Stop watching Law & Order before bed.
- Jim

Excerpt from "You're a Horrible Person, But I Like You: The Believer Book of Advice":
Amazon Page

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:: 2010 10 May :: 1.23 am

Fringe - A Show on the Rise
So, I have a question for you fellow TV viewers out there: When did Fringe all of a sudden get so good??

I've been watching this show since the beginning, and despite the fact I immediately saw it for what it was (a 'X-Files' ripoff), it didn't stop me from making it a part of my regular viewing rotation for the past couple of years. While I've always enjoyed (most of) the characters and its escapist/sci-fi tones, I always felt it was vastly inconsistent. Well, that's not entirely true... it was consistent in its inconsistency. The mythology episodes were usually good-to-great, while the stand-alone episodes were usually boring-to-silly. But something's happened since it came back from hiatus. To start, even the one-offs have been captivating, with the time-traveling episode guest starring Peter Weller (aka RoboCop) the most noteworthy example. But, more importantly, I think the showrunners are finally letting the characters and the storyline find their own voice. Yes, they are still ripping off 'The X-Files' (even going so far as cribbing the "I Want to Believe" tagline in last week's episode), but for once, I'm able to see past the similarities because I find myself totally engaged in the stories on their own merits and not as a derivative of another show. To wit, last week's twist evoked an audible reaction from me usually reserved only for my most "hardcore" shows. (As a side note to complete the 'X-Files' comparison, they have even managed to do something the veritable FOX show couldn't, making local law enforcement characters richly detailed with their own angles and motivations. Hell, it's even picking up at the same time 'The X-Files' did: late second season.)

More than anything, the one facet of this show that has kept me coming back through its ups and downs (and is all the more richer now that the rest of the show has caught up) is Walter Bishop. Make no mistake, John Noble's character is the best, most complete, and engaging currently on television (and yes, I'm including 'LOST' in that discussion). There's no other character I can think of--on any medium--that can have me laughing out loud one moment, pulling on my heartstrings the next, than back to guffaws, all within the space of a single scene, as the supermarket scene in last week's "Northwest Passage" did (see link below). Noble's performance is absolutely gripping, and the range and nuance he brings to the already juicy lines reminds me of how criminal it is that this man has not even yet been nominated, let alone won, for this role yet. (Seriously Hollywood, get on this!)

If you haven't seen the show or previously gave up on it, now's the time to give it a(nother) chance. As sad as I am to know that my favorite Leonard Nimoy won't be making any appearances past this season, I can't wait to see where they take it from here.

"Delicious Strawberry-Flavored Death!":

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:: 2010 5 March :: 1.52 pm
:: Music: The White Stripes - Little Cream Soda

Well every highway that I go down
Seems to be longer than the last one that I knew about
Oh well

And every girl that I walk around
Seems to be more of an illusion than the last one I found
Oh well

And this old man in front of me wearing canes and ruby rings
And it's like a dang explosion when he sings

And with every chance to set himself on fire,
He just ends up doin' the same thing

Well, each beautiful thing I come across
Tells me to stop moving and shake this riddle off
Oh well

And there was a time when all I wanted
Was my ice cream colder and a little cream soda
Oh well, oh well

And a wooden box and an alley full of rocks
Was all I had to care about
Oh well, oh well, oh well

Now my mind is filled with rubber tires and forest fires
And whether I'm a liar
And lots of other situations
Where I don't know what to do
At which time God screams to me
There's nothing left for me to tell you
Nothing left for me to tell you
Nothing left
Oh well, oh well, oh well, oh well
Oh well, oh well, oh well, oh well

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:: 2009 29 December :: 4.13 pm

Top 50 Films of the 2000s
1. Munich (2005)
2. Lost In Translation (2003)
3. Children of Men (2006)
4. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
5. The Royal Tenenbaums (2001)
6. Memento (2000)
7. Minority Report (2002)
8. There Will Be Blood (2007)
9. The Dark Knight (2008)
10. Kill Bill, Volume 1 (2003)
11. Monsters, Inc. (2001)
12. Moulin Rouge (2001)
13. American Psycho (2000)
14. Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)
15. Adaptation (2002)
16. The Hours (2002)
17. Punch-Drunk Love (2002)
18. Amelie (2001)
19. The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou (2004)
20. The Departed (2006)
21. The Incredibles (2004)
22. The Prestige (2006)
23. Shaun of the Dead (2004)
24. Gladiator (2000)
25. Vanilla Sky (2001)
26. The Lives of Others (2006)
27. I Heart Huckabees (2004)
28. 25th Hour (2002)
29. Volver (2006)
30. Bowling For Columbine (2002)
31. Collateral (2004)
32. Ratatouille (2007)
33. Juno (2007)
34. The 40-Year-Old Virgin (2005)
35. Mystic River (2003)
36. Donnie Darko (2001)
37. 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days (2007)
38. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse Of The Black Pearl (2003)
39. Closer (2004)
40. Walk The Line (2005)
41. The Bourne Identity (2002)
42. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)
43. The King of Kong (2007)
44. Star Trek (2009)
45. The Wrestler (2008)
46. Once (2006)
47. Good Night, and Good Luck (2005)
48. Away We Go (2009)
49. A History of Violence (2005)
50. Little Miss Sunshine (2006)

# of films, by year
8 (2002, 2004); 7 (2006); 6 (2001); 5 (2005, 2007); 4 (2003); 3 (2000); 2 (2008, 2009)

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:: 2009 24 December :: 2.16 pm

Best of 2009
Top CDs
1. Regina Spektor - Far
2. Phoenix - Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
3. The Decemberists - Hazards of Love
4. Silversun Pickups - Swoon
5. Pearl Jam - Backspacer
6. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - It's Blitz!
7. Eels - Hombre Lobo: 12 Songs of Desire
8. A Fine Frenzy - Bomb in a Birdcage
9. David Gray - Draw the Line
10. Moby - Wait for Me

Top Movies
work in progress
1. Away We Go
2. Star Trek
3. Sherlock Holmes
4. Avatar
5. Where the Wild Things Are
6. The Informant!
7. The Men Who Stare at Goats
8. Watchmen
9. Public Enemies
10. Angels & Demons

Top Video Games
played, not necessarily released, in 2009
1. Bioshock
2. Batman: Arkham Asylum (2009)
3. Uncharted: Drake's Fortune
4. NCAA Football '10 (2009)
5. Half-Life 2
6. Rock Band 2
7. House of the Dead: Overkill (2009)
8. Uncharted 2: Among Thieves (2009)
9. Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe
10. Silent Hill: Homecoming

Top Books
read, not necessarily released, in 2009
1. Nick Hornby - Juliet, Naked (2009)
2. Alan Moore & Dave Gibbons - The Watchmen
3. Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
4. Mark Blake - Comfortably Numb: The Inside Story of Pink Floyd
5. Flannery O'Connor - Everything that Rises Must Converge
6. Dave Eggers - Zeitoun (2009)
7. Brian Vaughan & Pia Guerra - Y: The Last Man
8. Patrick McGilligan - Alfred Hitchcock: A Life in Darkness & Light
9. Michael Kane - Game Boys
10. Mark Oliver Everett - Things the Grandchildren Should Know

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:: 2009 29 August :: 1.43 pm

Flight of the Conchords
Dave: "So you're just gonna elope. Just leave the city and leave the band?"

Jermaine: "Yeah. I'm going to New Jersey."

Dave: "Wow. New Jersey, huh? I'd love to go there, but I got a lot of shit going on in the States right now."

Jermaine: "Bye, Dave."

Dave: "Don't drink the water!"

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:: 2009 20 June :: 4.50 pm

40) Kaiser Chiefs - Never Miss A Beat
39) Snow Patrol - Take Back The City
38) My Morning Jacket - Two Halves
37) Flight of the Conchords - Think About It
36) The National - Brainy
35) Robert Plant & Alison Krauss - Please Read The Letter
34) Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Heads Will Roll
33) The Decemberists - Valerie Plame
32) David Byrne & Brian Eno - My Big Nurse
31) Nine Inch Nails - Discipline
30) The National - Fake Empire
29) TV On The Radio - Family Tree
28) The Hold Steady - Constructive Summer
27) Snow Patrol - Crack The Shutters
26) Coldplay - Viva La Vida
25) Vampire Weekend - Mansard Roof
24) Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Zero
23) Augustana - I Still Ain't Over You
22) The Hold Steady - Sequestered In Memphis
21) Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds - More News From Nowhere
20) Death Cab for Cutie - Bixby Canyon Bridge
19) Green Day - Know Your Enemy
18) M.I.A. - Paper Planes
17) Snow Patrol - Please Just Take These Photos From My Hands
16) Jenny Lewis - Acid Tongue
15) My Morning Jacket - I'm Amazed
14) TV On The Radio - Golden Age
13) Fleet Foxes - White Winter Hymnal
12/11) The Decemberists - The Wanting Comes In Waves / Repaid / The Rake's Song
10) Augustana - Sweet & Low
9) Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds - Jesus of the Moon
8) Jim James & Calexico - Goin' To Acapulco
7) Regina Spektor - Us
6) The Hold Steady - Stay Positive
5) TV On The Radio - Dancing Choose
4) We Are Scientists - After Hours
3) My Morning Jacket - Evil Urges
2) Jenny Lewis - Next Messiah
1) Vampire Weekend - A-Punk

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:: 2009 6 April :: 9.11 pm

Live Spartan Blogging
[9:01pm] New music from Green Day is a good way to start things off! I'm finding myself hopping around the apartment for no particular reason. I think I'm excited.

[9:05pm] There's a lot of friends on Facebook tonight. Lot of them rooting for the Spartans.

[9:10pm] Roy Williams says "Everybody" when asked who needs to step up for him tonight. At least he knows what he's up against. :-)

[9:13pm] Can I say, once again, that Tyler Hansborough is a gump.

[9:20pm] Holy crap, that's a lot of people (in green).

[9:25pm] Michelle: "Look at that guy. You should blog that Tyler Hansborough is a twat." Me: "Already did."

[9:49pm] Grr... Hit a shot, will ya!!

[10:01pm] That's a cheap shot, Green. Dude's nose is already broken...

[Editor's note] Shortly after this, his team already down double digits, Jason ditched the live-blogging and drowned his sorrows in a couple hours worth of Peggle (that game is hella addictive, yo). He is nonetheless very proud of his Spartans and glad that they got to play (and win) a Final Four game in Detroit. Go State!

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:: 2009 23 March :: 7.12 pm

Random Thoughts of the Day
1) Ring pops are way too much fun.

2) Quizno's new Ciabatta sandwiches, called 'Torpedos,' are insanely delicious. And the associated marketing campaign is '2001'-inspired awesomeness:

3) The Dharma Initiative is in no way similar to Jonestown. Suggesting otherwise is ridiculous and inane.

4) If you ever find yourself having to get off an SSRI (or similar drug), either out of a deliberate decision or pure laziness, please, please, please ween yourself off as you're supposed to do. Serotonin withdrawal is not a laughing matter.

5) I have a strong desire to get (back?) into vinyl after reading this article: Not very portable though, I suppose.

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:: 2009 19 March :: 9.00 pm
:: Music: The Shins - Split Needles (again?!)

The Big Dance - Day 1
michelle picked U-M to LOSE... you need to let her have it!!

imma slap dat ho


my bracket makes me want to vomit

i didn't know you had such a high opinion of [Michigan State], considering EVERYTHING you've said to me this year :-)

what did i say?

about how much you hate state

oh yes i hate them
but i hate germs too but if i got a bad one i would still pick it to kill me

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:: 2009 17 March :: 1.48 pm

VALIS quotes
From Philip K. Dick's novel:

"In his study of the form that masochism takes in modern man, Theodor Reik puts forth an interesting view. Masochism is more widespread than we realize because it takes an attenuated form. The basic dynamism is as follows: a human being sees something bad which is coming as inevitable. There is no way he can halt the process; he is helpless. This sense of helplessness generates a need to gain some control over the impending pain--any kind of control will do. This makes sense; the subjective feeling of helplessness is more painful than the impending misery. So the person seizes control over the situation in the only way open to him: he connives to bring on the impending misery; he hastens it. This activity on his part promotes the false impression that he enjoys pain. Not so. It is simply that he cannot any longer endure the helplessness or the supposed helplessness. But in the process of gaining control over the inevitable misery he becomes, automatically, anhedonic (which means being unable or unwilling to enjoy pleasure). Anhedonia sets in stealthily. Over the years it takes control of him. For example, he learns to defer gratification; this is a step in the dismal process of adhedonia. In learning to defer gratification he experiences a sense of self-mastery; he has become stoic, disciplined; he does not give way to impulse. He has control. Control over himself in terms of his impulses and control over the external situation. He is a controlled and controlling person. Pretty soon he has branched out and is controlling other people, as part of the situation. He becomes a manipulator. Of course, he is not consciously aware of this; all he intends to do is lessen his own sense of impotence. But in his task of lessening this sense, he insidiously overpowers the freedom of others. Yet, he derives no pleasure from this, no positive psychological gain; all his gains are essentially negative."

"If you'll remember, helping people was one of the two basic things Fat has been told long ago to give up; helping people and taking dope. He had stopped taking dope, but all his energy and enthusiasm were now totally channeled into saving people. Better he had kept on with the dope."

"We are in a maze, here, which we built and then fell into and can't get out. In essence, VALIS selectively fires information to us which aids in escaping from the maze, in finding the way out... We were great builders, but one day we decided to play a game. We did it voluntarily; were we such good builders that we could build a maze with a way out but which constantly changed so that, despite the way out, in effect there was no way out for us because the maze--this world--was alive? To make the game into something real, into something more than an intellectual exercise, we elected to lose our exceptional faculties, to reduce us an entire level. This, unfortunately, included loss of memory--loss of knowledge of our true origins. But worse than that--and here is where we in a sense managed to defeat ourselves, to turn victory over to our servant, over to the maze we had built..."

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:: 2009 9 March :: 4.42 pm
:: Music: matt pond PA - Giving It All Away

giving it all away tonight/'cause I haven't been that good at being quiet
So evidently I have two modes...

1) Constantly finding new things to read/study/watch/listen to/play. This results in excesses of above interests.
2) Moody enough that none of the above sound good to me. Certain thresholds of moodiness result in desires to clean out said excesses and focus only on the things that really grab me.

#1 makes me wish I didn't have to sleep. #2 sends me to bed early.

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:: 2009 5 March :: 3.49 pm
:: Mood: confused
:: Music: Lost - '316'

BEN: Thomas the Apostle. When Jesus wanted to return to Judea, knowing that he would probably be murdered there, Thomas said to the others, "Let us also go, that we might die with him." But Thomas was not remembered for this bravery. His claim to fame came later... when he refused to acknowledge the resurrection. He just couldn't wrap his mind around it. The story goes... that he needed to touch Jesus' wounds to be convinced.

JACK: So was he?

BEN: Of course he was. We're all convinced sooner or later, Jack.

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:: 2009 3 March :: 7.31 pm
:: Mood: ok, maybe not so much...

Fleet Foxes - White Winter Hymnal
My latest "find." Something warm to keep you fuzzy while you battle through the cold outside.

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:: 2009 3 March :: 7.14 pm
:: Mood: still sober
:: Music: The Shins - Split Needles

oh won't you do me the favor man/of forgiving my poly-morphing opinion here
Amidst all the stress of attempting to schedule (and re-schedule) my oral examination ("it's kind of a big deal 'round here"), one piece of good news surfaced today... we may actually have a faculty member with some experience in gambling research starting this fall. It doesn't appear it's a major research interest of his going forward (he's into stimulus equivalence right now), but I heard a rumor that he's open to doing some research if student(s) are interested. Not sure how far it'll go, but at the very least I'll probably end up with a new committee member.

I got some flashes today of enthusiasm for what's going to happen in the new couple of years with this program. Getting the area paper done, actually conducting some gambling research, and eventually getting that dissertation defended... this whole orals process has got me reflecting both on the past and the future. For one of the first times since I've starting at QC, I can envision the end of the road, and, just as exhilarating (OK, not as exhilarating), the process by which I'll reach that goal. Who knows, I may actually end up with a job that I actually like/love when this is all said and done. Just as long as I have to wheelbarrow full of money to show for it...

Off to catch up on Terminator: TSSC. For some reason, it's sucked since the spring premiere, which I still want explained to me. Maybe this week's will be better...

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:: 2009 25 February :: 2.51 pm
:: Music: Radiohead - House of Cards

A Prayer
Got this from a friend of mine in the program. I pretty much love it/want to take it out behind the middle school and get it pregnant:

Our Skinner, who art at Harvard; Hallowed be thy box; Thy Walden come, they work be replicated; On people as it is on other animals; Give us this day our daily reinforcers; And extinguish our deviant responses; As we withdraw reinforcement of deviant responses in others; Lead us not into satiation; But deliver us from deprivation; For Science is the method, and the results, and the data, for Problem Solving forever.

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:: 2009 15 January :: 11.50 am
:: Music: Vampire Weekend - I Stand Corrected

Best of 2008
Top CDs
1. TV on the Radio - Dear Science
2. My Morning Jacket - Evil Urges
3. The Hold Steady - Stay Positive
4. The National - Boxer (2007)
5. Vampire Weekend
6. We Are Scientists - Brain Thrust Mastery
7. Jenny Lewis - Acid Tongue
8. David Byrne & Brian Eno - Everything That Happens Will Happen Today
9. Augustana - Can't Love, Can't Hurt
10. Death Cab for Cutie - Narrow Stairs
11. Snow Patrol - A Hundred Million Suns
12. Flight of the Conchords
13. Nine Inch Nails - The Slip
14. Nine Inch Nails - Ghosts I-IV
15. The Raconteurs - Consolers of the Lonely

Top Movies*
1. The Dark Knight
2. 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days (2007)
3. Valkyrie
4. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
6. The King of Kong (2007)
7. Cloverfield
8. Get Smart
9. Chicago 10 (2007)
10. Step Brothers

*This is kind of a misnomer, since I haven't seen the majority of 2008 films that I wanted to. With the assistance of Netflix, I hope to correct this before the Oscars.

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:: 2009 14 January :: 2.20 pm

Damon Lindelof on Season 5 of 'Lost'
'One thing we all decided was, the biggest mistake we could make in Season 5 would be to hold back or slow down or go back to a stalling modality. We've basically been feeding the audience crystal meth for a year, to cut them off cold turkey and give them a pack of chewing gum and say, "We'll give you more crystal meth in Season 6," would have been a disaster. When you piss off a junkie, they will do almost anything to get their drug.'

Well said.

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:: 2009 7 January :: 11.22 pm

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:: 2009 1 January :: 11.28 pm

My Morning Jacket - Two Halves
Remember when you were seventeen
You goin' crazy, you know what I mean
It wasn't that long ago
In the grand scheme of things
It wasn't that long ago
You think you're so much smarter now
Twenty one everything stays in place
Forty one some things start to fade
Well when you're so young, you wanna be older
And when you're older, you want the body you have now
I believe in a perfect world
You rule your own universe
The only gun you'll ever need will be in your brain
The only gun you'll need is in your hands

You want this now you want that
Can't have it all you should enjoy what you have
But I know what you want
Well I know what you want
Well I know what you want, you want the better of two halves!
Well I know what you want
Well I know what you want
Well I know what you want, you want the better of two halves!

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:: 2008 30 November :: 9.58 pm
:: Music: Nada Surf - Always Love

Things that occurred to me while watching the Giants today:

- It's probably time for me to pick up Dominik Hixon and Kevin Boss off waivers.
- While I think knowing that games can end in a tie is a must for fans and players alike, I can't blame anyone for not knowing that you can only call for a fair catch with one hand. Penalizing a team 5 yards for making sure defenders know that a player is calling for a fair catch seems a little... nit-picky.
- At this point in the season, 11-1 almost seems preferred to 12-0 (provided we go on to defend our title, of course). Less distractions this way.
- Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Hix is the new Plax. If I'm ready to move on, so should the team.

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:: 2008 17 November :: 11.57 am

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:: 2008 28 October :: 2.06 pm
:: Music: Led Zeppelin - Since I Been Loving You

My dad sent this article to me and some of my uncles today:

My response:
Looking at the recipient list just now, I found myself playing a game of "one of these is not like the other." I do appreciate the opposing viewpoint though. Mr. Card actually had me for a while, up until he started engaging in the same mean-spirited mudslinging and finger-pointing that he accuses our Congress of. To tell you the truth, I'm still boggled we're having this discussion when it comes to our Congress. The Democrats took it over four years ago and have gotten about as much done as the former occupants. It seems, at this point, we should be able to agree on one thing: that the majority of our elected officials are about as effective as the Detroit Lions (please note that this has been the true for both for approximately the same period of time). I can tell you one thing that your favorite bleeding-heart liberal nephew/son believes: he wouldn't have voted for that bailout plan if he was given the chance. God forbid the lenders (and the homeowners, for that matter) take responsibility for getting us into this mess. Then again, this in some way probably highlights my naive ignorance when it comes to macro-economics... I really gotta take a class in that stuff.

I can tell you one (other) thing though, it's never been a better time to be a poor graduate student living in one of the most expensive urban hubs in the U.S. Economic crisis? What economic crisis?

Oh, by the way, you can't give much credence to anything that Orson Scott Card guy says. He writes sci-fi. I read a book he edited about 'Lost.' Seriously. What, are we going to start looking to Kurt Vonnegut for political viewpoints now? ;-)

All my best,

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:: 2008 24 October :: 11.36 am
:: Mood: rhetorical

I was talking to a student today who has shown up for only a handful of classes this semester and who is serious jeopardy of not passing if they choose to stick with the class as opposed to withdrawing. I felt like I was taking an empathic, but firm, stance on their performance thus far in the class. Then, after the student left, the instructor after me remarked about how nice I was to the student, and that she is a lot tougher/meaner in those situations. Normally, I would have felt discouraged by that, but I'm finally to a point to where I'm comfortable enough in that it just felt more ironic than anything else. It's true, though... except in very rare cases where they really piss me off, I don't know how to be an asshole. I blame my upbringing for my inability to be a true sonuvabitch while in a position of authority. On the other side, I've been on the other side on the coin for most of my life, and I know, or at least believe, that management by intimidation and outright dick-age doesn't work that well either. Where's that thin line between democratic, authoritarian, and outright pushover? I'm still learning. I guess we all are.

Another question: Where's that line between resolute and stubborn? I've always believed in upholding your values, whatever they may be, but when it comes at the cost of everything else, when do you just give in, mostly because that thing just doesn't matter to you enough to get all bend out of shape over? I know I'm sounding overly dramatic, and it's not meant to be. Once again, this is just me evaluating my own behavior, trying to strike that perfect balance. Funny me, I keep thinking an evenhanded temperament is the true key to an utopian society.

In any event, my stomach is screaming at me. Time to feed the beast.

P.S. The titles for the first six episodes of Season 5 are out, and are as tantalizing as usual. Check them out behind the cut. And if you don't know what show I'm talking about, maybe you should take another look at my journal background.

Read more..

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:: 2008 23 October :: 6.24 pm

I just finished the house-cleaning of my Gmail account that's been ongoing for a little while now.
I now have a mere 66 total messages, which has to be an all-time low since I started teaching.
Meanwhile, I have 462 messages in my trash...

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:: 2008 20 October :: 9.51 pm
:: Mood: drizzy
:: Music: Augustana - Sweet & Low

I find it amazing that if I go in the hallway of our apartment and walk down all the way to the other end of the building (approximately 50 feet), I can still clearly hear my iTunes playing. And yet, we've never received a complaint about the noise. For that reason alone, I'm not sure I ever want to move.

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:: 2008 3 October :: 11.48 am

Lost Character Cup
So, as one of my new Lost-hiatus pastimes, I entered into DarkUFO's ( March-Madness style tournament where you predict user-favorite Lost characters, and the winner gets a copy of the Season 4 set. They recently finished a similar contest for favorite Episodes, but my predictions were a bit off on that one. I am proud to say, however, that I ended up 33rd (out of 1214 users) for the Character Cup. Alas, I don't have anything to show for it, but it's nice to know I know my Lost characters.

T-minus 124 days until premiere...

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:: 2008 2 October :: 11.20 am

Brighton Port Authority - Toe Jam

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:: 2008 29 August :: 12.35 pm
:: Music: McCain VP Announcement

So this is what live blogging is like...
I gotta hand it to you, John (or better yet, your campaign managers).

- You waited less than 12 hours (!!) to quell the enthusiasm of Obama's speech to announce your VP pick; I've seen vultures work slower than that. You go steal those headlines, John! Show them how politics is about the people, and not just a game!
- Your pick is a plain-spoken (anagram pun intended), middle-aged female governor from Alaska who shares a name with one of the funniest Monty Python members. Kudos on your successful Hilary-cloning experiment, John! And nice touch picking a brunette... nobody will catch on to that one!
- Not only does your VP pick come from a state whose capital is Juneau (totally boss), she's got a son in the military! Take that, Obama! Michelle, you better ship one of the cute little girls of yours off ASAP.

Standing up to 'politics as usual,' eh? You show them, John. You show them exactly what we are trying to get away from.

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:: 2008 21 July :: 4.28 pm
:: Mood: nostalgic
:: Music: Stars - One More Night

So, there's been official word that they're will be a new 'Lost' ARG (alternative reality game) set to begin at this year's ComicCon in San Diego. Supposedly, they will 'recruiting' Dharma Initiative members. This thing looks to blow the 'Find 815' ARG out of the water. I'm so jealous I'm not going, but at the same time I'm totally excited for another Lost-related time waster. If only this pesky school thing would stay away a little longer.

Summer's already half over, which depresses me. With every day, it's harder to not think about having to go back. I probably should be doing more with my time off, though, as usual, I don't feel like the summer is being wasted. And I finally got a draft of my predisseration turned in, and by this time point next year I finally should have a couple articles to my name, so it's not all bad.

We hosted our second poker night yesterday at the apartment. I had a lot of fun and things went a little faster and a little smoother than last time. And I finally won for a change. Thanks to everyone who came.

I'm off to the library to pick up some more reading material, as if I needed it. If I get inspired, maybe I'll share my "to read' list. That, or I'll enter back into radio silence for another 6 months. Guess we'll have to wait and see together.

(edit 5:32pm) Based on his already impressive resume, especially considering his relatively young age, I'm naming Christian Bale the best actor of his generation. I'm not even going to look at his competition, because I'm fairly confident I don't need to.

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