Sunday, February 29, 2004

Well I'm sitting here in the UT library waiting for the Vietcong demo to finishing downloading to my laptop. I'm gonna run it through my poor pc's wimpy little processor and see if I've got the RAM it takes to play this game.... If it works out, I think I'll run out and buy this game, because I feel like a little reality based FPS action. I think it has something to do with the fact that my small group has been watching Band of Brothers on DVD for the past three weeks... I can only sit there and watch this stuff for so long before I start craving some more interactive action, y'know? My first choice for a demo to play would've been Call of Duty, which is actually set in WW2, and has been recieving rave reviews, but I went with the Vietcong demo because, well, it's smaller. And I hear Vietcong's not to shabby either, if somewhat buggy. It's also cheaper... I'm trying to game on a budget, since, well, I haven't got a job yet. There's stuff on the horizon that looks promising, but until someone is actually telling me to come in from 9 to 5 and promising me a paycheck at the end of the month, I'll play it safe.

Adrian got me into a free MMORPG called Mu Online. No, I don't know how to pronounce that name, and either of the more obvious options sound stupid. Why can't Korean developers pick good names for their games? But Mu's been a pleasant, if brainless distraction. It's basically a dumb-down version of Diablo. Those of you who actually game may be saying to yourselves, "GASP! Is it possible for an RPG to be dumber than Diablo???". Yes, it is, and consequently I bet this game isn't as fun either. But hey, it's free, so who cares. It's been a while since I ran around in the woods killing monsters for no reason other than to watch a digit representing my adventuring prowess go up by 1 point every two hours. The last time I got to do that was when I played Ultima Online. And in that game, mostly the monsters killed *me*.

Oh, on the home front, I should mention my brother Andrew just got married last week! And I missed it... I missed my cousins' weddings too. I missed Paul's wedding, John's wedding, and Jenny's wedding. My mother posits that I might as well go ahead and miss my own wedding. I told her ok, if you find me a bride, just go ahead with the ceremony without me. Send me pictures! My sister left the day after Andrew's wedding for Australia, where she'll be finishing her degree in, er, biotech or something like that. So now my parents are home alone. I hope they don't get too bored! Maybe planning my wedding will keep them busy ;p.

Thursday, February 26, 2004

Dad's been complaining I don't email often enough about what I do here in Knoxville, and I guess he's right. It's hard to think of things to say, though, when all there is to talk about a bunch of little things, which, individually, don't look like they mean much. What I'm saying is, I need a job, and I need it soon, or I'll go crazy from boredom.

Anyway, to fight of the monotony of sending out resumes, I've been learning a few new tricks: server-side scripting (php, MySQL) and Flash MX to be specific. Thanks to CCL for hooking me up with Flash! Anyway I've already got some fun flash banners for my website in the photos section. Four banners... one for each of the pages in that section. They didn't take too long to do... 2 days maybe. Okay that's long, but hey, I'm bored remember?

I'm going to go see the Passion next Saturday.... got a five dollar ticket for the matinee show. I got it at church last Sunday, so I'm going with a group. So far I'm the only one I know who's going, but that just means I can slink away after the movie without anyone noticing. However, Rick Dunn, Fellowship's pastor, is gonna debrief us at church after the movie. That might be interesting to hear. I've read all sorts of reviews about this movie... I have no idea what to expect really. Except for blood. I know it's really bloody.

I can't say I appreciate all the controversy this movie is getting, but if it makes people go watch it out of curiosity, maybe that's a good thing. Then again, I just saw a segment about the 'The Mel' and his movie on the Daily Show on Comedy Central - you know it's made an impact if it shows up on Comedy Central- and I gotta admit, it's troubling how easy it was to make a joke out of the whole thing. I mean, *I* laughed. And Mel *has* been looking a little wild-eyed in his recent interviews... I don't blame him. When you're getting that much flak from the secular press, you'd be looking a little like a starving animal too whenever you got on tv to do an interview. I never thought I'd say this, but I'll be praying for Mel Gibson this week. I like the exerpts I've read of his Diane Sawyer interview, though. Whatever it is folks may think of that wild-eyed man on tv, I hope they take the message to heart.

While I'm on the subject of famous people with Catholic leanings, Sting has had a new CD out for while, now: "Sacred Love" (or "Send Your Love" in the UK). I just got a $6 scratched CD from McKays a couple of weeks ago, and I've been loving it. Yep, even more than McDees! Some of the songs are borderline CCM, but it's Sting, so you know doesn't all the way there. Not that CCM's bad. I just don't listen to it. Adrian keeps hooking me up with CCM music though, so I do have a couple of songs on my laptop for reference. Anyway, like I said, I love this CD. 'Dead Man's Rope' and 'Send Your Love' are probably my favorite tracks. I gotta figure out how to play 'Dead Man's Rope' on guitar.

Hmm... yep.

Saturday, February 21, 2004

I was listening to last week's Prairie Home Companion from their website, and I just thought I'd tell y'all they had a very funny English Major skit which lasted maybe three minutes, but they used one of my favorite Yeats poems, which makes it even funnier.

And yes I used "y'all" in a sentence. Bite me.

The skit went like this:

GK: This portion of our show is brought to you by the Professional Organization of English Majors. When it comes to romance, there is nothing so effective as the English language, when it's used by a trained English major. People in the technical fields are at a disadvantage.

TR: Let me just input this thought---- if you think of the heart as a matrix…

GK: If you spend all day doing finance, probably you're going to have a hard time expressing feelings……

TR: I look at this as a win-win situation ---- we take an option on the future and there's no downside for at least 18 months---

GK: Whereas an English major has Shakespeare to draw on, Keats, Shelley, Yeats----…

SS: It's Valentine's Day. Did you forget?

GK: I thought about Valentine's Day when I was alone, when there was nobody, and now that my life is commingled with yours----

SS: I love that word "commingled".

GK: I feel that flowers, chocolate, are so trivial ---- what I want to give you are the embroidered cloths of heaven, enwrought with golden and silver light, the blue and the dim and the dark cloths of night and light and the half-light.

SS: Hold me.

GK: I want to spread them under your feet. Because I am poor, I have only my dreams.

SS: Let me take you upstairs-----

GK: I have to be at work at Burger King in an hour.

SS: Then let me take you to dinner.

GK: Great. A message from the Professional Organization of English majors.

And the poem they're referencing is this:

He wishes for the cloths of heaven

Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly, because you tread on my dreams.

-- William Butler Yeats

Wednesday, February 18, 2004

Ok, so I lied, and went back and fixed Brent and Marci's website so that it looks passable on Mozilla. I realised after looking at it on Cliff's Mac that most Mac users aren't using IE (seeing as how Microsoft isn't updating IE for Macs anymore), and of course it looked like utter crap on Safari, so there you have it. The site is fixed, kinda. It still doesn't look exactly the same as in IE, but some of the more serious alignment problems have been dealt with.

I recently attended a meeting set up by some folks from Quixtar, which, if you've never heard of it, is the e-commerce version of Amway. I didn't know what it was before I went... the guy who invited me was a little secretive about the whole thing. I'll make a long story short: I wouldn't this thing with a ten-foot pole. I won't say that's true for everyone, because I'm sure you can make tons of money doing this sort of thing. The whole para-religious nature of it just doesn't rub me the right way.

So I guess I'll just slog away like the rest of the world, and die poor :p. Once I get a job, that is.

Dayton Pt 4

I think I'll wrap up the Dayton pics with a bunch of animals I saw at the museum in Columbus. That's a lizard.

Those are fish.

Those are a pair of lovebirds. Aaaaaaaw!

Thursday, February 12, 2004

I'm starting to use Mozilla's Firefox as my primary browser. Two reasons: the tab feature and the block-popups feature. I don't like the way xp handles excessive windows in the taskbar by default, and I couldn't be bothered to figure out how to change the default, so I'm going with Firefox for my multiple-window surfing needs. The popup-blocking is self-explanatory, I think. Unfortunately, Firefox has strange ways of displaying some webpages, and the reality is that for most webmasters, IE-compliance takes precedence when they build their sites... so I'll still have to resort to opening a page in IE at times. Oh well.

Brent and Marci's wedding page is ready! Aside from any future content updates, it looks (and sounds) the way it should: An Appalachian Wedding
Note that it doesn't display correctly in Mozilla Firefox, unfortunately. And I'm not fixing it because I'm one of those ambivalent webmasters I mentioned earlier.

My personal website has gotten a CSS facelift and an address change. Geocities wouldn't let me FTP stuff to my site anymore. Wankers!!! So here is my new tripod site: Opposable Thoughts

There's a couple of stupid tricks I did with the division properties of CSS... have fun looking at them :p.

Dayton Pt 3:

The house! Of! The! Forsythes!

This, I'm told, is the first Wendy's ever, and it's in Columbus, OH.

This is the museum we went to... I forget what it was called. They had a special exhibit of glass art.

... and that's one example.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

Well I finally got word that my OPT's been approved, so in a couple of weeks I should be able to actually work for a living. Bumming's been fun, but watching my bank account dwindle to nothing hasn't been. I talked to the recruiter today to remind "Hey! I'm still here!", so hopefully the timing is just right for when the OPT card arrives and I can start doing something right away. In the meantime, I'm trying to learn CSS... Marci and Brent have me doing a wedding webpage for them and I figure this is a good time to expand my website-building prowess.

Dayton Pt 2

Matt and Gretchen kept a stash of loot in the basement of the house, which is where I slept. I forget if it was Xmas loot or Wedding loot. I got a free box of chocolates from that stash, though. As a gift. Really!

I'm told this is Brent's favorite part of the Forsythe house. It's mine too. I could sit here and eat breakfast all day.

"Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree! There's a cat sitting next to yoooou!"
... That's why I don't write christmas caroles.