long time, no see

It has been sometime since I’ve been able to post a Random Musing. A quick recap of the reasoning: First, Cyberstation deleted the website again. They’re still billing me (got one today) but still has yet to reactivate my account. Never use Cyberstation of Wichita Falls. I give them two thumbs down. Anyhow, after a couple of weeks of waiting for them, I opened an account elsewhere. So far, they haven’t deleted my account- a good sign. Between the domain transfer and reconfiguring what I had setup, this is the first chance I’ve had to update this site.

With the completion of old business, new business comes up. Remember my parking ticket- well, I appealed it saying that half my car was legally parked and there were no other spaces open. The Appeals Officer decided that I deserved some slack and reduced my ticket- by half. So, half my car was parked illegally so I get fined half the usual amount. Last night, when I was driving home from The Pines, I was pulled over and given a citation for speeding. Going 82 in a 65. One ticket down, one to go.

orange pool table… nice

First- a little housecleaning: I know there was no edition of Sex or of Confessions this week. Feel free to contact Matt or Kari with comments on that :-).
On Wednesday, I went to the Erwin Center to hear President Clinton speak. I am not going to dive into the political message of the lecture but it was an amazing experience. I was able to score seats in the second row of the regular folks (floor level was for VIPs of some sort) and afterwards, I was almost able to shake his hand.
An important topic to discuss: the game of pool. This weekend, I spent the weekend with my brother and an old college friend of his (they met while they were completing their degrees in Mechanical Engineering at the University). In his house in Kyle, he has an amazing UT Sports room with signed baseballs from the National Championship Baseball team, signed mini-basketballs, signed footballs, signed baseball cards and who knows what else. What I really liked about the room was the orange-felt pool table complete with UT pool cues. It was excellent. Pool is one of the classic social games. You talk and converse around the table- it’s social. You have to think about the angles, ball approaches and strategy- it’s academic. You can go to the pool hall and play for a couple bucks an hour- it’s affordable. Currently, I’m horrible at it. Not good at all (So yes, Lambdas, if you need a self-esteem boost, play me Thursday night starting at 10 p.m. at the Lambda Social at Buffalo Billiards on Sixth Street. Ladies come out out!).
Next, I was reading an e-mail that I had received from one of the newsletters I’m subscribed to- it mentions a town who is “literally broke” and their method to get money is to build a tourist attraction. A theme park? A water park? Bats that live under the Congress Street bridge? No, a lava lamp. That’s right, they want to build a giant 60-foot lava lamp to attract tourists. Check it out.
A real quick thing- the new “UT Student Regent” box on the left is showing the status of two bills in the Texas Legslature, Senate Bill 211 and House Bill 719, designed to place a student regent with voting power on the board. It’s been something that has been talked about for a long time now and it has the most force behind it this session than it has had before. I’ll be updating it about weekly from information found at the Capitol Website.
Something I forgot to mention, this weekend I played Super Mario Brothers 3 and Super Brothers 8. The former may sound familiar, the latter probably does not. Reason? While Super Mario Brothers 3 was a fan favorite game of the Nintendo Entertainment Center (NES, ya know? the original… back from 1985… an 8 bit system… the control pad, start, select and the A & B buttons?), Americans never saw Super Brothers 8 because it was only released in Japan. While out in Kyle, my brother’s friend has a Japan NES-style system (I can’t read the characters on the device, the games or in gameplay so I really don’t know) with a handful of games. SMB 3 has the exact same game play except I couldn’t read any of what the text said. Super Brothers 8 felt much like the originial Super Mario Brothers but game play wasn’t as nice. There was Mario- except he carried around a hammer. He couldn’t jump on his enemies but had to hit them with the hammer. Or, you go could some sort of something (no idea what the icon was) which gave you a flame thrower. It reminded me of the fire flowers from the American series but it wasn’t a flower and I couldn’t tell what he was shooting it out of. It is also much harder than the SMB American games. Well, it is if you play it like an American SMB game- there was no turbo so you couldn’t hold down B and jump early. I leapt to my death many times. Anyhow, I’ll comment it on it more later when I play it a bit more. 🙂
I’m going to keep this week’s brief since I have plenty of homework I have before me. Key things to remember: homework is vital. Even if it’s stupid. It proves something- you have work ethic. If you can prove you have work ethic, you will be more attractive to businesses than someone with little work ethic but raw talent. Maybe this is where experience over education comes into play…..

marriage, delivery and the price

First off, I have a couple of friends getting married and like to throw a shout out to them and their beloved. The first is Andrea, a sophomore here with me at The University of Texas at Austin whom is getting married to Charlie this summer. The second is Brandie, a fellow alumnus of Hirschi whom is getting married to Billy this March. Isn’t it amazing how marriage works? Two people usually randomly find each other… no real intention of finding their partner for life. They date a little while, or a long while, and then they decide to never leave each other’s side. The couple, as now it is more politically correct to call them that, now if they haven’t already, subject themselves to the meeting of the families. Some families, this could be a generally easy process except remembering which one is Aunt Patricia and which one is Aunt Dolores. Other families, this could be a living hell. Through whatever that entails, they make it through the gauntlet of the family and after time, the gauntlet of planning the wedding. Then finally, all of the past experiences in their lives come together at the nexus that is the wedding. Before that, they are still two souls in two bodies trying to make it through this world. After the wedding, they emerge still as two bodies, but now with only one soul. Now some people may bark at me and what I just said. It may not be theologically sound in the thinking that each person is responsible for his or her soul, yadda yadda but that isn’t what I am referring to. I mean one soul in that from that day forward, whatever they do, affects each other in some way. They are bonded together for life. Through that life, each individual will change some. Sometimes for the good, sometimes for the bad. Even with whatever changes take place, in theory at least, they stick together. The ride the good times together and weather the bad times. Just amazing.
Even with that, it’s funny how differently marriages are put together. One couple may date for three years (or in cases longer), become engaged and remain in that state for another year. After four years, then they wed. During that time, they continue to learn more and more about each other so that once they become one, it will hopefully be a smooth transition. On the other hand, some people date for a couple of months, decide to get married and then wed within a year of meeting each other. I’m more old school and would rather spend four years being best friends with a girl and then marry her then just marry someone within a year. Of course, the downside with that is you must also find the same type of person. If you’re a “four-year” person and your future-partner is a “within-the-year” type of gal, then well, she’s probably not going to be your future partner. Anyhow, I wish nothing but the best for both couples.
Moving on from that serious subject to one that is even more serious: delivery. The concept of delivery is a great one- who can fault me on this. In the old west (or wherever it got started), that general store manager who said “Ya know, instead of having Miss Jeakens and her boys come down to pick up the feed when it arrives, let’s just go bring it to her. That’ll be a swell thing to do” knew what he was doing. Living in the dorms somewhat takes away from that- you have to go downstairs ::gasp:: to pick up delivery for security reasons. All in all though, it’s a great thing. Those nights you have a pile of homework and feel like something quick. A long day where cooking or going out just doesn’t sound like something to do. Delivery is amazing. “But, I don’t want just pizza or Chinese!” That is something that is horrible in our marketplace today. Who delivers? Depending on where you live, only pizza and Chinese places really deliver. However, in certain areas, like central Austin, you can get cookies, gourmet sandwiches, pizza, chicken, Chinese, Mexican, ice cream, Thai, American, et. al. all delivered. That is really awesome. Spoiling but awesome.
Last Wednesday, Matt mentioned how girls are crazy. While I agree, guys are still madly attracted to them. I think that makes guys crazy as well. Not as crazy but all the same.
Well boys and girls, I have a nice Latin book that is just begging for some attention right about now. I don’t want to give it any but that is the price you pay (beyond tuition, fees, housing and other costs) for being a student. I know it is for a purpose that is needed but I still laugh to think I’m paying someone to allow me to do work. Keep sending me any story ideas and whatnot. Have a good one.

birthday, fire, frats

This is an exciting week for the site. On Wednesday, it will be my website’s six-year anniversary. On February 5, 1997, I took a little personal site full of links and (tried) to make it a little more appealing to the outside world. I did learn something over the past six years- you must offer content. The site before never had anything of interest. Now it does, yay to that. To celebrate the anniversary, I’m going to put up the first graphic I had on my website that I stole from one of the old “Graphics for your webpage!” sites.
Moving on to the real musings, I went on the actives’ retreat with my fraternity, Lambda Omega Alpha this weekend. Fraternities are really a great concept. It’s really amazing the purpose they serve. I am not referring to the massive parties and the stereotypical functions of a fraternity. Well, the parties are cool too but that’s not the point. The brotherhood aspect is something that I have yet to experience anywhere else- even band. (For those who know, band can be a close-knit group…) For those who wonder about joining a fraternity, I wouldn’t say just join any one, but if you can find out you really can flow with- go for it. For me, it was the Lambdas but for Ricky it was Theta Chi. However, I don’t think I would flow with Theta Chi and I don’t think Ricky would flow with the Lambdas.
Fire. Men love to play with fire. I really don’t understand it- I love to play with a little fire too but I don’t know why. Maybe primal instincts of survival or just because fire is some cool stuff. Really though, have you ever really just looked at fire? Just glazed into it… thought you saw something in the flames… started reflecting about the passion you have for something in light… felt the heat of that passion.. all to realize that the passion you felt was your pant leg on fire? Lesson: Don’t go out into a daze while next to a fire.
The next topic was going to be teaching and my personal struggle with that. Then I got to thinking about it and I don’t feel like talking about it anymore. So if you really want to know more about it- that’s your problem. =)
I’ll keep this week’s article random and pointless by throwing in something else pointless. I wish I could experience a Groundhog Day effect for some point in time. Able just to repeat a day… or better yet, a week over and over again until I could figure out how to do things right. Not to mention, it would be a great stress reliever. You know what I mean- go Grand Theft Auto for a day… Oh yes… it would be classic. Best part… wake up… everything is back to normal and your ego is that much bigger. Wait… that might not be a good thing. Neither here nor there. That’s that for this week.
Next Week: The column is called RANDOM musings for a reason… just because Kari knows what she is going to write about people all expect me to…. gosh 🙂

back to the futures, computers

First off, as some of you may have noticed, the camera view has changed some. For the moment, the camera is focused on my laptop screen. Why did I move it? The camera kept off falling off the window ledge and I wanted to use the camera for video creation more. While I’m talking about website details, I am going to start trying to update this on a weekly basis.
Recently, I found a copy of the Back to the Future trilogy in my room. I forgot how much I enjoyed that movie. The concept of time travel has always amazed me. (If you remember my mention of the Time Travel Fund in a previous RM232). Did you know that you can still by a DeLorean? On the DMC website, you can go to Buy Your Own DeLorean and order a DeLorean. Prices start at $32,500 so I will not be purchasing one soon. In either case, that’s simply amazing. If I had the money, I would drive to Houston and pick one up tonight. Back to the Future is my favorite movie and to have the same type of car would make my day. I’ll talk more about the time travel aspects later.
I have been involved in fixing some computers lately. At first, I worked on fixing Tracie’s computer. Among other things, Internet Explorer would not open so I suggested she uninstall it. That caused Windows ME to completely stop working. Yes, that really sucks. I’m still working with her to get that computer back on it’s feet. However, I started working on Kami’s computer. She had a variation of a virus. Using the Remote Assistance feature in Windows Messenger and Windows XP, I removed a couple of rogue programs and some registry keys that loaded the virus. So, I’m one for two on fixing computers in the past week. To Tracie: We’ll get that computer fixed! I promise! Thanks for putting up with your old one while we get the new one fixed.
Matt wanted me to mention the weather in Boston again. Instead of just mentioning what the weather is at the moment I’m writing, I am placing a banner with the current conditions on the left. For comparison’s sake, I am also including an image with Austin’s weather.
While I’m mentioning Matt, here are some exclusive stats on his progress towards 100% completion on GTA:VC:
Matt has played a total of 53 hours and 29 minutes according to our time thus elapsing 254 days within the game. During that time- within a year virtually- he has killed 4140 people- 174 via headshots. Yet he has only sniped four seagulls. Some people might say he is a violent man in the game, but no, he has only killed four seagulls. This man is a friend to PETA (no link since I don’t think they’ll agree). He has even fed thirty-four fishes according to the game stats! So while he’s only made it up to 4 am national TV for the 674 “wanted stars” he’s attained, this man has never ran over a dog in the 1447 miles he has driven. So remember, when people say that GTA is a violent game- look at who they’re looking at. They’re talking about violent against people but the game is obviously not violent towards animals. Remember that people.

short filler

This is just a short filler for now. I plan on having a decent upgrade made to the site by 1/13/2003. 🙂
You all know what is really awesome though- I’m now a sophomore. With the Fall 2002 semester being added to the transcripts, that puts me over the 30 credit hour mark making me now a first-year sophomore at UT.
Anyhow, please look forward to the musings and whatnot that will be added around the 13th. I’ll try to have the College Courses site updated through the Spring 2003 semester as well as improving upon the HHS-UT section.
Oh, before I forget, I do realize something is wrong with the calendar site. It is not supposed to come up in Korean. I’ll play with the hyperlinks later and figure out a fix to the problem. Try just typing in http://calendar.yahoo.com/kraftychat/ That worked for me once.