Sunday, December 31, 2006

More Christian Theology Board Game Cards

This Sunday I have two more cards which will be used in the Christian Theology Board Game. The first is the first event card made, which concerns the Protestant Reformation. The second is an Issues in Practice card dealing with women in ministry--with this card in your theology, you permit women to become ordained pastors and prohibit yourself from completing the Baptist or Catholic sets of cards. So about what all those numbers and symbols mean: First off is the card classifications:

Events in History cards, like the Protestant Reformation card, cause something in the game to happen. Elements of Theology cards, or all those Issues in Practice and Points of Doctrine cards, are cards that can be incorporated into your theology from your hand.

Second of all is the grey three-letter circles on the Elements cards: GOD is the card's view of God (traditional or nontraditional, to account for how traditional the card's view of God, Christology, etc. is), BIB is whether the card relies on a sola scriptura standpoint or also uses tradition in interpreting the Bible, SAL is the card's view of salvation--whether it somehow relies on free will, whether it is predestined, or whether it is universal, or extended to all persons by default; lastly, STR is the church structure. High means heirarchical like the Catholic church. Medium is like a Presbyterian or Methodist structure. Low is like a Congregationalist or nondenominational structure, where things are very much less centralized.

These affiliation notes help you tell which cards are compatible and which ones are not, which is very important when you are putting together your theology, becuase with few exceptions you are not allowed to break the cards' compatibility.

The fractional numbers that austin asked about tell you which set(s) the card is part of. In the top-right hand corner this is abbreviated just the number; in the part below the grey circles you see a number on top, a number on bottom, and a name of the denomination or group or movement to the right. The number on top is which number in the list of beliefs or practices the card represents. The number on bottom is the total number of items on the list, all of which which must be collected to complete the set. As you can see, the women in ministry card has the "Baptist" and "Catholic" names, but both are crossed out, which indicates that either complete set is incompatible with the card. Anyway, that's all I've got for today as far as the cards go. More to come later.

Good day and God bless!

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Three CTBG Cards (With the New Design!)

The Christian Theology Board Game has gotten its final design change for the front-side Elements of Theology cards. Here are two old cards (both of which are Points of Doctrine types) and a new one, which is an Issues in Practice card. I also plan on doing one or two new ones for Sunday.







If you have a question about what something on the card means, please feel free to let me know.

Update: I've decided that since I got up at 5 PM yesterday, I'm just going to stay up and get to bed at a normal or even early time today. That way I'll be able to get up at a normal time for church. Shouldn't be too bad; overall it'll only put me at about 29 hours, a time which I've pulled plenty in the past. Plus, I can take a nap somewhere in there.

Update 2: I'm up again now, and it's 10:43 AM. Now I just have to stay up long enough to get a good night's rest for tomorror. ALSO, I already know that I need to put ex cathedra onto the Papacy card.

That's about all I have tonight. Goodnight / God bless!

Friday, December 29, 2006

Can an Extended Kindergarten Help Kids?

Apparently some schools are implementing full-day kindergarten in an effort to help give students more knowledge. And, although there is skepticism about long-term effects of such programs (how helpful they really are long-term) there appears to be a positive correlation between these new daylong kindergartens and higher reading scores and math scores in the 3rd grade tests.

Check out the article here, and please feel more than free to comment on the blog. We've upgraded to Blogger 2.0 or whatnot. (By comment on the blog I mean the thing linked to as well as the look; whichever you feel the need to pour out your heart about.)

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Things I Need to do over Christmas Break

1) Relax. It's called a break for a reason, and I won't get a Christmas break this long when I'm in the workforce.
2) Read: There are three books I want to read / finish over Christmas break. One's already half-read. Gilead I'm reading because my Dad is reading Orthodoxy. It's a book exchange of sorts. I know that Neuromancer is supposed to be a groundbreaking science-fiction novel (it's one of the big ones in a genre called cyberpunk, which is generally said to be a science-fiction genre that involves dystopian societies and a noir-esque style). Lastly I will be reading Ayn Rand's Fountainhead, which should be a rather interesting and philosophical work.
3) Play!: I want to hang out with people over break and all that jazz. See some people I don't normally see. It'll be fun.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Mary Poppins!

This page got linked at DigitalMZX. Awesomeness. Be forewarned: Your assessment of said film might change after seeing this! (The page that was linked has now been replaced with a direct embedding of the YouTube trailer.



Almost makes me want to see the original, which I think I've seen once, if I have seen it.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Recipe for Freaked-Out Parents

To my parents: I don't actually expect you to be too freaked out about this; don't worry, everything will get in on time.

Take one college student with parents living nearby, but not within the distance of same household.
Add approximately one month of procrastination followed by a half-nighter.
Add also relief of student at finally finishing big theology and philosophy papers, although the theology paper took about two hours more into the morning than the philosophy did.
Add also relief of student that his life has stopped sucking for approximately a day and a half; despite the fact that he has vector that will pile up and need to be turned in on Thursday and Friday and will only get about 5 or so hours of sleep tonight, he no longer has to deal with a theology paper hanging over his head. As a bonus, he can imagine his satisfaction tomorrow as he goes to the library to drop off the books he had checked out as part of his theology research--all ten of them--out of which he only used about four or five.

It's 5:21 right now. Can you all tell?

Also: No, I do not plan on making this a habit. I tried that first semester Freshman year and it failed miserably. Note that this semester's GPA, assuming I don't flunk my finals...well I'm hoping for at least a solid 0.2 above last semester's, which would put me at about a B+ average.

I am going to go read some of Gilead and then go to sleep. Good night / God bless.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Lots of Fun Stuff This Weekend

There was lots of cool stuff happening this weekend, including the annual theology party and me going to Imago Dei for the first time. Here's how stuff happened:

The Theology Party

So last night I went to the annual theology event known as the Dutch Christmas party. Basically, the chair of the theology department is Dutch, and quite so. And so every year he gives a Dutch Christmas party for theology majors and faculty. This year was my first year going--as a prospective theolgoy major last year I'd been invited, but for reasons I can't remember, I didn't go. Ed, Tyler (not my roommate Tyler, a different Tyler) and I got a ride with my Modern Christianity professor, who is also the advisor to quite a few theology majors, and who herein I'll call the Advisor for sake of not using professors' names.

So we got to his house, and the beginning part was that we hung around for a bit and sampled the sort of Dutch candies and treats that had been prepared. One of them was this thing he (the Chair) called Dutch doughnuts. Apparently the routine with those is that you bite them and you take this white powder and put it on your plate, and you dip the part you bit into the powder and then eat some more of the pastry. It was pretty good. I had to avoid one candy because it had alcohol in it and despite everybody's statements to the contrary I'm not so quick to assume it was baked out.

Speaking of which it was very interesting to be at an event in which students (ones old enough) and faculty were drinking alcohol. I was a bit out of my comfort zone, I'll admit, to be talking with professors and shaking their hands when they were holding a drink in their other hand...Just different.

Some of the professors were really awesome, though, and I got to meet a few of them who I hadn't already, and talk to them about stuff, which was cool. Naturally, at least with me and I know with other people as well, theology was a topic of discussion. Of course it's going to happen when you organize a gathering around people who have what isn't exactly a sizeable major.

I also told my Bib-Trad professor about the Christian theology board game and asked if I could drop by some time to make sure I was treading more left-leaning theologies in an evenhanded manner. She said that would work, which was cool.

One of the professors read this poem by G.K. Chesterton prefacing the dinner prayer, a poem which I don't remember the name of--but it's all about the Nativity, and it's a good little meditation. The prayer was a Catholic one that I didn't know, and I was one of the few people who didn't seem to know it--but that's to be expected in a setting where one is one of the token Protestants. Dinner was self-served, which according to the Chair is a Dutch thing--that it's like your home, but that also means you serve your own food...which is actually quite fine. I had the spaghetti, which was good.

As the last "official" event of the evening, the Chair had all of the theology faculty go around and talk about what they'd been up to that last year as far as publications, books, etc. Then the Advisor did the same with majors, asking for a name, a bit about oneself and a theological insight we'd gained.

So I actually talked about how I'd been dialoguing with Xeirxes on matters of interpretation of Scripture and talking to him about questions he had about the Catholics. (Xeirx is an avid Calvinist, and I didn't mention him by name, partly as that might've required further explanation that wasn't really appropriate to give there regarding things like MZX, and which I've already given to anyone close enough to hear me mention said dialogues on a regular basis. However, I mentioned that the insight had come with respect to the Modern Christianity class, that insight being my learning about the sort of starting points of Calvinism with respect to biblical interpretation and whatnot--and how that had made dialogue that much more understandable. I also mentioned that I couldn't really answer his questions completely about Catholics because I wasn't one. A theology major friend of mine, Matt, mentioned that they could "fix that." I noted for the sake of the group not in on the joke that it was a running gag that I was doomed to be a Catholic someday--to which the Chair responded "you mean Predestined," and a good laugh was had.

After each person had spoken they were given a chocolate letter which I believe was supposed to match the first letter of their first name, although I think that might've been just for majors. (I'm not at all sure either way.) But apparently that's one of the Dutch traditions we did, and it was pretty awesome. After the big speaking time, we hung around for a bit longer, and eventually everybody started going, and the last few people sort of all left at once. Ed and I rode home with Matt--Tyler had left a bit earlier with the "Holy Cross Van"--and we had some more discussion on the way back, which was cool.

Imago Dei

So I went to Imago Dei with a few Mehling people--I'd talked to this person named Laurie about the possibility of going, which was how I wound up going on this Sunday. It was a pretty good experience overall. Apparently their Pastor is on sabbatical right now, which he hasn't taken since the church started about five years ago.

One thing that's sort of different about Imago Dei as opposed to other churches is that it actually meets in Franklin High School's auditorium. It worked out rather well, though. The band that was playing for worship was interesting; they had a guitar, an upright bass that was being plucked, a...I don't know, bass cello maybe? that was being bowed and a violin, as well as a percussionist/drummer guy. It's the first Sunday of Advent, so they did some stuff for that--a lot of stuff for that, actually. They did Christmas music--the first song was "O Come Emanuel" and the timing they chose wasn't my favorite, but "O Come Emanuel" is still "O Come Emanuel", and still awesome.

Then they did a reading, and then they did a song, then more reading, and I think another song...somewhere in there I think there was a sermonette involved. There was also, later on in the service, a five-minute meditation that this guy led where we were supposed to just focus and whatnot, and listen to Scripture being read. I actually thought it was rather good--the guy also made a very good effort to differentiate Christian meditation from the type more commonly found in Eastern religions.

Then there was a sermon about giving, but it was also a call to give. The guy said some stuff sort of like what Pastor Gene was saying, but he instead replaced gift-giving with giving towards needs only, and eschewing wants as far as that goes. As when Gene says stuff like that, I'm not sure I entirely agree, but I do agree with placing a lesser emphasis on want-based giving/receiving and I do really appreciate the sentiment of it, which is that we focus more on Jesus.

According to Laurie the service went about 30 minutes longer than it normally would. Much of those 30 minutes were taken up by missions/donations talk, which was fine. Some of the stuff they're connected to is pretty awesome--like working with a Middle School in Portland which serves a population with many homeless families in it, or working with an organization in Africa which has a goal of helping women get out of prostitution, and actually has helped a few.

At the end of the service (apparently, it's normally near the end but not actually at the end) there was communion, which was accompanied by instrumental renderings of hymns. I forget what the first was, but the second was "Be Thou My Vision" and it was really awesome stuff. Also, taking communion for the first time in months was a very positive experience, and I felt at least that I was generally right with God, which is always a plus when you're taking communion. They did it differently--here you take a piece of bread and dip it into the juice or wine (whichever you're comfortable with; I did in fact use the juice) and then take it.

One thing I really liked about Imago Dei was that they had a very hardcore social action emphasis, a very hardcore service emphasis--not just giving money or even just giving time, but like some of the programs they were involved with, actually trying to help to change peoples' lives. I would of course have to visit them in a less traditionally service-heavy time of year to be absolutely sure of this, but they seem at least from this service as though they might be more service-heavy by default than many other churches around. I think it might be part of God's plan to get me to fix the fact that as far as my Christian walk goes, my capacity for service sucks. I'm already thinking of ways I might remedy that next semester, but I'm thinking that even doing service could be a good thing to look into over the break as well--after all, it is advent.

Anyway, I had a fun weekend. But very soon now (within half an hour or so) the fun begins to give way to not failing at writing philosophy and theology papers which will probably be decent portions of those grades. Thank goodness Discrete Math isn't actually due this week. I might still go to mass tonight; I'm not sure entirely.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Another Card

As I said I would, here's another card. The design's different and still subject to change again, but I like this design better than the last.



Enjoy.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Apparently I Lied

Because while I'll eventually post one of my most bizarre recent dreams I don't feel like doing so now. HOWEVER this will serve as the announcement for a newer project of mine, the Christian Theology Board Game. I got the idea when Luke and Mike, a couple of Catholic friends of mine, had talked about making a Catholic board game, which it turns out was supposed to be more of a card-based deal.

Basically its purpose would be to be a vaguely educational and somewhat absurd and fun exploration of various ideas, figures and movements in Christian theology, using several seemingly random gamepieces and various cards. I don't want to say too much, but to keep myself on track I'm going to try and post a new "card" of some kind every Sunday. I'm going to post one now, which is the latest card design...If you dislike the card design please tell me ASAP.


Sunday, November 05, 2006

Dreams

What are your most bizarre dreams? (PG and below only, please.)

I'll share a recent bizarre dream next post.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Random Tidbits of College Life #3

So usually I'm pretty good about not randomly laughing during hall masses. It doesn't actually happen that often, or really one purpose--but sometimes something sets me off. Two of the last four incidences I can think of have been fairly under-control...That is, I managed to get them under control fairly quickly. The other two weren't as much.

Earlier this year Peter did a reading which involved the phrase "gird your loins." Whatever you might say about my maturity, this did indeed set me off--to the point where I felt the need to leave the room for a second and recollect myself. Well, that phrase came up again this last week, in a Gospel reading this time. I managed to contain it as with the more minor incidents and, having survived "gird your loins" thought I might have a chance of making it through the whole mass.

Not so. You see, the presider for this mass was one Father Gordon. Father Gordon is actually one of my favorite presiders, even given that I've only had two masses with him. However something about his voice makes me laugh. And during one of the prayers, there was one word in which his timing was just a tad off from the timing of the congregation. For some reason this was just enough to get me going again. I actually did try to contain it. However my method for doing so was to press my face into my hands and then my face and hands into my lap. While one or two people knew that I was laughing, most of them, when they found out, said they'd had no idea. Reactions included phrases similar to the following:

"Oh, is that what that was?"
"It looked to me like you were having some sort of profound conversion experience."
"It looked like you were crying and I was wondering if you were okay."

(That third one was actually an explanation of why the person saying so had asked me earlier if I was indeed okay.)

So I found this to be quite a humorous event. I think the next time it gets to that point I'm going to step outside, though, as that's a tad easier. What I'm not understanding is why this never happens at the big Chapel of Christ the Teacher masses.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Anticipation

Fall break started today.

It's been a theme in the last couple of days for me to anticipate the next time someone says something about their church being the best, or Protestants being better than Catholics in the arena of truth or anything that even remotely resembles that stuff. And I know if that actually happens I'm going to be calm/collected about it, perhaps a bit peeved, but calm/collected.

I'm such a freakin' Pietist. Like, more than I ever was. And if that sounds funny in context, look up the word. You'll know what I mean.

For some reason I don't get as ticked about it when my Catholic friends do it, though. Also, this post is a bit angry, but I'm listening to angry trance right now. It's quality angry trance, but still. (Hybrid - Falling Down)

I got a crapload of theology reading done today, about 60 pages out of the 303 or so in the book. Heheh, 303. Synth. I'm probably going to go rejoin the Star Wars marathon, but I might skip Empire Strikes Back in order to do some Discrete Math and/or Vector. Why? Not quite sure. Empire's really not the coolest one, though.

If anyone reading could pray for me, because I've been sort of a jerk to people lately.

ADDENDUM:

I sort of wish we Free Methodists had more of a liturgy...

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Every Agent Acts Towards An End

Apparently St. Thomas Aquinas believes it is very important for me to realize that every agent acts towards an end. At least, I think so, or else there wouldn't have been five to seven whole paragraphs about it.

So I guess I'll pass along that statement to you: "Every agent acts towards an end."

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Random Recap of College Life #1

Music: Sped-up Jars of Clay and and EsDemo1's demo-song-thing

This is different from the random tidbits because those stories are supposed to be funny. This is more of a rambling or recap of the last couple days that will hopefully be found funny by somebody or other, either on purpose or not.

Christie Pub was on Wednesday. It wasn't the most amazing event ever but it definitely had its moments. For instance there's this guy who played violin like crazy; apparently he played the 'fiddle' to be more precise, but I'm not sure quite what the distinction is (I think I heard it, though.) But if someone's got a decent definition of the difference, please tell me. There were many other acts. I also won $5 for being able to fold my ears. How awesome is that? (Also, in your face, whoever thought that was gross back when I started in 3rd grade--I know of at least one person on campus who fits these two criteria:

a) is a girl
b) thought the ear thing was 'awesome', as opposed to the inital reaction being that it was weird)

Told you this was going to be random. Christie Pub had some other good moments too, like the fireman song at the end, or Mike doing a bunch of covers of songs that went over really well. Most especially I enjoyed "Mrs. Robinson" which was one of the songs he did with Luke singing. Also, this band Dispatch (a certain cousin of mine was into them for awhile, at least) got covered twice. The song 'The General" was the one I knew; the other one I had no idea was even them. Oh yeah, as part of the call for random actage, this guy who transferred in this year attempted a cover of Audio Adrenaline's "Houseplant Song" on the spot. For on-the-spot it was pretty good.

I went to see Steel Magnolias on Thursday. I really did enjoy the play. (For those who haven't seen it, it's four scenes from the lives of six women in a southern beauty shop.) The dialogue was good and one character in particular (Oiuser or something was how the first name was spelled, but it was pronounced like "Weezer") was played very well and with the maximum comedic effect. It made me sorry I didn't go to plays on-campus last year; I'm going to be going to the next one, definitely; it's some farce apparently, called Lend me a Tenor.

Academically I did alright this week. Math's a mixed bag, sort of. Theology is going well but I need to study it this weekend. Everything else is good. My first three tests back were an A and two high B's, so I can't complain too much there, although I'll be studying more for at least two of those, and reading my next vector test for stupid mistakes. Also I am going to FILL OUT THAT STUDY ABROAD FORM tomorrow and, in my spare time Monday (and I guarantee you I'll have spare time for this Monday) I will get my last semester Spanish professor a...those form things.)

Jars of Clay sounds...very interesting sped up. Tangent: When I return home for whatever length of time I return home this Fall Break, my parents will have a chance to hear a Jars cover of an old-school hymn. It's not unmodified as far as vocal line, but if you knew the old one its followable/recognizable, and it's done in that style that sounds sort of country-gospel. It's "Nothing but the Blood," and I thouroughly enjoy that rendition. I can't speed it up, though. I'll explain why on demand.

Back to the curve the tangent was spawned from, I'm also enjoying putting things in Discrete Math terms. Like the other day, I was totally in Ethics listening to a thing about abortion and what possible exceptions there were. I totally wrote down in my notebook:

[Backwards capital E sans serif] an abortion x such that x is morally acceptable.

(A backwards capital E sans serif is my way of describing the symbol which in math tends to stand for the term "there exists.")

In English it basically means "There is some act of abortion that's morally acceptable."

It's obvious to me that I'm REALLY off on a tangent now. So I'm going to stop writing. Goodnight / God bless, all.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Random Tidbits of College Life #2

Note that there's some stuff in this post that might not be the best for people who might be reading over your shoulder of ages less than or equal to 11.

Fine Arts the other day, Doug and I sit with this girl whom we know. Before the lecture starts (I don't remember how the conversation got here, quite) I was explaining why I might feel uncomfortable looking at a series of nudes. But somewhere in my flustered explanation I seem to have given her reason to ask:

"Are you gay?"

Of course this prompted a very quick explanation of how I was very much not. At which point she said "Oh, right, you're Mormon!" which prompted yet another very staightforward explanation that I was not in fact Mormon, either. Also I took no offense at any of this and really just thought it was hilarious.

So this Thursday, which was two days later, Doug and I are riding to the art museum after our Fine Arts classes just got out. Now you'll need some background on this one. In a previous lecture (not the one this week, but one last week I think) we'd been shown this picture called "The Nightmare" by this guy named Fuseli. (You can see the work on this page here. So we're riding on the bus to the museum and I'm describing the painting to Bonebrake, who's sitting behind us on the bus; I say something along the lines of "this painting where a woman's on her bad and these monsters come in through the window, and it looks like the goblin's copping a feel." I'd pointed out the perverted goblin to Doug when the lecture had first been given.

At this point one of the Fine Arts professors, who was riding roughly across from us, talked to us and informed us that the painting was, in fact, supposed to be erotic. At this point we just laughed, because it just made the whole thing even funnier. You learn something new every day.

The third story has nothing to do with fine arts and it actually pretty pointless, but I'm amused by it:

Later Thursday night, after Bible Study, I ask one guy where he was at Bible Study and he says he had homework to do, but thanked me for calling him "to accounts." Honestly, I think I was mostly just curious.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Random Tidbits of College Life #1

Music: Daft Punk - Voyager

I'm not sure how it'll go exactly, but the Ethics test is now for all intents and purposes out of my hands. So that's a load off my mind. Vector test probably didn't go as well as I initially thought but hopefully when I get the test back (possibly tomorrow; I'm not really sure when it'll come back to us) it'll have some kind of an A or high B on it.

If you know the names of any professors or persons mentioned, who are not named, please don't post anything that makes their identity more known than I've made it.

So Monday, I'm in my theology class. We finish our weekly quiz (Monday was the only class day this week). As we go over it, the professor begins a micro-lecture on one point of the quiz. I totally decide that I want to see if I can make my quiz into a paper airplane before he's done. So I do, barely, then I rapidly unfold it and hand it in to my professor. Keep in mind that this guy has an awesome sense of humor and is, while a fairly formal lecture, not committed to being formal for all intents and purposes.

He looks through the papers and, upon reaching mine, holds it up and looks at me and says "You were that bored?" He then holds it up to the class and says "This is one of our theology majors, here." He looks back at me again. "Do you want to see if you can throw it to me?"

I can't remember exactly which comments ensued, but one of them was akin to "If he doesn't make it, he fails!"

I said okay, and he held the stack of papers as a sort of landing area. I quickly refolded the airplane and let it fly from my seat...And it landed right in the trashcan. Our professor commented "What would a Calvinist say about that?" and proceeded to tell the typical joke about a Calvinist falling down the stairs and saying "Glad I got that over with."

Of course the whole process was highly amusing for the professor and I, and caused much laughter in the classroom. I can't quite express quite how awesome it was.

So I'm thinking I want to do another "set your Bibles to fun" thing. But the topic I'm contemplating is one that could be a bit controversial in this family.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Calviminian Challenge: Set Your Bibles to Fun

I was dialoguing with another Christian MZXer (very earnest, very eager to serve God, and quite the Calvinist to my Arminian.) So how 'bout that Calvinism, eh?

And while I'm at it, here's the challenge problem: Whether you like it or dislike it, why do you like it or dislike it? On the levels of personal response, theological responses, and--here's the real challenge--anyone seeing the Scriptural evidence on the issue?

Monday, September 18, 2006

Barenaked Ladies

Now that I have your attention, this post really is about Barenaked Ladies...However it's really a band, often abbreviated BNL. I was introduced to them on the way to FreedomFest by Shawn and Alicia. Contrary to what their name might suggest, they're nowhere near offensive--not even as much as, for instance, Linkin Park. I found them to be very lyrically awesome, on the level of hey-this-song-has-no-possibility-of-offending-anyone's-morality and on the level of, well, just plain awesomeness. The band name's a bit awkward--for instance it just sound weird if you're looking for band info and you say you're looking for barenaked ladies on the internet. Check these lyrics:

I'm so chill / No wonder it's freezing
I'm so still / I can't seem to keep my fingers out of anything
I'm so thrilled to finally be failing
I'm so done / Turn me over 'cause it feels just like I'm falling for the first time
Anything plain can be lovely; Anything loved can be lost
Maybe I lost my direction? What if our love is the cost?

(from Falling for the First Time)

Anyway, I thought I'd make a post about something.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

What the Hetts?! #11: ...Wow is All I Can Say

Utterly twisted? Yep. Utterly immoral? Yep. Here we have the disgustingly bad story of the year.

Obviously this "What the Hetts?!" is less in awe of human silliness, or the silliness that exists in our lives, and more in awe of the amazing stupidity or depravity (or combination thereof) that permeates this situation. The kid dies for a reunion. The big question I have reading this is what they were thinking and why they didn't just take the kid with them; disabled or not, he's theirs to care for.

"What the Hetts?!"

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

FreedomFest 2006 (Part 1/2)

So FreedomFest 2006, or SnohomishFest, or FrankFest as the latest nickname is, is this Christian Rock festival that takes place in Snohomish, Washington every year, for at least the last few years now. I'm going to give a rundown of a few of the bands who were there, how they were, etc.

This'll be the first post. I'll go more indepth about random other stuff next post.

DAY ONE

Zeo Doxa - They seem to have replaced their female lead singer with a male lead singer. They were a lot better than last year, judging from what we could hear of them last year.

Fair - Aaron Sprinkle's band was pretty generic pop-rock, but it was still good stuff.

Seventh Day Slumber - SDS was the goodness that only SDS can be for yet another year. They played some of their better so-bad-they're-good songs such as "Candy," "Caroline," and "Innocence." More on them to come later.

Anberlin - I don't know if I've ever seen that metrosexual of a singer at a Christian rock festival. However the concert was still awesome and despite my very limited exposure to Anberlin (mostly radio / their givaways) I managed to know most of the songs they were singing. They were fun.

MxPx - They were pretty good. First band I can remember seeing live that had a bassist as the lead singer, which was pretty cool. They were pretty fun, but probably would've been a bit more fun if I'd known their music. But they had a big enough fanbase by this show that they could get away with not really targeting anybody who wasn't already a fan.

DAY TWO

Soul Deep - This band led worship at YouthQuest 2004. They were awesome then and were now; they would've been even more awesome if I'd recognized more'n one or two of the songs they played that day, but as said they still rocked. I'm not actually sure I recognized any. Memory's a bit fuzzy there.

Gretchen - I didn't pay too much attention to this particular concert. HOWEVER, I think Shawn/Alicia liked them alright. Also, they sang a Dracula-inspired song, which apparently had something to do with Christian imagery in the movie. Fun fact: NOBODY in their band was actually named Gretchen--the name comes from some girl in a short story about Narnia or somesuch.

Kevin Max - This concert appears to have been about 20 minutes long or so. I was playing frisbee at this point with Billy and Andrew, so I didn't really see much of the concert, except when he came out in a priestlike outfit which (by Shawn/Alicia's account) he claimed was really a common thing for men in China to wear. According to what I hear (and vague snippits I picked up) he said a lot of random stuff to try and get the crowd excited, and eventually walked offstage, and appeared to be having a bad day.

KJ-52 - This guy was for me the surprise 'hit.' Last year we didn't really give him a chance, as we were making dinner out in the parking lot at the time. So we only heard what we heard from there of his show and assumed he sort of sucked. HOWEVER, we actually SAW his show this year, and it was pretty awesome. Not necessarily the music, but he was a great performer.

Sanctus Real - These guys were pretty good in concert. But the thing that made 'em really awesome was this: Unknown to at least me, Shawn had seeked out (that the right form of the verb?) Sanctus Real's lead guy and I think guitarist during the Kevin Max show, when they were in the audience, and said "I hope you play this song, because I'm here with my fiance and it's our song" or something to that effect. Anyway, Shawn and Alicia were in the front row for their show, and the singer asked if they were there, then gave a brief account of the story, after which the band dedicated that performance of the song to them and played it! As you can imagine they were quite thrilled.

DAY THREE

Falling Up - Falling Up unfortunately didn't put on quite as good a show as they did last year. HOWEVER, they were still pretty decent, worth seeing I suppose. It was also their current guitarist's first show. Funniest moment: Getting asked for a 'one more song' and then coming out and explaining that they didn't know any more of their own songs (Alicia's theory: what this really means isn't that none of them know the songs but rather that they don't collectively know enough, which given the new guitarist would be understandable). So they played this slow one with the lead guy playing keys and the guitarist apparently improv-ing as best as possible. I have to give their singer props for actually being able to play something, though.

Hawk Nelson - I don't know if any of us expected to be there longer than ten-twenty minutes of Hawk Nelson's show. However, their fairly decent dose of tongue-in-cheek attitude and pretty decent energy kept us going until almost the end of the show. We started packing up during the encore, but still. Pretty impressive.

More on the not-strictly-music stuff will come tomorrow, I think.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

What the Hetts?! #10: They Can DO That?

Apparently they've apologized for it, but they ought to be called on it. Because it wasn't a breach, wasn't an accident--oh no, they did it totally on purpose.

Pretty much anything you've ever looked for on AOL may have been among searches done by the 657,427 accounts whose search results were released by AOL. Granted, all of the data is credited to anonymous numbers, but as an article quoted on Slashdot points out, much of that "anonymity" could be easily removed due to the highly personal nature of information that gets entered into search engines, including but not limited to names, addresses, social security numbers, and who is looking for information on how to kill their wives. Your call as to which says more about humanity--the release of these searches or what they contain. AOL's taken them down now but they're still on the internet; I have no idea how legally they are so, but still.

"What the Hetts?!"

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

What the Hetts?! #9: Celebrity Celibacy

In the first of a double-dosage of "What the Hetts!?" this week:

Paris Hilton is now out there claiming that, for one year, she will be going celibate. Apparently she is allowing herself to kiss but not to go any further. Among other thoughts in the article: She feels she can relate to Princess Diana what with the media attention, and apparently she's only 'had' two men in her lifetime. Read the article in the link for this and more, including the picture they chose, which I believe is probably one of the best they could've picked given their topic.

There's another one of these coming on Thursday.

"What the Hetts?!"

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Oh, it is true.

Europe in six days for me with the soccer team. I am wary. I am excited as well.

Immediately after the trip, school starts! Crazy stuff, eh? I am somehow looking forward to school more as I get closer to the first day...

Yep, that be the news from Joel's world, excluding much.

And, oh... It's true.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

What the Hetts?! #8: ESP Tests

Well, this story on Slashdot is certainly interesting, if nothing else. I actually followed the links a bit on this one and found the original story that their original story was based on. Basically, they were testing people in a "scientfic" manner for telepathy.

The gist of it is that they put people in different rooms and had them do this virtual reality thing where they had to pick a certain object in the room and try to "transmit" it to another person in another room. The other person in the other room then had to try and figure out which object was being "transmitted." Quite an interesting experiment, to say the least, but it makes me wonder why people are even testing this.

I really don't know exactly how "scientific" the method is, but on the surface I'm quite skeptical of how much so it can be by the nature of what they're testing for.

"What the hetts?!"

Saturday, July 15, 2006

GUESS WHAT

This blog is officially not dead.

Nothing MUCH to write about, though. Something will come.

I'll try at least to start doing "What the Hetts?!" again on Thursdays.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

My Mother, the Gamer

To this day, my Mom has logged over sixty hours of playtime with Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door. It's kind of funny, because she used to talk about hating the traditional RPGs. (She did however play through The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, in fact finishing it before I did.) I know it's not totally traditional, but it's enough to make me laugh a bit. Sixty hours. For the record, I think that comes to over twice my playtime on that game. Unfortunately my Gamecube is having trouble right now, which is a bit of a shame because she's on the last boss--just that close to beating the whole game. It's not guaranteed to work or not to work, is the thing. In other game-related news, I did a bit of research and found out Tales of Symphonia is in the "Used" stage. Hopefully I'll be able to find it somewhere, and hopefully the Cube's not totally busted by that time. At the very least I hope my Mom can finish Paper Mario before that happens.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

One down! and other things!

Acting monologue, 1min30sec of goodness. It came out all right, though I blanked on one line...twice...but the class thought the whole thing was funny, so it's all good.

4 or so to go...

I mean finals, of course. To celebrate this miniscule accomplishment to and entertain thee, I've decided to link some funny videos. Note: they are funny to me. Realize that they may not, in fact, be funny to you, the reader.


- a webcomic, actually...pretty funny... :
http://www.penny-arcade.com/2006/04/21

- various funny videos:
http://youtube.com/watch?v=uxkr4wS7XqY (haha look at the funny fight scene!)
http://thekwoon.com/theater/FanimeCon.mov (haha look at the anime dorks!)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GydbEUAA5Mg (haha funny dude!)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VpU8f26XZOo (haha another funny dude!)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rSUkBHT6u34 (haha fny dramatists/comedians!)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r_7DgQVGNwg (haha wait for it, wait for it!)
http://partycentralusa.net/videos/tuesday_qt.html (haha the 3rd funny dude!)


It's been a long time since I last 'blogged.' (I feel a bit dumb saying blogged...) Isn't it just a kind of weird thing, blogging?... I mean I'm fine with it, but just speaking about it is...weeeird. Know what I mean???

Have a nice day!
- Joel out.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

What the Hetts?! #7: Crazy Stuff

Pre-Reading: ANY guesses or questions as to who the source is will be deleted immediately to protect the source's privacy. Should I discover the source to be in error I will correct this post via a future post.

I heard today from a reliable source that a student at LaSalle High School was caught recently with two rifles in his car--and ammunition. Apparently he was going to bring them in at lunchtime. I don't know much more on that.

Here's the kicker--he was only suspended.

"What the Hetts?!"

Thursday, April 13, 2006

What the Hetts?! #6: Doubt is no Benefit

The latest bizarre case comes from a young boy, age six, who called 911 to report that his mother was having serious health problems and had collapsed. Rather than taking him seriously, the 911 operator thought that the kid, Robert, "was playing on the phone." (Italics mine.) So of course the worst possible thing, the poor kid's mom's death, was the result. Now there's a lawsuit being brought against Detroit for wrongful death. The attorney representing Robert notes that "Robert did exactly what he was taught to do."

Even given the age of the kid, it seems awfully careless tha the operator chose not to give him the benefit of the doubt. I know I'd prefer to answer a prank once in awhile (are 6-year-olds even capable of that, criminally?) as if it were serious than to let someone die. I know I don't want operators like that working in Portland. By the way, if you want it, the full story is here.

"What the Hetts?!"

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Experiences of Werewolves

John McCarthy: An atheist doesn't have to be someone who thinks he has a proof that there can't be a god. He only has to be someone who believes that the evidence on the god question is at a similar level to the evidence on the werewolf question.

I am forced to wonder who has ever been crucified upside-down as St. Peter, persecuted and killed as certain Buddhist monks in Tibet, shot and speared as Chrsitians missionaries so often are, or stereotyped as terrorists as the Muslims are, simply because they believe in werewolves. And I would submit that perhaps this puts the god question on a level that is different: People claim experiences of werewolves, but those experiences don't call them to martyrdom. While the logic of the quotation seems to hold (I could elaborate my argument for that if asked) I wonder which athiest would honestly believe that justification which McCarthy submits.

Now back to figure out what's going on in that Calc problem. It's polar coordinates if you want or care to know.

Goodnight and God bless.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

What the Hetts?! #5: Every Tongue Shall Confess...or a Security Breach Will

Warning. Subjects discussed in links (indirectly, here) may be inappropriate for children under 10.5 or so years of age.

Wow. Talk about a great revealing of peoples' sins.
This is definitely a fairly significant breach of security and privacy. Part of me wants to smile, being reminded of the idea that, one day, all sins will be revealed, and thinking of all those old sermons about how, if you don't pray to God, allow Him to convince you to reveal something to someone--even if only in accountability--then Satan will pick a time. Not that there's no flaw in that--it's possible and even plausible that some of those whose names appear on this list have since repented and are working through the issue with different forms of accountability.

Obviously, either way, this breach of security isn't acceptable. But it's still sort of interesting that of all the services that could have had this breach, it was the ignominous service.

"What the Hetts?!"

Thursday, March 02, 2006

What the Hetts?! #4: H&R Mental Block AND Phase III Begins

Slashdot reports that H&R Block, that tax-return firm that's always talking about how much money it can save you, has actually managed to "[goof] on its own taxes," which I find to be an amazing feat for a tax-return firm. Not only did the goof on their own taxes, but the amount apparently hovers around $32 million. So if they save you money, will you end up owing it in the future?

What the Hetts?!

Also, Phase III begins now as the Bib-Trad paper is done, and is about to be turned in. Phase III consists of me trying to make it to see at least a bit of CJ's performance and a bit of the tail end of Christie Pub as well, while cramming for a Persuasion and Leadership midterm and finishing a Spanish dialogue. And when I'm done with this feat, I'm going to breathe fire and swallow four swords. Heheh, four swords. Zelda reference. After Phase III comes Phase IV: Operation Don't-Get-Killed-by-the-Dialogue-or-Midterm. Why of all the times to get an actual 1-2 minute Spansh dialogue NOT over the weekend did I have to get it on this Wednesday? This is, seriously, the first bigger dialogue I've ever gotten that I didn't have at least a weekend to do.

It's sad. This week, the usual Physics quiz doesn't have me worried one bit. Not because, as in some weeks, it shouldn't. Because everything else is so much worse.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Phase II: BIB-TRAD

Phase II: Bib-Trad paper. Write paper using what sources I scrounge up. Take short break to go to Cove with a friend (by short break I mean <= 30 minutes or so), who is mad about not being able to have meat in the commons on Ash Wednesday, an issue which I’ll explore sometime after the persuasion test on Friday. Tomorrow is Phase III, which is a bit relaxed early-on, and Friday is Phase IV, or Phase Try-Not-to-Die-From-Persuasion-Midterm. Once the plan is complete, I’m less bogged down and only need to implement the neverending Phase [n in Roman Numerals]: establish better study habits.

k-po said: distractions....hmmm. what can we do to help you stay focused on the #1 priority and then work down the list to the least of the priorities. i could come and visit you and act real weird and scare all your friends away so they will leave you alone and then you can study.

Please don’t.And remember that it could backfire on you like when you visited at DLSNC. My friends might actually like you. Again.

if you would just get your work done first you would see that you will actually have MORE time for socializing. But we live in a society where we want what we want and we want it RIGHT NOW. Instant gratification. What you think you want right now and give in to will bite you in the butt later when you are up late, tired and scrambling to get homework done. Then you are kicking yourself about the choice you made to par-tay your studying/sleeping hours away.

A-ME-HEH-HEH-HEHN, sister.

There is always time and there is always someone to talk to. There is not always time to get your work done.

True, true. That’s part of the reason I always try not to put stuff off till the due day (exception: Bib-Trad editing is happening tomorrow, but unless I discover I wrote a total crock of a paper in the morning that won’t be an issue.) Once you go to sleep, you really cut down on the time you have. And yes, I know that’s not the point.

If you get your work done you will be less stressed in those social situations and will be able to enjoy them more because you are not thinking about all the HOMEWORK you need to be doing in the quiet of your OWN room - not at the cova, cova cabana where there are TOO many distractions. and what about the women. what is going on there. hopefully nothing because that is the biggest distraction and biggest time waster. i know. i am one :P)love you. now get to work!!!!!!

Okay. (Sometimes I do leave the Cove to go to Christie’s study rooms, but that’s more an issue of lateness than anything else. Why not my room? My roommate is a light sleeper.

llgp said: Amen. And I'm praying for you. Amen.

Thanks much.

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

I'm Posting from the Library and Boy am I Busy

I'd planned on doing something uber-special for the 100th post, but I'll have to do something gimmicky instead, because this is the 100th post. So maybe Morgan and I can do the uber-retrospective post at, like, #105 or something.

Here's life: I'm starting in about five minutes research on a Bib-Trad paper (which, by the magic of being-able-to-use-my-own-interpretation-some, doesn't need as much research as the other), then continuing to Physics, probably at the Cove sometime around 12:00.

Wednesday is going to be busy. I seriously need to find some mechanism to get myself going in the mornings on the Tuesdays/Thursdays, because that might have saved me the Bib-Trad research I'm set to do now.

Here's more life: I've also got Spanish reading, but I've got a couple hours in the morning. So I can allot like 30 minutes of that to sleep (after breakfast) and then the rest of the time before 10:20 to studying Spanish. Then I use time between Spanish and Persuasion and Leadership to come up with review questions for the test. Ask said questions in Persuasion, taking massive note of what's going on so I don't totally screw myself over on Friday's midterm. Work as hard and fast as possible on Physics Lab (take that cleanly) Avoid going to Mass tomorrow (as I did today, but partly on the recommendation of a peer leader) because I don't have time then, either. Pray. Manage to get Bib-Trad paper done because all the Math HW will require is doing a bit of correction. Do anything possibly left on Bib-Trad paper on Thursday before class, and start reviewing for Persuasion midterm before class too. Pray that whatever quiz Physics professor gives is just an oxcarp quiz with no real content and that whatever Spanish professor dictates for Friday is merciful, because--lucky me--I get to go to Open Lab on Thursday to make sure I don't fall behind in labs any more than I already am.

(Sidenote there: I totally split from all groups as far as labs go, so I'm adjusting to solo lab-work. Depending on how stuff goes I might try and find a new lab-group...it won't be my old one, but not because I don't like my old group, but because a good friend's in that group so I'm too distracted.)

AND MORE LIFE: On Friday, fulfill minimal Calc/Spanish obligations, go to Persuasion and try not to fail the test (for bonus points I'll even try to get a good grade) AND doasmuchlabworkaspossibleinmyphysicslabandifthat'snot
donethenIcangointoopenlabontheweekendAND

hope that open lab's actually open this Sunday, as opposed to last Sunday when I couldn't get in.

Next week, be in a healthier homework cycle and free of the burdens of gigantic papers/stressful midterms, make an effort to watch Scrubs and go to hall mass Tuesday (neither of which I did today) and cut down on the Sudoku puzzles, especially during the week.

AND MORE LIFE: Don't worry, this one's cool. After Bib-Trad today I asked a couple of questions about reading and about the upcoming Thursday paper and I was complimented on my previous paper by my professor, which just about made my day. I'd rather not go into more detail than that here, because it's the internet and such. But it feels really good to hear you wrote a good paper.

Also, I had two queries involving the statement "You're a math major, right?" or something equivalent this week. One was being asked at the Philosophy table about the existence of numbers, the other was being asked about a derivative. Still, it's good to feel smart.

Okay, so it took me more than 5 minutes to write this. Look for a What the Hetts?! posting on Thursday, as that won't take too long to do. If you want to talk to me about something I should have time, but keep in mind I don't have a whole lot.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

What the Hetts?! #3: Dangerous Wi-Fi

Recently a story from Slashdot said that a Canadian university had banned wi-fi internet access due to possible health concerns. This article, a link from Slashdot, has the University official giving a further rationale. I know this is a sort of lame "what the hetts?!" moment, as it's not quite as absurd as the other two, but this is what I've got.

I guess I'd better start getting stuff checked out whenever I visit the Cove or Library, as each place offers a lot of Wi-Fi...

"What the Hetts?!"

Friday, February 17, 2006

What the Hetts?! #2: Drunk in Eastern Europe

In Vienna, Austria, a few birds began flying into buildings and, as a result, dying. Some people feared this was an effect of the avian flu. However, more research showed that this was not the case--the real situation was much funnier.

The birds were drunk.

"What the hetts?!"

Thursday, February 09, 2006

What the Hetts?! #1: Contrary to Common Sense

"What the Hetts?!" is a sort of family joke stemming from a cousin's pronunciation of the phrase "What the Heck". I've decided that every Thursday, I'm going to try and find a "What the Hetts?!" moment to share with my family and friends. This week is one that I've already shared with many of you. This one involves a prepubescent boy being suspended for an act which, for prepubescent boys, is by common sense impossible, except in the most depraved situations.

Oh yeah, and the kid should definitely be taught that it's inappropriate. But both genders of kids should be taught not to invite it or to do it. And suspending a child of this age of either gender for something of this magnitude seems a tad...over-the-top.

"What the Hetts?!"

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

From the Library

I just thought you all should know that although I do have Bib-Trad due tomorrow and a Physics Test on Friday I am certainly not dead. Whether I go to the Christie Hall retreat, at this point, depends upon whether or not I get too much homework.

With all luck my basic draft of the Bib-Trad paper is finished tonight, meaning I can work on editing tomorrow between classes and turn it in. Once that whole fiasco's done, all that's left is to look at stuff for Physics (could take a few seocnds) and probably get a jump-start on whatever Math I get that day. Oh, and finish whatever I'm putting off from today so that I can get this paper done. At the time of writing this, it's about 2 1/2 pages done.

I shall continue to write things.

-Update: I'm actually making decent headway, and might be able to start slacking off (i.e. be done with this basic draft) by around 11:00 PM. Theoretically at that point I should do other homework, but I think at this point I'll just squeeze it in on Thursday. (this update as far as I know happened a bit before 9:00 PM.)

-Update #2: Okay, I slacked some. The good news is that I'm about to hit five pages and am on my concluding paragraph. So I might need to make it longer if a lot gets edited out, -but- at this point I'm good.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

More Academic Realizations

(Upon reading this post you might wonder why I'm taking the time to blog. Relax, dear reader. Most of the Physics is done at this point. This is approximately a ten-minute break before Spanish, and I've been working decently up till this point.)

After another late night at the Cove (the assignment didn't get finished then, but should be finished to the best of my ability by class time. It's physics, which means certian problems I'm just not getting at all, some I'm getting most or all of, and the rest are in-betweens)--after another late night at the Cove I decided to apply a sort of Biblical instruction to the academics...I'm going to do my homework as if I were doing it for the Lord. What this means is my planner-book is going to get used a lot more. I've even deveoped a generic notation, which gives the class's three-letter subject abbreviation, a date, and what I'm supposed to do with it (B for begin, if it's the first day of the assignment, W for work on it, if it's a weeklong assignment like Physics, and F for finish if the assignment needs to be done that day.) There's also a date, which tells me which date to check in my assignment book or syllabus for the actual assignment. Oddlly enough, those are all grade symbols--but I trust those who see the book will see the difference.

Anticipations:

I anticipate that the inital Physics homework will be at a mediocre-to-slightly-above average range. Again, I'd like to note that the way I put off the Physics homework was unacceptable to myself--maybe not as much as it is for my folks, but it still is to me--and that it's that assignment primarily which prompted me to start the above habit. I anticipate that the initial Physics lab will be fine, however. There's also some small extra credit I can do this semester, basically whenever someone comes to speak about Physics things. So I'll be taking up at least one of those offers, more if I discover there's more extra credit.

Spanish is going pretty well. I'm really enjoying the class. I survived my first oral presentation as far as the personal aspect of those things goes, but I don't have the academic evaluation yet, so we'll see how that goes. If I did anything major wrong, it's the length. I felt like I was very short with my presentation.

Calculus is...I'm doing the homework. I don't know how his grader works yet, so I can't really say much in that department. That's another subject I could probably use to work a little harder on.

Persuasion is going alright. I'm enjoying the class enough, and I just finished today's assignment this morning. I'm not sure how I'm going to do on it, though. I'm being asked for a fairly specific sentence format, and I'm not sure if I followed it closely enough. If I tried to cram everything in it seemed the sentence got quite awkward. I'll find out what I need to do different when I get the assignment back, I suppose.

Theology isn't going too badly. I actually wrote that analysis before I was supposed to, and in a string of events I'll share later I wound up sharing the Mark transfiguration passage with another person in Biblical Traditions. The good news there is that I've got that done with, so I only have two readings plus the one I managed to miss on the weekend's syllabus to do today / before 2:30 tomorrow. Although I think that would actually be today, because they're marked "F" on the to-do list. I really need to change it to something like "BEG" "WRK" and "FIN"--it's got too much potential to give the wrong impression.

Anyway, off to Spanish. Good day and God bless.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Please Feel Free to Nag

I started off my first week on a good note, doing quality work in my Spanish class, doing my best to pay attention to Calculus assignments and do them, and working well in the other three classes as well. However, by Thursday I found myself slipping into some old habits, which continued through today. (The notable exceptions: I not only did the Spanish homework for Friday, I later found out I didn't even have to do it. And I did have everything else that was required on Friday done by classtime Friday (and in the practical sense on Friday, although the Spanish I believe to have strecthed into the early AM hours. Also, I've got my THE 205 readings done for the weekend.) I've decided that I need to establish some more concrete goals academically. "Do better in school" isn't gonna cut it, really. As much as I'll regret this I am giving adult commentators on the blog (and other youth/young adults, if you are still reading this and really want to) permission to nag me via blog comments about whether I've done what needs doing that day, and maybe even a bit more. And now comes the thing I promised, except only to my parents. Here's how courses sound after Week 1 (in the order that they first appear on the schedule.) Commentators who know other things about the professors not mentioned here are asked to keep them to themselves...I'm trying to maintain their anonymity. And while naming my friends with first names doesn't really give them away, doing that or last names with professors will...Please just don't mention stuff about the professors unless I mention it first.

MTH 202 - Calculus II. I like this professor. He seems cool. The course picks up a bit before where my high school Calculus class left off. I actually have Thursday's and Friday's homework to do for this one this weekend, because the days it's due are Monday and Thursday and, as said before, my old habits made a hopefully brief return.

SPN 302 - Conversational Spanish. I like this class. Got an oral presentation this Monday, which hopefully will not kill me. But my first written assignment got full credit, which was awesome. The one she showed before it was an example of less-than-full-credit work, so when I saw mine up on the board I thought I was going to get...well, less-than-full-credit. But then the professor began talking about the vocabulary and the structure and said it had gotten full credit. Basically, written assignments won't be so much of a problem if I do what I did with this one--actually put some effort in, dictionary included--and on top of that proofread for what Spanish errors I do know how to catch. The professor for this class is cool...she has a decently-thick accent, but that'll be better for me in the long run.

CST 100 - Communication and Leadership. My professor calls it communication to emphasize that leadership isn't just about persuasion but also about dialogue, to suggest that it should be more about democratic meetings and less about authoritarian orders. Something like that, anyway. I despise one of my textbooks, but I'll take away one or two things from it. I love the other textbook, because the guy talks to me like I'm a human being and not just an information processor. My understanding is I need to read the next chapter of each textbook for next week, or something along those lines. This professor seems cool and seems interested in helping us learn the material.

PHY 205 - General Physics II. This is a different format from the last one. This time there's lecture for an hour and then an hourlong lab. It's stuff that we started covering about 2/3rds of the way through senior Physics, stuff about energy and coulombs and all that jazz. Vectors are involved. I'm not sure, but it sounds like some students take Vector Calculus in conjunction with or before taking Physics II. Homework's due Wednesday, but after the other stuff's done I'll make sure to at least look it over and start doing some problems. The professor for this class actually told us they wanted to hear us talking about the example problems, as opposed to telling us not to talk at all, which was a nice surprise.

THE 205 - Biblical Tradition and Culture. Also known as "BibTrad" this huge-honkin' class has a reputation for huge-honkin' papers. I've chosen my passage, picked my poison, as it were. I'm doing my paper/analysis thing on the transfiguration. The class should actually be alright, especially considering as a Freshman in BibTrad I'm sort of unexpected. But I won't really know for a bit. The thing that's due Tuesday for this class is an analysis of the wording of the passage. The professor is nice and seems cool. I had a bit of trouble staying awake in class Thursday, which was my fault for being up so late. Hey, I'm doing it again!

Finally should I find much spare time tomorrow I need to begin Alice's Adventures in Wonderland again. I should probably just start from the start again. The guy whose Alice's Adventures in Wonderland I have has my copy of Orthodoxy. It should be fun, because we've each got books that mean a lot to us that we're getting the opportunity to share with each other.

I also need to work on establishing a routine for my current Megazeux project, which is a trading-card game as-of-yet officially unnamed. Not sure what it'll be yet, but at this point the plan is to establish that along with other things, such as eating fewer unhealthy things and doing homework in a more efficient manner.

That's the latest post. Enjoy.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Well...

I'm sitting in the room in Ed 1...the old tv lounge...music is blasting to my right as Kent shares with two dudes the finer points of rock music... On the 32" tv in front of me, the film Four Brothers awaits my press of the play button, as I await the end of the music...
///
now it's movietime...peace, peeps...!

Saturday, January 07, 2006

New Post!

It's been forever, hasn't it? I've been re-reading John Irving's A Prayer for Owen Meany, and it's almost as much fun as the first time. I'm noticing more of the foreshadowing this time around, since I've already read to the end. The unfortunate thing is that I saw a movie based upon the book (loosely...it's called Simon Birch) about five years ago, so even on the first reading I knew how the book was, on a basic level, going to end. I won't spoil that here. I'd recommend this book...I could probably even lend it to someone, once I'm done with this read-through.

I also have read the first few pages of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, but have to pick it up again, probably next week sometime, and finish it. Owen Meany distracted me.