I think I saw this somewhere else a while back, but it's nice to be reminded. There will be a new bike trail through Dinkytown next to the University of Minnesota. It has been a rail right-of-way forever, so it wasn't really legal to go down there before, but I rode my bike that way to St. Anthony Main a few times. I'm not sure if they'll connect it with the roadway there, but it would be nice. Of course, this might make getting there worse, as they might put up a fence or something to prevent that.
Aaa! This Beck song rocks! Except that you have to get the Hell Yes EP to get it. I personally dislike EPs with a vengeance, but maybe I'll learn to like them. ("Bad Cartridge" is a remix of "E-Pro" from Beck's forthcoming album that was remixed by Paza and released on vinyl and at the iTunes Music Store—it might not even be available on CD for all I know, though maybe it'll be a hidden track or something).
Thorn at KCMP just asked if anyone knows where the game sounds come from. I agree with him that it basically sounds like Mario Bros., but I'm not a gamer.
City Pages has a few decent articles about 89.3 today. They're at the collection "A Real Rock 'n' Roll Station... for Your Pledge of Just $10 a Month?"
Update: As always, I lost my train of thought while posting. I meant to include this quote from the second article:
Newly minted Current groupies have mobilized on the station's online message boards. ... Another recent post speaks of "mass multiple orgasms" brought on by the Current's frequency. This is possibly the first time anyone's ever dropped their panties over public radio, Garrison Keillor fetishists notwithstanding.Getting to the last bit first: Yeeeccchhh! As for the other bit, I saw people mention that more than once and considered mentioning it myself—in the first few days, it was definitely hitting my brain's pleasure center hard. Amazing how music can do that. I don't understand why the big media conglomerates don't recognize it though.
Well, it appears that Deep Throat is dying. Seems appropriate, considering that a documentary about the movie for which the informant is named is now making the art-house theater rounds...
My website is still acting funny. We'll see if I ever fix it.
Whenever I play Tetris, I'm reminded of the girl I had a crush on in high school. This is because I used to play it with a friend, and he usually lost or cheated. If I was doing better than him, he'd do say things along the lines of "I heard she's going swimming today. Have you ever seen her in a swimsuit? Go ahead, visualize that."
And then I'd promtly start screwing up.
From today's spam pile:
As you read this, I don't want you to feel sorry for me, because, I believe everyone will die someday.Eh? Mmmmkay...
Despite the fact that it's less than 1/5th complete and that I still don't have a job, 2005 is turning into the Best Year Ever. Oh, let me count the ways:
Well, I should talk to these people at Cray about work. That would be quite the kicker.
Update: Oh yeah, I did get a free trip to California too, even though I had to drive halfway.
I just had to laugh at my pile of Netflix movies today: The Doom Generation, Eyes Wide Shut, and then the eighth disc of the Monty Python TV series. Seems to reflect my bizarre moods lately, though.
Er, not that I even fully know what those two movies are about, so we'll see if I feel the same way later.
My long national nightmare is over, aside from a few mop-up operations in the South Pacific.
Okay, no, I didn't declare statehood, but over the last decade I've drawn myself through more emotions that at least a few city-states. Apparently it turns out that I've got a thing for artists, teachers, and healthcare professionals. No, I'm not referring to any nurse fetish, but thanks for the thought. My high school crush is working to help the disabled, and she's married with a kid. I'm mostly just glad she's safe—I worried about that sometimes. Now the film that has flipped through my mind so many times has an ending, which is good.
The knowledge helps me more clearly see the strands that connect the personalities of the different girls I've liked over the years. I was amazed when she said she was working with the disabled. There are remarkable parallels between her life and that of the other big crush I had, which I never expected. Then again, there might not be a whole lot of meaning to it.
I could wish that something had gone differently years ago, but I was so certain of fate back then that if anything actually did happen, I'd probably be a full-fledged believer in witches and wizards by now. Hey, at least I would have fit in with the Harry Potter/Lord of the Rings crowds ;-) No, those thoughts have to do their ride off into the sunset.
Anyway, my mind is a syrupy mix of different thoughts today, and various things will be bubbling to the surface for a while. I'm going to be sleeping a lot, but I'll try to at least get out to a movie tonight, despite my budget.
So after a little Googling, I found that the cigarette girl in The Aviator was in fact not Jean Harlow played by Gwen Stefani but rather the character Thelma played by Josie Maran. Uh, who? Well, maybe I'd know who she was if I had a subscription to FHM or something, since she seems to mostly be a model. Like Kate Beckinsale (who played Ava Gardner), she seems to have gotten into the monster movies and was in Van Helsing (Beckinsale was in Underworld). Kind of annoying that they look totally different in their Aviator appearances than in any other images you'll find, mostly due to the "movie magic" of wigs and caked-on makeup.
I took Keen Eddie over to Dan's place yesterday so we could hang out and watch that, then we went with Josh, Kari, and Laura to see Ong-Bak. It's a pretty awesome martial arts film and had a lot of surprises for those guys since it demonstrates some Thai forms rather than the Chinese and Japanese stuff they're more accustomed to. There was an unpleasant scene with a girl that almost ruined things for me just because it distantly echoed something I worried about over the years, but the fight scenes were amazing and it's worth seeing just for that.
Oh! I don't know if anyone else caught it, but there was a shout out to Steven Spielberg. On a garage door in one scene it said "Hi Spielberg" and below that "Let do it together." That's apparently verbatim, I didn't quite catch it at first, but that's what IMDB says. It's possible that the message was added digitally and was not really there while filming.
After about an hour of sitting around with our stomachs grumbling, Dan, Laura, Kari, and I went to the Macaroni Grill at Rosedale. We almost hit a bar stool that was sitting in the parking lot! I guess some guy took two from the restaurant, but forgot one or something.
It was good to be out with friends, especially relatively unattached ones (no couples were together). I had wanted Sarah to come along, but I realized later that it could have easily been burdensome for me. I must make an effort to hang out in the coming weeks, though I can't afford to go to movies and eat out every time these days.
At least the Minneapolis smoking ban will go into effect soon, so then I'll be more comfortable trying out some of the music venues in the area. Now that we have a radio station that actually plays songs by bands who are coming through town, I might manage to get out. I've just always been under the impression that it's expensive to see music. Okay, it would often be as bad as going out to a movie and getting food, but at least it's more social than sitting in a theater.
Oh god. I just randomly went to KMSP's website and got a flash ad saying that A Current Affair is returning to the airwaves. I pray for our species.
I spent a few minutes flipping through channels to find something interesting, but didn't have luck sticking with anything. Wrong time of hour, and it's impossible to get good stuff during the day anyway. Still, a few cool things popped up. I saw the tail end of something involving Mesaba Airlines (a regional Northwest carrier) and MSP airport. Apparently that was some press related to the deployment of TAMDAR sensors on 64 aircraft in the fleet. Pretty cool that they could fit sensors and a satellite transmitter into a 1.5 pound (⅔ kg) package. They use them to create a flying network of observation stations (figuring out weather anywhere above ground is often a challenge, simply because there hasn't been anything there). Here's a TAMDAR press release. Hmm. I guess they call it the "Great Lakes Fleet Experiment."
The other thing I came across was the last five minutes of Patrick Stewart's appearance on Saturday Night Live. Honestly, if it wasn't for SNL, I'm sure I'd have dropped E! from my TV's channel lineup by now. I don't watch very often, especially since 89.3 launched, but it's still a good show from time to time. Eventually I'll have to see that episode, and I think Bob Dole's appearance was a pretty notable one too. I wonder if anyone keeps a ranking of some of the best SNL episodes somewhere. There are too many episodes to watch all of them, and besides they're often not that great—The Daily Show ranks a lot higher on my laugh meter most of the time.
I've never understood why daylight savings time comes in summer. I'm sure there's a logical explanation, but all I ever want is to have light appear in my bedroom at a consistent time of day. Uh, yeah, that's impossible. I really do want to get an alarm clock that can do that for me, though. They're not a common item, but there do exist devices that will simulate a sunrise. I was kind of wondering why I was able to wake up so early the last few days. It's been clear and sunny, which is a nice change.
A copy of Anything Else came in the mail today from Netflix, and I watched it this morning. I'm not feeling all that empathetic lately, so maybe I'll hate the film later, but my funnybone is still active and I thought it was very humorous. I suppose it's a relationship movie about a non-relationship, so it came at an opportune time. With this film, I could vaguely consider Jason Biggs to be a John Cusack of a slightly younger generation, but I wouldn't carry that idea too far. There was a happy ending, I think, but that part was much more true to life than your standard boy-meets-girl flick (er, aside from Woody Allen's character going wacko, but that's kind of separate).
I sent out some correspondence yesterday evening that will probably come back to haunt me, but it's still important. Then again, my mind keeps changing like crazy, so I may be feeling differently as responses float in. Well, it's a vaguely High Fidelity thing. It's not "what does it all mean?"—that's a stupid question—but it's not far enough away from that for me to be comfortable in my queries.
Jeff Hanson makes some great music, but it is truly freaky because his voice sounds like a girl. Take a listen to "Just Like Me". Of course, 89.3 listeners may have already heard some of his stuff.
I guess this is the inaugural entry in my "Music2" category, since I can't add any more to the regular "Music" one. I guess some process got interrupted once, and my database is messed up. This is just a stopgap measure.
Our brains are remarkable pattern-finding devices. Too bad there isn't always anything there. In the summer between 9th and 10th grades, I watched the movie Toys as a rental. My brain latched onto one of the scenes where a security guard was at his console. I dreamt of a console that night, though instead of TV monitors, it had a weird clock on it. This clock had a strange way of operating, with labeled LEDs each indicating a time ten minutes apart.
The ones up through 11:00 were lit, and the one for 11:10 was blinking. That morning, I decided to return the video so I would be in my hometown's little business district by the time 11:10 rolled around. I think I was expecting the world to end or aliens to land or something bizarre like that (as if extraterrestrial tourists would pick a town of 2,500 people to be their first stopping point). Nope. But at 11:06, I saw that girl I liked.
Later that day, I wondered if there was some hidden meaning in the time of day when I saw her. You should never do that. I worked out the number of minutes in the day up until that point, and came up with the number 666. I'll avoid trying to apply that observation in any way. That was perhaps the first "premonition" I had, and it came complete with its own warning.
Still, that summer, I couldn't avoid numbers. Maybe I had been too taken in by my math courses over the years or something. It had been over a month since school let out for the summer, and I didn't expect to see her again until I returned to taking classes. Within a few weeks, I'd seen her twice more, and thought I saw another pattern: the time between each event was being cut in half. Well, not exactly in half. The first time, there was a space of 35 or 36 days. Then it was 18. Followed by 9.
As Heisenberg's famous principle states, I couldn't observe this without making an effect of my own. The spacing did eventually dwindle down to just one or two days apart, but by that point I had partial control over the situation. It was a pattern, but the idea that there could be any meaning to it was totally invalid. Of course, it didn't help that you can't subdivide beyond 9 without getting into trouble. 4.5 days? How can you measure that? Oh, I'm sure statisticians could find some tricks—definitely something that makes you doubt numbers and shows that they can lie ;-)
So, I had a few of those things happen over the years, which just made things worse. Not many float above the noise, though. I was wrong at least as often as I was right. I dreamt she changed her hair color one night. She did, and I even got the color right—red. (I think I told her about that one, which is just...bad.) I dreamt that her boyfriend was convicted in some trial and sentenced to serve 51 or 52 days (maybe 151 or 152—the memory has faded). Well, he was still around the next day.
Dreams didn't happen very often. I wanted them to, but that wasn't the way things worked. Subject matter left something to be desired as well: The most common theme involved catching a fleeting glimpse, then running around to find where she disappeared to.
Wow, it's amazing I can remember this. I suppose I'm writing it down so that I can finally allow myself to forget. Just another step in letting go. In an odd way, things continued up until the very end: I myself had forgotten about the entry that got her attention, but stumbled across it again last week, likely within a day of when she did. The night before I finally heard from her, I prayed to finally know what she thought or at least get a glimpse of who the mysterious person in my future will be. Of course, it doesn't count, since I had made the same request of some higher power countless times in the past. I now know one part. I just hope that finding my future won't take another decade.
This probably happens to everybody, but I sometimes get feelings that seem to be totally disconnected from what I'm going through at a particular moment. I'd been pretty down this morning, but around 1 or 1:30, I just started feeling great. Heh, it's probably just because I turned on the radio ;-)
Erin wrote me a very honest note about how I pissed her off. Eesh. Sorry. I figured everyone saw me as a nice guy, albeit quiet or aloof. Well, I've got some friendship-rebuilding to do, I guess. Apologies to everyone—I've been off in my own little world, which is why I never talk about anyone else—there simply hasn't been anyone else to talk about. With repeated job trouble, I also haven't had a whole lot of spare cash, which has not exactly made me happy.
Oh well, I just have to figure out more of the free/supercheap stuff to do. I brought Keen Eddie over to Dan's place again yesterday evening, and spent some time with him, Laura, and Sarah. I'm glad they all like the show, as I haven't felt that I've had much to offer people. If I've turned them on to a cool show, that's great. They've all enjoyed seeing the actors on the show too, since many have been in other things. And, obviously the episodes just rock. I know Sarah needed the laughs.
One of Dan's roommates had us watch the Super Mario Reloaded and Final Fantasy A+ Flash animations, which were both really funny. Unfortunately, their DSL line is dog slow and they took forever to load. I just checked them right now on my cable modem, and the Super Mario one only took about 20 seconds to load. It took a few minutes last night.
Hmm. He just told me that his friends don't have or particularly want cable TV. He suggested that basic plus cable modem might be the way to go, and I'd agree.
Anyway, back to the Flash things: It's good that Dan knew how to make them nearly-full-screen. That made 'em a lot easier to enjoy, especially on the big TV ;-)
Well, that's it, I think.
It finally started snowing at my apartment at around 8 AM today. I'll always be amazed at how different weather can be between here and my hometown.
I've kind of disappeared from Wikipedia in the last week or so due to...stuff, but it's awesome that they now have more than 500,000 articles. I've made several thousand edits there myself, but they're mostly updates. Many of my contributions are "redirects"—basically aliases or shortcuts—that don't really count as anything. Still, I think I've done some pretty cool things there, like my articles on the Hiawatha Line and the old Twin Cities streetcar system. There have been a few poor design decisions made on the site, but the deficiencies are largely outweighed by other features (in my opinion, anyway). I especially like that I can (usually) just replace spaces with underscores to figure out the URLs of articles.
In other news, my mom reports 22 ½ inches of snow at home. I doubt we have more than 2 at my apartment, but I don't have a good measuring utensil handy. It's pretty remarkable, since they can still watch the same TV stations and listen to (some of) the same radio stations that I do.
I don't float by C|Net's News.com.com.com very often anymore, but they had an article early last week about an IBM MEMS device known as the Millipede. Doing some rough calculations (they only said the thing holds "the equivalent of 25 DVDs," which could mean anything), it appears that the thing has a data density of between 17 and 34 terabits per square inch. Of course, the controller board is massive (there's a slideshow), but it's just a prototype ;-)
"Spiders" by Wilco is a good track, but since it clocks in at nearly 11 minutes, I always start thinking "they're still playing Wilco?" after a while when it gets on 89.3. No biggie. Long tracks are cool, as long as they are good. Eleven minutes of minimal techno and I'd kill someone. House music is no problem, but repeating two measures on an endless loop is going to get someone impaled.
Hmm, now I'm trying to remember what track it was that Dan had years ago (back in 2000–2002) that was 25 minutes of something über-peppy. Something very video-game-ish, if I recall.
I still haven't figured out why Netflix makes a distinction between NR (not rated) and UR (unrated).
I may as well fall into being shallow for the time being and work to make girls of my past jealous of me and whoever I end up with. Of course, this is remarkably simple: 1) Get a job that actually lasts. 2) Exercise regularly. 3) Get some new eyeglasses (or do the eye surgery thing). 4) Get out of the apartment (ie, pray for the smoking ban to go into effect, and for #1).
The Eyes of Nye is bringing Bill Nye back to TV, but apparently not in the Twin Cities (yet). Of course, the site lists two stations in Minnesota as being in TC, but the ones listed are KAWB and KAWE, which serve Bemidji and Brainerd. Yeah, not quite in the same area (although multiple people have reported being able to receive 89.3 up to Brainerd, which is remarkable since the transmitter is actually on the southern end of the Cities).
I wish I had a house with a rooftop antenna. I wonder what I could pick up here that isn't from here. The Menomonee PBS station at least, I bet. I'm PBS-deficient at the moment (I grew up with at least five public stations on my TV dial ;-)
A few months back I described The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the Eighth Dimension as a Troma video with no sex. Today I half-watched and half-fast-forwarded through The Doom Generation, and would describe it as a Troma video with no monsters. Okay, I don't even know what I'm saying since I only ever saw one Troma movie that I can recall, but I suppose you only need to see that once to get the idea. I personally think it was funnier than Buckaroo Banzai, so I guess I'd rate it as the better movie.
At any rate, it's out of my pile of three discs (finally!) so I can watch some decent stuff again. Off to the mailbox.
Tonight, NBC will air the première episode of The Office (meh) featuring Steve Carrell (yayyayyay!). Oh god, I hope it's good, but I really didn't like the original British version. Too cringe-inducing. David Brent (played by Ricky Gervais) might have been the real problem for me. The show is reportedly still pretty cringe-heavy, but Carrell's version of the boss is a different take. Of course, the first episode is nearly verbatim from the BBC one, so it's hard to say how things will go. Things diverge from there, according to what I've read, so I can't just judge it by what happens tonight.
Another thought, though. Who the hell schedules a première for 8:30 PM?
Urgh. My neck has been feeling weird and I've been moody with weird stuff happening in my head since Monday or so. I'm probably sick, since this morning's stop in the bathroom brought a small surprise. Hopefully it won't develop into anything. It's weird, though, as I've been feeling as if one of my friends is in pain or trouble. Stupid mass media and their psychic storylines. You make me think silly things.
Argh. I keep playing with fire. Exempli gratia: queueing up Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness this morning. That album is so heavily tied to high school it's not even funny—if I'd been living in the age of vinyl, I would have worn it out. Of course, this also means that is strongly tied to the infatuation I had back then. Well, it was inevitable that I'd listen to it again, since the Beck/Paza track "Bad Cartridge" reminded me of "Where Boys Fear to Tread", the first track on the second disc, which includes an audio sample of the rocket blast from the video game Doom. At least "Bad Cartridge" uses video game noises to make actual music, rather than just extra noise.
One day I'll pick up Gish and Siamese Dream. I've never really been big on buying a band's whole catalog, especially since I always considered myself to be lacking monetarily. Well, my spendthrift nature is probably the only reason why I'm where I am at the moment. My bank accounts have lasted much longer than they should have.
Anyway, I was recalling hearing the title track during the 1996 Summer Olympics. It was something having to do with swimming, if memory serves. Anyway, I was vacationing up north with my parents at my grantparents' lakeside "cabin" (actually a 3-level house) at the time. Well, NBC's sports coverage always has a flair for the melodramatic, so it's not surprising that they used the track.
Oddly, a few moments earlier I had been reminded of one of the three or so visits I'd made to my high school crush's house. She was watching gymnastics, so that's a memory from just a few days earlier or later. Weird. (Oh, and by the way, my visit was not as remarkable as it might seem, since she lived right next to one of my best friends at the time. How then did I never manage to actually get to know her, you ask? Crippling shyness is the only answer.)
She'd been a Smashing Pumpkins fan, having at least one article of clothing from the band (probably two or more, but my memory might be flaking out on me). I always wonder if I like the Pumpkins on their own merits or merely because she liked them.
I am an idiot.
Some of the better ones for me: Warrior of Eternal Pits of Darkness, and Chief Shoegazer Tomahawk.
It still looks like the Minneapolis smoking ban will go into effect, which I think is good. It still might get knocked down by a higher court, but it's doubtful.
A week or so back, I did one of those silly "you are plant type x" things where you find out what character you would be in Star Trek. Mine came up as Jean-Luc Picard.
Maybe. If so, I'm the blue-shirted Ensign Picard, not the red-shirted Captain. I wish I had opened my mouth when I was 17. Heh, no artificial heart required for me, but it has been broken ever since, I suppose. Yeah, if I had a time machine, I'd go back to junior year of high school. There were so many opportunities that year, but they just slipped by because of fear and shyness. I wish that I had at least been able to get shot down gracefully face-to-face rather than the way things actually happened.
Well, I suppose other opportunities with other people come along once in a while. I may get my red shirt after all. Still, I'm scared as hell whenever it happens, and it only comes around like once a year at best. I know I need to get out more, though.
In that vein, I'd been anticipating Adam's party. My brain showed how far behind it was lagging last night. I assumed some things because I had forgotten that things had changed. Well, I'm so far out of the loop it's not surprising. I hung out with Matt for much of the evening, but mostly floated around. I did (re-)meet a few people at least, but I expected to see many more familiar faces. This is noone's fault except my own, since I had overblown my expectations as usual.
Matt and I were disappointed with the boy/girl ratio (especially the boy/unattached-girl ratio). He has similar bad luck, I guess. Well, I suppose it's not really my crowd anyway, so I shouldn't worry.
Heh, at least the music was good aside from soundcheck issues. Someone must have banged the panel as they were moving around or something. Whatever. It's about as much fun as I usually have. Blech, sorry, that sounds really mean—it's just my usual bad luck also came along for the ride. Seriously, though, Happy Birthday(s) to Adam and Jen ;-)
Another earthquake in the Indian Ocean today, this one currently estimated at an 8.7 magnitude. The previous one was 9.2 or possibly 9.3. The scale is logarithmic, so this one is considerably less intense, but still very strong. Without looking this up, I'd guesstimate somewhere around ⅓ to ¼ the energy level. This means that chances of a tsunami are low (and there have been no reports of significant wave activity).
Well, what a crummy month, eh? I was glad I caught a presentation by Neil Gershenfeld of MIT on C-SPAN in the last hour. I'd just turned on the TV in anticipation of watching The Simpsons, but got there a few minutes early and was channel-surfing. Anyway, he was discussing "How to make (almost) anything", a course he's taught for a few years now, and the concept of "fab labs" where you can make all sorts of fairly high-tech things with relatively cheap rapid prototyping tools.
Looking at the fab lab site and the Center for Bits and Atoms page at MIT, I guess my enthusiasm was tempered a bit. In the C-SPAN presentation, it sounded like there was a whole slew of these sites already, but there aren't too many listed. I suppose there are some that aren't directly affiliated with the project, though.
Well, anyway, at $20,000 a pop, a fab lab may be coming to your neighborhood anytime. I wonder if that would help me make the cereal sifter I've been thinking about for a while. Conventional hacking would probably be just as effective for that...
In other news, Mark Wheat sounds sick. Make happy requests ;-)
Here ya go: Chipotle Nutrition Calculator. Well, probably not quite as bad as I expected, but still some pretty large numbers.
Um, okay, so I don't have enough experience for this to be valid, but it's entertaining at least.
I, uh, kinda had to guess on some questions. *sigh* It's probably off (well, it's a random free test on the Internet, what do you expect?), but it still gives some moderately interesting insights. I'm curious how someone can be both adventurous and shy, though I think that I've met such women in the past. Well, geez, I just don't know enough to make the test valid in any way. Bah, it's just for entertainment anyway.
Your dating personality profile:
Practical - You are a down-to-earth individual who is not impressed with material excess. You care about the stuff of like that really matters.
Romantic - You know exactly how to melt your date's heart. Romance comes naturally to you and is an important component of any relationship you have.
Sensual - You are not particularly shy when it comes to your sexuality. You know what you like and do not feel inhibited.
Your date match profile:
Practical - You are drawn to people who are sensible and smart. Flashy, materialistic people turn you off. You appreciate the simpler side of living.
Adventurous - You are looking for someone who is willing to try new things and experience life to its fullest. You need a companion who encourages you to take risks and do exciting things.
Shy - You are put off by people who are open books. You are drawn to someone who is a bit more mysterious. You want to draw her out of her shell and get to know what she is all about.
Get your Online Dating Profile - take the quiz!
Well, since the smoking ban is now in effect, I have to bother to get out at some point. I'm not sure if I'll muster the energy tonight. I'm debating Ground Zero, but I hardly have any appropriate attire ;-) Heh, well, somewhere else would be my top choice if I lived away from here, but GZ gets high honors for being just four blocks away.