Sunday, February 27, 2005

They Should Caption Old People With What Kind of Cancer They Have

There are few greater sensations than accomplishment, no matter how pointless and useless the thing is. I don't know what the point of this is, but I do know I just finished my paper and I'm nigh euphoric even though I've got studying for my wood and fiber science test that I'm likely to fail.

I've noticed that a lot of people have the habit of focusing on the immediate temporary aspects of life. It's a pretty sensible coping mechanism: ignore long term problems and focus on the thing right in front of you.

I'm tired and I've been playing too much pinball,


Friday, February 25, 2005

Go Bleed Over There

Losing things is one of the most frustrating aspects of my life. I lose my hat, my gloves, my phone, papers, stuff I've borrowed, and other random objects constantly. I'm often seen cursing my way back to the place I just was because I left stuff there.

Usually people lose things when they deviate from their usual habits. Deviation from patterns that engrain themselves into our lives causes confusion and lost items because we'll set them down or dig in our pockets and then walk off, forgetting that we had left something laying about or fallen out of pockets and bags. Later, when we realize the object is missing, we can't recall what we did with it because it happened when we were outside of our normal routines.

For me: it's just being a dumbass. I can usually find them again, but I've lost my wallet about three times. I've now got one of those obnoxious chain wallets so I can't leave it someplace.

At the same time, I'm endlessly fascinated with found objects. Not the extent of, say, Found magazine (although they do have some amazing stuff) where they collect it, but more of a casual enjoyment. There was a beat-up sock outside of the theater building for about a week and I kept looking at it, making up something new.

Considering I've been caught staring off into space despite the presence of women I would probably rather be gawking at, me looking at random things isn't too suprising. Found shit is like people wathcing, but on a more minute scale. Making up backrounds and stories about people is fairly easy because you can see them moving about, hear them talking, that sort of thing. Objects lying on the street can be from anything, which is probably why I like looking at lost stuff in passing.


Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Shit. God Damn. Get Off Your Ass and Dance.

There's something so terribly hilarious about things not going according to plan. The whole scene of some carefully constructed motion falling flat on its face and crying like a broke ass.

That's not very clear so let me explain through an interpretive dance or example. If you select dance you'll have to envision it yourself as the photos didn't turn out too well.

Example: I'm riding a bus that is very clearly of the, "LIMITED," variety; basically it makes half the stops as a regular bus. So as I'm riding the afore mentioned bus someone next to me pulls the stop request chord as though he was requesting the stop the bus is about to pass by. Now the request itself was not unheard of, it was a busy stop for the regular bus, but this t'weren't no regula' bus, sucka. So I turn and watch as his eyes widen and the adrenaline of panic hit as the bus speeds on by his stop.

On hand, I feel bad for the guy; it sucks more ass than a rim-job fetish porn when you miss the stop you wanted, but at the same time that look of sheer unbridled panic was so awesome.

I don't like to think of it as taking joy in another's misfortune, but rather finding humor in an otherwise terrible incident. Humor itself is based on disconnects, when the expected does not happen, be it someone getting a pie in the face to cute animals tripping, it's all based on that sudden jolt our minds deliver when something funny happens.

Or I'm just rationalizing and I'm a terrible, terrible person.


Saturday, February 19, 2005

Zeal is No Excuse

"Dim lights, got a brand new distraction."
-A Whisper in the Noise
I've been sleeping and studying a lot lately.

I hate when people get really excited about something, especially when it's me. For example:

"HOLY FUCK!!! [Band Name] IS PLAYING AT [Venue] AND IT'S [Time]!!!"



I'm just as much of a perpetrator of this horrible crime, but it's still one of the most irritating things in the world. I guess it's just bizarre because I don't understand how we can love something so much as to become screaming banshees of joy. I always want to say something like, "oookay, let's calm the fuck down now," but I know I've done the same thing so I just keep my hypocriticalness to myself.

I suppose it's my hatred of zealotism. Religious zealotism, political zealotism, or personal zealotism (i.e. personality worship) strikes me as dangerous and detrimental to the safety and individual freedoms of other people. Why this transfers to pop-culture, I'm not too sure.

Maybe I'm paranoid... Maybe.... But that's not something I'd ever tell you... people; you'd use it against me.


Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Burn the Heretic, Slay the Weak

Don't read the story, just read the headline, then read the rest.

Conservatism in this country has agitated me for a while now, but lately it's had me flying off the handle at every random opportunity.

I'm fairly progressive and equal rights and recognition has always been an itch for me, so, logically this would extend to homosexuals too. So the whole, "homosexuality is bad... M'kay. Uh, if you do it, then you are bad... M'kay," infuriates me. This isn't really anything new, but today I hit it hard and fast. I'm reading the campus newspaper, which I've been tending less to do, but you know how it is: you're bored, you left your reading at home, the only thing around is the campus paper, so you pick it up and read it. Anyway, in the back they have a section where people can randomly send in emails and get made fun of. It's like Strongbad, but less funny and mostly less animated, which increases the less funny. So I'm reading through it and it's pretty much standard fair until I hit this conservative guy talking about how he's not homophobic, but - his words not mine- that he's, "...sick of them... homo-nauseas." After shouting a, "what the fuck," in my usual unrestrained volume on the bus and much blinking I come even further to grips with just how weird this whole thing is. Hate speach can be trumpeted around like it's no big deal and we're so used to it, we don't even register it as weird anymore; we are surprised if these folks don't unleash statements about the evils of homosexuality.

What gets me the most is that these people adamantly state that they aren't prejudiced in anyway. I love that; at least racists are up front about it. I guess I can't see how you can take what they say and interpret it as anything but discriminatory. Ridiculous, thank goodness I live in a bastion of progressiveness. Except for that Pawlenty bullshit, but let's not talk about that right now.


Monday, February 14, 2005

Useless Wooden Toys

I am prone to things that are technically childish. I watch cartoons, I play video games, and I randomly make snow balls and throw them at things (e.g. signs, fences, trees, parked cars, wooden statues that litter the Minnesota State Fair grounds). In truth, I feel slightly guilty that I never grew out of hurling snowy projectiles at inanimate objects. I mean, I don't really know anyone else my age that scoops up snow compacts it and flings, with questionable accuracy, it things randomly.

Well, I should say I feel guilty when someone else sees me doing it; otherwise it is one of the greatest things ever. I long for the days when I could pull together a snow ball fight and not feel wierd.

Really, society's designation of certain activites as childish has always troubled me. On one hand, it makes a lot of sense, I'm more okay with a four-year-old vomiting on my pants than I am some random person at a party. On the other, the things like aciton figures and legos are shunned by society and while I can find some understanding there, it seems bizzarre that we would limit ourselves so.

Then again, this is the same place that decries sex as naughty and evil.


Saturday, February 12, 2005

Hitler Damn It

The debate I've been focussing on lately (as a way to distract me from the imminent invasion of Iran and Social Secruity)is whether the United States is a guilt society or not. By, "guilt society," I mean the reason people do the right thing is deep-seated burning guilt of knowing what the person did was wrong (think Poe's "The Tell-Tale Heart"). There's a lot of evidence for it, Christianity tells us that god always knows what we're doing, judging us for evil deeds and vile acts we may commit.

Comparable is a shame society which relies more on the opinion of others (i.e. if someone doesn't see you do something wrong it doesn't matter).

I think philosophy would be cooler if we could manifest abstract ideas and have them fight each other.


Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Force in the Air

Cold temperatures, more sleep, an excellent couple of days, and a good bout of exercise has returned me to my state of mind.

Wind-chill is the Minnesota death power of doom. All those Norse stories about howling winds being ill omens and all that like aren't shitting; wind is awesome because it's moving air, but the devil due to its tendency to rip your soul out. I've lived here my whole life, so it's just another part of hellish Minnesota winters that we all love.

Minnesota's climate and general geography are so much like north-eastern Europe I don't think anyone is really surprised the bulk of the population is of Scandinavian descent. What does confuse me, though, is the death of some of the religious/cultural beliefs/myths.

Viking mythology describes hell as something in stark contrast to the one advocated by Christianity. Hell, in the traditional stories is described as a place of infinite dark and infinite cold. That is a hell that would scare me. Burning in a fiery lake of eternal torment? Yeah, that's pretty good, but the prospect of spending the rest of eternity cold and with no light seems a lot worse to me. Maybe it's me, but being tormented in a burning pool just doesn't compare to being tormented when you can't see and you’re too cold to do anything. At least a burning pit would let you see.

I guess I'm just perplexed as why the Christian missionaries wouldn't just adopt this version of hell. I mean, shit, with all those changes, you'd think someone would have figured to adopt an idea of hell that’s more terrifying. Come on, would the locals really have invented something that wasn't scary to them as their place of divine punishment?

Heaven and Hell aren't concepts I really get behind anyway, but if I'm going to hell I'd prefer the one with all the fire.

In closing: foosball is the greatest table-based game ever.


Sunday, February 06, 2005

Global Warming is Killing Mid-Western Forests

Two things before I begin:

1) and

One is a helpful lookup tool and the other is a scam site, but it looks like it could be the site you meant until you notice you've made a slight typo. Preying on the spelling-challenged, you mother-fucking bastards.

2) That last post sucked.

I'm sorry, the title came first, and I had nowhere to go from there, so I punted and missed.
///Post Start///
Deciduous trees, in case you didn't know, start production of auxin (growth inducer) when the tree experiences a certain amount of time at a certain temperature (e.g. forty degrees for two days). At which point the tree then begins to go into rapid growth.

I'm beginning to think I've got something similar.

Not that I grow or anything in the spring, but I do usually get fairly depressed. I've been in a bit of a funk lately and it's coincided neatly with a period of unseasonable warmth. It's just a little too creepy for me.

In reality it's probably just stress and not enough sleep and stress and a really terrible rejection and stress and too much work and not enough play and stress.

I've been enjoying the warmth, it's been a good time to go running, go biking, read outdoors, write outdoors, discuss life near big sunny windows, and other such pretentious college student things, but have I been unhappy.

It's a strange thing, but my beloved DJ shift is probably the cause of most of my problems.

Sorry to be a drag, but my hands are tired from typing all those business law abstracts and so is the rest of me.

The title is actually true. Deciduous trees winterize and won't come out of it until a period of days below a certain temperature. If they don't get them, they never come out and won't produce leaves and will effectively starve to death.

On that: g'night.


Saturday, February 05, 2005

Screaming Muppet Music Eats Your Soul

I'm a news junkie. It's a lot like heroin, but less rewarding and more annoying to those who don't partake in my type of desiese.

What can I say? I enjoy staying on top of what's going on. I read the paper, I read the BBC, and then I go read some more news. It never ends either, I'm reading the Financial Times right now. I feel a little guilty about it because I'm always reading the news, I'm always reading the same story at different outlets, and it makes no god damn sense.

Working at a place with an AP wire has made this much worse.


Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Pregnant Cheerleader Theme Song

One of the greatest songs ever.

I've been reading up on a varient to a classic set of psychology tests.

Everyone knows about ink blots (picture-to-word associations) and word-to-word associations. These are tests that rely heavily on repeated patterns being indicative of certain things, but always a have a large degree of variance due to the nature of the interpretation of the results, order in which the words/images were presented, way in which the test was prefaced, what the test enviroment was like, etc.

The one I've been reading about is basically a reverse of the ink blot test; subejects are given words (e.g. sea lion, field, street, kitchen, bed, merry-go-round) and are then asked to describe, in as much detail as possible, the image that immediately comes to their mind. From their you can extrapolate how the subjects generally looks at things. For example darker colors or drabness can indicate depression, sparse or very clean can indicate obsessive-compulsive nature, etc.

This test has the exact same issues as the others: high variability, radiacally different interpretations, information might be useless, but what makes these tests so enthralling to me is the infinite number of ways you can interpret things.

If I say I envision a small dark bronze statue on a wood work table in a home with wood floors, white walls, and a wood ceiling, with golden afternoon light streaming through the window, casting shadows, and just catching the shiny parts of the statue, when I hear, "sea lion," does that mean I have a prefer to be alone because I didn't imagine an actual sea lion. Perhaps it's indicative of a desire to have stability as a statue is predictable and unchanging. It could mean that I don't like being outside because I thought of a, "cozy," interior enviroment. What does the fact that I said, "home," and not, "building," or, "residence," indicate?

Like I said, I love this crap.

Here is a list of words that I saw used as examples the most, do what you will with them:
1) Boat
2) Blanket
3) Stool
4) Monkey
5) Rope
6) Flower
7) Fish
8) Balloon


Stop Drooling

Some of you might find this interesting.