Waffling in THREE dimensions.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

To Pitch A Tent

The following is another of the things I wrote in my fiction class. It was intended as a response to To Build a Fire by Jack London, hence the stupid title. He wanted clever he got lame. I'm finding ScribeFire, in addition to this new-ish keyboard, quite troublesome today. I cannot call this keyboard new because it lacks the USB interface I demand in all peripherals to be considered new.

There were three boy scouts: one large in stature, one large in knowledge, and one large in feelings. None were large in judgment. Though experienced in the ways of both first aid and hiking, when it came time to pick a suitable location to pitch their tent, none could agree on the best location. There were older boys in the troop, and many younger, but these were a group offered special privilege by fitting in neither group. They had formed their own patrol, set off to do their own thing, on what they saw as their own mountain. There was nothing new to them about the trip aside from the freedom the scoutmaster had granted them.

It was to be a delightful trip full of adventure and comradery, so long as they could avoid everyone else, and suppress the most passionate thoughts among them, those of a girl with long brown hair and fierce eyes who might have called this weekend to gossip for long hours if his father had coerced him into attendance. This was all supposing they could manage to avoid setting their pancakes ablaze the following morning, an impressive feat in itself for these boys.

The passionate one was brooding, throwing his pocket knife, blade-open, into the snow bank at his feet over and over, while the brains and brawn struggled to assemble their tent. They were wise enough to avoid setting directly under any large trees and prudent enough to choose a place buffered from the younger scouts by a hearty mound of snow. The mind and body shouted at the feeler to cook their dinner or to call the waah-mbulance and get it over with. Their goading provoked strings of swears followed by warm freeze-dried dinners a short time later. Placated by food and deterred by starlight, they went to sleep in their two-man tent.

In the morning, they awoke in uncomfortable proximity to the passionate one, having rolled into his depression during the night. He had hardly noticed, sleeping soundly in dreams of dreams, despite the bellows emitted with each exhalation of the brawn. The thoughtful one aroused first. His body jerked to manifest the repulsion he felt, but was blocked by the collapsed pole of the tent. It had snowed eleven inches in the night.

Goddammit! Mark, wake up. Steve, our tent collapsed. The others were slow to rouse. One was knocked by the jiggling of the other trying to turn over, eliciting murmurs from all three. A slow crescendo of curses was muffled by the powdery prison.

Slowly, they became informed of their situation. The one with muscles was indignant. But I have to pee! He grew increasingly belligerent in his attempts to escape, soon becoming incensed with a ferocious sort of claustrophobia. The more empathetic boy joined in the clamor enthusiastically, shaking the tent with his bulk. The last edged to the corner of the tent, cramped by the fury of his fellows and the cold ceiling, silently wishing that he had resolved the situation without rousing anyone.

Powered by ScribeFire.


I was reading this page:

Fascist America, in 10 easy steps | Special reports | Guardian Unlimited

And it just made me think:

Gadianton robbers

Powered by ScribeFire.

Friday, April 20, 2007

God of War

I beat the Challenge of the Gods today. Took quite a while. I also got a job offer, but really, it took forever. I just watched a bunch of the "treasures" I unlocked when I beat the game last night. The Making of God of War movie ends with the quote "God of War is fucking rad." Indeed.

Powered by ScribeFire.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007


I've been around. Loafing mostly. I kinda fixed my PS2, which was getting disc read errors on some of my favorite games. I used these to help:

Tweak3D.Net - Playstation 2 Repair

Dealing with PlayStation 2 disc read errors: Page 1

It hasn't been a perfect fix. I've found it works better upside down. I think I left the white gear a few clicks off. Or it is really easy to bash out of place. I've tried to be gentle, really!

Powered by ScribeFire.

Thursday, April 12, 2007


I got an A- in that class, by the way. A testament to all-nighters and superior awesomeness. I didn't even read the book for the final, although it was open-book. I seem to have incredible search-fu. I also did the equivalent of 5 quizzes for extra credit (~10 points each?). I only missed two, at most, although I performed very poorly on many throughout the semester. Once, after a particularly bad score he wrote, "Do you need some help?" I didn't; the class was prioritized low that night. My only regret is that I was never able to get the bound (spiral, he was very insistent upon this) copy of my responses, which was quite expensive overall. I would have liked to have it. The girl in the copyshop totally thought I was incompetent when I was trying to put it together. He let me hand it in a little late too. He was a weird old man.

In related news, I splurged. I may take apart my dilapidated PS2 to make my investment worthwhile. I found some good tutorials I'll take a look at. I'm worried about how dirty this place is. And I really hope my dentist appointment is next week instead of tomorrow. I use the word 'tomorrow' to refer to the next waking session which follows the sleeping time that will soon come.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

A True Story

I was fifteen at the time, involved in Cub Scouts for the second time. It was a “leadership position” on paper, a loophole in Boy Scout procedures in reality. Rank advancement required leadership, and the fact I was not God’s chosen mouthpiece in my church-sponsored troop did nothing to deter my ambition towards whatever petty treat my parents might surrender at the next Court of Honor. Thus I became a Den Chief, a go-between of boys and mothers.

I was the first person to volunteer for the obscure position. The boys are maniacs, the products of video games, action movies, and prescription stimulants. Control is established by having the most prominent boy’s mother “called” to be the Den-Mother. That ringleader was the key, he could control most all of them, except the most rambunctious and rebellious. But as a teenager with a propensity to wearing sunglasses, the same age as mutant turtles and other fads, I was pretty cool stuff; they hung on my words, basking in my reflected style, as I covered the tall tales section of the Cub Scout manual.

“…and that is the story of Rip Van Winkle. Well, that’s interesting. They’re missing one.”

“Which one?” “Tell us!” “Yeah!” They spurred. I could tell they wanted more, whether of my story telling or respite from silly crafts, I couldn’t be sure.

“The greatest tall tale of all time: the story of Old Man Pace and his picante sauce...” I let the words hang for a moment, enticing them.

They marveled. They begged me to continue.

“Well, there are many stories about Old Man Pace, but my favorite is the about his picante sauce. Legend has it that he loved his sauce more than life itself. You see, he had a vision, a mission really, to share this special recipe. He worked his whole life on it, and, once it was done, there was nothing in the world that could stop him from sharing it. That recipe is still imitated to this day but they say we’ll never get it half as right as it was back in the day. It was one of a kind. They had to invent that word to describe it, but they could never find a word to capture such a spicy experience. They chose the word picante; it means “biting,” because it was the old sauce that bites you back. It was the closest they’ve ever come.

“And if inventing the world’s most exciting food wasn’t enough of a claim to fame, he had marvelous adventures. He traveled the world doing grand things, him and his “poco pimiento,” that was his name for it. Now, this wouldn’t be a proper story without telling you about when he once fought a whole pack of rabid coyotes who wanted nothing more than to devour that delicious sauce with some hard boiled eggs. He won a spitting contest with a Gila monster, which were much more monstrous back in those days. He once crossed the Rio Grande with a rattler on each ankle. Why snakes would want to try that bold salsa, if you can call it that, with its diced tomatoes and fresh jalapeños, is a mystery, but it seems that not even snakes could resist Old Man Pace’s picante sauce. He traveled from El Paso to Chihuahua while suffering from a bad case of the bowlegs, without ever releasing his scowl. But nothing got him madder then people trying to make condiments that just didn’t know what they were doing. When he found some crazy fools were trying to imitate his salsa without using the freshest ingredients, woo boy! Especially when he found out where they were from…”

“Where were they from?” one of the cubbies asked.

I gulped, paused; I wanted my next words to reflect the severity of the crime committed against foods that day. “New York City.”

“New York City!” the children cried, at least one was noticeably unsettled by these words.

“That’s right, kids: New York City. When he found out what they were doing, he ate nothing but the spiciest jalapeño peppers until he was right near spitting fire, then he chased them all the way from El Capitan to El Capitan. Some say they saw him shooting flames, but I don’t know if I believe that. There was some talk of making the statue of Old Man Pace, built on the very spot he first shared his picante sauce with an tired group of vaqueros, (they call it “Big Tex” now) fire-breath capable, but it was ruled out for public safety reasons. Did you know that his magical blend of herbs and spices cured one of those vaqueros from dysentery and another of rope burn? Rumor has it; in 1979 it was served in a few of the more exclusive clubs, and cured over two-thousand individuals of disco fever. Kids, you should all avoid disco fever like the plague. It’s very contagious, and quite dangerous. I lost a cousin to a bad case of it; kind of a sore spot for me. But let’s move on. I wouldn’t want to put a damper on your guys’ mood.

“That sauce, they say it’s the closest thing to the food of gods that man has ever created. Old Man Pace, he lived for it. He did everything hoping to just to share the taste of his delicious picante sauce with the people of the Southwest and the world, and boy, did they love him. In fact, jalapeños are the state fruit of Texas to this very day and chips and salsa is the state food. Yep, Old Man Pace did his best to share his great local taste with everyone he could. He cried himself to sleep at night thinking of people eating salsas canned in New York City. He was a pretty amazing man. There are other stories about him, of course, but that’s all I can remember off the top of my head. You can always consult your local library for more information if you’re curious.”

Of course, none of this was really true, but they ate it up. I imagine someday in the supermarket they’ll figure it out.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

More words to remember

I wrote these bits when I was misguidedly attempting to write a short story response to Greasy Lake, and in first person! The narrator here was going to be Sam, but I scrapped the idea before I developed it very far, but I am still hesitant to delete such vivid descriptions of Big Dan. The removal of these parts will constitute the completion of my 7th required entry.

The three of us shared a common bond of music: the
baritone saxophone. The other was a penchant for destruction and the lesser
forms of mischief. It was after a jazz concert.

people clean up nice. Josh was not one of those people.

We called him Big Dan for a
reason. He wore a white tuxedo jacket with black pants. His curly blond hair
was unusually styled. I suspected it had something with a particular girl, but
theirs was a torrid romance to which the best option remained quarantine. It
would be his basso profundo that would set our night’s adventures in motion.

It is a voice that is hard to
resist. Girls have asked him with intentions undeclared for suggested
recordings of that voice. The voice is the antithesis of Big Dan, an otherwise
thoroughly repugnant person. When he said he was a jazz musician (just got done
with a gig in fact) in his deepest growls, you’d believe this 5’10” white boy
from the suburbs actually was. And that’s exactly what Earl did. So convinced
was Earl that he extended an invitation right there, right in the middle of the
Chevron station, to some party he had heard would be “off the hook.” As a bunch
of painfully white, embarrassingly prude, and thoroughly intrigued high school
boys, we could hardly decline when he ran over to the window as we began to
pull away, just to make sure we’d come.

It was at this time that the
distant chirp of sirens set off the danger epiphany and we unanimously declared
it in good character to resolve our call upon Earl’s party. Perhaps if we met
him later, we’d stare long enough to try to remember who he was, why he seemed
familiar, and break the glance with the slightest indication that he had become
aware of it. Big Dan was getting tired, as was I…


Powered by ScribeFire.

You might think it would be cool to have stuff named after you...

...but what if it wasn't for something cool? Reuben Sturman named a line of adult accessories after President Johnson. Not so cool now, is it? Or is it?

In any case I only have 5 left! That seemed like a bigger accomplishment before I wrote it. That's including a few extra-credit papers, which I have completed two of currently. So that's only like 4 more required, 2 of which have to be critical reviews. Blech. I can make those short I think though, and still have the mean come to 1.5 pages, which was the desired mean. I proceed to write with reckless abandon! I have less than 4 hours remaining!

Didn't fit

This sentence didn't want to fit, but I'm somewhat fond of it: I hate having hair in my face only slightly more
than the maintenance required by the fancier styles and am dutifully looking
forward to the age in which a haphazard hair style, or perhaps a long grey ponytail,
can be accepted as a hallmark of age or perhaps a symptom of senility.

Powered by ScribeFire.

6+ more!

It feels like I should have more done than I do, or that I have done more than I've recorded, or some other dissonance from this project. I was writing a brief essay on why I am glad I'm not a girl, and I was moving this passage into the rest of what I have so far and realized it had very little to do with the actually essay. Here you go interwebs!

I am very thankful to be of the
male persuasion, more thankful each time the ugly opportunity to watch children
is presented, at which turn, point at the nearest available female. What about her? I ask. If the suggestion
is not enough, even when coupled with adamant warnings that I’ll drop it! Don’t let me drop it!,
holding a baby at arms length, like a live explosive, and asking at each gurgle
and coo what does that mean?, usually
removes any suggestion of infant competency long enough to return the infant and
make a clean escape, not forgetting to thank them for the opportunity to enjoy
a pleasant interaction with their infant (delivered with a flustered look about
me). I won’t suggest that babies are not cute, but that doesn’t mean you have
to hold them.

Powered by ScribeFire.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007


I feel silly posting links to things that BoingBoing posts about. But I really enjoyed this, even if some of the jokes are a little forced (see the del.icio.us joke), but accents have a hypnotic effect on me..

glumbert.com - Supermarket 2.0

Powered by ScribeFire.

Three down!

Only 7+ to go with ~9 hours 'til deadline. Plus studying for the exam I will fail for not reading the book. I meant to read it, but Statistics took priority and edged it out of time until the opportunity was eliminated. Which will I do next... Girl or A&P. I did the three "biggest" ones I suppose. I'm not sure how I like them, whatever, get back to work Wafflecone! And all this on the day that they released Issue 9 to the Test Server! So tempting, luckily it isn't downloading (fast) on my computer, so I can't indulge, but the temptation to read the forums about it is powerful. I ran into an interesting article in my writing the response to Araby, which took a lot longer than I had intended. There was a lot of content in there, and I'm not sure it was about the right story, but hopefully I told it well enough. He wants to feel either entertained or informed. I'm fairly confident that my response to Rip Van Winkle is at least a little humorous, assuming he's had the product I refer to throughout the piece. It was very funny when it actually happened. Turn off italics! Meh...

Limerence - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Powered by ScribeFire.

Rip Van Winkle

I do believe I may have finished one, pending a bit of further review. That only leaves like, what? eleven more.. Check out the cover I made for the finished product. I've given up on any hope of having read the novel we'll be tested on Tomorrow, Bel Canto, which is unfortunate, but what can you do? I think this is worth more points and has the possibility of extra-credit. I still don't anticipate much sleep, I've been having a hard time staying on task. I know they aren't pennies, but have you ever tried making a realistic copper effect on Photoshop? I haven't, but I didn't want to spend more time trying, even if it would be a simple color overlay. A brief description of what this project entails:
*Spiral bound
*Double Spaced
*12pt font
*Clever title
*At least 10 entries
*2 entries must be critical response to a critical analysis
*Creative Cover Art
*Table of Contents
*Page numbers (continuous throughout)

I did not start soon enough..

Monday, April 02, 2007


I am very frustrated right now, but this made me feel a little better.

Statistical hypothesis testing - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Powered by ScribeFire.


This is my favorite day of the year. Unfortunate that it is mired in finals for me..
Err, it was. It's the second now. Not sure why this wasn't posted last night. I think it may have had something to do with the article's title, which originally included an asterisk I had to remove.

Wired 15.04: What We Can Learn From The Office

Check out the comments thread on the Underwire blog about the issue. Tons o' hate for the cover. Jenna Fischer is very attractive, but if Wired was going to sell out for sex, I imagine they would have picked someone who connotes sex so much harder. Although, I had to do a double-take to make sure it was Pamalamadingdong. The whole thing also generated some scorn from the Table of Malcontents, who are never happy unless something involves their insane god Cthulhu.