5/31/2002 04:00:00 PM   [ link ]

It is interesting what happens when one goes to lunch with not one but two geeky CS boys. Respawning sandwiches, indeed.

5/31/2002 09:11:00 AM   [ link ]

I was a little disoriented this morning when I woke up. I was certain that my alarm clock was sending me some sort of message, and that by turning it off, I was going to miss the second half of the transmission. It seemed at the time as if I had already received and understood the first half of it, and I was angry at myself for cutting it off before the end.

It was only after lying in bed for ten minutes with only one eye open that I recalled an important fact: Alarm clocks do not transmit messages.

5/30/2002 08:44:00 PM   [ link ]

There's not a worse feeling in the world than knowing that someone you care about is angry with you; knowing that they are hurt but it's all just a big misunderstanding; knowing that you can't yet talk to them to sort things out. All you can do is sit alone with the nagging thought that maybe their anger is more justified than you thought; maybe you were being insensitive; maybe it would be smart to wake up and remember to pay attention to the people who love you once in a while.

5/30/2002 05:40:00 PM   [ link ]

I just got back from practicing piano, and for some reason it took a lot out of me today. I meant to stay longer, but after I played the Brahms I knew I was done. I poured everything into making it beautiful, and now I am so drained I feel like I could sleep for a week.

5/30/2002 12:34:00 PM   [ link ]

So I guess the hard thing about dancing for 6 hours is the whole part about going to work the next morning. I seem to be having some trouble motivating my legs to move.

5/30/2002 04:26:00 AM   [ link ]

Oh man, what a night. First off, swing dancing as usual, downtown until midnight. Afterwards, some of us went to Have a Nice Day Cafe. I was a little out of my element, since I wasn't really dressed for it. (A flowing skirt, while great for swing dancing, is not exactly club attire.) I'm usually not much into the club scene, but it's amazing how fun it can be when you go with people who can really dance. For the most part all of us were sober, and we actually listened to the music as opposed to just randomly grinding like you usually see. Dancing nice and close, you get into this groove where every movement that you make is coordinated with your partner, but you stop having to think about it at all.

It feels great to be so close to someone you can feel the way they laugh.

5/29/2002 03:53:00 PM   [ link ]

Well, I'm about to wrap up my first project for the summer. By that I mean, I wrote all of the code and I assume that there aren't any bugs in it. I formed the impression from my hardware design class last semester that there is only one rule for debugging VHDL: Everything always works on the first try, magically. No debugging is necessary in hardware design, ever.

I am likely to discover quite soon that this impression is sorely mistaken. But please, don't destroy my hopes quite yet.

I am finished with this project, I am sure of it.

5/28/2002 11:02:00 PM   [ link ]

Living with boys, Day (I don't know... let's call it) 11:
(you won't tell anyone I made that number up, will you?)

Is there a reason that the previous occupant of my room left a strip of Velcro™ attached to the wall? It seems a little weird, so I was just wondering...

5/28/2002 04:17:00 AM   [ link ]

I am depressed to discover that my most favorite and revered pair of shoes is flawed. My trusty boots... vital to completing some of my favorite outfits, they also cause me to be subjected to mockery in certain circles. More important than their stylistic value, however, is their status as my all-time number one puddle jumping footwear. For some reason that I can't explain, I am crazy about rain and the way it smells and the way it slowly soaks through clothes and hair until you feel twice as heavy as when you were dry. The only thing not to love is the repulsive squishy squishy sound of wet socks inside of shoes. That, of course, is where the boots come in.

Today, my downpour-related wanderings led me to a small river. (By this I mean an alleyway that was filled with over 6 inches of running water.) I was already soaked through, so I figured it would be the perfect place to jump, spin, dance... create artfully constructed splash pictures and pretend like I made them on purpose...

It was then that I discovered the saddening news: my boots are only mostly waterproof. And certainly not built for such rigorous activities as wading in an alleyway-river.

5/28/2002 12:25:00 AM   [ link ]

Today I left my apartment wearing pajamas and carrying a small purse and a package of cheese. There is a logical explanation for this. I was on my way to eat some birthday cake. However, I do not feel the need to justify my actions at this time. Thank you.

5/25/2002 08:53:00 PM   [ link ]

Today on the trip home I saw two rather misguided displays of patriotism.

First, there was an 18-wheeler with a large sticker on the back that said "Without trucks, America stops," and had a picture of a truck decorated with a flag. It looks patriotic. At first glance, it even seems patriotic. But then you start thinking about it: Wait a minute... so, all of our great country's livelihood rests on this one thing, the trucking industry? Whatever happened to America's strength, resiliency, and tough "don't mess with us" attitude? What if an evil mastermind infiltrated and destroyed the trucking industry? This bumper sticker claims that we as a country would be incapable of recovering from such a blow. Somehow, I don't really think that's true. And it's certainly not very patriotic.

Later, I saw a pickup truck with two bumper stickers. One was a rather ordinary "Proud to be American," or something like that. Except, next to it there was a sticker that said "BOYCOTT CHINA" in large red letters. Boycott China? What, all of it? Without getting into the political ramifications of such a suggestion, if someone told me to "boycott Chinese products", I would at least know what they wanted me to do. But how can I boycott China?? China is a country.

All right fine, you win. I won't buy China.

5/24/2002 01:16:00 AM   [ link ]

This evening I went to see yet another movie that everyone's seen by now except for me, and then went to Steak 'n' Shake. Here are a few choice quotes from the evening, in no particular order:


Elaine: I'm not you, Amy. I don't just randomly hit people really hard without reason.


Me: Ok... antisocial (*cough*) -- issues here. And Amy choking on pickle juice.


David: So, I don't really understand this whole Yoda-General thing. I mean, you've got Yoda the Wise Master, and that's normal. Then you've got Yoda as Gandalf, kicking a-- with a lightsabre. And you've got Yoda as Dumbledore, teaching all the kids. But, Yoda as... Sparticus??

(Also, did anyone notice that while Yoda was leading the army, he consistently used normal English sentence structure?)


Me: Oh man. I mean, I heard that the love scenes were pretty cheesy, but I honestly didn't expect them to be that awful! Wow.


Elaine's only reaction after the movie: *twitch*


David: So, that really left a lot of loose ends.

Elaine: Yeah, but so did Episode V, that was a total cliffhanger.

David: Right, but in Episode V you pretty much knew how the loose ends had to be tied up. Someone's got to rescue Han, he and Leia will hook up, Vader and Luke will have some sort of final showdown scene, the Emperor gets defeated and the Rebels win, The End.

Me: Yeah, what you don't know is that all of this will be accomplished with the help of small furry animals.

5/23/2002 05:05:00 PM   [ link ]

A few of you have expressed curiosity about my work. So, I have decided to scan in some pictures. I am certain that after viewing these pictures, each of you will be able to design your very own port card, just like mine.

My job for the next few hours is to turn the third picture into VHDL code. Fun.

5/21/2002 11:35:00 PM   [ link ]

"Ok, so... imagine Jesus. Except it's a really Russian-looking Jesus..."

Now why don't I have any stories that start out like that?

5/21/2002 03:52:00 PM   [ link ]

It has recently come to my attention that the advertising department for Spree® candy is not completely in tune with what the public wants. The outside of the package proclaims:
Spree®: It's a kick in the mouth!
Presumably this is meant to entice you to buy more candy. I mean, I know I always like to purchase candy that will physically attack me. In fact, it is one of my primary considerations when purchasing a candy. Not "What does this candy taste like?" or "What are the available flavors?" Not even "How much does this candy cost as compared to the amount of change in my pocket?" Oh no, when I am wandering down the candy isle, I assure you that the burning question in my mind is: "How much pain is this candy capable of inflicting upon me?"

5/21/2002 12:35:00 PM   [ link ]

I really need to discover a way to stay warm at work without drinking insane amounts of coffee. I wish I had more body heat. Or maybe a space heater. Although I'm not sure how well that would go over at the office (for those of you who are familiar with my use of the term "space heater"). I guess I'll just have to suffer through the caffeine overdoses in order to keep warm.

I'm starting to turn blue, it must be time for more.

5/21/2002 01:31:00 AM   [ link ]

After surviving numerous attacks on my personal dignity this afternoon, I think I deserve some sleep.

5/20/2002 02:08:00 AM   [ link ]

Last night I temporarily became a hick. I spent a substantial portion of said Saturday night sitting on the back of my car with Elaine, eating a funnel cake. At Walmart.

Today, I got to hang out with David (from the ninja story) since he's in town for a while. David is the sort of person who makes me feel like nothing interesting ever happens to me. He always comes into town with numerous stories of his insane antics and escapades (many of which put the ninja story to shame). Any stories I might have suddenly seem inadequate around David.

It's great to be (finally) done with moving so I actually have time to hang out with people, go to dinner, go to movies that everyone's seen by now except me... Now if only I could hang from the ceiling. (Although I suppose in the grand scheme of superpowers, there are better things out there.) Still... I think I need to go rock climbing soon.

5/19/2002 12:44:00 AM   [ link ]

Verdict: there are no green aliens in the fridge. (Breathe a sigh of relief, Mom.) In fact, there is very little food of any sort.

After moving carloads of stuff for the past two days straight, I'm too tired to be coherent right now. Must... sleep....

5/18/2002 12:16:00 AM   [ link ]

Living with boys, Day 4:

After I told my mother that I have yet to venture into the fridge at my new apartment, she warned me to be careful. "There are probably little green aliens in there!" she said.

Later, I took a break from packing to sit on the floor and talk with my roommate and some friends. They were sitting in a circle around the vaccuum cleaner, pretending it was a campfire. Now I really want marshmallows.

5/17/2002 04:39:00 PM   [ link ]

As I was packing today, Jenny walked into my room and attempted to shoot my window with one of those Nerf suction shooty things. Only it wouldn't stick to the window, it just bounced off. "Man, this Nerf gun SUCKS!" she said. "Well... I guess technically the problem is that it doesn't suck..."

5/17/2002 01:24:00 AM   [ link ]

I thought I was done feeling like this... but there will always be bad days, I suppose. There will always be mementos of the things that are gone, and reminders of the things you try unsuccessfully to forget. Some days, the only colors I can see are shades of grey and red. And some days, the empty space next to me looms much larger than life. Suddenly I can't breathe, and I can't think except to think that my lungs will surely collapse under the weight. My jaw drops down but no air will go in.

5/16/2002 06:00:00 PM   [ link ]

What I learned at work today:

I do not have a prostate, fake or otherwise.

Armed with that enlightening piece of information, I am now off to my "living room" to practice piano for a while. You learn something new every day...

5/16/2002 01:09:00 PM   [ link ]

It seems that Joe has found my weblog now. Yesterday he asked me, "Why do you do it? It only gives people another way to make fun of you." He then twisted his face and arms in a manner that I can only assume was intended to mock me, and said "Ewwwwwwww, cooooooooooties!"

So, why do I do it? Even Rob (who understands me better than almost anyone) says, "I was never one to keep a journal. I don't really understand what you get out of it."

It challenges me to write, and write often. This is sometimes difficult for me. I tend to belabor the little details of wording, occasionally to the point of losing what I originally intended to say.

I am completely willing to accept constructive criticism, or even mockery, from any who offer it. However, if you decide to go the route of mockery, perhaps you should have more to back it up than a collection of horribly geeky links.

5/16/2002 01:45:00 AM   [ link ]

mmmm... Nothing like a little blues dancing to put a smile on this girl's face.

My feet are sleepy now though... sweet dreams everyone...

5/15/2002 12:05:00 PM   [ link ]

Living with boys, Day 2:

I guess I should have saved some of those random screws I found yesterday. I was temporarily unable to leave my room this morning, due to the fact that the door handle was so loose that it would not open.

But, other than a few minor issues, I'm finally settling in over at the new place (by which I mean "I moved my computer over and the internet connection works").

Back at work, I have noticed that the Dave Ratio is in full effect. This theory states:
In any engineering or technical field, the number of women will be less than or equal to the number of guys named Dave.

It's kind of funny how often this turns out to be true.

5/14/2002 09:54:00 AM   [ link ]

Living with boys, Day 1:

I moved some of my stuff over to the new place last night. I had to vacuum before I felt comfortable walking in my new room, since there were an uncountably high number of random screws and springy things from pens on the floor. Also, I acquired $0.61, courtesy of the previous occupant. Maybe I'll go buy myself a slurpee.

Since I am outnumbered, does that mean now I have to leave the toilet seat up?

5/13/2002 08:44:00 PM   [ link ]

After several failed attempts to practice piano regularly after work, I finally made it today. The last three times I've tried to go, my efforts have been thwarted by the evil forces that wish for me to never be good at piano again. Twice, there were random graduation-related receptions going on in the room, and once the building was locked at an unusually early hour. Even though I have no claim on this room whatsoever, I have started thinking of it as my living room. Partly because I have spent a lot of time there, and partly because it looks like a huge living room in a fancy house. So, I'm usually somewhat miffed to find even a few people in there when I want to play, much less an entire party/reception that I'm not even invited to. In my living room.

But at least today, I had the room to myself. I found a Chopin waltz that's actually not an emotional rollercoaster of insanity, so I've been working on learning and memorizing it. It's coming somewhat slowly though, since I haven't actually learned a new piece since high school. Someday I will be good again...

5/13/2002 03:58:00 PM   [ link ]

Oh dear lord.

xfig just decided to change all of the nice blues and greys you usually find on solaris machines into hot pink, lime green, and red. OW.

ow ow ow ow ow!

I'm not sure my eyes will ever function properly again. Even Dave couldn't come up with a color scheme this hideous. (Not that anyone should take that as a challenge.)

5/12/2002 04:37:00 PM   [ link ]

Sigh... Why is it so hard for me to motivate myself? Maybe if I just sit here long enough, my stuff will magically pack itself. Or maybe someone will come and do it for me.

If anyone has any extra boxes I can have, please let me know.

5/12/2002 12:38:00 AM   [ link ]

Yeah, and all those pictures I have of us together? Those are going up on my dartboard. How do you like that?

5/11/2002 10:51:00 PM   [ link ]

I knew it. I knew I should have gotten the last of my laundry out of the dryer before I said that. Three entire loads, still wet? How could you? In all this time, you have been immature, unpredictable and selfish. But never, never have you been this heartless and cruel. What?! No, we can't still be friends! Not after this... I don't EVER want to see you again, you are out of my life!

And you know what I said earlier, about being sorry? Well I'm not! I'm only sorry that I wasted this much of my life on someone so pathetic as you.

5/11/2002 08:26:00 PM   [ link ]

Greenway Laundry Room, I have battled with you for the last time today. Through floods and fires, through your staunch refusal to dry my clothes, and even through your habit of forgetting to drain the water before declaring that my clothes are done washing, I have stood by you. I have visited you frequently, feeding you socks and quarters. All your childish behavior I have tolerated with the utmost patience. I have been inordinately faithful to you. But something needs to change. I know this isn't easy for you to hear, but... I feel that this relationship is suffocating me. And I can't go on like this. It is time for me to move on.

I am so sorry.

5/11/2002 06:35:00 PM   [ link ]

Depsite the fact that I felt horribly ill last night and didn't get any packing done at all, I feel much better today. I'm even wearing yellow, and I dug out my most comfy jeans (the ones with about 19 holes in them and big stripey patches on the butt). I wandered down to the Loop and went shopping. Came back with a cute skirt and a couple of shirts.

Better still, critics say my site is "well-written". Yay.

Even though I have yet to start packing, today is a good day.

5/10/2002 10:32:00 PM   [ link ]

And even though I tell myself it is not pathetic
that does not mean I am not lying to myself.
(you have more of a hold on me than I like to admit)

5/10/2002 03:03:00 AM   [ link ]

I am wandering through fog
and I can't find a landmark to tell me where I am
I can't find anything familiar at all

and maybe there's someone standing right next to me
someone who could wander along with me
and even if we're both lost, at least we're not alone.

except I don't see anyone standing there
and I walk right by

5/09/2002 02:32:00 PM   [ link ]

So, I'm at work, looking at some VHDL code. (VHDL is a hardware description language). Considering the cryptic signal names such as "sw_pad_zero" and "pc_up_l_link", I'm wondering if there's a reason that there's also a signal called "dallas"?

5/09/2002 12:17:00 PM   [ link ]

Today I noticed that my computer engineering professor/current boss, Dr. Richard, has a new sign on his door. It's one of those yellow and black warning stickers. It says "caustic". Oddly appropriate...

5/08/2002 08:13:00 PM   [ link ]

First day at work today. After being innundated with acronyms, I got to poke around at bits of solder under a microscope. It should prove to be an interesting learning experience.

In other news, my housing crisis is solved! I don't have to live in a box for the next month and a half! I do have to live with boys, though. Ewww. I hope I make it out of there without catching cooties... Keep your fingers crossed.

5/07/2002 06:06:00 PM   [ link ]

Today, I headed out for the 3 hour drive home in pouring rain. Everything was grey and green, and I was seized by a sudden desire for my car to be a convertible so I could put the top down. I guess at 70mph, rain would hurt a little, though...

The next thing I knew, all of the traffic was stopping. Everything came to a standstill, so I turned my engine off and listened to the rain, counted the cop cars that came by, and hoped the wreck ahead wasn't too bad. After about 30 minutes, they evidently decided that the road wasn't going to be cleared anytime soon, because a policeman walked back and started motioning people to turn around. I ended up driving the along the shoulder going the wrong way, while the people inside of several miles of stopped cars gave me confused looks. Once I got past the piled-up cars, I moved over onto the road and kept on driving in the wrong direction. The next thing I saw was a very old man on a very old bike driving along the shoulder. He was dwarfed by a poncho that blew back in the wind like a large plastic cape. He was so tiny that if he had lifted off of the ground, ET-style, I would not have been surprised. He was, of course, completely unaware that not too far ahead, cars coming the other way would block the shoulder he rode on. What in the world was such a frail old man doing, riding his bike along the highway in the pouring rain?

5/07/2002 12:28:00 AM   [ link ]

and maybe one day I will fall asleep in a patch of sunlight, curled up like a cat.

but tonight I would rather creep along the windowsill, staring at the rain as it hits the glass.

5/06/2002 02:56:00 PM   [ link ]

I think that Chopin was probably insane. I have in my music bag no less than three pieces that follow this general description:

Beginning: melancholy, and heartbreakingly beautiful

Middle: suddenly and inexplicably happy, to the point being nauseating (especially in comparison to the beginning)

Ending: once again passionately melancholy to the point of sounding silly after the preceding giddiness

WHY does Chopin have to be so insane? Why couldn't he just make up his mind about the emotion of the song and stick to it? The sheer ridiculousness of the contrast only serves to cheapen the otherwise beautiful moments. It makes all of it sound like a joke.

5/06/2002 03:45:00 AM   [ link ]

I am dried up and indifferent. In my mind I am standing in the middle of an empty grey field, and I can feel the wind tearing holes through me. I trudge in a circle, trying to put the wind at my back so it feels less bitter. But somehow, I am always facing it. My eyes water and my fingers go numb. The wind fills my mouth until I cannot speak.

5/05/2002 02:17:00 AM   [ link ]

Sometimes I am afraid that this coldness will never go away.

Sometimes I am not sure that I want it to.

5/04/2002 12:57:00 PM   [ link ]


(Translation: I bought a car!)

5/03/2002 06:47:00 PM   [ link ]

The other day while I was playing piano, michael decided that it would be a good idea to hit me every time I made a mistake. As "motivation", he said. (!) So naturally, I tried to think of something to play that would give me the greatest chance of avoiding pain. But there was nothing. I told myself that it's been a long time since I've played regularly. I shouldn't expect everything to be perfect yet. But then I started thinking... In high school, I played piano every day. Even then, there wasn't a piece that I knew for certain I could play without mistakes. I never focused my practicing efforts towards perfection. Instead, I aimed for beauty. Practicing in a way that would allow me to play a piece perfectly somehow takes the fun out of things. Everything begins to sound robotic, and stale. If a song was always perfect and always the same, I would start to hate it no matter how beautiful it was to begin with. I would rather make one or two mistakes and play with passion, than to play perfectly but coldly.

5/02/2002 06:10:00 PM   [ link ]

Tomorrow, my sister is staging a protest in front of a school board meeting, because they are considering cutting funding for middle school orchestra programs. She has a lot of people involved, and lots of signs. She's very passionate about this, which is really awesome. A few of her signs were a little over the top, though. ("Give me music or give me DEATH!", one said). I told her not to be too weird with it. "If you're too extreme about delivering your message, people will just stop listening," I cautioned her. "Like the people at PETA, they are crazy sometimes." She had forgotten what PETA stands for, so I explained. "Ethical treatment of animals. But these people are completely insane over their cause. Like they've been known to throw animal blood on people during protests, and do all sorts of things to get their point across." "BLOOD??" my sister says. "Like, real blood, they throw on just random people?! But, what if you were wearing capri pants or something?"

My sister has an uncanny ablility to make absolutely no sense.

5/02/2002 03:39:00 AM   [ link ]

Today, my roommate Jenny decided that we need an episode of Iron Chef right here. In our apartment building. Right now. This involved carrying a bag of completely random food items to the girls upstairs, and making them cook something with it. Here is a partial list of what they had to work with:

Using only the contents of this bag, they managed to concoct a cookie-like substance which they put in a pan and covered with melted chocolate. Then, they mixed the milk and jello to use as a glaze. (Much to their disappointment, the glaze did not turn orange.) After carefully taste-testing this culinary masterpiece, I give it the following marks:

presentation: 4/5 - Although the dish was displayed in a humble metal pan, the glaze was drizzled in a pleasing fashion.

originality: 5/5 - They actually used these crazy ingredients? Enough said.

taste: 8/10 - Somewhat dry and crumbly. Large amounts of chocolate compensated for this nicely, however.

total: 17/20

**On a side note, I am the biggest geek ever. After rereading this post and deciding that "dissapointment" looked like a funny spelling, I did not walk to my bookshelf for a dictionary. I did not open up Word and spell check it. No, instead I searched for it in Google.

Me: dissapointment
Google: Did you mean disappointment?

Google knows everything.

5/01/2002 04:37:00 PM   [ link ]

Several months ago, I wrote this story about ninjas. It is a true story. (To avoid any confusion, the "David" referenced in this story is not David of -273 fame.)


5/01/2002 12:46:00 AM   [ link ]

Until the other day, I had forgotten how much I love to play the piano. I went and played for the first time in months, and something inside me woke from a deep sleep. I could almost feel the piano looking at me disapprovingly, asking where I've been all this time. It broke my heart that I could no longer get through the songs I used to love so much, that I no longer knew how to make them beautiful. I will find it again, though... I haven't been able to stop going back.