Sunday, March 28, 2010


pumpernickel?! i hardly know her nickel!

pretty sweet march madness game this weekend. had one of our girls tie it with 5 seconds left with a six-point shot (girls score double!) and then lost in overtime by 1 when of their girls hit a six pointer with 15 seconds left. madness baby, madness.
i'm pretty tired right now, but i think i'm done with my sophomore essay, which is great. the rest of the year should be a breeze. lots of shakespeare, croquet, tanning, crying, smelling, and the rest.
i read on that there's going to be eye-watching functions in the new Apple tablets that will give you definitions if you pause while reading, or eliminate non-essential information if you're skimming. crazy! the robots are taking over.
i might go see avatar on imax 3d on tuesday...good idea?


p.s. i tried to model this post after annie's blog as much as possible. success?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

sophomore essay

i have not yet actually started writing my sophomore essay. and i don't see why i should. i have a whole week to do it when i get back. plus i've been doing some very intense thinking about it, which is basically just as good as writing. right? instead of working, i've been doing lots of reading, and going on walks with the d-o-g. i'm currently working my way through the omnivore's dilemma, it's fairly thought provoking. it's this guy's attempt to point out all of the problems with the food industry as it currently stands, instead advocating small-scale, local farming and buying. it's been compelling, and well written, but i am inherently suspicious of a work with such a clear agenda, so now i kind of want to read a book by the USDA or something advocating the current system. anyway, i'm only half-way through, so he hasn't talked about going back to hunting and gathering yet, maybe that will be the perfect system. all in all, i still hate vegans, and i love high fructose corn syrup, and no commie writer is going to change that.
i recently watched faubourg 36, or paris 36, this french musical. it was good, it was a little surreal, but no more than you would expect, and fairly entertaining. i also recommend the film previously made by the same director and featuring the same main character, called the chorus. it's about a group of troubled, orphaned boys turned into a chorus by their supervisor, it was also french and good. everyone could use to be a little more pretentious, anyway.

in follow up youtube meandering to the mbira array videos, i also found this crazy stuff with a dude amplifying his plucking of cactus spines (not a euphemism). it's very strange, but also somehow relaxing. there are a surprisingly large number of videos of people playing the cactus.
in birthday news, i am now king of the mirrors, and that is a good thing. i wasn't sure how much i would actually like having a bunch of mirrors, but i now rest assured that it was a brilliant idea. everyone is fascinated by mirrors (although some are clearly less willing to admit it than others). as soon as i opened the second mirror, i did make an infinity of myself, and it was awesome. people at school will not be able to handle it when i get back, even if my funhouse mirror that i ordered will not be delivered until november. that just means they'll be really surprised. i also got some cool eddie izzard stuff, mocked for looking like an old man, some scratch-offs(no winners, unfortunately), an awesome looking frog clock, and eventually i will be getting a new video card so that i can finally play all of the new computer games on my computer. all in all, a rousing success. the only thing lacking was some treasure for the chest, but since that isn't completed yet, i suppose there's no hurry for that. if you're still looking for a present to get me, it's not too late, here's an idea:
i'll close by reminding everyone to cheer for the terps in the ACC tournament that started today, but more importantly during march madness. i know greivis vasquez is a douche, but they have a good team this year. it doesn't matter than he slams the ball into people's heads, it just doesn't.

Saturday, March 6, 2010


spring break has been pretty nice so far, and it's only been one day. i'm going to take that as a good sign. so far i have: slept past 8:00, had pho nam, cashed checks, done leisure reading, gone for a walk on an actual (50 degree and sunny) spring day, caught up on missed TV shows, and seen ladysmith black mambazo LIVE. this is the life, more or less. the concert was so crazy. everyone in the group loved doing high kicks, like foot to shoulder high, even the 60 year old dudes, it was pretty much their go to move. the picture above is of me practicing. they were also unexpectedly hilarious. not just because they were weird or anything, they actually had a whole routine that they did that was awesome. they just brought a lot of energy to the performance, and i now kind of want to see them in a more informal setting where the audience would be more willing to respond to it. but nonetheless, it was a really sweet experience, and their singing, needless to say, was great. even though they did only do about 8 songs in two hours, because they would get too distracted doing sweet dance moves to ever end the song.
in the book i'm reading about a neuroscientists study of baboons, he mentions a Sudanese boy playing what he called a plinker for him (that sounds more inappropriate now that i reread it, but i'm going to leave it). i realized what he was describing was a thumb piano like we have at home, and was compelled to do some further looking into it online. there are different versions of it, the kalimba, and mbala among them. the way he described the sound made me want to hear someone good at it play it, and it is definitely pretty cool.
check it out:
very soothing. and the ones being played by actual villagers are even cooler. it also reminded me of the singing bowl my roommate got for his birthday, which does the same thing as when you rub your finger around the edge of crystal glass. but the bowl is extra cool because it's usually made of different metals so they have different resonance frequencies and so a whole series of overtones is created, and it gets really impressively loud. i often sit in his room while he's in class and play with it for long periods of time. nobody tell him that i play with his singing bowl.
the other thing i was thinking about today was how many TV shows i watch now. it kind of bothered me, because it's seems like it's too many, but then i realized that they're all genuinely good shows. i think that there is just a lot of good comedy out there, and people are especially capitalizing on the situational comedy that TV can offer. mom also made a good point that awkward is becoming more and more funny, and really there's no end to possible awkward scenarios, so there's practically endless new material to work with. it also might have something to do with production costs being lowered, so they can afford to get lots of young, new comedians. pretty much everyone on the casts is funny. i'm thinking particularly of parks and recreation and community, but the office and it's always sunny also are up there. i suppose i should enjoy it while it lasts, but i also don't see it being something that would fade out over time. it's not as though people are going to find something more entertaining than laughing or jokes...those things are kind of the definition of entertaining. so that's pretty neat.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

so close

it's so close to spring break, i can hardly handle it. i want it so bad it's like acid in my mouth (1 schrute buck to anyone who gets that reference(another to anyone who knows the going rate from schrute bucks to dollars)). unfortunately, i still have a 5 page music paper to turn in before break, aka tomorrow, aka shoot me now i haven't started it yet. but then i thought to myself, when start writing it when i could blog instead? after all, it's blogging i'm serious about, not school.
as promised, here is me at lola's (the girl on the right was some sort of side-show attraction, i was too lazy to photoshop her out):

also, here's a pretty cool video, i kind of want to set up something like that in my room.

the article explaining it is here:

speaking of sweet things in my room, i ordered a giant fun house mirror two weeks ago and it still hasn't arrived yet, i am getting very impatient. it is putting a serious damper on my plan to have as many mirrors in my room as possible. it's also making it harder to build my death ray that focuses sun beams at people on the quad so i can burn people i don't like.
finally, i have lower back pains. it's awful. even my sweet computer chair yoga ball isn't helping. i've been doing lots of pull-ups, so i don't think it's back strength either. after all, this is what i'm working with right now. however, i recently found out that new studies have shown that it is back endurance, not strength that is a better indicator of probability of back pain, so i might have to do some endurance exercises. they sound pretty fun anyway though, you get to hang your upper body off the edge of a table and then try to hold it parallel to the ground for as long as possible.

Monday, March 1, 2010

time to get serious about blogging

First of all, I'm glad to have rediscovered achewood.
Anyway, sometimes you have to decide to really commit to something. Because otherwise, what's the point of living? You just float around without any purpose in life. With that in mind, it's clearly time to get serious about blogging. It's back by popular demand. (Shout-out to Kristine)
Sadly, I can probably encapsulate the past two and half months of not blogging very briefly. I went home for break and killed it, won Christmas, and then went back to school. School has been fun, although I'm not sorry that's it's the first day of March. I actually don't mind the winter that much, (especially when there are so many awesome sledding opportunities, thanks to feet of snow being dumped on us) but it has sent a lot of people at school into the doldrums which is boring of them. It was stunning how few people went out to romp in the snow. They missed out on the sweet sledding ramp built of six chairs and two recycle bins that is fairly unmelted. This is what Annie looked like when she went down: My intramural basketball team went winless, although we played probably one of the best games of the season against the undefeated Hustlers in our final attempt. Our B-team put us down 17-0, we staged a furious rally to close the gap to 8 by half. Inspired, our B-team refused to score until 2 minutes were left in the 3rd, on a set of 6 free throws from a double-technical following a shooting foul. The fourth-quarter was back and forth, several players had four fouls. Yours truly buried some dagger three pointers, and discovered the meaning behind a Browning quote that I memorized after seeing it in the Shackelton biography: "Just when things looked their worst, they turned for the thin is the line which divides success and failure." Unfortunately, I was on the reverse side of this dividing line. Down 5, I nailed a three with 10 seconds left and was the hero. Even the referees were happy about it. Down 2, I stole the inbounds pass, and threw up the ugliest looking fall-away scoop/hook shot in history, ignorant of the fact that my teammate was open underneath the basket. Still, the game was a lot of fun. On a side-note, the jump program has finished and was a resounding success, despite the fact that I did not achieve the ultimate goal of dunking. I had 2 blocks and probably 8-10 rebounds in our game, and my legs are like tree trunks.
On the treasure-chest front, for those who remember that epic, things are going very well. The top AND bottom are now complete, I just need to add some trim, and screw in a hinge. Don't worry, I have already put in a birthday request for some gold coins or bars to make it a properly treasure chest. We'll see if the 'rents come through. I did some searching, and was surprised to find that there's actually a huge gold market on Ebay. It was really hard to avoid bidding on anything.
As for the search for immortality, everything is coming up aces. Things are progressing well in terms of doing some work at Tulane over the summer. My independent research is also going well, as I recently read a ton of articles about resveratrol, which has produced some amazing results in lab studies. From what I was able to parse out of all the articles, the important part is that it activates SIRT1, a type of protein, that helps reduce free radicals. What's hilarious is despite the fact that it as yet has not been tested on humans at all, lots of people are apparently as desperate as I am for life extension, because there are whole groups of people that are now taking resveratrol supplements. I think they're mainly doing it because they don't have the willpower to live on a calorie-restricted diet. Also, everyone is making a big deal about how it's naturally in wine (although in absolutely negligible quantities, you'd have to drink hundreds of bottles a day to get a significant dose). I think they just want an excuse to drink wine out of a soda can. It is almost spring break (OW-OWW) which must mean it's time to go to Austin! Apparently that place is pretty sweet, and I think the timing works out so that my visit to Charlie coincides with South by Southwest, although I don't know that I'll be able to overcome his inertia enough to go to that. Also, is it sad that this is the first image that turned up in a google search for spring break...with moderate safe search on? Is there any way these girls were young enough to actually be on spring break at the time? Anyway, as it turns out, the return to blogging was fairly painless. My next post should have some excellent pictures of me and my buds all duded up for Lola's. Plus, check out this sweet video: