Sunday, February 26, 2006

more wisdom

When I was in high school, I had the opportunity to read the morning announcements over the school wide intercom. One day in particular, it was my friend Jeremy's birthday, and I wanted to wish him a happy birthday. Annoucning an individual's birthday over the intercom was something generally frowned upon by the micro-managing administrator, Mrs. Landers, and I wasn't sure how to approach the subject. I asked my English teacher and friend, Mrs. Manson for advice on the situation. She told me "It is better to beg forgiveness then to ask permission." Armed with that new philosophy, after reading the change in the girls volleyball team practice schedule change, I quickly added, "Oh, and happy 17th birthday, Jeremy Anderson," before reading the next announcement about the location and start time of the next away football game. I looked up and across the room Mrs. Landers was glaring at me. After the announcements were over, she pulled me into her office and began with the "If you ever pull a stunt like that again" speech, and I feigned ignorance (but really, Mrs. Landers, I didn't know it wasn't allowed). I promised not to do that again, and caught up with Jeremy after 2nd period, who thanked me for thoroughly embarassing him.

On a side note, at some point during my 5 year high school career, Mrs. Landers broke her leg. Her first name was Peg, so we referred to her from that point on (and forever after) as Peg Leg.

On another side note, the profie picture to the left was my 11th grade class photo.

Viva La Aquanet!

Saturday, February 25, 2006

a ship is safe in the harbor

After my morning classes, I headed to Grand Central bakery for a late leisurly breakfast. I sat at a window and enjoyed the simplistic satisfaction of an egg, toast and coffee while writing in my journal. Sorry, no bacon today. While I was eating and reflecting, I started thinking of a coffee shop called Ruby's, that I used to frequent 5 years ago. There was a guy who worked there sometimes, named Ryan, who was also well versed in the art of Reiki and, in addition to making awesome Soy Mochas, would generally impart some wisdom in the 15 minutes I spent there on my work break. One afternoon I was telling Ryan about an awesome hand made ceramic coffee cup I got from the Oregon Country Fair, in exchange for helping one of the vendors throughout the weekend. Ryan asked me where it is, and I explained that I didn't want to use it because it was so nice, I was afraid I would break it and kept it at home. Ryan replied "A ship is safe in the harbor, but that isn't its intent" and I got the jist of what he was trying to express, not to be afraid to use or do something because of pre-conceived notions of klutziness or lack of confidence. As a result, from that day forward I brought the mug to work and used it, so much that the inside is stained from coffee. It has a really neat design (pictured to the right), it keeps your coffee or other hot beverage piping hot, while allowing the top portion of the beverage to cool down a bit and actually be drinkable. It came with a cork top, but I lost it long ago (didn't really use it anyway). It's pretty stable, I can bring it in the car and rest it on the floor of the passenger side, and unless I'm driving like a NASCAR wanna-be, it won't tip over.

Friday, February 24, 2006

job fair

I attended a job fair earlier this week. It was held in a college gym, and the doors just opened to job seekers. Many of the vendors were still setting up their booths at start time. Go Cougars!

Is my disguise working? do I look thrilled?

Holy unemployment, Batman!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006


Well it's been a busy month, so I haven't been blogging much. I have been thinking and observing many different things, such as disaster phenominia that are occurring, and how they occur in cycles. It seems to me that there have been many mining accidents lately, too many in my opinion. But part of me wonders if there is a lull in media events, so when a situation occurs the media outlets focus on it to death, often employing techniques as the "BREAKING NEWS" banner, or the constant coverage and updates making the episode of Judge Judy you're probably watching shrink to the mini square, while a scrolling news bar spews out the details of a small suburbia entrenched in a disaster.

On a side note, I spent the first 20 minutes of my work day cleaning up about a cup of sugar off of my desk, keyboard, mouse, floor, files, phone, paperclip tray and 3-ring binders filled with a nearly useless collection of letters and numbers depicting an elaborate but probably unnecessary procedure, guideline,or contact information. Although I eliminated the majority of the mess, whenever I roll around in my chair I hear and feel the gritty resistance of unrefined dehydrated cane juice (sugar for you mainstream american consumers).

It seems to me a couple of years ago there was an increased amount of reporting on shark attacks, maybe the sharks got together and came up with a plan of retribution, or it was a global epidemic. I'm not sure, but for whatever reason, you don't hear much about it. I feel since the Sago mine disaster there has been quite a few mine disasters, one in particular in Canada everyone seemed to get out okay, but there was another one recently in Mexico and I'm not sure what the outcome of that disaster was.

There's also been quite a few mudslides and landslides, completely wiping out whole villages and cities, just erasing them from the landscape, as if mother earth were angry and reclaiming what has been altered and taken advantage of by the prevailing species. Now, in the NW I expect a certain degree of this, as clear cutting forests in a hilly and mountainous environment becomes more the norm. People should expect that if they build their home to teeter off of the hillside, there's a good chance that it may crash down to the floor of the valley. Especially when the land your house supports are fixed to is rain soaked. I don't know enough about the topography or politics of forest harvesting of the Philippines or any other Asian or Indian countries, but it seems like a lot of environmental re-arranging has been going on there.

We're all going to hell in a handbasket. (handbasket??)

went for a walk last night

I took these pictures near a bus stop on SE 42nd and Belmont.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

only in Florida...

Fla. Man Kills Roommate Over Toilet Paper

MOSS BLUFF, Fla. - A man accused of fatally beating his roommate with a sledgehammer and a claw hammer because there was no toilet paper in their home has been arrested.

Franklin Paul Crow, 56, was charged Monday with homicide in the death of Kenneth Matthews, 58, according to the Marion County Sheriff's Office.Capt. Thomas Bibb said Crow initially denied his involvement, but confessed during questioning.

Crow told investigators that the men were fighting about the toilet paper over the weekend when Matthews pulled out a rifle. Crow said he then began beating Matthews with the sledgehammer and claw hammer, according to an affidavit.

Matthews was beaten so badly he had to be identified through his fingerprints, detectives said.

Crow was being held at the Marion County jail without bond. It was not immediately known whether he had an attorney.

Original story can be viewed at:

Thursday, February 09, 2006

I just had to post this...

Man Apparently Kills Himself on PlaneFeb 09 2:44 PM US/Eastern


A man apparently hanged himself in an airplane lavatory during a flight that was diverted to Denver after his body was discovered, police said.
Denver medical examiner's spokeswoman Michelle Weiss-Samaras said an autopsy was planned for the body of Gerald Georgettis, 56, of Miami, which was found Wednesday on a United Airlines flight from Washington, D.C., to Los Angeles.
"Right now, everything leads us to believe the male involved did commit suicide," police Detective Virginia Lopez said. No other passengers were ever in danger, she added.
A man with the same name and age was charged with arson and felony criminal mischief in Miami after a fire caused nearly $1 million in damage at a Ford dealership on Saturday. Weiss-Samaras and Miami-Dade County police could not confirm it was the same man.
The arson suspect was accused of driving his new Ford through the dealership showroom, pouring gasoline on it and lighting it. Police have said he was upset about the price.


Sunday, February 05, 2006

kids' Kung Fu class

I’ve been training to test for my next belt level in Kung Fu class, and part of my testing requirements is to get a pre-determined amount of time teaching others. I can do this by assisting with the beginning adult classes, or the kids’ classes. Yesterday morning, I assisted in the 9 AM kids class. There were a lot of kids there, about 22, and they were between the ages of 5 and 12. We did a lot of different things, and kept the energy high as we switched activities every 5 minutes or so, but part of what made my experience so much fun were the games incorporated into the kids’ lessons. Yesterday, the kids played a game called Crab Soccer, which is basically soccer played from a crab walk position. You are only allowed to use your feet and legs to maneuver and kick the ball. The ball, by the way, was a 25-pound medicine ball, so as an adult, I have to exert effort to move it. I refereed and made sure things moved along, while these little tykes subconsciously driven by a competitive edge, exhausted themselves. Another game we played that I particularly enjoyed was called “Stick With No Conscious.” The basic concept of this game was a group of kids stood around me in a circle, while I wielded a long staff. I spun around at different speeds, causing the kids surrounding me to either jump over the staff, or have to duck under it. If the staff touched one of the kids, they had to do 2 push-ups. I totally, but accidentally nailed one kid in the foot. I started to apologize, but it was lost as he dropped to do his push-ups before the stick with no conscious came back his way. I thought working with kids was going to be a challenge, I envisioned them not following my directions and taking advantage of me, but I did my best to have a large presence and clear, loud voice. Some of those kids were such little guys, but you can see the potential, if they stick with it they could go into their adult life with a strong confidence and a little better understanding of how things work. They can develop an understanding of the expectation of quality; in everything they do and apply it to all areas in their life.

slow ped xing

Who designs these signs? How can I get in on a job like this?
And why is the stick man carrying a purse?

Saturday, February 04, 2006

more about numbers

What's with all these unusual sequences of numbers we are required to incorporate into our lives? I think it’s strange; we are expected to track all of these weird groupings of numbers that reference some aspect of our lives, or defines who we are in a weird binary way. Your health record number is 356-29-798 and your employee ID number is 82174 and your electric service account number is 006-57958135 your customer care number for the items your returned is 8007-4159-7 and the list goes on and on. How about the essential number combinations, like phone numbers, bank account numbers, pin numbers, all those we take for granted and use several times daily, without even thinking about it! And to add to the madness, some people choose to bring more numbers into their life, for example, people that play the lottery—and I’m not talking about the scratch-off tickets, although one has to wonder what the long term effects of touching and possibly ingesting the silvery scratch-off stuff is compared to getting a winning ticket every once in a while. The 50 bucks you could win from one of those cards isn’t worth the medical care you’ll need after that silvery scratchy stuff gives you cancer. Has anyone ever tested that stuff to see where it’s toxicity is at?

My dad’s really into scratch-off cards. But I digress; that wasn’t where I was going with the number thing. I’ll get back to my dad later. The number insanity I was referring to were the elaborate drawing lotteries, where everyone waits on lines in convenience stores all over the nation to participate in their state’s 194 million or 342 million or 62 million lottery drawing, and has to pick like 6 or 7 or 10 different numbers between 1 and who knows what in the double digits. An equal opportunist lazy person can select the “quick pick” option on the manual form, and let the computer decide for them. Either way, the purchaser gives the little slip filled out with the little pencil to the cashier, who punches the request into the giant special hulking lotto machine. After some printing noises and a cash transaction involving an amount of money I’m still not clear on, the clerk hands back a ticket or something that officially states your numerical selection. At some pre-determined time that also isn’t clear to me, a smiling woman in a nice dress is televised, as she adjusts the numbered ping-pong balls that the machine spits showing the winning combination. They show groups of numbers that look like this: 42 12 6 62 33 36 10 7. Some people are really into it, but I think it gets too thick to think sometimes, all the numbers swirling around my head.

The only thing more ridiculous then the array of number combinations that take unconscious precedence in our lives are the situations where they mix numbers with letters. When the letters case-sensitivity matters, that is completely obscene. Fortunately, the only places I’ve even encountered numbers mixed with case-sensitive letters are passwords or session id numbers. I have a password for a website that is something like v6u93LU2, looking at a number arrangement like that evokes a weird scared feeling. Almost as if the mix of numbers and case-sensitive letters are powerful, authoritative entities, hypnotizing me with subtle fear or nervous negative anxiety. Upper case letters mixed with numbers are just cumbersome, tedious beings. I knew of an AT&T customer number that was 7955313-LE, or every time I wanted to request some office supplies at one job I worked at I needed to write in our department code, which was 1129-SA6-PTLD. I mostly felt sorry for those number and upper-case letter groups. I can’t say I’ve encountered any all lower-case letter and number groups; I’ll have to think about that one. I’m sure they’ve crept and leaked into some aspect of my life at some point.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

a walk down memory lane

Our friend came by the other night and let us borrow an Atari he received for Christmas and exhausted himself playing. It really brings back memories, mostly the memories associated with the frustration of not knowing the object of some of the games. The console is much smaller then I remember, and instead of individual cartridges, the console has several games built in, and upon turning it on there is an options screen that lets you pick and play from several different categories. I'm guessing there must be about 50 games on that, but not all 50 are games you remember or want to play.

There are a couple of great classic games, like Combat and Asteroids, but after about 20 minutes of play my attention span waned and I switched games again. I played Pitfall for a while, but was soon revisited by the same anxiety I experienced when I was a youngster—killed by scorpions that switch direction at the exact moment I’m trying to jump over them, getting eaten by alligators, not navigating the obstacles well and falling into pits or bodies of water. I played Yars’ Revenge, but after defeating the spinning thing on the right hand side of the screen a few times, playing became redundant and not stimulating. I played Atari Pong for a while, but again, after 20 minutes of volleying the square blip back and fourth I became uninterested. I played Haunted House, a game I remember sitting on the floor -with my cousin and investing many hours into, only to become discouraged after wandering around the electronic maze and not having a clear objective. Missle Command was kind of fun, and a couple of games that were new ones for me proved to be entertaining for a while. Some were just as dumb as I remembered, such as Hangman. All said and done, I spent about 45 minutes playing all the different games. What started as a walk down memory lane, soon turned into the stark realization that even though I enjoy playing, I still suck at most Atari games.