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Thursday, November 29th, 2012

Subject:So much spam.
Time:5:11 pm.
Mood:wistful .
The only reason I log into LJ anymore is to delete comment spam. Kinda sad, actually. I'm just not in a blogging mood these days. Also, I still hate the word blogging, and would prefer to call it just about anything else. How about B'journaling. T'diarying? Oh no, that is MUCH worse, never mind.
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Monday, March 2nd, 2009

Time:8:04 pm.
Mood:The "I need to pee" mood.
Hey, remember the Internet?
Comments: Read 3 orAdd Your Own.

Saturday, May 24th, 2008

Subject:Mega City!!!
Time:9:50 pm.
I did the narration, and helped a little with the sound. It's based on a true story.

Comments: Read 2 orAdd Your Own.

Sunday, March 23rd, 2008

Time:10:03 pm.
Happy Easter. This is the best day to eat peeps. Today I have eaten both purple chick-style peeps, and also some bunny-style cocoa flavored peeps. That's right, cocoa. They're pretty good, if you like sugar (I do).
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Sunday, March 16th, 2008

Subject:The Game
Time:10:51 pm.
Hmm... Interesting. I guess it was getting pretty old.
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Subject:New Music.
Time:6:53 pm.
New Music on the ol' Myspace page. It's pretty cheesy. Check it out?
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Wednesday, February 20th, 2008

Time:2:56 pm.
Mood: apathetic.
'nother year older.
Comments: Read 3 orAdd Your Own.

Thursday, January 24th, 2008

Subject:Happy New Year, and such.
Time:6:45 pm.
So I've discovered that my college is falling apart. The thing is, I don't think this really matters. The College of Santa Fe is on the verge of declaring exigency, which allows them to fired tenured professors. Thing is, I have been pretty unhappy with the program for a while, and while the lack of solid staffing isn't going to help, it's really not a deciding factor. With that in mind, I have to decide what my academic future holds.

Right now, I am planning on applying to Union Institute, and I am taking classes at the community college to hold off my student loans in the mean time.
The two classes I am currently taking are Chinese II, and American Politics (or something with a similar name). So far they are both pretty interesting, so I'm doing okay.

For Christmas, I received a new laptop. It's fast and new and shiny and has a remote control, but it is running Vista. Vista is worse then XP was when it first came out. I like XP now, but it took a few years for things to stop sucking horribly. Now I have to wait a few more years. Blech.

I have a theory that the User-Friendly-Linux movement, such as Ubuntu, is dominated by people who don't understand how regular folk use computers, but they have one thing going for them, they know that they don't understand.

Having run Ubuntu/Kubuntu for a few months on multiple systems1, I felt like I sort of got where it was coming from. I thought, "It's just not ready for Mom's sewing room" if you'll pardon the cliche. The thing is, a lot of the problems I was having, I now understand, are not entirely about Linux. They were about hardware. Linux, when run on a machine that is setup specifically for Linux by someone who knows what he or she is doing2, is a wonder to behold. It may not have the breadth of software that even Apple has at this point, but it works and has its own selling points going for it.

The problem is, as I see it, that a free operating system is going to attract people like me- people who end up cobbling together their computers from bits and pieces. I know at least a bit about computers beyond Myspace and WoW, at least I thought I did, but even the beginner's section of the Ubuntu forums is rife with incomprehensible arcana that scares the shit out of me. Ubuntu is trying to be friendly, but it just doesn't even know where to begin3.

Now that I've used Vista, I have a slightly modified opinion. Vista feels like it was also made by people who don't know how regular folk use computers, but they seem to think they are experts. One of the main visuals used in Vista TV commercials was the [Win]+Tab combo, a boffo waste of time that, as far as I can tell, performs exactly the same function as [Alt]+Tab only requires a hell of a lot more video memory. I have yet to encounter any one UI feature of Vista that is better then either XP, or not having that feature at all. This is a classroom example of planed obsolescence, as far as I can tell.

So far it seems like Linux requires a fairly large commitment of time in order to get working because it lack so much basic functionality when it's installed, while Vista requires a likewise time investment to tinker with and disable those features that interfere with basic functionality. Linux: get a network printer running through WINE? Vista: disable the stupid fingerprint reader verisign crap? Either way, Shoot me now. Needless to say, they do not play well together in a network.

In other news, Tutorial is going pretty well, all things considered. The kids have problems, but they seem to deal with them pretty well with minimum interference from the adults. It's pretty awesome. I still do not have internet at my apartment, though. It is complicated, but involves running cables overhead and drilling and such.

I am planning on holding a potluck social at some point soon. I think it will be good to have a meeting of my friends who know how to cook and my broke friends who spend all their money at restaurants4. I'm thinking it will be a Sunday, because that is when people are not working and have time to cook? I dunno.

1. Yeah, I know, this doesn't make me an expert, or anything.
2. Not me, yet.
3. I suspect this is because Ubuntu is a collaboration amongst many different projects with differing agendas. The Gnome people are not the same as the Debian people, who are connected to but different from the Ubuntu people, and then if you use KDE you've got some other people, etc. I may be way off base on this, though.
4. I have a mental image of Micheal eating canned chili every meal. Say it ain't so, Mike!
Comments: Read 9 orAdd Your Own.

Tuesday, September 11th, 2007

Subject:Goats, etc.
Time:12:08 am.
I'm sorry, I know I've posted this before, but it is a really good story. A lack of goats, man, that gets me every time.

A lightning strike took out my laptop's modem and power brick, as well as the water pump and the telephone lines. This was right in the midst of a hard-core ceiling painting spree that left me totally disgusting and sweaty, so I was pretty upset about the lack of showering. The water pump and phone-lines have been fixed, and the ceiling in the school's big-room looks frickin' sweet, but I still have no laptop to speak of.
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Thursday, July 26th, 2007

Subject:Join pubes, Heart Khan!
Time:2:00 am.
If I rode my bike more, I would have the perfect anagram nick-name. Ethan Joseph Urbanik = Hub Spoke Heart Ninja!

I know at least one other person on my friends list has "Heart" in his name, and I strongly suspect at least one other. Anybody else? I'm talking anagrams here, people, cough 'um up!

Ponies? Bah! Heart-junk.
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Saturday, July 21st, 2007

Subject:Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Time:10:42 pm.
Oh. My. God.
Comments: Read 10 orAdd Your Own.

Time:2:41 am.
Mood: enthralled.
It is now 2:40 and I am 110 pages (out of 759) into Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows.

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Thursday, July 19th, 2007

Subject:The King of Comics Theory.
Time:2:22 am.
I just got back from Albuquerque where I saw Scott McCloud (and his daughter Sky McCloud) give an amazing lecture1. He mostly reitterated material from his books in powerpoint form, but he did it in a very amusing way. Of note, at one point he delved into Scott Pilgrim at length, and some of his more nerdy enthusiasm for comics leaked through his otherwise sagacious demeanor. I am presently in total love with Scott Pilgrim3, so I was totally okay with this.

The place the lecture was held was not so good. I mean, the people there were nice enough, and it wasn't infested with cockroaches or anything, but the place was about 2/3ds full, and the AC was not cutting it. This is partly Albuquerque's fault, since it was in the mid 90s well after the sun went down. Apparently Albuquerque is on its way to becoming the new Pheonix2. Even with all the lights out (for the projector) we were still all sweating up a storm.

After the lecture and Q and A, he hung around and signed books and talked with pretty much anybody who wanted to talk. After this, Scott and family, along with a group of people, including Jett, Serina, and myself, went to the Frontier and continued the discussion for another couple of hours. I was at the wrong end of the table to hear much of Scott, but Sky seems like a cool kid. She was very well versed in TV-lore, especially Veronica Mars and the Joss Whedon stuff, neither of which I am familier with. The whole family was a very loquacious group, and all in all it was an enjoyable evening.

Something I was thinking of on the drive home: Does anybody know the name for the kind of perspective used in games such as the Sim series? It's also used in a lot of 16-bit era RPG games, and one of my favorite 8-bit titles, Solstice. This is a perspective in which parallel lines do not converge, and therefore sizes do not diminish with distance. Scott McCloud mentions it in Making Comics, but he doesn't actually say if it has a name. For some reason I thought it was called Isomorphic Perspective, but I'm pretty sure this is just totally wrong and backwards.


1. It was probably only amazing if you were into comics, or at least storytelling. There were some advertising people there, because their boss told them to come, and from what I overheard some of them saying, they were a little bit boggled by the whole thing.

2. Except with more stabbings.

3. Three things I am looking forward to: Scott Pilgrim vol. 4, Harry Potter 7, and the Futurama Movies.
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Wednesday, July 11th, 2007

Time:12:27 am.

I found this Interview with Yoshirou Kimura, the developer of Chulip, to be informative. I especially like what he said about fighting games and game violence, which generally reflect my personal feelings on the matter:

I'm not criticizing fighting games. I myself love to play fighting games, so. But when I see so many violent games out there, I can't help reveling against them. The world should consist of different kinds of people, don't you think? So do the games.

I couldn't remember the html for paragraph quotes, so you have to deal with the italics.

What is also interesting about the interview is the rather rough English. This kind of parallels the roughness of Chulip, which is brilliant and witty, even if it is sloppy and unwieldy to actually play. I cannot really conceive of playing that game without the manual, which is a sparse but mostly complete walk-through. That's right, it pretty much requires a walk-through, at least for me, and somehow it works. It is not as obnoxious as it should be, and still manages to be charming. Weird.

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Thursday, June 21st, 2007

Time:5:50 pm.
Mood: optimistic.
A couple of days before the last auction, which I was not really looking forward to, I went to a rock concert at the new Warehouse 21. While there, I ran into my old friend Daniel. We used to be pretty tight back in the day but we drifted apart, as friends from high school often do.

Daniel, a friend of his who I can't remember, and I all skipped out on one of the opening bands and had dinner at Whole Foods. during the drive, he talked a lot about his new job, which he seems to be enjoying. It has plenty of opportunity for promotion, he is getting trained, and he is making connections in a field he is interested in. Needless to say, the turnover rate is much smaller then the gallery. The entire time he was talking about this, I kept thinking how much I hate my job. It's so full of drama and tension, and I don't really feel like I'm even qualified to be doing the work they want me to be doing.

The show itself, Dan Deacon, was excellent by the way.

I actually enjoyed the auction. After a couple of premature bids early on, I felt like I had finally started to get the hang of absentee bidding. Bidding on dozens of lots in five or six auction will do wonders for your confidence.

Last Tuesday, I was going to Ross to buy shoes when I ran into Juanita, the latest person to have been fired from the gallery. I thanked her for the mix CD she made for me and Chris when we went to New York, which was nothing but mega-obscure indie covers of obscure songs, like a cover of Joanna Newsom.

Anyway, she was talking about how weird it was that she got fired, and how it was actually a huge sense of relief. I told her, honestly, that I was feeling kind of jealous, and that I was also expecting to get fired any day now. It was nothing I could put my finger on, but the way the higher-ups had been treating me just gave me that sense. Of course, expecting to fired is pretty much a matter of common sense there, so I wasn't really going out on a limb. We wished each other well and went on our way.

Less then twenty minutes later, while trying on shoes at Ross, I got a call on my cell-phone telling me (in vague diplomatic evasions) that I was no longer working for the gallery.


It was all I could do to keep from bursting into laughter in the shoe department of Ross. Although it is obviously not a good thing to have happen, it did not make me feel bad at all. I just felt euphoric. Considering that I have some money saved up, it couldn't have come at a better time, either.

Anyway, if anybody knows of a cool non-permanent job that's somewhat mellow, let me know.
Comments: Read 6 orAdd Your Own.

Tuesday, June 12th, 2007

Time:8:58 pm.
Mood: depressed.
Apparently, Shigesato Itoi, the creator of Earthbound (Mother 2 as it's known in Japan), did one of the voices for "My Neighbour Totoro", and collaborated with Haruki Murakami on a short story collection. Let me say that again with italics: Haruki Murakami. This is the single greatest collection of short stories that will never be translated into English I have ever encountered. For what it's worth, I am part of the minority which feels that Earthbound was the best SNES RPG.
Comments: Read 2 orAdd Your Own.

Saturday, December 30th, 2006

Subject:New Year Song
Time:6:58 pm.
Mood: restless.
New Song. Only 37 seconds long.

What is up with all this snow? Golly. I haven't left the house in two days and I'm getting pretty stir-crazy. I'm going to go shovel my car out of the drive-way so I can visit my parents and get some home-made chili. I wonder if it's Cincinnati-style?
Comments: Add Your Own.

Friday, December 15th, 2006

Time:11:08 pm.
I posted a new song to my Myspace music page, (here). It's an old one that I revamped and rearranged to be slightly less boring. It's called "Gold Loves Ivan Karamazov", after one of my favorite misanthropic atheists in all of liturature. The song really has nothing to do with God or Ivan Karamazov, actually. To make room for it, I removed "Video Games as a Replacement for Relationships" because the high pitched saw-wave backing was getting on my nerves. Although it did have 150 listens, that's probably only because the title is vaguely interesting.
Comments: Add Your Own.

Tuesday, December 5th, 2006

Subject:I think Chris's was Better
Time:12:59 am.
So, here's how it works:
1. Open your library (iTunes, Winamp, Media Player, iPod, etc)
2. Put it on shuffle
3. Press play
4. For every question, type the song that's playing
5. When you go to a new question, press the next button
6. Don't lie and try to pretend you're cool...

Opening Credits:
Tassels from a Day Sale - Anticipation Overature
Waking Up:
Casino vs. Japan - Where to What For

First Day of School:
Magic Lamp - Vocalise(Rachmaninoff)

Falling in Love:
Operation Ivy - Knowledge

Fight Song:
Nouvelle Vague - Don't Go

Breaking Up:
Tree Wave - Sleep

The Residents - Santa Dog '99

Modern Lovers - When She Kisses Me

Mental Breakdown:
Devo - Working in a Coalmine

The Slow Road to Recovery
Freezepop - Super Sprode (Future Bible Heroes Remix)

Coheed and Cambria - A Favor House Atlantic

I Heart Metal - Throw Rome

Getting Back Together:
Flogging Molly - Between a Man and a Woman

L. Emmett Holt Jr. MD. - How a Baby is Concieved/How to Tell if you are pregnant

Birth of Child:
Mastadon - Iron Tusk

Final Battle:
Joanna Newsom - The Sprout and the Bean

Death Scene:
The Misfits (from Gem) - Blow this Town

Funeral Song:
Morcheeba - Life's Little Tragedy

End Credits:
Love Sculpture Sabre Dance
Comments: Read 2 orAdd Your Own.

Thursday, November 16th, 2006

Time:10:39 pm.
Mood: sleepy.
I'm going to listen to a loop of Solvent songs all night, while I sleep, just for the hell of it.
Comments: Read 1 orAdd Your Own.

LiveJournal for Mr. Centipede.

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