The Story of the Blessing of El-ahrairah
(19-28 October 2000)

28 October 2000
[from New York City]
-How many citrus peels can YOU pack into a coffee maker?
-Amazing how I can get my voice going just for debate rounds & nothing else.  My motivations are some very strange things indeed.
-Jessica L. Hass, my personal translator.
-You have no iDEA how frustrating it is to have NO VOICE at a DEBATE TOURNAMENT.
-No BNL for me.
-I will never really know what to think of Dave Silverman.  At all.  It's hard to have people in my life that I'm forced to reserve judgment on because the judgments are so mixed.  Hm.
-Yay saying goodbye.  Yay hope.
-There's still a word for that...

27 October 2000
-Something about these sunrise over the Beantown skyline just convinces me that it all works out.  & conversations with Brandzy rarely hurt that.  Now there's just the having 3 hours before I leave town for NYC & having not slept thing.  Not a big deal, despite my recent busyness.  As Hootie might say, "I have seen all the fuss & it's no big deal..."

26 October 2000
-Speaking of having fun.  The Hootie & the Blowfish concert (last night, technically, as it's now 1 in the morning), was beyond incredible.  I'm still in awe of how much fun it was.  I've determined that seeing a concert is for appreciating a band what visiting a foreign country is for learning that country's language.  I think this show enters a 3-way-tie for favorite show of all-time with the CC show last November & the Simon/Dylan show in 'Zona the summer prior.  But wow.  They played a 26-song set, which included 3 (count 'em, THREE) encores, & played all my favorites save one.  They don't play with a setlist, they just talk every few songs about what to play next & just keep going!  But the order of the show, the presentation, the theme, was all simply amazing.  The show was all about lost love & the possibility of death looming around corners, yet joy & peace emerging throughout.  I can't fully explain it.  The setlist will do justice to those who truly love Hootie, but those people are unfortunately few & far between.  Spending an evening with a whole ton of such people was great though.  Did I mention yet that I was in the SECOND row of the show, just barely out of reach of the stage?  Well I was.  Which brought the whole thing to the next level.  I haven't had that much fun in a goodly long time.  Neat neat neat!  I'm pumped (clearly).  But it's more than pumped.  I felt like that show was speaking to me at various points.  Sure, I know, everyone interprets their own garbage outta music they like.  But the juxtaposition of "Running from an Angel" & "What Do You Want from Me Now" was one that particularly struck me - those being the only 2 Hootie songs on a tape I made a year & a half ago.  The closing also just blew me away... all 6 encore songs struck a chord, but especially "Only Wanna Be with You" (its "Blood on the Tracks" references of pertinent relevance), followed by "Michelle Post" (beautifully acoustically done, quieting down the whole crowd), followed by "Love the One You're With", which wasn't my favorite song to end it on but certainly made sense in the context.  It was all just beautiful.
-&, on a musical roll, I just found out for sure that I'm seeing BNL with Kate & friends after the Columbia tourney this weekend.  The show's in Philly on Saturday!  How much cooler can things get these days?
-Doggone it... I hate it when people cut off communication.  I mean, really.  The hate of that doesn't go away.  Especially when there's no compelling reason for one to do such a cut-off.  As if there IS a compelling reason that's conceivable.  But I hate seeing someone & thinking (gut-reaction) that I should say something, then realizing they're being petty & stupid & thus silence must reign.  You know, when I tell people up front that I don't want them to cut off communication, I wish they'd listen!

25 October 2000
-Fish & I are both content at college!  Stop the presses!  I don't know if we can handle this balanced equilibrium...
-All I really have to do today & tomorrow is have fun.  How spiffy is that?

24 October 2000
-Well, I suppose the universe went on a prompt mission to make me eat my words about not having people around.  Yesterday ended up becoming a fiesta of friends, primarily led by the sudden one-day appearance of ARIELA!  She took a random day off work & a bus up to Beantown, & I would have seen even more of her had I not had 4 hours of work.  But we still hung out & it was fabulous & I love that girl to pieces.
-Catch it while you can!  Purely for silly bragging rights, everyone has to go check out the current debate rankings.  This is actually a slightly different website from the one previously linked.  In the wake of the Middlebury tourney, I'm currently the 3rd-ranked speaker (see "SOTY" or speaker-of-the-year) in the country.  I want you to check this out now because I can't imagine this will last even through the end of the week & while I never want winning to be my primary goal in this event, it is kinda reaffirming to have this spot for now.
-You know what's even cooler about the rankings?  Zirk's 4th behind my 3rd, by half a rating point.  This may be the highest that two regular teammates have ever both been on the board this far into the year.  Teams aren't supposed to be this even...  Would you like a cow with that?
-John absolutely kills me.
-Wow... what is this?  A moment to breathe?  On a TUESday?  I'm not sure I buy this.
-I am not appropriate.

23 October 2000
-& I thought the last time I slept outside this year would be at the Grand Canyon.  Well, that was really cool.  Unfortunate that even "sleeping for peace" can't keep the nightmares away.
-After last Thursday, 2 papers due by 3:30 today looks like a piece of cake.  & it is.
-Now I have to see about that "U" in PE.  Stop laughing about my PE requirement, Freez, it was my only subpar midterm grade!  This is serious stuff!  Honestly!  STOP laughing.... sigh, I give up...
-"The American Civil War couldn't have caused the American Revolution!" -Prof. Black, on the theory of causality through history.  & he still thinks I do the reading for my papers, which I bet he thinks take me longer than 90 minutes.  Silly Prof. Black, the readings are for kids!
-New Hootie album tomorrow... ay, the anticipation!
-I'm realizing how much, in all things academic, I hate pursuing things that for obvious reasons are founded on untruths.  This is why I rejected science circa the introduction of Newton's laws & why I don't like my Personal Identity class much because it's reliant on memory-based identity (Locke) &/or no identity (Hume).  It all strikes me as working really hard to understand the details of a lie after rejecting it as a lie.  This also happens to be why I don't want to get near democratic politics.
-The only thing worse that being in a bad mood is being in a really good mood & just not having anyone to share it with.  Welcome to loneliness, continued.

22 October 2000
-The world in turmoil.  Lives in turmoil.  A good weekend, this does not offset.

21 October 2000
[from Middlebury, Vermont]
-What a fun tournament.  Seriously.  If I had this much fun at every debate tourney, I'd be set.  I told Tirrell that I'd debate every weekend, but I already do that.  Oh well.  I was just happy to get the dancing portion of the party going.  Really, that's all one can ask for at "parties".  It may be the only thing I enjoy that others of my age also seem to enjoy.  That's just me being cynical, & I don't feel very cynical right now.
-SHANNON!  The randomness of seeing people is uncanny beyond compare.  Neither of us go to Middlebury, & she & her friend really had no particular reason to be waltzing around Bicentennial Hall in early afternoon.  & yet.  How cool is that?  I'm utterly mind-blown, but in such a good way.
-Good times, good debating.  I have no complaints, despite the semi round result.  Really.
-It's all a little surreal.  Very little hasn't been surreal the past few days.  But still.

20 October 2000
-At bottom, poker really is a game of will & heart.
-Kate has now officially neglected her site (linked above) for a full month.  But we still love her anyway.  & I know, I should have called her this week, but it's been a maddeningly hectic time.  Crud.
-A few days later, I still have a silly amount of e-mail in need of being written.  & before I head for Vermont too.  Compared to yesterday, my Beinecke application & studying for Kant midterm is a light night!
-Some days, I get euphoric.  I can take on the world!  Ay, ME GUSTA!  You like dat?  How d'ya like me now?!

19 October 2000
-I really do talk to myself a lot.
-In this rain, I can make my orange juice last twice as long!
-Signs are such a funky thing.  It's hard to know when one is overt & when it's just implied; when something is really trying to pass you an urgent note or just slip a footnote away for the files of future reference.  There's virtually no telling sometimes.  Till later.  Often till too late.
-Right now, at quarter till 3 in the morning, things are not functioning.  Period.
-Recap of the last 12 hours... 6-8:  sleep; 8-12:  write 2 5-page papers & get another hour of sleep in between; 12-1:  turn in papers, go to class; 1-2:  eat lunch; 2-3:  do Truman Scholarship application in entirity;  3-6:  work at the library.  That's what I like to think of as a moderately full day.


Introspection, My Worst Friend* (Current)
Ye Olde Archive (Past)

Tell me this is not the end...*

*-lyrics from an as-yet unreleased song, "The Same Old Frontiers", by SWClayton.