Tuesday's Dead
(28 March - 6 April 2003)

6 April 2003
-"Phone Booth" is a great movie.  It reminds me of "15 Minutes" from a couple years back... not because it's that much like it, but because they're great in the same way.  & it seems a LOT longer than its 80-minute run-time.
-All-vegetarian restaurants are the way to go.
-One day off in seven is insufficient.  Highly insufficient.

5 April 2003
-Oh cycles, how I hate you.  The cruelest month is underway.
-My main duty at CU-Concord today will be changing every clock on campus so that on Monday morning, they will read the correct time.
-I have created a NationStates region called Debatopia.  All are welcome to move over to it.

4 April 2003
-The following is not directed at anyone who reads this webpage.  It is directed at people who I am contracted not to yell at in person...  You do not know me better than I know myself.  You do not know the template of humanity.  You do not know everything about everyone, or even very much about anyone else.  Do not tell me what I will be like in five or ten or twenty years.  You are wrong.  I do not want to waste more time than I already have, & do everyday.  I do not want what you want, nor what you want me to want.  I am not preprogrammed to consume, not a robot of desiring objects like you.  I do not wish to acquire meaningless degrees & add to the dent on my forehead from too much repeated contact with the wall.  Please stop telling me who you think I am.
-Today was mostly awful.  I've been lucky about migraines lately, which is always destined to catch up with me.  The headache was bordering on unbearable when they took blood from me, which sent it over the edge.  Fortunately, however, it was a TB test, not a vaccine, so instead of getting a little disease, I have a peculiar bump on my arm.  & I feel like crap-on-stick.
-The good thing that happened to me today was the Blazers game.  In my first ever NBA visit (Em's birthday gift for me), we saw Portland roll over the Golden State Warriors 122-100.  It was amazing.  Even if they had lost, it would have been worth it to see Rasheed Wallace dunk a basketball that physics should not have allowed him to catch on an alley-oop for a one-handed dunk.  It was by far the best play I can ever remember seeing in basketball, & I saw it in person.  So sweet.
-Bush Promises SARS Quarantine Will Uphold His Usual Human Rights Standard...  Amnesty International ready to protest already.  Taking a brief break from ordering murder, George W. Bush announced today that SARS is the first disease in 20 years that justifies quarantining people against their will.  Staking his sterling civil liberties reputation on the move, Bush promised that no one will abuse the fact that this disease is "mysterious", similar in symptoms to the cold & flu, or allegedly comes from foreign lands.  "There is no way we would use this to round up Asians or dissenters who have a slight cough," said spokesman Ari Fleischer.  "Nor would we even think about sending the quarantined to Guantanamo Bay."

3 April 2003
-On 8 April, Emily's thesis will be a year old.  So will my Dad having a webpage.  Finally, that will be the day that AIM stops skimming $7.50 an hour off of my paycheck from JMMC.  Yup, that's $189.50 a week they've taken from me for 5 weeks now.  If I think I do little work for the money, I should remember how corporate America manages to REALLY do NO work for the money.  Anyway, this all means that I'll be working 5 hours/week LESS, but making more money from that job.  Go figure.
-Meanwhile, my compatriates at CU-Fairfield are ribbing me about not worrying enough about money.  What else is new?  Well, the main thing that's new is that they are ribbing me for "settling" for roughly $32k/year.  !!  Sometimes, (by which I mean all times) this country makes me sick.
-What might also make me sick is that JMMC requires an annual TB shot to work there.  Starting tomorrow.  & here I thought I would have fun at the Blazers game...  It seems that TB is a pretty random vaccine to be required to be jammed into my bloodstream.  I guess I'll just do one-armed cheering from the bleachers at the game.

2 April 2003
-It would seem that Steve Yuhan really cares about not being in italics on the BP People page.  Or more likely, he just feels that he should update once every 42 days.
-American Patient of War (POW) Rescued from Medical Care... in a bold & daring move yesterday, American forces invaded a hospital & removed an American Private from her medical care.  No word yet on whether a malpractice suit against the Iraqi hospital will be brought.  Jessica Lynch was being heavily guarded by doctors & nurses at the Saddam Hospital in Nasiriya.  But as soon as the Americans showed up, they quickly & politely showed them to Lynch's room.  Though she had been dropped off by the Iraqi military (clearly subjecting her to the torture that is medical care!), the military had not monitored her stay after leaving her at the Hospital days before.  Nonetheless, the Americans are convinced that Lynch's rescue shows the triumph of American bravery over Iraqi barbarism.  Other daring rescues, such as the release of journalists from their hotels or the release of volunteer human shields from their positions, may still lie ahead.  (Note:  this is actually 100% true, adding only small liberties of tone to the BBC-reported facts of the "rescue".)
-Journalists Suffer .4% of US Punishment for Crime Committed in Iraq... 3 American journalists were released recently in Jordan after being detained in Iraq for 8 full days for passport violations.  The maximum sentence for the same crime they committed in the United States is five years in prison &/or a quarter-million dollar fine.  Given that this is war-time, however, & that the journalists are from the enemy nation, it is difficult to say whether more than the maximum would have been imposed in a reverse situation, citing some sort of potential for spying.  The journalists admitted to knowingly committing the violations at a press conference in Jordan today.  Had they been Iraqis in the US, it is likely they would have spent the rest of the war (or much longer) in Guantanamo Bay as enemy combatants.  Instead, they complained about 8 days of normal prison treatment in Baghdad.  (Note:  as above, this one is all true.)
-The last 24 hours have actually been okay for my mood, something that hasn't really happened much lately.  I'm still bowled over by the futility of jobs, the state of the planet, & my mind, but somehow I've been able to table the irresolution that such bowling over brings.  At least today.  No, World, I am really not asking for it, I'm just saying.
-Also, the QualTracker at my Nats page is updated, finally.  & the normal Stats/Search update was done on Monday.
-Lisha's site recommended NationStates & now I do too.  The fact that this is their analysis of my country makes me smile:  "The United Socialist States of The Blue Pyramid is a tiny, environmentally stunning nation, notable for its punitive income tax rates. Its compassionate, intelligent population of 5 million love a good election, and the government gives them plenty of them. Universities tend to be full of students debating the merits of various civil and political rights, while businesses are tightly regulated and the wealthy viewed with suspicion. It is difficult to tell where the omnipresent, socially-minded government stops and the rest of society begins, but it devotes most of its attentions to Social Welfare, with areas such as Defence and Law & Order receiving almost no funds by comparison. The average income tax rate is 71%, and even higher for the wealthy. Private enterprise is illegal, but for those in the know there is a slick and highly efficient black market in Cheese Exports. Crime is totally unknown. The Blue Pyramid's national animal is the duck, which frolics freely in the nation's many lush forests, and its currency is the nothing."

1 April 2003
-It is a Tuesday of the first order.
-This morning I said something extremely inconsiderate to two McDonald's employees.  While I was very angry at the time for a variety of circumstances, that was no reason to take my anger out on these individuals.  I have decided, however, in order to curb future frustration, to personally boycott McDonald's for their consistent refusal to recognize vegetarians as people who eat.
-I have noticed a strange trend that seems limited to JMMC, making me wonder if it's a medically oriented trend.  People rarely say "bless you" anymore.  In fact, though I have sneezed upwards of fifty times on the job at JMMC, not one person has wished that the devil not snatch my soul away.  While I agree in principle that saying "bless you" is both archaic & dubious, given that there is no devil, I think I am still accustomed to hearing it in polite company.  Perhaps mine will be the last generation so accustomed.
-To this day, I am not very adept with folding or with scissors.
-America Liberates Iraqi Citizens from Their Lives... officials say they hope they find a "better place" than Earth.  Putting the Checkpoint Charlie back in checkpoints, American soldiers have killed between eight & eleven Iraqi civilians, mostly women & children, in two separate incidents in the last 24 hours.  When asked why they chose to shoot the people in vehicles who refused to stop at checkpoints before shooting the vehicles' tires, an anonymous assassin said "Their tires weren't being oppressed by Saddam!"  Meanwhile, Donald Rumsfeld & Tommy Franks continued to express confusion as to why more Iraqi civilians weren't approaching their military unarmed to receive "liberation".  Franks said the soldiers followed procedure to the letter in his defense of the shootings.  "They just killed unarmed kids," he said, "it's not like they granted an interview to Iraqi state TV or something truly awful!"
-America is at war with Eurasia, America has always been at war with Eurasia.  See?

31 March 2003
-Pando is apparently missing one of her back claws.  Though my initial reaction was that it would be time to run to the vet, my JMMC boss suggests that such action would be none too helpful, & has advised some home treatment mechanisms.  I'm sure Pando will be really pumped about those.  Nonetheless, this discovery of her pain explained a lot of her ornery behavior in recent days.
-Freedom of Press Repealed in USA, Other Nations May Follow... in a stunning move yesterday, NBC fired Peter Arnett, almost undoubtedly the most distinguished & experienced journalist covering the war in Iraq from Iraq.  This after the network had initially defended Arnett's actions, which were giving an interview to Iraqi state television that said what half the American generals are saying about the status of the war being unpredicted.  But the defense evaporated with the words "It was wrong for him to grant an interview to state-run Iraqi TV, especially in a time of war."  Keep in mind that this was an interview initially approved by NBC.  This hypocrisy has been met only with shock that Peter Arnett dare say something that would contradict the American military while he himself is not wearing an American military uniform.  In a related story, FoxNews will now run the slogan "Bombs don't kill, Iraqis do." instead of the "roll" on the bottom of its screen.  Other networks are expected to fall in line, or face deportation of their top executives & reporters to Iran.
-March, as it always does, came in like the craziness, & goes out in similar fashion.

30 March 2003
Happy Birthday to Matt McFeeley
-Today we got up early (I can't not get up early any more) & we did 10 loads of laundry, costing $24.50.  This reality would indicate both that if we had room, we should invest in a washer/dryer (we don't have room), & also that laundromats do in fact make more profit than any other institution in the world (by percentage, at least).  There isn't even someone who runs this place... the only people at Launderland are the people feeding quarters into the machines.  No person-based overhead, just buy the machines, rent the place, & clean it up once a week.  Money like crazy.
-Speaking of money like crazy, we finally did our tax forms.  These revealed that various states & the feds withheld money from us, & now it's time for them to give it all back.  This will cover a few sessions of 10-load laundry, or an equal number of tanks of gas.
-I had a good mood for a few hours today, something almost unprecedented in the past week or so.  The mind-numbing process of filling out four tax forms (at least New Mexico's was online) erased it.
-There is no such thing as terrorism against a purely military target.  It's a syntax error.

29 March 2003
-War IS crime.  Everything that takes place in war is considered a crime in all other circumstances.  The only thing that makes it appear justified is the hate of the people perpetrating it.  To talk of war crimes continues, as it always has been, to be absurd.
-Even when I feel good about my day at CU-Concord as I walk out to the parking lot, the frustrations of the way people drive between Concord & Berkeley on Saturday afternoons always saps whatever energy I have.  It's all lost by the time I hit Curtis Street.
-US Military Sues Iraqi Military Over Copyright Violations on Fear, Intimidation... after the recent suicide bombing of American military personnel, the US goverment has filed suit over copyright violations on the concepts of fear & intimidation.  "We have a clear monopoly on the use of those tactics," said George W. Bush, "and Iraq has clearly violated international standards by attempting to use the same tactics.  Fighting back is vaguely acceptable in a calm, submissive, & completely ineffective manner.  Anything that goes beyond that is our exclusive right."  The indignation of Bush & his military over Iraq's endorsement of this bombing seems to be finding little hope of redress, however.  They have filed suit in the International Criminal Court, of which the US is not a signatory & thus cannot argue its case.

28 March 2003
-Lots of people that I don't like tend to show up in my dreams.  Also, car accidents continue to be an almost dominant theme in them.
-A great deal of my job at JMMC consists of running the ILL department, which is almost 100% the distribution of article copies.  Today, I faxed an article to Carson Tahoe Hospital.  This is where I was born.
-Top Aides Inform Rumsfeld That Damascus is a Biblical City... as a result, Rumsfeld immediately made motions towards justifying the upcoming assault on Syria.  In the mission the Bush administration has covertly labeled "Bible Belt II:  Revenge of Arabia", officials are taking steps towards uniting all lands referred to in the Bible under American control, or "dominance" to use Colin Powell's actual wording.  The move helped justify the destruction of a civilian passenger bus heading from Iraq to Syria that the US admitted to bombing earlier in the week.  "We suspect there is some secret bus-passenger for nightvision-goggle smuggling trade," Rumsfeld continued, "and we see both as war crimes and direct threats to Empire Security."
-UK Officer Admits Report of Basra Uprising was "Educated Hunch"... after reporting to headlines of the world that there was a strong civilian uprising in Basra a few days ago, the reporting UK military has been held to standards such as "truth" & "facts".  After admitting that they had not seen so much as one person engaged in an uprising, & hearing reports by actual journalists in Basra who had seen no such individuals, they have explained the actual situation.  "We had some tea," said one officer who refused to give his name, "and this bloke who drives the tank says he knows how to read the leaves.  So we give it a try.  They say there's a Labor rally for Blair in downtown Basra.  So that gave us a, well, an educated hunch, you know mate?"

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