It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)
(8-17 October 2004)

17 October 2004
-For the love of God, when will I be able to realize that the very vaguest hint of a sore throat means it is time to act immediately?!  Without worrying about how warm I am at the moment, I have to smush any sort of sickness!  Maybe if I write about this enough, I will realize just how vital it is to take sore throat threats seriously, even if I just had one a few months back.  UGH!
-Being told one has to stay at work when one is very sick is really not the best.  But when it's 3 per house, that's the only safe thing to do.

16 October 2004
-On a combination of whim & my Dad's suggestion, Em & I went down to Half Moon Bay for their annual Pumpkin Festival.  A mistake on several counts.  For one thing, the traffic into HMB was backed up for miles upon miles, literally bumper to bumper.  When we did get through the hour of extra traffic, we realized that one single traffic cop was responsible for the entire back-up.  Upon arriving at the festival, we realized that this wasn't really our scene.  In retrospect, I don't really know what I was expecting or hoping for, but it wasn't an over-commercialized & un-spooky celebration of capitalism & trinkets.  There were a few neat things, like the various pumpkin patches, but we were so bummed by everything that we mostly turned around & got stuck in more traffic caused by the same traffic cop.  The low tide of the sine curve rolls on.
-I was incredibly excited to discover that not only is there a 2004 version of one of my favorite old computer games, Power Politics, but it's available for free online!  There is a $30 version that gives you the full candidate list of yore, updated for 2004, but the Bush/Kerry/Nader race is free!  It was a little disappointing in actual gameplay, but it's still exciting stuff.

15 October 2004
-Opened up poker nights again last night with a whopping $61 win that lasted till 6:30 in the morning.  The crew was primarily made up of my co-workers, given that my newest co-worker Cameron & I cooked up the idea.  Overnight Edwin claimed to be a rookie but sharked us pretty well before Cameron & I ended up heads-up for the $56 in chips on the table (I had pocketed $5 profit already).  I proceeded to take his entire stack over the course of about an hour's worth of hands & came away the big winner.  The whole thing was a blast, though it went way too late.  Right now, however, I'm in no position to protest.
-I'm just down these days in way I can't fully explain.  It just seems hard to be in a good mood.

14 October 2004
-One really can just get away with missing flights.  While I've never done it, so many people I know have, some even regularly.
-Setlist from yesterday is up.  While I wrote it during the show, it was already up at this morning.
-Also updated (finally) the State Quiz Stats.  South Carolina is gaining on Nevada, but things stay relatively consistent... though not quite as rigidly consistent as the new quiz poll discussed earlier.

13 October 2004
-Meetings don't have to hurt.
-The fifth Dylan show I've attended may have been the best, though this didn't seem to be the consensus among those who attended with me.  For one thing, it was in a tiny venue (The Grand Ballroom at the Regency Center, this little place at Van Ness & Sutter in the city).  Fish & I waited outside from four o'clock in the afternoon, but apparently the line had started before nine in the morning, so we ended up in about the sixth or seventh row on the floor.  Still as close to Dylan as we will probably ever get in our lives.  We were able to pull Em & Stina into the line just before the doors opened & watch a tremendous amount of drug use before the show got going.  The entire show itself seemed like a warning to me.  There was a very October feel to the show, down to the black backdrop & outfits with orange lighting.  "It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)" was incredible, almost spat out in anger by Bob.  There were several ominous songs, including "This Wheel's On Fire" (which I didn't really know, but truly appreciated during the show), "Ballad of Hollis Brown", "Ballad of a Thin Man", & an incredible "Watchtower" to close the encore.  "Tonight I'll Be Staying Here with You" was a special treat, & I liked hearing "Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum" within weeks of a presidential election.  Overall, while the set was a little strange, it seemed to have a clear message of something looming & dark.  There was also tremendous energy in the show, something I didn't quite expect.  Overall, it was an amazing experience.  Both Em & Fish were pretty disappointed by the show, unfortunately, though I think that was colored in part by both being exhausted by work these days.  Fish pushed back a flight to see it that he's rescheduled for early next morning, & will be gone for almost 2 weeks.

12 October 2004
-The nights where one comes home & says "I got hit today" are almost always the hardest.  But it wasn't that hard, or at least the hits weren't.  But without the opportunity to come back to work tomorrow (beyond meetings), I wonder if this one will get blown up in my head more than usual.  Days like this always make me think about how many jobs don't carry the risk of getting hit, but those thoughts usually don't last long.
-I've noticed a very strange trend in the current quiz poll that I've been running to determine the 4th BP Quiz.  The percentages for each of the 8 options have been almost constant from when there were 20 votes cast till now (current vote count is 329).  I've checked it many many times over the course of that progression, & noted the startling consistency of the relative rank & percentages for the 8 choices.  It's as though I could've stopped the poll after two days & known what the results would be after a month.  How did I get a perfect sampling size at every step of the way?  Doesn't this consistency seem odd?

11 October 2004
-Whew.  Thank goodness for backup.
-I've started a fantasy basketball league for this year & if anyone wants to join, they should send me an e-mail.  I've been meaning to send out a big e-mail to those who've played before, but I haven't gotten to it yet.
-The Animal Quiz & The University Quiz are in a pitched struggle for rights to join the BluePyramid InterActive quiz team.  No promises yet, but one of them may be out before 2005.
-A whirlwind day.

10 October 2004
-A good solid very chill day.  Lots of driving & walking, but work continues to provide stability.  & that's all right for me today.
-Another poker night possibility really gets me pumped.

9 October 2004
-"Silver City" was disappointing, & seemed like it would've been revolutionary (or really interesting) in 1988.  Stina tells me it's a parody of film noir &/or a satire, but I wasn't laughing & the film was in full color.  Enh.
-I wish Ray Bradbury would write forever.

8 October 2004
-Sweet blessed traditions.
-So going to a group home at 6 in the morning is not recommended.  I had a receipt to drop off & after almost getting completely lost in San Leandro on the drive from the airport to the house, I wound up scaring the overnights.  Yes, I recognized, I should've called ahead.  Who knew they propped chairs under the doorknobs?
-John Kerry & George W. Bush really don't know how to debate.  I would've loved the chance to give some of the response speeches for both sides.  They had so many opportunities to turn arguments had they actually been listening to each other rather than returning to their talking points & waiting their turn to speak.  If they had actually engaged each other's arguments, one of them could've earned a decisive win.  As it was, it was like watching two speeches pass in the night.

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