Out of the Silent Planet
(25 July - 3 August 2005)

3 August 2005
-Exit Fish, stage Wisconsin.
-Enter Stina.  I really am running an airport shuttle service these days.  Good thing I have some time & I like airports.

2 August 2005
Happy Birthday to Steve Rabin
-Exit Russ.  Had a great time, though there was much coming & going & upheaval overall during his stay.
-Life is never boring.  Emotions are never stagnant.  Uncertainty is never far.

1 August 2005
-Enter Gris & Anna.  They made ridiculous time coming all the way from Nuevo.  Although they ended up bypassing LA, so it makes a little more sense.
-Ow.  There was a special on bowling in San Leandro & we (Russ, Fish, & I) ended up bowling 2 full series.  Every game I rolled was between 125-163 (163 was the high game amongst us all, by a point), so nothing was stellar, but nothing atrocious either given how long it's been since I've bowled.  I couldn't buy a strike, averaging less than one a game, but I ended up picking up the bulk of my spares, including 5 consecutive 9-spares that really should have included some strikes.

31 July 2005
-It's been a standard video-game fiesta for Russ & myself, but scattered amongst a few games instead of focusing on just one (say, FIFA) as usual.  Fish has gotten in on most of it as well.  We've wanted to throw in a movie too, but there is absolutely nothing out.

30 July 2005
-So.  Much.  Bond.

29 July 2005
-A true poker night for the ages last night.  We had definitely been a little lackluster or non-existent for a while, & returned with a bang including 13 people seated at one table for a while, & an absurd streak of 7 consecutive wins by players going all-in which prevented re-buys for the first 90 minutes.  We had 3 Seneca Center workers, 3 Seneca Center alumni, 3 residents of the Big Blue House, & 3 Brandeis debate alumni.  Also, Zimmy & Elena could not be stopped.  Especially Zimmy.
-It is a fact that once one starts a new best-of-seven series on All-Star Baseball 2003, one will finish that series before sleeping.  Even though they inevitably take roughly an hour per game, & always go 6 or 7 games, & involve breaking half of each team's pitching staff.  Fun.
-Many more people joining the done-with-HP ranks, & many of them seem to hold the same conviction that I do about what we'll find in Book 7.  & that's all I can say & still be good about my no-spoilers policy.

28 July 2005
-The random squiggles issue with the Search of the Week page is really starting to get to me, mostly because it's multiplying in the Imports directory.  Now the original Search of the Week is similarly corrupted.  Maybe there's a problem with the whole directory.  I only edited the original because I noted that it's the #1 Google hit for the phrase "search of the week" & I wanted to make sure that people knew there was a newly updated one.  Of course, as I go back to look at this information again, I note that the new SOTW is the #2 Google hit, & there are only 638 total pages with that phrase in quotes, so it isn't really a big deal at all.  Ah well.  Once again, if anyone has information leading to the capture & removal of these random squiggles at the top of the SOTW pages, you will be rewarded.  In some way to be determined.
-Amy is skeptical of Morgan Spurlock becoming my hero, & pointed me to a blog detailing why I should be too.  While I don't believe everything that any Libertarian says on face (it's just bad policy), I must admit that there seem to be some holes in Spurlock's methods & perhaps motives.  I happen to agree with Spurlock's stands on most issues, but I must realize that he is probably more ends-based than means-based, which is always troubling for me.  In summation, I should probably hold any figure dealing primarily in the media to the same strict scrutiny as American politicians... default to not trusting a word they say, & force them to work very hard to overcome that default.  Right now, Barbara Lee & Peter Camejo are probably the only people who really pass that test.  Not that Camejo can really be seen as a politician, since he's never held office.  I might throw Dennis Kucinich on that list too, but I think he ended up saying he supported John Kerry.  & no, Amy, there's no Libertarian-based website you can point me to that will derail my faith in Lee or Camejo.  Don't let this go to your head.
-Exit Stina.
-Enter Russ.

27 July 2005
-Morgan Spurlock is rapidly becoming my hero.  "Super Size Me" was good, but his new 30 Days show is excellent.  It's basically a mini-documentary like the movie, but with different people in different polar-opposite situations to open their eyes to different perspectives.  For example, well-off people spending 30 days on minimum wage, or a Christian living as a Muslim in America for 30 days.  It's the smartest reality show ever.
-Also want to drop a shout-out to Get Fuzzy.  This was rapidly climbing my all-time comic charts while I was still reading newspapers, & now it's nice to know that you don't really need newspapers to get the comics anymore.  Sweet sweet internet.
-If anyone's been thinking about submitting to the Book List lately, but just hasn't gotten around to it, the time is NOW.  I'm about to update it & as the file is so unwieldy & requires massive renumbering, I only end up updating it once or twice a year.  One of those onces is coming up in the next day or so, so get in under the wire!

26 July 2005
-Fish & I got our "Academy Current"s today & I noted that not a single 1998er submitted an alumni update.  Every class graduating after '98 has at least one update, as does every class before '98 all the way back till 1984.  Go us.

25 July 2005
-Feeling really good about the state of things.  Sure, it doesn't hurt that I'm 100% migraine-free after dealing with a low-level bob-&-weaver for about 6 days.  More than anything, I feel uncannily focused.  There is an air of promise about, of things to be done & joy in doing them.  Since April or perhaps even before, I've rarely felt this way.  This is a great place to be.
-So I was reading Lisha's page about Amber turning 23... & my gut, without helping it, thought "Wait!  Amber can't be the same age I am!  That's just impossible!"  Before of course realizing that she's still 2 years younger than I am, making me 25!!  Ack!  I still feel like I'm 18, but I can learn to realize that I'm actually 23.  Realizing that I'm actually actually 25 is just too much.  It's like Seneca was a black hole of time, which in some ways, it was.
-Luke may have one of the most under-appreciated blogs I know of.  He recently went to an interview series with Microsoft, & produced the following sentence:  "For example, he asked me what one thing I'd change about Windows, which is like asking someone to choose one starving child in a foreign country to feed..."  I, as the parlance goes, rolled on the floor laughing.  Copters.
-Okay, seriously people.  No one in the media is raising any eyebrows at a coordinated attack in London that follows an almost identical pattern to the one two weeks earlier in which everything fails to detonate?  What are the realistic odds of this happening?  Either they just used faulty equipment for the whole project, which no one has reported as being the case, or the things weren't meant to detonate & there is something else going on here.  But no one is talking about that.  Everyone's acting like it's the most normal thing in the world that a coordinated attack would result in perfectly coordinated non-detonation.  Am I the only one who thinks this is strange?
-Been finally doing some intensive work with the RMI Railworks site.  I guess I haven't yet mentioned that revamping said site, adding some e-commerce to it, & so on is to be my new job.  Unclear what the parameters are or how long it will last, but that's my "employ" for the time being!
-Also, more advertising on the site.  I suppose this has a professional tilt to it as well, as I would not know about Green Tie Poker were Morgan (Fish's sister) not spending her summer working for them.  There may be one or two more advertisers eventually, but once I've filled up the top of a quiz page, I'm going to stop.
-Changed up the front page of the BP again a bit, mostly to make the "above-the-fold" part of the page contain more direct content, even if it isn't (& can't be) well-explained.  The idea is to be more like a CNN front-page, I suppose... Fish & Em have worked on convincing me that this is better than forcing people to scroll down for cotent.  The sacrifice, obviously, is that people don't know what they're getting unless they already know the name of segments of the page... or can deduce it (some are easier to deduce than others).  Regardless, let me know what you think of the new design!

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