:: Pedantic Platitudes ::

Greetings! My name is Sam J and I am a student at Harvard University. Perhaps this blog will present a little look into the mundane yet unique events that make up my life.
:: welcome to Pedantic Platitudes :: bloghome | photos | contact ::
:: The Gift Ideas Blog - Gifts, Gift Ideas, Gift Baskets, Christmas Gifts, more! [>]
:: Mickeypedia - The Disney Encyclopedia! [>]
:: Idiot Celebrities - a blog about celebrity rumors and gossip [>]
:: The Disney Review [>]
:: Get a free Photo iPod! [>]
:: The Disneyland Report - Disney News and Secrets [>]
:: MySpace [>]
:: Google News [>]
:: Harvard University [>]
:: The Rainforest Site [>]
:: A Birdseye View of My Life [>]
:: Greetings from the Deep South [>]
:: In the mind of a conflicted mad man [>]
:: PiscesDreams.com [>]
:: Alex Ho's LiveJournal [>]
:: Harvard Blogs [>]
:: MBHS 2002 Yahoo Group [>]

:: Wednesday, December 31, 2003 ::

Happy New Year's Eve!!!

Today, I went to work, and I was assigned to do some reporting. I started writing a story about a fascinating man who regained his vision after 40 years of blindness. It was cool to write a story again. I hadn't expected to write any stories this week because I thought I was going to do all copy editing, but I'm quite glad to have the opportunity to write again.

After work, I had dinner and watched some television. Then, it was time to celebrate the new year in New York! They showed the ball drop live in Times Square on CNN, so we counted down as if it was the new year. We also drank sparkling apple cider.

Soon after it was 2004 on the East Coast, my friend called, and we all headed to Los Osos to meet up with some other friends. We got a bunch of firewood and drove to Grover Beach, where we rang in the new year with a bonfire on the beach.

It was quite fun. We each had our own bottle of sparkling apple cider to drink (no alcohol, of course), and we kept warm by the fire. It was a beautiful evening, with the stars visible and the air calm, not freezing and windy, like it often becomes on the beach.

We counted down to midnight with our official cell phone times, and exclaimed the arrival of 2004 with loud cheers. All around us, we could see fireworks. Our location on the beach allowed great views of the surrounding cities, so everywhere we turned, we could see fireworks being set off in Pismo Beach in the north and Santa Maria in the south, as well as in Arroyo Grande and the Five Cities area.

It was so neat to see fireworks this evening. Each year before, I had stayed in Morro Bay, where nobody sets off fireworks and half the population of senior citizens is asleep before midnight on December 31. It was a nice surprise on the beach to see such celebrations everywhere.

We stayed at the bonfire until it was nearly out, and after that, those of us who weren't leaving to go to sleep went to my friend's house in Los Osos, where we chatted into the night. It got so late that we were hungry, so those of us who still hadn't gone to sleep went to Morro Bay in search of food. At my friend's house, we enjoyed snacks and chatted even more until the sky started to become bright again - the first dawn of 2004. I finally went to sleep at about 8 a.m.

Quote of the Day: "My bladder isn't connected to my brain!"

:: SL 8:58 PM [+] ::
:: Tuesday, December 30, 2003 ::
Today, I went to work. I did some copy editing for the features desk, and it was a really busy day, so I did a lot of work during my eight-hour shift. I was looking at the computer screen for so long that my eyes began to feel tired afterwards.

I wrote a lot of headlines and sub-heads, and I also trimmed the stories to make them fit in the appropriate spaces, which was a difficult task because you can't just randomly cut stories - the story still has to make sense.

Tonight, I studied my Chinese and watched a little bit of a video tape of the musical Cats. I'm not sure what the appeal of that musical is. It ran for such a long time on Broadway, but it doesn't seem to have a plot. It's just a bunch of anthropomorphic cats prancing about on stage and singing about how they each have a different, bizarre name. Plus, I don't like cats in the first place.

Quote of the Day: "We've got a party of a lot; could you set the tables?"

:: SL 7:18 PM [+] ::
:: Monday, December 29, 2003 ::
Today, I went to work at The Tribune newspaper. It was nice to see my coworkers again. A few of them had left the paper, but many were still there. In the morning, I went to a meeting to discuss follow-ups and coverage of last week's earthquake. I was then assigned to write a story about retrofitting regulations in various cities in light of the earthquake. However, after calling half the people I needed to for my story, I was told that I was needed for copy editing, so my story was picked up by other reporters, and I went to copy edit for the features department. Apparently, the old features copy editor had left to go to another newspaper, so they were in the process of hiring a new copy editor.

I copy edited for the rest of my shift. Then, I found out that Rent, the hit Broadway musical, was in SLO-town for today and just today! I actually knew it was coming to town over the summer, but I didn't realize that it would be here when I was home, so I didn't get tickets. Unfortunately, I found out that tonight's show had been sold out for quite some time. However, I found out that they were doing for this performance the neat thing they do at the Broadway show, which is to sell 20 front-row tickets two hours before the show for only $20! I was excited by the prospect of getting tickets, so I called my sister, and as soon as my shift ended, we drove to the Performing Arts Center at the other end of town to wait in line for tickets. I figured that since it was pouring rain, fewer people would be in line. Unfortunately, there were people who had camped out by the ticket booth since last night, so I was probably the 40th person in line. So after the 20 $20 tickets were sold, we waited to try to get tickets from people who had cancelled their tickets and were not going to see the performance that night. I saw some of my friends in line, too, and we chatted.

We ended up waiting for three hours under this little covering from the rain, freezing and shivering. After a while, the lady in the box office came out and said that there were absolutely no tickets left to sell. But I wanted to see this show, so I wouldn't give up. I felt really bad for doing it, but I went around asking people if they had extra tickets. Apparently, there were a lot of people with extra tickets. Some girls who were waiting behind us in the ticket line were able to get two tickets for free. Finally, my sister and I were able to find people with extra tickets to sell, and they were nice enough to sell them to us at the ticket's price. Too bad the seats weren't together. My sister was in the orchestra, and I was in the balcony. The seat wasn't too bad. I had an unobstructed view of the stage. At intermission, my sister noted that practically an entire row of seats was empty, so we sat together in the orchestra for the second act. It was much better from there. Before and after the show, I saw a bunch of old classmates and acquaintances.

Rent was simply incredible. I have the "Best of Rent" CD, so I knew some of the songs, but seeing it performed onstage was just beautiful. The musical had some important messages, such as the need to live for today because life is short, appreciating friends, and understanding the importance of love. It was such an emotional experience; the story could coax some feeling out of the most hardened heart. The performers were incredible, also. I would gladly see the show again.

It was a pretty big deal that Rent was performed here. We never get big-name shows here in the first place, and Broadway tours rarely make one-performance stops because of the time it takes to set up and take down the sets. In addition, Monday is usually the day off for the performers. It was so great that Rent came to town.

After the show, I went with my sister and her friend to Denny's to eat, since we didn't have dinner yet. I got a turkey/bacon/tomato sandwich, but they didn't give me a little piece of lettuce, like I had requested. We conversed, and then we went home.

Quote of the Day: "It stunk, so I told my children to stick their fingers in it."

:: SL 7:15 PM [+] ::
:: Sunday, December 28, 2003 ::
Today, I had resigned myself to a day of studying. My friends were getting together to hang out, but I wasn't able to get transportation. However, in the middle of the afternoon, my friends "sneak-attacked" me at my house, and they swept me away on a day of fun. It was so kind of them to do so. We went to my friends house and played Dance Dance Revolution. It was most enjoyable. They even had a Kylie song - Love at First Sight!

After my friend went to her house to change, we went to Sylvester's for dinner. I had a great hamburger from the place. I miss the old days of Sylvester's and a Los Osos walk with friends. We then headed to SLO-town, where I got a Jamba Juice with my new Jamba Card (yay!). We then visited Barnes and Noble.

At 7, we met up with another friend and went to see the new remake of Peter Pan. It was such a magical movie. Seeing it in live action made it seem more magical than the animated Disney movie. It could have very well been a Disney film, however, because of how wondrous it was. It made me want to fly and never grow up. I tried to notice the subtle psychology behind the tale, and it was most fascinating.

After the movie, we "sneak-attacked" (my friends have recently come upon this new obsession) one of our friends, who is a bit unwell. We chatted at his house and had a good time. When I got home, I studied some more and went to bed early because I have to work tomorrow morning.

Quote of the Day: "Female strip clubs are demeaning for women, and male strip clubs are demeaning for... women."

:: SL 3:58 PM [+] ::
:: Saturday, December 27, 2003 ::
Today, I spent the afternoon studying Chinese. I also took some breaks, playing a video game and walking out to the street market that they have in Morro Bay on Saturdays. I also started reading Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. I then listened to the soundtrack of the musical Les Miserables; the songs are starting to grow on me.

This evening, I went to visit a couple of friends in SLO-town to catch up on how we spent our Christmas weeks. I stopped by when they were playing pool at the SLO Brewing Co., and my friend and I went to Starbucks, where my friend got coffee. Then, we headed to Barnes and Noble where we walked about chatting. Then, some more friends stopped by, and we clogged up an aisle in the bookstore and chatted.

Tonight, I studied some more Chinese and watched an episode of Saturday Night Live, a show I haven't watched in ages.

Quote of the Day: "I'm a woman; don't hump me!"

:: SL 11:15 PM [+] ::
:: Friday, December 26, 2003 ::
It's Friday, and that means it's time for the disturbing Shockwave animation of the week!!!

There are so many disturbing Shockwave animations out there, but this one really puts the "shock" in Shockwave...

It's Orange Ted!

:: SL 11:59 PM [+] ::
Wow, the sun was actually shining today. It was actually kind of warm when I walked out this morning. However, the wind started to blow, and it became cold – almost as cold as a regular day in Boston during the wintertime. It was cold all day and all night. I wish the weather was California warm again.

Today, we had visitors. My father's old college friend and his family stopped by for lunch. My father's friend had a son who is a senior at UCSD and a daughter who is four years older and is now a teacher in Garden Grove. We drove down to the waterfront because they wanted to get some clam chowder. They also saw and decided to get fried salmon and chips (fries). This was in addition to an extravagant gourmet lunch my mother cooked. She also spent last night and this morning cleaning up the house; it wasn't messy to begin with, but my parents wanted to be sure it was perfect for the guests.

During our late lunch, my sister and I started watching Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark on DVD (part of the set she received yesterday for Christmas). It was great; I loved the escape scene with the giant rolling boulder at the beginning, as well as the ingenious staff and pedant concept that Indy uses to discover the location of the Well of Souls. I love the Indiana Jones movies. They are such a wonderful adventure!

After the movie, I went with my sister to the public library, where I saw the mother of one of my old friends. We conversed for a bit, and I browsed some of the items available at the library. I found the original cast recording of The Lion King, the Broadway musical. We then went to Rite-Aid, where I looked at Christmas lights, but they didn't have the all-blue lights set I was looking for, so we left.

Tonight, I couldn't go to SLO-town to meet up with my friend because I can't drive myself due to a lack of car insurance and everyone else was busy, so I took the bus. The fare wasn't bad at all, and I felt good for helping the environment by taking public transportation. However, for the entire trip, I was the only passenger. The bus driver still stopped at every stop, and nobody got on for the entire 45-minute trip. I guess nobody really goes out the day after Christmas. So, as good as I felt about helping the environment by taking the bus, it was probably even worse because buses use a lot more fuel – at least a lot more than a regular passenger car. But then again, the bus would have had to go through the whole route anyway, whether it had a passenger or not, so taking another car really would have polluted more. Oh dear. I should stop the overanalyzing.

My friend and I went about downtown SLO-town, shopping at a couple of stores. I got a used Daniel Bedingfield CD from Boo Boo's Records, as well as a Disney daily calendar for my sister. We went back to my friend's house, where her family celebrated the last day of Hanukah. There was a wonderful dinner, and they lit candles and sang songs, opening presents afterwards. It was a delightful occasion. My friend and I had dessert – chocolate ice cream and this tasty marzipan bread – and we chatted while listening to Carmina Burana (the opera you often hear during dramatic moments in movies or TV), as well as this interesting music you would likely hear in a lounge. After chatting some more, my friend kindly drove me home, and I spent some time playing video games, using the computer, and studying Chinese.

Quote of the Day: "I got a vase; why do I always end up with vaginal presents?"

:: SL 11:58 PM [+] ::
:: Thursday, December 25, 2003 ::
Merry Christmas!

Today, I got up early to watch Walt Disney World's Christmas parade, which was being televised on ABC this morning. Unfortunately, something went wrong with the channel, and the screen was all gray and fuzzy, even though all the other channels were just fine. I watched Sharon Osbourne's talk show for the first time instead. Her guest today was some random guy and Dame Edna from Australia! It was a rather amusing program. Later, ABC cleared up, and I started watching the Disney parade. However, my father announced that we were going on a trip, so the whole family packed into the car and headed off for a trip.

We ended up driving along Highway 1 up to Cambria, where we saw the beach, and promptly drove back, stopping at the Morro Bay beach to look at the waves as they crashed angrily in the continuously stormy weather. After our little excursion, we had a small lunch. I started playing Super Mario Brothers 2: Yoshi's Island, and then I proceeded to watch more television. My sister started watching My Fair Lady, and I watched a little of it. I then started making my traditional double-layer pumpkin pie, which has a cool cheesecake-style layer and a spiced-up pumpkin layer.

After studying some Chinese, I watched a Disneyland television special that aired on The Travel Channel a couple of months ago but didn't have a chance to see until now. We had a wonderful turkey dinner, with lots of delicious side dishes. The gravy was most excellent, too. Ooh, and we had sparkling apple cider, too. Yay! For dessert, we had the double-layer pumpkin pie I made earlier in the day. Later, we ate carrot cake and opened presents. I got a really cool Disney Treasures DVD set, and my sister got the Indiana Jones DVD set. We then watched a little of Finding Nemo.

Quote of the Day: "And then there was that time the squirrels crapped all over the nativity scene."

:: SL 1:11 PM [+] ::
:: Wednesday, December 24, 2003 ::
This Washington Post review of the upcoming live-action Peter Pan film takes a fascinating look at the psychology behind J.M. Barrie's classic.

:: SL 10:53 PM [+] ::
It's Christmas Eve!!!

Today, I slept in after staying up pretty late studying the night before. The abusive family that lives on the first floor of my grandparents' house was being particularly noisy again this morning, making it rather difficult for me to sleep. The television was blaring, and an angry male voice yelled (presumably to his children), "Get out of my [expletive deleted] house!" How delightful.

This afternoon, I spent an excessive amount of time watching television. I watched snippets of Disney's The Hunchback of Notre Dame and E.T., in addition to the cartoon version of Dr. Seuss' How The Grinch Stole Christmas. It's nice how the channels are playing so many family-friendly films during this week. While watching TV, I studied my Chinese. I have completed reviewing approximately a fourth of what I need to know for the final.

Tonight, I was in a rush when my sister and I were heading out to get a recipe ingredient, so I grabbed and wore my sister's black sweatshirt, which she got after volunteering at the CIT wrestling tournament last year. Even though I was out for just minutes, I had two people ask me if I wrestled. I answered with what I thought was a clever repartee: "No, but my sister does."

I studied some more Chinese, and my sister and I later watched Mickey's Christmas Carol, which we watch every Christmas Eve. I love the song in that cartoon, and it's so touching when Tiny Tim says, "God bless us, every one!" Charles Dickens' classic really does reaffirm the importance of kindness and charity.

Quote of the Day: "That was rude; I never walked out when [he] wouldn't shut up."

:: SL 10:04 PM [+] ::
:: Tuesday, December 23, 2003 ::
Greetings from the student union of Cal Poly! Interestingly, the other computer here won't let me access blogger.com because the website has "forbidden content," which is absolutely ridiculous. Luckily, this computer will let me post on my blog.

Today, I got up early (after being awakened by a pretty strong aftershock from yesterday's huge earthquake) and went with a friend to Los Osos, where we met up with a bunch of friends for a Christmas get-together at the Los Osos Starbucks. I enjoyed the cookies my friend baked, since I didn't have anything for breakfast and didn't want to get anything from Starbucks. The "Santa's whiskers" cookies, which had sprinkles of coconut flakes and chunks of cherries, were especially delicious.

After general joking and conversing, we decided to head into SLO-town to play Dance Dance Revolution at Cal Poly's student union. 'Twas much fun. Unfortunately, the arcade was closing early, so we all headed downtown, where the streets were crowded with last-minute shoppers. Traffic was really bad.

We walked about downtown SLO-town, ran some errands, and went into random stores for some shopping. After looking at a lot of random fun things, we stopped at Pizza Solo for Solo Stix! Yay! They are most tasty. My friend had to leave early because she's going to visit her boyfriend up north, but we stayed and finished our snack/lunch.

When I got home, I resumed reviewing Chinese characters. This evening, my sister started watching the film Mary Poppins, and that was nice to see again. We had wonderful fruit tonight: guavas and kiwis. It's so nice to have real fruit again.

Apparently, Arnold Schwarzenegger was in Paso Robles today. It's still weird to me that he's the governor. I still see him as a mere film actor, not as governor.

Quote of the Day: "This is my baby's first Christmas, and you're building a gingerbread whorehouse?!?!"

:: SL 6:59 AM [+] ::
:: Monday, December 22, 2003 ::
Today, I experienced one of the most terrifying moments of my life. A 6.5 magnitude earthquake centered around San Simeon, about 30 minutes from Morro Bay, hit the Central Coast this morning. I was at my grandparents' house, on the second level, and all of a sudden, it hit. I had no idea what was going on, but I was being jostled around. It was frightening. The ground was shaking so hard, and things were crashing everywhere. The rumbling and crashing sounds were deafening.

I have never experienced an earthquake like this. My father says that in the 20 years that he has been here, there has not been an earthquake this strong. The epicenter was so close to our area, and we really felt it. In the house following the earthquake, light fixtures were swaying, and books, plants, collectibles, etc. had fallen from bookshelves. Some valuables were broken. My cell phone isn't working right now.

National network news channels are covering this breaking story. Finally, people are learning about our area! Pity that it is in such a negative light.

This afternoon, my friend and I went to hang out at the house of another friend, who is away on vacation. We watched some television, fed the pets, and just hung out. Another friend joined us later on, and we headed to San Luis Obispo, where we had dinner at Cabo San Luis, a Mexican restaurant. The chicken burrito I ordered was pretty good. I think I went overboard with the salsa from the salsa bar, though. It was a bit spicy. We then stopped by downtown SLO-town to hang out. We went to Starbucks, and while my friends got drinks, I got a Cranberry Bliss bar, which was pretty good. I enjoyed the sweet cream cheese frosting on top, as well as the chunks of white chocolate.

We read random books at Barnes and Noble, and we ran into a brother of one of our friends. We drove him back to his home in Los Osos and stayed to visit our friend and her baby. It was the first time I saw my friend's baby, and he looks to be a sweet one. We enjoyed quesadillas, and we started making a gingerbread house from a kit. It was so much fun. We read the instructions and made the frosting and built the gingerbread house and decorated it with tons of candy. I strove for perfection with my decorations, and it turned out quite beautifully, if I may say so myself. We shared much conversation and laughter. 'Twas one of the best times I've had in a long while.

We stayed pretty late into the night, and my friend graciously drove me back to Morro Bay. Alas, this whole not having car insurance thing is driving me nuts. If only I had known it would cause such a hassle. I used the computer for some time and then went to bed.

The earthquake was the talk of the day. It was huge, and two people died as a result of it. Paso Robles got the worst damage, with the historic clock tower building destroyed. Images of the Pan Jewelers storefront were flashed around the world. It was even shown on Taiwanese news, which my parents were watching. We've had aftershocks running throughout the day, and they are felt well. I'll never forget the frightening experience of today's earthquake.

Quote of the Day: "Guy should be like Kleenex; soft, strong, and disposable."

:: SL 12:05 PM [+] ::
:: Sunday, December 21, 2003 ::
Sorry for the delay... the Saturday update and the Super Saturday Feature are both up now.

:: SL 9:39 PM [+] ::
"It's the saddest holiday ever. It's an unwelcome time for me; very unwelcome." -Martha Stewart.

Poor Martha!!!

:: SL 5:40 PM [+] ::
Today, I wasted time by playing video games on my old Super Nintendo game set. The game was Super Mario Brothers 2: Yoshi's Island. I very much enjoy playing this adventure game. I then studied some of my Chinese. After watching some network news channels freak out about the latest terror alert, I watched a show on E! television about the "Oops!" moments of celebrities.

I then went to see my sister's piano recital at a church in Los Osos. It was about an hour long, and it featured many different holiday carols performed by students of all levels. After that, my sister went to Starbucks because she wanted a drink, and then we went to Ralph's supermarket to get some ice cream. I got this new strawberry cheesecake flavor.

After watching some more television, I hopped on the computer and chatted with some friends. My sister then drove me to San Luis Obispo, where I went to visit some old friends from the summertime for a movie night. We watched this French film with subtitles. I didn't get to finish the movie, though, because my sister wanted to go home. At least I got to see some old friends.

Quote of the Day: "Will you be my mistress?"

:: SL 5:38 PM [+] ::
:: Saturday, December 20, 2003 ::
It's time for the Super Saturday Feature, where we put the pedantry in Pedantic Platitudes!

This week's sentence:

The wince-inducing facade of exquisite intumescence resulted from the quotidian binge-eating sessions, tempered by a resolute repudiation of corporeal kinetics.

Translation: Time for a diet!

:: SL 9:38 PM [+] ::
Alas. It has rained the past two days. Such dreary weather.

Today, I was supposed to go with my sister to a Key Club DCM hosted here in Morro Bay, but it was abruptly cancelled, so I stayed home and played video games. My sister wanted to go shopping in Santa Maria, so we got into the car and drove there. Although I just went yesterday, my sister had stayed home to watch the family business; today was her turn to go out. We went to the mall, and I got a present for my mother at Mervyn's.

We then got dinner to go at a Chinese restaurant and headed home. We stopped at the Madonna Shopping Center in San Luis Obispo, and then we went downtown, where I got a present for my father at Barnes and Noble. We also stopped at Jamba Juice, where I got a Strawberry Tsunami smoothie. Finally, we got home, and I played a video game, used the computer, made a new CD featuring holiday music from Disneyland park, and studied my Chinese.

Quote of the Day: "GODcha!"

:: SL 5:22 PM [+] ::
:: Friday, December 19, 2003 ::
It's Friday! That means it's time for the disturbing Shockwave animation of the week!

You've heard about it; now here's your chance to see it for yourself! Lobster Magnet!!!

:: SL 2:08 PM [+] ::
Today, I went to an orthodontist appointment in Arroyo Grande. My orthodontist needed to see me again after yesterday's appointment because he wanted to fit a new retainer. I normally go to the San Luis Obispo office, but he was at his Arroyo Grande office today. We first went to the San Luis Obispo office to pick up the new retainer from the work lab, and then I took that to the Arroyo Grande office to be fitted.

After my appointment, my parents and I went to Santa Maria, where we went shopping at Costco. I saw a bunch of stuff I wanted, and I ended up getting the new Indiana Jones trilogy DVD set. There was a rebate, so it ended up costing just a little over $30. What a great deal. I also sampled a bunch of different foods from the little tables set up to showcase various food items at the warehouse.

We then headed to the mall in Santa Maria. We got a bunch of See's chocolates to go and shopped at various stores. I didn't buy anything because I didn't see anything I liked. Finally, we went to a Chinese food buffet; the food was pretty good, and there was a huge selection available. I especially liked their honey chicken. They also had a great selection of fresh fruit. It was so wonderful to have fresh watermelon and honeydew again!!!

When I got home, I used the computer for a little bit of time and then proceeded to watch The Lion King: Special Edition on DVD. My sister purchased it earlier this year. I watched the new scene, entitled "The Morning Report," and I was pretty disappointed. The song wasn't memorable, and the animation was really bad. The song just didn't fit into the movie. However, I'm sure it fits into the plot better in the Broadway musical, for which this song was written.

Quote of the Day: "I'm doing alright; would you like fries with that?"

:: SL 2:06 PM [+] ::
:: Thursday, December 18, 2003 ::
Greetings from California!!! It's nice to be back. Today, I slept in because I was so tired. Then, I got up and went to the high school, where I watched my sister conduct a Key Club meeting during the school's lunchtime. Then, I stayed for the journalism class, where my former journalism advisor asked me to give a short presentation about newspaper and journalism style. I then went and visited some of my old teachers in high school.

After visiting the high school, I went with my sister to the middle school, where she is a math tutor. She wanted me to go with her to help her with her job. Unfortunately, I had an orthodontist appointment at 4 p.m., so my mother and I went to SLO-town. I went to my appointment, which only took about fifteen minutes. Ironically, I actually spent more time waiting to be seen by the doctor than being seen. Following my appointment, I went to visit my grandmother's English teacher, who recently had a heart attack and is now recovering in a nursing home. She looked really healthy, and she is very lucky to have survived her health ordeal.

Tonight, I went to FARMERS MARKET!!! There, I met up with some friends, and we had dinner at Mo's Steakhouse. I enjoyed a tri-tip sandwich, which apparently originated from and is only available on the Central Coast.

After spending some time on the internet at the Two Dogs Café, my friend and I walked down the promenade by Pizza Solo, where we ran into a couple of our friends. After putting something away at the parking garage, we returned to converse with them. We talked until we met up with a couple more friends at Starbucks. We chatted for quite some time in the coffee shop, and it was a most enjoyable time. I also got a Jamba Juice! Yay! I got a Mango-a-Go-Go. I enjoyed catching up with many of my old friends. We finally headed over to the theater to get in line early for the 10 p.m. showing of Lord of the Rings: Return of the King.

We finally got into the theater and got nice seats all together. We made fun of the advertisement slide show prior to the movie and enjoyed the trailers for upcoming movies. There was also a preview for next year's Spider-man 2. The final installment of the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy was enjoyable. It dragged a bit near the beginning, but things started getting suspenseful. The conclusion was satisfying, if not a bit drawn out. At times I felt I was watching the same movie for the third time, but the imagery was spectacular. I really liked the "girl power" scene; it was a nice change of pace from an otherwise male-dominated film.

Quote of the Day: "Guys love buildings; if you want to get a guy's attention, be a building!"

:: SL 6:45 PM [+] ::
:: Wednesday, December 17, 2003 ::
At nearly, 5 a.m., I finished all my packing and left Leverett House and carried my ponderous luggage to the T, where I headed to the Boston Logan International Airport. I had over packed, and it was such a pain to carry everything. It was so incredibly busy at the airport; I have never seen so many people packed into that airport. The line to check in stretched all the way down the hall, and had I waited in the line, I probably would have had to wait a couple of hours. However, I used the self-service check-in machine, so I didn’t have to wait in the long line. At the airport, I ran into my roommate, whose flight left later than mine.

Unfortunately, I did have to wait in the line for security. That was an even longer line. They tried to accommodate those persons whose flights were leaving soon by pulling them out of the main line into a shorter line, but even in that line it was 7:10 when I got through the security. I thought for sure that I was going to miss my flight. I ran to the gate, and luckily the airplane had not left. In fact, the flight was delayed because so many passengers were unable to get through security in time because of all the people.

I tried to sleep for most of the flight. The in-flight movie was Finding Nemo. Unfortunately, an obnoxious child was sitting across the aisle, and he would not stop chattering loudly, so I kept waking up at moments. I seem to have such bad luck.

I arrived at LAX (yay California!), and then I got on a smaller plane to San Luis Obispo. I arrived in Morro Bay at about 2 in the afternoon. Ah yes, it's good to be home. I took a shower, and then chatted with my dad's aunt and uncle, who were visiting from Santa Barbara, and then with my sister, who had just gotten home from school.

Tonight, we went to dinner at Tahoe Joe's. I love their cheesecake! Although it wasn't as good tonight as it was before, it's still some of the best cheesecake anywhere. At home, I watched some television and rested. I then typed up some notes for my presentation tomorrow and then went to bed early because I've got a big day tomorrow.

Quote of the Day: "I believe in gosh, so I won't go to heck."

:: SL 9:21 PM [+] ::
:: Tuesday, December 16, 2003 ::
I don't have anything against the third Lord of the Rings film; if anything, I'd like to see it succeed. However, many of the critics write in such an amusingly sardonic manner that I can't help but to share...

From another not-so-kind review of the upcoming Lord of the Rings film:

"Why is hero Frodo (Elijah Wood) often so wan and floppy, as if in need of smelling salts? Why is he so slow to notice that creepy mini-nudist Gollum is no friend? And his pal Sam (Sean Astin) calling him "Mr. Frodo" starts to seem like a joke."

:: SL 10:08 AM [+] ::
Today, I got up early one last time for the final meeting of my cognitive psychology class. We wrapped things up and had a mini-review in class. Following class, I went back to my room to write an essay I needed to apply for my major. I finished writing my essay, and rushed to Chinese class, where we enjoyed chocolate during our final class meeting.

As soon as Chinese class concluded, I rushed over to the undergraduate office of the psychology department to get a signature and to submit my completed application. I then went to the Loker Grill to get a hamburger because I had not had lunch yet. After my "lunch," I quickly went back to my room to take a nap because I needed the sleep.

However, I had not been asleep for more than 20 minutes when my roommate woke me up and informed me that everyone was going to dinner, so I got up and went to dinner with everyone who was still here on Tuesday night. The Leverett dining hall was closed for vacation, so we went next door to Winthrop House, where we had dinner.

Following dinner, I went to a meeting with my former academic advisor from freshman year and another advisee of hers. We met at the Starbucks in The Garage, but I didn't get anything because I don't like coffee and I just had dinner. We chatted for a while. I then went to Newbury Comics, where I browsed CDs. I found in the used CDs section a copy of the soundtrack from Disney's The Little Mermaid from its original release. I collect Disney soundtracks, and that was quite a find.

Tonight, besides hanging out with my friends, I cleaned up my room for vacation. I also packed my bags for my trip home and did some laundry. I was hungry, so at one point I went out for some pizza. I had anticipated staying up all night because I had to leave so early in the morning, so I entertained myself by doing odd jobs and listening to music. I'll be home in less than 12 hours!

Quote of the Day: "Sorry, I'm just feeling your testicles."

:: SL 9:45 AM [+] ::
:: Monday, December 15, 2003 ::
Today, I had classes until 6 p.m. I managed to pay attention, even though it's almost vacation! After my last class, I hurried to the Institute of Politics at the Kennedy School of Government, where I saw the last installment of the Hardball Battle for the White House series with Chris Matthews. Senator Joseph Lieberman, who was Al Gore's running mate in the 2000 election, was the guest. He's running for president for 2004 as a Democrat, and he's a centrist, whose views border on Republican. He finally decided to come on the show this Monday to conclude the series. I got really lucky this time and got a really good seat right in front, so I saw everything really well.

It was a good time to hear him speak; he was just coming off missing former running mate Al Gore's endorsement and the capture of Saddam Hussein. Lieberman supports the war greatly, so in many ways his views on foreign policy mirror that of Bush's. I was surprised that he was running as a Democrat; so much of what he said seemed as if it would come out of the mouth of Bush. Chris Matthews, at one point, called him on this; Matthews asked, "If Howard Dean was the Democratic candidate for president and Bush was the Republican candidate, who would you vote for?" Lieberman did say, however, that he would support whoever was the Democratic nominee – hopefully himself. Lieberman was a good speaker, though; he had some good lines – when a clip of the grizzled Saddam Hussein getting an oral inspection played on a screen, he quipped, "Look, he's getting better health care than some Americans!"

Tonight, I went with my friends to see the movie The Last Samurai. It was the most amazing movie I've seen in a long time. I highly recommend that everyone go see this incredibly moving film. The story was so endearing, and the samurai themes of honor and loyalty – a fight until the bitter end – explored in the story are quite praiseworthy. The Last Samurai was a great look at the Japanese culture, which has always fascinated me. The visuals were remarkably stunning, also. I was impressed by the simple beauty that the movie depicted. We all walked out of the theater in awe by the breathtaking work of art. Again, I urge everyone to go see this epic film.

Quote of the Day: "She likes skinny white boys with no muscles who complain and sing about how depressed they are."

:: SL 6:01 PM [+] ::
:: Sunday, December 14, 2003 ::
I found this video to be rather amusing.

:: SL 7:06 PM [+] ::
Today, I wrapped up some Chinese homework for the end of the semester and then did reading for my psychology tutorial. I then finished writing my response paper on that reading.

It started snowing really heavily again today. Basically, chunks of snow were falling from the sky. It piled up on the ground pretty quickly.

Tonight, I went to Memorial Church in the middle of Harvard Yard for a Christmas carol service. This was the first time I had been inside Memorial Church, and I found a marvelous sight inside. It was all decked out in poinsettias and glowing candles, and I really felt the holiday atmosphere.

The choir and orchestra started to perform traditional carols, some more obscure and religious ones, too, and there was a magical feeling in the church, especially when the audience members, as instructed, began singing along with the choir. Add the snow falling visibly through the windows, and you have a true holiday celebration.

I then met up and had dinner with a good friend of mine whom I haven't seen in quite some time. We talked and laughed and shared wild gossipy tales. We then headed over to Mather House to have ice cream, since Leverett wasn't serving any today in its dining hall. It was rather fun enjoying my cake cone of vanilla ice cream outside while the snow was falling heavily on me and my ice cream cone.

Tonight, my friend and I went to Adams House to watch the premier episode of Ivory Tower, "Harvard's own soap opera." It was rather amusing because it featured characters based on various Harvard stereotypes (the nerd, the jock, the bitchy girl, etc.).

A lot of my friends then converged for a holiday get-together and tea party! It was so much fun; we exchanged gifts, ate snacks, and drank tea. We laughed and joked in the festive manner endemic to holiday parties. 'Twas fun to the max.

Quote of the Day: "I enjoy riding the elevators in the nude; it's such a rush."

:: SL 6:48 PM [+] ::
:: Saturday, December 13, 2003 ::
Welcome to the Super Saturday Feature, where we put the pedantic in Pedantic Platitudes!

This week's pedantic sentence: He competently endured the intellectual gravity of the portentous rendezvous, deftly fielding the bombardment of pointed inquiries and tendering prompt rejoinders.

Translation: He responded.

:: SL 10:45 AM [+] ::
Today, I slept in way late. I did manage to catch lunch, however. I then spent much of my afternoon trying to clean up my room in time for vacation. This evening, I spent some time with my friends, and then we went to dinner.

Tonight, a bunch of us went to see a production of Gilbert & Sullivan's The Gondoliers, a hilarious operetta/musical comedy. Because it was closing night, there were quite a few random jokes not originally scripted. I enjoyed myself thoroughly, and the music, provided by an orchestra that included two of my good friends, was catchy and bright.

Quote of the Day: "Look, bitch... I don't know you, so... I'm gonna try and keep this cordial."

:: SL 7:03 AM [+] ::
:: Friday, December 12, 2003 ::
It's Friday, and you know what that means! It's time for the disturbing Shockwave animation of the week!

So last week we featured the mind-numbing and basically all-around frightening Badger (Yes, indeed I've got it stuck in my head... Badger! Badger! Badger! Badger! Badger! Badger! Mushroom! Mushroom! Snake... oh wretched snake!), and we're back again this week with a new one!

This week's bad Shockwave animation is Donkey... another one featuring an animal... and you thought the badger one was bad...

:: SL 9:15 PM [+] ::
Hobbit sexuality?

Reviews are out for next week's Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, which is supposed to be an Oscar-worthy finale to an epic trilogy. Some reviews, like this one, haven't been so kind. I found amusing and disturbing (both at the same time!) the following from the review:

"Oddly, though there are a couple of misty love scenes, and one bruising kiss, there is something peculiarly homoerotic in Jackson’s trilogy. Some of this can be put down to good old-fashioned fellowship between the pretty boys, but the relationship between the Hobbits, particularly fat Sam and saucer-eyed Frodo, is played like a teenage crush. "I can’t carry it for you," says fireman Sam to Frodo. "But I can carry you."

The Hobbits are the most adolescent of the creatures, and hence the most vulnerable, but Frodo finds himself on a relentless journey towards maturity, which takes him away from his true love. Near the end, when he goes to Another Place, Frodo observes: "Dear Sam, you need not always be torn in two." In the next scene, Sam is seen behaving in a ruggedly heterosexual manner. "

:: SL 6:44 PM [+] ::
Today, I went to the final section for Science B-29. We enjoyed baked goods, chocolate, and apple cider. I then had lunch with my friends Alex, Alex, and Alex, and then I headed to Science B-29 lecture. It was a nice final formal lecture. Next Monday will be a review section.

Following Chinese, I made a phone call to clear up some issues regarding my newspaper assignment next year. I’m so excited about going to Miami this coming summer! Then, I went to the Leverett library to finish a reading a psychology study. After falling asleep in the comfy chair at the library, I caught the tail end of dinner, where I saw a lot of my friends, and we played telephone.

Tonight, I worked on my paper for my sophomore tutorial. The paper was an analysis of this fascinating psychology study on the linguistic development of Korean children who had been adopted into French families. The children learned French, became completely fluent in the language, and forgot all the Korean they ever knew. The study put these individuals in an fMRI, and scans of their brain activity while listening to sentences spoken in French and Korean were analyzed. The results showed that the adopted subjects showed no more activation in the brain when listening to Korean than the control group of native French speakers, even though the experimental group had learned Korean early in their lives. This was more evidence of the brain’s remarkable plasticity.

I took a study break to hang out with my friends, and we went to the Quincy Grille, where it was quite busy tonight, and ordered food and conversed and laughed and had a great time. I decided I felt like eating pizza, so I went to Tommy’s to get a slice. Afterwards, I returned to my room to finish writing my paper, and the sun was out before I finally went to bed.

Quote of the Day: "With a fatal crack overdose comes great responsibility."

:: SL 6:44 PM [+] ::
:: Thursday, December 11, 2003 ::
Time for some more gratuitous song lyrics!!!

I wish that I could be eleven again
That E.T. was my friend
You know that life was so simple then
Times have changed
Never be the same
The memory remains
And the melody's inside my heart

Got a little crush
Ooh, I just can't get enough of that stuff
It's such a rush, oh whoa whoa whoa, 1980 me
Got a little crush
Ooh, I just can't get enough of that stuff
It's such a rush, oh whoa whoa, 1980 me

From the most poptastic song I've heard in a long while: "Crush (1980 Me)" by Darren Hayes.

:: SL 8:22 AM [+] ::
This morning, I got up early to go to my cognitive psychology class. It was fairly interesting material about numeric cognition. I then went to section for my Justice class and Chinese, where I was the only person there for about ten minutes until three other classmates showed up. It was a really wet day; the rain was falling so heavily that I got soaked walking back to my dorm.

At lunchtime, I enjoyed my meal with a good friend of mine who is writing her own romance novel, so we shared humorous ideas. Meanwhile, the "Roving Reporter" from The Harvard Crimson showed up, and she asked us a question and took our picture. I wonder if I'll be in the publication tomorrow.

Today, I started working on my paper for my sophomore tutorial in psychology. I read a study and prepared to write an analysis of it. In the late afternoon, I headed over to Radcliffe Yard, where I went to hear Eve Ensler speak. Eve Ensler is the award-winning playwright and author of The Vagina Monologues, a groundbreaking work famous around the world. She is such an incredibly talented woman. Her speech began with some stories about her experiences writing The Vagina Monologues and what has happened to her since it became a huge hit. She then told heartwrenching stories about women who had been severely mistreated and oppressed in various cultures. Her language concerning the severe mistreatment of women worldwide was so descriptively detailed and delivered so emotionally that the audience was captivated and moved to action.

Eve Ensler also performed two new monologues she had written for a new production. They were powerful and moving. She compared the problems concerning the ozone layer with the problems women face. Damage to the ozone layer can have disastrous effects on humanity's existence, and violence against women, she said, can have the same effects. Eve Ensler is an incredible speaker, and she delivers her words with such passion and feeling. I thoroughly enjoyed her speech and was enlightened to the plight of women.

Following her speech, there was a reception next door with very fancy catered food. Eve Ensler was there, so I got to meet her and have her autograph my copy of The Vagina Monologues, which my friend inspired me to purchase a couple of years ago. Eve Ensler wrote, "Sam J – Bless you. May you always bless vaginas. – Eve Ensler." That, including the fact that she considered me a "vagina-friendly man," totally made my day.

In the evening, I worked some more on my paper and did some reading for my final Science B-29 section tomorrow morning.

Quote of the Day: "Jell-o… it's the best thing to come out of horses since Seabiscuit."

:: SL 7:48 AM [+] ::
:: Wednesday, December 10, 2003 ::
Everyone enjoys a little Mickey Mouse news once in a while.

:: SL 4:51 PM [+] ::
Today, I went to Justice, section for cognitive psychology, Science B-29, and Chinese. After Chinese, I did some e-mail administration and got caught up on the day's news. At 4, I went to hear MIT professor Noam Chomsky speak about Israel/Palestine issues. Noam Chomsky, described as "the greatest intellectual alive today," is a founder of modern linguistics and a major figure in the history of mind-related studies; he is also very involved in social issues and causes, and that was why he was speaking here today.

Tonight, I had the best dining hall dinner ever. The dining hall and serving area was beautifully decorated with holiday decorations, and the tables had white tablecloths and poinsettias in little pots. The meal was absolutely wonderful. There was turkey with gravy, dressing, mashed potatoes, diced squash, and a most wonderful pasta with broccoli and chicken breast. In addition, I had canned peaches, which are so sweet and juicy and smooth, and in the dining hall there was a table set up with a tea showcase, where they introduced at least five different types of tea leaves from around the world that we could spoon into teabags and steep in hot water. Finally, they had fancy chocolate cake to end the whole meal. It felt like the dining staff went all out tonight.

Dinner was made even better by the fact that I found out that my friend has a Taiwanese heritage, and so we shared memories of our trips to Taiwan and our love for the culture. It was so neat to talk to someone who understood Taiwan! Talking about our favorite Taiwanese things vicariously took me to the island nation, and now I want to visit Taiwan again! It hasn't been a year since I last went to Taiwan, but it seems like so long ago. Ah yes, and the premier of China visited Harvard today to give a speech. I didn't have a chance to go protest because it was in the morning when I had classes. Boo. China is evil. Human rights violations!!!

Tonight, I did some psychology reading. Later in the evening for a study break, I visited a couple of my friends and got snacks at Quincy House's Brain Break. I then went to bed early because of my early class tomorrow.

Quote of the Day: "You can do a lot of cool stuff when you take her pants off!"

:: SL 1:19 AM [+] ::
:: Tuesday, December 09, 2003 ::
Check out The Surrealist Compliment Generator! I've found it to be wildly amusing. Here are some favorites:

Your dashingly colored toupee twists my right boot into a state of ennui with the speed and dexterity of many lemon meringue-coated conquistadors.

If you were a camel your humps would be esoterically bald from overuse.

If I were to combine your blood, toes, and hair, it might not be you, but it would be enough for my basic desires.

You are truly a wristwatch in a world of lumps.

Send me your hang nails. With great eagerness I will knit them into divine papal integuments.

Your sweet voice is like the snap of a bra strap upon a sun burnt back.

:: SL 9:17 AM [+] ::
Wow, my writing reached a new level of craptitude today in my Justice paper.

This morning, I toiled to finish my big Justice paper, which was due this afternoon at 3 p.m. and not a second later. I managed to finish just on time and trudged through the slush to turn it in on the other side of campus. I then had a pseudo lunch that was uber-delicious because I hadn't eaten anything all day.

I then met with my TF for Chinese class, and we reviewed some new vocabulary words. I then headed off to dinner with my tutor, who was meeting with everyone to check on how they were doing so far in the year. Following dinner, I took it easy by doing light work. At 9, I went to a cheesecake study break hosted by our tutor. There were many different types of cheesecake from The Cheesecake Factory. I tried the chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake (which was kind of like chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream) and this wonderful caramel walnut cheesecake.

There, I ran into a good friend of mine, and we were going to go out and buy Pirates of the Caribbean on DVD, but we were delayed, but we still managed to have social time with a large group of people. We had a wonderful time chatting and laughing. We then headed for a random walk into Harvard Square in the evening. We stopped by the CVS convenience store and also the Au Bon Pain bakery. We returned to their dorm and chatted for a little longer.

I finally returned to my room and went across the hall, where my roommate was hosting a screening of some films he made during high school. A bunch of my friends were there, and we all snacked on sweets and watched the videos and the subsequent outtakes. I then returned to my room and worked on some Chinese homework and a response paper for some cognitive psychology reading.

Quote of the Day: "I really like colons!"

:: SL 8:28 AM [+] ::
:: Monday, December 08, 2003 ::
Alas, the snow is becoming dirty and slushy, and it is a pain to walk anywhere outside as the snow is melting. Snow is pretty when it's falling but not when it becomes slush on the ground. The ground is also slippery with ice, so one mis-step could result in wetness and potential injury.

In other news, students in colleges and universities across the country are taking final exams before heading off to winter vacation. Alas, we are in the minority because we have our finals after winter break, so we have that stress lingering over us as we try to enjoy the holiday season.

Today, I went to all my classes from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. I also met with my Justice TF to discuss my paper, which is due tomorrow. I also headed to the IOP in order to pick up my ticket for tonight's event.

Tonight, I went to the final installment (unless Joe Lieberman gets his act together) of Hardball with Chris Matthews. Today's guest was Democratic presidential candidate General Wesley Clark. I really didn't know much about General Clark before tonight, and I was wondering why he is so popular. However, he did an excellent job on tonight's show, which once again was taped live and aired on MSNBC. Chris Matthews gave him some really easy questions, and Clark took advantage of that, speaking with confidence and style. He seems as if he could do some good in the White House. He did a meet and greet following the show, and I got to shake hands with him.

When I got back, I went to a study break that had the most delicious fresh fruit ever. We don't get very much variety in fruit here in the winter, so it was so refreshing to enjoy watermelon, pineapple, grapes, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries. There was also creamy Godiva ice cream; the white chocolate with raspberry flavor was the best.

I finally settled down to write my big paper for Justice that's due tomorrow. It was a pain to start, but once I got the ball rolling, at least I could put words down on the page.

Quote of the Day: "From the people who brought you red hair ... now comes falafels, the Parthenon, and democracy!"

:: SL 5:40 PM [+] ::
:: Sunday, December 07, 2003 ::
"More recent findings indicated that short sleepers (those who typically sleep 6 or fewer hours out of every 24), as compared to long sleepers (those who sleep more than 9 hours), were more psychologically maladjusted, anxious, less creative, more neurotic, and more prone to hallucinate."

Gee, maybe I should start getting more sleep!

:: SL 8:27 PM [+] ::
Wow, it finally stopped snowing, but there is so much snow on the ground it's impossible to get anywhere! Today, I worked on my Chinese vocabulary and writing, as well as finishing my lab report for cognitive psychology. After dinner, I went to a surprise birthday party for one of my good friends. We enjoyed chocolate sweets and ice cream cake.

This evening, I went with a bunch of my friends to Finale, a fancy upscale restaurant in Harvard Square that specializes in desserts. It's been around for a while now, and everyone says great things about it; I mean, one only needs to look at the display case outside to know that the restaurant really perfects the art of making desserts. Each creation features a dazzling array of colors and textures, and garnishes grow up from the dish into majestic spires.

My friends decided to go to the restaurant because the Leverett House formal, which was supposed to be tonight, was cancelled because of the heavy snow. This was the first time I've had a dessert at Finale, and my friend and I ordered a cheesecake. The cheesecake came in a cool round shape and had a crispy chocolate garnish, a milk chocolate Finale logo nugget, a rock sugar shape, and plump, juicy cranberries to accompany the dish. It was beautiful.

This dish cost us an arm and a leg, but it was nothing compared to two of my other friends, who got a dessert that cost $30 – a plate of many different varieties of chocolate creations. Even though we only got desserts and drinks, the total came to over $80 for six people. Wow.

Tonight, I also did reading for my sophomore tutorial in psychology and then wrote a response paper based on that reading.

Quote of the Day: "As foretold by the prophecy and seen on TV...!"

:: SL 1:56 PM [+] ::
:: Saturday, December 06, 2003 ::
Welcome to the Super Saturday Feature, where we put the pedantry in Pedantic Platitudes!

Today's pedantic sentence:

The glorious milestone of a forum for personal expression and documentation of daily occurrences merited commemoration characterized by much conviviality and jubilation.

Translation: Birthday party for Pedantic Platitudes!

:: SL 12:20 PM [+] ::
Happy Birthday, Pedantic Platitudes!

One year ago, I started this blog. How quickly time passes! It seems like just yesterday I was sitting at my desk, typing out my thoughts for the very first time. Now, I reflect upon a year of (almost) daily writing.

So much has happened in one year! There were moments of disappointment and sadness, but there were many more moments of greatness and happiness. In this past year, I went to Taiwan by myself, I worked full-time as a journalist for a summer, and I made new friends, among other exciting adventures. I tried new things, I've learned more, and I've become wiser.

Here's to another great year for Pedantic Platitudes!

"Five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes,
How do you measure, measure a year?"

-From the musical Rent.

:: SL 12:19 PM [+] ::
Wow, I don't think I've ever seen it snow for such a long time! It started snowing so heavily late last night, and by the time I went to bed a substantial amount had already piled up on the ground. Then, it snowed as heavily all night, and it has snowed all day today. There is snow everywhere. Taking advantage of this fact, a big group of people built an igloo in the courtyard this afternoon.

Today, I actually got up earlier than I usually do on weekends. I then proceeded to work a little bit on my website using the program Dreamweaver. I then started working on learning some new Chinese vocabulary. The words are a lot harder to write this time!

Dinner was nice; a lot of us were there, and we had a great time. Although the dining hall was short-staffed, they still worked really hard to get us a meal. Tonight, I went to see my roommate's band, Low Tech Sexy, play at the Leverett Coffeehouse, which is where they set up tables and chairs so you can enjoy snacks while listening to students perform things from poetry to music.

After helping to take down the music equipment, I went to a birthday party for a former entryway-mate. It was cool to see a lot of the people who were in my entryway last year and catch up with how they were doing. We had snacks and played games and danced to music. I then came back to my room and finished studying Chinese.

Quote of the Day: "We had to paint our chickens with White-Out to see where their joints were."

:: SL 9:03 AM [+] ::
:: Friday, December 05, 2003 ::
One of the more disturbing things I've seen all week: Badger.

(File this one under Bad Shockwave Animations.)

:: SL 10:49 AM [+] ::
Wow, what a long day. Today, I finished up my big Science B-29 paper and went to section for that class. It was interesting to hear everyone talk about their projects. I never knew HotOrNot.com could be used for a scientific purpose! Following class, I had lunch with my friend Alex, and then we went to lecture for Science B-29. It was an interesting scientific look at religion.

I went to Chinese and was going to meet with my Justice TF afterwards, but she had scheduled our meeting at a time that precluded me from taking a nap. I killed some time online, and then I went to meet with my TF, who didn't show up. At least my trip all the way to the yard in the cold was redeemed by the fact that there was a fancy reception in the room where I was supposed to meet my TF, so I got some fancy catered snacks, including starfruit! I didn't think I'd ever see starfruit here, but there it was, and it was delicious!

I headed back to the Leverett dining hall and caught up with my friends Alex and Alex. We discussed websites, and afterwards Alex helped me set up a domain name for my new website, which will debut soon. I went back to the dining hall to have dinner, and then I met up with a bunch of friends to go see the movie Election, which was playing for 25-cent movie night. It was quite enjoyable and hilarious; I had forgotten how funny it was.

Following the event, we went to Tommy's Value to pick up some milk and cookies. We heated the chewy chocolate chip cookies in the microwave, and they were delicious. I then went back to my room and went to sleep because I was so tired.

Quote of the Day: "It's raining Mensheviks!"

:: SL 9:14 AM [+] ::
:: Thursday, December 04, 2003 ::
Another great advancement in the wonderful world of science.

:: SL 6:44 PM [+] ::
Today, I went to my cognitive psychology class, section for Justice, and Chinese. After Chinese, I went to a group meeting with my Justice TF (teaching fellow), and we discussed the upcoming paper we have to write.

I then had lunch with my good friends Alex and Alex. Alex and I then discussed our research project, which is due tomorrow. After talking to him, I started working on my paper. I also did some thinking for my Justice paper.

At dinner, I met with another group and my Justice TF to discuss our papers. I finally got back to my room and resumed working on my Science B-29 paper, until I got distracted by reading random blogs online.

Tonight, I went to a quick study break hosted by my friend Kate in Mather House, and that was a happening party. She baked some really delicious gingersnap cookies, which I enjoyed.

I finally really settled down to write my Science B-29 research paper and spent the rest of the night finishing it.

Quote of the Day: "How many Muppets had to die to make your coat?"

:: SL 8:14 AM [+] ::
:: Wednesday, December 03, 2003 ::
Today was a long day of classes. There was Justice, then section for cognitive psychology, then lecture for Science B-29, then Chinese, then office hours with Professor Sandel of Justice.

At dinner tonight they were showing Finding Nemo! I got to the dining hall just as the movie was starting, and I ended up staying to watch the whole thing. What a great movie! Even the sound wasn't good and everyone was talking in the dining hall, there were still captions, so I could read the lines in the movie.

Tonight, I went to Lamont Library and did reading for my moral reasoning class. It was pretty dry. Afterwards, I went to The Grille with a couple of fun friends, and we enjoyed Krispy Kreme donuts (plain, glazed) as a nighttime snack. I then studied some Chinese and went to sleep early because I have an early class tomorrow morning.

Quote of the Day: "At least you can't spread disease by running around naked."

:: SL 9:30 AM [+] ::
:: Tuesday, December 02, 2003 ::
It's snowing!!!

:: SL 9:25 AM [+] ::
Wow, I can't believe I've blocked over a thousand pop-up ads already with my pop-up blocker!

I woke up this morning and looked out the window, and it was snowing!!! It was really pretty, with the flakes drifting down gently. Strangely, the sun was shining brightly. Eventually, the snow subsided when I headed out the door to go to class, but the ground was still really slippery with ice. Cognitive psychology class today was cool because we were talking about language acquisition, which is a topic of interest to me.

I then did some more mad studying for my Chinese exam in the afternoon. It began to snow again, and I was reminded of a few cheery holiday tunes. Following lunch, I trudged all the way through the cold to take the test. The test was tedious. It was so long that most students had to stay after class to finish. Alas.

After finishing the test, it was dark outside. I went back to Leverett, had dinner, did some website designing, and then spent the rest of the evening catching up on Chinese homework.

Quote of the Day: "I did not imply a causality between an inability to hear and an affinity towards bright colors!"

:: SL 8:54 AM [+] ::
:: Monday, December 01, 2003 ::
Today, I went to all my classes, starting with Justice at 11 and continuing until the end of my psychology tutorial at 6 p.m. I got lucky and was able to procure a ticket to the Hardball event tonight at the Kennedy School of Government. Today's guest with Chris Matthews was Democratic presidential candidate and front-runner Howard Dean, former governor of Vermont.

This was the sixth show in the series, and it was the most popular, since Howard Dean is doing so well in the polls. A ton of people showed up, and it was quite difficult to find a place to watch the taping. Chris Matthews really grilled Howard Dean today on the show, but I thought Dean still came out on top. Even though some of his responses weren't all that popular, he was still so charismatic that at the end you left with a good feeling about this candidate.

Tonight, I studied madly for my Chinese exam tomorrow. I took a big study break in the middle of the night when a huge group of my friends congregated to have tea and snacks on this fine evening. It was a bit raucous but as always a ton of fun. I then continued studying Chinese.

Quote of the Day: "Scurvy... Arrgh!"

:: SL 4:03 AM [+] ::

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?