Thursday, March 31, 2005


You wanted to do what today?

So for everyone in the southeast, it's raining and will continue to do so mostly all day. This is pertinent information because I was supposed to go golfing today. Golfing on a work day!?!?!?!?! Calm down, it's ok. It's a College of Engineering and Science golf tournament for alumni, faculty, and students, so it's mildly acceptable to skip work. And it's a sweet deal for students as well. $25 for golfing, cart, free drinks/beer and snacks all day provided by the beer wenches, and then door prizes at the post-golf barbecue. And you don't have to work. And our golf course is really nice. Don't know off-hand how many universities have their own golf courses, but ours is pretty nice. And it has the signature "Tiger Paw Hole". I'm sure some of you remember how Clemson's tiger paws (trademarked of course) is on everything including the seats of the Clemson Area Transit buses. The hole looks like

this and is a nice little par 3.

I suck at golf by the way and never ever want to be good at it. That would make me focus more on performing well and less on spending time with friends, enjoying the outdoors, and enjoying a few tasty beverages.

Now for a few news stories that caught my eye:

Hillary Swank fined for bringing an orange and apple into New Zealand from LA. She was fined a total of $163 and appealed it, and rightfully lost her appeal. Australia and New Zealand are a little worried about introducing new species into their wild ecosystems. And last time I checked Hillary, you could spare the money. So pay the money and stop wasting those Kiwis' time.

And sadly Johnny Cochran has passed.

He was 67 and died from an inoperable brain tumor. Johnny, your candidness and ability to change any situation into a race conflict will be missed. And your ability to get anyone off for anything. OJ surely thanks you from the bottom of his heart. You also inspired a great Seinfeld character, Jackie Chiles

"You used the balm. Who told you to use the balm? I didn't tell you to use the balm," from the hot coffee episode and the great smoking episode also. You'll be missed as an entertainer by me and an attorney by others Johnny.

Holy crap, Joan made me watch Showdog Moms and Dads on Bravo last night. Damn, that was awful and hilarious. And we also caught the tail end of the Westminster Kennel Show. That was awesome. I'm sure most of you know that I am easily amused and still find humor in funny words and double entendres. Last night was no exception. Apparently, when little kids say that they can say bitch when talking about a female dog, they're right. Bitches were flying left and right. My favorite was by the head judge of the Kennel Club, very proper maybe uptight lady, "She did very well. That bitch did everything right." Oh man, awesome. But the TV show was pretty much like the mockumentary "Best in Show" and the movie was a little funnier because you can imagine that those people might not exist. With the reality show, they're right there and crazy as ever.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005



So I have noticed that there is something in our water. E-Lo, Catt, John(John's wife) all have new babies on the way. Which is great. All of it. And John's chitlin is due in October, not the best month to have a kid (September is the best, New Year's conceived babies!) but it's LA so it doesn't matter. I get the impression that they don't have seasons over there.

I said in my comments down below that I find pregnant women sexy. I do. I think it's something primal. The idea of a human growing inside of you and then they get to grow up and help the earth somehow. At least I hope they help as opposed to being the Anti-Christ or Anti-Mohammed if you're of that persuasion.

The belly is so alluring. I know everyone remembers the cover of Vanity Fair (googled) where she posed naked and ready to pop. If you don't remember it
there you go.

And of course the belly is symmetrical, which all the Discovery channel shows that I watch on human attraction tell me is what our species desire. It's a perfect round globe. Now none of the above mentioned new or new again parents are at that stage, maybe John's woman is since I don't know when you start to show and all that, but they will get there. And for the love, don't touch their bellies. Ever get between a Mama bear or crocodile and her babies? No cuz if you did, you'd be dead. So don't EVER touch the belly of a mother-to-be without express verbal, if not written, consent. Just my little public service announcement to help out all my favorite chicas. I gotcha back.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005


Ahhh, virus!

So I'm blaming my current sniffles on Regan. She's a geneticist and had some horrible virus about a month ago and I think she captured it and mutated it and sent it to me through Haloscan. But that is just a theory.

My favorite part of being sick, aside from getting better and the lack of appetite, is those 5-10 glorious seconds when your stopped up nose switches nostrils and you can breath freely through both simultaneously. It's amazing and such a brief respite from an otherwise crappy cold.

I haven't bought any medicine/drugs yet. Maybe I will. We have some Tylenol Flu Nighttime but it didn't seem like a good idea to take that before work. Unless I worked in a mattress store and was going to be giving free demonstrations of what a great night sleep you could get on our merchandise.

Damn, it has been a while since I blogged last. Alot has happened since my last real post. Two weekends ago went to the Cherokee Trails Rally near the Ocoee River in Tennessee, which was the sight of the olympic kayaking events during the '96 ATL summer Olympics. That was a great time. Got to meet a bunch of drivers and see some wicked cars flying through the woods. I worked finish control for 4 stages, out of 12. Finish control is where the cars come through and hand us their time sheet and we write down their finishing time. Pretty straightforward, some drivers were nice, some quiet, some a little rude.

We had it set up so that there was a 200 yd stretch of road between where the finish line was and where the cars would stop and let us write down the times. And it was really cool seeing that flying finish. And the last stage we worked was at night, so we were blinded by those crazy rally pod lights. Like these
And only a couple of the drivers didn't turn them off while at control because those things are bright. You really can't look at them.

One guy told me that after driving with those, even with your brights on, it doesn't feel like there is enough light. Crazy.

I did get a flat tire driving through the woods trying to find a campsite. But got that fixed with a used tire from a local guy. Nice guy and it was really funny listening to his daughter translate what he was saying to my friend from PA.

Monday, March 28, 2005


That was alot of rain

Drove back from Florida yesterday. It rained for about 6 of the 9 hours that I was driving. I drove both ways. Joan actually only drove one-way to her friend's house and back from Tampa to Orlando. But I like driving and would've let her drive if I was sleepy but I was okay. And SC roads suck. They don't drain properly and there were several tense split seconds of sliding/hydroplaning.

Lots of work to do, lots of blogs to read, lots of pictures and videos to sort through and post.

I currently weigh the heaviest ever in my life, so congratulations to my chunky ass and thanks to Florida for helping that. I even walked around all day at Busch Gardens in Tampa. I guess one day of moderate walking just isn't the miracle diet I thought it would be. So I get to reacquaint myself with our school rec center. And I have to get Joan to go to, but I've always found it easier to go on my way home cuz once I'm home it takes a force of nature to get me to leave, especially to go work out, which is basically torture but it does make you feel better. And I will be a better climber and my car will go faster.

Sunday, March 20, 2005


Me so dirty

So got back last night, rally was excellent. Got scared shitless by a wild dog the first night. Flat tire the second night. Rocks, dirt, turbos, cars, pod lights, and so many awesome cars.

But I have to now go pack and drive to Orlando, so next post will be from Orlando Seth, not to be confused with that sexy elf Orlando Bloom.

I have not gotten my postcard yet, but anything from Nawlins is fine with me Cooter.

Peace out.

Thursday, March 17, 2005


Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Hope you're all wearing green today. I am not coincidentally, just forgot. I have loved St. Paddy's Day ever since the first one I had after turning 21. I was in Lexington, KY (Jelly) for an undergraduate research conference at the University of Kentucky. I think it was on a Friday and we were all leaving Sat. Whenever it was, it was the night before we came home. Our chaperones were especially cool and were our designated drivers. We took the school van into town and he dropped us off and told us that he would pick us up at 12 or 1 am. Awesome. So it's 9 pm and we're wandering around the bustling metropolis/college town that is Lexington. So we find a pub, Irish or English, and sit down and have a few pints of Guinness because it is St. Patrick's Day. So we're all pretty sloshed by 11 and the whole scene is winding down. So we all start closing out our tabs when I see a man in a green suit walk by. Green jacket, green pants, green shirt, green hat. And his wife is dressed all in green as well. Being the loud drunk that I am, I say, "Dude, you have to come have a drink with us!"

So um, Seamus (not his real name, his mother was Irish but he's from Jersey) sits down and so does Wifey. They're amazing people with stories out the wazoo. So we have a few more rounds of Guinness and are chatting and having a grand old time. But this experience was my first for a real St. Patrick's Day (previous SPDs don't count if there wasn't booze involved. It's an Irish holiday for fuck's sake.) So I now know what the holiday is all about.

So tonight while I'm camping in the cold, hopefully around a fire if we can find some dry wood, I'll be thinking of that great green man and what St. Patrick's Day means to us all. I think it's Irish pride but I'm sure there is a much nobler meaning than that, but that's good enough for me.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005


Mini post?

Not much to say today. Maybe a mini post day. Or I could take a few quizzes I have in my email, we'll see if I have enough time. Today is busy because I have a take home test that I need to finish, and have a crystal to run on the x-ray diffractometer and once that is done, I'll try and solve it, and I also plan on getting some help solving the structure of the crystal that was on the x-ray last week.

Feliz Hump Day!

Tuesday, March 15, 2005


Almost forgot

I uploaded all of my racing videos from 2 weeks ago. It was the autocross on campus put on by the Clemson Sports Car Club.

There are videos of me, which can be found here.
And there are pictures from our snow day also. But if you live anywhere that gets real snow, don't laugh it's all we get all year, and don't be jealous either.

Other videos of fellow racers can be found on this website.

There are videos of a Subaru WRX with a nice exhaust on it and the other work that I've told you about.

Also a Mazda Protege ES that we have also done work on and there is one video of me driving it, in car view. The comment I make is "Fuck. That was retarded," which is in reference to how awesome the new dampers felt. His car was so smooth and flat through that slalom.

And a Volkswagen Beetle who was racing in his 2nd autocross ever.

Enjoy and feel free to stream those videos, it's "free" bandwidth thanks to my tuition.


We miss you Kate!

Kate has stopped blogging, but hopefully she'll be back. I think it was really cathartic for her. She always had such personal and moving posts. She conveyed her feelings and emotions so well. But shame on her for leaving us without a saucy ending to her BBB saga. She was getting flirty with a nice black man she worked with and now we will never have the juicy ending we all wanted for Kate. But we can dream.

I saw in the Birmingham newspaper that Alabama is going to be voting on whether or not they want to add a gay marriage ban to the state constitution. Here is a wild prediction based on years of living there and in the South. It's going to pass. Unless all the AL gays, lesbians, transgendered, and their supporters go on an anti-voting campaign because they will most likely not get people to vote for them, so I think their best bet is to convince people not to vote. The vote will be in November, I guess, of next year. Once the date gets closer I'll start asking my relatives how they plan on voting for that. Should be interesting. I'll keeps ya posted.

Also saw in the paper that the chief of police of a small town was convicted for raping a 10 year old girl. But at least he's convicted and will serve at least 10 years with a max of life. And he's a cop and I hear they don't fare so well in prison. Especially Alabama's overcrowded prisons. Also hear rapists don't fare so well in prison either, so he'll get his.

Has everyone been following the Terri Schiavo story out of Florida? Apparently the court has ruled and her feeding tube will come out this Friday. Someone brought up a good point that the money keeping her alive and the time used on her case could both be used for better causes. But the fact that her husband has remarried and already collected on her insurance settlement or malpractice settlement is a little shady.

Joan and I have discussed this, which I presume Terri and her husband did also, but now I know without anything in writing, it's all just hearsay. So once Joan and I get out of this lovely state full of South Carolinians, and one of us (probably me) gets a real job, then we can put all this stuff into writing and get it notarized and make it legal Smiegel.

I just hope we can find a lawyer with a soul. There are so few out there.

Monday, March 14, 2005


Those poor diabetic squirrels

Had a sit down with Dad this weekend. He explained that he was just giving advice because we asked for it. Granted that was 4 months ago, but I'll let it slide. He promised that they wouldn't ever offer advice unless we asked for it, which is nice. He just told me to be realistic and know that 50% of marriages fail, which I know, so to just cover my ass. Thanks for the concern, but it sounds like you don't believe in our marriage. It's not that, they're just looking out for me. Awww but that's still a little twisted.

Although he did show me some stuff he found on which says that eleven states and D.C. recognize common-law marriages. In good ol' SC, all it takes is: "A common-law marriage is established if a man and woman intend for others to believe they are married." That's it? And then I can be on her health insurance and take marriage credits? Well sure thing. So I guess I didn't lie to the IRS, we really are married, sort of. Awesome.

We bought a radar detector also last week and this weekend was the first time I really got to use it on the interstate. Only saw one speed trap and it was on the other side. It didn't go off so I'm assuming that they were using laser. Since laser is so precise, it basically has to actually hit the detector for it to go off. One website I saw, if they bounced it off your front plate, not one detector went off. Even the really fancy expensive ones. Crazy.

So HAPPY BIRTHDAY VADERGRRRL! Hope you received all the spankings you deserved!

On the "making Focus cooler" front, I'm still waiting to sell the kayak and then I plan on upgrading shocks, springs and brakes, both pads and rotors. So I need to email Ruthie, linked to your left, and she if she REALLY wants my kayak and stuff, if not then I'll probably just list it on It's a print and online classified listing thing and generated plenty of interest for my motorcycle so maybe it would work for the kayak.

And Joan brought up the possibility of selling Clio, the Saturn, and Turkel, the Tercel, or trading them in and getting a newer car. We have some money saved up, but that doesn't mean I want to go blowing it on cars. Yes I want to but I know I shouldn't, stupid responsibilities. So again begins the process of buying another car. Haven't made up my mind as to whether we're going to trade in both our cars, or try to sell them ourselves, or sell one and fix the other. Or sell both and me take the bus to school (not likely, we really like each having a car). But I do plan on taking the bus to school a little more once the weather decides what it's going to do. The biggest factor in that decision is gas prices, which I'm sure for some is above $2/gallon for unleaded and damn sorry for you high performance car drivers (which I strive to be once I can afford the car and gas). And also Clemson wants to instate a transit fee and increase the parking fee. Transit fee would help increase the "right now free" Clemson bus system, CAT - Clemson Area Transit which is a great service for both students and the community. The increased parking fee would help build parking decks around campus, which we need and we also pay some of the lowest parking fees in the nation. Currently commuters pay $67 for a year long parking pass. I know other schools are as high as $400 with some being higher.

So have a good week and remember, SPRING BREAK STARTS FRIDAY! Not that grad students are supposed to get it, indentured servanthood and all, but my boss is cool and knows that I can make up the work missed.

Friday, March 11, 2005


REAL liquid nitrogen

Just for Cooter, here is an actual liquid nitrogen post. And I do need to try this sometime. It sounds delicious.

Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream

We mixed up a standard ice cream recipe calling for two quarts of cream, sugar, eggs, vanilla and flavoring. (Just about any ice cream recipe and flavor will work.) Then, working in a well-ventilated area (lest the nitrogen displace oxygen from the air) and with due regard for the ability of liquid nitrogen to freeze body parts solid, we gently folded about two liters of nitrogen syrup directly into the cream, much as you would fold in egg whites.

The result, literally 30 seconds later, was a half-gallon of the best ice cream I'd ever tasted. The secret is in the rapid freezing. When cream is frozen by liquid nitrogen at -196°C, the ice crystals that give bad ice cream its grainy texture have no chance to form. Instead you get microcrystalline ice cream that is supremely smooth, creamy and light in texture. Martha Stewart, eat your heart out.

Mmmmmmm, definitely gonna have to try that. I especially like the "30 seconds" part because I have made ice cream using a crank and salt and it takes a while. I do love me a good ice cream social.

Now all I need is a good ice cream recipe and a dewar of liq. N2 from our lab and Voila! Yummy yummy ice cream.

Seeing as how it's the calm before the storm, I leave you with a light-hearted story of youth, theft, and M&Ms.

At my undergrad institution we noticed that sometimes as we were leaving the cafeteria the back way, that they would leave the door to their storage room open. Being a religiously affiliated university, you had to make your own fun, or commit your own fun as the case may be. So as we left dinner one evening, we decided to go in and take a look around. 5 lbs. of mayonnaise, 10 lbs. of pickles, cases of cartons of egg (yeah, nothing more weird than seeing someone pour a carton of yellow goo out and making scrambled eggs for ya) and a case of 3 lb. M&M bags, 5 actually. So not wanting to have mayo wrestling night or a pickle fest, we chose the chocolate with the thin candy shell. with a peanut inside.

So we make it back to our dorm room, this is freshman year and the freshman dorm is up the hill from the cafeteria, and open the box to divvy up the score and my roommate and I end up with 3 3 lb. bags of peanut M&Ms. The others were given to friends. The one bag I kept lasted for about 8 months. The other two were eaten but we barely made a dent in those 6 lbs. So one day, I threw a M&M out the window. We were on the 2nd floor above a grassy corner around the dorm. So we started throwing more of them out the window. So many that it changed the color of the grass. But we also noticed that squirrels would come around and eat them. So we continued tossing M&Ms out the window and feeding our squirrels. This continued for a couple days until we had emptied out the other two sacks of candy. A total of about 4-5 lbs. of peanut M&Ms was now on the lawn. But we also noticed that the squirrels had stopped coming. Maybe they figured out that candy is bad for you, until we saw one squirrel waddle out and grab some candy. So to those diabetic, overweight squirrels, I'm sorry.

Thursday, March 10, 2005



Yesterday I finished up Iris Chang's "The Rape of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust of WWII". It is a historical non-fiction tale of the Japanese invasion of Nanking, China before and during WWII (WW2 looks weird). The death count in Nanking alone is estimated at 300,000 people dead, soldiers and private citizens. But what makes it extra special bad is how these people were killed, shot in the back, tied to trees and beaten, starved, sliced with swords or bayonets and rape. The Japanese dropped fliers and propaganda from the skies saying "The Japanese are your friend. We will feed you. Return to your homes." And had pictures of children being fed by a Japanese soldier. This was not even remotely the case.

But let's start at the beginning, and just a word of caution to Jamie, it seems like the Japanese are at a crossroads right now as to whether or not they will continue to ignore this atrocity or fess up and start making reparations, so it is most likely a touchy subject. But if you do get a chance to look in a Japanese history textbook, see what it says about the Japanese occupation of China.

Japan was en route to take over southeast Asia and saw China as the first big step. They invaded and took over Shanghai, the capital of China, and Nanking, a city of 1 million people, was just down the road and next in line. Half of the city evacuated and the other half either were too poor or sick to travel or didn't want to. The Chinese army set up in the city but they lacked communication and couldn't coordinate efforts within the city to mount a strong defense. And the city fell.

Before this, several foreigners, Germans and Americans mostly but also some Russian and Danish, set up Safety Zones for civilians to come and "be safe" from the marauding armies. There were many heroes that came out of this tragedy but Iris chose to focus on 3 individuals and I will only tell of 1. His name was John Rabe and he was German. He was also a Nazi but he went in for the socialist aspects of Nazism and not the genocidal aspects. He worked and lived in China and felt a deep connection to the city and country and to its people, so instead of fleeing he help set up and run a Safety Zone. He contacted higher ups in the Nazi party even trying to contact Hitler and tell him of the atrocities so they could put diplomatic pressure on Japan to make them stop.

I won't go into the atrocities but a few examples are: killing contests between Japanese soldiers, live burials, mutilations, pouring gas on prisoners and setting them on fire, and raping women and men from 8 to 60 or 70.

She ventures a guess as to why and how this happened. One factor was many in the Japanese military had such contempt for the Chinese people cultivated by decades of propaganda, education, and social indoctrination. One Japanese general is quoted, talking to a correspondent, "To be frank, your view of Chinese is totally different from mine. You regard the Chinese as human beings while I regard the Chinese as pigs."

And also religion. The Japanese were taught that the emperor was the ruler of the natural world and the Japanese were the chosen people so anyone else is inferior to them.

I'm writing this today just to educate. I bareley knew that Japan and China went to war let alone what happened in this war. Estimates put the total of Chinese deaths at 19 million. The entire world knows about what the Nazis did to the Jews but something just as bad, if not worse, happened to the Chinese and no one knows about it.

Another reason is that Japan still has not made amends to the Chinese people that their armies brutalized. Germany has paid close to $60 billion in reparations to the Jewish people. Japan has not paid one cent and some high level officials even claim that The Rape of Nanking didn't happen and is just Chinese propaganda. It is even edited out or glazed over in Japanese history textbooks.

As I stated earlier, Japan is at a crossroads: either stand up and make amends or doing nothing, worse still, hiding the fact that it even happened.

This post is dedicated to Iris Chang who took her own life on Nov. 9 2004.

Iris Chang Mar. 28, 1968 - Nov. 9, 2004

Wednesday, March 09, 2005


Allstate my ass

So my car insurance, which I pay every 6 months to avoid their $8 monthly payment processing fee, is up on Mar. 12th. It's $753 for Focus and Clio, '04 Focus and '93 Saturn respectively. Oh and if anyone knows a good car name, I'm all ears, I'm stuck on what to call Focus.

And if I sell Clio, which is currently the plan, my premium goes up to $820. WTF? But I think we're going to try a little scheme. The insurance companies don't check to see if you're actually married or not, so we're going to claim that we are, which will eventually happen so it isn't REALLY a lie, only a temporary one. So we tried that at Allstate and even with Joan's 2 tickets, or rates go down $8. If she didn't have those, it would go down $50. So we're gonna do that and pick the best rate either with Allstate or State Farm, mine and hers. I have used Progressive in the past and might check with them, but both our insurance companies have offices about 4 minutes from our house and it's so convenient to go bug them when we have a question.

Okay, Joan just called and it sounds like State Farm is slightly cheaper so they're getting my bizness, sorry Allstate, but thanks for covering the myriad accidents I had the last couple years. Huh? I didn't have any? Then thanks for taking my money and keeping me legally on the road.

And anyone who lives around Mt. St. Helens, DUCK!

Very sad story but important life lesson, be extreeeemely careful what you buy from street vendors, abroad and at home. Don't eat the cassava balls!

And the cohabitation drama isn't over, it's postponed until this weekend when I get to see my parents! Yay! But Joan can't go cuz she has to work, Boo!

I am going to have to take notes about what my parents and I talk about; Joan is never satisfied with my brief synopsis of what happened, she wants a word for word recounting of the events, so I'll do my best, but that isn't for a few days and I got crystals to worry about before then.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005



Hmmm, don't know what to write about today. I was gonna finish my thoughts on the european/american car markets and might do that later today.

The parentals sent Joan and I an email basically explaining that our marriage was going to fail because we lived together before we are married. Don't really know what to say to that. But I know they just want what is best for me and it isn't up to them but it's nice to know their input.

This is the link that they sent us and my dad quoted one passage:
“One study that you may find interesting was done by Bennett, Blan, and Bloom (American Sociological Review, 1988, Vol 53: 127-138) entitled, "Commitment and the Modern Union: Assessing the Link Between Premarital Cohabitation and Subsequent Marital Stability."

“The point made by the authors is that, overall, the risk of divorce after living together is 80% higher than the risk of divorce after not living together, which is already too high. In other words, those who live together before marriage are almost twice as likely to divorce than those who did not live together. But they also point out that the risk of divorce is even higher if you don't live together more than three years prior to marriage. The longer you live together prior to marriage, the less the risk of divorce until after 8 years of living together, when the risk of divorce is equal to those who have not lived together. “

So basically now we have to postpone our marriage even longer to reach that 8 year goal and even out our chance of divorce. Thanks Dad!

But I see us as married now anyway, so all of this is just a weird foray into some strange realm of parenting. But I think it's time for a little sit down with the parents and tell them that I'm out of the nest now and while I know that they don't mean to be hurtful, Joan is confused by their comments and concerns that appear out of nowhere. (This was just a random email sent by the folks.)

I haven't read through those articles yet, but I want to just to see if they propose a reason as to why the chances of divorce are that much higher. It seems strange to me, but I'm not a sociologist, so hopefully they have some clues. Not that I believe in statistics or that what happened to others will happen to me but it's good to stay informed.

I'm on the election committee for the graduate student senate so I have to go count some votes.

Monday, March 07, 2005


I take a deep breath and I step outside

Racing went okay this weekend. Here are the results from Saturday. It was actually a two day autocross so that was nice. But I could not get faster on Sunday. At all. Usually the trend is that your last run is the fastest. This did not hold true on Sun. My first run was the fastest and I tried with my 4 other passes to get faster only to fail each time. But I still won my class, G for any NASA people, and got a little trophy! Yay! It reminds me of the trophies that are handed out for kids sports, but not everyone gets these.

My friend with the Protege finally beat me on Sunday. I had a 53.35 or so for my fast time and he put down a 52.23 for his. Excellent job and I'm proud of him. But once I get my suspension work done, it's on. And once I replace my bent rim. And if I can find some cheap race tires, then I would use those, but that's cheating in my opinion. I still wanna see how Focus would handle with race tires though.

I have videos and a few pictures and will get those up sometime this week.

And if you recognize the lyrics from the post title then congratulations, you win the 90's music trivia of the day award!

Thursday, March 03, 2005


Poor Bubba

Bubba the 22 pound lobster is dead

I wonder how he would've tasted. And here is the previous article that quotes both PETAs, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and People for the Eating of Tasty Animals.

At Tuesday's price of $14.98 a pound, Bubba would retail for about $350.

My favorite part is this:
Based on how long it typically takes a lobster to reach eating size -- about five to seven years to grow to a pound -- some estimate Bubba is 100 years old.

But Bob Bayer, executive director of the University of Maine's Lobster Institute, is skeptical and estimates that Bubba is likely 50 years old. Warm water and plenty of food may have more to do with a lobster's size than how long it's been alive, he said.

Personally I'm going to believe the director of the Lobster Institute. Now that is a scientific benefit I want to attend. For appetizers, lobster ceviche, then lobster bisque, then lobster salad, then lobster ravioli, then lobster thermidor, then lobster ice cream with lobster pie. Mmmmm, so much lobster.

Sorry if that cartoon below offends anyone but a few papers around the country pulled it for not stating facts. To which the common sense approach is, it's a comic. Cats can't really talk. Dennis isn't really a menace. Grimm also cannot talk. There is no Apartment 5G.

I know I haven't posted any videos from the last autocross, but there is another one on Friday and I'll get the new and old pics up ASAP. It'll probably be on one of my clemson websites. But I'll provide that linkola whenever I get those up.

I won't be around tomorrow and I mostly don't post on the weekends, so ENJOY THE REST OF TODAY AND YOUR WEEKEND!

Wednesday, March 02, 2005





This Friday I have a graduate student health insurance summit in Columbia, SC. Attending will be grad student representatives from Clemson, U of South Carolina and Medical U of South Carolina. Also in attendance will be state staffers from various state agencies, SC Commission on Higher Education, Senate Finance Committee, SC Dept. of Commerce, etc. So this is a fairly important meeting and a chance to show that grad students are concerned about this issue and want resolution.

So I get to pimp the Grad School minivan down to Columbia with the 7 or so people going from here. I need to send out an email because it doesn't have a CD player and I don't want to have to surf the dial and no one has tapes anymore. But we can use a cassette adaptor so I'm sending out the email asking if anyone has one of those.

I'm not sure if I do or not, I'll check when I get home tonight.

Last night I helped a friend put in some new struts onto his Protege. Pretty cheap actually, 4 adjustable struts for $450, but of course you would need new springs too so add in another $200-300 for those. I think the only Protege driver in our little blogosphere is April, but I could be mistaken. No one else talks about their car. And I assume that you all have cars.

I have another autocross this Saturday, and yes I get a little throttle happy around those times, so to combat this I'm planning on taping my warning from the DUI stop onto the dashboard of the minivan. Just a friendly reminder to slow the hell down and not kill myself and my 6 passengers.

But I'm looking forward to the autocross for lots of reasons:
1) I get to race.
2) I get to see how those new adjustable dampers (struts) work on my friend's car.
3) I get to see if Beetle Buddy can go even faster.
4) I get to race and not get tickets or fear for public safety.

I guess that's about it. And before the autocross I need to come in and put a crystal on the X-ray diffractometer. We use that to determine the structure of our crystals so that we know what the hell it is.

I took some crystals out last week that could possibly be sapphire and if it is then I plan on doping in a little chromium and making some ruby, so I'll let you know how that goes, and I'm going to go ahead and jump the gun and if anyone wants a very small ruby (0.5mm-1mm) just let me know.

And before I forget, lots of NORML action all over the country, the list of states with medical marijuana bills before their senate and/or house is quite impressive now. Here is the list and click here to take action and be NORML! or click directly on your state's link.

So please contact your state senators and representatives and make a difference.

Alaska - Alaska Governor Is Attempting To Make Marijuana Possession A Felony
Alaska - Alaska Governor Is Attempting To Make Marijuana Possession A Felony
Alabama - Alabama Legislature To Consider Medical Marijuana
California - California Legislature Considers Industrial Hemp
Connecticut - Connecticut Legislature Considers Medical Marijuana
Iowa - Iowa Senate Considers Medical Marijuana
Minnesota - Minnesota Senate Considers Medical Marijuana
Missouri - Missouri Considers Punishing Columbia For Easing Marijuana Laws
New Hampshire - New Hampshire Considers Industrial Hemp
New Hampshire - New Hampshire Considers Medical Marijuana
New Hampshire - New Hampshire Legislature Considers Decriminalization
New Jersey - New Jersey Senate Considers Medical Marijuana
New Mexico - New Mexico Senate Considers Medical Marijuana
Ohio - Ohio Senate Considers Medical Marijuana
Ohio - Ohio House Considers Dangerous Drugged Driving Legislation
Rhode Island - Rhode Island House Considers Medical Marijuana
Rhode Island - Rhode Island Senate Considers Medical Marijuana
Tennessee - Tennessee Senate Considers Medical Marijuana
Tennessee - Tennessee House Considers Medical Marijuana
Texas - Texas Legislature Considers Decriminalization
Texas - Texas Considers Bill To Protect Medical Marijuana Patients

Tuesday, March 01, 2005



So I don't have the most extensive vocabulary in the world, but as a chemist, I am not required to have one. That's why I haven't had a spelling/vocab test in roughly 7 years. And even then it is specialized vocab and not general.

I bring this up because the esteemed blogger Rob used the word "milquetoast" the other day. No clue what that meant so I looked it up. And here is what says:

milquetoast - One who has a meek, timid, unassertive nature.

[After Caspar Milquetoast, a comic-strip character created by Harold Tucker Webster (1885-1952).]

The whole word history is linked here:
  • milquewha?

  • That was one thing that Ang didn't or isn't liking about Tom Robbins book "Fierce Invalids Home from Hot Climates." And his prose is too flowery. It is but I like it, to a point. His assonant paragraphs are a little crazy and I just skim over them. After 4 or 5 "B" words, I get his point.

    But he also has a quite sizeable vocabulary and uses it freely. I should have written down the words so that I could've looked them up and bettered myself, but I didn't. Maybe because I didn't want to, maybe I knew I would never use them, maybe I'm not taking the SATs any time soon. 1240, thank you very much. I'm slightly above average!

    And speaking of tests, my lack of vocab and math fortitude shone through when I got my GRE scores back also. The GRE is the graduate record examination (had to look that up, what's a record examination?) and when I took it was scored out of 2400 points. 800 in vocab, math and analytical thinking. Don't remember the order but I do remember my scores. Around 510 in verbal, 560 in math, and 770 in analytical thinking. Now apparently the analytical part is a written essay so I'm wicked glad that I took it when I did. I'm borrowing wicked from April, but I'll give it back when I'm done.

    So basically, me no talky good, me no addy good, but I can think up a storm.

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