Monday, October 24

"But," you say, "what could possibly be more important that college?"

Q. "What could be more important than homework? You're a fulltime student." -Dad

A. Only about five things or so that I can name right off the top of my head.

Health There's little point in bothering with anything else if you are unhealthy. To put it in a morbid sort of way, keeping your health is keeping yourself as far from death as possible, because there isn't much that matters if you're dead.

Happiness As I don't know My Divine Purpose, if such a thing exists, I might as well just enjoy life. In fact, for lack of a better purpose, I take happiness and enjoyment as my purpose. Of course, health is mandatory to this.

Dan We aid each other in our attainment of health and happiness, and will always do so. I love Dan very much, and he ranks right up with health and happiness.

Nature I'm a pagan for a reason. All of our nourishment comes from nature (see health), plus I can usually comfort myself just by going outdoors (see happiness). Fresh air heals everything, and inspires as well.

Friends and family This doesn't really need to be explained. Good times happen among good company, and there are always ties to the people you come from.

Money In today's world, money is needed to attain health and happiness, at least for those of us who don't wish to live off the land. Money can't buy happiness? Try waxing philosophical when you have not a single pair of clean socks. College is only a vehicle for making more money.

Learning This is done every day, in every situation, and can be done as easily at a library as at a thousands-of-dollars-per-year institution. It goes beyond school, and sometimes is only barely achieved at school.

College comes after all these things (and maybe more which I have not thought of), especially since all these are permanent, necessary things, while college is only a phase in my life. So, it goes against my wishes that I will be driving in to school this morning on zero sleep. This will make me unhappy, and will certainly be a strain on my health, but I do it for money (I have work later) and learning (if such a thing happens at school).

Poor trade-off, but what the hell else am I supposed to do?

Monday, October 17

taxidermy of an ethicist

Anyone who bothers to look at this entry will get to read something interesting I learned in Contemporary Ethical Theory today.

Jeremy Bentham, the Utilitarian philosopher, left very specific instructions at his death. A large portion of his wealth was to be left to the university he taught at, on the condition that his stuffed body be in attendance at all the board meetings. The body now has a wax head, but to this day it is still wheeled out for important meetings. It used to be on display to the public, but now, if anyone visits London and wishes to see it, an appointment can be made.

I have to wonder if Bentham's own theories played any role in this. He was of the mind that the most moral way to live life is to strive for the maximum amount of pleasure or happiness for yourself and everyone around you. In a nutshell, his Principle of Utility is that the best action to take is the one that brings the most pleasure to everyone affected by the decision. He even had a system for rating pleasures to decide what the best course of action is, but I wonder if he really thought that the most pleasurable course of action was to have his stuffed body hanging around for centuries.

Wednesday, October 12

Two more funny spam e-mail names to add to the list:

Schallert Frisby
Danko Boone

I had something to write, but I forgot. That happens when you don't sleep.

I kind of sort think I might have passed my philosophy exam.

Monday, October 10

a rant about bad drivers of the weekend

Is it really so difficult to be a safe driver? Today I was driving on 6 East, getting off at the Killingly Street exit, when some assbag decided to tail me so closely that I was actually afraid to slow down at the off ramp. I was slowing down from 60 miles per hour, and yet this douche was probably less than five feet from the back of my car. There was very little traffic, so this bastard in a white sports car had absolutely no excuse.

Say a cat had dashed across the off ramp at that point. I would have instinctively hit the brakes, and at that speed, I would be putting not just my car, but my own life, in jeopardy because some arse can't drive. Forget that following distance is one of the major lessons taught in driver's ed; shouldn't it just be common sense to not put yourself and others around you at risk any more than you have to?

Now that I'm commuting, my encounters with people who don't know how to drive are more frequent. Just on Friday, I stopped at the dollar store at Lincoln Mall on my way home. Driving down Route 7, I merged to the left lane since the right one split off onto another road going to Woonsocket or North Smithfield. Immediately after I merged left, a white van came to almost a complete stop right in front of me, and I had to go back to the right lane to make sure I wouldn't hit him. Since he was practically stopped, I sped up and signalled that I was going to pass him, since I again had to get out of the right lane. Even though I had pulled ahead of him enough to make the pass, he started to speed up! At this point, my choices were: hit the signpost situated at the fork in the road, or speed up more to pass the turd.

Somehow, I'm the one who ended up getting honked at. ARGH!

with enthusiasm for my recent authorship...

In definition form, the events of my brothers' birthday party. Greg turned 18, Jeff turned 13.

A Candroid is a robot which is made of joints, strong magnets, clips, and a can head for storing small objects. Such robots are sometimes found posed with a winning scratchcard in one clip and a wad of money in the other.

A muppet man of indeterminate nationality is a small inch-high figurine which does not belong in the Homie Dog Pound machine, but should be accepted into one's life gracefully, and without regret that it might have been Clown Pitty instead. Also known as Wo Fat Sanchez.

A headache is a sense of dizziness and confusion felt in the brain when one is transporting one's chatty aunt and grandmother in a subcompact car and is on the receiving end of both their conversations.

A Coffee Chocolate Cheesecake is a prize-winning dessert served with a strong coffee sauce. Sometimes used as a boyfriend-replacement.

a great moment

All who read this may view my glory, my greatest accomplishment.

Go to Merriam-Webster Online's Open Dictionary. Search for the word "spork." Note who submitted it.

Yes, I have authored a dictionary definition of the word "spork." This sure beats graduating high school!

Saturday, October 8

obsessive compulsive disorder

I'm sick of how cavalier people are with the term "obsessive compulsive." A person who is organized may be just that; organized. Also, being either obsessive or compulsive does not mean that someone has a serious illness. Dan tells me that with pretty much any psychological disorder, it isn't considered a disorder unless it impedes with the person's daily life. I don't know much about psychology, but I do know that obsessive compulsive disorder is a serious thing for many people. My dad was just talking about his Uncle Dick. Uncle Dick is someone who really suffers from obsessive compulsive disorder. I've only met him twice because he hasn't left his house for years. His disorder started out with the well-known handwashing issue, but now he is so afraid of germs that he can't leave the house, and when relatives tried to get him to take medication, he couldn't because he was actually terrified to do so. He will only eat foods that have been packaged a certain way. The two times I met him were at the funeral of my Nona, his mother, and the funeral of my Aunt Ida, his elder sister. Think of that. He's been in that house my entire life, possibly longer, and the only occasions he found the strength to emerge for were the funerals of people he loved.

It's amazing how many people think they have serious psychological disorders. Every time some stupid shit says, "Yeah, I'm obsessive compulsive," I want to bludgeon them with some psychology textbook.

Wow, that sounded like Dan.

Wednesday, October 5

"stars will fall down... luck will surrender"

Working at Donovan today was way more fun than it had any right to be. Barry ruined everything and along with the other Kristen, we created soap bubble children by combining the power of sanitizer with the suds of soap in the womb of Peter Pan Dandy.
I hope never to type such a sentence as the previous again, but shooting soap bubbles up at the ceiling is ridiculously funny, as is looking for shapes in soap bubble patterns on the sinktop.

At one point, I was talking to Kristen (note: she's an EN Kristin, though not evil for it) and we have both found that we've met more people working at Donovan than anywhere else at college. I'm on my third year at RIC now, and it's only this year I've really adopted something of a social life, albeit an oftentimes Donovan-centric social life. In the past few months or so, I've tripled my livejournal friends list.

It's only October, but I know this school year will be an awesome one. I knew it even before it started; there are signs every time I have a good year. This time, it might have been the master list of things I needed to do to improve my life. It might have been my prayer to help me follow the list. It might have been the few pounds I lost last year giving me an extra bit of confidence to add some scintillating bit of excitement that wasn't there before. It might have been Dan's love and encouragement. It might have been the car and the independence it has brought.

Folks (all two of you), I would say at this moment that life is good. Despite lost bets and binders, and the irritations of, literally, mice and men. I've never read that book.

This morning I was woken up by my Dad yelling to the rest of the family, "Be quiet! Whisper, or you'll wake up Kristin!"

I'm thinking of making this blog public, at least to those listed as friends on my livejournal. Having a secret blog has lost its novelty.

The potentially boring school update

The Binder was obviously a great idea for a scattered person such as myself, who uses her organizational skills mostly to alphabetize the tracks on mix cd's. I had not counted on losing the binder for about five days, thus causing myself to feel lost, homework-wise. The Binder was found under some papers in Dan's car.

My Adv Fiction Writing course is sucking most of my energy, though not with yellow yarn. My 10-15 page short story, which is one of the three to be discussed in class this week, killed any attempts at going to my other classes last week. I missed going to philosophy; I'm planning on concentrating my philosophy major on ethics, so Contemporary Ethical Theory is interesting to me. For her entertainment value, I even missed the FSDDLS (Fat, Stupid, D&D Light Spectrum) girl, who argues examples not points and was a total bitch to Mike in his livejournal. Social psych, for the two or so classes I've actually been, hasn't been that interesting, but I found out that Anthony (Donovan worker, not Druid, who already has a psych degree) is in my class.

Shoreline Production is going well. I'm in charge of the website, which doesn't exist yet, and I will also be in charge of Photoshopping the logo our Art Editor designs. Still, I'm hoping for that fiction editor position. With the website and the e-mail I set up, I'm pretty much doing the job, but I would like the title as well. Good resume material and all. I also have a lot of other web stuff to get done: changing this damn layout template to something of my own, adding to the RICPG site, working on a RICPG logo, working on an Ocean's Tide logo, and maybe starting the Ocean's Tide site? I'm not sure if Anthony was going to do that, but I can at least start it since he's even busier than I am.

Monday, October 3

Gambling and the Alternate Universe Tim Guy: An Adventure

I was stocking drinks with Anthony (Donovan co-worker and generally cool guy, not Fearless Druid Leader who is also a cool guy) when Mike (the poor victim of Danny's subversion and lies) came up all of a sudden, grabbed my shoulder, and said that the answer to the question is "yes." Startled at the sudden human contact, I was completely bewildered? Question? What question? Ah, the bet. I had made the bet with Dan in complete confidence that I would win. Surely, I am not pretty! Surely, I would win $.20 from Dan at Mike's confirmation of this. However, I had not factored in Mike's polite nature and Dan's subversive lies. And of course, who would tell a big guy like Dan that his girlfriend isn't pretty?

I knew the whole thing was Dan's doing, his scheming put in motion to win the bet, when it was mentioned that many people I don't know also agree. This was the second bet in a week I'd lost to Dan, the first being my bet of $.10 that the PWG wouldn't come to pagan group on Wednesday. There was only one thing to be done: Dan and I would each write down a type of cereal, and if Anthony pulled the one either of us had written down, there would be a winner.

Uh, except that Anthony had just run off on break and Dan would hear none of it! There was only one thing to be done: scratchcard!

The scratchcard would, of course, be bought from the Tim Horton's/ Shell Station where works the Alternate Universe Tim Guy. A bit of background on the Tim Guy: he hassles customers who wish to exploit mistaken prices (as per the earlier entry), and asks them to do him favors which aren't favors to him, but advice he wishes to be followed (stay away from that kid on the bike!). He has the demeanor of a robot.

I walked up and Alternate Universe Tim Guy said, "Here comes trouble." Not having anything to say to that, I ordered. Tank. Hazelnut. Cream, sugar. One addiction-furthering beverage coming right up! Halfway through the Tank-assembling, Alternate Universe Tim Guy said, "I'm going to give you something new and different."

Me: (thinking Tim Guy was making a joke, I made a joke in turn) What, cream?
Tim Guy: Oh! Are you allergic to cream?
Me: No.
Tim Guy: Are you sure.
Me: No, I'm not allergic. What's this new and different thing?
Tim Guy: (does not answer, but then sets down a sample cup of pink liquid which looked like foamy Pepto-Bismol) It's raspberry.
Me: This is something new you're trying? What is it?
Tim Guy: It's like a hot smoothie. It's raspberry.
Me: (after taking a sip) So, it's basically a flavored steamed milk?
Tim: Yes, it's a cappucino without the cappucino.
Me: It's good. (Tim Guy sets down the coffee)
Tim Guy: Will that be all? (starts to ring up the coffee before I can answer)
Me: I think I'll get a few chocolate TimBits too. Six, please.
Tim Guy: (mutters something about his confused world and gets the TimBits) They're annoying to ring up, because I have to do it individually.
Me: You can't just use the @ key? Six at .13 each?
Tim Guy: No, because they won't let us do that because if we did... (mumbles off about what sound like nonexistent TimRules). Have a nice day.

The convenience store counter on the other side of the room didn't have a Crossword scratchcard, so I went to the Cumberland Farms down the street which, by the way, has gas for $2.81 per gallon. The two sales clerks had a miscommunication about the scratchcard. I scratched the card during Shoreline production, and came *thisclose* to winning as Dan (Shoreline exec editor, not loving subversive gambler boyfriend) told about the feminist poetry reading we went to and the Anchor guy who will hopefully mention Shoreline in his article.

I should ask Fearless Druid Leader Anthony if it is possible for a single person to be in a permanent Mercury retrograde.