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+ Regroup
Friday, August 29, 2003 ~ 05:04 p.m.

I'm headed to Nashville for the weekend. Should be back sometime Monday afternoon.

If you haven't seen it already, check out Engrish.com's Controversy Week.

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+ I have a bad feeling about this...
Wednesday, August 27, 2003 ~ 10:55 a.m.

Definitely time to start sending out the resumes. Our branch manager just stuck his head in my office where my boss and I were talking and told us that the regional guys came in today and fired him. This comes at the same time our senior engineer is bailing out and not too long after they fired the CMT manager. Everyone higher up is on their way out the door and no one knows the reasons why. My boss has no idea what's going on, but now everyone's on edge. We don't know the whole story, so we're trying not to speculate and/or prophesy doom, but we all know it's not good. Eeee.

I just hope our office stays open until I graduate. Paychecks are kind of necessary and all.

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+ Don't hold back...
Tuesday, August 26, 2003 ~ 11:50 a.m.

All I can say is.....DAMN. That's one of the harshest condemnations of our dear Shrub-in-Chief I have yet to read. "...nakedly self-aggrandizing...contemptuous of America, contemptuous of Americans, contemptuous of his detractors, contemptuous of his supporters..."

In other news, finally a partial victory against "reverse" discrimination.

Current Music: 'Away From Me' - Evanescence

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+ Prozac in the water supply???
Monday, August 25, 2003 ~ 04:18 p.m.

This past weekend was great! Despite severe attacks of clumsiness, I survived (multiple times) Saturday morning with no more than cuts and brusies, and really enjoyed the canoe trip. Russell's party Saturday night was a lot of fun. Russ's lesson of the year: never consume any alcoholic beverage whose title references the Apocalypse. Once I managed to get moving Sunday morning, I met up with Jessica to watch Mulan and eat the wonderful cake she made (because she's a kickass friend). I fully intended to go home after, but somehow ended up at Pizza Hut with the same crowd from Saturday. After dinner, we decided to go swimming back at Justin's place, so I didn't drag myself home until midnight or so. Yeah, a little late for a school night and all, but it was worth it to actually see my friends! I hadn't realized how tired I was getting of being antisocial. ;-)

I only have one class on Monday and Wednesday and it's Sociology. I went in expecting it to be a repeat performance of Lit, but to my suprise I actually enjoyed it! The professor is...well, she's funny and I think I like her style of teaching. She likes to argue! We're going to get along well, I do believe.

All in all, everything is just awesome right now. Life is good. *nod* Let's hope the entire week just continues on just the same.

Oh, and I love you, EB!! *BIIIIIG hug*

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+ Retarded
Friday, August 22, 2003 ~ 11:33 a.m.

Some people will pick a fight about anything.

Now, as far as I can tell, the whole argument to remove the Ten Commandments from the Alabama State Judicial Building is based on "separation of church and state." This argument is inherently stupid and I'm not exactly sure why it hasn't been dismissed out of hand.

Separation of church and state, to me, draws the line at allowing laws to be made based on religious opinions. It prevents a certain religion or group from gaining a legal advantage or preference over another religious group. It blocks religious opinions from determining how someone not of that religion or that opinion should live their lives. It is a policy that ensures fair education, fair employment opportunities, and equal justice.

Explain to me again how a chunk of stone in front of a building is supposed to interfere with that?

If that monument was a sculpture of mating spider monkeys, it would have precisely the same effect on our law-making process. That is to say, none. The only effect it has is on our precious sensibilities. Uh oh...someone's offended.

The order to remove the Ten Commandments was given because someone got their toes stepped on by the mention of God. Oh whine. Too bad no one has the right to not be offended. So what if it's a religious monument at a government building? Religion has just as much place in our country as anything else - to deny its existence is to deny reality. Monuments to our various religions belong just as much as monuments to war heroes and historical figures.

Given that 80% of Alabama citizens most likely either want the monument to stay or really don't care one way or the other, I say let it stay. It's not hurting anything but a few feelings. If some people don't like it, they can petition to have their own monument made and placed. Inclusion instead of exclusion.

The way I see it, every time someone makes a concession to be PC, we lose a little more of what makes us unique. Instead of accepting everyone, we're forcing everyone to hide their identities, in hopes that some nutter somewhere won't be offended that someone else dare be different from them. We go on and on about what a tolerant nation we are, when really what we practice is smothering intolerance. You will be assimiliated.

But all that aside, don't we have better things we could be arguing over? I mean, just last month, the government was talking about a constitutional amendment to effectively ban gay marriage. That's a decision that is obviously based on religion opinion alone! Why isn't there a massive front-page fight going on over that?

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+ Current Project
Thursday, August 21, 2003 ~ 09:44 a.m.

Our new office in Johnson is going to be really nice once we get done with it. When I got there at 3 yesterday, it was half empty with all of our junk piled up against one wall. Now it's actually organized. The trophies have been cleaned and put on the shelves and the plaques have been hung on the walls. I'm sorting through tons of old pictures and we're going to hang old team photos, once I get them all sorted out. Mo and I found a $20 desk at the thrift store to use for the computer and today we're going back to pick up a sofa. With a few lamps, a set of storage drawers, and a coffee pot, we'll be set for the year. We'll have a nice place to hold officer's meetings, work on the design paper and presentation, and pass out. Best part is, I don't think this side of Johnson has rats!

Allergies are still kicking my ass. Ahh, Huntsville in August. If the humidity doesn't kill you, the pollen will. Or at least you'll wish it had. Of course, it probably doesn't help to go diving into dusty 10-year-old boxes. Still, I've found some really funny pictures!

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+ Would I do such a thing?
Wednesday, August 20, 2003 ~ 01:42 p.m.

School starts Monday. My last semester at UAH. It's kind of weird to say that, because it doesn't feel like I've been here four years. I have to go home and work on my cover letter tonight because I'm going to start dropping off resumes next week. Eeek.

Today is Jackie's birthday, so I brought him some cupcakes when I came back from lunch. Mmm...sprinkles. Of course, now I'm halfway into sugar shock, as are the rest of the lab rats.

"Uhm, Sarah, is there anything in this cupcake that will render me unable to reproduce?"


"I mean anything
you put in it."

"Greg, I'm starting to think you don't trust me."

I'm getting pretty motivated about the upcoming year for ASCE. We have a good set of officers this time around, so I'm actually able to delegate tasks! It's so wonderful. I have a really good feeling about this year. :-)

Current Music: 'Haunted' - Poe

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+ Lemmings Unite
Tuesday, August 19, 2003 ~ 01:48 p.m.

Edit: Due to complaints, I have revised my hell into a more understandable format.

Circle I Limbo

Mike, Russell
Circle II Whirling in a Dark & Stormy Wind

Circle III Mud, Rain, Cold, Hail & Snow

Militant Vegans
Circle IV Rolling Weights

Circle V Stuck in Mud, Mangled

River Styx

Circle VI Buried for Eternity

River Phlegyas

Circle VII Burning Sands

PETA Members
Circle IIX Immersed in Excrement

Parents who bring squalling brats to R-rated movies
Circle IX Frozen in Ice

Design your own hell

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+ Llamaturgy
Monday, August 18, 2003 ~ 08:49 a.m.

Ahah! According to Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary, the plural of platypus can be either platypuses OR platypi! I do love the word platypi.

Last night I talked to Colleen for the first time in YEARS. It was awesome!!! She hasn't changed! School starts today in Hendersonville and she's corrupting teaching third grade now. She was headed to bed, so we didn't get to talk long, but it was great to catch up at least a little. I bet she's an awesome teacher. *grin*

So Saturday turned out to actually be kind of fun. I had my doubts when the Changeling storytellers showed up without anything resembling a plot. We were bored for a while, but once we decided to screw being in character, things got a lot more interesting. There was dancing, and hulahooping, and whacking each other with large padded bats. And pixi sticks. The Cam game wasn't so much fun, but I met a lot of new and interesting people. My favorites were the Latter Day Setites. They even gave us a sermon, complete with readings from the Book of Llama.

As a result of spending the entire day (9 AM - 4 AM) around people who are constantly wreathed by a dense cloud of cigarette smoke, along with the sudden ragweed bloom here in Huntsville, my sinuses have seen fit to issue an ultimatum. They can't do much about the smoke, but as for the ragweed....either the Allegra dosage will be increased or the throat gets it. They say if I ever want to eat something besides jello again, I'd best deliver the antihistamines, and they've already begun torturing the hostage. Not being particularly fond of jello, I have decided to acquiesce to their demands and we are currently in negotiations. I'm feeling a little better already.

My last week of (relative) freedom before school starts back. I'd better enjoy it. ;-)

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+ Please let me go home
Friday, August 15, 2003 ~ 01:46 p.m.

Good citzens, I have dire news. The cause of last night's blackout has finally been determined. Over 20,000 fried, furry bodies were discovered this morning on transformers throughout the affected area. It appears that it was a mass attack organized by the terrorist group Rodentia Resistiva. At 4:11 PM eastern time, thousands of squirrels lept onto thousands of transformers, causing a massive power surge and crippling human society.

Damn squirrels.

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+ So what you meant to say was...
Friday, August 15, 2003 ~ 08:48 a.m.

Executive Order 13303. Difficult to read. But I think a rough translation of the legalese goes something like this:

I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, find that the threat of legal action against the Development Fund for Iraq or anyone who pumps or sells Iraqi SUV juice obstructs our noble goal of ass-raping the Iraqi people for their own good. This obstruction is a direct threat to our national security and foreign policy, so I'm going to declare a national emergency, all the better to sneak this in while the rest of you are freaking out.

I hereby order:

Section 1: Unless I say otherwise, every legal contract and/or legal action pertaining to the Development Fund for Iraq or US Iraqi oil interests is null and void. If you want the revenues from oil to go to the Iraqi people, there's nothing you can do about it. So there, nyah.

Section 2: Oh, and as far as my daddy's EO 12722 goes, it no longer applies to oil.

It's good to be the king.


May 22, 2003.

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+ Swamped
Thursday, August 14, 2003 ~ 11:51 a.m.

Egads, it's been a busy day! I managed to meet all the deadlines my boss set, but things were pretty frantic there for a while. There's still a gazillion things left to do, but I'm taking a break.

ASCE got a pretty angry letter from Florida Tech yesterday. I haven't quite decided how to respond. It's unfortunate that they're so hostile, but I can kind of understand. After all, they lied, they cheated, and then they got caught. And then we posted the gory details on our website. Yeah, I can see how they might be a little irritated. Not that I care. They should have thought of that first. *shrug* But I have to be polite - school image and all that.

The big Changeling event is this Saturday at the dance studio. I have no idea what I'll be doing, wearing, or helping with. Maybe I should do nothing, go naked, and eat all the cheetos.

Back to work.

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+ Something to Ponder
Wednesday, August 13, 2003 ~ 03:19 p.m.

Wrap your brain around this: "New Theory of Time Rattles Halls of Science"

You know, I just love the Henson creature shop. Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal and Farscape, oh my!

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+ Interesting...
Wednesday, August 13, 2003 ~ 11:02 a.m.

This article on UAVs caught my eye this morning. I don't really have an opinion on it, I just thought it was interesting. And a little creepy.

"Experts at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility break down UAVs into seven classes:

Tactical - the catch-all for the ubiquitous 50-pound to 1,000-pound deployable air vehicle;
Endurance - capable of extended duration flight, typically 24 hours or greater;
Vertical Takeoff and Landing (VTOL) - typically rotary wing;
Man Portable - light enough to be back-packed by an individual and launched by hand-throwing or sling-shot mechanism and are larger than micro air vehicles;
Optionally Piloted Vehicle (OPV) - capable of piloted or unpiloted flight operations, typically an adaptation of a general aviation aircraft;
Micro Air Vehicle (MAV) - defined as having no dimension larger than 6-inches;
Research - developed for specific investigations, typically with no production intent."

"Yet another cloak-and-dagger craft, Miller suggests, may already be airborne and operational. This "Wild-Weasel" of a stealthy vehicle is ideal for finding and eliminating enemy air defense systems. The unpiloted vehicle would be loaded with electronic warfare equipment to seek out enemy radars, then direct weapons to take out or suppress radar operations.

"I suspect that this has happened and something is in service," Miller said."

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+ Very Tuesday
Tuesday, August 12, 2003 ~ 10:31 a.m.

I'm in a very antagonistic mood today. Probably leftover rage from being woken up by my neighbors at two hours intervals, starting at 12 AM. I think it's probably a good think I don't own any type of projectile weapon.

So the highlight of the night was my sister calling me, not to chat, but to ask me why I'd told our parents about her boy having a kid. Good to hear from ya, EB. :-P Turns out I hadn't told them - see, they read both of our blogs and she brought up the subject on hers. But as we were talking, said boy walked in and she had to go. She maintains that, despite his baggage, he's really a very nice boy. *shrug* I don't know that he'll survive meeting the family, if last night was indicative of his sense of humor and/or wit. Our extended family thrives on sarcasm.

I ran for the first time in three months yesterday. Today, I hurt. But it's a good pain, right?

Factoid for the day: "Decimate means to destroy 10 percent of something. Obliterate means to destroy something completely." They're not synonymous. Oops.

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+ I'm cringing on the inside
Monday, August 11, 2003 ~ 11:27 a.m.


God Bless Save America

I keep getting this mental image of Cheney hunched over, cackling and rubbing his hands together in classic evil-overlord style.

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+ Sleep deprivation is the world's cheapest drug
Monday, August 11, 2003 ~ 09:47 a.m.

Either I a) spent last night sleepwalking or b) was abducted by aliens. Since I have no trouble sitting, I'll have to assume the former. I don't recall anything, but I'm fairly certain I didn't spend those eight hours actually sleeping. If I had, I'd be able to understand spoken English. Greg was asking me something just a few minutes ago and all I could do was stare at him blankly while my brain struggled to make sense of the strange noises emanating from his mouth.

Oooh, hunger. Why am I craving Chinese food at 10 in the morning???

Maybe I was abducted. Maybe I'm pregnant with an alien love child. I think I'll name it Grkkt and hope it doesn't take after its dad.

I felt awful yesterday. I called Jessica and had to give her some bad news that arrived in her mail. "Oh, your hamster's really sick? Had a tapeworm the length of four football fields? That's terrible. Well, just to make you feel worse, *insert bad news here*. Have a nice day!" Yeah. That's me, bearer of bad news and misery-enhancer extraordinaire.

Saturday I was trapped for four hours in near-silent sweltering misery, hitting a canoe with a hammer. We broke up the monotony by lighting pieces of foam on fire, but quit after realizing the gases released during combustion were probably going to result in the growth of extra limbs. Afterwards, we adjourned to Todd and Jackieís where we consumed hamburgers containing one-fourth of a cow, each. I actually had to rappel up mine and work my way from the top.

Todd leaves Wednesday for California/Hawaii/Colorado. I don't think he's ever coming back. He'll probably take up residence in Hawaii as a beach bum, meet some nice hula chick, learn to surf, and live happily ever after, while the rest of us spend our days slaving away in the freakish darkness that is Northern Alabama. Okay, maybe not, but that's what I'd do. Well, except for the nice hula chick part.

And I believe I've rambled enough. I'm going to go nurse my caffeine and pray that clarity can be found therein.

Current Music: 'Elsewhere' - Sarah McLachlan

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+ Monkey
Friday, August 8, 2003 ~ 02:44 p.m.

"I'll give you time to pray to your big, filthy monkey god before I food you." - Get Fuzzy

Boredom is a terrible thing. It leads to religious conversations with Jackie. I've found there's no debating with a southern Baptist. It's like hitting a brick wall. But it does help to pass the time.

Jeff, thanks for cheering me up at lunch. Have a good trip to Auburn.

Current Music: 'Dig Ophelia' - Rasputina

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+ Stuck here
Friday, August 8, 2003 ~ 09:02 a.m.

*sigh* I wish I didn't have a sense of responsibility. If I didn't have to help with the modal analysis thingy tomorrow, I'd just go to Auburn with everyone else. Much better than sitting here and being bored all weekend. Yeah. This is me, not being anti-social for once. What lousy timing.

It's Friday, it's payday, it's a happy day. So why do I want to kill something?

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+ Once in a blue moon...
Thursday, August 7, 2003 ~ 04:04 p.m.

Today has just been a phenomenal day. Wonderful. In fact, it almost worries me that everything's been so great. Surely there's got to be a catch.

One of the highlights of the day was when Brian hauled me into the conference room and told me that if I wanted it, they'd give me a full-time slot in environmental after I graduate. I told him that I was looking all over the place and that I'd let him know in November or so. But it's nice to know that a) they like me enough to create a full-time position just to keep me and b) I have a fall-back if for some reason I can't find another job come December. Not that it will pay very well, but at least it'd be something better than part-time to hold me over. He also wants me to recruit another student to help out in CMT, since Jackie worked out so well.

That and I finally found the business card a program manager from Foster Wheeler gave me a while back. Told me to call him when I started looking for jobs. So I will! :-)

And I'm just happy for no reason. I woke up this way. *shrug* Your guess is as good as mine.

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+ Quasi-Rant
Wednesday, August 6, 2003 ~ 10:39 a.m.

I have a few problems with the more conservative side of my Church, but this isn't one of them...if not quite for the same reasons. Honestly I don't care if my priest or bishop or canon is gay. I could care less if they like boys or girls, as long as they are a good and decent person.

However, we have a teeny tiny rule, one that applies to heterosexual clergy too: No sex out of wedlock. None. Period.

If you're married, it's cool, but no ring, then you're S.O.L. And I'm sorry, but no matter how much this newly ordained bishop loves his partner, they can't get married in our Church. Therefore, he should NOT have been confirmed as a bishop, or even ordained as a priest. Unfair? Yeah. But a rule is a rule. There are just some things you have to be willing to give up when you give yourself over to a higher calling, and extramarital humping is one of them.

I'm a cradle Episcopalian and I was raised in a reasonably high-church environment. I love Rite I and the old hymns. I was an acolyte for seven years and I'm a real stickler for tradition. But the thing that I love most about our Church is it's willingness to allow personal freedom of belief. We hold that someone's personal beliefs are a private matter and that the Church should seek to teach rather than criticize. So, people shouldn't hail Anglicans as a liberal group (hahahaha!) that's more advanced than other denominations just because it has gay clergy. Rather, it's just evidence that we're more tolerant of things we disagree with than the rest.

Even if the decision WAS inherently wrong.

"This body willfully confirming the election of a person sexually active outside of holy matrimony has departed from the historic faith and order of the Church of Jesus Christ," Duncan said. "This body has divided itself from millions of Anglican Christians around the world."

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+ Yet another useless quiz thingy!
Tuesday, August 5, 2003 ~ 02:36 p.m.

I AM: bored out of my mind
I WANT: telepathy
I HAVE: a strange outlook on life and $0.33 in change
I WISH: people were nicer to each other
I HATE: stupid people
I MISS: being kissed
I FEAR: spiders and TV evangelists
I HEAR: little voices?
I SEARCH: for the rum
I WONDER: what other people think
I LOVE: life in general and being outside in particular
I ACHE: because I canoed Saturday
I ALWAYS: hit the snooze button
I AM NOT: a goth, you motherf***ers
I DANCE: constantly, even without music
I SING: all the time, as long as no one's listening
I CRY: when things get overwhelming
I AM NOT ALWAYS: as happy as I act
I WRITE: in my little blogs
I WIN: debates
I LOSE: at rock-paper-scissors
I CONFUSE: left and right, unless Iím looking at my hands and making 'L's
I NEED: to make up my mind...and to win the lottery

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+ No need for any unrestrained yelling...
Tuesday, August 5, 2003 ~ 10:41 a.m.

This is some funny shit: 'Beat the Press' - The Daily Show

Go, watch, laugh.

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+ Don't shoot!
Tuesday, August 5, 2003 ~ 09:42 a.m.

Quote of the Day: "I do believe we need to go to a 24-hour fake news channel. Fox can't be the only fake news channel out there!" - Jon Stewart

My boss made a couple of rubber-band guns last night out of some cedar scraps he had lying around, and brought one into work today for all of us to play with. He's set himself up a nice little sniper's nest just inside the lab and is picking off everyone who comes through the door. *grin* You can come in, but it's gonna hurt.

Look, everyone! Jessica posted her monthly update! Now with comments. Oooooh.

At 2:30 this morning, my neighbors (and 10+ friends) decided it would be a good idea to stand around outside my window yapping at each other. This was okay, until they started yelling. I was hiding bloody mutilated corpses until 5:30 this morning! How unfair is that????

Okay, not really. But there was some rage. To be fair, they were appropriately contrite when I staggered outside and muttered something (hopefully in English) to the effect of "It's 3 AM, could you maybe NOT with the yelling?" At least I didn't tell them to die screaming. But still...I know none of them have to shoulder the burden of being productive citizens, but they could have some respect for those of us who have to be at work at 8 every morning. *bite scratch hiss*

Anyways, enough with the anger. Today is a happy day. I think. I'll let you know for sure in six hours or so.

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+ Thinking too much?
Monday, August 4, 2003 ~ 01:38 p.m.

I got a lot done this weekend, even with being gone all day Saturday. I still hurt everywhere from canoeing, which made Frisbee yesterday morning a more difficult proposition than usual. I hung out with Jeff and Jessica for most of the afternoon and afterwards managed to knock out everything I had on my to-do list. It was a pretty good weekend, all things considered.

Over the last two days, I also learned a lot about several people around me. It doesn't matter how long you know someone, they can still surprise you sometimes. I also had to reevaluate a lot of the assumptions I had made about one of my friends and her boyfriend. We got the chance to talk a lot on Saturday and I realized that I had judged the situation pretty poorly. I'm still concerned for her, but nowhere near as much. Suffice it to say, I have renewed confidence in her ability to make her own decisions in life without any input from the peanut gallery.

In three months, I'll be graduating and starting a new job. I'm not sure where I'll end up. Part of me wants to move away from Alabama and start over somewhere else. Another part is kind of afraid to do any such thing and really wants to stay here in Huntsville. I do have grad school to think about and right now I'm planning to take a few classes here and there over the next few years. It's all rather overwhelming at this point, especially since I'll be sending out resumes in a few weeks. Half excited at the new chances, half afraid of making the wrong decision. A whole lotta change comin' my way!

Current Music: 'Believe' - K's Choice

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+ Dead Tired
Saturday, August 2, 2003 ~ 11:56 p.m.

The canoe trip was awesome. There were rapids and waterfalls and malicious drowning attempts. There were epic battles and daring adventures. And copper-headed rattle moccasins. I currently cannot think of a single place on my body that is not (or will not be) in pain. It's wonderful. Afterwards, the survivors adjourned to Mo's parent's house, where his mother promptly served up a meal big enough to feed an entire Third World county. Their bull looked on as we grilled his best buddy, mooing piteously all the while. And it was goooood.

Today, no less than three very different people shared their views on anti-social downtime with me. It was...insightful. I'm pretty anti-social myself - I prefer staying home with a book or a sketchpad to going out pretty much 80% of the time. It was interesting that the subject should come up three times in one day, each in a different way, without my ever having prompted the topic.

Now I am a very tired, very worn out, and rather inexplicably sad girly. Tomorrow morning, I'm meeting Jess and Jeff for a sojourn to the park and Frisbee. Sleep is required.

Current Music: 'Eric's Song' - Vienna Teng

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+ Logic
Friday, August 1, 2003 ~ 01:36 p.m.

"Contrariwise," continued Tweedledee, "if it was so, it might be; and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn't, it ain't. That's logic."

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+ And dream I do
Friday, August 1, 2003 ~ 09:41 a.m.

I think I need a hug. :-(

That aside, here's further proof that rodents are organizing for a massive assult to cripple humanity.

Hopefully I'll cheer up in the next few hours. I'm supposed to meet Jessica and Jeff at the park this afternoon, then go to a movie with Jackie, Mo, and Todd tonight. I'm really looking forward to the canoe trip tomorrow (although not the 5 AM start it requires). At least it's Friday, right?

Current Music: 'Are You Happy Now' - Michelle Branch

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