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zorknapp (3598)

zorknapp
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http://www.pseudocertainty.com/

Journal of zorknapp (3598)

Tuesday January 24, 2006
08:43 AM

New blog site

Hello! I'm not using this site for my blog anymore. If you want to check out what I'm writing, go to:

http://zorky.blogspot.com/

Also, my new website, that looks like it was created in the mid 90's, is at:

http://www.dartmouth.edu/~mikelord/

Farewell!

Mike

Monday July 11, 2005
09:24 AM

Backstroke of the West

Friday July 30, 2004
01:32 PM

Squirrel Vs. Crow

So, I was walking around campus a few weeks ago, and saw a squirrel. Then, shortly after that, I saw some crows standing around. Because my mind may choose to wander down unfamiliar, or frankly, odd paths, I thought to myself:

"Hmm. Squirrels and crows are about the same size. I wonder which animal would win in a fight."

The crow has the advantage of flight, but are its beak and talons/claws enough to overcome the tenacity of an enraged squirrel? Could a crow pick up a squirrel, and drop it on a rock, like some sea-birds do to crabs?

Could the squirrel, on its own, climb a tree, and attack from the air a crow feeding on the ground?

Does the advantage go to the attacker, whichever creature goes first, or is there some inherent ability in one animal or the other that would lend it the ability to achieve victory no matter the situation?

At first, I know you're thinking, "What a stupid question." But, you're going to be lying awake tonight, or tomorrow, or sometime, thinking to yourself:

"A squirrel's teeth are sharp, but could they really get through the crow's feathers to the flesh below?"

"Yes, the crow can dive bomb a squirrel, but how sharp is that beak, really?"

Your thoughts, ideas, and strategies are encouraged. I think I have the beginnings of a book here.

Tuesday February 03, 2004
08:53 AM

Janet's boob

So, there's all this hoopla about Janet Jackson's boob being exposed during the Super Bowl.

Photos of boob here.

There is a lot of clamoring happening to have an "investigation" into this exposure, and of course, cries of the "children" being hurt by this.

All this during a game of pummeling, hitting, and focused violence. I'm sure that's not damaging to children at all, it's SPORTING!!!!

This is just another example of how much some Americans hate their own bodies. We can't see a breast on TV, because it'll cause some sort of moral decay.

I would gather that most humans on the planet have seen a naked breast at some point in their life, and yet somehow, society hasn't collapsed.

Strange, that.

Tuesday December 23, 2003
10:05 AM

The Tolkien "Dick" List

So, if you haven't gone to see Return of the King yet, you should climb out from under your rock, and go see it. Repeatedly.

I've seen it twice so far, once at Trilogy Tuesday, the day long screening of all three movies back on December 16th, and once this past weekend.

After watching the first movie again, I commented to jjohn, "Wow, Saurman's a dick!" From this simple comment, we decided to come up with a "Dick" list for the characters in the movies.

So, without further ado, here it is:

Saurman: Pure dick

Frodo: Can be dicky, because of the Ring.

Sam: Dick to Gollum

Smeagol/Gollum: Precious Dick

Sauron: The One True Dick.

Faramir: Was a dick, but got better.

Denethor: MEGA-dick, dick!

Aragorn: Not a dick, unless you're orc or uruk

Legolas: Not a dick.

Gimli: Dick to the elf.

Balrog: Ancient dick

Theoden: Dick through Saurman, but not a dick on his own.

Wormtongue: Tool of a dick

Boromir: Dick by proxy, (see Denethor).

Gandalf: not a dick, unless you screw with his fireworks or attract foes to his party

Sackville-Baggins: dicks

Old Gaffer: not a dick, but only liked by Sam

Galadriel: very nearly a Big Dick

Celeborn: useless dick

Elrond: not a dick, but not really helpful either

Treebeard: a dick to axe wielders

The Nazgul WitchKing: total dick

Tom Bombadil: missing dick

If you have anything you'd like to add, feel free.

Thursday December 11, 2003
03:55 PM

Blogging is serious business

There's an interesting discussion going on over in the comments section of jjohn's Journal about his use of the Markov blogger.

The discussion falls into two categories, to my mind:

1. MarkovBlog is a pain, because I, as a reader, may be led to a blog that has no real content.

2. People have their own choice about reading, and if the author chooses to put goop in his blog, that is his decision to make.

I'm totally fascinated by this discussion, because no one is forcing anyone to read any entry they do not want to read. Sure, if someone goes to jjohn's journal, and it's a MarkovBlog, and they didn't want to read it, it may waste a few seconds, but isn't blogging, whether you read or write one, at its core, kind of a waste of time anyway?

Don't get me wrong, I totally enjoy both reading and writing blogs, but is it an essential part of my day? No. Is it an essential part of anyone's day? Perhaps, but I would ask, what did these people do before blogs? Sure, something like reading blogs can become a positive part of someone's day, but does getting distracted by a randomly generated blog really detract from the enjoyment of blogging in general?

Part of the concern about this also seems to be that MarkovBlog may keep people from reading jjohn's blog as often as they would otherwise. To that I say, so what? Should this be a concern of jjohn's, that some people don't read his blog as often as they might?

This gets to a question about blogging. Is the act of blogging for the blogger, or for the readers? Which is prime? Is either prime? Should one be prime over the other? Personally, I view the blog as the domain of the writer, and the reader is secondary. The writer can use the blogging venue to develop thoughts, to post interesting ideas or links, or just randomly post whatever he or she feels like doing at the moment.

The reader has the freedom to put the book down at any time, as it were, and make a choice to go elsewhere for their blogging pleasure. It's not like there's not a proliferation of venues out there to read blogs.

Finally, I guess that whether you care about Markovblog one way or another comes down to a question of what your expectations are of the blogging experience. If you expect relevant content, or even simply logical sentences put together in a proper order, then a blog that has Markov as part of it are not for you. If you are looking for the random musing of a writer, along with goofy stuff, then I guess putting up with Markov is your kind of excitement.

All comments are of course, welcome. Not that I'll pay any attention to them, but who knows...

Monday November 10, 2003
01:53 PM

Long time, no write

You know, since I haven't written since the little black bear appeared on campus, my reading public has most likely been wondering if I had perhaps been EATEN by Mr. Bear.

I can safely say, FEAR NOT, my fellow humans! The bear did not make the treat out of me it may have wanted to. No bear bites on my bottom. Yet.

Since August, I've been both lazy and busy. Lazy about writing, and busy with work. The combonation of the two of course conspires to keep me away from blogging. This perhaps is not the Blog for America, but the blog for lazy bastards.

Hearing Mr. Jjohn's music, along with songs I played on quite a bit of time ago, has made me realize that I really haven't written anything musical in recent times. The creative bug just hasn't been biting. I have had opportunities to play music with other people. That has been fulfulling, but I need to do more. I have been picking up the bass more in the past few weeks than I have before then, in order to get the strings back under my fingers. There is just more pulling me away from the music now than in the past.

My hope is after my wedding in February, that I'll be able to devote more time to non-wedding related activities. Honestly though, the wedding hasn't been what is taking me away from being creative, it's just the lack of motivation to be creative.

I've been reading much more, and I'm beginning to get the writing bug again. However, I don't seem driven to do anything about it. My ideas are half formed, and I find it difficult to come up with the dramatic twists that would make certain ideas more compelling. More to think about with these ideas.

On a totally other subject, I have seen "Elf" and "Matrix Revolutions" over the weekend. "Elf" was much better than the third installment of the Matrix. The battle scenes in the third Matrix were tremendous, but the plot/characterizations left much to be desired. "Elf," on the other hand, was funny, entertaining, and although the sweet ending at the end was fairly predictable, it's a friggin' Christmas movie, it's supposed to have a happy ending.

Now, for happy endings, here comes "Return of the King"! Can I mention how much I'm salivating for this film. In fact, jjohn, my fiance, and myself, along with some others, will be attending the "Trilogy Tuesday" massive showing of "Fellowship," "The Two Towers," and "Return of the King" all in a row.

Some have asked me if seeing three movies, and long ones at that, in a row will be overwhelming. I say, "Yes, but it's supposed to be overwhelming!"

Alright, enough yakkin for now, I'll try to write on a daily basis for now, and I won't just whine about being uncreative.

Cheers!

Thursday August 14, 2003
01:10 PM

Excitement!!!!

So, today on campus after lunch, I'm walking to the main Residence Life office, and what is happening on campus?

We had a bear on campus!!!! A little black bear. And when I say little, I mean as compared to other bears. The beastie was probably as tall as me when it stood against a tree, and was bigger than the biggest dog out there.

I was excited, as I had heard stories of different wild creatures on campus, but hadn't seen any. Last summer, there was a moose running around, and I missed it! But now, I can safely say that I encountered a real bear, although at a distance.

My hope is that they tranquilized the bear, and can bring it back into the wilds of NH, but I don't know what procedure is. I'll keep people updated as to the status of the bear.

Friday August 08, 2003
01:55 PM

About damn time!

It's been a few weeks since the last entry for me in this journal. I could claim busyness at work, but let's be honest, it really doesn't take much time at all to do these daily blogs. I'm just inherently lazy about writing, and I'm coming to terms with that.

There, I've come to terms with it now.

Anyway, since my last installment, I've continued to get more settled into the new apartment with my fiancee, we've done some wedding registry work, and I've seen a couple good/middling/bad movies. They break down thusly:

Terminator 3: Better than I thought it would be. The ending isn't as happy as it could have been, which is a good thing. It was a surprisingly satisfying film, perhaps because my expectations were so low.

Tomb Raider 2: A dopey movie, that had no real purpose other than to show off that Angelina Jolie can act badly, even with an Academy Award to her name. I know it's not to be taken seriously, but it just wasn't that believable, much like a bad James Bond movie.

Johnny English: Fun, although a bit thin on the plot. The movie also shows that even the cultured English think getting rained on by poo is funny.

American Wedding: Another surprise for me. Very funny, in a sick/crude way. I enjoyed every minute of it, although I thought the jokes could have been tied together with a plot that made a bit more sense. But hey, what do I know...

On the music front, I received my copy of Peter Gabriel's Encore Series from the Mansfield, MA show, which I attended with my fiancee and jjohn. A cool show, and it's even cooler to have a great clean copy of the audio from the show. What I would like to see in the future is DVD's of shows like this, since most shows at summer sheds like Great Woods/Tweeter Center have cameras running for the punters on the lawn. Can it be that much harder getting the video recorded of a show like this, along with the audio? Perhaps some techies out there can correct me on this.

Can I also mention that one of the joys of doing this blog here, as a "non-techie," is reading blogs like jjohn's, where I hear about these big issues in the computer programming world that I wouldn't even know existed if it weren't for me coming here to check out blogs every day (even if I don't write as much as I should).

I also know that I really should put more links in here than I do, but that turns too much into work for me. I only do it in instances where there's a real need for it. If someone wants to look up the Peter Gabriel Encore Series, they can google it themselves, that's what I say!

My work now is consisting of a lot of writing, in order to generate a manual for our office, along with preparing for our student staff training in September. Busy, but not hectic.

That's all for now.

Tally Ho!

Wednesday July 16, 2003
08:32 AM

Back in town...

Hello all! I have returned from a week's vacation on Martha's Vineyard, and from moving apartments. Pardon my absence in this time, I'm sure you were all wondering where I was.

I've decided that I don't really mind packing, or unpacking. It's the physical act of moving boxes and other things that I don't really like. Fortunately, the college had some movers who were able to transport most of my really heavy pieces of furniture, along with all the boxed books, cd's, dvd's, and various sundry items. Now, the unpacking begins.

I enjoy not labeling the boxes, because then it's like your birthday every time you open a box!

"Wow, I didn't know I would get a box of CD's! And I like all of them!"

It's a small joy, but I'll take what I can get...

Martha's Vineyard was tremendously enjoyable, in a very relaxing kind of way. The great thing about going to MV is that if the weather is great, you can do a certain set of fun things, and if it's not, you can do something else that is equally as fun, just different.

I got a sunburn on the beach, went out to eat quite a bit, wandered around Oak Bluffs, Edgartown, and some other locations, ate, went to Chappaquiddick (I probably spelled that wrong), and just generally relaxed.

My dad and stepmother rented a house off of Old County Road, and the group was myself, those two, and my stepsister with her husband. My fiance joined us on Friday for the weekend, as she had to work during the week.

The friends of the family who used to own a house on the island now own a 55 foot yacht, which we visited often. It was a great boat, and I like sitting on the water in something like that, even if we're just tied up to the dock. There's something romantic about being on the water.

Now, it's back to the grind of work. Not that it's really bad, but it is work. I have to pack up my office belongings to move to my new work area, but I won't be totally moved until next week. There's no rush to move, as we haven't hired someone for my old position yet.

More soon, once more happens.