Sunday, September 26, 2004

Last Wednesday, tried hookah for the first time at Adams & Morgan. Yassine told me it wouldn't get us high but I could've sworn I felt something.

Last Friday, when I was driving to Giant (supermarket) to buy a bottle of wine for a wine 'n cheese party, I saw fireworks over the horizons. Nope, I wasn't hallucinating, there was really a full-fledged display worthy of the 4th of July over near Catholic University. Don't ask me why. And the party, gotta say wine's dangerous at a crowded deaf party. Flying hands = splashing wine. Pity on the guys who didn't heed the rule of wearing only dark clothes at those parties. Kudos to Dina and Svenna for being good hostesses.

Yesterday was a night of strange exchanges and I'll leave it at that.

Today, kicked asses in flag football. We won something like 49-6. Maybe 42-6. I lost track of our scoring, to be honest. We're coming together, baby.

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Last night, a friend warned me the karaoke was a dud so I steered to a cheesy house party instead. I found Eric wearing a Santa hat and a latex glove. I just knew what to do. Pat and I whisked a froshie to the room Eric was in and told him to stand in a corner, with his back to us. He complied. We revealed to him that he was to undergo a cavity search. Cue in Eric, all 6-1 and 230 lbs of him, looming over him menacingly with the rubber gloved hand. Pat and I restrained the froshie for a few seconds. Yeah, he got pretty scared. But after we let him go and he scrambled away, he returned to us looking confused and strangely gleeful.

We all are fond of him and have agreed to adopt him as our pet. It'll be official next time we see him. Nothing he can do about it.

Saturday, September 18, 2004

I'm reading a book called "The 80/20 Principle". Its basic thrust is that it's pretty much an universal law that 20% of anything determines 80% of the outcome, therefore it's wise to pick your spots and focus your attention to that 20% instead of spreading it all over.

The point of this post is that the writer studied at Oxford and when he was a freshman, a tutor advised him not to bother showing up for lectures since professors merely repeat what's written in the textbooks. That'd save a lot of time since it takes less time to read something than to hear about it. Furthermore, to avoid being overwhelmed by reading demands, he should just read the conclusion first then the introduction then skim through the material for any interesting bits. There was no homework- all grades at Oxford are based on final exams. He heeded the tutor's advice, breezed through his college years with ample free time and graduated with honors.

I got excited then remembered this method wouldn't work at Gallaudet, what with mandatory attendance and homework.

So I'm curious, among you who've gone to other colleges- KB at an university in Ireland, Michelle at RIT, etc...are the policies of most classes anything like Oxford's?

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Yesterday, crept closer to finishing that damn movie. Chris and I went to a bar in Greenbelt to shoot the opening scene. Once again, friendly strangers hounded us. If you read my blog from last May, you know a couple of Redskin fanatics compulsively high-fived us and promised us free tickets. This time, a black guy sitting next to Chris asked him if he knew NTID at RIT. Chris himself is a RIT alum. The guy was tickled pink- he's a physics professor at RIT, in town to do some business with NASA (one of their 3 bases is in Greenbelt). At one point, he, yes, high-fived Chris. Chris says there's always a special bond among people at RIT. Ha he ho. The prof eventually talked to me. He said he was from Rwanda and was in a refugee camp in Uganda. Chris suspected that he was gay. If he's right, I've reached yet another milestone: I met the only living gay African ex-refugee physics professor. What next?

Monday, September 13, 2004

Last Saturday night, I was joking to a coupla guys about something. One of them abruptly got up and ran to the bathroom. Somebody was like "OMG he barfed on the floor." I looked down and saw the poor dude's dinner. The guy came back, grinned at me and said, "Thanks a lot." Turned out he was laughing a bit too hard. I felt humbled and honored. After all, not everyone can say their humor's vomit-inducing ^__^

Ever since I mentioned that I was bored by single Gally chicks, some fairly interesting ones suddenly came out of the woodwork. Emphasis on "fairly" :)

Oh yeah, last week, finally figured out a plan for my education that makes sense.

Sunday, September 12, 2004

My flag football team played the season opener this afternoon. We lost (the opponents scored the winning TD in the final minute). It was a miracle that it was a close game. We didn't practice at all so nobody knew their roles. It was choatic at first, a bunch of guys screaming and yelling at each other. We didn't have a coach. But things calmed down as the game went on. We actually could've won the game if a teammate didn't drop a sure TD pass. After the game, we told him he'd have to buy each of us a bottle of beer if he dropped a pass again.

I was also surprised at how out of shape I was. I was panting after only few plays. Paying the price of a relatively sedentary summer *shaking head* A friend and I've agreed to play racquetball 3 times a week starting this week.

We play Kappa Gamma next Sunday.

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Now for Bush...just a few samples from this year alone:

""Too many good docs are getting out of the business. Too many OB-GYNs aren't able to practice their love with women all across this country." —George W. Bush, Poplar Bluff, Mo., Sept. 6, 2004

"I hope you leave here and walk out and say, 'What did he say?'" —George W. Bush, Beaverton, Oregon, Aug. 13, 2004

"Let me put it to you bluntly. In a changing world, we want more people to have control over your own life." —George W. Bush, Annandale, Va, Aug. 9, 2004

"As you know, we don't have relationships with Iran. I mean, that's — ever since the late '70s, we have no contacts with them, and we've totally sanctioned them. In other words, there's no sanctions — you can't — we're out of sanctions." —George W. Bush, Annandale, Va, Aug. 9, 2004

"Had we to do it over again, we would look at the consequences of catastrophic success, being so successful so fast that an enemy that should have surrendered or been done in escaped and lived to fight another day." —George W. Bush, telling Time magazine that he underestimated the Iraqi resistance

"Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we." —George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., Aug. 5, 2004

"I want to thank my friend, Senator Bill Frist, for joining us today. You're doing a heck of a job. You cut your teeth here, right? That's where you started practicing? That's good. He married a Texas girl, I want you to know. Karyn is with us. A West Texas girl, just like me." —George W. Bush, Nashville, Tenn., May 27, 2004

"I'm honored to shake the hand of a brave Iraqi citizen who had his hand cut off by Saddam Hussein." —George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., May 25, 2004

"The march to war hurt the economy. Laura reminded me a while ago that remember what was on the TV screens —  she calls me, 'George W.' — 'George W.' I call her, 'First Lady.' No, anyway — she said, we said, march to war on our TV screen." —George W. Bush, Bay Shore, New York, Mar. 11, 2004

"God loves you, and I love you. And you can count on both of us as a powerful message that people who wonder about their future can hear." —George W. Bush, Los Angeles, Calif., March 3, 2004

"More Muslims have died at the hands of killers than — I say more Muslims — a lot of Muslims have died — I don't know the exact count — at Istanbul. Look at these different places around the world where there's been tremendous death and destruction because killers kill." —George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., Jan. 29, 2004

"Just remember it's the birds that's supposed to suffer, not the hunter." —George W. Bush, advising quail hunter and New Mexico Sen. Pete Domenici, Roswell, N.M., Jan. 22, 2004

"I was a prisoner too, but for bad reasons." —George W. Bush, to Argentine President Nestor Kirchner, on being told that all but one of the Argentine delegates to a summit meeting were imprisoned during the military dictatorship, Monterrey, Mexico, Jan. 13, 2004

Monday, September 06, 2004

Donald Rumsfeld: "I would not say that the future is necessarily less predictable than the past- I think the past was not predictable when it started."

No shit.

Thursday, September 02, 2004

This is my response to Elisa. It'll be my last rant on politics for a while.

I'm focusing on economics because it has such a huge impact on the society. Other issues? I'll just say: whenever possible, let people be. You're against abortion because you're a Christian? Fine, then don't go through one. As for the other people, wouldn't your faith say "judge not"? Wouldn't it be a matter between them and God?

I think ideally the American government should be somewhere between the way it is now and socialism. Call me a pro-business liberal. Let me ask you, tho- what's so bad about socialism anyway? I'm not some beatnik from Berkeley who lives in a Marxist fantasy world. I've invested in stocks since I was a college freshman. I have some business plans. But one thing for sure, if I became wealthy, I would be more than happy to give up a chunk if it'd make people's lives better. I'm serious. Who needs that 254th yacht?

I used to be a "fiscal conservative". That was before few things happened: 1) I visited socialist nations and saw how refreshing the absence of poverty and crime was; 2) saw that businesses do prosper there (the biggest argument against socialism is that it's bad for biz); 3) realized that not everyone has equal opportunities. Lots of poor people do work hard- you've heard of mothers laboring at 2 jobs 16 hrs a day to feed her kids. She's poor because she's powerless to change the structure in which the CEO's pay's 200 times higher (he needs that 254th yacht, goddammit) than his employees. Why didn't that poor mother go to college? She might not afford it. She might not be aware of the opportunities. She might not be smart enough. Get over it. And what about her kids? Would it be their fault that they grew up in poverty? Growing up in poverty preceipiates a culture of poverty that isn't easy to escape, as evident in real life. It's a vicious cycle.

There's a few analogies of the leftist economy dreamed up by conservatives to bash it. I'm sure you've read at least one version, such as that girl getting a gpa of 4.0 being asked to give up a full point for a lazy 2.0 friend so they'd both get 3.0. Absurd. Nobody's talking about exactly equal pay.

And a reality that has nothing to do with school grades: it takes money (and connections) to make money. If there were a rich man and a middle class man, and both of them had an identical business idea. Can you say with a straight face that their chances of striking gold with the idea are remotely equal?

Mind you, I'm not advocating that the government toss out money to people like a favorite uncle. How about cutting down the minimum wage to like $2/hour so more workers can be hired, then the government pays the worker $5 for every $2 he/she makes? It's a win-win situation. Less burden on corporations, workers get paid more. People would have more incentive to find work. And with higher minimum pay, urban teenagers would be less tempted to deal drugs.

"Trickle down" economics...debunked by history. What about the reverse? Think about it: if wealth's slightly redistributed, the poor'd have more money to spend and that'd help bizs too. Call that the "trickle up" effect :)