Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy Old Year

Well, poop. It's raining hard and the gym is closed. No running for Overread today. I guess I'll have to end my streak at 3 days.

Anyway, I hope that everyone out there in blogland is having a wonderful New Year's Eve and will have a spectacular New Year.

May your plagiarizers be caught (it's too much to ask to not have them at all).
May your articles be accepted.
May your students be thoughtful, responsible and respectful.

May you find your family does care
May you care for your family

May you be respected and earn it.
May you always find an extra couple of dollars to buy yourself a treat

May you find a new Significant Other, or, if you already have the one you want, may you find him or her anew.

May you find the lottery numbers beforehand and email them to me

The best of the season to you and yours

Friday, December 30, 2005

Thursday, December 29, 2005

It's a Quiz, But It's a Dry Quiz.

Whew. Last application is done. Nothing left but the mailing, which I'll take care of tomorrow. So let's do some quizzing! Well, how about I do the quizzing and you folks do the answering? Ok, I think that'll work out for the best, too.

You guys rock! Last quiz, only #8 gave you problems.

Ozzy Osbourne, Crazy Train. Ok, ok, ok... maybe a bit obscure, but, hey, that's what I do.

Russian Violets kindly requested a little 80s lovin', so I've been tuned to a couple of 80s stations, but no promises :)

#1 -
She has a built in ability
To take everything she sees
And now it seems I’m falling, falling for her.
#2 -
Cause baby we’ll be
At the drive-in
In the old man’s ford
Behind the bushes
#3 -
Message keeps getting clearer, radio’s on and I’m moving round the place
I check myself out in the mirror I wanna change my clothes my hair my face
#4 -
will the wind ever remember
The names it has blow in the past?
And with this crutch, it’s old age, and it’s wisdom
It whispers no, this will be the last
#5 -
He went to fight wars
For his country and his king
Of his honor and his glory
The people would sing
#6 -
Sittin’ in the classroom thinkin’ it’s a drag
Listening to the teacher rap--just ain’t my bag
When two bells ring you know it’s my cue
Gonna meet the boys on floor number 2
#7 -
By now the fighting will be close at hand
Don’t believe the church and state
And everything they tell you
Believe in me, I’m with the high command
#8 - I can't believe we haven't done this one yet. Maybe we have...

When the mirror crashed I called you

And turned to hear you say

If only for today

I am unafraid
#9 -
So when you sense a change
Nothing feels the same
All your dreams are strange
#10 -
I bought a toothbrush, some toothpaste
A flannel for my face
Pajamas, a hairbrush
New shoes and a case
I said to my reflection
Let’s get out of this place

Sigh.

Is it really important that they know what I got in an 'Introduction to Computers' class in 1992? It was a C, ok? I'm embarrassed, but what can I say. Again, they're going to get the transcripts anyway, why do they need me to do the arcane algebraic gymnastics? Combining the GPA from my majors at the time, but only upper division classes, but including related fields, and drop all the pluses, but make the minuses count for half, and then take the numbers and add them together to find the true name of Baal. I guess, that part makes sense, anyway.

'Introduction to Computers?' hehe. Can you imagine trying to offer a class with a name like that? Maybe in elementary school...

One Ringie Dingie, Two Ringie Dingies

Ugh. 2 More applications done. 1 more to go. Of course, Snooty Snoot Snoot School (that I would desperately love to attend so that I might become snooty snoot snoot) wants a 'holy poop!' inducing $90 for the pleasure of being turned down.

Here's the other thing I don't understand. For many of these schools, why must we apply to both the department and the University? The Universities are usually on the ball. They've got the online applications down pretty well - some of them are really wonderful. So, why can't the University just CC the application material to the departments? Wouldn't that be more sane?

Unfortunately, the departments are usually, well... Off the ball. They want tree-killing reams of paper. No you can't email it, because it has to be on our circa 1973 form that we just can't seem to part with.

And ETS?! The geniuses behind that GRE/GMAT/SAT/FUBAR monopoly need one of Bush's Medals of Freedom the way that they've screwed things up. No online support whatever. You want to know your scores? Call in and talk to the computer. And give us ten bucks. If you want us to mail official copies of the scores to universities, we can do that, just call and talk to the computer for another half an hour. Make sure to have your university code numbers handy. For crying out loud, it's like using punch cards. Remind me to buy stock in those guys once I get out from under my crippling student loans, because, man, have they got a sweet scam going.

Ok. Whew. Breathe. In with the good, out with the bad. Ohm.... I think I shall eat an M />

I Can't Drive 55, Or Otherwise, Apparently.

So ok. About a year ago, I was driving a friend's car and got in an accident. My friend let her insurance lapse, and, because I don't have a car, I didn't have insurance. So, driving without insurance for me. The police didn't like that situation, and suspended my license for a year. Bummer, but no big. Well, the suspension term is up, so I thought I'd get my license back in case I wanted to rent a car and tool around a bit before class start up again. So, I go down to my friendly neighborhood DMV (luckily, it's within biking distance). The nice young gentleman at the counter told me that I'd need extra insurance before they'd issue me a license, and I'd have to carry the insurance until December of 2008.

Even if I don't have a car?

Yes, even if you don't have a car.

Is this special insurance expensive? (maybe if it's cheap, I could still do it)

[Laughter] Yeah, well, it's really expensive.

Well, crap.

I did a quick check and it seems that many places don't even offer the special flavor of insurance - makes sense really, since only high-risk drivers and sad-luck cases like myself would need it (and maybe I'm deluding myself into thinking that I'm not a high-risk driver as well). I even called one to get a quote just to see how expensive it would be and the guy was a bit flummoxed when I said I didn't have a car. "Oh, if you don't have a car, we can't do that."

Now, I know this is a car-nation, but yeesh.

So, no driving for Overread until 2009. I wonder if I'll even remember how by then. I hope I go to a school where I can bike.

Should I go get the ID card so I don't have to get frisked at the airport because of my expired driver's license?

Nother Short Run

5.96km - 32'28"

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Don't Fear The Linker

For those of you who have a music try-out service like Yahoo Unlimited, or those sad little 30 second teases from iTunes, check out John Allison (of the laugh-out-loud comic Scary-Go-Round) as one of the characters reviews his favorite 20 albums of 2005. He's only up to #9 (number nine... number nine...), but he updates M-F regularly. You can start here at #20. As those of you who do the quizzes know, I fear any music recorded after, say, 1987, but I have to admit enjoying quite a few of his choices. And, of course, Shelly's (the character) reviews are giggle-worthy as well.

Completely unrelated, but worth a click is the Twelve Days eBay.

Trying To Get Back On The Wagon

6.01 km - 32'23"

A bit of a run this morning. I think I should do this run more often instead of long runs less often. Let's see if that ever happens :)

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Quizzing 110%

I should first say that I think Camera Obscura should get bonus points again for knowing my favorite-est Christmas song, Baby It’s Cold Outside. Kudos!

I’ll leave off the reports from the last quiz, ‘cause let’s face it, you guys need to listen to more 60’s rock :)

#1 Finally, a realistic song

Well he turned and screamed at Linda Lu
And that’s the break I was looking for.
And you could hear me screaming a mile away
As I was headed out towards the door.

#2

I’ve seen your face before my friend
But I don’t know if you know who I am

#3

Early morning, April 4
Shot rings out in the Memphis sky

#4

I’ll wait in this place where the sun never shines;
Wait in this place where the shadows run from themselves.

#5

But my dreams
They aren't as empty
As my conscience seems to be

#6

No stop signs, speed limit,
Nobody's gonna slow me down
Like a wheel, gonna spin it,
Nobody's gonna mess me 'round

#7

I long to see the morning light
Coloring your face so dreamily.
So don’t you go and say goodbye,

#8

I’ve listened to preachers
I’ve listened to fools
I’ve watched all the dropouts
Who make their own rules

#9

Where are you going now my love?
Where will you be tomorrow?
Will you bring me happiness?
Will you bring me sorrow?

#10

I woke up in a Soho doorway
A policeman knew my name
He said "You can go sleep at home tonight
If you can get up and walk away"

#11

I’ve got to be free, free to face the life that’s ahead of me
On board, I’m the captain, so climb aboard
We’ll search for tomorrow on every shore

#12 can’t believe I haven’t used this one yet

I used her, she used me
But neither one cared
We were gettin’ our share

#13

Pretty mama come and take me by the hand
By the hand, take me by the hand pretty mama
Come and dance with your daddy all night long

#14

Is anybody out there? Anybody there?
Does anybody wonder? Anybody care?

#15

He say "One and one and one is three"
Got to be good looking 'cause he's so hard to see

Did I Mention...

..that before I left on my holiday jaunt that someone yoinked my headlight, blinkie red backlight and my speedometer off my bike?

Middle of the day too. Harumph... I had a lot of miles built up on that speedometer too...

Well, I guess since the application doesn't seem to be going tonight, maybe I shall build a UBERQUIZ...

Blorp*

Grr... in the middle of another PhD application (Why am I not done with these things already? Why not just go flip burgers somewhere?), the university in question's application web-site seems to have imploded. Is this the fates' way of warning me away?

*that's the sound of a Server imploding.

A Traditional Christmas


IMG_0391
Originally uploaded by Overread.
My brother and I like to take photos. Sometimes we see something on the side of the road and stop to take pictures even when we should be going somewhere.

Occasionally, we're late.

But we have fun :)

Can't We All Just Get Along?

You know how there are some students who really expect a certain grade?

Let's be careful out there.

Via The Little Professor (via Cliopatria)

Hunky-Dory Holiday Act I

Well, after a very long sleep last night, I think I'm pretty much recovered from the holiday weekend. I promised a recounting, so here goes:

I left Uni-town at night, and as you can tell by the earlier posts, things went downhill quickly. We were about 30 minutes late before even leaving the ground. The captain called it a 'balance problem.' I thought that there were only balance problems after the holidays. What with the eggnog and all. Anyway, I got into Big Enough To Be A Hub, But Not A Hub Airport (BEHBNAH) at about 11:42. My connecting flight was a 11:45 departure. From another terminal. I thought I might have a chance. Silly me. I jogged to the gate only to be told that I was too late. Did I see the plane still attached to the ramp? Maybe, Maybe not.

So a sauntered over to the 'So You've Missed Your Flight' counter and waited in line. There were already several people in front of me from another flight, and as I waited, I saw a long line of everyone from my flight line up behind me. It was so sad to look at the counter folks as they gradually found out another flight's worth of people with less than the proper holiday cheer had come to yell at them.

I eventually got to the front of the line and was given a seat on a flight at 6am that would set things right (although it would be through another city). They offered me three meal vouchers (although I'm not sure how you could eat breakfast for $5 at the airport. Maybe a coffee?), and a hotel for the night. I figured since the place would be leaving in a little under 6 hours at that point, I might as well stay in the airport, and they could give the hotel slot to someone else. It looked like they were going to need all the hotel slots they could find.

The problem was that the next flight was on another airline, so I had to go out of security and re-check in. No problem, I've go the time, right? Checking in was a bit problematic. My seat wasn't really reserved, so I got bumped. Next flight was at 8am. Ok, not so bad, but I did kind of wish I had taken that hotel room. On the plus side, I was going to get in at 4pm-ish rather than 6pm-ish. I've tried to figure out how that worked out, but I think it must be quantum physics. I never could get a hang of that.

So, I finally get my correct tickets. I go back to the terminal. Oops, wrong terminal. Back out and through security again. Oh, did I mention that if you fly with an expired driver's license, you get the nice line of 'sssss' on your ticket and get the extra bonus friendly security search? Did I also mention that my driver's license is expired? Not to worry, I don't drive, and in any case, the security people are usually really nice to me.

Well then. Back to the terminal in time to burn a $10 meal voucher on Burger King. Good grief. If it were my money I'd be humiliated to spend that much money there. When I got to my gate, it seemed clear that this had been an ugly day for a lot of folks. The chairs in airports are designed so that you can't lay down on them, but good old-fashioned American ingenuity seemed to smile on several of my sure-to-wake-up-with-cramps gatemates. One guy had piled bags up in two adjacent seats so he could lie down on top of them and the armrest in the middle. Well done, my friend, well done.

I close the more convenient option: walk walk walk, floor, floor, walk walk walk, floor. I guess I got about two hours of sleep all told, so I was top of form when the plane finally got there.

Oh, but of course when I got to my destination, my checked bag didn't make it with me. So we rushed off to get some supplies at the not-so-local Target. While looking over my possibilities, the baggage guy from the airport called to say that he had my bag! Woohoo! A not-so-local drive and my precious bag was in my hands.

So, despite the grief, it all ended up as well as could be expected. I didn't get to spend enough time with the family, but that's pretty standard. I never get enough time with them, maybe that's why I love them so much :)

I can't imagine why you've read this far, but since you have, I'll let you know that I'm going to put another holiday update up later. If you actually got this far this time, maybe I'll reach your boredom threshold with that one.

Sunday, December 25, 2005



Originally uploaded by Overread.

Christmas Lights

Mildly pixelated, but there ya go.



Christmas Update!

Just another quick note to say that I did eventually get where I needed to go. I had to take a couple extra flights and lost my baggage (got it back pretty quickly though). I felt so bad for he poor counter-folk at the airlines though. When my plane came in late, everyone on it missed their connections. And when we got to the 'so you missed your connections' line, there was already another flight full of people there who, well, let's say that they weren't imbued with the holiday spirit. I'm amazed how nasty and vulgar parents can be with children in tow. Sad.

Anyway, I'm with the family (with very notable exception - we miss you!) for the weekend, and life is good.

Have a wonderful Christmas, Hanukkah, or whatever holiday you do or don't celebrate!

And a happy New Year!

Photos - Now With Explanations!

Ok, well, it seems as though I need to learn how to use this new fangled technology thing. I tried to blog from the cell phone, but none of my comments came through. So, here are the comments for the two photos














Can you read this? It says "we support our troops in the middle east." first off, do we really need to be told this via the side of an airplane? Secondly, does this mean they don't support our troops in other places? Also of note, this patriotic plane was late. So, I missed my connection. So, I'm in an airport at 2:31am waiting for an 8-ish flight. On the fun side, I'm writing this on my cell.

This is the airport carpet on which I napped at about 2-3 in the morning on Christmas Eve day.