Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Rock Band...

...Is a must have for every person with any kind of game console that they make it for. Just so you know.

I bought it today (not exactly on a whim, but pretty close to it), and I must say it was totally worth however much it ended up costing. The only thing that stinks is I don't personally own a game console, so I had to buy it for D.J.'s Xbox360. However, I have been promised the Xbox over Christmas break since he has another one at home. In the meantime, I'll just pester him to death by never leaving his room.

Tag! You're It!

Tagged by my mom.

* Grab the nearest book.
* Open the book to page 56.
* Find the fifth sentence.
* Post the text of the next two to five sentences in your blog along with these instructions.
* Don’t dig for your favorite book, the cool book, or the intellectual one: pick the CLOSEST.
* Tag five other people to do the same.

"Why do we turn to literature, if not for arguments that tell us how to live? What does a work of literature offer us? Consider this comment by Salman Rushdie: 'The liveliness of literature lies in its exceptionality, in being the individual, idiosyncratic vision of one human being in which, to our delight and great surprise, we may find our own vision reflected.'"

It was actually a tie for closest book and the other book had a boring sentence, so I used this one. It's from one of my text books: Literature for Composition. The fact that it's close makes it sound like I'm a good student that actually reads my text books. Don't be misled.

Also, I'm cheating because I don't know anyone on here (other than Mrs. Jones) that hasn't been tagged already, so if you're reading this, consider yourself tagged.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Tiger Bait

I got back from Baton Rouge yesterday afternoon where I spent the weekend with some friends at LSU. We drove down to go watch our team lose to the tigers. We knew we were going to lose. It's inevitable. It's still fun to go to the games though, and it was nice to see some people I haven't seen in a while. I did take a picture of the scoreboard the one time we were ahead. It was not even two minutes into the first quarter and we promptly lost that lead as soon as LSU got the ball. Oh well...

Our tickets (due to one LSU friend waiting until the last minute to look for better ones) were in the nosebleed section. It is adequately named because on our way off campus, D.J. got an awful nosebleed. Naturally there was no Kleenex or anything resembling Kleenex in the car so he had to just pinch his nose and hope it stopped. He made me take pictures so he could pretend he got in a fight (guys are so weird). I'd put them on here, but they're pretty gory.

Before the game started, we had to walk to the library with our LSU hosts so they could print out their tickets. On the way there, we had to walk along a sidewalk that was lined on either side with tailgaters. We were assaulted on both sides with screams of "Tiger bait!" so we were glad when we finally made it into the library. However, it provided no relief. Immediately upon entering, we walked past a line of computers. One of the users turned around and whispered (we were in the library afterall), "Tiger bait." He then proceeded to follow us to a different part of the library and ask us, none too politely, what on earth we were doing in the library because we really didn't have an excuse. I mean, we couldn't possibly be studying. Our friends came to the rescue (the stalker hadn't realized they were there) and explained that we were with them. The guy walked off sheepishly. While I didn't really mind his curiosity, what kind of a person follows someone through the library just to find out what they're doing? For all he knew, we could be LSU students that just happen to be State fans. Or we could be hot. The library is air conditioned. Or we could be with friends (which we were). He had no business telling us that we had no business being where we were. The nerve of some people!

Anyway, I have good news. We got our math projects (the one from the previous post) back today. My partner and I got full credit on the spherical lock problem, even though I know we didn't do it completely right. You couldn't tell from the print out of the graph though, and apparently the teacher didn't look closely at the commands we typed in. Also, on the problem about launching projectiles from a tower on a hill, we were completely off, but instead of giving us no credit, he walked us through the problem, emailed a version of the walk through to us, and is giving us until Friday to rework it. What did I tell you about his grading technique? I love this teacher!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Brain Aches

I just spent the majority of my day sitting in front of a computer screen trying to do a math project on an absolutely ridiculous program known as Mathematica. Actually, the program itself is pretty cool, but neither my partner nor I really knew what on Earth we were doing. We were given a packet of problems to work and basically set loose to work them how we pleased. The first several problems were pretty straight forward, but the second to last was just a series of 3D graphs of what they called a spherical lock. Basically it was two domes that we had to animate to close simultaneously, one right outside the other. No numbers or anything. We were just given the pictures and told to replicate them. We looked up the equation for a sphere (hooray for Wikipedia!) and then cut the intervals in half to make our domes. Now the problem was how to animate them. We tried about a million different things until suddenly I stumbled upon a way to combine 4 different half domes to get the 2 domes we needed. The only problem was, they didn't combine into 2 domes until halfway through the animation. To make it look like we had it right all along, we just changed the animation so it would start in the middle and go to the end, so no one ever has to know that we didn't really do it right. Our teacher will probably realize this, but he's more of a set you free then when you inevitably do it wrong, he'll just explain it and give you an A for effort kind of teacher.

The problem after the lock problem was all about launching projectiles off of a tower on a hill, and I won't even get into that. We stared at it until we got kicked out of the computer lab in the math building because they were closing. We relocated to the library and stared at it some more. Finally, we made up some stuff that seemed at least halfway right and called it a day. We have one more Mathematica project this semester. I am looking forward to the future when Mathematica will be a thing of my past.

P.S. I was trying to find a picture similar to the spherical lock we were animating to give you a better idea of what we were doing, but instead of locks coming up in Google images when I typed in spherical lock, this picture came up instead. Go figure.

P.P.S. What were they thinking?

P.P.P.S. I wonder how much that cost...

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

A Cowbell for Colin

Colin Powell was at State tonight to speak in a leadership conference. Some friends of mine were going to get bonus points for a class, so I decided I would go as well. I mean, how many times in your life do you get to see Colin Powell in person? (I suppose if you're the president or a foreign diplomat or his wife that answer would be a lot, but forget about all those people.) Before he began his speech our interim president stepped up to the podium and said (in the most southern southern drawl I've ever heard), "How many of y'all out there are Bulldawgs?" I don't suppose I've ever actually seen this guy before, but he is a perfect president for our school. He could be an actual bulldog. If Mississippi State was Hogwarts, he would be an Animagus, and his animal would be a bulldog. If you don't believe me, just look at him. He even has a slightly bulldogish name: Vance.

After our Animagus president spoke, Sylvester spoke, and then it was time for the man of the hour: General Colin L. Powell, himself. I was afraid that he was going to be a little dull, and the most I would get out of it would be the ability to say I'd seen him in person. I was completely wrong. He's a pretty funny guy. He said the thing he misses most about being Secretary of State is the jet. Shortly after he retired, he had to fly somewhere, so a friend had to talk him through how normal people get plane tickets. You have to park your car in the garage, walk to the airport, buy your ticket and then go find the correct terminal. They do not roll out a red carpet for ordinary people. Once he had his instructions, he said he followed them very carefully, only he made three mistakes: he was running late, he paid in cash, and he had no luggage. He very shortly found himself surrounded by security personnel doing a very thorough job of searching every inch of him. He said he was bewildered and slightly annoyed until he realized that he had helped put those procedures in place.

I had no idea that Colin Powell is as old as he is. He is 71. He doesn't look it at all. According to Time magazine he is one of the top 5 gracefully aging men. He's actually number two, right in front of Robert Redford. I didn't think Robert Redford was aging that gracefully (I mean have you seen his skin? It looks like it's made from leather that came off of someone's very well worn cowboy boots.), so I don't know if it's a compliment to be only one in front of him, but anyway, the point was Colin Powell doesn't seem like a 71 year old. He recently bought a Corvette and says he recommends them to everyone. The police in his town were not that happy with his decision, but he enjoys every minute of it.

Now I don't want to give the wrong impression. The conference wasn't all fun and games. We really learned a lot. For instance, I bet you didn't know that the prime minister of Japan is an Elvis fan, did you? He is also a big fan of the New York Yankees.

After Mr. Powell was done speaking, Vance the Bulldog came back up to the podium and presented him with his very own engraved cowbell, which he proceeded to ring, although you couldn't hear it over the whistles and screams from the crowd. Hooray for Colin Powell and Bulldawgs everywhere!

P.S. I figured I'd leave you with one last picture (now that I know how). Colin Powell isn't the only famous MSU cowbell ringer. Apparently William Wallace/Mel Gibson has one too!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

World Domination

I recently bought the game Risk for my dad as a birthday present. I'd never actually sat down and played a full game before. I'd just always assumed I wouldn't like it. I was wrong. We played the night my dad opened the game, and I lost, but I fell in love...with taking over the world. I bought my own copy of the game yesterday and have since succeeded in getting my little group hooked.

I sometimes wonder if I'm missing out on college experiences because I don't go to all the parties, concerts, and clubs, but I really don't think I am. Most people when looking back at school can only reminisce the good old days of getting drunk at every sporting event. I can look back and smile at how many times I controlled the Western Hemisphere or took over Asia and all the strategy discussions between games. Who cares if I'm not a sorority sister with 20 dates? I have achieved world domination.

Monday, September 22, 2008

I Forget...

Have you ever thought of a great idea for a blog post (I mean a blow-your-mind-knock-your-socks-off-absolutely-amazing blog post) and by the time you sat down at your computer to type it out, you'd forgotten what your super awesome idea was? I have.

Sunday, September 21, 2008


I have decided that computer programming is not my thing.  One would think that when one downloads a template to use on one's blog that all one would have to do is copy and paste into one's edit html tab.  Not so.  The problem is I have no clue what is required so unless I have a breakthrough and become suddenly fluent in html or xml or whatever it is, my blog will be forced to keep its current template.  This would not be so bad except now that I know there is a whole world of amazing templates out there that are off limits to me simply because of my technology shortcomings, I know I will not be satisfied.  Oh to be a tech nerd!

Saturday, September 20, 2008


My mom and best friend have fairly recently gotten into the whole blogging thing and have been trying to get me to join in for a while. I may be just now starting to post, but I have a confession to make: I have had a profile on here for quite some time, I just never could come up with a good name. I kept putting off creating the actual blog because I didn't want to just type in some dumb name that I'd eventually either be embarrassed by or get tired of. I wanted it to be catchy, clever, and memorable. As you can see, I gave up.