Thursday, October 30, 2008

Bonne Halloween!

For the past two days, French class has been dedicated solely to Halloween. Yesterday we were given a list of French Halloweeny words and told to pair up and write a Halloween story. D.J.'s and mine was about a witch (une sorciere) named Miranda that got drunk on pumpkin beer (citrouille biere) one night and fell off her broom (balai) into a cemetery (cimetiere) and died (mort). She is now a ghost (fantome).

Today we were given this worksheet (<-- look left) and told to complete it. It was incredibly difficult, I assure you. Especially with the answer so cleverly marked out at the bottom ( look right --> and down v (I have no down arrow so a "v" will have to suffice)). We were then given very Halloweeny orange fortune cookies (that were even nastier than regular fortune cookies if that is at all possible) with French Halloween fortunes inside. Mine said, "Passe une belle Halloween! Bonne chasse aux friandises!" It means, "Have a great Halloween! Happy trick-or-treating!"

Here are a few more of the fortunes. Consider them my Halloween gift to you (since cyber candy isn't very tasty). You can use them to impress all your non-French friends.

Bonne Halloween! C'est un jour EPATANT!
Je le sens jusque dans mes os!
(Happy Halloween! It's a scary day! I feel it in my bones!)

L'Halloween, c'est l'occasion de changer
d'apparence et de hanter la nuit.
(Halloween is the occasion to change your
appearance and haunt the night.)

Offre-toi un plaisir MONSTRE pour l'Halloween!
(Have yourself a monstrously pleasant Halloween!)

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Drunken Ghosts

In each of the halls of the building that I live in there is a bulletin board. The R.A. that lives on each hall is responsible for the decoration of their hall's board. At the beginning of the year, each board has welcome notices, helpful tips for campus living, directions to different restaurants, and lots of that sort of thing. A month or so into the semester, the boards start changing. On D.J.'s hall the board has different optical illusions. On another boys' hall there are "You know you're in college when..." jokes. (I read a few. They're all dumb.) On another of the girls' halls the board is pink and has a big breast cancer ribbon, a sharpie marker, and an invitation to share the breast cancer stories of loved ones that have been affected. The board on my hall kept it's welcome message until about 2 weeks ago. When the welcome message was taken off, a black background and Halloween border was put up around the edges. Other than the border, the board was completely blank for a little over a week. One day late last week, I came in to find it completed, and quite frankly I liked it better blank. Now I suppose the idea behind it was good. It's nice to remind those who are underage of the dangers of alcohol, I suppose. However, the whole thing is just a little goofy. There are smiling ghosts all over it. What do smiling ghosts have to do with alcohol? I guess they go with the whole Halloween theme, but the pumpkins contain supposedly scary facts, so if it was up to me, the ghosts would be a little less happy. Or maybe they're excited about all the people that are apparently going to die from alcohol consumption and add to their numbers. If I don't understand the happy ghosts, I definitely don't understand the drunk ghost. First of all, everyone knows that ghosts can't eat or drink therefore they can't get drunk. Secondly, supposing they could drink, I don't think they would suddenly become filled with cotton balls. Maybe they'd fly a little crooked, but they wouldn't get fluffy. The caption also cracks me up. The message "Looks a little funny, huh?" referring to a tipsy, cotton filled ghost is supposed to convince me not to consume alcoholic beverages? Mission accomplished! If I'm going to turn into a giant cotton ball the second I get drunk, I will most definitely refrain. The eyes in the middle of the board are also a little weird. Who do they belong to? What are they looking at? What is their purpose in the grand scheme of things? Are they just there to fill in a blank spot? If that's the case, and I suspect it is, why not just use another happy little ghost?

I hope my R.A. never reads this...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Take that Physics and Calculus!

I got my calculus test back today and (drum roll please........) I made an A!!!! I haven't gotten the physics test back yet, and I'm thinking it won't be quite as high as the cal grade, but who knows? I'll keep you posted.

<--This is my grade.

And this is me excited about my grade. And strangely neckless. -->

Sunday, October 19, 2008


I am convinced that my calculus teacher and physics teacher are out to get me. They found out somehow that I have one of them at 11 and the other at 12 and have made it their job in life to make my life a living hell. It wasn't enough for them that it's already hard for me to switch gears between the two classes to understand the lecture. They had to get together and schedule tests on the same day, too. My second test in both classes is tomorrow. One right after the other. For the second time. Coincidence? I think not! And they're always on Mondays so my whole weekend is shot because I'm shut up in my room for hours on end finding the dot product of vectors for calculus and calculating the sum of forces for physics. And I don't even have time in between classes to relearn formulas or anything. Oh for tomorrow to be over...

This is my poor desk completely covered with equation sheets, books, and scrap papers.

This is random jibberish I'm supposed to understand.

This is me having a nervous breakdown.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Template Change...Again

I warned you that I was not completely satisfied with the last template, and now that I know how to change it, it is subject to change at any time. I rather like the current one, my only real problem is that there is a random link at the bottom in another language. I don't suppose that really matters though. I never go to the bottom of my page.

Everytime I change a template, all of the widgits are deleted and I have to add them again. I keep putting in a welcome, but I can never remember what I've said the previous time, so I've probably welcomed you all at least 4 different ways. I apologize. Maybe I should start writing them down.

On a completely untemplately note: we proofread the first draft of our papers today in Comp II. We're supposed to write a literary analysis of one of the short stories on our syllabus. Basically, we just pick a "theme" and write about it, backing it up with some academic's ideas. I have issues with these types of assignments. I think the term "theme" was invented by someone determined to give English teachers jobs after about 4th grade when grammar is pretty much mastered. (No offense if you're an English teacher. I have nothing against them. In fact, some of my favorite teachers have been English teachers.) I do not think that authors put nearly as much thought into their compositions as English professors think they do. Granted, there has to be some thought behind why they say what they say, but honestly, every little word does not have to have a secret meaning. Maybe I just feel this way because I have never been good at picking out themes. I read for the enjoyment of reading, not to pick out every detail. I like to get lost in the story, not preoccupied with so called literary elements.

Now what point was I trying to make? Oh yes, I was talking about proofreading. The teacher assigned us partners and we were instructed to read our papers aloud to our partners, the reasoning being that we can hear our own errors if we read them aloud. Next, the paper was to be turned over to the partner who would give it a good silent reading and fill out a form that is supposed to help the writer with revision. My partner, bless his heart, apparently completely misunderstood the assignment. He picked a story and wrote about the setting, but he failed to include any sources whatsoever. He did have one quote, but it had no quotation marks and no citation. It was something like, "Sugar quoted [insert quote of your choice here]." Not even a comma to separate the lead-in from the quote. On top of his inability to quote, he had atrocious grammar. My 6th grade sister can probably construct better sentences. When he gave me his paper, I got right to work. I wrote all over it, and I know I didn't get all of the mistakes. After tearing his work to pieces, I gave him a detailed description of how to properly quote sources and walked him step-by-step through accessing the library's database so he could find sources. I only hope I helped a little. He certainly needed it. He didn't even get the name of the story right. It wasn't the story I was writing about, and in fact, it's probably my least favorite of all the ones we've read, but I still knew the title and fixed it for him. It's really kind of sad. How do people manage to make it through 13 years of school and at least a year of college and still not know how to write a simple paper? Our school system obviously has some very serious flaws.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Great News!

I have officially figured out how to use one of the millions of pre-made templates that can be found online. Unless you are completely blind, you can see this already. I'm not sure if I'm completely satisfied with this particular one, but it doesn't really matter because I know how now!!!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Turtle Kiss

I bought a bag of Goldfish Crackers today and was just about to open it up and munch on a few when I happened to glance at the back of the bag. On it there were a few pictures and these instructions: "What do you see? There's always more than one way to look at something. Seeing things in DIFFERENT ways can be HELPFUL when trying to solve problems. WHAT DO YOU SEE BELOW? The answer isn't always what it seems!" Below was the picture that I have placed above and to the right. According to the small, upside down print at the bottom of the bag, this can be two Goldfish Crackers, a dog with floppy ears, or two turtles kissing. I see the goldfish; the dog is a bit of a stretch because of the size of the cheeks, but I can see it; the turtles, on the other hand, are waaaaay too much of a stretch. I agree that they might be turtles. Legless, shell-less turtles that are really more like frogs, but that's not the point. There is no way on earth that said turtles are doing anything resembling a kiss. They look like snapping turtles that are trying to snap each others' heads off, or maybe they have the little hangy thing like turkeys. I don't know what it's called. They're not kissing though.

HOLD IT! I just had a breakthrough. The part of the turtle that I thought was a lower jaw might in fact be a leg. Now the turtles are no longer legless, and they sort of look like they might be kissing, but since when to turtles kiss anyway? And how is seeing turtles shaped like Goldfish Crackers going to help anyone solve any real problems? How do they come up with this stuff?

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Haffle Wouse

I just (Well not exactly just because I played Rock Band for a while before I got on here.) got back from Waffle House, or as D.J. refers to it, Haffle Wouse. If you've never called it that, you definitely should because it's much more fun than the actual name, but I digress. We entered said restaurant around 6:45 (We would have gone sooner but the Cowboys game went into overtime. Sadly, they lost, but I digress again.) and spent 5 minutes trying to find a place to sit. It's not that the restaurant was crowded. In fact, we were the only people there but the tables that weren't completely covered with dirty dishes were soaking wet from being cleaned right before we got there. We finally settled on a wet table and had just gotten it mostly dried off with a handful of napkins snagged from another table when the waitress appeared out of nowhere and slapped a soaking wet towel down on the table and got it just as wet as it was before.

When the waitress came back to take our order, I told her what I wanted then told her again because she didn't hear. It went like this all around the table. Nothing like a waitress that doesn't pay attention. We got our food, bits at a time, but that's not really a surprise because they always give it to you in bits at Waffle House (or Haffle Wouse) but it seemed to take forever for the waffles to get there. This didn't really matter to me because I didn't get a waffle, but it's still part of the story. When the waffles did finally arrive, they came with no syrup and no butter. A few minutes of everyone just sitting there not eating their waffles went by before the waitress walked back by. By this time one of my friends had run out of Coke. She got the waitress's attention and asked for butter, syrup, and more Coke. The waitress muttered something unintelligible and wandered off. After messing around at the other end of the restaurant doing who knows what, she came back with syrup and butter, no Coke.

My friend, who likes syrup and had smothered her waffle with it, soon became desperate for more Coke, and understandably judging from the amount of syrup on her plate. Unfortunately for her, our waitress had apparently disappeared into a black hole because she was nowhere to be found. Eventually she got the attention of the sole cook, who was busy with a few other people that had come in by that time, and asked if she could get another drink. The kind cook obliged and my very grateful friend downed most of the drink in one gulp.

As we were eating, our wonderful waitress (Who had magically reappeared by this time.) only stopped by our table once to check on us. It normally annoys me when waitresses constantly check up on you while you're eating, but the one time she stopped by, she asked if she could take any of our plates (They always give you way too many plates at Waffle House and the tables are small and get cramped easily.). We said yes and indicated the plates she should take. She looked at us like we were idiots and walked off.

Once we had finally finished our meals, conserving our drinks because of our knowledge of how difficult it is to get a refill, we sat and waited for the waitress to bring the check. She never came. We sat until 8:00 (recall we arrived at 6:45 and were most likely done eating by 7:15) without the waitress so much as looking in our direction. Finally D.J. got up and and found her to ask her for the check. She brought it and looked annoyed that we had bothered her, even though she had left us mostly alone for over an hour. Between the 4 of us, we left $2 for a tip and got up to pay. I was first in line at the register but had to wait several minutes while she flopped her soaking wet towel down on some counter that didn't need cleaning, and took her time doing it, too. When she finally got to me, she once again gave me the annoyed look and halfway through swiping my card stopped to have a discussion about A-1 sauce with a random guy sitting near by. Waffle House doesn't even have A-1 sauce. According to my friends, she was even ruder to them than she was to me. Once of them even told her to have a good night and she stared like that was the most idiotic thing on the planet to say and remained silent.

And that is the story of my awful trip to Waffle House. It took forever to tell because I bought When Harry Met Sally the other day and decided to put it on. It keeps distracting me. I started typing this at the beginning of the movie and now Harry and Sally are aruging in the kitchen at Marie and Jess's wedding. And in the time it took to find a picture that I wanted, Sally is at the New Year's Eve party and Harry is catching up on his window shopping. If there was a job where you could make a living wasting time, I would be perfect for it.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Squash and Smithereens

I just got back from spending a long weekend at home, so I haven't been grocery shopping in a while. I wanted something to snack on, but the only thing in my fridge was the remnants of a bag of grapes I bought at some point either last week or the week before. Why is it that when you get down to the bottom of a bag of grapes, they're all squashy? I abhor all squashy foods, especially squashy grapes. When grapes are nice and firm, they are the best thing in the world. When they get even a little bit on the mushy side, they suddenly become quite the opposite. It is most depressing. Oh well...

I was reading in 2 Kings the other day and came across this verse: "The king smashed all the altars to smithereens—the altar on the roof shrine of Ahaz, the various altars the kings of Judah had made, the altars of Manasseh that littered the courtyard of The Temple—he smashed them all, pulverized the fragments, and scattered their dust in the Valley of Kidron." 2 Kings 23:12
I have heard the word smithereens all my life, but never thought it was an actual word. I figured it was just another one of those words that every one knows what it means, but no one knows where it came from because it's not a real word. However, it's printed in the Bible. I guess that means it's real.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Hello October

Fall officially starts in September, but it doesn't really feel like fall to me until October. It can be 90 degrees outside, but if I know it's October, somehow it still feels like fall. Today was a nice first day of October. It actually wasn't 90 degrees. Only like 77. That's still pretty warm to be considered fall, but any temperature that doesn't have me pouring sweat by the time I get to class is fine by me.

One thing that did mar my lovely October day was my ridiculous Mathematica project. I'm beginning to wish that the teacher that I was so happy with for giving me a second chance had just given me a low grade and let that be the end of it. I'm so tired of being cooped up in a computer lab for countless hours. Tomorrow will be the last day of it though. It has to be because the project is due (for the second time) on Friday. Then only one more project (he claims the second one is easier) and Mathematica will be a thing of my past. Hopefully...

As my partner and I were leaving the computer lab today, we passed by a friend of hers who was also working on a Mathematica project. We are in Honors Cal III and he is in regular Cal III. Our project involved animating 3D locks and shooting projectiles of off towers factoring in not one, but two gravitational pulls. His project involved making graphs of letters of the alphabet. He was on C as we were leaving. I think I want to puke. Why, oh why did I decide to use Cal III as my one honors class this year? Why could I not have done like I did last year and taken something like Honors Intro to Theater? We took like one test in there. It was on Hamlet, which I also read in high school. It had questions like, "What country does Hamlet take place in?" and "What is the name of Hamlet's girlfriend?" I hate my life! Just kidding.

On a lighter note, my Comp II class is cancelled tomorrow. On a darker (Can you use darker? Everone always just uses lighter.) note, I do not get to enjoy this at all because I will once again be in the computer lab burning brain cells by staring at a computer screen and getting absolutely nowhere. On another lighter note, I was planning on working on the project from 11:00 until 2:00 since my 12:30 class was cancelled, but instead I get to quit early. On another darker note, the reason I'm leaving early is because I have a French test at 2:00 that I'm probably going to fail if I don't leave early so I can go study. School is the pits. I'm ready for the weekend. Fall break, baby! Four blissful days of absolutely no school work...except for the fact that I have online physics and Cal III homework due. Fall break is the pits.