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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in randy_pollok's LiveJournal:

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Sunday, July 27th, 2008
12:00 am
Trying posting some more soon. My last post on Livejournal was 102 weeks ago but i want to get in the habit of saying something semi publicly to friends every now and then, again. The odds of this happening are slim but..

Well, just for now, I want to give a late happy birthday to Chris-Pay and mister m. vincent a., i hope you all had a great time.

I know this is a lame post, but I figure if I just start writing something every now and then, I'll come up with an occasional interesting anecdotey.

Goodnight Nurse.
Tuesday, August 8th, 2006
11:25 am

We are the hollow men
We are the stuffed men
Leaning together
Headpiece filled with straw. Alas!
Our dried voices, when
We whisper together
Are quiet and meaningless
As wind in dry grass
Or rats' feet over broken glass
In our dry cellar

Shape without form, shade without colour,
Paralysed force, gesture without motion;

Those who have crossed
With direct eyes, to death's other Kingdom
Remember us -- if at all -- not as lost
Violent souls, but only
As the hollow men
The stuffed men.


Eyes I dare not meet in dreams
In death's dream kingdom
These do not appear:
There, the eyes are
Sunlight on a broken column
There, is a tree swinging
And voices are
In the wind's singing
More distant and more solemn
Than a fading star.

Let me be no nearer
In death's dream kingdom
Let me also wear
Such deliberate disguises
Rat's coat, crowskin, crossed staves
In a field
Behaving as the wind behaves
No nearer --

Not that final meeting
In the twilight kingdom


This is the dead land
This is cactus land
Here the stone images
Are raised, here they receive
The supplication of a dead man's hand
Under the twinkle of a fading star.

Is it like this
In death's other kingdom
Waking alone
At the hour when we are
Trembling with tenderness
Lips that would kiss
Form prayers to broken stone.


The eyes are not here
There are no eyes here
In this valley of dying stars
In this hollow valley
This broken jaw of our lost kingdoms

In this last of meeting places
We grope together
And avoid speech
Gathered on this beach of the tumid river

Sightless, unless
The eyes reappear
As the perpetual star
Multifoliate rose
Of death's twilight kingdom
The hope only
Of empty men.


Here we go round the prickly pear
Prickly pear prickly pear
Here we go round the prickly pear
At five o'clock in the morning.

Between the idea
And the reality
Between the motion
And the act
Falls the Shadow

For Thine is the Kingdom

Between the conception
And the creation
Between the emotion
And the response
Falls the Shadow

Life is very long

Between the desire
And the spasm
Between the potency
And the existence
Between the essence
And the descent
Falls the Shadow
For Thine is the Kingdom

For Thine is
Life is
For Thine is the

Current Mood: pessimistic
Thursday, July 20th, 2006
11:13 am
haaapppyy birrthddaay tooo meee... happpyy biirrtthddaayy toooo meeee...

Sunday, September 12th, 2004
11:45 pm
Sorry about posting what I was hinting about 2 weeks late. But below (or sideways, or whichever - the first previous post I've made) Is my moms writings from athens.

My mom went to the olympics and had a fairly interesting time, and she sent to many friends a series of emails saying how things went. Since I thought this would be of interest to others, I have posted it here. For the close friends that probably read my journal when I post, this might be of interest just because you know me and you might find my moms travels interesting. To anyone else that would find this interesting simply as a tale of the olympics, as a sample of modern letter writing, as a psychological examination of my mom - whatever - you are all very welcome to read on. Matt, mark, diane, whomever, feel free to pass this on. Matt might consider showing this to his mom, either in complete form or highlights. If no one reads it, my feelings aren't hurt. I am simply curiously pleased by watching the birth of this gem of nostalgia.

11:44 pm
Ann in Athens
Hello Family and Friends, I made it to Athens with no worries.  Yesterday, after getting checked into my hotel,I made my way to Nea Ionia and picked up my Olympic volunteer uniforms (3 shirts, 2 pants, 1 jacket, a goofy hat, 3 pairs of socks, a fanny pack with water bottle (and 5 GOLDEN RINGS, 4 CALLING BIRDS, 3 ...).   The public transportation is great and I have had no difficulty going all over the city.  It is nice to just flash your pass and not pay cash). My room at the hostel is interesting.  It has three beds in it, but I was along last night and that was fine.  When you walk in the room you use your key to turn the lights and air conditioner on (you can not use them without your key in this slot).  Your room gets hot when you are not in it.  It does have a sink with hot and cold water, but the toilet and shower are down the hall.  It was clean and really fine.  I found my way back without looking at the map tonight. Today, I had the best time.  I went to the ancient sea port south of athens and took a hydrofoil boat to the island of Aigina.  It took about 45 min. to get there.  I then took a break neck public bus to a beautiful beach area that was recommended to me by the staff.  It is called the Agia Marina.  I paid 4E for a chair and umbrella and it was worth every E. spent.  I read my book, walked on the beach, took a nap, and enjoyed to waves that were almost up to the foot end of my chair.  My belly did get some sun, but it has not seen the light of day for decades.  The young, old, fat, and thin all wear very small bathing suits or parts of suits.   With 5 topless women within about 100 feet of me, my very white belly was not noticed.  I also had a guy and a lady change clothes almost next to me.  They stripped down to their birthday suit and put their clothes back on. It is a good thing I had a great book to keep my nose it.   After a beautiful day at the beach I returned to Athens on the ferry boat.  It is slower but only 4E and it was the most beautiful evening between 6-7:30pm to enjoy the ride on the deck and see the sights. Tomorrow I am going to a museum and stay in town.  My volunteer job does not start until Thurs., but I am going to go tomorrow and try and get my work schedule so that I can buy some tickets to events when I am not working. I hope that you are all doing fine.  Take care.  Ann

Hello from Athens, Please delete if this is way t.m.i.   I did go to the "job site" today and got my volunteer work schedule and will work the following 11  - 8 hour days: 12th 7:30-4;  14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 23, 24, 25 from 10-6; and on the 20th from 3-11:30. I was also able to get the following tickets to Olympic events after a 2 hour wait in line (more about lines in a min.):  20th - swimming in the AM;  21st tennis;  22- softball;  26th water polo; and 27th canoe or kayak.  They should be great. Just a note about some interesting cultural differences: 1)public rest rooms:  a hole in the floor? This must have been thought up by a man or by a woman that does not wear undies or shorts.  Athens spent all of this money on the city for the Olympics (and they still do not have a pot to piss in - so to speak) 2)a line:  Americans or the Australians know how to cue and wait in a line one after the other (think Disney world). This is not the case in Greece.  They all rush to the front of the line and will elbow you or step on you to get in front of you. OH - well.  It is all good and another beautiful day in Athens.  Take care.  Ann

Greeting from Athens, Keep in mind that I did not make out the schedule.  After working one full day, I had the next day off and took the chance to go to the beautiful island of Hydra.  They don't allow cars and you can only get around by donkey or water taxi.  After a visit to the local museum (I am getting some culture - really)I took the next water taxi to a fantastic beach.  My tan is going to be really great and or my skin is going to fall off and my dermatologist is going to freak when he sees me two days after I get back.  As soon as I returned from Hydra, I met my two new roommates.  One is from New Zealand and the other from England. We were at a bar before you could say good onya Mate.  We watched the opening ceremonies with many locals and it was a very festive time.   The L. of wine also helped a lot. I just completed my second day on the job and it is interesting although not my first choice if I had to pick something.  I am working with officials from boxing, judo, table tennis, and wrestling.  You try and tell a 300 pound former boxing champ that he missed his bus and will need to take a taxi.  These boxing guys have taken way to many blows to the head and do not follow the very easy schedule give to them and then they are upset with us that they will not get to the venue on time.  The table tennis officials are quick and look like they are out of central casting for Queer Eye for the straight guy TV program. They are very nice for the most part and it is fun talking to folks from all over the world.  I am working with a really nice staff from Germany, Slovacia, Netherlands, and most are from Greece.   I may try and get a few more tickets for the games, but the line at times is 4 hours long.  We will see.  I hope you are all doing fine.  Ann

Life in Athens: Athens in an interesting city, but it does have some unique things about it. The city has many stray dogs that have no owners and no one to feed or care for them.  If you are looking for a cool or shady place just look for a group of 15 or so dogs hanging out.  I asked the locals about them and they said that they will most likely die in the winter when it snows (I didn't know that Athens got snow - it has been so hot every day).  This is really sad as the dogs are so tame and so friendly.  They do not bark and chase you.  They just look at you with these sad eyes. Sad. Smoking is another thing.  Every Greek that I have met is a chain smoker.  They talk about fog in Athens.  I think it is mostly the result of a giant cloud of smoke. The old men just sit around and play cards and cough.  Yuck.  It is sad to see so many young folks smoking as they will turn into the coughing old if they are lucky.  There is no such thing as a non-smoking section of anything.  If you don't like cigarette smoke this is not the place for you. The international staff at the youth hostel is really growing on me.  They are a lot of fun and the others that stay there are also a really interesting intenational group of folks.   Let the games continue. "Ropa"   Take care.  Ann  

Let the Games Begin! I just returned from attending my first Olympic event.  It was a women's gymnastic event and it was excellent and I had a great seat. Today is Sunday and a special religious holiday as well and I went to the Olympic stadium first thing in the morning to buy a few more tickers.  There was no line at all and I picked up tickets for the following other events:   another tennis ticket for the 17th;  a badminton ticket for the 18th;  a women's volleyball (USA is playing Cuba); and I am really excited that I was able to get a ticket to Athletics and will get to see Perdita Felician in the 100M Hurdles.  I would be great fun to see her do well.  Her times have been the best in the world this year. Syndy Syndor made last minute plans to attend Athens and will be staying with me starting on the 19th.  It will be great to attend some cultural events with her as she really is an expert in that area.  I can treat her to the local watering hole. Sounds like a good exchange to me. You will all be glad to hear that I found Star Bucks in Athens.  It is like mecca and it is on the way to my volunteer job.  Yes, I plan to stop in most everyday (it is nicely airconditioned and has a real toilet as well - yipee). It is currently 11:45pm, and you know that it is way late for me.  Good night.  Ann

Hello Sports Fans, My current roommates met me at 6:30 for dinner and my Greek co-workers recommended an excellent place.  We had a variety of Greek foods and wine.  We did make it back OK. Tomorrow I will start at 6:30AM because I have a 5:00PM tennis ticket.  They are really serious about having me work an 8 hour day.  I really can't remember when I have worked this hard - or played this hard (not to say that I don't work hard - but not for 8-9 hours at one time).  Another beautiful sunny in the city.  Take care.  Ann PS Yes, Perdita Felician was a U. of I student of mine for the last three years.  She graduated in May and is really a great person as well as an athlete.  

Hello Family and Friends, Today did not start out so well but it ended great.  The first bus for the boxing officials and Doctors was to depart at 6:50.  They all loaded and we were told a few were missing.  We were told to send them off after they are two minutes late.  We waited 5 minutes and sent the bus on its way.  Two Doctors from Russia them came up to me when they missed the bus and started yelling at me because they said it was stupid for them to arrive so early.  I tried to be professional and told them that we follow the given schedule.  They thought I should change the schedule (and ignore the other 100 that made it on time today).  They took a taxi and were still mad when they took off.  Most folks have really been nice, but there are always a few. I did go to the Olympic Tennic center today and saw four matches.  They were really excellent and the evening was beautiful and not too hot. I saw 17 year old Chech Tomas Berdych beat Roger Federer in 3;  Andy Roddick was in a real dog fight with Tommy Haas and won in 3; it was fun to see the women's doubles of Aeogoe/Sugyama beat the Russian pair of Dementaeva/Myskana; and I watched a bit of the match with Malleve beating the Greek Danilidou.  That match was on center court and the Greek fans were going wild (it did not help in this case.) Syndy Syndor and I are going to go to the Museum of Cycladic Art.  They have a new exbit "Glorious Hellas:  Sports and Olympic Spirit in the region of the Greek world.  "This exhibition will present the formation of sports during the ancient years in the west part of the region of the Greek world."  It will be great. I hope that you are all well and doing fine.  Take care.  Ann

Hello from Athens, Today was just beautiful and I really enjoyed the company of my funny and interesting co-workers.  We are really bonding as a group and do have time to visit between rounding up our officials and sending them off.  The Greek part of the group is more than anxious to give me travel and life advice.  They really laughed at me when I told them I had dinner at a men's club.  On my way home this week I was looking for a place to have a Greek salade (it was only about 6:00pm).  A came across this clean looking restaurant and asked if they had them.  The man assured me they did and welcomed me in. After I sat down  I  noticed that only men were in the place and only men continued to enter the place. After I started in on my dinner, the owner informed me that I was the first American and the only woman to enter this fine establishment.  Men started to flock around me and ask question about where I lived and about corn and the U.S.A.   They were really very nice, but I was just as glad to finish and get out.  Greece has a men's club on almost every corner.  They are places where men between the ages of 35-95 go to avoid family and house chores as far as I can tell.  My Greek co-workers informed me that they go there to play cards, smoke, drink,flip these worry beads (I can't think that they worry about anything as they are not home with the kids or toil of everyday life) and avoid any possibility of getting "nagged" at. Some American men may thing these places are a good idea and we would not want them to get any ideas.   Perhaps it is the Greek equivalent of golf.  What else could take so much time (sorry Pam and Eric) and be such a waste of time. Tonight I attended 3 badminton matches (two singles and one doubles).  They were excellent.  I need to go back to my room and pack.  Tomorrow I move to my new digs and I am really going to miss my current place and room mates.  The staff is so friendly and I have enjoyed getting to know them as well.   It will be fun to see Syndy and run around Athens with her.   Take care.  Ann PS Please forgive the spelling.  I write these things in a hurry.    

Greeting from Athens, I did get moved to my new digs yesterday and dropped my bags off at the "Olympic" at 9:00am on my way to "work" as the room was not ready.  I returned to the room about 7:00pm to set eyes on it for the first time.  It is a real dump and that is putting it kindly.  I could only imagine what Syndy would say when she saw it. She arrived around 8:00pm and when she stepped in we started laughing until we had tears.  I don't think that I can put into words what it is like that will really do it justice.   It has one light bulb that hangs on a broken wire.  We have an open window and if you get too close you would drop 4 floors to the very busy street.  Traffic was heavy and loud all night long.   Syndy was tired from the trip, but she was still up for a walk around the acropolis.  It could not have been more beautiful than it was last night.  You would not believe all the people that were out taking in the walk and beautiful evening as well.  We had a grat time.  I am on my way to a 10:00 swimming event.  Take care.  Ann

Hello Family and Friends, It is really nice to have Syndy staying with me.  We were told that prostitutes and drug addicts were common in our area (if not in our Hotel Olympic), but that this element of society has been relocated for the Olympics.  Syndy and I would hardly go to the shower or rest room without the other one on guard as a safety backup.  We are much more relaxed today as we have seen really normal folks as residents just like ourselves.  Syndy was running down the hall today in a towel and we are not locking ourselves out or in when we use the facilities. I know you probably don't want anymore toilet stories, but I can't help but share this one with you.  Last night Syndy and I had dinner at an excellent restaurant and had one of the best salmon dinners we ever had.  The restaurant rest room had a toilet that spun around after you used it.  The seat would just start spinning and cleaning itself.  I was so amazed by it that I insisted that Syndy share the experience as well and I sent her in.  We had a good laugh after that also.  She wanted to know if you stayed seated while it spun around.  I suggested she got off before the ride began. Yesterday the Olympic swim trials were great to see.  The 50M women's free was good, the 1500M men's free was a bit long, and the 4x100M medley relays for both men and women were interesting as I got to at least see all the best swimmers (like Michael Phelps, etc.) Syndy and I are going to several museums today and I have ticket for tennis tonight at 5:00.  I only wish that more U.S. players did not get knocked out of the draw. I hope that you are all well.  This will be my last week in Athens and I look forward to seeing you soon.  Take care.  Ann

Greeting from Athens, The last two days have been busy with Syndy.  We went to the National Archives Museum and the Cycladic Museum.  It was so much fun to go to these places because she is so enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and passionate about Greek history.  The Cycladic museum had items over 5,000 years old and look like modern art.  They also had an unbelieveable Olympic sport section with a collection from all over the world just for the Olympics.  We had an exceptional tour guide at this museum and it was really fantastic.  Syndy was my personal guide at the National Museum and it was wonderful as well. It was so nice to have her company my first four nights at this Hotel Olympic.  See took off at 12:30 am for her flight back today.  She said that she saw everything she wanted and much more and she was pleased with her wirl wind visit.  She packed a lot in the four days she was here. Back to the Olympic Games. When I bought the tickets I really did not know who I was going to see play. Its all good, right?  Friday night I attended two bronze medal matches.   The first was women's singles between Myskina (ranked 3rd) and Molik from Australia (ranked 74th).  Molik won it was an excellent match.  The second match was women's doubles between the Argentine pair of Suarez (ranked the #1 doubles player in the world)/Torbini vs. Asageo/Sugiyam.   Suarez/Torbini won and it was interesting to see doubles played at it's best.  I was on show court one vs. center court and was able to see very near the court.  It was great fun.  After that match, I sat next to center court outside the building and could hear the crowd for Dent vs. Gonzalez and wrote a card to my mother.It was just a beautiful evening and glorious to watch the sun set over Athens.  I enjoyed it very much. Yesterday, I watched womens softball from 9am-2:30 PM.  The first game was between Japan and China.  The Japan fans are crazy.  To cheer them on the yell "Kick But" but the can't pronounce it and it sounds like "Keeeck Buuuut". Funny. The U.S.A. played Australia next and it was the first time the U.S. crowd was really vocal.  We won 6-0 and it was fun to be part of such an excited crowd cheering on the U.S. team. I am back to work from 10-6:40 for the next three days.  Take care.  Ann

Hello from friendly Athens, Yesterday was a nice day to catch my breath and I hope that it was good for you as well.  After "work" I swam about a mile in the Hotel Stanley pool and changed in the WC.  It was so nice to get some exercise. I can tell I am already deconditioned from my Mini-Tri and prior training on Aug. 7th. After my swim I went to the National Gardens. This is the place where folks jog (now I find it) and take the family to
relax.  It had a huge central pond where you can find children feeding the ducks etc.  It also has a cafe and an adjoining flee market.  I had to take a look and picked up a few things. On Sun. I went to Olympic volleyball games between Brazil and Korea, Brazil and won and they had many loud fans.  I then stayed for the U.S. vs. Cuba match.  It was expecially interesting because I was sitting in the Cuba family and friends section and did not know it before the matches began.  Before either matach started I changed my seat (they have many extra seats and don't mind if you switch around - you do need to move if someone has your particular seat and wants it).The fans for Cuba are also very vocal and yell out "UUUUUUBa".  They drop the "C" sound.  It was fun and they were still nice to me when I clapped for a good U.S. play.  The players were a notch better, bigger, and faster than the U. of I volleyball team, but not that much different. The U.S. won the first two games and I started for my for my Hotel Olympic. The U.S. team had the worst won-loss record in that part of the draw and they were just playing for pride at that point.  They played very well. Everybody is sooooooo nice. You can talk to folks from many different countries and everybody is friendly and wants to talk about their Olympic experience. At the Olympic softball games on Sunday, it was so hot! I was sitting next to a Canadian P.E. teacher and we had a great conversation.  We were both trying to tell the Greeks in front of us the rules of the game and it was quite difficult and fun at the same time.  I was so hot that I think I looked like I was going to get heat exhaustion (my face gets red easily). She suggested that we try and go to the upper deck to the one area with shade.  We took off and found much more comfortabale seats to watch the U.S. game. She is going to send me pictures and several other folks I have met along the way are going to do the same. Getting to chat with an internation audience has been one of the best parts of this trip.   I am still enjoying the company of my international co- workers.  Only two more days on the job.  After work today I will go to the stadium to see Perdita in the 100 Hurdles.  I did read in the paper yesterday that she was the 3rd fastest qualifier.  It would be great if she could medal.  Take care.  Ann

Hello from the Olympics, Last night was so sad for Perdita at the Olympic stadium.   She fell on the first hurdle of her 100M final event. She worked so hard to get to this event.  I also saw her run in Sydney and it is going to be a long four years until she gets to Bejing China. It was exciting being at final events last night. On the bright side, U.S. women did take first and third in that event and they were thrilled. They had the medal ceremony for several events and it is moving to see the emotional and excited athletes.  I also witnessed the world record being set in the women's pole vault. That was great and the crowd was wild. Yesterday was a long day for me.  I was up and at-em between 7am and 1:15am. I plan on walking to work via the farmers market.  My last day of work should be fine and I will look forward to being a tourist again.  If I had my work schedule ahead of time I think that I would have planned a flight home sooner. Have a great day.  Cheers.  Ann

Hello and counting down from Athens, Yesterday was my last day on the job and I was sad to say bye to my co-workers, but I was just as glad not to be working any longer. I need to inform you about my very own swat team.  Because Hotel Stanley is next to a metro stop we have armed police and army guys all over the place.  Only once did I have a car driver who would not move from the load zone when I explained that he needed to move on.  During the week we have been friendly with the "troops" and when I asked them to pursuade this guy to move, they surrounded the car and they guy decided it would be best to move along.  I have never had such power in my life.  It was only used once, but it was nice to know that I had great "back up" if needed. I went for another swim in the pool after work and had a rather quiet evening.  It is difficult to sleep at Hotel Olympic because it is hot and the loud noise from the heavy traffic just below my window never stops.  My own bed is starting to sound very good. This is also my last night at this dive and I will be at a new place for my last two nights.  I talked with them today and will drop off my bags at 6:30 am on my way to my last Olympic event.  It is some type of rowing way
on the other side of Athens.  After the event I plan to find a beach and relax.  I was told it is very nice on that side also and it will be nice to see a new area. Tonight I have the hot Olympic ticket in town and again it was just by chance.  I am going to watch the U.S. play Australia for the bronze in water polo followed by the gold medal game between Greece and Italy.  The Greek fans will be going absolutely crazy for this one and it will be a blast to see. Today was really interesting.  I went to both the National Benaki Museum.  It had tremendous collections of many Greek treasures, costumes, paintings, coins, jewerly, religious artwork, etc. etc. The Archives of the Museum of Greek Popular Musical Instruments was also just fantastic. Randy and Mona would just love this place.  Next to each group of historic instruments (flutes, clarinets, drums, bag piper, violins, etc. etc.) they had ear phones that you could put on and hear that particular type of music.  It was really neat. This museum was on the Plaka and I had another view of the Roman Forum and Tower of the Winds, and the Turkish Baths.   Always interesting!!!!! Take care. Ann

The last hurrah and greetings from Athens, This is my last day in Athens and I will head out for the airport at 5:30am tomorrow.  This has been a great trip and one that I will always have fond memories of. Yesterday was a great day also.  I attended the finals and medal ceremonies for one man kayak and canoe, 4 woman kayak, and 2 and 4 man kayak held at Schinias. No U.S.A. athletes were in any of these events and I doubt that you saw any of it (we don't usually show sports that the we are not good at like this and badminton for example). This time a sat with a group from Hungary.  They had a medal winner in almost every event and were very vocal with non-stop shouts of "re-ahh, re-ahh, hoon-ga-re-ahh". Schinias is about one and one half hours north and east of Athens on the shore.  After the event I walked about one half mile to the beach.  It is the largest beach on that side of the country and it was packed with Greeks enjoying the beautiful day with families and friends.  They like to play paddle ball at the waters edge.   I walked at least one mile up and back (got burnt) and enjoyed the sound of the waves and the surf and sights and sounds of the beach atmosphere.It was a fantastic day!  I took a local bus back to Athens (only 3 a day - glad I did not miss it)from a non existant bus stop. No sign, no nothing - the locals told me to just flag down any bus I saw around 5:30 PM and check to see if it was the right one.It worked! I returned to my first of two nights in my new place the "Hotel Appia".  It is so much better than my last place.  It was quiet and I finally got a good nights rest. OK - so I did kill a 3" long cockroach in the bathroom but I have had better kills at both the Freer and IMPE Pool areas (I did zip up my bags and put them up just in case). Luxury, I have my own bathroom, shower, and color TV.  The finals of the team synchro were on and it was fun to watch from my room. Today I am off to a beach on the south east side and way south of Pyrious. My greek friends said that it was also a beautiful beach.  It will be a great chanace to relax before I hit the mad house of reality to great me when I get home and back to work.  I will be ready to return and I do miss my family and friends.  Take care.  Fondly.  Ann
Monday, August 23rd, 2004
10:30 pm
coming next week!
A epic journey of classic scale


A midwesterners odyssey
10:29 pm
You don't know what I like and what I don't like
Come on nathan scott phillips. Lets eat his brains while they're still warm... and thinkin.
Thursday, April 29th, 2004
7:53 pm
2 posts in one day? Just a coincidence, I promise.

Found this. I think matt would enjoy it.

I am not making a proper link, and if that bothers anyone, then said botherees can proceed to eat me.

6:16 pm
small news
On tuesday, I taught my first guitar lesson (since my senior year of highschool, and not counting a few rare occasions in college when I helped other people out with a few "pointers"). I taught guitar to a skinny little twelve year old kid with eyes like saucers and no voice in his head. I'm not sure if he was scared of me, impressed with me, nervous, or just ... a kid. But he didn't say a damn word. Apparently, he doesn't know any music and doesn't listen to any music - I don't think those are exclusive terms, and it is sadly often the case where people are one or the other. To have both seems to be an innocent state of ignorant bliss.

The kids guitar is a johnson, as is his amp. I have no idea what brand this is, but it seemed to work. The guitar was a strat body. Kinda reddish purple stain to wood, which still had the faintest impression of the grain beneath. He got the guitar for christmas, 2002. The strings are the originals.

I'm not sure what I will teach him next week. He knows nothing of music. I am currently planning on restringing his guitar and explaining guitar anatomy to him while I do so. I will follow that by explaining the concept of pitches, and where the natural pitches occur on the guitar (with an excercise handout to help him remember the pitches). I intend to use numbered pitches, because it might be more complicated, I feel it illustrates pitch location/change on guitar ... I am refering to things like E2 being the lowest pitch on the instrument, and E4 being the "open pitch" of the highest string, so that he can see how the pitches repeat in alphabetical order, but there is still a system showing one letter name being a higher pitch then the other. I suspect this will pretty much take up the whole hour ... I will also work with him on posturing, and how to hold a guitar.

His parents are buying him/us a beginner guitar book, which I will use to teach him. But I think the book will be moot until I teach him Pitch. I suppose I shall include a brief lesson about clef's, focusing mostly on the treble clef as that is what he will be needing to know how to read.


In related news, I received another guitar lesson phone call today. A woman is interested in me teaching guitar to her 40 year old husband and 10 year old son as a birthday present, their birthday's being this next week - not on the same day, but close. My rates are 15$ an hour and 10$ a halfhour, but I told her that if i teach both at once, I would cut my rate to just 20$ an hour. I have mixed feelings on this. 1 - i am theoretically working the same length of time as for 1 student, so I should be getting paid 15$. 2 - i am theoretically imparting my knowledge on not one, but two people, so i should be getting paid 30$. The 20$ compromise seems a fair way to handle the situation, and to show myself as atleast a considerate if not intelligent person. The smart thing to do is just charge them 30$, but if I can get new students through these people by allowing the quality of my being shine, I will make more money still! Oh well.

I'm posting this here just to hear other peoples thoughts, and so I can get in the habit of livejournaling more. Mark reminded me to, with his thoughts on quitting livejournal. I am relieved to hear he will only be posting less often, and not stopping, because his livejournal is one of the few ways in which mona and I can keep in touch with his life. Back to me though - I plan on keeping a journal of lesson teaching experiences for now, and I mean it about those suggestions. If matt has a good idea regarding teaching something ever, please tell me.

Hope everyone is having a nice time. I'll write to you all in another week I suppose. Good days sirs.
Tuesday, April 13th, 2004
11:25 am
Well said, sir
Hello, everybody. I don't update often, and in recent weeks, I suppose not at all. For this, I apologize, but I have been somewhat predisposed.

Unrelated to the busy quality of my life, I ran across a story of horrific censorship just a week or so ago. The story told how a student was expelled from an art college for writing a violent story, and the student's teacher was found unemployed when her contract was mysteriously unrenewed.

This story has bothered me immensely, something of a troublesome itch at the back of my mind. Perhaps as the result of time passing, I am feeling less enraged at the moment - but mostly, I feel that I have obtained some measure of solace from these words.

Please read that link there, especially if you have read about the situation in question (mark). I suspect I will be posting more as of may, but for now, I return to silence.

Current Mood: thirsty
Friday, March 19th, 2004
12:18 am
Want to know something fucked up?
You ever wonder about your lineage? How much do you know about your family's past?

My mothers parents are both fairly recent scottish immigrants, and my dad's father was similarly a fairly recent scott, and my dad's mom's relatives were welsh. I've always thought that having well known scottish clansman in my family's past to be pretty boss, but i learned something new earlier this week that seems to be something of a trump card.

I am the great great great (maybe a couple more greats) grandson of rebecca nurse, and great (X) grandnephew to mary easty and sarah cloyce. My dad's mom's welsh ancestors apparently came over to america in the early 17th century and managed to avoid death from disease, starvation, and other horrible things, only to be mangled by religion and the insanity of others after having spawned those that would eventually beget all the way down to me.

That is pretty fucked up.
Friday, March 12th, 2004
9:38 pm
new user icon
Woot. New icon.
Wednesday, March 10th, 2004
7:49 pm
an apology
My last gift seemed to upset quite a few people.

For that I apologize.

As an olive branch, I offer something different.

It is still scary in a sense, but ... Well, it is a peaceful sort of scary that probably won't give you nightmares, though it really should, as opposed to the cat w/h, which really shouldn't.

Good day.
Tuesday, March 2nd, 2004
3:34 pm
Cool movie
I haven't posted in a while, so I thought I'd give all you folks a little treat.

Sunday, February 22nd, 2004
8:39 pm
Mark keeps telling me that i am angry, and i just nod and smile. Well, i just took the 'which trainspotting chraracter' are you test and ...

Which Trainspotting Character Are You?


12:28 am
roit ..
well ... umm ... I've seen this posted around a lot lately. And i didn't feel the need to put this up, because I don't really appreciate its presentation, but it has come up in discussion a good bit lately.

What i don't like: I appreciate good satire, but i also prefer genuine logically arguments. It takes someone vaguely aware of hipocracy to create something like this, but it takes someone a lot smarter to explain why this sort of thing is sarcastic to those it is meant to impact. This mostly seems like a fairly weak inside joke for those that already get it, but maybe it serves to remind some of us 'with it' people ... of ... umm ... issues that we might want to take up with those in power? whatever. again, here because it has come up in discussion.

I didn't make this, i don't know who did, whoever sees this, feel free to repost. whatever.

i now present:


1. Homosexuality is not natural, much like eyeglasses, polyester, and birth control.

2. Heterosexual marriages are valid becasue they produce children. Infertile couples and old people can't legally get married because the world needs more children.

3. Obviously, gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.

4. Straight marriage will be less meaningful if Gay marriage is allowed, since Britney Spears' 55-hour just-for-fun marriage was meaningful.

5. Heterosexual marriage has been around a long time and hasn't changed at all; women are property, blacks can't marry whites, and divorce is illegal.

6. Gay marriage should be decided by people, not the courts, because the majority-elected legislatures, not courts, have historically protected the rights of the minorities.

7. Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire counrty. That's why we have only one religion in America.

8. Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.

9. Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.

10. Children can never suceed without a male and a female role model at home. That's why single parents are forbidden to raise children.

11. Gay marriage will change the foundation of society. Heterosexual marriage has been around for a long time, and we could never adapt to new social norms because we haven't adapted to things like cars or longer lifespans.

12. Civil unions, providing most of the same benefits as marriage with a different name are better, because a "seperate but equal" institution is always constitutional. Seperate schools for African-Americans worked just as well as seperate marriages for gays and lesbians will.
Monday, February 16th, 2004
8:00 pm
another quote:
'Vatican City - Masturbation is like owning a Ferrari and driving only in first gear, a senior Catholic theologian said in an article published Wednesday.

"Driving only in first gear, not only do you prevent the Ferrari expressing its full power, but gradually you wear it out and thereby ruin a masterpiece of technology," Father Giordano Muraro wrote in the magazine Vita Pastorale.'
Saturday, February 14th, 2004
10:39 pm
Ask me about treefruit
Friday, February 13th, 2004
11:58 pm
more on britpop?
so today i listened to:

-dog man star
-head music

-his 'n' hers
-different class
-this is Hardcore

-viva hate
-vauxhall and i

I spent a total of 3 hours listening, scattered over the day, devoting at least a minute to each track, and pretty much listening to 'head music' 'this is hardcore' and 'vauxhall and i' through. I also tried desperately to find some clips of the smiths online, as i couldn't find an album of theirs handy. it was interesting stuff. Listened to some dialogues with morrissey and johhny marr (note the 2 h's - not sure what the deal with that is, but thats how many people spelled it).

I have some more educated opinions now, though added frustrations.

I feel that morrissey is as homogenous as I feared, but the intelligence and craft of his songs is superior to that of the other things I was listening to. I feel the complexity of his vocal lines was also greater, but pulp's vocals seem to have more timbral variety, and suede seems more 'intense' (i think i'll just use band names for ease btw).

Early Suede seems much less based on the smiths as I was expecting - when i hear them, i hear much more of what the smiths perhaps were based on .. as confusing as that may be. When i listen to suede, i basically hear revamped bowie. It seems like bowie from the 70's (which is the best bowie you can have, to be sure) but produced in 90's fashion.

I mention 'early' as a big distinction for suede and pulp. Pulp was pretty groovy of the get go, and continued to develop. Suede seemed to have much more growth, though I don't judge for better or worse for either pulp or suede. But they seemed to move much more from their roots. Morrissey seemed much more set, which was a result of his involvement with another band - the struggle for creative dominance in the smiths, have his views opposing johhny marr's, perhaps made his sense of self very defined? All of the music seemed to become less subtle with age, which seems in contrast to the opinion that what is perhaps better about britpop than other genres being their muted textures.

I am conflicted on the issue of subtlety. My favorite gary numan is the earlier age numan, where the textures tend to seem thin, but every sound seems to have an infinitely rich surface of little crags and ridges and delightfully spirally thingies. The effect is simplicity with hidden depths. But the early britpop (not chronologically for the genre, but for the individual bands musics) doesn't appeal to me as much for some reason, and I think i may prefer their increasingly blunt, abrasive, and 'obvious' quality of their later works. This difference of emotions in similar situations bothers me immensely.

I tire of this post. If i think of more to say at somepoint, maybe i will. oh well.

most negative thing i can say: Often times today i felt i could be getting more out of listening to talking heads and bowie, and what i am listening to seems too plastic to digest

most positive thing i can say: Oh my god pulp is awesome. Oh. umm. i mean. I like this is hardcore just a little bit. Yeah. k.. I think i better leave now.
9:30 pm
To Kelli, We Salute
Kelli, we give you are greatest thanks. Indeed, we thank all those in the employ of texas roadhouse, champaign location. Mocking aside from mona for going to texas roadhouse, and the humorous aspect of this post, this is deadly serious.

Tonight, bobby and randy had the most delightful, incredible, perhaps sublime dining experience. Every want we had was catered to, the food was as delicious as it could be [as in well beyond the norm, a standard which is extremely high for the texas roadhouse] ... incredible. The only time we needed to ask for anything was when I [randy] wanted a to-go container - the rest of our words were spent in praise.

As I write this, I know that it is likely no one else will understand. I write this for myself, so that I will remember. God bless even that man who took bobby's salad plate away with ninja finesse as bobby consumed the last forkful of leafy quality.

May god see fit to keep this staff forever in restaurant heaven.
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