Sunday, January 30, 2005 :: 6:45 AM

Long time no post


I know it has been quite some time since you've heard from me (in blog format, anyhow), and I've been trying to accomplish various things today. The blogging hour (around 3:45 AM) has rolled around, so it's prime time to do things other than sleep, clearly.

Now that my posts have grown increasingly infrequent, I have more difficulty trying to remember what things I might have done since my last post, so I'm sure you're going to miss a lot--what a shame. Rather than trying to approach this from some logical, ordered standpoint, I'm just going to jump in, and basically produce a several-paragraph long stream of literary vomit from my fingertips. Don't be tremendously shocked if you feel disoriented, uncomfortable, or dirty at any point.

I'm now about two weeks into second semester here at the U of MN. I have a new class schedule again. There are a few points of the schedule that are really killing me. I'm actually quite displeased with how early I have to get up on Tuesday and Thursday (around 10:15) for my Intro to Theater course. The class is additionally annoying me through the fact that my TA has already assigned four papers (two due last week, two this week), when my sources informed me that this was to be a very easy course to fulfill one of my few remaining LibEd (liberal arts education) requirements. Additionally, my nighttime schedule this semester is absolutely abysmal in regards to my TV schedule. On Tuesday, I miss Scrubs for German Folklore, and on Wednesday I miss Smallville, Lost, and Alias for my damn Intro to Film Study course. To make matters worse, I have to get up early Thursday, so staying up late to watch the downloaded copies I get results in about four hours of sleep Wednesday night. Bleh.

While I'm in bitch mode, I'll complain a bit about my Computer Science 2031 class. This is Yet Another&tm; math class disguised as a Computer Science course. So far we've gone over advanced taylor series expansions, proofs, and derivations, and other various annoyingly long summations. To make matters worse, the class assigns weekly homework :'(. I'm really starting to hate this university's CS curriculum. At least we're getting into a real language this semester (C) in the other CS class, though (sort of). Granted, Java in second semester of freshman year wasn't horrible, but this could actually be useful. I should really pay attention, or something. (Although, the professor seems to be approximately useless, and already announced that he doesn't particularly plan to cover much C in class. Hm.)

p14nd4 banner

I probably spent a solid 30-45 minutes tonight (around 2 AM, of course) making this ad banner for my site. It's now linked in about a 1/20 rotation on, so I'm sure the hits are just about to pour in :P.

Anyway, to jump back a ways, I had my finals for first semester in December. Three out of my four finals were pretty easy, but Physics 2 for Sci/Eng was pretty killer. Despite that, I ended up doing alright: B+ in Physics 1302, Computer Science 2011, and Math 5248, and a B in Statistics 3021. I got pretty horribly raped on homework on the last three of these courses, and well on the tests (almost aced my two tests in Statistics), but they kinda balanced out. I moved back home for break on the Wednesday night before Christmas (we're forced to move out of the res halls for break), and ended up working until about 3 AM that night already, only to be back in the office by 8 AM the next morning. Christmas went fairly well though. We celebrated with my mother's extended family at her sister's house, which is a bit of a change from the past ~18 years when it has been held at my family's house. Regardless, it went well, and I think everyone had a good time. My immediate family exchanged gifts and had brunch at our house the next morning, followed by a relaxed, lethargy-filled day in pajamas. I think we had a dinner with my Father's extended family a day or two later, although he was too sick to attend, ironically (and unfortunately).

Then, Monday, my three weeks of personal hell began around 7 AM. When I was at school, I got up around 11:30 AM; now that I was on "break," I had to get up at 7, and then work ~10-14 hours every day, Monday through Friday. All told, I think I ended up working about 175 hours over break. I two partial salvations during the period: Adrianne (a friend from school) stayed at my house for a week (S-Sa), and Amanda (girlfriend) came to the cities for a weekend. It was really great to have Adrianne around for a week, because she actually gave me something enjoyable to do after work (foosball, ping pong, scrabble, alias, just hangin' out, etc.). To make herself just that much more fantastic, she ended up picking out/up three pairs of pants from Banana Republic and two button-down shirts from Gap for me, with her employee discount applied on top of sale prices, so I got it all for $80 (and I didn't even have to go shopping!). Unfortunately for Amanda's stay, she A. came with her parents, because she B. had a ski race Saturday and Sunday. We still had a good time, though.

In other good news, I ended up talking to Betsy (my ex-girlfriend from 12th grade and the following summer) rather extensively over break (probably more in one night than we had spoken in the preceding 14 months), and hung out with her (and other people--not alone, heh) one night. I wouldn't go so far to say that we're "chummy," but we've spoken since then, too, much more casually and easily than before. In one of these more recent conversations, though, I had the unfortunate distinction of being one of the early people she told that she broke up with her boyfriend she met first semester. While I am truly sad for her, that it happened, she seemed to be dealing with it fairly well, and I was bittersweetly surprised that she thought of me, to talk to about it.

I found out tonight that one of my Linux servers at work got semi-hacked by some worm/script going around. That was a pretty crappy realization, but I think I've got the situation taken care of, and no significant damage was done, that I can tell.

Brad (my roommate) broke his hand snowboarding about a week ago. He ended up going home to Rochester, MN to get a screw put in the bone to help it heal, and now takes Percocet. His main motivation for getting off it, though, is to resume habits of excessive drinking, which is ill advised in combination with the drug. Good for him...or something.

I think I have an "in" to the sweet residential apartment I'm hoping to get into for next year. A guy I know, who lives there now, is potentially ditching his current roommate, and is probably willing to request me as a roommate for next year. With the way that the U of MN does their housing sign-up, he'll get first round priority for his current room, or at worst second round priority for a different room in the same building, and then by requesting me as a roommate specifically, gives me some added priority when my third round for residents having lived on campus for more than one year comes around. I think it's only about $400 more, per semester, than my current room, and I think I'll cut my meal plan down a fair amount, which might save a little money.

Speaking of money, I have about $30 left to my name right now (sound familiar from my last post?), and I've overdrawn my checking (check card) account twice in the past week or so. Fortunately, though, I think I'll be getting a paycheck fairly soon, from the work I did over winter break. In addition to that, I hope to get all my W2 tax forms around the same time, so I can file my taxes as soon as possible. I think this will be my third year of filing my own taxes. Ever since my first year, I've been fairly excited to file taxes, because too much money gets withheld from my paychecks, which translates to a sizable tax refund (although, that's probably at least a month away from reaching me).

Anyhow, I should probably get to bed about now. I keep meaning to be productive, but I have tremendous difficulty actually doing so. Maybe tomorrow will be better (doubtful, though).

Good night.


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