*we put the "mmm" in communism


This is the personal blog of Tim. Here, Tim writes on anything he has enough inspiration to finish a post on. That usually ends up being matters of science, pop culture, technology, religion, and philosophy.

This blog is around nine years old, which is over a third of Tim's current age. Back in 2003, it was called "Of Tim: Tim's life - or lack thereof", and it was as bad as you might expect the blog of a freshman in high school to be. Tim hopes that his writing is a little better, these days.

Tim welcomes any input that you, the dear reader, might have. Comments are very much appreciated, especially if you have a dissenting opinion. If you'd like to learn more about Tim, you might want to see his facebook or google+.

Also: Tim is a very avid consumer of various sorts of music. You may be interested in his playlists!

While I'm Gone...(O.o)
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I'm headed to Colorado tomorrow, I'll be back Tuesday (not next Tuesday) or Wednesday. I didn't get to all the site improvements I'd hoped to yesterday, and I probably won't get to them today. I'll conduct a list of all I did for you, not that you care. :P
  • Aligned top sidebar border and top post border
  • Made the main column wider.
  • Moved main column higher
  • Divided sidebar into 3 sections.
  • Added Profile section to sidebar.
  • Removed that dumb blogger image at the bottom.
  • Changed title from "Of Tim" to "And The Lack Thereof".
  • Made IE generally happier.
I also have a list of things I'm planning on doing in the future! Again, not that you care, but...
  • Get the profile area done.
  • Clean up my code a little more, it's good as is but could be better.
  • Find a new place to put the comments. I've found that the current place it out of the way, and easy to miss.
  • Improve the color I have set for the post dates and blog title.
  • Test out some different border styles.
  • Improve for IE, again.
  • Get a better statcounter.
And a little bit further in the future, once I've learned PHP and javascript...
  • Set up a server and host the blog on it.
  • Remove the archive.
  • Bring back the multiple style sheet interface (the red, green, and blue templates)
  • Make an option for automatically emailing new posts to you.
I've got a lot of hope for this thing, I've been really enjoying slowly improving it throughout time. I'm glad to see how much I've improved this thing. It looked pretty darn horrid back in the day.

Anyways, I have some packing, and some burning to do. I need some music for the trip, and I don't have a MP3 CD player (I really need one), so I have to convert everything to .wav and burn it, which just isn't cool. Oh well. While I'm gone, go check out Aireline, Built to Spill, Muse, and Sunny Day Real Estate. Good stuff. Off I go to pack.
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All That and a Bag of Chips! (O.o)
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This week would not end. I beat it with sticks, clubs, pencils, and shoelaces, but it would not relent. I've had about 25 less hours of sleep than I need this week, and it's been so very rough. The week in totality has sucked - at least three teachers are highly displeased with me, my grades have been awful (it's weird, I have like an A+ in global and english, but i doubt i'm even passing in chem and math), and I've just been perpetually tired. I can say this for a fact: I have never experienced a week this long.

Tuesday was the Bible Study, which again failed to meet muster. I've promised Daniel I'll go another time before I give up on it, so we shall see how things go in March. Wednesday was...nothing. Thursday was ski club, fun stuff, except for some damage I did to my trachea. I was attempting to grab Colette's poles using my poles, and I pushed down a little hard and one of my poles stuck in the ground, and before I knew it I had stopped myself going rather fast by having a pole jammed into my throat. That hurt. Of course, in my delerium, I fell over standing up once I got to the bottom. Today was Ben's birthday (technically tomorrow, but today was more convenient). We went to his house and laughed at Sho's chick flick, The Notebook. The name is bad enough, but the movie was worse. This was either a case of major plot revision at the last minute, awful editing, or just retarded plot transition. Let me describe the general mood of this story.

Ben: "Something needs to explode."
Tim: "Why hasn't anyone died yet?"
Sho: "..."

[queue main character lamenting the absence of his girlfriend]
Narrator: After she moved, he sent a letter to her every day. After one year with no response, he gave up, and became an ensign.
[queue main character running across a battle field with lots of explosions for 10 seconds, and finds his best friend dead. without providing any emotional response and experiencing no emotional change, he returns home, his dad gives him a lot of money, dies, and he begins building a house]

This is in the space of 1 minute, and I am not exaggerating. Even though it was bad, it was most hilarious to mock. I call that a happy birthday.

As for the rest of today, it's been really, really nice. Not having school is just so delightful, I cannot express the emotion therein. I was watching Jonothan play Halo 2 (he played it for about 18 hours straight yesterday, he couldn't sleep, so he just played), and he's improved a lot. If you know my brother, he's not a real gaming kind of guy, and we've never really shared a joy in playing these things, so it's cool to see him get excited at learning and getting better at a game I really enjoy. We were also playing LotR Trivial Pursuit, while watching the LotR: Fellowship EE, with my dad, too. I haven't played a board game with my dad in....ages. The last time we did was at least 4 years ago, so that was really nice. My dad went to bed, so Jonothan and I are in the midst of a game of Monopoly (we're taking a break at the moment).

So, at 4:31 in the morning, Jonothan owned me in Monopoly. Took us three hours. Off to sleep I go.
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Justice, the Product of Perspective (O.o)
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An arguable statement, but at least partially true in a non-religious context. My recent days have been overly sober, not as spontaneous or as wantonly enjoyable as I normally keep them. Jonothan's time here has been a reality check for me - recently, I'd begun reducing life to simple equations, which, if worked, Einstein would have found them already. Jonothan told me how the big things right now are really actually small - no matter how mature or how smart you handle matters or approach them. A quick glance at my past and those of my friends has proven his point. I've been struggling with this in how I treat these seemingly big matters - should I treat them with any less delicacy or ferocity? My postulate: no. They're big matters now because there are no matters bigger than those I'm facing - you take things in proportion.

With this in mind, I was blown away when Rachel called Jonothan on his cell, and he picked up. When he was done with a short conversation with her, I asked him why he picked up. His reply: "We're adults.". You have no idea how much that scares me - I'm afraid to pick up the phone when my lawn mowing customers are calling to get me to mow their lawn one more time. I guess this is where that proportion thing comes in.

What do you do, though, when something out of proportion enters in the fray? Amanda told me about a friend of hers, who's being abused, but nothing can be done because he's about to turn 18, and his parents are habitual liars. It's times like that I wonder "where's the justice? no, really, where'd it go?". When all I can do is pray for him, I'm reminded that God does have a plan here, and that plan may not include me saving the day. A frustrating concept, to be sure.

Saturday night Daniel came over and we watched the rest of Fullmetal, talked, etc.. Sunday was normal, Benjamin came over, we played around in GIMP (I made a few that I found particularly cool - 1, 2, and 3). Today, I stayed home sick (I do have that flu, you kn0w). I woke up to Jonothan handing me a plate of bacon and an egg + cheese + english muffin thing (they'd call them egg McMuffin's at McDonald's, but I dunno what they're actually called).

Beyond that, my musical tastes have been expanded a little bit - I've grown keen on two bands recently. Aireline and Muse (I doubt anyone's heard of the former, but Paul's heard of Muse, so maybe someone else has heard of it). In any case, I still like the techno, I just like some other stuff too. *cough*
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A Darker Side of the Moon (-.-)
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Jonothan got here last night, hearing him detail all that's happened wasn't exactly uplifting. The thing I didn't realize is that there's a reason he's going to Iraq. He moved to North Carolina to be with Rachel. He wouldn't be going otherwise. He ended up with nothing, and then some. We laughed at some of the really stupid stuff about playing games online (I'll explain later, Daniel), though, which was kind of nice. One of the recurring themes that came up while talking to him which kind of dragged my mood down was how all of high school is just a trifle, relationships end up becoming nothing. This wasn't new information, but being told that the vast majority of those I know, unless they're really true friends, are just going to fade away once high school is over. Hopefully this really...depressed and nasty feeling will go away, I hate it, I want it gone. It sort of feels like an intruder, it broke in during the night and won't leave. I guess the seed was planted while talking to a friend of mine (who's now 24 or 25) a few weeks ago. I think I may spend too much time talking to those who've been through high school.

Friday was spent at Amy's house (that was just a little weird, 5 girls, one guy) for a few hours after waiting for Gwen to finish her Spanish test. I got to meet her teacher, Mrs. Craig, whom I must admit was a very cool teacher. I was talking to her about my German class - or lack thereof. I didn't mention the name, but she seemed to have noticed the same things as I have, which was rather uplifting.

I've ranted about her before, you don't need to hear me again. Meanwhile, I've caught the beginnings of the flu. Jonothan and Brian were up playing Burnout till 4:00 (meaning, in my room) so I didn't get to sleep nearly as soon as I would have liked.

One last thing, which is Daisy. She just galloped down the basement stairs, which she's not supposed to do (bad for her bones). As I tried to shoo her back upstairs, she fell back down (this dog's getting old, she's 13 now). Upon further inspection of the dog, I noticed one of her paws was worn down and sore, she has two lumps of irritated skin on her legs. I keep telling mom and dad to take her to the vet, but they just say "We're working on it.", and that's that. I realized why Daisy was so excited to see Jonothan (she's been following him everywhere). Jonothan's always been the one to treat Daisy the best - he takes her on walks and pets her a lot, generally just a little more attentive. I try and do that, but it's really time consuming. It's not that Daisy's mistreated, but that she doesn't get the attention she deserves. Normally the amount of attention we give her is fine, she's happy, we're happy, it's all good. I guess as she gets older it's not enough.
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Perfect Squares (^^)
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Who knew something could be so square?

That video contains possibly the most square piece of cloth ever to touch this earth. It's more square than 3-piece suits and 36. I won't go on so as to keep this post short, I've been posting too much lately.

Two things about Jonothan: he's arriving tomorrow night (he's driving all day tomorrow), and his car situation is somewhat improved. He had to shell out the money to the towing company to get the car back, but the tenant who had it towed is being emo. Real emo. The landlord is a pretty cool guy, and sending the tenant through the runs for "giving a guy who's fighting for our country such a hard time". He's a real patriot, I say, and I give him my props for the day. The landlord is mad enough at this girl that he pulled out the lawyers to get her to write a simple check. He calmly requests that she pays, and she goes ballistic. After this phone call, Jonothan gets home to find three cop cars outside his place, investigating claims of death threats from him to this tenant (whom he's never contacted, seen, met, he didn't even know her name before today). He won't have to be around to see the mess through, thanks to his landlord.

Skiing was excellent. Add several adjectives adverbs on to that, including but not limited to: excellentely, awesomely, amazingly, superbly, wonderfully, hugely, highly, very, really, exceedingly. School was also very good - I ended up not having to do the German conversation (by grace of God alone, I swear). Today, was a good day.
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His Car, His Girlfriend, and His Job (...)
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Jonothan's on a roll. First his car is TOWED (he found out that it was in fact not stolen, but towed at the consent of an intendant, even though he had permission to leave the car there, but he's now fighting some beaurocrats over it). Then his girlfriend (fiance, but the title fitted better with girlfriend) walks out on him. Now he's getting an all-expenses payed trip to Iraq.

I'm not worried, although it did help for me to have previous knowledge of this. Eavesdropping on Christopher's conversations (not really eavesdropping, but I had my headphones on while he was in the room...) has saved me some shock value. When I say previous knowledge, I knew it was gonna happen a year and a half ago, when he was checking out the prospects on National Guard units. My parents, of course, were not informed.

Like I said, I'm not worried. I know his chances are quite good (he has like a .00001% chance of even being injured) due to the marvelous army medical technology and the now somewhat safer Iraq he'll be heading to. I'd be a lot more comfortable with this if I knew he was going there to make a difference. Christopher's accounts left me with little faith in our Army's officers and tacticians. I don't disagree with the war, for the most part. I'm not stupid enough to try and think we'd get oil out of this, but other facts on the case don't match up.

Since I'm already into this post, I might as well account for my day. School was not worth detailing, but I stayed after school with a few others, but I got bored after Amy left, so I found myself being rather unenthused to do much of anything. I went to Gwen's house until I got picked up, which was an hour or two ago. A rather unenthusiastic day.


Looks like Jonothan's gonna be on Convoy Patrol. He'll be accompanying convoys going in and aorund Iraq. He's also gonna try and get him and his stuff up here, meaning I'll see him before we leave for Colorado - possibly as early as Monday.
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I was prompted to do this from a post on Eileen's blog, but for different reasons than hers. This was also encouraged by an introductory thing we did as we're starting Macbeth in English. We listened to famous audio clips from musicians who died young, while showing pictures of them and explaining how they died. I mused to myself how much it would suck to be them. I've never wanted fame or fortune (although money for the random things in life would be great), just from examples like all these people who chased after really retarded stuff in a vain search for happiness. I didn't make this to mock those who have died in useless pursuits of satisfaction, though.

As I was pondering a comment to Eileen's post, I got thinking a little bit. I've never really talked about death on here before, I figured it was long enough and fit for this context. Death has never really scared me. I look forward to it, in some ways, but that desire comes out of my faith, not from some emo self-preservation issue. In the same way, death around me doesn't really scare me either. It may be a callous look on things, but I get tired of people saying the same things over and over again when it comes to others dying. National or international tragedies leave me highly unsympathetic due to the reactions I see around me. Very few people actually care, most pretend, or care out of obligation. This is not to say they shouldn't care, but some elements of the facade could be done without. For me, dropping a dollar in the bucket for a charity just doesn't make me feel like I've done my duty to help those in tragedy. I remember the school-run charities during Middle School when 9-11 hit, and giving a few dollars to get the neat-o red-white-n'-blue ribbons they were handing out for donations of more than 10 cents. Perhaps it's the only thing I CAN or COULD do, but it doesn't change that "I want to do something a little more" feeling. I doubt that will ever change. When/if I donate, I don't do it out of a guilty conscience, but out of duty and the knowledge that it would help.

Back to the real point. Death. I don't know about most of you, but death just doesn't phase me. I don't hold a lot of attachment to this life - most of it is spent working so that I can rest. Ironic, no? If anyone I was remotely attached to died, I'd be sad, don't mistake what I'm saying for a lack of caring. What I would NOT do, is make bad resolutions to not make the same mistake most people do, which is not to live life to their potential. I'm not a fan of cheesy (no matter how dire or set in stone you may seem at the time) resolutions, either. The only thing I fear? Pain. A gun to the head doesn't scare me, but drowning has the potential to make me quiver. Why? It would be pain that can't even be soothed or aided, unstoppable, while you get to contemplate what happens to you in three more minutes. Another good example for this? Cancer. Cancer doesn't scare me. The treatment does. The stories I hear about chemotherapy and radiation therapy really don't sound pleasant to me. Sure, the cancer itself aint a walk in the park, but I somehow doubt it would cause the same kind of pain.

Enough of my musings, go do something else.
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When Three Doors Is/Are Not Enough! (...)
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I just got back from "bible study" with Daniel and Benjamin, which ended up pretty boring, but may supposedely get better next time. I might go again, we'll see. We didn't really do anything (nobody had anything prepared). :-/ I spent most of the time daydreaming while they argued over random stuff and asked dumb questions.

Today actually didn't go really great, it didn't quite hit me till now. I failed (actually failed, -65% failed) two quizzes, one for chem and one for math. My grades came in, and for the first time in my life, I am not on the Honor roll. I had a 3.06. That's the lowest GPA I've ever gotten. Definately not a high point in my academic history. I can't even remember how to spell correctly, though that's mostly due to sleep deprevation. Gah. My dad hauled our kitchen screen door into my room so he could fix it, but hasn't finished the job yet. For now, it's sitting there, waiting for me open a portal to the netherworld, where moose and cows roam freely.

Monday was far better, as it was spent with Gwen and Amy after school. We walked to Gwen's piano lesson, while Amy and I sort of did homework. She has this thing about not being able to study while I'm around, I can't figure it out. It's a strange occurance, to be sure (insert generic "*grin*" statement). My legs were actually really hurting that day from doing some 150 squats on Saturday night, and they're still a bit tender. I also had Scouts that night, which was equally lacking in interestingness.

The other important thing on the list that really hasn't been helping things is Jonothan's current plight. He got back from his 7-week retraining (boot camp all over again), to find that his car had been stolen, and then Rachel walks out on him. In case you didn't know, they were engaged, and recently started seriously discussing details. This really makes me sad, not just for Jonothan, but that Rachel would do this. I liked Rachel, she was a nice. Definately not cool of her to just drop that kind of bomb after leading him on like that. Maybe I don't know the whole story, but either way, Jonothan's not doing great. It makes me look forward to this winter break trip to Colorado even more.
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Set to the Tune of "Commercialization"
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The TV is currently spewing out various noises and images related to football and commericals, as I download techno and talk to the few people on IM. I'm not a huge football fan - I can enjoy it in good company, and I know how the game works, but I don't take time out of my days to watch it. I'm at least into it enough to be able to have a short conversation about it with the pizza delivery guy.

[geek] I spent all of Friday and Saturday building two alternate styles for the Boy Scout website I'm helping with. They wanted some alternate ideas for design, but I was faced with the issue of sorting through code I hadn't written, and doing it in VI under the unix file system (which I wasn't very familiar with). It took me about 12 hours to do, since I had to learn how to use chmod (all the files I ssh'd over to the server started with no read/write privilages), and then because of some confusion with the divs and paragraphs, it took me a few hours to figure out the percentages I needed to set (which were never really up to snuff). I also had to figure out a lot of stuff in GIMP (aka Photoshop), as I've never really been proficient in that. My second style didn't work due to some problems in the PHP (that's all I could find to be the problem in the 20 minutes I had to finish it). Definately fun though, learned a lot of stuff. [/geek]

Nothing else of astounding importance has really happened, though. I'm downloading a whole LOT of techno right now (14 different albums, amounting to about 30 or 40 tracks). During this process though, I've noticed something really, really creepy. All the techno forums (where I download the techno) are like...robotic, sort of like a ghost town. So far even the forum formats are the same (they both use phpBB, but the same style, different colors though). I've been 4 different places, all the same (including, which is the general go-to place for techno). All the music is in the same format - one track for each "CD", with a 2 kb CUE file (i can't figure out what these do), and usually there's an option for a torrent or for direct dl. Maybe it's just the industry standard, I don't know.

Colette burned me the Phantom of the Opera soundtrack. She had me listening to it on the bus home from ski club, it's pretty good. Some of it's a little too...singy, but it's not bad as far as musicals go. Ski club was pretty good, it was nice and warm, so there was room to have some fun. They had signs up telling people to hug the people monitoring the ski lifts. I was running around stealing everybody's poles (mostly Colette's, cause she was the easiest to steal from :P).

And, I can't think of much else interesting to say, so I shall return to looking around for Superbowl commercials.
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Perspective, the Product of Intelligence (O.o)
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I just read Ben Stein's final article for a column he did on E!. Not knowing he was not only a Republican, but a Christian, I was rather pleasantly surprised as I read this. I have great respect for Stein in general, so I found this rather interesting. A nice read if you don't mind the Christian "propoganda" as some put it.

Stein's Reflections

Today was really....relaxing, a little boring. I didn't have school due to Peer Mediation (I'll explain in a moment). After school I journeyed with Amy, Gwen, Kerry, and Paul to the Library, where we attempted homework and lesser forms of slave labor. I was shown Ranma (....I think I'll stick to anime, manga isn't my thing...) and we parted from Amy and Gwen and had pizza, then Paul and I shuffled up to my house. The walk up was annoying, as everything was frozen. Speaking of which, our school is still iced, but they keep you from going on the ice. Rather frustrating.

Peer Mediation was generally boring, I don't completely agree with their ideals, but I severely doubt this will go anywhere. The concept of Mediation is rather simple. A Mediator gets two people who have some beef with eachother, and acts like a moderator. The Mediator makes sure certain rules are applied to the discussion (no interrupting, flaming, basic stuff), and will interject at points with reflections or observations to assist the argument. It's completely reliant on the two people being smart enough to solve the problem. The Mediator isn't allowed to have an "agenda" or try and push them towards a solution. Not my style, (I discussed this with Kerry during the boring parts) as I believe humans are naturally evil, and therefore not inclined to come to a proper solution. Anyways, the actual meeting was better than being in school, but not very fun. At first it was good, we were having interesting discussions, had some nice snacks, did a little ping-pong, but it eventually degraded into bad demonstrations (I mean BAD, like, not even good analogies) and concepts that were so boring and so easy to grasp, that I did fall asleep for a few minutes (hey, it was about the time I would have been having Chemistry). Ah well, it's worth missing two days of school for.


Your Element Is Earth

You excel at planning and strategizing.
You could be a champ at chess or Survivor.

Well grounded, you are able to be realistic and rationalize.
On the inside, you have a hard core. It's tough to phase you.

You are super productive, and you are able to think anything through.
Focused and super charged, your instincts are a good guide for your next step.

What's Your Element?


I like quizzes, they're like a way to measure my progression and how I grow up. That is, good quizzes. Bad quizzes aren't. This one is pretty accurate...that's what I feel like anyways. I used to be really wishy-washy. Every day after school I had to have three hours of "me-time", no less. I was always complaining, whining, I could go on and on. I feel far more stable now, in control of how I feel and understanding why I feel whatever I feel. Recently I've spent a lot of time talking about all sorts of things with a lot of my friends. As I've talked, I notice I'm far more open-minded. I used to be highly averted to changing how I view anything (politically especially), but that's changed a little bit. Having an open mind exposed my ignorance and lack of knowledge in many areas, it forced me to beef up on those areas. It made me a lot stronger in the end.

Most of all, I'm confident. That's probably the only noticeable outer change to most of you. In reality, I haven't changed as much as I make it seem. I feel it, though, and it makes life a lot more....interesting.

[/random deep inner thoughts]


Just to make some clarification here, all those reflections were NOT based off the quiz. More clarification: I enjoy quizzes for the questions. Those are the reflective part. The results are usually nice because they have pretty pictures. Pictures define a good quiz result. Are we clear? Good. Don't make me have an EDITACULAR EDITING FRENZY.
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