*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!

An Excuse to Eliminate Evidence
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I truly do hope you all had a merry Christmas. I am enjoying mine with a plate full of steak (cooked by yours truly). I have some crappy Christmas music going from a random stream on Winamp. Christmas spirit is abound.

This Christmas was far less magical than it usually is. I remember last year, with everyone going "I don't have that Christmas spirit anymore.", and me going "Woo, Christmas is teh woot!". This year, I suppose, that feeling has struck me. Perhaps it's been the abysmal school year thus far, or the fact that we had school on the 23rd (a sure-fire way to suck the Christmas spirit out of the world).

Anyways, a list. A bulleted list. Or perhaps a numbered list?
  1. Gummi Bears, Nerds Rope (i love this stuff), Pez, and Good & Plentys (Stocking)
  2. Wallet (rents)
  3. Ski Goggles (rents)
  4. The Onion "Fanfare for the Area Man" Day-by-Day Calender (Jonathan)
  5. Headphones (previous described, Jonathan)
  6. Cell Phone (rents)
  7. Far Cry: Instincts (Jonathan)
  8. Call of Duty 2 (rents)
  9. Spartan: Total Warrior (technically this and CoD2 were purchased by me, with money I received, but this is a minute detail)
  10. Skis (rents)
This post has actually be about half-done, sitting as a draft for about 4 days, but I figured I should post, to maintain these some form of contact with the readership until school starts again. I'll rave about Call of Duty 2 and Far Cry: Instincts later, and complain about Spartan: Total Warrior too. I hope you all had a good Christmas.


Thought this was a really cool quote, albeit random:

It is not bigotry to be certain we are right; but it is bigotry to be unable to imagine how we might possibly have gone wrong.
- GK Chesterton

Yo! Banana Boy
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I was gonna write something more than a paragraph, but I have to start the Physics soon to finish before midnight, and I want to get some F.E.A.R. in. Shut it.

I got home today and JonAthan (he's back!) was downstairs with Brian. I wanted to play F.E.A.R., but the hockey would disturb my focus, so I pulled out the headphones, but when I handed them to JonAthan, he rebroke them (i glued the ears back to the frame, they're so bootleg), and my already very tired mood was kind of sent further down. After giving him a "..." look, I went upstairs to find the superglue. I come back down, and Brian is doing his absolute best to break the headphones in more pieces, and was mostly succesful in doing so. I start glaring at him, but JonAthan starts prodding me with a wrapped present.

I now have a brand new pair of Altec Lansing (read: not Sony) headphones, very sturdy, with a mic (although at the moment I can't get it to talk at any reasonable noise level). That kind of brought my day around. I have had an otherwise not good day.

Where should I work? I haven't checked with Ian yet, 'cause I'm not sure I want a desk job (even if it's better pay) after being in school for 6 or 7 hours. I mean, if nothing else comes around, I'll go for it, but I was really up on the idea of being a busboy for Joe's. Any ideas?

EDIT: I hear the school delay got approved. Hooray! Too bad I'll only experience a year of it.

EDIT: Snap, today's getting better. Pennsylvania judge owns ID!
Estuans Interius
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I have never been more scared to play a game, ever. F.E.A.R. is just so scary. I'm not one for horror movies or games, ever. In fact, I really don't like them (mostly because I don't discount the existence of the unholy supernatural), not that I can't sit through one without crying, but really. It probably stems from me picking up a copy of Resident Evil 2 my brother had brought home, and subsequently having nightmares for two weeks straight. I was seven years old, give me a break. It's also why I won't ordain my gamecube with a copy of Resident Evil 4.


Like I was saying, F.E.A.R. is just insane. It's scarier than Doom 3, but then again, Doom 3 wasn't scary after an hour of playing it. I withstand the sheer fright that is this game because it's just really fun and really cool. The gameplay is really good, it's so satisfying, well balanced, plenty challenging, it's just awesome. The literal pools of blood, exploding corpses, intermittent flashes of dead people and such are really scary, but the incredibly well done AI is so worth it. The AI, man. They run around you, they know the map, they hide behind stuff, they roll, they jump, they ambush, just so well designed. Wort.

Anyways. As some of you know, I discovered Ruby on Rails the other day, and got all excited by their demos, thinking I could easily start running this here blog completely on my server without using Wordpress. I spent three hours ripping my hair out trying to just figure out what the documentation wanted from me, then realizing it was five years out of date, and nothing they told me to do would work. Beyond that, I learned that Ruby is really not a good language anyways - it doesn't do anything that Perl or PHP can't easily do alone. I was displeased. I'm trying to learn another language in addition to Java - C++ is the obvious first choice, but I don't want to run it through Cygwin, and the Eclipse plugin is finnicky, but we'll see. I'm thinking Perl or Python would be good to learn, but it's not real important.


That snow day was indeed a blessing. I used it well, I think. Ben, Zach, and I went downtown (with some intermittent snowball fights, and falling down stairs) to go present shopping with money I didn't have, which was fun in its own right. That wasn't before playing a rousing game of Rise of Nations in which I reasserted my authority over Paul (after a shameful loss). This also wasn't after an interesting birthday party at Paul house, which there are pictures for.

In important news, the Patriot Act got owned! I am pleased about this. Something I've kind of noticed, is that the media spins everything into party politics. The loss of the Patriot Act is somehow a loss for Republicans. I don't get it. It means people didn't like it, and that the majority has won, nothing else. Then again, I don't care about politics enough to sit down and try and reason through why there's always been two parties in our political system, and I'm not getting a degree in Political Science to find out. At least the act got shot down.
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I really, really, really, really, really want a snow day tomorrow. Like, man. Prospects are good - the weather seems to be quite right. But I don't want to get my hopes up. Judith Pastel is a nasty woman.

The kind of woman that goes home to an unheated and unfurnished mansion at night. The kind that eats a bowl of gruel, and then sleeps on the cold floor. The kind that opens the closet to a dozen sets of the same black and white suit, with half a dozen pairs of the same black shoes, and a matching jacket and gloves for those days where the snow is colder than her icy heart. The kind that, on Thanksgiving, doesn't eat turkey, but eats tofurkey, with unsalted, unbuttered, lumpy mashed potatoes. Judith Pastel never went to school, she never grew up. Her mother died in labor from expelling a full grown woman, and her father just said "omg" and promptly joined the local Communist party, never to be seen again. Truly, this woman can bring a tear to the eye of even the most stout hearted. The only man known to withstand the horror that is this woman? Jack Thompson.

*rolls d20 for snow day*
Bagel-Man, DXII
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I completely lied about doing that monitor. In a timely manner, anyways. I lack the motivation to do it now, but I do have the motivation to go play Rise of Nations. Feel unloved.

So, things of importance! Martial arts. I believe I've decided on Judo and Taekwondo, which will result in 6 hours of training a week (2 on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday), which I look forward to starting in February. I hadn't really considered it before, but I got thinking about it yesterday, and it seems to be quite a good idea. I may take Kendo (true swordmanship, not to ever be conufsed with the pansy art of fencing) over the summer, to add to the mix. This hasn't been set in stone, but I'm really liking this idea, it'll give me something to do, you know, that's productive and healthy. I've had way too much free time, and I need to crack down on that to keep focus. I'm hoping to be pretty busy next semester, with Ski Club going on at the same time.

And then, just to mix things up ever more, I'm going to Joe's tomorrow to pick up an application as a busboy (the dudes that clean tables). Supposedly the dude is pretty laid back, doesn't overwork his employees. Minimum wage, plus a percentage on tips, results in a little less than fifty bucks a night. If I do that two nights a week (Friday and Saturday, maybe take a day out of Judo occasionally), that keeps a reasonable amount of cash around so that I don't have to mooch off of people all the time. Maybe even pay people the money that I owe them. Ah, the dreams. If that doesn't work out, I'll check with Ian to see if anything is possible. The possibilities, though...

[edit: i was too late, it appears. time to check with Ian! if that doesn't work out, i'll figure something up.]

I could pay for things...

like haircuts.

Hey, speaking of haircuts, I just happened to get one of those today. I'm actually displeased with it. The woman was practically scraping my head raw, and cut it far shorter than I told her to. The result? Really short hair. It'll grow to the desired length in like a week or two, but for now, it is not so great. It doesn't look bad, necessarilly, just not good. Bad enough for Jen to bark at it, anyways. And yes, the sticky is back.
I'll Get You, Sho.
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PSAT Scores:
  • Critical Reading: 62
    • 89% higher than all juniors
    • SAT range of 560-710
  • Math: 59
    • 78% higher than all juniors
    • SAT range of 520-690
  • Writing Skills: 60
    • 82% higher than all juniors
    • SAT range of 480 to 670
  • Overall: 86%
I'm pretty happy, but my mom immediately felt the need to shoot me down. Recently, she's started working for the Ithaca College admissions department, and she promptly informed me that those scores aren't enough to get into Ithaca College. Not only do I not want to go to Ithaca College (i have several times informed her of this), but I'm going to TC3, where the SAT becomes null and void. I'm taking it because it's fun, it's a cool way to gague where I'm at. I think I did pretty well.

The Math portion I am disadvantaged as I'm not at the level needed to take the SAT (probably ended up in 4 or 5 questions wrong total), and I screwed up the Writing Skills by getting that last 7 or the last 9 questions wrong, due to being really rushed. I should have omitted them, but I think I did well anyways.

And courtesy of Daniel, I shall direct you to one of the funnier sites I've visited in my time, but a creepily accurate charge against Christendom in America. Meet Landover Baptist Church.

Finally, apparantly I've been tagged.
  1. I've been listening to the techno track from the next-gen party for many hours. In fact, it's looped over 550 times now. So good.
  2. I've got five pairs of old glasses sitting in the droor (edit: i've been informed this is actually "drawer"?) next to me. That's over $1500 of glass and metal, not including the cost of visits to the opthomologist.
  3. I have no yearbooks. None. Nada.
  4. I used to know disgustingly large amounts of geography. I would, for fun, go through this computer encyclopedia where you could click on a country on the map, and it would give you lots of information, play the national anthem, and other things. In fact, I placed second in a geography bee in third grade.
  5. I owned, or have owned, approximately $2,409.49 in video games. That's around 53 games. That's not all of them, either.
I don't really want to tag anyone, but I guess I'll tag Paul. Woo.

And now, to start this CS project.
You Are SO Not Invited.
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I'm surprised that up to this point, not a single person has noted the lack of explanation of the asterisk lying in wait in the header. Once upon a time, before what I dub the "Great Harddrive Failure of 2005" and the resulting "Dark Age of the Internet", I had utilized this asterisk to note something of extreme importance. The issue here is that I have absolutely no idea what I had noted. I had originally planned to make a footer (the things that go below everything, thus why they are called footers, unless you're a CommuNazi). Nonetheless, I am nauseated and disgusted by your skills of examination. So much so that both my eyes are filled with angst, also known as blood.

So, I woke up this morning to my eyes telling me "we hate you". The meaning of this I didn't understand until I started experiencing exponentially increasing aches in the area of my head, and by third period, I had been informed that both of my eyes were completely bloodshot. After confirming this fact via a quick run to the mirror, I took my first visit to the nurse's office of the year, and slept rather peacefully for thirty minutes until my dad got me. The ride home was rather painful as the sun was out, and light to my head was the equivelant of mating in the manner of moose and rams (that is, to repeatedly bash your head against a hard object...not...the other things rams do...). After decorating the house a bit (i now have my silly mini tree in my room, it emits about 25 or 30W of happy), I again went to sleep, but not before playing a rousing game of Age of Empires II, which I'm sure most of you are familiar with. For those of you who aren't, skip this next part.


It's amazing how poorly memory serves to accurately define a staple of my youth. The game is ridiculously easy - I remember finding the computer insanely hard to beat even on the moderate setting, but using the Goths (whose special unit is the Huskarl, that has like 15 piercing armor, costs like nothing, and can be created in less than 3 seconds) I've managed to completely own without even a question of my authority. I generally just create my entire army of 100 in less than two minutes, and sweep the entire map in one or two runs. Before I have the resources for the massive recruitment, I create only enough to defend my base as well as my ally's. Whether this strategy would work in a real game, I don't know.

I now have the yearning to play Starcraft again - if I get any minor amounts of money this Christmas, I'll be certain to get the combo. It's probably down to ten bucks these days.


Various things (no bulleted list here, i'm afraid):

My parents somehow miraculously got me signed up for Ski Club, past the deadline. This is a highly good thing, as such a proliforous amount of people were going this year (as opposed to last year), missing out on the fun would just be no good.

I've finally, after like three months, gotten back in touch with a few of the people from camp. Christina and I have sent a few back and forth, and I got in touch with Zach, although I have still left the entirity of Ohio behind. With time, I'll get there, but for now, I'm a bum.

Things of humor (sorry, no bulleted list again):

If you check out Colette's Xanga, you'll see a post concerncing some silly face recognition software that compares your face (hur, hur) to that of a bunch of celebrities. I am proof that this thing is entirely broken. Just look. (grumble)

Two or three posts ago, I gave a little plug for Facebook, encouraging people to sign up. So, they did. I friended these people. And you know what happens? A pentagram, apparantly. My network of friends is one step away from symbolizing the devil. Ryan is the only thing stopping this. Insert fear here.

And finally, let's have some good times. The next gen is here, and everybody is celebrating. If you don't get that, I suggest you go watch four hours of press conferences from E3. Like me! I've been listening to the song from that thing for at least an hour now, it's so good.

Now, because cliches are in, I am creating a new status: the conventions of standard English in the titles. As long as cliches are in, there will be a conventions status monitor, which I will create for your pleasure tomorrow. Images shall be included! As soon as cliches are out, however, the status of the conventions will be neither in, nor out. As you can see, the conventions are obviously in (read: capitalization, grammar, punctuation). Dance Katuragi, DANCE!
Or Else!
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To start us off, let's have some humor. Speaking of a crowd of post-grad students visiting the tenant upstairs:

lemonadeyeti: go upstairs and throw bibles at them
salandarin: we've got at least ten in the house, i figure i can kill at least one, perhaps mame another
lemonadeyeti: maybe extra big bibles
salandarin: those are reserved for special times
salandarin: like for if jack thompson ever came over
lemonadeyeti: no, bad idea
lemonadeyeti: he absorbs bibles through his skin
lemonadeyeti: that's how he gets nutrition
salandarin: hmm, along with a diet of american patriotism, it is a volatile combination
lemonadeyeti: and jesus
salandarin: perhaps a sony executive?
lemonadeyeti: same thing
salandarin: no, they just beat up children in the alley
salandarin: saying something like "the power of capitalism compels you!"
lemonadeyeti: like jesus
salandarin: i will not dignify this analogy with affirmation or rejection
lemonadeyeti: i have pictures
salandarin: sony executives do not speak in slang
salandarin: they speak in lawyer
lemonadeyeti: like jesus
lemonadeyeti: i asked 8 ball
lemonadeyeti: "Is Jesus a Sony executive?"
lemonadeyeti: "Without a doubt."
lemonadeyeti: i am the winner

If you didn't understand that, I suggest reading up on the Wikipedia and Uncyclopedia articles for Sony and Jack Thompson. Journalism at its best.

I think we can move on from what I dub the "Comment Wars". I feel it was becoming so cliche, that it was hitting infinity, which is also a negative number, meaning it was both cliche and not cliche at the same time. This paradox is unacceptable, and not cliche.

And yes, I wrote the vast majority of that article on Jack Thompson. There was an article there before, but I just assimilated a large portion of it and rewrote every section, most from the ground up. It was fun - I think I'll write articles like that more often. I felt it was funny, not hilarious, but amusing by some standard. I'm sure Gwen won't agree, but Gwen was born in Outer Mongolia, I really doubt she's prepared to discuss this topic thoroughly.

As Paul would say "continue padding", and/or the lack thereof (note clever use of title - that's cliche).

There's a fight breaking out!
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I love my complete inconsistency with capitalization in the titles. I can never decide when to capitalize and when not to. Woe.

I devote my time tonight to the abomination that has become Two Chains and a Beagle. Ladies and gentlemen, if ever there were a detriment to the cause, this would be it. Containing blatant obscenities where certain females flock to boost their meaningless rank, TC&B has sunk to a low that only Sony could match. Accepting over a hundred mostly useless and meaningless remarks from the mass, and yet taking no action? This is unacceptable!

Readers, I urge you to petition for a removal of the root of the problem. How you go about doing this I care not, but as tempting as it may be to rally my readers to buff my ego in the form of comments, I shall not sink to that low. I already unabashedly advertise myself and mock those inferior to me, I need not sink to a level that the free market demands. This may be capitalism at work, but I am no socialist!

Truly, any believer in a fair internet economy will support this campaign. If you don't, then you may be a shameless groupie for a malevolent conglomoration. I challenge you, the reader, to fight tyranny in its most apparant form. Unite!


Oh, and sorry I couldn't fit you in there Zach. I considered putting you under "socialist" or "malevolent conglomeration", but those weren't insulting enough. I have to deprecate equally, you know.

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This calls for an entirely separate post. I've often wondered how Uwe Boll puts food on the table, but now there's an answer.

Read this.

Here's what I'm gathering from what comments on the article. It's a huge financial fiasco, that Hollywood pulls on almost every movie, through Germany. Basically, investors turn a huge profit by investing in doomed ventures (Uwe Boll's movies). How does this work?

Say you're a rich dude, and your net income (profit) is 10 million dollars per year. According to German law, you are taxed on that 10 million, not the rest of your income. You may make 50 million, but if 40 million of that is losses, you are only taxed for 10 million. So, you put this extra 10 million into a movie like Alone in the Dark.

Now say you're the company producing this piece of crap. You now have 10 million dollars invested into your movie. If you're doing the movie 100% legitimately, this basically means that at the end of the process, you'll give the investors a certain percentage of their investment back, based on how much money the movie makes. But if you're Hollywood, you aren't doing this legitimately. What do you do? You set up a tax shelter in Germany, where German investors give you money, before your movie has even begun. The advantage of this is that the investors can put their money into something completely tax-deductable, meaning instead of taking 15% hits in income taxes, they will take 5%, which ends up being in the millions as far as how much is saved.

There are dozens of other spins to add to the ball here, such as filming in several locations throughout the world to utilize other tax flaws, selling distribution rights, and all that jazz. However, the end product is a huge profit for every party involved. Take Tomb Raider. Ever hear that the budget for that piece of crap was $90 million? Did you know that the actual money required to make the movie was somewhere between $7-9 million? This, my friends, is why Peter Jackson feels compelled to sue New Line Cinema, for this very process of 'cooking the books'. Brought to you by your friendly neighborhood team of lawyers.

I can't sleep.