"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion."

-- The Dalai Lama

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

It's Funny Because It's True

During a recent study break this made me laugh out loud.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

No More Games, I'ma Change What You Call Rage

Today at school I overheard two students prepping for the LSAT discovering that they both listen to Eminem's "Lose Yourself" before each practice test.

I wonder what Eminem's reaction would be if he was told that overachievers preparing for the Law School Admission Test chose his song to get all pumped up to fill in one of five bubbles depending on the answer arrived at through the application of logical and analytical reasoning.

Never Let Them See You Sweat

Student presentations suck. Watching them sucks. Giving them especially sucks.

Part of today - the part where I'm boring my classmates to tears - is going to suck.

I'm not ashamed to admit that I'm going to need a little retail therapy later.

The good news is that after this fiasco the semester is more than less over.


UPDATE: My Presentation Is Over. A Haiku:

Great relief. Free from
the shackles of Powerpoint.
Ended with applause.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Turn Down the World...

I really, really want some noise canceling headphones. Browsing on Amazon, these seem to be the favorite, but I'm wondering if anyone has any other recommendations.

In other news, the word of the day is stress. Finishing school and the wedding plans have whipped themselves into a relentless screeching frenzy and there's no real end in sight. But I refuse to whine about it any more than I absolutely have to.

The more positive news is that I have finally finished my huge Powerpoint presentation for my talk on Tuesday, and my term paper for the same class is nearing the home stretch.

For the wedding, the last vendor - the officiant - has been booked. (A very nice judge. We found her on the city's website. We were both relieved to have found someone with no religious ties.) The hair and makeup have been practiced, the food has been tasted, the cake has been chosen (We went with one larger cake with a bunch of smaller versions around it - so cute!). Next week is final dress fitting (Of course between now and Thursday I need to lose about 4 pounds...), tux renting and marriage license getting. (Is it too late to elope?)

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Stress Relief Tip #1

Take pictures of baby geese.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

Why Law the Porn Star

You know how sometimes it's fun to google yourself and others you know? Well, after I'm married, when someone is bored and googles my new name, they will find miles of porn.

Yes, my new name also belongs to a porn star. That's just absolutely fantastic. I'm going to be in law school and that guy I'll sit next to in Con Law or whatever is going to think to himself, "Hmm, I'm bored. I'm going to google people in my row." He's going to know my name because, you know, we sit next to each other, and he's going to come across these thousands of links that have not-very-nice names. He's not going to be able to click on them because he doesn't want to get busted for looking at porn in class so instead he's going to IM his buddy who sits in the back of the class with, "Dude, check it out. That chick sitting next to me does porn! I'm serious!" Then he's going to show the IM to his new girlfriend that sits next to him, and she is going to laugh and point and send a mass IM to all of her friends because she is one of those popular girls who has lots of friends to tell gossip to, and it is going to spread like wildfire that I do porn.

Absolutely fantastic.


While walking home yesterday I was suddenly surrounded by 15,000 butterflies. I thought that maybe I was living in a Disney movie now, but it turns out that it was normal migratory behavior, but in record numbers.

Friday, April 15, 2005

My Turn!

The lovely and talented CM said I should, so here you go:

1. You're stuck inside Fahrenheit 451, which book do you want to be saved?

I had to skip this one and come back to it last. I guess I'm supposed to pick a book that positively influences people, not just something that I like. In which case, I will find a very thorough, accurate worldwide history book and save that.

2. Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?

Tons of times. I think this is supposed to be all about books, so I will answer with the first book-crush I can remember: David from Run Softly, Go Fast by Barbara Wersba. I read this book in an English class during my last semester of high school. I actually stole a copy the day I dropped out. I can safely say this book changed my life. Anyway, to the crush part - Who wouldn't love a character that wakes up early and finds bottles to recycle so he can buy his new girlfriend a perfect orange? So sweet...

3. The last book you purchased?

Teach Yourself Japanese
by Helen Ballhatchet and Stefan Kaiser.

4. What are you currently reading?

Antarctica by Kim Stanley Robinson and Starting Off Right in Law School by Carolyn J. Nygren.

5. Five books you would take to a deserted island?

Being forced to read (or watch) the same thing over and over again is a fear of mine. So I guess I would find the five most comprehensive "Learn This Language" books and bring those. At least this way I would be doing something during the stranded time other than just reading and re-reading.

So now I need to pick three people that a) haven't done this already, b) are likely to read this and c) are supercool. I pick Janine, Shelley and SG.

Human Sovereignty! Part 2

This symposium was chock full of good, clean, nerdy fun. The lectures, especially those by Chris Chyba and Fred Adams, were amazing. I strongly encourage anyone attending the University of Michigan to go and see a talk by Dr. Adams if you have a chance. Or anyone, really, it's just that he teaches there and therefore those in attendance would probably have the most opportunity to do so.

Anyway, yes, the lectures were good, but it's the Q&A that I really want to talk about. You see, J and I ran into an old friend: Mr. Human Sovereignty Guy ! He asked his question right after the old man who just had to tell the panel about his experience of feeling at one with the universe in "every atom of his body" and he is sure we exist so the "universe can feel itself." I'm not kidding you.

Anyway, back to Human Sovereignty Guy. He directed his question to the Carl Sagan Chair for the Study of Life in the Universe at the SETI Institute, Dr. Chris Chyba: Do you believe, he asked, that aliens are visiting us and living among us? And if so, what do you think their intentions are? I'm pretty sure he's still concerned that we just aren't safe, and that it is his duty to seek out all presentations at the University of Colorado at Boulder campus to voice his concerns in order to save us all from the certain desovereignizing of humankind.

I was so stunned (and embarrassed) that I don't even remember what the response was, but I do remember that the moderator of the panel shut down his follow-up (How do you think we should treat the aliens when they get here?) with a curt, "Please check out any of the popular movies such as 'Independence Day' or 'Men In Black' for an answer to your question."

We also made a new friend, Mr. Planet X. His question was about this "new planet" he had "read about" and he was sure it was the "planet that all the pre-Judeo Christian religions believe the gods live on." The panel assured him that they had no information regarding such a planet. Mr. Planet X didn't seem convinced.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Three Down, One To Go

My third of four finals from last semester - Physics - is in the bag.

This has been a challenging four months.

It's doubtful that I'll be able to get prepared for my Purgatory exam by finals time for the current semester, but my Dante professor assured me that taking it over the summer will be just fine. So long as I have a diploma to show the law school in August, I'm happy.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Classy... (Updated)

While I am sticking to my vow of not reading any of the law school boards I did check out the XOXO thread linked to from JD2B about Justice Scalia's NYU visit. After glancing over the conversation I wrote it off to just more talk until I read this article, specifically this portion:

In asking about Scalia's dissent in Lawrence v. Texas and his view
that privacy is not constitutionally protected, Eric Berndt, a law student, shocked the crowd by asking, "Do you sodomize your wife?"

Scalia refused to answer the question while the crowd gasped and the administrators promptly turned off Berndt's microphone.

Very classy. I have to agree that perhaps Mr. Berndt could have found a more productive (and mature) manner in which to phrase his question. One that Justice Scalia would have actually answered with a response that could have contributed to the discussion regarding privacy. Instead the result was simply an emotional response from the crowd and a line in the school paper.

Now, obviously I wasn't there and perhaps this article took the incident and twisted it to make Mr. Berndt's question appear obnoxious by taking that one line out of a longer quote, and the question "Do you sodomize your wife?" was actually appropriate in context.

This incident makes me think about the question of how to respect an office or other position (such as President of the United States, or Supreme Court Justice) when you strongly disagree with, and perhaps even personally dislike, the person holding the position. I think that the respect of the position doesn't mean that the individual shouldn't be criticized, but it can (and maybe should) change the way the criticism is expressed.

Update: Wonkette has an email response from Eric Berndt (linked to by JD2B) Some excerpts:

"It should be clear that I intended to be offensive, obnoxious, and inflammatory. There is a time to discuss and there are times when acts and opposition are necessary. Debate is useless when one participant denies the full dignity of the other."

"...I did have a legal point: Justice Kennedy's majority opinion in Lawrence asked whether criminalizing homosexual conduct advanced a state interest "which could justify the intrusion into the personal and private life of the individual." Scalia did not answer this question in his dissent because he believed the state need only assert a legitimate interest to defeat non-fundamental liberties. I basically asked him this question again - it is now the law of the land. He said he did not know whether the interest was significant enough. I then asked him if he sodomizes his wife to subject his intimate relations to the scrutiny he cavalierly would allow others - by force, if necessary"

"We protestors did not embarrass NYU, Scalia embarrassed NYU. We stood up to a bigot for the values that make NYU more than a great place to learn the law. I repeat my willingess to discuss this issue calmly with anyone who respects my identity as a gay man."

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Sticks and Stones...

I consider myself to be a nice person. I smile, and say please, and thank you. I try to help out where I can. I try not to get in anyone's way, and try to always say excuse me when I do.

That said, I was waiting at the bus stop after class today, just reading the Daily and minding my own business. Suddenly, a screech of tires, and honking...and a sharp pain as a rock hits me on the side of my head. This immediately followed by a shout of, "Bitch!" and a vanful of jackass male laughter.

I didn't know them, they didn't know me. The worst part was - no one in the large crowd at the stop bothered to ask me if I was okay, and a few guys even laughed.

I'm having a hard time believing in humanity today.


The law school discussion boards are such an incredible waste of time. Enough is enough - I'm done with 'em.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Great News!

J was officially accepted into his Master's program at Portland State University!

Oh Boy!

Another early wedding present: A digital camera! Finally!

We have wanted a decent digital camera for, well, since digital cameras became decent. We have an old one from years ago that's just about the size of our dog. Our dog is small, but still way too big for a camera.

Sunday, April 10, 2005


Yes, I'm going to blog about the weather. I'm sorry.

Yesterday J and I walked the dog in light clothing. The day before I wore shorts to school.

Just now the news called the current conditions: "The Blizzard of 2005"

I'm sitting in my living room, procrastinating. I should be working on a paper - I'll get to it. Eventually.

Poor J is at the airport, trying to get to a conference for work in Ohio. His original flight was supposed to take off at 10:30am, but that flight was cancelled late last night so he was rebooked on one that should've taken off at 6am. Poor guy, he got up at 3am, made it to the airport, sat on the runway for several hours and then was unboarded.

His parents are in Utah and were supposed to drive back tomorrow morning. Driving back means taking mountain passes with a big old truck and trailer. I highly doubt that's happening.

My sister is also supposed to fly home from San Francisco tomorrow morning. They are saying 6"-15" additional snow at Denver International by tomorrow at 10am, so that's not looking promising.

I've lost power in the apartment about 6 times since I started this post. My TiVo isn't happy.

Friday, April 08, 2005

Comment Notification?

This is lame, but I have to ask here because Blogger's support form is broken (!) -

Is anyone else having problems with not being notified of new comments via email?

Update: Never mind, it seems to be working again.

Thursday, April 07, 2005


One of the most jaw-clenching aggravations about going to a school with 30,000 other students is the way one is reduced to being just a number in the system. Especially when it comes to departments such as Financial Aid.

All during my undergraduate experience, I think there have been only 2 semesters when financial aid has gone smoothly and I didn't have to go in and straighten something out. Sometimes the people are nice (especially when dealing with those people higher up in the pecking order) and other times people have been so incredibly rude I've been dumbstruck.

I bring this up now because I just received tangible confirmation of my choice to not attend CU Law, from none other than the Financial Aid Office. You see, I have lived in Colorado my entire life. Even while studying in Arizona for that one semester I still paid rent here and therefore retained permanent residency.

I just received my financial aid award from CU Law. Yes, you guessed it - I was packaged as a Non-Resident. Am I happy that I don't have to deal with straightening out yet another CU Financial Aid mistake? Especially one that had me paying an additional $16,000 in tuition for 1L? Hell yeah!

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Soup Is Good Food...

From the NY Times "Food Companies Test Flavorings That Can Mimic Sugar, Salt or MSG":
But Senomyx maintains that its new products are safe because they will be used in tiny quantities.

Yes, because a small amount of something has never hurt anybody...Right? But, seriously, don't worry:
Since Senomyx's flavor compounds will be used in small proportions (less than one part per million), the company is able to bypass the lengthy F.D.A. approval process required to get food additives on the market.

Always remember: What is good for Kraft's bottom line is good for you!

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Moving Advice Request

Update: Edited for the more literal among us...

As you know, we're moving across the country 1247 miles (or 968 as the crow flies) from Colorado to Oregon. I want to shoot for mid/late July while J is leaning more toward early August.

I've never moved out of state before, and am unsure about some things. For example, we will not be able to take a trip out beforehand to look at houses. Do we just lease a place over the phone? That kind of freaks me out, not being able to see the house, the neighborhood, etc. firsthand. We're planning on just renting a U-Haul truck and pulling the car behind. Has anyone done this, and if so do you have any advice, warnings, etc. for us?

I'm really very excited about the move, and surprisingly not at all anxiety-filled. I also don't know what I'm doing. Seriously. No clue. So any and all advice is welcome.


Monday, April 04, 2005

Playtime's Over

As CM mentioned in comments, I'm busy.

March was a time of self-indulgent thoughts and flitting back and forth between the coasts. There was still two months before graduation, and three before the wedding. No problem.

April, on the other hand, is a time of putting the head down and getting it done. There's one month until graduation, and two before the wedding. These are scarier numbers.

Aside from normal classwork, I still have that term paper to write, plus still two finals from last semester. One of these (Physics) will be taken on Thursday, and then I start preparing for the big Dante mess. Then, of course, the finals for this semester, the last of which will actually be taken the morning of my graduation. Thanks, CU!

In wedding news, I've gotten my shoes (which I love!), we've gotten the rings, and we've booked the caterer, the cakemaker, a hair and makeup person, the photographer, the DJ for the reception, a classical guitarist for the ceremony and I'm working on finding a (completely secular) officiant. Things regarding the wedding were so stressful there for awhile, but it's all working itself out now. I think.

I'll miss you, March. April - Do your worst.

Friday, April 01, 2005

Portland, Baby!

Dear Lewis & Clark,

You had me at hello.



P.S. The check's in the mail!

It's Over...Again...Almost

I just got home from my third and final law school admitted students' day, this time at CU.

I'm taking a couple of hours to really think things over, and then a deposit check is going in the mail. I have lots of strong feelings, and a few - but very few - ambiguous ones.

It's a big decision, though, so I'm going to respect it and really think about the pros and cons for a little while.

The next time I post - It will be done. Oh, the drama!