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Moved on from 1 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

What my grandfather saw [08 Apr 2010|08:55pm]
My grandfather passed away a week ago Saturday. He will be missed, as he was always loved.

He was the grandson of the owner of a gold mine; he was a Sergeant in the US Army (retired), a mechanic, a Freemason for 50 years, a truck driver for 35 years, a one-time Republican candidate for City Council, a brother, husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and great-great-grandfather. He is the source of my both my middle name and conviction that stubbornness is genetic.

It's amazing, to me, to think of all the things he saw in his nearly 88 years. My profession wasn't even conceived of when he was born.

He was born two years after women had gotten the right to vote, in a time when we were still segregated.

He saw the Great Depression and the New Deal, and fought Hitler's army.

He saw the rise and fall of all of Joe Kennedy's sons: one by plane crash, two by bullet, and one who lived to comb grey hair. He lived next to them on Cape Cod.

He saw the bomb drop.

He saw Vietnam, Watergate, and the rise and fall of the Soviet Union.

He saw the civil rights movement, the United States desegregated, the assassination of Dr. King, and the election of the first black President.

He watched the first man walk on the moon.

He saw the passage of Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and the latest health bill.

He saw the beginning and the end of Reagan's national political career.

He saw the first microelectronics, and pocket calculators go from inception to luxury to commodity.

He saw the invention of the television, the rise of home computers, and the advent of the internet.


All that in 87 years and 11 months. Is it even possible to imagine what we'll see?

Charles Frederick Ogilvie. Rest in peace. We love you.

Walk on by...

On Massachusetts [19 Jan 2010|10:59pm]
[ mood | crushed ]

I'm sorry, Teddy.

We let you down. The people whom you served so diligently for nearly half a century--for my mother's entire life--have betrayed the cause of your life, and in doing so betrayed your memory and all that you stood for.

Today, Massachusetts killed your dream. Today Massachusetts killed health care reform. Today, Massachusetts left people to die.

How many will die has yet to be seen, but for every failed attempt at healthcare reform, the clock has been reset at around sixteen years.

Eighteen thousand people die every year in the United States because they don't have adequate healthcare.

If we wait sixteen years, that's nearly 300,000 people. Or roughly a hundred 9/11s.

All because we remain the only advanced nation stubborn enough to continue ignoring the writing on the wall: universal, high-quality, affordable and accessible healthcare saves money and saves lives. The numbers are there. We pay twice as much as other advanced nations, all of whom have universal coverage, and we live shorter lives. And yet somehow we write this off under the assumption that socialism is somehow evil and un-American, as though our firefighters and policemen and postal workers are private contractors. As though the idea that you shouldn't be left to die because you're poor is somehow against our moral core.

Today we go to sleep a poorer nation in ideology, a poorer nation in morality, and a poorer nation in hope.

Rest in peace, Teddy. But if you can find the time, could you lend us a hand down here? We need you more than ever.

Walk on by...

VOTE. [19 Jan 2010|12:32pm]
VOTE.  All of you, go and vote.  And vote for the Democrat.  I don't care if you don't vote <i>for</i> Coakley, but vote for progress, vote for Wall St. regulation, vote to get the bailout money back, vote for health reform, vote to stop climate change.  Whatever reason you need to fill in the oval next to her name, use it, go out, and vote.  

We <b>cannot</b> lose now.  We are far too close.

Moved on from 1 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

Where the Sidewalk Ends [17 Oct 2009|08:59pm]
I was stumbling about the grocery store today and saw a copy of "Where the Sidewalk Ends" by Shel Silverstein. I picked it up and thumbed through, and I remembered this gem from when I was younger; it made me smile:

Listen to the MUSTN'TS, child
Listen to the DON'TS
Listen to the SHOULDN'TS
The IMPOSSIBLES, the WON'TS
Listen to the NEVER HAVES
Then listen close to me -
Anything can happen, child
ANYTHING can be.

Moved on from 1 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

[26 Aug 2009|08:57am]
RIP Teddy. You will be missed.

"For all those whose cares have been our concern, the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives and the dream shall never die."

I wish I had more to say.

Edit: I just had to add a link to this.

Moved on from 4 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

For those of you who don't keep track of me on Stalkerbook... [04 May 2009|11:13am]
Last week, I accepted a job offer at Eli Lilly in Indianapolis. Great pay, great benefits, good security (that is, you know your job is secure when the company you work for has enough money to purchase a street in downtown Indianapolis, wall it off, and turn it into a walking path/courtyard for employees with pretty landscaping).

It's gonna be interesting.

Moved on from 4 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

On traffic laws. [26 Mar 2009|01:38pm]
So, having had my new car registered for less than 24 hours, I got a speeding ticket today.

I am annoyed.

Not simply because of "woe-is-me" rationalization, but because the whole concept of a speeding ticket is flawed.

They are, presumably, designed as instruments of safety, but are instead implemented as instruments of revenue. This is wrong on two levels: primarily, they do not serve their intended purpose, and secondarily, the purpose they claim is overridden in practice by the system of implicit (or explicit) quotas on traffic enforcement.

First, an anecdote: I work with a man who used to be a police officer, and is now a forensic engineer and expert witness. He got pulled over, and the police officer started lecturing him on his speed, and my coworker replied that he was just keeping up with traffic, and had indeed been going the same speed as the officer, to which the officer said "I've never seen anybody get into an accident for going too slow."

My coworker said "Well, I work in forensics. I have, and let me tell you..."

The point is that enforcement is arbitrary and all too subjective, while the purported safety benefits are far from proven.

Unsafe driving does not stem from speed. It comes from distraction. If I'm on my cell phone, or texting, or the lady next to me is, that's unsafe driving. Distracted speeding is dangerous, but no more so than doing the same at the speed limit. Accidents are not caused by speed; they are caused by a failure to anticipate the actions of those around you. If I notice a man swerving around, I'm either going to slow to a good distance behind him or, ideally, blow by him as quickly as possible so that he can't crash and cause me to do so as well. And then I'm going to call to report him.

Slowing down traffic has no effect on the swerving man because he's distracted either way. In general, the concept of a "deadly collision" has this connotation of speed attached, but I recall the video I watched in Driver's Ed (hah!) wherein the producers took two cars and rolled them at 30mph toward one another--mind you, this is virtually a crawl to most people--and staggered them so that the left halves of the cars would collide. They were literally sheared in half; it's a 60mph collision. The parts of the respective cars that didn't come in contact with the other kept on rolling. So, if you want to avoid deadly collisions, we can't go 30mph on a two-way road. Any speed on top of 30mph is deadly from a physical standpoint.

So then the argument turns to this: "It's not that speed itself is dangerous, but that people's reaction time is slowed at higher speed." Which is exactly true, but minimally significant; it's not slowed nearly as much by speed as it is if I perform one of the myriad other driving stupidities that are common to us here in the good ol' US. Cell phones, I'm looking at you. Eating, drinking while driving, putting on makeup, shaving, you name it. Driving is not a passive activity between point A and point B consisting of time to kill in between. It is an activity in itself and should be paid attention to as such. This is why German cars have shitty cupholders. It's a problem of culture.

The problem is that people do not pay attention to their surroundings while driving. This is a pandemic in American driving, because we have no driver education system to speak of. For all intents and purposes, we get in the car with an examiner, and drive around the block, and barring that we hit something, we're good to go. Many of you know my cute little story, but it's a farce. I was in no way examined.

Proponents of speed limits cite studies saying that the number of highway deaths are increasing as the speed limit increases, or, I believe I've heard, simply that they've increased over time. This is a perfect example of a mixup between correlation and causation: speed limits tend to increase over time, and so do highway deaths. However, the number of miles driven goes up a large factor more in the same time period. The appropriate metric is not absolute numerical deaths, but deaths per mile driven. But analyzing this statistic doesn't yield the optimal economic result for towns that make their revenue fining well-behaved citizens instead of catching criminals. In fact, as cars have gotten safer over the years (think since 1970) deaths per mile driven have gone down significantly.

The solution to the revenue issue is graded licenses (if I recall correctly, Germany charges something on the order of $3000 to get a license to drive on the autobahn) and better education. Eliminate the cupholders and cell phones and teach people to drive, dammit. And how about a zero-tolerance policy for intoxicated driving? One and done. Lose your license forever. That way, you can go as fast as you're comfortable with, provided you're properly educated and your car can do it. This will make for many more motorists paying attention to the road and a safer driving environment for everyone.

Let me not get into the issues of distraction created by paranoia in drivers when cops start using cars like unmarked Mustangs to pull people over.

Moved on from 1 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

In DC [11 Mar 2009|07:01pm]
I'm in DC 'til Friday, interviewing with the NSA.

Wolf rescinded their informal offer of employment.

My Taurus just kicked the bucket.

And I just bought a Mercedes. :)

Erin is being discharged from the Army.

Which means I can take her with me wherever I go.

This is a bumpy start to my last quarter, but all in all, not too bad.

Walk on by...

A Valentine's Day recommendation [13 Feb 2009|03:19pm]
Yeah, yeah. You can complain about the commercialism of it all, but really, if it takes a commercialized holiday to inspire stuff like this, then I'm all for it.

Go read it. It's wonderful.

Moved on from 1 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

[20 Jan 2009|08:50am]
As of noon today, I'll be able to say "President Barack Obama."

I like the sound of that.

Walk on by...

Today is a Good Day(TM) [19 Jan 2009|08:51am]
It is officially George W. Bush's last day.

I've only waited eight years.

:)

Happy birthday, Erin!

Moved on from 3 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

Disjointed thoughts [25 Dec 2008|10:43am]
Happy holidays.

I feel as though mine don't start for a few more days, when I get to pick up the girl at the airport and have her here with me for a few days. It should be a nice way to start the new year.

My mother's moving today, tomorrow, this weekend. Sold the place in Westminster, moving to an apartment in Acton until she gets a job in AZ, whereupon they'll haul all the junk out there to a new place. Rent is $1300 a month for their new tiny 1-bedroom apartment, not including utilities. I pay a (very) little more than a third of that for my place, which is only marginally smaller. Damn, living around here is expensive.

Dad just got his power back Tuesday morning, after it'd gone out Friday, for a total of ten days without power.

I have the same damn cough that I've had for going on a month. No chest congestion, no head congestion. Just a tickle in the back of my throat. For a whole. Effing. Month. It's driving me mad.

*cough*

I probably ought to shower. Have a good day, Eljay. Be nice to people today.

Walk on by...

On weather [21 Dec 2008|04:16pm]
I'm home.

It's snowy.

We've had two feet of snow in the past two days. I managed to pick the perfect window for my flight to land in, between two waves of snowstorms.

My father still doesn't have power after the ice storm last Friday. My mother's power was out for five days, but it's on now...

Erin's coming here on the 29th, which I am ecstatic about, and is on the same return flight with me. After we go back, she's got a week off (during which I have school) and then starts school in Terre Haute. I like this.

I'm busy with my three jobs, as a TA for OS, and an intern for Rose Ventures/Infraware, and an intern for Wolf.

School's busy at the moment, despite only having three classes/12 credits. I dislike this fact.

NSA is doing their background check on me at the moment, so if any of you are bothered by them, kindly tell them honestly that I am not a closet Muslim or something of the like.

Erin went into work with a collar mark on her neck, the other day. She told me a customer knew what it was. I laughed.

We have so much fun. :)

Moved on from 1 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

A lot has happened [07 Dec 2008|06:23pm]
In the past week, a whole lot has happened. I came back from Boston, met a girl, spent four days and nights straight with her, she left for a night and came back for two more nights. I brought her home yesterday and she might be coming back tonight to stay for an extended period while she gets some things sorted out at home.

This is the fastest I've fallen in love. I like it.

And she's so perfect for me.

<3 Erin.

Moved on from 3 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

I've been home for a while now... [26 Nov 2008|12:45pm]
...but for whatever reason, I have neglected posting here.

I am home.

I came in on Wednesday having not slept Tuesday night for working on my senior project. The robot, it seemed, liked sleep more than I did, and by 2AM it was too tired to work well and decided to twitch. I left at 4:30. On Thursday, I went out to dinner with mi madre and Tom and promptly stayed up too late again before heading to Boston on Friday morning.

It was during this too-late-ness that my phone, when trying to look up d0wnbytheriver's phone number, ceased to work. It froze, so I took out and replaced the battery. No luck. Blinking white screen. Took out the battery, plugged it in the wall. No luck. Phone was quite certainly dead.

So, phoneless, I toured BU's law school. I like it. It's looking like the favorite of the lot, at the moment, because I love the city and it is highly-reputed among law schools on the whole and among IP law programs (as the lack of overlap of the respective ranked lists is surprisingly nontrivial).

The realization that phonelessness would not do for even a twenty-four hour period struck me as I realized that I was to be hanging out with several friends in Boston over the next seventy-two. So, the hunt for Fire & Ice commenced, followed by the hunt for Red October a Verizon store. Wherein I found the Voyager. Which, while not nearly as cool as the space ship, is still pretty damn cool. Tactile feedback touch screens ftw.

Madre and I saw Body of Lies, and then met up with Vro, who took us back to the T station where, at 7:45ish, I met up with oration. We had every intention of going to see insafemode at the show he was doing in Waltham at 8. Except that we tried and failed. We met up with his friends and hung out for a bit while waiting for his boy to figure out when/where/how to meet and/or get us to Waltham from Roxbury Crossing. His friend the elf had to put more money on the CharlieTicket he was using, so we missed the orange line which would have connected us on time to the Waltham commuter rail station. But, all was good when we made it to Alewife and Vin picked us up and drove us to the last five minutes of the show.

Then the lot of us went to Tom Can Cook, which surprisingly enough turned out to be true. We spent an hour-plus being Too Loud in an Asian Restaurant, telling stories of hungry couches and making bad "that's what she said!" jokes and trying to kill people by making them choke on their beverages via hilarity.

So we took insafemode home and had a nice orgy, by which I mean series of interesting conversations chock-full-o'-funny, from anal hooks to driver's ed mishaps to exactly how much Vin had smoked.

The night turned into early morning, which it had been threatening to do since we got back to oration's apartment, and Vro called me up, met me at the T station, and we went back to his place where I slept.

Next day, Vro and I went to the Penguin for pizza, went to Copley to find him some gifts for his girlfriend, and then met up with d0wnbytheriver, who was fun, but sick. We went to Quincy Market to (unintentionally) avoid the tree lighting ceremony, then went to see Quantum of Solace. Meghan departed, and Vro and I met dovyman at the door to Vro's apartment, where he'd been waiting for a few minutes.

We went out, back to the Penguin, and I had a notverygoodwithsalsa double-chocolate beer. We headed over to the nearest Irish pub, where we found karaoke and Mary Little, along with another high school friend(!?). A drink later, we left, mostly due to the karaoke, and headed to the Mission. A few more drinks later, we left and found Mary again, who headed back with us to Vro's apartment. One dirty girlscout and lots of gossip about who from Oakmont became drug addicts later, the guys left to go to bed and Mary argued with me about relativism until 4+ AM.

Next day, gave Dovy a ride home, and talked to a lady (Erin, for the record) who sent me a message while I was gone. The next day, I went to the dentist to find out I have a cavity (boo) and went to Bunce to have lunch with Chris (yay). Made too many ringtones for my phone, talked to Erin until 6AM. I think she likes me. :P

Tuesday, did a whole lot of absolutely nothing. And then talked to the girl 'til 4AM. I think I like her. :P

Tonight, I'm going to Chopsticks with madre and Tom for sushi. And then maybe drinks with Chris; either tonight or Friday. Might do something with Liza on Friday, if she can find time, but not likely. Tomorrow's activities will consist of eating, and eating, and then eating. Mmmm, food.

Saturday, I leave. And meet Erin. :)

Side note: I pity my senior project team. I feel like I deserted them by coming home. :/

I have not had a single normal night's sleep since I've been home. O_o

Walk on by...

What marriage is [14 Nov 2008|08:09pm]
What marriage is; thank you tablesaw.

Moved on from 4 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

Damn. [13 Nov 2008|07:13pm]
I have no interview with Microsoft. I thought the on-campus one went ridiculously well, but I guess not.

Sucks.

It appears as though I'll be poor for three more years. Suggestions for law school with an LSAT of 163? I'd really like east or west coast, or Chicago for that matter.

ETA: The list as it stands now (USNWR rank, school, LSAT 75-50-25, location):

  • 9 Northwestern (172-170-166) Chicago

  • 16 Univ Texas Austin (168-166-162) Austin

  • 21 BU (166-165-163) Boston

  • 22 Emory (166-164-162) Atlanta

  • 27 Fordham (166-163-161) Manhattan

  • 30 Univ Washington (166-162-159) Seattle

Moved on from 1 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

I am proud. [05 Nov 2008|01:51am]
America, I am proud of you tonight.

I am proud of us tonight.

To those of you in my generation, whether you've been on board with this campaign since the DNC in 2004 or whether you just made up your mind today, thank you. Thank you all, every last one of you.

This is our moment in history. We will look back at this day for a hundred years with pride and a sense of accomplishment unfelt in most of our lives.

Tonight, we have changed the world. We have shattered the record for voter turnout set when Kennedy battled Nixon. Actual numbers to come when all is said and done.

Tonight, John and Robert Kennedy, Dr. King, Medgar Evers, and millions of ordinary people whose names have long since been forgotten by history are looking down and smiling.

Thank you, America, for making me proud.

Moved on from 5 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

So close. [03 Nov 2008|05:51pm]
One more day.

Vote for change.

Moved on from 6 places
'cause she didn't fit in there
| Walk on by...

[18 Oct 2008|01:11pm]
I voted yesterday. :)

This way I can spend all election day running around town and making sure we get everyone out to vote.

If you can vote early in your state, you should vote early too. Avoid the lines, and avoid "Oh crap, something came up!" or "I forgot..." and make sure your voice is heard.

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