Isqua Istari

The Wise Wizards

Blocking

Posted in Other by Ziggy Monday August 23, 2004 at 11:56

Ok…this probably isn’t very interesting but I had to tell someone.

In the Navy’s own words:
“Effective immediately…a block has been placed to prevent users from downloading executable (.exe) files from any Internet sources other than .mil sites. This block has been implemented to enhance the security of the NMCI network.”

Yeah…good old Big Brother looking out for us again. You couldn’t, maybe, fire the people who are running maliciousexecutable files? You couldn’t enforce personal responsibility? Clearly I’m in the wrong place.

Arrivals

Posted in Other by Toad Wednesday August 18, 2004 at 16:02

Today, all of our stuff got here. Lots of stuff. 31 boxes of stuff. It’s also no less than 4 entire days late, a fact that–along with some loud complaints– earned us a $100 rebate on our shipping deal. It’s fun to be opening all the boxes and putting stuff away, especially in the kitchen, which previously was severely lacking in several aspects (e.g. silverware, bakeware, flatware).

Interestingly, today is also the end of a very exciting period of time. With so little stuff, we were forced to improvise a lot, which was actually a lot of fun. Finding ways to eat cereal with no bowls, mix pudding with no mixing bowls, and the like was a very eye-opening experience, which taught us quite a bit about how little you really need to live on, and shattered some myths about household necessities. As a new couple wanting to do our finances right, it was very interesting to see what we do and don’t need to buy, and things of that nature.

That said, it is still nice to have our stuff back (and some stuff we haven’t had before), and we’re looking forward to having all the boxes away from our back window. 😉

Pardon my French…

Posted in Other by Toad Wednesday August 11, 2004 at 08:51

So I was thinking in the shower this morning, and I thought about why people swear. Perhaps this isn’t always why people swear, but it seems to me that people swear largely because they let themselves feel an emotion that they either shouldn’t or needn’t be feeling. As most of you probably know, I have on occasion been known to pepper my speech with vulgarity. However, when I’m with my dad’s family, my wife’s family, or my wife, I never swear. Still more, I’m never even tempted to swear. I don’t find myself catching myself, “oops, I nearly cussed at my mother-in-law…” I just don’t ever even feel the need to swear.

On the other hand, when I do swear, I’ve usually been in the dorms at school, or sometimes at work. There are two factors to this, I think. 1) I’m surrounded by people cursing up a storm, and 2) I’m generally much angrier. My attitude over the past few years while I was at school was generally much less content and much more angry. I missed my girlfriend/fiancee, I had uncooperative professors who didn’t always like me, I wasn’t making as much money as I’d like, etc. In that mindset, vulgarity crept into my vocabulary without my ever noticing it, and when I did notice it, I just kind of ignored it.

Think about a group that is stereotyped for their coarse language, sailors or soldiers for example. They have reason upon reason to be angry and discontent with their situation. The more instances of swearing I think about, the more I am certain that swearing occurs when angry. “My damn computer broke” conveys a lot more anger than “My computer broke,” even though the situation is not necessarily meritting anger.

People say they get in the habit of cursing. I have to wonder… do they get in the habit of cursing, or do they get in the habit of being angry and discontent?

Music Camp

Posted in Other by Ziggy Monday August 9, 2004 at 17:02

Well, I’m back from music camp.

First of all, the drive to and from was surprisingly pleasant. Kevin is great to talk to, as long as you don’t want to go into some technical subject.

Camp itself was great. We learned a lot of songs, tunes, and chord theory for the piano. Beside that it was really fun to listen to all the great musicians, the weather was cool with a little bit of rain, the food was delicious (with the sole exception of the french “toast” which looked more like mucus on the inside), and there were a lot of good people there. Of special note (at least to me) were Rachell Darling and Titus Copper. Rachell helped me get started playing the mandolin by teaching me a few chords. It’s amazing what can be done with the chords G, C, and D, especially when acompanying fiddle music. Nearing the end of the week, I made the acquaintence of Titus, who is a phenominal mandolin player for being only 14 years old. I’m going to have to practice a lot to be as good as he is.

Titus played in a band called “Greenerblue” which plays mostly bluegrass music. The bulk of the band is formed by three sisters, Dena (violin), Paula (guitar), and Jaime (cello, and wow is she good!) along with a friend who plays the banjo (but wasn’t at camp). Although their music was good (Jerusalem’s Ridge rocks!) I had the most fun playing “Pirates of the Carribean” with them (all but Dena) in a band Kevin pulled together called “Pokey Bushes”. It consisted of Paula, Jaime, Titus, Lary (an old guy who is a pretty hot guitar player), my Dad (on the Base violin), Kevin (on the violin) and myself (piano). Wow, we worked out the chord progression in a few hours with the help of some of the teachers and when it was done it sounded terriffic (litterally!). I’m trying to learn how to play the chords on the cello, but the’re pretty difficult…

Well, that’s what I did last week. I miss it already… the music, food, friends, forest, mountain air, stars, rain, smell of the pines…

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