That's not what the Death card means

post 1
written 2005-09-04 01:34:00

Yes, I have a journal.

Yes, it's very exciting.

Yes, I had to have Mikey hold my hand all the way through the process. Thanks again, Mikey.

And I have short hair.

That's about it for now.

9.4.05, 1:34 AM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 2
written 2005-09-04 11:52:00

Does anyone else think I look fat in the picture below?

Susan does.

And here I was feeling better about my self-image.

9.4.05, 11:52 AM, EDT Ada, Ohio

post 3
written 2005-09-05 12:05:00

So, this evening I'm out about five miles north of Ada with some friends. Be advised that Ada is about 75 miles from Dayton and Toledo, the closest major cities.

Now, I've enjoyed the stars a great deal since moving here. They're great, but they've only been about as great as they were at home in PA. That is, only as great as the proximity of Philadelphia allowed them to be.

So tonight, I come out of these people's house, out there in the big empty between Ada and Bluffton, and every damn star in the world's up there. Only once before have I seen that many stars, all at once, all rockin' out like that. (Rural Maryland, far enough from Annapolis and Baltimore and DC for it to really get going.)

I highly recommend to my urban dwelling friends to drive 75 miles towards the nearest empty, wait for sunset, and look up.

9.5.05, 12:05 AM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 4
written 2005-09-05 23:16:00

"Software development, like professional sports, has a way of making thirty-year old men feel decrepit."

--Neal Stephenson, Snow Crash

9.5.05, 11:16 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 5
written 2005-09-06 03:08:00

So, insomnia has taught me that it's really not that dangerous, having TV.

Last year, I specifically elected not to get cable, not to hook up rabbit ears, etc. I figured all it could do was distract me from school.

Now that I have the cable modem broadband hookup, there's a 20 channel bare minimum piped through to my apartment. It's awful. Some religious programming, the Bowling Green University educational public station, a snowy Oxygen with no sound, and some local sports network that features more Nascar than I like to think about.

If anything, I'd rather be reading about rules of evidence than watching most of that crap. Though, the news should be good once in a while. And there's TBS, which has Family Guy and (apparently) Mission Hill, sometime.

I'm going to try to sleep now.

9.6.05, 3:08 AM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 6
written 2005-09-07 01:20:00

If you ever read or watched The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle, or if you're interested in a writer's rights with regards to his own work, you might want to follow this link.

Livejournal report on Beagle's financial hardship and inability to recover royalty payments from his work.

9.7.05, 1:20 AM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 7
written 2005-09-09 12:13:00

Character evidence exceptions, separation of powers among branches of the federal government, and the adjusted basis of gifts both above and below the fair market value.

Thank goodness for geeking out, Netflix, and dinner with pretty girls.

9.09.05, 12:13 AM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 8
written 2005-09-09 12:15:00

The remainder of this page is available in archives. Heh. I've got archives.

post 9
written 2005-09-10 13:53:00

So, I think I've complained to just about everyone about this, but just in case:

I got back from my summer in PA to find that something - heat, a power surge, voodoo - had murdered my computer, or at least my computer's OS. This was something of a blow to me, as this computer was relatively new. I bought another desktop against the recommendations of my laptop-using friends. It's nice. I have broadband now, and the flat-panel monitor I got for the old box, and all in all I feel like a representative of the 21st century computer user.

However, I'm slowly realizing how much stuff was on that old box. Mikey says he can fix it, but I won't be PA-bound for at least a few months. For instance, I kept a Word file of all the phone numbers and addresses I might need on there. All my auto-remember passwords for various websites were on there. All the music that Jill totally legally downloaded was on there. All the stuff I wrote when I was entertaining thoughts of having skill at writing was on there. (No, it wasn't any good, but it had sentimental value to me.)

So, periodically, I come over, fire up my computer, and search for something that just isn't there. And that's disturbing.

So, if you're reading this, you might send me an e-mail, at the usual address, with your phone number and address if you like, and by sending it by e-mail, I'll have the e-mail address. (Carrie, this includes you.) That would be good.

Also, if there's anyone who should be made aware of this page, please let them know, or let me know to let them know. Because I'm apparently dumb and forget these things.

I'm off to do homework. On a Saturday. In the middle of the day.

9.10.05, 1:53 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 10
written 2005-09-11 20:15:00

I was all set to post something about how awful it was to have a headache all day.

At least, I was, until the vomiting started.

I'm sure I'll feel better in time for Fed Tax tomorrow morning, though. Because illness happens on illness's terms - not yours.

9.11.05, 8:15 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 11
written 2005-09-12 20:11:00

Pizza? Hot dogs? Pasta? Meatballs? Sausage?

Camus was right.

9.12.05, 8:11 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 12
written 2005-09-14 20:25:00

2010 is a good year to die. Did you all know that? I thought it was weird, possibly a misphrasing in my Federal Income Taxation book, but no. It's true.

In 2010, the estate tax (the "death tax" to Republicans, who love a good over-the-top euphemism) will be abolished. The years leading up to 2010 will show a gradual erosion of the estate tax, improving the inheritors' adjusted bases more and more each year until 2010, when there will be no estate tax at all.

And then in 2011? They put it all back the way it was before all the erosion and repealing.

That seems odd. What would impel legislators to decide, "You know, we should totally pick a year, and make that a good year to die. That'll mess with people's heads, won't it? Dude!"

I don't get it, but that's the law on the books right now. I read an article by a CPA or tax attorney asserting that set of laws would be altered or repealed before they could take effect.

So, what I learned in class today: die in 2010 if you can help it, die before 2010 otherwise, and be married when you do so. (You can increase your net worth by $1.3 million for tax deduction purposes, and your spouse can claim $3 million in forced-share inheritance assets.) Oh, and every class is grim if you look at it right.

9.14.05, 8:25 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 13
written 2005-09-18 23:35:00

News: this weekend I actually placed myself in a social situation with other people - of my own free will. Stranger-type people.

No, really.

It was kinda nice. I went to a barbecue. I tended the grill. I opened a 2-liter of soda that had been shaken up at some point. I met a bunch of people I didn't know before. I reassured many about the relative harmlessness of bees.

Good weekend, all in all. Played games, taught someone chess, drank coffee and studied the IRS codes and regulations that make it possible to write off business lunches. (They must be for a noncompensatory business-oriented reason, of course!)

Oh, and welcome to Sarah, who is Marilla's friend. Marilla herself isn't reading this, apparently, but her friend may be. Welcome!

9.18.05, 11:35 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 14
written 2005-09-19 23:58:00

I'm hoping everyone had a good International Talk Like A Pirate Day.


9.19.05, 11:58 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 15
written 2005-09-21 19:46:00

Which is worse - getting no mail, or only getting bills and credit card offers?

9.21.05, 7:46 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 16
written 2005-09-24 23:23:00

NOTICE: Non-gamers may want to skip today's post. It's almost unintelligible to the uninitiated.

Good times in Columbus today. Drove down to play cards with Jay Kristoff and crew, who had a very nice turnout of 15 people - three tables of five. I didn't get to play Jay, or DJ Feng Shui, which was a little disappointing, but Dave Pennington and Mark Loughman were in attendance, and both traded bleeds and hand strikes with me in a couple of rounds.

Personal to the Waffle King: that guy who played the 60 Computer Hacking deck, with all Caitiff crypt, at the first Ann Arbor Qualifier, was there too. He's still crazy.

I played a Tremere THA deck with a good chunk of Create Gargoyles, all of whom I named Jennifer. It made it much more personal to tell someone I was blocking with Jennifer than "Gargoyle #2." Mark Loughman even took it a step further when blocking my Create actions in the final to say, "Jennifer was tearing up the place in the first round. I have to block her before she has a chance to wreck me."

He's a kind man, that Mark. My deck failed miserably first round, stumbled into 1.5 VPs in the second, and in the third round utterly unexpectedly took a game win and 3 VP out from under Will Kristoff's excellent Synesios deck. Will is now my hero, alongside his brother.

I made the final, but was outclassed by good decks to either side of me. Plus, my predator was playing Tremere as well, getting my Martin Franckel, my Ivory Bow and my Arcane Library before I had a chance to play them. So, I was patient and appeared helpless as per the Legbiter Wounded Wing strategy for about ninety minutes, then lunged for Mark's throat. Couldn't seal the deal, though, and Will Kristoff's demise heralded my own as Mark ousted him, and David Barrish (hope I'm spelling that right) ousted me. Good times, good times.

Decklist posted to R.G.T-C.J. for those who are interested. Next tournament, November in Milwaukee. Thanks to the Milwaukee folks for helping me build my deck for today. Audio posts from the tournament posted by DJ Feng Shui at his site.

9.24.05, 11:23 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 17
written 2005-09-26 12:07:00

Honestly, I didn't know Ohio had any art, much less art within an hour's drive of here.

Saw some Picasso, some Degas, some Rembrandt. Toledo Museum of Art. Good times.

Also, Tim Horton's. I had been under the impression that Tim's was a Canadian donut joint-- I guess it turns out it's an international donut joint. I was unaware that you could get donut holes / Munchkins / "Timbits" with filling. Like, a very small jelly donut. Or lemon. (But not... the legendary Boston Creme.)

Now, homework for Federal Taxation. Did you know that if you pay for your own health insurance, the proceeds are entirely tax-deductible, but if your employer pays the premiums, you may have to report some of any proceeds as gross income. It's true, check section 104-106 of the IRC.

9.26.05, 12:07 AM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 18
written 2005-09-27 01:17:00

Inexplicably fell asleep today for about seven hours. Possible causes: insufficient sleep this weekend, which is my traditional "catch up on sleep" time; diabetic coma; depression; voodoo; an invisible gas permeating residences which lulls people to sleep for extended periods. I'm leaning toward voodoo.

(Don't worry, I went to class before losing consciousness, and did all my studying afterward.)

Now I just have to worry about getting some more sleep before class in seven hours.

9.27.05, 1:17 AM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 19
written 2005-10-02 12:27:00

It's been a good week.

10.02.05, 12:27 AM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 20
written 2005-10-04 17:42:00

I was kinda sick today. I only use the term "kinda" because it didn't involve nearly the amount of cranial agony and vomiting as the last time. Regardless, I... I missed a class.

Mea culpa!

It's cool, though - I have people I can cadge notes from, and my professor doesn't mind me bothering her after class. We discussed the history of Supreme Court Chief Justices who had not previously sat on the Court.

Also, that Mentos commercial with the chirping birds, and the parrot saying "THERE'S NO SUGAR" really creeps me out.

10.04.05, 5:42 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 21
written 2005-10-05 16:33:00

Man, what better way to feel better after a sick day than losing a pint of blood!

(No, not that way.)

My temperature was within reasonable standards, I felt fairly well, and I had been hydrating myself since the night before, so I donated blood today.

Things I learned, or should have learned before and was reminded of today:

Now, of course, I have a quiz tomorrow. It's not quite a midterm, but I think it's pretty important. So, my laundry, my minus-one-pint bloodstream and I are going to go study. And probably treat myself to dinner. You know, because of the loss of blood. (See!? It's a multipurpose excuse! I could probably rob a liquor store as long as I had my little sticker on!)

10.05.05, 4:33 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 22
written 2005-10-06 23:01:00

I got a B+ on a quiz today in Evidence. And that pisses me off.

10.06.05, 11:01 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 23
written 2005-10-07 12:40:00

by special request, this one's for the ladies.

Ladies. I have some bad news.

You'll have to pine for some other distant, handsome law student with short hair. This one's taken. Yep, I'm off the market. Spoken for. Staked, like a claim is staked? (When it gets you here, and right here?)

Of course, this only makes me sexier. You know you want what you cannot have. Rrrrowwr.

10.07.05, 12:40 AM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 24
written 2005-10-07 20:25:00

You can buy Pocky at the Lima Wal-Mart. I did not know that.

10.07.05, 8:25 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 25
written 2005-10-08 15:19:00

Frankenberry and Boo-Berry are available in stores again. Randy Milholland says its because of Halloween and I'm not inclined to disbelieve him.

You have to be in a certain state of mind to enjoy a bad kung-fu movie. If you lack that state of mind, see a Stephen Chow kung-fu movie.

10.08.05, 3:19 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 26
written 2005-10-10 22:44:00

I need to loose my sorrow somehow, and here you find the Internet. The Ada community has lost someone special - I've lost someone special.

The Hardee's on Main Street closed this weekend.

You can laugh, but I feel a true loss. I don't know if anyone's been to a Hardee's in the last three years or so, but they apparently went through some kind of reorganization that closed down more than half of their burger joints, but left the remainder with good burgers at good prices, curly fries, late hours for hard-studying college students, and a student ID deal on food that almost made buying groceries impractical from an economic standpoint.

I know I've said some harsh things about Hardee's in the past - my practice of going to a Hardee's about once every two years to remind myself of how bad they are, and why I don't go more frequently - I won't deny saying those things. But Hardee's... you know all was forgiven. You were there for me on a number of occasions, whether it was for a $2.88 burger, fries and Coke meal; for hours of studying made more feasible by unlimited self-serve refills; or for the option of hand-scooped Breyer's or Hershey's ice cream. You were there, Hardee's, and I appreciate it.

But they're gone now. I hear the lot's going to be developed for a Walgreen's. They're going to knock down the Hardee's and Carol Slane's Florist so the Walgreen's can have enough parking. Never mind the two locally-owned and -operated drug stores already present in Ada. And never mind the fact that no other restaurant in town offers Coca-Cola products for fountain drinks - everywhere else, from cafeteria to Taco Bell / Pizza Hut (shudder), hawks Pepsi products. And never mind my needs. Oh, no.

There's just nothing good about this development. Nothing good. My "meals I don't have to cook myself" options just limited themselves to KFC, Subway, and East of Chicago Pizza buffet. Not entirely appealing.

Oh, and I have a midterm on Friday. It's reputed to be hard as hell. I'm expecting nothing less. But I'm prepped, and continue to prep this week - be advised I may be harder to get ahold of, accordingly.

That's what's up here. And with you?

10.10.05, 10:44 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 27
written 2005-10-11 23:22:00

Studying. Much studying.

10.11.05, 11:22 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 28
written 2005-10-13 20:11:00


10.13.05, 8:11 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 29
written 2005-10-14 13:43:00

Okay, that sucked.

I'm going to go drown my sorrows in fast food and geeking out.

Damn confidence. I'll probably be a bit surly until I hear specifically how poorly I did on my midterm.


10.14.05, 1:43 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 30
written 2005-10-15 12:55:00

To recap - midterm was wicked hard, but I guess it was supposed to be. I don't think anyone came out of that room feeling altogether happy. So, I'll try and put it out of my mind until I know how I did.

Still... man, I'd like to do well. I really feel like I get a lot of this stuff, and it's not inconceivable that this is an area I could find work in. I don't know. We'll see.

Played games tonight, had fun. Drank caffiene after 8pm (ooooh, rebel). All set for cooking dinner for someone special tomorrow evening.

And I just remembered I'm supposed to go to a lecture tomorrow morning at 9:30. Heh. I better go fall down.

10.15.05, 12:55 AM, EDT, Ada, O-hi-o-hi-o

post 31
written 2005-10-16 12:41:00

My hair's doing a kinda Heatmiser thing lately.

At least I think it's Heatmiser. It might be Coldmiser. I really don't recall all that clearly.

Okay, I totally took it easy for a whole day and a half. Clix, awful Burger King food, shooting the shit with fellow geeks in the parking lot after a game, free tailgate party, a lecture on eminent domain, dinner and a movie with a sweet girl...

Now, back to Fed Tax and BusOrg. (shudder) It feels like you should get a longer reprieve after a midterm. But it really was a great day and a half, so I'm not complaining.

10.16.05, 12:41 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio, the American Midwest

post 32
written 2005-10-19 23:27:00

Steal my dog, key my truck

Beat me with a rubber duck

But you can't take the sky from me

Since I got back from a second showing of Serenity at the $3 Ada theater.

Since I got back from a second showing of Serenity at the $3 Ada theater.

(steel guitar solo)


10.19.05, 11:27 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio, Earth-that-was

post 33
written 2005-10-23 15:53:00

Went to Cleveland this weekend, saw the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Met the very nice Mrs. Shoemaker, who sprang for lunch for Marilla and myself. Lovely time had by all, and thanks to Carol for the meal - decent food hard to come by in Ada, especially when you don't cook much.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame seems to believe there wasn't much in the way of good music in the 1980s. While I'm not sure I disagree, there's a lot of music in that era that I feel deserves recognition. Perhaps not by the Hall of Fame's standards, sure, but still...

Congrats to my buddy Dave, who is now the law clerk and judicial commissioner for Oneida County, Wisconsin. So, he gets to clerk for the judges up there, and on weekends he gets to stand in for them while they're doing non-judicial things. I think that's awesome. I should be so lucky to get work like that myself in a year. Dave stuck it out for a good while waiting for a job like this - I hope it turns out to be a great position, well worth the wait.

All right, I have studying to do, and someone attractive offered to make me dinner tonight too.

10.23.05, 3:53 PM, EDT, Ada, Ohio, Where The Food's Not Really That Interesting

post 34
written 2005-10-27 09:45:00

Frost today. 39 degrees, give or take. Wore my gloves. Very exciting. I hear second-hand (by way of Langhorne, PA) that Bellefontaine, OH, a few miles south of here, got snow already. That's awesome.

All sorts of class rescheduling lately. Con Law cancelled, postponed to tomorrow - no BusOrg at all next week. Extra Evidence class to catch up with a cancelled class from last week, which was fall break anyway, so even less work then, even more now.

Gave up on my Two-Face Hallowe'en costume. I know, I'm a lazy slacker. But the stitching would have revealed just how little of my tailoring skills survived from Home Ec in junior high and needlepoint I picked up from my grandma.

(Oh, I was going to make a Two-Face costume for Halloween - buy two suits at a thrift store, of wildly different colors and styles, cut them in half, and sew the odd halves together.)

Marilla is cross with nature, since in her (Floridian) experience, nature should provide sun, breezes and pleasant humidity. Nature providing freezing temperatures, cold north winds and dry crisp air is not in her portfolio. Anyone wishing to advocate on behalf of "northern" weather in the fall may send statements c/o myself, and I'll forward them. Me, I love me some winter. I even love to modify nouns and verbs with the adjective "wintry."

10.27.05, 9:45 AM, EDT, Ada, Ohio, Snow Country

post 35
written 2005-10-28 11:35:00

"Term of Art."

Any term that indicates that the person using the term has gone to some kind of school and is trying to make you feel inferior, inasmuch as he has "terms of art" at his disposal, where you have none. See also, "ego punch."

Very important in the law school curriculum.

10.28.05, 11:35 AM, EDT, Ada, Ohio

post 36
written 2005-10-31 13:34:00

Morgan Spurlock was right. Eating a lot of McDonald's food is bad for you. Keith once pointed out that when people go to eat at McDonald's, they don't call it "food" - they call it "McDonald's." As in, "Do you want to go get some McDonalds?" I think there's something to that.

I was just trying to get some more of those Monopoly pieces. I wasn't making a documentary to reveal to America that McDonald's food is bad for you. (Shocking.) Which, coincidentally, is why I hate all those "Truth" and "Stand Against Tobacco" campaigns. We know, all right? Tobacco is bad for you. Shut up now.

Sorry. The last few days have been typified by fast food, some gaming, Saturday Night Live - which I don't watch much for the usual reason* - and snapping at people. I don't know.

Did you know the songs on REM's "Life's Rich Pageant" are listed out of order on the CD cover? It's true. I just put it on iTunes and realized I had to go through and listen to every track and make sure. Those crazy kids in REM.

I have all this Halloween candy to hand out today, and I don't think anyone's coming to collect it.

Does anyone think that dressing up as Zombie William Rehnquist would be in bad taste? "Braaaains! Overturn Roe v. Wade!"

I have a green lantern, oddly enough. I had it for about a month before realizing what it is. (It's not a cosmically powerful item, though, it's a Target home decor accent.) Someone just left it in the law school. Weird.

I think that's about it. Oh, I made a mediocre showing on my Fed Tax midterm, so that's a bitch. I thought I was really prepped and confident going in - I should have known better.


10.31.05, 1:34 PM, EST, Ada, Ohio, Where the veil between the world of the living and the dead is thin

post 37
written 2005-11-02 13:07:00

Oh, Morgan Spurlock's show "30 Days" (on one of those cable channels I don't have) is pretty good.

The uncompleted * reference from the last post should have been followed by a footnote reading, "It's not as funny as it used to be." That may be a fallacious or simply impractical argument, since if I wanted to, I could judge the last 25 years of SNL on the standard set by Radner, Belushi, Chase, Ackroyd. And is that really fair? I ask you.

I wasn't Zombie William Rehnquist for Halloween. I was Local Student With Candy Whose House All The Trick Or Treaters Ignore Out Of A Mistaken Belief That All College Students (Undergrad and Graduate) Don't Participate In The Giving Part Of American Halloween Tradition. I'm told it was a fairly believeable costume. I think it was pretty original, m'self.

Anyone wishing to see additional content here at the page should e-mail the webministrator. (Me.) For example, I'm listening to Belle and Sebastian, "The State That I Am In," right now. It's from Tigermilk. Do you care? Do you want to know what I had for lunch? Your feedback is an important part of our operations here at

Not really. Fine. You got me. But I'm interested anyway.

Happy All Souls Day, y'all.

11.02.05, 1:07 PM, EST, Ada, Ohio, Did you think I was going to miss the switch from Daylight to Standard Time? You did, didn't you?

post 38
written 2005-11-03 00:00:00

Aiiieee! I'm old!

11.03.05, 12:00 midnight, EST, Ada, Ohio

post 39
written 2005-11-03 08:46:00

I've discovered how dangerous it can be to have Deeee-lite's "Groove Is In The Heart" playing while shaving.

I recall learning how dangerous it can be to have Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" playing while operating a meat cutter.

11.03.05, 8:46 AM, EST, Ada, Ohio, Land of Lessons

post 40
written 2005-11-03 09:31:00

Example of stuff I might include in my webjournal.

Upcoming films in my Netflix queue:

Embarrassing admission: the two films in shipping right now from Netflix are "High Roller: The Stu Ungar Story" and "Tenchi Forever: Tenchi Muyo in Love 2." There's a little contrast for you.

11.03.05, 9:31 AM, EST, Ada, Ohio, Home of the $3 Theather

post 41
written 2005-11-03 10:06:00

I really like the new nickel.

11.03.05, 10:06 AM, EST, Ada, Ohio

post 42
written 2005-11-04 12:15:00

Thanks to everyone who sent well-wishes. They were warmly received and made for a very busy day, communications-wise.

Good birthday! Didn't skip class, wasted a lot of time writing a lot of journal entries that I won't be posting. Putting unreasonable expectations on oneself to have something noteworthy to say every half-hour or so is really impractical. I'm still not entirely over the needlessly self-important feeling that having a webjournal inflicts on me.

Eh. Anyway, on the to good stuff:

Whew. Lots of fun last night, and thanks to everyone that came out. Actually, those people are all local, and I think the readership of the page here is all extralocal. I'll thank them in person.

The 30s aim to be an exciting decade in the life.

11.04.05, 12:15 PM, EST, Ada, Ohio, Dire Straits' "Heavy Fuel"

post 46
written 2005-11-07 12:00:00

Be kind to me, or treat me mean

I'll make the most of it, I'm an extraordinary machine

--Fiona Apple

11.07.05, mid-day, EST, the Midwest

post 44
written 2005-11-07 12:24:00

Added entries from last Thursday that were left on my iBook.

11.07.05, 12:24 PM, EST, Ada, Ohio

post 45
written 2005-11-07 12:34:00

The best part of the movie The Matrix: Reloaded is the bit from Keanu Reeves fighting half a dozen other superhuman martial artists with archaic weapons, through Carrie-Anne Moss and Laurence Fishburne fighting the twin wraiths, through the big extended chase scene / fight scene on the freeway, ending with Fishburne killing an SUV with a katana. The subsequent superhuman fistfight on the back of the tractor-trailer is good too, but as an ending image, it's got to be Katana 1, SUV 0. The rest of the movie: ehhh.

That's totally not what I intended to put down for this entry. I wonder what it was? Hmm. If I think of it, I'll try and get it next time. It may have had something to do with those lists I posted in the last couple days. I had to figure that out in HTML. Didn't really work a few times.

11.07.05, 12:34 PM, EST, Ada, Ohio, The Matrix

post 43
written 2005-11-07 12:46:00

Oh, so I cut off the bottom of the journal and put it in a different file - then forgot to make that file available. Down at the bottom of the page is a link to all the past journal entries. Thanks to Mikey for pointing out my inadequacies.

So, I think I cause the Eagles to lose when I watch them. I watched the Dallas game. I saw some of the Broncos game. Tonight I watched part of the game - the part where they went from a 7-0 lead to a 10-7 deficit. Then, I IM'ed Mikey for a bit, and when I looked back up, they had tied it 10-10. The Redskins were heading for the end zone when I made a conscious decision to change the channel, for the good of the team.

Does anyone know if they won?

Saw Cameron Crowe's Elizabethtown tonight. It was good, as I've come to expect from him, but I wonder if it's too hard to live up to his own legend sometimes. There were points in the movie where I had trouble suspending my disbelief... either he's losing some of his magic or I'm getting jaded. Good film overall, though. Recommended.

Apparently good will is worth money. I hope this is made more clear in Bus Org tomorrow. I understand good will being an asset, and good will being transferable (I think), but I have trouble putting a dollar value on it, particularly from a decedent to an heir. We'll see.

Time to drink water and get some sleep. Must study and do laundry tomorrow. Make dinner. Get on a productive kick to take me through the end of the year. Fascinating fact - less than one month remains before finals begin.

Oh, Saturday Night Live should not run clip shows in the usual SNL timeslot.

11.07.05, 12:46 AM, EST, Ada, Ohio

post 47
written 2005-11-08 10:41:00

Intellectual Property was closed out when I tried to register. Stupid third-years getting preferential treatment. "Oh, I'm graduating! I'm special! Waaaa!"

That's fine, I didn't want to take it anyway! Jerks! (barely restrained weeping)

But now I have to find 2 hours of something to fill my schedule to meet an ABA standard for third-year law student practical experience, or I can't work at the law clinic this summer. Law and Economics? Con Law would be interesting, but I'd rather have both Con Law I and II under my belt before moving on. Insurance Bad Faith Litigation sounds interesting, but probably not in my future.


11.08.05, 10:41 AM, EST, Ada, Ohio, Home of the regionally-well-regarded Ohio Northern University

post 48
written 2005-11-11 14:43:00

Forgot me a header rulin' down yonder!

Naw, don't check it now, I done fixed it.

Anyway, I'm going to get the hell out of Dodge and head up to the land where cold winds, Great Lakes, and professional sports teams with losing records are the order of the day. Yes, folks, I'm going to go on up to Milwaukee for the weekend, see some good people, get some cheap drinks, play some new cards.

You're all dismissed for the weekend. Feel free to work on your outlines while I'm gone. Remember exams are about three weeks away. Good luck, and I'll see you on Monday.

11.11.05, 2:43 PM, EST, Dodge, Ohio. Happy Armistice Day!

post 49
written 2005-11-14 05:27:00

Not dead. Tired, but not dead. Just got home.

5:27 AM, 11.14.05, yikes

post 50
written 2005-11-14 17:55:00

Okay, recovery mainly complete. Now catching up.

Weekend was great. Long drives both ways, but a new route from south of Chicago to Milwaukee has been discovered, which involves paying no tolls to the Evil State of Illinois. The Wisconsinites have a term, "F.I.B.s," which refers to Illinoisians. Their oppressive practices of taxing travelers through their stupid state is a major reason for this term, in my opinion.

Great weather. Warm, breezy, still autumnal, but not unnecessarily biting or chilly.

Much love to all the good people in the Good Land, and the greater metropolitan Good Land region. Especially those lovable purveyors of all things game-related, Fortress Games in Menonomee Falls. I guess they read this page, which was kind-of shocking to me - I thought there were about six people reading at any given time, and one of them was always asking him- or herself, "Man, I should really be reading something more worthwhile." Thanks for the gamespace, Mike and Company. Great to see all y'all again.

Cards - fun. Saturday was an exercise in "just how badly can I perform" and I think I did quite well under that standard. Big Setites with DOM didn't serve me as well as they've served Buerger in the past. So be it. Sunday was the pre-release, so we all got to see new cards, clans and vampires. I played Guruhi because I liked the sound of the name. I spent a lot of time enjoying the African nomenclature, and periodically would bust out into African song. Also, I won. Yay me! Really, it was a matter of table seating. I chose the other Guruhi deck as my prey, and then contested 2 of his 3 vampires. After that, I made a deal with Jill to get her a VP and get me the table. Lately, I don't perform that well at final tables, so I was pretty pleased.

Cosmic Nexus: Landmark! Good to see all the good people at Landmark. Someone tell Sarah I'm sorry I missed her Saturday night on my way out. It was getting a little bit crowded, a little bit hipster, a little bit Marquette in there, if you know what I'm saying. Also, had to go hit Checkers for the excellent french fries on the drive home.

Thanks again to Bear and Jill for the hospitality. I'd offer mine in return, but no one in their right minds wants to come to Ada, OH, and even fewer want to stay for any length of time.

I have to go open a bunch of cards now, read Evidence, and think about dinner. Oh, also, think about getting my body back to a diurnal schedule.

11.14.05, 5:55 PM, EST, Ada, Ohio, Home to no game stores or comic shops or Checkers

post 51
written 2005-11-15 20:31:00

In response to popular request:

Some attractive woman agreed to have her picture taken with me.


11.15.05, 8:31 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 52
written 2005-11-16 18:43:00

Slept a long time this afternoon. Ideally, that's just my body still recovering from the weekend, and not something to do with the minor cold I seem to have, or having anything to do with astral parasites leeching the strength of my soul. (Oh, no, wait, that's Bus Org.)

11.16.05, 6:43 PM, EST, Ada, OH, Home of the colorless odorless gas

post 53
written 2005-11-16 19:51:00

It snowed today.

Y'all know I dig that. I dig it the most.

11.16.05, 7:51 PM, EST, Ada, OH, good thoughts to the NE folks getting the remains of the tornado-spawning windstorm

post 54
written 2005-11-19 18:39:00

I paid $1.92 / gallon for gas yesterday. That's encouraging.

(it can't last)

11.19.05, 6:39 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 55
written 2005-11-21 21:20:00

Buckaroo Banzai Across the Fifth Dimension was on TV last night. I didn't watch it because I was trying to work on my Evidence take-home final, but I'm enthused that BB is popular enough to run on fairly-prime-time time slots in the very mainstream TV channels I get.

Star Wars watches now available at Burger King. Consumer slave that I am, I admit, I got one. It has Yoda and Christopher Lee on it. (I prefer to say Christopher Lee because "Count Dooku" sounds scatological.) It came in a "collector's tin" which I usually could care less about, but it appeals to me in that "cool looking container for whatever you want to put in it" way that usually strikes me when I'm at The Bombay Company.

Back to Evidence. Hearsay is much trickier than any of you think.

11.21.05, 9:20 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 56
written 2005-11-23 16:32:00

First substantial snowfall of the winter. It was snowing when I went to class today at 8am, and is still snowing now. I'd be utterly pleased if I didn't have to drive 15 miles to Lima to shop for Thanksgiving-type items. As is, I'm still pretty pleased.

11.23.05, 4:32 PM, EST, Ada, OH, Wintertime

post 57
written 2005-11-25 17:14:00

"First substantial snowfall of the winter" didn't turn out the way I had imagined, and as such that title is still waiting to be claimed. Snow yesterday, snow on the 23 as noted below, all of it miserable ornamental stuff not worth putting on different footwear. Bah.

Long weekend. Bring on the not-going-to-class and the working-at-home-because-the-library's-closed-so-employees-can-get-a-break-too-dammit.

And I just put up plastic sheeting on my windows to help with the insulation of my apartment. Y'ever have to do that? Dammit. Let me reiterate. Dammit. It's done now though.

Who needs a drink?

11.25.05, 5:14 PM, EST, Ada, OH, Black Friday (ha ha, you sorry jerks who left the house today! ha ha!)

post 58
written 2005-11-26 15:14:00

Continuation of a theme: complaining about the weather never did anyone any good.

Nevertheless: the forecast for the next couple of days looks like: Saturday, 40 F. Sunday, 51 F. Monday, 63 F!?? What the F? (That's Fahrenheit, people.) Sure, it drops back to 46 F on Tuesday, and then to reasonable temperatures the following week, but still.

Right. Off to review stuff so my weekend isn't wholly loungey.

11.26.05, 3:14 PM, EST, Ada, OH, Listening to XPN

post 59
written 2005-11-26 15:16:00

Archive. Journal guy. Picture of a badger.

post 60
written 2005-11-27 21:46:00


11.27.05, 9:46 PM, EST, Ada, OH, delayed by a long-running football game

post 61
written 2005-11-30 20:01:00

Typing poorly today because of the band-aid on my right middle finger and the bandange on the inside of my elbow, and spelling poorly as well because of the blood loss.

Nope, you're not reading my creepy last will and e-testament, as I lay bleeding and wounded amidst the bodies of the assassins they sent to silence me... no, it's not that. I just gave blood again.

I feel like I can't live up to that last post about blood donation. That was a good post. This time around the exsanguinator wasn't as good, there was no skinny girl to feel sorry for, just showing up, tapping a vein, and going on my way.

Though I have been a good bit loopy since the exsanguination. Had pizza at Padrone's (which does a decent job of resisting my dad's "West of Pittsburgh, South of Baltimore" rule for finding good pizza. Not amazing or anything, but real pizza, as it ought to be made.

Now, the magic of Evidence. I figure if I prep for class and study for the exam as well, that's a good chunk of my prep for that one done. Evidence isn't until last, Dec. 16. First one's Fed Tax, but Prof. Lobenhofer has a crazy-ass long study session for that on Friday. (The Friday before finals week, and he schedules a study session. It's like he knows how to hurt a guy.) It's probably going to be very useful study stuff, though, so I'm skipping my weekly trip to Lima for groceries and gaming.

11.30.05, 8:01 PM, EST, Ada, OH, through a fine haze of blood loss

post 62
written 2005-12-01 12:25:00

It's snowing but not accumulating

Fa la la la la, la la la la

First real snowfall, I'm still waiting

Fa la la la la, la la la la

Might warm up later, become rain

Fa la la, la la la, la la laaa

Predictable weather forecast again

Fa la la la laaaa, la la, la laaaaa

12.1.05, 12:25 PM, EST, Ada, Oh, Bust Open Those Advent Calendars Y'all

post 63
written 2005-12-02 11:24:00

And just like that, another semester down.

That's weird. I absolutely feel like A) there should be more classes this week, and B) there should be more classes in the two weeks to come.

That's ridiculous, because A) it's Friday, and B) the next two weeks are exam weeks. Tuesday starts it off, then Friday, then Monday, then Friday, then I'm Audi. There will be a lot of studying between then and now. There will probably be some messed up sleep schedules, though lately I've been doing a fair job of waking up between 6am and 7am every day to get conditioned to it for my two 8:30 am exams. My brain's already in a form of neural shutdown, where I can't really concern myself with anything except exam material. My right arm is suffering from what can only be repetitive-stress disorder pains, since I don't lift anything heavier than my books these days. (Though it's about thirty-forty pounds of books, I reckon.) I'm not napping in the afternoons anymore, for no reason other than I'm constantly thinking about studying.

Right now, though, I'm just going to have some lunch and maybe watch Brazil, by Terry Gilliam. And, in three hours, go to a review session for Fed Tax, estimated to last at least three hours, but probably no more than eight. (sigh)

12.2.05, 11:24 AM, EST, Ada, OH, chill winds and such

post 64
written 2005-12-05 13:33:00

Not a lot to say except that I'm slowly freaking out more and more as my exam draws near. I imagine this cycle will continue as each exam is passed, then the next one approaches.

Is freaking out worse when it's slower? I don't know. I guess there's pros and cons both ways.

More studying.

12.5.05, 1:33 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 65
written 2005-12-06 17:30:00

My writing hand hurts, my head hurts, and my confidence is way down.

One down, three to go.

12.6.05, 5:30 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 67
written 2005-12-08 16:18:00

Okay, my head and my writing hand are okay, but now the small of my back is aching. Too much standing upright? Is my posture too good? I haven't shoveled all that much snow, so it can't be that.

So, I'm walking back from my Bus Org final, and trying to decide if I should walk in the fields and yards (snowy, drifting to two feet or more, no sidewalks in this part of town) or in the street (unplowed but pushed down by the passage of cars). As if on cue, a crappy, rust-bitten 80's model little pickup truck comes barrelling down the road. Barrelling in these conditions is only about 35 or 40, but you know what I'm saying. Every two or three seconds, he fishtails his back end. Keep in mind, in order to do that every two or three seconds, he has to yank his truck around in the other direction. I waited for him to realize he was an idiot and start driving at a normal speed for conditions, without all the "I want to crash into someone's house" driving skillz. None of these things occurred, so I quickly leapt into someone's yard. I hope no property owners minded. The truck-drivin' bozo continued his merry way down the road, oncoming traffic pulling off into driveways and snowdrifts, oblivious to every and any other thing on the road. (sigh) Life in Ohio isn't so bad you should kill yourself by driving like an ass on snow-coated roads. C'mon!

Two down, two to go. I understand the Con Law final is going to be a bit more demanding than some of my classmates thought. I have a study session with one or more of them scheduled for Sunday. It's never too late to get more studying done, right?

Personal to Chuck and Mikey: in my Bus Org essay, I argued against Delaware. (Well, the practice of allowing other states' companies to incorporate there, but I framed in terms of railing against Delaware as an entity.) I got your back.

12.8.05, 4:18 PM, Eastern Snowy Time, Ada, OH, where plowing the roads is optional

post 66
written 2005-12-08 23:15:00

Winter weather advisory today. Truly, all is well with the world. I'm looking forward to walking to my Bus Org exam in six inches of snow tomorrow.

Comic Connection closed its doors today. It will be missed, and I will not look forward to driving all the way to Findlay for comics. (But I'll do it.) But, no more Heroclix tournaments until we get something going somewhere else.

This weekend does not bode well for me. Friday, exam. Saturday, studying, Sunday, studying. Monday, another exam. One for which I will have had only two days of uninterrupted preparedness. After that, a big four day gap until Friday, and Evidence.

Then, the homestead. The ancient ruins. The familial estate.

Has anyone heard of the movies "3-Iron" or "November"? Or seen "House of Flying Daggers" or "Layer Cake"? All of these were in the previews for Kung Fu Hustle, which I watched for the first time after buying the DVD a while back. I think I want to see all of these films.

Right, then. Sleep.

12.8.05, 11:15 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 68
written 2005-12-12 17:19:00

Whoof. Three down, one to go. I'm giving myself the rest of the day off.

Con Law a bit easier than the practice exams I studied, and I hope I hit all the issues. I did not have an opportunity to argue against the existence of Delaware this time, though I did get to invoke the spirits of Jefferson and Hamilton, and I love to invoke Hamilton. He's under a lot of people's radar. You know?

Turns out the little blonde on Food Network is Giada something. Nice.

I would like to see a poker table of all the meanest, most unpleasant pro players. Phil Hellmuth, Devil Fish... probably Scotty Nguyen. Who else belongs at that table? I want trash talk and surly attitudes. I want the players to compete for who the audience cares least about. The commentators can be all the nice guys - Lederer, Gus Hansen, Chris "Jesus" Ferguson. I'd watch that.

Mmmm. I could go for some Faith No More right about now. And I have Angel Dust on cassette. And I have a cassette player! It's like it was meant to be.

12.12.05, 5:19 pm, EST, Ada, OH

post 69
written 2005-12-14 16:21:00

Light snow today, rain all day tomorrow. Guess which one I have to drive to Dayton in? Heh.

Evidence studying requiring greater effort. There's a lot to remember. But keep in mind, while you cannot introduce proof of remedial measures as proof of liability for a given condition (to which the remedy is applied), you can use it as proof of something else - notice or control, for example.

Back continues to hurt, though it migrated north up to my sub-shoulder region. Stupid back pain.

I'd like to go on record as saying that my normally-favorable stance on the death penalty was thrown into disarray by Tookie Williams. I think if Schwartzenegger had received a letter from a given number of kids saying, "I didn't get involved in gangs because of Tookie's work," he should have pardoned him. But I think that may have been predetermined.

On iTunes right now: Coldplay, X&Y. Recently, Mystery Science Theater 3000, Clowns in the Sky.

12.14.05, 4:21 pm, EST, Ada, OH

post 70
written 2005-12-17 13:12:00

I could have sworn I wrote another entry yesterday when I got the server names straightened out. Huh.

12.17.05, 1:12 pm, EST, Ada, OH

post 71
written 2005-12-17 13:40:00

A couple of things -

The site was down briefly while Mikey moved to Chicago. The server at least. Then, just to be a jerk, he temporarily changed the names of the servers so that no one could read my webjournal. That's all straightened out now.

Exams done, brain contracting back to a "normal" size. Drove way the heck out into Nowhere, Ohio, last night to play some games. We played in a bar that didn't serve liquor, and kept its soda and beer in two white, regular, stand up fridges behind the bar. Weird place, but I guess they get along.

I was going to drive home today, but it would have necessitated bringing all dirty laundry home and coming back to the apartment in January all messy. So, today, laundry and cleaning. Also, another day to let the roads get better from the storm that hit here in Ohio, then went east to hit PA.

Tomorrow: the big drive. I was going to go I-80, but I might wuss out and take the Turnpike because it has the potential to be safer. We'll see. I just don't like how curvy and hilly the Northeast Extension is, especially in winter.

Today's going to be a nice day for not studying, I think.

12.17.05, 1:40 pm, EST, Ada, OH

post 72
written 2006-01-06 19:19:00

I'm back. You can all relax now. I have to go unload my car.

1.6.06, 7:19 pm, EST, Ada, OH, 2006: the year before the year when everything went to hell

post 73
written 2006-01-09 16:21:00

Fickle chaos, which meddles in all things, has seen fit to force me to take a seminar class that I'm not all that interested in.

See, I was going to take Criminal Procedure, get myself some knowledge on the criminal side of things to go with all the estates, gifts, wills, etc, that I'm taking on Mondays (or Martindays as I'm calling them, as I have no one but brand-new Professor Martin on those days, two classes). But, I only reach this decision after class selection is closed last November. But, Dean Christoff says that the class is underenrolled (along with Civil Practice, which I'm also signed up for). So, today, I walk into room 125 and there are literally no seats available. This is unheard of. The law school's classrooms anticipate a huge turnout for some classes; some classes are required, some are just obvious choices, there's always that chance for a huge turnout. But these are lecture halls I'm talking about. Probably ten rows of deskspace, room for ten across. And it's full.

So, I'm not taking Criminal Procedure. And if you recall, I didn't get into Intellectual Property. So, that's two options down. I signed up for a class to keep my hours at a level that my advisor would accept - Constitutional Law Seminar. That sounds good, but the professor is a different prof from my Con Law prof, upstate New York native Joanne Brant. And I was told by a certain someone (a most attractive someone, you might find a picture of her on this journal somewhere) that said professor could be a poor choice, and would incur more grief than 2 hours of seminar is worth.

Yet here I am, signed up for Con Law Seminar and no other obvious options. So, I guess I make run at it. Furter updates as they become available.

1.9.06, 4:21 pm, EST, Ada, OH, Flatland

post 74
written 2006-01-09 16:29:00

Oh, if you can, spit on a US Bank today.

Many of you know how I went broke over vacation, but the lack of income and the lack of US Bank branches in Bucks County and the lack of help from the US Bank call center forced me to accept the overdraft and simply stop spending money. (Not counting the fake money that Visa represents.)

So today I go in, and explain my situation, and ask if they'll take off the bizarre number of charges that posted after I went into the negative numbers, after I was aware of my overdraft. And all I got was a lot of double talk and sneering refusals. I imagine that might be a valid business strategy in a town full of college kids who are one phone call away from a trust fund disbursement, but I tried to indicate that I was not one of that pampered class.

Still no dice.

So, I haggle and haggle and finally, she takes off the negative balance fees. $56, at $7 per day (??). Then, she says she'll take off half of the overdraft charges if I sign up for overdraft protection. I agree, since I know I'm closing this account as soon as I pay it up to positive numbers. Then, when she calculates the half of my fees, she adds the $56 back in. So, I end up having to pay half of the $56 which she already agreed was not proper for me to pay? Dastardly.

I'll get all my money in there, probably get a credit card from them as a result of signing up for overdraft protection, then take all my money out and walk a block north to Mom and Pop's Ada Bank. It won't change anything and it might cost me a little something in fees, but I don't care. Screw US Bank, screw their opportunitistic business practices, screw their refusal to dialogue about the situation. I'm not a huge stickler for customer service - my usual stance is that the person who has to serve is underpaid and underappreciated, so you should be nicer to them. But, not this time, pal.

1.9.06, 4:29 pm, EST, Ada, OH, home to US Bank, PepsiCo, Subway and soon Rite Aid

post 75
written 2006-01-12 07:45:00

Books are expensive. Books for law school moreso. Books for 15 credit-hours of law school proportionally moreso.

And then the stuff in them is hard to figure out!

They should make a law about that or something.

Two paperback books for Civil Pratice: $140 total. One hardcover for Legal Profession, a class in which, I am reliably informed, only the lectures are considered for test material: $100. And I'm still broke (until tomorrow) so my Visa bill will look frightening for about a month.

1.12.06, 7:45 AM, EST, Ada, OH

post 76
written 2006-01-12 13:00:00

I'm enjoying City of Heroes. If anyone wants to come fight crime with me, look for @TheHZA on the global channel.

1.12.06, 1:00 PM, EST, Paragon City

post 77
written 2006-01-12 14:59:00

So, the other day I see a university groundskeeper circling a hedge. I think nothing of it. Then I hear a clicking noise, and I look a little closer, and he has some kind of device he's aiming at the ground around the hedge. There's a long stem or wand projecting from the device. My first thought, it's a Geiger counter. I don't really know what they look like, but I'm pretty comfortable with this idea. I walk on, uncertain why the school would need to check the radiation exposure of its shrubbery.

Anyway, the next day I'm walking by the same hedge, and a university truck is parked on the sidewalk by the hedge. And as I'm walking by, a man emerged from the earth behind the hedge.

Please stay with me. This is the part where people usually start frowning at me in disbelief. Like, "C'mon, Heslin, there wasn't really a Muppet being held captive in the back of that station wagon." I know what I saw!

Yes, a man came up out of the ground, right behind that hedge that the guy was scanning for radiation the day before. There were sawhorses up, blocking off an area just off the sidewalk, and a neat hole had been dug of sufficient depth to conceal a full-grown man. And while I watched, that full-grown man climbed up from this hole to retrieve something from his truck.

So, I'm not certain what to do now. If I investigate, I could blow open a state-supported cover-up. I could be irradiated. But what if there's a radioactive bunker below the arts building? What if I'm the only one who saw it?

Any input on what I should do in this situation will be accepted.

1.12.06, 2:59 PM, EST, Ada, OH, The Truth Is Out Here

post 78
written 2006-01-12 20:07:00

Oh, and I might stay with US Bank to avoid having to re-enter all of my bank card, account numbers and routing numbers with all of my e-billing services.

Sometimes the degree of my laziness astounds even me. My rage had time to die down and become complacency.

1.12.06, 8:07 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 79
written 2006-01-14 11:37:00

And no sooner do I write that I'm not angry at US Bank anymore, than they anger me again.

Did you know the charge for having them honor a check or a bank card use is the same as the charge for having them refuse a check or a bank card use for insufficient funds? It's true!

Did you know that casual disregard for customers, a bland refusal to adhere to the simplest social niceties, and double-dealing business sensibility are all S.O.P. for US Bank? It's true!

Now I have to weigh a continuing rage against my desire to not have to rewrite my online financial identity. I wonder if they know that's a weapon in their marketing arsenal. Jerks.

Saw Walk The Line last night. Good, good movie. Anyone who missed it should check it out on DVD, or the $1.50 theater like I did. Even if just for the passing appearances of Sam Phillips, Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis, and Roy Orbison - the last three of whom, like Phoenix and Witherspoon, did all their own vocals.

1.14.06, 11:37 AM, EST, Ada, OH, it snowed a little last night

post 80
written 2006-01-16 22:34:00

So, I said to the barber, "just take it down to half-an-inch."

And I still look like Heatmiser. (sigh)

1.16.06, 10:34 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 81
written 2006-01-18 17:58:00

As I write this, I'm in the law library, in a recliner, reclining. There's snow on the ground, I'm facing a wall of windows, and night's falling. I've just finished reading some cases on the Fifth Amendment protection against takings (most notably the Kelo v. New London eminent domain case that made the news this summer). I'm about to go get the book for my seminar class and probably take it home with me so I can read after dinner. Lunch was a Dr. Pepper and some peanut butter crackers, so dinner sounds like a pretty good idea. My phone works again, thanks to Bren for sending my charger (heh, you know, I forget something every time I travel).

There's going to be some kind of country-based baseball tournament in March. The World Baseball Classic, or something? Looks neat.

I need to figure out a topic for my Constitutional Law paper - I'm thinking about judicial activism, since I know little about it and I would bring a minimum of preconceptions to the table. I need to read for Legal Profession, but like Civil Practice, the lectures seem to be more central to the course than the texts. There will be two lectures in the next two weeks or so, and I've enjoyed all the lectures I've been to here.

All in all, things are pretty good. They could sure as hell be a lot worse.

1.18.06, 5:58 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 82
written 2006-01-21 12:30:00

So, I'll be examining the "judicial activism" of the Supreme Court under Chief Justice Earl Warren - widely considered to have been one of the more activist courts in recent history - in comparison with the judicial activism of the Rehnquist Court, with close attention to matters of criminal procedure.

Oh, c'mon, that's interesting. C'mon! I get the impression the professor wants me to make a point about how "judicial activism" all a matter of perspective, most likely of a partisan nature.

Saw "The Family Stone" last night. Didn't really like it. I think the writer/director was trying to make most of the characters sympathetic by having their patience tried by cosmopolitan Sarah Jessica Parker. A little word of advice: don't try and make a character sympathetic by having them hate Sarah Jessica Parker. We love Sarah Jessica Parker. Therefore we hate your characters.

Oh, and US Bank is still refusing to accept my check card! Isn't that sweet? I gave them a check for many many dollars - a week ago - and apparently I'm not allowed to have it yet. I understand, of course. This probably falls under their "We've Already Established You're A Jerk And Reserve The Right To Keep Screwing You" policy.

If you get a chance, listen to The New Pornographers.

1.21.06, 12:30 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 83
written 2006-01-27 10:27:00


My head hurts, my neck hurts, I yawned a little bit ago and my tongue hurt. I have another class in three hours. I'm bewildered. I'm single again.

This is clearly not my week. I'm going to take a nap, or drink some caffiene or something. I don't want to be sick all weekend. I will be calling people and bitterly complaining about being sick over the weekend if it happens. Therefore, you don't want me to be sick, either.

1.27.06, 10:27 AM, EST, Ada, OH

post 84
written 2006-01-30 12:51:00

Thanks for all the kind words and thoughts regarding my health. I'm feeling better now.

Friday night, my check card still didn't work. I swear US Bank was actively trying to make me insane. Actively. I called their phone center and got it cleared up. (Recall, last time I called the call center they claimed only the local branch could help me. Damn them all anyway.) I'm considering the value, both in practical results and personal gratification, of going to the local branch and asking them if they enjoy screwing with their customers - if it gives them some sort of twisted satisfaction.

Other than that, did some homework, watched some TV, played some CoH. CoH continues to run poorly on my computer. Hope to have that problem addressed this week. I hate that the performance of a computer program can elicit such quick, direct action on my part, like a skilled marrionetteer. Or, a half-assed marrionetteer. Either way.

I'm feeling discontent. Or entering some stupid "long dark night of the soul" phase. I hate that. I also hate that Susan's stupid weekly astrology e-mail virtually predicted that. There's a lot of things I hate.

I do enjoy Chex Mix, though. There is that.

1.30.06, 12:51 AM, EST, Ada, OH, past my bedtime, outside the good pizza availability zone

post 85
written 2006-02-01 08:24:00

Bring on February. I guess if January wants to be a collaborator, and roll over to the oppressor Spring, that's it's business. But we will boycott all Vichy January products, like that miserable little attempt at snow yesterday morning. No winter, no peace.

Bring on February, the month that knows what's up with winter, the month that's not afraid to show us what is meant by "deep" into winter. Bring it on.

Vive la resistance.

2.1.06, 8:24 AM, EST, Ada, OH

post 86
written 2006-02-01 20:09:00

I'm a pint short. You'll have to forgive me. I do enjoy giving blood, I do. I just can't always predict the consequences.

Attention, webjournal fans! You love to read about my activities, now you can mimic at least one of them in your own life! For the first time ever, I present, The Heslin Diet.

You can stop that South Beach and Atkins and Eat Only Things That Start With The Letter "P" and Wear A Rubber Suit Until You Almost Pass Out diets! This is the real deal, folks. Check it out:

First, you don't eat anything from the time you get up until, oh, 5 or 7pm.

Then, you eat whatever you want from 7pm until midnight.

Then, you sleep.

When you wake up, begin the process over again! Repeat until you hit your target weight. It's simple, and it's fun!

The Heslin Diet is great because, like the US Constitution, it foresees situations that cannot be directly addressed by its tenets. That's right! If you find an all-you-can-eat Buffalo Wing Nite somewhere, and they're willing to keep serving you past midnight, go ahead! If you reach 7pm and still don't want to eat, you can wave off eating for a night. No one minds. We're all very understanding.

My personal divergence from the Heslin Diet - yes, even I go outside these rules once in a while! - is to eat a single Hershey's Kiss in the fasting period from waking to 7pm. Just one. It's chocolate, which is nice, and is an appetite suppressant, which makes me sound like I know what I'm talking about! Everybody wins!

Give it a try, and if you aren't satisfied with your results, tough! Maybe you just didn't do it long enough. Did you ever think of that? Huh!?

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to finish the drink from my KFC dinner.

2.1.06, 8:09 PM, EST, Ada, OH, well past the time when I'm allowed to eat KFC

post 87
written 2006-02-04 19:37:00

It's snowing, it's snowing, naa-naa-naa-na-naaaa-aaaa. I knew this weather couldn't keep up. February, you came through like a champ.

Of course, this means I'll have to go and study during/after the Super Bowl. No big deal, I can keep up on scores (and how much money I win in the pool: Steelers 7, Seahawks 0 or Steelers 4, Seahawks 0) online without interrupting my reading. Though I will miss those fabled Super Bowl commercials.

Which weren't even that good, last time I watched them with any interest. Though they suffer from a natural amount of hype, I think - someone paid $2 million for this 30 seconds? It better pay off.

Hey, I finally have a bank card. However, it's been about three weeks since I made my student loan deposit. During that time I've been unable to access any of that money personally without physically entering the bank, filling out bank foms and proving my identity. The whole purpose of check cards is to avoid that rigamarole. (Yeah, that's right, I called it rigamarole, and I did so unironically. Y'wanna fight about it?)

And, since it's a new bank card, I have to re-input its numbers into all my of online payment services and programs.

Which begs the question: why am I staying with US Bank again? Earlier, I suggested it was because I was too lazy to reinput all this stuff. That point's moot now. So... here's my plan:

I go into the branch, I explain the three weeks of financial deprivation, and I ask if they'll do anything to compensate me for it. If they'll make a gesture. If they have any interest in keeping me happy. And if not, I take all my money and go down the block to Liberty Bank.

We'll see. I might waffle. I'm bad like that.

Heroclix and comic books this morning. Won three matches out of three, which is nice, but lost first place on points.

More later.

2.4.06, 7:37 PM, EST, Ada, OH, apparently I think I'm funnier than I really am when I'm low on blood

post 88
written 2006-02-04 21:25:00

A poem.

Oh, sweet fragile Robinette...

spread your wings and fly! Fly far away where they can't hurt you

with their cruel taunts and

your haircut looks just fine to me

just fine.

We will celebrate our union in Valhalla.

--Keith Szewczuga

2.4.06, 9:25 PM, EST, Ada, OH, where Law & Order and the fine arts come together

post 89
written 2006-02-05 23:24:00

Go Steelers, not for any specific reason. I think their coach kinda looks like my high school Phys Ed teacher (Physical Ed Walsh, for those who know), Ben Roethlisberger (or however you spell it) is from Findlay, OH, just up the road from here, and as Marty and Drew and I were discussing over the holidays, there's something appealing about teams that have some kind of industry background (Packers, Chargers).

Also, I think I won a few bucks in the pool. Steelers 7, Seattle 0 at the end of the third quarter. Go me, then.

Congratulations, Pina, on the new job!

2.5.06, 11:24 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 90
written 2006-02-07 12:55:00

Mikey tells me that the fictitious "Heslin Diet" described below is in substance identical to an actual, commerically available diet. As a result, please note my disclaimer that the below diet is not intended in any way as an attempt at the commercialization of or advocacy in favor of starving yourself for a significant portion of your day. It was some funny babbling I was doing while I was experiencing noticeable blood loss. (Well, funny to me at the time. Think about that.)

Mikey also says the diet doesn't work. I guess if you wait all day to eat something, you make sure it's something that's really really bad for dieting in general. So don't do it. I was only coincidentally following that eating schedule last week - I don't eat breakfast 95% of the time, and I'm working through the day so skipping lunch is easy enough.

Plus, I think I'm going to be poor for a while. The fees that USBank ran up on me combined with the costs I had to put on my credit card are preventing me from just paying off the credit card. (My plan was to put things on the credit card until I got my loan money, then pay off the credit card in total. If I did that now, I'd be broke again before the end of the semester.)

So, I'll be paying off my credit month by month and budgeting the heck out of myself. I'm also sticking with USBank after hearing from a friend who had a very bad experience with them. I don't need to provoke them into any kind of retribution. I wouldn't be concerned with retribution if USBank hadn't already demonstrated a complete disregard for a normal business-customer care relationship. This'll be the last time I complain about it, since at this point I'm signing up for the nightmare - removing my right to outrage. I know it's a bad deal, so I've got no right to expect sympathy for being in a bad deal.

And I still don't know what I'm doing this summer. There's a few classes I can take, and work at the Clinic is good work experience. Since I'm paying for the apartment regardless, it makes a certain amount of sense. But I really don't like the idea of spending the whole year in Ohio. Heh.

2.7.06, 12:55 PM, EST, Ada, OH, Currently listening to

post 91
written 2006-02-09 20:32:00

It doesn't make any sense to be depressed over a discussion of constitutional law, does it?

I don't think so. But tonight we talked about moral reading of constitutional text and everyone that opened his mouth tonight just bagged on the author/speaker. (There was reading and a video.) The author, Dworkin, posited the idea of a omniscient legal mind that could catalog all prior decisions and the situations that prompted them, and could make the best of all possible findings based therein. As a single voice, the seminar derided him as an elitist, who clearly thought that he was that omniscient legal mind.

For whatever reason, that just makes me sad. I don't think Dworkin was suggesting that he has all the answers. He even said he considers the best thing we have, as a society, to serve that role is good argument. The flow of ideas, the social discourse wherein we can examine and consider our principles and circumstances. Class response: yeah, but he only reads the New York Times.

When did being good at something become something to be ashamed of? When did accomplishment become a reason to attack someone?

I'm going to read Taxation of Transfers and be depressed some more.

2.9.06, 8:32 PM, EST, Ada, OH, the internet can save us

post 92
written 2006-02-12 02:42:00

The Ada $3 theater comes through again. "Glory Road" was good stuff. I recommend it for $3. For $9.50, you might want to wait for something you really want to see.

Other than that, still depressed. Presumably not about constitutional law, but possibly by my doubts about whether I should be in that class. It was a placeholder, at one point. The material is interesting, but I feel like I don't really know what's up with the paper. My outline was horrible. I'm afraid of the professor's response to it.

Sigh. Stupid. Things are relatively good. I don't have much reason to be grumpy. Nevertheless.

2.12.06, 2:42 AM, EST, Ada, OH

post 93
written 2006-02-12 11:03:00

I'm so jealous.

That's my Uncle Rich back in the 215. (sigh)

2.12.06, 11:03 AM, EST, Ada, OH, anywhere I go will have insufficient snow

post 94
written 2006-02-13 23:06:00

I made popcorn with my popcorn maker. I read some of All The King's Men last night. I'm caught up on my reading for my classes. Except for the two infected hangnails, I'm feeling pretty good.

Oh, except Carrie says that I'm the embodiment of global warming, and wherever I go, there will be less snow. It was up in the 40s while I was in PA - I get back to Ohio and the temperatures come up here. Meanwhile, the 215 gets 1-2 feet of snow. Same thing in Milwaukee. This is very disheartening.

Thus, I am now investigating the Alaska State Bar Exam. (Heh. Or not.)

2.13.06, 11:06 PM, EST, Ada, OH, an embarrassment to ninjas everywhere

post 95
written 2006-02-22 19:25:00

I understand some people have been wondering where the webjournal went. It's right here, baby, don't you fret. I've only been gone for --

Oh, nine days. Heh. Sorry about that.

I guess that's kinda long. It's hard to tell sometimes. I mark off time by going to class, studying, going to class, studying, eating, watching Lost and Samurai 7 on Netflix, sleeping, going to class, repeat until exhausted.

So, yeah, sorry about that. Spring break is next week, and I'm going to stay in town. Probably goof off a lot, but I have work to do and a lot of time to get it done in. So, (shrug), send me postcards from cool places I'm not next week. E-mail me for the address. (Which you should already have.)

2.22.06, 7:25 PM, EST, Ada, OH, Spring Break Capital of the Northwestern Ohio Party Circuit. (or not)

post 96
written 2006-02-22 19:29:00

I almost forgot - I'm going to retire the address. I've been waffling on that decision for a couple of years at this point, and I figure I might as well do it. Abruptly, like removing a bandage or administering an injection. Pulling a tooth. Something. (All of my metaphors are medical. How odd.)

I'll be sending out mail to this effect this week, but the new address will be matthew.heslin at Google's mail service, gmail. I'm not writing the address on my journal because the Spam Nation can find you that way. And I don't want to be found. That's why I'm ditching the existing address.

Send me mail there or wait for me to send mail from there, add me to your address book, forward me pictures of the adorable cyclops kitten, whatever.

2.22.06, 7:29 PM, EST, Ada, OH, literally moments after writing the last entry

post 97
written 2006-02-23 12:33:00

Hack hack, cough cough, yarf, owwwww.

Updating my webjournal seems to be hazardous to my health. I have a fever of 101, aches, head cold, and I tossed (minimal) cookies on my way out of the health center.

Yeah, that's right. I went to the health center.

2.23.06, 12:33 PM, EST, Ada, OH, if you're not calling to feel bad for me, don't call.

post 98
written 2006-02-26 18:15:00

Feeling much better, thank you.

Spring break is upon us! Woo. Woo hoo. Yes.

I have nothing planned. You should totally send me ideas for things to do. I'm going to go to the library a lot of reading for the material to finish my first draft. Play some games. Finish up All The King's Men. Eat dinner out a couple of times. Meh. Nothing big.

Oh, and I'll be watching Serenity, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Breakfast at Tiffany's, and Almost Famous. I watched Donnie Darko yesterday.

2.26.06, 6:15 PM, EST, Ada, OH, I should have waited a minute for maximum sixes in that date/time stamp (or four months and one minute)

post 99
written 2006-02-28 12:11:00

I could swear I wrote another journal entry at some point. Man. Where's my brain? Anyway.

It snowed a little yesterday. I predictably got my hopes up, but I think we're past the point in the season where winter makes a big comeback. I could be wrong, but I'd hate to hold out that long just to realize it's late May. Y'know?

Though, the enormous snowfall of my youth was in March or April. Anyone remember that? We all thought winter was done, and then floompf, two feet of snow. (Yes, I used floompf in a sentence. You got a problem with it?) Though I may be seeing the snowfall of my youth through idealized glasses.

Once I was complaining bitterly to my brother about the downgrade in winter quality in recent years, and I told him, "You remember! Snowfall used to be huge! We would make tunnels in just to get around. That's was real precipitation. Accumulation. Y'feel me?" He of course said the obvious thing, which was "Maybe it's not that the snow piled higher back then, but it's that you were shorter." Which makes perfect sense and I will not dignify with a response. I prefer being strident to being wrong.

Sleeping in way too much last two days. Got up at a decent hour today, though. And then went back to sleep.

Read an excellent, nearly scientific article about judicial activism yesterday. Do you know what you could do for me? You could send me an e-mail or give me a call and tell me what you think judicial activism is. I'm looking for personal reactions, not dictionary or textbook definitions. Drop me a line.

2.28.06, 12:11 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 100
written 2006-03-01 11:59:00

Huh. I totally forgot what I was going to write here.

3.1.06, 11:59 AM, EST, Ada, OH

post 101
written 2006-03-05 10:29:00

It ends!

About time too. Let's get back to having a reason to get up in the morning, y'know?

3.5.06, 10:29 AM, EST, Ada, OH

post 102
written 2006-03-10 12:51:00

A week where you get back to work is a week you have to remember how to get back to work.

Got a good amount done - did my turn at the seminar as discussion facilitator (conservative constitutional construction), and got a number of compliments on it. Which is fortunate, because my section was the one featuring the professor's citation - the authors used an article of his.

Need to get more done, though - no class tomorrow or Monday, so I'll probably spend that time reading and drafting parts of my seminar paper.

And I must shop. Food becomes scarce here at Casa Heslin. Perhaps a pleasant afteroon trip to Kenton, where lies a pizza place I haven't tried yet. Or possibly Lima, where comic books are to be found.

Wedding in Milwaukee in a few weeks - have to make sure I finish my paper early, so I can leave town without worrying about finishing too close to the day I leave. The deadline's early enough, so it should be a problem. You could ask me where I'm at on my paper if you call or e-mail me.

On Netflix this week: "The Warriors" and "Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow." Different flavors of bad movie, but a unified theme nonetheless.

Sorry if this was a long time between posts again. Feel free to assume that a lack of new info tends to mean nothing's going on.

3.10.06, 12:51 AM, EST, Ada, OH, somewhere between late night and early morning

post 103
written 2006-03-18 22:50:00

Another week with not much updating. I apologize to those of you for whom checking this journal is a daily (or even more frequent) routine - to be disappointed six out of seven times is tragedy, of which I am the penitent author.

Y'like that? I'm gonna write some badass language in that metier for my paper. I just need to have some more stuff to write about. More research completed this week, most of it very partisan which is both helpful and hindering. More research tomorrow, along with reading for my Estates classes.

Thanks to all the people that I actually spoke to this week. Periodically, I'll get bummed about the limited amount of contact, virtually all of it academic in content and nature, that I have with other human beings. Talking to people - via phone, e-mail, IM - is good for my belief that there's more out there than empty fields and neglected towns, statutes and code sections, food both fast and frozen.

Reorganizing my comics, by company, title, series and issue number. This is a little more scary than it sounds. Y'all know how many comics I have? Yeah.

I should think about food. Or about not food, but sleep, and waking up early and getting some food.

3.18.06, 10:50 PM, EST, Ada, OH

post 104
written 2006-03-20 14:13:00

My schedule for the year has been rather drastically shifted by realism and responsibility.

I had thought I might stay here in Ada and take classes to reduce the total number of credit hours I'll need in my last two terms, Fall '06 and Spring '07. Also, Computer Law is only offered in the summer, so that was an opportunity I was looking forward to taking.

So, this week, I've been figuring out my schedule, and the stupid Pennsylvania state bar examination includes so many topics and areas of potential inquiry that I would be stuck taking too few hours, too many hours, or too extraneous a courseload.

As a result: not staying here for the summer. Or, at least, not unless I find a job here, which I deem unlikely. Where am I going for the summer? Who knows? Let's find work and go where the work is.

Fall '06: Products Liability, Estate Planning, Domestic Relations, Sales and Secured Transactions, and Employment Discrimination Law. Products Liability, Dom Rel, Sales and SecTrans and Employment Discrimination are all on the bar. Estate Planning is something I'm thinking about doing for a living.

Spring '07: Real Estate, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Advanced Legal Research, Criminal Procedure, Trial Advocacy, Federal Courts. Real Estate (specifically mortgage), Criminal Procedure are both bar material. The rest is probably malleable.

3.20.06, 2:13 PM, EST, Ada, OH, isn't Daylight Saving coming up soon?

post 105
written 2006-03-27 07:38:00

I'm not dead.

This is in lieu of an e-mail to the various Milwaukee folks who graciously and hospitably welcomed me into the familiar warmth and camraderie that is the old tradition. Wedding was lovely ("all they were missing was the Burmese fire-walking" according to one observer), good to see everyone, thanks to everyone who took part in my once-or-twice a year visit to the Cream City, and in my once-or-twice a year Jameson tolerance check (there may be a correlation between those two events. studies are ongoing).

Milwaukee has bookstores, neighborhoods, bars with very reasonable prices, culture, a Great Lake (two, really, but I don't get to the other one much), good food, good people, and is an excellent break from all the Ada in my life. Danke, danke, ein hunnert danke, y'all.

I did not get blindsided by a hangover in Gary, Indiana, thank God.

I did consider pulling over to a truck stop and asking someone to punch me in the gut so I could get it over with. (I went to Arby's for lunch instead.)

I went swimming. There was a shadowy woman smoking a cigarette at poolside when I did. I cannot explain this.

Good weekend, all in all. Congratulations to the happy couple.

3.27.06, 7:38 AM, EST, Ada (sigh), OH

post 106
written 2006-03-27 18:45:00

My webjournal, according to Keith, is 90% bitching about the lack of snow.

It's spring now. What am I going to post!?

3.27.06, 6:45 PM, EST, Ada, OH, terror closing in

post 107
written 2006-03-28 11:41:00

The wind doth taste of bittersweet

Like jasper wine and sugar

I bet it's blown through other's feet

like those of Caspar Weinburger

-Berkeley Breathed

3.28.06, 11:41 AM, EST, Ada, OH

post 108
written 2006-03-29 13:01:00

I forgot the before and after shots. Behold:

late March, sometime midday, Eastern Time Zone, Ada, OH

post 109
written 2006-03-31 07:43:00

I still haven't seen V For Vendetta, and if my work schedule is anything to judge by, I won't for a while.

"What is called 'American Democracy' is really remarkable for its non-democracy, that is, its protection of minorities, dissenters, incompetents, and social outcasts." - Richard Neely

David Cross is funny. Paul Anka covering pop rock is funny. Thanks to Keith for both.

3.31.06, 7:43 AM, EST, Ada, OH

post 110
written 2006-04-02 23:07:00

Television is the devil.

4.2.06, 11:07 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

post 111
written 2006-04-04 12:55:00

So... much... writing...

Can't... leave... library... for another three days!

4.4.06, 12:55 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, weird how the daylight saving gets you

post 112
written 2006-04-04 18:39:00

Even if I don't have time for maxing and relaxing, you should:

Cat and Girl and Our National Pastime.

One Red Paperclip can be redeemed for a moving van, and possibly more.

Just a little diversion for you. I have to eat and run, to write more.

4.4.06, 6:39 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

post 113
written 2006-04-06 01:23:00

Whoooof. 27 pages, probably one or two more tomorrow - polishing, y'know. It'll probably be even longer in final draft.

But essentially done. TGI.

4.6.06, 1:23 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, you get chased out of the library at 1 AM most nights

post 114
written 2006-04-08 15:38:00

Will it be possible to obtain and operate the classic cars of the late 20th century when I am old enough and rich enough to afford one?

I had some shopping to do today, so I went on down to Pa Walton's Community Store, picked me up some vittles. (Am I to understand that "vittles" and "victuals" are pronounced the same way? Ah, the English language. Ditto "chitterlings.") Parking was bad, which I assumed was because A) it's a weekend, and B) it's Wal-Mart. Good guesses, but both wrong: some kind of minor car show was taking up a chunk of parking lot.

Car show is a weird term for it. There were 1950s Fords and Chevies, some older antique models - the kind of thing you expect to see at such an event. But, then, parked alongside, were 1980s and 1970s Chevy Cavaliers and Ford trucks. I may have assumed they were just people's rides to the car show, but there were folks Armor Alling the tires and rubbing the paint finish with diapers. (Not really. Ferris Bueller reference.)

I mean, you have an old Thunderbird or classic Oldsmobile or something - right on, man, show that thing off. I'll even give you room for those Camaros and Chevelles, cars I think of as 1970s, but may be wrong about - it's been long enough, I'll grant you those have some historical or sentimental significance. But those other ones? Come on. I know you want to be included in the classic car class distinction, but I'm sorry - get a classic car first.

(Watch me get hate e-mail about this - "The Cavalier is a classic! You shut up!" I may even deserve it. I don't know jack about cars.)

But those '50s cars were pretty.

4.8.06, 3:38 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, where classic might just mean old

post 115
written 2006-04-13 19:19:00

A man in California won a $10 million lottery prize. He received the prize in 20 annual installments of $508,000. After three years, he died. His estate was found to have an interest in the remaining payments creating a penalty of almost $1,500,000 in estate tax, despite the fact that the seventeen payments had not yet been received. (The estate was able to successfully argue that the interest was less, because it could not be marketed commerically by California lottery rules. An inalienable asset is worth less than a commerically dealable one.)

Oldest mother on record: age 61.

Youngest mother on record: age 5.

4.13.06, 7:19 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, textbooks aplenty

post 116
written 2006-04-13 19:20:00

It is a misdemeanor in Tennessee to transport skunks into the state, or to use skunks in any kind of transaction.

4.13.06, 7:20 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, facts and oddities

post 117
written 2006-04-13 19:24:00

I'll be away all weekend, celebrating the imminent doom of my good friend Charles. Charles David, perhaps you know him? He and his lovely honey will be married in a matter of days, so he has to get a prerequisite amount of glitter and fragrance on him. You know.

So, below, we have a few fascinating facts, gleaned from my studies. Please enjoy.

4.13.06, 7:24 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, hell yes

post 118
written 2006-04-17 20:51:00

Back from PA. Back from ten-twelve hour drives. Back from designated driving.

Back to outlines, studying and exams. Back to final papers, memos and deadlines. Back to a class that was rescheduled from Thursday to tomorrow. (This was announced on Friday, via in-school e-mail. I just found out.)

I'll be back.

4.17.06, 8:51 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, backcountry

post 119
written 2006-04-18 17:15:00

Whew. That's better.

Got a to-do list for the last two weeks of school. Nice to have a checklist, nice to check things off.

Great time back home this weekend, just great. Hate to have such a short time in PA, since it inevitably means spending insufficient amounts of time with everyone.

Good time at the gig - congratulations, Chuck. Good job running that show, Marty. And thanks for keeping me company, Christian. If anyone hasn't heard the Christopher Moore story by now, e-mail me and I'll repeat it for the Nth time. I love that story. It doesn't even involve dog-fighting, heroin or slave auctions.

Cait, you'll want to pick some time when I get home in May to collect on your birthday present.

I'm sorry to everyone I didn't see enough of - though, really, that would be everyone, since I'd rather go home for a week or a month and spend all the time in the world hanging out. But no. Exams call. I'll see more of everyone this summer, work and salary permitting.

Got a "very nice" on my seminar paper presentation today. About that - the presentations were scheduled for class on Thursday, 6pm. However, that class was rescheduled for Wednesday at 6pm because the professor is attending a conference. However, Wednesday at 6pm conflicted with a school dinner or something, so the class was rescheduled again to Tuesday (today) at 11 am.

Yeah. That was announced on Friday, I found out last night because a classmate called me to let me know. Had to read a pack of other people's papers because responses and written questions are part of your class participation grade. Got it done, did it well (apparently). Also got good feedback on my paper and areas I can expand my page length on.

Now, pasta.

4.18.06, 5:15 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, lovely spring day

post 120
written 2006-04-21 16:42:00

Please append all communications to me in the next week with the phrase, "Finish those papers?" or "Finish all your outlines?"


4.21.06, 4:42 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, crunch time

post 121
written 2006-04-22 23:56:00

"A trustee is held to something stricter than the morals of the marketplace. Not honesty alone, but the punctilio of an honor the most sensitive, is then the standard of behavior." --Cardozo, J.

4.22.06, 11:56 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

post 122
written 2006-04-25 23:08:00

Man, this week is killing me.

So, it's been all hot and summery - well, probably more spring-y. But still. And then today, rain all day. It's just above freezing outside right now. And tomorrow it's supposed to be 72 and thunderstormy.


Oh, I think there should be more pages like this: Gas prices by county.

Working, working. Plenty of self-loathing too. Grrrr.

4.25.06, 11:08 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

post 123
written 2006-04-28 01:11:00

I spit defiance in the eye of Civil Practice! Take your summary judgment motion and fold it up until it's all corners, and then shove it someone in accordance with Ohio Rule of Civil Procedure 11(b)! Jerks!

(That all means "one paper done." I hope it's good. I've been looking at it too long and too hatefully to really make any kind of effective value statement about it.)


4.28.06, 1:11 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, the mean streets are deserted this time of night

post 124
written 2006-04-28 01:13:00

Dear Webjournal Reader,

HESLIN.ORG thinks you might enjoy listening to James Kochalka, Superstar, and his #1 summer jam, "Hockey Monkey." So turn on your speakers or hook up your headphones and click on this link:

And it's one, two, three..."

4.28.06, 1:13 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, one more day of classes

post 125
written 2006-05-01 01:14:00

Good weekend. Finished the second paper. Walked home in the rain.

One exam this week, which should not lull you into thinking that I have an easy week ahead. This week will be followed by a week with three exams over four days. So, studying and more studying on the menu.

Let's find out if this is allergies, a cold, or a sinus infection.

5.1.06, 1:14 AM, EDT, Ada, OH

post 126
written 2006-05-01 20:27:00

A disclaimer treats a testamentary gift as though it was never received. Exceptions: IRS, Medicaid.

The Uniform Simultaneous Death Act treats persons who die at relatively close times with no substantive evidence of one predeceasing the other as if each had predeceased the other (for purposes of testamentary bequests and devises). Thus, neither estate has to deal with gifts from a dead person to a dead person.

And, inexplicably, GMail thinks I might enjoy this. The future is a weird place, sometimes.

5.1.06, 8:27 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, Happy International Workers' Day

post 127
written 2006-05-02 20:51:00

If you ask a Supreme Court Justice if a couple has a right to privacy in an intimate situation, he or she will most likely reply, "Of course."

Ask that same Supreme Court Justice if a homosexual couple has a right to privacy in an intimate situation, and he or she will probably ask which state you're talking about.

Justices are more willing to restrict the rights of Americans if they know more specifically which Americans they're talking about. For example, "parents" have more rights than "adulterous, non-custodial fathers." It's true.

Rain today, rain yesterday, bought an umbrella. Had some greasy chicken for lunch, made pasta and meatballs for dinner.

I may or may not eat my last Klondike Oreo bar for dessert.

5.2.06, 8:51 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

post 128
written 2006-05-04 22:07:00

Ahhhhh. One down, three to go. Today was Estates, Wills and Trusts, and was pretty comprehensive in those areas. The professor's essays didn't seem terribly exacting (which likely means he isn't interested in reading 165 essays where slavering law students strive to demonstrate just how much they know about virtually everything), I had time to outline and review, and feel pretty good about it.

Though, they say if you walk out of an exam certain you did well or poorly, you've probably done the exact opposite.


Legal Profession in three days. Reading up on the Model Rules.

5.4.06, 10:07 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

post 129
written 2006-05-08 20:01:00

Two down, two to go.

Also, finished my last outline today. Thanks for all your supportive questions regarding my status on that front. Will be reading tonight, tomorrow, and the following night for exams Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning.

So, there's this custom here at the school - I don't know if this is common to all law schools, but here it's the thing to do - the person who gets the highest grade in each course in a given semester receives what they call "the book award." Much like dean's list or graduating cum laude, it's recognition for its own sake - it doesn't mean anything or hold any significance once it's been awarded. (Except, y'know, you put it on resumes and applications and stuff.)

Inexplicably, I've received a book award for my work in my Constitutional Law seminar. My paper on judicial activism was returned today, with revisions apparently very well received by the professor. I'm rather incredulous, since there were very good papers written by very good people in my class. People on law review, people with phat jobs already lined up for summer 2007, smart smart folks.

And somehow, I'm the top dog in that class. Note, for amusement's sake, that this is the same class I signed up for as a placeholder - I had planned on dropping it as soon as I found a better 2 hours of credit.

Inexplicable, I say, or incroyable as we might say in Montreal. (Not in France, though. In France we'd just sneer.)

I should get back to studying.

5.8.06, 8:01 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

post 130
written 2006-05-11 11:29:00


Sorry for the lack of update yesterday - trying to jam as much studying in as possible.

Con Law - tough exam. Professor dropped between seven and seventeen possible constitutional problems into a narrative that was about as logical as the average David Foster Wallace plot, with the final instructions reading something like, "There ya go, go get'em." I hope I tagged enough bases, but the sheer number of bases makes it hard to tell.

Taxation of Transfers - tough exam in a tough format. Most of my exams in the last two years have been essays, or short essays, or short answers that are mostly distilled essays. This one was multiple choice, and a survey section that asked basic questions about nine thousand possible scenarios in the gift and estate tax codes. I feel like I should go back to bed even though I've only been up for four hours, that's the kind of exam it was.

Thanks for all the kind words about my book award. I have to chalk it up to ineffective grading on the part of the professor (unless you want to interview me - then I earned that grade, dammit). My friend in the class also got an A, so I don't feel bad about messing with the curve or taking a grade away from anyone.

Carrie! Mikey! Thanks for the goodies. It arrived promptly after my last exam. I'll open it now.

I really might go to bed.

5.11.06, 11:29 AM, EDT, Ada, OH

post 131
written 2006-05-16 13:29:00

Okay, that was a couple of days not worth reporting on.

I goofed off for a few days, relaxed, laughed maniacally at people because I didn't have any more exams. Then, since then, I've been cleaning, doing laundry, clearing out my stuff from the library, and inexplicably staying up way too late. Not on purpose, just because. I considered writing a journal entry earlier, but I didn't want anyone to get the impression that I was getting up at 5:30 AM of my own volition, rather I was still up at that hour.

I got a list, I got some last stuff to clean and tidy, and then ideally I'll be on the road tomorrow. No promises, though, since I'm insomniac and I don't know exactly how long this list will take to finish.

Also, I'll be infrequent about the journal entries once I get back to PA. I'm bringing both my laptop and my desktop (don't laugh, my old desktop melted in the sweltering Ohio summer last year) but I don't know if I'll have desktop access. I may have to figure out how to post entries from my Mac. That's probably a good idea regardless.

See, I told you it wasn't worth reporting on.

5.16.06, 1:29 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, Cleaning Country

post 132
written 2006-06-04 13:33:00

Webjournal on remote

I can't guarantee what the look of this thing will be, because the Mac is both doing some of my thinking for me and waiting for me to figure out some of the thinking on my own.

Also, it's saving text in HTML format without all the tags I usually use (old-fashioned HTML I guess, since you can just tell most any program these days to format things in a web-friendly way, and it'll do it for you), so I hope this is legible and doesn't look like a spastic monkey wrote it.

Oops, too late.

More soon.

6.4.06, 13:33 EST, Warrington, PA

post 133
written 2006-06-04 13:56:00

Okay, this just looks weird.

I'm switching to Word for my text editor, since the Mac seems determined to do my HTMLing for me. But as I type it, that's how it's going to look.

And I'm not sure how to change my header or whatever it is. I'll work on that.

Things are good. Starting a two-week engagement tomorrow, so that's good. Work, money, something to do, etc. If it doesn't rain today, I'm going to a little league game. I didn't get my oil changed (Sunday must be a big day for mechanics to take off) and there was no Heroclix game today because Wizard World Philly is in town. I ate a good number of doughnuts this weekend, and delivered yet more. I worked on logic and consistency with Josh, but didn't get very far. (He's going to be two in September, so there's plenty of room for improvement.)

My car sounds a little funny. I'll see what it sounds like after an oil change.

That's it. We're back up in the intar-nets and all's right with the world. Or something. Bagel places with free wireless internet remain one of my favorite places to be.

6.4.06, 13:56 EST, Warrington, PA, they close at 2pm and 3pm every day though

post 134
written 2006-06-16 17:45:00

"You scored as XVI: The Tower. If badly aspected this can be the worst card of the Tarot deck. The Tower always indicates upheavel, possibly chaos, loss and destruction. Its effects are never pleasant and can be painful. The card illustrates lightning striking the Tower. The lightning cannot be avoided, the destruction it brings is inevitable. All we can do is attempt to survive and rebuild. The Tower brings sudden, severe change. When the Tower appears in a Tarot spread it represents sudden and possibly violent change, disruption or loss."


Which Major Arcana Tarot Card Are You?

created with -

Stupid Mac. Sure, it's less work to just type stuff, but at least when I had to do all the coding, I knew exactly why every bit looked the way it did. This way, I have no idea if/how/why/what things are going to turn out like, or on which platform or whatever...


So, busy week. Monday, I hurt my back. Didn't notice it at the time, to give you an idea of how bad it must have been. Finished working that day, went home, laid around complaining about the ache in my back. Then, Tuesday morning, I woke up and discovered I couldn't stand. Y'ever have that? Man, that sucked. Wednesday, still lots of pain. Resorted to aspirin, which I rarely do. Thursday, I figured I had to try and get up and try to live, so I went to work and did a little lifting -- which ended up being exactly what I needed. Felt great by Thursday night, and feel almost back to normal now -- Friday afternoon.

Mom was in town for a few days, which I totally sympathize with her about -- having nine thousand things you want to / have to do in three days is not a good time, regardless of how many of those things you get done. Seriously, that's why I hate coming home from Ohio for too short a time. Sure, it's nice to get home for any length of time, but when you can't tag all the bases, it gets to you.

I have the remains of a dozen Dunkin Donuts here at the Starbucks (later hours than the bagel place) and I keep meaning to give them out to people as a generous gesture, but I keep forgetting I hate these people.

But I am these people at the moment, aren't I?

--Dangerdoom, "Old School," The Mouse and the Mask

17:45 EST, 6.16.06, Warrington, PA

post 135
written 2006-06-19 17:30:00

Got another job, temp agency came through about a day after I met the usual bureaucratic demands of the foolish government pencil pushers and bean-counters. (I really just wanted to use the expression "bean counters" there. It's factually accurate, though.)

My back still hurts. My recovery via work seemed so direct and miraculous that I figured my pain was at an end, yea, even unto the seventh day post-injury. But no -- so I find myself doing little back exercises and resorting to ice and heat at times.

I fear that Starbucks may be replacing the bagel place as my wi-fi hookup. This is fearsome because Starbucks has a limited supply of anything I want and plays host to a myriad of upper-middle class (middle-upper class?) children spending daddy's money and on-the-go successful businessmen and --women who are really too important for you, you know.

Cursed Starbucks. If only I wanted coffee more frequently, I might be able to forgive them.

Ooh, I got a haircut, to go with the new job. No webcam right now, though, so you don't get to see it. Ha! Suckers! Come see me some time and I'll model the new sartorial splendor. (Don't let the vocab fool you -- it's a Hair Cuttery job.)

--Poe, "Terrible Thought," Haunted

6.19.06, 17:30 PM, which is redundant, but that's what my clock says, so that's what you get, Warrington, PA

post 136
written 2006-06-19 17:32:00

Sorry about the coding issues.

6.19.06, 17:32 PM, Warrington, PA

post 137
written 2006-06-26 17:18:00

Temping is good stuff. Or at least weird jobs with minimal demands and stress combined with good pay = good stuff. Sure, it's not forever, but it's for right now, and it's doing what I need doing at this time.

(Non-geeks may want to skip the following paragraph.)

The summer Vampire game started. Y.T. is storytelling. I've set the scene in lovely summertime Milwaukee, and am peopling the game with actual Milwaukeeans. (Attention: Milwaukeeans: do not ask to be cast in this game unless you want to risk sympathetic / voodoo peril when your character analog suffers a grisly death in Lake Park. Oh, and could someone at the Landmark please check and see if that guy with the "Vietnam Vet - Please Help" sign who haunts Farwell and North is still alive. Thanks.) My group is the city's problem solver ("Sheriff"), her assistant ("Hound"), a consultant (a werewolf), and someone almost completely unrelated to the first three (an ancient pagan DJ - no, I'm not making this up). Problems arise immediately, and our heroes have to go be heroic. Except, y'know, they're all foul bloodsuckers or failed drunks. It should be fun.

Trying another text editor now, we'll see if the random numbers show up again on the top.

Oh, holy crap, Barry actually called me! For real. Unless it was a cleverly programmed voiceboard. I think it was him, though. I know some of you were worried - so, good news, he appears to be still alive and still clinging to the face of the earth. He claims to have been on a date when I called him this week, which I totally buy. We all know how good-looking that kid is. Still waiting to hear an interactive Barry voice in the near future.

Lot of rain here, but at least there's no tornado. Try to stay in one piece, Ada.

They Might Be Giants "She's Actual Size (live)," Dial-a-Song: 20 Years of TMBG

17:18 PM, 6/26/06, EST, Newtown, PA

post 138
written 2006-06-30 17:25:00

Long weekend. Didn't expect it since no one warned me it was coming until 3 PM on Friday afternoon - "go ahead and take Monday and Tuesday off." Oh, cool! Now I only get paid for three days of work instead of five, and you let me know after I have a chance to make any cool plans to go and do stuff. (Well, sort of. I could have gone to Gettysburg, which I keep meaning to do and keep not having time. Didn't happen, though.)

Saw Kristy and her sweetie, Terry, in the city. We did some driving around, some hanging out, and some failed negotiations with an ESL locksmith regarding her bike lock. It was a long and arduous day for K-Bar, who had to lead off with minding small children of the landed classes, then Locky McLocksmith and his self-advantaging billing system. The dear thing practically passed out at various points in the evening, which allowed me to stealthily purchase dinner for her and her beau. Good food and an only slightly scary urban habitat. I am, and remain, Country Mouse (there's no such thing as Suburban Mouse, so you shut the hell up). Terry seems like a cool cat. Kristy tried to apologize for a perceived lack of sociability on his behalf, which amused me to no end -- "I'm really sorry, Josef Stalin, but he's not usually this genocide-y." Honestly, I practically view that as a positive character trait. But that's just me.

Three day work week? Man. What am I going to do with that?

Poker tonight if I feel like it. I didn't enjoy last month's game, and whoever's running it this week only informed Bren about it yesterday, so who knows...?

"My strength is ten-fold, girl."

--Newtown, PA, 17:25 PM, EST, Within reach but outside your comprehension

post 139
written 2006-07-06 21:42:00

I can't tell how old anyone is.

I was just sneering at some teenyboppers here at the (accursed) 611 Starbucks, and I'm fairly certain they picked up their children and walked out to their SUVs. So, presumably, they were not teenagers. (Presumably. You never know.)

My failures to accurately gauge the ages of those younger than I have been chronicled elsewhere and need not be repeated in this forum.

So, clearly, I have no skillz with age approximation. None to speak of. None whatsoever.

Does that matter? It probably doesn't.

My dad is being treated for pneumonia at St. Mary's. He should get better soon, but preferably after sufficient rest and recovery. This is not a forecast, but rather orders of a sort - either to him or to the pneumonia, I guess. So, hop to it.

7.6.06, 21:42 PM, EST, Warrington, PA

post 140
written 2006-07-10 21:42:00

My dad (or the pneumonia) followed orders adroitly and smartly, and he is now out of the hospital. Good job, now stay out of there.

Look at these:

I like that look he's got in the one picture. It's a look that says, "Yeah, I'm a high school science teacher. That doesn't mean I can't be... badass."


Murder, mayhem, and mass confusion in this weekend's Vampire game. Honestly too much to go into any detail. We all learned valuable lessons about monsters and being monstrous, and the aggravated damage systems of the new WoD.

I hope this works without more stupid HTML tags appearing. I'm probably hoping in vain.

--NYC and Baltimore are on the tour list

17:33 PM, EST, Warrington, PA, Jones Soda adheres to your flesh in the proper circumstances... though I guess that's true of many substances

Awoken from a nightmare into a new day of HTML freedom
written 2006-07-14 08:39:28

Again, Mikey is my online savior.

I have a theory that if you remain stupid long enough in Mikey's presence, he feels an overwhelming need to lift you from your state, to help you bootstrap yourself to a better place. And, since Mikey exists almost 47% on the internet now, his telepresence is vast and awesome.

New format courtesy Ryan Gordon, (C), 2006, all rights reserved, stick it in the camel and go.

Anyone want to see a minor league baseball game on Monday? Free pint glasses to the first 1500 fans.

8:39 AM, EST, 7/14/06, Newtown, PA, Bastille Day

A week full of fullness.
written 2006-07-21 17:31:17

Had some days pass between updates, for which I apologize. One should never have so much life that one cannot adequately journal the events experienced. I think Jefferson said that. Conceited jerk. Like anyone cares what he wrote, right? Right?

ITEM! Minor league baseball is awesome. Anyone living within 30 minutes' drive of a minor league ballclub owes it to themselves to go out and catch a game. I went on Monday to the Trenton Thunder's Riverfront Park, where I received a pint glass, a bingo ticket, nine innings of mismatched baseball (Sorry, Binghamton, but your side of the scorecard read like a stuttering child trying to pronounce the word "kick" while getting beaten up by a Yankees farm team. Okay, I lost the thread of that simile midway, but I'm sure at least two people understood that.) (Perhaps "sure" is too strong.) Anyway, there was a dog who was a batboy, they gave away XBoxes, hundreds of dollars, prizes, free food, human hamster ball races, pipe bands, Irish dance school recitals -- it was like a crazy festival or block party, except the Thunder do this three or five times a week. It was a hoot. You should go.

ITEM! My car sputtered and died on Tuesday. I had a brief mental breakdown - my car doesn't die! It is immortal! - but got a ride to and from the car to continue working and then replace the battery, which appears to have addressed my issue. Many thanks to Bren, who presciently suggested it was a battery issue, then carted me around so I could correct the problem. The car is running fine now. (knocking on wood)

ITEM! Big ass violent storm on Tuesday. Power outages, property damage, lots of work for my landscaper boss.

ITEM! I'm going up to NYC tomorrow with Kristy and Terry, to see the Gerlach and her boy, Ivan. Word is Ray and his girl will be in attendance as well. A source who spoke on condition of anonymity suggests this could be off tha hook; the hook could not be reached for comment.

I think that's about it for items. My misappropriated internet connection at Starbucks is refusing to cooperate, which may indicate that T-Mobile is onto Mikey's communist plan to provide the Internet to the masses, or that Mikey's using the Internet right now, so no one else can. We'll see.

"In the spaceship, the silver spaceship, the lion takes control."

--17:09 PM, EST, Warrington, PA, Or at least it was when I wrote this

Train in the rain, run when you're dry
written 2006-07-28 16:51:48

Hey now.

Had so much fun this week it took this long to get near the journal again. Saturday, stopped down in Philly to pick up my two hot dates, then drove up the (nightmare hellroad of utter despair) NJ Turnpike to Jersey City, Jess and Ivan's urban environment of choice. There we feasted on Cuban food, took the PATH train to Manhattan, and enjoyed the hospitality at Movida, a club run by a friend of theirs. Loud, loud music which was frequently 1980s-ish, a ton of people, and a VIP section.

Didn't drink too much, but did manage to pay $9 for a Bushmills. Some guys in suits showed up and drank Jess and Ivan's vodka while Cat and I tried to figure out who they were. A person asked me if I was Heslin, and told me he had heard tales of my exploits. That's a little gratifying, that my rep precedes me in NYC. A beautiful girl fell into my arms - I know she was drunk and couldn't stand in those shoes, but shut up and let me enjoy my moment.

Good times. Got Kristy back to Philadelphia in time for work. I got back in time for a barbecue at my dad's. Oh, and sleep. Since we got back to Jess's in Jersey City at 4:30am, and left for Philly at 7:30am or something. Heh.

Tomorrow, hitting the Orioles-White Sox game, which should be a race to see who can lose first. I back the Orioles, as always. With any luck, I'll have my very own O's jersey by tomorrow as well.

Oh, and humans in the Newtown area who appreciate Goodnoe's - it is closing on Labor Day. I will be arranging dinner somewhere in Newtown prior to this with dessert at Goodnoe's, probably during the week of the 13th of August. You want in? Let me know.

Oh, and gig at my place on the 5th. Y'all should all come.

--"time, time, time, time." Warrington, PA, 16:51 PM, EST

Willow limbed and ragged headed
written 2006-08-07 17:39:52

Gig on Saturday, it was well-attended and had a special guest star, featured the Trademark Heslin Party Snack, games of SoulBlade (not SoulCalibur, mind you), and at least one marauding two-year-old. God bless Michelle for reining that kid in. I shudder to think of the state of my brother's kitchen absent the kindly Mrs. Wendig. Danke schon, schones madchen.

Sampled the soon-to-be-legendary vintages of Wycombe Vinyards on Sunday. I totally recommend them. If you find yourself in the Wycombe area and have a hankering for the grape, stop by and say hi. Dropping my name will get you absolutely nowhere, but it could be worth a shot.

My mom was here! Briefly! And I got to see her! Yay!

Time is short. The hanged man bears no malice. Fear death by water.

17:40 PM, EST, Warrington, PA

Like looking for a marker in a drawer full of poisonous coral snakes
written 2006-08-15 13:04:26


I'm either on some kind of bipolar upswing or things are just coming up roses lately. Sunsets, blue skies, good times, all sorts of the variety of experience that makes having a blog feel like less of an awkward self-publicization exercise.

(No sooner have I written this sentence than two loud, obnoxious children sit down in the bagel place next to me. Never announce your contentment to the universe, because the universe feels like it has a job to do. Don't become a statistic! Keep your bliss on the down-low.)

Since last time, and please forgive me if I jump around in the chronology any here, since I posted an update to the journal at the same time that my internet connection gave out, so I don't remember what I posted and what I didn't. Yes, I could go check, but it's as much a mental exercise to recall what you did and what you posted as it is just reading. I'm sorry. This is probably too much detail. See above, awkward self-publicization exercise.

Yeah, since last time: dinner at a cool tavern in Bristol somewhere in lower Bucks, Puss and Boots. Dinner at Goodnoe's, which is closing, and has inexplicable high prices, so if you go, have dinner first and just get ice cream (many thanks to Jen for getting my dinner and Bren for getting my ice cream). Quote from Caitlin: "Do you have to hit on every counter girl?" Personal to Cait: Trust me, I haven't hit on any counter girl in your presence. What you're seeing is just complimentary flirting. The actual hitting-on is far more technically complex.

Most notably, I spent the weekend in sunny Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Flew out on Friday, went swimming - pool and ocean - had late night dinner on the Lauderdale version of Rodeo Drive or Park Avenue or something, looked at comic books, had a massage, saw where the loggerhead turtles nest, had room service breakfast, paid a forfeit (I lost a bet a while back), and generally got a serious workout. Personal to Susan: my abs still hurt.

I honestly can't remember the last time I swam in the ocean. It was great. Susan reminded me that south Florida is technically in the Caribbean, so it naturally has that blue ocean - fine sands thing going on. (Anyone wishing to debate this point is welcome to address their postcards to the South Florida Business Journal, c/o S.J. Stabley in the Crusading Journalist Department.) I had a brick of time where I never even saw the ocean, and I didn't like it very much. I highly recommend everyone see the ocean sometime. Mmmmm. Ocean.

And so two days remain before "Ohio 3: The Return To BFE." Coming soon to theaters in your area, assuming your area is Ada, OH. Have to run some errands and such in the time remaining to me. Also, have to have a meeting of the Triat to determine the position of the cosmic power balance for the remainder of this aeon.

-- [insert sound of fingers snapping]"The Aristocrats!" 12:42 PM, EST, Warrington, PA

Attention Queens people, or people who dig the written word
written 2006-08-18 12:12:06

You may have already seen this, but:

Charlotte Observer article on Wendy Waite's collected works.

Wendy Waite wrote the best modern form poem I've ever read - I think it was a sonnet, about hitting puberty, and taking snarky comments from bullies with a brave face. I heard that, read aloud, and immediately wondered why Wendy wasn't the Queens College poet laureate.

A $25 donation to the Wendy Waite Scholarship Fund should get you a copy of the book, being self-published by her husband. I'm getting one.

12:12 PM, EST, Ada, OH, "I'm BACK... I'm back in the saddle again"

It's called a geographical cure... but it's really not a cure at all
written 2006-08-18 12:23:53

Be advised - my GPS now reads as northwestern Ohio. Please do not go over to my brother's house to visit, unless you want to visit him. Or drink the beer I left in the fridge. You'll have to clear that with Bren and Pina.

The main reason I came back early ended up being unnecessary: you have to sign a form to get your check on time, or you used to. This year, it's "all computerized." I fear that statement. If I don't get my check on time, that's fine, as I brought back a chunk of change from work this summer. But I tremble at the thought of the bureaucracy weilding the ironclad excuse of "It's the computers" while not knowing how to operate said computers. Then we get the opening from "The Terminator."

That's how it happens.

US Bank screwed me. Again. I don't know how it's possible, unless they charge me an annual fee for having a checking account there. I deposited my big summer check into my US Bank account, and ended up with less money. I'm flabbergasted. I'll do some checking to make sure it's not just my stupid fault, and then probably change banks. Jerks.

(Amusing sidenote: read journal entries from exactly a year ago and hear the echo! Both with the bank's evil and my intent to do something about it. Note that I'm still with US Bank. [sigh])

Twelve hour trip back. Two traffic jams, two gas stops, one lunch and one stop just to not be driving for a little bit. I've done better, that's for sure. All in all, not a bad trip though.

Oh, if you know what RSS is, you can use RSS to get updates when I update the journal. That's one of the new things Mikey built into the journal when he modernized it.

Great to see everyone this week, and this month, and this summer. Sorry if I missed anyone. Kristy, remember you owe me dinner. Jess, e-mail me so I know you're not dead. Jefe, you have to make it to the next party so I can get rid of all that beer.

Don't buy the Da Vinci Code. Library, or borrow it from someone who bought it. Learn from my example.

--12:23 PM, EST, Ada, OH, nothing can live without its head

written 2006-08-20 10:37:50

Cost of accidentally clicking "US Bank" instead of "Commerce Bank" on my Visa e-bill: somewhere in the $70-$100 range. This does not include the cost of the paid bill, which was also about $100. There are separate fees for making a charge that's not supported by existing funds, and for overdrafting your account. Then there are fees for each day you remain in the red. Sad postscript: this is all my fault, for accidentally clicking "US Bank" when I paid my Visa.

Cost of books for four of my five classes: $450, roughly. I still have one more class to buy for, but I didn't want to carry that many books at once. And I managed to sign up for another course that assigned a huge, phone book sized statute book that we'll use once in a while, then will be obsolete by the time the course is offered again.

Cost of a movie in Ada: still $3. That's nice. Talladega Nights was not nearly as good as Anchorman, but that might be an unfair comparison.

I'd love to have something in here like, "Cost of a night in Tijuana with a chimpanzee, a magician and that single 40-something from Accounts Receivable: priceless." I can't figure it out, though. Let me know if you have the answer.

--10:37 AM, EST, Ada, OH

Square and parallelogram equals American-Made!
written 2006-08-21 13:32:00

Man, Commerical Law and Products Liability are scary. And that only after one class each. In Commercial, the professor is at least going to warn us a day before we're in the hot seat. In Products Liability, Prof. Young just jumped right into it - theory, ideas, market concepts, how the great judges of the twentieth century were all wrong - that's heady stuff for the first day back, first class of the semester.

Can't wait for tomorrow, where I have three classes instead of two. They start later, though. M-W-F is my morning classes, and T-R is noon to afternoon. But no night classes, got those out of the way last semester. Maybe next semester - there's usually a Real Estate class at night, 7 PM to 9:45 PM or something.

Wednesday will be weird - Commercial Law at 9 AM, then... um... nothing. Until Thursday. That's weird.

Hope everyone's doing well. Send me e-mail. I'm adjusting poorly to not being in the 215, with its cavalcade of friends and family and such.

I'm going to go check out the Rite Aid. You may recall that the Rite Aid took over the spot where the Hardee's was, and this was a source of great misery to me. We'll see if I can overcome this emotional hardship.

--13:27 PM, EST, Ada, OH, "hot, nasty, bad-ass speed."

Objectivity went out the window, along with a few objects
written 2006-08-22 15:59:43

Arbitration - looks very interesting. My professor is a tiny Russian woman, who advised us to sit close to the front of the room due to her soft voice and noticeable accent. Already hitting some of the conceptual stuff, so that's good stuff. A little deep, sure. Mention has been made of the ancient practice of village elders hearing disputes.

Estate Planning - Prof. Martin again, who taught my Estates, Wills and Trusts class and my Estate and Gift Tax class. He's hitting us with lots of very practical experience stuff. We'll have to submit a draft of a document usable in practice almost every week, so I imagine we'll have a pretty useful book of material by the end of the year.

Domestic Relations - Prof. Clarke opened with, "This class might as well be called divorce law." That's a good note to open on. She's alternately jovial and hard-assed, as I recall. She may have been responsible for a kid in my first-year class dropping out. Today it was all jokes and such, but I'm sure that'll wobble.

Already have assignments, but no food in the house. (Exception: the haystacks Bren made. I'm making those things last. Mmmm.) Tomorrow I have a huge gap in my schedule, so I'm going grocery shopping midday. Homework tonight and tomorrow night.

If I lied about everything, would this be more interesting reading?

--15:59 PM, EST, Ada, OH

Tycho Brahe, thou art avenged
written 2006-08-24 11:06:26

My four generations-long crusade to annihilate the planet Pluto has, at long last, succeeded.

My agents have subverted enough of the Astronomers Union to have the "planet" declared a nonentity. No longer a planet, and soon enough out of the public mind altogether.

Then, when all Terran attention is diverted from it, I shall lead a team of interplanetary engineers to install a mass driver engine in Pluto's mantle, using its own substance to power a stream of mass and converted kinetic energy to hurl Pluto out of its orbit, toward the center of the solar system.

Only when a tiny solar flare erupts from the surface of Sol, Earth's Sun, will the people of Earth recognize that their fellow traveler, Pluto, is no more. Destroyed by the awesome power of the Sun, and by the terrible dread of mine vengeance.

Then, and only then, will Pluto know its failure, 12 years ago, in refusing to attend my junior prom with me. That jerk. I would have been a perfect gentlemen, but no... "I'm probably going to be exceeding Neptune's orbit that week. It wouldn't really work out."

Who's laughing now, Pluto?

--11:05 AM, EST, Ada, OH

Unadulterated stupidity
written 2006-08-25 14:19:18

Though, really, what would you adulterate stupidity with?

No-account, no responsibility bureaucracy, that's what.

I returned to this place days in advance of actually needing to be here, in order to sign and submit a single form to the bursar's office. That was virtually my only reason. Sure, books, scheduling, getting my apartment tidy - these helped. But the form to receive my loan check on time - that was the clincher. The decider.

So, I went to the bursar's office today. They have no idea where my loan is. Maybe at Financial Aid, they suggested. I asked what to do, what to do next week, what I should have done last week - all I got back was shrugs and "come back next week." Presumably to spin the wheel of bureaucrats again, and hope for the best.


--14:19 PM, EST, Ada, OH, "No whammies, no whammies, stop"

Where will they build the off-ramps of the information superhighway?
written 2006-08-27 18:37:56

Headed up to Detroit yesterday to play cards with strangers. Won a lot of swag. Am now selling the swag (well, the choicest swag) on eBay, and expect to turn a profit on the day.

I paid $2.39 per gallon for gas yesterday. About two weeks ago, I was paying about $0.75 more per gallon. There are upsides to living out here.

Reading about the Uniform Commercial Code, strict liability for defective products, and trying to decide if I want to stick around here and watch TV (which I don't have at home - or rather, any broadcast programming for my TV) or go home and cook dinner. I think the unpleasant heat in my house makes staying here a little more desirable.

--"She's kinda like an artist, sitting on the floor." 18:37 PM, EST, Ada, OH, I was hoping to have a chance to post in Detroit and see if anyone noticed the change in the dateline

Grass-roots political e-mail agenda
written 2006-08-28 10:01:50

Okay, I'd like everyone to see the following site: Wal-Mart November.

I'm somewhat certain that people reading this site either do not shop at Wal-Mart and are shocked that I would suggest such a travesty, or don't see the need to boycott Wal-Mart and wonder why I'd bother them with this kind of feeble pseudo-protest.

I shop at Wal-Mart all the time. I'm not proud of this fact, it's just the most available store out here in the sticks. I am, as I have stated before, a sucker for convenience. And Wal-Mart is very convenient.

However, I am aware of the way they treat their employees and labor efforts to organize. I know they ruin local businesses - I believe the relative dearth of other places to shop around the Lima area are a result of this kind of monopoly. There's information out there regarding the effect of Wal-Mart's reliance on cheap Chinese goods and its effect on the trade deficit.

Essentially, I'd like everyone, regardless of which side you see yourself on or what response you have to this effort, to think about why someone in South Florida thinks that a boycott would be a good idea. Maybe discuss this line of thinking with a friend or family member, see what they think.

I'm going to boycott Wal-Mart in November and see how inconvenient it is to shop elsewhere. More on that later.

--10:01 AM, EST, Ada, OH, there's also the creeping loathing generated by a Wal-Mart. There's that.

That was unexpected.
written 2006-08-30 16:59:38

I won some kind of contest. Some woman called me up and told me I won all this stuff, and I waited for her to add, "All you have to do is send us $435," or "sign up for our credit card and you'll be registered to win," or something. But it didn't happen. I just apparently won some stuff.

More later on that.

--16:59 PM, EST, Ada, OH

Deer Park, that's good water!
written 2006-08-31 17:50:33

Okay, Deer Park Bottled Water, a division of Nestle Incorporated, in association with the Baltimore Orioles, decided that I'm so cool I deserve the following things:

So, who wants to go see the Orioles on the 9th? I can't go, the commute is a killer. I asked my former landlord, but he works on Saturdays. Drop me a line if you want four tickets, BP passes and a tour of the Yards.

Then, who wants to go to Cooperstown? I have to wait and see if either of the dates I selected is workable, and by that time I can't register anyone for the free airfare. Basically, if you want to go, let me know. You'll have to get up to Cooperstown yourself, but I can get you in, get you fed, get you somewhere to sleep two nights.

Weird. All I wanted to do was answer Orioles trivia questions, and now I have all this stuff. It's kinda neat.

--17:50PM, EST, Ada, OH, does anyone remember that Deer Park slogan?

News from Milwaukee
written 2006-08-31 20:13:16

Comrade Bear sent the following transmission by radio:

Jill's water broke. However, rather than going into labor, she decided to play gin rummy, and won the first round rather handily. Tango Foxtrot X-ray. Over.

Watch this space for additional updates regarding the new addition to the Weber household.

--20:10PM, EST, Ada, OH

Hurry up and wait
written 2006-09-01 10:50:32

Oh, with Labor Day coming up, I have a long weekend scheduled. Not that I have anything scheduled for the long weekend, just, there it is. If anyone has any suggestions (that don't involve driving to Canada and drinking myself insensitive at a strip club), please let me know.

No word from Milwaukee. Presumably, Jill is still beating Bear at gin rummy.

Whoa, wait -- Labor Day? Jill's having a baby? Labor? PUN! NO! I wince and hope you can feel it.

I sent in the affidavits, etc., to the contest people. I hope to know in the next few days if this is a scam or not. From the looks of their website, it's legit.

I have to admit I expected a flood of e-mail by now demanding to know if there was still space available for the Cooperstown trip. Could it be that the wonders of the Baseball Hall of Fame are of limited appeal? Well, given the difficulty of coordinating a free trip, the people, the times, the sworn affidavits (they don't buy you a plane ticket until you guarantee you won't sue when the plane fills up with noxious vapor)... it's tricky. Ideally, I'll have a better idea on the date in a short time, and people can think about that then.

Alternately, I can go to Cooperstown by myself, and share my contest bounty with employees of local strip clubs, no doubt drinking myself insensitive.

--10:49 AM, EST, Ada, OH, "and hate yourself in the morning"

A sense of anticlimactic denoument
written 2006-09-02 10:53:55

So, I get home yesterday from class (Products Liability), meeting with career services (Daddy needs a job), and checking on my loan check (it's still not here), and wonder if I should check in with Bear, who's probably still doing the nervous imminent daddy pacing in a maternity ward waiting room. I mean, they can't play gin rummy forever, right?

I crack open my phone, and there's a message waiting for me. It's from Jill. Not Bear. My first thought is, "Oh, false labor, that's why played cards instead of, y'know, having contractions." Nope. Jill's calling people to let them know that they had a little boy. And just like the tone of yesteday's message, very casual. Like, "Hey, what's up, got about ninety minutes of sleep last night and they induced labor. We're calling him Jayden. Is there anything going on this weekend? I guess call me."

My opinion is that Jill should write a book on the labor process. "How To Have a Baby And Still Be Totally Cool" or something.

Congratulations to mom and pop, and good luck to all three Webers.

--10:53 AM, EST, Ada, OH

There's good news and bad news
written 2006-09-03 09:57:58

The good news: we have an ion propulsion engine suitable for spacecraft.

The bad news: it's slow.

But that's a step better than not having ion engines at all.

--9:58 AM, EST, Ada, OH, we're that much closer to having TIE Fighters

Being a geek pays off
written 2006-09-04 11:08:24

Cost to attend VS. card tournament: $25. Cost of gas to get to and from Detroit: approx. $20. Breakfast: $4. Dinner: $10. Total cost: approx. $60.

Cloth/rubber playmat with colorful logo, resale: $31. Special card with foil finish, resale: $31. Deck tin, resale: $17. Other foil finish cards, various, resale: $15. Total resale price of prizes won at VS. card tournament on eBay: over $100.

No, not every geek event I go to ends up being lucrative. But this one did.

--11:08 AM, EST, Ada, OH, the end of the long weekend

From my Estate Planning materials
written 2006-09-05 10:38:39

The average median income for males and females ages 25-34 was $29,864 and $19,396, respectively. (US Census Bureau, Statistical Abstract of the United States 2001 No. 675, 440)

--10:39 AM, EST, Ada, OH

Uniformity of Purpose, Congruity of Mediocrity
written 2006-09-08 10:39:05

Just some unrelated items.

I've noticed that the girls - not the guys, mind you - all have pictures of themselves and their boyfriends as the wallpaper on their laptops. I have not noticed this among married women, or among boys of whatever marital status. The pictures are often very similar to one another. It's odd.

Fantasy football league started last night. It's already causing me grief. I hate ESPN for being too interfering when I need control, and being too laissez-faire when I need help.

My loans still haven't come in. When I asked the bursar, they said to hit Sallie Mae and then financial aid here at the college. I did those things, but I didn't want to keep bothering the financial aid office - get more flies with honey than with vinegar, etc. I sent them one e-mail the day after I went to their office and asked if there was anything I could do, and they said it was all set, they just had to confirm my loans to the bursar's office. That was the middle of last week. There was no check on Friday. I went again yesterday to financial aid to confirm my status, and they said -- it was all set, they just had to confirm my loans to the bursar's office. (sigh) Apparently you can't get flies with honey, vinegar, or by having your forms filled out at the right time and going in person to make sure the flies are ready for delivery. I hate bureaucracy.

Generally speaking, I hate a lot of things. I don't have cable, I don't have cablemodem, I don't have my loans. I do have some chocolate-peanut-butter wafer things left over from last year, and I expect to be in position to have to eat them within a week or two.

I'm going to go read for Products Liability and then weep in a dark room somewhere. I'd weep in the financial aid office, but I'm not sure it would do any good.

--10:38 AM, EST, Ada, OH, where the elite meet to shoot skeet

Recondite raconteur and the dream of a new tree
written 2006-09-09 17:14:56

My apologies to anyone who tried accessing the site during the brief time today when it was offline. I registered at a time when I still had the old Sprynet address, so when GoDaddy tried telling me that my domain name was expiring, they couldn't reach me. We're back online, though I arguably shouldn't be spending my money on domain name registration.

And thank you to those of you who expressed concern regarding my financial situation - despite not receiving my loans, I am not starving or destitute. Thank you nonetheless, though.

Plus, my eBay auctions are bearing fruit now, so I find myself with about $100 I wasn't expecting to have two weeks ago. That's good, because Bank of America wants $118 to cover the use of my Visa - which I was using to avoid using my loan-less bank account. A vicious circle, I say.

Does anyone else miss the big ugly 1970s-1980s American car? Cadillacs, Oldsmobiles, Caprices - this squared-off, long, four door softtop just rolled up at the cafe where I'm posting from, and it's grey, and old, and has a hood ornament, and I just don't think they make them like that anymore. It's not quite a pimp car, and its not quite a standard sedan.

I think people should listen to Gnarls Barkley, "St. Elsewhere." Just the use of that album title scores points with me, but I've enjoyed everything I've heard off that album.

Don't bother seeing "Kingdom of Heaven" unless you're just in it to look at Orlando Bloom. Even then, your time is better spent at Terrible film. Very flat. It has some pretty moments - sprawling Dark Ages cityscapes, and siege warfare from the birds-eye shot that covers more than you can look at - but the movie, just awful. I'm not sure what I think about Orlando Bloom. He was okay in "Elizabethtown" but part of his acting in that movie was to be emotionally numb. (shrug)

Everyone who sends in a CD recommendation to me by e-mail will have that recommendation posted in a general grab-bag post next Sunday. Let's see what the readership is listening to.

--17:14 PM, EST, Ada, OH, at the moment I'm listening to Spoon, "Gimme Fiction"

(assorted swearing and impotent gestures of rage)
written 2006-09-12 16:27:25

I just wrote an entry for this stupid journal, then decided to hit the "close this window because I like erasing all the things I just wrote" button.

Salient points included:

I wish my loans would come in. I wish I had cable. I wish I had a pony.

--16:27 PM, EST, Ada, OH, "that's just the way the cookie crumbles"

Someone broke into your apartment and moved all your candles one spot to the right
written 2006-09-13 21:24:14

Laundry, the recission of arbitrable contracts based on illegality, and pre-nups. Though, Prof. Martin doesn't call them pre-nups, since you can be called to write pre-marital, post-marital, and non-marital agreements with a generally unified theme.

The price of laundry went up while I was out of town. It's a $1.25 per wash and per dry, now. It's still the cheapest price of laundry in town.

My class schedule is already messing with my head. Early Monday, Wednesday and Friday, then a solid afternoon of Tuesday and Thursday makes it feel like there's two separate weeks going on - one three days long and one thinly stretched from Monday to Friday.

We should know tomorrow if there's a loan check in my immediate future. Though, I realized that an incorrect amount ($15,000) was used for the initial request. That number should be higher, in the thousands digit. I've entered a second application for the balance, but I'm afraid that the second application is going to confuse the bureaucracy some more (oh, God) and delay my first check again. If it does, I have to camp out at financial aid. Just sleep there, and tell them until I have a rent check, they have to put me up. Ask to borrow clothes. Bum snacks and drinks off the work-study kids. You know.

Today I wondered why I don't smoke. I don't. But I wonder why.

--21:24 PM, EST, Ada, OH, virtually stood up tonight

Divorce law is some weird stuff
written 2006-09-13 22:53:01

(Regarding the division of marital property, specifically, lottery winnings...)

In community property states, if the ticket was purchased from community property, such as current earnings, as it almost always is, then the winnings are community property... In re: Marriage of Rossi, 90 Cal App. 4th 34... wife's lottery winnings were community property, and her efforts to hide them during the divorce proceedings constituted fraud, justifying the award of those winning entirely to the husband...

...Lynch v. Lynch, 791 P. 2d 653... husband's $2 million lottery winnings treated as community property, even though received during the course of the divorce action and two years after the couple physically separated...

Common law states have largely reached the same result, generally justifying the result, as they should, on the basis that the lottery tickets were bought with "marital property."

From "Family Law: Cases, Texts, Problems," 4th ed., Ellman, et al.

22:52 PM, EST, Ada, OH

Check one two
written 2006-09-14 17:17:55

You thought it would never happen. Well, I thought it would never happen.

I have my loans. Part of them, at least. Thank goodness. I can renew my license plates, pay my rent, order that book of Wendy's poetry, go grocery shopping, get a new battery for my alarm clock so that when the power goes out it doesn't lose track of the time... it's very exciting.

And not even on a Friday. Kudos to the ONU financial people - only a month late!

17:18 PM, EST, Ada, OH, if you can't say anything bitter and sarcastic, don't say anything at all

Did you see the way his helmet just flew off?
written 2006-09-17 17:31:46

Swimming again today. Swam farther this time. Intend to keep swimming farther until I feel like it's actually a workout. I know I have some former swimmers in the audience - how many lengths is a mile? It's like 64 or 32, right? A little help, please.

Watched Kurosawa's Throne of Blood and Scent of a Woman today - please don't judge me. I hope my neighbors can hear the screaming Japanese dialogue from my open windows, because I don't mind if they think I'm some crazy grindhouse Japanophile or a fan of Toshiro Mifune's dramatic work. Because both serve to increase my mystique. And that's what we want, right?

The Eagles lost today. How? Explain. I didn't see the game. And are the Phillies still in the wild card? I can't keep up - there's too much data.

No Orioles/Deer Park contest prize yet, but we expect a package this week. That's fun.

Have I explained my theories about growing up with nuclear dread, and the triple threat of The Far Side, Calvin and Hobbes, and Bloom County? I don't think I have. But they're important. Well, to me. Is something important if it's only important to you? Or is it just a neurotic quirk?

--17:31 PM, Sunday, EST, Ada, OH

Musical interludes
written 2006-09-17 17:51:49

Reader Chuckie Wendig from Perkasie, PA, writes, "Your webjournal is stupid but I listen to music so I sent you this e-mail." Thanks for writing, Chuckie, and tell your wife I said 'hey, baby.' Chuck recommends you listen to Lily Allen, The Red Hot Chili Peppers and The Knife. There is no link to the Red Hot Chili Peppers because, c'mon. It's not like they're obscure or anything. Lily Allen is known for rhyming the UK store Tesco with the Italian term al fresco. The Knife is reputedly Swedish electronica something-or-other.

Recent parents Bear and Jill Weber say the soothing melodies of Blue October and The Postal Service help put new baby Jaydon (spelled with an "o" not an "e" because it's "more masculine") to sleep each night. I second the motion for The Postal Service, whose music Carrie sent me a year or two ago. In an associated project, the lead singer for the Postal Service is the same guy from Death Cab For Cutie, which should get points for excellent name alone.

I believe that was the extent of the responses to my musical inquiry. If I missed your submission, I apologize. The guys at Penny Arcade! recommend this Weird Al Yankovic submission, "Don't Download This Song." When Penny Arcade links to sites, they sometimes become so flooded with hits that their websites shut down, a process they refer to as becoming "wanged." When I attempted to listen, it was "wanged" so I was unable to listen. Let me know what you think.

This has been your linkapalooza. Future linkapaloozas as merited.

--17:50 PM, Sunday, EST, Ada, OH, the tradition of the singing mayors of Milwaukee

Broken Links, or my time away from HTML
written 2006-09-17 18:01:27

Sorry, all of those links don't work, because my HTML is rusty. Please see the following:

Okay, that last one wasn't needed. But hey.

--18:01 PM, Sunday, EST, Ada, OH, in the informal lounge, lounging informally

Just accept that I'm stupid and move on.
written 2006-09-18 00:01:38

And now that second, "corrected" Postal Service link doesn't work.

If this doesn't work, I don't care, I'm done.

0:01 AM, Ada, EST, dumber'n hell

If seal is broken, do not use this product
written 2006-09-21 14:13:25

Inexplicably somber this last day or so. I need more vitamins or something. Did all my reading for this week by Monday night, so I haven't had as much to do since, which leaves me with too much free time, which is not necessarily a good thing.

I'm not putting any links in this post. That proved to be far more annoying than I had expected last time.

I just bought Sufjan Stevens' album, "(Come on, Feel The) Illinoise" on iTunes. I haven't really bought any music off of iTunes, with the exception of the occasional free song, or what have you. All of Sufjan Stevens' albums are available there, and at the default price $9.99 for the whole album. There's over twenty tracks on there, so I think that's a bargain. I may or may not be picking up "Greetings from Michigan" the same way (also a lot of tracks for $10). Sufjan Stevens is reportedly going to make one album for each state of the union - he's up to two, now.

I need a list of things to do, and I need to check off those things.

--14:13 PM, EST, Ada, OH

Wood paneling vs. Paris Hilton - the chess match
written 2006-09-22 12:31:58

So, I didn't have Commercial Law today. Why? Because the professor wasn't in town. Why? Because they're decommissioning the F-14 this weekend. And my Commercial Law professor, the former fighter pilot and squadron leader, wanted to go, presumably to say goodbye to an old friend.

This would be funnier if it was made up. It's not.

I think I'll ask him if he knows any of the Navy brass, and can help me get Heinlein's name on a ship.

--12:32 PM, EST, Ada, OH

What do you call that, that thing on the end?
written 2006-09-24 13:12:18

What am I watching these days? Netflix foretells all.

Howl's Moving Castle, Finding Neverland, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Double Indemnity, Sabrina, On the Waterfront, Crash, Arrested Development: Season 1, Kinky Boots, Lost: Season 2, Battlestar Galactica: Season 1, Battlestar Galactica: Season 2.0, Veronica Mars: Season 1, Kinsey.

There's a lot of TV built up at the end of that list - I might move some of it up to avoid the glut.

--13:12 PM, EST, Ada, OH, land of cable and cable-not

Poetry in the strangest places.
written 2006-09-26 14:26:05

I know I said I was done with links, but surely I can take a swing at this: Cat and Girl present the Villanelle.

Which reminds me, Wendy Waite's book of poetry is still awaiting me.

--14:25 PM, EST, Ada, OH, between Estate Planning and Domestic Relations

Yay free stuff
written 2006-09-27 11:58:02

So, a few days ago I received 12 coupons for free Deer Park water. That was nice.

And today, I received a plane ticket, four passes for the Baseball Hall of Fame, a gift certificate for food, a room at a fancy-shmancy inn in Cooperstown called, predictably, "The Inn At Cooperstown," some walking around money, and congratulatory letter. Also brochures.

So, in a few weeks, over my Fall Break, I'll be in upstate New York, browsing among the historical relics of America's pastime. Please feel free to come up and see me - I'll front passes to the Hall of Fame for anyone interested in the great game, and I have a gift certificate for food. I'll be there October 19, 20, and 21, which are a Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Sorry, Mon-through-Fri-ers, my Fall Break fell that way.

I regret that I cannot offer airfare or lodging. While included in the initial package, that required those traveling with me to actually travel with me. As in, from Columbus OH to Albany NY, and back again. It's a shame, but that's the way of things.

My itinerary is arrival in Albany at 1:00pm on Thursday, departing Albany at 2:30pm on Saturday. Stop by and say hey.

--11:57 AM, EST, Ada, OH

Wearing layers and laying in wait
written 2006-09-29 10:52:39

It's still cold. I think I expected it to warm up after a little cold snap, but I've been proven wrong. I've heard locals repeat that always-co-opted cliche: "If you don't like the weather in Ohio, wait ten minutes." Well, I've been waiting for a week or so.

I'm going to be shoring up, academically speaking, this weekend and in the weeks to come. I have the Professional Responsibility Exam coming up the first weekend in November, and a prep session for it the weekend before that, I'm going to Cooperstown, and I have to plan for a trip Back East for Turkey Day. That said, I have to spend some time studying and planning for the expected gaps in my study schedule.

Less sad this week. Yay.

There are some 2L girls sitting and chatting at the table next to me. One wants a Vespa, because she hates driving her car everywhere. One is outraged that the school won't let her boyfriend cancel his school health insurance, because "obviously" his dad's insurance covers him. And one can't decide where to stay in Las Vegas - Bellagio or somewhere else.

It's good to remember that this place is a haven for trust fund kids and the offspring of the affluent. Sometimes I make a mistake and think of them as people.

--10:52 AM, EST, Ada, OH, where the chickens is coming home to roost, y'all

Time passes
written 2006-10-02 10:52:59

Hey, it's October. Wow. You have to keep up with this whole linear progression of time thing.

Many thanks to the Concerned Citizens for the Conservation and Care of College Students (Carolinas Chapter) who sent me a package of tech, treats, the Onion and a bunch of weird stuff that probably only I would enjoy. Muchas gracias. I think I'm going to hold off on importing my music to the Shuffle until I've listened the hell out of it first.

Anyone who doesn't have an iPod Shuffle and wants one, should be aware that Apple released a new version of the Shuffle and the old one is cheap ($50). Did I mention this before? I can't recall. I guess not. I have a Shuffle on loan (from the aforementioned CCCCCS[CC]), but I think I'll get one for after the loan period ends. The new one is cute and tiny, but the old one has a inbuilt USB port, so you don't need a jack, a stand, a cable - just plug your Shuffle into your computer, like a flash drive. It's functional and adorable.

Time to talk about reasonable alternative design proposals. If I could make a ladder that would hurt less people, you have to pay me for making a defective ladder.

--10:53 AM, EST, Ada, OH, in the informal lounge with the lead pipe

How much sleep is enough sleep?
written 2006-10-02 18:37:38

So, I got up, went to class, came home, made lunch, it started raining, and I decided to take a little nap to see if the rain would stop so I could get back to the library and do some more work.

Fast forward three-four hours.

Why does that much of my day disappear when I take naps? Why can't I just take 30 minute naps, or hour long naps from which I spring up, refreshed, ready to attack the remainder of my day's tasks?


--18:38 PM, EST, Ada, OH

The fortunate few
written 2006-10-04 19:11:28

So many people want to give blood that they have to turn people away at the ONU blood drive. I got turned away. There's another one in three weeks, so I'll hope to not get turned away again then.

As we speak, the Mets are trying to win Game 1. I thought this was pretty much a done deal - the Mets would handle the Dodgers pretty easily. Then they gave up a 4-1 lead in the 6th. It's now 6-4, NY. I think I can support the Mets - moreso than a lot of the other teams in the playoffs. If the Tigers lose to the Yankees, it'll be a shame. No one else in the playoffs has much appeal for me. The Phils are out, the Chi-sox are out (Carrie represent), the Brewers won't see a playoff game until long after I am dead.

Have you seen the Tommy Lasorda ESPN playoffs commercial? I saw one. It was funny.

I only have one class on Wednesdays. That class was cancelled today. I've gotten a lot done in the gap. Paid bills, bought a sweatshirt, browsed the only used bookstore worth browsing, read for class tomorrow. I think I'd take a walk (or a run) tonight, but it's raining here.

--19:06 PM, EST, Ada, OH

Regarding David Bowie, evil twins and proper usage
written 2006-10-07 22:37:49

Music and television from the CCCCCS(CC) are excellent for making one feel as though one is connected to the rest of the world, despite a lack of broadcast television, in-home internet service, and geographical convenience to society. Thanks, you guys.

If anyone wants an Enfield Tennis Academy sweatshirt, let me know.

I used my new running shoes. Well, I tried to, anyway. The shoes are great. My body, however, is bupkis. Compost. Hazardous excess by-product. But, I did finish a circuit of the college, which isn't tiny. I confess, I did not run the whole way.

I'm reading Tim Powers' "The Anubis Gates" which I'm shocked to discover has a 1983 copyright date. Powers is still releasing stuff (his latest is "Three Days to Never" which was released in the last couple months, I believe), so I have trouble picturing his writing going that far back. I don't know why. 23 years isn't an eternity.

I'm also reading "Wild Cards VII: Dead Man's Hand," which is practically not reading at all. The Wild Cards books were trashy sci-fi back in the 1980s and early 1990s, and remain so. I would have a hard time recommending them to anyone looking for worthwhile reading today - much like pork rinds, you sorta have to already like them to appreciate them. An acquired taste, which I don't know how to acquire, unless you are 12 years old and looking for anything cool at the public library. Oh, being a big geek helps.

What are you all reading? At least one of you has to answer, "The Time Traveler's Wife" so I can say, "Wow, a lot of people have read that, I should really get around to doing so myself." I have Powers, Will Clarke ("The Worthy"), and David Foster Wallace ("Oblivion") coming in the mail from Amazon's used book store network. Also, you know, the Uniform Commercial Code, the Restatement (Second) and (Third) of Torts: Products Liability, law review articles, cases, and more texts than you can stick a shake to. A shake? Black and white, please. Mmm. Ice cream.

I'm getting off track. I catalogued (something in me wants to delete that "u" but I'm not going to) a large part of my Heroclix collection with the intent of selling it later this year. (Maybe if I spelled it "catalogged" that would do it... but I believe the present tense is "catalogue" despite modern usage which suggests that "nite" can be an acceptable spelling. I persist.) (What was I just saying about off track?)

I watched "Crash" today, thank you, Netflix. It was pretty good. The thing about ensemble films is the limited amount of attachment and empathy you can get for each individual character. Earlier this week it was "Sabrina" and "Double Indemnity" for some older, classy films. Audrey Hepburn. Damn.

Right, then. Heard from the Waffle King this week; good to know he's still hanging on to the face of the earth.

--22:37 PM, EST, Ada, OH, "Disco Libido (radio edit)"

We need more headlines like this
written 2006-10-07 23:01:03

"Tigers savage Yankees."

The word "savage" doesn't get enough positive play.

23:01 PM, EST, Ada, OH

I don't want the world; I just want your half.
written 2006-10-12 12:24:55

We're having a practiced international arbitrator come and speak to our Arbitration class this month. Also, the Kormendy Lecture is this month, and we'll hear about the Ohio Electoral College, and probably dig up some dirt in the most recent election. I missed a lecture last month because I had class during the lecture. For whatever reason, there have been two events this year I wanted to attend that were pre-empted by class. Also, giving blood (I must remember that), and--

Holy crap, it's snowing. No, really, I'm sure it won't last long, but right now, outside the window of this classroom,there's snow falling. For real-for real. That's weird.

Huh. Wow.

Um, yeah, got an invite to the ONU Hall of Fame induction, which I might go to - I'll have to dust off a suit if I do. Not much else going on at the moment.

Snow. On October 12. Man.

--12:20 PM, EST, Ada, OH, home of weird weather, I guess.

Weather update
written 2006-10-12 12:25:38

And now it's sunny and clear.

--12:26 PM, EST, Ada, OH, "if you don't like the weather..."

written 2006-10-12 13:18:03

It's snowing again!

The leaves are still green on some trees, and I'm only wearing a t-shirt, but it's snowing!

--13:18 PM, EST, Ada, OH

written 2006-10-13 08:55:23

My Sales and Secured Transactions professor just used the term "monkeying" to refer to a method of determining consequential damages in an installment sales contract breach.

So, we got brief and lovely flurries of snow out of a periodically clear, sunny sky yesterday. So, naturally, Buffalo had to one-up Ada - "snowiest October day ever!" or some other such nonsense - like there's any real rivalry between the two. C'mon. It was a long time ago, Buffalo, and Ada didn't even mean to break your collarbone and steal your woman. Let it go.

It's Homecoming weekend, so I have to figure out a way to get free food. I turned down the offer of free dinner at the ONU Athletic Hall of Fame, since I would only know one person, and would be awfully tempted to wander the hall giving out fake business cards and offering to rep young athletes on the East Coast. That kind of hope-shattering Friday night leisure only ends up one way - in tears.

Two hour long class this morning. Bleh. Fortunately, there is no second class later today, because it was moved to Wednesday. So, I may go back to bed after this class ends - or, I may start looking for free food. We'll see.

--8:55 AM, EST, Ada, OH, site of the 2006 ONU "Gone Country" Homecoming Celebration

Anywhere is better than here
written 2006-10-18 00:20:41

I tell ya, it's difficult trying to understand Article 9 secured transactions when Fall Break is thirteen hours away. I tell ya.

Did you know there are three airports in Columbus, and they're all part of the same regional airport authority? It's true! Now, if I could just figure out which one I'm flying from, that'd be swell.

The duffel bags arrived, and they are not duffel bags. Do they even make duffel bags anymore? When I say "duffel bag" I mean the long sleeve bags that I associate with Army-issue gear, that sling over your shoulder. The baggage I received is pretty slick, though - it's that modular, suitable-for-airplane storage bag that's popular these days, with a nicely embroidered Orioles logo on the front. I wonder if it's carry-on sized, because I only carry my luggage with me. Don't like it when my stuff gets away from me, like during the snowstorm that one year. 2005? Can't recall.

Earthquake Weather by Tim Powers is a sequel to both Last Call and Expiration Date, so I re-read Last Call before starting Earthquake Weather. Nice to re-read, and nice to start some new Powers. Looking forward to Three Days to Never, though I might leave that for after Christmas.

I'll be in New York for a few days (like you didn't already know that, if you read this, I talk about little else lately), so don't expect e-mail to be promptly replied to until Sunday or so. Phone calls may be answered according to trustee's sole discretion.

Congratulations to Julie and Dan, who don't read this site, but I think they know someone who does.

Things I regard as semi-necessary internetting: Pandora is a site that asks you what music you like, then plays you music that you might like, based on what you tell it. You can give it feedback (I don't like this song, I like this song but not right now, I'd like to hear some different stuff by this person) and it will remember your suggestions. And Lifehacker is just a place for common sense suggestions about how you do things. Some of them are computer-oriented, but some are just good ideas. Example - when you wake up with a good idea in the middle of the night, but don't want to turn on a light, find a journal, write it down, get mentally worked up, then try and get back to sleep - instead, do something odd to an item that you'll notice in the morning. Turn the alarm clock on its side, put your watch around the lamp, put your shoes on the TV. When you wake up and see this odd placement, your memory will trigger and remind you of your idea last night. Stuff like that.

It's late. I've been studying a long time, but admittedly not the whole time. I've studied a good chunk of these last three days, and the time for goofing off is upon us. Ave, imperatrix, goofituri te salutamus!

--yeah, it's late, if I'm making up Latin. 0:20 AM, EST, Ada, OH, "Goodnight and Go" by Imogen Heap

A comic... stripper! That'll do fine.
written 2006-10-18 14:17:52

Does anyone read the funnies anymore? The comics? Comic strips in the newspaper? I think that for me, and people of an age with myself, the comics were kinda important. This might just be an oversimplification or overextension of my own experience onto my generation

Jiggity Jig
written 2006-10-22 15:45:41

Good times in upstate New York. Beautiful autumn coloration, hills, lakes, country roads, the polite-because-they-have-to-pander-to-tourists locals, all of it. My flights were on little tiny jets which make you just a little more concerned about whether or not man was meant to fly - but no problems, I slept or read the whole time on both sets of flights.

Anyone visiting Albany is encouraged to stop in for a meal at Lombardo's on Madison. Good food and a waiter from the Northeast (Philly, obviously!) who makes you wonder whether he's your good pal or being openly contempuous of you. Highly recommended.

The Hall of Fame was great. It's been years since I got up to Cooperstown - since either Terry Heslin or John Hahn took me along with his famiy - and it's still great. The exhibits on women in baseball, the first two decades of the twentieth century, and the Negro Leagues were favorites. Got shots of Mike Schmidt and Steve Carlton's plaques which hang adjacent to each other. It's interesting to see how much editorial commentary gets into the text on the plaques.

Since I had way too much free dinner to eat by myself, I thoughtfully allowed an elderly couple from Vermont and a transient who claimed to be from Fort Lauderdale to dine with me. It was a good thing, too - I only ordered about $25 worth of food, so they soaked up about $175 worth of cheap wine and dinner rolls. To each their own, I guess. (Good to see you guys.)

Good times, good times.

--15:33 PM, EST, Ada, OH, back in the informal lounge again

All Hail The Waffle King
written 2006-10-23 23:31:19

A quote:

shame to hear about the rampant girlfriendlessness, but then, we all told you to go into mad science. we were all like, 'But, H-dawg, you could /build/ a girlfriend' and you were all like, 'No, i'd rather get one the old fashioned way. As part of payment for getting a mobster out of legal trouble.' Well...where are your morals now?

--23:27 PM, EST, Ada, OH, "One of Our Submarines," Thomas Dolby

Miss Manners
written 2006-10-27 09:52:09

Here's a tip on how to be polite:

In most - not all - but most situations, when someone says, "excuse me" or "I beg your pardon," they are not in fact seeking your forgiveness. They are trying to be polite. You should accept this polite statement with a reciprocating polite statement.

Example: you and I walk towards each other in a narrow hall. I flatten up against one wall to make room for you. I say, "Pardon me."

Correct response: walk past, and say, "Beg pardon." It's not so much that you're inconveniencing me, as I offered you the polite statement. You simply ought to reply in kind.

Incorrect response: walk past, and say, "That's okay." This implies that I am in fact inconveniencing you. That I have erred in walking down this hallway, and now I have something I have to make up to you. You respond to a polite gesture with an intimation of social failure. How dare you?

This has been your politeness tip for the day.

--9:49 AM, EST, Ada, OH, or maybe it's just here at ONU

written 2006-10-27 12:18:38

It's been far too long since I invited a stranger to stab me with a metal implement!

There's a gay rights group (in the Southwest somewhere?) that's trying to have the Red Cross remove the gaycentric questions from the pre-donation questionnaire. I support this move. More blood! More blood!

Also, more altruism.

I just have to figure out where the donation location is.

--12:18 PM, EST, Ada, OH

Willfully Ignorant
written 2006-10-30 10:52:39

So, coincidence conspired to get me out of town on Saturday. I was scheduled for a four hour exam review session Saturday morning, and thirty minutes into it, the power went out. All over town, no electricity. I waited a little while, but it seemed like the power was going to stay off for a while. Some friends were heading down to Columbus for a Heroclix pre-release, and I called to see if they'd left yet. By chance, they hadn't left -- one of them couldn't wake up on time to leave early, so they postponed leaving until 11 AM, which enabled me to tag along.

That was nice. Got to hit a used book store, and have Mexican food. I think Milwaukee's Mexican places have spoiled me - the place we went to had miniscule portions. Or maybe I'm just hard to please. Oh, and I won three games out of three at the tournament. Good day.

Had the review session Sunday, which was good. Will be studying ethics all week. Also got some shopping done.

This morning, however, was registration for spring semester, and the online registration system wasn't working. So, I had to get dressed and get across town to register in person - by which time, one of my classes was filled up already.

I either need a 2 hour class or the motivation to do a 2 hour independent study. Third year law students should not be called upon to be personally responsible for work, progress, etc. At least, that's my theory.

Oh, and it's November soon, which means you shouldn't shop at Wal-Mart. I'm writing a letter to the manager of the Lima Wal-Mart explaining why he's losing my $50 this month. Maybe $150, depending on budgets.


--10:48 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, the Tilton building on the campus of Ohio Northern University

Now that's what I'm talking about
written 2006-11-02 06:03:25

Had a weird day yesterday, where I languished in boredom or the existential torture of a truly free world (couldn't tell which), which I interrupted periodically to study Arbitration and the ethics of the bar-approved lawyer. Thank you, Susan, for talking to me on the phone to reassure me that I wasn't the only person in the world at that hour.

Swapped out Carrie's Shuffle music with mine. Carrie has good music, if any of you want to bother her for songs, but there's stuff I have that I don't hear enough - which is the purpose of the shuffle, I think. Currently listening to Booth and the Bad Angel.

It was 29 degrees out this morning. I'm pleased. I no longer feel like the big coat is overkill.

MPRE this weekend, then two weekends "off," then a too-fast trip back to the 215 for turkey and debauchery. In that order. I hope.

--10:03 AM, EDT, Ada, OH

I didn't know that.
written 2006-11-02 06:11:49

That's somehow remarkable. Did you know that Shirley Temple is still alive? I don't know when I thought she died, or under what circumstances, but I was fairly certain she was dead. Weird.

And did you know that a Shirley Temple is cherry juice and lemon-lime soda? And that a Shirley Temple Black is cherry juice, lemon-lime soda and vodka? It's true.

--10:12 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, I'm clearly just killing time here

Hotel Zulu Alpha
written 2006-11-03 05:59:06

25 degrees this morning! And snow yesterday. Ahhh.

I'm one day older today than I was yesterday.

--9:59 AM, EDT, Ada, OH

Quickly now
written 2006-11-06 10:54:15

It's illegal for anyone but a licensed physician to provide piercing services in Japan. Read about it from reports on the ground at the Waffle King's blog.

Also, illegal to call someone mean names on the intarnets.

There a team of American Bar Association observers here at the school for a few days to snoop and poke around and see what kind of rating ONU should get, or something. All I know is all the professors want us to stop IMing and surfing the web until after they leave.

Weekend was up and down - turned 32, studied for an exam, took the exam, bought some comics*, ate some food, almost went out for a drink but didn't have any company, and when you drink alone that means you're an alcoholic (or something). Though, if you drink with others, you're a "social drinker" which is also, I think, a sign of alcoholism. Man, I hate the modern world sometimes.

Good to hear from all'a'y'all who called. Thanks also for cards, letters, e-mails, etc.

Express warranties must be proven.

--10:51 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, under the steely gaze of the ABA

[*: She-Hulk, Secret Six, Strangers in Paradise, Omega Men, Blue Beetle, and what feels like one more]

Hoping each time that his next leap would
written 2006-11-08 10:21:46

Well, there was an election. Some people won, and some people lost. I'm sure there will be some claims of tomfoolery and skullduggery, but most of the results I saw were pretty decisive. All in all, I'm not terribly het up about this election. We threw out some rascals, but you know we probably put some different rascals in those seats. That's politics.

I voted a fairly down-the-line "Throw The Rascals Out" ticket. This was made troubling by a few factors - first, in rural Ohio, the rascals are so well entrenched that sometimes no one runs against them. Second, I was often forced to decide between voting for a male Democrat and a female Republican. It's hard to back The Woman when she's The Man. Also, I'm not really invested in Ohio office holders because I won't be here in a year.

I may have been the only person in Ohio who didn't vote for the hard-line ban on smoking in public places or the soft-line ban on smoking in public places. I believe the soft-line ban won. I believe people should have the right to kill themselves in whatever means they see fit.

I see Pennsylvania got rid of Santorum. I applaud all my friends and family in PA who voted against that hatemongering homophobe. Anyone who voted for him, well, there's confession and the remission of sins. Good luck and God bless.

--10:20 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, now with new and improved state government

[That last book I couldn't think of - Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters.]

Think no one can read you but I can
written 2006-11-09 19:30:46

It was 60 degrees out today. I had to carry my coat around with me, because it was too hot to wear.

Bar review starts tomorrow. It's kinda stupid, since the exam isn't until next summer, but I guess this lets you concentrate on a few parts at a time...? No, it's probably just stupid.

I have an appointment to bust out some needlers and plasma rifles, and possibly an energy sword, after the review session tomorrow night. I'm skipping Heroclix this week (there's a limit to how much foolishness I can take with that game, and 700 points is too much), that'll be the extent of my geeking out.

Thanks again to everyone who called, e-mailed, sent stuff, or made burnt offerings to pagan gods for me this last week or so.

--19:30 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, it's flat in the Midwest. Flat and lonely.

Good news for filthy vermin
written 2006-11-10 12:06:58

Augh. Miserable, awful mood. Seasonal affective disorder? (If that acronym is on purpose, that person should be beaten.) Ooog. Stupid moods.

Studying doesn't make me grumpy, but it doesn't really help either. Goofing off doesn't really do either, either. You would think it would help. Both work and play are only good for postponing the despair.

Clearly, I'm not working/playing enough. More work! More play! More staving off the darkness!



--12:06 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, "stave it off, 1, 2, 3, and now you can count to 3."

Set yourself on fire and sue the lighter c
written 2006-11-13 12:02:53

Man, time is short.

People contacting me are encouraged to ask about my outlines, exam studying, and final projects. Because I should really be working on those things.

There is a full week of classes this week, three days of classes next week, and a full week of classes the week after. Then, exams.

In and among these three weeks, I have a bachelor party, a turkey dinner (or maybe ham, I don't know, I'm just grateful to have somewhere to go), two long drives, four middlin' length drives (two hours or more), three games, exam prep, and somewhere in there, time to attend classes and do homework.

Not shopping at Wal Mart is going well. Unfortunately, groceries are more expensive at the local market, and the convenience of the market makes multiple trips to the store too easy. Mmmmm, snacks.

Sorry to leave that post about being moody up for so long. I think that gives people the impression that my mood has not changed because the journal has not changed. Never fear, I lack the attention span to be depressed for long.

--11:59 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, the military enjoys broad tort immunity from soldiers' suits

Don't blame me...
written 2006-11-15 10:21:17

...the voting booth kept giving me sodas.

The Onion tells you what kept you from voting this year.

--10:20 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, america's finest news sink

Take a little walk, no one will know
written 2006-11-16 10:38:21

There's a trailer up for Rocky Balboa somewhere. For as terrible an idea as that movie is, the trailer doesn't look bad. It's not the movie I was hoping the "last Rocky movie" would be, but there are a lot of Hollywood projects that I want that don't get any play.

For example, where's the Blackburn movie? And don't try to tell me that a mass murderer wouldn't sell movie tickets. V For Vendetta was all about blowing up the government and did fine. Crash was about racism and it won some award or other.

But this is why I would never make it in showbiz. I think more JLU is a good idea, and almost anything that got cancelled on Fox. I'm trying to come up with more examples, but most of them qualify under the "got cancelled on Fox" category.

I read somewhere that The Loop isn't cancelled, it's just on hiatus until its second season. Also, that focus groups showed that people didn't think the guy's home life was as funny as his work life, so the show will focus primarily on his office hijinx. The really important thing about The Loop is, of course, the theme song.

Shakespeare was right. I've got studying to do.

--10:36 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, a wretched hive of scum and villainy

Looking for the monkey but he can't be fou
written 2006-11-17 20:06:17

The subject line here is not an attempt to get you to listen to "Hockey Monkey" again - though by all means, please do so, the link is just below this post - but rather to see how many characters will fit in the title field.

It's Friday. Whoo. Weekend. I'll be playing some games, doing laundry, cleaning my apartment, trying to distill what people want for Christmas, and enjoying my new brakes. Well, not really new, I guess they just cleaned and shined them up a little. I expected them to replace them altogether, because of the hideous metal-on-metal noise that was screaming out of my wheel well. But, I guess not.

One outline started, probably finished today, another one probably done by tomorrow. There's a certain element of risk in finishing the outline before the class itself is complete, but I know there won't be enough to time to finish them all between the end of classes and the start of exams. Plus, that time will be better spent studying said outlines.

--12:28 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, posted late

College Football - it's not just for the p
written 2006-11-18 22:04:30

C'mon. I want a piece of fried chicken too. It's not fair, the way you just sit there, eating your leg piece, either unwilling or unaware to share the provenance of said fried food with me. I'm not saying we're friends or anything, or that you owe me a piece of chicken, I'm just saying I would like one. Or to know where to get one. You know?

Fine. Whatever. Forget it. I ate already, anyhow.

This is probably payback by law student karma for my trick on Friday. While sitting quietly in the formal lounge with a few other, equally quiet scholars, these three girls came in with KFC, talking loudly about who was going to the annual formal with whom, and who they thought was an ass, and who wore too much makeup, et cetera, et cetera. Peter Cetera.

So, the other quiet people glare quietly and roll their eyes, and look at me and each other to see if we're also getting annoyed at this. I was on the way out anyway, so I wasn't particularly bothered. But I understood the annoyance, so I walked up to these loud girls, and informed them that food and drink wasn't allowed in the formal lounge. Then I turned and left. The lounge was dead silent for the length of the time it took me to leave. I don't know if they left or stayed, if they kept eating or not, but I know they were bothered enough to silently regard me as I left. At least one of the other people studying was grinning, though.

I'm sure they completely disregarded my polite reminder, and kept babbling on as well. But I also bet they were just a smidgeon uncomfortable, with the lingering fear that the next person to warn them about the food in the lounge would be a Dean, or worse, a secretary.

And this, this has made it all worthwhile.

Two outlines down, and I expect at least one more done before Turkey Weekend. Naturally, they still need work, and I'm starting to check out study guides and aids from the library to help with exam prep. But the bones are there, waiting for more flesh. Like a zombie. A zombie skeleton, if you can imagine such a thing! Ho ho! Aaahhhhhh.

I'll stop now. You've been polite enough to read this far. I shouldn't push it.

--22:03 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, Wolf-Spiders Ruleth The Land

Ain't that a shame
written 2006-11-20 08:31:00


--8:29 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, you don't wake me unnecessarily. You just don't.

It's true.
written 2006-11-20 13:48:22

So we're discussing prescription drugs in my Products Liability class, and the professor (well known for her demands that we think like litigators and consider real-world issues) asks what kinds of prescription drugs get directly marketed to consumers. No one immediately answers. She follows up with:

"Sex and breathing. They market to things that everyone wants to do."

--13:48 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

And then
written 2006-11-22 00:05:00

There was a big gap between me writing that last entry and me posting that last entry. My apologies.

So, today, my Domestic Relations professor shows up in class and says, "The school administration will not let me cancel classes right before or right after a break. So we have to have class today. However, I have decided to postpone the reading and our discussion for one class. Today, we'll have a question and answer period about the material. However, since I see none of you have any questions, you may leave as soon as you've signed the attendance sheet. Have a nice Thanksgiving."


I leave for PA tomorrow morning after my 9 AM class.

--0:04 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, two professor posts in a row

Start your stopwatch... now
written 2006-11-22 10:21:15

This is let you know I'm on the road and (presumably) out of contact as of about twenty minutes after this post.

It seems like anytime I drive somewhere without my laptop I find endless locations providing free wi-fi. And whenever I go somewhere with it, there's no wi-fi anywhere. I think I would like to go somewhere and post updates as I go, so all you people who don't get to take road trips can take one vicariously through me.

Not that a lot of you actually want to take road trips.

Anyway. Yeah, I'll be on the road by 10:45 AM, roughly speaking, and driving till after dark. More soon.
--10:20 AM, EDT, Ada, OH

Periodic mortality update
written 2006-11-26 22:58:40

Not dead. More later.

--22:58 PM, EDT, back in Ada, OH

That's the fear talking
written 2006-11-27 16:25:28

Okay, so, Ohio, again, yes. "But so then" as David Foster Wallace would say. (See, I go away for five days and I come back with witty literary references. Yeah, I know, you're welcome.)

Here's how you get from Ada to Bucks County:
Leave Ada at 11:00 AM.
Pay $2.14 a gallon for gas in Kenton, 13 miles down the road.
Reach Marysville and Route 33 at 12:00 noon. Head east.
Depending on traffic, get to I-70 and Zanesville at 1:30 PM.
Stop for gas again even though you don't need it. Prices around $2.04/gallon between Columbus and Wheeling.
Cross the Ohio River at about 2:30 PM.
3:00 PM will see you in the Commonwealth.
4:00 PM, PA Turnpike at New Stanton. Head east.
Two hours drive gets you near Carlisle, PA. Stop for food (and to not be in the car for a bit.)
You still have three more hours to go. Get to Bucks County (Willow Grove exit of the Turnpike) around 9:00 PM.

Ten hours, six hundred-some miles.

All worth it, though - people cooked me dinner, let me sleep in their houses - it was great. Thanks to everyone who put me up and put up with me over the long weekend.

--16:24 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

Get your torches and pitchforks
written 2006-11-29 10:13:20

Sea lions are rising up to destroy everything we hold dear! "They've had it too good for too long," said Admiral Whiskers, the nom de guerre of the leader of the Sea Lion Action Taskforce: Human Erasing Revolution (or "Ouureourooeoeuuuoer" in their native tongue). Whiskers and his band of revolutionary soldiers plan additional acts of subversion and terrorism, such as loud moaning yelps during on-site newscasts and violent mating right outside of the popular Fishermans' Wharf restaurant during peak dinner hours.

In other news, a complicated sting operation resulted in the arrest of Pudgy X, a well-known manatee subversive, outside Miami, FL. The arrest is not thought to have been connected with the upsurgence of sea lion activity in San Francisco, as the two groups share little in the way of ideology.

Also, this makes me laugh just thinking about it.

--10:11 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, let me show you them

Forecast calls for rain, Apocalypse
written 2006-11-30 11:28:32

So, I leave my apartment this morning, and look right. The sky is overcast, but of average brightness for 10:30 AM in autumn.

Then I look left. End-of-the-world type skies. No evidence of a life-giving daystar. I think I heard Wagner.

Also, the wind killed one of my umbrellas yesterday. Whatever direction I placed the one weak vane, that was the direction of the 45 mile-per-hour wind gusts. When I gave up on using the umbrella for its rain-repulsion features, then the wind kept getting into the inside of the umbrella and popping it open against my will. You think I'm kidding? If I still had the other computer (with internetability) I'd show you pictures.

Though, I could probably just attach the camera to the laptop, take pictures that way.

--11:28 AM, EDT, Ada, OH, where the wind comes whipping down the plain

Last Day
written 2006-12-01 09:49:46

Today is the last day of classes. It's also the first day of December. Some kid wandered through here with Christmas music playing and handing out candy canes. I'm afraid mine is laced with hallucinogens, so I'll probably give it to someone else. (I have irrational fears sometimes. You don't know.)

So, in the last day of Sales and Secured Transactions, the professor is lecturing, and we're all confused and trying to keep up, and it's not easy material anyway. We're talking about the right of a creditor under the UCC to repo goods when the owner is in default. So, he deadpan segues into this question:
(Oh, someone get Keith, would you? He'll like this.)
"What happens when you fail to pay for your exorcism?"

Confusion reigns. I start to think that this has to be a trick question, because an exorcism is a service rather than a good, and Article 2 of the UCC only governs sale of goods, and the contract for exorcism would have been the governing document.

Then he says, "You get repossessed."

Feel free to groan. Then the bastard expected us to stay on task and finish the class.

--9:50 AM, EDT, Ada, OH

Done and done
written 2006-12-01 20:16:42

And that's it for classes for another semester.

Prof. Young actually had material and used all of the hour and fifteen minutes of class today to present it - I was perhaps expecting a little review session, or an early reprieve, but I guess that's not how she rolls. Good news: her exam is going to be short answer again, rather than essay. When I had her for Torts, she explained how she hated grading all those essays, and now felt confident in her ability to write an objective exam on the material.

So, I'm (mostly) done my Sales & Secured Transactions outline and my Products Liabilty outline, and a helpful little elf lent me his Arbitration outline, so I'm going to knock out my Domestic Relations outline tonight and then be set for Studypalooza '06, starting Sunday.

Not starting tomorrow, though. I have a date with some old friends up in Detroit. You probably don't know them. They're from the 30th Century. Gotta relax a little before I dive in, headfirst, as it were.

Wish me luck! (Oh, and residents of Texas and Wisconsin, feel free to give me a shout out so I know you're not buried under snow and ice. Barry, to refresh your memory: snow is the white, powdery or flaky stuff, and ice is the clear slippery stuff.)

--20:14 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, Radiohead, Kid A

This is how it starts
written 2006-12-03 19:55:00

Oh god oh god oh god my finals start really soon oh man oh crap I have to study

Sorry. It's starting to get that way around here. People are skating a thin line between not giving enough of a damn and going off a deep end of scholastic preparedness and twitching intensity.

I'll be busy on Thursday morning, then again on Saturday morning, in case anyone wants to get ahold of me. Next week I have engagements on Monday and Tuesday. That'll be the killer, since I traditionally don't jump right back on the test prep horse so soon after completing an exam, but with only 26 hours between exams, I don't have much choice.

Ooogh. Should be a hoot.

Still haven't heard from anyone in Wisconsin or Texas. I drove up to Detroit, but they didn't get any snow either. Did anyone see the path that storm took? It's like it had a restraining order not to come within 125 miles of me. It circled Ohio. That's weird.

I'm going to go print out my outlines and go home and have dinner. I don't have a Sunday headache, but I do have some kind of cranial discomfort. I may have inhaled too much glue or something.

--19:54 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, but really, can there be too much?

The horror! The humanity!
written 2006-12-06 17:15:58

Augh. It's thick with dread around here. Feel free to not to take any exams in the next week and while you aren't taking them, think of me.

Also, I got you this.

--17:15 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, dichotomy central

E-Primal Scream Therapy
written 2006-12-07 12:14:07


I guess I e-feel better. (sigh)

Sales was a bear. I fought this bear, in a pit, while inebriated lumberjacks and trappers made bets above us. The exact degree to which I defeated this bear will not be evident for a few weeks. But I yet draw breath. The bear failed to kill me, or my mind. So, take that, you ursine jerk.


--12:13 PM, EDT, I'm going to Lima for a bit, then back to studying.

The name of my new punk band
written 2006-12-08 15:57:54

Electric Steel and the Defective Electrodes

--15:57 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

Misappropriation vs. isolation
written 2006-12-08 17:37:33

So, I think the person who has been unwittingly broadcasting his/her internet connection to the vicinity wised up. I've been unable to get my teeth into the wi-fi connection that's usually in my apartment's general area. Pity.

Arbitration exam in the morning. Got some advice yesterday from the girl who booked the class last year, so that's good to know.

Dinner at home tonight, and decompression.

--17:37 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

Two things
written 2006-12-09 12:17:26

First: when you don't write for a long time, say, when you've been using your laptop for any kind of notes, correspondence, or doodling - and then you write nonstop for three hours? It hurts. It's true.

Second: Arbitration is done. The professor included a 30 out of 70 point question that basically said, "You know the Federal Arbitration Act? How would it be different if you wrote it?" Speculation and personal opinion do not go well with four months of studying case law, black letter rules, and federal policy. As law students, we are encouraged to find the best arguments to reach the best results. When the question is, "What do you think?" we tend to come up a little short. (Except for those damn activists, the left-wingers, the right-wingers, the Green party girl who thinks everything is a conspiracy against third parties - those people always have something to pipe up with. I can only hope their agendas serve them ill when they try to use that stuff on exams.)

I'll say again, in what seems to be a running theme lately, "auuuuugggghhh."

--12:16 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, but my heart is in the valley of the River Volga

It hurts so much
written 2006-12-11 18:27:49

The only upside of all this is that it'll all be over by 4 pm tomorrow.

Products Liability was this morning. It was multiple choice. There was a great deal of specificity and accuracy called for. The questions were (in most cases) bar-level difficulty. I can hope for a forgiving curve.

Domestic Relations is tomorrow, and not at 8 am like the rest of my exams. I'm finishing my outline, doing laundry, making Crispness presents, my head hurts, I'm hungry, and I'm emotionally devastated by this morning's exam experience. I went home and sorta-slept sorta-passed out after the exam. Then, I made a list of everything I have to do before leaving town. It was intimidating. Included on the list was "unavoidable costs" which gave me an amount of money I can spend between now and second week in January. That amount of money should be sufficient for a pack of gum. And I don't even like gum.

Wish me luck. I'll be less crazed in about 24 hours if anyone needs to get ahold of me. Y'know, in a less crazed state.

Or something.

--18:27 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, listening to XPN via the intarwebs

Real quick
written 2006-12-12 13:24:22

Scientists in Wyoming trying to create snow. That's awesome.

--13:24 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, last exam of the semester in 6 minutes

written 2006-12-12 17:01:08

Pow! That Dom Rel final is done, and I kicked its ass.

Good note to end on, I tell you what.

I'm gonna go home, pick up a little bit, maybe call some people, wrap some presents - oh, and not study for anything for a few weeks. Ha! Take that, law school.

--17:00 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, but not for much longer...

So long midwest, hello mid-Atlantic
written 2006-12-15 12:59:12

Back in the 215, if anyone needs me.

Ahhhh, it's nice to be back.

--12:59 PM, EDT, Warminster, PA

Oh there's no place like
written 2006-12-19 14:58:54

Bust out some Bing for Christmas, you holiday scrooges! You can't have too much Bing, is what I'm saying. And not in an Infinite Jest sense.

Kicking it relaxingly here in beautiful Warminster, PA. Got almost all the shopping done. Will probably be done completely in the next day or so. Next hour? Maybe. Not making any promises.

I hope everyone is not beating themselves up this Christmas. There's a lot going on, and a lot of reasons to feel like you have to do everything, and be responsible for everything, or make everyone perfectly happy with whatever your holiday obligations create for you. But don't jam yourself up. If you make yourself miserable doing stuff to make other people happy, that's going to make them sad, so you lose. It's Christmas. Try and enjoy yourself and enjoy your time with family and friends and whatever else you dig on. That's not always easy, I know. But give it a shot for me.

Merry Crispness, y'all.

--14:56 PM, EDT, Warminster, PA, she's like an angel! let's put her on top of the christmas tree!

[no title]
written 2006-12-25 13:45:46

Merry Crispness, everybody.

--1:46 PM, EDT, Forest Grove, PA

The greatest trick the devil ever pulled
written 2007-01-04 18:18:10

Back in the 419, once again, arguably for the last time. Broadly speaking. I mean, this "last time" will last four months, and I might go to Detroit or maybe somewhere for spring break, but, still. I'm just saying.

Wow. Good times back in the hallowed hills and hollows of God's Country, Bucks County, Pee Ay. Good times for Solstice, good times for Christmas, some Eagles games, some out of town visitors, some blessed matrimony, some New Years festivity, a number of hotel rooms distributed inequally amidst these events. Poker, catching up with folks from back in the Charlotte day, meeting people from the internet (you can never trust a person "from the internet" until you play cards or drink with them - amended), getting career advice... it was nearly perfect. (Nothing's perfect, of course. This was a fantastic stretch of three weeks, though.)

Thanks to everyone who fed me, housed me, put up with me, let me hang out with them, invited me to their wedding, and what have you.

--22:12 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, let's kick it out

That's ridiculous.
written 2007-01-05 16:21:56

I just paid $625 for books for this semester. Good Lord.

--16:21 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

Beyond the ken of mortal geeks
written 2007-01-07 09:39:12

Anyone who didn't get to the Henley-Anthony wedding, and who therefore missed the world's geekiest vows, should head on over to Marty's LiveJournal page for a good read.

Congratulations, you crazy kids.

--23:52 PM, EDT, Ada, OH

Frozen dew on the ground
written 2007-01-08 12:17:10

Criminal Procedure this morning consisted of a Powerpoint presentation comprising two slides: one describing and defining laryngitis, and one reading "sign the attendance sheet and then go home." I wonder if we'll have class on Wednesday.

Law Office Economics and Management seems to be "Professor French Tells You What You Should Know About The Job You Will Have Next Year." This might be annoying to some, but at the end of class, he asked me what my plans were. NB: Prof. Bruce French graduated from Pennsbury high school about forty years ago, still has family in the area, and has a cousin practicing law in Perkasie. He's keeping me in mind for resume referrals and personal notes if I like. Hooked. Up.

I'm going home for lunch now, more Real Estate reading, and who knows what.

--12:16 PM, EDT, Ada, OH, the formal lounge

My schedule
written 2007-01-08 12:20:31