The Domain of Steven Pinnacle of Paperless Perfection

30Dec/041

At least now I have a greater resistance to flashbangs…

The anime movie Appleseed was a surprise hit for me. It had beginnings of an overly philosophical plot, but made sure the viewer wasn't too confused throughout. Of course, the brains of those watching it were distracted by the absolutely gorgeous animation. It was a fluid mixture of CGI and anime style, better than Last Exile or any other anime where the usage of CGI is blatantly obvious. Even if you're deaf and have no access to subtitles, watch Appleseed.

I finally caught up with the anime series Naruto. I'm sad that Sakura, the resident love interest, is no longer around to flaunt her crybaby, love-stricken, powerless self, but as one of the more interesting plot seeds has started to bloom, I'm being utterly entranced by the series.

Friday Night Lights, like almost all other football movies, was enjoyable. It wasn't great, but enjoyable. The games were very exciting, the drama was (slightly) touching, and it wasn't sugar-coated. In fact, it's like they poured salt over the spikes that were lodged into it, just to make the viewer miserable. It was the kind of misery that nobody expects, and because it catches people off-guard, it's able to deliver a pain that people aren't used to. That's what makes it memorable. Not the random slut who doesn't show up past her two cameos.

Christmas went well, as it does traditionally. Three groups of my family get together for Christmas: my mother, father, brother, and myself; my grandmother, aunt, and uncle; and my uncle, aunt, and their two sons. We meet, finish preparing food, catch up over an early dinner, exchange presents, then go our separate ways. Gifts have been increasingly underwhelming for me as I got older, which may have been because my list has gotten increasingly smaller as I got older. For the past few years it's just been money or gift certificates, which is just fine, considering I take an odd pleasure in comparison shopping and researching for something I want. Though I probably could have settled on what I ended up choosing even if I didn't spend hours exploring the options, but instead just judging the amount of eye candy.

Now I have to buckle down and do some work. Man, if only you could have heard how little enthusiasm and resolve was in that statement.

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21Dec/041

It would have been serious vandalism if I didn’t buy it

Christmas thingymajigs sent out to Jihan, Yoli, Anna, and Kate. I'm not sure what address to send Courtney!'s to. If you sent me something but I didn't, don't make me feel like an idiot later on; tell me!

And there are actually a few things on my Christmas list this year. But it's much too late to ask for them, so unless my relatives are better than I thought at following up on the inclinations towards certain items that I displayed, I'm going to have to use the money I get to purchase them myself. Not that I mind; comparison shopping is fun.

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16Dec/043

“Men, it’s been a long war; it’s been a tough war…”

280|1

I finished another drafting project. While this one is actually much cooler than the previous one, it's only cooler in theory. We had to design a vacation house from scratch, with 2400 square feet to work with and only basic guidelines.

The house I designed emphasized glass, light, and open spaces. Not only is the majority of the facade made of glass, but part of the roof is as well, which would be visible from the second floor hall and the dining room in the first floor. The direction of the house is such that in the morning, when the sun is rising in the east, light would hit both the master bedroom, one of the guest bedrooms, and the kitchen, which is where most people would be located in the morning. During the afternoon, the sun rises overhead to go through the glass roof and hit the entire second floor hallway, which would be a nice sight for anybody who was a late riser. As the sun sets in the west at night, the light and sunset would be hitting the family room, dining room, and study, which is where people would most likely be located. Finally, there's a vast open space on the first floor where the family room and dining room are situated, because even though it may be a family vacation, people often want to do their own things. A large space gives them some degree of privacy while also fostering unity, as everyone can be in sight of one another.

However, little of that is going to come to fruitition. Our assignment isn't to build a model, so the plans and this writeup are the only things that will describe the house. This project was also late (though not as late as the last one), so I didn't have enough time to put in furniture. The formal floor plans (three on the right) look pretty sparse without furniture, and though the preliminary floor plans (upper-left) have furniture, they have a number of the teacher's notes and markings. The bottom-left paper is where I made a concept drawing and put down dimensions and centering lengths.

I would have been done with this yesterday, but things didn't go as planned. I went to sleep at 9 PM to take a 1 hour nap. However, even though my dad supposedly woke me up, I fell back asleep, and woke up at 2 AM. I then slept and woke up at 1 hour intervals, going in and out of dreams, to finally get out of bed at 5 AM. And somehow I was still sleepy.

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14Dec/041

When I go to college, I’m taking my hard drives with me

Despite very uninformative subway posters and somehow avoiding all the commercials, I saw Saw. Let me just say,

OH MY SWEET JESUS

that was a great movie. It's the best scary film I've ever seen, beating out Jason X (which wasn't scary, but had softcore sex scenes and hot chicks, and actually made me laugh due to its stupidity) and Freddy versus Jason (which was neither scary nor funny, but had raunchier sex scenes, and explained the interesting backgrounds of both Freddy and Jason). First off, the gore. It wasn't no-holds-barred, but they certainly did not take any liberties to cover up the gore. It also happened that the traditional scary scenes, where the bad guy pops out, were really scary. Perhaps it was just me. I don't see a lot of scary movies. The ones I do see turn out to be jokes (see previously mentioned movies).

So Saw hits all the points of a traditional scary movie. However, there's also a number of thought-provoking themes in the movie. It's similar to Phone Booth in that the bad guy targets people who've been leading an immoral life, and traumatizes them to a point where they either die or become reformed for life. That's all I can really say, but there's a progression of plot twists that make it more than just random violence. However, I can say that the last scene/ending is full of surprises, and makes you want to watch the movie over again.

In slightly less R-rated news, I took a break from Naruto and started watching Read or Die. Another divergence, because I'm not sure

WHAT THE FUCK JUST HAPPENED?!

I'm watching it and I'm at the halfway point. Everything's pretty normal so far. Famous author, goes to the airport to meet an escort composed of fans of hers, drives away. Minor action scene, but nothing drastic. More random sappy stuff in present day affairs, my interest in the anime is waning. Then HOLY FUCKING SHIT the the anime takes a giant turn to the supernatural. Does nobody notice that these girls are manipulating paper like it was animate? It then dips back into normal-world mode, only to take an even bigger turn to the supernatural later on. Read or Die gets kudos for being to catch me completely off-guard twice in an episode.

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9Dec/044

*hand motions* Harem-no-justu!

The whole time, it never crossed my mind. Some people try it right when the foundation has been set, but I waited until the last night. I don't know why. I mean, if you look at my posts, or have talked to me online, or god forbid talked to me in person (and true talking requires that I say something that makes me smirk or giggle uncontrollably), then you'd think I was a pervert. Yet the whole time, it never crossed my mind.

It's not that I wasn't able to think of suitably interesting things to do that deepened it, but it was a preliminary step that I neglected. We had been alone countless times, and perhaps she even expected it. I can even recall an instance where I think her friends expected it. One night they were in a group and had met us outside, but for some reason or another, the leader pressed the group to leave us alone. That person gave me the strangest stare, as if she knew what I was thinking. Of course, I wasn't thinking anything at the time, and so the effect was lost. I couldn't mouth a "thank you", because honestly, I didn't know what the heck was going on. So we sat down, and just stayed like that, enjoying each other's company.

Perhaps that's all that I needed. Nothing more than company. I've always had some crush or another, but I've been happy in the times that there was none that I acted on, and simply enjoyed being with people. Perhaps that's the purest kind of love there is. Not pressuring the other person to do something, or thinking about doing something but not acting on it, since it goes against your better judgement. Just being good friends. That's all I really need, and that's what I have to thank you all for providing me.

5Dec/042

Wow, a game that took precedence over Half-Life 2

"Just know that whenever I see this in your writing, you're taking minutes off my life!"
*we laugh*
"I'm glad you all find that funny!!!"
-My English teacher

Sid Meier's Pirates! is the only game where I can:

  • Own a fleet of ships with my pristine flagship being followed by several captured ships in tatters
  • Get but not fulfill most quests, resulting in encountering three "Colonel Mendoza"s right next to each other
  • Free the governor's daughters that the Mendozas had captured but not return them to their fathers, resulting in several hot wenches residing in my cabin
  • Get fired upon by the ports of governors whose daughters I have, which says a lot about how much they cared for their daughters
  • Dance with grace and get married to a hot French chick
  • Get berated by the chick's father for sinking a bunch of ships belong to his faction, then given a promotion and his blessing to marry his daughter
  • Uncover buried treasure of progressively smaller amounts
  • Have part of the map pertaining to the whereabouts of my long lost father but not bother getting the other part, because getting the other part would be wasting valuable plundering time

Ken Jennings was cool, but this proves he's even cooler. Notice that the other guy is thinking, "What an idiot...".

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3Dec/042

As if my to-do list wasn’t long enough already

Whoever said I wasn't masochistic was wrong.

279|1

And I'm also thrifty. People said 4th edition was better than 5th, but the $40 dollar discount was what really convinced me. So here's why I'm adding more to my load.

  • I procrastinate a lot by watching anime or idling on the internet. During those times, anything is better than homework, and I might as well learn a few things while I'm in that state.
  • I feel as if I'm missing out if I don't take Stuyvesant's Cisco Networking Academy course. It's got the word Cisco in it, which not only means it's a course that's being watched over by Cisco for prospective employees, but it's easily recognizable when on a transcript or a college essay. However, I dropped out of the precursor to Cisco, Computer Technology, because funds were getting low, the teacher wasn't teaching, and we didn't have a book to learn from. Hence, I no longer have ready access to the knowledge I need for the Cisco course, nor the recommendation from a teacher. I'm harboring the shaky assumption that if I got A+ certification, they would let me into the course with nary another word.
  • A+ certification is damn cool. Like Kate said, it's got A and it's got a +, which beats all other things except for the occasional Japanese game where an S is the best. If I can't get into the Cisco course because of the certification, or I can't get the certification on time, the A+ certification in itself is enough of a shocker to give me an edge on my application.
  • I feel as if I'm wasting my time and letting my list of personal achievements stagnate. I'm taking one AP whereas other people have four or five, I have few extracurriculars to speak of, and my grades aren't that high.

This is something that not only would help me, but something that I want. I really really want. Usually, I'd just "like" to have something. I'd "like" to get a good grade, or to pass the test, or to get a game. It's rare that I truly want something, and when that motivation comes, I have to seize it and act upon it, because I don't know when it'll come by again.

So I'm making another firm New Year's resolution. I'm going to pass the A+ exams before the end of next year. I don't care that I only have user-level knowledge right now, that the test is meant to pass people that have six months of hands-on, full-time experience, and that the book estimates 200 hours of studying for a total novice to pass. I'm getting that certification.

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