For Tenbuki With Love.

I never knew I could have so much fun (and ENCHILADAS!) feeling the homeless! And feeding them was good, too.

This minister of the, uh, soup kitchen (who reminds me of Voldemort from the Harry Potter movie which I saw yesterday and by god is this a long parenthesis) welcomed me and sent me off to the head cook, who told me to make sandwiches for 3 hours, then to peel potatoes, de-vine-fy grapes, and cut out all of the rotten parts of old cantaloupes for re-use. Although it sounds like slavery, it was rather fun, and I'd rather get credit by doing community service with foodthtuffuth then getting credit by doing endless math assignments.

So when a giant bell was rattled back and forth and it was time to SLOP THE HOGS!, I--

Insert break here meant for you to forget the atrocities committed in the previous incomplete sentence, and to move on while retaining sanity

Homeless people are really nice. I exchanged smiles with most every one of them, and even though many of them had probably been here every day for a while, they showed gratitude to us volunteers. So I served dessert (pies, cakes galore) for a few hours. Mr. nice minister man gave me 8 hours of community service. Hooray!

Then I drove around looking for James and ended up playing some DDR alone. And I went home and ate pizza. And then... nothing much. And...

6/1/2002 05:00:03 PM

(Note: I plan to publicize the latest blog at my school, so please don't mind if it sounds more professional than my usual drivel.)

In the past year at Terra Linda, my school's newspaper, the Voice of Troy, has made the jump from printed to online. All of the stories written in Journalism class have been placed on the school's website for the whole world to see. The mistake Journalism made? They nixed the offline version. Biggest mistake in the paper's history. Because the stories and reports are now open to the whole world, not only has this change made them vaguer, but it has erased virtually all opinion from them altogether. In fact, the Opinion section is gone, and has been replaced by restaurant reviews, and touchy-feely stories on basic high school social concepts (like "senioritis"). Also, barely anyone reads the paper anymore since it's not shoved in their faces, giving the writers and editors more freedom to do less, since no one cares anymore. The Voice of Troy has become one of the most trivial and bland parts of TL's student creations.

It wasn't always this way. This realization that the Voice of Troy ultimately sucks was spawned when my U.S. History class came across old issues of the Voice from the 1970's. We were amazed! In fact, even though none of the information had any significance to us, we all thoroughly enjoyed the papers. Why? Because there was charisma, there was style, there was opinion, and there was motivation. The articles covered everything from the nicknames of the JV soccer team members to poking fun at dehydration problems facing the school. There was at least one opinion page in each issue (published 8 times a year), and a comic to go along with it... a really good comic that stole no punch lines from other comic strips or lame jokes, like I've seen in more recent student comics. Maybe this was because of the revolutionary attitude of the 1970's, or maybe it was because the internet wasn't around to sap the creativity from all of our writers.

Now I wouldn't just put this opinion out without some course of action, or a least a suggestion, seeing that I haven't signed up for Journalism next year. Revamp the entire Voice of Troy. Start over, if needed. Adopt a new philosophy of localization, which will make the articles more interesting to read since they touch on things that directly affect us, the students. (The most recent Voice of Troy has an article about Lisa Lopez's death. How about an article about the Dixie/San Rafael District unification issue?) Get more students to help out. Accept freelance work. Take photos. Have interviews. And most importantly of all, PUBLISH the damn thing. And I know in this day and age, publishing funds may be hard to come across... well, accept advertisements from local companies like the Voice always did. The ads actually worked, while making the publication look even more professional.

Being a webmaster who prefers to type up everything and publicize as much stuff on the internet as possible, I am not saying the Voice of Troy should scrap its online version, but if the printed version completely changes its look and feel, the online version should act accordingly. Does this sound like too much work? Well, I know of dozens of people who would be willing to help out with publishing to paper/web, as well as many other things I've already suggested. Maybe TL can show how it feels by doing something other than electing "Candidate #1" over "Candidate #2" for Student Official Who Has No Effect on What Administration Does.

To support my point, I'll give an example of an article which definitely wouldn't be published in this sort of Voice of Troy we have now. Anyone heard about John Wang being disqualified from senior class elections for having risqué campaign advertisements? Probably not. If the Voice of Troy had one more issue to make this year, I'd be damn sure it wouldn't TOUCH the issue. The sheer mention of it would cause a stir in the administration and the student body, and let everyone know about something they may have cared about. In this NEW Voice of Troy I propose, that's the exact reaction I'd expect from the article. It'd be a perfect cover-page story. Would the administration hate it? Well, yeah, the administration always hated the Voice when it touched on "sensitive" issues like these. But hey, this is America, and we as its inhabitants are entitled to our Bill of Rights.
5/30/2002 07:21:11 PM

Boy, do I love Fark. And, uh, since I can't put a link inside a link, here's Fark.

Over the weekend, James, my dad, and I went to Ye Olde Movie Theatre to see what James calls "Spider: Episode Man." I quoted him because you need to go to his site right now and because I can't think of a better parody title. I thought that it was the best comic character adaptation I had ever seen. Spiderman wasn't bent on bringing love and happiness and flowers to the world for no reason like Superman, and was a cooler representation of a black little skinny thing than Batman. It's probably because Stan Lee produced the movie that it had such a realistic feel to it, but kept the comic book attitude (the movie X-Men was also a good work of his). I thought the action scenes were amazing, mostly because there was a lot of emotion in each one. (Especially the one after Uncle Ben DIES. That's not a spolier, since you're supposed to know that from the comic... I did.) Of course, I was a bit disturbed with an explosion at a freaking NEW YORK LANDMARK, and I found it cheesy to have him grasp an American flag in the last scene. But eh, that's the movie industry.

Also about movies, we finished Metropolis in my anime club, meaning that the club's over for the rest of the year. I'm getting a lot of support from members of the club, so I plan to continue it next year (even though I showed all the really good ones this year). And I've already got a list of animes... Princess Mononoke (which I'd promised not to show this year because of a dare), Spirited Away (by the same people), and Barefoot Gen (the most brutal anime I know of... and it's historical fiction). Hooray for anime!
5/28/2002 06:11:54 PM

I completed another MIDI this morning - Piano Bar from Cowboy Bebop requested by Hellfire104. I really enjoyed making it, especially with the help of my piano. Now it's off to China Camp Beach where my family and I will do things!
5/27/2002 09:40:32 AM

Random blog time! And today it's about my dad.

Well, he's in an interesting position at work. I don't know if this is classified or not, but economically, Sun Microsystems is SUCKING. My dad, having worked at the company for 13 years, has had nothing to do for almost a year now. His project, Trusted Solaris, has been put on hold by the company, while in the meantime, governments from around the world want him to teach them how to use it. It's rather screwed up. But my dad's not depressed, he has more fun stuff to do with his time.

First of all is his new Palm Pilot. It's a Samsung phone/palm hybrid, with a color screen and other assorted goodies. He's bought lots of shareware and spiffied it up to perfection. So I can often see him playing a rousing game of Vexed, or Bejeweled, or whatnot.

But when he's on his BIG computer, he's having fun making a Java program for his friend, Dan Gilbert (whose site I helped design). Dan is the creator of Triazzle, a puzzle in the shape of a triangle, with triangular pieces. The object is to fit each piece, which has a half of an image on each side, in the correct spot at the correct angle. Maybe you should just visit his site to see exactly what I'm talking about. Well, Dan's been content with having just one solution for each of his puzzles, but recently, he's been wondering if there could be any puzzles with more than one. So he's asked my dad to create a Java program that would run in an infinite loop until it found a combination of 16 pieces that could be rearranged in more than one way. So far, the computer's been running for an hour, and it hasn't found anything. Wish it luck.

Also, what I find the most touching: my dad's in love. Even though he's married and everything, he's been recently reunited over email with his first girlfriend, who he hasn't talked to for almost 30 years. I can barely imagine how amazing and emotional it is to talk to a loved one you haven't heard from in 30 years. It's rather touching. I heard that my dad cried, hee heh. But the best thing about it is that my stepmom doesn't care at all... she also feels that it's rather amazing... but the other woman's husband probably would have a fit. Unhappy marriage on her part, I guess. That's too bad.

Well, back to "studying Chemistry!"
5/26/2002 03:46:10 PM


There's a big generic "w00t" for all of you out there who are visiting from RPG World. I hope you like my guest comic. I guess it's made me a celebrity for a day. And it's actually well drawn (for my standards, that is).

And yes, just to contrast with the completely reasonable clichés that Cherry is pointing out (a night town is from Seiken Densetsu 3 if nothing else), I've added in a stupid "chickens" punchline for everyone to laugh their asses off at. Yup.

Damn, I have nothing to say. I guess babysitting sleeping kids for hours really makes everything else seem much more exciting than it actually is.
5/26/2002 12:07:00 AM