Kids in the Hall reunion

At the top of my list of reasons that I should be in L.A. next month is that the Kids in the Hall are doing a three night reunion thing in L.A. next month. The reunion is only being publicized through the blogosphere and by word of mouth and will be at the Steve Allen Theater in L.A. on February 23, 24 and 25. Anyway, you lucky folks out in the L.A. area had better get yourself to that show and tell me that it was the awesomest thing you've ever seen; while you're at that, I think I'll just spend some time wishing they'd come to Boston or New York.

Transformers: The Movie is teh suck?

Transformers: The Movie came up in conversation at work and one of my coworkers forwarded me a link to a rant about how much the movie sucks. I love that movie and I was expecting a stupid read that I would thoroughly disagree with, but instead I find myself agreeing with everything said. The rant is absolutely spot on in pointing out that Transformers: The Movie sucks and I find no fault in the diatribe; even so, I love the movie and am going to take passion over rational in this case.

Fencing

Necessary Background: I fenced (the sport with pokey things) in high school, a whole lot. Good, now that that's out of the way, on to the post.

One of the guys at work is a member of the fencing club (Prise de Fer) that is run by my high school fencing coach and I noticed this when I saw him wearing one of the club jackets. This discovery on my part led to a brief (~1 minute) conversation. Then, today, Wayne, this particular co-worker of mine, relayed a message from my old coach that I should drop by CC (CCHS, my old high school) to, at the very least, say hi. I decided to go by and drag my old fencing gear along, just in case I felt like fencing. I ended up watching the latter portion of the meet and then heading over to Prise de Fer's club space, fencing for a while and hanging out for a little bit. Despite not having fenced in ~5 years, I'm not as out of practice as I expected but I am more out of shape than I expected. Anyway, it was an awful lot of fun fencing again, even though I suck now. I think that I've probably found a good way to stop regretting that I gave up fencing, ungiving it up.

Incidentally, I was pretty good back in the day. I was varsity three years in a row, captain my senior year and ranked as the 163rd best, under 21 foil fencer in the United States.

Acetone and the truck status update

It's been a while since I've mentioned my experiments adding acetone to my trucks fuel tank, so just to prevent you thinking I'd given up on the matter, here's an update. I've improved the algorithms I'm using in my Excel spreadsheet because I was bored, so now I compensate for remaining acetone as a result of refilling before the tank it empty, volume of acetone added and I get rather more informative analyses. Additionally, I've added a more data points, putting me at 17 tanks of fuel on the chart. Currently, data suggests a near linear economy increase for my truck of about 7% at 0.15% acetone concentration (1MPG at 1/3 cup acetone). This linear increase isn't showing any signs of leveling off, so I'm going to start pushing the concentration up in the next few tanks. I'll give you a better write up with more manageable units when I'm satisfied that I've found the acetone concentration of maximal economy for my truck. I expect that I'll probably repeat this experiment with my next vehicle, and every vehicle thereafter for that matter (as long as they still run on petrol).

Moosilauke: 1, George: a little less than 1

Before I get into the meat of this post, right now I'm eating a Beef Stick and sharp cheddar omelette and let me tell you, it's fantastic. I'm making this stuff for breakfast next time I go camping with the guys.

Anyway, yesterday, I decided I'd set out to climb one of the White Mountains today. Taking a hike struck me as a good way to spend some time and try out my new snowshoes (Xmas loot, kind of). I was looking through my list of good hikes that I want to take and I decided to try to get up Mount Moosilauke (there's debate between whether it's pronounced to rhyme with rock or rocky, but I prefer ponouncing it as though it ends in uh). The plan was to set out around 7a today, get to trailhead around 10a, reach summit before 5p, turn around, camp at sunset and finish up tomorrow. That I'm writing this now means I obviously didn't succeed.

The problems began when I pressed snooze until 6:40a, then I had to go get some food for my trip so I ended up with setting out at the equivalent of 8a which put me at the trailhead around 11a. 11a was still a pretty reasonable start time by my figuring but then between there being a whole bunch of snow, the trail up Moosilauke being really steep and me being plenty out of shape, I hiked woefully behind schedule. By 2:00p, I had made it up 2/3 of the elevation and 3/8 of the distance, which gave me 3 hours to make it the rest of the way and find shelter. Figuring I wouldn't make summit before sundown, I figured I'd turn around, so as to be able to sleep in a proper bed tonight. Also, it was really cold up there (definitely <20°F, maybe <10°F but certainly >0°F), which had me a little concerned that my 0°F sleeping bag might not cut it. So I took the safer approach and turned back.

Coming down, as is always the case, was mighty quick, taking under an hour to cover the previous three's distance. Seeing as there was a whole ton and a half of snow, going down was a mixture of glissading and ass sliding almost the whole way. Also, the steepness that had been a bother on the ascent made the descent fantastically keen. I almost wish I'd brought a sled with me, though that's probably the sort of bad idea that would have tossed me off a cliff.

In summation: I'm fat and slow; Moosilauke is really steep; I like my new snowshoes.

Afternote: The highlight of the hike was the wonderfully amusing sign on a privy by the shelters where I took lunch that read something very nearly, 'THERE IS NO "P" IN THIS RIVY USE THE WOODS'.

Second Needless Banter Anniversary

Right now, this blog is about half an hour away from two years since fp (first post). Happy two years putting up with my yammering, Internet. To commemorate the occasion, I've found this fantastically keen plugin that generates an image showing what time of day I post. I've decided to set it to report over the past 351 days, for obvious reasons. The graph is displayed here and should also appear at the bottom of pages.

Blog Post Times Graph

Updated Schools List

Having begun the process of actually doing application things, I have revised the list of schools to which I am applying. The list, in an arbitrary order, is as follows:

  • University of California, Berkeley
  • University of California, Los Angelas
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Minnesota
  • New York University
  • Northwestern
  • Yale

That is the finalized list, I will be writing essays and completing applications in the next few days.