Day Trip: Skiing

Max and I have been meaning to go skiing this IAP and we finally got around to it today. So, this morning at about 7a, Max, Bryan, Gus and I set out for points north. By 10:30a, we had rented skis and were getting on the ski lift at Waterville Valley in New Hampshire. It's worth noting the costs associated with getting to this point: $34 for a lift ticket (with college ID) and $32 for equipment rental; totally $66. We then proceeded to ski, with a brief lunch break, clear through about 4p. The drive is not that bad, the price is pretty good and, overall, it's totally worth it for 5 hours of decent skiing with my friends.

The Greatness of the Melting Pot

I am an American, from my mongrel blood to my world views (I'm talking ideal American, not the modern political majority). Being American puts me in the unique position of being able to enjoy the benefits of the so-called melting pot that is my country. The melting pot involves the mixing and exchange of various bits of various cultures; one such bit is fusion foods, foods that borrow from different cultures. Right now I am eating fried kielbasa (Polish) and sipping good scotch whisky (Scottish). The scotch and kielbasa combination isn't terribly multicultural but it reminds me of my favorite food, kielbasa fried rice. Kielbasa fried rice is a wonderful Polish/Asian fusion food. I was too lazy too make kielbasa fried rice but that doesn't change my love of fusion foods.

No Sleep for the Wicked

Well, in theory I'm leaving very early to go skiing on Thursday and I kind of want to see Ian and Ben's robot for 6.270 at 10a tomorrow so I don't think that I'm going to sleep tonight. I'm pretty sure that I've got enough Mountain Dew and Cherry Coke in my apartment to help me stay up through the night as long as I can find ways to keep myself entertained.

I don't expect many people to be awake, so AIM isn't going to serve as an adequate pastime. I haven't got DSL to my apartment yet, so I can't waste away on the internet or do much with my computer other than watch movies or tv shows that I already downloaded. I'll make food at some point but that will occupy a little bit of my time. I might try reading this book that I found in an Athena cluster (more details likely later). Maybe I'll steal some Athena paper and do some art. I might even build a Whitewing.

It may be a little after 5a right now but this night still has a long time until it's over.

Blizzard Reanalyis

My previous analysis of this blizzard was insufficient. Having walked back to my apartment late last night and now having been outside once the blizzard has stopped dropping snow, I can give a better explanation of things. I need only one adjective to describe this blizzard.

This blizzard is ludicrous.

Blizzarding, like a whole bunch.

Oh holy crap, it's blizzarding outside right now, like a whole bunch. We've probably got about half a foot of snow and some drifts up to two or more feet; that's not to mention the snow-plow piles that are like 6 feet high. Also, there's like a whole bunch of wind and it's making the snow fly all over the place and into your face and crap. It's really cold too. Oh and it's supposed to keep snowing until tomorrow evening. Also, they declared a state of emergency. I love this kind of weather so much. Blizzards are the like the bestest things of all.

Also, my sentence constructs are stupid in this post.

Spyjinks (aka How to Get a DSL Modem)

I now have a DSL modem for when the DSL to my apartment actually gets connected. It was a bit of an adventure to get the thing and I will explain the technique so that others can obtain DSL modems more efficiently.

  1. Call speakeasy
  2. Sign up for DSL service
  3. Don't be in when UPS tries to deliver the DSL modem
  4. Go to the UPS tracking website and ask them to hold the package for pick-up
  5. Get annoyed because Third Ave gets cut in half by a bunch of stuff at the Cambridge/Somerville border
  6. Take a long annoying detour to deal with the severed Third Ave
  7. Get your package
  8. Decide that you don't want to take the detour again
  9. Find the break in the barbed wire and hop the fence into the MBTA train repair facility
  10. Hide in the shadows while a train slowly backs some cars into a hangar because you are trespassing
  11. Book it across the train tracks
  12. Find a gap in the barbed wire on the other side and hop the fence
  13. Jump down off a big stone wall
  14. Return home
  15. Congratulations, you now have a DSL modem

Ok, I guess that's not really the best way to get a DSL modem but that's how I did it.

Death by Peanut Butter

I remembered hearing, long ago, that peanut butter doesn't tend to go bad but that when it does, it becomes very carcinogenic. Not knowing the details of this little fact, I turned to the internet and found a bunch of sources to explain what was going on.

The molds Aspergillus flavus and Aspergillus parasiticus grow on a number of things and grow especially well on peanuts. These molds release a chemical known as aflatoxin, which is a strong carcinogen and has been linked to liver cancer.

The FDA monitors aflatoxin levels in commercial products and it turns out to be the case that the big brand peanut butters (Skippy, Jif, etc.) have the lowest levels of aflatoxin. Also, if you go to a health food store and get freshly ground peanut butter, you're dumping tons of aflatoxin into yourself.

So buy big brand peanut butter and don't let it go bad.

Bachelor Burgers

Having settled into the bachelor's life pretty solidly at this point I have recently discovered a wonderful new food which I have decided to refer to as the Bachelor Burger. Here's how it works; you start with cheap grocery store brand burger patties (all beef) and you fry them up on a griddle, then you drop a nice slice of pepper jack cheese on top (I'm using Cabot brand) and then drop it on a cheap grocery store brand bun. I don't bother with condiments (not my style) but the cheap burger, cheap bun and good strong cheese makes for a really tasty and inexpensive combination. Such is the Bachelor Burger and it's mighty good.

Application Away

I turned in my application for grad school earlier today; yes, that's singular. This year I am applying to only one grad school and if I don't get in I am going to go do something else. That is my plan and I'm sticking to it.

Anyway, the application is in and now I just need to worry about graduating. The rest of my future is out already determined as far as I am concerned.

I've chosen the track that I'm going to be on and now I just need to toss coal into the furnace for a while.

Myers-Briggs Typology

The friends have been doing up the Jung - Myers-Briggs typology test so I gave it a spin (go take the test; blog about it or something). It's a fun and interesting little thing and it's a better put together than most internet personality quizzes (certainly more informative than something that tells you which Britney Spears song you are).

I turn out to be ENTP, or Extroverted Intuitive Thinking Perceiving. This type is sometimes referred to as the Inventor style. Descriptions of the ENTP type can be found care of D. Keirsey or M. M. Heiss and J. Butt; personally I think they've got me pinned to a "t" (or nailed to a cross if you want some tasteless humor).

I took this test once a few years ago and last time I scored as INTJ. I agreed with that scoring then and I still agree that it is representative of who I was a few years ago. Back then, I sure as hell wouldn't have seen myself becoming an extrovert or becoming less judgmental.