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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Jason's LiveJournal:

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Tuesday, September 25th, 2007
7:12 am
The Business
Music right now: Dreams - Fleetwood Mac

Couldn't sleep. Watched some "South Park." Have a class at 8 AM anyway. "The Daily Buzz" is still an atrocious program that the most backwoods MyNet affiliates should be embarrassed to air.

What's with all the professors stressing weird growth in the internet market? Weird statement to open with, but I have no time to think up something better. But, for example, my Broadcast News prof talks about local affiliates doing netcasts and how cornering that segment of the market is important and blah blah...one minute you stress how TV's going down because of the internet, and how network news isn't as important and prestigious any more, the next it's the computer. That makes enough sense independently, but that would also suggest people are just tired of TV news as well. If I don't watch local news on TV, why do I want to watch it on the internet? Seems like wasted effort to me. Personally, just FYI, my news comes via a USA Today e-mail subscription deal and Google News.

But seriously, it's funny how all this commentary on where "the business" is going comes from people who I'm sure don't see all sides of it. I think for a lot of my professors the internet is still some hobgoblin that's cutting into traditional forms of media for "some reason." I just don't buy that a lot of the traditional means will fall so decisively to the wayside. I'm not a real advocate of just having an antenna on your roof and your hand out the window for weather, but I'm also not one of those people who'd upgrade every time a new format or device comes out. I think for most people, what's out will be fine for a while until they really get stuff right. For example, my textbook for Broadcast History & New Tech class goes on and on about broadband delivery of content and trying to adapt to a world where everything's OnDemand. I forgot who said it on the game show boards, but TV is ultimately a passive medium. There'll still be a market for just flipping around and seeing whatever's on. I don't always feel like popping a DVD...sometimes I just want to catch what's on here, what's on there, etc.

But enough misguided rantings at a quiet 7:20 in the morning. Directed my first Video Production project Friday and it went superbly. Even after two weeks of runthroughs, directors are still hanging on the person who isn't talking. Watching in the studio, or in the control room with a monitor bank you aren't as bored...but I took home one of the scratch tapes from the practice runs, and it's so awkward looking at one person listening to somebody else for so long.

All the other classes are going fine, I guess. I also got a backup anchor position at NewsCentral. Hey hey. Ultimately not looking forward to the work, as I have to cram it in after morning classes and somehow eat lunch between writing it and pre-taping it. Plus, the director of the program wants to make it clear he has the power to kick people out. A lot. Gee, what a team dynamic. It was basically the first thing out of his mouth at the organizational meeting. Lots of anger and intimidation about getting things done a certain way. I love how they can be pricks in a learning environment and then turn around and say, "well in THE BUSINESS it'll be like this." Yeah. If anything, life has shown me that people talk about how things change at stage two, only for you to reach stage two and find things pretty much the same, only now you're taller and have to shave a couple times a week.
Thursday, September 6th, 2007
7:45 pm
Look, a Post!
Music right now: One of These Nights - The Eagles

Man, it's been a while, hasn't it? I'm moved in at college of course. I paid $55 to move in early on the Wednesday of welcome week, only for roommate number two to show up the next day around dinner time and the remaining two to show up on Sunday. Damn. That first day in solitude was bliss, though. Since then it's been pretty much the same as last year. The same food is in rotation at the good cafeteria. I still have to go to the shitty cafeteria on weekends. Etc. My cousin lives in the newer dorms across the train tracks, and damn if I don't want to get in one of those right now. Having my own bedroom? Hells yeah.

Went to the casino promptly on Friday of that first week because my room was filled with people playing video games, and I didn't feel like assimilating at that point. Lost my usual $40 and left. I did stop off at the "Wheel of Fortune" slots which are a penny a credit! Cool beans! Of course, you have to use at least 80 to play the big wheel, and that's only if you spin it up in the reels. Maybe I'll devote $10 to playing that one night or something.

What else...sold stuff at the trade center as promised. And by sold stuff, I mean, moved a few random kids books and a watch for maybe $12 all tolled across two days of mind-numbing sitting around. I talked about it more on "Talking the Talk," go find it there.

Got tickets for a "RAW" in October. Just like Benoit, Angle and countless others being off the roster just before we went to an SD! house show a few years back, we're stuck going in the midst of a heavy suspension period. I don't know precisely when our stuff is for, but we might see the return of a lot of these guys. Hmm.

Classes are just fine. Tomorrow will be my second 4-hour video production lab. Our studio for the class has three cameras and a generic news set. Already playing with the switcher to create Marc Breslow-esque wipe patterns was neat. I can direct more than well enough for the projects; it'll just be a matter of them keeping up with my commands. Hey, look at me being overconfident. Already in our first project we have to have one of the two hard cameras break its shot to take pictures from over somebody's shoulder. I can see that going "well." Already in a practice runthrough, when the director called for camera 3 to zoom in, ALL THE CAMERAS starting zooming in. Oops. Not much of note from my two broadcasting classes or my journalism class yet. I actually signed up to audition for a features anchor position on the campus TV news. We shall see.

Spent about an hour today looking at posts from Aug. 2005 - December. That's why I'm posting today. Seeing my life in little bits like that, no matter how mundane, was just cool. Lots of snarky comments from robrosko.

I bought an external hard drive! Finally! I was down to my last 4 gigs of 80 on this system, and was able to snag 250 for $80. All my friends kept telling me to look for sales, and it looks like I got lucky in that regard.

This year's welcome week was meh. I figured I didn't want a rep as a guy who randomly walks around (not realizing this is how people probably saw me last year) so I dropped my plans to go see what was up at parties down on Main Street. The following weekend, Labor Day, was just like last year sans the part where I foolishly bought fast food every night not knowing the cafeteria was still open. Every roommate left, so I could have music blasting and hoo hah.

I think this year may be the first in a long time I don't buy the new Smackdown game. At least not upon release. Many recommend Fire Pro's American debut on PS2 anyway. Plus, if it's a greatest hit like the past few, I can snag it for $20 and not be as disappointed with the pared down roster. Ridiculous that they so consistently mess up the line-up every year. They miss key people, include others who shouldn't be, etc.

Not much else I don't think. Meet up with the fam this weekend maybe? I'm REALLY looking forward to my Second Annual Arbitrary Visit Home in October now. Again, school hit me like a bullet train. One day I was loafing around like usual, the next packing in a tizzy having to get up 5 hours later to drive 150 miles and move into a dorm. But it's all coming together slowly but surely.
Friday, August 10th, 2007
1:10 pm
Small Change
Music right now: Just the Same Way (Live) - Journey

Not much since last post. I put a few things up on eBay that are doing so-so. There have been 4 bids on a Game Boy carrying case I thought wouldn't sell. I have three "Star Wars" children's book/tape/figurine sets, one in the wrapping, that have two days to go as of this post. We're going to rent some free, outdoor space at the trade center next weekend to try to unload more crap. When I finally got to looking through some boxes in our garage, there was some stuff from the last house I kept for no reason.

Went to Central to tag along on my cousin's orientation. I also paid off a $2.07 fine they just couldn't take out of the thousands in loans I had. Gee thanks guys. There was going to be a hold on my entire student account for the rest of the month if I hadn't have paid that in person.

Getting through the first season of "South Park" for Top Five Reviews. One more episode to go. It's better than I remembered it. Hopefully I sell a lot of bidness next weekend, and do something else fun. Just two weeks before I gotta move back in. Eew. My brother's coming down and we're having people over this weekend.
Saturday, July 28th, 2007
7:34 pm
Review
Music right now: Sunshine Superman - Donovan

We took my dad out to dinner this morning for his birthday. Ruby Tuesday...avocado chicken sandwich. Didn't taste the avocado, but it was good. The strawberry lemonade at Chili's is better though.

Plan today, go to a free concert as part of the whole boat race party...thing a town over. I went to see "The Simpsons Movie" Friday afternoon, and I put my (quick) impressions up on Top Five. Also going through "South Park" season 3 for the site, and prolly the SP movie to follow. Figure with all this free time I should do something with it. Saw "Pan's Labyrinth" recently too, and that was blah. And to make it 19 tangents in one short paragraph - if you have Facebook, add Flixster or whatever the movies app is called. It's cool if you've seen a decent number of films.

re: Drew Carey, as I said on "Talking the Talk" - it could've been worse. If they just had to go with a name, this is a good name to choose. I think he'll be awkward at the actual hosting end, but most viewers won't care. For being caught with their proverbial pants around their ankles regarding the host search, CBS certainly could've made an even bigger snafu. The fact they didn't pull the trigger on a Todd Newton or somebody equally as bleh earlier on is a good sign. But to start the search around Bob's official announcement? Dumb.

Going to try to go swimming or something tomorrow.
Sunday, July 22nd, 2007
1:21 am
Everything Must Go
Music right now: Take it on the Run (Live) - REO Speedwagon
TV right now: Surreal Life


Don't know if there's much to talk about. Went to a graduation party today. My brother and friends are in town, so my day's full tomorrow too - The Bash at Buffalo Wild Wings (which will suck outside of the food) and maybe some tennis. I'm looking to put a bunch of random stuff I need to get rid of on eBay here soon.

Kinda cool TV Guide Network is rerunning the "Surreal Life" seasons. Too bad I just missed the WB ones in rotation, because they were better.

Over the past few weeks, Wescott & Ken have come to town a few times. We ventured to Best Buy, had some tennis matches, board games, et al. Took care of a stray dog last weekend too for the police before the owner called up. Returned him after a hell-filled weekend on a Monday and sighted him about town on Wednesday or so. Pfft. He was a nice, strong yellow lab, but a little slow in the head and also batshit crazy. Long story short, he bit Ken when he got away and spent the first 30 minutes he got here chewing on his own leash and trying to break free. Sort of stressful to be dragged around by a dog you're supposed to keep that's not yours.

So here's hoping that eBay stuff gives me enough to cover the miscellaneous expenses left in summer.
Saturday, July 7th, 2007
10:07 pm
Brushes & Clubs
Music right now: Wilbury Twist - The Traveling Wilburys

Hey, just a month between posts. Not bad. Beat another random old video game - "NBA Jam: Tournament Edition." Took the Pistons to the title. Haven't played through it a second time for a different ending as the first ending suggested yet, but meh. Plus the fact my planned painting of my grandma's house came up on me suddenly. I was gone for about 6 days in total, painting for five. Her house is a bit awkward with two really tall spots and one tall rickety ladder to access them with. Everything but the dark colored trim is pretty much done. I earned the Corolla for doing that as well five days worth of great meals, some cooked by my uncle. Now to go buy some dried mangoes and avocados as a result.

The bad news is my grandma had a health scare. Another bout o' congestive heart failure. With some oxygen and a little reconfig of the medications she's on, she was back up, but with a bum leg. She'll be in rehab for 2-3 weeks, then to my uncle's house and then...who knows. We've always wanted her to move close to us - her house is 200 miles north of here in a more rural, colder area of the state. But she's insistent she stay, and personally, she's always been of able mind and strong will, so if that's what she wants, I think she should get it.

Went golfing twice since last post at the course Wescott works at on the military base. First game we played as "best ball" due to crowds and overall suckage in the ability department. Today we played individually, and even though the numbers didn't flesh it out, I was far from an embarrassment. Last time "best ball" came in handy because my iron play was all divots, no distance. Today was different. Same mediocre distance on the drives, but mediocre distance on the irons as well! There's one sentence that didn't expect an exclamation point at the end of it...

The trip to Cedar Point went alright. First time I took the Rolla on the freeway. It has a smaller engine than the dear departed Taurus so I needed some room to get up to freeway speed. Plus I found out how sensitive the little bugger is to anybody moving about in the car or slight winds. Just glad to figure out it wasn't a blown/leaky tire. The park was nice, we got on the Force within 15 minutes, with the longest line being...crappy Disaster Transport. Dunno why that always gets backed up. Raptor might've been longer, but at least there you knew you had a light at the end of the tunnel, so you don't watch the clock. We left around 6 PM, ate at Denny's in Monroe and found our way home.

I suppose that's it. Two places called back for jobs, but neither figured out I was due back at school at the end of August. The comparison is like somebody trying to find work on Long Island with an entry for college as "Upstate New York U - 2005 to present." They just didn't read the app thoroughly enough. In light of that, I'm 99% certain I won't find work this summer. With two months to go, it's just too late to find anybody that still needs help.

So it's off to Dillon's for some socializing tomorrow afternoon. After that, and the rest of summer? Who knows.
Wednesday, June 6th, 2007
12:30 pm
Cruise Control
Music right now: Trinidad - Eddie Money

Scored some free tickets to Cedar Point through my mom's job, so we'll being going down there Saturday in the 'Rolla. Ken unfortunately can't join us as of this typing. According to Wiki, the new Maverick coaster is open. As I said here before, it's a bummer White Water Landing had to go for it.

I got a job! For about a week. I was training in making pizzas (see: learning where they keep ingredients) at a local joint. Then somebody who flaked out on them because he had "band practice a lot" decided he wanted money again, so I got the boot with 10-and-a-half hours under my belt at a net pay of $63. A Speedway station 10 miles from here was looking for somebody, but now, a few days removed from doing the app, no call. I'm up to about 7-8 places with apps, and probably the same amount in places that told me they weren't hiring. "Yay."

On the lighter side, I got to throw our podcast in another directory as well as a submission to the "Review of Podcasts Podcast." Eek. Considering his reviews have been of those high concept podcasts with one direction, this should be interesting at least.

Wanna know how bored I was? I beat the "Fun House" game for the NES. I had to use an emulator and save states after each level, but I did it - just had to see the ending. I put grabs of it in my "random game shows" album in the ScrapBook.

So I guess Cedar Point coming up and more sitting around. Still haven't painted that house. With money, I'd do something, or buy something, but all I can do now is just kind of...wait. I'm practically out of places a reasonable distance from here that I want to work at. And that's not even a picky definition - just no restaurants. And I even took a job at one for a week there! Argh.
Tuesday, May 22nd, 2007
1:08 am
$16,296
TV right now: South Park

This is perhaps the first syndie show I've watched enough that I can note the syndie cuts/edits with precision. Makes watching these reruns weird. I'm sure "Simpsons" fans went through the same thing in the mid-90s.

Well, long time no update, but it's really been tons of nothing. My demo tape for audio was awesome, I got an A on the project, A in the class, and another 4.0 for the semester. The move out went smoothly - dad came, we ate lunch, packed up the shit, went to leave, found out I still had crap in the dresser (thankfully before pulling away), went back, got it, left. It's since been weeks of sitting at home with about 6-8 job applications dormant. I've been home for about a month now. *sigh*

I did get a car though. 1994 Toyota Corolla with 189k miles. I've been cleaning it up and getting all my stuff in it. It's the "FUCK U-MOBILE" because some loving soul carved those words on the trunk. And the previous owner's initials were MJM. How do I know? It's underneath both door handles. Been trying to get that off for a week. It came with the original dealer sticker, listing the retail price (DER, the entry title) back in '94 along with the options it had. Neat. Had an adventure getting it insured, too. Ask me some time (maybe on Talking the Talk) to share my "trick" on getting State Farm to lower their rates. Needless to say, with one company offering over ONE THOUSAND dollars for 6-months of insurance, I was damn relieved to get the rate I did.

I'd go into more detail, but I figured this deserved an update, and it's 1:12 AM...and boo. I'll be off to paint my grandma's house soon to essentially pay for the car. Remind me to tell you about coffee creamer too. Eh?
Friday, April 6th, 2007
1:14 pm
$4,500 of Fun
Music right now: Summer Breeze - Seals & Croft

Weird weather here, with sparse blowing snow that barely stays on the ground, clear skies, and cold temperatures.

The WrestleMania RundownCollapse )

On my way home to come back on Monday, where I had planned to putt-putt and whatever with my brother, my car finally died. All WrestleMania weekend it was downshifting poorly, and on Saturday night even made grinding sounds like a blender crushing ice when in park. The thing just slowed down gradually on the freeway Monday. 65...60...55...you'd press the gas, get revving, and slow down even more. I pulled over hoping to start it just once more so I could get it to an exit, but no such luck. A cop came by and took me and my bags to a gas station, where I was able to get my brother to come get me. Putting in an older transmission to replace the broken one had a price tag of $2,200 and a whole new one was $3,700. Needless to say - no more Taurus. I could probably do a post the length of my WrestleMania recap to eulogize the Taurus. What a fun car.

In any event, I was pleased to find I had a job offer in my Gmail box when I came home. I had to turn it down because it meant moving to California on April 9th and basically throwing away the last two months of this semester. But I "have a contact" for lack of a better term, and it was such a pleasant turn around after losing my poor car.

Today we critiqued the station imaging project in Audio Production. Mine got a resounding reaction, and I was pleased. Again, for broadcast majors, you'd think more of them would know in the back of their heads what these IDs should sound like. You don't go "the latest hits" and then slowly fade in a 15 second clip. You GO GO GO. Some people did really clever stuff with "Simpsons" drops and funny catch phrases and cool effects. But the people who missed the mark on this one REALLY missed it.

My dad's about 60 miles away from here with my car, getting all of my crap out of it. We have some vague ideas of what to do. All I can say now is that they'll be picking me up rather than me driving home in May. This weekend I have a project or two to work on, and then the final project, the demo tape, for Audio to look forward to.
Monday, March 26th, 2007
12:23 pm
Sizing Things Up
Music right now: Heard It In a Love Song - Marshall Tucker Band

Been getting a lot in order. Have a tentative class schedule for fall all set up. Registration started today technically, but because of my credits status, I can't login for two weeks. BCA classes fill up like THAT, so I may have to rework a detail or two, but it'd be nice to get my planned sched here.

Also calculated gas for WrestleMania weekend. Not counting the 120 mile round trip from here to John & Ken's apartment, it's about 500 miles on the ol' Taurus. Wescott told me there's construction on I-94, the main artery that would've taken us from my house in East China to Ford Field lickety split. Good news is, big bad Gratiot Road hooks you up with the metro area quite easily, but that's surface streets, and more miles. I'll see exactly where they have the barrels, and hopefully just take a few swishes and merges and end up around the same 500 mile goal. But 500 miles is roughly $20 a person, just for gas alone. Then we each pay parking one day this weekend, which'll prolly be $15 or so. Then I want the program to remember the show by, and that'll be a ridiculous price too, I bet.

Oh, hey, we added an RSS feed at "Talking the Talk" and we're listed in a few podcasting directories. To all who have listened and shared their praise, thank you very much. We're having fun doing it, and I hope that translates.

Got some school bidness to attend to this week. Do some PowerPoint slides, get some audio files in order for doing my latest audio project (station imaging), then size up the carload for WM, return bottles later this week, etc. Play some "Bully" somewhere in there, of course. I'm in the last leg of the formal missions, around 60% completion. Figure I'll wrap up all the little goals elsewhere once I finish the missions. I like how passing all the classes as well as failing five of them are steps towards 100%.
Sunday, March 18th, 2007
1:12 pm
A Male Corset?
Music right now: Help! - The Beatles

Rob just posted the best "Talking the Talk" to date. We may have done 3 episodes, but darn it, this one's fun!

Not much happening to me. Wanted to do laundry today, but somebody vandalized the room, so it's locked. Boo. I have to meet with my group for Diversity in the Mass Media class today about our project. I'm sure that'll be so much fun.

I started playing "Bully" this week. I'm about 20% through it according to the game, and it's pretty okay thus far. It's nothing to go crazy over, but it's a more-than-serviceable game with a lot of fun side action, like the classes you take, dodgeball, boxing, etc.

Our WrestleMania weekend just got more packed. They're premiering "The Condemned" at the FOX Theater (site of the Hall of Fame) and tickets were free to Ken, so he snagged 6 at a convenience charge of $2 apiece (I think) and we'll be there with Stone Cold and some other wrestlers making appearances, according to the e-mail. My car will take a beating all this weekend, but it will be a weekend to remember.

Plan is to just exist as best I can here 'til the big weekend. I'll eventually have another paper to do in History, two more projects in Audio...but we're near the end, folks.
Monday, March 12th, 2007
12:43 pm
No More Break
Music right now: One Step Beyond - Madness

How the heck could I forgot this as the ECW-TV promo music? I just remember those long bouts of phone numbers, t-shirt order hawking, video tape promotion, etc. set to this tune...staying up 'til 1 AM to catch its airing in my area on the now-defunct PASS Sports.

We saw Jay Leno perform Saturday at Soaring Eagle. I've never seen the casino so packed. People everywhere, with long lines at coat check, the buffet, and a huge bottleneck when it came close to show time. It was a fun 90 minute set, ruined a bit by obnoxious people who yelled "TURRRRRN IT UPP!" like it was a Skynyrd concert of something. I stayed with John & Ken into Sunday, eating grinders and doing wrestling commentary.

When I went to leave, Ken told me Richard Jeni had died. It threw me for a loop. I wouldn't consider myself a fan of his in the least, but I saw a special of his on Comedy Central and liked it, saw him on "Match Game," all of that. He seemed like one of those "comic's comics" and pretty well-adjusted. But you can't help but notice he's really "only" been a comedian all this time, despite how many tickets he's sold, and how many times I've caught commercials for him performing in town on the affiliates. It's just awful.

That basically does it for my Spring Break. Temperatures have been wonderful, so driving's really fun again. Got here and unpacked with little effort, and am now just procrastinating in the face of making an appointment for that field interview and looking over history notes/powerpoints. Just a scant few weeks from WrestleMania, everybody. Whoo.
Thursday, March 8th, 2007
4:30 pm
Slide & Splice
TV right now: Mythbusters

These "Mythbusters" pilots are...different. It's shot like an independent film, with crappy mic work, obnoxious editing. You can see the germs of a good idea in them, but the show's infinitely better when it's thoroughly produced.

Not much has been happening to me, hence the lack of updates. I have started doing a podcast, "Talking the Talk." It's basically your wacky "Hot Talk" radio show, with manufactured attitude and random topics. Came just on the heels of me working with editing software in my Audio Production class, so it came out pretty good. We plan on posting new episodes every Sunday. I encourage you to at least give us a try or two.

Speaking of which, I have to do a field interview for that class coming up. I also have to renew loans, sign a major...basically all the paperwork and physical going-out-and-doing-it that aggravates me to no end.

I went to my grandma's following that last post, as I mentioned, and it went decent. Caught "No Way Out" that weekend too, and that blew. Ken got us tickets to the Hall of Fame ceremony the night before WrestleMania, so we're all loaded up for a great weekend in April.

Had a LAN party this week, being Spring Break and all. Played some "Counter Strike." I'm currently playing it online here and there via Steam, and having fun. Even though I suck and routinely turn in lowest or next-to-lowest score of everybody involved, people are pretty forgiving and it's passing time well enough. Also caught a few movies here and there - "Wild Hogs" and "Reno 911!: Miami." Put up reviews at the Top Five - both were decent, in short.

Going to stay with Ken & Wescott Saturday night following Jay Leno at the casino. I'll risk my usual $40 at the tables, and maybe after record commentary over a wrestling event with Ken now that I've hacked removing the original announcing from some of my DVDs. I hope the drive back to campus goes better than the drive home. It snowed right before I could get on the freeway. My car was behaving like a shopping cart with a bum wheel. Freaked me out so much I just pulled over (see: slid over) and stared at my hands wondering what to do. What usually took me 2 hours, 45 minutes to do took about 4-and-a-half. I was on the freeway at 25 miles per hour, witnessing accidents left and right. It got dark, and the snow continued to blow, causing me to look through what was basically that old Windows starfield screen saver whilst trying to drive. Temperatures look to be up by the end of the week, so all is well.
Saturday, February 10th, 2007
1:56 pm
Go Forward! Move Ahead!
Music right now: Josie - Steely Dan

Friday was easily the best class-related day I've had in college so far. Audio lab was spent producing live radio dramas; four in all including my group's. Each team of 3-4 was responsible for producing only. They would cast foley people, actors, and have one person mix the thing on the board. It became quickly evident that a lot of us misjudged our scripts' length and the time it'd take live actors and foley people to perform them. The first group had a whole Superman radio drama ready, only to cut it off before the actual caped crusader could appear due to time restrictions. The time limit was a rough number hovering between 4 and 5 minutes. Each group was afforded 10 minutes to prepare, 20 to record. The first group got three takes in - one to say basically "okay, let's cut this down" and two of the new version.

Radio Days -- really, really longCollapse )

Well, that was long. I've been soldiering through SvR. Took me two tries, surprisingly, to beat GM mode, giving me the desirable unlimited experience points. I'm not going to play a full season with a CAW Arn Anderson or something just to get him to respectable strength.

In the midst of that, I started reading this 500 page piece o'crap for history. It's not really a bad book, but it almost seems written in Engrish. It's about everyday life in post-WWI Egypt. I'm about a third through it, having started on Friday afternoon. Hopefully I can have this done by next weekend at the latest. I have to write a paper on it by March, and I don't feel like trying to recall big sections of the book weeks later. I'd rather suffer now.

Oh, and just to cap off what a nice weekend this has been so far, I passed by somebody in full stormtrooper garb on my home from dinner, AND all of my roommates are gone for the weekend. I'm still pretty content overall with dorm life, but it's night and day when you have a quiet place to yourself. Plans coming up - voyage to my grandma's this coming weekend, I think. Maybe catch a PPV and/or movie with Ken & Wescott soon. Spring break to look forward to in March.
Tuesday, February 6th, 2007
8:16 pm
On Fire
TV right now: Dateline NBC, To Catch a Predator

Uploaded a pair of new userpics, two new ones to MySpace. I took the plunge over the weekend at home. I bought myself a PS2. Another week without Palace to fill the dead space wasn't cutting it, so I spent just over $200 to get myself the newest "Smackdown vs. RAW" and system and memory card. I'm on my way to completing the first set of challenges, and after "Dateline," GM mode so I can have the unlimited experience. Playing through seasons for EACH created character? Ha!

I still don't have the official story, but on Monday during "Wife Swap," the fire alarm went off. Thinking nothing of it, that it must be another in a series of poorly-timed drills, I got my coat and stood just outside the exits. When a minute become 5, we all figured something was up. An RA poked his head out and told us there was a fire, that it was contained, but we needed to stay out. I've heard three versions. A, there was a fire in the cafeteria, and a water main broke that flooded some of the dining area and store below it. B, just the water main broke. C, there was a fire and the sprinklers flooded things. Whatever the case, it put me in nearby dorms' lobbies on the phone to cure the boredom. Everything down in that area but the store is back open already though.

I forgot to mention the best part about the PS2 buy. Hooking it up today, I found an audio output cord that allows me to feed the sound from all my TV activity through my computer and thus on headphones. Score!! I've been grappling with all of the sound in my dorm, and now I have the perfect volume for anything and everything in my ears. Hearing "Super Password" up close and personal was something else this afternoon. It also increases the quality of my samples from VHS tapes. Since the PC and TV are going at the same time, I became the first kid to have matches set to Journey, Steely Dan and Eric Clapton.

Watched the Shokus DVD. Pretty good. The ep. of Cullen's "Price is Right" was a treat, the "PDQ" pilot was exciting, and the rest was neither here nor there. I'd buy some of their stuff now. Well, plan is to keep playing SvR and not spend money. That's what I get for spending $200 to cure boredom. Might go to my grandma's this weekend with my dad. Might go see "No Way Out" at B-Dubs. We figure since we'll be at WM, we want to see every minute of The Road. Which reminds me, "RAW" was above decent last night.
Thursday, February 1st, 2007
9:20 pm
Hmmm...
TV right now: American Chopper

Overheard at college...

Guy #1 : What's on at 9 o'clock? Do you know what's on at 9 o'clock?

Girl : Do *I* know what's on at 9 o'clock? Do I have a vagina?

Guy #2 : PROVE IT!!

Been contemplating a lot of purchases lately. Should I get so lucky as to find another lump o'profit in my pocket (planned casino trips are several weeks away) should I upgrade my video software to Sony Vegas? It's about $50-$60 on eBay. It can do keying, multiple video tracks...basically, really simple things I should be able to do already. All of the possible production ideas that go through my head would be a lot easier with live track editing and the ability to do insets with more than one video at a time. What about a new PS2? With Palace on the fritz for seemingly...um, ever - I need things to do. And I wouldn't mind having the new SvR. This is the first year since they started on the PS2 I've been without it. And testing it out on the 360, I know now I'm missing out. All together the package would total about $150-$190 depending on what prices I get and where. Then of course, the big luxury item, one of those $200+ deluxe belts. My preferred title? The classic WWF IC belt. The 87-98ish one.

The Rumble at BW3's was okay. There was a panic 'til showtime that we'd even be able to see it. The designated wrestling area was populated more than two hours before showtime, with some tables housing one fat guy and five empty chairs. Jerks. Luckily, more wrestling fans came in and they put it on a screen...with a faulty projector. Another table complained with us and we got a 27" nearby to show it. Finally, once the Pistons game was over, we got the biggest screen in our half of the place during the Last Man Standing match. We had a pretty decent bill, pretty full stomachs and a pretty good time. The Road to WrestleMania is indeed on.

I'm going home tomorrow after audio lab 'til Monday. I might buy "Pat Sajak's Lucky Letters" if I can find it. I also have all my DVD winnings from various internet venues to pick up and bring home for consumption. I also need a LOT of DVDs, as again, having no Palace makes me a dull boy. I have used my time to play more "WrestleFest," and adding more ROMs to the stack like the original "Tapper" and "WWF Superstars."
Sunday, January 28th, 2007
11:32 am
High Scores
Music right now: Suffragette City - David Bowie

Add more arcade games to the list. I called-in to J. Keith Van Straaten's "Game Show Radio Game Show" and won some "Starcade" schwag, so I went over to the site to check out the new shows. Based on those, I downloaded Amidar. What an interesting game. I'm getting to the second go-round for the collecting of dots before I die. Too bad the ROM won't hold high scores.

I've been playing a lot of Asteroids Deluxe and Crystal Castles as well. Some of those "Starcade" shows had CC on them - and wow. It's a trackball game. Having played with my D-pad on the keyboard here only, I was surprised to not only see the kids have incredible control, but going right into harm's way before pulling back into safety. The way they just zigged and zagged through levels with precision amazed me.

Ken & Cott came as advertised yesterday and we farted around the casino like usual. Wescott did modestly well over video poker and the "Star Wars" penny slot while Ken lost something around $20 between those games plus the pick 6 wheel, which happened to be running. At the blackjack table, I stopped $50 up. I pointed out Jay Leno was coming to the casino in March, and given the high praise those two gave his stop at MSU, I used my winnings to buy tickets. Should be a good night of fun at least. They gave us $20 slot credit for buying the tickets.

Speaking of money, I went back after they had to go home and managed a big win night after a streak of losses or piddly profits. I had a $40 stake. Every time I had over $50, I'd turn one of my $25 stacks into a green $25 chip and pocket it. As the night rolled on, I had $100, then $125, and so on up to $175 in guarantee money in my pocket, and was risking stacks between 25 and $50. Of course, there was a kid who just turned 18 down the table who was gracious in accepting my help, but blabbed at least twice "hey, this kid's got like $200 in his pocket!" Cue the clearing of Jason's throat. I tipped about $10 throughout the night, gave $5 to a girl down on her luck and out of money looking to double down and still ended up with $220 total when it was all said and done.

The money'll come in handy. I went to visit the "QuizBusters" set again last week and ended up filling in doing the back-up score keeping as well as running one of the podiums' scoreboard during the lightning round. With me having no Wednesday classes, and them apparently being short on a regular basis, I offered to come in any Tuesday they needed me. It's 120 miles on the car, but it sure as heck beats sitting here waiting for my Palace access to return. I'll bring in my digicam next time I go to fill up a ScrapBook gallery.

Plan tonight is awesome. I'll eat lunch here, then jet to Ken & John's apartment, where we will eventually eat at Buffalo Wild Wings over the Royal Rumble. I was originally going to have to cancel on account of my audio lab time being tonight, but I managed to finish that after class Friday in about an hour. It was a live 2-3 minute newscast. I did about 6 takes, 3 that went to the disc, and it came down to two where I thought they were mechanically sound. I opted for the one in which I did not audibly hear phlegm in my throat. Eew. Anyway, the Rumble - tonight!
Sunday, January 21st, 2007
5:37 pm
Missed the Boat
Music right now: Suffragette City - David Bowie

My brother ended up stuck at work 'til 12, so no "Feud" for me. They took MSU IDs at the door, and each student with an ID was allowed one guest. I could've just asked somebody going in to call me their guest, but the whole point was to go with my brother. The time prior was spent going to Wendy's with Wescott and watching "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy." It was pretty decent.

I've been without Palace a few days. Some weird computer problem disallows me from connecting with PYLP in either the old school program or Phalanx, yet I can get in to any other place. I also can't access the FTP for some reason, so something's up. It all started when massive lag hit everybody in the middle of a game of ASBMBJS and then the server went down...and then I just couldn't get on at all. Anybody with a potential solution, contact me.

Lab ended early on Friday, so I used the remaining time to crank out project 1 in about 45 minutes. Next up is a 2-to-3 minute newscast where we must, live mind you, play a news sounder, report a few stories, insert a PSA, give the weather and close it all up with the sounder again. Can't wait. I've signed up for 6 to 8 PM Sunday night in the lab, in the hopes I'll be the only one there. It's not me being nervous of performing while others are there, it's the ambient noise they produce and the likely questions I'll get of "HOW DOES THIS WORK?" and "OOH, HOW DID YOU DO THAT?" It's just easier when I can sit there and do it alone. Luckily I wasn't on tape for a few blooper runs of my copy. It's been my M.O. in all performance to blooper as part of a regular script. No stopping, just a seamless transition from "...French's Honey Mustard is smooth because it's made from fucking up the track over and over again."

My eye's fully cleared up. Tenative plans this weekend are for Ken & Cott to stop by...and perhaps at a later time than usual now that Wescott is trying to change his schedule from working weekends to working just weekdays. Still not sure if I'm going home anymore next weekend, but we'll see. I've been spending my time without Palace mastering "Centipede" and re-downloading "DX Ball."
Friday, January 19th, 2007
11:06 am
Eyes...No More Eyes
TV right now: Price is Right

Not much interesting going on here. Went to the casino as I said I would, and lost a tad. Had $75 in profit sitting in front of me at the blackjack table and didn't stop. Managed to earn back some of my subsequent losses via the roulette table, where I went on a lark. Just did the red/black/even/odd sort of bets and made $15 in fast fashion.

Ken & Wescott won't be visiting in February - they'll be visiting in 8 days. Eeep. Well, that cancels out any potential casinoing in February then. No matter. Right now I believe I'll be heading up to MSU for some sort of "Family Feud" event tomorrow. They say the whole audience plays at once, but you can win $300, so it's worth a shot. Plus it gets me out of the dorm for a day.

I've been grappling with my eyes all week. Wednesday I kept rubbing it in my sleep. Come next time I go to the mirror, it's all puffy. The past two nights I've woken up and literally had to peel my eyes open with my hands and use warm water to dissolve all the...stuff. Yeah, too much information, sorry. The good news is, I haven't felt any pain and most of the redness is already gone.

So, this audio lab at 12 will conclude week 2 of classes. I brought some of my cheapie PC titles up to school with me, so tonight will have some classic Atari arcade games and maybe some Activision console stuff.
Friday, January 12th, 2007
5:54 pm
Talk the Talk
Music right now: Summer in the City - The Lovin' Spoonful

Oy. I'm going to have to move that casino trip to tonight. Two reasons - one, I'm really bored; two, Ken & Wescott will visit me in February, and I'll want something for them to do. I mean, if it's like their past visits, they eat a free meal at the cafeteria and we gamble. Not really much else in the area for out of towners.

Audio production lab was great. We have four boards in the class, each with a reel-to-reel, computer, CD player and minidisc player/recorder. We got acquainted with everything and got our first assignment officially assigned. As I said (I think), it's recording a 60-second spot to a bed of music. My script is for French's Honey Mustard. Ooh. We were split into groups to get used to the stuff, and everybody complimented me on my read. We had this silly thing about plaid shorts to read (pieces of this sans the sound effects), and I found this great music bed for it that everybody after me used. Just some honky-tonk tune that underscored how silly the copy was, no matter how serious my voice sounded.

With all due respect to those involved - if you're going in to this sort of area, why is it still a struggle to read spots? I mean, I went in there and fluidly read the thing (not perfectly, but pretty damn well for having just skimmed it before I went to tape) while everybody else sounded like they were delivering a speech they didn't want to give. You should have some sense of the job if you want to go into it. School can't teach you charisma. Luckily I did hear some pretty good stuff from other groups, and one of the people in my little faction was one of those quiet types who has a desire for the job and performed pretty admirably. Everybody in that room had a great sense of humor though, so it should be fun come time for the old-time radio drama and things of that nature.

So I think I'll cancel the movie this weekend in light of the casino. I'll gas up tomorrow and buy the headphone adapters I need for the class.
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