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Saturday, December 8th, 2007
6:13 am - This is Not Ben

This is Anatol, and Ben has graciously let me borrow his account so I can test my website (computer science project).

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Friday, July 21st, 2006
6:38 pm - Free $150 giveaway!
Would you like me to get you a free $150? I know how to cheat an online Poker site so that it gives away 200 dollars as a one-time deal. Although, you would have to trust that if you give me 500 dollars, I'll give you $650 back...

If you're interested (and over the age of 18) just leave a comment!

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Thursday, July 20th, 2006
10:38 pm - Tee hee
As the scene opens, Ben is sitting at the dinner table eating a late dinner (about 10 minutes ago). Ben's dad, hereafter to be referred to as "Pops," is in the adjoining room.

Pops: "I'm going to go to bed."
Ben: "Goodnight."
[Error: Irreparable invalid markup ('<as [...] room,>') in entry. Owner must fix manually. Raw contents below.]

As the scene opens, Ben is sitting at the dinner table eating a late dinner (about 10 minutes ago). Ben's dad, hereafter to be referred to as "Pops," is in the adjoining room.

Pops: "I'm going to go to bed."
Ben: "Goodnight."
<As Pops exits to his room, Ben turns down the music that is playing, out of consideration>
Moments later, the sounds of live trumpet playing burst through the door of Pops' room...

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Wednesday, September 14th, 2005
5:12 am - It's not really 5:12 here
I don't have much time to post things because I am always too tired to put forth the effort, or else I am talking to Mariam, studying, or visiting with people. So don't expect much outta me here anymore (if you were still expecting after three weeks of silence). College is just like highschool except way cooler!

And now it is my bedtime.

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Wednesday, August 24th, 2005
1:58 pm - We've got internet!
Wow!

Never have I ever met such a group of purely friendly people in my life. The entire atmosphere of "don't talk to strangers" which we have cultivated carefully in L.A. is entirely blown out of existence. And it's hella sweet! :)

Anyway, the weather here was great when I first got in (really cold and windy), but has since become warm and sunny (bleah).

Something else lame about here is that I don't get reception for my cell phone in my room. :(

Time goes so slowly here, it seems. I feel like I've been here for a lot more than 3 days, but obviously haven't. Enough of this. But that's enough for now. Next time, though, I'll tell you a tale of cowardice, raccoons, and revenge.

Later!

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Monday, August 22nd, 2005
12:59 pm - Cal
Well, here I am at the Clark Kerr Computer lab. It's not too exciting here. Mostly just people sitting around on computers. That's okay, though, my feet are a bit tired from constant walking yesterday and today. Meanwhile, the weather here is awesome during the night and morning: cold! With wind and fog! My Fav.

The people here are very friendly, especially those in the dorms near mine. Speaking of my dorm, it's awesomely cool: it is a triple like everyone elses', except that it's bigger and has its own bathroom. How cool is that? And I finally get to have the top bunk (after spending an entire childhood literally shadowed by my older brothers). Wow! That's more significant a thing, symbolically, than I realized when I started typing it! Okay, I'm getting bored here. I think it's time to leave.

You guys should go to college already! It's fun and new!

By the way, classes don't start until Monday.

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Sunday, August 7th, 2005
2:54 pm - Karma?
A lot of people seem to at least half believe in Karma. They all deserve to be kicked in the mouth (just try it -- if you're able to kick them, they must have deserved it.)

Even if we set aside that silliness, however, the idea of it simply does not hold. "Good deeds" and "evil deeds" practically don't exist because everything in life is so interconnected that doing something which might seem evil could, in the long run, do much more good. Of course, that's assuming that there is an actual definition for good and evil, which is doubtful, because so many people differ on what is actually good. There were thousands of people who believed that extermination of the Jews was Good (and that's only the most publicized genecidal attempt out of countless). Therefore, as nice as it is to believe that the universe is balanced out and people whom you deem evil will be punished, it is entirely illogical to think so and you will most likely be disappointed.

Of course, Karma makes a lot more sense in the context of its original religion, because then there are definite bounds on good and evil deeds, and there is a higher power ordained to carry out the manifestation of Karma (which, by the way, does not exist in "good" and "bad" forms. Karma is always bad, like cancer. If you have any Karma at all, you want to get rid of it).

Even Buddhism doesn't work out in the modern world, though, because it is a grave sin to take the life of any other living (non-plant) creature. Buddhism did not know, I suppose, about dustmites, amoebas, and bacteria. So, as it turns out, Buddha himself took the lives of millions during his lifetime and could surely not go unpunished into oblivion.

This is why I am not worried about how I have maliciously slaughtered hundreds of honey bees and roaches.

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Wednesday, July 27th, 2005
8:05 pm - Holy Ivy!
So today I was weeding my ... "garden." I put it in quotations because it has not been managed for about 11 years, and is consequently entirely overrun by weeds, with not a domesticated plant within 100 yards. Yesterday, I tried to weed it out by simply putting on thick gloves and pulling the roots out by the stems. I had made what I thought was good headway, but my hands were sore from pulling, so I used a shovel, today. That is when I learned that about an inch below the surface, there is a network of roots so thick that there wasn't even space for dirt. LiterallY!

Needless to say, it takes a long time to get rid of all the thousands of little roots, but doesn't take much focused thought. Therefore, I was free to consider all kinds of crazy crap.

While I was mocking (quite maliciously) the weeds who were soon to die, it occurred to me that species with long lives cannot exist, because the things with short lives will simply out-evolve and destroy or replace them. Then I started thinking of ways that humans could possibly have evolved (since we take forever to become sexually mature), and I came up with this:

Plantlife on Earth has been controlling evolution since the dawn of mobile species!
That's right, those seemingly docile things have been locked in a slow warfare since before double-celled organisms! How do they fight? With animals, of course. For hundreds of millions of years, they had always used animals very directly: make them eat opposing plants, or make them eat animals controlled by opposing plants. The equivalent of an atom bomb, though, came when vegetable and fruit plants allied to create a sentient species that favored them above the seemingly invincible weeds and was smart enough to battle the weeds effectively, but dumb enough to do it for no real gain. That's us. Every chance we get, we replace the weeds that were previously winning the war with the ones we eat and consider to be "beautiful."

How do they control us? Well, obviously they control the way our sex cells pick half of our genes such that certain trends are created and everything that eats their fruit or leaves is shaped into a weapon to be used against the other side. So this whole time, we have been mere slaves to the plants whom we presume to have mastered.

current mood: Crasy!

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Tuesday, July 26th, 2005
7:43 pm - Did you know that...
One Earth Year is not 365 days. Nor is it even 365¼ years.
One of Earth's Orbits around the Sun is equal to 365.241* of its rotations about its own axis.

That is to say, Earth does not have a leap year every 4 years; every 100 years, there is no leap year. The exception to the exception is that every 1000 years, there is a leap year.
Our calander is set up such that a the year 1 A.D. was also the first year of the cycle so that every year that is a multiple of 4 is a leap year except those that mark the turning of a century, unless they also mark a millenium, in which case they observe a leap day as usual.

So the years: 4, 8, 12, 16, 20, 24, 28, etc... all have leap days, except
100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, 700, 800, 900, 1100, 1200, etc. do not.
The years 1000, 2000, 3000, 4000, etc. have had and will have leap days.

Bored yet? I sure as hell am.

*Possibly wrong, because I did the calculations myself based on my knowledge of years. Perhaps there are even more obscurities that take eons. Who knows?

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Wednesday, July 20th, 2005
5:28 pm - I seriously had something I meant to say.
Since I can't remember what I really had to say, I'll just say:

Aren't shelled creatures incredible? Especially Hermit Crabs. How the hell does something like that evolve? Supposing that Hermit Crabs have the same ancestor as shelled crabs (which is generally supposed), when and how did they lose their own shells? Sure, it's great for them now that they don't have to waste a bazillion of their bodies' minerals on making shells, but how did they get to that point? Macro-mutations don't happen, and as long as they had their own shells to begin with, there would be no advantage to lugging around an extra shell stolen from some other deceased creature.

So what the heck?

Oh. The thing I meant to say at first was:
I just watched The Exorcist with Mariam. I was entirely unphased by it. I am alone in my house and don't feel the slightest tinge of fear. Then again, I usually don't. On the other hand, Mariam also appears to be unaffected. I expected a lot more from a movie so renowned for its scare-potential. The 6th Sense was scarier, for crying out loud. What a disappointment.
So why did my mother forbid my littlest sister from watching it? Maybe it was scarier back in 1973 when it was made. Now, it just seemed weird. It lacked a lot of the Scary movie tactics used nowadays, like an extreme lack of peripheral vision, sudden and frequent appearances of people from sides of the screen (accompanied by disonant chords), bizzare and sinister portrayal of everyday objects and regular pictures, and incomprehensible flashes of freaky scenes (it had a couple, but not nearly as many as more recent films). I guess I am just spoiled by the psychological expertise of modern moviemakers, so the old tingly creepy hits of 30 years ago don't compare to the startling thrillers of today.

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12:57 am - Non-important stuff
Look! I failed some AP tests!
Comp Sci AB: 1
Envi Sci: 3
French Lang: 1
US Gov't: 4
Comp Gov't: 4
Calc BC: 4 (AB4)
Psych: 3
World Hist: 4

Just thought you all might want to know, so you can rub it in my face later the fact that I even had classes for those two.

Meanwhile, Harry Potter is an incredible phenomenon.
The fact that you all loved the first book when you read it in, like, 2nd grade makes you think that the entire series will be great. However, you've been growing up and maturing while Ms. Rowling's style has not.
Of course you're disappointed in The Half Blood Prince! It's the kind of book you'd read 10 years ago. If people started giving you books
intended for 2nd and 3rd graders, you'd look at them like they were complete idiots, because you're obviously too old for that kind of thing, and you'll be bored to tears by it.

Whereas you relish character development, varied plots, and suspense, children are quite content to have static characters, formulaic storylines, and predictability. Case in point: Power Rangers.
Sure, it was cool when you were a kid, but if you had to watch those crappy "martial arts" shows now, you'd puke on yourselves, even if you were wearing your favorite clothes.

So either start reading out of the adults' section, or stop complaining that your children's books don't adhere to generally accepted components of good writing.

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12:39 am - iLleGAl imMIgrAtIOn
Recently, Brian posted his views on illegal immigration, and a million people said what they think should be done about the problem.

What I noticed, though, was that although Brian had initially identified the problem as being the continual influx of additional people, peoples' suggestions on how to fix the problem all dealt with how to deal with those who are already here. No one said anything about remedying the situations that cause the mass immigration. It just seemed to me like trying to fix the problem of frequent migranes with a daily dose of advil instead of a reduction of stress.

Giving Welfare to illegal immigrants, for example, will not make anything better; Although, in the short run, it will improve conditions for the people who live here, it will also encourage them to have more children whom they already don't have time to raise properly for success, and make immigration to America even more appealing. This will not fill the rut that our low-income neighbors are currently stuck in; rather, it will simply expand the rut by adding more people to it and making taxpayers less willing to continue supporting services for the extended group.

The only solution of which I can think requires that we fundamentally transform the nations from which the immigrants come. If they lived in better conditions, they definately wouldn't make the extreme effort to come to America. The only way to fix things at the source, then, is to become Neo-Conservatives and join the crusade to spread Freedom and Democracy throughout the entire world.

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Tuesday, July 12th, 2005
8:43 pm - It's too hot these days
How come we don't spell "days" as "dais?" English must be a bitch to learn as a second.

Meanwhile, getting a job as a 17-year-old is as hard as staying cool outside. I put in applications at about 10 places, and not a single one has called back. Well, I am not expecting to have a job this summer, now, because I will be leaving for Berkeley soon, anyway.

In lieu of being hired, however, I have another option: there's a lot of old junk metal for me to cut into isolated bits (seperate all the different kinds of metal from eachother), and it's fun! The pay isn't too great, since recycling places are cheap-os, and my supply of work is highly limited, but at least I get to have fun hammering and cutting metal.

On the other hand, when I run out of work to do, I will still have plenty of video games to play and books to read (and scholarships to apply for), so it'll be alright. Not to mention Mariam to spend time with.

Uh-oh. I just killed a mosquitoe. That means they can get into the house now. ALright, that's all for me for now. I'll try to think up something more philosophical next time so that there's actually a bit of interestingness for you to think about, instead of pointless dribble like this one.


We're not in highschool anymore! Isn't it crazy?

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Thursday, June 23rd, 2005
1:47 am
Here's a bad idea:

Not setting a time to go to bed, but planning to shower before sleeping and do a set of situps and pushups before showering.
This is a guaranteed way to make sure you get no sleep. This is why I take long naps in the afternoon.

Ah, highschool. One thing I won't miss about it is getting up before the sun. Of course, that was worse when I biked, because then it was still, like, pitch black outside. But this still sucks.

Meanwhile, Pete is getting married on the 25th. Every single person that's been told has said "why so young?" He thinks it's funny.

Meanwhile, my mother doesn't seem to approve of any girls that we, her sons, pick out. Probably because she thinks we're perfect, and so nothing but perfection is good enough for us. I agree, and that's why I am happy. :)

Ain't I cute?

Or maybe disgustingly arrogant.

And now it's time for me to read until the adrenaline subsides.

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Wednesday, June 22nd, 2005
12:25 am - I'm late, I'm late!
So I guess I promised something about how religion is more logical than science. Well, here's something to try to irritate you science-lovers and get some sort of argument started:

Religions are very well reasoned because they are self-contained in their simple logic.

Science, on the other hand, is based on the idea that it can never be known for sure, and that everything is subject to radical change. It has been disproven and discarded many times. The basic rules for what makes something scientifically sound have even changed.

Many people have claimed that miracles are performed. I've heard many accounts myself, though not witnessed any.
Many non-religious people confess that things inexplicable by science have occurred. I've heard similar accounts from these people.

Which is easier to put faith in? A religion that explains everything, including the inexplicable as well as providing a meaning to life,
Or a philosophy full of self-admitted holes that is very unstable and could debase the entirety of morality?

current mood: sandoffish

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Tuesday, June 14th, 2005
11:27 pm - Yikes! Look what time it is!
I must've been sleeping for more than a week, because how else could I have not remembered to post anything for so long?

Plus, I don't really remember what day it is. (Yes, I know it's written for me right on this page.)

So anyway, rather than try to get you up to date on what has happened to me since I last posted (since you don't really care) I will just say this:

I didn't sleep on Sunday night. At all. So I was very sluggish the next day. Meanwhile, I need to clean the floors in my house. They are really filthy.

And now for something that sounds utterly ridiculous to many:
Christianity, and probably* all other major religions, are more well-reasoned and logical than the sum of Man's scientific research.
I shall surely elaborate on this some other time.

*I wouldn't know about the others, since I have not studied them religiously.

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Sunday, June 5th, 2005
11:31 pm - The World is Full of Bums
So I went to San Diego over the weekend to celebrate the birthday of Mariam's mother who is, incidentally, old enough to be the mother of my mother, and I had a lot of fun doing accounting work. It's really fun to put checks in order and then input all the numbers on them into a computer. Really. You should try it.

But it is fun to get paid. And to spend time lying lazily around watching movies with one's girlfriend.
So I enjoyed my trip very much, as I'd enjoy any trip with Mariam, so long as all involved remain in good health.

As an added bonus, when I got home, the electricians had finished, so the furniture was in its rightful place! Except that my bed was still completely buried in crap. So that took a while to clean up. And I still have to unpack. No matter. Here's the important part of this entry:

I was waiting at a corner of a street somewhere in East L.A., because my father was coming to get me but didn't know the way. Otherwise, I wouldn't have been waiting very long. Anyway, this guy comes over and asks me very quietly, as if he were divulging some dread secret, if I have a dollar to spare so he can get a soda, or even $2.25 so he can get some food. Feeling generous, I give him $5.00 and he tells me he'll help me look for my father's car (a totally useless thing to do, but I guess he had to feel like he'd earned his $5.00 somehow). So he keeps pointing to cars and asking "is that him?" which disrupts my reading, and I tell him "You don't have to help me -- I'll be okay. You go get something to eat." to which he replies "No, I wanna spot him!"
Several minutes later, he tires of this, and wanders a little way off. Still within eyesight, though. Then another man comes up to me and asks if I have fifty cents he could "borrow." I tell him, truthfully, that I gave my last 5 to the other guy, and explain that the man only asked for 2.50, so should be able to split it with him. The new man looked at me in disbelief and said "FIVE DOLLARS!?," and then I pointed him to the first beggar.
As I expected, the first guy refused to share with the second, claiming shamelessly that he had "already split it with that guy." pointing to a random other man. This is obviously a lie because:
A) The man had been trying to locate my father's car this whole time, and couldn't have split it, and
B) If he had had change enough to split the 5 into two equal parts, that would mean that he had had $2.50 the whole time, and never needed anything from me in the first place.

It made me think of the parable of the debtor. I was utterly disgusted, and refused to even listen to anything else that the first man said.

Here's the fun part: What would you have done in each man's position? Be honest!

current mood: Seriously Distressed

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Wednesday, June 1st, 2005
8:47 pm - Whoa, I am like, really late.
I preached the sermon on Sunday. It was improvised, since I hadn't finished it after starting at 11:00 the night before. I cried silently for at least 10 minutes when I finished, and I am not sure exactly why. That's what was pressing that other day.

Mekko asked me recently "why don't you two just get married already." And since we had been talking about Mr. Jones previously, my answer was "because he'd have to get divorced first." Of course, Mekko was talking about Mariam because

Mariam is the greatest!

Speaking of Mekko, he's about to lose a lot of money (up to a dollar!) in Texas Hold 'em, 'cause the master's in da houze.

Poker is much more fun when there's money on the line, even if it is play money (nickels are play money)

Hitch hiker's Guide to the Galaxy sucked as a movie. I'm sure the book is 100 times better. If it hadn't been for the awesome context in which I watched the movie, I would have been unhappy after seeing it. The best seat in the house is helpful.

La la di da. So my group is probably going to fail oue French project because these silly folks didn't write down their phone numbers when I told them to, and they have parents who treat them like 1st graders. Oh well. I only need a C in the class, anyway.

Decathlon isn't looking to good. Looks like a mostly girl team, and those never work out. Not nearly enough competitiveness to go around. Not to mention the unproductive week during each month. Oh, well. I won't be quitting *this* team.

That's all from your future supreme dictator today.
Piece!

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Sunday, May 29th, 2005
12:01 am - I really don't have time for this
There is an extremely pressing matter to which I must attend, yet I am, for some idiot reason, still updating.

Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy was a horrible movie. I think Star Wars 3 was written much better.

Chinese food is actually quite good, but somehow does not appeal to me when compared with, say, burgers.

Okay, enough wasting time. I'll tell you about my troubles tomorrow.

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Wednesday, May 25th, 2005
6:16 pm
The excitement I derive from slight changes in my house is an excellent demonstration of how sheltered I have been from change throughout my life.

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