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"If I drink concentrated OJ
Can I think Consolidated's okay?
It's not the band I hate, it's their fans
Three cans of water perverts me"

A couple lines from a Sloan tune called "Coax Me". You know who Consolidated is, right? Crassly self-righteous Industrial/Hip Hop act which makes a living by taking any political issue under the sun and tenaciously espousing the ultra extreme liberal view on that issue beyond all coherence. It's either their way or the highway for these arrogant and offensive poseurs. Anyway, I've always liked that line from Sloan.

I'm enjoying the new album. It has some er... rough spots here and there, but also some tunes that make great sense listening thoughtfully on my own. I don't know if the album is *mature* or what, but it's certainly not butch enough to be listening to while cruising around pedestrians in a car with the windows open, in contrast to previous Sloan albums. No offense to Jesse of course, but I just can't form an opinion on an album by listening to bits of songs in the car while friends are present. I've got to sit down with it on my own, with my sound system, listen to the whole thing, and approach it not expecting it to change my life, but just provide a pleasant backdrop to whatever it is I'm doing. The opinions come later.

Seeing the 'counselor' at UD: stepping across the hall to chat with Brother Rich.
Seeing the 'counselor' at UNT: making an appointment 13 days ahead of time for a specific 15 minute time slot, giving over my 'social' ('do you mean my Social Security Number?'), my email address, my phone number, and being told if I'm late I lose my appointment, just to ask a couple simple questions about a specialization and whether I can take this class or that one. Can you say 'Government School'?

Roswell is back. It apparently made the same migration to a new network that Buffy made. Now, you know I'm not a huge TV fan. I don't have cable, so things like TechTV, SpeedVision, FoxNEWS, SciFi, or others that I might watch are irrelevant. The only things I'll watch on my pathetic little speaker wire antenna if I'm around are the news, Nightline, Simpsons, Star Trek, Alias, and Roswell (now that I found it). Alias is turning into too much Kung-Fu + soap opera, so I may abandon that. Simpsons doesn't really come in well enough to understand dialogue. I have class during Enterprise. But I saw Roswell tonight. I don't know, something about that show is just right. Quality writing, sincere acting, a cerebral pacing, and it's not really a soap opera. In other news, last time I saw Enterprise the male chauvinist-type engineer guy was impregnated by some new species. He grew nipples and became irritable.

It did hit 90 degrees Tuesday, October 23rd here. That's 32.2 Celsius for those who don't have CyberCalc 1.2.

I got my statement on my trust fund. It hurts. It is down, waaaay down. It's down about 30% from where it might have been at this time without this recession and then 911. Of course, one could say that we don't really know economic tragedy in this country. My friend Eli, after coming to the states from Indonesia to study, found her family's money experiencing the effects of 600% inflation. And I can't complain too much, given my situation. I am still 41 years away from retirement after all. What about the people who depend completely on their investment income for living? What about the people who counted on having the money there for whatever reason? But it will come back--eventually (the NASDAQ Index has already risen above Sept. 10th levels, not that that's saying that much). In the meantime, yup, I'll have to tighten my own belt a little more.

XP is out. I truly don't know much about it. I haven't been keeping up with the PC industry lately. Here's what I do know: there's little to no chance I will be buying it before Unreal2 and Doom3 come out, and there's little to no chance I WON'T be buying it after they come out. It's not because I think Microsoft is an eeevil corporation necessarily, it's just that I don't need it. The X-Box is also on the way. Since DR went away ('oops, we have no business model'), I haven't kept up with the console industry either. My knowledge lately is limited to what I gleen from glances at magazines in the store. I don't actually have the requisite disposable cash, the time, or (sadly?) the enthusiasm to be into the PS2, X-Box, or the GameCube. I did see a commercial for a new racing game (system?) where you race along the sides of skyscrapers that looked really sharp.

I got some information on some of the good roads around the area. From Southwest Fort Worth, you take 20 to Benbrook, 377 to Granbury, then use various FM roads to head to Walnut Springs, Morgan, and all the way to Lakeside Village and Mesquite Creek. Stop and eat and relax at the water. Then follow Mesquite Creek down to FM 22, take that to Meridian and through the Meridian State Park, over to Cranfill's Gap. Cranfill's Gap up to Iredell on FM 1238 is supposed to be the zenith of the whole short tour, a twisty, fast, smooth road. Sign says 'STEEP GRADES SHARP CURVES NEXT 15 MILES'. Leave the cell phone at home, bring along some cookies, a couple friends, some inspirational music, and a camera and have a mini-vacation.

My bio prof sez: 'those who are least reproductively responsible will be numerically dominant in the future; the least phenotypically fit segment of the population has become the most reproductively fit through our unnatural selection, caused in part by inadvertently encouraging people to generate more and more progeny in an effort to maintain welfare benefits...' OK then, I agree that the welfare system of old is a screwy system--pay people not to work and they won't work. And I can also agree that some have no concept of reproductive responsibility--from crack whores to welfare molls, from slutty teenage bitches to beer-blasted date-rapin' frat boys. But bio prof also favors limits placed on reproduction, a la the Chinese government. Mandatory abortions, total lack of privacy, the primacy of the government over its people... As much as I say parenting should be a licensed vocation (i.e. you can't provide financially and emotionally for a child, you don't get a license) sometimes, I really dont mean it when the application of that is what goes on in China.

Wow, nice new engine designs coming down the pipe. Variable displacement and compression motorcycle engines, a production W-8 from Volkswagen. Direct injection two stroke tech. The V8 Drysdale GP bike engine. Pneumatic valves or even electronic valve actuation. Etc. It's nice to see folks pushing the envelope for the 21st Century.

Did you know? a lump of C-4 plastic explosive the size of a bar of Zest soap is enough to level an entire busy metropolitan bus station?

Internet taxes are coming. The executive order of '98 preventing them only put off the inevitable. The gov is a money-makin' machine, ain't it? More ways to separate us from our money. Meanwhile, there's a commercial for some tech company in which they mention 'in the future, this little card, carried on your person, will contain information on all your DNA'... as if that's a some wonderful ideal we should all be looking forward to.

How about this loophole? A Mexican family migrates to the US illegally. Soon after, the mother gives birth to a child. Boom, child is automatically a citizen, and so are parents and all brothers and sisters, granted all the rights (and priveledges and free rides) that go along with US citizenship. How should those people immigrating legally and going through the full process of becoming a citizen feel about that?

The bike pic for today is here, five women on five different '01 600cc sportbikes.