Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Another Quiz result

Some random browsing found this quiz - Which Firefly character are you.

Your results:
You are Dr. Simon Tam (Ship Medic)
Medicine and physical healing are your game,
but wooing women isn't a strong suit.

Click here to take the "Which Serenity character are you?" quiz...

It turned out I had a tie for the doctor, the captain and the mechanic. I'm not quite sure how the quiz broke the tie (I had a look at the source and it seems to be an artifact of the sorting algorithm). I don't really see myself as the captain, but there are aspects of the doctor and the mechanic I see in myself.

End Post
Writing time: 7 minutes (including examining the source code to work out how the tie was broken)
Time since last post: half a day
Current media: none

Tuesday, February 27, 2007



That is all.

End Post
Writing time: 10 seconds
Time since last post: one and a half days
Current media: none

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Sunday Night Musings

A quiet week this week. I spent perhaps a little more time getting to know my computer than I should have, and playing Mario Kart on my DS. Next week I shall try and limit the amount of time I spend sitting in front of the computer. That doesn't mean it won't be on, just I won't be actively using it. I just need to make sure I don't find more things with it to play with. For instance, tonight I found out that the mac comes with Apache and PHP preinstalled, and so of course had to get that up and working and play with it a bit.

Work is getting to be pretty much routine. I've done most of the ordinary lessons enough now that I don't really need to do much preparation any more. Kids lessons are also no longer a major hassle, just some of the kids. For some classes I wish I had one of those adjustable gates parents use to block doorways because there is one kid who is a bit precocious and whenever something doesn't go her way she runs out of the room. The gate would be handy in preventing that.

Over the last week or two I've had some training for some of the specialised classes that Nova teaches, which have basically been 40 minute briefings on what the aims of the course are and what the lesson management plans (LMPs for those who use the things) look like. Then your on your own. I've yet to actually teach one of these classes, but we'll see how things go when I do.

I'm currently reading a book of short stories by Neil Gaiman. Most of them are pretty good. They're a bit different and are usually humorous. I particularly like the one where going out and giving presents each year is part of an eternal punishment for Santa Claus and the elves are his jailers. It's impressive what you can do with just 100 words.

I got a new game for my DS when I bought my computer. Mario Kart DS. It's pretty good, lots of fun, and so far there's always something new to try. In addition to all the different single player games, you can play online using a wireless internet connection. A pretty good challenge. I played a little bit last night and the result after 4 races was a three way tie.

Anyway, I should stop typing now as it is getting late and I haven't been sleeping much this week (too much messing around on the computer coupled with my housemates alarm clock going off early for my liking).

End Post
Writing time: 30 minute (including various distractions)
Time since last post: 4 days
Current media: silence

Wednesday, February 21, 2007


Yesterday I bought a new computer. A laptop. A Mac.

In the past I've been derisive of macs. This started at high school which from grades 8 to 10 had a bunch of old macs which were replaced with PCs in grade 11, which seemed to demonstrate the PC as much better. Then there were the fruity iMacs, which made the computer look like a toy.

But since then apple has come around. They got rid of the silly colours. They put out an impressive OS.

The biggest factor in getting me to consider a Mac is the iPod. 18 months ago I got an iPod and it worked great. iTunes just worked and it made listening to podcasts that much easier (on that note I have a ton of podcasts to catch up on).

The Mac is pretty good. I've had a few hiccups in getting used to the way the Mac does some things differently (e.g., installing programs) and the keyboard is a little different (although that is more likely because it is Japanese not because it is a Mac).

On the good side, setting up the Mac was a breeze. Every device I've tried with it has worked (iPod, cellphone, wireless keyboard), so I'm confident my headphone/mike will work when I plug that in as well. I also really like the remote control for the Mac, which makes it really easy to enjoy music and movies on the Mac if you want to use your computer as a media center, which is going to be one of its main uses.

Edit: I forgot perhaps the most unusual parts in the story of getting the Mac. The sales person I talked to to get the Mac recognised me. I initially thought it was just because I had been into the store a few times over the last few weeks looking at different computers. That wasn't it. She recognised me from the B-Trip, the bar I and a few friends go to on Monday nights. Of all the gin joints in all the world and all that.

End Post
Writing time: 28 minutes (I wanted to do some fact checking, but didn't use it)
Time since last post: 6 days
Current media: The Combat Information Center

Thursday, February 15, 2007

A Mushless Mind

I had my third Japanese lesson tonight. For the first time I left without my brain feeling like mush. I am taking this as a sign of progress.

I'm still having problems with vocab, but I can generally get the right category (e.g. I mix up breakfast with dinner).

Anyway, my Japanese is increasing rapidly (although that may just be a relative thing in that a little is much more than none) and let's hope it continues to do so.

End post
Writing time: 5 minutes
Time since last post: 2 days
Current media: The Games Season 1

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Twosteps forward, one step back

I think I may have messed something up. Not irrevocably, but a step backwards after several steps forward.

End Post
Writing time: 30 seconds
Time since last post: good question
Current media: Unsquare Dance by Dave Brubeck

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Scary Dream

I just woke up from a really scary dream (thank you alarm clock). The dream was that I had gone back to working at GE, which I think says enough.

End post
Writing time: 2 minutes
Time since last post: a day or so
Current media: none

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Mummy Yummy

A funny thing happened at my kids school yesterday. The kinder class is the only one where the parents (well, mothers, although I did see a father once) bring their children and pick them up. After the kinder class yesterday my feet were a bit smelly, so I sprayed on some deodorant onto my feet and torso in the tiny teacher's room (literally a cupboard). When I came back out to say goodbye to the kids and start getting ready for the next class the mothers were all "Wow, you smell really nice" and wanting to know what the fragrane was. Not exactly the response I was expecting, but a nice surprise.

End post
Writing time: 15 minutes
Time since last post: two hours or so
Current media: the end credits of Once Upon A Time In Mexico

Life continues

Life without a computer continues. I seem to be getting used to it. In fact at one point the thought "Maybe I won't even get a new computer" went through my head.

I have noticed I've become more sociable without a computer, both with my housemates and with other people. I've also been going through my DVD collection, and managed to hook one of my housemates on Firefly. All in all, life in Japan is good.

News from back home has not been so good. My uncle in law (Mum's brother in law) has apparently got a brain tumor, which is very uncool. Word is it's not going to be easy to get rid of. Given how last year went for this part of my family, this means the suckiness just keeps on coming.

Today I'm doing a shift swap so I have to work on what is normally my day off, but it's worth it because it gave me more time to spend with Mum while she was over here in January.

I haven't seen much in the news I want to comment on, but there was an editorial I want to quote later on (it's somewhat time independent so it can wait).

End post
Current media: The sounds of a housemate making breakfast
Writing time: 15 minutes or so (damn stylus)
Time since last post: A week or so