Well then... It would appear that I'm still here. Oh well. Time to retire the ol' Slashdot journal. If you all want to keep up on me, you can find me Here (pops, and beware of pop-ups, unless you're a good person and use Firefox). That's about it.
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I'm taking a year off to sort out some stuff.
As I can, I might post comments here at
Hopefully, all will go as well as can be expected, and I'll be back in January of 2006 with a new outlook on things, a new base of operations, and a new lease on life.
To all Slashdotters: You guys are one of the two most interesting Net communities I've been a part of (the other being Fark), and have provided me with insight and amusment beyond count. Flame wars, intelligent discussion, politics, and one of the broadest cross-sections of geekdom I've ever found. You are as diverse under the banner of Nerd as we all are under the banner of Humanity. Thanks for the last four years, you guys and gals.
gmhowell: At a time when even the smallest bit of support counted, you showed up with the goods. I wish you good luck in all you do, George, and thanks for doing something as trivial as reading and commenting on this journal. It means the world to me that someone on a site as big as this would pay attention to the drivel I tend to spew. You rock, man.
Derreck: What can I say, man. This will be my Nerd Legacy for the next year, if it even counts for much of one at all. Here's to boozing it up late nights in Hawk Run, making Linux go, and pointing me in this direction in general. You rock, man.
Believe it or not, I'm actually gonna miss this Asylum...
The end of one adventure is just the doorway to the next one. So don't say goodbye, just say Good Journey. Because the Journey doesn't end here... -- Yeah, I paraphrased Masters of the Universe. Dork alert...
Not a good thing for a Firefighter to type in for an entry title, is it?
But seriously. After getting a good reccomendation, today I stumbled in to the Mozilla FireFox universe, and already I think I'm in love.
For the last two years, I've preached the joys of Opera. Well, I think I'm done with it. No more plain old Mozilla, no more Konquerer, no more Nautilus, and MOST CERTAINLY NO MORE IE.
From the word go, it was a breeze. Installation handled itself. No worrying about dependancies, getting the right RPM package, nothing like that. It set itself up, imported my Mozilla settings, and plopped me on my home page (currently Fark). Immediately it noticed that Fark was running a Flash advertisment, and kindly asked me if I wanted to go get the plug-in.
I've tried to get the plug-in working on my own before, but to no avail. Sucks, really, because I've been having so many successes in the Linux world as of late (mostly out of necessity). But FireFox, it happily sucked down the plug-in, installed it, and reloaded the page. ROCK!
Themes and Extension managment is easy as hell, too. I've downloaded the IE viewer extension, and so far, every "Designed for IE" page has loaded up like a charm. I like the Walnut theme as well. Nice, easy on the eyes, and fits in with my choses desktop images (5 desktops, images from Digital Blasphemy) really well. I like the woodsy images found on DB, and the walnut blends right in.
Bookmark managment was a little funky for me to get used to in the first minute or two, but it's now as simple as dragging the favorites icon from the addy bar over to my bookmark toolbar, renaming it, reloading it, and riding off into the sunset.
As I'm writing this, I haven't even scratched the surface as to the features this thing has. Haven't started to use the tabs yet. Pop-up blocking is pretty much automatic from the first time you run it, and alerts you if you want to make customizations on the fly, so I'm not too worried about trying to break it. Password managers aren't really my thing, so bollocks to it.
You know, I just realized that I'm sounding more and more like my boss, who's a Welshman from the UK. "Bollocks to it," "Bob's your Uncle, Fannie's your Aunt," "in the loo," "take the lorry..." I've assimilated so many British mannerisms thanks to him...
But anyway, if you're running Linux, I think you'll like FireFox. If you're running Windows, JUMK IT, run Linux, and get FireFox. Or just get FireFox for Windows if that's easier for you...
Yep, been a while since I wrote anything. News since my last post:
Jill is no more. She's a stupid, selfish and naive girl, and is no longer worth my time.
I'm talking to Liza again, which is good.
I've purchased and read both Dancing Barefoot and Just A Geek by our own Wil Wheaton. Drooling fan-boy thoughts aside, these are excellent books with heartfelt, funny, and sometimes sad stories from Wil's life and career. I HIGHLY reccomend that you all pick them up and read them, several times over.
Work has seriously picked up. Doing the theatre thing as well as DJing at my favorite bar three nights a week. Not a bad gig, really. I get paid to watch movies and drink beer. Excellent!
Forced to run Linux due to computer issues, but it's turned out pretty good so far! Mandrake 9.2 is pretty OK for what I want it to do. The only thing is reconfiguring the sound module, which I really don't have time for right now. Oh well, I'll probably just upgrade to MDK 10 and let Aurora handle it...
That's about it for now, I'll update again later on this weekend. It's good to be back, though. For sure!
You're all gonna hate me, but...
Yep. It's back.
Jill's single, and this time, I'm in the right place at the right time...
Been a while since I've opined, I know. I've been a busy boy since my last entry. But I digress.
Some of you might remember my "Geek In Love" series of entries. Probably all of you who read them stood up, pointed, and laughed at my inane romantic ramblings. Oh well, that's your right as free-thinking humans. But me? I'm a hopeless romantic, doomed to the sappy existance of believing in love and persuing it to the ends of the Earth.
Or more specifically, about an hour and a half south of my home.
Recently, I met a girl named Cassi. She's smart, cute as a button, has one of the most disarming smiles I've ever seen, and loves Hockey, specifically my beloved Pittsburgh Penguins. A sweetheart to the core, but a bitch when she has to be (though not to me). Monday, I finally got to meet her in person.
I'm really starting to like this girl. We hit the mall for dinner, and spent the rest of the "date" sitting in her car, chain smoking cigarettes and talking about random stuff. Not your traditional date, I know. But for two people meeting for the first time, I'd call it at least a positive step. For an hour or so, we just gabbed on and on about stuff, like Chuck E. Cheese, going to college, and just a wee bit of personal stuff. At one point, I was saying something about how Chuck E. Cheese sucks these days thanks to the utter collapse of the Arcade industry. And then, I made the fatal mistake of looking over at her.
She was sitting slouched down in the driver's seat, curled up on her side, looking at me and smiling. At that point, the sappy romantic in me took over. I shut up almost mid sentance, forgot what I was talking about, and immediately melted. She'd disarmed me in under three seconds, a feat not duplicated since the day I first heard a certain girl sing to me.
Now, we're planning date number two, this time with more than just pizza and sitting in a car polluting our lungs. I sense good things from this one, and will be taking it a bit slower this go-round. Hopefully, it'll pan out into something really special. Lord knows I need that in my life right now. So, fellow Slashdotters, say hello to the new candidate, Cassi...
First of all, I should say that I'm going by the numbers as they appear on the Internet Movie Database World All-Time Box Office Charts. With that said, let's get down to business.
The final numbers are in on TTT, and guess what. They're astounding! TTT surpassed FotR by about $60,000,000. Not bad. And with RotK set to drop in a little over a month, I think it's safe to say that Peter Jackson, Wingnut Films and New Line Cinema have struck gold. Here are the numbers:
LotR - FotR: $860,200,000
LotR - TTT: $918,600,000
Total To Date: $1,778,800,000
Not bad for two out of three movies that cost a grand total of about $300,000,000 to make. That gives us a total profit of $1,478,800,000. Damn, that's some serious cash.
Now, consider when RotK drops next month. The trend established by TTT just might continue. TTT outgrossed FotR, will RotK surpass TTT? Shake up your magic 8-ball and the result will most likely be "Signs Point To Yes." Here's the reasoning behind that.
FotR came along and proved that the LotR story could be sucessfully brought to life on the silver screen, something that even Tolkien himself said could probably never be done. Of course, he didn't live to see the era of CGI special effects, so what he said in context of time period was somewhat true. It grossed quite a bit of cash, and the world was introduced visually to the world of Middle-earth for the first time in a live-action film. People's jaws dropped (including my own), and the hype was layed for TTT before FotR could finish its theatrical run.
Thanks to FotR, people lined up in droves to see the story continue with TTT. Despite all the creative liberties taken by Jackson (example: the Ring was never taken to Osgiliath as it was in the film, probably just an excuse to show the ancient capitol of Gondor), it was a huge hit. Now we have Frodo and Sam ever closer to Mordor and thier goal, The Cracks of Doom. We have Aragorn ready to reclaim the high kingship of the Two Kingdoms (Arnor (what is now Eriador, including the Shire) and Gondor). We've seen the Battle of the Hornburg, only to know that it will most certainly be surpassed in scope by the Battle of the Pellanor Fields in RotK.
In short, we have even more hype building for RotK than did for TTT after FotR (sick of me using acronyms yet?)...
Hype led to TTT outgrossing FotR. Hype will most likely lead to RotK outgrossing both of its siblings. Even if it tanks and only makes half of what FotR made, LotR hits the two billion dollar mark, and that, my friends, isn't too damn shabby at all. Let's compare it to cinema's other heavy hitters:
The Star Wars Franchise: Total gross over 5 films - $3,474,900,000. Now, mind you, there are two factors making this figure so damn huge and unable to represent the true scope of the Star Wars series' total haul. First of all, Episodes IV, V and VI were released between 1977 and 1983, so the value of the dollar wasn't as much as it is now. Also, for it to hit $3.5 Billion, it took 5 films, two of which are universally known as over-hyped pieces of total crap. Seriously, fans of the old school Trilogy HATED the newer films, and that includes me. Honestly, I can't believe I wasted the money to go see Episode II. It was such shit. I should have stayed at the tattoo shop I worked at and made money instead. Chances are Star Wars fans will hold out hope for Episode III, but I doubt it'll be much better.
There are also rumors going around that good old Steven Spielberg may take the reigns of the franchise and produce the third Trilogy, which Lucas said he doesn't want to make...
The Jurassic Park Franchise: Total gross over 3 films - $1,896,900,000. The first movie rocked and was more or less true to the original Crichton novel. The second one sucked and took way too much creative liberty in bringing dinos stateside. The third one was total crap, evident by it's meager take compared to the first two. I hear rumors of a fourth film, but it probably won't help this series' financial status when compared to LotR. Also, in three films, it only beats LotR by about $100,000,000. That'll easily be smashed once RotK drops.
So, apart from the tremendous (yet undeserved, thanks to the two newest, crappy installments) success of the Star Wars series, it looks like LotR is destined to be one of the biggest franchises of all time.
Keep in mind, too, that there is a TON of material for more films to be made about the world of Arda (the Elvish name for Middle-earth and other parts of the world), including The Hobbit, The Silmarillion, and Unfinished Tales. Insane, isn't it? Frankly, I hope they do decide to make more Middle-earth flicks. Wouldn't you kill to see some of the epic battles from the War of Wrath? How would you envision the destruction of Beleriand? We all know how impressive Durin's Bane (the Balrog) was in FotR, would your mind explode to see seven of them going head to head with the Noldor in he Nierniath Armodiad? How about an expansion of the Dagor Bargolath (shown briefly in the opening scenes of FotR)? The Siege of Barad Dur? Or maybe you'ld prefer the downfall of Neumenor? The possibilities are endless...
You know where I'll be at Midnight on December 17th. I'll be contributing my hard-earned dough to the numbers above...
Remember when you were growing up and first heard the ultimate question? It was _the_ toughest test any man could take. Do you pick Hollywood Fluff or the Middle-American Girl Next Door? The logical answer to this question is simple: Mary Ann every time. Ginger is about as fake and lifeless as the world she represents. Mary Ann is totally bangin', and has got a good head on her shoulders. There's a reason she dug on the Professor, you know...
So there. Question answered. What comes next? The real test of finding the perfect test is which two women in entertainment today, occupying the same show, have the most conflicting styles and personalities? Which two best represent both extremes of thier spectrum? Without a doubt, the perfect two women can be seen every Saturday night at 9pm...
Raven and Starfire from Teen Titans.
OK. Now that we've got the whole thing about animation pervs out of our systems and can control our incessant snickering, let's get down to business. Even though our two new girls aren't live-action, it doesn't escape the fundamental similarity of the shows: That's Entertainment. Stick with me here, you'll like this...
For a minute, let's forget that these ink-n-paint hotties have wild superpowers, the fact that Star's an alien and Raven's a half-demon, etc. Super hero shit is cool, but that's not what we're talking about here. It all boils down to personality. All-America Girl vs Hollywood in our original question. Two exact opposites. Raven and Starfire themselves are polar opposites, as shown well in the episode where the Puppetmaster forces them to switch bodies.
Heh. Switch bodies. How cool would that be? *snicker snicker* Anyway, since it's my blog, I'm going to lead of with who I'd pick in a heartbeat...
Raven - Yep, I'd have to go with Raven. To me, Raven represents the greatest challange. Someone who is locked up in emotions, and whose emotions have her locked up as well. Not one for the standard fare at all. Dark, somewhat mysterious, somewhat tormented in subtle ways. Highly intelligent, inclined to speak her mind. Jet black hair and the wardrobe to match. Her inner child a princess still wanting to be rescued by a prince charming, but years of emotional roller coasters have pushed it down and nearly out of sight.
The Gothic Goddess ^,^
And then, there's her mirror:
Starfire - The Well-meaning Innocent. Her emotions have no restraint at most times. Innocent and gullible, easily foold and confused, but by no means anywhere near dense, though she has some moments. Believes herself a princess, and always willing to make new friends. Trusting to a fault. Happy Go Lucky. Her imagination is boundless and often whimsical. A love of all things cute. Desires not a prince, but a knight in shining armor. Always a happy ending in her world...
So, which does one choose? Do you like the ease (not THAT kind of ease, pervs) and happiness of Starfire? Or the challange of reaching someone darker and deeper like Raven?
First of all, The Encyclopedia of Arda downright kicks ass. It's a must-bookmark page that any Tolkien fan would love. Check it out at length if you have some time to kill.
Anyway, I was thinking (which I do too much of to begin with) about how Tolkien holds the tales of Ea in conjunction with our modern Earth, looking at one as the history of the other rather than just a totally fictional world.
Well, if this is true, then some pretty serious happenings would have had to go down as far as landmass is concerned, and in a relatively short time. Tolkien stops his chronicles in the Fourth Age, and assumes that, as history has progressed to the present, roughly 6000 years have passed since the events of the War of the Ring and the subsequent reign of Aragorn II Elessar.
If Middle-earth were to evolve into the modern world, then some serious geographical changes would have to happen in just six millennia. This is assuming that the length of our standard year is roughly the same as one Year of the Sun in Tolkien's world.
Arda itself has undergone some serious geography changes on its own, and strangely enough, all before the end of its very short First Age. And they're by no means slow and steady, they happened suddenly and violently. War with Morgoth scarred the land on a few occasions, including the utter destruction of Beleriand. The Undying Lands were seperated from the mortal realm in the Bending of the World, and the creation and destruction of Neumenor.
Anyone care to offer up any thoughts? Where in our modern world is Middle-earth? What changes have happened since then that make it fit where you put it?
Hey, at least I'm trying to stimulate interesting conversation. Can't fault me for that...
/total fanboy geek mode
The last few days have been nothing short of great. The tickets for A Perfect Circle have arrived, and Liza and I have been spending alot of time together. In fact, she just spent the night with me last night, which is always a good thing.
And to make matters better, I even took care of her Christmas present this past Thursday, and I have The John Miller Program to thank for it. This week, he had Marc and Victoria Weinberg (?sp) on the show, the people who make Ballsy, Bitchy and Badass Bear. As always, they are a great interview, and they gave away a bear to the first viewer who called in during the show. And it just so happened that the viewer in question is me.
So, I told Victoria that I wanted a Bitchy Bear, since it's a gift for Liza. John said he'd pick up the shipping tab, which is totally cool with me. Now all I have to do is resist the urge to A)Tell Liza what I got her, and B)Give it to her before Christmas. Shouldn't be too rough, but hey. It's me. I'm bound to give in sooner or later. Ha ha ha ha.
Anywho, I'm off to do random fun stuff. It certainly is nice to be a geek, but not only that, a geek with a healthy social life, and an even healthier love life. Life is good right now, and I feel like it's only going to get better...
Again, another far-flung entry into my Slashdot journal. And wouldn't you know it, it's just a more detailed rehash of an entry from my blog. Oh well.
So, what has good old E-Rock-23 (aka Eric) been doing since late July? Well, it's been a very odd time for me. After I wrote that entry, a few things happened. I ditched Dana, she was becoming an obsessive pain in the ass. And the next night, I ran into Liza, who was with Mike. It was then that it hit me...
I'm in love with her.
Thus began my latest escapades in the world of romance (if you can call it that). You see, Liza always saw me as something of a dog, just out to get laid. She thought I couldn't be different from that. Well, I was out to prove her wrong, and I think I've succeeded to a point.
One of the first things I did was write her a letter. To deliver it, I walked to her house at 2am and stuck it in her car's door handle. It got a great response.
A little further down the road (aka this past Monday) I got the bright idea to do the letter thing again. I did it, and this time enlisted the help of my friend Ron in delivering it. Hey, it's cold out there now, and walking in the frigid air, just to deliver a letter and catch a cold, isn't quite that bright. So, he gave me a ride to her house so I could deliver it. But he also did something else for me that night: gave me the info I needed for tickets to see A Perfect Circle...
I couldn't sleep that night, and Tuesday morning I hustled in order to get tickets. After making a small sacrifice, I managed to get two tickets to the show. So, by 10am, I had quite the day planned: Liza had by then seen and read the letter, but had no clue I had the tickets. So, when she finally called me, I told her I had a surprise for her. She came up, and I told her the story of how I came upon tickets to go see one of her favorite bands. This made her incredibly happy, let me tell you...
So now, I'm left with two more problems, but they don't have to be solved til November. These problems both involve money, unfortunately. One is getting money to be able to show her around Pittsburgh, my collegiate home, during the day of the show, and booking a room at a hotel/motel/bed and breakfast for after the show, since we'll both be tired afterwards. That might be expensive, but honestly, I don't care.
She's very close to getting rid of Mike, and has expressed a great interest in being with me for a very long time. So, in the end, this will most likely be worth the effort. I've just got to see it through, and keep up the sweet guy gestures that I've been using. She wants to know the real me. Well, she's finding out the real me, step by step.
And who is the real me? Well, the real me is a sappy, romantic teddy bear of a guy with a soft spot for love. Sick, isn't it? Ha ha ha ha...
Update: I just got off the phone with Liza. Last night, she dumped Mike. Let the fun begin
Haven't updated this particular journal in a while. And since I'm awake, for some reason, at 7:55am, I might as well give it a go.
What is it about me? Yeah, granted, I'm a good guy with half-decent looks. But come on! I'm attracting all the wrong ladies recently. Kathy's bad enough, given her status. But now her sister Candi wants in on the action as well. Normally, I wouldn't complain about a pair of hot as hell sisters both wanting me. But damn! It's such an odd situation.
To make matters worse, the flirting between Erina and I is getting more and more frequent these days. For those who don't know who she is, she's my ex faince, the one who nearly drove me to self-destruction over four years ago. After what we went through, it's a miracle we even talk now, let alone flirt with each other...
The band is going well, though we haven't had much along the lines of gigs lately. It appears that bar owners are addicted to DJs and don't want to have live music anymore. WTF?!? How the hell are we supposed to have a local music scene when bar owners who have stages would rather have someone sit in a booth and spin rediculous music that all sounds the same?
Other than that, things are well. We're writing new material at a good clip, and should be ready to release a new album sometime next year. I've begun to write lyrics myself to contribute to the cause, but I still seem to be stuck in a "love song" rut - not a good thing for a metal/hard rock band, really. Soon I expect to be out of it, though. A song came together last week that should exorcise those lovey-dovey demons.
Wednesday night I secured use of the fire hall for a massive birthday/wedding party in early November. This is gonna be KILLER! My buddy's band, as well as mine, are scheduled to rock the building down, and we have alot of friends coming in from all over the place, including New York and Deleware. John and Breann are getting married on Halloween, plus their birthdays are October 27th and November 4th, respectively. With mine on November 5th, we decided to take the following Saturday, the 8th, and throw a huge bash.
Back to the female situation for a moment. Liza is a girl I've known for the past two and a half years. Our relationship has been on and off during that time, and up until now, it wasn't really anything more than just friends with benefits. But now, my heart has once again gotten the better of me, and I fear I might be falling in love with her. Given my current female situation, it's a welcome respite. Problem is, she's found this new guy, Mike.
But there's something I know about him that she doesn't. I know a few of his ex girlfriends, and they've all told me the same story: For the first few weeks/months, everything starts out great. But then, he gets controlling, not allowing them to associate with anyone else, not even other female friends. This isn't good. I want to tell her what I've heard, but I can't because I'm afraid she'll pass it off as jealousy or something. Just another part of the joy of being me, I suppose...
Derreck, you suck. Ha ha. Caught ya looking...
I'm really starting to wonder about this laptop I've been on since the main machine's power supply died. When I go to load certain pages in Opera, it crashes. Now, this is the same version I have on the other desktop box downstairs. Hell, it came from the same install file. Why it crashes on the laptop and not the desktop is beyond me. Guess I can blame Microshaft for creating the swiss cheese of operating systems, which in turn makes the software made for it (especially third-party software like Opera) unstable as well...
Hmmm. That's it. There isn't anymore...
Peace to those who know. Those who don't, go blow. Outtie.
No, this isn't about Jill. Nothing will be about Jill anymore. She's made her bed, she can lay in it. My days of being the "KiSA" are over.
But then again, this is the sequel. And no, I'm not in love, at least not yet. This time, I have a few to pick from. Isn't that some shit? So, let's take inventory and see what good ol' E-Rock has in store for him.
Kathy #1: Yep, there are two Kathy's. Odd. But anyway, this is the Kathy I've mentioned before in this journal. She's the married one (let the scorn-fest begin). For the record, she came after me, and if you could see what she looks like, you'ld probably give in, too.
Kathy #2: Kathy #2 is a girl from my past, sort of. She had a crush on me 10 years ago when we were kids, and I guess it's survived. She's single now (after 3 years with a complete dumbass), and she's also expressed interest in (get this!) a threesome with me and Kathy #1! Bizzare! She's alot like Kathy #1 in the looks department as well: 5' even, petite like there's no tomorrow.
Dana: Dana is younger (18), and has had a crush on me since she first met me, when she was 14. Now that she's old enough to do something about it, she tracked me down and found me this past Saturday at a town festival. She's hella hot, but hella clueless as well, which isn't quite a turn on for me. She shags like a minx, though, which is always a bonus.
Christy: By far my #1 choice. Christy is the total package, at least as far as my tastes go. She recently split up with a buddy of mine (which complicates things a bit). So far, things are going really well with Christy, we've been e-mailing back and forth and get together to talk when we can. I really like her son, too. He's a cool kid, and wants to be a fireman like me. Aha! A chance to teach something important to the next generation! Good deal...
And finally, one that I wouldn't have guessed would be an option at all...
Erina: Yes, Erina. My ex-fiance, and quite frankly, the worst relationship I ever had. Why she's showing a renewed interest in me, I have no clue. But, thankfully, the only thing she apparently wants is to climb in the sack with me once she's single (she's still seeing the guy she replaced me with). Talk about odd as hell. Oh well. I'd hit it again just for old time's sake, but I don't think she'll figure into any of my long term plans.
And there you have it. The sequel to "A Geek In Love" has begun. Will Eric get the girl he wants (Christy)? Will he get the threesome (with the two Kathy's)? Will he settle for Dana as a last resort? And, will Erina yet again drive Eric to borderline insanity? More to come, friends...
Time for some shameless self-promotion! And wouldn't you know it, it's about this very journal in a way...
What's the cool thing right now? Look on Tripod, look on Geocities, look on all the free hosting sites that 'normal' folks (and a TON of teenagers) will use for their sites. One glance tells you what the hot Internet craze of the moment is:
For a while now,
Middle column: Life.
My graphics are my own, except for link graphics (including one to
So, I invite you to check out my blog, since it'll be updated alot more than this journal. This journal will live, though, just not as much. Heh.
Click Here To Visit Rancho Relaxo
The events of the last three days have sparked an urge within me to get a bit retroactive.
It's time for the Eric I used to be to come back. The only difference: This time, I'm seven years wiser.
Back In Black...