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User Journal

Journal Journal: Back once again with the Renegade Master...

Finally managed to get Moveable Type up and going.

This is the tentative location of my new blog, as I'm finding it more and more useful than this typical /. journal stuff.... I like having direct access to my files, thank you very much.

Is anybody gonna read it? Who the hell knows. If you've actually followed me here, I congratulate you... And apologize that I don't update this site nearly enough. Hopefully this new blog will get more attention, though.

It's shoddy right now: green-on-black in the true ebbomega.com fashion, no real amount of images to decorate, not a whole lot of deviation from the typical MT default settings. That may change. It may not. As it sits I'm using version 2.64, which is apparently obsolete but it's what I had when I started a lot of this stuff and seems to be relatively secure and bloat-free. I'll let you decide that.

Wireless Networking

Journal Journal: Now transmitting using Recycled Airborne Electrons

They told me it was buggy. They told me it was inconvenient. Damn were they right.

But I got it going. I now am using Wireless LAN on my Linuxbox.

My hacking skills have been getting rusty as of lately, basically because my main computer (and as such the one I've been able to screw around with) has been out of commission. I've been stuck on dialup networking and a vehement disregard to the concept of wiring up the house with ethernet on the part of the owners of this house. So my hacking has taken a severe turn for the worse.

  BUT ALAS! It's over now! Due to my relocation to my parents' basement, I've since been without decent internet in my room. However, with a little help from ndiswrapper and a lot of tinkering and asking the right questions (You'd be surprised how just doing that can solve your problems) I managed to get it working.

What I'd like to do now is just go over the Stupid Mistakes (tm) I made in the process here, in hopes that someone else may learn from them.

Stupid Mistake #1: Trying to install it on debian woody.

Just don't bother. Not worth it.

I originally wanted this to work on my router, but I soon put an end to all that tomfoolery. After attempt #3 at getting anything to want to talk to each other, I gave up... mostly because I found an RPM for fedora core, to which I said to myself... "Wait... my main box runs Fedora Core...." (Oh yeah, I've become a Red Hat user since I last spoke of computers... apt-rpm is very much so indeed my friend).

So last night I began the venture of installing it onto fedora core. However, I couldn't find the goddamn driver I needed (ndiswrapper requires you to get the win32 driver). So, me being the smart guy, I hopped on the net and downloaded it from Linksys' Website.

Everything worked fine except.... couldn't find the network. Now, through experience of running my Dad's laptop and getting _that_ set up on the wlan (_really_ easy) I knew that it wasn't on the router's side or even on the router's configuration side as I knew, for a fact, that there are TWO accessible unencrypted access points in this neighborhood. But neither was being picked up.

So I looked and googled and tried different combinations of words, asked all the linux gurus I could find and they all didn't know what was up.... So finally I join up and post a question to the ndiswrapper mailing list.

8 hours later, still no response, starting to get ansy, and I give up to a point. But then I find the actual cd that came with the nic, and I think to myself.... "I wonder...."

Stupid Mistake #2: Just use the drivers you're given.

MD5sum the two drivers, they're completely different. So I try again with the driver on the CD.... THIS time everything works happy. I can connect to the network and even ping my access point! Wunderbar!

So I ifconfig wlan0 up.

Still no network. No ipaddress. Nothing.

# dhclient wlan0

So, this is a bit better. I can get an ip address, but as soon as I disconnect and pull down eth0, I get no network. Can't access the internet at all. Can, interestingly enough, ping my access point still.

Stupid Mistake #3: Make sure you take it step by step and isolate the problem before jumping to the conclusion that it doesn't work. And don't go so long next time without exercising your l33t netw0rking skillz.

Finally I clue in that I should dhclient my wlan0 interface when eth0 is _NOT_ up and connected, and maybe it'll actually set my router as my gateway.

All is well now, as you can see. I'm talking to you from no connection to the internet save the air. Beautious thing. Once I get this downstairs and lodged into its new home, I'm going to have to adjust a bootscript or two though so I can get this thing nice and happily automated.

It's funny.  Laugh.

Journal Journal: It was in the year they finally immanentized the Eschaton

In the year 2003, the world came closer than it has ever been to biological war, all because of some obscure country in the Middle East called Iraq.

The Rolling Stones announced a concert immediately one week after July 23, 2003 to announce the end of the latest weapon in biological warfare (Leprosy Anthrax Pi, codename SARS) the largest rock concert in the history of rock 'n' roll, featuring The Guess Who, Justin Timberlake, AC/DC and Clark Kent and His Supermen are schedule pending. In the meantime, the 5 major countries on the UN Security Council are patting themselves on the back for a job well done in the middle east, despite any evidence that they did anything.

Time to see a master magician or a master con-man - the two are the same - convince a bunch of acidheads to run away from their own shadows. That or the final battle between good and evil, with Horus on both sides.

The Internet

Journal Journal: Soon to be no more....

Well, it seems I'm finally buckling all of this "You must have an inane page where you seem to believe your opinion is valid or something like that" stuff and deciding to move these occasional insights and mentions of my geeky surroundings to my Personal Webpage and am attempting to get Moveable Type running sos this Slashdot journal becomes obsolete.

I may still post here occasionally to get some of the geekiness out of my system (For instance, my continuing chronicles of trying to get the Personal Iris up and running may still be documented here (I got a tranceiver to hook up the AUI to CAT-5, but it's not being too nice about it...).

So yeah, apart from gaining employment, I'm also working on getting this SGI machine working as well as getting the blog running, although it'll be interesting to see how this works on the basis that the configuration that I've got it set for on my home box is going to be a lot more different than my dedicated T1 server, since they decided to use Win2K server and I'm using apache on top of Mandrake 9.1 here. So that'll be fun. Oh well.


Journal Journal: How many flavours do _YOU_ have in your room?

Alright. So I've been settling down with my computers lately. Debian is running perfectly on my router and I've been getting minimal problems thus far. I figure if I'm going to get any decent version of Debian then I probably need to get sid or some other unstable distro in order to get any decent updated stuff... so basically leave it at: Debian's main problem for me now is its stable tree is pretty bad for updating. Unstable would be cool but I'd much rather not bother with it.

In the meantime I've been playing with Drake 9.1.... beautiful distro if you ask me. I haven't had a single crash on this machine yet. And I mean on _ANYTHING_. I had a bit of trouble getting TuxNES to work, but I'll worry about that later (When I actually get my joypad hooked up to this baby and start using it.)

I like Mandrake. Mandrake si teh rox0r. Now I need to get a job and start paying for it.

Moving on, I've recently decided that I'd like to start hooking up decent UNIX machines of different varieties just so I can get the hang of the different flavours and maybe understand a thing or two more about UNIX in general and broaden what I already know about Linux.

So I tried to install FreeBSD on my laptop that is currently running a dual boot with Linux and the Win98 that came with it (I only really use that for running Impulse Tracker because DosEmu does weird things with visual stuff and SoundTracker for Linux does _not_ work too well... so I have a slight dependency on DOS. But I'm still technically not Windows Dependent. *sigh* About time for me to get an Amiga to play with if you ask me). It failed, but I think I can probably give it another whirl. I ultimately want to get it running so that I can then go on to other UNIX varieties. I have a Personal Iris I intend on running IRIX on, and another laptop on its way that I'm going to set aside as the OpenBSD guinea pig.

I'm unfortunately bound though to a Serial-based administering of the IRIX on the Iris, and I'm lacking the necessary AUI Ethernet capabilities that I'm going to need to get it on the net. In the meantime, though, I'm going to keep busy with trying to figure out if IRIX is on there or if I need to somehow get a cracked copy or something like that.

I wonder how pleased SGI would be to send me some archaic version of IRIX that'll install on a Personal Iris....

Anyways. Once I figure out all that I need to for this box I'll get Openssh on her, and hopefully then just run it entirely remotely.

In the meantime I think I'm gonna focus on this FreeBSD series of headaches (wee PCMCIA incompatibility... trying to do a floppy boot no less...).

So, once I get my second laptop and get all my OS's up and running, I'm gonna have Debian, Mandrake, IRIX, FreeBSD and OpenBSD.

After that, who knows. Sparcstation, maybe. Then I'll save up for a G4 and get OSX.

Christ, I'm going Unix-happy. Soon I'm gonna be an old man passing out change saying to people "Here kid. Go get yourself a real operating system"



Journal Journal: Today's word of the day....

Today's word of the day is "SUCK"

However, not the traditional sense (as in the verb: to suck).

No, suck is only today's word of the day if it is used as a noun.

As in:

Thank God Affleck's acting wasn't bad in the new Daredevil movie, because if it was, it would just add insult to injury with the writing being a teeming mass of SUCK!!!!

Note the extra points given for putting the word entirely with capital letters, the sequence of exclamation marks (This is not being sarcastic, so the use of a numeric "1" afterwards would _not_ be appropriate) and preceeding with the words "teeming mass of".

Use it wisely. Remember... There's no point in building your vocabulary when you can simply reuse old words to illustrate your point.


Journal Journal: No turning back now... I'm a Linux user....

In June of 2002 (for those who are hip and trendy, that's "twenty-oh-two"), I had all the components necessary to build a new desktop computer.

I had a cruddy VGA monitor, A 2-MB Paradise Video card, A Realtek 8139 Ethernet card, a A7V266-E Asus Motherboard, 256MB of DDR RAM, A 300W Power supply with case, a Creative 52x CD-ROM and a Maxtor 80GB hard drive. A pretty decent system with crap graphics.

On this system, I decided to install Linux.

I've played around on a Solaris system at school, as well as a Linux-driven MUD, so my UNIX experience was minimal... no use of GUIs or anything like that. Closest thing I had was I played around for about 5 minutes on my girlfriend's Red Hat box.

So I decide, what the hey, and install Linux. After a few failed attempts (see below) I had Mandrake on it.

My laptop, my other computer, a IBM Thinkpad i1400, had alway run Windows. It was getting a bit old (I bought it about 4 years ago) and the CD-ROM had ceased working. Finally, one day, about 4 months into my honeymoon with Linux, my Laptop died with no recovery. It is still, to this day, dead, until I can borrow someone's external CD-ROM drive and install some OS on it... possibly putting Windows back on it, maybe not.

I'm not a gamer, never really have been. Besides, when I game, I more often than not do it on a console...

After a couple of hardware upgrades, most notably a DVD-ROM, CD Burner and a more-than-decent video setup, I have a really nice system that's (as of a couple days ago) running Mandrake 9.1beta/RC1.

I really don't see myself going back to primarily using Windows really ever again. I have no use for it. With more and more games coming out for Linux, higher advances with WINE and VMware, OpenOffice, Mozilla, PySoulseek, XMMS and Xine, I have pretty much all the applications I ever used on Windows. And I have some light daemons running servers I never could without heavy programs like Bulletproof G6-FTP Server... Better system monitors, and most happily of all, I only really reboot my computer to install/test out new distributions of linux... My uptime now is 3 days because that was when I put 9.1 overtop of 9.0. I probably won't be restarting again until 9.1 comes fully out of beta and I just want to fresh-overhaul the system...

Plus, this is one of the main things I like about Linux, is it's handling of command line. If I have a harsh seizure of X (which happens from time to time, I will admit it...) then I can just cntrl-alt-f1, open up a new console and just kill either whatever process is seizing X or X itself... in any case, fixing the problem. I have control over my system in its entirety...

I wouldn't yet call myself a Linux expert, or an admin. I mean, sheesh, I can't even get GNOME 2 to work on a Debian box... But the Linux operating system gives me the option to learn more the more I use it... The learning curve is pretty steep and long, but for me, after about 4 or 5 months of playing around with Linux and trying to get it going all happily, I'm happy to say that I have a good enough understanding of it that I can probably deal with anything that I need to.

Anybody who says Linux is dead for the desktop seriously has no clue what they're talking about. So far, Linux can do anything that Windows can, and more... And the best part is that I'm using all this software that equates to about $300 worth of Microsoft products, all for free. Not to mention all the service pack upgrades I would need that are also provided for free (RPMfind.net is my friend).

Anyways. Keep up the good work, Linux community. I'm enjoying this stuff ever so much... Possibly if I ever get decent enough a programmer I could play around with this stuff and maybe actually contribute... (Next time I'll be sure to get into the beta race before the package list gets frozen, too...)


Journal Journal: Finally a success story or two... But still debian-less

Well, I managed to figure out my major Debian problem.

Plug N Play has been turned on this entire time.

At this point I'd like to tip my hat off to Mandrake for being able to deal with that so incredibly smoothly. It's a great company. I recommend giving them money and supporting their software. I know I'm a bit of an anti-consumerist but this is a company that's been in the red ever since its inception and they make a good quality product that I'd rather not see go down in flames... I'm unemployed ATM so I'm not going to be contributing anytime wholly soon... but as soon as I get a decent amount of money I'm probably going to order myself a boxed version... or maybe I'll just wait until 9.1 comes out of beta first... but still... big plans on this side to support them.

So I go over to my friend's to pick up a P75 backend machine with which I can throw Debian on and use as a router. I haven't yet sat down and hacked around with IPtables yet so it's not up and running... plus I apparently am going to have a headache or two with my ISA 3-com Etherlink III card that I'm going to use for my internal connection.

So I get the install up and running, I upgrade to the 2.4 kernel (2.4.18-bf2.4 I believe) and when I reboot I suddenly have trouble with recognizing the Etherlink card. Thankfully, I have 2 NICs in this system so I just throw it onto my realtek card and modprobe that one... problem solved... no problems whatsoever. So now I've got a running backend debian box that does... well... nothing... but soon I'm gonna get that NIC running and then figure out IPtables and all shall be good.

Feeling fairly comfortable about my Debian skills thus far, I decide to see if I could overhaul my Drake system and throw Debian on there...

So I go through it all and still no network. I set up ifconfig all great and everything... but it just refuses to activate itself. ifconfig /dev/eth0 up just refused to work. I search my error message on google (using lynx and my backend machine) and I finally come up to a site basically explaining to me what's wrong... I can't find an IRQ port... so do I have to set them manually, I ask myself?

So I reboot, hop into BIOS and look around... Waaaait a minute... my Pnp status was on!

Well, now, isn't this quaint? I kill it, reinstall debian, an lo and behold... it works perfectly.

Don't even need to load the drivers. Everything happens automagically all of a sudden.

So next order of business, upgrade all the stuff I need to (kernel, XFree86, Gnome, etc.). So I install gnome 2.2

BIG problems now. For some fucked up reason, Gnome 2.2 just refused to work... I got some weird window problem that just left me to wonder.... wtf?

So I'm supposing I'd really like to hop back over to Gnome 2.0 but had no clue where to find it.

After a lot of ramshackle-business with Gnome I finally give up and reinstall Drake... Which, as usual, works smoothly... Eventually I'm gonna get this debian install to work, goddamnit!


Journal Journal: Yesterday (Thursday) was weird...

I saw the fnords today. I told that to my girlfriend and she asked me what a fnord was. I told her it would take three hits of acid or some of the great writing of Robert Anton Wilson to understand what I'm talking about...

On top of that, flipping through the newspaper, it was bloody eerie with the unusually high number of placements of "23" throughout the headlines... and that's not even considering the date....

Days like this make me extremely paranoid.


Journal Journal: My Linux chronicles.

Maybe some of you Debian/nix hackers could help me out here... but first, my gripe.

(If you want to know about my current situation, skip ahead to Install 7)

In case anybody reading this hasn't been paying any attention to the qualms all over /. about how much of a bitchy install debian happens to be (I concur... I much prefer Drake's install... Fuck, I prefer drake over any Windows install I've seen even... Even if I'm just talking simplicity's sake...), I'm about to add my own.

First time I ever tried to install Linux after being an avid Win98 user for a good number of years courtesy my now-defunct laptop, I tried Debian.

I managed to actually install it. Problem was I had no Ethernet drivers because it didn't recognize my card off the bat and I had no clue what a chipset was at the time...

Now, I'll fill you in... It's a D-Link 538TX card with a RTL8139 chipset (in hindsight, that knowledge wouldn't have been much help as I soon learned that I needed the driver 8139too...

So, I didn't install any ethernet drivers.

And to make matters worse, debian decided to ignore me after it installed my core.

So I got my Debian hacker friend Mike to come take a look at it. Running through a series of commands I didn't understand ("I did a bash loop actually") he found my ethernet driver and got my network up and working.

Then he apt-got X and tried to run it. After a failed configuration attempt (didn't help that a POS video card and VGA Graphics monitor... so nothing really looked right...) he recommended that I say fuck it and play around with Mandrake, and only when I get a bit better at understanding Linux and the general makeup of my computer should I venture into the wonderful depths of debian.

So I go through a series of installs in order to get things running on my computer.

Install 1: Mandrake.
IT WORKED! Got everything together, and X worked fine and everything... played around on KDE for a bit and decided it was pretty nice. Then I started up Licq and used it pretty religiously for a period of about a day.

Then I started to get pissed when stuff started crashing...

I said to myself "The fuck? I though this was supposed to be able to walk and chew bubblegum at the same time?"

So I try to install a couple of packages using tarballs.

Stuff just stops working all over.

So I figure... well, let's start over.

Install 2: Mandrake, take 2.
I reinstall, this time actually flipping through packages in the package distribution... and I start looking around at ftp servers and apache... which I ultimately set up... One of the main reasons I wanted linux was its easy-to-use and ssh'ing.

I forego the actual install-setup of openssh and end up downloading the tarball. Can't get it running at all.

So Mike comes over one day, and I ask him to look at it for a sec.

He introduces me to rpmfind.net.

n00b mistake number 2 fixed courtesy Mike again.

I also switch over to GNOME, which I still use today and have zero qualms about. The walking and chewing bubblegum is zero problem with this baby of a window manager. A couple of problems with Nautilus still kicked around but I got accustomed to just enoying Galeon for my filebrowsing purposes, and for file management I got real cozy with console stuff.

Now, I buy myself a new monitor. High Quality flatscreen NEC 19" Accusync... quite the nice piece of machinery. Turns out though that my video card is just as much a bottleneck as my shitty screen was. So I end up getting a friends ATI AGP card. I make the switch and I'm still stuck with shit-for-resolution.

However, The actual install of the new agp card.

I looked through drake's video card library (albeit not very thoroughly) and my card wasn't there. Doh. So I decide "I've heard that the new Red Hat is actually better than Drake lately". and it seemed to have support for my video card.

Install 3: Red Hat
Install went about as smoothly as Mandrake's did with the exception that it didn't go looking too hard for my hardware. To the point that all it found was a hard drive, video card, and CDROM.

Which left my sound card and ethernet forgotten.

Red Hat was very pretty but I am still a fan of Drake's menu system, just because they're well organized and the configuration tools are extremely easy to use. And Drake just seemed to appreciate my hardware a lot more.

So after playing around trying to find my config files, I finally decide fuck it and give Debian another shot.

Install 4: Debian
Didn't even finish the install here before I just plain gave up and didn't want to bother with it just yet.

Install 5: Mandrake take 3.
So apparently Mandrake _did_ have support for my video card. Idiot me. Anyways. I get it all running, still problems with some of the video-based stuff, and I don't expect to ever get my divx's working on this computer, and that'll be why I install Win2k in the future, right? Xine wasn't happy, mplayer wasn't happy, fuck it.

But it basically got what I needed done... e-mail, web, icq and the like...

I also soon change video cards over to a decently sized-RAM video card (Voodoo 3 which I'm currently using) and a lot of my major problems regarding my workspace size are solved.

Now, keep in mind, to this point in time, I'd been using Mandrake 8.2. I finally managed to get a burnt copy of 9.0 together but haven't had much of an excuse to install it...

Then I get a DVD-ROM.

So, in goes the DVD-ROM and the first disk I put in it is the Mandrake 9 install disk.

Install 6: Mandrake 9!
Oh boy. Ohhhhhhhhhh boy.

Install was the same familiar install and pretty much everything else involved with it was the same as 8.2

Except Gnome 2 was actually involved here.

For those who don't know, Gnome 2 is slick. It is insanely easy to use and a shitload more stable than 1.whateverwaswith8.2 ever was.

And Xine got working easily. Ogle was a bit more difficult and required a bit more tweakage, but nothing too hard.

And before long, I was watching DVDs and divx's in no time.

I lost complete point of use for Windows short of Gaming and running Impulse Tracker (Which I might be able to do on my laptop anyways).

Anyways, now that I think I have most of this Linux stuff figured out from a very high-level user-end (If you people think that Windows is easier to use, I honestly recommend Mandrake), my friend Ryan decides to ask me to help him put together a back-end machine for serving and then use another one of his machines he was going to clear out to become a new router.

We decided: What would be a good OS to be a router. He wanted to use Red Hat as he used that for all his other Linux boxes. After recommending Debian, we both decide that we'll give it a whirl.

So we do the floppy disk install of vanilla debian (Woody 3.0r1) and everything seems to go perfectly. No issues whatsoever.

With the new confidence that being able to actually make it through the debian install gives me, I decide to try to install debian onto my computer.

Now, I figured out where things went wrong the first time around and I get all the drivers/chipsets I need to and start to work at it.

Install 7: Debian, take 2 (3? Either way...)
So I get a lot farther this time. I actually managed to set up a good solid system running on Debian. Only problems are X is a bitch to configure to the right settings (didn't want my resolution at all) and my network still didn't work despite my insistence that it had a working ethernet driver... (kept looking for a modem for some strange reason) And for some reason it just didn't want to connect automatically using dhcp or anything like that... which Mandrake does without any complaints.

So I decide to go back to Mandrake for now. Luckily, when I installed, I put it on a brand new partition and left my drake partition alone... so now I try to go back to my drake partition, but it turns out Lilo didn't like my original idea of offering a dual boot (one from hda1 and one from hda3).

So I tell it screw off and reinstall-upgrade Mandrake...

So now I'm going to leave my Debian partition alone until I can figure out generally what went horribly, horribly wrong with my debian install.. so that I can actually get it set up...

Although I don't know if I'd want debian on my main system. On a firewall, yes, on a server, yes, but Mandrake seems to be really nice about my peripherals for Multimedia... Only problems I can't resolve right now is getting Pyslsk working for drake and I'd really rather enjoy using the apt-get system.

But for now I'm happy with drake for all my computing needs. Not to mention I'm learning a shitload about Linux doing this...

It's funny.  Laugh.

Journal Journal: Everybody, Lie down on the floor and keep calm.

Today was a day of lessons.

My day began by popping in the second disc of Moulin Rouge that I rented so my parents (mostly my mother) could see it, and finding a third easter-egg I never saw before that... It's basically Baz Luhrman [sic?] explaining to the Narcoleptic Argentinian what his motivation is behind the Roxanne Tango. Then I got to see the entire un-story-driven dance sequence for that number.

Lesson 1) Sting fucking Rules. Narcoleptic Argentinians and Ewan MacGregor fucking Rule when they're singing a duet surrounding Sting's music.

So, after playing around with the plentiful features on the second disc of the Moulin Rouge DVD, I get ready and hop down to the ferries, and get to hear some good old-style FM tunes that I adore as much as my mother does, although her adoration is moreso for nostalgia's sake than anything else. Take a Walk on the Wild Side is one of her favorite songs from back before I had even ovulated and she was still working at a Radio station in Montreal. I think I inherited her love for it or something.

Lesson 2) My mother has awesome taste in music. Heck, she even liked the crazy techno-y Fatboy Slim Can-Can in Moulin Rouge.

So, my ferry ride over consisted of me thumbing through the pages of the Illuminatus! Trilogy, which prompted a series of KLF songs to get stuck in my head. Especially when they started talking about the JAMs.

Lesson 3) KLF makes a lot more sense after reading even a hundred or so pages into the Illuminatus! Trilogy.

So I hop off the ferry, end up on a cramped Sardine Can/Bus. Rather than do the traditionally annoying feat of staying standing till we hit that mall in North Van so that people can get off and I can sit down, I sit down on the floor on top of my bag and continue reading about the JAMs. A person thoroughly reminding me of Jeff/"Dr. Doom"/Chris(Ninjaboy)'s hetero life-mate makes a semi-humorous comment reminiscent of something Jeff would say musing over my prior seating arrangement once I sit down beside him in an actual seat.

Lesson 4) After you've met a critical mass of people in this city, it seems like you've met most of the people in this city.

So on continues my voyage on to the skytrain, in which I proceed towards school so I can work on my CMPT 250 assignment in the quiet of the Linux lab. On the skytrain, about 25 feet away from the typical stop-point (just far enough so that I'm next to the platform, but one end of the train sticks out so the doors cannot open) of Sperling station, the train stops abruptly because some guy jumped on the tracks to avoid getting a ticket for not having a fare or something like this. I shrug this off and enjoy a short 5-second moment of entertainment as we watch the guy rushing through the middle partition separating us from the other track, and skycops running after him with flashlights. The amusement continues as he rushes up the skytrain westward towards Brentwood. Pretty stupid if you ask me, because if he went the other way, he'd only need to go about 100 metres before he was at ground level and as such could then cross Lougheed Highway and disappear into the woods where the Skycops would never find him again, and thus he would be free and clear... of course, until they positively ID him. But boy was I happy to have my bag with me, because...

Lesson 5) When on a skytrain, always have a book or something to keep you company in case the skytrain stops/breaks down/gets involved in international conspiracy and needs to be "delayed" for some reason or another.

By Minute 15, I became convinced that the guy running from the skycops was actually an ex-assassin for the Illuminati and was running from the cops who were acting under orders from above, and he knew they were about to disembowel him and he needed to catch up with the JAMs and save his soul before he would end up an "example" in Mad Dog County Jail. Either that or Fernando Poo is acting up again. In any case, best not to look directly at his face for fear of your life. Doesn't matter anyways, since he's probably been pushed off the tracks by now... ("He fell... Honest!")

By Minute 30, I realize that the cute couple over in the corner are actually prime Operatives for the JAMs and that these doors aren't opening any time soon until they are somehow destroyed "accidentally" and it pushes me that it might be a good idea to get off the train before that happens, but I think I'm alright as long as this Mason sitting next to me stays on, unless she's willing to die for the better cause or something like that. Thankfully, we're all saved at the zero hour by some 10-year-old kids who think it might be really "cool" to unlock the doors and open them up, giving the JAMs free reign to leave whenever they want, and thus the message comes up over the speakers at that exact moment that the "incident" has been Resolved/Pushed off the tracks/Shot in the head between the eyes for good measure, and we will be moving "shortly".

Lesson 6) When trapped in an unopening skytrain car with a few dozen people for the better part of an hour, the Illuminatus! Trilogy is _NOT_ the best book to be reading.

I switch reading materials from this mindfuck of consciousness and proceed to do my CMPT 250 homework on the train. No big problem there. Then I start munching on the chips and Barq's I happen to have sitting in my bag (Yay me!) and gaping at how incredibly simple this assignment is (A 2 to 1 MUX???? WTF? Didn't I do these two months ago? Heck, didn't I do these two semesters ago?)

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