Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

wood

the pic of the wood pile is for you, hans
just a reminder that your coming for christmas,
get your chopping skills up to date

non-stop fun part 2





non-stop fun





Monday, April 28, 2008

Wow, People are Funny

Here is a post someone made on the Playstation GTA IV Forums

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I preordered GTA IV, I'm so pumped, its going to be awesome. The only thing I HATE is the drunk driving....is that supposed to show its fun or funny to drink and drive? Its obviously added as a fun factor to the game, this made me lose a ton of respect for Rockstar. Drunk driving is not cool at all, and shouldnt be promoted or seen as funny or fun,video games or not.

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Contradictary much?
It is like he is viewing blantant murdering as ok,
but drunk driving isn't ok. It is almost like he is saying,
because drunk driving is more accessible,
it should not be in the game,
but since murdering is hard for a person to do, it is ok.

GTA IV Commentary

The game GTA IV is coming out tomorrow. This is hands down the most violent game ever made in my opinion. I made a post on the Playstation GTA IV Forums to see what people would say in response. I post for you here, what people have replied.

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My Post
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Let me start off by saying a couple things. I am 20, soon to be 21. I am very very excited for this game, I can hardly wait for tomorrow to come so I can play. However, I think this game is absolutely ridiculous. There is a fine line between creative freedom within a "free" country, and what should be illegal. Now, I don't think they should ban this game, but I think everyone here will agree, this game is ridiculously violent. You can kill anyone, anytime, with nearly no penalty, hardly even a loading screen. Who cares if they take your ammunition and some money, it is quite easy to get more. This is ofcourse for gameplay reasons, and rightly so, otherwise everyone would be super cautious, and that isn't remotely what the game is about. I think what I am trying to say is, just think about it for a second. This about exactly how ridiculously violent this game is. The fact that it isn't AO is astonishing to me. More over, the fact that 90% or more of the gamestops will hardly stop a 12 year old from picking this game up is disgusting. Ultimately, I think there needs to be some laws put in place. Such as it is 100% illegal to buy this game without showing identity. This may be the case already, but it clearly isn't remotely enforced. I guess I'm kind of rambling now, but I just wanted to share the thought with you.

Also, I would really like to here what the kids younger than 17 have to say about this commentary, and their thoughts behind the violence in GTA IV.

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Replies
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All Grand Theft Auto's are violent. It's to be expected. And the fact that it isn't AO is because that would be equivilent to an XXX rated movie, and this game contains no genital nudity, only partial nudity which means women in thongs and whatnot.

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Well, it is a game called Grand Theft Auto. What else can you expect? I feel that the violence isn't any different from Call Of Duty 2, Call Of Duty 4, Stranglehold, Gears Of War (have you seen the headshots from this game?), and Halo 2 and 3.

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Get a clue!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! thats why there is a M for mature rating
There are no bad questions......Only bad answers.

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FAIL!!!!:smileytongue:

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If i had a kid below 18 i would let him play GTA all day jk

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huh? I think you need to be in the hannah montana forum! Because this is the GTA board!

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“If it bleeds, we can kill it.” - Arnold Schwarzenegger

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Even if that was a law, most kids have their parents drive them and go with them anyways so it still won't wtop much, i say just kick back and enjoy the GAME, there's reasons why you can do things like this in a GAME rather than in a real life scenario.

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so is this game anymore violent than any of the Saw movies? or many of the R rated horror movies coming out nowadays? the reason i make that comparison is because it is just as easy for kids to get into a R rated film than it is for kids to get a M rated game or a AO rated for that matter ever heard of ebay? and i say this knowing that everytime i have ever purchased a game from Gamestop i get carded and i'm 25, but i have NEVER been carded at Walmart...and not that it matters as most kids will get the game directly from their parents. i guess what i'm saying is, while i understand your point, this is far from the most violent entertainment todays kids will be experiencing and while you cant control everybody you can control your kids and make sure they do not play this game.

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(My Reply)

I believe what makes this far more violent than any movie or even game before it, including previous GTA's. Is because of choice. You can choose who and how to kill whenever you want. In a movie, you are an observer, not a puppeeter.
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Is this the future Jack Thomson?

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MAnhunt games are 1000x's worse imo.

So are other games, like Postal, or the game that you play Columbine, or 9-11 plane sim, JFK sims, etc.

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Eh, just enjoy the game, kids need their parents to get it anyways, let ppl play whatever they want, who cares

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Making laws to fix parents lack of parenting does not fix anything. If parents would take responsibility for their children's actions we woudn't need to have this disscusion. If you don't want your child to play these types of games then take it away. It's that simple. Stop making excuses for your lack of parenting, stop trying to be a friend to your child. My parents let me play M rated games when I was younger (28 now) but they also taught me the difference between the game and reality.

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I got the pre-order phone call from gamestop over the weekend and in their recorded message they say this game is rated M and to bring a photo ID when picking up your pre-order. What I've always appreciated about the GTA games is that do not shy away from the adult content as they are making a game for adults. The rating system works just fine it's up to the consumer to make a purchase decision for their own tastes. There is no excuse to uninformed in the information age.

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My Reply Earlier

I believe what makes this far more violent than any movie or even game before it, including previous GTA's. Is because of choice. You can choose who and how to kill whenever you want. In a movie, you are an observer, not a puppeeter.


A Response

good point, but if thats the case than most games are in the wrong because the character is always killing something or someone. and if this game does cause people to turn to violence in real life than i believe that is an issue that started with how they were raised or things happening in their life, not because the game "made them do it"

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Quit crying.

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i dont think it should be banned but i understand what your saying... they should put sections up.. in game stores to where YOU HAVE to be 17 to see the games or have a Parent with you...

yesterday i saw a 5 yearold FIVE!!!!!!!!! holding a copy of GTA LCS!!! i was like omg... thats messed up... i think sections should be established but not banning of games.

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I'm 16 years old and I'm mature enough to play this game. I know right from wrong. I see your point of view and where your coming from, but i don't think this game promotes violence in kids. If you feel the need to go out and violently attack innocent people then you have issues and serious problems no doubt. But playing a video game will not promote that. What would promote that is poor parenting, mental issues, etc. real stuff like that, not a video game.

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I am 15 years old, and am planning on picking the game up sooner or later. My parents are whining that it is too violent but I am going to either ride my bike to the mall or get one of my older friends to drive me. I think it is a great game, but I have never played any other GTA game before. I feel that I am mature enough to play it, because things like that don't really affect me at all. I think it is a whole bunch of crap about GTA and other games influencing the shootings at several schools. It is the severe mental problems that some kids have that drive them to do this, not a virtual world that is incredibly fun. Just because we shoot people then go home and do a hooker in a game doesn't mean we would do so in the real world :smileytongue:

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I don't think it's rediculous because the same things happen in real life. I live in Philadelphia, where our murder rate was the highest it had been in years and most of the murder cases are still unsolved. It's no different to see someone get gunned down in a video game when you can just go to your street corner and see the same thing happen to someone with no consequences for the gunman. The only thing I see that is rediculous is the hipocracy in this so-called "free" country. I'm 17 btw.

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Parents need to be PARENTS.

Like mine were. I grew up on violence. I own guns, earned by black belt and made Eagle in the Scouts. I played, and still play the most violent games I can get my hands on, and so will my kids.

A stupid thug is going to be a stupid thug regardless of GTA or not. When parents stop letting the tv be the babysitter, and start spending real time with their kids, teaching them what is right in life, then video game violence will be less of an issue that it is now.

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there is no problem with letting a minor play gta. i think the world is a little to PC now. it doesn't matter what your kid plays if you sit down and talk with him/her, spend time with them, and be a good parent by teaching your kids moral values, and teaching them what is right and what is wrong

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You all (especially the minors) seem to keep bringing up the fact that "parents need to be parents", but yet how many of you actually have children? I am a parent, and I feel that as a parent I should monitor what my children come in contact with, as a parent I should prohibit my children from developing a false sense of reality and promote educational programming and a healthy environment in which they are able to distinguish the difference between right and wrong. That is my job, and a game like this in no way helps the cause.

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Let me start off with I'm 14 years old, I hear where you are coming from with all this violance and stuff like that but you have to rememmber this is a game! This shouldn't get an AO rating just becuase of killing look at Saw I, II, and III, it's not that much diffrent than GTA, it's torture after torture. You don't see thier movie getting pulled of the shelves or theater. About the 90% of all gamestops selling to 12 year old kids, I really doubt that, they can easilly get caught! This game is made to have fun, and have relief and do stuff that you will not be able to do in real life! You have to be very and I mean very retarted to go out and try what you do in GTA. I hear where your coming from about the Identity, mybe they should becuase yea lots of 15, 16 year olds are getting this game because they look 18, 19 so I'm not going to argue about that point.

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In my opinion minors that have children shouldn't be playing video games...

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I've been playing GTA since I was 7 and I'm one of the only people in my grade that hasn't smoked weed. Ease up, tight-ass

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And i have been playing GTA likley since you were in diapers and I haven't killed anyone, that's not my point.

The more liberal our culture becomes with the content viewed by our children, the shorter the age of innocence, and the only outcome is a more perverse society. I for one am going to keep games like this fromn my children as long as i can. It can only help them.

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well sint up to the rating program to set the rating?

and besides the gov. contorls that so it wont make a diffrence no matter how many times people complain on news

about this game

first off the gov. said shooters r bad violent and can cause metal damage

and then later they create a game called americas army that is also the genre they r against

so theres nothing that canbe done about this game

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But you as a parent control what your child sees. The content has ratings for a reason

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And i have been playing GTA likley since you were in diapers and I haven't killed anyone, that's not my point.

The more liberal our culture becomes with the content viewed by our children, the shorter the age of innocence, and the only outcome is a more perverse society. I for one am going to keep games like this fromn my children as long as i can. It can only help them.


i think your making the right choice by not letting them play the game, i agree it can only help them. but i'm sure the main reason our culture is turning into the perverse society that it has become, is due to the internet and the easy instant access to everything that is "bad". not to say that video games are not helping the cause, but its deffinetly the lesser of the 2 evil's.


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Like FPS aren't? Like RPG aren't? We can kill can't we? Weather you think its for good or not, is kiling not killing?

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Eggzackly!

You, as a parent, feel that your kid is not ready for GTA. So....you don't let him play. It's just that simple.

The day you feel the kid is ready, you'll let him play, or once he moves out he'll get it himself.

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im only 14 but i will have to agree with you. but im pretty mature and dont plan on killing cops anytime soon. kids need parental consent to play this and if the parents think they arent ready, then they shouldnt be able to play it

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i think you need to get laid so bad

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meh. Your full of it. FAIL

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I myself am turning 16 May 2nd, and for the last 2 or so hours, Ive been on the Xbox forums (pardon the reference) repeating myself:

Age =/= Maturity

It would seem that there are alot of thick headed adults that automaticlly assume that anyone under the age of 18 shouldnt play the game. That is only correct to a certain extent. Under the age of 12 is ludacris, but a teenager from there on to age 17 (or 18, depending on state/country, ect) is acceptable UNDER the condition that they are mature...which is something people have been having trouble understanding.

Some teens cant handle the content, just as some people in their 20's or maybe older. The ESRB rating is a guideline, not a law, and for a reason. Unfortunately its up to the parent to decide if their child is mature enough. Yet many go by the lame philosophy that if it says '17/18 and up' that their child automaticlly cant handle it


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Good thread!

Im 14 and this is a big subject to swallow. To be honest, I don't think I should be getting this game. I suppose the damage has been done from previous games but still, this game is really not for people 14 and under. If you were around 10, I cant even understand the things that could be burned in your brain from hookers to the sickening sounds of car crashes to the swearing. I played Vice city when I was around 11 and Im perfectly fine but there are some kids that are directly affected by the violence and they get de-sensitized.

Now I know the difference between reality and video game but this new game is really realistic and some kids younger than 10 are going to be getting their hands on this. I am going to bet by GTA5 there is going to be alot of controversy and Rockstar is going to get in some deep trouble, and parents are going to be going nuts, maybe new laws and all that fun stuff. There is nothing you can do about it (other than not advertising it or asking for it under the counter, but thats just not gunna happen) even if it is illegal because kids can get their hands on anything nowadays. I guess just be smart and don't go on a killing spree and don't let kids play it. Whats worse; smoking cigarettes or playing grand theft auto.

Do you think manhunt is worse?

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First of all, I just want to say i respect your opinions as everyone has their own views of this game. Ill start off saying im only 15, and yes i will be buying this game (my parnets approve). First i dont want anyone saying my parents are bad and blah blah, they feel i am mature enough to handle it. I have had past GTA games too. I get straight A's in school (4.03 GPA :smileyvery-happy:) and was a a captain on the football team this year. I am positive everyone on here has seen everything in that game before. You will see violence and sexual scenes in about any movie now. The violence isn't that big of a thing. As long as you realize its JUST A GAME, and not try to act it out like a jackass, i see no problem in playing it. It gives you a chance to do things that you would never be able (and hoefully not want) to do. I think the system they have now is fine for selling M games. At all of the GS's around me, they wont let me buy anything without one of my parents there, and aparently i look a lot older than i really am because countless people thought i was a senior, not a freshman. It may be different at different stores, who knows. but yea, killing people in a game isnt that big of a thing. COD, Ghost Recon, etc. you are killing people and noone complains about it. I probably shouldnt be comparing them because theyre completely different, but it is only a game. Ill see you guys online.

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i agree

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Causes

How often is it that people fight for causes that they haven't been directly affected by. For example, advocated against violence after someone close has been murdered. Or woman against breast cancer, after they get it themselves. It seems people fight what is personal within their lives. If it reaches past their circle, they may care, but will not fight.

The Rape of the Lock : Quintessential Mock-Epic

Alexander Pope's Rape of the Lock, published in its final form in 1717, succeeds as a mock-epic for two reasons. The poem fits the mock-epic form, satisfies it criteria, specifically because of its effective satirization of Pope's time and culture. At the same time, the poem is able to successfully satirize early eighteenth-century values due to of its mock-epic form. Pope crafted the Rape of the Lock with extreme care; he chose the mock-epic for its ability to satirize, and was able to satirize so effectively because of his employment of the mock-epic.

Additionally, the Rape of the Lock would not be such a successful and timeless mock-epic if Pope hadn't so meticulously tuned the poem. Almost every line, indeed, almost every word, is culled from traditional epics and other popular literary works (Nicholson, 67). But Pope's lines have a dual role. Pope both plays off of the mock-epic form and, with the same lines, mocks his culture's values. The term "mock-epic" begins to assume new meanings.

Like other mock-epics, the Rape of the Lock both builds from and utilizes traditional epics to comment on Pope's society. The mock-epic tradition functions in two ways: to degrade the epic form by subjecting it to merely average content and, simultaneously, to elevate the poem's content to a heroic status (Rousseau, 3). The Rape of the Lock aggrandizes an otherwise average subject to a heroic stance while also tainting the traditional epic form with trivial, unheroic matters. Ironically, this elevation of the poem's content has a reverse effect, ultimately mocking and degrading its importance, as Pope intended.

To understand Pope's mockery of the epic, we must first understand the epic form. Who better to explain this than Pope himself? In June of 1713, Pope's "A Receit to Make an Epick Poem," was published in the Guardian (Pope, 25). In the essay, Pope outlines a formula for crafting a stereotypical epic. Pope writes, "throw all the Adventures you fancy into one Tale. Then take a Hero, whom you may chuse for the Sound of his Name, and put him into the midst of these Adventures" (Pope A Receit, 27). Pope continues, writing of the "manners" to "lay em all on a heap," and, of the machines, suggests "as many as you can use" (Pope A Receit, 27). As usual, Pope maintains his trademark wit and cynicism. Even so, Pope's recipe is remarkably apt. The epic form, as invented and refined by Homer, Virgil, and Milton, features a hero who, for twelve books (as Pope calls for), engages in an assortment of adventures involving mystical beings. Additionally, Tillotson points out that "Even in his serious epics Homer did not seem entirely serious," as Homer tended to mock both man and god by reversing their roles (Tillotson The Rape of, 117). Regardless, the mock-epic is a step removed from the epic through its degradation of the heroic form and elevation of the common.

For a more serious definition of the epic, we turn to Kinsley, who states: "The epic presents a hero who embodies in a preeminent way the values of his civilization and who engages in an action which enables him to reveal these values and on the outcome of which the fate of his civilization depends" (Kinsley, 2). This prescription applies to the mock-epic as well. In an article discussing the "Meaning of the Mock-Heroic," Edwards argues appreciation for the true value of the form, saying that we can get so caught up in the "disproportion" of content and form, that we can "miss the deep bearing of the works, to be a changing of the world and a celebration of that change, as of the writing that achieves it" (Edwards, 48). If Pope intended any meaning for the Rape of the Lock, it was to bring awareness to the ridiculous values of his period. The message is clear in the poem, and this is due to Pope's use of the mock-epic form, his choice of message, and his skill of relaying.

Richard Terry defines the mock-epic in his book, Mock-Heroic from Butler to Cowper:

[the mock-epic] is inherently a satiric form, intent on creating an effect of derision; and it works through the incongruity existing between a formal, heightened language and a trivial subject. [. . .] this heightened treatment of a subject is generally created by the importation of the style and the manner of epic poems. (Terry, 1)

This perfectly defines the Rape of the Lock. Pope derides his culture through the juxtaposition of language and subject matter. In "A Receit to Make an Epick Poem," Pope states the necessity that "the Conclusion of an Epick Poem be fortunate" (Pope A Receit, 27). Homer's Iliad and Odyssey, and Virgil's Aeneid all end happily for their respective heroes, though perhaps at the expense of their enemies. Pope, wisely following his own advice, likewise concludes the Rape of the Lock with a fortunate ending, writing, "This lock, the Muse shall consecrate to fame, / And mid'st the stars inscribe Belinda's name!" (Pope The Rape of, 5. 149-150). Pope's ending is just one example of how he mocks society through epic form, as well as mocks earlier literary works. A lock of hair is a ridiculous object to eternally memorialize. In perhaps an act of ultimate elevation, Pope has in effect degraded the perceived importance of a person's hair, more explicitly stated by Clarissa in Canto V. However, the context of this couplet is what truly sends the message. Pope's concluding couplet alludes to multiple great literary works, including those by Spenser, Cowley, and Virgil. Spenser, in his poem Amoretti, immortalizes his love in the "hevens" (Tillotson The Poems of, 212). Similarly, Virgil awards "Immortal Life" to Nisus and Euryalus in his Aeneid (Tillotson Poems of, 212). Here, as with the majority of the Rape of the Lock, Pope is very explicitly playing off of these authors lines. A lock of hair, if in any form could be worth immortalizing, is made all the more ridiculous in the context of the eternal inscription of true love or a eulogistic vow. In context, the lock's inscription results in readers laughing rather than revering. Pope effectively establishes a mock-epic image by simultaneously degrading the epic standard and elevating the common.

The epic form tradition is formed of a number of elements, as originally defined by Homer, Virgil, and Milton. The mock-epic, functioning as a sort of slant epic, incorporates these elements into its own form. The hero, the invocation of the muse, the journey into the underworld, the machinery, epic battles: the epic includes all of these elements, among others. The Rape of the Lock, continuing in the footsteps of the mock-epic form laid down by Boileau with his Le Lutrin and Garth with The Dispensary, adopts theses elements then adapts them to fit the mock form (Hunt, 15). The purpose of the mock-epic was to take the conventional elements of the epic form and not only twist them to be a mockery of the epic, but also use the inherent aspects of these conventions to make a statement.

However, not all elements of the epic were diluted by the mock form. Geoffrey Tillotson, in a collection of critical essays on the Rape of the Lock, writes that "the epic moral," in particular, is not diminished, but instead, "its seriousness is deepened" (Tillotson The Rape of, 120). Pope takes this to heart with the Rape of the Lock. The moral, as told by Clarissa in Canto V, is a harsh (though subtlety performed) criticism of Pope's culture. Pope concludes Clarissa's speech with, "Beauties in vain their pretty eyes may role; / Charms strike the sight, but merit wins the soul" (Pope, 5. 33-34). Pope uses the epic speech to relay his moral. Though the topic, the content, may be less than heroic, the moral is certainly significant, particularly to Pope's time. Pope uses the epic conventions for his own purposes. The epic moral, as an element of the epic form, is diluted by the normalcy of its content. The message within the epic moral, however, is elevated via the epic speech, and not just artificially either; Pope is serious. In this instance, unlike many if not all other elements of the mock-epic, the moral of the poem is maintains its intentionally dire, human leve. Pope wants us to truly understand the message of his poem. He does so with an exception of the mock-epic form: the epic moral elevates his moral, and leaves it there for consideration.

The remainder of the Rape of the Lock works in an opposite manner from the above exception. The traditional elements of the epic, like the hero or engines, serve in Pope's mock-epic to elevate the content so as to degrade it. We will look at the machinery then in turn at the hero of Pope's poem.

The machinery of the poem are the gods, goddess, deities, or angels that function to move the fable or action forward in an epic. For the Rape of the Lock, Pope chose, primarily, sylphs to be his machinery. As to why Pope chose sylphs, G. S. Rousseau has a theory. Rousseau writes that the sylph machinery "results from the subtle use of and reference to two recent discoveries--the telescope and microscope--that opened up new worlds of 'the small' and 'the large' to Pope and his contemporaries" (Rousseau, 9). John Dennis, criticizing Pope's machinery just a few years after the poem was published, explains the purpose of the machinery in the traditional epic: "Machines influence the Actions of their Poems; and some of those Machines endeavour'd to advance the Action of their respective Poem, and others of them endeavour'd to retard it" (Dennis, 56). However, as Dennis goes on to say, the machinery of Pope's poem is pointless: "there is no allegorical nor sensible Meaning in them; and for these Reasons they give no Instruction, make no Impression at all upon the Mind of a sensible Reader" (Dennis, 57). But as Rousseau explains, that is entirely the point: "The sylphs are of particular interest insofar as they illustrate Pope's epic reversal. Although they profess to guard Belinda, they are thoroughly inconsequential--protective nothings" (Rousseau, 4). Machinery in the epic is a big, influential, occasionally fate-driven and fate-driving force. Machinery in the mock-epic, or at least Pope's mock-epic, is precisely the opposite. Machinery, as with most other elements of the epic, is degraded and devalued in the mock-epic form. As opposed to the gods of the epic, who are concerned for themselves and for the fates of men, sylphs are concerned for Belinda's virginity equally as much as a "China jar" (Brooks, 27-28). The sylphs, all throughout the poem, try in to warn, persuade, and protect Belinda, which is their mission. However, the sylphs act in vain; they can do nothing to help her nor to hinder her. Mocking at Milton, Pope writes, "Ev'n then, before the fatal engine closed, / A wretched Sylph too fondly interposed; / Fate urged the shears, and cut the Sylph in twain / (But airy substance soon unites again)" (Pope, 3. 149-152). Only after she has lost her lock, does a gnome, Umbriel, actually affect the story, by seeking out anger from inside of Belinda and releasing it. Unlike the sylphs, however, Umbriel is a manifestation of the woman prude. In Mock-Heroic From Butler to Cowper, Terry Richard writes, "The essential technique of mock-heroic consists of a contravention of the canon of fit style, the principle, that is, that the content and style of a work should be in sympathy with each other" (Richard, 12). This is exactly what Pope has done with the sylphs, flip convention. The machinery, which Pope himself in his "Receit" states that "no Epick Poem can possibly subsist without," is inverted in Pope's poem (Pope The Rape of, 28). The big is made physically small, the epic minute. However, the sylphs are equally if not more so concerned for the fate of Belinda as the machines in the traditional epic. The sylphs, by showing such devotion to a "trivial" matter, serve to humiliate themselves and their concern, women's vanity and Belinda's lock.

In discussing the sylphs of the Rape of the Lock, Kinsley remarks on an apparent disagreement between Addison and Pope: "Pope's allusion implies that the sylphs are the idols, Addison's that Belinda and her fellow coquettes are. But the two perspectives are really one, since sylphs are projections of woman's nature" (Kinsley, 259). To be sure, the sylphs are the primary engines of Pope's poems, but are they the deities? Whereas the heroes of Homer and Virgil worshiped their respective pantheon of gods, Zeus and Jupiter, the hero of the Rape of the Lock, Belinda, worships herself. Pope writes:

First, robed in white, the nymph intent adores

With head uncovered, the cosmetic pow'rs.

A heav'nly image in the glass appears,

To that she bends, to that her eyes she rears. (Pope 1. 123-126)

Pope presents Belinda as both the hero and the god. Nicholson writes that this scene is a "dehumanizing process," continuing that, "the mirror reflexion conveys to the reader precisely the reified image that is the object of all her devotions" (Nicholson, 72). Pope takes advantage of the mock-epic form. Richard writes, "Mock-heroic is a literary genre dedicated to the marriage of opposites: the trivial hitched to the solemn, the prostrate coupled with the elevated" (Richard, 99). Pope is pushing the boundaries, even so. Belinda is a woman, not a goddess. By elevating her to a deity status, Pope is also lowering the standards of the epic form, and thus mocking the values of women in his time. Pope, maintaining his mock-epic structure, drew from Milton for Belinda's vanity. Eve, when she first awakes, becomes completely transfixed with herself, similar to Narcissus, before being led to Adam. Kinsley writes, "it was Eve's vanity that later made her susceptible to the serpent's temptation. Belinda's infatuation [. . .] will perhaps have proportionally serious consequences, especially since she is in no mood to submit to any man and since all she has for counsellors are the sylphs" (Kinsley, 5). Unlike Eve, Belinda has no new being to worship. She remains her own goddess through the poem, as she is for the other characters as well. The Baron, the sylphs, Betty, Belinda's maid, they worship Belinda in the manner of a goddess. This vanity, this idolatry is what causes so much trouble. Belinda's supernatural status is what initially causes her lock to be stolen as well as her uncouth reaction to her loss. Kinsley continues his Eve/Belinda analysis: "like Belinda's lock, Eve's apple is a trivial object endowed with great significance by a particular context" (Kinsley, 112). Pope elevates the importance of Belinda's lock through the mock-epic form. He fuses the hero and deity into one, thereby elevating Belinda's lock and its importance as a result of her deification. The role of the hero, and of the deity, in the traditional epic, is warped by Pope's writing. Belinda is raised to an immortal level, and the bar for deity is also lowered. Belinda is a product of her culture and fashion and "toyshop." Pope is saying that the upper-class women of his time are worshiped. By elevating a human to an immortal level, and juxtaposing this with the degradation of epic form, the worship is made literal, and ultimately comes off as ridiculous.

The mock-epic form works by degrading the epic while elevating the common. Pope juxtaposes the epic form with the triviality valued by his culture. Gods are made little, insignificant sylphs; a hero is made a goddess. Pope satirizes his cultural zeitgeist by elevating average content to epic status.


Works Cited

Brooks, Cleanth. "The Case of Miss Arabella Fermor." Twentieth Century Interpretations of The Rape

of the Lock: A Collection of Critical Essays. Ed G. S. Rousseau. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall Inc., 1969. 21-37.

Dennis, John. Pope: The Rape of the Lock: A Casebook. Ed. John Dixon Hunt. 1728. Remarks on Mr

Pope's Rape of the Lock, In Several Letters to a Friend. Tennessee: Aurora Publishers Inc., 1970. 51-65.

Edwards, Michael. "A Meaning for Mock-Heroic." The Yearbook of English Studies. JSTOR 15

(1985): 48-63. Warren Wilson College Lib., Asheville, NC. 14 Apr. 2008 .

Hunt, John Dixon. Introduction. Pope: The Rape of the Lock: A Casebook. By John Dixon Hunt.

Tennessee: Aurora Publishers Inc., 1970. 11-20.

Kinsley, William. Contexts II: The Rape of the Lock. Ed. William Kinsley. Connecticut: Archon

Books, 1979.

Nicholson, C.E. "A World of Artefacts: The Rape of the Lock as Social History." Modern Critical

Interpretations: Alexander Pope's The Rape of the Lock. Ed. Harold Bloom. New York: 1988 Chelsea House Publishers, 67-79.

Pope, Alexander. "A Receit To Make An Epick Poem." Pope: The Rape of the Lock: A Casebook.

Ed. John Dixon Hunt. Tennessee: Aurora Publishers Inc., 1970. 25-29.

Pope, Alexander. "The Rape of the Lock: An Heroi-Comical Poem in Five Cantos" The Longman

Anthology of British Literature: The Restoration and the 18th Century. 2nd ed. Ed. Stuart Sherman. New York: Addison-Wesley, 2003. 2504-2523.

Rousseau, G. S. Introduction. Twentieth Century Interpretations of The Rape of the Lock: A Collection

of Critical Essays. By G. S. Roussea. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall Inc., 1969. 1-14.

Terry, Richard. Mock-Heroic From Butler to Cowper: an English Genre and Discourse.

Vermont: Ashgate Publishing Co., 2005.

Tillotson, Geoffrey. The Poems of Alexander Pope, Volume II. The Rape of the Lock and Other

Poems. 3rd ed. The Broadwater Press Ltd.: Great Britain, 1962.

Tillotson, Geoffrey. "The Rape of the Lock: An Introduction." Pope: The Rape of the Lock: A

Casebook. Ed. John Dixon Hunt. Tennessee: Aurora Publishers Inc., 1970. 117-134.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Awesome Band

This is a video from a band that I was introduced to last year at some point - my current favorite band. Not sure how many of you will like them (mom, don't even try), but if you have the time you should give it a try.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A4Iobo18U9w

Saturday, April 26, 2008

The Best of Musicals

This is a list I have compiled of what I believe to be the best songs in each musical.

Evita: Buenos Aires
Evita: Another Suitcase in Another Hall
Evita: Don't Cry for me Argentina
Evita: Oh What a Circus
Evita: High Flying, Adored
Evita: Rainbow High
Evita: She is a Diamond
Evita: Eva's Final Broadcast

Miss Saigon: The Heat is on in Saigon
Miss Saigon: The Movie in my Mind
Miss Saigon: Why God Why
Miss Saigon: This Money is Yours
Miss Saigon: What's this I find
Miss Saigon: I Still Believe
Miss Saigon: This is the Hour
Miss Saigon: I'd give my life for you
Miss Saigon: Bui-Doi
Miss Saigon: Please
Miss Saigon: The Fall of Saigon
Miss Saigon: Now that I've seen her
Miss Saigon: The Sacred Bird

Wiked: No One Mourns the Wiked
Wiked: The Wizard and I
Wiked: Dancing Through Life
Wiked: Popular
Wiked: I'm Not That Girl
Wiked: Defying Gravity
Wiked: Thank Goodness
Wiked: As Long As You're Mine
Wiked: No Good Deed


PotO (Musical 2004) : Think of Me
PotO (Musical 2004) : The Phantom of the Opera
PotO (Musical 2004) : Music of the Nigt
PotO (Musical 2004) : Stranger Than You Dreamt It
PotO (Musical 2004) : All I Ask of You
PotO (Musical 2004) : Masquerade
PotO (Musical 2004) : Wishing you Were Smehow Here
PotO (Musical 2004) : We Have All Been Blind
PotO (Musical 2004) : The Point of No Return
PotO (Musical 2004) : Down Once More
PotO (Musical 2004) : Learn to Be Lonely

Lion King Broadway: The Circle of Life
Lion King Broadway: Grasslands Chant
Lion King Broadway: They Live in You
Lion King Broadway: Be Prepared
Lion King Broadway: The Stampede
Lion King Broadway: One by One
Lion King Broadway: The Madness of King Scar
Lion King Broadway: Shadowland
Lion King Broadway: Simba's Endless Night
Lion King Broadway: Can You Feel the Love Tonight
Lion King Broadway: He Lives in You

----------------------------------

Coming Soon...

Grease:
Phantom of the Opera (West End 1986):

The Universal Question

This is serious, I really want an answer.

What has a higher chance of growing on a tree? Grapes or Miracles?

Think about it. Don't just answer. Think about the 2 choices and the question, answer for serious.

We Met at Starbucks

Trigger Happy TV: Restaurant Lift

Trigger Happy TV: Stalker Mice

Trigger Happy TV: Squrrel Attack

Trigger Happy TV: Roadworks

Trigger Happy TV: Hedge Maze

Plane Mergers

United Airline and Continental Airlines announced that they are close to a merger. This is heavily due to the fact that Delta and Northwest Airlines merged just recently. Monopoly, here we come.

Friday, April 25, 2008

New Nedroid Post

Source

Which Color???

OK, dudes, Hans is getting a new bike in the very near future...do me a solid and check out this link: check out the links with the four different frame colors and let me know which you like the best. These are "colors of the month," and you will see when the discontinue the color choices. They also have their four or five standard colors that are available the time.

This is a very high quality steel cyclo-cross frame made in Wisconsin.

http://www.gunnarbikes.com/

Evita

I don't know what I've been thinking. For some reason I have survived without the Evita Soundtrack for 2.5 years. How did that happen?

Oh, well. I have it now, it is absolutely Falcon Punch!!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

York Kiln Fire


An all day fire ends successfully with a temperature reached of 2220 degrees. When the kiln is pened in a day or two--then we will see what the fire hath wrought.

My Momma Done Bit Me



Unfortunately, Honeysuckle got a little confused and bit this wee puppy above the eye. She probably needs a few stitches but this bandage should suffice temporarily.

Verb Test

Ok, fill in the blank. Don't cheat and look up the answers.

You are (verb for Scare)_____ me.

That was a(verb for Scar)_____ experience.

For the blank, write the verb of "Scare" and "Scar" in separate sentences.

Frog Life

Watching this frog special on Animal Planet. Crazy Stuff. This one Red Dart Frog has a cool way of living. A male and female frog will go into a secluded area where the female will lay her eggs. The male will then fertilize the egg's right there on the spot, on the ground, after they are hatched. After a few days, the egg hatches and becomes a tad pole. The only available water is within little caches within the top of plants where the leaves and stalk meet. The tadpoles attach themselves to the back of the mother who carries them to the water cache and drops them off until the become frogs. In order to feed them, she drops unfertilized eggs into the water for them to eat.

Cool stuff.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Advertise Much??

GTA IV is a Major AAA, coming out on the 29th. They are doing some serious advertising. How in the heck do they print those things?

Postal Worker Catches Falling Baby

Pretty cool, you should watch the video.

CNN Video

Process of Web Design

Been making my site for about 2 days now, here are the results, little by little. I will be updating it when I change it again, which should be soon.







Sunday, April 20, 2008

Internet!??!one!

This is a conversation I had over Instant Messenger with a friend.

LOL: Laugh out Loud
ROFL: Roll on Floor Laughing
ROFLCOPTER: Roll on Floor Laughing alot (similar to a helicopter's blades spinning)


I am Archaic400

Archaic400: did you see the design comp?
Jason Parkinson: no I'm trying to get that stupid router you gave me to work
Archaic400: oh
Jason Parkinson: was there an installation cd for it?
Archaic400: no
Jason Parkinson: that's screwed
Archaic400: if there was and I don't remember
Archaic400: there will be the software files on the internet
Archaic400: if you bring me a harddrive
Archaic400: I'll see if I can grab the latest firmware update for you
Jason Parkinson: couldn't I grab it from here?
Archaic400: you don't have interne ti thought
Jason Parkinson: how am I talking to you?
Archaic400: oh
LOL

Archaic400: ROFL
Archaic400: LOL
Archaic400: ROFLCOPTR
Jason Parkinson: behold the powers of telepathy!
Jason Parkinson: in text form
Archaic400: what does that say about me and a computer
Archaic400: ??
Jason Parkinson: that you know squat :P

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Why I Know I am not a Guy

WebMD has an article about a supposed 11 secrets that men innately keep. After reading this article, it has even more so proven to me that I am not a guy. 1 out of the 11 may pertain to me.

11 "Don't-Tell-the-Wife" Secrets All Men Keep

In fact, I think the only one that applies to me, is "Secret #1". Not that I've ever dated anyone before, but I feel like I would know if the others pertained to me.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

My Dream

Ok, so I had a wierd dream. I'll write what I can remember.

Finn and I were at someone house. I think it was an old lady. It was night and there were old fashioned 17th century lamps around, the ones you would find in cities. Her house was more like a mansion and her front yard was a graveyard, kind of, at least it seemed that way. Finn and I had been digging holes I think, like really really big ones, that were perfect rectangles. We then found lots of gold, pretty sure that is why we were there, to find some sort of treasure that she knew about and belonged to her, but she kept buried because she was an old person. Finn and I stole the money and put it in our car. Not sure what the car was, might have been an unmarked white van. Finn was going to drive, but since it was dark outside he could get the key into the ignition. So I had to do that for him, and then we drove away. We didn't go far I don't think. I'm thinking we went like next door. But it wasn't like, a "hey I can see my neighbors" kind of thing. The landscape was really strange. Like something out of a Dr. Seuss book, large rolling hills. And her neighbor was like above and behind her house hidden away it seemed. I was watching all of this from a zoomed out perspective, like I was in a game and had to see the house I was driving away from as well as my destination. While we were going to the other house, I think she was talking to police and they began chasing us. Then I woke up.

What was really weird is that I woke up really really scared. I remember the very first thing I thought was "Man, I could have had a heart attack." That is how scared I was.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Cloverfield

I just saw the movie Cloverfield. It is easily one of the greatest movies I have ever seen, go rent it.

Batman: Gotham Knight

New Batman: Gotham Knight images have been released.

You can view the images here

Saturday, April 12, 2008

BEST IN SHOW

seth just called,
prizes are grand prize,then best in show, then 2nd,
seth got best in show which is 1st place,
2,500 dollars plus another 500 in certificates for art supplies,
ammisssions is payed for next year also, as another award,
both of them pretty darn excited sounding,
he said he dressed decently, and had to shake alot of hands,
and a guy said he has amazing paintings hanging on his walls, but seths is better,
thats our little sethy

SomeGrey Bloke: Olympic News

Let's do this

Surfwise Movie Trailer

I know Hans won't mind. Money is kind of an issue, but it already is anyway, so how much worse could it get?

Norah Jones

I give her a 12 out of a 10.




Friday, April 11, 2008

Pic Lens

Download Pic Lens Here

Everyone should download this. It is incredible. Once it is downloaded and you restart your brower, use the little blue arrow at the top-right of your brower to use it.

United States C02 Map

Thursday, April 10, 2008

orlando

no problem guys. i actually saw Orlando on the sidewalk last nite and he's coming to our party next week. he said he's bringing denzel washington. sorry hilary, he didn't mention you. but i saw his kid brother (who's like 18) lst nite too and he wants to meet hannah.

CAN YOU BE KEANU?

if you're lucky...

but i'll tell who you definitely can be keanu,
who IS keanu...

little black girl with the orange bow.

hans' and my pup.

that's right.

honor her.

love her.

strive to BE her.

she is keanu.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

add to the plan

once we take over the island,
hilary some how gets in touch with orlando and invites him to the island,
after orlando comes he invites mike newell(his new director) from prince of persia to the island ,(with our permission),
then, mike invites the harry potter cast to the island, and we all become bff's
awsome right,
love ev

Disney/Pixar History

I took the time to find out what was the deal between them. Wikipedia, as always, had the answer.

Instead of having me explain, just read about it here yourself

Pretty interesting to say the least. For anyone wanting to skip to the end. Disney bought out Pixar. They had terms however.

  • If Pixar had pulled out of the deal, they would have been required to pay Disney a penalty of US$210 million.
  • John Lasseter has the authority to approve films for both Disney and Pixar studios, with Bob Iger and Roy Disney carrying final approving authority.
  • The deal required that Pixar's primary directors and creative executives must also join the combined company. This includes Andrew Stanton, Pete Docter, Brad Bird, Bob Peterson, Brenda Chapman, Lee Unkrich, and Gary Rydstrom.
  • There will be a steering committee that will oversee animation for both Disney and Pixar studios, with a mission to maintain and spread the Pixar culture. This committee will consist of Catmull, Lasseter, Jobs, Iger, Cook and Tom Staggs. They will meet at Pixar headquarters at least once every two months.
  • Pixar HR policies will remain intact, including the lack of employment contracts.
  • Ensures the Pixar name will continue, and that the studio will remain in its current Emeryville, California location with the "Pixar" sign.
  • Branding of films made post-merger will be "Disney•Pixar" (starting with Cars).

Blu-Ray Deal

Anyone have a Blu-Ray player, I do. Buy 2 get a 3rd free. Great deal going on here.

Amazon Blu-Ray Deal

Disney/Pixar Through 2012

May 29th 2009: Up

October 2nd, 2009: TOY STORY in 3-D

February 12th, 2010: TOY STORY 2 in 3-D

June 18th, 2010: Toy Story 3

Summer 2011: Newt

Christmas 2011: The Bear and the Bow

2012: Cars 2

*When it says "in 3-D" it means Disney Digital 3-D. Which only applies to theaters. The viewer wears polarized glasses that makes the image seem free-standing from the screen.

I have a question. What is the deal with Disney/Pixar? I thought they split up after multiple disagreements. Apparently not.


Read about what Pixar's Plans are Here

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

How to get GAS back down to $1.30 per gallon

This is from a group started on Facebook. I think it will work, why wouldn't it?

-----------------

THIS IS NOT THE 'DON'T BUY' GAS FOR ONE DAY, BUT IT WILL SHOW YOU HOW WE CAN GET GAS BACK DOWN TO $1.30 PER GALLON.

I hear we are going to hit close to $ 4.00 a gallon by next summer and it might go higher!! Want gasoline prices to come down? We need to take some intelligent, united action. The oil companies just laughed at us when we tried to unite to not buy gas for a day because they knew we wouldn't continue to 'hurt' ourselves by continuing it any longer.
Phillip Hollsworth offered this good idea, and this idea make much more sense than the 'don't buy gas on a certain day' campaign that was going around last April or May!
It's worth your consideration.


The only way we are going to see the price of gas come down is if we hit someone in the pocketbook by not purchasing their gas! And, WE CAN DO IT WITHOUT HURTING OURSELVES.
How? Since we all rely on our cars, we can't just stop buying gas.
But we CAN have an impact on gas prices if we all act together to force a price war.
Here's the idea: For the rest of this year, DON'T purchase ANY gasoline from the two biggest companies (which now are one), EXXON and MOBIL.
If they are not selling any gas, they will be inclined to reduce their prices. If they reduce their prices, the other companies will have to follow suit.
But to have an impact, we need to reach literally millions of Exxon and Mobil gas buyers. It's really simple to do! Now, don't wimp out on me at this point...keep reading and I'll explain how simple it is to reach millions of people!!

If this makes sense to you, please pass this message on. I suggest that we not buy from EXXON/MOBIL UNTIL THEY LOWER THEIR PRICES TO THE $2.00 RANGE AND KEEP THEM DOWN. THIS CAN REALLY WORK.


Keep it going

------------------

A person commenting on the group said that you have to make sure that you know who owns what. So make sure you aren't visiting a gas station that is owned by Exxon or Mobil with a different name.

Seriously, spread the word. Send this to your whole email contact list if you wish, the more people that know the better.

Joshua Bell in DC Subway

Watch the first video and then the second one.






Read the Story

Monday, April 7, 2008

New Plan for Island II

i take it by force, install sharp pointy sticks along the edge to keep out intruders (but the loons can still get thru to nest) and set up a high wathtower to guard it with fishing tackle and poles. then i live there after planting copious edibles, while i write a grand philosophical treatise on the meaning of the Universe, called "Absolute Heirarchy." visitirs can come with written permission. Lucy and Hans will be permitted.

Movies Good and Bad

First, their making a Prince of Persia movie. Prince of Persia was an amazing platforming game originally released for a number of systems in 1989. More recently, however, the series was recreated as a trilogy for the PS2 era consoles, and developed by my favorite studio, Ubisoft Montreal. So, their making a movie. The Prince of Persia trilogy is amazing, by the way, some of the best games for the latest generation of consoles. The director is Mike Newell, the guy who directed Goblet of Fire. The writer is pretty cool, actually, the guy who created the game series and wrote all of them. Today comes rumors, probably substantial, that Orlando Bloom will play the Prince. Personally, this is pretty good news. You could do a lot worse. However, Bloom isn't quite as cool as the other recently rumored front-runner for the part, a real prince of persia. Really. He's apparently an actor, too. That would be awesome. Anyway, Orlando Bloom is alright. He'd actually fit the part pretty well.

The other news I bring today is bad. They are also making a movie of The Matrese Circle, one of the greatest books ever written. Aside from the Bourne series, this is my favorite Ludlum book. The two guys who wrote the newer version of 3:10 to Yuma are writing the movie. Thats good news. The bad news is that they have cast Denzel Washington as my boy Bray (the main character). First, Bray is white; or maybe I'm just racist. While Sir Denzel did an amazing job with Training Day, I really don't feel he fits the part. I just really don't want them to desecrate another excellent piece of literature for the 20-somethings mass-market. Matrese Circle is just such a good book, but its really long and kind of slow, and I'm just worried they're going to ruin the pacing and actual story for fake action scenes that don't even take place in the book. They've already started off with the wrong foot by casting Denzel. I wonder who they will cast as the other main lead, a russian character, and who they will cast as the lead female.

Lost: What?

Seasons 1 through 3. For Finn and Evergreen.

More Windsurfing

The wind is about 20 MPH


It is a cold and misty day. I have a sweater a down vest and a jacket on.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

FFVII: The Why

I think everyone should read this. It won't take long.

The Frames in Atlanta

The Frames is Coming to Atlanta May 13th.

If you want to buy tickets, do so by clicking here.

2:30 tea

You Have To Burn The Rope

Teh Awesome
Be sure to listen to the credits!

A Little WInd




Hans finally able to get out. But came back in to change to a larger sail.

New, New Plan for Island

Brad Rowe invites Lucy Liu to Eleanor Island for vacation. She loves the island, buys the island, and meets Hans this summer. She falls in love with him, moves to Vermont with him, learns to windsurf and snowboard, and they live happily ever after off of her vast bank account.

p.s. if you would like, you can go ahead and substitute "Lucy Liu" for Avril Lavigne, Keira Knightely, or any super-hot and cool windsurfer or kiteboarding chick.

Hans out

Firefox: Get It or Get Out

If you use the internet, and you like to not wait for things to load, than do the following 5 things.


A. If you haven't already, Download Firefox
B. Once you have done that, Download Fire Tune
C. Run Fire Tune with Firefox not open
D. When it is done, start Firefox, never use Internet Explorer/Safari/Opera ect. ever again
E. Experience AMAZING

Firefox for Mac

Saturday, April 5, 2008

bugs and beaches

so, hans and keith camp, with sand
and noah and jill stake out on the futon!
where , oh where ,
did the little bugs come from noah?
you have a new mattres,
and painted apartment.
where oh where, did they come from
i mean , i'm really sorry,
and i wish i could send daisy to destroy them all,
and noah, the beard?
cool,
manchurian candidate,
love, mom

Hmm...

what could this ugly creature be?= the bedbug that's been my biting bane since we moved here. we ordered a kit for $160 that has a 98.5% success rate. now if only we were ever here to receive it...we've been sleeping (happily) in the living room on the futon. the bugs have not moved out of our bedroom (thank you know who). but you know i'd rather have these bloodsuckers than the evil cockroaches for which i have no compassion.

Fun with a beard




Afternoon on Cape Hatteras

Hans is pretty excited to be here and go windsurfing.

We have quiet neighbors here at the campsite.

This is about as much us as this sale got today, thanks to no wind.

Cape Hatteras




Rain and wind last night. hans and I sitting in a local coffee house at the moment. maybe he will be able to windsurf this afternoon. I plan to work on my grant and do some writing.

Friday, April 4, 2008

new plan for island

so, brad rowe invites patrick dempsy to leighty's island for vacation,
then patrick decides to buy it,
connections from the movie Lucky 7

Cape Hatteras

Hans and I are camping at Rodanthe, NC for the next several days. I got here just before six and by 6:30 had the tent up and had started dinner. Hans should be here ab out eleven. He will spend the week wind-surfing and he says he also has a lot of work to do. I plan to work on a grant for a clergy sabbatical and work on some writings. The bay looking east is about 75 feet ways and the ocean is about 1/4 mile away. Wish you all were here. love dad

guess

what's green
and can take care of 7
and flys like the wind,
but on the ground,
and was gone ,
but is found,
and is a csi
item???????
lvoe, mom

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Watch the Office

Watch the Office Online Here

I think all of the episodes are there.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

harry potter

finn, is the harry potter 8 book for real,
or not,

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

What it feels like to have a stroke




This is amazing and everyone should watch it.

Observing the Brain in Realtime

3rd Graders plot attack on Teacher

Wow. 9-children plotted to attack their teacher.

Read about it here

Long story short, there was a bag full of items that consisted of:
Gloves
Steak Knife (Tip Broken)
Hand-Cuffs
Duct Tape
Electrical and Transparent Tape
Ribbons
Crystal Paperweight

First off, where does a child get real hand-cuffs? Also, if you are going to pick a knife, why the broken one?

I don't know about you, but I call April Fools. Really, what better way for the media to catch the public off-guard than pull the old "Kids intend to murder" routine?

The Reason the Site is Black

Woah! I bet thats what you thought when you saw the blog today. There is a reason for that, it turns out. From blogger's website:

In recognition of a global energy crisis, blogger has switched off the lights. All of blogger and all blogspot domains will be presented in the color black for today only. Blogger sub-domains will return to their original color automatically tomorrow. While a black display in truth does not use less resources than other colors, our parent company Google would like to raise awareness of an excess of energy use in the modern day. Thank You for your support.

"Any customer can have a car painted any colour that he wants so long as it is black."
-Henry Ford, 1992