Tuesday, August 24, 2004


I don't want a stupid PhD! Let my people go!

Sunday, August 22, 2004

Urban Living

Just for the record, I have decided that I *have* to live in a urban setting. It's the only thing keeping me sane these days!

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Random Spoutings

PhD factor for today: 2.0 (on a scale from 0 to 10)

So, it's been a less mentally productive week so far. The thing about mentally unproductive weeks is that I still think--I'm just not thinking about what I'm supposed to be thinking about (ad-hoc networks and so on.)

It would be nice to have a job where I was just paid to think about whatever I felt like thinking about. I suppose that'd be something like a cross between an artist, a consultant, and a psych ward patient.

Really, it's starting to get to the point where I'd just like to have an income.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

My milkshake brings all the boys to the wedding...

Ok, so today, I attended the sort of event that I haven't attended since I was 4. That would be 20 years ago, for those of you that need things spelled out for you.

I went to a wedding!

A friend of mine from highschool, Kaitlin Roach, was joined in holy matrimony to her now-husband Bradley Olsen. It was absolutely beautiful, I must say I was really touched. I 'd only seen Kaitie once or twice since graduating from highschool, so it was somewhat shocking to see her come out, looking so gorgeous (not that she is not ALWAYS pretty), in a wedding dress!

The ceremony proceeding, well, mostly unceremoniously. That's not particularly a bad thing. It went as planned! Except, perhaps, for the part where Kaitie's dad welled up while reading the scripture. It was very very cute.

The other brilliant part of today's event was that I got to see a lot of people who I haven't seen in quite a while. Nick Counts, Matt McLaughlin, John Watts, Regan Roberts, and Kenny Roach. It's great to see that they were all, more or less, the same wonderful people that they were when I knew them in high school. The better memories of high school were reawakened!

After the ceremony there was, of course, a reception. I think the highlight of the reception was seeing Kaitie's grandmother keep the place alive! This woman was great... she certainly had more energy than I did! And she made it her duty to dance with every man there.

At one point, there was the traditional tossing of the bouquet. Being somewhat wined-up, and a bit of a clown, I decided to join the girl in attempting to catch it. I wasn't really going to try very hard, I mostly just held my hand out and made melodramatic expressions. However, Kaitie tossed the bouquet and it literally fell into my hand. I kid you not. I didn't even have to try. The wedding party seemed to get a kick out of it, luckily.

I was NOT aware of the second part of the tradition--the tossing of the garter. Bradley removed it and tossed it, but none of the guys really seemed to jump to grab it... leaving it for my highschool friend Matthew McLaughlin to catch. He, it seems, was ALSO not aware of the final part of the tradition.

He had to put the garter onto my leg.

My face was incredibly red during most of this time. The professional photographers ATE this up though. I think they are part of the paparazzi!

I was a little concerned that I had stomped all over the tradition, and that the girls would never forgive me for it. But then I realized the following things:

  • Everyone had a good time.
  • Gavin Newsom's goodwill was just shot down in court, so I'm supposed to be bitter.
  • The wedding was in the San Francisco metropolitan area: what you expect??
So, good times were had by all. After the wedding, we went back to spend a little bit more time with my friends at their hotel room. After sharing stories and catching up, Regan introduced us to the cartoon known as Aqua Teen Hunger Force. *I* had always thought that this was some anime show, since when the titles are translated to English, they always seem to be random strings of words like that. However, I was suprised to find that it was in fact very American: a floating serving of french fries, a walking milkshake, and a roly-poly amorphous ball of meat. I'm not sure what else to say, you'll have to do the research on your own.
Today, I am going to a wedding! The last time I went to a wedding was when I was a ring bearer for my Aunt Kendra's wedding. I was, 4, I think. She still has it on video! The only things I really remember from that wedding are doing the "funky chicken" dance, and the fact that Kara got a really cool lollipop because she made a request from the DJ (I was uspet!).

The wedding present I chose was a fondue set from Linens and Things. At first, it seemed like a somewhat trite choice. But in the end, it seemed like a somewhat cute idea. I wanted something that they could do together. I just hope they don't end up with 14 fondu kits. :)

Just for effect, we're using a shower-loofah with a lion head as the ribbon. Teehee.

Saturday, August 14, 2004

Thar she blows!

I'd "caught wind" of the fact that there's been quite a storm brewing over on the Atlantic coast. I hadn't seen much about it on the news, but I did check weather.com yesterday, and I saw that hurrican Charly had basically eaten the whole Florida peninsula. I mean, It was literally covering the whole thing! That's a recipe for disaster...

So this morning we went to get coffee, and on the front page of the Sac Bee are picture of utter devesation! Right in the city that my grandmother lives in! The front page photo was of a liquor store... only one floor was left standing, and it seemed like a U-Haul had been blown on top of everything! Maybe someone just drove it there, though. I can't find the Sac Bee photo, but here are some others.
Anyway, I haven't been able to get in touch with my grandmother, so I hope she's ok!

Friday, August 13, 2004


For those of you who are at all interested in the more serious, career-oriented side of Jason, you can follow my PhD pursuits on my other blog. I'll try to make it interesting, but academics are not known for their appearances on late-night talk shows, or in entertainment magazines, so no promises!

Thursday, August 12, 2004


Today was a "low-food" day. It's a habit I really need to kick. I have a very bizarre appetite, which will only allow me to eat certain things at very particular times. On one hand, it keeps me skinny, on the other hand, it means I usually don't have enough energy. I think it's a root-cause of a lot of my other problems (general exhaustion, lack of motivation, etc.) I'm not sure what I should do about it, so if anyone has any suggestions, let me know!

Wednesday, August 11, 2004


As you may have read here, my best friend is moving to Minneapolis, soon. Let me tell you, briefly, the history that my best friend and I have. After reading Rob's posts, I am beginning to feel inferior when it comes to holding the public interest, but we'll have a go at it anyway.

Jessica and I met in pre-school. The daycare was in an institution known as the "Pyle Center." It wasn't a bad place. Of course, when you're 4, you're too young to realize that most of the people that live in your super-rural southern Delaware county are numbskull bumpkins. But I digress.

According to Jessica, she did not ever know my name that year. She referred to me, to her mother, as "the boy I play Care Bears with." (It's ok to use dangling prepositions when you're 4.) "Playing Care Bears" is not a euphemism for anything sexual (WE WERE 4!). It simply meant that we crawled up to the top of a jungle gym, muttered some phrases from the then-popular cartoon, and then jumped off, in a flight-like fashion. I'm suprised we didn't kill ourselves.

The next year, we went to kindergarten, where Jessica actually remembered my name. We then became very close friends, and remained so until middle school. Since middle school is basically a giant vat of fresh testosterone and estrogen, everyone was too busy trying to stay afloat to actually be friends with anyone. In fact, she even went as far, one time, as collaborating with uber-bitch Gretchen Lieb in one of her "let's be an uber-bitch" plans. It was a simple one, in which Jessica pretended to "have a crush on me. " I think I was supposed to fall for it, but I made the mistake of just writing on my return note 'Call me then.' I should have written 'You're full of it, but call me anyway.' Unfortunately, only writing "Call me then." meant that I fell for the joke. Bugger.

Anyway, by the end of 8th grade, we'd re-forged a true friendship. Soon after, we called each other "Best friends." This was new to me, since, despite the fun we had together in elementary school, I was frequently informed that I could not possibly be her best friend, because Nellie Bradford was her best friend. But she said it was ok if she was my best friend. Greedy bitch.

There are so many stories, which I will probably attempt to recount one-by-one, as I've been meaning to do for a while. When you get old, memories start to get hazy! Hopefully Jessica will drop by and leave some additional stories in the form of comments!

I think I had a point with all of this, but I've since forgotten it. But it was fun, anyway.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004


So, here I am, two years into a graduate program at the University of California, Davis. I haven't been TERRIBLY productive during those two years, although I have managed to get almost all of my class requirements finish (I have one more), and to pass the preliminary exams (it was my second try, but I got a clear pass!)

Anyway, I haven't really seemed to figure out how to enjoy research. It basically involves reading lots of dry papers, thinking about what people have already done, trying to do something new, and then writing new, dry papers about it. It sounds pretty lucrative, except for the "dry" part.

My guess is that the real problem is that I can't manage to get myself to do something if I don't enjoy it. Which basically means I'm going to have big trouble when I get a real job.

I'm going to say that a major problem is one of focus. I tend to become bored with whatever I'm doing within a period of a few weeks or months. So, I'm going to have to find a career that won't allow me to get bored. Some of you might suggest, say, teaching. "Oh, teaching is great, it's new every 4 months!" Ok, no. It's still teaching. You still write lesson plans, grade papers, and try to convince morons that they're not stupid.

So, what will I do? Will I stay in the PhD program? Will I get a Master's and move to Raleigh with Rob? This all remains to be seen. Tune in next time!