Order the Cheesy Bean and Rice Burrito as follows:
Add Sour Cream
Steam the Tortilla
Eat and Enjoy the cheesy beefy goodness!
Think of the solution, not the problem
Each year, Dihydrogen Monoxide is a known causative component in many thousands of deaths and is a major contributor to millions upon millions of dollars in damage to property and the environment. Some of the known perils of Dihydrogen Monoxide are:
Death due to accidental inhalation of DHMO, even in small quantities.
Prolonged exposure to solid DHMO causes severe tissue damage.
Excessive ingestion produces a number of unpleasant though not typically life-threatening side-effects.
DHMO is a major component of acid rain.
Gaseous DHMO can cause severe burns.
Contributes to soil erosion.
Leads to corrosion and oxidation of many metals.
Contamination of electrical systems often causes short-circuits.
Exposure decreases effectiveness of automobile brakes.
Found in biopsies of pre-cancerous tumors and lesions.
Often associated with killer cyclones in the U.S. Midwest and elsewhere.
Thermal variations in DHMO are a suspected contributor to the El Nino weather effect.
( )Rocky Horror Picture Show
(x)Pirates of the Caribbean
(x) Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man's Chest
(x) Boondock Saints
(x) Fight Club
() Starsky and Hutch
(x) Neverending Story
(x) Blazing Saddles
(x) Universal Soldier
(x) Lemony Snicket: A Series Of Unfortunate Events
(x) Along Came Polly
(x) Never Been Kissed
(x) Meet The Parents
(x) Meet the Fockers
(x)Eight Crazy Nights
(x) Joe Dirt
(x) KING KONG
Total so far: 17
() A Cinderella Story
()The Lizzie McGuire Movie
() Passport to Paris
(x) Dumb & Dumber
() Dumber & Dumberer
(x) Final Destination
(x) Final Destination 2
(x) Final Destination 3
( ) Halloween
(x) The Ring
() The Ring 2
() Surviving X-MAS
Total so far: 24
(x) Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle
( ) Practical Magic
( ) From Hell
(x) Secret Window
()I Am Sam
(x) The Whole Nine Yards
(x) The Whole Ten Yards
Total so far: 30
(x) The Day After Tomorrow
() Child's Play
() Seed of Chucky
() Bride of Chucky
(x) Ten Things I Hate About You
(x) Just Married
(x) Nightmare on Elm Street
( ) Sixteen Candles
(x) Remember the Titans
( ) Coach Carter
() The Grudge
() The Grudge 2
(x) The Mask
(x) Son Of The Mask
Total so far: 38
(x) Bad Boys
(x) Bad Boys 2
( ) Joy Ride
(x) Lucky Number Slevin
(x) Ocean's Eleven
(x) Ocean's Twelve
(x) Bourne Identity
(x) Bourne Supremecy
(x) Predator I
() Predator II
() The Fog
(x) Ice Age
(x) Ice Age 2: The Meltdown
() Curious George
Total so far: 49
(x) Independence Day
( ) A Bronx Tale
() Darkness Falls
( ) Christine
( ) Children of the Corn
( ) My Bosses Daughter
()Maid in Manhattan
(x) War of the Worlds
(x) Rush Hour
(x) Rush Hour 2
Total so far: 53
( ) Best Bet
() How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
( ) She's All That
( ) Calendar Girls
( ) Sideways
( ) Mars Attacks!
( ) Event Horizon
(x) Ever After
(x) Wizard of Oz
(x) Forrest Gump
( ) Big Trouble in Little China
(x) The Terminator
(x) The Terminator 2
(x) The Terminator 3
Total so far: 59
(x) Spider-Man 2
() Jeepers Creepers
() Jeepers Creepers 2
(x) Catch Me If You Can
(x) The Little Mermaid
(x) Freaky Friday
(x) Reign of Fire
( ) The Skulls (and skulls 2 and 3...lol)
(x) Cruel Intentions
(x) Cruel Intentions 2
(x) The Hot Chick
(x) Shrek 2
(x) Shrek 3
Total so far: 75
(x) Miracle on 34th street
(x) Old School
() The Notebook
( ) K-Pax
( ) Kippendorf's Tribe
() A Walk to Remember
( ) Ice Castles
(x) The 40-year-old-virgin
Total so far: 80
(x) Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Ring
(x) Lord of the Rings The Two Towers
(x) Lord of the Rings Return Of the King
(x) Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark
(x) Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
(x) Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
Total so far: 86
( ) Waiting for Guffman
() House of 1000 Corpses
( ) Devils Rejects
(x) Mothman Prophecies
( ) American History X
( ) Three
Total so Far: 90
( ) The Jacket
() Kung Fu Hustle
() Shaolin Soccer
( ) Night Watch
(x)Monty Python and the Holy Grail
(x)Shaun Of the Dead
( ) Willard
Total so far: 93
( ) High Tension
( ) Club Dread
() Dawn Of the Dead
(x) Chronicle Of Narnia The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe
() 28 days later
( ) Orgazmo
( ) Phantasm
( ) Waterworld
Total so far: 96
(x) Kill Bill vol 1
(x) Kill Bill vol 2
() Mortal Kombat
() Wolf Creek
(x) Kingdom of Heaven
() The Hills Have Eyes
( ) I Spit on Your Grave aka the Day of the Woman
( ) The Last House on the Left
( ) Re-Animator
( ) Army of Darkness
Total so far: 99
(x) Star Wars Ep. I The Phantom Menace
(x)Star Wars Ep. II Attack of the Clones
(x) Star Wars Ep. III Revenge of the Sith
(x) Star Wars Ep. IV A New Hope
(x) Star Wars Ep. V The Empire Strikes Back
(x) Star Wars Ep. VI Return of the Jedi
( ) Ewoks Caravan Of Courage
( ) Ewoks The Battle For Endor
Total so far: 105
(x) The Matrix
(x) The Matrix Reloaded
(x) The Matrix Revolutions
(x) Evil Dead
( ) Evil Dead 2
(x) Team America: World Police
( ) Red Dragon
( ) Silence of the Lambs
( ) Hannibal
Blogfather Harvey over at Badexample
Cna yuo raed tihs? Olny 55 plepoe out of 100 can.
i cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno’t mtaetr in waht oerdr the ltteres in a wrod are, the olny iproamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it whotuit a pboerlm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Azanmig huh? yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt!
In other news, I have a Facebook account, and this was recently sent to my inbox:
"I know you from the afroman video "because i got high". MAN, was i high when i saw that! but i still know it´s you. if being a jedi was a real religion and you really get all those powers i would totally be a jedi! it´s the only resonable religion! the force better be with you!"
my answer: um, thanks, I think.
Update: We aren't in trouble anymore, and we can use the footage, though we've didn't put anything up showing who he is.
I've begun watching the Star Wars films in order, Episodes 1-6, and its got me thinking. I don't think the Empire is really all that evil, and low and behold, I found someone else who agrees with me, and even backs it up pretty well.
You can go read it here, or you can just scroll down a bit farther, as I've pasted it from the website to here.
Back to my other topic. I decided to move down to Georgia in order to basically start life afresh. I've felt for a long time that I like where I'm at as far as personal growth, but that the area I was in was filled with too many people who knew the old me, and would judge me based more on that than on what was truly myself. Then too there are a number of things about my past that are tied to Michigan that I regret, and felt that the easiest way to close the chapters on those parts of my life would be simply to relocate to a new area. More on what I'm actually doing down here later.
While a bit warmer than Michigan, the weather in Georgia has been great. There's been very few cloudy days, some great thunderstorms, and my neighbors are much quieter than the ones in my apartment complex in Grand Rapids. Believe it or not, I actually left the white trash in the apartment complex and now live around much better neighbors. Overall stress is down, though so is social activity, as I'm still getting to know the area. I don't yet know where all the groovy hip kids hang out ;-) .
Well, that's enough for now, look for something new on Friday or Saturday, as I feel like it.
It's a difficult leap to make--embracing Darth Vader and the Emperor over the plucky and attractive Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia--but a careful examination of the facts, sorted apart from Lucas's off-the-shelf moral cues, makes a quite convincing case.
First, an aside: For the sake of this discussion, I've considered only the history gleaned from the actual Star Wars films, not the Expanded Universe. If you know what the Expanded Universe is and want to argue that no discussion of Star Wars can be complete without considering material outside the canon, that's fine. However, it's always been my view that the comic books and novels largely serve to clean up Lucas's narrative and philosophical messes. Therefore, discussions of intrinsic intent must necessarily revolve around the movies alone. You may disagree, but please don't e-mail me about it.
If you don't know what the Expanded Universe is, well, uh, neither do I.
I. The Problems with the Galactic Republic
At the beginning of the Star Wars saga, the known universe is governed by the Galactic Republic. The Republic is controlled by a Senate, which is, in turn, run by an elected chancellor who's in charge of procedure, but
has little real power.
Scores of thousands of planets are represented in the Galactic Senate, and as we first encounter it, it is sclerotic and ineffectual. The Republic has grown over many millennia to the point where there are so many factions and disparate interests, that it is simply too big to be governable. Even the Republic's staunchest supporters recognize this failing: In "The Phantom Menace," Queen Amidala admits, "It is clear to me now that the Republic no longer functions." In "Attack of the Clones," young Anakin Skywalker observes that it simply "doesn't work."
The Senate moves so slowly that it is powerless to stop aggression between member states. In "The Phantom Menace" a supra-planetary alliance, the Trade Federation (think of it as OPEC to the Galactic Republic's United Nations), invades a planet and all the Senate can agree to do is call for an investigation.
Like the United Nations, the Republic has no armed forces of its own, but instead relies on a group of warriors, the Jedi knights, to "keep the peace." The Jedi, while autonomous, often work in tandem with the Senate, trying to smooth over quarrels and avoid conflicts. But the Jedi number only in the thousands--they cannot protect everyone.
What's more, it's not clear that they should be "protecting" anyone. The Jedi are Lucas's great heroes, full of Zen wisdom and righteous power. They encourage people to "use the Force"--the mystical energy which is the source of their power--but the truth, revealed in "The Phantom Menace," is that the Force isn't available to the rabble. The Force comes from midi-chlorians, tiny symbiotic organisms in people's blood, like mitochondria. The Force, it turns out, is an inherited, genetic trait. If you don't have the blood, you don't get the Force. Which makes the Jedi not a democratic militia, but a royalist Swiss guard.
And an arrogant royalist Swiss guard, at that. With one or two notable exceptions, the Jedi we meet in Star Wars are full of themselves. They ignore the counsel of others (often with terrible consequences), and seem honestly to believe that they are at the center of the universe. When the chief Jedi record-keeper is asked in "Attack of the Clones" about a planet she has never heard of, she replies that if it's not in the Jedi archives, it doesn't exist. (The planet in question does exist, again, with terrible consequences.)
In "Attack of the Clones," a mysterious figure, Count Dooku, leads a separatist movement of planets that want to secede from the Republic. Dooku promises these confederates smaller government, unlimited free trade, and an "absolute commitment to capitalism." Dooku's motives are suspect--it's not clear whether or not he believes in these causes. However, there's no reason to doubt the motives of the other separatists--they seem genuinely to want to make a fresh start with a government that isn't bloated and dysfunctional.
The Republic, of course, is eager to quash these separatists, but they never make a compelling case--or any case, for that matter--as to why, if they are such a freedom-loving regime, these planets should not be allowed to check out of the Republic and take control of their own destinies.
II. The Empire
We do not yet know the exact how's and why's, but we do know this: At some point between the end of Episode II and the beginning of
Episode IV, the Republic is replaced by an Empire. The first hint comes in "Attack of the Clones," when the Senate's Chancellor Palpatine is granted emergency powers to deal with the separatists. It spoils very little to tell you that Palpatine eventually becomes the Emperor. For a time, he keeps the Senate in place, functioning as a rubber-stamp, much like the Roman imperial senate, but a few minutes into Episode IV, we are informed that the he has dissolved the Senate, and that "the last remnants of the Old Republic have been swept away."
Lucas wants the Empire to stand for evil, so he tells us that the Emperor and Darth Vader have gone over to the Dark Side and dresses them in black.
But look closer. When Palpatine is still a senator, he says, "The Republic is not what it once was. The Senate is full of greedy, squabbling delegates. There is no interest in the common good." At one point he laments that "the bureaucrats are in charge now."
Palpatine believes that the political order must be manipulated to produce peace and stability. When he mutters, "There is no civility, there is only politics," we see that at heart, he's an esoteric Straussian.
Make no mistake, as emperor, Palpatine is a dictator--but a relatively benign one, like Pinochet. It's a dictatorship people can do business with. They collect taxes and patrol the skies. They try to stop organized crime (in the form of the smuggling rings run by the Hutts). The Empire has virtually no effect on the daily life of the average, law-abiding citizen.
Also, unlike the divine-right Jedi, the Empire is a meritocracy. The Empire runs academies throughout the galaxy (Han Solo begins his career at an Imperial academy), and those who show promise are promoted, often rapidly. In "The Empire Strikes Back" Captain Piett is quickly promoted to admiral when his predecessor "falls down on the job."
And while it's a small point, the Empire's manners and decorum speak well of it. When Darth Vader is forced to employ bounty hunters to track down Han Solo, he refuses to address them by name. Even Boba Fett, the greatest of all trackers, is referred to icily as "bounty hunter." And yet Fett understands the protocol. When he captures Solo, he calls him "Captain Solo." (Whether this is in deference to Han's former rank in the Imperial starfleet, or simply because Han owns and pilots his own ship, we don't know. I suspect it's the former.)
But the most compelling evidence that the Empire isn't evil comes in "The Empire Strikes Back" when Darth Vader is battling Luke Skywalker. After an exhausting fight, Vader is poised to finish Luke off, but he stays his hand. He tries to convert Luke to the Dark Side with this simple plea: "There is no escape. Don't make me destroy you. . . . Join me, and I will complete your training. With our combined strength, we can end this destructive conflict and bring order to the galaxy." It is here we find the real controlling impulse for the Dark Side and the Empire. The Empire doesn't want slaves or destruction or "evil." It wants order.
None of which is to say that the Empire isn't sometimes brutal. In Episode IV, Imperial stormtroopers kill Luke's aunt and uncle and Grand Moff Tarkin orders the destruction of an entire planet, Alderaan. But viewed in context, these acts are less brutal than they initially appear. Poor Aunt Beru and Uncle Owen reach a grisly end, but only after they aid the rebellion by hiding Luke and harboring two fugitive droids. They aren't given due process, but they are traitors.
The destruction of Alderaan is often cited as ipso facto proof of the Empire's "evilness" because it seems like mass murder--planeticide, even. As Tarkin prepares to fire the Death Star, Princess Leia implores him to spare the planet, saying, "Alderaan is peaceful. We have no weapons." Her plea is important, if true.
But the audience has no reason to believe that Leia is telling the truth. In Episode IV, every bit of information she gives the Empire is willfully untrue. In the opening, she tells Darth Vader that she is on a diplomatic mission of mercy, when in fact she is on a spy mission, trying to deliver schematics of the Death Star to the Rebel Alliance. When asked where the Alliance is headquartered, she lies again.
Leia's lies are perfectly defensible--she thinks she's serving the greater good--but they make her wholly unreliable on the question of whether or not Alderaan really is peaceful and defenseless. If anything, since Leia is a high-ranking member of the rebellion and the princess of Alderaan, it would be reasonable to suspect that Alderaan is a front for Rebel activity or at least home to many more spies and insurgents like Leia.
Whatever the case, the important thing to recognize is that the Empire is not committing random acts of terror. It is engaged in a fight for the survival of its regime against a violent group of rebels who are committed to its destruction.
III. After the Rebellion
As we all know from the final Star Wars installment, "Return of the Jedi," the rebellion is eventually successful. The Emperor is assassinated, Darth Vader abdicates his post and dies, the central governing apparatus of the Empire is destroyed in a spectacular space battle, and the rebels rejoice with their small, annoying Ewok friends. But what happens next?
(There is a raft of literature on this point, but, as I said at the beginning, I'm going to ignore it because it doesn't speak to Lucas's original intent.)
In Episode IV, after Grand Moff Tarkin announces that the Imperial Senate has been abolished, he's asked how the Emperor can possibly hope to keep control of the galaxy. "The regional governors now have direct control over territories," he says. "Fear will keep the local systems in line."
So under Imperial rule, a large group of regional potentates, each with access to a sizable army and star destroyers, runs local affairs. These governors owe their fealty to the Emperor. And once the Emperor is dead, the galaxy will be plunged into chaos.
In all of the time we spend observing the Rebel Alliance, we never hear of their governing strategy or their plans for a post-Imperial universe. All we see are plots and fighting. Their victory over the Empire doesn't liberate the galaxy--it turns the galaxy into Somalia writ large: dominated by local warlords who are answerable to no one.
Which makes the rebels--Lucas's heroes--an unimpressive crew of anarchic royals who wreck the galaxy so that Princess Leia can have her tiara back.
I'll take the Empire.
As I've recently become interested in studying the Civil War, yesterday my father and I went out to Gettysburg and toured the Battlefield, or atleast, the Museum located at the battlefield. The battlefield was closed due to a bad snow storm. A couple days previously the weather had been in the 80's. The museum was nice, and they have an electronic map which shows with lights the progress of the battle at Gettysburg, its interesting how close the CSA came to winning that battle.
After the Museum visit, we walked around downtown a looked in some of the shops, I bought a CSA bowie knife, which features R.E. Lee astride his horse on the handle, and on the blade lists the states of the Confederacy.
I found out that my truck shouldn't have been able to make a 9hr drive to Maryland. Part of the engine is self destructing by rubbing against something else, the water pump was barely hanging on, the muffler wasn't muffling . . . I was unaware of all of this. The only thing I knew was that the truck didn't sound right, the cure for which was turning the radio up and placing tape over the warning lights. Before you go into a panic, no I didn't really place tape over the warning lights, although I did turn the radio up (Engines are much louder without the muffler).
So now my truck is being fixed before I can drive it back to Michigan, luckily that shouldn't take too long.
This week, Agreeableness.
You are best described as:
TAKING CARE OF OTHERS AND TAKING CARE OF YOURSELF
Words that describe you:
A General Description of How You Interact with Others
You are important. So are other people, especially if they are in trouble. You have a tender heart, but you know how to establish and keep personal boundaries. You are empathetic and compassionate, but you also believe that it's best if people solve their own problems and learn to take care of themselves, if they are able.You are deeply moved by the needs of others, but you know that if you don't take good care of yourself, you'll wind up being of no use to anyone. So yours is a thoughtful compassion. You strive to be fair and sensible, taking care of others while also taking care of yourself.When someone really is in trouble, you like to collaborate with them toward a solution; they do their part, you do yours. You consider carefully, and respond in a sensible way; they do their part, and together you move through the difficulty. You seldom act impulsively; rather, when a problem arises, you take your time to think through the situation. This contemplative quality usually means that you'll arrive at a diplomatic solution, one that's fair for the other person and also fair to you. It's frequently a win/win situation.
Negative Reactions Others May Have Toward You
For people who are ruled by tender-hearted compassion, your more diplomatic response to problems might seem too cool, too focused on fairness and not filled enough with sympathy and selflessness. For them, when someone's life is on fire, what is needed is not collaboration but rescue. And the person who experiences their life on fire may resent the time you take to contemplate. "I need you, and I need you NOW! This isn't about fairness, it's about the fire." "All deliberate speed" may seem too deliberate and not fast enough, either to the more compassionate or to people in genuine trouble. At the other end of the spectrum of compassion, those who believe people should take care of themselves may find even your thoughtful sympathies too soft. They expect people, themselves included, to work their own way out of trouble. They are convinced that the helping hand you lend just fosters dependence and is not good for the development of character, either in you or in the person you assist.
Positive Responses Others May Have Toward You
Many people, perhaps the majority, will come to appreciate your balance as a compassionate person. The more they get to know you, the more they will admire your thoughtful compassion for others and its compliment in the sensible ways you take good care of yourself. Those whom you help will appreciate the way you leave them with their dignity by expecting them to collaborate in their own rescue. Those who are more tender-hearted will find in you a balance they lack; when they've run out of energy because they fail to take good care of themselves, you will still have enough compassion left to lift others out of trouble. Even the tough-hearted, those who believe people should solve their own problems, might come to admire your tenderness which they don't find in themselves. So the people you help will be grateful, and the people who see your balance between self and others will admire you. Certainly, balanced is not bad at all as a way to be known among your friends.
In other news, the redwings didn't win the superbowl, but maybe next year. I've begun teaching people at another swing venue how to do the deathdrop, and I've also decided that running barefoot through the snow is better done when the temperature is slightly above the freezing point.
In other news, I've finally got access to the sci-fi channel, something that I've lacked since moving to Grand Rapids, mainly because Comcast Cable is a complete rip off. I don't yet have internet back, I'm looking into DSL, and trying to find one where I don't need a pre-established phone line. I figure that since I've got a cell phone so I don't need a home phone. My personal life is finally starting to come back together for me, so my stress levels have reduced to defcon three.
Things in my family life aren't going so well however. My mother was diagnosed with cancer, and my grandfather has been in the hospital for the last week. My mom had already had surgery to take care of it, and started radiation, but they found more so they have to do more surgery, and they still aren't sure if they will need to do Kemo or not.
After that they finished with my paperwork, and I no longer need to get my findings checked over and co-signed.
While swing dancing Wednesday night, I started learning a move we have dubbed: "The Death Drop." I had done it improperly before with a much lighter and much shorter girl once before, and we got through it because I was able to muscle the whole thing. I figured I should learn the proper way. The description of the move is as follows: Boost the girl up so that she straddles your right shoulder, you both grip eachother's wrists, she then twists and slides down your side face first towards the ground (you have to help manuever her to the side of your body, otherwise she slides down your front and gets stuck), you lean back at the end, and she pops up. video (the video is sideways, as the site owner never got around to fixing it, but you can see the move)
Pictures of the place can be views here.