I'm Exhausted 
Wednesday, December 27, 2006, 12:18 AM
For a few weeks I was forced up to the bridge where, in accordance with the EOIT PQS, I made a feeble attempt to complete a partial OOD qualification. It feels good to be back in a regular engine room rotation, back in the sweat, grease, heat, and casual atmosphere of the engine room. We have a job to do down here, and we're going to make sure it gets done; there's a certain comfort in that.
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We Put Salt Water In Our Fuel Tanks 
Saturday, December 23, 2006, 09:16 AM
... and we did it on purpose. It's called ballasting, and we have to do it to maintain stability when we start running low on fuel. Right now we're at about 43% of our fuel capacity. That may sound fine for an automobile, but we still have several days before we pull back into port call.

Ballasting isn't reall that bad -- it's getting rid of that fuel and water mixture that poses the real problem. For some reason you're not allowed to simply pump it over the side.
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Today's Core Value: HONOR 
Friday, December 15, 2006, 04:54 PM
What do you do when your boss blatantly lies to your face, or even better, in an email? What do you do when this keep happening? I swear, the man must think we don't talk to each other. You can't tell me one thing and then tell my roommmate something else; that isn't a very good way to get away with lying.
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Drunk Driving 
Saturday, November 25, 2006, 01:31 PM
Maybe I'm just making assumptions, but this appears to be yet another reason against driving drunk. Somehow, I'm guessing that isn't why the good Rev. Al Sharpton is interested.
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Holiday Madness 
Thursday, November 23, 2006, 10:40 PM
I just returned from a delightful Thanksgiving dinner with my parents. The streets and highways, which were eerily deserted when I drove to Albany at 5:30 p.m. were packed with fellow Thanksgiving-returnees. I quickly realized that many of them were, unlike me, most likely drunk; an accident I passed in the center lane on the freeway deepened my suspicions. The toll plaza was back up clear to the split (quite a ways and significantly worse than the morning commute, for those of your not familiar with the Bay Bridge), which made me glad that I wasn't heading back to San Francisco. It took me a while to figure out why the traffic was so much heavier heading into the city, but I'm guessing that since people's homes are more expensive in SF people opted to have Thanksgiving at their East Bay friends' larger houses.

When I pulled into the shopping center parking lot behind my apartment building, the formerly empty parking stalls were now packed with cars. CompUSA, it appears, decided to kick off the holiday shopping maddness a little early; the store was packed with customers.
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For Your Consideration 
Tuesday, November 21, 2006, 06:22 PM
For Your Consideration, which I'm not even going to link to here because it's so horrible. I will never get those two hours of my life back. It's really hard to think of something that would have been less productive that watching that movie. It's a movie about a movie that has a lot of bad acting in it. Bad acting can be funny up to a point (very little of this is), but when 60% of your screen time is horrible acting, it can be difficult to salvage.

I've found that if I see a movie on the big screen, I usually enjoy it. Whether it's simply the atmosphere or the awesome picture, I'm easily seduced by movies in movie theaters. With movies going for $10 a pop, and with downloading them off the internet a very real possibility to me, Babel and For Your Consideration have really shaken my faith and my desire to attend the theater.
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New Theme 
Saturday, November 18, 2006, 03:12 PM
Yes, there is a new theme. I updated my blogging software and switched over to the "modern" theme from what I believe was called "classic" or something. The default color schemes are remarkably bland, even to my design-oblivious eye. I want a clear design that's as cool as the ones they have over on Blogger, but I don't want to give up the freedom of running my own domain.

At the time of writing there is a lot of sky blue on this page. Hopefully it will be gone by the time you read this.
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My Peers and I 
Thursday, November 16, 2006, 06:01 PM
From David Brooks' column on Borat today:
Thereís also that distinct style of young personís snobbery. Young people havenít accomplished much yet so they can only elevate themselves by endlessly celebrating their own superior sensibilities.
Actually, I find myself agreeing with him.
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Monday, November 13, 2006, 11:06 AM
I saw Babel last night with high expectations: it received good ratings on both IMDB and Rotten Tomatoes. The cinematography was excellent, the soundtrack was moving, the dialogue was convincing, and the acting was quite decent; unfortunately none could salvage an absolutely horrible script.

Apparently someone sat down and said, what we really need is a movie with a disjointed collection of characters who we don't get the opportunity to know or care about, who have a series of horrible things happen to them. The movie was like a slow motion human train wreck. Very quickly the audience is able to figure out that every pleasant moment is only placed there so that when the writer smashes the characters' lives to pieces their pain is all the more jarring. All this havoc is wreaked through a combination of callous indifference, negligent incompetence, bureaucratic indifference, and foolish decisions on the part of the characters as well as outside forces. Nobody in the movie deserves what happens to them, and I suppose that's supposed to form some "deep though" that is part of the point of the movie. In reality, though, Babel is simply a two hour saga of human misery that tosses out some cheap commentaries regarding language barriers and global connections as if they're supposed to excuse the film for lacking anything regarding a coherent storyline.
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Tuesday, November 7, 2006, 11:06 PM
From the NYT:

Anyone out of high school forced to watch more than an hour of ďLaguna BeachĒ might possibly feel the urge to beat themselves about the head with a large stick.
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