Sunday, June 26, 2005

Back from Mexico

Wow, how it really been a week since I last wrote?!

Well the weekend is over and so is Oasis. I am sitting at the computer doing stuff while I wait for my laundry. Once I finish I am going to work on my IMT stuff.

Oasis was fun. The dance party last night was boring, but overall the trip was fun. The weather was nice and sunny, just like I prayed for. But I did get sunburned, which is no fun. Ouch! Mostly only on my face, though. Even my arms are fine, and I wore short-sleeved shirts all weekend.

I brought $60 for spending money and spent almost all of it. I bought a camera (that looks like a disposable but it's actually reusable...I'm not going to reuse it though) and spent $25 on a nice sequined wrap from one of the local vendors. There was a guy selling wraps, a lady selling dresses, a guy selling candy and fruit, and a guy selling jewelry. I made the mistake of expressing interest in some opal pendants and then deciding not to buy them. The jewelry guy said this one pendant was $20, then he offered it at $18 and then $13. I only had $11, and I still needed money to go horseback riding, so I ran away from the guy so he would stop heckling me. The wrap guy wanted $25 for the wrap, so that's what I gave him. Everybody told me I was nuts. The idea is to try to bargain for a lower price, kind of like in markets in many African countries. But I didn't. After all, the thing was nice, tasseled, AND it had sequins on it. But I did feel for the rest of the day that I had been overcharged, only cause people said so. I definitely didn't want to buy a candied apple or a mango, just in case I didn't like them. I would have to throw them away down there, rather than saving them, because you can't bring fruit across the border for fear of bugs. (There was a warning poster for Mediterranean fruit flies at the border crossing, in a place thousands of miles away from the Mediterranean...hmm).

I'm too tired to right any more. Bye...

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Finding Neverland

I finally saw Finding Neverland cause my parents rented it from Netflix. It's an awesome movie!!!! Johnny Depp is awesome, as he always seems to be, and Kate Winslet is really good too. I saw Johnny Depp in Pirates of the Caribbean with Orlando Bloom and in Chocolat with Juliette Binoche. He's going to star in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory this summer too, which I am definitely going to go see cause I love that book. This movie is supposed to be more like the book than the old musical Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Although that one is good too.

My list of movies to see this summer: Star Wars Episode III, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Fantastic 4, Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D, Herbie Fully Loaded, Bewitched, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, Howl's Moving Castle (Hayao Miyazaki's latest film), War of the Worlds, The Pink Panther (that I have to see...The Pink Panther with Steve Martin and Beyoncé...should be funny!!), Madagascar and The Brothers Grimm, plus probably more that I can't think of.

I missed a lot of movies last summer because I was too focused on working 6 days a week at my dead-end job in fast food.

My brother thinks I'm crazy to want to go see the Sharkboy and Lavagirl movie. But I want to see it because (1) It's directed by the same guy who did Spy Kids, and those were good, and (2) I've never seen a movie in 3D before.

I'm going to try to see a movie or two before I leave next week. It would have to be Wednesday afternoon or Thursday morning though since I don't get paid till Tuesday. I do want to see Star Wars Episode III before it's not at the theaters anymore (although I doubt that'll happen soon). I think Howl's Moving Castle might be out now so I should catch that soon since it's unlikely to be there long.

But about Finding Neverland. It was great. I'm going to rewatch it with the commentary. I like to do that on DVD's.

What I really liked about it is its theme, about how you shouldn't grow up too fast and how even grownups (like Barrie) can still use their imagination. I sincerely believe in that. Yet part of me is telling me that I'm too old for fairyland and all that. Balderdash!! I'm a writer, and a writer without an imagination is like the monist's view of the human: a body without a soul.

If I ever grow too old for fairyland, I would rather die right then than go on living a non-creative life. In a world permeated by rationalism, we need fantasy, because, whether we're Christian, atheist, Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Jewish, or Shinto, we all know somehow in our inmost being that this universe is not all there is, that there is something outside it, something good. Since our human minds cannot grasp the idea of heaven and of God completely (as Paul wrote, "We see through a glass darkly"), fantasy and creativity is a way for us to take hold of some of that divine essence which we cannot fully understand. It is when we abuse that, and substitute fantasy too much for our own lives, however, that things go wrong. Then we are delusional, and fit for the mental hospital.

Now I admit that I spend more time with the characters of my mind's eye than with my real-life friends. But I try to balance it out. I have no desire to be anti-social; after all, I work in retail now and interact with a lot more customers, so I can't afford to be anti-social. I just have always been an introvert, more comfortable when by myself. Sure, I can be pretty outgoing, but in most social settings I am not comfortable.

It's like I told my coworker Chris the other day. It's like I have two is shy, the other outgoing; one is rash, the other reserved; one is willing to take risks, the other insists on planning everything out beforehand to ensure success. One could do just as well without computers and such, and is satisfied with books, while the other leans more towards surfing the Net, watching movies and TV, and playing video games. It's all very confusing.

I am glad that I have somewhere to say this in writing. It's so much easier to write than to say out loud.

In other news, my summer class starts tommorrow, and unfortunately, I wasn't able to get the books yet, but the first few exercises aren't due till next week anyways. Phew.

Tales of Symphonia is going well. I am heading to the Seal of Wind, I think. I just didn't do the windmill puzzle yet that you have to solve to get to the seal itself.

Okay, bye for now.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Video game is going well

Well Genis finally learned Aqua Edge. Yay.

I am doing things a bit differently than the first time. Like for when you first go to the Palmacosta Human Ranch, I chose to go back to the city and deal with Dorr first. Thus I was virtually crushed by Kilia, the boss of that part, because I lacked the experience I could've gained if I had destroyed the ranch first.

So I went out of the city and wandered around for a while to strengthen up, healing with cooking or by going to the House of Salvation. I wound up having like 11,000 gald at the end. Nice.

Right before we reached the city again on the way back, Genis learned Stalagmite, that rock move that you first see during the first fight against Botta at the Sylvarant Base. This helped immensely later on in the fight against Kilia. I also stocked up on Life Bottles since her lightning and dark attacks tend to kill you, and on Orange Gels to up Tech Points for everybody, especially Colette and Kratos -- Colette for her Angel Feathers move, which is strong against Kilia, and Kratos for his First Aid move. I also tried to keep my and Genis's TP up, especially Genis's, since Stalagmite uses 20 TP. When I needed to, I backed off from the fray to use an Apple Gel (which heals 30% of your HP) then rushed back into things. I managed to launch two Unison Attacks as well, which is hard to pull off during a boss battle like this. I set it up pretty well. I had Lloyd using Fierce Demon Fang and Kratos using Double Demon Fang, and then I paired up Genis and Colette with Lightning and Pow Hammer respectively, because this would trigger the Compound Unison Attack Mjollnir.

Unison Attacks are not always hard to execute. Once you have Sheena in your party (which happens later in the game) it becomes easier to fill the Unison Attack gauge faster, especially once she is able to summon more than just Corinne. Her "seal" attacks are powerful and thus are more likely to succeed, which ups the gauge.

I wonder how I will get a road pass for Hakonesia Peak now that I did things the other way with Dorr. If you do the ranch first, he gives you one. But if you don't, he gives you a Card Key and a passcode for a side entrance to the ranch. Maybe you can get one from Neil (the assistant Governor-General) or from Magnius?

Beats me.

In less than a week I go to Oasis! Yay!

I am going to bring my sleeping bag, beach chair, and tent to college group this week for them to load on the trailer. Then I will take a suitcase and then use my laundry bag to hold Mumfy (my stuffed penguin...yes I still sleep with a stuffed animal) and my pillow (or pillows...I sleep with 2), and then I'll have something to put my laundry in as well. I will also need to bring a tote bag or my backpack to carry things I want on the bus. Maybe I will buy a new tote for this occasion. If I can find one, that is. The ones at work aren't what I want.

Okay bye.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Got a tent and all

After visiting two Wal-Marts and a Target Greatland, I finally found an affordable tent (we don't really have one I can use at home). It's a backpacking tent, but it sleeps 2-3 people so it should be fine. Plus it comes in a rather large bag with straps, not in a teeny-weeny bag like the one I used last year. Nice.

I did find a beach chair at one of the Wal-Marts for $6.94. It's a nice one too, the kind with the fabric over the steel frame that have armrests, usually with one or two cup holders in them (mine has only one, but that's ok) that you can fold up and carry in a matching drawstring bag the length of a long sausage. The problem was I had to lug it around everywhere, including to the other Wal Mart, where an employee put a sticker on it so I wouldn't set off the alarm when I went out. The lady at the exit did ask for my receipt since I was carrying it on my shoulder, but I told her I didn't buy it there, and that the other lady had put a sticker on the thing. As I went out, I thought, " I would steal something this big." I mean, that's stupid. You can't hide it in anything. Besides even if I wanted to, I would not steal something from a place with an alarm thing at the door because I would get caught and get in major trouble. Not to mention that "thou shalt not steal" is one of the Ten Commandments, which I try to keep as best as I can.

I don't like taking the bus when I shop for things. Then I have to lug my purchases around with me, if they won't fit in my bag or backpack. This was especially a drag when I worked at Wendy's and would go to the Wal-Mart over there (which is the first one I went to today) before work, because there wasn't really a breakroom to speak of there, much less anywhere to put one's stuff. Besides, you couldn't be sure someone wouldn't take your stuff. One of your coworkers could, or even a customer if he or she could somehow get back there (there was an open area, where at some places there is a door or a counter extension thing that is kind of like the things on some tables that can fold down when you don't need to have a lot of people sit there, between the wall and the counter, where we went in and out from behind the counter to the dining room, bathroom, or any other place in front of the counter). Where I work now, we keep our stuff in the breakroom, which is behind a door marked "employees only" that can only be opened with a key. Only we employees have the key to open the breakroom, which also works for the door that leads to the stockroom and office area. If there was a public bathroom in the place, the key would probably work for that too. (We don't, by the way; most people think we do, I guess, because I have had to answer the "do you have a bathroom/restroom" question a gazillion times in the 5 weeks I have been there...the question seems to be most frequently asked by mothers with small children).

I am going to re-start Tales of Symphonia again. I don't know what's going on, but Genis is just not learning Aqua Edge!! Maybe it's because I put him to not attack at a certain point while trying to earn the "Lone General" title for Lloyd or because I went for the free friendship fortunes with the Triet fortuneteller, although this did not affect any of the other characters (even though the second time she said Kratos didn't care much for me at all). I didn't do those things the first time I played, and Genis learned Aqua Edge. Albeit he learned it after we got beat by the Fire Seal guardian and I went out to train. But still.

I did get a pleasant surprise in that I got to see some dialogue I missed the first time I fought Exebula (a monster the Desians set on you in Iselia). Maybe because the first time I didn't beat it the first time around.

I am anxious to finish the first disc and move on to the second disc. Despite the fact that I read the whole player's guide and know most of the plot already, there were some things that aren't in the guide. Like Botta. If he isn't a Desian (as suggested by one of Botta's soldier's reactions to Lloyd calling them Desians at the Martel Temple, by one of Forcystus's soldier's reactions to a similar accusation by Genis when the Desians attack Iselia, and by Kvar's annoyed attitude towards news of Botta and co. being nearby when you first go to the Asgard Human Ranch) then what the heck is he? And why are Botta and co. so afraid of Kratos? Botta retreats because of him when he first appears at the Martel Temple. The turqouise-haired guy at Sylvarant Base also flees the scene because "our plans will be ruined if he sees me." Since the guy has already been seen by Lloyd, the implication is that he means Kratos. (After all, Genis isn't much to be afraid of at this point, and Botta specifically says "the Chosen's group has infiltrated the facility," and Lloyd and Genis aren't official members of the "Chosen's group" at this point -- the initial "Chosen's group" was meant to include Colette, Kratos, and Raine, as indicated at the beginning of the game).

More later. Bye.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Pac Man and TV

There was an article in Yahoo Health News today about how certain TV shows affect kids' body image. Here's the link:

In other news, Pac Man, the well-loved Namco video game icon, turns 25 this month. Here's the scoop:

As for me, not much to report. Oasis is next weekend. Yay. I have to find a beach chair this week so I can take it to group this Sunday for them to take down to Baja. Ditto on a tent, if we can't find a suitable one among what we have.

I think I'll take a suitcase rather than a duffel this year cause (1) people do do that for Oasis (I've seen them) (2) it would be WAYYY easier to lug from the bus area (especially if I take the wheeled one) and (3) It would be easier to keep my stuff organized. The downside is that the duffel I have I used the past 2 summers for Oasis has my name on it and the suitcases don't. Course, I could always make a tag using paper and our handy-dandy portable laminater.

I re-started Tales of Symphonia. Well I had gotten a little ways in and then Genis leveled up to Level 8 without learning his Level 7 attack, Aqua Edge. So I deleted the file and started over, cause I had no other choice. I am following the guide to the letter this time so I don't miss any side quests, etc.

I am trying to get all the titles too. Some you get automatically from game events or by default at the beginning (like "Drifting Swordsman" for Lloyd, "Fledgling Chosen" for Colette, and "Archaeological Mania" for Raine) but others require that you do something in battle or whatever. Like if you talk to Raine at the schoolhouse after completing the Martel Temple, Genis earns the title "Brotherly Love." Battle ones usually come from attacking a certain number of times (like "Combo Newbie" for Lloyd) or doing something else during battle. I knew from the first time I played that Colette has a couple battle titles that are easy to get, if you do things right. "Self-control" comes when she doesn't use any Special Attacks, and "Don't Run!" comes when she doesn't run during battle. Both require you to control Colette during battle. The best way to make this work is to put her on Manual, since I can't seem to control her using Semi-Auto. Then put Lloyd (the default player-controlled character) temporarily on Auto so he attacks by himself. Go to Strat in the menu (press Y to bring it up) and set Colette's Skill/Magic strategy to "Hold Position" and her movement strategy to "Move Freely." Now enter battle. The others will begin to fight. Basically don't touch anything (unless you need to heal up with an item or something) and Colette won't move or attack. If you did it right, you should earn both titles at the end of the battle; if you only earn one, then try again in the next battle, or check the strategy screen.

Enough said. Bye.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

New planet found

Scientists just found a rocky planet orbiting a star 15 light years away. It is similar to Earth, but like Venus, it is too hot to sustain life.

Check it out! Go to and scroll down to Science. It's the top story today.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Good at "W.i.t.c.h." game

I was just playing "W.i.t.c.h. Team Rescue" at Jetix's site for "W.i.t.c.h" ( I played three times. My scores were good. First game my score was 57950, second time it was 63000 and the third time it was 62100. The game's premise is pretty simple. Two of the "W.i.t.c.h." team members are trapped in the castle in Meridian. You have to save them. Then you have to fight Cedric (one of the main bad guys; he is technically human but he can morph into a long, scary snake) using all the team's powers (air, water, absolute energy, fire, and earth--this is the order your characters are lined up). If you beat him you win.

The trick in fighting Cedric is to read the instructions given to you beforehand. Hay Lin, with the power of air, can disperse poisonous gas; Irma, with the power of water, can put out fire; Will (the leader), with the power of absolute energy (in the Heart of Candracar), can put out black portals; Taranee, with the power of fire, can put out water bubbles; and Cornelia, with the power of earth, can break up the brick wall pieces Cedric throws at you.

After you fend off Cedric's attack, he will be vulnerable for a few seconds. Hit him with another energy blast (aim and fire with a mouse click) and then his HP (shown at the top) will go down. Just get close to the end and then he will disappear. Then you win.

Not much else to say today. Some days I wonder why I even bother posting here.

I went to school after work to get my summer class books, but the bookstore was closed (when did they start closing at 4?) so I went to the mall instead. I bought a DVD of The Great Escape for my dad for Father's Day and then, after wandering around Waldenbooks (soon to be known as "Borders Express," according to the lady that checked me out...good grief) I bought a copy of the Odyssey (the poem by Homer) and a small Signet Classic version of The Merchant of Venice (by Shakespeare).

In bad news, I totally messed up one of the knees in my pantihose. It's totally run through. *sigh*

The good news is, I don't have to get up quite so early tomorrow, because they changed my shift at work, since they're shorthanded for the closing shift. So instead of opening, I'm closing, which means I don't have to be in till noon, rather than 9:45 (we open at 10). They informed me of this tonight and made sure it was ok. My boss at my other job wouldn't ever have done that. Nice...

I was thinking I would try to get my books tomorrow, or Wednesday since I'm closing then too, but why get up early (I have to take the bus everywhere right now)? I'll probably go Thursday when I'm off work.

Ok I think I'll go get out of my work clothes. Good night.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Ellion's a princess, I can't watch "The Hiding Place," Christian book on Harry Potter, and starting over with the Memory Card

I watched W.i.t.c.h. this morning for the first time in a long time. It turns out that Cornelia's friend, Ellion, is the lost princess of Meridian (Metamoor in the books), the sister of the evil prince Phobos. This is kinda weird. You kind of expected Will, as leader of the Guardians, to be the lost princess, but then again she doesn't bear any physical resemblance to Phobos, and Ellion does.

I was just watching The Hiding Place. For some reason, I can't concentrate on it. I am fine watching Holocaust movies but not this one. Don't know why.

I just read Looking For God in Harry Potter, a book that talks about the Christian things in Harry Potter. Very good.

The Memory Card seems to be working, but it still wouldn't save, so I had to erase everything...sigh.

Friday, June 10, 2005

not much to say

I had trouble sleeping last night after watching Joseph. So I kept on reading this C.S. Lewis biography I bought. Then I went back to bed.

I am fascinated by how much C.S. Lewis and I are alike. I would very much have liked to meet him.

Oh say I took the Poetry IQ Test at this poetry site. I got a 10 out of 11. Here's the details, from the result e-mail I got:

"Your General Poetic Knowledge Score is 10 out of a possible 11...

8-11 You have an excellent grasp of poetic form, structure, a! nd techn ique. People at this level have generally taken advanced-level study in literature or have completed advanced poetry courses. They have often spent considerable time writing, developing their own poetic "voice," and their own techniques. People at this level, particularly if they can apply their knowledge of poetic form and structure to their own work, are considered among the most talented of poetic artists."

There was an interesting article that my home page linked to. It's about if anyone has succeeded in cheating on a game show. Check it out here:

That's all. I'm going to go back to watching Spaceballs now.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

My new look!

For anyone who bothers to visit my blog, you'll notice I changed the template! This also solved the "post is not on the top of the page" problem, which is nice.

I also changed the links on the side of the page by going in and editing the HTML. I wasn't able to play with the sidebar color, though, cause I have no idea what code governs that.

I linked to Generator Power (my website), Fiction Express, and to Anime Angels, a e-magazine that I am on the staff for (although I haven't written anything yet...I'm still feeling my way around).

Nothing much to report. I've reached Level 3 in the Code Lyoko Club, the members' thing of the Code LYOKO website. I have no idea how this happened cause I hadn't been to the site in ages. I did go back recently because they sent me an e-mail saying I had reached Level 3 and to check my secret album (a special members-only area for myself with pictures and videos I have earned for my participation).

I've been playing my Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon GBA game, and even though I did get to Level 4 of the city today (an accomplishment) it's still really, really hard, and it's tough to keep track of the passwords needed to continue your game because they change.

Well, I'm going to go get ready to go get my paycheck.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Not much to tell

Hi there. Like the title suggests, there's not much to tell.

I took a test that I got a link to from someone else's blog. It asks how normal you are. My result:

You Are 50% Normal
(Somewhat Normal)

Image hosted by

While some of your behavior is quite normal...
Other things you do are downright strange
You've got a little of your freak going on
But you mostly keep your weirdness to yourself


I have to work 12:00-8:15 today, the first time I've closed on a Monday. Ditto for Friday except I start at 12:30. Wednesday I have to close too, but that's typical. Well, I am working full-time now. At least I get tomorrow off. Plus I get paid tommorrow. Yay.

I need to get a Father's Day present (I already got the card) plus maybe some stuff for Oasis, our college group retreat. Perhaps film for the camera, or maybe disposables. (I stink at getting the film out of cameras). My own beach chair. Maybe a new notebook. And I may bring my GBA so I will have to bring the charger, unless I charge it up right before, then it might last. I think it's built to last 18 hours of constant play before the battery dies...hmm.

I may have to buy a tent too if we can't find the one we have at home. Joy.

Well, I have to get dressed and stuff before the bus shows up at my door in about half an hour, plus my friend Tammy just e-mailed me (I get a little pop-up alert when I have a new e-mail) so I'm going to read her e-mail.

Oh hey, I passed stats!!! Yay!!!!!

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Memory card blues

My memory card is damaged. My Game Cube informed me of this problem this morning. According to customer service at Nintendo, it's not a fixable problem. You just have to replace the card. Boo-hoo....

I have to start Tales of Symphonia all over, and I wasn't even halfway through it. I was almost halfway through it. Oh well, I guess it's all right. I can make sure everybody learns their attacks, especially Kratos since I may use him against Kvar again if he insists again. I will find all the items and all the skit points. I will make sure to do all the side quests (well, actually I've been pretty good at that, but I will have Colette name the dog at the Iselia House of Salvation at the beginning instead of waiting till post-Tower of Mana when she can't do it).


Oh well.