Skunkgal - Too Much Skunk In Your Junk

Archive for July, 2009

i am not good at compound interest

i’m trying to cram for a math waiver exam tonight and i realize how not natural this is for me. i used to think i liked math, assigning a hyper-rational, equilibrium-is-good quality to it. “i like math because it’s beautiful!”

but now i’m pretty sure i liked math because my ego and competitiveness dictated it. i liked math because i was in the 99th percentile at it, not because it represented balance and art or whatever math majors say. now that the majority of people around me have actually done it in the past 7 years and i hover around the 72nd percentile, math is looking pretty sucky. not to mention that business math seems to linger on concepts that i never fully grasped (logs, e, etc.), i’m thinking this waiver exam is not going to waive much of anything. at least i understand calculus.

an observation on being ‘skilled’

since labor issues keep coming up in my daily readings, and they simultaneously rub up against some existential thoughts i’ve been having about my education (past and future), i’ve been finding it kind of sad that i’m considered “skilled labor” when i indeed have very few useful skills.

i just read the road by cormac mccarthy, set on earth after some anonymous apocalypse, and after some reflection on my “skills,” i’m pretty sure i’d die pretty early. post-apocalyptic media is supposed to make me think, “how would i react in this do-or-die situation?” and i like to imagine myself the clever or brave or calm one. but when i really think about it, the chances are i’d be one of the people who’d die in the initial attack/event (i live in the city and relatively near the coasts). and if not, i don’t even know how to start a fire or fix a car or spot clean water, so i’ll probably die from dehydration or salmonella poisoning. my only chance is if i have will smith by my side.

summer tv drama

i am waging an epic war against my tivo right now. apparently, if your cable provider says you need a cable box to receive channels, you also need to be mildly autistic to install a tivo.

what’s most frustrating is that it doesn’t have to be this way.
1. maybe i’m getting a fancy service right now, but in dc i got the same # of channels and i didn’t need a cable box. why do i need one now? i have some on demand nonsense, but i didn’t ask for it. i wanted the absolute most basic that would allow me to get TNT and USA. that is all.
2. ok so i have a cable box. then why do i need 4 extra parts (not including the cable and tivo boxes) to make this happen? if this weren’t CRAZY WORLD, i imagine it should only take one extra coaxial cable. it should be look like wall->wire->cable box->wire->tivo->wire->tv. instead i have to draw out the layout by hand (and i did it wrong anyway; missing one wire connecting the tivo to the tv):


or if you prefer the real thing:


turns out i’m missing one of the many connectors i need (shocker), and to make it more awesome, it’s custom-made by tivo. i also spent $5 to ship a stupid $7 wire that is probably the size of a twizzler.

no fear, i’ve still been watching tv anyway. like a glutton for punishment, i finished off the rest of kings on hulu and am just plain depressed that it’s been canceled. i still highly recommend; just treat it like a long miniseries and try not to think of what could have been.

i caught the first two episodes of true blood and am astonished that people watch this show. i’ve heard that the 2nd and 3rd seasons are different and better, but i don’t think i can suffer through more of this for an uncertain payoff. buffy was pretty rough the first season, but at least i liked the characters. these people on true blood are brutal, and not in a good way. and a note to HBO: we get it. people have sex and you want to be the king of verisimilitude or whatever. but when you have naked people humping all the time, i start to think that you just ran out of interesting story and decided to keep our attention by showing us a lot of bare ass. OVER IT.

i’d also like to acknowledge that i’ve seen one episode of gene simmons family jewels and could not have enjoyed myself more. it’s the male rocker version of kimora: life in the fab lane, which i love because that lady is crazy and fierce. incidentally, they have the same last name, but i’m pretty sure they’re not related.

next up: i plan to finish season 1 of dollhouse. i was so sure that the show would get canceled that i gave up and stopped watching after 7 episodes, even though everyone said it got better. turns out, it lives on, and now i have to catch-up. and fox, i’m still mad at you for axing the sarah connor chronicles.

why i fear the roethlisberger rape allegation

celebrity rape trials make people say stupid things. they create media shit shows. and no matter the outcome or the truth, all the other rape victims out there come out as losers.

celebrity rape trials are times of great cognitive dissonance, inspiring people (usually rabid fans) to repeat damaging rape tropes (in hopes of defending their living jesus): she’s lying. she’s crazy. she wants revenge. she wants attention. she was asking for it. and my favorite: so-and-so can have any woman he wants; why would he rape someone?

maybe this is just the fringe, but it’s there. and maybe it’s the truth in one case or another (duke lacrosse. UGHHHHHHHHH), but for the majority of cases, none of those scenarios is usually true.

rape has a similar rate of false reports when compared to other crimes. that is, people lie about rape about as often as they lie about being robbed, attacked, etc., which is to say, not that often. and lets not forget that rapists’ actions have nothing to do w/ the scarcity of sex, and everything to do with control, power, and misogyny.

but reality has never stopped the masses from creating a damaging atmosphere. i really don’t care about the one bonehead who says something ignorant in the checkout line. i do care when victims hear it, and start believing it. this is assuredly the start of another sad chapter where just about everyone loses.

quick stop in dc

before i move to philly on friday. omfg.

newport beach is pretty and all, but it’s nice to be back in dc where …

the plants are green
the girls are pale
the boys are flabby
the hours of happiness are intense
the food is greasy
and chipotle is the best “mexican” you can find.

i’ll miss it here.

take that, macroeconomics

macroeconomics has been taking a beating recently, with critics saying “that macro and financial economists helped cause the crisis, that they failed to spot it, and that they have no idea how to fix it.”

macroeconomics was the only advanced placement test i bombed — and maybe it’s because my 11th-grade self subconsciously knew it actually made no sense. i was ahead of my time.

damn, a lot happened when i was gone

is it just me or did a lot of news happen between july 1-11? or maybe b/c my access to news was so sparse, little news seemed a lot more important than it actually was.

some highlights of the week and half past:

1. GM emerges out of bankruptcy: well that was fast.
2. palin resigns: well that was fast.
3. micheal jackson had a funeral: proving that LA and california are bankrupt, maybe morally but definitely financially.
4. marion barry got arrested for stalking his ex: he is batshit crazy and a disgrace, but we already knew that.
5. uighurs riot and kill in a western chinese province: most people still do not know who uighurs are, except maybe they can pronounce it now. or not.

Many English speakers pronounce it as /ˈwiː.ɡər/ but the pronunciation /ujˈɡur/ is closer to native

question, if “uighur” is pronounced “uj’gur” in the native tongue, why do english speakers pronounce it “wi:ger”, which is so much further from the phonetics? white people fail.
6. steve mcnair is killed: sad, but the whole 20yo mistress is kind of awkward. she can’t even legally drink.
7. al franken is now a US senator: officially making minnesota the most awesome state for politics ever. the body ftw!

that’s all i can remember right now. did i miss anything?

going to the philippines

blogging will be light since snark and derision don’t work so well in third-world countries.

i suppose i could be sympathetic (poverty and corruption. how sad) or appalled (poverty and corruption! omg!), but neither tone suits me well.

i’ll be back stateside on the 11th. holla.