December 31, 2003

Desperation and The Regulators

From Stephen King's Desperation:

"...Sane men and women don't believe in God. That was all, that was flat. You can't say it from the pulpit, because the congregation'd run you out of town, but it's the truth. God isn't about reason; God is about faith and belief. God says, 'Sure take away the safety net. And when that's gone, take away the tightrope, too.'"
--Reverend Martin, a slightly alcoholic preacher

Desperation and The Regulators, both by King, are two very interesting books. The easiest way to explain how the two books work together is by calling them parallel dimensions. They involve the same characters, but the characters have different fates in the story. The characters themselves might have changed some as well (i.e. age changes, children become parents and parents become children, someone mentioned in passing in one story becomes a major character in the other). The storylines, while slightly similar, are also dramatically different.

The books themselves are obviously two very individual pieces of literature. Desperation is much more of a spiritual book than The Regulators,while the focus in The Regulators is apparently the story-telling (think almost Quentin Tarantino-like).

All in all, the two books combine to create a unique literary experience that I would recommend to less squeamish readers.

Posted by Randy at 03:21 AM

December 29, 2003

Why Can't I Just Be Bored?

Drama, drama, drama. Next time I think about blogging about how boring it is here at the house I am going to hurt myself. Let me see what I can say without naming names (in case anyone from my town other than Katy reads this).

Shortly after I woke up, my mother comes home from a couple of errands and starts to make phone calls. From her side of the convesation I soon learn that a girl (age 16, I think) who was one of my sister's closest friends is over two weeks late for her period and believes she is pregnant. The girl's father doesn't yet know about it, but a lot of other people do and it is only a matter of time before word gets far enough around town that he learns about it.

Wait, it gets better. I learn a couple of phone calls later that the son (age 18, I think) of some of our close family friends is the father. Not only has he also not told his parents about this but he also has a girlfriend who he really likes (reporting what I know, don't ask why he was fooling around because I can't answer). My parents decide they want to talk to this kid so they call him, tell him to come over to our house, and send me to another town--because, you know, if I'm not at the house for this conversation it won't make things feel weird between me and this kid later [/sarcasm].

So I go and come back and it turns out the kid did not come to the house at all because his father called and said the kid could talk to my parents after the basketball game that will be played today. This upsets my mother because she now has to come up with a reason why she wanted to talk with the kid without giving away the real reason.

Wait, it isn't over yet. My mother goes to the basketball game and discovers that the kid doesn't even get to play (supposedly because he missed a practice) and that the girl is also there. She wants to talk with both of them but wants to be alone with each of them. Naturally, she talks with neither of them.

I don't want to talk with either of them because (a) I've never liked the girl and (b) the guy was (supposedly secretly) dating my sister a couple of years ago and has now knocked up a girl who was one of her closest friends.

All in all I guess this makes the perfect end to a perfect year. (and if you can't catch the dripping sarcasm on that sentence you probably shouldn't even be reading this)

Posted by Randy at 11:23 PM

Reading Update

Since this break has started, I have read:

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire--J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix--J.K. Rowling
1984--George Orwell
Fahrenheit 451--Ray Bradbury
One Door Away From Heaven--Dean Koontz
Swan Song--Robert McCammon
The Regulators--Stephen King

Before I return to LeTourneau, I still want to read:

The Jungle--Upton Sinclair
Lord of the Flies--William Golding
Desperation--Stephen King
The Da Vinci Code--Dan Brown

If I finish all of these it will be the largest number of books I have ever read in less than a month's time. I wonder if this is how Jared feels...

Posted by Randy at 12:24 AM

December 27, 2003

Rusty Teeth?


So, after you brush your teeth, if half of what you spit out is brown colored, you are drinking way too much damn Dr. Pepper. If this happens, you should probably cut back before your body shuts down on you.

Just thought I'd give everyone that advice.

Posted by Randy at 04:07 AM

December 26, 2003

Bush's Mad Cows

I was wondering how long it was going to take before democrats started blaming Bush for the Mad Cow stuff.

It was longer than I had expected.

Posted by Randy at 07:46 PM

My Immortal

My Immortal by Evanescence

I'm so tired of being here
Suppressed by all my childish fears
And if you have to leave
I wish that you would just leave
Because your presence still lingers here
And it won't leave me alone

These wouns won't seem to heal
This pain is just too real
There's just too muh that time cannot erase

When you cried I'd wipe away all of your tears
When you'd scream I'd fight away all your fears
And I've held your hand through all of these years
But you still have all of me

You used to captivate me
By your resonating light
But now I'm bound by the life you left behind
Your face it haunts my once pleasant dreams
Your voice it chased away all the sanity in me

These wounds won't seem to heal
The pain is just too real
There's just too much that time cannot erase

When you cried I'd wipe away all of your tears
When you'd scream I'd fight away all your fears
And I've held your hand through all of these years
But you still have all of me

I've tried so hard to tell myself that you're gone
And though you're still with me
I've been alone all along


I'm sure that most of you have heard this song. If not, I would recommend that you do so because simply reading the words does not do the song justice. When I first heard this song earlier in this last semester I was almost brought to tears.

The song seemed to capture several feelings that had been swirling around inside me since April 11 and release them. I was given Evanescence's Fallen CD as a gift and listened to it in my car this evening. This song once again brought up those emotions, but they weren't nearly as strong.

"There's just too much that tme cannot erase." I don't think emotional wounds ever fully heal. Hearing family members speak about my sister automatically causes my defenses to start.

Thinking about this caused an image to come to my mind. Strong emotional wounds are like physical wounds that won't heal. All you can really do is keep the wound protected, keep it clean, and occasionally change the bandages. Sometimes the pain will be unbearable, but most of the time you learn to ignore the pain and go on with daily life.

And if that sounds depressing, I'm sorry. I'm not exactly full of holiday cheer at the moment.

Posted by Randy at 01:39 AM

December 24, 2003

Bright Light

There is something wrong with The Return of the King. I knew it when I saw it the first time. Now that I've seen it for a third time (all three times I didn't have to pay! Yay!), I am positive that the movie could have been better had they changed this one aspect about it.

The movie is too bright.

Yes, Frodo makes references to the days "growing darker," say thats "it's always dark here," and claims to be lying "naked in the dark," but in all these instances it is very obvious that a bright light is shining down on them. I understand that if it had been as dark as described in the book I would have been looking at a black screen for good chunks of the movie. However, they could have at least dimmed the lights so that it would have appeared that they weren't filming in the middle of the day or underneath studio lighting. Does anyone agree with me on this?

The movie is still the best movie I've seen in quite some time.

Posted by Randy at 01:33 AM

December 23, 2003

Change is Good, Apparently

In case you haven't heard, McDonald's Chicken McNuggets are now made with white meat. Isn't that exciting? According to the commercials, change is good.

Posted by Randy at 03:26 PM

PDA Happiness

I have a new toy. My very own PDA. I've been playing with it for hours today. When you people see me expect to be barraged with questions. I've got a contact list to fill up and I'm already well on my way.

I've also been playing solitaire and jawbreaker (the only two games that came with it, I am going to try to get that remedied), messing around with the different ways to put in text (touch screen keyboard, letter recognizer, transcriber), and setting up my calendar.

My thoughts today have generally been:

"I've got my new PDA! I've got my new PDA! I've got my new PDA! I've got my new PDA! I've got my new PDA! I've got my new PDA! I've got my new PDA! I've got my new PDA! I've got my new PDA! I've got my new PDA! I've got my new PDA! I've got my new PDA!"

I think I'm going to go pop a pain pill and go to sleep.

Posted by Randy at 02:13 AM

December 19, 2003

Painkillers and Movies

So, guess what I did today. Go on, guess. I am not going to continue the story until someone guesses. Don't look at the screen like that, I can keep this up all night.

Thank you. About time.

Well, you are wrong. I had all four of my wisdom teeth cut out. My mouth still aches a bit (they were cut out at 11:15 this morning) but I have pain medicine if that gets out of hand. Also, if this post seems a little weird to you at any point, blame the painkillers.

Last night at 11:45 I saw The Return of the King. I got home around 4:30 in the morning and crawled in bed. The movie was incredible. I think they were closer to the book in this movie than in either of the other two. The last scene of the movie was absolutely perfect.

The one major thing I was worried about for this movie was Shelob. They did the fight with Shelob masterfully. I seriously hate spiders (I'm not arachnaphobic, I just really don't like them...something about them terrifies me), so I knew that if Shelob didn't strike fear into my heart it would be a failure. It was a success.

I agree with Jared about one thing, though (which is strange since he hasn't seen it yet). I will not have closure until I own and watch the Extended Edition. I recognized a few things that will have to be in it.

Posted by Randy at 12:02 AM

December 15, 2003

Stupid Legal Crap

Here's an interesting little story.

I was supposed to have my wisdom teeth cut out today. I woke up this morning, took a pre-surgery pill to get some anesthesia into my system, and rode up to the place with my mother. Upon arriving we were questioned about certain things. One question was if I had anything to eat or drink in the previous six hours. I answered that I had drank a little Dr. Pepper in order to take the pill. I drank Dr. Pepper because the water at my house is horrid. We get our water from a well and it has become horribly sulfuric over the past few years. We have a water filter attached near the well so that we can use the water for bathing, but we don't use it to cook or drink.

Anyway, because I had a sip of Dr. Pepper over an hour before they were supposed to cut into my jaw, we had to postpone the operation. My mother was infuriated. She is a nurse who works in an emergency room so she knew there were practically no risks whatsoever from a sip of Dr. Pepper. She has also helped in operations with the same IV anesthesia in which they didn't even bother asking if the patient had eaten or drank anything recently. After arguing with the doctor for a while, we rescheduled the appointment for Thursday. He refused to do the surgery because if anything did happen he would be legally responsible.

Quote: "I know nothing will happen and you know nothing will happen. But if something did happen I wouldn't have a legal leg to stand on."

Now, if two very well trained individuals both know and admit that there is practically no risk whatsoever of anything bad happening, and if something did happen it would be a case of pneumonia at the very worst, why is this a problem?

It's all very annoying.

Posted by Randy at 02:15 PM

The Mt. Enterprise Curse?

I've heard many people talk about the curse of LeTourneau breaks. I think that someone from LU has died every summer and Christmas break that the school has had since I have been there. I'm hoping that the curse will be broken this semester, especially now since I think that the curse has followed me home.

This morning I learned that Mr. Tim English, a teacher from my high school, had a heart attack at 9:30, arrived at a hospital over an hour later (have no idea why it took so long), and died a short time later.

LeTourneau hasn't had crap compared to Mt. Enterprise these last few years. If this keeps up people are probably going to start leaving town. This makes at least ten people directly related to the school who have died over the last five or so years.

Posted by Randy at 02:03 PM

December 14, 2003

Tragic Skills

One learns many things when a family member dies. When my sister died I learned a lot about myself and a lot about other people. These are valuable lessons which should not be forgotten easily.

One can also learn a lot of new skills. The most important skill combination to master is the "smile-and-nod" techniqe with an "I-have-been-comforted" face followed quickly by some "Thank-you-for-your-kind-words" expression. This skill may be tested months after the death of a family member by someone you have never met before.

For example, yesterday I was pumping gas into my car when I was approached by a woman who I don't believe I have ever seen before. I immediately recognized the look on the woman's face ("oh-you-poor-dear-let-me-comfort-you") and quickly braced myself for what was coming. Sure enough, she launched into the requisite speech about how much everyone misses Jessica and the others and how sorry she was for what happened. She then proceeded to tell me that her daughter was naming their new dog "Jessica (something) Angel."

During this speech I once again had to smile, nod, and look comforted. I then thanked her. She smiled, turned, and walked away probably feeling quite pleased with herself. I looked into the car she walked out of and recognized her daughter. Her daughter looked horribly embarassed about what her mother just did, so I smiled at her and waved.

I'm not sure why this woman decided to approach me and tell me these things eight months after my sister died. I'm also not sure why she thought telling me her daughter was naming a dog after my sister would make me happy.

I really don't understand people.

Posted by Randy at 07:29 PM

Book Plans

Books I plan to read over break:

1984 by George Orwell (almost finished)
Farenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
Lord of the Flies by William Golding
The Jungle by Upton Sinclair
The Regulators by Stephen King
Swan Song by Robert McCammon
One Door Away from Heaven by Dean Koontz

This will make up for all the reading I wanted to do during last semester but was unable to do for one reason or another.

Posted by Randy at 03:11 PM

December 12, 2003

Mind Quiz

Yet another quiz. This one was quite interesting. I'm not entirely sure I completely agree with my results.

Your Brain Usage Profile

Auditory : 44%
Visual : 55%
Left : 42%
Right : 57%

simsfreak01, you possess an interesting balance of hemispheric and sensory characteristics, with a slight right-brain dominance and a slight preference for visual processing.

Since neither of these is completely centered, you lack the indecision and second-guessing associated with other patterns. You have a distinct preference for creativity and intuition with seemingly sufficient verbal skills to be able to translate in any meaningful way to yourself and others.

You tend to see things in "wholes" without surrendering the ability to attend to details. You can give them sufficient notice to be able to utitlize and incorporate them as part of an overall pattern.

In the same way, while you are active and process information simultaneously, you demonstrate a capacity for sequencing as well as reflection which allows for some "inner dialogue."

All in all, you are likely to be quite content with yourself and your style although at times it will not necessarily be appreciated by others. You have sufficient confidence to not second-guess yourself, but rather to use your critical faculties in a way that enhances, rather than limits, your creativity.

You can learn in either mode although far more efficiently within the visual mode. It is likely that in listening to conversations or lecture materials you simultaneously translate into pictures which enhance and elaborate on the meaning.

It is most likely that you will gravitate towards those endeavors which are predominantly visual but include some logic or structuring. You may either work particularly hard at cultivating your auditory skills or risk "missing out" on being able to efficiently process what you learn. Your own intuitive skills will at times interfere with your capacity to listen to others, which is something else you may need to take into account.

Posted by Randy at 02:38 AM

December 11, 2003


Yes, I did just take another pointless quiz. I have to share the results, though.

Congratulations! You're Merry!

Which Lord of the Rings character and personality problem are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

I couldn't help smiling when I saw this. Especially after thinking about some of the conversations I have had today.

Posted by Randy at 06:06 PM

December 09, 2003


Who comes up with these headlines?
(Intentionally misinterpreted)

U.S. Repulses 2 Suicide Bombers in Iraq
Well, I'm glad to know that we aren't pleasing the suicide bombers.

Schwarzenegger Won't Conduct Own Probe
Good. Nice to know that he won't be probing himself in office.

Feds Describe Deceptive Weight-Loss Ads
Angry about losing their hard-earned money, politicians take a stand against corrupt weight-loss agencies.

Tough Times for Santa in Snowless Lapland
Replace "tough" with a synonym and we have an instant Christmas-themed porn title.

Posted by Randy at 12:03 PM

December 08, 2003


I've been meaning to link The Limey Brit for quite some time now. I have been checking his blog regularly for quite some time now, but I have to be motivated quite a bit to brave the horrors of my template. I finally decided to get off my lazy butt and do it.

Finals are almost half-finished for me. Only three of them left now. I've got one tonight and two tomorrow. I feel sorry for all the poor people who have four finals tomorrow.

Posted by Randy at 02:39 PM

December 07, 2003


Why? Why, on the weekend before finals, do I wake up hearing a voice inside me practically yelling at me to go home? Why is it that I had an undeniable urge to get in my car and drive home when I have all of my finals on Monday and Tuesday? Why?

This question has been floating around in my mind ever since I left campus around two o'clock on Saturday. The answer eluded me. I could not understand why I would feel a sudden unbearable case of homesickness one week before Christmas break. The fact that I live only an hour away from my house and that I go home practically every weekend only added to my confusion.

Strangely enough, the answer came to me at 1:30 in the morning as I was making some popcorn and reading Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

This is the month of December, Christmas season. This is going to be the most joyous time of the year...and my sister is dead and buried. For some reason, I just realized that I have been feeling guilty about staying away from my family. I avoid them because they almost always bring up my sister in conversations, and it annoys the crap out of me. Although I have gone home more this semester than any other one, I believe I have spent less time with my family than at any other time in my life.

I find excuses to get away from family get-togethers, leave houses as soon as I can, and generally shudder at the thought of staying over the night with any of my relatives. I have been being a complete and utter asshole to the people who I love.

That has to change.

Posted by Randy at 01:54 AM

December 03, 2003

The (Almost) End of Physics

I learned today (Tuesday) that I made an 80% on my last pre-final Univ. Phys. II test. I have never thought I would be this happy about getting a C in a class in my life. One last test to go and then I will never have to take another physics class again. Of course, Statics and Dynamics have their own little circles of Hell, but I'll cross that bridge when I get there.

Now I have to start preparing for finals. Joy.

Posted by Randy at 02:12 AM