Day 312

Good morning, all. I was way too tired to update this last night, so here it is now!

Yesterday morning I really considered not going to class, but I decided that I should just do it. So off I went. I'm actually glad that I did go because in Investments we watched a PBS Nova on the stock market, particularly two economists named Black and Scholes, who created a definitive pricing formula for option and derivative pricing. It was really good. On our way to the Atrium after class I was talking with Jacob about the video and I just mentioned how much I like Novas. So he asked me which ones I'd seen and I told him about the one I'd watched on String Theory. Later on in the day I sent him a link for it to watch online... Because it really is that awesome. If you have about 3 hours to spare, I highly recommend watching the PBS Nova "an elegant universe."

During life con we went over some ways of solving the various differential equations that we've encountered during our class. Since this May will be the first time the new MLC exam is being used, no one really knows what exactly will be on it. So... This will be interesting for anyone taking it.

After class I came back to my apartment and had lunch. I considered being productive, did some amount of cleaning, then decided I was tired of that and played video games for a bit. Then I decided to look for a Nova to watch. So I found one on space. It's really long (4 hours) so i just watched the first part. But I hope to finish it soon.

Kathryn came over for dinner. I made pizza with bacon. It turned out really well. After dinner we went to family video and got Spider-man. Even though I've seen it about 2 million times I still love it. So much amazingness. Then we talked for a while about... Life? Ha, just whatever came to mind. So yeah, that was fun. Then it was bed time!

So. The end!


Day 311

I did not want to get up this morning.  I'm sure this is a huge surprise... but I was not too excited about going to the computer lab.  But up I got and away I went.

For my first couple of hours in the lab I worked on probability.  I did around 15 or so problems.  I was happy with that.  We don't have a quiz next week, but I just want to start working problems every day.  Foley canceled life con, so I didn't go to that.  Instead I went to my office and had a super early lunch.  When I got back to the lab I printed out the last part of my tax forms and the life con problems Foley sent us for our quiz next week.  Timbo came into the lab around then, so he and I started working through the problems.  It was tons of fun.  I worked on that for a while, then got tired of it and worked on probability some more.  My brain was starting to get pretty tired, so I played a game on my phone for the remaining time in the lab.  I was getting pretty bored, so I left a little early.

The pills I'm on for my eczema gives me some energy in the morning... and makes me pretty restless.  So it's a jolly good time.  After I left the lab I went to the on campus post office and sent off my state tax returns.  Hopefully I get the refunds in the next couple of weeks.

Then I came home, got a snack, played some TF2, put away laundry...I know I did something else.  I'm not sure what though.  Cleaned my room a bit.  It was super exciting.  I tried to find a photo editing app for my phone.  I found one that also has a webpage component... so that I could go back and forth between the two.  But then I realized that I know nothing about photo editing.  So I abandoned that.  I did add a recipe to my recipe blog, so feel free to take a look at that here: http://joels-recipes.blogspot.com/2012/03/pulled-barbecue-chicken-and-baked.html

At some point this afternoon I was texting with Jared and we were trying to figure out when we'd get to hang out over the summer.  He mentioned that his birthday is the same day as MVNU graduation, so if I thought I'd have some spare time, we should hang out.  It then dawned on me that I had scheduled to take my exam on that day.  So I changed it to the previous Saturday.  So I am now taking my exam on Saturday May 12 at 1:30pm.  Woohoo!

Kathryn came over for dinner and studying.  We had left over hamburgers and fries that I made the other day.  I'm never sure whether the food I make is actually really good or my friends are just used to having frozen food, so anything that is remotely fresh tastes good (like eating home cooked food after eating nothing but cafeteria food for a few months).  The plan was to work on homework after that.  Apparently "homework" is code for "watch a movie and eat cupcakes."  Quite frankly I like that version of homework much better.  So that's what happened!

And now I am going to bed.  Good night friends.  Thanks for reading this nonsense that I put out here. 


Day 310

So today started with quite the surprise.  My alarm went off at 6:30 as usual.  Then I hit the snooze, also as usual.  Correction: I thought I hit snooze.  I guess I turned it off... then woke up at 7:15.  Oh joy.  So I quickly took a shower, made coffee, got an apple, and left for class.

I got on the bus and sat down... it was very full.  Seconds later I hear a "good morning Joel!"  I look around... lo and behold Erica and Jordan are sitting one person away from me.  I was so busy waking up that I didn't even notice them. They came to campus early to cram for the probability quiz today.  So when I got to class we found out that we weren't going to actually go over new things today.  Today was basically about why economists are full of nonsense (from an actuary's perspective).  So that was just buckets of fun.

In between classes I got some food because I was starving, then we just studied for probability.

Apparently I guessed really well on my probability quiz from last week.  So that was a pleasant surprise.  Hopefully that happened again this week.  I felt like I knew how to do the problems... but for some reason it just took me forever.  I was doing fine on time... and then all of the sudden I had 5 minutes left and 5 questions left to do.  I was not amused.  So we'll see how that goes.

I didn't have time to make a lunch this morning, so I stopped by Taco Bell.  It was good.  They have a new taco that has a Dorrito shell... it was amazing.  So much amazing.

After lunch I trollied off to the hospital for my appointment with the dermatologist.  I filled out all the insurance nonsense, went into the office, and answered some questions.  When the doctor came in he looked at it and immediately declared that it was (still is) eczema.  I've had this before, so it's not entirely new.  I just never even thought that it might be eczema again.  So I finished up there and went to Wal-greens to get the prescription.  I got it filled pretty quickly.  When I got home I noticed that I only had an ointment, but I was fairly certain I was also supposed to have pills.  So I called the dermatologist and they were, in fact, supposed to give me pills as well.  We got that fixed and I went back to go acquire that.

After successfully getting the rest of my prescription, I picked Kathryn up and we went to go see The Lorax.  It was cute.  Some of the musical numbers didn't seem to fit wonderfully, but I liked it.  Then We came back to my apartment and I made pancakes, eggs, and bacon for breakfast.  I tried to make eggs over easy, but I left the stove on too long, so they became eggs over hard.  Oh well.  I always forget how long bacon takes to make... but it takes quite some time.  Dumb.  I tried to keep the grease in the pan to a minimum, so I poured the hot grease into a disposable plastic cup...which turned out to be a bad idea, as it melted the cup.  But once I got everything cooked, it turned out decently.  The pancakes took no time at all since I used a box mix.  I'll have to attempt an actual recipe some time.  And I will not be adding "eggs over easy" to my recipe blog because there is no way that I can describe the nonsense that I go through to make them.

When we'd finished eating, I cleaned the kitchen, as Clifton was having some guests over and he'd spent a lot of time cleaning for them... so I didn't want to have my dishes out after he'd done so much cleaning.  Then Kathryn and I went to Family Video to get something to watch.  We settled on a TV show (Modern Family), got the first disc, and went back to her apartment to watch it.  Eventually I got tired, so I came back to my apartment.  Now I'm going to bed.  Night!


Day 309

So today!

I woke up late.  I was tired.  Well, I actually woke up on time, but I was just didn't feel like getting up that early.  So I finally got up at 7...

I did get to work on time though, so that's good.  Mainly just working on probability.  Actually... that's what I did the entire time.  I also learned that my coffee mug does not retain heat for very long.  So that's exciting.  I don't suppose I should expect too much for $6 though.  I remember thinking this morning that there was something that I really wanted to write about... but I can't remember what it is now.  I hate when that happens.

Then... we had life con.  It was a blast.

After class I went to go work out with Dustin.  It was rough.  I think I pulled something or got a knot in my neck... I was not really amused by this.  Bleh.  Oh well.  Then I ate lunch in my office.  I got a ticket from Saha for Bangladesh Night in a couple weeks, so I need to get him money for that sometime soon.  Yup.

Umm... So then I went back to the computer lab.  And tried to work on probability.  It's kind of (actually, very) frustrating.  I feel like I understand the concepts, but then they ask questions and I really don't know how to answer them.  Or the question will actually be very easy (conceptually) but they just throw in really tedious calculations.  Anyhow, when I got back to my apartment I got a snack and tried to study some more.

I made hamburgers and fries for dinner. I feel like these recipes that I've made the past two days are so trivial that it's not even worth adding to my recipe blog... but I need to add them.  I haven't updated it for a while.  But yeah, I made hamburgers and fries.  I think the burgers should have been more flat... but they were pretty good.  I seasoned the fries with chili seasoning and garlic salt, the burgers with cinnamon and garlic salt (I really like garlic salt).  They were good.  I think I should have done cayenne instead of garlic salt in the burgers... that would have been tasty.  Maybe next time.

After dinner I talked with Clifton for a while about people being silly.  Well, basically about how the universe owes us nothing.  And the sooner we acknowledge this, the sooner we can stop feeling like we deserve things from life.  Then I did some more studying.  I was pretty well worn out at this point, so I decided to be done for the night.  So I read a couple articles on the internet.  One of the longer ones was comparing the baby boomers with the current generation.  The article was mainly to help people understand that the army of young people graduating from school and trying to enter the work force are encountering something much different than the baby boomers encountered.  According to the article, as the baby boomers grew up their parents created or continued to create systems that would allow the boomers to flourish as adults.  Once the boomers entered the work force, they ensured that the systems stayed in place...at least as long as they were alive.  Things like social security are all but guaranteed to run out in the next 30 years unless something drastic happens.  Those in my generation who are somewhat politically aware have known that they will never get a penny from social security.  So yeah, the rest of the article gave some statistics about wealth and poverty between identical age groups now and 30 years ago, then talked about how people just aren't retiring as early as they used to.  Sometimes by choice, sometimes out of necessity... but either way it prevents younger people from getting jobs and so the cycle continues.  If I'd read it on this computer I would have actually provided a link... but I actually read it this morning in the computer lab.  I just decided to add it right here.

Anyhow.  Time for bed.  Night!

Day 308

I am exhausted.

Today was reasonably eventful.  I had breakfast and class and things.  Yeah.

In between classes we had a decent discussion about technology.  I think it started when I asked Paul what sort of phone he was going to get when the contract on his Blackberry (or as they are more affectionately known, "Crackberries").  So we discussed differences between iPhones and Android phones, how we use phones, GPS versus maps... then on to the differences between Facebook and Twitter and how we use (or don't use) them.  It was interesting.  It appears that some people do, in fact, use Mapquest.  I always thought that was just a saying and that everyone actually used Google Maps.  Learned something new today.  

I also finally ponied up and bought a mug from the Atrium.  I didn't want to, but I get refills for $.70 instead of buying a cup of coffee for $1.65.  And the mug was only $6 (including the first cup of coffee).  The first mug I got had a leak in it, so I had to get a new one.  But that didn't seem to be an issue.

During Life Contingencies we discussed some actual formulae for some of the concepts we've been dealing with and just went over why they work intuitively.  I like classes like this where we we've gotten to a point that we can imagine a scenario where we need a formula... and we just make it.  We don't derive everything from scratch, starting with the normal garbage of mathematical nonsense using phrases like "Let x be a member of the set of positive integers such that for all x in Z+ we can say..."  Nope, none of that (though I've done my fair share of them in my time as a maths student).  We just look at something like "we want our person to get paid when he moves from state 1 to state 3 and stays there."  So we just set it up and do it!

After class I worked out with Dustin.  It took us longer than usual, but we were both just being pokey today. We got through it eventually.

When I got home I had lunch and read some probability.  It was so much fun.  Then I went to the store to get some shampoo since I was out.  But no more!

When I got back I made some coffee and relaxed for a little bit.  Then I started making dinner.

I tried something new (recipe coming tomorrow).  A long time ago I went to a restaurant with Amber and Jesse out in Phoenix that served baked potatoes covered with barbecue pulled pork.  So I thought I'd try to make that.  It went really well.  I didn't have pork, so I used chicken and just used a fork to shred the meat.  It worked decently.  Then I just threw it in a skillet with barbecue sauce while the potatoes were in the oven.  Kathryn came over for dinner and to study afterwards.  So studying was all sorts of fun... as fun as studying probability can be, I suppose (which really isn't that fun at all).  When she went home I played some TF2 with Miles.  And now I'm going to bed!  Night!

As  random thought, I think I need to start using new tags, but I'm not sure what sort of things I should tag.  I don't really ever use the tags I have.  Any suggestions?  Thanks!


Day 307

So I have effectively done no homework this weekend.  Tomorrow and Tuesday will therefore contain much joyous studying for probability.  Yay.

Anyhow, I got up, showered, made oatmeal for breakfast, then woke Kimmy up. Jessie texted me around 10:30 to see if I remembered whether church was supposed to start early this week.  I vaguely remembered something about that, but none of us could really remember.  So they came over and we went to church.  Sure enough, the service started half an hour early today.  Whoops!  Anyhow, the service was good.  The senior pastor was out of town, so one of the other pastors preached.  It was on James and how powerful our words can be.  It was really good.  The pastor reminded me of myself with some of his mannerisms and the way that he spoke.

After church we went to Arby's for lunch.  I brought coupons with me since Jessie and Richard were almost out.  We both get lots of coupons and ads in the mail, so for the past couple weeks we'd been using some of the coupons they got in the mail.  But since they had few left I cut mine out and brought them.  I can definitely see Kimmy and me being slight couponers.  And craigslisters.  Anyhow, after lunch we went over to the mall to see the Hunger Games.  We got there a bit early, so we went to TJ Max.  I got a pair of shorts because I only have two pair and I figured I could use another.  Then we went to the movie.  I liked it.  There was a lot of hype around it.  I have no idea whether it lived up to the hype, but I was entertained.  So I guess it was a victory.

When we got back Kimmy and I sat around and talked for a bit, then got dinner.  For we were hungry.  Then we watched the episodes of How I Met Your Mother that we had not yet watched.  Around 8 she had to go.  Dumb.  So she should be getting back to Mount Vernon in the near future.

Then I played games with Miles for a bit.  Now I am tired and I'm going to bed. Good night all!


Day 306

Saturday!  I like Saturdays!

On this particular Saturday I woke up around 8, showered, then went over to Jessie and Richards apartment with Kimmy for breakfast and to see parents.  After breakfast and talking with everyone for a bit I went over to pick Timbo up and go to the Math Association of America conference which was at Ball State's Alumni Center.

The first talk we went to was on using difference equations* to find Fibonacci numbers**.  It was probably really good, but it used a lot of linear algebra that I haven't used in many years.  So it was hard to follow.  The other talk we went to was on Sophie Germain, who was a famous mathematician.  She added a lot to the field of Number Theory and early computer science.  We only stayed for two talks, but it was fun.

*A difference equation is a recursive equation that uses subtraction.  Something like 3*(next term) = 2*(current term) - 8*(previous term) would be a difference equation.

**The Fibonacci numbers are a series that can be constructed by adding the previous two terms together.  So it starts with 0 and 1.  Then the next term is found by adding the previous two terms (1 and 0) together to get 1.  The next term adds the previous two terms (1 and 1) to get 2.  Then add 2 and 1 to get 3.  3 + 2 = 5, 5 + 3 = 8, 8 + 5 = 13... and so on.  These numbers show up on occasion in math and in nature.  Another cool feature of them is that dividing a term by the previous term gives you a number close to the golden ratio.  And as you choose larger and larger terms in the sequence, it gets closer to the golden ratio.  The golden ratio also shows up at random.

After the conference I went to go pick Kimmy up.  She had gone with my parents to watch Harley in a color guard competition.  But mom and dad had to leave right after it was over, so I went to go get Kimmy.  Then we went back to my apartment and got lunch.  After lunch we went to Macy's to return the dish that got broken in the mail.  The lady had to call around to some other stores to find it because that dish is being discontinued.  But she got it figured out.  Then we looked around Macy's for a bit.  When we'd finished there we went grocery shopping.

When we got back I showed Kimmy how to use the budgeting software I found.  I think I'm going to buy it.  It's really nice.  I'm sure that some day I'll be good enough with Excel to make the exact same thing on my own, but I'm not quite there.  So for now I feel like it's a good investment.  And they will never force me to upgrade to a newer version of the software, so if I like this I can just use it forever!

After that we just kind of bummed around for a while.  Then we went on one of our new favorite dates: Chinese food, Little Caesar's pizza, and ice cream.  So much amazingness.  It was fantastic.  We watched a movie called "Source Code."  It was decent.  And we've just been lazy the rest of the evening.  So it's been a very good day.

But now I'm thinking about going to bed.  So... good night!


Day 305

Ok!  The weekend is here and I'm about to give you an update.

Morning...omellette...class... you know the drill.  My mornings are pretty standard.  Last night my investments quiz got canceled, so I didn't have that in the morning.  In between classes we went to the atrium and did some studying.  We were having trouble understanding why one of the answers worked the way it did (I had a general reasoning, but no sound mathematical argument) so Jacob did a quick and dirty proof and we were all convinced.

For the beginning of life con we just talked about... something involving Markov chain theory.  Huh.  I remember at the beginning of class we asked Dr. Foley what he was going to be doing this weekend.  He said that if the weather was nice he would be having "porch time."  We inquired whether that was working on his porch or sitting on it and he said "Nope.  Just sitting on it.  Probably have a cold beer.  Yup, that sounds like a good weekend to me."  I don't actually remember what we talked about in class, except for going over some loose ends before the quiz.  I think I finished the quiz in about 5 minutes.  I like when that happens.  I remembered the formulae and could replicated the homework problems.  So it was a victory.  Or a wictory, depending on how you prefer to spell it.

After the quiz I came back to my apartment, woke Kimmy up, and got lunch.  Then we went to tech support on campus to have them look at my computer. It was raining, so Kimmy dropped my off by the library and went to go park my car.  She got some on-the-fly experience with Ball State campus.  So I went in there and explained my problem.  The guy did some standard initial tests and things that might fix it.  While various scans ran we just talked about video games and such.  We play some of the same ones, so we talked about them for a bit.  Eventually he realized that he couldn't figured out what was wrong with it, so he had his supervisor come check it out.  She looked around, asked some questions, then just kind of stumbled upon the issue.  Somehow I'd gotten a virus (which I'd taken care of previously), but the virus had made some weird changes to the Windows Firewall that pretty much blocked all websites (where the Firewall normally just blocks the bad sites).  So we got that taken care of and life was good again!

When we got back we started some wedding things.  It started off with working on the guest list.  I officially hate that I can't invite all of the people.  It's dumb.  But cuts had to be made :(  Then we moved on to the registry.  My brain just can't handle that much decision making.  We pretty much worked on wedding stuff from about 3 until 10, with a break for dinner.  My brain can't quite handle that.  But we got nearly everything done!

Mom and dad arrived around 9:30.  They brought Kimmy and me a wedding present from Aunt Terri!  But UPS broke it while in transit, so we're going to take it back to Macy's tomorrow to get it replaced.  So we talked for a bit about some wedding stuff (since that's pretty much all Kimmy and I did today), then they went to Jessie and Richards.  We're going to get breakfast with them tomorrow, but I don't know what the plan is.  Either way, it's time for bed.  So good night!


Day 304


So this morning was pretty normal.  I woke up, got breakfast, made lunch, and went to work.  When I got to the computer lab, I studied for the investments quiz tomorrow.

We had life con in the computer lab today. We learned how to solve series of differential equations in Mathematica, which we need to do for our last exam.  After class I stayed in the computer lab and "worked," which means that I really just studied some more.  I have an awesome job.

After class I came back to my apartment.  My internet still was not working so I called my service provider and talked with him on the phone for about 30 minutes.  We tried a lot of different things.  Finally I booted up in "Safe Mode with Networking" and was able to connect to the internet.  So he told me to run some virus scans and hope it fixed everything.  It did not.  I still can't connect in regular running mode.  So tomorrow I have to go to the IT department at school and hopefully have them fix my computer.

For dinner I got dinner with someone who used to go to OSAS with me and goes to school here at Ball State.  We're friends on Facebook and she recently sent me a message to say that we should get dinner, since we both go to school here.  So we did.  It was fun.  We talked about school and family and dance and such.  Yup!

Kimmy got back to my apartment shortly after I did.  She had some car problems so she got set back a bit.  But they hopefully got fixed.  So when she got back we went to go get ice cream with Kathryn.  It was tasty.

And now I'm going to bed.  Yup.  Good night!

Day 303

I didn't get a chance to update last night because apparently the internet in my apartment ceased to work.  I don't like the Blogger for Android application.  So hopefully they get that fixed in the near future.  Like... before 2:30 today when I return to my apartment.

So yesterday morning was fairly normal.  I had oatmeal then went to Investments.  Strictly in that order.  After class we had Atrium time and tried to study for probability.

Wow.  That quiz... was something else.  I generally assume that the number of questions that are dedicated to a specific topic in the manual is roughly proportional to the number of questions for that topic on the exam, therefore it will be respectably proportioned on the quiz.  Not the case with yesterday's exam.  Nearly all of the questions in the manual had to do with either transformations of random variables or distributions of sum/differences/products/quotients of random variables.  But about half the quiz was on order statistics... on which there were not many questions in the manual.  So I was clearly quite amused by this.  And by that I mean I was not amused at all.

When I got back I was in a fantastic mood.  So I ate pizza and played TF2.  I felt a little better, but I was still pretty frustrated.  Oh well.

Kimmy went home yesterday to do wedding stuff, but she'll be back sometime today.  I felt that was relevant but wasn't sure where to stick that in.

Dustin and I went disc golfing yesterday afternoon.  It was fun.  It was kinda toasty so we decided to be semi-white trash and go shirtless.  Exactly zero regrets were had.  Then we got milkshakes at DQ.  It was a fantastic choice.  When I got back to my apartment I finished my milkshake, then did some cleaning.  And showered.  I did a little bit of laundry, did some dishes.  You know, fun stuff.

For dinner I tried a recipe that I made over the summer.  It was ok, but I wasn't very impressed.  It was a pasta, chicken, green beans, and squash dish.  But they didn't have the right kind of squash at Marsh.  I was not exactly happy with how it turned out, but it was edible.  Kathryn came over to partake in the eating of the aforementioned meal and she said it was good.  So I guess that's comforting.

I didn't really do anything after dinner.  Just kind of sat around, not using the internet because it wasn't working.  Then I went to bed.  The end!


Day 302

Another day.  So here we are.

I had oatmeal for breakfast.  I decided to try it with blueberries and sugar.  It was pretty decent.  I might try it again tomorrow.

This morning at the computer lab I decided to sign up for a Twitter account.  I've found that I have a very hard time following lots of different news sites, so this bring all the news to me.  I can just decide which sites I want to follow and I'll get regular updates from them.  Some of them update really really regularly, so I might un-follow them.  We'll see.  I also read for investments.  The homework assignment is not very numerically based, so I need to actually read the chapter to understand what's happening.

During life con we continued our discussion on Markov chains.  Nothing too exciting.  Our last exam is going to be a take home project, which will be nice.

After class I went to the barber to get a hair cut.  I like having short hair much better than having long hair.  Then I went to my office and had lunch.  When I'd finished eating I went back to the computer lab and read investments for a while.  I also talked with David and Natalie, two other actuarial students.

When I got back to my apartment Kimmy and I got a snack.  Then I did probability for a while.  Kimmy took a nap.  I read more investments.  It was a very exciting afternoon.

We went to dinner at Jessie's.  She made pizza casserole and it was really good.  We talked about my internship, Richard's job interviews, Jessie's exciting times at work, and some possible work opportunities for Kimmy next year.  Apparently we talk about work a lot.  Anyhow, Kimmy found a psychological testing and assessment place somewhere in Muncie that she's going to look into for next year.  Jessie might have a friend who works there (if it's the same place), so that would be convenient.

After dinner we came back, whereupon Kimmy and I had ice cream.  Then I played TF2 with Miles.  And now I'm going to bed.  Good night!


Day 301

Hi friends!  Good to talk with you all again.

I had a rude awakening this morning.  My alarm went off at 6.  I don't know why it did that.  Well actually I do.  On Friday I set my alarm for 6 because I was going to get up and get stuff done.  But I forgot to set it for a normal time.  So I went back to sleep for a bit.

I was not happy when I did get up.  I was sleepy and wanted to go back to bed.  But I got up and made some eggs for breakfast.  Then I went to class.

Not much to say about it.  I went.  I was tired.  No one wanted to be there.  I believe that today is the first time I've ever seen a professor wear shorts to teach.  Good ol' Foley.

In between classes we went to the Atrium.  We discussed the size of Muncie.  I thought it was about 100,000 people.  Tim thought it was closer to 40,000.  According to Wikipedia, it was about 70,000.  So good for us.

Then we had life con.  We learned more about stuff and things.  It was super interesting, clearly.  Afterwards I went to the gym with Dustin.  But I forgot socks.  I was sad.  But it's ok.  When I finished working out I noticed that I had a voicemail from Central Mutual, just saying to call back.  I was hoping for the best (since usually you get a rejection email, not a rejection phone call), but I didn't want to get my hopes up.

Kimmy was awake when I got back.  I gave her a pretty flower that I'd found (a dandelion).  Then we got lunch. I was tired after lunch, so I took a nap.  For like an hour or so.  I felt much better after that.  Then I called Central back.  And they offered me an internship!  I was so full of excitement.  They even agreed to work with my crazy schedule (starting in early May and finishing in late July).  The drive will be rough, but it's worth it.  I have employment for the summer and great experience.  So I'm very excited.  I need to get some more shirts and pants to wear, but I have time for that.

Then I made pizza dough and put it in the microwave to rise.  And then I did more dishes.  After all that I finally started some homework.  Bleh.  I do not like studying.  Around 6ish Kathryn came over and had dinner with Kimmy and me.  The pizza turned out pretty well, I thought.  Except that I didn't put enough oregano and Italian seasoning in.  But it was still good.

I pretty spent the rest of the evening studying.  And now I'm done.  Yup!  So...good night!


Day 300

Hi everyone!  I have been officially keeping a blog for 300 days.  That means that I have been finished with college for 302 days.  It's been quite the adventure so far!

Today was pretty decent.  I woke up, showered, then ate breakfast.  Jessie and Richard came to pick me up for church a little before 11.  Today one of the main people in charge for campus crusade for Christ over at Ball State spoke.  It was good.  He talked mostly from the beginning of Acts.  I really like that book.

After church we went to lunch at Arby's.  They told me about their Hawaii trip, then we talked some about our weekends and such.  Richard likes to try to use medical words that Jessie has taught him, so I tried to give him some actuarial words.  But there really aren't any.  Well, none that sounds impressive.  We like normal words, but abbreviate with lots of symbols.  I did explain to them how we refer to people as (x), where x is the age of the referenced person.  For instance, I would be referred to as (22) or "a life aged 22."  It keeps things shorter.  On the way out I got some cheese sticks for Kimmy, since she was too tired to join us this morning.

When we got back Kimmy had gotten up.  So I got a grocery list together and we went grocery shopping.  I planned for 3 meals this week: pizza, chicken-noodle salad, and squash-chicken-pasta.  They didn't have summer squash, so hopefully the stuff I got tastes good.

When we got back I read some probability and Kimmy played a game.  Later on we started making dinner.  It was then that I learned (or learned again) that Kimmy does not like mayonnaise.  So... she didn't eat dinner.  Kathryn came over for dinner and homework-ing.  As a thank-you for making her dinner and dessert numerous times throughout last week, Kathryn made me white chocolate fudge.  It's really good.  I'm quite excited.  Eventually when Kimmy got hungry she went to Wal-mart to get some food for the rest of the week.  Then Kathryn and I did homework for a while.  After we'd worked for an hour or so we got dessert.  I had an assortment of things from last week.  Kimmy tried some of the pie I made.  Yay!

And now.... bed time.  For I have class tomorrow.  Gross.... but good night!

Day 299

Another "I got in late last night."

So yesterday morning I got up and everything.  Kimmy and I had planned on going to Waffle House with Becky and Marci at 10, so that was the first real thing on the agenda.  I called Becky at 9:45 to make sure we were still going... and I woke her up.  Her alarm had not gone off (or she hadn't set it...or something).  So we all met up at 10:30 instead.  With surprise guest appearance by Miles!

Breakfast was good.  They were really busy.  Our waitress was pretty cool.  She had... kind of a piercing right above her jaw bone?  I have no idea what it actually was.  It was just this stud that was about an inch or so in front of her ear.  It was neat.  Breakfast was good though.  Marci was up for her spring break.  Yup!

After breakfast Kimmy and I got ready and left for Wooster.  I don't remember anything significant happening on the drive.  But we made it safely.

Some of my friends here at school were really curious why someone would have a wedding on St. Patrick's day.  At first I assumed it was just because yesterday was the start of Mount Vernon's spring break.  But then when I saw how they had decorated for the wedding I really understood why.  Everything was very tastefully decorated for St. Patrick's day.  It was amazing.  Lots of black and green, shamrocks, pots of gold to decorate.  My personal favorite was the two ring-bearers (the other a brother of the groom and...someone else?) were around 15 years old and dressed up as leprechauns.  Oh man.  It was amazing.  So much amazing.  A lot of the music they played was Celtic as well.  Another personal favorite was when the pastor (brother of the bride) started the ceremony with "Mawwiage.  Mawwiage is what bwings us togetha today."  This is a fantastic line from the movie "The Princess Bride."  So much win was had.

After the ceremony Kimmy and I talked with some people with whom we'd gone to school at Mount Vernon.  Once we got to the reception we ended up sitting with Kirby, one of my old room mates.  By the by, Tyler (who got married) was also one of my room mates from last year.  Just to clarify.  So anyhow, we sat with Kirby and his fiancee Rachel.  That was fun.  As pre-dinner entertainment there were two Irish dancers who did a few dances.  It was really cool.  I definitely caught myself looking for technique and comparing it to Scottish dancing.  Kimmy's dance instructor also taught Irish dancing, so Kimmy actually knows some Irish dancing and such.  Overall the reception was pretty good.  As one of the snacks they had two bowls full of Lucky Charm marshmallows.

Then it was back to Muncie by way of Findlay (to pick up my car).  We finally got into Muncie around midnight, hence my not blogging last night.  Yup.  The end!


Day 298

Hi everyone! I was too tired to update last night, so here is yesterday's update!

I had a lot to do yesterday morning.  I was going to wake up early to get everything done, but I was just too tired.  So I went back to sleep and elected to skip my 8am class.  I have 0 regrets.  When I did eventually get up, I showered, ate, then packed and got ready for my interview.  The plan was to leave right after life contingencies for my interview.

Life con was fine.  We just talked more about this new modeling that we'll be using and how to transition from the older models we've been using.  Nothing too life changing.

Whenever I go on a trip I forget to bring something.  I've just accepted this about myself.  It doesn't matter how much preparation I put into it, I will inevitably forget to bring something.  So my task is to make sure that thing is as insignificant as possible.  This time it was the invitation to the wedding I'm going to today.  But I was able to get the address from a friend, so no issues were had.

So my interview.  First of all, the building for Central Mutual is just gorgeous.  It looks like it's the mansion for a millionaire back in the 19th century.  I was really surprised.  Anyhow, Central recently purchased a local golf course, so we had lunch at the club house associated with it.  The food was very good.  I had chicken and rice with a little serving of spinach cooked in a raspberry sauce.  It was amazing.  Lunch was with the head of H.R and the Chief Actuary/CFO.  After lunch I got tour of the facility from the Chief Actuary/CFO, then interviewed with the head of HR for about an hour.  We mainly talked about my work experience and how I could see it being beneficial to the company, as well as what I wanted from an internship.  Then I met with the Chief Actuary/CFO for a while.  He asked me things more directly related to how I would fit in as an actuary, things like whether I work better in groups or individually, my knowledge of Excel, things like that.  I explained that I'd never written a macro, but that I have some experience programming in C++ and he confirmed what I've heard before that it's a very easy transition.  Now let's see how well I remember C++...  Overall I thought it went well.  I was told that there really wasn't a lot of competition for the position and no other potential interns, so if they decided they wanted to hire me on for the summer they could probably get the money and work for me to do.  That sounded promising to me.

Then I went to Findlay.  I got there just as mom and dad were starting to eat, so I joined them.  I told them about the interview and all of that business.  Kimmy arrived around 7:30.  So we all sat around and talked for a while.  At 8:30 Kimmy and I had pre-marital counseling with Dave, so we went to that.  Except that he kind of forgot that we were coming, so we just caught him before he was walking out the door.  But he and Tracy were able to get everything figured out.  We went to the church and had our session and it was good.

After that we stopped at Max and Erma's to so hi to Becky, then went to Steak and Shake to get food.  Then we came back and it was bed time!


Day 297

I'm tired and I have a long day tomorrow, so this is going to be super short.

I got up, showered, made eggs, and went to the computer lab.  When I got there I did some reading for probability.  Then I think I answered some emails or something.  I was a bit behind on responding to some things people sent me yesterday, so I did that.

During life con we talked more about the differences between the model we just finished talking about and the one we're starting to talk about now.  Mainly it's a change in notation.  So that's just dandy.

After class I went back to the computer lab with Dustin and Timbo to work on an assignment.  We worked on that for probably about an hour and a half or so.  I had to fix some things then do the finish problem.  We got that done, then I had lunch.

When I got back to my apartment I did some dishes, then thought about preparing for my lunch meeting/interview tomorrow.  But then I realized that I work best when I wing it.  I know basic information and if I get too many details I'll just freak out.  So we'll see how this goes.  I had a phone interview previously, so I don't really know what to expect tomorrow.  We'll see!

I also did a little research.  I've heard a lot about the iPhone's "Siri," which is just a name for their voice command system.  So I was trying to compare it with Android's voice commands and see what I was missing by not having an iPhone.  As it turns out... I'm not missing much.  They both do the same thing and often Android is faster. The big advantage for the iPhone system is that it can translate common speech into commands, but on Android you have to use specific key words.  For example.  If you wanted directions  to the nearest Wal-mart, on Android you would say "navigate to Wal-mart."  And you have to preface your sentence with the word "navigate."  On an iPhone, you could say "how do I get to Wal-mart?" or "where is the nearest Wal-mart?" or something like that.  Or if you were setting an alarm.  On Android you would say "set alarm for 7:45 pm."  You could do this on an iPhone, but you could also do the same thing by saying "wake me up at 7:45 pm" or "remind me to call my mom at 7:45" or "play stars and stripes forever at 7:45 pm."  I don't actually know if it would do that last one or not.

After that I stopped by Jessie's apartment to pick something up.  Then I got some dinner with Kathryn.  After dinner I was going to go play basketball with some of the other actuary students, but I didn't feel like it.  I guess there was an undergrad versus grad student basketball game... but I'm really bad at basketball.  So I had little motivation to go.

I didn't really do anything productive.  It's been really difficult to get motivated.  But hopefully it comes to me soon! OK.  Time for bed.  Night!

Day 296

It was especially difficult to get up this morning.  I hit my snooze a few times... and eventually determined I had to get up.  Ugh.

I got to class a couple minutes early, so I ran up to put the grading in Dr. Nelson's box, then went to class.  I studied for probability for a bit.  Dr. Foley never showed up to class.  We were really confused.  One by one we started to leave.  Just as I was leaving the secretary from the Math department came down to tell us that Dr. Foley had a family emergency, hence his not being at class.  Hopefully everything is ok...

During Atrium time I was super productive.  And by that I mean I did absolutely nothing.  Then we all went to probability.....  I actually think I did ok on this week's quiz.  But I guess we'll see!

After class I went to Wal-mart to get stuff to make pie, as it was Pi Day.  When I got back I ate lunch.  I was going to work on homework with Timbo and Dustin, but we went frisbee golfing instead.  Way more fun.  So we played for a couple of hours at a course near the edge of town.  It was a lot of fun, even though I'm not very good at all.

Afterwards I came back and showered.  It was wonderful.

I had leftovers for dinner.  Then I worked on a homework assignment with Kathryn.  We got it mostly done, but I'm going to finish it tomorrow with Timbo and Dustin (hopefully).  Then we had some of the aforementioned pie.  Jessie and Richard came over and partook in the pie-eating as well.  It was a good time.

And now I'm going to bed.  So good night!


Day 295

So today was pretty good, for the most part.  After I woke up I went to the computer lab and graded for a while.  I think I'm finally getting this grading thing down... for the most part.  I'm still not really a fan of when students leave the ripped portion of their lined paper attached.  And apparently none of them know what a stapler is.  Kind of annoying, but I'll deal with it.

Today during life con we talked about a... new way of looking at the same concepts.  It uses lots of diagrams and basically considers the probabilities of people going into different "states," such as going from being alive to dead, working to retired to dead, and so on.  All of the models involves some "healthy/alive" state and a "death/failure" state.  As we were discussing it, Dr. Foley mentioned that it is often the case that you can go back to a previous state, such as working, retiring, then working again.  Then he pulled out a classic Dr. Foley line: "once you're dead, you stay there.  Unless you're Jesus Christ, then I guess he's kind of an exception.  But we're not going to worry about him at the moment."  It was really funny.

After class I got went to my office and did some grading.  I share an office with Saha and he, too, was grading.  He was a bit frustrated though.  Apparently the class for which he is grading does not have a solution manual.  And he's never taken this class or learned some of the material.  So he has to first learn the material, then see if he can answer the problems.  Way more work than he should have to do, especially because I think it's for an actuarial class, not a stats class (his area of study).  So when I was in there he had a question about life tables.  I did my best to help, but the notation was quite different and some of the concepts were just not the same.  Oh well.

Then I went outside to call mom and eat lunch.  I told mom more about my interview on Friday and such.  She told me about visiting Amber and helping out at Primrose this week.  After we hung up I ate my lunch, then went back to the computer lab.  I just about finished grading while I was up there.

When I came home I did some cleaning, did some dishes, and tried to look at probability.  I've come to realize that at the moment, I just have no motivation to study.  I could work on a project or something just fine.  But doing problems and memorizing formulae?  Yeah... my brain just wanted nothing to do with it.  So that was fun.  I did, however, learn that there is a Zombie-themed 5k run/obstacle course in various locations over the year.  And as crazy fortune would have it, there is one in Indianapolis on my birthday!  So...I might have to consider that.

I made meatloaf for dinner.  Kathryn came over to study, which turned into finally trying out Concannon's Bakery, since it's about 5 seconds from my apartment.  Oh my word... the cheesecake is fantastic.  Worth every single penny.  I regret nothing.  Then we came back and studied some more.  The quiz tomorrow is just a review of what we've done so far... hopefully I do well on it.  We'll see!

Ok.  Time for bed now.  Night!


Day 294

Well.  Class started today.  Woo hoo.

Today actually started quite unexpectedly.  Around 7 I was just sitting down for breakfast when I get a text from Tim, asking if I can give him a ride to class.  I figured that I could make it if I hurried.  So hurry I did!  Tim is oh a medication currently and he can't drive while he's on it.  His wife (Erin) was going to bring him to class, but she pregnant and officially full-term.  And she was quite sick this morning.  So that plan didn't work out so well, but it's all ok.  He got to class.  Tim got his official acceptance as an intern for the Indiana Department of Insurance.  They want him to start as soon as possible, so he'll be starting some work at home at the beginning of April.  He's hoping that since they are giving him work that can be done away from the office that perhaps they will occasionally let him work at home once the summer starts.  Currently he'll have to drive about an hour and a half each way to his internship.  Miserable, but that's reality.

Anyhow.  We got our tests back in investments today.  I did well, so I was happy.  He also assigned our take home exam, do next Monday.  It looks a lot like the in-class midterm, but with a little more information.  Hopefully it's not too bad.

Then we had Atrium hour.  I don't remember any significant discussions... but it was a long time ago.  Who knows.

Then we had life con.  We talked a little bit about the project that's due tomorrow.  Dr. Foley was very clear that we won't be getting the exact answers, and I kind of wondered why he kept saying that.  Turned we learned why.  A few of the assumptions we'd been making (which he reminded us are very reasonable assumptions) are not accurate.  Actuaries make the kinds of assumptions that we made all the time because it's not worth an extra hour or so of work if the work is going to make less than a 1% difference.

After class Dustin and I went to Taco Bell for lunch, since I didn't have time to make a lunch this morning.  As always it was fantastic.  We had a nice nostalgic discussion of video games growing up.  Even though "growing up" was at very different times (he's 7 years older than I am) we still played some of the same games.  It was fun.  I remained on campus because I was supposed to meet someone on campus to return a book I had borrowed from him.  I did a little probability... but not as much as I should have.  I talked with my friend Saha for a little bit.  He's from Bangladesh and he is putting on a "Bangladesh night" with some of his other friends from there.  At first we were just talking about break and I mentioned that I like to cook.  So he asked if I'd ever had any Bangladesh food.  I told him that I haven't, but that I used to eat a decent amount of curried food because a house mate of one of my co-workers was Indian, and I'd go over there every week or so for curry meals.  So Saha invited me to this Bangladesh night, where he and some of his friends are going to cook native food (which he said is also a lot of curried food) and do some other stuff to just show us what their culture is like.  I'm pretty excited.  At the end of the month I'm going to an "Africa night," which is pretty much the same thing... but put on by the students from Africa.  I'm pretty excited.

Anyhow.  When I got back on campus... I didn't really do much.  I did a little probability, but I just couldn't focus.  I hate days like that.

Around 6 I went down to the FedEx office to pick up my package... since apparently the delivery guy couldn't figure out where I live.  Not a huge deal. When I got back I started to make my new phone usable.  At first my contacts weren't syncing... so I was getting text messages but I had no idea who they were.  Well, I had a decent idea.  But it was nice when my contacts actually synced to my phone like they were supposed to.

Also I learned that when you go through the set-up on the phone and it says "you're done!" you aren't really done.  You still have to call Verizon.

Umm... I made my salads for the week.  I'm going to try just making a big salad mixed before hand and see if that stays reasonably not-brown.

Ok.  I'm tired.  So I'm going to bed.  Night!


Day 293

Well, last day of break.  I don't wanna go to class tomorrow morning....

I woke up this morning at 9:30.  Well, actually I woke up at 9:27 and thought "I bet my alarm will be going off shortly..."  which it did.  When I walked into my kitchen to get breakfast I was totally confused by the clocks out there saying that it was 8:30.  So after a minute I determined that daylight savings time must have started today.

For breakfast I made eggs and some oatmeal.  I got a big container of plain oatmeal at Aldi yesterday, so I made some today to see how it was.  And it certainly is plain.  They weren't joking.  I used brown sugar and it was ok.  I bought frozen blueberries at the store, so I'll try those this week to see how they are.  I forgot about my eggs, so they were not my best.  Still ok, but nothing awesome.

I went to go pick Kathryn up from the airport today.  I figured that since I had taken her there, I should probably pick her up as well.  It made sense, anyways.  I got there early, parked, and sat by the gate outside a Starbucks.  I listened to some of the conversations people were having (always entertaining), played a game on my phone... and went back and forth between the two.  I've come to realize two things about airports.  

1: Airports make me anxious.  I think that it's because whenever I go to an airport to travel, I feel so worried about being on someone else's schedule (where there is hardly any room for error) that I've sub-consciously (un-consciously?) made a connection between airports and being anxious.  Good old classical conditioning.

2: I like being greeted and greeting people at airports.  I think that one of the best feelings is when you fly in from another country, get your passport examined, and get a "welcome home" from the security guard.  I love that so much.  You could both be having an awful day... but being told "welcome home" is a great feeling.  And I just like the feeling of having someone at the airport waiting for me to arrive.  So even though I'm sure other people don't get that same feeling, I pretend like they do and I get excited to welcome people at an airport.

Which brings me to the next part of my story: apparently I wasn't paying attention and didn't see Kathryn leave her gate.  Well done, Joel.

We finally connect near baggage and went to go find my car.  This wasn't a difficult task after I realized that I'd parked on the 4th floor, not the 3rd.

Oh side note.  I almost got hit on the way to the airport.  I was minding my own business driving next to another car.  I look over and the lady looks at me.  We made literal eye contact.  She then proceeds to share my lane with me.  I was confused, to say the least.  Now, if she was trying to get in the exit lane and it was heavy traffic, this would have been more understandable.  As it was, we were only the two cars in the near vicinity and there was no exit near by.  We were in the middle of 4 lanes.  She could have gone in literally any other direction without much issue.  But I guess my lane just seemed more appetizing.  Thankfully I was able to avoid the collision...

Back to the story.  So we left the airport and got food at Subway.  They had a $5 seafood sub.  It was... ok.  I wasn't expecting much from what I have to assume was heavily processed "seafood."  And I got about what I expected.  Oh well.

So we got back to Muncie.  Then Kathryn came over and we worked on the life con assignment.  I helped her figure out what was going on, she pointed out assumptions that I'd missed in class.  Someday I hope I can actually take good notes.  My notes have definitely gotten better over the past year... but Foley classes do not really make good note taking easy.  He just jumps around in the lecture and it's hard to keep track of where he is.  I get almost everything written down, but I can't always make sense of it.  Or (one of my favorites) is when I have contradictory information written down.  But usually that's because I was busing taking notes and didn't catch that he pointed out which one of the formulas he wanted us to use.  Oh well.  Yeah, so we worked on that, talked on the phone with David regarding that, and he pointed out some errors I had made.  For which I was appreciative.

Then... I made stir-fry for dinner.  Made hard boiled eggs for my salad.  Then I took Kathryn back to her apartment by way of Wal-mart, as she need some groceries.

And now I am back at my apartment.  Going to bed.  Not excited about having class in the morning.... So good night!

Day 292

I slept in til about 9 today.  It was nice.  When I woke up I made some breakfast, then went grocery shopping.  I had to get a lot of non-food items, like cleaner, toilet paper, stuff like that.  I don't like getting those because even though I can eat for little money, buying that sort of nonsense makes me feel like I'm spending way too much.  But... toilet paper is kind of important.

When I got back I put my groceries away, got lunch, then started to fill in my grocery database.  I've tried to keep all of the things I buy in an Access database.  I'm not sure why, but I feel like it could be useful at some point.  I keep track of where I bought things, the brand, the item, whether it is priced by item or by weight, the quantity, and the price.  I'm sure it will be useful some day.

Anyhow.  Around 1 I left to go to the computer on campus.  I met Dustin and Timbo there and we worked on the life con project.  I believe that I got at least 95% of it done.  I'll ask some questions on Monday and finish it then.

I got back around dinner time and made leftovers.  I finished up the beef and biscuit casserole I made the other day and the noodles from yesterday.  It was a happy dinner.

Then after dinner I did laundry, played TF2, did the dishes, did more laundry... I feel like I did something else.  But it appears that I did not.  So, I guess I'll go to bed now.  Night!


Day 291

Well, today was pretty good.  I liked it, anyhow.

I woke up around 9:45.  I've been really surprised with how late I've been sleeping in.  After I got up I got some breakfast then played Assassin's Creed for a while.  When I was done I took a shower and got some lunch.

I believe it is important to note that on this day, no shirt was worn.  That's right folks.  Even though this blog is called "I'm wearing a shirt," I rebelled against the rules and wore no shirt.

Mostly because I need to do laundry.

So after all of that, I did some finance stuff.  As is my Friday afternoon custom. I started using a program called... "You Need A Budget."  It's not very different from the Excel sheet that I've been using for the past few years, but we'll see.  It comes with a 34 day free trial, so I'll play around with it and see how I like it.  When Kimmy comes to visit, I'll see if she likes it.  So if you have any suggestions for something aside from Excel, feel free to let me know.  Thanks!

After that I added another recipe to my recipe blog.  And made some changes to the both sites.  I don't think it was anything huge.  Let me know if I should change something.

I did some more thought-processing for my life con assignment.  Mainly just gathering ideas and formulae together. I'm getting together with Timbo and Dustin tomorrow to work on it.  Oh what fun that will be.

For dinner I made some fish and asparagus that Clifton left for  me, since he went home and didn't want it to go bad.  I don't even feel like what I did was cooking... I put them in their respective skillets, added some oil and spices, and turned the heat on.  But whatever you call that, dinner was made.  The asparagus wasn't too bad.  I don't remember liking it, but I'd definitely try it again.  I just have no idea what to do with it.  I just put some garlic salt on it, which is my go-to spice.  Love that stuff.

After dinner... I don't remember doing anything super productive.  I probably didn't.  I think that one of the most valuable things I've learned during grad school is that when I need to work, I do it without any distractions.  And when I need to relax, I do that without any distractions.  I guess I've learned to be intentional in most things.  That way I don't fall into my classic study habit of having my text book open... and not really studying.  I think that's the worst because I'm not getting studying done, but I'm also not really enjoying the fact that I'm not studying because I feel like I should be doing work (which I should be).  So instead, when I take a break, no thought of school enters my mind.  And when I work (hopefully) I don't think of anything but work.  When my mind starts to wander too much, I take a break.  Otherwise I'm just wasting time.  That's helped me be more efficient and just get more stuff done.

In other news, I think that after I'm done with my pills I'm going to go see a dermatologist.  Nearly 3 weeks in and my rash has only gotten a little bit better.  According to everything I've read, it could have cleared up in a couple of days.  Now, that certainly doesn't have to be the case... but almost 3 weeks with little clearing?  I just don't feel like it will be all cleared up in the next week.  But we'll see.

Ok.  Time for bed.  Night!


Day 290

I had big hopes for today.  I guess there's always tomorrow.

My morning was fairly productive.  After I ate and showered I went to the Verizon store to have them look at my phone.  I've been having trouble with the charger staying in, so I decided that I would finally take it in.  The guy was very helpful and after he was able to get a hold of the right number they sent my phone, which should get here on Monday.  He was very apologetic for (of?) how long it took.  He tried calling 3 different support numbers, but they all claimed to not be the right person to call.  But he kept trying and eventually talked with someone who would help out.  So that should be here on Monday.

When I got back I had the rest of my chicken and pasta for lunch.  This afternoon I played Assassin's Creed for a while, added a new recipe to my recipe blog, and did some dishes.  While I made dinner, I learned a valuable lesson: don't try to bake biscuits in microwave.  I had my dinner in the oven and it used 8 of my 10 biscuits.  So I thought I would experiment and see what happened when I tried to bake the remaining 2 in the microwave.  I'll tell you what happened.  They burned.
So I spent the next bit of time opening the windows, turning on fans..... fun stuff like that.  But the smoke detector didn't go off, so it was a victory.

After dinner I continued to be super productive.  And by that I mean.... I put dishes in the dish washer.  It's very frustrating to open the dish washer and have no idea whether something is clean or dirty.  It's very common to put something through the dish washer and have it come out greasy.  So I don't know if I ran it and some of the things did get washed, or I just didn't run it.  I'm excited to live somewhere with a working dish washer.  I might have maintenance come look at it, but the other people I've talked to who live in Windermere say that their dishwashers are about as useless.  So I'm assuming it's just another case of the managers taking advantage of college students who usually don't know any better.

Anyhow.  Not  much else happened the rest of the evening.  I was going to do laundry, but I'm out of dryer sheets.  Bleh.  So... I'm not sure if I'm going to just do without or try to survive until Saturday when I go shopping.  We'll see!

Ok.  Time for bed.  Have a good night/day or such.  I'm guessing that most people will read this after they wake up... not before they go to bed.  Oh well.  Good night.


Day 289

Wow, I really lost track of time.  It's late.. and I'm tired.

Ok.  So.  I actually slept in this morning.  I didn't get up until 9:30!  It was crazy.  I wasn't really hungry when I got up, so I didn't eat breakfast. Oh well.

After checking my email/Facebook/Reddit, I took a shower and planned my day...which didn't take too long.  I decided to go out to the Verizon store to have them look at my phone, then take a short grocery shopping trip so that I have food to eat until Saturday.

So I went to Verizon.  It wasn't busy, so one of the guys working there was able to  help me right away.  I explained that my phone charger is not staying in, either with the charger that came with my phone or with my older charger.  Unfortunately, I didn't have the necessary account information, so there wasn't really anything he could do for me.  I'm guessing that it's because I hadn't gotten my phone from that store.  It wasn't really a big deal, so I'll probably go back tomorrow.  Afterwards I went to Aldi to get some food.  I've started to relax a little bit about getting snacks.  I used to be very strict on myself to not get snacks because they're frivolous and not necessary.  Then I realized that an extra $3 every couple of weeks isn't going to kill me.  So I got some chips and salsa.  I'm going to try a new recipe this week (not using chips and salsa), so I had to get some ground turkey and cheese.  What else did I get... Oh yeah.  Tomato sauce.  I'm probably going to make that tomorrow.

So when I got home I put groceries away.  I played Team Fortress for a bit, then I played "Kinect Adventures" on Kimmy's Xbox.  It was pretty fun.  It's a very active game and after about 30 minutes I was starting to sweat.  But it's a fun game.

I decided to be productive, so I cleaned my room.  Then I started looking at the project that's due on Tuesday.  Boy, it's going to be so much fun!  If I can figure out what's going on (and I think I'm close), it shouldn't be too bad.  I hope.  So I went through the 5 or so different emails he sent us and the related documents and tried to fit pieces together.  I also made a new Gmail filter for all emails sent by my professors.  I felt like that was a smart idea.

For dinner I just made some chicken and noodles.  Probably about a month ago Aldi had a "special buy" of Asian noodles.  So got a couple bags because they were all of 70 cents.  So I made one of them tonight with some chicken.  It was pretty good.  I didn't think of it at the time, but I should have cooked the chicken in teriyaki sauce instead of just putting some sauce on my chicken.  Oh well.  It was still good.

After dinner I began a new project: a recipe blog!  You might have noticed the new addition to my blog page.  Up above should be a bar with "Home" and "My Recipes."  If you click on the "My Recipes" button, you will be taken to a new page.  That was my project this evening.  Let me know what you think of it!  I'm probably going to tweak it some more tomorrow.  I have no idea how often I'm going to update it once school starts, but hopefully I can get most of the recipes that I make included tomorrow.  I'll be sure to indicate on here when I've updated it.

So I worked on that for most of the evening.  Then I played some more video games, browsed more internet... and now it's bed time.


Day 288


So, I woke up today around 8:30.  I slept in Timbo's room last night and Dustin slept in the guest room.  All of my stuff was in the guest room, so when I went in there I was surprised to see that Dustin was awake.  Apparently he came down with some sort of bug over the night and was feeling pretty miserable.  So I ran down to the store and got him some Sprite.  Then I went down to where Timbo was watching some TV, got some cereal, and joined him.  We were watching a show called "Cash Cab," where people take a taxi that just happens to be hosting a game show.  What happens is the taxi driver asks the people questions as he takes them to their destination, earning money as they get questions correct.  If you miss three questions, you have to walk the rest of the way.  But if you answer correctly, you get to keep whatever money you won (usually a few hundred dollars).  It was pretty interesting.  Between Dustin, Timbo, and myself we actually knew most of the answers.  It was pretty entertaining.

Then I took a shower.  I felt much better afterwards.

When I got back, there was a special on the history channel about "surviving the apocalypse" or something.  It was really good.  It was basically a show about what would happen if some disease killed most of the population.  Knowing my love of zombie-lore, Dustin and Timbo both figured I'd like it.  Which I did.  They definitely brought in some points I had never considered.  Like the fact that if the infection is passed through fluid exchange, you could touch the skin of someone with the disease (or a dead person) without getting sick.  Anyhow, the show was really cool because the interviewed a lot of experts in different areas (sociology professors, city officials, camping/outdoor survival instructors, etc) to explain what would happen from their perspective.  It was pretty cool.

After that, we watched part of another special on what would happen if an asteroid hit the earth.  We got into a discussion about the earth how old it is and everything.  Dustin made a comment about how he doesn't understand why people would believe that the earth is only a few thousand years old simply because a book says so, when science indicates that it is much older.  So I explained two things.  1: if you believe that there is a God, then it's not a huge step to imagine that he could create the earth whenever he wanted to in whatever form was convenient.  2: No one can prove anything about ancient history.  We can speculate until we're blue in the face, but we can't prove anything.  Scientific evidence can suggest a certain idea, but there is no way to know what actually happened... say 7000 years ago. We might have some very educated guesses, but that's all.  And related to that is confirmation bias.  If you believe that the earth is millions of years old, then any evidence you see will confirm this idea (an asteroid collision would fit well with visible craters and the extinction of animals.  But if you believe that the earth is younger and/or that the biblical account is (reasonably) accurate and that there was a large flood* then you are more inclined to see evidence in that light.

*So I just had a thought.  In many cultures there are stories of large flood that ravaged civilization.  In the thing I watched earlier today, they made it very clear that if an asteroid or some celestial body hit the ocean, it would send water into the sky that would eventually fall down like rain and there would be massive tsunamis.  What if these are the same?  I have done exactly 0 research on the topic (about the same amount of research that I feel supporters of Pangea have done... but that's another story), but what if there was a literal asteroid storm that just decimated the earth for 40 days and 40 nights?  Just a thought.

Eventually when Dustin was feeling a little better we came back to Muncie.  When I got back to my apartment I unpacked, then made some dinner.  Tonight was leftovers and sauteed "I have old vegetables!"  They were both edible.  Then I just... relaxed.  It was nice.

Clifton got back early evening, so we talked for a bit, then he had a friend over.  And now... I'm tired.  So I'm going to bed.  Night!


Day 287

I woke up this morning around 830. I kind of slept in! It was nice. I got some breakfast, then showered and played games in my phone for a while. Then Dustin got up, we talked for a bit, then we started to get our stuff packed up.
Amber got home around 1230, so we talked with her for a minute, then headed out. We had quite the drive ahead of us.
It was mainly uneventful. Lots of snow at first, but not too bad.  We stopped to get gas and food, but otherwise it was pretty uneventful.
We got to Timbo's house around 540. We sat around and talked for a little bit, then got ready to get sushi! I met his parents, then we talked with his dad for a bit.  He wanted to know where Dustin and I were from and such.  I like him. So we told more about our background and the program.
Timbo lives about 20 minutes south of Cincinnati, so we went up there to get some sushi.  And now we're just hanging out up here, probably going home in the near future. Yup! So.. Almost good night!