Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Alterac Valley

15 seconds until resurrection.

The Horde control a graveyard just across from our last outpost. They swarm as a, well as a horde. The bridge itself if a madhouse of blood and carnage. If I can get across that bridge and recapture that graveyard, the alliance will have it's victory. If no one does, our defeat is almost guaranteed.


My first path is a straight run down our bases main road.
Undead warrior on my right
Sheep on my right, sucker.

I run further, leaving my wool laden foe behind me. I come up to the bridge. This is where the real problems begin.

Perception cooldown, 2 minutes remain.
Just as I use perception I see an undead rogue behind me. In 3 seconds he's going to ambush me, and probably kill me.
Ice Block
Ice block cooldown, 5 minutes remaining. I'll probably be dead by then
Just as he swings I encase myself in a protective barrier of ice. I'm completely invincible while I'm in this state. I can't move, but that's not the point. He abandons me to move onto one of my teammates. Ice block wears off, I still have 9/10s of the bride to go.

A lot, a lot of horde on my right, a giant chasm on my left.
Frost Nova
Frost Nova Cooldown, 15 seconds remain
The horde are frozen in place. Most of them, One shaman breaks through and comes for me. He's at 80% of his health.
14 seconds remaining

Cone of Cold
13 seconds remaining

I jump off the bridge. He follows.
I cast Slow Fall
He just falls.

10 seconds remaining

I majestically glide to the ground below me. Summon my black stallion and charge uphill, I'll attack the graveyard the back way.
I crest the hill.
Five Seconds remaining
4 tauren NPC guards are on the flag, and one Orcish warrior. If I capture that flag we win.
4 Tauren NPC guards and a sheep. I love that spell. The Taurens don't, they charge.
Cone of Cold
They charge much more slowly, not frozen in place but deeply chilled. If they reach me I'm dead. I may have magic powers, but I'm also a guy wearing purple robes. Magic purple robes, but robes nonetheless. They're 8 foot tall Minotaur people with equally oversized Axes. I'd make a phallic symbol joke here, but I'm running for my life.
Four seconds remaining


Three seconds

They're getting closer

Two seconds

Cone of cold's chill effect wears off, I'm doomed.

One Second



YES!!! I circle around my frozen pursuers, and head for the flag. I grab it.

Now I just have to hold it for 30 seconds. Oh right, I forgot about that bit. The people on the bridge, who are 2 seconds walk away from me didn't. I cringe as my screen lights up with no end of various forms of fiery doom. It was a good try.

15 Seconds until resurrection.

Why I didn't do my chores today

Ok. I put off the christmas lights all of yesterday. Today I'm going to do it. Triumphantly I emerge from the garage, extension cord, lights, and no end of other electrical gear in hand.

Drip drip.

You've won this time nature.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Holy Wrath

 Posted by Picasa

Flamewing, The Betrayer

 Posted by Picasa


 Posted by Picasa


 Posted by Picasa

Screen Shots

I'm on a short break from my post completion pre deadline editing spree on my paper which is my final for comp lit. I'm quite confident about it, but that may due to the fact that justin seems to think I know everything about the class, and has asked me for help several times. Ego is annoying isn't it? Anyway, because this is a short break I can't do anything substantial, so I flipped through my World of Warcraft sceen shots. The best of them are posted


 Posted by Picasa

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Knowingly In The Presence

I’m not sure if an R.A. will tell you this story, and if they inform you at all it’s going to be in a concise way that won’t tell you the real story. Below is the real story. The facts have not been changed to convey more guild or innocence then actually exists. Some of the dialogue has been altered because it was either unnecessary or I just don’t remember exactly what was said.

Shortly before midnight, Saturday December 10th. In my world Fatio and Lebniz are arguing over whether a hypothetical object can have perspective, if having perspective will give it a soul, and the greater implications of that. In the world around me Conrad and roughly seven of his friends are celebrating / partying. Whatever they call it when they hang around in our room drinking listening to music and conversing. The music is of mediocre quality, and I have my privacy screen up so it doesn’t bug me. The person it does bug is the R.A. It’s finals week so we’re on a 24 hour quiet hour. Normally one can be as loud as one damn well pleases until 2 a.m. on a weekend. Today is not part of normally. Conrad has forgotten this. There’s a knock on the door which nobody hears, including me. I know it happened because the R.A. told us when she first knocked.

Her name is Sarah and she’s a nice person overall, but in this story she’s a scary Authority Figure, so we’ll continue to refer to her as “The R.A.”

There’s a second knock on the door, this one I do hear.
“Conrad! door. Or one of Conrad’s friends, Door!”
I’m lying down and reading, they’re already standing so my laziness disguises itself as logic and I don’t go to open it. Neither do Conrad’s friends. Remember this was triggered by a noise ordinance.
Max: “CONRAD! Door Damn it!”
Conrad: “Who is it?”
Conrad’s Friend #1 “It’s the R.A.” She says it in the dread voice that people use to say things like “The Tumor is malignant” or “he didn’t make it.” Once this registers through Conrad’s hazed mind there’s a lot of profanity and rushing around, the end product is that a bunch of people are standing suspiciously close together and blocking the view of our back shelf / windowsill thing. When you have three people living in a 15’ by 10’ (tops) space you have to learn that everything is a shelf. Especially the floor. Anyway, 5 minutes after the first knock one of Conrad’s friends opens the door. I’ve since gone back to reading.

R.A.: “Ok you guys step aside. All the way aside. Yeah that’s what I thought. Bring me all the alcohol in the room.” You can probably fill in what happened during that speech on your own.
R.A.: “I need you guy’s I.D.s”
Conrad’s Friend #4: “What if we don’t go here?”
R.A.: “State identification.” Conrad’s friends get out the relevant cards. Only some of them go to UW so in addition a few Washington state drivers licenses are passed forward. At this point I lean forward sleepily out of my screened in area. If I haven’t mentioned it yet I was half-asleep when this whole fiasco began. In retrospect I could probably have avoided detection entirely if I had simply feigned sleep and not come out from behind the curtain, but that’s retrospect and a lot of good it does me now.
Max: “I’m here too.” I offer forth my UW card and my Texas state driver’s license. “Sorry for the delay I’m tired and as you can see there’s a bit of a human wall between me and you.”
Sarah (for that one instant she wasn’t as scary): “No problem.”
R.A.: “You know what tipped us off? There’s a weird smell coming from the room, your subwoofer is rattling things 2 rooms away, and it took you guys 5 minutes to open the door.”
Conrad: “Well couldn’t hear it at first…”
R.A.: “We say someone looking through the peephole and it was still 5 minutes before you opened it.”
Max: “If this is a liquor thing can I just take a breathalyzer test?”
Conrad: “Yeah, just test him he’s clean.”
R.A.: “No we won’t be testing. You all signed a dorm contract when you got here, it was on your bed when you first entered, that said that being knowingly in the presence of alcohol was a violation.”

Well, I can’t deny that I was knowingly in the presence. So I’m guilty on that count. What matters to me right then is that I’m the only one in the room that can truthfully say that I haven’t been drinking. In fact I can only recall 3 or 4 times I’ve drank something alcoholic recently, and those 4 times are all amazingly similar. In fact, I gave the same toast each time. Baruch ata Adoni, Eloheniu melch ha’olam, porey pari ha’gaffen. Amen. For those of you that don’t know that’s the Jewish sacrament over the wine as part of a Kiddush ceremony. All that aside though…

Conrad, speaking directly too me while the R.A. deals with his friends who are trying to protest. “I’ll just say you only got here two minutes ago.” It’s nice that he was trying to protect me, but fruitless.
Max: “Conrad they were here for fie minutes before you opened the door; they’ll know your lying.”
Conrad: “No man, I’ll just say you got here like two minutes before…”
Max: “Conrad, No lies. You’re not sober enough to be clever right now. I’ll take care of myself. The Truth shall set me free.”

We got our I.D. cards back and Conrad’s friends tried to argue some more, but they didn’t have a good case, and if they had a good case they wouldn’t have been sober enough to argue it well. The R.A. summed up our punishments a few times because of the previously mentioned lack of sobriety. I’ll get an e-mail from the R.D. eventually to arrange a time to meet with her. They won’t inform my parents, or so they say, but I think it’s a story you guys deserve to know so I’m posting this. I haven’t been kicked out of the dorm, and I don’t think any legal charges will be filed against me. The R.A. and Conrad went to the kitchenette and dumped out all of the liquor they confiscated. Once they got back and the R.A. had left the real act of stupidity occurred. Conrad pulled out of some hiding place or another the rest of his liquor, and his friends began rapidly consuming it all.

Max: “Damnit Conrad! What did I just tell you about lies? When the R.A. comes to your room and catches you in the act it’s over. Game Over, time to surrender. The consequences weren’t that bad this time but if they find out you we’re lying they won’t hold anything back.”
Conrad: “Don’t worry man we’re just gonna kill all of it now.”
Max, in the process of leaving the room: “Conrad that is Fucking Damn Retarded. If this happens again I’m selling you all up the river to protect myself.”
I went off to go read in the lounge until they had wandered off. Where they went I do not know.

The Full consequences of this little adventure are yet to be played out, but according to Sarah the meeting probably won’t take place until winter quarter.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Thinking too much

It's finals week. Or pre-finals week Weekend anywa. Amongst other things people are unsually sober this weekend. It's creepy. It's a new form of the sensation that a place it too quiet.

The other key tradtion of finals week, the first being sobriety, is thinking too much. Thinking too much in this case means following your intuition along a semi-logical chain of thoughts that leads you not only through the area off the beaten path that is the spawning grounds of inspiration, but past that into the rough areas where you can't even see the path and madness begins to close in. I am guilty of this myself.

In my last paper for this course I reached a moment of clarity and suddden insight through laborious overthought. I feel like I'm on the edge of one again in this paper, but in my attepts to snatch this etherial genius in my material claw I've come up with some really really weird theories. The weirdest is below. It's an excerpt from my raw raw raw outline for my paper. The Raw^3 outline is basically me brainstorming and typing out every thought that's even borderline worthwhile.

Prior to the war both men we’re arranged to be married in a typical Mclifestyle 1950s American way. After the war both of them have conflicts with their marriage. Fred has it revealed to him that he wasn’t with the right woman. Homer has is revealed to him that Wilma still loves him even though hes de craw!. In both cases woman is the means of clarity. So too is the bedroom the place of transition into clarity.
Bedroom as a womb? Fits with the rebirth thing
The Men have to come to see something more clearly. Woman facilitates this change. The critical point of change occurs in a bedroom in the company of a woman, but in neither case is it a sexual thing.
Is it really not a sexual thing? Passive implication? It seems unlikely given the era in which this film was made but that could be liberal bias.
After Man overcomes whatever his impeiment to clarity was he accepts woman into his life, the same woman that facilitated his clarity, and becomes happier for it. Men achieve this clarity by taking woman into the bedroom, exposing mans weakness, accepting womans help, and accepting woman into their life
Sex again, Lust is the great disarmer of the male mind, perhaps the fact that they make themselves vulnerable in the presence of woman in the bedroom, then by accepting woman achieve clarity is all a giant metaphor for physical birth expressed by the metaphorical rebirth of man. It’s an unusually raw form of metaphor for rebirth, but is a metaphor for rebirth nonetheless. Womb (bedroom) seed (man at state of weakness) Mother (woman who has completed man by bolstering him where he is weak) Father (Man who has accepted woman into his life) Child (Man with clarity) I like this one becomes seed becomes child through the actions of the womb and the mother. Weird pregnancy methaphor, weird Weird metaphor overall but possible. Also somewhat demeaning to the man, who doubles as the role of child. If this were a culture that valued the earthmother theory it may make more sense, but as is it seems off. The man is only father through the actions of the woman, and otherwise child. This could be a good argument for my "demeaning to man" thing, or jsut a refelction of my passive concern that I'm stuck in the inferior gender. It’s also possible that we’ve taken this train of thought too far.

Don't worry though, I have a much more reasonable argument readied as well. If I finish this paper with time to spare I'm going to write up a short version of the bedroom as womb earth mother pregnancy rebirth interperatation, but it'll be a personal intrest proposal, not a real paper.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Schedule Conflict

We're sorry, the testing office didn't add you to the system

We're sorry, the testing office is closed for thanksgiving break

We're sorry, the testing office is closed on mondays

We're sorry, the testing office is closed at 4:45

We're sorry, this isn't a matter for the testing office, you'll have to go talk to the department

We're sorry, the department representative you need isn't here right now

This is the voicemail of Naomi Sokoloff, We're Sorry we missed you, please leave a message and we'll call back.

"Hi I got your call earlier... ...I'm sorry, could you just send me an e-mail, I'll get back to you later."

Finally I got in. Personally I think I should be allowed to skip the first week of that class based on the bloody screaming uphill battle it was to get into the section. It turns out the placement test was the easiest part.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005


I'm a firm believer in using vernacular contractions in text based conversations (World of Warcraft) but doing so only with proper punctuation. Example

Other gamer: Whered you find that, Ive been looking but i cant find anything similar.
Max: I've been looking for something that'd do basically this for a while.
Max: You can't find an item that'll allow you to do it regularly though, because this one is a quest item.

This brings me to my curent problem. How do you properly punctuate the word "wadja"

What did you

Wa'd'ja? It seems wrong to have two "'"s in a single contration. It's annoying particularly because Where'd ya, and how'd ya are both 2 word phases. Only with the word "what" do you get the single word for the full question. My current thinking is that you'd leave it entirelly unpuncuated, based on the word "dunno"

I don't know

"Dunno" is used frequently in that form. No punctuation is applied at all. However its a fairly common word, and the lack of punctuation could be based on standard gamer laziness. I've used the TLA IDK to solve this.

TLA = Three Letter Acronym. Yes I'm aware of the irony of this.
IDK = I don't know

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Critical Hit

Gather round children (I'm actually younger then anyone who reads this, but just go with it) and hear the story of my Essay.

No comparative literature is no simple class, It is one that cannot be bested by simple effort, but it truly a test of your insight and inborn talent. Now the class is comprised of some three-hundred people, roughly 5 of which are on my floor. Of the ten and five score of us I am one of the lone few who asks any kind of question. I'm also the only one who has raised an effective challenge to anything he's said. There's a standard presenter rule to never show direct defeat, but he did give the equivalent which is "come talk to me after class about that." As such I am assumed to be extremely good at that class. This may or may not be true, but it's an assumption and in the mind of a college student that's good enough. This made me somewhat of a Buddha figure on my floor, insofar as Justin and a girl whose name I don't know would routinely come to me for help, either with questions or asking me to read their essay and make changes to it. I found this mildly amusing and never much of an inhibition, plus it was something I filed into the category of "generally a Good Thing To Do"

My essay was done 3 days before it was due, which I considered a monumental achievement, but being done only means that it's complete and would probably get a passing grade. It goes through stage after stage of revision before it''s actually handed in. It was done (expected grade B) at around 19 hours before being due at which point I had a revelation

Potential cannot exist in short term time because it's a purely reactionary timeframe, Only in long term time can the idea of promise or potential exist, and only in a moment of clarity in long term time can we accurately see that potential

That's not important right now, but that is, I think, the driving message or idea we were supposed to figure out. I spent the majority of those next 19 hours rewriting my paper to fit around this new burst of insight I had. Damnit all that readiness for nothing! I didn't bother to share it with anyone though. Because I spent so much of time rewriting to fit this new idea I was unable to go up to Justin or unnamed girl and say "Hey, throw out your old essays I just figured out something that's gonna blow it out of the water" I feel bad about that, but it's way too late now.

I got that essay back today.



The most amusing, albeit slightly evil, part of this is the standard post essay "How did you do" thing. I avoid asking and only say when asked (My parents are concerned about my grades so this blog post doesn't violate this rule, if they knew I'd gotten it back they would have asked.) because I think it causes less problems that way. One of the many curses of masculinity is the inborn drive of one-up-manship. I've mostly overcome that but it's still a thing males do that makes me sad to be a part of our fraternal order. Anyway Justin came up to me after class with a standard male "I just did something great, I'm going to beat someone at this because I did well" look on his face and asked the standard "How'ed you do on the essay" I responded in a nonchalant way "4.0" he immediately deflated and just kind of wandered off. Unnamed girl (I really should learn her name) asked how I did while I was walking down the hall earlier, when told she just said "oh" and just kind of wandered off. I admit I take guilty pleasure in this (I haven't fully suppressed my drive to be better then rather then simply good) but I think it's also a look at the potentially damaging nature of contest. I could go into a full rant at this point but the entire thing can be summarized at "I'm not sure if contest is good because it motivates some and anti-motivates others. This means that it's a force of change with a net effect of 0, in the same way that the continuous cycle of death and recreation is, making it part of the universes pattern of constant equal change, all relating around the fact that the only constant is change, and that change is inherent to existence."

Thursday, December 01, 2005


First off, the use of the phrase "X-Mas" I'm not doing this as a contraction as much as I am doing it because I celebrate X-Mas more as a secular American holiday then a religious thing. This may sound like I don't respect X-Mas, but I sincerely enjoy it, I think it's a crucial part of the American economy, and I think the concept of a gift giving day is a good concept both from a socio-economic point of view, and just as a nice tradition. And if your lucky enough to use the holiday to foster goodwill and kindness (which you technically should do no matter what season it is) then all the better.

Also, it's now December, so I'm now allowed to do X-Mas related stuff. It's my strict linear holiday practice which basically forbids me from doing Thanksgiving stuff before Halloween, X-Mas stuff before Thanksgiving, New Years stuff before X-Mas (this is why my New Years preparations are always hurried at best) etc. I never put much stock by St. Valentines day or Easter, but if I did do things for them the same rules would apply.

I've already gotten asked the question "What do you want for Christmas" (The person who was asking probably doesn't hold to the X-Mas thing, so that wasn't a typo or a slip of policy) I feel awkward answering that question because it seems like I'm asking for things without giving a very good reason why I should get them. So I'm willing to answer it on the condition that everyone who reads this Blog also tell me what they want for X-Mas. That said lets get down to heartless materialism.

Primarily I want Money. If you don't understand that refer to my "New Pentacle" thing
I'd like an entirely manual vacuum. One of the ones that you use like a push broom, but which has spinning brushes and a dust trap. I think it'd be useful for the dorm. It seems like it would be best to buy that in Seattle though. Then in a weird twist I'm going to ask for clothing.

First off I need more cargo jeans. I'm thoroughly convinced that whoever designed them did so specifically for me.

Also a vast array of assorted humorous / nerdy T Shirts

Clarification: there isn't a good way to link to specific Wickedjester shirts, the ones I have interest in are
Sarcastic/"Hello. I see the Assassins have failed"
Sarcastic/"Fight Crime. Shoot Back"

Also bonus points to anyone who realized that the Slash leads to a shirt which starts with the phrase "I'm here to kill you." I don't think that counts as a full joke, or even as a pun, but it mildly amused me briefly.

I could probably use a few of the Dungeons and Dragons 3.5 edition rule books, it's kinda shameful that the DM is acting off PDFs he got off the internet. But I might buy a few of those between now and X-Mas, and I'm not entirely sure they're necessary (I do have the PDFs after all)

Please let me know what you guys want.


The Following Dialogue takes place entirely in my head. The voices are numbered so that it will make sense, but no voice identifies with any avatar of any sort. It takes place while I was walking back from class this morning.

[2]Whoa! It was only sleet earlier.
[1]Isn't it supposed to get warmer as the day goes by?
[2]Max we both know by now that weather doesn't follow any rule that simple.

[1]I am frickin Freezing Today was not a good day to wear a T-shirt jeans and sandals
[2]Why did you wear a T-shirt jeans and sandals
[3]Has anyone else noticed that our +1 shirt gives us no bonus to our cold resistance?
[1 & 2 in unison] Shut, up.
[1]It's what I always wear
[2]Dude you have a window, you saw the sleet, why didn't you get your coat?
[1]I didn't notice it until I walked outside. And did you want to climb up 4 flights of stairs

[1]It's a shame it isn't sticking
[2]The snow won't stick until the ground is below 0
[1]Since when have we started using the metric system?
[3]Since 22:55 on 9-55-2005
[1]I wonder how weeks would work in metric time.
[3]10 weeks in a month 10 days in a week, It'd still fit in the 100 days per month and 10 months per year scheme.
[1]You'd completely wang the solar timing though
[2]Wait a sec. If the ground temperature, and hence the ambient temperature, is above freezing why is it snowing?
[1]Snow freezes in the stratosphere and then falls.
[3]What makes the stratosphere so cold
[1]heat lost to space?
[2]how would heat conduct across space, it's a vacuum?
[1]infrared light
[2]Heat energy in the form of molecular motion changes to heat energy in the form of infrared light in order to travel to areas of lower heat?
[1]It sounds like a sound concept but what would motivate it to...
[3]There's snow on that car
[1]It must have already been really cold in the car, so it stuck to the windshield
[2]Conrad was hoping it would snow and stick
[3]Conrad was up till 3 last night playing his new copy of Need for Speed, he's probably still asleep
[Everyone]*Evil Grin*
[1]Quick, make a snowball
[2]Is there enough?
[1]Yeah, but it's melting fast
[3]I can't feel my hands
[1]take one for the team
[2]Heheh "Heyconradwakeupit'ssnowing!" Bam!

In the end Conrad was already awake, I threw it at him anyway, but it wasn't as amusing as it could have been. It continues to snow, but isn't sticking in any signifigant way.

Eagle Court

I've gotten the news that winter camp isn't happening this year, so I have more freedom in choosing the day of my Eagle Court of Honor.

Wednesday December 28th, assuming there isn't a meeting then. If there is then I choose Tuesday the 27th, and my tirtiary is thursday the 29th. See the pattern?

Now, other then that I'm not sure how much of the planning I'm involved in. Do I need to write up a script? and if so does anyone have a copy of a script from a previous one? Is Humphery Hall availible? should I be the one checking on that?

All help is appreciated.

A La Carde

I have a dilemma. In two weeks the quarter ends. I have nearly $400 left on my UW food card. I don't think they give all of it back too, they may not even give any of the remainder back. This money, like all money, needs to be used in the best way possible*. There are some added complexities to this case though.

A: A La Carde has limited use. Only in the 1101 shops to my knowledge.
B: The Money isn't entirely mine. It was placed there so that I could have food and miscellaneous supplies.

I have a plan. There are some things that 1101 sells that are nonperishable and that I'll have a nearly infinite use for. Mechanical pencils, notecards, soap, diet coke, etc. I've also become fond of little spiral notebooks with the spiral on top. I'd like parental feedback first, but I've got a mind to go buy my next 15 quarters of school supplies.

I will of course also lower my meal plan for next quarter, but it's proving slightly more difficult then I thought it would be.

*This is still true when the best way to use it is passively, i.e. not use by retain it.