Sunday, February 26, 2006

birth order quiz

You Are Likely A Fourth Born

At your darkest moments, you feel angry.
At work and school, you do best when your analyzing.
When you love someone, you tend to be very giving.

In friendship, you don't take the initiative in reaching out.
Your ideal jobs are: factory jobs, comedy, and dentistry.
You will leave your mark on the world with your own personal philosophy.

Correct - I was the fourth (and last) child. I don't know about the "ideal jobs" suggestions, though.

(The site has all sorts of silly quizzes...)

8th grade math

You Passed 8th Grade Math

Congratulations, you got 10/10 correct!

My graduate degree in operations research (applied math) actually helped ;-)

A matter of taste?

Saturday, February 25, 2006

World traveler

I visited five countries at the MSU International Food Bazaar this evening: Malaysia, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, India, and Germany. Yum.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Old grain elevator

This disused grain elevator is located between I-90 and Oak Street in NE Bozeman, Montana. Pigeons like to congregate on the roof (and maybe inside, as well).

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Narnia - overanalyzed

The Narnia flick was recently shown at the MSU Student Union, so I figured I'd write a short theological discourse ;-) (Yes, yes, the Narnia books were written for very young children and can't stand up to much analysis. But I can't help myself.)

In The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe book, Aslan wakes up from a hundred-year catnap, finds Narnia in a deep-freeze, and calls the four Pevensie kids to help set things right. Edmund betrays his siblings to the White Witch, and thus becomes her "lawful prey." Edmund is saved from death when Aslan takes Edmund's place. After being slain by a quick thrust of a knife, Aslan dies. He comes back, however, because of a heretofore unknown rule (the Deeper Magic).

Aslan's death and resurrection parallel the "classical theory" of atonement that held sway over Christian thinking until about A.D. 1000. According to this theory, humanity was enslaved to Satan as a consequence of sin. Satan thought he was making quite the bargain with God when God offered up his Son to be sacrificed in humanity's place. In a cosmic version of Calvinball, Satan was unaware of the game's actual rules, and lost everything.

Did Aslan sacrifice himself to save all of Narnia, or just Edmund? All of Narnia, since Narnia was only going to be saved if the four Pevensie kids occupied to the four thrones.

So there you go - an analysis by a non-religious resident of Montana. I can think of several Montana bloggers who could offer other perspectives: Zen, Objectivist, Catholic, Franciscan, Jewish, Pagan...

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A house on Babcock Street

Luxury living in Bozeman, Montana.

Free sample

I received a free sample of .... gardenia-scented body lotion. Woo-hoo!

Monday, February 20, 2006


Flash version of one my favorite arcade games: Qix.

My gift-giving needs satisfied

Roulette Chocolate

Lone Mountain Gymnastics

This gymnastics studio is being built in a renovated industrial space on the NW corner of Rouse and Oak in Bozeman, Montana.

Redevelopment: Oak and Rouse

A large site on the NW corner of Rouse and Oak is being redeveloped. As near as I can tell, the site formerly housed a steel fabricator.

Oh frabjous day!

The pic shows my most recent shipment from Amazon. Coincidentally, I received a check from book publisher McGraw-Hill (for reviewing a book) on the very same day.

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Thursday, February 16, 2006

MSU: narrow door

This incredibly narrow door is located on the 4th floor of Roberts Hall. I would be unable to pass through this door unless I turned sideways.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Skiing in 1941

I recently purchased a ski video from 1941: The basic principles of skiing. My main conclusion: I'm glad I didn't start skiing 'til the 2000s.

Mistakes made by Mac newbies

Top 30 mistakes made by new Mac users

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Happy Valentines Day

I own a single pair of earrings. I got them at a jewelry store in the Salt Lake City airport, of all the unlikely places (Spirit of the Red Horse). Unfortunately, I broke up with my then-GF before I had a chance to give them to her. (This was several years ago, so you can hold the sympathy.)

So what can I do with a tasteful pair of silver earrings shaped like horses? Maybe I'll get a piercing myself...

Monday, February 13, 2006

English fantasy fiction

I recently re-read two very long English fantasies: Tolkien's Lord of the Rings and Pullman's His Dark Materials. After careful consideration, I must declare that I prefer Pullman's book to Tolkien's.

Of course, Pullman and Tolkien were trying to do two very different things when writing their stories. Pullman was trying to re-imagine the Fall from a humanistic viewpoint. Tolkien was trying to "sub-create" a world as a backdrop to his invented languages, such as Klingon (oops, I meant Quenya ;-).

Thinking over all the Tolkien material I've read, I think the short story Farmer Giles of Ham is my favorite. At least, I needn't fear uttering "not another elf" when reading it.

Update (2/14): Tom Bombadil == Winnie the Pooh ?
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Glass building

This glass building is located in the parking lot of US Bank in downtown Bozeman.

I have a proposal for US Bank: fill the glass building with crumpled dollar bills. Then offer the money as a prize to whoever guesses the correct amount.

Bozeman blogs - latest list

Here are the blogs in "semi URL alphabetical" order...

The Best of the Bozeman Chronicle Police Reports (place)

Blogs against the government (politics)

Bozeman Engineers (expert)

bozeman-mt (place, personal)

Bouncer Blog (personal, place)

Cascade Neighbors (place)

Bozeman's Beaten Path (adventure)

A chicken is not pillage (politics, personal)


The Dude Abides (adventure, personal)

Easy and tasty recipes (expert)

Geocaching in Bozeman, Montana (place, adventure)

Gothy and the Least (humor)

Inside Out (place)

In the Mind of a Gangsta (personal)

jesse_james (personal)

Jesse Newland (personal) (expert)

Lemon Curry? (personal)

Life in Bozeman Montana (place, personal)

liftedlorax (personal)

logistica-design (expert) (place, adventure)

The Monkey Cage (humor)

Montana Man (personal, place)

Montana Ramblings and My Thoughts Here (personal)

My Crazed World (personal)

New Economic Literary Theory

Rambling Thoughts (personal)

Revolving Duck (personal, adventure, place)

Ron's Montana Musings (personal, ideas)

Rose Colored Cynicism (politics, personal)

Speedkill (ideas, adventure)

Strong Copy Builds Brands (business)

Theresa (Steel Tears) (personal)

A thought over coffee (adventure, place)

this be my shiny page (personal) Bozeman (place)

The vulgar ravings of a drunken, Irish Catwoman (personal)

Wisdom Journal

Apparently Defunct: You all should know better (personal), Oral Traditions

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Lend me a hand

Here is a list of literary characters I've encountered who have a missing, malformed, or mutilated hand. I would welcome any additions to the list.

Will Parry, one of the protagonists of Pullman's His Dark Materials, loses the two small fingers of his left hand to "the subtle knife." The resulting wound marks him as the "Knife Bearer" and is important in the remainder of the trilogy.

Frodo Baggins, protagonist of Tolkien's Lord of the Rings, has one of his fingers bit off by Gollum in the climax of the final volume.

Mannie, the protagonist of Heinlein's The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, lost a complete arm in a mining accident. This took place before the events recounted in the novel.

Ijon Tichy, in Lem's Peace on Earth, suffers a severed corpus callosum when investigating some mysterious incidents on the moon. His consciousness is governed by the left hemisphere of his brain. His left hand, however, is separately controlled by his brain's right hemisphere. It has a "mind of its own", as it were.

Saruji, a very minor character in Clavell's Shogun, has a withered/twisted right hand - he can't handle a samurai sword correctly. He is the son of Mariko.

Arabian Nights - several characters get their thumbs or complete hands chopped off.

One of the main characters in The English Patient had his thumbs chopped off.

Note: I have ignored literary instances of stigmata.

Saturday, February 11, 2006


The mural is on the east side of Ace Hardware in downtown Bozeman, Montana.

Ski: Day 8

I set a personal record today: my longest fall. I must have slid at least 50 meters down Deer Park Face (at Bridger Bowl). I guess any fall you can ski away from is a "good fall", right?

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Two more Bozeman blogs

Strong Copy Build Brands

Montana Man - includes photos

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Tuesday, February 07, 2006

PSA (Public Service Ad)

When the little ad section on the right says "Public Service Ad", it means that Google Ads is not able to match any of my recent posts to any advertiser's "key words."

With a normal ad, the advertiser pays a small amount every time someone clicks the ad (and some of that moolah eventually filters down to me). With PSAs, however, rest assured that clicking does not cost the charity any money.

So, if you see a PSA that interests you, please click it.


I recently re-listened to The Golden Compass. Lyra (the main character) travels to another world through the aurora borealis. That puts me in mind of some lights I'd like to see:

Aurora (Borealis or Australis)

Bioluminescence: I've seen plenty of fireflies (though not in Bozeman). I would like to someday see the milky sea.

Supernova: The soon-to-be Crab nebula went supernova in 1054. Wikipedia says it was visible during the day (and night) for 23 days.

Cherenkov radiation

Stephen King's It gave me the willies, so I have no desire to see the "deadlights."

Chili dogs always bark at night

In recognition of the newly arrived Year of the Dog, I have resolved to eat chili dogs more ofen this year.

In somewhat related culinary news, I have declared "freedom from fries": I will try to avoid french fries, onion rings, etc.

Meta: Revised Bozeman blogroll

I revised my Bozeman blogroll (on the right of the blog). I added several newly-discovered blogs. If you know of any I missed, please leave a comment.

I'll post the revised list in a blog entry in a few days so that others can easily link to it.

The following two blogs dropped off the list since they are apparently defunct: Oral Traditions (this was for a class at MSU, apparently), and You all should know better (which has the most user-unfriendly background image of any blog I've ever seen).

More Bozeman blogs

The Dude Abides - adventure/personal

Chrismukkah - the merry mish-mash holiday Bozeman

Nicole Didier: Wisdom Journal, New Economic Literary Theory, Oral Traditions

Blogs against the government

Sunday, February 05, 2006

MSU: another book lover

Gaze into my red beady eyes...


I found this little spider near my telephone a few weeks ago. A confirmed fan of spiders, I let it be.

MSU: Book lover

A plastic lizard to keep watch over my books.

MSU: a bookcase

One of my office bookcases.

MSU: Roberts 302

Here's a view of my office. There's a little bit of clutter, but less than a couple of months ago.