Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Yo ho ho, and a bottle of Schnapps! -- The Dread Captain Whitebeard (aka Santa Claus)

Jolly CringleWell, it's almost Christmas again. Right now, I'm sitting in my parents' living room, right next to the "Christmas Palm". It's an artificial Christmas (fir) tree, put together... slightly different. Doesn't look half-bad, if you ask me. We even wrapped the trunk with gold/brown ribbon. The lights on it make it look pretty cool... they're wrapped up the trunk, and form a kind of net in the branches... from outside, in the dark, you can't see the tree, but you can see the lights. Makes me think of the World-tree. I'll see if I can get a picture up.

Now, you might be wondering what all of this is about. Well, my family, at least for the past couple years, has had a 'theme' of the holidays. Last year's was 'Merry Freakin' Christmas'. This year's is... Pirates of the Arctic Circle.

Arrr!

Unfortunately, I didn't buy (or make) any gifts to go along with the theme this year... I was considering getting my sister a pirates coloring book (she likes coloring books), but I got her something else instead (just in case she reads this, which I doubt she will).

Now, for lifeupdate:

I finished my exams last Wednesday, with the Modern Physics. I think I did alright, but I am still awaiting my grade for that class. For the others, I did both better and worse than I thought (or was afraid) I would: straight 'B's so far. That's good for EM1, but I was hoping for better in Morphosyntax. German Cultures, eh. I don't care. I could've gotten better, except that I didn't do about a third of the homework. ^_^

Because school's been out, I've been attempting to work more. There's one problem, though: they haven't been paying me or mom regularly since the end of September. Mom finally did get a paycheck the other day, but I haven't seen one for a while. Probably won't until the new year, which is good and bad. On the plus side, I don't think it counts as income for this year, so I won't have to pay taxes on it until next year, and that will also keep me in a lower tax bracket (potentially). Unfortunately, and obviously, I won't have the money.

Steve and I have been spending quite a bit of time together recently. We decided the other day that we both wanted to have the Civ 3 multiplayer expansion (well... and I wanted the game :-p), so we went to Best Buy and got each other the game for Christmas. It's fun; I think I do like it better than Alpha Centauri, though I still like Alpha Centauri, too.

He's off of school for a couple of weeks, so he's working full-time at the bank, and, come March, he's going to be taking online courses and working full-time with a promotion. That'll be good for him in terms of money, but I'm partly afraid that it'll make him much more stressed. And, I think it would probably be pretty easy for me to distract him from his studies, which isn't something I want to do consciously, but could very well end up being the case.

I spent the night at his place last night, and he asked me some questions about our relationship, as usual. Which is good, I suppose, except that I've been thinking about something that bothers me about him and trying to decide whether I'm just being silly, or if I need to take action of some kind. And, no, I'm not ready to discuss it here, yet, either. It bothers me, though, because I don't think he slept well because he was thinking about it, what it might be. And that was not what I wanted to do, but I didn't want to lie to him, either. He claims that he still doesn't find anything that bothers him about me. It's not that I don't believe him, but I do find it incredible that he can't think of anything. I don't think I deserve to be thought of the way he seems to think of me. Anyway.

Amy's back. She came in late at night last Thursday. I went out with my parents and her fiance to get her. She's going to be staying in Colorado, going to Front Range in the spring, and then CU come fall. It's both happy and sad. I'm glad that she'll be here, but I know that one of her big dreams was to go to MIT. Which she did, technically. And she still could do graduate work or postdoc work there, so it's not all over. But, still.

I've finally gotten my laptop to nearly work just right with Linux. (The biggest problem was the video card, which I finally got replaced not too long ago). It makes me happy. I've also been playing with my desktop, grendel. I installed a mail server on it, for fun, and also a jabber server on it, which is an open instant messaging protocol. It's actually pretty cool. I also started an account with the jabber.org server. You could, in theory, reach me through jabber (not email) at emeraldimp (at) jabber (dot) org . I also had to install a dns server on grendel, so that names would resolve properly inside the network at my apartment (this is important for jabber, because I can't point the client at just an IP address; it has to be a FQDN). And, I was having a problem using jabber at all from the windows portion of my laptop, and I finally figured out why: it was the Norton Firewall that was blocking it, even though it wasn't configured to actually do anything. There was also no way (that I found) to tell it to allow the jabber stuff. So, I turned off the firewall. And, since my subscription is expired anyway, I think I'll choose another program. I didn't find any reports of the same problem with McAfee, but my parents have a copy on their computer, so I'll be able to try jabber there, before I make any purchases.

That's about all for now. Best!
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