Vincent Cheung

Vincent Cheung's Blog

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Saturday, September 30, 2006

Sarah and I have switched places

Sarah's gone, but funny thing is, is that nothing's really gonna change. While we met in person in Toronto, I feel that we didn't really become good friends until we were in the reverse positions that we currently find ourselves in. I was in Seattle working at Microsoft, and she was at school in Toronto. In the approximately one year that we have been good friends, we have been in the same city for only half of that (MSR, Google, Winnipeg), and even then, it was chopped up into small chunks.

We're basically Internet friends, regardless of where we are. We talk pretty much every day, but by "talk", I mean instant message, or occasionally e-mail. Plus, we communicate in several other alternative forms such as msn or gtalk status messages, blog posts, blog comments, del link sharing, etc. Of course, we do speak in person as well :p. But, of all my relationships, this one is the most robust to long distance as our forms of communication are well adapted to such situations.

I was checking my instant message chat history the other day, and I have something like over 10 MB for just Sarah! By far the most out of all my friends. Do you know how much text that is??? That is 10 million characters!!! Of course, a lot of that text is our obscenely long MSN names, but still, that's like close to a million words exchanged, almost all of which has happened in the past year.

Yesterday (Thursday) was her going away party. She was concerned about "worlds colliding" in that it was a huge mixed bag of friends - high school friends, egyptian family friends, eng sci friends, grad school friends, and probably others. Quite a number of people showed up (like 40+). I think things went pretty well and people were inter-mingling. The highlight of the night had to be the semi-nude photo of Gaj, Ana, and myself with Sarah (no pics as Sarah hasn't posted them). The security guard got dispatched surprisingly fast...


Here is my analysis of why we are friends: In short, the Princess Principle. The extended version follows.

We're in the lab room together working on a course project late at night (circa Fall 2004). Just the two of us (*imagining Dr. Evil and Mini Me and singing the song*). I had like no intentions on making friends, though I think it was partially because I thought that she was in the clique with Spikes and Brownie, whom I had decided from the start to be (and ended up being) biatches.

So, we're just silently working away in the lab. The project was a competition, so she was in fact, the enemy. She finally cracks and talks to me. She actually seems normal! Then I teach her Matlab (like how to make code that takes an hour to run, run in 10 seconds) and LaTeX (omg, if you're thinking latex, google it), and we're friends.

Fast forward like 8 months. I'm in Seattle. I don't know how we got talking to each other again. After the course ended, we didn't see each other much and only occasionally chatted on MSN or e-mailed, but communication was quite sparse (heavy course load, papers, conferences, workshops, vacations to Egypt, ex, Seattle). Somehow I started reading her blog and we talked about Internet things. She taught me blogs, delicious (though really, we independently discovered this), domain names (though I got her her CIRA USB key), and how to run Matlab on alpha. I taught her google reader, cvs, grad school, and how to love Google (previously she distrusted Google).

Then, I started my blog, well, I already had this blog, just that I didn't use it, and this was basically a complete revamping of the blog to make it about my life. She read my blog, I read hers, we shared del links, and the rest is history.

Oh, when I came back, she had moved into my office, under the guise of Guangji and literally on the other side of my cubicle wall. With her close proximity, we saw each other quite a bit, though not that much b/c I don't go into the office much, or at least, I didn't use to.

As I said earlier though, it's odd that we're friends considering that we have spent relatively little of our communication in person and being in the same city for a very little amount of time.

So why are we friends? I guess I didn't answer that question. It's the Princess Principle. (OMG WTF IS THIS PRINCESS PRINCIPLE????)

Fine, I'll tell you. It's this theory that I have about Sarah's relationships. I had witnessed, and she had complained to me about, the excessive number of random people that approach her. Guys, girls, everyone. Randoms love her. "I love your voice". "You are Egyptian". "Can I buy more of your clothes?". "Do you speak Hebrew?"

I heard many stories of random guys approaching her and they all get kicked into the abyss (ladder theory reference if you didn't get it). I conjectured that we were friends b/c she talked to me first. This is the basis of the Princess Principle (named b/c her online nick is Princess Sarah). The Princess is so elitest that she cannot be bothered with peasants pestering her. The only people she will associate with are those who she hand picks and initiates first contact. Those that force themselves upon her will be executed at a public hanging. Those that ignore her intrigue her (as if they have the nerve to ignore a Princess and not shower her with praise and worship the ground she walks on!)

My theory has been surprisingly accurate and has described an inordinate number of her relationships, both old and new. It's accurate to the point where Sarah has cursed the PP for being so right all the time.

So I still haven't answered the question of why we are friends. We obviously share a similar educational background and have shared academic experiences. I like to consider us as "abnormal" grad students, which means that we're "normal" people. Neither of us allow ourselves to be defined by our studies, as it is only one of our dimensions. When you first meet Sarah, the last thing that you think of is Master's in Electrical Engineering. Other things that I think make us stand out in a grad school setting are that we can both have a normal conversation about non-school subjects, don't have incomprehensible accents, don't smell, dress decently, have a sense of humour, and have common sense. A lot of trust has also been built up and I feel that I can tell her anything and rant to her (online) at any time.

The other part is the flip-side. Our inner geek. Our shared passion for the Internet, particularly in things that have centred around its social aspects: blogs, chat, e-mail, social networking, collaborative things, webcomics, spying, web 2.0, website design. We find ourselves reflecting on the impact of many of these aspects of the Internet on real life. We both have a foot firmly grounded in reality despite being online so much.


Sarah Ali, you will be missed. See you online!

Friday, September 29, 2006

Reminder: Janna owes me

  1. I got you your ring back

  2. I got you re-elected as one of the comp sci undergrad reps (video proof)

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Hard evidence of my Internet problem

The two highest hours are 2 am and 3 am :s
I'm also not up before 10 and even then, just barely :p


So, I go into my Google Personalized Search, which basically keeps track of all your searches when you are logged into Google. I am always logged into Google now b/c of Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Reader, and Blogger, all of which automatically log you into Google. You can tell if you are logged in if your Gmail address is in the top right when you are on Google.com.

I check out the "Trends" in the search history, and see some shocking things...

Take a look at the image at the top of this post. It graphs the number of searches I did on Google during each hour of the day over the past year. I do more searches at 2 am and 3 am than at any other time!!! That is ridiculous. I'm also not very active before 10 am, and even then, not very much.

Ok, a few caveats about this data though. One, I'm not sure if time zones are taken into consideration b/c I did spend like 7 months in the West coast (3 hours behind) time zone (Seattle and California) and like a month in Central (1 hour behind) time zone (Winnipeg) in the past year. Plus, it's searches, so I could be up at 10, I just don't do any Google searches b/c I know where I'm going (e-mail, reader, slashdot, news, weather, chat, etc.)

I Google a lot


On average over this past year, I did almost 30 searches a day!

Notice the dip on Saturday!


This graph is encouraging. It says that I have a life on Saturday!!! AND Friday nights!!! Apparently I have a social life :). I probably shouldn't celebrate too much since I only do like 5 fewer searches on an average Saturday than the other days of the week.

Top searches, top sites that appear in the search result, and top clicks


I love Googling myself, and recently I beat out the minister for the top spot!


These are some interest stats. I love Googling myself and also Mike Perrow. I also love Wikipedia and Google Maps.

Ok, some caveats. I use Firefox. The default search engine is Google. If you just type in say, "stuff on cats" in the address bar and click enter, what happens, is that it searches "stuff on cats" in Google and then automagically clicks on the first link for you (it's like the "I'm Feeling Lucky" button). That is logged as a search query in the Google search history. Many of these spurious searches are because of that, for example, I never Google "facebook", I just type in facebook.com in the address bar, but that's not a valid address, which I think causes a Google search query. However, I just tried it and it didn't happen. Firefox may have changed something, b/c when I look at the last like 30 days, Facebook doesn't appear even though I have used Facebook more in the last 30 days than I ever have (thanks to the news feeds :)). I do (or did) however, go to the sites listed quite a bit. No porn showed up, yippee!!! (No, I did not doctor the results :p)

As with all stats, there is probably some truth hidden somewhere in there, but take it with a grain of salt.


On another note: it's 2 am, and I'm not sleeping yet :s. I did however, wake up at 7:30 today! (But snoozed until 8). I was home at 10 am back with $120 of groceries from Loblaws!!! Most productive I've been in the morning for a long time :) (probably since getting smoothies at Google for breakfast)

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

IAD

My name is Vincent and I have a problem.

I pride myself on not having many of the common addictions. I don't smoke, I don't do drugs, I have no craving for alcohol, I rarely gamble, I don't drink coffee, I barely touch pop, I don't do fast food very often, and I rarely resort to cannibalism. Ok fine, sometimes I have a temporary gaming addiction, but it goes away when I finish (or hide) the game. I don't "crave" it. At least not right now. And yes, I watch TV, but not random TV, specific shows and I just get caught up in the story line. At least I'm limited by the number of episodes :p. Volleyball is not an addiction, it is a love.

I am quite sure however, that I suffer from IAD: Internet addiction disorder.

  1. Tolerance (markedly diminished effect with continued use of the same amount of time on Internet). CHECK

  2. Withdrawal symptoms. CHECK

  3. Internet is often accessed more often or for longer periods of time than was intended. CHECK

  4. There is a persistent desire or unsuccessful efforts to cut down or control Internet use. CHECK

  5. A great deal of time is spent in activities related to Internet use (for example, buying Internet books, trying out new WWW browsers, researching Internet vendors, organizing files of downloaded materials). CHECK (can you say "blog"?)

  6. Frequent talks about the Internet in daily life. CHECK

  7. Important family, social, occupational, or recreational activities are given up or reduced in duration and/or frequency because of Internet use. NO CHECK. YES! I GOT ONE!!!

  8. Internet use is continued despite knowledge of having a persistent or recurrent physical, family, social, occupational, or psychological problem that is likely to have been caused or exacerbated by Internet use (for example, sleep deprivation, marital difficulties, lateness for early morning appointments, neglect of occupational duties, or feelings of abandonment in significant others). SLEEP DEPRIVATION, DOUBLE CHECK

The first step is acknowledging that you have a problem.

Ok, I don't think it's a super serious problem, but it's a problem. Like, I get out. I will gladly leave my computer to go play volleyball, hang out with friends (if I had any here in Toronto), etc. But, if I am at home, you know where I am, and that's right here. Honestly, I probably spend like 12 hours a day online, if not more.

It's a waste of time. Reloading Slashdot, Google Reader, Google News, random browsing, checking e-mail a bazillion times, checking stats. Garbage. All GARBAGE.

Ok, there are some good things about the Internet, like keeping in touch with friends and family and blogging. Blogging is good. I enjoy it, it's therapeutic, and will serve me well in the future when I look back at this.

I feel that I could be spending my valuable time much more wisely doing more productive things. Productive coming in many forms - academically, personally, athletically. This (academic) year, I want to put more focus on personal growth.

Here are some things that I will try to do to reduce my Internt activity. I hope that by writing it down for everyone to see that it'll help me to follow them through. I encourage you to yell and scream at me when you see me online. Please do it.
  1. No Internet in the morning.
    • This is a bad one. I waste a lot of time in the morning on the Internet. Even when I wake up early, I just end up starting my day late b/c I dick around on the Internet. I never used to do it b/c at least back in Winnipeg, I didn't have a computer in my room or a laptop. This one definitely has to stop.

    • E-mail is it. I'm going to cave and say that e-mail is ok. But nothing more than that. 5 min. tops to check if I have any meeting cancellations, etc. Everything else can wait until I get to my cubicle.

    • E-mail in the morning on weekends is ok, but still frowned upon. I should at least do the bathroom things and have breakfast first.

  2. Stop checking e-mail 50 times a day

  3. Stop randomly surfing.
    • I remember a time when I was so busy that I wasn't able to read every story on Slashdot. I will still read my feeds (blogs, comics, del) and read the news, but try to limit it to not much more than this. Activingly looking for new content (eg. digg and del pop) are a no-no.

  4. Stop reloading Facebook to see what's new on the news feed

  5. Stop going online so much at home.
    • I can blog. I can check e-mail, but not constantly. I can chat. Chatting is fine, surfing is not. I should be doing something productive while chatting, like cleaning, filling out forms and applications, doing work, etc.

  6. Shower at 11, in bed by midnight, up at 7
    • As you can tell from the time stamp on this post, this one is going to start tomorrow.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Video Epitome Talk at the University of Windsor


Video Epitome talk - University of Windsor, Sept. 22, 2006


My talk at the University of Windsor was taped and I put it up on Google Video :). Here is the link to my Video Epitome web page (gotta get that pagerank!)

I don't like listening to my own voice. I think it sounds funny. I don't know how you guys put up with it.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Pride & Prejudice


Don't ask why I watched it by myself. Just accept the fact that I did. I would however, watch anything with Keira Knightley in it, next up being Domino, but I would have watched this movie regardless.

I was also feeling pretty sick at the time. I had eaten a MASSIVE pot of pasta right before a couple hours of volleyball and was seriously having indigestion to the point that I wanted to puke and I really needed to just vege and digest. Anyways, I'm getting off topic...

I hadn't read the book since like Grade 12 when we read it in school, so I had forgotten many of the details, but generally knew what was going to happen, although I often only had like a 10 min. foresight (ah, yes, I remember that guy, he's not as he appears to be). I enjoyed the movie. It was one of those "feel good" movies.

The movie understandably sped up the story line, but I thought it did a decent job of translating the book into a reasonably length movie. I probably would have been a bit confused had I not read the book beforehand. The movie made it seem like Liz and Mr. Darcy were so much in love despite not really having spent that much time together, but I guess they did in comparison to say Mr. Collins and Charlotte and other couples that were like semi-arranged. Perhaps it was just the times. Though, I just looked back at this "Pride and Prejudice Summary (Chapters 28-33).doc" file I had on my computer and it became obvious to me that the movie cut out a bunch of stuff...

Another thing is that it's really interesting to revisit the story after such a long time and seeing things in a different perspective, backed with more life experience. I have 1984 sitting on my computer that I've been meaning to watch.

Windsor Recap

Toronto's Union Station


GReunion: Mark, Janna, and Vince


Mark experiencing some Canadian culture


More pictures


Now that I have pictures as evidence, I can post about my trip to Windsor.

As I mentioned already, I took the train. The whole travel experience was quite enjoyable. It started off in Toronto's train station. I don't know why train stations have to be so extravagent and have such high ceilings, but it was a nice feeling. It took me back to a more quaint and innocent time. The whole train experience is so much nicer than the airport. Getting my ticket was a 30 second affair. No security checks. No id checks. Just get on the train and take a seat. Train wasn't too full so I took a window seat and used the aisle seat for my bag. No restrictions on when your seat has to be in its upright position or when I can have the tray table down or when I can use my electronics. I didn't check if I could get it in comfort class, but I know that first class had wireless Internet. More legroom than a plane. I had a comfortable sleep. It was about a 4 hour train each way, a bit longer than my booking said it was supposed to be, but whatever, I was sleeping :p

Had lunch at the university with Janna and Michelle (Janna's rommate). The talk went well. The only hiccup was that my laser pointer ran out of battery like 5 min. into my talk, but I made do. My talk was taped, so that'll be interesting to see if I can get a hold of it. Weird moment of the talk was when one of the guys in the audience took a picture of me. I was like wtf??? He wasn't like part of the student society or anything, I guess my talk was just that impressive :). Funny moment of the talk was when I had a slide that said "Vote for Janna!"

At the end of the talk one of the student society people gave me a free pen (a nice one). After, Janna, Michelle, Jake, and I went to one of the pubs for some dessert and drinks. Then, it came up that Ann Arbor was like 45 min. away... MARK!!! I fire off an e-mail to Mark and leave a message on his voice mail. He calls back. I thought it was going to be a tough sell to get him to come visit us, but coincidentally, he was going to be driving in our direction anyways! He was dropping off Emine at the Detroit airport, which meant that he was like half way to Windsor and without plans.

He meets us at Janna's apartment and we chill there for a bit before going to Casey's for dinner. We drop the car off at my hotel and drop stuff off there, and then start walking the town. Windsor is a sketchy place. All these sketchy looking bars (with people on street corners telling you to go in) and "massage parlours". We walked to the casino. I wanted to do what I usually did in a casino, which is to get rid of all the coins in my wallet, but their slot machines didn't take coins! It was weird. You had to like use tokens, bills, or a card thingy. It was Mark and Janna's first time in a casino, so we looked all around, but we left without dropping any money.

The best was when we overheard this (obviously American) girl say: "My phone says 'Telus', is that a Canadian word?"

We make it back to the hotel and then introduce Mark to the fine Canadian establishment known as Tim Horton's. It was like 11ish and it was bustling. People watching was interesting. There were several couples finishing their evenings at this place. One "couple" was particularly intriguing. There was a mis-match. The guy was totally out of his league. He had a freakin' sweater vest. Then a group of like 4 guys sat in the table next to them. Next thing you know, the girl is like surrounded by these guys chatting her up like crazy. It was pretty funny. Mark takes off to go home after we leave and I go home as I was pretty tired.

Janna and I met up for breakfast at Lumberjack's and then played Gamecube in her apartment until I had to catch the train. The train ride back was uneventful, which is always a good thing while travelling, and that pretty much sums up my trip.

It was really good seeing you guys again! I'm still impressed that Mark managed to meet up with us. That was completely unexpected :). Throughout the whole planning of the trip, it didn't even come up b/c I didn't think that Ann Arbor was that close and that it would be feasible, but it's awesome that it worked out. I think I'm still in California withdrawal :p.

Blogger Beta Peek-a-Boo Comments

Update: There are some issues with this method and using the word verification stuff. Something about security or something. In Firefox, the first time you go to my blog, it would redirect you to the pop-up comments page. In IE, the word verification doesn't work, unless you first open the pop-up comments page. If anyone has a suggestion as to how to make this work, please let me know.


I've done more blog hacking to restore the peek-a-boo (show/hide) comments that I had before. It's similar to how it was done with the old blogger.

The problem with the new blogger is that you cannot access the comments from the main page anymore. What I did was (dynamically) load the pop-up comments window in an iframe and then had that show/hide using Javascript and css. The bonus feature is that you can now comment right from the peek-a-boo comment! IE is a bit wonky and sometimes doesn't like to show the word verification (you can click the "Post a comment" link). IE also partially hides the vertical scrollbar the first time the comments are shown.

One issue right now is that I couldn't get the iframe to resize to the height of the comments. The reason is because I'm loading the comments from an external url.

Here are some code snippets (refer to the instructions for the old blogger as a guide):

css styles. Put this in your style sheet.

.commenthidden {
  display: none;
}

.commentshown {
  display: inline;
}


Peek-a-boo Javascript code. Put this between <head> and </head>.

<script type='text/javascript'>
function togglecomments(postID, commentsURL) {
  var divElt = document.getElementById(postID + "iFrameDiv");
  var showElt = document.getElementById(postID + "TextShow");
  var hideElt = document.getElementById(postID + "TextHide");

  if (divElt.className == "commentshown") {
    divElt.className = "commenthidden";
    showElt.className = "commentshown";
    hideElt.className = "commenthidden";
  } else {
    var iFrameElt = document.getElementById(postID + "iFrame");
    if (iFrameElt.src != commentsURL) {
      if (iFrameElt.contentDocument) {
        iFrameElt.scrolling = 'auto';
        iFrameElt.contentDocument.open();
        iFrameElt.contentDocument.write("<span style='font:small Verdana, Arial, Sans-serif;'>Loading...</span>");
        iFrameElt.contentDocument.close();
      } else if (iFrameElt.contentWindow) {
        iFrameElt.contentWindow.document.open();
        iFrameElt.contentWindow.document.write("<span style='font:small Verdana, Arial, Sans-serif;'>Loading...</span>");
        iFrameElt.contentWindow.document.close();
      }
      iFrameElt.src = commentsURL;
    }
    divElt.className = "commentshown";
    showElt.className = "commenthidden";
    hideElt.className = "commentshown";
  }
}
</script>


iframe code to include the comments. Put this where you want the comments to show up (probably after the labels in <b:includable id='post' var='post'>)

<script language='Javascript'>
  document.write("<div id='<data:post.id/>iFrameDiv' class='commenthidden'><iframe id='<data:post.id/>iFrame' style='width: 100%; height: 775px; border: solid #ddd 1px;' scrolling='yes' frameborder='0'></iframe></div>");
</script>


Hyperlink to do the toggling of the comments. Replace the "# comments" and "Post a comment" link with this code.

<script language='Javascript'>
  document.write(" | <a class='comment-link' href=\"javascript:togglecomments('<data:post.id/>', '<data:post.addCommentUrl/>')\"><span id='<data:post.id/>TextShow' class='commentshown'>Show</span><span id='<data:post.id/>TextHide' class='commenthidden'>Hide</span> <data:post.numComments/> comment" + (<data:post.numComments/> != 1 ? "s" : "") + "</a>");
  document.write(' | <a class="comment-link" href="<data:post.addCommentUrl/>" onclick=\'<data:post.addCommentOnclick/>\'>Post a comment</a>');
</script>
<noscript>
  | <a class='comment-link' expr:href='data:post.addCommentUrl' expr:onclick='data:post.addCommentOnclick'><b:if cond='data:post.numComments == 1'>1 comment<b:else/><data:post.numComments/> <data:top.commentLabelPlural/></b:if></a>
  | <a class='comment-link' expr:href='data:post.addCommentUrl' expr:onclick='data:post.addCommentOnclick'>Post a comment</a>
</noscript>


Use at your own risk!

Friday, September 22, 2006

Please update your feeds

Because of my bug report, the comment feeds issue became a known issue and now it is fixed! Recent comments on the sidebar now work, and there are new feeds for both the posts and the comments.

Please update your feeds.

On another note, I am currently in Janna's apartment in Windsor and Mark is gonna be here in like an hour and a half!!! (from Ann Arbor, Michigan) Super GReunion!!! It's almost GReunion 64!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

GReunion in Windsor!

Janna-Lynn Weber


Thanks to Janna, I'm going to the University of Windsor to give a talk. Hey, free trip, I'll take that. Plus, it'll be the first of, what will hopefully be, many GReunions!

My talk is in 12.5 hours... and I haven't even started making my presentation :p. Plus, I gotta pack, sleep, eat breakfast, travel, and have lunch before the talk. It's ok though, it should only take like half an hour to mod an old presentation and I have given this talk, or variants of it, so many times (close to like 10 times) that I don't really need to prep for it, or at least I hope :).

I'm taking VIA Rail, which is exciting b/c it'll be my first time taking the train in Canada. It's just over 3.5 hours each way. Anyways, if I don't blog tomorrow, then it's either b/c Janna booked me into a shit hotel without free Internet or she took me out onto the town for so much fun that I was so incapacitated that I couldn't blog.

4 different sports this week

5 if you count rollerblading (downhill on Bathurst is way more fun than uphill). 6 if you count beach and indoor volleyball as two separate sports. The others were ultimate, ping pong, and tennis. I don't play tennis, as evidenced by the blister on my hand, but I had fun anyways. Try new things, that's the new motto.

The end of summer volleyball

To me, the end of GSU pick-up volleyball signals the end of summer volleyball and the start of more organized volleyball. I first started going back in like 2004. Tiny gym, like there's no more than a foot and a half between the end of the voleyball court and the wall. Low ceiling. No air conditioning. No fans. It's literally a sauna in the summer. Like just going inside makes me sweat profusely. But, it's really good volleyball and the small gym means you don't have to chase down balls :)

I still remember the first time I went. I had read about it on the webpage and was like, sure, I'll give it a shot since I lived close by. I had low expectations. I get there and there's like only 2 or 3 other people. I warm up with Rod, an old, round, short-ish guy. He's got good ball skills, I am impressed. I later find out that he's a coach of one of the high school teams. Many of the people that go there are like varsity, ex-varsity, coaches, ex-junior national, etc. There are players that hit the ball so hard that it bounces off the floor, the back wall, and then bounces back over the net! It's like some of the highest level volleyball I have ever played. By far the best pick-up volleyball.

Even though I played throughout high school, I'm like the least coached player there (most played club, which we didn't really have in Winnipeg), and often the worst player there (well, not worst in every respect). It's great. It's how you become better.

So ya, today was the last one this summer. It kinda sucked this year (at least Sept, which is when I was here for). People didn't really go. At least not a lot of the regulars. Mostly the young kids. We would often play with less than 6 and I prefer playing 6's indoor so that you can run a proper offence.

Oh well, the GSU league starts up next week and that should be fun. I've put together a fun team this year. We won't win, but we'll have fun. Intramurals start soon as well.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Arrr... thar be treasure me matey!

Doubloons from me's Christmas LA trip


Plundered doubloons from de summer


Me homemade treasure chest!


Me life's trea'shur


Ahoy! I be meanin' ta post this fer a while, and wit' today bein' "Talk Like a Pirate Day", 'twas perfect!

Arrr, I always gets me flatten doubloons in me far away travels 'fer me ta remembers them by. Aye!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The theory holds true

Early courtship with Michele


Jenny liked to come from behind (she's not that short nor am I that tall)


Michele showing off his flirting skills


Nebojsa has this theory. Something about being in your last year of phd attracts women, women that want to marry you. It's like they smell success. It's all kinda shaky and uncertain up until that point b/c they're not sure if you will ever finish or if you will make anything of yourself.

Despite all my efforts to come in between them, Michele and Jenny are engaged! Michele, whom I thought would be like the last person I know to settle down. Shocking how true that theory is. I am truly happy for you guys! Congratulations!!!

First Mike and now you guys... what a crazy summer! I think you two (Jenny and Michele) should be thanking Adam for getting you two love birds together.

Michele had a good gtalk status message today: "Working for us".

I don't have any external pressure for me to really push myself to do work right now. But apparently if I get within a year of graduating, I will get a girl, so I better start working :p

Story time and reflection

Same key as last time.

Show encrypted text

Monday, September 18, 2006

Canadian Idol Season 4 Finale

Me and Emily with Eva Avila. Winner of Canadian Idol Season 4.


Melissa O'Neil. Winner of Canadian Idol Season 3.


I <3 Elena Juatco. Canadian Idol Season 2.


Fellow Winnipegger Rob James. Canadian Idol Season 4 and also from McMaster and James. A little bit of asian glow :p


More pictures


I am not a Canadian Idol fan. I did not go watch the finale of Canadian Idol Season 4. I did not go to the after party. I also didn't stalk the idols nor did I chat and take pictures with them. I did not get kissed on the cheek by Eva, oh wait, I did :)

The rest of this post is encrypted to protect myself and others from repercussions.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Happy 16th Birthday Mi-Mi!

Sweet 16!


Mi-Mi has a licence to drive!


More pictures



Mittens turned 16 today (well, technically yesterday, but perhaps even more technically on the 14th, we're not quite sure, we kinda forgot whether it was the 14th or 15th and there was some debate as to her exact birthday way back when).

Friday, September 15, 2006

Random!

The picture on the top right now randomly rotates through a couple different photos, as before.

Today's new feature is the "Random Post" link at the bottom and/or top of the page, depending on where you are in the blog.

Here's a code snippet.

Put this between <head> and </head> (this loads the post urls into an array):

<b:section class='random' id='random'>
<b:widget id='BlogArchive2' locked='false' title='Blog Archive' type='BlogArchive'>
<b:includable id='main'>
  <script type='text/javascript'>
    var randPostNames = new Array();
  </script>

  <b:include data='data' name='interval'/>
</b:includable>
<b:includable id='interval' var='intervalData'>
  <b:loop values='data:intervalData' var='i'>
    <b:if cond='data:i.data'>
      <b:include data='i.data' name='interval'/>
    </b:if>
    <b:if cond='data:i.posts'>
      <script type='text/javascript'>
        <b:loop values='data:i.posts' var='j'>
          randPostNames.push('<data:j.url/>');
        </b:loop>
      </script>
    </b:if>
  </b:loop>
</b:includable>
</b:widget>
</b:section>


Then put this code any where you want the link to a random post (this randomly samples from the array of posts and creates a link):

<script type='text/javascript'>
  /*<![CDATA[*/
  var randPostIdx = Math.floor(Math.random() * randPostNames.length);
  document.write("<a href='" + randPostNames[randPostIdx] + "'>Random Post</a>");
  /*]]>*/
</script>


The one thing about the random post is that it will link only to one of the latest 50 posts because of how blogger is doing the data tags in the hierarchical archives.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Secrets...

You can try and message me for the key.

Decrypt text using the "E" key

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Reminder: Sarah owes me

Sarah, I taught you Google Reader and because of it, you won a $500 gift basket. You owe me.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Won a shirt!

GO WEST


Never look back!!! www.wtssc.com


I subbed in for a 4's beach volleyball team today. Played with Ron, Rob (the Toronto engineering version), and Ashley. They were short players as the regulars couldn't make it and Ivana is in the UK now.

When I was asked to play, I was told that it was "playoffs", which I assumed meant that we were like gonna play quarter or semi finals or something, but no, it was the entire playoffs. Quarter, semi, and finals! First game we won by default b/c the other team didn't show (it was cold and windy). Semi's we won pretty easily, ditto with the finals. I was pretty disappointed in the competition though, it wasn't much of a challenge. It was best of 3 to 15, but I don't think any team got more than 10 points in a game.

The beach was pretty bad. Like the worst conditions I've ever played. The beach was really narrow. The water was so close that balls would roll into the lake. The sand was rough and had lots of rocks. And I don't mean pebbles, I mean like rocks bigger than toonies. It was also cold and really windy. Plus, we were playing the finals pretty late and it was dark out, fortunately, the lights from the boardwalk were sufficient to light up the court but were kinda blinding. It made for an interesting game (where's the ball??? where's the ball???).

I love that I won a shirt while only coming for the playoffs and didn't have to pay the league fees :). Whatever, I was there when it really counted :)

We went to the nearby restaurant (right beside the boardwalk), for food and beer after the game. Called Ivana to tell her the news. Ashley only had a minute on her calling card, which wasn't quite long enough for her to cry, though it was close.
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