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28 August 2006

Term 2071 Schedule

I know that everyone is dying to hear about band camp and the orientation period, but first it's time to present my schedule, as I've done in past semesters, so here it is:

Class Titles and Credit Values

CHEM 0760 Honors General Chemistry for Engineers 1 4
ENGR 0081 Freshman Engineering Seminar 1 0
ENGR 0711 Honors Engineering Analysis & Computing 3
MATH 0235 Honors 1-Variable Calculus4
MUSIC 0630 Marching Band 1
PHYS 0174 Basic Physics for Science & Engineering 1 3
PSY 0010 Introduction to Psychology 3


09:00-09:50 CHEM 0760 lecture
10:00-10:50 MATH 0235 lecture
13:00-13:50 PSY 0010 lecture
15:00-15:50 PHYS 0174 lecture
16:00-17:50 ENGR 0711 lecture
18:00-20:00 MUSIC 0630

10:00-10:50 MATH 0235 recitation (computing)
18:00-20:00 MUSIC 0630

09:00-09:50 CHEM 0760 lecture
10:00-10:50 MATH 0235 lecture
13:00-13:50 PSY 0010 lecture
14:00-14:50 PHYS 0174 recitation (computing)
15:00-15:50 PHYS 0174 lecture
16:00-17:50 ENGR 0711 lecture

09:00-09:50 CHEM 0760 recitation
10:00-10:50 MATH 0235 recitation
13:00-13:50 ENGR 0081 lecture
15:00-15:50 ENGR 0081 recitation
18:00-20:00 MUSIC 0630

09:00-09:50 CHEM 0760 lecture
10:00-10:50 MATH 0235 lecture
13:00-13:50 PSY 0010 lecture
14:00-14:50 PHYS 0174 recitation
15:00-15:50 PHYS 0174 lecture
18:00-20:00 MUSIC 0630

Classes begin 28 August 2006; final exams are 11-16 December 2006.

No classes 04 September for Labor Day, or 22-26 November for Thanksgiving Recess.


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16 August 2006


Yes, indeed. For those of you who haven't already heard, as of this past Thursday, 10 August, I am a licensed driver. And so is my girlfriend. Also as of Thursday. No, we didn't go together. No, we didn't "conveniently" schedule our appointments back-to-back. It all happened through multiple twists of fate, some of them totally ridiculous.

Back on 24 July, I scheduled my test for 13:15 on 03 August in Meadville, because Erie, as always, was booked weeks out, straight through 17 August, the day I leave for college. On 30 July, my girlfriend proposed a little deal: we wouldn't tell each other when our appointments were. Whoever got their license first would drive both into dinner, the other would pay. So I agreed to this.

I didn't know she hadn't already scheduled her appointment. So on 31 July, she happened to be with me at the computer, and she asked me to log in for her and see what appointments were available. Except she had an extra impetus: her permit was set to expire on 10 August. So Meadville was booked through 11 August. That wouldn't work for her. Erie was booked through 22 August, except for one lone appointment on 09 August at 09:15, left to her by the grace of someone else's cancellation. She resigned herself to the fact that I would know the time of her appointment, and told me to sign her up for it.

So my appointment was for 13:15 on 03 August, and we got there around 12:55. The examiner was talking to some people in a red car. They said they had scheduled a 12:30 appointment. The examiner had no such paperwork and told them to schedule another appointment and come back later. The kid's father looked more angry than the kid himself as they left the Driver's License Center.

Then the examiner took her 13:00 appointment out. By this time it was nearly 13:20. And running behind schedule isn't something that government employees like doing. The girl parallel parked well, so she continued to the stop sign before the road with her right turn signal on. Then she opened the car door, looked out, put her left turn signal on, and came right back into the Driver's License Center. Failure.

She had crossed the stop bar, which legally speaking, is just like running right through the intersection without stopping. Now it was my turn, and it was almost 13:25. The examiner said she had no paperwork on me, either, so she asked for my permit and went inside to check, and sure enough, the other guy had it in his pile. So on with the test.

"May I see the vehicle's insurance, registration, and the license for your licensed driver?"

I handed them to her.

"Okay, but I also need to see your permit."

"Um, you have it, ma'am."

"Oh. (pause) Well, you can tell what kind of a day I've been having."

Great, just what I was hoping for! I'll spare you any further details, but the test didn't go very well. Now, I'm not trying to make excuses, because I did deserve to fail the test. But I don't think the examiner's having had a bad day helped much. I'm thinking it was mostly psychological, because I don't think I have ever performed so poorly in the car as I did that day.

And conveniently enough, after two relatively quick failures, the examiner was within minutes of being back on schedule.

We rushed home and scheduled another appointment for 10 August at 11:45 in Mercer, because there were no graceful cancellations in Erie or Meadville that would let me get in before I left for college. It almost makes me wish I lived in a less populous county. But, my father is familiar with Mercer, so we went down on 06 August to get me familiarized with the streets and to practice parking in the actual slot I'd have to get into. I didn't do too badly.

Meanwhile, my girlfriend had the opportunity to win. I was panicking, knowing that I'm going to need every last cent I have for college expenses, and that every last cent I had (except for a big jar of unsorted coins) was safely deposited in the bank, from which it would be harder for me to justify a withdrawal. Oh, well. Maybe she'd win, but we wouldn't be able to go to dinner before I left, so I'd owe her over Winter Recess.

Right at 09:15 on 09 August, I happened to be waking up, so I said a quick prayer for my girlfriend (because I was actually rooting for her, despite possible financial consequences on my end). Later that day, I got a call that after going all the way into Erie, she couldn't take her test because her mother hadn't signed an important paper. But, due to the continued grace of people who cancel, she got another appointment for 15:00 on 10 August. Apparently she's more "graceful" than I am. Why is she the lucky one?

She told me what went on, and I really didn't want to tell her that my new appointment was a little over three hours before hers, but she insisted that I tell her because she told me when hers was. So what was the point of not telling each other the times in the first place? Anyway, I now had another chance to win.

My father drove me most of the way to Mercer, and I did the last leg, because driving that far right before a driver's test is never a good idea. I caught myself getting nervous again, but this time it was early enough that I could do something about it. I did all the necessary paperwork again, but this time I had to sign a sheet that listed everyone who was taking a test that day. And I saw, in two highlighted columns marked "P" and "F", all of the marks were in the "P" column except the second one. So this guy had only failed one person today, and that was hours ago. Yay!

Once we started the test, I wasn't very sure of how I did on my parallel parking. I used all three back-ups, and when I had finished, I looked in my mirror, and I couldn't see the yellow line from underneath the car. I even muttered, "Probably not," under my breath.

But the guy actually got out and walked around the car. He came back with good news.

"You're tires are just inside the line. If I were downtown, I'd try to do a better job, but that's passable for here."

He was very matter-of-fact, but a bit more lenient than the lady I'd gotten in Meadville a week prior. But not in a bad way. I think that knowing that about my examiner gave me more confidence than butterflies, and I did well. I even got lucky and saw a partially hidden stop sign because a police officer had pulled someone over, and the flashing lights drew my attention in the direction of the sign.

We came back, and that was that. The most stressful part was waiting afterwards for 15 minutes in Room A (the paperwork room) before being seen, only to be told to take my signed permit to Room B (the photo license room), where I had to wait another 10 minutes or so.

But at 12:23, I was handed a little piece of plastic with my name and picture on it. The picture even looked good on the first take. So I don't have to look at something hideous every time I pull out my wallet between now and January 2010.

I called my girlfriend and told her I won, but I tried my hardest not to rub it in. I also wished her good luck on her test. And she passed. As I've already told you.

So now I am officially a licensed driver... not that I'll be able to use that privilege much while I'm at college. Oh, well. A free bus pass is just as fun.


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09 August 2006


Only nine or ten cans. It's the last thing that's left from my graduation party. And don't get me all worked up about how it's called pop. Yes, I know that "pop" is the more popular terminology throughout western Pennsylvania, western New York, and all of Ohio (proof). Don't call me names just because in this case, I'm siding with the preferences of California, St. Louis, and New England. At least I'm not calling it a "Coke" like most of the South. Because most of what's left is actually Pepsi.

I probably actually call carbonated beverages "pop" more often in conversation, but when I'm writing in a semi-formal tone for a blog such as this, I feel that "soda" is more civilized. Feel free to disagree, just as long as you do it silently, without any words, and on your own time.

But the fact that soda is all that's left also means that I have no thank you notes left. I've handwritten and sent all 80 of them. And people thought my little "averaging five a day" plan wouldn't work. Ha!

I was able to do seven ahead of time because people sent me stuff well before my actual party on 1 July. Then, once I got sick on 19 July, and realized that I had better get them done, I just tackled the list in the order I opened the cards. Once I had 30 (one sheet of address labels), I sent them out. And the last ones went out Tuesday afternoon. Yay!

So now I can focus on more important things, like actually getting ready for college. Packing. Eek!


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07 August 2006


First of all, before I start, let me extend warm thanks to the 15 people who visited Randomness on Tuesday for Visit Randomness Day. And let me withdraw all thanks from those who intentionally boycotted my site on the same day. I love you, too.

Now, when I do errands around town I typically ride my bike. And if I have something to take with me, I get a plastic grocery bag, put the things in, and hang it from the handlebars. So I did just that this morning, as I had to go to my high school for something regarding a scholarship. I put the appropriate paperwork in the plastic bag, and lo and behold, there was a grape already in the bag!

Apparently, when my mom last bought grapes (which must have been fairly recently), one grape detached itself from the bunch in transit from the grocery store to our house. And so my mom put away the bunch of grapes, didn't notice the lone grape escapee, and put the bag in the bag pile with the rest of them.

Needless to say, I grabbed a different bag.


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01 August 2006

Further Randomness

So I'm writing about practically nothing at all, just because I told everyone I'd write today and I'm trying to make it worth everyone's effort to show up to this site.

My cousin is boycotting my site today. So that's horrible. In fact, she was just writing for her own blog right now! So maybe tomorrow should be Boycot Laurel's Blog Day. Just kidding. I'd never do anything like that to my cousin.

Although something that I just discovered that bothered me was that after going since 25 July 2005 without having a day with 0 hits, that's just what happened on 17 July 2006. So a 356-day streak got ruined; almost a year. Oh, well.

My little brother absolutely hates that Ford commercial with Taylor Hicks. He finds the "Possibilities" song so annoying he turns off the television every time it comes on, and he groans loudly if he accidentally turns it back on before the commercial is over. Him hating the annoying commercial is more annoying than the commercial itself!

He was so glad at the end of July because I read the fine print on the commercial that said "Take new retail delivery from dealer stock by 7/31/06." That would mean that starting today, they'd have no reason to air it any longer.

Wrong. Apparently car companies like advertising some of their sales for a few days after they're done to see if they can sucker some extra people into buying without telling them the deal is off. Those darn salesmen!

This is probably my last post of the day, because I've got to go home soon, and I've practically been online all day. So I won't be able to get online there because it wouldn't make sense. Whatever.

Visit Randomness Day Update: 13 down, 40 to go... and 2 hours, 9 minutes to do it. Wow, this totally didn't work. Not that I was expecting anything stellar. Thanks anyway to the people who did visit; not Laurel!


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About Camp

Now, just to shut Andrea up (just teasing, Andrea), I'll attempt to write about camp, which in case you didn't know, was 9-14 July.

Camp was cool. What else can I say? I mean, it's music camp! It's only the greatest place on earth! And it was even better when the announcement at left was read to us Sunday evening. No more buffet! Well, at least except for breakfast, but that's too early in the morning for anyone to care. But this is what happens when the new resident director of the camp is a former music camper. He cares about his people.

So now that I don't have a buffet to rant about this year, I'll have to come up with something else. Hmmm...this is hard!

Our musical this year had a lower tenor part than last year, but I think we got used to the high stuff when we shouldn't have. From my first year at camp in 2000, we've been singing songs arranged by Dennis and Nan Allen, and in 2004, when we did the "Christmas in July" theme, our part was somewhat higher than usual. Then in 2005, we sang an "X-treme" Bradley Knight arrangement...and that was awesome! But going back to an ordinary Allen arrangement was a bit disappointing. Although, actually, it was still wonderfully fun.

My best friend from camp started the week by complaining to Jayne, the choir director, that there was nothing higher than an E in our part. But that was just not the case. Neither he nor I looked at the last song when we were skimming through the songbook, so we missed the few Fs and Gs that were there. And it was fun singing them at the very end!

Band with Mr. Cramer was fun, too. Like usual, I played Taps on Wednesday evening. And ducking from his "deadly accurate" commemorative pencil tosses made up for not playing "Day by Day" from Godspell. Because my school put on that production the following weekend...and it was wonderful. They actually sang with harmony for the first time in, like, ever!

But enough about the high school's eccentric theater department. The concert was good, and my solo (duet) went very well, especially after Jayne gave me some pointers for getting me "in the mood." On top of that, in order to relax myself, I thought of the 76-beat-per-minute strolling tempo as just a 38-beat-per-minute relaxing tempo subdivided. And we kept having trouble keeping it in tune all week, but the Lord must've worked through us, because it was perfect for the concert. Yay!

That's about all I can think about right now; I'm getting a little tired writing about camp. Besides, I have to be at the high school band room in half and hour to talk to the kids about the next fundraising opportunity...because Mr. Music Booster President (a.k.a. "Dad") has to work late tonight.

Visit Randomness Day Update: 8 down, 45 to go... and 6 hours, 28 minutes to do it. I'm starting to think we'll fall terribly short...

Photo Credit: Tiffany Emerick


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Yay! Today, as defined by my 28 July proclamation, is Visit Randomness Day! So a big thank you goes to the 3 people who have visited my site thusfar today, one of whom was me. Haha. We're well on our way to beating 53!

Anywho, this is my first post of the day...and of the month. I intend to keep blogging throughout a good portion of the day so that you might be enticed to keep coming back. And it will be totally random. Which is appropriate because this blog is, after all, called Randomness.

So happy August to everybody! We're celebrating the eighth annual Cousin Club Fun Week this week. It's a week when all of my out-of-town cousins come up to Girard and spend the week at my grandmother's house so that they can hang out with all of the in-town cousins. And we do all sorts of activities. Today we're going to the movies because it's so dang hot.

And that's about it; it's time for lunch now, so I've gotta get upstairs or there will be nothing left! More posts to come!

3 down, 50 to go... and 11 hours, 8 minutes left!


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