Entries for November, 2004

"I guess if it weren't for luck, I'd win them all."

Yush got to watch me as I made verbal predictions of hands off the flop ... and got to watch me as I lost both times. One time I had AA (one was clubs) with the flop of 743 ( all clubs ). Someone goes all-in, I say "man he's got jacks" and I call. As I see a jack on the turn I'm in anguish ... and then the cards are flipped over and I see I have lost.

I accurately predicted another hand when I had 97 with the flop of A97. Guy goes all-in and I call A9 and I call (totally pot committed, getting more than 4:1 to call) .. and he has it.

If you don't believe me doing this, ask Yush. He was listening/watching me as I was playing. Haha.

Earlier today, I was up to about $80 in chips at this one table and I butted heads with the other guy who had $84. He raises minimum preflop and I'm in the BB so I call with Q3. Flop comes Q63. A bit of a reraising war and then he goes all-in. Now, pot odds do not justify this call, but I would of given my life he had AA. I quickly run the hand calculations if he has an overpair against my weak two pair and see I'm a 3:1 favorite. So I call.. and guess what comes up the river? A nice ace. He catches a river set and instead of me having about $160, I have nothing.

I'm getting scary good at reading people now. Too bad the cards are just dicking me over.

Posted by roy on November 1, 2004 at 08:22 AM in Poker | 2 Comments

I finally saw South Park Episode 808. It becomes evident as the show goes on that Matt and Trey are absolute comedic geniuses.

Episode 808 plays on the recent phenomena where voting has somehow become expected out of all of us (not to say that this is wrong). In typical South Park fashion, the whole situation is a parody of real life.

In the episode, South Park Elementary has to choose between two new school mascots ... the two choices are "Giant Douche" and "Turd Sandwich." Of course, P. Diddy makes an appearance promoting his "Vote or Die" campaign which is (literally) either you choose to vote or P. Diddy and his posse shoot you down.

The highlight of the whole episode:

Kyle: Look, it may not seem important now, but your vote really counts and we all have to do our part.
Stan: (sighs) OK. (Stan marks down his vote)
Kyle: Whoa, wait, what are you doing?
Stan: I'm voting.
Kyle: You wrote down 'Turd Sandwich."
Stan: I know.
Kyle: Dude, you're supposed to vote for Giant Douche
Stan: I thought I was supposed to make my own decision!
Kyle: Well yeah, but not if your decision is for Turd Sandwich! What the hell is wrong with you?
Stan: Wait, you didn't want me to vote! You wanted me to vote for YOUR guy!
Kyle: Well I just figured you'd vote for MY guy!

The amusing thing here is the obvious fact that Matt and Trey are pointing out: A lot of the so-called non-partisan groups promoting "voter registration" (Rock the Vote, etc.) are all slanted to the left. I've always felt when people are trying to pressure me to vote that they're trying to get me to jump on the "Bush is Evil" bandwagon ... as if just because I haven't shown an active interest to voting that I would be stupid enough to blindly give my support to someone whom the media seems to be behind... I've had a few situations where I've mentioned that I'm a conservative and the issue about me voting was dropped. I kid you not.

The election does simply boil down to whether you want to vote for a Giant Douche or a Turd Sandwich. South Park: I love it.

Posted by roy on November 1, 2004 at 09:22 AM in Ramblings | 4 Comments

Gosh all this electioneering is making my political libido get EXCITED (just kidding).

Random thoughts regarding Bush:

The President has direct influence over regulatory policy and foreign policy. Social policies (such as gay marriage rights, stem cell research) are not directly under his control. Those types of things are better influenced through the legislative branch (although the President *can* veto any laws that he wouldn't find conducive to his own beliefs). This is even if someone like me strongly does not agree with Bush's social stances (gay marriage rights / stem cells / abortion), I still think he's the right choice. Those issues are reaching a boiling point and eventually the US populace will force Congress to pass laws that we feel are right. This is why I find it very distressing that people vote for Bush based on his religious background or because his social stances don't match yours (or what you know is "right"). It's like buying a car based on its color rather than its pratical value to you ... you're looking at the wrong things.

Although the economy talk has died down a lot in recent weeks, the President doesn't really have direct influence over the economy; this is why Bush can not really be to blame for the economy nor can he really be attributed for its recovery. The tax cuts were more of an ideological rather than a realistic solution to our sliding economy. Bush did not put the economy in the shitter (we can really blame the overheating during the '90s for our early 2000 slide), nor is Bush to be credited for "turning things around." Presidential policies can definitely amplify any effects, but the economy operates on naturally-occuring business cycles. With that said, the tax cuts were a good idea. A lot of times politicians feel that extra tax money is a carte blanche to create new organizations (debunked myth #1: Republicans of today are not "small-government;" the federal government actually has grown during Republican administrations (Reagan/Bush Sr./Bush Jr.)... Bush's argument was that the surplus should be returned to the American citizens. To those who think that the tax cuts were unfairly distributed to the 'rich,' remember that the majority of taxes are being paid by the rich, so if a refund is issued, obviously the rich will get more back.

The economy is actually on the rebound, as recent reports show consumer spending is going up. Manufacturing output is usually a good indication of economic health, and the recent report (released only a few days ago) show an increase in manufacturing. Recovery is happening right now. But Kerry doesn't want you to know that ... he would love to continue to pound the message away that the economy has suffered under Bush.

Of course, this isn't to say that Bush's economics has been particularly sound. Although one can argue that 9/11 forced the government to grow and spend more money, there really is no excuse for marking up a huge deficit ala Reaganomics. I would have liked to see better initiatives to help cut federal spending or to overhaul existing bureacracies (like the overhaul of the IRS which never happened!).

There is also a legitimate fear that American protectionism (Clinton is just as guilty of this) of traditional sectors like steel and airline is really not beneficial to the American economy. Whoever comes in next must really embrace the free-market mentality. Clinton and Gore really made a good step forward by signing NAFTA, but we've regressed under Bush towards a more protectionist view. Bad bad bad!

But I have to say I love Bush's attitude towards international law and international politics. The International Criminal Court is a bad idea that we should never even consider unless the whole system is revamped to prevent abuse. The UN is a joke and should be put to sleep right next to the League of nations. The UN's only value is a humanitarian one now ... remember that its creation was to prevent the US and the Soviets from creating a nuclear winter by giving a place to communicate with each other. The only threat of nuclear winter comes from rogue nations now, and the UN is not going to solve any of those problems.

Side note: Whether you view the UN as a failure or not depends on how you view the way they've handled their international affairs. I'm just going to sum it up by saying "Rwanda" and leave it at that. Remember that the whole Bosnia/Kosovo situation was solved mainly with NATO intervention, NOT UN intervention. The UN simply does not have the backbone or the authority to execute military action ...

With that said, if we are to usher in a better era for the world, the US is going to have to embrace its hegemony and realize that we're going to have give up some of our power in order to allow for better international organizations (a second coming of a UN, for example). However, that will never happen while no country can contest US's status as a hyperpower. I hope once the EU consolidates its integration as a singular political entity and once the Chinese get their shit together the three worldpowers can get together and figure out how to create a blanket world organization that actually has backbone.

The US has been rather heavy-handed in its international dealings, which I think is more of a Republican kneejerk response of the passivity during the Clinton era more than anything. Remember that Gore would be a continuation of Clinton's policies, and most of the US did not vote to continue Clinton's policies. I remember at the time completely detesting Clinton and his policies (or lack thereof) and hoping for someone of strong character to come into office and set a steer a course with clear goals in foreign policy. If you followed my journal during the 2000 elections, I supported John McCain during the Republican primaries because of this belief. I would have never thought Bush would come to symbolize what I wanted in a leader.

But this does not excuse the absence of American participation in the Kyoto protocols. The US has given the world no reason to love us, and it did bite us in the ass many times.

For those of you who have read my Iraq ramblings plenty of time, I apologize for rehasing this. But I think I finally organized my thoughts into one coherent message which I hope will make people understand why I believe Iraq was so vitally important to American interests.

First let's establish a few underlying facts:

  1. The Saudis are not our allies. They are in fact probably going to become the biggest problem in the Middle East over the next decade. The Iranians (regardless of what Bush has said) are not our enemies. There is a burgeoning young population in Iran who are taking a step closer to democracy everyday. It's exciting.
  2. Following the end of the Gulf War, Bush Sr. could not go in and remove Saddam at the behest of our Arab allies during the war. Had we gone in and removed Saddam then, we would not be in the mess we were in today. Ah, one of the downsides of building coalitions... but the important lesson to take out of here was that the US decided on a policy of containment.
  3. I personally do not believe containment is sound policy. Containment is simply deferring the costs of a conflict to future generations. Cuba has not improved under the Castro containment ... then again one can make a counterpoint that illicit mistakes like Vietnam are a clear example of when people who thought containment was a bad idea got power and ... well screwed things up pretty badly.
  4. Because of the fact that the US is the world hyperpower, the US was left with the burden of containing Saddam. The US and the Brits were actively monitoring no-fly zones throughout Iraq while maintaining expensive troops throughout the Middle East.
  5. Given our commitment to staying in the Middle East, we had no "get out of jail free" card. We HAD to stay there. As I personally believe, containment is not a long-term viable solution. Putting 2 +2 together, we have a situation where the US was commited to containing a repressive regime while expending valuable resources not solving a problem.
  6. During the Clinton era, Iraq was becoming quite troublesome. There were always stories of attacks against planes in the no-fly zone ... and do you remember how the US responded? Yes, tomahawk missiles.
  7. If you remember, the Tomahawk missile strategy accomplished nothing. In fact, remote bombing is what got us in trouble with the Chinese in the first place. Tomahawk strikes cost us money without doing a damn thing.
  8. Prior to leaving office, Clinton signed the Iraq Liberation Act. This marked the first shift in US policy towards Iraq. The ILA basically said the US would actively support the toppling of Saddam's regime. No longer would we simply contain Iraq and hope they would implode ... Clinton opened the door for any future President to actively pursue the removal of Saddam. Although Bush got a bit gung-ho about it (I guess he decided that sending in tons of troops was what Clinton meant) ... the initial shift in policy could be found in the Clinton adminstration, NOT in the Bush administration.
  9. Iraq was a problem that had to be solved. Tomahawk missiles were not solving the problem. The UN was certainly not doing a damn thing either ... they had the whole Clinton administration to do something. Only when Bush started beating the war drums did the UN actually start to get really vocal to Saddam.
  10. Now let me say this to those who said we should of "waited:" The UN was never going to authorize action in Iraq. Never. In case you've missed the news, there's been a recent spate of documents which purport that Saddam was using the Food for Oil programme to enrich himself ... by dealing with French, Chinese, German, and Russian companies. That list looks strangely familiar, doesn't it? Given what these countries had to lose by authorizing the overthrow of Saddam, it's no surprise that all of them were willing to use their veto power within the Security Council. There has also recently been accusations that Saddam directly bribed Jacque Chirac to prevent the war... Saddam apparently didn't believe that the US would act without UN approval (which was a mistake since that would be something Clinton would do).
  11. Remember back to 2000... was there doubt in anyone's mind that Saddam had WMDs? We can now look and say there is a clear lack of evidence, but there was none of that leading up to the war. Tommy Franks wrote in his memoir (American Soldier) that all of the top Arab leaders warned him privatey of the WMD threat and went over with the Americans on what the US was doing to neutralize these threats.
  12. But that's not to say that there was ever a link between Al-Qaida and the Baathist regime. At a stretch, we have terrorists training in Iraq, but I don't think the primary focus of this war was simply for the WMD threat. That was the icing on the cake, or the good reason given by Bush to carry the momentum of 9/11 to deal with the Iraq problem.
  13. Given the fact that the UN would never act, the US would be continue to be footing the bill of containing Saddam, and the fact that Saddam had WMD (or so *everybody* believed), it becomes clear that the US had to act. Iraq was not a problem that would solve itself (we saw the Saddam was starting to hand over the reins to his son Uday which would give us another 50+ years of headaches).
  14. No one ever claimed reconstruction would be easy; anyone who believed that is foolish. It took Germany near 30 years to completely get out of the economic hole they left themselves in after WW2. Similarly, it's taken South Korea almost 30 years to even get to a respective standard of living. Japan likewise. All nations take a long time to reconstruct; it's a matter of staying in there with resolve to solve these problems that is important. Kerry does not have such resolve. His poll-taking views (which I'm afraid most Americans have) is that we need to "pass this off" to NATO or UN. Big mistake.

With that said, it's clear Iraq was the proper decision. War is never good and should be avoided, but with the diplomatic roadblocks set up by the UN, Iraq was never a problem that would be solved. We had to go in there and solve it ... or find ourselves entrenched (similar to the Korean problem right now) ... who knows what types of capabilites that Iraqis must of had under Uday Hussein 50 years from now?

I know to most of you I'm a bleeding-heart conservative, but I'm really not. I agree with George Bush and find him an appealing choice for presidency because the most important issue of today is foreign policy. And his foreign policy so far has been (mostly) on the mark. I also think he has the resolve to finish through on Iraq ... I think Kerry, in his efforts to please American voters will try to accelerate troop withdrawal and leave Iraq in a weakened state. We cannot do that. We must commit troops and funds and stay there until the job is completely done. Only then can we hope to reap the rewards of a truly democratic nation ... can anyone doubt the benefits of a democratic Germany, Japan, and S. Korea today?

Posted by roy on November 2, 2004 at 02:58 PM in Ramblings | 13 Comments

If Kerry does concede at 1pm as he has promised, then I think he is a great man for conceding the election in such a gracious manner. No one wants to see the Democratic party go through the tarring they did when Gore decided to play the lawyer game last time around. And if anything, this election sets up a solid Democratic run in 2008 (Rudy for president????)

Big media is so slow. Matt Drudge called the election by the time I had gotten back from poker (2am ish) while CNN and CBS were still debating over Ohio (which was long won for Bush).

Now that Bush has carried both the popular votes and the electoral college votes, there is an air of legitimacy to his presidency now. No more "elected, not selected" rantings from people who believe he 'stole' the 2K elections.

The Republican controlled House and Senate scare me to shit.

I think this year proved the EC has some merits. I've always been a favor of making sure the voice of the minority is heard ... an election without an EC would mean all the attention would swing to huge metropolitan areas ... would the voice of the rest of the nation be heard then? I mean, if anything, we should keep it just for the comic value of watching TV reports and "analysts" add up all the different numbers to try to get to 270. How boring would it be just to count everyone's votes? Where would the strategy be there then? "Well, if Kerry gets 2,000,000 more votes, he'll win!!!!!

I'm quite surprised at the number of people who (joking, I'm sure) claim they want "out of this country" because Bush won. I don't quite understand this. Is your personal dislike of someone so great you want out of our great nation? I mean, I think it's honestly just foolish.

Although it really didn't bother me at first, the more "oh well, the world is going to shit" messages I read, the more angry I start to get. Guys, it was a 4-year presidential election. The world is not going to blow up. The world is not ending. There are plenty of people worldwide who did not want to see Kerry in office (same for Bush). Business in the world will continue. There's no need to become drama kings and drama queens over a friggin' election. The election was not a black-and-white issue where your views were clearly right thus making 50-million people "stupid." Bush is not a "monkey" nor are people being "deceived" by Bush. Grow the fuck up and get some class. There were plenty of people like me who actually have been keeping up with the issues prior to the whole election who decided that although, yes, Bush has some very big flaws, that his positives outweigh the negatives. Sometimes I wonder if the the strong Kerry supporters even realized this ... or whether the media-slanted "hatred of Bush" affected them in such a manner they never got a chance to address the issues at hand.

Thought of the day: HUGE amounts of young people and internet people support Kerry. Why is this? What is it about young people and people who spend a lot of time on the internet (I guess there's a huge overlap there) make them such strong Kerry supporters?

Posted by roy on November 3, 2004 at 09:47 AM in Ramblings | 11 Comments

Let me clarify the previous post where I tell people to "grow up" and "get some class." I was not criticizing those who are pissed about the loss; I understand this and I certainly am not too happy with the political situation here. Griping is great. But...

It hurts me to see people who claim they want to "leave the nation" because of a president. I realize that it's said half in jest, but there is some underlying truth that people believe that would be better off in another country.

Are you really even debating disavowing your allegiance because of a legitimately won election? Are you just going to tuck tail and run because Kerry didn't win? The problem today is that there are far too many "bandwagon" voters (me included). I can guarantee you that all those who are most vocal about Bush winning will do absolutely nothing about it until the next election where they will vote for "the other candidate" (assuming Bush manages to get a successor as the GOP's candidate). They will continue to let the GOP control the House and Senate. People expect one round of voting in a critical election year to fix everything when our system requires more gradual change. The point of the matter is that GOP voters have been coming out year in and year out to give more and more control the GOP year in and year out. As I have said before, the real worry right now should NOT be Bush as President, it should be the increasingly conservative legislative branch (Congress) that should be the worry. The GOP has positioned itself in a way to not only dominate executive and legislative politics, but ALSO the judiciary branch (with up to 3 Justices retiring!), and for those of you who don't like it... you only have yourself to blame.

The GOP has been slowly gaining control in the Congress and Senate for almost a decade and a half now. Vitalizing the support base for one election is not going to do much. If you hate the political climate here, you're going to have to go out and vote in every election and make sure you remain an informed citizen even when it's not an election year.

What a lot of people forget is that the American political system is geared to hear the voices of American voters. And the majority of voters in America felt Bush was the better candidate. I realize that most of America probably made an uninformed decision when voting (this goes for both camps, I've seen idiocy on both sides), but I can guarantee you that every single person who voted in the election thought they were doing the right thing. Nobody wants Iraqis to suffer. Nobody wants the world to go to sh'it. I think it is the general optimism of the American people who got Bush elected.

A study of pollers showed that the economy was not a huge issue when voting. Americans, although we want a better life, are not entirely self-absorbed. We have an optimism that we can make a better world; this sometimes translates into arrogance for the rest of the world, but it's just who we are. Sure, we're a flawed people in believing this, but it's just who we are.

So don't hate people cause they voted Bush. To say they were mindless lackeys who were unduly influenced by TV commercials is an insult to those who voted for him with their heart.

. . .

So some random thoughts regarding the Democrats: Boy they really screwed things up. This election was practically waiting on a silver platter to be picked up ... and guess who is to blame? That's right ... the "youth vote!" I was watching some news channel (I kept flipping between NBC, CNN, and MSBNC) where the report summed it up quite well (I'm paraphrasing): "There was a lot of high expectations within the Kerry camp that the high youth turnout would swing the election... but when election day came, the youth vote didn't show up." (Typical slackers that we are!) Statistically, the same pct of voters showed up in the 2000 elections as the 2004 elections in the 18-26 demographic.

Of course, I also think that Kerry was a horrible choice for President. The Democrats, in general, have been lacking a party message for quite some time. Under Clinton they did have a vision and a goal that they were driving to (a balanced budget, health care for all). What did the Democratic Party stand for in this election? Anybody can tell you what the Republican Party stood for in this election ... but the Democrats simply didn't have a message.

Most of America is not educated. To them, what they want to hear is a consistent message. Bush telling them over and over again that the War on Terror was being won (whether or not it is true) and that Iraq was the right decision ... it gave a consistency to his message. Even if they are wrong, most of America will not recognize this because they don't listen to the liberals.

This is sometimes called the "Echo Chamber" effect. It's basically a limitation of social networks that you're often going to socialize with people of similar thinking: The liberals online were all circle-jerking their views thinking that there was no way anyone would vote for Bush. Come election day they got a nasty surprise, and because of the Echo Chamber effect, the liberals kept blasting away their "rightful" message thinking that the world was clearly agreeing with them. Sure, some of the points were valid, but they were not done in a diplomatic way that would appeal to the common Joe.

So while the liberals were all chatting with each other talking about how Bush was finally going to be out of office, the conservatives were actively going out and sending a message to the common Joe that Bush had a clear message and that your security was better off with him... Kerry was simply just going off criticizing Bush on everything that is going wrong. And nobody likes a Negative Nancy.

So anyways, the Democratic Party is completely screwed. I think this is one of the historical firsts, but the minority leader was unable to secure his own Senate seat ... the Democrats have no clear leaders and they've pretty much lost (in this round anyway) any power within the federal government. So what's up for them in 2008? They need a solid candidate to make a showing ... but who will it be? Barack Obama? (No, sorry .. not going to happen) Hillary Rodham Clinton? (Possibly) Whoever the Democrats pick, they NEED to make sure the party has a clear message and a clear idea to send to the American people. The lesson from this election is that criticisms of an incumbent is not the way to go.

It seems clear to me that Clinton did absolutely nothing for the Democratic party. As popular as he was with the common people, the Democratic party was in the exact shape when he left prior to when he came in: confused. If Clinton were a "great" leader, I think the Democrats would of actually been a reckoning force.

They say the best way to test the worth of a "great" CEO is how the company functions after he leaves. If a company cannot function after a CEO leaves, then he has failed his duty. This is the reason why Jack Welch (GE) is considered one of the greats... not only did he do a great job while the CEO, but he managed to make the transition to Jeffrey Immelt smooth ... and now Immelt is actively managing one of the largest companies in the world with no problem.

Let's see if Bush can secure his legacy.

. . .

Oh yeah, I just cannot resist gloating on just ONE issue: This post sums it up well... "I'm glad bush won, mostly because I so loathe michael moore and it is wonderful to see him fail in his attempt to subvert the political process."

Thank god Michael Moore was put back in his place; I have a feeling he actually hurt more than helped.

Posted by roy on November 4, 2004 at 06:42 AM in Ramblings | 12 Comments

If you give an infinite number of monkeys an infinite number of violins (and other instruments associated with an orchestra) and give them an infinite amount of time, they will eventually play Beethoven's 9th symphony. You are allowed to take either ONE person or ONE electronic device to the event. What do you take and why?

Follow-up question: If you could request the monkeys try to play another song, what song would it be? Please stick to instrumental songs ...

Currently listening to: Cormega - The Saga (Remix)
Posted by roy on November 4, 2004 at 01:30 PM in Music | 8 Comments

Not really a full deconstruction, but a passing thought. I've always been fascinated by slang terms invented by rappers ... it's always so clever.

In any case, I've been listening to a TON of hip-hop lately, but for some reason I was chatting with Nasty Nate about permanently changing my vocabulary to no longer use the word "car" anymore. At the least, I have to use the hip term "ride," but I can extend this even more!

In the catchy hip-hop song "Overnight Celebrity" by Twista (Download), Twista says: "Why don't we play something these hoes'll like // Drive whips I know they'll like..."

Now, it was my initial impression that the reference to "whips" was to a car, but when I initially brought this up to Nasty Nate's attention, he scoffed and said there was probably a more sexual meaning.

So my question to you is: What does Twista mean when he says "whips?" I think it's a reference to back in the day when the primary transportation mode was the horse and buggy and the "whip" would be the main propellant.

If I am indeed correct and "whips" is indeed a reference to your ride, then I will permanently start using it in my vocabulary.

. . .

Since Tupac's death, I haven't really heard a rap song that I thought was "emotional." That is, until I heard Cormega's "The Saga" remix. This is one of the first songs since I've heard since Tupac where I can actually feel the emotion of the rapper through the song, although I'm sure it's the lyrical piano that serves as a backdrop that is more responsible or something. But I've uploaded it so you can download it ...

. . .

For those of you who are using the new beta control panel, you should add caletucker as your friend; I am posting all CP-related posts there.

A new feature was added today that lets you add files via URL (so you can grab existing online files).

Posted by roy on November 5, 2004 at 01:09 PM in Music | 5 Comments

What if, by some twist of fate, you were forced to listen to one song on repeat for the rest of your life? What song would you choose to listen to?

For the sake of this "what if" let's say that when there is no other sound in your room, the song can be clearly heard; you cannot ignore it. However, if you're talking to someone, the music "tones" down to background music.

Posted by roy on November 7, 2004 at 10:22 AM in Music | 14 Comments

It came to my realization yesterday that my butt doesn't fill out my jeans very well.

I went to a dinner party yesterday and while standing around chatting with people, some shady guy named HAN PYUN decided to come by and grab my ass. However, he miscalculated the mass of my butt, so his initial grab was more of a tap ("he tapped my ass"). He then realized that he needed to reach further in to grab my non-existent ass ... which he did. He gave it a nice firm squeeze.

Of course, I felt very violated. But the self-realization that my ass does not fill my jeans trumped the fact that I had been violated.

Perhaps I need to start biking again ... at least then I had a nice firm ass. Now ... it's nothing. NOTHING.

. . .

Here are two more MP3s that you probably won't like since my taste in music is so "whack."

By the way, I really like Greenday's new album. Go check iit out if you liked their other stuff... "Jesus of Suburbia" and "Homecoming" are my fav tracks off that album.

Posted by roy on November 8, 2004 at 08:28 AM in Foolishness, Music | 4 Comments

There's been this weird tendency for my servers to just _crash_. I have SSH connections to my craptop live at all time, and they're always running top... and sometimes the servers will just crash when there's nothing much happening on the server. It's just plain odd. The DB server just died one morning and the last top command I received back was absolutely normal.

Today the audiomatch (as well as the home.tabulas and forums.tabulas) server died for no particular reason for the first time since I got it. It's pretty depressing to not know what was wrong...

Here is a snippet of the trouble ticket ... this is what the technician is writing:

11/8/04 10:18:54 PM
your server has fell into a maintenance prompt requesting a manual fsck which is now being prepared, please standby

11/8/04 10:28:25 PM
your server is running a fsck at this time ,. .. i will monitor its status and report back as it becomes availible ..

11/8/04 11:23:10 PM
The server is still not back online. Investigating.

11/8/04 11:35:23 PM
The server is still not back online. sending to Investigating.

Can we say ... "duh?" Right now I wouldn't be surprised if the hard drive just blew up.

I finally wrapped up Lightbox7 work and passed it off the new owner and got the wire transfer; good thing cause my bank account was precariously close to $0. Now I have a bit more cash, but I'm still walking on the financial edge... it's scary.

I've been busting my ass on the other freelance project; I just wish this thing would get done so I could get paid for it and move on with my own personal projects. So far I'm almost done with the CP; I just got the new design down to HTML/CSS so it's a matter of tying down the CP with the interface now...

It's been a long few weeks. But let's hope it all wraps up soon.

Posted by roy on November 8, 2004 at 10:11 PM in Ramblings, Web Development | 2 Comments
Posted by roy on November 9, 2004 at 05:02 PM in Ramblings | 3 Comments

The theme for tonight was: "Hey let's put our money in with the worst hand and win!"

Tonight was Terrence's Stacy Poker game ... and boy was I hyped. I had played about 7 online SNGs and placed 1st in 6 of them. So naturally I was feeling very good about my chances tonight.

I was a bit late because I was celebrating Eve's birthday at BW3 ... but it was alright; I made it back for my first BB.

The seating at my table (9 handed) was (starting from my left): Joe, Big Red, Alex, Pete, Random Dude, Aaron (who is the big contender for Terrence in their points standings for the tournament of champions), some New Dude, Donald, and then me.

One thing I have to say is that my dominance on the Thursday game has ended over the past few weeks as people have figured out how I play, so I made a firm commitment to make a change in my play. Moonie and Yush were playing off the weaknesses in my game like crazy and I just had to adapt. Today was the testing ground for the new style of play.

Most of the hands at the first table are kind of a blur, but I will mention the few big hands that were really important to me. I basically really played off of weakness and stole a bunch of early pots without investing too heavily with marginal hands (like I used to do).

The first big hand I played was against Donald. I raised in early position with 43dd and he re-raised me. I flat-called after thinking for a while and placing him on high cards.

Flop came J-high and he immediately bet out $15 into a $40 pot. My immediate instinct was to muck the hand, but I stopped and tried to analyze the situation because Donald didn't seem to comfortable with his bet. Now I didn't think Donald would be playing AJ with the strength that he had been playing then, and he certainly would not of reraised preflop with KJ or QJ .. so I was certain he didn't have a J. But did he have a high pocket pair? The play he made did seem indicative of a high pocket pair play, BUT Donald KNOWS I'm an aggressive player and I'm liable to bet out at any pot. So with higher pockets I would of imagined he would of check-raised me. But there was only one way to know... so I reraised him $30. This would of pot-commited him to the hand but it still left me with fold equity if he reraised me all-in.

But he folded ... he later told me he mucked AQ. As a side note, I would of rivered a 3 to win anyways.

I also played a weird hand against Big Red ... I was holding Q4o when the flop came A43. A bunch of people checked around, turn came 9. Now there were three diamonds on board.

I've always loved to see 3 cards of the same suit on the same hand because you can move so many people off of hands with a simple pot-sized bluff. In any case, a round of weak betting came to me... and I thought about what people could have. I decided the two people still in the hand (I think Big Red and New Guy) were probably on draws and if the river wasn't a scare card I could probably take this pot down.

River came an offsuit deuce. Perfect. I couldn't of asked for a better card! New Guy checks, and I check behind him (the pot is pretty big at this point and I'm happy to take it down with 2nd bottom pair ... but then Big Red bets $15. The $15 is a huge overbet compared to the rivercall when I placed him on a draw. The offsuit deuce was not completing any draws, so unless he was slowplaying top pair or something better, I had him beat. I decided to give Big Red a call, and he showed a busted straight. Woo!

Now there is this kid Aaron who is Terrence's nemesis in the Stacy Poker Tour. They are almost neck-to-neck in points, and Terrence really wants the trophy he's going to buy for himself (ha ha!). I had never really played with him in the early rounds, so I studied him carefully. He seemed to be a pretty aggressive player; I saw him making aggressive plays with draws as well as pocket pairs. I knew if I could hit the right board I could induce overbets from him and get paid off.

Such a hand would come ... Aaron raised UTG to $18 (with blinds at $3/$6). Now he's a pretty solid player, so I couldn't see him making this type of play with anything too monstrous ... he had slowplayed big pockets a few times earlier (which paid him off well). The only other time I had seen him make this type of move UTG was with small pockets ... so I knew if scare cards hit I could take the pot down.

Regardless of what I had, I was going to call... and I saw a nice T3 of spades. Whatever ... I can make do with this hand.

Flop came 553. Aaron bet out $20, and I called. Big Red, in what seemed like a loooonnng time, folded. We all thought he had a huge hand, but he had 68. Weird.

In any case, I decided at this point to let a free card hit the turn and then try to figure out whether he had middle pair or overcards. The turn came a 6 (perfect for me!), so I bet out $30.

Now, this is my reasoning with betting out $30... calling it gives great odds to overcards, so I know if he flat-calls it he has overcards. But the pot is big enough where any middle pair doesn't want to risk a free river and will make a stand here (if you had 77 or 88 you would put all your chips in the middle to close the pot). If he went all-in, I would of had to fold. But he flat-calls. I figure that he's got overcards, so I'm pretty happy to see the river.

The river comes a queen. I'm slightly scared that he hit an overcards, so I quickly check. He then bets $60.

Now, sometimes I do feign weakness, but let me tell anybody who's playing: if I check the river, it does NOT mean I'm necessary weak. It simply means I don't want to risk any more chips with a marginal hand ... but if I smell a bluff bet, I will call it down.

Now, the $60 is into a pot that is roughly $100, so to me it seems like a gross overbet. I would imagine that most who hit a queen on the river would value-bet the river (You actually don't know if you're up against a made set or what not!) ... and $60 felt like more of a "get the hell out" bet.

So reluctantly with bottom pair, I call... and he flips over 89o. Terrence was there and he seemed pretty happy that all of Aaron's chips were going to me; I think this might of cemented Terrence's #1 ranking on his poker tour.

I was pretty happy with the call ... and that hand really captured the night for me. I was making all the right plays with marginal hands .... it just felt right.

In any case, I get to the final table, and I have everyone dominated in chips. This isn't the first time this has happened; the past three weeks I've gotten to the final table with the most chips. And of course, every week I seem to fall short.

In the first big dent in my stack, I run up against my nemesis Josh, whom you will remember for catching a 3-outer on the river .... and I really disliked him for that.

In any case, he (in his typical weird manner of play) keeps going all-in with A2. Whatever. Anyways, we eventaully get tanged in a hand. He raises preflop, and I call in the big blind with J9hh. Flop comes 734 (rags). He checks, and I check behind him. Turn comes a 9. Top pair for me ... he moves all-in for $110. I pace around for a while; I'm not entirely happy with my position here. 9 with J kicker is not good; he might be slowplaying a set or overpair. In any case, I decide that I have him beat (I figure he's got overcards) and call. He has 78o. Of course, he rivers a 7 and he wins. I'm annoyed.

Well things are ok later because I do knock him out when he goes all-in with a club draw and my top pair holds up (karma!) ... but I eventually get back into very healthy chip shape.

I kept noticing Terrence raising on my BB. Now, I do respect Terrence enormously, but I feel that people shouldn't just run around stealing my blinds. I will defend my blinds (I defened my blinds against Big Red earlier with 84dd and ended up splitting the pot with him!) ... as I did against Terrence (who had KK) with my 93ss.

In a total misread, I thought he had overcards. So when the flop came J-high with one spade, I decide that I was going to front the J. I bet out $30, and he calls (I think the price to play preflop was $30, but my memory is hazy with specific chip values). The turn comes another spade, giving me a spade draw. I bet $100 this time, and he flat-calls. River comes an ace of spades, thus giving me my runner-runner flush. I go all-in, and after some hemming and hawing, Terrence folds.

The lessons learned here? Don't play overpairs like that ... Terrence realized he had misplayed his KK and realized he should of put me to the test off the flop. But I need to learn that I cannot get implied odds against Terrence! I got lucky that river saved my arse ... or I would of been in big trouble. But the cards make geniuses of us all, I guess.

So I'm cruising along and we get down three-handed with Terrence, Sam and myself. Sam decides to raise UTG (blinds are $10/$20) to $60. I look down and see QQ and I re-raise all-in. Terrence quickly folds after looking at one card (ha ha!) ... and without thinking Sam calls for another $310. Now think about this for a second. What type of hands would you risk your whole tournament in a not-pot-commited-call? One SHOULD answer with these hands: AA, AK, KK, QQ ... and that's it. Heads-up shorthanded, maybe you can extend down to JJ and TT... but that's it. But guess what he flips over?

KQ offsuit. Sam decides to risk everything ... on KQ offsuit. I am a pretty damn big favorite here, but I'm praying I don't see a friggin K.

Flop comes AKx, all spades. And of course, he catches a flush on the turn.

But really ... I'm totally pissed at this call. Maybe if I had seen a coin flip I would of been happy, but to see someone put all their money on the line with such a marginal hand boggles my mind.

Well, after that my chips quickly diminish as I go on tilt and my cards run cold. I miss an opportunity to double up when my cards catch top pair on the river, but I fold to an all-in bet ... I eventually lose when Sam calls my all-in with KJ against my A7. I'm glad to see an ace on the flop, but less happy with the jack on the flop as well. Turn comes a K, and I lose.

It really hurt me a lot to lose today, because it was the perfect chance to play Terrence heads-up in an epic battle ... and also because I had played so well. I played tight, but I made the right moves with the marginal cards to extract an advantage.

I really don't fault myself for any of my plays; perhaps once I lost that big hand I could of composed myself better ... because bad beats do happen and I need to learn to deal with them. But now I know how Phil Hellmuth feels ... you go in with the best hand and you play SO well ... but the few times you risk most of your stack, the person with the lesser stack gets lucky and wins.

Posted by roy on November 10, 2004 at 01:18 AM in Poker | 3 Comments

There is something so amusing in reading Bill Simmons' articles on ESPN regarding the NBA... read his latest take on the Western Conference... the part that really got me laughing out loud was his "predictions" for Houston... I couldn't figure out why he italicized the whole paragraph until I read the whole thing:

I am having trouble playing with the lanky African-American who uses an acronym for a name. I feel like someone is extracting my molar without the use of novacaine. This lanky man with the acronym seems to bristle when I am teamed by two defenders, believing that he is the one who should be drawing such attention. He attempts ill-advised field goals with plenty of time remaining on the shotclock and nobody standing under the basket. And his lackluster efforts on the defensive end have left the bald gentleman guiding our team frustrated beyond recognition.

There has been screaming and conflict on more than one occasion. Even my efforts have been targeted by the bald gentleman with three names, although the rebounding chores have fallen into my hands and I have no assistance. I miss playing with my diminutive friends, Steve Francis and Cuttino Mobley. I am very lonely. I wish I could play for the Lakers.

Oh man, he gets EVERYBODY'S number.

And I am rooting for the Nuggets. You can call me a bandwagon fan or whatever, but I was rooting for them last year; I really think that 'Melo will be a solid contender (possible All-Star) if he can get his personal life together. I love Camby ... even with all the baggage that comes with supporting a character like that ... and now with the addition of K-Mart ... the Nuggets frontcourt is simply amazing. Imagine what will happen if they can get a solid selfless shooting guard ... sick.

. . .

There's a great interview with Phil Ivey on CardPlayer. Another great snippet:

Lots of top players don’t wear sunglasses. I tried to wear sunglasses once at the World Series and misread my hand. I threw them into the garbage can, and they were $1,100 sunglasses.

(Phil’s wife overheard this and said, “So, that’s where those went. I thought you lost them.” “Yeah,” he said. “I lost them in the garbage can.” “Those were nice sunglasses,” she said. “Yeah, so nice that they cost me a $100,000 pot.”)

Posted by roy on November 10, 2004 at 07:50 PM in Sports | 2 Comments

Kate Beckinsale's agent has denied reports that Kate has a clause in her contract stating that a picture of her may not be taken at a greater than 45 degree angle because her boob job rides up her collarbone ... double ouch.

But apparently there's another report saying that Kate's boobs are real.

For the record, I am officially OVER Kate Beckinsale. I have a new love in my life now ... her name is Alizée. You can google her or I'll post some pictures of her later.

. . .

By the way, Terrence has his accounts of Tuesday Night Stacy Poker up. Give it a read and send him a congrats for winning Player of the Year.

. . .

I know I promised you pictures of Alizée, BUT I TRICKED YOU. I HAVE NO PICTURES OF HER! INSTEAD I HAVE PICTURES OF ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I did get this great new t-shirt I'm going to be wearing at poker night tonight; hopefully I will be able to scare the living bejesus out of my opponents!


Posted by roy on November 11, 2004 at 08:07 AM in Foolishness | 10 Comments


I've been listening to Toni Braxton's "Unbreak my Heart," Vanessa Williams' "Save the Best for Last" and some K-Ci and Jojo.

It has put me in a weird mood. And this could be the most useless post ever.

. . .

For the first time ever, I decided to annoy everyone at poker night and start taking a lot of pictures. So instead of a poker story, I offer you The Poker Gallery with pictures of all the usual suspects. I spent a lot of time captioning, so check it out ;D

. . .

By the way, you can now mass-add images to your Tabulas account by uploading to an open-directory webserver ... I've added about 60-70 images tonight effortlessly and quickly. Check it out.

Edit about 30 minutes later (man this post is getting edited pretty heavily): I just ended up adding almost all the images from my Lightbox into here ... so tonight I've added about 150 new images to my Tabulas ... WITH EASE!

Also using the gallery so much made me realize how clunky the UI felt; I think I added a few good shortcuts that should expedite the gallery process. And to those of you who are waiting for some sort of "advanced" gallery editing tool, do not be sad! I've been using a new "mass edit/mass delete" tool to quickly annotate my images. It works OK... hopefully that will be released within the next few days.

Posted by roy on November 11, 2004 at 07:33 PM in Poker | 7 Comments

Wow, today was pretty productive.

The first order of business was tackling the issue of the "Recently Updated Entries" problem. The problem was that basically you do something along the lines of "SELECT (columns) FROM entry WHERE (bunch of security limitations) ORDER BY timestamp DESC". The problem is that Tabulas has about 400,000+ entries and apparently having mySQL do a ORDER by on 400,000 entries wasn't too smart. I realized that in my idiocy I had allowed timestamp to be indexed, so all I had to do was add in a WHERE limitation: WHERE timestamp LIKE '2004-11-13%' to limit the entries down to just the ones today so it doesn't even have to sort through 400,000 entries. See? Fixing Tabulas isn't hard. It just takes a non-retarded moron to do it (and apparently I don't qualify...)

In a momentous (not really) occassion... look at this screenshot:



After floundering around with the new help center and how it's "supposed" to work, I just said "f' it" and just threw something up. Forget trying to build all sorts of weird text-checking functions to auto-replace text... I'll just write all the HTML myself! So YES, the help center is up!

I realize all the new "sites" for 2.0 are all haphazardly thrown around, but they *will* eventually be integrated... when I have time.

In any case, yes ... I finally got the new documentation center up. It will be based all on the new control panel. I think I "fully" documented the tagboard ... how do you like it? Yes, I do plan on doing that level of documentation for ALLLLLLLLLL the features!

I also ordered the first batch of Tabulas business cards (500 satin from 4by6.com). Once I get 2.0 out, I'm going to be pretty (hopefully) serious about getting people to try to pay for the services since I will try to target an older demographic ... let's hope!

. . .

In order to say "thank you" to a few people who I feel deserve free paid accounts, I upgraded ghost tree, rad, and oh_oh_sockhop to paid/beta status. lainie was upgraded to beta status as well (so you don't get caught my the new auto-renewal system ... it ignores beta accounts). NOW I'M FORCING YOU TO STICK WITH A SINKING SHIP MUHAHAHAHA (jk).

See? I'm not a total corporate moneygrubbing asshole ... yet

. . .

I had NO idea that Southpoint Mall was supercrowded at 6pm... it was almost impossible to find parking or to even move around the parking lot cause it was so crowded! I blew some time at the mall, mostly eye-humping expensive Bose products and picking myself up a watch from Fossil (I haven't had a watch since middle school and it's getting annoying to not know what time it is). Note that I cannot STAND wristwatches ... so I bought a pocketwatch. Yeah, retro!

Tomorrow is going to be a fun-packed busy busy day... not really looking forward to it.

. . .

Oh yes, thanks to all people who have donated recently via NeoPages.net (and those who purchased a bunch of Amazon products ... PM5K???) ... your thanks and donations seriously make it all worthwhile :)

Be safe, kids!

. . .


Posted by roy on November 14, 2004 at 12:24 AM in Ramblings, Tabulas | 12 Comments

I just watched Red Shadow: Akakage and it is the oddest movie I've seen in a while. i was expecting a really deep serious Japanese movie, but the movie was intertwined with some comedy and love drama on top of ninjas!

But yeah, I've decided that I wish I had been raised a ninja... and I've decided to try to go to Japan to find a girlfriend cause this movie makes me believe all chicks in Japan are smoking hot.

Posted by roy on November 14, 2004 at 11:00 PM in Foolishness | 11 Comments

The shocking truth about FCC regulation. This bullshit has GOT to stop. The role of the government is expanding far too rapidly for my tastes; whatever happened to regulating intrastate commerce? Why does the govt feel the need to regulate what's on TV?

Posted by roy on November 15, 2004 at 12:46 PM in Ramblings | 1 Comments

Fact 1: I am really busy these days with a lot of commitments.

Fact 2: I spent a lot of tonight working on statistics and graph generation (probably the last 4 hours or so). I finally got around to snapshotting Tabulas statistics (I've run a scheduler to snapshot all relevant statistics to run every night while I've scheduled the graphing utility to automatically update all graph images once a month).

The first results can be viewable at http://home.tabulas.com/statistics.php.

What's interesting are the two graphs generated; one is a graph of Tabulas user registration over time while the other is the growth of users vs. entries vs. images.

Now I may not have learned too much in skewl, but I know this: GRAPHS THAT GO UP ARE GOOD, GOOD, GREAT!!!!!!!!. *cough*

Image usage has certainly slowed over the past few months; this seems pretty normal since I've been regularly lowering the free account image quotas ... but what happens when I release the "mass upload" gallery features on the new CP? We shall see...

But it looks almost as if entry usage is growing at a much faster rate than user registration? I guess that means that Tabulas is locking in members ... always a great sign! I'd be curious to see how "active" paid members are vs. non-paid members and to see what percentage of total costs is actually being paid by paid membership ... etc. etc.

But yeah, those statistics are interesting. So go take a look!

P.S. Again with the age distribution there seems to be a problem; the age limit stops at 35 when it stop at a much higher number. The total numbers at 35 I think are 35+, but I'll fix this later.

. . .

Need a good laugh from an awesome acapella song? Download this MP3 then! It's a seriously funny MP3... just keep listening to it ... warning though, don't play it in a public place because someone MAY think it's "not cool."

My ex-girlfriend thought the song was "cute." I'm not sure what that exactly means.

. . .

In an effort to "persuade" my friends to join Tabulas, I have decided to post slanderous stories regarding them until they join. Then I will continue to slander them.. HAH HAH. You see what you readers have done? You have given me a huge pulpit from which I can be a bully!

In any case, this post will focus on "Peterman." If you don't know who he is, here is a quintissential picture of him:

We can define Peterman by a few notable characteristics:

  • He always likes to eat.
  • He always comes shortchanged to the poker game (IT'S $5, PETERMAN.... COME ON MAN)
  • He always loses to me in poker

Now I don't know what it is about Peterman, but it is very fun to aggravate him; there's something about his reaction that is very soothing. I think that's why Terrence is constantly tormenting him. I also think it's why I play any hand against him; it's great to catch with nothing and watch him blow up. But Peterman is a pretty passive guy; if he blows up the worst he'll do is shout a string of curses (mostly "Damnit" that's his favorite) while he threatens to jump out the window. In fact, I have the perfect screenshot to iillustrate this (this is not made up; Peterman is on the left and Terrence's Peterman quote is on the right):

In any case, I will write of a particular incident a few weeks ago after our poker night. Peterman had been knocked out and was quite bored. Apparently his boredom was so great that he found it necessary to answer his cell phone from a "friend."

Now the amusing thing here is that if it were a quick call and the phone call had masculine traits (short, terse answers, short conversations, etc.) then I would think nothing of it... but...

  • Peterman was talking "softly" into the phone. He claims he was trying not to wake Sech, but I think otherwise. I used to be in a relationship, and I used the exact same voice with my then-girlfriend. I mean it's the type of voice that's accompanied by the words, "I love you too, hunniebunnie." (ugh I just got sick)
  • The conversation lasted a LONG time. I mean this wasn't the typical "Hey you want to go eat? No? Ok. See ya later, G-FUNKDAWG (these are things that manly men say)." Apparently Pete was interested in having a "real" conversation over the phone with his "drunk friend." Whatever. It seemed more like a guy who was trying to turn down a bootycall.

OK I'm done slandering people.

Posted by roy on November 15, 2004 at 10:38 PM in Foolishness, Tabulas | 7 Comments

Warning: I realized after I wrote this that it could be misinterpreted. I am writing this whole thing tongue-in-cheek cause I'm in one of those weird "really hyper" moods. No offense to anybody, and don't take it seriously.

A few things I realized today:

The place to find the WORST driving in the world is at high school when kids are being picked up. The two primary types of drivers are: (1) soccer moms in oversized SUVs or minivans and (2) high school kids. Subgroup (2) can be further divided into: (1) emotionally unstable high school girls and (2) hormonally charged boys.

Now let's make a sweeping generalization here that women cannot drive. This is not to say that all women cannot drive; I have met many women who are great drivers. I have also met women drivers who are the most AGGRESSIVE (good) drivers I've ever met. But as a general whole, women are not as good drivers, both because of their relative lack of hand-motor abilities (my tennis class is a great example of this) and their lack of a natural sense of direction.

The soccer moms are the WORST drivers. They don't understand that in a pick-up circle you CANNOT CUT IN LINE AND JUST GO UP TO THE CURB; they seem to ignore the long line of people waiting and cut in front of people. Furthermore, the pick-up lane is two cars wide (one for parking along the curb, the other for driving past ... but these women seem intent on STOPPING IN THE MOVING LANE. Not only does this make it impossible for cars trying to get OUT, but it stops up traffic all the way back. SMOOTH MOVE. ANd of course, I'm signalling to get OUT so the line can MOVE, but the stupid soccer moms are intent on passing me ... and then stopping right to my immediate left so I can't get out while they look desperately for their kids. Look, we all got places to be. You and your kid can spend another 5 minutes waiting.

So not only do we have women (who cannot drive) in oversized cars that have crappy movement (I know my Ford Taurus is like a turtle when it comes to turning, but these minivans and SUVs are tons worse!) ... but the other side of the coin are a bunch of emotionally unstable high school girls. Honestly, when I see them approaching, I'm not sure what to do. They could be seething with anger that one of their friends didn't share their apples with them at lunch ... or whatever high school girls get pissed about. There they are yapping away on their cell phones or whoever else is in the car, not paying attention to the road...

A side story: my freshman year I was biking from campus back to my dorm (a 10-15 minute walk, a 2 minute bike ride). I'm behind this person walking, and we're both crossing the crosswalk in front of the Bell Tower. As I'm crossing the crosswalk, the truck waiting suddenly LURCHES FORWARD as I've crossed halfway across the crosswalk (the crosswalk spans over a two-lane road). The truck luckily stops about 3 inches (I kid you not, I could feel the engine) in front of me as I stare at the grille. I'm not prone to anger, so I wasn't really pissed, just kind of stupified that someone could be so dumb as to not notice a guy crossing the crosswalk on a YELLOW BIKE in BROAD DAYLIGHT. I look up, half expecting an old granny ... but it's three stupid sorostitutes listening to music really loudly. The one driving was screaming, the two sitting in front had big ass eyes ... stupid sorostitutes almost got me seriously hurt. So if you think my hatred towards women drivers is based on nothing, you're wrong. Time and time again I've had horrible experiences with women behind the wheel. (Note: That's not to say I'm a great driver. But I don't make blindly dumb mistakes like this and almost hit people.)

So between trying to navigate between the inept soccer moms and the emotionally unstable high school girls, I have the last subset of drivers to worry about: the emotionally charged boys. Whether their testosterone is running high from being at the top of their cliques or from asking the hot cheerleader out, these guys will SPEED LIKE CRAZY IN A 25MPH ZONE. I mean, I'm not 35mph... I mean more like 45-55 .... it's ridiculous. And of course, none of the high school kids ever abide with the stop sign, so one basically has to yield to them or risk getting into a serious accident.

Posted by roy on November 16, 2004 at 04:47 PM in Foolishness | 7 Comments

A few days ago, I found out from Terrence that Peterman is a pretty avid Axis and Allies. I was excited to hear this, because I love Axis and Allies.

When I talked to Peterman about Axis and Allies, he mentioned that it was impossible for Axis to win following normal rules.

Oh NO, he DI'ANT.

There is one way to get any guy to do something, and that is to tell him that something is impossible. And Peterman just lay down the gauntlet. I was so eager to prove him wrong ... that I invited him over last night at 1am to settle the score.

But the fool ... he feared me and backed out. But he comes tonight, and I will DESTROY him. I set up the game last night and detailed out the first few turns ...

To up the stakes, we put money on the game. Because Peterman insisted that it was impossible for Axis to win, I wanted him to give me 2:1 odds, but he wouldn't do it, the bastard.

In any case, I eagerly await him ... for he will see the wrath that is ROY!

. . .

I'm glad a lot of you enjoyed the MP3 I posted last time; if you didn't get it yet, scroll down and get it. It's seriously funny (as people have pointed out in the comments).

I've uploaded another track from Cormega... if you liked the previous track, you'll probably like this. Download the MP3 here.

Edit: Update ... after a 12 hour game, Peterman defeated me. NO! NO!!!!!!!!!!!

I had it all ... I took a few gambles to set up positionally advantageous units ... and then it all crumbled when I oversaw a crucial reinforcements of Germany ... left only like 6 units in there with 16 tanks sitting in Eastern Europe. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. Stupid me!

Great game, Peterman. But 12 hours ... what a friggin marathon.

Posted by roy on November 17, 2004 at 02:33 PM in Foolishness | 9 Comments

Much like I overestimated my ability to lead the Axis power to victory last night ... this truck overestimated it's abilities...

. . .

Got a sweetheart to send flowers to? Get 3 dozen for $30. Why did I post this? I have absolutely no clue.

Posted by roy on November 18, 2004 at 05:48 PM in Foolishness | 1 Comments

Saw this on an AIM profile page... summing up how I've been feeling lately.

i may take a holiday in spain
leave my wings behind me
flush my worries down the drain
and fly away to somewhere new...

MP3 Download: Counting Crows - Holiday in Spain

Posted by roy on November 19, 2004 at 12:40 AM in Ramblings | 1 Comments

So we're playing fantasy basketball once again. The autodraft finally went through, and my two-hour long predraft picks seem to have yielded a pretty strong team:

  • Luke Ridnour at the 1
  • Paul Pierce and Maggette at the 2
  • Rashard Lewis, Wally Szczerbiak, Peja Stojakovic, Grant Hill at the 3 (yeah I'm a bit overloaded here)
  • Drew Gooden, Dwight Howard, Tyson Chandler at the 4
  • Dirk Nowitski and Kurt Thomas at the 5

After winning last year's fantasy league on what many people called a "fluke," I'm determined to make a strong showing this year.

I do like my team overall, but there are definitely a few spots where I could use a lot more work.

One of the big requirements for my players this year from a lesson learned hard last year is to pick high percentage shooters. I seriously got shafted last year when my players couldn't hit their shots from the field ... and I almost got into trouble when my players started missing their free throws last year as well.

Looking at my team, you can see that in general they are very good free throw shooters. With the exception of Rashard Lewis (75%), Dwight Howard (43% with about 4 attempts a game), and Kurt Thomas (roughly a 70% shooter), all my other players shoot at least a 80% percent. I have Luke Ridnour shooting at an amazing 95% right now (although I expect that number to level around the high 80s), Grant Hill shooting at 90% (expect to level around 85% ish), and Peja shooting at roughly 90% (which is normal for him). The great thing is that my four high-volume free throw shooters (Pierce, Maggette, Nowitzki, and Peja) shoot at high percentages... hopefully I can take the FT pct category this season.

In terms of FG%, things will be a tough sell. I really wanted a sharp-shooter along the lines of Redd or Ray Allen, but honestly I will be happy if I can break the top 3 in scoring percentages. I don't see too many players who can botch my high percentages (Paul Pierce is the only one I seriously worry about since he tends to take a lot of shots at a pretty low 40-percentile) ... so I'm pretty comfortable there.

Last year I made no effort to draft high-scoring players because I figured playing the points game would be difficult. I really feel I can make a run for at least 2nd or 3rd place (maybe even 1st!) with my team. Of my players, Paul Pierce, Rashard Lewis, Dirk, and Grant Hill are all fully capable of bursting for 30 point outbursts. I feel comfortable with Maggette scoring roughly 20 a game, and Drew Gooden and Kurt Thomas will make solid contributions on a daily basis.

Speaking of 3 pointers, do I have enough 3 point shooters on my team? Again, Rashard, Dirk, Peja and Paul Pierce are capable of draining two treys a night, which will add up in the long run of the season.

My biggest weaknesses will be in rebounds and blocks. Any rotisserie contender needs at least two (or three) double digit averaging rebounders per night. I tried to pick up two solid rebounders (Kurt Thomas and Drew Gooden, both who shoot at a high FG and FT %) while getting help from two youngsters (rolling the dice with Dwight Howard and Tyson Chandler). I'm not feeling very comfortable with my shot blocking, as most of my players are pretty soft on the defensive end.

I'm also missing in the steals category, as my team is not a guard-heavy team. However, I have to be happy that most of my team can average at least a mediocre steal average, so I can stay in the running for steals until mid-season when maybe I can move some of my extra players for an efficient point guard.

I know I will be dying in assists and turnovers this year because I have no solid point guard. Luke Ridnour, although a solid player, is not a team I want to base my offense around. Ideally I could unload one of my forwards for Starbury or Arenas, but I'm not sure how well that will pan out. I want to play the first week and see where my team stands and do all additional tweaking then.

But I feel good. I have a very solid base to work with; great trading talent and good overall statistics.

Posted by roy on November 20, 2004 at 01:09 AM in Sports | 1 Comments


left and right, stuff keeps coming in. i have too much to do... damnit.

Posted by roy on November 21, 2004 at 12:57 AM in Foolishness | 1 Comments

Apparently nobody told me it was National Breast Cancer Awareness Week last week. I just managed to visit MrJoshHerman's Tabulas to find this important fact out. Thanks for telling me, jerkfaces.

But you should really visit his Tabulas. GOOD LAUGH!

I wish I had thought of that...

. . .

I'm writing a dissertation, and it hurts, but I am actually criticizing my usual points of view (fiscal libertarianism) in this paper more than I'm supporting it. Does this mean that it's wrong? No, I don't think so. Then again, I really didn't sleep last night ... so here I write a paper on liberalism and inegalitarian policies (with a socioeconomic slant), while listening to Tupac's "Changes." (Fitting, huh?

. . .

Speaking of 2pac, I really want to see Coach Carter. Looks like a good movie.

. . .


Posted by roy on November 22, 2004 at 06:14 AM in Foolishness | 3 Comments

From John Updike's short story, "A&P" (read it, it's GREAT!): "You never know how girls' minds work (do you really think it's a mind in there or just a little buzz like a bee in a glass jar?)"

. . .

Anytime someone looks through my MP3 or iPod collection, I hear the exact same thing from everybody: "You've got the weirdest, most diverse collection of music." This is true. I can ease in between hardcore rap, classical music, and teenie pop with absolute ease.

In any case, four songs I've been listening to that I find really good:

  • Greenday - Boulevard of Broken Dreams
  • Good Charlotte - I just wanna live
  • The Walkmen - The Rat
  • Jay-Z/Linkin Park - Numb Encore

Go check those songs out. They are all hot stuff. If you like Franz Ferdinand, the Walkmen song has a similar feel to it.

Posted by roy on November 23, 2004 at 05:16 PM in Ramblings, Foolishness, Music | 2 Comments

Disclaimer: I like girls. Please disregard the high quotient levels of homoness in this post

I guess the point of this journal is to give you some insight into my life, but I continue to post foolish shallow topics that do not involve my personal life. I decided the best way for me to create a superficial "bond" with you, my fellow reader, is to provide an inside joke.

You see, I realized that the best way to determine how "good" of a relationship people have is the level of their inside jokes. This is why really good couples and friends are great at games like Pictionary and Taboo; they can just say a few words and immediately a whole story is conjured from the stories...

For example, if I went to Yush or Sung, and I said "Whaaaatttttttt" in a high-pitched voice, it would be a reference to Crispdawg (who has departed us sadly ... he transferred to the College of Arts in San Fran this semester).

In any case, for some reason, I was an anti-Smallville person (and I am currently a very active anti-OC person). I would refuse to watch any show that would demean the story of Superman to teen drama. But my friends TRICKED me into watching an episode and I got hooked.

For whatever reason, we decided it would be really funny to "obsess" over Tom Welling, the star of Smallville. So whenever it's on, we always yelp, "OH GOD IT'S TOM WELLING. HE'S SO HOT" and continue a conversation that should only be held by heterosexual high school girls.

I kid you not, we've had conversations that last for minutes on end arguing about Tom Welling's positive personality traits and how he 'loves' me and not you, etc. etc.

The joke is not limited to just two people, but to everyone who watches Smallville ...

So I guess the homoness is one of our many inside jokes. And now you've been exposed to it all.

Now join with me ...


Posted by roy on November 24, 2004 at 04:11 AM in Foolishness | 10 Comments

Hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving... I just woke up (it's 340am, and I went to bed at 930pm) ... and boy am I craving some turkey. Reaaaallll bad. Wish I was still in Korea so I could go out and get some food ... but alas it's Chapel Hill.

. . .

I sometimes wonder who reads this site. I mean, obviously everyone who has me listed as a "Tabulas" friend reads this site to some degree, but I often figure it's simply through the 'friends page' and not through my actual site. I know from my hit logging that I receive roughly 200 - 250 hits per day, of those which roughly 150 of them are unique ... and I know if I'm logged in, my own hits don't count. So I have roughly 100-150 users visiting my site on any given day. Excluding those who use the RSS feed to read my site ... exactly WHO reads my site?

Are they random viewers who googled some random search? Are they people I barely know? Are they people who know of me through my small social network and like to be voyeurs into my life? Are they people I've met before?

I'm entirely curious ... if you don't mind, if you read this site and don't comment often, please feel free to introduce yourself or something. I won't think it's "weird" that I barely know you and you read my journal; anybody who has been journaling online as long as me know that privacy goes out the door... I actually rather like it when random people read my journal.

. . .

Good news: Finally the Tabulas account management is automated. I had the first subscriber go through the whole system ... and their account was automatically updated. One less thing I have to worry about.

. . .

I found out something I didn't know: If you use a form name with [] in it, for example: <input type="text" name="names[]" /> you can have multiple instances if that form name within the same form... upon posting (in PHP at least) it will return an array with the values (so if you had one form with names[5] and names[6] it would return an array with the two values ...). I had no idea you could do this in HTML ... and you wonder how I've made Tabulas so far...

In other related Tabulas news, there are some aspects of the Tabulas new CP that's completely buggering me; the table layouts are just hideous. AGH

Posted by roy on November 26, 2004 at 01:40 AM in Ramblings | 13 Comments

I just don't know what to make of this Flash movie.

. . .

IMPORTANT! I have *finally* finished the GALLERY portion of the Tabulas CP; I've implemented all UI and functionality changes that I was looking to add to the new CP... PLEASE test out the gallery feature extensively if you're on the beta CP ... you'll notice there is a 'advanced' gallery feature. Some of you have used other programs like Coppermine and Gallery ... your opinions are especially valued ... I need the opinions on the gallery feature from everyone's point of view (beginners, experts, etc.).

Don't be afraid to be mean; if it sucks, let me know. If there are good parts, let me know! If there's something that should be made 'better,' let me KNOW!

I'm really trying to build a powerful gallery tool into Tabulas ... obviously it won't match some high-powered scripts, but I think the functionality that's bundled into the new CP is more than enough for the average Joe.

Currently up at bat: links management; "fun" center (ooh)

Posted by roy on November 26, 2004 at 05:40 PM in Ramblings, Tabulas | 4 Comments

A few days ago, I posted an entry about how hot Tom Welling was. A little while later, Tatsu posted this ... VITRIOL.

Roy, there is no way that Tom loves you more than he loves me. He looks RIGHT AT ME every week. I mean he knows that I DVR Smallville so that I can catch it even when I teach classes (Spiritual or ass kicking) and he loves me for it. You are a faithless bitchman. I am his true obsession and he is mine.


I decided that the best way to deal with this was to post some pictures ... me and Tom have been good buddies for a while now (kinda like Alexander and Hephaestion!) ... Tom, I'm sorry I have to post these pictures and ruin your privacy, but I cannot stand by and let these allegations ruin my life.

This is right before our first kiss

Well here we are just hanging out

We were having a picnic ... look how he has his arms around me lovingly!!! LOVINGLY!!!

This is us chilling out in chem lab. He's superman so he doesn't need eye goggles; I err on the side of caution.

I hope this dispels all rumors and myths regarding me and Tom Welling.

. . .

Because I know this entry will be read heavily, I will also throw in useless Tabulas work-related stuff so that no one is angry that I've posted a "useless" entry ... muhahaha.

One of the hardest parts of the templating engine part of Tabulas (the output; what your webpage displays) is in (1) remembering all the data that has to be called to output your data. If you look at the complexities of simply templating alone ... it's quite complex. Then I also have the fun task of dealing with entry templating as well.

Previously, I had compartamentalized a lot of functions iinstead of having 'super functions' that did everything. This makes sense ... but one of the problems was that I was being very very inefficient with hitting the DB. One of the technical goals for the new Tabulas is to minimize hitting the DB on the output engine ... I would estimate that on any given Tabulas homepage, there were roughly 50-60 SQL queries (a lot of them totally inefficient as well).

So now all functions call from the same set of "memory-cached" functions ... for example, no longer do I lazily just hit the SQL if I need to grab someone's username and what PDS they're on ... now I look in memory to see if that data has already been extracted from the DB; if it's already in memory, I just grab it there.

Totally more efficient. And now that I'm creating that abstraction layer between DB and memory, all the different libraries (commenting, entry, templating) are all using these in-memory caches ...

Posted by roy on November 27, 2004 at 01:48 PM in Foolishness | 20 Comments

I have decided that Blockbuster is evil.

Recently a new trend has swept America, and that trend is known as netflix. Basically it allows you to rent out two DVDs via the mail at a time and hold them as long as you want. Realizing (correctly) that unless Blockbuster did something similar they would lose a lot of $$$, they decided to implement the "Blockbuster Movie Pass."

This movie pass allows me to rent up to 2 DVDs and hold them as long as I want; I can rent two more when I return the other two. It's a great idea and I was enthralled to finally get a pass to rent anything from Blockbuster that I wanted.

Until today.

Today, one might say, was the day I ran into "the wall." I went into Blockbuster, holding the movies "The Terminal" and "Thirteen" in my hands ... and I was eager to trade them in for two fresh DVDs.

So I casually stroll into the Blockbuster ... and I begin going through the new releases. The first two walls ... nothing. Hrm. Ok ... this is a bit worrisome, but perhaps there will be some movies on the last wall that I might find I like.

I go through ... "The Terminal," "Walking Tall", "White Chicks..." ....... and nothing. Fear begins to build up.

It's about this time that I decide to go through the action and drama sections. Nothing there. Thinking that perhaps I missed something in the new releases ... I go through the new releases again. It's about this time I get a call from home.

"Roy, where are you? I thought you were just going to Blockbuster."

"I am, I'm still here." I look at my pocketwatch ... it's been 45 minutes since I left home. Crap.

20 minutes later, I finally decide on "The Replacement Killers" and "Along Came Polly" and leave the store. I'm dejected.

See, the problem is that when you return the two movies from the Movie Pass, you're obligated to rent out two movies; it's pretty much free! But the problem is that you really don't want to watch any of the crappy DVDs they have ... but you can't leave the store emptyhanded.

This causes problems where people spend too much time trying to find a movie they might like. But the quandary is worsened when it becomes impossible to cancel your movie pass. You reason to yourself, "Hey, I've got two more weeks. Even if I can't find anything to rent today, "Harry Potter" comes out next week. I'll just get that and then I'll cancel the movie pass. But next week, you come back and notice that "Hero" is coming out next week ... so I guess you really aren't going to stop the movie pass.

I look around the Blockbuster and notice many other helpless souls ... just looking for two movies to get and get out. And it's not even enough to get one ... you have to get one. More than once I passed a couple who were going through the racks, trying to find a movie... "Honey, want to see this?" "I saw it, it's not too good." "What about this one?" "We saw that one already, honey." I wouldn't be surprised if young couples with Blockbuster movie passes had a higher rate of breakups than non-movie pass people.

I long for the days with Blockbuster's overpriced rental prices; at least then you could just not rent something...

I'm stuck in a horrible addiction I can't break. Help.

Posted by roy on November 27, 2004 at 10:56 PM in Foolishness | 19 Comments

Thanks to everyone that wished me a happy 21st! To those of you who didn't, I have removed you from my mental "friends" list and will forever hate you... NOT!

I'm not a huge fan of celebrating one's birthdays ... it seems of no real consequence in my life. I guess I'm just not a huge fan of "celebrations" in general; I had to be forced by my parents to walk at my high school graduation (which amusingly happened after my freshman year in college).

In any case, I did what any self-respecting male does when he turns 21 ... I went to Barnes and Noble to find books to read ... had dinner with some friends, and then I played Risk and Monopoly with Yush, Moonie the Gentleman and Mr. Terrence. I kid you not. Let me just say that I wish we had taken Yush to Vegas for some craps (Bert, take this kid).

In any case, Nasty Nate got me a wonderful gift ... which I will now share with you:

You know you love it. Do not deny it, children. GOT TICKETS TO THE GUN SHOW?!?!?!?!??!?!

Thanks to Bert for paying for my dinner Saturday night, thanks to Sun for paying for my dinner tonight, thanks to Nasty Nate for the shirt, thanks to everyone!

Currently listening to: Vanessa Carlton - White Houses
Posted by roy on November 29, 2004 at 01:58 AM in Personal | 13 Comments

A few days ago, I bought Real Ultimate Power... a book based on the website REAL ULTIMATE POWER.

The book is HILARIOUS. There's a whole level of humor that I didn't expect when I picked up the book ...

So much that I had a dream last night about being a ninja. For some reason, all my friends were hating on me so I had to teach them a lesson. My ninja blade showed no mercy to all those fools... muhahaha.

I woke up slightly depressed that I had such a dorky dream.

. . .

The main NPServers was hacked today. Great. There goes 100+ sites. Oddly enough, Tabulas wasn't affected (huh?)

I'm leaning towards shutting down NP.net free hosting (actually I'm pretty sure this is happening). I guess the official announcement will probably happen this weekend.

. . .

I'd also like to say that FedEx sucks. Out of three packages that I have received via FedEx this year, two of them were late, even when given the maximum of 5 business days for FedEx ground. The other time, it arrived right on time ... in 4 days. UPS has never screwed me over as bad as FedEx. I will never send stuff with FedEx.

Posted by roy on November 29, 2004 at 08:24 PM in Ramblings | 11 Comments

An interesting proposition was brought up to me; someone e-mailed me out of the blue offering to buy Tabulas. Obviously that's not happening, but I did counteroffer by saying that I'd be willing to sell on perpetual license of the Tabulas platform. A long conversation came from that one e-mail, and we started chatting on AIM.

Things are looking pretty good ... I'll be able to: (1) be paid off for my work in Tabulas (2) let someone else run a competitor so I can learn some strategies on how to improve Tabulas (3) and not lose any control over Tabulas!

The thought of licensing the Tabulas platform never crossed my mind; the guy has a cool domain name (admittedly) and he's been researching multi-user blog platforms for a few months now ... and he says he likes mine the best because it's "less technical." It's true. The other (big) multi-blog platform is LiveJournal, and the thing is *so* technical that it takes almost an expert to run and maintain ... plus the whole system isn't really geared for the "technically dumb" people.

I sent off a range for licensing the software and he seemed quite receptive. With some stuff that's happening around my personal life, I could definitely use this money.

If this licensing thing comes through, I may partner with someone to start licensing this stuff while I focus on the set-up part; there has to be more marketing experts out there who want to quickly drop a few grand and get a full-fledged blogging platform and try their hand at running these sites. Blogging sites are the new "hosting" companies ... except these blogging platforms give users easier management while making server management much easier. I never thought one could make so much money from simply licensing! And there have got to be some organizations that want to set this stuff up... come ON... SOMEONE! If there's a market for NINJA BOOKs, there's a market for this.

Posted by roy on November 30, 2004 at 02:06 AM in Tabulas | 14 Comments

I'm "jumping on the bandwagon" so to speak. I've seen this type of post before, so I'll just give it a try.

Ask me any question. Serious or flippant, I don't care. Curious about my useless thoughts on a particular subject? Care to know who I think is hot? Curious how I got the aliases 'honging' and 'caletucker?' Ask away. I'll try to answer all questions truthfully. If you're too embarassed to use your username, feel free to post anonymously.

Posted by roy on November 30, 2004 at 02:13 AM in Personal | 31 Comments
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