I'm back in
CaliforniaPullman after what was, quite possibly, the longest break in my life. A huge number of events occurred, so sit back and let the drama factory roll!
It all begins with littleblueduck. Specifically, our Facebook status has changed to "in a relationship." I think you know what this means. I don't often write about my relationships on this blog - don't expect the trend to change. It all ends with my semester GPA - I'm happy with how I performed. But, I think the joke has gone on too far when I'm sent a letter by the National Honors Society. Isn't that reserved for people with, I don't know, 3.9s?
Before I left town, I settled in for a crunch. My company had a presentation with the University of Washington and there was a significant amount of code to transition to our new framework. I had to be a programming dynamo! So, of course, I purchased Darwinia, a game I had already beaten. Fortunately, I didn't actually allow myself to be caught up in it. I beat the first level and went back to work.
A few days later, I was hanging out at jawdropper's. Both her roommate and her mentioned they were leaving for the westside shortly. As I had not yet lined up a ride, I took advantage of situation and rudely asked if I could hitch a ride. Megan acquiesced and the next day we averaged 70 and listened to a lot of rap. A lot.
Megan dropped me off at my parent's house. I walked in and was immediately set upon with a case of the boreds. Fortunately, within eight hours, my family erupted into a fight - complete with fists, chokeholds, and people spitting in each others' faces. I avoided spending the night there the remainder of the break.
Christmas netted me:
- A backpack with homosexual tendencies.
- $60 in cash spent on gas and food.
- A card.
Oh - shit - cards. With all the craziness, I didn't write mine. I have officially failed at Christmas. C'est la vie.
I started living at kung_fu_mike and samfu's house. Quake 4 had recently been purchased and with the addition of fixed NVidia drivers, I played through and beat the hell out of it. Did I mention I should have been doing work? Well, screw that. We all piled into a car and drove to the Oregon coast instead.
You see, Strahl had invited us to a beach house on the coast to chill with his family. Free food, company, and hurricane weather upon a rocky coast. An excellent backdrop to my strapping on headphones and spending almost every waking moment connected to the Internet through a GPRS modem and programming. I did take a couple breaks: The first, I setup an ad-hoc wireless network through the previously mentioned modem so everyone had net access. The second, to be stuffed in a closet with seven people all with different agendas. Just before everything got old, it was all over - which sucked because Strahl's family were all cool! What seemed like the contents of the entire house were packed up and we took off toward Portland to celebrate the new year.
We arrived in Portland and within hours a whole cast of actors arrived. Our incredibly gracious and patient host was Ellie (whose last name and address I noted and promptly lost), a lovely young lady who Strahl had met on a train in Europe and kept in contact with. noisybastard, Amie, samfu, littleblueduck, mel16, Strahl, and kung_fu_mike were all in attendance. How could the New Years not rock my socks off?
Well, very easily apparently. The holidays aren't known for bringing out the best in people - and with so many strong personalities and undercurrents it made for a bi-polar New Years. Everyone acted bitchy at various points and time. Everyone also took it too personally at various points and times. (Hint: 5:44 am vs. 3:13 pm.) (Double-hint: Hi, Ellie!)
Regardless, Kell's Irish Pub and the Boiler Room are dope places. The former provided tasty food and effective booze. The latter provided entertaining karaoke and a definite raucous. Portland, even if it's designed like King Minos' labyrinth, has a great night scene. But, I am still dead set against living there. I'm curious which taxpayer supported organization is responsible for the entire state being so gray?!
With my time in Portland coming to an end, I returned with littleblueduck to Pullman for a night. The next day, I traveled with Bloom and Joe back to Seattle for the presentation. We arrived sometime in the evening and thanks to a hookup from Amie, we stayed at the (I always wanted to write this) luxurious downtown Seattle Sheraton. I have a $7 charge on my debit card for a bottle of Corona sans lime.
One almost sleepless night of programming, a McDonald's orange juice, a practice run through, a slice of pumpkin bread, almost an hour of waiting, and we had our audience. We delivered the presentation - my first one with a technical snafu - and now we wait. To write that I'm apprehensive would be understating my mood.
Since then, I have been enjoying the last few days of my break. I didn't want to break my newly formed habit of programming, so I started writing a little utility to satisfy one of my daily needs. NetControl is a Linux wireless configuration tool. All the current ones suck - this one will hopefully suck less.
Finally, if you're into voyeurism, check out my schedule for this coming semester! I haven't even factored in work yet...