Thursday, October 28, 2004

How is this possible?

I live on the 20th floor, but I can still hear stuff going on outside as if I was on the ground floor. Sometimes I forget and turn to look out the window, then remember that I'm too high above it to see what's going on.

Not a big concern, but it sometimes bugs me.

In other news I'm still unemployed. I think I stopped caring about work, so I'm just slumming. Next week I get serious. I know I say that every other week, but this time I mean it. And this time I mean that I mean it.

I mean it.

Monday, October 25, 2004

I have come home from Homecoming

This was Homecoming weekend at queen's, and the first one I've gotten to experience as an alumnus. Friends were seen, beer was drunk, and all my money was spent.

The weekend started on Thursday afternoon when I arrived at Kevin's house in Kingston. He lives in the heart of the student ghetto, just off Aberdeen street, which is the main party street. I went drinking at the QP with Greg, and the rest of the night is a bit of a blur.

Friday was the first official day of Homecoming, and the one I was looking forward to most, for one simple thing: Homecoming Ritual. Ritual is an event that happens every Friday at Clark Hall Pub from noon til 6. People go, get blasted in the middle of the afternoon, and sometimes go to classes or labs drunk off their asses. It also gets incredibly busy even on non-important weekends. Add several hundred alumni coming back to go to Ritual and you've got a recipe for a packed bar and capacity violations. This was the first year I was actually able to get in, thanks to my alumni card. I drank a personal best 4 pitchers, and then went to get some dinner.

That night was the Principal's Ceilidh (that's Gaelic, it's pronounced kay-lee). Basically a meet and greet with the administration, important people on campus, and other alumni. Plus the Bands gives one of their important performances of the year (the other being at the John Orr dinner). I met up with a bunch of friends and we all raided the buffet table. I was still recovering from Ritual, so I just drank water all night, which makes me both boring and lame, but I needed to stay alive. After the Bands performed (sounding much better than they did last year) I hung out with all my friends who are still in it, and went home to pass out.

Saturday morning I had planned to go to various warmups and pancake keggers before the football game, but a few of us decided to go to Epicure (a neat little restaurant not far from campus) for breakfast instead. Bad idea, because the place was packed and took over an hour to get and eat breakfast. We wanted to step off with the Bands for the ghetto parade and march to the stadium, but we couldn't. We caught them about halfway through the ghetto parade, and then stopped to chat with some people. We never did catch up again, but we walked through the alumni parade twice (once trying to catch the Bands, again because we stopped to buy a drink from some kids).

The football game was an abysmal affair. The Gaels got crushed by Western (the biggest rival Queen's has) 45-17. It was tied at 17 at halftime, so it really sucked. We left midway through the 3rd quarter, after Western scored 2 touchdowns in 6 minutes, and went to the Ports.

The Portsmouth Tavern is where the Bands has gone after football games since the stadium was built at West Campus in the 50s. For Homecoming, all the former Bandsies eventually wind up there, so you need to go early to have a chance of getting in. This year they roped off an area for the Bands to occupy when they arrived, which was a nice gesture. Eventually they came, and everybody got drunk. Especially me. I don't remember how many beers I had or how much money I spent, but I remember buying drinks for a lot of people. After we left the Ports, we wound up at a house party where I ate all the remaining pizza, and then left for Aberdeen.

When I got there only half of Aberdeen was a madhouse. When I left, the entire thing was.

Imagine a street that's full of so many people you can't even move. Now make all the people drunk and the ground littered with beer bottles, and you'll have a rough estimate of what Aberdeen Street is like during Homecoming. I somehow managed to find some of my friends in the crowd, but they were all out of beer. After eventually locating a kegger and getting some free alumni beer, I figured I should quit drinking if I wanted to avoid the worst hangover of my life. I pushed my way through the crowd trying to get out, met up with other friends I had been separated from earlier, and eventually got back to Kevin's house, where we watched Family Guy until I passed out.

The hangover was pretty bad, but not the worst I've had. The rest of today was pretty uneventful. I said goodbye to some people, had a quiet lunch, did the crossword, and then came back to Ottawa. I think I'm going to sleep really well tonight.

All told, my first Homecoming as an alum was awesome, and I hope the next one is as good.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Adventures in adventuring

Today I'm installing Mandrake Linux on my brother's laptop. I've never installed any type of Linux on anything before, so I'm a bit apprehensive. Hopefully I won't screw this up too badly.

Got thrown by the partitioning. I figured a small base partition and a large swap partition would be good. Hopefully that won't come back to bite me in the ass.

All the packages I picked to install don't even half fill the base partition, so I guess that's a good sign. Wish me luck, imaginary readers.

Sunday, October 17, 2004

I am one to emulate

I downloaded a couple SNES games tonight. I got Mortal Kombat, Yoshi's Island, and Secret of Mana. Haven't gotten to Secret of Mana yet, but I played the others a bunch.

I just downloaded Mortal Kombat to see if the turbo on the emulator would make the Test Your Might mini games easier. And the answer is yes, infinitely. Take that giant block of diamond!

I also figured out that if both players use Johnny Cage, you can't do the move where you punch the guy in the nuts. Logical conclusion: Johnny Cage is a pussy.

I was really happy to get Yoshi's Island, because I remember renting it way back in the day. I liked it, but it was too messed up for me to get into. Now I'm a lot older and a little wiser, and, to infringe on a copyright, I'm loving it. It's exactly as messed up as I remember (the first boss is a giant guy that you spit eggs at to knock his pants off) but I can appreciate it for the pure absurdity of it all.

How can you not love a game where one of the bosses is a ghost in a flower pot that you just need to push down a hole? Or one where you can freeze bad guys by eating a frozen watermelon and then blowing on them?

Friday, October 15, 2004


One of friends is moving, my brother's best friend is getting married to one of my good friends, and Homecoming is next week. Seems like a good time to look back at things that have either passed out of my life.

First off, LAN gaming with my friends. Back in high school we'd assemble all our computers into a network and play games for entire weekends. Seemed to be no limit to the amount of fun we'd have. Then graduation came. I went off to Kingston, Mark went off to Barrie, Rob went to Ottawa, and Matthew went to Pickering (eventually). The following year the rest of the old gang went off to various places too, and that seemed to be the end of it. A bunch of them live in Ottawa now, and they get together what seems like every month, but I'm not sure if I want to start again. It seems like any attempt to get back into the LAN scene would be a pale imitation of its former glory, and I'm not sure if I can stand to see that happen to something I once loved. I might go watch the next one, just to see them all again.

Second would be all my groups of friends. The high school guys, the Computing gang, the Bandsies, all the floor guys. You don't really notice how much you depend on your friends for things until they're all far away. I need to get out and make new friends, but it's tough to do without some sort of activity or common interest to base a friendship around. I guess I could meet all Rob's friends, but I'd like to make my own and not be the guy that just shows up and makes everyone feel awkward.

There are more, but these are the two I miss most. Except for the Bands, which I talked about in a different post. No need to repeat myself.

I want to write something deep and meaningful about the passage of time here, but I don't have the words to do it right now. I can live with that.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

I need a hobby

Sitting around all day looking for jobs and drinking coffee is getting on my nerves. I need some other way to pass my time. Granted I don't spend the entire day jobhunting, I do spend a good part of it doing that. Other times I either chat on msn or read Fark. Point is, I feel like I'm wasting my life.

Every time I start doing something, I feel like I should be doing something else, so I stop and wind up doing nothing. Maybe I don't need a hobby, just some way to stick to a task that isn't essential.

Thanks to a strike, one of my sources of jobs is unavailable. The government's job bank is maintained by whatever union is on strike (I'm not sure which one, because there are 3 government unions with similar names, and one of them is on strike, and one of the others might be doing a sympathy strike, or something). So until they resolve it, I'm left with the regular job sites (which haven't gotten me anywhere) and the classifieds.

I hate complaining about life, but it seems to be all I have to talk about.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

I'm sick of turkey

2 Thanksgiving dinners, plus leftovers. 2 full plates per dinner, 1 of leftovers.

If I never eat turkey again, it'll be too soon.

Until Christmas, that is...

Saturday, October 09, 2004


I'm listening to Queen's vs University of Toronto on Queen's internet radio. The Gaels are leading 17-0 in the first quarter, so I'm greatly enjoying it.

Brad Smith just returned a punt for a touchdown, the first time a Gael has done that for 15 years. During the play the announcer got so excited I thought his head was going to explode. Hilarious.

And Toronto just put one of their receivers in to play quarterback. Wow

In other news my CD burner finally came in. Just have to get out to the store to pick it up. Apparently they've had it for a while, but their email notification system isn't working properly. Wish I'd asked about it sooner.

Friday, October 08, 2004

I hate pigeons

I spent a good part of the afternoon sweeping up pigeon crap from my balcony. I guess the previous tenants didn't have a problem with pigeons shitting all over the balcony, because there was way more than could have accumulated in the 2 or 3 weeks the place was vacant. Luckily none of it was fresh, so it swept up pretty nicely.

Enjoying this fascinating look into my life?

Anyway, I still ahven't started on the project Mark and I were discussing, which is a good thing because I misunderstood what he wanted. Unfortunately it just became a lot harder, but I think I can still do it. Not sure if I'll be able to do it well, but we'll see.

I'm sure nobody's too interested in what it is, based on the lack of comments from my previous update, so I've learned something. Nobody cares about programming.

In response to my various MSN names complainign about the pigeons, 2 different people advised me to get a pellet gun and just pick them off. It's tempting, but I'm not sure if I want to gruesomely murder them. My bacony might get haunted by angry pigeon spirits. Not sure what they'd do besides cry ghostly cooings. Maybe shit ectoplasm everywhere.

I need to start making smaller pots of coffee. I'm all jittery. Coffee never used to make me jitter like this, guess I'm getting old.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Freelance programmer

Is there any money in being a freelance programmer?

Earlier today my friend Mark and I were discussing streaming music and we had the idea to write an application that would let people add requested songs to a shoutcast server. A quick search on Sourceforge revealed that that idea had been done, so we moved on to something else, a multi-threaded chatterbox. If you don't know, a chatterbox is like a forum thread, except it's visible on the site at all times, and you can add into it whenever you want. Sites like Everything ad Deskmod have them. Or Deskmod did before they shut down.

Anyway, I'm looking at writing this and maybe starting up my own little programming business. I figure it won't make too much money, but I can use it for experience.

I should also write something for my phone that will remind me to lock the doors when I get out of cars. I always seem to forget that.

In unrelated job-seeking news, one person who I sent a resume to was in the Queen's Bands from 1978 til 1980. I was in the Queen's Bands from 2000 til 2004. Unfortunately, even the prospect of helping a fellow Bandsie couldn't allow her to hire a patent agent who knew nothing about patents. Apparently everybody wants experience in that field, excpet if you have a Ph.D or some other high-level degree.

If you're wondering, I played the snare drum and the bass drum in the Bands. More about the Bands here: Queen's Bands. For the lazy, it's a pipe band and brass band, plus cheerleaders and hot hot highland dancers.

I miss the Bands.

Monday, October 04, 2004

So now I'm a blogger

Never thought the day would come. I'm not really sure how this is going to work out because I don't really like to talk about myself too much, and I don't really do anything during the day, but I guess nobody on these things really does.

My name is Scott. I live in Ottawa. I'm unemployed and have an honours degree in computer science. I think my lack of a job can be traced to my lack of ambition, so I've got nobody to blame but myself. It's not so much that I'm lazy, I just really don't want to do work. Think about it, given the choice between getting up early every morning and going to a boring office to sit at a desk for 8 hours, or sleeping til noon and playing video games all day, which would you pick?

The job obviously, that way you make money. Stupid reality :(

More about me. I used to go to Queen's University, until I graduated. Most of my friends are still there, which sucks because they're all in Kingston and I never get to see them. I guess this is where I make my "shout outs" to my friends like people used to do in their ICQ profiles, but I'm not going to do that. I will say hi to Kevin, and blame him for getting me involved in this whole thing. Sens in 6.

I have some friends in Ottawa too, but I don't really see them too often. Weird since one of them lives really close to me. The others I don't have phone numbers or msn contacts for, so I need to get on that.

But you don't care about that, gentle reader. Unless you really are a gentle reader, in which case you do care. Now I'm confused, so I'll sign off.

Wait, do you sign off a blog?


This is a blog on the internet.