August 1 I went to math class, and I came home, and I programmed. That pretty much sums up the day. I am now 600 lines into my programming project, and beginning to wonder if I shouldn't start to test what I've written. But in a program with 30-odd functions, writing a test framework seems like a complicated exercise. I think I'll wait 'til I finish, and test it all at once. In the evening I finally got my exercise for the day, going off bowling with friends. Well, I am improving gradually, but I still can't seem to convince my arms that accuracy and power aren't a zero-sum proposition. Just because I try to launch the ball hard shouldn't necessarily mean it goes into the gutter. Unless you're me of course, in which case it does...
August 2 My day off turned out to have more excitement than I bargained for. Spent the morning doing a bit of programming, and then, for lack of good ideas of what to do, my girlfriend and I went up to San Francisco for the afternoon. I guess my family is allergic to cities, so I hadn't really had much of an opportunity to explore the city. Otherwise I might have come to the startling conclusion that it isn't so bad after all. There are some impressive buildings (I'm speaking of the Masonic temple, not the TransAmerica building, which I don't approce of). There are some nice views. There are some interesting neighborhoods (Chinatown, where we had lunch in a quirky little restaurant that actually had better food than most places I've been to). A fun little trip, punctuated at the end with a visit to Golden Gate park (which was somewhat cold, and fairly foggy). On the bright side, I now realize that with an automatic transition, San Fran traffic may be intimidating, but it is managable.
August 3 Began the morning with a flute lesson. Seems rather as if, now that I'm destined to disapper, I'm being assigned play pieces that I really like (and have like for a good long while). After that, we went to Sears for a torque wrench (to operate on the car), and to Cheap Pete's for matting paper (to mount photographs with). In the early afternoon, we proceeded to take a look at the car. The break pad indicator has been on for over a month, so our first task was to look at the pads. This was when we discovered that the jack for the car was broken (although still servicable) and the wheel wrench was absolutely nowhere to be found. So we jacked up the car, took off a wheel, and discovered the break pad sensor, hanging, suspended, in no particular position. Hmm... Looks like we should be a little more intelligent when buying a car. Finally, we took the door apart, to find out what was wrong with the driver's side window. The afternoon is kind of vague, mainly because I was completing my behemoth program, and, well, it wasn't being helpful trying to complete. I actually began debugging it around 10PM, but decided sleep was for fun than arguing with gdb, so I did.
August 4 Most of this morning went to the finer points of debugging. The good news is, my program to store grocery orders successfully takes input, and stores it to disk. Basically, it works. This left me with the unenviable task of sprinkling comments through 900 lines of code. This task accomplished, I began working on my paper for World History on the environment. It hasn't been working all that well though, since the paper still needs 2 or 3 more pages. A slow day...
August 5 Is it really Monday again? Guess so. Math class, followed by slightly productive afternoon, followed by programming class. I really could make these summaries shorter if I tried. I discovered a bug in my dictionary program (not the programming project) about 2 hours before it was due, so I learned the fine art of working around problems in algorithms which are fundamentally shaky. Programming class finished up the discussion of binary trees, and moved onto hash tables. I guess, I'm more interested in hashing functions, than hashing tables, but they both are quite cool. Class finished early, so we went out for dinner at 3 Amigos. Learned first-hand how quickly sour-cream degrades into white liquid. At least it wasn't a shirt I cared about.
August 6 Had a math test first thing this morning. Following that, spent the remainder of class discussing some more classic mathematical puzzles like the Bridges of Konigsberg and the Cannibal and the Savages. Quite amusing actually. World History class dealt with the Industrial Revolution, which, while I prefer political to economic or social history, really is quite fascinating. Came home in the afternoon to work on my paper, but got engrossed in finishing the programming project, which I duly did. Whew... I can feel the stress building.
August 7 Scored a rather uninspiring 85 on the math test. Realized that reviewing one's test to catch silly errors really is a good idea. Discovered I'd left my binder and all my stuff at home, save my math book. Brilliant. Class had a whirlwind discussion of graphs, circuits, Cannibals, bridges, paths and god knows what else. World History class actually ended early, when we finished up on the topic of imperialism. I spent much of the afternoon on the environmental paper, and the rest of it glancing over my notes from programming class. Programming class today consisted of the final, which, to my pleasant surprise, worked out well. So well, in fact, that my friend and I had the opportunity to go out for Thai cuisine for dinner, and I still made it home in good time.
August 8 Sniff. Sniff. I'm gonna miss getting up at half past 5 and racing down 280 to get to math class on time. Today was the last day of school. I did, in fact, get up at half past 5, and drove to De Anza at decidedly unrelaxed pace. Arriving at 6:55 (please don't do the math, I just paid off a parking ticket at Foothill, I don't need any more difficulties), I did a brief stint of studying, went in, and took the test. As they (Garrison Keillor) say(s) in Minnesota, "it could be worse." Then came the World History final, which I think I wrote a better essay for than on any other test in the class. Finally came waiting in line for a good bit to sell back my textbooks, and driving home. The afternoon was quite a bit more relaxed. I guess for me, summer is beginning (those first 2 weeks after graduation before the quarter started don't really count, since I was sick, and not exactly able to do much).
August 9 Catch-up time. First order of business: update these webpages. Decided to finally once and for all do something about the spam I've been getting. Removed my primary e-mail address from here, put the new, secondary one up, with a little bit of mangling: to mail me, you will have to remove NO and SPAM from the below address. After that, I got caught up with trying to make GMP cooperate on MacOS X. I'm still getting segfaults with the pi program, so I can't calculate more than about 200,000 digits. Spent the afternoon beginning to clean up the living room by vacuuming, and trying to keep windows open to get rid of the odor of a burnt pot (notice: I said a burnt pot). Otherwise had a relaxing afternoon. Received yet more mail from Stanford, this one telling me where I will be housed next year: Junipero House in Wilbur Hall. That should be interesting...
August 10 Looks like I am not in that great physical shape. Today's morning exercise of trimming the trees next to the house, followed by an attempt to clear the brush around the back of the house was a bit exhausting. One plus is that the back of the house is a lot less shady than it used to be. In the process, I also tried to de-cobweb the windows, and discovered quite a large spider population. They have been "relocated." In the afternoon, I did some vacuuming, downloaded RedHat 7.3.93b, and attempted to help my dad work on the car. Sadly enough, the replacement breakpads are a bit too small, so we couldn't fix those. The driver's side window, however, is nominally fixed, for the first time in 7 or 8 months. Yay.
August 11 It was foggy this morning. At oh, about 6:30AM. By the time I was actually up and about and putting air in the car's left front tire (it was 10psi less than it should have been), the sky was clear, the sun was shining, the crows were screeching and the temperature was about 75. Comfy, but only when not wearing dark clothes. This change was fortunate, since I went on a walk to the beach, and, deciding to resurrect old habits, built a sand wall to hold back the waves. Sadly enough, one particularly large wave washed away most of my wall, and so I was well-soaked below the knee. The evening's bowling episode was noteworthy for the fact that I got 5 strikes and 4 spares in 3 games. For me, who rarely gets more than one of either per game, it was a novelty. Of course, the 15-20 gutterballs kinda compensated for any extra points they might have netted me!
August 12 So this is what it means to be on vacation. Wake up early. Spend lots of time doing weird things with the computer. Attempt to clear out some of the brush accumulating in the rose garden. Oh yeah, and spend a couple of hours talking with various people on the phone. All-in-all, a nice mix, the only downside being that my search for the perfect Linux desktop environment still continues. Hmm... The major project of the day: removing all references of my soon to be defunct e-mail address from the webpage, as well as trying to spamproof the new one, worked fairly well too. The evening was spent watching an old movie, "Two for the Road," in good company.
August 13 LinuxWorldExpoDay. Say that 3 times fast! Off to the LinuxWorld Expo at the SF Moscone center. Trip went well despite a couple of snafus. I was generally pleased to see that despite the economic difficulties of the time, Linux companies are alive and well (or at least, alive and quite vocal about it). The biggest surprises to me were the HP booth, which was enormous, and the Microsoft booth, which wasn't. Collected a good bit of free-stuff (not as much as at LWE 2000, but...) and returned in the afternoon with heavy bags. Had some difficulty understanding the parking citation a kind policeman had left on the car. Fortunately it was just a warning (2 tickets in 3 weeks is a bit more than I really want to deal with). Oh, almost forgot, the Google co-founder gave a pretty cool keynote, although I don't think it quite merited the name "the Open-source Tsunami," since Linux and Open-Source were mentioned only in passing...
August 14 ReallyNotTerriblyExcitingDay. Not sure that jamming all the words together was really all that necessary. Today was gonna be the day that I finished off all the odd little tasks I've been putting off for weeks on end. Was, that is, until I found that was decidedly lacking in motivation. So I played around with pi programs, crashed my TiBook using MPW, and generally didn't do much. I did go to dinner with the folks from the school's Quiz Bowl team. Everybody's still as crazy as they ever were, so that at least bodes well for the futures.
August 15 Went to wirk with dad today. Arrived just in time to see that GCC 3.2 had been officially released. Congrats to the GCC team. Spent the morning trying to build gcc and xemacs on ia64-hpux. Failing this, I built them on pa-risc instead. Also of interest was a discussion of QMTest, a seemingly very cleverly designed testsuite framework. Got bored in the afternoon, but did find an interesting miniature copy of libc: dietlibc. Finally had a doctor appointment, and went to the Stanford Theatre (a somewhat unscheduled trip, but...). Yawn.
August 16 Much of the morning was spent re-reading some of my favorite old fantasy books. Too bad I can't take my book collection to college (well, actually I could, but until I know the size of my room, I should probably wait...). Also spent the morning rebuilding GCC 3.2. Discovered that multithreaded builds with Ada enabled were broken, and so decided to do something more productive, ie clean up my room. Rediscovered a number of items in the process (including my camera). Started packing my bags for tomorrow (leaving for New York), but was smoothly diverted to go back to reading. In the evening, went out with two friends for miniature golf, and mused about old times. I think somebody tinted my glasses with a rose color while I wasn't looking. Me nostalgic? About school? Yikes.
August 17 Almost everything worked out exactly right today. Operative word: almost. Had a flute lesson first thing in the morning, went to the airport (SFO), got through security without any difficulties, and made the plane with no difficulties. Guess flying doesn't always have to be a pain in the neck. Spent most of the flight reading A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers. Odd book. Discovered that the headphones I brought are insufficient to drown out airplane background noise, so I compensated by turning the volume all the way up. Both the inflight meal and inflight movie were lacking in substance, but that's hardly new. Met my grandparents successfully at Kennedy (NY) airport, and aside from a one-hour wait for baggage, everything went smoothly. Got to bed so late that I didn't even have to worry about jet-lag.
August 18 Awoke at 8AM local time. Took a shower, unpacked my luggage, and practiced flute. Received the announcement at 11AM that a number of relatives would be visiting. Announcement would have been more correct if it mentioned that the number was ~20. First arrivals at 1:45PM. Last arrivals at 7:00PM. Long day full of conversation and food. Since all the relatives who came were cousins of some sort (well, almost all), my grandparent's former neighbors made the joke (being the only non-blood relations there) that they were cousins too, one house removed. Day finally terminated with a discussion of the nature of world, and whether it could be both spiritual and physical, around midnight.
August 19 Since my watch obligingly died last week, I don't quite know when I got up. What I did notice was that after having breakfast and playing flute, it was past 2PM. Guess I'm definitely still on California time. Spent the day planning for the rest of the week: deciding on shows, potential outings and whatnot. I had the distinct pleasure of reading summaries of 189 theatrical productions, trying to decide which we wanted to see. I never knew culture could be so difficult.
August 20 Got up and did nothing all morning. Then rushed down to lower Manhattan to pick up a relative and go out to lunch. Discussed issues ranging from international justice to the U.S. economy over Indian food (in my case curry). In the course of talking, found the perfect word to describe the people running this country (Rumsfeld, Rice, et al): thugs. After lunch, spent a while wandering around, and finally ended up at the former site of the World Trade Center. I certainly was not prepared for the site of 4 square city blocks, entirely empty, right in the center of Manhattan. In the afternoon, we went to a Persian Movie entitled "Secret Ballot" about a government agent sent to a remote island to collect ballots in an election(hint: the agent is a woman, and this greatly complicates matters). Eventually returned home for dinner.
August 21 Yawn. Sleep's one of those things I just can't get enough of. Spent the morning finishing the book I started on the plane. Used to be I could finish a couple of books on a flight to NY, this time I didn't even finish one. For the afternoon, we drove downtown for a modern revival of Ovid's Metamorphoses. Following a lunch which convinced me that I really do not like calzones, we watched the performance of almost a dozen Greek myths, each of which had some modern twist. Phaeton, for example, was featured in conversation with a psychiatrist, explaining the trauma caused by his "distant" father, Apollo. In the evening, I tried to help my grandmother with the computer, but instead jammed the CD drive with a (presumably) bad CD. Stupid new iMacs don't have any hardware eject button. Sometime in between, I was also treated to the spectacle of Cary Grant as a sleazy newpaperman in "His Girl Friday."
August 22 Woke up at the balatantly uncool hour of 9:00AM. Today is a special day for 2 reasons. Firstly, my cousin is now 6 years old, and will never be 5 again. Secondly (and far less importantly), the surface area of my head has been decreased significantly thanks to a haircut. Too bad, I was rather fond of waking up in the morning, looking like a haystack. For the afternoon, we went downtown (see a pattern?), and saw "The Overcoat," a short, hilarious musical based on Nikolai Gogol's play of the same name. "Oh how I love to copy letter T, letter T..." Went to a middle-eastern restaurant for dinner, where I finally learned what Turkish delight is, having wondered for the last 10 years, ever since C.S. Lewis' The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe was first read to me (remember how the witch bribed Edmund?).
August 23 Off early to pick up a cousin in New Jersey. We wanted to take the 11:30 Semi-Circle boat ride around southern Manhattan, and thanks to traffice being merciful, we made it. The weather was shockingly familiar: 68 degrees farenheit, gray clouds overhead and occasional gusts of wind. The tour was a great opportunity for me to actually use my camera, so I now have a goodly number of pictures. After the tour, heavy traffice blocked our route homeward, so my grandmother gave me a tour of the formerly Jewish ghetto in the Bronx where she grew up. Now it is a black ghetto. In the evening, we went up to Boscobel, where there was a hilarious performance of Shakespeare's "Comedy of Errors" in an outdoor pavilion. Like "Metamorphoses," this too was modernized a bit, but the paparazzi who reported on the growing scandal in Ephesus fit just right.
August 24 Having spent a fun week in Hartsdale, NY, I return home today. Spent the first part of the morning packing. By some miracle, I also managed to extract my CD from the iMac (see 8/21) just before we left the house. The 2 hours I spent shopping for clothes can be divided into two segments: (1) when I was frustrated and hopeful that eventually I'd find something and (2) when I was frustrated, and simply wanted to leave quickly. Let's just say I don't enjoy shopping. Drive to the airport was uneventful save for an impromptu change in route. Although my bag was tested for explosive residue at security, everything else went normally, and after 6 hours reading about the stupidity of the various parts of American society, the plane landed at SFO, and I discovered myself, for the first time in a week, to be distinctly cold.
August 25 I am home. This realization didn't do a whole lot of good when I woke up at 4:30AM, freezing because I'd kicked the comforter of the bed. In the morning, my dad and I did a hike in Purrisima canyon, doing a loop up to Skyline. Despite virtually no physical activity throughout all of last week, I wasn't that badly out of shape (and, to be fair, running around NYC can be a strenuous occupation sometimes). Discovered that the car's windows still works, and the brake pads still need replacement. Spent the afternoon wandering Montara in good company. At some point, I also visited the computer, and managed to consolidate all my e-mail into 1 nice 35MB mailbox file. That's my e-mail from the last 2.5 years, excluding spam!
August 26 Today was a good day to be lazy. I actually accomplished a fair bit though, starting with resurrecting the iPod (it had died on the plane trip back). I discovered that I had to reapply at Canada College, because I am no longer in high school (there's a flute choir I'm trying to attend over there). There were all sorts of other forms to fill out too, primarily dealing with Stanford things. Looks like the housing confirmation was due a few weeks ago. Oops. Went bowling after dinner with a good sized group of friends from high school. My bowling skills are quite limited, but I managed to get my highest score ever on the 2nd game, so maybe I'm improving. I sure hope so, since most other forms of entertainment don't result in sore fingers.
August 27 First stop of the day: the orthodontist. Not exactly, but most of the morning was spent driving from one place to another, or walking around downtown Half Moon Bay. Orthodontist appointment appeared to go well, save for the fact that their camera (to take pictures of the position of teeth) wasn't quite working. After this my girlfriend and I visited our 8th grade English teacher, and eventually decided that lunch would be a good idea. We got sandwiches from a deli, and went down to the beach. Only one problem: unbeknownst to us there were quite a few yellow-jackets at the beach. Yeah. Lunch was a bit nervous. In the evening, we went over to Palo Alto and the Stanford Theatre, where we saw "Roman Holiday." It was a nice movie, but the total absence of the 5 or so people who were supposed to meet us was a bit distracting. After the movie we did discover them in, the back, having arrived a bit late. Oh well.
August 28 My back is really sore today. As a result, I mostly sat up straight, and tried to do things on the computer, or read. Did some useful research about Stanford's music program, and course offerings for next year, but also realized that quite a number of things still need to be looked into, like how I can fit everything I want into my schedule. Oh well, life's not fun with a few complications now and again. Also tried to clean up a small backlog of paperwork. Still not quite done with that though.
August 29 Still have a sore back. Didn't have particularly much to do today, so I showed the Stanford campus to my girlfriend. Blue sky and a warm day were initially welcomed companions, though my car's lack of functional air-conditioning made the warm day seem more like a hot day. In the course of our ramblings, I tried to find where my dorm will be, but made a silly mistake, and didn't succeed. After the tour, we went off to California street, where we had lunch at a Turkish/Mediterranean restaurant. My sole complaint: the food was too filling, so I'd better order less next time. Drove home for the afternoon. Flute choir was at 6 in the evening, so I hurried over to Canada College, and managed to register before class began. Even though I've seen bits of most of the music before, I think we'll have a good quarter.
August 30 My back is feeling a bit better. Spent the morning trying to find a good method to sync my main machine with Redhat's rawhide (bleeding edge distro). Found a fairly successful method, namely ftpcopy. Then experimented with gnupg. Decided that using a 4096bit RSA encryption on my key was a bit unnecessary, especially since my ostensible motivation was to use gnupg to sign my e-mails. Also realized that 65 character passwords are great in principle, but a bit annoying in practice. I've a good memory, but not that good. In the afternoon, continued to try to clear the brush and weeds that have interspersed themselves in the rosebushes around the house, and watered the said rosebushes for the first time in many moons. In the evening, I went over with a friend to see "1 Hour Photo," a new Robin Williams movie. My advice: don't bother. Save the 9 bucks...
August 31 Got up fairly late in the morning, and decided to practice flute for a while. Decided that I sound much better when I practice consistently, for a few days in a row. We'll see if this opinion lasts. The bike ride of the morning was repeatedly delayed, as first my bike's tires needed to be refilled with air, then the seat was too low (yeah, I haven't ridden in a bit), then I couldn't remember the lock's combination, and so forth. Even the rear-mounted rack on the back had a problem: one of the two screws holding it had fallen out and replacements were in short supply. Had a nice bike ride up Purrisima road (a 16 mile loop) and stopped in town briefly to pick up a few odds and ends. Spent the afternoon starting a plan for backpacking next weekend, and (re)discovered the fact that the odds of getting to Mt. Whitney this year are slightly less than nil (damn permits!). Used my new scheme to update rawhide to break Konqueror rather badly, and decided to try and restore my machine to a stock RedHat 7.3 installation. Problem is how to do this without rebooting. Answer: very slowly, one package at a time. Argh!