Tag Archives: awesome

Deep Fry Everything

Last night we got together at Jim and Andria’s and had a “deep fry everything” party. It was at least twice as amazing as it sounds. Katie made a batter and we just kind of ran with it. We deep-fried avocados, which were pretty amazing. We stuffed some jalapenos with Daiya, but I didn’t get to a hold of one of those. We also deep-fried some of the standards, round tater things, onion rings, tofu (which fried better without the batter), and sweet potato fries. We had grand plans to make things before deep-frying them, like taquitos, but we just kind of went nuts with the deep fry everything instead.

Then we played a whole pile of Rock Band 3. After moving all of our songs onto one hard drive, it turned out that Katie and I had a total of 358 songs. That’s with all of our Rock Band 1, 2, and 3 songs, but that’s an unholy amount of songs. The plus side is that there was a little bit of something for pretty much everyone. The down side is “Paradise by the Dashboard Light”.

Capital City Biathlon

Yesterday I finished my first biathlon! It was a 3.1 mile run followed by a 15 mile bike ride. Leading up to it, I was mostly concerned with the run because I haven’t done much running in the last six months. I spent the last three weeks running three times a week to build up my endurance again. Katie and I did a casual bike ride last week and that was about all the bike training I did. I placed 86th out of 153. I finished the run in 26:36, spent about a minute in the transition area, and finished the bike ride at 53:55. Here are some pictures!
Finishin', finishin'!
That’s me crossing the finish line. It was chip timed, hence all the mats. I rode my mountain bike with commuter tires because a friend of mine was also in it and she only has a mountain bike and I didn’t want her to feel left out. I beat a lot of people on much more expensive bikes than mine, and I’m pretty sure I was the second person on a mountain bike to finish. The first was a 15 year old boy. I’m okay with that.
Finishers!
Here’s how I’m supposed to feel after I finished! You can’t tell but I’m giving a thumbs-up behind that water bottle.
Finishers!
Here’s how I actually felt. Sweaty, tired, hungry!
"Put your medal on so I can take a picture!"
And here’s Erika shoving a banana in my face.

The Google Laptop

I signed up to test Google’s Chrome OS as soon as I got a notification that it was open on my Chrome start page. I wasn’t expecting much to come out of it. I mean, why would Google send me a laptop? But I came back from an early class this morning to find a UPS truck blocking my driveway and then when I got inside I saw that he had dropped off a package for me! I was truly shocked to find it was a laptop! And even though it’s a test product, it didn’t come with a pile of paperwork and instructions. It came with one two-sided sheet. One side is for getting connected to the internet, the other side is some suggestions of things to try and simple usage instructions. But enough words, here are a bunch of poorly lit, blurry photos!

The Cr-48 in all it's glory! Note the huge touchpad.

The Cr-48 in all it’s glory! Note the huge touchpad.

A super-blurry photo of the search button, and you can see some of the browser buttons at the top!

A super-blurry photo of the search button, and you can see some of the browser buttons at the top!   

The log-on screen! That's an awful picture I took while I was getting changed this morning. The laptop has a built-in webcam and microphone!

The log-on screen! That’s an awful picture I took while I was getting changed this morning. The laptop has a built-in webcam and microphone!  

This is the start page. Unless you already had some pages open when you last shut it down, this is what it goes to after login! There is literally nowhere else to go, everything is contained within the browser.

This is the start page. Unless you already had some pages open when you last shut it down, this is what it goes to after login! There is literally nowhere else to go, everything is contained within the browser.

The only things in the system tray are a clock, your connection status icon, and a battery power indicator.

The only things in the system tray are a clock, your connection status icon, and a battery power indicator.  

The settings page is only slightly different from the settings page on the standalone browser but it's really just to accommodate a few essential system settings.

The settings page is only slightly different from the settings page on the standalone browser but it’s really just to accommodate a few essential system settings.

This thing comes with 100MB/month of Verizon 3G data for 2 years. FOR FREE.

This thing comes with 100MB/month of Verizon 3G data for 2 years. FOR FREE.  

Look familiar? Nothing really different here.

Look familiar? Nothing really different here.

Pretty much the same as the browser, except the account stuff.

Pretty much the same as the browser, except the account stuff.

The same scary stuff that the browser has. I've left it all turned on because I am actually interested in testing this thing and if my browsing habits help, then Google can have them.

The same scary stuff that the browser has. I’ve left it all turned on because I am actually interested in testing this thing and if my browsing habits help, then Google can have them.

Some simple account management and login security.

Some simple account management and login security.

Some of the pictures that didn’t come out were the actual laptop itself. It’s flat black, with no markings. No serial numbers, no giant Google logo, no nothing! There’s a couple of vents on the sides for heat, a VGA port, 1 USB port, a headphone jack, an SD card slot, a power receptacle, and that’s it. No disc drives and this thing is absolutely silent when it’s on. The battery is enormous but it’s also completely flat. I don’t know the dimensions of it but I’d hazard a guess that it’s a 12 inch screen and no more than an inch and a half thick.

I plan on taking it to school tomorrow to see how well it plays with the campus wireless VPN. Overall, really excited to have a new toy to play with!

Metro 2033

This game caught me by surprise. It didn’t get much hype and what it did get didn’t excite me. Crawling around in tunnels in the dark, who cares? Then I found out that the developers are the engineers who made S.T.A.L.K.E.R., which I loved. It got pretty positive reviews, with some complaints being about the difficulty and poor gunplay and dumb AI.

I’m pleased to report these complaints are mostly unfounded. Metro 2033 is a beautiful game with a strong narrative, even if Artyom’s motivations are somewhat unclear. I beat the game on normal difficulty without much trouble. The weapons in the game are no less responsive than those in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. I knew from the start that bullets were currency in the game, and that crappy bullets existed, but I didn’t figure out how to use those crappy bullets until halfway through the game. The crappy bullets really are crappy, being much louder, less powerful, and more inaccurate. It really makes you value those money bullets and forced me to decide when it was worth shooting my money away.

Around the halfway mark, there’s a vendor who will sell you either heavier armor or stealthier clothing. I had spent nearly all of my good bullets on a better gun, which was poor foresight on my behalf because guns are everywhere. I was duly punished for it though, as I was never offered the opportunity to buy a different armor again.

I got Metro 2033 on sale, and it’s one of those games in which I wish I had bought it on release. The game is short, but it’s really immersive. I hope 4A made enough to keep developing, because I’ll definitely get their next title the minute it comes out.