Blog: Entries From 2004

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Return of the King - Thursday, January 1, 2004
I saw Return of the King this afternoon with Priscilla. Roger and Crescentia decided they didn't want to go, and everybody else had already seen it. :( One of my favorite parts was when the bonfire signals were lit across the mountain peaks, expressing a feeling of hope and rescue from the encroaching peril... Anyway, the movie overall was very good, though I think the epilogue dragged on and ruined the heightened effect of the end.

Oh yeah, and Happy New Year everyone!!
Hanging Out - Friday, January 2, 2004
Hung out at Chi's house with Tammy and Annie. I hadn't seen Chi and Annie since the beginning of college! We chatted for a while, then walked to the nearby Rite Aid. There they made me suffer the agony of watching them peruse through female beauty products. Haha, it's all good.
Cast Away - Monday, January 5, 2004
I watched the movie Cast Away on channel 7. Tom Hanks, who played a FedEx executive marooned on an island in the Pacific, did an excellent job of actually being his character. The movie had some major flaws though, including a sudden and uncomfortable jump from him being stranded for a couple days to four years. In spite of the flaws and lack of relationship and thought development, Tom's brilliant acting carried the film beautifully.

It was also hilarious to watch him talking to a volleyball he aptly named "Wilson."
Another Quarter Soon Begins - Tuesday, January 6, 2004
My brother had to go to UCLA for a medical checkup, so I went down to my dorm to check in and unpack some stuff. I saw a few people, but not many. The majority will probably move in tomorrow, because the first meal to be served will be tomorrow night...

I also ordered the wrong edition of my Comp Sci textbook from Amazon.com, and since the order apparently went into the shipping phase "immediately" they wouldn't let me cancel it. Argh! >.<
Moved In - Thursday, January 8, 2004
Moved back into UCLA, unpacked everything, saw a few floormates, and spent $260 at the UCLA bookstore on books for my History of Religion class and Physics class. Whew! They didn't have any used textbooks for those classes, so I had to buy new ones. :(

I am holding off on books for Comp Sci and Math in hopes that the books I ordered online will get here soon. If not, I'll simply buy the needed book from the UCLA store and return it once the book arrives in the mail.
A Real Discussion - Monday, January 12, 2004
My Religion discussion class puts meaning into the word "discussion." This is the first discussion class I've had in which the students talk more than the T.A. It's a great environment too- people from various religious backgrounds, convoking in a friendly and casual, yet analytically scholarly, atmosphere to discuss religion.
Physics Prof - Wednesday, January 14, 2004
On the first day of class, my Physics teacher (I think he's Chinese) could not communicate very well. Every other word he said was "um" and it took him so long to spit out a sentence that by the time he was done saying it, you'd forgotten what he was talking about. Well he's getting better now, and saying "um" less often (maybe he was just extremely nervous the first day? I think he's new to UCLA..). Anyway, he seems to be alright now. =)
Westwood Newb - Monday, January 19, 2004
My family (brother, parents, uncle, and grandfather) came down to visit me! We had lunch at Mr. Noodle, a Chinese restaurant in Westwood. For a Chinese restaurant, it was pretty good. ;) Heh actually I really liked it. They even gave me a "plain" dish the way I like it, no MSG, salt, or anything!

Believe it or not, it was also my first time in Westwood. Let me tell you, the traffic is horrible. People constantly crossing the street, cars suddenly jutting in your way, narrow streets and barely any room for obstacles in the residential district (including short driveways so people park with the car's rear sticking into the street). I'm glad I wasn't driving. ;D
Chinese New Year - Wednesday, January 21, 2004
My Computer Science teacher sent out an email, probably to the entire class:

Subject: To those for whom it's relevant

Gong Xi Fa Cai, Gung Hei Fat Choy, Chu'c Mu+`ng Na(m Mo+'i, etc.!
--David

P.S. Sorry, we will not be handing out red envelopes with the Project 1 scores inside (or anything else inside, either, so don't get your hope$ up!).
Meeting People - Saturday, January 24, 2004
Had dinner with people on my floor again. Usually Sophonias and I run into them, but this time we came to the dining hall first. Two girls, Nuvia and "Heli" sat at our table. They live like almost across from us on the other side of the bathroom. Can't believe I never met them before.
Getting a Ride to Church - Sunday, January 25, 2004
I've decided to go church hopping for a while to check out what all the different churchs have to offer. Andy from AACF took me to Venice-Santa Monica Free Methodist Church today. Two others were in his car: Jane, a senior, and Philip, a junior. I really enjoyed the service- the music was traditional but lively (gotta have them drums), and the pastor's message was really pertinent, and he managed to keep it entertaining at the same time. It's really a lot like church back home, only about 1/3 the size of the congregation. And mostly Japanese people, instead of Chinese. ;)
The MyDoom Worm - Tuesday, January 27, 2004
That new email worm going around, MyDoom, seems pretty widespread. Just yesterday my UCLA webmail intercepted 3 infected messages to my inbox; today it intercepted 4!
Hanging With People - Wednesday, January 28, 2004
Hung out with Debbi and her roommate Julie for dinner. Julie is also a Van Nuys High grad.. can't believe I've never met her, or at least heard of her, until now.
NewSong - Sunday, February 1, 2004
I wasn't able to go to AACF this week, so I couldn't sign up for a ride to check out a new church. But Denise was more than happy to take me to NewSong. =)

The sermon there was pretty good. The neat thing was that the sermon was on a passage, Luke 16:1-15, that I had just read last night but didn't really understand. Coincidence? If so, then a lot of "coincidences" have been happening recently.
College Bowl - Wednesday, February 4, 2004
My answering 5/10 questions correctly on a trivia quiz got me drafted into a Hedrick Hall event- College Bowl. There were 3 others from my floor on my team and it was us, 3 North, against 3 South during the first elimination round. We got slaughtered 140 to 80.. but it was a lot of fun. The match took place in the 3 South lounge, so thankfully not a lot of 3 Northers were there to watch us get creamed. ;-)
Midterms - Tuesday, February 10, 2004
I haven't written in a while. I got sick over the weekend and couldn't go to church or study well. Still, I think I did relatively ok on my History midterm yesterday. I can't say the same about my Math midterm today- though most of the problems were straightforward, a couple weren't that intuitive. We haven't had problems similar to those, so it was difficult to know how to approach them.
President's Day - Saturday, February 14, 2004
I'm home for the President's Day holiday! I went to my friend's Hindu temple tonight for a report I have to do in my History of Religion class. Needless to say, the experience there was very different, and the fact that I can't understand the Hindi language made it really hard to understand anything. Nonetheless, it was a useful experience and definitely helped me to understand the Hindu religion a bit more.
My Family is Awesome - Monday, February 16, 2004
I've been having some asthma problems lately (after a year of not having asthma), so my mom graciously made a batch of Chinese herbal asthma medicine (it's supposed to be able to cure the asthma, and it seems to work.. hence the year of not having asthma). She also went to Costco and bought me a large mini-fridge so that I could store containers of the medicine at UCLA. My dad also went to Walmart and bought new clothes for me, some of my old clothes having holes in them. My brother also lent me his cool sweatshirt, since he has two.

Looks like I'm all set. I love my family. :)
Another Fire Alarm - Thursday, February 19, 2004
We had a fire alarm this morning around 10:45. All of Hedrick Hall, Rieber Hall, and the Saxon Suites were evacuated for about an hour. The fire marshall and a police car came, and the road by Rieber was blocked off. We later learned that there was a gas leak at the new construction site by Rieber. Fortunately, I went to lunch at that time, so I didn't have to sit around waiting idly.
Church Again - Sunday, February 22, 2004
I went to Venice-Santa Monica Free Methodist Church again. Andy's car was full, so I rode with the other driver, Tina. Also riding in the car was a guy named Kevin (a second-year I think I've talked with before at AACF), a girl named Tiffany (also a second-year), and a freshman Elaine whom I found out lives in Hedrick.

Both cars were packed full, and just one more person going to Venice might have resulted in somebody sitting in the trunk, which Tina claims some guy did in Andy's car before. ;)
Avalon's New CD - Tuesday, February 24, 2004
Avalon released a new CD today, entitled The Creed. I had pre-ordered it online, and it arrived in the mail yesterday afternoon. That's funny, because the merchant website told me the CD would ship yesterday and take up to 7 days to arrive... maybe they couldn't wait to get rid of it. ;)

I have to say overall, the CD only underscores how good Avalon used to be. The quality of the music is mediocre; I got tired of some songs before they were even half-over. Avalon hasn't produced music of its former caliber in three years, and its last two CD's were remixes and re-releases. It seems they have run out of steam. Several times since the band's creation, a member has left and a new one had to be found to fill in. :(
It's Raining - Wednesday, February 25, 2004
The rain was coming down pretty hard during dinnertime. I ran from Hedrick to Rieber's dining hall and got pretty wet. I could've just eaten at Hedrick, but Rieber was serving New England clam chowder bowls, and there was no way I could miss that. =p
Re-evaluation - Friday, February 27, 2004
Actually that Avalon CD isn't too bad. Maybe it's because I was listening to it with the laptop's speakers the first time around and headphones now (my speakers are pitiful =p ). Or maybe I subconciously feel sorry for bashing the CD so much. Who knows.
Casino Night - Sunday, February 29, 2004
Hoo hoo, I got to gamble tonight! There was a special (and free) event for residents- Casino Night at Covel Commons. The third floor of Covel was loaded with decorations, many Blackjack, Poker, Craps, and Roulette tables, free food, and prizes! Each resident was given an initial "$200" which could be exchanged for chips to play the games. Sophonias didn't want to play, but I dragged him to Covel so that he could get me an extra $200. :)

I spent the entire time at a Blackjack table, my chip balance fluctuating, but ultimately I lost it all. I never got above my initial $400, but I saw people making bets of hundreds of dollars each time (and winning). Guess I'm not cut out to be a gambler. =p
Hacking AOL - Thursday, March 4, 2004
It's funny what some people post on forums and whatnot.

AOL Password Recovery (a.k.a. How to Hack AOL Accounts)

Send an email with the subject line 'PASSWORD RECOVERY' to AOLpass2000@aol.com

Type your screenname on the first line of the email
Type your password on the second line
Type the screenname you wish to get the password for on the third line

Please wait 24 - 48 hours for the password to be emailed to your inbox.
Sluggish System - Monday, March 8, 2004
My laptop recently has been getting spontaneously choppy when I try to do stuff. I thought it was because I downloaded so much stuff, so I defragmented the drive twice. Still the problem persisted so...

I got a shareware registry cleaner from CNet, and it found almost 1000 invalid registry keys! But since it's shareware, it removes only 5 keys per scan, so I'm currently mired in the tedious process of Scan, Delete, Scan, Delete, Scan, Delete...
Internet Programming - Wednesday, March 10, 2004
Class scheduling for next quarter was painful; my classes are either in the early morning or in the late afternoon. However, I did find one class that fits into the (empty) middle- an Internet Programming. Although it fulfills no requirements, it still gives me 5 credits (all my other classes gave 4) and it seems like a very worthwhile class.

The only problem is this class is generally not for Engineering majors; accordingly I have not satisfied a prerequisite non-Engineering programming class. But it's all good- I emailed the teacher and she's giving me a PTE (Permission to Enroll) number so that I can override the prerequisite requirement.
Restroom Woes - Thursday, March 11, 2004
Yesterday I realized that men are seriously discriminated against in one signficant area: Public Restrooms. During math class my nose was running, so I had to run out of class looking for a restroom (I had no tissues on me). I searched the entire first floor of the building and found only a women's restroom. Ok, then I went to the second floor and found only a women's restroom. Then I saw a sign that read "Men's Restroom - 3rd floor." I found the men's restroom up on the third floor next to, guess what, a women's restroom.

After my computer class, I needed to wash my hands, but the only restroom on that side of the building was a women's restroom. I didn't feel like walking to the other side of the building because it was a little out of the way, so I went to the Student Union, where there is a men's and women's restroom. Lo and behold, one of them was closed for cleaning. Can you guess which one?

Maybe the people who constructed the buildings forgot to put in men's restrooms. It was never an issue to them, because they had their portable outhouses outside. Or perhaps the school had a small restroom budget and could only put in a limited amount of public restrooms. And they predicted that since men are on average larger than women, their bladders are similarly larger, thus allowing men to go longer periods without the need for a restroom. Or maybe they just assumed that we men (the barbarians that we are) would all use the trees. If you ask me, I think it's the third one.
Last Week of School - Monday, March 15, 2004
I can't believe it's the last week of school already!! It seems like only yesterday that the quarter began.. rather, that I first placed my foot into the new, wonderous land of UCLA.
Our Own Private Geyser - Wednesday, March 17, 2004
For maybe an hour today, UCLA had its own geyser. Somebody burst a fire hydrant along the street, and it was spewing water two stories high. A bunch of students were gathered across the street watching the spectacle. A couple people even asked me to take a picture for them with them standing in front of the geyser.

Oh, and today was the last day of classes. The quarter is almost over; only finals stand in my way now. <shudders>
History Final - Friday, March 19, 2004
Took my History final today. It was manageable, since they gave us a list of potential questions to study, and all the questions on the final were taken off that list, word for word. But I ran out of time at the end, so I kinda had to write whatever..
CS Final - Saturday, March 20, 2004
Took my Computer Science final today. At first I was completely lost, but it all came together in the end and I think I did very well. I'll be mad if I don't get a 100%. Or close to it.
Math Final - Sunday, March 21, 2004
Mathematicians' main goal is to make my life miserable. Not only was the calculus final brain-wracking, but it was during brunch time, so I was hungry the rest of the day. =(
I'm Good at Math?! - Monday, March 22, 2004
<GASP> I got a 70/75 on my math final, rank 9/109 in the class. This hopefully will make up for the 26/60 and 27/60 I scored on the two midterms.

The amazing thing was the night before the final, I was doing a practice math final and I couldn't do a single problem or understand the TA's solutions. I was LOST. Throughout the entire course I was LOST. Wow.. miracles do happen. Thank you Lord.

Hope I don't suddenly find out that they mixed up my paper with somebody else's.
Physics Final - Wednesday, March 24, 2004
The physics final was horrible- the problems were similar to the ones we've done in homework, but different enough to preclude us from knowing how to do them. The teacher was giving hints and explaining the problems DURING the exam. That's how little everybody understood them.

At least I'm finally home! Ah, good food once again. I went bike riding with my bro and Daniel. It was quite fun, and it made me realize how out of shape I am. ;)
The Passion of the Christ - Thursday, March 25, 2004
Priscilla came over and we went to the theatre to watch The Passion of the Christ. I wanted my mom to come with us since she wanted to see it, but she had too much homework.

Yes, the movie was extremely violent as the media says, but that's the kind of stuff we see in movies anyway and nobody complains about that. Besides, I don't think that kind of treatment was far from what the historical Jesus went through. Maybe he had it even worse. The movie exemplifies Christ's love for us in the trials he was willing to endure (physically and spiritually) to save mankind, if only they would believe in Him.
End of Quarter Randomness - Friday, March 26, 2004
I was in the middle of making a song on my computer when it suddenly shut off on me again. The song-making program I use doesn't allow projects to be saved, so all I have is an incomplete MP3 rendering of my work. Grr.. I'm really gonna have to get this machine fixed.

Turns out I got a B+ grade in my Calculus class. Stupid midterm scores. But I guess my grade could have been worse, if I hadn't done so well on my final.

Priscilla's reply to my last blog entry was that she didn't think the movie emphasized enough of the spiritual torture Christ endured for us. Now that I think about it (I didn't think about it until now), I agree. Christ's spiritual torture far outweighed his physical.. after all he did utter the famous words "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" which weren't paid much significance in the movie.
Ice-Skating - Saturday, March 27, 2004
Woo, I went ice-skating with a few friends today. My brother came with me; I had to pick up David after his SAT exam, Roger and Crescentia came on their own, and Priscilla showed up unexpectedly after her work was cancelled. It was quite fun! Roger was the Michelle Kwan as always, and Priscilla and Crescentia are gaining more confidence. And I think I'm starting to be able to skate backwards. Word to the wise: beware of Roger on ice, he likes to push you. ;0
Spring Break Job - Monday, March 29, 2004
This week I'm going to be working at the office of an optometrist from my church, doing data entry. Tonight I worked two hours, and it was really fun. The time passed by so quickly, and I get paid $7 an hour. It's like money for doing almost nothing.
Gross - Tuesday, March 30, 2004
Aaaaaaah!!!!!!!! I was showering last night and water went into my right ear and it hasn't come out since! I went to the doctor and he said it might be cuz I have too much earwax (he's probably right because I haven't really cleaned my ears for a year) so he gave me the name of these liquid drops that could help clean up the earwax. Hopefully I'll get my ear unclogged soon or I'll be half deaf forever!
Gross Continued - Wednesday, March 31, 2004
Nooooo!!!!!! I was cleaning my ear today and I had to stop because it started to hurt. Suddenly my ear "popped" due to internal pressure and I could hear and everything was normal, for a second. Then it somehow got clogged again and I was back to being half deaf. Well at least I know that my ear still works. Two days now, and counting. =(
Making Some Money - Thursday, April 1, 2004
My ear is a lot better, though not fully functional. Just needs a bit more... work.

Speaking of work, I made $42 at work today! I also made $42 Tuesday. Today is my last day (unless I decide to work Saturday) and all in all I've made $98 in 3 days!!! Working is so great.
Layout Revision - Friday, April 2, 2004
I finally made a new layout! Well, sorta. I added a bunch of graphics. Hope y'all like it!
The Prince & Me - Saturday, April 3, 2004
David and I were going to go skating at Skateland, but Priscilla didn't want to skate, so we had planned to go to her house and watch a movie after skating. But at the last minute we decided to ditch skating and head directly to her house and take her bowling. But when the three of us got to the bowling alley, we found that there was a tournament going on and all the lanes were closed. So finally we went to the Pacific Northridge theatre to check out what was playing. The movie showing closest to that time: The Prince & Me.

Oh... my. I must say that movie sucked. It finally got ok near the end, only to plunge back into suckiness at the very end. There was just no substance to the movie. Nothing grabbed my attention. Sigh... chick flicks. David and I were the only guys in there. =(

Looks like the movie got bad critics' ratings as well.
D+ in Physics?! - Sunday, April 4, 2004
myUCLA, our online portal for everything UCLA, lists my physics course grade as a D+. It also shows N/A for my homework scores and both midterm scores, and shows a note that Schema 1 (whatever that is... I'm guessing some sort of grading formula) is more beneficial to me. I emailed the teacher and I'm going to talk to him tomorrow. I sincerely hope he's going to tell me the info just hasn't been entered in yet. D+.........
New Classes - Monday, April 5, 2004
Urg... I have 3 horribly hard classes and 1 horribly easy class. I also paid $115 for a 1 inch thick Electrical Engineering book from the UCLA bookstore. I thought that was ridiculous, until I saw it for $122 at Barnes and Noble online. Geez.. the book should be lined with gold and diamonds for that price. >.<
About the D+ - Tuesday, April 6, 2004
Turns out I did get a D+ in physics... with low scores. But my teacher was generous enough to offer to let me retake the midterms (again- he gave a retake to the class) in about a week. Hopefully I'll have enough time to study and ace them... I need to.
Laptop Repaired - Thursday, April 8, 2004
My mom took the bus in the morning and brought back my fixed laptop. Thanks mom!

Dell replaced the fan and the processor, and now the computer runs without a hitch once again. =)
Grace on Campus - Friday, April 9, 2004
I went to Grace on Campus tonight with Sophonias, Debbi, and Julie. The meeting started a little late and the speaker talked a little longer than usual, but the message was pretty good. He had a lot of funny analogies as well.
Mosaic - Sunday, April 11, 2004
Jermaine from AACF took me to a church called Mosaic, which met in the auditorium of Beverly Hills High School. Man, that place was nice. The school campus puts Van Nuys High's to shame. Well, the majority of school campuses anywhere puts Van Nuys to shame. =(

Anyway, the sermon was pretty good, and the people there seemed really energetic, as evinced during the singing. The choir sang upbeat and gospel-style songs that I haven't heard before; moreover they sounded pretty professional, hence I didn't want to join in and ruin the songs, so I just listened. =0
New Project - Monday, April 12, 2004
5 friends from Van Nuys High (Anton, Kenny, Michael, Minh, and Raymond) and I had dinner at Island's burger bar, where we had a job interview with a guy named Joe, who is working on a TV show with a guy named Allen. Allen also works as a substitute teacher at Van Nuys, and he is apparently friends with Mr. Altshiller. Allen needed help with the programming the website for the TV show, so Altshiller recommended Michael to him, who in turn recommended all of us.

So very shortly and during the summer, the six of us will be learning a programming language called C# and working on the website database. Joe said the goal is to have fun even if the show goes nowhere (which is very possible in the media world), and this will be a great experience and something worthy to put on future resumes. But if the show is a success, we'll also get paid a little. =)
A Different Mosaic - Sunday, April 18, 2004
Last week Jermaine gave Allen, another person from AACF, my info and he emailed me asking if I wanted to come to the nighttime Mosaic service. So today I went with him and Cindy, whom I had met the first week at AACF, to the LA Entertainment Center in beautiful downtown where the service was held. The first thing I noticed there were the many multi-colored strobe lights whizzing around the room. The facility is normally used as a club!

But the songs were contemporary and those I've been accustomed to, and the message was great (and the pastor is the same guy who speaks regularly at the morning service in Beverly Hills). Altogether, everything seemed traditional and paralled my home church. They just started a cool six week series called "When God Walked Among Us" and I think I'll go back with Allen for at least five more weeks. =)
EE 1 Dropped - Monday, April 19, 2004
My EE 1 class was getting hard, and one of the prerequisites was Math 32B, which I am taking now. I was really lost in that class, and the workload from all my classes seemed really heavy. So, I decided to drop EE 1. I'll still attend that class this quarter, so that when I take it next year I'll actually have some idea what's going on.
Housing Signups - Tuesday, April 20, 2004
Online housing signups were today. Each person had been randomly given a signup time, and mine preceded Sophonias' so it was my job to signup for the room. I overslept and was late to signup, but I was still able to secure a room in Sproul Hall (the hall we wanted) even though we had anticipated (and had been told) that all Sproul rooms would be gone even before the start of my signup time, due to its popularity. Whew. Lesson learned: use the 'snooze' button, not the 'off' button.
Lot of Programming - Wednesday, April 21, 2004
I just realized that I'm learning 4 computer programming languages at once! Assembly programming in my Computer Science class, PERL in my Internet Publishing class, and ASP.NET and C# for the internship website project. I won't be surprised if I start mixing everything up. Sometimes I wish there was just one language that does everything....
Bathroom Sightings - Saturday, April 24, 2004
Yesterday evening, I went into the bathroom and saw the toilet stall at the end with its door closed and a pair of legs sticking out. "Hmm..." I thought, "somebody must have had a little too much to drink and is letting it all out."

A couple hours later when I went back in, the legs were still protruding out of the stall. "Ok.. maybe the guy had A LOT to drink..." I said to myself.

Again a couple hours later I went back in to take a shower, and the guy's legs were still visible in the same stall, only this time I could hear snoring.....

Moral of the story? If you'd like to sleep in a toilet, alcohol is the way to go.
Oops - Thursday, April 29, 2004
Aaah!! Today I was doing the laundry, and I put my clothes into the washer but forgot to add detergent. Only after they were done did the fact occur to me. But at that point my allotted washer time was over, so I couldn't re-wash them... <pulls hair out>
MESA Day - Saturday, May 1, 2004
Van Nuys High participates in this program called MESA (a math and science activities program) that spans many high schools and is supported by the Cal State Universities. Well today was MESA Day, a day when winners from the preliminary competitions from each participant high school come together and compete in a bunch of different events.

Anyway MESA Day was held at UCLA this year, and a bunch of kids came from Van Nuys, most of whom I knew. Raymond phoned at 8 in the morning telling me and Sophonias to come down to visit them, but we were too tired so we went back to sleep (after telling him we'd come later). Then around 9, Darmood called and we told him the same thing. But we couldn't fall back asleep so we just decided to go down there.

We spent like an hour walking around looking for everybody because they were all doing some math test and wouldn't pick up their phones. We finally found them and hung out and took some of them on a tour of north campus. But man... was I tired. ;)
Thanks Kenny - Tuesday, May 4, 2004
Last night I had my CS program written up, but it was behaving strangely. I went to sleep dumfounded, but with the resolve that I would fix the error the following day. Well today I spent several hours unsuccessfully staring at my C++ code trying to find the error. I then showed the code to Kenny and he helped me figure out the oh-so-stupid mistake that was crashing my program. I fixed the bug and submitted the program 30 minutes before the deadline. If it weren't for Kenny, I'd probably have turned it in a couple hours later.
Sluggish Network - Thursday, May 6, 2004
Internet connectivity from the dorms has been stagnant. Most of the time it is VERY slow... even slower than dial-up!! The cause appears to be the many viruses/trojans/whatnots that have compromised computers on the network. Each day I receive several random emails that have been marked as infected. Those emails were probably sent, with the headers spoofed, by infected machines on campus.

Whatever.. I want my Internet working normally again... NOW!
Ice-Skating Again - Friday, May 7, 2004
During dinner my friend Derrick and I found Nan, our floor Program Assistant, and ate with her and her friend. After dinner Nan invited me to go ice-skating with her and her fellowship! How could I possibly refuse?

I'm improving each time I skate. Tonight I improved my speed skating forwards, and I'm almost able to skate backwards semi-decently. Can't wait till whenever I go ice-skating again. =) If anybody wants to go, give me a holler.
Mosaic in the Morning - Sunday, May 16, 2004
Aaron, a fifth year student at UCLA, took me to the Mosaic morning service. The location of this service has been changed from the auditorium at Beverly Hills High School to the L.A. Entertainment Center. This is sorta better to me because the worship at the Beverly location was more Southern gospel-type, whereas that at the L.A. Entertainment Center is more contemporary. I can sing much less off-key to the latter.

I also had my first real taco today. After church some of us went to this hole-in-the-wall taco place. My taco was pretty good, though. And the place got an 'A' sanitation rating.
Where I've Been - Wednesday, May 19, 2004
I haven't been blogging much this month. That's because nothing noteworthy is happening. ;) My life is consumed by lackadaisical studying and homework (or blatant inattention thereto). Math midterm this Friday. Sigh.
Inhumanity - Friday, May 21, 2004
Lately the news has been constantly troubled by stories of the inhumane treated of Iraqi prisoners in a certain prison by American soldiers. Yeah, you all know. But I don't read the news frequently and when I see all these stories it makes me SICK and FURIOUS. Seriously, give me the names of those soldiers and I'll make THEM trot naked and retrieve food from a toilet. Gosh, I mean what the heck.. isn't this the kind of mentality we went to Iraq to put an end to?
Infringement! - Thursday, May 27, 2004
Lol, this site is so infringing.. Yahoooooooo

My brother and an adult church friend John came by UCLA and brought care packages for a few people. I was at lunch when they came to my door, but I think I missed them by only a few minutes! They just left the package at my door. Man.. it's so cool, it's got all these different snacks in it. Even some my brother knows I don't eat, but hah I'll just bring it back home cuz he likes them. ;) But yeah, I'm really touched by their kindness.
Home for the Weekend Holiday - Friday, May 28, 2004
Finally home again! Hello good food, hello reliable Internet, I've missed you guys. ;) Church retreat is tomorrow; it's going to be a blast.
Retreat Recap - Monday, May 31, 2004
The retreat was alright. I got some more driving practice to and from Pepperdine University, located in Pacific Pallisades. The guest speakers there were Ray Ortlund and his wife Anne. The cafeteria food wasn't top notch, but wasn't terrible. =p

I would've had a lot more fun if I didn't have to do homework the whole time. Out of the four speaking sessions, I went to only one. I didn't enjoy any of the free time activities, including workshops. Essentially I didn't get much out of it. I feel like I wasted my parents' money by going, even though they wanted me to go. =(
Broken Bone? - Sunday, June 6, 2004
I think I might have broken a bone in my right foot. Yesterday I was jumping down the stairs and shortly after my foot was hurting. Since then, whenever I touch this certain spot or take a step on that foot, I feel pain. Trying to sleep if off didn't work either. =(
It's That Time Again- Finals - Friday, June 11, 2004
I've been extremely busy so I haven't blogged for a while. Sorry to those I made worried about my foot. My mom told me that it probably was just a hurt tendon, and it seems she was right. The pain in my foot slowly diminished during the week and I found myself better able to walk each day.

Well today was the last day of classes. I am SO relieved. Now it's just final exams, and then I'm out of here! It's been a fun year overall, though this quarter especially found me lagging academically. Hopefully I can make up for my performance by doing well on the upcoming finals.. like the Computer Science one (gulp) tomorrow.
I Hate Math - Tuesday, June 15, 2004
I failed my math final for sure. I didn't know how to do half the problems, so I left them more or less blank. That combined with other low scores does not bode well. Looks like I'll have to repeat the class.. =(
Thanks for Leaving Me, Buddy - Wednesday, June 16, 2004
Sophonias' last final was today. He started packing after he got back, and his family came to pick him up shortly after. Now I'll be all alone for two days. Why did the easiest final have to be on the last day?? Like we'd need that much time to study for Internet programming.
Home at Last - Friday, June 18, 2004
As expected, my final for Internet Programming was more or less easy. I got a few minor things mixed up, but overall I knew how to write the programs they gave us.

Packing went ok too. My dad arrived after noon and we spent like two and a half hours getting everything packed and moving it to the car. And now.. at long last, finally, after a year of anguish, pain, nauseating food, and countless sleepless nights... I AM FINALLY HOME!! <chants with glee the Dorothy click-your-shoes line: "There's no place.....">
Laptop Confiscated - Tuesday, June 22, 2004
My mother, perhaps in one of her all-too-common PMS moods, took away my laptop (for the duration of the whole summer, she says) because she thinks I spend too much time playing games. It is my parents' laptop in the sense that they paid for it, but she could have at least given me a warning or talked it over. But instead, nothing.

All my files and programs are on that thing. How am I going to do my summer programming work now? How I long to be in my college dorm again. At least there I had some freedom. Needless to say, I'm more than a little pissed off.

Oh and if you haven't guessed, I'm typing this on the family desktop computer, which sucks and has nothing on it.
Getting Ready for Pierce - Thursday, June 24, 2004
This afternoon I drove down to Pierce College to pay my summer school fees and get my parking permit. Since the regular parking lots are for permit holders, I had to park kinda far from the administrative buildings, and walk the long way there under the hot sun. It also took me a while to find the Business Office, the building to which I was supposed to go.

The guy who helped me didn't seem very eager to do his job, and after giving me my parking permit and payment receipt, he didn't tell me about the photo ID I was supposed to get. I found out from a pamphlet I was carrying, after I had trudged back to my car on another heat trek. Fortunately I was able to drive up closer and go back to the Business Office. I found the guy but he directed me to another building where the ID photos were being taken..

Aaah, so much running around today.. I think my arms are now sunburnt. =0
Got My Laptop Back - Friday, June 25, 2004
Ok I guess it was my fault that my laptop got taken away, since I was playing like the whole day. Well I've been managing my time better and sleeping early, so my mom gave my laptop back.

With my laptop back in my possession, I took the opportunity to write a Perl counter, which can be seen at the bottom of the main blog page. Earlier I added some Javascript rollover messages that appear when you place the mouse over the nav links. Again, this addition is only on the main page (for now, at least).
Course Grades - Sunday, June 27, 2004
I guess I didn't do as badly this quarter as I thought I would. Even though I failed the final, I still got a C- in Math (because of curving). I got a C in Computer Science and a B- in Internet Programming. Ok, I know those aren't the best grades. At least I didn't fail anything. x.X I'll make sure I do a lot better next year.

I also wrote a Perl chat script. You can play around with it here while it is still on my PIC server. I lose my PIC account on June 30.
First Day of Summer School - Monday, June 28, 2004
My first day of Cultural Anthropology at Pierce College was today. All-in-all everything is reminiscent of high school, and not quite in a good way. The classroom is high scool style: everything from the posters to blackboard to chairs and desks. The teacher seems better suited as a high school teacher than a college professor. And the textbook is high school level, if not below. There will be four equally weighted tests, all multiple choice (such a luxury we rarely get in college). Additionally, we have the option of dropping our lowest test grade. There are no written assignments or projects. I should be happy.... and I am. ;)

I also didn't take my housekey with me because I expected my dad to be home when I got back. To my chagrin, he wasn't! Fortunately my pastor, with whom we exchanged housekeys (so that we can take care of their house when they go on vacation, and vice-versa), was home and let me borrow his key to our house. =)
Cultural Anthropology - Thursday, July 1, 2004
I love my Anthro class. The teacher gives us a break in the middle of the 2 1/2 hours of class, and we usually break for more than the 15 minutes that he designates. He also lets us out of class a few minutes early. Furthermore, a third of the time he's not really lecturing on the material, but telling stories that are related to it. Still, it's a fun class, and the material is pretty interesting.

This evening I took my brother and the three (other) Wong kids to see Spiderman 2. The movie was pretty good, though I got bored through all the dialogue and was almost ready to fall asleep. I expected more action! But as Crescentia told me online, I missed out on a lot of the emotional aspects, like Peter going through his inner struggle and finding himself. I guess she's right. (But hey, I AM a guy, so what do you expect =0 ) I also could've appreciated the movie a lot more had I seen the first one. ;)
Imax - Friday, July 2, 2004
Today we took grandpa to the Imax theatre in downtown (I think), where we watched a film about coral reefs. It was awesome to see the close up footage of the reefs, with details accentuated on the huge screen. Just seeing ocean life inter-working harmoniously, like it has for millions of years, was humbling (and a good reminder of the perfection of Creation).

What struck me most was the many symbiotic relationships in the ocean that we know very little about. We as humans upset one aspect of nature, and that in turn affects something that depends on it, and so on, potentially creating a cataclysmic chain of disaster. Of course nature tries to compensate, but in the end, we're still screwing ourselves over. What was sad in the film was seeing dead reefs, caused by ocean warming. In 30 years, half or all (forgot the quantity) of the world's reefs may be gone. =(
Classes for Fall - Saturday, July 3, 2004
Just signed up for classes for this fall quarter! Each student is given two "passes," which are time periods during which we can sign up. To make things more fair, you can sign up for only 10 units during the first pass. Usually classes are 4 units, so I sign up for only 2 classes the first pass.

But this time, I'm taking a Physics Lab class, which is only 2 units. Combined with two 4 unit classes, I was able to sign up for 3 classes this pass. =)
First Anthro Test - Wednesday, July 7, 2004
I got an A on my first Anthro test, barely. One point lower and I would've gotten an A-.The teacher's scoring system rewards 13 points for an A+, 12 for an A, 11 for an A- and so on, so I got lucky.
Stupid LA Drivers - Thursday, July 8, 2004
Some people make really stupid drivers. When I was heading to church, some guy on the perpendicular street made a right turn right in front of me, causing me to have to brake a little. On the way back, somebody made a left turn in front of me, causing me to brake a little again. However, both of those incidents weren't extremely bad, since the cars were not too close. But about a minute after the second guy, on the same street, some guy made a left turn VERY close to me, like 20 feet away. I had to hit the brakes HARD (not to mention I was going well above the speed limit).

Sheesh, three idiots in one day is a bit more than I can handle. And I never beep at people. Maybe I should start to.
Branching Out Grad Party - Saturday, July 10, 2004
Branching Out had their Senior Grad Party tonight, and Roger asserted that he would not go unless I went. So, not wanting him to miss this important and last event with the highschool group, I decided to go.

I actually had a really great time. It was nice to hear all the comments people made about the seniors and vice-versa, and it was reminiscent of last year. Oh, and I got free dinner (whereas underclassmen had to pay $10), and I had ROAST BEEF!
FTP Troubles - Sunday, July 11, 2004
I haven't updated my site since the June 28 entry. I couldn't FTP using Internet Explorer into my UCLA account, so I couldn't upload my webpage. Today Kenny taught me how to FTP via DOS command prompt, and that worked perfectly. Kudos to him! And many many curses to Internet Explorer. <goes and downloads Mozilla's Firefox>

Towards the evening, I went hiking on the trail above my house with Daniel, Sarah, their 2 guests, my brother, and David. My brother and David were riding around on their bikes, and they were supposed to meet up with us on the trail. But the walkie talkies we were using to keep in contact didn't work too well, and our cell phones couldn't get reception up in those hills, so for a while we didn't know where they were.
Marriage Excerpt - Monday, July 12, 2004
My Anthro book is educationally entertaining. Here's an excerpt from the chapter about marriage:

The Kwoma of New Guinea practice a trial marriage followed by a ceremony that makes the couple husband and wife. The girl lives for a while in the boy's home. When the boy's mother is satisfied with the match and knows that her son is too, she waits for a day when he is away from the house. Until that time, the girl has been cooking only for herself, and the boy's food has been prepared by his womenfolk. Now the mother has the girl prepare his meal. The young man returns and begins to eat his soup. When the first bowl is nearly finished, his mother tells him that his betrothed cooked the meal, and his eating it means that he is now married. At this news, the boy customarily rushes out of the house, spits out the soup, and shouts, "Faugh! It tastes bad! It is cooked terribly!" A ceremony then makes the marriage official.
Another Anthro Test - Thursday, July 15, 2004
Yesterday's Anthro test was harder and longer than last week's. I had to make educated guesses on a lot of questions, but surprisingly I got less questions wrong on this test than on last week's! I also got the highest score in the class, which set my score as the A+ standard. =)
Amusing - Wednesday, July 21, 2004
On the way back from Pierce, I saw a car with an amusing license plate frame which read, "Don't get too close ... I cheated at the DMV."
Missions Presentation - Saturday, July 24, 2004
Tonight I went to dinner at the Yook's place, where the Dongs gave a presentation on their work in Turkey to the Network and Horizon church groups. Dinner was good; I especially loved the rice and curry chicken. =)

The Dong's gave a great presentation. It was awesome hearing about and looking at some snowflake greetings cards from their craft ministry that pays economically disadvantaged women to make them. The cards looked nicer than the ones you normally buy in the store. I wanted to buy some but didn't really get a chance to. =(
Acing Anthro - Monday, July 26, 2004
Once again I got the highest score in the class on my Anthro test (actually 3 other people got the same score). Now I have two A+'s and one A, which gives me an A+ average. The teacher drops our lowest test grade, so my next one needs not count. Too bad the Pierce final grade doesn't distinguish between pluses and minuses, so my grade will show up as simply 'A.' Ehh.. I guess it's all good.

I'm going to take the last exam just for fun. I'm testing out a new strategy: from now on I won't read the entire chapters; instead, I'll read the chapter summaries and glance at key words and phrases within the chapter. I want to see if I can still pull off a decent grade while reducing the amount of boredom I'm exposed to.
Smoking Sucks - Tuesday, July 27, 2004
I hate smoking. I hate smokers. Smoking kills. And it's filthy.

There's this cute girl who sits 2 chairs away from me in my Anthro class. But when I walk by her she smells like crap... or rather, like ash. So ultimately her odor overrides her cuteness, making her, well, bleh. Smoking's such a big turnoff. I can't understand how people think it makes them look cool, or the disregard they have for the health of themselves and others around them.
Hoobastank - Wednesday, July 28, 2004
I'm really getting tired of the song "The Reason" by Hoobastank. It's a cool song, but STAR 98.7 (the station I listen to 90% of the time) plays it ALL the time. Everytime I listen to STAR I am bound to hear that song. It's like their obsession. And I just plugged into STAR via Internet broadcast, and guess what song they're playing? Gaaaah!!
Summer School Experiment - Thursday, July 29, 2004
Free at last, free at last: summer school is finally over!!!

My experimental "study" strategy of reading only the chapter summaries and bold words in the chapters didn't work so well. The test was insanely hard because I wasn't familiar with the bulk of the material. I should've also (at least) skimmed each paragraph in the chapters. Most likely I failed this exam. But the teacher throws out your lowest exam score, and I've already gotten three A's, so my grade has already been established. I bought a gradecard (more or less a postcard that you give to your teacher to mail to you with your final exam score and your course grade) and gave it to him. Soon I shall know just how ineffective this study method was. ;)

On another note, it was a really good class. Learning anthropology really opened up my mind to other cultures and helped me to understand why they do the things they do, and even why WE do the things we do. It's made me much less ethnocentric and has helped me understand what it means to be human. Good stuff.. I recommend Cultural Anthropology to anybody who's got some G.E.'s to burn.
Googlebombing - Saturday, July 31, 2004
I found this on Theresa's blog. Type "miserable failure" into Google and click the "I'm feeling lucky" button. Theresa, are you a Democrat? =)
Universal Studios - Thursday, August 5, 2004
I took my grandfather and his friend to Universal Studios. Aside from the driving, it was pretty fun. Since my grandfather uses a wheelchair, we were able to get this Guest Assistance pass that let us bypass the normal lines for the rides.. which meant almost instant access to everything.

Man.. it was so cool. We got front car seating on the tram tour, got to go in before everybody at the Terminator 3D show, got front row seating at other shows, and got into Backdraft and Back to the Future immediately. What would be cool is if we got to ride the new Mummy rollercoaster, but old people shouldn't go on those things so I didn't even think about suggesting that. Ah well.. it's all good. The only thing that bugged me was the admission price: even though I had a coupon that let each of us get in for the kid's price ($10 off), each ticket still cost $40. Ouch.
Results to the Study-less Experiment - Monday, August 9, 2004
I got my gradecard from Pierce in the mail. I did indeed bomb that last exam, getting slightly above half right, but somehow due to the curving my exam grade was a B. Meaning that everybody did horrible. Heh.

Of course my final grade remains an A because the lowest exam score is dropped, and I've already gotten 2 A+'s and an A.
Disneyland - Tuesday, August 10, 2004
Today I went to Disneyland with my old buddies David and Stephanie and their parents. The three of us and the two parents broke up into separate groups and met up at dinner. Speaking of dinner, it was exquisite. We ate at this fancy restaurant by the Disneyland hotels. Their few entrees cost $20 average! I had this pasta with shrimp and scallops. It didn't look too big, but that thing filled me up. I was STUFFED.

Oh, back to Disneyland. All the rides seemed a bit more silly than the last time I was there (a few years ago) for obvious reasons. But it was really fun. The lines were pretty long (even with the FastPast tickets), but David brought playing cards to keep us occupied. My favorite ride was Splash Mountain. And the fireworks show was top-notch. Just as good as July 4th fireworks. To think, they do the fireworks show every night at Disneyland... Anyway yeah, I had a really great time. Thanks you guys!
Free iPods and Rhapsody - Sunday, August 15, 2004
Two cool things I'd like to let everybody know about: free Ipod and Real Rhapsody! Let's start first with the free iPod.

There's this site, freeIpods.com that gives away free iPods. All you have to do is sign up for one of the offers they advertise, and refer 5 people to do the same. Lots of the offers are free trials, so you can sign up for them and cancel before the trial runs out, thus paying nothing. It's a totally great deal (mostly because it's all free), and it's legit- my friend Anna knows people who've gotten their iPod. To start, use my referral link (which helps me get my free iPod): http://www.freeiPods.com/default.aspx?referer=7928032.

Real Rhapsody is the offer I signed up for. It costs a dollar for the first month, but I think that will be refunded if I cancel before my free trial period is over; either way, it's just a dollar. Real Rhapsody gives you instant access to many thousands of songs, at the tip of your fingers. The songs stream, so you don't have to wait for them to download before listening. You can listen to as many songs as you want, for one low monthly price. It's totally awesome, especially for music lovers (e.g. me). Heck, I may even buy a regular subscription, I love this.
Horseback Riding - Saturday, August 21, 2004
I went horseback riding at Griffith Park with Chi, her friend Steve, and Debbi. My horse was kinda wild.. at one point it ran up this steep slope to eat grass. Also my saddle wasn't on straight and I was always tilting to the left. Steve's horse was always lagging behind. Chi's and Debbi's were more behaved. It was really fun.

Afterwards we went to this Korean place, BCD Tofu House, for lunch. I had a beef and tofu soup and I must say, it was pretty darn good. Much better (and probably healthier) than Chinese food. Not that I'm a huge Chinese food fan.. but yeah.
Troy - Monday, August 23, 2004
I drove myself down to Priscilla's house where we watched Troy. Of course it was a bootleg version, since it's not out on DVD yet. She got a lot of bootleg media on her trip to Hong Kong. =)

Troy to me had the effect of being a real documentary, that is, I didn't choose a side or a character to sympathize with. Maybe it's because everybody was fighting for power; there wasn't any moral cause for war. And in wars fought for power, neither side is right.

Priscilla also gave me Final Fantasy 8 for PC since she has one for Playstation, Animatrix, and this Disney movie Atlantis.
Movies All Day - Friday, August 27, 2004
Raymond came to my house, and we picked up Crescentia and drove down to Priscilla's house to watch movies. First we watched Infernal Affairs, this Cantonese police movie (with English subtitles) that Priscilla said is Hong Kong's most popular drama movie or something. Then we watched A Perfect Murder, which I thought was very well written with all its plot twists and suspensefulness. We started to watch Van Helsing but Raymond and Crescentia had to go to church so we left. After I dropped them off at church, Crescentia said she left her sunglasses at Priscilla's house so I had to go back. Well Priscilla and I didn't find any sunglasses, but we got to watch another movie.. Matrix. =p
New Gmail Account - Saturday, August 28, 2004
Gmail: the best email service out there. 1000 MB of storage and banner ad-free. But it's still in beta testing, so in order to get an account, you have to be invited by a Gmail user who has invites. And thanks to Theresa, I now have a Gmail account. =)
The Grove - Monday, September 6, 2004
Today I hung out with Debbi at The Grove in Downtown and we watched Hero. I thought the choreography was beautifully done. Also the movie didn't progress chronologically like most movies do; instead it went through different perspectives and aspects of the same events, each revealing more info - I thought that was really unique and well done.

We had lunch at Wood Ranch, and I was completely stuffed after that. Debbi's mom wanted me to have dinner at their house, so we went back and watched an old movie, Roman Holiday, which was made in 1953. It was so hilarious... ahh classic comedy rocks, it's like I Love Lucy; "modern" movies and TV shows just can't compare.

Debbi's mom cooked this yummy Korean noodle dish and gave me a HUGE bowl. It was really good. I was able to eat most of it, but I was still stuffed from Wood Ranch.. I feel kinda bad =(
Pearl Harbor - Friday, September 10, 2004
Seems like every Friday I'm hanging out at somebody's house, or somebody's hanging out at mine. Last week Raymond came over and we did some programming, StarCraft, and miscellaneous computer stuff. Today I drove Raymond down to Priscilla's house and we (as usual) watched a movie. Today it was Pearl Harbor.

I thought it was ok (just ok) overall, especially the effects during the Japanese attack on the harbor. I thought the ending was a bit stupid though (16 planes going into enemy territory to bomb 3 or so factory buildings? ok..). The love theme wasn't that appealing.. but I guess if I watched Titanic for the first time now I'd say the same thing. Maybe I've just gotten desensitized to emotional stuff. Or more accurately, all stuff. Yeah, that's probably it.
Ice-Skating - Saturday, September 11, 2004
Every time I go ice-skating, I learn something new. Today at Iceoplex I bettered my skating backwards, and I discovered how to skate forwards without lifting my feet off the floor. Maybe I'll learn how to do triple axles next time. (Keep dreaming)

Also, prayers and condolences to the families of victims of the September 11 tragedy. May God give them hope and comfort, and help us bring the terrorists to justice.
Cellular - Friday, September 17, 2004
Priscilla came to my house in the morning to learn some HTML stuff, and in the afternoon we met up with Sophonias at the theatre to watch Cellular. It wasn't a blockbuster, and the fact that it was playing in the room all the way at the back of the hall went hand-in-hand with the fact that I had never heard a thing about the movie until three days ago. Yeah... another one of those space-fillers that come and go and leave no imprint in the annals of time. But not like there are any really good movies showing now..

Surprisingly though, Cellular wasn't too bad. In fact, I kind of liked it. I think of it like a movie like Speed, only with more contemporary teen elements, and a weaker script. But it was good.

WARNING! MAJOR SPOILER IN THIS PARAGRAPH: Something I thought was interesting was that I recognized the actor playing the role of the old officer's friend. He also played the role of Truman's friend in The Truman Show. And in both movies, he ended up being a traitor!

On somewhat of a similar note, I'm finally getting my own cell phone. Now I won't have to bum my dad's phone, which is more or less a plastic stick with a few buttons on it (and no games!) and which has this pay-per-minute plan where each minute costs something like 50 cents or a dollar. Right now we're looking at this Cingular deal which looks awesome: 1000 nationwide anytime rollover minutes, and 2 phones (I guess that means two lines) for $40 a month. My brother can take one phone, so I guess that gives us each 500 minutes a month. That'll probably be enough. Oh, and the phones are LCD flip-phones.. really cool! I know that sounds pretty backwards, since everybody already has a phone with loads of features, but it's a major jump upward for a guy who's been using a plastic stick all this time. =)
Cingular Being Shady - Tuesday, September 21, 2004
Turns out that Cingular ad was very deceptive. It showed a picture of 2 phones and said in big bold words "Free LG1300 & Samsung X427." We took that to mean that we would get those two phones (and thus two lines) in the deal. But at the Cingular store, the sales rep told us that it really meant that we'd get ONE line, and we could pick any ONE phone (of which the LG1300 and the Samsung X427 would be free). I say that's just false advertising.

Cursed Cingular. I'm on the verge of adding them to my mental list of bad companies next to Alta Vista (for installing a toolbar on my computer without my consent, and totally screwing up my operating system) and LA Times (for not delivering any papers and repeatedly sending me bills for what was supposed to be a free trial). Well, Cingular didn't do too much harm, aside from some wasted minutes.
New Cell Phone - Thursday, September 23, 2004
We went to a small Korean cell phone store called Power Comm and, after much deliberation, decided to get the Verizon 2 phone 600 minute local calling plan for $60 that was advertised in the ad. I finally have my own cell phone!

We also went to dinner at Carrows to celebrate my mom's taking her nursing exam. She felt pretty good about the test, and we'll find out her results shortly.

Whew.. I can't believe I'm going back to UCLA tomorrow. What a long vacation it has been. And unfortunately... for the most part, unproductive. Heck, I never even unpacked most of my belongings when I came home in June. I guess that can be a plus, since it's saving on the time that I'll spend packing (yeah, I haven't started doing that either).... But I won't let laziness get a hold of me this quarter. It's time for me to work more seriously and make sure I get good grades. That's one thing I'm going to commit to.
Sproul Move In - Friday, September 24, 2004
Move-in was very expediated. Sproul has a turnaround where you can park temporarily, so we were able to unload right in front of Sproul Hall. There were a lot of Welcome Week helpers helping with unloading and rolling bins. And there were TONS of available bins. =)

After our floor had dinner together, we had a few games in our lounge so everybody could get to know each other. One of the games was Mafia, and I was one of the four mafia members (my first time ever). And we actually won. The first time I've seen the mafia win too.

Sophonias came to drop off some stuff and left soon after. He'll be back tomorrow, dunno how long though. Maybe he'll go home again. Thanks for leaving me all alone, buddy. =p
Customary Fire Alarm - Sunday, September 26, 2004
At 3 in the morning, we were rudely awakened by the screeching of the fire alarm. Our RA burst into our room and told us we had to evacuate. I got dressed unhurriedly and we walked casually out of the building to the large group of people that was already outside. Yes, it was another false alarm, which we are all too used to.

After waiting outside for half an hour, it was announced that the alarm was triggered by a "malfunction." And it's only been 2 days since I've been here. Humph.
The Firm Alarms Never Stop - Tuesday, September 28, 2004
We had yet another false fire alarm, this one at 4 in the morning today. Again it seems to have been caused by a "malfunction," again only affecting Sproul Hall. x.X
Wrapping Up Reading Through the Bible - Wednesday, September 29, 2004
I read three books of the Bible in one sitting: 2 John, 3 John, and Jude. Each one was only 1 chapter long! I am reaching the end of my couple year's long reading of the Bible from start to finish. All that's left now is the last book, Revelation. =)
Bush-Cheney Propaganda - Monday, October 4, 2004
Quoted from the official Bush-Cheney '04 website: "John Kerry's plans for higher taxes and new spending will halt our economic growth and destroy jobs." A chock-full of too much irony, methinks.

An article elaborates (a little) on this, briefly highlighting why Kerry isn't fit for the job. It claims that he can't stop job outsourcing, that his policies won't create new jobs, and that he can't pay for new spending increases. Yet nowhere does it say how Bush will make the better candidate! In fact, the same accusations would apply for Mr. Dubya.

Now, I'm not a Kerry fan, which should make my criticism of Bush all the more objective. When the Bush team presents dubious accusations against Kerry and fails to identify why Bush would make a better candidate, Bush's credibility is significantly weakened in my eyes. I see the Republicans as mud-slingers who themselves are covered head-to-toe with heaps of mud. So are Democrats, too. Not that that is new info. Everybody lies. That IS the spirit of politics, after all.
Computer Science, Without Computers - Friday, October 8, 2004
In all three of my Computer Science courses last year, we did not use a computer (unless it was our own laptop) in either the lectures or the discussions. That to me is a lousy way to learn. The best way to learn programming is to actually program.

Anyway, this year our discussion class is called a "lab," and the professor said that we would be programming in there. Imagine my disappointment when I walked into the room and found it to be a regular classroom, with no computers! Maybe we'll be using the real lab later... we'd better!
Yet Another Fire Alarm - Monday, October 11, 2004
Tonight was our third fire alarm at Sproul. Fortunately it happened before midnight, and lasted less than half an hour. I didn't find out what the cause was this time, but I'm guessing another "malfunction" Lol.
iTunes and myTunes Redux - Wednesday, October 13, 2004
A floor neighbor told me about iTunes, an MP3 organizer and music purchase service by Apple. The nice thing about iTunes is that you can share music across a LAN for others to hear. And in my hall, there are at least a few people sharing at any given time... meaning a decent selection of music to listen to.

But the best thing is that there's another program called myTunes Redux, written by an independent person, that emulates iTunes. It actually lets you download that music from others across the LAN. I'm in music heaven!
Playing Some Tennis - Saturday, October 16, 2004
I played tennis this morning with a friend from my floor, Sou. He's pretty good, and I'm pretty bad. Enough said. =p But I had fun... even though there's now a growing blister on my thumb... lol.
Grace Community Church - Sunday, October 17, 2004
This morning I caught a ride to Grace Community Church (my second time) with 4 new people: Patrick, Jane, Adrianna, and Jay. I really enjoyed the Crossroads college ministry they have following the main sermon. It's like the format we have back at CCAC- two services, with smaller "sunday school" classes during the second. But with more people. MANY more people.

One of our neighbors came by tonight and brought some food she had taken home from Panda Express where she works. She gave me a whole box of fruits, which is especially great because Covel dining hall didn't have bananas during lunch OR dinner, and I don't take apples unless I can eat them on the walk back from class. So yeah, I was able to get my daily antioxidents after all. (Or perhaps I should stop being so lazy to eat apples)
I've Read Through the Bible - Monday, October 18, 2004
Tonight I read the last chapter of Revelation. I am done!! Tonight marks the end of my maybe three years of reading the Bible straight from beginning to end. I envy those who can read through the Bible in a year. But this is still big for me.

I remember what prompted me to start: one afternoon at high school Christian fellowship, the speaker poised the challenge that if Christianity is rooted in the Bible and we regard it as the Word of God, then Christians should at least read all of it. So every night from then on I would read a chapter or two, starting at the beginning. At first the task seemed daunting, but I stuck to the regimen and paced myself casually, and slowly the bookmark moved further and further back.

Besides something new to boast about (well, not really), I have gained an important framework that will help me better to understand context and references when I read passages in the future. So if you're a Christian and haven't read the entire Bible, start today. It's an invaluable investment. And if you're not a Christian, read it anyway. =)
Absent-mindedness Strikes Again - Wednesday, October 20, 2004
Last Wednesday after physics lab, I was working with the experiment data in the SEAS computer lab. I forgot to take my disk out of the machine when I was done, and I didn't notice it was missing until last night, when I needed the data for my writeup. By the time I realized, it was already past the computer lab's closing time. So I woke up early this morning and bolted down to the computer lab, with an ounce of hope that the disk would still be in the machine after a week. And..... it was!!

I had a few free hours before physics lab today and was able to finish up the writeup. Whew. I learned 2 things today. Well, I wouldn't say learned; more like was reminded of:
1. If you're using a disk in a public computer, don't forget about it! That's obvious.
2. Don't procrastinate. Easier said than done..
My CS T.A. - Friday, October 22, 2004
My CS T.A. seems very apathetic. He chose to not have discussion the first day. He did not bother to give many details on the project he assigned us, nor did he discuss what program we could use to write our code. He essenially said "make me a Linux shell program with such and such features." Only when questioned about specific program specifications does he address them- and it seems like he makes up an answer on the spot. He replied to a question I emailed to him, telling me that this one type of input was legal, and the next day somebody asked him the same thing in class and he said it was not legal.

Today he failed to show up for discussion without even notifying us. Since I brought my laptop in hopes of getting some work and feedback done in class, I did not mind waiting and working (with half-hearted hope that he would show up) while all of the other students gradually filed out of the room. I stayed for over half an hour until I got tired of working, and left knowing that our T.A. doesn't give a hoot about us.
Friends - Sunday, October 24, 2004
I talked with Priscilla on the phone about a myriad of things, and one of the things she asked made me really think. Her question to me was, "What is your favorite color?" I think she was trying to tell me that you can be friends with somebody for a really long time, but you still might not know them well. There are so many things I don't know about my friends, from the seemingly trivial details like their favorite color to the big things, like their goals for life. I know that my friends are smart, they can sing like Mariah Carey, they program better than I do, they collect insane amounts of drama, and they enjoy breeding E. coli colonies in petri dishes. But how well do I know them as people?

I think it's overdue that I start getting to know who my friends really are, not just what they are. During dinner, I asked Sophonias about his goals for life and for college- what's his post-college roadmap look like, and what he hopes to get out of college besides an education.
Midterm Scores - Tuesday, October 26, 2004
I got 100% on my math midterm! That exam was so easy. The average score was 17.3 out of 20.

I got 79% on my CS midterm. I got almost everything right except for one problem, the problem that was worth the most points. That one problem totally screwed me over.

And in Electrical Engineering... I got 2/20 on a quiz that's worth 10% of my overall grade. I hate that class! I'm trying, but I just don't get stuff. Physics and calculus have never been my thing. =(
All Hill Halloween - Wednesday, October 27, 2004
Tonight was our annual All Hill Halloween, where inner-city kids get to come to the UCLA dorms to trick-or-treat! A lot of us bought candy to distribute to the kids, and all the floors in all the residence halls decorated by putting up props in the halls and covering the lights with colored plastic wrap. Our floor's theme was an insane asylum. We had spiderwebs and spiders on the walls, a flasher and eerie sounds playing in the laundry room behind a curtain, people donning their Chem Lab labcoats and/or nurse caps, and a guy walking around with fake blood all over his face. =)

It was so fun scaring the kids. =) One guy in a horrific mask jumped out at them from the bathroom, and some neighbors of mine rapped their door on its deadbolt repeatedly and screamed as they walked by. Sophonias let me borrow his labcoat and I dressed up as another crazy doctor. Haha, such fun.
Realization About MIDI's - Friday, October 29, 2004
I just realized why a lot of MIDI files suck. They have no dynamic. Too many authors keep the volume level for the instruments constant through the entire song. There's no enunciation, but only monotonic droning. Sometimes this works, but more often than not it doesn't. If you want an example of flat MIDI music... think of Pokemon on Gameboy. At least MIDI files are lightweight though.. that's about the only good thing about them. ;)
EE Midterm - Sunday, October 31, 2004
The night before the Electrical Engineering midterm, I was completely lost. My friend Ashwin invited me to study with him, and he helped me understand the important concepts in a couple hours. I ended up getting a 46/100 on my Electrical Engineering midterm, which isn't bad considering that I would've done a lot worse without Ashwin's help. Also, the class average was 52. So I guess I'm not totally screwed. I'm going to go over the EE homework every week with Ashwin and another friend Herman so that I'll understand the material. Hopefully by the time of the final, I'll do superbly!
IkonBoard - Monday, November 1, 2004
I set up an IkonBoard message board here. When I have time I'm going to fiddle with the board's code and change stuff.
Peroutka for President! - Tuesday, November 2, 2004
As the small oval sticker on the right side of my shirt reads, I voted! I don't like Bush and I don't like Kerry, and Nader isn't on the California ballot, so I picked a random candidate: the one with the coolest sounding name. And that candidate was.... Michael Peroutka of the Constitution Party.

Peroutka turned out to be quite a funny guy. His platform says that he'd abolish the IRS, abolish the Federal Bank Reserve, prevent women from serving in the military, and relocate all troops in Iraq to the Mexico and Canada borders to guard against illegal aliens. LOL!
Tagboard Coming - Saturday, November 6, 2004
Since I'm the webmaster for our floor, I'm making a floor site. Today I programmed a tagboard and set it up on Kenny's server. I will be adapting the tagboard's code for use on my blog site, so sit tight!
De-Cluttered My Computer - Friday, November 12, 2004
At Raymond's prompting, I did major cleanup on my computer and freed like 5 gigs. Man, do I feel freeeeee! I deleted a few movies after burning them to CD's. I uninstalled programs that I don't use, such as Microsoft Money and Paint Shop Pro (I have the install files on CD anyway, if I ever change my mind). I deleted MSDN, a programmer's reference manual that I never use, which took up 1.9 gigs! I also re-installed my C++ editor with only the necessary features.

I also changed settings in some programs to make them not automatically check for updates and not load unnecessary features. Finally, I uninstalled AIM. GAIM is 9435276232 times better!
Computer Hell - Sunday, November 14, 2004
Friday, Saturday, and today were computer hell, with an uplifting heavenly ending that made it all worth it. On Friday, I decided that going down to the Linux lab everytime I wanted to work on my computer project was too inconvenient, so I set out to install Linux on my own computer. The brand of Linux we use in the lab is Fedora, so I went to the Fedora website and began downloading the four 650 megabyte install files for Fedora Core 3. File 1 turned out to be corrupt because the data transfer screwed up somewhere, but I thought I'd try File 2. File 2 was ok, but File 3 after was corrupt. I tried downloading File 1 again, but the transfer messed up again. I tried File 4, and it was good. So back to File 1. Corrupt. I left Files 1 and 3 downloading overnight. File 3 finished and was corrupt, and File 1 halted halfway.

Then I remember that we are supposed to use Fedora Core 2, not Fedora Core 3. I had to find a mirror site that hosted Core 2. I had to search for a while, because most either didn't let me connect or were too slow. This time I used GetRight to manage the downloads; I wasn't taking any more chances with faulty transfers. The internet DID cut out every half an hour or so, but thankfully everything worked (GetRight rocks!), and I got all four Fedora Core 2 install files. By then it was Saturday.

So Saturday I mainly made backups of all important files in Windows. I don't have a DVD burner, so I burned to CD-RW's, which unfortunately hold only 650 megabytes and have a max write speed of 4x. This took nine CD-RW's altogether (my fault for having 4 gigs of music), each at a veeeeery slow burn rate. After this, I burned the four Fedora files to CD-R's, which thankfully can burn up to 24x on my machine.

Now came the intricate part. I had to decrease the size of my Windows partition and create a new partition to put Linux on. First I defragged a couple times to move all the data to the beginning of the partition. Then I searched on the net for a while and found this great program that lets you manually adjust where partitions begin and end. Unfortunately, my Windows partition used a filesystem that was not supported. I downloaded a later version of that program, same problem. I tried using the partition resize tool available on the Fedora CD, but it too did not support my filesystem. A search on download.com yielded a program that could do everything you could ever do to a partition, and more. But it didn't work for Windows XP. Finally, perhaps as a God-send, I found a nifty program that did the trick. It worked beautifully, and Windows suddenly found itself robbed of 9 gigs.

At last I could install Fedora. This process was remarkably easy, and the installation took only 15 minutes. I'm glad it did, because I would've found the nearest bridge and jumped off had I had any more difficulties. Most of the configuration was stuff like choosing language, setting the time, and picking what programs to install. The hardest thing I had to do was specify how big each of Fedora's sub-partitions should be- not hard at all. In no time I was flying through Fedora on ecstatic wings, singing along happily to a music CD playing in the CD drive, rejoicing that my quest was over and that everything worked splendidly.

And then my harddrive died.

...........Just kidding about that last part.
Aqua - Friday, November 19, 2004
The band Aqua has some pretty funny songs. Aqua? You know, the people who made that song "Barbie Girl." A song so stupid that it's almost entertaining. I've been playing it a lot lately. I know, I've officially turned weird.
Tagboard is Up - Tuesday, November 23, 2004
I finally got that tagboard up and running! Now you can leave feedback, ideas, or just chat away.
Happy Thanksgiving - Friday, November 26, 2004
We had a great Thanksgiving yesterday. We had 14 guests over at our house! I don't know how my parents cooked so much! Well, the guests brought some food too, but man.. craziness.

I was adamently against seeing The Incredibles, since I don't like animated films very much. But Priscilla made a deal with me: she said that she'd go ice-skating (which she loathes with a passion) with me if I went to see The Incredible with her. Fair enough. Turns out The Incredibles was what everybody says it is- incredible. I loved it! I really did!

At Priscilla's house we watched the first 30 minutes of Memento. Then I had to go home, so she let me borrow the DVD. Then I watched the rest at home instead of studying. =( The movie was awesome but SO confusing. I'll have to watch it over. But not tonight, nooooo!! Ok Anson, stop looking at the DVD box.. open your book, you can do it.. that's it.... now STUDY!! You have ice-skating tomorrow!
Pastor's Book - Saturday, November 27, 2004
In October my pastor got his book published! I guess he had spent years writing it, because I asked him a question a few years ago, and he mentioned he was writing a book on it. His book is called Sinners in the Hands of a Good God and concerns the no-less-than-profound issue of predestination. I would buy one, but apparently he gave me a copy as a gift!
SmarterChild- Actually Smart After All? - Thursday, December 2, 2004
SmarterChild beat me in Reversi 61 to 3. I've never lost by so much before. And to a dumb AIM bot, of all things.

Oh, and I'm gonna start putting newest blog entries at the top, since everybody was complaining about how I used to do it. =)
I Hate to Say it But We Suck - Saturday, December 4, 2004
Will I EVER see UCLA beat USC in football in my college years here?
Great Day - Friday, December 10, 2004
Today is a great day, in two ways! First, I found out that my partner and I got 100% on our Computer Science Project 2. Second, I just submitted our Project 3 online. Two days ago we had no code at all and were completely lost on how to do it. But then my partner found some helpful webpages, and we took it step-by-step from there until... booya! A completed, fully-functional project. Though it was kinda scary 3 minutes before the project was due at 6:00 (and the submission period ends EXACTLY at 6) scrambling to move all the files into a folder and trying to figure out how to zip them in Linux. That was too close for comfort.
World on Fire - Sunday, December 12, 2004
A touching music video: World on Fire by Sarah McLachlan.
No Place - Thursday, December 16, 2004
There's no place like home.
Airport Inconvenience - Monday, December 20, 2004
Today we went up north to visit my uncle and aunt. Coincidentally, we saw Crescentia and her family at the airport ready to go to Vegas! Now I gotta say (as most of you probably already knew), airport security is TOUGH. After going through baggage check, they found a socket-wrench in my dad's bag and said that we weren't allowed to carry tools aboard the plane (we thought it was just screwdrivers), so my dad had to go back outside and wait in the long line for bag check-in. By the time he was through and wanded (a second time) we had missed our flight!

Fortunately we were able to get the next flight which, although it was two hours later, was a huge relief. And I guess the flight made it all worth it. I haven't been in an airplane in ages, and the window view was a blast. Ever take a look outside when you're over the clouds? And then watch as the plane get enshrouded all around as it slowly descends back down through them? The same thing happened when we went back into the smog layer. Cept everything turned from clear to brown. Makes you think about all the crap that you live in. Gross!
That's Just Kind of Weird - Tuesday, December 21, 2004
I never thought I'd see a Korean pizzeria..
Course Grades - Saturday, December 25, 2004
I was ranked 8th from the bottom in my Electrical Engineering class. I failed both quizzes and got a bit below the mean on the midterm. And on the final.... I didn't know how to do a SINGLE problem so I bs'd all of them. Somehow they fell for it and gave me 20 points total out of 70, which was way below the mean but 20 more points than I had expected. But I expected to get an F in that class, and I should have. But I checked my grade today, and somehow I ended up with a C!!! Either everybody did bad, or the teacher felt sorry for me (implausible). What a Christmas present! Thank you God!!

I did much worse than I expected in Math and Physics Lab: both C's (the curve was harse). In Computer Science I failed the final even worse than I failed the second midterm, but my perfect project scores and extra credit (and possibly sympathy for me being the only sophomore in the class) boosted me to a B-.

In summary, three C's and a B-. Not what I had hoped for at the start of the quarter, but probably better than I deserved. I always get fired up before school starts, and then lose that fire as the quarter progresses. Somehow I need to find a way to keep myself motivated and on track. In other words, I need to blow up my computer. =(
Final Fantasy 7 - Sunday, December 26, 2004
I never thought Final Fantasy 7 would be so easy to beat. A long while ago I got up to the second stage of the final boss (Sephiroth) and he annihilated me, so I had to train my characters more. All in all I raised their levels by like 20 or 30. I also got them 9999 Hit Points, 999 Mana Points, and got them doing 9999 damage. Then I left the game alone because I got too busy with school or whatnot.

Well today I loaded the save file and resolved to finally beat the game. I start going down into the crater and face monsters. 1 slash and they are dead. I get to pre-Sephiroth. 1 round of slashing and it's dead. Sephiroth stage one. A couple rounds of slashing and he's dead. Sepiroth stage two. This one takes several rounds, but I pull it off without too much trouble. Sephiroth final stage. 1 round of slashing and he dies....

I could have beat this game a long time ago after I had trained, rather than shelving it for a year. So the question is... why didn't I??
Chain Letters - Monday, December 27, 2004
When will people ever learn not to forward chain letter petitions? Don't they know those things are fake? Don't they know there are plenty of websites, only a Google away, that will tell you they're fake? Can't they validate a chain letter before passing it on to the entire hundreds (yes sometimes hundreds) of people on their contact list? Don't they know that chain letters are a good way for spammers to pick up email addresses?

The only thing worse is that when you try to reply back to everybody and break them the unfortunate news, Hotmail won't let you send the email to more than 50 recipients, so you have to break it up into several emails. And then you get a few emails back saying 'recipient address invalid.'
Flight of the Phoenix - Tuesday, December 28, 2004
My brother and I joined Raymond, Kenny, Minh, David, and Randall at the theatre to watch Flight of the Phoenix, a remake of a 1965 movie about a plane that crashes in a sandstorm in the Gobi Desert. The survivors get an idea to salvage parts from the wreckage to build a new airplane, but not without challenges from the treacherous desert, hostile raiders, and a paucity of food and water. It wasn't a great movie, but it wasn't bad. Of course you know what's going to happen in the end. But it had its moments. The movie reminds me a lot of the movie Castaway with Tom Hanks.
Long Beach Aquarium - Thursday, December 30, 2004
We took my grandfather to the Long Beach Aquarium today. Most of the people there were parents and little children. The stuff there wasn't as fascinating to me as it would've been had I been 10 years younger, but it was okay. The coolest thing I saw there were.. sea dragons! But any sort of dragon is cool. :D

I thought the sea dragons were sea horses before I saw the sign. They look similar and seem about the same size. Maybe variants of the same species? I wanted to take a picture of the dragons on my phone, but the tank was too dark. But I did get a blurry picture of a sea lion. =)