Saturday, July 15, 2006

Bits/Pieces

Hooray, the old model at the side of the frisbee, except he's been updated to look alot cooler. I gave him some pimp gloves, and made some little stripes to give him more of a megaman feel. I like this one the most so far, hooray for random photoshop fun.

It's been a while since I've written anything, I've meant to for a while but haven't gotten around to it. This week has been pretty good, things are on the up and up. Cross country has been going well, I ran every day this week minus today (saturday), but I still got a bit in. I know I ought to run saturdays, but that'll have to wait till next week to start, considering it's 10 minutes from Sunday. But either way, we did cross training in the pool on Friday, and that was super fun again. I'm a terrible terrible swimmer, but it's a good workout. I won't go into the gruesome details, but I definitely drank alot of that pool, and Hugie took a chunk out of my pinky when we were playing water basketball. We had some chicken fights for part of practice, people on our shoulders trying to knock the other guys off. Little clements was on my shoulders, and we were totally champions both times we fought. Despite the glory, my neck is extremely sore from it all, and that's sort of a downer. Moral of the story is, join the cross country team.

Hmm, that brings up another unfortunate point. There are no girls in our generation that run anymore. They've all sorta lapsed out of existence. Marissa used to, but she hasn't been to practice in ages, we can only assume she's broken both shins. Heather was coming, but then she went on vacation for a bunch of weeks, and now is playing softball/basketball. Whatsherface ran with us last year for a bit, but I never talked to her, and haven't seen her since. So, pretty much there aren't any girls in our generation that run, and that's a downer.

But things are still going great for the team. We're gonna be super. Kirt's got mad skills, Trevor's got mad skills, and me and santy are working on getting some mad skills. Once the season starts, we ought to have at least 3 runners that are competing, instead of just getting owned like last year. We won't be winning too many meets, but we're still gonna run our little hearts out. I'm really excited for it.

My life has become pretty simple these past couple weeks. It revolves around cross country, frisbee, sleep, family, and food. Every once in a while you can sprinkle a little warcraft in there, and if there's time maybe hanging out with a few people. But really, it goes back to those 5 basics. Most things I think about are directly linked to them.

I wake up in the mornings, and go do my crazy cross country workout of death. I'm almost starting to like waking up in the mornings, it's becoming alot easier for me. I never ever get to bed on time, so I end up with anywhere from 4 to 6 hours of sleep before I have to get up and go running. But, I go run on limited sleep, then come home and take a nap till sometime in the afternoon. I wake up, and forage for food. When my stomache is satisfied, I hang out with Andrew, or find some friends to talk to for a bit. This goes on for some time, until I start eating again, or running again, or hanging out with my whole family. I then go to sleep, and repeat the process.

Changes occur every friday, and even some other days if circumstances are right. On Fridays, I wake up, go to practice, come home and sleep like any other day. The big difference happens once I wake up, when all my thoughts start to gravitate towards the coming frisbee game. Fridays exist for frisbee. I start getting ready at about 6, and don't get him till 11 or 12. When I eat food on fridays, I eat so I can play frisbee, not cause I'm hungry. When I take a nap on fridays, I nap for frisbee energy, not because I'm tired. Fridays are all about frisbee.

Every other day, well, they're about cross country, or sleep, or food, or family.

My brother got married yesterday. Score! I'm really happy for him, and I really like his wife. she's really cool. It was a great wedding, everything went really well. It was just a really good quality operation. Not too much junk going on, none of the unnecessary junk, just the important stuff. So yeah, way to go Nathan. I'm not distantly related to little peter, how cool is that? He's a cool kid.

Time to get down to business. It's bits and pieces time. I don't have any way to connect all this stuff. It's just gonna come out, and it's gonna be disjointed. Some of it will be good, some of it will be stupid. Score it.

Todays song is definitely "yellow" by coldplay. I have no idea what the songs about, I don't really get it, but I know I like it. It's a good song.

Over the past couple months, I've found myself becoming something that I hate. Alot of you know that I'm not a big fan of "popularity." I mean, I won't hate somebody because they're 'popular', but I think it's a stupid thing to strive for. I'm not the biggest fan of people that go farming for friends. In my world, friends sorta just happen. They're not something that you add to your list, and not something that you really go about 'asking' for. They just sorta happen, ya know.

So, I was running around the school way back when during track, and I said hi to at least 4 people in a minute as we ran past, and I classified every single one of them as a stallion. This was trouble. You see, I was one of the people that run around the halls saying hi to EVERYBODY and getting up in everybody's bidness. If I had been looking at myself from afar, I would have accused myself of friend farming.

Now, there's absolutely nothing wrong with saying hi to everybody, and thinking everybody is cool. I just sometimes get the feeling that some people are doing it just because they can, doing it to feel cool or something. I've got troubles with that one. So, I was quite alarmed when I found myself being a friend farmer.

However, after alot of self reflection, looking deep inside of myself, I have determined that I in fact am not a friend farmer. Here's my theory: By coincidence, 4 stallions happened to be in my path in the course of one minute. It wasn't that I was making everyone a stallion, it was that I ran in to 4 stallions.

See, that makes me sleep a little better inside. I have been worried about something that's come to be known as the stallion effect inside my head. You all know it, I call alot of people stallions. I throw the term around like candy. But, like supply and demand, if you flood the market, it's value goes down. So, has the value of being a stallion really dropped?

See, I don't believe that it has. I still mean it every time that I say it. Here we are, it's 2006, and the world is at a very unique place. It's never been here before. The way I see it, the world is the best it's ever been, and the worst it's ever been. It's going to keep continuing on this trend. So, we've got alot of dirtbags, that's for sure. We can pick them out all we want. We've got drugs, we've got gangs, we've got murders, we've got teen pregnancies up the wazoo. We've got divorce, we've got people trying to hit their spouses with trucks, we've got all sorts of crazy stuff going on. If one were to focus on the negatives, it's easy to see that everything sucks.

But, at the same time, I think we've got the greatest generation ever. We're some of the first people to live in a state where smoking in public buildings is illegal. Our lungs are better than anybody else's. We haven't been licking lead based paint for all of our childhoods. We haven't been smoking asbestos. Jaron said a while ago that he was mad that he never got to do stupid stuff, because now he can't tell his kids "when I was your age, I did stupid stuff...". The way I see it, we're the coolest because we don't have to do stupid stuff. We don't have to go bungie jumping with nothing but crisco smeared all over our legs to learn a lesson. We've got a bunch of all stars that the world has never seen before. We've got good kids, growing up all the time, ready to go do awesome things in the world.

Case in point: We've got Jared and Jose. Two raging stallions from the cross country team. Lots of you know Jared, I don't even know his last name. A few might know Jose, he's raging nonetheless. But really, these are good kids like we've never seen before. They're nice guys, smart guys, guys that are ready to work. They are gonna get out there and make a difference. They're not gonna be famous, but that's gonna be alright with them. Things are gonna be good, because for every couple drug problems, every couple teen pregnancies, we've got someone like Jared, or someone like Jose. We've got a bunch of good kids, just waiting to get out and do some good.

So say what you want about the world, I'm filled with hope for the future. You're not gonna keep this generation down. You couldn't stop us if you tried. Freedom is on the march, the real kind.

So, that was disjointed deal number one. The stallion effect. There are more people worthy of the stallion title today than ever before. Granted, there are more people around than ever before, but I think we've got higher quality people. It's no surprise that when I run around school I find so many stallions to greet. The world is getting a whole lot better, thanks to this generation. No more asbestos, no more lead paint. No more cold war. No more arms build up. No more smoking, no more crap. This generation is going to make it big. We got the power, we got the skills.

You guys may have read about the quadripalegic (not spelled right) guy that everyone's getting all excited about because the doctors put some stuff in his brain, and he's been able to move a cursor around a computer screen and do some other stuff with it. That's pretty good news, but it's not exactly break through. The concept of just using your brain to move the mouse around the computer screen is way old school, from what I understand they've been doing similar things in monkeys for a few years now.

Now, this is where things get a little hazy. I read up on this a couple years ago, and so I've got all these opinions and ideas that have formed since then based on the knowledge that I've got. So, we start to delve into the realm of me pretending I know a little more than I really do. But here goes, it's gonna be great.

Hmm. As far as I'm concerned, there's no reason why a very very rich man couldn't control his television with his mind. Technology has existed for a really long time that'll show brainwaves, or which parts of the brain are firing off electric signals, and all that jazz.

Now, the trouble with that, is your brain has tons and tons of nerves and neurons and other technical jargon that can send off signals. Back in the day, when this brain technology was just getting underway, we used to think that there was one specific signal for everything. A signal like "go eat a banana" would be totally unique from "Go eat a pineapple".

Now we can tell that it's alot more complex than that. It's like a big organ. Our old theory was that we had a ton of keys, and when you hit that special #E, you'd want a banana. There would be hundreds and hundreds of keys on this piano, but it was easy to find out which one was the banana key. Now, we can tell that this organ is a thousand stories high, with millions of rows of keys. It's a giant cylindrical tower, and your brain is standing in the middle, hitting keys left and right. But, instead of one key meaning "I want a banana", we know that when we want a banana, our brain is hitting thousands of keys at once, all a little differently. It's a symphony of signals getting thrown about, not just plucking off one solo note. This makes things alot more complicated. It's easy to pick out a note, but it's difficult to analyze a symphony in a second.

So, that's the analogy. When we want to go right, our brain sends that idea, that message, as it makes thousands of individual neurons send messages. All of these combined end up sending the go right message. It's not just one message, it's huge.

So, we've got that down. We've established that you can't just look at what keys are being played and figure out what we want. However, with these cool chips that they keep putting in people without limbs brains, they can find out a lot more keys that are being played. Back in the day they'd put a suction cup deal on your forehead and the sides of your head, and they'd pick up some stuff. But now we're listening closer, and hear even more notes. It's an even bigger symphony going on in that swirling organ. (PUN!)

Anyways. the catch is, if you keep looking at all the notes that are getting fired off, you start to figure out the jist of which one is go right. Then, you look at that, and when that one fires off, you can make the cursor go right. So, you watch this guys brain, and when those notes are firing, you can translate that with your computer, and make the cursor move right.

That's what they did with the monkeys a few years ago. They could get them to chase something around the screen, moving the cursor with just their thoughts. They trained them on it by giving them little rewards of juice when it worked out right.

So, the technology exists to get into someones brain and figure out what signals are getting thrown around. The technology also exists to assign certain patterns certain commands. When the monkey's brain does this, make the cursor go that way. Eventually the monkey learns that to make the cursor go that way, you think this. Viola.

So, why can't we give a rich man the TV he can change with his mind? In theory, we could. We just put the chip in his brain, and spend a day or two assigning brain patterns to remote commands. This is where it gets hairy though. The brain function for "change to channel 13" is going to be very very very similar to "change to channel 2". So similar in fact, that I doubt you'd be able to detect the difference. So, you've got the task of assigning new patterns. Unique patterns. You don't want a rich guy accidentally changing the channel when he gets excited during a basketball game. You can't exactly use patterns that are common. The "I'm hungry" pattern should never have anything to do with this man changing the channel. You can't really have overlap when a TV remote in placed in your head.

So, after a very lengthy introduction, we get to what I've been thinking about. I think that in the future, alot of the upper class is going to have the chips. Ok, I take it back. I don't really think this is going to happen, but I think that this is a very plausible outcome based on current circumstances. If trends continue... the rich get the chips. More and more things become brain activated. You want to unlock your car, you think the magic thought, your car unlocks. You've got alot of rich people willing to pay for it.

So, more and more devices begin to be brain friendly. Then you get the problem of unlocking your car AND opening the garage door. Things start to overlap when you use common brain patterns.

So what's going to happen? There's going to be a new alphabet of sorts. That's my bet. You're not going to be able to assign "unlock the car" to the "unlock the car" brain pattern. You get too much overlap. You're going to have to learn something unique. Something easily recognizable as different from the other stuff going on in your brain. When you get your implant, they're going to take you into a little room, and show you a cool symbol that you've never seen before. The symbol will be colored sorta weird, and have some very unique things about it. They're going to analyze how you react to this symbol. How your brain waves move, they're gonna record that. They're gonna give you 30 or so different symbols. All unique, all designed to be new to you. So then, when you want to unlock your car, you can think of that fiery ╫ in the sky, and shabam, you've got an unlocked car.

The technology is there, and it's been proven possible. It'd be alot of work, but it's out there, possible. I'm still waiting for a very rich man to start the business of brain recognition. All you'd really need would be a team of about 40 people to test on. You'd have to come up with a completely unique 'alphabet'. Something the world has never seen, something completely unique. You wouldn't want your car starting in the middle of the night cause you dreamed of the letter E. You'd need a bunch of rich people that are tired of having their butler unlock the car for them, they'd rather do it with their mind. It'd be difficult, but you could do it. And if you were the first to do it, you'd get filthy filthy rich off of it.

So, if there happen to be any billionaire's reading this with a few good buddies that happen to be brain surgeons, I expect results from you guys. Why can't rich folks unlock their car with their minds? I demand to know.

There's money to be made. Go go go.

It's 1:24. The moon was orange tonight. I have no idea why, but it looked really cool. I think it might have been from all the smog and fires and stuff we've had. I don't rightfully know, but it was very cool action.

and now, for some lists.

If I were a billionaire, there are a few things that I would never be without. And here they are, in no particular order.

My house would always be stocked with bananas. I'd hire a man whose job was solely to make sure I always had bananas at the perfect window of ripeness. I'd never be without a good banana. I'd always have string cheese, because string cheese is great. We'd never run out of bagles and cream cheese. We'd have all the fixins for a great sandwich, all the time. I'd never have to slice the cheese, it'd be ready for me. We'd always have fresh tomatos, and always have lunch meet. There would always be a few chocolate products around, but never too accessible. They'd be hidden away, but I'd know where they are. The trick would be making them inconvenient to get to, so I wouldn't eat them all. Of course, being a billionaire, I could never eat them all, they'd just keep coming back.

But most importantly, we'd never run out of bananas. Bananas are the perfect fruit. The world would be a better place if we all ate some more bananas.

Ok, enough of that billionaire business. I've rediscovered chocolate milk, and I love it so. For years I hadn't had it, but a couple nights ago I decided I wanted some, and I've had a glass of it every day since. I busted out the old nestle powder stuff from ages past, and surprisingly enough it's still good. It was sorta chunky, but with a little bit of a beating it got all nice and powdery again so I can put it in my milk to make it delicious.

This is getting really long. But this bothered me yesterday. I got a letter in the mail from the insurance company. The jist of it was "Hey, since we're the insurance company, we're not going to cover the OneTouch brand of blood sugar meters anymore. We're switching over to the Freestyle brand. This will come into effect on such and such a date. We'll mail you a free meter and some test strips to get you started."

So, not for much longer am I going to be able to use my beloved Ultrasmart meter. I figure the freestyle is going to be similar. I've only used one once, and that was at a demo at walmart. I wasn't impressed. Their main selling point is that it takes less blood to get a test done. Do you know how much blood it takes to test with my ultrasmart? Pretty much none. Well guess what, you need even less with the freestyle. However, it takes longer to get me my results, something like 15 seconds instead of 5.

The insurance company is doing this because freestyle is cheaper, and they probably struck a deal with each other. But here's the real obnoxious part. I'm going to have to move to an inferior meter. It's a crappy meter. It's not designed with me in mind. It's designed to make money, not to be the best meter ever. The blood is not an issue here.

When you poke your finger, you're gonna get blood. There's only two kinds of pokes. Crappy pokes, and good pokes. Crappy pokes yield very little if any blood. In order to get blood out, you've got to squeeze and squeeze like an animal, really hurting your finger. Crappy pokes suck. Then you've got good pokes. You poke, and more than sufficient blood comes out. You put it on the test strip, and then dispose of the rest of it.

Now, have I ever complained about having to give too much blood to test? No. That's the least of my worries. If you poke your finger, you're gonna get enough blood to test with the ultrasmart. You're just gonna use less of it on the freestyle, and you're gonna get rid of more of it on your pants or in your mouth or whatever. The blood thing is 100% worthless.

So, why did they spend money developing that when it could have gone elsewhere? I have no idea. In my conspiracy theory mind, I think they did it to make money. Because hey, dinguses hear "less blood, that's great!" and jump all over it. But really, blood is not an issue, and hasn't been for about 7 years. Why did OneTouch come out with that stupid compact meter with the gay canister of "auto loading" test strips that sucked big time? Not to make my life easier, cause it sucked. It was to make money.

See, that's trouble. It's all this political mess that results in me using a crappy meter. Look at me, I'm cheaper. I don't care, this is my health we're talking about. Will this make any difference to my health? No. None at all, but I like to complain. I don't care how much blood it takes, but if it takes more than 5 seconds I'm gonna get a little antsy. If it doesn't give me awesome graphs, I'm gonna be upset.

The insurance company is giving me the shaft here. Sure, they're mailing me a free meter. But I like the one I've got. Too bad I won't be able to use it for much longer.

So, here's what I need in a meter. I need something that'll fit into my pocket that comes in one piece. I need a built in poker for my finger, and a little place to store my test strips on the meter. That way, I slip that in my pocket, and it's always with me, I'm always ready to test. I don't have to unzip my little pack, and pop out the poker, then the test strips. Nope, it's all there, ready for me. That'd help me a ton. I could test more often, it'd be more convenient.

Am I ever gonna get that? No. Because that doesn't sell. The people in charge of the big money aren't about what's really best, they're about what sells. Less blood sells. The freestyle is going to save the insurance company money, so that's what I'm gonna get. Boo-urns.

wow, almost 2. I've got church in 7 hours. That's pretty cool. This has been a long post, but things are good. This is the stuff I've been thinking about this week. I've definitely thought about more stuff, but this is what comes to mind at the moment. I hope you've enjoyed this. It's been fun writing it, revisiting the important stuff I've thought about over the week. I figure if I had alot of money I could make alot more money. I'd make a good meter, and then I'd make some cool brain recognition stuff. I'd be unlocking my car doors and testing my blood in no time. So that's the way things are this week. Good. The future looks dang bright, thanks to the greatest generation ever. We're gonna rock, there's no stopping us. Shoot at me all you want, impregnate my peers. I don't care, cause we're gonna rock. At least a few of us, and that's good enough for me.

6 comments:

Flamingo said...

whew, big blog. I don't wanna "show original post" so i'm just gonna comment on what I remember.

Jaron FROST and Jose MAGANELES. haha. I'm good with last names.

Cross country. No, i'm not injured. See, I was very good at coming. All the time. I was pro. But then Girls Camp practically killed me. I was barely keeping up. But then I came back, and I couldn't even run. haha. It was bad. Its just so frustrating. Cause I'm by far the worst on the team. I can't keep up. I want to be there, I want to run, but I can't. I'm not to the point where I can run 9 miles. I couldn't even do 7. I'm willing, I'm just not able. So think about that, and talk to me. We'll figure it out.

ummmmm. i'll come back later. haha.

Corky Marie said...

Haha, Thatcher I couldn't agree with you more!!! This generation is gonna be the best ever! we are so cool. :D

*smile*

CJThatcher said...

Well, you nailed Jose, but I was talking about Jared, not Jaron. I know Jaron's last name.

In other news, come run cross country.

Anonymous said...

You know how jealous I am of you? It's so unfair.

Corky Marie said...

aren't we all jealous of thatcher?

Holy_Roman_Nick said...

Heck yes. 'Cause I know I am. Man, Chris.