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AP scores   
05:47pm 17/07/2006
  5 in Bio... that makes at least 3 of us!
4 in Calc... which means I get to keep my bf, (;-))and take the class I want!
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Senior year   
03:39pm 25/05/2006
  -Senioritis: We'd fight for a cure, but we're too lazy. (courtesy of Rachel's profile)
that pretty much sums up my life at the moment. Ok, that and prom (easiest to sneak into ever, and nice to see everybody I haven't seen in years again and have them remember me), and a open VMS convention/bookstore visit date thing and awards nights galore and excitement for next year at WPI. Been awesome knowing everybody (and in that I'm including any freaks of nature that bring friends/aquaintances that might have become such had I known you longer from all the other states I've been in here) and all that other cheesy stuff...
Yeah, its the end of Senior year, give me a break... ;-)
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07:04pm 04/05/2006
mood: nostalgic
Wrote this for a friend who requested a long e-mail, so its a little over-descriptive, but here's my trip
Day 1:
Had to take a test in English, which I think was 'cuz the teacher (one of my favorites, despite that I'm moaning about her) didn't want to teach because she was coming with us and would be thinking about Italy herself.  Bus ride to Boston, after numerous embraces from the crazy parents (believe it or not, mine wasn't the worst).  Seriously, it was like a scene from any of those boat movies with all the waving mother's arms. Started making use of the book Nolan got me for my birthday, Cryptonomicon, already, but I'm still not finished with it yet.  Great if you're into Math (I love it), but not really so much otherwise.  Anyhow, it made the anticipatory bus ride bearable.  Get to the plane, check in baggage (takes forever), get to meet my roommate, a freshman in college (RISD-amazing) who everybody likes.  Not sure if she likes me, but she's cool (if her coughing scared me a bit).  Turns out, our plane will be 2 hours late.. which got turned into three hours :-P (just to change crews... sort of makes you wonder).  In the meantime, we poked around the international part of the Boston airport, picking out diamonds that we liked, browsing the scarf store and the book store, gossipping (a girl I knew last year is getting married to a brother of one of the people on our trip!), reading more Cryptonomicon.  When the plane eventually bothered coming, the takeoff and landing were smooth.  We each got our own personal tvs to eithher watch movies on, play games, or watch where we were flying over.  Spent most of thhe plane ride sleeping though.  Then we stepped out into Parisian air.  Our tour was cancelled because of how late our flight came in (which was actually lucky, since then I really got to see Paris on my birthday), so all we got to see that day was the airport.  Its built insanely!  You have to take a shuttle from your plane to the terminal (which can be as long as 45 min), and I swear that bus driver was out to kill us!  From Paris to Italy we got to see the Alps, which was amazing.  Another smooth takeoff and landing, which was nice.  They lost Russell's baggage (but they found it eventually, thank goodness), so we left the airport a little later than expected after meeting our tourguide, Emanuela, and the bus driver Guilio.  Our trip to Verona was cancelled too, which was sort of disappointing, but oh well.  Everybody immediately fell in love with Giulio.  He was one of those short cute 30ish Italian guys, and aside from which, he said "Ciao bella" (bye, beautiful, in the most un-sketchy way possible to say that) to everybody that walked off the bus, oh, and he drove the bus well, of course.  Kendra and Abby spent the rest of the trip arguing which one of them he liked better.  The scenery was beautiful, but soon to be beat hands down by the scenery in Tuscany.  You've been to the midwest, right?  Picture that, only instead of corn, its grapes, and you have mountains (though the Italians think they're only hills) in the background, and the houses are all stucco with those chinese like tiles.  On the way, we stop at our first Autogrill, which is the company that owns all the rest stops in Italy.  We tried some Italian snacks (Chicoobo, an Italian root beer, is disgusting, and tastes somewhat like Moxy, I've heard, though our tourguide was convinced that compared to it, root beer tastes like toothpaste).  Even at their rest stops, they serve three course meals!  We all opted for a sandwhich (very good), with our very limited Italian skills.  The Italians themselves are very nice and helpful about the situation, however, and try to speak as much English as they know.  Our tourguide wakes us up once we get to the hotel near Venice with "Wakey wakey", and we eat (poke at would be a more accurate description) dinner there.  Pasta followed by pork followed by desert (which will be our meals for the rest of the week), but none of its really all that good and we're really tired.  To make the day, Officer Murry (another chaperone) takes a few of us to the beach.  My feet touch the Adriatic sea!  The sand is perfect and soft but slightly cakey, the water is only slightly cold, and there's a nice pier to run out on.  Take a shower back at the hotel room (I was one of the lucky people to get a real one rather than a hole in the ground) and go to sleep.
Day 2:  Wake up, eat breakfast, then boat trip to Venice!  First thing we notice: they actually do have river roads there, where they do business and have garages etc.  We start with a guided tour of the Doge's Palace.  We're all very impressed.  Lots of extra sculptures around, a gold guilded staircase, and then lots of paintings inside.  I happened to have picked the main painter inside the Doge's Palace, Tintoretto, for a project in AP Euro, so it was really interesting to see.  He's awesome!  We walked into the cells under the Doge's palace, which were made of lead for the utmost discomfort of the prisoners.  Casanova stayed there for a while, but managed to escape to France, where, our Venetian guide informed us, he could do whatever to women he pleased.  Our Venetian guide was not much found of the French; Napolean was responsible for the destruction of the Venetian republic that had lasted hundreds of years.  We get let off in St. Marks Square, a nice size plaza (they call them piazzas) where we were accompanied by live Italian music.  We watched a Venetian glass blower at work.  I've seen glass blowers before, and didn't expect to be any more impressed, but this guy made an awesome horse in seconds flat.  The people who ran the store were very dynamic about selling their goods too ( they would bang their glasses to make music, roll them on the tables, etc), but I was out of Euros for moment.  Next was the gondola trip.  This very well might have been my favorite part!  The driver was amusing.  He let us drive the boat if we wanted to, and pointed to a fellow gondolier who was dancing and called him Ricky Martin.  He was very friendly with his limited English.  When we got off he said something, then "oh, I mean 'Hasta la vista baby!"  After the trip, we exchanged our money for Euros, and got lost in the Venetian streets (which are entirely for pedestrians and boats-no cars in Venice) while shopping.  We had our first taste of Gelato, and everybody on the trip was instantly hooked.  Much less fat than normal ice cream, and yet far richer.  We got some every place we stopped, but my favorite cone came from Venice.  Just today Mercedes was talking about how much she missed gelato, and at the mention of it I had to go find some - they make it at a chocolate store here, thank goodness!  Two girls clocks are 30 min off, and that scares the chaperones when we can't find them for a bit, but that too gets worked out.  We get driven back to the hotel, and, after dinner, go for another run around the Adriatic Sea, playing soccer and building human pyramids (Officer Murry who took a picture of it had us say "sex on the beach" instead of cheese when he took a picture of the human pyramid- yes, that's how awesome our chaperones were).
Realized I neglected to mention one of the juicier aspects of Venice: the Italian boys vacationing there.  Laura Z got some unwanted attention (actually, I think those were native Venetians).  We stopped because we thought we heard Mr Petrigno's (the amazing teacher who brought us there's) laugh-turned out it was just an Italian laugh- and some man tried to get her into the restaurant with her.  When she escaped, a couple of boys whistled at her.  Laura D, on the other hand, picked up two English speaking Italians that were on a school trip to Venice who followed her around.  They were cute (dark hair, blue eyes, Italian accents), it almost made me wish I wore tight spaghetti strap tops, lol.  Nice guys, with near perfect English skills.  They were very surprised we weren't allowed to smoke when they offered us some cigarettes.
Anywho, on with the trip
Day 3:
LONG bus ride from Venice to Florence.  It turns out, Italians all move through Tuscany on the weekends.  I can't blame them, its the most gorgeous spot in the world!  Nestled in the Alpininos (I'd guess they were about the size of the White Mountains, but, with the Alps so nearby, our touguide didn't really consider them mountains) are more of the adorable Italian countryside houses.  We were kept amused by a nearby truck driver, with a banner that read "Polska" accross his truck, so that became his name.  He was watching tv, reading a map, and drinking coffee while driving.  Really, I don't think we ever passed by him with his hands on the wheel!  In addition, there was a fairly amusing stop in the woods for the boys who had to go to the bathroom.  I read some, watched Kendra enjoy her music, and soaked in Tuscany.  I've heard that Under the Tuscan Sun has gorgeous scenery, but trust me, it can't come close!  We get rushed through a leather factory, where we see how they made a leather box for Catherine D'Medici when she married a French man.  Our tourguide there was apparently actually from Nashua.  We then have our tour of Florence.  For Florence, picture, say, Boston, only make all the buildings in the area from the 18th century at the latest, add random sculptures everywhere, and place a cathedral with a humongo dome in the middle.  We started in the Piazza d'Medici where there's a plaza full of sculptures put there by the Medicis, with the ancient sculpture in the middle, and all the Renaissance ones surrounding it, with the point being that we owe everything to the ancients, but look how much more alive we've made it!  And they did.  You can see the motion from any direction.  In front of the Medici palace there's a copy of Michealangelo's David, meant to symbolize the free republic, and next to it there's a guy beating down a man with a club, which is when the tyrants took over to remind the people that they were now under strict guard.  We saw the Ponte Vecchio, which is the bridge that I sang I would jump off of if the guy I loved didn't love me in O Mio Babbino Caro.  Its a romantic bridge where people buy padlocks, put them on the gate, ad through the key into the river in Florence, the Arno, meaning that their love would last forever-or, as our Florentine tour guide mentioned- until the city government cleans out the river.  Lots of medieval castles, including a prison that has mattresses in the same place the straw beds once stood.  Florence is also home to the first graffitti.  Apparently, people who couldn't afford brick houses would scratch-scrafit bricks onto their houses, and that's the origin of the word.  Its also home of the author of Pinocchio.  Apparently, its a great tradition there to keep a pet cricket in a cage, as good luck.  Then we saw The Dome.  Wow.  If I thought anything was impressive anywhere else, this beat it.  For starters, it was pretty, and for furthers, it was far bigger than I had ever pictured, even after studying it.  The hotel we stay at is very nice by European standards, and there's a whole bunch of little four year old Italians on vacation there.  A couple of us played soccer with them, which eventually turns into all-out American football.  It was so adorable!  There was a little girl who was as, if not more aggressive than the rest of them, and we loved her for it.  It was so cheesy and fun is the international language sort of thing, but it was awesome.
Day 4:
Free day in Florence, after a picture op at the Piazza de Michealangelo, where you can see all of Florence - awesome view.  We go shopping, and see the original David. Again, Wow.  It wasn't the main thing on my list to see because I decided that we'd seen the replica outside already, but its soo worth seeing the real thing.  Michealangelo is a genious!  You can't take pictures inside, but trust Mr. Petrigno to break the rules and take them, however.  He got yelled at four times!  We tried to organize going to mass in the cathedral, because it had to have been awesome, but it turned out the time we thought was mass was actually a private one for a new priest, so I never got to see the inside :-P.  It did give me a chance to see the other main church in the area, however, which is where a whole bunch of famous Italians (Michelangelo, Macchiavelli, Da Vinci) are burried.  Laura Z gets a purse from an illegal street vendor for half his asking price, + a kiss on the cheek, which we teased her for after her previous encounter.  When we get back to the hotel, we play with the little kids again, and a bunch of us get into a circle to talk when they go to sleep.  Mr Petrigno's 27-year-old son says "duck, duck, duck, goose" around the circle, and the goose chases him.  This starts an hour and a half of a game, which was very amusing, from Jason, a boy some affectionately call caveman for his long very curly hair, accidently knocking out Mr. Z, the assistant principal that went on the trip, to Kali, who tiptoed around the place where the most people tripped, to people trying to beat out Adrian, our track star.  I highly suggest turning six again if you ever get the chance, lol.
Day 5:
Stacey manages to accidently break a television at the hotel, so the hotel makes us pay 50 Euro for it when we leave.  Slightly miffed by this, Officer Murry sneaks into the breakfast room and takes seconds for all of us, as well as a few spoons to eat the yogurt with.  During school, he always treats us to a minute with Murry about what is legal and what isn't, in a way that we actually like.  We said his next minute with Murry should be on the subject "stealing food from Italian hotels is illegal."  He eventually felt bad and gave money to Emanuela to pay for them, however, so it doesnt' quite count.  On the trip to Rome we stop in Assisi.  The view of the mideval city is awesome.  It really does look like you stepped back in time at least 500 years.  We see the centuries old body of St. Claire of Assissi, then look through the church of St. Francis of Assissi with the paintings of his life by Giotto on the ceiling.  Its all very awe inspiring in a more medieval sort of way than the rest of Italy's soaring Renaissance look.  Have you ever read Brave New World, btw?  If you have, you'll remember that they cut the top off all the crosses to make them into T's in commemoration of Ford's Model T.  St Francis' cross looked just like that, which amused Ms. Banfield and Meagan, a friend of mine in the English class, enough that they bought one.  More views of the Tuscan hills, and then our hotel near Rome, right on the Tyrian Sea.  Can't dip your feet in the very rocky not-so-clean beach, but its still fun to skip rocks into.
Day 6:
Wake up at the insane hour of 5:30 AM for a guided tour of Rome.  We spend a bit of time waiting outside the walls of the Vatican (which is made out of recycled ancient Roman bricks), then a quick view of the Roman structures the Vatican keeps in its museum.  The cielings everywhere are crazy, guilded and painted to the extreme.  Eventually, we make our way to the Sistine Chapel.  Umm... have I already mentioned that Michealangelo's a genious?  Could spend forever sinking into his paintings.  The actual church itself is tiny and drab, though.  If I were to choose a pope, I would spend the entire time looking at the ceiling.  We then wind our way into St. Peter's Basilica.  The Romans had mosaics that looked like paintings in their cement which can last forever.  We still haven't re-figured out how to do that.  Anywho, St. Peter's Basilica took that idea and has several gorgeous mosaics everywhere, and of course, more Michealangelo with Pieta.  The whole thing is huge, but they make everything so that it doesn't seem to be.  Then there's the Swiss guard, who wear suits with yellow purple and green verticle stripes.  They look really amusing, but apparently, they saved a pope's life looking like that, so out of gratitude, they've been there ever since.  Afterwords its a quick bus trip to Rome's center.  They have a huge monument to Italian unity, an old ractrack, and, of course, the Colloseum, which we get out and walk in.     Umm yeah... the highly overused at this point... Wow!  The Romans were geniuses.  You can still sort of see where the elevators and trap doors would come and surprise the audience, and picture their version of air condiditioning.  We then walk through the forum, to be further impressed by the ancient Romans.  Picture this randomly in the city center.  The cities in Italy are like no other.  Next we stop at the Trevi fountain.  Legend is, if you throw one coin in the Trevi fountain, you're coming back to Rome.  Two, and you're going to marry an Italian.  Three?  You can obtain a divorce from the Italian.  Quick look at the outside of the Pantheon, which has been converted into a Catholic church, but its closed.  Walk to some Piazza or another (I got to lose track of their names), where younger Petrigno and his sister (Mr Petrigno's 16-year-old daughter, Laura) get their charicature done.  It was very well done, and fun to watch.  In the center of the piazza is a fountain with spouts representing a main river in each of the seven continents.  On the trip home, younger Petrigno gets us all singing a round of "row row row your boat" which starts our bus's version of Italian Idol <-amusing. Turns out our touguide actually has a pretty good voice, and is working on getting herself on the radio.  She wins, but it was a tough competition.  We couldn't get Giulio to sing.  He claimed he would do "O Sole Mio" which seemed to be as well known there as like "Mary had a little lamb" or something, but we would have to wait until after a particular turn.  The entire trip from where we were to the hotel was straight :-P
Day 7:
Get dropped off in front of the opening in the vatican wall to see the Pope.  Each of the invited groups of pilgrims gets called out in their language, then the pope comes up and blesses them and their families.  Only saw him as a little white dot among the red dots of the cardinals, (and I'm not a major fan of the pope or the papacy in general, but that's a different story), but still.  We then take the subway to the Spanish steps, so called because the Spanish embassy used to be there.  They're flowery, and supposedly romantic.  The subway in Rome is very nice; everything ends in the main station, its a very smooth ride, its very clean, and it tells you inside the car you're in what stop you're at.  From there, we wander around Rome, stopping at the Trevi fountain again because there's a place there where you can actually buy 1.5 liter drinks for $1.90 instead of the usual $2.50 for a can, and the food is good.  They cut you two slices of pizza and put them on top of each other like a sandwhich, which works well.  We actually walk into the Pantheon, at the door of which there's a girl who's selling tickets to go clubbing, and Mr. Petrigno says we should keep it and tell our parents that we snuck out and actually did it.  Its kind of cool to see the Roman dome.  Lots more wandering the streets of Rome, and then we take the subway to Termini, the main terminal.  Where we get off, I swear I saw people selling pot, at least somebody was counting leaves very closely.  The group of us found the condom vending machine very amusing, and 11 people bought 12 condoms.  I didn't partake in it, but everybody else sure had fun buying them.  Ms. Banfield's daughter even got into it, and her parents took a picture of her contemplating which condoms to buy - a very interesting way of looking at your teacher.  Bus trip home, ending with Giulio sending us off with a "you're all beautiful people!" and "Yankees suck" (Petrigno and Z taught him that one).  He had to leave the bus to get medicine to Emanuela who was very ill from food poisoning, so Murry takes the drivers seat on the bus to scare Guilio into thinking he's going to drive off with it.  We all back away because we can see the headlines "Officer, fresh from stealing spoons, kills student with stolen bus," but near enough to get Guilio's reaction.  He throws his hands up for a moment, then laughs.  Dinner was interesting that night.  A creepy waiter picked a girl at every table to ask to "an appointment on the beach at 10:00.  If you weren't one of the girls, it was very amusing.  According to our tour guide, it wasn't that he was drunk, it was that he was Italian.  They're a very interesting people.  Mercedes calls for a toga party, and I figure, "when in Rome..."<-was actually pretty fun.
Day 8 - My birthday!:
Wake up in a hotel near Rome at 3:00 AM
drive to the airport in rome
two hour flight to Paris
quick tour of paris... saw the invalid hospital, the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, the Paris opera house, Notre Dame Cathedral, the tunnel where Princess Di died, the Chans de lissez (spelled horribly, I know), the obilisk Napolean took from Egypt, the Arc D'Triumph, the police everywhere worried about protests, a tiny car that ran on electricity, and all the side street vendors that sold old books and comic books.   I love Paris!
Was one of the lucky people who got double checked at the security gate :-P.  Wasn't too bad, however, cuz they were very nice to my stuff, and when the guy asked me if I was a minor, I got to say "yes... oh, wait a minute, no!  I'm sooo not a minor!   Today in fact."
Eight hour flight to Boston, reading Terry Pratchett (gift from Nolan), watching fun with Dick and Jane, playing all the games they offered on the tvs.  Air France is an interesting place to spend your eighteenth birthday... they usually give you champagne in a baby bottle, but since I was on a school trip it was apple juice instead.   Eighteen... and drinking apple juice from a baby bottle!  They also gave me crayons, a coloring book, a cat and a pillow, some bubbles, a sticky hand, a mini backpack, and a certificate saying that I turned eighteen at a certain altitude while flying over the Atlantic that was signed by the entire crew.   It was pretty amusing, in fact.  The food wasn't bad either, considering it was airline food.
Land in Boston, bus ride to school with the entire bus singing to me (in English, finally!), calling DJ (who's on his own school trip in Atlanta) and Dad, and having the family that I actually got to see cling to me desperately.  Luckily for me, jet lag didn't kick in until the day after, so I got a full extra six hours of birthday.

oh, and somewhere along the way there was "don't talk about capitalism in the CCCP" and "don't talk about D-Day in Italy" with Meagan<-very amusing

Hope everyone else had fun over vacation as well!
05:01pm 31/03/2006
  WPI it is. Will take the spot on the waitlist for UChicago though  
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More proof of geekiness   
07:52pm 15/02/2006
  i am a total geek
ah yes, much fun. Beleive it or not, that was only 31.55819% ;-) Spent hours on math today, between AMC and regional meet, but I seem to have lost all math ability this year. *Sighs* Gave me more time with most amazing guy in the universe though, which was great. I love math!
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I'm such a Musical nerd   
06:30pm 20/08/2005
mood: enthralled
Listened to "Someone in a Tree" for the fourth time today (B-way the American musical, WERS broadcast, considering buying the CD, and now that its home).Sondheim is amazing!!! Yeah, just got the Pacific Overtures CD . . . which is awesome, as one would expect.
Spent last night at a friends, watching Phantom the movie, talking about the play, singing to the piano accompaniment of Phantom, and then reading Phantom phan fics. Yes, Phantom and Sondheim shouldn't be mentioned in the same post (although I love both, you can't really compare Sondheim's musical and lyrical genius to anyone else's in existence), but it proved the point listed in the topic.
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"The Swan"   
10:06am 06/08/2005
mood: contemplative
I'm auditioning with Camille Saint-Saens "The Swan" for the All State Orchestra. As most of you probably already know, that is all about sound, and how you interpret it. I have a lot of fun with the high-energy, faster pieces (Saint-Saens Allegro Appassionato, for example), but I still need lots of work on the more tonal, slower pieces. Looking for tips on the following:
1) Vibrato. I've found a couple sites, and had various teachers (I move alot) try to teach it to me, but still looking for tips as to how to make longer vibratos not sound "wah-wah"-y, when to use what type, etc.
2) Interpretation. Has anybody heard this piece, and had a particular favorite rendition? What made it so good? I'm not copying, but some ideas to go off of would be nice.
3) Fingering. (towards the middle of the piece, after the high B) high up on your D string (I lose track of what position I'm in after about fifth) or in fourth position on the A string? I've tried it both ways, and they sound very different, but I'm not sure which way sounds better.
Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
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Les Miserables   
11:30pm 03/08/2005
mood: excited
Well, I fell in love with it when I read the book, and now I'm in the cast!!! :-D :-D :-D Ok, so its not Fantine, but making ensemble when over 150 people auditioned isn't bad at all!!
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12:25pm 29/07/2005
mood: indifferent
Hmm. . . what I've been doing. Not much ljing, obviously. Finally taking drivers ed, which is even less fun than I imagined. Working on Macbeth (playing Gentlewoman, who gets to be in the handwashing scene and Mentieth), practicing for All-State (the Swan, fairly easy, but needs a ton of tonal work, and I'm not the best at vibrato) and avoiding doing my summer projects. Has anybody read Don Quixote? I'm enjoying it actually--in small doses. Cervantes can be funny, and at times I love Don Quixote (I mean, anyone that goes crazy over reading is a kindred spirit) but it gets boring at points too, so I take a break with a different book, and haven't gotten very far (200 out of 900 :P). It will be very easy to write the journal on though, the whole impossible dream, madness vs sanity thing. Doesn't sound like much, but this summer is still to short to fit it all. Oh well. How's everybody else's summer?
07:42pm 29/12/2004
mood: impressed
I have virtually no time, so I haven't really posted lately, but here goes:
Lion King: Saw with some of the people I haven't really talked to since summer. You had to love the amazing job they did with the puppets and the way it was set up in general. It went back to the old theatre magic, not the kind that needed special effects, which was really cool to see. The acting was great (my personal favorite was Zazoo, though many could argue for Scar). Understudy for Nala had an awesome voice. It can be enjoyed by anybody.
Wicked: On Broadway! Idina is amazing! I came because I love the score, and that was what I was least impressed with. The set was amazing, though I didn't pay as much attention to it as it deserved, because I was to busy watching the faces on the cast. Everybody's acting was over the top (in a good way). I went up to touch the stage, and, since the orchestra was still right underneath it, I called down to them that they had done an awesome job. Seriously, nobody gives the orchestra enough credit. Can you imagine a show without them?
Chrismakkah: My friends and I went caroling, which was fun. We had lost our Menorah, and eventually used some kitchen things with slits that we used for candles. Funny thing is, it actually worked. Anywho, it was a fun holiday season. Hope yours was.
Merchant of Venice   
08:27am 18/09/2004
mood: nostalgic
Well, its over, and I guess with it went the summer. I can't believe how awesome it came out!!! Congrats to all the cast members!!! Congrats to all Techies!!! Thanks a million to the Director!!!!!!
11:09am 19/08/2004
mood: accomplished
Well, I've finally finished Grapes of Wrath, my summer project for English! I actually thought the book itself was pretty good, now all I have to do is write four thousand words on it.
Other things I've been doing:
Rubiks cube: it might help if the cube I was doing didn't have the faces pretty much taken off so I have to guess what some of the colors formerly were by looking at the colors around it. :-P
learning something about something about C programming: well, I know most of the basics
learning to compose: working on it
piece for All State: if it takes me a year, I /will/ conquer this thing that goes fast in tenor clef.
MyAct: I've got all my lines memorized (most of the time), and I've been having fun just being a part of it
road trip vacation: the watch and clock museum was cool, Cedar Point (an amusement park in Ohio) rocked, Frank Lloyd Wright is a really cool architect (we saw Falling Water and the Johnson Wax building), the Art Institute had a great exhibit on the making of Sunday at La Grand Jatte, my relatives are nice, and Gettysburg was really cool. We traveled through 15 states!
Lord of the Rings Exhibit   
08:28pm 17/08/2004
mood: creative
Absolutely rocked!!!!!!
The Boston Museum of Science has the US premiere of the Lord of the Rings exhibit, featuring some of the costumes (like Galadriels and Arwen's dresses, Theoden's outfit, and the armor for each of the armies of Middle Earth), some of the software (sizing, motion capture, scanning faces), and tons of information about how they made it so awesome Including the Massive software that allowed them to create armies with people [or orcs or elves] that act in groups and as individuals, which I thought was absolutely awesome (being somewhat into animation and creating software myself, ever since joining FIRST). In addition, I got to meet the man who played Lurtz (Uruk Hai leader that Aragorn kills)/Gothmog (the weird looking orc dude that tells everybody to stand their ground and steps away from the piece of Minas Tirith falling on him in the third movie)/ Witchking (okay, if you don't know who he is, read the book and watch the movies!) I have a poster in my room signed by him and his makeup artist (we watched her make him up earlier that morning)! I got to attend the exhibit a day before the general populace because my family is a member of the museum. I had such high expectations for it that I didn't think it would ever be able to live up to my standards. It exceeded them.
KUDOS to LotR! KUDOS to Tolkein! KUDOS to Peter Jackson and the whole cast and crew of the movie! YAY for Science museum membership!

And everybody should run out and buy the tape of Joshua Bell's West Side Story! (Extremely high compliment coming from a cellist who doesn't think anything in the world can beat the sounds of a cello ;-))
quote from Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants   
02:22pm 06/08/2004
mood: hopeful
"Maybe, she [Tibby] thought as she walked, Brian Mc Brian was on to somethin important. Maybe happiness didn't have to be about the big, sweeping circumstances, about having everything in your life in place. Maybe it was about stringing together a bunch of small pleasures. Wearing slippers and watching the Miss Univers contest. Eating a brownie with vanilla ice cream. Getting to level seven in Dragon Master and knowing there were twenty left to go.
Maybe happiness was just a matter of the little uptics - the traffic signal that said 'Walk' the second you got there - and downticks - the itchy tag at the back of your collar - that happened to every person in the course of the day."
"When life hands you a lemon, say 'oh yeah, I like lemons. What else ya got?" - Henry Rollins (quoted in the same book)
Maybe happiness is taking those lemons and liking them because they are fresh and juicy. Maybe happiness is letting the little things surprise you because they're so beautiful, or just simply surprising. Maybe, if we looked at people and the world and ourselves and saw their potential to be great, something amazing and surprising and wonderful there would be a lot more happiness to go around.