Archive for February, 2009

Never Eat Anything Longer Than Your Finger

A 1 and 1/2 oz. snack box of Sun-Maid California raisins that the school cafeteria serves is two and one-eight inches wide and seven-eights of an inch long. However, the dimensions that really concern me is it’s height. The box is two and seven-eights inches tall.

While sunlight may travel 93 million miles to turn our Grapes into Sun-Maid raisins, the human finger must travel the two and seven-eights inches that is its length* in order to retrieve a raisin from the sticky depths of the box (ignoring the fact that the box could be opened from the bottom). During the process, the lip of the box cuts into the web of your finger, and as such is not a comfortable process.

I propose that Sun-Maid should make its boxes a wee bit shorter, so as to better facilitate the consumption of their raisins.

A too tall box of raisins.

*Actually the length of my index finger, as measured from the third crease. For some reason, it is ridiculously difficult to research the length of the human index finger, which is why I used my own. What keeps coming up instead on Google is a billion articles about how the ratio of your index finger compared to your ring finger may relate to your sexual orientation, and even the length of the male genitalia.

February 26, 2009 at 6:45 PM 1 comment

Wherefore Art Thou?

Instant messaging is supposed to be instant. Type a message, hit ENTER, and it’ll end up on the other side just like that.

With instant messaging, you come to expect instant replies. But some people turn on their computers, sign on, and do something else, letting their computer idle away and use nonrenewable energy. They don’t even have the decency to leave an away message to let you know that they’re gone.

Instead, they simply expect you to sit there and wonder if they’re ever going to answer when you have something important (but not important enough to warrant the trouble for phone calls), to talk to them about. That’s just plain rude.

Electronic communications cannot be compared to real life vis-a-vis, but nevertheless, there is nothing more infuriating or depressing than seeing an IM screen with only your unanswered messages.

Talking to your hand.

February 25, 2009 at 9:52 PM 2 comments

Walking Advertisement

I’m part of this cancer awareness and hoping-for-a-cure club at school.

Like most clubs, it was deemed necessary to have a T-shirt, partly in order to officiate the club and partly because it’s nice to feel like you belong to something because of the clothes on your back.

This year, the shirt happened to be pink.

Now there’s been this thing about guys wearing pink as a fashion statement a few years back, but I’ve never caught up with it. Not that I’ve ever been fashionable or any of the extremes. I like good old conservative.

So when I starting wearing the club shirt, people started going, “What!?! He’s wearing pink? He never wears pink!” Then it forces me to explain the reason why I’m wearing this outrageous color, that cancer is best prevented through early detection, no, I’m not gay, that you shouldn’t smoke, and all that good stuff. Multiply that by six classes a day and then some.

What a wonderful way to spread awareness.

A pink ribbon. Created by Ameil Weisbum.

February 25, 2009 at 4:00 PM 3 comments

Fit for the Gods

There are those who say that green is better,
And stay away from things that might have moved.
Some say it’s a religious matter,
That their abstinence cannot be behooved.

Learned men say green is healthier for you,
And that red will give you a heart-attack.
All these would rather eat soy beans in lieu,
Than enjoy Zeus’s most favorite snack.

A food fit for the gods; is that not beef?
Done rare, done well, done burnt matters not.
One is what one eats, so feel I relief.
Better a cow than a plant in a pot.

Ev’rything in moderation, they say.
But the more beef the merrier my day.

A sonnet for English. Written literally for your benefit.

February 16, 2009 at 4:23 PM 6 comments

Don’t Look Back

Today is a good day. Despite being Friday the 13th.

For the first time, I think I’ve got an A on my biology test. What a nice way to start the semester.

Looking back on last semester, I’ve noticed that their is an interesting and depressing phenomenon that occurs when you are doing poorly on a test.

So you’ll be going through the test, and on average you’ll answer about three out of every five questions.

However, it doesn’t seem that way to you. Because of your healthy optimism, it feels like you’re answering quite a few problems, possibly even enough to get a B on the test.

So you keep working, and at the end of it, you’re feeling good. Then, like a good student, you turn back to check and to go over those “very few” problems that you skipped. That’s when a brutal reality check comes in: it turns out that you’ve skipped 40% of the test!

Normally, you would go in and make educated guesses, and barring that, mark “C”, the lucky answer. But noo, it’s not possible now, becaues your teacher happens to dock a quarter point for every incorrect answer.

Now you’ve got to make a gamble – leave it at 60%, or risk guessing, even educated ones.

Whatever happened to that hope that you once had while taking the test?

February 13, 2009 at 9:29 PM 2 comments

Cafeteria Klutzes

Whoever runs the school cafeterias must have an IQ equal to the amount of seasoning they place on their French fries, which is next to none, one of my friends pointed out.

The cafeteria have made some very dumb actions over the last the year.

First, they had this little experiment with water. Originally, they served the little half-pint bottles of water that had the CRV equivalent to a normal bottle of water, despite the smaller size.

It was all well and fine, and the school made a pile out of recycling the bottles, but then the cafeteria decided to go and try out a new method of water distribution: water in a bag!

It looked something like this:

Water in a bag! Photo from Survival Supply.

Actually, I stand corrected. This wasn’t new. Several years back when I was in elementary school they also tried milk in bag. In order to drink from one of these polymer nuisances, sometimes called a “pillow pack”, you had to take a straw and stab the bag while applying pressure with your other hand.

Unfortunately, most kids are not that adept at following directions, and there were more than a few occasions where an incorrect attempt to insert a straw ended up in a spreading puddle of milk/water. Alternatively, there were some kids who are simply immature, and started a “pillow” fight, and ended up being a water balloon fight.

Next, the school decided to modernize the relatively simple process of collecting an over-priced $4.50 in exchange for a lunch. So they brought in these restaurant-style touch-screen registers and made everyone enter their student ID’s. However, as with all technologies, there is a learning curve required for these things, and so the lunch lines grew longer as the cashiers scratched their heads and wondered which button to poke. This was the one time that I hated technology.

For strike three, the school decided to introduce boxes of Sun-maid Raisins. Once again, the school underestimated the immaturity of certain students: California hand-picked, sun-dried grapes filled the air and the bottom of our soles became covered in mushed raisins.

Everything has its consequences, including food. Even cafeterias have to think before they serve.

February 11, 2009 at 10:38 PM 2 comments

the Point That Almost Got Away

For some reason, after passing regular Biology with more or less an easy A last year, I had the impression that AP Biology would be a breeze.

How wrong I was.

Oh, the class seems easy enough. No homework, no five hour afterschool labs. Life doesn’t get much better.

Until the tests come. And you realize that because there was no homework, you haven’t really learned the stuff at all. And you take the test and fail it, because all the stuff you forgot to study while cramming somehow ends up on the test. Also, if you guess, it had better really, really educated, since the teacher makes like the AP and knocks off a quarter point for wrong answers.

So moral number one of the story is to appreciate homework and to study everything and miss nothing.

Somehow, though, despite failing more or less every single test, with barely any curves, since a certain smart person has to go and set the bar a bit too high, I end up with an 84.

And the grading scale, which is altered, makes 84.5% (which rounds up to 85%), an A-.

So I get all freaked out because I am 0.5% or less away from that vaunted A.

Asking the teacher, I discover that I’m one point away from getting that A-. Just one point.

And luckily, I managed to get back the half point that she took away because I wrote “oxidizing” instead of “oxidizing agent”, and another half point because she did the subtraction wrong on a lab.

So, assuming I myself did the math wrong, I should have an A. An A-, but an A nevertheless.

Lesson number two: every point counts.

February 5, 2009 at 11:19 PM 2 comments

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