Monday, September 12, 2005

Further proof that Steve Martin is brilliant...

He said this:

"I often think all that thinking we do and that emotional pain is some kind of evolutionary flaw. Why? Why are we neurotic? What's the purpose?" Martin said. "It's something like evolution going too far, and we end up so worried about things that don't matter. That's what love is. It's like this whole side effect of mating that got really complicated."

football funnies from this weekend...

First, I don't know if you'll find anyone anywhere who would claim Duke is a football school. Actually, I don't even know if you would find anyone who would even call the team decent, but I think they may have reached a new low this weekend: You see, the expansion of the ACC means we now get to play the likes of Virginia Tech, which we did on Saturday. The final score was 45-0 in favor of Tech, but the really sad part is that Duke only had 35 yards of total offense. Yes, Va Tech had more points than we had yards...

Second, while watching the UNC-Ga Tech game, one of the commentators uttered the following:
"There have been four instances in this game where penalties have had an effect on field position..." Now, I may be wrong here, but don't penalties usually have an effect on field position? I can only think of a couple of situations where penalties DON'T have an effect on field position....

Anyway, it's good to have college football back in my life...if only I could find a decent team to watch live....

Friday, August 26, 2005

another really boring post

Can someone please tell my why the caller ID on my phone suddenly decided it wants to be on Central time? Anyone? Anyone? The best part is when I check the call log online, the time is correct, so it's not a problem with the system. Apparently my phone just wishes it was in the midwest?

Thursday, August 25, 2005

I'm a huge nerd (yet again)

I had the stirring revelation today that I like the journal Nature better than the journal Science... disappointing blog posting, isn't it?

Monday, August 01, 2005


So I was watching the weather channel this morning as I do every morning when an unfamiliar commercial appeared on my screen saying something about life depending on one more yard, etc... Intrigued, I stopped rummaging through my sock drawer to see where the story was going and was amused to find that the players on my screen were wearing little blue Duke helmets. I was even more amused when I realized the voice over was talking about the toughness and grit required to attack the gridiron, etc... Anyone who has watched a Duke football game in the last decade or so can appreciate the hilarity in this as watching Duke play is somewhat similar to going to a high school football game (and we're not talking about the state championship game, either...) The best part, however, was yet to come: Apparently, this year's motto or theme or whatever for Duke football is... (drumroll) BLUE COLLAR!!!!!

Duke. Blue collar. Seriously.

That ought to keep me going for awhile :)

Saturday, July 23, 2005

a revelation on the South...

I know that Northerners who come down to the South complain all the time that life moves too slowly down here and that no one ever seems to want to get anything done on time. Well, I've had an epiphany on the subject brought on by observations of myself and those around me. My sample includes native Southerners, Westerners, Northerners, and even people from other countries and I've discovered that regardless of a person's point of origin, living here in NC for a period of time causes one to become increasingly lethargic (especially this time of year) and I think I've worked out why: You see, it's just too fricking hot here to want to do much of anything! It's very hard to get motivated when you know you're going to work up a sweat getting from your house to your car... It seems like a much better idea in this situation to simply lie on your kitchen floor in your air-conditioned house and moan about the weather. In fact, I challenge everyone out there to move down here for a summer or two and try to maintain your fast-paced, highly motivated lifestyle. I think it may actually be physically impossible.

Aren't you all glad I figured this out for you? Now if I could just figure out why living south of the Mason-Dixon line makes you incapable of working a 4-way stop sign, we'd all be in better shape...

Thursday, July 21, 2005

grandparents and fleas

I was supposed to go visit my grandparents in scenic Aiken, SC this weekend. I had planned my week at work so I didn't have to come in over the weekend, I had gotten an oil change so my car would be ready for the drive, I had blocked out the weekend, so I had no social engagements planned.... I was all set to make the trek down south in two days until I got a phone call at 10:30 last night telling me that my grandparents were cancelling on me. I think it's a bad sign when your grandparents don't want to see you....especially when you're their only grandchild. I am pond scum.

Actually, the story is even funnier than that - you see, the reason they cancelled is apparently my aunt's apartment had become infested with fleas and they are going to try to help her take care of the problem. My aunt has fleas and my grandparents don't want to see me. Ah, my family is fun :)

Wednesday, July 13, 2005


Today is a good day.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

biology gone awry

Okay, so as a biology nerd, I sometimes think about things differently, so here's a random thought I had the other day while running:

The principle of mate selection in terms of evolutionary biology states that an individual animal will likely mate with someone whose genetic characteristics will combine with the original animal's characteristics to produce offspring with the highest level of fitness. Thinking about this in human terms, I started to wonder about the flip side of that equation: the people out there that are just so screwed up that nature wants their genes to be purged from the pool. Do they select mates who are equally screwed up such that their genes will combine to self-destruct and remove or at least reduce their influence in the gene pool? Think about that the next time you find yourself attracted to someone...

Wednesday, June 08, 2005


So I'm not really a biblical scholar or anything, but I recall something about plagues such as frogs, locusts, and hail while the Jews were in Egypt. I don't however, remember anything about body parts...

FLORAL PARK, New York (AP) -- The body of an apparent stowaway was ripped in half during flight Tuesday and his leg crashed into a suburban neighborhood, where a homeowner found the severed limb in the middle of her lawn, authorities said.

Pam Hearne heard "a loud crash" and later was stunned to see a foot clad in an Adidas sneaker and a sock in her yard, said Officer Thomas Blanchard. The leg, with hip and spine attached, dented the shingled roof of her garage before bouncing into the lawn.

Police suspect the remains are from a stowaway who may have been crushed as the South African Airways jet lowered its landing gear on its approach to Kennedy Airport.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Jim Peters said the pilot of flight 203 would have probably started lowering the plane's landing gear in the sky over the home in Floral Park, about 5 miles from the airport.

Peters said a Customs agent that met the flight at the airport found another leg hanging from the wheel well.

The airline said in a statement that the flight landed with "no impact" on the passengers and crew and it was working closely with authorities to investigate how someone may have stowed away.

The flight originated in Johannesburg, and made one stop in Senegal. Authorities had not identified the remains, which were hauled away from Hearne's yard in a plastic bag.

Hearne, a special education teacher, said that when she first saw the leg in the grass, "it didn't look real."

"But I am very glad that I live where I do," she said, "so I don't have to run for my life like this man probably was doing."

There have been cases of stowaways being crushed by the mechanism in aircraft wheel wells and perishing from the extreme cold at high altitude

Monday, June 06, 2005


Okay, does this seem dumb to anyone else?

I get an e-mail from my credit card company (a legitimate e-mail, not a scam), reminding me to make sure the e-mail address they have for me is current. They contact me via e-mail because they think my E-MAIL address may be out of date? Good thinking, guys.

Monday, April 18, 2005

I live in Nerdland

So I was getting gas this morning and there was a little note posted by the management essentially asking people not to pay for their gas in change because it took too long to count. As I glanced at the note, I noticed that someone had written on it. Now, in any normal town, you would expect to maybe see a phone number or perhaps a " ______ was here" or perhaps a lewd picture or limerick.... right? Well, as I looked a little more closely, I noticed that our petty vandal had done none of these things. Intead, this person had corrected the grammar on the note! I live in nerdland.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Best compliment in a long time...

Okay, I'm just going to say upfront that this probably won't mean anything to 90% of the people out there, but I got the best compliment I've received in a long time on Thursday...

I was out on my usual Thursday afternoon run through Duke Forest and I came upon two Kenyans running on the trail ahead of me (there is a fairly sizeable contingent of Kenyans who train in the area - I can't figure out why they chose here, but they did). They were obviously warming up because I was gaining on them as I made my way around the trail and as I passed them, I smiled at one and continued running. I should also note here that the Kenyans very rarely speak to anyone else on the trail and, as I learned on Thursday, don't even chat with each other much while running. I don't think they're unfriendly or anything, I kind of figure it's got to be a combination of being focused on their training and just being quiet by nature because they are always very trail courteous. ANYWAY, about halfway around the 3-ish mile loop, they apparently finished their warmup and started picking up the pace. I could hear them coming up behind me, so I moved over to the edge of the trail to give them room to pass and as they did, one of them turned to me and said, "looking good." Now coming from many other places, I would assume it was some obnoxious commentary on what I was wearing or how I looked, but given that a) I was nasty and sweaty from running, and b) these were KENYANS, I can only assume he was commenting on my run. I GOT A COMPLIMENT FROM A KENYAN ON MY RUNNING!!!!!!!!!!!

Like I said - it won't mean much to most of you :-P

Friday, January 21, 2005


So I was pouring myself a bowl of Rice Krispies this morning and found that I had reached the bottom of the box, which is kind of sad because apparently we're getting ready for another ice storm, so I may not be able to restock for a while. So I'm a little bummed and getting ready to throw away the bag and recycle the box when something pink catches my eye. I peer into the darkness of the box and find that lo and behold, I had purchased myself some Rice Krispies with a prize inside! "Yippee!" I think and reach in to find out what I've won. As I pull the little plastic covered packet out of the box, I realize that I am even luckier than I first thought... I have won myself two little sample-sized packets of POP ROCKS!!!! Now I can relive those fabulous summer nights from my childhood, but this time without fear as the Mythbusters have shown me that Pop Rocks mixed with Coke in normal quantities do not cause your stomach to explode. Hooray!!!

it's a North Carolina Miracle

The other night I was driving home from work and I saw something scurry across the road. It took me a minute to figure out that it was a 'possum, which, in itself, is not that big of a deal as there appear to be about a million of them around Durham. Upon further reflection, however, I was struck by what I had just seen. After 3.5 years here, I had just seen my very first LIVE 'possum! AND it had successfully crossed the street! Now, I've seen a substantial number of DEAD 'possums by the side of the road, and I've heard of people seeing live possums in backyards and such, but I am the first person I know who has seen one of these little critters successfully cross the road.

Yes, I'm easily impressed...what of it?

Friday, January 07, 2005

On behalf of the athletic department...

Okay, I know I sound like a big whiny baby here, but I think that we need some help here in Durham. Apparently there's something in the air or water here that makes tall, athletic men injury/illness prone. I guess I can understand now why Mike Dunleavy wanted to get out so badly (though I will still never forgive him for whoring himself out to the NBA when he clearly stated he would stay here and finish college...and I do get a small bit of satisfaction from the fact that he's not performing all that well...bad me!). Back to the matter at hand, though... We need big men!! The big men we currently have seem to be dropping at an alarming rate. It's like there's something in Durham that affects big men the way Coors field affects pitchers! There has to be someone out there (besides Shelden Williams, of course...knock on wood for his health) who can step in and help us out! Anyone? Hello?