Battle of the English(language)  

Posted by Aaron

I guess I get it from my Grandma, but I love English. Or to be more specific, I love literature. I could do without the diagramming sentences, spelling and all the other technicality's of writing, but I devour books. While in the past I've lent towards science fiction, fantasy and westerns, I've gotten very into Shakespeare. I also love short stories. What sparked that interest is Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales. It is amazing to read those in the original text. What alot of people don't realize is that English has three periods. Old, middle and modern. Shakespeare and King James is (gasp!) Modern English! The Canterbury Tales and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, and books from that period are middle English. It is greatly influenced by French, but surprisingly easy to read. Old English is hard to read. You'll find it in books and poems like Beowulf. It has alot of German mixed in with it.
Here is a expert from The Canterbury Tales, and if you remember that there are no silent e's, you'll find it is like a poem...
"In southwerk at the tabard as I lay
Redy to wenden on my pilgrymage
To caunterbury with ful devout corage,
At nyght was come into that hostelrye
Wel nyne and twenty in a compaignye,
Of sondry folk, by aventure yfalle
In felaweshipe, and pilgrimes were they alle,
That toward caunterbury wolden ryde."
Aside from English, my legs are killing me. I ran 15 miles in 2:10 yesterday, and my body won't let me forget it. I had alot of trouble getting out of bed this morning, but something I read sticks in my mind. Running never takes more than it gives. I will leave that open to interpretation.

Fishin' the canals...  

Posted by Aaron

I had been seeing carp and trout for weeks in the canals at Alton Baker park, and finally I had to get some. It was slightly drizzly, but a couple friends and I braved the cold and cast a few into a certain "productive spot", near a bridge. It took a while, but I caught two rainbows, and a 15ish inch carp. The trout were only about 10 or so inches. Apparently my flies were too good for them, so I stuck a worm on the hook and cast it in. The carp was a lucky hit, I snagged him in the tail and pulled him in. It was a workout for my fly rod, but good stuff.
Not a very pretty spot, but here are some pictures...

Marathon... and other workouts.  

Posted by Aaron

Well, got an email back from the people in charge of the marathon, and turns out, I get a 10% discount... Yeah. That puts it in the $90 range.. Ouch!
Yesterday I had a great run. I ran about 12 miles, up Hendrix hill and around. My legs felt dead the whole time until about 10 miles, when I got a second wind and fairly well sprinted the next 2 miles! It is amazing when that happens. I am getting ready for an all day concert this Friday, so I am working out my lungs for the tuba. Now that's a workout!

Don't make sense....  

Posted by Aaron

I was disappointed to realize that to run in marathon I now have to pay a fee of $105 dollars! If I don't pay to be entered and just run the race, I am in danger of being labeled a "bandit"(which personally I think would be cool), and being kicked off the track(which would not be cool). It is a sorry situation, but a email was sent to see if it is possible for poor students like myself get a lesser cost to run... We will see what happens.
On a not so minor note, I was intrigued due to the fact I am now labeled as a "right wing extremist" by homeland security, due to the fact I oppose abortion and own firearms. I suppose if they knew I was a Christian I would be a threat to national security! It's a messed up world where those who advocate for the right of the unborn to live are labeled dangerous...


Posted by Aaron

Well, my marathon is coming up. I ran 12 miles today up Hendrix Hill and around the outlying area. Running is just about the best therapy I can think of. I mostly like to run trails and along the Willamette river in Alton Baker park. Great fun. Here's some pictures of the area I like to run.


Posted by Aaron

A couple months ago some friends of mine and I went snow shooing on the Crescent Lake path. It was alot of fun! We spent three days out on the trail, slept in tents and snow caves, and hung out in little shelters along the way. Here is a video of a snow cave my buddy Dylan and I made..

This is funny...  

Posted by Aaron

From Shooting Illustrated, one of the weirdest coolest things I've seen in a long time...

Ray Gun

At a remote location on the North Island of New Zealand, an eccentric visionary named Dr. Grordbort has assembled a small but potent arsenal of Aether Oscillators, which function on gaseous energy rather than powder and lead. Created by his Senior Conceptual Designer Greg Broadmore, the most imposing of these is the F.M.O.M. Wave Disrupter. Looking like a 1930s Flash Gordon ray gun, it is both futuristic yet Edwardian in appearance, although Broadmore states they have all been hand built within the past three years.

Ray Dial

To fire the Wave Disrupter, the Pressure Dial is adjusted until an initial resonance of 523 Hz (using tuning fork provided) is produced.

Considering its exposed gauges and weight, the Wave Disrupter is not user-friendly. In fact, it can be as disastrous to the person firing the gun as to the intended target. “When you read the instructions,” Broadmore laughs maniacally, “you’ve got to think, ‘there’s no way I can shoot this thing without killing myself.’”
Operation of the Wave Disrupter starts by ensuring the Compressed Inverse Ether Phial is at least 6⁄7 full before charging. Then the pressure dial is carefully adjusted until a resonance of 523 Hz (Hertz)—a perfect pitch of high C—is reached. A tuning fork is provided for this purpose. The Wave Disrupter must be discharged within six seconds and the wave must not be emitted longer than 42⁄3 seconds. Shooters are cautioned by the company to avoid looking directly at the wave, which complicates aiming, as the gun has no sights.
“These things vibrate at an uncomfortable level,” Broadmore warned. “They feel like they’re going to explode in your hands and you’ll be struggling to hold onto it once you charge it up. There is no recoil, but once you’ve dispersed (fired) it, the thing will be oscillating like crazy. It could very well leap out of your hands if you aren’t holding it tightly.”

Wave Disrupter

The F.M.O.M. Industries Wave Disrupter produces no recoil, but can be hazardous to everything around it. The instruction manual warns, “In case of catastrophic failure, remove oneself and property from vicinity of device promptly.” The author knew the danger when he tested the gun.

“The conical rays of the cones expand outward from the gun,” Broadmore explained, “so the further away something is, the more likely it’s going to get hit. Conversely, the energy reduces with distance. So you’re talking an effective range of 30 to 50 meters (approximately 98 to 164 feet), although you might be able to cause damage to something beyond and have absolutely no trouble hitting it (because of the expanding conical rays), but the most extensive disruption would be within 50 meters.”
I can’t recommend the Wave Disrupter for home-defense, because it would not only take out the bad guy, but everything around him, including, given enough distance, the entire neighborhood. It would also be impractical for plinking or hunting. I discovered during testing that you can’t find your target afterward.
Available in a limited edition of 500, the Wave Disrupter is only legal to own for those with a BATFE Class MCMLXIV FFL. To obtain this license, you must be willing to submit to DNA testing, several polygraph tests and a rigorous battery of “probing examinations.” After receiving your paperwork, usually about six to eight years after initial filing, you must surrender your first-born son to obtain an import license. These small inconveniences are well worth the pride you will feel as the only guy on the block capable of vaporizing it. For those still interested in purchasing one, April Fool’s!

— Rick Hacker

NOTE: Special thanks to Academy Award winners Richard Edlund of Richard Edlund Studios, CA, and Peter Jackson’s WETA Workshop in New Zealand for creating the lead photos. Non-functioning Wave Disruptors really are available from WETA for $660 and make a lovely conversation piece.

Almost Easter  

Posted by Aaron

It looked like it was going to be a sunny day this morning, but unfortunately the clouds took over and it was just another gloomy afternoon. Hopefully tomorrow will be nicer.