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So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

The Profile

Age. 36
Gender. Female
Ethnicity. that of my father and his father before him
Location Altadena, CA
School. Other
» More info.
The World

The Link To Zanzibar's Past
This is my page in the beloved art community that my sister got me into:


Extra points for people who know what Samarinda is.
The Phases of the Moon Module
Croc Hunter/Combat Wombat
My hero(s)
Only My Favorite Baseball Player EVER

Aw, Larry Walker, how I loved thee.
The Schedule
M: Science and Exploration
T: Cook a nice dinner
Th: Parties, movies, dinners
F: Picnics, the Louvre
S: Read books, go for walks, PARKOUR
Su: Philosophy, Religion
The Reading List
This list starts Summer 2006
A Crocodile on the Sandbank
Looking Backwards
Wild Swans
Tales of the Alhambra (in progress)
Dark Lord of Derkholm
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
The Lost Years of Merlin
Harry Potter a l'ecole des sorciers (in progress)
Atlas Shrugged (in progress)
A Long Way Gone (story of a boy soldier in Sierra Leone- met the author! w00t!)
The Eye of the World: Book One of the Wheel of Time
From Magma to Tephra (in progress)
Lady Chatterley's Lover
Harry Potter 7
The No. 1 Lady's Detective Agency
Introduction to Planetary Volcanism
A Child Called "It"
Is Multi-Culturalism Bad for Women?
Americans in Southeast Asia: Roots of Commitment (in progress)
What's So Great About Christianity?
Aeolian Geomorphology
Aeolian Dust and Dust Deposits
The City of Ember
The People of Sparks
Cube Route
When I was in Cuba, I was a German Shepard
The Golden Compass
Clan of the Cave Bear
The 9/11 Commission Report (2nd time through, graphic novel format this time, ip)
The Incredible Shrinking Man
New Moon
Breaking Dawn
Armageddon's Children
The Elves of Cintra
The Gypsy Morph
Animorphs #23: The Pretender
Animorphs #25: The Extreme
Animorphs #26: The Attack
Crucial Conversations
A Journey to the Center of the Earth
A Great and Terrible Beauty
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
Dandelion Wine
To Sir, With Love
London Calling
Watership Down
The Invisible
Alice in Wonderland
Through the Looking Glass
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
The Host
The Hunger Games
Catching Fire
Shadows and Strongholds
The Jungle Book
Beatrice and Virgil
The Help
Zion Andrews
The Unit
Quantum Brain
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
No One Ever Told Us We Were Defeated
Memento Nora
The Name of the Wind
The Terror
Tao Te Ching
What Paul Meant
Lao Tzu and Taoism
Libyan Sands
Sand and Sandstones
Lost Christianites: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew
The Science of God
Calculating God
Great Contemporaries, by Winston Churchill
City of Bones
Around the World in 80 Days, by Jules Verne
Stranger in a Strange Land
The Old Man and the Sea
Flowers for Algernon
Au Bonheur des Ogres
The Martian
The Road to Serfdom
De La Terre � la Lune (ip)
In the Light of What We Know
Devil in the White City
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August
Red Mars
How to Be a Good Wife
A Mote in God's Eye
A Gentleman in Russia
The Fatal Conceit: The Errors of Socialism
Seneca: Letters from a Stoic
The Juanes Module

Juanes just needed his own mod. Who can disagree.
Another Angry Rant by Zanzibar
Tuesday. 9.2.08 1:01 am
Due to recent events, I have a few choice words for people who cheat on their spouses and significant others:
Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot.

For the sake of the English language, I will henceforth refer to only "spouses" and use the English neuter "he" with the implicit awareness that it could be a significant other or spouse of either gender.

Let me make this clear:

You cheating on your spouse is your fault. It is always wrong. It isn't your spouse's fault for ignoring you or not "fulfilling your needs" or even being a jackass to you. Your spouse could be doing all of these things and none of them justifies cheating on him.

In fact, the activities and character of your spouse are completely independent variables that do not affect in the least the internal "Will I cheat?" equation.

Cheating or not cheating comes completely from within, completely from whether or not you have the fundamental integrity and self-respect not to engage in activities which are morally wrong.

If you think to yourself, "I can't cheat on him, because it would make him sad/angry" or perhaps, "I can't cheat on him, because it would hurt him too much," then you have the wrong state of mind. The internal dialogue should be, "I can't cheat on him, because I am not that kind of person." "I would never cheat on him, because I value my honor too greatly to dirty it by such a petty and morally reprehensible act." Otherwise, you will continue cheating on your partners, waiting for "The One" who will be so great that it will never even enter your mind to want someone else. There is no one that great. No one will ever be able to fill that space, especially since you will have been spending a great many months and years training your eye to see people outside your relationship instead of focusing on what you have.

So your spouse is a jackass. Perhaps he's even cheated on you! SO DUMP HIM ALREADY. If you can't keep your insane libido in check for as long as it takes to dump him, you have other more serious issues with self control.

This isn't targeted at anyone in particular, mind you, I have been planning to write it for the past several weeks after meeting some particularly disgusting examples of the human race for whom such activity is apparently commonplace. But if you see yourself in it, by all means be offended by it. Alternatively, you could grow a pair and do what is right.

In the manner of MoDS,

That is all.

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The Worst Shower Ever
Sunday. 8.31.08 8:49 am
So I was in my hostel in Reykjavik, and I decided to take a shower. The showers are all in common bathrooms off the hallway. The water in Reykjavik is heated almost completely using geothermal sources, so it is always quite toasty. Sometimes it smells faintly of sulfur, though.

The shower had the normal large mosquito-catchers perched around the inside, and one large, dead spider caught between the wall and the wall of the next shower, but experience had showed these to be harmless, so I was unworried. Like most European showers, space was extremely limited, with very little room to move about. It occurred to me that perhaps this was why European women didn't shave their legs... they couldn't reach them without being a contortionist.

The shower knobs were also a little tricky: a very slight turn could mean a big difference in shower temperature, and it didn't say which one was hot and which was cold, or which way you turn them to get yourself more of either. The shower head was of the type that came off its cradle so you could hold it like a paddle.

So it was that I turned a wrong knob. The water turned very hot and started to burn me. I quickly turned the cold knob. The wrong way. The water turned scalding. There was no where in the shower where I could move to escape the stream of water. I reached up and grabbed the shower head to turn it into the wall. Instead it fell off its cradle. It hit the ground and started spinning around wildly about its cord, scalding my legs on every pass. The pain was blinding! I had to escape! I opened the door to the shower and stepped out on the the floor. I slipped catastrophically and fell against the stall door. I finally came crashing to the ground. The shower head had turned so that it was spraying burning water in an arc right out the door of the shower and onto my body. I grabbed the shower head and pointed it back into the shower. I had cut my foot all the way down the top, and it was bleeding. Another cut was between my toes and one on the bottom of my foot, perfect for the floor of a hostel bathroom. As I lay on the floor, a mosquito came and landed on my fried, red, still burning and exposed leg.
I killed it.


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Images of Iceland
Saturday. 8.30.08 4:10 pm
Here is Sebastian and the waterfall from the story.

And here is Sebastian above the camp.

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Back on the Grid
Wednesday. 8.27.08 1:25 pm
I'll be catching up on everyone's entries as soon as possible.
Right after I have a personal dance party.
You don't know how hard it is to go for an entire month without a personal dance party in my kitchen.

Step up, so you can get down.

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A Luau in Washington
Wednesday. 8.27.08 1:10 am
"Those were crazy days," the volcanologist said. He looked at me from beneath a wide-brimmed leather hat festooned with a brightly-colored woven band.

"When Mount St. Helens went, the USGS just said, 'use as much money as it takes'. They don't do that anymore. We used to work 18-hour days right after the eruption, and for several months afterwards.
"Then at the end we had a big party... a luau. We flew in a pig by helicopter and buried in the pyroclastic flow [deposits of hot ash that roars down the side of the volcano as a cloud of glowing embers when the column of ash periodically collapses]. Those pyroclastic flows were still quite hot at the time-- one girl we were with punched the through the top of one and badly burned her leg and had to be taken to the hospital.
"But we buried the pig just like you do in Hawaii, and we had a bunch of thermal couples stuck in there to make sure we got the right temperature. We had to move it a couple of times before it was finally done, and then we flew it by helicopter to the bar where we were having the party. Let me tell you, that was a great party."

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Friday. 8.22.08 9:38 am
Person 1: So what are the Icelanders like?
Person 2: I hear they like to kill things mostly.
Me: And probably drink blood out of their skulls.


Me: So do you have any mermaids in Iceland?
Icelandic Guy: No, we killed them all.
Me: And did you drink blood out of their skulls?
Icelandic Guy: Yup.

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Wednesday. 8.20.08 8:51 am
And now an installment of "Things that make you say, `Are you Fucking Kidding Me?" :::

Me: So you were saying that youre excited about change in the government, what kind of change would you like to see?
Her: Well first, Id like to see the end of this American Imperialism in Iraq!!
Me: So, youd like to see troops being removed from overseas combat?
Her: Uh, yes!
Me: Theyre already doing that, you know.
Her: Yeah... I mean... you see what a good influence Obama is having? Hes practically calling the shots already!!

Random Girl: But in a vacuum, large blocks would go further than small blocks because they are more massive.
Japanese Prof: No, they would travel the same because there would be no air resistance.
German Prof: Yes, thats right...
Random Girl: No, because mass is in the equation for kinetic energy! .5mv^2!
German Prof: Oh yes, I suppose youre right...
Japanese Prof: But, I always thought... (second guessing)
Me: AYFKM? In order to solve for the range you have to solve for the velocity, and to solve for it you set the kinetic energy equal to the potential energy, which also has mass in it, so they cancel out. If you drop two objects in a vacuum, they will hit the ground at the same time, no matter what their shape or mass. Even Galileo knew that, you idiots.
Besides, who in their right mind would challenge an asian professor on a problem that involves MATH, amirite?

edit:: to put this into context, this is kind of like a room full of art history experts debating who painted the Mona Lisa.

Sethifus: Hey, you know that guy who was after you all week?
Me: Yeah.
Sethifus: Did you know hes married and has a three-year-old kid?
Me: AYFKM?????????

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Life Lessons
Monday. 8.18.08 1:33 pm
It all began in the middle of nowhere in the Icelandic highlands with an Italian, an American, a Costa Rican, two Swiss, a bottle of vodka and a pair of dice.

On second thought, perhaps I should tell a different story.

It has always been a fantasy of mine to discover a secret waterfall. When Sebastian suggested that we follow the river into the soft-walled canyon leading into the volcano, a waterfall was not what I expected. But as we clamored over the loose pumice, talus, and ash, we traveled further and further back in time, back to when the volcano was just a tuya, a bit of magma coming out beneath an immense glacier, perhaps some 10,000 years ago. The walls of the canyon became high and dark, with stacks upon stacks of pillow lavas, which are usually found when a volcano erupts deep within the sea, but in this case occured where the magma was making its own tiny ocean beneath the ice. He was a reckless sort, always sliding about on the steep slopes and perching on the highest points. I was leading, but really I was following him; his presence made me reckless and invincible, and I slid down slopes and jumped over chasms as my fear and practical nature melted away.

And then we turned a bend and there was the waterfall, our own secret waterfall, cascading out of a notch in the pillows and beating a deep pool into the lava layers below. There was also a wide, wispy waterfall facing it, coming right out of an aquifer in the rock and disappearing before it reached the surface. We leaped around the waterfall, throwing pumice into the pool and watching as it bobbed and then floated away.

We made our return along the river instead of on the trail, jumping from side to side and hiding under a large polygonal snowbank that hadnt yet melted. He suggested that we climb up a very steep, loose slope to an outlook. In some places there were caves below the ash on the slope from glaciers which have melted out from underneath and which collapsed when you stepped on them. But since he suggested it, I agreed, and we tramped up the slope and loped over the crevasses to the highest point, where he whistled at the people in the camp way below until they acknowledged how deliciously high above them we were.

And Sebastian and I returned to camp, unharmed, and I could add this adventure to the many adventures Ive had that have taught me this valuable lesson about traveling:

You can do a lot of really stupid things, and nothing bad will happen to you.

More later on how you can do things that dont seem so stupid and die from them.


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