Sunday, October 3, 2010

A Moment of rest

So you may have seen that I finished my Computer Photography project, so my done list for this past week is as follows:
Machine Learning: Homework 1 turned in on monday (I talked about this earlier) Homework 2 is due in 2 weeks, I have already started on it)
Computational Photography: Project 2 turned in. I felt good about this project, but again, I could have worked on this one for a while. It was an ammusing project to work on! Giving Mom tattoo's is always fun! Project 3 assigned and I think it may be due the same day as the ML hw... that would not be good.

Ethnography. This one gets its very own paragraph. So the assignment for this class was to do two hours of passive observations of a transportation situation or technology, then write up what we saw. One thing that has struck me as odd here is the amount of jay walking, and the lack of "push to walk" button in some areas (like the heart of downtown). So on monday I wandered around downtown in the rain for about an hour looking for a coffee shop that overlooked a signal (all I need was to see two of the four crosswalks). I ended up back at a coffee shop that Dad and I stopped at when he was here. So I hung out there for an hour watching Pittsburghers in the rain crossing the street. On Tuesday I headed in to Oakland (the area around PITT) looking for a similar situation. I was able to find basically the same set up at the intersection of Forbes and Atwood (look it up... there is a Starbucks on the corner ;) ). So my results:
Downtown: Crossing with Signal: 88 Crossing without Signal: 170
Oakland: Crossing with Signal: 579 Crossing without Signal: 183
Downtown was the only intersection with a crossing button, it was only used once! Well, if anyone wants to know more, I can send you the paper I wrote about it ;)

So with all of that done by Friday, I had the weekend more or less to relax. Saturday morning I went out on a run (got to get ready for the Donuts Dash!). Around Noon, I headed over to Mitch's house for some Machine Learning fun. We were able to get through one of the five questions, so we felt fairly good about ourselves. The evening I went back to Olive Garden for one last round of Never Ending Pasta Bowl with some people from Church. It was a lot of fun to get to know them a little more, they are all good people.

Today was spent at church or preparing dinner (Chicken Parmesan). Today was Communion Sunday, as you may know, and Shadyside is where it originated! It was sort of cool to be part of that. This evening I went back for some young adult bible study, which was also good.

So I had to renew my Auto insurance. Because I knew I should get a discount for being a student, I went online and filled out a new quote to get an idea of what I should be paying. So then I called the rather nice people at progressive to get all of that set up. The first guy (who was just continuing on my old insurance policy) said that there was going to be a rate increase, I told him that I was currently a student, and he said that didn't really mater in this case, that it did not give me any more of a discount. So I mentioned that I had been quoted significantly less online (like $200 less online), he did not know why, so he transferred me to a quote agent. Long story short, turns out my credit score went from a "mediocre" to an excellent score in the past 6 months (possibly from renting for the first time ever, and Bellevista not having any problems with me). So I ended up getting set up with a new policy that is about half of what I paid before! Yay! Finally I am not paying for being stereotyped as a teenage male driver!

On a completely separate note, last Thursday Larry made Chicken Divan (funny story, I bought all of the stuff and was going to make it, but he informed me that he wanted to make Lasagna for friends on Thursday, and asked to hold off on the Divan. Turns out he changed his mind, and when I got home he had made it!). So this spurred something that surprisingly got under my skin. Like a few people in my life Larry does not like onions and peppers. Ok that is fine. But he asks me all of the time what I know how to make (and some can attest that I have a decent repertoire for a twenty three year old guy). I can list off 20 ish great recipes that I love to make. He has some sort of issue with just about all of them. No Mexican, his digestive track is to weak to handle it, apparently it does bad things every time (his old roommate was sympathetic to this). No beans, "they are just ruffage!" No mushrooms, on the basis of lack of flavor and how they are grown (ok, valid point, mushrooms are a little gross if you think about them as fungus growing in poo, Gramps you would be happy) Also a note for Gramps, No Asparagus, he looked at me funny when I asked if he ever smelled his pee... I don't think he got it. NO SAUSAGE, "It is all the left overs thrown together!" I really want to tell him how pepperoni (his one and only pizza topping) is made... If you don't know I would direct you here. Oh, he also makes fun of me for putting pepper on everything (which I don't, we have just had a lot of corn on the cob, and I put salt and pepper on the corn). So I asked him what he did like, he said "meat and potatoes. You know, American food. Good home cooking." He listed off a number of recipes that he liked, they were all derivations of beef or chicken with a heavy cream cream sauce served with a starch. He said no spices. A meal is not a meal if there is not beef or chicken as the main ingredient. Soups are only starters, you can never have a meal out of a soup. "Chicken and Dumplings" to him are dumplings covered in a chicken cream sauce, not soup. Heaven forbid you by sliced meat. Oh, and on top of all of this, he argues like a first grader; not structuring cogent and logical arguments, just talking loudly over the other person, and refusing to accept that other people could possibly have different views of the world.

He proceeds to continually bash on Mexican food for some reason. Continuously bringing up a bad experience with a Chipolte burrito. I think if he makes fun of Mexican food one more time, I will snap. "Snapping" will include an immediate verbal backlash and a continued diet of consisting only of Mexican food.

So, to those of you I am visiting this Christmas, I am asking for a trade off, ill make you Perogies if you make me a decent Mexican meal.


  1. Mushrooms are not grown in pooh. They are grown in cooked kaka. I know this from living in the Mushroom Capital of California.

    I am seriously considering creating an After Shave Lotion that I am going to call "Essence d'asperges." It is sure to become a best seller. I just am not sure how many guys I am going to need on the production team and how much asparagus I am going to have to cook.

  2. I take it that Larry does not subscribe to your blog ...?!!!

    How is this for the 1st draft of the Christmas menus ... meals to include ...

    Taco bar
    Chicken Enchilades
    Taco salad

    With sides of onions, bell peppers and hot sauce available for everything (don't want Chelsea to hate me!!!)

    Sound like a start??

  3. Sounds great to me! Just remember the beans have to be on the side for Caleb.

    Scottie, do I need to send you any ingredients for "good" Mexican food? Should I send you chili?

  4. It sounds like you have plenty of people taking care of you! :-)