Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Look what came in the mail today!

Both Moose and Frosty approve of this purchase. Look out American Idol....I'll be aiming for you next!!!! :P

Quick review of Pan's Labyrinth

Pan's Labyrinth is one of those movies which I probably wouldn't see for myself just from watching the trailers and such, but after reading Tochi's glowing recommendation on Pan's Labyrinth, I went to the movies with David yesterday to see what this movie is all about. The story revolves around a girl Ofelia who travels with her mother to a military camp run by her mother's new husband, who happens to be the Captain and leader of the camp. World War 2 is still going on and tensions are high at the camp, but Ofelia deals with the tension by putting herself in her own fantasy world. Note that the movie is in Spanish, so you'll have to be quick with the subtitle reading sometimes so you won't miss what happens on the screen (unless of course you have some sort of background in Spanish :P). I agree with Tochi that there're a mix of emotions that go on through the movie, but I don't necessarily agree with him in feeling sorry for the Captain at the end of the story as I think the Captain got what he deserved given the events leading up to the end. But overall, it's a very well done movie! Everything about the movie feels very organic and real, and the spinkles of CG here and there make Ofelia's fantasy world come to life without feeling overly fake. And I really want a piece of magic chalk :) Although, I never figured out who Pan was....

Sunday, January 28, 2007

New Years Resolutions

Grrrr....I hate evening naps (especially due to food coma from a large dinner) since it makes normal sleeping tougher -_- Anyways, to pass the time by I've posted some New Years Resolutions.

1) Graduate within the next year: I feel like I've sort of slacked off a bit going down the Ph.D. road. Granted I've never really learned anything that I'm doing in my Ph.D. while i was an undergrad, but I'm not going to make that an excuse. So time to hit the research book a bit harder.

2) Stay positive: The past couple of years have been sort of a roller coaster ride for me emotionally at times with school and other miscellaneous things. But having the extended time off at the end of December and beginning of January to get away and not worry so much gave me some time to recharge for this year.

3) Do a bit more to take care of myself: Pretty much try to make more of a conscious effort to eat better and keep the body active. The roads in my apartment complex are shaped in a giant oval, so I try to take a walk around the oval every so often to clear my head and get the heart going. My mom bought me a huge Sams Club sized bottle of vitamins, so I also keep reminding myself to take one in the evening.

4) Blog more: Last year, the cove was sort of relegated to random links and such, but I'm doing my best to keep it updated now. It's always cool to get comments, so keep those up! :)

5) Find that special someone: I'm putting this up but I don't think I'll likely follow through with this. It's been sort of tough for me to forget my ex for the past year or so since I'm probably too nice to her at times, but I'm getting over it. Ah well, maybe I'll get pleasantly surprised one day...

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Random act of kindness :)

Whenever David and I can't ever decide where to go for lunch, our default option has always been Cici's Pizza Buffet, and who can't say no to unlimited pizza, soda, salad, pasta, and dessert for $5.99? We've gone there so much that practically everyone who works there recognizes us, in particular the woman cashier who usually works around lunch hours. Today when we went there, the woman cashier said "it's on me" and let both of us through to the buffet without paying although we insisted because it had been a while (maybe a week and a half or so) since we've been there. I guess some days there is a such thing as a free lunch :)

Monday, January 22, 2007

Google Maps hates New Jersey

Sorry Kabitzin. Sometimes, even Google maps can't give you proper directions in New Jersey as pointed out by the Inquirer. Who wants to make 239 U-turns? :P

Sunday, January 21, 2007


It's been a while since snow had fallen in Columbus, so I was sort of surprised but sort of elated to see snow on the ground :) Here's a picture through my apartment back window.

I also watched the first 2 episodes of American Idol this season, and boy, the two episodes from Minneapolis and Seattle were like watching train wrecks for the most part. Even Randy, who has come across as pretty kind in his criticism during the audition period, brought the hammer down on all of the bad acts. So far, I really haven't seen any real standouts that I would pick to be the winner (last year, both David and I said Taylor Hicks would win after seeing his audition :P), so hopefully, the talent in the next few upcoming cities will be a bit better.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Rawk on: Part Deux!

Last weekend (or was it this past Monday?) I used up my Best Buy certificates to pick up Guitar Hero 2 to continue on my eternal quest for Guitar Heroness. Gameplay-wise, it takes what's already a solid game in GH1 and improves upon it by making those pesky Hammer-on/Pull-offs much easier to perform. And believe me, after listening and playing through most of the songs in Medium mode so I can unlock all of them for Quickplay, I think HO/PO mastery will be key to getting through many of these songs. However, I was sort of disappointed in the song selection as there aren't that many memorable songs or good tunes as there were in the first one. But, I foresee many hours dedicated in practice mode (another new feature) to master that theme song from Pulp Fiction as I need to get rid of the constant downstrumming syndrome and utilize the upstrum more often if I'm ever going to make through that song on expert. I did manage to make it through Freebird on Hard on my first try with a 4 star rating. Oh, another sort of cool thing they do at the end of each show is give a print-out of how you did in each section of the song so you can see where you need improvement. So Catnipped, Ender, Tochi, and Velius: the gauntlet has been thrown down, and be prepared for a GH dual in the next Houston meeting!!! (or where-ever it may be :P)

In other news, Blueorca managed to finish posting her pics of our trip to Las Vegas and Death Valley, so take a peek here to see the cool things we saw :)

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


It looks like my commenting system is messed up at the moment. When you post a comment and hit publish, it returns a bunch of jibberish onto the comment screen. Also, even though the comment will publish, the counter fails to increment. Anyways, I'll look into it later today so that my 7 readers out there will be able to continue to express themselves :P

Update: Looks like it fixed itself for now (knock on wood).

Monday, January 15, 2007

What did the terrorist say to Jack Bauer?

"Bite Me!"

And if you watched the first episode of this season's 24, you'll see Jack Bauer aka Count Jackula do his best vampire impression as he gets his first kill of the new season. I actually just started watching 24 from season 5 and enjoyed it quite a lot, but if the first 4 episodes of the new season are any indication of what this season's going to be, 24 will be even better this year :) For those who missed it, hopefully the Fox website'll have previous episodes up so you can catch up.

Being the tennis fan that I am, I'm also paying attention to the 2007 Australian Open which started up yesterday. No real upsets so far (well, 4th seed Ivan Ljubicic went down to American Marty Fish, but Ljubicic's play always seems to disappear during the grand slams), but it's still early...

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Web Brain Teaser of the Day (well, a bunch of them)

Orca showed me this interesting web game where you try to figure your way to get through to each level. It took me a while to get warmed up (with some help from Orca :P), but I managed to get to level 9 13 21. Note though: it requires a lot of URL manipulation.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Yaaaaaaaaaaar! I'd buy that for a dollar!

In an interesting move to avoid any sort of government jurisdiction and copyright laws, the owners of PirateBay.org are attempting to buy the "island" known as Sealand. If you want to donate to their cause, you can visit their site here, but according to Wikipedia, the cost is set at a hefty $977 million dollars. As cool as it sounds, I think I'll set away my future lottery earnings in something else :P

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Introducing the Emmy award winning.....

Sixaxis? o.O While the PS3 controller loses its rumble feature, it can now brag that it picked up an Emmy. Now you're probably thinking hey, how come the Wii didn't pick up this award given the fact that the Wiimote has been built from the beginning to utilize motion and such? After looking into it a bit more, Sony has hardware employees who also happen to be members of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, so I'm guessing that Nintendo has none.

In similar news, it looks like Microsoft also has members in the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences as X-box live also has won an Emmy.

Update: It looks like there was a mixup as Sony actually got the award for the Dual Shock. Also, it looks like Nintendo didn't get snubbed after all as they're listed here in the Emmy list as a winner for "Peripheral Development and Technological Impact of Video Game Controllers".

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Introducing the Apple iPhone

In MacWorld today, Steve Jobs showed the world Apple's first phone, fittingly named the iPhone. The name is simple but it's a bit misleading since not only is this a quad-band cellular phone, but it's also a PDA and iPod all rolled into a thin package. The device itself runs OS X, and the most prominent feature is its 3.5 inch touchscreen, which provides all the interaction to the user with touchscreen buttons and gestures. Cingular will be the voice and data carrier.

All this looks pretty cool to me, but I don't think I'm willing just yet to pony up $499 for a 4GB PDA (or $599 for an 8 GB version) just yet, and I'll wait and see if Apple can deliver on their reported battery life numbers. However, I do want to play with one at the Apple store, but it looks like it'll have to wait till June before Apple starts shipping. Hopefully, Apple has learned from their mistakes with the Newton in creating this device. In the meantime, I'll stick with my simple K1.

Congrats to the Gators

The Florida Gators played like they wanted the championship more than the Buckeyes tonight, and they can laugh at all the doubters who thought the Buckeyes were going to come in and just run over them over. This year's championship lead up very similarly to the 2002 National Championship between Miami and Ohio State, where that year Miami was heralded as the unstoppable juggernaut, and the Buckeyes (sometimes referred to as Luck-eyes) were barely getting past their opponents to wins. The exception was that the 2002 game was much more competitive, and except for the opening kickoff, the Buckeyes looked lost for most of the first half as I watched. I went to pick up David at the airport at the start of the 2nd half, so I didn't see much of the 2nd half, but I figured it would probably be too much of an uphill climb for the Bucks to make unless Florida completely collapsed on itself, which they haven't really done all year.

Despite the loss, I hope Buckeye fans will look back and appreciate what the team has done this year. With the exception of the last two games, the defense played above expectation give the loss of players to the NFL. And Troy Smith managed to turn his life around and gave fans 3 consecutive wins against Michigan, the first OSU QB to do so in a while. If nothing else, this might give next years team some extra motivation to do well with the projected losses of offensive players going to the NFL. Only time will tell...

Sunday, January 7, 2007

Who am I rooting for in the 2007 College Football National Championship?

Although I think this'll be a big test for the Buckeyes given that Florida has played through a very tough schedule and come through with one loss, so the Gators will be battle tested. But I believe if the Buckeyes can play to their potential with Troy Smith leading the offense and the young defense continuing to play big this year, it'll be a happy day for Buckeye fans on January 8th.

I heard from the news that the band'll be doing a double script Ohio on the field. I'm not sure how this is possible given the fact that I think the use the entire band for one script Ohio, but I'm hoping they'll show this on TV for it'll be a sight to see if you've never seen it before.

In other news, the Cal-tech basketball team ended their 207 (no that's not a typo) game losing streak...

Saturday, January 6, 2007

Not quite Viva Pinata...

Although I didn't really have any real wants for Christmas, I got some new members to the Kungfucius animal family.

I got "Frosty" from my aunt who knew I had a small red bull from several Christmases earlier, so she figured she give my small red friend companion to talk to.

Tochi had asked me if I wanted anything from Canada, so I thought for a second and thought "well, they have moose there, so
bring me a moose." So here he is straight out of Canada!

Here's the animal family minding their own business next to my bed. The white tiger on the top left right is on guard.

And no, these animals do not need to fear any shovels...

Friday, January 5, 2007

Wake me up when December ends...

After listening to Green Day's Wake me up when September Ends, I threw together some lyrics to describe my vacation for the past two weeks to go with the song. Sorry if some of the lyric don't flow smoothly. I'm open to any suggestions on improving them :P

Wake me up when December Ends
Lyrics by Kungfucius
Original Song by Green Day

Vacation time has come and past
I wish these good times would always last
Wake me up when December ends

Vegas lights blink bright and fast
As Lady luck brings me cash
Wake me up when December ends

Here I come to Death Valley
Driving under the sun

Geocaching and sightseeing
The fun has just begun

Hunger will try to attack
But Pioneer gravy will fix all that
Wake me up when December ends

New York City calls for me
To spend some time with family
Wake me up when December ends

Then its off to Jersey
For caching, gaming, and half-priced sushi
Wake me up when December ends

Here comes the plane again
Since Houston is so afar
Team Veggie meets up
To game, shoot, and play guitar

Viking Lanes has become an LAN
I'll probably won't sing in public again (22 meg)
Wake me up when December ends

Vacation time has come and past
I wish these good times would always last
Wake me up when December ends

These past two week have been fun
I hope more good times are to come
Wake me up when December ends
Wake me up when December ends
Wake me up when December ends