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Driving back to my house, the wounds of the day still fresh, I lit up another cigarette, my first and now, my only, love. I opened the window in the brisk-alright, cold-February air, and let the music coming through the radio mingle with it. The band sang songs of love lost, and I stopped paying attention to it a few seconds into the second chrous. ]I didn't need someone else's pain to amplify my own].

As I pulled into my parents' driveway, my headlights reflected on the freshly falling snow. I walked to the doorway, fumbling in my pants for the keys, and felt a few flakes fall on the back of my neck, where my coat didn't quite reach up to my hairline. My hand halfway to the lock, I closed my eyes for a moment, letting the winter take my body heat. A deep breath stolen, and then back to reality. Up in my room, my old room where I'd lived for nineteen years, and then returned to recently, I stripped to my boxers and plopped on my bed. Before I knew it, I was asleep...

Waking up, I was entangled in my blankets, with the sunlight streaming in and illuminating the small pile of clothes from the night before. Slightly disoriented, I sat up and took a drink from a water bottle from some bygone era that was sitting next to my bed. My mouth tasted of cigarettes, and when I went to the bathroom to look in the mirror I saw a smear of her lipstick next to my lips. All of yesterday came flooding back. I gripped the sink. Vaguely wished I had just remembered it all night; now it felt brand new, the pain resurfaced just as strong as last night. Fuck.

Getting in the shower, I rethought my plans. I used to have grandoise ideas of going to college, getting a nice job, partying all night. Getting married. A cynical smile crossed my face. Don't get me wrong: this breakup fucking sucked. But it was only the most recent event in a downward spiral that had been going on for a while. One that I had no intention of stopping, not now. I had quit school in a fit of rage, anger with the path I was taking. I had gotten fired from my job, the fucking office shit that it was. I had stopped caring months before, coming in smelling of alcohol and cheap bars, fresh from an hour and a half earlier, as I caught a cab directly to work so I wouldn't be late. I gave my boss the finger when he laid me off. Called him every name in the book. Not because I was angry with having lost the job, per se. He was just the slimeball that I could project my hate onto. Little prick. Thought I was going to hit him; he had called security. Naturally I made my exit as spectacular as possible, considering he thought it appropriate to treat me like some random thug, instead of the programmer who had sacrificed countless weekends to the company's godforsaken altar.

I had tried the path that society wanted me to take, and had failed spectacularly. Now was the time to try my own path...
I think it's been almost a year and a half since I've written anything on E2.

You see, the problem with being dramatic, is no one really cares. Now I know, "no one really cares" is the kind of thing you can say in a really dramatic way, but pretend I'm not that dramatic for a minute.

I don't believe in god. All my life I claimed to be agnostic despite the fact that at some point in my childhood I stopped believing in invisble men that can help me. It was about a year and a half ago that I figured out what happens when you die. That was what was keeping me away from atheism. I couldn't imagine there being nothing.

I'll admit, at the time of the following discovery I was pretty depressed and spending a lot of time in bed. That doesn't change the rightness of what I now feel. You see, I woke up and two hours had just passed. It hit me that that was what death was like. You go to sleep, you don't dream, and you never wake up. So simple.

Now I have that atheist's arrogance about how stupid religion is. There is a great write up somewhere on E2 about the difference between an agnostic and an atheist. I recall a comparision to orange soda. I wish I knew where that was, I'd link it for you.

You. I keep saying that. Who are you?

See, I moved to Las Vegas and all my friends didn't So I send a bunch of them random e-mails frequently to keep them a little updated on my life. But I never save anything I send out. Why? (shrug) So I was thinking I might just write random crap here in the day logs, then I can tell all my friends to check out E2 for random crap about my life. Sure, e-mailing them is a little easier for them, but this way I get to keep a record as well. I like reading the crap I wrote a year and half ago. Okay, maybe not reading it...but glancing at it and remembering that time. Why? Who cares?

Not you. We've gone over this. No one really cares. But people do care about a lot of random crap. And that's what I like about E2. It's this big advertisment thing. At least well written nodes are. In general I hate linking things for emphasis. I'd like to pretend that all links are useful, at least in some situations.

Take this write up. Four links. And they all go somewhere. Somewhere specific. If for some reason you want to read about Las Vegas, atheists, or agnostics, you can just click and there you go. If you click on the nothing up there you'll go where I think of when I see that word. Cool stuff.

Anyway, I think I might write some logs on here just to BS. Eventually I might try real noding again.

Do you know how much I love you?

I asked that question of you once. I didn't expect an answer.

But I got one, here, now, in the personification of panamaus.

He's moved here, to Santa Barbara, California, on the strength of his own will.

And yet ... and yet ... and yet ... part of why he's here is part of why I'm here. Part of who he is is part of who I am.

We're both here for the same reasons. I got here a'fore he, but he be here for the same reasons I be here.

Would he be here were not I here a'fore he? I don't know. I do know what lies ahead of him, because, in 1989, those things were ahead of me.

This is too cool. This is too scary. My home is his dream. My dream is his home. Now. Here. Whoa.

Welcome, to California, panamaus.

Hail and well met.

Oh, never mind. I'm trippin'.

Perhaps uniquely amongst the people on Everything2 I have never smelled the stench of death. I have led a sheltered life and have so far avoided this, and I believe that society in general is moving in my direction, until one day people who are terminally ill will be locked up out of sight until they die, and the fact of death will be erased from the collective mind, and thus we will become immortal; not literally so, and not individually immortal, but as a species we will believe that death does not afflict us, only the animals. We approach the iron face.

I have never seen a dead penguin. Not in real life or in a documentary programme on the television. Obviously, penguins die - even in the polar cold, things degrade - but it does not cross my daily mind that such a thing happens. I think of penguins only in terms of living penguins, whereas my thoughts of elephants and rabbits are coloured by my knowledge that such creatures are poached, or hit by cars. When I contemplate a rabbit I eventually come round to the image of a smashed rabbit corpse resting in the gutter, but I do not have an equivalent mental image for a penguin, and thus penguins have a certain immortality in my mind, and perception is everything.

When the penguins are extinct and I write the history of their being, I will not mention that they die; and thus, future generations will believe that an immortal creature waddled o'er the cold earth. They will wonder why penguins do not exist in their time - if they are immortal, how come there are none left? They will begin to doubt the history books, just as man, having learned that the blue sky is not infinite and that the lights were merely stars, began to doubt the church. And this will lead to revolution, bloody, drawn-out revolution. And death. The denial of death is the triumph of death.

Therefore, to avoid this, it seems the logical solution would be to embrace the fact of death, as our ancestors once did. The Aztecs positively revelled in the worship of death, and were eventually consumed by it; the Victorians posed their dead children for photographers; whilst the urban populations of many western nations seem to glorify death and killing in action, song and film. I believe this is where hope lies, as eventually all of Earth will be an urban area. The future is not open spaces and flights to the moon; the future is the inner city everywhere, with shootings and killings as a daily fact of life. We should revel.

Death is a natural part of being human; without it, we would have had no incentive to develop language, for language is the communication of ideas from one generation to another, for we are all sinking vessels, filled with cargo. The cargo would sink with us were it not for speech and writing. If we lived forever, we would never have needed to communicate with others; each of us would be an island, content and placid, like rocks. Death makes our lives shorter and more intense; it spurs us on, the knowledge that time is finite. Too often the achievements of youth are overshadowed by the embarrassment of a drawn-out middle and old age; parents saddle their children with all kinds of burdens and preconceptions - "they fuck you up, your mum and dad" - and, as with Philip Larkin, I believe that society would benefit from their removal.

If our bodies were such that the act of copulation was invariably lethal to the male and the act of childbirth was invariably lethal to the female, the human problem would be resolved. There would be no psychosis from "beyond-life" (the generation beforehand), and we would not have the misery of watching our replacements surpass us. The population would be small enough for the Earth to be a paradise, although this will require us to eliminate all natural competition and create machines to produce food, as the knowledge of farming and hunting would be gone. We would live short, intense lives of magic and wonder and happiness, without the knowledge of death. This will happen; whether it is tomorrow or the day after does not matter for it is inevitable. We can try to hold it back but the waters will break. Better to dive in.

Be the river.

So much snow. Not that I even really mind but for the cold that accompanies. It's harsh beauty touches me, really. I have always had an affection for that brutal type of gorgeousness. What really gets my goat, though, is that even though the scale says Im four pounds less fat and I feel it, my fucking jeans are the tightest they've ever been. Seriously, now, what the fucking fuck??

Gonna drive away today. I like going on these mini road trips. Everywhere you drive here is like a mini road trip since nothing is really that close. I enjoy driving. It's monotony is soothing. And in good company you're pretty much gauranteed a swell time.

I really want to go to the fabric store today as well. I'm feeling the need to make things. I have no clue what. I've been thinking about taking up knitting just for the hell of it. So satisfying, the creating of things. Something where there was nothing. It gives me a huge sense of self satisfaction in these days where i may as well be sucking the definition out of the word productivity. I so often feel like the anti-accomplishment. It's all i can do to keep myself from taking up smoking again. Well, the tobacco kind anyway. I'd give my left tit for a sticky bowl pack.

When I am king, Linear Mathematics will be the first against the wall.

I've seen a lot of maths problems in my time, and I'm quite used to not being able to do some of them. It happens all the time, I mean, I've looked at all the hard equations that are famously unsolvable, I've tried (and failed) to prove FLT - who hasn't? - and I've been to IMO training and back, so I'm no stranger to failure. But usually failure in a situation where it's okay to fail. Where the problems are either a) MEANT to be insanely hard or b) from a region of maths I've never studied and therefore don't understand, which makes it okay to fail.

The thing about my current Linear Mathematics question sheet that makes me very, very angry indeed, is that technically I'm supposed to be able to do the questions. Or at least, some of them. Or, I don't know, one or two. Is one so much to ask? Out of 13 questions I've done three and a half. One of these was copied out of my notes (that's what it says to do in the question). I'd be lying if I said I understood half of what I wrote. At least one of the others is DEFINITELY wrong. The remaining one and a half are probably also wrong. One of the questions I've been totally unable to solve has a minus sign next to it, indicating that it is supposed to be relatively easy, which only makes me feel more angry.

I'm fairly sure I'm not entirely at fault here. My lecturer writes things which as far as I know could be complete garbage, at a ludicrously high speed and with very little explanation. He also writes in all four directions, going backwards and forwards across blackboards, editing previous writings, making his work confusing to follow. There is no structure to his lectures; he'll write three boards of material without explaining what he intends to prove by it. He rarely gives worked examples. My notes - copied symbol for symbol, it's the only way to do it - are as incomprehensible to me as the lecture was, however much I study them.

I haven't a clue what the rules are in linear maths. I know the rules to algebra; I know the rules to calculus; I know what you're allowed to do in number theory and geometry, but linear maths deals with insane, utterly abstract concepts like minimal polynomials, vector spaces and endomorphisms. Every question I look at, I don't know how to even begin to approach. I can just about write the question out.

sam512 is not a happy bunny. sam512 is about ready to kill someone.

Today's Headlines

US News

Governors Question Medicaid Changes
Yesterday, the Bush administration tried to enlist the nation's governors to support the campaign to redefine Medicaid, but the governors refused to support the changes unless the president is more clear about the "fine print" of the changes. The proposed program gives much of the control over the Medicaid program to individual states. The Medicaid program provides health care to 41 million low-income Americans.

Rhode Island Fire Investigation Continues
The investigation into the nightclub fire in Rhode Island that killed 97 people last week continues, with scrutiny intensifying on the club's owners. Rhode Island's attorney general Patrick Lynch said in a press conference yesterday that the brothers who owned the club were "not forthcoming" in cooperation with the investigation, and a grand jury to investigate the cause will be empaneled on Wednesday. Members of the band Great White, who were performing at the club when the fire began and lost guitarist Ty Longley in the blaze, have already been subpoenaed to appear before the grand jury.

Manhattan Tries To Get Grip On Homeless
In an attempt to gauge the homeless problem in the New York City borough of Manhattan, the city's Department of Homeless Services sent out more than a thousand volunteers in the middle of the night last night to count the homeless. The city was divided into pieces measuring about 2% of a square mile, and each volunteer was assigned to a section. Future plans include expanding the effort to the other New York City boroughs and doing the count annually.

International News

US, Great Britain, Spain Introduce New Iraq Resolution
The United States, Britain and Spain introduced a new draft of a Security Council resolution today declaring that Iraq has squandered its "final opportunity" to voluntarily disarm. The draft lays the legal and political groundwork for a US-led military invasion of Iraq. US and British officials describe the introduction of the draft resolution as the beginning of the final push to win Security Council backing for a decision to go to war. French president Jacques Chirac and German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder are leading the opposition to this measure.

One Dead, Nine Injured in Attacks on Beijing Universities
Explosions caused by homemade dynamite tore through cafeterias at Peking and Tsinghua universities in Beijing, China within hours of each other this morning. There is no known motive or claim of responsibility for the attacks. Liu Wei, spokesman for the Public Security Bureau, said, "Initial police investigations show the two explosions were caused by homemade black powder dynamite," then declined to comment further.

North Korea Tests Missile On Eve Of South Korean Succession
On the eve of the inauguration of South Korea's president Roh Moo Hyun, North Korea launched a short range missile into the Sea of Japan as a none-too-subtle reminder of the ongoing tensions between the nation and the West. The US State Department played down the issue, stating that the missile was part of a routine training exercise, but many question the timing of the missile launch.


Home Depot Beats Earnings Estimates
During their fiscal fourth quarter, ending February 2, Home Depot reported a profit of $686 million, or $0.30 a share, which beat the Wall Street consensus estimate of $0.27 a share. The company also reported a record annual profit of $3.7 billion, amounting to $1.56 per share. Analysts call this positive news, especially in light of the weak holiday season that just passed.

Ahold Faces Corporate Accounting Scandal
Dutch food producer Ahold admitted yesterday to vastly overstating earnings in the last two years, and announced the resignation of the CEO and COO of the company and a number of suspensions. Investigations are focusing on where exactly income had been booked prematurely in the Ahold organization. Ahold stocks plunged 63% in Amsterdam upon the news.

AOL Time Warner's Book Division Up For Grabs
Random House and HarperCollins both offered preliminary bids to purchase AOL Time Warner's troubled book division, the company revealed yesterday. The company is hoping to raise $400 million for the arm, which includes Warner Books and the literary Little, Brown imprint. Thus far, the Random House bid seems to be a better fit, according to AOL Time Warner representatives.

Science & Technology

Microsoft Offers Program To Ease XP Deployment
In an attempt to increase the installed base for their Windows XP operating system, Microsoft is unveiling today a new website with revamped tools which the company hopes will help IT workers make the switch. The new site, found at http://www.microsoft.com/desktop/ includes tools to discover whether or not current applications will function under Windows XP Professional. The goal of the program is to demonstrate the strong compatibility of Windows XP with older applications.

NASA Solves 50 Year Old Moon Mystery
Early in the morning of November 15, 1953, an amateur astronomer, Dr. Leon Stuart, captured a photograph of a large plume of white vaporized rock rising from the moon's surface. Stuart's theory was in question for fifty years until yesterday, when NASA scientists demonstrated evidence for the crater resulting from the explosion, which was caused by a tiny asteroid impacting the moon's surface.

Another Microsoft Outlook Virus Spreads
The latest in a series of Outlook-based viruses has circulated Asia and Europe on Monday, but is being slowed as US companies update their virus protection software. The Lovegate.C virus sends an email to two Beijing email addresses, as well as copying itself to all entries in a person's address book when activated. The same advice applies here as before; don't activate email attachments unless you're sure of their origin and have updated antivirus packages.


Firm Pushes For Approval on AIDS Vaccine For Minorities
VaxGen, a company that made an experimental AIDS vaccine that was only effective in treating AIDS in minorities, is continuing to push for government approval of the vaccine. VaxGen chief executive Lance Gordon said, "If we announced to the world that we were abandoning the project because the study failed in whites, we'd be crucified."

Childhood Asthma On Rise
The EPA reported yesterday that there has been a significant increase in childhood asthma over the past two decades, and that one in every twelve women of childbearing age have blood mercury levels that could hinder fetus development. The EPA blames the increase in asthma on reduced air quality for the youth of America, due to a more indoor-based lifestyle than the previous generation.


Yzerman Returns To Lead Red Wings To Victory
Steve Yzerman made his season debut for the Detroit Red Wings last night as the team defeated the Los Angeles Kings 5-4. The longtime Red Wings leader had been out for the season due to surgery on his right knee, missing the first 61 games. Yzerman did not figure into any of the team's goals.

America's Cup on Alert After Terror Threats
A letter containing cyanide and threatening a terrorist attack on the America's Cup yachting finals in Auckland if there is war in Iraq was discovered by New Zealand police. The packages, containing white powder, were sent to the Australian high commission, the British high commission, the US embassy, and the New Zealand Herald newspaper.


Grammy Ratings Up Sharply
24.9 million viewers tuned into the Grammy awards Sunday night to watch Norah Jones sweep the awards. Last year, the show had under 19 million viewers. CBS attributed the ratings bump to a switch to Sunday evening, as well as additional attention due to possible anti-war protests and strong performances from Simon and Garfunkel, Bruce Springsteen, and Eminem, among others.

Dan Rather To Interview Saddam Hussein
CBS's Dan Rather has scored an exclusive interview with Iraq president Saddam Hussein. The interview, taped Monday in Baghdad, will air the interview on 60 Minutes II this Wednesday evening. According to CBS, during the interview, Saddam challenges US president George W. Bush to a live international television and radio debate about the looming war, envisioning it as being along the lines of a US presidential debate.

And Now, Some Typical Daylog Fare

Well, Saddam Hussein has challenged George W. Bush to an internationally televised debate about the looming war, leading to another publicity win-win situation for Saddam in the Arab world. If Bush doesn't accept, then Bush looks like he's declining fair debate on the issue and is slapping the Arab world in the face. If Bush accepts, that means to the Arab world that Iraq and the United States are on the same level as world powers. If Bush were smart, he'd offer a debate between Saddam and a high-level eloquent speaker from the Bush administration. Colin Powell, anyone? I'd pay top money to see that one.

But what if the Bush-Hussein debate actually did happen? I think it would be beneficial for the entire world if it did.

The United States is a nation like any other nation in the world. We have laws within our own borders that are our own business, not the business of others. However, the same respect should be accorded to all other nations in the world.

Apparently, George W. Bush doesn't have this level of respect for other nations. Thus, I think a debate on a world stage with Bush standing before the people of earth would be appropriate. To simply watch the connection being made in George W. Bush's mind as he attempts to answer one simple question would make it clear to the people of the world, and hopefully to Bush as well, how important such a "mind your own business" tenet really is.

The question?

How would you react if the United Nations ordered you to not fly airplanes in half of your nation's airspace under threat of being shot down and imposed enough trade embargoes to strangle your nation's economy because you were suspected of having "weapons of mass destruction"?

See, the United States does have weapons of mass destruction. A great number of them. And, by his actions, the answer to the above question doesn't matter to George W. Bush. Not at all.

And to address the handful of e2ites who have been trying to cajole me into ridiculous statements...
I refuse to stoop to calling George W. Bush a Zionist crusader.
Bush is simply doing what he (or at least his advisors) think is the right thing to do. However, it is a serious problem if he is doing this against not only the wishes of his own country, but the wishes of the world community as well, and that seems to be the case.

Judging is in full swing and here are the almighty Judge C's comments on some contestants so far.

Miss Democratic Republic of the Congo, AKA LaggedyAnne has done an excellent job telling us about this huge country. A pleasant chatty style combined with a series of meaningful facts and interesting tidbits makes this emminently readable. A nice short overview of the country's history rounds of this commendable entry and a final ps encouraging an end to hunger is most comforting, I haven't had lunch today and I am ravenous.

Miss Suriname, AKA Scribe has taken a revolutionary approach to the round. Her fact packed summary provides us with astonishing detail all in the guise of a life study of a young Surinamese lady and her lover. While the write up struggles to provide as full a picture as other entries its innovative style and approach lend it an interesting edge. I have heard mutterings from the more traditional judges, particularly the American and Russian members of the team that they are dissapointed at this departure from a well established tradition of these Pageants but I have taken to this plucky young competitor.

Miss Spain, AKA OckerJoe has chosen a toughy in tackling the complex history of this nation. He struggles slightly from trying to include a little too much detail and his geography section is extremely confusing. I would also beg to differ that any of the people listed under "What has Spain done for me?" have done anything for me at all, regardless of their artistic, literary or musical achievements. Finally unless Miss Spain makes more effort to check her grammar and punctuation I may be tempted to sabotage those 4 inch stilletos and cause a spectacular fall.

Miss Serbia, AKA CatherineB has managed to deal with a country that has only just decided where it is. She deals comprehensively with the complex and war torn history of the nation managing to make it interesting despite the stream of forgettable accented names. I was slightly dissapoited to see very little information about Serbian culture and the land itself. An excellent and informative write up but perhaps lacking that personal touch.

Miss Ethiopia, AKA izubachi tells us the fascinating history of this once mighty African nation. Again there is little about the country itself or its culture but the history certainly grabs the attention. A commendable effort.

Miss Federated States of Micronesia, AKA Orange Julius here we see the talent of quality country selection. However Miss F. S. Micronesia does not stop there, she gives a stunning overview of every aspect of this unique nation. We learn about early settlers, its history, its fascinating culture and its place in the modern developing world. Most importantly of all we hear about the Yapese and the Chuukese Lovestick, superb.

I'm on a high, on a high...there's nothing more to it!

I lost another pound between saturday and today! My skin condition is still prominent on my abdomen, but it seems to be clearing up a bit around my chest.

The relationship prognosis is still unclear. We spent the day together eating, shopping, walking the streets of NYC with some trepidation and finally ending it with a kiss from my friend's courtyard as we took in the city skyline.

We said our goodbyes at the train station, his kiss ambivalent. I stared at the subway map, as unsure of my next destination as I was of his affections.

In honor of panamaus' relocation to the West Coast, I have composed this song.

Okay, okay, I didn't really compose a song. It's basically just Van Halen's "Panama". Only instead of shouting "Panama" you shout "Panamaus". Here goes:

Whonk, whonk, bump-ba-da whonk, whonk

He got electric shiny jeans,
He got the fever, eating up the collard greens!
Ah-choo, burning down the avenue,
You better...um...da, da, da...whoa...

Something, something...

Wah na na wah na na...


Whonk, whonk, whonk-wa-da

PANAMAUS, whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh...

He...no, wait. It...this...

Crap. Let me work on this a little more and I'll get back to you, okay? Trust me, when this is finished it'll ROCK YOUR MOM.


When I went outside to get some lunch, preferably a fish taco from Rubio's, it wasn't raining. It was a bit cloudy in San Diego, and maybe a little windy, but no rain on the horizon.

I brought my nice, warm overcoat, a good cloth one that I got for my visits to New York, but I didn't bother with my umbrella.

Sometime between getting my order and getting out of there, it started pouring. My overcoat protected me from the brunt of the storm, but the rain ran down my collar and into my undershirt. Now my undershirt is wet, cold, and clammy and it won't dry off.

There's a cosmic lesson to be learned from all this somewhere, but I don't quite understand it yet.

briglass revisits some of last weekends top headlines! Excuse me if they are a bit offensive.  It's like how I deal with situations, or something.

17-Year old Jessica Strasomethingorother Dies

Poor ethnic child dies at the mercy of historically white Duke University... coincidence? Or effective way?

Jessica, who sat atop the nation's waiting list for transplant organs during her week long ordeal in the belly of the White Devil (actually, Blue Devil, but not like Adam can see blue) suffered complete brain damage. Hours later, when asked if they would like to donate her organs, Jessica's parents declined. It reminds me of that movie "Pay it Forward."  Acute organ failure destroyed one girls life, which in turn destroyed another three!

Rhode Island Pyrotechnic Display Fiasco

Also known as: THE GREATEST ROCK SHOW EVER! While watching a CNN news broadcast of a similar incident at a predominantly black Chicago night club, Mike Howlinski and Patrick Donnaro enjoyed quite a chuckle at the expense of twenty three dead black people, "Gosh dang, bro! Thems black people is so DUMB! Hey, Pat, you'll never believe it but I just scored these TOTALLY KICK ASS front row tickets to Great White this weekend!" Howlinksi's final words were, "I'm so high on ecstasy I can't feel the shooting pain I would normally feel from this fire which is consuming my body! Stop and drop this roll, baby! Oh my God I'm completely aflame. That chick is HOT, naw,I'm just kidding. Get it, she's HOT." Howlinksi then collapsed into a pile of human char, making sure to open his mouth wide as his final death throe to facilitate the recovery of his dental records.

Donnaro, who narrowly escaped the club before the entire building collapsed from the fire, exclaimed upon reaching the parking lot, "Oh my Lord God, that.... show.... was.... AWESOME!" Donnaro told reporters that he didn't know that "scalping tickets" could also refer to tickets being fire-branded onto people's scalps after a searing roll in the snow.

Lead singer and band leader of Great White, Jack Russell, proclaimed that the band would never play again. Asked for his reason, Russell simply explained that all ninety-six of their fans were now dead. "Those who made it out alive, come on, they aren't our real fans. First of all, only pussies stand near the back of the crowd. Secondly, our drummer died, so that's like a problem because I can't sing worth shit ever since I quit injecting cocaine in '93." Russell said that the most ironic part of the evening was that the band had just finished playing their hit song, "Burnin' House of Love."  "No, I'm serious, that's not a joke," continued Russell, "we really did have a song named that. If you ask me, that's pretty fuckin' hilarious. Our hearts go out to the victims and their families, but not any dead groupies... sluts for real."

How many Rhode Island club goers does it take to screw in a light bulb?

Toys 'R' Us Roof Collapses

Snow drifts atop the roof of a Toys 'R' Us in... somewhere in America I assume... caused a portion of the roof to collapse, effectively trapping a group of ten shoppers.... the luckiest toy shoppers ever.

"It was classic," recounts Yolanda Brown, area woman, "one minute I was standing there envisioning myself as a child with nothing to do but play with this fun looking 'Lifesize' Barbie Malibu Convertible Toy Car, when all of a sudden the entire roof collapsed around me. I thought to myself, oh Lord Jesus, I'm trapped!.........  IN A TOYS 'R' US!" Brown realized that nine other adult shoppers were in her same situation. "We were ecstatic," explains Bush Perthington, area man, "Some of the group wanted to return the cries for assistance we could hear coming from the rescue workers but we shut them up, quick. 'SHH!' I yelled." Jennifer Scall, area woman, admits that "it was probably the coolest thing to happen to me since I was trapped inside a closed frozen yogurt stand for a weekend when I was twelve. It's like, as long as you have enough air supply, there's nothing to do except eat as much Frogurt as possible." Scall said at first she feared the group would run out of food, however Brown quickly pointed out that they could subsist on Easy Bake Ovens and Pop Rocks. "We did the calculations and figured we could survive for twenty days solely on melted snow and half-edible brownies. If we got bored, we could put Pop Rocks on the brownies. Or, just eat the Pop Rocks alone, or put Pop Rocks in the snow, whatever floats your boat," recalls Brown.  Scall remembers when one of the group members, Jonathon Radcart, suggested he and four other of the trapped join into an alliance and try to out-survive the others. "After he said that I shot him in the head.... with a cap gun.  We all had a good laugh," said Scall.  Scall's daughter, Jennifer, 7, spoke with reporters outside the complex during the search, which took most of the afternoon. "This is so stupid, I know mom is in there," testified Jennifer. "When she saw the roof collapsing, she scooted underneath." Eventually, the search party followed the Electronic Uno Simon Says Bobble Game sounds and found and rescued the group of ten, who reportedly let out a massive, "ohhhhhhhhhhh, man!"

A Bunch of People in Turkey Died

Yeah, so what.

it feels like i never left...

The show I'm in opens tomorrow night. I'm really excited and at the same time terrified. I haven't actually been in a show since I graduated from high school...about 3 years ago. It's so different to be in costume, makeup, lights, with a microphone again. For so long I was behind the scenes; calling lines, giving stage directions, pulling curtains, running lights, playing an instrument in the pit below the stage, but not right out in front of the audience. Not for a long time. I'm a little nervous as to what it's going to feel like; being in the lights in front of all those people after not doing it for so long.

It's like riding a bike for the first time after a few years. You're shaky the first few minutes, but within seconds it comes back to you; your legs and arms just know what to do, and the grace you used to have comes back threefold.

I'm seeing that in me this week, once they put me in a costume and slathered my face in makeup, shined lights on me and made me sing into a microphone. At first I was more scared than I had been all along. But slowly, every night, it began to feel a little more comfortable, a little less like going into pre-surgery. Then it happened. Last night, and even more so tonight (once I got over the strangeness of my mother sitting in the audience), my body, my voice, my soul remembered what to do. Remembered how good it felt, how natural it was, and the lights, the makeup, the costumes became my friends, helping me achieve even more grace.

It's funny how you don't miss doing something until you do it again.

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