|Subject:||the real SBC|
Had a paper to present at a conference (BCTM) earlier this week, in Santa Barbra, CA, so I was totally kicking it Laguna Beach style. The talk went pretty smoothly- the best part was I got to get it over with Monday morning. There seemed to be a considerable amount of interest in this particular work, and some of the other stuff I had done before, so that was kindof encouraging. Among the approx, 250 attendees, my research advisor and about 7 other people from my group (with presentations of their own) were there also, as were a handful of people I'd met this summer at IBM.
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( some pics from the trip...Collapse )
Thanks (again), Dan, for the ride to the airport on Saturday. NK picked me up - it was about 5:30 this morning, so that sucked. Been more or less a zombie all day.
On Friday I hung out with Dan at a party over at his neighbor's pink house. Watching beer pong and all that other stuff. Had lots of beers, and I recall that the punch really made my stomach cramp up and hurt. ewww. Becca eventually joined us. Here is a picture of her and Dan completely transfixed watching an extremely competitive game of flip cup.
|Subject:||Fuck you, FDR|
Ok, so I started writing this post over two weeks ago, but never actually got around to posting it - for one reason or another, I've been terrably neglectful of livejournal/myspace lately. I suppose I've either been too tired, too busy, or too hung over - or some simultaneous a combination of the three. Well, I suppose most people would say "fuck it - the shit is too old," but I'm totally not gonna let that hold me back.
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( Sunday, Sept 25Collapse )
( Wednesday, Sept 21Collapse )
( Sunday, Sept 18Collapse )
( Satuday, Sept 17Collapse )
( Friday, Sept 16Collapse )
Friday afternoon I was starting to get that feeling that you get when you know that you're getting sick. By saturday morning it was clear that I had a cold. So, this has been pretty much a pajama weekend at home.
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I was bored, so I googled same satellite maps of my area. Even though I'm leaving in like 3 weeks, I thought I'd share anyway.
( cut, but with kindnessCollapse )
Just discovered this week that roomate has two huge cd binders of DVD-Rs of movies he rented from Blockbuster and ripped over the course of several months. I wish I'd know this earlier this summer; it would have spared me from sitting through shit like Phonebooth from his his rather sparse legit dvd collection on the shelf. So, my pitiful sick self spent the weekend with a pillow, blanket, glass of water, and bowl of soup, on the living room floor in front of the tv. Managed to catch quite a few movies in the process:
Life of Brian
Tears of the sun
Jurassic Park 3
Run Lola Run
Requiem for a Dream
Of the last two, if someone were to ask me which was more depressing, the answer clearly would be Requiem for a Dream. But it was actually Donnie Darko that left me feeling much more depressed, while Requiem for a Dream just left me feeling glad that I wasn't nearly as fucked up as those poor bastards.
I started feeling better day- I think I got through the worst of my cold last night while I slept. Hopefully I'll be feeling in tip-top shape for work tomorrow.
I'm tired. I think I'll get in bed in a few and watch Kill Bill while I try to go to sleep.
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Went to New York City for the weekend. Had to find out what the big fuss was all about. Had an awsome time. Hung out with Erin and her friend Joe, rode subways, cabs, went to delis, and all the other stuff. Went to Coney Island, and then we went to this bar Lit, which we stayed at for 6 hours because they were playing good music. Here are some shitty camera phone pics.
We smuggled 1/2 a bottle of Jim Beam around town with us in a gatorade bottle.
My head and buildings
Erin, from the Spoon show at Coney Island.
Friday night I was actually still in Burlington, and I went to a keg party at Rose's place - her roomate's 21st birthday. A bunch of local college kids there. God these kids were so young. Felt like such the old ass married guy at the party - Frank-the-Tank or something Then I started playing the drinking version of Indian-Texas-Hold-Em, and after the relay chugging contest I had forgotton all about it. Met a kid who was from VT, but actually went to GT, only he was like 4 years younger than me. He was recovering from his second concussion (from working construction or something), so it was his first night in a while back drinking. Good for him- getting back on the horse after a break isn't always easy.
Oh yeah, something kinda funny happened on my drive back home from New York on Sunday- it was like 10pm and I was still about 45 minutes away from my apartment, driving on these dark back-ass country roads,and I really really had to piss, so I started slowing down looking for a good place to pull over where no one would see me and chase me off their property. After a couple minutes I saw this church, so I pulled in behind it and hopped out of the car to piss. But I forgot to set my parking brake so as soon as I turned my back, i heard something and the car was rolling forward down the hill. I chased after it, flung the door open and grabbed the brake before crashing into anything. (I'm in the habit of locking the doors, so i'm lucky I didn't this time). So, well, that's never happened to me before. So, in addition to having had a really fun weekend in nyc, I also feel extremely thankful and appreciative that my honda didn't smash itself into a tree on the way home.
This is a pretty shitty end to a pretty shitty week, but I'm getting over it. Gradually. Overall, work wasn't all that bad - tuesday was more or less a waste, and I ended up staying worried about it all through that particular evening. My mind eats at stuff- pointlessly really. But Wed i was more back on track, work wise.
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( The initial stab to the face came to my attention on Monday, by way of letter from the IRS. Collapse )
Got up bright and early Saturday morning and drove to Montreal (about 1.5 hrs from Burlington VT) with some of the other IBM interns. It was a group of 9 of us total - myself, Peter, Carlos, Fredrick (who, btw, is from Equador, and bears a distinct resemblence, particularly in speech and mannerism, to my beloved Panamanian former college roomate Teo- it was eerie to the point that it was almost like having Teo right there in the group with us), Sangee, Rose, Nina (no relation to my wife, of the same name), and two other girls whose names I can't remember.
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(view of Montreal from the hotel. And it's true- these motherfuckers really do speak french like nobody's business)
( more crappy cam-phone pics and details behind the cutCollapse )
In other news, on Friday I saw Batman Begins. fuckin kick ass.
Oh, and FYI, I bought a ticket and will be flying home to see everyone in ATL the weekend of July 4. If you say you miss me and you mean it, than I better see you that weekend.
A necessary part of being human is enduring hardships and overcoming seemingly insurmountable obstacles. For instance, yesterday morning I locked myself out of my apartment for two hours. Inside the apartment, I had left my wallet, my keys (of course), my cell phone, my watch, and my shoes; this left me with only a pack of cigarettes, a lighter, a pair of bedroom slippers, and a coffee cup.
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The first thing I did when a realized that I'd locked myself out was finish smoking the cigarette that I had gone outside for in the first place. Then, remembering my roomate, Michael, had gone golfing that morning at 8, I spent some time wondering exactly how long it would be before he came back. Then I walked around the complex in my slippers looking for the office. Talked to some people and found out it was offsite, and no one was there on saturdays anyway. After that, I sat on the curb and spent some more time wondering exactly how long it took to go golfing. I watched a bug for a while, and by this time it was starting to get quite warm so I found a shady spot in the grass to sit and be bored out of my fucking mind. At this point, I remembered that the sliding door on our back porch was open, and that I could get in that way. Only problem was, we live on the 2nd floor.
( lj cut to preserve Nathan's Friends page ;PCollapse )
Yesterday was pretty shitty. I talked to IBM payroll, for the second time, about where the hell my paychecks were (one was mailed two weeks ago today- another mailed a week ago today), and found out that my direct depost would not go into effect until the third week of this month, almost a month-and-a-half after my start day! Even though I signed up for direct depost on the 19th of last month, it looks like the info wasn't actually entered into the system until the 4th of this month, and they can't start putting funds into my account until 2 to 3 pay periods after that. FUCK, I said- FUCK FUCK FUCK. Well, that's ok, I still have a couple hundred dollars in the checking account that I can live on until.. Wait, what is that? A check NK wrote just went through leaving me only $9.18 in my account!!? When I saw that yesterday, that's when the shit hit the fan, and I got pretty depressed about the whole thing- not having any money, not knowing when I would have money, wondering where the hell my paychecks were being mailed to. So, NK and I got in our first fight since I've been up here- 2 huge contributing factors: A) my general worry and terrable mood on the whole matter, B) and a massive case of PMS on her part. When I called, I was really just hoping for some calming words of assurance from her (because she always reassures me and makes me feel better about things I'm worried about), but turns out that she started flipping out too (see B above). I ended up hanging up on her and not answering when she tried calling back, because the fact was I really didn't want to think or talk about the whole thing - I just wanted it to go away and stop eating my mind. I was so upset that I couldn't even focus enough to play Halo correcly. Well, after we made up and started talking about other stuff, I felt a lot better- not great, but a hell of a lot better. Oh yeah- when I talked to Payroll I also found out that for some reason in my file they have me listed as a Female, the prefix to my name officially being "Mrs." ...................WTF!?
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Today at work I talked to my manager about the whole thing to see if he could do anything. He was supportive, of course, and said we could call Payroll tomorrow to try to figure out exactly what was going on, and he suggested in the meantime that I just make sure to check the with local post office, something I probably should have done sooner, but was simply too lazy to. Well, after work I went to the post office and did a whole change of address thing even though that was probably not necessary. When I came home and checked the mail- LO AND BEHOLD- there it was in my box: the reissue/replacement of my first paycheck (the origional I had stopped payment on, and of course, still haven't received) - and it only took two days to arrive after it was mailed! Thank God I Have Money Again. So, this is very good news - I know I was probably waayy over-worried about the whole situation, but uncertainty coupled with buerocracy can do that to a little guy like me.
Flash back to Saturday, when I ended up going to the BBQ to socialize with the other IBM interns. It was pretty fun, believe it or not, and we ended up playing vollyball for a couple of hours until it was too dark to see shit. That is more or less out of character for me- to play any form of sport, but it was fun none-the-less. Then a couple of us met up in downtown Burlington to go to some bars. Unfortunatly, most of the interns are not 21 yet (and the bars are really strict about IDs) so it was only three of us- myself, this guy Brian, and this girl Rosemary (her name makes me think of the Interpol song Evil - the one with the video of the really fucked up looking puppet who was in the car crash). Unfortunatly, after I'd already made plans to go out, and had my heart set on it, I remembered that I promised to take my roomate Michael to the airport at 7AM the next morning. He had an interview with AMD in Austin. Well, I told my self I would only stay out until 12:30 or 1, but ended up staying out until 2. Didn't get all that drunk anyway because I had to drive. Brian, on the other hand, started the evening out with a Long Island, and finished it up with another, with a Jaeger Bomb in between. Some some reason it was his first time drinking since December. Why? Hell if I know. Anyway, I was his DD.
Maybe this weekend, equipped with a little extra spending money from my long-awaited paycheck, I'll get blowd out the frame- snort a little coke out of a hooker's ass-crack- whatever people do up here. And maybe Brian will DD, since he owes me one.
Well, I talked to IBM Payroll Services, and found out some interesting things..
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1) I'm paid WEEKLY, which is nice.
2) My first paycheck was mailed Wednesday, May 25, and should have been received Friday May 27. (Of course, it was not)
3) My second paycheck was mailed Wednesday, June 1, and I should have received it yesterday. (Again, this didn't happen).
So, I stopped payment on the first check and requested a reissue. That's not to say I have any confidence in the reissue ever getting to me. If the second check doesn't arrive by Monday or Tuesday at the latest, I'll stop payment on that one as well.
I had the same problem in GA too.. For some reason, everything sent to my name at my correct address was Returned: Undeliverable the the sender, whether that sender be my bank, my mother, whoever. Why? I wish I knew. Speaking with the manager at my local post office branch didn't seem to fix the problem either, at least not immdeiatly. Let me just say, over the past several months I have lost all confidence in something as simple and important as recieving mail, which I guess most people take for granted - bills, paychecks, packages, whatever.., Pretty much, I'll tell you right now, if you mail me something, I probably won't get it. I think my name is cursed or something.. Maybe I pissed some hacker off somehow, so they fucked my name up in the system.
Anyway, as you can imagine, I can't wait for my direct deposit to get set up and I won't have to worry about this shit.
My plans for today, you ask? Well, I'm thinking about popping into work this afternoon for a couple minutes and start some simulations so they will be finished and ready Monday morning. This evening, the IBM interns are having a BBQ, so I'm thinking about going to that. Maybe it will be fun - but being the social retard that I am, who knows. And everyone is talking about this Balloon fesitval up here today and this evening- hot air balloons and such. Why people my age and younger would get so exicted about this, I don't know, but if I find out, I'll tell you.
EDIT: One of the interns posted this link about the balloon fest: www.cvfair.com confirms my suspicions: not really my cup of tea.
Things are different up here. For instance, I was at the grocery store several hours ago, buying food and such, and I happened upon a box of cereal called "Crispy Hexagons." See for yourself.
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As overly technically-detailed a name like "Crispy Hexagons" is, I guess it makes sense, as these are generic brand Crispix, and the name Crispix is probably phonetically abbrviated from 'Crispy Hexagons" (with some liberties taken in spelling...) I bought the box of cereal, not only for the strange name, but also, as a generic brand, it was only $1.50 for the box. I say, let me never be complete. I say, pay over two dollars for a box of cereal, and you're a fool. I say, deliver me from Swedish furniture....
Not a hell of a lot else is going on. I'm still waiting for my paycheck. In the meantime, I'll cherish the complementary IBM t shirt handed me on my first day, for it is more payment than I deserve.
biggest travel weekend of the year, but I haven't been paid yet, so hitting the road or the friendly skies wasn't really an option. so rather than travel I opted sit on my ass and veg out all weekend. Today should be no different. I watched a few movies this weekend- my roomate michael has a fair collection of things I've been meaning to see - I watched X-men 1 and 2 last night, and we watched The Godfather yesterday. He also has all three extended edtions of Lord of the Rings, so I watched Fellowship of the Ring earlier in the weekend. I might watch Two Towers today, that is if I can somehow manage to squeeze it in my schedule between sitting on my ass and sitting on my ass.
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I need to wash clothes. Perhaps I'll do that today.
I actually went out, Friday night, to some bars in Burlington - first time I've been "downtown" since arriving up here. I was pleasently surprised - my first thought to describe it would be "quaint little New England city" - quite a few bars and quite a few people out - maybe kinda Buckhead-ish, without all the sketchy people. Reminded me a little also of New Oreleans' French Quarter, with building from another centry and streets blocked off as pedestrian avenues.
I brought a bunch of my textbooks up here with me, with the intention being that I would read and learn stuff in my spare time. HA. Of course I've opted instead to let by brain rot in leaps and bounds. That said, work at IBM is interesting and should prove fufilling and rewarding, and I'm learing lots of new things there, and meeting lots of people, and hopefully leaving a favorable impression, so that one day they'll like me give me a job.
Should be getting my first paycheck- tomorrow, hopefully. Yay!
Just finished my first week up here in VT, and on the job at IBM.. feel more or less settled, in both respects. Was going to post a pic of my new place to share, but I haven't taken one yet, so that can wait. I'm sub-letting for the summer - one bedroom of a two bedroom apt. My roomate's name is Michael, 23 years old, also an employee at IBM - (he graduated from college at 19, has his masters (electrical engineering), AND has been already working at IBM for FOUR YEARS. crazy) He seems like a really nice guy, but he keeps to himself most of the time, which is fine, because I'm the same way, but at the same time it would be nice to be living with someone who is a little more outgoing who could bring me out of my shell somewhat. Doesn't seem to have alot of close friends up here- at least none have come by the apartment since I've been here. Most of the time he's sitting at his computer playing "Worlds of Warcraft" or something. I was hoping he would show me to a bar or two around here, but that doesn't look like that's going to happen this weekend. Anyway, the good thing is he doesn't seem anal about anything, so that works.
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So, I've had a lot more idle time on my hands than I'm used to - going from a 70 hour work week as a graduate research assistant to a 40 hour work week as a quasi-professional has its consequences. One of them being playing Halo2 for like 2 hours every day (on xbox live). Unfortunatly, instead of getting better, I think I'm just getting worse. Haven't gotton out of the apartment much, except to go to the grocery store and to Walmart. Maybe I'll catch Star Wars today. I can't believe NK already saw it TWICE! she usually HATES that starwars shit (i suppose hate is a strong word, but she never seem to care for star wars before), but she LOVED Episode III.
what else? I'll tell you:
I've eaten almost a whole jar of peanut butter in less than 1 week. I should have a show on the Food Network on how to live on less than a dollar a day.
I wanted to start jogging when I got up here, but I've been too lazy, and I hate any form of discomfort. Its too cold too - I have to wear a jacket to go outside in the evening. Perhaps this week will be my week..
I have another paper accepted for an upcoming conference - IEEE's NSREC in July (can't remember at the moment what this stands for, but I believe the first word is "Nuclear" and the last word is "Conference". Overall the topic is radiation effects on circuits operating in outer space - a much bigger area of discussion than most people appreciate.) Its a poster instead of a presentation, which is fine with me. I'm not even going the meeting - I'll be up here, and can't spare the travel time. I still need to
My MS thesis has been officially approved and finalized by the graduate office and Georgia Tech! Thank GOD that's over with and done. Talk about 4 months of soul-drain. Unless some odd curveball comes up, I'll be officially graduated in August. But nothing surprises me these days, so it will be a great relief to get the official notice of course requirement completion and whatnot.
Ok, this has dragged on long enough. Time to play Halo.
Lots of stuff happened in the past month
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- April 17-21 I was in San Jose, CA to give a talk (my first-ever platform presentation) at IEEE's annual IRPS. That was scary, but I survived - attendance at for the session on compound semicondutors was actually quite low, but that was fine with me. The next time will hopefully be much easier. I got to have dinner with my dad and uncle while I was out there. It was kinda like a vacation, except one where you're stressed out the whole time, don't know anybody, and don't know what anybody is even talking about.
-The semester ended - my finals were last thursday. It would have been nice if it ended with that, but I had a lot of work and research-related loose ends to tie up, which I was furiously working on until this past tuesday. Some good news is I finished my ms thesis and it was approved by the committee (hopfully the graduate office won't find any show-stopping formatting errors) That should complete all my requirements for my MS degree, and assuming it does I'll officially graduate in August. yay. The bad news is when I looked at my final grades on Tuesday, I found, low and behold, I had been my first ever C since starting college. (It would have been my first C in my whole life had it not been for Mrs. Hazelwood's broadcasting class in 10th grade. what a bitch.) My analog integrated circuits class - I worked my ass off all semester, and managed to find myself below the class average on the first and third tests in the class. I did really well on the final (88%), but apparently it wasn't well enough. From what I can tell after speaking with other students, this particular professor gives out A LOT of C's, which in my own experience isn't all that common from a prof to do in a graduate level class. Ok, whatever, I was upset about it, but I'm over it now. Just don't tell my dad what happened.
-And probably the biggest news of all - at the moment I am in Vermont - Burlington to be exact. I just arrived today. I am so fucking tired of driving. I would have made a phone post to bitch about how much driving was starting to suck today, but I had no clue what number to call. Most of my unpacking is done now and my inflatable bed is inflated. In fact, right now I'm using it as a chair, because I forgot to bring one. If you hadn't heard, I have an internship up here with IBM this summer. The good news is that it is closely realted to my research interest, and pays well, so I'm very excited. The bad news is, NK had to stay in ATL for work, at least for a little while. We'll figure something out. So it's very sad being apart, and I'm feeling quite homesick right now. My roomate seems nice enough - will let you know if that changes.
Anyway, its just weird actually being here now, after anticipating it for so long, and having no idea what to actually anticipate. Well, I still am not sure what to anticipate insofar as the job and work itself goes. Hopfully I can convince all the IBM people that I am as great and smart of a guy as my research advisor seems to for some reason think I am..
as stated in a previous most, i underwent a major hair cut recently, and I thought I could share.
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el neo me:
el olden me:
also just for shits and giggles, i wanted a share of pic of my new favorite item - my new "Eileen Flying High" coffee mug, purchased in none other than panama city beach, FL, home of the tackesit shit for tackiest people in the world.
As you might be able to see, the price tag has still managed to stay attached. That would be 25 cents.
And I'm kicking myself now, cause I realized that I should have just dropped 2 bucks and bought one for everyone I know.
In other news, the writing of my thesis is coming along well. My goal is to be finished writing by Friday, and then finished revising by next friday.
Well, NK just got home from her spring-break weekend in New Orleans with her teacher friends and Manda. Gotta go!
this being my first venture out from lurking and into the posting realm of livejournal in quite a while. how is everybody doing? this semester has been quite busy and hellish from the get-go back in January, so that is probably the primary reason I've been away. not really for lack of interesting stuff going on- well interesting to me. eg.:
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1) I have an summer internship lined up at IBM in Burlington, VT. NK will be staying here in Atlanta, so I'll be more or less on my own from mid May to mid August- scary! At the moment I'm getting my housing situation all worked out up there, but I've never been anywhere in the northeast, so this will be a new experience for me on several different levels, and just that general sense of uncertainty makes me a little anxious. We should be able to afford some airline tickets back and fourth from some weekends together, so that will be good. Overall, though I'm excited because this will be a very good experience for me, and an excellent opporturnity to grow and learn and build relationships. It might be refreshing to get away from Atlanta and Georgia Tech for a while, too. The project I'll be working on involves transistor optimization for RF power amplifers in SiGe, which nicely builds on the research experience I've already had.
2) I'm presenting my first paper at a conference in San Jose in just a few weeks, and everything about this has me scared shitless. Speaking in front of people is not something I feel strong at, and the notion of having to present for an auditorium full of experts is very intimidating. The whole business travel aspect of it is more than I care to deal with also, but there's a first time for everything, so hopefully next time will be easier.
3) If all goes according to plan, I should be finishing all my requirements for my MS by the end of this semster, including a thesis and a minor in physics, both of which I'm scambling to complete right now.
4) For reasons including, but not limited to 1) and 2) above, last weekend I went under the knife for my first haircut in almost 2 years, so the shoulder-length hair is gone now, and everyone who knows me at work and otherwise has been doing double takes to identify me. If I could find my digital camera, I'd post a pic, but it looks like that will have to wait.
5) Last week was my spring break, but it was the shittiest spring break ever since I had to work every day anyway. so it goes. Oh yeah, and I really wanted to go see Interpol on monday, but the show was sold out. CURSES!
6) I spoke with my mother for the first time in 3 months, but I don't really feel like going into all that right now
BTW Happy easter
I finished my finals today, er make that final (singular), since I am a sick-ass and was only taking one class. It was more or less a toughie- i was pretty much as prepared as I could have been, and figure/hope I did pretty well. I've been quite conflicted this week, because my birthday present-copy of halo 2 (courtesy of my lovely wife nvkgrens) arrived in the mail this week, and studying just seems so boring and senseless in comparison. so, yeah, i played some halo when I should have been hitting the books, but alls well that ends well.
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soooooooooooooo the semester is over, but i'm still stressin like it ain't- can't go for 16 weeks and just flip that shit off lika switch. Tomorrow's a me-day-off, then the weekend, which should involve alcolhol, then next week I actually have a lot of GRA stuff to finished up before xmas break.
sadness! my bestest-friend Sarah-Tan (stan24 for you livejournal users out there, except that she doesn't actually ever update) just finished her last classes for her MS and is done with georgia tech forever. well, she seems pretty happy about it, going off to med-school and bigger and better things and all, but I'm sad. All my gt-college friends are gone now :( These kind of things happen when you've been going to the same school for almost 7 years. BTW she has an interview in NY for her first-choice school this weekend, so i'm really excited for her and wishing her all the best of luck on that. anyway, she'll still be around atl, probably doing lots of yoga, until next fall, so hopefully she won't ditch me just because she's not at tech anymore.
i think i'm gonna go play halo now.
shot dead on stage...
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How come Dimebag Darrell gets shot, but the members of Maroon 5 get a pass?
I thought i wanted this phone -
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but that was before i saw this one:
The Motorola RAZR V3 (if you click the link, be sure to check out the neat interactive 3-D 360 view)
ooo small and pretty. problem is price, about the same as a desktop computer (around $500). can't really afford that now, but maybe if i squeeze my pennies, and the price comes down some. hmm we'll see. ( maybe i still want the V80 cause it has crazy-ass flashing lights.Collapse )
the phone i have now was really cool when i got it, but that was probably over 3 years ago, and the buttons are about to fall off it these days.
if i were to break down and buy a nokia, it would probably have to be this one. but I haven't read the reviews on this particular phone yet.
OK nevermind, the review says the nokia sucks, so fuck that.