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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Palmer's LiveJournal:

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    Friday, December 25th, 2009
    12:06 am
    Luke 2 (1-11)
    (1) And it came to pass that in those days there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that the whole world should be enrolled. (2) This enrolling was first made by Cyrinus, the governor of Syria. (3) And all went to be enrolled, every one into his own city. (4) And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem: because he was of the house and family of David. (5) To be enrolled with Mary his espoused wife, who was with child. (6) And it came to pass that when they were there, her days were accomplished that she should be delivered. (7) And she brought forth her first born son and wrapped him up in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger: because there was no room for them in the inn. (8) And there were in the same country shepherds watching and keeping the night watches over their flock. (9) And behold an angel of the Lord stood by them and the brightness of God shone round about them: and they feared with a great fear. (10) And the angel said to them: Fear not; for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy that shall be to all the people: (11) For, this day is born to you a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord, in the city of David.

    Merry Christmas, everyone.

    Current Mood: Enjoying Family
    Monday, April 20th, 2009
    7:56 pm
    Thursday, April 9th, 2009
    1:04 am
    Tuesday, April 7th, 2009
    12:34 am
    Okay, so other random shit that's going on.

    I was just in Canadia for a Kotei. I had a ton of fun. I wish some other Canadians were still playing L5R (Charlie, Alec, Jay, Dave, James etc) but the people there were good peeps.

    Past that, I dunno. I'm working, my job is what it is.
    Monday, April 6th, 2009
    6:25 pm
    I haven't posted in forever, so I give you a video
    Maybe I'll write about my time in Canadia in a bit.

    Monday, March 23rd, 2009
    10:30 pm
    RIP Daphne. The only non-Season 1 character I liked.

    I still think Rebel should've been Hannah Geitelman tho.
    Sunday, February 8th, 2009
    2:11 pm
    Rant On
    Okay, this whole steroid thing has just gotten utterly ridiculous, now with the new A-Roid news. I'm only hoping that one important change will come of it - that the BBWAA will lose the right to vote on the Hall of Fame, because of what they've done to Mark McGwire these past few years.

    The story is simple. Yes, in the mid-90s and early 2000s, TONS of players were using steroids. Yet these hypocritical fatasses feel that they somehow can divine which players "we know are guilty" and which ones are completely clean. Of course, A-Rod was one of the completely clean crew at the time.

    Which of these players is on steroids - the one who at age 37 is 50 pounds over his 25 year old playing weight and hits .370 with 117 runs scored and 110 RBIs, or the one who is 50 pounds over his 25 year old playing weight and hits .372 with 97 runs scored and 119 RBIs? Is it the pitcher who at age 39 pitching for the Yankees goes 20-9 with a 3.37 ERA, or the one who at age 38 pitching for the Yankees goes 20-3, 3.51?* The guy who never, ever missed a game for like 15 years (Cal Ripken Jr) was "obviously" clean? Ricky Henderson didn't take any drugs to hit .315 with 37 SBs and 89 runs scored at age 40?

    *The players, as anyone could look up, are in order Barry Bonds, Tony Gwynn, Mike Mussina and Roger Clemens.

    The point is that a bunch of out-of-touch middle-aged and older journalists, who practice hero worship for the clean* players of their era, are not the ones who should be able to pass judgment on the players of the steroid era. When it comes down to it, it's unfair to compare players to anyone of an era other than their own. It's not like there weren't both pitchers and hitters taking steroids.

    *Clean obviously not including the greenies present in every clubhouse, or any steroids players may have taken then since we now know the San Diego Chargers were taking them as early as 1963.

    Baseball players have been cheating since time immemorial. Bill James has an article about Babe Ruth's corked bat in his Baseball Abstract. Gaylord Perry lived on the "hard slider", aka the spitball. Most of Ed Delahanty and Sliding Billy Hamilton's outrageous seasons from the 1890s came because the Phillies were stealing signs from center field.

    But wait, what about statistics? Baseball is a game that loves its statistics. Barry Bonds made a mockery of the home run numbers!

    Somehow this is more of a mockery than what the mound and strike zone rules did for hitting stats from 1963-1968? Worse than some of Cy Young's 511 wins coming from when he pitched at 50 feet and started every other game? Worse than Ty Cobb's .368 career average and Ruth's 714 home runs never once being accumulated against a black pitcher? Worse than Chuck Klein and Lefty O'Doul's insane 1930 numbers coming because they played in a joke of a ballpark (ditto for Larry Walker, Vinny Castilla, Andres Galaragga and Dante Bichette's numbers in the 90s)?

    There is no doubt in my mind that Mark McGwire cheated. What he did was EXACTLY what the players in Jim Bouton's Ball Four did, take something that was illegal (steroids vs amphetemines) but not banned by baseball to enhance their performance on the diamond. To for some reason hero worship one group and claim to be a paragon of virtue keeping the other group out is simply hypocrisy that cannot be spoken against strongly enough.
    Tuesday, January 20th, 2009
    12:14 am
    It's 12:10 but I'm not ready for bed. Not sure why. Today was kinda slow. Hope tomorrow will be, too.

    Let's see. This weekend I went to my friend Krissy's happy hour at McFadden's in Northern Liberties. I had a lot of fun, mostly hung out with her brother, cousin and friend Ricki. There was drama between her and another cousin but I was out of that. Then I was starving so I wanted to hit the diner but nobody wanted to go and JW was at the Hulmeville. I went there and a bunch of HS people were there so I talked to them which was fun too.

    Yesterday sucked. The Eagles are heartbreakers.

    Nothing else particularly noteworthy has been going on in my life. I just want January to be over. I think I need to burn a couple of vacation days once it is.

    I've been playing L5R. I found out there are a couple local grassroots groups. Thursdays in Holmes and me and (hopefully) Joe will be hitting up the new AG&H on Saturday. My Gift should be here by then, I want it to build, like, four new decks.

    That's about it from here. Hopefully something cool will happen in the near future.
    Sunday, January 18th, 2009
    6:22 pm
    Sigh
    The most frustrating part of that loss is that they didn't get a real chance to tie it because some official didn't have the balls to do his job and throw a flag on an obvious pass interference.
    Friday, January 9th, 2009
    7:49 pm
    Dumb lyrics
    Rage Against the Machine gets a lot of props for their righteous anger and true belief in their causes, as well as Tom Morello's most excellent guitar playing. However, I now believe they may have come up with the stupidest lyric in the history of music (non-Brandon Flowers division).

    They've been playing "Down Rodeo" on the local alt-rock station, which apparently is a track from Evil Empire that was supposed to be released, but wasn't. The refrain:

    So now I'm rollin' down Rodeo with a shotgun
    These people ain't seen a brown skinned man since their grandparents bought one


    Wha?

    Grandparents? When the hell was this written, 1922? That's about the last time I can think of anybody being alive who might have actually seen a slave auction.

    Additionally, has Zach de la Rocha ever BEEN to Rodeo Drive? Does he actually know any rich people? Who the hell does he think clean their houses, trim their hedges, wash their cars, etc? It sure as hell isn't other white people. If anything, the middle class probably see the LEAST of minorities - the rich use them and the poor work beside them.

    At some point Morello, Commerfield and whatever the hell their drummer's name is should've stepped in and just said "Dude, this is fucking stupid. Channel your hate somewhere productive."

    But they didn't, and so the "Are We Human Or Are We Dancer?" Worst Lyrics Award of the Day goes to Rage Against the Machine.
    Thursday, December 25th, 2008
    12:00 am
    Luke 2 (1-11)
    (1) And it came to pass that in those days there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that the whole world should be enrolled. (2) This enrolling was first made by Cyrinus, the governor of Syria. (3) And all went to be enrolled, every one into his own city. (4) And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem: because he was of the house and family of David. (5) To be enrolled with Mary his espoused wife, who was with child. (6) And it came to pass that when they were there, her days were accomplished that she should be delivered. (7) And she brought forth her first born son and wrapped him up in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger: because there was no room for them in the inn. (8) And there were in the same country shepherds watching and keeping the night watches over their flock. (9) And behold an angel of the Lord stood by them and the brightness of God shone round about them: and they feared with a great fear. (10) And the angel said to them: Fear not; for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy that shall be to all the people: (11) For, this day is born to you a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord, in the city of David.

    Merry Christmas, everyone.

    Current Mood: peaceful
    Friday, December 12th, 2008
    1:13 am
    I'm up late tonight. It appears there is a "local" L5R group. It took me an hour 45 to drive the 35 minutes MapQuest claimed to get there tonight, but it's only about 35 mins from my house (slightly closer than the Realm, tho the company doesn't quite rate if you could our soon-to-be-gone chemist). Apparently they get 10ish for regular Thursday tourneys, tho there were only 6 there tonight. So that's a plus.
    Monday, December 8th, 2008
    12:41 am
    Well, the concert was awesome. Airborne Toxic Event was as good live as on CD, if not better, and I got in a short chat with the lead singer at the bar afterwards. The Ting-Tings were also very good live, their singer has a ton of energy on-stage. And I've never seen a drummer play a guitar and bass drum at the same time.

    Afterwards I randomly hit up Finnegan's Wake with my friend Krissy and some drunk Navy guys she'd met, so that was a good time too. All in all, coupled with the Eagles win, a great Sunday.
    Saturday, December 6th, 2008
    12:35 am
    21 new abilities at level 80. Yeesh, broke my bank.
    Thursday, November 27th, 2008
    3:15 pm
    Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
    Monday, November 24th, 2008
    6:25 pm
    I listened to that single from Death Magnetic again. The solo at the end isn't half bad. I won't go so far as to say Kirk Hammett got his balls back, but I think Lita Ford showed him what he can do with a vagina.
    Saturday, November 22nd, 2008
    4:19 pm
    Watching the Land Grant Bowl today (Penn State/Michigan State) reminds me yet again what a joke SEC and Pac-10 football are. Yeah, it's great that you have the fun & gun, or all sorts of speedy athletes from Florida and what not. Let's see you bring that onto an icy, snowy field in State College or Ann Arbor or East Lansing or Columbus at the end of November and try and win a game. Whereas we go into your homes on January 1st and win all the time (Ohio State not included).

    It's why the bowls are a joke, too. If they ever do put together a playoff the sites should be determined by seating capacity, not by weather. Have the national championship in the Big House and the semifinals in Happy Valley and at Neyland Stadium.

    At least people who live in the places they play real football in real weather (and yes, this means I'm dissing you wuss teams that play in a Dome, Syracuse, Minnesota, Georgia etc) can appreciate the sport. Hell, I have more respect for Boise State than I do for Florida even with their blue field.
    11:48 am
    Dissin' Music
    When I was out in California I picked up five CDs at Rasputin Music to listen to since the car didn't have the xM I expected:

    The Who - "The Ultimate Collection"
    The Airborne Toxic Event - self-titled
    Against Me! - "New Wave"
    New Order - "(the best of) New Order"
    Pixies - "Wave of Mutilation: Best of the Pixies"

    The Who I know I like, I just didn't have any of their CDs. The Airborne Toxic Event I've talked about, it was kind of a random, discounted buy and damn I'm glad I did. I had Against Me!'s previous CD, and liked it a lot, and this one wasn't quite as good, but was still worth the buy. Even if probably the best song, Thrash Unreal, has the refrain "No mother ever dreams her daughter will grow up to be a junkie." Real uplifting there.

    So that leaves the two other "best of" CDs, from bands I wanted to know more about. The Pixies one was solid. The only song of theirs I really knew was "Here Comes Your Man", but I know how influential they were, and I remember one of my college roommates, Karl, was a big fan. It's an odd CD, because there's no other songs on it that really scream "this is a great song", but almost all of them are listenable, which you rarely get from any CD, even a greatest hits CD.

    The New Order CD, however, was a huge disappointment. I love their type of sound, even as it has translated to the Killer, or what I like to call "the best New Order song that New Order didn't write", the Bloodhound Gang's "The Bad Touch". But outside their four radio hits (True Faith, Bizarre Love Triangle, Regret, and Blue Monday) the CD is pretty weak. They don't do much that's imaginative from a lyrical perspective, the vocal tracks kind of run together, and there's little interesting instrumentally. It's like they had to distill all their talent into those four huge hits, all of which still get significant airplay on alt-rock radio today (probably the only older bands that still see play on alt-rock radio are punk forefathers like The Clash and the Ramones). I guess this was double disappointing because it was the second most expensive CD of the ones I bought, after only the Who (and only a dollar less than that double CD).

    So that's my review. Listen at your own risk. And just bum Pixies stuff off Doruk; apparently he loves them enough that he downloaded about their whole library for Rock Band, and Reese bitches every time he has to cycle through it to find the songs he wants.

    Current Mood: awake
    Tuesday, November 11th, 2008
    9:54 pm
    Q: Where the fuck have you been?

    A: Good question. I feel like I've been all over the damn place. 6000 miles of flying and another 1100 of driving will do that to you.

    So a few months back I qualified for this cool one-time card tournament called the "Samurai Championships", to be held in LA this past weekend. Those of you who've ever seen me play L5R may be wondering how the hell this happened. I'm not sure myself, but it had a lot to do with "playing against Chris Dreyer in an even-numbered year", I think.

    Anyway, only 32 players worldwide got invites to this event, and I was one. I have a long-standing policy of not flying cross-country or transoceanic just to play cards, so I figured I'd turn it into a vacation. Couple this with Bryan Reese offering to put me up for a week for some testing and hanging out and as a staging point, and I was good to go.

    My flight was Monday the 3rd, but fate intervened to stretch the vacation by a day - WORLD FUCKING CHAMPIONS. Went to a Halloween party on Saturday dressed as 25 years of Philadelphia sports failures, then with a handy taxi ride from my dad early Monday morning, I flew cross-country.

    The flight sucked, because I'm still sick and my ears refused to pop, leading to severe pain. I was worried that they were going to blow out my eardrums, to be honest. Anyway, apparently that pain is why babies cry on flights, so I'll have some more sympathy toward that in the future. Touched down, got my Chevy Cobalt rental, found out it didn't have xM, those bitches. The radio stations in Sacramento suck.

    Monday was getting in, getting organized, getting dinner, and getting CIAken at the airport. Tuesday we woke up, tested and played some Rock Band, then drove down to San Jose to meet up with lazman. Laz goes to San Jose State, so we met him on the campus. It was like 65 and all the girls there were bundled up, and even then, failed the attractiveness scale. Aken and I were not amused. With Laz we got some awesome burritos and then went to Rasputin Music where I picked up a few CDs to pass the time on the drives of the next few days.

    Interlude: Check out The Airborne Toxic Event. Buy their CD. It's incredible.

    More Rock Band, and as a spoiler on the week, no, Aken never beat Run to the Hills on Expert on the drums. Wednesday I was up reasonably early and out to Mt Shasta. There were two waterfalls I wanted to get photos of, and the first was okay after a quarter mile hike down a trail and some wintry mix-affected pix. But the second, unfortunately, involved a trail next to some active railroad tracks and apparently the bitches of the world succeeded in getting all parking in the area banned. Normally I'd have parked a bit away and walked it anyway, but with the snow and the cold I STILL FUCKING HAVE it just wasn't going to happen. I got back to the Reeses', some Aussies were there, so we hung out, played cards and had a generally good time before I crashed at midnight-ish.

    Thursday I'd planned on going up thru Marin county but I couldn't get up in time, and figured I'd stay in and hardcore test. I never found a deck I really liked so I stuck with the Unicorn from GenCon, updated. We went out to some grill called BJ's for dinner, which was quality, and Reese's daughter is about the most well-behaved 1 year old I've ever seen. Then Doruk showed up and it was more Rock Band til 1 or so.

    Friday I was up at the ass-crack of dawn and out the door at 6AM for a drive down the PCH to LA. Everybody else decided the 10+ hour drive wasn't worth it. The Bay Bridge has a terrible approach and tourists drive too damn slow and it sucks when construction shuts the whole road down for a half hour, but overall the views were just incredible, the drive was worth it. Also at some point I came to some realizations that some of the stress in my life was unnecessarily self-inflicted, and got a good action plan for getting rid of it. So all was well except the part where LA is ass-backwards and at 5PM on a weekday the Ventura Freeway was packed going into the city but not coming out. So I was late getting to the AEG reception, but got there in time for some of the open bar, all was well. Up til 1 testing, crashed.

    Saturday was the tourney, and I did not do well. Also Penn State lost on what JW said was a BS penalty but I dunno, I didn't see it. My dad said we were also fucked by several spots. We had dinner at the nice restaurant at the subtly ghetto Radisson LAX. Brandon Bryant swung by and that was cool; Lil Jappa Boy is a fun time who we don't see often enough. I crashed early.

    Sunday, also good times, tho I didn't do well enough in the side tourney either. I learned to play Dominion and spent some time playing 1000 Blank Cards, watched the Eagles choke, and then maris61 who I hadn't seen in years came by and hung out and good times were had by all.

    Yesterday I flew all day. The ears were better but not much. I read "Blender" which was better than Rolling Stone, and finished Malachy McCourt's History of Ireland and started reading a book called Traffic: Why we drive the way we do and what it says about us.

    Today was my cooldown day, just doing some catching up and chilling. Tomorrow it's back to work. Ugh!

    Current Mood: awesome
    Monday, November 3rd, 2008
    4:15 am
    Dream of Californication...

    See you west coasters (and flyer-inners) later.

    I'll be in Sacramento til Thursday and at LAX (a hotel) Friday-Sunday. Might be going out in LA Friday night; if you'd like me to let you know the plans, hit up my cell. Cheers!
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