Wednesday, April 30, 2008

What's New?

Hello. Chemistry is still hard. I studied with Amelia today for something like 4 hours and we didn;t finish the practice test. That doesn't seem like its going to work on friday, when I have to take a similar test in an hour and a half. We'll see I guess, when I crash and burn. I also have to finish the loads of chemistry homework that I have to do (all online) which is not only pretty hard, it's also really, really, really boring.

Instead of doing my chemistry more after I came home, since i was pretty burned out on it, i tried to key out a couple of the insects that I found in Peninsula Park for my project. This is also hard, but its much more interesting. I have to look at details like the length of the lobes on the bottom edges of wings and compares them to the length of the Mu + 1 cell. Hard as well, but fun. Thank god I found that microscope. I have to makes flash cards for all of these terms that I am learning for insect biology. I'd list them but there's about a bajillion of them that have no real analogy to human anatomy. Pretty fun though. It's satisfying when you spend over an hour on one specimen, which you know what it is (such as the ground beetle family Caribidae and then actually arrive at the in the key. Beetles have a part on their leg called "the antennae cleaner". It's a spine on their front elbow, and the only part that's easy to remember.

I also found a bee from the family Colletidae, a yellow faced bee. Those live in the dirt in the ground. According to my textbook most bees are solitary, and live in holes in the ground. I also had Apidae, which specifically was Apis mellifera L, which is easy to spot because they are the only honey bees in N. America, and they are not from here, though we depend on them for everything.

Last night I heard a numbers station right before going to be. I posted about it from my phone cause i was in bed already. Totally creepy and fun. It was a woman's voice in spanish and said something like "Cuatro, Cuatro, Ocho, Dos. Cinco." Over and over again. There were 2 groups of numbers. It ended with "Hello? Hello? Hello? Hello?" which gave me the heebies jeebies. I just got this new radio from amazon which gets pretty good reception on the attached antenna, but really great reception on the included external antenna that is 12 feet long so you can put it outside while you sit comfortable inside. It also cost about the same as the shitty radio shack one, is smaller, backlit, and can store 1000 stations. A good deal. Its missing a lot of frequencies while you scan, except that since you just type in frequencies, you can get them back. it doesn't block them out when you do that. They might do it because there are rarely things broadcast on the ones it skips (I've read they are for shipping companies and for maritime emergency broadcasts) but also, often numbers stations are found on them. I found mine at 5.901 kHz, at 0843 UTC.

I read about a hack you can do to some autoscan FM radio where you can unmute the autoscan so that you hear all the garbled sound while it scans. While doing this, you can talk to ghosts in the same room as you. They will use the snippets of words on the radio to form their own words through the radio. Sounds like total bullshit. Why do ghosts all of the sudden get special powers to control the airwaves?

Tomorrow: More chemistry studying, as well as Physics lab. I have to do two write ups for my physics lab. I have been neglectful of that class this term. Its not been that hard so far. Its slso not been as interesting as I had hoped. I like learning about simple circuits but its been about what's actually going on inside of them, instead of building little robots. Soon, maybe.

Also, apparently I was mistaken about colony collapse disorder, and the israeli virus is not the cause like i had read. I had read that reasearchers had isolated what turned out to be a bee virus from israel, and that when they tested for that specifically, they had found it in many hives and were quarantining theme. However, articles I read tonight said that the israeli virus, although thought to be a possible cause, does bot account for all of the symptoms they are finding, or rather, not finding. The articles I read tonight, though published in the last few days, still don't seem to have any new information then from what they were saying a year ago.

The bees that I am enjoying in my backyard, the orchard mason bees (Osmia spp.) are native to oregon and reportedly may be a good substitute in the case that CCD continues to ravage Apis mellifera colonies. They are not social so the risk of disease spread is low, and genetic variety is higher, since they don't all come from the same queen. They don't make honey, but it is clincally proven that they are "sweet as sugar." This weekend the ones in my yard didn't get up until around 10:30 or so. Lazy!

Also, the US Dept of Forestry is hiring students for entry level summer jobs. I am applying for those involving biological technicians as well as those in the park service. I might work at a fish hatchery, or perhaps stand in a booth all day handing out park maps and taking money for parking. I really have no idea but figure its an oppurtunity I should take, so I am applying. If i get sent far away (farther away they the columbia river gorge) they give me a place to live. Probably not a very nice place, but some quarters just the same. We'll see how it goes.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

i actually heard a numbers

i actually heard a numbers station tonight on my tiny kaito ka11 on the whip antenna! in spanish. very exciting! ocho! dos!

Monday, April 28, 2008

ants are so stupid

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Up my nose

here'a movie of the inside of my nostril. The video is gross so beware. The dialogue is sort of funny.

Banana Overnight

Here's a time lapse of a chunk of banana drying out overnight that I did to try out my new microscope.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Find of the Century!!

Today while i was supposed to be studying for my physics test tonight, I was looking at craigslist and found a posting for a dissecting microscope, as well as a digital USB microscope for...$125! Individually these retail for $270 together. Total steal They were both "unopened" but i think the digital one had been opened at one point. No bother! The digital one even had drivers for OS X on their website. Check out this video of my CHIN!! towards the end it gets blurry and boring, so feel free to stop it after i try to go to 400x on my eye.

(there's supposed to be a video here but its not!)

I was about to spend about $250 on just a microscope, or just use the schools. This is much cooler. All i had to do was drive to vancouver. Lucky!!

Now i have to go to school to study for my test tonight. I have a lot of studying to do for it and these microscopes are too distracting. I want to try out a time-lapse with iStopmotion on the chrysali that I found in peninsula park (pictured above), but i really have to study.

Who cares though, as long as I pass right? I already got into my college of choice, that keeps sending me literature about how great they are. I guess that I could still tell them I don't want to go there. I still have to actually go look at the school.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

this is another picture of the same sky. Breakfast with russell backman was a lot of fun. I am meeting noel and (i think) colby for a drink now after work.

ceiling of the old skylark.

it went from very hot weather to very cold weather today and we had some strange cloud patterns. those waves are pretty deep.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

mosquito ring tones

this stuff is old old news but its fun and depressing to try to see how high you can go. I can just barely hear 16 and clearly hear 15. The others feel like a tv might be on across the street, or I might be imagining it.

mosquito ring tones

I finished getting my album artwork all done. It took many days but it's as done as I am going to get it.

Friday, April 4, 2008

yuck yuck

the food stand is called pee hole.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008


According to the OSU admission application status page, my residency affidavit is "approved" which hopefully means I am considered a resident! If i had looked a little closer when checking it this morning, I may have seen that it also said decision was "admit" for fall 2008, before I got my letter this afternoon. I'm very happy.

update: letter arrived! says "yes"!


I got my letter of acceptance from OSU this morning, which is a relief. However, it had me listed as a non-resident of Oregon, which worried me, since I sent a huge packet of proof (over 80 pages) that I am in fact a resident of Oregon, on Friday. I called the woman who determines residency and she said that she received the packet yesterday, and that its separate, so that classification on my acceptance letter is not final. That's another relief, because its a $12,000/year difference.

I started the spring term on monday. Chemistry 223, Physics 203 (which is mostly electronics and should be fun), a biology project, and an online class learning Adobe Dreamweaver. The last one is because i needed two more credits to be a full time student, and i think it will be fun. It was that, or a purely html/xhtml class, which if i really want to, I can take over the summer. But i doubt that i will really want to.

Yolanda got me a shortwave radio for my birthday, so that I could look for numbers station broadcasts. The first one was a grunding mini300 which got pretty decent SW reception (and incredible FM reception, though I only listen to 2 FM stations that come in pretty clearly anyway) but was missing the frequencies that most numbers stations are broadcast on. I exchanged it for a Radio Shack brand one, that also gets great FM reception, but almost no SW reception, even the 10.00 universal time code broadcast, BBC, CBC, or anything else that is high-powered. I read that shortwave is very touchy and can vary from day to day in terms of reception, but i've tried it at different times of the day for 3 days now and have heard nothing except hip hop very faintly. The next step up in shortwave radios is a jump of like $60 bucks. i don't think its worth it, so I am going to try and return it this afternoon, and just be satisfied with these recordings.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Sexy Babies

Yolanda spotted this Bratz doll showing off her vagina from within the package. All of the Yazmin dolls were doing it. Those Bratz, I tell ya.

video test

they said they support videos. do they?