Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Friday, December 17, 2010
Saturday, December 11, 2010
For the past three to four months, I've been looking for a car for myself. After discovering that my father would not allow me to take the car that my sister and I currently share to the track, nor modify in any way, I concluded that I needed a set of my own wheels. And also, one that had a manual transmition.
I scouered the internet--Copart, Vehbidz, Craigslist, eBay, Yahoo! Autos, and AOL Autos were the sites I ripped through, and eventually deduced what car I could afford with the money I had. From the onset, I knew I wanted something German. Whether that meant the essentially-out-of-reach realm of Porsches, the exclusive world of Mercedes-Benz, the slightly more reasonable planet of Audis, or the downright, down-to-earth land of BMWs.
Given not only that BMWs are purported to be some of the sportiest cars, in my estimation, they happen to be also some of the best-looking cars. Plus, the aforementioned car my sister and I share is a BMW, and being a part of the BMWCCA (BMW Car Club of America), my decision was foregone.
Early in my search, I realized that Copart and Vehbidz were less than ideal, let alone, credible sources for a car, let alone [I know, redundant] for one I intended to take on a track. In case you've never heard of the two car outlets, they are salvage dealers. (Think slightly higher-quality junkyards, and by slightly, I mean imperceivably). Many a listing on their respective sites have seen the severest of punishments from concrete walls, oncoming traffic, water, and its corrosive effects, and the laws of gravity, and its tendency to turn a car upside down. So, I concluded that a junkyard wasn't the right place for me.
Months passed before I made any effort of contacting sellers, which was likely because it was brought to my attention through the auto-searching process that $1000 isn't all that much. Before I made any knee-jerk reaction purchase, I would painstakingly inspect every pixel of a Craigslist post, and compare side-by-side prices, models, and most unfortunately of all, seller locations (which invariably would be placed as far away from my hometown of Chicago as possible) on eBay.
So with my $800 saved up from babysitting, chores, birthdays, and other miscellaneous methods, I had to have more if I had any hope of getting a ride. While on eBay searching for cars, my eyes slid upward to the "Sell" icon, and my mind played with the idea. I thought of the obsolete toys I had stockpiled in the basement, and contemplated selling them. The toys ranged from remote control cars, such as Zip-Zaps, XMODs, and even a gas-powered one, to K'nex toys, magazines, and Hot Wheels track sets. I made $300 in my first week, and have continued to make a profit ever since.
So that put me at around $1200 after taking into account the loads of birthday money I had accumulated this year. I actually had a chance this time to get a car! I continued my daily visit of Craigslist's Chicago "Autos + Trucks" listing, with a search query of "BMW" and a price range of "1 to 3000".
I will never forget the third of December, when I first laid eyes on possibly the most desirable and reasonable car listing I'd seen in months! For so long I had seen BMW E30 sellers that were simply out of their minds, with prices well into the 3000s of dollars. Twenty-plus-year-old cars don't belong to be priced nearly that high.
Over such a long period of time, I was relieved at the prospect of not looking over scores of listings, immediately looking if it was a manual, a two-door, and if it was a 325i, or a 325is, at least. Nothing else would suffice. And luckily for me, I came across the right car. It was a 1989 325is. The exact model, year, transmission, two-door car I silently wished for as my friends and family sang "Happy Birthday" before me and my birthday cake.
I was determined this was my car. I persistently sent e-mails to the seller daily. But because he was so congested with work that week, it wouldn't be until the weekend that he would respond. I asked for photos, and in the description, he said "runs good, good transmission, good clutch". Now this is rather typical rhetoric of what you'll find on Craigslist.
After a few back-and-forth e-mails, I eventually sent him my phone number, and on the Sunday night following, we talked, and talked and talked. I found out that he has two children, is a fellow member of the BMWCCA, and much like myself, is a fan of the classic E30 BMW look. He talked in-depth about the car, as I responded with casual "uh huhs", and "yeps", sometimes cutting him off unintentionally mid-sentence. At the end of the 40-minute conversation that boggled my mind how much he truly knows about cars, we decided that we would "keep in touch" and that it would be the next week that we would meet so that I could see the car.
Days passed, and I knew that my father would want to be there when I would make such a monumental purchase for my age. Keen to not purchase a "lemon", some days later, I waited for my father to return from his business trip in, you guessed it, Las Vegas. (Unlikely, I know. The place doesn't even sound business-y, does it?) We then got up on Saturday morning, and headed out in the constant rain pour. Using the MotionX GPS App on my iPhone, we eventually made it to the modest home in which my dream car was stored. We rang on the doorbell, and were greeted by a clearly "ethnic" lady as my father would later point out, with a maybe Polish accent. We walked past the medium-sized gray house to the garage that sat behind. We encountered a man with a prickly, black beard, glasses, and gray jeans and brown working boots with obvious paint smears on them.
I shook his hand assuringingly as I had spoken to him a few days prior and by text on the way there. We walked through the doorway of the three-car garage, and found a matte-red 1989 BMW 325is, a.k.a. the car of my dreams. It gazed at me just as intently as I did, only it looked better than it did in the photos he sent by e-mail. The interior was tan, and in all honesty, could be in better shape. Although the exterior was remarkably good, especially considering the price I payed for it.
Most notably, the rear bumper cover was cracked, and the basket-weave BBS wheels lacked their BMW badge caps. We talked for a good half hour, and my father sat in the driver's seat to operate the shifter knob and clutch. As I saw him approve of its robustness, I immediately anticipated the strategy I had planned ahead of time, which was to say "Will you take eleven-hundred?" and if that fails, say "Twelve-hundred?" and then if that fails, say "Twelve thirty? That's all I have". He then responded with "Twelve fifty and we have a deal". I looked to my right and said to my father, "Could you throw in an extra twenty dollars?" He took a bill out of his wallet, and we had a long-anticipated, and solid deal. Right after this tension, I recall him saying "Deal-maker of the century right here" as he went over to retrieve the title and papers.
We sorted the paperwork, and after that I shook his hand with vigor, sure to demonstrate my gratitude for accepting my admitted "low-ball". But I had no choice. I unfortunately didn't manage to make the full amount in time for our Saturday meet. As shameful as I felt moments after for doing this, because I can remember saying over the phone in our 40-minute conversation that "$1500 sounds right". I later found out he himself payed less for it when he bought it from the original Michigan owner, so that took away a good deal of the anxiety, as did the smile he finally let out as we took off in the car.
Currently, the car lacks a license plate, and is sitting in my father's spare hangar, being worked on by yours truly. So, as you can see, I am living a fantasy-a teenage boy finds a car he is in love with, has done much research for, gains friends, forms new, lasting relationships over, and modifies it and tunes it to his specific liking-and what a fantasy it is. Talk about your typical anime plot.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
(Link here:) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pSqyEXLkrZ0
Yes, we should be open--but not excessively so. I can post images of myself, videos of myself, music by myself, blogs by myself, Tweets or Facebook statuses by myself that encompass myself and everything about myself.... Myself, myself, myself, etc. The internet certainly nurtures a culture of egotism. People will post something about themselves, they will get supportive comments, in the form of "Likes", "Diggs", "Thumbs Up", "Five Stars", whatever it be, and feel that much more confident about themselves. They will then take that positive energy into the outside world and may more fiercely, than they otherwise would, assert themselves in the public sphere, leading to social friction, tension, and a clashing of egos among similarly-minded egomaniacs.
And so, there are indeed two extremes of one's internet publicness. One being in the vein of a high school girl taking sexually suggestive photos of herself in her bathroom, with a whole array of Facebook albums to back that up, and the other being an oftentimes meek , anonymous internet "personality", if not, lack thereof that will from time to time post comment on CNN.com, ESPN.com, etc. And in addition to this "personality", is as Jarvis details, an enraged commentor, one who feels totally excluded, and thus senses he or she is behind the illustrious "wall". This "wall" implies the media's exclusivity to the creation of their content, in that it excludes the public from fully participating in a "Crowdsourcing" kind of way.
"Crowdsourcing" is a phrase coined by Jarvis himself, examples of which include websites such as BitMob.com, YouTube.com, Blogspot.com, and virtually any other blogging tool. These are inherently community-driven services that encourage contributors to contribute as much as possible, as a high a rate as possible, and in as high a quality as possible, all of which are incented by public recognition (as mentioned earlier, through comments, positive ratings).
Now back to the infamous "wall". It is what separates the communities of any enthusiast, political, or entertainment internet publication. It is what has its users post nasty, harsh, and brutal comments-it doesn't adequately allow for a two-way street as a proper conversation. In that, it doesn't equally value the comments as it does the original post. Commentors are seen as indiscriminant underlings in comparison to the initial creator, which couldn't be more backwards. Because you see, commentors, whose role it is to motivate the initial creators must create too! Only, they must create criticisms and render appropriate ratings. And in turn, it is up to the intial creators to absorb the [hopefully] constructive criticsms in hopes of further improving their content, whatever it be.
So as you can see, the internet is a tremendously cyclical form of media, and if its users fall back on their pseudonyms followed by a couple of supposedly "lucky" numbers, or hide behind their business desks and cubicles, their business positions, or salaries, the true voice, the true freedom of the internet as a place, as a destination will no longer exist as a result of government regulation. So it is our duty as internet users to proudly be who we are not solely in the physical space, but equally in cyberspace. This means we must use our full names whenever relevant, communicate to community contributors constructively what we like and dislike, and ultimately be respectful of our fellow users, because if we are true to ourselves-to our names-every user we come into contact with on the internet has an equally likely possibility to meet us in person some day and call us out on what we said. And who wants to get in a shouting match in public?
Sunday, November 7, 2010
Sunday, October 24, 2010
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Sunday, October 3, 2010
Homecoming this year was a refreshing one. I came with a date that I am actually rather fond of, and as for all of the otherwise awkward customs – corsage, pictures, dinner, the dance itself, and the after party – they went exceedingly well. Yet for all intents and purposes, I could very vaguely label the dance as “fun”, it certainly wasn't anywhere near ideal. The music was by-the-numbers, mainstream, top-10 garbage that had largely been recycled from last year’s dance. The Black Eyed Peas’ “I Gotta Feeling” had all the attendants jumping for joy, and singing along to the anthem’s ubiquitous lyrics. Only for me, as a senior, it could have very well been the third dance at Saint Ignatius that featured such a track, so inevitably, the song’s explosiveness was mitigated by a power of ten for me. I emptily gestured as if I was filled with the energy that the music typically will infuse in its listeners, exhaustedly sang along, and motioned to be conscious during the annoying words that continue to echo through the drums of my ears as of this writing. I understand many a freshman had their first dance that night, but I think sometimes school dances are better served searching for more indie, less widely-known music, chosen for its quality, rather than its recognition or notoriety.
Thursday, September 30, 2010
By: Michael Lenoch
I want my college decision to be a good one,
For this life-changing choice to be made with a degree of seriousness,
I will therefore decide on a number of principles and ideals;
I want a challenge,
I want the average student to be more intelligent than me,
I want to grow, and learn from my peers,
I want to be social, and on the same level as my peers,
I want to progress myself,
I want to use my peers to build my horizons, and wish they do the same to me,
I want to strive to be better, continually,
I want to propel myself, ever thirsty for more knowledge; hungry for more answers,
I want to establish a degree of camaraderie,
I want an environment that supports both play and study,
I want to get along, be a part, be someone’s friend,
I want to challenge my mind and body; mentally and physically,
I want to join clubs, intramurals, and possibly sports,
I want to be involved in the community,
I want to attend mass as a group regularly,
I want friends who support me for doing so, and accept me for who I am,
I want to be greeted by smiles, and to smile back,
I want lazy days with hot chocolate in the winter, and I want vibrant summer days in which we all go outside and play,
I want to be comfortable, but more often than not, uncomfortable, forced to grow,
I want programs that interest me, and ones that can further shape me as a person,
I want classes that deepen my ability to analyze,
To write, and think,
I want to go to college.
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Sunday, September 19, 2010
While Jessica types until her bone wears away, I feel a sense of jealously coming on, and decide to write something for my blog. Jessica chats over the phone with my father, stressing about her homework to no end as I indulge in a therapeutic web surf, consuming all the media I missed out on during the arduous schoolweek. I act this way almost as if to completely contradict Jessica’s hive-minded, horse-blinders, lab-mouse mentality, so I can step back and laugh at her ridiculously intense level scrupulousness. I do this though, at the risk of my reputation to her and my potential bed time. See by not investing myself at every minute of every possible morsel of free time, I can appear, although maybe only marginally, lazy. But I don’t care. Also, by expending as little energy as possible by procrastinating and not doing my homework until the last minutes of Sunday’s schoolnight, I risk going to bed at a significantly later time, if not date, however less significantly for the latter. While writing this, I contemplate the fact that I had slept for a good two hours or so prior to this writing. I say “Hmm” to my self, not fazed one bit. I look over as Jessica checks Facebook. Not as scrupulous as I once suspected, sister. The truth comes out! I uncharacteristically turn up my iTunes volume level to compensate for her IQ-depleting talk with friend, Grace. I move on, and groove out.
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Sunday, September 5, 2010
Saturday, July 24, 2010
You have been good to me, providing a valuable platform to showcase my opinions and ideas for the past two years or so now. Yet it is worth saying that you boast some ungainly un-capabilities, such as, the inability the copy and paste text to post on the blog. You also do not offer the ability for users to post music from say, their soundcloud accounts, or to sync their Facebook accounts with their blogspot ones so that Facebook friends are alerted whenever a new Blogspot entry is added.
So with all the Twitters, those YouTubes, and them Facebooks, Blogspot.com has miserably fell behind the pack of modern blogging tools, and now is a horrible shadow of its once-glorious self that has primative monetizing, writing, and media tools that in my mind, no longer serve to adequately present information and media in a suitably contemporary fashion. I'm sorry Blogspot.com, but we can still be friends, right?
Well now that that's over, I guess I'll start a website of my own! Yep, I've been bored lately, and could desperately go for a challenge (that's not school-related), so what could be more challenging than web design? Now here's what seems to be an even greater challenge at the moment; coming up with a URL domain name!
Now what on earth do I christen my excursion into website mayhem? I'm thinking something lasting, easy-to-spell (to avoid confusion), non-embarrassing, non-German, [my] name, nor video game related. Well if you have any suggesstions, post them in the comments box, and I'm also hoping for a URL name that has .COM available to maximize visitors.
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Monday, June 28, 2010
From the margins of my Intro to Economics spiral notebook are tens of sayings James J. Hasten has gone on the record for. Note that some may be entirely out of context, and therefore may be irrelevant. Get ready to "Zzz" away!
1. "Perceptions govern much of reality."
2. "Do you enjoy your own company?"
3. "There is nothing normal."
4. "Being humorless [in class] is less of an offense than sleeping." (Clearly, he doesn't take to sleeping in class all that well.)
5. "Blackboard economics always works."
6. "The superbowl [is merely made out] to appear it's a bigger event than it truly is."
7. "Experience is a very good teacher."
8. "My two favorite books are The Grapes of Wrath, and Winnie the Pooh."
9. "You are not here [in class] at the end of a spearpoint."
10. "Charity is not a means to produce something."
11. "Nature hates a vacuum."
12. "Ignorance is bliss when it is a folley to be wise. [Which it] ...never is a folley to be wise."
13. "Don't hem, don't haw."
14. "You are tortured what you come to know."
15. "The road to hell is paved with good intentions."
16. "Don't just give me word-vomit [regurgitation]. Think. Think. Think. Think."
17. "I would rather play golf than work here for free."
19. "Do good by doing well."
20. "Adverse selection."
21. "Percentage change saves people from having to withstand calculous."
22. "Ham-handed method -- clumsy, more or less accurate, approximate."
23. "... undaunted in your resolve."
24. "Americans have been pig-head for far too long."
25. "... leaves one more confused than enlightened."
26. "You don't define something inasmuch as you describe it."
27. "Cooperative survival = democracy."
28. "[satirical] Thought to self: don't ruin Mr. Hasten's grand, metaphoric explanation."
29. "Money is meaningless unless you run out of it."
30. "That won't feed the bulldog in terms of economic growth."
31. ...going ganbusters."
32. "The heart of your criticism..."
33. "Here I lead you to the primrose path of error [deceiving lesson]."
34. "You know it as well as you know your name."
35. "Ergo -- Therefore."
36. "Earn a living, and do well in the world."
37. "[Have a] smug satisfaction that you know more than most people."
38. "We may never [fully] eliminate the oscillations of the economic system."
39. "Don't ever let past data lead you to conclude future data."
40. "Mathmatical proclivity."
41. "How much time and money do we have to spend protecting ourselves [referring to military].
42. "[They ] didn't [even] agree on the time of day."
43. "When there's no fault, there's no responsibility [Utilitarian worldview]."
44. "Mightier forces have to be at play... to..."
45. "You know you've arrived when the world comes up with an adjective for you."
46. "It takes a lot of horses to have a horse race."
47. "And oh, by the way... [Very common phrase found in Hastenian language]"
48. "[Sorry Raul,] I don't speak Mexican!"
49. "I think I'm going to join a Monestary."
50. "Poncho, get Raul, and get him a burrito."
51. "French people commonly say, [French accent] oui, oui, I don't care about living."
52. "At college, everyone is a little homesick."
53. "If you don't annoy me, I don;t annoy you."
54. "You seniors, do what you're supposed to do for the next seven days."
55. "Mr. Hasten and YouTube don't belong in the same sentence, it's a contradiction."
56. "For my money, which counts for more than yours. It does."
57. "If you seniors miss the final, you'll have an alternative assignment that is from the lower reaches of hell."
58. "It's not all that much more advanced than rubbing two sticks together to create fire.'
59. "You would hope most people of the adult persuasion would do the same."
60."It's a fun final!"
61. "No one will be adversely affected by the final, unless you are."
62. "I'm not the Holy Roman Emperor, so I have to work for a living!"
63. "I'm consulting -- that's code fo I don't have a job."
64. "Magic. Well, I am. [nods]."
65. "Keynes' writing, while brilliant is difficult to comprehend."
66. "Even a dead cat bounces."
67. "Even an economy that doesn't have way much oompf will be affected by some government spending."
68. "The dog bit me in the thigh, and I had to go to the hospital!"
69. "Take that Goddamn dog away, and shoot Father Ferguson."
70. "It's not for the money why I'm here. It's not. There are ten, or twelve thousand other things."
71. "Well, we've had cocktail parties in class before. I tell you, the students we're actually drinking!"
72. "If I drank, think of what this [class] would be like."
73. "I'm actually part Russian. That's the bad part."
74. "There's no geographical boundary to Poland, which is why everyone attempts to take it."
75. "Oh, and, don't drink too much at a cocktail party, because you're not as funny as you think you are."
76. "Why should I fill out forms if you're failing? Filling out those forms means I would work harder than you. Then who's failing?"
77. (on homesickness) "If what you're missing is worth missing, then good for you."
78. "If leaving high school wasn't bittersweet, then it'd be awful."
79. "Sushi's something you put on a hook. It's bait!"
80. "I was in Zimbabwe for fourty-five minutes. It's true. [nods]"
81. "If I worked for free, then that'd be saying what I'm doing is not worth very much."
82. "Part of the world has become more antiseptic."
83. "We live in a [largely] antiseptic world. Not all for the better."
84. "Students used to give teachers booze as Christmas presents."
85. "The only objective of homework is to complete it, and move on to the next assignment, which is why I don't believe in it."
86. "For virtue's sake! Find something by which to motivate yourself!"
87. "In the 17th Century, in the Netherlands, peopled payed more for tulips than for houses."
88. "... vomiting projectorily at the sight of our national debt."
89. "Economics is a foreign language that happens to be in English."
90. "Some of you [students] are sucking rear-runner."
91. "[If we had school during summer] I would be the least comfortable in this oppressive heat."
92. "Don't give up, you've come a long way, hang in there. In some ridiculous fashion, this will all somehow make you better."
93. "I would be the last person to say that economics explains everything."
94. "Not knowing economics in this day and age renders you illiterate."
95. "You have my best wishes now and forever."
Friday, May 21, 2010
So in her stead, our class has been presented with a clown, a white knight, a theologian, a philospher, a former Marine and alcoholic, a soccer player, a skilled impersonator, as well as a righteous cowboy and conservative, hailing from the wild, wild west -- or as others choose to call it, Texas.
Such a great variety of personalities all invested into one person makes for a highly entertaining, but at the same time, rather disproportionate classroom experience in which various Englishmen, southerners, teenage girls, and the infamous Beavis and Butthead will stop by for tangenital commentary.
So this replacement teacher espouses some highly conservative Catholic views for which may have stemmed from his fight with alcoholism, his experience in the armed forces, his divorced household growing up, and likely from a lack of satisfaction with the Anglican church.
And as I mentioned earlier, I find his class to be quite 'disjointed', or 'uneven' -- probably for his childlike loyalty to the Catholic church in which little questioning seems to occur, and a great deal of condemnation is delivered to my peers. Most of the time, his comments are more backhanded or subtly condescending, but there are instances where he'll scrutinize a classmate head-on -- all the while, implying that he is 'leading by example', he is the righteous one, and that he is the white knight.
In line with the famous quote, "W.W.J.D.", or "What would Jesus do?", I have a hard time fathoming Jesus would so viciously attack or scapegoat the less than pious in our class, and make light of the teachings of Aristotle, Plato, Kant, More, Saint Ignatius, Aruppe, and Day by sprinkling the aforementioned Beavis and Butthead references throughout.
What's more is that this unnamed teacher is well read in some of the most legendary theological and philosophical writings, yet insists on so juvenilely refuting my classmates in favor of a grossly traditional Christian belief. It is my perception that in order to be a fully committed Catholic, one must "make up", or envision the teachings in the Bible for oneself, rather than adhere to a standard, universal belief. (E.g. You believe that Jesus literally roamed the streets of Jerusalem after his resurrection, while I feel that's a merely metaphorical depiction. Now whether you feel that way or not, it's likely for someone that has an interpretation of the Bible that does.)
To be completely lucid, I only take offense with said teacher's remarks for he clearly has been unexaggeratably insititutionalized from school to the United States Marines, and yet enduring so much in hopes of achieving ambitions so tall, constantly reverts to childish remarks, references, jokes, anecdotes, and even scolding.
While I realize those mannerisms aren't exactly meant to be taken seriously, it's not only that he oftentimes lacks seriousness in the classroom, but rather it's the amount of disrespect I feel he has for our class. He will assume to [seemingly] no end that students attending our school have ubiquitously engaged in casual sex and autoeroticism, take, or smoke drugs, and drink alcohol. Now this is particularly where I find reproach with such a teacher's principles.
Regarding students overwhelmingly as smokers, drinkers, and former virgins is not the kindest and most reverent outlook to commit to. (And in fact, almost makes me wish to engage in all three this instant out of active rebellion. Although I admit I would achieve nothing but a warm sense of pride in doing so.) But my point is that being fully "Catholic", at least in my mind, involves giving people the benefit of the doubt, allowing them to redeem themselves, and treating them as one may wish to be treated. That certainly doesn't seem to be the case with this teacher.
For this, I thought it'd be appropriate to bring up the etymology of the word "Catholicism", or "Catholic" -- according the Etymonline.com, a widely trusted etymology database, the word, "Catholicism" dates back to the mid 14th century, and implies "of the doctrines of the ancient Church," or "universally accepted". I can only speak for myself, but I interpret the phrase, "universally accepted" as one having no barriers for which to respect another human being in fashion that Jesus may have, and being fully willing to acknowledge and include all people of all backgrounds, religions, sexual and political orientations, despite past decisions made in his or her life, and definitively because it is our Catholic belief that every person has been made in God's image. Now whether you believe that or not, it's sure as hell to contribute in some way, big or small, to making the world that we live in a progressively better place in which to thrive and love.
And to that end, I realize this teacher for which I clearly have mixed opinions, in fact has an ego the size of Texas, principals as insurmountable as claiming America for oneself, and is as hypocritical as the Scribes and the Pharisees.
Thursday, May 13, 2010
No laughing, winking, pointing, or talking allowed,
Utmost attention at all times is an expectation,
The man conducting the class, fearful to say the least,
With his eternally stern disposition and his peppery black moustache to boot,
He plays no games, and makes no [good] jokes,
He is not your friend, nor anyone else's for that matter,
But he is a cipher, a means by which to absorb useless knowledge of science,
Equations, facts, and answers are by what a student lives by,
Attentiveness, though is what said student fears,
For staring in such a man's eyes is likely to cause one grave insanity,
The intense look in his eyes is indescribable, it intimidates, it confounds, it is profound, but never spontaneous,
And by that regard, it is like an equation -- it is standard, and it is routine,
The class for which I speak boasts an undoubtedly militaristic atmosphere,
Students quiver for fear of being called on,
The instructor will uproar should an answer be incorrect,
Students will cry with joy should this instructor be absent on any given day,
His rudeness is only paralleled by his formality and seemingly insatiable expectations,
His expressions convey complete orderliness, discipline, and decades of arduous work,
No one knows for certain how to please this disgruntled old man,
A correct answer is met by a retort that in essence, says 'You should have gotten this correct anyway', nothing especially gratifying, but everything especially penalizing,
He shoots down one's most earnest efforts, and rarely approves of much of anything,
He is strict, does his work respectfully, formally, and sternly through clearly traditional means,
Do your best, and you'll get a half-hearted 'Way to go',
Fail, greatly or slightly, and you'll encounter the most humiliating body language and unrelenting verbal abuse imaginable,
There is little margin for error, if ever in this militaristic science class for which I bear each day.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Well, funny you ask there sport! Because during these past few weeks my "love life" [for lack of a better word] has seen some remarkable things.
So without further ado, there is this girl.
She appears to have few to no friends and is not the most beautiful sight in the world. None of this prevented me from respecting her to the utmost, as I duly would any friend, acquaintance, or stranger.
So as a stranger, she soon attempted to become acquaintances with me by exchanging small-talk between classes or during free periods. And naturally, she then thought we were friends because of this.
Needless to say, this "relationship", if you wish to even call it that, developed without any of my doing. I would deliberately show little to no emotion or enthusiasm as she attempted to start conversations in the library. Call me crazy, but I can only derive her active goodwill for me from my willingness to listen to her -- she seems very neglected, most likely for the descriptions above, which is admittedly a tragedy in itself.
As time would go on, her enthusiasm for me would palpably grow. It got to the point where she gave me a package of Mexican Sweethearts for Valentine's Day (for which, my lunch table later proceeded to "line around").
Then our school's Turnabout dance, where the girls ask the boys, came around. A short while prior to this, I had been asking friends for their Introduction to Economics notes. I can't quite remember exactly, but I must have asked her as well -- she took such an opportunity to ask me out to what she presumably thought as a 'legendary dance'.
But I'm getting a bit ahead of myself here: On that faithful day, I took the 6:50 Metra train that departs from Hinsdale to Union Station, and the agonizing 157 or 60 bus then to school, in which I would routinely unload and pack any books I would need for the day that lay ahead at my locker, just as I did the hundred or so days leading up to that point. I later went to the fourth floor, and sat at my usual, behind-the-bookcase seat in our glorious library. Nothing out of the ordinary, right? Wrong.
After the first two bells rang to indicate the beginning of the day at 8 O' Clock, I saw her approach me as she would weekly, yet this time she asked me if I wanted her Introduction to Economics notes. I replied, "Yes". Still sitting, I was curious why she hadn't given them to me in the library earlier. Then she asked me to come with her to the Beigel Room in a very coy manner -- I asked her why she couldn't get the notes herself and bring them back, but she made an effort to reveal nothing.
I was led to a study room, where she slowly opened the door to reveal three of her friends, holding some pieces of spiral notebook paper, improvised to ask me, you guessed it, to Turnabout. This prompted me to awkwardly say "Okay...", with an unintentional intonation, as if to reveal that I truly never wished to have anything more than a harmless acquaintance. She then asked me if I was surprised. I responded in a barely confident, "a little".
Now thinking to myself, "What on earth did I just do?!", I soon tried to think of any possible way to free myself from this plight. But I couldn't think of any alternative to not going.
"That's it!", I contemplated, "I just shouldn't go!". For weeks on end, I was looking forward to this dance, anticipating just what might happen.
So she aptly kept up her supply of disposable and worthless small-talk on that weekly basis, and I maintained my tradition of showing little to no emotion or enthusiasm, as her lack of expertise for anything sports-related became self-evident (she would ask how "good" I am at track -- obviously a question only possible to come from the mouth of a true sports-layman), and the weeks went on.
Then that day came. I had an indoor soccer game the night before, and a track meet the morning of the dance. And so, after two exhausting sporting events, I was hungry.
I searched for nearly anything in sight, and found several pieces of plum tomato Home Run Inn pizza in some Tupperware in my family's refrigerator -- a typical favorite of mine. But this time, I gorged. I ate nearly a total of four to six pieces. And to be fair, this isn't your average pizza -- this one incredibly rich pizza. After gorging myself, I slept. And slept, and slept. And slept, and slept (and you get it).
Ultimately, I ended up sleeping for a total of thirteen consecutive hours. By the midpoint of this deep hibernation, my parents came to check up on me. I told them how I felt -- whenever I would even stand up, I felt like I could vomit at any moment. I told my parents I felt it was wise for me to stay home. However, my father, in his typical proud manner, told me I should simply go because she had bought the ticket for me. I rebutted such an argument with the thought that 'If I wasn't going to have fun, she likely won't either'.
So my parents and I all talked for a substantial thirty minutes or whereabouts, and came to the conclusion that, despite her anticipating such a dance, it would be better for me to stay home and recover, rather than worsen my condition, whether mild or severe, or worse yet, spread my terror in the form of putrid stomach acid.
So if I was sick, that meant I didn't have to go to the dance! I was overjoyed, but I knew I couldn't reflect such an attitude over the phone while reporting to the girl that the fanciful night of her dreams was now a night of lonesomeness and regrets. So as I talked over the phone, I could perceive a subtle increment of horror in her voice, most notably when I told her that I could not attend the dance -- her voice probably lessened an entire octave after learning this.
I did my best in issuing rather vicarious consolements, saying things like "I truly I wish I could be there", or "I hope you have a great time without me". All this meant for me is that I could sleep, get this stomach ache out of my system, and that I hopefully had this annoyance of a girl out of my life. At the time, I don't think I could have cared less -- call me a sadist, remorseless, a "coward", or even an "asshole", I honestly don't care.
On the Monday following my notorious absence, I was met by ubiquitous incredulity among friends, and was informed that I "owe" this girl a dance (like that would ever happen), a task I knew I would happily never fulfill.
I had put up with months of her pathetic complacent-speak to realize what she had been going through. Finally such a mystery had been explicitly revealed to me as I went on my Junior retreat, which just so happened to take place on the same date as hers.
There was one segment that consisted of a lighting of a candle, and mentioning for whom it was meant for. After nearly everyone had gone, she still sat there, crying. At the time she had finally mustered enough will to go up in front of everyone and voice her sorrows, it was evident she was heartbroken by a loss in her family. (Don't bother asking me exactly what relative of hers she had lost, but I knew for a fact that it was someone tremendously valuable). She sobbed, barely able to communicate to such a mass of fellow Juniors as to what it was that had been troubling her. Tears dripping down her nose, nearly taking out the vulnerable candle that was clenched in her hands.
I came to understand how needy this girl was. She was looking for someone she could rely on, be a friend to, to share secrets with, and talk to on a daily basis. And I was none of that, nor had I ever intended to be any of that.
So what kept me from liking her, other than the fact that she seems to have few to no friends and that she is not the most beautiful sight in the world? To be frank, her overly bubbly, and oftentimes, downright superficial personality couldn't have been less attractive to me. Her conversations, rote. Her attitude, naive and immature. And her very existence, nothing special to speak of. To me, she was just another, teen boy-obsessed, saccharine, and Facebook and texting-savvy girl with very little earnestly unique about her. (And if you're about to call hypocrisy on me, have you ever met a German-speaking, bo staffing, video game-playing, writer, pilot, poet, and music-maker? Well have you, Goddamnit?! I didn't think so.)
And so anyway, what this whole "Full Disclosure" thing came down to was a recent Facebook status update that this very girl felt she needed to post in order to find that very bit of vindication she so gravely longed for. The text goes; "you put on such a front, making people think youre some sweet guy. But honestly, youre nothing but a coward and an asshole. I'm done. done. done. done. :)"
If you're having some trouble decipher this drivel like I am, allow me to translate: "You act like a douche, you're an aerschloch", or whatever the hell. Oh, and I think there was a part I missed in there, if I'm not mistaken, it went like this, "Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. Done. Done.". Did you get that? I think she said she was "Done" with me. Do you hear that?! WOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
No more of these awkward, complacent conversations!
No more of her hideous appearance!
No more of her saccharine, immature, and naive personality!
No more of this mind game, where she takes in every bit of positive social contact as if I "liked her"!
No more of her!
I'm through. I'm through, through, through, through, through, through, through, through, through. Oh, I think I forgot to mention, I'm through.
As days passed, colors changed, yet I felt I had remained much of the same. Never did I like this girl. She merely thought that was the case.
And, I don't act, or as she so eloquently said, "put a front on". I am Michael Lenoch, and I do my best each and every day to be myself. It sure may not be with a smile on, but nothing I do, I guarantee, is acting in order to be perceived a certain way by others -- that may have been your observation, but don't be mistaken, I do no such acting.
And for the record, I am not a "coward". I am merely a coward of fake personalities, and of weak relationships. Nor am I an "asshole", I just never liked her, it's plainly that simple.
She yearned for a pretty face and a back to lean on. I don't want to be used. Don't use me.
This is Michael "Flammen" Lenoch, going ghost.
Never mess with Flammen. Classic.
Monday, March 15, 2010
The edge of reality, the lowest of souls, forced to thrive in a troubling society in which crime and corruption run through the veins of the everyman. Computer domination, computers everywhere, computers in your head, computers on your mind at any given moment. A "whimpy" government gives rise to a youthful rebellion, man's answer to his own artificial creation of "artificial landscapes", while enormous multinational government corporations make up the world's military forces. Nihilistic forecasting is only paralleled by uniform and overwhelming transhuman behavior -- surely the result of years upon years of unavoidable internet use.
Thursday, March 4, 2010
Sending us all once again into the darkest of hues,
We need inspiration, we need some light,
We need our dreams to in some sense, take flight,
The pleasure of sex, drug, and food does not compare,
To that of the sun's glorious and bombastic fanfare,
Sad sights, and unpleasant things cause me to write,
But if I were to choose, I'd rather have a sunny day, rather than being encumbered by this plight,
We are all driven into insanity, madness, night,
When our dear sunlight shows no attempt to simply say, "hi",
There are an abundance of substitutes sure,
Electronic screens, music, and forms of entertainment that lure,
But the sun's intangible and unparalleled rays,
Are worthy of all of the creatures' collective and immense gaze.
By: Michael Lenoch
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
But wow. Is Chicago messed up, or what? Day after day, newspaper after newspaper depict houses burning, children being killed, police officers being outsmarted, and family members grieving in the wake of whatever such and such event devastated his or her family. Earthquakes, killings, hurricanes, and common destruction flood the covers of the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun-Times that lay atop my kitchen's granite countertop -- illustrating a far less desirable world, a world that if any of us supposedly right-minded individuals were to come face-to-face to such a happening, would be revolted by every profound sense of the term.
Now after weeks upon weeks of hope-free media coverage, I'm taking this upon myself to RANT a rant never seen before. Here we go. You have been warned.
The Chicago government -- what a sad excuse for an organization. I may be blissfully uninformed, but can someone please explain to me why nothing ostensibly ever seems to get accomplished here? Whether it's the poor economy, the lack of American jobs, the need for American jobs, or even the lack of money in order to enstate these purportedly life-saving American-based jobs, desperate fingers invariably manage to point in one direction, while avoiding an admittance of failure on one's own part.
Whatever, this country can tear itself apart for all I care -- no one listens to anyone, everyone simply acts as if they may be listening to the opinions of the public, then sits back down on their armchairs, pretentiously show a bit of concern, then loftily dispose of the horrid idea. Arrogance, failure, blame, laziness, an obsolete governing system, disagreement, vengence-fueled fury, this is in fact the city that never sleeps. We all just hate each other all that Goddamn much. It may be race, long-standing grudges, gangs, genders, political affiliations, or even God forbid, religion that separate us. But one thing is clearer than it ever has been -- this so called, "CHANGE", this biblical proclamation Barack Obama has famously claimed we are all in dire need of is not in fact true. What we quite simply need is unity. And knowing the American people, that will inevitably never happen. A kind, respectable American man is few and far between -- they are the ones that are out and about, not driving in their own cars, watching TV in their own homes, or ignoring celebrations and doing whatever he or she may want -- they go and interact, connect, and join in celebrations with others, they are the true patriots, they are the true kind men and women, they are the peace-makers, and blessed are they.
Sunday, February 7, 2010
ON SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 6th this trendy hipster was spotted lighting up LA's swanky sunset strip, hitting up nearly every bitty nearby, while managing to post up in Chipotle, a fav among many an effeminate fashionista.
This unknown coolio was seen at approximately 12:37, clearly after some massive ravage, [as evident by his slouched stance]. As far as we can gather, the dude's shades are going up for sale on eBay for $400, apparently "4 HAITI", the user selling the spectacles goes by the name of XxXP_Money420XxX.
That sure is a fine scarf if I do say so myself... Flammen like scarves... Ahem.
Zac Efron, say hello to... well, let's just call him XxXP_Money420XxX for the time being.
Monday, January 18, 2010
Never have I encountered someone so negligent of common courtesy, ignorant of other peoples' opinions, and so downright narcisstistic a person.
First off, this guy, or excuse me, this douchebag for some unexplainable reason sees himself as a sprouting lawyer and real estate magnate. Even so, I'm still not sure who he thinks he is. His intentions, as told to me, are to 'Make a lot of money, get a nice house, a hot wife, and graduate law school', presumably with flying colors. He intends to later go on to practice his supposed "skill" for several years, making some insurmountable amount of money, and buying out much of the Chicagoland area and putting it up for rent. These are quite steep ambitious for someone who generally isn't at all liked by a great deal of the school populace. I personally don't see him achieving any of his goals unless he were to endure a drastic personality change.
Debating with this egotist will invariably degenerate into senseless yelling. He feels there is no question he cannot answer, no problem he cannot solve. Slightly disagreeing with him is like, as he claims, 'denying 1+1=2'. He is just that immaculately inarguable folks, he is just that good.
Challenging his beliefs is another story. Whenever exposing what may be wrong with whatever he believes in will have him justify the flaws in manner that may be compared to a governor covering up a sex scandal. His logic oftentimes makes little sense.
Also, for thinking of himself as so intelligent is doubly ironic, as he incessantly will express a desire to fight. Something children and uneducated gang members resort to in times of verbal conflict. He simply doesn't know how to deal with his emotions.
This unnamed person, relying on his buddies for consolation whenever he may find issue with a debate, will immediately find support, and then reclaim his dominence among his purported "friends" at the lunch table.
This, (I don't even know what to call him anymore) is so stuck on himself that recently released blockbuster, Avatar, is something that because he believes director James Cameron has espoused "anti-American" and "anti-war" beliefs in his film, 'it is not worth paying for', and will therefore use a torrent to view the film.
The Douchebag concludes that contributing another measly $6 or so for the ticket price is like supporting anti-America and anti-war campaigns. Now correct me if I'm wrong, but James Cameron is not a politician, nor is looked up to for his political beliefs. The film is a piece of art, and clearly the retard hadn't the capacity to look at it from that standpoint alone.
It's one thing to be prideful and hubristic, and it's another to never be willing to look at the other side of the issue. Mr. Idiot considers American football the best sport the world has to offer. Now this is a fair sentiment, surely thousands upon thousands of Americans share the same opinion as douchebag. And are they to blame? Inevitably, many of them grew up watching American football, as it has been a pastime for much of their lives. But a great deal of these spectators no longer care as much as their 1920s counterparts as to what is American. We live in an era where it's hip to be foreign. People in this day and age no longer care what sport they're watching so long as it's intense, fast-paced, and a rollercoaster ride of excitement.
And while this is an admittedly petty matter, idiot can't come to grips with something that's not American in both origin and demeanor. I know for a fact stupidhead has traveled outside of the country, but to claim soccer players lack any physical merits, and that American football players are the "best" athletes, not even taking into consideration the miles upon miles of running soccer players do throughout ninety minutes, the physicality of the sport that has clearly fazed him, and the stress that comes big and small to players of any position, not knowing what impending doom may come next is ridiculous to me.
The dude can't bear to lose an argument. He always has to be right, whether that means citing some of the most outlandish evidence to back up his claims. Whenever confronted with a similar circumstance myself, I seize up in favor of sensibility. If I were as ignorant, or lived in a bubble just as this bafoon, hour-long debates would ensue, and no conclusion would ever be reached.
He clearly identifies with an objectively deterministic worldview, and strangely can't help but immaturely insult all who may disagree. Claiming he is a devout Catholic, his perception of benevolence, selflessness, and kindness have clearly been squelched in favor of assertiveness, agression, and egotism
All in all, this is a sort of person I deeply resent, egotistical, narcissistic, selfish, you name it, this unnamed fool represents all that I hate, and I mean HATE.
Expressing my emotions,
It is a quaint Sunday night, and I feel giddy,
I want to socialize all of a sudden, I want to express opinions with other regarding video games,
It simply cannot be explained,
I feel slightly anxious,
And am trying to alleviate that anxiousness by writing this,
I feel I need to talk to someone, but all my friends are in their own beds, away, preparing for a new week of school just as myself,
I look to podcasts as if to console, but they do little, as they do not allow conversation -- I sense a desire to be on a podcast myself...
Respect, honor and glory are no longer relevant; antinquity has claimed even the bow,
Secularism, and materialistic views, what does our society value any more?
Empty gestures and expressions they want to hear, like saving the economy and ending the war,
But when the supposedly beloved Haiti goes down under, we all are up in arms,
Then if we care so much, why hadn't we aided in evacuating the Haitians and all of their charms,
But now that a mere week has passed, and the damage is still done, the press no longer seems to care,
Shifting their emphasis to newer and "better" topics in order to with all the world share,
Short-attention spans? Who knows.
Barefoot, she is reluctant of the prospect of a blister,
Here she goes, once again, yelling a great bout,
Of something that truly doesn't matter, nor worth even a shout,
Be it of her hunger, an MTV celebrity,
This teen has no limit as to how she will express her extremity,
Laughing obnoxiously, and belching rather vulgarly,
I can't bear to stand by another giggle, however foolishly,
I must go outside with great haste,
If not, to another distant place,
Her intellect is thin, as evident from her humor,
It is IQ-depleting, I must say, as if not to start a rumor,
No articulation, or value of thought,
Lacking of any linguistic skills, they are something that unlike math, cannot be bought,
I cannot stand Jessica, I must be out.
Sunday, January 3, 2010
While the industrialism swells,
Little unity ensues,
An outraged woman, another drunk driver sues,
People disagreeing in yet another fit,
Will people in this country ever get along, will this year be it?
People constantly rushing, there's no stopping this urge,
No matter, what I say, people will continue to carry out their daily surge.
Maybe it's that I seek for a mere scapegoat,
Something I decide to blame, whether it keeps this country afloat,
Is it my fault, for I do not search for the ideal nation,
That sought-after concept, on their lips, spreads elation,
Is it that I simply choose to live in dispair,
For that I care about petty, little things like our air,
Or maybe I'm truly the one that's right,
And that all we do in this country is resort to fight,
For it's the "American way",
And we don't care what "they" say,
Because we're America,
And we're always the ones who are right,
Right for the cause, and you guessed it, again, right for the fight,
So you see, it's this silly pride I detest,
And if this country were at all consistent, and only occasionally not of two minds, then I'd surely forget all the rest,
But sadly, that's not the case,
For had it not, then I'd never be running this unending chase.