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Thursday, December 30, 2010

feeling poetic

this is your moment.
you have worked so hard.
between what your parents told you
and what society raised
you have tried your best
you have suffered
you have prayed.

they taught you religion
they filled you with fears
they measured your brain
and they watched all those years.

even the history books
were subject to sewer
they took out the truth
and added manure.

science is science
unless you can apply it.
utilize the truth
and come to rely on it.

this is the moment
you can make a choice.
reteach the unlearning
it was quite discerning.

or you can continue.
in an ignorant fashion
listen to the brain waves
feel the compassion.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Saturday, December 11, 2010


Man, this stuff is pretty cool. Im getting down to the nitty gritty, analyzing geocoding, and dynamic segmentation. Geocoding refers to the process of assigning spatial locations to data in fields that describe their locations. Google Maps and Mapquest use this process whenever you need directions off of the internet. This reference database (which is public knowledge) has a road network with appropriate attributes so that the address location will be apparent in real time.

Do you remember the census that we all had to take last year? Well, it is still being analyzed and recorded, however, you can access the most recent information through the US census bureau's website. A lot of the data is recorded as TIGER/Line polygon vector data, which is a bunch of fancy jargon for shapefiles. Most importantly, it includes street names and other such important/relevant data.

How is this important? Why am I even talking about this, you may ask. Well, because it really IS important. For instance, how do you think OnStar works when your vehicle is broken down? How do emergency services find you when you dial 911? Where exactly WOULD we be if not for Google Maps? LOST that's where!

But that's not to say that this technology will always be made for the good of man kind. It also has potential for great danger. It's common knowledge that at any point in time, someone can track you with your phone (or at least I hope people know this). I don't know about you, but it makes me a little uncomfortable knowing that the government can find you anywhere at anytime. And have you heard that Obama is trying to make the internet indoctrinated to American law? Yes. A government internet. Man this big brother thing freaks me out. I'm going back to work!

Monday, December 6, 2010


I remember the best Christmas I have ever had. I was probably 7 years old, and I had waited all month for Santa Claus to come. Patiently, I decorated ornaments in school, wrapped hand made trinkets for my mom, baked a ginger bread house and arranged ornaments all over the tree. Well. It's easy for me to say patiently now, but when I was 7, it was probably a whole different case. I wanted Christmas, and boy I was going to work my tush off if it meant that I would get some one on one time with Mr. Nick.

So I did. And I made cookies, and I cleaned the house, and I did my chores. My mother probably loved it, because I was the most motivated she had ever seen me.

And after all of that work, I stayed up on the 24th, determined to catch him in the act. I was going to wait by the door (we had no chimney, and I could not logically see him squeezing through the heater vents), until I saw the fat man myself. I stayed up until I fell asleep. I didn't know how tired I was, until I woke up Christmas morning, and there was a new teddy bear under my arm, and a Lego castle by the couch I had passed out in (yea I loved legos and knights).

Hands down the best Christmas ever. What is your best Christmas?

Sunday, December 5, 2010


So I get home yesterday, and after charging my phone all day, it still won't turn on. I grabbed one of my old phones and tried to check my voicemail. Apparently, Sprint cuts you off if you Roam as much as I do (even though I have always been on time and paid my bill!). So now I am in the process of getting a new number and I have a middle finger reserved for Sprint upper management.

p.s OMG FINALZZZZZZZ!! :D or, Dear School, bring it on!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Recently, my life is like this. Eat. Sleep. Work. Play with dogs. Tae Kwon Do. Jujitsu. Tae Kwon Do. Yoga. Repeat.

That's right. I'm going back for my black belt. I am rocking it too. I am sore and bruised, but I haven't been this happy in a long time. It's like anger management and zen therapy. It's energy transformation. It's something that I almost forgot that I was good at. And ..Im REALLY good at it. In fact, as I look back on my life, I don't know how I could have forgotten. Every good decision I have ever made was because of my training.

When I was in Portland, some of you may know this, but I was robbed.
I spent 6 months trying to get a job, and when I finally did, I was ecstatic. You have no idea the kind of depression you make for yourself when you are unemployed for so long. And the funny part, I actually WAS trying to work. Every day I would fill out at least 3 applications. I was going insane, quite literally, because I was running out of options. After about 5 months, I was just kind of giving up. I lost hope, and if it wasn't for Jen, I don't know what I would have done. I would wake up depressed, and the weeks would fly by without me even realizing. One day was the same as the other. That is, until I got the job at the Plaid Pantry convenience store.

And boy, was I excited. I got my best outfit on, shined my shoes, wore my skull and cross bones derby cap, walked straight up to the manager and had the biggest smile on my face.
My manager was an aloof kind of guy. His name was Devin. He had long black hair that he wore in a pony tail, deep brown eyes and a smile that seemed to say some explicit words to the devil himself. He was made of iron. His teeth were messed up, something about fighting his way through life even from the womb. Oh and did I mentioned his two girlfriends? He was a lady killer. No one messed with Devin.
And here I came, ready to work some 10-12 hour night shifts protecting his store. He must have thought I was some kind of goody-two shoes coming in there all clean and polite. He saw that I had a beast of a truck, though, and that was good enough for him to see me hired on. Yea, that's right. My bad ass truck got me the job (well...that and my amazing neighbor Lindsey). He just kind of shrugged his shoulders and mumbled, "welcome to the Plaid Pantry"

Now, when I took the job, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I didn't think twice about it's location, what kind of people shopped there, how big it was, or any logistics. I had my blinders on, I was ready for work.

And I was in for the surprise of my life.
Plaid Pantry store number 29. On the corner of 50th and Division in SE Portland. Right across the street from the North Bar, 2 bike shops, a crepe restaurant, a burrito stand, Barely Worn used clothing store, a mental institution, a Retirement Community, Tabor Park and a high school. I lived 20 blocks up the street, and on good days I would bike to work. On bad days, I walked home in the rain. I usually slept all day (much to the annoyance of my friends and family), because the 9 pm to 7 am (depending) shifts would really drain my batteries. And of course, it was in Portland, so it was almost always raining.

On my first day I discovered a lot of what would be going on for the next 5 months that I worked there. First off, people are crazy for lottery tickets. I can't tell you how many people (even in the wee hours of the night) came in for that winning scratch it of Powerball. The most I ever cashed out was $120.00...out of the thousands that I saw, almost everyone either lost money or barely made even. Or they used it to buy beer.
Second, people get pissed off when you stop selling beer. I just had to get used to this. It really turns you into a cunt, yelling at people to stop swaggering, that no you weren't going to risk your job to break the law and let them buy booze. No matter how cute they were, or how old, or how angry or upset.
Third, and this is just a general fact of life, most people just don't care, nor are they willing to care about anyone else but themselves. Most of the time I watched people, I was an invisible entity, like an automated machine behind the counter. I didn't have feelings, I didn't really exist. It bothered me for about the first month, but then you grow skin. And it keeps growing.

The truth is, I could probably write a novel about my brief 5 month excursion at the Plaid. I saw every kind of person from every walk of life. Old, young, rich, poor, sick, healthy, addicted, religious, insane, thieves, happy didn't matter. They were all human.

But the REAL turning point was when I was robbed. It was around 4:45 am when I was making my rounds and cleaning the store, when it came out of nowhere. I person in a beige ski mask and glasses came into the store, around the corner and into my face with a gun in a matter of a few seconds. I mean, that bitch was right in my face. Here's where the Tae Kwon Do came in. Instead of being scared, I was annoyed. Angry even, but I kept my cool...because. That's what you have to do. If your world caves in on itself, what good is it to be scared. Fear is something we all have, it is something intangible that we must come to appreciate and love like everything else. It is normal to be afraid, but it MUST not control you.

So here I was, with a gun in my face, with some asshole trying to get me to open the register. I calmly and slowly complied, gave him the 13 some-odd dollars that were in the till and 40 out of the safe(I couldn't open the whole thing, I wasn't authorized). He told me to lay on the ground as he left. I heard the door bell chime, I methodically locked the doors, called 911 and waited for the officer.

Now, you ready for the funny part? This whole series of events was apart of something so much bigger than myself. How? Well check it out

First off, this robber was a 60 year old man who had to wear glasses. His gun was fake, and his escape vehicle was also in turn stolen. When I went in to testify, there was another man in the room who was also a victim. He was a tall, older and somber looking fellow, who apparently had that Nissan truck stolen the week before the robbery and had JUST got it back from Portland police before it was robbed again.

The robber was an ex-prison inmate who had done time before for theft.

They caught him within minutes of me calling 911, because in part due to my accurate and calm description, and in part due to luck with the officer who caught him.
As he left the scene of the crime, he was going down Powell Blvd taking a right hand turn on 39th, when he failed to use his blinker. The cop pulled him over and kept questioning him until he got the call. Turns out he was suspicious because there were no keys in the ignition. Sha Boom.

So there's a story- in part. I think where I was going with that there is hope in being calm, but you must train yourself. I unconsciously remembered my training, and without it I would have panicked. That is the worst you can do in any situation.

I guess I should go back to work lol.

Here's some stuff on TKD :)

Taekwondo (태권도; 跆拳道; Korean pronunciation: [tʰɛkwʌndo])[a] is a Korean martial art and the national sport of South Korea. In Korean, tae (태, 跆) means "to strike or break with foot"; kwon (권, 拳) means "to strike or break with fist"; and do (도, 道) means "way," "method," or "art." Thus, taekwondo may be loosely translated as "the art of the foot and fist" or "the art of kicking and punching."

In 1989, taekwondo was the world's most popular martial art, as measured by the number of practitioners.[1] Its popularity has resulted in the varied development of the martial art into several domains: as with many other arts, it combines combat techniques, self-defense, sport, exercise, meditation, and philosophy. Taekwondo is also used by the South Korean military as part of its training.[2] Gyeorugi (pronounced [ɡjʌɾuɡi]), a type of sparring, has been an Olympic event since 2000.

Formally, there are two main styles of taekwondo. One comes from the Kukkiwon, the source of the sparring system sihap gyeorugi which is now an event at the summer Olympic Games and which is governed by the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF). The other comes from the International Taekwon-Do Federation (ITF).[3]

Separate from the various taekwondo organizations, there have been two general branches of taekwondo development: traditional and sport. The term "traditional taekwondo" typically refers to the martial art as it was established in the 1950s and 1960s in the South Korean military forces; in particular, the names and symbolism of the traditional patterns often refer to elements of Korean history. Sport taekwondo has evolved in the decades since then and has a somewhat different focus, especially in terms of its emphasis on speed and competition (as in Olympic sparring), whereas traditional taekwondo tends to emphasize power and self-defense. The two are not mutually exclusive, and the distinctions between them are often blurred.

Although there are doctrinal and technical differences between the two main styles and among the various organizations, the art in general emphasizes kicks thrown from a mobile stance, employing the leg's greater reach and power (compared to the arm). The greatest difference between various styles, or at least the most obvious, is generally accepted to be the differing styles and rules of sport and competition. Taekwondo training generally includes a system of blocks, kicks, punches, and open-handed strikes and may also include various take-downs or sweeps, throws, and joint locks. Some taekwondo instructors also incorporate the use of pressure points, known as jiapsul, as well as grabbing self-defense techniques borrowed from other martial arts, such as hapkido and judo.

The oldest Korean martial art was an amalgamation of unarmed combat styles developed by the three rival Korean kingdoms of Goguryeo, Silla, and Baekje,[4] where young men were trained in unarmed combat techniques to develop strength, speed, and survival skills. The most popular of these techniques was subak, with taekkyeon being the most popular of the segments of subak. Those who demonstrated strong natural aptitude were selected as trainees in the new special warrior corps, called the Hwarang. It was believed that young men with a talent for the liberal arts may have the grace to become competent warriors. These warriors were instructed in academics as well as martial arts, learning philosophy, history, a code of ethics, and equestrian sports. Their military training included an extensive weapons program involving swordsmanship and archery, both on horseback and on foot, as well as lessons in military tactics and unarmed combat using subak. Although subak was a leg-oriented art in Goguryeo, Silla's influence added hand techniques to the practice of subak.[citation needed]

During this time a few select Sillan warriors were given training in taekkyeon by the early masters from Koguryo. These warriors then became known as the Hwarang. The Hwarang set up a military academy for the sons of royalty in Silla called Hwarang-do, which means "the way of flowering manhood." The Hwarang studied taekkyeon, history, Confucian philosophy, ethics, Buddhist morality, social skills and military tactics. The guiding principles of the Hwarang warriors were based on Won Gwang's five codes of human conduct and included loyalty, filial duty, trustworthiness, valor and justice. Taekkyeon was spread throughout Korea because the Hwarang traveled all around the peninsula to learn about the other regions and people.[citation needed]

In spite of Korea's rich history of ancient and traditional martial arts, Korean martial arts faded into obscurity during the Joseon Dynasty. Korean society became highly centralized under Korean Confucianism and martial arts were poorly regarded in a society whose ideals were epitomized by its scholar-kings.[5] Formal practices of traditional martial arts such as subak and taekkyeon were reserved for sanctioned military uses. Civilian practice of taekkyeon, however, persisted into the 20th

During the Japanese occupation of Korea, all facets of Korean identity, including folk culture, language and history, were banned in an attempt to eradicate Korean culture and identity.[6] Koreans were forced to adopt Japanese names and worship at Shinto shrines; Korean-language newspapers and magazines were banned; and during the war, hundreds of thousands of Koreans were forced into service to support Japanese war efforts.[7] The Japanese efforts ranged from damaging alterations to monuments of Korean conquests/achievements to facile alterations such as changing the image of Korea's traditional map from a tiger form to a rabbit form.[8] The Japanese leadership of the time believed that by blocking the knowledge of younger Koreans, they could be led to believe they were not warriors in history but a passive race, and so the occupation would be easier.[8] Historians of the time have stated, "Teachers of Japanese martial arts were the only approved instructors. This situation began the amalgamation of Japanese martial arts with the remaining fragments of the Korean systems still in general circulation."[8] Martial arts such as taekkyeon (or subak) were banned during this time.[9]

During the occupation, Koreans who were able to study in Japan were exposed to Japanese martial arts—in some cases receiving black belt ranking in these arts.[10] Others were exposed to martial arts in China and Manchuria.[11][12][13] When the occupation ended in 1945, Korean martial arts schools (kwans) began to open in Korea under various influences.[11][14] There are differing views on the origins of the arts taught in these schools. Some believe that they taught martial arts that were based primarily upon the traditional Korean martial arts taekkyon and subak,[15][16][17][18][19][20][21] or that taekwondo was derived from native Korean martial arts with influences from neighboring countries.[11][22][23][24][25][26] Still others believe that these schools taught arts that were almost entirely based upon karate.[27][28][29][29][30]

In 1952, at the height of the Korean War, there was a martial arts exhibition in which the kwans displayed their skills. In one demonstration, Nam Tae Hi smashed 13 roof tiles with a punch. Following this demonstration, South Korean President Syngman Rhee instructed Choi Hong Hi to introduce the martial arts to the Korean army.[31] By the mid-1950s, nine kwans had emerged. Syngman Rhee ordered that the various schools unify under a single system. The name "taekwondo" was either submitted by Choi Hong Hi (of the Oh Do Kwan) or Song Duk Son (of the Chung Do Kwan), and was accepted on April 11, 1955. As it stands today, the nine kwans are the founders of taekwondo,[32] though not all the kwans used the name. The Korea Taekwondo Association (KTA) was formed in 1959/1961 to facilitate the unification.[10][17][33][34][35] Shortly thereafter, taekwondo made its début worldwide with assignment of the original masters of taekwondo to various countries. Standardization efforts in South Korea stalled, as the kwans continued to teach differing styles. Another request from the Korean government for unification resulted in the formation of the Korea Tae Soo Do Association, which changed its name back to the Korea Taekwondo Association in 1965 following a change of leadership.

One source has estimated that taekwondo is practiced in 123 countries, with over 30 million practitioners and 3 million individuals with black belts throughout the world.[36] The South Korean government has published an estimate that taekwondo is practiced by 70 million people in 190 countries.[37] It is now one of only two Asian martial arts (the other being judo) that are included in the Olympic Games; it became a demonstration event starting with the 1988 games in Seoul, and became an official medal event starting with the 2000 games in Sydney. In 2010, taekwondo was accepted as a Commonwealth Games sport.[38] It is therefore now included in all major multi-sport games except the Island Games.

Monday, November 29, 2010

as the snow falls

Im doing this one for my friends.

It was the week before thanksgiving when the snow came. I was leaving Tae Kwon Do when one of my classmates realized it was going to hit. "Didn't you know that it was coming?" I said. "No, don't say that!" Oh but I did! And it came. It sure came.

Life is like that. One minute it is one way, the next, well who knows where you will be. I have friends come...friends gone, and all that is remembered is some resemblance of a better time. Some memory, however strong or weak, cold or hot, significant or seemingly insignificant had some and passed in this weary drudge called life. But somehow, for some unknown cause, these people are more than a memory, even if you would rather not. These people were the garden that you were planted in, to blossom and support, feed and grow.
I guess you could probably tell by now that I have been doing some meditating. It's true. These past 6 years I have grown into this person that may finally start to be called a woman. And in all of that time, I have learned only one thing. That we are more than the sum of all of our parts, yet we are most likely less than the dirt we walk on.
And the snow falls.
New leaves turn, and old ones float past my doorstop.
At dusk, the warmth is snatched from my breath and the light is left on. So I go over to investigate and therein lay the most beautiful sight I have seen in awhile. A blackness behind, with gentle curls of snow falling against the yellow flood light. A rabbit hopping with ice on his whiskers and a dog keenly yipping at the shallow moon. One second in time. Less than a breath in, with a slow release. I closed my eyes. It is ok. Everything is ok. Life is still beautiful, you just have to keep remembering her. And she will remember you.

Sometimes I get questions like, "oh what's your religion?" or, "are you a person of faith?" And every time, I answer yes. I deeply believe in the power of religion. My god, however, is in these Nevada skies. It's in the Redwood forest, and on top Los Platos mountains. It's in the neighbor's hawk, or the tenants cockatoo. It's a rock, it's your table, it's your napkins and spoons. It is life, and she doesn't always pay attention to you. You must listen for her to speak, and then you must open the door youeself.

Of course this is coming from a crazy person who loves nothing better than hanging out with my animals. lol. Ahhhhh I can feel all of the neighborhood children not knowing what to think of me already. And you know what. I'm cool with that. For once, I just want to send hope and positive thought to everyone else. I hope you all to some peace of mind. And know, that life is always flowing.

Thursday, January 7, 2010