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Busted Up

This morning, just after the game of ultimate Frisbee started, I went up to try to intercept a throw into the end zone, and came down on my right leg all wrong. The leg hyper extended and my knee “popped” and I crumpled to the ground in excruciating pain. It sucked.

On the bright side, my friends are the best people in the world. They helped me off the field as soon as the pain had subsided enough for me to move, and then they provided ibuprofen, a knee brace, transportation home, ice packs, transportation to and from the Husky game, and a shoulder to lean on all the way.

So, my knee is in really bad shape. I’ll need to see a doctor on Monday to see how bad the damage is. I’m most concerned about making it to school and after that, work. I should be able to drive, but biking may be out of the question, depending on the extent of the damage and the speed of recovery.

Well, I suppose it had to happen sooner or later. Thankfully, my friends rock.

3:10 to Yuma and Stardust

After a week off of movies after seeing 13 at TIFF, I saw 3:10 to Yuma with Kunlun last week and I just got back from watching Stardust with Ananth, Todd, and Jason.

3:10 to Yuma was a disaster in my mind. By the time the movie reached its climax, I was so sick of the ridiculous decisions everyone was making that I didn’t really care to see an unreformed criminal tricking a kid into thinking his dad was great. Hopefully that doesn’t spoil it for anyone who wanted to watch it, but then what really can spoil a movie this ridiculous? I didn’t even find it funny, as one of my friends did. 2.0/5

Stardust, on the other hand, was hugely enjoyable. It immediately suspended disbelief (something that Yuma never tried to do — another failure, in my opinion), and everything happened just about as it should have, with just enough unpredictability to make it fun, but not so much to take away that smug feeling of figuring out whats about to happen before it happens. Definitely worthwhile. 4.0/5

Masters Notice

In today’s CSE Lunch With the Chair, CSE Chair Hank Levy announced that the department has secured funds to allow ten current seniors to enter a new 5th-year masters program that the department is starting. I am planning on being one of the ten.

First Day Autumn 2007

The first day of classes went well enough. With the help of a Windows XP scheduled task and Foobar 2000, I woke this morning to the sounds of the Halo 2 Trailer music (randomly selected). I left for class early, which was good because the first time I forgot my bike lock, so I had to return home and get it before returning to school.

My 7:30 BioChem hasn’t gotten too terrible yet, Advanced Digital Design is going to rock — we’re building a graphics card!!! — and Neural Engineering looks like it will be interesting while not too hard or time-consuming — perfect for a senior elective. Computational Bioengineering is tomorrow.

I also met some new lab members today, including the guy I’ll probably be working with on my capstone most of the time. He seems cool, so I’m teh happy.

I got paid back by Christine finally, from money she owed me since the Long Beach trip. Speaking of Christine, she was suddenly friendly to me yesterday and today, after not talking to me for most of the summer, and I’m not sure why. But these days I just assume the worst possible reasons so I can be pleasantly surprised if the real reason is something else. This also helps me avoid getting in to any more bad situations.

After classes, I biked down to the bus stop and took the 545 into work. While waiting for the bus, I ran into Todd, and we ended up taking the bus to the eastside together.

Overall, a good, productive first day.

Bike Back

Today while some laundry was running, I headed down to Recycled Cycles to pick up my bike which had been repaired there while I was in Toronto. The repairs came in a few dollars under the estimate, at $263. For a machine I use and trust my life to every day, that seems like a bargain to me. I got my old rear wheel and tire back, so the ride back home wasn’t as great as I imagined it might be, so when I got back after a wonderful dinner with my parents, I went out for a ride around Greenlake. Seems like I will have to raise the seat a bit, but the brakes work great, the rear derailleur has never worked better, and the rear tire has traction again. All good things, even though stopping with the rear wheel for the first time nearly sent me tumbling since the deceleration was so muich higher than what I was used to with the threadbare tire I had on before. I guess this makes me almost ready to go back to school. All I need to get fixed now is my brain!

Updated Autumn 2007 Schedule

Compared to the last iteration, on this one I have dropped CSE 444 (Databases) and added BioEn 499 (Neural Engineering). I am also considering taking CSE 401 (Compilers), which would be MWF 12:30-1:20. This conflicts with the Bioen 485 Lab (Computational Bioengineering), but I have already received approval to miss the middle hour of the lab from professor Wendy Thomas. Somewhere in here I have to find 12 hours to devote to my capstone as well (UPDATE: It is now included). Then there is work (UPDATE: Now also included).

UPDATE: The graduation plan page has also been updated.

   Monday       Tuesday    Wednesday   Thursday       Friday    
 7:30  BIOC 405 A
KNE 130
Capstone Lab
BIOC 405 A
KNE 130
Capstone Lab
BIOC 405 A
KNE 130
 9:30  CSE 467 A
ARC 160
CSE 467 A
ARC 160
CSE 467 A
ARC 160
 11:00  Capstone Lab
PAR 310
Capstone Lab
PAR 310
 11:30  BIOEN 485 A
 1:00  Work
 2:30      CSE 467 AB
CSE 003
 3:30  BIOEN 499 C
BAG 331A
BAG 331A
BAG 331A
 4:30  BIOEN 482 B
 6:00  Work Work Work  

Goodbye, Toronto

We just got back to Mississauga from Toronto for the last time this trip. The film festival and this trip are winding down. Fortunately, things went smoothly today and the films were good, so everything is ending on a positive note. First up was Reservation Road, a drama about two families involved in a hit-and-run accident — one is the victim’s family, the other is the perpetrators. As the story goes on, their lives become more intermingled even as the truth remains just out of grasp. It was a wonderful foil to last night’s Until the Devil Knows You’re Dead — it explored the same dark side of human nature but with characters that were much more human and much more approachable and believable. And it didn’t leave you feeling dirty for having watched it, also a relief. It was one of the better films of the festival, and I would rate it 4.0/5.

We then had a six-hour break until our next film, and extra train tickets due to yesterday’s fiasco, so we returned to the hotel where Dan did laundry, I cooked lunch for myself, and then Scott and I went on a bike trip along the same route as the first bike trip. This time, however, a strong headwind and high temperatures made the trip somewhat less pleasant.

We returned, showered, and headed out for our final film, La Citadelle Assiege. This was the one film I most wanted to see and it didn’t disappoint — it was a story about a termite fortress and the battles it had with the nomadic ant colonies on the humid plains. I’m sure some kids will end up with nightmares of being eaten by ants or termites, but the story was well executed, if a little underdeveloped at times, and the footage was fascinating and fantastic. Not quite on par with Winged Migration, but definitely worth seeing — hopefully it will be released in the US. I give it a 4.0/5.

After the final movie we made it down to the historic Distillery District where we ate some pretty good food at a nice pubhouse, then we returned to our Hotel for our final night in Canada. Tomorrow we drive home via the mighty Niagara Falls; I still need to get some souvenirs for friends so they will likely come from there. It will also be nice to get a closer, longer look that I did on the way up.

Goodbye, Toronto, and thanks for all the good times.

Overall, the best films of the festival for me was Mongol, hands down. The best part of the trip was the CN Tower, hands down. Now, back to America!