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I woke before 7:30 and got to work around 8:15, but grew tired by 5:00 and returned home via Costco where I picked up some drugs and food for the cabin activites that start tomorrow. The family then headed to the Space Needle, where we had a 9:15 reservation. After spending some time on the obervation deck, we were paged down to the resturant, which made a little over two full revolutions while we ate. We were treated to two complimentary starters, due, I believe, to the 15 minute delay we had before being seated. We chose the crab cakes and the satay sampler, both were good. For my main course, I had the pan seared wild salmon, which was excellent (although I have had better). I nibbled a little at other people’s deserts, but ordered none myself. On the way back to the vehicle, I finished the job started by a wayward car of knocking over a parking limit limit sign. My cousin thought it would be a perfect gift for her boyfriend, but she didn’t think getting it back home would be practical. So, thats the day in review, but what about the title, you ask?

Well, thats where it gets fun. After making it home, we gathered for a family prayer. Me, being in a light mood after a fine meal and a deep conversation on the ride home, took it upon myself to committ a crime of convinience, using some rubber bands that happened to be lying around to zing the speaker and my cousin. The result was a nearly endless fit of laughter that spread thoughout the group. It was great. Proof, my aunt says, that God has a sense of humor.

The Plan

Considering recent anomalies in my sleep patterns, I have developed the following 5-day plan (actually its a week-long plan, but I wanted to sound more Maoist), and I post it here publically so that there is a system of accountability in place.

I plan on going to bed ealier and earlier over successive days of the next week. The baseline is going to be around 1:00am today. Tomorrow, I will aim for midnight, and I’ll try to work it back to 11:00pm or 10:00pm by the end of the week. Simultaneously, I will set my alarm earlier and earlier, and I will not hit snooze. I will wake, shower, and get to work early, so I can put in a full day and leave early and pursue hobbies and other interests. I will aim for 7 hours of sleep a night nominal.

Wish me luck.

Strange Happenings in Ryan-Land

On the bumper of my truck today, I found the most curious sticker: “Gun Control means using both hands.” Strangely appropriate considering my recent posts. But I didn’t put it there, and I was at a loss for who would have put it there. I called around some and after getting testimony from my dad, and my cousin, I narrowed in on my uncle as the primary suspect. It wasn’t until I later talked to my borther that I got the full story. It seems that he and my uncle were walking around Seattle when they came upon a little hole-in-the-wall store selling all sorts of provocative political slogans. They found one that suited my temperment, then attached it to my bumper. I’m not sure which is more extraordinary – that they were doing this before I even posted the infamous gun control post, or that the first thing I saw that had changed outside after writing that post was this bumper sticker. Let me tell you what a strange that is.

In other news, my team lost 20-16 when we were offed of the soccer field by the soccer teams that showed up. I played barefoot to honor Brian, an that adversely affected my performance. And while its good to have Jacob’s throw and fire back, he also tends to incite everyone a little. I don’t generally have a problem with it (except for the one incident, but thats another story), but Talor, who has never had a problem up to this point, stormed off today, and Ben, usually a cool cat, almost did the same. I’m not sure quite how he does it, but its like theres a mean streak in there just waiting to come out. Its a bit scary – I don’t want another incident, but I’m not willing to let this great tradition of ultimate we’ve built up be ruined by one incitor either.

In response

First, read Bernie’s comment on my last post.

Excerpt from his link: Firearm ownership in the home is associated with an increased risk of unintentional firearm fatalities among children. …No, really?

Bear in mind, Bernie et al., that I advocate libertarianism primarily at the national level. I think the states should adopt a variety of presumably widely differing laws on all sorts of issues, ranging from gun restrictions and regulation to abortion to business taxes et cetera.

Bear in mind that the powers granted and restricted in the Constitution of the United States of America apply, in almost all cases only to the federal government. For example, I do not believe it is against the US constitution for California (for example), to outlaw guns entirely. It would be an interesting experiment (and I predict a terribly catastrophic one), but whichever way it goes, even if I am wrong in my prediction, we would have learned some new, useful information which it is currently impossible to learn because all the the states are so homogenized by the pervasive federal government.

Yes, it is sad that children die from unintentional and intentional gun violence. But if you want to throw statistics around, check out these automotive death statistics. Why in the world don’t we outlaw cars before guns. After all, Americans own millions are cars, and I’d venture a guess that more people own cars than own guns (such as myself). Yet here is just one comparison (I leave the rest to you):

Automotive: 972 deaths of children 7 and under (2003)
Guns: more than 180 children ages 14 and under died from unintentional firearm-related injuries (1995)

Hmmmm… The simple truth is, far, far, far more people, including children, die from cars than guns, yet we hapily go on allowing cars to drive around (although we pile so many regulations on them that the least expensive cars are still out of the price range of the poorest families, further exacerbating their inability to lift themselves out of their plight), because, so far, their usefulness far outweighs the damage they cause. Now, some might argue that guns aren’t useful, therefore it does make sense to outlaw them where it doesn’t make sense to outlaw cars. But those people are projecting their opinions of usefulness onto others, and they are wrong. I, for one, consider guns to be extremely useful. True, not as useful as cars (which are a cornerstone of our modern society), but certainly more useful than the accidental – and purposeful illegal – deaths they cause each year.

And, since it is so easy to twist statistics whichever way one pleases, I thought I’d use the statistics from Bernie’s link to paint a very different picture.
223 million firearms owned by americans
1680 accidental deaths and injuries of children 14 and under with firearms

That means that 0.0007% of guns are accidently discharged and hurt of child. That kind of statistic makes guns seem like a pretty safe thing to have around. Who wants to bet that kids have a higher probability of falling down stairs and getting hurt or killed than they do of accidentally shooting themselves or a friend with a gun?Anyone want to do the research?

Drive safely. Peace.

Vote Freedom First

“I’m George W. Bush and You can trust ME to run your life.”
“I’m John Kerry and You can trust ME to run your life.”
“I’m Raplh Nader and You can trust ME to run your life.”
“I’m Michael Badnarik and I trust YOU to run your own life.”

“The reason we can’t find a relationship between the Constitution and the government is that there is none.” — Michael Badnarik

Gun Control Means Being Able to Hit your Target


So Much

Well, life is going to be crazy again this week. We have an aunt, uncle, and cousin with us right now, and part of my job is to help entertain them. Tomorrow we are climbing Mount Si. Meet me at my house at 2:30 if you are interested in coming. Then of course tomorrow is also the hack session, at Larry’s, starting at six. At the hack session, we should start getting the robot to move around and resist turning using the gyro. We’ll also be working on hooking up the encoders. I hope I’ll be able to squeeze the hike in and not be too late. Thursday is the last Thursday game I’ll be playing at Robinswood for a while, since I recieved an invitation from Bob to join a UW intramural team that plays on Thursdays and that sounds divine. Its already started, but I’ll still be at Robinswood this Thursday, because its Brian’s last day this summer. Jacob came to the game today (which my team lost by two) for the first time in a while, and it was good to see him again, especially his cross-field throws and wild jumping catches. A group of kids on a mission trip from Montana, Texas, and Tennessee joing us for the last 20 minutes, and helped us pull from 6 down to within two, but as time expired, we couldn’t convert the last point and were unable to force overtime. The extended family leaves Saturday morning, and I’m debating going to Greg’s cabin Friday night as originally planned or Saturday after frisbee, so that I can do a Friday night activity with the fam-fam. The weekend hack session could potentially be on Sunday then, around noon, an then of course there’s soccer at 60 acres park at 6. Then on top of that I have work, and things are speeding up again, but my configuration program seems to be coming along at a pretty good clip itself.

Back From Utah

Sorry for the dearth of posts, but I didn’t find much internet access on my recent trip to Utah for a family reunion. Otherwise the trip was most excellent. For the first time, I really started to like this whole family reunion thing somewhat. Before, its been more as something that I just did because it was being done, but this time I enjoyed myself quite a bit and have found that a lot of my family is pretty cool in their own way.

Aside from the whole mother-bought-a-bed-900-miles-away-from-home thing, the trip went pretty smoothly until she managed to get noticed by a cop traveling somewhere bewtween 78 (her story) and 83 (his sotry) miles per hour. On a not-so-side note, a future post may be the first to be password protected.

I’ll catch up more later.