Friday, December 31, 2004

Happy New Year.

Happy New Year to all!

Just got back from a party and it was fun. There were about a dozen of us. We had vino and lasagna for dinner. Champaign for New Years. Woo Hoo. Calm but fun evening/night.

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

ssi.php - Thanks!

I have been trying to figure out how to strip and hack the code from the index page of the IPB forums, so I can have the posts from a specific forum displayed. The reason why I wanted to do that is so I can display the news on the Clan -(MP)- site. Until tonight what I was doing is have SQL table and forms to which I mirrored the news posts on the forums. That is kind of hard, simply because I am not the only person posting news. Whoever is making a news post they will have to remember that they make a post not only on the forums but also to the news form for the web site.

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Email signature generators!

Since GMail came out, I have started seeing many people add signatures and banners to their forums profiles and websites. The banners display the email address of that person. Why would someone do that? Well in the beginning the GMail was cool, not that it is not anymore, everyone wanted to show that they have an account. That is because to acquire a GMail account you have to be invited. How could one show off without getting his email inbox filled with SPAM? If a person wanted to display their email they would have had to type it out in they signature. That is plain text. Most of us know how a new email account can be spammed the easiest, leave it on some website as text so when the SPAM bots index the site they will pick up your address and store it in their database for the spammer to use or sell at a latter time.

UP!!! :)

Lori send me the following in an email. I like this little analogy of the word UP. It is pretty creative and brings UP some thought. Whoever decided to write this UP must have had some time on his or her hands to think UP all of this UP stuff!

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Is it a variable or is it a value?

LoL, just wiped up a quick script for the ad banners on my web site. I want to use different shaped banners in different locations on the website, but I do not want to make a separate file for the code of each ad. Why would I make a separate file for the code of each ad? Why do not I simply past the code in the page I am working on? Well, there are few reasons why I am doing that. They are as follows:

Sunday, December 19, 2004

TFnet hosts a new blog.

I just finished setting up the first blog I am hosting on my site for someone other than myself. Brad has expressed interest in the blogging concept after I explained to him what it is. Although he is not the first person I have offered to host a blog for, he is the first one to accept.

I was finally able to setup the redirect for Brad’s subdomain: brad.titanfusion.net. Who would have thought that a ”/” would make such a big difference? Hehe, it always helps to read the instructions. LoL After I added Brad’s subdomain, I wanted to redirect it to the subdirectory of his blog, seeing that at the moment in his subdomain there is not any other content. I tried doing that on Saturday night, but I managed to mess up the redirecting process. Every time I browsed to his subdomain I was redirected to nonexistent places and given weird errors. I emailed my host company and asked for some assistance with the problem and the DNS record. Expecting some kind of response I did not bother with it yesterday, but this morning I still have not received a reply to my emails from the hosting company, so I decided to give it a try again and mess with the redirect. While I was doing that I red a note under the redirect form which stated:
Note: If you wish to have filename redirection (example: http://brad.titanfusion.net/test.html -> http://redirecturl/test.html) be sure to end with a trailing / on the end of the url.

In bold letters on top of that. Heh, should have paid more attention to it before.

Although, the instructions are about files, I decided to try doing the same for directories as well. After all I was pretty much out of options until the host’s support team answers my emails. I had the chance to look at the code of some other .htaccess files when I was searching for some sort of a solution on Saturday, and there the “/” was present. I though why not, I can and did try editing the .htaccess file in Brad’s subdomain and adding the slash and modifying the code, but to no avail. That is of course until this early morning! I know that he DNS records have to be updated, but it never clicked in my mind that editing the .htaccess file would not be enough, I had to use the redirect form. The note above helped me to make the connection. LoL

Now it is all working. The SQL database is populated, and the admin account is created. I will create Brad’s account, and let him type away tomorrow. Meanwhile I will start customizing the look and feel of his blog. I am using the latest nightly build of WordPress 1.3 and I cannot way to start modifying the code and see what new things I can do with it.

The address to Brad's blog is: brad.titanfusion.net/blog

Gmail Notifier 0.4

There was a new version release of the GMail extension for FireFox today. I tried upgrading mine through that Mozilla update application but I received some error. Like usual the Mozilla update server is generating errors and out of sync. :mad:Ahhh Grrrr:mad: I just had to go to the author’s web site and download the new extension file from there. Like usual!!!


Saturday, December 18, 2004

Hoa, long but interesting day.

Today was a long day. I got up at about 8 o’clock this morning to unload a generator with Brad from Lori’s car. After that I went to bed for about forty minutes or so got up again and readied myself for the day. At around noon Brad and I took Justice to his basketball game. There we met with Lori, her mom and sister. After the game we all went and grabbed something to eat.

The damn double cheeseburgers, fries and mayonnaise are starting to get to me. Soon, I will have to change my diet!

After lunch we split. Brad and I went on to shop for his Christmas presents for his family. Little bit after 3 P.M. we went to Justice’s ice hockey game. The game was good Justice’s team won with 10 to 2 goals, which by the way reminds me that his basketball game ended in victory, as well. The score was 22 or so to 14 or 16. I did not really look at the score board on my way out. Following the ice hockey game Brad and I went to his apartment and I fixed the lock on his door and secured his computer.

Later in the evening we left to go to Brad’s cousin’s ice hockey game. He plays a goalie for the Syracuse Stars. A team, which by the way, his father bought just so his son can play on it. WoW Anyways. After we left Brad's place, I fell asleep in his car. When I woke up I could not believe that I had slept for over half an hour with the radio blasting and Brad driving through Buffalo traffic without me waking up, but so much for that.

Well, his cousin’s game was, hmmm, interesting to say the leased. I have watched ice hockey for years now, and I have not ever seen so many fights in one game, not even in movies. I mean these were some really stupid fights, for absolutely no reason. The players were looking and trying to challenge and piss off each other more than they were looking and paying attention to the damn puck. For two year I went to almost all of my brother’s hockey games and I have seen only one fight. Those are high school kids. This is a time when they are supposed to be wild and uncontrollable with minimum ethics on the ice. These guys tonight were unbelievable and repulsive. They made a mockery of the game. I can easily add the referees to the players, because the referees called every one in three or four fouls. It was ridiculous. The main referee had some control issues, and from what I hear they extend beyond the ice ring. Seriously, tonight’s game would make even professional hockey players, who’s fights for 90 percent of the time are scheduled, ashamed to know that some of these guys were their up and coming replacements.

Tonight’s game was a FUCKING JOKE. There is difference between a good fight in a game and fights as a result of players’ lake of desire to work at their sport. This is the first game I have had a chance to observe, but from what I here it is not the first time the Stars perform like this. Apparently these under developed, hormone raging, sense missing, bags of organs, bones and flesh tend to look for fights. Of course, this is not to say that the Buffalo team was not provocative as well!

As the game went one, one player form the Syracuse Stars had to be taken to the hospital. I think his hand was broken in a slashing. Another player from whichever team had his back hurt. There were also two players who were kicked out of the game for fighting. Another half a dozen were planted in the penalty box for serious violations throughout the game.

All of us were on our way home by quarter to 10 o’clock. We stopped for a quick meal at McDonald's.

The damn double cheeseburgers, fries and mayonnaise are starting to get to me. Soon, I will have to change my diet.

Now, I am finally home for what remains of the evening.:grin:

Thursday, December 16, 2004

A small website addition.

Here is something I did but forgot to post a news update about.

I updated my website with a Writings section. On that page you will be able to find the tutorials and essays I have written. Maybe in the future I will expend the materials on that section to other writings. For example, every once in a while I like to write movies and games reviews.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

FireFox Adventures Begin.

I decided every once in a while to write about my experience with the FireFox browser. The FireFox Adventures category will hold my entries about the browser. The same entries will be made in the blog I am provided with on the Spread FireFox website. So, without any further a due, here is my first entire about my adventures in the world of FireFox. BTW – WoW this sounds so geeky. Hehehe, here is the intro:

I have been using FireFox for a long wile now. I first tried it on Linux, Red Hat’s version 9. Knowing how long it has been since Red Hat 9 was released and since then it has turned into the Fedora Project should only tell you that it was the time when FireFox was still known as FireBird. I first tried it after I read on its specs page I did have to install it on my Linux box, I could run it from a CD. Those of you who use Linux know that installing programs on Linux can some times be not only tricky but a messy process, also. FireBird seemed like the perfect alternative to using the Mozilla browser, no need to install updates and manage user rights and profiles. I had burned the application onto a CD and I could start it from any Linux machine, all I had to do is put the CD in the CD-ROM drive and start it from there. Specking of which, I might still have that CD laying around somewhere. :eek:

Since its FireBird times FireFox has come a long way. It has become a flexible and reliable browser. Mature enough to be a major competitor among many. I am pleased to see it gaining speed and still preserving its original values of encouraging security on people’s computers and on the Internet. To add to the above it also presents an environment for open and creative thinking for new ideas and solutions through its Extensions features.

I have decided to maintain a blog on the Spread FireFox web site about my work with the browser. I will talk about my daily work with it, how and for what I use it. Most of all, I will probably write more about any problems I might have with it. So far I have had some DNS issues, unrecognized plug-ins, random crashes when executing scripts and Extensions failures. I have few in mind I want to write about, but more about that in the upcoming entries.

I will mirror the entries of this blog on my personal blog at thetitan.titanfusion.net

P.S. Nostalgic and somewhat wishful thinking – I would like to see the browser or some parallel version of it to be able to run from a CD again.

Monday, December 13, 2004

eBay Ad Lists Manhattan Judge for Sale

The eBay Ad Lists Manhattan Judge for Sale article is one heck of a story. It goes to show that people will do anything to win or out of despair. Yet, I am going to praise this artist’s creativity and unique attempt to help herself and to improve her situation. Although I am pretty sure that at the end all this stunt did was to push the scales against her for the same reason she acted like she did - the will for self preservation.

Wishes’ Circle.

This was supposed to be a short post about how wonderful I felt for a moment when I looked outside my window and saw the slowly falling snow. Instead, thanks to my sarcasm and twisted sense of humor, it turned into what it is now. I could go on and on with the story brining new events to it. Instead I decided that just few would be enough. If I made it too long, some of you might decide not to read it. Number of times I had the opportunity to end the story in horror, but I rather it had a positive and happy end.

Although it has been snowing all day and I have not really paid attention to it, and as much as I do not want it to snow, yet, I find it beautiful as I look outside my window this very moment. Somehow it feels great, kind of classy and traditional, Christmas is coming, it is snowing out side. Seeing the countless snow flaks falling on the ground simply makes it impossible not to think of something nice and have a smile run across your face. Of course that will last until the moment when you are in your car with fire burning in your eyes as the most profound words are leaving your lips. You are somewhere on the road, maybe at an intersection, and you are forced to battle the elements, provided freely and in abundance by the snow storm raging outside your car.

A moment like that simply makes it impossible not to think of something nice and have a smile run across your face as you remember a mid-simmer day. The weather outside is sunny and warm, with the birds chirping and clouds forming questionable figures in the sky. A day in which you had woken up and looked outside your bedroom window recalling you have the day off. You realize there is nothing to do, and it is time to engage in some healthy exercise with your other half. You begin to think of a romantic ways to awake your loved one, ways to have fun as you stay in bed for the entire day. As you arrive to the most romantic and captivating method of brining the morning sparkle in the eyes of your partner you turn. As she or he is still endowing you with a deep throat roar, you hear a mumble, which forms into the most dreadful words, the only words which could ruin such a wonderful summer day: “I am NOT in the mood…”.

At that very moment you feel a nasty feeling crawling up on your skin, your emotions are beginning to bubble. You remember of how much you love snow, and how much you like to ski. That is when it becomes simply impossible not to think of something nice and have a smile run across your face. Remembering how you swiftly moved through the white powder and a mountain shaking scream: “Ka-la-bungaaaaaa” leaving your lungs. Of course, as the memory runs in front of your eyes just like a movie, you recall how that mountain shacking scream had tuned into the ear piercing, glass shattering girlish squeal of: “Fuck, son of Bitch! Ahhhhhhh…”, as you see the figure of an Deodar Cedar growing with an incredible speed.

In that very second you are brought to the reality of the moment by the very same words you are remembering. You realize, you are not remembering them, you are screaming them as laud as you can, crunching the steering weal, body frozen motionless. The knuckles on your fists are as white as the repulsive white substance on which your care is performing pirouettes at the moment.

In this very instance, as your screaming voice caries through time you jump and open your eyes. Calming your senses and clinching something in your hands you feel the softness surrounding your body, the silk sheets absorbing the cold sweat running down your skin. You comprehend that this mind boggling stunt was only a dream and you are sitting in your bed. This is when you feel the touch of someone next to you, followed by the question: “Are you alright?”. As you fall back in bed you reply in a still fragile voice: “I am fine!”. As you pull up the covers you hear the same voice softly whisper the heart warming, self assuring words: “Wanna have some fun?”.

A moment like this simply makes it impossible not think of something nice and have a smile run across your face, followed by a mountain shaking scream: “Ka-la-bungaaaaaa” leaving your lungs.

HAHAHA - Checkmate

Lori emailed me the following joke this morning. I find it funny to the point where i want to share it with everyone. So here it is:
Checkmate

My girlfriend and I had been dating for over a year when we decided to get married. My parents helped us in every way, and my friends encouraged me.

 

My girlfriend? She was a dream! There was only one thing bothering me. That one thing was her younger sister. My prospective sister-in-law was twenty years of age, wore tight miniskirts, and low cut blouses. She would regularly bend down when near me, and I got many a pleasant view of her underwear. It had to be deliberate. She never did it when she was near anyone else.

 

One day little sister calls and asked me to come over to check the wedding invitations. She was alone when I arrived. She whispered to me that soon I was to be married, and she had feelings and desires for me that she could not overcome and did not really want to overcome.

 

She told me that she wanted to make love to me just once before I got married and committed my life to her sister. I was in total shock and could not say a word. She said, "I'm going upstairs to my bedroom, and if you want to go ahead with it just come up and get me."

 

I was stunned. I was frozen in shock as I watched her go up the stairs. When she reached the top, she pulled down her panties and threw them down the stairs at me. I stood there for a moment, then turned and went straight to the front door. I opened the door and stepped out of the house and walked straight toward my car.

 

My future father-in-law was standing outside. With tears in his eyes he hugged me and said, "We are very happy that you have passed our little test. We could not ask for a better man for our daughter. Welcome to the family."

 

The moral of this story is:

Always keep your condoms in your car.

Sunday, December 12, 2004

Wow, fun weekend.

Wow, this weekend was pretty good and interesting.

I cannot remember what I did during the day and why I was feeling the way I did, but Friday night I did not really feel like doing anything or going anywhere. But, I had no desire what so ever to stay home either, so as in my nature, I decided to go for a trip and went to Brad’s apartment. Heh that was interesting night! Apparently the planed evening’s activity was to duke tape a 40 oz beer bottle to each hand and see who can finish ‘em first. The rules were, a player could not take the bottles off until both bottles were empty. Thus, if you ever needed to go to the can and you are a slow drinker you, were fucked. You either go in your pants or have you girlfriend hold it for you. In this case Brad was set, because Kim was coming over that evening, or so Brad thought. HAHA, He laughed at the rest of the guys, but they had the last laugh. Brad’s mood changed when Sean told him Kim had said she is going to play, also, when he had talked to her on the phone earlier that day. HAHA

Friday, December 10, 2004

Don't be a prick!

Damn it I am so tired of seeing and reading of one person calling another a noob. It is so stupid. Does not matter what it is about. Everyone has started from the same place, same position, with ZERO clue, ZERO knowledge about whatever the subject where one person calls another a noob.

For example I was on the United Admins forums, and was trying to help another person, who did not know anything abut servers and was starting fresh. So I told what that person should do and even gave him exact lines that should be his files. Some other guy replys to my post and tells me that I should not provide file names to people, it might confuse them more. Then proceeds to call the first person a nood. Yeah OK, shut up, I didn’t see you give any instructions on how to do things. Second, I do not believe that the installation instructions of the plug in can be any clearer. But, if a person still does not understand what s/he is supposed to do, it is time for explanations and examples, which is what I had done in this case.

The computer enthusiasts and techies, yes their knowledge caries from one subject and environment to another. But, not every one possesses the same information nor do they understand it. One does not have the right of criticizing another if they know nothing about him or her or without helping to improve the situation. This is what I wrote back to that guys comment in which he called the first person a noob:
I don't think it will confuse them any further. It’s the exact same thing s/he would find in the help file of the plugin. I am just giving the same info in a different form, and I am saving him from posting the same question for another plugin. I am simply expending on the subject of how it works and what s/he should have in his or her file. Examples are always good, isn't that how the majority of people learn?

If s/he is confused s/he will ask more questions, but it is better than giving it to him or her ready without explaining and teaching the matter. Next time s/he runs into a problem will have to ask again and be called a noob once more simply because no one explained how the damn thing works the first time. Thus not being able to better phrase the question or provide more detail.

Probably should have written more, but I think that was enough. I do not think he will be able to comprehend what I am saying if I had made it more complex and had exposed him to logic. LoL

I know it might sound witty or funny. It might make you look like you know more, but fucking keep it to yourself. Especially when all you are doing is ostracizing without providing any solution to the problem on hand. If you have tried helping in numerous ways and have exhausted your patients with that person, then you can call him or her nood. But in that case it would be more of an idiot or stupid.

In my opinion, one can only call another person a noob only after a goof up. Now for that condition to exist, both persons must know the same material or have the same skills at a minimum. In addition, the one calling the second a noob should maybe poses a little bit more knowledge or skill than the first one. Thus having the right to call the first a noob. Jokingly of course. But do not call me that, I won’t be laughing.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Migrating HLDS Linux server from WON to STEAM.

[caption id="attachment_612" align="alignright" width="200" caption="Valve's Steam logo."]Steam powered logo.[/caption]

I found this tutorial in my back-ups from the old Clan MP website I had designed. This tutorial I wrote shortly after Valve released the Half-Life Steam Dedicated Server, but it never made it to the new web site. Now I am including it on my web site, simply because it is a more appropriate place for it here than on the MP web site. Another reason I am putting it here is because I am thinking to write other tutorials and publish them on my web site. The convenience of the blog database will allow me to keep the tutorials organized and still be able to present them to my blog reader.

Last update: Thursday January 01, 2004 12:45 PM

Hi everyone,

I hope this will be useful for all of you, who are having issues with updating to STEAM on Linux.

Here it is how after three days of sleepless headaches and swearing left and right at anyone and anything and trying to update HLDS 1.1.1.0, a Linux server update can be accomplished in 3 minutes.

Background information.

The -(MP)- server is hosted remotely. The host company does not provide any support regarding Half-Life, only actual hardware and administration support.

To translate the above, I, as an admin of the account, have to do all installations and configurations of HLDS by myself and rely on what I can find on the Internet.

I did not have access to the root directory only the directory allocated to me by the host company. This means that I HAD to use - hldaupdatetool.bin, simply because the destination path is hard coded in the standalone installation file – hlds_l_1120_full.bin

This guide is on how to migrate* to STEAM with or without administrative privileges on the hosted / remote server.

* This is if you have an HLDS (1.1.1.0) installed but it is still under the WON system.
Get hldsupdatetool.bin on the server.

Go into the directory which contains the HLDS server. It usually is hlds_l

You need the steam file from the Valve FTP server. I use wget here to get the file, if your Linux doesn’t have wget, use the FTP program provided with your distribution to get it.

For those who get it by FTP, this is the server to get it from:

Server: ftp.valvesoftware.com
User: hlserver
Pass: hlserver
Remote dir: /Linux
File: hldsupdatetool.bin

bash$ wget ftp://hlserver:hlserver@ftp.valvesoftware.com/Linux/hldsupdatetool.bin

-----------

You can get the file on the server by uploading it from your machine, as well.

Making executables.

We now have the file we need, now lets run it!

bash$ chmod +x hldsupdatetool.bin
bash$ ./hldsupdatetool.bin


This will extract the steam utility. Now make it executable.

bash$ chmod +x steam

Creating an account and updating STEAM.

Now we are all ready to create an account for steam, and to get the files! But first, you MUST have the box administrator or yourself, create .steam directory in the root directory. Root in my case was the home directory of my account. I hade .steam permissions set to 777, just in case. The only file which will reside in the directory is a text file - ClientRegistry.blob

(1) You must have the .steam directory, for the utility to work.
(2) Change steam's (the utility) permissions to 777.

./steam -create < username> < password> < question> < answer>

Here is an example how the fields will be filled out:

./steam -create you@youraddy.com hard2guess "is STEAM a pain?” yes

Now you know how it must be done so lets do it. Go make and account. Run:

bash$ ./steam -create you@youaddy.com hard2guess "is STEAM a pain?" yes

Steam will now update the steam client to the latest version

Getting version X of Steam Linux Client
Downloading. . . . . . . . . . .
Linux Client updated, please retry the command


It is updated, now we must restart the program.

bash$ ./steam -create you@youaddy.com hard2guess "is STEAM a pain?" yes

If all goes well it will respond with: Account Created successfully.

-----------

If you have any problems with updating, you can run the process again, but make sure you have deleted ClientRegistry.blob file from .steam directory. After deleting the ClientRegistry.blob file, when you run the process from the beginning of section 3, it will be like you never executed the commands before.

Updating the HLDS server engine.

To update the engine run the following command:

bash$ ./steam -update valve

This will update the HLDS engine. You will see it download all of the update files to the designated directories and sub directories. When it is done, all you have to do is start the game the way you have always started it.

Any questions and problems, feel free to contact me: Alexandar Tzanov

Monday, December 06, 2004

Got electricity?

Well, last night we lost electricity. It seemed like the whole town of West Seneca had lost electricity. It was dark every where, both Justice and Digger were freaking out! The power went out at around 7:30 P.M., it came back on around 9:30 or so. But that didn’t last for long. It was on for about five minutes, if that much. It was enough for me to boot up my computer and log on to AIM before it went out again. The electricity did not come back till about 11:10 P.M. After that it did not go out again.

We have not lost power for such a long period of time before. Last time we lost power was at the end of the summer last year, when the States had that major black out, after a power grid failed. This event also fried my cable modem. My conclusion about the power loss in our town last night was: Too Many Christmas Lights are On in the Town!

Loosing electricity during the day is fine, simply because it is still light outside and you can always find something to do that does not require electricity or light. Last night it was already dark outside, so the only thing left to do was either to sit in the dark and talk to yourself, or if you are lucky, to anyone else that is in the house. Another option is to go to bed early. That is kind of hard for me, seeing that I do not go to bed until some time between 2 A.M. and 4:30 A.M. So, I opted out for option three, and that is read a book. How in the name of the procreation process (a.k.a. how the fuck) do you do that in the dark, some of you might ask? I just used my head light, which I used to use when my buddies and I were going on our weekend trips of rock climbing and cave exploring, when I was still in high school. Oh man, those days were fun. I wish I could do these things again. Maybe in couple of years I would start participating in such activities again.

Folks, buy a generator for your house. It is something useful to have for the house, especially when it is pretty much winter outside.

Friday, December 03, 2004

Cool, and yet NOT that cool! Check your garage door opener.

After Lori returned home tonight, she asked me if I have been having problems with my garage door opener. One of the reasons is couple of weeks ago I figured out that I can open the garage door from down the street, way down the street, way way down the street. But, in the last week I have been having problems with that, and have had to get almost to the house before I am able to open the garage door. Usually people would think that it is time to change the battery in the remote, but this remote has not been used a whole lot, and I installed the garage door opener in the spring of this year. Second reason is that she was asked the same questions when she was out dining with her friend.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Hotmail mailbox storage boost.

I finally had my Hotmail mailbox upgraded to 250 MBs today. Something that was supposed to happen weeks ago if what MS Hotmail public relations were saying was true. They were saying that the mailboxes were going to be upgraded sequentially, starting from the oldest. HAHAHA, I have had my Hotmail account since late summer of 1999, keep in mind Microsoft took over Hotmail in 1998, and it still took them weeks to upgrade it. When Yahoo! Said they are going to upgrade the members’ mailboxes they did it on the fly. My mailbox was upgraded within day or two after the release of that statement. But all of that just does not matter, because I am starting to direct the majority of my email to my GMail account. Let us hope that rumors about it still being in its Beta version because Google Inc. has not figured out a way to profit from it are just rumors. I would be disappointed at Google if I have to redirect once again all of my email activity to another account, let say Yahoo!, because I will still have my 100 MBs of free space. Yeah I rather stick with 100 MBs of mailbox space and fantastic SPAM control and filtering than have to put up with volumes of SPAM and a SPAM system that is kaput and does not recognize any of my SPAM reports just for extra 150 MBs of storage, which I am not going to use.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Alexander - the movie.

Last night Caitlin and I went to the movies. We saw Alexander. I guess it was a good idea on her side, otherwise I would have skipped seeing the movie. For some reason when I was watching the previews for the movie, I just did not think that Colin Farrell is the right person to play the character. Knowing the type of characters he usually plays, I did not have the feeling that he would perform well in this movie. After seeing the movie last night I can say that I am pleased with the movie and Colin Farrell acted excellent.

I have heard a lot of criticism that the movie concentrated a lot on the “homosexuality” of Alexander. Yes some of the romantic scenes we very uneasy, simply because they were between two man. An environment not very common or one you might be used to unless you like watching a gay porno films. I am very much sure that if the words spoken were between man a woman the scenes would have been accepted by the public without ever giving them a second thought. It would have been something normal, just like any other movie.

Everyone deals with the expression of feelings and romanticism between same gender persons in their own way. Last night in the theater there was a group of people, I think it was mostly man, who in the typical macho self preservation behavior were cracking up jocks and laughing every time there was a scene of homosexuality. I do not even think I can agree that it should be called homosexuality, it was more the expression of love between two males. Love and trust between two mails can be strong and openly expressed without having to associate it with homosexuality. It is a bond. But in this nation and today’s world that is hard, because people are thought to be macho and crying, hugging and the open expression of love is unacceptable. Two things: 1) although no one thinks about it, and it is well hidden, as well as the modernization of communications and the speed things move with now days, such love and trust continues to exist between war veterans. It is hard to see that now days because people’s needs are pretty much satisfied in all extends. 2) I am not arguing that Alexander might have been a homosexual, but if you look into the history of those reagents at that time and maybe hundred years back and forth, men where not allowed to be with women until their twenty first birthday. I think it was twenty first, it might be few years earlier. Anyways, they would live in barracks and homosexuality was part of the traditions and ways of life. But that’s homosexuality not like the one portrayed in the movie or the one we see today, but it was a right of passage.

Returning to the movie, I was somewhat disappointed at the movie because it did not show many of his battles. Alexander had number of them, and the strategies he employed to win them were remarkable and brave. I would have loved to see more of them in the movie, but that would have made the movie longer than ever. One battle I would have liked to see included in the movie is the last battle between the Macedonians and the Greeks. One in which Alexander demonstrated his leadership and bravery for a first time. In my opinion that would have enriched the experience produced by the movie. Although there were only two or three battles played in the movie that is not to say that they were not amazingly well done, very graphic and fairly detailed. But a small detail I would like to note, which was misrepresented in the movie are the Persian’s chariots. In the movie they had a spike sticking out from the center of the wheels. Just like the ones seen in the coliseum scene in the movie Gladiator. The actual Persian chariots had two or three sabers attached to the wheels. I saw a picture of them on the History channel. If I ever come across a picture like it or one that shows the general idea I will update this post. Oh another things. Later in the movie Alexander gives a speech and quickly mentions catapults. Ahh, I would have loved some catapult work and the damage done by them in the battle scenes in the movie.

Just to conclude. I did not even know that Anthony Hopkins was in the movie. I have seen interviews and have heard comments about almost all of the other major actors in the movie but nothing about Hopkins.

Thanksgiving trip!

This entry is kind of late, but oh well; most of my entries are lat anyways.

I spend Thanksgiving with Lori and Brad in Ithaca with their relatives. It was good, I had good times and I was craving some Thanksgiving turkey anyways. We went to Ithaca Thursday morning, and I rode with Brad in his car. That was a fun experience. His car for whatever reason does not have heat. I checked the car’s fuses and Brad said he had it at a mechanic before, who had checked everything else and had told him that there was nothing wrong with it. I told him it seemed like the problem was coming from his temperature regulator on the car’s dash. It just did not seem like it was doing anything when you turned the knob to hot. Anyways! It was snowing / raining outside, so that made being able to see through the front window almost impossible. The damn window kept fogging up and Brad did not have anything to wipe it with. Finally I had something like a handkerchief in my jacket’s pocket, the type most people use as a head band, so I gave it to him. That kind of worked. LoL Kind of! It was good enough to clear the window, but because of the way it was made, it did not absorb any of the moisture. In the end all it did was to smear the water and any other elements on the inside of the windshield and made it even harder to see outside. After about three hours of this we made it to the house in Ithaca.

The rest of the day was, hmmm, relaxing.?! We had more of a Thanksgiving lunch than dinner, but it made no difference. I was able to get my fingers on that juicy turkey red meat and with it stuffing and gravy. Woo Hoo I pretty much ate all day long. You might as: Why the hesitation in the beginning of this paragraph? Well, because for entertainment we were watching football. I know most people make that part of their Thanksgiving tradition, but I do not like football or pretty much any conventional sports on TV. I enjoy them more if I am actually playing them. As a result I was able to get an hour and a half nap, seeing that that is how much sleep I had had between Tuesday morning and Thursday evening.

Latter that night Brad and I went to Steel’s house. There I was welcomed by his two dogs, a chocolate lab, which was huge, and a French Brittany. Needless to say both of them were friendly, very friendly, little bit too friendly, too damn friendly! While I was able to feel first hand, well more like first thigh, how my pants are a better moisture absorbent than the handkerchief I had given Brad in the car earlier that day by soaking the slab draining from the lab’s mouth, I was sucker punched in the nose when the Brittany jumped four feet in the air to lick me in the face. To top all of that I had to constantly guard my sack, because the Brittany just like Digger is a crach addict. Eventually the dogs were caged until the next morning. Brad and Steel stayed up to watch the Butterfly Effect, I went to sleep on the couch. Oh how much I love to sleep on couches – NOT. In all of my travels and of all the couches I have slept on, I have come across only one comfortable couch. Of course it was located in front of a fire place that burned all night and probably the fact that I had just driven five and a half hours at night also had something to do with it. But back to my story. On the next morning Steel left for Best Buy at 5:30A.M., I woke up and never went back to sleep after that, but I did not get up till about 7:30. Oh that couple of hours were fun, well more fun for the dogs than Brad or I. Brad was sleeping on one couch and I was on the other, the dogs were out of their cages so they were running freely around the house. Every time they went through the room they had to come and lick us. The room had two entrances, so they would come through one side of the room go lick Brad then on their way out they would come to me. HAHA Unlike me, Brad is like my brother, they sleep a lot. So I had the sense to tuck the comforter under my head, legs and one of my arms. LoL My other had I kept out so I can push the dogs away. At one point that was a mistake, because one of them while chasing my hand was climbing on me and almost stepped on my face. Brad on the other hand, with his love for sleep, just punched the dogs and kept on sleeping leaving himself uncovered and open for the dogs to come back, which they always did. :lol:

Eventually I was tired of hiding from the dogs, so I got up had breakfast and watched the news. Latter in the morning I watched the Terminal. I like the movie, good story although I was no too impressed by the ending. Just something personal, that is all. Latter in the day we all went to a hockey game in Rochester to watch one of the relatives play. After the game Lori, Digger and I headed home.

That was my thanksgiving. Heh, might not seem like much, but I had fun. Another road trip for me.