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» The Ornery American Forum » General Comments » Time for Introduction threads (Page 4)

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Author Topic: Time for Introduction threads
Chiu Chun-Ling
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This should be somewhere near the top of the fourth page of this foolishly long and unecessary topic.

I am, of course, in general opposed to participating in topics more than a page long. In this case I have made an exception (I like exceptions) and will point out a few things.

First, every person that wishes to be known can post a short profile, including a link to a home page with additional information. Because this information can be accessed from any post written by the person in question, by anyone that reads said post, it is considerably more accessible and useful to anyone reading the forum. It is also possible to have a web page with pictures, music, multiple links (yes, you could do that here as well, I suppose) and other nifty bells and whistles that are more expressive of the unique style of the profiled person.

Second, these topics are always long and boring and full of information that I don't actually find interesting. If I want to know something about you, I want it to be things that I can pick up from your writing or things that you have taken the trouble to present in a more interesting format. I know that I'm probably alone in this, but so be it.

Third, I think that our advertiser supported websites (like mine) or personally funded websites (like those that come with some IP services) deserve custom for this kind of thing, whereas I feel like these kinds of personal introduction threads are just using up space on the Ornery site servers (I know 'tis not a lot of space, but that's just the way I feel about it).

So for one perfectly good reason, and two more personal reasons, I wish that not so many people posted in this topic.


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Denelian
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i think the point here is that we sometimes need something a bit more personal than "I HATE BUSH!!!" or "I HATE CLINTON!!!".
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RedVW on a Laptop
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CCL.... sinister? I went to your multimedia presentation of pop up ads and found I know absolutely nothing of relavence about you...thats why we have useless threads like these.
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LisB1121
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I've been avoiding this thread, but what the heck.

I'm 20, female. I'm a senior at a small liberal arts college in Birmingham, AL, but becuase I have a scholarship I'm taking my full 4 years to get out of school. I've lived here all my life, but plan to go to grad school somewhere up North. I am a hitory major, concentrating in Modern Europe. Currently I'm studying a lot of Germany history. I'm planning on getting married after I graduate, but not on having kids for quite a while if I can help it.

I suppose I'm a democratic socialist. I believe strongly in the equality of oppurtunity in high quality education and healthcare, especially for children. I admit, I'm not sure how we as a nation can get there, but I come from a place where we have very rich that have sectioned off their schools from the very poor who can't raise the money to pay for decent buildings and textbooks. I understand that these rich sunburbs have raised there own property taxes to pay for schools, but in the mean time the vast majority is trapped. In the meantime the land rich in rural areas onject to higher property taxes state-wide. I'm am very aware that where I lived played largely into how well ecudated I am, and I don't like it.


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LetterRip
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We've had a number of new members lately, so it is time to revisit the introduction thread. Tell us a bit about yourself, and help us get to know you...

LetterRip


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dyany
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OK, then, I will intro myself.
My name is Dyany. I like it because it's unique (and I can almost ALWAYS get it for a username. ), but I hate it because no-one can ever pronounce it, so meeting people is instantaneously awkward.

I'm approaching the 3rd anniversary of my 29th birthday here soon. I live in Idaho though I was born in UT and grew up in Oklahoma. I, too, am LDS though I never went to BYU (neener neener). I work in IT as an applications sys. analyst/dba but my degree is in psychology. I've been married 4.25 years and I have no children, though that is not by choice.

I'm opinionated, mouthy, sometimes vitriolic (though I generally try to internalize that), religious, jaded, and a bit neurotically depressed. OK maybe not just a bit but having dealt with a version of bipolar disorder which includes anxiety, depression, OCD, and ADD, I end up being sort of someone who's intensely obsessed about something that makes me worrisome and sad, but only for about 2 minutes until I forget.

I like Truth, independence, people-watching, gardening, cross-stitch, reading, writing (and yes, arithmetic -- calculus *rules*), animals (have 2 cats, 2 birds & 4 fish), computer games, history, philosophy, music (play 4 instruments + vocal), electronic gadgetry, figuring out how things work, crossword and logic puzzles, genealogy, children, dabbling in house design, some TV and movies. I am currently working on accepting the fact that I cannot do all of these things all of the time, at least not well, and it has me very depressed (see paragraph 3).

Politically, I have been called a 'socio-republican' -- I believe very strongly in values that include fairness (C.E.O.s are NOT worth even 100 times a 'grunt' who labors all day in the factory, so they should never earn that much or more), value in human life, and a strong belief that there is a God who lives in all levels of detail, but because we don't know all of the details and most people on the earth teach what their 'interpretation' is rather than pure Truth, there is a lot of confusion out there and people sure get cranky about it. That sounds more negative than it needs to...everyone is on a different step, with different challenges, so it's silly to get cranky about it.

Oh, and I talk too much. =)


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timeskimo
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Hey, I am timeskimo. I am not an eskimo, nor am I named tim, but I have an inexplicable fondness for the name Tim, and should I ever have a son, I'll probably go with that one. As to eskimos, I know it's not quite politically correct, but I just like the word. I am 14, male, currently inhabiting south-central TX, and hate it here, so as soon as I finish high school, I'm getting out of this city, preferably out of the state. I'm currently a freshman in high school, band nerd hardcore, and have some very very small literary ambitions. I've got massive superiority complexes, but considering how much more intelligence I find on Ornery than around me, I'm thinking they might be justified.

Big on music, can't stand the folks who try to be stereotypes. By those who know me well, voted either a genius, a madman, or just enough of both to make it big someday. Depressive tendencies, fixation/obsession on strange things, self-hatred, talk to myself and laugh at jokes nobody hears, and basically am regarded as slightly off-balance, if not more. Politically, I stay away from organized parties, but the Dems seem to make sense more often than the Republicans. Am adamantly opposed to Bush. Not that Gore could be much better, but Bush can't cut it, plain and simple. Theologically, an atheist/agnostic who believes that if there is a god, he either doesn't care or hates us all. No absolute morals, ethics only. Me.
-Timesk


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Kaiser Soren
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Hi there. I've been lurking off and on on ornery.org and OSC-related web pages for a while now, and I figured it was about time to finally register and start posting. This seemed the right place for my intro to myself.

I'm 22 years old, male, heterosexual, living in Arlington, VA, and a recent college grad, no career yet. I think I'm a moderate on the American political spectrum, and have grown to distrust both parties because I believe they've both come to see the American political landscape in a simplistic "us-versus-them" framework, a liberal/conservative dichotomy, which I feel is destructive, unrealistic, and makes most rational debate so much more difficult.

I believe in individual rights, I think the NRA makes much more sense than gun-control advocates, and I see no reason why in this society gays shouldn't be allowed to marry and adopt. My views on foreign affairs are confused and contradict each other, and even after taking a degree in International Affairs I feel I don't really understand the world enough to sit back and make meaningful pronouncements on how the U.S. should conduct itself. Thus, my desire to go out and take a job abroad, and then to go on to grad school for a master's degree. I voted for Al Gore once, and I fear that one day I may have to do so again.

Now, whether I make the full jump from lurker to active participant, THAT remains to be seen.


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Luny
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You know, sometimes I dislike hanging out around here. It makes me realize just how often I have no idea what people are talking about. Politics I haven't got a clue about... ethics I understand. At least I tend to look at Ornery as a learning experience. Maybe if I hang out with you people long enoughm osmosis will grant me some sort of understanding, you think?
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Tom Grey - Tigger
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46 married white male seeks fine conversation. I'm happy with a Slovak wife and 3 kids (6++, 5+, justabout 4), living in Bratislava, 50 miles East of Vienna, ex-Commie (ex-Czechoslovakia).

Love OSC, agree with a lot of his opinions; especially on religion. Previously a radical agnostic, raised Episcopalian, (missing spellcheck), agreed to raise our kids Catholic and am fairly happy.

The Acton Institute and the Center for Economic Personalism seem to embody an excellent combination of Mises' "Human Action" with Karol Wolyta (now Pope) "The Acting Person". Freedom, with Morals and responsibility. Michael Novak is an important thinker in this area. --I'm libertarian (RAH "Moon is Harsh Mistress"), but not so materialistic, and now pretty strong against promiscuity (and that aspect of my prior life). Adultery is a terrible violation of a promise (contract). And the adulterer becomes one.

Men ARE from Mars; Women from Venus. If you want a better relationship, read that book.

I read tons of Sci-Fi when young; loved all 8 Harry Potter books (4 in English, same 4 in Slovak). Hovorim po Slovensky, ale mam zlu grammatiku (I speak Slovak, but have bad grammar.) I should be studying now instead of reading pages 1 & 4 and adding my notes. I think having this intro thread is great.

I'm doing more Blog reading now, too. Should have my own sometime.

Hope to write some notes to some more of you in the not too distant future. And happy to receive (and parenthetical jokes, too.)

The Kagan article on Weakness and Power is the best note about the different view from Europe.

Enjoy life -- practice virtue.
Tom Grey (fun fun Tigger)

oh yeah, computer games eat up my life, too.


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branmuffin
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Hi, I am a 18 year old male college freshman at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN. When not at college, I live in Memphis, TN. I was referred to this site by "Nathan" on here. It seems pretty cool, and I enjoy talking about issues and such. It'll help me keep up with current events better too, which the college life has drawn me away from since I am busy a lot.

I have conservative viewpoints, and I am Southern Baptist, so that's a big part of where my views that I will post will be from

I enjoy baseball, sports, the Internet, music, books, friends, fun, long walks on the beach.....

I have lived in Hattiesburg, MS and Memphis, TN, and I have traveled to Buenos Aires, Argentina for 2 weeks this past April.

So hello people <waves> and I hope there will be interesting discussions here, and I'm part of them!


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maniacal_engineer
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41 (when did that happen?) male, second marriage, 10 kids, LDS. Mechanical engineer, BSME, major in japanese, MSME. went to BYU grew up in LA (actually woodland hills in the archetypically suburban San Fernando Valley)
Iwas in the dumb group in school, until they measured my IQ in 3rd grade and decided I was several sigma above the mean. Not that I believe it but it did open a lot of doors. Accordingly I hate labels that limit people (dumb group)IOW a label that someone else puts on you. but if you put a label on yourself then I feel free to use that to judge you. Like when kids wear REALLY stupid clothes, put in REALLY stupid piercings, get REALLY stupid tatoos, and then grouse about why people treat them like they are REALLY stupid.
I hate deliberate stupidity.
Politics are libertarian (small L) Republican (big r) and I ususally vote against almost every proposition on a california ballot.
I have an interst in alternative energy, but realize that the reason it isn't being used is that it isn't actually economic yet, and not because of some oil company/ trilateral commision/ Jewish banker/ black helicopter/ second gunman/ aliens in area 51 conspiracy.

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Lared135
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Greetings all, my first name is Joe, but you can refer to me as Lared if you wish. If you have read OSC's book The Worthing Saga, you will find that the description of Lared (Laraled) describes me better than most. I am 41, married with a step daughter and live somewhere in the PRM (Peoples Republic of Maryland). I am very much a conservative and do my best to avoid going postal given how liberal the Maryland legislature and government in general have proven themselves in supporting the rights of criminals over law abiding citizens.

I am new to The Ornery American, but will be joining the fray as time permits. If you want to know more about me, please feel free to ask, if not, then don't ask... I strongly believe that Government should stay out of the every day lives of people and should provide only the essential services needed and that individuals should do what needs to be done by themselves. Too many young folks today think that everything should be given to them on a silver platter... I feel that if you do not earn something, then you will not cherish it... so earn it and get on with your life.

Joe aka Lared


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hoot owl
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33, new father. My 3 month old son is the joy of my life. Raised in the Bible Belt of Texas, converted to LDS at 22 yrs. old (my mother insists that I've joined a cult). BASEET (not as good as a BSEE, I know, but only the geeks will understand). Navy veteran, 6 years as a radar tech. Politically, I am almost apathetic, believing that common sense is neither practiced or expected. Have none of my own (another reason for my apathy), but stereotyped as "gifted" in elementary school.

Read more fantasy than sci-fi, but have enjoyed all of OSC's work that I've read so far. Also love to tinker and write. Would be heavy into photography if I could afford it. Love most types of music, but have especial fondness for Celtic and folk (including Cajun), and avoid Brittany and boy bands.

I design IC masks. Don't ask, it's technical, and not terribly exciting. I sit in front of a computer all day. Never seem to have time for anything. Will probably post sporadically.


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BanderLog
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I'm 27 and work for a biotech company in Salt Lake City. I'm about to finish an MBA and am applying to medical school. I'm married, have two kids, and don't sleep nearly as much as I'd like.

I think most politicians are weak, immoral people who like to control others by telling people what they want to hear. I think Macchiavelli was the best political writer in history and many of our nation's problems would be solved by someone with the guts to pe properly ruthless. I also don't know much about politics, so please disregard everything I just said.

To Tigger,

I used to live in Bratislava as well, and I spoke both Czech and Slovak fluently. That was six years ago and I'm now married to a Polish lady, so now I don't speak coherently in any Slavic language. Is there still a Kmart and a Little Ceasar's in downtown Bratislava?


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maniacal_engineer
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so hoot owl,
is an "eye see" mask one that has holes in it so you don't run into things? I am right now designing injection molded plastic parts for printers so that people can kill more trees. (well that isn't why but it is the net result)

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hoot owl
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M_E, I knew you would understand. It's so refreshing to have other geeks to converse with! What I do doesn't kill trees, though, just inoffensive little silicons.

Banderlog, welcome. I'm down in Draper, but I work in Murray.


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JonathanTheOmnipotent
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I'm nineteen, in my junior year of majoring in Computer Science and most likely minoring in Math. I live in a suite style cooking dorm--I make much better food than Stony Brook University offers.

For the past four summers--and for at least the future two--I've worked as a counselor at a sleep away summer camp (my unit's age group is seven to ten). Sometime though I'm going to have to get an internship.

I consider myself a retired Jew, retired from religion altogether. I'm liberal and I believe any form of government works as long as you can trust the people in charge. The perfect way to do this I think is to have the politicians live as socialists; take away all their belongings, give them governmentally funded living arrangements based on the national average income, and don't allow them to control a single dollar. That way, your senator's lust for money can't corrupt him because he isn't allowed to have any. Only the people who truly care for nothing other than serving their country will want to work in politics.

My goal in life is to work on video games, especially the artificial intelligence aspect, until I'm forty-five whereupon I retire and begin writing national bestsellers. It's just a dream, though.

I'm not always in the middle of reading a book, but I am constantly on the lookout for something that intrigues me, and I have plenty on my to-do list. I also write some of my own stories, spending more time actually thinking about them than actually writing them. I split the rest of my hobby life feeding my insatiable fetish for computer technology, reading news on the net, playing WarCraft III, and building the best Magic: the Gathering decks under creation.

I think OSC is a pretty damned good writer. Other than that, it amazes me how I can completely disagree with him on most things when he writes essays on ornery.org.

And, yes, I really am omnipotent.


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maniacal_engineer
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hoot, I worked as an epi operator at Signetics in Orem while I was getting my BSME at BYU.
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maniacal_engineer
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i am bumping this to the top because I am curious about the name sohryu asuka langley. Sounds japanese, but maybe in the CIA

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FlagStone
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I am old.
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Grant Morgan
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Just out of curiousity, how many Utahns are on this board? Maybe the midwesterners shouldn't be the only ones having an OrneryCon.

Thus far I've counted me, Peter, Banderlog and Hoot Owl. ME, are you still in Utah?


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Puretext
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I protest! Two separate conferences is just not fair.
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maniacal_engineer
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san diego CA. (much better weather than the midwest)
dont you just hate how californians are weather snobs?

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Puretext
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What's amazing is that they can be weather snobs when it's very clear that there is no weather in California. Actually, I can't say that from my own experience, but I know my parents moved to Oklahoma because they were bored with CA weather.
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maniacal_engineer
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I very much enjoyed 'la story' with steve martin, in which he plays an LA weatherman hwo pre-records his forecast so that he can go on a romantic getaway with sarah jessica parker.
vintage steve martin and does a good job of spoofing SoCal foibles - like the restaraunt L'idiot where they ask for your net worth before they accept a reservation.

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msquared
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ME,

We have the exact same type of weather you have, but we only have it for a total of two or three days out of a year.

I love the seasonal changes. Right now we are in prime leaf season and soon we will have snow, at least I hope so. And I will not have to cut the grass anymore.

msquared


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Everard
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Msquared, your wisdom in this matter is unsurpassed!
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Dan Allen
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quote:
What's amazing is that they can be weather snobs when it's very clear that there is no weather in California. Actually, I can't say that from my own experience, but I know my parents moved to Oklahoma because they were bored with CA weather.

If you want boring weather, try Phoenix.

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Puretext
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um... no. But I would like some snow with my freezing rain...

KB


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Kent
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My name is Kent.

I am 27, married, with 3 daughters.

I have been reading essays and posts from this website since its inception and I decided I might as well register and make an introduction post.

I have a BA in Near Eastern Studies (I always have to explain it is what we call the Middle East) and my Hebrew is pretty remedial now, but a minor in Spanish actually taught me that language. Hugh Nibley inspired me to study the subject of ancient civilizations and I know that he is probably one who inspired OSC to be a Democrat. I also hold an unofficial minor in anti-mormon studies, great fun!

I am a Mormon living in Utah (Thanksgiving Point for those who know) and served an LDS mission in Sonora, Mexico.

I have loved OSC before I knew who he was (he is kind and gracious in person) and I've read every book of fiction he's written as well as some non-fiction. Next to my parents, he has basically formed my concept of Jesus and love through his scripts for Living Scripture audio tapes. (My whole family quotes from them at random.) I can't recommend them more highly.

I am somewhat obsessed with the Constitution of the USA and the rule of law as my primary consideration for all political issues. I am a libertarian (small "l") for the most part and would like to see the three branches of government function as the founding fathers intended. (I would especially like to repeal the ammendment that allows us to vote directly for senators, resulting in far too little accountability to the most powerful "state" representatives).

Anyway, I have my own business doing whatever makes money and is interesting at the time.

Scott (and you other pro-life, conservative Democrats), why are you a Democrat NOW? To which principles or platforms of the Democratic Party do you subscribe TODAY? Would you disagree that Dubya doesn't stand for most everything that JFK embodied back when? I personally see the Republican party today as the Democratic Party before LBJ.

Anyway, just because I have a degree in studying the Near East (I mean Middle East (all of our geographic terms come from England in academia) doesn't mean I see anything there more clearly, so shoot me when I'm wrong. To you Jews...lahitraot!

[This message has been edited by Kent (edited November 13, 2002).]


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TheSilentAssassin
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Well, I live in Lubbock, Texas. and I'm a 21 yr old College student. I consider myself somewhat conservative, but don't really have a specific political affiliation. I seem to agree more with the Republicans, but am woefully ignorant of most issues. I love sci/fi and OSC, and I am three semesters away from a B.A. in English Creative Writing with a minor in Philosophy. I hope to be a famous author someday, but that will have to wait until I actually start writing on a regular basis. In the meantime, I hope to get a job with a publishing company when I graduate. I currently work at the University in the Dept. of Microbiology as a webmaster/tech support guy.

I know a little about a lot of things, but whenever discussion involves math, my eyes glaze over immediately. I started as a CS major, but had to switch when I got to Cal III and realized I didn't have a clue what was going on.

I love this website, although I find many of the discussions to be over my head. I tend to be somewhat anal about other people's spelling, but I keep it to myself, and tend to have a fair number of typos of my own.

I guess that's it....


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Kilthmal
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Hi,
I'm a first year undergrad at Georgia Tech as a declared Aerospace Engineering major, but leaning towards changing to CS. I only picked Aerospace because I get in-state tuition because of the Academic Common Market.

I was born in New Braunfels, Texas, but I've lived most of my life in the low country in South Carolina.

I think for most of my life until senior year of high school my main personality was simply that of adopting whatever idea is most ludicrous for the moment. I’ve been trying to move away from that to a nontrivial one. I also have something of an addictive personality, having logged several thousand hours on a mud (multi-user-dungeon something like Everquest only text based and much nerdier), having read all of the Wheel of Time several times, and having gone through several other very intense and fleeting infatuations. These personality traits have caused me to be easily influence by authors.

My author of choice at the moment is David Brin who’s caused me to take longer looks at ideas I hadn’t fully explored (eugenics of all the higher animals, optimism, and transparency being the greatest). One of my bigger disgruntlements is not having something that will explicitly quantify me. I have no real passions, besides, perhaps, politics and other questions of power and the future.

My name as some of you have already guessed came from Kill Them All. It has an innocuous origination. It was my nomer when I played video games (Diablo really distilled a great feeling of moral rectitude) that had to be shorted for some 16-bit system and that I’ve since used whenever I want a name without 666-69 after it

As you can tell I ramble down a great many tangents when I’m not ranting (which denotes a proliferation of parenthetical notation). I also enjoy silly and ironic humor (www.fark.com anyone?) so don’t mind me if I bust out with some nonsensical post, I’m conscientious enough to remain foremost a lurker on this board to reduce pollution.
Ok, I think that’s enough any of you will want to ever know about me and if not, I’ve enough words to exhaust any of your curiosities.

Thank you for your time,
Kilthmal

[EDIT]Added in some line breaks so I could actually READ it.

[This message has been edited by Kilthmal (edited February 06, 2003).]


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Puretext
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Finally. another english major. Perhaps now we can finally have that discussion on soft rhyme, alliteration, the ubi sunt, and narrative poetry...

or maybe not.


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LetterRip
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Greetings to our newest members,

We've had quite a few indivudals sign up or delurk lately, so I'd like to welcome you, and encourage you to tell us a bit about yourself in our introduction thread,

LetterRip


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Denelian
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w0w.

so, to quote m^2 "We have the exact same type of weather you have, but we only have it for a total of two or three days out of a year.

I love the seasonal changes. Right now we are in prime leaf season and soon we will have snow, at least I hope so. And I will not have to cut the grass anymore.

msquared"

hehehehehehe. its snowing more in Dayton! its snowing more in Dayton!

see, my problem is that while i live in columbus oh, i am FROM CA (well, northern. the part that really does have weather) and i bought a mustang. and its rear-wheel drive. and they don't salt the road liek they are supposed too.

i have no clue how i havn't died yet (driving 10 mph under, i guess)

hey, marc, is that mini-blizzard worth not mowing your (beautiful) lawn???


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EvanWeeks
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Hello, oh ornery ones...

I'm 23, male, living on an Air Force Base smaller than most corporate compounds, in the middle of Alabama. Montgomery, to be exact. Currently, I'm a Senior Airman in the US Air Force, also working part time as a barkeep at a local TGIF.

I'm left of the center on cultural concerns, but I like to think of myself as realistic on most everything. I've got a wee bit of college education under my belt. I'm about to finish my Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science from Grantham College in Redmond, WA. Yeah, it's one of those interesting new over-the-'net things. It's actually kinda neat. Ask me about it if you want.

I'm originally from the Atlanta, GA area, born in Little Rock, AR. Grew up in the middle of nowhere, Mississippi, then moved to Georgia when my dad figured out there was more money for a microbiologist there, and that having 3 kids and a wife and supporting them on $20K/yr sucks.

Will I make a career out of the Air Force? Possibly. I want my Masters in Computer Science and an additional Bachelor's in Mathematics Education, as my primary goal in this whole thing is to teach kids math. I see a lot of people these days with negligible logical skills, and I think, if they'd had a good teacher for EARLY math, they might have developed real skills for logical thinking. *shrugs* You know the rap. Changing the world, one kid at a time.

Anyways. That's me. Evan T. Weeks at your service.


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msquared
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Yes Den it is.

I love snow. The kids love snow. The dog loves snow. Mrs. msquared loves snow.

In fact we have been thinking of moving up to the upper Michigan peninsula when we retire. We hear that they gets lots of snow up there.

msquared


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Everard
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North Shore of Superior is good for that... they measure snow in feet up there.
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stormghost
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Following precedent, I'll expound in greater detail than is available elsewhere on the 'Net.

I want to avoid too-blatant self-promotion, but I'll start by admitting that I'm an author of nonfiction who hopes to write a publishable short story or novel one day (and then continue with more ). I won't go into any more detail here; those who care may look at my profile for the link to my web site. (If you chance to follow that link, I hope you don't mind the circular argument that points you back to the Ornery front page.)

I was born 38 years ago in Atlanta, Georgia, and grew up in the sleepy mill town of Georgetown, South Carolina (between Myrtle Beach and Charleston). North of Georgetown is the "arrogantly shabby" Pawleys Island, where a ghost known as the "Gray Man" appears to warn residents about approaching hurricanes. Having taken the Gray Man as my alter ego, "stormghost" seemed a fitting nom-de-plume.

Clemson University bestowed on me a BSME, albeit reluctantly since I squeaked through most of my math and engineering courses (English and humanities saved my GPA). Later I acquired an MS in Management. I consider myself a "failed" engineer.

I'm in my 17th year as a US Air Force officer, having been at various times a bioenvironmental engineer, a launch complex engineer, an instructor, a truck driver, a satellite operator, etc. My duty stations have included Offutt AFB, Nebraska; Edwards AFB and Vandenberg AFB, California; Thule Air Base, Greenland; etc. We're stationed in Northern Virginia now. By "we," I include my wife and our two children (ages 15 and 11).

I may as well tackle now the twin favorites of religion and politics.

I'm a Christian, more devoted than devout, familiar with and respectful of many traditions. I've also read the Koran, Lao Tzu, etc., which have opened my eyes to other ideas but also focused my vision on Christ.

The GOP is my party of choice, though I exhibit a streak of libertarianism now and again. I might be considered a "liberal" in the literal sense of espousing individual freedom, with the caveats that rights carry responsibilities; one of the chief freedoms is the freedom to fail; and exercising choice means accepting the consequences of those choices. (Avoiding any consistency, foolish or otherwise, I support and work for improvements in public education.)

I own more guns than cars. I commute to work in a little Ford pickup. My midlife crisis car, whenever I can afford it, will be a truck.

My music taste is eclectic. I own more LP records than CDs, and expect that some of those LPs will never make it CD unless I do it myself. Growing up I gravitated to Rush, ELP, Led Zeppelin, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Kansas, etc.; later, Hootie & the Blowfish, Indigo Girls, Sinead O'Connor, Enigma, etc. Mostly I listen to contemporary Christian music: Chris Rice, Jennifer Knapp, Steven Curtis Chapman, Newsboys, Third Day, etc. To illustrate my brand of arrogance, if I could choose a theme song for my life, it would be "New World Man" by Rush. As for making music, I sing; sometimes I know a few guitar chords.

On my SF bookshelf: lots of Heinlein, lots of Card, several Niven, plus a smattering of Forward, LeGuin, Brin, Silverberg. On other shelves: Ayn Rand, Kurt Vonnegut, Daniel Boorstin, John Keegan. Occasionally I fixate on reading things I missed in my engineering education, so I've picked up the odd Shakespeare, Hemingway, A.C. Doyle, Arthur Heller, Melville. I'll never have time to read all the books I own, because I keep buying more then checking out others from the library! I most recently finished Peggy Noonan's When Character Was King. The next fiction I read will be Card's Lost Boys, which I bought with my Christmas gift card.

And that, my virtual friends, is more than you ever wanted to know! I wish I had enough time for posting to make up for my long-time (2 years) lurking, but I type too slowly and usually go to bed too early. Hopefully I can add some germane comments to a few threads now and then.

I return you now to your regularly scheduled programming, and remain at your service,

G

PS for Kentuckian: I believe my best friend might have taught one or more of your history classes at Murray State. He left last year to return to Mississippi State, where in December he received his Doctorate; he would have been known for a unique teaching style (including wielding a plastic axe while lecturing on Viking exploits). Let me know! G


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