About Me

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I was born, I'm currently living, and will eventually die. After that I face my judgment, and we'll talk then.


Monday, June 28, 2010

A new company

Need some photos taken? I mean GOOD photos taken? Newly engaged? Getting married? Um, desperate for someone special, and want the most AWESOME profile picture ever?

Look no further than Colin Mason Photography. Colin brings with each shot years of camera experience, involving both still and video cameras. Each shot, as the portfolio shows, demonstrate an artistic vision rarely seen for such affordable prices.

Check him out at http://www.colinmasonphoto.com. At the very least, you get to look at awesome photos.


Need some videos shot, as in, not with a gun? Then talk to the guys at Mirandum Pictures. Yes, these are the same guys I work with to produce some rather interesting short films. As movie lovers, they know film making inside and out. They aim for quality and bring it to everyone, not just the people who shell out $5000 per day for a high quality video. With Mirandum Pictures, it's affordable quality video. Always. Great video, great price. No matter what you need, they should be able to fit the bill. Check them out at http://mirandumpictures.net.

As these two companies mature, I'll update you. Both have links for questions if you have any inquiries.

The Quest for my Driver's License (Part 3)


As my first two attempts to gain a license had failed, I felt an almost moral obligation to succeed on Friday. I knew that, if I failed, I wouldn’t get a chance to take the test again until August, as I would be in Front Royal, and then Ireland, for most of the summer. I had to pass, or else my traveling to class would be a challenge, to say the least.

All of this weighed heavily on my mind as I stood in line, for a third time, waiting for my turn to take the test. Once again, I was in my sister’s car, the one I had failed in the day before. Once again, the car passed the initial, physical examination. My tester this time was a rather scripted guy, who made sure he read exactly what he needed to, so that I knew all the rules.

We got the parallel parking part. I was really careful this time.

And I passed it. I was a little far away from the curb at first, but I pulled it closer, and it was fine.


We moved on a little bit further, and he announced my need to make a 2-way reverse parking, which is basically when you back into a parking space. I started backing up, but realized I needed more room (I was almost on top of a flag), so I pulled forward a little. I knew, in the back of my head, that it would cost me a point, but I knew I had to do it. One point off is always better than failing. And it worked, anyway, and I parked the car successfully, with that little extra room.

From there, the test was easy. It was a road section, which basically consisted in driving around near the MVA. After we passed a speed limit sign, he asked which sign we passed. That kind of stuff. Needless to say, that was the stuff I was EXCELLENT at, so I passed that part. And then we came back around, he congratulated me (he almost wrote the date and my score in the fail column thought. Haha). I went inside, and after some waiting, I was a newly licensed driver.

Awesome news, since apparently I was one of the few people who passed that day.

And that is the story of the Quest for my Driver’s License. It was an adventure, and I’m finished with it. Looking at my license, noting the floating head picture in the bottom-left corner, I can’t help but feel relieved. I don’t have to worry about paying $50 to renew the learners. I don’t have to keep track of my practice hours. I can just drive. Like a cowboy or something, except in a car, instead of on a horse.

It feels wonderful.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

The Quest for my Driver's License (Part 2)


My dad set up another appointment for me to take the test on Thursday. The problem was, in which car should I take the test? Should I take it in the family van? No, it was decided, because that might fail the initial inspection. Should I take it in the Dodge, the car I would inherit? Again, no, for the same reason. What then? My sister’s car? The one I had driven once, and that was in the my church’s parking lot?


That meant it was time for a crash course (pun intended) in driving my sister’s car. So my dad and I headed over to the driving school’s parking lot near my house. We worked for an hour or so on parking, parallel or otherwise, and generally driving around, so I could get a feel for the car. I succeeded the parallel parking, and I felt that I was ready for the test. The only thing I was worried about was bumping the curb, which wouldn’t fail me, but if I did it 3 times I would fail.

Then there was the warning signal.

My sister’s car is a newer car, and as such, it provides a warning every, I want to say every 3,000 miles or so, saying it is time for “regular service.” Now this light goes off after you start driving, so that wasn’t a problem. The problem was there was another warning signal, saying that one of the lights was out. More annoying was that it flashed on and off, repeating the need for “regular service.” If the MVA tester had failed the other car for the headlight cover, this car would definitely fail for the flashing warning lights. So we checked around the car, and found a small license plate light was out. We replaced the bulb. Did that fix the problem?



Well, it turns out that one of the taillights was loose, and that’s why the message kept flashing. We thought we had tightened it, but on Thursday, on the way to the MVA, the message started flashing AGAIN! We pulled into a gas station, and sure enough, the bulb had bumped out of place again. We got it back in the spot, and all the warnings went off. HOORAY! With renewed confidence we went to the MVA.

Once again I waited in line, once again I filled out a form for my information, once again I sat in the car waiting for the tester. Fortunately, my sister’s car passed the initial physical inspection. From here on out, any problems that occur during the test were my fault. I was excited. I had never gotten this far before. I was cheerful, even if the tester wasn’t too comforting. Pull up, the rather stiff tester said, and I did, stopping at the stop-line. Here’s where you’re going to parallel park.

Right, I thought. Parallel parking. I can do this. I said so, smiling.

I proceeded to start the parking. For those of you who don’t know how to parallel park (I hope you all do. Sheesh!), you first pull up beyond the spot where you would like to park, then back in, turning the wheel. . . Ok, its kinda hard to describe, so just take my word on it. So I started the parking, backing, backing, backing.

Ok, stop, the tester said. Put the car in park, and step outside the car.

Crap in a bucket, I thought. I looked behind me, and then got out.

I had knocked one of the flags, marking the end of the parking space.

Automatic failure.

After the guy fixed the flag, he got in the driver’s seat (failed test takers are not allowed to return the car to their parents) and we drove back to my dad. He explained to me, on the way back, all one minute it took, not to knock over the flags, and that it shouldn’t be that hard to park this car, because he could park delivery trucks, no problem, and I needed to get a better handle of the car before trying again.

And then we got out, he explained it to my dad, and we returned to the main parking lot. As mentioned earlier, if you fail once, you can set up another appointment for the next day. We did that, and we headed home to practice parking some more.

I could not figure out what I did wrong that day. I tried different ways of parking, trying to do what I had done before, but I couldn’t figure out how I knocked over the flag. Did I back up too fast? Maybe. I don’t know, and I still don’t exactly know. I practiced with my dad for over an hour, though, parking and parking and parking.

Tomorrow, I thought. Tomorrow I’m gonna pass.

Friday, June 25, 2010

New Template

So I want a new template. I feel that the same, bland orange has been a part of this blog for too long.

But I don't like any of the templates provided by Blogger.

How do I make a template I want, with cool stuff, etc?

Any help helps.

Monday, June 21, 2010

The Quest for my Driver's License (Part 1)

After long last (by long, I mean like 5 years), I have earned my Driver’s License. It was a process that began back before I started at the College and just ended. . . 3 days ago. I am quite relieved and excited by this little card, which has a rather attractive picture of my disembodied head floating on it.

But the process was long not only in the macro sense (the 5 years), but also in the micro sense (last week). For the driving test I took which earned me this license was not my first attempt to gain the license. Oh no. This was attempt number THREE in as many days. The story of the macro sense is boring (it just took a while for me to get all 60 hours of in car required for the license). The micro one is heartbreaking.

Let’s start on Tuesday.


I had an appointment for the driving test on Tuesday. That’s right, appointment. Maryland requires you to set up an appointment for your driving test (which is a good idea, since some people in other states, like Virginia, do not have such appointments, and some people just show up and don’t get to take their tests. Sad face). So I went to the MVA (aka, the DMV) to take the test. I was going to take the test in my mom’s Volvo, a jerky car that I had some experience driving (I was more used to driving the family’s van, but never you mind). I stood in line, filled out the paperwork, and was told to pull around to the side to begin the test. We did (my mom and younger sister were with me), and we sat, waiting for the tester to come. She arrived and immediately started conversing with my mom about the Volvo, which is similar to hers. Then she started the external examination of the car. I turned on the wipers, I turned on my lights, showed off my knowledge of turn signals and hazard lights, etc. As she was walking around the car, she paused. She looked over at my mom, and made a comment. My mom came over to talk to her.

They were talking about the headlights.

Now, you must understand this about the headlights on my mom’s Volvo. The headlights themselves work great. Superb. There is nothing wrong with them, save for the fact, which this tester properly noticed, that the cover is missing from one of the headlights. It’s just a bulb, shining forth in the night. Kinda poetic, actually. What makes it more poetic is that its not an easily fixable problem. But it works, so why bother. Plus, my brother had taken his driving test in the Volvo, and he had passed, once the issue was explained to the tester that he had.

Well, it didn’t work for this tester. The car was disqualified because of the light. But don’t worry, she said. This won’t go down as a failure, on your part. Just that your car was disqualified. You can come back, heck, later today, if you can get a different car. And with that, we left, attempt MVA – 1; Ibid – 0.

It was a good thing Tuesday’s events didn’t count as a failure. When you fail a driving test, you can retake the test the next day. If you fail again, you can’t take the test for a week.

It was a good thing I didn’t fail, because I needed the extra testing day after Thursday’s debacle.

Monday, June 14, 2010

an interesting article

This is something I noticed a while ago. This article sums up the discussion nicely. No comments here, just a quote, to get you interested:

"The drive for same sex marriage will marginalize men from the family, and lead to the belief that the only good man is a gay man."

A major problem. One that needs to be addressed NOW, not 20 years from now, when strange science-fiction movies start coming true.