I Am Bismark


i’m afraid i can’t do that dave

my vacation is almost over. i didn’t get nearly as much done as i wanted to, but i certainly got in a lot of relaxing! friday i went out shopping. i needed to really because i had run out of shampoo, but i figured i might as well stop in to some stores to see if there was anything worthwhile on sale. yeah, there really wasn’t. mall clothes really bore me. i did pick up two just basic sweater for cheap from the gap though just because i figure i can always use basic sweaters.

oh, and for those who are not in the know, operation levis has been aborted. the 501s just werent me i decided, though i tried for quite a long time. so i did go in search of a new pair of jeans, but everyone failed me again. i ended up snagging a pair of diesels for really cheap online at this site.

as far as shampoo, i’ve decided to give the american crew citrus mint line a try. i’ve become a bit tired of the nancy boy scent, and i read some good reviews on my shaving sites, so i picked some up while at the mall. so far, i really like it.

friday night my friend jessica invited me to go see comedy sportz. its been a few years since i’ve gone, so it was fun to go again. i laughed a good bit, though as is usual with improv, some of it fell flat. i remember the first time i went to the one in madison with my high school girlfriend… ah memories. saturday i did get a bit of my homework done so that was good. i then realized that the gift certificate to tucanos that my mom had sent me expired at the end of the month, so i quickly called up mariam to enjoy my birthday dinner with. it was her first time, and we had fun. i think she out ate me to be honest… i just can’t eat like a 24 year old anymore. and of course she had to mention that we were there for my birthday, so i got the whole song and dance.


this is me standing outside of tucanos next to one of the trees. i am holding my birthday ice cream.


mariam most likely complaining about the lack of snow. after waddling back to the car, we went to her house to watch 2001: a space odyssey. she had never seen it and we decided to watch it since she claimed that she never falls asleep during movies and i bet her i could find a movie that would put her to sleep. surprisingly we both made it through the entire thing, stomachs full of meat and all. i still had no idea what the end was supposed to mean though….

going to study in the periodicals section… if you know what I mean..

watching comedy sportz. they are decent tonight.

really craving an egg nog milkshake. undying love for any woman who brings me on.

gratitude - #3

well, this has become kind of an annual tradition for me. its always good to take some time to be grateful, especially when my life has taken a slight turn for the worse in recent weeks. but really, i have so little in my life that isn’t wonderful and great. so without further ado, here is my list of things i am grateful for:

  • sappy blogs.
  • senior year.
  • internships.
  • california adventures.
  • owning a car.
  • reconnecting with friends.
  • extended family.
  • immediate family.
  • graduate schools.
  • the end of the elections.
  • being single again.
  • flirting.
  • kissing.
  • spending money on girls.
  • God.
  • the temple.
  • trees.
  • my iphone.
  • sweaters.
  • being a menace to society.
  • four year old crushes.
  • little debbie snacks.
  • discovering vietnamese food.
  • good mashed potatoes.
  • “beautiful” red hair.
  • operating systems.
  • snow shoeing.
  • large dogs.
  • weird roommates.
  • indy films.
  • learning about myself.
  • fried oreos.
  • winning raffles.
  • mentors.
  • japanese.
  • lack of sleep.
  • dark haired women.
  • moms.
  • rice pudding.
  • english shaving cream.
  • diet cola.
  • board games.
  • newly found arts and craft skills.
  • t-rex’s wisdom.
  • cheaper gas.
  • new dreams.
  • new goals.
  • new unknowns.
  • the continued search for true love.
  • life.

filling out grad school applications… this is not going to be cheap.

seeing the new bond movie with the little bro and kenji.

modeling, potlucks, scarves, and board games

ive had a pretty busy past couple of days.

saturday night my roommate austin and i started a game of axis and allies. so far we have played for almost 6 hours, and the game has yet to end. he is about to beat me though. the japanese have been completely wiped off of mainland asia, so even though they have complete control of the pacific, they have no sources of income. and now both the united kingdom and the united states are defending the russian border, so despite how many tanks germany throws at it, no good has come of it.. sigh. i think we will try finishing later today.

sunday morning michelle came over, flat ironed my hair, dressed me, and took me out to take some photos. it was awkward and i didn’t know how to handle the whole thing. i think michelle did a pretty good job despite the goofiness of her subject. here is a sample:

ryan modelling

you can check out her blog for more with a few goofy ones thrown in for good measure… some of her other work is really good, so you should check it out!

after church on sunday, amanda invited me over to her house for a potluck. i brought little debbie snacks that i had arranged nicely on a plate. it was weird how many people i already knew there and also how many people had connections with japan. it was a lot of fun though, and i met some really interesting people (it was kind of the more artsy fartsy crowd). i think i will go again next week. maybe with some monkey bread?!!

yesterday was spent almost entirely in the lab working on space invaders. our game is coming along nicely, but we still have some obnoxious bugs that i have no idea how to fix. i think i need to completely re-write my bullet collision code. sigh.

despite that busyness, i did find a chance to do my daily good turn. mariam texted me she that she had forgotten her scarf at the bus stop on her way to work, so i decided to run over there and pick it up for her. i dropped it off last night after fhe, and she was quite grateful. i enjoy being a nice guy.

ATTENTION LADIES: now accepting applications for team ryan. after 10 hours in the lab, he becomes the undead (much better than a vampire!).

up waaaaaay too late playing axis and allies. so addicting.

fun afternoon, disappointing evening

i decided i wanted to start getting out and doing some more fun things (which i have been severely lacking this semester), so i invited a bunch of friends to go rock climbing at the climbing gym today. its been over a year since i’ve been climbing, so i knew i was in for quite a shock. i only went up four times, doing a 5.5, a 5.6, a 5.7, and then back down to a 5.5. my forearms ache pretty bad, and im sure they will even more in the morning. but it was a ton of fun nevertheless! here are pics!!

rock climbing 25

me super excited to kick some serious rock booty!

rock climbing 23

contemplating the task before me in the slightly awkward harness.

rock climbing 22

my friend bj having a dandy time.

rock climbing 21

andrew, krista, and mariam definitely not psyched up enough yet.

rock climbing 20

me losing my concentration and acting like a little japanese girl.

rock climbing 18

my picture captioning skills fail me.

rock climbing 19

to the left is will. he is much better than all of us at climbing which makes everything very fun for him at all of our expenses.

rock climbing 17

jessica is loving belaying so much its like a dream to her.

rock climbing 16

his dreaming partner below.

rock climbing 15

a very manly fashion.

rock climbing 14

here is mariam enjoying a rest in a very non-manly fashion.

rock climbing 13

this picture gives me diabetes.

rock climbing 12

the happy couple enjoying time together while one of them holds a humans life in her hands.

rock climbing 11

will mocking us all some more.

rock climbing 10

one of the many natural rock formations we used as grips.

rock climbing 9

mariam laughing her way to the top.

rock climbing 8

kyle and jessica wondering how they got these strange ropes tied around themselves.

rock climbing 7

me being so excited that krista made it to the top that i forgot to hold on.

rock climbing 6

krista holding on for dear life.

rock climbing 5

i actually do know how to belay….

rock climbing 4

mariam’s grip of death. but it was ok since we had more time to climb with one less person.

rock climbing 3

me climbing the wall in an even manlier fashion.

rock climbing 2

a natural rock formation shaped like an upside down Buddha’s belly. i rubbed it for good luck.

rock climbing 1

the survivors, quivering forearms and all.

after climbing we stopped by cafe rio, then mariam invited me over to her place to watch the holy war. i think the title of this post is all i need to say about that.

gosh my arms are sore.

hey jealousy


my friend tolliandrus apparently got a puppy. its got some crazy elf ears but i am jealous beyond belief. i really can’t think of anything that would make my life more complete.. sigh.

“We’re all in this together! And it shows when we stand hand in hand, Make our dreams come true!!”

quote of the day: 2008.11.19

“[Ryan,] you seem to be in a very good mood :) … I’m actually quite happy to see you so happy.”

so over writing papers for this class. gosh i can’t wait to be done with general ed classes…

did someone seriously write a letter to the editor about people being irreverent while tunnel singing? ah, thats the old byu that i love…

survived the interviews, didn’t do horribly. i expect to hear back within the week. now in the airport going back to real life.

nervous about the interview tomorrow morning. like a lamb going to the slaughter….

seattle adventure!

as i said i would be in my last blog post, i am currently in seattle. well, bellevue to be exact. i’m staying in the courtyard marriott hotel and i have a nice king size bed. its amazing what being able to stretch my legs out completely does for me sleep…

anyway, i left provo yesterday morning at the not so bright and early time of 6 am to catch my 8:20 flight. the plane was pretty close to being empty so i enjoyed an exit row seat and a nap. there were some really beautiful views of the mountains as we were flying in to seatac. amazing snow capped peaks.. much nicer than the brown blobs i see everyday in provo. to my surprise it was actually a bright and sunny day. i picked up my rental car (a hyundai santa fe… ugh i am not a fan of “suv” like cars..) and took to 405 up to bellevue. this taking a trip on a company’s dime thing is pretty nice. the room is nice and i can charge any room service or meals to the room and not have to worry it. not bad, not bad.

i relaxed in my room for a bit and then decided to head into downtown seattle. i called up bridgette and we decided we would meet at the seattle center (the place with the space needle!). its a pretty cool complex of theaters, an amusements parks, museums, etc.

seattle 4

this is the international fountain with the space needle in the back ground. a bunch of people were out cuz it was such a beautiful day. the water came out of the fountain synchronized with music, so all the children would try to run up and touch the fountain at the right time and not get wet. it was pretty fun to watch while i waited for bridgette to show up.

seattle 3

this was one of the many street performers there at the seattle center. he is currently juggling knives while straddling a young man from the audience. i also say an andean band playing. it reminded me of my time as a missionary in kiryu and meeting the guy at the train station who carved my companion and i andean flutes and taught us to play. i ought to dig that thing out when i go back to wisconsin for christmas.

i really wanted to go see the science fiction museuem/experience music project (i figured any self-respecting geek should), but by the time bridgette got there i was starving so we decided we should eat first. instead of just eating at a lame food court there, we headed off towards pike place, the big market near downtown. we had a nice walk and talk along the waterfront, and pike place was really cool. just a ton of interesting looks shops of all variety, with multiple stories and back alleys and such. definitely somewhere i would enjoy exploring more fully. but at the time my stomach was the most pressing concern, so we found a little shop in one alley claiming to have the world’s best clam chowder. it was pretty good stuff and it made me feel quite a bit better about life.

pike place was packed, so we decided to head back towards the seattle center. sadly by the time we got there, the experience music project and science fiction museum were both about to close so we didn’t go in. i don’t think i can ever forgive myself. it was quickly becoming dusk, so we decided to head up the space needle. right when we got to the top the sun was getting close to going behind the olympic mountains and was extremely beautiful.

seattle 2

this is my attempt to capture both seattle and mt. rainier in the background on my crappy iphone camera. i think bridgette got a few nicer ones with her camera, but i am still waiting on those.

seattle 1

and then the dusk skyline of seattle.

that evening after doing some relaxing and getting ready, bridgette and i headed out on the town. i was kind of tired (having been awake since 4 am), but we found a music club that bridgette had heard was good from some friends. the music was kind of eh, but we still had a fun time and made the most of it. since i was tired i ended up getting back to my hotel room at around midnight.

today i went back into the city for church at the university of washington’s institute building. it was actually pretty nice i thought. the sacrament meeting program was being put on by the institute choir (bridgette sang in it) and listening to the singing actually gave me some much needed pondering time. i came to a few important conclusions that maybe i will share on here someday.

after church, i came back to the hotel room and started studying how to interview with microsoft…. ugh, i am nervous. i basically know all of what to expect, what kind of questions i will be asked, etc, but its still freaking nerve wracking. i will have 4 hour long interviews, two in the morning and two in the afternoon with lunch in between. i am trying to stay positive and confident. i figure if i don’t do great this time, this is just great practice for helping me get ready for other interviews. there really isn’t much i can do at this point, so i am just trying to go with the flow.

anyway, thats whats going on up till now in my seattle adventure. obviously by tomorrow night i will know how the interviews have gone, so i will write a bit about that. i think i will also go to FHE with bridgette just so i am not sitting in my hotel room fretting about how the interviews went :). wish me luck!

hitting up the singles ward at the uni. of wa institute.

heading out with Bridgette to enjoy some Seattle night life.

on top of the space needle. came at just the right time to catch the sunset and the night skyline. mt. ranier was really pretty too.

just landed in Seattle. some very pretty views from the plane. I think I will like it here.

“living just to find emotion”

i had a fun evening! i guess i can’t say that i have done that on a friday in a long long time. i’m glad i finally could again.

divine comedy 6

yes, it was all sold out!

little bro was kind enough to pick me up a ticket to divine comedy for this evening. he got two for himself, but after not finding a date (hang in there bro!) he gave me the extra. so i invited my friend kristy to come down from salt lake city to enjoy it with us! i’m glad she did, cuz i enjoyed hanging out with her again.

divine comedy 7

long lines…

divine comedy 4

kristy and adam!

divine comedy 5

adam being a goof

the show was pretty good. i miss some of the old days, and the remake of the “every sunday school lesson ever given” skit was certainly not as good as the original, but i still laughed it up. also, people just don’t have as much fun between skits. i always stood up, danced, and waved around my glow sticks, but i was basically the only one to do it tonight. eh, it was still awesome.

divine comedy 3

daily unifarce headlines!

divine comedy 1

my old roommate on stage for a skit

i found out my old roommate jeremy is now a member of the troupe. that made me laugh and also remember some fun summer evenings of sitting up and talking about just about anything until 2 in the morning. the best part was his video montage with “don’t stop believing” as the music. soundtrack of summer ‘07. classic.

divine comedy 2

me living it up and freaking out kristy

after the show, we drove up to little bro’s house to pick up my much belated birthday gift (i FINALLY got the best of cat stevens cd! yay!). sadly we all forgot about the basketball game ended, but that was ok because kristy and i got to chat it up and sing along to cat stevens. it was a happy evening for me.

i am going to seattle tomorrow. i am pretty nervous about the whole interview thing. we shall see! amidst all of the crap lately, i totally spaced the fact that my friend bridgette moved to seattle a little while ago, so we are going to hang out! after my dinner on saturday night with a byu alumnus, she said she could go out and see the city. partay time. it will be nice to have a friend there to enjoy things with.

anyway, time to keep packing. i will do my best to take lots of pics and write about how the whole adventure goes!

digging out the sweaters and cologne. tshirts and hoodies everyday is not a luxury a single guy can afford :P.

worn out. heading home to see if relaxing a bit won’t fix my insomnia so I can be refreshed and able to finish my project.

sundry happenings

i was really tired today. i didn’t get to sleep until 3 am or so. a mixture of huge projects and various other external circumstances i suppose. i slept until 7 and skipped my shower and breakfast. there was a rather large (about the size of a 50-cent piece) spider sitting on the hallway wall right outside my room. that was kind of startling to wake up to.

the worst part of the whole thing was that i didn’t even have my 7:30 am class this morning, it was just a worthless meeting with my group for a project we are starting. we talked for 15 minutes. so i went down to find a place to nap in the computer science TA lab. no one else was there, so i turned off all the lights and snuggled down on the little couch. but the really terrible thing about insomnia is that even when you are dead tired, you just can’t sleep. after an hour, another TA came in and turn on all the lights. i finally was able to slip into a short restless 20 minute nap before i had to get to work.

speaking of work, its been pretty busy lately. we have had to go through the student’s project code and put in errors. deliberately breaking is definitely not as easy at one would think. it wear you down a bit, especially 8 hours of it. anyway, thankfully we finished that all up yesterday, but today we started evaluating the student’s code for quality. this wasn’t quite as tough, but just plain tedious. once again, 8 hours worth and i was fried.

then i came over to the engineering lab to finish up a project with my partner. that went pretty quick, which was good, because it gave me a chance to run home, shower, grab some dinner, and catch the office. i am pretty much amazed at how ironic the whole jim and pam thing is.

my mom sent me a birthday gift certificate i got from tucanos, the all you can eat brazilian bbq place (don’t ask me why they sent it to wisconsin). i think this is a hint for me that i am supposed to take a date. i don’t relish the awkwardness of asking a girl on one. but the new positive, smarter ryan is going to handle it. i already have an idea of who to ask, and already i got a few ideas for double dates in the near future. i really want to go rock climbing again. that was a really fun date last time i went (despite my camera getting ripped off) and i think it could work well for me again. wish me luck, dear reader.

good morning to the 50 cent pieces sized spider on the hallway way. didnt think they would be out and about this late.

Don’t you know? Of course you don’t, Of course you don’t, The words might choke, How long is too long when you’re waiting by the phone?

music lyrics for the day

Every afternoon
I point a hammer home
You had no follow through, follow through
Better off alone

Waiting patiently
Stranded in your sea

Singing time in tune
Where the action is
Need the stars and moon, stars and moon
Wanted more than this

Waiting patiently
Stranded in your sea

Cause I’m waiting for you
And all you can do
So little to prove
Time is the test of trust
The best of us
For hours, for hours

Every afternoon
I point a hammer home
I have no time for you, time for you
Better off alone

Waiting patiently
Stranded in your sea

Cause I’m waiting for you
And all you can do
So little to prove nobody knew
Must have been you
Didn’t it prove
But someday I’ll be free
You’ll wait for me
For hours, for ours

— the get up kids

up too late. virtual memory clock replacement algorithms: not as simple as one might think especially at 2:30 am even with two red bulls.

music lyrics for the day?

Untie me, I’ve said no vows
The train is getting way too loud
I gotta leave here my girl
Get on with my lonely life

Just leave the ring on the rail
For the wheels to nullify

Until this turn in my head
I let you stay and you paid no rent
I spent twelve long months on the lam

That’s enough sitting on the fence
For the fear of breaking dams

I find a fatal flaw
In the logic of love
And go out of my head

You love a sinking stone
That’ll never elope
So get used to the lonesome
Girl, you must atone some
Don’t leave me no phone number there

It took me all of a year
To put the poison pill to your ear
But now I stand on honest ground, on honest ground

You want to fight for this love
But honey you cannot wrestle a dove
So baby it’s clear

You want to jump and dance
But you sat on your hands
And lost your only chance

Go back to your hometown
Get your feet on the ground
And stop floating around

I find a fatal flaw
In the logic of love
And go out of my head

You love a sinking stone
That’ll never elope
So get used to used to the lonesome
Girl, you must atone some
Don’t leave me no phone number there

— the shins

post election depression

thanks natalie for the video.

well, obama won. a lot of you know that i have been an on-again off-again supporter of him, but as the election drew closer, i really felt like he was the right choice. there have been things i have disagreed with him on, and i am sure there will be in the future. but i think between the choices of the two candidates, he had the best chance of reversing the terrible things that have occurred during the bush era.

on election night i went to the byu democrats party to watch the results until obama’s acceptance speech. it was all pretty fun. lots of whooping and cheering at each blue state, lots of booing and jeering at each red state. as soon as the west coast polls closed and CNN called it for obama, we all decided to run around campus doing a victory lap. it was fun running through the wilk chanting “yes we can!” and having everyone stare. then we decided to do a silent march through the library. the information commons was packed (perhaps with republicans who knew it was going to be a loss? :P) so we had quite a crowd. someone pointed me to this picture (yes, that is me).

here is what i hope to see from an obama presidency:

  • a quick and well planned end to the iraq war
  • a quick and well planned regaining of control of afghanistan as part of a coalition of allies
  • an end to any and all uses of torture as an interrogation technique
  • a push for higher environmental standards
  • a push for a rebuilding of the national infrastructure
  • an end to the bush era politics of fear mongering and war profiteering

i cheered the loudest last tuesday night when the byu democrats president announced to us all that the bush era was now over. i highly doubt obama will be able to do even a small percentage of the things he promised (which is both good and bad), but for the mere fact that the bush era has ended, i believe this is a great step forward for our country.

snow??? already nuclear fallout from the Obama presidency?

i’m hoping for a chocolate lab in the white house.

we did a silent victory lap through the library.

folks, let’s say it one last time: i’ve got a crush on obama.

drudgereport is only showing the popular vote to make it seem like the race is still close… hahahah

the internets are getting hammered tonight. this is what we get for convicting senator stevens!!!!

watching the election results with the byu democrats.

i’m calling the election for obama. that’s right folks. you heard it here first.

operation levis: the quest for the perfect pair of jeans, part 1

so, i bought some new jeans over the weekend. some back story: earlier this year i bought two pairs of seven jeans. to put it simply, they were expensive (i will leave it as an exercise for the reader to google them and guess how much i paid). this was during the heady days of my first 4 digit paychecks from intel. it still seemed like an eternity before i would return to my life of poverty, so these purchases seemed like great ideas at the time. the jeans were trendy and fit me quite well at the time of purchase.

well, it seems that these pairs of sevens were just terribly made. the first pair quickly developed a nice rip at the knee, which i got repaired for the tune of $50 (that should give you a hint as to how much i originally paid). as of friday evening, both one pair had a small hole in the knee and another right above the right back pocket. the seat of both of the pairs is so worn that when i hold them up to a light they are almost translucent. i am almost scared to wear them out in public for fear of developing a rather embarrassing rip.

so, after kicking myself for paying so much for these poor excuses of jeans, i decided it was time for a newer, better pair. i really think having comfortable well fitting pants is essential. not only does it make you look good, it makes you feel good. who wants their pants falling down or pinching them or getting caught under their shoes and tearing? comfortable jeans are essential for feeling comfortable. i wanted some perfect jeans.

i decided on a pair of levi’s 501s. the classics. the original pair of jeans designed almost 150 years ago. i grabbed a pair of 32x34s at macy’s (on sale for about 1/5 of the price of the sevens) on saturday afternoon, and thus my quest began. right now, the jeans fit pretty well. not great, but pretty well. they are still a bit tight in a few places, and they need to be hemmed up about half an inch. but thats fine. i’ve learned that the perfect pair of jeans can not be bought off of the shelf. they have to be formed by being worn.

so, to get things start, i washed my jeans earlier today with hot water and a hot dry. i wanted to shrink them as much as they were going to shrink. this is the last time they will ever enter into a washing machine and dryer. in 3-4 months (assuming nothing catastrophic occurs ), i will “wash” the jeans as described here. until then, i plan on this pair of jeans becoming my every day jeans. yes, everyday. quality clothes rarely need to be “washed”. when was they last time you “washed” one of your wool or cashmere sweaters? i trust that these 501s will be of the same quality.

my hope is that within half a year or so, these jeans will become “perfect”. they will fit and feel wonderful. the dirt that will build up over months of no washing should actually give them a very unique feel and look. i am excited to form my new pair of favorite jeans.

i will post monthly pictures and updates to let everyone know how it works.

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