Monthly Archives: September 2005

I’ve neglected my blog again. Not that anyone reads this thing.

Anyway, busy week. Apparently Columbia Basin College’s administration, in their infinite wisdom, have come to the conclusion that IT students previously were not getting enough excersise. As a remedy to this, they have stuck us in the most isolated portion of their giantic new building with *no parking access whatsoever*, while leaving the open computer lab in the W Building (which has the only available parking anywhere.)

Nice. But that’s not all folks. Last year I voted not to remodel the Hawk Union Building. The vote passed anyway. There was nothing wrong with the old HUB. Nothing at all. And so, we saddled the *next fifteen years* of students at this two year college with increased tuition to remodel it.

And I’m not impressed. Not even slightly. After all this money we’ve spent, there seems to be very little change and no actual improvement. Then again, I’m all about function, and I don’t get style or fashion, but all that having an updated HUB means is that in fifteen years, another class will vote to remodel the thing again because it’s outdated.


My class load was cut by the unexpected expedient that my fourth class was cancelled. Only three students signed up. Fortunately, I still have fifteen credits, or I would be in some serious trouble with regards to financial aid.

Now that I have money, I will get my window fixed. I think having a car can reasonably be classified as an “educational expense” when school is fifteen miles from where I live and the public transportation system is a joke. Without the window, I’ve started to notice something. People smoke in their cars. A lot of them. With the cigarette hanging out the open window and blowing smoke right back at me. Jackasses. Oh well. It’s not that bad. Nothing says “well ventilated” like a missing window at seventy miles an hour. Whee.

I have just finished reading The Salmon of Doubt: Hitchhiking the Galaxy One Last Time.

Douglas Adams was a very funny man. Reading the distilled contents of his various hard-drives, I was gripped. Unable to put it down, I frequently laughed nearly to the point of suffocation — and then I encountered the novel’s abrupt end. It was almost a synonym for the man’s tragically short life and career.

Once more, as when I first learned of his death, I was moved to tears. The world — indeed the Galaxy — lost something beyond my ability to explain, or perhaps even fully comprehend, those some four years ago. Having read the majority of his novels, and faced with the products of the incomplete career of a chronic procrastinator, I am painfully aware that there are a finite — and small — number of times I shall be able to enjoy the singular with of one Douglas Noel Adams.

Rest in Peace.

However, I wouldn’t be myself if I hadn’t found something to complain about, and here it is: it came to my attention while reading this book that Douglas was bewildered by the human tendency to build dams. He claimed, and seemed to believe, that they never did what they were intended to and caused a great deal of damage.

I don’t find that assessment to be correct. Take, for example, Washington State’s own Grand Coulee Dam —  the third largest hydroelectric facility in the world, it has served and continues to serve every purpose for which it was erected. During its construction, it fed the local and national economy, ultimately forming a critical part of this nation’s recovery from the Great Depresssion. During World War II, it provided needed power to the Pacific Northwest’s strategically vital Aluminum industry.

Today, Grand Coulee Dam produces up to 6800 megawatts of power, serves the irrigation needs of the surrounding area, and stands as a powerful testament to the ingenuity and resourcefulness of mankind. As to how destructive it is/has been — that’s a matter which is up for debate, and is being debated even now. I will not presume to venture an opinion on it, save to say that I believe the benefits have greatly outweighed the drawbacks, and that the same is true for most or all such dams along the Columbia.

Woo-hoo! Thank You Uncle Sam,. Got my financial aid check today, so I’m
good to go this quarter. Too bad the bastards (Columbia Basin College’s
Financial Aid Department) mail it on Friday so I can’t use it until after my first class on
Monday. For which I should have books. Which I haven’t been able to buy
yet. Getting it a week ago would have been really handy, all things

Well, my petty troubles are nothing compared to the devastation on the Gulf Coast. It’s at times like this I regret the fact that I no longer pray. I feel very guilty that there is nothing I can do to help.

My fuel pump turned out to be busted, thus the unexpectedly running out of fuel thing. It’s now replaced, so the car works much better now. Now if only it had a passenger-side window. One challenge at a time.

Replaced the battery just now as well. Works great now. Fingers Crossed.