Saturday, January 30, 2010

Transformers, quotes on writing, and NOT being a sheep!

Henry picked me up in a car which had received a facelift - yup, I noticed that there was something different! When we got to church, I noticed that Steven Wei was now a leader in training; cool stuff. Talked to Chris Lam about teaching / education; he loves kids, even if his courses seem very intense - seven last semester and two more completed in January alone?! Interacted with Jordan, Catherine, Golden, Chrystal, and some others: Canada Line, pencil crayons, chocolate squares, sickness, and more. Mike said that Danny sounded like a pedophile when he sang ALIVE FOREVERMORE; even Margaret told him to stop, haha!

Eric Ma, Reigan, and Eric T. led the Sparks in singing - interesting to see. Melia, Auntie Rebecca, and Chrystal asked why I was ripping pages out of my "Write it, baby!" journal - those had quotes on them! After Awana, Conor said that his last name didn't begin with a K (he was looking at a list of names) - I told him that it stood for "kindergarten," which he is in. He also said that he'd bring a motorcycle Transformer to Sunday School tomorrow; should be cool. Ian (who doesn't want to go to a sleepover) and Sean were quieter than usual, but it was still okay.

Here are a list of quotes from my "Write it, baby!" journal, which I got for only five dollars:

"The difficulty of literature is not to write, but to write what you mean; not to affect your reader, but to affect him precisely as you wish." - Robert Louis Stevenson

"Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart." - William Wordsworth

"Write down the thoughts of the moment. Those that come unsought for are commonly the most valuable." - Francis Bacon

"Writing is a way of talking without being interrupted." - Jules Renard

"If I don't write to empty my mind, I go mad." - Lord Byron

"True ease in writing comes from art, not chance. As those who move easiest have learned to dance." - Alexander Pope

"There are thousands of thoughts lying within a man that he does not know till he takes up the pen and writes." - William Makepeace Thackeray

"Looking back, I imagine I was always writing. Twaddle it was, too. But far better write twaddle or anything, anything, than nothing at all." - Katherine Mansfield

"More than kisses, letters mingle souls." - John Donne

"The words that enlighten the soul are more precious than jewels." - Hazrat Inayat Khan

"You will have written exceptionally well if, by skillful arrangement of your words, you have made an ordinary one seem original." - Horace

"Either write something worth reading, or do something worth writing." - Benjamin Franklin

"The art of writing is the art of discovering what you believe." - Gustave Flaubert

"Words are only painted fire; a book is the fire itself." - Mark Twain

"Words without thoughts never to heaven go." - William Shakespeare

"Reading makes a full man, conference a ready man, and writing an exact man." - Francis Bacon

"True glory consists in doing what deserves to be written; in writing what deserves to be read; and in so living as to make the world happier for our living in it." - Pliny the Elder

"Our admiration of fine writing will always be in proportion to its real difficulty and the apparent ease." - Charles Caleb Colton.

"I always write a good first line, but I have trouble in writing the others." - Molière

"To be a well-flavored man is the gift of fortune, but to write or read comes by nature." - William Shakespeare

You Are Not a Sheep

You don't follow the crowd. In fact, whenever it's possible, you try to avoid the crowd.

You don't like blending in, and you are a complete rebel. Being like everyone else is boring.

You are a distinct individual, and you're definitely one of a kind. People probably consider you to be quite quirky.

If anything, the herd ends up following you. And you find that to be highly annoying!

Most of this sounds right... and someone used to say that I was too different. HA. He just couldn't handle me, that's all. :D

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Easy fun death / Rocking hats / BATMAN villains

Here's a thinker from Billie: the kanji spelling of "euthanasia" in Japanese includes the Kanji for "easy," "fun," and "death." How ironic is that? (I like this because I'm MORBID! Told this to Cordia earlier tonight; she said that they have a word for "committing suicide via train," so I said that there was a Youtube video with a bunch of people seemingly doing just that! She liked the original fact, and gave it a double thumbs-up, haha!)

Eric picked me up at about the usual time, and I used the ride to say that at least I had gotten acknowledgement from Raymond when I was telling the penis story - HAH! Then he teased me about my "affections for a certain person" - as IF! I said that at least the ride over had been somewhat interesting, if he thought I was being quiet! (control, dominance, Facebook applications, shipping container Inukshuk, "fresh young meat," etc.) Once we got to church, worship was evidently finished. Talked to Eric, Dylan, Deb, Teresa, Johnny, David, Vanessa, Cindy, and Carmen about submission / God's image of marriage / broadcast radio school / needing energy to be social / introversion / Linux code / psychology / parents / marriage. It was an interesting Bible Study - I would only submit if given respect for my other strengths, of course.

After that, we went out into the hallway - Dave says that he used to "rock" my type of hats - cool. Says he's spending time with family tomorrow - also cool. I think I'll get some more Minute Rice if it's still on sale, myself. No, I didn't have an idea of whether it would rain tomorrow! (but it did when Eric and I left) He needed to buy some eggs, so wondered what time it was; when I said it was about 9:45, he was outta there, haha! Talked to Christon and Albert about the Bible Study - poked my head into the other fellowship room and briefly talked to Jessica. Mike came out and said that he thought of Albert as a real police officer more so than Citrus because he's known Citrus for AGES - I said that it was the same with how I thought of my sister!

After a while, Teresa asked if Eric could give her a ride home. Luckily, I had heard Dylan saying that he and Deb could do it while on their way to yet another social engagement, so I reminded her about it. Gave Harmony some mail for Jon (who was at a concert with Jeremy), and talked to her briefly about job interviews and such. If it's not the right one for her, at least it gave her some practice in interviewing and negotiation!

Later, Eric asked if I wanted to talk to my "lesbian lover" - HA, beat you to it! After some more talking to people, we left. In the car, he wondered why I was so negative toward Mr. Creep - you KNOW why, and he should have thought about how it would make him appear when he signed the sheet to help with community service! He thought I was that way toward Geoffrey, too - no, definitely not. Then he thought that my "OH MAN!" was a good thing once I figured that Dave said "yo / dope / represent" - dunno about that.

He informed me that I'd been quiet during Bible Study, even when Deb asked me something... um, I didn't hear that! So he said various things under his breath to test it - let's just say I got everything WRONG! Also discussed conflict, whores, Corvettes, waste, asking people out, my ex having a new job in Nanaimo because he couldn't find work in Port McNeill (I think he burned his bridges!), weekly things, Spider-Man, Facebook news feeds, and more.

Trivia fact for Saturday, Jan. 30: Which Batman villain was named Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot at birth? The Penguin.

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Friday, January 29, 2010

Dream of sliding down a pig foot / Old Cars

Had a weird dream where a bunch of friends and I had to navigate our way to the underground by going into this gigantic pig foot which looked like a broad mushroom. Jon and Harmony had no trouble, and Jeremy (as someone named Colin?!) definitely didn't because he was so skinny. I had a lot of trouble since I was easily the biggest one of the bunch, but Harmony helped me. Then we tried to figure out how to enlarge the opening, because it really WAS like sliding down a network of veins and such which shouldn't have been pulsating! Auntie Bessy came up to us with cranberry juice and tea, and said that we had to go to a study NOW - we had no time to dither about such things as engineering, basically. Too bad, because Christon then came down the opening! After going to our studies, we had to go through these hallways. Our destination was the kiddy rooms, where we had to teach the kids (including Harrison and Ethan) about blocks. Melia, Angus, and Henry joined us in our crowded trek - we talked about cutting the entrance to widen it, and we were going to do that when I woke up. What the heck?!

You Are Totally Whimsical

If you were a car, you'd be a sweet ride. You like to cruise through life in style.

When it comes to the road of life, you slow down and enjoy the scenery. You don't want anything to pass you by.

You love to drive, as long as you aren't in a hurry to go anywhere. You always prefer to take the more interesting route.

You never like it when driving is a chore. Driving should be fun, not stressful!

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Dragons / Cement mixers / Soda / Gallons of air

From Jane and Chantelle:

Please put this on your blog if you know someone (or are related to someone) who has been eaten by dragons. My wish for 2010 is that people will understand that being eaten by dragons is not something to be ashamed of. Dragons are nearly unstoppable and are truly terrifying. 93% won't copy and paste this... They have been eaten by dragons.

Put ♥ this ♥ on ♥ your ♥ blog ♥ if ♥ you ♥ know ♥ someone ♥ you ♥ hope ♥ gets ♥ run ♥ over ♥ by ♥ a ♥ big ♥ ass ♥ cement ♥ mixer

Leslie took the "What kick-ass woman from history are you?" quiz and the result is Artemisia Gentileschi. "There's nothing sadistic here! Instead, what strikes the most is the impassibility of the painter, who was even able to notice how the blood (spurting with violence) can decorate with two drops the central spurt! Incredible, I tell you!" Sometimes lauded as the most (or only!) accomplished female painter of the Renaissance, Artemisia was raped by her professor as a teenager, then tortured at her own trial to corroborate her testimony. She is remembered for her realistic, violent paintings. You are known for your vengeful need to overcome opposition, to succeed if only to spite your adversaries. You are probably passionate about your creativity, and you rely on no man for the fulfilling things in your life. You will stop at nothing to empower yourself to pursue the things you love.

Facebook quizzes taken from Emily Lee and Gretchen:

Leslie took the "What soda are you?" quiz and the result is Sprite. Sprite, the soda that is always there. People know you and like you, but you aren't always going to be their first choice. You are incredibly well-behaved and really smart, and make really good life decisions. You will be around stuff, and yet the focus isn't really always on you. Parents love you since you don't have too much caffeine or sugar. You keep people safe, and help everyone out. (I took this while drinking the remnants of my Pepsi from Dairy Queen, haha)

I just took the What Love Song Are You? quiz and the result is Parachute's She Is Love. You found your love. The one you turn to for comfort, safety, happiness. You feel as if you don't deserve them, but they are everything you could hope to find. They're the ear that listens, the shoulder to cry on, the person who holds their arms out to you. Take a chance; trust them and be happy. This person will never leave you.

Trivia fact for Friday, Jan. 29: How many gallons of air does the average adult human inhale daily? More than 3000.

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Benadryl and a Mushroom Swiss burger lunch

I went to the pharmacy to buy Benadryl (sleep!), and then had another cheap lunch before going home again from a failed trip to the townhouse. Got a Mushroom Swiss Burger with onion rings and Pepsi as takeout from the nearby Dairy Queen, heh. Now I want way too many Blizzards - maybe next time I'm at the mall food court! Managed to get the bus one time, and didn't spill or drop anything - yay!

Just fielded an email from Steph who says that she can let the Telus guy in herself since she isn't required to do anything tomorrow morning - good news, indeed. More time for editing and DOWNTIME before I have to go out tomorrow night, heh. Was going to take a mental health WEEK, but I am not so sure I need it - besides, Jen also has a conflict on Mondays. I guess even Wednesday would work as an alternate meeting date: no conflict with TV or phone dates there! It's not so close to another day where I'd HAVE to go out, too... haha, I like it.

Your True Passion is Your Family

You feel the most alive when you are with the people you love. It's really that simple.

You value having family in your life to support you, and you try to support them back as much as you can.

You are a loving and dependable person. And you don't just stop at your family or friends.

Anyone with a good heart is welcome into your circle, and you will treat them like family too.

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Your Monday conflicts are a GOOD thing! / Poison

I've had to take a shower and do laundry because of a certain reason - AIYA! Been exchanging emails with Steph today about tomorrow night; I've agreed to be at her place in the morning (sleeping over works for me) when Telus comes to install the Internet / TV hookup, because the earliest they can reschedule is her birthday! She said that she could pick me up at a Canada Line station, and figured that it would be easiest for me if they had somewhere I could wait if she gets off work later than 8.

With this in mind, I said Oakridge would be easy since the mall was open till 9 AND they had a parking lot she can use if need be. (trying to make things easier for her so she doesn't have to go all the way into Richmond) She said that maybe she should just pick me up at my place instead - more reliable in case she's late, in that she can call me if that happens. Fair enough! I'll let Eric know about it tomorrow by calling him at work, because I might not go back home only to go out again! Speaking of the Backwards Male, he just emailed the Committee to say that he had a conflict for every Monday from now till March 22. YES! I DON'T HAVE TO GO TO MY PARENTS' PLACE FOR AT LEAST THAT LONG! (at least, for JACK BAUER)

I had to reschedule my "phone date" with Auntie Ying, haha. She'd just gotten off the phone with Vania's mom, actually. Talked about Bible Study Fellowship (helps her grow), her eating as much as Uncle Peter, her busy life meeting people in Richmond three times already this week, my "good" family life, time with Grandma and my sister, Grace and noodles, Auntie Stella and Uncle John, the kids' birthday presents (I'll give the real crayons to Conor too), Jeremy and his Kelowna parents, Nathan and the UK, prayer, Sunday Dinners (Christon's salt / sugar mistake), the lesson this week (Satan tempts Jesus in the desert!), and more. She thinks I'm becoming more clear each week - she can tell that I do some preparation. Well, if you count reading stuff during Sunday's sermons as prep, then I guess so! The Cubbies room is good for the kids - lots more room to play and such! Always good talking to her!

Trivia fact for Thursday, Jan. 28: According to Greek mythology, what creature was the source of the poison that killed Odysseus? A stingray. Odysseus' son, Telegonus, while searching for his father in Ithaca, unwittingly killed him with a spear tipped with the venomous spine of a stingray.

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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

This time, JEREMY YUNG catches me out in my sweats! (Beef Triple with Noodles)

Whoops, I got caught out in my sweats again, which makes it TWICE IN A WEEK! Let's just say I wasn't expecting to see Jeremy Y. (waved and said "Hey") on his way to tutoring when I was walking to Sears! Before I went out, I did some editing to get SOMETHING done. At least I got my banking done, followed by a quick lunch of pork balls / noodles / soup / iced coffee at Excelsior Restaurant. It was much-needed, particularly since I have a bad habit of not eating until I absolutely have to! Saw Beef Triple with Noodles in Soup on the menu, heh. Of course, it's supposed to be TRIPE.

Successfully returned that tank top to the Bay, and got a refund on my debit card, which I thought was neat. Found a couple of cheap longer camisoles at Sears - only $17.50 for the pair, even if you don't have much of a selection on clearance! Went to the dollar store to get a comb (ended up with six in a pack) and four packages of gum, as well. Not too bad a time out, I guess... although I guess I need to get ready for another day without the Internet if I'm going to help my sister by staying at her place while Telus installs stuff. Downsized my number of bags when I got home, as well.

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Being up this early is ridiculous!

I know I wanted to get up earlier than 4 PM today so I could do banking and such, but being up at 9 AM when I went to bed at 3 AM is RIDICULOUS! Ugh, I just want to go back to bed.. SO TIRED!

You Are Colorful Because You Are Bold

You have a true sense of adventure, and you are always off trying something new.

You get as afraid as anyone else, but you resist that little voice in the back of your head that tells you to give up.

You are likely very goal-oriented and driven. You are willing to give everything your all, even if success is a long shot.

You like to be in the middle of the action, and you hate to miss an opportunity. You'd rather fail than not try at all.

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I used your cell phone when you tried mugging me! / Toxic cyanobacteria

Taken from a_phoenixdragon... Mandy, this is one heck of a Craigslist ad!

To the Guy Who Tried to Mug Me in Downtown Savannah night before last.
Date: 2009-05-27, 1:43 a.m. E.S.T.

I was the guy wearing the black Burberry jacket that you demanded that I hand over, shortly after you pulled the knife on me and my girlfriend, threatening our lives.. You also asked for my girlfriend's purse and earrings. I can only hope that you somehow come across this rather important message.
First, I'd like to apologize for your embarrassment; I didn't expect you to actually crap in your pants when I drew my pistol after you took my jacket. The evening was not that cold, and I was wearing the jacket for a reason. My girlfriend had just bought me that Kimber Model 1911 .45 ACP pistol for my birthday, and we had picked up a shoulder holster for it that very evening. Obviously, you agree that it is a very intimidating weapon when pointed at your head .... isn't it?!
I know it probably wasn't fun walking back to wherever you'd come from with that brown sludge in your pants. I'm sure it was even worse walking bare-footed since I made you leave your shoes, cell phone, and wallet with me. [That prevented you from calling or running to your buddies to come help mug us again]..
After I called your mother or "Momma" as you had her listed in your cell, I explained the entire episode of what you'd done. Then I went and filled up my gas tank as well as those of four other people in the gas station -- on your credit card. The guy with the big motor home took 150 gallons and was extremely grateful!
I gave your shoes to a homeless guy outside Vinnie Van Go Go's, along with all the cash in your wallet. [That made his day!]
I then threw your wallet into the big pink "pimp mobile" that was parked at the curb ... after I broke the windshield and side window and keyed the entire driver's side of the car.
Later, I called a bunch of phone sex numbers from your cell phone. Ma Bell just now shut down the line, although I only used the phone for a little over a day now, so what's going on with that? Earlier, I managed to get in two threatening phone calls to the DA's office and one to the FBI, while mentioning President Obama as my possible target.
The FBI guy seemed really intense, and we had a nice long chat (I guess while he traced your number, etc.).
In a way, perhaps I should apologize for not killing you, but I feel this type of retribution is a far more appropriate punishment for your threatened crime. I wish you well as you try to sort through some of these rather immediate pressing issues, and can only hope that you have the opportunity to reflect upon, and perhaps reconsider, the career path you've chosen to pursue in life. Remember, next time, you might not be so lucky. Have a good day!
Thoughtfully yours,

P.S. Remember this motto ... An armed society makes for a more civil society!

Trivia fact for Wednesday, Jan. 27: When it comes to blights in the great outdoors, what is toxic cyanobacteria? Pond scum, or blue-green algae.

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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Latrina, Lexine, Lolita, and Lulu

This is from What Not to Name Your Baby by Joe Borgenicht.


Laalaa: One of the four colorful Teletubbies - we're not sure which one. Name a child this, turn on daytime TV, and you'll know soon enough.

LaBerta: In French, the feminine for Bert. Or so her parents would like to think...

LaDoya: One of the original Jackson 6. After sprinkling itchy powder into her brother Michael's pants, she was quickly relegated to wardrobe consultant. She is currently employed by her sister, Janet.

Lady: Give a girl a touch of class! No need to marry a lord - this girl's a real powerhouse in her own right. Also, a popular name for female water dogs.

LaFawnduh: The answer an angry Frenchman might give when asked a silly question about the gender of a deer. Also, someone who might work as a political intern in the White House and engage in an extramarital affair.

Lakeesha: A lightly crusted egg dish that real Frenchmen don't eat.

LaPhyllis: A French female comedian known for her rapid-fire stand-up routines and outlandish hair.

Larissa: Russian diminutive of Lara. Suggests a beautiful, tiny woman with big eyes who could drive a troika in a blizzard while being chased by wolves.

Latrina: Why not just name a daughter Toilet and be done? Concerned in-laws should call child protective services now.

Launa: Spanish or Italian derivative for "The One." Also, the name of a pop hit by a second-generation Latin heartthrob.

Lawn: A light cotton fabric, often dyed in pale colors. Also, that vast expanse of green (or brown) outside your window.

Lexine: Material used to make the little envelopes that contain stamps in post office vending machines.

Lillian: Your grandmother's mahjong partner.

Loki: Norse god of mischief or trickery. Phlegm.

Lolita: Variant of Lola. Also, the subject of Vladimir Nabokov's novel of obsession. Are you ready to name your sweet baby daughter after a nymphet who first evoked the phrase "Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins" there?

Lonica: Girl of a thousand faces. Also, an off-brand supplier of office equipment.

Lovee: Though trapped on a desert island with six others, she never lost her sense of privileged superiority through the hardship!

Lucinda / Lucy / Lucia: Will steal the football away from tenderhearted, round-headed boys. May inspire the creation of a He-Man Woman Hater's club.

Lucretia (loo-KREE-sha) - The excretion of fluids caused by watching live-action remakes of classic Dr. Seuss stories.

Lulu: Variant of Louisa. Also, variation of "doozy" in old '30s movies that included the madcap heiress and the hard-boiled newspaperman as their stock characters.

Luny: An insane bird known for its less-than-graceful flight.

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Facebook notifications in spam, Nathan's emails about "Category 3," and DOWNTIME!

This thing just restarted! Had a crazy dream about old people, walking to the washroom, being underground, and flowers. Hmm... I also just found that all my recent Facebook notifications (from the past two days) have landed in my spam folder. Definitely got those 62 emails out of there and THEN into the trash, haha! Nathan sent us an email about "Category 3" Hong Kong films, and a recipe for beer-steamed clams... NICE!

Due to getting up later than I thought I would, I did not go to the bank or store today. At least this is the first day without ANY obligations / people time since the 15th! I've had to have lunch with Auntie Catherine, watch 24, go to Fellowship / Awana / church / a Sunday Dinner / a Women's Group session, and get some grocery shopping done. I think I may still take a mental health week from Sunday onwards because two whole days at home isn't enough, but we'll see. I'll be "daring" and have my West Coast stirfry veggie tray on the day it expires, and add some Minute Rice to that. Should be fine for dinner, haha.

Your Name is Grandma Selma

Eh? Speak up!

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Abishag Lettuce should not be a name! / Teams with bird names

Here's an INSIGHT FOR LIVING magazine article by Phil Callaway that my dad passed around at the dinner table. You can ignore the last two religious paragraphs if you want, since that's what I did.

One of the finest perks of being an author is the chance to meet children who look up at you with wide eyes, and ask you to sign the book Green Eggs and Ham. And when they ask you to sign one of your own books, this is even nicer.

During the last few years, it has become increasingly problematic for me to inscribe children's names correctly. One little girl asked me to do so, and told me her name: Kertsibelle. Or at least that's what I thought she said. I asked her to spell it. She said, "P-m-r-c-h-i-e-r-t-z-i-b-e-l-l-e." Or something like that. I can't quite remember. She spelled it quickly, too. I think she'd had practice.

Now, I'm old enough to remember the days when there were approximately six options for names. Parents chose from a short list of single-syllable monikers that had been approved by the Federal Name Police, an organization founded because folk singers were experimenting with banned substances and naming their children Star, Jasmine, and Whoops.

In those days, available names included: Don, John, Tom, Bob, and Phil. If your child was a girl, a slight variation would suffice: Dawn, Jen, Tammy, Barb, or Phyllis. Not anymore. Today, parents are making up names in the delivery room. "Hi, my name is Dawn, and this is my daughter HAAAAALP!"

Each of the following is a registered name. I kid you not: Abishag Lettuce, Peaches Honeyblossom, and Frou-frou. In Britain, there are children named Reebok, Adidas, and Superman. Worldwide, there are six Gandalphs, 39 Gazzas, 36 Arsenals, and almost 2,000 boys named Tiger.

American federal census records indicate that parents have recently bestowed the following names on their children: Fanny Pack, Post Office, Warren Peace, Nice Carr, Garage Empty, King Arthur, Helen Troy, Candy Stohr, Mary Christmas, Rasp Berry, Happy Day, Ima Pigg, Ima Muskrat, and Ima Nut. And those are the ones fit for print.

And the names we thought Bart Simpson was making up for prank calls? The infamous Al Caholic, Anita Bath, and Amanda Hugginkiss? They are on the list, too.

In our town, there's a dog named Viggo. I met him and his owner one night when I was walking my dog Mojo. The dogs liked each other immediately and engaged in dog-type behaviour while Viggo's owner and I talked. "I named the dog after the movie star Viggo Mortenson," she told me. I wonder what Viggo would think of having a wiener dog with his namesake.

Though the dogs won't be suing us anytime soon, the children are. A growing list of lawsuits launched against parents cite something called "name abuse." Recently, a Swedish couple was fined $746 for naming their son Brfxxxcccxxmnnpcccclllmmnprxxvvclmnckssqlbb11116. I wish I were making this up.

Here are a few suggestions on naming children:

* Avoid names that will draw curious crowds and media exposure, spawn websites, or cause ripples of laughter in classrooms and gymnasiums
* Avoid names your child will have to spell for everyone she meets
* Picture yourself standing on the front steps at night yelling the name. How will "Please Cope," or "Justin Case" (both real names) sound? Will neighbours call the police on you?

Far more important than the names we give our children is the reputation they will carry with them through life. They will need to build that reputation themselves, of course, but we can help them get started down the right road. We can do that this year by choosing daily to spend time in God's Word, live with integrity, and respond to life's trials with joy.

Proverbs 22:1 tells us that a good name is to be chosen over great riches, that "being held in high esteem is better than gold." When people hear your name, it may not matter how many times you have to spell it. But it will matter very much what your name brings to mind.

Trivia fact for Tuesday, Jan. 26: What U.S. city has three professional sports teams with bird names? Atlanta, Georgia. Its teams are the Hawks (basketball), the Thrashers (hockey), and the Falcons (football) - the thrasher is the state bird.

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Monday, January 25, 2010

Cashews, macadamia nuts, killings, and warehouses

As soon as I got in the townhouse, my mom wanted me to call Eric - IT IS FINE BECAUSE I KNOW HE GOT THE NOTIFICATION! Escaped upstairs to say hi to Grandma, who was watching TV. Made Steph sign several cards - her Chinese New Year wish for Grandma was "may you find contentment beyond the safety deposit box!" Hahaha! Signing cards was one of the only reasons I went out, as well as to see Eric again. I also picked up a Doctors Without Borders envelope for Jon - I only trust myself, haha. Eric came over soon afterwards for a curry / chicken / beef dinner, of course. At least the Canucks won 3-2 against the Sabres!

I said I'd spend time with Grandma on Thursday afternoon ONLY! Steph wants to spend time with them tomorrow after some Langley math test! Eric consumed Starbucks cashews, Chinese grapefruit, and macadamia nuts during his time with us - Steph had to take me home on HER way home! Never again, I swear... we'll see. Apparently, Vivian and Gabriel got engaged this past weekend - terrific.

On the show, "Kamistan" is our fictitious country du jour, joining Sangala and the unnamed Islamic country from season 2. Some military guy in Kamistan is talking to baby bro, and they're talking about some general who was arrested. I wasn't paying attention because, let's face it, it was boring. If it turns out to be important, I'm sure the writers will bring it up again. Anyway, they're convinced that the uranium will solve their problems. I mean, it's done wonders for Iran and North Korea. Meanwhile, Sergei is in the back room, comforting his dying son. Sark wants to take him to a doctor, but Sergei won't sacrifice the mission. Sark lectures him, and flashes the puppy dog eyes. Who says villains don't have a soul? Sergei finally lets Sark take him to some safe house so that he'll die in comfort.

Baby bro tells Sergei that they're sending the money. Sergei won't give up the rods until then. In the meantime, baby bro is going to get his rod taken care of, as Sergei offers him his choice of two women. Baby bro, unwilling to offend either one, takes them both. What a chivalrous man! (this part reminded me, Eric, and Steph of Stephen Ng's talk on Friday) Renee and Jack stop Ziya's bleeding. Jack threatens to call Bubba and end the mission, but Renee says she did the right thing. You see, that's what he would have done to her. Man, the Russian mob is messed up. They have a heart-to-heart, and Jack decides not to make the call. He's not convinced she's fit, but she's the only chance they have. That's right, our nation's fate is in the hands of an unstable former FBI agent. Albeit an extremely cute one.

Renee's warped logic continues to manifest itself as she tells Ziya that she did him a favor in cutting off his thumb. Ziya isn't buying it, though, and Renee turns to her trump card. She'll give him an extra point on top of his cut, which winds up being about three million. That's enough for him to forget about his thumb, and he's willing to take her to Vladimir. Dana gets a call from Kevin, and he doesn't care about the pending national crisis. He wants her to come home, and wants her to do it now. Kevin then helpfully reveals that she's an ex-con who was an accessory to murder, so we finally know what he has over her. And I thought it was just his glowing personality. Dana goes to Arlo to cover for her, and he hits on her as well. Man, it pains me to say it, but it really does look like Freddie Prinze Jr. is the best out of her three prospects. Unless she decides to hook up with Jack, of course.

President Taylor just finished speaking to various heads of state to make sure they were still arriving in New York. Because it's a good idea to bring more important people to the U.S., especially with a looming national security crisis. Chief of Staff Weiss tells the President about baby bro's gameplan, and that Hassan seems to have imposed martial law. Taylor is upset at it, because her way of dealing with things is to sit around a fire and sing Kumbaya. She wants a face-to-face with Hassan after he gets back to the UN from CTU. Weiss tells her it should be 10 minutes or so. Renee and Ziya are in the car. He alludes to some past problems between Renee and Vladimir, and Ziya's tone is somewhat sleazy. Jack suddenly looks concerned, and wants Chloe to snoop into Renee's file. Based on Ziya's tone, I'm assuming it's something sexual, but who knows? Maybe Vlad ate all of Renee's borscht or something.

Hassan defies the laws of midtown traffic, and gets to the UN in four minutes. Hassan and Taylor have a debate over democracy and martial law. Blah blah blah. Hassan wants to yield a firm hand, but Taylor is outraged. What about human rights? What about Miranda laws? What about putting them up in the Waldorf Astoria until they learn the errors of their ways? Hassan has had enough and wants to see his family – even his wife is better than dealing with this. His wife asks him if he loved Meredith, even if he tells her that it's over. Sark and his brother reminisce in the car, and Sark decides to defy orders and take his brother to a doctor. He sheds his escort, and then starts driving towards the doctor's office. You know, the one that specializes in treating Russian terrorists who are trying to avoid the authorities.

Renee and Ziya pull up to some warehouse, and Ziya agrees to go in first. Have you ever noticed that bad guys are almost always holed up in some warehouse? Maybe CTU should just raid all of them? Anyway, Jack wants to know about what Vladimir did, but Renee won't say. She wants to go over the cover story instead, and Jack has to comply. Haven't seen anyone get over on Jack this consistently since Nina. Vlad is not happy to see Ziya, and punches him in the face. Or maybe he's Klingon and that's just how they greet each other. Guess not, as Vlad puts a gun to Ziya's head, and Ziya frantically tells him what's going on. Poor guy. First, he loses his thumb and now this. Vlad seems to have a blind spot for Renee, as he's convinced that Renee wasn't the one who sold them out. His henchman Lugo is not so sure, though.

Cole is looking for Dana, and Arlo tells him that she went home. Dana is already back at her apartment (knocking at the door since she gave Kevin her keys), and Kevin introduces her to Dick. No, that wasn't a euphemism or a double-entendre. He really does have a friend named Dick, who's lounging on the couch. Dana tries to pay him off with $500, but he isn't having it. We get more talk about their past as, apparently, Dana cut a deal since she was a juvenile, but Kevin went to prison. Kevin throws her up against a wall and slaps her, while Dick just continues watching football on TV. I'm guessing he's watching old USFL footage, as I'm sure the producers are trying to save money. Go, NY / NJ Generals! Kevin wants Dana to use her CTU access to get them bank records and stuff. He says that if she does this one thing, then he'll never bother her again, and I'm sure we can trust him on that.

Chloe tells Jack that Vlad became obsessed with Renee, and was abusive to her. Cracked ribs, broken jaw, etc. Jack asked if she had been raped, but Chloe isn't sure. Man, what's with all the abusive boyfriends this year? Were there complaints about the show being too misogynistic or something? Vlad quizzes Renee about her cover, and Jack feeds her the answers. Where was he when I needed him during Calculus? Even Vlad picks up on the fact that she looks like hell, and he wants to know what's up. Finally, he stumps Renee on who was in charge of the hotel she was staying at, and Chloe takes her time looking up the answer. Just look it up on Wikipedia or something, Chloe. They finally get a name, and Renee asks if she's done playing 20 Questions.

Vlad says that Renee's answer is correct, but orders her and Ziya tied up anyway. Man, this game sucks. They both get locked into the trunk of a car, and Jack loses his signal. Jack is following the car, and I have a feeling that Renee's not in that car. Sark drags his brother into a doctor's office, and emphasizes the need for strict confidentiality. In other words, he pulls a gun on the doctor, and tells him he knows where he lives. Sark then tells the doctor that his brother was exposed to weapons grade uranium. Well, now we know how CTU is eventually going to find out about the plot.

We finally see Bubba, and he authorizes Jack to intercept the car. Jack realizes he's following a decoy, and he frantically tries to get to Renee in time. Vlad has his henchman take Renee and Ziya towards the water. Vlad kills Ziya for whining, and that probably qualifies for "Worst Hour Ever." Vlad then deliberates killing Renee, and points the gun at her. She closes her eyes and tells him to do it. Vlad wants to know who she really is, and Renee gives a heartfelt speech about how she's sick of living like this, and that she has nowhere to go and no one to go to. Jack is listening in, and starts to get misty-eyed. So am I, actually. I'll take you, Renee. Craziness and all! Anyway, Vlad won't do it, and she's in like Flynn. Jack is at a loss for words, as he tells the teams to stand down. He looks a little shaken as he informs Bubba that Renee's successfully re-established her cover.

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Camisoles and the bank prove disappointing - at least I saw Lily and Hannah!

So I decided to go out today to buy a few little things while I did some banking - lip balm, greeting cards, a shampoo and conditioner set, and laundry detergent. I planned to get them at Shoppers Drug Mart, and then maybe buy a couple of undershirts at the Bay because it would be more convenient without having to go all the way across the mall to Sears. (why can't Richmond Centre be like Oakridge where Zellers and the Bay are like right next to each other?!) Went to the bank, but was told that I couldn't cash my cheque without photo ID, which does make sense, but still. I thought of the ATM option FAR TOO LATE, when I was practically home already! Both banks were closed by that time, too!

Unfortunately, the undershirts turned out to be way too expensive (who pays $22 to $32 for one camisole?!) - the one I did buy was $6, but I thought there'd be three to a pack; NOPE! I also thought it was too long - good reason for that, since it was actually a tank top! No, I couldn't try them on in a fitting room first! Hopefully, I can return it tomorrow with a receipt even though it's opened - if not, at least it was on clearance? Heh. So much for NOT going out from Monday night (whenever I get home from JACK BAUER) to Friday evening! (Fellowship) Ugh... I need the downtime now, too! Went to Tazza and bought a blueberry bubble tea.

Then I went to Shoppers Drug Mart - the ONE day I decide to be lazy and go out in public wearing sweatpants and such, Lily and her daughter Hannah catch me out! Oh well... Lily hailed me as I was preoccupied with figuring out what to buy first. She was with Hannah and another little girl, who she introduced to me as Sarah, Hannah's cousin. I said hi to the girls, who said that they had (colorful) popcorn - I think Sarah even offered me one from the Kernels Popcorn bag, but of course I demurred! Lily asked me how things were - not too bad, and the girls had just finished playing for a LONG time at the airplane play area. She thought she'd get some cream, but didn't. Was good to see them, though!

Was going to get some GreenWorks laundry detergent since it was on sale, but the Purex (Sunshine Clean) detergent was on an even better sale! $3.99 wins over $7.99, any day. I like the smaller bottles they have - less waste is good, indeed! Got a few greeting cards, and used an in-store coupon to save $2 as well. (Tara's birthday, parents' anniversary, Jon and Harmony's first anniversary) Also picked up some Blistex raspberry lemonade lip balm / a red vanilla Herbal Essences swirly shampoo and conditioner set at the store, so at least THAT part of things went according to plan. Got home and prepped the cards, then took some Vitamin C and echinacea - for the latter, I'm not sick. But you never know what you could pick up in public! And yes, I'm aware I now sound like a germ-phobic person. Oh well! And now I have to get ready to leave again... sigh.

You Love to Talk About Ideas

You like your conversations to be deep and meaningful. You are not a big fan of small talk.

You are open to all sorts of conversation topics, especially if they are unique or interesting. You love it when a conversation takes you somewhere unexpected.

You will talk about anything, even if it's controversial or weird. You aren't shy about speaking your mind.

You may shock people with what you're willing to talk about, but at least it's more interesting than discussing the weather.

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Trinidad food, penis, periods, plantains, words, portmanteaus, Latin, Bra, and more!

Eric picked me up after going to the bank, so I spent most of the ride analyzing Mr. Creep and Randal's actions of this morning. I'm sure some of it sounded like a rant, but COME ON. He said that he didn't know anyone by the name of Mr. Creep - well, that's what I call him, so TOO BAD! It's not like he hears it, and I'm aware it's behind his back... I'm not going to stop, because my feeling STILL has not abated since October! When we got to Jeremy's, we saw Dianne and Wesley going in, so we rushed to make it in the building as well.

Saw David busy with plantains and jerk chicken in the kitchen - he greeted me with "LES!" Always a good thing, haha. (Christon was there, and the perfidious blackguard Raymond's presence was unfortunate!) Jen and Randal came in later (they're getting too close), and Jon and Harmony came in after we had started dinner. The rice cooker controls wouldn't stay down, but the coconut rice still turned out okay. We discussed Haiti, our NOT being needed there now, oil, Kelowna, UBC, Latin words, DANGEROUS BOOK FOR BOYS, advice on girls, word origins (Randal HAD to showcase his intelligence, but I held my own - PORTMANTEAU!), Dianne's pediatrics textbook questions, postscripts / typesetting, STUPID grammar mistakes ("to / two / too" and "your / you're / ur / u" and "there / their / they're"), and more stuff before we ate.

I noticed that the coleslaw / salad seemed pretty salty, but I wasn't going to say anything and be rude just in case Dave made it that way on purpose, since it could be that way in Trinidad! Then Dave asked whether anyone noticed that very fact about it, so I was free to tentatively say yes. Jen said that she'd noticed the same thing, but didn't want to say anything for the same reason. Turns out that Christon had mixed up the salt and sugar jars in Jeremy's cupboards! We decided not to tell Jon and Harmony when they arrived from swing dancing a few minutes later - they definitely noticed something!

For some reason, we started discussing THE PENIS / CIRCUMCISION. Dianne said she had a case involving a little boy whose penis was six inches long. His parents didn't think anything was wrong with that until he took off his pants in front of neighbors at a house party... we couldn't imagine being those neighbors and having to say something! The doctors cut off his testosterone, and it shrunk back to normal. Dianne also said that there are people who come in for circumcisions when they're six to over thirty years old! WHAT THE?! Sure, there are aesthetic / cleanliness / religious reasons, but OH MAN. Of course it hurts a baby too, but that was CRAZY to hear about! Then there are the cases of people who had a REALLY short penis as babies - it was burned off, and the baby was raised as a girl. When the kid grew up, she always said that she felt like a boy - later, the "girl" twin committed suicide. I think I remember reading about that!

Jon brought up Beijing's penis restaurant, and then I asked if he remembered Steph and Chantal telling us about Mom taking them to the exotic meats store. Since I knew the story better than he did, I was happy to have a rapt audience as I told them about how the bull penis' testicles were each in their own rather large bag. Even Raymond involuntarily laughed, especially when I described how the girls said the owner could only say "BALL" and not the proper term! Then Jon gave Christon some TMI about Steph, and wondered what it was like to have a period or something. (Steph, Mom, and I were fairly open about it!) Jen, Harmony, and I quickly educated him! We talked about fertility / vitality, the SALTY root vegetables (which Ray had actually LIKED, along with the twice-burned beef stew!), cilantro and waste, Peardrax drink, Tiger Malt, TING lemonade, and more.

When we got to trans fats / celery in oil / McDonalds / Jeremy's familial health history / age predictions / heart attacks / butter vs. margarine, I had a rapt audience AGAIN as I told them how Steph's old roommate Jessica Marr had used up a pound of butter a week for her rice and such - SO GROSS! Christon said that margarine was one away from plastic - I believe it! After we greeted Ryan coming home, Jon mentioned to Eric that he'd seen Scott recently (the other day?), and apparently Scott is doing much better from a tough personal time for him. Good to hear! I encountered a change problem, and I'm sure that Raymond and Randal said that couldn't break a $5 bill because Christon was asking on MY behalf! (Raymond more so...) Told Dave that I'd received his comment on my "I HATE MORNINGS!" Facebook status (and thanked him for cooking on such a large scale for the first time), and he called me his "favorite prolific wall writer," hehe. Also said that I should write a blog - after what happened to my last (and only) public one, I dunno!

Discussed cloth bags, compost, Westerns, Peggy, and other things too before heading home. Eric dropped Jon and Harmony off, and then asked me about JACK BAUER tomorrow - I had NO idea. Then he spent some of the ride "encouraging" me via teasing... I didn't notice any laughing at my jokes from a certain quarter (because I didn't wanna know...), and I told him about the STRESS ILLNESS that I experienced in Season 6 when it was ALL about Randal! YOU PEOPLE ARE RIDICULOUS!!!! I wouldn't go because I need the downtime, but I want to see if Eric says anything. If he does, I'll nip it in the bud! Got home to a call from Steph - of COURSE Mom wants to know if I'm going. So I had to call her - she wasn't impressed when I said I'd call Eric tomorrow. Well, I do what I want - although I guess a status comment is KINDA like an email in that he gets a notification! (Dave will, too - it was about fixing a tire which WASN'T the one that went flat at church today, and Caribbean flavors - and he LIKED it!) Yikes! I LOVE DOWNTIME, THOUGH!

Trivia fact for Monday, Jan. 25: What is celebrated at a popular festival held biannually in Bra, Italy? Cheese. The medieval city holds the four-day cheese festival every other September. Bra is in the Piedmonte area of northern Italy.

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Sunday, January 24, 2010

I really need to quit declining these lunch invitations... Cookie Machine and Light Bulb Machine!

DAMMIT! This thing just restarted when I was about to leave! Thank goodness for Semagic and its quick editing!

When my dad picked me up this morning, I asked where Mom was - working, he said. Oh good, I could be a bit more relaxed! Said hi to Grandma, of course. Got to service, and gave little Nathan a giant candy cane while saying hi to Phil... playfully tapped Dave W. on the shoulder as I headed to my seat, too. Noticed Christon talking to Mr. Creep, who was sitting in the last row of the first section. He must have noticed little Victoria and her mom sitting in that section - yikes! Randal also greeted me with "Hi, neighbor" when we were directed to shake hands with others - I guess it's okay. (you can bet that I'll analyze those things with Eric later on, haha) Jeremy sat by me when he came in JUST at the start, and Christon sat by him - lucky Steph had a pew ALL TO HERSELF in front of us when she got in thirty seconds after we started. Told her that it was a good thing Mom was working, and she called me "bad" - hey, not being annoyed is a GOOD THING! Fell asleep for a few minutes during the sermon, after doing my hasty Sunday School prep, heh.

When Phil introduced Selwyn as our new part-time administrator, Steph and I had NO idea that Dad was transitioning to part-time work as the administrator! She and I just shrugged when Jeremy and Christon asked us about it, haha. Almost forgot the green bag with Jon and Harmony's stuff in it - when I went back to get it, I saw Jon, so told him to take it from the pew, haha. In the fellowship hall, I hailed Eric, and asked him if he were going to Sunday Dinner tonight - Dave W. came up (with his hands raised in the air) JUST as I gave his cooking as a reason why Diven should come, so I had to say "The reason why you hear your name is that I'm trying to convince Eric to come FOR SURE tonight as opposed to just MAYBE!" Eric asked what time the dinner was; when I said 6, he said he'd leave before 5:30 - as long as he gives me a call, this should be okay.

Talked to Harmony, Connie, Jen, Jon, Karen Lew, Lincoln, Hien, Andrea, Mary, Danielle, Andrew, Adam, Eunice, Lawrence, Emily C., Emily L., and others: safety doing SERVANTS in groups or in the house, not stealing drugs, hockey games, "hi," dinner, COFFEE, Minute Rice vs. Rooster Brand Chinese rice, gooey stuff, hanging out next week because of wedding planning stress (at least I'll have Monday to Thursday as pure downtime!), the old Green Village, Alan / Polly, and more. Uncle Peter reminded me to go upstairs and help Auntie Ying - I knew, but I didn't go right away because (as usual) I got distracted by the little kids! This week, it was Allison "making friends" with Mattias, who's ten months younger than she is. A bunch of people (including Eric / Anita / Steph / Mike / Julie / Karen I.) were encircling the toddlers, and Allison gave me a piece of Honeycomb cereal when I said hi to her... how cute!

Went upstairs to the Cubbies room for toddler Sunday School - lots more space for the kids to play! Said hi to Rachel's grandma, Auntie Ying, Conor, Amos, Esther, David, and Evelyn - the boys were playing with Transformers, and pretending things were machines. I read a couple of kiddy books to Esther; she said "yes" whenever I asked her if she liked something, heh. Thanks to Emily telling the Awana story yesterday (which has been the same as the Sunday School weekly story for a few weeks now), I knew what to say. Auntie Ying thought I was clear today - well, I guess that's good.

Had to jog Conor's memory about yesterday's story, but he remembered after all. My mini-stickers served as representations of their family after they drew in the tent on the Sunday School material. After that, I asked Conor and Amos whether they wanted to draw - once I'd located the paper inside a storage tub, they were good to go. They drew various silly machines: Chocolate Chip Cookie Machine, Fridge Machine, Light Bulb Machine, and more. Conor wanted me to label his, so of course I did! After Sunday School, I went downstairs to the fellowship hall - Dave invited me for a light lunch and then grocery shopping with Christon. I declined on the grounds of lunch with my grandma - I need to quit doing that, otherwise he'll think I don't want to have lunch with him and the usual group! Maybe next week, haha.

Steph had left before Sunday School to help someone move, so that was fine. Eric fielded a call from Jon and Harmony because his tire was flat - yikes! Good thing he had a spare! I told Christon that I'd see him tonight, and ignored Mr. Creep although he didn't say anything to me. As I told Eric on Friday, I'd prefer it if he didn't say anything at all - just pretend he doesn't exist, heh. I know Christon might have sympathy for people with slightly bashed-in noses or whatever, but seriously.

Sat down with a Bathroom Reader to wait for Dad to finish counting money - Catherine greeted me, and thanked me for the crayons and felts I'd given her girls. Hey, I know the girls' birthdays are coming up! She said she'd remember my birthday, so we'll see! Apparently, Hannah had thrown up in the washroom yesterday, and obviously didn't feel like coming to church today - oh no! Talked about my understanding / writing / reading Cantonese, the girls' Chinese school, and more. She then talked to Auntie Sarah about stuff; I greeted Priscilla and her dad Rick when they passed by at separate times. (and also Chung Yan and Mattias) Grandma was busy talking to someone who turned out to be Catherine's mother - NICE!

We finally left to go for a Mui's lunch at 1:45 - apparently, the Haiti relief donations made counting the money offering more complicated! In the car, Grandma randomly gave me a can of salmon which she apparently got from one of her friends - interesting! I asked Dad when he'd decided to go part-time: late last year, he said. On the way home, Dad asked about Sunday Dinner / Jeremy / Eric / the Olympics road closures / the Sunday School kids and their parents / all the stuff in my bags that I brought to church which IS needed despite what he thinks. When I finally got home, I called my brother and sister to say that I'd left church at 1:45 - way later than usual! Jon kinda reminded me about spending time with Grandma: sure, just give me some consecutive days of downtime FIRST! (even Thursday would be fine...) Planned to take a nap, but it's not possible now - oh well. Also talked to Kenny very briefly, and noticed that Dave had jokingly replied to my "I hate mornings" FB status message which was written right before I left for church. "You should be here (church) by now - wait a minute. I haven't even left the house yet! Hahahaha!" Yeah... I'll let you know when I can get to church from Richmond in six minutes, eh? Likely to be NEVER!!!! Eric just called, so YAY for getting things done in time!

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Yuck - MORNINGS! / Gangsta rappers and debut albums

Matthew added me to Facebook - cool. I hate mornings. Enough said. Not my fault I can't get to sleep till 4 AM or thereabouts! And yes, this includes lying in bed staring at the ceiling, wishing I could sleep!

You Are a Cirrus Cloud

You're a bit mysterious and reserved. You mostly keep to yourself and do your own thing.

Some people may even consider you elusive. You're hard to track down at times.

People who know you find you to be very transparent. It's always easy to tell what you're thinking about.

You tend to drift more than most people. You're always trying out new ideas, friends, and even personalities.

Trivia fact for Sunday, Jan. 24: What gangsta rapper's debut album was entitled Rhyme Pays? Ice-T's, in 1987.

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