Thursday, May 29, 2008

Shocking News Flash: Monkeys in Control!

I know, I know. Weeks without a single post, and then two in one day. Have I gone mad? Perhaps, but I felt it was my duty to inform the world of this grave threat.

Okay, not actually a monkey, but it is a good picture.


I just couldn't help it. I was watching CNN (the official propaganda wing of the Bush administration), when on the news ticker (you know, the little strip at the bottom of the screen that tells you so little about news stories that it is absolutely worthless) a story flashed by that chilled me to the very marrow of my bones. It read:

"Monkeys control robots with their minds."

Horror of horrors. Surely the end is near. How can the human race survive when faced with such a threat? I can see it now: monkeys sitting their trees while mentally controlling an army of robots as it rampages through the streets of our cities in search of bananas.

Global warming? Ha! It is clear now what the real threat is, and it may indeed be too late to take any action to stop it. Soon the few humans that have not been destroyed will be enslaved and forced to wear ill-fitting costumes while performing silly tricks.

No wonder robots never seem to do what we want them to.

On Forgiveness

"Time's march is a web of causes and effects, and asking for any gift of mercy, however tiny it may be, is to ask that a link be broken in that web of iron, ask that it be already broken. No one deserves such a miracle. Nor can I plead that my trespasses be forgiven; forgiveness is the act of another, and only I myself can save me. Forgiveness purifies the offended party, not the offender, who is virtually untouched by it."

--Jorge Luis Borges, from his short story "A Prayer" (1969).

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Constant Reader, Be Advised...

To my surprise, several of my friends actually admitted to being regular readers of my blog. I guess I should start being more careful about what I write...

I'm often too busy with other stuff to write anything here, and I can imagine that it is annoying for people to go to a blog hoping to find something new, only to find the same thing that was there the last few times they checked.

So, if you like to check my blog, but don't want to waste your time coming here unless there is something new, you can "subscribe" to The Shorty Method and receive an alert anytime there is something new.

It all has to do with something called RSS, which sounds a little daunting but is actually very simple. It's basically the same thing that websites use to update news headlines and stuff like that. If you want to know more about it, just type "What is RSS?" into a Google search.

The important thing is that you don't really have to know anything about it to make it work.

All you have to do is go to the bottom of my page where it says Subscribe to: Posts (Atom), click on the link, and then figure out how you want to subscribe. You can have it show up using Yahoo, Google, or with an RSS reader program.

For example, I subscribe to my own blog (I know, I know) on my My Yahoo page. Along with the other stuff there, it shows a list of the ten most recent blog entries I've made. It is pretty convenient if you use My Yahoo anyway.

Another way you can be notified of any new posts is to become my friend on Facebook (I set it up so my blog posts show up there, too). Be advised, however, that I'm only going to accept friend offers from people who are actually my friends (not that I expect the millions of people who read my blog each day to make such an offer, but I just don't want anyone's feelings to get hurt if I reject them).

So, if you care at all about this, it might make your online life a little easier, or at least save you a few clicks.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

我過年的活動在清泉 - My New Year Activity in Cing Chyuan

This is about my Chinese New Year, which I spent in the mountains with my friends. I wrote the Chinese part as a presentation I had to give to my Chinese class. It is based on the picture below. I've also included my other photos and a couple videos of that time.


zhè zhāng zhào piàn shì wǒ guò nián de huó dòng. wǒ qù
這 張 照 片 是 我 過 年 的 活 動。 我 去

wǒ péng yǒu jiā, zài qīng quán. qīng quán shì yī gè zài shān
我 朋 友 家, 在 清 泉。 清 泉 是 一 個 在 山

shàng de tài yǎ zú cūn.
上 的 泰 雅 族 村。


cóng xīn zhú dào nà gè dì fāng bù tài yuǎn, kāi chē zhī yào yī gè
從 新 竹 到 那 個 地 方 不 太 遠﹐ 開 車 只 要 一 個

zhōng tóu zuǒ yòu. wǒ men hěn zǎo jiù cóng xīn zhú chū fā ,
鐘 頭 左 右。 我 們 很 早 就 從 新 竹 出 發,

kě shì yīn wéi xū yào tíng zài chāo jí shì cháng mǎi chī de dōng xī,
可 是 因 為 須 要 停 在 超 級 市 場 買 吃 的 東 西﹐

xiàng pí jiǔ, pú táo jiǔ wēi shì jì, táng guǒ, shén me de, hái yào mǎi rì yòng pǐn,
像 啤 酒﹐ 葡 萄 酒﹐ 威 士 忌﹐ 糖 果﹐什 麼 的, 還 要 買 日 用 品﹐

biān pào, suǒ yǐ wǒ men xià wǔ guò hòu cái dào.
鞭 砲, 所 以 我 們 下 午 過 後 才 到。


suī rán qīng quán shì yī gè hěn měi de dì fāng, yòu yǒu shān yòu
雖 然 清 泉 是 一 個 很 美 的 地 方, 又 有 山 又

yǒu hé, kě shì zhù nà lǐ de rén dōu hěn qióng. Yīn wéi zhù nà lǐ de rén
有 河﹐ 可 是 住 那 裡 的 人 都 很 窮。 因為 住 那 裡 的 人

nà me qióng, tā men de shēng huó gēn lù yíng chā bù duō yī yang.
那 麼 窮﹐ 他 們 的 生 活 跟 露 營 差 不 多一 樣。

bǐ fāng shuō, tā men de jiā bú dàn hěn xiǎo , ér qiě yě méi yǒu chuáng, jiā rén
比 方 說﹐ 他 們 的 家 不 但 很 小﹐而 且 也 沒 有 床﹐ 家 人,

kè rén dōu yī qǐ zài dì bǎn shàng shuì jiao. duì wǒ lái shuō zhè gēn zhù zài
客 人 都 一 起 在 地 板 上 睡 覺。對 我 來 說﹐ 這 跟 住 在

zhàng péng yī yang. zài shān shàng dōng tiān fēi cháng lěng, lǐ miàn, wài miàn
帳 篷一 樣。 在 山 上 冬 天 非 常 冷﹐ 裡 面﹐ 外 面


dōu yī yàng lěng. suǒ yǐ wǒ men dei yī zhí chuān zhù wài tào, dài zhù mào zi
都 一 樣 冷。所 以 我 們 得 一 直(zhi2) 穿 著 外套﹐ 戴 著 帽 子

gēn shǒu tào.
跟 手 套。


tā men cháng cháng zài wài miàn shēng huǒ zuò fàn, huò kǎo ròu. yǒu shí
他 們 常 常 在 外 面 生 火 做 飯 ﹐ 或 烤 肉。 有 時

hòu tā men shòu liè dòng wù. tā men chī sōng shǔ, hóu zi, yě zhū, shén me de.
候` 他 們 狩 獵 動 物。 他 們 吃 松 鼠﹐ 猴 子﹐ 野 豬﹐ 什 麼 的。


zài zhè zhāng zhào piàn lǐ miàn, wǒ men zài wǒ péng yǒu jiā wài miàn kǎo yā zi.
在 這 張 照 片 裡 面﹐ 我們 在 我 朋 友 家 外 面烤 鴨 子。

suī rán yǒu huǒ, kě shì hái shì hǎo lěng.
雖 然 有 火﹐ 可 是 還 是 好 冷。


nà gè nán shēng shì wǒ péng yǒu mèi mèi de nán péng yǒu.
那 個 男 生 是 我 朋 友 妹 妹 的 男朋 友。


wǒ bù zhī dào tā de gōng zuò shì shén me. wǒ jué de tā shì liè rén, kě shì
我 不 知 道 他 的 工 作 是 什 麼。 我 覺 得 他 是 獵 人 可 是

bù què ding. wǒ xiǎng tā dà gài méi yǒu gōng zuò. wǒ yě bù zhī dào zhè gè xiǎo
不 確 定。 我 想 他 大 概 沒 有 工 作。 我 也 不 知 道 這 個 小

nǚ hái shì shéi de. wǒ yī zuò hǎo, tā men jiù bǎ tā dài lái gěi wǒ zhào gù.
女 孩 是 誰的。 我 一 坐 好﹐ 他 們 就 把 她 帶 來給 我 照 顧 。



zhè gè xiǎo péng yǒu shì wǒ péng yǒu lǎo dà de ér zi. tā zhēn de shì yě

這 個 小 朋 友 是 我 朋 友 老 大 的 兒 子。 他 真 的 是 野

mán rén. wǒ jué de zhù shān shàng de xiǎo hái dōu hěn yě tā men pǎo lái pǎo
蠻 人。我 覺 得 住 山 上 的 小孩 都 很 野。 他 們 跑 來 跑

qù, dà hǒu dà jiào, luàn fàng biān pào, dà shēng xiào, dào chù wán.
去﹐ 大 吼 大 叫﹐亂 放 鞭 砲﹐ 大 聲 笑, 到 處 玩。