My Birthday!

I had a pretty good birthday today, it was just an ordinary day until after classes. Happily I managed to dodge the obligatory "Happy Birthday" song by everyone in the commons at lunch by eating it in the coffee shop, and then for dinner, Will, Mary Rose, David Six, Tommy Duffy, and I went out for Sushi.
We went to a really good place called "Sumo Sushi" in Ventura, where the main attraction to college students is that if you eat there instead of getting take-out, all the sushi is half price. We ordered a very wide selection, with stuff like crab, California, Philadelphia, salmon, and tuna rolls, and then eel, octopus, crab, and other assorted sushi (not rolls).
We also ordered an quail egg shooter, but when it came, it was somewhat different from what Duffy, Mose and I (who thought we had seen it before) had expected.
Instead of being sushi or a roll, it was a small glass filed with some sort of liquid, with a bit of soy sauce and smelt eggs on the bottom, and a quail egg floating in it. It actually looked very pretty, the yellow of the quail egg nicely complimenting the blue tint of the glass, and mingling with the orange of the smelt eggs at the bottom.
So, though we had anticipated it to be a dish that could be shared, seeing as it wasn't, and it was my birthday, I shot it, and it actually tasted very good (yes, I was somewhat surprised at that).
Shortly after the rolls began to arrive, and after that the sushi, and we feasted on delicious raw and cooked fish, and the discussion was noticeably slowed for quite some time as everyone appreciated the fine cooking. David Six, who hadn't ever had sushi before, was somewhat hesitant at first, but soon was savoring the delicacies along with the rest of us. He was again a bit nervous when the second course, with the octopus (1st picture below, right side), smelt eggs (same picture, left side), and eel (3rd picture), arrived, but after trying the eels (which was perfectly, absolutely, heavenly stuff) he decided that contrary to his opinion after the 1st course ("It's good, but I wouldn't want to eat it forever"), that it definitely would be possible to live on sushi alone.

After we had finished all of the sushi (which actually took awhile, because unlike pizza, sushi is something to be enjoyed, not devoured), Will and I decided to fully enjoy the wasabi (the green stuff on our chopsticks in the bottom picture, btw, chopsticks are very fun to eat with, and I ought to get a pair), a very spicy hot paste used for seasoning the sushi (typically you stir a small amount of wasabi into the soy sauce into which you dip the sushi, because the wasabi is very potent.
So we each took a large hunk and ate it, letting it sit in our mouths for several seconds, spreading the flavor (it's actually a very unique, but good flavor, in spite of the intensity), and then breathing slowly and deeply, letting it clear out our sinuses. The sensation of slight burning in our nostrils actually felt pretty good, and I did it again with David afterwards. Our eyes smarted and watered a bit, but the taste lasted longer than the burning, and was definitely worth it. Mary Rose thought we were pretty crazy, but she already knew that.

Note: Upon reading the wikipedia articale, I came across these quotes, which make sense: "Wasabi (Japanese: 山葵) is a member of the cabbage family. Known as Japanese horseradish, its root is used as a spice and has an extremely strong flavor. Its hotness is more akin to that of a hot mustard than a chile pepper, producing vapors that burn the sinus cavity rather than the tongue."
"Fortunately for those who either through malice or unfamiliarity [or craziness] come into contact with too much of this condiment, the burning sensations it can induce are short-lived compared to the effects of chile peppers."

We then went to a local boba tea shop to get tea, except for the unfortunate fact that they were out of boba , so we had to settle for tea with jelly in it, which was still very good, although not as good as tea with boba in it.
Random bit of trivia from wikipedia: "In September 2004, while defending a US$18 billion weapon purchase plan, the ROC Ministry of National Defense used bubble tea as an example of the overall cost of the proposed purchase. The Ministry stated that the total cost of the weapons systems would be equivalent to the money saved if all Taiwanese drank one fewer pearl milk tea per week for a period of twenty years."
(!? Is that supposed to be alot or a little?)

We got back to campus at about 8, and Mary Rose, David, Tommy and I went up to the Owl to watch "Howl's Moving Castle" (Will had other obligations, such as watching a movie with Michelle). It was a really good, fun anime movie, although Mary Rose was traumatized at parts, since she had read the book, and apparently the movie didn't always hold true to the original idea or story line. We all enjoyed it though.

After that Duffy went down to campus to sleep, and David wandered off to sleep on another side of the watertower while Mary Rose and I watched the first two episodes of Fruits Basket, and cute little Japanese anime, involving a little girl who goes to lives with people who are really zodiac signs who turn into animals when hugged. (don't ask why, my only response will be "it's Japanese")

Finally I went to bed, very content and happy, with good friends, food, and movies.

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The Battle (or lack thereof) of Cuteness (or lack thereof)

We had a big long prop today, from Apollonius Conics, Book II, Prop 20. When we have one that's big and long, most people either don't study it much at all, because they don't get hard props and probably won't be called, or study it a ton, because they get hard props and will be called. And since they've studied it alot and know how to do it well it's nice to be called so that their hard work is worth something.

So Fiona and Will were arguing over the prop, because they both wanted it, when Bridget said, "I heard he took volunteers in the morning section."

Will shouted, "Good!"

And then Fiona said in her inimitable quiet fiesty cute Fiona-voice,
"Don't you dare!
...I'm cuter than you!"

Will shrugged and looked mildly flustered, everyone else laughed, and Fiona blushed.

The general concensus was that she was the winner hands-down.

I leave it to your judgement.

Fiona, looking cute as usual. Posted by Picasa

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Will, tossing around a hunk of pie dough for some reason, which gives him great joy.

Btw, Fiona got the prop, because when Mr. Clark said, "I'll take a volunteer, while Will half-heartedlyraised his hand, Fiona said (and Fiona speaking is a rarity in class) cheerfully, "I'll do it!"


Seminar Quotes over the past couple months

During Dante:

"You have to start with the big sins first, you have to say "I need to stop murdering people"" - James Berquist in Seminar

“It seems to present the idea that Evil if fun, Good is boring.” – Maria Cross

During The Fairie Queen:

“He’s a wimp! He doesn’t seem to be able to do anything on his own, he only survives because he falls against a tree, and then down a well, and then he almost accidentally cuts off the dragon’s head!” – Angela Nicolini

“It seems like he’s a wimp who can’t do it himself.” – Angela Nicolini
“So if I told you to do a hard job, and told you that everyone who had tried to do it before you had DIED, would you be a wimp for doing it and needing a little bit of help?” – Maria Cross

“So maybe it’s supposed to be a comedy” – Mr. Collins
“But it’s not funny” – James Berquist
“The Way Miss Nicolini described it it’s funny.” Mr. Collins

“She doesn’t do anything though, she just sits there and watches” - Angela
(very sweetly) “Maybe she’s praying for him.” - Michelle


I find this very very frightening.

But not all that surprising.
It's basically the plot of Tom Clancy's "Rainbow Six" where nutso evrionmental scientists decide to kill off 90% of humanity using ebola to "save the planet" Actually, methinks Tom Clancy ought to sue this guy for copyright violation. Anyways, the scary part is that he's able to speak like this at major universities and garner standing ovations from the impressionable young students there.
How wonderful. *rolls eyes*
(In case you're wondering, since I haven't used this feature before, just click on the title to go to the link)