Come on over to the porch.
::"If You Have To Go Away"::
Onesome - If You - If you were given a million dollars, what would you do with it? Well I have thought about this one. The first thing I would do is to pay off my student loans. Second buy a house. Third set aside a "safe investment" where I would keep most of the money. After that? I'm not sure--probably part of it would go towards the construction of a floor-to-ceiling library in my house. :-)
Twosome - Have To - What is it that you have to do today? Or is there something you're dreading to do this week? Well I really have to do laundry, I've been putting it off for a bit and I really shouldn't let it go past today.
Threesome - Go Away - Where's that place you've been imagining to take a dream trip to lately? Oh, this one is very easy! Twin Peaks Bible Camp. I went there every summer with my parents when I was growing up--they cooked and I was a staff brat or a camper, :-). I really grew up there over the summers and except for last summer when I had a chance to fly out I've not been there since 1999. I am really, really missing it right now (third week of four ends Saturday). However, even if I could get people to cover for me at work (and if I'd planned ahead of time I'm sure I could have, I didn't have the means to get out there. :( Of course I probably should have thought about this earlier as I'm hoping to have a full time job well before next summer so this would have been a great time to go if I could have just saved the money and gotten a cheap fare. *sigh*
Thursday, July 28, 2005
Run for your lives!!! Oh wait, never mind--they mean no harm. I think... They come from here.
Enjoy! I put the feed from this site and the three question site that Mark uses in my RSS news feed in my Gmail inbox so that I'll see them and remember to answer them. :-) Better late than never, eh?
- Believing:: baptism
- Invasion:: of the Body Snatchers (though I've not actually seen this flick)
- Boys:: will be boys
- Island:: nation
- Repeatedly:: hit
- Normal:: life
- Hex:: barn
- Tuxedo:: suit
- Virgin:: Islands
- Cereal:: orange juice (I can't stand milk on cereal)
Enjoy! I put the feed from this site and the three question site that Mark uses in my RSS news feed in my Gmail inbox so that I'll see them and remember to answer them. :-) Better late than never, eh?
Wednesday, July 27, 2005
No don't refresh--that is the right image, :-). I'd like to welcome you to view the new and improved website of your favourite blogger--no wait, stop!! Don't go to another site, I mean this one, me! :( Okay, a small jest about favouritism, but hey, what are a few jests among friends? Um, anyway, you may now go to BlackWolff.net and view an actual website. Granted it is just my book database, so it is a placeholder. But I plan to have a real website in the near future and then this will be moved to a section of the site.
Now understand this is only a tenth of my library, those books that I can access in my storage unit (most are buried)...and so this will be much larger someday.
Now understand this is only a tenth of my library, those books that I can access in my storage unit (most are buried)...and so this will be much larger someday.
Tuesday, July 26, 2005
Hmmm...where should I start? Well how about with fire, will that do? Fire can be fun to play with. :-) No of course I'll issue the usual precautions--be safe, if you're a kid don't get near fire without parental permission, yada, yada, yada...but I know all that. Anyway, I've had fun before at a campfire putting dead pine branches and watching the flames soar. One time at a family reunion (I'm sure I've told this story too many times) I even participated in the placing of a small dead tree (less than two feet high) onto a campfire--those flames really soared!
Well that is all well and good, oh but wait, candles can be fun too! I especially like dripping melted wax into paper cups of water and watching the patterns you can make with the hot wax and cold water. But whenever I'm doing this I make sure I'm outside away from plants or I'm over a suitable surface (say a fireplace, bricks, or concrete). That makes sense, right? Oh, and you don't ever light anything bigger than a match indoors, right? Well it isn't always that way. Now I don't intend to humiliate anybody so I won't name names. Please humour me. Now let us begin.
But as some have misunderstood this I'll state clearly, this isn't an autobiographical story!
Imagine this--you're home alone (or nearly so) and you're bored, what to do? Hey! Why don't you play with fire? You've bought some matches at the dollar store, so why not light them up anywhere? Well after that experiment (which left a, shall we say, telling odor behind) let us fast-forward several weeks.
You are again bored, so this time you decide to light toilet paper on fire and drop it in the toilet when it gets really going (you don't want to start a real fire after all, right?). Well the problem is that the smell of the buring paper wafts upstairs where others can smell it, others that tell you to cease and desist--especially since the smell lingers. Okay, on to part three, and no we don't fast-forward weeks, only a couple hours until you're completely alone in the house.
This time there is nobody around to tell you no and so when you're in the bathroom (the euphemism at Twin Peaks is "brushing your teeth" or "talking to John") taking care of business you light up a match. Now this may be to eliminate certain ordors or just for fun--that doesn't really matter. But it is of course no fun to douse the match in water, that would be too much effort to do or to remember to do--so you just drop the unlit (it is safe when you can't see any flames, right?) match into the trash can.
However, the trash can decides not to play along with this little drama but instead to cause trouble. The refuse in the small trash can decided that with the introduction of a hot (but not burning, remember the flames are gone!) match it is time to start a party, a hot party, with lots of smoke! Now at this point panic must set in, especially with all of the thick smoke making it very difficult to breath and see--but you keep a firm grip on yourself and resolve to do whatever is necessary.
Whatever is necessary thankfully only involves taking the small trash can (remember it is just smoking, so there obviously isn't any real fire) into the kitchen and putting it inside the kitchen trash bag (full of paper shreddings) and taking that outside and dumping it in the tipped over trash barrel. No this isn't easy, this is no simple metal barrel, this is a wheelable plastic trash bin! These smoking things will be safe in there, eh? :-) It is only moments later that you realize your mistake.
Much to your dismay the trash barrel now starts to catch on fire and melt. But thankfully the garden hose is nearby and you can finally solve the problem with quite a bit of water. Hey, the barrel is irreparably melted, but that doesn't matter, you had fun! Now all that you need to do is wait for someone to walk in the house and notice the pecuilar odor, then the real fun can begin. Oh, and remember, the air will take hours to clear, even with an open window--but what could be more fun?
Ehm, okay, the story is over, we can stop that and get back to more relevant events in life. I've been to see a couple movies recently and I posted some reviews on my forums, so I thought I would duplicate those here (with some nice visuals).
As you can see, I did enjoy all three of these movies. The first movie I was quoted a price of $7.00 so I just paid it and went in (though it was the student price). Hey, I won't complain about that, and if they think I look that young, fine, it doesn't hurt me. However, when we went to see Batman Begins the man (well boy really) asked me if I was a student and so, of course, I truthfully replied in the negative. If they want to assume my age and give me a discount I really don't care, I just won't lie to get that favour.
War of the Worlds
I really enjoyed this film, in fact my nephew and I came out very impressed. Part of the appeal was that it was so different from what I thought it would be. I hadn't read much about the movie and so I saw Tom Cruise's name and though, oh, an action movie like Independence Day. But of course it was nothing like that. There was one scene where Cruise's character plays the hero, but for the most part he was just a father trying to keep his kids safe.
The special effects seemed seamless to me, but that is true of most big-budget movies today. I also thoroughly approved of the different method of arrival for the attacking aliens. The original plot of capsules taking off from Mars worked in the world of primitive late nineteenth century astronomy but wouldn't work too well today.
Anyway, the movie was tightly focused on Cruise and his family, there not being any scenes (or not more than a couple) that didn't feature them in some way. Also while many aspects of the book (from what I remember) were condensed or tweaked many were still there.
Well like my friend John I thought this movie was great--but I don't know much of the Batman story so I can't really comment from that angle. I really enjoy Liam Neeson's acting so it was fun to see him, and I thought Christian Bale was very believable. I really understood what Batman was about. The technology he used seemed somewhat more believable today than say thirty or forty years ago, . Incidentally the Batmobile was completely real and performed all of its own stunts without CGI or trick photography (except that I'm sure they didn't actually drive on the roofs of Chicago where they did extensive filming).
This movie didn't have a "kiddy comic book" feel like I think is somewhat attributed to some American comic book flicks. Rather it felt like a (pardon me for saying this and i don't mean to imply comics are trashy or low-brow) "real movie." *shrugs* I enjoyed it quite a bit and look forward to planned sequels.
IMAX - Space Station
I know this isn't something you can just go to the nearest theater to see--but if you can you should! This film is narrated by Tom Cruise (forget any personal dislike of the man, he does a good job) and filmed by IMAX crews on earth and Astronauts and Cosmonauts in space. You get to see the very beginning of the International Space Station and experience life with its crews and those bringing up new components as they assemble the pieces. This is the closest we can come (apart from a sci-fi flick) to actually going into space--so if you like space and/or sci-fi this movie should be a must!
I'm looking forward to seeing Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. See I've long been a fan of Roald Dahl's books (beyond just Charlie and James and the Giant Peach and when I saw the first movie I was sorely disappointed, especially where Charlie got into the stuff he wasn't supposed to (unlike the book--just like Peter Jackson twisted the character of Faramir for "dramatic emphasis" and to give him depth). I've heard many good things about this new movie, chief among them that it is not a remake, but instead a new look at the book. *whew* It is quite a relief that they're not remaking the old movie but instead making a new movie from the book. I think too often people forget that some movies came from books, and most readers will freely admit (yes it is a different format, so don't hang up arguing there!) that the book is better. Movies are good for what they are, and you can have a great adaptation. But books that come first always have more depth and have a different flavour. Speaking of books...
I've also been reading somewhat lately, though it has trailed off a bit as I've been cataloging my books instead of just reading them, :-). I have a book catalog program that is really great. You simply type in the ISBN number and it searches various on-line databases (I usually use the Library of Congress, Amazon.com, and Barnes and Noble) for information. Then you accept that information (usually including a cover image from Amazon) and edit it so that it is completely accurate and in the form you like (I sometimes have to correct the price or page numbers). Then you can enter in "personal information" like where you bought the book, what condition it was in, and what you paid for it. With a good book I can enter all information in under thirty seconds, though some take a bit longer, especially if I have to do an image search for the correct cover. I hate the fact that reissues of a book with a different cover have the same ISBN!! Grrr... It makes life so difficult sometimes, ;-).
And now if you'll permit a seeming non sequitur, please welcome this great image of a black wolf: Now I don't know how many of you know, but my general on-line persona is Black Wolff (or some variation of that when it is already taken--note the two "f"s, that is normal). In my founding story for my sci-fi universe I created the character of Josif Wolff, and eventually the Wolff clan. They've somewhat become surrogate identities for me and I've often used differnt Wolff names in games or where a pseudonym is needed: d'Lexus Wolff is an intelligence operative, Josif Wolff is in special forces, Lakota Wolff is a fleet admiral, etc... Well all of this is to say that I'm going to have a website up soon. Now rest assured, this blog won't be going anywhere. I may not always update on a set schedule (but this update and the last have been abnormally large, so I hope that counts for something, :-), but I'll be here. Now a few years back I gave website design a try with a free site, and remarkably that site is still around (but please don't laugh!) www.blackwolff.i8.com --rather a nice short address for a free site, eh? I just couldn't ever get fully interested in it, and the pop-ups drove me nuts. Well now I have an actual registered address, but the site isn't up yet. One of my friends is going to help me with the designing, but he is currently away on a backpacking trip far from electronic succor and aid. But in the meantime my forums have been moved from their old location on the server of a friend's old gaming clan to his new server, ;-). Yeah, I don't have my own space yet, but for now this is a great fit (especially with a server admin I know so well!). Please feel free to visit www.blackwolff.net/forum/ --though you'll have to be registered, and then your account has to be approved by me before you can post. I usually just invite people I think will be interested--and I think many of those who read this are already site members.
Well back to life... In addition to working in the Space Exhibit at the Cincinnati Museum Center I am the scheduling supervisor for evening events--basically I staff the evening events when the museum(s) are rented out for special events. Well I think I'm getting to be too good at my job--I used to take at least two hours every time I went in (every other week) at the start--but this time if I hadn't done some extra stuff I would have left between thirty and sixty minutes after ariving. *shrugs* But I did do a few things extra and then headed down to the Omnimax (see Space Station above--or look up, you might see the real thing instead of just the reel thing!).
Now I'm sure you're looking at the timestamp and wondering, what on earth was he doing up that late? But hey, these blogs don't write themselves! But if they did I'd have a much easier time of it--heck even if they could take dictation--or no, wait, whenever I think about blogging something (I do often, but I'm usually too lazy to actually go blog) it could automatically blog for me. Yes, there is the future of blogging! ThoughtBlogs! :-) But I suspect they would need a very good edit feature. But that is beside the point. I had the opportunity to sleep in this morning, and I know I'll be fine on just a bit less sleep tomorrow--I've done it before, and I've caught up on sleep over the past few days so I'll be great at work.
Though speaking of sleep... Sunday was no picnic. Chris called me the night before (the little traitor) and asked me if I would take him to the airport at 05:30. I agreed, even though I wished I could somehow take his place and fly out to camp instead of him. (They really need more pictures on that site, the few there do not do it justice!) It was a surprise though when he woke me up right at five thirty--I'd expected a bit of time, but really all I did was throw on clothes, grab my hat and keys, and head out the door--so it wasn't that bad. The temperature wasn't perfect, but it wasn't all that bad at that time either. :-) Chris of course got to the airport okay and caught the second flight out to Colorado, but I couldn't get back to sleep. Finally between seven and eight (much closer to eight) I think I finally drifted off--though without setting my alarm to get up for church. Unfortunately then I slept right through both services, :(. I haven't done this in a while--but then I had to get up later in the day to take Ryan into work, so I didn't just laze around all day! :-) Aye, he works at the Golden Arches and brought me a Parfeit the other day--I'd not had one of theirs before, and it was great! :-)
I think I've mentioned before how cream cheese on bagels is really starting to grow on me, right? Well I'm still enjoying it--though I did make a mistake when I went for the cheapest bagels this last time--shopping at Kroger I noticed that Sara Lee bagels were even cheaper than Kroger brand, so I picked them up. Big mistake! Sara may do cakes and pies (though my dad's homemade are of course better! :-)) she doesn't do bagels. I'm almost tempted to stop wasting my cream cheese and go and get some good bagels--in fact I might do that tomorrow after work. I've been getting the cinnamon raisin kind--I find them especially good to contrast with the flavour of the cream cheese.
Ah drat, I was going to type about one more thing (minimum) but for some reason I can't recall what it was. Now I'm not getting old, well not that old...and I'm not too tired. Zzzzzzz....*looks arund* No, no--that was just my fingers on the keys, no actual mid-post snoring going on here. No siree, not here! Zzzzzzzz....
Whew--I just hit Ctrl S on accident--being so used to it saving in Word and such that I didn't look to see it meant to publish here on Blogger. The post actually published itself for a moment, but I managed to click the edit button and save it as draft once again. *shrugs* Though it may have been all for nothing. I can't think of much more to type, so I think I'll have to sign off here...Wait, I did think of something! :-)
When the shuttle was set to launch a few days ago I was very excited and keyed up--the only bad part was that I would be at work. I even talked to a few people about the prospective launch that day--but I'm glad I didn't have to wait for it for hours--somebody told me of the cancellation a bit after the fact. Now once again a Tuesday launch is coming and I'm very much looking forward to that. I wish it could be like one man I talked to in the exhibit--he told me that he watched every one of the Saturn V moon launches from the beaches of Cape Canaveral: Hopefully we'll see a launch actually come off later today--I'm not sure if they plan on another go before the 31st if this one is scrubbed. Here is to hoping the following image is repeated in eight or so hours...
I tell you watching this and a Russian rocket launch on an Omnimax screen (i.e. IMAX dome--still five stories tall, but it curves, that is what the Museum Center has) is breathtaking an awesome.
Okay, this is what I was waiting for. Now I wasn't just typing fluff, but to some extent I was typing to type, ;-). I was trying to reach 3,000 words. I believe my last post reached that, but it included an extensive quote, so it wasn't all me. Well except for a couple pictures (which don't count in word counts) I typed every word of this post...so all 3,000 + words of it are mine. :-) Farewell and y'all come back now, yah hear?
PS I managed to top 3,100! :-)
Wednesday, July 13, 2005
I know, I haven't changed a bit, have I? Thanks!
Well we'll take things one at a time now... :-) Yeah, it has been a while, and no I don't have a good reason. Things have been a bit, I don't know what, different lately. My sister, brother-in-law, and all the little kids left July 01 for their summer vacation. I was left with the two older boys. They were left with grocery money and the understanding I had with my sister was that we would all pool the money (me the money I normally contribute to groceries) and go shopping. We'd have a menu for the week and actually cook food. Instead both of the boys say they want nothing to do with this and I'm stuck just on my own. Now I know that buying food on my own is expensive (I'm tired of people saying that!)--that is why I was upset. I believed that we would all be chipping in and thus there would be many real meals (I actually like eating real meals if you can believe that) not just a couple now and then. *sigh* But fine, my sister Laurie doesn't care what they do with the money so I've just been buying my own groceries and cooking my own food.
I was thinking of taking some pictures of the kitchen earlier though. :-) I've been cleaning all of my dishes, using the dishwasher. However one of the boys, uh, wasn't. It reminds me a bit of the mess that I left the first summer I stayed home alone. :-) Oh well, I refuse to be a maid to the boys. I clean up all my stuff and ignore whatever they do (be it clothes, dishes, or whatnot). Anyway, enough of that--everything is working out fairly well not. I'm alive with food in me so I'm not complaining anymore.
Okay, back to life. Well since I've last updated the Monkey King exhibit has closed its doors. :( Yes, my last day working on the exhibit was Saturday, July 02. Though that day we were short in the Space exhibit as well and as the other Monkey King supvervisor Kristen was supervising there (we took the place of a regular supervisor on vacation) we switched back and forth so I wasn't just sitting out front of Monkey King reading all day.
Yeah, I really can't complain about the reading I get to do with my job. Have I told you about that Mark? Minimum I read at least two hours a day--and if I'm lucky it is somewhere between three and four! :-) Yeah, life is great. When I'm at tickets or inside and nobody is around I can pull out a book! Of course as soon as I see people I put the book down and start talking to them. I especially enjoy talking to the kids.
For example I point out the lunar scoop that Alan Sheppard used to scoop up dust when he was on the moon as part of the Apollo 14 mission. We also have a camera used for pictures in the Apollo 17 lunar and command modules. Then I get them to guess why the clothes from the space shuttle have coverings for all pockets (zero-, or technically micro-, gravity is the answer). Finally at the moon rock display (yes we have an actual moon rock you can view) I illustrate with the kids how Apollo astronauts had to pick up samples. See those space suits weren't as well designed as those today--Apollo astronauts suits didn't have a joint at the waist. I drop my keys and ask the kids to pick them up, which is quite easy. Then I tell them that they're pretending to be Apollo astronauts, so they can't bend easily at their waist. Some realize right away that they have to bend their knees (which the astronauts did) but others take quite a while to figure it out. I also found out from another worker that Buzz Aldrin was upset that he wasn't going to land on the moon first, so he refused to take any pictures of Armstrong on the moon and so reportedly the following picture of Aldrin is the only still picture of Neil Armstrong on the moon (note the reflection).
Now unfortunately no photography is allowed in the exhibit, so I can't give you a photo-tour like I did with Monkey King. But hopefully soon I'll have read everything inside and be able to give you a full "radio-like" virtual tour (i.e. sans pictures) I can give you some awesome facts right now though. The Saturn V rockets (the largest ever launched) were sixty feet taller than the Statue of Liberty (taller than a thirty story building), and weighed (fully loaded) as much as a Navy destroyer. Furthermore the fireball they produced upon launch was 3,000 feet wide and could be seen for 150 miles. About ten feet of the rocket are visually reconstructed in the exhibit, and it is amazing to point to the diagram and indicate to kids how little they're actually seeing. Oh yeah, the Apollo computers? They had .02 megs of RAM--my watch computer is more powerful!
Inside the exhibit are (oh yeah, all this has been about the Space: A Journey to Our Future exhibit that I'm now working post-Monkey King ;-)) three scales--one to show weight on Earth (1 g), one for the moon (about 1/6 g), and one for Mars (about 1/3 g). Women who don't like their earth weight seem to strangely enjoy the Mars and moon scales. You can also look up at one point and see a full-size replica of Sputnik, pretty small by modern standards, but it did so much!
So did I mention the moon rock? Yeah, it is really cool (except that for some reason they're convinced it is between, and please don't laugh, 3.3 and 3.5 billion years old *sigh*) and there are only about 1,400 of them on earth. You can't touch it, but you can touch a lunar meteorite from Libya (discovered 1998) that scientists say is made up of the same stuff and thus must have come from the moon in the past. Oh yeah, and one of the staff is with the rock at all times--NASA takes its security very seriously--nothing is going anywhere they don't want it to. Obviously I can't get into any particulars, but everything is quite safe.
Several other artifacts are quite interesting including an Apollo fuel cell, a lunar rover tire, tiles from Columbia (removed after flight in 1981, not from the 2003 crash), and a few other things I can't recall at the moment. :-) It was fascinating to read that the space shuttle tiles are derived from common sand and baked in the world's largest microwave before being fused in a giant oven. The black tiles on the underside of the shuttle protect it from temperatures up to 2,300 degrees!! Kids get wide-eyed when I remind them that water boils at 212 degrees and paper burns at 451 degrees. By comparison the white tiles on the top of the shuttle only get up to 1,200 degrees.
Oh, as a minor sidenote I should probably mention that I'm enjoying a very delicious snack of a bagel smothered with cream cheese. Why in the heck didn't I eat cream cheese as a kid? It is delicious!!! Eh, whatever, back to space.
Between the moon rock and the Mars area are two cool displays (as well as extensive signage): one about various satellites (all Lockheed Martin birds--they're a major exhibit sponsor) and deep space probes (like the Voyager missions). Once you get to the end area there are several touch screen computers where you can design a spacecraft for travel to various locations (the Moon, Mars, Jupiter, Alpha Centauri), decide what to pack for the trip to Mars, and assemble a Mars Base Camp--then you can go inside what part of a Mars Base camp could look like, "reconstructed."
But before these computers you'll see an infrared camera hooked up to a widescreen television. It is so much fun to look at yourself on the screen and see what areas are hot, and which cool. I can leave heat handprints on my shirt or even on the top of my head. And kids with sandals can remove them and see heat remants of their footprints on the floor as they walk. It is great to watch the kids having fun. Right next to the camera are the spacebikes.
Now these, well here is how the website describes them: " Take a spin on a centrifuge that you power like a bicycle." Now you don't actually power them with your pedaling, but astronauts could some day. There are three seats which you lay back in, and then a set of bicycle pedals for each seat. Astronauts lose strength in their muscles the whole time they're in "micro-gravity) and so they must exercise extensively (hence the bicycle pedals). However they also lose bone mass because of calcium leaching out of their bones (due to the lack of gravity) and the idea is that the cetrifuge spinning would help to replicate gravity as astronauts exercised for at least an hour per day. The kids love the experience and *grumble* never get dizzy! (Some aspects of youth are wasted on the youth) A number of adults also ride, and I've only had a couple ask for it to end early.
Well I think that is enough about the museum, now more about the rest of life. There are a few of you (I know exactly who you are) that have e-mailed me and not recieved a response (or sent a PM on Section 77). Right now (for no good reason really) I've just been retreating some what (part of the reason I didn't force myself to blog)--partly because at times I don't want to answer some questions or admit that I've put of answering some too long. I'll be getting on those soon.
The local library is awesome, right Mark? :-) They have a summer reading program--one for kids, one for teens, and one for adults. The kids get guaranteed prizes--but I might as well. For each book an adult reads between June 1st and August 31st they're entitled to fill out one raffle ticket. I figure that with as many books as I read (especially with all my time in at work) I'm bound have a good chance! Finally a lottery where I naturally increase the odds by enjoying life!
Speaking of books I'm really looking forward to this Saturday. Both Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble are advertising that all Harry Potter books ordered before Monday will arive on Saturday or (according to Amazon, I don't remembe if BN made the same surety) they're free! I ordered my copy a while back from BN (using my small AAA discount) so I'd better be counted there as well.
Well though this is a record making length post for me (and I'm sure I could think of more to type) I'm somewhat burned out by typing right now. :-) Oh, and I'd like to do a spot of reading before I sleep. Technically I'm currently in the middle of six different books. *sigh* No, that is a good thing! I just wish I could keep track of more at once!!
Well this last item I had planned to open with, but I'll close with it instead. Thanks to Billy for bringing this to my attention. Now I did make sure to check this out before I post it, ;-). I used my favourite site, Truth or Fiction, and they verified (as did another such site) that it is indeed correct--except that the comments were widely reported in the media. These are the comments by the judge in the case of the convicted "shoe bomber" terrorist Richard Reid:
Ruling by Judge William Young
U.S. District Court Judge William Young made the following statement in sentencing "shoe bomber" Richard Reid to prison. It is noteworthy, and deserves to be remembered far longer than he predicts. I commend it to you and to anyone you might wish to forward it to.
January 30, 2003 United States vs. Reid. Judge Young: Mr. Richard C. Reid, hearken now to the sentence the Court imposes upon you.
On counts 1, 5 and 6 the Court sentences you to life in prison in the custody of the United States Attorney General.
On counts 2, 3, 4 and 7, the Court sentences you to 20 years in prison on each count, the sentence on each count to run consecutive with the other. That's 80 years.
On count 8 the Court sentences you to the mandatory 30 years consecutive to the 80 years just imposed. The Court imposes upon you each of the eight counts a fine of $250,000 for the aggregate fine of $2 million.
The Court accepts the government's recommendation with respect to restitution and orders restitution in the amount of $298.17 to Andre Bousquet and $5,784 to American Airlines.
The Court imposes upon you the $800 special assessment.
The Court imposes upon you five years supervised release simply because the law requires it. But the life sentences are real life sentences so I need go no further.
This is the sentence that is provided for by our statues. It is a fair and just sentence. It is a righteous sentence. Let me explain this to you.
We are not afraid of any of your terrorist co-conspirators, Mr. Reid. We are Americans. We have been through the fire before. There is all too much war talk here. And I say that to everyone with the utmost respect.
Here in this court, where we deal with individuals as individuals, and care for individuals as individuals, as human beings we reach out for justice, you are not an enemy combatant. You are a terrorist. You are not a soldier in any war. You are a terrorist. To give you that reference, to call you a soldier gives you far too much stature. Whether it is the officers of government who do it or your attorney who does it, or that happens to be your view, you are a terrorist.
And we do not negotiate with terrorists. We do not treat with terrorists. We do not sign documents with terrorists. We hunt them down one by one and bring them to justice.
So war talk is way out of line in this court. You are a big fellow. But you are not that big. You're no warrior. I know warriors. You are a terrorist. A species of criminal guilty of multiple attempted murders.
In a very real sense Trooper Santigo had it right when you first were taken off that plane and into custody and you wondered where the press and where the TV crews were and he said you're no big deal. You're no big deal.
What your counsel, what your able counsel and what the equally able United States attorneys have grappled with and what I have as honestly as I know how tried to grapple with, is why you did something so horrific. What was it that led you here to this courtroom today? I have listened respectfully to what you have to say. And I ask you to search your heart and ask yourself what sort of unfathomable hate led you to do what you are guilty and admit you are guilty of doing. And I have an answer for you. It may not satisfy you. But as I search this entire record it comes as close to understanding as I know.
It seems to me you hate the one thing that is most precious. You hate our freedom. Our individual freedom. Our individual freedom to live as we choose, to come and go as we choose, to believe or not believe as we individually choose.
Here, in this society, the very winds carry freedom. They carry it everywhere from sea to shining sea. It is because we prize individual freedom so much that you are here in this beautiful courtroom. So that everyone can see, truly see that justice is administered fairly, individually, and discretely.
It is for freedom's sake that your lawyers are striving so vigorously on your behalf and have filed appeals, will go on in their, their representation of you before other judges. We are about it. Because we all know that the way we treat you, Mr. Reid, is the measure of our own liberties. Make no mistake though. It is yet true that we will bear any burden, pay any price, to preserve our freedoms.
Look around this courtroom. Mark it well. The world is not going to long remember what you or I say here. Day after tomorrow it will be forgotten. But this, however, will long endure. Here in this courtroom and courtrooms all across America, the American people will gather to see that justice,individual justice, justice, not war, individual justice is in fact being done.
The very President of the United States through his officers will have to come into courtrooms and lay out evidence on which specific matters can be judged, and juries of citizens will gather to sit and judge that evidence democratically, to mold and shape and refine our sense of justice.
See that flag, Mr. Reid? That's the flag of the United States of America. That flag will fly there long after this is all forgotten. That flag stands for freedom. You know it always will.
Custody Mr. Officer. Stand him down.
So much better than all those other internet rumours because it is actually true, and it so well reflects what America should be all about! By the way, I should also like to take this opportunity to remember all those who died in London--I hope it will strengthen our resolve in the War on Terror (and more importantly open up the doors for more to be saved in England and wherever they've heard about this).
So long, farewell, and thanks for the fish. I hope to update soon.
Oh yeah, and if you haven't done so already please check out the Superheroes and Villians story. It is being cooperatively written by myself and a group of friends (overseen by Jeremiah)--I think you might enjoy it!
Oh, this is an addendum added after I read Jeremiah's last Private Message at Section 77. It is quite quiet without all the little kids running about. Things are a bit messy because the boys don't pick anything up (but I've also not been picking the papers up, they're laying around unred because I don't have time in the morning to get them before I leave). Tonight I did what I've done a couple other times--not wanting to spend all my time at home I took off for the library after dinner and spent several hours just sitting and reading. It is nice to be around people, even if I don't know them or talk to them I'm at least just not sitting in an empty, or nearly empty house reading, I'm somewhere where others are.