The other day I went to "Panda Express" for dinner. There were mostly men and women of Latin American ancestory working behind the counter. There was a man of Eastern Asian origins behind me in line.
It took 10 minutes of broken English (on both sides of the conversation) to get that man a to-go box of Chicken Fried rice. After it was all said and done, my friends and I shared a good laugh. From a strictly linguistics perspective, the fact that a (presumably) Chinese man can't order "Chinese" food from a (presumably) Mexican man in America because both have a limited grasp on the English language is hilarious!
*Important Note* This is not meant to come off as condescending, bigotous, or mean. It was just a really funny, SNL-esque situation I wanted to share...
Here's what promises to be a significant posting...
MacBook Pro My Macbook Pro is one of the greatest purchases I have ever made. Finally giving into my younger brother's persistant nagging, after I got to my current station post-Basic, I dove headfirst into the glorious Mac subculture.
My initial elf-justification came from the full support of BootCamp, and the ability to flawlessly install Windows. However, until I recently installed a Beta of Windows 7 (a review for a later date), there hadn't been a copy of a Windows OS on my laptop for at least 8 months. Most of the gaming I do now is on the PS3 or PSP, so there's not really a need for me to use Windows for anything. I've got copies of the necessary Office software, I use superior video software, and OSX is much easier to use than XP (and of course, the steaming pile of freshman-level programming garbage that it Vista).
I do have a few issues with my MacBook Pro. I don't understand the obsession with shiny coatings for electronics (be it the Mac's shiny-silver, or the PS3's Piano Black), but if it gets used, it scratches. I wish the coating was of a different texture. The bottom is scratched much more than it should be for as young as the computer still is, though I have managed to avoid messing up the top, keyboard, or palm-rests by using a cheap-external keyboard and mouse.
The only other problem I occasionally run into is a compatability issue with OSX, but only with open-source and shareware programs.
Oh, and it runs Windows 7 almost flawlessly so far...having some trouble with the sound, but I'm not concerned as I haven't spent a great deal of time trying to figure it out yet.
Hands down, if you can afford one, buy one.
Sony Playstation 3
My PS3 is a beast. I was a little reluctant to get one for a long time because of the significant differences in quality and size of its game library when compared specifically to te XBox 360. However, I have had such success with my PSP that I decided to drop some money down and give it a try. I managed to snag one of the last models with 4 USB ports, card-slots, and (most importantly) PS2 backwards compatibility. It has an 80 GB hard drive and came with a copy of Metal Gear Solid 4. I have not regretted the purchase for a second.
The backwards compatability works incredibly well. It's a shame they have since removed it.
My initial worries about the game library were quickly put to rest. Sony's exclusives are top-notch. MGS4, Uncharted: Drakes Fortune, and LittleBigPlanet are each by themselves more than enough reason to buy a PS3. Their combined level of fun, innovation, and general "awesomeness" is explosive particularly LittleBigPlanet.
I actually use the PS3's media center functionality more than the gaming. The USB ports and DivX/XviD codecs make watching the mountain of TV shows I have on portable HD a snap...a little more compatability on the file extension side of things would e nice, but for the most part, I've not had any major issues. Also of course, the BluRay player works perfectly fine and supports all the necessities like BDLive and whatnot.
I recently picked up a nice 40in LCD 1080p TV and barebones Sony 5.1 sound system to complete my HD experience, and I have not been disappointed. For anyone still settling for standard definition and trying to pass it off as, "There's no difference!", I have but one word for you, "WRONG!"
HD even in 720p brings in a crystal clear picture, and true 5.1 Dolby Digital sound is glorious...Do it! Make the switch! The end of SD is near, and you are being left in the dark...Search your feelings! You know it to be true!
That's all I got. Man, it feels good to be doing this again. I miss writing...Maybe I'll revisit my story blog too...if I can find the time...
So, it's been over a year...but I think it's time to bring this back...
Here's a summary of what's been happening: Army Stuff- I graduated with High PT Score for my Basic Training Company (325 with the extended scale!); my platoon won the Honor Platoon award as well. I loved my Drill Sergeants and made some really good friends, one of whom followed me out to my next station.
I'm currently on my Unit's Run Team, and I've gotten my 2 miles time down to sub-twelve minutes which is very awesome...My squad is also fantastic.
Politics- While I didn't vote for Obama, his policies so far have been pretty good. Not too terribly excited about his cabinet members, but I do approve of his appreciation for technology. Choosing an "internet czar" that actually understands what the internet is (and plays WoW) was a much-needed step in the proper direction. Also, I bought a MacBook Pro (I'll post a review of sorts later...) a while back...Obama's apparently a Mac user...I approve. All kidding aside (and most importantly of all given the current political climate of the world) the Middle East loves Obama (because most of them think he's a Muslim), and that has the potential to make my life easier for the next few years...
Technology- I already mentioned that I bought a MacBook Pro...I've also managed to acquire a 40in toshiba LCD 1080p TV, a Sony 5.1 barebones sound system, and a PS3...I love all of them (many thanks to the floundering Circuit City and their ridiculously low prices!) More reviews to follow...