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2004-01-17 - 6:21 p.m.

I should probably finish writing about the college trip experience before I forget it all.

In Dayton, I spent a day playing Scrabble and Trivial Pursuit. Josh and I went over to his friend's house, whose name I have forgotten, and had dinner. They played with the chess set made of shot glasses I had bought Josh for Christmas. Josh and I played ourselves, and after winning the first game I subsequently lost around 4. The thing about a chess set made of shot glasses is that when you lose, you don't just lose, you get drunk, which makes it harder to win the next game. Every winning game is an advantage. We only played with shots of beer, but I still got pretty drunk. I think Josh kissed me goodnight. I can't remember. Men!

We also spent a day in Columbus, Josh driving around and showing me the Ohio State campus. Columbus is a huge city, and it looks like a lot of fun to live in. We went to a place that looks like an old fashioned town but is just pretend, with a bunch of trendy shops. It was a lot of fun to walk around and window shop, and kill a few hours. Not to mention the huge 2 story Barnes & Noble. There was a video game controller set for sale in this mock town that had 100,000 video games programmed into the controller. All you had to do was plug it into the television. At the time I couldn't justify spending the $59.95, and even though I knew I would always regret not buying it, I still didn't. One of the first games in the controller was Paperboy! One of my old favorite games.

We met up with a friend of his, whose name I have also forgotten, and his fiance. We ate lunch/dinner at this mock town, and I remember the onion rings. They were all stuck together and I had to pick them all up at once and eat bites out of it, like an onion ring sandwich.

What does that say about me, that I can remember the onion ring sandwich so clearly, but not the names of the people I ate with?

We saw Paycheck that night, the only movie we could all agree on. It made me think of the current war on terror, and how we perhaps are creating our own future: by trying to prevent war, we bring war on ourselves. I give it 2 and a half stars because of the way it reflected on the current state of affairs in such a roundabout manner, whether intentional or not. Otherwise it would only have been two stars. I don't care for Ben Affleck or Uma Thurman as thespians all that much, but I liked how the guy who played Harvey Pekar was in it.

Josh's parents are really nice people. We also ate at his grandma's house one day for lunch, and they were all nice people too. His grandma's chicken and dumplings soup was damn good. I just remembered that now.

The trip was a lot of fun, and I feel that Josh and I get along well enough to possibly be roommates in the future. That's the kind of situation where problems don't become readily apparent until you're actually in the situation though. Like getting married for example. But I think Josh and I could pull off the whole roommates thing. I just have to finish that damn Ohio State application. I'm such a lazy bastard. At least I have a much better shot of getting into Ohio State than I do the University of Michigan.

Speaking of Michigan, I drove up there and killed time until Emily got out of class. I was really surprised that she'd let me stay with her, after being told that I wasn't her friend anymore and that because I lied to her about New Years by not telling her about our change of plans our friendship has been severely damaged, etc. etc. But she found it in her heart to let me stay with her. She never mentioned anything, and I didn't either, as is typical of me. We played Scrabble and put together an armoire, and I also met some of her friends who live in Ann Arbor. I think the town of Ann Arbor suits me better; lots of hippies seem to live there. (I know Josh will like that comparison.) But the town seems so unforgiving. Lots of one way streets, and I was told during my tour that most of Ann Arbor's revenue comes from parking tickets. Parking tickets?!

In the end, I think I'm going to choose which college I go to based on which one gives me more money. If I don't get any scholarships, I'm basically fucked. Columbus seems cheaper overall, but Ann Arbor seems a lot less crime ridden. Columbus is a lot bigger, and all the people I met there were so nice. And of course there's the whole roommate situation, which looks a lot more favorable in Ohio. I think the University of Michigan is a better school overall, although I don't think that matters since I believe you can get a good education anywhere.

Of course, none of this will matter if I don't get that damn Ohio State application in.

On the way home, I stopped in a small town in Indiana, about 45 miles outside of Chicago, which is where Donald lives. We met at Barnes & Noble, and drove back to his place, and went out to eat at a local bar and grill. And what a fabulous, American place! I had a burger and a beer, and some Mountain Dew and I think some onion rings, and we watched a football playoff game on the big screen TV. His mom and mom's boyfriend (who also lives with her, so for all intents and purposes, husband) joined us, and we all chatted and watched the game together. Normally I wouldn't make the distinction of it being an American place, except for the fact that I distinctly remember looking around at all the people drinking beers and having burgers, and looking at my own beer and burger, and all of us watching the game at this local bar and grill and cheering the different plays, and thinking what a truly American experience I was having. I might trace that night back to the night I started watching football. It was a very fun game to watch, even for people like me, who have never cared about a game in their lives. The St. Louis Rams kicked off and the ball took a weird bounce, and the kicker ended up catching his own ball. It went into overtime, and both teams missed a field goal to win it. It was all very exciting, even more so since I realized it was the first time I had so much fun watching a football game. The Ohio State vs. Michigan game I watched earlier this year doesn't count, since I was enjoying the company and not the game.

After losing a few games of chess to Donald, I drove home the following day.

It was a good trip. I'm really, really glad I went to Ohio, since I had been debating whether or not I should go.

It has also not escaped my mind that Ohio is about 4 to 5 hours closer to Georgia. I just thought I'd throw that in there for future reference's sake.

Speaking of Jimmie, (was I? of course I was) I'm concerned about his health and the fact that the tumor in his leg had "fingers." The only thing I can really do is concentrate on the power of the positive thought. A person's will can be so strong; why aren't more people amazed by placebos? The mind is such an incredible thing. Of course, Jimmie's mind and will here is so much more important than my own, but I do what I can. I think that's one of the reasons that prayer works so well. I stole that idea from Cody.

Thursday night we all went out to dinner at Ichibans, a fancy Japanese steak house here in Minneapolis. By "we" I mean Uncle Phil, Dad, Aunt Mary, Mom, Hannah, Jacob, and myself, all around the table in that order. Hannah and I followed my dad and mom to go pick up Aunt Mary, and she talked while I listened about her and Jeffy breaking up. Break ups are always hard, but they've been dating since Jeffy was a sophmore in high school. He's a sophmore in college now. I can't imagine how difficult that would be. From what Hannah says, it's not like they don't love each other, but they need to see other people and be free for awhile, and they're not ruling out any possibilities for the future. I think she was glad that we still took her out to dinner, and I get the feeling that it meant a lot to her. Jacob and I might stay with her, if we go to Madison while Arne's here. That's where Jacob and Arne met, and Hannah has an apartment right on State Street, the main street in Madison. It would be a fun trip. Did I already write about this?

In any case, dinner was a lot of fun. We met Jacob and Phil at the restaurant. We had a lot of drinks. Jacob and I talked about I can't remember what, but we had a lot of laughs. It was a wonderful evening all around and we all had so much fun.

I cashed in some lottery tickets yesterday that totalled $115. I immediately walked over to the bank and deposited it. I also cashed a check for 17 cents that was sent to me by Bell South. I bet they thought I wouldn't cash it, but I did! Those suckers. I was talking to Jimmie about it, and now I kind of wish I had kept it just to show off how dumb companies can be. It cost them how much to send me that check? There's got to be a better way of bookkeeping.

Today, I went shopping with my mom at Southdale. I bought a bunch of casual business type clothes for my upcoming job. Buying clothes for a temp job may seem silly, but I'll be needing business clothes, or "nicer" clothes, in the future as well. No more army fatigues for me! I say "I bought clothes" but I should type "my mom bought clothes" since she paid for everything. Since I've been home I've had to come to terms with my parents paying for so much for me. I'm 24 and I've prided myself on being financially independent, and it's hard for me to feel like I'm taking a step back. But as my parents have explained to me, they aren't paying for things because I want them to or because I need them to, but because THEY want to. And I think they enjoy it because they haven't had much chance to these past 6 years, whereas my brother has been all kinds of expense to them. I don't mean this as a comparison between my brother and I but more as a way to illustrate that my parents really are happy to purchase me things, especially job related. Maybe I'm just trying to justify it to myself. In any case, $125 was spent on a lot of clothes; we got a hell of a good deal, and everything was at least 50% off. It was fun spending the day shopping with my mom; I can't remember the last time we've done that together.

Tonight I saw the movie The Cooler with my parents. I didn't care for it too much. I was saying to Emily earlier (who happens to be online) that I might be missing something, but I think that Macy plays the same character in every movie: some form of loser. He'll probably win an award for the Cooler, and like every year when I see who gets the Academy Awards, I'll think, "...the hell?" Everyone's a critic though, and this critic gives The Cooler a rating of 2 stars.

Ahhh... I guess that's everything I've been wanting to write down these last few days or less.

If anyone is feeling charitable, to include my future self, please go to It is such important work.

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