Stuff I Know

Just stuff by me about me and my life, such as it is.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

For Fun and Profit

In reality there is very little profit in it, but one of the things I do online is enter sweepstakes. When you have a broadband connection, you have to do something with that data pipe, and one person can only download so much porn entertainment.

Almost everyday I enter sweepstakes on the Internet. It is really easy to do. Just point, click, fill in a little information, being sure to uncheck all those boxes that say you want to receive lots of SPAM information, and you have just as much chance as anyone else to win a car, money, T-shirts, electronic gadgets, or any number of other possible prizes. Sometimes, if the prize is interesting, I enter some sweepstakes daily, if allowed.

You might be saying that it is all a waste of time, since, considering the odds, it is so difficult to actually win something. True, the prizes are few and far between, and the good prizes are even rarer, but I don't really look at it as an investment. For me, and for many people, entering sweepstakes is more of a hobby. A hobby that will occasionally net you a little bonus now and then. It is just like a person who collects comic books or figurines. Primarily those people aren't doing it for the potential profit. They are in it for the entertainment value, and hey, if one of those Superman comic books or crying clown statuettes turns out to be worth more money than you paid for it, then it is all gravy.

As a plus, entering sweepstakes means there are no items to store anywhere. And since I am already paying for the Internet connection, there is no added cost. All it takes is a little time. Besides, the odds are a lot better, and the cost is a lot cheaper than dropping money down the state lottery toilet every month.

I just entered a contest the other day. The prize is nothing amazing, just a trip, a little money, and a copy of a new video game for the PSP. What is interesting is that this particular sweepstakes has kind of a viral marketing campaign associated with it. Since I have entered, I can post a link on my site that lets others enter the game too. When they enter it gives me an extra entry in the sweepstakes. I don't know how deep the referrals go, but it whole concept is kind of nice. Once I get "infected" (enter the game), I can get others "infected" and they can "infect" others, etc., etc. It fits very well with the theme of the game. I commend the marketing person who adapted this program to their sweepstakes.

So anyway, if you want to enter the contest for the new game, INFECTED - for the PSP from Planet Moon Studios, just click the link or the image above. I would be ever so grateful. If you happen to win, be sure to let me know.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

A New Ride

It is getting colder, but I still go riding if I can. Last Sunday's(20th) ride was a bit of an adventure. I had really just planned on riding out to Yecheon (예천) and then riding back, mostly along the same route. Turns out I ended up making a rather large loop, about 85 km. or so.

When looking at the map before setting out, I assumed I could probably cut back south after riding northeast for a bit. Unfortunately, on the tourist map that I have, the mountains don't really show up very well. Out on the road there are a lot of hills and canyons and you can't really tell which way all the small little roads would head. In fact, a lot of the little roads end up going into a valley and then dead ending. Then you have to backtrack your way out to main road again. This was my first time in this area so I didn't want to spend too much time backtracking.

After reaching Yecheon I followed the largest road towards the north. I was looking for a good opportunity to turn back south, but I never found one. After a while, I just decided it would be easier to continue on to Yeongju (영주) since I knew the way home from there. But Yeongju was still over 30 km. from home. I had set out early, but it was getting late. It was dark when I rolled into Andong. I almost got smashed onto the pavement twice in the dark, but I made it home OK. I have a light on my bike, but drivers here just don't bother to look unless you are another car.

The colors on the route show the relative elevation. The red is the highest part, as you can see, when I was crossing from one river valley into another.
Here is a part of the elevation profile from the ride. It runs across the highest point. The colors here represent my speed. Obviously blue is the slowest when I was going up hill. The downhill part sure was fun.

I will add this ride and some others to the previous ones and then post a new compilation photo from Google Earth along with a new kmz file.


Wednesday, November 16, 2005

On Mortality

Mark this date on your calendar:

Tuesday, July 28, 2037

You might want to have a party or something. Unfortunately I won't be able to attend, for, you see, that will be the date of my death. Or at least that is what the folks at calculate as my death. Let's see, pulling out the 'ole calculator, that would give me just about four months shy of 74 years of age.

Seventy-four is not a bad number. It would be nice to make it to 75 and celebrate three quarters of a century, but, considering that I could be splattered on the street any day here in Korea while crossing a road or riding my bike (I'll save the Korean traffic rant for another time.), I'll take as much time as I can get. It is a good thing I don't smoke. That would kill me seven years earlier.

Let's see, that gives me about thirty-two more years to play with. Well I still haven't cured cancer, ended hunger, or brought about world peace yet, so I guess I had better get working on those. I wonder if I'll be able to see my children or grandchildren walk on the moon or Mars. Who's kidding who. I'll be lucky if I even have a wife or kids by then. There is no official agenda, but a family would be nice. There are still a lot of places I would like to visit, and that "great American novel" isn't going to write itself. It often seems there is so much to do, but so little time to do it. And then you realize you've just wasted fifteen minutes or more reading someone's blog. Well, as Bertrand Russell once said, "The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time."

Here is another important day. Sometime on May 24, 2006 I will only have exactly one billion (1,000,000,000) seconds left to live.
"Time is swift, it races by; Opportunities are born and die... Still you wait and will not try - A bird with wings who dares not rise and fly."
~ A. A. Milne

"The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time."
~ Mark Twain

"Live life so completely that when death comes to you like a thief in the night, there will be nothing left for him to steal."
~ Unknown

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Photos from Jirye

I posted some photos over on my photo blog. These are from a long ride out to the Artists Colony at Jirye. The ride back up from the lake is a heck of a long hill climb. Along the way, the scenery is really nice. I was there at the end of winter, but I could see where it would be even nicer in spring or summer. Maybe I'll go back one day. For now, click on the photo and go have a look. Tell me what you think if you have some time.

Labels: ,

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Friends and Stuff

A friend, Misun Han (pronounced 'me-soon', no I don't understand it either), came down to Andong for the annual Andong Mask Dance Festival.

The mask dance is a cultural thing fairly unique to this area. It is basically a storytelling/play put on by villagers wearing different masks to represent the individual characters in the drama. It can be kind of interesting. The city of Andong has created a whole festival out of this item by inviting other countries to come and perform their own traditional dances. Additionally there are booths with crafts, people selling things, other performances to watch, games to play and food to eat. It is a week long affair that brings in lots of tourists from Korean and abroad. It can be pretty interesting and occasionally fun.

Anyway, Misun came down and we wandered around the festival. The next day we went out to Hahoe village, a traditional Korean village, to look around and see some more performances. While at Hahoe I took a few pictures. I recently put most of those pictures up in my Flicker account for Misun to see. I though I would also let you have a chance to see the photos, too. If you are interested, click the image below to go to my Flickr account and just click forward through the images (if you go backward, you'll see a few older photos).

She is kind of pretty, isn't she. And hey guys, she's not an air head, and she's still single.

"A stranger is just a friend I haven't met yet."
~ Will Rogers

"A true friend is one who knows all about you and likes you anyway."
~ Cristi Mary Warner

"Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life."
~ Mark Twain

Labels: ,