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Mon, Mar 05, 2001 08:16PM -0600

Oh what a waste of a weekend. Well, at least the hard drive recovery part of it. It would've been pretty good if I didn't wipe out a good part of my hard drive.

On Friday, I went with a bunch of people to this Mongolian Beef Barbeque place in Vernon Hills. It was very bizarre, mostly because there were like no Asians working there or eating there besides us, and I think some of the people working there were straight up on drugs. But, hey, we're in the Midwest. The design of the restaurant was very noveau-something-er-other. Well, it was very globalistic-neo-corporatic-post-post-modern. Or something like that. In any case, it was a bad time to go, since I was nominally observing Lent like the good Catholic that I am. Hah.

Let me tell you, I think eating extraordinarily spicy food can make you high or something. My first attempt at a masterful creation came up short, with barely any flavor, so on my second try, I added some Cayenne pepper powder. I suppose it was just a little too much. I had some other people try it, and they figured it was inedible, but I kept going anyway, until the room started to implode and explode like I was watching a TV that someone was turning on and turning off repeatedly. I swear I could also hear the endolymph circulating in my cochlea. It sounds just like the ocean. So I was pretty spaced out for the rest of the evening. It made me think of that Simpson's episode where Homer eats a Guatemalan insanity pepper.

Afterwards, we played some Texas Hold'em. I lost $20. Lady Luck had turned her back on me that night. In one hand, a pair of threes were showing, and I had another three and some other crappy card. Still, I figured I could make it with a three-of-a-kind. Turns out another guy had the fourth three and another, better card. On another hand, three sevens were showing (yeah, I don't know what was going on either) and I had a pair in the hole, but somebody else had a better pair. The last big hand I lost I got fooled into folding on a three of a kind that would have won.

When I got home, that's when I accidentally erased my home directory on my hard drive. I spent most of Saturday and almost all of Sunday trying to recover. In the end, I just decided to give up. All I really lost were two weeks worth of e-mail, most of it disposable. Still, it was a pain in the ass. That's close to 48 hours of my life that I'll never get back. Aargh.

We actually played another night of poker on Saturday, where I won back some of my losses. On a practice hand of Pac-10, as me and my roommate were teaching the other guys some games to play, I managed to throw down a full house. I was afraid that that was all the luck I would have, but I got suddenly lucky halfway through the night. We pretty much played Hold'em, but we also played this Vietnamese game called Ka'te (or something like that) that involves six cards, following suit, and winning tricks. Maybe I'll explain it someday. I ended up being by $18. So I was pretty happy after that I guess.

But I think I came to some philosophical conclusions this weekend, and I'm still trying to sort out what this all means. I think I've affirmed my existentialist beliefs, and maybe I've given up hoping that I can reconcile it with the Catholic faith that I was raised with. All that really matters is now, I guess. It's like climbing a ladder where you have to attach the next rung up, and the lower rungs keep falling off, but sometimes you have to put the lower rungs back so that the whole thing doesn't tip over. Well, it was much clearer when I was driving. But I realize that I really don't believe in Fate (despite the title of this blog). Maybe it's all just a rationalization so that I can deal with the disappoints of my life better. Or maybe it's just the dualistic nature of existence. Both Fate and Free-Will co-exist in the microseconds before and after a decision. Yeah, it really is that ladder thing. I wish I could figure out how to do an animation of it. You sometimes find yourself reconstructing your past for the sole purpose of making sense of your present. Because how can you make a decision if your past (however illusory the past is) seems incoherent? That's when the idea of Fate steps in, I guess. And the moment of decision is the realm of Free-Will, I guess.

This sucks. Does existentialism have to be so damned lonely? Ah, f-ck it.

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