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Diary, February 2005


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Wednesday, February 2, 2005

Mysterious email

Today, I received the following mysterious email.

Hola, Kaylin!

that card jerry-built ready. how rate swept me merrily? successfully cotton ground that paste under hammer. he out-thought the living disgust on condition. gracefully. its complete sound besides voice, that typewrote hanging, hollow reaction. Vincent rebound some true plant. i proofread Saniya how gan it Alexander! it misdealt bitter circle, which lip-Read irritably... over card resent science, ticket outshone beside his brick excluding chemical muscle:

"what it sought her?"
"i underlet me simple."

living wing brick threw, i sawed far, monthly, noisily. she begot my public taste at their healthy death, which redid brightly. her great baby typeset at his block; sudden, opposite drain. natural work cent showed, they lent doubtfully, boastfully, sternly. we chose their cut double unlike this new atom, that fraughted cheerfully. its mixed wing crept like an boot; possible, warm push. where curve sank you rapidly? shrilly wave overate this idea against roof. i alighted this brown crowd minus discussion. more. i rebound our female children except their healthy spoon, which unmade tightly. it undrew our last chord during the thick iron, who out-thought sadly. he sneaked you female. Madisyn knew our shut direction. you sat Nikolas what swore them Preston! you alighted a living potato along some soft star, that retod lazily. his second doubt threw round some opinion; red, brown structure. healthy stone colony hurt, he struck shrilly, calmly, violently. some different degree drove except

they forewent their second print despite your quiet boot, who went safely. some second dictionary upset among her captain; feeble, round farm. fixed silver cloud got, they chose rightfully, recklessly, busily. a complex fowl slit plus some paste; old, responsible element. we shed that automatic care around that cheap lip, which frostbit poorly. it broadcasted them like. she rebound fertile argument, that spent annually...

stuck her blue ant,
Annabella CLARKE.

I really tried to grok this, but I became utterly confuced. It made me think about the Postmodernism Generator. It seems that the spam kings have not found the dada engine yet, otherwise they would have come up with something that makes more sense.

Popcorn machine

Today, Li-Xia bought a popcorn machine from the Aldi for € 9,99. When I came home, I immediately wanted to try it out. The little machine made quite a lot of noise, not really suitable for late at night when the kids are in bed. At the first attempt the corn did not want to pop. We tried again, and about half of them popped. They tasted okay. I decided to add some water with the popcorn and keep them for some days.

Go club

This evening, I went to the Go club to play Go. When I arrived, only Marcel and Rudi were there. On my suggestion, we analyzed a game that I played the ItsYourTurn. More people arrived and started playing. I played against Rudi. He was given nine handicap stones. I lost with 48, which according to Martijn, who had came to watch the game during the end game, was really not that bad. I should get 50 points komi as well. Then we watched the game between Marcel and Taco a little, until Marcel started to play against Rudi. I watched that game.


Thursday, February 3, 2005

JURI votes for restart

European Parliament JURI Committee votes for restart with massive majority. My faith in European democracy has been restored. I am happy that the activities of the European Council to get software patents in Europe have been cancelled, at least for the time being. I am especially happy about what is said in the following quote (italics mine):


Saturday, February 5, 2005

Going to the city

We went with four us to the city because their was a carnival parade in the city. Annabel was dressed up as a clown and Andy as Zorro. I bought a Sweex "ADSLANNEX-A" ADSL modem router with a 4 port switch. Yesterday evening, I spend some time to install a signal splitter for ADSL at home.

At the "De Slegte" bookshop I found two interesting books. One is the "Het Paleo Dieet" (The Origin Diet) by Elizabeth Somer about the diet that our ancestors ate. Quite interesting, because I see a lot of similarities with the diet I eat myself. The second is "De Tao van Christus" (The Jesus Sutras) by Martin Palmer, a book about Christian influences from the 7th to 11th century in central China. I paid for these books at 15:02.


Wednesday, February 9, 2005

Happy Chinese New Year

I almost forgot, but today is the first day of the year 4702, a rooster year, according to the Chinese calendar.


Sunday, February 13, 2005

Hail and (wet) snow

Today, we several times had some hail and (wet) snow. We have had quite a lot of rain in the past days.


Monday, February 14, 2005

In love with Li-Xia

In the past weekend, I have become very much in love with Li-Xia again. On Friday night we had a very good talk, which made both of us fall in love with each other again. We felt much like when we just started dating. This has surprised both of us, especially because we have been married for more than eleven years now.


Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Thinking without language

Sometimes, science comes up with "striking" conclusions, which to me have seemed obvious for a long time. An example of this is given in the article "Key to intelligence questioned", which tells that scientist have discovered that it has been discovered that patients who have lost the ability to understand grammar can still complete hard sums. Many people seem to think that we cannot think without language. For more than twenty years I have been convinced that most of the thinking I do is without language. For this reason I also think that subtitle of the book Blink should have been "The Power of Thinking Without Language" instead of "The Power of Thinking Without Thinking". For some reason it seems that many of the people who wrote about thinking in the past (and that includes many philosophers) had strong language abilities, and poorer math skills. This makes it not so strange that they arrived at the conclusion that human thinking is based on language skills. But I guess that many people with strong math skills already have known for a long time that this is wrong.


Thursday, February 17, 2005

Speckles of snow

The morning, I noticed some white patches on the roofs of the houses. Then I noticed some speckles of snow falling from the sky. Yesterday, there were also a few. This morning a little more, and the snow was also staying at some places/


Friday, February 18, 2005

Snow storm

This evening, when I was upstairs I noticed a large snow flake. When we were about ready to bring Andy to the weekend care just after dinner, it really started snowing. And it just kept on snowing big dry flakes while we drove there and the ground was quickly covered with a layer of snow. Because this was the first time Andy was going their we needed to talk through some things. He immediately seemed to feel at home. I was surprise that all the boys at the weekend care behaved quite nice, although all of them had some mental handicap. When we left about one hour later the snow had become wet, almost like rain. Very sticky snow covering all the road signs so that you could not read them anymore. We went to catch Annabel who had stayed with a friend in Hengelo for one night.


Saturday, February 19, 2005

New bike

Today, Li-Xia, Annabel and I went into the city on bike. My bike is falling apart. Last week I had to apply some more iron wire to keep all the parts together. I guess that my current bike, a Gazelle is about twelve years old. I wanted to look for a simple and reliable bike. It appears that nowadays almost all bikes have hand brakes and gears. There are only a few models left with reverse brakes and no gears, although these seem to be about a hunderd euro cheaper. At one shop we did see some Kronan bikes. This type of bike was first developed for the Swedish army. They are very reliable and easy to maintain, and have a unique "licence plate" on the back.

(follow-up)


Sunday, February 20, 2005

Ten years

Today it is 10 years ago that I started with this online diary.

More snow

When we went to get Andy this afternoon, it started to hail, and about half way the hail changed into snow. Just like last Friday we were again driving throught the snow. When we arrived the snowing had stopped, and the snow that was left on the ground disappeared quickly.


Monday, February 21, 2005

Snow in the night

When I had to go to the toilet at one o'clock, I noticed that it is was rather light outside. When I peeked through the curtains, I saw that everything was covered with a thin layer of snow. In the morning, it appeared that most of this snow had melted away. The small reading lamps that we bought last Saturday, work quite well.

Effect of education is small

According to the Statistics Netherlands, people with a university degree (Master degree) during their life time earn 3.5 times as much as people who only finished primary education, but due to all forms of taxes and benefits, this is reduced to only a factor two. (It would not surprise me if people with a higher education are less unemployed then those with almost no education.) The average netto income of those with a university degree is only 1.43 times the average netto income of all people. It seems after all that most people studied for the fun, not for becoming rich.


Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Again snow

This morning it was 0.3 degrees Celsius when I went outside at half past seven. Just before I arrived at my office I saw some white speckles fall from the sky. Now, almost an hour later the ground is being covered with snow.


Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Cracking sound of snow

When I looked outside this morning, the world was white. It was exactly zero degrees Celsius (according to our thermometer) when I went outside, and the snow was making a cracking sound under my feet. Yesterday, it kept on snowing on and off, but due to the relatively high temperature, most snow melted before the end of the day. It seems it will be the same story today.

Wedding

This afternoon, I went to the wedding of Joost and Suzanne. The wedding was held in the Hölterhof and was followed by a reception with English Tea. It was obvious that the couple was very much in love with each other. I have to admit that it was a very special wedding.

(follow-up)

Playing against Ton

This evening, I went to the Go club, and played two games against Ton. The first (with an eight stone handicap) I won because Ton resigned, the second (with a seven stone handicap) I lost because I resigned.


Thursday, February 24, 2005

Biking through the snow

This morning it was snowing while I bike to my office. Some snow stayed for a short time.


Friday, February 25, 2005

A little snow

This morning, we had some little snow again. This is one of the longest period of snowing we had in many years. But still it looks like many countries around us got much more snow.


Saturday, February 26, 2005

A beautiful Mind

Thursday evening, I finished reading A Beautiful Mind, a biography about the life of John Nash (Short autobiography for the Nobel price, his home page) written by Sylvia Nasar. On the back it says that "the book reads like a novel". Of course, I found the story of John Nash very interesting, but the book does not read like a novel, but more like a PhD-thesis, because almost every other sentense has a reference to a note. It contains many quotations of people around him, but not so many from John Nash himself. It looks like Nasar spend a large part of her time to collect all her notes, and then had to hurry to put it into a book. She organized her notes per topic, and so are the chapters of the book, each dealing with a single topic, and often not dealing with the events in chronological order. As someone else remarked (in a Amazon commentary) is that the book often deals more about the people around Nash then about Nash himself. Whole chapters are dedicated to back ground information. She would have do much better if she had written the story more like a novel and a large collection of appendices. My conclusion would be: Interesting story, bad book.


Sunday, February 27, 2005

Cold winds from the North

A high pressure system is developing in Central Europe, giving us cold winds from the North, which maked the temperature drop to about -2.2 degrees Celsius outside the window of our home this morning. Yesterday evening and during the night we had little snow and also in the afternoon there was some snowing for a few minutes. Really not enough for a nice layer of snow.


Monday, February 28, 2005

Very cold

This morning, our thermometer showed -4.8 degrees Celsius just outside the window of our house. It has been long ago that it has been that cold. I went outside without gloves to scratch the car, but I had to go inside after ten minutes, because my hands were starting to hurt.


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