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Life

Drew Garrison

February 26, 2007

It took me 5 years, but I am finally drawing near to the end of my college experience. I thought I would never see this day. The odds were against me due to the fact that my parents never went to college. My dad went straight into the Little Rock Police Department when he was 18 and my mom went to nursing school to become an RN. ...

Hustle and “No”

Dawan Morgan

February 19, 2007

Last night I watched Terence Howard's first starring role in Hustle and Flow. I'm very impressed and very disappointed at the same time. I'm impressed in Terence Howards performance in this film. He plays a character so well that you forget its Terence Howard. In my opinion, that's when a person is a good actor. When actors ca...

What is and what should never be

Mitchell Allgood

February 19, 2007

I want to clear the air about my feelings concerning the Clean Air Act, banning smoking from all indoor establishments whose clientele is not 21-and-over. Fine, I bear no grudge with this, as surprising as that may seem. I understand the dangers of second-hand smoke, especially in an indoor environment with little circulatio...

Plumber’s Butt University

Dawan Morgan

February 12, 2007

Over the course of the two decades of my life, I've seen many different fashion statements. Fashion is something that changes almost every second. Sagging pants, ripped pants, baggy pants and even camouflage pants were fashionable at one time. But have we now reached the point where having your ass hanging out is fashionable? It's n...

The European

Ross Ellis

February 12, 2007

As Rob became more involved in the pub and night life he continued to pursue the life of a footballer -- like all men strive to become. Working for the factory and visiting the pub every day while fitting football practice became a hard task for Bob. It took a toll on his body and it began to get monotonous wearing down on him like a dusty wind on a rock in the desert. He started to spend more of his time thinking of his future and where he felt that he needed to be. He thought to himself that it wasn't enough working a dead end job in a factory doing that awful job for the rest of his life. Bob began to think of ways he could earn money without doing much work for it. His uncle, a very smart but also very deceitful, would give Bob thoughts of how to pull off schemes that would make money fast and easy. These things consisted of going to England, dressing up in several layers of clothes to add weight to their appearance, color their skin black to conceal their true skin color, then robbing a booky and taking all the money that had been bet earlier that day. Another scheme was to set up a phone line much like a 1-800 number with a made-up name and information. When you call these numbers you have to pay for the phone call. After that was set up they would dress like mail carriers and go to different business buildings acting as if they were delivering a package. When they would get to the office of the business they would ask the secretary if there was a package that was supposed to be sent to this address for another address. When the secretary would say no the impersonator of the mail carrier would ask to use the phone and call this set up number. When they would use the businesses phone to call the fake phone line it would rack up a big phone bill and pay the phony phone line and the cons would drop the phone line and move on to the next area. Bob realized how much work that would take and thought to himself that it wasn't worth it. He began to think of more practical things he could do with his life. A very far off idea popped into his head: America.

Achilles’s Last Stand

Mitchell Allgood

February 12, 2007

How many times has this happened to you: You are minding your own business, driving your 18-wheeler, going on three months now of a crank induced stupor with no sleep, and it hits you -- you never really cared for Albuquerque, New Mexico, and have finally decided to do something about it. For 28 year old Eric Dubach, of Mount ...

The European 2

Ross Ellis

February 12, 2007

Bob was still enslaved by the work that his father had so generously lured him into when he was younger, but now he could actually think for himself. He wanted new things, a better place where he felt like he was accomplishing something. With much time to think while working in the factory, Bob thought of many opportunities that wou...

Disfunction Junction

Marie Martin

February 5, 2007

Tonight, Dorothy Sheedy died. Dorothy was an evangelical Christian who had the bumper sticker, "I brake for the rapture," on her car. Unfortunately, this was her undoing. She saw blow-up dolls floating into the sky and immediately screeched on her brakes. Thinking the dolls were people floating up for the rapture, she darted fro...

Snow

Morris Hardiman

February 5, 2007

It's nice to finally have some snow. Maybe I won't have to go to classes tomorrow. I was a little late for work today. I'm at work now, just sitting here. Nobody is here. It's just me and the snow. I'm not a big snow guy, though. I don't go playing in the snow like it's just something to do. But it always looks nice. I'm mo...

Dissenter’s Corner

Josh James

February 5, 2007

Unsatisfied with my initial blog submission, I reflected upon it over a cold beer and the television. I was unsatisfied; A) because I limited myself to one subject, and B) because I made some claims without giving support. Just then, in the blink of an eye, redemption appeared in the form of a CNN breaking story. Apparently (and ...

The Unseen World

Mike Taylor

February 5, 2007

OK, so last week I launched "The Unseen World," a blog dedicated to things microbial. I sung the praises of the infinitesimal beasties that inhabit our planet and our bodies, and promised the they would bring great things. But just as I was getting ready to type the second installment, they brought something unexpected: the common cold. I'm sitting here in the middle of the night, too stopped up to sleep, loaded with zinc and vitamin C, purely medicinal Jameson's at my elbow, because I have been brought down by teeny tiny things. Not, you'll notice I didn't say, by teeny tiny life forms. That's because the common cold is carried by viruses, and viruses are not, technically speaking, a life form. They are microbial, meaning you can only see them through microscopes. Actually, you can't even see them through optical microscopes, because they are smaller than the wavelength of visible light (the stuff you are reading this by), meaning they are for all practical purposes invisible. No matter how big you blow up a picture of a virus, it is smaller than the light we see by. But we have a good idea of what a virus would look like if it were visible because electron microscopes shoot beams that have a much smaller wavelength than visible light, giving us a sort of phantom video of viruses. Viruses are fascinating microbes, but, as I say, every one of them is deader than Richard Nixon. Nixon, it can be argued, was alive once. Not so the virus, which is a little loop of malicious biological software that at some point long ago burst loose from a living cell, leading theory has it, to wreak havoc. All a virus can do is invade other cells, hijack the cellular machinery of reproduction, and make copies of itself. Computer viruses are excellent conceptual models of the real thing, because both depend on a much larger, more complicated host (you, your computer) and both are things we can't ever hope to truly see that can cause us all sorts of irritation. But neither is alive. Living things, like a strep infection or your little sister, consume food, reproduce, grow old, and ultimately die. Not so the viruses, which make copies of themselves, and nothing else. But that process of borrowing your cells for copying purposes can make you feel pretty miserable, I'm here to tell you. Some of the smallest and most interesting viruses are called bacteriophages. As the name suggests, they attack only bacteria, breaking through the cell wall and taking over the bacterial photocopying systems, to make so many little copies of themselves that the poor bacteria burst apart at the seems. Phages, as they are called for short, look really cool in an electron microscope. They resemble nothing so much as the lunar lander of NASA's Apollo missions. When the little geometric payload of Phage touches down on a bacterial cell wall, the legs fold up and it launches a nasty surprise: a set of genetic instructions injected through the cell wall, straight to the heart of the cell. In nature these instructions boil down to two words: make copies. Phages, it turns out, are useful tools for people who would like to harness bacterial machinery for their own purposes, such as creating new species of corn or mice. How they do that is a subject for my next installment. Other viruses, much more complex than phages, are busy making copies in untold billions all over my upper respiratory tract, at the expense of the cells they have invaded. Although invaded is a poor word, as it implies life, even intelligence, and these are just fascinating little machines of protein and goo. But I digress. For now, I'm going to set aside the medicinal Jameson's, chug some more OJ, and try to get some sleep, despite my scratchy throat and stopped up nose. Dang microbes.

No Quarter

Mitchell Allgood

February 5, 2007

There are few things in life that are as frequently overlooked as driving. I know the resources are available, and between driver's education and the information booklets, you would think at least half of the population could drive - and you would, of course, be wrong. Everyone has had encounters with pricks who don't see any...

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