Profile for Sir Motrax of Exile


Recent posts

Pages

AuthorRecent posts
4000 Members in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #59
I concur!
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
What Kinds of Girls do you Like? in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #116
You just can't get enough of your sport, Ian? IMAGE(What Kinds of Girls do you Like (5)_files/tongue.gif)

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
What Kinds of Girls do you Like? in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #112
Well, tea isn't so bad. But once you start eating crumpets... that's the point of no return.

Hammer, it looks really awful when you spell "intelligence" incorrectly. And it helps to drop the netslang and adhere to conventional grammar rules such as correct capitalization and punctuation. Spaces between words never obscured anything, and sentences look nicer when they have both a subject and a predicate.

I miss the scythe... IMAGE(What Kinds of Girls do you Like (5)_files/tongue.gif)

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
Favorite Member in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #58
Wiseman = OWNT

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
What Kinds of Girls do you Like? in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #107
I'm a right-leaning guy in a school with more than 95% of the students and staff leaning left.

As for category, I dunno. I definitely don't fit any of the "popular" stereotypes (Jock, Prep, whatever). I guess I'm sort of a nerd, since I listen to classical music, drink tea, and study math and physics for fun. On the other hand, I have a sense of hygiene, I excercise and play tennis and ping-pong regularly, and I'm very taciturn (as opposed to the normal geeky stereotype of someone who babbles constantly in c++ or pseudo-quantum-mechanics, and just doesn't know when to keep quiet).

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
Family in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #20
My family is normal by my standards. I guess it's normal enough by anyone else's standards too.

About left-handedness: I'm a righty, but every now and then I try writing with my left hand. I find it much easier to write with my left hand backwards. Can you lefties write backwards easily, or does that not come naturally?

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
life on mars in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #26
Well, using a "biodome" model of colonization wouldn't require terraforming a whole planet - it would just require terraforming one or two square miles. Which in my opinion is a rather monumental task considering how much it costs to send a single metal box on wheels up to the moon.

As a side note, who coined the word "terraform?"

EDIT: Ugly ugly spelling errors.

[ Monday, February 16, 2004 07:58: Message edited by: Death by a Waveform ]

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
What Kinds of Girls do you Like? in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #90
Yes, welcome back indeed!

-Motrax, who's got nothing to say on topic, but hasn't posted in a while so he'll just steal Alorael's signature and flee while there's time.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
It's a small world! in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #35
Everyone here should know where Dragyn Bob lives. *Coughs in a conspirital manner*

I live in the suburbs of DC. I tried to get a few of my friends to play exile once upon a time (I think that was before BoE came out), an endeavor which ultimately, and rather rapidly, failed.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
Israel, Palestine, and the US Hand in it All in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #15
(Sorry about the ugly formatting in the first article)

--------------------
Thursday Feb. 5, 2004
Ahmad al-Rahim
Martyrs and Individuals

This past weekend was Eid al-Adha, the Muslim holiday that marks the end of the Hajj period. Al-Adha literally means "the immolation," and the holiday commemorates Abraham's near-sacrifice of Ishmael. In the Muslim tradition, it was Ishmael, not Isaac, whom God called upon Abraham to bind and sacrifice. As in the Judeo-Christian tradition, an angel stopped Abraham at the last minute, saving Ishmael's life and calling on Abraham to sacrifice a lamb instead.

The lesson imparted about the sanctity of life is also applied to Muslims participating in the Hajj, who are obligated under Islamic law not to swat a fly or even pluck a leaf from a tree in the sanctuary around the Kaaba stone in Mecca. On Sunday, that obligation was violently violated as a stampede broke out by one of the pilgrimage stations, where tradition has it that the devil appeared to Abraham: 251 pilgrims, mostly Indonesians and Pakistanis, were trampled to death. This is not the first time pilgrims have been crushed in stampedes during the Hajj. In the last decade, more than 700 have been killed in
crowd-control breakdowns. In 1990, 1,426 pilgrims were killed during a stampede in a tunnel. I had gone on Hajj the year before and at the time
found the news devastating. But the victims were hailed as martyrs-"They're so fortunate to have died in Mecca" was the line at my mosque-and evidently little was done afterwards to prevent a repeat of the tragedy. On the same day the 251 pilgrims were crushed to death in Mecca, a few
hundred miles to the northwest in Iraq, two suicide bombers walked into Eid al-Adha celebrations in Erbil, detonating themselves and killing 101 Iraqi Kurds. Kurdish leaders had brought out the community for a celebration of
God's sparing Ishmael's life, only to have their holiday shattered by two terrorists intent on taking human life- the more lives, the better.
Both in Mecca and Erbil, Eid al-Adha was marked by an inversion of traditional intent: to celebrate the sanctity of life. The bitter irony of this year's holiday speaks to an erosion in respect for human life in large parts of the Muslim world. When suicide bombings primarily targeted Israelis riding buses or eating in cafes, the attacks were celebrated as "resistance"
and justified as holy acts. But now that an ideological disease that cheapens human life has enveloped the Muslim world, many of those who once
praised suicide attacks are scrambling to stem the tide in their own societies. This week did, however, offer positive lessons about human dignity. In an exchange between the Israeli government and Hezbollah, 429 Arab prisoners,
many accused of killing civilians, were released in return for one Israeli hostage and the bodies of the three dead soldiers. The exchange illustrated the respect Israelis have for the lives of their own citizens (one of the
soldiers was an Arab Druze, and the hostage, Elhanan Tannenbaum, appears to have been part of a shady deal at the time of his abduction). Hezbollah's leaders no doubt see this trade as a sign of Israeli weakness-but their bargain's terms revealed the devaluation of Arab lives. The average: over a hundred living Arabs for one dead Israeli, be he Jewish or not. The thread that connects the recurring stampedes in Mecca, the suicide bombings in Iraq, and the lopsided exchanges between Israel and Hezbollah is
the deficit of respect for the individual in the Arab world. This erosion has occurred in a political context, where too many governments in the region deny their citizens basic individual rights in order to maintain a tight grip on society. When societies trample over the individual, human life is debased.
Eid al-Adha offers a message of redemption, that a near child-sacrifice can be transformed into an appreciation of human life. This may give us hope
that Arab Muslim societies can overcome the devastating effects of political repression and misguided ideologies. But a change will only come about if we insist that calling people martyrs is just a cover for the disregard of the individual and the celebration of murder.

Mr. Rahim is a professor of Near Eastern languages and civilizations at Harvard

----------------------

Feb. 10, 2004
Gaza Beduin ambivalent about withdrawal
By MATTHEW GUTMAN

Tugging at one of the legs of his polyester trousers, Dr. Khadar Kunan, the stout pharmacist who runs one of two clinics in the destitute Mawasi marshlands of the Gaza Strip, declares: "Just as you cannot fit two legs into this pant leg, you cannot fit two states in this land."

Kunan's is not only an appeal for a bi-national state – which would end the prison-like conditions endured by the forgotten Mawasi Palestinians, wedged between the Gush Katif settlement bloc and the Mediterranean Sea. It is also a subtle plea for Israel not to evacuate the Gaza Strip's Jewish settlements.

The Mawasi, descendants of Beduin tribes and Palestinian farmers living in a narrow strip of land between Palestinian- and Israeli-controlled Gaza, are deeply ambivalent about Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's pledge to evacuate the settlements. On one hand, they would welcome the freedom of movement and self rule. On the other, the 7,500 or so Mawasi residents will mourn the loss of much-needed jobs in the settlements. They also dread the possibility of vigilantism by Palestinians resentful of their work over the years for Jewish farmers. Hundreds of Mawasi residents work in the Gaza Strip settlements, and sell 30 percent of their produce to Israeli merchants.

At the southern end of the roughly 400-square kilometer Gaza Strip sits the Gush Katif bloc, a slim rectangle about 12 km. long and 4 km. wide. Within the Jewish bloc of settlements is the even narrower band of Mawasi encampments, 10 km. long and about 1 km. wide. The Mawasi residents are free to move within the marshlands – but the area is so cramped that Kunan fills his rusty Audi's gas tank less than once a month.

"This is a prison within a prison. I want the freedom to travel, to see things," he said from his empty clinic. "But if [the settlers] leave, where will we work?"

Aside from the advanced irrigation systems planted in systematic patterns in their fields – a technique learned from the Israelis – the lives of Mawasi have changed little in the past 50 years. Children smacking beasts of burden with segments of irrigation pipe drive their carts down sandy lanes. Outhouses are as common as toilets, and there is not a dentist or a real doctor to be found.

Still, beyond the poverty and the pervasive odor of waste, many Palestinians consider the Mawasi the fruit basket of the Gaza Strip, a paradise.

Locals say the Mawasi could easily feed all the Palestinians if their produce could enter the West Bank. Its pristine beaches abut the most water-rich region in the Gaza Strip. Locals boast of growing the best guava in the Arab world.

The reason for the Mawasi's farming success?

"We learned our farming techniques from the Israelis," admits Amin, a bookish-looking farmer who gestures toward his hothouse.

Peering from behind thick spectacles, Amin notes that, before Israel seized the Gaza Strip from Egypt in 1967, "we did not have refrigerators, cars, electricity under the Egyptians. But when Israel arrived we all built houses, bought cars and fridges."

The Mawasi earned such previously unknown luxuries by working as construction laborers building the settlements, and in the fields. In the process they gained experience in construction, irrigation, and farming that they consequently exported to other Palestinian cities. Dozens continue to work for contractors in Gush Katif.

Many locals marvel of their former relations with their Israeli colleagues and supervisors. They used to sleep in Tel Aviv, and were treated as equals, even among Israeli security personnel, they said.

Now, the gates to the rest of the Gaza Strip are often closed, and the Mawasi are forced to sell off their produce for a fraction of its price. Also, the IDF-imposed security measures forbid them from harvesting fish from the Mediterranean.

Sitting in his clinic near the Masawi dockyards – now a fishing boat graveyard – Kunan says simply that "things have changed." Still, he estimates that some 60% of the Masawi Beduin "like Israel."

Asked if, given the choice, he would return to the pre-intifada days of 1986, Amin replies, "of course." From the white-bearded Mawasi mukhtar, Ahmed al-Majaeda, to farmers like Amin, their is broad agreement that their lives would be fine – were it not for the checkpoints.
There are two checkpoints leading to Palestinian-controlled areas, at the north and south ends of the strip. They are open based on the whim of the Mawasi's Palestinian neighbors in Rafah and Khan Yunis; when violence rages, the gates close, said an Israeli security source.

The source said that the IDF had expanded the two checkpoints on Monday, doubling the speed with which they can process the Mawasi. In addition, he said, there are no restrictions on the Mawasi from fishing with whatever conveyance they choose.

The Shin Bet has forbidden the Mawasi from crossing a thin strip of dunes that divides the major axis road of their community from the road leading to the strip of Jewish settlements.

Eran Sternberg, spokesman of Gush Katif's Hof Aza Regional Council, said Tuesday that Palestinian terrorists often attempt to infiltrate the Mawasi to use it as a base to attack local settlers. All told, however, Sternberg said the Mawasi has been very quiet these past three years.

For Kunan, one of the most troubling aspects of living in Mawasi is the frequent Shin Bet recruitment. He was "invited" to visit the Shin Bet just a few days ago, he said. A close friend of his received a similar letter Monday.

Continuing business relations with Israelis have earned the Mawasi the suspicion of other Palestinians. Even Mukhtar Majaeda, who sells Paz brand gasoline to the Mawasi, was cuffed by Fatah gang members who "advised" him to distance himself from Israelis, said locals.

When asked Monday to describe his relations with Israel, Majaeda promptly replied, "none at all."

"If Israel pulls out," says Kunan, "then we have no idea what the future holds. I assume that the government [PA] will take the land from the people. We just hope it won't be like before, where they took money and did not give it to the people."

Amin dreads the day the PA will take over, saying, "They [PA officials] love the seat of power more than anything." Underscoring his point, Amin stood, faced his plastic chair, and graced it with a loud kiss, much to the mirth of his comrades lounging outside the mukhtar's house.

Sitting around a little stove in the sandy lot that serves as a courtyard in front of Majaeda's house, some local men mocked the "Tunis Mafia" – a moniker given to PA Chairman Yasser Arafat's Fatah officers who arrived in Gaza in 1994, who earned notoriety for their taste for Israeli goods and partying in Tel Aviv.

Unlike many of the other villages and cities in the Gaza Strip, the vengeance-invoking graffiti of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Aksa Martyrs Brigades is not splashed onto concrete walls in the Mawasi.

Kunan – who also happens also to be a captain in the defunct PA police force, he says – nominally belongs to Fatah. None of that matters in the end, he says, with the nodding approval of the others. Kunan's real mistress, he says, is a pay slip – wherever it comes from.

He waves away a question about maltreatment by Fatah members resentful over the Mawasi's collaboration with Israel. "If they give me $300-$400 per month, they can tell me anything they want. Otherwise they can go to hell."

Before he rises to leave, Kunan concludes dourly: "It does not matter, nobody thinks about us much. We are lost."

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
It's a small world! in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #7
Alorael, my evil Bulgarian great-uncle, first introduced me to the world of Exile.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
Good laptops, and syndrome diagnosis. in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #7
I too beleive these various psychological syndromes are just blanket explanations which clump totally different people into the same category. Makes psychiatrists look more professional when they can stick a complicated-sounding name onto something. And makes it easier to convince people they need to buy medication.

Not to say there aren't psychological disorders, but I think overdiagnosis is a rather common occurence these days.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
What Kinds of Girls do you Like? in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #42
Mister Creator has summed up my own experience rather well. Although I might venture to say I'm less morose than he is. Life is life! Live, and smile, whether or not the most beautiful lady in the world tells you she ain't interested. IMAGE(What Kinds of Girls do you Like (2)_files/tongue.gif)

EDIT: To address the topic at hand... I just know I like someone when I see them, or not. And with time, opinions change. It's silly to generalize about who you like since you really don't know until you've met them.

[ Thursday, February 12, 2004 13:05: Message edited by: Death by a Waveform ]

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
Favorite Member in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #42
Stareye has taught me a good deal of math and physics. Schroedinger too, though he's online much less to answer my questions. Alorael is my estranged uncle, I don't like him one bit. Alec and TM 'n' Thuryl 'n' BtI 'n' Feran 'n' Djur 'n' the rest of the Desp crew makes Spiderweb interesting. The Meteorologists of Polaris who need not be named are the reason why I didn't leave on quite a few occasions. JF is most definitely a genius beyond our comprehension, so I'll just have to mention him. BoEing voted for me that one time long, long ago when we were choosing a Misc. mod. Khoth, among other things, gave me a bunch of webspace a while ago. Member 314 for all those instant messenger conversations. Lady J, wherever she me be, deserves mentioning.

Aww, hell, all you guysh 'r' great. :wub:

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
What do you do when you're bored? :3 in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #6
I post in the "I'm Bored" topic at Polaris when I'm bored. THen I get un-bored. Yay.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
MissingNo and M in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #11
Well, this is a Spiderweb message board. Pokemon has nothing to do with Spiderweb, so don't get all angry when you don't get the answers you want.

Why don't you try this website for your question? It seems to help a lot of people with a lot of things, maybe you'd find it useful too.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
Stupid Question-Does anyone like furries? in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #5
Kurtz approves.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
Undead Topics Need Loving Too (aka "Give Me Your First-Born") in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #97
I spent an evening conceptually mucking through quantum mechanics and relativity. I came to a bunch of neato conclusions, sort of "discovering" modern physics with a little more understand than the faith which previously had me learning the stuff. I now understand and believe the "Schrodinger's Cat Conundrum" or whatever you want to call it, I think.

Although my understanding is probably more than a little flawed, I'm content enough right now to continue trusting what PhDs have to say for a while.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
Presidential Candidates...? in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #20
Kerry 100%
Dean 97%
.
.
.
Bush 61%

Yes, Bush was at the bottom of my list. I'm only mildly surprised at this - I disagree with most (maybe all?) of his religion-based viewpoints such as abortion, prayer in school, gay rights, etc etc. I don't think he's a great man, I just disliked Gore more.

As for the Democrats, Kerry was at the top of my list, so this affirms things a little more. I really dislike Dean, though, and he's high up there too. Whatever.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
The System is Down... Again in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #4
Polaris is indeed down, but we really shouldn't be posting about it on Spiderweb all the time. Although Polaris is an offshoot of these forums, people who visit only here (or Desp too, or whatever) don't need to read complaints about Polaris all the time.

Maybe we should set up a mailing list? That way if Logo trashes our boards again, he can notify everyone without bothering others who don't care.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
Undead Topics Need Loving Too (aka "Give Me Your First-Born") in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #93
I have a new moniker!
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
What music (if any) are you listening to... in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #987
RACHMANINOFF IS TEH WINNAR!!!11

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
What music (if any) are you listening to... in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #975
Beethoven's 31st Sonata, 4th movement.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
What music (if any) are you listening to... in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #970
Rachmaninoff's Cello Sonata. Then Brahms' 1 and 2. Then back to the Rach. And over and over and over again, because I can't decide which to play.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00
What music (if any) are you listening to... in General
Senile Reptile
Member # 547
Profile #957
Scarlatti cello sonata No. 2 in C minor. A break from Rachmaninoff, which I've been listening too a bit obsessively.

--------------------
Polaris
Posts: 1614 | Registered: Wednesday, January 23 2002 08:00

Pages