Big Sister Knows Best

Thanks to Lemuel Craft

My little sister loves to argue. She thinks she is always right about any topic. Now, I have to confess that I also love a good argument and I’ve been known to think I’m right about things that I don’t really know for sure as well. With that said, we got into it the other night. And over the stupidest thing too! It was over Kim Kardashian! You would think in our hardships of war and with the economic crisis, we could find something more serious to argue over, but no! My sister and I were disagreeing because she thought that Kim was going to stay with her husband and I had heard they had already filed for divorce. So we solved it the way we normally end up solving our arguments…Google! I’ll have you know, I was right and she was wrong. I love when that happens! I’m so smart! I can’t take all the credit though. I should thank my sister for being wrong, Google, and Satellite Star Internet for allowing me to do a quick search. I love being right….for now!

A Bucket Full of Beercaps

Well, one trip to Goodwill later ends up with buying several shot glasses, a pilsner glass, Christmas lights, and to finish it up...

a party bucket with Budweiser logo!

Now since we made a post a little while back about our exploits with bottle caps, we are temporarily storing every one of the 300+ caps in our party bucket. It also acts as a makeshift cap bucket to toss our caps into. Allow the party to commencerate!

Adding pictures later from my actual machine. You won't believe how awesome it is for the low, low Goodwill price of $1! Cheers.

Us and the Kids

Guest post from: Winston Stewart

It’s really important to me to keep the lines of communication open with my kids especially since they’re getting to that age where they’re in the danger zone for getting the wrong kind of influences. They’re both great kids, don’t get me wrong, but I know how hard it was to be a teenager and have everyone from classmates to teammates to people on TV telling you what to do. Speaking of TV, my husband recently got us SatellieTvFamily in HD and we’ve instituted a family Sunday rule around here where we have to spend the whole day together. Since it’s fall we usually just end up watching football or some other sport on TV but I like that we’re all together in one room and that I get to really hang out with my kids. I know these moments are fleeting and there won’t be too many more of them so I’m trying to soak them up while my kids are still willing and able to spend a whole day with their old mom!

Back to School Shopping

Summer is over and it's time to stop all that awesome summer stuff you were doing and get back to the grind.

Me, Conquering Nature

It's time to go back to school. Going back is good and bad... its kind of like getting sent to party prison. Of course you need to be prepared for any and all circumstances that await you in the coming semester. So I took the time to come up with a comprehensive school shopping list to prevent you from coming off as a total jabroni this year. Here's what you'll need and why.

1. A Sword- When the time is right, you'll know what to do.
2. Beer monies- What? you haven't been saving up? Good luck you poor bastard.
3. Plan B (for beer monies)- Scheme it, rob it, job it. Whatever you gotta do, man.
4. Lab Coats- For Experiments
5. Top Hats and Monocles- For Fancy Night 
6. Grappling Hook- To get on the roof
7. A Kiddy Pool and Lawn Chairs- For getting hotdaydrunk in
8. Tiki Torches and Hawaiian shirts- For Luau Night
9. Guitar- For the inevitable rock offs (usually against demons or final bosses)
10. Power Tools- For any renovations you want to make to your room (Water slide, sky light, escape pod etc.)

Quick Fix for Laptop Failures - Cable Shorts

To think it only took a half hour to fix, and caused hours of discomfort. Yes, the only thing bugging my laptop and preventing it from starting was a cable short, specifically the touchpad cable. Somehow the wires had separated from the plastic casing and were burning a few wires they shouldn't have been.

Knowing is half the battle, be prepared and remember cable shorts are irritating as all hell.

League of Legends - Buff Vladimir!

Well the community has been wanting it for quite a while, and Phreak has rumored they are reading the posts. Just about every refresh on LoL's forums will show a post with numerous examples as to how Vladimir is severely underpowered and overlooked by other Ability Power based champions: Will Riot buff him in the next few patches?

Today, 01:18 PM
So lets compare them:

Lane: Vladmir main source of damage is his Transfusion (Q) and Tides of Bloods (E), both of which have very low range, in the laning phase. Compared to other mages his early game is very weak. His Q is on a High CD so, so he can't spam it, and his E doesn't do nearly as much damage to be noticeable,unless you spam it until 4 stacks,in which case your going to be low on health most of the time. All the other mages have better poke,farm,etc. The only thing that vlad can do better is escaping ganks with his Sanguine Pool (W), or as I call it the trollpool. 

Teamfight: This really depend on whos farmed more, but it doesn't even matter really when we're talking about Vlad. He will usually just be an AP off tank. He's not like Brand or Annie where they burst, then come back and do it again. He's like an sustained kind of fighter. The only reason why he is still able to teamfight is his pool, which keeps him alive in teamfights. He has to get so close to use his skills, so most of the time you will be like Q>E>R>W>Q>E then die. His teamfight is only good if you can ult atleast 3 of them and stay in teamfights for a while. If you can't stay in a teamfight, then your pretty much a burden to your team. Usually AP casters will do more damage than you in teamfights,since there so short.

Utility: This isn't even a contest. Annie, and Orianna have a AoE stun, Brand has a stun,which isn't much, but makes up for it with his damage. What does Vladmir have? He has a slow. Now this is good if you can slow 5 of them, but unless you have a good team right as soon you come up from your pool, you will get focused and die. Vlad doesn't offer as much utility as other mages.

Survivability: There's not much to say about Vlad's survivability. Since Vlad has to get upclose to do some damage his survivability is really low. For a person that doesn't bulid tanky, to have to get up close to do damage you can bet your going to get focus the moment you get up from your pool, or when your walking into the teamfight.

Writing for Fun - and Cash!

It has been a little while since I last wrote an article for CDT, but that doesn't mean it has been a while since I got paid to write!

I had heard of Fiverr before, but I never took a look into it. Let's face it, if you have a real job you probably do not need the extra cash from doing cheap gigs. But since this summer's jobs were scarce for what I was applying for, I convinced myself to try my hand at Fiverr.

As older readers of this blog can probably tell, we at College DownTime enjoy writing. The little twists, allusions, and general personality our articles have should tell that. Well, did you know people actually pay for that personality? Me neither before the other week!

All you have to do is make a quick account, describe what you will do for $5, and advertise it a bit. Typically, the first hour is the most important one for your gig. If you get a sale within that first hour, you know your gig will be profitable. Try getting as many pageviews as possible as well for your gig. Try tweeting it with the hash tag #fiverr for more hits.

I picked a topic I know quite well, League of Legends articles and information. Surprisingly, plenty of people with blogs and sites want LoL content and screenshots. Considering the time spent, the pay is fairly decent as a part-time gig. Try it out if you want a few extra bucks for a bottle or two a week, there's hardly any risk except to your ego.

Quick Guide to "Wish You Were Here"

As previous postings have suggested, we here at CDT are quite fond of Pink Floyd, as many music connoisseurs are. We took the time this week to try and learn a few riffs of one of their most famous and most emotional songs, "Wish You Were Here," from the album of the same name.

Before that however, it is interesting to note the song is primarily speaking to Syd Barrett, former songwriter/guitarist for the band. Unfortunately for him, his love of LSD got in the way of his musical career with the Floyd. But as he was forced to leave, this gave Roger Waters his chance to shine, and shine he did, producing all the classic albums you here on the radio every day.

All right, to begin with you need a guitar. Check. Now, anyone who knows the song basically knows the intro since the rest of the song gets a little muddled with other instruments and singing. This is the only part you need to know to be awesome in a group.

To translate above, your middle finger starts on the third fret of your low E string while your index and ring fingers straddle the second fret on both the A and D string. The trick here is not necessarily getting the notes, that's easy enough, but to get down the strumming rhythm. Pink Floyd songs are notoriously easy to play, but hard to copy exactly due to rhythm.

What you want to do is play it thinking, "one and uh two, three, four (strum the chord here)" and repeat. The hammer ons are all played quicker than the rest of the notes, which are steady.

Good luck, and remember to sing your heart out. Somewhere Syd Barrett can hear! Shine on you crazy Diamond, you!

Strum a few Times   Strum a few Times	
	    	     ^V^                 ^V^
D-------------0--2----0----2-----2--------0---|   * 2            

                Strum a few Times               Strum a few Times
                     ^V^                              ^V^

Going Fishing? Bring Ketchup

Yes, ketchup does work wonders for a quick fishing trip. There isn't much to it. Say for instance, your lure and hook are a little dull. That's bad, you think to yourself, the fishies can't see my death grasp.

I know! I'll clean it with some polishing chemicals. No, you will not. Those chemicals deter fish from going anywhere near your lure. That's bad.

Use ketchup fellows. The slight acidic composition will clean off anything on your rod. I mean anything, previous bait, catches, dog biscuits, dollar bill residue, anything. Plus, it leaves your lure tasty fresh for future catches.

Just a couple packets in your tackle box and you're set. Or don't and sit in that lake wondering why the fish won't bite after you irradiated their environment with your cleaning supplies.

Laptop Needs Thermal Paste? DiY Laptop Repair Turns into Broken Laptop

Well it finally happened: I temporarily broke my laptop. Seems that DiY projects sometimes come back to bite you (me). All I wanted to do was to reapply a new layer of thermal paste on my heatsink, but I could not do it. Bummer, I thought, I'll just put it back together.

Reassembled laptop. Hit the power button. Nothing.

That is when my heart stopped. I repeatedly pressed the power button. Still nothing.

You ever had a feeling of screwing up so badly you don't know what to do?

Man, I felt like hell until I got my stuff together the next day and went through the process all over, screw for screw. Somehow I must have managed to not fully connect a wire or screw because it started up perfectly after reassembling it again. Phew.

That first night of dealing with a broken $500 laptop felt terrible. The following day felt great, like I resurrected the dead. Glad that's over, time to get back to blogging.

Tips to Save on Insurance - Las Vegas Edition

As we at College DownTime are based in Las Vegas, we figured we would do a little piece on some of the mostly-unknown tips to saving on car insurance. This is especially important for registering your vehicle in Las Vegas, as the city is deemed "24/7 driving," meaning the insurance companies want to charge you for more insurance since LV has constant traffic. Let us get started.

1) For married folks: Combine your individual cars onto one policy. This is fairly standard, but it is still surprising to hear of folks complaining how marriage ADDS more costs than it saves. Read up.

2) Where you live: Las Vegas has quite a few areas that have a higher crime. If you live in a high-density neighborhood, you WILL be paying more. Congestion means more money. Hint: Don't move to North Las Vegas if you have the choice. This site lists crime per area in LV, use it.

3) Pay ahead of time: If you pay the full 6-12 months at once, you get a slight discount. This is usually somewhere around 1-3% with a good company.

4) Deductible amount: Know what you are covered under and decide if you want to opt for a higher deductible. Higher deductible means less per month, but more if you actually need to use your insurance. Depending on where you live in Las Vegas, this could be terrible to do.

5) Pass driver's education: Show your little certificate if you are a student and usually you will get 5% off. This could be your best way to save money fast.

6) I can drive: Always be the driver of your car. Unless you are tighter than Joanie and Chachi, do not pan your keys off to someone.

7) Where you park: If you live in an apartment or complex that uses a garage, put it on your policy. You will get quite a bit off due to less risk of vandalism and weather.

8) Show off your degree: There is a good chance a college degree will lessen your costs.

9) Work and play: Live close to your workplace, it will make you less stressful and most companies lessen your insurance rates.

Overall, there is always the standard: Don't drive stupid, update your vehicle, keep it registered, and don't steal gas. I know we all have genius ideas on how to get away with it, but you'll lose your license way fast. Though if I were to steal gas, I'd frame someone explicitly and get out of the state ASAP.

Always carry extra DNA and clear tape with random fingerprints, there is always a use.

Update to Stock Tips

Some of my trading funds had cleared up a bit (meaning I sold before I lost my shirt), and now I am back to researching and gathering information for my next trade. I have yet to make a Scottrade account for the Level 2 quotes (and I'm not even sure if Scottrade's L2 is good for penny stocks) so I was in need of some other way of knowing the real-time price of a stock I am watching.

Vantagewire was the easiest one I found to work well enough. All I had to do was fill out a generic form, answer a couple questions as to what kind of trader I am, and then I activated my account. Now note that it is not exactly what a true L2 platform is, but it is close.

Once you login, all you have to do to find the real-time PPS of a ticker is enter the ticker symbol, click Depth/L2, and refresh the page every time you want to check the real-time PPS. It is basically an easy work-around to paying $20-30 a month, especially if you are a casual trader like myself.

It might occasionally be 1-2 minutes behind, but that is considerably better than Yahoo Finance or OTCBB's 15 minute lag time. The website can also be unresponsive occasionally, so be prepared for a drop in communication once in a while.

Beer Bottle Caps and DownTime

You were aware of your drinking habits years ago and until recently, you did not know how to express them to others. Especially folks you just met who have no idea your idea of a fun time is, well...gee, I can't remember. I know it had something to do with something.

Time to actually do something with those bottle caps you were collecting for three years. Stop chucking them at one another in an attempt to see who can fit the most in the bowling ball girl-boobs.

Ideas we will most likely be putting to use next semester:

1) Making a doormat. Arrange the caps in whatever design you want and decide if you want to put them into the ground, embed into a carpet-like material, or make a resin mold. If you really want to make it interesting, use a few bottles in the design as well.

2) Make a beer cap curtain. You know those cheesy, beaded curtains every Hollywood fortune teller has? Yeah, make one out of beer caps and cord. All you have to do is drill two tiny holes in each cap and string it through. Or be lazy and duct tape them on, I will never know.

3) Make a poster. Arrange your bottle caps in a design, get some resin, smooth out the surface and put a picture hanger on it. Done.

4) Play checkers. Paint half black, half red. Voila! You have a checkers set now.

5) Switch out your bass guitar tuning pegs. Take two of your caps, superglue them together, covering the peg. Works best with a bass, but a regular guitar might work if you're careful.

6) Play cards with them. Note: This works with Pabst Blue Ribbon only. Collect the whole set!

This will probably have secondary posts in the upcoming semester, so cheers to the beginning! Stay sharp y'all.

Relaxing with Pink Floyd Outside

Well after a hard day of tasting and tending to my mead, I figured I had earned a beer. But should it be a beer inside or outside, I thought to myself as I slowly stroked my beard. Well, there is a massive heat wave going on, humidity levels are through the roof, and inside is at least slightly cooler than the porch.

Outside it is. That is a Honey Brown you see, check out the Liquor Log for info.

With some downtime on my hands, I set up my Bose Wave radio and connected my tuneskies. As Wish You Were Here was playing though, I noticed the radio wasn't exactly outdoor friendly, save for garage usage. It is also the same one I use for gaming when I set it up. But it really does not have much bass to it. Sure it tweets like a parakeet, but how can I hear a zombie coming behind me? They don't tweet, they snarl.

Well, what speakers do I need? I'm looking for something heavy and in a manageable-size. I was looking for outdoor speakers as well as something to possibly use in the garage. I don't have a real amp out at college either, so if the speakers had some definition I could just hook up my POD amp and use the speakers as a make-shift amp. Time to go searching, back in a bit.

Making Mead Once Again!

Back with my cattle once again. While I was away, I left my last batch of homebrew mead (honey wine) to finalize its alcohol-making processes. Well it's been two weeks since I started it, time to test how it made out.

Quite decent. After two weeks, most of the fermentation has stopped. There is still minimal bubbling, but not enough to affect the alcohol content too much, especially since the yeast used is your basic dry yeast. In fact, the slight bubbling seems to give the mead a slight carbonation flavor and texture.

After bottling the batch (took a boatload of patience let me tell you), I loosely capped each off since gas buildup might still occur. The next couple weeks will be interesting to see how it settles out.


5 gallon glass jug (classy this time, right?)

5 lbs honey

1.5 gallons water (roughly, in actuality it's probably slightly less)

2 packets dry yeast

That is absolutely it. This mead was an attempt at a pure-mead, one without any extra ingredients or flavorings. At first taste it is quite sweet since our ratio of honey : water is higher than before. If you want to see our other recipes of previous meads, check them out here.

Over the next couple weeks we will post pictures of the mead settling and how to tell when it is clear enough to serve. Cheers!

Making the Blocks for the Plastic Bottle Raft

Well after three days of nine-hour volunteering, I will take the time to put together some up-to-date information on how the reusing experiment is going. I wanted to make blocks of bottles in order to easily lay them together, assemble, and store. Since I am a college student and I do not have the foresight to know how duct tape will work, I automatically assume it will hold together anything I use it on, so why stop myself now?

The above picture is a pile of all the blocks I put together. Similar size bottles were grouped together, organized, and then tightly taped. Well today I found out duct tape slacks up a bit, so I might have to do a bit more research and taping.

The plan this weekend is to make quite a few more blocks and test some layouts. Twice as many blocks are probably going to be needed ASAP, so I will probably be seen biking around town acting as one of those angry environmentalists. You know what? I'll just wear an oversized tree-shirt (get it?) and munch granola bars.

There has got to be a better, yet cheap, alternative to duct tape. Time for a smoke and a thought. Seacrest, out.

League of Legends - Just One Game...

As with many college students, much downtime is spent gaming. And by our previous posts, you know we have old consoles. Though highly nostalgic and awesome, they are not the best gaming devices for long periods of time, save for Super Smash Bros. Then a buddy of mine introduced me to League of Legends (LoL), a game based off of a Warcraft III map (DOTA, DotA, dota, whatever). It is completely free to play if you choose so, yet you are able to buy champions and starter packs as you wish. Now for a short story about tonight's game:

So I have a Level 30 LoL account and I was trying to get my buddy used to the game. He has played a couple dozen matches at his low-level Elo (ranking system), so I wanted him to get used playing versus better opponents. So we duo-queue and team up with a Xin Zhao who warns us that he becomes legendary if the other team is not fed (given a lot of gold by kills). First warning. If you ever see a player type that, they are some God-blessed newbs.

So the game starts out fine. I play as Vladimir, a great tanky-spellcaster full of harassment, damage, escape, and fully capable of making enemies frustrated (fun, right?) My buddy plays as Ashe, a great carry and decent tower killer. Xin Zhao starts off with an attack speed item. I do not know why we continued playing at that point. I mean, who does not start with boots + 3 pots in a 3v3? Not even a Doran's?

I get First Blood (of course) and proceed to dominate top lane, outlaning Poppy, and successfully ganking bottom a couple times. Then Xin gets cocky. He goes off on his own, dies several times in between getting assists from my ganks. Eye for an eye right? Nope, he continues to go off soloing the enemy team. And you know what? He isn't even mad or cautious or trolling. A guy who legitimately thinks he can take on 3 at once 30 minutes into the game. Then he stops moving at the turret we were defending. Then he disconnects. Two choices arrive: surrender, or attempt to win. As Vladimir, surrendering isn't an option. Buddy and I actually Ace them at one point, push a little, get pushed back. But versus a Poppy, Leona, and a Rammus, our poor turret didn't stand a chance.

Why Xin, why? We could have won if you just defended turrets while Ashe and I murdered!

And that is one option for spending some downtime in college. The end. Also, here are the champions I can play if you want to friend me, ecstaSTEVE. Not great with Anivia, but Alistar...oh man.

Nostalgia? Play Number Munchers Now!

Similar to the article we made on installing and playing Oregon Trail, you can now introduce your family to the nostalgic floppy-disk game Number Munchers! The only computer game your first grade teacher let you play. Play different modes of math problems, like fractions, multiples, addition, etc. All you have to do to win is press space bar and "eat" the numbers, whilst avoiding the evil Troggles. They kill you like no tomorrow and give you more numbers to eat before passing the level. Damn Troggles.

Since this is abandonware, you can download it anywhere, anytime. It ran on MSDOS back in the day, so you need DOSBox once again. Install the Number Munchers folder to your games folder and let's get ready to load it up.

Know your folder location and then type:

MOUNT C C:\*your folder*   --- example: I type "MOUNT C C:\GAMES\NUMBER-MUNCHERS

Once the local directory is mounted, in two different commands you type:



That's it brah. Start playing and enjoy. Just remember to set your directory appropriately and lookup the file name of the application itself, though I am fairly sure it's "nm.exe" for most downloads.

FYI - it's not actually a bad game to freshen up for the GREs, as standardized testing standards are lower than ever!

Reuse Plastic Bottles - Build a Raft

No, we aren't talking about this plastic ship, that is waaaayyyy too complex. Nope, the idea here is to make a raft, or possibly a couch, out of old plastic bottles and containers with nothing more than duct tape, maybe some wire, and rubber cement. This is a bit of a long-term project, so for now I'll just show you how I began the project.

First, you have to get a boatload of bottles. This can probably be done in a day if you walk around town. Or, if you are like my family, you consume so many bottles you have a separate trash collection can called "recyclables," but is in fact simply used to store post-consumption waste. Clean them out and get ready to seal them off. If you don't feel like cleaning, you can still make a raft...a raft of uncleanliness!

I use rubber cement on the bottle threads and then twist it shut. Rubber cement has got to be the best glue for most of CDT's projects. I use it for all purposes, not just projects. Pens are so hard to hold onto, so just apply a little to your digits and profit!  That bowl of Cheetos just will not stay on your belly? Apply a little to your pectorals and profit! Hungry, and there is just nothing that can satisfy your desire for an amorphous, flammable liquid? Stop. Do not taste it, not without a little salt first.

Sometimes you will not have the caps, because let's face it: remembering is hard. If it was easy, I'd remember some allusion to something historical and make it sound witty in this sentence. Therefore, I found the best way of sealing off topless bottles is to get some duct tape, tear off a strip, and then seal up with hot glue. Seal the glue all around the bottle top's edge making sure it is waterproof. Or not, and let your raft sink, it's not like I care.

One attempt today is to figure out how to seal together several bottles to make pieces I will use to assemble the raft. I need to make larger pieces of similar sizes to get some consistency in the assembly, otherwise it just takes too much time taping each piece together individually. Let's see how it goes. Cheers, and good luck.

Draw Something - A Charcoal Turkey

As Thanksgiving approaches (it is only 4.5 months away), we are once again reminded of the majestic, almost-national-bird, the turkey. As usual in college, I had some downtime and decided to forever memorialize the flightless bird in charcoal. It took a few tries to get the head and feathers decent enough to allow recognition, but it could still use a bit of work.

Meh, it's not terrible for a half-hour's work I'd wager. I think it's clearly recognizable as a turkey, even if the feathers and feet say differently. Oh, so you think you're better than me? Well bring it buster, it's on. I'll see your rendering with my expert shading and light-accents. Pfft, you call that a rendering?

Stealth Drinking Part 3 - Hide Your Flask

Holy cow, you still need more ways to drink stealthily? You might actually have a few problems. Fortunately, we could care less about your problems and instead we are going to focus on drinking. Let's get to work.

Today's Stealth Drinking post is a how-to on making a secret flask book. It is shown in movies, comics, and cartoons constantly ("No wonder they call it the good book" - Homer Simpson drinking from a flask hidden in a bible). You might have thought they were clever and that it takes a God-blessed genius to craft one. Well, you are a God-blessed simpleton to think so. Do you have a few minutes? Sure you do, you're on the internet.

1) Get a big book. You will need at least 300 pages (1" of paper). Find a big book on clearance at your library for $.50 and be done with it. I found an old Ozzy Osbourne biography book that was not getting any attention.

2) Glue the pages together on the outside. I used rubber cement, as the brush strokes leave the edges clean. You could theoretically use any regular white glue, but why man? Rubber cement keeps the pages bendy while holding them together!

3) Put your flask on the book and outline it. Then start cutting away. I used a regular utility knife without a straightedge. It shows. If you want a pro-looking book, use a straightedge on every cut. Keep cutting out pages until your flask fits in the crevice and the book closes properly.

4) Sand out the inside. You took the time to make it, you might as well make it look decent. All those tattered, cut hang-nails look terrible. If you tried to impress me with that shoddy work, I would laugh in your face and ask your sister if she's doing anyone anything tomorrow night.

5) Apply a layer of glue inside the book along the cut edges. This will keep the pages intact even more and make the overall product bearable to view. You know what? Apply a couple layers. These things tend to fall apart. Do it.

Last tips: Choose an uninteresting book to desecrate. If you have a strong hatred towards an old textbook, go for it! Won't it feel awesome tearing out those pages and then hiding your booze from anyone with a conscience? 

If you have a small bar area setup in your place, find an appropriate looking book to stand next to those bottles. It will class-up the place and you will appear more knowledgeable, because we all hate those book-smart, history-buff bar crawlers always trying to one-up your wits.

Good luck and be smart with your stealth drinking. We know you are out there, but no one else has to. Keep it that way.

Check out our other Stealth Drinking posts Part 1 and Part 2.

The Top 5: N64 Games

To celebrate the birth of America, we here at CDT have decided to honor our great country by showcasing 3 of its greatest inventions; Video Games, Top 5 Lists, and Combinations in CDT's TOP 5 N64 GAMES OF ALL TIME! While searching for my lost vhs copy of one of the greatest and most historically accurate movies ever, “1776”, I unearthed my old Nintendo 64 system which inspired me to dictate this piece of holy listdom.

5. POKEMON SNAP- Awwwww snap! This little known gem is a first person shooter photography game where you are commissioned by Prof. Oak to get pics of a bunch of different Pokemon as you ride around Jurassic Park style tracks on “Pokemon Island.” Never before has taking fake pictures of fake animals been so much fun. It's uncertain what kind of Pavlovian hypnotism makes this game so rewarding to play but in the end its just plain addicting.

4. TONY HAWK”S PRO SKATER- Back in 2000 when skateboarding hit its peak this game came out for N64 and exploded. Everything about this game was phenomenal. It's gameplay, graphics, and set of levels combined to take away countless hours of my life, possibly preventing me from actually learning how to skateboard. I wouldn't have it any other way. Whether you are wrecking shit in a competition in a Chicago skatepark or flying through shiny floating letters and dodging cars in downtown Minneapolis this game will keep you playing till the sun come up. 

3. SUPER SMASH BROS.- Just an awesome concept that came together for an even better game. You can finally put those questions, as to which characters from the N64 universe would win in a fight, to rest. It is really the multiplayer mode that lands this game on our #3 spot. While it will possibly take you a whopping 10 minutes to beat the single player mode, this is an awesome party game. There is nothing better than getting super smashed with your bros and playing Super Smash Bros. 

2. SUPER MARIO KART- It was hard not to put this in the #1 spot considering my affinity for racing games, its outstanding single and multiplayer modes, and the awesome uniqueness that comes from firing turtle shells out of a GoKart. Another great party game, this never gets old whether you're with friends or by yourself. This game isn't lacking in tracks, modes, character, or challenge. True Story: While driving the other day I saw a banana peel in the middle of the road and desperately swerved to avoid it. Moral: This game is the tits.

1. SUPER MARIO 64- What can one say about one of the greatest games from one of the greatest game franchises in gaming history. Needless to say this game has game up the game-hole. However what really puts Super Mario 64 at our #1 spot is the fact that it contains exactly 1 dick-ton of levels. Mario 64 will take you on an shitsplitting adventure through any and every kind of level imaginable. You swim through sunken ships, navigate desert pyramids, trek through haunted houses, and venture into worlds of lava and ice. This really is a well rounded, challenging, and rewarding game to play. An instant and all-time classic.

End Notes: You might be saying, “but but wheres my Goldeneye, my Perfect Dark, my Legend of Zelda?!” Consider this your honorable mention. There are no revisions done to the CDT top 5 lists. For this and all future lists, CDT decree'th THE LIST IS SACRED, 'TIS WRITTEN IN STONE. And as to any disagreement I offer these words from our great founding father, Benjamin Franklin. “One must thusly examine himself to prevent the dismantling of himself.” Happy Independence Day!

Become an Ordained Minister - For Free!

You remember the big 2000-era hype of eChurches? Well they are still around and just as legitimate as ever. Today's post will teach you how to become an actual, legitimately ordained minister, pastor, or priest. It only takes a couple minutes and could possibly be an extra source of income, depending on how far you want to go with it.

1) Head over to The MonasteryAmerican Fellowship Church, or Spiritual Humanism and click Free Online Ordination. These are the ones I found are free.

2) Look over the statement (pfft, ha!) and click Begin!

3) You have to fill in your basic signing-up form information and the submit.

4) Look for your confirmation email and print it out. I keep mine taped to the mirror, to remind myself I can become anything I put my mind to.

After doing all that, they have reminders for you. Typical items like their mission statement, tenets, wedding ceremony info, and even your very own HTML code to put onto your site! Unfortunately, if you really want to become a licensed wedding-making-person, you will have to have a physical token that shows you are ordained. Their wallet-sized ordination card fits in your wallet and is enough proof for most licensing applications. Plus, you can whip it out any time "by the power invested in me..." jokes are relevant. Choose your joke timings carefully as it could become predictable. Learn how to lead into the joke slyly to show off your ordination certificate.

You will have to look up your state's wedding license requirements if you want to keep going with this program. We at College DownTime have it fairly easy in Nevada. Our state's law only asks us to be ordained, be 18+, and pay a $50 license fee! Some states are much harder and expensive, so good luck y'all.

A Lazy Friday Afternoon with RainyMood

Today I am posting this from outside. It is hardly humid, moderately warm, and there is a very-slightly cool breeze drifting by. I had a jazz music playlist on random, a cup of Turkish earl grey tea with bergamot, and my dog was not back from the vet yet, meaning it was quiet. Then I became slightly bored and lost my train of thought. Why am I not competely at ease? Why am I asking myself questions when I should be having my mind defragmenting itself over the tea? I will just have to relax even harder, and I remembered where to start...

RainyMood! A getting-popular-really-fast site that streams a 30 minute-long sound bite of a rainstorm, complete with the occasional distant thunder sound. While it is simply a wonderful stream to have going on a lazy afternoon, that is not where you should stop. The real beauty of this sound bite is to have your own music streaming along with it. On the site itself, it lists a few songs users have tried in conjunction with Rainymood. Today's post will list just a few of my favorites.

Fragrance of Dark Coffee - An interesting orchestral instrumental piece that takes your mind on a calm ride through an English countryside. It is from a Japanese show called Godot about a coffee-loving attorney. Listening to this with RainyMood is quite an experience.

Jazz-styled Piano with Electronic Mixing - an unnamed piece I found via Google. It mixes the slow complexity of smooth jazz piano with electronic beats and effects. While you might think electronic means heavy, I can assure you it is in no way overpowering the piano.

Moonlight Sonata and Overture by Trans Siberian Orchestra - One of Beethoven's best known songs. The first one is the classic piano version and the TSO version is a compilation of several of Beethoven's pieces put together into one song opening for a CD of theirs called Beethoven's Last Night. I am quite the TSO fan, so I prefer their cover over the classic. On a final note, just about every song on Beethoven's Last Night can be played with RainyMood as the CD itself has a dark, creepy, and powerful tone that blends well with a rainstorm (Try Fate).

The Aurora - An electronic/vocalist song complete with a well-done video of a winterscape and aurora. It makes you feel confident and inspired just to listen to the soft vocals mixed with a moderate trance beat. Though quite short, the song almost seems ethereal.

Le Onde - A classical-themed piano piece by Ludovico Einaudi. The title translates to "the waves," and the music is just so. The piano notes seem to just roll over one another to form a very calming aura of music. The song picks up and lets you down at just the right times.

Can You Stand the Rain - Finishing up strongly with Boyz II Men! Yes, this song fits quite well with RainyMood. A slow melody performed by the smoothest boy band ever. Complete with finger-snapping and perfect-pitch vocals, this is definitely a tune to try out.

Hopefully you have heard of this site before and this post is simply reminding you or getting you a few more good songs. If you have never used this site before, wow! You really haven't? You serious? Geez man...

Center Your Icons and Stacks in Windows 7

One of the most annoying aspects I found with my toolbar buttons was not being able to move them. I found the lack of movability quite disturbing. I knew there had to be a way, but where to start?

Start here:

1) Make an empty folder somewhere it will not be disturbed. I kept mine in My Documents next to my Stacks folder.
2) Make sure your toolbar is unlocked, right-click Toolbars and then New Toolbar. Select your empty folder and continue.
3) Right-click on your new toolbar icon and uncheck Show Text and Show Title. This makes the toolbar icon invisible.
4) Now just move the icon around as you want, adding other icons and/or stacks to the right of the invisible toolbar icon.

You can use this method of moving your icons to the center, or wherever along the toolbar. Some folks like to use their wallpaper in conjunction with their icons, so the center might not be the best option. Experiment and see what works for you!

I have a slight OCD condition which forced me to spend an hour or two measuring the centering of my icons down to the millimeter, but now I get all the chicks coming up to me wondering how my desktop looks so sleak. My results are not normal for all users, your experience may vary.

Create Stacks in Windows 7

One of the things Windows 7 is missing is the highly popular stack function found in other operating systems (I refuse to type them). I prefer my desktop to have easy access to commonly used programs, but I also do not want the desktop cluttered with dozens of icons. A few icons on the desktop are perfectly fine, but I'm no Jabroni when it comes to cleanliness. Therefore, I went on a virtual quest in search of the perfect method of using stacks in Windows 7.

I wanted stacks and I wanted them to look awesome. Too many folks had screenshots of stacks in weird places, like above their toolbars, off to the side, or even free floating around the desktop. This did not suit my purposes well. If it cannot look decent, I would not bother.

Luckily I found a way. Now, there are a few programs that can create stacks, which are essentially shortcuts listing other shortcuts: Win7Stack7stack, and Piles for Windows to name several. I prefer Win7Stack as it has a simpler interface and it lists icons in a smoother interface. It is also extremely easy to use your own icon image instead of pre-programmed Windows icons. Find one of the above you like, download, install, and move on.
Next you need to make your stack folders. Each program needs you to make a folder with all the shortcuts in it first. Name the folder whatever you want it to show when you click it. I have folders called Office, Adobe, GIS, CAD, Toolz, Maintenance, and Game time, each with their respective shortcuts. Also, include your icon file in each folder as well. I store all my stacks in a folder called Stacks in My Documents, along with some Start orbs as well.

Now it is time to make your stacks. Find your stack folder's and icon's path, then click "Create link on Desktop," or the equivalent on other software. Mess around with the the different styles to see what you prefer. I prefer the default settings as they are simple, unintrusive, and smooth.

That is it for today's post. Remember to have the stack icon image you want to use converted to .ICO extension. PNGs might work, but not as well as ICO. Tomorrow we will show you a couple tricks to formatting stacks onto the toolbar.

Stealth Drinking Part 2 - At the Public Beach

(continued from here) It's that time again, time to be social in public. It is great that you finally get to hit the beach, but oh how the people you are going with are uninteresting. They're the ones who always bring too many chairs, blankets, parasols, and water bottles. The kind of folks you're surprised are able to leave the house knowing they will be unable to bring the entire pantry or the family Wii. Well, luckily for you, you do not have to bear it sober, again.

Most beaches you will find are not alcohol-friendly. Some beaches have ATV-riding lifeguards specifically patrolling for alcohol consumption. If you bring a cooler thinking you can at least have a few cold ones while the rest of your group small talks about their menial problems at the office, think again. You'll probably end up sober, ticketed, and escorted off the beach. With that in mind, here's what you have to do...

1) Pack lightly if you're planning on bringing beer specifically. You'll need all the room you can get, plus you don't want to look like a tool with thirty bottles of sunscreen, do you?

2) Figure out which liquor to bring: beer, wine, or distilled beverages. This will determine how you will hide said beverage. The harder the liquor, the easier it will be.

3) Do not pass off your supplies with someone else. It's much easier to get caught if you have to ask a buddy to pass you your "stealthed" alcohol beverage instead of you having it within arm's reach. You will be safer if you undertake this task alone.

Weapon of Choice - Again, this post is not just to tell you to bring a brown paper bag for your liquor. You are reading this because you want something less conspicuous. In general, you want to use only items commonly found at the beach.We have a few suggestions tried and tested.

1) Sunblock bottle - My personal favorite. Good size bottles hold 6 - 10 oz. Since one shot is usually 1.5 oz, that means a sunblock bottle hold between 4 - 6 shots, enough for a fun time. It is probably the most commonly brought item too, making it one of the most inconspicuous options. Just wash it out, fill it up with a plunger or non-needle syringe (think ear or nose cleaning), and cap it off. Store it next to your sammiches.

2) Soda can - Yes, the common soda can works once again. Soda is a highly trafficked item at the beach and you would not seem out of place for drinking out of one. For better measure, dig a small hole for your can to be parked in while you are away or if someone notices you drinking massive amounts of "soda."

3) Contact lens solution bottle - It is becoming more common to see people with contacts bring their solution. This is especially useful for waterparks where you cannot bring label-less sports bottles through customs. Use this to your advantage. Most regular size solution bottles are 10 oz and over. This means a solution bottle holds 2 - 3 glasses of wine, you classy connoisseur. Save a Riesling for us, ya hear?

4) Camelback - To finish up, we also suggest using a CamelBak or the equivalent off-brand for storing larger quantities of alcoholic beverages beer. Each pack holds 1 - 3 L, thus making CamelBack an option for beer or wine. You will have to use a cooling pack or ice because it only holds its temperature for an hour or so. It is marketed to fight dehydration, so who's to question your constant sipping? No one, that's who.

Proper Etiquette - By handling yourself in just the right way, you can take an “illegal” and “socially unacceptable” act and come out a classy jerk, drinking chardonnay in everybody's face without anyone having the slightest clue as to what you're up to.

1) Hold your alcohol - Getting visibly smashed is the easiest way to give yourself up. Know your limits and you can have a good time while maintaining the guise of soberness.

2) Don't brag - This one is very important. If you are constantly telling stories about your conquests, people will know your techniques and see right through your future attempts. Plus, you know there are haters out there and they will actively try to get you caught, so be safe and cover your bases. Try to live like the masked superhero. People know you're out there and your friends all tell stories of your legend but you never reveal yourself. Thus you live to drink another day.

Protect Your Blog and Adsense Account

First off, this post is a bit of a deviation from our normal hobby/interest posts. Recently there has been some suspicious activity with the blog and Adsense. This forced us to do a bit of research on what to do for these situations. We might as well pass the knowledge onto you.

1) Go to your Adsense account (easy if you use Gmail) and figure out if you're in the old or new format. New format is set as the default for all new accounts and there is growing pressure not to use the old format.

2) On the Account Settings option, select Access and Authorization. Here is where some problems with Adsense occur. Select "Only allow certain sites," and then input your blog's URL. You really don't want to allow others to use your ads on sites you know nothing about, so don't leave it open. This seems like a huge hole in security on Google's part, and they leave it up to the user to figure out.

3) Make sure only people you know are Editors or have Admin privileges for your blog. Simple enough, but sometimes you might grant Editor status to someone for one post and then you forget they still have it.

4) Emergency reports. If you're like us and notice suspicious activity, you'll want to report it (several times) to Adsense. Invalid Click report page, Policy Violation report page, and Adsense Ban Appeal form are pages worth taking a look at depending on your situation.

5) Take proactive measures. "Click bombing" and other invalid activity happens quite often apparently. The best thing to do is be proactive and have measures prepared to deal with it. My method is to use a third-party statistics recorder. A popular one is StatCounter. Just register, configure settings, and add the HTML code to your blog's HTML Widget in the Design page. It can record all the information you'll need to fight back.

That is all for today. We were planning on finishing up part 2 of our Stealth Drinking article as well as getting our Liquor Log started, but I guess that can wait until Monday. Cheers, be prepared, and good luck y'all.

Getting Comfortable with Stock Trading

All right, hopefully you have an idea of what to look for when picking the right stock to flip. The trading game used to be all about investing for long periods of time and knowing when to cash out, but nowadays it's about taking quick profit and exiting. Only mutual funds, IRAs, and retirement plans should be invested in for long term causes (incubator funds as well, but we don't have that much money to play with, amirite?).

Follow a decent stock for as long as it takes to be able to predict movement throughout a typical day, preferably one recommended on several reputable forums. Profitable picks in my past have been ones I noticed did better at certain parts of the day (selling time) and dropped at other times (buying time, lunch hours are a key time). After I got confident predicting movement, I stayed at my computer the whole time my money was floating around.

                               Intraday movement of Google stock (06/22/11)

There are two options we're concerned with when putting in a buy/sell order: Limit and Market. Market orders mean you want in fast and limit orders mean you are fine waiting for a certain price. I have never had a market order because I don't invest on the spot. Always use limit orders to be safe. Quick money can be made with market orders as they take priority in trades, just know what is at stake.

Another part of an order you need to know is your qualifier. You'll usually see AON or a blank spot. AON means "all or nothing," meaning your trade won't go through unless your order is completed in one trade. This is fine for smaller orders or large volume trading. It severely inhibits trading with pennies however, as quite a few trades require several go-arounds to fill an entire order. This may take an hour or several hours.

A last few pieces of advice for today are to know standards among online traders. It's usually slow trading around 12-1 PM Eastern time, due to lunch time for the big guys in charge. Stocks are usually uncertain during this time and not a great time to sell. Power Hour is a term for the last hour of trading for the day during normal hours, which is 3:30 - 4:30 PM Eastern time. Big swings happen during this time as well and heavily influences the next day's trading. If it spikes up during this time, it's a bet on investors that the stock will spike early the next day. If you think so as well, put a limit order in and chose GTC instead of DAY. GTC means "good 'til cancelled," and DAY means the trade is good for that trading day only. Use GTC if you think you can predict price movement decently.

If you're looking for a standard day to buy a stock cheap, check out the price on Fridays. Fridays are notorious for drops in PPS (price per share). I have no certain idea why, but folks say investors don't want to hold their shares over the weekend and will sell at a lower price.

See that money moving around in the market? Go out there, do some research, learn how to grab it, and do not let go. Thanks to the internet, anyone can do it.

Stock Trading Sites - Cheap and Decent

Continued from the other day, we're listing some decent and cheap trading sites. Now understand that since these are cheap to trade on, your best bet is to do your own DD outside and only use their site to make your trades. A trade from any of these sites = a trade from any highly advertised site. Since every complete trade needs two fees (purchase/sell), these sites save you at least $10 per complete trade. This is great since you're probably not playing with much to begin with.

                                      Level 2 Stock Quotes from 06/21/11

Here they are. You want cheap right? Of course you do, here are the ones we've looked up that are reputable, cheap, and have decent customer service:

Choicetrade: My favorite but not the greatest. Getting an account takes a couple days. You have to print out some papers and mail them in snail-mail style. At like $5 a trade, it's pretty decent. There are no extra fees for penny stocks. I don't use the site's researching platforms however. It's incredibly simple in its design, which I like because a confusing looking trade site can be dangerous when making on-the-spot trade decisions.

Zecco: I had an account with them at first, but switched because I didn't qualify for one of their promotional offers. If you add a decent amount of money into your account, you get so many free trades monthly. Not bad, but you're probably not going to be playing with several thousand dollars. $5 a trade as well ($7 for penny stocks). Nothing great about their trading platform, but that doesn't really matter. They do give incentives for having referrals. If you are great at getting referrals, you'll end up getting $75 per referral.

Tradeking: One of the better platforms with cheap trades ($5), but I traded penny stocks at the time and they tacked on some new fee for stocks less than a penny per share, which drove me away. Nowadays, it's .01 per share or 5%, whichever is less. I still use their research platform even without using them for transactions though. They also have an inactivity fee, so be careful if you open an account.

Scottrade: A decent broker site with free Level 2 (L2), which normally costs around $20 monthly elsewhere. That access to live knowledge can save/make you some money. Although their trades are $7 each (with extra fees for stocks under $1), I'd still use this for highly active, low value stocks above $1. At least use it for the L2.

Sharebuilder: Another decent broker site with a decent platform. I put this one at the bottom of the list because trades are $10 each unfortunately. The good news is there are no extra fees for penny stocks and you have the option for automatic investments if you want to use it. Also, no minimum investment!

Any individually will do fine, as will a combo. To sum up, the most important things you'll want from the trading sites you have accounts with are: cheap trade fees, no extra fees per share (as used to be common with pennies), immediate customer service (some have chat features you login to quickly and are immediately introduced to a representative), no history of blocking trades (some sites refuse trades with certain companies, particularly penny stocks and high-profile, crashing stocks), ease of moving trading accounts (some are harder than others to close), and the overall simplicity of the site.

That's all for today, tomorrow we'll continue again with some tips of what to do when you think you've found a good "gamble," I mean "investment." Continued here.

Research Stocks, Bonds, and Forex After Class!

So you have some free time and want to make some money. In college, there's a lot of ways to put together some booze money, but few are interesting. We're going to explain some of our methods we use when researching stocks to flip. Obviously, now's the time for a disclaimer even though it would be all your fault if you messed up anyways: WE'RE NOT TRAINED OR LICENSED INVESTORS, I BARELY PASSED ECON 102.

Penny stocks is the game. Yep, that's it, let your groans out now. No reputable magazine has ever said penny stocks were great to throw your money at and invest in, but here's the catch: we're not going to be investing. The only thing you'll read here today is how we flip stocks quickly, normally within a day or a week at most. Never "invest" in a penny stock unless you're part of the company.

Sample of what can happen within a day. The reverse can happen just as easily

First thing you need to figure out is how much you're going to gamble or "invest." For what we're about to write, several hundred dollars is fairly standard. Any more than that and you'll want to invest in better alternatives. I started out with $400 my first time and it worked out nicely.

The most important part of trading/flipping these stocks is doing your Due Diligence (DD). This includes knowing what the company does, how they make money, how often they update their PRs, whether they address shareholders often, etc. I typically look for a company that has been around for at least two years, has at least three PRs a month, and doesn't have a history of reverse-splits.

Never put money into a penny stock that has reverse-splits in its history, it means they dilute their shares. Also try not to invest in sub-penny stocks, in which each share is less than a penny. For instance, BGOI as of Friday ( is .0011 pps (price per share). Unless they have news saying something big is coming, and be cautious if they do, don't put money in sub-pennies.

After getting used to what to look for, here are some basics to flipping. Don't think you can get more when you actually make a profit. Take your profit and run. A decent flip on a penny stock is between 20-50%. Any more and you're risking a lot, though you do have a lot to gain. I typically have my orders set to making 30% profit while I'm in class or when I'm away from the internet during a trading day.

To get you more informed, here are a few sites I use when doing research:

Hot Stock Market - best forum I've come across for info on any stock. I heed their advice more often than other sites. Also, their "Trade journals and stock tips" section is quite helpful.

IHUB - be cautious about this forum. You'll see a lot of spam, but also occasionally you'll see some good findings members post. A good post will show their source. This site also tends to find the phone number of the company's TA (transfer agent) so you can call yourself to find info.

Common trading terms - I bookmarked this site long ago so I can easily go to the page, CTRL + F my term, and then find a definition quickly. You'll come across a lot of trading terms when in the forums, this site makes it easy to translate.

Abbreviations - as with terms, there are huge amounts of abbreviations used on forums and sites as well. This site's search option makes finding a term from an abbreviation really quite simple.

That's all for today, tomorrow we'll detail some of the sites we have found are great for small-time traders who want cheap and want results. Later, and happy trading! Continued here.