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Yes, I’ve finally bought the game – on sale now: only USD0.99! Simply can’t resist it.

I basically enjoy playing most time-management games. I’ve got Sally’s Salon; I’ve got Sally’s Spa; Now I have Supermarket Mania! All bought at the price USD 0.99! Great deal!

Supermarket Mania… well, after playing Sally’s Salon and Sally’s Spa, I managed to get Excellent (there’re two ranks: Day Completed or Excellent – obviously Excellent requires more “skills") in all levels except one: 5-7 Customers Waiting. It took me like two days or three playing through it for I-don’t-remember-how-many times, and still just couldn’t get it! Then I googled it and found someone suggesting one pretty silly and time consuming method but it worked!

So, what’s game about? It’s basically about being a shop keeper. The job is to 1) keep shelves full. If it runs out of stock, customers will only wait for a limited time then they’ll leave the shop; 2) pick up garbages made by teenagers who love throwing things off the shelves – you can stop them by touching the shop guard. If a customer gets tripped over by a garbage, he/she will leave the shop ; 3) catch thieves – touch the guard when the icon above the thieves is shaking then the thieves will pay for it.

There’s a bonus function that will make all customers in the shop go clear the shelves like crazy. It’s available in most levels, but not all. When it’s there, it certainly helps reaching the Excellent requirement.

That’s it! Simple and straight forward.

The problem about level 5-7 is there’s no bonus function there. There’re three thieves and I managed to catch them all. Still, the best I could get was around $2130 but I need $2300 to meet Excellent. So, I followed that rather stupid trick found in a game forum and yet still couldn’t get it.

Ok, the trick is this: Don’t stop the teenagers from throwing things of the shelves. Each garbage worths $1. Let them run around but make sure no customer gets tripped over. In the end, one teenager will stay behind after the shop is closed. He will keep throwing things around and you just keep picking up the garbages. He will keep throwing and throwing… you just keep picking things up.

I tried it quite a number of times but that teenager doesn’t always stay behind! Eventually, there was this time that he’s finally staying behind but then he doesn’t throw things around long enough to let me earn enough money. Then several trials later, I finally have this boy stays behind like forever! I started picking garbage up from somewhere around $1870. And I just keep picking up all the way till it goes up to around $2250. $2250-$1870=$380! Which means… I’ve made 380+ touches to pick up all the garbages (putting the garbages into the bin requires one more touch)! It must have taken like 5 minutes just for picking the garbages!

It was a painful process… but hey, now I’ve got Excellent in all levels! LOL





(Predestined salvation is one of the recurrent topics in our Precept group. Somehow we will get into this topic almost whatever book we are studying. And now we’re in Revelation and this topic was discussed in the group again today. And then I wrote this… And just as anything I’ve written on the topic of Faith, my understanding may change over time.)
Some say that God predestined, before the beginning of time, who is saved and who is not. They say Salvation is predestined (quoting Paul mostly).
If so, then all believers are just gambling against a predestination, hoping that we’re in that book of life.
But if not, is Paul wrong?
Well, let’s take a look at the word “predestined". This word is “time-bounded". It is only valid in a world where there is time. So, it is only applicable to human sense, not God. (NB: God is beyond time. If your God is not, well, we don’t share the same God. Period. And if you don’t believe there’s a God in the world, we’re not on same channel. Period.)
If God is beyond time, the phrase “before the beginning of time" is not applicable to God. He knows who is saved “at the end" because He is hlbeyond time. He has been to all time frames of the world, may it be before the beginning or after the end of the world. So He is not foretelling who is saved in the end. He is only narrating what has already happened in the sence of eternity and will happen in human understanding. It is hard to explain in human language because human languages are ruled by syntax which always include tense forms in some way. And that’s why there is this phrase “before the beginning of time".
So, what does it have to do with 12 Monkeys? James Cole didn’t know that his efforts to save the world is in vain because he (and the scientists “in the future") is bounded by time. Though he can travel through time, he doesn’t know concurrently what’s going on in both the past and the future. That’s human. We know something is going to happen as the Bible tells so but we were not in the past and we have not been to the future. Even if we were and have, we can only see the the things that happen in the time and space we are capable of perceiving. It’s never the whole picture that we see. God is the maker of 12 Monkeys: He knew the whole story before the movie is made. Unlike the spectators who only know the beginning is the very end after the whole movie is shown, God knew it all along.
And unlike the spectators who can only sit by and watch what is going to happen, God has offered a way out since before the beginning of time.

P.S. And talking about Paul, I must admit that I don’t like his writings. People say he’s a good debater. I simply don’t see his logic (well, sometimes I do but that’s rare). Maybe I need to be a 1st century Jew to understand his arguments. I don’t know. Still struggling. All in all, the Bible is hard to be understood anyways.

P.P.S. Another often recurrent topic in group discussion is works and deeds and salvation. May write on that if I have time.

Today is June 4, 2009.

The 20th year.

六月 2009
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