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> A Trip That Has Changed My Life, Something i had to do for school.
paulii
post Jun 10 2008, 04:34 PM
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A story that has changed my life

I wouldnt say I was a model student back then, actually, far from it. My main interest in my life was my social life and I only lived for the weekends. Once Friday and Saturday night came, my presence would be rare at home, only to eat, shower, sleep and get changed. My friends were my life and my only priority was where I was going and how drunk I would get. I would be constantly asking my parents for money, $50- $100 each time and that wouldnt even last me throughout the night, you have cigarettes and alcohol to purchase, entry into clubs/bars, taxis, a late night McDonalds fill up and so on, in the end everything adds up and karma decides to chase after you.

My life was in the fast lane, exhilarating, going to new places, meeting new people, doing new things gave me a euphoria feeling, a natural ecstasy, a natural high. I do believe this is why it was so addictive, after a while, you start to crave it, and when the weekend comes, you try to out do last weeks feeling, make it stronger, last longer. Be me telling you this story of mine, is not in any way associated with bragging how fantastic my social life was, but rather a learning experience.
In the back of my mind I always held onto the thought Paul, this will not last forever, have your fun now, but pull up your socks. You cant keep living like this.
But why I thought, Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan do this every week end, but I dismissed one fact, they are adults and entirely responsible for their own lives. I was still a minor, still under the care of my parents. This also raises another issue, I could see and sense the fear my mother had each time I walked out that door, the anxious waiting until I got home, whenever that might have been. How long could I keep doing this to her? I couldnt care about my father, just her.

Mid last year, my mother announced two life changing things, here I am thinking I am going to be institutionalised because of my behaviour, but thankfully not. My mum told my sister and I we would be going to Greece for 7 weeks. Once I heard this, I was ecstatic, I wanted to jump over the moon. Last time I went to Greece I was ten years old, we were only there for three weeks. We went on a camp, it was fully paid for by the Greek and Australian government, at this time, my cousins and I were all at the same age and we all went together. As ten year olds, this was the first time we were departing from our parents for such a long time, but with support from each other, we got through it and loved every moment of it.
The second life changing announcement was my mother was six weeks pregnant. I cried when mum told me, the books would be re-written for our family; I was going to have another sibling, another extension of the family. For days after, even months I still couldnt comprehend that my mother was pregnant.




We purchased our tickets for Greece and on the 2nd of September, at 7.30pm, Emirates Flight Ek407 would be taking us to Europe. Here I am thinking this is going to be a chance to party European style every night until the day I leave. Yes I was partly right, but very, very wrong at the same time. The flight time in total was 22-23 hours, so I had plenty of time to think. I had memories and pictures flooding my mind from my first trip, I tried to picture Greece, but as a ten year old, I didnt take much in of the scenery. All I kept thinking Greece would be like was all farms, ancient buildings and dilapidated ones. I had this image because of all the stories my grandparents told me from the wars.

On arrival to Greece, I was in complete awe, Athens had some magnificent scenery, Their airport was very beautiful, buildings were very modern and ancient, sure you had some of your really old ones, but thats beside the point.

My journey and story doesnt actually start off until we arrive in Northern Greece, Thessaloniki, or for shorter, Salonica. Salonica is Greeces second largest city, here I met some of my cousins and this is where we would be staying. As soon as we came, we were welcomed with the most warmest of love, most open arms. We were put straight away to eat, we spoke for hours, exchange photos, stories, talking about my uncles growing up as a child and why he never moved to Australia like the rest of his siblings did ( like my grandmother.) after we finished our massive discussion, my cousins were like hurry up and get ready, we are going out.
Over there, its normal for their nights to start off at 12-1am, which is when we left. We went to just a chill out bar because my cousins knew we were extremely exhausted after a six hour bus trip and didnt want to over do it with pumping music. Within a couple of minutes arriving we all had ordered our first drinks, within 10 20 minutes my sister and I had finished our drinks and ordered more. Again 10 minutes had gone past and we were ordering more, my cousins looked at us to say what the hell are you doing? Why are you drinking so fast? I responded isnt this the way you all drink over here? Skull and start dancing? then my cousin replied had we been at a wedding, our a christening, possibly yes, but never, ever whilst your out clubbing.
I was taken abit back because this was the only way I knew how to drink, nearly everyone drinks the way my sister and I did in Australia. As we started to go out more often, I started to limit my drinking considerably, I started to take my time drinking, a new concept, you cant get drunk this way, youre allowing your body to process the alcohol, and you have a much better time if your sober, have a fantastic crowd with you, awesome music and instead of feeling sorry for yourself being drunk.

The next couple of days my uncle took us into the villages, where they all grew up, you could see all the farms, all the livestock, things hadnt changed for over 50 years in those little towns, why would they? Only the old folk live there. My uncle showed us the house where the 6 of his siblings and himself grew up in. In that time, it was considered one of the most beautiful houses in the village, now; its a house just barely standing.
As soon as we went into the house, you couldnt see the walls, they were taken over by pictures, my great grandmother had pictures of all her children growing up, all us grandchildren, I was shocked to see pictures of my sister and myself in there, I couldnt help but cry, even though my great grandmother is no longer with us, and we lived half way across the world, we were only a photograph away. The house had a beautiful and loving energy about it, even though no one had lived in it for over 30 years,
you could still feel the raising of 7 children, through times of war and poverty, despair and earthquakes, it retained its elegance.

On the hour trip back to Salonica, I started to think, Greece is where my roots are. My blood, my soul originate from these lands, my ancestors fought and lost their lives to protect this precious soil, my grandparents fled from Greece not because they wanted to, but against their own free will, to rid of themselves from the war and poverty, start a new life in Australia, so their kids, and future generations would never ever have to experience the hardship they did.

When I look at the way of life in Greece, their life style, their social life, not one country in the world would be able to bet it. Greece is renown for its party atmosphere. Yet, at the same time, people struggle, top education can only be afforded by the rich, many people are on minimum wages here and yet still find a way to make a decent living.

When they say Australia is one of the luckiest countries, it really is. Us teenagers here have everything at our disposal, yet we choice to limit ourselves because everything is too hard. Our education is one of the best in the world and we have endless of opportunities to make something of ourselves. In Greece, every child goes to school, but the opportunities are very limited, only the best of the best are selected.

After coming back, I just couldnt believe the experience I had, the knowledge gained, seeing a different society and environment to mine and the way of life.

This holiday has seriously opened up my eyes, and switched on the light bulb in my head again.

Im trying to be a good student this year, not to prove to my parents anything, but to myself. I know I have what it takes; I know I have the potential to do anything that I want. Its all about positive thinking, positive thinking is not an easy thing to do.
It is not a decision, it is a practice and daily behavior, I am leaning step by step
and the more I learn, the more I feel stronger. Had I not been to Greece, I doubt I would be in the mind frame and mentality I am in now.
This really has changed my outlook on life.





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Χριστάρας
post Jun 10 2008, 05:47 PM
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good onya re

it takes courage to rethink your lifestyle and to change
mprabo sou


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niko
post Jun 10 2008, 06:19 PM
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Hahahaha, 50 to 100 bucks a night, poly life in the fast lane. Paris Hilton must be freaking out at your lifestyle, she only blows 10 grand in a quiet night when she's just on the coke.

I have a few points:

Firstly, if you have such a better time when you're sober, why drink at all?

Secondly, the Greeks drink way more than anyone I know over here and they get smashed hard, they just know how to take their alcohol unlike the morons over here. I think your cousins were just soft, think of how romanticised drinking is in Greek music and culture. Fair enough they won't go smash 10 Jagers in 5 minutes to get fucked up but they drink hard

Finally, if you think the Greek kids have it bad in terms of opportunities, wait til you're at uni. It's bad enough for me in third year looking at a massive HECS debt and ridiculous house prices, oncoming recession and massive interest rates coupled with average wages climbing so so slowly, it'll just be worse for you.

I'm not trying to have a go, cool that you had a change of heart about shit but your lifestyle wasn't even bad in the first place. If 50 bucks a night including smokes and Maccas is worrying you then you're just being a little too cautious, it's not uncommon to spend 2 or 3 hundred in a night and that's not living like Tony Montana, that's just the price of drinks and taxis. Xalara mate

EDIT:

$50 - $10 for smokes - $15ish for entry - $7 for maccas - $15 for a cab = how the fuck do you manage to buy a drink at all?

This post has been edited by niko: Jun 10 2008, 06:29 PM


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sextoyjimi
post Jun 10 2008, 07:37 PM
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Pauli next time you have a life changing epiphany try make it involve growing a pair of balls.
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niko
post Jun 10 2008, 07:51 PM
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HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA


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Vicky
post Jun 11 2008, 12:40 PM
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Paulii.. Ignore Wanker 1 & Wanker 2, Getting shit faced every weekend, being broke and doing poorly at school is ok for some people.


I think it's really nice that you decided to change how you go about life.. Everyone does at one point and thats when you realise that being childish won't get you anywhere in life and it's better to realise it sooner rather than later smile.gif



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Pat__
post Jun 11 2008, 01:05 PM
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well "wanker 1" does seem to have a bit of a point vakina....


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Epicurus
post Jun 11 2008, 04:40 PM
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The current culture of Greece is one of solipsism & hedonism.
If you've ever seen a child in Greece talk about politics with an air of confidence above his years and thought that was indicitive of intelligence, you're dead wrong.
What it is indicative of, is a culture that says private feelings and emotions are more valuable than evidence and logic.
Try pressing one of these "smart" Greek children for reasons they support ND or PASOK and their answer will be along the lines of "Karamanli is a malaka". The current Greek culture is producing children who; aren't open to changing their opinions, don't believe evidence has any value and are obnoxiously arrogant.

The short-sightedness of Greeks has caught up with them though.
The lazy "pay me to do nothing" attitude has created a pension system that will collapse under its own weight in 20 years if nothing is done now, it has created the most inefficient work force in Europe and has created an education system that is grossly behind the EU average. Scandinavian children, on average, know more about Greek schools of philosophy and are better at Maths and Science.

National Geographic did a poll in 2005 about European Support for Evolution.
It came back with a result whereby just under 50% of Greeks believe in evolution, 40% do not and 10% are not sure.
4,000,000 Greeks do not believe in something that is pretty much a fact!
Compare this to Scandinavia again and >85% believe in evolution and only 5% are unsure.
The Greek education system and culture are creating children (who become adults) that are comparatively devoid of any real intelligence.

The Australian economy, career opportunities, education system and culture far out-strip Modern Greece.
There are many reasons for this, one reason is that Australia has been welcoming to new ideas whereas Greece still wants to maintain a "Greece for Greeks" limiting migration to make sure Greece is almost entirely ethnically Greek.
It is no surprise then, that the higher educated nations and wealthier nations have welcomed a diverse range of migrants who greatly contributed to the success of that nations academic and economic institutions to mutual benefit.

I'm sure many of Greeks will rally-up a defence for Greece, even say it is better in every regard - in a manner much like the Greek child mentioned above.
But the longer you choose to ignore the problems in Greece, the worst they get.
For a nation that lives of the fame of its founders, try embracing the attributes that made Ancient Greece great.

This is what made Ancient Greece so great (and is making Scandinavian nations so great today); secular-humanist governance, reverence and respect for evidence above all else & intellectual honesty.
None of which can be found in the Byzantine fall-out that is modern Greece.

This post has been edited by Epicurus: Jun 11 2008, 04:40 PM


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paulii
post Jun 11 2008, 05:47 PM
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Niko, what i wrote wasnt even half of it.
For a 14 15 year old to be gettin $100 on friday and $100 on a saturday night, who wasnt working, and blowing it on cigarettes, alcohol, food, taxis' ect every single week end, for about a year, do the math. Most parents would tell their kids to get fucked asking for that kind of money on a weekly basis.

I wasnt comparing my lifestyle to hilton or lohan, just making an analysis. How do they do it every week, let alone every night? they have money to burn and they are adults.

I should have probably made the drinking a little more clear, because my cousins were driving all the time, no, they didnt drink as much, but when we would stay home, watching movies and talking shit, then yes, thats when we would O.D on alcohol and get blinde.

The glendi night before my cousins wedding, everyone drunk to oblivion yes.
But when we went out, i may have not been noticing much, but it was probably that very, very small minority that would drink to get pissed, everyone around me would drink all night, but pace their drinking, over time ect.

In regards to the uni, fuck, thats fucking rediculous.
My sisters friend had to drop outta uni, she just couldnt afford it anymore.

Thanks and Vicky smile.gif

Epicurus, you have some really interesting facts in there.
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niko
post Jun 11 2008, 06:54 PM
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That just means your parents are too loose with their money, it doesn't mean you were living like Guns n Roses or something. Seriously, chill.

Also, I don't understand your original point about the Greeks' drinking in light of your second post


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sextoyjimi
post Jun 12 2008, 08:12 PM
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QUOTE
National Geographic did a poll in 2005 about European Support for Evolution.
It came back with a result whereby just under 50% of Greeks believe in evolution, 40% do not and 10% are not sure.
4,000,000 Greeks do not believe in something that is pretty much a fact!


Evolution is by no means a fact. At all. Also I doubt that all 10million greeks took part in the survey or that it is a reflection of the overall intelligence of the country.
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niko
post Jun 12 2008, 08:16 PM
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Tell me that the Big Bang theory and evolutions are any more believable than Genesis and I'll laugh in your face. And I don't believe in any of them


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Epicurus
post Jun 12 2008, 08:45 PM
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Firstly, no poll interviews 100% of people - it takes a sample size. Your argument that not all were interviewed holds no weight.
100% of Finns or Germans weren't interviewed either. Which means the same margin of error associated with Greece applies to all interviewed.
Secondly, when on religious grounds some 40% of Greeks reject Evolution - it is a good indicator of the overall level of intelligence compared to the rest of Europe. Any rational student who knew how to observe and draw unbiased conclusions would support Evolution.

Looking back when Greece was the shining beacon of academia, several attributes were prominent in the academic community and permeated down to mainstream society as well.
These (now missing) attributes are making other nations as educated; and as scientifically advanced as their currency will allow.
Having already listed these attributes; let me state by their absence in Greece, presence in the Scandinavian bloc and comparative grades - we can safely conclude that at least it is a cause of the relatively poor academia.

As to your assertion about evolution is 'by no means a fact' I hope you're not advocating "ID creationism", which is neither Science nor Truth.
Thousands upon thousands of fossils all corroborate Evolution, many of those fossils are in transitional form; and The Theory of Evolution is testable and makes millions of accurate predictions. For example, Whales descended from land animals and the Theory of Evolution predicts what you would need to see to test this. As it turns out, Whale foetus' develop hind lengs in the early development phase and grown Whales have a pelvis, which further corroborates Evolution as the only theory of diverse life.

No Scientific theory is 100% truth, this applies to gravity also, but Evolution is just as reliable as the Theory of Gravity or the Germ Theory.
Evolution is probably 99.9% probable given the vast evidence we have, given no alternative theory exists we may as well round up and accept the truth.
Further to the point, our telescopes are not powerful enough to gaze closely at the planets of the Andromeda Galaxy, when one says "Pick unicorns do not live in the Andromeda region" should we all say; "well, this is not a fact!". Although a small chance exists, for reasons of rationality we do not concern ourselves with the small margin of doubt. For this reason, not one person should say they do not believe in Evolution.


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sextoyjimi
post Jun 13 2008, 04:58 AM
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QUOTE
4,000,000 Greeks do not believe in something that is pretty much a fact!


Youre making a big assumption there considering you dont know where the sample was taken from, by what means or under what circumstances. Im not saying Greece isn't behind Scandinavian countries in terms of academia but you can't conclude this from one single study on the belief of one particular theory. Your basically saying that anyone who doesnt believe in the theory of evolution is narrow minded and stupid which is absurd. The theory has not been proven with no element of doubt which precludes it from being a statement of fact. Evolution has never been observed to take place in a controlled environment (lab) so its perfectly feasible for someone to question it. This is why its a THEORY.

As for your argument that all current evidence points to the theory being correct the same could be said about the world being flat 500 years ago or the thousands of other theories that have been superseded over the years. The recent discovery of the mini humans in (papua new guinea?) put a whole new spin on the theory and who knows what other discoveries will be made in the future. Besides, everyone knows that we came from adam and eve anyway...

One evoution that can be proven and quantified however is that of pauli. From a high rolling, big spending hedonist he has evolved into a visionary and an inspiration for us all. You go little man!
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Epicurus
post Jun 13 2008, 11:22 AM
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QUOTE (sextoyjimi @ Jun 13 2008, 04:28 AM) *
You’re making a big assumption there considering you don’t know where the sample was taken from, by what means or under what circumstances. I’m not saying Greece isn't behind Scandinavian countries in terms of academia but you can't conclude this from one single study on the belief of one particular theory. Your basically saying that anyone who doesn’t believe in the theory of evolution is narrow minded and stupid which is absurd. The theory has not been proven with no element of doubt which precludes it from being a statement of fact. Evolution has never been observed to take place in a controlled environment (lab) so its perfectly feasible for someone to question it. This is why its a THEORY.

As for your argument that all current evidence points to the theory being correct the same could be said about the world being flat 500 years ago or the thousands of other theories that have been superseded over the years. The recent discovery of the mini humans in (papua new guinea?) put a whole new spin on the theory and who knows what other discoveries will be made in the future. Besides, everyone knows that we came from adam and eve anyway...

One evoution that can be proven and quantified however is that of pauli. From a high rolling, big spending hedonist he has evolved into a visionary and an inspiration for us all. You go little man!


I agree that one pole cannot be used to draw conclusions, but I merely said it was one example to support my conclusion.

Secondly, Evolution is pretty much a fact. Anyone who doesn't believe in the Theory of Evolution is narrow minded and stupid, yes that's what I was suggesting; or, they are being intellectually dishonest and choose to ignore a blatant truth to suit some religious agenda, normally to believe in the religious dogma of creation.
Evolution has been observed to take place in a controlled environment; and the fossil records all confirm Evolution.
Also, the occurrence of Chromosome 2 from Chimps to Humans is further testimony to Evolution.

Here are two current examples of evolution:
Here Lizards moved from one Island to another. The scientists noticed the "digestive tracts of the lizards had changed. They were now divided, creating a fermentation chamber where microbes could break down the toughest portions of the plants." Among increased head size and stronger jaws.

Here Ecoli evolved in a Lab to eat Cirate, something that Ecoli cannot process.

So kindly retract your fallacious remarks about Evolution not being a fact.

Also, to the remark "it's just a THEORY".
Scientists don't use Theory the way lay-people do.
To make a theory in science you must; make a hypothesis, test it, re-test it, submit it to your peers to try to disprove it. And if it survives, you have a Theory.
Evolution has survived 150 years of thorough testing.
So yes, it is a fact.

This post has been edited by Epicurus: Jun 13 2008, 01:41 PM


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EOKA ASSASSIN
post Jul 11 2008, 08:48 PM
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Evolution is absolutely not a fact, it is a theory made, that's supported by scientists, largely because it is an alternative to the religious view that the world was created by a creator, even though evolution has so many floors.

Infact when you look at it closely, evolution is proven to be false and laugable.

Therefore I don't see how anyone that doesn't beleive in evolution is narrow minded??

Infact I think by you suggesting this, this makes you the narrow minded one.



So let's look into Evolution and see certain animals as only one example that prove evolution as impossible and false:


Giraffe:

Do you know why the giraffe's brain doesn't explode when he stoops to get a drink of water? Or, why he doesn't pass out when he raises his head back up again? It's because the Giraffe has specially created valves in his neck which close off the enormous flow of blood needed to raise it to the giraffe's great height

The giraffe has a powerful heart almost two feet long to make sure the blood supply gets to his brain. But if he did not have the special valves in his arteries which regulate his blood supply, his brains would explode under the pressure. Also, there is a special sponge underneath the giraffe's brain which absorbs the last pump of blood. Now, when he raises back up, that sponge squeezes that oxygenated blood into his brain, the valves open up, and he doesn't pass out.

Now, could this mechanism have evolved? No way! If the first giraffe had a long neck and two foot long heart, but no mechanism to regulate it, when he first stooped to get a drink of water, he would have blown-up his mind. Then, after he had blown his mind, he would have thought to himself, "I need to evolve valves in my arteries to regulate this!" No, he would have already been dead! The giraffe's long neck couldn't have evolved; it needed to be completely functional in the first place.
All the giraffes that would of stooped their heads, would of blown-up their heads and all have died out.




continued:

This post has been edited by EOKA ASSASSIN: Jul 13 2008, 04:17 PM


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EOKA ASSASSIN
post Jul 11 2008, 08:58 PM
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Woodpeekers:

Some birds have unique structures that enable them to perform specialized functions in nature.

The woodpecker is such an example. He has special shock absorbers in his beak and skull providing protection from the severe migraine headaches that might otherwise result from his hazardous occupation.

Imagine all the poor pre-woodpeckers knocking themselves out, getting their beaks stuck in trees until this feature "evolved."

Would their pecks have evolved? Of course not! They would of just kept knocking themselves out, until they all develep brain damage and all die out.


These are just some examples.. There are many more.

This post has been edited by EOKA ASSASSIN: Jul 13 2008, 04:09 PM


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sextoyjimi
post Jul 13 2008, 12:41 PM
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moron both those arguements support evolution especially the woodpecker one.
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niko
post Jul 13 2008, 02:06 PM
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Wow, that's fucking awkward. These are pretty much the same analogies Darwin used to CREATE the theory of evolution... You really have no clue, do you?


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EOKA ASSASSIN
post Jul 13 2008, 04:08 PM
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QUOTE
Wow, that's fucking awkward. These are pretty much the same analogies Darwin used to CREATE the theory of evolution... You really have no clue, do you?



I actually was giving an example of evolution to these animals, but than showing how it would be impossible for evolution to have accured with these animals.

Because these animals would of all died out, particularly the giraffe. Is it that hard to comprehend?



QUOTE
moron both those arguements support evolution especially the woodpecker one



both these arguementa support evolution? Do you want to read it again?
Tell me how they support evolution when both these animals would of all died out if hypothetically evolution was going to accure?
Especially all the giraffes from a head explosion, and all the woodpeakers from brain damage.


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...Greek Nationalist Guerilla Group E.O.K.A...

...its leader Colonel George Grivas...

...E.O.K.A. gunman ''the Turk killer'' Nicos Sampson...


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