Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Don't tell me you weren't expecting this!

OBVIOUSLY I was a Pirate for Halloween this year. Duh.

Magic 97 Morning with 75% More Yarrr!
~Rri is one pretty witch!
~ The most fearsome newsroom ever!...or something... Dono as Spidey, Avan as a confused athlete, and me.
~ Ye'll walk the plank, ye scurvy sea-dog!

Riddle me this...

I'm not sure exactly where I stand on this topic, but it's so obvious and in-your-face these days, I figured I'd comment.
I'm talking about the mentality that surrounds halloween.
Women (particularly those who have just reached bar-age and extending up to mid 20s, with a recurrance if they're single and in their mid 30s) tend to believe that Halloween is simply an excuse to dress in completely trashy costumes. Occupations that are not sexy at all are suddenly made into itsy bitsy costumes that really make me wonder how the companies can charge so much for such little fabric. I'm not just talking about the standard Playboy Bunny, or the Pussycat costumes of the world...I'm refering to the things that aren't usually associated with attractive women. I mean the teensy shorts, tank top (white, obviously), and hard hat that make up a construction worker costume, the one-piece striped jumpsuit that's supposed to look like a referee. Or, even more shocking, the teeny tiny girlguide uniform that women are exploding out of, or the baby clothes that leave very little to the imagination. (I find those particularly disturbing as they are suddenly putting a sexual context onto something that should never be associated with sex under any circumstances).
I know everyone has noticed the trend, and very few men will outwardly protest, however, I have seen more than one raised eyebrow at a visible cheek (and I'm not talking face). The interesting thing that I've noticed, is that while most men seem to be in favor of the ridiculously teeny outfits, the majority of them will make disapproving comments afterwards, and seem to immediately think less of the girl.
On the other side of the fence is the female perspective. With each teeny costume and exploding top, comes one that's snaller, tighter, and more scandalous. The whole process of picking a halloween costume becomes a task of out-doing your friends and what you think the other ladies at the bar will be wearing. It's a matter of trying to be the most scantily clad and the most prostitute-like. Interesting how female competitveness manifests itself, isn't it?
Just some observations really.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Au Pied

It's the wrong season, but I've started walking to work. The weather is still nice and fairly mild, but I say the "wrong season" because it is getting colder with each morning, and soon there will be snow and a full-fledged Saskatchewan winter with biting wind which will make it miserable for walking. I'm making an assumption here, but I figure it's a safe bet. What I'll do then is not entirely certain yet. I might buck up and keep walking, or I might balk at the risk of frostbite and start driving again.
For the time being, however, I'm walking to and from work.
Yesterday I put on my music and walked to Ashley's place across town. It was a beautiful day; so warm I didn't need a jacket at all, and found myself too warm in my long sleeved shirt. The walk home was a little more brisk, but it was beautiful, nonetheless.
There is no denying the city is prepared for winter. The trees are totally bare, the leaves have been collected and removed, and everything has adopted that rich colouring of fall that eventually fades into the greys and whites of winter.
Every morning I get up and get dressed for my chilly walk and hope for one more week of nice weather.

Friday, October 26, 2007

It Starts.

For five minutes this afternoon it snowed.
Now one side of the street is grey and wet, and the other side has sun.
That is all.

Thursday, October 25, 2007


So, like a good responsible adult, I went and got my flu shot today. I've got it every year for the past several years and so far so good. Like they say in the handout, my arm hurts every time. I remember a dull ache; nothing terrible, mostly just like a muscle that's been overused. Today though, my arm caused me terrible discomfort. It ached from my shoulder down to my wrist and hurt so bad I didn't want to do anything but leave it stationary. A couple of hours later though, and the pain has decreased to a dull ache once again.
The sore arm bit sucks big time, but the benefits far outweigh the temporary discomfort in my eyes...and in my line of work. I simply can't afford to be off work for 2-7 days with a fever! Plus I can't afford to get it and give it to Brad (who is also immunized every year, but they aren't a 100% guarantee you won't get it). It just seems reasonable to roll up my sleeve and moan and whine for a while about my arm hurting. Maybe I can get some cheesecake out of this deal...hmmm....genius...

(side note: some people DO have bad side effects from the flu shot and I'm not a doctor, so I'm not advising anyone get it...check it out if you're interested.)

Fashion Sense: Optional

This morning I went to the official opening of the new Canadian Tire building in Swift. The store is fantastic, huge, well lit and inspires shopping (says the shopping addict!). The store opened their doors at 8 and the first two customers (who had been waiting outside and were obviously a couple) entered. Now, I try not to judge based on appearances, so I'll let you make your own decisions. The fellow was wearing...well...these pants. Ok, I'll try to explain them (though there's no way I can truly get the full impact of the pants across using only the English language).
Do you remember those pants that were really popular in the 80s? Elastic waist, tapered leg, usually made of some wild loud cotton fabric? (Zebra print, or bold patterns come to mind) I think they were called Zulu pants. Now, I want you to take that image. Got it? Now make the pants just a touch too small (not as baggy as was the fashion), change the color to cream with a small black lined pattern all over. Now...for the final touch...they were made of a shiny satiny fabric. You know the stuff they make pretty lady's blouses out of? That's the stuff.
I honestly can't even begin to imagine WHERE pants like that could be purchased! I think he was wearing some sort of equally incredible sweater, (that's what Jenna told me anyway) but I couldn't pull my eyes away from the shiny pants. But like I said; no judgement....just utter amazement, really.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


To put it bluntly, I've had a stressful week. Which is fine, I can deal, but I was reflecting on the stressful start of my week when it suddenly dawned on me: last year it was around this time of the year when Bill and I were coping with a server crash and general chaos and utter misery at work. (Titanic 2).
So, I looked back on my blog entries and lo and behold, it was October 23rd that was the first day of horror in the PG newsroom. It was a monday. Granted we're off by one day with the start of stress (Oct 22nd this year), but it was a monday, and at the end of October and in fact, during the same week. Strange. I wonder if this is just some sort of stressful time of year for me? I'll have to see if something happens (out of my hands) that causes me to have a really bad day next year. If it does, I'm going to book off the whole week and stay in bed.
Probably just a coincidence, but it seems weird that the two most stressful days of my past year have been almost the same day.
(afterthought: things have improved)

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Deer Season Apparently

I was in the kitchen (where I belong) doing dishes (like the good little girl I am) and getting supper ready (ok, I'm out of derogatory comments) when I looked up out the window over our sink. I quite literally gasped. Having not expected to see anything at all, I was startled to see this guy:
I followed him outside when he went to the neighbour's yard across the street and saw he had a friend.
The he wandered back to our place and I followed through the windows as he circled the yard.
Yeah, that's a look, hey?
His friend was in the back yard too~
Awwww! They're Friends! Hahaha

My Reliable Life

A while ago I was having trouble making a decision in my life. I went to a good friend of mine; someone who's opinion I value and respect.
She asked me a simple question: "Has your life ever let you down?"
I must have looked confused because she elaborated. "Think about it. When things are looking really bad or you're completely unsure of what to do in a situation, even if you make the wrong choice, has your life ever let you down?"
I thought about it long and hard and realized that, one way or another, whether it was through the help of those around me (which was more often than not) or just some unexpected turn of events, my life has never let me down. I've made bad choices and done stupid things, and I've been terribly unhappy at times, but things always turn out alright.
My advice? Put some faith in your life.

My Card For the Day

"The Hanged Man:
This card denotes the need to look at your current situation from a different perspective. The Hanged Man creates change by acting passively and accepting fate. By surrendering control and making yourself vulnerable, you will facilitate change in your life. In order to see the bigger picture, you will need to take a step back. "
Sometimes it's almost eerie when something unexplainable happens that seems to hit the nail on the head in any given situation. It's like when a horoscope actually applies, or a dream you had comes true. Or even, on a smaller scale, the feeling of deja vu. It happens to me so often I shouldn't be suprised, but it still strikes me every now and again as surreal. I guess though, it comes down to being in tune with the universe and being part of something a lot bigger than any one person. Anwyay, time to look at things passively from another angle.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Ponderisms on the Olfactory System

They say sense of smell is one of the most powerful of the five (six?) senses. Some of the most powerfully vivid memories can be triggered by a scent on the breeze. A certain cologne or hand lotion can bring back distinct images and emotions. Sometimes the feeling of remembering can be so strong that it overwhelms the other senses, and it come so quickly it's easy to be blindsided.
Several years ago, I was riding on a bus from Metrotown to my dorm when someone climbed onboard. The breeze from the door pushed the air towards the back of the bus, and with it, a cologne. I have no idea what cologne it was, but I knew it. I was suddenly thrown back to a moment, sitting in a car, driving in Glasgow with a friend. The next thing I knew the bus stopped at the next sign and a new breeze took the cologne away and I was brought back to reality. But for that moment, I was IN Scotland. A troupe of hyenas could have climbed onto the bus and done a reading from The Merchant of Venice and I wouldn't have noticed. I was consumed by the memory for the brief moment.
This morning I used a hand lotion from upstairs at work. As soon as I massaged it into my painfully dry hands the scent struck me like a ton of bricks. I was suddenly reminded of something...but I can't put my finger on the specifics. It has to do with the time period when I was living in the apartment with Vicky. Like trying to remember a name that's on the tip of your tongue, I can't quite grab the memory. It's floating there and comes closer whenever I breathe deeply, but I can't grasp it.
A good friend of mine at BCIT has no sense of smell. As one of our projects in copywriting, we had to come up with ads playing into each of the five senses. After class he went to our instructor and told her he has no sense of smell and has no idea how to write about it when he's never experienced it. Even though I try never to feel bad for anyone who has something different in their life (can you miss something you've never experienced?), I found my heart going out to him.
Last week Ashley and I got into a discussion about a movie she had seen called Perfume in which a young perfume apprentice who was born with the most sensitive sense of smell tries to capture the smell of a beautiful women (ultimately by killing them, but that's not the point). She told me, during a moment in the movie, he realized he himself had no scent, and because of that, he could never be loved. It seemed like an interesting theory. But that, in turn, implies that those with no sense of smell, or an impaired sense of smell cannot love. It also implies that as we get older and our senses dull, we have less capacity for love.
Anyway, those are my ponderisms for the day.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Who ever thought I'd WANT to cook?!

It's true! After...well...way too long, we can finally start cooking again! No more takeout! Yay!!! Our kitchen, while not totally done, is totally useable now! Everything has been painted and the old gross fridge has been removed, along with the old stove (aka the bane of my existance)! We've got a new fridge, Brad's Grandma's old stove (which works like a dream and she only got rid of it because it was too big!) and the floor has been vaccuumed nicely and we can walk on it without fear of stepping on something and getting lock-jaw! Here are the pictures!

<--Old New-->

Friday, October 19, 2007

Reflections on Life

I've begun doing yoga after work. I lay my yoga mat on the floor in the living room so it faces the large window looking onto the street. As I went through the motions the other day, I felt much more peaceful. I stood up to g0o into the tree position. It involves standing on one foot with the other leg bent so the foot rests on the thigh. The hands are pressed in a prayer position above and held above the head. I fixed my eyes on a tall, strong evergreen in the distance and felt myself focus and relax more, looking into the distance. A moth fluttered past my window and my eyes shifted to watch it's erratic path. But as my eyes moved, my concentration faltered and I swayed, nearly losing my balance. I switched my focus back to the tree in the distance and a thought floated into my mind. It seemed to me the situation was something like life. It's hard to stand tall and steady when you allow yourself to lose focus for every distraction that flutters by.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

My Chi Is Doing Just Fine

Glory of glories, a new coffee shop has opening in Swift Current! Urban Grounds happens to just across the street and up half a block from the station. The only real coffee shop in Swift, it serves everything I could possibly ask for, including my precious chai lattes, london fogs, mochas, machhiatos, and a nut-free double chocolate cheesecake! I know I'm gushing here, but Chris and I just went there for a break. I was feeling frustrated and irritable until my first sip of chai and my first taste of cheesecake, then magically, it all melted away into a feeling of bliss. My chi has been centered once again...or something...I'm happy, alright?!
I now truly feel that Swift Current is my home. Hahaha, ok, I loved it before, but the bar has been raised.


The renovations. Oh the ceaseless renovations. Things are moving along, however slowly, in the renovation department at Casa De Brad and Jess. We've now got the first coat of paint on the kitchen. It's white (a compromise...Brad wanted every room in the house to be white and I said No! So we agreed on the kitchen), but we're going to paint the cupboards some sort of color.
I'm not going to lie...I'm really really looking forward to having the kitchen done. In a big way. I really need to have a stove again. I used to really love fast food and eating out occasionally and always wished we could eat out more so much. It's a shame because there are so many fantastic restaurants in Swift, but I've had enough. I'm done with fast food. I would love to just be able to cook something in a finished kitchen.
So, I guess the only things we have yet to do in the kitchen are to put another coat of paint, and then rip up the floor and get some lino put down. Then it's a matter of re-wiring for the stove, and buying a new fridge. It's not that much, but everything takes time. I'm hoping by the end of next week we'll maybe be able to cook in the kitchen again. Hopefully.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Coming to a Close

And that does it. Wedding season has officially wrapped up. Yesterday, a lovely sunny day (and slightly crisp) was Tom and Vanessa's wedding. The last wedding of 2007 for us. It was a beautiful ceremony in a beautiful church, followed by an awsome reception with lots of booze and lots of dancing (and the dreaded two-steppers)
I didn't get any pictures from the ceremony unfortunately because I chose to sit somewhere where I couldn't actually see past the wall of groomsmen.Me and Brad
The four of us after supper, ready for the reception
The Happy Couple, Tom and Vanessa
The Head Table
Me and Kim
Oh so well mannered!
Cutting the Cake
Shay and Vince
Kim and Nick
Sharp dressed men
All in all, GREAT night!
Now, I guess wedding season has finished...or, a slight pause, anyway, until next March when it will begin anew. Until then, here's the tally:
Weddings: 4
Invitations: 8
Times as Bridesmaid: 1
Bouquets caught: 1

Thursday, October 11, 2007

State of Service

I am officially on the band-wagon of commenting on the state of service in my blog. It's an interesting topic really. I have read two such entries so far. The first on Darwin's blog, followed by comments on Ryan's blog. I commented on Darwin's entry, saying basically that I agree that teens stereotypically have no concept of work ethic anymore (granted this is a generalization and does not apply to everyone, there are some who take a genuine interest in doing the best they can at work).
Ryan made some interesting points on his blog, however, I don't agree with him. Well, not entirely anyway.
His main point seemed to be that if you treat the workers with respect and pleasantness you will, in turn be treated better. I can personally vouch for the fact that doesn't seem to make a shred of difference with the majority of the teen employees in the workforce. Each and every time I go to a restaurant, store, or fast food place I smile and am happy. Even if I'm having a terrible day, I always smile at the very least. I don't expect people to always be outgoing, but I do expect a smile and a pleasant demeanor. I have a problem when I am met with a bored expression, or, even worse, a scowl. I don't appreciate being resented simply for the fact that I am asking someone to do their job.
In the event that someone is a trainee, I am extremely tollerant. It's hard enough to deal with learning a new job, nevermind in a fast paced workplace where people becoming snippy if they aren't served at light-speed. Extra patience is simply considerate, and if it takes a few minutes more to get my coffee, that's fine by me. I have a problem, however, when I wait nearly 20 minutes for a sandwich while orders pile up and 5 employees are laughing and playing slip-and-slide on the freshly washed floor and the sandwich-girl is handling food with her bare hands and utterly unfocused on her work, talking and socializing. I understand the need to have conversations with co-workers and to slow down the pace at times, but when you have a lineup of food waiting to be served with a number of people waiting in the drive through wasting gas while you goof off, THEN I have a problem. It does come down to having no work ethic, learning that slacking off has no consequences, and the feeling that you are so in demand you can do what you like. And no ammount of smiling and pleasantries is going to make those people have any respect for their work. Only at that point will I say something to management. It's utterly disrespectful.
All that being said, it does definately depend on the place. I have had excellent service at several restaurants in's just sad when good service and smiling teenagers is an unexpected surprise.
I think it comes down to what you were taught. I, for one, was taught to leave my problems at the door. Leave life behind when you come into work. Granted, it's not always possible to put on a shining smile if you had an hour of sleep and spilled scalding coffee on your shirt, or if something stressful is happening at home, but for the most part at least give it a go. I was also taught that when things are busy in one area of your place of employment, do what you can to help those employees out, even if that's not your task. Or, if you are told NOT to sidle from department to department, make sure that EVERYTHING is done in your own. There is ALWAYS something that needs to be done. And, for crying out loud, if you're going to slack off, don't do it in the view of the customers! It just looks sloppy and disorganized and disrespectful. And, lastly, I was also taught to treat all customers with respect and courtesy, even if they are being an asshole. It's fine to stick up for yourself if someone is treating you badly, but there is a very very broad space between telling someone that their behavior is unacceptable and scowling at someone simply for talking to you.
There. That's my two cents...or 97 cents judging from the length of this entry.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


I have converted to one of those who is utterly disgusted with a specific type of insect.
The maple bug.
I had never encountered these little pests before moving to Swift Current. Apparently they are not uncommon, but seem to come in cycles; a bad year followed by a few mild years. At first, when Ashley showed me the crowds (or 'orgies' as she refers to the seething piles) of teeny red bugs, I thought they were sort of interesting, but now have discovered they are not "interesting"...they are awful.
They start out small and bright red, then grow and grow and finally stop growing at about 2 centimeters long, black with a red stripe and the intellect of small clumsy pebble. The maple bug, (or boxelder bug) apparently lives in cracks in houses or buildings waiting for fall and winter to come out and infest rooms. They come in such multitudes as to make it impossible to really feel like you're rid of them, despite killing what feels like thousands. The kicker? Apparently when one of these creatures is squashed, they release a scent that attracts more. It's really a spiteful way to die if you ask me.
They don't really DO anything, hence my original feelings that they're interesting, but then I learned that they just crawl around, and morph into kamikaze bugs, fying headlong at full throttle into anything, including my face while I'm trying to read my news cast. Seriously. Disgusting.

Monday, October 08, 2007

My Little Buddy's Birthday

September 28th was Leighton's 2nd Birthday. All smiles, Ashley's little guy seemed to be fully enjoying the day (even though whether he understood what it means is not necessarily certain). I brought him a birthday prezzie which he found sitting on the coffee table in the living room. It was all wrapped up in bright yellow paper with a big bow on top and he just stared at it. Then he moved it around on the table and finally lost interest. Ha! No idea there was something inside, so I helped him get the wrapping paper off of one corner, revealing the side of the box, at which point he got a giant smile on his face and yelled "a box!!" It truly seemed he couldn't have been happier! But I encouraged him to shred the paper until it showed the Mickey Mouse car inside (the little guy is obsessed with cars). He was delighted with the toy and waited fairly patiently while I undid about a thousand twist-ties and freed the toy from it's package. For the rest of the afternoon that bright red convertible was not far from his hands. I was just happy that he liked it (though, it wasn't a hard guess as he had been staring at it in Wal-Mar the day before).

Friday, October 05, 2007

Ode to SiteMeter! (and a poor attempts at being helpful)

A new application added to my blog has increased my stalker abilities, not to mention my sleuthing talents 10-fold! Sure enough, the simple tool called has become another internet addiction. And why not? Suddenly having the ability to see who is reading my blog is captivating (not to mention a little bit of an ego boost).
It's also intriguing, in that there seem to be a number of people reading from places that I'm certain I don't know anyone from. It makes me wonder how these people found this page.
One in particular, a reader from Honolulu, caught my attention and made me wonder how this person could possibly have come to this blog. Luckily, sitemeter has a feature that shows the referral page. Most often the page they came from is another of the blogs I link to who also have a link to me, but in this case, the Hawaiian reader did a google search. The words entered into the search that turned up my blog: DEAR GOD WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO WITH MY LIFE?
Just a little distressing, to say the least. What's even more distressing, however, is that it brought up the archived page in which I talk about the movie Tim (staring a 23 year old speedo clad Mel Gibson). Not exactly an inspirational entry (not that I have any of those at any other time, but well...this was particularly fluffy...even for me!) The key words "What am I supposed to do with" came in the title of my blog and "dear god" was what I said in reference to Mel's skimpy attire. How embarrassing! But interesting, nonetheless to see what kinds of word combinations will lead where.
Anyway, to this reader from Honolulu, (who I don't think will ask for a subscription), I wish I had something helpful to say...but unfortunately it's one of those things that just has to unfold as time goes. I tend to put a lot of faith in fate, and that things will present themselves when they are meant to, and forcing things isn't necessary. I doubt that's terribly inspiring, and if you're feeling the way I assume you must be, it probably isn't very helpful either, but, well, if there's one thing I've learned, life happens the way it's supposed to. Your life won't let you down.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007


I wish everyone had a name tag. Not a "Hi, my name is Jim", but a "Hi, I'm kind of a jackass". Granted, then the problems of catagorizing and stereotyping would be in the forefront, but think of all the time we could save! Imagine, knowing before you even have to spend an ounce of time talking to a person that they are emotionally manipulative! Or on the flip side, think how wonderful it would be to be able to shake someone's hand and know that you're meeting "a decent person who loves stimulating conversation". Sure we'd be missing out on experiences, but really, who wants to waste time with people who pretend to be someone else? Who wants to invest hours and waste valuable thoughts on someone who will just turn out to be the exact oposite of what they claim? It could be very useful in the hiring process as well. I'd be far more interested in employing "interesting person with strong moral fibre" than "self centered cry baby", rather than having to interview someone and turn on the bullsh*t-o-meter and attempt to see through some really good liars.
It happens inevitably anyway; everyone is put into a box, and the general public learns about the real nature of people in the end. This plan would just save time. If people weren't so hesitant to influence the thoughts of other people, we'd all have a lot more time.

Monday, October 01, 2007


It's totally undeniable now. Autumn has arrived, along with the obligatory "fall" blog posting! Yay! I can't really believe that it's actually the first of October.
It seems like autumn just latched onto the city out of the blue one day. Summer, full of it's beautiful scorching sun, wilting heat, and summer dresses held on for a while, but has finally let go it's grasp on the city. All of a sudden one morning the leaves were piled on the sidewalk and lawns, crunching underfoot and making it totally impossible to be sneaky.
September always seems like such a safe month, a transistion month, easing everyone into fall but still leaving just a little hint of summer behind to make it a smoother move. Now that October has come, the thought of the impending winter seems less harsh.
Halloween is on its way, as is Thanksgiving long weekend, making October a month of indulgence. In fact, pretty much the entire three month span from October through to the New Year is a time of over-eating, over-indulging, over-doing. I think it's somewhat of a coping mechanism for the coming months of cold and dark.
Well, here's to an inane blog entry about the start of a new season...I guess I'm just feeling nostalgic for the summer.


Checking my email this morning and there's a comment on my "Oh Deer" blog entry. The comment appeared like this:

Anonymous said...
hmm not really...
7:35 PM, September 30, 2007

I published it, wondering what I had written to prompt the comment. The last line of my entry (which is what I assume this person was responding to) said "remarkable".
I feel like I would like to make a point here: I probably have come across as some city-snob who has never seen a rabbit outside of a cage, never mind a deer in my backyard. That is not actually the case. I spent most of my life in the small northern BC town of Smithers, situated in the middle of a valley flanked by mountains and lakes which are home to any number of deer, bears, moose and about a billion small critters. More often than not the wildlife make their way into the town. It's not uncommon at all to see a moose walking down the street (anyone seen the opening credits for Northern Exposure?). One Christmas in particular, we received a call from a neighbour at midnight telling us to look out of our front window, where there were two moose eating the bushes right in front of the window. Had the glass not been there we would have been standing no more than a meter away from the beasts.
My first encounter with a bear was when my parents and I went for a bike ride and were looking at a piece of property a block from our house that overlooked the slope down to the creek. In the neighbouring yard a black bear stood staring at us. My next encounter was when a friend of mine (and classmate) whose parents ran a wildlife animal shelter brought in three bear cubs to class and let them run around the room (they had been orphaned when a hunter killed their mother, so the Langens were raising them).
So, maybe having two bucks in our yard isn't terribly exceptional in the grand scheme of things, but it was still really neat.
Oh, and furthermore, sometimes a comment bears more weight when it's actually signed. So thanks for being "anonymous" and leaving all credibility behind.