August 31, 2007

Dear Global TV

Dear GlobalTV,

In the arena of TV and politics, I am clueless. But this I know. You have picked up The Office this fall, and I am happy. Actually, I am counting down the days until the premier (exactly 28 as of today).

You are the only channel that we get with the bunny ears in our living room, and for a time, I feared that I would have to either start paying for cable (heaven forbid!) or watch episodes online and after the fact. This is far less enjoyable (and slightly less legal?) than watching it with the million other viewers.

Now, thanks to you, all my favourite shows - The Office, House, Numb3rs - are all on the same channel. And it's the one I get.

Usually, I prefer CTV to you. But you will be getting my business this fall. I hope that makes you happy.

Sincerely,
Beth in Vancouver

August 29, 2007

Tripping the Light Fantastic

I have an addiction.

It's not coffee. It's not drugs or alcohol or anything immoral.

It's a cheesy detective show from the 80's called Remington Steele.

Specifically, it is Pierce Brosnan as Mr. Remington Steele.

I may have mentioned this show before. I am not over it. Far from it. In all its predictable glory, it has sucked me in and is chewing me up. Wendy and I watched 3 consecutive episodes tonight (longer than a full-length movie) , and well-deserved emails to people I care about took a backseat. Whoops.

There is just something about him...he is impeccably dressed in three-piece suits with cuff-links and tie pins (he has somehow managed to mostly avoid the great pitfalls of 80's fashion that his co-star fell headlong into). He has a soft British accent. He throws out witty remarks (and uppercut punches) with great ease. He fights for the honour of the woman he loves. He flirts with the woman he loves, but refuses to take advantage of her when she is most vulnerable. He is a reformed jewel/art thief, which makes him a former bad boy. The rest of his past is a mystery, which lends him an aura of, well, mystery. His thoughtful facial expression is one with his lips slightly pursed and brows somewhat wrinkled, and it is lovely to behold.

I am pathetic. I am no different than the hordes of women who, episode after episode, fawn all over him in one capacity or another. I am like his secretary, Mildred Krebs (the mother from Everybody Loves Raymond), who is fully fifty-five, and when Remington makes a casual comment about taking her for dinner to build staff morale, she mouths to his back, When??

But he has eyes only for Laura. And he is old enough to be my father. And he isn't even real.

August 28, 2007

I Never Thought I'd Say This...

...but Facebook isn't half bad.

I met up with a friend from way back in kindergarten tonight. We got reconnected on Facebook a few weeks ago and grabbed a coffee tonight. It was good.

When I came home, my housemate commented that Facebook isn't so shallow. And I agreed. It's true that 9/10ths of the people who add me as friends never even say hello on my wall. But that one last person who does makes the whole thing worthwhile.

Plus, I'm always looking for another timewaster.

August 27, 2007

Why Love?

Given all the problems love can create, why do we keep longing for it? How many thousands of years will it take for us to learn? How many Romeos and Juliets need to lie dead on the floor before we’re willing to give up this perverse addiction? Oh, I know they weren’t real, but then again, is love? If evolution is our preferred understanding of the human story, why can’t we evolve ourselves out of this primal Achilles’ heel we know as love? And don’t give me this thing about the propagation of the species. Love isn’t necessary for reproduction – just sex is. All you need is attraction, not emotion…If intimacy is only about attraction, we could just keep lust and dispense with love.

But it just won’t go away.

from Soul Cravings by Erwin McManus

Dr. Jones, Dr. Jones...

In Guelph, I didn't really like my doctor. But since there aren't enough doctors to go around, I stuck with her.

In BC, there is a website of all the doctor's accepting new patients. After perusing the list, I pick one and call it, expecting I'll have to try five or six places before I find someone who is still open to new patients.

Not at all. First try = success! And I get an appointment for next Friday. Talk about fast. On a selfish side of things, I am pleased. A more globally aware perspective says that this sort of imbalance is not right or fair...

Shame on life for being this way.

Hurrah for having a new doctor. Hopefully she's good.

August 25, 2007

Yes.

Yes, I have blogskin ADD. I think I'll stick with this one for awhile. But maybe not.

Yes, I am painting my room. The doors are already done.

Yes, I am feeling much better.

Yes, I am tired.

Yes, our fruit fly problem is not solving itself.

Yes, I called Dell before my warranty expired and am getting yet another DVD drive.

Yes, I decided to extend my warranty, as it expires on Sunday and so far I've gotten 2 free DVD drives under it...

Yes, I have paint on me.

Yes, the weather was beautiful today.

And yes, I was inside working.

August 23, 2007

Phone & the Feast

An unexpected phone call from a friend is a pleasant surprise, although I'm notoriously bad on the phone if I have no planned course of conversation. Also, my head was pounding because I had to stand up to get the phone, so then I was concentrating on breathing deeply and not on what was being said.

Sorry, Jesskah. Next time I'll be a more fascinating phone friend.

I like Jesskah for many reasons. One, I don't remember how our friendship started. Two, she plays a mean euchre. Three, she is witty. Four, she is a thinker. Five, she not only thinks but says profound things.

In a blog about Jesus and what it means to "glean" she said,
Your most repulsive table scraps are my banquet.
This is profound in my head, but I can't articulate quite why. I link it to the story of Ruth and how Boaz's leftovers were her bounty. In the same way, even the 'leftovers' in God's word give life beyond measure. And if that's true of the leftovers, just imagine the feasts!

Not Cool

Two things that are not cool:

1. Blogger randomly destroying my template.

2. Being violently ill in the middle of the night.

However, because of #2 I have been able to find at least a temporary fix to problem #1.
I need to sleep now.

August 22, 2007

Question.

If you were packing and storing a gift certificate to a cafe called Death By Chocolate before you moved and went away for the summer, where would you put it in order that you could find it and use it with a friend at the end of the summer?

UPDATE: I found them!!!! Hurrah!!! They were in the card I was given. Thank goodness I keep these things in an organized fashion and could easily find it.

{Resolved: No more blogging during work hours.}

August 21, 2007

Time's Up

I am just about due for a serious post, after so many light-hearted and random entries. I try to balance it - no one likes a downer, but I do need to be honest with both the fun and the less-fun.
---
Yesterday, when I sat down to start my back-to-work time, I wanted to cry. I finally owned up to the stress and trepidation that I felt about this new school year and the changes that it holds. After a good chat with one of my roommates and a bit of prayer, I felt more confident. Today's staff meeting bolstered the excitement, as I realized how glad I am to have six people on our team (if only there was a guarantee that they would all be on campus for the entire semester!). A meeting later on was a mix of encouraging and frightening, as I was reminded of things I feel I failed in last year.

Although I don't avoid conflict nearly as much as I used to, I still find it incredibly hard. I embarked on two conflict-potential discussions today, and am nervous about the long-term results. In one conversation, it was hard to hear how I sometimes hurt one of my closest friends through the things I say and my tone of voice. I also found it hard to articulate, without crying (why do I still associate showing someone my tears with weakness?), the ability that she has to hurt my heart.

I at one time hoped that my fears would dissipate as I grew up. I now see that life isn't that simple. I still fear:
  • hurting people I value
  • being not enough and yet too much (I think this is a fear of 95% of women)
  • not living up to my full potential
  • taking a risk and failing
  • being misunderstood
  • loneliness
Yup, I think I can safely say those are my biggest fears. Maybe I am missing something. But for tonight at least, those are them.

A Good Night

Tonight is a good night by virtue of the following things:

- The fridge is clean. It was disgusting. Now I can happily put my food on any of the shelves.
- The kitchen has been purged of pots from 15 years ago and food from 2 years ago. Perhaps this will deter the fruit flies.
- I have chocolate chip cookies in the oven. Mmmmm, cookies.
- I am watching Remington Steele with Wendy as soon as I finish writing this.
- My luggage is supposed to arrive any minute.

{The fact that it is 11:30 and I've just been informed that my luggage will not arrive until 1am is unfortunate. However, unless it is stolen off my porch in the middle of the night, I should wake up to a suitcase full of clean clothes. Which solves the issue of not having done laundry this evening...}

August 19, 2007

A Few Vital Things

I am back in BC. It was raining this morning. Surprise, surprise.

I'm almost done setting up my room, but I am missing a few important things. Namely, my wardrobe. 85% of my wearable clothes are in a suitcase that has run away from Air Canada. My hope is that I either get it back today, or never. Then they give me money to buy a new wardrobe. I am glad that I left a new pair of jeans here. And that my mom found some clean laundry that ended up in my carry-on.

I hope they call me before my phone battery dies. The charger is in the luggage.

In other news, here is a photo I came across from earlier in the summer. These are my feet happily enjoying luscious grass on campus in Colorado.

August 18, 2007

Life on the Edge

I'm eating expired yogourt for breakfast. A month and a half expired.

It's sooooo yummy.

August 17, 2007

Get Out of My Head, Fergie!

I was telling some friends tonight (at Nadine's birthday dinner) about a song lyric that is stuck in my head and ridiculously pointless. Then I came home and went on YouTube to watch some Rhett and Link. And what do they sing? The same ridiculous song!

I do not miss my blanket. I don't think I did when I was a child. And I won't miss that song, when it gets out of my head.

August 16, 2007

Assorted Thoughts

I had a brilliant flash in my head of a blog/hypertext based on a box of assorted chocolates, with the title "Assorted Thoughts." It is ridiculously cool. I can picture the layout, how you click on a chocolate and get a little description card about the Lemon Creme that is actually a blog entry or segment of a story or something. There might even be two layers in the box.

Since I lack the time and the know-how to create such a masterpiece, I will list, in no particular order, some of the assorted thoughts that prompted one more never-to-be-completed idea.
  • All-You-Can-Eat Buffets (what other kinds are there these days??) are not a good investment for me. I can't eat a lot in one sitting. I prefer to eat every 2 hours instead. But if I pig out, my whole day is thrown off. I probably won't eat again.
  • Sherbet should not be a dessert. It should be medicine. When I eat too much at a buffet, nothing else makes my tummy feel slightly less engorged than a small (small) scoop of rainbow sherbet.
  • Blisters are sneaky.
  • Traffic is never predictable.
  • Where did the word traffic come from?
  • I don't understand how the night-vision on rearview mirrors work, but it is brilliant. Wikipedia explains it, but I think I'd have to set up some mirrors to actually get it. Or read the whole thing instead of just skimming.
  • Ani DiFranco has some great lyrics. Like this chorus from "Swing:"
Are you weary as water
In a faucet left dripping
With an incessant sadness
Like a sad record skipping
And an ugly and ornery
And shadowy dread
Lurking like a troll under the bridge
Between your heart and your head

There are so many things that are brilliant here. I won't explain them all.
  • I place a high value on humour. Why, I do not know.
  • Spending time with the aged is simultaneously refreshing and tiring. They are funny and cute and frustrating and innocent and naive and politically incorrect and completely insightful in turn.
  • Sometimes life doesn't play out as simply as anticipated. This is frustrating, but perhaps in the end it will be better.
  • People I don't know are more concerned for my sister's safety than I was. Does that make me a jerk, or them worriers?
  • I love music. I do. I really really really love it.
  • Some people are nosy.
  • I am nosy. I call it curious.
  • I love my parents. And my little brother, who is turning 18 today!
  • And everyone else in my family too!
  • I have too many thoughts to continue this list.

August 13, 2007

"The Runaways" by Anberlin

A great song about girls and the way we sometimes are. But don't fail to notice the very last stanza...

Come closer now
I know your desire is to be desired
Steal a kiss yet and call us friends
Distance is the thief in which you conspire

Turn and time and time will tell
Time will tell or tear us apart
You're miles and miles and miles away
Silence reveals where we really are

You only stand to break my heart
I can tell it by the way you runaway,
Runaway girl
You only stand to break my heart
I can tell it by the way you runaway,
Runaway girl
Runaway, runaway girl

It's clearer now
You're nowhere into giving
Giving into, giving into me
It's your fault
You're like a rare disease
I know you're in love
With love I believe

Turn and time and time will tell
Time will tell or tear us apart
You're miles and miles and miles away
Silence reveals where we really are

You only stand to break my heart
I can tell it by the way you runaway,
Runaway girl
You only stand to break my heart
I can tell it by the way you runaway,
Runaway girl
Runaway, runaway girl

Do you expect me to wait here?
(All alone in my thoughts and fears)
My whole life could flash before your eyes
(Hope one day that you realize)
This isn't the way it's supposed to be
(This is your life girl, now without me)
May regrets for us well up inside
(As feelings for you are buried alive)
Buried alive

You only stand to break my heart
I can tell it by the way you runaway,
Runaway girl
You only stand to break my heart
I can tell it by the way you runaway,
Runaway girl
Runaway, runaway girl

I only stand to break your heart
You can tell it by the way I walk away,
Runaway girl
I only stand to break your heart
You can tell it by the way I run away,
Runaway girl

Ten Photos

In ten photos, our trip. Here are #s 1-5, in chronological order:



August 12, 2007

Wordless Entry #2 (5-10)


3 Highlights

Many people have asked me for a highlight from my trip. I can't give them one, but here are the top 3 memories:

1. In a little town called Ballachulish, Meredith and I stayed with a wonderful family. Within the first few hours, we were laughing and teasing and joking about all sorts of things. You know how some people you meet can make fun of you right away and it's ok? That was this couple. The husband pretended to be inconvenienced by having visitors, but before long it was evident that he was enjoying himself as much as we were. I think. Also, they have two really lovely and fun daughters. The older one (at the ripe old age of 5) had her share of quotable comments:

{introducing us to her grandad.} This is Beth and this is Meredith. But they're not ladies. They're kids!
{coming downstairs while we were eating dinner, chin quivering} Why do grownups have all the fun after the children are in bed? It's just not fair!
{yelled from upstairs, after being sent to her room for disobedience} I have had enough of parents in my life!

2. The second day of our stay in Ballachulish, Meredith and I decided to go "hill-walking." We would probably call it mountain hiking. The rain had stopped, so we got a map from the tourist centre and some advice from our hosts' friend who worked there. Then we were off. Dropped at the wrong spot initially, it took a couple tries and wandering through a bog until we got on the right trail.

Now, it's important to know that I don't like being wet. I especially don't like being wet if it is paired with either the cold or dirt. In this case, it was a bit of both. But I had been prepping myself all day. "You're going to be wet. It's ok. You'll come home and change and it'll be fine." And it was! Up we went through mud patches and small streams. Climb, climb up Sunshine Mountain...without the sunshine. Two-thirds of the way up, it started to rain.

We contemplated continuing. We declined. We descended. We nearly fell. We continued. We were soaked. We sang. And laughed. We ate our snacks. We walked back home. Through Glencoe, through Ballachulish, right to our wee caravan. I changed into dry clothes, and it was lovely.

We didn't quite conquer "The Pap," but the rain didn't conquer us(me) either. So there.

3. The entirety of our last day in Edinburgh. Here's a run-through:

Up for breakfast, made by our lovely host and new friend, Alison. David/Red came too. I met him in February, and they are in a band together. Off to town around noon, bought some stuff and spent a couple hours in St. Giles'. I love St. Giles, but there are too many tourists today. There's a display of photos and stories on human trafficking. It makes me want to cry. I read every story.

We meet up with Flo and Cecile, French friends who also stayed in Ballachulish. We wander and shop for awhile, then head to Alison's deli, where I eat a Scotch egg. Mmmm.

Meredith and I decide to climb Arthur's Seat. The weather is perfect. The time of day is perfect. It takes us 20 minutes. Perfect. We take pictures in the wind and look like models. Perfect. We laugh and talk about big things. We climb back down and I tell someone that it is "half seven" - look at me, talking like a local!

On the way back, we walk by Indian take-away. I have been craving Indian for a week, so we get some and wait in Alison's lovely flat for her to come home. She brings Martin and Jarka, two Slovakian friends, with her. We eat Indian together and talk and laugh. Meredith and I sing the Canadian anthem in French for some reason, and are treated by Martin's rendition of the Slovakian anthem. {sidenote: Martin is studying English language and literature in Slovakia, and is writing his thesis on spirituality in Douglas Coupland's books. He also had to memorize Chaucer's Prologue in middle English. YOWSERS!!! I'm glad I'm not at uni in Slovakia.}

After supper, Alison and Martin come out with us to a pub. Only we never make it to a pub. We try to call the french friends, but can't connect with them. We decide to go to improv instead, at 12:30pm. The Festival is on and everything is still going on late at night. Martin leaves, but we girls laugh hysterically. I didn't get quite all the jokes - so many little things that are different, even where the language is the same. After improv, David comes again and we go searching for a pub. We keep reaching them just after last call, but finally end up back at Teviot, where rumour has it they're open til 6! (Is this true? I don't know.) We have our drink and head back home...to make crepes. Mmm, crepes, with coconut yogourt, lemon and sugar, and Mackie's vanilla ice cream - not all at once, though. When Meredith and I finally crawl in bed at 5 o'clock, it is already light out, and I realize that Martin will be up and getting ready for work.



Thoroughly good days are hard to capture exactly. But they were delightful and enjoyable, each in their own way, and for very different reasons.

August 11, 2007

Return of the Queen

I am back from holiday and nearly full to bursting with stories and memories. They may come out soon as I am finished my break from cyberworld.

This morning, my friend asked me what I would do first when I got back to Canada. I couldn't think of anything at first - I didn't really miss all that much while I was gone. Then I remembered this site. I missed blogging. More than I missed bilingual labels on food or being in 30 degree weather or easily understanding what people said to me. Yup, I am attached to this blog like you wouldn't believe.

Or maybe you would.