Monthly Archives: April 2008

I Think You Have a Little Something on Your Face

Sitting at the front desk after our morning meeting I opened one of the two subscriptions to the local newspaper to search for the usual (job postings, obits and garage sales). What stopped me on the second page was my own face. *Right, there was an article coming out about summer jobs* It would have been a reasonably flattering shot if not for the black smudge that happened display itself right on my nose. *Oh, must be a printing mistake, I’m sure the other copy is fine*. Not so much (although I later saw that my parent’s copy was sans dirt smudge so some of the city doesn’t think I have rampant skin cancer on my face). The administrative professional in our office (who was celebrated Wednesday on Administrative Professionals day) was kind enough to make me a black and white paper nose to wear in case students came in looking for the SJS Coordinator and didn’t recognize me without the carcinoma.

It wasn’t half as bad as what I was quoted saying. In all the explaining I gave about our services I mentioned that students were sometimes making the mistake of going downtown only to be sent up to our office because we could offer better student-based services (politics, there are two offices but ours is the only one that deals with students). Luckily my boss, of course, does want the traffic at our office but politics say that I better bend over for the boss down at the other office soon.

Short-lived fame. Monday I have to review all the resumes submitted for the positions of my assistant (it sounds glamourous to have an assistant but we work pretty on par). I’m looking forward to finding a good candidate and even a little to the (guilty) enjoyment of being able to judge what the candidates have submitted. But each has to be marked on a rubric and there are 20 or 30 or 40 of them. Maybe I’ll get to put in those extra hours before my holiday after all.


Committing to Practice

After some initial confusion:
-Dan your new student is here.
-uh, I have Dave at 5pm.
-Are you sure you’re with Dan?
-*across the hall my sister’s voice teacher pipes in* That has to be his older sister. I knew she was a Vixxen when she walked in.

I’m not sure what makes me such a spot-on representative of my family name but this is not an isolated occurance. He was a bit uninformed but very gracious about the change. A bit overwhelmed I left with 5 or 6 sheets of little songs (oh, like, Jingle Bells) to help me learn to read and play notes and a few chords to work on (D, Em, G, C). He ended saying that he could tell I was musical and could be playing decently in a few months. I’m going to choose to hold onto that hope even if I think it was said more out of encouragement than truth. If how i play drums on ROCK BAND has anything to say about it I am NOT musical.

Home for some dinner, a show and a quick practice (jingle bells, jingle be…..Jingle bells, Jingle bells, jingle al….jingle all….and so on). Then back out the door for sign practice. Luckily the signing class is two hours and slightly more practice intensive (vs. taking everything home to learn by myself). I picked up the alphabet fairly quickly (I missed the first week so was slightly behind the other students) and we moved into basic questions and descriptions. The emphasis on the facial expressions seems to have a mocking sort of tone but it acts as the intonation a prosody in English when we raise our tone at the end of a sentence to ask a question or point out a subject under our breath. There is even a way to write ASL. IX-loc is “indexing-location” ie. the speaker is pointing to the object. Or Run++ this is the equivalent of Running (gerund) but means “repeated” because the sign repeats to create the gerund.

Another great feature: the bluntness.

English: What is your name?
ASL: you name what? With the unacceptable-outside-deaf-culture index finger pointing at the questioned party.

Now to practice guitar 3 (THREE??) times a day as instructed. Who wouldn’t be good in a few months after that?

Self-Directed Learning

Finishing my only class at the local university frees up some time. Meaning Tuesday nights for some self-directed learning. Last year it was Spanish, the year before Linguistics. This summer doesn’t have a theme per se but I have been graciously given the last 5 weeks of guitar lessons that my brother “isn’t feeling challenged by”. I wonder what the chances are that I’m actually a music prodigy (according to Rock Band: very slim).

Tuesday nights will also be taken up by learning various hand gestures to communicate with. In other words, sign language courses. Shouldn’t interfere too much with my Spanish.

In terms of excitement there are now tickets to England booked and one has my name on it!

Second Offer

Two down and neither what I want. McMaster sent me an email today. Acceptance to the Linguistics and Cognitive science program. While I do feel smarter just being accepted Western is still my orange jelly bean (preferred above all others but not readily available).

Queens Deadline: April 25
McMaster Deadline: April 30
Western: had better do some accepting before I have to

5 Year High school Reunion

This may not be that small of a town but it seems like that the mark of success is getting out. At work I ran into someone I had gone to high school with. I was the plump nerd who was ‘totally crushin’ on him and he was cute, sweet and dated one of my good friends. Actually maybe he dated two.

I was way too shy to say anything to him until it was too late. Until we were friends and he was securely in a long-term relationship. “I didn’t think I would see you still living in this city”. I take that as a compliment and quickly explain that I left for school and plan to leave again. Failing to mention, of course, that I actually may be back for good after that. He is fat now. He has so much responsibility. Children; children that depend on him for support. A new baby. There is no satisfaction that his life didn’t turn out like we all think it will in high school. Everyone takes a different path, some surprise you. Some disappoint.

Some diseases I have thought I had

There are a few conditions on this blog. The first is that I don’t mean any disrespect by listing a disease. At some point in my life I really did manage at some point spend much of my caloric intake worrying about the condition. Also, hypochondria seems like the new vogue. With all these diagnoses available online (and late at night) it has become a plague (that no one actually has).

1. Hypochondria: maybe i’m not neurotic enough for the actual diagnosis. And I don’t have a doctor so it saves plenty of time.

2. Cancer: This can be brought on by headaches (brain cancer [see aneurysm]) or neck lumps (so many muslces, glands and natural lumpiness!). This is actually a serious topic and I wholeheartedly suppose self-monitoring.

3. OCD: actually true but on the low spectrum (once you get to the low spectrum who doesn’t have it?). I could regale you with bunches of stories about childhood neuroses.

4. MS: I read an ad as a preteen about MS that asked “Do you ever wake up in the morning and can no longer walk?”. This stuck with me. I once woke in mid-night with a useless arm and not remembering having slept on it, which caused some heart palpitations.

5. Aneurysms: this does run in the family.

6. Diabetes: this really runs in the family (maybe I shouldn’t advertise all my bad genes if Mark reads this?). I pee a lot. Excessive peeing = “oh no! My beta cells are kicking out!”

7. Some sort of brain wasting: This is more just passing and easily dismissed. But I am SO FORGETFUL!

I’m sure there are more to add but I should be thankful for actually be pretty darn healthy. This is when I’m supposed to be at my peak. I can’t believe I should start feeling older from now on….

Not to be Left Behind

I too have discovered Flight of the Conchords, [muthah uckers]. It seems that this singing duo has reached its “tipping point” with everyone discovering and subsequently blogging about them. I was initially skeptical but was quickly won over by their clever tunes in various genres. They are from New Zealand (not to be confused with barby-usin’, kangaroo-riding Australians) and are navigating in their new home of New York city trying to survive on no gigs for their band not booked by their agent, Murray.

Now that I have established myself as one of the ‘in crowd’ [good Bernstein Bears book] on to the rest of my glamourous and media-filled life.

8:51 [on my 5-minute-fast clock] wake-up
-eat breakfast, straighten hair
10:35 – arrive at the local science fair just a bit early. Chat up some friends.
11:25 – Present Attilio Berdusco award for Best in Health Sciences with a $75 checque to a deserving project. Pose for pictures.
12:08 – Begin my workout

skip forward one day [because doing homework on the deck and watching FotC doesn’t make me seem so glamourous]

930 – wake-up
1025-1:32 – church
1:41 – arrive home. Receive a message and return the call. “They are almost finished, come right now!”
1:48 – pull into YMCA parking lot
2:15 – present Giant Cheque of money raised during the high school free throw competition [sponsored by the YMCA and my affiliated employer) to Easter Seals on two TV cameras and some local newsprint.

Rest of day: homework, hanging with Mark, playing Bohnanza, watching Flight of the Conchords


Choosing to let the rrrrecord stand.

My first roll-up-the-rim-to-win from Timmies this season brought home a free coffee. This already shatters my oh-fer-nine of last year. I choose to bask in the glory and stop playing now.

Work or play?

I have started working full-time now.
Meaning no more sleeping until 10am or watching e.r. reruns and reading until 1am.
No more starting my workout by 5 after 4pm (I work until 430 now unless I feel like starting at 8am – I do not)
But yay to bigger cheques and more purpose.

The boss (el jefe) has a plan where each employee has to have three activities or initiatives that they run this year. One for Morale. One for Communication. One for Image. Mine are now in writing.

Image: write an article about the program I am running here for the local newspaper
Morale: a team-building game during one lunch hour in May

And the one that I can’t wait for
Communication: Spanish lessons in the weekly meeting (but not until July!). We will work on some basic pronunciation and then everyone will be introduced to 5 Spanish words to practice over Peruvian Muna tea (and possibly some Maracuya-mango jell-o).

Here are the words so far:
-el/la jefe/a (boss, I’m sure he will appreciate this)
-el trabajo (work or job: the words are employment related since I work in an employment office)
-el/la empleado/a (employee)

Those are three and I will carefully choose the last two. I’m thinking one more employment or office work (oficina, computadora, papel, almuerzo [lunch]….so much to choose from)
And then one that is fun and unrelated (manzana/apple, zanahoria/carrott, perro/dog for that rolling ‘rrr’) The possibilities are endless (actually limited, to the number of Spanish words I suppose). Suggestions are welcome (in english or Spanish)