Thursday, April 30, 2009

I get all the news I need from the weather report

Thursday, April 30, 2009

I'm publicly declaring that effective immediately, I will no longer follow any news about spreading pandemics, pieces of Antarctica falling off, flights being cancelled and children being left in cars outside casinos by negligent parents and dying.

I'm done. I'm going into full on head in the sand mode, at least for the next 5 days. Come Monday morning, I'll re-evaluate.

It should be remarkably easy. We don't have cable or even bunny-eared TV, I don't listen to the radio because I prefer my iPod, and I'll just avoid reading the newspaper. Or at least the sections with "THE WORLD IS ENDING" headlines.

Ah, a weekend of bliss. Sweet, sweet media closet bliss. Inevitably we'll watch some movie or downloaded show about the end of the world, but at least it will be by the hands of zombies, mutants or machines- or some combination of the above.

And pssshhh, we all know that zombies don't exist.

(Yet. Stupid swine flu)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Hear my desperate plea...

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

So far today, I have crossed three action items off my to-do list.

I have reduced my emails "flagged for follow up" (and they are colour-coded by department) from 38 to 14.

I have prepared an outline for a major project, designed award certificates, opened my mail, reviewed my voicemail messages from last night and prioritized the rest of my day's tasks into the four quadrants of productivity.

Yeaaaaah. The real world- it sucks.

Is there anyone out there willing to put a jaded, wide-eyed brunette through grad school?

I'll make you cookies.

Granted, they won't be as good as Amanda's.

Anyone? Anyone?

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

No, seriously, he's the meticulous one

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

In 45 sleeps (you know, unless I die from swine flu) Gary and I will be in Germany. I am so very excited. Mostly about the food. And the bier.

See! That German class is already paying off!

Yesterday I started a mental packing list. Today I started breaking in a pair of new walking shoes, which are adorable but have bitten the backs of my heels and now I've bled all over them. But still, cute!

I've figured out which suitcase to bring, how many shirts I'll need, and whether or not I'll be able to get away without my hair dryer (yes) (maybe...) (definitely not if I want to look more sophisticated young lady, less ragamuffin) (still undecided at this point). I've got to load up my iPod, select at least four good novels, preferably paperback but quite long, and keep practicing my language skills.

I predict that I will be completely packed about a week in advance. Gary will likely be all casual about it and toss a few things into a carry-on bag twenty minutes before the taxi arrives to take us to the airport. Apparently it's really not a big deal when you've been to Germany EIGHTEEN times.

Please pass the hand sanitizer

I am scared.

I started the morning by reading as much as I could find about this swine flu until I had actually worried myself into the fetal position.

I can't decide if this fear is extremely irrational or exceptionally well-founded. Pandemics and plagues and waves of locusts have never bothered me. I've been living in a nice, cozy bubble of that sucks, won't happen to me denial.

And now, for some reason (Helloooo, biological clock. Wave to the nice blogreaders!) I am extremely stressed out over the possibility of the human population going poof in my lifetime.

Or if not my lifetime, the lifetime of my children. Their children, meh. I'm not so worried about. They can fend for themselves.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Surprise Visit Ole!

Monday, April 27, 2009

This morning I got a phone call from a person I love very much. This person, along with another person I also love very much, surprised me this morning with a visit! (Hi Mama and Papa B!)

And a quesadilla maker! Hoo, boy! Nothing but sweet sweet cheesey quesadillas for us this week, I'm telling you. If you don't have a quesadilla maker and are saying "Why do I need another small appliance to take up valuable counter and storage space I clearly don't have, what with already owning three fondue sets and a raclette?" then you, my friend, need to come over to my place for quesadillas.

They also presented me with a sweet birthday circus of gifts including shoes, pants and more shoes. My mom knows me, that's for sure.

Thanks for the breeze-through visit, Ma and Pa! See you in a few weeks!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Linda Hamilton, indeed

Saturday, April 25, 2009
Amanda told me this morning while we were huffing and sweating and pumping iron that she wants arms like Linda Hamilton. I asked her, not thinking (that iron is getting to me brain) "The Terminator, Linda Hamilton, or Terminator 2, Linda Hamilton?"

Duh.

Well, imagining that I could one day save the future while heaving around a fierce set of 5 lb dumbbells isn't the most ridiculous thing I did today.

I had a glimmer (SERIOUSLY, just a glimmer) of thought that maybe next year, I'll go in costume to this Comic-Con thing.

And then I remembered: I'm not a loser, I do have social skills, and I hadn't eaten all day, and I was caffeine deprived and thus, nothing I say, do or think should be used against me in any way.

Two hours, a slice of pie and some sweet tex-mex later, my head is clear and I significantly doubt I'll ever actually go back to a Comic Convention. Unless by some miracle of god and strength training I actually do pop out some Linda Hamilton arms, then hot damn, I'll already have a costume!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Blogthursday

Thursday, April 23, 2009

I wish I had something new and exciting to write about, but the truth is- I'm boring. I waffle back and forth between being incredibly upset about this fact and being comforted and not really giving a damn- you know, "May you lead an interesting life" and all that curse jazz.

Aside from nearly dying yet again on my morning walk to work, when a woman slipped slightly while crossing the street, flinging her arms out for balance and accidentally pushing me into the path of an oncoming city bus, not much happens in my day-to-day. But you know, this is a day-to-day blog, and I guess I just have to *own it*.

It's 2:35 and I still haven't eaten lunch, I'm meeting Amanda at the gym after work and then I plan to settle in for a long late-winter-god-is-it-spring-yet television mini-marathon of sci-fi shows that are soon to be cancelled. And possibly eat pasta or steak. Because nothing says "I deserve pasta or steak" quite like the emotional trauma of working out at our incredibly intimidating yupptastic fitness studio filled with bikini fitness models. Who are actually wearing bikinis. Please hand me a donut.

What a thrilling life I lead. At least on Monday I'll hopefully come back to ye blog with tales from my very first Comic-Con, Gary's birthday and my inability to find a meaningful gift for the occasion, attempting to have a very expensive and important dress taken in three full sizes in the next three weeks, and brunch at the Palliser (yum brunch).

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Aaaalll by my-seeeellllfff

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The iTunes genius playlist feature is a dangerous thing. Particularly when you set it to select songs similar to ABBA's "Does Your Mother Know That You're Out" (what, I love that song) for your morning walk to work.

Expecting disco hits and maybe some Scissor Sisters, you may be surprised by what the iTunes pixies give you.

Halfway down the street you may find yourself hideously tempted to start belting out Celine Dion ballads and swinging around lamp posts.

Not that I did. But I was reaaally tempted to. And give a good Celine-style fist-pump and lung combo. I think that really would have made my morning commute just a bit zestier. Also, it was totally an opportunity to burn some extra calories fist-pump-lunging down 8th street.

Monday, April 20, 2009

40 Hours of Woe Is Me

Monday, April 20, 2009

Ungh, Monday. Today really feels like a Monday.

 

I've had three short work weeks in a row. One of them was even a short-short work week! And now, here I am, four hideous regular length work weeks stretching out ahead of me.

 

But then a short-short-short work week, three more regular length work weeks and then finally, and 18 day trip to Germany!

 

And then, one hundred bazillion days until I have accumulated any more vacation time.

 

On another note, my upper body is still sore from all the buffing and toning Amanda and I did at the gym on Saturday. I think I must have burned like, 9000 calories. At least. Enough to make up for the super-healthy Kraft Dinner I had later in the day...right?

 

 

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The Young and the Childless

Sunday, April 19, 2009
I have this theory that children can tell whether or not adults are parents.

Yesterday, Gary and I went out for lunch with his old friend Melissa. Not old as in, Ye Olde, but rather, Melissa was essentially the first person Gary met after moving here from BC. She's a really nice girl, but we never see her because 1) we refuse to leave the inner city and 2) she has a 3 year old son, and you know how those tend to suck up your time.

Yesterday afternoon we drove her back to her mother's house, who was taking care of her son. She asked if we wanted to come in to say hello to him (D), and of course, being childless, unmarried yuppies, we leapt at the chance to interact with a child in its natural habitat.

It went well.

Except for the fact that D kept screaming "I don't like those people!! I don't like those people!!"

I guess he wouldn't be interested in visiting us this summer, swimming in our awesome pool, playing with Gary's 21 year old lego pirate ship (hah hah, just kidding, Gary...) and eating all the ice cream and gummi bears his little tummy could handle! As far as he knows, we could be the ultimate purveyors of childhood bliss!

But nope. That kid could tell that we were not parents from the wide-eyed looks of terror/joy/apprehension on our faces and he wasn't having it.

That's okay. More ice cream for me!

Drip. Drip. Buffed.

Last night we watched Die Hard. I'm pretty convinced that Gary is attempting to make up for 25 years of missed action movie opportunites in record time- by 2012, we'll have nothing left to watch and will be forced to break up because we'll have nothing to do or talk about.

Anyway, after watching Die Hard (have I ever mentioned how much I love Alan Rickman? If Alan Rickman showed up at my door I wouldn't even stop and grab my purse, I'd be gone so fast into the sunset with my mid-life Brit.)

(Same goes for Daniel Craig, George Clooney, Colin Firth and David Tennant)

(I know George Clooney is not British, but could you imagine if he WAS?! He'd be like the male embodiment of lemon gin!)

(I'm pretty sure that reference is Saskatchewan-based and hang my head in shame)

...sorry, I was in the middle of a sentence. Ok. So after watching Die Hard, neither of us was ready for bed, so we decided to watch an episode of Dollhouse we had queued up. Refreshments are required for a viewing of an inevitably pre-emptively canceled Joss Whedon sci-drama, so I went to grab some gummi bears and some water.

And then, in the kitchen, I heard this noise coming from the ceiling.

A noise one doesn't want to hear at one in the morning, or pretty much anytime, really.

A watery noise. A rushing noise. A oh, crap, there is water dripping THROUGH the light fixture in the kitchen noise.

Crap. But you know, there is something to be said about Gary's sound system. I couldn't even hear that gross, stagnant-smelling water dripping into pots and buckets, that science fiction white noise just drowned it right out.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Shot throught the pocketbook!

Friday, April 17, 2009
*CHA-CHING*
 
That was the sound of me dishing out entirely waaaay too much money (actually, it was exactly what I had budgeted, so I guess not way too much money) for airfare to get me to Germany for 18 days. Sweeeet.
 
Not sweet? MasterCard's crazy new online-shopping verification code. Gee, MasterCard, it sure would have been NICE of you to include SOMETHING, ANYTHING about said code when you mailed my new card to me THREE WEEKS AGO.
 
Nothing? Nada? I double and TRIPLE checked.
 
Fortunately, customer service at MasterCard is really patient and I think quite accustomed to angry people calling them at 10:45 pm in a frantic panic because they are trying to book a seat on a flight that is rapidly selling out.
 
 
 

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Games

Thursday, April 16, 2009

For my birthday Gary gave me an iPod, a jar of gummi bears (our 'traditional' gift exchange item) and a book of word and number puzzles from Starbucks. We all know I love Starbucks, we all know I love word puzzles. I once carried around a tattered, folded, torn copy of the Sunday Times Crossword around in my purse until I finished it. It took weeks.

I'd admired the book a few times while waiting for my morning coffee, but never in his presence. This makes him a very intuitive gift-giver. This freaks me out because next week it's his birthday (27!) (okay, totally not at all but I told him we could count backwards!) and I have absolutey no ideas for awesome, mind-blowing gifts. I have three ideas for perfectly good, not-a-surprise-in-any-way gifts. But no mind-blowing "really? how did you know?" prezzies.

But that's not the point. The point is, I like word games and puzzles, crosswords and anagrams and even sudoku, which isn't a word game but is along the same lines, because they are logical. There is a process. It's a neat and tidy problem-solving challenge. There are no crashed timelines, no unexpected boosts in workloads, no unreliable contributors, no politics, no inter-personal relations related challenges. There is a cycle, a puzzle, a sense of accomplishment. It's an easy win. I like to sit down with a pencil and figure it out because I just can't do that in my day to day life. There are no easy wins outside of games.

Amanda's right. Careers, they suck.

And I loved that board game.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Predicament

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Riddle me this:

You are in charge (whether someone put you in charge or gender expectations put you in charge or your complete inability to relenquish control put you in charge) of making dinner.

You have the perfect meal plan worked out in your head.

But you can't remember if your partner actually likes, tolerates, despises or loves said entree.

(If you can call it an entree).

And your cell phone is dead so you can't text him to find out.

Do you go ahead and make it anyway?

(Keeping in mind that this hypothetical you is extreeeeemely sensitive when it comes to criticism of the food you prepare, for some back-assed awful reason. GIVE ME THE MARTHA STEWART BRANDED GOLD STAR OF COOKERY GOSHDARNIT!)
(Also keeping in mind that said you occasionally mutters under your breath "This is the twenty-first century for frig's sake, I'm not a short-order cook/maid/Martha Effing Stewart and if he doesn't like it he can STICK IT")
(Oh, man. Look what you've started now.)

Ich spreche Englisch

Last night I had my second German class. Learning to speak German is a heck of a lot harder than I thought it would be.

I've studied French, though I've completely fallen off the French bandwagon and am now limited to reading cereal boxes and singing one lame French pop song from the late 90's, it was relatively easy to pick up.

I like words and using words, so that part of my brain is stimulated frequently. I naively thought that learning German would be a snap.

Ha.

The sounds come from a completely different part of your mouth. It sounds bizarre, but man, those "sch" and "zs" and "schtzschz" noises are hard to get used to. I feel like my mouth is full of soft consonant sounds and odd vowel noises.

The sentences are structured in a completely different way. And verbs, from what I can tell, aren't really conjugated in a manner that makes much sense. I'm sure there's a pattern, but it has yet to reveal itself to me.

And the words. Dear sweet baby Jesus. The words are outrageously long. My favourite so far is entshuldigung, which means "I'm sorry" or "Excuse me". Which is fun to say, but I'm sure I sound like a moron while saying it.

The worst part has got to be that awful sing-song rhythm that students apply to a new language. You know the one. Everything goes uuPPP and uuuPP and uuuPP at the end of a sentence. If a native speaker talked to me like that in English, I would slap them.

But all that said, I'm really glad I'm taking the class, though I have accepted that if I do attempt to use any of the vocabulary I've learned when I'm actually in Germany, I'll probably be laughed at. Even though I come home from class with an exhausted, stretched out brain, I'm enjoying it. It's fun, in that humbling "I have the language skills of a two year old" way.

And now I know how to say the alphabet in three different languages, how to introduce myself in four, and how to form a concise, non-run-on statement in none of them.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

It's a slipperly slide to living on a vegan commune

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I've been having several conversations with the same theme lately. Yesterday, with my friend Amanda; today, over email with my friend Angie. Also, in my head. Because I usually have conversations with myself in my head, using two different voices to distinguish between narrators. One of them is the one that refers to the other by my last name. Yes, I am crazy.

But basically, we've been discussing what you would do if you didn't have to have a conventional job. Or, what kind of life do you want, and what kind of job fits in with that? The connection between work and life- both in terms of balance, but also how work allows one to maintain life.

This is of course sparked by the fact that I didn't get this job I really wanted, and I get all introspective following rejection. God forbid I ever get divorced, I may move to the Galapagos and you'll never see me in person again, just read angsty blog entries full of BS.

So here's my summary of the life I dream of having, that I probably won't because reality is, in the next 3-5 years I plan on getting married, buying property and purchasing the necessary license to open my own baby factory. And that's okay, because that reality is going to be totally awesome. If not sleep deprived.

(Whoa, that's a scary thing to admit publicly to my friends, family and the internet!)

But if there was a way...one version of my desired dream 9-5...

I'd spend more time working on maintaining a life and home; growing and making more of my own food, discovering more ways to be happier with less. Connecting with people in person, smiling at strangers, listening to stories. Finding answers to problems that matter on a small scale. Maybe that means owning a book-related business or telecommuting and spending more time at the farmers' market, or entering the world of stay at home moms, or even submitting to a smiley, friendly, 21st century Communist leader.
 
Now I just have to figure out how to incorporate a few of those themes into my life as a wacky, 20-something, smug coupled desk jockey.

grumblepost

Meh. I had a long, ranty, depressing post about how much I hate living in Alberta and how much I hate winter/spring and how I managed to poke myself in the eye and it really hurt and how much I hate coming off a long, long weekend high and how much I'd rather be baking bread and making organic preserves and wearing non-constricting pants made of a nice, soft, cotton-lycra blend.

But that's really not getting me anywhere, and apparently the powers of the universe are trying to teach me to manifest positivity, so bleh.

On the upside, our trip to BC this weekend was lovely. It rained, and though that was a bit of a downer because we couldn't do the lengthy list of fun things we had planned, I love rain so I was okay with it in the end.

Also on the upside, in exactly two months I'll be in Germany, on the auto-bahn, somewhere between Munich and Regensburg, jet-lagged as all get-out and trying to make a decent-to-good impression on my boyfriend's father.

And one more time, for good measure, on the upside, only 42 minutes until lunching.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Advice to self: Burn Journals

Wednesday, April 08, 2009
Over brunch this weekend, the topic of creativity spawned by teen angst came up. Specifically, angry, misguided poetry and journal or diary entries.

Now, I was a prolific journal keeper, from the age of ten onward. Now I blog, in part because my carpal tunnel makes writing a bitch, and also, do you know how long it takes me to find a good pen some days?!

Much longer than it should.

But I was no wayward poet in my youth. Instead, I cut other people's poetry out of magazines (Teen, Seventeen, YM...we're not talking literary review rags or the New Yorker or Vanity Fair or even Macleans here, people...) and pasted them into notebooks or those sticky photo albums. Then I drew squiggly hearts and lighting bolts and profound, cryptic initials and put stickers around them. Because I HAD NO TASTE.

We talked about how embarassing it would be to have one's children find their old diaries. Then we hatched an ingenious plan to do some intense editing work, destroying the mortifying passages about feeling like puberty was sucking you down, down, down, down into a spiral of doom where unicorns failed to fly and clearasil, tampons and lady bic razors were only rung through by the cute (male) cashier. In place of those awkward...ramblings...one would leave clever, witty commentary on society, thoughtful advice and bon mots about the process of being a teenager.

Oh, how we laughed.

It's a good idea, you know. But what is TRULY mortifying is that when I wrote those journals, I wrote them hoping that someday, my own awkwardly chubby, giant-headed, nearsighted daughter would find them and finally realize that her mother- yes, the Meg you all know and sort of love/tolerate- UNDERSTANDS HER.

Oh, how I was WRONG.

Next time I'm home, I'm lighting a bonfire. Because if there is anything I have learned in the years since I earned my high school diploma, it is this: parents of teenagers should HIDE AWAY their understanding of that spiral of unicorn death. It really helps with the "was I seriously that effing annoying?" bonding process that happens in one's mid-twenties.

Oh, and one more thing I have learned since then: If a boy is nice, cute, well dressed, smells good, likes the things you like and isn't trying to have sex with you at any and every given opportunity: He's gay.

Okay, now this is totally NOT fair.

I don't know what you're trying to tell me, universe, but yesterday was the first birthday in the greater part of a decade that I didn't consume even a single alcoholic beverage, and today, I feel like I've been hit by a garbage truck, dragged through a swamp, smacked over the head 14 times with a wiffle bat and then forced to supervise 25 hungry, tired, over-excited preschoolers.

Not. Fair.

(Did I mention that this is NOT A GOOD WEEK to be home sick?! AAAARRRHHHHHH)

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Happy Birthday, Megans

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

24th Year Round-up 

In my 24th year on the planet, a whole lot happened. 2008 was the Year of Change, and while it was a beast of a year, it was really only the first quarter that sucked. A lot happened last year, so here's a briefing.

 In no particular order:

I bought my first new car.

I got a new job.
 
I got a $15 haircut.

I moved.

I found someone who can truly tolerate my day-to-day neurosis and continues to love me because, and despite, of them.

I gave up Starbucks.

I started on the Starbucks again.

I've got big plans for my 25th year, but I'm hoping mostly for personal change and growth, rather than forced change as a result of external stimuli.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Tight Present, two

Monday, April 06, 2009
Oops, and I totally forgot:

The title of the last post?

Well, on the upside, now that I'm home early, I have scads of time to keep cruisin' podcasts and apps on my awesome new iPod Touch that Gary gave me for my birthday!

Hurrah!!

Tight Present!

I know, without a doubt, as of this morning at around 11:00, that I became a full-blown adult.

No, my birthday is tomorrow. And it has nothing to do with numbers or dates, this particular epiphany.

No, this time, it's circumstantial.

We have some serious problems with our server at work. It wrecks havoc quite often, and productivity around the joint grinds to a halt.

Well, our server was down today, and so no work was accomplished. Ultimately, after our lunch potluck (oooops, totally forgot about that one, thank god for Safeway), we were sent home.

I know what you're thinking: CELEBRATE!

It's a beautiful spring day! Tomorrow is my birthaversary! It's already a short work week!

But here's the catch, and the pivotal moral of the story:

I'm too busy to go home early. I'm too busy, people, and I already put in some extra time on Sunday! I have too much to do for bonus time off!! This is an incredible inconvenience and I am chapped!

Argh.

Well, at least now I don't feel so bad about my appointment to have my car serviced this afternoon. Grumbleadultcakes.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Well, that didn't take long.

Sunday, April 05, 2009
I was up at the university yesterday, buying a textbook.

Yep. Going back to school. Ish.

Tuesday is my first continuing ed class. I've been sucked right back in. I know that it's not the same as doing another degree or even a certificate, but hey- I'll be spending 16 hours at the University of Calgary in the next 8 weeks and I am excited about it.

I'm surprised that it took me 3 years to go back. I honestly thought I'd be back in class of some sort right away.

I'm more surprised that Mac Hall has not changed. I first stepped through the doors there seven years ago, and it's exactly the same. I may have forgotten how to find textbooks, but I haven't forgotten where the delicious stuffed buns in the food court are!

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Oh, Mister Sandman

Thursday, April 02, 2009

I am exhausted.

I feel like I've been hit by a bus.

I'm not sleeping well, I've had the same headache for the past three days, and thank god the sun has come out or I would be grumpy on top of it all.

I've been having the most epic anxiety related dreams this week. A few nights ago, I dreamt that I had to re-take all of my high school exams. I was struggling with the math and English classes, which is so unlike high school Megan, who rocked those courses (well, pretty much everything, this is no time to be modest).

The next night I dreamt that I was in a play my mother was directing, except that I didn't know any of my lines. Man, she was pissed off.

And last night I dreamt that Gary brought home a new pet. A 12 foot python. And it kept trying to get into the bed. You should know that I am absolutely effing terrified of snakes. This was not a good dream.

(Gary, you bring home a snake, we are relationship off.)

These are frequently recurring Megan dream themes. The only one remaining is that my teeth all fall out, but I haven't had that dream since I broke a wisdom tooth and it actually fell out. I don't know what my subconscious/random firing of the synapses in my brain is trying to tell me, but I think it has something to do with fear of failure, anticipating change and anxiety in general.

On the upside, I did not dream that I was a male mob boss and that my belly button was a Phillips head screw, and that when I unscrewed it my male genitalia fell off and was carried away by waterfowl.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

What I'm Doing Today

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Today I'm sort of half-assed participating in Digital Marketing World's Spring 2009 "Winning Against the Odds" virtual conference.

I intended to stay home, glued to my boyfriend's multi-monitor, high speed display- but as it is for e.v.e.r.y.o.n.e in the universe, work got in the way. I've got too much to do to stay at home in my jammies and participate in a day-long webinar that would be extremely inspiring and valuable, so I'm catching keynotes and presentations when I can, between meetings.

Not ideal, but it'll have to do! I can download the sessions I miss and watch them later.

And I have to say, it's a super cool concept- it's free, I can do it from work/home/Starbucks/anywhere with internet access, and the presentations are, so far, reasonably awesome.

And the Keynote worked on Obama's campaign!

So while there are no cookie breaks or physical exchanges of business cards, it's the coolest conference I've ever "been" to. I'm looking forward to the Fall event in September.