Hiking, Travelling and Dreaming

This was intended to be my thoughts on travelling, but I'll have to tame my wanderlust for a while longer....

Tuesday, March 30, 2004

In the words of Chris Ellis, Arrrg! Two 10 page papers and an exam in 2 weeks... I better get off here!!

Missionaries are good salespeople!

I shouldn't generalize to all missionaries, the one I saw was a Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints follower. As I waited for the metro and listened to him giving his speil, it hit me, the guy should work in sales!!

He did everything right and just perfect enough to get the girl to take one of his pamphlets and possibly attend his place of worship. He started by asking the Asian girl where she was from. When she replied Korea, this gave him a chance to exercise his few linguistic skills in Korean. Then he asked her about herself (psychology tells us that people love to talk about themselves). As the theory of reciprocity goes, when someone asks you something, you feel that you should ask them the same question.

This is when he went in for the kill. He explained that he's a missionary from Utah but he's in Montreal to learn French. He's been here 22 months... And his job he explained was to teach people about Jesus.

The metro arrived and she was sold. He reached into his bag and handed her a pamphlet. I was impressed with how fast he did it. He could have sold anything- even a dead horse!!!

It made me wonder of whether any studies have been done on whether missionaries are better salespeople. It would make a nice experiment if not. But I'm not saying that some giant corporation should scoop up the missionaries. However, if they did, their sales might increase.

Just a thought. On another note, humpty dumpty tortilla chips are way too salty!!

Monday, March 29, 2004

I wrote this today in class. Warning: it rhymes.

My heart races fast,
I'm in psycholinguistics class.
The coffee got me wired,
But my brain is so tired.
All morning, I did my slave work in the lab,
Stamping and photocopying for hours can get pretty drab!
My prof is teaching- verbs constrain semantic events,
Wondering what I'll eat for dinner is making me tense!
It's Monday night, might watch the OC,
I wanna go home but it's not 6:30
Now the prof has caught my attention,
I'll listen to the rest of the lecture- nothing else to mention
Now,I have something to add to my blog,
Spring is here, time to unwrap the dogs! (Inside joke.... As a child I thought that the shrubs wrapped up for winter were actually dogs... Phil should get this!)


Saturday, March 27, 2004

A Walk in the shoes of a Homeless Person

They are everywhere. Sitting on the sidewalks with open hats. Some bare signs that ask for help. Others ask kindly for spare change. We see them in the metros, we watch them digging in the garbage for bottles, and we turn our heads when they cradle bottles of booze.

When I first moved to the city, I felt empathy for the homeless population. In my village, no one was homeless. Being homeless was something novel. Over time, I became desensitized to their cries. It became as common as the rest of my routine.

Lastnight, I got firsthand experience of what it feels like to be homeless. After an unsuccessful climb up Mount Royal, Merc and I were drenched. We ran down Cote des Neiges to his place in the downpour. Since all of my clothes were soaked, he lent me an oversized hoodie(from his larger days) and a pair of shorts.

I then left his house wearing the baggy outfit with my hairy legs showing. As I walked into Guy metro, I got all kinds of stares. I got some pity smiles, more stares. I think my plastic bag full of my wet clothes topped the costume off.

Upon arriving home, my own roommates barely recognized me!!!

I know the homeless go through a lot worse than that, but at least I got a glimpse of what being homeless is about. Frankly, I don't know how they all do it.

Thursday, March 25, 2004

Check out my links!!!

I'm so very proud. Now, there is a direct link to everyone's blogs.... I did it all by myself and my scarce html skills!!

Nothing else to say...

It's raining and feeling more like spring.

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

We just finished family game night in the cold water flat
My hair is greasy and coated with fat
I went to the gym to do a step class
We got a new roomie- a Scottish Lass
Crissy is sleeping, her room is dark
When springtime arrives, I'll take Smiley to the park:)
Mercury's upset, he needs a good friend
For the most part, we share the same taste in men.
I'm dreading my oral on Sunday afternoon
The bags under my eyes make me resemble a raccoon
Instead of wasting my time on here
Into the shower I shall disappear!!!

Apologies for the rhyming poem. I just wanted to try something else. The days are flying by and my deadlines are creeping up. Can't wait till my 311 class is over!

Bonne Nuit

Forever Young

It's hard to believe I'm getting old. 22 is only 5 months away and yet on Saturday in st hubert the hostess tried to persuade me to order from the kid's menu (12 and under). I would have done it- it's cheaper, but I was shocked. I know I look young. People constantly ask me if I'm 18 years old when in a bar, however, I thought I looked over 12. I thought I could pass maybe in the 14-16 range.

Ahh, I suppose I should be happy about it. It means I'll never be on old maid but a young one, right? And someday maybe I can aspire to be the cougar that my mom is. (Just kidding if you read this mom!) I guess it's bedtime for me...

In 20 years, I'll be glad to look young... So for now, I'll just live with getting carded excessively and using the child rate whenever I can:)

Saturday, March 20, 2004

Going out with Mercury- Never a dull moment!!

I wasn't planning on going out lastnight. I got suckered into it by Merc. So we went to Sky.... Okay I'll get to the interesting stuff...

I was in the bathroom and I heard a man's voice saying "Okay get out of the stall and pull up your pants! Now!" I was confused, called out the Matinee idol's name and left the stall. There standing at the door was one of the bouncers. And by the sink were three guys!

I asked them what that was about. Can't a girl pee in peace?! They explained that they were trying to have a threesome but got caught!! I later ran into them again and found out one was from N.B. and the other one had lived in Restigouche.

It was an alright night, but when you're as exhausted as I was, it's tiring to dance. So I stood on the sidelines while Mercury was dancing with a lesbian who was buying him martinis!!! Mercury wasn't the only one who got offered drinks, a guy tried to buy me a drink too! I figured it was safe since it's a gay bar however, I wasn't feeling up for any more alcohol.

Coincidentally, I later learned that the guy was straight! So, a lesson I learned was to be careful at smiling at gay guys too, they may not be.

Okay, so I have learned my lesson about not walking home (see my other entries for more details) and so I stayed with Merc till the end. Consequently, he picked up during the slow songs. So the three of us attempted to walk home. I use the word attempt with caution. I was trying to walk briskly while they sauntered and stopped every five steps to kiss or gaze into eachother's eyes. After my patience wore off and my feet were complaining, I told them I'd just walk home.

So I did. I arrived here at 5am. Also, I took every precaution to ward off the sketchy people. I wore my hat, with my scarf wrapped around it, and pulled up my hood. I ignored everyone I passed during my 6.1 km walk home and got here safely without any hassles.

It'll be a while before I go out to the village again.....

Thursday, March 18, 2004

Kudos to our matinee idol!!

Remember way back when I wrote about Mercury's guest! His boarder that he fed and kept in the kitchen. Well it looks like he's gonna be gone. They're telling him to leave after giving the guy a place to stay for the winter.

This may appear cruel and evil to kick a homeless man out of your house but they have good reasons to. He has taken advantage of their kindness and has abused his rights. It only seems fair that if someone is nice enough to take you in, that you should treat them with respect. You shouldn't answer their phone and be rude to the people who call for them. When you aren't paying rent do you have the right to insult the other tenants? What about insulting their friends? And when you have hurt a tenant to the point that he no longer feels happy in his own home, it appears the line has been crossed.

At least, the cold of the winter is over for the most part and maybe Pepe can find a friend of his own age to live with ie. Batman. Where did he stay last winter? That's a mystery.... Why didn't he collect welfare while he lived with them? Another mystery...

What I get from it all is that it's much better to prevent homelessness from happening than treating it after it has happened.

Monday, March 15, 2004

Lack of Energy

This is a more than a fat day, it's a lethargic day. I went to the gym nonetheless but I didn't feel I could give more than 70% of my energy. The past few times it's been like that too. Maybe my iron is low again.

We got a new roomie. And he's not 57, homeless or rude!!! It's Mercury, he's living with us. That makes 6 of us living in the cold water flat!! Possibly 7 if the Scottish girl is willing to live in a room without a window!!

Sunday, March 14, 2004

It looks like I'll be spending my summer here in the city... I have never stayed "home" a summer since before I started cadets. I'm not sure how I'll deal with the heat and my stinky feet (from sandals) that accompany summer days! Living in the cold water flat has allowed me to habituate to the cold even more than from living in Matapedia, it'll be strange when I don't have to bundle up. So I guess I just need to find myself a job and stick it out.

If I could deal with the chaos of Rogers Pass 3 summers in a row then surely Montreal should be fine. I like the convenience of the city but it's just the nature that I want. Montreal doesn't have the peaks to climb that the West does. Mount Royal is a nice gesture but it will never compare to the Rockies.

Staying in the city means that my feet can never really touch the earth, the soil. In the city there's always distance between us and the earth. Think about it, we wear socks, shoes and then step on a cement pavement. But when we are in the most natural places, we just have to remove our shoes and we can be so close to the earth.

I'm not a city mouse. For the summer I'd love to be close to the earth but practicality tells me to stay here for the lab and to get organized for grad school (GREs etc). If my feet are going to get dirty I'd rather it be from the soil and not from the dirt of the city.

Friday, March 12, 2004

Oooooooooh Rotty!!

SMILEY: Hallo jeder. Guten Abend. Vermutung, was ich? tue! Ich besuche Marisa. Im Augenblick ist sie am Telefon, aber, sobald sie weg erhält, werden wir SpongeBob Squarepants aufpassen:) Ich bin Trinkwasser und möglicherweise baldBIN ich in der Lage, meine Öffnung zu öffnen. Kristall wird zur Kirche ohne mich gegangen. Ich hoffe, daß sie nicht herausfindet, daß ich hier!! bin!

Jazz-Katze ist hier und Nicholas, aber sie sind gerade faul. Jazzkatze sitzt herum mit Eukalyptus. Nicholas hängt Oberseite unten vom Schlafsack. Meine Schwester ist im Raum Lauras. Wußten Sie, was?? Ich bin schließlich die ausgebildete Toilette gewesen. Ich bin 6 Jahre alt, also ist sie über Zeit. Brunnen, alle der ist. Hoffnung glauben Sie besserem Onkel Barry!

Love Smiley

Tuesday, March 09, 2004

I learned about existentialism today in history of psychology. It's quite interesting. But I don't think it really matters if we can find the true meaning of life. Why not find our own meanings in life or at least make some meaning out of the various experiences we have. I don't quite agree with Camus that we not able to realize our goals. Maybe if we have a broad goal like finding the aim of the universe, then we are destined to be like Sisyphus. However, if we can each work towards a more focused goal, we will eventually have a purpose and together come closer to realizing the ultimate goal.

We were not meant to solve problems alone. As human beings, we are very social animals and therefore to achieve any great goal, it takes the collective efforts of many of us, not the goal of one philosopher.

Yah, I know I feel weird writing this stuff on my blog. But it's what's on my mind. I was actually paying attention in history today and I got a lot out of it. Maybe I should listen more often.


I'm also beginning to feel overwhelmed. (ie. Like Jane was the past few days) My poster presentation and thesis will be due sooner than I realized. I still haven't found a supervisor's lab to do my honours thesis in for next year. I don't have a summer job/plans. And then there's my 4 other classes and their exams, but that's still a little while away.

As an organization freak, I get stressed mostly at this time of the semester. Most normal students get stressed at the end, when exams begin, but I'm an oddity. My stress peaks, weeks before everything is due. Just trying to imagine how I will possibly get it all done worries me.

My ideal life with its structure and organization is my brother's hell! Probably many other's too!

I gotta go and read, or at least try and use my time productively.

-Hasta Luego!!

Monday, March 08, 2004

I feel paralyzed. I've been sitting at my computer for hours doing a "little" assignment for my research experience class. It's not that it's difficult but more a fact that my brain is tired and not working efficiently. This has got to be unproductivity at its finest! Three hour later, my graph is done, my table half done and the written part of the results is a half of a page. The time we spend all for 5%?!

Terry's party was a success. Too bad Jane and Paige couldn't make it. This time I could see straight as compared to the toga party. Once again, my brothers lurked in our apartment till the following evening! (I hope lurk does not seem derogatory here-it's my favorite word;) It's good though 'cause if they stay here, it means they are comfortable.

That's an honour in itself- to stay comfortable in this cold-water flat! It's never warm, sometimes Luke-warm. I've really learned that 20C is not that warm!

I have to stop writing because I wanna finish my homework and I'm wearing Criss' puffy stretched blue hat. It is falling over my eyes and blinding me!!!

Sunday, March 07, 2004

Just writing a one liner like everyone else has...

Saturday, March 06, 2004

Feliz Cumpleanos Terrence Lawrence !

Tengo sueno. So tired and Terry and everyone will be here in a few hours. I shouldn't be writing on here. There's so much other stuff that I should be doing... Cleaning, studying psycholinguistics or icing the cake. I just said a bad word. My teacher told me that "should" is a bad word. When you say it, you have negative brain activities almost like when you're sad!

By the way, we're staying in the cold water flat for another year! We talked to Stephane- such a kind man. He's gonna reinsulate the East end of the flat and not increase our rent. This will lower our heat for sure. I know I bickered about the flat but it's great to have the space. Where else could we invite over so many people?!

I'm not drinking tonight, still recovering from last week's escapades! That walk home was enough and I ended up skipping my tutoring- it made me think about my priorities. Also I'm waking up early to go to step class so for those guests that will still be here- Don't get offended. I'm cashing in at midnight the latest!


Friday, March 05, 2004

Gambling in St Henri!!

I've vowed never to gamble mainly due to gambling problem running in my family (mom)! But right now, the girls and I have a bet going for how much next month's rent will be! We're all hoping for a lot less since it's warmed up considerably and less heat is being pumped out and lost!

The rules are less stringent than Bob Parker's. It is whoever is closest and you can go over!

We got a rendez-vous with Stephane- our landlord. I'm still waiting for him to get home. He's definitely not a Serge! ("It's da professional for the click click click")

Smiley got toilet trained today. Criss removed his tag (the "do not remove until delivering to customer" one with the barcode on it) off his bottom, it was so dirty. It looked like a dirty piece of toilet paper! Hence his toilet training.

Must eat! Auf Wiederzan

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Skunk in the City!!

"I was taking a romantic shower by myself yesterday when I realized it smelled like skunk..."

That quote actually complements my blog's title today.

On Monday night, I was sitting on my bed studying history when I smelled a rank smell. I first thought it was my feet (which it wasn't). It got stronger and stronger and I realized that it was coming from a skunk. I heard my roommates screaming and knew it wasn't my feet!

So, a skunk had been lurking outside of our flat and he must have been startled. The smell permeated the cold part of our flat and left the warm end smelling much better.

We sprayed perfumes and lit candles, hence Laura's romantic shower. There was nothing we could really do. I went to class the following day wondering if I smelled like skunk. People sat next to me in class, so it couldn't have been that bad!!

Luckily, by the time I arrived home, it was gone:)

On another note, spring looks like it's starting... Maybe we can say goodbye to our $600 heating bills (read my other entries for more info).

Monday was also Criss' birthday. We had a family celebration lastnight but I'm trying to plan another one with friends on the weekend. I have no idea who reads this, but if you're her friend can you tell me if Saturday is good for you! (I bet Mercury is the only person who reads this stuff...)

Gotta go->history exam demain