Saturday, April 30, 2005

A Saturday afternoon stroll

It's been raining for what seems like two straight weeks. Bummer. But at least it's not snowing and impossible to go outside. Today I took a walk in the drizzle along with my new camera. Now I am attempting to post a number of photos in one post. I've been dreaming of this day for weeks.


This is one of three churches that I came across during my walk. Its bells were a chimin' and I was impressed by its steeple, but I couldn't fit it in this picture.

Church on Church

Look, a church on Church. Ha ha ha, I never fail to amuse myself. Can't say there's a synagogue on Synagogue street, however.

Spring in my step...

Spring is in the air and the tulips are yet to bloom. I really like this picture. The contrast of the green grass and my crooked feet and the soil... ahhh.


Voila un petit Boulangerie. J'oublie qu'est ce qu'ils vendent a un boulangerie. Savez vous?


And here is a brick wall. I love bricks.

I hope this worked. I have just opened up a Flickr account but I have the free one so I think I have used up 50 percent of my monthly photo space. That bites. Maybe I'll have to splurge on a bigger size account so I can continue to do multiple photos in one post. And so I can share my photos with all the land. You can click on any picture here and see the rest of my album, though Rick says my pictures are ugly and I think he's probably right. Also check out my new sidebar addition. Yeah yeah yeah!

Friday, April 29, 2005

My trip to class

It takes fifteen minutes to bike to the bus stop.

It takes fifteen minutes for the bus to get to the subway.

It takes thirty five minutes to get to the school.

That is a total of one hour and five minutes, 50 of which are spent trying to learn Korean. And in a week's time I have learned how to read!!!

Korean is a piece of cake. ;)

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

I feel, I said

My childhood pet is dead and I don't feel exceptionally distraught about it. She was a good natured animal with an addiction to barking so perhaps that has something to do with my ambivalence regarding her death. Or maybe I'm just stone-hearted. This should probably be a post about Corky but I'm going to turn it into a post about myself because I'm the boss.

I cry easily over silly things. Movies, commercials, stories, pride, nervousness. I do not understand what makes me cry in those situations. Then I talk to people about serious circumstances; losing a close family member and that kind of thing, and I feel as though I could easily get through it. I don't have too many close relationships that I would collapse without. I feel strong on my own and sometimes I regret that lack of dependence on other people. Other times I pride myself on my strength.

Suffering heartbreak over a year ago was good for me because it allowed me to experience great emotion. Since then I have been much more aware of my emotional experiences, experiencing emptness and dissatisfaction when there is nothing to feel. There is often nothing to feel. When I feel elated or moved to tears I inwardly congratulate myself for feeling.

Back to the main point. Why is it that big things that should be monumental, like the death of my dog or a reunion with that ex-love last summer or the guided tour of Israel spent with peers, leave me feeling empty and blank, while a song, a glance, and a nice day make me feel like bursting? It seems backwards to me.

And now for a poem.

man and women in bed at 10 p.m.

I feel like a can of sardines, she said.
I feel like a band-aid, I said.
I feel like a tuna fish sandwich, she said.
I feel like a sliced tomato, I said.
I feel like it's gonna rain, she said.
I feel like the clock has stopped, I said.
I feel like the door's unlocked, she said.
I feel like an elephant's gonna walk in, I said.
I feel like we ought to pay the rent, she said.
I feel like we oughta get a job, I said.
I feel like you oughta get a job, she said.

I don't feel like working, I said.

I feel like you don't care for me, she said.
I feel like we oughta make love, I said.
I feel like we've been making too much love, she said.
I feel like we oughta make more love, I said.
I feel like you oughta get a job, she said.
I feel like you oughta get a job, I said.
I feel like a drink, she said.
I feel like a 5th of whiskey, I said.
I feel like we're going to end up on wine, she said.
I feel like you're right, I said.
I feel like giving up, she said.
I feel like I need a bath, I said.
I feel like you need a bath too, she said.
I feel like you oughta bathe my back, I said.
I feel like you don't love me, she said.
I feel like I do love you, I said.
I feel that thing in my now, she said.
I feel that thing in you now too, I said.
I feel like I love you now, she said.
I feel like I love you more than you do me, I said.
I feel wonderful, she said, I feel like screaming.
I feel like I can go on forever, I said.
I feel like you can, she said.
I feel, I said.
I feel, she said.

C. Bukowski
from Mockingbird Wish Me Luck, 1972

Since we last spoke

Corky ate her last ice cream cone and breathed her last breath.

Rick turned twenty four.

I learned Japanese.

I was bored to tears.

I sang with Ken.

I helped retiree Fran put on her watch at the bus stop. She told me she would pray for me.

As a fly on the wall, I observed an ESL class of mostly Russian women learning about family.

A word to the wise: Eye contact while singing is like kissing with your eyes open.

Must nap now. I’ll write more later.

Monday, April 25, 2005

The first job offers come rolling in

I emailed Ben at Footprints to remind him about D'Arcy and I, only because it has been a while since we have been in touch with him. He sent two job possibilities today, both for areas in and around Seoul.

The first offer:

School Name: Wonderland Sanbon
Contract Overview:
Salary: (min) 1,800,000 (max) 2,000,000won
Airfare: provided by school
Housing: single housing
Medical Coverage: 50%
Description of Duties and Opportunity Schedule: Teaching Hours: 25-30hr/week
Type of Students: kindergarten-adults
Number of Teachers:
Number of Foreign Teachers:

My review: There isn't too much information here. First of all, I have heard terrible things about the Wonderland chain (but I can't remember where from). The salary is on the low end and there's no mention of overtime, bonus, or vacations; all bad signs. The hours are standard, the level of students is fine by me. All in all I am not excited by it.

The second offer:

School Name: Top Kids English
Location and Start: City: Anyang
Start Date or Dates: June 1

Contract Overview: Salary: (min) 1,800,000 (max) 2,000,000won
Overtime: False
Airfare: Return airfare provided
Bonus: 1,800,000 - 2,000,000won upon completion
Housing: Housing provided with furniture
Vacations: Ten vacation days plus national holidays
Medical Coverage: 50%
Teaching Hours: 120 hours/month
Type of Students: elementary school
Number of Teachers:
Number of Foreign Teachers:

My Review: This one seems better than the first. They specify a bonus and vacation days. I have never heard of the school chain (if it is one) and I have no idea where the city of Anyang is.

Ben sent an email suggesting D'Arcy and I each accept one of these jobs. I don't think we will. They are both for June, and one says the starting date is June 1st so there's no way we can make that due to a June 8th convocation date, plus visa processing time once we have our diplomas in hand. I'm hoping we will find better contracts than these anyways. I want 2,000,000 Won/month at least which will be about $2000 CAD a month.

This is exciting!

Corky's not doing so great. I think we'll probably have to say goodbye to her tomorrow. But, luckily, Kwinter's in top condition!

Saturday, April 23, 2005

I love macro mode. And my new camera. And strawberries.

Happy Graduation to Me!

Just got back from Henry's camera store with new camera in hand! It's charging now. Charge charge charge. Curious what kind it is?

Look here.

The seller guy suckered us in for Olympus. I haven't read the reviews yet so I'm hoping it's good. If not I'll return it and buy the Canon because it's the same price anyway.

Tonight's plan: play with camera while avoiding obnoxious family friend's at all costs and trying not to hate Passover and the fact that the bread didn't have enough time to rise.

Daisy, Daisy...

Bubby (my grandmother) and Zaidy (my grandfather) are visiting for Passover from Montreal. They are 83 and 81 respectively and are really slowing down.

Bubby was born with a dislocated hip in the early twentieth century and had a childhood of casts leaving her with one leg shorter than the other. To compensate for this she always had one platform shoe and one regular shoe (specially made and matching; not one pink and one sneaker or anything). She's always been slow but in the last few years you can really see the changes. Not only is her walking difficult, but her mind is going. She was diagnosed with the early stages of Alzheimers a few years ago but it has always seemed to be staying in the early stages until this visit. She asks what day it is, what month it is, where we're going for dinner again and again during the drive to the restaurant, and the list goes on.

Today in the car my mother, myself, and my grandmother were squashed in the backseat trying to come up with things Bubby likes. I was asking "Do you like pizza?" "Do you like popcorn?" "Do you like candy?" and so on. She was answering normally. We asked about her favourite poem, which she has framed on the wall in her house, and she said "Oh yeah, I forgot all about that". My mom sang the first few lyrics of a song that Bubby used to sing to her when she was a little girl...

"Daisy, daisy, give me your answer true..."

We waited.

"I'm half crazy all for the love of you."

She sang in a quiet, far-off voice from her side of the car. And she sang the rest of the song.

I got out of the car to head to the subway (where they were dropping me off) with tears rolling down my cheeks. That flash of memory awakens me to the fact that she's otherwise lost. That moment of clarity exposes the fog. And the fact that she once sang to my mother in a happier time makes my throat fill and my eyes well.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Two months left!

Now that school is finished (!) I will be turning my attention towards other things. The first is learning Korean. Yep. I think it might be worthwhile to learn some of the language before I move there to avoid being an illiterate. Though I’m sure it would be an interesting social psychological investigation of the experiences of those unable to communicate in the language of the majority. I’d rather avoid the stress of being unable to order food or ask for directions to the bathroom. I have a Teach Yourself book and double CD that I intend to start working on during my bus and subway commute to and from my TESL course that begins tomorrow!

Which leads me to the second new attention-consuming adventure: my TESL course that begins tomorrow! I have no idea what to expect. Will it be fun and easy? Will it be challenging and time-consuming? Will the other students in the class be cool and interesting or dumb and pathetic? Hopefully it will be easy, useful, fun, and filled with cool and interesting people including a cute boy with which I can have a quick summer fling (cross your fingers, guys).

Minor tangent: My mother thinks that I am a mild drunk with low-class morals because of the things she reads on my blog. I don’t know why she would think that. She wonders if I’m being honest here and says that I sound lonely and pathetic, and like I’m trying to project myself in false ways. I really try to be honest here, not that I frequently reveal innermost feelings, so I wonder where she gets these ideas from. Then again, I’m pretty sure she has only read about four posts over the last four months. Whatever, end of tangent.

My third and final mind-occupation is to find a digital camera. This is where I need your input, people! I want the following: 4.0 megapixels (give or take a megapixel), 3X optical zoom at least, a movie feature, and good memory card capability and power source. I want it to be small and not too expensive (below $500 CAD). I used my brother’s Canon Powershot Elph something this weekend and liked the style a lot, so I’m leaning in that direction, but if anyone has a particular suggestion that I can consider, please send it my way.

That is all for now. I’m excited about my class tomorrow and my bike ride to the bus stop in the morning should be thrilling. I’m estimating a 25 minute bike ride, a 13 minute bus ride, and a 30 minute subway ride. That’s some prime Korean learning time! Or people watching. Or ipod listening. Or sleeping…

Oh, to be a rockstar

The following shall be made available at the time of the Artist's scheduled load in:

  • If possible a dedicated phone line, to be used for Internet access
  • A generous supply of ice backstage
  • 23 - 16oz cups - please No Styrofoam
  • 2 cases of highest quality local or premium beer/ale
  • 16 Liters still water (ie: Evian, etc)
  • 6 one pint (small) cartons of premium Orange Juice
  • 6 one pint (small) cartons of premium Cranberry Juice
  • Assorted sodas
  • One can salted mixed nuts
  • Chips and Salsa
  • A Deli Tray containing: Fresh Bagels & Breads, assorted Meats and Cheeses
  • 1 jar of peanut butter and 1 jar of jam (your favourite)
  • Fresh fruit assortment including: apples, bananas, kiwis, mangos, pears, oranges, etc.
  • Coffee, milk, and sugar
  • Hot water, Tea (Herbal and black), honey, lemon
  • 8 Clean Towels
  • 6 Red Bull Energy Drink
  • 10 packages of Emer'gen-C "super energy booster powder"
  • Exotic mood modifiers
  • 5 stamped (preferably local) postcards


  • A hot meal of excellent quality shall be provided after sound check. There shall be vegetarian meal options if need be. (Please do not consider cheese as a main ingredient in vegetarian meals; it is acceptable in moderate amounts, however). Meals should include salads and/or fresh vegetables. If no hot meal is available, a buyout in the amount of $20 USD, - per person is acceptable. There will be a traveling party of Five (5) total.

- end-

So in the end the Shins got all that food listed above (which we bought at the grocery store like slaves to royalty), lunch fetched for them, and twenty five Canadian dollars for dinner, all between 4:00 and 8:30 when the show started. After the show they got pizza. Man.

Pictures will follow shortly, but for now I have to spend five hours in the car with grandparents and mother. Oh dear.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Bonjour, Quebec!

Tim Horton's ripped us off huge; $26 for two sandwiches, two soups, and two drinks. What the heck? What ever happened to fast food? Should have opted for KFC. Mmm.. big crunch.

In Montreal. Seeing the Shins tomorrow!

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Oh yeah, I'm hardcore. Always wear protection, kids.

Show me your wound

Now the toe is ready for the website. I just knocked it against the dog gate at the bottom of the stairs. I think I cracked the nail and I am now bleeding. Instead of dealing with it I have wrapped it with paper towel, taped the bandage on, and am hoping the throbbing will go away soon. Jeez louise.

The Move

The move is complete. But U-Haul seriously does blow. So like I wrote yesterday, we had ordered our truck for the morning. It was supposed to be ready for pick up by 10:00am (not 9:00am like I had thought) and they were to call us the day before to let us know which location would have a truck for us. They didn’t call so we called yesterday morning and they said a truck would only be ready for 1:00. At 1:00 Rick and Carina went to pick up the truck only to find out that it was broken down and they would have to drive some far distance to another location to get a working truck. They got back to the apartment at 2:30. We had intended to start packing up at 11:30.

Then there was someone else using the back door so we couldn’t actually start moving until 3:30. I was not very pleased with the whole situation. I like to do things as soon as I’m ready to do them, and roadblocks piss me off but luckily it passed with the help of pizza and D’Arcy. Thanks so much to Carina and D’Arcy who made moving out much easier than it could have been. D’Arcy said “that’s what friends are for.” That really touched me.

We drove into Toronto at 7:30pm and the unloading went much faster. On the unloading end I have Wendy and Matt to thank. Wend, you could have lost a toe for me, but I guess that’s what friends are for. Sorry our plans for a fun night fell through. :(

There’s this website called Show Me Your Wound that describes injuries that people have suffered and shows graphic, nasty pictures. One I saw was of a toenail that had been ripped from a girl’s toe when she was moving a treadmill from one level in her house to another. Ugh. It’s incredibly disgusting, but it was on my mind as we were moving and I made sure to wear shoes the whole time. Until later that night when I was trying to set up my room and I dropped a full shelf on my toe. Now I have a small cut and a spreading bruise. Nothing to send to Show Me Your Wound, thankfully.

So home sweet home. So far so good; there’s more than just oatmeal and stale tortillas to eat. And the internet is no longer broken down like it had been since we got home, so that’s good. Our stuff is still everywhere but that will be cleaned up soon. And tomorrow morning I leave for Montreal.

I really can’t believe school is done. Feels pretty good.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

U-Haul blows

That's right, BLOWS. It's 11:30. We're supposed to be moving now. And there's no truck. It was supposed to be ready for 9:00 and now they are telling us it won't be ready until 1:00. I'm pissed. I'm tired. I just want to go home.

Oh, by the way, I didn't sleep well last night. Damn the man!

A beautiful day to move

In true Jessica form I finished the 126 multiple choice exam in exactly 48 minutes. You are allowed to leave after the 45 minute mark. Hopefully my guessing abilities pulled through 'cause I think I only knew 26 for sure. What are the odds I'll get the 88% necessary to get an A in the course? If I understood odds, I would be able to tell you. It's unlikely, that's all I can say.

It's also 10:21 and we have yet to find out where the U-Haul truck can be picked up or if there is a U-Haul truck for us at all. Rick has one goddamn responsibility... We are supposed to actually start moving out in one hour. I'd like to see if that happens. I hate waiting. I want to do things now now now. Grrr.

Anyway, the important thing to realize now is that I am officially through with McMaster and this stage of my life. Oh, I do have to grade one more essay. I told this guy I would review his grade last week and have put off actually doing it. Damn. But besides that, I'm done. Done!!! As I sat in PE1, the enormous gym lined with folding tables and chairs, filled with coughing idiots, math students typing away in their Casio calculators, and invigilators who try to rustle their papers as much as possible, I looked around and sighed. Good bye McMaster. So long, Hasta la Vista. Peace out. Yahoo!!!

Friday, April 15, 2005

That's more like it!


This is Murphy, Wendy's scraggly mutt with buck lower teeth. He looks like a rectangle with legs, don't you think? Usually he has pretty palm-tree ears but he's unnaturally afraid of me so they're pulled back in doggie terror. Silly Murphy.


Should be studying.

Hate Studying.

Rather be dreaming, sleeping, swimming, sunning, reading, writing, dancing, singing, flirting, kissing, hugging, cuddling, chatting, thinking, flying, driving, playing, walking, swinging or something.

Wendy, you read my mind. Murphy is stupid.

Oh, the places you'll go

The end is near. The apartment is looking barren. The cable and phone companies have been contacted. The moving truck ordered. And here I have to study for my last exam. I'm finding it rather difficult to concentrate.

Tomorrow morning I write my final exam of my degree. Then I hurry home to help load everything into the truck. I really hate moving. Carrying heavy things up and down elevators after having woken up at the crack of dawn to get to my 9:00 exam is not my idea of a good time. Then we'll probably take our helpers out for lunch before heading back to Toronto. Back to the parent's house. Two months of parental co-habitation and then I'm set free; to live in a cramped apartment in a cramped city of millions.

Freedom, I await you!

Last night I helped celebrate a friend's birthday. Her well-traveled cousin was there and with his "spent-too-much-time-in-Ireland" accent laced with an Canadian East coast twang, he declared that Asia is "shit". Why, I wondered? According to him it's dirty and crowded and "shit". That's all he could say. When pressed, he said that for the most part, travelling as an English speaker is pretty good because everyone can speak a little English no matter where you go. But going to Asia is like "going to the fuckin' moon". Everything is different. Awww, poor you. So they don't cater to your every English speaking desire? That definitely warrants the "shit" description. Anyway, forget him.

Freedom, I await you!

For now I have to get to work and finish reading about sexual disorders for my abnormal psych exam. Did you know that according to my textbook, 24% of women have experienced failure to achieve an orgasm, and as many as 10% of women have never experienced an orgasm at all?

Orgasm, I await you! ;)

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Stats Results

Dear Jessica,

You got a grade of 76% on the third exam. I'm not supposed to tell you your final grade, but you can compute it for yourself and then realize that I'll make allowance for your status as an undergrad in a course with PhD students. How shall I return the exam to you?

Regards, John

Sweet. Without said 'allowances' I have earned an A- in the course. Keep your fingers crossed that he'll 'allowance' me up to an A.

It would be funny if I emailed him back and asked how to compute my grade. Math? What?

The Newest Tortilla Masterpiece

Primavera Party!

Ingredients: Two week old end of zucchini stump, fairly squishy broccoli, cheddar cheese, Kraft parmesan cheese, some kind of pasta sauce (opened and mostly used), garlic, basil.

Prep: Cut and stirfry broccoli and zucchini in pan, add garlic. Spread pasta sauce generously onto tortilla. Layer cheddar in a nice line-up along the middle. Add hot veggies on top, allowing cheese to suffer the heat’s consequences. Sprinkle with basil and lots of parmesan. Try, and fail, to wrap tightly and neatly.

Rating: Wowzer! This may be the best one yet! I am impressed with myself. Thoroughly impressed. I might even do this one again sometime.

Three more tortillas left. I’m thinking I might want to get rid of my last two eggs. Or my last two containers of yogurt. Hmmm.

If you want to sing out, sing out

Another night out dissolving into karaoke bliss. I love it. Guess I love the spotlight and it's my only opportunity to shine. Oh well, I'll take that.

A boy told me that I have a very nice voice and beautiful hair. And he wasn't even drunk or trying to hit on me. Thanks to that guy. It must have been the dandruff shampoo. (By the way, the itch is gone!)

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

A case of really-itchy-head

Waiting for Andrea to call to say it’s time to leave for another ‘goodbye friend’ evening. She and I met in second year and we’ve been friends since, but now she’s going back to her home town of Petawawa and then off to teacher’s college. I’m not sure where she got in.

I used expired dandruff shampoo just now. A sudden case of really-itchy-head sent me searching under the sink for some kind of relief and I came across a little green bottle of Denorex or something. It’s nasty smelling stuff and it expired in November. If I break out in some terrible rash we’ll know why.

I don’t have dandruff or lice, just really-itchy-head, and the expired Denorex seems to be working. But I did have lice in grade three. How humiliating. I wanted the earth to swallow me whole.

Tortilla creation number four and five

The tortilla creations continue as I try to make do with the remnants of my festering fridge.

Tortilla creation number four: Cheese Sooprees

Ingredients: The scrapings of the cream cheese container, shredded cheddar cheese, and leaf lettuce.

Prep: spread, shred, wrap.

Rating: Not too shabby; the gooey cream cheese filled the crevices of the wrap well, and the leaf lettuce added a nice crunch.

Tortilla creation number five: Apple Cinnamon Delight

Ingredients: one Empire apple, cinnamon, oatmeal flakes, some butter, Aunt Jemima syrup.

Prep: In fry pan, melt butter and heat up apples. Sprinkle in some cinnamon and oats. Then dump more oats in for good measure. When mixture seems soft enough, lay on tortilla and drizzle syrup on top. More… a little more…okay. Try to fold it so that syrup won’t spill out all over your hands and plate, forcing you to lick everything like your dog.

Rating: Not as good as it sounds. I don’t know what it was. The apple was not as flavourful as it could have been; maybe Empires are not good ‘cooking’ fruits.

Blasted! Back to the drawing board. My ingredients are running lower and lower.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Called it

Man, glad that's over. It was worse than I expected. Silent pauses and everything. I'd rather redo a date I had last summer. He was completely silent during lunch. Finally I said "you don't talk much, do you." His reply: "I don't talk when I eat." Blank stare.

A prelude to office christmas parties

Last week it hit me. It sucks to hang out socially with people you’re not friends with. What am I talking about? I've known that all along. But hear me out.

I had planned that “Sociology Goodbye Party” and wanted to leave as soon as everyone got there and we said hello. I had drinks with my fellow TAs and the prof we worked for and I was internally counting the minutes until I could get out of there. I’m sure other people must feel the same way.

It’s awkward, there’s nothing to talk about, and everyone would rather be somewhere else.

Today I have to go for a “Statistics Class goodbye lunch” which wouldn’t be so bad if it was just for the students. But the professor is coming too and around him everyone turns into sweaty palmed teenagers at a high school dance. I would have thought that at the PhD level these people would be on fairly comfortable terms with the professor, but he obviously makes them shudder with fear. It’s kind of funny to watch, actually, since I’m not in their position and therefore don’t have to care. Though I am counting on him for a reference letter. Was. I do enjoy the company of my classmates, actually, but I don’t like contrived social gatherings that would never naturally occur.

Guess I’ll just have to buck up and take it since they’re bound to occur for the rest of my life.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Screw this...

I'm done and it's printing. Eight pages for one goddam question and it's not even right I bet. Ah well. Who needs a good reference letter or good grades to get into graduate school? Who needs graduate school at all, for that matter. I'm going to find my husband in Korea and live happily ever after teaching snot-nosed brats how to fill in a crossword puzzle.


Don't know what I'm doing. Feel like crying. Would rip off all posters from wall in fiery rage had not already done that yesterday. Hate statistics.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Leaving my mark

Today was an ultimate day of procrastination. I have every question except one tough one done for my exam so I figured that doing anything else would result in a sudden moment of ‘eureka!’ that would send me in to statistics genius-hood. That didn’t happen.

But I did spend a good amount of time reading the blog of a father of two young daughters, one of which was born only two months ago. He is so involved in their lives. That impresses me to no end. Also, a twenty-something girl living and working in New York provided me with a few good hours of exam-procrastination. There are a lot out there. This one I have been reading for a little while, but spent time today looking through archives chronicling her dating escapades and move to NYC from Boston.

My itunes has been playing on random for seven hours in a row. It could go on for 3.6 days without repeating a song. I like how it tells you in days. It’s like when you’re a kid and you want to know how many days until you’re going to Disney Land and your parents tell you that you’re going in five sleeps. I used to ask my mother the time and she would say “it’s a quarter after”. A quarter after what?? How was I to know?

I also discovered a most delectable dessert that I have been missing out on for years; a tortilla filled with syrup. Mmm. It’s like the lazy-man’s french toast. It kind of reminds me of Zaidy’s matzah farfle. Regardless, it’s good. I bought tortillas last night during an 11 pm grocery run, forgetting to get anything good to put in them. Today for lunch (and dinner) I had leftover beef stirfry strips, leaf lettuce, cheddar cheese, and leftover Memories of Bangkok peanut sauce. That was a great creation. But now the strips are gone and I have been trying to think of tasty and delicious ways to fill the remaining seven tortillas. The syrup was good. I have an apple; maybe I’ll fry it up and put it AND syrup together. I’ve got a salmon fillet and some broccoli. I also have mayonnaise, salad dressing, pasta, and lots of oatmeal. I have cucumber, grapefruit, and cereal. Any suggestions? I kind of wish I had peanut butter and jelly to make a Mexican variation of the ol’ faithful, but I don’t. And I’m moving in less than a week! So there’s no reason to stock up now. Oh, I have freezer burned green giant peas too. And hot chocolate mix.

So today I also packed up a lot of things in my room to take home on a quick “make the move easier” run to Toronto that Rick and I are planning for Tuesday. I took all my posters off the wall and rolled them into their poster holder thing. And I violently tore my road maps of Louisville and Rochester, and a number of other random cities, off the wall. They have left blue marks of sticky tack ALL over the walls like nasty chicken pock scars. It’s bad! I hope the landlords don’t charge me for repairs or something. I also had hammered six wooden Ikea picture frames directly into the wall with thick nails, leaving six well-spaced holes. I filled them with the nails but they are very conspicuous. I’m a bad tenant. Ah well.

After all of this time I am still as unsure about how to approach this stats question as I was this morning. Maybe if I go eat a broccoli-oatmeal tortilla I’ll figure it out.

Update: Writing posts first in word has paid off! Damn Blogger!

These are my stats compadres. Without them I am lost. I am without them now, so I am lost, and the exam is due on Tuesday. Sigh. But don't we look cute and studious?

Saturday, April 09, 2005

I hope that you liked me

My mom called in tears last night to let me know that little Corky has been given 4 - 6 weeks to live. Little Corky is our Pomeranian. She's thirteen years old and is dying from lung cancer; the air was blue where she worked.

Apparently she will not die on her own, but her coughing will eventually get really bad so we will have to bring her to the vet to put her out of her misery. In the mean time she's not suffering so my parents won't do anything. My grandparents are coming for a visit in a week and a half and my mom wants for them to say goodbye. This dog is my mom's princess, you have to understand.

We got her in 1991 when I was about 8 or 9. I remember how it went; my parents went out to do some errands because my mother was having a party for her staff that evening. When they came back they brought with them a puppy. She was tiny and rust-coloured and my mom claims that I said something like "is it real?" but I have no memory of such a thing. They had seen her at a pet store at Place des Sources in Dollard, the same mall where the annual outdoor fair came, and they had fallen in love with her. My mom had the same kind of dog when she was a kid.

She came into the house and joined our sole cat, Blacky. She moved with us to Toronto and welcomed Kwinter, the daschund. Then Blacky was hit by a car and we got two more cats, Shadow and Tigger. Then we found Oliver and had to have him. During all of this time she ruled the roost, enjoying special treatment of sleeping upstairs with my parents and waking my mother up as early as four o'clock for breakfast. She barked for everything which is why I used to joke about her upcoming death. I'm not fond of barking.

She's a sweet dog though, despite the spoiled brattiness, so it's a shame she's dying. But she's had a long dog life and she'll be happier with Shadow, Tigger, Blacky, our multiple hamsters (Hammy, Fozzy, Mr. Squeaks, Andy), guinea pigs (Mary Ellen and Sweet Pea), birds (Sunny and Snowy), and fish (uhhh) up in pet heaven. Anyway, she has about four weeks to live so anyone who wants to pay her a good-bye visit should do so ASAP.

On the subject of death, a girl I know was justifying why she couldn't go to a funeral for someone who lived in her residence with her: "I wouldn't go to her birthday..."

Friday, April 08, 2005

...come on down! You're the next contestant...

First exam down, rah rah rah! I haven't seen what 7:00 am looks like on my alarm clock for quite some time and I hope not to again for even more time.

My art exam went well. Lots of writing non-stop for two hours tired me out. I think I got what I wanted to out of this class, which was to know at least something about art and to find an appreciation for it that does not come naturally. Museums usually bore me. Now I look forward to visiting them to check out the work I studied and to find other works that fit into the movements that I am now aware of. Maybe even to learn about other movements that weren't covered. Fait accompli.

I came home and had one of those I-don't-want-to-wake-up-because-it-means-I-have-to-start-working-on-statistics naps. You know those ones, where you wake up, look at the clock, and then close your eyes again and try to fall back asleep. Usually I am successful. I slept until 2:30 and then wasted time. Here I am now. No statistics work has been done yet and the take-home exam is due on Tuesday. I need to get an 82.5% on the exam.

I always thought that the contestant selection on the Price is Right is random, and everyone in the audience is a blubbering fool. Apparently I was wrong and the entire audience is interviewed beforehand so a varied demographic sample can be selected. I had no idea. I feel cheated by Bob and the world.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

What's your name, little girl, what's your name?

Have you ever noticed that once you start thinking about something, you are reminded of it wherever you go? I’m not talking about when you can’t stop thinking about a person you know, or a food you crave, but an idea.

A few weeks ago, Rick, Carina and I somehow ended up talking about our own names. Do you feel connected to your name? Could you change your name? Does your name define you? I say no. My name is Jessica. To me it rings like a John Smith name. There were three Jessica’s in my grade one class and four in my camp cabin one year. When I think about myself and what being myself means, I do not think of my name as a key component. When I refer to myself in my head I don’t use my name. I could live without it, I think.

I felt compelled to find out how other people feel about this and discovered something that perhaps is not too surprising. Those people with unique names, like D’Arcy and Clara, do feel as though their names and their selves are connected. Those with average and typical names are more nonchalant about the importance of their name.

I recently learned in Art History class about an artist named Magritte. You may have seen his legendary work called “The Treachery of Images”, featuring a perfectly formed pipe with the words “ceci n’est pas une pipe” or “this is not a pipe” written neatly below it. A surrealist, Magritte was questioning our tendency to equate names of things with the things themselves. We define objects before really understanding what they are by placing them into neat categories. Names. Language. He reveals the arbitrariness of language and insists that we come to know things as they are and not as how they are called.

Know me before you know Jessica.

The straw that broke the camels back was a post by Alan, an English teacher in Taiwan. He wrote about the ease with which the Taiwanese select and change their English names. I would doubt that changing their Taiwanese names is as simple, but apparently you can just show up one day to school and announce that your name is no longer Sally, but is now Pumpernickel. Easy as pie. The weirdest thing is that Alan used the title I had considered using for this post idea before I posted it. But then, I thought it was a bit cliché. ;)

Are you attached to your name?

This is not a pipe.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

No more pencils, no more books

Hip hip hooray! It's the last day of school today! Too bad we're not having a pizza party like we might have in highschool. Maybe I'll have to have my own. Anyone?

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Good Luck Finding a Job!

The party was a huge success! And by huge I mean that people actually came, there was plenty of food for everyone, and things ran smoothly.

A total of 24 people showed up, all except one of which were females. Everyone wore a name tag with “Goodbye my name is…” printed on it, created by yours truly. Ellen made a huge and lovely cake that said “Good Luck Finding a Job” which everyone found humourous and sadly truthful.

The funniest part of all of it was that I didn’t really want to talk to any of them that much. I mean, it was nice to see everyone coming together for a goodbye party, but after saying hello and thanking them for coming I had very little interest in striking up conversation. What else is there to say besides, “what are your plans?” I was happy to be able to play hostess with Ellen and eat all of the leftover cake. Now I feel slightly ill, but at least it hasn’t put me right to sleep.

Here’s a list of where people are going next year, after having graduated with a degree in sociology. Maybe you’re more interested than I am…

U of T grad school
South Korea (!)
No idea
We’ll see
Mohawk College – post grad
Hopefully Australia
Australia if I get in
Western Ed.
No clue!
Trent Ed.
Brock or York Ed.
Queen’s Ed.
Trent Ed.
McMaster grad school
Brock Ed.
Guelph or U of T grad school
Traveling and Living
Buffalo Ed.
Costa Rica! And Toronto

Out of 23 people, at least 9 people are going to teacher’s college. That is 39%. That’s pretty huge, I’d say. But I think we’d all agree that my plans are the coolest.

Time to study Art History.

Mystery meat

Tacos are delicious, don’t you agree? Rick and I had a tasty Neuman dinner of soft tacos; dripping greasy taco sauce, crispy onion, grated cheese, salsa, tomatoes, ground beef. All the fixin’s. I can just eat those little packages of deliciousness one after the other. Which I did.

Anyway, the strange part of the story is that shortly after eating Rick and I both returned to our respective rooms to study. And we both fell soundly asleep from about 7:45 until 10:30. Then we both woke up coincidentally at the same time and watched the end of Supernanny, laughing because of how weird it all was. Did Old El Paso add something to our taco mix?

Monday, April 04, 2005

They make different kinds because they know I like different kinds

Dammit. I just wrote an entire good post and then pressed the “publish post” button, expecting the publishing screen to pop up obediently like it should. But no, the dreaded white error screen came up instead and all was lost. I hate that.

I also hate that damn Mott’s girl. Why do they have to play that commercial so often?

Two people in the last four years have told me that I should go into journalism. Maybe that’s a sign?

At Joanna’s sweet sixteen there was a fortune teller. I know she was credible because she knew that my friend had back problems and he didn’t have a limp or a hump or anything! She read my palm and looked up at me with surprise. She told me that I have something special about me; that I know things that people have to learn. She told me that I am psychic. News to me. She said that I would go into interior decoration and that my relationship wasn’t going so well. The interior decoration made some sense to my sixteen year old self, for I did enjoy a good Trading Spaces now and then, but my relationship not going well? No kidding. How can a relationship go well when there is none to speak of?

I would be interested to see what a fortune teller would predict for me at this point. Really I don’t believe in that kind of thing. Horoscopes? Bullshit. Fate? Nah. God? I don’t think so (in the pensive way, not the adamant way). Someone once told me he believes in chance. I guess that is about right for my belief system as well.

I have a stats meeting today, my last stats class and psych class, and the sociology good bye party tomorrow, my last undergraduate class on Wednesday, and my first exam on Friday. I’ll be finished everything next Saturday. We booked the moving van today.

I can't stop loving them. I just love them, the way they taste!

Friday, April 01, 2005

Collages can be more than 4 pictures. Go figure.

The end of an era

Hooray! My tutorials are finished! I never have to plan another tutorial for as long as I live... or until I'm in grad school one day. And I guess I'll be planning lessons all the time next year. Shit. My life is a nightmare.

There's cake in the lounge. I think I want to eat it. I love cake.