Emergency!
Tuesday, January 31, 2006
  Oh please oh please....
Found out today, that I am above water financially again, which is cool. Actually it's really cool, but only to the point that I'm actually debt-free right now. I wonder how long that lasts...

Update: The answer is that the end of my financial woes was extremely shortlived. As I was writing that, my mom phoned me and informed me she was taking it back out, because the extra I'd discovered today was actually my rebate check, that my dad had deposited. She wants it to pay off the mastercard though. Fair. I should have enough for a bus pass at least, but not a hell of a lot of much else. That pisses me off. I mean, I understand, but talk about a killjoy.

I'm so tired of constantly owing Adam money. Every month the poor boy helps me out. And that's not right. I mean, I should be able to take care of myself, and I can't seem to do that. I'm trying, with the job thing, and trying to make ends meet with that and what my parents help me out with, but it's not working out so hot. I'm very apprehensive about growing up to be financially inept like my dad's sisters.

Part of me wants to tell Adam that we should just go with seperate food purchases and meals, simply for the fact that I could be cheaper if I didn't have the guilt of feeding him crap food accompanying me. I enjoy what we have now ("the Deal") though too. There is disparity however at what "stage" of life we are at. He got to skip the "I'm a student, therefore I have to eat crap food because I have no money" stage, and I should be in that stage, and instead am in a luxurious stage of, "I have a budding career, and now I eat great", that I cannot necessarily afford on my budget. That said though, again, it's not that I don't enjoy it, I just don't know if I can keep doing it realistically.

I could quit smoking too, that would help. It would be an extra $118 a month, but which is easier to cut? Smoking or food? I'll let you guess.

Entertainment? Out.

And one more thing. I think I'm spending too much money on coffee. I hate that it's come down to this, but I'm going to have to cut that out for a while.

Fuck. Here today, I was so excited, because I thought, "maybe I can start saving. Maybe I can keep myself out of debt with Adam permanently, because I would really like that. Maybe I can get a headstart on saving money for when John comes to see me."

I'm so upset with myself right now. Like, FUCK. I'm sounding like Durran.

Anyone who throws "oh baby, we're so sympathetic-s" at me is going to get killed. I'm not in terrible shape, I'm just unhappy at my irresponsibility, and I'm unhappy that I'm complaining about it when there are other people (friends) who are in much worse shape than I am.
 
Friday, January 27, 2006
  Proof that the bible is true

The good news is that I'm not hungover from a delightful infusion of "Black Velvet" [1] into my liver last night, but I do still feel the penchant to yarg stomach stew all over the place given the wrong amount of jostling.

My father has written an interesting paper. He will be presenting it in London, England. I'm very proud of him.

We've been talking a lot more than we usually do lately, (dad and I) which I'm really enjoying. It turns out that I'm not the only one who has a well-hid fascination with nuclear tests, and we've been talking about that a lot, as well as our country's inauguration into being "Jesusland", as Joel has succinctly joked about in the past. In regards to nuclear tests in particular though, my father has put me onto a book to find...that I would put on here, but just realized would be a bad idea, because then my father would find my blog (le gasp!). He's been searching the internet fairly strenuously to devise the best plan possible to obtain the book. By best plan, I mean cheapest plan. If you're curious though, email me and I'll give you the title. And you can call me a wimp, because I deserve it now.

I skipped my morning class today, to stay home and do an assignment that I thought was due today. It's due next Friday. Despite this, my teacher took it in anyways, because she was genuinely curious about what my collective thought was (ie: ranting and raving graded on a "checkmark" or "checkmark-minus" basis) about.

I actually saw in the news yesterday that the Mason band (Hobbema) is thinking about passing a law allowing them to banish gang members, substance abusers, and other violent offenders from their reserve for indeterminable amounts of time. So I ranted on that, but honestly, I'm not sure still what to make of it.

One interesting thing that I've been thinking about though, in regards to native gangs specifically, is the idea of a loss of self. For example, you have an Aboriginal student who is in an institutional setting and not learning anything about his or her culture, (heritage, policy, etc.), and then is hardpressed to make the things that they learn at home necessarily relevant to themselves. There is a generational gap between the Aboriginal as a completely assimilated minority, and the Aboriginal dealing with the lifelong struggle to cope with the damage suffered at residential schools or missions. Thus there is this grey zone where it is too hard to step backwards and become familiarized with history and culture, and too foreboding to step foreward into the realm of assimilated population. It's a very daunting position to be in.

Returning to my original statement on native gangs however...throw this identity crisis in with the combination of third world conditions on a lot of reserves (third world infant mortality rates, and death rates, for instance), a hornet's nest of policy to abide by to get anything done or achieved for a band, abject poverty, shortage of housing, a traumatized history, and the press to assimilate, it is not surprising that the statistics for gang members are rising. It is not even a problem unique to Aboriginals alone.

In short, the more I think about it, the more I think that Mel Buffalo and Co. may be headed in the wrong direction with banishing the "ne're do wells", because it is like creating a rift within a rift. In schools, studies have shown that for an Aboriginal student, half of the dilemna of learning in a euro-centric institution stems from alienation. Buffalo will essentially be alienating members of his own band, as well as members from other bands who live on Hobbema and putting them out into the cold.

This gets touchy from here on out. Feel free to complain if I get offensive. Does Mr. Buffalo honestly think that by banishing misbehaving people from the band, he will be helping them? There is no denying that the situation of violence especially in Hobbema is quite critical, but this strikes me as a drastic move in the wrong direction. Why not instead focus on the roots of the problems in the community and work from there to dispell violence and gang participation? Bring people from the outside in to help, rather than turfing out community members. And I dislike how we are all so ready to just sit back and watch this happen, as we've watched the crisis in Hobbema escalate over the years, rather than jumping in and offering to help. I think that the police have been of great assistance to Hobbema, but I certainly have not seen the government step in and offer any assistance.

When there was an Aboriginal community down east a few years ago that had a critical situation regarding gas huffing, people pulled together, the government pulled together, and the problem was somewhat effectually addressed. I won't say very, because I don't think the government has been "very" anything to Aboriginal peoples, except terrible. Anyways, I see Hobbema as needing assistance in a form that the rest of Alberta and Canada are quite capable of giving, whether it be extra social workers, more social programs, more law enforcement, or simply, more funds for the band to put towards this. Do you know how hard it is for a band to wrangle any kind of funds or assistance from the government? Holy crap. The more I read of Government Aboriginal policy, the more I am simply agog at the hurdles present in them. And some of this is evident already, in housing shortages, and well shortages.

Returning to that Third World thing: There were two reserves (one in northern Ontario), and one in Quebec who "recently" came into the news as having E. Coli in their water supply. The Quebec reserve was the newsmaker. However, both of these reserves when spoken to, stated that the E. Coli had been in the water for two or more years prior to the media attention, and that simply no one had paid attention at the time.

Rant rant rant!


[1] Government brand Canadian Whiskey
 
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
  "It's easier to have your mind to yourself once your friends have passed on." -Dan
Have you ever sat down and tried to blog, and not had anything resembling a sentence enter your head? Blogging truly is the demise of the writer. Too much reliance on impromptu genius, and no planning! In fact, everyone is now a writer. It doesn't matter if we have blogs to chronicle bowel movents (for our own purposes hopefully, but this is questionable if it were in blog form) or to talk about our "vacation-to-Disney
-Swampland-that-was-so-much-better-than-anyone-else's-because-I-blogged-it" [1]. No, I don't have links-- that is not the point.

Admittedly though, in a time where it isn't hard to be clever because everyone's life is easily tragic in it's own little electronic progressive way, it is a little more disparaging to think to oneself "I am going to write a great piece of literature that will stand out enough that someone might publish it."

When I was younger, I had two types of things that I would write. Epically long action adventure, or somewhat contemporary philosophic stories. The epically long action adventures were like chocolate, and the (trust me btw, the made-up name of that genre sounds way cooler then what I actually wrote was) other one was a manifestation of something I felt would be meaningful--that would stick out and be meaningful to someone else. All the things I ever read that actually grabbed me, were things that I connected with, and I had a sharp retention of how authors achieved that, and that this (in my mind) must be what sells a novel.

So....in all this rambling diatribe, you can see that I am perhaps blocking myself from working any further on what I've begun with "Maiden of the Counter" because I'm hideously intimidated by the world. Plus, being cynical enough and lazy enough that it might not be worth the effort to finish it, oftentimes becomes a niggling thought.

But I'll still try! [2]

I've discovered that I have an arch nemesis in my EDPS 474 class. He was in one of my classes last year, though I don't recall which one. EDPS 310? In anycase, I've just made myself into google-bait, but lightening doesn't strike twice on the same blog, does it?

This dude, let's call him "Dood", just exacerbates me a little bit. I would say "to no end", but really, he's just making an ass of himself. Everytime I say something in the class, he's gotta follow it up with something attempting to either derail me (has not worked yet), or make me look like a jerk (possibly worked yesterday when I was in "super keener mode" on the subject of our collective thoughts only being one page). In anycase, it is actually kind of fun, because he seems like a guy who is arrogant because he thinks he's better than anyone else, and I look forward to bugging the hell out of him by proving him wrong. Constantly. Or maybe I'll invite him to be in a study group. In either case, it works out well if I aggravate him instead of him aggravating me.

In other news, I got a letter from the school I attempted my practicum at yesterday, and holy hellfire. It's quite scathing, and some of it rightfully so, but I feel pretty slandered by it. The feelings afflicting me after reading it were akin to a Suplex combo [3] , but really, I've accepted that I screwed up. Granted, I didn't need to be reminded of it in such a scathing manner, but she (my mentor) is entitled to her rage. Afterall, I didn't even send a thankyou note. Seriously, it is still bothering me, and I feel like a monster. However, it has also solidified my resolve to go back and kick some supreme ass in the next one. For the present, my only concern is to settle the matter of whether this letter is previewed by my next mentor or kept on record, because by all legal allowances, it shouldn't be allowed to do so. My withdrawal was a debacle, I admit, but I withdrew before the deadline nonetheless.

Interestingly though, the letter mentions some things I did that I was not even aware of doing, and to me, these incidences seemed a little blown out of proportion. That said, there is no denying that I was underprepared for what was required of me professionally at a time where I had the conception that my practicum was more about learning about schools than actually doing. This sounds idiotic because it was "practical experience", but at the same time, the whole concept of me "learning how to be a teacher via experiencing the environment for the first time EVER" seemed to have gotten massively lost or translated into, "be amazing on your first try, and don't make any mistakes. Don't say anything wrong either, or else your mentor teacher will quote them poorly in a wrathful letter. Especially if her mom dies, or you drop the ball on a thankyou letter."

As you can tell, I'm trying desperately not to dislike her (even if I'm still being a jerk), because I respect her a lot and she taught me a lot. I do feel stabbed though--In the back by the mime-knife of professional relationships gone sour.

[1] Uuuh...no offense.By the way, this is a pic from "Chestnut's Ice Lolly", part of the Ottawa animation Fest show that Joel, Will and I went to. He's stuck in a box advertising chestnuts that has a padlock on it.

[2]This is where y'all clap and shed a tear and bless me for being "so darn courageous!"

[3] A frightening wrestling move that John taught me.
 
Thursday, January 19, 2006
  I hope this explains things
I originally thought to start this post with a joke about periods, but given my readership, I decided against it. Lucky you!

I had a good day today. It was somewhat productive. There's this thing about my art history 256 course that is irritating me though, in that my prof just has this penchant to not make sense whatsoever. And it's not that I'm not understanding her because of my lack of knowlege, but rather like she gets so caught up in her own jargon that it messes her up and she does these verbiose little circles, like a dog chasing its tail. And it's funny the duality she has in speaking because when something doesn't go as planned, she's just all "normal joe-shmoe" with her language and the colloquialisms come out, but when she's lecturing...she even has a different tone of voice. I understand the lines of professionalism and professional appearances, but it wouldn't kill her to loosen up, not in that setting. And there's this whole unnecessary "I'm smarter than you, so...nyah nyah nyah" thing that has become evident.

In a way, there is less pressure on a prof to be professional-appearing in a university setting, as opposed to being in a public elementry/middle/high school. I say, take advantage of it. By now, we've learned that everyone makes mistakes, and that doesn't mean we're going to automatically disrespect her for doing so, or for injecting a little much-needed humor into talking about Rothko canvases. Like, holy crap.

On a humorous note...we're still seeing lots more pictures of people than art. We spent five minutes listening to her talk about how much she enjoyed the composition of a picture of Ad Reinhardt and his family. And then, we had to blitz right on through every other art slide as a result.

I just realized I have a "collective thought" due tomorrow. I'm stalling. I've actually been stalling all day in a way, because I knew there was something I was supposed to be doing, and wasn't, even though I didn't know what it was. And I still endeavoured to do everything but, even though I didn't know what I was supposed to do, until now. I went swimming (12 laps! Who's a marathon champion! I am!) and baked myself and my mp3 player in the sauna for a bit, only returning to a cold bath. Certain times of the day, we get lukewarm water, at best, through our tub faucet. It's annoying.

 
  dead spider
 
Tuesday, January 17, 2006
  Sir Breathy the toilet, is broken.
Ok, I'll come clean. I think I may have provided the catalyst for our clogged toilet. With paper towel. And I'm sorry! I'm really sorry!

But enough amnesty... I had a bizarre moment yesterday in my art history 256 class where I realized something sort of contradictory had occurred in my head and caused a short circuit.

I have no written proof, but it is rumoured on the nerd-vine that Jackson Pollock produced some fractals in his time. Now, given that Pollock was one of the biggest forerunners of the Abstract expressionism movement, it was striking me as odd.

But first, some review: Abstract expressionism, is (and this is a really shitty general summary because it's more than this) a basic abandonment of figurative qualities in art, and a signifier (*cough* this is somewhat heresay) of the slow death art is undergoing. When I say figurative qualities, I mean that abstract expressionism is a rejection of naturalism, which uses figures from nature which would refer to fractal also. Not only that, but you could almost argue that a fractal is like 'square one' of the building blocks in the natural world.

I've fully accepted though too, that I could just be making an immense ass out of myself with all this, because if you asked me about the math behind a fractal at this point, I'd still be at a loss for words somewhat.

Finally however, there is the question of how Abstract Expressionism is interpreted by the viewer. There are six possible "voices" one can take upon themselves when considering these works.

storytelling: Try and think of the story this painting is offering us (the story that you think the painting holds)

searching for figuration: This is basically what it depicts, except it is still pretty subjective, as what I might consider to be a figure (that is, from the natural realm) may not appear as a figure to someone else. In the case of Pollock, you have the license to invent your own "Magic-Eye."

feeling the spiritual: Let the painting stick it's fingers into the pants of your soul, and then tell people how that made you feel. Subjective. Actually seriously, Kandinsky used to propose that the point of abstract expressionism to the reader was to help them overcome a particular habit of mind.

responding to effects: Overcoming the habits of your mind in regards to storytelling, searching for figuration, and feeling the spiritual in a work of art, and actually looking at formal characteristics and effects of the painting (eg: how painterly is the work?). This is actually the primary mode of looking at Abstract Expressionism.

uncovering meanings: This supposes that the paintings hold meaning to begin with, and endorses the idea that there is a process of social interpretation going on (social/political events) in the time of the artist's conception and production of the work.

playing with texts: This...as far as I can understand it, has something to do with interpreting a piece of art in relation to a canon. Seems strange, and not very straightforward.

All in all....I guess I'm wondering which mode of interpretation that whoever decided Pollocok was painting fractals, was using. Because they are incredibly subjective for the most part. Or, if they were even using one of these modes of discourse.
 
  Lets cut shit up

One last imperative plea....

Does anyone ANYONE out there have a pair of skates? Because I want to go skating on the City Hall ice, and I am bereft of anyone desiring to go with me. I'll go by myself, I'm sure, but it'd be cool if I had someone to go with. My aunt refuses to go there with me, she only wants to go to Victoria park (their ice is inferior to the glossy sheen of the smooth ice in the City Hall rink) and see speed skaters (men) in their speedos. And frankly, my life is already traumatizing enough prior to that. Not all speed skaters are lean mean ice slicin' machines, you know? Think rosy plump baboon butts.[1]

[1] Yeah...butts to that.
 
  I surrender my ill will to your roses and other sparkly stupid shit.

Ok....so I was a bit of a negative nancy yesterday. I apologise. It is amazing how much my mood is dependant on sleep, or the lackthereof--or rather, if I get harried, I'm more likely to be grouchy.

I skulked through the YMCA today looking for allegedly free fitness programs. It turns out I can go do Sargeant Ab's program for nine bucks a session, but I see no free buns of steel coming out of that. Plus, the next registration [1] isn't until March. I did find a place to unload all these bags of things I don't need or want any longer though, which is nice. I'm on this "become minimal somehow, even if it takes a miracle" kick. So I keep turfing stuff. It would probably be more effective though, if I had someone else come over here and throw it out for me, because I'm too....girlishly attached to things. It's my biggest weakness to memorialize some story or minor event with a piece of junk, and I need to curb that. And my scrap paper collection. And...holy shit... how much longer do I keep these NG's until they're worth a fortune? Want a mission? Get me the best price possible on a collection of NG's dating from 1958-2004. The idea is that I want to become more mobile. Because if I do this, I might actually get the hell out of here one day if I'm lucky. I'm worried about getting stuck in Edmonton.

I like the city, but at the same time, it grates on me sometimes. However, this said, for the stage of my life that I'm at right now (the logistics of me attending school aside), the city is the best place to be. Giving me a good kick in the growing process, one mind-blowing experience after another. Turning my "palpable innocence" into a dark olive green color before I'm unleashed on the world.

Whoa. I'm blowing my own mind.

I haven't actually had a great amount of things to blog about lately. The whole act, is really starting to get old. Geez, it only took four years.

[1] This is a bamboo viper (Trimeresurus Albolabris). They're lovely.
 
Sunday, January 15, 2006
  I hope you are have a cruddy time.

You know...I'm starting to wonder if I just wonder too much, and do too little. It dawned on me today that I've pretty much almost lost the ability to stand up and defend myself, and I don't know how that happened, or whether this is a consistent thing or whether I'm just always too tired. This has been frustrating me a little bit lately- the fear of being a coward, even though by all means, I probably am a coward anyways.

Writing plans....I am going to be writing lots of writing plans soon. I'm excited to get started. The idea of a routine/self imposed alone time to do it, is still really appealing.

It's been a busy weekend. And way too short.

The whole pool thing was sort of a bomb, which I feel badly about. I had not predicted that levels of suck would be that high, and that the temperature was in fact, that low. I thought it was just me I guess, who thought it was cold in there. Throw in an age gap occurring in the group of 15-21 years, and no sleep on behalf of the loverly hostess, and voila-- it stank horrifically.

I think the thing that bothered me the most, is that I don't like being responsible for kids that are family members. There is no escaping the bawdy-wheel-o-gossip-and-condemnation, especially, in the last ten minutes of your "visit" when a ten year old runs off down the stairs because he's terrified of technology, and has a full-on scream-o panic attack in the parkade. You don't bring the kid to his parents who are looking at you like you've just shot heroin, dropped a speedball, and then lectured on evolution with them, but the security guard does, right when you say, "you know...I wonder if he got lost?"

So maybe I don't like being responsible for other people's kids, period. This doesn't mean I don't like kids, but I DO like hanging around kids that are ultimately being fed, clothed, and roofed, by other people, so I can just sit back and appreciate their personalities and how much fun they are. And it has nothing to do with me not wanting kids in the future or anything, it has to do with, "your kids are so fucked up, and here I am, pretending like they're not fucked up, and accomodating the mistakes you have made with them, that reflect themselves in the behavior of your children, that I cannot change or ease, because I don't have enough time."

I'm pretty sure that it's thoughts like those that make me a bad person. And slightly neurotic/and/or retarded. I don't know. By the age of nine, I had a lot of independence, so I guess the bottom line is that I'm genuinely dumbstruck when I see kids that are not like that. See? Terrible.

They say now, that if you let your kids leave the yard and get scrapes on their knees or dirt in their fingernails, that they'll probably get tetanus, or ground worms...or worse...rabies.[1]

I feel devoid of things to say. I had a good idea for an opinion article though, shockingly. However, it is viva l'election right now, so it would not even be worth pursuing.

[1] Sarcasm-- endo!
 
Thursday, January 12, 2006
  makeshift as we are

So....how's it going? Seriously?

Points of interest:

*I have WAY too much time on my hands this semester. Call me for coffee as often as you want.

*I'm cracking down on the writing. I'm going to try and take up some of aforementioned buttloads of time by scheduling in writing hours here. Alone. At my desk.

*I've decided that in some of my classes I'm afflicted with what's called, "I'm-so-smart-I'm-dumb-and-hella-dissappointed." Not only that, but I don't get to write a fucking term paper for the whole semester. I'm choked.

*Adam's "clan" is inescapable. In my house. In my hometown. In my fucking Art History 256 class. LOL. It's more funny than anything I'm truly sore at.

*John isn't coming up for reading week, but later. Le pathetic sigh...

*The pool is cold, and ready for my warm touch to ...put my key in the door! I have a key! It also turns out that in the summer/spring months, there is a balcony they unlock up there also. The potential for vertigo barbeques is dizzying. Ho ho ho.

*Did I mention that I'm only taking three classes? Holy shit! I've never had it this easy in my life.

The end.
 
Friday, January 06, 2006
  baby eat that chicken slow...
Nothing says bliss like having a twelve pound cat purring in your arms while you stand half a foot away from a TV and watch four hours of Gordon Downie getting off on stage, behind the scenes, making artistic farting noises, and other revealing things. I need to own "Hipeponymous". It doesn't seem just or fair or right in any way shape or form, no matter how I write it, think it, that my dad owns this and I do not.

I am Jack's burning envy and jealous green monster.

I am not a fan compelled to keep Mr. Downie's sweat in a vial around her neck, but rather one who would be quietly terrified to meet him in person, who would think of the perfect thing to say to him only after he'd left the room.

Holy fuck.

Everyone and their cat and goldfish needs to own this. Probably everyone does, except me.

This has been a rare superficial moment served up McDonald's style in a way that will surely kill you, but tastes like your momma's hot chocolate, by Emerson Emergency.
 
Wednesday, January 04, 2006
  Enjoy.
Bring it in
Bring in that fucking new year
Bring my smile back
Staunch this year of perpetual flooding.
Bring back my laughter
Banish my quiet inability
Your lame attempts
To laugh.

Bring it in,
Bring in that fucking new year
Because I’m sure as hell
Tired of the old one
This year
Was a write off
Banish those thoughts
Of dying loved ones
Dead grandparents
I know this year was your year
But next year
Next year won’t be
Next year won’t be spent healing wounds
Not like this year with your cutting departure

Bring it in,
Bring in that fucking new year
Come on, bring it like you mean it
Let’s start it off sober
And try and keep it that way
Let’s start it clean off drugs
You and me both baby
And try and keep it that way
Bring in that new year
So I can be a new person
Rather,
Old stanky,
Getting in touch with myself again
Something so long past it seems
That it will once more be new
So shocking,
Back to the fresh air I know
I can be.

Bring it in,
Bring in that fucking long over due
Do-over,
Re-do
Un-do
I need a new spring
To rinse me of my failures
Of my shortcomings
For this one has been a 365 day fight
To keep treading water
To keep from sinking
To avoid shitty metaphors for failure
Loud and clear man,
I've done a shitty job this year.
My days amount to 322
For all the corners I've cut
Things I've fowled
My events of misgivings and mediocrity
Feelings I've hurt
General foul-mouthed attitudes
This time around.

Bring it in,
Bring in that fucking new year
Let our friendships be as strong
As they were last year
But please let us
Have more fun this time around
Not behaving like caged lions
Taking tempermental swats at each other’s behinds
Drawing blood and tears.
Let's suppress giggling hysterical laughter
Not anger
Brooding only at the passage of time
Without one another to draw
Clear thoughts and conversation from.

Bring in that goddamn New Year
That fucking New Year
It’s about time already
For you and I to touch hands
And I know the fresh year bears those tidings
Where our toes will touch under sheets
And your voice will rumble against my neck
Your eyes will no longer be blue pixels
But shining close to mine
No longer thoughts of
“What a photogenic smile”
At last.

Bring in that new year
That fucking late new year
Should have started months ago
When all of this started sliding
Down the other side of the hill
The peak of that slope occurring in April.
It’s been a little overdue I think
This new year,

So bring that fucking fresh start in already,
Ready for guaranteed corruption
Perhaps not as stink-filled as the last
Afterall I like to think
I learn from my mistakes.
But for now,
I’m tired of dwelling.
 
  a year of heavy thought


A year in review is something I’ve always been sort of leery of writing, but I figure that this year of years is only better worked through, if expounded upon, and then left in the past, with only the things I have learned from it to follow me to twenty-o-six.

However, there have been a lot of things that have occurred this year that have admittedly been more grievous than good, but for the sake of the reader and myself, I have not forgotten that there have been many fortunate things that have happened to me also.

Probably the most difficult aspect for me occurred in April when my grandmother passed away. It was something our family had foreseen in the December preceding, but it is always hard to say goodbye to those we love, and even harder to watch them go in the agony that cancer is. And of course, there is always the aftermath of these deaths that take away a matriarch that proves to be difficult.
I learned that a need for material wealth in some runs far deeper than initially thought, and that events like these often have the effect of making one impervious to material things (though, there is also the interesting instance of clinging to things desperately out of nostalgia, which is a tough one to fathom sometimes).
Amongst other things, my extended family throughout all this, has reached an interesting and somewhat strained (but long overdue) understanding of each other. And, oddly enough, out of this understanding, we have somehow become acclimatized to the oddities that make our family what it is, as opposed to our old and comfortable facetious pretensions. It’s kind of nice I think, but still fraught with peril somehow—but even that lessens day by day.

This year for me, has also been a year of intense self-reflection, and admittedly, a fair amount of introvertedness that I am not necessarily used to. I feel like I have been around all my friends and family more than usual this year, and yet, I haven’t really been there in a lot of ways, because I’ve been too wrapped up in myself and trying to work through things I must remedy about myself, like how I think about things, events, and other people. In my mind, so much has happened in my life, and I have spent this year playing catch-up with myself.

In saying this, 2005 has been all about the private vacations. I visited my brother in BC in May, shortly after my finals and hid out there for a week or so and enjoyed the company of my brother and his fiancée. Later in September, I returned for their wedding which was a wonderfully small affair consisting of several barbeques and a really cool quad.

Another wedding occurred this summer also. An old friend of mine got married in August, and asked me to be her maid of honor (acronym MOH- Mistress of Horrorshow!). Remind me never to do that again. I learned this summer, that the most serious mistakes that we make in our lives that cause us to be unhappy later in life, are the ones that we make at this age, that we do not place enough consequence into. I think she will be happy…in another life. As it is now though, the only thing that will make her happy is to become a statistic of discontentment.

I learned that being a maid of honor is something only to be done once in a lifetime. Especially if you are single. It is a rollercoaster of torment best remedied only by a quick mickey of spiced rum on the steps of a church. Cry, shmooze, booze, and holy shit, I will never do that again.

But now, now onto the cool things… I “joined” the Raving Poets this year, and finally found an excellent outlet for poetry that would have otherwise collected dust or spammers. It is hard to put my finger on what I like the most about it, but I do enjoy an enthralled audience, admittedly. If I step down, and I have made at least one person laugh, I feel awesome. I only regret that there weren’t more of them, because I’m finding that this year has been a most [1] prolific one for poetry. Some of it good, and some of it undeniably crap.

Interestingly enough, this has also been a very lean year for me artistically. I have not done very amazing things in art land, and it kind of bums me out, but at the same time, I am relieved I didn’t have to force too much of what I did do. And the stuff that I did do this year, I’m incredibly impressed with. Except for one painting for a project, lol—it’s an abomination.

On the same note of creative endeavors, I also got to help film a movie this year, which was an incredible amount of fun. I really enjoyed it a lot, and I’m hoping to do more in the future with Will or Joel, or maybe do some on my own. I’ve also been attempting more photography this year, although my financial constraints and some dud rolls have not been overly conducive to being consistent in my efforts.
This year, I also got kicked into independence of sorts, when I moved into my first place, with fellow roommate and close friend Adam.[2] It’s actually been a lot of fun to live with him, despite our occasional difference. It’s been neat (and no doubt slightly annoying to him) to have such a good friend just down the hall, bad morning person vs. bad morning person and all…

My building has proven to be a great place to live, though I realize the opinions differ in that regard. I really enjoy it, though living quarters are tight, as I’ve gotten to know quite a lot of the residents somewhat well, after taking a job in the convenience store downstairs. I’m also going to be getting a pool key this week, which is exciting, because finally our pool is commission after its long fraudulent advertisement. So, if any of y’all want to come over for a swim, you’re more than welcome.

One of the biggest highlights of my year was finding out that the world does have one other eccentric being out there in store for me. Meeting John was completely unexpected, but as it stands now, I couldn’t imagine not knowing him. I have never had the privilege of saying that talking to someone on the phone every day for at least an hour never gets boring. There is talk of a reading week visit coming up, which is awesome.

So admittedly, there is one more crappy thing that occurred in December to me in regards to school, but I think that I have survived the emotional impasse I was at regarding…well, a complete lack of confidence in my abilities (hence private vacation number three of the year at my parents house). I think that I still have quite a bit to learn, but for trying my next practicum, I have renewing confidence that I will do quite well at it, because I have a lot of learned experiences to walk into it with now, however unfavourable the circumstances that I learned them in were.

The biggest thing that I’ve realized right now, is that in the wake of the old year, I just have to start afresh with the new. Never before has this occasion actually been as important to me as it is right now. So, I’m wiping the slate clean, as responsibly as I can, and I realize that I have to buckle down and be a better person this year. Do some growing up, and whatnot. Have some fun and whatnot. Be responsible, and do things right the first time.[3]

[1] Man, I’m watching stupid “Brother’s Grimm” right now, so I feel like my diction is just a little esoteric through the whole of this work. I apologise, especially if your eyes are falling out of your head right now.

[2] I have also decided to grow up and join the real world with my use (or rather, disuse) of first names, instead of pseudonyms. If this bothers anyone, be sure to let me know.

[2] I’ve never been good at this way of doing things, but I’ll try. ; ).
 
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comics of note
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