Monday, September 29, 2003

It's been a week since I've posted. I wish I could say that I was swept away to some exotic place for a week of rest and relaxation but it didn't happen that way. Work's been so busy that I've not been taking lunch and usually, I post here from work, at lunch.

Next week though, things should be back to normal. Until then, here's a goofy quiz to keep you occupied:

My inner child is sixteen years old today

My inner child is sixteen years old!

Life's not fair! It's never been fair, but while
adults might just accept that, I know
something's gotta change. And it's gonna
change, just as soon as I become an adult and
get some power of my own.

How Old is Your Inner Child?
brought to you by Quizilla

Monday, September 22, 2003

The weekend was a blur, a good blur, but a blur nonetheless.

I bit the bullet on the weekend and had my hair chopped off. 14 inches of it. I now have 5 10 inch braids in my possession which I will be donating to "Locks of Love" in the next few days. I can honestly say that I feel light-headed. I can not get over how much all that extra hair was dragging me down. This is the first time that I've had a big chunk of hair cut in 5 or 6 years. I also coloured it yesterday, Indian Poppy red. I really like it, it's fun. It feels a little odd to have bouncy hair that is not pulled back in a pony-tail or braid!

We spent yesterday doing chores. I worked on the inside and Mark worked on the shed. It was a huge mess. Since we moved in 2000, we just kept piling and piling stuff in there with no real sense of organization. He pulled out all the crap that we're getting rid of, reorganized the stuff we're keeping, installed shelving, the works!! It looks fabulous. I cleaned the house from top to bottom, dug out my fall clothes, packed up my summer stuff, put a big bag together for goodwill and did a tonne of laundry. It was a very productive day and I feel great about it. It's nice to know that over the next couple of weeks, when work hits frenzy mode, at least the house will be organized!

Friday, September 19, 2003

A musical edition of the Friday Five:

1. Who is your favorite singer/musician? Why?

Yikes, that's a really tough question for me as it varies from time to time. I would have to say that overall, my favourite female, singer / songwriter is Kirsty MacColl. I also have a favourite male singer / songwriters, favourite Canadian Band, American Band, UK Band, etc. but for the sake of this Friday Five, I'll say it's Kirsty.

I absolutely love Kirsty's music. She wrote beautifully constructed pop songs with intelligent lyrics. She was a strong, independent woman and her songs reflect that. She was a brutally honest writer and I believe that the honesty and passion in her music is what inspires her extremely loyal fans. It breaks my heart that she's dead. As I type this, I am fighting back tears thinking about it. She was killed in December 2000 while diving with her sons in Mexico. A motor boat was speeding through a "no boat" zone and hit her. Her mother, Jean, has launched a campaign to bring those responsible for Kirsty's death, to justice. To learn more about the campaign, please visit Justice For Kirsty.

2. What one singer/musician can you not stand? Why?

Oh there are so many to pick. One that pops immediately into my head is Shania Twain. I've never liked her, I'm ashamed of the fact that she is from Canada and I cannot, for the life of me, figure out what it is that people like about her. Her music is inane. She dresses like a skank (not to mention that nothing she wears would be considered age-appropriate for a woman who is almost 40). She likes to play up the fact that she grew up poor in Timmins yet doesn't have a residence in Canada anymore. To me, she represents everything that is wrong with popular country music. The fact that you can her her pop shlock shit on Country radio and you can't hear Neko Case's, makes me want to vomit.

3. If your favorite singer wasn't in the music business, do you think you would still like him/her as a person?

Absolutely. The fact that singer / songwriters can remain creative and still be a part of something as soul-sucking as the music industry amazes me. I would have loved to have had the opportunity to meet Kirsty MacColl. As I worked in community radio for almost 10 years and helped to promote shows locally, I've met many musicians over the years and almost all of them were very lovely people. Genuinely sweet and appreciative of the support that they receive from Campus Radio and from the folks who go to their shows and buy their CD's & 7"''s.

4. Have you been to any concerts? If yes, who put on the best show?

I've been to hundreds of concerts in my lifetime. Hands down, the best show I ever saw was Tom Waits at the Hummingbird Centre in Toronto. It was during his summer 1999 tour and he had the entire audience mesmerized and on the edge of our seats for over 2 hours. Tom rules!

5. What are your thoughts on downloading free music online vs. purchasing albums? Do you feel the RIAA is right in its pursuit to stop people from downloading free music?

I think that the RIAA has a lot of nerve trying to impose their regulations on other countries. I also think that they are seriously fooling themselves if they think that it's going to stop anytime soon. I download music and, if I like something, I'll buy the album. If I don't like it, I delete it and look for something new. I've found out about more new music this way. I think it's a great way to exchange new music and get "smaller" artists exposure that they ordinarily wouldn't have.

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

On this Journey of a lifetime...Decisions made....

And finally, they made a decision, Ryan's our Canadian Idol!!

Congrats Ryan!!

I took this picture a couple of weeks ago. For those of you unfamiliar with Kingston culture, Shakers is a strip club. Even they supported Ryan. I can not remember a time when our whole community came together on the same side of something. Ryan's being in this Canadian Idol thing has really brought folks together.

I still can't believe that I was addicted to a singing contest program all summer but, there you go. I must say that it was in large part because Ryan's from home "subdivision" of Amherstview. Also, I liked him from the beginning and thought he was, overall, the strongest contender. It's nice to see a boy from a small town do so well. Way to go Ryan!!

I have to be honest about something though. My absolute favourite part of the whole thing was the "bad" singers show, the best of the worst it was called. I love that "Journey" song that the girl from Cape Breton wrote and every night, when I get home from work, stressed out and grumpy, I throw the tape in and watch those bad singers singing her bad song. It gives me hope and it makes me laugh... "Canada...can you sees your Canadian Idol."

Sunday, September 14, 2003

Go Yoko!

I love Yoko, she's a fabulous, strong, intelligent woman. I have so much respect for what she's done with her life and the way that she has continued the work that she and John Lennon started almost 40 years ago.

Yoko Ono to Go Naked for Peace in Paris

PARIS (Reuters) - John Lennon's widow Yoko Ono could end up stark naked on a Paris stage Monday as she performs her one-woman art show "Cut Piece," in which members of the audience are to cut off pieces of her clothing.

Ono, 70, who accompanied her Beatle husband in numerous controversial anti-war campaigns including the "Bed-In for Peace" against the Vietnam War, first performed her "Cut Piece" show in 1964 in Japan as a protest for peace.

At the end of the show, she stood naked before her audience.

"Come and cut a piece of my clothing wherever you like --- the size of less than a postcard --- and send it to the one you love," the avant-garde artist said in a statement ahead of the performance at Paris' Ranelagh theater.

"When I first performed this work, in 1964, I did it with some anger and turbulence in my heart. This time, I do it with love for you, for me and for the world," she added.

Ono has continued to stage unusual peace campaigns after her husband was shot dead by a deranged fan in December 1980.

Last year, she rented a giant billboard space amid the flashing neon signs of Piccadilly Circus in central London. "Imagine all the people living life in peace," the black-and- white poster read, alluding to Lennon's hit song, "Imagine."

Ahead of the war in Iraq, Ono took out full-page advertisements in major newspapers, conveying the message: "Imagine Peace...Spring 2003."

Peace activists around the world have come to adopt the title track from Lennon's 1971 best-selling solo album as their unofficial anthem.

Saturday, September 13, 2003

All week, I could barely drag my butt out of bed. Today, Saturday, I could actually sleep in a bit, if I really wanted to. Of course, I was wide awake at 5:30 a.m. Typical.

I worked late again last night, although it wasn't as frantic as Thursday. I have a bunch of stuff I need to do around the house this weekend so I'm not sure if I'll go into the office for a couple of hours this morning or not. I'm feeling like I need to take a break from what I'm working on or I'll start making mistakes. It's mostly financial stuff that I'm working on so it could happen, you know what I mean?

On an up note, the other day, we got a copy of The Family Guy: Volume 2 on DVD. Neither of us had seen any of these episodes (at least none on disc 2 so far) and we're absolutely loving it. The writing got particularly sick and twisted in season 3 and it's absolutely hilarious. The more we watch this (and the Volume 1 set), more I laugh. It's been quite nice, the past few evenings, to pop a disc in and watch an episode or two before bed. I highly recommend it!

Friday, September 12, 2003

Oh my goodness, I'm just unbelieveably saddened to read this:

Country Music Legend Johnny Cash Dies at 71

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Country music icon Johnny Cash died on Friday morning due to complications from diabetes, his manager said.

Cash, 71, died at Baptist Hospital in Nashville, Tennessee, according to a statement from manager Lou Robin.

"Johnny died due to complications from diabetes, which resulted in respiratory failure," Robin said.

Known as country music's "Man in Black," Cash was credited with being the inspiration for a generation of Nashville upstarts with songs like "Ring of Fire" and "I Walk the Line."

Most recently, Cash was given the award for Best Cinematography in a Video at last month's MTV Video Music Awards for his video "Hurt."

Cash had not been able to attend the MTV awards because he was in the hospital in Nashville with a stomach ailment. His wife, country star June Carter Cash, died in May after heart surgery.

The Cash family will announce funeral arrangements, the statement from his manager said.

Thursday, September 11, 2003

So, all work and no play makes Peggy...Something? Something? Oh yeah, brain-dead!

Today was long and exhausting. I worked until 6:30 p.m. (I'm normally done at 4:30 p.m.) and still can't see a light at the end of the tunnel. At this point, if I did see a light, I'd be looking for a train to be attached. The nice thing about this is that four weeks from now, it'll be all over for another year...Hopefully. We're looking down the nose of some pretty serious organizational changes at work. I'm not 100% how that will effect me and, at the moment, neither does anyone else.

I've decided to try not to worry about it too much. Apparently, we'll be informed as details become available. It's looking like that won't happen until at least Christmas. Change is good, I like change. That's one of the reasons I enjoy working where I do. Due to the nature of what we do, it's a very dynamic environment. Right now though, I'd love to have more details about this particular change. Unfortunately, none are available. Literally, no one knows how this whole restructuring thing is going to play out.

If nothing else, it should be an interesting ride over the next few months. Hopefully, I'll be able to avoid motion sickness!

Which HP Kid Are You?

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

So. Yay! Ryan is in the top two.

After last night's show, I had to reassure a friend of mine that just because Billy got voted out (yay!), Ryan wasn't at risk. She was worried that, like Jenny and Toya before, the most talented person could be eliminated. At this point I don't think this is going to happen.

I was SO happy to hear Billy's name, I actually screamed out "YES" really really loudly. Everything else aside, I don't like Billy, never did. I felt that he was way out of element being in the top 30 and still cannot believe that he got as far as did. He truly is a one-trick pony. Throughout the competition he's been mediocre at best, in my opinion anyway. I also must say that watching his brother freaking out in the front row every week has been annoying.

Having said that, I feel that the judges set Billy up to fall. On Monday night, he had to sing a judge's choice song and one of his own favourites. The judge's had him sing "Everytime you go away" (the Paul Young hit from the 80's) and he massacred it. His choice was "Plush" by Stone Temple Pilots. I agree, whole heartedly with a comment that one of the judges made about a cover band called "stone temple pylons." Billy should be in a bad grunge band "tribute" act, not in a competition like this. By allowing Billy to trip himself up, the judges have placed Gary and Ryan in the final showdown.

I've always liked Gary and think that he is a great soul singer. Overall though, he doesn't have the versatility that Ryan has, not to mention the support. This town is going nuts over Mr Malcolm. I have it on good authority that CTV is trying to secure a space for a "pep rally" on Monday night. Apparently, they want to find a space that can hold up to 5000 people. They'll broadcast the two-hour show down special to the crowd and, I'm sure, cut to the mob in Kingston during the show.

I doubt very much that we'll bother going to something like that. It's very cool though, that a kid from Amherstview can do as well as Ryan's done. He is a really talented fellow and this is an amazing opportunity for him, and his family. The fact that Mark and I are actually watching him and voting for him every week (and we totally hate stuff like this) is proof of how gifted he is. I really hope that he wins next week, he truly deserves it!

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

Okay, so today has been completely mad, all day!

At the moment, I'm at home. Why am I at home during my busiest time of the year you ask? (oh, yeah, it's my busy time right now at work -- it will be for the next four weeks!) Well, today started off weird. We both slept in, we were completely exhausted and this was full-blown, crazy late sleep in.

So I get up, late. I get my lunch made, I scarf down some breakfast. Mark heads over to Fern's to pick up the cab. He's starting later than usual but that's okay, he'll grab the car, come home and have breakfast and coffee, no big deal. I jump in the shower and, whilst showering, I hear someone banging on the door (which is located right below the shower) and the phone ringing. I'm fairly certain that this is an elusive insurance inspector we've been playing telephone tag with so I carry on with my shower. I hear more hammering on the door and start to realize that it's not the inspector. It's Mark. I look out the window and see that he's locked out. Dripping wet, I run down the stairs and let him in. The door was jammed. I figured it was because some of those cotton shopping bags had been hanging on the door knob and jammed the knob. I let him in, we carry on getting ready for work. Mark tests said faulty door knob, all seems fine and we head out.

On the way to the car, I spill part of my coffee on my hand. As I'm wearing a white top, I decide to go back in the house to clean it up. The door knob is pooched. We cannot get in. Now, you might ask, "Peg, why not enter by a different door." That's a very good question. The answer is simple: we can only enter and leave by this door -- at the side of our house. The front door, we discovered, can be locked and unlocked from inside but we don't have a key for the deadbolt. Having the whole house re-locked and re-keyed has been on our to-do list for a while but we've never gotten around to it. Until today that is. It's being dealt with as I type. The lovely locksmith, Barry I think his name is, is installing new door knobs and dead bolts on both of our doors and we'll actually be able to use keys on them. Novel idea huh?

On a sad note, I heard that Warren Zevon passed away. I know that he was sick for a while with cancer so this wasn't a total shock. Somewhere around here, I have a Warren button that says, "my shit's fucked up." I wanted to wear it today but couldn't find it. He was a very talented fellow and will be missed.

Monday, September 08, 2003

So it was my blog's birthday yesterday and I didn't post. I suck!

Don't blame me though, blame blogger, it was intermittent at best all weekend. I can't believe that it's been a year since I started this. One of my goals, when I started, was to write more and hopefully that would lead me to read more again. My writing isn't always (hardly ever actually) super interesting or witty but it's always honest. I've also been reading more over the past few months than I have in a long time. I'm falling back in love with books again. This is particularly good because we have an entire room of books at home, a good 25% of which I've not looked at yet.

It feels good to have accomplished these goals. The past 12 months have been full of really positive changes for me and I have this little blog to thank for many of them. Happy birthday friend!

Saturday, September 06, 2003

I woke up this morning, full of good intentions about getting out early and doing my errands. It didn't last though and I've still not gone out to do errands. Instead, I've been poking around the house, watching bits and pieces of the While You Were Out marathon. I love watching the back yard / patio make over shows. I'd love to have someone come in and redo our patio area. It's pretty boring. We plan to revamp it, some year, but there are many other things that we want to do to the inside of the house before we tackle it.

This afternoon, I think I will go do those errands. The sun's shining and it's amazingly beautiful outside. September is just so much more pleasant than August was!

Friday, September 05, 2003

So, here's my tip of the day:

"do not attempt to talk to hard-of-hearing senior citizens whilst a band is sound-checking outside your office"

'nuff said!
So, The Matthew Good Band's bus is parked outside my window right now. Yay! How I love to see transport trucks and tour buses taking up already precious parking spots on a Friday. What a pain in the bum. I know that Frosh Week comes but once a year but couldn't they a) have a frosh week concert that actually isn't boring and b) have it somewhere that doesn't require eating up huge numbers of parking spaces.

Boggles the mind, really. Our office has been kind of stinky today too. There are doing construction a couple of buildings over and this tar smoke has been billowing around for the past couple of days. I had to close the window a little while ago because it was so gross.

Oh well, c'est la vie, right?

This week's Friday Five:

1. What housekeeping chore(s) do you hate doing the most?

I really don't like cleaning the bathroom, particularly the bath tub. We have very hard water where we live and it makes cleaning the bath tub a huge, gross job.

2. Are there any that you like or don't mind doing?

I wouldn't say that I like it but I don't mind doing laundry. I used to hate it when I had to go to the laudromat. Now that we have our own washer and dryer I really don't mind it at all because I can do other things at the same time.

3. Do you have a routine throughout the week or just clean as it's needed?

We wash dishes after every meal and try to keep things tidy through the week. I do laundry every weekend (through the week I'll do a load if I have to) and I'll also do the bathroom and the vacuuming on the weekend too but not at a set time or on a set day.

4. Do you have any odd cleaning/housekeeping quirks or rules?

I like to be home alone when I'm cleaning. I also try to do in the morning and I don't let myself have a shower until whatever I'm cleaning is done. This makes me work a lot faster, trust me!

5. What was the last thing you cleaned?

I did some dishes and cleaned up the kitchen counter this morning just before I left for work....Oh, unless cleaning my coffee mug at work counts. If it does, then that's the last thing I cleaned!

Thursday, September 04, 2003

I'm surrounded by idiots. The biggest part of my job is helping to organize a large-scale, annual event, which is attended by thousands of people. Obviously, we work on it all year. We're exactly one month away from this year's "do" and you wouldn't believe the requests that we are getting. Some people just have no clue about how big events are planned. This happens every year and you would think that we would get used to getting last minute, absolutely over-the-top requests for help so I don't know why it bugs us so much, it just does.

It's another wonderful day in the neighbourhood here. I could barely hear my phone ringing earlier due to all the of the frosh week commotion that was happening on the lawn outside my office. The kids are having fun though, so that's the most important thing, I know. They have just been a lot louder this year than in the past. I'm guessing it's due to increased numbers of first year students (the double cohort thing). Things will quiet down next week when classes start. It's always an adjustment for folks on campus when the students return. You just about get used to everyone being gone and they're back.

Mark's feeling much better today. I'm so glad because I was really worried about him yesterday. He had a nasty nasty bug that knocked him flat on his ass. Chicken soup can do wonders for a body though. Soup and sleep and drugs actually!

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

Yikes, Wednesday again.

I'm not working this afternoon. I had some lieu time coming and Mark is home, really sick with the flu so I cut my day short and headed home. I'm glad I did. We were supposed to take his dad for groceries tonight but instead, I went out and got his stuff and ours and was able to get some soup into the patient. He's really feeling like hammered shit. Fortunately, he's sleeping now. Sleep is always the best medicine for something like this. Oh, that and Advil for Cold & Sinus.

Frosh week is under way in full swing. We could hear the chanting gael groups outside our window this morning. Even though it's cloudy and dark and threatening to rain, those kids always have so much spirit. Of course by Friday they will all be as sick as dogs from not sleeping and shouting in the rain all week, but they will have bonded and learned the words to the "Oil Thigh" and will know how to find all of their classes come Monday.

The other night, after work, Mark and I took a drive around town. I took pictures of all the "go Ryan go" type signs we could find and I'll be posting them up here soon. I'm so glad that he's made it into the top 3. We tried and tried on Monday night to vote but couldn't get through. At one point, our phone was completely dead because of the number of people here in Kingston attempting to call in. I'm so glad that we didn't need to call 911 or something during that first 30 minutes after the show was over.

I was SO happy to see Audrey go last night, you have no idea. I swear, I will never get addicted to a "reality" show again, this is just ridiculous!!