Saturday, March 31

Who spends over 5 hours in the mall?!?!

Two things my mother says one should never cheap on:
1) Shoes (you only get one pair of feet and they take you everywhere)
2) moisturizer (treat yo face nice)

I have been mulling (in my brain) quite a bit about the humanity of Christ and the implications of that. It is itching to be posted however, I will wait until I am a bit more coherent since it could come out just plain wrong or incomprehensible otherwise. I'll give a hint: it is mildly related to John 11, the death of Lazarus.

Thursday, March 29

call me Princess Consuela Banana-Hammock

Gmail is a wonderful SPAM catcher with few unwanted emails getting into my inbox. Sometimes, for entertainment, I go into my SPAM folder just to see what is there. These emails have gotten more creative and make me question if they are generated by a 'random word generator' in hopes that someone will be fooled by the subject matter or name. Well the chances of me being fooled by these names are slim. Does anyone know a:

hot-water bottle Cordosa?
how about his cousin (her?)
Webber Z. Austin who is offering me a gardener scholarship
then you must know the esteemed Cisneros Q. Theodora, the most famous astronomer of the 21st century
surely you know him? How about the crazy old man down the road
Mr. Watty B. Tapia. What good times we have had. He must be mad because why else would he write me an email about significant fishnets

i think that if I have children I will n ame them by opening my spam folder and choosing the 4th name I find.

Rolf Crum (british for sure), McDermott G. Lewie, Moody William (someone never lost their childhood nickname the time they threw a tantrum at their birthday party), Dottie Sue (first time off daddy's farm), and we can't forget Velanzuela R. Bel

Wednesday, March 28

things i'll miss about guelph part II

the courtyard is full again but this time everyone sits along the edges to give the dancers room to work. Work? Move. seizure? It is contemporary dance and I can't tell the difference between the 4 year olds who are hopping and flowing to the music in the intermission.

No inhibitions. One lies on her back with all of her limbs straight up and hands and feet limp. Hippie kids raised at Guelph. My children will be raised in a university town.

We have discovered the a girl who lives three doors down from us owns three identical black chihuahuas that go outside on pink leashes. My first reaction upon hearing this would be to gag at the thought of that many ankle-biters but no, they are adorable and I will have a soft spot in my heart for them. I have been needing a dog these past few weeks. normally I don't wish for an animal but the idea of a warm companion that makes you feel special all the time.

Monday, March 26

What I'll Miss about Guelph

Sun is streaming through the skylights in the UC and a funky band is jamming a sweet beat on various percussions, some electric guitars and a sitar. The beat pulses in my feet but it feels like it belongs there, or I belong here. Hippie kids sway in the sun patches not with any particular rhythm. The smell of coffee blends into the mix from the table on the other side of the courtyard where well-meaners give out free fair trade coffee and chocolate. No slave labour. I forgot all my cash in my blue jacket. Useless guy in the band (you know, the one who plays the triangle) reminds be of a cross between Encino Man and a funky bongo player in a pilates video we used to do at 54 Yewholme.
It is nice to just take this all in calmly. Maybe I shouldn't be this calm since i realized while trekking to school that as of the end of my last exam I have no definite future plans. Scratch that. i have a ticket to Bermuda. Other than that nothing is for sure. This is unprecedented in my life, I have nothing to reference, maybe that is why I don't know what to feel. Which brings us to today's word: Sigh.

Saturday, March 24

A new song

One of my favourite music artists is Tracy Chapman. While walking across the field to Emily's house for our joint birthday dinner one of songs started to repeat in my head. Then I couldn't help but hum it and eventually sing it quietly as I squished through the wet grass.

She's got her ticket
I think she gonna use it
I think she going to fly away
No one should try and stop her
Persuade her with their power
She says that her mind is made

...But she knows where her ticket takes her
She will find her place in the sun

Some of the lyrics were left out because they don't apply however, this chorus at least is my new song. I have my ticket, I plant to use it and it will take me to the Island of Bermuda! $407.65 CDN to become a traveler and to finally experience the ocean. Hopefully this will be my song many more times after that.

"Let that Be Enough" is no longer relevant

Right now I have that post-birthday mellowness. Not only am I older but the celebration is over. It does not bother me to admit that I love birthdays because it is an excuse to feel special for an entire day. I can't complain because I really did.

What the day made me think about was love languages; how each person shows their love in a different way. Sometimes those ways aren't compatible. I think my love language is quality time. Or maybe it is gifts. Whatever it is the sure fire way to get me is to do something thoughtful like spend time making something or to write a personal note in a card or give me a small gift that reminded that person of me. The way I show love is similar but not exactly the same. Acts of service best describes what I do. It gives me great joy to do something small for someone I am close to, to surprise them or to help them complete something.

Birthday Re-cap
--I received some very sweet messages on my facebook wall, many from people back home that I just don't get to see enough
--Lunch was with four lovely ladies. The time is what mattered, and the thought that my friend arranged for others to come because I was bummed that everyone would be at FOP for my birthday.
--A certain very talented person played Happy Birthday at the stairs for me on the ACORDIAN! It's pretty hard to get more special than that.
--My house and I ordered pizza (something we actually never do) and ate it on the living room floor and then just chilled until we walked to C4C
--Becky picked up some fancy tea, a travel journal and a framed grad photo of the two of us. I definitely get a little tear-eyed looking at it (or reading the back too) remembering that I really am graduating and I am so comfortable in this place and with these people.
--Sarah made me a beaufiful framed collage of pictures of our house and the Jaxx gave me books on the English language. Talk about thoughtful.
--to finish off the day Sarah and I ate popcorn while hanging out and watching Mythbusters (the one about deadly farts....all I can remember is the farts)

Wednesday, March 21

Matthew 7:21-23

This verse is unsettling to me and has been since I heard it. First it was just a matter of assurance of salvation and the fear of one day hearing those words. Being turned away from heaven with those words would be awful.

Taking it deeper though it makes me question the immediacy and guarantee of salvation. Can salvation truly be traced back to the instant that a person prays a prayer and 'asks Christ into their lives'? Even if they mean it and have faith and all that. It specifies the condition of Christ knowing us. In that direction. How could Christ know us the second we pray that prayer? Because technically Christ is God, therefore God/Christ claims to know us intimately (knowing the number of hairs on our heads) even when we aren't 'saved'. So if he knows everything about us before we pray the prayer and we aren't saved then knowing in this sense must refer to something more. This knowing would be active, choosing to share our happiness, trials and learning. Choosing time to get to know Christ. This can't have been done that quickly can it? So when does Christ 'know' us?

Tuesday, March 20

thanks for the....electronic steak?

I'll admit it: facebook is growing on me. Now that people in the soo have finally discovered it i actually use it to keep in touch with people that I rarely see or talk to otherwise.

But $1 for 'gifts' made of pixels? ok, they are good for a laugh. Haha, you sent me a picture of goat. But $1? draw them a picture on paint, email a picture that you took, email one you found on google, tell them a joke! What really gets my goat though is that some of them are sold out!! Sold out??!! There are two problems with this in my mind:
1) people paid for these things, lots of people
2) how can you sell out of an electronic cartoon of anything? Sorry, we no longer have the pixels to send that particular mug of hot chocolate but we do have a pearl necklace if you are interested.

Like the miser I am I will save my one free gift until the very perfect moment comes up to use it and never again send a gift over facebook. Stamped it.

Saturday, March 17

How to:

Be a guest at a Classy Conference:

1. Fall asleep during the first panel.
2. play with the translation equipment (spanish. english. spanish. english.)
3. Roll your eyes whenever someone asks a long question.
4. Complain about the quality of the translation (haha, did you hear the male translator correcting the female one in the background?")
5. Skip out early on the last speaker
6. While skipping out, become completely inept at returning said translation equipment requiring someone to run over and help.
7. Grab some of the free sandwiches at a break, wrap them up in napkins, stuff them in purse, enjoy for dinner in car.
8. Smell like free sandwiches while sitting in the audience.

There you have it, a guide to getting invited back to any conference, ever.

All joking aside, the conference was at York and it dealt with Exclusion and violence in Colombia. The day was broken into 4 panels with three speakers each. The focus of the talks was not the drug trade at all (gasp) but the struggle of the indigenous and afro-colombian groups in the country. I was not even aware previously that Colombia once had a thriving slave industry. A middle-aged women with distinctly indigenous south american features sat quietly in the second row. She wore a pale blue cotton dress and layers of colourful beads around her neck in the custom of her people. "Wow, this conference attracted indigenous people who have immigrated to Canada. I wonder if she can understand Spanish, or just her native language." Both apparently. and English. She sat at the panel a little hunched when we came back in after coffee. She spoke about the problems that indigenous women face when trying to protect their land and claim their rights in Colombia. Her perspective was that of former governor of a Colombian state. She looked meek but she had power and conviction.

This is an attempt to share some of the information and tragedy spoken about at the conference.

1. Both indigenous and afro-Colombian peoples finally received recognition in terms of rights to land and to identity by the government in 1991 through a constitution. It is one thing to have rights on paper, another to attempt to claim them
2. Colombia has had a great term of growth in the last decade but is one of the least economically equal countries in the west. Over 60% of people live in poverty.
3. A major problem for indigenous Colombians in the extraction of resources. The government allows foreign companies to ransack rainforests, sends military and paramilitary groups to protect the companies and does not pass any of the benefits to the people. For example: a Canadian corporation built a massive dam upstream from a thriving rain forest community. The result was more money for the government and for the people? The running river turned into stagnant water bringing malaria, malnutrition and death from a lack of protein when the fish could no longer swim downstream to the community, rising water levels forcing them to move to higher ground and destroying sustenance that grew at the waters edge. What can they do? Nothing. It is illegal to hold rallies or marches. 4 leaders who have tried to speak out have been murdered.

4. Women are raped by guerrillas to bring shame on their families. When one 11 year-old reported the assault she was first told by officials that she had brought it on herself and would do best to forget about it. Her father, instead of sympathy, berated her for shaming her family and told her that she was never to speak about it again.

This could easily become a report so I will stop. There is just so much more that I could say. Should corporations be free to go unchecked in foreign countries doing business that harms the population of that country? There needs to be a better system in place. Canada needs to be accountable.

Thursday, March 15

Hold Your Horses

Things I believed as a child:

I thought that BC was the edge of the earth.

A friend told me a 'ghost story' about a princess who was locked away by her stepmother in a tower and died there because her stepmom was jealous of her long beautiful hair. Now she wanders the earth as a ghost to get revenge and anyone who touches her hair turns into a ghost. I was about 5 or 6 (because I still had my own room) and for months after that I slept up against the wall, with the blankets over my head and a small opening near my face for fresh air. It took me another 10-15 years to stop letting people tell me scary stories or watch scary movies.

The cool rock I found in the backyard was a piece of flint and was likely used by natives at some point (ok, I actually think that I still have that rock)

All old homes have really neat old attics with crazy fun stuff like mannequins, pictures of people from the victorian era and letters from the war.

Even though I didn't really believe it I never could stand in front of my mirror and say 'bloody mary' three times.

It is amazing the way that children see the world. It would be fantastic to have the opportunity to see the world as I did as a child just one more time. Everything was so new and exciting. I'm still a very excitable person but it is different. Life has become so complicated by big important things, I don't ever want to forget the little things.

[Editor's Note: I just remembered the reason I had thought of writing this blog. The rational explanation I used to explain the cracks in the asphalt on the roads was that dinosaurs must have done that long long ago (if not dinosaurs it at least had to be all those prehistoric earthquakes i'm sure wawa was getting)]

Wednesday, March 14

Shameless Plug

Me. 22. March 23rd. Birthday. mine! Soon!

Party...? Yes. Saturday. this one. Late. 10pm? Becky too. Woot. Woot.

I've been waiting a long time to sing the switchfoot song "Let that be Enough" just for the line "It's my birthday tomorrow, no one here could know. I was born this [friday] 22 years ago"
It's a little sappy but hey, you only get to do that once.

Learned today: I have a penchant for outrageous southern accents. It's eerie. Like I have actually lived in a trailer park and ate beans and weenies while watching Roseanne. Who knows.

Monday, March 12


It hit me today while reading an example in my Linguistics textbook. The band "Ghoti Hook"...not called "go-tee" hook but FISH hook. man, that could have been embarrassing. This represents a good 10 years of confusion explained.

If this doesn't make any sense, allow me to explain. English is a language that has an alphabet that is terribly unsuited for its job. Not only that but some crazy nuts who started spelling things really did a royally poor job. One dude who was kinda peeved off by this the inconsistency in English spelling proved that one could spell Fish "ghoti" if spelling from other word are applied.

Ie. the 'f' from enough, the "i' sound from women and the 'sh' from nation. Clever, no?

here let's do my name.

the 'k' in chameleon. The 'a' from hey. the 'tie' from "tea"
you get: Cheytea, the new spelling of my name. Its easy, anyone can do it!

Sunday, March 11

Slept in until noon

Last night was my third and final College Royal Ball. I was definitely fortunate to have spent it with a big group of fantastic people. This is likely the first time I have gone where I was not trying to impress anyone, where I left the house without first freaking out about what I was wearing and worrying whether the other girls would look better than I did.

This evening ash, jaxx and I took a walk at 730 to watch the sun set. The spring forward time change is a blessing, even if it hurts for one night.

There are three packed boxes in my room with things that I don't think I'll be needing again before we move out. I have lived in this room for almost three years. At least my furniture has been here this long. The hardest thing to start packing was my books. There is something comfortable about having shelves full of books, however, realistically, I will not be reading most of them in the next month and a bit.

I own about 14 pairs of shoes. Most made in China. A few from places like Vietnam, Cambodia and just one from Canada. Which I happened to purchase at Value Village. Tidbit of information about me: I desire to own a collection of pumps with an rainbow-like assortment of colours.

Thursday, March 8

continued from previous post: Latin America and Al

Topic 2b: My Spanish professor found out that I was not accepted to Argentina. I had emailed her to ask for advice as to which country to visit and if she had heard of any good language immersion programs. She wrote back to say that she had a little chat with someone at the centre for International Programs (well, she didn't call it that but I hope that's what she meant) and I can go. I'm supposed to ask her tomorrow. WHAT? It doesn't work like that does it? And why me? There were 26 or so other people who were not accepted either. You know what is the weirdest part? I've gotten myself so worked up about the idea of another country, a cheaper program, a homestay family, I'm not sure if I want to go on a university exchange anymore. Sigh.

Topic 3: I have recently begun turning to another source for my news. I started regularly checking CBC website for news. Then I added BBC for a broader picture since it caters a bit better to world news than the CBC. Now my new pal is Al Jazeera. I must admit that when I heard that it was a popular and credible news site my first reaction (ok, i'm ashamed) was "I must have heard wrong. How can a credible global, news source come from the middle east??" So I rejected it right away based on my own biases. I decided to give it a chance this past week and I must say that it is not as extensive as BBC in terms of number of stories but it has to be the least biased news source I have encountered and has as wide or greater coverage in terms of countries and geographical areas covered as BBC. I recommend.

3 topics on my brain

topic 1: I'll go for the most superficial first. I have a rant. One of my classes designates a certain portion of our marks to case discussions. This brings out some very annoying, vacuum like behaviour from the class. In order to illustrate my point I will now be facetious.
Professor: today we will be talking about the pants that I'm wearing and different options I have for pants.
Annoying student: I would first like to say that the pants you are currently wearing are really great pants.
A.S.2: First, I would like to agree with what A.S. 1 said and add that black is a great colour for you but that the option of grey pants would be equally flattering.
A.S.3: I think a lighter shade of black might be good.
A.S.4: Or even a shade somewhere in the middle, with a stripe.
A.S.1 (again): When my dad buys grey pants he buys them from *insert expensive store here* and they have quite a few striped pants in stock right now.

I could go on forever, or have thought of a better example but the point is that they all scramble to say something, anything, that no one listens to what the other students say. They constantly make the same point as someone else or just make a random comment to open their mouths. I refuse to stoop to that level. Rant over.

Topic 2: actually I have class right now so i'll have to cover these later. So this just became solely a rant post.

Wednesday, March 7

Not a rant

I just need to prequel this with: it isn't rant about political correctness.

When riding the bus my mind wanders and I often find myself reading anything and everything in sight. I noticed a sign that stated: These signs are reserved for seniors and persons with disabilities and ...sont reserve por les agees et handicapees. (excuse the lack of accents)

Notice a difference? Depending on the language used there is a politically correct term. Is this an anglocentric phenomenon? If you're english and 'disabled' you are "a person with a disability" or now at guelph "differently abled" but if you're French you're still handicapped.

Monday, March 5

busy weekend

I pretty much threw the biggest, most funnest party of my party throwing life for our dear friend who will be hitched this summer. Problem? That's all the bragging I can do because the happenings have to remain top secret. Oh well. Just know it was a fantastic party!

Friday night I officially 'barhopped' for the first time. The flow was Cowboys, Doogies, the Ranch. Great times. Even if Cowboys was a little dead there was still line dancing lessons.

Here is the deal: I'm not going to Argentina. At least not through the school. i was accepted to the Monterrey campus of the Mexican ITESM university. Looking through the brochure the campus is amazing (10 soccer fields! what?). The perk is that the city is beautiful and it is a popular destination for international students so meeting people shouldn't be too difficult. However, it is expensive to do since i would be paying Guelph tuition (when I don't even need more classes to graduate and can't get a minor for the ones I take), and a few thousand dollars for living and food. Thats not counting insurance, fun times, flight, etc.

Here is what I'm thinking
Objective: learn spanish
-Monterrey is beautiful but I would likely be encouraged to take a class or two that would improve my spanish and then classes in English. Also, I could fall into the trap of only associating with other exchange students and just speaking a lot of English. I don't want that.
SO: I am now researching schools throughout latin america that offer straight Spanish. I would live with a host family (room and board!) and take 4-6 classes of spanish daily with 4 or 5 other students per class. All of this costing the same or less than the term in Mexico. Right now my top choices are Antigua, Guatemala and Quito, Ecuador. Ah, life is exciting, no?

Friday, March 2

i could really go for some ice cream

As seen on a poster/ad just outside Laura Secord:
"It just isn't Easter without a Laura Secord cream egg"

hmmm. is that what Easter has become? According to the logic of this poster Christ could have stayed behind the rock forever but as long as we all get Laura Secord cream eggs there is still something to celebrate.

Update on argentina/mexico wallowing: I don't think I did a thorough job yesterday, i think i had fun by accident. i've moved on to denial/avoidance until sunday.

Thursday, March 1

Pathetic Fallacy

It's March 1st. This morning during my first class I received an email stating that i have been accepted on exchange to Mexico. You heard right. Not Argentina. Needless to say that I am thoroughly disappointed (crushed you might say). There are many factors that I can talk about in another post but basically I want South America and not Mexico. I'm not happy.

i have purchased the latest issue of Adbusters and some pop and I'm going to wallow for the rest of today before I decide what to make of this.