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Tuesday, January 31, 2006

All of this has happened before...

You know it's odd...I used to get excited about the Oscars. I'd try and see all the Best Picture nominees and discuss the choices avidly with J and friends but more and more with each passing year I find that I greet the Oscars with a "Meh" sort of attitude. Ambivalence of the highest order.
It's not that they're nominating bad films, it just seems that the Academy tries so hard to "distinguish" itself that it ends up alienating a good part of the films out there. Just films of a certain "kind" get selected and often skill of a filmmaker or editor are ignored if it doesn't suit the academy's definition of good filmmaking...that, and sci fi seems largely ignored, except for the odd sound, costume or visual effect nominations...which they often lose to historical films.
I thought maybe I'd be excited about this years nominees but I'm rather blase about the whole thing yet again. I mean what happened to the childish fun and coolness of movies? I'm hardly a film snob. I saw the Underworld sequel last night and in my humble opinion it kicks ass...good old fashioned vampire werewolf gore B movie with A level effects and a decent enough story.
I don't think my tastes are mutating. I'm still all for good drama/fiction but I'm starting to feel like a lot of things have been "done" and are being redone for no good reason other than to have a star in them or to win an Oscar. I'm enjoying documentaries and fiction and sci-fi as of late...more edgy and thought out and less pandering. That, and the comedy stuff seems to be less and less my style of humor - I haven't really seen a comedy that made me laugh a lot since Anchorman. And after greatsci fi like Serenity I expect a movie to either look cool enough to distract me from it's flaws or have a great plot or characters I genuinely care about.
Hmm..an example of movies nominated for Oscars I genuinely don't get: Sideways -WHah? A boring movie about 2 characters I genuinely disliked doing uninteresting things and it got wads of nominations. But..then again I really liked "Walk the Line" which is up for a few things, so I guess it's a coin toss. The fact that movies can get made with gaping plot holes that should not be allowed to survive past preproduction still baffles me. If children ask me why something is mixed up in a film, shouldn't someone else adultish catch it too?? I just don't get it I guess.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not negative about most things, just ambivalent. I expect too much. I know there has to be something like tha Oscars to battle the mind numbness of the People's Choice Awards here in North America, but there has to be a happy medium. And there's nothing wrong with liking something just cuz it's really cool.
Being in marooned on the prairies does make it hard to see more indie films without waiting a few months more than everyone else, but a lot of the good stuff makes it here...if only for a few days. It seems as though there is a dry spell as of late.
Oh well...there will always hopefully be eye candy films. I know I said "cool!" like a teenager a lot last night during the Underworld sequel. It's been said that I am easily impressed and maybe so. The trailer for the X Men 3 movie made me shout "Woo" in the theatre and I can't wait for V for Vendetta.

or, Maybe I'm just a big geek.
Yeah...that's it.

Friday, January 27, 2006

An open letter to my cats

Yes you are cute.
Yes I love you both.
Yes I think it's great that you want to sit in my lap in the morning while I try and wake up and face the day.
The thing is, when I am doing exercises on the eliptical trainer and muscle training on the exercise ball I do not need your help. I realise you are both probably in better shape than I am but I am doing OK on my own, really. Pushups are not better when you sit on my back as I do them and I don't need howls of encouragement as I do my cardio. Staring at me from the top of the bookshelf just makes me nervous and I don't have the coordination to rub your belly when I am in the middle of doing situps. Biting my ankles as I stretch isn't very endearing either.

I tell you what.: Tomorrow is saturday. You can sit on my head as I sleep in and I'll give you wet food and let you sit my lap while I read...just let me exercise in peace all week and the weekends are yours.
Thanks.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Ace!

You scored as The Seventh Doctor (Sylvester McCoy). You loved the Seventh Doctor best. The stories weren't so good, but he had Ace and a fab umbrella.

The Seventh Doctor (Sylvester McCoy)

94%

The Eighth Doctor (Paul McGann)

69%

The Ninth Doctor (Christoper Eccleston)

63%

The Sixth Doctor (Colin Baker)

56%

The Fifth Doctor (Peter Davidson)

50%

The Second Doctor (Patrick Troughton)

38%

The Third Doctor (Jon Pertwee)

31%

The Fourth Doctor (Tom Baker)

31%

The First Doctor (William Hartnell)

13%

Which Doctor Who are you?

Set for stun


Well...it's over and done with. Votes cast and ballots counted. Not what I wanted but better than I expected. More NDP and another minority government *and* Martin is stepping down. J and I have been debating politics the past week or so trying to predict what is to come and try and be objective and separate it from our hopes of what is to come. Not that I want a PC government (BElieve me I don't) - it's just that they're a minority and they'll have to work hard and maybe even do what the people want to stay in power and get the support of the NDP and others to do it. The Liberals were reminded that corruption is not OK and that we're not that stupid, but that we're not that enthralled with the PC's either.

You know, it's interesting: If it were as simple as voting for the person and not tha party I'd have a lot more joy in voting. Take for example, my old MP from University days, Ralph Goodale. I've met him and heard him speak on many occasions - a decent man with good intentions. I'm pretty much NDP as far as how I wear my political hat but I always voted for him. This time around the guy in our local riding who was NDP is a former police chief and mayor who is generally disliked here and was never truly absolved of being involved in covering up the whole Stonechild murder. And yet what is my alternative? A Liberal guy who switched parties and has no clear opinion on things or a Conservative MP who has sent us letters as constituents that were borderline racist and had misinformation and made up facts in them? You try and vote along which party is the most in line with what you want, but how will that carry through? So frustrating. The "who is less awful" question is a terrible way to vote. And "strategic voting"...dont'e get me started. It makes you almost want to run in politics to try and get better people on the ballot.

Having said all that, I was disillusioned with the whole point of voting this month until I had a few discussions with a Postdoc in our department. She is from the Ukraine and came here with nothing but her PhD, her family and a suitcase or two. She lived through the rise and fall of communism and her family is still there. They were a part of the huge orange protests there where the people literally camped out in the streets in the winter for days to make sure their democratic rights were preserved. By comparison, we seem quite whiny and complacent. She said to me "I cannot understand how you all take your democracy for granted. You have a say in what happens to your country. That is NOT nothing!"
And it's true. It's not.
And that's why I voted
And no I didn't eat my ballot in protest. And that's why I think we have to vote and keep trying to get it right until they fix the electoral process and the country. We have a lot to be proud of and so much further to go.
Now...hopefully the new government won't screw up things too much.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Remember not to eat your ballot

Greeting fellow space monkeys.
In my husband's quest to learn obscure information, he came accross the following tidbit of information from the FAQ of the elections canada website:

What happens if you eat your ballot and are you allowed to do so?

Well, as it turns out, they've thought of everything! The "elaborate set of checks and balances" means they'd *know*. So if you feel the urge to eat your ballot, don't bother. Which raises a question not answered on the site: if you go to the early polls and eat the ballot, let nature improve it, find it again and *then* turn it in on the actual voting day would it be accepted, providing the little tab was still there to tear off? (You know, as a sort of comment on the whole electoral process)
I know, I know...I'm just amused that enough people have asked about it that it's made the FAQ!

Inquiring minds want to know!

So, as you vote today, remember not to eat your ballots!
And vote! Seriously, we're a democracy and if we don't vote, we can't make our future what we want it to be...and we can't complain about the results!

Friday, January 20, 2006

Mrs. Potatohead

I just got my flickr account to work. I'm Mrs. Potatohead. Hope to have a few pics in there by the end of the weekend....just thought you might want to know. If not, then just don't look.

So there.

Nyeah.

Later:
OK so a link would be helpful I suppose. I just figured you could just go there and pick someone's photos. I'm a real newbie at the whole Flickr thing. This should take you there...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/mrs_potatohead

Hope it works...the link test above should work too. It's interesting...on my mac I can't add weblinks but on my PC I can.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

My body is rebelling

OK...so I've finally gotten serious this week with my being more active thing, alternating between the crosstrainer in the basement and an exercise ball I have for muscle workout. I am sleeping better and I have way more energy but I have to say this: My body is rebelling.
I have muscles I forgot about trying to make me walk like an old lady. I'm sure after a few days more I'll get used to it and my muscles won't protest so much - it's not like I'm being overly crazy about it all. I just can't ride my bike to work in the winter and usually by this time of the winter I'm lethargic, a bit more jiggly and moody as hell, so I figured I'd better get on with it as those things were well on their way. It's so true - excercise really does help your state of mind. I suppose I should focus on what I eat as well, but I've never been a really bad person as far as nutrition goes, I just like food too much. I just want to know I can go hiking or do things and not be way out of breath. It really helps control my asthma when I excercise regularly. A case of the "squeaky lungs" as I ran to catch the bus on friday convinced me I had to look after my cardiovascular system better. I already feel a difference.
Anyways, the point of all this is my coworkers are tired of hearing me complain about how stiff I've been this week so I thought I'd foist it on you all out there.
Cause they'll beat me if I mention it to them again...

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

I love winter...


Just a quick post to show you the view from my front yard...so purdy.
It's been foggy lately with fluffy snow and the trees are just coated.
I love winter.

Andromeda Strain?


So the NASA asteroid probe is back on earth with samples.
All J and I can think about is Andromeda Strain...hope that DOESN'T happen to us.
I can't wait for the results.

Heh heh...science is cool...

Friday, January 13, 2006

I pity the fool...


Well, being Ukranian Christmas Eve, I no longer have the excuse to keep up my Christmas lights. Ukranian Christmas is long over. Soo...this weekend I suppose I will take them down (if I have to...sniff). I'll take some pictures of the lights and stuff before I take them down...If any turn out, I'll post a few.

I've got Mr.T on the brain today. A friend of ours, who has a thing for Mr. T, made us a copy of a Mr. T inspirational video he made for teens in the 80's called "Be Somebody or Be Somebody's Fool". If you ever get the chance to see it - do. It's like a car crash - it's awful but you just can't look away. There's a certain guilty pleasure in giggling uncontrollably at what may have been cool when I was about 7 or 8. The 80's are a thing to behold. Combine them with Mr. T and what can I say? You have to see it to believe it.

And so: my last holiday wishes to all of you out there. Peace and joy for the next year to come. All is new and all is possible.
Happy thoughts to you all on this fine day.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

I need a doctor...


They took my Doctor Who away.
Frack.
We've been waiting to get the Doctor Who new series on DVD - it was to be released on Feb. 14. Now, suddenly it's delayed...indefinitely...it's even gone off Amazon and can't be found.
Why?
Who Knows?
I'm just worried that since BBC is in negotiations with the US broadcasters to show it there Warner won't want to put it out on DVD until AFTER it airs there so people won't just buy it. That could take forever. Why oh why can't Canada be more separate from the US in this kinda stuff. The US didn't want it so they can wait. CBC was a proud sponsor, so why can't we Canadians buy it and watch it? We could buy the 2nd season of the new Battlestar Glactica on DVD from the US before it aired here. If this is the reason, what makes them so special?

Much later: Woot! It's back. We in Canada still get it.
Good. I can relax now.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Hippie Crack

In my first monthly quest of the year have perfected my chewy granola bar recipe.
The most amazing granola bar ever invented with nothing in it I dislike and no preservatives...
They are so good I feel the need to tell the world about them. Heck I'd even mail you all one. Well OK that's just dumb, but MAN. So good...like hippie crack I tells ya.
I'm not a health nut or anything, but I got to thinking - why am I buying granola bars? How hard can they be to make and why would I want to want a bunch of preservatives and other crap if I don't have to eat them? So I tried many things and tweaked to include favorite things like pumpkin seeds and nuts and raspberry almond granola and I think I have it perfected for my taste.
As soon as I get home I'm going to eat one...

Monday, January 09, 2006

Ring ring ring ring ring ring ring, hamster phone....

Correct me if I'm wrong, but wouldn't this be worth an A?

http://www.ananova.com/news/story/sm_1513938.html

Besides being a cool school project, it's a cool idea. I mean, who wouldn't want a hamster powered cell phone?
___________________________________________________
And of course, having nothing *else* interesting to say, I will fill out the following...
What's Going on in My Life Right Now

Current attire: Blue jeans. Grey/green wool sweater, green t-shirt, black specs, work boots/winter boots

Current mood: Tired. Monday mornings are harsh...I have to learn to not sleep in and stay up til all hours on the weekend (The Jerk was on...I just *had* to stay up until the thermos song was over)

Current music: Nothing. No music allowed where I am

Current annoyance: People for whom there are no consequences. If there's always someone to bail you out, there's no reason to do the right thing or try hard to accomplish something. Plus, being told how to do something by someone like this who has never really had to do it by themselves can be damn frustrating...

Current thing: Thinking up excuses as to why I need my Christmas lights. I don't want to put them away just yet. Ukranian Christmas is still coming up. Yeah, yeah, that's it...

Current desktop picture: Still a photoshopped picture of me as a twilek...should change it I suppose

Current song in head: "You Can't Kill A Deadman" by Beats For Beginners

Current book: "Know It All". A book written by a guy as he tries to read the entire Encyclopedia Britannica.

Current video in player: Nothing.

Current DVD in player: South Park Season 6, last disc. ("oh Lemmiwinks oh Lemmiwinks...")

Current refreshment: coffee and rice crackers (there's some spiced gouda around here somewhere)

Current worry: I'd like to know if I'm going on strike or not. I've been holding my breath (and my money) for a while now and the suspense is killing me.

Current thought: Is there a laundry robot invented yet? If not, can I invent one? Maybe I should just bribe my husband to do the laundry. OR get him to bribe *me* to do it.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

You can't trick the trickster

Brilliant and sneaky: You are an Arcane Trickster!
Score! You have a prestige class. A prestige class can only be taken after you've fulfilled certain requirements. This may mean that you're an exceptionally talented person, but it probably doesn't.
Arcane Tricksters combine arcane magic with rogue skills and sensibilities. They use their magic to confuse their opponents or to augment their more mundane, roguish skills. If you thought it was annoying keeping an eye that that rogue, the Arcane Trickster is probably picking your pocket from the other side of the room.
Both smart and sneaky, you're probably the type of person that loves planning practical jokes... either that or knocking over banks.
Arcane Trickster
33% Combativeness, 66% Sneakiness, 61% Intellect, 50% Spirituality

My test tracked 4 variables How you compared to other people your age and gender:
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 10% on Combativeness
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 92% on Sneakiness
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 25% on Intellect
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 56% on Spirituality
Link: The RPG Class Test

So many questions...

As 2006 begins, I find the need to answer a series of random, nosy questions I found. I have no photos yet of Christmas as I'm too lazy to load them on the Mac , so this will fill the void until then...

1. What did you do in 2005 that you'd never done before? Went to the West Ed waterslides with my husband - he learned to swim and overcame a phobia of water this year. So cool to do that with him..we were like a couple of kids.

2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year? I didn't make any, so none to break last year. This year, I've resolved to be more active. I'd actually like to be jogging again in the summer, but we'll see. I'll settle for just exercising more.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth? Yup, my sister in law and my friend both had baby girls.

4. Did anyone close to you die? No, my old boss did tho rather suddenly.

5. What countries did you visit? Just Canada - to Vancouver. Had a fantastic time.

6. What would you like to have in 2006 that you lacked in 2005? A painted living room. It's a big room. I've been ignoring it.

7. What date from 2005 will remain etched upon your memory, and why? The Star Wars GOMP party. One of the coolest evenings ever.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? Tie between making a octagon stained glass window for my uncle and having the whole family at the house for thanksgiving (over 40 people) without a hitch.

9. What was your biggest failure? Not using the exercisae machine downstairs as regularly as I'd hoped to.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury? No. It's been a good year...not sick or anything major this year. The odd sniffle, but nothing crazy.

11. What was the best thing you bought? Got J a Force FX lightsaber for Christmas. I share it vicariously.

12. Whose behaviour merited celebration? My husband - the whole water thing.

13. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed? A friend - they are not themselves...very frustrating.

14. Where did most of your money go? the house and paying off our debts...how boring.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about? Doctor Who came back! Pete got married - Plus I got to go visit old friends I hadn't seen in eons in Vancouver along with that.

16. What song will always remind you of 2005? "Swallowed in the Sea" by Coldplay

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:

Happier or Sadder? happier

Thinner or Fatter? the same

Richer or Poorer? more cash, but more debt...so the same in the end.

18. What do you wish you'd done more of? Telling people how I felt or thought about them.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of? Complaining about things I can't change

20. How did you be spend New Year's Eve? Went "camping" in the living room with Jay. Set up the tent and spent a romantic evening together...so very nice.

22. Did you fall in love in 2005? Already was...still am.

23. How many one-night stands? None - got a love already.

24. What was your favorite TV program? Battlestar Galactica

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year? No.

26. What was the best book you read? Tigana by Guy Gavirel Kay

27. What was your greatest musical discovery? Death Cab for Cutie.

28. What did you want and get? an iPod.

30. What was your favourite film of this year? Toss up between Serenity, Batman Begins and The Chronicles of Narnia movie.

31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? Went out and had a campfire in the woods with friends. I was/still am 32.

32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? Paying off our student loans with money I found buried in the back yard.

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2005? Comfy. A bit too casual maybe, but I haven't been shopping in a while. Jeans and fitted shirts for the most part. Anything nice I wear to work invariable gets wrecked, to it's tricky to get nice things that I actually wear...so most of it is older and plain.

34. What kept you sane? J

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? I make it a habit to try not to be concerned with public figures, as I can't pretend to know them well enough to admire them. I've been in favor of what Jack Layton's been doing politically tho if that counts.

36. What political issue stirred you the most? The lack of speedy relief for the earthquake victims from Pakistan. Winter was coming and these people had nowhere to stay and nowhere to go...very sad.

37. Who did you miss? My old friend Karli. I've been trying to track her down...she's been MIA since she moved to England.

38. Who were the best new people you met? a few..don't like to name names.

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2005: Value the friends you have. Share random acts of happiness and make everyone's day a bit brighter, as your day and everyone else's will be so much better.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year: "That's where I belong, and you belong with me"