Friday, April 29, 2005

City Life

I've been back in Montreal for about a week now. I forget how much I love the city. However, I forget how small of a city it can really be.

I graduated high school 5 years ago (goddammit I'm old). I don't really talk to anyone from high school besides my best friend, MC. Things happen, people go their separate ways. It's to be expected. Every now and then in the past 5 years - I mean rarely - I'll run into someone when I'm home in Montreal. This has only happened about 3 or 4 times throughout these years. In the past 2 days, I have run into 3 separate girls from high school. All of which I haven't seen since we graduated. It's much too weird for my tastes, especially when I can no longer remember their last names. We were a small graduating class - around 100 girls - so I knew everyone's last names at one point.

Wednesday night I was at dinner with friends. One of the waitresses in the restaurant turned out to be a girl from high school. We did the eye-contact-slight-facial-recognition-but-unsure-of-who-the-other-person-is thing, and then quickly looked away. Fairly weird situation.

Yesterday, I'm at the bank to get traveler's cheques and euros for my trip (5 days away!). A girl working at the bank turns out to be another girl I went to high school with. I'm really weirded out at this point, having remembered the incident from the day before. We do the eye contact recognition thingy again.

Last night at the bar, a popular touristy bar downtown, one of the bartender's turns out to be
another freaking girl I went to high school with! At this point, I'm seriously weirded out so I avoid all eye contact and down my free ladies-night beer.

What the hell is all this about? Why does God hate me? I've been a good little atheist, I swear it! This is too much
Blast from the Past for my taste. We hates it.

If I run into someone from high school while in Greece, I'm going to throw myself off the cruise ship. I'm better off stranded in the Aegean.

Thursday, April 21, 2005


I've been packing since I move out of Waterloo on Saturday - FUCKING FINALLY... ahem, sorry. Upon packing, I have realized the following things:
  • Dust is sneaky. My god, it's everywhere. Three years of dust is really a spectacularly disgusting sight. I consider myself a pretty clean person - Amy and I had the cleanest room in our residence first year. But there are just some areas that don't get dusted regularly, on in my case, at all.
  • I am a book whore. Between my school books and my pleasure-reading books, I must have the contents of an entire tropical rainforest stashed in this tiny room. Ho-ly crap.
  • I keep the weirdest things. I've discovered numerous collections of random buttons from random garments, 3 year old half used rolls of Tums, etc.
  • I have sanitary pads all over my damn room. I've found at least 12 separate pads in 12 separate places - in drawers, between books, under the bed, behind the desk. I have no idea how they got there.
  • Half of the storage place in this room is taken up by shoes. Christ on a cracker, I have too many shoes. (Okay, it felt wrong and dirty even typing that - there's no such thing as too many shoes).
  • The amount of school notes that I've accumulated over my lifetime is astounding. And I have a strange panicky dialogue session with myself when I throw them out - well I might need that at some point... true, they're on Hindusim... but I might need that in Behavioural Neuroscience... must keep them... MUST KEEP THEM.
It's been an interesting week. Finals are done, thesis is handed in, and some goodbyes have been exchanged. I'm terribly excited to move back to Montreal.

13 days till I leave for Greece and Turkey. Things just don't get better than this.

Listening to: May You Never - John Martyn

Sunday, April 17, 2005


How did blog explosion know I have a terrible fear of sharks?! Those bastards!

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Listening to
: Somebody Told Me - The Killers

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Neurotically Compulsive

Greetings from Procrastination Land.

The last final of my undergrad degree is on Saturday, and I just can't bring myself to care. However, there is an interesting deeply ingrained struggle going on here.

At a conscious level, I know these marks don't really count. I got into grad school, no one is looking at these marks, and I really don't need to keep the straight A average anymore. Sounds reasonable enough. This doesn't mean I'm going to totally blow off studying, just that I don't need to knock myself out with the effort, either.

This, unfortunately, goes against my nature. At an unconscious level, I am and forever will be a completely neurotic over-achiever. I can try as much as I want to convince myself that I can settle for a B, but there's still that nagging feeling of "well, I really could get an A you know... at least an A-, because it won't look too good if my marks just suddenly drop off out of the blue."

And so the panic sets in. The more I fuck around and don't study, the more panicky I am. Then I try to rationalize it with the aforementioned justifications. This never works, of course, because I am hopelessly ingrained with the need to do well.

What this leaves me with is the realization that at least I am intrinsically motivated. I obviously don't feel the need to do well for others, it's just a stupid motivational drive that's been in me since birth - since those first few months where I apparently made it explicitly clear what I wanted and how immediately I wanted it.

I'm a psych student, so of course I'm neurotic and compulsive. I wouldn't want to destroy the stereotype.

Listening to: Take Me Out - Franz Ferdinand

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Quarter Life Crisis

Official Countdown till I Leave Waterloo: 12 Days

It's hard to believe that 3 years have flown by so quickly. Time seems to speed up exponentially when you get older. I distinctly remember the exact moment when I realized that time was escaping me faster and faster by the year. I was sitting in my sec 4 (grade 10, for those of you outside of Quebec) homeroom, talking to someone who I now forget, mentioning how I couldn't believe we were already in sec 4 - and that next year we were graduating. Sitting in our little wooden chairs, legs crossed under our maroon and forest green kilts, breathing in that moment of transcendence when you realize your little carefully constructed world is about to balloon out into the unknown.

Well, I have graduated twice more since then, and about to graduate for a third time. The end of my undergraduate degree, the end of Wilfrid Laurier, and the end of Waterloo. My world is constantly ballooning these days, I feel desensitized. I adapt to life-altering changes like a chameleon changes colours to blend into it's environment. After a while, change becomes the norm.

I have mixed feelings about this particular change. I really do hate Waterloo, I feel so isolated here - from the city, from my friends, and from my family. Not to mention the fact that Waterloo constantly smells like ass - the 'Loo and City of Ass, apt nicknames I can assure you. I'm dreadfully tired of Laurier, and it's innate ability to fuck up everything up and make my life as miserable as possible. There are some people here that I will miss. The majority, however, will not be missed. And they won't miss me.

The ambivalence sets in when I think about my life in a broader scope. The end of my undergraduate degree coincides with the ending of a preliminary period. Up to now has been a lead up to my life and career. Maybe I'm over exaggerating, but the undergraduate period is a time to let loose, party, enjoy the benefits of a care-free youth. I feel like I haven't been able to do those things as much as I should, as much as I want - with the end of my undergraduate comes the start of my life. Now it's serious.

I'm simultaneously very excited to start my life: moving back to the city, getting my own apartment, being able to see my friends regularly and often, being within minutes from my family, not having to miss out on certain things because I'm away. I've always been such an independent person, and that will never change. But I'm sad to see my youth slipping away through my fingers while I'm still frantically trying to hold on to it.

Sitting here at my desk, legs crossed in my cotton pajama pants, the early afternoon sunlight sifting through the windows, 6 years after that first moment of transcendence. Living in the moment is so hard to do.

Listening to: All in All - Lifehouse

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Boourns for Politics

::start rant::

I am tired of the following:

1.) Political blogs.

About 80% of the blogs that I surf are based upon some political platform. Conservative, Liberal, the Right, the Left. blah blah blah.
99% are American. Same shit, different blog. NONE of these blogs have anything original to say, it's all the same prejudice and bias and ignorance in subtly different forms. A few may be faintly amusing, but I use 'faintly' and 'amusing' in a very cautious way. Just more thoughtless sheep forcing their blindly accepted hegemony down the collective blogosphere's throat.

Not to mention the uproar over Terri Schiavo. For the life of me I can't conceive of how this has blown to these proportions. Mentions of her and the controversy surrounding her case are EVERYWHERE. It's inescapable, especially on blogs. Yes, there are some moral and ethical issues at stake here - NONE of which are new. These cases occur so often, in such similar forms, and have been politically existent for many years. Why all this hoopla now?

Furtheremore, how come Schiavo's case has received this excess of media attention whereas the Minnesota School Shooting where 9 people were killed has received close to nothing?! Is this old news? Are school shootings now passé? Or is this less important because it took place in a non-white native reserve community?

I'm tired of the fact that these questions are even somewhat relevant. It's sad, it's frustrating, and it's so damn pervasive.

2.) Academic Politics.

So my Thesis Poster Conference (clicky) was on Thursday. It involves making a 40" by 56" inch poster that summarizes your thesis, and as the above pic shows, all the thesis students have their posters on display in the courtyard of the Science Building for faculty and students to peruse for a few hours. I had to stand by my poster for this time and answer any questions from people while also having to give a 10-15 minute presentation of my thesis to two faculty evaluators.

I had found out the day before that my two evaluators were notoriously hard markers. Wonderful, but that's not all: one of the evaluators, let's call him Dr. X, thoroughly dislikes my thesis supervisor and has even attacked her personal life during a meeting. So I basically knew I was going to get a hard time from him. Oh was I mistaken. I got a really hard time from him. He basically reamed me out for 35 minutes, telling me my results were weak, and my conclusions were faulty based on the statistics. He teaches stats, so he spent a good amount of time telling me how bad my stats were. heh. Such a nice fellow!

It was rude, mean-spirited, and completely unnecessary. I'm an undergraduate for fucks sake! Of course I didn't do an analysis of covariance - I don't fucking KNOW how to do one! Yes, it was far from a perfect experiment, but the fact that we managed to pull off some significant results definitely speaks to the relevancy of the manipulation. I was attacked for purely political reasons, and I'm tired of it.

3. (last one, I promise) Relationship Politics.

In friendships and other relationships there can exist those certain unwritten rules - they differ from relationship to relationship, but they're always there. The best relationships involve either very few of these rules, or rules that are explicitly discussed. When there are too many of these rules, the workings of the friendship or other relationships can become far too confusing and frustrating. There are things you want to say or talk about, but you can't because it violates one of those stupid damn rules.

Most of the time I can deal with these minor frustrations, but lately it just seems like it's all piling on top of eachother and driving me up the proverbial wall in the process.


::end rant::

Listening to: Bohemian Like You - Dandy Warholls