Monday, October 31, 2005

Yogurt and M&Ms

That's what I had for dinner. Blech. I haven't really even been hungry the last few days. And I've been sooo tired. I can't even stay awake to watch a show. I'm asleep on the couch within the first 45 mins. My house is a mess, and I have no motivation at ALL to do anything about it. I feel down, icky. I feel far away from God. I miss those spontaneous bursts of joy I used to have. I had them all the time: having the kids at school waving at me with a great big grin as I walked to my car after school, or hearing the crunch of the leaves under my feet, having a song on the radio touch my heart. I haven't felt that way for a year. Where did I go? What's wrong with me? God has even done some really cool stuff lately, but even the joy in that seems dulled. I want the old me back!

Happy Halloween!


Saturday, October 29, 2005

A new addition

I finally sucked it up and got a flickr account. I have so many pictures, and nowhere near enough space on my webspace from my internet service provider to post them. So far I'm happy with Flickr, we'll see how it goes. I've uploaded some pictures from my crazy summer of adventure already, an there will be more picture sets to come. Check them out by clicking the "Flickr" logo on the side bar. Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Just following the herd

According to the news, over two-thirds of all adults in Canada have a lottery ticket for tonight's $40 million draw. Six minutes before the cut-off, I decided to join them. Fourty million dollars! Come ON folks, who wouldn't?!?! Did you know lotto has a "buy online" option? So great! I was too embarassed to actually go to store and buy one (the fact I'm broadcasting it over the internet is beside the point....).

In twenty minutes, I'm gonna be rrrrrrich! (That will more than cover the stupid ticket I got today right in front of my house. But that's another rant for another time.... gggrrrrrrr)

Gotta go watch the draw and check off my winning numbers.

Yeah right. *rolls eyes at self for getting suckered in*

Who needs sleep?

It's 4:16 am. I have to be up in two hours. Not cool. Not cool at all.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

School's on!

BC teachers voted 77% to return to school tomorrow. It's not an overwhelming yes vote, for sure. All eyes are on the government now to see what they will do now with the mediator's non-binding recommendations.

Two solid weeks out on strike. Yuckity yuck yuck! While it was nice having my days to myself, I'm glad to be back. And also glad not to be getting a criminal record for contempt of court. (This was deemed an illegal strike, for those who don't know, and teachers were found in civil contempt of court. Had we stayed out after the recommended settlement, we would surely have been found in criminal contempt.) Happy days.

I'll sure be glad to see the kids tomorrow!

Oh dear oh dear

Ever since I posted about tequila I've been fretting you all think I"m a drunk! Ha ha ha... as if anyone in their right mind should even care about a post like that, but hey, I"m... 'special.'

You're probably laughing at me even harder now than you were before. That's me, here for your entertainment.

You're laughing with me...


Saturday, October 22, 2005

You learn something new every day

Like how to do tequila shots.

That was the lesson last night, a typical Friday night for me. Minus the tequila.

I didn't have any plans, and I was soooo sick of strike news, and wanted to hang out with friends for the evening. My friend
Brad popped onto MSN, so I invited him over to watch a movie. I wanted to watch it at my place cause I was jsut too lazy to go out. Turns out that had the added benefit of me not having to drive home. In between making the plans and Brad getting here, I had this highly unusual desire to drink. Now before last night, I have never had more than two drinks in a row, and even after last night, I have never been drunk. So when Brad got here, I pulled out the contents of my liquor cabinet. I also pointed out the champagne (ok, ok, sparkling wine) in my fridge.

We decided on Tequila and bubbly. I decided I needed to eat, first, lest someting very, very bad happen to me. Brad decided to take photos to document the evening. One shot and three glasses of champagne later, my head was a wee bit wobbly and I dozed off and on all the way through the movie. Brad threw popcorn at me periodically to keep me awake.

"Wow. I never thought I'd be doing tequila shots with HILLARY!" Always trying to surprise people, I suppose.

Lick salt, down tequila, bite lemon. Repeat as necessary.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

My brain hurts

Well, it would seem that I got myself into something bigger than I intended to over on my strike blog. It's been getting an average of 250-300 hits a day, one regular commenter has been promoting my site on the radio, and it's the FIRST site that comes up when you do a search on MSN for bc teacher strike. It's pretty high up there on Google, too (#2, I think) when you add the word blog. It's going to be sent out to an email list of 980 music teachers around the province with the next update, and today, it made it's way into the picket bulletin for all Vancouver Elementary schools. I didn't even give them the site! It's kinda fun, I feel famous! ;)

But it's also been challenging, because there have been many people writing to disagree. It's been a challenge to figure out exactly what I think in the midst of this (still not there yet!) and to wonder if some of what commenters are saying is right. I think, if an education system gets to the point that governments declare a teacher strike illegal, yet teachers feel that what they are fighting for is SO important that they are willing to defy a court order and stay out on the pickert line, there obviously needs to be some major changes made. But in the midst of a crisis, you deal with a crisis, THEN you look at fixing the system.

Lots of commenters, one in particular, are proposing such huge changes to the education system in BC, and it's pretty overwhelming to think about. I don't agree with him/them, necessarily, I dont think, but man, all this reading and thinking... it's making my brain hurt! ;)

For heaven's sake, I didn't even know what kind of views constituted "left" and "right" when this strike started! I just started my strike blog as a venting place to rant and post pictures and thoughts about the stike without boring you all to death with political talk. (When I come accross a political blog, I pass on by. I didn't want you to do the same with mine!) But now I'm up to my eyeballs in debate and questions and wonderings and a weeny bit of doubt and a whole lot of frustration. AAARRGGG! It's good, but not what I had intended. It's a little much for this supposedly minimally political gal.

I'm off to go do something mindless now. Duuuuuuhhhhhh..... no ask me nuttin compleecated.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Thursday, October 13, 2005

One Day For Aids

My friend John Andru is amazing. Amazing, amazing, amazing. No wonder City TV chose him as this week's City Hero. He has initiated and planned a huge AIDS fundraising and awareness campaign called One Day For AIDS. Basically, it's to bring the AIDS pandemic down to a tangible level. We can get so overwhelmed by statistics that it's hard to feel like we can do anything. But, what One Day For AIDS is asking of people is that they give either one day of their salary or one day of their time to help fight AIDS. At left, John displays a pin of the AIDS ribbon he received for his work with Serving in Mission (photo courtesy of this site).

Here is a blurb from the One Day For AIDS website that explains a little more...

One Day For AIDS (ODFA) is a challenge to YOU to give ONE DAY to HIV/AIDS relief worldwide. Would you consider giving one day's pay, or half a day's pay, or one hour's pay to AIDS relief through one of three partner organizations [Doctors Without Borders, Mennonite Central Committee, or Serving in Mission]? Or would you consider giving one day's time by raising awareness, volunteering to care for people living with HIV/AIDS, or becoming an advocate? ...

Why One Day For AIDS?
It is easy to become overwhelmed by the statistics. What is another million people infected with HIV/AIDS when there are already over forty million people? Instead of shrugging it off, One Day For AIDS is a personal invitation to step up and make a difference. It's a simple concept. Could you give ONE DAY to give someone living with HIV/AIDS hope?

ODFA is about turning ordinary people into agents of positive change for this world and giving hope to people who need it most.

Since I'm on strike right now, I can't give one day's salary, but I wil be giving one day of my time. Join me!

Click on the logo to be directed to the One Day For AIDS website. While this is based in Vancouver, there is no reason you couldn't volunteer or donate wherever you are. If you do, let me know! I would love to hear about how far this campaign could spread!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

To the tune of the Gilligan's Island Theme Song...

Just sit right back and you'll hear a tale,
A tale of a beastmobile
That started whilst driving to school,
I thought I'd lost a wheel
The hub cap popped and it rolled away,
Right into a very big ditch
The second one's gone and so's the third,
The fourth one I should pitch

I rev it once, I rev it twice,
And then I rev some more
When suddenly with a great big thunk,
It's on the road once more
Smoke from the hood as the oil leaks,
The engine light goes on
But it's ok, it always does,
Soon it will be gone

Electric windows they still work,
But not the passenger side
I control the windows though,
The other switches are fried
Cruise control, A/C long gone,
But the vent still does the trick
Don't keep it on for too long, though,
The fumes will make you sick

My dear old Cutlas beastmobile,
You still run, it's true
You've got character, they say,
I know we're not through
I'll drive you to the bitter end,
I'll be good to you
Please be good to me old girl,
I can't afford to fix you.
I can't afford to fix you!

Back to the contest

What does Hillary need?

And round and round and round we go...

Sean in Livonia, Michigan gave this to Tim in Philadelphia, Pensilvania, who gave this to Heather in Denver, Colorado, who gave this Kristi in Colorado, who gave this to Amy in ??? USA, who gave this to Marla in Toronto, Ontario who gave this to Andrea in Ottawa, Ontario, who gave it to me!

Go to Google. Type, "(Your name) needs". Yes, in quotes, so it looks like this "Hillary needs". But with your name, not mine, unless you really want to look through the same pages I did (darn that sharing a name with Hillary Clinton! I had to wade through all the "Hillary needs to separate with Bill" crap, and even still most of these are about the Clintster. Rar.)

Choose your ten favourites and share them with the world, who really, really, REALLY wants to know. Or share them with my comment feature. Either one.

1. Hillary needs fat in her face. (Um, how about not?)
2. Hillary needs a glass of water. (Yes she does.)
3. Hillary needs to learn to let go. (Hmm...)
4. Hillary needs to find something to sell, give away, throw out or burn. (Purge! Purge!)
5. Hillary needs a June Cleaver makeover. (Makeover, yes. June Cleaver, I think not. See #9)
6. Hillary needs no introduction. (This is what I've been trying to say, people!)
7. Hillary needs to do te folowing to improove her speling skilz. (Hardy har har.)
8. Hillary needs to do her job. (Hmmm... that one's a little too close to home! I wish I could.)
9. Hillary needs to get mad, get sassy. (Yeah baby!)
10. Hillary needs every cent she can get. (Donations, anyone?)

Monday, October 10, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving!

I feel like I've been in a funk for a year. I'm tired of feeling this way. Sometimes when you're looking too closely at your problems or the things that don't quite seem right in your life, you can miss the big picture. It's time to lift my eyes up off of myself and get a change in perspective...

* Jesus Christ * fall leaves crunching underfoot * Nana, who has prayed for me every single day of my life * the chance to see some of the most magestic sights I've ever seen this summer * beginning a solid career at age 24 * those trees whose leaves turn colours from the inside out, leaving red leaves on the outside, yellow in the middle, and green closest to the trunk * having friends I know I can rely on when things are tough * oreo ice cream * my parents' example of a solid, lasting marriage * finally beginning to be friends with my sister * puffy white clouds against blue sky * country music that makes me cry because it reminds me of what's important * wonderful, friendly, caring landlords * the means to meet every need I have and more * my car (yes, MY car) which gets me where I need to go. Usually. * grace * living in Vancouver * having a life free of major disaster or pain * my pompom socks, which remind me of my best friend * hugs from kids * the experience of having loved * being raised in a Christian home * the chance to have gone to university * a wonderful roommate experience * a friend who is always able to talk sense into me * some painful experiences over the last year * a God who will never leave me * my suite * a church home that encourages me to be who I am, the good, the bad, and the sometimes ugly * I am safe and warm at night * laughter * the night sky * memories * Camp Kawkawa * the touch of a friend's hand on my arm * joy * the security of knowing my parents will always be there for me, no matter what * the ocean * my dog * freedom * a season of searching * gerbera daisies * God's faithfulness * wind that whips my hair around my face * music * chocolate * not getting what I think I want sometimes * sunshine * second (and third, and fourth, and fifth... ) chances * being able to be myself * the constant struggle to figure out who I am *

My life, just as it is
where I have come from
the road I am pointed towards
the joy I feel when I remember all I have been given
the hurt and longing and confusion that comes with living
waking up every morning
to the knowledge that I am safe
in the hands of the creator of the universe
and that this same God
knows me deeply and personally... ME!
My life, just as it is...

For all these things and infinitely more, I am thankful.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Ak! Help!

So about half of my sidebar has decided to relocate the the veeeery bottom of the page, blow all my posts. Apparently it still looks fine in Mozilla, but on Explorer it's all wonky. I can't fix it! Any suggestions?

(what?!?! Hillary writes a post under a thousand words??? What has this world come to??? Yeah yeah, so my last few posts have been kinda long... hopefullythat hasn't scared you all away! ;)

Saturday, October 08, 2005

And now for something completely different...

So this is how non-political I am: I'm even uncomfortable with that giant post I wrote yesterday even being on my blog. I was considering moving it to my other webpage and just linking to it. But I wrote it, it's there, so there it will stay. Unless I change my mind. Anyway, I said this would be different...

This past week has been both hard and interesting. Cathy left on Monday after staying with me for two months. Her practicum was over and she has two weeks to spend visiting friends and relatives in Edmonton and Winnepeg, then she goes back home to Australia. It was so great to have her here. We hung out all the time (and with my friends Dave and Jordan, we made quite the foursome!) and it was neat to have a roommate experience. Other than living with my aunt and uncle and cousins for eight months in northern BC (Mackenzie, to be exact, a town so small mapquest doesn't recognize it), I've only lived on my own.

I've always enjoyed living on my own, definitely not because I like to have lots of "on my own" time. I am a person who needs to be around people. But living on my own, I can do what I want - host a Bible study or dinner party without checking with anyone first, rearrange the furniture (not that I've done that, but hey, I could if I wanted to!), leave a mess (err... I neeever do that...), or be alone if I want. It the "it's my house and I get to do what I want" idea. However, because there is not someone else at home, I am often having people over - I love to host, talking on the phone - I love to talk, or talking to people on messenger. I need that connection with other people.

And honestly, in the past few months, I had been feeling a little fed up with living on my own. If my landlords weren't so great, I didn't like my place so much and I didn't really know my neighbours, I would consider moving and maybe finding a roommate. It would certainly be nice to share the burden of rent! But I don't really know anyone who I'd like to live with who is also looking for a roommate, and I really don't want to leave the good thing I've got here (even if the silly patio posts are BLUE. Rar.). It's jsut that sometimes it was geting me down living alone.

Also, a few months before Cathy came to stay with me, I was wondering if the "It' my house I'll do what I want" thing was promoting self-centeredness. I don't have to have consideration for anyone else at home. While sometimes it's good to be able to have the freedom to do what we want, I think too much of that could end up to be a bad thing. So when Cathy talked about coming, I was worried about that on two levels. First, on a more selfish level, I wondered if I would not enjoy having to share my space with someone else, and if I would resent having to check with someone else before I had people over or made plans. That was only a small concern, though. The second concern was that *I* would drive *her* crazy. Also, I wanted her to feel like this was her home, too, not that she was jsut a guest and should feel like she had to ask before she did anything.

It turned out I had nothing to worry about. Or at least, if I drove her crazy, she hid it well! ;) Even though it was tight quarters, I actually really enjoyed having someone else around. It certainly didn't hurt that it was someone as fun as Cathy! I didn't mind sharing my space at all, and it turned out checking with her was kind of a non issue most of the time because we'd just always hang out together (she didn't know anyone really when she came, so my friends jsut became her friends). And, she felt totally at home here, which made me really happy.

So when it came time for her to leave, I started to wonder how I'd be feeling about gonig back to being on my own again. It was kind of getting to me before, so would it be all the more obvious that I live alone after having the contrast of having a roommate?

Cathy left to catch her flight after I went to work on Monday, so when I went to work, she and all her stuff were still there. Packed up, but still there. When I got home from work, my place looked really empty! She had even taken off the sheets and folded up the quilt on her bed. Sigh. I was very obviously back to living on my own again.

That combined with work being exhausting this week and all this ugly strike stuff, it's been a rough week. Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday all I did when I got home was check email, read a few blogs, and flop in front of the tube, only to fall alseep there and wake up the next morning with a crick in my neck and a bigger mess around the house than there was the day before (those mess-making trolls... they must come at night and wreak havoc. There's no way *I* could let things get so messy. Not me, no sir.). I couldn't even hack Bible Study on Wedensday. I never skip out of that unless I'm out of town, which is hardly ever.

So it's been interesting to say the least. It's the long weekend now, though, and I'm going to be well fed (three Thanksgiving dinners in a row, and Dave and Jordan had me over for dinner last night) and hopefully well rested. It looks like I"ll still have some free time next week, cuase I don't think this teacher's strike is going to be resolved soon.

I jsut hope this feeling of sheer exhaustion and mild depression goes away soon. I want to be back to Happy-Go-Lucky-Hillary again. Maybe it's time for a walk through all those crunchy fall leaves to cheer me up.

Friday, October 07, 2005

OK, so here's the thing...

Whenever I come across a blog where people are spouting their political views, I usually move along quite quickly. I'm just not interested in political ranting and raving. Now that every teacher in BC is out in strike, I'm interested in what people have to say about it, and I'm actually going to - *gasp!* - write about something that's quite politically controversial, mostly for me to get my head around all the issues and numbers and statistics that have been flying around lately. If you're interested in what's going on, read on. Please comment, whatever side you're on (just don't be nasty!). I'd be interested to know what people's views are on this icky situation.

If you're not interested, scroll on down and enjoy the rest of my blog!

The Strike Plan

Initially, teachers had a plan of escalating action. September 27 marked the beginning of phase one, which was to last two weeks and involved the withdrawal of supervision duties and administrative paperwork (handing out notices, collecting school fees, etc). Phase two was to be two weeks of rotating strikes where any given school district in the province would only be out one day per week. Finally, if nothing was resolved by October 24, phase three involved a full scale walkout.

That plan was quickly changed when the government passed Bill 12, which imposed a contract and essentially made any job action illegal. However, Bill 12 once again did absolutely nothing to address any of the concerns that teachers wanted to discuss at the bargaining table. It was an insult to teachers, who are already tired of the government's clear stance against teachers. (For example, in 2003 the government changed the BC College of Teachers to be comprised of only government appointed representatives. Like every other profession in BC, teachers used to be self-governed. With the backing of the courts, we withheld college fees until a change was made.) In emergency meetings earlier this week, teachers voted 90.5% in favour of walking off the job starting today, regardless of any back to work legislation that will be or has been passed. Teachers are not going back to work until we have negotiated some kind of contract and all members have voted to return to work. This is more a political protest now than a strike, and it could mean heavy fines and possibly even jail time for union leaders or even individual members. There's even talk of a provincial general strike. It's big.

This being said, striking is NOT what teachers want to be doing. Kids need to be in school. It's a huge inconvenience for parents, especially lower income families. And teachers are of course not being paid while they're not working. But in the grand scheme of things, no matter what people say, this is for the long range benefit of students. It's so hard to see that when it's such an uncomfortable situation in the here and now.
The Issues

There is a great document on the BC Teachers Federation website that gives a summary of the context of this strike. That is where I got a lot of this information.

Issue # 1: A collective agreement that protects working and learning conditions .
In 2002, the government tore up teachers' legally binding negotiated contract. The biggest thing that was removed was guarantees on working and learning conditions, meaning things like the elimination of class size limits and guarantees for support for kids with special needs and English as a Second Language. Teachers had spent the last ten years bargaining and accepting smaller or no salary increases because they believed that learning conditions were more important, and *POOF!* all of that went down the tube. The public education system has been deteriorating ever since, and even universities now are seeing the difference in first year university students who have been affected by these changes. With no guarantees on working and learning conditions, here are only four examples of the deterioration of education in Vancouver alone:

* At my school, there is a grade 7 class at my school with SEVEN ministry designated kids in it (ie. special needs). There is no support worker. The teacher is on her own, trying to meet the highly individual needs of these kids AND provide a quality education to the other 23 kids in her class.
* Also at my school, there is a boy in grade 1 who has a ministry designation and should have been receiving support from day one of this school year. Everything was in place last year and was ready to go. His teacher has been fighting for a support worker for a month and still has not received one, because the workers are assigned to other students who need more support time than they have been funded for.
* There are classes in Vancouver that have 46 students in them because class size limitations now are only based on a district average. These classes are trying to operate in classrooms built for 28, which used to be the limit.
* Or how about the special class for kids with severe behaviour disorders at a Vancouver high school? It used to have a limit of 12, with a flexibility factor that could go up to 15, and there was a full time, specially trained support worker and a full time youth worker assigned to that class. Now some poor relatively new teacher 'teaches' this class of twenty three students with only a part time education assistant.

The contract that the government ripped up would have prevented every one of these situations. And to top it all off, the government then made it illegal to bargain for those working and learning conditions back. This leads into the second issue in this strike.

Issue #2: The restoration of bargaining rights.
Teachers want the right to be able to bargain for working and learning conditions, which is currently illegal to do. This has become the most important issue now with the introduction of Bill 12, which essentially imposes a contract by extending the current imposed contract till June 2006, thus ordering teachers back to work, and says, "There. Now everything is all better." (If you read it, check out section 3 that basically negates the Labour Relations Code. Nice. Or the explanatory note at the bottom. Laughable!) Even before Bill 12, the second issue at the bargaining table was the reinstatement of bargaining rights. In a democratic society, people have the right to bargain for the conditions of their employment. Since 1993, teachers have not had a negotiated contract. Rather, successive governments have imposed contract after contract. This time round, after 18 months of bargaining, the government will not budge at all on any issue brought forward. It's clear that they are not going to bargain, and teachers are sort of up against a wall. Bill 12 came out only three days into the first phase of job action, which only involved withdrawal of supervision and administrative paperwork. It was an extremely heavy handed move. The government is not willing to talk, and just hides behind legislation. Teachers just want to be able to negotiate a contract. I've seen signs all over that say "Communicate, don't Legislate," which pretty much sums up the feeling.

Issue #3: A fair and equitable salary increase.
Yes, the third issue is about money. For some reason, any time a teacher mentions salary in negotiations, it takes precedence and everyone goes, "Oh, they just want more money. Those greedy teachers." Snarky remarks about summers "off" come up (by the way, our paychecks also get a two month vacation), as well as all kinds of other nasty things. But the fact is, in the last ten years, teacher's salaries have only increased by an average of 1% per year, which is not even enough to reflect inflation. Members of Parliament's salaries have increased an average of 3.6% per year over ten years. To break it down, from 1996 to 2001, teachers received a total of a 3.2% increase. From 2001 to 2004, the government allowed teachers an increase of 2.5% per year for three years, BUT only provided funding for the first year. This meant that school districts had to make up the difference. How did they do that? Close schools, raise class size limits (remember? There aren't limits on class sizes anymore), and lay off teachers. Some schools have even gone to four day weeks or nine day fortnights because there isn't enough funding to operate five days a week. Any increase to salary has come at a huge cost to kids. This should not be the case. Teachers are asking for a fair and equitable increase in salary that would bring BC teachers salaries closer in line with negotiated salaries in Alberta and Ontario and would help meett he rising cost of living. The government has had a strict zero zero zero policy for workers in the public sector, yet they have just given billions of dollars in tax breaks to corporations and are boasting a 1.5 billion dollar surplus this year. Yet they keep saying "No, no no."

The way the governement has gone about "union busting" in this province, teachers have many unions behind us. There are tons of public sector contracts that are coming due for re-negotiating in the spring, and they are not going to settle for zero zero zero either. This srtike could get very big very fast if other unions decide to stand up with teachers and protest the way the government is dealing with contracts. I wouldn't be surprised if there was a provincial general strike on October 17, the day of a massive labour rally at hte parliament buildings in Victoria.

Personally, I feel like this strike/political protest is a necessary action. Teachers just don't have a choice when faced with a government that tears up contracts, won't negotiate, ignores UN International Labour Organization recommendations, and legislates away Supreme Court rulings saying that what they are doing is wrong. Ha ha, believe it or not, I'm NOT an extreme "Rah Rah Union" person, but this situation is really bad.

And so off I go for picket duty, hoping things are resolved quickly so I can just get back to doing my job.


Water the plants and bring the hamster home. This is it.
~ On the homepage of the Vancouver Elementary School Teachers Association yesterday, the day before a full scale BC wide teacher walkout

Thursday, October 06, 2005

It's official

Ninety point five percent. That's the percentage of BC teachers who voted for strike action starting tomorrow. This is big. Big big big. Teachers are not going back to work until there's a settlement reached. With this government, I could be off work for quite some time. And what if they legislate us back to work? Well we were already doing a very minimalist job action (no supervision, not handing out notices from administration), and they already DID legislate us back. There was a big emergency meeting last night to vote about going out in protest anyway. That's what 90.5% of teachers voted for. There's even talk of a possible one day provincial general strike. This is getting nasty, but there's not really any choice.

I'm not really terribly political, but I'm behind the strike for sure. I'll explain tomorrow what's been going on (mostly to get it straight in my own head) and why such a drastic action has been taken. Right after picket duty.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005


Ok, I have to rant. My house (well, the house I rent a suite in!) is being painted, and overall, it looks pretty good. It's grey with blue trim now, as opposed to beige with green trim. I really liked the green, I've discovered, now that it's royal blue, but oh well.

But today when I got home from work (dodging paint cans and lumber and sawhorses and trailing bushes that have been taken off the house and are now mostly obstructing the walkway to my door - at least that's not permanent) the painter was painting the once beige posts of the balcony BRIGHT BLUE! The garage that I look at is green and is staying green. The yard, which I also look at, is gorgeous - grass and oodles of flowers in the summer and trees down the side. Green, beige, and garden.... it was all very natural looking. Even my patio furniture fit in. Now it's green, garden, and ROYAL BLUE. ICK!!! And what's up with the blue stripe around my door ? (see photos below) French doors... aren't they by definition white? He WAS going to paint the whole door blue, but luckily I was able to ask that it stay white before that happened. I'm all for the bright red door style on the front of a house, but not on a french door. Come on.
I can't really say anything now, the deed is done. I guess I'll just have to suck it up. But those blue posts are really quite gross.

Maybe a can on beige paint will mysteriously spill down the balcony posts. Crap.



(I told the painter I was taking comparison shots, and he asked to be in a photo. "What? You're not gong to take one with the guy who can take credit for all of this?" Sure, buddy. Fill your boots.)

Saturday, October 01, 2005

What was I THINKING???

Oh wow. I'm shaking my head in disbelief. I actually WORE that?

In an extremely ironic co-incidence, just after all this "gunky teen" talk, my mom dropped off a bag of old clothes that she had come accross while re-organizing the attic. It was all stuff I wore as a teenager, mostly in junior high. How fitting.

It wasn't so much the style of the clothes that shocked me (though there WAS some pretty funny stuff) but the size. I could fit two of me in most of my shirts! I was heavier in high school, and apparently to cover it up I decided to wear really baggy clothes.

Stacy and Clinton of What Not To Wear would have been mortified! (Hey, maybe I can start wearing the stuff again, just long enough to be reported and get five grand - american! - for a whole new wardrobe! Sweet!)

I'm not kidding you, these clothes are truly mu-mu-esque. Sheesh!

Before and After!