Saturday, January 31, 2004

My latest oenological foray is Hippo Creek Sauvignon Blanc. It's very light and friendly and unassuming. With the understanding that I have no knowledge of the proper adjectives with which to describe wine, I'd describe it as fresh and bright. It doesn't seem to clash with anything and has no aspects of unpleasantness that I noticed. The taste of alcohol is less noticeable than usual, so it's almost refreshing. The only problem is that it is very easy to drink much more quickly than you originally intend.
White coat bolts straight away, without making eye contact, and flees in horror to the embrace of the rest of her pack several metres away. Tan jacket stands her ground with the boys, a hostile look on her face. So what is it with teens today, they're asked.

Delivered by one of the boys, the brush-off is immediate and absolute. "We're kind of busy," he says, with a hard look on his face. Then he turns his back.

When Gordon Neufeld hears this story a few days later, he laughs. An experienced clinical psychologist in Vancouver, he recognizes the symptoms all too well. This is a sign of what he calls "peer-orientation" or "peer-attachment disorder," which he contends is a modern blight responsible for today's dangerous teen landscape and getting worse all the time.

So Dr. Neufeld, picture this: you're idly relaxing with your friends one Saturday on your usual stomping grounds, not bothering anyone, when some stranger you've never seen before in your life comes up to you out of nowhere and demands you justify your behaviour, adding that whatever response you happen to be able to think up on the spot will be published and used to judge your entire peer group.

WTF would you do?
So apparently Stelco might lay off everyone with under 25 years of seniority. I wonder if they've considered the fact that, after they do this, their entire remaining workforce will be eligible for retirement probably within 5 years, definitely within 10.

Or perhaps they don't intend to be around that long?
I had a dream where I was time travelling through ancient China (which is strange because IRL I know NOTHING about ancient China) and I was accompanied by this old woman whose mission was to teach me about the dangers of time travel.

I then had a dream where I was in middle school for some reason. I woke up, glad that I'm no longer in middle school because the feeling of perpetual confusion is gone. I never realized it before, but the greatest characteristic of middle school for me was a feeling of perpetual confusion.

Friday, January 30, 2004

Things you can't utter in the 21st century and still be taken seriously: "...through the magic of special effects."
Anyone know how to get voicemail on a residential phone line to tell you (by which I mean verbally since I don't have a display-capable phone) the name and/or phone number of whoever just called?

I know that the voicemail "knows" this information, because if you save a message and wait a week and then log back into your voicemail it will tell you "The following message will be deleted. Message from: [name or phone number], saved Tuesday at 11:43 a.m." But is there any way to get it to cough up this information when the message is new?

Thursday, January 29, 2004

So I recently finished reading The Pythons, which, as you might guess, is an autobiography of Monty Python and the members thereof. I think they interviewed all the surviving Pythons (plus Graham Chapman's partner, brother, and sister-in-law, with blanks filled in by previous interviews with Graham) and just compiled the results. It's terribly interesting to see how their memories of various distant events differed! On the whole it's quite a good read, although it would probably be very dull for a non-Python-fan. They discussed in great detail the creation and development of their work, so there's a lot more insight to the process than in previous interviews and books. The book is also full of colour pictures, old letters, cartoons, etc.

The only problem is that the book is freaking HUGE! It's only 200-300 pages, but it's a large, full colour, coffee-table-sized book, about 10"x12"! So you can't read this on the train or at the dinner table! Because of its size and the fact that every page is full colour it is probably atrociously expensive, but it's worth getting from the library. Just bring your schoolbag to get it home in!
Enlightenment from the shower: My lack of confidence in my French is due to the way I speak English. Ideas in English never occur to me in simple language; they come to me fully formed with idioms and metaphors and circumlocuction and ironic understatement. Because I learned French as an academic subject with one-to-one equivalent vocabulary, my French isn't nearly as rich.

When I'm writing, I have time to think and reduce my English ideas to something simpler that I can render in French, but when I'm speaking I don't have time to do this. The result is a total lack of confidence in my French because I can't instantly render the unnecessarily complex English thoughts that pop into my head.
I had a dream where I had paid someone to drill a hole in a piece of wood for me, but they drilled three holes instead, thus ruining it. Then my father came along and started giving me this lecture about how spoiled and ungrateful I am because I got three holes for the price of one.

Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Lately I've been attempting to expand my reading horizons by reading books recommended by Salon. I'm doing this because I'm simply not going to read enough of a variety if I don't follow someone's recommendations, and the bestseller lists tell me what's most prominently placed in Indigo, not what I should be reading.

The only problem with Salon is it's American, so the books it recommends are rather centred in the American experience. I don't mind reading American per se, but I just looked at my "to read" pile, and I've got 4 books set in the US and one set in various places around the world (I also have 5 books to read in 3 weeks while working full-time, but I digress). That's a bit too highly concentrated.

So what I'm looking for is a book list similar to Salon's "What to read this month", but with either a Canadian or a global English-language perspective. Book reviews in the daily newspapers don't do it for me because they either review only potential bestsellers, or absolutely everything that's released that week. And I don't want something that pushes Canlit for the sake of pushing Canlit. Just a well-rounded, not completely US-centric list of the most interesting new books released during that week or month or whatever. Preferably with a number of books on the list that a person could reasonably read in that time period, but I can cull if necessary.

Suggestions?
If anyone cares, I'm working from home for the rest of the day. We got to go home early. YAY!

I can't see past the edge of my balcony. This is a sexy storm!

Monday, January 26, 2004

Networks don't swear for artistic integrity; they do it because it draws more paying customers.

Huh? With the exception of a few preteens, who watches TV because they contain profanity? And I'm sure preteens aren't their target audience since TV networks are always wetting themselves over the "18-49" market (another concept I've never understood - at one time that market segment contained both me and my parents). Anyone who is immature enough to watch a TV show just so they can hear a few swear words won't have any say over which channels their household subscribes to. I'm sure advertisers would prefer that the shows didn't swear - at any rate, they certainly wouldn't be more inclined to sponsor a show because it contains profanity. So who out there does the letter-writer suggest is paying money for the main purpose of hearing profanity?

Shows that contain profanity might draw more paying customers because they tend to be more willing to deal with adult or subversive topics than fluffy mainstream pablum network show are, but profanity isn't what makes people watch TV shows!
I'm dreading going to work today, and I have no idea why. Maybe because it's snowing, and when it's snowing the nicest thing to do is stay home under the covers with a cup of tea and a good book. I could call in, but I was hoping to take Friday off anyway and my long weekend will feel so much nicer if I manage to hold out through the week.

Sunday, January 25, 2004

Note to self: Yellowtail chardonnay is a touch too acidic for your tastes, although it might work better with cheese. Also it has one of those stupid fake corks. What's up with fake corks in Australian wines? Do they not have real corks in Australia?

(And for the bystanders who are reading this despite the fact that it's a note to self, no, I did not sample the wine just now at 11 am. I had it last night but it just occurred to me to record my observations now.)
I don't care what anyone says, the final episode of MASH contains the Best Marriage Proposal Ever!

(Don't worry mi cielito, that doesn't mean I want you to become a tranny just for the purposes of duplicating it)

Saturday, January 24, 2004

In MASH, the walls of the Swamp are made of mosquito netting so you can see through them, but the walls of all the other tents are made of opaque canvas. I wonder why they chose to do that? The see-through walls are sometimes used for plot purposes, but they're hardly necessary. Nothing that couldn't be worked around with a window or the fact that canvas is easy to hear through.

Friday, January 23, 2004

A quick poll for anyone reading this: To what extent did you have to ask your parents, or other grownups in your life, for help with homework when you were in elementary or high school?

I ask because I've just encountered another of those omnipresent articles about how parents are so stressed out these days because they had to help their kids with homework.

I had my mother help me with math because she used to be a high school math teacher; if she hadn't been a math teacher I wouldn't have asked for her help (although in high school I might have instead asked for help from certain cute geeky boys). I got some help with logistics/buying materials for really big projects, although I conceived the projects myself; I did most of the work myself, but sometimes a grownup would help me by showing me how to do something for the first time. And once in grade 4 I had to draw a picture of my house for French class for a stupid project, so my mother helped by drawing a couple of pieces of furniture in each room. I could have used help with English, but none of the grownups in my life were good at English.

At any rate, I did get help sometimes and there might have been stress around math exams when I gave my mother the assignment of correcting all my practice tests, but I can't recall ever having a homework load that would have caused constant parental stress. And I'm pondering whether it's the difficulty/extent of today's homework, or a culture where parents feel more obligated to be involved in every aspect of their children's education, or a culture where kids are encouraged to be more dependent on their parents, or what?

Anyway, how was your homework in elementary and secondary school?
I don't want to become one of those people who blogs extensively about her get-in-shape efforts, but I'm very proud of myself because:

a) I exercised for the last SIX days in a row (Sun, Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri),
b) I ate breakfast EVERY day this month with the possible exception of one or two that I don't remember because I was sick (still doing spaghetti for breakfast, which is working out well), and
c)I only ate ONE serving of potato chips, and they were Lays Salt & Vinegar and I'm on my period so it's perfectly justified. And if you don't believe me on this, you try living through one of my periods, especially with messed-up post-antibiotic hormones, without Lays Salt & Vinegar chips. (But I can't promise that I won't have more tonight if I'm still hungry after having fruit and salad and a PMS sandwich).
I wonder what would happen if Google suddenly became a really bad search engine? Like Ask Jeeves used to be good about five or six years ago, but then it became shitty and totally ineffective. What if that happened to Google? I find that, both with personal and professional research, I take Google as a definitive indication of What's Out There. If I can't find what I'm looking for in Google, I don't hesitate to say "I can find no evidence that it exists." If it suddenly became bad, how long would it take us to notice? Would everyone in the world be floating for days around thinking there's no existing information on the topic they're looking for until everyone compared notes and suddenly realized that Google sucked? Would it take a really long time to notice and all of humanity just wanders around being ignorant because they can't find the info they're looking for?

Thursday, January 22, 2004

I was watching on TV where a lady was having a baby, and there was a point in the process where she felt like pushing but wasn't allowed to. And apparently this is normal.

What kind of a stupid instinct is that? And if pushing when you feel like it messes up the birth process, how did the human race ever survive this far?
I haven't read her CV so I can't tell you this authoritatively, but it does occur to me that leader of the Conservative party might be the first job that Belinda Stronach has ever had to go through an application process for.
I left work at the usual time today, and when I came out of the subway it was still what you could rightfully call light out! YAY!!!!!!!

Also, because this is the first day of the year of the monkey, we should get to call it Monkey Day. Happy Monkey Day everyone!

Wednesday, January 21, 2004

The problem with the Vandendool is that Harmony contains many rules, but this book doesn't prioritize them. So I know you're supposed to raise the leading note to the tonic, I know you're supposed to move the soprano voice in the opposite direction of the bass voice, and I know you're supposed to move each note to the nearest neighbour. But in some examples you can't do all three. So which is most important? Perhaps this is why they don't recommend doing the Conservatory exams without a teacher.

Tuesday, January 20, 2004

I had a bizarre dream. I can't remember much of it, and what I can remember is just too bizarre to explain, but this is normal for my dreams. The weird part was that in the dream we kept doing retakes of various scenes, as though we were shooting a movie. And I really can't tell if it was a lucid dream and I was making us do retakes because I thought I could do better, or if there was a director off somewhere making us do retakes.

Monday, January 19, 2004

Good day today. Did yoga this morning and I was more flexible than usual (which still doesn't meet the basic human standard of "flexible", but it was a bit better than normal). Lots of good stretching and my joints kept cracking and popping while I was stretching, which I'm sure sounds gross but feels SO GOOD!

Actually got out of the house at 8:35 instead of my usual 8:45, so I was actually on time for work. I would have been early if I hadn't had to wait seven minutes for a subway. Seven minutes! During morning rush hour! (For those who don't understand what I'm bitching about, trains are supposed to be every 1-2 minutes during rush hour, so it isn't a giant inconvenience but it is a 300% delay which makes for very crowded trains).

Work went by quickly and was very interesting, although it wasn't anything I can discuss here. I had a yummy lunch and found out that feta oregano dressing does in fact go with tzatziki. (Anyone know of any other dressings or sauces that go with tzatziki) Did some errands after work (Shopper's, dollar store, LCBO - didn't get carded YAY!) and still got home by 6.

Had a PMS sandwich for dinner and now I'm full, which is good. Did some Harmony while eating dinner. Yes, I've finally started studying Harmony instead of just talking about it. Unfortunately the RCM Theory Syllabus didn't specify exactly which books go with which levels, so I went to the RCM store and looked in the Harmony section. I couldn't tell which ones were for Intro, so I got the Vandendool "Basics of Harmony - a comprehensive introduction to harmony" because I'd heard of Vandendool and it had the words "basics" and "introduction" in the title. Turns out I should have read the preface more closely - it's for Grade 3. But that doesn't matter, various levels tend to reprise each other a bit and I've had no problem doing this so far with only a Grade 2 Rudiments background. I really enjoy Harmony - it uses the opposite part of my brain of what my job does, and it's like a puzzle: Make the notes fit together and still follow all these rules. When I get to Counterpoint (which should take a couple of years) maybe I'll buy a keyboard - just a small one, four octaves or so - so I can enjoy the fruits of my labour. Counterpoint is sexy! Don't know how my neighbours will feel about it though.

So it was a very nice productive day. Now I'm going to curl up with a book and a cup of tea and relaxinate.

Fun fact: When I was a small child, I knew there was a TV show called Golden Girls, but I had never seen it and didn't know what it was about. So in my head, a Golden Girl had to be a female action hero, like Wonder Woman or She-Ra. Then when I finally saw Golden Girls, I was sitting there wondering when it was going to get interesting.
I had some leftover shampagne, so I bought orange juice so I could make mimosas.

Then I had some leftover orange juice, so I bought peach schnapps so I could make fuzzy navels.

Then I had some leftover peach schnapps, so today I bought orange vodka so I could make fruity fuzzy martinis.

Anyone have ideas for good drinks involving orange vodka and not too many other ingredients?
What's up with the idea that if you don't worship a deity, then by default you either worship science or money/materialism? Or the broader concept that if a person isn't spiritual they must be materialistic? Are the concepts of:...

a) not worshipping anything at all,
b) being neither spiritual nor materialistic, or
c) being both spiritual and materialistic,

...really so difficult to wrap a brain around?


Sunday, January 18, 2004

The PMS sandwich:

2 slices of bread
An appropriate amount of nice salty cheese
A sliced hard-boiled egg
Twice the appropriate amount of pickles
Mustard to taste

Instructions: Toast bread, put ingredients together in the normal sandwich way

Saturday, January 17, 2004

What's up with the people who object to photo radar on the grounds that "They didn't mention it in their campaign platform"?

No, this issue was not mentioned in their campaign platform one way or the other. It wasn't brought up at all by any of the parties, probably because it wasn't in the public mind then. If it had been in the public mind at the time, voters and media would have asked candidates about it.

So why does this bother people so much? Don't they realize that you can't fit every issue in the world into a campaign platform? What do they expect the government to do when an issue comes up that wasn't an issue at the time of the campaign? Just ignore it until the next election, when they can put it in a campaign platform?
On TV there's a protest about the proposed French ban on headscarves. I didn't catch where the protest is, but it's very cold there, and everyone is all bundled up against the cold. Because they're all bundled up, it is very difficult to tell whether the protesters are wearing headscarves or not.

Friday, January 16, 2004

My personal learning plan:

1. Self-study music theory, starting with Introductory Harmony, until September. Continue after Sept. if desired
2. If I find a Polish class by Sept., study Polish. If not, start intermediate Spanish at U of T school of continuous learning.
3. After achieving enough fluency to make me happy in Polish or Spanish as the case may be, time to consider grad school again.
According to today's Social Studies: (third item down)

Recently, a 33-year-old man in Leeds, England, had heart-bypass surgery, during which part of a large leg vein had to be removed to replace a blocked artery in his chest. Before the operation, reports The Independent on Sunday, he had a tattoo on his leg which read "I love women." After his leg incision was sewed up, the tattoo read "I love men."

Thursday, January 15, 2004

Picture a jar full of milky liquid.

Now picture a glass of milk.

Except of a slight colour similarity, your milky liquid doesn't like a thing like milk, does it?

Tuesday, January 13, 2004

You know how you can't overfeed goldfish because they'll eat all available food and then explode and die? However do they survive in the wild?
Tales from the bathroom:

There are two stalls in our bathroom at worked: one standard and one handicapped. The toilet in the standard stall works normally. The toilet in the handicapped stall flushes funny. When you flush, the water rises perilously close to the brim before going down normally. Now I always use the standard stall unless it's occupied, both out of politeness and because the toilet flushes better. But it seems whenever I have to use the handicapped stall, the, um, errand for which I'm using the toilet ends up being messier and more unpleasant to look at. So when I flush and it starts rising perilously close to the top, the contents of this toilet are hardly ever clear water and a single piece of toilet paper, it's always a colourful, graphic and odourous assortment of various bodily by-products. So as the water level rises, I always have images of this mess spilling over onto the floor and I'm tempted to flee without washing my hand in order to preserve my shoes, if not my dignity. Of course it never overflows, but it's enough to make one panic slightly every time.

Tales from the subway:

When I'm sitting in a double or triple seat and someone comes along and sits in the seat next to me, I find I tend to shift my body so I'm more centred within my own personal space and impinging on the personal space of those around me as little as possible. However, I've noticed that even when I'm already optimally centred in my own seat, I still tend to lift myself slightly out of the seat and then settle back in my original position, so as to give the impression that I'm making sure I'm out of their way as much as possible. Anyone else do this?

Monday, January 12, 2004

I was a very good girl today. I did all the items on my neglected to-do list from yesterday, except buy drinking glasses because the dollar store had no normal (or oversized) wineglasses and no plain glass tumblers. Fairweather has no work-appropriate pants with pockets, but I did find a pair for $30 at another store. They gap a tiny bit in the back, but the gappy part leans towards my body instead of sticking out in the air, so they're better than the pants I'm wearing right now (that's what I get for shopping at the Gap!). I'm not saying where I got them because I might want a second pair if I decide I don't hate them too much and they don't have much in my size.

So I just realized why only Fran could answer my psych question (unless someone else has answered in the interim) and why I could hardly find anything on the internet: the disorder in question was from DSM-III, which they stopped using in 1994! But I found this very interesting website which describes DSM-IV in lay terms, with enough caveats to keep me from diagnosing myself with absolutely everything!

Sunday, January 11, 2004

If I were a tragic hero, my fatal flaw would be that I hate taking out my recycling. I try to recycle like a good girl, but I have to take it downstairs and outside and throw it in these big dumpsters. And it's cold and windy and I'm just getting over strep and my winter coat is too nice to be wearing when hanging around dumpsters. So my recycle box (which is really the box my microwave came in) is full with a week's worth of newspapers piled over the top of the box. I'm probably going to end up throwing a week's worth of papers in the garbage just to get rid of them. If I had a fireplace I'd make a fire and be done with it. (Aside: in my dream home, there would be a fireplace in the bathroom. Of course, in my dream home, the fireplace would be gas or something so it would turn on with the push of a button, and I wouldn't be able to burn newspapers in it.)

I just looked out the window and it looks foggy. Can it get foggy in the winter? Maybe it's a fine light snow, but I can't see any flacons de neige even with my glasses on. Very odd.

So my to-do list today:

1. Take out recycling and vacuum.
2. Do laundry.
3. Mend 2 shirts.
4. Get started on Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix to conclude my straight-through read of all the Harry Potters that I began when I first came down with strep, so that when my library books come in I can read those.

Things that I put on today's to-do list yesterday, that I've since mentally crossed off because I'm simply not going to get there:

1. Go to the bank and cash my GST cheque.
2. Go to Fairweather's and try on every single pair of black pants with pockets in the store.
3. Go to the dollar store to replace the drinking glasses I keep breaking by piling too much stuff in my dish drainer.
4. Go groceries.

I'm going to try to push those things over to tomorrow, although since I'm still aiming for an 8 pm weekday bedtime for the next few days to make sure I don't relapse into sickness, I don't know how well that's going to work.

But really I don't want to do any of this stuff. I just want to sit here in my bathrobe playing computer games until it gets dark and then change back into my jammies.

Perhaps my fatal flaw should be sloth...
I ordered every book on Salon's Best Books of 2003 list from the library. Going to forceably force myself to diversify my reading. I'm far too comfy re-reading Harry Potter and other books that I know I like.

And because it's midnight and I promised myself I'd go to bed early this weekend, goodnight.

Saturday, January 10, 2004

Ponderance of the moment: are there gay male gynaecologists?
As I went about tedious household chores today, I found myself wondering why the contestants in the Triwizard Tournament couldn't just Accio the golden egg.
Because someone reading this must have taken psych at some point:

Yesterday I stumbled upon something called "Imature Personalty Dis-order". After a bit of background reading from Google, I realized that it might apply to more people in my life than I care to admit. Then I found myself wondering: at what age, or at what stage in one's life, is one's personality supposed to become "mature"?

[this post has been edited to insert intentional misspellings]

Friday, January 09, 2004

It occurs to me that a great deal of social and public discourse in our society is based on the presupposition that sex is The Best Thing Ever. (and the corollary (sp?) that if sex isn't The Best Thing Ever there must be something wrong with your sexual methodology).

I wonder if this is a universal presupposition, or if other societies have different concepts of what constitutes The Best Thing Ever.

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

I had no voice today, so I could only talk in a whisper. And I noticed something strange. When I'd say, in a whisper, "I have no voice", other people would instinctively respond to me in a whisper.

Tuesday, January 06, 2004

I'd been wondering for a while why it takes so much training to be a pharmacist. All I ever see pharmacists do is dispense the number and type of pills written on the prescription. Why should that require so much study, beyond a 4 year degree and with such stringent entry requirements?

The other day I saw a pharmacist display actual knowledge for the first time. I said that I was allergic to erythromycin, and the medication history she gave me said that I'm allergic to macrolide antibiotics. So she must have known that erythromycin was a macrolide antibiotic (I didn't know this). First time I've ever seen a demonstration of medical knowledge on the part of a pharmacist.
I just woke up for some reason, and I wandered into the living room to find that my computer had frozen in the middle of rebooting. Problem: I don't remember rebooting my computer! GAH! Shit, I hope it isn't doing that sponteneous rebooting thing again! I'd better up my credit limit just in case, because it isn't under warranty, so if this one dies I have to get a new one.

I'm going to stay home sick again today. Badly need several more hours of bedrest, and I can't get that at work, now can I?

Sunday, January 04, 2004

I'm sick, I Have a fever, and I'm craving nachos. I don't think I've ever craved nachos before in my life.

Someone keeps calling and hanging up without leaving a message. Whoever that is, STOP IT! YOu're jsut waking me up!!!
Ear infection. Blerg. I'm going to go get antibiotics as soon as my hair dries. It's such a childish malady, an ear infection.

Saturday, January 03, 2004

The Star did a pair of articles on the generation gap between baby-boomer workers and my generation of workers. I don't have much to say on the content of the articles themselves, but they brought up a peeve that has been festering in the back of my mind.

In my family, none of the boomer generation were affected by the downsizing of the 90s. They're all well into their third decade of continuous secure employment, with respectable pay, benefits and pension, with retirement just around the corner. And yet these people are advocating left and right policies such as outsourcing and contract work, which will rob the next generation of workers of the opportunity to also enjoy secure employment. Mind, they all have at least one kid who will be entering the workforce within the next few years, and I'm sure they all had at least a passing glimmer of worry during the recession of the 90s, but for reasons I cannot fathom they are all vehemently opposed to any policy under which workers are paid a respectable salary with a modest raise every reasonable interval, with basic benefits, a pension, and some semblance of security. All I can say is WTF?
I feel like I'm coming down with something, but I still need to go grocery shopping. I have no food. And even if someone else could do groceries for me, I have no idea the name of the soup I want (I only know what the box looks like and that it's in the kosher section).

I sponteously spent $50 on Amazon the other day, and I don't even feel guilty about it. I bought the Princess Bride on DVD since I was having so much trouble finding it, and the Sims since my copy isn't entirely legal and kind of doesn't work any more. My copy wouldn't uninstall, so I had to clean it out of the registry by hand, which I don't really like doing but I managed to do successfully. Then when I finished I found out that there's a utility to do that (It's called something like SimEraser and it's on the Maxis website). But anyway, I got a DVD and a game which is technically 2 games for $50, so that's fair.

I just finished reading Ten Lost Years by Barry Broadfoot. For those who haven't read it, it's a collection of oral histories of people who lived through the Depression in the 1930s. It was very interesting, although sometimes I found myself wondering if the stories were a wee bit exaggerated, but the storytellers lost all credibility to me in the last chapter. In the last chapter, they were discussing the long-term effects the Depression had on them, and some of them were mentioning how shocked and appalled they were about how people "today" ("today" is 1973 when the book was written) were so casual about spending money. They cited a parent who buys her son something that costs $25 and doesn't consider it a big deal when that was a month's income in the Depression, or the fact that a lobster dinner costs $8 (1973!) which could feed a family for over a week during the Depression. But don't these people understand the concept of inflation? I presume that at the time of the storytelling they were still living as functional adults in everyday society, so wouldn't they be aware that the value of a dollar is different? The mother who spent $25 on her son wasn't spending a month's income on him, she was spending $25 on him. Don't the storytellers ever go shopping? Shouldn't they be aware of what stuff costs? This one little thing changed the storytellers in my eyes from people with interesting stories about a historical event to whiny bitchy old people who are all grumpy because things aren't exactly like they were when they were young.

Friday, January 02, 2004

FYI à tous: I will be screening my calls this weekend, so anyone who wants to call me should just leave a message and they'll be called back soon.

Thursday, January 01, 2004

Just realized I have to go to work tomorrow. GAH!

I was doing laundry today, and when I stripped my bed Boomer accidently got caught in the sheets and ended up in my hamper. Luckily I found him before he ended up in the washer, but then I had to proceed from the laundry room back up to my apartment carrying a stuffed aminal. And, of course, the one time I'm walking around the building carrying a stuffed aminal, about 14 people pile out of the elevator as I'm waiting to get in.

I also met a small child whose favourite toy was doors. That was interesting.