Sunday, February 28, 2010

Won't you let your red heart show?

So this is the big day: the last day of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics. And of course, what that means is that it's the "big" hockey game. You know, the one for men's gold, which because of an awesome save by Roberto Luongo will be between Canada and the US.

Last night I watch a lot of Olympics on TV. How could I not? There was a gold medal curling game, a gold medal in longtrack speedskating, a gold medal in snowboarding, and a bronze in 4-man bobsled. That brought our haul up to 25 medals, which is Canada's highest ever, and we have 13 gold, which is a tie for the most-ever at a Winter Olympics.

In between all the excitement, CTV showed a video-essay by a writer from the Globe and Mail. During the essay, they played Hey Rosetta!'s song "Red Heart", and I can't believe I had never connected this song, one of my favourites, to the Olympics before.

Because, I think it sums up why this Olympics were super-special: we showed our red hearts.

Canada is a country of very quiet patriotism. Most Canadians strongly love their country, but we don't show it like other countries do. But really, we all love our country. How could you not? The people are awesome, and I think our athletes are a great representation of this. How could you not be affected by the relationship between Alexandre Bilodeau and his brother? How could you not be proud of Joannie Rochette's skate? Or of Clara Hughes' last medal?

Obviously, Olympic athletes are not average Canadians, but I think their struggles and stories are just like anyone else's, but on a bigger stage. And we should celebrate our athletes, and celebrate all of ourselves for over-coming any hardships that we face.

Another thing I love about Canada is our multi-culturalism. We are the most successful example of multiculturalism in the world. We're all Canadians, but all cultures are welcome to keep their roots, and for the most part, we live together harmoniously and learn from each other.

I love living in Toronto, which apparently is the world's most multi-cultural city. My day to day existence totally shows this. Yesterday I went to a birthday party for my friend's daughter. The party was a mixture of all cultures, but since my friend is Filipina, her family was there, and there was awesome food too. My school has something like 40 different cultures represented in it. I've learned so much, and I love it.

The last, and silliest thing, that I love about Canada is how we party. When Jon Montgomery won his gold medal, and drank from a pitcher of beer while walking down the streets of Whistler, I'm sure every Canadian smiled. And how ridiculous is the tempest in the teapot about the women's hockey team celebrating on the ice? That looked like a lot of fun, and they deserved it.

Anyway, thank goodness for these Olympics for being such a great experience for our country, even for someone like me who used it as a chance to spend some quality time with her couch, and her cat.

And tonight's the big game, and I will watch it (as long as I can stand it), and I hope that we win, but regardless, the Olympics were a great success, and our athletes did an amazing job.

As did the rest of the country, especially all people on the streets of Vancouver, at letting their red hearts show.

Here's the song. It's awesome. Listen to it, and have fun watching the hockey game!

Friday, February 26, 2010

You gotta swim, don't let yourself sink.

Welcome to it's almost the weekend folks!

I've been doing a lot of Olympics watching the past few days, and I tell you, it's still rocking my world. So much so that I have to use one of Claire's favourite terms, win, to describe everything.

7-3 men's hockey game against the Russians. Win. Gold and Silver in women's bobsleigh. Win. Silver in short track women's relay. Win. Bronze in the 5 K by Clara Hughes. Win. Gold medal for the women's hockey team. Win. Bronze medal in figure skating by the amazing and strong Joannie Rochette. Win.

So much win. And still a few days to come.

And this weekend is offering up a lot of win too.

Tomorrow, I get to see my beloved Jack's Mannequin in concert with my pal Mathew. Yes, I am aware of their emo-y teenager appeal, but who can say no to a cute boy who wears Chucks and rocks the piano? And the songs are so sing alongable. And their shows are great. This will be Jack's show #2 for me, and I'm excited.

On Saturday, I have a birthday party for a one-year old which should be fun.

On Sunday, hopefully I'll be watching another gold-medal hockey game, and then I'm going out for dinner, maybe to one of my fave restaurants.

I'll leave you with a Jack's video. I know it's emo-y, but it's good for the soul to listen to a bit of emo, I believe. You really need to feed your inner teenager sometimes.

p.s. At the end of this video, there's all this falling glitter, and it makes me happy. I think this is why I'm a successful high school teacher; I can identify with their tastes. Well at least the tastes of the girls. As with the boys, they seem to like my humour, so it's all good. Actually, wait, I can identify with their tastes too. Today some of them were blasting "Zombie" by the Cranberries in the hall and I had to take care of that situation by telling that I felt like I had traveled back in time to my own high school.

p.p.s Rambling p.s. out. Happy weekend bloggers and readers!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

It's not yellow, it's golden.

I am so tired. I stayed up way too late last night watching ice dancing. But it was awesome, and the incredible Canadian duo won gold, so the tiredness was worth it.

Today was a really good day. I had an in-school workshop, so my exhaustion didn't hamper me too much. At one point, I was sitting there, and for some reason I touched my foot, and it felt weird. Somehow, there was a paper clip inside my stocking. How bizarre, how bizarre. Anyway, the paperclip stuck in my stocking made me laugh 'cuz it was just weird.

The stuff that made me happy was going for coffee with a friend, an email, the arrival of a textbook to help me teach my environmental science course, and a visit from another friend.

Also the fact that Canada didn't choke against Germany in men's hockey, and a gold medal win in women's ski-cross made me happy too. What am I going to do when these Olympics are over?

Sunday, February 21, 2010

And I got up in the ring because I had you there in my corner.

Well, now that I've had the Toronto-chapter 30th birthday party, my thirty-ness is completely official.

My party was really great, and I got to see a lot of old friends that I don't see very often, and I got to see a lot of friends that I do see very often, so it was great. The party was low-key, very chill, and just perfect. There were some calls for birthday shots, but I did too many of those last weekend. I am now officially off of white wine (thanks Scotland) and off of shots (thanks H*** sisters from St. Ratford). Last night I stuck with beer. It's safe.

Whenever I think about all of the awesome friends that I am blessed to have, I think about the lyrics to one of my favourite Sarah Harmer songs: "The Ring".

You thank me all the time
But now it’s my turn
Cause truly a word of gratitude so due
Can’t go unheard
And it made me feel better
To have you there in my corner
My eyes cast so low
My face could not have been
Drawn longer

I know you’ve been impressed
You’ve seen me at my best
But oh, how it hurts
When I can’t hide my worst
Well thank-you for carrying on
For playing with me and this song
It made me feel better
We sat it out like some passing bad weather

My mind was like kids' boxing gloves
The kind blown up with air
That are put away after play
And get limp just lying there
But you knew they’d fill up again
And you gave me your shoulder
And I got up in the ring
Because I had you there
In my corner
And I got up in the ring
Because I had you there
In my corner

Anyway, I'm glad that I've spent the past week getting time to catch up with a lot of friends because of my birthday, and I'm so thankful about all of my friendships and all of the wonderful people in my life.

Also, my iTunes bills for this year are gonna be paid off 'cuz of these people. Now I just need to find some good new albums to buy. Any suggestions?

Speaking of friends, I had a really nice Sunday. My friend Jolene, who is one of my high school friends, came up for the party, and crashed here, so we spent the morning/afternoon going for brunch, then doing some shopping, then having a sushi snack. Then, I had to come home and have a nap 'cuz I was exhausted. Old.

This evening, I am going to spend some time writing thank-yous to my awesome friends, while Olympic-ing out. I'm going to attempt to watch the hockey game, but if it gets tight, I might have to look away.

Speaking of Olympics, I have a total crush on our men's skeleton gold medalist, Jon Montgomery. Why? Well, first off, he's hilarious. During his post-medal interview, he said "get 'er done" multiple times, he chugged from a pitcher of beer, and then auctioned off the pitcher of beer (he's an auctioneer). Secondly, he is ripped. OMG. CTV frequently showed a shirtless picture of him, and usually I'm meh whatever, but all I could say is ooh-la-la. Then I read an interview where he said he hates that picture 'cuz he wasn't in his best shape then. Hmmm, can we get an updated pic please??? But anyway, I've found my crush of the games. And he's 30 too!

All right, TV is calling me. Pleasant Monday blog folks. Thanks for being in my corner.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Olympic Addiction

Well, it's happened. I'm addicted to watching the Olympics, as it usually happens every Olympics. It's weird because I watch absolutely no other sports ever. Ever.

Tonight I took in some speed-skating (silver medal, woo!), some snowboarding (wow to Shaun White), and some downhill skiing (with lots of spills). You gotta love how crazy these winter sports are.

Anyway, I did leave my house last night, but luckily I did catch Maelle Ricker's gold medal performance in snowboard cross. That was cool.

Last night, a friend treated me to show where a cabaret singer sang a bunch of Ben Folds songs. It was a really fun show and a nice treat. Also, it made me remember exactly what an awesome songwriter Ben Folds is. I've been listening to him a lot today.

But tonight was all about watching more TV than I have in one sitting for a long time. Rilo also seems to like watching the winter Olympics. She sits on a pillow beside me on the couch and watches the TV intently. She's such a little princess on her pillow. Just sitting on the couch isn't enough for her highness. Anyway, she seems to like figure skating, short track speed-skating, and half-pipe snowboarding the best.

This blog might get really boring until the Olympics are done, I warn you. Well, I do have my Toronto birthday party this weekend, so that will be fun. But seriously, other than that I'm totally cool with neglecting life and watching the Olympics. A lot of people dislike the Olympics, but I see them a fun two-week escape from real-life and I especially love that they are in Canada. I don't even really care how we do. I enjoy randomly cheering for other countries. Like Finland. Because of an old, dark, family joke, my family and I always cheer for Finland. I'd explain, but it is rather dark. But really, everyone should just cheer for Finland, that's all I'll say.

Anyway, yay Olympics! I'm already dreading the inevitable withdrawl.

Monday, February 15, 2010

I will be the same, but older.

Well, here it is: my first post written in my thirties. Today's the day. Wow.

I had a good weekend at home with some partying, and a lot of vegging and watching the Olympics. I am loving them.

I took the train back tonight, and just got in. As I was on the train, I listened to one of my fave albums ever: "Left & Leaving" by The Weakerthans. I got that album on my 21st birthday, when I was sick with strep throat. Anyway, listening to that album through made me happy because I can relate to it just as much as I did back then. It's aged well, and I think I've aged well.

Tomorrow will be a busy day: sushi lunch and then day at the spa with friends, and then dinner with Mathew. After that, I'll probably sit on the couch and enjoy the Olympics. It'll be a great day.

And since it's my bday, here's a video by my fave band for you to enjoy.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

But I'm thinking a lot.

Yay long weekend!! How I need needed you!

First off Friday was a pd day. I knit during the pd day, which has the side effect of turning me into a conversation piece.

As I was leaving school on Friday afternoon, it was sunny and beautiful. Sarah Harmer's "Weakened State" popped up on my iPod. It was a perfect song to walk to on such a nice day, but the lyrics reminded me of negative things that happened in my 20s and I'm glad that I'll be turning over a new leaf soon. No more weakened states for me. I hope.

Last night, I watched the Olympic ceremonies with the 'rents. I really enjoyed them and they made me proud to be Canadian. They show cased so much that I love about Canada: great music, multiculturalism, culture, great heroes, and working together. Go Canada!

Anyway, today I'm driving out to the country, to visit my pal Joanna, and tonight, I am going to party in Kitchener with some pals. I love fun times. To adapt some words from Ralph Wiggum, fun times are fun.

ps Becca T just updated her blog and the post made me smile.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

What's going to happen to...

...all of my old-school retro past-times like knitting and reading books now that I've got this silly iPhone?

I spent tonight installing apps like CBC Radio, the NFB, an Olympic guide, the Globe and Mail, Bejewelled, and Bubble Wrap. So addictive! Am I ever going to finish another book again? Or knit another pair of mittens?

And now I'm up past my bedtime again. Oh well. Tomorrow's sort of like a Friday to me. Friday's a PD day. And I always bring my knitting on PD days. I should get a good part of a mitten done.

Then on Friday, I'm off to St. Ratford to visit the 'rents, and party with some members of the Group of 9. I'm the youngest member of the Group of 9, and the rest of them seem to be more than ready to send me into the next decade of my life. I look forward to it.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

The future is unwieldy.

This is too funny. So funny that I'll post it even though it doesn't fit properly on my blog. (And yes, I chose the smallest size.)

This sketch reminded me of my dad. For some reason he thinks that I either lose or break everything. His first comment when I told him that I got an iPhone was "how long until you lose or break that thing?"

Seriously, I don't know where he gets the idea of me losing stuff. As a kid, I once thought that I lost $20 on a trip with the 'rents to Niagara Falls, but it turned out it was in my wallet the whole time. As for breaking stuff, again, I don't break a lot of stuff. When I was five I dropped my dad's walkman down the stairs, and it broke, but that's the only major thing I ever remember breaking. Well, except for the time I washed my iPod, but my dad doesn't know about that.

Apparently those two known incidents have branded me as a loser/breaker for life to my dad, and he assumes I'll lose my iPhone. When Rick Mercer says "are you always losing your smaller Apple products?" it makes me laugh and think of my dad. He would think the iSlab is a good product for me. Except that I'd break it.

Now that I've started to reminisce about my childhood, I might as well go on. The other night I was thinking about how much fun I had roaming around the neighbourhood as a kid. I grew up in a fairly small town, and I remember all of the neighbourhood kids having free reign and being allowed to ride our bikes around, go the playground by ourselves, and build forts in nearby fields. Kids don't get that kind of freedom these days, and it's such a shame. That's when I had the most fun, and looking back, it just seems like it's how childhood should be.

I wondered whether my parents were just negligent, but I always roamed free with all the kids in the neighbourhood, so it just wasn't my parents. Were your childhoods like that?

When I think about my childhood, I always think about writing. As an only child, I used to write a lot of stories since I had a lot of free time on my own. I wanted to be writer. I'm happy that I got into blogging; I honestly think that I wouldn't do any non-work writing if I didn't have this outlet.

I'd like to try my hand at writing some short stories. Maybe this summer... I'm also playing around with the idea of taking a creative writing course this summer. Summer would be ideal, because I'd have time to actually write, but it would limit my opportunity to travel. If I went on any sort of extended trip, I'd miss a class, and the ones I've been looking at work out to $80 a pop, so I wouldn't want to miss any. I could take it during the school year, but time is a huge factor.

I think if I was a writer, I would turn out being the typical Canadian writer. You know how that is: stories end up being dark and twisted. I get ideas by fictionalizing events from my real life.

For example, I remember when my best friend and I were hanging out in a tree in one of those fields mentioned above. We were doing whatever kids do, and these two dusty pick-up trucks drove into the field and the drivers, who were sinister-looking characters stepped out and started to survey the area. We were so sure that they were staring at us, and plotting our demise. I remember sitting as still as possible in that tree.

They were there for maybe five minutes, and then they drove off. We spent hours suggesting what kind of misdeeds they were up to. That's where the fictionalization comes in: I could write some sort of dark thing that happened in my story. Which is such stereotypical Canadian literature. But I am Canadian, so...

Anyway, here is a post that started with "ha-ha look at this Rick Mercer video" and ended up with me setting out to write some twisted stories based on small events from my carefree small town Ontario 80s childhood.

If I do say so myself, I love the way my mind works. It's like a roller-coaster kids.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Dear Universe,


I could use a little bit of luck in the next few weeks. Good vibes, positive energy, and nice stuff like that.


Sunday, February 07, 2010

A chorus in the underground.

And yet another weekend flies by. I wish they went slower. Wow. There's a deep sentiment.

Anyway, I had a nice weekend. Last night, Mathew and I went out for dinner and went to see Great Lake Swimmers at Trinty-St. Paul's. The first time I ever saw GLS was in a church, and they are a band suited to a church, or some other building with great acoustics. But, since most churches are built with acoustics in mind, they are a great venue for a gorgeous-sounding band like Great Lake Swimmers.

The whole set was amazing. They played one of my favourite songs, "Moving Pictures Silent Films", near the beginning and it was incredible. The songs that they played from their previous album "Ongiara" really shone too. The highlight for me was when the played the super fun kids' song "See You on the Moon!" from the compilation of the same name. That was the first GLS song that I ever heard, and the first time I've heard it performed live. It was so fun. You should all go download it now. And, if you ever need some really great mellow music, get yourself a GLS album.

On the drive home from the concert, Mathew and I spent some time reminiscing and he had me laughing hard.

Mathew: "Remember when you, me, and Becca T went shopping in Buffalo, and in the car on the way home we listened to all that retro pop music? That was fun!"

Christy (laughing): "Umm, if I recall, you protested the whole time, and even commented on my blog that it was horrid! And now you tell me you liked it! I knew all along!"

Because I'm that kind of person, I've unearthed his comment from my post:

Mathew said... "My car speakers are still recovering from all that horrid music..."

Today, after spending a lazy morning watching Glee, I got ready to check off the two big items of my weekend to-do list: get my passport photos, and get my birthday-iPhone.

The passport photos are horrible! It was cold, so I was wearing a hat, so my hair is so flat and ugly. Except for the strand that's just sticking out really awkwardly. And since you have to keep a neutral expression, I think I look more like a serial-killer with bad hair, than anything. And I really like my haircut right now, so grrr! Oh well, passport photos are supposed to be ugly, right? If they were good, it would raise suspicion, and they wouldn't let me into foreign countries.

In between taking the passport photo, and seeing the horror of their development, I was able to get my iPhone.

First, when I had to take out my old crappy ugly phone to find some info, the saleswoman looks at my phone and says "Wow, this is quite the upgrade." It made me laugh. I am going to enjoy the fact that the kids at school won't all have better phones that I do anymore.

Then, when she was setting up the Sim card, she showed me the tool that takes the Sim card out, and told me to hold onto it in case I have to ever remove the card. However, if I was to lose it, I could use a paper clip or something else to remove it.

This little conversation made me remember when Claire bought her iPhone while I was visiting her this summer and she couldn't get her Sim card into the phone, because she didn't have the tool. However, her intrepid blog buddy Christielli suggested using a earring post to great success! Anyway, it's too bad that Claire could not have accompanied me in my iPhone buying experience, since I was there for hers.

However, I must point out to Claire that iPhone activation in Canada is a little bit better than in the UK. I was able to walk out with a working iPhone, and go to Starbucks and play around with it while enjoying a caramel macchiato. I did all the important things like call my mom, and set up my email, facebook, and twitter. She couldn't use hers 'til she connected it to her laptop.

So yeah, I've been spending my evening playing with my new toy. I got a pretty hot-pink case for her, and I've decided to name her Alice. I've been told that iPhones need names, and that's the first one that popped into my head. I think it's because I'm excited for Tim Burton's "Alice in Wonderland" to come out. That's the only explanation that I can come up with. So Alice she will be.

I've got a busy week at school (is there any other kind?) coming up, then on Friday night, I'm on the train to St. Ratford for my bday weekend. Hence, that's why I decided to get the iPhone a week early.

Anyway, I hope the rest of you have a great week and treat yourselves to something nice. :)

Friday, February 05, 2010

It's all in the words, but I'm here for the pictures.

Ach. I just found out that another one of my besties might be moving away from TO for awhile for work. It's not for sure, and wouldn't be forever (I hope), but really universe, just one at time please! The idea's a huge shock for me though. I seem to be more shocked by it then my friend, who's just meh about it.

Speaking of far away besties, it's a little over a month until I get to see Becca T again. I've changed a lot since she's left, I tell you. I have bangs now. Luckily I finally got a picture of them that I could put on Fbook, so it's not too much of a shock for her.

I need to renew my passport ASAP. I will miss my old passport. The old girl and I have been places. Five years ago, when I first got her, I was planning my very first big trip ever: my trip to Australia. I can't believe that was five years ago!

Anyway, so one of the things I need to do this weekend is to get new photos done and fill in my forms. It's fun to think about where the next five years will take me and how different things will be next time before my new passport expires.

Now that I've been to France, and I'm going there again, I'm really not sure where I should go next. Any ideas?

Hope you all have nice weekends!

ps So I went to bed early tonight (10 pm) and look what happened! I wake up at 1 am with a lot of energy to blog. WTF? I should accept my night owl-hood at not try to change it.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Clutching my coffee, calling me sugar.

More randomness, because that's all I've got these days.

1) As I mentioned in my previous post, I watched the Grammies. I was really impressed by Pink's performance, and I have been listening to her song "Glitter in the Air" a lot. I don't often sway towards pop music**, but I've said it before, and I'll say it again: I really like Pink.

2) Our computer network at school has been down for two days. This is really annoying. I'm trying to do report cards and start a new semester. Grrrr. So annoying. Did I mention that I'm annoyed?

3) The return of my work spouse from maternity leave has provided me with so many belly laughs. Today she thought my period 4 class was a club because she was confused at what time of day it was. So much fun.

4) One thing that I'm proud of is that I'm a really great colleague. People are always thanking me 'cuz I share my stuff, teach them how to light cool things on fire, and support them. I realized this when I was out on Friday and I had all these young teachers hugging me and thanking me, and some kind emails in my mailbox. Conan O'Brien was right when he said:
"if you work really hard, and you're kind, amazing things will happen." That's seriously one of my favourite quotes ever.

5) Speaking of amazing, I ended up on Bloor Street today after school, and wandered into a certain store that's really extravagant, but that I like. I fell in love with a pricey handbag (ie more than I've ever spent before, but not insane) and then they told me it was the last one in stock. I realized that I have a certain significant birthday coming up, and really, what every girl needs when she reaches a certain age is an extravagant handbag, so I bought it, and had it gift-wrapped, and I get to open it on my bday weekend. Right now it's sitting under my birthday tree.^^

Here's a picture of it. Yes, I'm so sad, that when I got home, I had to look it up online, where's it's also sold-out!

It's prettier in person because it has a bit of a gold undertone. I like the colour because it will go with anything, and isn't black or brown, which I already have.

6) Tomorrow is Wednesday. I'm excited for this weekend because I'm seeing GLS, and I'm going to get my other birthday splurge: an iPhone! I want to have it for my bday weekend, so the weekend before my bday weekend is a perfect time to get it.

**In all honestly, I sway towards pop music more than I'd care to admit. Shhhhh.

^^ Yes, my Christmas tree is still up, so now I'm calling it the birthday tree. Remember how I said in a previous post that I'm really inept in some areas of my life? This year, taking down Christmas decorations is one.