Yay Geek! :)

So I've always liked Geek tests… well this one was especially fun when I ran across it today… so I thought I'd both post my results and challenge you all to reply to my message with yours! 🙂
I rather liked the questions on a whole… there's actually a few things on that list that I ought to do sometime ironically enough… (anyone interested? 😉 )
29.19132% Geek: A Total Geek! (rather low I would think… but my lack of calculator due to theft interferes with things sometimes among other things 😉 )

Busy Day

Today was a busy day.
Good things: Got Grad pics done! They rock! 🙂 Now I just need to pick out which ones I actually want….
Volunteered for the Stollery Children's Hospital Foundation 2004 Radiothon for a couple hours.
Had a great time at dance class (although my centre of balance was a little wobbly for a bit there… and my feet hurt for no good reason)!
Got a bunch of other little things accomplished and saw a few friends.

Not so good things: It's still WAY too cold!!! I DON'T like shivering whilst I'm puttering around INDOORS! Outdoors I can understand… but brrrr!!!
I feel I'm getting more and more behind in my readings for class (not entirely unexpected).
It's cold!! (I dunno how many times I should have to repeat this… but heck we determined that it was warmer in Norman Wells today (NWT) than here!! It's pretty darnned cold!)
And I really need a better bag for school… the old one I had was perfect (before it was stolen that is)… it's been two months (almost) and gosh is it ever annoying to have to use these other bags that are either too small or akward.
I've complained enough for one night (but damn it's COLD!).

Thank You!

Sometimes life makes you sit back down and reflect.
Today was one of those times. Sure I spent an unusually large amount of time today scuttling between home and school and downtown and work and… etc. In the abominable weather out there (brrr!!), but just the same an eye opening day.

Today I attended two international week sessions, the first being oriented toward teaching about constructing a culture of peace and resulted in my writing some pretty darned decent poetry (although rather Utopian and unrealistic). The second had me recalling all the experience I had with military-esque things…. Honestly, the evening's keynote literally blew me away. It was that good. After having seen military service men congratulate me on my World War poetry as a youth, after having been in cadets, after having lived with a roommate who was in the military at the time, after having known so many friends involved in the military, hearing about them going off to courses and… the places about which the keynote described… I guess it all felt just that little bit more real. After having sat with the military at the huge public ceremony following the deaths of some of our Canadian soldiers, after having seen the impact of war through pictures and words, after having been literally obsessed with literature pretaining to wartime as a young guppy, the effect of this evening's keynote was really truly amazing. Honestly I don't know why. And yet I do know why.

And to all those out there involved in the military in any way shape or form:
I couldn't do what you do.
And I feel utterly grateful that there are people out there doing what must be done.
For not only our country, but for others peace and safety as well.


So as the thermometer dips even lower this week… I run off to work like the scared grashopper that I am… and arrive in time to freeze my little body in the cold air barely buffered by the store's set of double doors. When I've a ton of frozen food in my hands it does not help that I'm getting a blast of some of the coldest air of the year in my face.

I've been shaking since 12:45 this afternoon when I stepped outside to walk to work… and am still too cold to accomplish anything overly significant this evening. And I'm getting rather behind at the moment anyhow.

And why is it that my pens always run out of ink at the most inopportune times?

I talked too much today. Had some great conversations though (Thanks to those involved!)… but also dominated situations where I probably shouldn't have.

On another note: I finished my comp lit. presentation.

Next I'll have to prepare for group presentation on Personal Ads in local newspapers I think.

But I think I'll try to have some fun tonight. Need to relax. Meetings can be stressful. Anyone want a timbit?

More on The Man in the High Castle

Since I'm not doing my presentation precisely on this topic… I think I'll address it here instead.
You see, as much as I enjoyed this book, and admired the author for having crafted such a good work of fiction… the book frustrated me.
I don't like how everyone fits some sort of mold. The Japanese AREN'T just as described in this work of fiction. Nor are all the Germans, or all the Americans or all of anyone else. I grew up with a melange of Japanese and Caucasian traditions and whatnot. And that's only a fraction of why this book frustrates me.
nd I only know a fraction more… but for this fraction, think I have some idea of why:
Having been insulted many times with relation to my racial appearance, the incidence of such strong racial categorization found in this novel almost made me feel sick.
I've had the words 'Jap' and 'Chink' used to describe me. I've had people spit on me to make me feel as if I were less than I was. I've seen people deride me for being female and for having a potentially Muslim (or marginalized in general) name. I am not a 'Boy Named Sue'. I've spend many hours trying to deal with the fact that people thought me as inferior or at least treated me as such. And this cuts like so many chainsaws. Not smooth by any means of imagination.
Far removed from it I am now. But yet, every time I encounter it anew, the memories still make me recoil, and this book encites some of this disgust. Schoolyard bullying is one thing, but enough is enough. Now it may be more subtle than being thrown against lockers or being told the impossible: that someone is allergic to me. Now it may be the mere insinuation that I am not as Canadian as they are. That I should perhaps not exist due to the nature of my birth. That I am not as good as they.
Should I say: Well so sorry for existing?
No! I'm here, and will be for a long while yet.
And the book opens my eyes, to how much terribly worse it could all be.
And the book IS fiction.
As much as my presentation explains how it sometimes isn't.
And were I born in the world of that book, what could I do, really?
For I would most surely not fit.
And unlike Frank Frink, I could not hide.
I look too much the part.
And it's a scary thought.
Albeit a real one.
They still do these things.
Some places.

Things you may not know…

Okay…. sure there's some obvious things about life. That's a given (or is it? Whatever). Anywho… Some people (although I dunno who exactly) don't know how much I utterly adored Pern books as a teen. My very favorite escapist literature (at least until I discovered Mercedes Lackey anyway)… so when I discover this cool quiz about it… I just had to post it for everyone to see…
You are a gold dragon! Golds are the queens, the
rulers of the dragons. You are respected by
every other dragon, and everyone listens to
you, no matter what. The highest-ranking males
compete to be your mate. Your human partner is
the leader of the Weyr. You are diplomatic,
and good at finding solutions to problems that
satisfy the majority of the people concerned.
You are the largest dragon, and the most
powerful. All hail the queen!

What color of Pernese dragon are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Anywho… that covers that… well I guess there are also some people out there who don't know how obsessed I have been in the past with random quizzes (heck, how else did I manage to while away so much time in my comparative youth trying to figure out how nerdy or wierd or insane or whatever I might be?)… so here's a couple of other quizzes for your benefit, afterall… I enjoyed these:

You are blessed with FAERY wings. Beauty,
laughter, life, magic…that's what you are all
about. You are refreshingly innocent and happy
with your life of purity and play. Life's a
game and it's a good one. In your eyes there's
no way to lose! You can be very mischeivous and
have been known to cause trouble, but it's all
in the name of fun and not meant to really harm
anyone. You like to play tricks on people who
aren't quite as bright or clever as you – which
is almost everyone. Nature is the setting you
prefer to be in – Always. Barefoot and wild you
can't be tamed. You're probably a restless
spirit who loves to travel, and quite a
dreamer. Your creativity is astounding and your
art (of whatever media – from writing to
painting to drama) is like something from
another world – ethereal and often very
fantasy-oriented. You can either be a social
butterfly or a loner with their head in the
clouds – but rarely inbetween. You stubbornly
refuse to accept responsibility or to give in
to the wishes of others – unless you feel like
it. You have a strong passion for music and
can't imagine life without it. You'll grow up
someday, but you'll always be a child at heart.
You are adventurous and love to take risks, and
feel a deep connection with the weather,
plants, and animals. You prefer sunshine to
thunder or snow, the warmth of summer to
autumn's chill, and quiet forests to suburban
backyards. Magic through and through, you are
far more powerful than you seem, and are
capable of being extremely passionate. Though
you can be childish, naive, stubborn, and
self-absorbed, one thing is certain – life with
you will never be boring!

*~*~*Claim Your Wings – Pics and Long Answers*~*~*
brought to you by Quizilla

You are Form 4, Gargoyle: The Fallen.

And The Gargoyle mended his wings from the
blood of the fallen so he could rise up from
imprisonment. With great speed and
resourcefulness, Gargoyle made the world his
for the taking.

Some examples of the Gargoyle Form are Daedalus
(Greek) and Mary Magdalene (Christian).
The Gargoyle is associated with the concept of
success, the number 4, and the element of wood.
His sign is the new moon.

As a member of Form 4, you are a creative and
resourceful individual. You are always
thinking of possible solutions to problems you
face and you generally choose one that is
right. Much of your success comes from your
ability to look at things a little differently
than everyone else. Gargoyles are the best
friends to have because they don't always take
things for face value.

Which Mythological Form Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

But really those aren't all that important things. What miffs me is that people continually assume things. I do too… but I cannot fathom WHY some of these assumptions are made. I mean I'm not some little goody-two-shoes that came right out of the pristine perfect mold not too long ago. I'm not some sort of freak or idiot at the absolute other extreme either (I can't even figure out what other extreme this would be… but in any case), not that that would be a bad thing, but rather I somehow doubt anyone would believe it.
That's the rub: I'm not whatever everyone keeps thinking I am. There: I've said it. Stop categorizing me as something I'm not. Categorize me as whom I am if you're wanting to categorise me (afterall everyone categorizes people… whether intentional or not).
But whatever. It's not as if this'll really make any difference. Life in general goes well enough so I'm not about to complain. Just wanted to continue making my little observations about the observations of others that I have been made aware of in the past weeks and months. [gosh am I ever good at stating the obvious… <-- yet another trait my mother would rag on me for, I am sure... me the smarty pants person who thinks she knows everything... I'm not! Gah!)

The Man in the High Castle

Over the past week I have slowly been riding a rollercoaster of deep thought and exuberant imagination.

The more often I have used a great philosopher's words The one thing I know for sure is that I know nothing the more I doubt that I know even that.

Still, I shall ride the waves that come crashing against the hard rocky shoreline… continuing as always to hope, to dream, to plan and to imagine.

Peace and quiet of solitude
So painfully loud
Engulfs even the quietest
Of whispers.

Tuition increase tirade

Okay… so here's the deal: Tuition's going up by the maximum possible amount for the coming year. Comment: I am not terribly pleased. Sure, I can probably afford it (heck, if I absolutely couldn't, I'd take some time off before plunging into an arts degree), but heck! You know how many people I know struggling to pay? And it's not just that either… so many friends/acquaintances who either never made it to higher education due to finances, who quit due to finances (dratted student loan system in some cases), or who have asked me rather depressing questions re: basic needs. Sure we'll continue to pay the money… but we lose out too.

$228 is more than a week's pay for a part-time employee at many (if not most) part time jobs students undertake during the school year. It will hit the pocket book hard. Afterall we're one of the most debt-ridden generations. How does one get the 'whole University experience' if one is constantly haveing to say no to participating in a social life of sorts due to work obligations… following the mighty dollar. Let alone getting into the amount of debt that those student life conscious ones must amass to compensate for the lack of such jobs in some casese. Sure, this may cut down the demand in some ways, but who will be barred from the doors of Alberta's institution(s) of higher learning? Who will be put on probation due to not studying enough because they had to PAY for their darn education? I know we live in a capitalist society… and I DO somehow see the point of view of the institution: afterall if we pay more for it, it may just have more worth… maybe… and there's other good points brought up as well about building maintenance, hiring and paying instructors etc.

But If I think about it, the quality of education that I'm paying MORE for every year — EVEN if you account for inflation — is actually worsening. Profs constantly alluding to how they used to have this course taught or how they'd like to teach it but how they can't due to class sizes and other restrictions, changes in lab space (eg. Organic Chem) even in the time since I took those classes… The classes may be getting easier, but doesn't that cheapen my degree rather than make it more useful?

I dunno. I don't actually have anything against a University education costing me money. But I do have something against the fact that it's becoming this unattainable dream for so many people. Not because it's just expensive, but because it's becoming so GOSH DARN more expensive with every coming day WITH WHAT BENEFITS???? We lose more of our green space every day, our facilities continue to become more and more outmoded… more behind the times… yet new buildings are continued to be built rather than having the old ones maintained and improved sufficiently… The hours of operation of many services could use some improvements… profs remain mediocre (or worse) in many areas, [Sure there's many stellar ones, but who doesn't have stories of the horrible monsters?] partly due to the fact that some don't even WANT to teach us… the University gets the greatest reputation for research excellence, but where do we students stand?… We run into technological glitches too often to have the best learning experiences… reading rooms are closed or have crappy hours of operation and so on and so forth. It seems to get worse every year.

I used to think university classes were what was supposed to be hard. But I was mistaken. They may be tough (really incredibly difficult actually sometimes)… but it's the real life that surrounds them that makes things increasingly hard.
(and yes, I know my rant is rather flawed… but I wanted to rant…!)