Survey from Jackie

1. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE? A character in an Ayn Rand book actually… among other things.
4. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE LUNCH MEAT? uh… I'm not a huge fan but I like ham occasionally, or chicken or turkey occasionally.
5. DO YOU HAVE KIDS? nope.
7. DO YOU USE SARCASM A LOT? occasionally… and I try really hard to make it EXCEEDINGLY evident when I do.
10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE CEREAL? Uh… I like Kashi Go Lean Crunch, Oatmeal Crisp, Maple frosted mini wheats, Multigrain Cheerios, Nature's Path Organic O's.
12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG? Occasionally.
13. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE ICE CREAM? Gelato from Italy or Switzerland.
14. WHAT IS THE FIRST THING YOU NOTICE ABOUT PEOPLE? Their overall physical comportment.
15. RED OR PINK? Red.
17. WHOM DO YOU MISS THE MOST? my far flung friends… plus the nearby ones I rarely see.
19. WHAT COLOUR PANTS AND SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? dark navy blue jeans, no shoes, just white and black and grey checked socks.
20. WHAT WAS THE LAST THING YOU ATE? Food from Il Portico with Jackie.
23. FAVOURITE SMELLS? good food.
24. WHO WAS THE LAST PERSON WITH WHOM YOU TALKED ON THE PHONE? Well I'm currently talking to Mike, but before that it was Jackie.
25. DO YOU LIKE THE PERSON WHO SENT THIS TO YOU? Most certainly. She's a great friend.
26. FAVOURITE DRINK? the non-alcoholic, non-caffeinated kind
27. FAVOURITE SPORT TO WATCH? Ice sports (figure skating, hockey, speed skating, etc.), and water sports (eg. swimming, diving etc.) and whatnot (I like watching sports).
28. HAIR COLOUR? brown
29. EYE COLOUR? brown
31. FAVOURITE FOOD? I like most foods.
32. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS? a mix of both… though I don't seek out either actually.
33. FAVOURITE MOVIE OR LAST MOVIE YOU WATCHED The last movie I saw was Enchanted.
34. SUMMER OR WINTER? Fall or spring! 🙂 NOT -45 Celcius.
36. HUGS OR KISSES? hugs!! 🙂
37. FAVOURITE DESSERT? the healthy kind.
39. LEAST LIKELY TO RESPOND? people who don't want to and/or don't see this.
40. WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING? The Marquis de Sade's Justine.
41. WHAT IS ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? the CKI graphic standard image thingy.
43. FAVOURITE SOUND? laughter.
46. DO YOU HAVE A SPECIAL TALENT? I dunno. I like to think I have some.
47. WHERE DO YOU LIVE? here.
48. WHOSE ANSWERS ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO GETTING BACK? Whoever has some answers to give.

And somehow she inspired me…

… I can't believe she's gone. I feel like shaking the internet and making it tell me what went wrong. How can Facebook and so many of my friends be telling me this horrible truth? That one amazing bright leader is gone.

It hits me like a punch to the gut and I want to know more details. All at once. Details solidify the truth, and it seems so surreal. How can it have happened, and what happened?

Gina Durham, while I did not know her well, was an amazing leader, with an infectious smile. She treated me in such a way that I felt happier each time I encountered her, although I am clearly no Jersey girl. She simply cared. And treated all as they should be treated.

Such an amazing individual. She will be missed.

And it is on days like these that I am truly thankful for Facebook, and the internet, and so much else besides. Without these I wouldn't know… and that too would be a loss.

Rest in Peace, Gina. Let's hope we all live life to the fullest in your memory, for that a lesson you remind me of constantly, especially today.

I need a hug.

Quiz goodness from my life AND Tag game for you

1. What are your initials? AKG
2. What is your favorite thing to wear? Gosh… clothes! 😉 I love my new boots, and a multitude of other awesome things in my overly stuffed closet.
3. Last thing you ate? A royal mandarin orange (or 3).
4. One place you will NEVER eat? Uh… well… hopefully I won't ever eat at some sort of poisonous food place… 😉 I don't like saying NEVER when it comes to food, although if the food is almost entirely cilantro composed, that would probably be a big no-no too.
6. Last person you hugged? Beth.
7. Does anyone you know wanna date you? Uh… so I had a date last night… so I know the answer to that question.
8. Would you date anyone you met online? Unlikely unless through CKI or something online.
9. Name something you like physically about yourself. My shoulders.
10. The last place you went out to eat? Hmmm… Actually go out rather than ordering in or eating at SaveOn? Shogun.
11. Who is your best friend? I have several whom I would consider best friends. I unfortunately do not spend enough time with them on a regular enough basis for my happiness, but they are people I enjoy spending time with and with whom I feel comfortable talking about nearly anything with.
12. What time of the day is it? 4:15ish.

13. Who/What made you angry today? Nothing made me angry… other than my own body perhaps, but that's a minor inconvenience rather than anything important enough to get actually angry about. My head's in an odd place, and I'm fine with that.
14. Baseball or Football? Football.
15. Ever gone skinny dipping? Nope.
16. Favorite type of Food: Uh… lots of types actually. Too many good ones out there, really.
17. Favorite holidays: The Winter Holiday season rocks!
18. Do you download music: Not particularly.
19. Do you care if your socks are dirty? Well… depends. If I'm camping, the Black Socks song reigns supreme… otherwise, I like 'em clean if possible.
20. Opinion of Chinese symbol tattoos? If it's truly meaningful to you, do whatever you wish. I don't plan on EVER having any tattoos thanks.
21. Would you date the person who posted this? Not unless we both changed our preferences in significant others.
22. Has anyone ever sang or played for you personally? Uh… no… not really… Hmmm… actually maybe… I can't remember if anyone serenaded me on an oboe… I don't think so, as much as I may have asked.
23. Do you love anyone? Love as in tru luv (a la Princess Bride), no. Love as in friendship, yes very much so. Love as in more than friendship, perhaps. Love as in familial love, certainly.
24. Are colored contact lenses sexy? *shrugs* not particularly. I prefer eyes without artificial colour enhancement.
25. Have you ever bungee jumped? No, and I don't particularly ever want to.
26. Have you ever gone white-water rafting? YES and I wanna do more!
27. Has anyone ten years older than you ever hit on you? YES. I dated at least one of 'em.
29. Have you met a real redneck? Yes. sure. Comes with the territory.
30. How is the weather right now? Cold.
31. What are you listening to right now? Kings of Leon – True Love Way
32. What is your current favorite song? I have several I truly enjoy… but Across the Universe by The Beatles is one of the best.
33. What was the last movie you watched? Enchanted.
34. Do you wear contacts? No. I just don't wear my glasses most of the time.
35. Where was the last place you went besides your house? Mike's place.
36. What are you afraid of? Well there is that nightmare of dying while unable to save those I love in a house fire… but realistically I'm afraid of being alone forever… and of not achieving what I think to be my most important goals.
37. How many piercings have you had? None.
38. What piercings do you want? NONE.
39. What's one thing you've learned this year? That I actually love school somehow.
40. What do you usually order from Starbucks? Their Chai Tea Latte is alright.
41. Which is better: Facebook or MySpace? Facebook, of course.
42. Have you ever fired a gun: Yes. I was in Cadets for a year.
43. Are you missing someone? Lots of great people who I don't see often enough.
44. Favorite TV show? Gah… of those currently on air, Criminal Minds.
45. Do you have an obsession with WoW? Nope, I don't play World of Warcraft — it would be too addicting.
46. Has anyone ever said you looked like a celeb? Yes, but I can't remember whom, as it was from a movie I hadn't seen.
47. What Magazines are you reading? Unlimited Magazine, GOOD Magazine, Circle K Magazine, and occasionally Harpers Magazine.
48. Who would you like to see right now?
I don't honestly know.
49. Favorite movie of all time? Uh, I like a bunch of them. How about I list 10 Things I Hate About You as a possibility?
50. Do you find yourself loved? Sure.
51. Have you ever been caught doing something you weren't suppose to? Of course.
52. Favorite smell? Yummy food.
53. Butter, plain, or salted popcorn? Uh… Kettle corn.
54. Have you ever done the celebrity challenge? And what is this exactly?
56. Has anyone you were really close to passed away recently? Nope, not to my knowledge.
57. Our Lady Peace or Nickelback? Nickelback, mostly because of the message of one of their more recent songs. While I know I liked OLP, I can't remember any of their songs currently.
58. What's something that really bugs you? the fact that I'm always behind on my reading list… I mean why can't there be more time to read?
59. Do you like Michael Jackson? The music was pretty good to dance to. As for the person, celebrity got to him…. bad.
60. Taco Bell or Burger King? Burger King. But only because the Whopper Jr with cheese is okay. Reasonably speaking, I get physically ill if I eat from either if it's a portion bigger than that anyway.
61. What's your favorite perfume? I don't have one.
62. Favorite baseball team? Uh… Blue Jays?
63. Favorite cereal? Uh… Kashi Go Lean Crunch
64. Nipple or Nose rings? Nose. But I don't like either for the most part (mind you some people can make facial piercings look fabulous so I digress.
65. What's the longest time you've gone without sleep? I dunno… more than a full day but not much more than that.
66. Last time you went bowling? Uh… some sort of CKI event somewheres.
67. Where is the weirdest place you have slept? Uh, wait, I sleep in weird places? *shrugs* most of 'em were on the floor somewheres… like Juarez, Ilan, etc.
68. Who was your last phone call? Mike.
69. Last time you were at work? Yesterday.
70. What's the closest orange object to you? the ad in my day timer for Enterprise.

Tag, you're it!
Here's how you play:

Once you've been tagged you have to write 10 weird, random, facts, habits or goals about yourself, at the end choose 10 people to be tagged, list their names and why you tagged them. You can't tag the person that tagged you so since you can't tag me back let me know when you are done so that I can go read your answers…

1. Apparently I get pseudo-playful-violent occasionally which indicates certain underlying emotions that I don't feel like indicating outright at the time of that pseudo-playful-violence.

2. I am ridiculously methodical about internet stuff and contest entering and whatnot.

3. I feel guilty when I don't listen to Jackie's good advice.

4. As much as I'm able to pick up the phone and call people whenever, I hardly ever do so. It's silly, I know.

5. My pseudo-ludditeish tendancies are pretty rediculous… but I like having corded telephones.

6. I am often rule-bound… Hopefully this rule-bound nature is not too detrimental as it is in the book I am reading (mind you the Marquis de Sade is pretty out there 😉 There's a reason why the word Sadism was coined!).


8. I fantasize about a lot of negative things… oddly they are great to think of before falling asleep.

9. I still want to live happily ever after.

10. I enter a ridiculous amount of contests. And win approximately monthly.

Tags (I'm lazy so it's half real names and half LJ monikers, okay?):
Jackie — one of the best friends I could have, and of course she's the best style adviser evar!
Nancy — one of the most fun singers and genuine people I know.
Beth — because we share so many great character traits and she excels at what I don't!
toomuchpete — because I'm curious as to what he'd write!!!
Mim — who always makes me smile when I see her in person. I need to see her more often.
Rachel — who's got to be one of the most stylish CKI people I've ever met, with such vibrant awesomeness!
hobbit_maiden — who somehow manages to always entertain me with her awesome posted entries.
Josh — whom I have known since our Governor days in CKI and who is still one of the awesomest friends I met and still stay in touch with that year.
verlaine — who is brilliant and who makes me want to play more board games 🙂
robynbright — who is always bright and cheery somehow!

Untraceable movie tix… (since I can't use 'em)

Somehow I managed to win two separate contests of double guest passes to the screening of the film, Untraceable at South Edmonton Common at 7pm on the 23rd of January. As I can't go (I work until 6:30pm and since they issue more passes than there are seats, I won't be able to arrive on time (nor early enough to use the passes!), I am wondering if anyone else would like them. I will have to pick up one set of passes on Monday I believe while the other set will be mailed to me… so you'll likely have to pick them up from me.

Quiz from Mim and Jackie

Hi, my name is: Ali
When I'm nervous I: avoid doing things, or dive in before I can think about it too much. I also talk relatively quickly and may get stressed.
By this time next year: I will have graduated from this degree! 🙂 And be contemplating new changes I surmise.
Last night I: enjoyed the work Christmas party!

Were you a planned baby: I would imagine so.
When's your birthday: July 24

Do you have low self esteem? Sometimes. I've been working on it.
Do you get depressed about things easily? Not usually, but sometimes.
Are you happy right now? Yes. I'm happy to be able to say that, too.

Are you comfortable with the way you look: Yes, definitely. That said there's always room for improvement: I'd like to get in better shape physically and health-wise, improve my skin, and smile more! 🙂
Describe your hair: Long brown hair. Pretty fun to style. Not in the greatest condition but I'm sure if Jackie has any say in the matter it will get into better condition shortly… speaking of which I need to get new conditioner. This would be a perfect opportunity for me to remember to ask Jackie about this. Hmmm….

Ever been kicked out of a bar? Not kicked out forceably… reminded that the bar is closed and that I should leave, yes… closing a bar can be fun in the right circumstances (yes this is coming from a non-drinker)
Ever been arrested? No.

Do you prefer indoors or outdoors? I like a mix of both.
Do you like walking in the rain? Yes, especially if I'm not wearing glasses at the time!

Are you a vegetarian? Nope. But I love veggies!
Anything you absolutely could eat forever? *shrugs* I like too many foods really. Probably a lot of 'em!
What is your favorite dessert? Usually fruit based desserts that aren't overly sweet or rich, but yummy and unique… I like cheesecake, caramel, butterscotch and whatnot too… but all desserts in moderation.

Do you want to get married? yes, or at least have a long term relationship with some sort of joining as a couple type ceremony with my friends present
Have you ever been in love? yes.

4. Where is your cell phone? I don't own one.
5. Cheesecake? Yes, please.
7. Your dream last night? I can't remember it. It was weird though.
8. Your favorite drink? Uh… non-alcoholic ones! I like smoothies though.
9. Car you want? I don't. I go for public transit personally… 🙂
12. Your fears: Are pretty basic… and important for survival.
14. Who did you hang out with last night? My co-workers and former co-workers and their guests… plus afterward, my roommate.
18. Where did you grow up? In BC and Alberta.
20. What are you wearing? My T-shirt noir mysterieux, black work pants, black socks, and appropriate undergarments.
21. Tattoos? I don't want any.
22. Ketchup? Is unnecessary.
23. Your computer? Is surviving! 🙂
24. Your life?: Is great except for my cold. Darn cold!
25. Your friends? Are super awesome and I don't see them enough!
27. What are you thinking about right now? Firefly and my desire to watch it.
29. Your work? Is enjoyable most of the time.
30. Your summer? Is going to involve Orlando and Denver I imagine…
32. Your favorite color(s)? Red is my fave… although I like others muchly.
33. When is the last time you laughed? today at work.
34. Last time you cried? I teared up while reading the newspaper. Darn van collision out East.
37. Last received call? Uh… for me? *shrugs* one of Beth's friends called earlier though I think.
39. Last IM? uh… *shrugs*

1. Who knows the most about you? My family and probably Kim and Jackie
3. What should we do with stupid people? (Mim)Not let them number surveys.(/Mim) One great answer!
4. What is making you sad right now? that there aren't more free-time-hours in my days!
5. What was the first thing you did this morning? Noticed just how sore my throat felt and nestled into my covers further, hitting the snooze button after realizing it was a good song.
6. Last person you went out to dinner with? Well… Kevin and Christine! 🙂 (unless you count my staff Christmas party last night)
7. Are you spoiled? Uh… in some ways…
8. Do you drink lots of water? Not usually, but the last two days I have been due to my cold.
9. What toothpaste do you use? Crest is my favorite — from back when I was a kid AND when I did some scientific experiments on it in high school. I know that it works! I also have Glister in the travel toiletries bag for when I'm on the go.
10. How do you vent your anger? writing.
11. The last compliment you received? I don't know which was the last one, but last night Alex compared me to a '40s star… which was a great compliment!
12. What did you do last weekend? Board Games, Twelfth Night, and Firefly was last weekend… plus a whole lot of WORKING.
13. When was the last time you threw up? Nov 29, 2007
14. What theme does your room have? it doesn't. Massive clutter more like.
15. Are you a mama's girl/boy or a daddy's girl/boy? *shrugs*
16. Would you ever join the military? no. I dislike marching — my experience in cadets taught me that much.
17. The last website you visited? and well this one!
18. Who was the last person you took a picture with? Gosh… probably one of Ramona's pictures of Alex, me, Shaun and Andres?
19. Last person you watched a movie with: I went to Enchanted on Thursday by myself.
20. What did you do/will you do for your birthday this year? Hopefully spend time with awesome friends.
21. Number of layers on your bed? Mattress, Mattress pad, sheet, other sheet, duvet cover and duvet — so it depends on how you're counting them!
22. Is anything alive in your room? uh… hopefully not much other than me… but I'm betting there's dustmites and other unseen critters somewheres.
23. Today, would you rather go back a week or go forward a week? Forward will be fine although last weekend was lots of fun.
24. What are you looking forward to right now? Firefly and sleep.

On the first week of school in 2008…

School goes well: I'm actually rather excited about my courses. The readings look fabulous (not that I've had to do much reading just yet!) loads of young adult books, Strindberg plays and banned books/scandalous lit. It'll be a fun semester!

The question I keep getting from people is of course: what next? And I could answer with the normal answer of 'get writing' or something of the sort, but really, there's more to it than that. I will graduate this spring again. I imagine I'll slow down again (I need a break), do some travel (mostly conventions/conferences) spend more time with friends, and take some open studies classes (okay, fine, I'll admit that I enjoy school and don't seem to leave), before contemplating MLIS or other possibilities. Yes, that's right I don't want to be pursuing a degree for a year or two after this one.

I'm contemplating doing more dancing, increasing Kiwanis involvement, and of course taking time out for myself. I'm thinking about a lot of things.

And yesterday's back-to-school WEM shopping trip reminded me of such. I did end up buying a lot of the things I've either wanted or needed for a long long time (noteably new jeans, new and AWESOME boots!, socks, and a Hopper calendar (I thought of Heather and the Film noir class when I picked up the calendar — yay for Barb's classes!) among other things). I finally saw Enchanted in the theatre (which I adored — yay for awesome movies!), and I had a pretty horrible scare when I misplaced my wallet (thank goodness I found it again — I think I had a few too many shopping bags).

I don't shop all that often and when I do I do tend to pick up a rather lot of things. Which is always a good sign, since that way I don't have to spend as much time shopping.

I even ordered the most of my course books — of course I still need/want to buy a few from the bookstore that I didn't pick up the first time. I even ordered some extra pleasure reading books… partly to make the free shipping totals. And I finally booked my flights for NY — now for hotel! 🙂

Lots on the go, lots to do, but you know what? I feel great!

Three Days Grace?

So, my latest contest win is a couple of tix to the Three Days Grace Concert in Edmonton on the 30th at the Shaw (doors at 6:30 concert at 7:30), and while I'm not a HUGE fan of the band, I'm thinking of going to the concert (hey it's sold out I think too). That said, I don't want to go alone (and obviously since I won 2 tickets, it's probably a good idea to go with someone 😉 ). Anyone interested in joining me?

In other news, New Years was great. I spent the evening of the 31st at a small house party as per the usual these past few years. It was nice to catch up with people who matter a lot to me but whom I don't see often enough. It was also nice to confirm that I will be indeed going to a wedding in March. We basically just snacked, talked, played with the webcam, and enjoyed ridiculously expensive champagne at midnight. And yes, we did watch the ball drop on TV in NYC, and also the Edmonton fireworks also on TV. I also got home remarkably early (which was good since I worked New Year's Day.

In other news, last night, Chris Samuel's Improv As Prime Minister contest event was rockin' AWESOME (plus the improv people used my suggestions often!!). It was also great to see so many familiar faces at the event.

Now I had better get back to being semi-productive.