Thursday, April 29, 2010
Sorry if I've been out of touch. I've been very busy getting ready for Le Germany trip. I'm super psyched about it and can't sleep!!
Anyways, the preparations were chaotic. Not the packing itself, but the cleaning up. We have a friend who'll be watching our apartment for us, so we cleaned up, and we'll be moving out shortly after we return, so we've boxed some stuff.
I've spent the day vacuuming, running around for thread and buttons, darning Michael's pants and my socks... etc. Busy, busy, busy...
I'm leaving tomorrow! AWESOME!!!!! I'm so excited... and I just can't hide it! I'm about to lose control and I think I like it!!! *sung*... No, you did NOT see that little dance just now. Erase it from your minds eye. Erase it! I mean it!!
Anyways, apartment is now super clean and tidy. Too bad that a bitchy Chinese lady interested in the apartment had to visit it earlier today when the open suitcase was open in the middle of the living room floor. God! She made a fuss! If I remember the story, I'll tell it in another account.
And now I'm off attempting to sleep... I'M GOING TO GERMANY!!! YAY!!!
I hope I can post a little from there. I've a fresh memory card on my camera just for it! I'll update as soon as I can! Promise!
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
I finished my last exam - and with one hour to spare! It was ridiculously easy! I was not even stressed out by it... I was rather sustained through it by the thought that in three hours, I would be done with the semester and I would start on VACATION!! AWESOME!! And that thought was NEEDED because otherwise I would have fallen asleep on my exam - it was honestly THAT dull! Although, the other thing that kept me awake was my bladder... I hate exams and the need for "special permission" to leave the examination room (especially when you have super cranky and evil looking invigilators). Fifteen minutes in, I really wanted the exam to be over asap because I happened to have brought a bottle of water with me (which I sincerely regretted)... so yeah - my brain works faster under the threat of an exploding bladder! XD
But the exam does not matter. No, it does not. I need to tell you why I am not happy about the end of my semester... It's snowing. I kid you not! It's futt bucking SNOWING!! At the END of April!! And it's no longer melting snow either! When last I looked, the beautiful, lush green grass, and the spring coloured foliage was covered in white flecks of... of... of...!!! *hyperventilates*
Alright, I'm kidding - I'm not having a hyperventilation attack. I just really like that word "hyperventilation"... don't you? (I digress... again.)
Anyhoots, I am thinking that the trip to Germany could not be any more welcome! If snow is here in Montreal, then I want to get the hell out of here!! We're flying soon... so soon! I'm really excited about it! I'm looking forward to introducing Michael to my family and showing him around the gorgeous countryside! And we're also going to go see the Passion Play, which is only on once every 10 years. I went to see it in 2000 and now I'm seeing it again... looking forward to it!
*Sigh* I can't tell how many things I am looking forward to... Eis Cafe Paradiso (the best ice cream parlour in the WORLD!) ever day... beautiful Alps all around us... castles (built by crazy, but still awesome Ludwig II of Bavaria)... museums... yummy, awesome food!!!! *SQUEE*
Okay - I need to calm down - I'm looking forward to this almost a little too much! XD
The bottom line is, I cannot wait to show Michael all of this! It's going to be absolutely AMAZING! I am already packing my stuff...!
Other than the fact that I can't wait to breathe in European (specifically German) air again, I am really looking forward to seeing my family again. I have not seen my grandparents from Germany since I went there last... in January 2008. I truly miss them. And now the time to see them again is at hand... I'm soooooo excited!!
Okay - I lost the thread of what I was going to say... *pout* Anyways, we've found a person who would take over the apartment from us, so all is well and we move out in June. So upon my return I'll look forward to that. Yay! Larger apartment!
... this is the most nonsensical post ever... I apologize...
Oh, yeah - I probably won't be blogging much during the month of May: my grandparents don't have Internet, so near-daily posts will not be happening while I'm in Germany. However, you may expect a full account (pictures included) upon my return!!
Look out Europe! Here we come! (still three days to go... but never mind that...)
P.S. - Because of the Germany trip, however, it seems Anime North is out of the question after all... *pout* I have to miss out on it for another year *eyes tear up*... And costume-wise, though I have the pattern, I do not have time to sew Erica Fontaine's outfit in two days, so that's not happening either *cries now*. I cannot exactly bring my sewing machine to Germany, sadly. I know I cannot have it all - but, I will admit, I do want it all. I wish I could do both Germany AND Anime North... so I am a little disappointed in truth... However, Germany will more than make up for the loss, I am sure. Next year, next Anime North, I WILL be there! And I will have the most AMAZING costume ever that will even flabbergast Sarcasm Hime! Go me!!
That's all, for real now! Ta!
Thursday, April 22, 2010
Yes, I am disappointed about Japanese. Knowing your grade will be bad in advance just totally sucks!! However, all things considered, ale iacta est. What is done is done. Japanese is over, let's take a deep breath and move on. Hopefully I'll pass the class... but, come to think of it, I've never ever failed a class in my life before... Breaking that habit would certainly be an experience (not fun, by any means!! but it might harden me against my fear of failure). Sure, even if I pass, I know I will not be satisfied with my grade anyway - it definitely below 80%. This will not do for my 90% average (or more) ego. But, I guess I'll just have to deal with it... God, this reminds me of math class! Except that I hated math and that was my excuse for not doing as well in it as in other classes. And, to be fair, unlike everyone else in my class, I did not exactly study Japanese.
I find studying exceedingly difficult, because I'm just not used to doing it. I usually pass with ridiculous ease and without lifting a finger (I think Michael resents me for it... just a little... ;-D ) For Japanese, I actually had to make an effort. That seems to have taken my brain by surprise. I crammed for all the in-class tests and did average, but good. And I did study very hard for the final - but I probably could have done better. I believe the problem is that I have no studying method... It's what happens when you're a master procrastinator with anxiety issues like myself. I need to face the facts: when I study or cram, I am usually completely and utterly overwrought and a big unmanageable explosive ball of stress. And I still somehow manage to procrastinate everything, essays included, to very late at night and then I basically spew out an essay, usually very good ones too, in 2 to 3 hours tops. If I get distracted by Doctor Who or something while I write, it might take me 4 hours... but usually, I'd say my average is 3. Damn - I'm good! ;-D
So yeah. The point of all this chatter is that I have no proper working method when it comes to school. I usually figure that listening in class will suffice to pass the semester. It usually does, even if I do not listen in class at all. Too bad it did not work that way for Japanese. Oh well, I did my best (I really did! Who else is nuts enough to recopy her textbook by hand???) and, as I said before, what is done is done. No regrets - I enjoyed the class and learned a lot. I probably did not do well - but I did what I could.
And now, the fun part of the post!!
I went to a concert tonight. My brother's first concert actually. He sand (yelled into the mic) four songs, including 'Rasputin' by Boney M. He was painted all in red, wearing faux-fur and some kilt he quickly put together and I helped him sew... A little ridiculous if you ask me - but no bad showmanship at all. He and his band were good. But if he wants to go on with his band, he needs to learn to use his vocal chords properly. He insists that Death Metal singers always scream into the mic without holding back and so he also bawls into it recklessly. But, according to Michael, screaming is very bad for the vocal chords. So, I suspect that the Heavy Metal singers actually have a technique to scream into the mic that spares their voice in some miraculous way. My dear brother needs to learn that. Otherwise, his band career will be very short...
And in other news: my mum is back!! She came back from Germany today!! She survived the stupid ash-cloud from Iceland. Honestly, when I heard about the cloud and all the fuss about the European airspace being closed I nearly threw a fit! I was kind of pissed, because I wanted to see my mum really badly (she's always a good person to turn to during exam stress - and in general as well - she's awesome all around!), especially because I had not seen her in a while, and then the volcano erupted. I was starting to joke (this IS a joke - please don't hate me for it!) that Iceland should be bombed and that way all frequent volcano eruptions done away with. That way, we'd also solve the problem of my brother's obsession with Vikings! But that was just a joke - nothing against Icelanders or their country... I just have an issue with their volcanoes (and I bet that the couple of thousand stranded passengers across Europe are of my opinion as well when it comes to those freakin' magma pits!).
And I think my shower is haunted. No, I'm serious! I think we have a ghost who takes a shower there regularly. It sometimes just randomly starts dripping A LOT of water for about 2-5 minutes (even though all taps are closed) and then it stops... Weird...
Oh great! I DID have something else to say... but I completely forgot it. Darn! This is what happens when ghosts take showers - they distract you! And then there's nothing you can do anymore but kick yourself for forgetting your absolutely brilliant idea for a blog post! *sigh*
Crap... I'm being fussy and wallowing again, aren't I? Apologies...
I still forgot what I wanted to write but I have one last thing to say: I downloaded two of my favourite movies recently for Michael to watch. They are German comedies subtitled by Michael Bully Herbig. They're fabulously hilarious! Of course, we've got them with English subtitles, so that Michael could understand what it was all about. He loved them!! I'm soooo pleased! Here's a video from (T)Raumschiff Surprise: Periode 1, one of their movies.
Ah! These Germans are so wonderfully nuts! No one can do a Star-Trek/Star Wars/Time Machine parody like they can!! I'm sorry Mel Brooks, Space Balls is just... well, balls in comparison to this!
The other movie is called Der Schuh des Manitus and actually was made before (T)Raumschiff. Watch them in order if you watch them, please! Otherwise, some of the jokes in (T)Raumschiff are lost on you!
And with that, I wish you all the best! Pray I get my brilliant idea back! ;-D Ta-ta!
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Okay. My Japanese final is over.
I. AM. NEVER. TAKING. A. LANGUAGE. CLASS. AGAIN!
Seriously, taking one of the McGill language classes is the equivalent of suicide! The teachers are insane! I am not saying I disliked my professor - on the contrary, I thought she was very kind-hearted. However, she was excessively unreasonable in her expectations of the class. I mean, she expected us to learn new material until the LAST day of class! This is just not right! We never even had a review! I am sorry, but I came to that exam completely unknowing as to what to expect from the exam. I wish she had AT LEAST made an outline. Instead, the only thing we knew about the exam was that it was "cumulative." Great! Like that is not too vague for anyone to know what to expect from a three hour final.
It really annoyed me, because I did not have all that much time to study: I had my first final immediately after the last day of class, then a photoshoot and the Savoy formal (which had been planned waaaay ahead!) and then I worked on an essay for last Monday over the weekend. As a result? I only got to study Monday and Tuesday for today's exam!! Not NEARLY enough time! And because I did not know what to study, it turns out I studied the entirely WRONG chapters in the book! Of course she would not ask how to ask a shop-clerk to show you something, or to tell you the price of something... why should she? This was the chapter I studied after all! She rather went ahead with the REALLY new stuff, like weird-ass verb conjugations that nobody uses, the ones for which my brain had no more attention in class because I had a million assignments due simultaneously and was not sleeping... And she asked those sneaky underhanded questions again, you know, the questions for which the answer was only briefly mentioned in passing during a class, and it happens to be crammed in a corner of the textbook, so apparently that means you're supposed to know it...
*sigh* There were things I knew I knew, but I could not remember them to save my life!! I also screwed up quite a few kanji... forgetting a line here, missing a line there... Why was the only kanji I could remember perfectly VEGETABLE of all things??? (yasai: 野菜 - yep, that I could remember with ridiculous ease... and it was not on the test...)
Anyways... I managed to fill out most of the test, to my surprise. Though, after verifying some answers, I realize that this does not mean I did well. In fact, I believe I did very poorly. I kept having to replace certain words with others (i.e. "to own" with "to have" or "to exist") because I could not remember for the life of me how to say stuff. And the newest verb conjugations... yeah, uhm, forget about those. I did not get a SINGLE one right! (Trust me, I checked now that I'm out of there.) At this point, I hope I can just scrape a pass... It would suck to fail this exam and lose 9 credits and have to potentially retake it (I sure hope not!).
Anyways, I also slept very poorly last night (in other words, not at all!). I was very upset by that this morning. Indeed, I had desperately tried to sleep and yet the hours crept by, minute by minute on my alarm clock and still no sleep came. My head was reeling with kanji and random phrases in Japanese. I tried all the tricks in the book to empty my mind, at which point I got stuck at the "stop thinking now! Stop thinking about not thinking! Quit that! SLEEP ALREADY!" bit... I hate that. It makes me very upset because I really want to sleep, but just CAN'T!
So I currently look (and feel) like death warmed up. A ghost would look cheery when compared to me. That is because this is the second night in a row that I have not slept well.
Yesterday morning, after I went to bed at 5 a.m. because I wanted to really study Japanese well (I rewrote 7 chapters of the book, made vocabulary charts and everything... and I still screwed up the final!), I thought I could sleep in because I had the day off. Nada: someone decided that it was time to renovate my apartment building's courtyard. So at 9 in the morning, the jackhammers started and they kept at it until the afternoon. When your pillow is shaking and vibrating with sporadic uncomfortable tremors and the obnoxious sound of the tools drifts in through paper-thin windows, sleeping becomes quite impossible. So, with only 4 hours of sleep, I went through my day yesterday. I went and studied with a friend, then came home and studied some more.
I did have a nice little 2 hour walk with Michael, though. After calling my dad (and him telling me to quit the books and refresh my mind and body) I decided to drag Michael outside with me and we went for a walk on Mont-Royal. We went around the mountain, reaching the Lac aux Castors and having a small lunch there (we had stopped at the grocery store before to pick up some sandwiches). We had fun in the jungle gym on that side of the mountain, and also enjoyed the pleasant weather and the nice scenery. We should take walks like that more often...
And then we came home and went back to the grindstone. I found (thanks to a wonderful classmate of mine) some websites that quizzed your Japanese and I drilled myself with them to the utmost. Unfortunately, all the vocabulary and grammar points from those tests were NOT on the exam (despite the online quizzes being based solely on the textbook we used in class... ironic that the teacher has to chose all the obscure chapters that are not as well elaborated...)
And then I went to bed, attempting to sleep. To my consternation and mounting despair, attempting to sleep was to no avail and, when I finally felt tired enough to fall asleep, it was already 7:30, 15 minutes before my alarm was going to ring. Thanks for nothing, you stupid brain of mine (why couldn't you retain what you were SUPPOSED to know!?!??!) Michael, sadly, had a terrible night of sleep as well, though he was lucky enough to fall asleep in the end. I lay still by his side with very dark thoughts floating through my mind - I hate insomnia: worst case scenarios all over the place and about every situation imaginable! And telling myself that the exam "will go well" did nothing to help the visions going through my mind...
And now the test is done. And I really, sincerely hope to God that I achieved a pass. I think I deserved it. I just screwed up, that's all (and there's my luck again: this is what, the 5th time I study the wrong thing for an exam??)
I'm currently praying that I won't fail. I'm also thinking of Michael who's doing his history final today (he should be starting soon). Best of luck to him, I'm sure he'll do well.
Now there's only one more final to go before Germany. Victorian Lit. I still have to read Bleak House, but I think it'll work out fine. At least now I can breathe again. Victorian Lit isn't out to kill me, like the Japanese final was (it tried to choke me in my sleep! I'm sure of it!)
And now, dear blog, after the long promised post about the exam, my brain feels like mush. Seriously, I am surprised it did not come streaming out of my ears and nose during the exam like some gruesome pulp. Because it does feel thoroughly mashed (picture grapes being stomped on to make wine... yeah - that's my brain). I think that if someone was to crack open my skull right now they would not be able to tell the difference between what was once called my brain and a huge bowl of apple sauce... I don't know why, but I'm just convinced that my brain now looks like apple sauce. That, or it's fried... like when I fry an egg (i.e. burnt to a black crisp that set off every smoke alarm in the house).
Okay, enough now (geez - I can't believe how much I can write even in this state of... bleh!). I am going to TRY and get some sleep...
P.S. Still no news from Germany for jobs... sad face... T_T
Saturday, April 17, 2010
Michael and I - Me pouting (it wasn't a real pout) - A full view of my dress...
Look! It has pockets! - Michael and his lovely harem of ladies... - Michael and I and lots of hugs!
I hope you enjoy these! There are many, many more of the Savoy formal (119 pictures in total) but I cannot fill up my blog with ALL of them or you'll never see the end of it!
I am very sorry for neglecting you for so long... you know it is not in my nature! I am very sorry - but that's the finals at McGill University for you. All notion of time stops and you start calculating in "how many exams are left?" rather than hours or days...
Anyhow, I have already have my first final. Alas, by far the easiest one of all my exams. I am still quaking in my boots at the idea of the Japanese final. But I shall study hard (or try my best to do so) and we'll see...
My first final was for my Folklore class. I think I was pretty brilliant with it. I wrote, for the short essay section, 3 pages on how Rhiannon (from the 1st Branch of the Mabinogion) and Branwen (from the 2nd Branch of the Mabinogion) compare in light of the motif of the Calumniated Wife. I concluded that Branwen had to die at the end of her tale because she spoke out against the injustice done to her and that is totally unacceptable in Medieval Welsh society (I do not agree with this view in the slightest, especially since Branwen was humiliated and dishonoured for the DUMBEST reasons!!! But that is how the story goes and I cannot change that...) Anyways: I think my essay was bloody well brilliant...
But not as brilliant as essay #2, which was 6 pages single spaced about how right speech is applied in the 3rd and 4th Branches of the Mabinogi, as well as in the Tain and in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. I argued about how fairies and folk of the Otherworld will use words and loopholes in speech against humans and how this can be avoided by right speech, and also that right speech spoken by humans can take advantage of loopholes in fairy speech to turn the tables against them.
*Sigh* God, am I good! ^___^
(I might have been completely rubbish, but I like to think that was not the case...)
Now I still have a Victorian Lit essay to write... *brain melts* I don't WANT to!!! *throws a tantrum* I am very sorry, but the texts we have to read a bloody BORING! (Venting done, thanks for your patience.)
And yesterday was the formal. Wonderful, wonderful Savoy Formal! It was really, truly great fun!! The food was a little scarce, but it was otherwise fantastic! We went to an art gallery where we danced and had food. And, of course, everyone was dressed up and glamed up to the utmost! I had the greatest trouble getting my hair right: for the second year in a row, we've had positively rotten weather for the formal! And what is the result of bad weather?? Frizzy hair! I wanted some light curls in my hair, so I slept on some cheap foam rollers from the dollar store (that's what happens when you don't have heat tools...) and it worked really well. Except that all the humidity made the beautiful, even curls frizz halfway through the day and, by evening, I had so many flyaway frizzies, I was sorely tempted to just shave off my hair! But after pouring a couple of ounces of hairspray into the palms of my hands and running that over my hair, I was able to flatten the frizz. I ended up with an easy updo (with some light finger waves) and a cute fascinator. I also had a gorgeous dress which feels light as air and has (I found that out when the formal came to a close) POCKETS!! It's awesome! Vanessa is the one who found the dress for me, so I am very grateful to her. Oh, and, if you must know, Michael looked super handsome in a navy pin-striped suit! (God, I love this man!)
Conclusion: great formal! It was amazing! And everyone looked stunning!
And now, the grand finale... Doctor Who!! I saw the third episode of the 5th season today. The Doctor meets Winston Churchill!! During the London Blitz!! >w< *squee* It was an awesome encounter! The whole episode is like Star Wars meets Sky Captain, but with the Doctor (which automatically makes it better written). It's great fun and fantastic! I thoroughly enjoyed it!! ---Spoiler Alert--- The new Daleks are really funny: their paint jobs make them look like they're straight from a Smarties box!! XD
So, three cheers for the Doctor! I'm looking forward to next week!! *fangirl squee* I love this show! I found it to be my life support (aside from Michael) during eggzaminashun time!
So, I hope I've allowed you to catch up (and that you, dear blog, haven't missed me too much!) and more will be coming soon! But not before Wednesday. Wednesday is my huge-ass-evil-massive-three-hour-exam-of-doom Japanese final... until then... I guess all we can do is pray! *sweatdrop* Until then!
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
So... Michael and I had a mouse in our apartment. Not mice. Just the one mouse. How do we know it was just the one? Well, we cleaned up our living room and found a) no holes or any way the mouse could have entered, and b) no mouse droppings, nest, resting area of any kind. The mouse took to hiding in the heater when we chased it, but there was no sign of it being an inhabitant of the heater for more than an hour or so...
So the mouse was new to the apartment. It had just appeared, about a week ago, out of the blue. I suspect that it scuttled in through the front door, unnoticed, because whoever opened the door was looking elsewhere, and hid immediately. Our good friend Margaret thinks that may be the case too.
Anyways, the mouse was trapped. Proof that it could not hide very well in our apartment is that it had to travel out in the open. Never traveling inside walls or anything. It had to walk right through the center of the living room to get anywhere. I felt really sorry for the little thing. It was extremely frightened and trapped... We actually tried to catch it several ways (one of them was to take a glass and catch the mouse inside it so that we may take it outside) and, on one occasion, managed to get really close to it. It was extremely uber-cute! Without the tail, it was, what, an inch long? It had cute little round ears and beady little eyes and looked incredibly well groomed (for a moment, I thought it might be an escaped pet-mouse).
Anyways, after trying to scare it off and giving the mouse 36 hours to find its way back out of our apartment, we settled for buying traps. I did not want to. The mouse was so cute and I hate killing things! (Except for spiders, but that's because spiders have no soul!) But Michael said we did not have a choice. So we set out to buy traps. There was just one problem: no one sold any bloody traps! Not even the Shopper's Drug Mart and I swear I had seen mouse traps on display there just two weeks prior! We also went to Depaneurs and Super Markets... no where downtown had the stupid things!
So I hunted for the nearest renovation/home hardware store on google. The closest thing was a Canadian Tire at the Alexis Nihon center. So there I went the next day, after my photoshoot, to buy traps. There was quite a variety: "quick kill," "plug into the wall traps," "sure kill," "rodent repellents" etc. The more I looked, the queasier I felt and the more sorry I felt for the poor little mouse too. Michael and I had taken a tendency to talk to the empty space in our apartment and announce loudly: "Mister Mousey! Please go away! We don't want to kill you!" ... Anyways, there were the good old traditional (but incredibly gruesome) wooden traps by Victor. My mum used those in the basement at home when we had mice, so I knew those worked, and they were dirt cheap. Then there was also a selection of "living traps" which would catch the mouse alive and allow it to be released. I bought three of those and two killer ones.
I got home and we set up the "living traps" only. I told Michael I really did not feel like killing the poor Mister Mousey... I find those traps waaaay too gruesome! So we said we'd start with the live traps and see what happens. For a full 24 hours following the setting of the traps, there was peace. No Mr. Mousey crossing the living room at all. We almost thought he'd left...
But the next day, he came back in full force, scuttling back and forth from behind the oven to his safe-place in the electrical heater. Several times, the mouse passed right beside the live traps, giving us an "I know what you're up to and I'm not falling for it" look. I was starting to really wish it would just get into a trap and it would be over with.
Then, last night, Michael got tired of it and decided to set our killing traps. Upon my request, he also moved the living traps to more strategic locations, as I hoped we could catch it alive and not kill it. Well, barely 5 minutes after Michael had set the traps, I heard the appalling 'CRACK' of one of the death traps. As I had been walking through the apartment, I hoped, for just a second, that I had set it off accidentally by making the floorboards move. Michael checked. The mouse was dead. I did not look - I could not bring myself to do it. I went to take a long, long bath instead.
Stupid little Mr. Mousey! We gave you a chance! Why did you have to avoid the living traps successfully for 3 days, but you got caught by a lethal one in less than 5 minutes? WHY?!! *Sigh* I really feel bad for the little creature. We've left some more traps up, just in case there are more mice, but all seems calm now...
Requiescat in Pacem, Mr. Mousey!
P.S. Mice can jump FAR!! (it jumped off the stove and back into the living room, that's about 3 feet of distance!)
P.S. II - Michael has caught a bad cold. Again. Poor thing: it seems he catches a cold once a month... once every two months, if he's lucky! He seems prone to catching them. So now I've got to put up with a man-cold again! *sigh*... (lol) Ah, the disadvantages of living with a man! XD
Sunday, April 11, 2010
Saturday, April 10, 2010
Two Victorian "lingerie" shots... I did my own hair and make-up. I'm quite proud of how it turned out! And obviously my favourite corset...
Friday, April 9, 2010
In other forms of distraction, whilst waiting for Sunday, impatiently waiting for the newest Doctor Who episode, I decided to distract myself and watch Torchwood. Torchwood is basically a spin-off from Doctor Who, featuring the lovely John Barrowman (who, despite being from Glasgow, actually articulates!) as Captain Jack Harkness; the man who seduces anything gorgeous. Anyways, I decided to watch it because I find John Barrowman hot, though I think I might prefer David Tennant (he has such a wonderful smile!). ... okay, quit fantasising about either of them and write, Naria!
So, my opinion on Torchwood... It has some good bits, interesting details. I like the fact that they do not only ever confront aliens. They also have to face other things, like the ugliness of human nature and people just turning into psychos... and faeries/mara (which, for once, are not justified by alien activity). So yeah, I really like that aspect of Torchwood. However, I hate the main character, Gwen, who, on top of having a dreadful dialect, has a gap between her teeth that would give Madonna a run for her money!! Now, I wouldn't mind so much that the main character of the series is so terrible if the show had less sex in it. Don't get me wrong: I love sexy shows! But in order for a show to be sexy, you want the GOOD looking people to be doing it!! The gap-toothed lady just doesn't cut it for me and all the romance scenes involving her do nothing for me but cause an exasperated eye-roll. I mean, I want to see BARROWMAN naked! Instead they show all these other unattractive guys in bed!!! I've watched up to episode 11 and still no sexy Jack Harkness doing sexy stuff... He's got lots of cool lines and that's about it!! It's like Russel T. Davies was really desperate when he created the show and got rid of some of his sex drive writing it... but he botched it. He forgot to give Jack the sexy parts and instead gave them all to Gwen... lame! So I'm looking forward to the next Who episode. Much more fun in general. Though I still think I'll end up watching all of Torchwood, because that's the sort of thing I do.
Finally, depending on what my plans will be for the summer, I have found a reasonable distraction... Should work keep me here in Montreal, I found where I might go during my spare time to have some fun. First of all, I have quite a few friends sticking around in Montreal this year, so there'll be plenty of get-togethers, hopefully. Then I'll move into the new apartment in June. I am definately planning a trip to a theme park, whether La Ronde or Canada's Wonderland will depend... though I would LOVE to see Canada's Wonderland, as I've never been. Naturally, Michael and I will go see Les Miserables (yes! the kick-ass, beautiful musical!) with my mum (I can't wait!!). And lastly, a cool distraction, should I have the time, would be to see Totem. Totem is a Cirque du Soleil show that has pitched it's tent in the Old Port. I don't think Michael has ever seen a Cirque perfomance (not live at least) and I will always remember the one I saw in the Old Port, a few years back. It was AMAZING! I love the MUSIC they use and how they incorporate theater and storylines into their circus! Though, I also remember that an acrobat attempted a jump when I went to see it, and she fell pretty badly (had to be carried off stage, poor thing, but the show went on). Anyways, on my last flight to Toronto, I also saw the official Alegria performance (the filmed version of it). It is FANTASTIC! I've always loved the music to Alegria since it came out (I have it on a CD somewhere) and the costumes are fabulous! Though there was a girl in Alegria, a blue-haired asian, who did really creepy contortions! She could, literally, sit with her bum on her head. It's kinda scary and gross and it leads me to the conclusion that Asians who do circus, like her, have no bones, only muscles and cartilage, lol! And there was also an awesome hoola-hoop act in Alegria! I love that act! First of all because I can't manage to keep one hoola-hoop up for more than three seconds and this girl was using 4 simultaneously on different limbs. Secondly, she had a great choreography and moved like a dancer. It was so ethereal, almost alien. I suppose that her skill will probably be more useful than other circus skills later on, because you can get a job dancing and doing choreography a lot even if you are not in shape for circus anymore... I think. Anyways... I digress. I should look into the ticket pricing. It looks fun. Their poster is great! It was all over the metro (which is what sparked the idea).
Anyways, that's it. Tomorrow will be official essay writing day. I had a fabulous photoshoot this afternoon (before I forget to tell you!) and I will post photos soon!
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Today's subject was Robin Hood. The oh-so-famous, still debated over, roguish archer, Robin Hood (a.k.a. Robin of Locksley). When I say debated over, I mean it: there is such a thing as the Robin Hood society trying to determine whether Mr. Take-from-the-rich-and-give-to-the-poor actually existed or not. Jeez... what a waste of medievalist intellect. Who cares if he's real?! The stories are fun aren't they? That's all that matters!
Okay... I'm digressing...
So, it turns out that cosplay is not an invention of the modern day. Through today's class, we discovered that 16th century English courts LOVED to dress up like "the olden days." This means the Dark Ages and any time period before their own. Certain kings were famous for organizing jousting matches a la old-style, traditional, courtly knight. They had fun boasting about their nobility by pretending to be some feudal lord presiding over a match for the honour of some knight or other. So guess what? The beginning of Ren. Faires? It all started in the actual Renaissance! I squeed in class. I actually got distracted from my multi-tasking of note-taking and facebooking by what the teacher said about Renaissance people in early Medieval getup. Total, utter squee.
But, and here's the best part, COSPLAY finds it's origins at the same time period too. Now, obviously, it had nothing to do with the Anime Cosplay: Japan was not only too far off and a group of isolated islands that were hard to reach for Europeans, but the Japanese also wanted nothing to do with any Europeans and potential "conquerors." So Anime Cosplay would have to wait for a few centuries. But, if you are like me, and you decide to define Cosplay by: "doning costumes and attire that are particular to a specific character - usually anime - but also tv series, and novels in general" then Cosplay it was back then too.
For yes, in 16th century England, people dressed up as Robin Hood!! *Insert fangirl squee here* King Henry VIII of England was absolutely famous for his costume parties and his Robin Hood games. These games included stuff like archery contests and other activities (possibly activities from the Greenwood) that take place in the Robin Hood texts and legends. So King Henry VIII cosplayed! Your Majesty Henry Tudor, you're only becoming steadily and ever more awesome to my fangirlish eyes! No matter that you executed two wives (including Ann Boleyn... my favourite queen of England) - you still rock the socks off all the other European kingdoms of the time! Even today, I'm sure you'd kick some serious ass... though you'd have to get used to paying alimony rather than executing your wives.
So yeah. This was my very fun discovery of the day that I just HAD to share. I have always known that in Henry Tudor's day, courtly activities were numerous and included a lot of costume parties (especially in the days of dear queen Ann Boleyn, as she was a famous hostess of parties and - so say the books and the poets - a brilliant soprano singer). However, that he hosted Robin Hood parties that meant you had to dress up and renact the story is just AWESOME! Henry VIII is basically the precursor of any book-convention or Star-Trek convention. His parties attracted quite a few nobles in his day and were really big events... Ah... Tudors... How I wish I had lived in your day!!! *sigh*
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
Chapter 17 - In which a dragon was trained, awkwardness occurred and speaking three languages has its advantages
So here's the order of what actually happened today:
1 - Awkwardness occurred (around 10:25 a.m. this morning)
2 - Speaking three languages has its advantages (at about 4:00 p.m.)
3 - A dragon was trained (at 7:00 p.m.)
So lets begin with the awkwardness. First, I must explain that, next week, we have a short skit to present for Japanese class. Now, my team has become rather infamous in the class for being completely and utterly ridiculous. Last time, we did a pokemon skit and I was playing a crazy water pokemon trainer with huge pigtails... it was a blast!! This time around I am an over-the-top crazy hostess in a Maid Cafe (and I will be wearing my 7 inch platform heels for the occasion... this has a point, just wait for it). The scenario is that I fall in love with a guest to the cafe, but my ex-boyfriend shows up. My character broke up with him because he's far too short for my tastes (that's why the 7 inch heels will be required to make me about a foot taller than my teammates). Anyways, at the end of the skit we reconcile and we decided to make that obvious. Now, you must understand that it's an all-girls team and so we'd feel a little awkward actually kissing. My teammate suggested a mere hug, whereas I suggested a "theatrical" kiss. The stage kissing is the oldest trick in the book: place your thumb against victims lips and kiss your thumb. Your lips have never touched, but it looks quite realistic. I decided to demonstrate the theatrical kiss to one of my teammates before class to show what it looked like when the Japanese teacher walked in on our practice session. Biggest. Stare. Ever. We burst out laughing and went beet-red. We tried to explain that nothing actually happened, but, judging by her nod, I don't think she believed us... And so, awkwardness ensued. I cannot tell you how awkward it is to be caught fake-kissing another girl by a prof who has NO clue of what's going on....!!!! I was very subdued in Japanese class as a result.
When I got home, I took a healthy nap (though I should probably have studied Japanese instead), and then I got a call from my mum about applying for a summer job in Germany. She actually found a few carreer opportunities in Germany for me, one of which is summer camp work at a vacation spot. The advantage of this is that it is only 100 km away from Weimar, which is where Michael will be training at his summer programme. Meaning that, should I get the job, I can see Michael every weekend!! That would just be wonderful! And housing would be paid too!! I am really enthusiastic about this job idea, especially as I believe my capacity to express myself fluently in three languages will be a clear advantage for this post. Honestly: thank God my parents raised me to be fully trilingual! Not only is it a huge advantage for career opportunities such as these (and ever better job opportunities later on), but Michael also finds my use of three languages very sexy! ;-D (So many great advantages to linguistics, eh? You never know what men find hot! ^__^ ) Being trilingual also helps me when learning new languages, as I have a very nimble tongue for foreign words and can phonetically immitate all sorts of pronounciations. Unfortunately, it doesn't give me an innate grasp on grammar (which is why Japanese is getting me so down). But it is just amazing how much stuff I can pronounce really well without knowing a word of what I'm saying... Viva being trilingual! I love it! :P
Now... you must wonder how training a dragon comes into all this (that - or you already know the answer). I went to see new Dreamworks animation movie, How To Train Your Dragon, in IMAX 3D today (shut up! I know I should have studied Japanese! Now get off my back!). It was FANTASTIC!! I believe it is probably the best movie I have seen in theaters so far this year!! It is really cute and amazingly animated. The textures are incredibly real, but the animation does not attempt to be realistic in the slightest. Also, it takes place in a Viking village. Oh, yeah. My brother would love this movie: Vikings and bearded men. The movie also features the voice talents of Gerard Butler and David Tennant (OMG! my two favourite Scotsmen!! *squee* Too bad David Tennant has only 4 lines). I don't want to say too much about it, because people should go out and see this movie. Seriously: it's worth it! But it's super cute and really funny!! The dragons are waaay to cute to resist: they're like giant scaly cats!! You should see their reactions to catnip! XD And the movie is full of lines such as: "This is my village, where it snows for 9 months and it hails during the 3 other months. The food that grows here is tough and tasteless, and the people that grow here... even more so." Conclusion... WATCH IT! It's great and super fun and the dragon designs are just too hilarious! You will enjoy it. And someone should force my brother to see it... I mean, it fits right in to his Viking obsession!!
That's all. Except that now I really REALLY want a Night Fury Dragon!! *covet*
Monday, April 5, 2010
I went to all of Michael's Easter services in church. They were really nice: on Sunday, they sang the Halleluja chorus from Haendel's Messiah. It made me happy. But I have to say that the Maundy Thursday one, on top of being rather depressing (all about the last supper and death and with only very few attendees to the service), gave me the creeps. They turned off all the lights in the church, and churches have lots of creepy dark corners, and then the organ player began playing loud dissonant notes expressing the "agony in Gethsemane"... it was SUPER CREEPY! I truly expected a vampire to jump out at me... or some creepy guy with a knife that would stab the person in the row in front of him, or something... Honestly, it seemed directly taken from Matthew Gregory Lewis' The Monk!! Waaaay to gothic to make you feel comfortable!
But, aside from that, I really had a great time! We went to a couple of family parties thrown by my family and Michael was very on-demand for singing last night. I think he enjoyed it. And the food was absolutely delightful!
However, on the way to the first party (on Sunday), my darling baby brother (of no less than 17) decided to act really smart again. He rolled down his window as we were driving through Montreal and poked out his head and made some dumb grimace at a police car. I guess the policeman must have had a terrible day, because he wasn't happy. He rolled up beside us and this is the conversation that ensued:
Policeman - "Does your son have a problem?"
Sandra and my dad *completely befuddled, as they didn't see my brother's grimace* - "No, officer. Why do you ask?"
Policeman - "Because he seems to have a problem with the police; he was making faces at us."
Sandra - "Oh? Do you want to keep him then? We wouldn't mind!"
At which the cop said no and continued his way. But I can't BELIEVE my brother is still doing immature stuff like that! Seriously, you'd think he's five! And all he was whining about all the rest of the way to the party was about how "the cops are fascist" and "is this not a free country anymore, can I not do what I want?!" I am tired of hearing those lines!!!
God, it's good to vent!
And today, I discovered the most unsatisfactory food on the planet. Crab. Michael will disagree with me when I say it is unsatisfying, but if you really think about it, it is very true. I am NOT saying that crab is not delicious. In fact, it is totally scrumptious! However, it is too much work for far too little food! Honestly! You're hacking and pulling and cracking the bloody crustacian apart only to get a very small amount of its meat! How dumb is that? I mean, you'd need to eat about ten of these things to get a full stomach if you decide to eat crab unaccompanied by bread or anything... Oh, and another annoying thing with crab: eating it means you're ready to lose all of your self-respect. Why do I say that? Because picking and prying it apart means you get sprayed with crab juices and your fingers become very smelly. I doubt my glasses will ever be clean again after this meal... Again, I do not say it wasn't delicious: I am saying it is a disappointing meal because you do not get properly rewarded for all the effort you put into obtaining the bloody sustenance!!
Crab... you have cause an inner battle for me... I do not know whether to love or hate you: you taste yummy, but you make my meal hell!
So that's it. I won't describe the parties and tell you how all the aunts and uncles and cousins are doing. Suffice to say that they are doing well. This post will be 10 pages long before I even went through half the details.
So that'll be it for today.
Oh, and I am sorry if some of you think I update too much too often. I just have a lot to say. What can I say? In my defence, it also helps keep people I love (yes, you mum!) updated about what's going on in my life... and I suppose it means that I am not a shallow person with little to say... right? Right.
Good night. And good luck! :D
Saturday, April 3, 2010
Alright, my grammatically incorrect phrasing is done now. ;-P
So, today, the day started with a wonderful photoshoot. It was a lot of fun!! I got to wear my wonderful faux-snakeskin dress and I got to pretend to be a superhero! And Michael got to dress up as the cutest explorer ever (move over Shia Laboeuf for the new, improved version of Indiana Jones' son!! XD )... And the photographer had the cutest cat ever!! It's name was Fritz in the name of Fritz Lang. It was a black and white kitteh, with an entirely black face, save for the whiskers and it's "lips" which made it look like it had an epic milk-moustache! It was a really playful and curious cat! It made me squee a great deal...
After the photoshoot, we headed out for food, to a place called Tequila Tacos. It is a tiny (and I mean TINY - only about 10 tables) Mexican restaurant. We had absolutely to-die-for-delicous tacos and I had a Pina Colada with a dash of Midori in it. YUMMY!!!! It was sooooooo delicious! My taste buds went into a Mexican Mariachi dance!! And it just made me think: cocktails are better enjoyed in the summer. No, honestly: this explains why I drink so little alcohol in the winter. Cocktails just REQUIRE warm weather, sexy high heals and glaring sunlight. They are so refreshing and remind you of the tropic so much that, should you have one in winter, you would immediately sink into a huge depression because you're too broke to afford the ticket for that next flight to Costa Rica. ... Actually, my mouth still waters at the thought of the food and drink from this afternoon...
Then we had a nap at home (because we did get up horribly early for the photoshoot) and we woke up just in time to go to the "Eleventh Doctor Premier Party." Indeed, one of our good friends planned a little get-together, all in the honour of this great, awesome, out of this world, kick-ass show. Now... I was very concerned before we started. Following all appearances, this new, young bow-tie-wearing Doctor would not be able to live up to David Tennant's standard as the Doctor and that the show would go downhill too quickly and die. I WAS SO WRONG!!! It was AMAZING! This new Doctor (though not in the least equipped with David Tennant's good looks) is charming, literally BURSTING with energy, HILARIOUSLY funny and, as every doctor is, a bloody genuis. The new companion is fun, and super cute and a redhead... What can go wrong?? This episode was well written and absolutely a JOY to watch!! The new Doctor enjoys his fishsticks dipped in custard cream by the way... (eeewwww!!)
So yeah - absolutely a wonderful, great episode! I feel really bad about how harshly we judged Mr. Matt Smith (the new doctor) before we saw the show... He did have extremely big shoes to fill, but he rose to the challenge extremely well and did admirably. I am now looking forward to the next episodes (next one comes out next Sunday... I can't wait!) The next episodes look fabulous... in the short preview they gave of the rest of the season it looks a) positively hilarious, and b) full of awesome storylines!! Here are only a few: Van Gogh, Stonehenge, the return of the "Blink" angels, some form of vampire-aliens, cybermen, and, of course, our beloved Daleks (exterminate!!).
If you get the chance, WATCH the new Doctor Who!! It is really worth it and totally funny! The episode is called "The Eleventh Hour" and it is the first epsiode of season 5. Today was the first air date.
And the get-together ended with me in total fangirl mode over a book called "The Tudor Tailor." I found out about it via a British costuming website and it can only be ordered online here... But today, I finally laid my hands on it. Victoria, the wonderful person who organized the party, had borrowed it from a library!!! It is truly an amazing book! I squeed very muchly (yes, "muchly").
So yeah. That's it for the news today... YAY FOR DOCTOR WHO!!! I WANT TO SEE MOOOOOORE!!!
*Edit: for those who believe Matt Smith still has to work hard to really be the doctor, I'd like them to consider that a) though David Tennant is absolutely awesome and wonderful, filling his shoes is hard when you loved the wonderful scotsman, so give Mr. Smith a break...
and b) He wouldn't have been chosen for this role if he wasn't capable of doing it! Get used to it!
P.S. Why are interesting discoveries only made when you are about to leave someplace? We are officially moving out of out apartment, and it turns out that we found out, on Thursday night, that the concierge of our apartment is actually an AMAZING self-taught painter!! Here's a picture for you all to see:
Note: his name is Raymond Mayland (I hope I spelled it right), the painting is called "Dream II" All credits go to him.
The concierge lent it to us, in the hope that it will get him some more exposure and that he will be able to sell some of his artwork. His abstract work is absolutely stunning! He gave us a little exhibit. It was absolutely wonderful! He's got an amazing eye! Too bad we didn't know this before!!
Thursday, April 1, 2010
(... I didn't just write that, did I? Hold on... yes... I did.)
Okay, so I had this ueber wacky dream last night. I swear, it sort of made me giggle in my sleep it was so odd! The funniest bit was that I was utterly convinced it was reality until I woke up in bed! And now you're all thinking: "get to the point, you silly girl who writes too much" so I shall indulge you.
In my dream, I was dating Michael like I am now... Except that I was in high school. My high school. My beloved, uniform-wearing Academy, where I hated the guts of three-quarter of the students for a period of six years. Anyhow... I was sitting at a table in the school cafeteria (THE school cafeteria, line with windows on either side, looking out on the playing field, the place that was a former dance studio...). I was wearing the dark green plaid skirt, the pale-blue oxford shirt and the ugly navy polyester cardigan. Even my hair was short, like back in the old days! Odd thing was that Michael was there with me. In high school. Dating me.
Now, this may not strike anyone as odd... yet. The thing was, in my dream, Michael's ex showed up. Not his real ex. Some nondescript, bland and boring brunette, the type of girl I used to hate in high school; the type of girl whose name you're not likely to remember... that was his girlfriend in this dream. She was just another typical high school girl that my imagination fashioned for the sake of the dream. Anyways, she was also a student at the Academy, for she was wearing the same uniform, though she was wearing it in the way that I used to consider "pompous and slutty".
Here comes the funny part. The ex-girlfriend sat down at the table with both of us, looking incredibly moody and in a huff. She started bad mouthing me about how I stole her boyfriend, etc. For some reason, Michael was very porcelain-doll-like in this dream: he just sat there, smiling an empty smile, not noticing anyone and unaware that two girls were fighting over his affections. Michael, if you read this, it's nothing against you: I think you were just... an accessory to the dream - like a very, very minor character. (I'm sorry!)
But back to the foul-mouthed ex. So she started ranting about me and insulting me and calling me names. I started to get really tired of her and it could potentially have degenerated into a cat fight. Not the case. Exasperated, I opened the little knapsack I had with me (now this is REALLY weird because it was so... well, SMALL! I usually always carry around an oversized heavy schoolbag!). I started rummaging inside the little bag to see if I could find anything that would shut her up (because whatever was in the knapsack was the obvious solution). I was mostly thinking about throwing something at her head. But the only things inside the bag were a pen and a flyer add for a "Miss Sixty" razor (WTF?? seriously!).
So I looked up at the girl and I smiled my nicest smile. I cut accross her ramblings and said: "I feel like acting sixty!" (which seemed a perfectly normal thing to say at the time) The girl cringed with dread when I pulled out the pen and the paper... but I just started scribbling down notes, completely unrelated to the situation, blissfully ignoring her... Because scribbles are the obvious solution against people who bad-mouth you...??? *puzzled look* And still, I was quite CONVINCED that this was reality. This seemed like a perfectly natural reaction to the situation. In the dream, I felt quite proud of my coolness and how I had handled the situation.
And then I woke up. Turns out I had onlly been dozing for a grand total of... 10 minutes. *sigh*
Oh, and as for going to Ottawa today - scratch taht. No; it's not because Ottawa is tiny and too far away to be appealing to me at six in the bloody morning that I didn't go. This morning, I recieved a phone call from my mum. She's really ill and has a bad fever. I will admit I'm a little concerned and I hope she gets better soon! Anyways, she can't go through with the two hour drive to Ottawa. It's not worth getting into a car accident for the sake of a bleeding passport (for those who didn't know: I need to get to Ottawa to get my passport renewed... fun times!)
In other news... I still haven't bought my fabric for the Erica Fontaine costume. I soooo want to work on the costume, but I am sooooo broke! It makes me very sad.
And as for essays... one of them is FINALLY done!! Three more essays to go! Two for Anime class (I'll be writing one about the use of genre in Slayers Next and one about the use of media/communication/technology in Gundam Seed), and another one for Victorian Lit. The Victorian Lit topics are so boring that I won't bother writing them down, else your brains will go to mush, dear readers - like mine did upon reading the topic. On top of the essays, I still have four exams and one 12 minute Japanese skit to go through. Then my semester will be over at last. *SIGH* I can't wait. It seems soooo loooooong! *cries* Needless to say, I'm tired of this semester: it's been a really crappy one and it's time for some vacation!
Speaking of vacation... I am FINALLY going back to Germany! We are planning the trip and it turns out that it is actually happening!!Michael and I will be leaving on April 30th and returning toward the middle of May! It will be great!!
And Michael will be RETURNING to Germany in August (lucky bastard)!! He got into a really cool summer programme in Weimar, Germany, where he score a lead role for the Mozart Opera, Cosi Fan Tutte. Not only that, he even got himself a good scholarship for it!! HUZZAH, MICHAEL!! I am really proud of him: the programme people obviously really want him!
Okay. Enough type now. Back to bed for me. Why? Because it's 5:30 in the freakin' morning and I barely slept (I couldn't sleep at all... fell into the weird dream doze around 4:00-ish). So I'm going to crash into bed and screw the rules of attendance policies - if I miss class, NOT my fault. Blame my brain for keeping me awake all night.
My typing is getting ridiculous. Get off the computer, Naria! GO TO BED!
Good day to all!