Thursday, May 21, 2009

We Go On

We Go On

I was singing this as walking to work today. Not loudly, just slightly louder than a hum.

"With the stillness of the night
there comes a time to understand
to reach out and touch tomorrow
take the future in our hand

We can see a new horizon
built on all that we have done
and our dreams begin another
thousand circles 'round the sun

We go on
to the joy and through the tears
We go on
to discover new frontiers
Moving on
with the current of the years

We go on
moving forward, now as one
Moving on
with a spirit born to run
Ever on
with each rising sun

To a new day
We go on

We go on "

It gives me happy happy memories of pop corn, cheese soup, maple almond fudge, beer, and ice wine.
It's sunny today and supposed to be 24C. Summer?! oooh, giddy.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Extra time

Today while watching the telie, post attempted room cleaning, I got to thinking about spare time. I had much of it this weekend. I kind of feel like I wasted the long weekend, I didn't accomplish very much other than Jen's Longest Bike Adventure of the year, and obtaining some ridiculously delightful tan lines.

Society has so much free time now. I'm sure some would argue otherwise, but the things that keep us busy are often by choice. When putting my dishes into the dish washer I thought about how processes have changed with innovation and invention. My dishes are sitting in the dishwasher waiting for one of the 223-mates to press 'start' on the machine after it is full, my laundry was washing itself in the washing machine, and I was watching the telie. Had this been 100 years ago, my evening would have been quite different. The dishes would have been washed by me (or my well trained children), I would have been handwashing my clothes, and obviously not watching television. Granted, I could stil do these things now, but tonight I chose not to. Some clothing I do wash by hand (I won't even bother telling you how un-often these items get washed), and I do wash dishes by hand sometimes. I never put pots or pans in the dishwasher - take up too much room.

I don't like feeling unproductive. I feel like when there is a long weekend I should accomplish great things, or leave the Isle. PEI has been dragging me down a wee bit lately. I love the novelty of living on a small island, but sometimes I crave a little more in variety and feel very landlocked. That being said, I love the water and love knowing it's so close.

On the other other other hand (have I told you how many hands I have?), sometimes the water seem restricting. While PEI as a whole is somewhat shaped like a banana on it's side with the left end tipped a bit higher, Ch'town itself is a wee bit of a peninsula... or something. Water to the south (Ch'town Harbour), water to the east (Hillsborough River), water to the west (North [York] River). Go, look it up on Google Maps. I will wait for your return.

Granted the waterways to the east and west aren't that large but bleh.

On Saturday I joined a very small group and we biked from Charlottetown up to the north shore (all through Stanhope, through the National Park, then back to Ch'town) - about a 60-km adventure. Makes you realise how small PEI is though. That being said, that's a north-south ride... you can go much further going east or west.

Blah blah blah. Point of the entire thing is: I'm bored. It's been gloomy the past two days. A wise man told Ewan McGregor, who then told me, (via his book, sadly, not directly,) that rain is okay, as long as you don't let it rain in your head. I wish I had remembered that earlier, very good advise.

I have a rather stiff/sore neck from... something.

I must return to work tomorrow. I'm craving something bigger than that. My contract finishes in two weeks.


Oh, Monday night blahs. Last May long weekend I biked across the entire province.

I'm heading to America-land and Upper Canada soon. That'll be good :)

Sometimes I wonder if my expectations for life are too high. I want a job I love, I want to be on vacation for eleven months of the year, I want a bloke that thinks I'm wonderful (and vice versa), I want to explore, I want to learn, I want to help people, I want what I do to make others smile... perhaps the secret to getting what you want is to give.

Sometimes I get frustrated that there is so much that I do not know. There is also so much I once knew but do not know any longer. I don't remember how to use a graphing calculator, I don't remember the two ways one can amortize fixed assets (straight-line versus... something that has to do with a percent rather than fixed number), I don't remember how to speak Spanish very well. I understand you lose knowledge when you don't use it, but what am I putting into the newly emptied compartments? Something else? Which is better - the old or the new?

Somewhat related, I'm convinced spellcheck is making me stupid, particularly in programs such a Microsoft Word that autocorrect common spelling mistakes.

I was thinking about typewriters a few days ago. Now obscelete, but image at one point in your life being presented with a typewriter. The mass production of hand writing. You somewhat become a bit more like everyone else, for everyone has the same face for their writing.

I need inspiration. Or more so, I need to inspire myself.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

¡ Que dia! π

It just popped into my head:

What defines cheating in a relationship that was not formally established to be a relationship, was not declared as real/official, but was *exactly* like a boyfriend/girlfriend relationship with utterances of love and almost constant companionship? What is safely to be assumed an unwritten rule?

Anyway. That's pretty much all that needs to be said. Dwelling on the past is the negative version of 'reflecting on the past'. I feel sorry for the third party involved on the far other side of this great nation. I'm going to assume she has no idea (I really don't know?), at least I had a 99.9% hunch which turned out to be correct, and the benefit of it being more difficult to lie directly to one's face rather than via script or a faceless phone call.

It helps that my intuition is that of a super hero :) it's interesting knowing something is happening that you are not supposed to know about, and whether it is something good or bad. If good, exciting! If bad... how is one to address it? Wait til it blows up in your face? Proactive vs. reactive. I guess it's a matter of preference, put it off and deal with the consequences later, or put on a fake front for awhile and embrace the present.

When it comes to addressing conflict, I am an EXPERT at avoiding it. Eww, conflict! Emotions! Shudder!


It's lunch time. I have no lunch. I meant to wander to the grocery store this am but just plan ol' forgot.

Things I did today that were smart/good:
  • Corrected someone in his use of weighted averages vs. non-weighted averages.
  • Eyeliner: Lined my top lid, THEN the bottom lid. I always forget and end up smudging the bottom when doing the top.
  • Got to work at 8:30!
  • Used a straw to make drinking water "more fun". (I never drink enough water.)
  • Found an error in a graph.
  • Didn't forget to bring anything to work! (I think... so far.)
  • No visits to the vending machine or the $.25-candy machines (so far).
  • Refrained from cursing out loud. I have a pottymouth co-worker. It's contagious.

Things I am Thinking About:
  • My rumbly tummy and why eating seems to have slowed incredibly in the past few days?
  • Working faster to finish my report so I can leeeeeaaaaaave.
  • My poor bike locked up outside, yearning to be ridden in the glorious sunshine.
  • How I could be working on my report instead of writing this... Hmm.
  • How my work ethic is comparable to that of magnifying-glass-fried ant.
  • The difficulties that come with explaining the gloriousness of KFC chicken skin to a vegetarian.(No offense, Jannie :) )
  • My Dr. said my dark hair and skin makes me look me European. (We were talking about in-grown hairs due to an obvious tweezer wound that came from attempting to dig a hair out close to my belly button. Lesson learned: don't do that.)
  • BK: it often smells so disgustingly good when I bike by in the am.
  • Beer: I need a detox. via wine? Wine on warm patio is just not the same though.
  • Long weekend!!!
  • I'm going on an adventure soon in America-land and Upper Canada.
  • My wit is been sorely lacking lately. Perhaps it is napping?
  • Ummm, back to work.
  • I should write children's novels!
"A morning shower is like baptizing your day." - Paul Lewis

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Oh, Y Chromozone


Usually I try to sound relatively intelligent and mature on this, especially as I tend to forget other people may, you know, read this.

But I don't care right now.

Male population: I don't understand you. Not all of you, but a few of you that keep pushing back into my life. People say women are complicated, and we are, but at least you know that going into it. I'm convinced women collect thoughts in a logical manner, and then blow them out of propotion. They link them together to make conclusions. Men collect many single bits of information, but do not connect them together.

And I don't care if I sound like a jerk.

This blog has been interupted by an email from a problematic bloke.

Anyway, I'm looking for an arranged marriage. Apply in comments section. I'm easy to please. I enjoy cake, being outside, excessive spooning in pretzel-like positions, and holidays. Pissing me off can be solved by lookingly shamefully and sadly into my eyes and saying, "I'm sorry that/for ________." Bonus points for the ability to conjure up a single, dramatic tear. Also win me over with clipless bike pedals and appropriate sexy bike cleats. Investment I am unsure if I will take this summer. Bonus points if shoes are RED. (For reference, ths is the colour of the maple leaf in the Canada Flag.) Ideally you will be a male, but if you are an especially lovely woman I may consider you.

Seriously, wtf, mate.

I now present to you.... a new ability to deal with stress!

So I was thinking about currency. Again. And how world currency exchange rates used to be pegged to the US dollar. If a global currency were to take over (which will clearly not happen within the next 8,395,683.8 years), which currency would we take and what problems would be presented?

A model to base this off would be the development of the Euro. (I am special, my North American keyboard has a euro sign € !) I'm easily convinced that even 25 years ago people would not have predicted a successful amalgamation of x number of currencies (don't know actual number). The debates must had been extensive: whose currency to take? create a new one? conversion rates? where to be printed? what rate of exchange with foreign currencies? (Though I'm sure this wasn't just decided by those creating the currencies, clearly that would be a massive mess in itself.)

I lost my train of thought. In conclusion, a global currency would be very messy. The economies of the world are unequal. The governments uncooperative with different styles. Banks with different shareholders, customers, needs.

Anyway, were we to get a global currency, I would wish the different notes to reflect the culture of different continents. Rather impossible though, given the vast differences present in each continent.

Mostly I want a bill with a penguin on it. The Canadian currency is bedazzled with birds, but no penguins, due to the obvious reasons ("What do you mean this isn't Antarctica?")

My stomach is rumbly. Eating was not an activity I partook in today. The day instead was spent with zee familia, fuming, being baffled, eventually remember that drinking at least *one* glass of water would be good, booking a plane ticket, and flipping the ol' bird at the "problems" in my life.

My problems aren't big. I should specify that. But sometimes, at 1:00am, you suddenly feel like sticking your tongue out at silly things.

Really, I don't even have problems. I have food and shelter from the bitter cold, and strangers do not offer me cursed fruits of plants. Try being in a "fairytale", those kids generally have it much rougher than I. Particularly those with stepmums, who come across as pretty darn fierce.

I have to go to work soon. Where, oh where, did the evening go? Soon the sun will once again BURST through the ground and temporarily blind my eyes, while leaving my vitamin D deprived skin in heaving fits of happiness.

Rock on, Jen M[a]c, rock on.

(I'm not even going to bother proofreading this because it makes no sense, likely. But boys, I still love you and your gender. Can't we all just get along?)

oooh, lazy Mother's Day Sunday

Happy Mother's Day to my wonderful mum :)

I suddenly feel guilty but I'm not much of a card person, so I do not have a card for my mum. But here is what you must know about her: she is wonderful! She does many wonderful things for me, and always has, so much that I could never repay her. She [et papa] let me go to their house when I am down, when I am too lazy too cook, feel the need to brown my skin in the sun, or just whenever I feel like dropping in. She tried to teach me to be clean and organized, but we all know that was a lost cause to begin with. She spent countless hours with me, playing, reading, teaching, letting me "do" her hair (800 ponytails is a clear classic), and playing with her make-up. Apologies to my friends who ended up looking like clowns. Apparently less is more with blue eyeshadow, but I didn't know.

My mum also gives me permission to be an idiot by times. I very much recall in fourth-year uni, dwelling about an ex-boyfriend who apparently reallllly wanted to get back together with me. I was stressed. Turning to my mum with baffled eyes, she said, "It's a bad idea, but I can't say I wouldn't do it if I were you and your age." She was right - it was a bad idea (but doesn't really affect me in the long run), but instead of just telling me I was stupid (which she probably wanted to) she let me learn a lesson from it.

She worries about me, but never enough to tell me not to do something. When I was lonely and thinking backpacking Europe by oneself was a stupid stupid STUUUUUPID thing to do, she came and joined me, completely last minute, and I loved our mini-trip segment together. I was refueled and happily finished my trip after her departure.

I admire my mum because she is quirky, requests the oddest things for gifts ("I need lumber to rebuild the patio." "Umm..."), creative, talented, a hard worker (though me thinks she needs to slow down), is brave, and is a person with a very positive outlook. She complains much less than the average person because her glass is half full.

I like making my mum proud, because I want her to realise she did an excellent job raising me (papa too, but father's day is not for another month :) ). She always shared my accomplishments with me and was equally excited for me when good things happened.

Someday I will give my mum a granddaughter who will love her equally as much. Well, maybe I will give her one. Who knows. But she would like that because she likes the smell of babies' heads. And taking pictures of babies, which thrills me.

In conclusion, why buy a card that tells only a mere fraction of the story? The card I need has never been made.

Happy Mother's Day mum, I love yee!

I was supposed to be at your house three minutes ago... but am still in my housecoat. But I think that's okay because you were sleeping when I called... heh.

Unrelated note: I bought a fender for my bike! Advantage: helps keep me clean/dry. Disadvantage: it clips on and off. I took it off yesterday. Bike is here with me at 223. Fender is at parents'. My pavement is wet. Oh la la, skunk stripe number 48 of the year.

PS ~ I sold my car. It's been good, Wee Red, it's been good.

Friday, May 08, 2009


If you do not have a friend who is a sagittarius, I invite you to hang out with me.

Me, as a Sagittarius

Quotes to how this article is correct or where it made me giggle.

"The people born under this zodiac sign just don't know how to give compliments."

"Sagittarius people are very sharp and are an interesting fusion of humor, intellect and sizzling drive."

"A Sagittarian will usually come across as a very cheerful and pleasant person. However, he has a violent temper also, which is aroused when people try to push him around or try to get too close."

"Sagittarians are rebels at heart and adhering to social norms is not their cup of tea. They love to perform before an audience and usually seek a career in the show business. Travel excites them and religion interests them. Just like a child, a Sagittarius is naive, fearless and optimistic and dislikes responsibilities."

"Some of the most unpleasant personality traits of a Sagittarius include sarcasm, weirdness and the inability to keep a secret."

"Sagittarians have excellent memories and can remember even the smallest incidents of their lives, with the minutest of details. At the same time, they can easily forget things like where they left their car keys or wallet or handkerchief."

And this is why I am awesome and you should cleeeeeearly want to hang out with me, befriend me, adopt me, give me your citizenship, etc.

Rock on Jen M[a]c.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

If today were a weekend

This morning when I was supposed to be sitting in my office chair but was actually sitting on the 223 couch reading a magazine, I was thinking about the things I would rather do today than work.
  • Go to the library and read MANY magazines
  • Read a book
  • Ride my bike
  • Get my rear derailleur re-aligned (was going to do this before work but was discouraged by the rain)
  • Buy a rear fender
  • Put rear fender on bike
  • Learn to make sushi
  • Eat poorly made sushi (reference above bullet)
  • Start planning a new vacation
  • Devise a plan on how to start dating Wolverine
  • Watch online episodes of "Deadliest Warrior"
  • Purchase groceries that aren't candy or cereal
  • Rent and watch the three X-Men movies (research for Wolverine goal)
  • Destroy the funny blisters on my finger (I did this at work anyway)
  • Fill a deep bathtub with water
  • Sit in deep bathtub that had been filled with water
  • Feel guilty about wasting water
  • Devise a strategy to change the rainy forecast for the next few days
  • Get a tan, through sheer will powering and mental determination
  • Develop some sort of skill that will allow me to be cast in Cirque du Soleil
There is a huge possibility that I would not be able to complete this list all in one day.

On Monday night I went for my first "big" bike ride of the year (big being more than 20ish km). I went with people much fast than me. I was absolutely exhausted afterwards. Including my short commute to work and home, I biked about 50 km that day. Nothing excessive, but whoa, I didn't quite expect it to hit me that hard. The 'official' ride of my day started from Stratford and went to Cherry Valley. I borrowed a lovely road bike from Cycling PEI and went to their "beginners" road ride. I guess beginner is a very broad term as I'm pretty sure I was the only beginner/newbie. That being said, everyone was super friendly, nice, and encouraging and I look forward to the next ride!

The ride to Cherry Valley actually went over quite well. The ride back... mostly well! There was one point going up what seemed to be the Biggeset Hill on Planet PEI that I may had gotten off the bike and walked up the hill had no one been around. Big hill + head wind = Weakened Jennifer. I felt so jittery when I got off the bike after the ride. I'm not used to the odd vibrations of road bikes - the senseation of someone rattling all your bones. Riding my regular bike home afterwards (I'm such a hard-core comuter) seemed so cushiony. I got home at about 8:00 and was passed out on the couch at 9:15 and woke up at one point wondering if someone had beat me with a hockey stick while I was sleeping. Then I was thirsty and hungry, but was supposed to fast for bloodwork the following morning. No refueling for me! (Again, because I'm hardcore.)

So in weird business practice, I took my bike in to a bike shop last week for some pedals and I needed new front break pads. I didn't notice when I picked up my bike, but they took my break pads off the back, and replaced them with new ones?! This was not mentioned to me, and I do believe I was charged for them reflecting on the un-itemized receipt. Issue: I didn't ask them to do that, they didn't tell me they were doing that, and the break pads on the back were brand new, and the kind with removeable pads, so you can just replace that rather than the entire component. Boggles the mind and it will be brought up when I go into the shop again very very very soon (as mentioned, rear derailleur has been malfunctioning since I picked my bike back up).

I suppose I should work now.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Holy headlines!

Yesterday was a restless day. It ended up being a bit of a stupid day which went by v-e-e-e-e-r-r-r-r-y-y-y-y-y sloooowly. And a hungry day, as I made an effort to stop wandering to the vending machine during work and to cut back on the incredible amount of candy and chocolate I consume. This went well until I *forgot* about this goal and bought delicious delicious DELICIOUS caramel cakes for an impending hopefully camping adventure that did not take place. But that's beside the point.

Brown won't apologize for blowing up beaver dam - I laaaaughed when I read the original article yesterday. Apparently PEI's current Environment Minister used to have a job in his 20s blowing up beaver dams. This makes the opposition angry.

Why? From what I read in today's article, it seems that this was common practice. I realise this is an opportunity for the opposition to make more people dislike MLA Richard Brown, but they are making an issue out of a non-issue, really. Some people who commented on the article and the previous day's point out that the beaver is a symbol of Canada. Yes, yes it is. But he didn't actually blow up the beavers.. and besides, what if he blew up a ferret? Would that be okay as the ferret is not a symbol of Canada?

Naked guy running around in Charlottetown - (not actual headline, but close enough) This made me smile. Streaking just isn't as prevalent as it used to be. Nice to see someone celebrating the warmer weather :) One comment said, "It was very emBARE-ASSING for the gentleman as he ran along the street trying to get the winter stink off himself.." Who doesn't enjoy a good pun, eh?

Cruise ship passengers spend $3 million in PEI in 2008 - our report made headlines! Weee! And we got a radio spot and TV spot. I didn't write the bulk of this report, but I did editting and some additional work on it, and wrote the press release. Jen Mac makes stuff happen.

(not true, but she sometimes certainly tries!)

That being said, cruise ships make me have moral dilemas regarding gluttony and waste... but so fun...

There were also many articles on Chrysler, and its bankruptcy. Quote from linked article: "
The Canadian and Ontario governments will end up with a two per cent stake in a restructured Chrysler, while the U.S. government will hold eight per cent. Canada will get to appoint one independent director to a new nine-person Chrysler board. The U.S. will appoint four independent directors."

I don't want to own Chrysler :(

Also, who will be the independent director? Can *I* apply for the position?! Will the Gov't of Canada receive dividends? Will I get a portion of these dividends in the form of a tax rebate?

If I got bankrupt will the entirety of Canada band together to own a two percent stake in *ME*?! I suppose I'm just not convinced we are doing the right thing; I see this a putting a band-aid on a bear attack wound.

Tax season is OVER. I ended up owing just over $8K in taxes, CPP, and Gst. Not too bad. But sometimes I think about how much we give the government on a daily basis, directly and indirectly.

Indirectly I give them many hugs and love.

hee... ^_^

For simplicity sake, let's say I made $20/hr, doing something lovely like hugging small cuddly animals. Suddenly the fed gov't took $3.00, and PEI took $1.96 in taxes (minimum tax bracket). I pay some CPP and EI (not sure how much? let's pretend $1.50). I now have $13.54 left. I can now buy, using algebra (which I miss, ooh, high school math) (1.05x)(1.10)=13.54, items with a listed, pre-tax total price $11.73.

Umm, that seems a little ridiculous, so I'm thinking I must have did something wrong? Granted, I didn't take any deductions off total income to decrease my net income, thus decreasing my taxes. So really, maybe I actually had about $15 left to play with.

It's such a cycle too. Whatever I bought with my leftover $15, part went to taxes (as pointed out above), and THEN, the organization from which I bought the product/service has to pay tax on its profit. Pretend I gave them $12 pre-tax. Cost of goods sold is $6, and with cost of electricy, rent, blah blah blah, they make a profit of $2.50 per item once boiled down to net income levels. Some of that profit goes to shareholders in the form of dividends, which are taxed (though I can't remember at what level, perhaps only half of income earned this way is taxable?), and some goes to the gov't in the form of corporate taxes.

Tax tax tax. What a taxing thing to write about!

So nice to know my taxes are buying a car company. Hope I get a discount if I ever decide to buy a Chrysler.

Unrelated, but the rear derailleur on my bike has taken on a mind of its own and magically shifts gears when I don't want it to, and often doesn know when I initiate the process of switching gears. I try to switch gears, nothing happens, aim for a crack or blip in the road (so easily done as the roads are full of them) in effort to 'bounce' the derailleur into place. This practice is generally effective, albeit annoying.