Thursday, 27 May 2010

I heart Pacman

Who doesn’t love Pacman?  Apparently no one – no one doesn’t love Pacman.

If you visited Google.com last week, you might have noticed that they were celebrating the 30th anniversary of the historic Pacman video game by changing the Google logo to a mini Pacman game.  And yes, you could actually play it.


When I noticed it, I cheered gleefully from my desk and began playing immediately.  I did only play one round, though.  Honestly.  I swear.  And I was only 2 stupid dots away from winning!  Curses!  I would have played again if I had time.  In fact, I intended to return to have another go, but I forgot.  Short attention span.

Other people, though, played the iconic and addictive game a lot more than I did.  Actually, web surfers spent millions of man-hours playing it.  No friggin doubt.  Pacman is awesome.  Of course they did. 

On average, Google users do 22 searches per day, with each taking about 11 seconds.  On that day, an average of 36 more seconds was spent per search.  With 504 million Googlers every day, that’s a total of 4.8 million more man-hours spent on the page – the equivalent of 550 years.

Laugh out loud.

They’ve hit the big time now.  How much you wanna bet they do it again? – and soon.  All of a sudden it’s obvious that this Internet search engine giant can put interactive ads in their title spot and get the entire world’s undivided attention.  Shake your money-maker, Google.

Personally, I hope there’s a Nintendo anniversary coming up.  As far as I’m concerned, the perfect way to celebrate such an occasion is with a Duck Hunt interactive Google icon. 

All in favour, say I.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Wow. I’m awesome.

I’ve recently realized that I’m friggin awesome. 

Actually, it’s more of a sarcastic statement.  It really has to do with the fact that I’m becoming more and more ridiculous (ridiculously stupid). 

Last week Hubby emailed me to say that my driver’s license was on the dashboard of his truck.  What?  How in the hell did it get there?  Well, it was there because I had to use it at work last week to get into the building because I forgot my security pass.  At the end of the day, the security guard gave the license back to me.  My husband then picked me up, and I must have had the card in my hand when I got into his truck.  I apparently put it on the dash without even noticing.  So, once I remembered all that, I replied to Hubby's email: “Wow. I’m awesome” I told him. 

And that’s where it began.  The awesomeness, I mean.  Or, more specifically, the realization that lately, I’m particularly awesome. 

Later in the week, I couldn’t find my headphones.  I knew I had them in the car on the way home the day before, but there were nowhere to be found.  My mp3 player was fine, just minus the headphones.  When I got in my car the next morning, they were hanging out of the driver’s side door.  They’d been dangling there all night.  Again, there was only one logical conclusion I could draw.  “I’m awesome”, I said to myself. 

On Friday night I decided I would wash my car.  Filthy little bugger, it was.  I was using hubby’s new pressure washer.  Well, I poured some soap into the bucket and decided that it was too much work to get a separate hose to fill it.  So, I used the super duper machine to fill the bucket.  It was only a matter of seconds before I was covered in soap foam.  Awesome.

I’m not sure if it’s an age thing.  Or if maybe I’m just as awesome as always, but just noticing it more lately. 

Last year, when I accidentally took the bus home (having forgotten that I drove to work), I had the flurry of wedding planning to blame – my mind was so otherwise occupied with planning the greatest day of my life, that it didn’t have time to think about such simplistic and meaningless things as how I got to work (or how I would get home).

But now… what’s my excuse now?  I have none.  There’s no special reason that I should be such an idiot.


So stay tuned.  I’m sure more awesomeness awaits.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Get your act together, Science.

Super cool!  Some rare African water lily (like a lily pad, but penny- sized) recently went extinct.  What’s cool about that?  Well, apparently, it’s no longer done-for.  It was extinct, and now it’s just not.  Some genius Brit revived the precious plant from seeds that German Botanists had preserved.  Großartig!


The little gem used to grow in Rwanda, until its source of water was diverted for farming.  The British sci-guy figured out that (unlike all other known water lilies) this one doesn’t grow submerged in water; it grows in the damp conditions at the edge of thermal hot springs.  That’s some smart lily.  And some smart Brit. 


But were you aware of how quickly the extinct list is growing thanks to us – the upright-walking and opposable-thumbed idiots?


Given that we’re killing off more species than would ever die naturally, I started wondering what else we might be able to revive?


The obvious thought is dinosaurs.  Could we extract DNA from their fossils and create new ones?  Probably.  How much you wanna bet some weird “scientist” is already trying it?


But what about other things?


I, for one, would like to see the Mariana Mallard revived.  True, the spelling isn’t exactly correct, but, like me, the Mariana Mallard was slightly smaller than average Mallards.  (Just to be clear, I’m not smaller than average Mallards – I’m smaller than average humans.) 


Another creature I think should be removed from the list of extinctions: the Pig-footed Bandicoot.  Yep, you heard me.  Pig. Footed. Bandi. Coot.


The Pig-footed Bandicoot was a kitten-sized marsupial.  Curiously, its front feet resembled deer or pig hooves.  The little guy is currently classed as extinct on the red list.  Like most extinctions, the Pig-footed Bandicoot’s demise was probably due to humans invading its habitat – in this case, dirty European settlers.  What a shame.  However, some pig-footers might still be hiding in Australia.  Maybe there’s hope for them yet.


If given the opportunity, we should probably revive all the creatures we’ve endangered and extinct-ed.  C’mon.  We have to restore all these poor beings to their former glory before we’re forced to admit to ourselves that we’re the ones that killed them off for good. 


In fact, we apparently can’t even keep tabs on everything we’re already threatening.  There are new species (exhibits a, b, c) getting discovered all the time!  New species for us to identify, research, and ultimately destroy.


So, I figure, maybe Scientists aren’t as friggin smart as they think they are.


There’s a novel thought.


Get your act together, Science.  Get crackin.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

My definition of sad

There are some things in life that are just a little bit sad. 

My definition of sad: when it’s ironic, or when it’s predictable, or when it’s unfortunate, embarrassing, or just when it’s irritating. 

Recently you’ve heard a few stories that I think are sad.  Like when you end up driving in the same direction, on the same highway, at the same time as your husband – but in two separate cars.  Or when you need a GPS device to get around your own neighbourhood. 

I thought I’d share some other tidbits – snapshots into my life – that are kinda unlucky; discouraging; inopportune. 

For example:  You are building a fence.  A godforsaken, pain-in-the-ass, making-a-mess-of-your garden, and taking-too-damn-long-to-build fence.  You really need it, but that doesn’t mean you resent it any less.  You actually helped build it last weekend.  You mixed concrete, and dug out the bottom of holes, and levelled posts.  And you know what’s really sad?  It’s really sad when you’re sitting at your desk stirring your yogurt, berries, and granola, and it reminds you of mixing concrete in a wheelbarrow.  Pathetic.  …At least it tastes better. 

Another example:  You make extra food for dinner one night so you can take it to work for lunch the next day.  In the morning you take the tupperware out of the fridge, but promptly forget it on the counter when you leave the house.  It is SO sad when you go to all that trouble, and not only are you hungry at work, but your food is wasted. 

Or: You’re watching Justin Bieber on tv, and not only do you barely know who he is, but when he “sings” his “hit song”, you've never heard it before in your life.  Not once.  It’s not even sad enough that girls (and girls’ mothers) are screaming at the top of their lungs for this 16-year-old sensation; that boys are copying his hair “style”; that his backup dancers are twice his age – but that you are on the verge of having no clue who the hell this little twerp is or what he’s doing.  Except that he’s Canadian.  You should at least know that much. 

None of these things mean the end of the world, of course.  If they do, your world must be in pretty good shape to begin with.  I guess, though, it’s just kind of a shame when, in your head, yogurt = concrete; or when your effort/food is wasted; or when you’re not up-to-date on the latest teen sensation.  Ok, that last one might not be as sad as I thought.

Monday, 17 May 2010

In 500 metres, turn left.

It’s coming up on 2 years since my husband and I left our hometown.  Hometown is much smaller than Newcity, but I wouldn’t call it a village.  Newcity is no metropolis, but it is 8 to 9 times bigger than Hometown. 

So, tell me what you think.  After more than a year, we probably shouldn’t be lost all the time, right?  Like, we shouldn’t be relying on Monica (our GPS device) every day? 

In Hometown, we knew every nook and cranny; every shortcut; every ‘bad’ neighbourhood; every “where Studio 801 used to be”. 

Don’t get me wrong.  We are learning our way around Newcity, we’re just taking (what I would consider) a frigging LONG time to do it. 

And not only is Newcity still new, but Hometown is getting less and less familiar.  Every time we go, we end up playing a really pathetic version of Eye-Spy in which we are pointing out things that are different, or asking each other if that random sign or building was there before. 

In our defence, Newcity doesn’t just have a bigger population, it’s more spread out too.  And less than 2 years cannot possibly compare to more than 20… can it?  And to be fair, my husband knows his way around better than I do, but neither one of us is giving out directions. 

So, on Friday night, we wanted to find someplace new for dinner.  We searched the Interwebs for a long time and finally found something promising near our house – a cool little burger joint (kinda like Wild Wing, but for burgers).  Despite the fact that this place is famous across Newcity, and is not even ten minutes from our house, we didn’t. even. know. it. existed.  We had never even driven on the roads that took us there.  Seriously. 

That's why excursions like these are often depressing – why can’t we just know where to go and how to get there?

Well, I discovered an upside.  Dinner was friggin awesome.  And I like to think of it as a splendid new discovery.  It seems that every time I venture out, I discover new land – like Christopher Columbus (except I didn’t steel the burger joint from the original owners nor infect them with disease).  It’s like scratching away the black crayon wax to reveal bits and pieces of the rainbow underneath.  Little by little, I WILL find my way around this place.  I have to. 

And, so, on Sunday, when I drove to my friend’s house for the first time, I didn’t need Monica to guide me.  I had an idea of where I was going, so I printed a Google map, and found my way across the river, into entirely uncharted territory.  All. by. my. self.  Halleluiah.  Maybe there's hope for me yet. 

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Commuter Chronicles - Mall Monkeys

Eff it. I hate commuting. 

I usually “Park and Ride” – which basically means park at the mall and then take the bus to work. 

Pros: I have my car right at the end of the day to do errands, or go to the gym, or whatever; it’s a faster route than the one from my house; this main route comes every 5 minutes, as opposed to every 15 or 30; and, there’s less walking than there would be if I walked to the stop in my neighbourhood. 

Cons: the mall people are friggin assholes. 

They are so damn picky about where you park.  Fine, I’m taking up precious “we’re the busiest mall in Canada and can’t spare a parking spot” lot spaces.  Eff that.  I walk through that empty mall every friggin night buying crap I don’t need.  I did all my Christmas shopping at your stupid mall after work last year, fools.

Well no more.  Say goodbye to my regular paycheque, mall monkeys.

Last week they said, “oh you can’t park in this ‘spill-over’ lot unless that other lot fills first”.  Fine, effers.  I’ll park in your stupid farthest-from-anything lot before I park in your second-farthest-from-anything lot.  You win.

Oh, no, that won’t do.  This morning I find out from the goddam rent-a-cop that the spill-over lot is no longer available.  They’re demolishing it.

Idiots.

So now if the one lot is full, I have to drive 5 minutes further EAST to get on a bus that’s going WEST.

How dumb does he think I am?

On top of it, my husband friggin offered to drive me to work this morning.  And I was all, nah, I’ll drive my car to the mall so I can go right to the gym after work.  So he says, that’s a shame because he’s working so close to my office this week.  So I says, yeah, but it’s a shame to buy a bus pass and not use it, and I can read my book anyway.  So he says, fine, as you wish.

So then I get effing rent-a-cop’s new info and have to drive to work anyway!  So my husband and I are on the stupid highway AT THE SAME EFFING TIME and I have to pay $10 to park at work after sitting in 45 minutes worth of traffic.

And what am I gonna do from now on?  Walk to work?

Eff this.

Commuting sucks ass.

_

Monday, 10 May 2010

Boo!

The other night Hubby walked into our home office and was dreadfully and tragically scared out of his wits. 

He got severely startled and yelled at me to “get rid of that Annadanna Scarecrow!”





In case you can’t tell, that’s my steamer.  And hanging from it is the outfit I almost wore to work on Friday before changing my mind at the last minute. 

Unlike most scarecrows, the Annadanna Scarecrow is not protecting a farm.  It’s not even really meant to “scare”.  It’s just the type of thing that can startle a person pretty easily, mostly due to the fact that it’s just so friggin unexpected. 

You just don’t anticipate someone randomly standing in your office, and then, all of a sudden, staring you right in the face. 

For a scarecrow, the Annadanna Scarecrow is damn effective. 

Apparently people have been using scarecrows forever.  The first scarecrows were Egyptian, made along the Nile River to protect wheat fields from flocks of quail.  The Greeks, too, loved scarecrows, discovering that they could mimic the God Priapus, who played in the vineyards and kept birds away from the grapes.  It also seems that scarecrows in Medieval Britain were live boys, aged 9 years or older.  (An excellent passtime for a young Brit, if you ask me.)

So, my Annadanna Scarecrow is not a new idea. 

It is, however, the most effective scarecrow I’ve ever seen.  It doesn’t just scare crows (though, come to think of it, there were fewer crows in my house all weekend).  It actually scares humans too, making it the best kind of scarecrow – the kind that can scare the crap of whatever approaches. 

Whatever you throw at it, the Annadanna Scarecrow does the job.  It has surely made both Hubby and I shit our pants on more than one occasion, (and then piss our pants laughing). 

I therefore think the Annadanna Scarecrow is the best scarecrow of all time.  I might even enter it into the Clinton, Ontario Scarecrow Festival.  I have no doubt it would win top prize.

_

Friday, 7 May 2010

Way to go Gran

My husband’s Gran and Gramps have gone to Europe for a WWII tour.  Gramps is very highly respected in the military community.  Actually, in the hockey community too.  Really, he’s very highly respected in most communities.

Anyway, as part of their tour, they traveled to the Netherlands for the ceremonies commemorating the 65th anniversary of VE-Day.  And yesterday, we were all super excited upon hearing that Gramps had schmoozed it up (ie shaken hands) with the one-and-only Prime Minister Stephen Harper.  Sweet.

Well, then this morning we actually got an email from Gran that said:

I sat next to the PM of Canada and the PM of the Netherlands at lunch yesterday, that was pretty amazing.  I guess being the wife of the Saviour of Bergen-Op-Zoom has its advantages.

OMG!  How COOL is that?!  Gran just chillin at lunch with the PMs!

So then I got to thinking, if I were in her situation, I would be totally smitten.  It wouldn’t matter that I don’t actually like him that much, or that I don’t actually agree with him on most things.  I’d still be a smitten friggin kitten.  I wouldn’t even begin to know what to say..

“So, um, Mr. Harper, um, seen any good movies lately?"

“I hear health care’s kinda pricey, eh?”

But not Gran.  She’d just be herself – relaxed and laughing and making conversation.  By the end of the lunch they’d be best friends.

"Um, excuse me Steve, are you going to eat that strawberry?"

"Can you autograph my napkin?"

"Does your pâté taste like cat food? Mine does."

"Ah, Stevie honey, you have a little something between your teeth."

By now she's probably knitting socks and sewing pajama pants for his kids. They probably have a lunch date for next week.  On Gran’s deck by the pool.  Oh, Harper’s kids would love her pool!

So, Gran, fill me in when you get home.  I can’t wait to hear all about how you wooed the top leaders of two very awesome nations! Gefeliciteerd!

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Magic Smagic

Hubby and I were watching some random "Magician Shimshi" guy on Ellen tonight.  And do you want to know what we decided? 

We decided, quite simply, that we are avid supporters of outlawing magic.  Or, at least avid supporters of marginalizing magicians and people who like them.

We decided that magic is effing annoying. 

It's annoying for a lot of reasons, including, but not limited to:  1) magicians are dorks; 2) they just won't disappear for real; 3) MAGIC IS FAKE; 3b) you can't figure out how they do it; 3c) you never get to see it first hand; and, 3d) you can't trust a magician as far as you can throw his little white bunny. 

I hate to be a party pooper.  And I am all about having faith (believing in something that common sense tells you not to - thank you Miracle on 34th Street for that life lesson), but I just can't agree with magic. 

It's not even that I don't believe in it, per se.  It's just that I can't support it.  I can't support fakers (and doing "magic" but refusing to reveal your secret makes you a liar in my book - like when you were a kid and your friend would say "I can do a handstand" and you would say "so can I" and then she would say "so do one" and you'd be stuck with "I don't feel like it right now" - yep, FAKER). 

So I think magic should be - at the very least - marginalized.  I think Mr. "Mindfreak" (aka Criss I-don't-know-how-to-spell-my-name Angel) and all the other magicians, illusionists, tricksters, and fakers should take a hike.  (Sidebar:  it sounds like that includes politicians and lip-syncing pop stars, while we're at it.) 

Leave me alone, you idiots.  All you're doing is annoying me and pissing me off - and you're contributing pretty much nothing to society.  Yeah, that's right, I said it.  I resent your lies and I'm sick of it.  I'm going to start a movement.  Down with magic!  I don't care if you ARE a mindfreak - you bug me, and I'm not going to tolerate it ANYmore.  Farewell magic - see you in Hell.

_

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Oh, Lindsay

Apparently Lindsay Lohan has landed the lead role in an upcoming independent film.

Way to go Lindsay!

Oh wait - hold the phone - the movie will apparently portray the turbulent and tumultuous life of 1970s PORN STAR Linda Lovelace. 

Perhaps NOT the way to go, Lindsay. 

For those of you poor saps who don’t already know, Linda Lovelace got her ‘big break’ with the classic 1972 film "Deep Throat".  I think she won an Oscar.  Maybe more than one.  Oh, sorry, typo – I meant to say did, not won. 

Miss Lohan will be portraying Linda in the upcoming motion picture “Inferno”.  Bill Pullman will portray Playboy magazine founder Hugh Hefner in this ‘period drama’. 

Oh, Lindsay, what are you doing?

At 24 years old I was making much better decisions. I wasn’t partying all the time while being photographed by scads of paparazzi.  I wasn’t in rehab every other week.  I wasn’t in a public feud with my parents.  I wasn’t inviting my little sister to bars with me.  And I certainly wasn’t perpetuating my own self-imposed stereotype as a slut by portraying one in a movie.  Lindsay used to be a cute little Disney girl, didn’t she?  What a shame.

On the other hand, remember the least popular Saved by the Bell character?  Not Screech, but Jessie.  Remember when she reintroduced herself to the world by playing a stripper in a special little film called “Showgirls”?  Well, it worked out for her, right?  Didn't she end up getting lots of respect and becoming a critically acclaimed actress?   

So, Lindsay, maybe there’s hope for you yet.

Monday, 3 May 2010

All in all, a good night

My husband and I went out with our friends on Saturday night.

First, we had some gross but expensive sushi for dinner and then made our way to our main destination: a great little blues bar. 

Friggin sweet show.  It was at least 3 hours long.  At one point, the lead singer even took over the drums – without stopping the rockin beat.  Cool. 


The night was almost a total success. 


But about half way through the show Hubby notices that he can't get his wedding ring off. 

(Not that he normally tries to take it off - except when he’s spinning it on the table – idiot.  And he doesn’t take it off to pick up girls either.  Especially when I’m with him.) 

He just happens to notice that his fingers are fatter than normal.  They’re already remarkably stumpy, but this is worse.  We think: oh he’s just carrying water from all the beers last night (or the additional beers tonight). 


But then it occurs to us: effing sushi. 


Ohmygod, he’s having an allergic reaction to the sushi! 


Come to think of it, he sometimes breaks out in hives from a Caesar.  We thought maybe from the Vodka, or from the limes.  But, DUH, it must be from the CLAMato juice! 

So then he says his feet feel fat too.  And then he starts to wiggle his face around.  “My lips feel weird” he says.  Holy shit. 


So, he and I leave the show and do a huge loop checking every quickie-mart in sight.  Me in my very high heals and him lagging behind, with no interest in picking up the goddam pace.  Every little corner store has a million mini bottles of 15-dollar Pepto and 8-dollar Visine.  But no Benydryl. 


So far, though, he can still breathe, and he seems to be ok.  Phew.  No ambulance necessary.  So he takes an anti-inflammatory and we make our back to the bar.  His feet and hands don’t seem to get better, but they don’t get worse. 


Eventually we go back to the parking garage.  It takes 20 minutes to get out of the damn place due to the ridiculously challenging ‘pay on exit’ process. 

But we finally get home and he’s fine. 

All in all, a good night.


So… lessons learned: don’t each shellfish. 


Next steps: get a freaking epi-pen.

_