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Showing posts from February, 2017

Merry Monday - Ghosts and Deadlines

On Saturday, I awoke around 7:00 AM without an alarm. I went on Facebook and for some reason, my aunt showed up in my suggested friends list. This was strange to me as last year I had tried to find her and some of my other relatives online without any success. Three hours later, my brother texted me to let me know my aunt had passed away. It would simply be a strange occurrence, if this type of thing hadn't happened to me on two other occasions. On those other occasions, before finding out that friend's fathers had died, I saw someone that looked exactly like them in a public place. Before I could say hi, the strangers disappeared.

Yeah, I know what that sounds like.

One of my aunts is a registered clairvoyant. She's helped police solve cases.

I know what that sounds like too.

I also know scientists say there's no way ghosts can exist.

My grandma died in our house when I was 6. One day shortly after, I don't know exactly how many days after, both my brother and I heard …

Fortifying Friday - With Bated Breath

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I'm in a strange period where there are lots of things that *could* happen, but I'm waiting to see what does happen.

On School

4/5 transcripts have been received by the college. The transcript that is outstanding is my high school one. Perhaps hard to find as I've been out of high school for a *few* years. I know the college has received my application as not only have I received a student number, but the program head contacted me to request my written piece, which I had already submitted earlier the same day. Yes, it requires a written piece saying why you're interested and suited for the program. Hopefully, I've convinced them to let me in. Hopefully, my high school stops sucking and finds my transcript... My guess is that mine hasn't been digitized and they have to search for it. I have a campus tour booked for next week and will…

Thoughtful Thursday - A Decline in Customer "Service"

Has anyone else noticed that organizations and governments today really don't provide customer service? This is something I keep running into. It's like they don't actually read your support request.

Case 1: "Service" Canada

I put in a suggestion to enhance their website. They switched to a model a couple of years ago where every service is accessed from a central place. This is nice *in theory*. I'm currently collecting EI and the first thing I see on login is menus for people collecting retirement pensions. I'm not eligible for my pension for about 30 more years, so I thought it would be great if they could put what I'm currently there for in the forefront for me rather than having to search for it. I put in a ticket for the suggestion and the response was to send my request to EI. My request had nothing to do with EI or a specific program, so I tried again with a new request that didn't specify a program and said website enhancement. Then the res…

Merry Monday - Family Day

I almost wrote the title of this blog post as "Merry Christmas". My brain may be a little tired today after a long weekend filled with training and libations...

Friday began with finishing my packing. I had a chat with a nice older lady who lives in my building, then picked up a friend. We grabbed some food items and a gift for our beautiful Montreal hostess before heading out of town. The drive was an easy one and I thoroughly enjoyed the conversation. We reached our destination and it wasn't long before we were having a delicious meal with Black Forest Cupcake wine, St. Germain liqueur, and homemade Limoncello.

I had a little trouble sleeping on Friday. It's hard for me to sleep around other people and especially in strange beds.

Saturday brought an early rise, a quick shower, and a tasty breakfast before heading over to Concordia's Loyola campus to train. We had a brief break in the morning and lunch. Other than those, training was near constant with only short s…

Fortifying Friday -The Future

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I've had to spend a lot of time in the last six months thinking about where I am and where I want to be. What I've realized is that I have hated nearly every job I've had. Traditional office work fills me with dread. There is nothing quite so devoid of purpose to me as making documents no one reads. I can create an excellent project plan and management will ignore it then wonder what happened to their project budget. Every IT job I've had has included some jackass who won't listen to what I have to say simply because I have boobs and look young for my age. I don't have a problem having to prove myself. I have a problem having to prove myself for a line of work I have zero passion for anymore. One cannot hate work as much as I have and not be filled with stress, anxiety, dread, and depression without it taking a toll on one's h…

Thoughtful Thursday - Assumptions

I disagree with the saying that when you assume something you make an ass out of u and me. You just make an ass out of yourself.  Assumptions show others how small your worldview is.

Assumptions are a tool of the lazy. When you invent an entire image of a person, city, country, generation instead of researching beyond your own experience, you're lazy. When you assume you know someone based on 2 conversations on social media, you're just plain wrong. And it's ridiculous to think otherwise. There are 525,600 minutes in a year and if you think you can know what one person does with each of those from a brief interaction, you are living in a bubble.

Hell, you can't even be sure you know people you hang out with in person regularly. Everyone that "knew" Ted Bundy thought he was a wonderful human being. They had no clue he spent his time burglarising homes; kidnapping, raping, and killing women; or fornicating with their dead bodies.

Newsflash! People don't experi…

Merry Monday - Writing Accents

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I see a lot of articles written on the subject of writing. I used to gobble up every tip I read and studied them almost religiously. After reading a variety of books in all genres and writing my own book, I analyze tips more critically now. Tips like don't write accents bother me.

These tips are never from the bestselling authors. Bestselling authors tend to give advice like keep trying, guard your writing time fiercely, read books of every genre and even non-fiction, find your voice, and whatever you do: be consistent.

Stephen King advises to minimize distraction by having no windows. Just sit your butt in the chair and get to it. No playing instruments and all the other fun stuff until you're done working for the day.

King isn't a fan of adverbs, but JK Rowling is. Whenever there is a difference like this, I look to Hemingway (though I haven…

Fortifying Friday - Plans and Actions

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Lately, I've been making some changes in my life. Once upon a time, I worked as a project manager and project planner. After several years of upper management having ignored the plans despite their accuracy, my love of planning had become filled with disdain and I began winging things in my personal life. It wasn't working.

I have a todo list in Kanbanflow. It's so large and full of things that I'm not near to accomplishing (I swear I have at least a decade worth of story ideas), that it has become almost useless in terms of goal achievement. I will reorganize it at some point to make it useful again, but I recently started using an analog planner. I plan one week, sometimes only half the week, at a time. I don't always accomplish the things I want to in a week, but I'm getting more done than I was while I was winging it.

One of my …

Thoughtful Thursday - Radicalization

The enemy wants you in a reactive state. They want you to spend so much time putting out fires that you can't focus. They want you arguing within your group. The more divided you are, the more power they have.

This is an old battle tactic.

Musashi himself used it to anger his opponent. An angry opponent lashes out at the wrong things. The wrong people. Anger causes one to make mistakes. In battle, Musashi never let an opponent see his emotions. He won his first duel at the age of 13 because he was underestimated. His most famous duel, he rudely didn't show up until 4 hours late. In truth, he was nearby watching as his opponent grew increasingly angry. He brought his enemy to the edge of snapping then swiftly eliminated him.

Below is just a snippet from a larger documentary. The full thing is fascinating if you have time to watch it.

Musashi wasn't a wealthy samurai. He didn't spend a lot of time exchanging pleasantries. Many accounts make him seem like an asshole. After de…

Superb Owl Sunday: An Alternative to Super Bowl

Maybe Super Bowl isn't your thing, but you're craving that oneness that others achieve on this day by gathering to watch the last American football game of the year in pubs and "man" caves all around the world. I'm here to talk about an alternative.

Superb Owl Sunday is an opportunity to do the same things only centered around the noble and majestic owl. You might be thinking that owls can be rather creepy with their too large eyes. And how about what they look like without feathers? But there is much more to these birds that can be learned about and celebrated on Superb Owl Sunday. With over 200 species of owls in the world, there is a lot to learn!

A Suggested Itinerary

Eat owl-shaped pancakes for breakfast
Bake and decorate owl-shaped cookies for the evening festivities
Owl crafts could include paper mache, clay, construction paper, knitting/crocheting, macaroni, wood, costumes, painting, and more!
Make owl-related snacks. These could look like mice if you want to p…

Fortifying Friday - Rejection

Yesterday, I received my first rejection from an agent. It stung. It wasn't that it was bad. It was worded in a way that it may have even been personally written. Regardless, rejection never feels good unless you were secretly hoping to stay home and do nothing when a friend made plans with you. Then it feels great! I might be an introvert ;)

Anyway, it hurts a bit extra when you have other things going on. Between the worries of the state of the world and being unemployed, it felt much like being kicked while I was already down.

The agent said she couldn't connect with my book though she really wanted to. She also said not to take her rejection as any kind of sign that I should give up. It was nice as far as rejections go.

So, I lay there for a bit. Then I let my friends know via social media. Several said that I had hit a milestone and I should try to collect as many as possible this year. Rejections, they said, were a badge of honour awarded for putting myself out there. Seems…

Thoughtful Thursday - Helping Out

I'm revising my stance again on nonviolence. Earlier this week, I wrote a poem for a contest. I was struck with the idea to write about the history of the world in the form of news headlines. Being a person who predominately lives in the present with an eye on the future, I had to research a lot in a very short time. Violence seems to unfortunately be the only way jerks get the message to F off. 

I learned nonviolence was first proposed by the church to control those of different faiths. Then by the British as they warred with everyone multiple times. 

I learned that protests and marches likely won't be enough. We'll have to do more and be more. For some, that will mean bleeding. For others, that will mean supporting troops. And some will stay to keep their countries running.

I hate that this is the future I see right now because it is so far from the future I want. 

What does that look like?

Harmony. People uniting regardless of faith, gender, class, etc. Perhaps even the elim…