Wednesday, February 28, 2007


Back at the grind. School, school, school. Sunday was very exciting, as I spent basically the whole day studying. I had my theory midterm and a quiz in English on Monday morning, and because of my amazing procrastination skills I had to do all the studying on Sunday. For theory, I had to analyze a movement of a Mozart Sonata and then write an essay on it in the midterm. I hate analyzing. It takes me forever. Actually, I just sort of hate theory. Bah to theory.

I finally have all my passport stuff figured out, and after my class I'm going to mail it off to The Man. It's way easier to mail it because the lines at the passport office in Vancouver are so long, people are hiring homeless people to stand in line for them. Seriously. I read an article about in the paper. And since I'm not in any real hurry to get my passport, it just as easy to mail it in. I'm not actually planning on going anywhere, it's just sort of a good thing to have. Just in cases.

I have a research paper due in Poli Sci next week, and so I really have to start doing some readings for that. My skills of procrastination are second to none, and for some reason I have a really hard time working on something until the night before it's due. And while this works for normal assignments, for ones that require research it's not so great. So on that note, I believe I will read some journal articles while my English teacher is standing up at the front babbling about Fifth Business.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Read? Pshaw.

So Reading Week is drawing to a close. It was very exciting. I swear. Monday was my recital - it went well, and relatively uneventful except for dropping my bow in the middle of the 2nd movement of my Shosti. Good times. My mom came out, as did my Uncle Jerry and cousin Bruce. It was nice to see everyone, since I've been living out here since September but actually haven't seen any of my BC-residing relatives.

I meant to do stuff during Reading Week, but ended up not doing as much as I meant to. I was hampered by the fact that while out for my run on Tuesday morning, my keys fell out of my pocket. Luckily by the time I made it back to my rez they had already been picked up and turned in, but unluckily they sent them back through campus mail which takes FOREVER! So I only got them back yesterday. My UPass was on my keychain/lanyard thingie, so it meant I was campus-bound all week. I paid bus fare downtown to go see Music and Lyrics with Jenna on Tuesday, but other than that I stayed close to home. I did a bit of reading for my research paper, and worked a bit on analyzing a Mozart Sonata for my theory midterm on Monday. Exciting.

This weekend is the YND executive retreat, where we're making our evil master plan for the year. This being, I should probably start paying attention to the meeting now - being co-chair and all:)

Friday, February 16, 2007

The Home Stretch

So I'm almost done with this week. It's the home stretch. It doesn't necessarily mean I'll be less busy, but I won't have classes to go to next week. Hooray for Reading Week! The opera finished on Sunday, but we started in this week on rehearsals for our next concert - the 10th Anniversary of the Chan Centre. It's an all Beethoven program, which should be interesting......

Tuesday was not my day. I woke up in the morning, went for a run, ate breakfast, and then went back to bed because I felt so crappy. I meant to practice during that time, but I figured it was probably more useful to me to be feeling OK. Then in the afternoon I dropped my viola during my lesson. Good times. Luckily, even when I have bad luck, I'm still lucky because things always turn out OK. Some people have the worst luck, and when bad things happen it's the worst possible outcome. But my viola's fine. My chin-rest bore the brunt of the fall, and I had to replace it. It was sort of sad, since that chin-rest had been with me for over 10 years, switched from viola to viola. Rest in peace, dear friend.

Another thing I did this week was spend hours riding the bus, and I have come to the conclusion that I hate Translink with the flaming passion of a thousand burning suns. Seriously. It takes forever to get anywhere because of the sketchy system of buses. I spent 3 hours riding the bus on Wednesday just to go pick up my bow from getting a re-hair. It wasted my whole afternoon! Bah!

Yesterday I got a call from the Cecilia Quartet who were in town on their Jeunesses Musicales tour. So I met up with them last night for some grub on Robson, and made plans to meet up with them again this afternoon after I go to see Maher Arar talk about the Arar Inquiry. I'm not quite sure what to expect from this lecture, but it was free and I thought it would be interesting no matter what he was planning on talking about. Tomorrow my mom arrives for my recital, and on Monday the agony will be over and I can stop practicing, and work on all my school work I have been neglecting a bit. Anybody want to write a paper for me?

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Can't Talk.....Studying

Here is a letter I sent to the Ubyssey, UBC's student newspaper, that I thought people (cough, mom, cough) would be interested to read:

I have two midterms on Thursday, and almost broke my viola. Also, am going to see Maher Arar give a talk on Friday. More to come laters.

Saturday, February 10, 2007


So I'm sitting in BC NDP Provincial Council right now, surfing the internets, and came across these two news stories. The first is amusing, the second is disturbing.

Apparently teenagers still don't understand the concept that once you post something on the internet, anyone can see it. Students at King Philip Regional High School in Wrentham Mass. created a Facebook group dedicated to a pro-gay rights teacher at their school. And then proceeded to use it as a forum to bash Republican Senator Scott Brown. Excerpts include, "I hate scott brown" and "scott brown ascends from the underworld". Apparently these were the tame ones. So what does Senator Brown do? He goes to the high school to speak at an assembly and proceeds to read off the more offensive and profane comments, and specifying which students posted them. Seriously. Doesn't he have work to do? And does anybody else find it creepy that there's a rogue Republican Senator trolling Facebook? Didn't they learn their lesson about harassing youth? Anyways, I found it somewhat amusing, because when I created a group to say bad things about people on Facebook, I clicked the box to make it private so that nobody but people I approve could read it. Kids these days are very foolish.

The other story is somewhat more disturbing - an article in the Toronto Star today about poverty in Canada. It has to do with health care, but an area that is often disregarded - dentistry. It's the story of Jason Jones, one of Ontario's many working poor who is not covered for any dental services under OHIP. If he were on social assistance he would get partial coverage, but because he works full-time but doesn't make more than 8 bucks and hour (the minimum wage) and does not have health benefits from work, he has no dental coverage whatsoever. There's not much I can say about this. I know how expensive these types of 'frivolous' services are - I desperately need new glasses but have been putting off going to the optometrist because I can't afford it. And I'm just lucky that I've been blessed with a mixture of good teeth, and my dad's dental coverage. But even with coverage, it's damn expensive to see the dentist for a simple check-up and cleaning, let alone some sort of more complicated procedure. Our country is moving in a dangerous direction in terms of health care and interpretations of the Canada Health Act, and it's quite frankly very disturbing.

Here are the urls to the two stories:

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


I read Bourque newswatch to get tomorrow's Canadian news today, and today they linked to an article from the Toronto Star, dated January 30, that made me so mad. This crazy-ass columnist was confused as to why people are caring so much about climate change 'instead' of health care. First of all, people care about both. The point though, is that we won't need health care if our ecosystem collapses. Also, by improving the quality of the air we breathe etc, we would become less of a strain on our healthcare system. Here are some gems from the article that particularly pissed me off:

"Another reason to wonder about our sudden environmental awareness is that, although little attention has been paid to this, global warming will actually benefit Canadians, on balance.

A warmer climate will lengthen our growing season and so expand our agricultural output. It will melt our Arctic ice, creating opportunities for speedier sea travel to Europe and Asia, and make it possible to increase exploitation of our northern resources. It will also reduce our death rate, which always increases during our winters.

Our unearned luck is not yet complete. One of the most feared of the consequences of global warming – a rise in sea levels – will have little effect on us. As a rich country, we are far better situated to cope with climate change's negative effects than is a poor one, like Bangladesh."

Holy shit. Sure, we may not suffer as much as Bangladesh or the Netherlands (whose majority of land is under sea level). But the ice caps melting and sea level rising has bigger and much scarier consequences than just opening the Northwest passage and flooding some countries that we apparently shouldn't care about. The Day After Tomorrow may have been a cheezy movie, but it was based on climate change science. They can't really predict what WILL happen, but that was one example of what COULD happen. And then, Canada would really be screwed.

There is this sort of attitude in Canada that we would be better off if the world heated up a bit, because it's so cold here anyways - so what would a few degrees matter! Uh, well, let's say drought. Massive drought in the prairies. Great Depression-like dustbowl. The Lower Mainland of BC would probably be underwater - including the Greater Vancouver area, which is the third largest city in Canada. And after the drought and flooding, maybe the climate would cool because of a shift in ocean currents. Could happen. And then we'd really be screwed. If we thought it was cold now, we should wait and see what happens if we keep destroying or planet. Next Ice Age, here we come!

Friday, February 02, 2007


Ok I know, I should update more often. I swear I was busy this week though - yesterday I basically no time to eat between 10 and 7:30. It was rough, man. Anyhoo, YND convention was fun. We had interesting workshops and stuff, and I was acclaimed as the new Co-Chair. The only 'hi-jinks' I suppose would be from Saturday night. We went to a house party, and Alex, Jenna, and I decided to walk there because we're cheap but apparently not lazy. Then when we got there Alex took off to the liquor store and bought Jenna and I this awesome 2-litre plastic pop bottle of orange wine cooler. And we drank it out of the bottle, ghetto style. A small dance party sub-set of the house party got started in the living room, although periodically Jenna and I would go hang out in the bathroom. Not for any reason in particular. Just because it seemed like the thing to do. However, people were very interested in what the hell we were doing in there, so the official story is that we were doing lines of coke off the toilet seat;)

At about 1 am we left the party, but only made it about two blocks before stopping at a 24-hour diner. It was a good idea, since I had skipped supper and was starving. Alex ordered a milkshake, and then got a little crazy trying to get the guy sitting across from us to look at her - mostly by making suggestive motions with the whipped cream on her milkshake. It was hilarious and disturbing at the same time! At the end of convention, I got saddled with a box 'o propaganda, but luckily I got a ride home from the ferry because I have no idea how I would have carried that sucker a) onto the bus, and b) from the bus loop to my place. I did use my new-found power to make other people carry it onto the ferry, but none of them were heading my way.

This week I've been pretty busy, just with school stuff. The opera starts on Thursday, so we've been having these crazy intensive 3 1/2 hour rehearsals. And on a non-schoolwork related note, they've also been filming on campus again. Last night they were filming outside the Chan when I got out of opera, and so I asked someone what they were filming. It's this movie called "Passengers", starring Anne Hathaway. It's about a guy who's in a plane crash, and Anne Hathaway's character is the grief counselor who's helping him come to terms with it, etc. They apparently have the plane crash site set up on the Spanish Banks, and I've been running past all their trucks along Marine Drive all week. It'll be amusing to go see it when it comes out, because they've been filming at quite a few locations on campus this week - they even have their craft services tent set up in the parking lot beside the School of Music!