Thursday, November 29, 2007
I was utterly dumbfounded. It's not like I go to any great lengths to hide my identity or anything, but at the same time I haven't posted my full name, place of residence, work... I may have mentioned Carleton... hmm. Anyway, this girl from MILK claimed to have recognized me by my photo, which is incredible. Good vision, girl from MILK! You should abandon retail and become a... person-finder!
In other news, I had a very long but reassuring day. PhD application time is wrought with highs and lows; moments of confidence and integrity and moments of misery and despair. If you have more highs than lows, the apps get done and sent off. If you have more lows, well... they don't. I sure hope I have more days like today.
The weekend is already upon us! This week flew by very fast, due to business and stress (busy-ness, not business). Tomorrow I have to return some library books. That's it. I'm going to work on my apps tomorrow but I'm largely going to take it easy. Then tomorrow night is a little cocktail party I'm sure I'll enjoy!
Saturday is the Let it Snow party at Babylon! I feel like I've been looking forward to it since the last one!
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Instead of watching a movie last night, I decided to vent some aggression by playing Halo2. It's been a while since I played it... I guess I forgot how scary it is to play by yourself late at night. It's just the flood... they get so CLOSE! Anyway, I played until I had effectively scared the shit out of myself. Productive day.
Holiday fun times are starting to clog up my December calendar! My supervisor is having a party this Friday, Top of the World is having a party Saturday, and Tom and I are having dinner with my sis and bro-in-law for his birthday Sunday! Sounds like a damn good weekend!
1) finish corrections, input grades
2) maybe some undeadclothingco if I have time before work?
3) work; 4-9
Frig, it looks cold out there. Tonight is probably going to be a snoozer at the store.
Tomorrow I have 2 meetings with potential references for my applications; one at 10 am and the other at 5pm. Nice scheduling, huh? I'll probably hang out with my mom in between, seeing as she's so close to Carleton and she called me yesterday but I was too busy to hang.
I'm actually pretty nervous about the 10am meeting. It's a prof I had for a communcations seminar last year. I think he'd made a good reference because he's a comm prof and 3 of the 4 programs I'm applying to are in communcations. Thing is, we didn't really *click*. It's not that we didn't get along at all, but I feel like there's an equal chance he'll give me a good reference or he won't. I'm trying to imagine myself in his office tomorrow and him saying "Sorry," and wondering how to gracefully accept that. I got a decent mark in his class... I'm probably overreacting.
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
When I work the cash at the store, I ask customers if this purchase is a gift or not. If they say 'no', I like to tease them for shopping for themselves at this time of year. Now I'm that guy! I bought some clothes at Neon for half off, a winter coat that I desperately need, and a very special sweater. I'm eager to premiere it at knitting circle this week.
Basically, all I accomplished yesterday was to spend about $500 on MYSELF (which, you'll notice was NOT on my list!)!!
So today, I have to do all those things I didn't do yesterday. It won't be fun, but it'll feel good to have done them. Then I'll treat myself to popcorn and a movie when Tom goes to hockey! Good deal!
Monday, November 26, 2007
Basically we pick numbers, and open gifts in that order. If you don't like your gift, you are able to trade it with someone who went before you. It's tricky to explain, but you probably get the gist of it.
I've handmade gifts a couple of times and they've always been a big hit. One time I made large alligator mittens and people were literally fighting over them. It made me feel pretty good.
1) pick up TA assignments
2) get student ISIC card
3) buy bus pass for next semester
4) buy black ink cartridge
5) do all this in time to meet Jen at 3:15
6) shop, eat, see movie, enjoy afternoon
7) start correcting assignments
8) seek and contact third reference
9) work on emails for profs
... at this point, I think we're actually in Wednesday! Frig, I have a lot of shit to do. I probably can't afford to spend an afternoon shopping with Jen, but I also can't afford NOT to unwind. Plus, I do need to do some more holiday shopping. So there.
10) write personal statements for applications and have them proof-read
11) secure transcripts for applications
12) go crazy and shoot self in the face.
Note that neither thesis, nor undeadclothingco makes the list. Bummer.
Sunday, November 25, 2007
Last night Tom and I went to a great hockey game; the sens vs the flyers. We lost 3-4, but it was a good game. The highlight of the game was when a young woman (late teens, maybe) caught a puck in the jaw. It was BRUTAL. I've been terrified of taking a puck in the face ever since Tom started taking me to games... our seats are in the second row, so we can easily see how hard and fast these fuckers fly. Tom would tell me that since we're so close to the ice, there's no way I could take a fast one in the head; at worst, a high-flying puck could bonk me on the crown.
Well, that's not what happened to this chick. Immediately after getting hit, Tom waved over the attendant who took her away. She came back in the next period with a giant ice bag on her chin. The welt was already turning blue, and I bet it looks terrible today. What pissed me off was that the elderly couple sitting a few seats to her right tried to keep the puck! When the whole thing happened, Tom and I clearly saw the woman pick it up, inspect it for a sec, and put it in her purse. Then, when the injured girl was getting treated a manager-guy came and asked if anyone had seen where the puck went; he'd like to give it to her. Nobody gives it up. When the girl came back to her seat with the icebag, Tom and I glared at the woman till she gave it to her. Geez! Decency police!
I have a big task list for this upcoming weel, most of which has to do with my applications. I'm going to buy a student ISIC card for deals on VIArail service. I figure a last-minute trip to Toronto is not so bad if I'm able to knit/read in transit. I can't do that stuff on the bus. Getting the ISIC card is kinda stupid though; I have to supply my own picture of myself, which they cut up and use for the ID portion of the card. Isn't that rediculous? First of all, I haven't seen an actual material photo of myself in years, they're all digital now! According to facebook, I have over 200 photos of myself available to me. Now I have to pay to have one printed for this damn card. Stupido.
I have a vague shopping/movie date with Jen planned for this week too, which is good because I'm not done my xmas shopping yet. I haven't got much more to do, but I'd like to buy handmade, so we're going to go to the North Dalhousie boutiques! I love them.
One day they'll meet undeadclothingco. I hope they get along!
Thursday, November 22, 2007
It's not a big deal if I can't get to Toronto. I contacted a prof at Carleton through email alone, and I can do that with York too. It's not the end of the world.
Furthermore, it's not the end of my career if I don't get in at York. I might get in at Carleton and decide I want to stay in town! So I'm chilling out.
There's a personal statement writing seminar today on campus at 10. Then knitting tonight... I'm almost done zoomZOOM! I might have a hard time parting with it, to be honest.
Tom bought a shovel yesterday. Winter, it's offish.
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
So I have to ask someone else. There's a department conference Friday, where I can ostensibly shmooze and feel some of my former profs out. I hate mandatory shmoozing. I'm a good shmoozer when I'm in the mood, but now I have this PhD gun to my head. Eff.
Furthermore, I discovered that York also wants my undergrad transcripts, which I thought I had escaped entirely. Truth is, I was a rather mediocre student in my first two years. It wasn't until midway through the 3rd that I got caught up in sociology and decided to run with it. Presumeably, they're not going to care much about my marks for my first two years, but they sure did hurt my average and I'm sure I only got into my Masters program thanks to my references and contacting Carleton profs.
Which brings me to the third pain in my ass. My colleague told me point-blank that I have no chance of getting in to that program without meeting with some profs and convincing them to work with me. He said he had an A+ average after his undergrad, but he still got rejected from graduate schools he didn't visit. Well, fuck.
I mean, I should have known this. I freely admit that contacting a prof helped me get into Carleton. But York is in Toronto! It's not like a half hour drive. Furthermore, it's practically the holidays and the application is due mid-Jan. Like people aren't busy enough without jackass last-minute students coming to kiss their asses? Eep.
Anyway, none of this is terrible, tragic news. I have time to round up another reference. I'll check out the York faculty list and email some profs for some meetings. Maybe I'll go in early Jan when the holiday shitstorm dies down.
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
At first, I was grumbling about how I had to go all the way to campus to pick up my assignments to correct in this frosty, freezy-rainy, shit weather but it turned out to be a rather lovely day. I got my assignments, did some groceries, did some laundry and washed my hair; and it's only 2:41pm!
A certain sociology prof at Carleton really made my day today. I emailed him with the typical pleasant preamble; "Hi, how are you?" and then I asked for a brief meeting... I only slightly touched on the fact that I was poking around for a reference. Then he fully called me on it: he said he'd be happy to write me a "very strong" reference letter and I don't need to see him in person. Well... Sweet! It made me happy that he was so amenable. It's nice when profs you worship give you a little pat on the head. I had a little blushy smile about it all day.
Now; correct assignments.
Any day/afternoon time after that; thesis.
After dinner/nighttime; undeadclothingco. A certain someone's zoomZOOM wallet is almost finished. Yes, that's its official name: "zoomZOOM!!!" It's funner to say than to type.
Monday, November 19, 2007
I'm not allowed to be tired for the rest of the week! Lots to do! Assignment corrections, thesis, PhD application, in that order. First thing tomorrow I go to school and correct! Then I need to start trolling for references... I would assume my supervisor would recommend me but number 2 will be a shot in the dark; I have some ideas though. Then I have to get the theoretical portion of my thesis banged out and being reviewed by the end of the week (ideally).
I had a mini business meeting with my sis and her boyfriend, who are officially undeadclothingco's only staff. And they're volunteers! I'm eager to see another version of the logo and improvements to the website. I'd like to have some of my never wallets up on etsy in January. January 2008! Undeadclothingco's officialy buniess unveiling! Party time. Seriously, I'd like to have a party about it.
Apart from that, hm. Knitting circle thursday, I presume. Maybe some 90s dancing thursday night... it's been a while. Hm. Yeah. Boringest post ever.
Saturday, November 17, 2007
I think it would be wise to throw an app to these 3 schools;
1) Carleton. I've lived in Ottawa all my life, so there is a certain appeal in staying in a city I know and am comfortable in. Furthermore, I had a pretty good experience with my MA; good teachers, good courses, good campus, no complaints.
2) Ryerson/York. I wouldn't have wanted to move to Toronto, but when I saw this COOL program, I realized I have to at least apply to it. It's a PhD in Communication and Culture (not 'sociology') and it's offered through both Ryerson and York universities. The rationale is that you have access to the best of both universities; York's rigorous theoretical background, and Ryerson's hands-on, empirical emphasis. Cool eh? Toronto is far from home, but I do have friends there and this program is too neat not to apply for.
3) McGill? I dunno, it doesn't grab me very hard, but I feel like I should give Montreal a chance to be fair. It's not as far as Toronto, and my sis lives there. Iunno. Couldn't hurt to try. It is choice #3 though.
So yeah! Applications are due as early as mid-January 2008, so I gotta get on that. I'm going to start trolling for recommendations this week, and there's a seminar on how to write good personal statements this Thurs.
That's all the inspiration I needed!
Friday, November 16, 2007
Bizarre factoid; I left a small stack of my business cards on the flyer wall at Top of the World last Sunday... and as of Wednesday they're ALL gone! There isn't much info on those cards... weird. I'll have to monitor my website counter to see if I'm getting more hits...
I had a great time at J's craft night yesterday. I'm stoked that she lives so close! I could literally walk over for a visit if I wanted to (it'd take like, 45 mins, but still!) I am also eager to do business with her boyfriend, A. I like that while he has given me an idea of what he'd like, he's leaving me a lot of agency as creative technician. That's exactly the sort of business interaction I'm hoping to have with undeadclothingco. Custom... with an undead twist. I'm gonna work on his this weekend.
This past week literally flew by. FLEW! I couldn't believe it was Friday today... now it's almost the end of November and I'm nowhere near where I forecasted I'd be on my thesis. Gotta pick up the slack!
In other news, my nephew Finn turns 2 this weekend! I'm bringing the cupcakes! Hope he likes the alligater mittens I made him!
Thursday, November 15, 2007
- Breakfast. Pancakes. First order of business.
- Put nice pretty photos up on undeadclothing.ca... in fact, today might be the day I shell out some bucks to get rid of those dang pop-ups and ads...
- Make wallets now that I have my labels? I'm only 50% stoked on them... thing is, I wanted them to have a black background. Jennifer printed the black onto white ribbon, so the black is kinda... dingy? Faded. When I sew it against pure black fabric, it looks pretty ghetto. I've mentioned the matter to Jennifer who was a very nice and courteous vendor, but if she can't print onto black ribbon I don't think I'll use her services again.
- ummmm, thesis of course. :P
- Look into PhD application. OH GOD! No, there's no way I'm ready to do this today. That's a weekender.
- Dinner with Anna! It's been ages!
- Knitting circle at J's! YAAAYYY!
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
We arrived to find something I was worried about; vendors. The upper floor was covered with booths of people selling their stuff. OK, no big deal, Vanessa and I start to wander. We check out the downstairs; same thing. Booths and booths and products and wares. Have we just paid $10 to enter a bar/market?
That was exactly what we did. All I could get from vendors was a sales pitch. If I attempted to engage them in business discussion, they would edge away from me and tackle the next prospective consumer. In fact, some of the booths didn't even appear to be local businesses! A salon tried to sell me Bumble hair products, and had absolutely zero interest in my business card.
Evidently, there were others who were under the same impression as Vanessa and I. A nice lady walked up to us and said "Hi! Want my card?", to which we replied "Sure, want ours?" Obviously it was a contrived effort to shmingle and shmooze, but that lady was one of 3 people who I was able to chat with that night.
Don't get me wrong; the evening wasn't bad. It just wasn't exactly what I expected, or wanted. That's not their fault. The setup was lovely, and there were delicious hors d'oeuvres. I also did meet 2 noteworthy local businesswomen:
Angelina Wrona - artist. This lady is so hot. And I don't mean physically (although she wasn't hard on the eyes). Her art has a Mark Ryden/Tim Burton feel to it that I absolutely adore. Her paintings were huge, but not outrageously expensive. She was friendly and amenable; we had some nice conversation about art and all things dark, and I didn't get the feeling like she was trying to sell me her stuff. Her website.
Lana @ Paper Skirt - invitations, cards, paper goods. Vanessa and I wandered up to this little lady who eagerly answered all our crafy business questions (and there were a LOT of em!) She herself is doing her crafty business part-time, she is doing numerous xmas craft fairs including Glebe, Sandy Hill and Ladyfest, and she only started up in May! Impressive. If Cherry Pie was an event to inspire us business newbies, the event has Lana to thank. Her website.
So that's my review of Cherry Pie. I hope it didn't come out totally negative- that woulnn't be accurate. It just wasn't exactly what I was expecting. Vanessa described what we were looking for - a forum of businesspeople gathering solely for the purpose of supporting one another and answering questions and stuff. It's really not a bad idea... maybe a certain event-planner friend can get on that! *nudge nudge*
Yes J, I mean you! You're the only one who reads this anyway! But really, perhaps such a forum style meet and greet could be co-opted to the show and tell you've been thinking about. Kinda like a workshop, but not exactly?
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
But of course, this arrangement is impossible. Not only does life go on that wonderful week, but it tends to go on, and on, and on. This is the week of important events, deadlines, meetings, parties. This is the week someone will throw something completely unexpected at you and anticipate a rational response. How, I ask, is this fair?
The catalyst for this rant is that I'm all gussied up for Cherry Pie, a networking event for Ottawa businesswomen. A night to SHMOOZE, to shmingle, to be in a great mood and make friends with everyone around you. Perfect for my current state. Let me tell you, extravagant makeup is not compatible with sporadic crying fits. I couldn't be less in the mood for tonight.
On a more positive note... ?
Monday, November 12, 2007
I've had a tough time finding sincere, long-term friends. It's easy enough to have friends out of convenience; people you work with, classmates, neighbors... but sometimes these people slip out of your lives as soon as you stop seeing them regularly. They might have had intentions of maintaining a friendship with you, but let's face it; there are too many people out there and too much stuff on our plates to go out of our way for someone.
It's a cold and utilitarian way of thinking but after the weekend I've had, I've taken the opportunity to reevaluate my tendency to go out of my way for others. Be a friend to have a friend is a relationship of reciprocity, and an imbalanced one is frustrating. Lesson learned.
Friday, November 9, 2007
It began with volume 2 of the small business workshops at Carleton. The workshops are both inspiring and terrifying; they give you a LOT to consider when starting a business, but they provide you with so much information.
Then I met with Kevin for a mini photo-shoot; just the wallets 3 I've already completed and the 2 sets of coasters. I was a bit grumpy that this was all I had for him. If I had my labels in this week, I'd have had another 4 or 5 to shoot. Kevin's photography is so amazing though; I can't believe how much better the product looks in his photos than in mine. It's not just that they're nicer photos; tt makes a tremendous difference. He still wants to edit them slightly and add my logo to the bottom corner. Then he's going to print them and drop them off to me Sunday!
To any and all fledgling models out there; if you're looking for a good photographer to add glamour shots to your portfolio, I couldn't recommend Kevin more strongly. Apart from his excellent work ethic and commitment to quality, he is a very decent, stand-up guy. Undeadclothingco is lucky to have him!
To see his other work and/or contact him, visit his website.
Thursday, November 8, 2007
I didn't always loathe Mazim magazine they way I do now. I used to ignore the pictures of airbrushed, plastic hookers and enjoy the frank attitude of the articles and reviews.
Then one day the photos started to really bug me. Eventually I came to believe that these magazines that feature these fake women as ideals are not just annoying, they're harmful. They are doing voilence to women in 2 ways;
- Perpetuating an impossible beauty ideal hurts women physically and emotionally. Because of the sheer impossibility of these bodies, even very beautiful girls feel a pang of inadequacy. How can one be expected to feel good about herself if she can't airbrush away her so-called imperfections?
- Not only are women subconsciously comparing themselves to these fucking cartoons, so are men. And who can begrudge them looking for perfect dolls when these magazines insist that they're out there? They're not. They exist in photo editing software.
My distaste for the magazine has currently come to an all-time high; http://www.maxim.com/Entertainment/5Britneyspears/slideshow/7318/435.aspx
They've gone to the next level; rather than just promoting fake women, they're bashing real ones. Score 1 for patriarchy! The disgraceful list of the "5 most un-sexiest women alive" is comprised of Britney Spears, Madonna, Sandra Oh, Amy Winehouse and Sarah Jessica Parker at the top.
How surprising that they target five women who subvert the androcentric mold of how women should look/behave. Madonna- too old. Women are no longer sexy after 30, right? Britney Spears- five years ago you were jizzing all over her, and now she's crap? Admittedly, she's in pretty poor shape these days, but she's only fucked up because her sense of self-worth was hypersexualized since she was 16 years old. Giver her a fucking break, please. Drugs and tattoos are cool if you're a male rocker like Tommy Lee, but not for women like Amy Winehouse. And Sandra Oh's presence on the list is blatant racism. We Westerners like our Asians skanky and submissive, not educated and assertive. Fook-yu!
When interviewed about the matter, Sarah Jessica Parker shrugged it off. She is quoted as saying "I believe in the old 'sticks and stones' philosophy, so frankly their words don't come close to hurting. I don't think I am (sexy) either." Undaunted, Maxim continues to kick her while she's down, making fun of her dismissal of the magazine, citing that she took it in "gallop—er, stride" http://www.maximonline.com/SarahJessicaParkerHasSenseofHumorStillGroadie/articles/9396.aspx
I am literally enraged by this. I wish I could do more than simply boycott the magazine. Sending an angry letter to the editor would undoubtedly submit myself to allegations of being a fat, ugly, man-hating dyke-feminist. So what can I do? I write this rant to let out some steam.
Next time I buy Maxim magazine, it will be because the store was out of toilet paper.
The more I think about it, the more certain I am that I should bring some kind of portfolio to the Cherry Pie event. I mean, it sounds like a pretty unique opportunity. I've booked my photographer for tomorrow; he's going to shoot the wallets and coasters that I have, print them up with my logo in the corner, and then I'm going to go buy a leather portfolio cover or something. I mean, may was well. It couldn't hurt.
The only thing is, I really wish my labels were in! As it stands, I have 3 wallets and 2 sets of coasters for Kevin to shoot. My first 3 wallets; as much as I love them, I think my subsequent wallets with stiffer interfacing are superior. However, they're not finished (because I'm waiting on labels) and I certainly can't shoot them without the taping, exterior and strap!
I think this is a sign that undeadclothingco has officially become my small business; replete with stressful deadlines! Just kidding.
Now I'm off to scour the web for some tutorials on how to throw together a decent portfolio.
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
How cute is that little frigger?! I have some ideas for tweaking which are apparently welcome because I am apparently also "art director" of undeadclothingco. How rad it that? I must remember to add it to my resume.
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
Still waiting on business cards and labels. Maybe today?
I'd really like to have them in time for Cherry Pie; a meet and shmooze event for Ottawa's businesswomen. I found out about it through facebook. I looked it up on Ottawabusiness.com, and the event got good reviews for past years. The event listing says to definately bring business cards to circulate around, but I'm wondering if I should be bringing some product too. I mean, my business card just links to my website, which sucks. Maybe I can get it looking up by the event, which is Tues Nov 12. at Helsinki lounge.
Today: T.A. assignments, thesis thesis thesis
Sunday, November 4, 2007
I also got in contact with a friend of mine, who I'd like to hire to do some work on my website. He's supposed to send me some sites he's done so I have an idea of what he can do. The idea of having a website up and running without ads is very exciting.
Still waiting for my custom labels! I'm starting to think about contacting the seller; I don't want to because we had such a pleasant transaction in the first place. I don't really feel like whining or nagging. Then again, if I'm wanting to run my own teeny tiny business, maybe I should practice busting some balls. She gets till Wednesday.
Thursday, November 1, 2007
He was a good sport though; let me put zombie makeup all over him and drag him out to the bar. He looked fantastic. The fact that he was already ill helped his undead look by a lot! My costume was pretty good too, I think. Some stupid chick came up to me outside and exclaimed that I was dressed up as a "make-out slut", a term I didn't know existed. Apparently she mistook the blood all around my mouth for smeared lipstick? Brilliant.
Tonight is knitting circle as the first day of November. November has to be THESIS MONTH! I've been slacking long enough. According to the timeline on my research proposal, I'm supposed to be DONE and EDITING by 2008! I'm not in bad shape though; my supervising is reviewing a potential chapter segment, and I think I know what I'm doing. I hope!