Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Babylon Bonanza V

I am very pleased to announce that undeadclothingco will be on sale at the next Basement Artists show; Babylon Bonanza V! Saturday January 3rd at Babylon nightclub (317 Bank st). Tickets are $10 in advance, and $15 at the door.

In addition to the excellent artists and artisans who will be vending there, I'm really stoked to announce that The Goddamn Goddamns will be playing! A couple of posts ago, I mentioned the Big John Bates show and how I had a blast. The Goddamn Goddamns opened up for them, and they were excellent. Check out their myspace page. Rockabilly with a touch of tongue-in-cheek humor. I'm very excited that they're playing the show.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Speaking of selfishness...

Ahh, Wilde's...



Never failing to stun me with your insensitivity. Especially when one considers the nature of your business. Call the kettle black much?

I am not posting to defend one side or the other of the current OC Transpo strike that is currently devastating the city of Ottawa. Though I'm usually a union supporter, and have supported striking as a legitimate negotiating tactic, I am extremely inconvenienced at OC Transpo's decision to strike. I have been walking 45 mins in the snow to reach my place of work, and have put off doing groceries and christmas shopping to an extent that troubles me. That being said, I would request the people educate themselves on the situation before spitting on picketers and putting shithead ignoramus signs up in their windows.

http://www.octranspo.com/Main_MenuE.asp

If you're not interested in the nitty-gritty of the dispute, bear in mind that it's about scheduling and sick leave. Do you want your bus drivers working when they're ill or overworked?

Guess i'll be buying my dildos elsewhere.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Big John Bates!!

There are a mere few people I know whose musical tastes I trust without question.
1- my friend Ian. One of my oldest and closest friends who is also a brilliant musician in his own right.
2- my friend Jeremy. When he sends me an mp3 via MSN messenger, I download it and put it on my mp3 player without question.
These are my no-questions-asked authorities on all things music.
But when my friend Marcus told me there was a rockabilly show Monday night at Zaphods that was not to be missed, I took him up on it. He is now the newest member of my a-list.

I agreed to check out this rockabilly show with Jeremy after an 8-hour shift tonight. Zaphods is an intimate venue for shows, so I expected a small crowd (Monday night, after all) and some good tunes. Big John Bates and the Voodoo Dolls are comprised of John himself on guitar and vocals, Scaroline on double-bass, and an exemplary drummer whose name currently escapes me (my deepest apologies). They tour with the Voodoo Dolls, a burlesque floor show that took me from impressed to astounded in minutes. Their routines were replete with full-on narratives of badass chicks rocking out, retro-style. Curvacious women with real tits, flashing glimpses up their skirts and swinging flaming pasties from their nipples. This did nothing to detract from the awesome music, which was consistently high in energy and authentic rockabilly beats and basslines.

I really cannot say enough about the show tonight. Download their albums if you will, or buy them if you're so fiscally secure and inclined... but I have to insist that if they come to your town (and they very well might; hailing all the way from Vancouver, they played Belleville last week. Belleville.) SEE THEM LIVE. I would have gladly shelled out twice the hard-earned dough I spent for the orgy of the senses I was treated to tonight.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

*Whew!*

My family's decision to draw names for the xmas gift exchange comes not a minute too soon. I have never been so disorganized for xmas before. I'm usually planning and plotting and starting holiday presents in September!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

the Antiheroine

Having finished season 2 of the Tudors, I've been looking to start another series on DVD to fill my pathetic lonely evenings spent knitting in front of the TV. A friend from work lent me "Californication", a series about a writer, Hank, who muddles through his miserable life of trying to win back his ex-girlfriend who is now engaged to a successful albeit dull shmuck. The series essentially follows Hank's day-to-day life of alcoholism and recklesshedonism, as he drinks incessantly, and screws everyone and anyone he lays eyes on (usually at the bar, where he spends every other scene).

What makes this show bearable is Hank's sardonic wit, which permeates every scene and gives an otherwise morbid setting an air of... what's the word? Humility? Hank is a total asshole, but his sharp tongue and his unfailing ability to defeat/humiliate his opponent (no matter how drunk/stoned/naked Hank may be at the time) is always entertaining and often hilarious. He admits to drowning in alcoholism and a "sea of meaningless pussy". I would object to this dehumanization of women's genitals, but the I cannot argue with the way women fall to Hank's feet. But I digress. Hank's behavior puts him in a rather interesting archetypal character that has been popping up everywhere in popular fiction these days; the antihero whose behavior is reprehensible, but who remains nonetheless endearing and likeable.

You might recognize this character. He is Jack Bauer from 24, Henry viii from the Tudors, Tony Soprano and House. Men who unabashedly and unapologetically spit in the face of conventional behavior and respect for authority, but who nonetheless emerge in the right (or, in the case of the Tudors and Sopranos, on top). The sociologist in me wonders at this antihero and at his implications for 2008 North American ideology. Are rules and procedures no longer necessary? Do ends justify means? Futhermore, are we to "lighten up" over political scandals and mishaps?

It is not surprising that this antihero can only be male. Women who ignore or resist social conventions are not so celebrated. Carrie Bradshow comes dangerously close to subverting the archetypal woman with her ambitious career and open sexuality, but she stays within social bounds with her materialism and pervasive longing for the love of her life. Not to bash the show; I am a huge fan of Sex in the City, and think Carrie Bradshaw is an important step in the right direction, but she will never be able to get away with what her male counterparts do.

I dub this phenomenon "Courtney Love syndrome" in honor of another woman who is continually lynched in the media for her inability or unwillingness to conform to normative standards of womanhood, wifehood and motherhood. Although her behavior does not differ significantly from her celebrity male colleagues, such transgressions are evidently not acceptable for a woman. To be continued...

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Photos of my costume to come! I think?

My Halloween was not a disappointment this year because my expectations were low to begin with. I usually get really excited for Halloween and then get so annoyed with the stupid, stupid costumes. I'm sure you've all noticed that Halloween has become an excuse for a certain portion of the population to "skank out".

"I'm being a cop... a sexy cop."
"I'm being a fireman... a sexy fireman."
"I'm being Gilles Duceppe... ok, that one was good."

But I know you know what I mean. Halloween costumes has become overrun with sluttified occupations and sarcastic jabs at popular culture. Amy Winehouses and Gwen Stefanis galore. What happened to Halloween being scary? I gladly overlooked the zillion Heath Ledger-eqsue Jokers because at least the Joker is villainous. The Halloween parties I've been attending for the past few years have beein sorely lacking in classic vampires, ghouls and goblins (not counting the "sexy" vampires, of course. There's always a few Elviras.)

It certainly wasn't my first Halloween dressed as my favorite undead character, but this year, I outdid myself; for example, I wore white-colored contacts that made me stumble through a cloudy haze all night. I also wore a flesh-colored bodysuit that was so matted to my chest with fake blood that I had to wear my costume into the shower to peel it off. I. was. SCARY.

People didn't recognize me, and once they did, they didn't really want to chat. It actually became annoying. This is the reason, dear readership, that I don't have a gallery of glossy and photoshopped pictures for you to enjoy. I swear that I didn't avoid the camera as I usually do, I simply wasn't approached for photos. In the end, I consider it a testament to the effectiveness of my costume.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

RIP ORD

No self respecting Ottawa blogger can post today without making mention of the weather. I don't mind the snow. I really don't. It's the cold I don't like. In fact, I greatly preferred my walk home from the bus stop after work in a blizzard to my walk to the bus stop this morning in the freezing rain. No contest. That's all I'm going to say about it.

I have sadder news to report than a snow storm.

This blog has seen many entries about the Ottawa Roller Derby league, and what an impact the ORD has had on my life. Emerging from the end of a long-term relationship and stuck in a nasty rut of a thesis, roller derby was exactly what I needed to regain my confidence and self-esteem while meeting some very interesting and inspiring women in Ottawa.

When I was told of the existence of roller derby in Ottawa, I discovered that the league consisted of one team; the loud and proud Bytown Blackhearts. For a team to come together and prosper is noteworthy in itself, but these women learned roller derby the hard way; through trial and error. Without an existing team in the city, the Blackhearts learned the game as they went along. By the time I started attending "fresh meat" practices for the Ottawa Roller Derby league, the Blackhearts were a year old; fully registered and ready to roll.

The "fresh meat" practices were recruiting for a second team in Ottawa; one that could benefit from the Blackhearts' experience and could eventually provide them with another team to practice with and scrimmage against. For myself as well as the other women who now comprise the Capital Carnage, the Blackhearts were the ultimate big sister team; older, tougher, more than a little intimidating, but ultimately there to help the Carnage grow and develop for the love of the game.

This relationship explains the pain I feel at learning that the Bytown Blackhearts and the Ottawa Roller Derby league have split into two autonomous groups. I do not care to comment upon the nature of the split as I understand it; it's a complicated issue to which I am only privy to certain parts. Whatever the cause, I can only speak for the effect which I believe will be felt by every member of the Bytown Blackhearts and the Capital Carnage alike. I think my friend and teammate Kristina (Fembot Fury) said it best when she likened our position to being the children of divorced parents.

It saddens me that the split will undoubtedly change my experience of being a rollergirl in Ottawa, although it's difficult to say for certain exactly how it will change. I have a feeling that as with most breakups, there will be positive and negative effects both in the short and long term. Whatever the fallout, I hope time shows the decision to be beneficial to both groups.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Halloween 2008

Less than a week away and I don't even give a shit.

What's wrong with me? I'm usually starting to get excited for next Halloween in late December. This year, I'm just not feeling it...

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Well, that's disappointing

So, having discovered that I have a somewhat loyal following of readers, what do I do? I go dark for days. Is anything more annoying than visiting someone's blog and seeing the same Horrorpops photo every single time? Believe me, it annoys me just as much.

When my thesis defense date finally approached I was hesitant at the idea of a full-time office job at the government, which is where I understand most sociology grads to go. I worried that a regimented 9 - 5 job in front of a computer would kill my creativity; that I'd come home from work exhausted and fall asleep in front of the TV every night. I asked around and found that to the contrary, friends of mine who worked office jobs were pretty content with their work environments and hours. That the consistent hours enabled them to make use of their free time more meaningfully. That they can call in sick, leave early or get away for the weekend as circumstances require. This is far from the case with retail/shift work.

All this to say that I've been working full-time for the first time in my life, and I'm finding little time for anything else. I haven't been to the gym. I haven't been making stuff for undeadclothingco. I haven't been updating my blog. I haven't been in good health due to lack of meaningful rest (and my perpetually shitty diet). Chores are piling up.

I didn't intend to update my blog by bemoaning my daily drudgery. Unfortunately, it's all I really have to report as of late. I'm not miserable or anything, I'm just falling behind on life and need to allocate my time better. That's it.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Hell yeah!

Horrorpops in Toronto tonight!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

I've been spotted

It's happened once before, I guess I should get used to it. Last time, someone recognized me from a teeny tiny photo of me in my blog profile. I've since replaced that one with a cute pinup zombie girl, but I often forget that my blog links to my page which features a HUGE photo of me. Sitting here in my room, the blogosphere is so vast and abstract; it's hard to imagine an actual person sitting at their computer and reading this.

Don't get me wrong, I certainly don't mind being sighted! Yesterday I was complimented on my writing, which was tremendously flattering. My supervisor would have a bird if he saw all the gratuitous semicolons in each and every blog entry, but he won't (probably).

For your interest, both my blog and undeadclothing.ca employ google analytics code to give me some rudimentary information as to who is visiting, when, and from whence. Don't worry; I'm not stalking you or stealing your identities. All I get is is how many visitors, what time of day, and how they found the site. That's all. This blog sees about 8 visitors per day, on the average. There are peaks after Basement Artist shows because I am able to distribute business cards among a demographic that may or may not blog-browse. I always assume that there are 5-6 "core" readers who bookmark my blog and return (my roommate, my boyfriend, my sister, and fellow Ottawa bloggers) and then a handful of randoms. Maybe not so?

Lurking reader, say hello! The cute girl with the awesome purple-streaked bangs who spotted me at work yesterday can attest that I don't bite. If anything, I'll giggle incredulously at being sighted and complimented. Thanks again!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

So big-shot, you're done your masters. WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO NOW??

This question sucks, and I'm tired of hearing it. Please don't ask me this. From now on, if anyone asks, I'm referring them to this blog entry.

Answer 1) - I'm staying at Top. It's retail and I've been there for 6 years, but it's a damn good work environment with good pay and many fringe benefits. I'd make more money at a cushy government job, but I'm not quite ready for that yet. Why? Read on

Answer 2) - I'm looking to move. I've lived in Ottawa all my life, and whenever I felt the need to leave I couldn't because I was in school. Now school is done and I can go wherever I want. Start fresh. Very appealing

Answer 3) - well, not really another answer, but also noteworthy: undeadclothingco is doing well. My confidence was down due to low productivity (thanks again, thesis) and lack of etsy action, but the September Basement Artists show both cleaned out my stock and bolstered my ambition. My roommate reminds me that I am my own worst critic, and that I'd churn out far more stock if I wasn't such a perfectionist. Seeing someone's eyes light up when they see an object on my table really does make it all worthwhile.

So what am I going to do now? I'm going to work; at Top and on undeadclothingco. I'd like to get more hands-on about my website and reorganize my finances. I'm going to continue enjoying roller derby and make time for "Crafty Itch", a craft night a friend of mine is organizing. I'm going to keep an eye on Toronto for good jobs and housing opportunities; I already know of a few people who might be willing to live with a crafty lady and her fat cat.

I'm also thinking about segregating an undeadclothingco blog from my personal one. I'd like feedback on this question; I'm torn because I feel like the personal stuff (ie- school, roller derby, rants, etc) add some humanity to undeadclothingco. Then again, if undead had it's own blog I might be more inclined to update with undeadclothing-related news (ie- 4 new wallets, new handbag design, upcoming shows, etc)

Hopefully, this is the last blog entry tagged with the word "thesis".

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

mini-update

- BC rules! Having fun.
- Best Basement Artists show EVER!!
- I like pop-tarts

Sunday, September 14, 2008



As I've told people who ask how it feels to be done; it doesn't feel real yet.

I defended my thesis at 2pm on September 10th, the most stressful hour and a half of my life thus far. My examiners were tough, which I expected given my flashy topic. It's interesting how exhausting it can be to sit and answer questions; after the first hour my eyes were glazing over and I had to ask one examiner to repeat the question, having zoned out.

When I was sent into the hall for the panel to discuss my fate, I was sure I'd have major revisions to do. I expected at least some. For a thesis defense, the panel can arrive at one of three options:
1) thesis accepted "as is" - no revisions
2) thesis accepted with minor revisions - can range from adding/deleting a paragraph, to rewriting a few pages
3) thesis rejected

Apparently, the department won't convene for a defense if #3 is even an option; for me to have gotten a defense date meant it was good enough to pass, so it was just a matter of how much revisions needed to be done. I was nervous about this, because in order to graduate on time and avoid further tuition payments, I need my finished thesis to be in to the department by the 19th of September. Not a lot of time.

I was told I'd have to wait outside for about 30 mins, but they came to get me after 10. When the chairperson said my thesis was being accepted "as is", I think I might have actually fainted a little bit. Not from elation or pride, but just from sheer shock. My examiners put me through the ropes, and I felt like one perticular line of questioning had me backed into a corner I couldn't defend my way out of. I do have to do some minor grammatical revisions. As luck would have it, my external examiner was from the English department, and found issue with my gratuitous overuse of the semicolon (which I'm sure my diligent readers have noticed I like to use while blogging.)

Immediately after the defense, my supervisor took me for a few beers in the campus grad bar. Cold beer on an anxious, empty stomach went straight to my head and the rest of the evening was a blur of hi-fives and congratulations.

Now, less than a week later, I'm working on the revisions and I still can't believe it's almost over. I work a fair bit this week, and there's a Basement Artists show at Babylon on Saturday night. Sunday morning I'm off to Vancouver/Victoria for a little vacation. I'm hoping that when I return home from BC, I'll really be able to feel that my masters degree is over and done with.

Then, on to bigger and better things (?)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

In defense

A prof once suggested that all graduate students keep a blog to practice writing and writing and writing; writing about something, writing about nothing, writing whether or not you feel like it. I don't agree about writing when you don't feel like it, as this makes for the most tedious and dull of posts, but it's still good advice. Maybe if I were a more diligent blogger, I wouldn't be having so much trouble writing an opening statement for my thesis defense tomorrow.

That's right; thesis defense tomorrow, haven't done the opening statement. I'm drawing a blank. It's a mere 10-12 min speech, which I've done a million times before. I even have permission to sit and read the damn thing; memorization and visual accompaniments are not expected. So why am I having so much trouble?

a) I'm sick to death of my thesis and don't want to talk about (much less think about) zombies for a long, long time.
b) Persistent distraction of a romantic variety
c) Other stresses/concerns; need of a new job, neglect of undeadclothingco.

Pick one, they'll all do. 24 hours from now I'll be freaking out in nervousness and 36 hours from now I'll be drunk with relief.

I received a very nice message from a woman on etsy.com who stumbled across my website and blog having seen my bat curtains on craftster.org. She took the time to send me a message letting me know how she found me and that she liked my stuff and plans to tell her friends about me. In the abstract imagination of interweb possibilities I'm sure this kind of thing happens all the time, but it's not often that people take the time to let you know about it. Now that I know how good it feels to get a message like that, I'll start writing some.

- I've written an email of appreciation for Katie who maintains the
Oh My Stars craft site
. The site is packed with easy-to-follow tutorials of some of the most popular DIY projects out there, from T-shirt surgery to knitting. The amount of time this girl puts into her site is awe-inspiring to say the least, not to mention her willingness to share techniques for free rather than just selling her creations.

- I should write one to Veronica Varlow at Danger Dame. I've found her attitude and aesthetic to be very inspiring; in my head, I think I've envisioned undeadclothing to look a lot like what she's got going on.

- I've donated to support craftster, which remains a source of inspiration and encouragement for all my crafting endeavours after several years.

It really isn't enough to be another blip on the hit counter. Of the apparent 119 visitors I've had on this blog, I could count the ones I've heard from on one hand. Take the time to shout at someone who's inspired you! Make their day.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

undeadclothingco

A long overdue update for undeadclothingco! The website needs a total revamp, but I've added some new items to etsy... here's a sample





Monday, September 1, 2008

What are you looking at?

I've started noticing that I'm being more.... noticed, lately. Not me entirely, but my chest. Lately I've noticed that lots of people full-on stare at my tits.

At first I just wrote it off: ie - "that guy is a perv", or "that lady just wishes hers were bigger/smaller/whatever". Then I started wondering if I was dressing skankier all of a sudden. Were my tank tops too revealing? If so, had they been that way all summer? Why weren't people looking at me like that in June? Then it hit me. They were; but before I had contacts, I didn't know it.

Yet another great example of how perception shapes reality.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Everyone has that one booze they steer clear of. I commonly hear "I can't drink gin/tequila, it makes me fight/black out." Jack Daniels is my kryptonite, and we had a good tangle last night. This morning, the evidence shows that I fell off my skateboard and scraped my hip something fierce, but still managed to take my contacts out. I'll have to let my friends fill in the rest of the evening.

I do remember that the bar was showing the entire Back to the Future series on a monitor above the bar. I recall noticing the credit "Billy Zane" in the first two movies and asking anyone who would listen where Billy Zane appeared in the film. I figured he must have been one of Biff Tannen's crew and wikipedia confirms it, but I couldn't find his face in the film.

Back to bed for me. Tha hangover is coming, and with it fragments of memories of stupid conversations and embarassing slurrings and injuries as-of-yet unnoticed.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Finished my curtains!

Something to lighten my ugly view from my useless bedroom window while darkening the mood of my room; bats!



Thursday, August 21, 2008

Tsk.

I understand that disappointment is the result of unmet expectations. As such, when I'm disappointed I like to re-examine my expectations to make sure they were realistic in the first place. That way, I can avoid similar disappointment in the future. Sometimes I expect too much of people, but sometimes people just aren't cool at all. As my good friend Kristina put it; "Fuck me once, shame on me. Fuck me twice... oh wait."
Nevermind. I'll leave it at that.

The headaches I had anticipated having from my new contacts were actually worse than I had anticipated; I wore them from 2pm to about 8pm before they became unbearable and I had to take them out. The optician guy did warn that I should ease into it. It sure is exciting to see without glasses; I was reading every sign on the bus like a first-grader who just learned how to read.

In a superhuman effort to not be in a bad mood today, I share this video. It's impossible to be bummed when raccoons are so awesome.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

SO busy

Appointments. Derby demos at the ex. Thesis work. Work work. I will accomplish more this week than I have all summer, I think.

My glasses are in, and I'm very excited to pick them up tomorrow. My vision has gotten so bad over the past few years, I'm almost nervous to start being able to SEE again. I anticipate headaches, actually. I think I'll discover that I see a lot of people I know on the street and I just never said hello before because I didn't know it. Could this be the reason I'm so unpopular? I'll say it is.

I have a new rule; no more promoting undeadclothingco until I have new stock and have revamped the website. At the ex yesterday I gave out my card to some potentially important contacts and it occurred to me today that my website is old, contains old stock that I've already sold, and looks like ass. I've been putting off working on it until I'm done my thesis which is fair enough, but I should put off sending people there until I'm sure they'll be impressed.

Thesis defense date is still looking like September 10th at 2pm. I'm pleased this date falls on a Wednesday; my favorite night to go out in Ottawa. When I'm all done and defended I'm planning on taking a trip out to BC, after which I'll start really looking for a new job. Workshop never contacted me for an interview, but I guess I'm supposed to follow-up, aren't I? I suppose I was overconfident with my retail and craft experience... aesthetically, I don't think I'm what they're looking for. It makes me realize that I take certain aspects of Top of the World for granted; I can roll in wearing whatever I want. I can dress for comfort and style; I hear people talk about "work clothes" and "dress shoes" and having to have their shoulders covered and taking out facial piercings and whatnot.

As such, I have seriously considered staying put. The pay is good, the hours are flexible and I do so love the people I work with. It's one of those things where I feel like I need a change, even though things aren't bad the way they are. I may wind up doing what many former Top-staff have done before me and come back after finding that the greener pastures aren't so green at all. At least I'll have given it a shot.

Monday, August 11, 2008

So I don't go to the gym for like, a week and a half? And I feel/look like I haven't been all summer. It's almost discouraging me from going back. If I can't maintain a schedule and progress is so fleeting, what's the point?

Roller derby kicked my ass yesterday. I have significantly less energy and endurance than I did just a few weeks ago. As usual, I'll blame my thesis, which kept me in my room in front of my computer all last week. Sometimes I daydream about the life I'll have when this shiteating thing is over; how I'll get my shit together and finally not feel like my life is on "standby". Exhilirating.

That being said, I'd better get back at it. It's serious crunch time, as I've been given a tentative defence date of September 10th... a month from yesterday.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Kittens!!

As promised. Holy god, try not to gag on the cuteness.













Friday, August 1, 2008

So my ass-cheek bruise isn't as impressive as I had hoped; there are two purplish lines forming horizontally across my inner-hip... it really looks like a bite. Not nearly as tough as a gnarly bruise. I thought of taking photos to chronicle it's progression on here, but bite-marks on my ass might be a little too sensational for this here blog.

I heard back from one of my supervisors yesterday and am already knee-deep in revisions. At first I was mad; I had hoped my thesis would be out of my hands for the weekend, enabling me to party sans conscience. No such luck. But the good news is that I'll have one supervisor's revisions done by the time I get the other supervisor's feedback. I got my film studies lashing, now I'm waiting on the sociology one.

I am kittensitting this weekend for a friend/colleague/neighbor of mine who takes on foster kitties from the humane society and is going to be away for a few days. I will be responsible for Geebee, a 7-week old kitten who is so named for her one green eye and one blue eye. I will also be resonsible for Missouri, who is twice the size of Geebee and is of rather nervous disposition. I am told he will hiss like a snake, but he's all talk and is rather cuddly when you pick him up. I'm sure I will have photos of these two for you next week.

In other news, Ottawa Roller Derby will be showing off a fair bit this month. We are scheduled to operate a booth throughout the Ottawa Exhibition, and are doing demonstrations to raise awareness of the sport as well as to gather donations. Also, we will be trying to march as best we can in quads in the Ottawa Pride festival on Aug. 24th. I've never been to a Pride festival, so I'm doubly excited for the cultural event a well as an opportunity to skate in the street with the girls.

Back to thesis for me. Why won't the mail come?

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Cranky

2 reasons:

- workmen outside working on out eavestroughs are noisy. Their tools are loud and they keep cursing in French.

- I fell HARD at roller derby last night, and it appears that my left ass-cheek is unuseable. I wasn't able to sleep on my back or on my left side, if you can believe it. Even now, sitting at my desk, I'm leaning toward the right and it's still uncomfortable. No bruise yet, but it's coming.

Why did I fall so hard? Possibly because I was so excited about having these bad boys!!



It is astonishing how much good equipment can affect your performance. I knew that, having bought my first snowboard at Sport-Chek, but these skates... wow. Needless to say, my wheels are black and I suspect I'll be switching up the laces sometime soon.

I've been tagged in one of these things. Here goes,

1. Favorite ethnic food?
Indian

2. Something you’ve always wanted to do?
Start my own business? No, that's a lie. I guess i'd have to say retire.

3. Favorite color?
Lately, lime green.

4. Something you collect?
Dust

5. Something you do to relax?
Read, knit, crochet, pinot grigio

7. Bloggers i am going to tag:
Jennie, Lisa and Jess!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A month ago I criticized a study that showed what percentage of women were willing to shave their heads, spend a night in jail, sacrifice a toe, etc to lose ten lbs. I would give a finger to be done my thesis. No problem.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Sephora online charges ten bucks shipping and handling! Then they do the whole "free shipping for purchases over $50" type shit, and I'm totally buying into it. I'm going to buy more stuff to keep from getting ripped off, all for goddamn lip gloss.

I wish I didn't have to buy online; I was so excited when the new store opened up in the mall and I could actually see and test the products. However, I have discovered that the testers are always in terrible shape. I was wanting to buy a plum eyeliner and I thought I saw one by Urban Decay I liked, but the tester was too jacked up for me to even get some on my hand. Weak. If I had been able to check it out, it might have contributed to my online order. I might go back to being an exclusive M-A-C consumer; service is inconsistent and prices are high, but the counters are always impeccable.

In other news, the Underpass was a lot more pleasant yesterday. I attribute this to 1) the fact that it didn't piss rain all day long, 2) there were performers playing guitar, which fought boredom and 3) I had more than 4 hours sleep. I sold a shirt, but to a fellow artisan. Passersby were rather ambivalent and I really can't blame them; my stock is tragically low as of late. Thesis work is coming in hard right now, and I have plans to go spend a few days at a cottage this week.
Undeadclothingco is going to have to snooze for a bit. I'm not sure I should commit to any more dates at the Underpass until I finalize my plans for August which will ideally be comprised of a finished thesis waiting to be defended, a new job and a little vacation... somewhere...

Monday, July 21, 2008

Two showings in one weekend!

My afternoon at the Underpass project was plagued by rain and the fact that I had seen the Dark Knight at midnight the night before; four hours sleep does not a perky vendor make. There wasn't much traffic, due in part to the weather. I found it to be a pretty busy walkway where businesspersons were bustling through; no time to browse and no tourists. I did make a sale though, the very first wallet I had ever made. I'm eager to see what this Friday is like; I'm undecided as to whether or not to participate in the project in August.

The Basement Artists show was great. I was a bit grumpy at first because I had to miss a roller derby practice to set up at 5pm (an important RD practice too; we were going to vote on the team name and colors) but I've had such a busy past few days, I didn't mind an afternoon off. The show was at Zaphods, and I really liked the location of my set-up. It was... cozy. No lights in my face, the music wasn't too loud; I was infinately more comfortable than at the Babylon show. It's nice to be able to chat with people looking at my stuff, to answer questions about how stuff is made or just to receive general compliments.

I sold a set of coasters and a zippered pouch, both to very enthusiastic-looking customers. There was another booth of leather vendors; some very gothic/medieval gauntlets, corsets and stuff. I fell in love with their blackish-red leather roses and bought one for a measly $10. I actually wanted to offer more, it's so pretty.



And look how nice it looks on my dresser, with my black roses picture frame (which needs a photo in it, incidentally)



I love it. I should have bought a proper dozen.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Underpass project tomorrrow! Basement Artists show Sunday! Gah!

Friday, July 11, 2008

What I've accomplished today;

- worked on my conclusion (13 pages down!)
- drafted and cut out patterns for size medium clothing
- mucked around with my etsy store

Yet to accomplish;

- gym!
- rent Diary of the Dead for tonight... I should mention it in my conclusion
- make stuff!!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

First etsy sale!

So this morning I woke up to a nice surprise; my first sale online at etsy.com!

I have to admit, I didn't think this day would come for a long time. I listed a few items on etsy just the other night (2 wallets and a zippered pouch), just to get the hang of how etsy listings work. I had no idea what to charge for shipping, so I guessed at it. The girl who bought the Lady wallet was in NY, and my shipping estimate turned out to be right on the money!

I dropped it in the mail this afternoon. Now I have combined excitement at getting the item to her (she's probably excited to get it) with extreme seller's anxiety. This girl shelled out serious dough for something she hasn't gotten to physically see, touch and handle. My description was pretty straightforward... I would just hate for someone to be disappointed. I'm eager to hear back from her when she receives it in the mail next week!

This sale makes up for the fact that the Underpass project has been delayed by one week. I was supposed to be out there tomorrow, but I guess the 18th will be my first sitting. This is just as well; I've been busy with my thesis and haven't had a chance to make much new stuff since the last Basement Artists show. Now, I have another week to spruce up my inventory, and my online sale this morning was definately a source of motivation! Go me!

I think I'm going to have to invest in a good camera if I'm going to make use of etsy. Kevin is great for complex shoots involving models and stuff, but I can't ask him to take hours out of his life to shoot every single wallet, purse and shirt I churn out.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Such good things; so little time to relish them

Good thing #1 -

I've been given the go-ahead to compose my conclusion. Glory hallelujah. This isn't to say that when I'm done the conclusion I'll be done my thesis; there'll be tremendous revisions. When I reflect on all the various mind-states I've had over the past year, I can't help but wonder how this paper will somehow flow together to make a cohesive argument.

I've been using bits and pieces of old papers to supplement my conclusion (I'm allowed to do that! I checked) and I was actually laughing out loud today at what one prof let me get away with. I have half a mind to email him about it. The paper I wrote for his seminar reads like... well, like a blog entry. I'm incredulous that it got me an A-.

Good thing #2 -

My application to be part of the Underpass project has been accepted! Undeadclothingco will be vending at the Underpass every Friday in July, starting the 11th. I'll post more info as I get it (ie- where exactly in that area, and what times). The Underpass Project combined with the upcoming Basement Artists show on the 20th make for a very busy living dead girl.

Good thing #3 and onward -

Stuff is pretty good. I'm really digging being involved in roller derby and I've been in a happy place socially for the past while. I'm hoping my general contentedness manifests in my writing and sewing as it has with my mood and demeanor.

Monday, June 23, 2008

It's sunny when I'm busy and it pours rain when I'm not. Not that I'm ever really busy, or ever really not busy. My days are a nonstop swelling of stuff I have to do, none of which is particularly urgent and/or important. The rain is fully getting me down.

Things to do:
- thesis. Fear and loathing and a master's thesis.
- make... stuff? Again, lack of inspiration is problematic.
- get driver's license.
- get new job

K, forget it. This is depressing.

STUFF I LOOK FORWARD TO:
- sunshine! It has to come back sometime
- roller derby practice tonight!
- Top of the World's 15th anniversary party Friday!
- Canada Day liver abuse
- the rest of my life?

Friday, June 20, 2008

Ottawa Roller Derby on A-Channel

Please to enjoy: http://www.achannel.ca/ottawa/promo/webcast/vid-beas.html

Can you spot the Living Dead Girl in this clip?

Hint: meow

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

So I'm a bad update-er

but in my defense, I haven't had consistent internet access for a long-ass time. It's back now, having returned to normality the exact same time my roommate returned from Greece. Coincidence? I think not. I'm inclined to think our internet connection wasn't down with all my facebook/blogging nonsense and missed Jenn's diligent research online. In the same vein, my cold water pressure is back on. This is directly because Jenn is better at raising hell with the construction workers than i am, but again, I like to imagine the house prefers washing her clothes and dishes and body.

I have been steadily working toward the next show in July, trying out some new shapes and techniques. The findings and studs Jesse gave me are giving me ideas for straps; handbags and clutches with shoulder or wrist-straps. This turns a simple lined-zippered bag into a purse, which is infinately more useful (and more coveted in our accessory-obsessed culture nowadays).

I've also invested in some simple sewing patterns and pattern-drafting books and tools. I figure I should invest on making sturdy, reusable patterns of of a variety of sizes. It's tedious cutting and tracing, but I think it'll be infinately worth it in the long run. If I claim that undeadclothingco embraces alternate conceptions of beauty, I can't continue making everything in my size. It wouldn't be right.

Ever since the last Basement Artists show, I've kept a business log of profits and expenses... keeping receipts and making sure I'm "under budget" (my budget being the amount I made at the show). This probably isn't the most orthodox method, but it's a start. I bought the book Craft Inc by Meg Mateo Ilasco, which is all about how to turn your creative hobby into a business. From what i've read so far, the book runs the gamut between inspiring the hell out of me and making me want to run up to my office and sew all day, to scaring the shit out of me and making me want to throw out my sewing stuff so I'm not tempted by it anymore. All the legal jargon turns me off, and some of the accounting terms are way over my head; but I'm sure it's good to have a reference like that on my shelf.

What else have I been up to? I dunno. ROLLER DERBY?! My latest obsession goes down two nights a week here in Ottawa. The Ottawa Bytown Blackhearts have been a league-sanctioned team for over a year now, and are looking to make another team so as to be able to scrimmage together in the city. My first practice was last Tuesday. Not only was it an introduction to the rules and logic of the sport, it was my first time EVER on roller skates. Now, I have experience with a variety of board-sports; skateboarding, snowboarding and wakeboarding. Being competent in these three engenders a kind of board-logic that sticks with you, and that you can apply to other board sports. I've never surfed, for example, but if I were to learn alongside someone who has never skated or shredded, I think I would have an advantage. Anyway, roller-skating (on quads; no inline here!) calls upon more of a wheel-logic than a board-logic for me; to control oneself on rollerskates, you have to understand how your weight and momentum can affect speed and direction. Sudden stopping and turning requires you to drag your wheels perpendicular to your direction, which is tricky to master. My penchant for loving the most dangerous/tedious/difficult things in life is surely what keeps me going to the practices.

I think I'm picking it up nicely. I'm able to stop pretty clean (usually), and my crossovers and sticky-skate are coming along nicely. I won't bother explaining what these are; (if you're really interested, look up roller derby on youtube. There are many well-made videos explaining the sport and outlining the physical skating skills necessary to join the league). I just mostly want to have a record on here about what I'm doing well and what I'm struggling with. That way, I can look back a month from now and be like "Aww! Crossovers and sticky-skate. Baby steps." or something like that.

Anyway, that's enough rambling on for today. It's damn hot in Ottawa; drink lots of water and don't forget the sunscreen!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

no internet access -> no updates.

Back online and on track soon! (hopes)

Monday, May 26, 2008

Updated website!

You're welcome!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

The show went really well... as well as one's first show could go, I suppose. I was almost immediately aware of things I'll do differently next time (ie- one extension cord wasn't enough to get my lamp where I wanted it, and lighting was a serious issue where my table was located). I sold 3 items, but pretty expensive items, and I saw many people take my card. I'm eager to see if/how the show changes the number of hits I get online.

Big, giant thank-you/shoutouts to everyone who came out, with honorable mentions of Lisa, Aron, Anna, Vanessa, Kim and Kevin. My sister Lisa and her boyfriend Aron have been an indespensible part of undeadclothingco from the very beginning; from it's inception as an idea, Lisa's encouragement and Aron's business-sense have put me where I am now, especially with regard to the website and graphics. Anna, Vanessa and Kim hung out with me at my table and kept me from going totally nuts (even though I came close a few times). Anna helped me decorate my doggy-bags, replete with bat-winged hearts and the words "thank-you!" or "merci!". Kevin snapped a bunch of shots of my display, which I'll have up here and/or on my website shortly. This brief list of things people did for me doesn't even cover the fact that their mere attendance meant a lot to me last night, as it did for everyone who bought their rather expensive tickets from me (including my parents, Kristina and Lizz). Hearts all 'round!

Now that the show is over and done with, I have to focus very seriously on my thesis. I received a rather ominous email from my supervisor the other day, which leads me to believe I have less time than I thought to complete a draft in time to defend this summer. Defending this summer is of such desperate importance... I can't even articulate.

As such, June will be the official thesis month with sparse smatterings of fun every here and there. I have roller derby tryouts, some birthday parties and some pretty serious Top of the World parties to attend. I also have a vacation to plan, which appears to bleed into July at this point... we'll see.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Show tomorrow!

I could stay up late and frantically make more stuff. I could go to bed now and get up early to go to the Glebe garage sale (I won't call it great- not yet). I think I'll take the middle path and watch a movie before hitting the hay. I'm allowed.
See you tomorrow

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

"womanhood" - mini-rant

We don't get cable at my house, but we do get a few channels off the antennae; most of which are french. As such, I'm often watching something I don't really want to watch. Today, for example, I sat down to my mac-and-cheese lunch (eaten out of the pot, of course) and watched that bitch* Martha Stewart cook something amazing in under twenty minutes.

After Martha Stewart, there was this new talk show called Steven and Chris. Steven and Chris are very obviously gay, and their show (which I've seen a couple of times before) centers on classic stereotypical gay/female topics such as interior decorating, hot new fashion trends (gag) and fitness.

Today, they were discussing the findings of a recent survey where women were asked what they would do to lose weight. Some reported that they would shave their head to lose 15 lbs, and others would go so far as to spend a week in jail. Still others would be willing to have a 6th toe or lose ten years off their life. These findings are repugnant, but it's not what this rant is about. This rant is about how Steven and Chris talked emphatically about these findings and discussed where they fit in with the findings as if they were women.

Straight women and gay men share two things: sexual attraction to men, and (only in some cases) identification with traditionally feminine gendered stereotypes. That being said, being sexually attracted to men and identifying with traditionally feminine stereotypes A WOMAN DOES NOT MAKE. I'm not trying to lynch these guys for their gender identification, or the fact that they are successfully hosting a show aimed at a predominantly straight female demographic. I'm more irked at how I'm seeing womanhood conceptualized lately.

Recently, someone close to me revealed that they were seriously considering getting breast implants. She had lost most of her breast size due to having children. When I expressed my concern as gently and un-judgmentally I could, she confessed that she didn't "feel like a woman" any longer... despite the fact that she has kids! To me, the ability to give birth is among the most fundamental aspects of womanhood! Not to say those who are unable/unwilling to procreate are not true women. I count myself among this group. The point is that if woman is defined in opposition to man (which is almost always is), that's the biological difference. That's it. I'd much rather see womanhood reduced to biological difference than sexual orientation toward men, or obsession with losing weight.

*- I love Martha. She's still a bitch.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Things are shaping up nicely for the Saturday show. Kevin shot photos of everything I've made over the past week and a half; those pics should be up on my website by the end of this week. He photographed me as well, which was an interesting experience; I discovered that I'd rather sit in front of a gun than a camera. I felt absolutely rediculous sitting there trying to look nice with my buddy hovering over me. Any effort to look "natural" only made me feel sillier! Fortunately, Kevin was able to snap a shot of me glancing down to see if my toe tag was still on, and it turned out to be a really nice shot. I'm quite fond of it.

Yesterday I was literally dumped upon with a metric fuckload of leatherwork tools, findings, and whatever-else have you. I walked by my office today and gaped at it for a while. I believe I'll have a creative cadiac arrest when I get over my intimidation and dive in.

My friend Ben commissioned me to knit something as a gift for his baby niece. The thing about hand-knitting stuff as gifts for non-knitters is that if it's a plain piece, they may not appreciate the labor that goes into the item. As such, I try to find really different patterns to use so that they at least appreciate the uniqueness of the item, if not the fact that it's handmade.

Behold! My ego captured and displayed in true airbrushed, pixelated form!



FYI- the toe tag reads

"Name: Living Dead Girl
Cause of Death: luck
Remarks: undeadclothingco; nurture your dark side"

Friday, May 16, 2008

Another good weekend, I hope

Because this past week, not so good.

I've been as productive as I could with my limited supplies. Tomorrow, Kevin is going to shoot the new products for the website.

One week till the show!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

A good weekend

It's funny; when you're sick in bed you become desperate to do all the things you didn't feel like doing when you were well.

I fell ill immediately after moving, so I was sick in bed with packed boxes surrounding me. When I felt a little better on Friday and actually got out of bed for awhile, I quickly became overwhelmed at how quickly May is flying by. I knew it'd be a busy month for me, but I hadn't accounted for two weeks in bed. The Basement Artists show is less than two weeks away, and I started to panic that I wouldn't be ready in time; that I couldn't even if I worked night and day.

However, in one day (yesterday) I managed to set up my office ("studio") and work on my thesis! All this, and I still had the time and energy to have dinner with a friend and go to a coworker's birthday party afterward. I was pretty impressed.

Today I slept in, and spent most of the afternoon at my parents house (mother's day, after all). When I got home, I got to work on the incomplete wallets I had started last December. Having been seperated from my sewing machine for four months, I was actually nervous to first turn it on. It's like hanging out with your childhood best friend after ten years... familiar yet somehow awkward. Once I got going though, both my hands and my heart immediately remembered what to do and why I was doing it.

I can't even describe how much I love to create. There's nothing like getting into a creative groove where every finished item is better than the last. As you feel your skills improving and refining, your aesthetic options widen and you can do more than you thought you had the skills to do. I worked for hours until I realized that I was incredibly thirsty and that my back hurt from hunching over my machine. I am no longer worried about having stock for the show.

Now, my only worry is what is known on etsy and craftster as "seller's anxiety"; is my stuff good enough to sell? Following this question is an equally stressful but more urgent one; how much to charge? The rule of thumb is to factor in the cost of your supplies and a decent hourly wage for yourself. Thing is, I spend HOURS on every piece. If a seam comes out even slightly crooked, I rip it out and do it over. Often times, I throw away something I've been working on for an hour or two because it has a tiny flaw that I can't accept. For reasons like these, I can't even afford to pay myself a measly $10 an hour; my products would be too expensive. But what can I do? I refuse to lower my standards of perfection. I guess I can only hope that I will eventually make less mistakes and pump through the more technical sewing parts faster and more efficiently.

I have a lot of work to do this week; I have an appointment with my photographer for this Saturday to shoot products for my portfolio and website. I hope to make exteriors for all the wallets tomorrow, and work on clothing Tuesday and Wednesday. Thursday... I have some ideas stewing. We'll see.

In other news; website updated with my snazzy new logo. Like it?

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Survive, I did

Barely.

The nasty flu I had been battling before my move made a comeback that has had me on my ass for the past 3 days. I went to the clinic today and was diagnosed with an upper respiratory infection... I suppose the "upper" has to do with the fact that a lot of the pain and pressure is in my head, not my chest. The doctor literally grabbed my skull and squeezed to see if that was it. Vulcan mind-meld style. It was really weird.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

to-do

(in order of urgency)

- mark exams and enter grades
- paint new room
- finalize moving plans
- pack what little has been unpacked
- work on website
- work on thesis
- remember to attend staff meeting
- move
- survive this weekend

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Blogging while sick is not recommended. I wrote two entries of whining that I promptly deleted. In my undergrad i took a course called Technology, World and Society and I remember the prof talking about how pampered our society is and how outraged we get at much minor inconveniences.

I hadn't gotten sick all winter and if I had to be laid up for a few days, last weekend was as good a time as any. I proctered a final exam all swimmy on cough syrup and I had to miss a shift at the store, but I'm well in time to work my shift tonight, paint my room tomorrow and hopefully move early next week.

I am so excited to go outside.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

I'm a little bit dumb

StationAry is not moving. StationEry is for writing. I searched "printable stationery" and found lovely stuff at the Canon printer website even though I use a Lexmark.

Thanks to a certain fourth dwarffor pointing this out so delicately that I didn't even get it at first.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

%@^#!

DISCLAIMER: I'm very sick and couldn't get rid of my shifts today and tomorrow; CRANKY.

Hear ye. "Stationary" is not the same as "note cards". One is lined paper for letter-writing. The other is folded cardboard. Where on earth can I find some frigging STATIONARY?!

(Before any Ottawans suggest that I try The Papery, Paper Papier, or any of the art stores on Bank St - I have. Not only have I tried there without success, but I got some of the worst service EVER. Walking into the Papery and Papier Paper alike, I felt like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman; as though this girl with headphones and a nosering or whatever has NO BUSINESS buying paper. Is my appearance really so offensive? Am I supposed to dress up nice to look fruitlessly for decent stationary? Why didn't they have decent stationary?!?)

Even Etsy.com let me down. Searches for stationary yields notecards. Note to some entrepreneur; there is a market for lined paper. Make it happen!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Sweet thrift finds!

1) a length of beautiful brocade fabric, perfect for my Basement Artists setup. Dark, rich and heavy. It's in two pieces, so I'll have to sew them together to make a square. The best part is; it's already fringed (my mom was going on about how fringe is so expensive . However, it should be noted that to my mom, $20 for a pair of cowboy boots is OUTRAGEOUS. Read on)!

2) a REALLY CUTE pair of cowboy boots, which I have been coveting for a long time (ever since I saw Death-Proof, I think). They fit perfectly and were only $20. The only problem; they were pink. PINK. Like an awful peachy-pink. My mom called them "flesh". GROSS. I know I'm not "with it" and all (see blog entry for April 9), but I think people shouldn't wear clothing/accessories that match their fucking skin. Period.

I'm obviously dying them black. I used an entire bottle of leather dye (they're suede, by the way) and I just managed to complete one full coat. They're looking a little bluish, so I think I'll get a second bottle and top them up. They're looking amazing... the decorative gold stitching was done in nylon thread, so it's still gold against the black. I'll post before and after pics when they're done.

Last but not least, 3) a really fun British craft book from 1973. I basically collect craft books. I especially like kitchy ones from the 60s and 70s. Some of the projects are so cute! Check out these jumper-things;



I think they're really fucking adorable. Would I wear one?... probably not. But still. The book calls them "playclothes" which is so Sound of Music. I may make one with exaggerated belt loops for scissors and pockets for pins and such and call it my sewing tunic.

I guess the book is my favorite find right now because it's the only one I can enjoy immediately. The boots will take a while. The fabric was a great find, though. I even brought around my lampshade in the hope of finding some cloth to somewhat match. All I need now is the perfect picture frame to display prices. And the card table, of course. And some stock...

Monday, April 14, 2008

not diggin' the not drinkin'

It's not like it's making me any less irritable. My intentions were good. It was an experiment and it's over. Booze doesn't make me mean. I'm just mean. As for the hangover-days... well, I'll try to keep them few and far between.

Excited to MOVE!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

This week a friend messaged me asking who I punched in the face, and someone else was curious who I argued with via text messaging.

I love my little teaser posts. They let me know who's listening.

xo
The key to winning a text-message argument is not having the last word. It's being the one to finally snap your phone shut and not open it again every thirty seconds to see the latest retort. It's being the one to decide that this argument is beneath you. It's resisting the urge to actually call the person, taking the argument to the next level where voices can be raised and words chosen more hastily.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

"One asshole is enough"...

...is what I should have told the customer today who tore me a new one.

The lady;
I had just started my shift when I saw a coworker frantically waving someone over. I should have seen the look in his eyes; the look that says 'rescue me from this crazy-ass custie'. I went over, and he explained that this broad was looking for "high-rise jeans" in a 34. "in a 34" means men's jeans, so you can imagine my initial bewilderment. I try to explain to the lady that my extensive knowledge of the various jeans in the store is based mostly on the leg fit; relaxed, bootleg, slim, skinny, etc. She explains to me what high-rise means ("on your WAIST", pointing at my belt) as though I cannot understand english.

So I tell her I'm not aware of any particularly "high-rise" men's pant, but that we'll grab a bunch of 34s and compare the inseams. She goes off about how in New York and LA "high-rise jeans" are all the rage and had I seen the new Tommy Hilfiger denim? I admitted that I had not. She throws up her hands in exasperation and informs me that I'm not "with it".*

So I see the owner/manager in the shoe room. I go up to her and ask if she's aware of any particularly "high-rise jeans" in the store; if anyone knew, it would be her. She replies with a somewhat incredulous "no?". At this point the lady appears out of nowhere and tells my manager that "this one" (me) is giving her "attitude." That she knows what's up and that I don't. That she (get this) doesn't need to "take any shit" from the likes of me. She made this last point with both arms in the air, pointing downward at me, like she's dissing me in some kind of freestyle battle in the street.

So I'm standing there, mouth agape, while my manager tries to stifle a grin. Customers in the shoe room are staring and giggling. As per standard procedure, the manager leads the lady out of the shoe room to a less-populous area to discuss the issue. I went to the back and hid behind the stereo.

Co-workers marvelled that I took this verbal assault with silence when they know me to be... more confrontational. I can sometimes be an ass but I KNOW when I'm being an ass. In this case, I was not. If anything, having just started my shift, I was in a good mood and was willing to help this dumb-ass woman find what she was looking for, even if she was demented. I can return a beating that I deserve, but this wasn't such a beating. Funny how that works.

*- I'm no stranger to being told that I'm not "with it", that I'm "stuck in the 90s". I dressed up normally for Rex Manning Day last week and my parents likened me to mid 80-s Cher. I don't care; I can take it. I'd rather wear what works for me and my body that wear whatever the terrible style "du jour" is. Docs have been "out" for ever, but I'm wearing mine until they wear out. I could really give a fuck.

In the end, I guess my smile came off condescending and my cheery tone patronizing. Lesson learned? - high rise jeans for fellas. Here they come. Camel-toe city, straight from NY and LA.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Makeover!

Both undeadclothing.ca and this blog got a much-needed reno today. I'm so pleased that they now match. Plus, the former banner of the girl eating a hunk of flesh is maybe not terribly appetizing to my enormous readership (haha). I actually had someone ask if it was me. It wasn't.

Undeadclothing.ca now has a functioning image gallery up, replete with thumbnails, closeups and product descriptions! I wish I had pics of my new stock, but my favorite photographer is notoriously hard to book on short notice. Furthermore, I have so much half-completed stock that I feel like I'm better off waiting a while and then having a big-ass photo shoot with pics up in time for the May 24 Basement Artists show.

I'm desperately excited to set up my own craft room and get to work; I have pent-up creativity from almost 4 months ago! The problem is that the current residents of my future home are uncertain about their moving plans, which in turn makes mine uncertain too. I'd like to have a concrete date to tell my parents and friends (to enlist their help moving me) and I'd like to paint.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

HAPPY REX MANNING DAY!

Also my last evening of drunken shenanigans. After last night, I can add punching my good friend and co-worker in the face (twice) to my list of booze-infused assholery.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

I just deleted a very grumpy post about the weather. I actually don't want this blog to become a repository for all my negative bitchings and ramblings of a given morning, although some people have blogs expressly for that purpose. The occasionaly rant is OK (I stand by my Maxim blast from last year) but from now on, I'm keeping this stuff nice and lively.

On a decidedly more positive note, I realized yesterday that I'm probably more than halfway done my loathed thesis. Big fat theory chapter complete, NOTLD chapter essentially done; one more chap on Day and Dawn and a conclusion. If I hold up to my 2-drink limit, I should be done in no time.

I work this afternoon, and I'm counting on a really busy Saturday afternoon. Nothing gets me pumped for spring like seeing people stock up on sandals, bikinis, shorts, etc. There's one 6-foot snowbank on my street that doesn't look like it's going anywhere though. I'm trying to think of a way to melt it... manually? Blowdryer?

Monday, March 31, 2008

I was going to do another schedule-organizing blog entry, and then I realized that this week looks a whole fuck of a lot like last week with some minor alterations; I work tonight, I don't have to pick up the assignments, and it's not Lidia's bday again. Saturday night is a Top staff meeting and Sunday is Rex Manning Day!!

(Who is Rex Manning?)



Lizz has this idea that something bad always happens to her on her birthday, and that she can avoid this by celebrating Rex Manning Day on April 8th instead.

Immediately following her party I'm planning on starting a self-imposed limit of 2 drinks per evening out. It's going to be difficult because I will actually feel like I'm wasting a bartender's valuable time pouring me a wuss-ass diet coke. This decision stems from a retrospective account of a couple of noteworthy incidents of poor drunken behavior; pushing people down stairs, text messaging their girlfriends, ripping off their sleeves. I have gotten away with 2 of these 3 transgressions, so I think I'm pushing my luck. I get this pang of dread when a co-worker says they'll join me for my Wednesday night tradition of going to the dom after work and they exclaim "I don't think I ever drank with you before!".

Maybe I'll make a t-shirt: "I'm no fun when my fourth drink's done"
"If you see me with beer, you're advised to stand clear"
"Gin and tonic makes me demonic"

Suggestions welcome.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

...and you ain't got no soul power...

Sunday, March 23, 2008

this is one of those annoying/boring blog entries where I write just to organize my thoughts

Monday: THESIS; pick up LAST batch of T.A. assignments; get library books; drop off chapter if it's finished?
Tuesday: THESIS; gym /w Nina; haircut maybe
Wednesday: discussion group; work; drink
Thursday: meeting with Andre (10am); Lidia bday; library book due; THESIS; knitting circle (I hope)
Friday: THESIS; THESIS; THESIS

Weekend?

To do throughout:
- get logo; send photos to Marcus; signage
- have an eye out for display items for the basement artists show; banner, tablecloth, picture frame, etc
- firm up moving plans; dates, booking truck, booking time off, etc
- compose resumes/distribute... ew.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Undeadclothingco will be at Basement Artists May 24th at Babylon!!

I've got a LOT of work to do...

I need more stock, obviously, as well as a folding table, tablecloth/display something... I have the perfect lamp. I'd like to paint my mannequin head, too. It's really quite exciting, I just hope I have time to get all set up in my new home in time to have brand spanking new stock to sell!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Miss Behavin'

SO busy. I suppose it can be expected that following a breakup I'll fill my spare time as much as possible. It's been working, I've been doing a lot of quality socializing with good people I haven't seen in ages, but it's taking it's toll on my thesis. My school motivation is at all all-time low, and the fact that April is approaching so rapidly is somehow feeding my procrastination. I really wanted to be done before I moved, but now I'm so distracted by my move... frig.

I'm also trying to get undeadclothing.ca looking a little less... ghetto. Marcus told me he might have room for me in a Basement Artists show in May, which would be very good for me. I'd need 2 things; a bunch of stock to sell, and a decent website to refer to. As of now, I have neither of those things. Well, I have some stock, but I haven't touched it in months for obvious reasons.

In other news... nope.

Friday, March 14, 2008

UH-OH!







Just needs a tongue

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

I'm having a surge of creativity; which is usually great but is kidna frustrating when you don't have a) the time to indulge, b) the tools you need should you decided to steal the time to indulge. Even if I did go get my stuff tomorrow, I wouldn't be able to set it up properly such that it can be used... add creativity to my list of things to do in May. A certain indoor scarf dominates my daydreams....

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Majority rules! I'll tinker with the color settings sometime when I have time (ie- not now; just got up for work at 8:30 but my body thinks it's 7:30). 2 over 1 isn't an overwhelming majority, but it was kinda bothering me as well. What use is a blog you don't want to look at hung over?

I work the store for the next 4 days in a row! I mind and I don't. I've been in such good spirits lately that I welcome the opportunity to interact with people, staff and customers alike. It's a very social store... I'm going to miss it a lot when I leave.

"When I leave". This this abstract future checkpoint I keep referring to in my head; some pivotal weekend in which I'll move and get another job. It's a pretty big life change, I think. I've always found moving to be upsetting, and I haven't had a 'new' job in about... 5 years? The annoying thing is I keep putting off fun until that abstract checkpoint. "At checkpoint 'x', I will resume undeadclothingco". "At checkpoint 'x', I will get my driver's license." "At checkpoint 'x', I will invest in an xbox 360." Interesting that most of these 'fun' resolutions have to do with being done school, and nothing to do with new job or apartment. That being said, that's probably where I should be focussing my efforts right now, and not socializing at the store. ...oops?

Walking through the little shortcut between my parents' house and Hunt Club road is essentially wading through crotch-high snow. If I had my leather here, I'd make sick snow gaiters; snowproof chaps.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Just got back from Toronto this morning! Strangely, my $130, 3-day tryst to the city was more refreshing and rejuvinating than my $1100+ vacation to Mexico. Again, this must be a state-of-mind affair.

I was damn busy in Toronto; I arrived in the late evening Sunday, exhausted, so we didn't do much of anything that night. On Monday, Sarah had homework to do and i still wasn't happy with the speech I was to present the following day. We worked for a while, then went shopping in the Kensington market.
(where I lost my horsefucking polarized Spy sunglasses. I didn't buy anything, but I managed to LOSE something. Ass-bangles, all around)

THEN, my favorite part of my trip. As soon as I had booked the specifics of my travel, I randomly facebooked everyone I know who lives in the GTA and told them I'd be at Sneaky Dees on Monday night... I expected maybe a few people to stop by. To my continuing delight, I was greeted by many familiar faces from completely different branches of my life; someone from elementary school, graduate school, Top of the World, MEXICO, random internet guy...! Super fun. The fact that nobody knows each other but everyone knows me necessarily puts me in the center of attention, where I'm happiest. I had a great night.

That pleasant evening was capped off by the worst night's sleep I've ever had. Sarah and Dave's cats decided my sleeping body was a fun jungle-gym for overnight acrobatics. Good thing the conference was swimming in coffee. Coffee and Foucault and biopower and boring. The mind does wierd things when sufficiently bored for a sustained amount of time... I'll elaborate on this point in person, upon request.

After the conference we went for Korean food with some more familiar Ottawa faces and played tetris until we passed out. I think I can say with certainty that I saw a good 80% of people I know in Toronto, which is pretty good for just 2 days plus conference! We had every intention of getting up super-early this morning to have breakfast out before I got on my 9:30 train, but the cats were good> so we slept well> so we didn't want to get up. I didn't have to sit next to anybody on the trainride home, so that was nice.

What did I do for the 5 hour ride?.... I know a certain pair of mittens that will be meeting happy hands pretty soon!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Let me start by saying the trip was great. It was. We got a good deal, the hotel was marvellous, the city was beautiful, the weather was perfect, the food was decent, etc etc etc.

We were planning this trip since last summer. The idea was a spring break getaway with the girls from my cohort in the MA program at Carleton; one last big hurrah before we all graduate and go our separate ways. As time went on, the nature of the trip changed. People backed out (as they are wont to do) until the two girls that remained interested in going were not in my cohort at all. Nonetheless, having gone through a devastating break-up and being stuck in life-limbo at my parents' house, I decided that I should still go for the purpose of escaping my misfortune and recharging my batteries.

Thing is, I'm not much of an escapist. I'm not the kind of person who can drown her sorrows. I also have a hard time putting things on the back-burner. Obviously, I do procrastinate; but not because I am able to effectively "forget" about things. As such, my entire trip was somewhat tainted by my knowledge that I would have to return and that upon returning, the same forces that sink my heart would be waiting for me in full swing.

So the long and short of it is: I went and had a great time, and now I'm back and miserable. Was it a waste of time and money? Probably not. I do have positive things to show for it; somewhat of a tan, some wonderful Mexican art, a new ring and bracelet I love, etc. Unfortunately neither of these things enrich my life significantly enough to brighten my short-term future.

For example, I bought an amazing Dia de los Muertos clay sculpture in Puerto Vallarta. I was exactly what I was hoping to find there, and when I held it up and I thought of how perfect it would look on my nightstand, next to my beaded-tapestry lamp, against a plum-colored wall in my very own place. The ugly underbelly of this reverie is that I don't yet have my very own plum-colored place, and will likely not have one for quite a while; the beaded tapestry lamp is marooned until I find a place, along with my precious sewing machine, my yarn, my favorite Thor mug and 80% of my wardrobe. I imagine some people could appreciate the clay sculpture without the emotional baggage, but I can't.

I'm reading a Chuck Palaniuk novel about a group of writers who willingly volounteer to isolate themselves for three months for the ideal environment to write their magnum opus; no phones, no internet, no friends, no family, no job, no interruptions of any kind. The idea, it is presumed, is that the isolation encourages introspection. Rather than make contructive use of the situation, the characters begin to envision themselves as victims of a horrible ordeal, one which would surely get the attention of the world when they finally escaped, making them rich and famous. In order to further sensationalize their story, they willingly maim themselves. It's quite twisted and hilarious, actually. My point is that this idea of isolation is starting to appeal to me. I think I'm starting to understand why people feel the need to suddenly pick up and relocate across the globe. I'm not feeling this need to that extent, but I am finally starting to understand it.

They say the orchid is a common tattoo, partly because of it's beauty and partly because of the fact that it is a beautiful flower that apparently only grows in shit. It is this symbolism that makes it a popular tattoo; people get tattooed when they need a rebirth of sorts; recovering from divorce, depression, loss of a loved one, etc.

My sister says I remind her of Kat Von D.
Are you thinking what I'm thinking?

Saturday, February 23, 2008

I'm home

and exhausted and tremendously low on sleep. I will describe my journey when I can recollect it objectively without the memory being tainted by my less-than-great homecoming.

PS- "grossy" in the post below is a typo... of what, I'm not sure. "Gassy"? or maybe just "gross"?

Friday, February 15, 2008

Puerto Vallarta

I'm leaving today. Takeoff is in 6 hours... I'm too grossy to get excited yet. That, and I really hate customs... but I am happy that at 10pm tonight I could be swimming in the ocean!

Have a great week, everyone! I'm sure I'll have lots to report when I get back

Monday, February 11, 2008

I have literally been sitting at my desk all day long. I got home from Liz's at about 11:30, came up to work on my thesis... took a lot of breaks... watched 2 movies online... and here I am at 11:03pm.

Today I watched the Blair Witch Project in 7 parts on youtube. I had a nightmare the other night that ended with my former roommate staring vacantly in a corner while I screamed at her, and I woke up thinking about that movie. I remember seeing it in the theatre after all the hype had died down (ie- people didn't think it was 'real' anymore). The movie didn't scare me at the time, nor did it entertain me really, but I was definately too young. The power of that movie is to empathize with their growing panic and desperation. I'm not much of an outdoorsy person, so just the fact that they camped so much was enough to make my skin crawl.

The second, and far more substantial movie was called Zeitgeist and came to my attention by recommendation. I watched it in 3 parts on google video something-something. It's one of those movies that ignites the mind but saddens the heart... you finish watching it with a sense of enlightenment and of thinking in a different way, but you're pretty sure the knowledge has come with a price; that being your optimism/faith in humanity/will to live. It was such a pithy film that I actually took notes such that I can discuss it in detail with the fellow to recommended it to me. I look forward to that.

Third on my list yet most important in my life is that I finished revising the heavy theory chapter and it's all printed out and waiting in my backpack to be delivered to the lion's mouth tomorrow. My supervisor can have it all week to look over while I drink mojitos on the beach. And if he doesn't like it, he can shove it up his ass (while I rewrite it).

At one point today, I went downstairs for a snack and actually verbally told my cat I'd snuggle with her later and watch TV. I did not. Think she'll forgive me for some tuna?

Saturday, February 9, 2008

What a perfect time for a slumber party

There's drama in my life and I have a big zit.

I appear to have lost my yarn needle! I've lost it a handful of times, and I usually find it by sitting on it or some other painful way... now I'm scared of my couch.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Living dead girl is a busy bee this week!

Sat; work 12 - 5, host slumber party!
Sun; endure hangover, 80s night @ Barrymore's
Mon; thesis writing extravaganza!
Tues; correct T.A. assignments, close store
Wed; discussion group, close store
Thurs; pack bags, close store
Fri; get on plane, commence vacation!

Add in an appointment to be depilated somewhere... oh god, where? Also, clean house before parents return! Make sure library books are not due while I'm gone! Get someone to come in and feed Felicity for 3 days!

I guess it's good to have a busy week right before my vacation. I'll enjoy it more.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

long hard road out of hell

The trip:
We booked it. Puerto Villarta for 7 days, departing Feb 15th. We even found an all-inclusive, 4-star resort that accomodated 3 people in 2 double beds and a sofa bed. We called the agent, gave our credit card info and slept well that night... until today, that is. I get off work and there's voicemail from Kim saying to call her and that it's "important". Fuck.
Apparently our payment transactions are "pending", for whatever reason. Both of ours; Kim's and mine. What the fuck for, I get to discover tomorrow, probably after being 'on hold' with Mastercard for 45 mins.

The thesis:
It's ok. I was pleased at having "finished" that chapter, and I sent it off to some colleagues for proofreading. The feedback was excellent; probably better than my own pigheaded supervisor could provide. But they weren't little change-a-word-here suggestions. They were go-back-to-the-library suggestions. So I did. I'm not complaining, either. Like I said, this is better help than I would expect from my supervisor, so I may as well do it and hand it in to him later. I hope to have it at him by reading week, at least.

Life:
See above.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

My excitement for my trip has waned considerably. We went from 8 people to 3. Try booking hotel rooms for 3 people. Two adult girls in a twin bed is NOT my idea of a vacation! As such, we're trying to either find a fourth or find a package cheap enough to cover the cost of a nonexistent fourth person. This trip was supposed to be a de-stressor and I'm stressed out about it!!

On the plus side, I finished a crappy draft of a difficult-ish chapter and sent it off to some colleagues to proofread. This means I can enjoy some of my weekend, knowing that I actually accomplished a drop in the thesis bucket this week.

Also making great progress on Jen's sandworm mittens. I confessed to her last week that it'll be hard to give them up!

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Overwhelmed and understated

February's just around the corner and I'm really starting to get excited for my trip!

Lizz: I just hope we have good weather. If we have one rainy day, I'll be really bummed out.

me: That can be our yucky hangover day.

Lizz: I don't plan to be sober enough to have a hangover.

The funny thing is she really means it.

My arms really hurt from playing Nintendo Wii

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

I guess it's only fair that after a very productive and reassuring week, I have a week like this one. So much to do, so little time!

This afternoon is my second discussion group, and I'm expecting a larger turnout because the midterm is coming up. I'm kinda unprepared... my prof sent me her lecture notes, but my dad has the worst printer EVER so I can't print them (it requires you to feed it pages of pager, one at a time, or it jams. You can't just leave a stack for it to feed. That, and it is incredibly slow)

I also have a stack of T.A. assignments to correct (remember those?) plus the ever-present thesis.

Monday, January 28, 2008

I really like Bladerunner.

It's funny; it's supposed to be set in like, 2019 which is not too distant in the future, but there are flying cars and the architecture is totally different yet still looks old somehow, etc. Funny. Funnier still that Pris is seen wearing leg warmers which have been in and out of style twice since the movie came out.

Today I work the store until 4 and then I have a brief T.A. meeting for marking. I did a lot of good work on that chapter yesterday. I think that if I give it a good polishing tonight/tomorrow morning, I can fire it off to a couple of colleagues to proofread right away. I had hoped to get it to my supervisor by the end of the month and now that's starting to look possible.

I finally made guage for the sandworm mittens last night; I needed to go down TWO needle sizes!! I have to say, I really do hate swatching. Part of my love for knitting involves patience, and I really do have a lot of patience. But I don't like wasting my time, and spending as little as half an hour working up a teeny rectangle to measure and then promptly rip out and do again with another needle size is wasting my time.

I guess the fact that I found guage at 2 sizes smaller is a testament to the importance of swatching. For those of who you don't knit or just don't know what I'm talking about, you have to use trial and error to make sure your stitches are coming out the same size as the pattern designer's stitches. If they don't, the dimensions of your final product will be skewed (a way bigger waste of time).

I'd like to have these mittens done by the end of January too. Last night when I was freezing coming home I thought of Jen's fingers!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Goddamn you, thesis. I hate you so much.

In other news,

nothing.

No wait, that's not true. I'm going to see the latest director's cut of Bladerunner in an actual movie theatre tomorrow night! Well it's the Bytowne, but it's mostly a real-life theatre. I think it's actually better than a modern-day cinema... but I might be confusing the interior with the Mayfair. I sure do love the Mayfair.

Then off to Collective Seen, maybe, or to Barrymore's for some 80s action.

Speaking of Collective Seen, I've been making various social connections of behalf of undeadclothingco lately. Earlier this month I met a potential leather tool/findings contributor who has offered me all this stuff that I desperately need. Then yesterday I met a dude who puts on these events showcasing local artisans. Collective Seen is another such event, and it's run by a friend of mine. It sucks to have these connections made and to not be able to really make use of them because of your stinking thesis and your stupid annoying life situation etc etc. I just hope these guys remember my name in the spring.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

sandworm mittens

So when my friend Jen lost her cute shark-mittens, she commissioned me (or undeadclothingco) to make her a pair of sandworm mittens! I was almost kicking myself that I hadn't thought of it first! Yesterday we went to a movie and she supplied me with a diagram of the color scheme, which is kickass amazing awesome.

There have been only a handful of occasions in which I've custom made something for someone to their tastes. I made a wallet for my friend Andre. He gave me "ideas" and "themes", but left a lot up to me. While I find it really cool that he had that much faith in me, my "seller's anxiety" was through the roof! I worried that a) he wouldn't like it, b) he wouldn't want to say so because we're friends, and c)that I'm overcharging him, even though it was pretty tricky to paint.

I don't have this anxiety with Jen because her specs are pretty straightforward (I wish I could scan in the diagram she drew, it's hilarious) and at this point in the winter, I'm sure she wants warm hands!

If they turn out (and why wouldn't they) I think they'd make a good undeadclothingco original product. There was a it of a boom in animal mittens over the past 2 or 3 years (coinciding slightly with a knitting boom... interesting) but I've only ever seen the pretty straightforward animals. Bears, alligators, snakes, etc. Jen's sharks were pretty original, but not like sandworms! Hmmm, I could sell 'em in a set with matching socks...

Monday, January 21, 2008

back to the grind

Having taken the week off to celebrate my birthday and the weekend off to hang out with my parents before they leave for Thailand, my mini-vacation is over and I have to get back to work.

I'd like to email around a draft of a chapter on cultural materialism by the end of this week, and hopefully get it to my supervisor the week after.
I'm not looking forward to tangling with him again... a couple of colleagues of mine have speculated that maybe he was having an off day or something. If he's pulling a 'tough love' thing, I'm going to have to remind him that he's not my parent. All I know is I'm not letting him speak to me like that again. He had the element of surprise to his advantage, and the fact that I was emotionally fragile at the time. If he gets out of line again, I'm going to have my say and find a new supervisor if I have to.

Discussion groups start for me Wednesday which should be interesting. These discussion groups are not mandatory; they're just an opportunity for students to discuss what the class is covering with one another in a forum-like setting. I used to love shit like that when I was an undergrad, but not when I was in first-year. I have no idea what the turnout demographics will be.

I do have some fun times lined up for this week. Sweeney Todd with Jen tomorrow, shopping with Lizz on Thursday and a costume party on Friday night! The theme is "The age of aquarius" wherein you're free to dress up as anything you can relate to aquarius; ie- a Greek astronomer, a fish/marine animal, or a hippie. Due to lack of time and resources, I'll probably wear the same hippie costume I wore for the Volcom bowling party last summer. Skin-tight jeans with huge flared bottoms and a brown poncho.

Huh. Guess this week won't be so bad after all?