Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Lesson #3: Never leave your mates

After having been on the road for three weeks - ten days in Ireland and ten in Portugal - I was ready to head home to Glasgow, meet up with my mates, have a nice pint (or nine), and relax for a few days before starting to study for my finals. First though, I had to spend one more day in Porto. Having been there for three already, I decided to take things easy - have a nice walk in the morning and then spend the afternoon at the beach. Yeah. That would be nice. Here is what actually happened.


Wake up. Grab free bowl of cereal and an apple from the hostel, then go off with Kelly to find the post. She wanted to mail something before she had to catch a flight with Hadassah back to Glasgow. My flight was early tomorrow morning and Meghan was going a few hours after that - but to London, not Glasgow. I  got to try speaking some Portuguese while looking for the post building. "Onde es el correo?". They look confused but understood what I meant after a few seconds. Maybe 'correo' doesn't translate well from Spanish to Portuguese. Maybe my accent was shite. Probably both


Walk Hadassah and Kelly down to the Metro station and said goodbye. Seemed a bit of a pointless goodbye as I was going to see the both of them tomorrow in Glasgow but goodbyes are always nice. Went back to the hostel, ate some yoghurt and showered.


Meghan is awake and studying downstairs. Time to start my languorous wander about the city.


Text from Hadassah. Turns out that karma didn't like how I had been laughing about my friends who were stuck in Iceland due to volcanic eruption. Kelly and Hadassah's flight was cancelled. Mine might be too. Run back to hostel to tell Meghan. Looks like I'm trading in that day of relaxation for a day at the airport. Fun!


Had a nice 15 minute nap while waiting for Meghan to get all her stuff packed


Left hostel and went to the Metro


Show up at the airport. Hadassah and Kelly are already in the queue to change flights. First I decided to check the internet and then I joined the queue


Finally reached the end of the queue. My flight is still good to go tomorrow morning. Hadassah and Kelly had to change their flight but now they're on the same on to London as Meg. Then they'll just grab another plane to Glasgow. Everything is sorted nicely and best of all, Meg's got Hadassah and Kelly with her in case something goes screwy. They'll be fine. Now I can get some of that relaxing done I'd planned on. But first, tastytimes were in order. The four of us walked down to a cafe. I ate some of that delicious chorizo bread I'd been munching on all throughout Portugal and also two corn/meat triangle things, two fish things and a can of coke.


Went to a tiny supermarket near the cafe to get provisions for spending the night at the airport. I grabbed 1.5L of water, canned pineapple, canned beans and a 1.95 bottle of wine.


Back at the airport and getting some of that relaxing done by laying out in a nice sunny patch of grass. Life is good. Also decided to start in on that pineapple. God I love pineapple. And life. Did I mention that it's good?


Kelly's parents are going to be in Glasgow tomorrow so we got the brilliant idea to swap my flight for Kelly's so that she'd be home quicker and could meet them. Instead, I learn that I am fucked. My flight tomorrow morning is cancelled. Kelly, Hadassah, and Meghan's is still on though.


Finally got through that queue - again. Changed my flight to go to Faro at 7:35am and then from Faro to Dublin at 12:45pm. From Dublin I'd need to figure out how to ferry back to Scotland. It was the best available option I had. Thankfully the others are still okay, and still with each other. Now, time to deal with some stress. Where is that wine?


Realize with Hadassah that we had no corkscrew and can't get into our wine. Luckily, we have metal spoons and I can maybe bash the cork into the bottle


Make new best friend in Elliot, an American who looks and sounds exactly like Seth Rogen and, most importantly, offered his corkscrew to us


Open wine and start to drink with Hadassah. Also, ate a muffin thing.


Wine gone, need more. Sent Meghan to go get the money she owed me before I got drunk and forgot about it and flew away.


Meghan still isn't back. Time to go investigate that supermarket with Hadassah for more wine


The supermarket was closed but we found a semi-fancy looking restaurant that had no problem in selling two bottles of wine to myself and Hadassah. On the way out, we see Meghan and Elliot. They too, are looking for wine.


Open wine on park bench and start drinking before Elliot and Meg come back out from the restaurant


Finish the first bottle of wine before we even get back to the airport. I am respectably drunk now and life is pretty good. Time to eat another muffin thing.


I decide to switch to water for a while and Hadassah decides to pass out. Fair enough, it's been a long rough day.


I found Kelly on the Internet. Decided that now would be a good time to print out my boarding pass for my flight in ten and a half hours. Kelly had made a new friend in Denmark girl.


Elliot is gone now, back to some hostel somewhere in Porto. It's a shame really, I like that guy. Denmark girl has sortof taken his place though. She doesn't look or sound like Seth Rogen but she's pretty and good to talk to so it's a fair trade all in all. Decided to go down to internet some things for a half hour. First though, phoned Steph and also left a message for my parents. My phone died and ran out of credit at the exact same time. I don't think the world wants me to communicate.


Open up the last bottle of wine (out of three) with Denmark. She has one glass and I drink about half the bottle. Life is still good.


Hadassah is awake now but still sleepy and cold. I give her my Glasgow hoodie and winter jacket for pillows and warmth. I was the only one out of the group with real 'warm' clothing because I had been in Ireland for ten days before. Everyone else was packed for warm weather and I was packed for gross and rain and cold. It even snowed on me in Ireland. In March. How fucked up is that too. Proper good windy snowstorm too.


Went and found Kelly again. She was cold too so I gave her my hemp hoodie. Had a nice chat a bit before she decided to go to sleep


Chatted with Denmark girl some more. Had some wine some more. Still liked life some more.


Meghan was sleepy now. Gave her my colourful Lisbon hippie hoodie and a towel.


Hungry. Ate the full can of beans and the last two slices of pineapple


Everyone is asleep now. Even Denmark girl. I might as well give it a shot seeing as how I've got nothing better to do with my time


Awake again thanks to sharp pain in my collar bone. Note to self: next time you try sleeping, don't put most of your weight on one of your more delicate bones. You would think I would know how to sleep proper by now but no, this is apparently not the case. Everyone else is still spread out throughout the airport sleeping, except for Meghan, who I cannot find.


Meghan comes back with a chamomile tea, puts it on the ground near where I am sitting and pushes it wordlessly towards me. I am drunk and tired and confused. I look at her. She pushes the tea in my direction some more. I look at it and then at her again. She smiles, I grab the tea without lifting it off the ground and look again. Still smiling and not talking. Finally I think I understand and pick it up. "Thank you". Another smile. It is the nicest thing anyone's done for me


Wait in the now very short line and ask about my flight in two and a half hours. It is still apparently okay. The one from Faro to Dublin is also still apparently okay. I hope so. I don't want to leave the others in case something screws up but they'll have each other if that happens. They'll be fine and I already know I can deal with whatever happens to me on my own. Everything will work out.


One more glass of wine for the road


Goggled Meghan and Hadassah on my way to security. Then they got me right in front of the security guard. Assholes. He understood it was a game though, and was amused by me having to lay down on the ground.


My flight leaves to Faro and I am unconscious for the full hour. Thank you wine and lack of sleep.


Get to Faro and realize my mistake immediately. Right inside the airport is a board with cancellations. My Dublin flight is cancelled. Meg, Kelly and Hadassah's flight is cancelled too. Fuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuck, I should not have left them. 

Had a hell of time trying to find the ticket booth. Needed to ask the security guard for directions three times before he just walked me there. To be fair, the airport had a stupid layout but I should have been able to figure it out on my own. This made me realized just how weary only having two hours of sleep and to be still processing the roughly two bottles of wine I drank has made me. Not to mention all the stress.

Eventually find the queue for the ticket desk. It is enormous. Three or four times the size of the one in Porto. Got in line behind an English couple who have a farm north of Faro. An English family soon joins the queue behind me


Still in the queue. Still looks to be about another hour before I get to the desk. Time to start thinking about options. There is still time for me to bus back to Porto. Or I could stick this queue out and bunker down in Faro. I really don't like Faro. Plus, I know that Kelly, Meghan, and Hadassah are probably a mess right now. I prayed that Hadassah could keep it together for the group. I don't pray ever but Hadassah does. Maybe it will help her in a way. I should be there anyways.

 The Farm couple are going to go back to work on their farm until they can fly home. The English family are trying to get back from vacation. They are really nice and I've been having a good chat with them on and off for a few hours. Also, they have a seventeen year old daughter who has been making eyes at me and even said that she wished she had an accent. Fucking funny how she would be the first one in all the time I've spent in Britain to be (noticeably) turned on by my accent.

I could offer to help the Farm couple work on their farm if they let me stay there. Or I could play 'down and out' with the English family and see if they offer to let me stay at their hotel. Their daughter would push for it, I was pretty sure, so it might work. That could turn interesting quickly in who knows how many ways.

Ultimately though, I decide that I need to go back to Porto. Before catching a bus from the airport to Faro, I go to the Vodafone store to charge my phone and get credit for it. The English family looks over my stuff while I'm out of the queue. Spend 4.25 on a terrible ham and cheese sandwich then ring Hadassah to tell her I'm coming back. She sounds relieved. I should never have left.


Catch bus to Porto. Well, to Lisbon really, then I've got to get on a different one to Porto. Slept for two hours. It is beautiful.


Back in Lisbon. Such a beautiful city. Part of me is sad I can't stay here for a day. Well, I probably could but I'm needed elsewhere. Goodbye again, Lisbon.


Stuck in traffic. Because I haven't done enough queuing today. On the other hand though, the sunset is pretty. You know what fuck sunsets. FUCKCOCKASSEATINGFUCKSHITCUNTWHORE.


Back in Porto. Deja Vu. Text Hadassah and she tells me to meet at the Metro. She's found a new hostel for everyone to stay at. Kelly got a hotel because she needs to de-stress and just have some nice relaxing her time. I don't blame her. Met up with Hadassah. Hug.

"I'm so glad you came back"
"Me too. I shouldn't have left"

She told me all about their day. It sounded awful. I should have been there. Though, I was proud of her. It sounded like, for the most part, she held it together for everyone and kept them from going insane - she did my job. I shouldn't have left but she did good and didn't break down until I came back. This was her first chance to break down, really. Strong girl. 

"I shouldn't have left".

Dear Stranger,

There's this poster at the uni cafeteria that says "Your only souvenir will be calluses" or something like that. I don't even know what it's for because every time I see it (roughly once a day) I read it as "Your only souvenir will be calculus" and start wondering what the hell they could possibly be trying to sell before realizing that I'm an idiot who can't read.

I've been wanting to tell that story for a while now but it's really not a good story and honestly no one would care about it so I told you because I never have to see you again if I don't want to.

There was a girl behind me in the queue at the caf who was singing,

" I can see a lot of life in you
  I can see a lot of bright in you".

It figured she'd be singing that. I told her that I liked Sufjan Stevens and she looked at me funny. Not the reaction I was expecting. Maybe I was just hallucinating her singing it. It would make more sense for me to be hallucinating it than for her to be actually singing it. I mean that particular song, seriously? Though, the universe does seem to like to fuck with me - like the girl behind me at the bar from Scotland, Ontario. What a stupid fucking name for a city.

I don't think I would have hallucinated it though because I've actually been getting a reasonable amount of sleep lately (thanks to skipping an unreasonable amount of lectures). So she must have been singing it herself. Strange look though. Weird.

I bet if I told you what I study, you'd tell me you hate it. Most people tell me they hate maths. That pisses me off so much. I hate having to tell people what I study because I never know how to react when they tell me they hate it.

"So what do you study?"
*mumbles* "umm, maths"
"Ugh, I hate math. I pretty much failed it in high school".
"Uh, it's not for everyone. I like it though so..."
"Oh thats good for you but I can't stand it"

What's the worst is that most people haven't even earned the right to hate maths. I don't believe you can properly hate something until, at the very least, you know a little bit about it. At the best, most people can only claim to not understand any math. That I'm okay with, but hate? No. You're not allowed because you don't fucking know anything. For example, here are some different fields in maths I can think of off the top of my head:

Math biology, math ecology, linear programing, non-linear programming, cryptography, cryptoanalysis, real analysis, complex analysis, algebraic topology, differential topology, group theory, Galois theory, chaos theory, fractal geometry, euclidean geometry, non-euclidean geometry, number theory, linear algebra, vector calculus, combinatorics, set theory, optimization, game theory, numerical analysis, mathematical finance, and so on and so on.

You probably can't tell me what happens in a single one of those (very very broad) fields and yet, in a single sweeping statement you claim that you hate them all. You don't have that right. I can claim that I hate analysis because I actually fucking know what it is.

So dear stranger, the moral of the story is that if someone tells you they study something that you know nothing about, don't fucking tell them you hate it. It's fucking rude and it's inaccurate.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Dear Dreams,

Dear god you are a scatterbrained bunch aren't you dreams? I think maybe, you ought to pick one thing and focus on that. In the course of a few hours you might look up how to get a job in Antarctica, how to apply for a masters degree in the UK, and even as I write this you're looking at different jobs you can apply for at Last.fm. Make up your fucking mind. Seriously.

I suppose, in general, you do tend to lean towards either writing or travelling - which isn't bad. Those two things do tend to go together pretty well. The problem with that though is that to travel write you need to go places and when I go places I'd rather spend all my time enjoying them rather than write about them. This causes issues you see.

I read something today which went along the lines of "Where do you think this could take you if you kept at it for five years", it was nice and inspirational. Five years is a nice amount of time - I'd still be young but I could actually have accomplished a lot - if I start trying right now. That's a big issue for me: trying. Even writing this just right now is an excuse of getting out of trying. I've got a half written story laying on the floor beside me and instead of writing that, I'm doing this. Go me!

Alternately: Dear Dreams,

Do you remember that one dream I had where I was hanging out with Cody in the Death Star only it was actually a corporate office and we were chilling in Darth Vader's office? That was a cool dream. Could I have it again please?

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Dear Brother

Have you got any ideas for a good show to pitch to CBC radio? I think we ought to have a sit down and a good think about it and go over the submision rules or whatever. Cause seriously, Uni is sortof a background thing for both of us. I know I'd rather not get a proper job - pretty sure you would to. Radio could be fun. Or whatever too. That could be fun probably.

We should stop being so lazy and maybe once a week (or every other week? I know you're almost as busy as I am) and make something. Doesn't matter what. Stories, sketches, songs, whatever. That could be fun I think


PS - You should get a job and come to Glasgow with me this summer?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Dear Parents,

University is nice. Please send money


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Dear Crush

This is an exceptionally difficult letter for me to write because, frankly, you don't exist. However, being non-existent as you are, I trust that you won't get angry if the quality of this letter is not quite up to your expectations. As well, I apologize for not knowing your name. Though, to be fair, it really is your fault for not introducing yourself - that's just basic etiquette, you bitch.

Well you know what? You are a bitch sometimes. There I said it and and I don't even care that's how fed up I am with you. Remember that time I went to meet you at the mall and you didn't even bother ringing me to say you wouldn't be there? That shit happens all the time and I'm sick of it. I do so much for you and you can't even be fucked to tell me your name? Oh, bullshit. Just yesterday I cleaned the flat, not that it mattered cause you didn't fucking come over. Again.

I'm trying to work on my swearing okay!? I'm just a little emotional right now so occasionally a swear is going to slip out, ALRIGHT. If you can't have the maturity to look past that and focus at the issues at hand here, well then you can go fuck a cunt. Yes. You heard exactly what I said. FUCK A CUNT.

Fuck it. I'm through with this shit.


Sunday, November 7, 2010

Dear Best Friend

It is kindave interesting the relationship we have. For one, we haven't actually lived in the same place for over three years. That's probably not going to change anytime ever either. Lately we've been fighting more than usual. I mean, we've always fought, it's why we've been such good friends. There's no one else I could take a swing at and have everything be cool ten minutes later. I think we've both been strained though, had other things to fill our heads with. You've got a girlfriend now which is actually really cool and it's great to see you as happy as you are. I can't really blame you for focussing so much more importance on that than other things. Given the chance, I'd jump right back across the ocean without even thinking about it and stay for years possibly. The only difference is that your love is a girl - mine is a place.  So please, enjoy it as much as you possibly can.

Anyways, you know that ultimately I'll always be around and I know that ultimately you'll always be around which is a pretty big source of comfort. Have a good one.

Love Me

30 Days of Letters

I saw this somewhere and decided that it might be fun to try. At the very least, it would get me writing more which is something I really need to work on. I don't know if I'll have time to do one every day, but I'll do my best.

Day 1 — Your Best Friend
Day 2 — Your Crush
Day 3 — Your parents
Day 4 — Your sibling (or closest relative)
Day 5 — Your dreams
Day 6 — A stranger
Day 7 — Your Ex-boyfriend/girlfriend/love/crush
Day 8 — Your favorite internet friend
Day 9 — Someone you wish you could meet
Day 10 — Someone you don’t talk to as much as you’d like to
Day 11 — A Deceased person you wish you could talk to
Day 12 — The person you hate most/caused you a lot of pain
Day 13 — Someone you wish could forgive you
Day 14 — Someone you’ve drifted away from
Day 15 — The person you miss the most
Day 16 — Someone that’s not in your state/country
Day 17 — Someone from your childhood
Day 18 — The person that you wish you could be
Day 19 — Someone that pesters your mind—good or bad
Day 20 — The one that broke your heart the hardest
Day 21 — Someone you judged by their first impression
Day 22 — Someone you want to give a second chance to
Day 23 — The last person you kissed
Day 24 — The person that gave you your favorite memory
Day 25 — The person you know that is going through the worst of times
Day 26 — The last person you made a pinky promise to
Day 27 — The friendliest person you knew for only one day
Day 28 — Someone that changed your life
Day 29 — The person that you want tell everything to, but too afraid to
Day 30 — Your reflection in the mirror

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

An open forum for all foreign countries.

Oh, hi guys, I'm super glad you could all come here today. Israel... c-could you please stop kicking Palestine under the table. No, I-I can see you. You just di... you're still doing it. Okay, whoever thought it would be funny to have these two sit together, I will find you. Oh, it was me you say? Well, it is kindave funny.

What he doesn't know is that
Palestine put itching powder under that hat
Anyways, more to the point. There's something important I'd like to ask of you. Can I have a passport? America, put back the forklift. I don't want to do any paperwork. Or pay any money. And no Guatemala, I don't want a fake one. I would like a proper one with my own face and name.

This will get you into most South American countries

Canada, get back here, I've already got one of your passports. No, that's fine, you don't need to apologize. Though, if it isn't too much trouble, could you maybe look into joining the EU. Their money has ridiculous colours like ours so it'll hardly be any difference. Or could you maybe even give up sovereignty and go back to being owned by Britain? That would be just as good - even easier too, seeing as how the queen is still our head of state.

I guess what I'm trying to say here is, I want to hang out with you all, I really do. Yes, even you Burkina Faso. Of course I remember your name, just because no one else does doesn't mean you're not important. But really, you are making it really difficult. I'm doing my best here but, honestly, the vibes I'm getting is that you'd really prefer for me not to come over. And I don't think anyone wants that. So, please mail me passports. Passports that are 100% real and have my very own name and picture. Thank you.

Friday, September 24, 2010

I am sick and tired of this stupid goddamned fucking shit country

Or perhaps I should say "cuntry". No? Though I am a fan of silly puns, something about the word cunt doesn't allow it to mix well as a pun (usually). Oh well. Anyways, to the point.

Things I like about Canada

1. Peanut Butter
2. How people in cars actually slow down and don't try to run you over

Things I dislike about Canada

1. The current weather. If I wanted to be somewhere where it was overcast, gloomy, and drizzled rain, I wouldn't have fucking goddamned left Glasgow

2. Homework. Assigning homework for marks is the worst idea ever. You shouldn't be evaluated on how much you know something WHILE you are trying to learn it. You should be evaluated after you're already supposed to know it. Homework-for-marks is akin to going to a bands practice session and telling them they suck cause they didn't play everything right. The system we have here essentially punishes you for trying to learn something.

3. How the airport is right beside my Uni. I want every plane that flies overhead to crash because fuck people going places without me. Also: how about the only thing keeping me from getting on one of those planes is because I leave my passport in my flat before going to the Uni.

4. Whenever people say "It must be good/nice to be back". No. No it fucking isn't and there never was a point in time when it was. Actually, there was one point where it was nice to be back in Canada. I was in California at the time though so fuck this country. I'm so sick of lying to you because you'd get offended if I told you that this country was shit. Well it is. Canada is shit. You're only lying to yourself when you think otherwise. Fun Fact: Every country on the face of the earth is shit, some are just less shit than others. And I'm sick of how Canadians think Canada is so much fucking better than American. It's not. It's marginally better, at best. At least there's Americans who aren't afraid to admit that their country is shit. In Canada it's a mortal fucking sin. Sure, you can call your hometown shit and you can call your province shit but you'd best not call the country shit. Well it is. Canada is shit. Get over it.

And cut out this artificial nationalism bullshit. Fuck I goddamned hate maple leafs hanging out of so many fucking goddamned windows in this fucking goddamned country. I saw nowhere near as many flags of St. Andrew's Cross in Scotland. And that's a flag that actually represents and means something; a centuries old struggle with the English to retain Scottish independence and culture - and they fucking won cause Scotland is hard as fuck. What the fuck does a maple leaf mean? We make syrup here, I-I guess?

5. How the fucking university won't let me take as many goddamned courses as I fucking want. Fuck those guys.

6. The chip shop next to my flat. How the fuck has that place won "Best French Fries in Kelowna" for the last six fucking years. It's so fucking shit. They're all soggy and don't even come with salt or vinegar, what the fuck? And then they wrap in it fucking last weeks newspaper because I suppose, much like British chip shops in the 1800s, they're too fucking poor to afford proper wrapping paper. It's not fucking 'authentic', it's tacky. Even the most touristy chippy's in London don't do that shit (or maybe they do? probably not though). And then they don't even offer chips and cheese. Fact: The highest selling items from any chip shop are, chips and doner kebabs. The chips usually come with cheese or maybe curry sauce. Most people don't get plain chips.

7. How everything is so far apart. Being able to walk everywhere for everything you could possibly need = fucking convinient

8. The lack of music. For a country with 30 million people, jesus christ we don't have alot of very good bands. In fact, most of our most popular bands are total and utter shite. And our major cities ( I am counting Kelowna, Calgary, and Edmonton here because I have been to them all recently and none of them had anything) have shit all for live music. A single night at King Tut's has better music than Kelowna will see in a year. Better atmosphere too. Why don't crowds here fully sing songs before the artist even steps on stage?

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Brothers Karamazov

“And whether you are absorbed in the most important pursuits, reaching out for the highest honors, or struck down by the cruelest griefs, always remember how good it felt when we were all here together, united by a good and decent feeling, which made us…better people, probably, than we would otherwise have been.”

This apparently is from the ending. It made me happy. I should probably finish reading it and maybe actually get to this part

Sunday, May 23, 2010

First thing when I get back to Canada I'm wearing a kilt and drinking in a park, or Screw the idiots who make the rules in my country.

Occasionally I like to read news from back home. Not very often but occasionally. Lately I've been reading it more - probably because I'm going to be going there soon.

In the last two days, I've come across two stories which have led me to become very unhappy with my country. The first is about a student, Hamish Jacobs, from a high school in south Alberta who wants to pay respect to his Scottish heritage and wear a kilt to his graduation ceremony. The school claims that this is against the dress code  They further this claim by going on to say that they allowed a previous student to wear a kilt and he flashed everyone. Obviously the way that one dresses is indicative of ones desire to wag their penis at everybody. 

As a Canadian citizen with Scottish heritage who is currently living in Scotland, let me simply say that this high school is very lucky to be nowhere near any large population of Scottish folk because this is exactly the sort of bullshit that they would not stand for.

The last time the kilt was banned was in the 1700s during a little something called the Jacobite Uprising. In short, there was a Scottish king ruling over all of Britain. The English didn't like him so they got rid of him and replaced him with an English bloke. This really pissed the Scots off so they just started killing the shit out of everything. In response, England banned kilts and all other manners of Highland dress in an attempt to squash Highland culture.

So it's kindave a big deal when some backwards hick highschool says that some kid can't wear a kilt to his grad. Kilt's are the peak of formality. They are worn at weddings, black tie events, and graduation ceremonies - and not just by a few stray Scots. They are worn by everyone. Dress pants are not formal enough.

Oh look! The Queen of England seems to think that kilts are a perfectly acceptable manner of dress and, let me remind you, the Queen (as much as I disagree with this policy) is the Head of State of Canada. As well as that, the kilt is part of our military dress. So yeah, RAYMOND SENIOR HIGH, you're definitely not overruling the traditions of the two oldest and most formal institutions in this country. Your opinion is correct here.

Anyone wishing to support Hamish Jacobs (or basic common sense and decency) ought to go here.

Now, for the second thing.  Ten Provincial and National Parks across Alberta and two in BC (Yoho and Kootenay) are banning all alcohol for the May Long Weekend. Alberta's tourism minister claims that this is a very small crackdown as they are only imposing this ban on 10 out of 500 parks in Alberta. Except for that one of those ten parks is Banff you fucking twat. It's not one of the biggest tourist destinations in the country - certainly not the biggest tourist destination in Alberta. So it's really not a big deal.

FUN FACT: Banning liquor doesn't work. Not even a little. People sincerely do not give a shit. For lots of people this is one of the few times in the summer where they're able to have a few days off work to go and blow off some steam and liquor ban or not, they're gonna god damn well drink. Not that I'm condoning getting completely shitfaced and being a jackass as some people will inevitably do but it's kindave a dick move when you ban THE REST OF EVERYONE ELSE FROM HAVING A SINGLE LITTLE DRINK AFTER A NICE DAY OUT IN THE SUN. 

It's completely the wrong way to go about things and more than a few honest good people's weekends are going to be ruined by unnecessary fines because your government is such a bunch of fucking prudes when it comes to drinking.

You know what's really nice: going to the park in the middle of the day, laying in the sun and having some drinks, or sharing a bottle of wine with friends by the riverside, or getting trashed at an airport cause you're pissed off at Iceland and have to spend the night and have nothing better to do. What part of our society is going to come crashing to the ground if you let people drink in public? None of it. In fact, you'll find a much more relaxed and conservative view towards alcohol consumption when it's not treated like a cardinal sin.

Friday, March 26, 2010

I'm afraid that the hypothalamus will be quite operational when your friends arrive

Today I decided that I should study a little bit for my mathematical biology class. I'm going over past midterms and looking at questions and things are going alrightish and then part of a question asks me this

" Sketch a typical nerve cell showing the soma, axon, dendrites, and presynaptic terminals. What is a space-clamped experiment? Explain in what sense a nerve axon is excitable "

No. Just no. Seriously? Fuck you. The "mathematical" part of this course is hard enough without you throwing a straight-up biology question at me. I mean, I understand that it's called Math Biology but why the fuck should I be able to sketch a nerve cell? That doesn't have anything to do with the mathematics. I know that a nerve measures the amount of electric potential coming into the cell and if that amount goes higher than a certain value (the action-potential), the nerve shoots out a bunch of electricity. I imagine it as looking like this.

Dendrites (fingers) sum electric potential coming into the neuron (Palpatine). It diffuses to the soma (bad guy cloak). If it exceeds a threshold level or fails to turn to the Dark Side, the neuron (Palpatine) produces a short electrical spike (fucking lightning bolts) which is conducted along the axon (Luke Skywalker). I am pretty sure this is how the human body works. 

The reason I know all these fun facts about nerve cells is because I NEED to know them to understand how the model works. What I don't need to know/really don't give a fuck about is:

1. What a nerve cell looks like
2. What it's different body parts are
3. What body part does what
4. Whether or not nerves are actually just microscopic Emperor Palpatines having temper tantrums inside of my body.

Here's a fun comparison: I wrote a paper that was heavily concerned MATHEMATICALLY with bunny rabbits dying and being born. I could not, however, draw for you a diagram of a bunny rabbit's sexybits even though sexybits are pretty important for rabbits to get born. Why can't I do this? Because it is completely unrelated to what I need to know.

Now it's time for things to get really messed up. My final is worth 100% of my mark in that course and it consists of three questions. Drawing a nerve cell would only be part of a question. But even if it's only worth one sixth to one third of a question, that's still 5%-10% of my final mark.

It's a good thing remembering diagrams and then drawing and labelling them is super-easy else I'd be even more pissed off than I am now.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

I keep them in a suitcase under my bed

I always lost time on the walk from work to my girlfriend's flat. If someone asked me for directions there, I probably couldn't give them because I was always too far gone. I can never remember how I got there or how I got home; it just happened.

Today when I arrived there was no answer. The door was unlocked and I wandered in. Everything was gone. Everything. There was no mess, no pictures, no furniture - even the stain from the bottle of wine we knocked over when we first made love was gone.

I should have known this would happen one day, should have seen this disappearing, and should have been part of it. She always talked about it and I always put it down as simple fantasizing - the kind we all dream about for comfort.

Instinctively I pulled out my phone to call her, to maybe catch her at the last second and join up. Instead, I just deleted her. Who goes through the trouble to clean out their flat and then doesn't ditch their cell at the bottom of a dumpster? The first tear started down my cheek

An empty flat is the best place to be alone in. For a few hours I stayed and was just that - completely alone with my mind, thinking one thing the entire time: She was gone.

Eventually, I had to leave. I did still have a life - even though I didn't want it anymore and would leave it just to find her. Stepping into the hallway, I took a deep breath to relieve myself of the death of her flat and saw the number on the door across from hers: 215.

Upstairs, I knocked. She answered.

"Grab only the things you need most", I said, "we're disappearing".

Monday, March 8, 2010

Ban the Belts

I usually put stories and other sort of things that I think as being more towards the properly entertaining end of things on Facebook and leave this for more 'ideas/thoughts I sortof had' because it's more fun than entertaining people but I'm pretty sure I would lose friends if I put this on Facebook or at the very least would have to answer awkward questions - awkward for the people asking them at any rate - and that does not sound like much fun.

At any rate, I wrote this in my head over the course of a couple different aeroplane trips I took. Enjoy, I-I hope, or at least try to remember that this is funny. I FIND IT HILARIOUS SO HA!

“And of course there’s Dominic Delong”, the pilot started to tell to his green navigator. He always told stories like these over long flights to his crew – or anyone who would listen really. One time he even told stories over the intercom, from London to Moscow, but the reprimand he received upon landing was enough to knock that idea away from him permanently.  “It was worth it”, he reminisced before continuing the story,

“ Dominic was a travelling salesmen, one of the oldest and most prolific. He’d been travelling all over the world selling his services to anyone who needed them since before you were even born. Every now and then you’d see him on your flight. All the pilots knew Dominic or at least could pick him out of the crowd because he really did fly that often. Never more than one night in any city, I figure, for at least 30 years straight. Of course, it’s not like it was hard to pick him out of a crowd. All that travelling had reduced his wardrobe to two worn and dirty dress shirts, a pair of slacks and this ridiculous colourful woollen vest that he wore every day, regardless if he was in Tahiti or Montreal. He was a fairly pleasant fellow but it was never easy to have a chat with him, he was always going, couldn’t ever stay just in one place and would hop around impatiently whenever he wasn’t moving anywhere. Those red, glazed over perma-morning eyes that every traveller gets was invented by Dominic, I think. He never looked any other way than as if he’d just woken up but he’d zoom about, impatient to get where he was going and always wanting to be three or four countries ahead of where he was. 

Slowly, as the years wore on and people started realizing how dangerous an aeroplane could be, more and more security measures started getting put in which meant more and more waiting for Dominic. Soon he had to start showing up at the airport hours before he left when all his life he’d always shown up five minutes before the plane went and he’d never missed a single flight. Nothing irritated him like waiting. Security beefed up more and more and he had to answer the same questions every day, many days more than once and in different languages too. Of course, he never bothered to learn any other language but just memorized the answers to each question and got by on that. Sometimes, the security would screw around with Dominic. They all knew who he was, everyone knew who he was. To be honest, it was kinda funny to see him get so frustrated over getting held up just a little bit.

Anyways, one day security is messing with Dominic and he misses his flight. His face goes bright red and he starts swearing and yelling at everyone so security jumps at this opportunity and decides to teach him a lesson. Four people grab Dominic and drag him into this little white perfectly sterilized room in the corner of the airport. It’d blind you to look at this room it’s so white and clean. So, they throw Dominic onto the only piece of furniture in the room, a table, and then they start stripping off his clothes. They gotta search him cause he’s dangerous they say. First comes off that colourful vest which just sets him off even angrier cause I suppose it had some emotional quality to it which is why he wore it all the time; then the shirt and the slacks come off so he’s wearing just this old pair of underwear which is barely there at all. It’s so worn that you can see-through it, the elastic’s all stretched out and useless and the thing is just full of holes. Security doesn’t even need to take these off, they just tug and the thing falls apart – practically disintegrates. 

Then they bend him over, snapping on those gloves, getting ready to give him the ol’ scissor and twist when they start hearing this grunting coming from Dominic. At first they think he’s just getting angrier with them and has gone past the point of making words but then they see he’s grabbed hold of his throbbing cock and is just beating away furiously. Veins are bulging all over him, face and neck and arms and especially his cock which looks like it could explode for all the blood flowing through it. Security just shrugs this off –   these guys have seen the weirdest shit and it’s more common than you’d think for someone to get off to a strip search. So, being the pro’s they are, they start focusing again on his rear. With fingertips just an inch away from his ass, Dominic starts talking, low in a breathy whisper in between grunts, “If – unh – you lot – hnf – are gonna jerk – ohn – me around – hah ah ah – then  I figure – mmf – that I might – ooh – as well – ahh – jerk me around too”.

This pissed security right off. Some homo getting his jollies was nothing they hadn’t dealt with before but Dominic was almost literally cockslapping each one of them in the face. Fingers were rammed aggressively into Dominic’s asshole and out of his cock shot a huge sticky wad that arced majestically through the air and hung endlessly at the peak before landing almost invisibly in the center of that sparkling clean white room.  Everything stopped for a second as everyone stared at the contamination and then security ordered Dominic to put his clothes on and get the hell out of the room.

Oddly, Dominic was far from being pissed off about the whole situation. Even that flight he’d missed which had him all worked up was a distant memory. He’d just had easily the best orgasm of his life. Now, there’s something you’ve gotta understand about Dominic. With all the travel he did he’s never had time for meeting a girl really and so, over the years to compensate for that he’d been spending every night with the best whores money could buy; whores from all over the world. You name a country and there’s a fair chance that Dominic has fucked one of their whores. Sometimes I think that the reason Dominic travelled so much was because he couldn’t make up his mind which whores from which parts he liked best. After all that though, somehow, somehow some fat balding pudgy fingered arrogant security guard had given him the best orgasm he’d ever had. He was hooked.

Soon he started going into airports with a little plastic baggie of sugar shoved up his ass and then just a little piece of raw meat in there with it. Security dogs would be all over his ass and time and time again he’d get hauled into that little purified white room and jerk himself silly till the police found that little baggie of sugar and had to let him go when they found out he wasn’t smuggling drugs.”

“So what happened to Dominic?”, asked the green navigator.

“Well, as far as I know”, began the pilot but the cockpit door swung open and two men wearing balaclavas and brandishing their belts burst into the cockpit. One of them swung at the navigator, the buckle hitting him square in the temple and knocking him unconscious to the floor. The other wrapped his belt around the neck of the co-pilot and squeezed till it looked as though the co-pilot’s eyes would pop right out of his skull and a vein on his forehead grew sickly large, throbbing with an ever weakening pulse.  

“ All they used were belts, some of them with beltbuckles, huge beltbuckles. They could knock you unconscious in one swift whip and they did it to the people who didn’t co-operate or didn’t take them seriously. Belts... that’s all it took”. 
­ – ­Passenger 144 sole survivor of Flight 161 Chicago

“In light of recent events”, began Chip Harris, assistant-magistrate to the Committee for Air Safety and Inspection and president of OxyGo, the company that makes those little plastic-bags-with-mouthpieces that fall from the overhead in the event of an incident, “I think we need to reconsider our list of contraband items”. Words escaped his huge guffawing wrinkled jowls in a slow thin drawl and caterpillar eyebrows wriggled up and down as he spoke.

The emergency meeting of the Committee for Air Safety and Inspection was called by Chip himself and so he held the floor. The rest of the board, all self-important and pedantic like Chip, were unhappy about the arrangement; each one loathed him but wouldn’t dare admit it. Chip was just too important to cross.

“Now, over the past ten years we’ve put together quite the impressive list of dangerous items  for air travel but somehow, somehow”, his slow drawl lingered on the word as if it were a personal attack on his dignity that such a mistake had been made, “somehow we missed belts. For years we’ve long known the potential of a belt to be used as a weapon. Let’s be honest, what good parent hasn’t whipped their kid into shape with a belt once or twice; yet we somehow, perhaps naively, failed to realize the damage that could be done by terrorists weaponizing belts. Gentleman, we have no one but ourselves to blame for this travesty”.

The room nodded in grim agreement. Towards the back, a young skittish intern raised his hand,
“Couldn’t we blame the terrorists, s-sir?”

Chip froze and stared into the intern without any emotion before suddenly breaking into a laugh,

“Of course we could son. Couldn’t we blame the terrorists, HAW HAW”, Chip's eyebrow wiggled up and down when he laughed deep from his belly, " They did commit the crime, correct?".

The rest of the board looked nervously around, not wanting to answer – except for the intern,

"Well yes, how can we be expected to predict every single move that a terrorist will ever make. Or every crazy person for that matter. You don't have to have a political agenda to commit a horrible crime. The best we can do is just try to make it as hard as possible for these people to harm us and if they manage to find a way around, a new way to hurt us that we haven't thought of, well then there's nothing we can do about it. I understand that people have died and that it's horrible, but belts, really? That's ludicrous, how could anyone have foreseen this and even if they could, who would have gone along with banning belts before all this happened. You'd have been considered a paranoid loony".

Again the board looked nervously around. Chip slowly began walking around the table towards the intern.

"Well son, I never did think of it that way".

Halfway down the table he stopped and stooped over with difficulty to remove his shoes,

" They're always gonna find a way, that's what yer gettin' at right son? Well I suppose you're right about that".
Chip stopped behind the intern and placed his left hand on his shoulder. The board looked amongst each other stunned. The intern looked up at Chip in disbelief,

"I - really?".

"Well, yes son", replied Chip before he quickly raised his right hand and brought down the heel of his shoe into the side of the intern's head. There was an obedient silence from the board. The intern lay dazed on the floor for a second and struggled to pull himself up on all fours

"We couldn't know anymore about the terrorists using belts than you could know about me hitting you with my shoe", snarled Chip before striking the intern again with his shoe - this time catching him on the back of the neck where the spine meets the skull with a dull ‘THWOCK’. The intern dropped face first, sprawled out and moaning. Turning him over to look in his eyes, Chip brought his face right up to the intern's,

" We always need to be prepared. We let our guard down for one second and they win, son. Then our whole way of living is left broken and dying, much like yourself, and we absolutely cannot have that".
The shoe was brought down quickly three times in succession, blood spurted from the intern's face and little drops spattered vertically along the middle of Chip's torso.

"Well this is just far too messy", complained Chip, while the intern tried to plea but could only gurgle through his own blood. For a moment, Chip sat silently, head cocked to the side. The board watched in fear and silence. No one dared stop Chip now. Reaching down and pulling his socks from his feet, Chip tied them together and then wound them round the intern's neck.

"This is much easier", he remarked as he hoisted the intern's head up and pulled on the ends of his socks as hard as he could. The blood in the intern's mouth seeped out between his teeth and spewed outward as he tried to breath. His hands pulled at the socks pitifully and then they dropped as his eyes rolled into the back of his head.

Chip let the body drop, straightened his tie, and then resumed his place at the head of the table.

"Gentlemen, today has been a valuable learning experience".

The board nodded in agreement, unable to take their eyes off the brutalized body of the intern.

"Personally, after today, I'm of the thought that literally any article of clothing could be construed into a makeshift weapon. Wouldn't you all agree?"

Again, they nodded

"Belts, shoes, socks - it doesn't just end there. Jeans, sweatpants, necklaces, bras, skirts, dress shirts, any one of these and more could be all a terrorist needs to front their next attack. Clearly, the only option here, as unpopular an opinion it may be, is to ban all articles of clothing on airplanes."

As anyone could have predicted there was a huge backlash from the public to the Committee for Air Safety, and ultimately Chip's, decision to ban clothing on all flights. The biggest protest, of course, came from the airline industry itself who stood to lose millions, possibly billions of dollars due to this decision. At first, as assumed, flight numbers were down but people need to get places, have to get places, and will put up with an unbelievable amount of nonsense to make that happen. So slowly, numbers started creeping back up. Then something happen that no one could have predicted. Airlines started making profits that they'd never had before - people couldn't wait to get on an aeroplane and each and every airline was booked up days in advance.

Of course, no one who knew the reason behind this boost in industry would ever have given out the reason why; they were all too ashamed; and too frightened that their deprived acts would get out. Other's were too embarrassed to even believe that they could have witnessed such things, much less that they could have happened to them. Chip never had any warning what was coming his way.

Normally, he preferred to fly private, but a transatlantic flight was a bit much for even his wallet to pick up, so business class it was. Arriving four hours before the flight, in a huff and complaining the entire time about how 'goddamned shitty this service is, do they even know who I am?'. Chip finally boarded the plane, took his seat in the middle aisle, and waited to take off while watching all the naked people take their seats all along the plane - in particular, watching the girls. Beside him, a young couple sat down and were just a little bit too friendly, a little bit too inviting, and a little bit too interested in Chip. In response, Chip was just a little bit too interested in the bare woman's chest and just a little bit too proud that this whole circumstance was his own idea.

The plane started down the runway and before it had lifted off the ground, the couple beside Chip were sucking away at each other's faces. Chip turned red and tried ever so hard not to notice the man's erect penis which pointed straight up and to the right, in the exact direction where Chip was seated. Not 100 feet off the ground, the girl grabbed that cock and pulled it away from Chip, rubbing furiously.

In averting his eyes, Chip saw that the couple seated next to him were not alone. Everyone in the plane was committed in some heinous sexual act - whether they wanted to be or not. In requiring that no one wear clothes on airplanes, Chip had created a haven for sex-addicts, perverts, and paedophiles all around the world. Horrified, his eyes darted in every direction, landing on worse things each time: Men on women, ,en on men, men and women on children, even children on children. This was not what Chip had intended. The only thing worse than unnecessary death is unnecessary sex, and it was happening all around him.

Looking across the aisle, Chip saw one man sucking away at another, head bobbing up and down like a perverted dippy bird, and vomited right in the aisle. No one took any notice of this and Chip got out of his seat - ran straight towards the bathroom where he intended to lock himself for the entirety of the flight. The door burst open as he reached for the handle and caught Chip on the nose, knocking him to the floor. Out lumbered a behemoth of a man who, on sight of Chip laying on the ground, sprouted a cock rocket that was stuck pointed downwards by the undulating waves of fat.

The man dropped on top of Chip, sending ripples of fat along his body while driving the air from Chip's lungs. The next thing he drove was his cock right up Chip's ass while crushing the spine and lifting Chip's head backward by the nostrils. Chip tried to scream but only a pitiful short croak could escape his flattened lungs while another man, younger and with a wicked smile, walked down the aisle - intent eyes eyeing Chip up and down before winking and then sliding his cock down Chip's mouth. The weak gasps for air from Chip only excited the man more as he forced his shaft further and further down Chip's throat until the only thing Chip could do was bleed pathetically from his nose all over the base of a cock as the world around him faded to black.

Monday, February 22, 2010

A completely not average day-in-the-life

I got bored whilst writing a paper yesterday so I decided to chronologically keep track of what I was doing/thinkin. I have learned that I AM A VERY ANGRY PERSON!

17:10 - Gary Bettman is a fucking idiot, someone should have fired him years ago. "It's niave to just think the Olympics are great, so go". R-Really? You know what? Keep your fucking NHL players. No one'll wanna watch them play when the Olympics are on anyhow so instead everyone will just get pissed off at you for being a greedy little prick.

17:41 - Writing papers gets really tricky when you don't fully understand what you're talking about. "You should explain more about the wave number here". Gee Professor Lady, I would really love too.

18:37 - Three and a half hours and I'm done editing Section 1.1. That's about one seventh done! Though I probably wasted a good hour and a half on news/complaining about Bettman/hockey/trying to learn maths. I still have six hours till hockey, I should finish easy.

18:46 - I've found that in general, toilet graffiti is so much better in the UK. I've never seen Blackadder quotes scribbled on a toilet wall in North America

18:48 - Is it okay to just outright plagiarize a line that my prof suggested in her edit? I'm pretty sure it's allowed but I still feel bad doing it.

19:04 - Thing #1 about writing papers that pisses me off: "Make it clear for someone who hasn't seen this before". I hate that so much. No one who doesn't already understand or know about pattern formation is going to go looking for and read this. Fuck. Even the cursory introduction I gave feels like too much and now I have to rehash more things that everyone already knows. Man, can we just get straight to the sexin'? I don't want to worry about introductions or background info or building a relationship based on prior knowledge. I want the good shit now and if you can't keep up with me then go to hell - that's how I do my maths.

19:13 - FACT: I use Oxford Commas and always have. I find them to be more aesthetically pleasing.
            FACT: No one who reads a math paper is going to notice, much less have an opinion about,  Oxford Commas

19:20 - Thing #2 that pisses me off about writing papers: having to answer retarded questions. No, a predator-prey system cannot be positive-feedback unless the predators have somehow found a way to increase the prey population by eating them.

19:52 - Either there are a bunch of maths terms not recognized as words in the English language or Word is mathematically illiterate. Examples: eigenvalue, eigenvector, activator, diagonalizable, nondimensionalizing, linearizing, Jacobian. Oddly enough, Google Chrome thinks all those things are words except nondimensionalizing and linearizing.

20:35 - The people next to me are making worksheets for some primary school maths class. Is it wrong of me to hate them so fucking much? "What will occur next in the pattern?" DON'T YOU FUCKING GET ME STARTED ON PATTERNS ASSHOLE.

21:49 - Paragraph one suggestion: " How does this effect wavelength?"
            Paragraph two suggestion: " How does this effect wavelength?"
I mentioned wavelength in paragraph three so there should be no suggestions right? Wrong.
           Paragraph three suggestion: " Define wavelength".
Really? C'mon.

22:16 - Sign that the world hates you: your code, which worked perfectly fine a week ago and has not been changed in any significant way since then, all of a sudden decides, "NO. I AM GOING TO MAKE ERROR MESSAGES FUCKING JUST LIKE EVERYWHERE".

22:20 - Problem solved. Though it shouldn't have been a problem in the first place cause I ran the code like 50 times before with no issues. Computers can be giant cocks somethings.

22:22 - Problem not solved. Getting completely different (and completely shit) results from the ones I did last week with exactly the same parameters.

22:34 - But then when I try it for a different functional value for a(x) it gives me the exact fucking same result as before. You, Mr.Computer, are a cunt and I don't need this shit from you now.

22:40 - Scratch that, I'm retarded and made a typo in my draft which I then looked at to see which parameter values I needed to test but it was wrong so everything got fucked up. Troubleshooting folks, it never fails to make you feel like a gigantic twat. By my count, I just wasted 24 minutes because of a missing zero.

22:58 - FACT: Glasgow Uni Library computers automatically shut off after 480 minutes use.
            FACT: They also shut off automatically at midnight. Even though the library is open till 2. This is very frustrating as it takes a good 5-10 minutes to get them started again.

23:05 - Done editing, will write conclusion/fight with LaTeX tomorrow

23:10 - My foot's been hurting lately, except for when I'm deep in thought and do something totally normal for my, like say walk on a ledge on the way home and then jump off. Ouchies.

23:13 - Running also hurts - apparently - but I think I'll try that anyways.

23:18 - Dear Ladies, Fucking gigantic heels are not sexy. Giraffes, in my opinion, are the silliest looking creatures on Earth. You are walking like how a giraffe walks and it makes me giggle. I would not fuck a giraffe.

0:46 - Fuck Brodeur, put Luongo in net. (note: This is right when the game started).

0:51 - So I'm watching hockey with a French/Irish guy, a Lithuanian, a Finlander, and a Slovak. East Europeans are awesome.

0:57 - Brodeur, seriously, what the fuck?

1:08 - I saw Shawn Majumder on the tv, it was brilliant. Seconds later, the light nearly fell out of the roof in the common room. Conienidence? I think not. PS - I live in a shithole.

1:50 - The British reporter has been sucking America's dick all night long and it's really starting to piss me off. "Canada needs to pick up their game because America's all over them". No, no they're not, you retard. Are you even watching the same game? We're all over them. I think the fact that Canada's had twice as many shots on goal reflects that fact. Also: I'm pretty sure he doesn't actually know hockey. Are you explaining to us how offside works because you think we don't understand, or are you just repeating it to yourself so you don't forget? Either way, it's annoying. Please stop explaining rules during play.

2:03 - Brodeur shouldn't have been playing against the Swiss and he certainly shouldn't be playing the States.

3:12 - The Lithuanian just beat me at NHL 08, Canada vs US, 5-3. Fuck.