Forever Loading: The Slow Internet-Havers Lament

internet_construction_workersHello, out there. I’m sure many of you are reading this through the wonderful world of high speed internet. I’m here to tell you there’s a whole world out there you thought died long ago. Sadly, there are still people (like me) who live with the struggle of painstakingly slow internet.

No, it’s not dial-up. At least with dial-up, there’s consistency. It might take a good three minutes for anything to load, but you know eventually, it will load. With slow, wireless internet, everyday is a surprise. No, not the fun kind. One day you might think all your (internet) problems are solved and the next, you’re forced to pull out the ‘ole DVD player.

As you more fortunate individuals speed through the 21st century, others less fortunate are forced to stare in the face of the spinning wheel of death. Sure, the country looks nice, but it comes at a price. The price: high speed internet. People will tell you that you can enjoy the crazy fast download speeds as any city-dweller enjoys. They’re wrong. What they’ll (conveniently) leave out is to even catch a glimpse of instant downloads, you need to build a 60 foot tower in your backyard. And even then, there’s no guarantees.

The worst is the false hope created by the appearance of a supposed connection… just to later learn that it was a figment of your imagination, that the connection wasn’t actually strong enough to do anything. You sit, watching those “three bars” taunting you, like a carrot on a stick, just out of reach.

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My Car Is Sick (a poem)

My car is sick
I have to stick
To buses and trains
Like I have no brains
For expensive repair
I’m in despair
Bring back my baby to me

My car is sick
Please fix it quick
Please make it better
Or I’ll need a sweater
For warmth

My car is sick
Maybe I’ll trick
The man next door
Into taking me to the store
For groceries.

My car is sick
Like a candle’s wick
That’s been snuffed out
And stepped on.

My car is sick
No more rhyming tricks
I think I’ll end it right here

Solutions to Life’s Uncomfortable Questions

smalltalk_1

I’m not a fan of small talk. Frankly, I’ve never met anyone who is, and yet, we hear it all the time. These super vague filler questions show up at places like uncomfortable work functions and with those rarely-seen family members. It’s basically the verbal equivalent to having your grandma pinch your cheeks.

Something needs to be done. Yes, I’m looking at you small talk instigators. What are you doing wrong, you ask? For starters, here are some pretty major questions to avoid.

Why don’t you tell me a little about yourself?

Unless you’re conducting an interview, don’t ask this question. I’m telling you, you’re probably not going to like the answer. Super vague questions are hard to answer. You’ll either end up with a short answer that doesn’t allow for much follow up, or someone’s entire life story. Both can be unpleasant. Rarely does this question lead to a surprisingly inspirational story. I wouldn’t hold out for the 1 out of 10.

What’s new?

People hear this question and feel bad about themselves if they didn’t recently get engaged or discover some rare mineral in the depths of the rainforest? I’m actually guilty of asking people this a lot, although I try change it up with an “Anything new and exciting in your life?” So, how do you answer this super impersonal question? Why not take their question literally and mention something small that’s recently new? Small accomplishments are still accomplishments.

Do you have a boyfriend? When’s the wedding? Any kids on the way? Still living at home…?

You think you’re out of the woods because you managed to wrangle yourself a significant other. Wrong! Where are your children? Have you thought about children? You don’t want children?! (gasp). That doesn’t fit into any of the social constructs I’m comfortable with! These questions frequently come up at family functions, especially with that family that doesn’t actually know a whole lot about you. So, what do you do when your answer to these questions is no (or yes, you do still live at home)? Answer with confidence! Own your life decisions! Yes, I do still live with my parents and I’m saving a boatload of money and I’m super thankful to be able to do so! Are you saving a boatload of money living pay cheque to pay cheque? Didn’t think so *mic drop*. Okay, maybe cut out that last part. I suppose the passive aggressive approach doesn’t make things less awkward.

You have the power to prevent awkward social situations. This has been a public services announcement.

Choosing What Not To Write Is Half The Battle

writers-block-2Every blogger has a different writing process. Some bloggers know exactly what they want to share with the world. Others (like me) go through a list of possible ideas before they land on one worthy of publishing. Through that process, I usually come up with a list of topics that are far too ridiculous or passive aggressive to post. However, I’ve decided to share a snippet of my random thoughts and ideas with you.

  • How to know if you’re crazy or just super cool
  • Passive Aggression: How to publicly shame people who don’t respond to your letters without actually calling them out (you know who you are)
  • Penpalling: It’s not for everyone (You know who you are)
  • Why I should Have Been an Abstract Artist (Apparently, anyone can do it)
  • People I’d Like to Hit in the Face With a Frying Pan
  • What to watch on Netflix when you’ve watched all of the good movies (and TV shows)

What are some of the most ridiculous things you’ve never written about? Feel free to share in the comments below.

I’m Not Old. I’m Cinderella.

barney-stinson-im-too-old-for-this_2Not long ago, I took a highly revered internet test letting me know my true age. After a grilling list of questions, it revealed that I am 62. Seeing as I was only born 26 years ago, this should have offended me; however, since the description following my “real age” was pretty accurate, it was hard to argue.

I’ve recently noticed that I’m having a hard time keeping up with what the “kids” are into. Actually, it’s not so much that I can’t keep up as I don’t care. I’m not interested in the latest acronym or abbreviation. I don’t need to stay up until the wee hours of the morning in order to call the night a success. When the clock strikes midnight, I’m out. If you can’t manage to fit in a good time before that, you must not be very fun. I’m basically Cinderella, and you wouldn’t call Cinderella old, would you? Exactly.

I’m not quite ready to jump straight to matinee shows and early bird dinners…well, at least not every night. Even if I could skip working for the next 30-some odd years and retire now, I wouldn’t…probably. I want to enjoy living the rest of my days, working full-time and all. I just want to do it my way, the slightly older way. I’m young. I’m full of life and possibility, but I also want to go to bed at a reasonable hour and wake up in a familiar place. If that makes me old, then embroider me an afghan and call me Deloris.

Happy Easter. Watch Out For The Terrifying Rabbit.

scary_easter_1Easter. A wonderful time spent with family and a grand turkey dinner. The day off work is also nice. However, I’ve been thinking about the odd traditions that come along with Easter. Namely, who decided that a chocolate egg-laying bunny would be a fun way to celebrate the winter thaw?

Who created the Easter Bunny, and why must they hand out eggs? Is it not special enough for there to be a giant chicken handing out it’s discoloured eggs? Hey kids, these ones are duds. Want them? Yes, this would be terrifying. However, I’m sure there are many traumatized kids that would argue a giant rabbit walking on its hind legs is equally terrifying. Trust me, I’ve seen the tears. And somehow it’s necessary to take a commemorative photo with this creature. Aren’t photos with Santa enough?

I think the Holiday Committee is pushing this Easter Bunny idea a little hard. Sure, Easter egg hunts are nice, but taking a photo with the Easter Bunny? Do they really think that kids are going to start begging their parents to take them to the mall so they can meet  a terrifyingly large rabbit? Next they’re going to convince kids to leave carrots out for the Easter Bunny and sleep on the couch in the hopes of catching a glimpse of this mystical creature.

Also, I don’t think we really need an excuse to buy copious amounts of chocolate. It’s like we won’t feel as guilty if it’s seasonal chocolate shaped as eggs or rabbits. Wouldn’t a mini egg taste just as good if it was an ordinary circle? Mini Circles. They pretty much sell themselves.

A little food for thought. Happy Easter.

2015: If There’s An Art Gallery Party, I’ll Be There.

Happy-New-Year-2015Just when you thought you were done with New Years Resolution posts, I swoop in and sneak mine in under the wire. Yes, this is under the wire. I was never really one to make resolutions. I thought it was kind of dumb to wait for January to change and improve your life. I also didn’t think I was capable of change. I’m actually quite rigid (see previous post). I’m one of those weird creatures of habit who’d rather do something boring and familiar than jump out on a limb and possibly experience something great. The fear of the unknown is real people!

So, I continued letting January (and the other 11 months) pass by without trying to figure out what I needed to fix in my life.  I figured, you can’t improve on perfection, right? If you think something should change, maybe it’s you! Down with New Years Resolutions…but I digress. Then last year happened. Last New Years, I decided to make some changes. I decided to stop wishing I had a better life and started living one.

Thing I did #1: No More Sugar (Sort of)

I cut out most of the food in my life that taste good. I know, doesn’t that sound fun? Yeah…it was super hard (case and point), but I powered through (with a little help from some very knowledgeable and supportive friends) and I lost 15lbs. Yeah, 15lbs!! I even ventured into the scary part of the gym, the one with the pumped up dudes checking themselves out in the mirror. It’s really not that hard to work out around them.

Thing I did #2: Books, Books, and More Books!

I’m reading more books. I used to fill my shelves with books I’d like to read. However, I rarely picked one up, let alone read it all the way to the end before getting distracted by another new book. Not anymore. I generally gravitate more towards the autobiographies/ collection of humorous, personal essays rather than the deep “War and Peace” types. Maybe one day I’ll get there. Baby steps.

Now What?

This year, I not only want to stick with these new changes, but I want to keep going. I’d like to fill my life with more cultural experiences. I want to watch more critically acclaimed movies (films?), read more books, and go to more cultural events. Art galleries have parties too, right? So, stay tuned for artsy Instagrams and blogs about my cultural adventures.

What are your New Years resolutions? Let me know in the comments below.