Tuesday, September 27, 2011

My strange addiction

Okay, so it's not really that strange.  I am addicted to shoes.  I love them.  I love how high heels look, how cute they are, all the fun colours they come in. But, for the most part, I don't really want to wear them.  I would really just live in my Skechers.

This is really how my brain works.  I want to own the pretty shoes, I want to possess them, I want to make them mine but I don't really want to wear them anywhere, because they're never as comfortable as my Skechers.  Any of my Skechers actually, since I own multiple styles of them.

I own a decent number of heels too.  All different brands, different colours, different styles.  But I still look at them and love them and want to wear them.  And then I go for flats.

I'm just not willing to choose style over comfort.

The reason for this rant?  My newest acquisitions (Damn Payless and their BOGO events.)

I actually went in to replace the pair that I'd been wearing all day, because they were sorely in need of replacement.  So it's all my own fault.  (And that damn BOGO.)   One positive is that I did have enough willpower to stop at 2 pairs.  I seriously fell in love with about 8 different styles.

I really like the black patents.  They're the pair that works as the replacement.  They're simple, but the patent makes them a little more fun.  And it makes them look less like just plain black shoes.  Besides, who doesn't love black patent shoes?!?  Am I right?

The other ones, well, I just like them.  They're fun.  And not quite black.  They're really a dark gun metal-like grey.  So different.

The other weird part is that these are "skinny" heels.  I'm usually firmly against skinny heels.  Obviously, they're not stilettos, but they are definitely thinner and taller than I would normally buy.  But I was completely comfortable in them.  The heels anyway, the shoes will take a little working in, but I tried them on at the end of the day after wearing heels all day, so they should be perfectly fine.

So yey.  Pretty new shoes for me.  To go with the pretty new pants I bought yesterday.

Ya, sticking to that budget really well, aren't I?

In my defense, I needed pants to replace the ones that I can no longer wear, and needed shoes to replace the ones that were broken.  Both the pants and the shoes that were replaced have already been disposed of.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Nothing to say...

But here, watch this:

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The wise words of Marilyn Monroe...

Not a phrase someone expects to hear - Marilyn Monroe, wise?  Really?  Wasn't she just a vapid sex-pot?

I'm reading a biography right now, and no, she really wasn't.  She was constantly searching information, knowledge.  Reading classic literature, studying art.  It's interesting.

Wise words of today are: "I can be smart when it's important, but most men don't like it." (spoken as Lorelei Lee in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes - 1952)

And now you'd suggest that she didn't actually speak them, they were scripted for her.  Except that it was Marilyn's idea to add them to the movie.  They weren't originally scripted.  And truer words have probably never been spoken.  And, it seems she based her entire persona on them.

It's sad that 59 years later it's still the same.  Men/boys do not like smart women in general.  Are they threatened by it?  Do they just like to feel intellectually superior?  Who knows but them.  And they're not telling.

So, we learn to either play stupid, or suffer their intolerance of us.  It's a petty game, really.  But even as young girls we know we have to learn how to play it.  Because even now, there's judgement if a woman can't get a man.

And a smart girl, even a pretty one, can rarely get a man as easily as a pretty dumb girl.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Ugh! *with a nose crinkle*

I had to put up a new shower curtain today. My old one (the plastic, inside part) had mold on it. This dates back to when I was lazy and didn't open the curtain back up to close off the shower after I'd been in it. So I decided it was time to either clean it, or replace it.

Being lazy, I chose replace. But now I have to deal with that toxic, gross, plastic smell. Probably for at least a week. I hate that smell. I don't know how to deal with that smell. You can't cover it up. It just hangs there in that tiny space of a room, and waits for you. Saying "hello, I'm a new plastic shower curtain over here, don't you love me yet?" And you just want to scream "NO!" and run from the room.

It's awful. And I know this post is as well, but seriously, I needed to vent about the curtain.

Besides the smell, I really liked my old shower curtain. I had double fun curtains. But the new inside one is just plain. And so, kind of boring. It makes me sad.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

babies, babies and more babies?

When did Grey's Anatomy become all about the babies?  Everyone either has one, or doesn't want one, or has an issue with one.  There are babies everywhere on this show.  I don't get it.

It used to be all about the selfish drama.  Suddenly there are families and people with actual feelings about other people's actions, and not in the way that is all about how it affects them.  It's strange.

I'm thinking maybe this is a good year to go out with a bang.  It's season 8 right?  Eight is a good number.   Patrick Dempsey has already said that he's out after this year.  And Ellen Pompeo has said similar though not quite as bluntly.  So really, why go on?  They are the main essence of the show.  And sure, there's still another Grey to step in, just in case Meredith isn't there anymore.  But can anyone really say that Lexi is as important to the story as Meredith is?

I guess this is why I'm not a tv writer.  I don't know the ins and outs.  I don't know the theories behind why shows do or don't get cancelled, or why they continue.  And so, I'll watch, and wait to see how much longer the show continues.

.... and holy crap, that's a sinkhole!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

When will the effort pay off?

I'm trying, really I am. 

Trying to get a new job.  Putting in as many resumes as I can find jobs to apply to.  Even part time.  And temporary positions.

I have to keep trying to stay positive.  But it's frustrating.

I understand that a lot of people are going through this at the moment.  It's just the climate of the economy.  And I should be grateful that I'm one of the people who still have a job while I'm searching.  This, I know.

My issues really come from watching people come and go from where I am, and I still sit there.  And some of these people are my friends.  And I've watched them leave (some in entirely bad circumstances) and eventually find positions that make them happy.  They've made changes in their lives based on that change, and they're doing well.   And I'm watching my life stay the same.  Partly because I'm afraid to take a risk, because I like the relative security of what I have.  And partly because I just don't know what else to do.  I can't make people see that I should be part of their organization.  I can't make up skills that I don't have, or convince people that I can do things that they don't see that I can do.  I just don't sell myself well enough for that.

I guess I should learn.  Add that to the list of things that I need to put more effort into.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Lord, help me be strong...

Okay, so this post is probably going to end up with me coming across as mean and judgemental.  And yet, I'm still going to post it.  Why?  Because I'm trying to be real here.  And because, heck, why not still post it.  I'm thinking it, so I'm already mean and judgemental.  I might as well share it with the world.

We have a co-op student where I work.  Because I was on vacation, I had yet to work with her until today.  And boy, I don't know how this is going to work for the next several months.  I think she's probably a lovely girl.  But there's something... well, special about her.  Apparently she's a little bit deaf.  (Only a little bit?)  And apparently she's also got some sight issues.  And well.  Like I said, a little bit special.

She talks to loud on the phone.  And she talks too loud in general.  And yes, that can be chalked up to the deafness.  And she just tries to hard.  It's probably a case of wanting to be a part of the group, because she's not been readily accepted, but it's really just distinguishing her even more.  And I feel horrible about it.

But really, what can I do?  There are only so many annoying habits that a person can have in a small office, without being really, really annoying.  And so, at the moment, I'm just biting my tongue, and rolling my eyes to myself (and occasionally to my coworker also.)  And vowing to give her small tips in a constructive way.  Things that might help the months go by a little more smoothly. 

This is one of those trying moments.  And whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger, right?  So, this will be a good lesson in tolerance, and acceptance.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

It's the simple things in life...

I spent the day watching old movies (Thanks to TCM and my old-school VCR) and working on a baby gift for a good friend.  Also, there was reading involved before the movies and crafting started.

This is my idea of a nearly perfect day.

Also, my parents called to ask me if I wanted to go to dinner.  That made it pretty good also.

If only I could have eaten whatever I wanted, and not gained any weight from it, that would have made it perfect.  Also, if I could just avoid tomorrow being Sunday, the day before I return to work after vacation, that would improve the day also. 

I should probably be happy that today isn't Sunday, right?  At least there's one more day.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Thinking and thoughts

Nothing really exciting today.  I've had thoughts running rampant all day, but never the impulse to get up to put them here.  I should have, really, because then it would be far more interesting than this post.

I finished reading the last of the Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants books this afternoon, and started to think about my connections with my friends.  There's a lot of letter writing in that book - at least between Lena and Kostos, which isn't really between the friends, but still makes my point.  I think letter writing is a lost art.  And something that should be more missed than it is.  It's much more personal to have someone's handwriting on a physical page in front of you, than to see a random font on a computer screen.  The words take on more meaning, more emotion with the flow of the script on the page.

That's probably why I also feel more comfortable writing fiction with a notebook and a pen, than directly on to the computer.  The typing is part of the editing process.  When I write with a pen I have less time to think about the process, and less impulse to edit as I go.  Less chance to self-censor.  It's a truer version of what I'm trying to write, even if it's in desperate need of editing.

That's how I feel about letter writing.  You're more likely to write what you actually feel with a pen in your hand, and truer version of it, if you don't have the easier way to edit that's provided by being able to delete your thoughts as you go.  Even if you cross it out in ink, it's still there on the page. 

*shrug*  Maybe I'm just born in a wrong era.  Perhaps I belong back in the 40s, or 50s where there was no internet, no email, not the use of the telephone that there is now. 

Or maybe I can start a new trend.  Try something old, and make it new again. 

Here's to writing a letter.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

It's Wednesday

I went to the dentist today.  This is exceptionally boring considering I've just come back from Las Vegas.

But I still have my memories, right?  And pictures.

Lots and lots of pictures - No, I take that back.  Somehow I can take 400-500 pictures at a 2 hour concert, and I end up with precisely 151 pictures over the course of 4 days.  Figure that one out.  Doesn't seem like that many shots when put that way, does it?

Ah well.  I still have pictures. And memories.

I wonder if the rest of my current life is going to seem boring now that I've seen the randomness and bustle of Vegas?

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Memories of Vegas

Just returned from a three and a half day vacation to Las Vegas, Nevada.  I'd never been before and now I firmly believe it's somewhere everyone should experience at least once.  Because without seeing it, you can never, ever believe.

Starting at the beginning - about a year and a half ago, my friend (Shane) called me to tell me that his boyfriend had proposed on New Years Eve.  And that the wedding was probably going to be in Vegas, so he was giving me some warning to save money so that I could be there.  I've been hearing about Vegas from him for years already; it's his favorite place.  The idea of a wedding there was pretty exciting, though I had no idea how great it would be.

Fast forward to this past May: Because I'm a bit of a money idiot, I'm in debt (we all know this already, right?), so I had been waffling on whether or not I'd be able to go.  I really wanted to.  I knew I'd hate myself if I didn't go, but I didn't think I could afford it, and I didn't want to ask my parents to support what amounts to a vacation, just because I was stupid with my money (and because I already owe them a ton.  I call it spending my inheritance in advance.)  So I'm talking to another friend on the phone, sharing some of these thoughts, when she says "We're going to go.  Let's make the plans."  So, with her awesome connections, she contacted the travel agent and we got everything set up between us.  I still ended up having to ask my parents for the money, but I felt better about it.  I think part of my uncertainty was because I was afraid of going by myself.  And the money made a good excuse to wrap it up in a bow.  But once I had a traveling companion (one who'd offered herself, that I didn't have to ask to come with me) it made everything better.

And Flash forward to September 9.  Got up at 4:30 in the morning so we could pick up my traveling companion (Sarah) and get to the airport with some time to spare.  I haven't flown since I was 17, and obviously never with my "bionic" hips, so I was a little anxious about going through security.  But it was all super easy and our plane took off about 15 minutes late - apparently the co-pilot was pulled off of another bearing.  Despite the minor delay, we landed in Vegas about 30 minutes early and it was glorious!  The weather was beautiful!  We didn't check any bags, so we headed straight to our shuttle bus to the hotel - who, incidentally, nearly killed us several times on the trip.  We stayed at the Excalibur, which is definitely not one of the best hotels on the Strip, but was pretty cute from the outside, shaped like a castle (though we commented that it ought to have a moat - a lot of the other hotels had water features; Or a dragon - that would have been great!).  The room, while not fabulous, was serviceable; the smell of smoke permeated everything, even though it was a non-smoking room.  Because smoking is allowed basically everywhere in Nevada, we assume the smell was because it's impossible to walk anywhere without acquiring the smell of smoke yourself, and that would be brought up to the non-smoking room by every single guest.  And it's a hard smell to get rid of.
View from the hotel room window

Anyway, we hadn't eaten since the airport, so once we checked in, we headed to get something to eat (and use the free Wi-Fi in the food court - YEY for free Wi-Fi.) and then wandered a little in the hotel.  We found the pool, and decided to hang out there for a bit before meeting some friends, including the grooms, for drinks/dinner before they went to see the Cirque de Soleil show Zumanity (an amazing show, from what we hear.)  We were meeting them at New York, New York so it was just across the street from Excalibur.  New York New York really does look like a miniature version of New York city.  It's amazing.  It also has a roller coaster that's boarded on the inside of the resort and then runs around the outside, complete with a loop.  Freakin' awesome.  Sarah wanted to ride it, but being completely afraid of heights, I couldn't indulge her.
The lights of Paris resort

For the rest of the night, we walked up the Strip.  It's crazy!  There are "performers" on every corner - either dressed in some sort of sad costume (lots of Ironman, Transformers, Woody from Toy Story, a Jack Sparrow, Batman and Spiderman) waiting for someone to give them money, and then there's the flocks of people wearing T-shirts that say "Girls Girls Girls to your room in 20 minutes or less" and flapping pamphlets on their hands trying to get you to take them.  They were everywhere!  We passed a group of kids trying to be the next Jackson 5 (complete with an adult Joe Jackson type) by lip synching to J5 songs.  At one point, the youngest took the mic.  Singing is not his destiny.

As we wandered we managed to find the ABC Stores, that sell everything!  I mean everything!  Souvenirs to household goods, and also alcohol.  Of course everywhere sells alcohol.  People walk down the Strip with beers/margaritas, etc.. in their hands.  It's such a culture shock for the first few minutes.  And there were people everywhere.  And for someone like me who generally dislikes people in large groups, it took a little getting used to.  But it's definitely part of the charm of the Strip.  Every possible kind of person coexisting.  I definitely see the appeal.

That ended Friday - besides getting some alcohol and ordering a pizza to our hotel room where we promptly crashed.  We had been up since 4:30am our time after all.

Primrose Courtyard - the wedding
Saturday was wedding day.  We decided to take the monorail to the Wynn where the wedding was taking place.  BIG mistake.  We had to walk all the way through the MGM Grand to get to it, first of all.  Then we had to get from the Harrah's/Imperial monorail stop to the Wynn.  We got lost.  Several times.  It was not the best of mornings.  We did make it in time for the wedding though, and it was absolutely gorgeous - despite a little bit of rain, and some rather dramatic thunder.   The Primrose Courtyard was decorated beautifully in white flowers and candles, and the grooms both looked great.  It was a very touching ceremony, including the moments when each in turn pulled out their iPhone/Blackberry to read their vows.  I feel like I should describe so much more here, but I just can't.  It was just beautiful.  And I usually tend toward being less than sentimental. I'm so glad that I got to be a part of it.

After the ceremony there were some pictures and then we were to wait for the Photo Tour arranged for guests to take part in.  We happened across the wedding party and were invited up to see their suite in the Encore (the newest part of the Wynn Resort).  It was an amazing suite, with an amazing view of the Wynn tower of the resort.  It made Sarah and I really notice the downfalls of our room at the Excalibur.  But, as we were later informed, we did not want to know how much was being paid for that room.  It was still gorgeous. 

Then we headed back downstairs to the photo tour - first stop: The Desert.  Which actually turned out to be a vacant lot at the far end of the strip.  It did look kind of desert-like, with the Strip in the background, but it wasn't truly the desert.   There were some more group photos and then the wedding party separated and we headed to the famous "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign.  It's kind of cool.  There was an Elvis impersonator there, complete with his pink Cadillac.  And yes, we did have our picture taken in front of the sign.  We were officially tourists, with the photo to show for it.  While there, we ran into a local couple who had brought out their 4 month old baby. She wasn't wearing a hat, and apparently no sun lotion because she was burnt.  We don't understand parents like that.  She clearly wasn't going to remember the experience.  So, why? 

Chandelier Bar at Cosmopolitan
Next stop on the photo tour was The Bellagio.  We headed over to The Cosmopolitan next door first so that we could check out the Chandelier Bar.  It's 3 or 4 stories tall, and completely strung in chandelier crystals.  Amazing!  I've never seen anything like it.  It would be an amazing experience to sit there, having a drink, looking out at the world through crystal.  Then we went and wandered in The Bellagio.  Stained glass flowers on the ceiling in the lobby, and a flower garden in the centre with thousands of flowers, and more fountains.  Which is only impressive when you note that The Bellagio is the hotel with the dancing fountains in front.  The fountains run every fifteen minutes, but we didn't take time to view them at this point.  We still had Sunday.

After this it was time to head back to the Wynn, and from there we were free for a couple of hours before the reception.  It was being held at Maggiano's (http://www.maggianos.com) at the Fashion Show Mall.  So, after taking a few minutes to sit at a patio in the Wynn, we headed over to the Mall and wandered around.  And then we headed in to the reception.

Wedding guests numbered nearly forty people, so we were seated at four tables of 8, uniquely the Mariah table, the Leona table, the Victoria table, and ours the Vanessa table.  There were also signature drinks named after Holly Madison, Mariah Carey, Joan Rivers, Nick Carter, Chord Overstreet and Zac Efron.  (I tried the last three.  Yumm.)  The meal was phenomenal.  A superb selection of Italian items served family style, so we could sample them all.  I tried several things that I've never had before, and found that I loved them all.

It's Britney, bitch!
And then the biggest surprise of the night.  The DJ announces "Britney Spears!"  No, not the real Britney, but a damn good impersonator - technically a drag queen.  It was amazing.  She (he?) put on an amazing performance, and even sang a little him (her?) self.  Very entertaining.  And something that I'm sure I will never, ever see at another wedding again.

The plan after the reception was to head back to the Wynn and go to Tryst, the night club there.  But Sarah and I kind of screwed ourselves out of that plan by not bringing our ID.  Stupid girls.  Anyway, we headed back to our hotel (by cab this time, to avoid getting lost, and walking any further than we had to.  It turned out the cab fare was actually the same amount it cost for each of us to get a day pass on the monorail anyway, so we should have cabbed it in the first place.  Who knew?)

Bellagio dancing fountains
And then it was Sunday.  We didn't have anything specifically planned, but knew we wanted to wander around some more, just take our time.  And we had dinner reservations at Mon Ami Gabi at the Paris resort in the evening.  So, that's what we did.  We saw the Lion Habitat inside the MGM Grand, we went to the Flamingo habitat at the Flamingo (it stinks, literally), watched the fountains at the Bellagio and we wandered around at Caesar's Palace.  We also got to see the largest rain fall that Las Vegas has had in a very long time, as we sat in an outdoor, but thankfully covered, patio at Caesar's.  The rain came down so hard that the drains couldn't keep up.  It was practically flooded.  We watched the fountains at The Bellagio a couple of times, and stared in awe at a few more of the strangely costumed street people.  Then we headed to Paris.  We got a table on the patio, from which we could see the Bellagio fountains lighted at night.  And the meal was, again, amazing, complete with a carafe of Sangria.  We were both completely stuffed when we left the restaurant.  But we enjoyed every mouthful.
Bellagio fountain at night

From there, we headed over to meet Shane and take in the Sirens of TI show show at Treasure Island.  Highly entertaining.   Also highly suggestive, but hey, it's Vegas.  There was singing, dancing, fire and fireworks.  After that, we went to The Mirage, to watch the Volcanoes show.  Also pretty cool.  At this point, we said goodbye to Shane, and headed back to our hotel, knowing that our Vegas vacation was drawing to a close.  We had to get up early to head to the airport for our flight back to reality.

The flight home, while delayed over half an hour, was pretty uneventful.  Several of the others who attended the wedding were also on our flight, which was mildly amusing.  And we also had an idiot who had been on our flight to Vegas, that we both wanted to damage.  And while it was nice to get home, it was also bittersweet.  Vegas is a bit of a magical place.

Random notes:
1) There are no windows in Las Vegas.  It's a bit creepy that everywhere you go is dark.  And completely disorienting.  And of course, smokey.  It was so great to walk the Strip, just for the "fresh" air.  Each hotel had a completely different smell, because most of them pumped in scents with their air to mask the odor of smoke, and people who won't leave the casino to bathe. (Note: there are windows, but only in hotel rooms - everywhere else is void of outdoor influences.  They don't want the loser gamblers to be able to jump.)
2) We liked seeing the older couples who seemed to walk everywhere holding hands.  On the outside, it's sweet.  But then you wonder, maybe they're just doing it for fear of losing each other in the crowds. 
3) Why would anyone take children to a place like Las Vegas.  a) There's very little for them to do there - it is adult Disneyland after all.  b) Mostly everything to see has some content that's inappropriate for children - including the outfits on the waitresses.
4) It's disturbing to see people who had major health ailments (ie: oxygen tanks) sitting in a casino for hours on end.  And half of them were lighting up cigarettes at the same time.  I'm just left shaking my head in wonder.
5) Anyone can be a street performer.  Cotton Candy was the most amusing - a large black man, done up as a showgirl, shaking what his momma gave him.  Awesome!
6) Vegas weddings do not have to be either cheesy, or spur of the moment.  I say beautiful and classy, all the way.  Plus Britney.

More photos available here: Vegas Photos 2011

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


I'm obsessed with a song.  This, in itself is not shocking.  I regularly become obsessed with the new Backstreet Boys, or Nick Carter, or Gavin Degraw.

This time, however, I am obsessed with Maroon 5.  Moves Like Jagger.  Awesome.  I listen to it repeatedly.

LOVE IT!   Seriously hoping for some more new Maroon 5 soon.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Reading a book

And with this, I go back to my sofa - with my book.


Friday, September 2, 2011

It's Friday, Friday...

Thank Goodness it's Friday is not just a cliched phrase, it's a mantra where I work.

I know, there's a lot of people that can say that.  I'm not alone.  But it's okay, everyone's allowed to vent.

And this week wasn't really that bad.  The boss will be on vacation next week, and I'm on vacation after that (with a friend's wedding coming up too) so it's all good.  There's lots of chances to relax.

Tomorrow I'm going to see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 2 (again - for the 5th time) at the Imax before it's gone from the theatre.  That's exciting.  And since we're going to be in the States anyway, maybe we'll stop and I can buy some real Hershey's chocolate (the Canadian kind just isn't as good)  and if I'm REALLY lucky, maybe some Cherry Coke, since they don't make it here anymore.

That would make for a really good day.  And I'm doing it all with a good friend, and my mom.

Simple things are fab!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Thinking and thoughts

I'm tired.  In both the literal and figurative sense.

I'm finding it hard to be at work, and watch other people come and go, and to still be there. It makes me think that I'm stuck.  In a rut maybe.  Or that my destiny is to be there.  Forever.   Or that I'm not worthy of anything better.  And that's just depressing.  And then I fall into self-pity mode.   And that's not healthy.  I know it.  But I can't seem to stop it.  It's just there, right in front of me.  This horrible dread that just sits there, taunting me, saying I can't do any better than what I'm doing right now.

And I know this is a horrible way to feel.  I should be grateful for what I have: a steady job, with good benefits, and people that I don't hate working with.  And I manage to almost, kind of, support myself.  Even though I've got debt.  If I didn't have the debt then I'd be supporting myself.

And I have good friends.  And I should just be happy.

But right now, I'm just not.  And I'll probably feel better in the morning.  But it's hard to stop the thoughts that just roll around in my head.  Day after day.  All the time.

And I'll take a deep breath, and it'll all be fine.