Saturday, July 31, 2010

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Favourite Places

This is my son's new favourite place, along the Notikewin River. Mine too.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Threes

Another blogger used this three things format to share some information about his identity and his answers intrigued me so I thought I would share mine.

THREE THINGS YOU LIKE ABOUT YOURSELF:
1. sense of humour
2. somehow I managed to attract really terrific people into my life
3. my bumbling professor-ness

THREE THINGS YOU CAN IMPROVE ABOUT YOURSELF:
1. my worst-case-scenario-izing
2. knowing when to shut up
3. my waistline

THREE PARTS OF YOUR HERITAGE:
1. Scottish
2. Scottish
3. Who knows?

THREE+ THINGS THAT SCARE YOU:
1. turkeys
2. June bugs
3. Rosie O'Donnell
4. whales (simultaneous terror and wonder, it's a religious experience)
5. that lady with Trichotillomania who whispers "shhhhh" in the movie Shutter Island.
6. people who brag they never read
7. family reunions

THREE OF YOUR EVERYDAY ESSENTIALS:
1. books
2. a pillow
3. I-pod

THREE THINGS YOU ARE WEARING RIGHT NOW:
1. T-shirt
2. boxers
3. wedding ring

THREE OF YOUR FAVORITE BANDS OR ARTISTS AT THE MOMENT:
1. my daughter
2. my son
3. Aaron James Sorenson

THREE NEW THINGS YOU WANT TO TRY IN THE NEXT 12 MONTHS
1. white-water rafting
2. saving $10,000
3. losing weight

THREE THINGS YOU WANT IN A RELATIONSHIP (Love is a given):
1. to be needed
2. to be listened to, not for someone to solve my problems
3. playfulness

TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE: (in no order, it’s more fun that way)
1. I have been in two provinces at once.
2. I have showered in a woman's locker-room.
3. I have peed next to Bryan Adams.

THREE PHYSICAL THINGS ABOUT THE OPPOSITE SEX YOU ARE ATTRACTED TO THAT APPEAL TO YOU:
1. curves
2. heat
3. talent/communication skills

THREE THINGS YOU JUST CAN'T DO:
1. add hours and minutes
2. get better at playing the guitar
3. eat lobster (giant bug)

THREE OF YOUR FAVORITE HOBBIES:
1. writing/blogging/reading
2. art
3. guitar/cooking vegetarian

THREE THINGS YOU WANT TO DO REALLY BADLY RIGHT NOW:
1. magically remove aches
2. win a lottery, any lottery
3. magically transform my teens into well-adjusted, responsible successful adults

THREE CAREERS YOU'RE CONSIDERING:
1. Teaching adults
2. Art
3. Journalism

THREE PLACES YOU WANT TO GO ON VACATION:
1. Scotland
2. Sydney, Nova Scotia
3. Iceland

THINGS YOU WANT TO DO BEFORE YOU DIE:
1. ensure my children get an education
2. publish a book
3. get another degree

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Weird Word-of-the-Day Wednesday

Actually, it's not that weird, it just looks weird: "ceilidh," pronounced "kay-lay." Apparently, it's Scottish Gaelic for a "visit, informal social gathering, get-together, dance or party."

Cheers to many ceilidhs in your future and mine, kilts not necessarily required. However, wearing a kilt is on my bucket list; I hope to convince my son that we should wear them at his wedding one day to show our proud Scottish heritage. Did I mention his name is Mackenzie, which apparently means "son of the wise, great ruler?" It was my wife's name-choice. Honest. ;)

Monday, July 19, 2010

Have you been on your roof lately?

Where did that piece of flashing go?!!! Spread the word: check your roof regularly. Do! It! Today! Son-of-a-bee-sting!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Jasper Avenue Moments

Recently I've been working temporarily in downtown Edmonton. Some thoughts:
  • I requested the cheapest room I could get in this hotel and so they gave me a wheelchair access room which is groovy but the seat in the shower freaks me out and makes me feel super old.
  • I hate cable TV especially channel 5 with its constantly scrolling TV guide that reveals only what's happening in one hour blocks. Annoy. Ing. Ness.
  • The paintball episode of Community is one of the funniest things I've watched in forever.
  • They sure smoke a lot on Mad Men.
  • Bride of Chucky is hilariously bad (as I mentioned, I hate cable TV).
  • I'm tired of TV. Can you tell?
  • What do crackheads do for a living? (Don't misjudge downtown Edmonton--I only saw two, maybe three.)
  • Jasper Avenue makes me :) especially when some Spanish dude on a bike asked me in broken English how to get to West Edmonton Mall.
  • Sobeys seems all hip and urban but it's really just a fancy IGA (but I still like their panini sandwiches).
  • There should be a reality show featuring people who clean windows on skyscrapers.
  • The women at my temporary job are hilarious: "What the fong?!" (Inside joke.)
  • Winston Churchill Square seems to be missing. (I looked everywhere.)
  • I want to go home.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

What is the value of a Toonie & a Loonie?

Thinking Man
D.B. Stewart

My son told me about a kind woman he met the other day. She found a toonie and a loonie on the floor and since my son was working nearby, she offered it to him. Her behaviour confused him; there was no way to determine who dropped the change so he asked her why she didn’t just keep the money for herself. He can’t recall her exact reply but the way he explained it me, I think she wanted to share this vital lesson: “you get what you give.”

My son was quite happy to get what she gave. But what I suggested to him later is that she probably enjoyed the giving part more than keeping the money. In other words, the lesson was not just for him, it was for her too. Let me explain.

Question: what do you have to get in order to be happy?

There are so many answers. Wealth? The perfect career? The ideal spouse? A Ford Mustang Shadow? Botox? "If” we do such-and-such, “then” such-and-such will happen and happiness will result, right?

But according to Professor Srikumar.S. Rao, “there is nothing that you have to get, be or do to be happy.” Unfortunately though, he thinks the majority of people are overwhelmed with getting, being or doing and yet still feel unhappy. He supposes we tend to focus on the outcome instead of the process. He suggests that we put our passion in the process and if the outcome is good, that’s great and if it’s not, that’s okay too.

For example, how many people invest in the weight they want to be instead of enjoying how they feel when they eat less? How many of us might have an Ipod, but uh-oh, now we need an Ipad? Why not just enjoy the Ipod while we have one? That’s happiness.

I think my son’s kind stranger knows this. How many of us would have pocketed that money? She used an opportunity to make someone else happy and the by-product was a sweet moment of happiness just for herself.

I think it’s true. We get what we give and that often nets us so much more than the $3 we thought we needed.
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