Category Archives: Events

Open

I ran 10 miles today!

In completely unrelated news, Alberta published its “here’s how we’re going to re-open the province” plan. Let’s see what we’ve got.

Comments:

May 14 sounds awful soon for some of the “Phase 1” items. Farmers’ markets? Hairstylists/barbers? Daycares and summer camps (even with limited occupancy)? That seems…frightening. Hopefully enough people share my same sentiment so that these places won’t be overrun by peeps. Or maybe they’ll push it back.

Also, movie theaters in stage 2? And schools, even with restrictions? Oofs.

And I might just be missing it, but I don’t see anything on there about universities. Who knows when that nonsense will reopen.

I’m glad there are no set times on stages 2 and 3, at least. I think Alberta has done a really good job of dealing with all of this; I just hope they remain as cautious and health-focused as things start opening up and the economy starts chugging again.

We don’t want to have to do all this again in a few months.

Good Lord, United States

04-28-2020-a

This is scary. Compare this to a pic of this website that I took back on March 26 (almost exactly a month ago).

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Too bad I didn’t have Canada on that first screenshot. We’ve shot up quite a bit, too, but not nearly to the extent that the United States has.

And some states still want to start opening things back up soon, huh?

Nova Scotia

There was a mass-shooting in Nova Scotia today/yesterday.

That kind of stuff doesn’t happen up here.

It’s getting national news coverage. It’s all that’s been talked about today, even with the pandemic and all its fallout.

But in the US, something like this would probably just be a headline on CNN. Maybe not even the major headline. The major headline would be Trump being an idiot in some form or another. This would be “18+ people killed in mass-shooting” as a smaller headline somewhere further down the page. A lot of people probably wouldn’t even click on it because we’re so damn desensitized to that kind of thing in the States.

Ugh.

Map of Fear

Perhaps this will all be over by the time I post these blogs and this website will either be defunct or just a memory of this rough time, but until then, here’s a world map of COVID-19 cases.

Y’know, in case there’s anyone out there who hasn’t seen this yet.

United States, you need to chill.

US vs. Canada

Hey friends in the United States, is it as bad down there as the news is making it sound? ‘Cause it sounds pretty bad.

Obviously no one is really focusing on Idaho; how’s Idaho? Is everyone walking around in fear of getting the virus? Is Gritman overwhelmed? Are people protesting the shelter-at-home orders to get back to work?

Obviously Canada is getting hit by this as well (just like the rest of the world), but I think the biggest difference between Canada and the US as far as how this is being handled is in how it’s become such a political thing in the US whereas up here, we haven’t politicized it.

At least, not nearly to the extent that the US has.

Like…the crisis is being dealt with despite political differences up here. Political differences are not being deepened by the crisis. Again, at least not to the extent that they are in the US.

It’s interesting and weird and scary.

And this is going to sound really stupid, but I feel guilty for not being in the United States. I feel guilty for living in a country that seems to be handling this quite well while like 99.8% of all the people I’ve ever cared about are getting traumatized by the Trumpster Dumpster and his complete incompetence. It sounds scary down there, and I feel guilty for not having to share that scariness, if that makes any sense at all.

Anyway.

Blah.

Annnnnnnnnnd the border’s closed.

I’m actually surprised they waited so long, but the US-Canadian border is now closed to all “non-essential” travel.

It’s only closed for 30 days, but I suspect it will extend for longer than that.

I know that this closure was a mutual decision between the US and Canada, but if things start to get really rough with all of this (economy-wise, especially), I really hope it doesn’t drive a wedge between the two countries. I’ve posted this video before on here, but I’ve been thinking about it with the recent talk of closing the border (and, of course, the actual closing of the border today).

Online Party 2K20

Yup, I was right. We got the email today that we’re supposed to use this weekend to convert our classes to some sort of format that can be delivered online; students will not be coming back to campus for the foreseeable future.

Converting to an online format won’t be too hard for my courses, but I imagine there are a lot of profs who are in a bit of a panic right now. Two days is not a lot of time to make this transition…

Cancellations

So classes were cancelled today.
Classes are never cancelled here.

It can be -40 degrees with ice covering every inch of every road and the U of C will still be like “lol campus beckons, children.”

From what I’ve heard, the last time classes were cancelled was during the 2013 floods.

I suspect they’re going to have us move to some sort of online format. When? Who knows. It wouldn’t surprise me if we have to do it over the weekend, even though as I’m writing this it’s 5 PM and we haven’t gotten any information yet other than that classes are closed today and are supposed to resume “in some format” on Monday.

So fun times.

Edit: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO BASEBALL IS BEING POSTPONED
HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO L I V E

SUCKY SUCK SUCKERSON

So I’m calling it right now: things will not be back to normal enough by the end of June for us to go on our super cool retirement trip for my mom.

Which sucks ass.

That is pretty much the only thing in my life that I’m looking forward to right now.

Balls.

Edit from mid-April: hahahaha, yeah, no way in hell is that trip happening. I’d be surprised if I could visit my mom at Christmas.

Freaking Virus, Yo

I want to preface this blog by saying that given the current circumstances, Nate and I have it pretty good.

We both still have jobs and neither job is in danger (probably).
We can still pay our condo fees, mortgage, bills, etc.
We are both healthy (as far as we know).
Everyone we care about is healthy (as far as we know).

So our situation could be much, much worse in many different ways.

But that doesn’t change the fact that I am angry and disappointed.

I’m angry that my mom is finally able to retire this year but won’t get to travel (at least for a while), which is what she immediately wanted to do. Hell, she can’t even go to, like, a mall to celebrate.

I’m angry that Nate and I had an awesome retirement trip planned out for her that was going to be awesome for all three of us. Redwoods? Mets games? Family hangout time? Gone.

I’m angry that I’ve finally gotten a semester completely off for the first time since 2017 and most of the long walks that I haven’t been able to do because I’ve been too busy I now can’t do because of social distancing restrictions (or just general “I don’t want to take the risk by going to Walmart/taking the bus/sharing this path with 100 people who don’t understand the concept of covering their mouth when they cough).

I’m angry about not knowing how long all this will last.

I’m angry that my parents are in one of the most at-risk populations and, due to the border being closed and airlines being NOPE, it would be very difficult for me to get down to them if either of them got sick.

I’m angry that there are probably enough people who are still not taking this seriously enough that a second surge of this thing is probably going to hit once we start gradually opening things back up.

I’m just. Angry.

Sorry for the complaining. I need to do it somewhere.

Hey Look, It’s Last Year’s NaNoWriMo

Well. That story wasn’t supposed to be non-fiction! Luckily this virus seems a lot less dangerous than the illness in my story. In my story, no one knows exactly what this illness is, how it spreads, or how it’s related to any other illnesses, which really gives them no way to treat it. Also, it’s got a 100% mortality rate, so…

Edit: I just realized it’s the same freaking ship as the one in my story, too. Fantastic.

Edit 2: holy hell, this became a thing.

02022020

Hey fartbags, it’s my birthday today!
(I use “fartbags” as a term of endearment, I promise.)

It’s also the birthday of a whole bunch of other people who are way cooler than me, including Calgary mayor Naheed Nenshi, writer James Joyce, and writer Thomas Disch (author of The Brave Little Toaster).

So, y’know, special.

But this year, February 2nd is an especially special day. Why? Because it’s 02/02/2020 – the first true* palindrome date since 11/11/1111. The next one won’t be until 12/12/2121.

February 2nd is also the 33rd day of the year and, since it’s a leap year this year, has 333 days following it in the year.

So yeah, super special.

*It’s a “true” palindrome date because it’s the same in DD/MM/YYYY format and MM/DD/YYYY format.

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Early Christmas!

Since I’m flying out to Moscow on Christmas and since all of BC is in Snowpocalypse Mode meaning we can’t get down to Nate’s parents’ house, we had our little mini Christmas this evening. Here are a few of the things I got from Nate:

Another book on Leibniz! YAY

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I’ve mentioned to him that I find the Chernobyl disaster very interesting and that I was wanting to see the HBO miniseries on it at some point (we don’t have TV, let alone the HBO channel, so that wasn’t going to happen), so he got me the series and a book!

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12-20-2019-c

And then, from my dad:

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He got one for Nate as well! It’ll be interesting to compare/contrast the results of this with the 23andMe results.

WOO!

Disasters

Uh oh, I found a YouTube channel called “Mega Disasters” and now I’m hooked.

I like learning about past human disasters. I suppose it’s a morbid curiosity that a lot of people have (hence channels like these) – almost like a guilty pleasure kind of thing.

I think one of the biggest disasters that has stuck with me ever since I first learned about it is the 1981 Hyatt Regency walkway collapse in Kansas City. Until the World Trade Center towers fell in 2001, the collapse was the deadliest structural collapse in US history.

I originally learned about it from my Advanced Fiction class in 2013, actually. Someone in the class wrote a story from the perspective of someone involved in the incident, and it sounded so incredibly horrific and terrible that I had to look it up and read about it.

The Mega Disasters channel has a video on it, but here are parts 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 of a longer documentary on it. It’s terrifying but really interesting as well.

If you watch it, be prepared to never feel safe in a building again.

Fear of Fire

Terrifying.

Fire is probably my biggest fear. I guess I should be more specific: the thought of the house catching on fire and threatening the people/animals/things I love is probably my biggest fear.

The worst outcome would be if a fire broke out and no one was home. Who would save Jazzy? That’s a terrifying thought: her being trapped in a flaming condo that is up on the third floor. I’ve read that cats are actually pretty good at escaping house fires, but unless the balcony door and/or the windows blew out, she’d be trapped in there. And the fall/jump is a long one. That’s hard to even think about.

If I was home, a fire would still (of course) be terrifying, but I feel like I’d at least have some sort of control. I keep my “essentials” next to me when I sleep; at minimum, this is my hard drive that has all my important documents/pictures/music/etc. on it. That would be easily saved, as I could shove it down my bra or something if I needed both hands free to get out with Nate and Jazzy.

If a fire was threatening from a distance (like in the CNN article), I’m not sure what we would end up taking with us when we fled. Jazzy, of course, and Jazzy provisions. Human provisions. I would take my laptop and a few of my books that I deem irreplaceable. Maybe some of my special trinkets from my trinket shelf?

I don’t consider myself a materialistic person, but I do feel like what we consider “inanimate objects” to still hold a degree of “consciousness,” even if that consciousness is a lot more loosely defined than the way we define it in humans and other living things (this view is very similar to panpsychism). I don’t like the idea of my things burning up in a fire mainly because I feel like they would “know” that they were left behind to be destroyed, if that makes any sense. I know that probably sounds crazy, but that’s how I feel about material things.

Anyway. The fear of fire is on my mind more than is probably healthy, but I always consider it any time I leave the house. It’s why I have three copies of all my important computer stuff and why I try to keep at least one of those copies in a different place than the others (or with me in my backpack) in case something disastrous happens.

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Spin Cycle

I should not be laughing at this, but oh my god, I am.

I am a bad person. I hope she’s okay.

Yikes

The Chernobyl disaster has always been something that’s been really interesting to me. It’s absolutely terrifying what happened, but the fact that it could have been much worse is even more terrifying.

I’ve heard good things about HBO’s mini-series, but I’ve never really seen one and don’t know how accurate they are. But the trailer is sufficiently terrifying, for sure.

This is the best documentary I’ve seen on it so far:

I fought the law, and the LAW LOST

Haha, so this happened on campus today.

(vid by wailard)

I didn’t see it in person, but everyone was talking about it in my STAT 213 class.

And of course the r/ucalgary subreddit had a lot of fun with it: 1 2

A random flood in the middle of the school is always a good thing in -35 weather.

IT’S A BIRTHDAY!

It was also 0℉ with a wind chill of -19℉ outside today, but I still walked because, much like a salmon that autopilots its way back to where it was hatched in order to lay its own eggs because that’s what it does, I go on autopilot and just do my walk because that’s what I do.

Tomorrow, though?

02-02-2019

LOL NOPE

It’s Anytime Fitness time tomorrow.

I got a perm(anent resident card)

I am now an official permanent resident of Canada!

WOO!

It sounds like this means I can do everything that Canadians can do except 1) vote and 2) hold high-level security clearance jobs.

It also means that the next step is applying for citizenship.

ONWARD!

A Song for Y’all

HEYOOOOOOO so I’ve mentioned in the past a few times the idea of re-writing Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire” to “update” it for current events.

Well, I just turned 30, so I figured why not try to re-write it so that it covers the past 30 years?

So I gave it a shot. A few things worth noting:

  • Joel had 40 years’ worth of stuff in his song; I have 30. Does that make a difference? Dunno.
  • The biggest, most impactful event in Joel’s original timeline (at least as far as the song is structured) is JFK’s assassination (“JFK, blown away, what else do I have to say?”). The biggest, most impactful event in my timeline is definitely 9/11. Unfortunately, it does not fit into the song’s timeline very nicely. It’s a whole verse before the JFK line and the way the verses are structured (I tried to give each verse a set number of years), it kind of just falls in the middle of one of them. So not as good.
  • Did I miss some major events? Surely. I tried to get a decent variety, but I suspect I missed a few things that would be obvious to include for other people.
  • I tried to stay true to his cadence for all of the lines, but a decent number of mine are different than the original.
  • This version absolutely sucks compared to the original.

OKAY, HERE WE GO. And as if it needs to be said, this is sung to the tune of “We Didn’t Start the Fire.”

Berlin Wall, Gorbachev, Syringe Tide, World Wide Web
Roger Rabbit, Cold War, Freddie Mercury
Reno, Nafta, Rodney King, World Trade Center Bombing
NAFTA, Exxon, Windows, united Germany
Chunnel, Hubble, Desert Storm, war on drugs, Morris Worm
Seinfeld, Waco siege, Space Shuttle Discovery
Friends, Game Boy, dino “Sue,” Hurricane Andrew
Clarence Thomas, GPS, a fatwa for Rushdie

(CHORUS)
We didn’t start the fire
It was always burning
Since the world’s been turning
We didn’t start the fire
No we didn’t light it
But we tried to fight it

O.J. Simpson, Amazon, Oklahoma City Bomb
Hale-Bopp, boy band pop, Dolly the sheep
Harry Potter, Princess Di, Toy Story, Columbine
Napster, Euro, Ted Kaczynski
ExxonMobil, Sarajevo, Mark McGwire, Galileo
Nunavut, Albright, Titanic, baseball strike,
AOL, Deep Blue, Mad Cow, Google
Bill Gates, Y2K, Clinton and Lewinsky

(CHORUS)

Bush beats Gore, hanging chads, iPods are the new fad
Airplanes hijacked, 9/11 attacks
War on Terror, Taliban, U.S. invades Afghanistan
Homeland, anthrax, and the Patriot Act
Iraq War, Saddam Hussein, Stock exchange, Bush again
Columbia, protests, North Korea nuke test,
SARS, Mir, YouTube, Muhammed, Pluto,
Facebook, Wikipedia, Hurricane Katrina

(CHORUS)

Michael Jackson, Avatar, Large Hadron Collider
H1N1, Sully on the Hudson
Mars Curiosity, Europe gets some record heat
Arab Spring, Bin Laden, Flash Crash, Horizon
Bitcoin, iPhone, exoplanets, Eurozone
Obama, WikiLeaks, Occupy Wall St.

(CHORUS)

Sandy Hook, Michael Brown, Baumgartner faster than sound
Water crisis down in Flint, Donald Trump is president
Higgs Boson, CharlieHebdo, Martian liquid H20
Putin, Snowden, Zika virus, Cubs win
ISIS, Brexit, Harambe, Queen’s Diamond Jubilee
Ebola, eclipse, Vegas shooting, Space X
Record-breaking hurricanes, government shutdown again
Anti-vaxxers, climate change, the whole world has gone insane

(CHORUS)

OH SHIT I’M THIRTY

Today was a garbage bag of a day, but LET’S NOT FOCUS ON THAT, shall we?

I turned 30 years old today, which is pretty wild. Never thought I’d make it. I certainly don’t feel 30…I feel like I’m in my early 20s physically (except for the damn legs) and probably in my mid-20s mentally. Though I still sometimes start my age with a “1” when entering into form fields, which is kinda weird.

Anyway.

I also realized that I have my entire 20s logged in this blog, which is pretty badass. My 20s were pretty eventful.

Then again, I bet most peoples’ 20s are.

Whatev.

Here’s to being old and useless, I guess.

Election!

YAY, Nenshi got elected as Mayor again. Badass.

I was worried Calgary would pull a “U.S. Voters” move on themselves and have more people voting for Nenshi’s opponent than the polls had suggested, but that wasn’t the case.

Too bad I couldn’t have voted.