Saturday, February 06, 2010

Harrison is new to Awana, Pretz is good, and Kenny is NOT a bullshitter!

Henry said he had a good week when he picked me up - I'd say so, if he got a job taking care of kids around Vancouver! I interacted with Conor, Harrison and his parents (who are named Alex and Eva - he's new, and remembers who I am), Chrystal, Golden, Auntie Rebecca, Auntie Vivian (who's going to Hong Kong to celebrate Chinese New Year), Annika, Margaret, and others. Learned that Harrison's birthday is in two weeks, so did get out a card for him! On the way home, the kids were eating Pretz (so good!) and singing nonsense - Ada told us about India and the cows and temples.

Teresa tried to call me, but got me on YM instead - no, I don't have any plastic Christmas Sherlock Holmes hats for tomorrow morning! She'd sent Henry to the dollar stores, but of course the malls were all closed after Awana. Apparently, she couldn't leave the house herself since her daughter Gwyneth had a play date. Then I talked to Kenny about Hien and some person calling him a bullshitter - yikes! (Taiwan / martial arts / Shaolin monks...)

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Dream: Rollercoaster rides on cruise ships / Angel or devil

I had a weird dream which involved me and a good male friend getting on a cruise ship where my mom and a bunch of other people were. He protected me from my mom while everyone went on a rollercoaster ride in our boats. During the ride, we passed another boat full of passengers (including Ian L.) - they sang BINGO to us, and we had to sing it back. We went to a place which resembled Disneyland, and then had to place our orders for food. I was so much in awe of the silver claws coming down from the ceiling which held menus! Unfortunately, we only had fifteen seconds to say what our meal choice was for lunch... my friend wanted me to order a ten-course meal, but I couldn't say anything. As the claw moved on to the next person, I was disappointed... and even more so when we rounded the corner later, and saw a LOT of waiters and waitresses carrying out PLATES of food - this also included sundaes and other desserts. But this Chinese waitress stopped by our row and said I could have some leftover roast beef and other items - SO KIND!

Later, we went to our own areas of the ship. My friend was with me, being LOYAL. He said I could have a shower first, so I did that while he talked to other people. In the shower, I noticed something going on outside the curtain. When I was absolutely certain nobody could see me, I peeked out - it turned out to be Jen talking to some white guy named Paul about her jobs on the ship. After the shower, I called my friend in while I talked to the same guy. He had binders and documentation GALORE! The dream ended there for some reason. Not sure why I had it, either.

Apparently, my mom emailed us again about MORE family dinners, this time for Chinese New Year and such. Steph pointed out that Harmony's birthday is at the end of March, and so she might want to celebrate with her own family. (Mom wouldn't think of that... if I were Harmony, I sure would want to celebrate with my own family!) So... Steph's birthday, Grandma's birthday, and Chinese New Year? At least the last one seems optional - I'll see if I can get some rescue going on too. Mom said she'd "put the call back to Harma and Jon" - HAHAHAHA, that doesn't really make sense! Seems she needs an editor for her emails, but we all knew that already anyhow. ;)

Cindy emailed us again - she's bringing pasta next week, and has a list of the small group birthdays. Well, all except MINE - and I'm the most important, haha. (not really) Man, Dylan better get on the whole Fellowship list (excluding Mr. Creep) soon, since I've only been bugging him about it for the past FEW MONTHS! :P

Vicky - Sept. 20
Eric - Sept. 5
Vanessa - Nov. 8
Carmen - Aug. 21
Kevin - Aug. 25
Cindy - Aug. 18
Deb - Dec. 15
David - Dec. 30
Dylan - Feb. 5
Steph - Feb. 16
Johnny - Mar. 23
Danielle - May 5

You Are an Angel

You are a good person, even if you are a tad devilish from time to time. You do your best to do the right thing.

You may be an angel, but you're not a goody-goody. You just don't want to cross any moral lines.

You treat other people well, even if they don't want to treat you well in return.

Pat yourself on the back for being such an ethical person. There should be more people like you in the world!

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Malva, Matilda, Medusa, and Mirage

Damn it! This thing restarted LITERALLY when I was about to go to bed! Seriously, I was turning the lights off and everything! UGH!

This is from What Not to Name Your Baby by Joe Borgenicht.


Maddeysen: A variation on the surname of our nation's fourth president, scion of a notable Virginia family. Sometimes striving to be different is just plain wrong.

Madge: A woman who frequently exclaims, "You're soaking in it!" with little additional esxplanation. Also, British tabloid, meaning "Madonna."

Magalita: Popular rum-based cocktail. Also, a mini-flashlight. Also, a stiff Mexican beverage plus the worm, minus the lime.

Mage: A powerful, if incredibly geeky, player of the game Dungeons & Dragons who wields the power of magic! Or so they say.

Magpie: A black-and-white cowbird attracted by shiny objects and dead animals on the side of the road.

Maia: Greek spring goddess. Also, Italian-American possessive, used by little Italian toddlers.

Malva: Greek, meaning "soft." Perilously close to Seinfeld's Mulva.

Marquessa: Host island of a reality show designed to see how long contestants can be stranded on an island and forced to vote one another off the show without going insane.

Marveline: Maker of fine motor oil that declared bankruptcy after failing to secure the lucrative NASCAR audience.

Mary: Gentiles only, please.

Mary Jane: Evokes wonderful memories of patent leather shoes, penny candies, and Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon.

Matilda: A rotund Australian woman descended from hearty penal-colony stock.

Mauvia: Though attractive, Mauvia always had a somewhat unhealthy hue to her complexion.

Meadow: A lovely, verdant field. Also the daughter of a psychopathic but strangely endearing television mob capo.

Mecca: Birthplace of Mohammed, and site of annual pilgrimage made by many famous boxers.

Medhina: Both funky and cold.

Medusa: A woman so terrifyingly ugly that one look at her would turn a man to stone. Have fun listening to her cry herself to sleep after four years of high school, and no boy has had the guts to ask her out.

Melga: A thick, persistent phlegm that often accompanies a bronchial infection.

Mercedes: High-end luxury automobile or Spanish dancer.

Mia: A very selfish Italian girl.

Mikelle: Is it Mike? Michelle? Exception to the rule: If one of you wanted a boy and the other one a girl, this compromise may be the only way to save your marriage.

Mirage: An optical illusion promising water in a desert. Also, a casino in Las Vegas.

Misty: Foggy, cloudy, and unclear. Also, on the verge of crying. "Every time I watch Beaches, I get all Misty."

Modesty: Quality of being humble, Also, a feminine hygiene product.

Monica: A cigar-smoking intern made irresistible by a blue dress.

Morgan: Unbelievable wife of a Saturday-night character.

Morona: Feminine form of Moron.

Mowicha: A sandwich made from lawn clippings.

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Went to Oakridge tonight to see if I could find sweatpants at Zellers, even though I called ahead. Didn't find anything - I did find inexpensive tops which weren't "me" because they had a slight neck exposure. I don't like that personally (although they were warm) because I'd have to work at not looking "scandalous," heh. Ate some Sliders at White Spot - yup, never again. I did get ketchup / barbecue / regular / sour cream and onion rings and chips at Zellers since I had a craving earlier - only $4 for the four bags!

No sweatpants at the Gap (although they had yoga leggings) or the Bay - I swear, I'm contemplating going to Metrotown on Sunday after I call the various stores tomorrow to VERIFY that they have them! Or I'll Google "half-length sweatpants" first... ugh. And of course Eric JUST sent me an email saying that a certain person WAS there, and that I missed out. WHATEVER! Saw these three cute kids on the Canada Line going home (I just managed to catch the train!) - talked to them for a bit; 8, 6, and about 1. After I got off the train, I saw two midgets trying to power-walk their way to the station, haha. Cindy sent me an email saying that next week's "small group outing" is a potluck at church - I guess that saves money, although you'd still have to buy the items. Suppose I'm in, or else Eric will tease me again, yikes! Deb says something about movies, and borrowing games from Phil - I don't know about THAT part of it, but we'll see.

Trivia fact for Saturday, Feb. 6: How many volcanoes formed Hawaii, the Big Island of the Hawaiian chain? Five - Mauna Loa, Mauna Kea, Kilauea, Hualalai, and Kohala.

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Friday, February 05, 2010

My staying home has NOTHING to do with him! It's the LAUNDRY!

Eric called to see if I could make it out to the usual spot by 5:45 - don't think so, as my laundry will still be in the dryer and such by then! Maybe if it were a little LATER - stupid worship practice! Then he emailed me to say "Call Ivan! YES!" about 100 times... nah, I think it's more relaxing to stay home, especially after yesterday! (and I still haven't called Oakridge or Metrotown!)

It's true that I have those Chewy Chips Ahoy for Amy, but that can wait till Sunday or even next Friday. Good thing Sonya intimated that their group's talks about sexuality would be at church for the next four weeks, haha. Then Eric emailed me again, implying that I wanted to stay home because I heard that a certain person wasn't going to be there - AS IF! My laundry has nothing to do with the man at ALL!

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Dream about Metallica's UNTIL IT SLEEPS, luggage, and impossible situations

All I remember of my dream is that it had impossible situations, Metallica's Until It Sleeps, and my dad getting annoyed because I wouldn't help with their luggage when I had some of my own. Too bad, since it's not going to happen in real life either. They seem to forget that commuting will be hell, so I won't do it. Of course, this only happens to me because "I'm not important." What the hell ever! Also, I dislike Facebook's new layout change - it looks too cluttered! I'll do my laundry too, with my new purchases. :D

You Are Mysterious

You are a puzzling person to both strangers and friends. Often, your actions seem to contradict each other.

You don't mind being complex, though it isn't something you necessarily strive for. You just are complicated.

You follow your heart, and oftentimes, your heart is divided. You don't tend to act consistently.

You believe that people can change, and you're good with that. You certainly change weekly - if not daily!

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Lougheed Mall and Walmart are both complicated to get to! / Sherlock Holmes

Called Auntie Ying after I took a shower and ate a banana - when she heard about my wasted time, she said that there was a Sears outlet near Lougheed Mall, where I never go since it's too far. Corey and Teunis have both suggested Wal-Mart, so I could go there, depending on location... then again, they all look just as complicated to get to! She said that we could have lunch on her day off too, and wondered if I trusted her. We'll see what happens! Auntie Ying mentioned having lunch with Auntie Susan, who still does have grieving to do, and who shared her concern about her daughter Karen Grace. I'm sure SHE has grieving to do as well, man! (her father died last summer) We also talked about star stickers, juice substituting for wine in the "water into wine" story, and some other things. Not too bad, I guess. I can always say stuff about Valentine's Day cards and such next week - in fact, I just wrote a reminder to myself.

Edit: Hey, I can go crazy with the tags, and LJ won't add the ones that don't exist while adding everything else! Sweet! Much better than not adding them in at all. :D

Trivia fact for Friday, Feb. 5: According to author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, what did Sherlock Holmes keep near his fireplace in the toe end of a Persian slipper? His pipe tobacco.

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Thursday, February 04, 2010

Clothing manufacturers: NOT EVERYONE HAS LONG LEGS!

I just wasted six hours at two malls trying to find a decent pair of sweatpants... it's not MY fault I'm short, is it?! I was able to find some more underwear at Sears in Richmond Centre just fine, found two on-sale sweatshirts, and eventually found a pair of new wine-colored flats (trying to be bold) to replace the Ronson ones that I have. The laces in the Ronson ones are annoying! For some reason, I wanted to try on some boots - I don't think boots and I get along!

Then I went into too many stores to count (including the Gap / Old Navy / the Bay / American Eagle / Roots [NOT paying $50 for one pair!] / Laura, which played too much hip-hop) - came up DRY. So then I went to Lansdowne, where their clothing stores and Zellers didn't have what I was looking for either. Went to Winners, where I noticed an ad for How To Look Good Naked Canada in the fitting room... haha, I'll pass! Clothing manufacturers need to remember that not EVERYONE has long legs! UGH... I was really thirsty when I got home, too, but have since remedied that. Tomorrow, I think I'll CALL various clothing stores in Oakridge or Metrotown before actually going out - I could save time that way. Also found out that Brandi unfriended me on Facebook, but no big deal.

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STUPID KNOCKING! / Intensity / Boring_People tagging with Semagic / Storms

MORE knocking at the window or something today - GO AWAY! As a result, all I remember of my dreams is watching two intense shows back-to-back with my brother, while trying to get our mom out of the house. Hahaha! I may go shopping for new clothes - not sure... but I will definitely use Semagic to tag my boring_people entries!

You Are a Hurricane

You are downright deadly. No one would ever try to mess with you.

You are feared and rightly so. Once you get on the warpath, there's no stopping you.

People know to get out of your way as soon as they can. You only pick up momentum as you progress.

You may calm down temporarily, but you always get a second wind. You're one storm that takes a while to pass.


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Soy sauce chicken, BBQ pork, CHEAP Pho, and Sylvester Stallone

The Committee Meeting tonight just annoyed me - I'd rather have been at home catching up on LJ. Jen said that she might be going on some trip for six months: YOU DON'T DO THAT WHEN YOU'VE COMMITTED TO SOMETHING FOR A YEAR! Johnny, Jen, Pastor John, Dylan, Kevin, and Eric wasted spent a lot of time discussing the stupid fundraiser and Stanford's quality standards: rice, noodles, BBQ pork, soy sauce chicken, and more. If we're moving the AGM to the 19th, it gives people more time to prepare for the fundraiser. I've already said I'm NOT helping, so hopefully I remember to bring a book that night!

Discussed the Olympics, talks, LOST, Pho, takeout, and such - I saw Auntie Cynthia and Julie at the Pho place! The 20% off everything makes things CHEAP, even cheaper than our fundraiser! (but it IS to raise funds, too) Got home to find out that Uncle Arthur / Danielle L. / Pat K. had unfriended me from Facebook (oh well!), and then got an email saying that the fundraiser is too complicated - YOU KNOW DAMN RIGHT! People! Oh, and now I got another email from Stanford - he's talked to Dylan for half an hour, and supposedly has planned everything. I secretly hoped it was not to be. DAMN YOU! I don't know WHY he wants this fundraiser so badly...

Trivia fact for Thursday, Feb. 4: How many years after his Oscar-winning film debut as Rocky did Sylvester Stallone appear in the fifth sequel, Rocky Balboa? Thirty. Rocky was released in 1976; Rocky Balboa in 2006.

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Wednesday, February 03, 2010

2009 Guestbook Entries

Mar. 21, 2009 (Saturday)

Andrea: "Can't believe it's been five months since I last signed your book. Good that we can hang out today [at Cimona's] - I'm excited! Thanks for being you, Les! Hope the mouse issue goes away soon!"

May 7, 2009 (Thursday)

Andrea: "I feel a bit grey today because of the rainy weather, but it's definitely great to see you! Hope you find a nice new place soon!"

June 22-24, 2009 (Monday to Wednesday)

Terrence ("Dr. Poo"): "Thank you SO much for putting me up the past two days, and all the company too. The pancake hangout at IHOP was super, and the shopping for gum and hair stuff at London Drugs and Shoppers Drug Mart was fun. Too bad they forgot my bubbles at bubble tea [Pearl Castle], but the waitress was nice about it. (too nice, for the matter of fact)

Anyways, I am thankful for God's providence through you. May you continue to pursuit in a purpose-driven life, knowing that you are very blessing (oops) blessed with an abundance of knowledge. I hope that you will be able to use it to touch life and lives of many others - including myself! Don't let other people change you, but be changed to be more and more like Him.

I can't wait to be back again, and hey... come by someday to the sunny island of Singapore! God bless you, sister Leslie." (he drew a smiley face and a little flower!)

July 7, 2009 (Tuesday)

Eric H.: "Just had a FANTASTIC dinner hangout [at California Café in Lansdowne] with Leslie and Nate before I head back to Hong Kong. It was nice to chat with the two of them as I share my NEW dating strategies on this DOCTOR chick I met and want to date. I hope I will be successful, as she is very nice with kids from what I observe. Keep you posted... BYE for now! E.H."

August 10, 2009 (Monday)

Billie: "mrgrim / murse! Second Sleepover! YAY! Richmond Sushi, Richmond Centre, rant sessions, books, bad dates, all that good stuff. Always fun with Leslie. ^_^ Let's hang out loads more, eh?" (her "dot" on the question mark was a really bad maple leaf, and she drew a bottle of milk and a cat - "free kitty! MEOW!")

September 17, 2009 (Thursday)

Billie: "MUAHAHAHAHAHAHAAA! I'm back for the party! This'll be fun! Let's all fly like Eagles! ;) *snicker* "

September 17-21, 2009 (Thursday to Monday)

Teunis: "Thank you for your charity, and for being a good friend. May the community you're part of continue to be good, and may fortune favor you well. You are good company, and an excellent person!"

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Scott McIntyre / I am a lava lamp!

DAMMIT! This thing restarted right when I was going to check Eric's email about a ride tonight! I finally just called him - the usual place at 6:20 sounds like it should be doable. When he mentioned Pho as a possible (takeout) dinner, I said that they had an Olympics special where everything was 20% off. Scott McIntyre added me on Facebook - sweet, haha. Got up shortly after 4, no thanks to stupid knocking at my door / window at 1:30, an attempted phone call at 2:25 (good thing I have my phone off), or LOUD emergency vehicles passing by my window at 4!

You Are a Lava Lamp

You are dreamy, relaxed, and contemplative. You like to get lost inside your own head.

You never know where your thoughts will take you, and you consider reflection to be a wild ride.

You're happy to sit and be alone for long periods of time. You only do well with others who are like-minded.

You appreciate other peaceful, creative types. Great things can come when great minds get together.

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Cadbury creme eggs and candy conversation hearts / Prime ministers

Went to London Drugs, and found the Cadbury mini-eggs (three) and Cadbury creme eggs (seven) as I knew I would. Since there were Caramilk eggs as well, I decided to get a couple along with two bubble-wrap envelopes. Since I figured the kids deserve more than a few candy conversation hearts in their Ziploc bags, I bought two more 99¢ packages. Saw Simon's Maple Fudge, and some Country Choice organic Double Fudge cookies - couldn't resist them! I seemingly couldn't find Mr. Big chocolate bars anywhere in London Drugs, so went to Save-On Foods in the hope that they'd have them.

After ten minutes of looking for them, I finally found a bunch by a checkout - selected eight of those, since I'm going to give six to Corey for his birthday. Then I decided to get five bananas, and some chicken pot pies and beef pot pies. At home, I had to eat one of the beef pot pies pretty much immediately since its packaging was open somehow. Divided everything up into Ziploc bags or a storage box before taking a shower, too.

Trivia fact for Wednesday, Feb. 3: What country's capital was named for a British prime minister? New Zealand's. The city of Wellington was named after the first duke of Wellington, Arthur Wellesley, in 1840. It became the capital in 1865. Wellington defeated Napoleon at Waterloo and served as British prime minister from 1828 to 1830.

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Tuesday, February 02, 2010

R.I.P., Geoff Lloyd / Dream of shredded rice / No fundraiser! / Diner personality

This thing just restarted! Oh sure, do it RIGHT when I'm going to check the transit times!

Matthew Good Band co-founder and former bassist Geoff Lloyd passed away this weekend. The cause of his death has not been publicly announced, though a Facebook posting states he had been "fighting his inner demons for a number of years, and they finally got the better of him."

Lloyd served as bassist for the Vancouver, BC-based Matthew Good Band from 1995 to 1999, during which the band released both their debut, Last of the Ghetto Astronauts, and their hit follow-up, Underdogs. In more recent years, he fronted his own band, the Slipjacks, and was instrumental in re-opening the now-defunct Vancouver punk venue the Cobalt in 2006.

Matthew Good posted his own tribute on his website yesterday (January 31). Here it is in full:

I really don't know what to say right now. Having just found out that Geoff has passed, I'm still in a state of shock.

Geoff was one of the founding members of the Matthew Good Band, and, as far as I'm concerned, it was never quite the same without him.

I remember a lot of things when I think of Geoff. Like me, he suffered from extreme mood swings and depression, something that he struggled with throughout his life. But, to be honest, most of the time, I just remember how funny and utterly selfless he was. There are a million stories, a million memories, and threading them together, thousands of miles travelled. I wouldn't change any of it for the world, and am honoured to have not only played with him, but to have had him be a part of my life.

On behalf of my entire family, I would like to extend my deepest sympathies to Geoff's wife and the Lloyd family.

For those of you in Vancouver, a fundraiser for Geoff's widow is being held Sunday, February 7, 2010 at The Astoria.

I had a weird dream that involved shredded chicken, my mom's shredded rice, wanting to hold hands with someone, having that someone spontaneously hold my hand, and going to colorful stalls. Not sure I want to know, haha.

YAY! I just remembered that I probably CAN'T help out with the Fellowship fundraiser ANYWAY! I have Awana on Saturday afternoons, and have to teach toddler Sunday School on Sunday mornings! Of course, I refuse to skip service to help out with the thing. I don't even care if Eric calls me out on it in the weeks to come, because "having fairly busy weekends" (which I said in the email to everyone - NO REGRETS!) IS a good excuse for me. I'm not even going to buy noodles and such from there on the day of the fundraiser, unless it's bought for me. Jen just sent the Fellowship an email referring to everyone as "brothers and sisters" - while this has Biblical basis and isn't nearly as bad as Karen Choo's emails back in the day ("inner beauty - BRING IT! ARE YOU HOT ENOUGH!"), I would rather NOT be reminded of this. Yeah, I'm in one of THOSE moods!

You Are French Toast

You are a bit of a rule breaker and a rebel. You always do things your own way.

You're the type of person to order breakfast for dinner - and dinner for breakfast!

You have a quirky twist on everything you do. You are very creative and original.

You get a kick out of trying out new restaurants, and old-school diners are at the top of your list.

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Stupid fundraisers! / Mr. Big bars / Head tag change / Stethoscopes

Kevin forwarded me some email from Stanford about some Fellowship fundraiser. Jon is helping, and so is Dylan - and of course, they're going to make their wives help out as well. Gee, just ASK Deb and Harmony first! I know I'd be pissed off if made to help out... and I'm not inclined to help anyway because two perfidious blackguards are the other helpers. I want nothing to do with this enterprise. Petty, but that's what I do when certain people think I'm OBSESSED with them OR need help. The very nerve.

I asked Corey whether I'd sent him any Mr. Big bars last year, since a post reminded me of their existence. He took that the wrong way, and said that he wasn't into Mr. Big Balls - cheh! Once I checked my recap, I saw that I hadn't; guess he's getting a few for his birthday! Tomorrow, I'll go to London Drugs or Shoppers Drug Mart for sure.

To change the userinfo head tag thing: jillicons and Rosequoll (courtesy of ghost_light... thanks!)

Trivia fact for Tuesday, Feb. 2: How did necessity result in the invention of the stethoscope? French physician René-Théophile-Hyacinthe Laennec felt it was inappropriate for him to check the heartbeat of a young female patient by placing his ear against her chest. So he made a cylinder out of paper, and placed one end to her chest and one to his ear. He was amazed to find that the sound of her heartbeat was louder and clearer than it would have been had he pressed his ear directly to her chest.

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Monday, February 01, 2010

Dana is issuing instructions to her creepy ex-boyfriend?! NO!!!!

Jack finally gets to where Renee was, and starts screaming at Bubba over the phone. Luckily, the Russians can't hear him, so I guess we can add the ability to speak loudly and stay clandestine to Jack's laundry list of superpowers. Jack still wants to pull her out and promises to make Vladimir talk, but Bubba says they don't do that anymore. I thought that was exactly what CTU did. Meanwhile, Dana is suddenly back at CTU. She must have used the same wormhole that Jack used earlier to get to Queens from Manhattan in 5 minutes.

Bubba tells her to do something, but she immediately disregards it, and starts to look for a way to help her sleazy ex-boyfriend. She tells Kevin about a $120,000 drug stash at the NYPD warehouse, and that seems to make him happy. She tells Kevin she'll walk him through the security, because let's face it, her ass is more important than these nuclear weapons. Also, Arlo is still trying to get in her pants, and I have to say that Kevin is looking better and better.

The Russians take Renee back to their warehouse (apparently, they also used the wormhole). Renee tells Vladimir about her buyer, who wants weapons grade uranium. Vlad plays dumb, but Renee tells him it's no use. She's already seen the ad on Craigslist. Vlad is clearly still hung up on her, though, and gets jealous when she says that she's been with Jack for 2 years. She maintains that it's strictly professional, but we all know better.

Sark and his dying brother are with the doctor, and Sark is playing armchair doctor. The doctor tells Sark that his brother needs major surgery and a bone marrow transplant, but Sark doesn't accept that. Sark then gets a call from his dad, who's upset that Sark ignored the last two calls. So, he uses the tunnel excuse, and that he's stuck in traffic. Good to see that some things are universal, even excuses. I wonder if his dog also ate his homework. Sark threatens the doctor with a gun, and so the doctor has to make excuses to his nurse. The doctor tells him that the surgery will require six men, and even then, it's a little doubtful that he'll live.

Here's Cole, and he wants to do things his way. Plus, he's serious, as we can tell from the constipated look on his face. Vlad starts coming onto to Renee and sweet-talks her, as you can almost feel Jack's blood starting to boil. Renee tries to buy time and asks to take a shower, to which Vlad happily agrees. I'm thinking Vlad's got a camera in there or something. Vlad is going to doublecross Jack, and tells his henchman to kill him once he gets the money. Vlad thinks Renee will be cool with that, and this guy is seriously high on himself.

President Taylor is still upset about Hassan's crackdown, which he apparently ordered off camera in the last episode. Maybe he did it during the 5 minutes it took him to get from CTU to the UN. Meanwhile, Hassan gets a file and wants someone arrested who is connected to that general from the previous episode. I'll be honest. I really don't give a crap about this. I mean, it's obvious that this general is the one behind the plot to kill Hassan and procure nuclear weapons. Which, of course, means that he is not.

Dana creates an NYPD card, and Arlo gives her lip. Arlo then goes to Chloe and asks why Dana is being all weird because, let's face it, she should be putty in Arlo's hands. Chloe puts him in his place, basically calling Arlo a sleazebag who clearly wants to get into Dana's pants. Chloe then makes a great crack about how Arlo was going to stare at her ass as she walks away, and sure enough, he does. Good to see that the show's habit of making computer analysts look like horny, awkward dorks while making the field agents cool, good-looking alpha males is in place. Exhibit A: Edgar Stiles.

Dana gives Kevin his instructions, and makes him promise not to bother her again. Yeah, I'm sure that will take. We then find out that Arlo's been spying on her, and that's hardly a surprise. That's what computer geeks are good for, right? And the moment we've been waiting for: Renee gets out of the shower, and she's in her birthday suit. Of course, Vlad is waiting for her, and he tries to use his charms on her. Renee won't do it, and Vlad threatens to call off the deal. Vlad goes over and starts moving in on her, and Renee's look of sadness and disgust is heartbreaking. Jack tries to tell Renee not to do it, but Renee tells him it must be done. She takes the earpiece out and washes it down the sink so that Jack won't be able to listen in on what's about to happen. Now I'm sad...

Hassan's assistant corners the Kamistan UN ambassador and takes him into custody. His assistant then calls the President's daughter, and it looks like they're up to something. Probably sleeping together. The doctor warns Sark that radiation poisoning is transferable by bodily fluids, and looks at Sark questioningly. What? He thinks Sark is going to have sex with his brother or something? Not even Sark is that weird. At least we hope not. Anyway, of course, Sark's father has tracked them down and his men come in and kill the doctor. They take them both away, and there goes the poor guy's chance at getting healthy. I guess his dad didn't want to pay for the hospital bill. Man, health care costs are really out of control in this country.

Jack's got his glasses on, and he's arrived at the buy. Jack speaks German, and Vlad's henchman points out that he seems to speak with an American accent. Just like Tom Cruise in Valkyrie. They proceed to insult each other in German before converting to English. I guess they're both still pissed off about World War II. Anyway, Jack demands to speak with Vlad, and he's in bed with Renee. I'd make a crack about how Vlad didn't last too long, but I'm too heartbroken.

Renee uses her charms to convince Vlad not to go through with the double-cross. Vlad won't do it, though, and Renee tries to call Jack to warn him. Vlad then throws her down and chokes her, telling her not to go against him. Man, this show is really turning up the violence against women this season, aren't they? Jack transfers the money, and before the Russians can kill him, Cole takes them out with a sniper's rifle. Jack then calls Vlad and insults him, calling him small time. Renee can certainly agree with that.

Sark and his brother are back with dear old dad. He's upset, and beats down Sark for disobeying him. He says to never endanger the family, which is ironic considering that he's willing to let his one son die of radiation poisoning, and is beating the crap out of his other son. He's really upset about Sark choosing a doctor out of his network, and decides to do something about it. So, he shoots his already-dying son dead, and then tells Sark to get back to work. Well, that's one way to cut the Gordian knot.

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David L. uses too much Netspeak! / Zombies / Beer / Japanese smileys

Been doing a lot of Facebook note editing today, and figured that I should unfriend / block David Littlefair because he uses way too much Netspeak for my tastes. I've already hidden him from my feed, but I went WHOLE HOG! Good thing I had time to do it - no stress!

From Sarah Rowlett: Please put this on your status if you know someone (or are related to someone) who has succumbed to zombies. My wish for 2010 is that people will understand that being overcome by zombies is not something to be ashamed of. Zombies are nearly unstoppable and are truly terrifying. 93% won't copy and paste this. They have been killed by zombies.

You Are Beer

You are very relaxed and casual. You're happy to have a drink with friends, and you're not too picky about what that drink is.

You are definitely not a snob, and it drives you crazy when people get too fancy about whatever you're drinking.

You drink to let loose and have fun. You are the furthest thing in the world from uptight.

If someone hands you a drink, you'll drink it. You'll toast often and to anything!

You Are a "Wink"

You are brilliant, and everyone knows it, thanks to your wordplay.

You are funny and amusing... and sometimes downright naughty.

You'd never want to hurt anyone with your words. All your teasing is in good fun.

You can dish it out, but you can also take it. You enjoy witty repartee.

I did this one before, but the picture in that result is now just the ALT TEXT. (John Kerry!)

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YOUR explanations / Apostrophes / Charles Lindbergh kidnapping reward

HAHAHAHA.... I love this great image from the comments on that "bad grammar and spelling" article!

Edit an hour later: Here's another one!

Trivia fact for Monday, Feb. 1: What notorious criminal offered a $10,000 reward - from jail - for information leading to the safe recovery of aviator Charles Lindbergh's kidnapped son? Gangster Al Capone. Lindbergh's son, Charles Jr., was 20 months old when he was kidnapped in March 1932. His body was found 10 weeks later.

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Sunday, January 31, 2010

Cellphone texting and social networking is leading to language decline!

Since this thing just restarted, I'll give you the full text of this article:

Oh No They Didn't article on bad spelling and grammar... I'm only just now getting around to reading it.

Toronto — Little or no grammar teaching, cellphone texting, social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter... all are being blamed for an increasingly unacceptable number of post-secondary students who can't write properly.

For years, there's been a flood of anecdotal complaints from professors about what they say is the wretched state of English grammar coming from some of their students. Now, there seems to be some solid evidence. Ontario's Waterloo University is one of the few post-secondary institutions in Canada to require the students they accept to pass an exam testing their English language skills. Almost a third of those students are failing.

"Thirty per cent of students who are admitted are not able to pass at a minimum level," says Ann Barrett, managing director of the English language proficiency exam at Waterloo University. "We would certainly like it to be a lot lower."

Barrett says the failure rate has jumped five percentage points in the past few years, up to 30 per cent from 25 per cent. "What has happened in high school that they cannot pass our simple test of written English, at a minimum?" she asks. Even those with good marks out of Grade 12, so-called elite students, "still can't pass our simple test," she says. Poor grammar is the major reason students fail, says Barrett. "If a student has problems with articles, prepositions, verb tenses, that's a problem."

Some students in public schools are no longer being taught grammar, she believes. "Are they (really) preparing students for university studies?" At Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, one in 10 new students are not qualified to take the mandatory writing courses required for graduation. That 10 per cent must take so-called "foundational" writing courses first. Simon Fraser is reviewing its entrance requirements for English language.

"There has been this general sense in the last two or three years that we are finding more students are struggling in terms of language proficiency," says Rummana Khan Hemani, the university's director of academic advising. Emoticons, happy faces, sad faces, cuz, are just some of the writing horrors being handed in, say professors and administrators at Simon Fraser.

"Little happy faces ... or a sad face ... little abbreviations," show up even in letters of academic appeal, says Khan Hemani. "Instead of 'because,' it's 'cuz.' That's one I see fairly frequently," she says, and these are new in the past five years. Khan Hemani sends appeal submissions with emoticons in them back to students to be re-written "because a committee will immediately get their backs up when they see that kind of written style."

Professors are seeing their share of bad grammar in essays as well. "The words 'a lot' have become one word, for everyone, as far as I can tell. 'Definitely' is always spelled with an 'a' -- 'definitely.' I don't know why," says Paul Budra, an English professor and associate dean of arts and science at Simon Fraser. "Punctuation errors are huge, and apostrophe errors. Students seem to have absolutely no idea what an apostrophe is for. None. Absolutely none."

He is floored by some of what he sees. "I get their essays and I go 'You obviously don't know what a sentence fragment is. You think commas are sort of like Parmesan cheese that you sprinkle on your words'," said Budra. Then he's reduced to teaching basic grammar to them himself. He says this has been going on now for the 20 years he's taught college and university in B.C. and Ontario -- only the mistakes have changed. He too blames poor -- or no -- grammar instruction in lower schools.

"When I went to high school in the '70s, I was never taught grammar in English. I learned grammar from Latin classes." Budra was taught to read and write using whole language rather than phonetics - not a good way to go, in his books. "We haven't taught grammar for 30-40 years...(and it) hasn't worked. It's not that hard to teach basic grammar," he says. Ontario's Ministry of Education says grammar is a part of both its elementary and high school curriculum.

Cellphone texting and social networking on Internet sites are degrading writing skills, say even experts in the field. "I think it has," says Joel Postman, author of "SocialCorp: Social Media Goes Corporate," who has taught Fortune 500 companies how to use social networking. The Internet norm of ignoring punctuation and capitalization as well as using emoticons may be acceptable in an email to friends and family, but it can have a deadly effect on one's career if used at work.

"It would say to me ... 'well, this person doesn't think very clearly, and they're not very good at analyzing complex subjects, and they're not very good at expressing themselves, or at worse, they can't spell, they can't punctuate,' " he says. "These folks are going to short-change themselves, and right or wrong, they're looked down upon in traditional corporations," notes Postman.

But "spelling is getting better because of Spellcheck," says Margaret Proctor, University of Toronto writing support co-ordinator. James Turk of the Association of University Teachers takes all the complaints about student literacy with a grain of salt. "There's a notion of a golden age in the past that students were wonderful, unlike now. I'm not sure that golden age ever existed," he says. "You can go back and read Plato and see Socrates talking about the allegations that this generation isn't as not as good as previous ones," he notes.

Yes, I'm a spelling / grammar Nazi. Don't say that it's just the Internet, and thus it is acceptable to suddenly forget everything you learned in English. It is sad and pathetic how many people I see on Facebook misspelling or misusing simple words. (that was taken - and slightly modified - from the OP commentary, but I feel the same way - I feel like correcting these people on Facebook, but won't)

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Bags, purses, Farrah, Valentine's Day hearts, Easter, LAYERS, and more / January 2010 BBT Tally

Went out late this afternoon to look at bags and purses on clearance at the Bay, not for any real reason. They were almost $50 even on clearance (at least for separate compartments), so I decided that it was a good thing I wasn't actually looking for one. Then I looked for shoes, a bit more seriously; I saw one style which caught my eye, since it was named "FARRAH." I concluded that Dockers were only for men, and I saw $45 fuzzy support slipper pairs - I couldn't find the perfect pair of flats, unfortunately. Maybe tomorrow at Sears or Zellers, even...

When the mall was due to close, I went to London Drugs to see if I could get stuff for Amos / Amanda / Sean L. / Sean S. / Ian / Margaret / Hannah S. / Conor / Harrison / David / Evelyn / Esther / Rachel. I found a value-pack of Valentine's Day cards, perfect for kids! Then I selected stickers to go with the cards, Hot Wings chips by Ruffles, two new flavors of Trident gum in LAYERS (Green Apple / Golden Pineapple, and Wild Strawberry / Citrus), two packages of chocolate hearts, one package of candy conversation hearts for 99 cents, and some Easter Cadbury mini-eggs because I'm thinking ahead. Also got Minute Rice (still on sale!), a pair of scissors for the bathroom (don't ask), some Chewy Chips Ahoy in the RED bag for Amy (she was talking about wanting some soft chewy cookies recently), and some Hershey's Kisses with cherry cordial filling for myself.

Went to Save-On Foods because I wanted a different journal than the one I already have with ripped pages. Found a Peeps journal, and then got some butter to replace my margarine. Then I really wanted to go to the bathroom, so I quickly picked up some Skinny Cow popsicles before checking out. (there are 14 to a box, and only 50 calories each!) The only thing was that I forgot about bananas, but maybe later. Then I had to wait for 20 minutes for the bus... finally got home to relief, and then divided the candy and cards into Ziploc bags. Now I'm listening to a radio show about how there's no cabin B13 - this girl is insisting that her husband actually exists! Oh my! The ship's doctor insists that the man is murdered because of the large sum of money he was carrying, and the cabin has been changed. Now the woman's husband is CALLING her! And now he's been outed as a murderer!


blueberry @ Tazza (Monday, January 25)

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Discipline / Bad grammar in UNIVERSITY

Had a bad ride to church in the morning! While I was talking to Harmony, I saw Mom come in and attempt to hand off three bags of stuff to Jon, while he was BUSY trying to get the worship stuff done! Gee, why not hand it off to Harmony?! Mr. Creep got even LESS of my respect (if that's even possible) because he tried talking to Jon while he was about to do a pre-service PRAYER with the worship team! Of course, being Jon, he talked to him for a couple of minutes. *sigh* (I shook hands with Randal when he offered - it was okay unlike last week for some reason!)

After service, I felt a little better - noticed Dave in the row behind me, haha. Talked to Hien about Kenny's pasty rice made with chicken broth instead of water, to William about candy, to Chrystal about relaxing at home, to Jeremy about the coffee, to Andrew / Adam / Lawrence about bossy fellow employees, and to other people as well. Saw Keenan trying to get some fruit slices with a bendy toothpick, so gave him a new one - even helped him get one, which Maxine saw. She got him to thank me, heh. A while later, I said hi to Winnie - then hailed Dave, and asked if he were going for lunch later. He was totally up for all-you-can-eat sushi, saying "we should drop some dollars on teriyaki!" (when I told Jon about this later, he was NOT impressed, haha)

Said hi to Lesley's friend Connie and her husband Alex - their son Christian was busy getting water from the cooler; so cute! Saw Karmie, who said that we're meeting this week. OH SHIT, I HAVE A CONFLICT! (sorta...) Karen I. said that her baby Mattias LOVED the fruit slices - no doubt! Greeted my sister when we were both at the coffee machine, and noticed Jessica watching Megan T. and Allison making friends, while all the boys wanted to be near the stage's drum set. Talked to Jon / Steph / Eric about tomorrow - no viewing party! (Mom wanted Eric to tape it anyway, and then she'd get it beforehand - DON'T BE STUPID AND BOTHER HIM!) Made my way out the door later, and greeted Daniel. He said that Megan T.'s brother Connor loved him - I could see it indeed! Went upstairs after saying hi to Jeff and Chung, and saw Auntie Ying / Rachel's grandma / Amos / Amanda / Esther / Margaret / Harrison / Conor. The boys showed me Transformers and instructions, haha.

Had to discipline Harrison soon after because Conor was crying - apparently, Harrison had thrown Conor's new motorcycle Transformer on the floor. I forced him to look at me, and asked how he'd feel if I did that to one of his toys. He did say SORRY, but I bet it was like what I did as a kid - not really meant, heh. Later, Auntie Ying said that it was good I did that - the kids did have to listen to us, and we had to make it a safe place for everyone. Next time, he gets his own car taken away for longer than two minutes! As usual, Conor was all over me, especially when he said he was scared of the devil - meh, it happens.

After Sunday School, I went downstairs to see what was going on - Steph was sitting with Grandma, and apparently got a "new" breadbox from Mom. Jon and Jeremy came out of the fellowship hall for a bit, and Grandma asked if we were eating with the White Man! Hahaha! Earlier, Jon had phoned Christon to see where he was: it's not like he habitually sleeps in like Nathan would! Turned out he was taking a weekend "Mechanical Estimating" course - oh dear, boring for us!

Dave and Wesley wanted to get McDonalds, but nobody else wanted that - Steph wasn't going to lie, because she wanted the free lunch with the family! Jon, Dylan, Deb (who thanked me for the "deaf" clarification over Facebook), Jeremy, and others went to the Congee Noodle House - I went to Pho with the family to save money despite being given $20 by Auntie Ying as payback for the birthday gifts. I was still glad to get home, however! Learned that my sister has a Toronto friend staying with her for about a month when the Olympics are in town.

A post on bad grammar and bad spelling (university-level) in Oh No They Didn't.

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Dream of pasta shells exploding in yogurt containers / Amusing OUTLANDER review / Snow Bunny

I dreamed that pasta shells would explode in a strawberry yogurt container (from Alison) if brought near the intense light and green jewels of an altar in a cave. What the heck...

Here's a funny review of OUTLANDER that Flora found:

Allow me to summarize it for you:

Claire: I love my husband! I love sex!
Frank: But it's okay if you have sex with someone else, in certain circumstances.
Standing Stones: SUCK! Ha ha, you're in another time!
The Anti-Frank: Ooooh, I think I will rape you.
Claire: Eeek!
Clansmen: Scots to the rescue! Here, meet Jamie and his manly manhood.
Jamie: Och, aye, I'm a tough laddie. And I'm going to kill the Anti-Frank for beating the shit out of me and raping my sister.
Claire: Ooooh, he's cute. Hey, wasn't I married? *shrug*
Dougal: Ye have to marry the laddie to get away from the Anti-Frank.
Claire: Okay.
Dougal: And ye have to have sex wit' him.
Claire: Mmmmm.... but.... well, okay.
Jamie: I'm a virgin. Oooh, but I love sticking my manhood in ye. It's like a sacrament and all.
Claire: I should get back to Frank, I think I will take this opportunity to run away... I guess... sort of... meh.
The Anti-Frank: Ha ha! Found you. Now to rape you!
Jamie: Och, that's my wee lassie. First I'm going to rescue her, then I'm going to beat her for disobeying me. And then I'm going to tell her about how me Da beat me and how much I liked it.
Jealous wench: The village witch is looking for you.
Claire: Okay!
Villagers: She's a witch! Burn her!
Jamie: Over my dead body!
Claire: Honey, I have something to tell you. I'm not a witch, but...
Jamie: Ye must go back!
Claire: I can't. I long for your manhood too much. It's a manhood like no other.
The Anti-Frank: I too long for your manhood. I think I will bugger you right after I crush your hand with a hammer. But, I love you. You remind me of my dead brother. Here's some grease.
Jamie: Ouch. Oooh, but that feels sort of good. Och, I'm so ashamed.
Claire: We must rescue Jamie! Send in the cows!
Jamie: OCH! Me hand! Just let me die!
Claire: Never! Let's go to France.
Jamie: Och, aye lassie, I feel much better now.
Father Anselm: God says it's okay that you're a bigamist.
Claire: Awesome. Time to use my foreknowledge of past events for good!
Diana Gabaldon: The sequel will be 900 pages.

You Are a Snow Bear

Like a bear, you're not a big fan of snow. If it has to snow, then wake you when it's over!

You think everything about snow stinks - it's cold, it's wet, and it's a total pain.

You'd rather be skiing than swimming. And you even think warm drinks are totally overrated.

You're happiest when you don't even have to think of snow. You were meant to live in the tropics.

I would rather SWIM than ski, thank you very much. :P

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Uncles, rice, Hien, and Alice in Wonderland syndrome

In between Trillian freezing on me all the time, I've been talking to Billie / Corey / Kenny (who's now an uncle) - good stuff. I'll have to ask Hien about Kenny's rice tomorrow, haha.

Trivia fact for Sunday, Jan. 31: In the world of medicine, what is the Alice in Wonderland syndrome? An ailment whose sufferers have a distorted sense of time and space, and believe their body (or parts of their body) have changed in size or shape. The name, of course, was inspired by Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

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