Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Leah's List of Grievences, Part I: Do This and I'll Cut You


Those of you who know me on a personal level, as in, you have met me at least once, and I haven't scared you away yet (I blame my height for my quirks, it just happens), you know that I have a tendency to be very outspoken about the little things that bother me. And let's be serious, there are quite a few. Call it a result of my obsessive compulsive personality, but the little things bother me more than most people, and seeing people do these things on an almost constant basis makes me want to do violence with golf clubs. Because it's that time of the year when I am extra irritable, also known as the end of the semester when all my shit is due, these things bother me more than usual. And now I am going to share what some of those things are so you can all be sure to avoid committing these atrocities in my presence, and to prevent me from having to cut you thug style.

1. People who have no clue what they are doing in an exercise class: these people drive me crazy. I will say kudos to you for getting out there and trying to be healthy, but don't 'drop in' to my class, and proceed to fall all over the place. I do Pilates. I have been doing it for years, and as a result I am in a fairly advanced level class. One of my biggest pet peeves are people who just want to 'drop in' and come to this class when they clearly don't have the skill level required. Case in point, at this weeks class there was a woman, whom I have never seen before in all the time I have been taking this exact class at this exact time (which is probably around 4 years) and it was a ball class. That means balance. Normally I sympathize with people who don't have very good balance, being a walking disaster myself most days, but this woman! Good lord! She was one hot mess, falling everywhere, her ball rolling into me, and don't even get me started on her form. This meant that instead of teaching the class, the instructor spent most of her time trying to fix this woman. Maddening. And instead of being all relaxed and energized and happy from pilates I walked away more irritated than I was before I started the class, because her presence was just so damn annoying!

2. Old people drivers: Let me say this, I honestly believe that people over the age of 75 need to take a yearly road test to make sure that they are still capable of traveling the speed limit, and can actually see over the steering well, and who can still shoulder check. As a tiny person myself, I know for a fact that there are things that you can do to help you see over the steering wheel. Hell, in my very first car, I sat on a pillow. Nothing drives me crazier than when you are rolling along, at a nice speed in the left hand lane, and then BAM! An old person is driving at least 20 under the speed limit. And they don't move into the right lane. And then you get someone in the right lane who paces the old person in the left lane making it impossible to pass. I get that things happen when you get old. You have a harder time seeing, and your sense of balance is all wonky so you think that you are traveling at a good pace, when really, you and your car from the dawn of time, are crawling. If there were road tests my road rage would be minimized, making the roads safer for everyone.

3. People who walk really slow: If you are, or have ever been a university student, you know the people of which I speak. Those really super slow walkers, who are often texting on their phones. I am all for multitasking, but if multitasking is taking more time than it is saving you, don't do it. Do yourself a favour and walk like a normal person. Nothing infuriates me more than having to rush from one side of the campus to the other in 5 minutes, and then finding myself stuck behind people who are just casually strolling around. Do you not have class to get to? Are you physically incapable of walking a speed slightly faster than molasses? I also get irritated with slow walkers at the mall. The ones who bring their infants, in their strollers, who then walk 5 abreast, really really slowly. By all means, walk at a glacial pace! I love it! And by love it, I mean I hate it. Do us all a favour, and walk faster dammit! If you find that walking is a challenge, I suggest you practice on a treadmill before unleashing your sluggishness on the world. Sloth is a sin you know...

4. When people touch my shit: I have a system. I call it organized chaos. I know where all my stuff is, because I have organized it in what looks like a disorderly fashion. When people come by and touch my things, moving them around, I lose it. Hours of research mixed in willy nilly! It brings me to tears almost every time it happens. Also, don't touch my cell phone. If I haven't given you permission to do so, don't touch it. I will break your fingers.

These are just the tip of the iceberg of things that bother me. Like I said, the time of year means that I get very irritated, very quickly. Also, this post was conceived because I am procrastinating. I have a paper to finish. On the plus side, I get to say 'bastard' as many times as I want. And that's why I love history.

The End

xoxo
Leah

Monday, 28 November 2011

Muesday: Guess Who Has Two Thumbs and Is a Giant Hypocrite?!

This gal!



I did it. I caved. I am ashamed. Like that time I kind of willingly, with minimal coercion, sang Justin Bieber, or really any other other shameful moment that I have ever had, of which there are many. I am now on the Twitter. The things I do to tell the world what a douche canoe cancer is. Dammit. Please feel free to judge me. I openly accept it.

But on the plus side, at least I can admit it when I am kind of an asshole, and a hypocrite. Like right now. Just goes to show that nothing is perfect right? Or at least not far off from perfection? Just let me have it.

So if anyone, or a few Russians, is interested in "following" me, you can do so @LopsidedLeah. You should, mostly because I have candy, and I'm not above bribery...

Anyway, enough about my continued failure at life, and on to some music. Let me ask you this? Who here has never heard of Mother Mother? If you haven't, do yourself a favour and stop listening to crappy top 40 hits, from a show hosted by the worlds most annoying man, also known as Ryan Seacrest, and listen to them. Keeping in the tradition of Canadian bands, (also because it appears that a substantial portion of the music I listen to, and love, just so happen to come from Canada) Mother Mother hail from Vancouver. Seriously, I'll say it once, and I'll say it again, B.C. has awesome music. So please, sit back and enjoy Chasing It Down by Mother Mother, off their newest album Eureka.




xoxo
Leah

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Accomplishment Unlocked: Published!

Alright everyone, one more time!

So remember how on Friday I was talking about something that I thought was really exciting but couldn't talk about yet?! Well, I can finally talk about it! I got an awesome email today. Here is what it says:

Dear Leah,

Constellations would like to thank you for your contribution this semester. We appreciate the opportunity to work with your article. Your paper undoubtedly required hours of research, reflection and passion. We recognize the time you gave to revisions and consideration of reviewer recommendations.

Just as celestial constellations guide travelers, Constellations seeks to help students navigate the process of publication and intellectual exchange. We encourage revision, exchange and discussion of undergraduate papers to refine editing skills and illuminate student research.

In light of the deliberation of the editing team and based on the quality of your revisions, Constellations is pleased to inform you that the journal will pursue publication of your paper, "‘The inordinate excess in apparel’: Sumptuary Legislation in Tudor England" in the Fall 2011 issue.

If you would like a copy of the final copyediting on your paper or have any other concerns, please contact the editor. We hope that you will participate in Constellations in the future and appreciate your support.

Sincerely,
Noor, Editor
Leah, Classics Editor
Lily, Assistant History Editor
Philip, Assistant Classics Editor


I'm getting published! In a legit academic (undergraduate at least) journal. This is so exciting! Now I can cross one more thing off my bucket list!!!! I wanted to be published by the time I was 30, and guess what, I am. This makes me not want to sit at my kitchen table all day writing papers, but instead go shopping and buy myself something pretty for a job well done! Go me! Also, just in case anyone was wondering, this is what my paper is about:

Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to explore the nature of sumptuary legislation in sixteenth century England. It argues that the aims of sumptuary legislation were threefold: that legislators sought to maintain the stability of the common weal through social regulation, through moral regulation by moralizing luxury goods, and to regulate England’s economy, by prohibiting foreign trade in luxury goods, in order to stimulate the home economy and the burgeoning wool and stocking trade.

Watch out, this only adds to my inflated sense of self!

xoxo
Leah

This is Shameful. Sh*t.

I did something last night that I am not proud out. It's so shameful, and once again I am left saying "let's pretend this never happened".

It was Merry XWreck's-mass last night, also known as the MS Society Staff Christmas party. It was at this divey little bar down the street from the office called XWrecks. Classy, I know. Basically we all got together and made pour (and yes, I spelled pour like that intentionally) decisions. There was kareoke.

What did I do that I am so ashamed of you ask? Remember that time I was like, there needs to be a vaccine for Bieber fever? Ya well, last night I sang Bieber kareoke with my friend Brit. She LOVES the Biebs, and somehow, I got conned/roped/persuaded to sing it with her. I should also just say that I wasn't drinking at all, so this happened with me being completely sober. I have no excuses. I have no idea how it happened, and now it's left me with a sense of shame. Although, I will give her this...when she rapped Ludacris, it actually made my night. But do you know what this kind of makes me know? A giant hypocrite. And possibly an asshole. This will never happen again. I have to get off this slippery slope that has the potential to end badly...with me maybe just liking Justin Bieber.

Let's pretend this never happened.

xoxo
Leah

Friday, 25 November 2011

Sh*t That Happened While I Was Away: Time, You're A Sneaky Bastard


Sh*t That Happened While I Was Away: What Fresh Hell is This?!


It's Friday! Thank you baby Jesus. This week marks the end of Hell Week #1 as I have come to affectionately call it. It brings me one step closer to the beginning of Hell Week #2, meaning that all the shit that I didn't do when I was supposed to and left to the last minute is due, AND I have the LSAT (again) next Saturday. That's...fun? Maybe. I don't know. All I know is that my life is regimented in hour long segments, and I have spent quite a substantial amount of time calling myself all kinds of names, like idiot, for leaving things to the last minute. I don't know why I am surprised though. It always happens, without fail. I get all my research materials with the good intention of starting early, and then I get complacent, and think to myself "hey, it's October, that paper's not due till December, that's loads of time". And then the end of November hits, and shmabam! I panic and freak out. Time is a sneaky bastard that has a tendency to run out on you.

Anyway, because I have been preoccupied, I am bringing you something that I made up, right this very second, called "Sh*t That Happened When I Was Away". This is also going to happen mostly because I am having a hard time coming up with anything witty at this current juncture in time. So ya. Here you go:

1. Apparently the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care decided that they needed to change the Breast Cancer screening guidelines in Canada. Normally, I would be all for this...if it was a change for the good. Basically they are acting like super villains in some cheesy 1960's comic book and are recommending completely ridiculous things. For example, they are recommending that women between the ages of 40-49 don't need mammograms, that physicians only need to administer breast exams every 2-3 years, and that self checking your breasts is unnecessary. Um, excuse me? Pretty sure a self check saved my life...just saying. If you'd like to see idiocy in action, go here. I did an interview with CTV about how stupid they are. You can go here, to view it. Go to to the CTV news video player and it's the second link from the bottom. Challenging idiots is what I do best. Maybe Probably I'm just a naturally confrontational person.

1.5. Also, I didn't swear. I almost did, but thought better of it. Also, pretty sure people don't want to see a tiny, angry person swearing like she's a raging lunatic on television.

2. I am thinking of joining the Twitter. I should probably qualify this. I have, in the past, railed about how stupid I think Twitter is, mostly because I could quite frankly care less about what someone is doing at any second of the day. I normally just care about what I am doing (kind of selfish? maybe?). Also because I don't really think anyone would want to follow (is that what it's called?) me...but then again one could argue that I didn't really think anyone would read my blog and apparently people do...or at least a couple Russians do, so maybe people would like me on the Twitter as well? But here's the thing. I was asked by my good friends at the ACF to join, so I could talk about this awesome fundraiser that we are having on 24 March called Bust a Move. And this got me thinking. Even though I really don't like Twitter, it is a powerful platform of social media, meaning that I could further disseminate my wit and wisdom all over the interweb (and have another in-road to Russia...seriously, I love Russia...don't ask). Also, it would be for cancer. Well not for cancer, but for me to talk about cancer. And let's be serious, we all know how much I like telling the world that cancer is a real A-hole. I haven't quite decided to take the leap yet, but I am being persuaded to. Damn you peer pressure. This has the potential to either go over very well, or will end up with me saying "let's pretend this never happened". Stay tuned.

3. My books that I wrote for work are finally printed! Two years of blood, sweat and tears went into them and they are finally printed! Now all I have to do is wait for my other 3 books to print! I can see the light at the end of a tunnel. Seriously, like cancer, MS is a real A-hole.


4. Is anyone else as confused about 'Black Friday' as I am? What is it and why does it exist? Is it like the American equivalent of boxing day? I know we get boxing day here in Canada, and in places like Australia, but that's because it is a bank holiday for all us nations who decided to remain part of the commonwealth (I won't get into what I think about the American Revolution, mostly because I think it would really piss people off...I really can't help it that I am a royalist at heart). All I know about Black Friday is that there are some seriously awesome shopping deals going on, and that Canada has decided to kind of adopt it. This is both a very good thing and a very bad thing. Good because I like getting things for cheap, and bad because I like getting things for cheap. I think my dad would probably kill me if I brought home another pair of shoes. All I know is that it took every single ounce of will power that I have not to go to Anthropologie and go shopping today. This is a big deal.

5. I have some awesome news (at least I think it's awesome) that I can't really talk about yet, but I will soon. All I can say is that it has to do with history and my inflated sense of self. I have also given myself 5 gold stars. It's so good that I want to go out and buy myself something pretty (see #4). Must. Have. Will Power. More on this later.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go and read all about illegitimacy, bastard's and the London Foundling Hospital in the eighteenth century. This is also probably why I have used "bastard" several times in this post. Oops?

xoxo
Leah

Monday, 21 November 2011

Muesday: I Never Realized How Creepy Some of My Childhood Toys Were



When I was younger, probably around 8, all I wanted for Christmas was this stuffed-ish toy called a Puppy Surprise. I think it had something to do with the gaping void in my life that would only be filled with a real puppy. At this time, I had no idea that I would be getting a real puppy that spring (hint mum and dad: that void needs to be filled again. I want a puppy for Christmas. Barring that, I will take shoes). But back to my original point. It had a soft body, with this hard plastic face, and you could open up it's stomach, which was closed with velcro. The whole premise of this toy was that when the stomach was opened, the dog would reveal a "litter" of beanbag puppies. You could get 3, 4, or 5 puppies, each with a hard face and head, just like the mum. One of the best parts, and probably one of the biggest selling features to my 8 year old self was the fact that some of these "puppies" were awake and others were asleep. I remember trying to be as good as I possibly could that year because that toy was all I wanted for Christmas. I think I even took a break from being a smart ass know it all for a few weeks, which is kind of a big deal...it shows just how committed I was to getting what I most wanted. I didn't care about anything else. Santa could bring me that one gift and I would be happiest child on the face of the planet. I was obsessed. You can only imagine my excitement come Christmas morning, as my little sister and I woke up at the crack of dawn, and waited impatiently by the Christmas tree for my parents to drag themselves out of bed. My dad set up the video camera and my mum made coffee, and after our stockings were done, my sister and I began the painstakingly slow ritual of each taking a turn to open our presents. I was shaking with excitement, like a little chihuahua that needs a sweater, waiting for the moment when I would tear off that wrapping paper and the holy grail of toys would be revealed to me. We were about halfway through, and it was my sisters' turn. She opened up her gift and it was a Puppy Surprise. I was immediately filled with jealousy, thinking it was unfair that she had one and I had to still find mine in the mound of gifts, assuming that I was going to get one. Then I had that sinking thought of "What if Santa wanted to spite me this year?! What if that fat, jolly bastard didn't bring me a Puppy Surprise at all?!". I wasn't too thrilled with the prospect of having to watch my little sister gleefully play with her new, awesome toy, while I had to content myself with new socks. I think I actually began formulating plans on how to steal her Puppy Surprise away from her. Maybe I would distract her with a mirror or something equally as shiny that a 6 year old would want. Then finally, close to the end, I got what I most wanted. It was beautiful in my 8 year old eyes, a lovely "German Shepherd" (a breed I use loosely of course). I couldn't wait to rip open that stomach and see how many puppies she held. Unable to contain our excitement any longer, my sister and I madly ripped open our puppies. We eagerly counted them, and I came away with 5, all with their eyes open! It was a treasure trove of the most coveted combination. I will say this, I gloated a little as my sister found she only had three, two of which had their eyes closed. My parents caught all of this one tape, as we proceeded to name them. I named them things like 'Buddy' and 'Pinky'. When asked what she was naming her puppies, my 6 year old sister replied, "Jesus, Mary and Joseph". I still don't know how or why she came up with this. Maybe it was because it was Christmas and at church the night before there had been a play about the birth of Christ? I think I might be grasping at straws. I don't even think she knows how she came up with this. All I know is that it makes me cry I laugh so hard remembering it.

Thinking back on it, I now fully realize how incredibly morbid and creepy this toy was. Think about it. How violent is it that in order to get to the puppies inside, you were basically ripping open the stomach of an animal, and ripping out its young. Maybe it's just me, but that's creepy. I have also come to the conclusion that those hard plastic faces were not conducive to cuddling. When you're little, you like to hug and cuddle your favorite toys. This toy was decidedly un-cuddly. Also creepy, Water Babies. It's basically a naked child that also serves as a hot water bottle. There is something inherently wrong with that. It's funny how as children, we don't think there is anything wrong or creepy with the toys and the shows we watched, and how it's only when we're older that we realize how inappropriate some of them were. Seriously, the more that I think about it, the more that I realize that the things that I wanted the most as a child were definitely among the creepiest things I can think of now. Maybe that's why I'm kind of weird.

Now for some music!

I love Shad, and I especially love it when he combines his talent with other great Canadian groups. I was watching the American Music Awards on Sunday night, or at least part of them, and as I was running out door to soccer practice, I heard John Legend quote the New York Times as stating that Drake is at the epicentre, and is one of the most influential artists in hip hop. I am all for Canadian's getting recognition, especially in the music industry, and hey, he was pretty awesome as Jimmy on Degrassi (I totally cried when he was shot in that one episode and then spent the rest of his time on the series confined to a wheelchair, kind of like Artie from Glee, except with less show-tunes), but I would have to disagree. I mean, Drake is fine and all, but I seriously think Shad is way more talented. If you take a minute to just sit and listen to how clever and witty his lyrics are, and the simple fact that he hardly ever swears or uses derogatory language, or autotune, puts Shad miles above Drake in terms of talent. Not to mention the simple fact that he can pair his talents with groups from very different genres and make simply magical and engaging music. Last time I shared his amazing duet with Dallas Green from City and Colour. This week I am going to share with all of you the combination of his amazing talent, with that of Hey Ocean!, a nice little trio out of Vancouver. Vagabond is yours to enjoy. Also, I just have to say the jazz flute makes my inner band geek very happy (yes I was a band geek, and yes, I played the flute, please feel free to judge me). Also also, I love that the title of the song is vagabond (anyone who know me, knows that I love 16th century vagrancy legislation!)!



xoxo
Leah

P.S. This post makes me feel really old. That toy came out in 1991. I'm almost ancient.

Friday, 18 November 2011

The Big Book of Douchebaggery

Um, so I fully realize that I already posted once today, but it's been one of those days where I am stuck inside with mountain of books and a To Do list that is taller than I am, which inevitably means that I am procrastinating. I was just settling down to read about the oh so uplifting topic of child abandonment and poor children in 18th century England, when I stumbled on this:




What. The. Hell?! These CarLashes have got to be the dumbest thing since SpiritHoods. Who in their right mind would get them?! They look ridiculous! Sometimes I actually have to sit back and consider what this world is coming to. I mean, last time I checked there was some kind of economic crisis going on, and pretty sure people would rather eat than spend money on putting eyelashes on their car, with crystal eyeliner to match. This is not whimsical. This is not adorable. This is not flirty. This is stupid. Sheer stupidity. Seriously! If I saw these driving around, I would seriously have to question whether the person who bought them was, A) sane, B) Drunk, C) Both, when they decided that it was a good life choice to waste their money on them. These are being added to my Big Book of Douchebaggery as we speak, under Useless Crap No One Will Ever Want or Need! It joins the pink quilted smart car cover. Can you image what kind of unholy demon would result in the marriage of that car cover and these stupid car lashes?! It gives me shivers just thinking about it.


xoxo
Leah

Judgement Placed



This is what I found when I opened up my computer this morning. It's actually quite sad that I forgot about this note altogether, and I wrote it two days ago. I somehow think I am might just fail at this one. I think that instead of trying to come up with something funny and/or witty today, I am just going to write about what I want to write about, and that is judgment.

We all judge people. We can't help it. I have been called the Queen of Snap Judgments on occasion, and I will freely admit to it. I have a judging buddy, who unfortunately moved to Halifax, but that doesn't mean that I have stopped. Au contraire mon amie. I have a very low threshold for bullshit which makes judging people that much easier. Usually it's in the form of what people are wearing (like Spirithoods, Ugg boots with short short, slippers that people think are shoes), or from the stupid things people say(there is such a thing as a stupid question, and they usually come from stupid people). I had a friend who sent me a message yesterday, asking me about something historical. I answered her question and she then told me that her prof was trying to tell her otherwise. I'm sorry, but you hold a PhD and you honestly think that a man's family gave a dowry to a woman's family in the 18th century?! Were you dropped on your head recently?! Haven't you read anything, ever?! Do you not know that men were worth more and that the woman's family had to throw something extra in like a couple goats or a llama to sweeten the deal and get him to take her off their hands?! Apparently not.

This brings me to my main point. It's that time of year again. The time of year that I look forward to with great anticipation. What is this thing I look so forward to you ask? Course evaluations. I love them. I see them as a way to provide constructive (and sometimes not so constructive) criticism to a person who has been judging you and grading you all semester. It's a turning of the tables, that I look forward to. Normally, I am pretty nice in my evaluations. I am all for constructive criticism and will give it out as nicely as I can. However, there are just some courses where you rub your hands together in excitement and glee, as you wait for that itty bitty number 2 pencil to be placed in front of you. For me, these instances are usually reserved for courses that I have absolutely loathed with every fibre of my being. The times when I can outright tell a prof that they are wrong and that they need to seriously consider revamping thier course. In my opinion some profs deserve this kind of feedback. They are the profs who are unclear in their instructions, are unrealistic in their expectations, and who blatantly ignore you when you kindly tell them that they are mistaken. For example, I took a survey of historic dress class last fall. I love clothing and fashion and history(my dream job would be to be a historical consultant for movie and television!), so I was really excited when I saw that this course was offered, even though it wasn't a history class, but a human ecology one. I was willing to overlook that fact because I was going to get to learn about pretty clothes. At first the class wasn't so bad. I did think that she was asking a lot out of a pretty big survey class, but hey, I was willing to give her the benefit of the doubt. It was a couple weeks into class, and we were in the early modern period, and this is when I started to hate the class, and her. She started making these sweeping statements about society and social status and norms and tenuously trying to link them to the way people dressed (this is something entirely possible to do, but you have to have done your research!). That was her first mistake. If you are going to make claims like that in a class, at least do your research, and maybe make sure you don't have any early modernists sitting in class. Her second mistake was the paper. That hated paper, which everyone (with the exception of a few, myself included) did terribly on. Basically, by the time evaluations rolled around I was so done with her stupidity, that I basically ripped her and her course to shreds. By the time the final hit, I was really glad that I gave her the evaluation that I did, because upon sitting down and writing it, I noticed that one of her questions was logically flawed and had not one, but two answers. I raised my hand and pointed this out to her. She looked at me, and told me to just leave it alone and answer the one I knew was right...my argument was that they were both right, so technically I could put one or the other. This isn't the LSAT where you choose the one that is more right than the other possibly right answers. She looked at me, and just told me to answer the question with the answer I knew was right. She didn't even bother to acknowledge her error. I was unimpressed.

Does this make me a know it all and possibly a bitch? Maybe. But I have no time for people like that, and even less patience for courses like that. The last I heard, she dropped the paper altogether and drastically revamped her course. I see my feedback as an act of kindness, in that, by providing the (perhaps a little vitriolic) feedback that I did, I was helping the students who decided to take the course after me. Also, in that she could re-evaluate the ways in which she approached her class, and possibly do a bit more historical research before she started making sweeping grand claims about time periods. This is why I get excited about evaluations. Regardless of how they are stated, course evaluations allow for room for improvement. Either that, or maybe MY expectations are too high and I have perfectionist tendencies and a mild case of OCP (I have rediagnosed myself with obsessive compulsive personality, rather than obsessive compulsive disorder...who needs a doctor!)...that's probably more so the case. Oh well.




xoxo
Leah

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Muesday: Every Action Has an Opposite and Equal...Oh Screw It! I Never Liked Physics Anyway

I went into history for a reason. It was because I am terrible at math. And science. No joke. I have a hate-hate relationship with math, as in, I wish math many painful deaths by excessive stabbing. The same can actually be said for most of the sciences. I totally understand that without science and math, the world we live in wouldn't exist. But that doesn't mean that I can't hate it. Chemistry and I don't get along, mostly because I see it as being kind of like cooking, in that you have to make sure that you get everything just so, in order to avoid a nuclear explosion. I am not that great at following those directions, and as with cooking, I get bored really easily. Biology was never my friend because I really don't like things that are slimy, and squishy (I actually don't even really like the word squishy), and I find bodily fluids and functions and the discussion of them to be in poor taste. I also hate it because I really don't like dissecting things (I remember being forced to dissect a shark in one of my honours science classes. My group and I named him Cleadus...poor, poor Cleadus). If I had to chose the lesser of the evils, it would be physics. Go figure, considering how I despise math with every fibre of my being. I think I dislike it the least because a) I can kind of see how it works and applies to every day life (when the hell am I ever going to know the molecular mass of cadmium?! Never, that's when), and b) because it was the only thing that got me through astronomy. Yes, I took astronomy. I needed a science credit for a prereq, and I most certainly was not taking math, and the university decided not to let me use my History of Science and Technology credit after the fact (which was a piss off because I got an A in that class)! I thought it was going to be about planets and pretty stars and shit. You can only imagine my shock when I figured out that it was really physics in space. That was a bad life choice on my part. What has space ever done for me?! Or physics? Or math, or any other science?! (Yes, I know a lot, but I am going to be petulant and say nothing).

This hatred of sciencey and mathy type things made my decision to go into history very easy. Also, because for some strange reason I am good at history. I can remember dates and dead people and events and social theory like nobodies business. Weird, I know.

Today I give you another band out of British Colombia. Seriously, I don't know what it is about B.C., but they produce some seriously talented artists and bands, along with some pretty kick ass fruit. I have been listening to Acres of Lions since their first album debuted in 2009, and I love them more and more with every new song and album. So, enjoy some more great Canadian music with Reaction by Acres of Lions.



xoxo
Leah

P.S. I think I'm pretty clever! Did anyone notice what I did with the title and the song?! No, just me?

P.P.S. I love that the music video has a shot of Sonic 102.9 headquarters!

Monday, 14 November 2011

It's Happening. Dammit!

It's happening. No, not the Rapture. Snow. This makes me sad.



It took forever to get home. The roads are terrible. Also, I have come to the conclusion that people, in general are assholes. Don't tailgate on icy roads asshat! It's a bad life choice that will end up with you needing a new car.


Also, I love how the worst roads are the ones in Sherwood Park. Good job Strathcona County for being on the ball and getting those sanding truck out. Not. You all fail at life.

I'm going to pout about this.

xoxo
Leah

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Oh Shit, the Sky is Falling!...Wait, False Alarm, That's Just Snow



I was really really really extra hoping that we weren't going to get snow this year. I hate snow. With a passion. Every year I get just a little hopeful, and think that it's not going to snow, and that Edmonton won't turn into Dante's forgotten frozen circle of hell, and every year, I am horribly disappointed. I know some people love the snow. They love snow sports, like skiing and snowboarding and skating and curling (curling is just very confusing for me). They get so excited at the first snowfall because that means that the ski hills can start creating their own snow and that soon the hills will be open. Perhaps if I actually did any of the above mentioned activities I would like snow a little bit more, but the fact of the matter is, I am a complete, and utter clumsy disaster when I walk, and I can only imagine that having my feet strapped to a board of some kind would only end in pain and woe. I bruise very easily, which I have mentioned before, but these sports look like I would most definitely break something if I tried it. I have a friend who went skiing once and broke her femur and she is an experienced and awesome skier. This makes me think that if I were to go skiing or snowboarding, I would probably die. I would fall down and get buried in the snow and then no one would find me until spring, kind of like that movie Vertical Limit that came out in the late '90's about those people who went up on Everest and then they ended up finding their guides wife frozen to death in a glacier....Pretty sure I am going to stick to being inside where it's warm and safe. The only winter sport I will ever take part in is indoor soccer. The closest I ever get to climbing mountains or skiing or whatever in the winter, is sitting in the lounge at the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge, sitting by the roaring great fire, and sipping hot chocolate.

I don't like being cold, or wet, and the snow is both. That's strike number two against it (the first strike is that it exists in the first place). Being as little as I am, means I am usually wrapped up in some kind of warm sweater or a flannel shirt, and I am still shivering (kind of like a chihuahua in a sweater). In the winter, I sleep with no less that 5 blankets on my bed with flannel sheets. It's really quite sad. Snow just sucks. It also sucks because it means that I become a paranoid mess (even more so than usual) when I got out to drive somewhere. I love to drive, and I will gladly drive anywhere in the summer, but the minute the snow hits the ground, I become a hermit. I hate icy roads, and the fact that people are assholes who forget that it's winter and that it's a lot harder to stop on a super icy surface. I should also mention that while I do love winter fashions (I love chunky knit sweaters and cute boots), snow and winter are just not conducive to looking cute. I hate how you can have the cutest outfit picked out and then you have to cover it up with a giant parka and Ugg boots (although I will say this. I love my Ugg boots! However, they should not be worn outside of winter and snow, and NEVER with short shorts) in order to stay warm. Say goodbye to wearing cute dresses and heels. Snow is just bad news all around.

In the winter, I can deal with the cold, but it's the snow that gets me. It's one of the main reasons why I am looking at moving away for law school, to someplace like Vancouver where it does snow, but it doesn't stick around for what seems like an eternity, like it does in Edmonton. Hell, I would even take a million consecutive days of rain, if it meant that I never had to see another snow flake. I guess I will just have to continue to hope that we will get a warm snap and that all the snow will melt and that it won't come back for a very long time.


Also, I just thought that I would let you all know that I failed this weekend. Shit. This is shameful...

xoxo
Leah

Thursday, 10 November 2011

A High Probability of Failure


So, it's a long weekend. Thanks U of A for taking my money and then giving me days off. Sure you have the highest amount of teaching days in the country but that's beside the point. I guess I really shouldn't be complaining. I mean, they did give students an extra day off so we don't all go kill ourselves before our papers are due and finals creep up. But still. At least if I were at school I wouldn't be tempted to procrastinate and do things other than being a real, responsible adult.

That being said, I would like nothing more than to sit around all day being fantastic. Unfortunately, I can't. I will instead have to be content with doing about a million things, and being fantastic. But let's be serious, I'm always fantastic. I wish it was December 20. If it were December 20, I would be done finals, all my papers would have been handed in, and "LSAT: Round Two" (it sounds more badass than it really is) would be over. Oh right, I forgot to mention that I am indeed writing it again. I want scholarships, mostly because I like getting money for doing absolutely nothing, and in order to do that, my score has to be the teensiest bit higher. Plus, it's not like writing it again is detrimental. But I digress...

Long weekends are like a treat. The kind that leaves you sick and feeling fat...kind of like if you ate an entire pie to yourself, and then washed it down with a pint of ice cream. They trick you into thinking that you have all this free time, because everyone has a day off, and all the good malls close early. You feel as if you can slack off and that you have all the time in the world to get your shit done. At the start of a long weekend you feel basically invincible and badass, throwing time away like nobodies business. But then you hit the latter half of the long weekend you start to feel guilty about everything you said you were going to accomplish but didn't. And then the day before the long weekend is over, you start to panic and freak out, frantically racking your brain for ways to keep yourself awake so you can finish whatever it is that needs to be done, and so you don't fail at life, all the while questioning where the hell all that time you thought you had went. This is kind of why I am glad that I am (still) a student. I can have moments of free time, but at the end of the day, I have way to much shit to accomplish and not enough hours in the day. Having free time again, would be great. Well kind of. I tend to do really stupid things, that I may or may not regret, when I have free time on my hands. Most of the time my conscience tells me not to do something (I am currently conflicted, and I most definitely see myself doing something that I may come to regret, and that might make me cry in the not so distant future), but I ignore it, mostly because I like instant gratification, and do stupid things anyway. These things usually end with me saying "let's pretend this never happened", or alternatively, "let's never speak of this again", or better yet, "it's best when you're not talking". This is another reason why I plan on keeping myself busy all long weekend, and trying to get shit done. It makes life less awkward for me, and I have less guilt, which I am all for. I will say this though, there is a high probability that I will fail miserably at both getting shit done, and at listening to that inner voice. I'm not sure how I feel about this.

Sometimes I think all my problems and issues could be solved in the span of one long weekend. Then I realize that I have way to many problems and issues, that most likely won't even be fixed by therapy. But a girl can hope right?

xoxo
Leah

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Muesday: Dear Santa, I Mean Rapture...

It's the Christmas season. You know how I can tell? I can tell by the simple fact that Halloween hadn't even passed and stores were putting all their Christmas stuff up. Not to mention Starbucks brought back a few of their beloved Christmas treats and drinks. When Starbucks does this, you know that the season is upon you. What this means is that I have started my wish list of things that I would like for my birthday/Christmas. I usually don't ask for much, but that's because I have expensive taste. I will freely admit that. It's because of this fact that I am very cognisant of what I put on my list, also because I know what items are reasonable to ask for. But this year, this year I have found something that I want badly enough that I am going to throw caution to the wind and throw my request out there! I would even give my other boob to get this item! It's basically the nerdiest thing in the whole entire world, but I honestly feel that my library and my life will never be complete without it! What is this amaze-balls gift I am asking for? I am asking for the full set of The Statutes of the Realm, Printed by Command of His Majesty, King George the Third, in 11 volumes. Did I mention that this 11 volume set is a bargain at $12, 975.00?! I know that this is entirely unrealistic, but a girl can dream right? Even if it's a completely nerdy, incredibly absurd dream that most people would find utterly strange. I just can't help myself sometimes. I let the nerd in me come out to play. I got excited when I saw inserts of some of the statutes, in Latin, in 14th century court script.  I feel like this is slightly shameful.

Alas, I somehow think that this will be a gift that will be perpetually stuck on my wish list forever, or at least until the Rapture happens, in which case, if I'm left on earth, I can just go to the J.A. Weir Law Library and the Rutherford at the U of A and take the whole set...and really any other book that I might want. Wait, this actually sounds like a not bad idea.




Speaking of the rapture, is anyone else as confused by this as I am?


I think I will stick to more attainable presents...like a puppy. Or a pygmy goat! Nevermind that I will probably die from an allergic reaction! In that event I'll go with a puppy, mostly because I know you can get hypoallergenic ones, and the last time I checked you can't get hypoallergenic goats, which is really too bad. How awesome would that be?! You could have a hypoallergenic pygmy goat! It'd be like a house hippo! But I digress, as usual. Again, these are probably not the most realistic gifts to be given. I need to start thinking less ridiculous and more realistic. But really, what do you expect, I'm a pretty ridiculous person. I'm going to get creative this year with my wish list, and by creative, I mean ask for outrageous things and see what I can get away with. I hope everyone else is working on badass lists!

This week, I was having a particularly craptastic Tuesday. It was not optimal, and not even the fresh cuts at Anthrolpologie cheered me up. It was terrible, until Courage by the Tragically Hip came up on my iPod. If I had to choose one word that I would try to live by for the rest of my life, it would be courage. Listening to the Tragically Hip reminds me of being little(r). It reminds me of driving around with my dad in the summer, with the windows rolled down, listening to the Tragically Hip, Black Sabbath (um, Perry Mason is amazing!), Pearl Jam, REM, etc, as loud as the speakers would go. The Tragically Hip are just one of those bands that always make me feel better. Their lives shows are amazing, and Gord Downie is a legit genius. I remember right before I was diagnosed I saw them live and they had this amazing light show when they played Giftshop (which you should go and download now, if you don't already have this amazing song!). So, because I had a rather awful Tuesday, and because I love Gord Downie and Rob Baker, you all get to listen to Courage by The Tragically Hip (who are also, Canadian). Enjoy!





xoxo
Leah

P.S. If anyone just so happens to have an extra copy of Alan Hunt's Governance of the Consuming Passions: A History of Sumptuary Law laying around and is looking to get rid of it, I know of someone (me) who would be more than willing to take it off your hands...

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Cancer is a Real A-Hole

I would just like to thank my good friend Courtney for sharing this with me. It's hilarious, and amazing, and funny.


"Because cancer loves Glen Beck and hates nachos".


xoxo
Leah

Friday, 4 November 2011

When Homemade Goes Horribly Wrong



So, because I like to procrastinate, instead of finishing up most of my law school applications, which are due like now, I decided to peruse Regretsy. I have been a fan of the site for quite some time and it has made me realize the EXACT demographic Esty caters to. Hipsters. In order to further confirm my theory, I then decided to look at Etsy, a website which I will freely admit to visiting every now and again, but have never bought from, because while I find some things to be quite lovely, most of it is I find to be quite contrived and made of trash. Literal trash. It's the stuff that you would find in a garage sale that people are throwing out because it's useless, that a Hipster would then pick up and decide to be ironic with. But back to my original point. Etsy caters to the EXACT SAME people that wear SpiritHoods (HATRED courses through me when I think of those incredibly stupid, sorry excuses for hats/hoods/headwear and the assholes that insist on wearing them! I judge and I judge hard, and then when I am done judging I seriously contemplate violence with golf clubs). Seriously, if you look at half of the descriptions for crap on Etsy, it's all for these hippy dippy trippy, earth loving, politically correct, no shaving, braless idiots (sorry, but saggy boobs are really unattractive...luckily for me, I will never have to worry about that), who say things like "I love not really knowing what I am going to make until it happens; it's much more organic that way", type products that have absolutely no value whatsoever.

Like really, someone wants to charge $2,500 for a quilted pink car cover. I will say that it has one thing going for it and that is that it was created in conjunction for breast cancer awareness, but I don't see any place that says that the proceeds will go to a charity benefiting breast cancer research. What is mind boggling for me is that someone actually said to themselves, "You know what I think this world needs? A pink, patchwork quilted smart car cover! It will have velcro closures and everything! That is a great idea, and probably won't be a complete and utter waste of my time and energy at all!". First of all, smart cars aren't real cars. Why don't you go out and be a grown up and buy a real person car. I hear Honda makes a nice compact that actually has trunk space! A smart car is a fake car. It's like the hillbilly, backwater, inbred cousin of cars that no one likes to talk about. The only time driving a smart car is acceptable is if you have gone to clown college, then you and all your clown friends can do your homework on how to pack as many of you into as small a space as possible, or if you live somewhere like London, or Paris, but even then, drive a Fiat for goodness sake! Second, why the hell would anyone in their right mind think that there is a market for such a product?! I am going to go out on a limb here and say that some smart car owners still have a shred of self respect and dignity left, and that they aren't going to further humiliate themselves by buying a pink, patchwork quilted smart car cover. But let's not forget those velcro closures! I'm sorry, you've already wasted what is probably a substantial amount of time planning, and then making a pattern, and then getting the fabric and then assembling the damn thing, that you can't be bothered to put a zipper in?! Like really! What's an extra couple of minutes added on to an already colossal waste of time and resources!? Might as well go big or go home?! Velcro! What is this, a pair of shoes for a child?! Does it also light up and make noises?! I have a suggestion for you. Instead of being a complete and utter idiot and making things that no one is going to buy and/or ever need or want, why don't you give up the dream and go back to your real job. Seriously, there are so many douchey things on Etsy it's moved from the realm of funny, to the realm of annoying and sad, as it has made me lose a little bit more faith in humanity. This gives a whole new meaning to "where DIY meets WFT".

There is nothing about most of the products on Etsy that is even remotely endearing, mostly because they are just asking begging screaming to be made fun of. Lucky for many of the sellers on Etsy, who insist in making such a monstrosities, often out of trash, there are assholes in this world, like myself, who will be more than happy to make sure you know just how stupid they think you are for making this, and maybe make you regret your decision just a little bit.

xoxo
Leah

(Photo and quote (Laura Mazurek) from Etsy)

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Noli Me Tangere


 This is the first time I ever met Chad...please notice how terrified I look...I clearly do not enjoy this. And yet, it inevitably always happens when Chad is around...it's a good thing he is one of my favourite people...

I have this thing where I really don't like it when people I don't know touch me. It's just creepy and it makes me want to take a shower. I feel the same way when I go to Value Village, which is once in a blue moon. I actually want to bathe in Purell when I leave Value Village. If, for some unknown reason I do have to go in, I keep my hands either in my pockets, or clasped together in front of me, so I don't accidentally touch anything and contract some disease or parasite. Again, I feel the same way when people I don't know touch me. I think it's the germaphobe in me. It's one of the reasons why I don't like going to bars/clubs, because they are inevitably packed with drunk, spilly people, who more often than not, like to come up to me and tell me how cute and miniature sized I am (No joke. I was out for a friends birthday and some random, very drunk guy, came up to me, and started hugging me saying that I was the tiniest and cutest girl in the bar. I actually had to fight the reaction to knee him in the groin, as he continued in this vein of conversation while breathing on me. It was horrible.). Usually this is followed by threats of bodily harm and lots of profanity coming out of my mouth. Just because you are drunk, does not mean it is acceptable to throw away every single thing you have ever learned about the concept of personal space. I most certainly do not enjoy smelling your beer breath, so please, keep your hands to yourself.

It's because of this intense dislike of being touched that I developed one of my greatest fears: theme park mascots...well, mascots of any kind. Seriously, they are so incredibly creepy. They always want to hug and touch, and when they do seize you in their satanic and diabolical clutches, they are so warm, and slightly damp and it's so gross. It seriously creeps me out. I will run in the opposite direction, very quickly when I see one. I will yell at it, and if that fails, much like with drunk bar people, I will utter threats of bodily harm and violence with golf clubs. I just can't help it. The fight or flight response is just too great for me to try and ignore.

I will say this though, once I get to know a person, I am good to go and totally love to give hugs, and won't (often) threaten people who do decide to touch me. Also, I have no problem shaking someone's hand...well, almost no problem. Again, germaphobe. I think this whole post came about because a friend and I were talking about getting a massage. I just think the whole concept of getting a massage by some strange person is so disgusting. I mean, you're very vulnerable, and then there is the whole massage process itself, the thought of which is nauseating.  I just can't bring myself to go. I have heard from so many people how wonderful they are, but instead of picturing a relaxing treat, all I can think of is how some strange person would be touching me, and I am the farthest thing from relaxed. It actually makes me shudder and cringe in terror.

I think I need therapy...

xoxo
Leah