Friday, November 28, 2008

My inspiration

"If you want something said, ask a man... if you want something done, ask a woman." Margaret Thatcher

Over 14 years ago, my mom took the leap from farm wife to municipal politician. She sat on a council that consisted solely of men. I remember discussions about municipal issues around the dinner table, discussions that would spur my own interest in the political system.

When I went to university, preparing for a future law degree, I chose to take politics instead of pursuing the English degree she thought I should pursue. She didn’t understand my reasons. She didn’t understand what I could do with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. She didn’t understand that I was so intrigued by the discussions we had, that I was so inspired by her and the work she did in an old male-dominated field in our small community. I saw the difference that she made, the passion she held for our community and I wanted to be able to do the same.

I remember that no matter what was going on at home, no matter what time of the day or night, when residents called our house complaining about their gravel roads not being graded, or the state of the community, she would listen and put on her happy voice.

As our small municipal council grew with the amalgamation of three townships, council members from all joining parties were at risk. She remained on as the sole woman. Residents of our community saw her integrity, her dedication and her passion for the community and chose her for the new, smaller council. She was always my role model, no matter how we were getting along at the time. She has moved from councilor to deputy mayor, and now she’s looking for a new challenge as the potential warden for the county.

From an article in our town’s newspaper: “Having experienced county council for a number of years now, I think it is time to step forward and create a bigger challenge,” she explained. The current economic downturn will no doubt top the agenda heading into next year and the deputy mayor seems ready to tackle anything. “It’s important to be up on all of the issues and I look forward to all of the challenges in 2009,” she said.

A lot of the qualities I have accumulated, I owe to her. Her strength, her intelligence and her dedication to make our community, if not the world, a better place. I couldn’t be more proud.

"One isn’t necessarily born with courage, but one is born with potential. Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.” Maya Angelou

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Beginning to look a little like Christmas

The snow has yet to show itself in full force, but I'm prepared for Christmas regardless. Just a couple more small things to pick up, and I'm good to go. Also, I need to make some gift tags, the star-shaped sticky notes just aren't cutting it (though they ensure that the presents I got for people don't accidently make it to someone else).

Our tree is nothing fancy. I got it for free from an old workplace that was going to throw it out. It's probably over 20 years old, it loses so many fake pine leaves whenever you touch it that you're unsure as to how there's still a tree in the first place, but it just needs a little love. Since free is about as much as I'm willing to pay for a Christmas tree at this time, a little love is not too much to ask.
I received the following little "about me" survey in my inbox the other day, and it's unlike one that I've ever seen before... so I figured, why not?
1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping presents is one of my favourite things. I'd definitely use a gift bag for anything awkwardly shaped, but wrapping is tops.
2. Real tree or Artificial? I'm not a fan of cutting down a tree (and remembering to water it and whatnot) to enjoy it for only a short time. I'd rather let those natural beauties grow in the soil, and embrace my fake tree (hey, they both leave pine needles all over the house!)
3. When do you put up the tree? Usually, last week of November/first week of December, for optimal enjoyment.
4. When do you take the tree down? After holidays and holiday parties are done.
5. Do you like eggnog? I didn't as a child, but it's one of those things that has grown on me.
6. Favorite gift received as a child? Probably either my cabbage patch doll, or my pink barbie tent (barbie-sized, not person-sized). When you were a kid, almost everything was The. Best. Present. Ever. Besides, I don't believe I ever received the standard ugly-sweater gift.
7. Hardest person to buy for? Dad. He never wants anything, which is sweet... but we can't very well buy something for everyone else and leave him out.
8. Easiest person to buy for? Kaye. Hands down.
9. Do you have a nativity scene? No.
10. Mail or email Christmas cards? I love real mail.
11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? My friend Sarah, who sent this to me, had wrote "there's no such thing as a bad gift" and I was almost going to agree. However, there is one gift that I almost received that is the absolute most hilarious gift ever. Kiki, my other little sister, was notorious for telling people what she wanted for Christmas and then going out to get it herself. One year, we were making fun of her for this on Christmas day and she got so peeved at us, that she took back her "present" to each of us. She went over to our stockings and yanked out the one, individually wrapped (in tin foil) Lifesaver candy that she had put there. Lifesaver candy that we had gotten in a storybook of candy from another family Christmas. She totally ruined Christmas. Ha.
12. Favorite Christmas Movie? Charlie Brown Christmas, White Christmas
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? This year, I started early. Whenever I saw something that I knew would be perfect for someone, I picked it up. Even if it was July. By keeping a box of gifts for people in my closet, it took the stress out of holiday shopping for sure.
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? No.
15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Turkey. Turnip. Ha.
16. Lights on the tree? Yes. Even better if they are the ones built right into the tree so you don't have to fight strings of lights. I wish...
17. Favorite Christmas song? Far too many. I have multiple Christmas mixes I listen to, and I love them all.
18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? When I lived at home, I liked to stay there on Christmas. Now, wherever I go, traveling is pretty much in the cards.
19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer's? Yes. Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen, Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen. Also, Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer.
20. Angel on the tree top or a star? A star this year. It was always this Mary and Baby Jesus ornament at home on the tree (until recently).
21. Open presents on Christmas Eve or morning? Christmas morning. After breakfast is eaten and dishes are done.
22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? People who forget about the whole spirit-of-giving, love-one-another aspect to the holidays and become selfish. Grinches.
23. Favorite Ornament theme or color? I'm not particular. I like a nice mix of big and small ornaments though.
24. Favorite for Christmas dinner? Still turkey/turnip.
25. What do you want for Christmas this year? My problem has been that I don't really "want" anything. People keep asking me and I have no idea what to tell them. I have everything I need. World peace?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The REAL city that never sleeps

Even though we slept a lot (because we're old and lame like that), it seems as though Vegas is the real city that never sleeps. A city full of stimuli and decadence. High-end designer shopping, lots of food, drinking on the streets, smoking in the casinos, gambling non-stop, the lights, the noise. It was interesting to experience, but I am glad to be home (though it feels like I'm going through nicotine withdrawl).

We walked from the Imperial Palace to Mandalay Bay on a 6-hour round-trip trek through casinos, reveling in the fact that I was able to get a sunburn at a time of year when I'm usually immune. All that walking is enough to make your body ache, let me tell you.

For our anniversary, Boy had bought me [us] tickets to see the Beatles' "Love" Cirque de Soleil while we were in the city. The costumes, the dancing, the special effects, the acrobatics, the music... it was all absolutely stunning. I highly recommend it.

We gambled -- sometimes winning, sometimes losing, but never very much of either. We took in the sights, traveled to the top of the Eiffel Tower, and had a good time on our first real "vacation" together. A trip that was purely designed for pleasure, not to see friends (though we did) or family or fulfill any kind of agenda. It was glorious.

Also, side note: it's weird to see Christmas decorations all over the place where there's not only no snow, but it's not even remotely cold.


Thursday evening, I was packing my bag for Vegas, talking to the Boy who was lounging on my bed when just past him, through the window... I saw this.

It was insanity to see a bright orange ball of fire soaring through the sky, let me tell you.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Eff YOU, Expedia

The travel itinerary, as of today (four days after the great flight debauchle of 2008) says that the plane we were to be on left Edmonton at 8:40 a.m.

When we were at the airport on Friday, we were told our flight didn't exist. This was after we were told by the airline (Air Canada) that they didn't even deal with Expedia in the first place. The airline that we were to fly on (we were directed here by the folks at Air Canada) was United, a company Expedia said they didn't work with (they told us it was US Airways, US Airways confirmed that Expedia is on drugs).

After calling Expedia's customer service line, we found out we were booked onto a flight at 6:22 a.m. Customer service apologized profusely, admitted their error, and offered to reimburse our flight change. Then they gave us flights for Air Canada, which we could not book because Air Canada doesn't deal with Expedia (hello, CONFUSION).

Boy called Expedia back to try to sort out the flight thing. Again, customer service admitted their mistake and apologized. Then, offered to put us through to the flight people to get us booked on a flight right away (out of Expedia's pocket). Awesome.

Not so much. The flight people proceeded to tell us that it was our fault. That they sent an e-mail saying that the flight had been changed and it's our own fault because we didn't contact Expedia to confirm the change like we should have. I was pretty sure that I hadn't seen anything telling me to call Expedia.

Boy spent much time bickering back and forth with the Expedia agent, who refused to give him over to a supervisor or manager. As he was passed around from agent to agent, telling us we were in the wrong and we were trying to screw over Expedia, all we had was the itinerary we printed out pre-flight that said we were to leave at 8:40 a.m. We didn't print out the previous e-mails discussion a flight change, it's only reasonable that our latest itinerary would reflect any changes. After being apologized to by customer service, these flight people were being asshats. And they blamed us for not knowing that they had two systems in place to e-mail people (um, how were we to know?) and that we should have known something was wrong because it takes more than 40 minutes to transfer planes (I've transfered at the Winnipeg airport in under 10 minutes).

They didn't want to help us out, everyone in the airport knew of our issue with Expedia. A little old lady on her way to La Guardia, commented on the Boy's patience, strength and how Expedia was being absolutely unreasonable (she could overhear the conversation). So Boy paid the fee to change planes, in addition to a fee for a checked bag (pardon me?), and we told Expedia we'd deal with them later. We were frustrated and wanted to get on with our vacation (even if it was going to be five hours late).

Turns out, we were right. We didn't need to confirm anything. Direct from the e-mail from Expedia when they changed our flight time:

Dear Traveler,
We have received notice from Air Canada that they have:
* Made minor changes to your itinerary
This change could mean a difference in departure or arrival times and/or a change in flight number on one or more of your flight segments. has accepted the updated itinerary, reflected below, on your behalf. It is not necessary to call us to confirm this change.

This updated itinerary was no where to be found outside of this e-mail. Logging into my account online provided the updated return flight, but not the flight to Vegas. It said we were to leave at 8:40 a.m.

I will never book anything through Expedia again. It was a ridiculous hassle to deal with them, and I don't really like breaking down in the airport because they're being jerks and it's early in the morning and dear-God-I-haven't-even-had-my-coffee-yet. I don't know what I would have done without the Boy. Well, probably cried a lot more than I did.

The flight home was better, but not by much. US Airways = an airline that makes Air Canada look good. Yes, they make the airline that overbooked my flight home for Christmas, bumped me from that flight, made me hang out in the airport for 8 hours on the possibility I might get on a flight other than the one my luggage was on, look good.

A broken plane, waiting around for them to fix broken plane, de-planing, re-planing on a different plane, no beverage or snack service, the least comfortable seats ever, no movie, and you have to pay to check a bag? Insanity.

Flights were bad, vacation was pretty good. But that's another blog. One that I'll write after I upload some pictures to share.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Hey baby let's go to Vegas

My computer made me reset my password this morning. Now, everytime I attempt to do something, it inquires as to who I am. Oh, okay, it's still you... sure, come on in.

I have been drinking entirely too much coffee this morning. I am fidgety and vibrating and can not concentrate much on anything at all. It most certainly is not because I am excited to go on a little mini-vacay tomorrow, no, no.

A girlfriend and I went to a wine tasting last night. So delicious. Hazelnut chocolate, delicious fresh bread, Applewood Cheddar, Parmesan Reggiano, an Asiago so young we had to take the diaper off it before we cut it (seriously, that's how it was described) and Australian wines. I need to go to the Barossa Valley, now.

While I didn't buy any of the wines that we tasted, I did pick up a couple (by a couple, I mean four) bottles for my wine rack. Though, sadly, they were out of my beloved Henschke (also from my new favourite valley in the world). Tear.

Tomorrow morning, I'm leaving at the crack of dawn (before even!) for a trip to Vegas with the Boy and one of my oldest friends, her hubby and some groomsmen from their wedding. Thank you Expedia! I promise I won't get married, and if I win a fortune, I promise to share (as long as you leave a comment so I know where to send your cut).

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


I get a little summary of the top daily news in my mailbox every morning. I love reading the newspaper, the real print-version newspaper, but I a) value my sleep so have no time, b) can't validate spending money on a subscription when I can find the info for free. So, one of the big news items for today, apparently, is this.

The Collins English dictionary held a nationwide contest for new words to be included in their dictionary. Now, I prefer the Canadian Oxford as my dictionary of choice (it's so much more than just a dictionary, it's a fabulous reference book -- I asked for mine for Christmas one year, no joke), and their decision of "new word" validated my choice.

Their decision, was the "word" meh.

"Internet forums and e-mail are playing a big part in formalizing the spellings of vocal interjections like these. A couple of other examples would be hmm and heh, which are both now ubiquitous online and in e-mails. It shows people are increasingly writing in a register somewhere in between spoken and written English."

Yes, meh, hrm and heh are vocal interjections. They are sounds. Spelled out because you can't relay noise through a computer screen/text message. By no means are these words. I would never use "meh" in a sentence. You have a so-so day and someone asks how you are? A "meh" and shrug of the shoulders will suffice. Saying "The Canadian election was so meh" makes absolutely no sense to me. LAME! The Canadian election was LAME!

Even by judging from the origins of "meh", I would not call it a word.

The naming of "meh" as winner of the nationwide contest has generated international media attention, partly because the term first gained widespread usage after it was featured in an episode of The Simpsons in which Lisa and Bart, glued to the television set, listlessly utter "meh" to rebuff Homer's offer of a day trip.

Expression of disinterest, yes. Legitimate word, no.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The sweat on our balls is totally worth it

I've been the team captain of our soccer team for the last few seasons. The last captain fell off the face of the earth, and so I stepped up (because I am a sucker, a little touched in the head, or both). Soccer is how I made a lot of friends when I made the leap from Ontario to Alberta. It's also how I met the Boy. So maybe I stepped up because it holds a special place in my cold, cold heart and I wanted to make sure that the fun continued.

Being a team captain is not a fun gig. You have all of the responsibility (which really just means you get screwed when people don't pay their fees). People depend on you to tell them where you're playing and when (because it's hard to use the internet). And if anything ever goes wrong, or people aren't having as much fun as they had hoped they would, you get to mediate and fix things.

This was our first season of indoor soccer. In the past, our focus has been solely on summer soccer and less about playing inside when it's cold. And let me tell you, this has been my favourite season yet.

We've played a lot of really good teams, but our game has improved incredibly fast. We have a lot of new players, and the comradarie, sportsmanship and cheering on our team is second-to-none. We only won one game this season, but we are one of the only teams that has full "spirit" points. We are a fun team. Even when others get rough, or start trying to get around the rules, the way we play doesn't change.

That's probably why the organization has gifted us as the "Team of the Week". It's kind of a big deal, since this is for all sports the organization runs and not just indoor soccer. Also a big deal because it means a hefty gift certificate for beer money.
Go Sweaty Balls, Go!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Real Mary hits Edmonton

My good friend Mary and her lovely hubby were in town this weekend to visit with the Edmonton contingent of the Western PR crew.

We suffered heinous service at 100/Hundred on Friday night. Bimboed staff were flitting around the restaurant in their extra-long tank tops sans pants, though it seemed as though our bimbo was no where to be seen. The food was great, the service was poor. Thankfully, we got on the discussion of "If we were the New Kids [on the Block], where would be we right now?" [The much-loved boy band is in Edmonton for their tour stop at Rexall.] Inquiring minds didn't lead us too far, but it lead to a discussion about favourite members of the boy band and how Donnie was the one all the trashy girls like(d). We concluded we needed a little help from the master, and wandered across the street to Sherlock Holmes' pub, hoping to at least get a few tips from Watson.

Saturday night was a flood of rum, vodka and pink cupcakes as a pre-birthday for Ms. Mary herself. The night was split between drinks at Roomie's and my downtown condo and a pub down the street where we did some shots and drank beer in bulk. At 5:30 a.m., we finally called it a night.

Yesterday, after much complaining and a lot of water, Roomie and I pulled ourselves together to head to the Jubilee to see Hairspray. The show was fun, hilarious and made us want to sing and dance. The Jube's new parkade leaves something to be desired, however, as it seems they didn't account for the fact that all vehicles would be coming (and later, going) at the same time. If you get the chance to see Broadway Across Canada put on the show, I highly recommend it.

Friday, November 14, 2008

How Canada plans to deal with the failing economy...

... sell the CN Tower!

My good friend, Large David, sent this article to me last night. We then discussed how ridiculous it is that the feds would a) sell off these pieces of Canadiana to private companies (ahem, see the Rogers Centre, formally known as the Skydome) and b) that they would do so to bail out the constantly failing auto industry.

With globalization as it is, there's this whole we-can-get-things-from-other-places-rather-than-constantly-bail-out-our-own-failing-companies thing. Maybe we should invest in opportunities and business ventures which make us money (research! nanotechnology!) and scrap those that we're constantly sinking money into to no avail. Crown corporations and assets make the government money. In this difficult times, is it really worth selling these revenue builders off for a couple (million/billion) bucks in the short term?

We also discussed how sad we both are that Gerard Kennedy will not be running for Liberal leadership. That he's the only one with a decent head about him regarding policy, who has the possibility to unite the fallout from the Martin versus Chretien days. Further, he put in his time in Western Canada, giving the Libs the chance to bridge the West to Ottawa (since Calgary's Prime Minister Harper has failed so miserably at that).

I'd vote for Layton and his creepy mustache over voting for Iggy (or Bob Rae, even).

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Anyone there?

Roomie and I have been receiving some strange phone calls lately. It's nothing out of the ordinary, just sounds like the auto-dialer from the telemarketer forgot to connect us with someone trying to sell us something. We signed up for the national do-not-call list and everything.

Apparently, it takes a bit of time for that list to kick in.

In the meantime, why not Report Annoying Callers?

Check the caller ID, and either check online to find out who it is and if other people have had the same problems, or comment on something strange that other people might run into. The website is easy to use, with a box to type in the phone number right at the top. Others can provide tips on how to deal with your strange numbers, if they are something to worry about (mine aren't, but hey, you never know).

[Mis]adventures in dating

Since Kaye has been on a dating binge lately, it’s been making me look back on my own dating [mis]adventures.

This morning, as I was crossing the street on my way to work, I spotted a guy who looked so much like one of these hilarious dating disasters I was immediately transported back to high school.

I like my boys nerdy. I don’t think it’s a surprise to anyone. But this boy had recently traded in his coke-bottle glasses for contact lenses and had the bluest most beautiful eyes my teenaged heart had ever seen. He was smitten with me, and because I had nothing better to do, I gave him a chance.

We didn’t do a whole lot other than hang around while waiting for our respective parental units to pick us up from choir practice. We may or may not have grabbed coffee with a group of other people at Timmy’s, we met up at a party where we went with separate groups of people. Usual high school things. We went on our first, and last, real date one evening to see a movie at the small theatre in town.

The J.Lo. flop The Cell was playing and we were the only people in the theatre. About ten minutes into the movie, the lights went on and remained that way for the remainder of the “film”. It was awkward to say the least. No funny business took place. I was a goody-goody book worm, virginal and pure.

But that’s not what he told his friends.

In a small town, in a high school where everyone knows everyone, it’s probably not smart to brag to your friends about something that never happened. Telling your friends that the girl you took out was all over you, and detailing the dirty things you wish she had done, is so not cool. Needless to say, I found out about his lies and refused to go out with him again.

That’s when the real fun started.

He didn’t want to accept that we were over, while I refused to acknowledge that we had even started. One night, after choir, he handed me a stack of loose leaf papers. Handwritten journal entries. About me. Only with my name painted over in Wite-Out. Also, anywhere that he had written “date”, he painted over and replaced it with “meeting”. I don’t know what he attempted to prove by giving me these private letters to himself, but they were absolutely hilarious.

And I showed them to all my friends.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Tell me more, tell me more (like does he have a car?)

One of the best parts about being not only an older sister, but an older sister in a couple, is hearing the adventures of the baby's dating life. Though dating is not always a fun endeavor, it's fun to be told swoon-worthy stories of cute boys and adventures with them.

After waking up yesterday to a text message telling me to check my Facebook mailbox for details, I've been looking forward to the "what's next" of Kaye's dating life. Ahhh, the excitement. So far, nerdy engineering boy + Guitar Hero = much potential. I should know, that's how my relationship started out (though it was Rock Band).

All I have to offer Kaye in return for her stories, is this article. These women are doing amazing, very important work. Even more important is that they're doing it without judging. Their concern is for the health of these women during their pregnancies and the health of their babies.

Using $95,000 from the Public Health Agency of Canada, a part-time nurse and two street-smart outreach workers find homeless, pregnant women. They help them get medical care and test them for syphilis to prevent the sexually transmitted disease from making their babies sick.

It's a very interesting, very insightful article. I fully recommend it.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Why dating blows...

...and why it's a world I never want to ever go back to (that, and you know, I love the Boy).

Spawned from a conversation today with a good friend.

This is why dating blows. It's not so much the meeting people or even the games as it is all the little hits that your ego takes while people reject you. You know they're not the right person because of it and each hit is only tiny but they add up and make it hard to be strong. It's why I appreciate the great people in my life, like you, because they make it easier to stand tall. I'll find my man but I'm not worried about it because I'm not alone.

Each little hit builds up to something so big that makes you question everything about your self and wonder if you'll ever find that Prince Charming. It has the ability to take you from a strong, confident, intelligent woman to a babbling maniac who constantly complains that no man will ever love you. It creates cat ladies. It makes you feel like you have no one to depend on, even when you don't need anyone to depend on but yourself.

It's why you need good friends to remind you how fabulous you are.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Speak out Edmonton! (All others, sign the petition)

I received this poster, and the information that follows, this afternoon from my friend Z. I believe I've commented on Omar Khadr before, and if this is something that you believe in, please act by either signing the petition or attending the event on Saturday (or both!).

Z's boss, Satya Das, was approached by Omar Khadr's lawyer, Dennis Edney, to put together a petition to bring Omar home. Satya is doing this pro bono.

If you do not know who Omar is, watch this.

This petition is not about whether Omar is innocent or guilty. This is about requesting that the Canadian government bring him home to Canada as soon as possible so that Canada can deal with the situation appropriately. It's about human rights. Protecting the same human rights all Canadians share, Omar included.

Here's the petition.

I'm going to hell, but the image in my head was just too much

Dr. Grinch says: I was just out on my longboard for 15 mins
Dr. Grinch says: It's beautiful out today
Dr. Grinch says: I was in a Tshirt
Dr. Grinch says: I rode past some lady out walking and she goes "Good For You!" in a really excited tone
Dr. Grinch says: I felt like a retarded kid she just saw mopping the floor at McDonalds
Elle says: Oh, I literally laughed out loud right there.
Elle says: It was a girlish giggle, you'd have enjoyed it.
Elle says: The kind where you're trying not to laugh, but it just bubbles right out.
Dr. Grinch says: I'm glad you find my seemingly "Life Goes On" features amusing

Dream on!

Crouched over my desk, a pile of loose-leaf papers covering it's surface, re-writing stories and poems, both those I wrote and those that were my favourites, I had grand aspirations that someday my name would be on the best-sellers list. Even though I was too afraid to let anyone read what I wrote, other than my grade 10 English writing teacher, I wanted to be a writer someday.

It was only yesterday, on my walk home from work that I realized that the title on my business cards is exactly that. I am a writer. Certainly not the type who will ever reach any kind of best-sellers list. Not even the type who gets their name published on what comes out of their pen, or keyboard keys. But I do get paid a living to write.

I know now that my skills aren't ones that would lead me to published works. That I would rather work in a publishing house editing the great works of others than write them myself.

Regardless, it's a good thing to have your young-girl dreams come true.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


My friend James found himself in Cincinnati this fall, working on the Obama campaign and working to get people to the polls.

He sent us a message telling us that Obama is the closet thing to a political movement we have had in many years (kind of sad, kind of scary, kind of good). This campaign has been pretty unbelievable. Everyone from fashion designers showing their support by creating designs that support Obama, to Oprah Winfrey and other celebrities, to Facebook and social networking. It was a campaign that showed that the old ways of campaigning no longer work. That a big wardrobe budget will not win you votes. That text messaging is a tool to reach the masses. That you need more than to show your political stripes, get talked up by your partisan friends and rely on the votes your party has gotten for years. You need to be a visionary and a leader. You need to have the ability to pull Americans from every colour, every creed, every background together and show the world that we can change.

James said this nation, continent, world really needs something to rally behind.

America has found it. And it's not just something for them. It is something for all of us. Something that, during this time of economic turmoil, conflict and uncertainty, the world can believe in.

People have blamed our generation for being apathetic and this American election proved otherwise. We just haven't had a leader we could rally behind. This changes everything. Our grandparents saw so much advancement in society. Airplanes, telephones and televisions, the Internet, the vote for women, the fight for human rights. I'm proud to be part of the generation that saw the election of the first African-American President of the United States of America. Not elected for the colour of his skin, but for the reason that he has the ability to bring everyone together.

Obama's amazing, inspirational, very Presidential, victory speech from last night.

Why can't Canada find a leader like this?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Old friends in the new city

Technically, the city is no longer new to me. I have been here since July 12, 2006. My health card has long since been an Albertan one, my driver’s permit was traded in earlier this year. There’s not a whole lot which still screams “Ontario” about me. Not unless you talk to my friends anyway.

Then, it’s the slightly southern accent (from southern Ontario? Personally, I don’t get it), the use of 2-4 (as in a 2-4 of beer, or May 2-4), celebrating Pancake Tuesday, chicken souvlaki from a trailer, tales of university days gone by, a longing of maple trees, Mustang pride (see related: love of Andy Fantuz), knowing that a snow storm is not a snow storm until you can’t see your hand in front of your face… oh, and those old Ontario friends.

One of those old Ontario friends, from my Western PR days, is coming to visit with her hubby in a mere nine sleeps. Mary, from Real Mary Tales, is making the trek to see the Edmonton contingent of the old PR crew.

This tall, buxom blonde and I used to get into a world of trouble. Upon breaking the news to her about my pending desertion to the Canadian prairies, she thought for a second and then exclaimed, “Well, we need to go out every day you have left, so my liver is sick of you by then!” We only lasted for a couple of nights, but created enough laughs and debauchery to last a while.

Since that, the week my liver has been trying hopelessly to forget, Mary has visited Edmonton on one whirlwind visit, and Suz and I visited London on another… to celebrate Mary’s birthday last year around this time.

It should be a marvelous reunion; I can hardly wait to experience, first-hand, more stories for Mary to blog about!

Conquest or Cooperation event almost full!

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Cherry on top of the Chocolate Sundae that is my life...

The baby sister is someone I can't wait to talk to. She's brilliant, hilarious, adorable (and adorably nerdy) and knows just what to say to make me feel a bit better when I'm down.

Also, this weekend marked the officially one year anniversary of the Boy's and my first date. He's pretty special that one. The one boy in the world who has the ability to break my little heart.

On the LRT this morning on the way to work, a little boy shouted "Go, Eskimos, Go!" when we passed the Stadium. Immediately, I flashed back to time spent in our seats at the 50 yard line on Friday, doing the same thing. With more beer. Another Halloween party later, and he's still the one I want to be with.

Even if he makes me cry sometimes.


Halloween has passed for yet another year, but this is by far the scariest thing to come out of this weekend.

An Edmonton filmmaker charged with first-degree murder in a case that shares similarities to the movie he was making and the serial killer television show Dexter will appear in court on Monday.

On his Facebook page, Twitchell is revealed to be a huge fan of the Showtime program Dexter, which follows the exploits of Dexter Morgan, a blood-spatter expert for the Miami police who also leads a secret life as a serial killer.