Friday, October 27, 2006


Wednesday night I joined this dryland training group for cross-country skiing.

As my billions of regular readers know, the only exercise I've done in some time is letting giardia strengthen my intestinal muscles, which were hypermobile and contracting vigorously every day for a few weeks there. I'm pretty sure my intestines could lift a truck right now, just like Superman when he was a boy.

(Photo from this website.)

Anway, my intestines were so busy working out that I wasn't really able to exercise the rest of me, and then there was that metronidazole party, and so I've been feeling pretty weak.

So coming out of that illness and the associated four-five weeks of mostly lying down or sprinting to the toilet, I figured what would make most sense is to throw myself into a two hour intense strength and cardio session with a group of supremely fit superhero types who have already been in this training group for two months.

We spent two hours lunging up hills, ski-striding up hills, hopping on one foot up hills, and walking on our hands (wheelbarrow style, with a buddy) up hills (or in my case, collapsing in a flush-cheeked heap after about ten hand-steps). Then we did brutal ab crunches and chin ups and deadlifts and squats. Then we walked on hot coals and ate handfuls of acid and slashed our flesh with rusty machetes and beat our skulls with heavy iron pipes.

Predictably, now I have DOMS. Last night my hamstrings were feeling a little hamstrung, so I rubbed this amazing stuff into them and applied the wondrous Thermaphore, the Cadillac of heating pads.

And Saturday morning, I go back for more!

Want to come? The rusty machetes thing is my favourite part, you'll love it. Afterward, I'm sure we'll do something civilized like go for brunch.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

sisters brainstorming

Goose: for halloween
I think I'm going to go as the ghost of unfinished knitting projects. I need as many unfinished knitting projects as possible, to wear all over, socks, mitts, half-sweaters etc.

Roo: oh that is GREAT!

Goose: i need to find unfinished knitting
i myself don't have much.

Roo: no, I have none
but I am sure whitehorse is teeming with unfinished projects
the thing is, will people risk letting them get wrecked as a costume?
you will have to devise a system to prevent them from unravelling

Goose: yes
you are right
can you think of another idea
i like being the ghost of something
like the ghost of all my ex-boyfriends
i would just tack objects of theirs, photos, things they gave me, all over me

Roo: ha ha

Goose: but m wouldn't like it

Roo: no

Goose: so...
the ghost of implies something sad, unfinished, heavy with emotion
that's why knitting works

Roo: yes

Goose: I could be the period princess
and tack tampons and pads all over me

Roo: you could do the ghost of half-earned brownie badges and drag around a scrapbook, magnifying glass, bowl of dough

Goose: oh!

Roo: yes

Goose: that would take too much work but is a great idea
the brownie thing
that is the idea
for sure
i would need to dig up an old brownie outfit too

Roo: you could dress as the ghost of the woman you would have become if you hadn't turned to a life of booze and crime

Goose: I really like the knitting one though, because i could also put patterns up all over me
it is just an A1 costume

Roo: yes

Goose: what if i went to the sally-ann, bought sweaters, socks, hats, and unravelled them
stuck needles through them
pinned them up on me
that's what I'll do
thanks for being there in my time of problem solving need

Roo: you could dress as the ghost of your childhood dreams, and be an astronaut-fairyprincess-doctor-teacher-actress

Goose: yes
that makes for a good theme party

Roo: that's a great idea (the sally-ann solution)
the ghost of your child hood dreams?

Goose: everyone comes as their childhood dream

Roo: yes, dress as what you thought you wanted to be

Goose: like an alter-ego party

Roo: I would dress in a jewel encrusted gown and order people around

Goose: shit, all you have to do is stick on the jewels

Roo: shit, I'm half way there!!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

I would have started with lasers, eight o'clock, Day One!

See it for yourself of course, the best part of the whole freaking movie:

Now I don't know what character flaw this indicates in me, but I found most of this movie irritating, except the parts with the Evil Genius, and maybe one or two other parts. There were lots of brilliant ideas to be sure, many of which I think were better developed, and executed more effectively and cohesively in Gilliam's masterpiece Brazil. (Which I almost fanatically love.)

But Time Bandits, where to start with the causes of irritation? That poor little buck-toothed British kid, Kevin, has to protest or cry out so many times in this movie, and the best he can manage even in the most dramatic and intense scenes is a soft whimpery plea. He is just so ineffectual.

Kevin (whispering pathetically, in a voice you might use to coax a frightened cat out from under the porch): "Please sir, Mr. Agamemnon, don't leave me behind (!!!)"

What happens next: Agamemnon turns and helps little Kevin up onto his steed, and they ride off together to share in a glorious victory/welcome party back in the city.

What should really happen next: Agamemnon turns, makes his horse rear, drives a spear through Kevin's foot, stonily rides off into the desert in a cloud of dust.

And those dwarves/little people, what was with the one who kept eating live chickens and rats? And the one who wore a spaghetti strainer on his head. Oooh, those dwarves, so wacky, so half-animal/half-man, so "can I dress them up in little capes and bonnets?" (Nooo! The costume department already did that!) I'm all for Gilliam's madnesses, but usually it's a little better thought-through than that. It seems a bit cheap to bank so heavily on playing up the visual novelty of the little people just to help create the sense of a fantastical world.

And what's with Kevin and the dwarves getting nervous (only nervous!) when the Evil Genius kills the cowboys, the archers, the knights in armour, then breaking down and sobbing uncontrollably when one of their guys gets crushed? (Too emotionally inconsistent for me.)

And what the hell with Kevin's (albeit horrible) parents getting unceremoniously offed at the end? (I mean, they're unspeakably awful, but don't tell me this whiney little kid is now so hardened by his time-travelling adventures that it doesn't even mildly freak him out to be an orphan standing in front of his family home that has just been razed to the ground in a fire. Perhaps he is emotionally spent from mourning the fake death of his dwarf colleague, see earlier para?)

I don't know where I'm going with this. I suppose this means it's time for Ms. Banjeroo Grumpypants to go to bed.

Monday, October 23, 2006

"Here is my gerbil, Gross Domestic Product of Brazil"

Two terribly amusing links:

Why Search Engines Are So Crap

...and of course, as my friend Amber says, "This guy is the ripened fruit of mutated, repressed German perfectionist eroticism!! Hooray!" because he writes about his fantasies of wrapping Roy Orbison in cling-wrap. (But I'm pretty sure it's a spoof of German fantasies, by the same guy.)

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Nacho Libra

Here's the other new niece, very shortly after birth, and so still cute in that squished koala/old-man kind of way:

My astrology-obsessed friend (she's taking courses and everything) did this little one's chart already (at my request), and at first glance reported:

Personally, I waver between A) being totally fascinated by astrology and marvelling at how accurate it is (seriously, I don't mean newspaper horoscopes, I mean the actual crazy specific chart things with cusps and houses and ascendents and is Pluto an asteroid now? etc.), and 2) thinking how on earth can this possibly work, it's all absolute bunk.

What do you think? Cool metaphysical tool and eerily effective method to analyze personality types and potentials? OR TOTAL FRIKKIN' HOGWARSH?!

*Clearly she knows that CAPS LOCK IS CRUISE CONTROL FOR COOL. Note also that my astrology obsessed friend is Libra, IS in fact very pretty, and has this theory that all Librans are beautiful, which she says is because Librans are ruled by Venus etc. etc.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

nieces are nices

As of this morning at 6:38 AM, I have another niece! She is a long and supremely cute little noodle, almost two feet long, and JUST OVER TEN POUNDS. My sister squirted her out in about two hours. I guess that averages to about one foot an hour, but I'm told it doesn't really work that way.

As soon as I have pictures, I'll post one.

In the meantime, here's one of my other incredibly beautiful niece, almost three weeks old, helping my brother study for law school:

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Garth Turner gets Dooced!

Canadians, go watch the interview between Garth Turner and Green Party Leader, Elizabeth May, from October 17: MP TV. Garth Turner was the Conservative MP for Halton, (a suburb, essentially, of Toronto).

Today he was kicked out of the party because of what he wrote on his blog (aka dooced, derived from the experience of this woman). Apparently he's been too critical of his party -- and you can read for yourself, he's pretty open about his thoughts and his willingness to work hard for his voters. (I'm not saying he's perfect, I just respect his general style, what I've seen of it.)

Politics and religion can often sadly have something nasty in common: once you belong to the group, you're supposed to stop asking questions, speak only in memorized lines from the book (or official platform), and help keep a white-knuckle grip on power.

But Turner's asking a serious and important question, and good for him for doing it: what ARE the Tories going to do about the environment? Give lip service and non-specific emissions targets while essentially kow-towing to Alberta oil money, or are they going to implement an effective plan that helps the environment and the economy?

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

gearing up for november

Because I'm the cruddiest most inconsistent poster in all the land, I'm going to do this:

(inter)National Blog Posting Month! (Since I'm in Canader, eh, and I'm pretty sure people from all over will try this. Or do we mean the elastic and ethereal nation of the Intarwebs?)

Rik and I were even discussing the possibility of doing a diablog. Yes, you read correctly. It's positively diablogical! (god, I am so sorry.) Er, the idea is we'd essentially correspond through our blogs. Brilliant? Or moronic! Well, we might not actually get around to doing it so, whatever. He still hasn't made his fantastic blue-tooth mobile phone parrot, which is a crying shame. As soon as he tells me where it is, I'll link to it.

Monday, October 16, 2006

back to our regularly scheduled programming

Well, the guts are all better. Still waiting for the lab results to confirm, but whatever was feasting on my intestinal epithelium seems to be gone. The drug is finally out of my system too, which is good because I HATED IT.

But here's something I LOVE and remember watching as a kid:

I'd credit the guy whose blog I first found it on but I can't recall where it was...

"Well what do you expect for SIX dollars!?"

Friday, October 13, 2006

the up side of 1500 mg of apo-metronidazole every day for a week

Yeah, there are the sucky side effects like dizziness, fatigue, and a horrible metallic taste in your mouth, but the up side is that you can eat raw cookie dough without the least bit of worry about stomach upset.

(Salmonella? Metronidazole gives salmonella a beating so bad it wants to crawl back into the ovaries of an infected hen.)

Thursday, October 12, 2006

things you will never read on this website

1. Personal details about my love life
2. Stream-of-consciousness agonizing about my personal decisions/feelings
3. Anything about how to fry up some delicious brains

You will, however, learn that red squirrels only have a drop of breast milk in each teat, and that it tastes "pretty bitter". Or so I've heard. From my friend Graham.

(Come on, tell me you could spend an entire summer milking wild red squirrels for field work on squirrel reproduction and NEVER be tempted to taste it, not even a tiny eensy drop, not even just out of life-loving curiosity? Not to make yogourt or cheese out of it or anything.)

Monday, October 09, 2006


Well it's not official but I'm pretty sure I have giardiasis, caused by these little guys:

(picture courtesy of this nice little article about giardia in Yosemite, and shamelessly used without permission)

Why am I pretty sure? Partly because I did in fact ingest untreated water up in Alaska and the Yukon (so the likely cause exists), and because one of my sister's friends who went to the same cabin also got it (suggesting perhaps that it is in the lake water, and I might have ingested it when swimming).

Also, and perhaps more to the point, I have most of the symptoms, including and primarily painful cramping every time I eat, persistent nausea, crushing fatigue, ballistic diarrhea, and some of the smelliest gas that ever singed your nostril hairs. Don't worry kiddo, I've held them in when you were around.

I'm horrified and yet compelled (in equal measure) to report that there have been a few documented instances of accidental "sharting" (well, documented NOW anyway), which when first confessed in an email to a friend earned this response:




Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaand fair enough. Happily all these "instances" were minor (no mop required) and occurred at home where they could be dealt with hygienically and promptly. (Run to back yard, strip pants off, douse underwear with lighter fluid and ignite.)

Over the last two weeks, things got progressively worse, so that I could no longer say "I think I MIGHT have a problem". (Crapping my pants involuntarily was definitely a clue.) I made an appointment to see a doctor this week, but a sensible friend of mine forced me to go to a walk-in clinic first thing Saturday morning, which was a really smart move. I was prescribed some hard-core antibiotics, and since Saturday at 11 AM the physically palpable battle between the protozoa and the metronidazole has been waging in my intestines.

The little write up that comes with the drug suggests that although the side effects can be harsh (and are alarmingly similar to the symptoms of hosting a parasite, including fatigue, nausea, and diarrhea), "your doctor has prescribed this medication because the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects". So far, I've got the continued fatigue and the "metallic taste" (which means that the turkey dinner was ever so slightly like sucking a nail), but the other symptoms have greatly diminished, THANK GOD.

I'll let you know how it goes.

spoiler warning

My younger cousin and his girlfriend were visiting this weekend for (Canadian) Thanksgiving. Although it was gorgeous weather and I normally would have been outside with my cousin, I had some good reasons to stay inside and rest instead, which I will write about soon.

When my cousin came home, I mentioned I'd watched Fahrenheit 9/11. "How'd it end?" he asked me, grinning. "Did they impeach him or what?"

UPDATE: Thanks for the spelling correction. I'm a professional editor! Yay!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

how's crispin glover?

Remember Biff from Back to the Future?

And how IS Crispin "my cat can eat a whole watermelon" Glover? Who knows? I once saw one of his performance art pieces in Vancouver, and it was, predictably, spectacularly odd...

And my favourite movie scene of his, ever, is in Wild at Heart. As "Cousin Dell", he is chopping up a million sandwiches in the kitchen in the middle of the night and -- oh Happy Day everyone! I just found the clip!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

My new niece is perfect in every way

And as my astrology-obsessed (and Libra) roommate asked, "All Libras are beautiful. Have you ever met an unattractive Libra?"

(Well, sadly, yes, but this little Libra is GORGEOUS.)

Welcome to the world, little one! Congratulations to her mummy and daddy, who I love very much!!

(Born September 30)