31.12.01 3:00 PM | nine hours to go ]

I've spent the last few days cleaning my room, off and on around a whole lot of tv watching and hanging with friends. By the time I leave tonight, it should be exactly the way I want it, so tomorrow when I open my eyes on the new year ahead, it will be all clean and cosy and comforting. I have this strange belief that if I start the year with my room clean and organized and the way I want it, the coming year will also unfold the way I want. I know it's a little odd, but it works for me.

And I only have two New Year's resolutions: remember to floss on a regular basis again, and get my cat to the point where I can brush her teeth. She's been getting pretty good with the nail clipping, so I figure it's only a matter of time before she'll let me into her mouth with a toothbrush and toothpaste. And then I won't have to face her kitten breath when she wakes me up in the morning by sitting on my neck and licking my face.

The flossing? That's just so I don't have to lie to the dentist anymore.


30.12.01 10:55 AM | sunday tv - not so good ]

It's a nice feeling not leaving the house for 24 hours, just cocooning yourself in the warmth and comfort ...

... until you realize that you have no food in the house, which brings about the realization that you didn't actually eat anything yesterday outside of the five little chocolates left over from Christmas and a butter tart, which could explain why the whiny quality your cat's meow has taken on because she is in heat (*again*) is grating on your nerves so much and is about to push you over the edge, so to escape you go grocery shopping, which is fine for the first minute while you make your way along your nice quiet residential street, marvelling at the lack of tire tracks in to newly fallen snow, until that moment when you step off the path onto the main street and are hit by a wall of wind that almost takes your breath away and pushes you around the slippery, unplowed sidewalk, where the newly fallen snow doesn't look so beautiful anymore and you have to practically run to make any forward momentum, at which time you realize that you should never ever leave home without a hat and gloves no matter how nice and calm it seems when you peeked out the door.

But here I am now cocooned in the warmth and comfort again with a surprisingly unwhiny cat sitting on my lap, purring her little heart out making me forget all about the wind and cold.

And I have enough food to last me for at least a week.


28.12.01 6:43 PM | how could i not? ]

An email from a concerned friend:

I think you have an addiction to cats... :)

After reading your blog, I must inform you that cats have very small brains...your kitten probably doesn't even remember the other cats by now, let alone ever leaving Waterloo. I feel that if you were to get another cat, it would just be feeding *your* addiction. Next thing you know, "the TWO cats are lonely so maybe I'll get them a third"...then a fourth, then a fifth....it won't stop. It will be one vicious cycle until we see you on the news being escorted away by the police as the humane society tries to figure out what to do with your collection of 43 cats. We can get you help. You're not alone in this.

I did say that I had an addictive personality. I think I'll need a bigger apartment if I'm going to fit all those cats in.

7:07 AM | *gasp *sputter* *sputter* ]

There's nothing like waking up at 3am to a kitten sitting on your neck so you can't breathe.

And to think I wanted to get her a kitten friend to play with after seeing how much she misses our cats at home. Two kittens sitting on my neck might kill me.


27.12.01 2:06 PM | only the lonely ]

Who are these people who say it's great to come into work when no one else is around because you get so much work done? All I'm feeling is lonely. It's nice having the quiet bustle of people around. And those little breaks (*interruptions* as some others like to call them) are really little sanity savers to rest my mind. I'm no more productive now than I was last week when all the cubes were filled with people working away on their computers. If anything, I might be slightly less productive because I don't have people to ask questions of. And I am missing those sanity breaks.

At least I'm not completely alone. There is one other person in my department to keep me company and to talk with over the cube wall.

And I have eight new applications on my Visor, courtesy of two people in IT and SV. Games as well as educational materials (drinks, PalmSutra ...)

It is easier to beam such things when no one else is around.


25.12.01 7:50 AM | Still dreaming of that white Christmas ]

*Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays*


23.12.01 8:07 PM | TCINaT ]

The Cat Is Not a Toy

After slightly more than twenty-four hours in the house, Logan is absolutely fascinated by the other cats in the house. Unfortunately, she seems to think their only purpose in life is to serve as her playthings. She is stalking them and attacking their tails, and all they do is meow at her. It kinda reminds me of the Simpons episode with Bart and Lisa:

“Quit it.”
“Quit it.”
“Quit it.”

If they would just stand up for themselves and give her a little swat, she’s stop doing it. Until then, they are too much fun for her to even consider doing something else and since most of the time she isn’t actually doing anything to them, only staring, we’re just going to let them sort it out themselves.

There's good parenting for ya: let the children fight amongst themselves.

9:19 AM | almost naughty ]

I had this ... insane urge to go through the house last night looking for Christmas presents while my mother was off gallivanting at a Christmas party. The only presents under the tree were the ones I had placed there when I arrived, and since my mother was done her shopping, I knew there must have been presents somewhere in the house.

When my brother and I were younger, our grandmother would come from Montreal to stay with us over Christmas, forcing me to move into my brother's room for a week. It wasn't so bad - he had bunkbeds and lots of Lego to amuse us. And on Christmas Eve, we would each tell the other what one present under the tree was. Only one, but it was enough to tide us over until the next morning when we could open our stockings, the contents of which would then tide us over until everyone else in the house woke up and we could go and open all the presents under the tree. I don't know if our parents ever caught onto our little game, but it was fun while it lasted.

These days we tend to know pretty much what every present under the tree is. Sometimes we're even there when the present is bought. Sometimes we even buy the gifts ourselves and then our mom wraps them up and puts them under the tree with a cheque for the amount.

As for last night and the search for gifts, I managed to restrain myself from searching for any little packages. It might ruin what little surprises we have on Christmas morning. :)


21.12.01 9:40 AM | house rule #4 ]

Awww. So sweet. My coworkers gave me a goodbye present: The Dog is Not a Toy - a collection of Get Fuzzy strips.

Now exactly how am I suppose to get work done today with it sitting on my desk there, just begging to be laughed at, hmmm?

12:41 AM | the wizard of oz ]

Part of me is looking forward to going home for the holidays, while part of me is wondering what I'm going to do for five days without my computer, a virtually non-existant internet connection on my mom's computer, and only half the channels we get here in the 'loo. I figure it'll be the perfect time to start (and most likely finish) The Fellowship of the Ring so I can go out and see the movie and know what is going on.

Home is like vacation to me. Well, not exactly vacation. I suppose it would be more accurately described as an escape. I can go home and think about absolutely nothing, worry about nothing, do nothing. I find whenever I get stressed out, I just want to go home. Home with three cats who love me (not so much a problem now that I have my little Logan). Home with a car so I can get out of the house easily. Home where it is quiet and there are no noisy neighbours.

I hate the end of term. No matter whether I am in school or on a work term, I always get stressed out. It's not even anything big that sets me off, just an accumulation of little things: making that change from work mode to school mode (or vice versa), moving, saying goodbye to the people you become close to over the course of four months. It's not so bad this term since I'm not moving and most of the people will be around next term, but I still find myself trying to put off things until January when it feels like everything will be back to normal and I'll be able to make decisions with a clearer head.

So I apologize if I seem "off" in some way. Try me again in the new year. It'll be a fresh start and all, you know?


19.12.01 5:03 PM | are we there yet? ]

Every day this week has felt like a Friday. I started my week already tired from an interesting weekend, which could be tricking my body into thinking it's Friday. It's essentially my last week here at work (the two days next week don't really count) so I'm running into that friday-afternoon like feeling of not wanting to start anything. Everything just has that Friday feel to it.

7:37 AM | memento II ]

We ended up at Vanilla Sky last night after a few hours of shopping and such. I must say, it really wasn't what I expected it to be. I somehow expected a romantic movie with some thriller elements thrown in to appease the males, but instead I spent half the movie trying to figure out what was going on - in a good way - and the romantic elements were really a backstory to the rest of the action. If anyone out there has seen Memento, I think you'll understand what I mean.

Not that this is a sweeping endorsement of the film. As Brad so succinctly put it, the movie won't appeal to those people who don't want to actually think during the movie but want everything spelled out for them instead.


18.12.01 4:15 PM | definitely naughty ]

An updated "letter":

Dear Santa,

I have been a very good girl this year. For Christmas, can I please have another piece of Tracy's gum?
Thank-you. Say hi to Rudolph and Mrs. Claus for me.

Your friend,


Age 26
1:05 PM | naughty or nice ]

My coworkers crack me up. I received this email a few minutes ago:

Dear Santa,

I have been a very good girl this year. For Christmas, can I please have a piece of Tracy's gum?
Thank-you. Say hi to Rudolph and Mrs. Claus for me.

Your friend,


Age 26

I'll miss them over the next four months.


17.12.01 6:46 PM | NCD ]

oops. Missed it again. I gotta get better at writing things on my calendar.


15.12.01 6:11 PM | jet lag ]


Have you ever had a whiff of some scent send you instantly back to a moment in time, almost as if you were there?

It's weird, let me tell you.


14.12.01 9:10 PM | not anymore ]

This is the loverly card I got from my secret santa today at work.


It wasn't until I was back at my desk that I actually read the text of the card. I'm not sure what exactly to make of it.

6:47 PM | awwwww ]

There are few things cuter in the world than a kitten's first foray into snow, carefully making the first few steps into the wet snow, then quickly forgetting about any discomfort as she bounds around chasing snowflakes.


13.12.01 11:14 PM | dairy products ]

Why does grated cheese taste better than the same cheese sliced? Is it an osmosis diffusion thing, where because the cheese has more sides exposed, the flavour can seep out better?

7:44 PM | all those purdy lights ]

Last night, somewhere between the mall and my place of employment, I actually caught some of that "Christmas spirit" that's been floating around and getting people all hyped up. I was running around work, singing to the Christmas songs that got stuck in my head while I had been shopping, being all sneaky whilst I decorated a co-worker's cube for my secret santa duties. It really wasn't all that sneaky I guess, considering he and most other people had gone home long before, but it was still fun.

I caught myself humming Christmas carols today, so I guess it's here to stay for a little while.

And today I had an early Christmas present from my business prof in the form of my final partipation mark (it being somewhere around 10-15% higher than it was at the midterm point - letter grades are so vague, why can't they just use numbers like the rest of the world?!?) In my mind, this means I can study less for the final exam, which happens to be only two days away and for which I have not yet studied at all :)


9.12.01 8:29 AM | pass the buck ]

People (well, mostly my parents and coworkers) have been wondering when I will have new pictures of the kitten, and I would love to be able to whip out some amusing shots of the furball except for one little problem: every time I see her in an interesting or adorable pose, I realize that a picture would capture not only her, but also the vast messiness that is around her. And I blame it all on student living. You see, there are problems to renting student accomodations. Storage is at a minimum, closets are sometimes non-existant, and you have this compulsion to live out of your room rather than using the full house. Combined together, these factors make quite a bit of an organization dilemma. And as much as people say I am lucky to have gotten the bigger room in the apartment, really it just means I have even more space to collect junk but not really any more space to store it.

So there you have it. I can't take pictures of the cat because student accomodations are not conducive to photography.

12:44 AM | brilliant. just brilliant ]

I've started to notice a strange little trend the last few times I have seen a movie in a theatre. About halfway through the bag of popcorn (gotta get popcorn) I start to get really hungry. I'm talking about a medium-sized bag of movie popcorn, which in the real world translates into a lot of popcorn. So why, if I've already eaten half of the bag, do I get hungry?

Of course I have a theory about this. The theory is that they must be adding something to the popcorn to increase your appetite. After all, they keep raising the ticket prices, but food prices didn't rise in tandem (at least I don't remember them jumping as much as the ticket prices). When prices rise, people get upset and make noise. So rather than raise food prices, they just entice you to buy *even more* of their overpriced food.

Really quite a devious plan if you think about it. Kudos to them.


8.12.01 8:29 PM | LOTR ]

Anybody out there in the 'loo have a Fellowship of the Rings book I can borrow? All these Lord of the Rings movie trailers are beginning to get to me.


5.12.01 11:42 PM | reverse psychology ]

Have you ever noticed that, when a person is on a blogging "dry streak", the less often the person posts, the more often you tend to visit their blog? It's like the perverted law of probabilities - the longer they go without posting, the more likely it is that when I visit they will have posted.

Even though I see the flaw in this argument, I still find myself following the pattern of clicking on those linked favourites to see some new words facing me. No reward for the persistant.

9:32 PM | sushi ]

Have you ever wondered where they get the ideas for graphics for icons? I mean, an image to signify save or print is pretty easy to figure out, but when they are coming up with new functionality for a product, who decides what the little picture is going to look like?

As part of my job I get to play with some of the new software we are developing. I must say, I think it's my favourite part of the job. I work for a medical software company, so I get to see some pretty interesting things. We went on a hospital tour not that long ago and got to see them perform xrays, gastro fluoroscopy, and even an MRI. One of the products I work on is a display station for those kinds of images, but unfortunately half the time I don't know what I am looking at. Every once in a while someone will point out an interesting one and tell me what it is. The three-dimensional image of the chest was pretty cool. As is the image of the beating heart.

Anyway, the developers are always adding new features in (sometimes they even tell us about these wonderful additions) so they have to come up with new icons for these features. Sometimes they are missing tooltips, so I write what I can and just describe what the icon looks like until I can get a name for it. That in itself can be kind of funny. But there's this one icon that, although I've known it's name/function since the beginning, I can't help but call it the "fish" icon every time I see it. And since I've been cleaning up all the icons in one of the bigger help systems we have, I've seen it quite often over the last week or so.

delete - disable - fish - erase - exit

It is meant (I think) to be an image of the veins in the heart, every single time my brain substitutes fish for the proper name. I even stopped myself today, wondering why we had a picture of a fighting fish in with the product icons before the logical side of my brain caught up and reminded me what icon it was.