Sunday, 1 October 2017

Dear October

Dear October,

You are going to be a great month. To be honest, you don't even have to do anything and you'll already be better than September because September was the month that I had to put down my cat, Linden. He had a tumor growing in his mouth/brain area and while I knew the end was coming, it still sucked major donkey balls.

Yes, September sucked.

It was also the month in which I backfilled for my boss which is always a good experience. Except we had major changes to a project while she was gone and I had to do all the estimates... shit.

Not to mention, we already short-staffed so I was doing her job and all of mine. I left the office late and then continued doing work from home.

Oh, and they forgot my sub pay for the nine days she was away.

The pay will be rectified on my next pay, but... ugh!

It's also the month that some of my favourite Swiss people went home.

At this point, October, you don't have to do anything. Just let me get through the month unscathed and I'll like you just fine.

On the upside, you're also the month in which Canadian Thanksgiving occurs.

And a German friend I met in Ireland is going to be passing through.

And I'm applying for an overseas job. I don't hold out much hope of getting the job as I'm woefully unqualified based on their requirements, but Donald Trump was (still is) woefully unqualified and we know how that turned out, so... who knows? Could be!

Cheers, October.

Sunday, 20 August 2017

Sunday Sundries

Today turned into an unexpectedly long day and now I'm still dealing the emotional after math of Game of Thrones, so you get one thing tonight. One!

A friend posted a video on Facebook about a mbira but it didn't look like a mbira. It's called an array mbira and sounded nice, but it made me long for 'normal' mbira music. In my searching to find some, I came across this video.

It is so beautiful. It's one of my new favourites. Sadly, this version isn't available for sale anywhere! It's only the radio edits which are all electronic music. The single he released is still nice but it's not this one *sigh* 

Sunday, 13 August 2017

No Sundries

Between threats of nuclear war and the protests in Charlottesville, it has been a rough weekend for many in the States. Further afield, rioting broke out in Kenya after it was announced that President Uhuru Kenyatta won his re-election. Twenty-four people, including a 9-year-old girl, have died in the rioting. Here at home, more evacuation orders have been given as the result of the wildfires.

So, I have not witty comments to make or fun items to link to tonight. Instead, here's a video from Playing for Change.

If you are so inclined, you can learn more about the work they do on their website.

Sunday, 6 August 2017

Sunday Sundries

1. "The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (2015)" was released on Netflix Canada on August 1st. You know how Netflix notified me? By sending me an email about "Planet of the Apes (1968)".  Wrong choice, Netflix!

I don't know why "The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (2015)" didn't do better in theatres when it was released, but I love it. In its opening sequence, there's a car chase between two trabants. TRABANTS! Trabbis were a product of the former East Germany and reached their top speed of 100km/h in 21 secs. A trabbi car chase is a thing of beauty!

The whole movie is ridiculous and fun, but again... TRABBIS!! It didn't really matter what they did after that scene, I was going to love the movie.

2. August 1st is Switzerland's national holiday. I don't know if you know this but I love Switzerland. I know! This is brand new information to EVERYONE! Also, I am never sarcastic. Coincidentally, a friend posted an article that day about Switzerland's new suspension bridge which lead down the YouTube rabbit hole of Swiss videos. On a whim, I entered Sigriswil in the search bar and actually found a video of Sigriswil. The reason this is surprising is because Sigriswil Town only has a population of 889 and this is a fairly professional looking video. WHAT?!?

Not going to lie, I get a little teary watching that. I've walked all those streets! I ate that restaurant! I've attended services at that church! I've ridden that bus route! I don't even mind the crappy Phil Collins song because the video just makes me so happy.

3. Dara Ó Briain is a comedian I have enjoyed since catching him on a Just for Laughs festival show on CBC when I was still in high school. Not only is he funny, but his knowledge of math and science is amazing. What I wouldn't give to see him live! Anyway, his take on the movie 2012 had me cackling so loud one of the cats hid under the bed. (Do not stop it before it stops itself. Also, NSFW.)

4. At the time I post this, GISHWHES will have started. I look forward to seeing what ridiculous items I can get roped into doing this year.

5. Monaghan lost against Dublin and Armagh lost again Tyrone in Gaelic Football. *sigh* From here-on-out, I'm supporting team Anyone-But-Dublin... even if that is *shudder* Tyrone.

On the upside, the Galway-Tipperary Hurling match was not only a fantastic game - the teams were within one point or tied with each other for 95% of the game - but Galway nudged out a win in the final seconds of the game. The only downside to the game was seeing Supermacs on the Galway jerseys and remembering that I never did get to one the last two times I was back.

Just another reason to head back. Some of my favourite Ireland memories have occurred in a Supermacs. The fact that I remember those memories is pretty amazing given the drinking that had gone on before many of them.

Happy August, everyone!

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Sunday Sundries

1. It took four boxes of throat lozenges, 1 bottle of DayQuil, 1 bottle of NyQuil, and a lot of doing nothing for me to be able to say that I'm finally better... almost. There's still the occasionally coughing fit and a semi-persistent sore throat but I feel like doing things. That's a far cry from how I've been feeling these past two and a half weeks.

Due to work commitments, I couldn't miss any days but it meant my evenings were naps, followed by some TV, followed by bed.

I'm happy to have that part of the illness behind me.

2. Dunkirk is fantastic. The movie is less a story and more a moment in time. If you are interested in seeing it, definitely see it in the theatre.

3. Sticking the with movies (because when you want low-energy activities, you go see all the movies), Atomic Blonde is a lot of fun. If you enjoy James Bond films and like strong female protagonists then check out this one. The fight scenes are pretty intense but unlike most action flicks, the characters become tired and affected by their injuries as the scenes go on. Thumbs up on that.

Now, the one thing I didn't like. I'm going to preface this by reminding you that the use of Xhosa in Captain America: Civil War bothered me because NOT THE RIGHT REGION. The movie takes place in the days immediately before the fall of the Berlin Wall and there is a scene set in East Berlin. When the lead character crosses the street, you can clearly see the crossing signs behind here and they are not the correct Ampelmännchen. They should look like this:

The former East Germany is the only place in the world with these symbols. But Andrea, I hear you say, why would they change the crossing sign for a 5 second shot? Because East Germany never got rid of these signs. They started to but after a huge public outcry, the government decided to keep them. They are an endearing symbol of East Germany, one of the few items to survive into the modern era. They might as well have digitally removed the Fernsehturm from the skyline and it wouldn't have been as jarring to my eyes.

Now to tuck that complaint away into the same neglected corner as my Civil War complaint!

4. Monaghan and Armagh both won their GAA Gaelic Football games this past weekend. We now have a pub in Victoria that shows the games live. I'm the only person in there watching them but at least I don't have to watch them on super sketchy Internet sites. YAY! Monaghan faces off against Dublin this coming Saturday. In the meantime, I'll be psyching myself up by watching this classic on repeat.

That ad is a thing of beauty, I tell you. Also, it's nice to know that 31 of the Irish counties will be cheering for Monaghan this weekend because everyone hates Dublin.

5. Updating your CV for a job in the same place you currently work is annoying. I really just want to hand them a paper that says "you know what I'm capable of so do you think I can handle this position or not?" It's that fine line between talking yourself up but not overstating your abilities to the point where they can call  you out on it because they also worked on that same project. Ugh. Just ugh.