Tuesday, July 28, 2009

For the past year and a half the persons of my household have been looking after the two daughters of my eldest sister during the day, a moderate portion of their stays I supervised directly.

Madison, the elder of the two is six years old, Guinevere the younger is two years; I find myself very fond of them. I have spent time with children before these two, but rarely on a regular basis, and never where I was in a position of authority. My interactions with them often vary quite widely; from games of pretend to video games, from long talks to cake baking. I believe that they feel fondness towards me as well.

This fall we will be unable to continue our previous care, due to my youngest sister proceeding with her career ambitions, my attending college, and everyone else’s erratic schedules. For me this is somewhat disquieting.

I worry about them, an unusual sentiment for me considering my usually undemonstrative nature. Never the less I feel a depth of affection for them which rarely extends beyond a bare few. I know that they will have a great deal of time that I shall not experience with them; while I do not begrudge them the happy times I worry about the troubles that eventually come to all people. I want to protect them, even though I know that, such a task is not for me, but for their parents.

I wish them well.


Sunday, July 19, 2009

At Least There Aren't Any Elephants

I took a bit too much of a newer supplement yesterday morning and by 'a bit too much' I do mean at least half again on top of the recommended dosage. The purpose of the supplement, at least in the amount I'm supposed to take it in, is that of anxiety reduction. However, in the amount I did take it in it's effect is more that of a slight high. (Stupid powdered meds.)
Thus I spent most of yesterday doing what I usually do when something psycho-active finds it's way into my diet; feeling sleepy, smiling ridgedly, giggling far too much, and wishing that it would go away soon.
I know a lot of people would ask me to clarify that last sentence, as at least 80% of the people I know quite look forward to their time with mood altering stimulants or depressants, whether their drug of choice is a night out with alcohol, a long day with a more illicit drug, or simply a spare moment with caffeine.
There are many things I think about in any given day, but whenever I'm in an particularly unnaturally mood, eventually I always seem to wonder, "Why in the name of deep fried frog lips, do people do this on purpose?"
Unlike most of my fellow humanoids, I've never been terribly fond of the 'floaty, floaty, dream-time' quality of downers, nor am I enthralled over the over intense 'DUDE! Is that my hand?' effect I get from uppers and I wouldn't take anxiolytics if it were not for the overly consuming doubt and my certainty that one day, one of those people who like to hug me from behind are going to end up in a 'Jessie had a bad day' induced neck brace.
I prefer reality to stay just the way it is,

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Spicy Flavored

In preparation for becoming an ‘impoverished college student’ and no longer having full access to a kitchen at my mid-day meal, it was suggested that I experiment with instant ramen that is packaged in its’ own bowl. A flat of a dozen of these ramen bowls was purchased so that I could test the meals and judge as to whether they suited my purposes.
The tops of the bowls proudly state that they are ‘Hot & Spicy Flavored’.
While I have eaten many things that are hot, and many things that are spicy, I have never before encountered anything that declared itself to be hot & spicy flavored.
Yesterday I was given an opportunity to test the meal in the field. I work part-time and usually my weekday shifts are two hours long, on Monday however, all of my coworkers in my department were, without exception, out of town. Thus, triple shift.
I arrived at opening and worked until midday, at which time I decided to take my lunch break.
Upon sampling the soup I must say, it is in fact hot & spicy flavored. After 2.5 glasses of water I managed to eat it all. It is certainly not the hottest food I have ever eaten (the hottest food I have ever eaten was a Costa Rican pepper that caused me to make noises at a pitch not generally produced by human beings), but if you find the prospect of eating hot salsa forbidding I would not recommend it. Tasty though.
Upon closer inspection of the ingredient listing I came to the conclusion a more literal description of the soup's flavoring would be beef and red pepper.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Montrose Cultural Centre

Your favorite Peace county located public library and mine, the Grande Prairie Public Library, recently moved locations and became part of the Montrose Cultural centre.
This combination public library/art gallery was funded by the donations of kind citizens involved in the community and heavy taxation.
The building of this facility has been long in coming, and after much lobbying, fundraising, blood, sweat, and manly, manly tears, we see the fruition; a community centre that brings joy to the hearts of children all across the Peace.
Digressing; it's a very nice facility.
The photo to the right is the foyer of the building, this hall leads to the library. There is also a hall to the right which leads to the art gallery, but it also contains an Esquires, and as coffee is a form of alien mind control that already has it's claws in over half the population, the least I can do is limit your exposure before it's too late.
Further along the hall but also to the right are the public washrooms. These washrooms are modern, shiny, and installed with automated sinks and toilets. One of these sinks is either malfunctioning strangely, or host to mischievous spirits. I think I'm going to be disappointed when they get a handyman/priest to come fix/exorcise it, it has personality.

Invisible art people
The Art Gallery looks pretty good, but I haven't met the staff yet and I can't find the exhibits, I choose to believe this is because they're invisible.

I don't have a picture because again, coffee=evil and art people=masters of disguise.

The inside of the library is spacious and neutral toned with lots of shelving for the books, movies, puppies, etc. There are 30 computers open to the public, as well as plenty of tables and seating.
In an interview with one of the staff, I was asked what I was doing wandering around the library with a camera.

The children's area upstairs is brightly colored and a large portion of it's walls and rails are clear and easily smudged, thus requiring daily washing to get rid of the marks of grubby little (and not so little) hands. The beanbags are very comfy and the reading program is up and running.

Above ground parking is limited, but there is a nicely sized parkade. The entrance to the parkade is at the end of the small parking lot.

I think I'll name the tap ghost Junior,

Kind Citizens

Community involment opertunities.
Joy: Tears of.
Prairie Art Gallery

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Knuckle Cracking

You have probably been exposed to this concept at least once; the practice of intentionally twisting, compressing, and bending joints in order to produce an audible sound, often known by the onomatopoeias ‘crack’ and ‘pop’. The most obvious example of joints that make this sound when manipulated are those of fingers and hands, but other joints include jaws, wrists, toes, elbows, ankles, and the vertebrae of the spinal column.
There are a few theories on why joints pop when you twist them, but the prettiest girl at the ball is cavitation, that is, the formation and collapse of a void.
Synovial joints, such as the fingers have, have cavities between the cartilage between the bones, those cavities are filled with a fluid that acts as a lubricant amongst other things. Anyhow, when the joint is manipulated, the surface of the bones are pulled apart which lowers the pressure inside the joint cavity, the reduced pressure allows dissolved gasses escape and form bubbles, the bubbles quickly collapse and produce pops
Despite what I was told by a particularly terrifying woman as a child, the claim that cracking your knuckles will cause the development of arthritis is unsubstantiated by any evidence. On the topic of long term effects, chronic knuckle crackers tend to have laxer grip strength and hand swelling, this however is offset by the chance that lax ligaments are simply more likely to cavitate. So it’s unknown whether people who crack get lax, or if people who are lax are more likely to crack in order to relieve pressure.
I never believed it, but she was still scary.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Canada Day

Formerly Dominion day, celebrated on the anniversary of the British North America Act (Now the Constitution Act) which when implemented in 1867 united Canada as a country. (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Quebec originally.)
Unlike the United States' national day 'Independence Day', only the formation of the country is celebrated. Being as Canada was not a fully independent state until the Canada act of 1982.

As a child I had very little understanding of the history behind the celebration and was greatly frustrated by the (to my mind at least) nonsensical proceedings. Though as I learn the history and get a true sense of what is actually being celebrated, I begin to develop warmer feelings towards the practice. After all it is not simply an anniversary that is being held, but a remembrance of the beginnings of a society that connects and serves (though poorly at times) approximately 33 million people in a way that a disconnected populace would be hard pressed to.
My city has an annual parade, as well as fireworks the night before. I myself was in the parade last year. My sister is in the Parade today, perhaps if I can find a picture in the city website I will link to it.
Happy Canada Day,

British North America Act 1867

Canada Act 1982
Grande Prairie 08 parade
Population clock