Ooooh! Aaaah!

I am making this post from the iPad that my mom got for her birthday today. People have been asking for demonstrations on how to use this thing, so I'm doing this to show them stuff. This is the 64GB version with 3G capability, which is pretty impressive. Typing is pretty easy on it, too. Taadaa!


Return of Blog

Wow. It's been so long since I used this blog that I tried to sign into my account with the wrong e-mail address. o.O I used my gmail account by mistake, and it told me I wasn't the author of any blogs, and for half a second I wondered if I'd just let this thing languish for so long that it had disappeared into the ether. I should find a way to back up the entirety of my blog. This is the 433rd post, according to Blogger, so backing up each one individually would be a pain. Anybody know if it's possible to save your enitre blog at once? I am so out of touch with what can be done with Blogger...

In any case, I'm feeling the urge to talk about myself and my non-interesting life right now, so have a post:

Got a haircut today for the first time in freaking forever. It's only a few inches shorter than before, but I got layers added, so I actually have a lot less hair now. Hopefully this means it'll dry faster. The hair around my face doesn't fit into a ponytail, though. =/ My hair is no longer "Eve in Eden" long, but it's still to my mid-back. And this cut got rid of the last of the frazzled part from when I bleached out the red streaks I had a few years ago.

Updated Firefox and discovered that there's an entire category of Foxkeh "personas" (read: themes). I have a love of foxes, so I went and browsed through them. I actually found one that's both awesome and subtle enough for my tastes, so I'm now using it. I even changed my display options to always show the tabs bar so that I can see the entire picture of the little foxkeh in the corner. ^_^ I tend to hate tabs, but maybe always having the tabs bar displayed will encourage me to use them. So far, though, my opinion of them has been that I prefer seeing how many webpages I'm looking at by looking at the Windows Task Bar, because I often have different Firefox windows open relating to different tasks I'm working on, so having two Firefox windows and two other programs open makes more visual sense to me than having to look at Firefox specifically and then relate my tabs back to the other programs. It's a small thing, but I've always figured that if it's just a matter of preference, then it doesn't particularly matter, so I might as well do it the way I like. Hmm. That logic may be circular. I might have to rethink my defense of separate browser windows for separate webpages/tasks. Bah.

You know what? That's all I feel like talking about right now. Everything else in my life has been discussed to death lately. I just need the internet so that I can ramble about things nobody cares about. ^_^


25 Things About Me

So a couple people have tagged me to do this. If I've tagged you, it means I want you to write a similar blog post/facebook note. Because I think you're cool. (Or, if you're one of the people who tagged me, I've tagged you to show off the fact that I've finally done this!)

So, yeah, the idea is to list 25 facts/quriks/habits/etc. pertaining to me. Here they are.

1) I am verbose. I try to be concise, but I like to talk about things. This will likely be relevant throughout the rest of this post.

2) I have had my janitablog.blogspot blog/account for four and a half years now. I loved it and used it constantly at first. I still love it, but I barely use it anymore. I feel kind of bad about that. =(

3) I semi-recently acquired a Dreamwidth blog account, which you can find at http://janita.dreamwidth.org. A site invitation fell into my lap, so I decided to get my name while it was available. I think there are three posts on that blog, two of which are about the layout. Layouts on Dreamwidth are much more complicated than on Blogger. Actually, a lot of things on Dreamwidth are much more complicated than on Blogger. I'm starting to wonder why I bothered getting the account...

4) My vision is really horrid. I wear contact lenses for sever myopia, and I put glasses overtop of those for my mild astigmatism when I need them and remember them. My optometrist and I tried really hard to find a brand of torric contact lenses that worked for me so that I could correct both problems with just contacts, but we were unsuccessful. I have a pair of glasses that corrects both my myopia and my astigmatism, but I lose so much peripheral vision when I don't wear my contacts that it annoys me. Come to think of it, my optometrist recently had a stroke and is no longer working, so I have to find a new one. Dang...

5) I'm no good at playing the piano. I took lessons as a kid, and I could probably improve with considerable effort, but my piano profficiency course in first year university was like torture for me. Completing it supposedly gives me grade 3 on the RCM scale, but it was a mandatory pass/fail course, so it's not worth much.

6) I was a very literal child. I didn't understand the concept "figure of speech." The example I give most often of this is that, when I was very young, I thought that "making love" consisted of two people sitting around, cutting hearts out of construction paper. They were literally *making* love. It was therefore a shock to discover that you were supposed to be naked while making love--I didn't see why, and I thought it was rather inappropriate.

7) I've always thought that, if anybody could read my mind, I'd sound like a broken jukebox. I live with constant "earworms." And, for the most part, I don't mind. The only times it bothers me is if I don't like what's stuck in my heaad. Very seldom do I get annoyed with a song or something simply because it's been repeated too many times. Right now I have the music from the Finish diswasher detergent commercial stuck in my head. It's relatively inoffensive.

8) I am a night owl. I enjoy doing things at night because there aren't any deadlines or appointments. Nothing gets in my way. Well, except the morning. I do not suffer from insomnia. I did briefly, actually, but it was because I kept waking up early, not because I couldn't get to sleep. But, anyway, yeah, I'm productive at night, just like a lot of my friends, with whom I hang out online on IM and whatnot. ^_^

9) I work alone. This is related to number eight. I focus best when I don't have to worry about other people, so at night, when everybody else is in bed, I'm in my element. I'm happy to be social with other people while I'm working, so long as I don't have to deal with them in relation to my work. I find it really difficult to co-ordinate my thought process with other people, so group work just doesn't go well for me. It was always my least favourite part of school. If I wasn't a musician, I'd get myself a t-shirt that says "Does not play well with others."

10) I am a very private person. This is related to number nine, in that I work alone because I don't like other people knowing what I'm doing. It's rather stupid, really. For no good reason that I've ever really been able to articulate, I don't like other people knowing much about me or messing with my stuff. Obviously, there are many exceptions to this, such as friends and Peter, but my default setting is to just not tell people things and to keep my stuff away from people who might go through it or even move it around. I do think it's simpler in some ways because a lot of people just don't need to know some stuff, but I can't shake the feeling that this means I'm screwed up in some way.

11) I still cringe at gaffes I made 20 years ago. I am 25 years old. Nothing I did at the age of 5 should embarrass me, but some of it still does. I'm surprised I even remember any of it... ^_^

12) I eat a lot of cold cereal. It is my go-to food. If I'm hungry and I don't feel like making anything, I'll have cereal. This happens remarkably often. Raisin Bran and Mini Wheats are the most common kinds I'll eat, but I also like Just Right, Honey Nut Cornflakes, and Oatmeal Crisp. Occasionally, I'll eat my mom's Life cereal, though, ironically, I don't much like it. My cereal-eating habit makes Peter shake his head.

13) I have a partially eidetic memory. My father and siblings are the same way. I can usually be counted on to remember things. I have to actually take something in in order to remember it, though, so stuff like history, which I never really studied, I just don't know about. It makes an interesting contrast with stuff I have studied. And by "interesting," I mean it makes me look like an idiot. ^_^

14) I watched Sailor Moon when I was a kid. Like, 11-13 years old. It's where I picked up the ^_^ emoticon that I've been using occasionally in this post. It's pretty much the only anime I ever watched, but a lot of people who see me use that emoticon assume I watch all kinds of anime. I had Sailor Moon trading cards and everything. It was Pokemon for girls, but before Pokemon really came onto the scene. Ah, my awkward adolescence. ^_^

15) My mom tried to force me to take Home Economics in junior high school. I wanted to take Drama instead. I have never been in the habit of letting my parents force me to do anything, so I fought tooth and nail against taking Home Ec. My mom made me pass a test of what she thought I should learn from the course before she let me take Drama. The test included how to make baking powder biscuits. Because there's no such thing as recipes. My mother is a strange woman in some ways...

16) I love pickles, but I avoid any other pickled foods. The thing I love about pickles is the texture of the pickled cucumber flesh. Because of this, I prefer to eat pickles whole, rather than sliced. Other foods just aren't the same when pickled. I'm not a huge salt fan (I prefer sweet things), so the brine doesn't appeal to me all that much. It took me a long time to develop any kind of a taste for pickles. When I was a kid, Jenilee used to eat my pickles because I didn't like them. Jenilee would eat anything, though, so I'm not sure that anecdote is evidence of her more developed palate.

17) When I started university, I discovered an unexpected love for music theory. Though my favourite part of music was and still is conducting, I would have been interested in doing a degree in music theory. Sadly, though, that was only possible at the U of A if I did Theory and Composition, and I didn't want to compose. A lot of junior/senior high kids think of theory as that annoying bookwork they get punished with when they keep goofing around, but it's actually quite wonderful. I am toally a geek...

18) When I was on vacation in Mexico the summer I turned 12, there was a hurricane a ways down the coast that was causing large waves where we were in Cancun. My parents and I were wading in the surf on our way back to our room one day when, seemingly out of nowhere, a huge wave hit us (well, mostly me), and washed away my glasses. This was before I started wearing contact lenses, and it was only halfway through our two-week vacation, so I was blind for about a week.

19) In high school, a lot of people knew who I was. I went to a pretty big high school (over 2000 students in three grades), and I had no idea who most people were. It was always weird to have somebody say they'd seen me perform in band at some school function, or in the play or something. It was like being popular, except I was a keener instead of being cool. ^_^

20) Something else that happened in high school is that my school had a lockdown drill after 9/11. I thought this was bullshit, so I decided to protest it. I had Drama class at the time the drill was scheduled, which was a largely unsupervised class, so when the announcement for the lockdown was made, I went into the "rotunda" (big open space in the middle of the school) in front of the office. One of the teachers came out and told me to go to class, and I yelled at him for a bit about how stupid the whole thing was before I sat myself down and refused to move. I was alone for this. My Drama teacher knew where I was, mind. I don't think he made any of his students stop whatever they were doing for the lockdown. When the drill was over, I went back to class. I didn't have to go talk to the principal or anything like that (probably because they were busy at the time), but one of the administration cornered my Drama teacher later to ask him why I wasn't in class for the lockdown drill. He defended me, saying that my ancestors had had enough experience with fascism. He had no idea who any of my family members were, of course. He told me all of this after school that day when he was tweaking my costume for the play. Looking back, I can't believe I got worked up enough to do that, but I love my Drama teacher so much. =)

21) My favourite TV show of all time is ReBoot, one of the earliest CGI series. My favourite character from the show is AndrAIa. The show started airing when I was 10, but it still rocks my socks.

22) For my current job, I had to learn how to drive a standard transmission. I'm a school liason/sales rep for a musical instrument repair shop, so I drive around to schools all day. The company has a car for this purpose, but it's a standard. I was taught mostly by the guy I took over from, who was 21 or 22. It made me feel rather silly to be taking driving lessons from a guy who was younger than me.

23) I have read the Twilight books, and I didn't hate them. Actually, I kind of like them. Please note that this is a moderate opinion. I bought the first one when I was living in England and my computer was sent in for repairs, so I was bored stiff. I read it twice, then bought the other books as I went through them. They have their issues, certainly, but there's some neat stuff in there. The movies are vastly inferior to the books, of course.

24) I haven't bothered to get a haircut in over a year. I've been meaning to since the summer, but I've always been wanting to get a salon dye job to make my hair silvery-gray, so I've been postponing getting it cut until I dye it, which I have been postponing for various reasons. Currently, it's because I'm post-Christmas broke, so I think I'll cave and just get a cut without getting it dyed. My hair is almost down to my waist now, which is kind of crazy.

25) My drink of choice at Starbucks is a triple grande non-fat latte. If I'm in the mood for something sweet, I get a grande non-fat caramel macchiato. On the rare occasion that I'm looking for something low in caffeine, I get a grande non-fat earl gray tea misto with vanilla syrup. The Starbucks giftcard I got for Christmas has already been used up. ^_^

That's all! I hope you've enjoyed this extremely long entry! I don't even want to guess at how long it took me to write. =)


Meditative Blogging

There was frost this morning, and, though it wasn't really that cold, my car had trouble starting.

Things have not gotten better since then.

And, of course, I'm blogging about it, because the world totally wants to hear about my headdesk-inducing day. Except not. Moving along, then...

I have a plastic sleeve that contains my birth certificate, my health care card, and my social insurance card. This sleeve usually lives inside my passport. Throw in my driver's license and my bank card, and that's basically the official me. Not all of those documents would be needed for identity theft, but it's kind of odd to have such a dense handful of official identity.

In a related incident, I discovered today that you can't sign up for Alberta Blue Cross online. You can, however, fill out a form and have them contact you with a recommended plan. I did not do this. I'll have to call them tomorrow. The plan I'm getting pays out $15,000 if I die accidentally. That surprised me.

Looking at all these documents with my name on them makes me think of how much of a pain it would be if I changed my name for whatever reason. It's enough to tempt me to keep my current last name when I get married. Well, that and the fact that I like my last name. I don't want to hyphenate my name, and, really, if I got married to Peter, I'd be Mrs. B-S if I hyphenated, which I obviously don't want. I wouldn't necessarily mind taking my husband's name, though, and I like the idea of the whole family having the same last name (especially me having the same last name as my kids). I think it mostly comes down to the sense of identity I've attached to my name. My first name is uncommon enough around here that I think of it more or less as belonging to me. My middle name, the rather common Helen, I wouldn't particularly mourn the loss of, though. My last name is somewhere in between. *ponder*

There's music coming from the next room that sounds like Burl Ives, and it's making me think of Christmas. ^_^


Have Blog, Will Write (Occasionally)

Time for my monthly blog post. I actually went and poked at all of the settings for this blog, which I hadn't done in years. I didn't really change anything--I just set it to e-mail me when somebody comments on my blog, and to send me a copy of my blog when I publish it, which I did so that I can easily back it up. As I've mentioned before, Blogger is nice and simple to use, so the fact that I haven't looked "under the hood" in so long hasn't had any kind of negative effect.

Tomorrow I start my school rounds at work, which means I start at 8am. Blah. Oh, well. I wouldn't be terribly thrilled to just sit around in the shop all day with nothing to do, so I guess this is a good thing. So I'll go gather up my promotional materials bright and early tomorrow morning and head off to introduce myself to teachers. It'll be shiny.

I've joined Festival City Winds this year. It looks like it's exactly what I've been wanting to do, and I know lots of people in the ensemble (I'm in the advanced band). Our first rehearsal was on Wednesday, and it went well.

Peter leaves London on the 19th. He'll be in Uruguay until he comes home for Christmas, I believe, getting the lay of the land in terms of what resources are available to him. This means he likely won't have regular access to WiFi internet, so our methods of communication will have to change somewhat. I will greatly miss actually talking to him every day. Sad.

Ok, now that I've totally depressed myself, I'm gonna end this entry and go plug in my laptop, because it's showing me the yellow triangle of plug-in-your-laptop-right-now. Hopefully you people who read this from around the world are doing well. =)


Still Alive

I'm bored, so I'm writing a blog post. That's how these things work, right?

Peter was in town for pretty much all of July. That was really nice, but now I don't get to see him until Christmas. :-( He's spending the next several months flitting around Europe and South America. While he was here, I was ridiculously busy. We had a joint birthday party (which I still need to post pictures of on Facebook) and many, many other social obligations. What with working full-time during all of this, I was left exhausted most of the time. Getting to spend time with Peter was worth it, though. I miss him. And I'm going to stop writing about this now because it's making me sad.

Life in general is good. Work is going well. All of the instruments that are in for summer maintenance and repair are done (except for a few tubas, which I've cleaned, but my boss hasn't un-dented). This means I don't have much to do for the next couple of weeks. We'll be returning the instruments during the last week of August because there's much less chance that teachers will be around before then. My boss has suggested that we trade half days so that neither of us has to sit around for 7 hours while the shop is open.

My dad is going out of town for a few days tomorrow, and my mother and I have made plans for activities in his absence. She wanted to go see Harry Potter for her birthday, and we're finally going to get to that. We're also going to go look at the new Sephora in Southgate. The new section of that place looks pretty spiffy. I have no idea why there would be two Coach stores in Edmonton, though, but whatever.

Oh, and for my birthday I was given a Blackberry Curve. It's red, and I love it. It lets me be much more connected than I was, which is good because I'm rarely at a computer during the day. I still have to do things like enter stuff into the address book, but maybe I'll do that one of the days I'm stuck at work with nothing to do. :-)

And... that's it, more or less. You'd think that, with how busy it feels like I've been, I would have more to say. I guess the verbose tendancies of my youth have faded--after all, I'm now 25. Gasp! A quarter of a century! Shouldn't I be having some sort of crisis about now? Meh, whatever. ^_^


Post 427

Five weeks to the day since I last posted anything here. Not much is going on. Peter gets back Tuesday evening, which I'm looking forward to. I'm glad I have Wednesday off for Canada Day. =) There should be some people coming over to watch the fireworks. I'm not sure where they'll be coming to--I think it mostly has to do with how jetlagged Peter is. The weather forecast said it might rain that day, actually, which would not be fun.

Work is good, I guess. I quite like my job, generally speaking, but cleaning out so many instruments with acid has given me a rash on my arms (where they touch the edge of the counter by the sink because the gloves aren't long enough). Oh, well. I found a really good hand cream yesterday (a variety of Aveeno), and it was on sale, too, so that made me happy. =)

My parents returned last weekend from their 5-week European vacation. They were both glad to get home. My mom bought herself a real Hermes scarf, something she's wanted for a while. My dad looked at buying this nice corkscrew, but he didn't want to spend the money it cost, so my mom sneakily bought it and gave it to him for Father's Day. My dog is happy that he's back to having three people to beg for food.

I'm very much enjoying the summer weather we're having, even if both my work and home have the AC cranked to the point where I have to wear sweaters. I prefer warm weather, I guess. ^_^

And, yeah, that's about all I have to say for now. =)