Friday, March 23, 2007
Monday, March 19, 2007
Thoughts from the Chinese Food Aisle
Why is there some detergents with a "clean laundry" smell? Isn't it the whole point?
Who would buy a regular drain cleaner when you can get the extra-strength version for the same price?
Why so many beverages have weird names? Fruit Integration, Solar Burst, Giggly Grape? That's not original, it isn't hip and nobody cares about those lesser trademarks (We shouldn't care about ANY trademark)! So give me a break!
While on the flavour topic, why do Coca-Cola and Pepsi keep introducing new flavours? I'm not talking about the "healthier" versions, but those special ones. Do they think that the new Meatloaf Coke or the Clean Laundry Pepsi will be inviting to new, non-soda drinking customers? The people that bought Vanilla Coke, Pepsi Blue and Apple and Cinnamon Doctor Pepper (no, I don't think it exists, but it would be good, wouldn't it?) are, in the vast majority of cases, the ones who ALREADY BUY the originals. They usually just want to try something new. In the best of cases, some will switch to the new flavour on a regular basis, but you'll still have the same number of buyers with a more diversified, thus more expensive line of products. This is why those new flavours are usually discontinued within a year, sometimes under the false pretense of being seasonal or limited edition flavours. I know, I worked for Coca-Cola!
There is a major problem with the economic growth model, as not everything can follow this trend. Many products, not only colas, are still desperatly trying to make us buy more and more of the same stuff. Sony introduces at least 30 TV models a year! Home Depot currently have a series of ads where wives will go to any length to convince their husbands to make some changes in the house and replace perfectly functionning, albeit not the most up-to-date appliances.
Then you wonder why nothing lasts...
And to finish with the grocery-themed questions: Why do night-shift and day-shift employess always diss each other? Both groups seem to think that the other one doesn't do anything! Guys, you're not there! It's not because you don't see them doing anything that you must assume they do nothing!
Now on the main topic (yes, this was only an appetizer):
Québec is in the middle of an electoral campaign. It's an interesting one as three partys are practically even right now, but it remains boring as I feel none have much relevant things to say (Well, less than usual)!
André Boisclair, leader of the Parti Québécois(PQ), a sovereignist (or "separatist") party, was recently caught in a controversy in english medias through Canada (The PQ is frequently the target of such attacks, due to their stance on Québec political future). Here's a brief excerpt from one of those articles:
Parti Québécois Leader André Boisclair refused to apologize yesterday for referring to Asians as having "slanted eyes," even as he faced criticism from Asian-Canadian and other groups that the comments were offensive.
Very first of all, let's say that André Boisclair is the least racist of those three leaders. He was the first one to not only take his distances, but to condemn Hérouxville's "Code of Life" (I posted about the subject here). He is always talking against any form of discrimination; sexual, racial, religious and based on sexual orientation (To put things in perspective, Boisclair is homosexual and made a very emotional discourse about the whole subject of intolerance recently), sometimes even to the point of putting on everybody's nerves.
Secundo, "slanting eyes", which is definitely a deregatory term in english, was a translation of his french speech which used the expression yeux bridés. Litterally, it means the same thing, the same way black is translated into negro in spanish. But, just like negro in spanish, yeux bridés doesn't have the highly pejorative weight of it's english counterpart. I'm not saying that there isn't any racist terms for Asians in french, just that this isn't one. My Asian friends use the word and are never offended when someone else is. There's no weight to the word and it was never a debate in Québec. An Asian PQ candidate, responding to the emerging controversy said she considered "slanting eyes" a "reference of beauty" (I agree. I've always been attracted by almond-shaped eyes, regardless of a person's origins).
Tertio, Boisclair's speech was in FAVOUR of immigration, multiculturalism and minorities increasing implication in our society. Talk about taking something out of context!
I don't really like Boisclair, I think he's disconnected from his electorate, snobby and a little stiff. I do prefer him to the two other "main" candidates, as he's leaning more to the right, but my vote will go to a lesser party, Québec Solidaire, as I prefer their political platform.
My riding is a PQ fortress, the current MNA (Member of the National Assembly), Louise Harel is a 25 years veteran who had a minister seat on many governments and got huge majorities in every election. I have a lot of respect for Mrs. Harel, she reminds me of my politically-involved grandmother, a former mayor (and a Liberal Party member).
Despite all of this, my vote for a minor party won't be wasted, as $0.50 will be given to the party I voted for by the Directeur Général des Élections (Chief Electoral Officer), the institution responsible for the administration of the electoral and referendum system in the province.
So I finally can put a value to my voice in the system!
Time to go see what I can buy for 50 cents...
Saturday, March 17, 2007
I was a little drunk when I wrote the last post. On retrospect, I definitely over-reacted, but their was definitely some frustration and I still believe my brother acted as a jerk. Did he learn a lesson? Of course not! Was I right to punch him? Of course not!
St. Patrick day is on and I can't celebrate, as I'm working a night shift tonight. My Irish side is completely pissed and trying to convince my French-Canadian part, already a heavy drinker, to show up drunk at work. They worked together and they came up with this solution: Buy some Guinness or Kilkenny (probably the latter) right at work, as they are available at the grocery, a then drink WHILE working.
My neutral, wise and independant brain is still considering...
Time to go start drinking!
Thursday, March 15, 2007
Right and Wrong
I feel kinda shitty...Nah, I fell really shitty!!!
For the first time in my life, I punched my brother!
I felt like it was the strongest punch I ever gave, yet the weakest one ever!
It was also the most deserved one...
For you see, my brother should have got that lesson...the way he acted...the way he behaved.
But he was, and he's still my bro!
Tonight, we went to a pool club, played a few games. He won them all. I thought I was rusted, but hey, I lost! Fair game. He decided the gamble would be some kind of humiliation with one of the girls considered as ugly/fat as possible. I tried to delete it, pretending a practice shot. Still. I lost. Obvious loss...
I used to be good, really good at pool. But there was no way pretending. Still, I think it's not because you win that you're right.
My losing bet, after much arguing, was to go see the waitress, tell her I'd pay her 75 bucks to...well...to whatever...
She said she didn't understand. I'm glad she didn't. She told me she was living in the suburbs. Her boyfriend didn't come to get her as expected. It'd cost her a lot to get back home...I stayed, I listened to her sad story...my bro came by to confirm his bet...I tought it was getting cruel. I stayed, as I thought she was a cool girl in a shitty situation...
Some time later, we were thrown in the street, friendly expelled by the bouncer as we were getting obnoxious, me and the bro. While walking back, Oli went again on the poor girl's case. I tried to fight him lightly, but he was able to avoid my weak attack. He started laughing; In his opinion, I had no chance to get to him.
He didn't finish the sentence.
The rest of the walk back home was in complete silence. I felt like shit. I offered him many times to get back to me.
He never did.
When we got back home, I told him how bad I felt, but how much I thought he deserverd the punishment.
I still believe it. And I still think he couldn't get back to me. He desserved everything he got...It was about time he learned that life lesson...I know, I've told him a few times...Just didn't think I'd be the one doing so!
Sunday, March 11, 2007
WARNING: Geek Content!
I don't really post about my passion for LEGOs because, like Star Trek, those are things I learned a long time ago interest few people, and none in my vicinity. Battlestar Galacatica is the latest addition to my nerdy interests.
Therefore, I enjoy those things on my own or in special circles focused on one of those subjects. I assume and completely enjoy my geekiness and will never put on "regular" people's nerves about it, except in very rare instances.
Today is one of those exceptional moments, as I'm too excited to be kept silent! LEGO released an jem of a model that I MUST have:
Time to go save a lot of toy money!
Wednesday, March 07, 2007
A dude, in whom many believe, but not as many listen to, apparently said: "He that is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone..."
But he didn't say "Simon says"!
Time to go raise the thermostat, it's damn cold in here!
Tuesday, March 06, 2007
Here's a private message I got on Facebook (A guilty pleasure, I used to laugh at people using those networking sites...Now I dread and like it all at once):
Subject: i recognize...
Message: your naked picture from the one on the wall at the staff accom from the voy lol
i was looking at the group banff bitches and had to tell u ur famous lol
In Banff, I had the idea to create a wall of fame. We would take a picture of the leaving ones and add it to the wall. That's what it looked like about a week before I left:
Well, I know I'm puttiing on some people's nerves with those unclothed pics, but I love it so here's mine again (if you're observant, or reading this parethesis, you'll notice it's the last one on the wall on the previous pic):
Apparently, not only the pics are still on the wall, but people kept the tradition and are still doing so, now printing huge pics on a computer, which covered most walls in the living room quite quickly, as there's a huge staff rotation in Banff hotels.
Well, it's nice to know I'm a celebrity for the right reasons! The legacy survives!
I got a wekend night job in a grocery to make a little more money before going back to the bush, as I lost my most lucrative housekeeping contract about a month and a half ago and times have been hard since then. Funny how easy it is to find such a job. It's boring, it's sucks, but it's reliable and relatively lucrative for what it is (11 bucks an hour...). Every time, I get those night clerk jobs as a temporary thing and the day I quit, I'm sure I'm done with that kind of work. And here it comes again!
Well, only a month and a half, then I will never have to do this again.
I've watched two interesting movies in the last two days. The Departed, and Factotum. Both movies left me with a strange taste in mouth, but I enjoyed both.
If I'm glad Martin Scorsese finally won an Academy Award, I think he should have won for something else, years ago. The Departed is a good movie, but not a great movie, not even the greatest movie of 2006 nor Scorsese's best movie. If one thing, I just really want to see the original Hong Kong version, Internal Affairs.
As for Factotum, I liked it, despite my brother constant comparisons with Charles Bukowski's real personality (The movie is inspired by his eponymous novel, and the main protagonist is his usual alter-ego, Hank Chinaski), but there was something missing in the character's portrayal. I don't think it came from Dillon, most likely from the direction or screen adaptation. There was some vulnerability missing, a slight, but relatively disturbing thing. Interestingly, the story felt like it was stuck between to different time settings, our present and Bukowski's original novel present.
Time to go mock a bird, wish me luck...
Thursday, March 01, 2007
I'm Lovin' It!
My upstairs neighbours are pissing me off: They listen to fucking techno music (I sometimes love to imagine them dancing in underwear to the rythms with lightsticks in their hands...) and they always leave their outside light open (our doors are on the same level), reflecting in my bedroom, through my shitty bamboo blinds (I had a big bamboo phase when I moved, as the girl working at the asian-themed store was cute as hell!) and right in my unsleeping face. It means I'll get upset, then enraged and won't end up sleeping until it's so sunny outside the light is not annoying me anymore.
But I'm also pissed for a lot of other reasons: My friend J-S is moving to a new appartment and he asked me to help him move on Saturday. He also asked me to bring my powertools and help him take down his bed and massive desk, as manual tasks, if it doesn't involve a video game console, are unknown to him. I don't have a powertool, so I went to my dad's house to steal his. While I was there, I dropped a my brother's tax documents and a few other items, and I forgot to bring the fucking drill I already forgot last weekend.
But of course, I had to realize this when I got back home, while my bro's laughing his ass off...
So I got back, another 50 minutes back and forth, this time with the damn power tool, a new speed record for a 1994 Pontiac Sunbird and a new appreciation for high gas prices...
Keeping on with the "good times" topic: In December, I wrote a post about my ambivalent feelings towards a resurgescent friendship with my ex-girlfriend. I decided, despite the tone of the post, to try it out and it went pretty well. We even chatted on the phone and it was fun, there was no awkwardness or heavy, past-related shit.
But tonight, she ended up reading my blog, digging quite far and finding some pretty nasty stuff (I'm still amazed at how quickly she found everything relevant to her, browsing through plenty of unrelated posts). Some of it I didn't even remember writing (A July 2005 post!), most stuff I don't even believe anymore(like that same July 2005 post...) or that I kept despite not being to fond of (like my doubtful comments on her wedding).
Here's the obvious: This blog is highly emotional, at least to my standards. I'm getting rid of bad vibes, talking about useless or very important things from my perspective, and it makes me feel better. But she made me realize it sometimes was at the expanses of others. Despite expressing myself and engaging nobody else than me in what remains highly subjective posts, I did go too far!
I have been quite irresponsible, as I used full names and described quite intimate moments and very biased assumptions. I just realized how shitty it could be if a friend or family of hers would have landed here after "googling" her name...
So, I did something I never did, I erased two posts and I edited others.
A blog is not a personal journal. If you want to expose your personal life, so be it, but you have to be cautious when it involves other people. I told her I didn't think she'd ever read my blog (she told me years ago she wouldn't never do so again), but it's not an excuse.
I still won't censor myself, I never did. But yes, I'll make sure I don't get others in my troubles.
At least, after a night of being my old self, making others sad and apologizing profusely, I can say I learned something, and that's the sole great part (That and apparently thriving in shit)!
Ironic how I keep doing stuff that will, years later, end up hurting the same person, no matter how I manage to do so. I don't find any comfort in realizing some things never change!
A proof I was not the right one for her. But I'll be happy to remain friends, if it's possible.
Time to get over it!
P.S: It's 3:23 AM, one of the neighbours just knocked on his damn door for what felt like an unreasonable amount of time, lit the light and ran through the stairs, hitting their 25 pairs of shoes, echoing in my room like the cardboard walls weren't even there! Fuming, images of my fist through their wall or floor makes me feel better while I sip my brother's table wine...Good times!