Video Vendredi

 

Hanging with Lexy, and she found this video.

A friend said that russian rap sounds ridiculous.

I agree, and this video isn’t russian rap…

But after the rap, we had to know that there was some other russian music other than the ridiculousness of a guy wearing a silver skull half-mask and thinking he’s the shit. ‘

Here it is.

 

Sometimes You Need a Break. Dealing with Stress.

Slightly more serious post than my other ones, but this one is something I think a good number of students (at least university/college students) may find important.

I am going to get this out of the way and say I don’t do stress well.

Or rather, I stress well, I don’t DEAL with stress well. Here’s how I think of my stress dealings:

I bottle it up, store it away since its so unpleasant to deal with. Later, when I once again get stressed, I bottle that up too, even as the aftershocks of the feeling shake up the last bottle of stress.

Unlike real life, the tremors of stress stay with me, though I ignore it, and so it slowly shakes the second, and eventually third, fourth, fifth bottles up as well, building up pressure that I also ignore (as I am so very good at it) until the bottles I use start having trouble containing it.

I feel like, at least right now, the bottles I use are plastic. Later, if I keep doing this, the bottles may be made of glass. I don’t know.

When, eventually, the bottles fizz and explode so that I have stress colouring everything, making everything sticky and gross and makes me feel like doing nothing else but clean up and throw away the stress, I do so. It is, after all, hard to focus on anything else when you have sticky, gross stress all over you.

I ignore everything else, I have trouble concentrating, I have this overwhelming urge to do nothing, to go do something else that will make me feel better, like maybe watch comedy skits, or watch shows I know I like and episodes I know are funny, or read something totally random, or something else entirely.

I’ve been working on this example and been trying to self-analyze in a realistic, objective way, and I know that I need to work on a better way of dealing with stress than bottling it up and storing it away.

The reason I say I believe my bottles to be plastic right now, is because when the bottles explode from stress overload, broken plastic doesn’t hurt or cut nearly as deeply as glass.

Wow, that sounded a bit dark, huh?

I’m just trying to say that this tendency of mine to put away stress could develop into a worse problem, or could cause me to ignore something important because it happens to be stressful.

To help counteract that, I’m doing a number of things.

I don’t quite bend over backwards to do it, but close enough

I’m trying to schedule myself better (made a schedule for the week, having classes, study times, break times, etc…). Hopefully by having something steady and schedule like in my life, I’ll have something to hold ono.

Yoga, once a week. Similar to the schedule, by having yoga, it’s consistent and, unlike the schedule, something physical. If I need to do something more exerting, I can get onto one of the exercise machines and go on for an hour.

Phone conversation with Mom at least once a week. I am used to having a support system on hand. I don’t like talking about stress to friends, because I don’t like making my friends

My family has more personality than this and my three roommates combined

feel uncomfortable. It isn’t like I’m going to be able to talk to my roommates after all. I hardly ever see them, and even if I did, I don’t particularly like them. As such, my support system is my family. I need to be able to talk with them. So I’m making sure that at least once a week, there will be a conversation. To just talk. About nothing in particular. About things happening at home, things happening in Ottawa, allowing Mom to complain about her school while I can talk about how wonderful it is to be skating. I think it’s helping. No guarantee though. Midterms are stressful.

Writing. I know it isn’t the best thing, but writing here, on a blog, is almost surprisingly stress-releasing. Even if I don’t talk about stress. To be able to put my thoughts out to an invisible crowd, it’s nice. I also still write fiction for my own, and fanfiction because I enjoy getting reviews. It helps that most reviews are positive and are very encouraging and you can’t feel useless when you get an enthusiastic review for one of your ideas. Hell, I have a number of people who review regularly for my story ‘It’s Green‘ (Harry Potter Fanfiction and yes I linked to my own story) and I can go on for endless replies in conversation with these people who I only know because they like something I’ve written enough to contact me. How awesome is that?

By the way, Mom doesn’t like that I write fanfiction, but it’s a stress reliever for me. I enjoy writing. I didn’t do NaNoWriMo this year because I promised I wouldn’t, but writing is one of my hobbies. I’m not giving it up. I’m glad my Mom understands that. Or at least I believe she does.

Aaah, stress, you give me such issues!

Boy do I need to work on this, and I believe that this IS helping, but i’s hard to be objective in things such as these. I’ve been thinking on this for so long that I could be imagining everything, and I’m sure that some invisible person out there reading this is thinking I am imagining everything, or explaining it unrealistically, or SOMETHING, but this is as close to the ‘truth’ of the matter as I can get to.

It’s very hard being objective when dealing with yourself.

I think that’s one reason why self-portraits are so hard to do. You try to make it better because you’re vain (don’t try to deny it) and want to look pretty.

Or cool, if you aren’t quite ready to admit that you think you’re pretty.

But, as I said before, I don’t do (dealing with) stress well.

But, because I’ve been able to recognize it well enough… I am also going to recognize that I need a break.

Not a full one, more like slowing down to a jog from a sprint, but a break none the less.

Next semester, my hesitant plan is to take a break from school, move back to Toronto, and (with the permission of uOttawa) take a course while in Toronto so that I’m not totally removed from doing class work.

It will be one semester, and a break from full-time class. This will be me working to get used to stress of university, while having my support system with me.

I don’t know if I would have done better having taken the first year off, but this is what I’m doing now.

I wish I had ¬†my own time machine, to go back to the beginning of the school year, maybe then I could have done a better job, but since I don’t, I’m giving myself a chance to breathe.

 

I Love Chicken-Milk!

Chicken-Milk is what one of my friends calls eggnog… hahaha, she’s so funny…

From the rather unsavoury name and by the scrunched up nose, I gathered that she didn’t like Eggnog.

I love eggnog.

And it is now on sale!!!!

How exciting is that!?!?

I was walking the other night with this friend, and we decided to go to Mac’s. As in the store, I’m not talking about a computer store though.

Mac’s is awesome… I have two within walking distance, though I only recently found out about this second, larger store that night with Friend. This other store is bigger and awesome, and sells sandwiched and tubs of Ice cream… This would be awesome on its own for ice cream’s sake, but it’s even more awesome for my sake as I was hesitating buying ice cream from the near-ish Loblaws that I go to for groceries. It would require me walking home with it melting ūüė¶ I was very sad when I left without ice cream… and now I have a place to go that’s hardly a five-minute walk away!

Score!

But the main awesomeness that I found was my Chicken-Milk.

It was hidden beside the normal milk, encased in a foreign looking carton… I’m used to the blue cartons, and I would post a picture if I could find one.

But this one was red, but clearly said in its curly writing of awesome “EGGNOG”

And I wasn’t the one to notice this.

“Oh look, eggnog…” said my unenthusiastic friend.

“WHAT?! Eggnog? Where?” said I.

She turned away, and muttered something about chicken-milk…

I, holding a tall carton of delicious, said:

“What? Chicken Milk? Where?”

I started looking for something that said ‘Chicken Milk’ as I thought that would be wild to see. I didn’t think it was right to assume that they had blended milk and chicken together, and somewhere in my mind I knew that since chickens were egg layers, that they didn’t–Couldn’t–give milk like a cow can.

Perhaps chicken stock and milk mixed together?

How strange… I wanna see it!

Friend laughs, and sort-of flops her hand in my direction.

“No, no, just eggnog. Chicken milk… drinking eggs…”

She made a face. I feel like I may have made a face back, but for different reasons.

I know that some people don’t like Eggnog, but it’s baffling to me in the same way that it’s baffling to me that some people don’t like skating. It just doesn’t make sense in my mind.

And I always think that I can change them to fit my sense of ‘right’. Liking eggnog and skating were ‘right’. I love skating and am planning on skating the canal every weekend as soon as it freezes. I love Eggnog enough that my Dad ends up buying three or four cartons of the stuff and storing it on the opposite side of the fridge to the beer. He does this every time he goes shopping, and it’s Eggnog season that has him going to the store to buy more milk AND eggnog.

I’ve learned through my mom and dad telling me to stop chugging the stuff straight to add milk to it, and it now occurs to me that by doing this I have more than twice the amount of eggnog in one carton than I do without. It means that I don’t have to fear overtaking my shared fridge with a number of cartons of the stuff.

It also means that I’m less likely to, for once, actually try to change my friends mind about eggnog. I don’t want to waste it. And calling it Chicken-Milk makes me smile a bit.

I love Eggnog…

My precious…..

GIVE ME MY PRECIOUS!

But it goes “MLEEEGH”

I like sheeps.

Dem sheepsies love me too.

I understand why people would say that hey like certain animals, but I have to say that the small, wool wearing beasties (no, not Hobbitses) are my favourite.

I also like cows.

Yes I like dogs, and cats, but of the animals that you DON’T see almost every day, I have to say sheep and cows.

Bovine and ‘Baaaa’-vine, even though most sheep don’t actually say ‘baa’ but something closer to “MLEEEGH”, both are divine to me ūüėÄ

They’re just so cute, and cows run like I’d imagine a table would run (if it could run), and sheep are awesome enough to have a part in one song by Cake (Sheep go to heaven, goats go to hell).

"Do you think she knows that Tables can't run?" "Well, she seems to think that baked goods can compose songs, so I dunno...." "True dat, true dat..." "Don't you mean 'Moo dat?'" "Funny, Moo-erfluffer"

What’s your favourite non-conventional animal? Llamas are good too as many of you might be thinking, but Llama is becoming ven more conventional, conventional enough to have it’s own short-form (ftl or French the Llama)

Uh, 13 Doodle, We have a Code Brown in Balsam

My job this past summer was working as a Maintenance Worker at Grundy Lake.

I wasn’t the person who would direct you to your site.

I wasn’t the person who helped you change sites and sold you firewood.

I wasn’t the person who put on the nature shows, telling you about bears, and bugs, and what’s what about nature.

I didn’t guide you through any of the free trails Grundy has to offer, pointing out interesting things along the way.

I wasn’t the person who told you to quiet down from partying at midnight.

I wasn’t the person who told you you have to leave your site at 2, and do you realize it’s 2:30?

I wasn’t the person who you called to deal with your noisy neighbours, who also happened to be cutting branches from the forest for their fire.

I wasn’t any of these people, but I was the person who made sure you would want to come back.

I was the person who kept the main attraction clean.

Yes, I do mean that I made sure that branches weren’t overgrowing the roads and the sites.

Yes, I do mean that I mowed grass and trimmed the trails.

Yes, I do mean that I clipped back those prickly bushes from by the parking lots, and around your site.

But when I say that I keep the main attraction clean, I do not mean nature.

I mean the toilets.

You might say I deal with the real ‘business’ of maintaining the Park.

You may laugh, scoff at the idea that the toilets are the main attraction, but would you be so willing to go camping if the only option while camping with a little more than 100 other campers (in your AREA) was a couple of thunder boxes?

This is a hole, dug approx. 6 feet into the ground, with a box with a hole in it set on top. Bring your own toilet paper, and a flashlight if it's dark.

Grundy is known for it’s privacy ratings, but we can’t exactly make this private… every once in a while we have to go and fill in the hole, dig another one a little ways off, and put the box back on top. Putting another box, or some other kind of privacy thing around it wouldn’t work.

Yes, While the back-country sites have thunderboxes, their excuse is that they are for the people who want to go roughing it. That is for the people who want to canoe across the lake with their suff, and set up tents where they can find flat places. I think there are about 4 or 5 backcountry sites in Grundy… We don’ have to go there and clip it back, we leave that to the Rangers close to the area (Ontario Parks Rangers, a summer job for people who are turning 17 the year they sign up for it, free room and board and food, minimum wage.)

For everyone else, there are the outhouses.

We clean the outhouses.

We clean them every day.

We sweep them out, get rid of webs, wipe down the seats (with cleaning spray and a rag) to each and every set of outhouses.

There are 36 sets, I believe, in Grundy.

3 of those sets are set up as one side of one outhouse is mens, and the other is women’s.

The rest have two outhouses at each spot, which means that there are 66 individual outhouses that two Maintenance workers clean.

Every day.

 

This is what one Grundy Lake outhouse looks like. Right next to it, another would be set up, but for girls. Singles would be one of these buildings, with one gender for each door.

We also paint these when the paint starts getting cracked… I think I painted about 6 sets of outhouses this past summer. My coworkers complained about t, but I liked painting them. It used up time, and I like painting in general.

The inside looks like this... But this summer we painted the insides cream rather than green.

The toilets at Grundy actually flush as well, which was nice until I realized that it means that It can also get clogged.

Ladies flushing pads, and moms (and dads too) flush diapers… Why YES it’s the perfect size to go down that hole, now lets flush it… oh, right, that adds water and makes it expand! Oh gosh, it’s clogged!

What a surprise.

Really.

Anyway, while working, we drive around in the MNR trucks, and when we get radio calls (all students were 13 _your name_, and if you were calling someone, lets say their code name was 3-4, you would say “3-4 read 13 _your name_” and end with “13 clear”. Calls for you from this person would be “13_your name_ read 3-4” ), and one of the most common were for Code Browns.

Can you guess what it is?

Well, it’s when someone misses in a big way.

I figure that some of these people are holding themselves up while taking a dump, otherwise how did they get it all over the seat? On the floor? On the walls? (methinks this last one is some REALLY upset stomach)

I’m certain some kids think it’s funny to poop in awkward places, because I found a present behind one of the toilets once.

Yeah. my pictures look kind of unreal, and not really appropriate… also, for the majority, I haven’t had my camera, and even though I’ve been blogging for ¬†while now, I still haven’t gotten to the point here I can see poop n the floor and splattered on the walls and think “Hey, I should get a picture of that.”

For the really bad ones we use a pressure washer (water tank in back of truck), but otherwise use a ‘bunny tail’.

This is a Bunny tail. No rabbits were harmed for the use of this.

Yeah. Bunny Tail is how I was introduced to it.

It’s gross, and there’s a lot of groaning about it, but we do it.

There are risks.

The nauseating smell, the campers who complain in he first place, the risk of a backwash of ‘shit-mist’ from the pressure-washer (hide behind door is the preferred method), along with the feeling of “Oh, nooooooo!” when the pressure washer runs out of gas and you have to leave the Scene of the Crime to get more….

But we do it.

Because we are the Maintenance workers.

We wear our coveralls with pride.

We clomp in our Steel-toed boots knowing that we’ve done a job-well-done.

While in our trucks, we still wave to campers, even knowing that there’s a certain percentage of assholes out there among you who we will have to deal with, them and their shit, and are happy when people wave back.

Yes, we wonder if the reason you smiled so widely is because you know we have to go clean up the smear you left behind, or if perhaps its because you’re happy that that Code Red (only on the female side, guess what it is) will soon be cleaned up, but we wave and smile anyway. (P.S. we are actually required to wave in the beginning, but after a week or so you get used to it and do it intentionally)

No, we are not Gate workers, we are not Naturalists, we are not Park Wardens.

We are Maintenance workers.

We clean up your shit.

Gone, Gone, Going…? Now? No. … Now?

I am currently waiting for laundry to be done, and feeling alternating feelings (no duh) of chest constricting stress and  fluttery anxiety, and chest constricting anticipation and fluttery excitement.

I leave for Grundy Park tomorrow, probably at the crack of dawn should I ask Dad now, and I am starting and finishing my packing today.

Yes I’m late, but I’m a procrastinator almost by nature. I’m procrastinating¬†waiting for laundry to be done, because a while ago, I had my laundry waiting for me to bring it upstairs, and it was sitting in front of our freezer, which was left open, and it leaked.

I moved my stuff after it got wet, and left it down there to be done again when the washer was next free.

Mold grew.

I washed it twice.

I am washing it again, to get the sour-ish smell from it before I go.

I am not packing my stuff into a suitcase, because¬†my Mom says that it’d be easier to pack in the car if it were in these huge, 3fx1fx2f¬†ish plastic bins, so I have a plastic bin¬†in my room, in the hall outside of my room, one downstairs by my nearly-done laundry, and one in the front room of my house.

Scratch that, I have TWO (Three)¬†in the front room, because I need one separate for sleeping things such as sheets and pj’s.

It feels very much so as if I should be going right now, but then the chest crushing gets tighter with the feeling of Holy-I’m-Not-DONE-PACKING! untill I reassure myself and my insane part that no, we aren’t leaving right yet.

And then the sane part of me thinks of something.

What if I forget something!!!

Insane hears this as well, and slaps Sane on the head.

It’s because we’re not done PACKING! Get to work we’ve got like an hour to get everything together and in the car!

 Sane runs into a wall.

DOOM!

No, we aren’t leaving untill tomorrow, I reassure myself. And Laundry cannot be rushed.

And so I stand in front of the Door of Panic with my trusty Gandalf Wizard Staff solidly blocking the way.

From myself.

*sigh* Am I sure that there is actually an insane side, and it’s not just me?

Yes. I just happen to be strongly influenced by myInsane side when writing. Every writer has this part of them, it just so happens that mine feels the need to talk to me occassionally.

Insane people are in Sane people, and neither part are going past me to the Panic Room, because a)nothing gets done there, and b) NONE SHALL PASS!

All LOTR Gandalf the Grey jokes and references aside, I shall finish the Laundry of Impending Doom, cut it down to be hidden away in the Boxes of Plastic Containment, sealed away untill they are needed to fight the foe called Nakedness.

Shoot I gotta find myself some nail clippers, and perhaps a few more pairs of wool work socks.

Did you know that Costco has awesome underwear on sale? You wouldn’t think so, but they are comfortable.

A while ago, how many days ago matters not, Mum brought me to Costco to stock up on food items that will help in my quest of survival for the coming 2 months.

Working at a park is different from working as a Ranger in many ways, and one of which is that we don’t have chefs to cook and buy¬†our food.

¬†For the last couple of weeks Dad has been storing away chili¬†and stew and hamburger patties in the freezer, either in sealed plastic¬†bags or in Tupperware , so that for at least the first two weeks of no-trips-into-town-to-buy-food I might be able to survive. I am extremely thankful that we get a lot of freezer space at Grundy (everyone, not just me, though I’d like to believe I AM that special).

I will also be leaving with print out and digital recipes of such things as stew, easy stroganoff (which is not a loose, sexually active Swedish general), salsa-couscous chicken, and many-layered salads.

We bought juice,¬†meat, some veggies, cookies (the important things), underwear (they’re nice ūüėÄ Sane: Don’t SAY that! Insane: BWAHAHA!)¬†, and a whole slew of bread for me to make my main source of sustenance for during the day: Sandwiches.

To the sound of Pocahontas’ “Savages”:

Sandwiches! Sandwiches! Hardly ever Eaten! Sandwiches! Sandwiches! Where is my Mayonnaise?!

Credited to my friends (from rangers)¬†sister. Google Map Delta. It’s a place. They live there.¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† ūüėÄ

WE ARE RUNNING OUT OF TIME!

No.

Food is packed away, and I think that I’ll go through the plastic bins tha I have already and sort out the mixes of shirts, sweaters, pants, and shorts from in them.

I will probably have way more than I need, but…

Rather have more than I need than not enough.

Right.

 BUT WHAT IF SOMETHING IS FORGOTTEN???!!!

No. Grundy is 4 hours or so away, and the Parents will be visiting fairly regularly! Back!!! Back from the gates of Panic!

YOU SHALL NOT PASS!

¬†So tomorrow I’m gone, or going, or whatever, and I’ll probably be freaking out.

By the end of the first week I’ll likely be fine, but then I’ll start being paranoid about what, exactly I’ll have forgotten.

Because I will have forgotten SOMETHING.

But that is edging around my Gandalf staff, (BWAHA!), so we shall move on.

I was procrastinating a bit earlier, reading one of the books I liberated from my Mom’s school (they have a better library, and because she’s a teacher there, she can take them out over the summer), called “The Book of Lost Things” by John Connolly. The link will bring you to his site on it.

It’s good.

Like, Really good.

Most times I can predict what will happen at the end of the book by the time I get through the first 3-5 chapters, and I had a bit of¬†a feeling about what would happen, but so many things happened that promised a slightly different outcome,¬†I couldn’t put it down.

Of course, since Lexy probably won’t be reading this untill I’m long gone, I can freely admit that instead of folding laundry a bit earlier, i was reading this. I put it away any time someone came down to the basement, and started fiddling with laundry.

I still got a lot done, even while reading it.

…Weird.

The dryer just made it’s¬†“I’m-done” jingle noise (sounds a bit like a small part of an ice-cream¬†truck’s jingle), and this is getting kind of long, so I’ll bid you all goodbye for now. Whether I post small segments about my work for the next 2 months depends on if the claim to internet access is true or not.

Ciao!

~Doodled93~

Insane: THERE’S NO MORE TIME!

P.S. Afterthought: It is now about¬†10:28 pm, and I pretty much have everything packed, but I look at my 2 bins of clothing, my 1/4 bin of work clothes, and my slightly bursting bin of sleeping¬†stuff (it has a sleeping bag and pillow in it), and I feel I am missing a lot. Clothing-wise. I know I am not anywhere done my toiletries packing, as i currently have only JUST put the all-important nail clippers in my tinier¬†toiletries¬†bin, and I have no swim towel, no shower towel, and all of my electronics (including an EXTREMELY IMPORTANT digital alarm clock) are scattered around my house. Mostly uncharged too. Anyone else finish packing and look at your stuff and thing “nope. Not done.”? Also, pj’s is underlined in red, as well as bin. That is rediculous!