Monday, October 25, 2010

I Remember

I never really thought about before how truly unique a place Fort Smith, the place of my birth really is. On a normal day you could walk down to the Rocks and watch the pelicans feed, maybe some rockpops, get back up the hill, go fishing, go see a herd of bison, visit a colony of snakes, go to Pine Lake and go for some lake fun or get on Fort Smith's own world class kayaking whitewater and brave the Rapids of the Drowned. There's mudbeaches, claybeaches, sandbeaches, tons of forest and the Wood Bison National Park to check while mountainbiking or just strolling around in the short but hot summer. I've seen +40 back home in the summer a few times. I used to just like watching and listening to the rapids. They're like a roar I haven't really heard elsewhere yet and you don't realize how strong it really is till you haven't seen it in awhile. This one biddy of ours A would take us boating and it was the bomb out at the cabins. Just basking in the sun, floating around in a tub, going tubing, or K's cabin. Haha. Good times. Pedalboating around like we owned the place. One time there was an anthrax outbreak in the bison herd and we still went to Pine Lake and they were burning bison bodies across the river. We called it the anthrax party. Or the arcade, Conibear Park and the riverview boardwalk. One time when I was a kid at school my dad was working nights then and sleeping at the time and a bear tried to break into the sliding glass backdoor! Good thing my dad was packing. Or I was biking on the highway this one time and a beaver came out of a culvert, gave me a disgusted look and jumped back into the culvert. I swear that beaver had a contemptious look. I remember one time as a kid driving with my dad and a flock of wild chickens ran out into the road and we ran over a few of them by accident and so did the other oncoming truck, haha. One time traffic had to be swerve because a porcupine decided to walk straight down main drag for awhile like he owned the place. There was this huge ditch that was like a mini lake that we'd put styrafoam stuffed pallets into the water and ride them and push ourselves around like makeshift canoes and one time someone fell into the water and it was May so it was still in the minuses at night. Man that guy was cold. One time a bat was flying around in my buddies house so he grabbed a tennis racket and swatted it right out of the air. We used to jump off my buddies lofts onto the couches like wannabe stuntmen. In the summer there the trees glow a brigt green, green everywhere. Infinite skies that shoot out color and contrast. I remember great campfires too, those smores. Haha. I remember these guys I knew way back built the craziest system of treeforts that were more like treecabins with multilevels and connected to the other treecabins.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Self Realization

I'm beginning to realize that in my time I have talked alot of shit, talked a big game and said so many things over the years I have no idea what it adds up to. What I now know is is that without taking responsibility for the direction of my own life, what good are all these big ideas? What good is a bunch of big talk without the action to back it up? Sooner or later people realize their own hollowness and see room for self improvement. All the excuses in the world can't take away failure or self destruction and accomplishment can't be taken away either. Sometimes life humbles you but for the better, sometimes you humble yourself by letting your weaknesses defeat your strengths. No one ever hears about the good you do, strangers only hear about the bad. We all have our weaknesses, it's how you deal with them that make you stand out in life. I don't want anymore excuses from myself to myself anymore, that's bunk and lame and ridiculous. I am thankful for all my friends, family and anyone else who has given me the love and support over the years and now that I think of it they deserve a better me, a me that is more intune with myself than worrying about what others think. Time for a new outlook. Cheers.

Friday, May 28, 2010

The Things I Want The Most

In the future all I want is hard working, resourceful, appreciative, self-sufficient children raised to be atheletic, musically talented and electronically inclined with networking skills off the charts. I don't want to raise obese, skilless, overly dependent, emotionally stunted piles of jello with no self esteem. Why do so many parents today raise infants to be children who turn thirty and are still not able to move out of the basement? I want to raise children to be adults who are out of the house by eighteen so the wife and I can enjoy the whole house to ourselves again and again. Is that so bad? I would like to see the helicopter parenting trend go the way of the dodo bird. I wonder if its just a social experiment of modern parents or if its here to stay and be the current standard of parenting? If it is I truly fear for the future of our country. If not, then no fear! : )

Friday, May 21, 2010

Round For The Boys

If it's good enough........
You know we're built tough..........
And we're out for you......
Round for the boys....
Yeah we die in wars....
Drink in bars.....
And crash big cars......
It was all for you.........
Round for the boys....
Just to see that smile........
See that grin.....
Makes it worth it........
Again and again.....
I've made a fool of myself....
Ruined my health.....
In front of this whole town......
I spiraled down......
When I stole that car.....
And drove it to that bar....
Now you're mad at me....
Round for the boys.......
And I had those pills.....
Chased those thrills.........
Paid that bill.....
So what.....
Yeah we're the boys........
We got the toys....
And make the noise.......
And it's was all for you..........
Just to see that smile.....
See that grin.......
Makes it worth it...............
Round for the boys.......
And we drew the maps .....
Set those traps .....
Take lots of crap but .....
Always want more ....
When the going gets rough ...
You know we'll get tough ...
You can count on me ...
For you .....
Yeah we're the boys........
We got the toys....
And make the noise.......
And it's was all for you..........
Just to see that smile.....
See that grin.......
Makes it worth it...............
Round for the boys.......

I'm Going to JJ's

The 3 red ones first came followed by two orange ones
Chased down with the juice all in the name of fun
I just wanna be myself I hope you don't mind
I can offend people from time to time *let's go
I'm -a going -ta JJ's my life revolves around my paydays
It's an electric revolution i wanna refresh
This week is burnin 'red

Four small blue squares on the tongue
Then we turned into young rich rock stars
People at the rocks there's a party at the pit
But don't follow me do as you see fit *cause
I'm -a going -ta JJ's my life revolves around my paydays
It's an electric revolution I wanna refresh
This week is burning red

Status Quo

What are we fighting for?
Do you even know anymore?
Will you run when the sky crashes down?
The writings on the wall we can't ignore.

Where does the money go?
Do you even care to know?
You'll do anything for your status quo.

Keep your mouth shut and you'll be fine.
Keep your eyes on the floor.
Scratch my back and I'll scratch yours.
So just don't rock the boat.

They're trying to hurt democracy.
So they can benefit financially.
Who's side will you stand on when the soldiers come?

Where does the water go?
Will all the oil turn to a black snow?
How expensive will fresh water be?
Will it cost the same for you and me?

Someday we'll have to pay for fresh air.
Someday there won't be any trees.
Till then just keep cruising in your SUV's.

No matter what I buy won't make me happy.
No matter what I own won't make me see.
There's no pill to take to fit in society.
Spare the rod, spoil the adult appropriately.

You'll do anything for your status quo
You'll say anything for your status quo
You'll hurt anyone for your status quo

We Got

Why're you making out like you had it raw
If you only knew what people do
Have you ever stopped to think of things you do
Sometimes doing the right thing it could hurt you too

It's not so bad you got it 'cause we got
SUV's and DVD's and VCD's and MP3's
PDA's, PVR's sat phone cell phone hydrocar

Why you making out like you had it lean
If you only knew where I've been
Have you ever stopped to think of things you seen
Sometimes doing thing right thing the will to intervene

It's not so bad you got it 'cause we got
SUV's and DVD's and VCD's and MP3's
PDA's, PVR's sat phone cell phone hydrocar

So the next time you're in doubt
Think of those who go without
It's not so bad.........
Slow down you're not that hot

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Gulf of Mexico Oil Slick

I can't believe that oil spill is still going strong in the Gulf of Mexico. The reports keep coming in of how the oil has accelerated in it's pressure ever since the first leak and the amount that has escaped the underground ocean pocket is far greater than originally thought. It's been spilling from it's undersea chamber since March 20th when an offshore oil rig exploded killing eleven rig workers and causing a very difficult spill roughly a kilometer and a half under the surface where the water pressure is roughly twentyfive hundred pounds per square inch and freezing cold waters which make any efforts to cap it next to impossible due to the extremely dangerous conditions. The undrwater spill has been spraying roughly five thousand barrels of oil (800,00 litres) a day into the Gulf for pretty much a month now. The first efforts to cap it failed, they lowered a huge concrete cone down there to funnel the oil flow and capture it's escape but underwater temperatures caused the space in the top part of the cone to freeze making the concrete cone useless and costing BP Oil even more financially and losing them even more face with the public. Oil companies are a necessity to our way of life for better or worse and this could have happened to any company. Risk is the only assurance in such business. I only hope we can get a hold on this issue before there is permament and long term damage to that area in the ocean. Oceanlife there will be affected for decades and as the Gulf of Mexico is a spawning ground for so many different types of fish we're going to see a generation gap in many species for a very long time. There's also going to be a massive "dead zone" of de-oxigenated water in the Gulf which will make plant life in the area die off and to grow back very difficult. Time will tell. Vacations to coastal Florida? Not likely. The only places I can compare this to are old nuclear testing sites which are pretty much environmental disaster zones which require at least fifty years for some of the damage to abate. What will we learn from this? No idea. Beachfront property in Florida might have just got a whole lot cheaper.

Friday, May 7, 2010

What's The Deal?

I used to work sales. I have to say selling anything electronic to a baby boomer is one of the worst experiences in sales anyone could ever have the curse of going through. They always want to buy the cheapest piece of electronic crap they can find with no understanding of "you get what you pay for" when it comes to electronics. The thing about baby boomers is they were raised in a time when the bigger, badder, more energy using cars, trucks, vans, SUV's were the optimal purchase. So the end result is they don't think it strange to throw down sixty thousand dollars on a massive gas-guzzling street-terrorizing roadhog on four wheels and yet to them the idea of buying a four hundred dollar cell phone that takes high quality digital pictures, has internet access, takes high quality full motion video, holds videos, pictures, music and other things either frivolous or offensive. I remember verbally jousting with baby boomers insisting I drop the price of items such as Blackberry's or iPod's below cost because "It's just a little bit of plastic, it should be free anyway" almost like we should have had a bin so when you walk in the store you just grab a Blackberry on your way in and an iPod on your way out. They have no idea how much research and development that goes into each and every new item that comes out on todays' market. Maybe it's a generational gap of technological understanding. Most of them don't own them but want to but don't want to take the time to learn how to operate their own things. I remember one time a mother and her daughter came in to purchase a cell phone since the girl lost her cell and the mother was there to buy a replacement. I remember the daughter's total embarressment at her mother's harsh insistence that I give her a $279.99 cell phone for free since, "it's so small, how can it be that much? I don't want to pay." The girl was so embarressed and just told me, "sorry, my mom doesn't get it, at all." Well baby boomers, I have to say those little cell phones that can check the weather, check your facebook, look up googlemaps, do your banking or take videos and pictures in real time and send them online ARE worth the several hundred dollars and NO they are not free and never will be. The day they are will be the day General Motors and Ford give away brand new vehicles for free no questions asked. After all, a vehicle is "just" a bunch of metal, rubber and plastic. I remember the skin on my neck literally crawling when anyone over forty came to buy anything electronic.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

My New Physical Training Regimen

Lower Body - Day One
1.Jump Squat/Speed Pull/Hang Clean/Snatch/Power Clean/High Pull 9X2
2.Rack Pull/Rack Squat/Reverse Hack Rack Pull/Sumo Rack Pull 6 Rep Max
3.Leg Press/One Leg Press 6X6
4.Decline Sit-Up/Hanging Knee Twist/Cable Crunch 10X10

Upper Body - Day One
1.Incline Barbell Press/Bench Press/Decline Barbell Press/Gorilla Press 4X6
2.Swissball Flye/Incline Flye/Dumbell Flye 3X6
3.Dips 3XY
4.Pullups 4XY
5.Bent Row/Widegrip Bent Row/T-Bar Row/Narrowgrip Bent Row 3X6
6.Widegrip Pulldown/Seated Row/Onehand Seated Row/Narrowgrip Pulldown 3X6 + 1X20
7.Barbell Shrug/Dumbell Shrug/Smith Machine Shrug 3X6

Lower Body - Day Two
1.Overhead Barbell Squat/Squat and Press/One Legged Dumbell Squat 4X8
2.One Leg Press/Leg Press 1X20
3.Leg Extension/One Leg Extension 4X6 + 1X20
4.Smth Calf Raise/Seated Calf Raise 4X6
5.Body Bridge 3XY

Upper Body - Day Two
1.Dumbell Press/Swissball Dumbell Press/Incline Dumbell Press/Neutral Dumbell Press/Seated Dumbell Press 4X6
2.Rack Press/Gorilla Press/Closegrip Rack Press/Floor Press/Incline Rack Press/Push Press/Reversegrip Rack Press 6 Rep Max
3.French Press/Decline French Press/Incline French Press 3X6
4.Overhead Rope Extension/Overhead Dumbell Uni-Extension/Dumbell Kickback/Overhead Dumbell Bi-Extension 3X6 + 1X20
5.Barbell Curl/Bent Barbell Curl/Standing EZ Bar Curl 3X6
6.Alternate Curl/Incline Alternate Curl/Hammer Curl/Incline Hammer Curl 3X6 + 1+20
7.Cable Upright Row/Dumbell Lateral/Upright Row/Cable Lateral 3X6 + 1X20

Lower Body - Day Three
1.Squat/Deadlift/Front Squat/Reverse Hack Squat 3X10
2.Stiffleg Deadlift/Good Morning/Hyperextension 3X8
3.Dumbell Lunges/Barbell Lunges 3X6
4.Leg Curl/One Leg Curl 3X10
5.Swissball Cable Crunch/Decline Board Twist/Hanging Knee Raise 10X10

Upper Body - Day Three
1.Incline Barbell Press/Flatbench Dumbell Press/Incline Dumbell Press/Bench Press/Decline Barbell Press/Gorilla Press 5X10
2.Dumbell Row/Dumbell Pullover/Bent Dumbell Row/Cable Pullover 5X10
3.V-Bar Pressdown/Pressdown/Dumbell French Press/Rope Pressdown/Reversegrip Cable Pressdown 4X6
4.Dumbell Preacher Curl/Cable Preacher Curl/Hammer Preacher Curl/Floor Cable Two-Handed Curl 4X6 + 1X 20
5.Barbell Wrist Curl/Dumbell Wrist Curl 3X12/Barbell Grips 3X30 seconds

Monday, May 3, 2010

The New Place

Spacious, big bedrooms, there's a dog, we will be getting a cat soon but it's cold! It's a very drafty house and it gets nailed by the winds coming off of the marsh. Oh well, the spaciousness makes up for any downsides to the setup like the fact that it'll be two weeks until the internet is setup. I like it and I know I will grow to love it more. It's great, it's cozy and it's home.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Thornton Effect

Been living in a room with barely any furniture sleeping on a floor in a pile of my bagged personal belongings. I can't wait to move into my new place, set up and just live there. After living on campus three years in the "mature" upperclassmen student house at Mount Allison University I can't wait to just BE in my OWN space. Those three years in Thornton were awesome though and I wouldn't take it back for the world. Now for summer. Being in a new place, being in a new space will be great. After three years in residence not counting summers was a truly amazing experience and the things you learn about other people, learn about yourself, learn about society and learn about the individual will propel me forward for a long, long time. There's even something I call the "Thornton Effect" and looking back I'm not sure if I coined the term exactly but I know I had it's effect in my life. To define something as amorphous as the Thornton Effect isn't easy per se but I'll give it a shot. A house like Thornton houses roughly eighty five people from multiple countries, multiple political backgrounds from all over Canada. Many different personalities all packed into one of the smallest houses on campus who have to get along, or at least coexist in the same cohabitat for eight months. So what it is is that when all these people first get together the first two weeks is like a hormonal dustup social shakedown with people's jigs and jags clashing in a wonderful smash of social friction. Friendships are made, people butt heads, people make their initial reputations for better or worse. Bold leaders emerge, blind followers follow. People's imperfections almost caricture and cartoonize individuals and reputations are built. If you're a whiny person you'll be see as negative. If you drink all the time you'll be seen as self destructive. If you are friendly and supportive people will want you around. In time individuals figure out it's easier to be easygoing and accept people's differences rather than taking a stand on every issue and pissing everybody off. Essentially people learn that they have to make sense, they figure out that their actions affect others and these reactions come back, good or bad, to the origin of the source. A good example was when I was talking at the dinner table with a fellow Thorntonite and I told her my age and she said, "You're SO OLD!" I took it in stride, she was twenty but a VERY mentally young twenty and I didn't feel like calling her on it. Can you imagine meeting someone of African descent and saying right in their face, "You're SO BLACK!" or meeting an overweight person and saying loudly in their face, "You're SO FAT!" She was totally oblivious in every way that she discriminated against me because of something I couldn't control. My age. I'm proud of my age, my experiences, my travels and even proud of my flaws. A few months later I called her on it ad she was a little embarressed but in time she understood how and why people see each other. Not for what we are (tall, short, thick, thin, white, black, yellow, red, straight, gay, athletic, overweight) but for what we do to others. University isn't high school and if the one thing I learned in university so far is that what you do follows you, how you treat people is how they'll treat you and being oblivious to others will bring about some humbling experiences but the best part is is that we can learn from them. If you don't learn from them due to pride you will be seen as socially self destructive by the majority and avoided by most. The golden rule really pays off, I just wish more people knew it. After spending time in Thornton I'd say people are more considerate, more easygoing, more aware and have more true confidence than they did the first day they walked in there. I believe in the Thornton Effect and hope that it lives on.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Summer 2010

I hope this summer is a blast. I can live without fields of empty drunkeness and I could really do with a nice summer rounded out with wholesome activities. Tired of being a bog of unhealth. I am 28 and three years of university has made me progress in many ways it also has made me regress in a few others and I wouldn't mind a calm, relaxed summer to prepare for the next academic year that's coming up. BBQ'ing? Yes. Fondue party? Yes. Running outside alot? Yes. Intense weight training? Yes. Occasionally dragging a couch outside on a sunny day and playing guitar on it? Yes. Movies with friends? Yes. Right now summer is waiting to arrive behind these gray clouds and cool wind gusts that raise the gooseflesh. I feel bad for not being able to go outside and enjoy myself today. I guess it'll be one of those "TV days" dammit. Once May 1st hits I'll be back on a health kick like no one's business working out harder than an upper middle class yuppie. Maybe its practice for when I'm a yuppie. Every year I take about three to four weeks off of running and the gym, once around December, another around the latter half of April to let my body and mind recharge and I'm at the end of my April break right now. My first couple weeks back in the gym will be very painful and my running sessions will be very wheezy. I wonder what this summer will bring. Any ideas? Now to make breakfast for lunch....

Vampire Edmonton Oilers 1999

It was a dream during grade eleven. Looking back I blame the hormones, maybe it was stress, maybe I was worried about the future. Who knows? The sheer wonder of youth's audacity can never be understood and understanding my own would never work. So at this time in my life I would wake up around seven a.m, get my brother ready for school, make breakfast for the both of us and set him on his way to the bus for 8 a.m. Sometimes I would doze off on the couch while CBC played in the background (we didn't have cable, a car or hot water if it matters) and enjoy my twenty minutes of quiet time before I had to leave for high school and make the ten or so minute walk. My dad would have already been gone to work for about two hours before I even woke up for my weekday routine. In my slow doze I somehow went down the tunnel of sleep and found myself in a befuddling dream, one of those where you don't know you're dreaming until the very end and the moment of clarity hits you.
*enter dream*
I was an agent of some clandestine police agency Canada doesn't like to admit exists. I was dressed in a dark gray suit, had prescription shades on and had an earpiece so I could hear orders. My friends and I all were on the job investigating the random disappearences of people during Edmonton Oiler games. The West Edmonton Mall and the Skyreach Centre are conjoined like some proud Anglo megalith superstructure stretching for six city blocks in any given direction. We had to seek any revelant information, any lead, anything. After we systematically swept the place by breaking up into many teams of two we only had one last place to check in the whole area and the game was roaring, the crowd's ebb and flow could be heard like a freight train and we were very high strung and kicked down the locker room doors for the Edmonton Oilers after flashing our badges to security. What lay behind those doors made me realize I was asleep and obviously my mind was being ridiculous. The Edmonton Oilers locker room was lined with coffins colored blue, white and orange and a number was on each coffin along with the players' names. There was a "C" and an "A" on a couple coffins by the front. The Edmonton Oilers were vampires and lured select fans back here and drank their blood like a team activity. My mind shook and I didn't wake up yet, I just realized I was asleep and in that moment my point of view shifted and I lifted out of where I was standing and started floating up and passed through the roof only to see the worst part of it all. This West Edmonton Mall/Skyreach Centre megalith was on an iceberg and was floating away into the darkness of a night time ocean. With that revelation I woke up with a startled grunt and realized I was late for class.
*exit dream*