Not To Be Trusted With Knives

The Internet’s leading authority on radicalized geese

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Dead Pen Society

I’d like to take a moment to pay tribute to these fallen soliders, who gave their lives so valiantly as I took notes in class and studied for my many exams in recent days:

Dead Pen Society

Your sacrifice will not be forgotten.

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Vote For Rick or Bears Will Eat Your Kidneys

Remember my friend Rick? Well, in his ongoing life of being awesome he is, not surprisingly, doing something awesome. Something that you need to give him a little help with.

The thing that he is doing, which I’m sure you are undoubtedly going to help him with, is the Big Mountain Challenge through Banff Lake Louise Tourism. The winner of said challenge gets an officially official mountain guide to take them on hikes up three peaks in Banff National Park AND they get up to $25,000 donated to a charity of their choosing. Rick, being a kidney scientist extraordinaire, has naturally chosen The Kidney Foundation of Canada as the charity that will get the money when he wins this contest. Which he will. Because you will help him.

Rick sings showtunes to keep bears away while on hikes. Because keeping bears away is just sensible.

And here’s where you come in. You need to go here and vote for Rick. And because voting for Rick is so much fun, you can do it twice. Or three times. Per day. Every day. Do it on your phone. Do it in multiple browsers. Vote every single day between now and the deadline (July 27). Just do it!

And then once you have exhausted all your voting opportunities, go to Banff National Park website at https://www.facebook.com/banffnationalpark “Like” their page, and comment that you want Rick to win!

Because if you don’t, bears will eat your kidneys.

bears will eat your kidneys

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Fire Alarm is Alarming

Fire ExitI was totally going to write an interesting blog posting today, but then there was a fire alarm in my building and I just spent the last 45+ minutes standing outside my building instead of blogging from the comfort of my couch as I intended. Granted, this was better than the fire alarm we had a few weeks ago at 2 in the morning (!), but it still kind of sucks, as I have much better things to do be doing, thankyouverymuch. And neither of these incidents were actual fires – something about a “leak in the boiler” set off the alarm, whatever that means. On the plus side, I met a few of my neighbours and got to chat with them for a bit, so that was nice. I also thought to bring the tea that I was drinking at the time outside with me, so that made the whole thing somewhat more civilized.

Anyways. Now I’m sleepy and ready for bed, so instead of an actually interesting blog posting, you get this bulleted list of random whatnots:

  • Went for a run after work today, but my right foot was not too happy about it. Anytime I was running uphill – and let’s face it, I live in New West, so I’m always running either up or down hills – it decided to express it’s displeasure in the form of pain. But I wasn’t going to let a little thing like that get in my way, so I kept running. My time wasn’t very good, but at least I did it! I’m sure my chiropractor will love me tomorrow when I ask him to yet again adjust my feet bones!
  • Since I ignored my foot’s request to not pound it repeatedly on the ground, it decided to exact its revenge in the form of a massive blister on the sole of my foot! You win this time, foot!
  • Actually, I think the blister is likely the result of the fact that I bought a new pair of shoes and I put my fancy pants insoles from my old shoes into my new shoes. But they are molded to the shape of my old shoe + my foot, not my new shoe + my foot. I think I need to cook them to get them into the right shape!
  • I would totally take a picture of my awesome blister, but my camera is b0rked. In related news, I need to buy a new camera. Anyone have any recommendations?

Image Credit: Posted by Alyson Hurt on Flickr.

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I Have Done All The Things

OhmyFSM, I am so tired.

This last few weeks has been absolutely killer, but I have, apparently, lived to tell the tale! Believe it or not, I managed to complete all the things on my “to do” leading up to this weekend. It got pretty crazy by the end – pretty much every day last week I came home from work, sat down at my computer and starting doing homework and did homework until it was time for bed, breaking only to eat the dinner that Devon, FSM bless him, had made. But the fact is, it’s now Sunday night and I’m on the other side of two exams1, three papers, and one presentation.

Class ended early today – 12 pm instead of 5 pm – giving our class a chance to have a “we survived the first half of the core!” party. It was pretty awesome to have a chance to chat with classmates in a purely social circumstance. We spend so much time together in classes and working on group projects, but to chat with people we haven’t worked directly with and find out about people’s interests outside the program2 was really nice. The wine and beers and appies were muchly appreciated too!

I came home after the party and had the mother of all naps3. And then I did something I haven’t done in ages. I went to the grocery store. I watched some TV shows. And I folded laundry! Seriously, I had three laundry buckets full of *clean* clothes that I just haven’t had time to fold4.

And now I’m ready for bed! I will sleep the sleep of the just and a week full of work where I don’t also have imminent school deadlines hanging over my head. I mean, there are deadlines, because there is no rest for the wicked and our summer “break” consists of many projects and readings and such-like, but I feel like I can at least breath a bit now.

And now – a list!

Things I’m Going To Do Now That the Month From Hell Is Over:

cook awesome dinners every night this week
go for a run tomorrow night5
bake something yummy and bring it into the office, just because
re-connect with friends that I have barely seen since before pre-core to see if they are, in fact, still my friends
set up my “to do” list of tasks I need to complete over the summer6

  1. Three if you count the take home exam that was do about a week ago. []
  2. If Professor Steve is reading this, rest assured that everyone’s interests outside the program are purely theoretical – we have done nothing by homework since the start of pre-core, I promise. []
  3. Partly from exhaustion due to overwork, partly due to being two-glasses-of-wine drunk []
  4. In all honestly, I folded the laundry while watching the TV show because (a) I’m so used to having to be efficient and don’t seem capable of only doing one thing at a time, and (b) I hate household chores with the fire of a thousand suns, so I must distract myself so that I don’t notice I’m doing them. Similarly, I emptied the dishwasher while talking to my sister on the phone. []
  5. I did manage to squeeze in a few runs in the past couple of weeks, because they truly do keep me sane, but not as many as I would have liked []
  6. Did I mention there is no rest for the wicked?? []

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A Day in the Life

As promised, here’s the Prezi that I made for my “A Day in the Life of the Evaluation Specialist” presentation:


I doesn’t make a whole lot of sense without me standing in front of it and speaking words, but it does highlight my ability to find free stock images. And, hey, I never promised coherence and understandability. Those things are considered bonuses here at Not To Be Trusted With Knives.

Now I have to get back to this… see you next week1!

  1. Assuming I survive the shit ton of homework I have to get done in the next 4 days! []

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FaceTime With The Doctors

I’m doing a presentation at an All Staff meeting at work next week on “A Day in the Life of the Evaluation Specialist”. I figure since most people have no idea what I do and about half the time I get introduced as an epidemiologist, this might be a neat opportunity to spread the word about the profession and all the wonderfulness that is evaluation1.

I am not an epidemiologist

I am not an epidemiologist. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Some of my best friends are epidemiologists.

So I’ve been thinking about all the cool stuff I do and, more specifically, what cool visuals I could use to represent said cool stuff2. Well, one of the cool things I’m doing is collaborating on a grant application with Dr. Dan. And when one collaborates with someone who is thousands of kilometers away, one must avail themselves of modern conveniences. Like FaceTime. And so today I badgered Dr. Dan into a Facetime photo shoot.

This is the shot I’m going to use in my presentation:
Facetime

We look like we are engaged in, and enjoying, talking about our science-y brain thoughts!

But, of course, a photo shoot with the likes of the two of us couldn’t help but go from reasonable shots of us FaceTiming, like this:

IMG_0074

… to something like this:

IMG_0078

Dr. Dan, deep in thought

 

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Dr. Dan, even deeper in thought

 

 

IMG_0083

Trying to actually capture a picture of Dr. Dan’s deep thoughts by photographing his brain through his eyeball. That’s totally scientifically possible.

 

 

IMG_0080

Dr. Dan highly approves of our grant application plans.

 

 

IMG_0089

The science is so bright, we need sunglasses!

 

Of course, I’ll post my Prezi once I have it finished, because I know that you are all dying to know how an Evaluation Specialist spends her days!

  1. Also, I’m an attention whore. []
  2. Because I have a hate on for text in presentation slides. []

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All My -iversaries

While I’ve been busy with this whole being-way-too-busy life I’ve got going on right now, I appear to have missed both my cariversary and my workiversary! Hard to believe that my baby car is three years old! She’ll be in kindergarten before I know it!

Equally hard to believe is that I’ve been at my job for three years! I have to say that I’m still loving my job. In addition to my AWESOME grant, I’ve got a couple of other grant applications in various stages of admission and a couple of publications in the works. I’ve just started working on some really cool new projects – and I even have an amazing Master’s student working for me this summer – with another student potentially coming down the pike1!

Gosh, looking at that – in combination with this – and I can really see why I’m forgetful about such things as -iversaries and why I’m falling asleep at my keyboard at 10 pm. Methinks it’s time to hit the hay! G’night!

Update: I also missed my fifth half marathon-iversary! Five years ago I ran my first ever half marathon! And now I’ve run 6 of them, with #7 on the way! w00t!

  1. I may or may not be trying to build an empire. []

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My Dad’s Birthday

Drinking a Timmy'sA year ago, I wrote a birthday blog posting for my dad. When I wrote it, I had no idea that it would be the last birthday my dad would live to see. I had no idea that I’d only see him twice in person after writing that post1. I really did not expect to be reading that posting at his funeral just 8 months later.

When I look back, I’m really, really happy that I wrote that posting when I did. My dad was really touched by it – he knew that I’d learned a lot from him and that I loved him. I’m sad that there’s so much he’s going to miss out on – and I miss him so much. But at least I know that he knew how much he meant to me – and I got to tell him that not just before he died, but when we all thought he’d be around for many, many years to come.

Today, I drank a Tim Horton’s coffee in my Dad’s honour. Here’s to you, Daddy. I love you.

  1. In June 2011, when I went to Ontario for a family reunion and in February 2012, when I went to be with him and my family for his brain surgery. []

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Run, Dr. Beth, Run

When I started my MBA, I decided that there were certain things that I would have to give up in order to make time for school. One of those things that I said I was going to sacrifice was training for half marathons. As it turns out, I’m a filthy, filthy liar!

The thing is, at first I did give up on my running ways. Which resulted in my gaining 10+ lbs and feeling like a big pile of crappity crap. And then, a few weeks ago while out on one of the few runs I’d allowed myself to go on this year, I remembered how good it felt to run. How much my body loves to move. How refreshed my brain feels after working out my body. And I came to the realization that I just can’t afford to keep putting off my health. I mean, I have two years left in this program1 – can I really just say, “I’ll worry about being healthy two years from now!”? I’m too old for that.

Now, I know that there are only so many hours in the day. But I ca,e to the recognition that I’d truly rather be fit-and-B-student than fat-and-an-A-student2. I’m learning a hellava lot in school and they give us a hellava lot to do, but with a little bit of organization, I can get what I need to get done  – remembering that I don’t have to have the top mark in the class – and still make time for running. I *have* to make time for running. Plus, my brain works a lot more efficiently when I’m exercising regularly, so if I can fit in an hour of running after work and then do my homework after that in a much more focused way, I’m golden.

A short while later, while out on another run, I came to another important realization3. The Victoria Half Marathon is in the beginning of October, which means the lion’s share of the training for it occurs during the summer. As in when I don’t have classes4. And I know from past experience that if I don’t have a race that I’m training for, I just don’t get out running. So I came home from that run an announced to Devon, “We should run the Victoria Half Marathon!” To which he immediately agreed5.

And that’s how this happened:

Registered!

Well, actually, that’s an oversimplification. I went online to register for the race, but I got hung up for a while on the question “What would you like mentioned about you when you cross the finish line?” You see, when you run in these races, you have a timing chip on your shoe that records your race time. But it also means that the race announcers see a list of people’s names as they cross the finish line. So it appears that they are giving you the option to write in a little something so that instead of just announcing your name and city, they can add some excitement to the announcing by saying a little something about you. Of course, there’s so many people running the race that they won’t be able to say everyone’s name, so I figured I wanted to put something catchy in the hopes that the announcer actually says mine. But what to say?

Of course, I asked some friends, and Dr. Dan came up with:

zombies! run!

Because how hilarious would it be for the announcer to yell out to all the runners that the undead are hot on their heels?

Then I thought maybe this one would be funny:

SH eats kittens

But I figured that there would be 0% chance that they announcers would go for that. So I finally settled on an eternal truth after all races:

post-race beer

And while we are on the topic of running, did you know that yesterday was National Running Day (NRD)? Naturally, I celebrated by going for a run6. Happily, the running gods decided to bless us on NRD with the only day of not-raining we are going to get this week. But they also made it threaten to rain, with a few sprinkles here and there, to motivate me to run faster in hopes of avoiding the potential-rain. The running gods are nice like that. In the end, when I got home from my run, I checked my trusty Runkeeper App, which I use to track all my runs, and found that I had, in fact, run a better pace than I had been of late, and also that I’d run an awesome distance of awesomeness:
NRD

6.66 km! Tee hee7!

Anyhoo, all that to say that I’m back on the running bandwagon – though I don’t expect to be running as much as I did in the carefree days when I wasn’t a student. But I will at least do all the long runs in my training program and at least another run or two per week. Training officially starts on Sunday! Squee!

  1. Oh dear god, 2 years??? []
  2. To be more accurate, I’m only speaking of my own individual marks when it comes to this. For group work, I understand that other people are more concerned with marks, so group work always comes first and I’m always willing to go the extra mile for group work, at the expense of my individual work. And, so far, I’m firmly in the A range for both group and individual work despite having spent some time on being active, so I think this is something that I can manage. []
  3. See. I told you running makes me think better! []
  4. I do have a big group project to work on, but I’ll have much more flexibility over my schedule than when I have classes every third weekend. []
  5. See. I told you Devon is made of awesome! []
  6. After my teleconference with my project group from school and before coming home and reading about Business Ethics. See, I told you I could do all the things! []
  7. Don’t look at the “current pace”. It’s slow because it takes a minute for me to take my iPhone out of my arm band, unlock the screen, and stop the timer []

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My To-Do List Makes Me Want To Cry

I’m resurfacing after a weekend of classes! Had two exams this past weekend – marketing and IT management – and started three new subjects – stats1, strategy, and ethics.

Now, we only have one more weekend of classes2 before the summer break3, but look what we have to do in the time leading up to, and shortly after, the next weekend of classes:
To Do

I hate you, To-Do List. I hate you long time.

The only thing about this list that is keeping me from crying is that it’s all so freaking interesting! Well, except for Finance. I hate you, Finance. Hate you long time. But I love OBHR4, strategy is super cool, my group and I have picked a fascinating case  study to do for ethics assignment #2, and ethics assignment #1 is to write a personal career ethics plan, which totally rocks. And the Decision Brief is about a health care issue, so I’m excited about that too! If only I had three months to do this all in, instead of three weeks!

At any rate, expect blogging around here to (continue to) be pretty light. And if you know me in real life – well, see you sometime in July!

  1. Now, you are probably thinking, “Stats? Don’t you *teach* stats, Dr. Beth?” And you would be right. I do, in fact, teach stats. But stats is part of the MBA program, so I’m taking stats! Fortunately, the stats prof is amazing, so I spent most of the class writing down ideas that I can steal use in the stats class that I teach. Of course, I’m putting an insane amount of pressure on myself to get 100% on both my stats assignments because, holy hell, my honour and reputation as a sexy statistician is on the line! []
  2. June 22-24 []
  3. Where by “break” I mean “no classes, but a huge freaking group project to complete. []
  4. Organizational Behaviour/Human Resources. []