Not To Be Trusted With Knives

The Internet’s leading authority on radicalized geese

By

Stuff I Want To Do When I’m Done My MBA

As I’ve been talking about the end of my MBA program being nigh, I find myself constantly defending my claim that “I’m not going to do anymore school! I swear!” My friends and colleagues are skeptical of this claim1. And, really, who can blame them? I’ve said it before and it wasn’t true. I’m like the schoolgirl who cried wolf. But I really, really mean it this time!

However, I do have to admit that I am kind of addicted to learning – I am insatiably curious and I want to KNOW ALL THE THINGS! But I think it’s time to turn to the less academic-y things that I want to learn. Like, for example:

  • how to surf
  • how to SCUBA dive
  • how to speak French
  • how to properly shoot a hockey puck2
  • how to code3

Other things I plan to focus my attention on in post-MBA land include:

  • travel to all the places ever4!!
  • training properly for the Hollywood Half Marathon so that I can break the elusive 2 hour mark
  • writing more5
  • reading for fun more (I’ve already joined a book club!)
  • cooking proper meals6
  • skiing
  • sleeping7

And speaking of sleep, I’m heading there now. Because I have a full day of running, studying, hockeying, and more studying ahead of me tomorrow. The end is nigh… but I’m not quite there yet.

  1. I’ve had basically the same conversation with, no exaggeration, at least a dozen people in the last week or so. It goes like this:

    Me: I’m so excited that my class next Monday is the last class I will ever have to go to!

    Other Person: Right. Until you do your next degree.

    Me: I’m never going to do another degree!

    Other Person: < laughs uncontrollably > []

  2. My shot is the lamest hockey shot to ever be shot. []
  3. OK, maybe this one is a bit academic-y. But it’s cool. All the cool kids code. []
  4. Some destinations of interest – off the top of my head and in no particular order – include: NYC, Paris, Italy, Iceland, Australia, Peru, Japan, and Newfoundland & Labrador and Nova Scotia (to complete the set of all the Canadian provinces), Northwest Territories and Nunavut (to complete the whole country). And I already have plans for Hollywood and San Fran in the spring! W00t! []
  5. Here on the blog, but also in my journal. Oh journalling, how I’ve missed you! []
  6. I’ve been eating way too much prepared stuff for the past two years and I really miss whipping up my dinners from scratch! []
  7. Glorious, glorious sleep. How I have missed you! []

By

Because I Am A Glutton For Punishment

At the end of NaBloPoMo, the NaBloPoMo people sent an email saying “Way to go and/or not, depending on if you actually did blog everyday in November”1 and “hey, why don’t you try blogging everyday for yet *another* month?”2  Apparently, the theme for December3 is “mitzvah” – which means, basically, doing good deeds.  In the words of the NaBloPoMo, this means that the challenge for December is:

to give something, to someone, every day of the month, and then blog about it. The goal is to act with kindness, obviously — I don’t want to be responsible for people giving each other black eyes. Your gifts can be as large as volunteering or donating to charity, or as small as a kind word to someone who needs it.

And when I saw that, I was all “like it wasn’t hard enough to just blog every freaking day, now you want me to do good freaking things too?”  No thanks!

But then Chris commented on my posting that she was going to do it and so I should join her and she was in the freaking hospital and managed to do all but two days in November and how could I not do December with her?4  Because in addition to being a glutton for punishment, I’m also a sucker for peer pressure.

Anyway, in her posting today, Chris said that she’s not going to go out of her way to do things that are kind and generous, but rather just be her using kind and generous self and give “mitzvah” updates in her postings if/when they happen.  So I’m following her lead5!

Which brings me to my small act of kindness for today: I gave Laurel, a colleague of mine who hates driving, a ride to a meeting today.  I hesitate to even call this an “act of kindness” ‘cuz it was really no skin off my back – I was already going to that meeting anyway, so it was nothing at all to pick her up along the way – plus, it meant I got to drive in the HOV lane with my 100% full Smart car.  But I mention it because it then allows me to tell this story about my GPS.

We were driving out to the meeting, which was in Pitts Meadows at a location that I’d not been to before, so I decided to set the GPS to guide us.  I’d explained to Laurel that the GPS was new and so I don’t fully trust it as it occasionally tells me to do odd things, so I still had a trusty hard copy of a map, just to be sure.  So we are driving along Hwy 1 in the HOV lane, still a few kilometers away from our exit when the GPS says, “In 400m – take a – sharp right.”  This is in the MIDDLE OF THE HIGHWAY.  We are in the HOV Lane.  As in THE FAR LEFT LANE!

That GPS is lucky that I generally don’t do what I’m told to.

  1. this may or may not be an exact quotation []
  2. ibid []
  3. apparently there are themes []
  4. the latter part of that sentence was all me, and not what Chris said in her comment.  She wasn’t trying to guilt trip me – that’s all my own doing! []
  5. i.e., I may be kind to you this month. Or I may just blog about nylons []

By

NaBloPoMoDone

30 days, 30 outstanding blog postings!  OK, 27 outstanding blog postings and 3 blog postings that I totally phoned in – but done nonetheless.

And in honour of this momentous occasion, I grant myself this lovely “Participant” badge.  Because nothing says “great job” like “eh, she showed up.”

By

O Christmas Tree!

After hockey today, I went on a hunt for a Christmas tree!  I haven’t had the opportunity to have a Christmas tree in four years – I was in Mexico for Christmas last year (2008), I was in Toronto for Christmas the year before (2007)1, and I was too damn poor to afford a tree the year before that (2006)2 – so I’m pretty excited to decorate a tree this year!  I have a tonne of ornaments because my parents always got my sister and me ornaments every year for Christmas when we were kids so that when we grew up we’d have lots to put on our trees.  Which, to me, makes decorating the tree that much better, because it’s like a trip down memory lane – “hey, I remember getting this ornament in 1987!”3.

Anyway, I needed a tree as I got rid of my old one during the Great Purge of ’064, and Kim had heard that Michael’s Craft Store was having a sale on a lot of their Christmas stuff, so we headed over there after hockey.  Unfortunately, everyone in the Lower Mainland must have heard about this sale before me, because there were pretty slim pickings left in the tree department.  The only options were a 7 ft tree – which is too tall for my basement apartment – or a 4 ft tree – which is way too short.  Honestly, what self respecting Christmas tree is shorter than me?? 5  So then it was off to London Drugs where I scored a nice little 6.5 ft tree that comes with lights already on it6 for half price!

And so that’s what tomorrow night’s project is – putting up the Christmas tree!

  1. and so I didn’t see the point of putting up a tree when I wasn’t going to be at home! []
  2. and the year before that I had separated from my ex-husband, so even though I had a Christmas tree, I don’t have any fond memories of that Christmas season []
  3. a lot of the ornaments have the date written on them []
  4. I took very few things from my old apartment when I moved into my current one – so either my ex took the old tree or it ended up in the dump []
  5. I’m short! []
  6. because putting lights on the tree is the most annoying part of decorating a Christmas tree []

By

I’ve Never Had A Budget

I have a confession to make. I’ve never, ever had a budget in my entire life.  I consider myself pretty good with money1 and I’ve never in my life been in consumer debt2 and I can count the number of times I haven’t paid off my credit card bill in full at the end of a month on one hand3.  I guess part of the reason I’ve never had a budget is because I spent so many years as a student on a very minimal amount of money, so I developed a knack for spending very, very little money at all times.  Basically my financial plan consists of:

  • automatic payments for my student loan & car loan
  • automatic contributions to my RRSP and 40th birthday savings account
  • pay my bills when they arrive
  • stick a chunk of money into a Tax-Free Savings Account every year4
  • buy everything on the cheap5

However, I think I’d really like to have a more of a, well, more of a planned plan.  I’d like to pay off my student loans a little faster and save a little more in my RRSP.  So I’ve decided that I really should crunch my numbers and see how much more I can put on my student loans each month and how much more I can invest in my RRSP.  My friend Kim has given me a spreadsheet she uses to plan and track her monthly budget and Sarah has given me a spreadsheet for tracking net worth6.  I also use Wesabe to track my spending, but haven’t yet had the time to sit down and look at the numbers7. So that’s my next little project8 – I’ll let you know how it goes.

  1. My mom is a banker and she and my dad taught my sister and me the importance of saving money and suchlike from the time we were very little. []
  2. unless you count my car, although I have the money to pay off that loan outright if I needed to – I just didn’t want to wipe out my *entire* savings to get the car []
  3. 1 – One Christmas when I was in undergrad, I was out of my first term student loan money and the paycheque from my job as a tutor bounced, but I didn’t want to worry my family and I knew I would get my next installment of student loans in January, so I put Christmas presents on my credit card and had to just pay the minimum amount for a month while I waited for that next student loan installment and for the tutoring company to get me my paycheque.  2 – Twice I’ve lost track of the date and forgot to pay my credit card bill by the due date []
  4. TFSAs are a new thing that started last year and so far I’m using it as place to hold my emergency savings. For the past two years, ING Direct has allowed you to put $5000 in an account in October that will become a TFSA on January 1 and they pay you double interest for Oct-Dec.  So I’ve done that the past two years – I think I make an extra $10 or something by doing it []
  5. I buy 90% of my clothes at thrift stores – you can get really nice stuff at thrift stores around here! []
  6. I heart spreadsheets []
  7. plus, it’s not quite up-to-date []
  8. as soon as I finishing marking papers for the class I’m teaching this term []

By

Secret Santa With A Twist

My office is doing Secret Santa, but it’s not just the typical buy a present for a randomly chosen coworker type of Secret Santa.  We have to buy three presents (~$5 each) for a randomly chosen coworker and somehow find a way to sneak those presents into the coworkers office without being seen on three separate occasions sometime between Dec 1 and 15.  I’m pretty excited to see what kind of presents everyone is going to get, but also already stressed out about the possibility of getting caught sneaking into someone else’s office!

Anyway, if you have any ideas of what would make a good $5 present, I’m all ears!

Image Credit: Posted by allerleirau on Flickr.

By

(no title)

So, since I know you are all dying to buy me all of the wonderful things from my Wish List at Thinkgeek.com, I’ve made it even easier by joining their Affiliate Program!  So if you feel the need to buy a tray that makes ice cubes in the shape of skull and crossbones or a coffee mug shaped like a laboratory beaker, just click on the lovely banner over there on the right side of the screen.  Unless you have an ad blocker, ‘cuz then you probably can’t see the lovely banner (and you are totally missing out, let me tell you!).  In that case, you can click on this link:  ThinkGeek :: Stuff for Smart Masses.

And then buy lots of stuff.  And then ThinkGeek will give me money.  And then I will be able to afford all the stuff I just bought from ThinkGeek!

By

NaBloPoMo!

I’ve been rather slack with the blog-every-day thing.  And so I’ve signed up for National Blog Posting Month – or NaBloPoMo for those in the know – to see if I’m still capable of pumping out 30 days of quality content. You know, quality like lists of hot hockey players, pictures of what I’m wearing on a random day, and being a guinea pig in scientific studies involving porn watching.  If I do run out of quality topics such as these, I can always follow this person‘s lead and turn it into NaBloShoeMo.

My friend, Resident Historian and Chief Political Correspondent, Sarah is doing NaBloPoMo too (in fact, it was her posting today that prompted me to join), so you should go check out her postings this month too!