Saturday, December 30, 2006

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year everyone!

I haven't been blogging all that much the last few days because, well, there's not much happening in my life right now. Despite the fact that I had the Christmas-New Year's week off, I spent a good chunk of my time in front of the computer, either doing homework or work-work. So spending a lot of time at home doing nothing interesting really amounts to a lot of nothing to talk about.

Anyways, New Year's Eve will be busy for me, we'll be hanging out at a friend's place. Everyone have an awesome time ringing in the New Year!

Casino Royale

Hubby and I finally saw Casino Royale last night. I have to say that I am now a Daniel Craig fan, and he certainly did a splendid job as the new Bond.

It certainly was edgier and darker. Craig certainly was believable as Bond. The whole angle of Bond falling in love was certainly refreshing, that, plus the un-Bond-like mistakes that he makes certainly makes him a little more human.

My beefs about the movie is mainly the script, and probably some of it had to do with the editing of the film.
  • The movie didn't need to be 2.5 hours long. They could have either woven the whole Bond-falls-in-love-and-gets-betrayed-by-girl bit a little more tightly in with the other storyline, or they should have cut out a good chunk of the poker game to save time. Or both. The very fact that both hubby and myself sat there thinking "When is this movie going to end?" is not a good sign.
  • It was just handy that Bond had a defibrillator in his car. And the other thing that he injected into his neck, whatever it was.
  • How many times does MI-6 not screen/check/whatever their employees? They had the same excuse for Rosamond Pike's character in Die Another Day. I know someone who applied for the RCMP, and they did a through background check of him, his family and his closest friends, and that's just the RCMP. I can imagine the real MI-6 screening people they hire a little more throughly than that, so that excuse in the movie was flimsy at best.
Click here for another view of the movie.

I did read that the next Bond movie is suppose to take up where Casino Royale left off. And there is rumour that there may be a "revenge" theme or sub-plot, that is, Bond is revenging the love of his life's death (even though he caused it, stupid man), so this may explain why the end was so bloody long and drawn out. We shall see...

Anyways, it was a good watch. 8 out of 10, I guess.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

FLIB-ur-tee-jib-it (n.) is One!!


Yes, on December 27th, 2005, I had posted my first post on here. And now it's been a year. To celebrate, I'm posting up a year-end meme that I've seen on a few blogs. I'm not a big fan of memes in general, but I though this was fitting. (I apparently overuse the word "So" a lot, gotta stop the bad English.)

- Go into your archives and find the first sentence of the first entry of each month of 2006.
- Copy and paste that sentence into your blog.

And if you're really curious about the post, I've also linked it to the actual posting.

Welcome 2006!

Bill Gates apparently has a computer dedicated to him at the IRS.

Since trying to take control of my diet, I've so far given up pop and anything with artificial sweetener.


Let's go fly a kite.

This morning on my way to work, I was listening to the normal chatter on the radio.

So today hubby and I did the Grouse Grind.

RC from Strange Culture had left a comment on one of my blog postings asking why I had it in for Keira Knightley.

So yesterday was my 4th wedding anniversary.

My mom finally got her lost piece of luggage back

I know that it's past Halloween, but I thought I'd put this up anyways, it's mildly amusing, but only computer geeks will get it.

So today we went to the Telus World of Science to see the Body Worlds exhibit.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Boxing Day Booty

After going to two malls and four furniture stores, we sadly got very little: 8 place mats for the new table, and 3 glass cutting boards, all from Benix. One of the cutting boards was for my mom. The total purchase after tax was less than $40, so we did score. My in-laws gave us gift cards for Christmas, so it wasn't like we weren't ready to spend, we were loaded with cash, so to speak.

I'm so disappointed that we didn't buy very much that I'm not even going to put an effort to posting a picture of what we bought. Those of you who are curious can come over and look. And for those of you who don't know me, if you beg hard enough, I may actually get off of my lazy ass and take a picture.

I'm finding Boxing Day/Week specials really aren't the same as they used to be. There were only a few stores that offered 50% or more discounts. I've pretty much given up on looking for clothing and shoes on Boxing Day, at least in Lotusland. Everyone who lives here is my size (or smaller), and I've already determined that the combination of A) finding something I like that's B) in my size and C) on sale is a pipe dream (this is no exaggeration!). I don't know why even bother with sales, let alone Boxing Day.

We're now on the hunt for a storage ottoman that is large enough to replace our coffee table. Large storage ottomans are a rare breed, but we will prevail!

Monday, December 25, 2006

Chinese Child Ball

I'll let you decide for yourselves if this is a good idea or not

Of course, this may train your children to become Olympian Zorb-ers

More about Zorbing here

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Have a happy and safe Christmas holiday, here in Lotusland, or wherever you call home.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

New table!!

So after looking for a very long time (at least a year) we finally bought a dining table that we both liked. If you had been to our house before, you would have seen the big glass table that we had. Dave had bought the thing long before we had even met. I am not a fan of glass tables, and felt the thing was too big for the room.

So last Saturday, when we were without cable and Internet, we decided to go furniture shopping. After four hours of looking, we found this table at Mobler. This was the closest thing that met all our criteria:
  • It had to be smaller than our old glass table (my criteria)
  • It couldn't be glass (again me)
  • It had to expand to fit more people (hubby's)
  • It had to be within budget (we bought the set on sale)
We were going to to go shopping on Boxing Day, but we decided to get the table now as we felt the prices wouldn't have gone down much more after Christmas, if at all. Hubby was getting a bit annoyed with not having a dining table (we had sold ours a few weeks ago), so he was really happy that we had finally gotten something.

I was still holding out for a round table, which would fit the space better, but finding a round table that fit all the criteria above, and that we liked is virtually impossible, so we settled for this table. Don't get me wrong, I love our table. It's the space that we have is awkward, so while this wasn't perfect, it was good enough.

Our only real complaint is that the table and chairs now blend in wonderfully with the flooring and our kitchen cabinets. It's amazing how much cappuccino-coloured furniture there is out there. While I don't dislike the colour, our kitchen area is pretty dark, and dark furniture doesn't work well in the area.

Now for Boxing Day shopping, we're going to look for table stuff to spruce up the table, it needs a shot of colour!

(Don't know why the pictures turned out so orange, sorry).

Picture of hidden leaf under the table. I love this feature because you don't have to mess around with storing the leaf. It's so easy to use the leaf too!

KOOKY: Well, I'm done...

Work that is. No more work for the rest of the year. The whole campus pretty much shuts down the days between Christmas and New Year's. While it's not written in our contract, it's written in the union's contracts that they get this time off. For our Association, we don't get paid overtime, so HR "generously" gives us this time off in lieu of the overtime we've done over the year.

What will I be doing over the next few days? Homework. I'm soooo behind it's not even funny. Programming, while sometimes fun, can have some really un-fun moments. I've spent the last 3-4 weeks banging my head against a brick wall trying to come up with a solution. I finally have, but it's not how I want it to really work, and it's not an elegant solution, but it is a solution.

What will I also be doing? Work-work. I running some pretty tight deadlines the first week of January, so I need to be ready for it.

Somewhere along the way, I'll also be doing Boxing Day shopping, probably right on that day. And having turkey dinner.

And that's my holiday in a nutshell. Eating, working, homework, and a bit of shopping. I think I need a vacation.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Ryan vs Dorkman

I was cleaning out my inbox when I stumbled across this sent by my friend T. For all the Star Wars geeks out there...

Thursday, December 21, 2006

I'm a sad, sad person.

I just downloaded and installed the Quicken 2007 Cash Manager, and I'm giddy as pie.

I was a little worried that I would have to input everything from scratch as I had Quicken99, and looking at the Intuit site, they didn't even mention it once anywhere. However, the lovely folks at Intuit managed to figure this out for me and converted everything with no problems.

Now I'm really looking forward using this new software, and planning out my budget for 2007. I really like how they laid out the reports.

Yes, I'm very sad. Someone make my life more interesting for me. Please.

(If you want to know how absolutely boring my life is, this is what I was reading all afternoon)

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Instruments of torture

I've been seeing a new chiropractor the last month, and I have to say that I'm feeling a lot better. My muscles feel less tight, and a definitely feel less tense.

My chiropractor is using a combination of techniques: Graston for my upper back and shoulders and Active Release for my neck (specifically, pin and stretch). Both are meant to reduce and heal soft tissue damage. Keep in mind that I've been in pain for about 2 years now, so anything to reduce the scar tissue that's been building up is a big relief.

The first time my chiropractor used Graston on me, he warned me that I would get "hickey-like" bruises (his words, not mine) because the blood vessels near the surface of the skin were breaking.

I actually took pictures of the bruises cause I thought they were neat, but I've decided since then not to post them as people may take them the wrong way and think that hubby was beating me up! (Anyone who knows my hubby knows that he would never lift a finger to hit me, so you can be rest assured on that point!) And I think my readers have viewed enough body parts for a little while.

Anyways, the pin and stretch is actually much more painful than the Graston. What he does is he pins down either a muscle or tendon (not sure which), and stretches my neck out. I suck it up an breathe through the pain. After all it's only for a short time, and if it had really, really hurt, I usually let him know in a hurry.

Hopefully this will help my upper back problems. Of course, the best thing for me to do is stop sitting in front of the computer for so long, but that can't be helped at this point. (Stoopid evil homework!)

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

How it should have ended.

Okay, this is a blatant post rip-off from IT P/J. He's also the one who sent me the new avatar that's on my profile. So sue me for being unoriginal.

Anyways, you can view them at this site, but it's better if you did a YouTube search, the videos will download much faster with YouTube.

Trend Setter?!?

This is for IT P/J. Tori Spelling is copying you! Read more here. Cheers!

Monday, December 18, 2006


I rarely talk about my Christian faith on this blog, but once in a while I am compelled to. I read this tonight, and I think this really sums up my daily struggle with faith.

I certainly don't think I'm anywhere near being a good, faithful Christian. I'm only thankful that I have friends around me who give me a good swift kick in the butt (many times without realizing it), and yes, sometimes God gives me a nudge on an odd occasion.

Pineapple Express: 1, Irene: 3

I apologize for not posting the past few days. The Pineapple Express had blown the power supply to my Internet and cable, so I was without either until yesterday afternoon.

We woke up at about 3 am early Friday morning because the winds were so loud. In our area, they had predicted that the winds would get up to 90 km/hr. In other areas, up to 115 km/hr. I don't know exactly how bad the winds were, but considering that the only thing that happened to us was non-working cable and Internet, we were pretty darn lucky.

Someone at work had emailed pictures of a tree that had fallen onto his roof, and even he was fortunate his damage wasn't too bad; there are so many people who had it much worse. First a water boil advisory, then a very heavy snowfall, then super high winds. what's next? It's not even winter yet, sheesh!

Anyways, it was interesting to be at a lost of things to do when TV and Internet is taken away from you. However, never one to miss a good opportunity, instead of just sitting around moping, I put my time to good use.
  1. After a 4 hour shopping spree, we finally found a dining set we both liked. Pictures forthcoming once we have it assembled.
  2. I did a through cleaning of my house, something I haven't done in a good long time, and was itching to do but I never had any time to do. Hubby couldn't really help as he didn't want to pop stitches, so I pretty much was the only one cleaning for about 6 hours straight.
  3. Because I wasn't sitting in front of my computer for more than an hour for the whole weekend, my upper back problems decreased slightly. I'm normally in pain all the time, but this non-computer time really helped.
But as much as it was nice to getting thing accomplished, I'm sooooo glad we have TV and Internet back.

Click on the pineapple picture to see it dance...

Damage at Stanley Park, to show how strong the winds were. Poor trees...

Thursday, December 14, 2006

What hubby did today...

Hubby went to a plastic surgeon today to remove a lump in his back. Don't worry, it's nothing serious, he could have left it alone and nothing would have happened to him. However, the lump was getting big so he decided to take it out. And since this is elective surgery, it comes out of our pockets. Eeks!

Anyways, not to have people upchuck their stomach contents, I decided to let you view them at your own peril. It's some sort of membranous sac filled with fluid. What type of fluid, I don't know. Any medical types want to take a stab at it? (No pun intended). Non-medical types can guess as well.

Click here to see it. The hand in the picture is the surgeon's and he wanted to show how big it is compared to his hand.

Click here for a close up.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006


So I was dragged into Blenz today. I normally go to Starbucks for hot chocolate, but one of my co-workers is anti-Starbucks, so off we went to Blenz.

I can't complain too much, as the said co-worker owed me a hot chocolate after I kicked everyone's butt to have our budget items handed into the boss on time (Said boss was breathing down our necks, and the guys in my office in typical guy fashion weren't moving fast enough for my tastes).

So according to the website, they use Bernard Callebaut chocolate chips as part of their recipe. Well, as much as I'm impress with that, it also unfortunately made my drink really sweet.

Ah well, at least it was free!

KOOKY: In the market

Right now we in the process of looking for a new software application. Let me say it's if nothing else, an eye opener of how things are done in the real world.

Tonight I spent 5 hours going through proposals. This was my second round going through them, and trust me, reading similar legalese several times in a row is not fun. I've been wanting to stick a hot poker in my eye since last Friday.

So after reading these proposals, I've come up with some pointers for those of you who write these things:
  • If you are going to make assumptions, please state them.
  • Have someone double check your write-up. After staring at something for a long time, things will creep in that you swore wasn't there a minute ago
  • Read the instructions and follow them exactly.
  • This is about the only time you can sell yourself to us, so to a really good job. Give me lots of detail to help me make my decision.
  • I'd rather you be upfront and honest than make up a bunch of BS, even if you know that it may not help your bid. Honesty is the best policy.
  • Please don't have your documentation contradict itself.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Tis the Season...

This weekend, I attended three funtastic Christmas parties.
  1. Saturday - my work party. It was okay, but I think last year was funner because we got to mingle. This past weekend, we all sat at tables, and half my group didn't show up. Booo on them! Then it was followed by...
  2. Hubby's work party. Or more correctly, the Christmas party that his boss puts on every year. So I went from hanging with Faculty of Medicine types to Health Authority types. Joy.
  3. Sunday - Cookie Exchange. I think this was the best part of my weekend. I got to forget my life for a few hours of tasty nibbles and silly talk of Chet the D&D Dungeon Master. Really, he does exist.
So today, I hauled my booty to work: 5 dozen cookies, and I force-fed them to all my team members. I think I ate one too many myself because I was feeling kinda gross by the end of the day. It was either that, or I was coming down with something. Not to chance it, I went to the Shoppers on Campus and bought some Cold-FX. I can't not go to work tomorrow, I have four meetings. Bah.

At least I feel better now. On to more partying...

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Yum, Coke!!

I ran across this the other day, which describes the effects that Coke has on your body. As much as I am a lover of pop (or soda or whatever you choose to call it), this is turning me off of it big time.

This is my favourite part:
In The First 10 minutes: 10 teaspoons of sugar hit your system. (100% of your recommended daily intake.) You don’t immediately vomit from the overwhelming sweetness because phosphoric acid cuts the flavor allowing you to keep it down.

I've been trying to wean myself off of pop for a while, with some success, but I don't think I can ever give it up entirely. Especially root beer, that's my favourite.

KOOKY: Down the Rabbit Hole

Thanks for IT P/J for taking these pictures for me. As I had mentioned in my previous post, the maintenance tunnels underneath VGH are very scary. Here's proof (sorry, the pics are little blurry, but you get the idea):


Maintenance level:
Hobbit size door. The guy in the picture is the new guy. He's been here only two weeks, and already we've subjected him to the tunnels. Hopefully it won't scare him off...

Thursday, December 07, 2006

KOOKY: A trip to the hospital

No, I didn't get into an accident, although I did witness a car accident this afternoon. Fortunately, no one was hurt.

About once a month I go to the Vancouver General Hospital (VGH) campus for various reasons. Today, I'd managed to stack three meeting there in the same day. I would say at least 1/3 of our users, if not more, are located here.

The drawing you see on the left is the newest building on the VGH campus. It's the Gordon and Leslie Diamond Health Care Centre. I personally think it's an ugly building, and actually didn't set foot in the building other than to park in the underground parking lot, which by the way, costed $15! All of which I will hopefully get reimbursed by the Faculty. Hopefully. (BTW, if you want your name on a building, donate $20 million dollars like the Diamond family did).

The VGH campus is huge, the buildings spanning several block. I was actually in three different buildings for my meetings today. Meeting #2 was in a building that's partially under construction. They've gutted one half, and once that is done, they're going to gut the other half. I think.

It's interesting being in old buildings. I was finally introduced to the older part of the tunnel system that spans underneath the entire VGH campus. It's really, really creepy down there. They apparently use the tunnels in part to move patients around (or dead bodies). I was going to take a picture, but I got distracted.

And I was also introduced to a stairway that is very, very scary to go up and down. The stairs are very shallow, to the point where no one's foot can be completely planted on one step. Plus there is a low overhang that you have to watch or you can bang your head on it. I'm 5'2", and I barely clear it without stooping under.

The best part about this stairway is that no one seems to be/wants to take responsibility for it, which is why it is it's present state and may not ever be renovated, repaired or torn out. This is such a typical scenario that I've witnessed over and over. I call it the "Same, Same But Different" syndrome. They don't want to be a part of your organization, but if something goes wrong with whatever IT stuff they're doing, it's still your fault and you need to fix it.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

KOOKY: It's just one of those days...

Yep, there's plenty of sarcasm that goes on around here, and sadly, it's not just restricted to working in a university environment. Today, my co-worker finally found the culprit that was causing all his woes. It was a D-Link router. Somebody had bought it to extend the network across the room. This router started causing a huge slow-down in the entire network.

Did I also tell you that his woes started on August 4th? Yes, this has been going on for four months. All because someone had decided to circumvent IT and go with his own solution.

My manager said that if this was the private sector, we would have given this group a very hefty bill for all the countless hours spent trying to troubleshoot the problem. It would have been enough to pay off my car loan, and my car loan ain't small.

The only consolation my co-worker's getting is that he can now let off a litany of swear words that he's been holding in the last four months and the knowledge that his nightmare problem is finally over. I'm certain he's gone for a good, stiff drink tonight.

So folks, if you think you're an IT guru, let the real IT guys do it for you. Even if you "know what you're doing", let the IT guys do it. You're most likely causing a mess in the infrastructure without realizing it. For the love of God, please don't create any more messes. Please.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Shaun of the Dead

London is taken over by zombies!

This movie was great! It was zany funny, and full of zombies. Lots of killing, then dead people coming back to life from the dead.

The picture shown here is my favourite part of the movie, where the characters pretend that they're zombies so they can walk across the street (filled with zombies of course) without letting the zombies know that there is still living people among them. Hilarious!

I've been wanting to see this movie for a long time and I finally got to. It was totally worth the wait.

The next film to come out from these guys is Hot Fuzz. This looks good too. Trailer:

Monday, December 04, 2006

KOOKY: Published!

Our group secretary wrote a small article for the Vancouver Sun's weekend edition. It's an interesting read.

It's too bad most of you won't be able to meet Doug. He may only be the secretary, but everyone knows not to piss him off. He rules the nest, and even my director defers to him. Doug is certainly quite the character.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

I saw dead people!

So today we went to the Telus World of Science to see the Body Worlds exhibit. It was really cool. What I saw was exactly what is shown in the picture (and the skater was actually at the exhibit too).

Yes, it's also a real live dead person in the picture. The process that they used is called plastination, which is a really cool way of preserving the bodies.

The really neat thing about this exhibit is that you get a sense as to how things are put together in your body and how compact everything is in your body. The body's a very complicated machine. I was trying to pick out all the part of my body that are currently in pain or that I've recently damaged, like my hip flexor, or the cuboid bone in my left foot.

Two things really impressed me about exhibit:
  1. They show specimens of health and unhealthy organs (eg someone with a healthy lung versus someone who had lung cancer). It really brings home how much damage one can do to one's body. I'll definitely be taking care of my body a bit more now.
  2. All the male "exhibits" (yes, they kept the penises and testes on) have the same sized penis. Don't know why I noticed that, but it certainly made me wonder...
Anyways, if you get the chance to go see it, go. It certainly is interesting, and it gave me a better appreciation of my body.