Thursday, April 19, 2007

Props to Heroes and Sheroes

My approach to life is to get things that don't need immediate attention, out of my way as soon as possible. I don't necessarily hang up my clothes when I get home. Why fumble with a hangar like a chump when there are chairs all over my apartment? There's only one of me, and two sofas, 4 kitchen chairs, and my best friend, the lawn chair in my bedroom. After a few days that chair is stacked so high with clothes it looks like the leaning tower of Piza.

I also apply this philosophy to coins. Except whereas I do hang up my clothes at some point, I have never wrapped coins in my life. EVER. And it never really occured to me that I have coins hidden all over my apartment. There was of course the pile of coins on my bureau that grows every time I come home when I empty my pockets. Jen made the mistake of offering to role them.

Well, once she started those I was finding cans full of coins all over the place... And of course there is my pride and joy, not one, but two, ghetto ziplock bags filled with pennies. Long story short, I had a little over a hundred and fifty dollars in pennies, dimes, nickles and quarters.

And it's props all around for alpha posse. Jen gets props for paying the pizza delivery guy 35$ in dimes. I don't think any man could have pulled that off. Of course the delivery did draw the line as he pleaded in a middle eastern accent, "Fine.. But ... no pennies."

Props to Rez and Jbo for bringing snacks, fancy sodas in glass bottles and pretty much everything electronic from Justin's living room. Guitar hero? Sick... But the real heroes are the people who play actual guitar. Jimmy Hendrix... John Maher? I think that's his name.

Props to Vrej for DVD player that plays Divx files. That is truly a kingly gift. And props to Dave for once again, depleting my supply of milk. If I've said it once, I've said it a million timess, it's not the Crizzouse, without the posse.

Pics available on facebook... And if you're not on facebook, get on!

Monday, April 02, 2007

Playing Randomly

I can't quite put my finger on what it is that annoys me most about Facebook... I must admit I'm not a fan of the total addictiveness of it. I'm a weak man. And anytime my mind wanders it seems to wander back to facebook. Email is becoming obsolete. Even if I do get an email, it's usually alerting me that I have a message on facebook. And when I go to check that message I get a new feed about all the mundane things that have been hapenning during someone's day. I admit I often stalk other people's conversations.

Person 1's wall: "Hey I didn't see you at the place today."
Person 2's wall: "I didn't go to the place I had things to do."
Person 1's wall: "Like what? Go on facebook?"
Person 2's wall: "Yeah, facebook is super addictive. Did you see what that slut, Person 4 said to person 5??"
Person 3'swall: "Woah.. I went to High School with Person 4."

Jbo has the most exhaustive list of interests, favourite music and activities that I have ever seen on one page. And as if the dozens and dozens of songs, and movies and TV shows he puts up there isn't enough, he even has the balls to put entries like, "ANYTHING BY Ronald Dahl... for example." "ANYTHING from the 80's!" His list isn't long enough, he has to include all the music from an entire tacky decade. We discussed this phenomenon at length and Jbo concluded that having many diverse interests make him a fascinating person. To which I replied, "Wow! You like the Simpsons??? that's an AMAZING SHOW!!! You're fascinating and complex."

But the biggest Facebook grab for attention is the relationship status. Why would someone announce to the world that they're in an "open relationship"? What is an open relationship? Does it mean you're sleeping around but you sleep with one person more than others? Isn't that just not a relationship? Or a "complicated relationship"? What's complicated about it aside from the fact that now everyone knows something's going wrong? And wondering... And waiting for the day when the news feed reveals (with that tell tale broken heart icon next to it), "So and so is no longer in a complicated relationship...They are single and interested in dating individuals of the same sex..." Then I have to waste my time checking to see how their relationship is going, seeing if there are any revealing messages being exchanged between partners involved in said "complicated relationships".

And what does it mean when people say on their profiles that they're looking for "Random Play"? What is Random Play? Those two words together mean nothing to me. Then there's looking for, "Whatever I can get." I wish someone would give me one example of what they can get from facebook besides a place to flush your precious time down the toilet.

I think Facebook is one of the most interesting social experiments of our time. It really reveals the disparity between who people are, and what people want others to see. The best example is Vrej's FAVOURITE QUOTE: "Have fun!"

First of all, that is not a quote. I mean, who said that first? Even as far as a motto goes it's kind of iffy. Second of all coming from Vrej it's downright offensive.

Me: "Vrej want to go to Cabane a sucre?"
Vrej: "It's far... I already went... I need to go to city hall to attend to some paper work."

Or the yearly New Year's Eve conversation. Every year since 1998 I have this conversation with Vrej.
Me: "Vrej, want to do whatever for New Year's Eve?"
Vrej: "I'm boycotting New Years. New Years is overhyped, overrated. I'm staying home."

Or clubbing?
Vrej: "I'm never going clubbing ever again."

Want to go to the restaurant Vrej?
Vrej: "I'm trying to eat out less. And whatever restaurant you suggested is too expenisve, or too far or too unhealthy..."

Few people don't enjoy Vrej's company, but "fun" is not the first word that comes to mind when you think of Vrej. On Facebook however, Vrej, much like Cindy Lauper, wants nothing less. I think I should start a facebook group, "People who think Vrej should change his favourite quote to, "Don't have fun!""

But yeah, facebook is awful, awful stuff... To all those of you in "complicated relationships". Good luck! To those of you looking for whatever you can get, I hope you get whatever. And please, if you play randomly, use a condom.

Those bureaucrats are some crazy cats

It should have been simple enough. I just needed to submit some documents for a Graduate Award I was applying for. In all fairness I was late but I was told it was okay.

So I called up the office for the people actually offering the award and naively asked the secretary if I could submit the required documents. She immediately replied, "Sure, but you'll have to make 10 copies of them."

Me: "10 copies??"
Secretary: "YES!!!"
Me: "Of everything?"
Secretary: "YES!"
Me: "Why?"
Secretary: "Because they'll all be asking for copies!!"
Me: "Really? All of them? All of who??"
Secretay: "YES!!!"

Anyway, I hung up the phone wondering if I had misunderstood something. Clearly I wasn't going to make 10 copies of the application and ask my references to make 10 copies of their reference letters. I just concluded that the secretary was completely insane and decided I would send my documents to the graduate awards office at Concordia.

I went to the wrong building and was redirected to right adress. When I arrived there I explained my situation to the receptionist who immediately donned the most dumbfounded look she could muster. "GUUUUUUUUUUHHHH???" She then pointed a trembling finger to a door behind me. There was a woman seated at my desk.

I asked her one question. She made a phone call to get the answer. I asked her another question, and she called the same person back. Finally she just took what I had and went into some dark hallway for a few minutes. While she was gone I noticed the receptionist on the phone looking very perplexed. Whoever she was talking to must have been asking her some really tough questions. "OH really? I don't know.. I don't know... That's strange.. I'll transfer you."

I can just imagine the person on the other end. "Hello... Is this the graduate awards office? What number have I dialed? What time is it? What's your name? Do you know anything?"

Receptionist: "Duuuuh.....??? Uuuurggghhh....?? I know nothing... Buuuuuhh??? I'm an idiot... Let me transfer you to someone who can help you. Gaaaahhh...." And while she warbles the frustrated noises of an over-taxed brain, her feeble mind tries to decipher the strange numbers on her phone and eventually she transfers the person to another random department where an answering machine is primed to take a message that will promptly be deleted the moment someone hears it.

Person: "I need to graduate! Help me!"
Receptionist 2 looks at her phone in disgust: "DELETED!"

The most surprising thing is that the receptionist answered the phone at all. I have never, EVER called a number at school and gotten an answer unless I was actually in a secretary's office already using their phone so that the cretin on the other end would know it was an internal number.

It would be very interesting to see what would happen if you eliminated 90% of the work force in a school. No one really seems to know anything. I mean, 3/4 people I had spoken to today were just there as foils, to lead me somewhere else. And in all of these cases, if you're persistent enough, you'll find someone who has access to the person with the brains. Some sinister mastermind who holds all the keys to solving all the problems. One day I hope to meet this person, so I can bypass all of the simple minded bureaucrats who waste hours and hours of my time anytime I need any help with anything.

The story basically ends with me going back to this lady with a completed application. The fun part is they need an official transcript. I'm told that it takes 3 business days to get. Something that I can print out on my computer right this instant in 5 seconds except it wouldn't be official. I love it.

*disclaimer* some secretary's are lovable, competent and super efficient. They know who they are.