Slow, yes, but poorly executed

So, the laptop is in the shop. The video cable is fried. Future Shop (or, as I hope Quebecers call it, Futu Shop) is the only distributor of parts for emachines in the area.
We’re playing a waiting game now.
In the meantime, I’m furtively sneaking into colleagues’ offices and stealing time on their machines, collecting email and updating my student pages as quickly as possible.
So, apologies for the long, dramatic pauses.
I shall return!


MT Blacklist rocks, yes – but one of the blacklisted urls is – which means that anyone whose address is [name][at],, etc., has had their comments inadvertantly eradicated. Sorry Bill, Caroline, and the rest of you!
I have removed the url from my list, and would suggest others do the same. Also, if you happen to be perusing past comments and wonder what some of us are babbling about, chances are there’s a comment that’s been dumped. We’re not known for our non-sequiturs round here, I can tell you.

Avril is the cruellest, man

So, Canadian anti-Britney Avril Lavigne has chosen this month’s Maxim as the launch vehicle for her new role as a sex kitten. Along with several flirty pix of Miss Manners in various stages of undress, there’s an interview which features the following:
Lavigne begins by saying that she has been unfairly depicted by journalists as having a short fuse.
“The media have portrayed me as an angry girl who’s pissed off all the time,” she says.
In answer to a question about when the last time was she “had to smack a bitch down,” Lavigne responds this way:
“In a bar a few months ago. Some chick came up to me and got in my face and said something, so I kicked her in the box and shoved her. I don’t go looking for fights, but if someone comes up to me and pushes me, I’m not going to take it.”

Ok, as long as she doesn’t have a short fuse or anything.

News flash: Toronto still centre of the universe

The NHL – that’s the National Hockey League – is involved in some bruhaha over the usual bags of money, and the players are currently locked out. As a result, the hockey season will definitely not start as scheduled, and may not happen at all.
One fan in Toronto had this to say:
“It’s like there’s a cloud over Toronto. It’s just one disaster after another.”

Minor technical difficulties

I started writing this post yesterday afternoon.
My fantabulous laptop is pooping out on me. Since it’s a refurbished machine, it’s no longer under warranty. E-machines tech support were able to tell me immediately that the problem is the CPU fan – I suspect this is not an unprecedented case.
The symptoms: the computer gets very hot very quickly, then shuts itself off as a safety precaution. Which would be acceptable were there any warning involved, such as “the system has detected a problem and needs to shut down. Please close all applications.”
This message, however, does not appear. The machine simply stops altogether. On a good day, presumably when there’s good air circulation and low humidity or something, I can work for a couple of hours before this becomes a problem. Unfortunately, the AC here at work is automatically shut off at the beginning of September, so even with my office window open all the time, the air gets warm in here.
I’ve spoken to a recommended techie out in Sherbrooke, who has since reported that he thinks he can get the required part(s), and that he thinks he can take a look at the machine and give me an estimate next week.
Suffice it to say that posting will be sporadic, given that I have to make hay while the sun shines (in other words, make essay questions and grammar quizzes while the computer is up).

Shiny happy pictures

meerkat sentry
We took the kids to Granby Zoo last Sunday, thanks to my Mum, who provided passes for us. Traffic was a prime pain in the ass, so it took us ages to get there, but once we were there, we picnicked on the lawn, basked in the sun, and had a great time. We each chose one “must-see” animal beforehand, so no one would be disappointed – we knew we couldn’t possibly see everything. Colin chose lions, Dr. T. chose some obsure Scrabble-word animal, Robert chose penguins, and I chose tigers.
The lions and tigers were not a problem; however, the penguins didn’t actually exist, but Robert was a happy camper nonetheless. As for the weird Scrabble animal, we didn’t see one, but we did see an agouti. Woohoo.
Anyway, on a crappy, rainy, Frances-inundated day like today, please enjoy these sunny, happy day pictures.

Oh, all right. Sheesh

Via Clare:
Last Cigarette: 205 days ago! Yay, me!
Last Alcoholic Drink: last night (Moosehead).
Last Car Ride: Yesterday afternoon, to Canadian Tire and back.
Last Kiss: last night
Last Good Cry: honestly, don’t remember. There have been many movie-induced tears, however.
Last Library Book checked out: Jack Maggs, by Peter Carey. I didn’t finish it.
Last movie Seen in Theatres: Spiderman II
Last Book Read: Angels and Demons, by Dan Brown (author of The Davinci Code. Currently reading The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency.
Last Movie Rented: 13 Going on 30.
Last Cuss Word Uttered: Fucking. But I blame our misadventures with our dishwasher.
Last Beverage Drank: Breakfast shake – OJ, slimfast, whey protein and peaches.
Last Food Consumed: ditto
Last Crush: Football players practice outside my office window. I’m fickle.
Last Phone Call: The Gazette, to cancel my subscription. They must have known, because they didn’t answer.
Last TV Show Watched: Scrubs
Last Time Showered: in just a few minutes, I swear.
Last Shoes Worn: Clarks wedgie sandals.
Last CD Played: “Me & Mr. Johnson,” Eric Clapton
Last Item Bought: Dish rack and drainer – hence Canadian Tire, and the conclusion to the dishwasher story.
Last Download: Flash, in order to play live video of new dishwashers. It’s like appliance pr0n.
Last Annoyance: Sour milk.
Last Disappointment: No coffee, given the sour milk
Last Soda Drank: Gingerale.
Last Thing Written: Comments on student papers.
Last Sleep: Last night.
Last Weird Encounter: My friend’s dog, who made very interesting sounds and puffed fur at us for no apparent reason. We tried food, belly scratches, water, out, in… it turned out what he really wanted was our hot chocolate.
Last Ice Cream Eaten: Don’t remember – yay, me, again!
Last Time Amused: Just now, because Colin is taking the verb quiz I gave my students on Friday – and he’s doing better than they did.
Last Time Hugged: last night, by a sleepy Robert.
Last Time Scolded: Yesterday – apparently I overreacted to the fact that our $%#$&^# dishwasher is $%#$&^# broken.
Last Time Resentful: Aside from the usual resentment at skinny people and bad drivers, I can’t really remember.
Last Chair Sat In: couch.
Last Underwear Worn: White thong.
Last Bra Worn: Peach-coloured Body bra from Victoria’s Secret. Really.
Last Shirt Worn: blue and white t-shirt.
Last Webpage Visited:

You know, that guy from Scrubs

In case you were wondering “whatever happened to Bea Arthur” (of course you were. Just be a (wo)man and admit it.), it turns out she’s dating Zach Braff.
You know, the guy from Scrubs.
His Garden State marketing people have convinced him to get blogging, and he’s funny (that’s haha, not strange). He claims to read all comments, but every post generates hundreds – some of the commenters are just as funny and twisted as Braff – but it’s like shopping at Winners. You have to be prepared to wade through a lot of mundane stuff to find the perfect pair of pants. There are usually several comments rejoicing the fact that the commenter is first! second! top ten! – on the other hand, the prevailing sentiment is one of happiness, appreciation and humour, so it’s a good thing.