Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Stars

they are best viewed away from the city. i don't live in a big city, but you still can't see very many here. when we go out to the cabin it just blows my mind how many stars there are. a couple years ago my dad woke me up at like 1 AM to see a really bright star he found- i'm pretty sure that was venus, from the blues clues planet song: "venus is the brightest planet". that was cool. the moon is always big and bright and pretty. i can't for the life of me find any constellations, but you can see the milky way out there, which is just too cool for words. like a band of clouds, but way way up high and never moving.
we had a campfire out there but it wasn't very bright, so you could just look up at the sky and see all the stars. so many! and a couple of satellites. i've seen so many shooting stars out there, and a comet once, which was awesome. if you lay on the lawn and look up long enough, you'll see them. we used to keep tallies when we had family friends with kids over, and my tally would get up to 8 or 9, every time. and the comet was huge, went across the whole sky with a bright trail.
and the last time i just looked up at them and wished i could fly. because a) flying would be so cool and 2) they were so pretty i wanted to get closer.

yer pal,
swegan :)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

PLAGARISM! jokes.

i told you i was going to blatantly copy things in the last entry. you have been warned.

1. What time did you get up this morning?
it was supposed to be 7. i had an alarm! but i slept in until almost 9.
2. How do you like your steak?
um, i don't know. not burnt? without all the gross grisly stuff that just looks disgusting?
3.What was the last film you saw at the cinema?
Captain America. which was actually pretty good. i'm starting to like superhero movies. hated the ending, though. it was so... not happy. i like happy endings and NOTHING ELSE.
4. What is your favourite TV show?
Glee. or 30 Rock. no, definitely 30 Rock, it's so funny.
5.If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
Canada.
6.What did you have for breakfast?
a bowl of froot loops, which is a rare treat in my house. yum :)
7. What is your favourite food?
pasta. definitely pasta. except the kind with meat in the middle, ew.
8. Foods you dislike?
brussels sprouts. those are DISGUSTING. also, weird potato chips. i'm such a mainstream person.
9. Favourite place to eat?
Coco Pazzo, because it has the best penne strascinati in the whole world. or at home, yum.
10. Favourite dressing?
Sundried tomato and oregano.
11. What kind of vehicle do you drive?
when my parents let me, their cars. preferrably the truck. it's so big and reliable and safe.
12. What are your favourite clothes?
Scarves, mostly. and sweaters. i love sweaters- not hoodies, but actual sweaters. especially when guys wear them.
13. Where would you visit if you had the chance?
Switzerland. i've always wanted to go there.
14.Cup half empy or half full?
I think to other people it must look like my cup is always more than half full, and when i feel like it's more half empty, then i feel like i'm a big stupid whiner and shouldn't be complaining because my life is perfect.
15. Where would you want to retire?
Someplace secluded, but with people around, so i can write. and in Canada, obvs.
16. Favourite time of day?
I absolutely love early early morning, but i just can't wake up that early. so when i'm up that early by accident, it's the best part of my day.
17. Where were you born?
Saskatoon, SK. I used to think they both meant the same thing. then i learned that Saskatoon was just a city.
18. What is your favourite sport to watch?
Hockey. but only when i actually know who's playing (eg. Canada vs. someone else) or during the olympics.
19. What is your favourite fragrance?
This one i have of the 2 i've ever owned from the body shop or bath and bod works or something, called Casis Rose.
20. What is your favourite face cream?
don't really use those sort of things... i'm always afraid they'll glob on and clog everything.
21. Favourite baby/kids products?
we'll see when we get there.
22. People watcher?
sometimes. mostly when there's nothing else to do. and also i've noticed if you stare at people for a long time they start to look different to you (though this is hard to achieve without looking creepy) like if you say the same word too much it starts to sound funny. potato. potato. potato. potato. potato. potato. potato. potato. potato. potato. potato. that's a really strange word.
23. Are you a morning or night person?
As i said before, i really like early morning, but i always stay up way too late, because when everyone else is asleep i can actually do stuff without being bothered. so a little of both, i guess.
24. Do you have any pets?
Mandy, the chocolate labretard. she is so cute!
25. Any new and exciting news you'd like to share?
I got an orange locker this year. bright, garish orange instead of just dark blue. Grrr.
26. What did you want to be when you were little?
An artist. until i realized i have no painting skills. and my parents scared me out of it.
27. What is your favourite memory?
I have no idea. i could say my first kiss, but... i have so many good memories. i am a lucky girl.
28. Are you a cat or a dog person?
Allergic to cats, with their claws of evil that dig into thighs. definitely a dog person.
29. Are you married?
I will be someday.
30. Always wear your seatbelt?
Duh. except when i forgot a couple times when i was little. oops. not anymore.
31. Been in a car accident?
No, except for the one time i was trying to switch lanes in the truck and some idiot in a teeny car zipped by me and i almost hit him because he was so small, and then he honked and scared me away. that made me cry.
32. Any pet peeves?
People who judge. thought that's my personal fear, too. people who are mean to me just because i'm not cool enough. bugs. crumbs in my sheets (how they get there, i'll never know). people who talk about themselves all the time but never realize it. (blogs excluded, of course. blogs are for writing about yourself. duh.)
33. Favourite pizza toppings?
I like perogy pizza, with cheese, potatoes, bacon bits, and ranch dressing. no tomato sauce, but mmm... or canadian pizza. pepperoni, bacon, cheese, and mushrooms. even better. when the pepperoni isn't freakin' ham.
34. Favourite flower?
red carnations.
35. Favourite ice cream?
Cookies n' cream. after that, anything with chocolate in it. especially brownies.
36. Favourite fast food restaurant?
I like A&W, but we ate them so much going back and forth to the cabin that i can't stand burgers anymore. but i like how they're not trying to be all health or anything. they're a burger restaurant, and they're proud of it, and they're not going to introduce some salads to make health critics happy. i love that. plus, their burgers are pretty good AND they don't put ice in their drinks! genius! genius, genius, genius! i hate it when i get to the watered-down bottom. or when i get ice in my orange juice. i mean, what the heck? orange juice? plus they have good fries.
37. How many times did you fail your driver's test?
The computer test for my learners i passed on the first try, hooray! i'm hoping the actual driver's test will go the same way.
38. From whom did you get your last email?
One of my friends from school, ginger asian. she and i are sort of the leaders of our writer's club, and we email each other about life and writing and stuff all the time.
39. Which store would you choose to max out your credit card?
If i had a credit card, chapters.
40.Do anything spontaneous lately?
No. I want to do things like that. sometimes i do, but not that often.
41. Like your job?
Don't need one, don't want one, too scared to get one!
42. Broccoli?
When cooked, yes, if you pitch it in some pasta or slather it with cheese. when raw, i'll eat it with dip. but not the stems, most of the time. there's just something about broccoli stems that grosses me out...
43. What was your favourite vacation?
The Europe trip. or maybe the australia trip.... i'm so spoiled. this is ridiculous. both.
44. Last person you went out to dinner with?
My family.
45. What are you listening to right now?
My sister playing Sims 3, and the sounds of highway traffic or possibly a train across the lake outside our window.
46. What is your favourite colour?
Turquoise, but i love bright colours, metallic colours, or pretty pale colours. anything but average.
47. How many tattoos do you have?
zip, zilch, zero.
48. Coffee drinker?
I can't stand coffee crisps. something tells me when i get to real coffee i'm not going to be so crazy about it either.

Hmm, let's think of a few more... just two, to even it out.

49. Do you picture things like numbers and months?
Yes. this probably makes me a partial synesthete, because when i asked nerd how he pictured numbers he had no idea what i was talking about. 1-20 go up, whether it's 1-20 or 101-120, and then from there they go right to left. sort of stopping at every level. 20-30, then a new level, then 30-40, then a new level...
also, my parents and freckles all picture things like this too, and it's apparently something that's hereditary. so maybe it just runs in my family?
50. If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?
World peace, of course! with war out of the way people could focus on important things, like the environment and helping poor countries get their economy going. as in LET THEM TRADE.
(sorry. i'm a social studies nerd.

I know those last questions weren't quite the same, but oh, pah, whatever.
Thanks to Victoria for the questions. I don't know whether you thought them up or found them all, but they were fun :P

yer pal,
swegan :)

Does this make me lazy?

I am going into full IB. this is not like advanced classes, as i have just discovered. it is a whole frickin' PROGRAM with challenges that scare the crap out of me. mostly because they involve me DOING stuff i've never done before, and that just freaks me right out.
since i missed the IB info night the april before i went into high school (i had tap that night! i'd already missed it last week for the other meeting, and the year end show was coming up, and stuff...) nerd filled me in on IB requirements, which i am now sweating. in addition to all the classes and the IB projects we have to do (except in social, i believe) there's a 4000 word essay on a "certain topic" (whatever that means), which doesn't worry me that much, because hello, i'm a writer. i write. so it's not that. it's more the 150 hours of community service and an oral speech in a different language that worry me. if spanish continues to be as slack as it is, i won't know how to write a speech in that language that won't sound completely idiotic. and community service? as in actually putting myself out somewhere and getting involved and doing things outside my safe little bubble of homework and piano? apparently there's clubs in school where you can get involved in that sort of stuff, but whenever i go to those meetings i always feel like i shouldn't be there because i don't have any ideas and when i do i don't want to share them because i worry everyone else will think it's stupid, or that they'll shoot it down (gently, of course) because there is a legitimate reason why it won't work. also, what is community service anyways? when i asked freckles she offered the suggestion "meals on wheels", but i don't think that's quite what they were getting at. also, we don't have meals on wheels where i live. is it picking up trash by the highway? working at an old folks home? that one might be easier, 'cause i have a family member in a home near where i live, though he's not old. i won't say why he's there, but maybe that could work...
argh. i don't know. if i ask my parents they're going to make me call people. i can't do that without crying and getting scared. i'm always afraid of calling the wrong number or catching somebody at a bad time.
i guess i better join one of those clubs, just incase math and science IB actually work out and then i have to complete the other requirements. now, i don't know, maybe i'll just do partial, in which case i hope i would not have to figure the rest of this out.

shit. i probably will have to, won't i?

if IB, regardless of full or partial, has those requirements, then i'm probably going to have to do them. and i don't think pig latin qualifies as a second language. if it did, thank god, i could totally do the speech part. as it is, i hope spanish 20 and 30 are more... well, i hope we actually learn stuff. this past year it was the same stuff we learned in the past three grades. which means i have excellent grades in spanish.

eek. i'm so scared. and it's not going to be a big deal for anyone but me. all my friends have the capability to call people and get jobs and shit. i'm the only overly sheltered one. i can barely order food for myself or pay for things, it makes me so nervous.

but wait. if i didn't do the requirements, what would that mean? i'm not completing the whole friggin' thing, sure. but i'm still doing SOME. shouldn't that count as partial?

argh, i don't know. what do you think? (if anybody still reads this, and i wouldn't blame you if you didn't...)

in an incredibly lame attempt at something, i will now copy ALL THE QUESTIONS that victoria answered on her blog and answer them about myself, because i love those sorts of things too. at school, the teachers are all "you're teenagers, so this thing we're giving you shouldn't be hard, because it asks you about yourself and clearly you know yourself." bla bla bla, whatever.

yer pal,
swegan :)

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

GUESS WHERE I WAS?

i went to AUSTRALIA.
i didn't take very many pictures because i guess all the picture taking in europe wore me out. we woke up at five, drove for two hours to the bigger airport (the city i live in isn't even 100,000 people. 2 hours north is a city of 1,000,000), and then got on a flight to LA. we sat in a lounge there for 8 hours (watching plane after plane after plane take off and land and taxi) while i readThe Importance Of Being Earnest for school, which was actually really funny. I think I also finished A Doll's House too, but i didn't really get it. i didn't even start on the shakespeare. if i have to analyze THAT by myself, i am going to fail english, and that would make me cry. a lot.
then we had a 12 hour flight to auckland, but in premium economy which is just like economy but more leg room. i think i slept for 7 hours, though that's not how i remembered it. did some theory papers, watched the free movies (I LOVE FREE PLANE MOVIES). bla bla boring. when we landed in auckland it was like 5 AM there, but 5 PM at home. it was also the next day. I missed out on having a july 12. then we waited in auckland for 2 hours, and took a three hour flight to sydney, where we arranged a whole bunch of stuff to do.
when we got to the hotel i remember we ate in the restaurant downstairs (after finding it... it was very confusing. it just looked like a lounge. but it was a restaurant) but by 5 PM we were all asleep. it was so hard to stay up. then we woke up at 5 AM the following morning and tried not to get up.
after a few days it got easier to wake up at decent times and before long we were waking up at around 10, dad would get some breakfast for us to eat in the room, we'd watch the news, and then go out and do stuff until 5 or 6. the first day we met some friends/family (i don't know, exactly) and they had a kid, and he was really really talkative, so that was fun. i discovered lemonade in australia is just sprite. i drank a lot of sprite in australia. i drank more carbonated beverages there than i did since i've been 8. we walked along the boardwalk and then probably went back to the hotel. it took us long enough to find the place that all of this constituted a whole afternoon. the next day i don't remember what we did. i think we visited some family, found out that nobody in australia bothers to have central heating or insulation or proper doors (at the hotel they were open all the time and it was 10 degrees out. australia actually does have a fairly legit winter, sometimes like our fall and sometimes like spring. anyway, we took pictures and then went to eat pies. not like dessert pies, but pies with meat and stuff in them. they were really, really, really good- and they had lots of pie places all over australia. you'd get a pie in a bag, smaller than a person's face, not very big (baby pies. but not dinky weeny pies). they like pies there. they also like the -ies ending on things, or at least something with that sound- biker gangs are bikeys. i'm guessing on the spelling. and then, as we all know, barbeques are barbies. toques are beanies. australia was aussie or ozzie or something (i'm not australian, hence i don't spell like them). tasmania was tassie. or possibly tazzie. everything sounds so cute. "Don't mess with me, I'm in a bikey!" hee hee :) oh, and an outhouse was a dunny.
we went to the zoo, which was fun, also to the aquarium in sydney (which sucked because in the underwater tube-things where you walk under the water and see sharks and stuff, they played this annoying music and it was like the same thing OVER AND OVER AND OVER, the kind of relaxing tune that can get stuck in your head all too easily. plus they were doing construction which was loud and annoying and smelled bad, and the kids were on school break so there were a bunch of them running around and being loud and yelly. i can't stand kids that yell and shriek and stuff like that. the fish were neat, though. (my favourite? Humpnose Unicornfish).
we went to some museums to see stuff, did a bunch of shopping, and had one chocolate something per day. if not for having a cookie or brownie or piece of chocolate cake every afternoon, maybe we would have all lost weight. we did lots of walking.
halfway through the trip we flew to melbourne, which was less touristy than sydney, and was a bit colder and rainier. But they had trams, and with trams they had warning signs, which were so awesome and clever. they featured a picture of a rhino on a skateboard (i kid you not), which said "Look. Listen. Be alert for trams". and some other signs said that, as well as "If a rhinocerous on a giant skateboard was headed your way, you'd get out of the way, right?
Well, guess what, a tram weighs about as much as 30 rhinos so it's not something you want to get hit by." I loved that. I mean, people are going to pay more attention to a sign with a rhinocerous on a skateboard than they are to a sign with a tram on it, right? it's genius.
we had supper at some nice places, did some shopping. went to some museums. there was a tutankhamun exhibit (spelling?) but it was poorly organized. there were too many people in there and after a while i got tired of reading about every single water jug they found, so i just read the big stuff. there was this annoying kid who stepped in front of me when i was reading something, which was very nice of him, and then later that same kid was like "i want to go" or something, one of his parents said something, he conceded (not happily, though) and then started to whistle. Which was, of course, annoying. He looked around until he saw me giving him the hairy eyeball right behind him and then stopped whistling. i was very happy about that.
our last night in melbourne we went for supper on the colonial tramcar restaurant, which was so cool. the food was actually good, and i'm not much of one to like fancy food. actually i tried kangaroo on that tramcar restaurant. maybe it was just the way it was cooked, but i didn't like it much. for the most part it just tasted like steak. mom had to stop eating hers because she said she just couldn't do it psychologically anymore. me, i couldn't tell the difference between that and steak, so it wasn't really an issue. it's not like it's readily available at home so i'm probably never going to eat it again. and kangaroos are cute. i'm not denying that. at one exhibit at the taronga zoo back in sydney, there'd been this little section where you could walk around and kangaroos and wallabies were just lying there, not behind any cages or anything. they just liked to sleep. very tame. we didn't get to pet them that time. and in that exhibit there was also an emu wandering around. at one point mom was like "oh, geez, he's right there" and i turned around and the emu was RIGHT BEHIND ME, i kid you not. scared the crap out of me. then it walked over to the zookeeper guy, who petted him/her and said "who's a good birdy?" it was quite amusing.
but. yeah. after that last night in melbourne we flew back to sydney for the last two days. i can't remember the first day back, but on the second day- our very last in australia- we got up early and caught a cab to the train station. we took a train to blacktown, got off, and got on a bus to featherdale wildlife world. THAT was neat. of course it was freezing out that morning, but still. we bought ice cream cones that had food for the kangaroos and wallabies in them, walked into the little enclosure, and got to feed them. they're like puppy dogs- they like to be fed. so we squatted down and fed them some stuff and petted them. they were snuggly warm and fuzzy. needless to say, freckles enjoyed herself quite a bit. and this feeding of the kangaroos and wallabies? came after we got to pet a koala. it was a good start to the day.
the only bad part was that of course since it's australia there was only cold water, so when i went to wash my hands i was pretty pissed. it was already like 5 degrees out. it felt like hypothermia. and then of course all they have to dry your hands with is something that blows air at them and makes them colder. so i walked out swearing, saying "what idiot only put cold water in the bathrooms?"
after featherdale we waited longer than necessary for the next bus back to the train station, then got some lunch and a train to katoomba. which was in the blue mountains. so it wasn't a whole lot warmer there, but by then it was later so it was warming up. we went to see the three sisters, and then on to scenic world. we took the skyway thing across the space between two cliffs, then took the railway down to the paths. that was a scary railway. steepest one in the world, too, at 52 degrees. you got in and sat slanted with chain mail over your head, and then the driver played indiana jones music and took us down. then you understood why the seats were tilted. there weren't even any seatbelts in there. you just held yourself up and hoped nothing bad happened. it was fun and terrifying at the same time.
needless to say, we did not take the railway back up.
we walked around on paths for awhile and it was so cool, to see all the trees and things you wouldn't see at home. we probably saw some more kiwi birds there, i can't remember, but i just know the kiwi birds were everywhere (and at the zoo there were peacocks just flying free. and walking around. it was neat) and they were- are- so epic, like round balls with a little head and a big, curved beak. and then there were the rainbow lorakeets at the zoo cafe, who would hop on tables outside and eat sugar and leftovers. there was this kid at another table who i guess considered himself some kind of rainbow lorakeet dietary expert, because he was shouting at them, "No, rainbow lorakeets! You're not supposed to eat sugar, it's bad for your tummy!" a pause as they didn't listen to him, then, "Naughty, naughty rainbow lorakeets!" keep in mind this kid also had a british accent. that was funny.
then they landed on our table and tried to eat some of our cake. dad guarded it with his fingers until one of them bit him. he was like "ow!" and then we had to ward them off with forks. as dad said, "You're lucky you're pretty birds." and they were, all red and green and blue and yellow. the only other birds i can remember were the one that sounded like a laser gun (beep beep beeeeep...... BEOW!) and those annoying cockatoos or whatever those loud ones were. think of a crow's call, then multiply the sound of it by three. those things were so loud and annoying, but again, pretty, all white with some neon yellow feathers at the top of their head that they would puff up.
we did see something at the opera house, too- a "romantic rhapsody", which was three pieces of classical music. quite pretty, though by the third i wasn't really listening, just enjoying how relaxing classical music is. the opera house was so cool- the second time we were in sydney our hotel had a view of it, circular quay and all. (we caught lots of ferries there).
ANYWAY. KATOOMBA. sorry i got so off track. apparently you were supposed to be able to see for 125 km. there was a giant mountain in the middle, but as far as mountains go, the blue ones were more like the grand canyon with trees (not that i've ever actually BEEN to the grand canyon). there was also an abandoned castle, which, from where we were, looked like a pile of rocks.
so. that was the trip. our flight back got canceled so we had to fly in regular economy instead of the economy on the other airline with more leg room. it was alright. i watched five movies, i remember that- can't remember them all now, though. no, wait, i can. soul surfer, because on the first flight we took i watched that until the screens glitched. then beastly, because i liked that one. gnomeo and juliet, because amy was watching it and then i decided to. (that movie was silly. but in a good sort of way). megamind, because i absolutely LOVE that movie SO MUCH and i don't even think i know why. and then the second diary of a wimpy kid one, which was a bad idea because it was so fake. middle school doesn't have happy endings. i wish they'd tell a real story, like mine. my middle school experience was one of if you're good at gym you are liked and popular and if you're not then you're a loser who no one likes. i had friends but i was such an attention whore that i'm pretty sure i ruined middle school for myself a little, too. middle school was toxic, where i found a few beams of light in some teachers and friends, but for some reason i was too stupid to actually fit in where i'd be happy. that didn't happen until high school.

i know this post is long enough but meh. i'll say one last thing, because i want to. it was in the changerooms, where three girls were changing near me but didn't know i was there. i'd been partners with one of them in gym, let's call her a. b was her friend, who equally thought i was a lame loser. c sat diagonally from me, and we'd talked some. she was really nice. so c was complaining about having to have one of the boys who talked about nothing but worshipping noodles as her partner, and b was like "well, a had to be partners with (insert my first and last name here)." like i was worse than the boys who worshipped noodles and took their pens apart in class to add them to their binders and, i don't know, pretend they were helicopters or something. and then c said "well, she's not actually that bad.." which i know, still means that i was kind of gross. but she either a) wasn't very fond of me, or 2) was just trying to agree with her friends while making a point. i couldn't believe b would actually be that mean and snippy, but that was so nice of c to say that. there were good people in middle school, and i didn't keep in touch with them when i should have. i'm shitty at keeping in touch, which is not good. and then there was the really tall guy who was in my class all three years. he was nothing but nice and friendly and the girls all thought he was gross just because he got sweaty in gym. i was like, really? grow up, because i remember being the only girl who would stand next to him sometimes. i also remember when i sat across from him in math, and i was rambling on about options or something, 'cause we'd just had a presentation for the high school i wasn't going to go to. and he listened to all of it. smiling. he was great.
i also remember being in the library with my group of new friends at lunch, and they were all talking and laughing. they'd all known each other for a while, but they welcomed me and my strange ways in anyhow.
so middle school wasn't ALL bad.
anyway. this is long enough.
terribly sorry,
yer pal,
swegan :)