Monday, April 30, 2007


Today is my first day at my summer job. My first "real" job, if you will. I'm a receptionist at a dental office.
There is one patient whose name I see quite often- her file is very conveniently placed in the filing cabinet so I see it a lot.
The reason I mention this is that every time I see her name, I get excited. You see, her last name is Burrows. That makes me think of Prison Break. I like Prison Break.
Like I said, exciting times at the dental office. Well, back to work.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Stampede is When?

I have a confession to make. I've lived in Calgary, Alberta all my life and have never owned my own cowboy hat.
Sometimes when I tell people this, there is no reaction. Thia is how you separate the lifetime Calgarians from the newbies. Most lifers, when there hear this shocking news, treat it as shocking news. Incredulous looks, scoffs, and wonderings: "Then what do you wear to the Stampede?"
Leading to my other confession. I've really never been. Okay, so there was the time I went with my cousins when I was about 12. But we went with my semi-militant uncle and it wasn't very enjoyable. Then there was the day I went with my nanny-child. But I was working that day. And I was with a 13-year-old. There was also the evening I went to see Emerson Drive in concert at Nashville North with a few friends. That was probably the closest I've ever gotten to the Stampede experience. But it was the sneak a peek on Thursday night and all we did was go to the concert.
Growing up, my family always took Stampede week to do all the Calgary touristy things that normally got crowded: the zoo, Calaway Park, hikes in Banff. We'd also try to hit as many breakfasts as we could (with 6 kids, you probably take every chance for free, no-stress food you can get).
Today I got my first cowboy hat. It's brown straw with a little band around the crown, with cowry shells. I really like it. I wore it all day while shopping with my mum and sister. Now I can't wait for Stampede! Even just to wear my hat to free breakfasts! (And maybe go to the real thing at last.)
Here's to lukewarm pancakes, sickly sweet syrup, and low-quality sausages! For free!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Gratuitous Post

I'm just wondering if I actually can put links in my posts on a Mac... let's try this . Ahah! Macs really are the pinnacle of computing perfection!

One Reason Macs Aren't So Hot

Although I love Macs dearly, I've realized that among their many advantages, they also have some limitations in comparison to a PC. Most are no their own fault, but the fault of the software makers that limit their use.
Case in point: When I use blogger on my Mac, it won't let me put links in my posts. I find that rather inconvenient. What if I want to reference another site on the Internet? Apparently, I cannot.
So today, since I am posting from a PC at school I will put in a gratuitous link. For kicks and giggles. And here it is. Also here, if you prefer a more structured approach.
PS. If you follow the links and get a good one, post it in a comment so I can see it too!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

The Treasure Chest

Today was a day like none other. Why, you may ask? Well, you shall see.
I attended a friendly gathering of friends this afternoon. A Sunday Dinner in all its glory. Friends, food, controversial topics, current events, all were present. But today there was something more...
A cache of hidden treasure. A store of goodies beyond our wildest imagination, just waiting for us to blindfold ourselves, be spun around in circles, handed a stick, and swing with all our might.
Yes, my friends, there was a pinata.
Shaped like a treasure chest, it invited all to partake in its bounty- after we had beat it to a broken mess, a cascade of plenty burst from its seams, spilling over the carpet and across the room. Following a mad scramble, much candy was enjoyed, including magic rocks that turned into chocolate in the mouth (in the same manner as M&Ms do, but the package said they were magic).
Much thanks to that emissary of fun, that bearer of Mexican party tricks:
The bringer of the pinata.

Friday, April 20, 2007

The Sweetest Exam

Around 12:25 this afternoon, I was sitting in my statistics exam, working away at an F-test to determine equal variance. I heard a rustling noise not far away and looked up to see my professor walking down the aisle between the desks in the gym where we were writing, with a bag in her hand. It looked full of something, and she was offering it all the students in my class. When she arrived at me, she held it out and whispered, "Take a handful".
It was full of candy.
The kid on my right, who was writing his Biology exam, looked at me with longing as I quietly opened a toffee. Suddenly his prof, who seemed very nice from all I saw there in the gym, paled in comparison.
I haven't filled out my prof's evaluation yet, but trust me, I'll be sure to now.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Helpful Hands (They Know Statistics!)

Today I had to learn the Gauss-Markov Theorem. Technically, I was supposed to have learned it a few weeks ago in class, but on that day, I was really excited to plan out my tentative class schedule for the fall semester because the Economics department had just posted thier classes. So I didn't pay attention.
I learned it today for my exam tomorrow. It has a snappy acronym and everything. B.L.U.E. (Best Linear Unbiased Estimator). Plus, I got to make up a hand game to remember the assumptions. There's 6 of them, so they match up with my fingers. Please forgive the lack of subscripts:
1. y=b0+b1x+e (I have thumbs, Baboons do not. Baboon has 2 Bs)
2. e=0 (I shot it with my index finger in the shape of a gun, so it's dead)
3. e and y are homoscedastic (homo sounds dirty. It goes with my middle finger)
4. cov(ei,ej)=0=cov(yi,yj) (cov means covariance- co means with, my ring finger is empty, zero ring)
5. x is a random variable and must have 2 values (my pinky finger is random?)
6. e is normally distributed (when I fold my hands together with my fingers interlocking, it makes a shape not unlike a normal distribution)
I have two little hands folded snugly and tight... they are tiny and weak, but they know what is right! (Courtesy of the Children's Songbook)

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Economics is Real... Part 1 of Many

I had a request the other day for a specific blog entry. Someone asked me how economics applies to real life.
Well, to all less educated in the ways of economics than myself and this individual:
In every way! Sheesh!
Thus follows today's discourse...
Actions should be undertaken if the marginal benefit is equal to or greater than the marginal cost.
Here's an example- I was doing a project for my Global Trading System class earlier this semester. There was one last question on the assignment that I knew was going to take me over an hour. This question was worth 5 marks out of 120. This assignment was worth 15% of my total grade. So, I could spend an extra hour (the marginal cost) to get an additional 0.625% in the class (the marginal benefit). Now, at ony other time, the hour wouldn't have been a big deal (ie. a large cost) but in this specific hour, my roommates were watching The Cutting Edge and I was missing it. An extra 0.625% is not worth an hour of The Cutting Edge. Maybe an hour of the rest of my life, but not a spectacle of ice skating set to 80's music.
I decided not to do it. Marginal cost exceeded marginal benefit.
Coming up next... Maximizing Utility Subject to a Budget Constraint! Or maybe the Phillips Curve!


The IRC holds an award night every year and gives out awards to people in several different catagories, some serious, some not so much. I was lucky enough to receive an award for "Most Eligible Bachelorette". Which got me thinking...
In this circumstance, what does Most Eligible mean? Is it really the person that everyone wants to ask out on a date, or is it the person who is most obviously single?
As my last real date was sometime in November and as yet, I haven't noticed any difference in the frequency with which I am asked out, I am leaning towards the latter.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Brown Paper Packages Tied Up With String

These are a few of my favourite things...
- My MacBook
- Reeses Peanut Butter Cups
- Indifference curves
- Tweed
- Old Hailey Mills movies
- Happy socks (in cheerful colours)
- Milton Friedman
- Panda bears
- The Year Without a Santa Claus (the Snow Miser song!)
- Getting my teeth cleaned
- Old spreading trees
- Coloured pens
- Asterix comics
- Matchbox 20
Plus, bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

My Favorite Blog

I'm not sure exactly what my friend does for work, but apparently not much of it is work. Today I received an email with a link to his new 'blog' chronicling the "saga of Eyebrow Eve", complete with links to various eyebrow sites. The most hilarious thing I've ever seen. You know who you are. Now get back to work.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Whatever happened to Eyebrow Eve? What a sad state of affairs. Just for the record, I loved her.
Don't ask.

Monday, April 9, 2007

I Have Become a Clone

There is something I've always wanted... a status symbol so inherently full of it's own virtue... something that every girl wants, no matter how she denies it... an item so iconic that it may be seen everywhere one goes... the new symbol of wealth, health, and prestige to anyone of a certain income bracket... a pair of lululemon pants.
I bought a pair. Ninety-four dollars and thirty-four cents. It may seem steep, but it is actually a small price to pay for the magical pants that flatter any butt, stretch to accommodate any contortion of the body, and come in a 36 inch inseam.
Just owning these pants has inspired me. I came home and signed up for an Ashtanga yoga class offered through the spring by Campus Recreation. Anyone who is free Thursday nights from 6:30-8 pm is welcome to join me.
Now, wherever I work out or attend a yoga class, those around me will see the tiny silver ankh on my lower back and know that I too am a connoisseur of sportswear. A sweat snob, if you will.

Food Is What Makes My Day

Tonight my parents are taking me out for Thai Food... my favorite food in the entire world. This got me thinking about my favorite foods and my favorite memories of food...
Thai Food:
- my Dad used to make Kayatsai, a kind of omelet, when we were kids, usually on Sundays
- the restaurant on the beach in Koh Lanta, Thailand, where we ate shark
- having a Thai food party on a Sunday last year and having twice as many people as expected show up- but there was still enough food!
- eating satay from street vendors on Bangkok for about 5 cents a stick
- skipping my grad banquet for dinner at Thai Sa-on with my Mum and Dad
- discovering Brie for the first time at a school potluck in the 9th grade
- going to a fromagerie in Paris, seeing flies landing on the cheese, and then going to the hygienic supermarket instead
- getting a round of blue stilton in my stocking last Christmas and making a grilled blue cheese sandwich
- finding that great restaurant on 17th with Aurora and ordering mussels
- my Dad's cedar-plank salmon (the dish that we accidentally served to my sister's boyfriend almost every time he visited us while they were dating)
- eating the trout that we caught in Prince George
Ice Cream:
- Aurora and I making homemade ice cream about 5 million times in high school
- sharing a Vermonster at the Ben & Jerry's store
- going to Lic's on the last day of school every year in elementary and Junior High
Mmmmm... now I'm really hungry.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

I love zuccini

I never realized how much the people you spend time with influence you. When you're growing up, it's hard to see because you live with the same people all the time and you've never known anything different.
When I first moved in with roommates in September, I began to pick up on their habits and mannerisms.
One roommate often uses the phrases, "Let's be honest here..." and "I'm not even going to lie", preceding statements. Another expresses approval by saying, "I fully support that." A friend used to use the term "weak sauce" to describe something that was a poor excuse or exceedingly lame. These figures of speech quickly made their way into my vocabulary.
I recently began spending a bit more time with another friend, who often makes statements beginning with "Just", ex: Just a great night! or Just a funny movie! I noticed the other night that I have also begun to make similar statements.
One time I saw a pumpkin that had been accidentally cross-pollinated with a zuccini. It was kind of green and didn't look like a standard pumpkin. Just being close enough to the zuccini for the bees to mix things up had changed the pumkin.
The people that I'm around enough to pick up on their speech have changed me in other ways. I've also picked up on their attitudes and philosophies, generally for the good.
So thanks to all my zuccinis. You've made this pumkin more interesting and given it a little more flavour.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

My Crazy Family

Just played a great game of Phase 10 with my parents and little brother and sister.
Serenading them alternately with Mika's "Grace Kelly" and Frank Sinatra's "New York, New York"
My Dad winning three hands in a row- he must be getting senile, because i maintain that only old people are that good at cards
My brother giving me the card I needed to win- Love my brother!
Getting my phase 7 in the first turn
I love card games!

Friday, April 6, 2007

Time For Tea

Today I made a fantastic purchase. I went to Value Village, that emporium of wonderful goods, and found something so onderful, I wish I could include a picture. Only I don't know how.
Picture a teapot. It's bright green, with a short little spout and a curvy handle. It's a retro kind of shape, very round. Six bucks!
Suddenly I have these desires to have a tea party. With crumpets and marmalade, scones and clotted cream, and little cakes.
The last time I had a tea party party was with my five-year old niece. She brought her doll, I dug my old one out of the basement, and we used a tiny tea set that we got from Thailand. We baked tiny cookies and a tiny cake and made little tea sandwiches. We drank lemon tea and discussed all sorts of important subjects like kindergarten. Best Sunday afternoon in a long time.

Thursday, April 5, 2007


I've noticed from a few factors that people are reading my blog when they should be otherwise engaged on productive activities. I fully support this, as I am currently at work. One the one hand, those of you who are reading at work are getting a good deal. Your employers are paying for this. On the other hand, those of you who read this while in class are getting shafted. Your tuition dollars are paying for this.
Not that I don't play on my computer in a boring class (last semester's micro theory was a wash). There are so many wonderful diversions available on the computer.
Does anyone know where I can start a fantasy baseball team?

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Crazy Eye Doctor

The optometrist stuck pieces of paper in my eyes and made me try to keep them open, with the paper in, for 30 seconds, each eye. I suppose that's what you get when your optometrist is nearing retirement.

So Many Stupid People

Professor X hates dumb people. He also hates people who don't listen or pay attention. He hates people who are late. He's made all of this perfectly clear.
So why, when he explains the assignment answers, do about 20 people all ask the same dumb question? A negative surplus is a deficit. A negative deficit is a surplus. You had the wrong answer. Just let it go.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

How Does One Become a Conspiracy Theorist?

That phrase was uttered by a very wise (and funny) friend of mine some years ago, during a discussion involving assorted conspiracy theories, including:
- The video of Neil Armstrong on the moon was actually filmed in Arizona
- No one has actually made it to Everest without oxygen
and my personal favorite,
- The band Prozac is actually just Fat Boy Slim, animated
Previous to aforementioned discussion, I had watched a documentary about the moon landing, and I mentioned one 'conspiracy theorist' who was on the show. After several possibilities (including a master's degree offered by and institute similar to the CMSS at the U of C) we concluded that there must be some sort of certificate at SAIT.
You see, I was sick on the weekend. Just before midnight on Saturday, I got what appeared to be a flu bug, with much vomiting, etc. Not too pleasant, but I got better soon. Upon returning to school yesterday, I heard of a few other people who were sick over the weekend. I figured that there must have been some sort of bug going around.
Today, I arrived at school, and learned from a friend that there were more than 20 individuals who attended a certain event, ate food, and were all sick on Saturday night at around 11:30. Individuals who attended but did not eat food remained in good health.
Food poisoning, you say? Well, there were a number of us who noticed members of our families/housholds with similar symptoms a day or so after we had them. Epidemic your current guess?
So now there are a few theories (perhaps conspiracy ones):
- The government is testing a new hypervirus
- The Calgary Institute was the victim of a terrorist attack using biological weapons
or the most likely,
- Dale finally got sick of us all.

Monday, April 2, 2007

Hiding Behind the Mask of Email

This afternoon I received an email that had been mass sent to my entire econ class. One of the students was dissatisfied with the instructor's performance and was trying to gain support for a mass dropout in protest. This email, which is automatically sent out to everyone in the class, including the instructor, through our online class forum, contained many rude and hurtful comments about the instructor. Seriously, the class isn't that hard. The teacher is great.
Since when is it okay to say things in a email that are inappropriate to say in person?

I Hate the IRS

I know what you're all thinking. She lives in Canada. Shouldn't it be Revenue Canada that she hates, not the IRS? Well, I recently got a job for a week in the summer as an EFY counsellor. I'm pretty excited- it should be a blast. However, since the Church Education System (my week-long employer) is an American company, they sent me 2 forms to fill out: the W4 and the I9.
I have become accustomed to filling out the Canadian forms. I know exactly what numbers to put where, how much tuition I can claim as a deductible, and all those wonderful inside tricks you learn from filling in the stupid things every time you get a new job.
I don't have a clue how to do the I9.
Am I a) A citizen or national of the United States, b) A Lawful Permanent Resident (Alien #) A, or c) An alien authorized to work until (insert date here)? As far as I know, none of the above.
Is a Social Security Number the same as a Social Insurance Number?
Are there any international accountants in the house?