Curling Loss

Let’s have a moment of silence please.  Manitoba eliminated Team Alberta (aka skip Kevin Martin) from the Tim Horton’s Brier this afternoon.  Sigh.

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Ipod “Truth”

I was reluctant to do this…  but here it goes.  My friends will love me despite my musical tastes, right?

1. Open up your library (iTunes, Winamp, Media Player, iPod, etc.)
2. Put it on shuffle
3. Press play
4. For every question below type the song that’s playing.

5. When you go to a new question, press the next button
6. No repeat artists…stuff happens (randomly!!)
7. No cheating or doctoring your list to make yourself look cooler than the person you took this from.

Opening Credits: A Good Horse – The Cardigans

Song for a Winter’s Night: Breath for Another – Esthero (Where did I get this tune?)
First Day of School: 21 Things I Want in a Lover – Alanis Morissette (New Jessmo cirriculum)

Falling in Love: Hands up in the Air – Craig David
Breaking up: Come Back to Bed – John Mayer (This is pretty funny considering an ‘ex’ once asked me to “come back to bed” after we broke up!)
Prom: Tell Me Something I Don’t Know – The Thrills
Life’s OK: In My Place – Coldplay

Mental Breakdown: Love is Everything – K.D. Lang
Driving: Waitin’ on the Wonderful – Aaron Lines
Flashback: Right for Me – Justin Timberlake

Getting Back Together: Wrong Again – Martina McBride
Wedding Scene: A Heart Like Hers – George Strait

Sex Scene: You Can’t Take the Wings Off Me – Reba McEntire (Uhmmm…)
Shelter: You Could Be So Cold – Wild Strawberries

Birth of Child: My Baby Loves Me – Artist Unknown (How appropriate!)
Final Battle: Is Anybody Home? – Our Lady Peace

Death Scene: A Home – Dixie Chicks (Actually a good fit despite the misleading title)
Funeral Scene: Sweet Old World – Emmylou Harris
End Credits: Sexuality – K.D. Lang

———————————————————————–

Open iTunes/iPod or Windows Media Player to answer the following.
Go to your library. Answer, no matter how embarrassing it is.

How many songs? 4130 (on the iPod)

Sort by Artist.

First Artist: I Do Cherish You – 98 Degrees (Pisses me off everything I hear it)

Last Artist: La Grange – ZZ Top (Again, where did I get this?  Who is he? Prolly some important songster I should know about – he sounds old)

Sort by Song Title.

First Song: ‘Til I Cry You Out of Me – Sozzi

Last Song: Zoo Station – U2

Sort by Time.

Shortest Song: 0:58 “Kung Pao” – Brad Paisley (not really a song, just annoying talk)

Longest Song: 15:57 “Eskimo” – Damien Rice

Sort by Album:

First Album: “1’s” – Mariah Carey’s Greatest Hits (Sigh, yes I do have this) 

Last Album: Your Man – Josh Turner

How many songs come up when you search for “sex”? Only 4 L (Goodie – “I Only Want Sex” – Jann Arden)

How many songs come up when you search for “death”? 11 (only Death Cab for Cutie stuff)

How many songs come up when you search for “love”? 337

Most Frequently Played Song: Gone – Aaron Pritchett (87 count) (Since May, 2006, I think.  My gang of gal pals know why this is the case!)

I don’t know how to do the rest…  me stupid!

The Fountain of Age

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I had a life-affirming moment today.  While reading in a coffee shop between curling games I looked up from my book to notice a middle-aged woman sitting beside me with a second hand copy of The Fountain of Age by Betty Friedan.  I am an age studies scholar today because of this book.  When looking for a Honour’s Thesis supervisor at the end of my third year of undergraduate study it was suggested I read this book.  I abided like a diligent, seeking to please student and spent coffee breaks and a large majority of my spare time that summer, reading, digesting, and making notes on all 638 pages.  By the 638th page I was convinced.  Ageism was real – and something needing to be conquered – and like Friedan, I was going to spread the word.   

Friedan writes of an “age mystique” that is rampant in our youth-oriented society denying and distorting the aging experience.  She argues we need to re-think how we do age – and instead conceive age as an adventure, a stage with possibility, rather than decline and despair.  There is a compelling alternative, one that celebrates the fountain of age, not the fountain of youth.  She chooses “age” as the core of her model of personhood, in effect de-centering youth in her version of an authentic self.   

So, when I saw this complete stranger with my bible – I did not hesitate for a second to ask why she was reading it.  She told me Friedan’s earlier book (The Feminine Mystique) had spoken to her in the 60’s – and now that she is older, she wanted to see if Friedan had anything interesting to say about aging.  Friedan was the first to inspire me to think outside of the aging box to envision age alternatives within my own life and the lives of others.  Friedan would find satisfaction her work is doing just that – not only in my life as a young, aging academic currently planning a program of work, but in the life of this particular middle-aged woman.  Moments like these remind me there is a reason I am a sociologist and offer hope that one day my work will also rest in the hands of someone seeking questions my work might speak to.

Curling Coin

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OMG, find me one of these and I’ll buy you lunch with a curling lesson to follow in which I’ll teach you how to curl.

The Departed

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I learned long ago that the correlation between an Oscar worthy movie and what I deem to be a ‘good’ quality movie is often low.  With that being said, I rented “The Departed” this weekend in hopes I’d be mentally stimulated, or at the very least, entertained.  Big mistake!  If anyone can tell me why the movie “The Departed” is worth watching – nevermind worth an Oscar – I’ll buy you a coffee. 

Curling Fever

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My weekend started shakily this am.  I turned on my televison to watch the first draw of the Tim Horton’s Brier (the Canadian Men’s Curling Championship)  and sadly discovered that my power was out.  %$&*!  But get this, my power was out only in my living room where my TV is located.  The anti-curling gods were out to get me.  Either that, or my “friends” have taken action to subsume my curling addiction.  Fortunately, the curling Gods came to my rescue and power was successfully restored during the 4th end of the Alberta vs. BC game broadcast.  Phew!  If I had to wait much longer I would have composed a very angry letter to Enmax demanding that if they couldn’t restore my power STAT they had better put me on a plane to Hamilton, Ontario to watch the bonspiel live.

Posted in Curling. 1 Comment »

Annoyed

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I learned a valuable lesson this week.  Sometimes people aren’t going to agree with my opinion.  And I have to learn to be comfortable with that. 

This may seem like an odd statement to write as a sociologist.  There is always the chance someone might not agree with what I have to say when I write a blog entry, submit a paper to a professor, or deliver a conference presentation.  Interestingly, the potential for disagreement within this forum does not make me uneasy.  Rather, it is part of my habitus or academic disposition.  Disagreement is part of the academic game I play.  Difference in theoretical and methodological orientations within the discipline of sociology exists, but fortunately my academic disposition anticipates what a particular line of thought might have to say in response to my argument.  I expect conflict because theoretical positions are diametrically opposed; conflict is part of the game.  And despite disagreement we at least share some common ground; we are all sociologists and working with some form of a “sociological imagination.”

I am the Graduate Rep for the Department of Sociology and attend monthly meetings with the Graduate Student’s Association (GSA) at the University of Calgary.   As much as I may be able to tolerate diversity within the sociological game, situated outside of this setting – and inserted in a small room with graduate students from a wide assortment of academic departments with different points of view – is a different ball of wax.  I’m transformed into an intolerant, raging, narrow-minded machine.  My blood pressure rockets and the muscles in my face tire from attempts to hide disgruntlement.  And, most scarily, I yearn for a water-gun to silence the vocal, narrow-minded, naysayers within the group.

This week I was asked to raise a motion at the Graduate Representative Council (GRC) meeting for the GSA.  The motion concerned increasing the honorarium that current and future Executive members receive monthly for services they deliver.  Their monthly bonus (and I refrain from the word “salary” because technically an Executive position is not a job in the traditional sense) is a great deal less than what a Teaching Assistant makes per month but their workload exceeds that of a TA.  The president receives approximately $800 per month and other executive members receive approximately $500 per month, while a monthly salary for working as a TA is $1600. 

In my opinion, the current compensation structure was incommensurate with the amount of time the GSA Executive devotes to the obligations outlined in their portfolios.  No more need be said.  So, together with the help of others, I presented a proposal in the form of a motion to the GRC, a voting body composed of Graduate Reps.  Not surprisingly (in the sense I knew from previous experience with these meetings that my ethic was not the same as my fellow graduate students), the issue was deemed contentious.  For 40 minutes I responded, along with my co-presenter, patiently and carefully to the questions and concerns raised.  We articulated to the best of our ability the case in attempt to win their vote.  But there is only so much discussion of an issue you can do.  At one point – we both threw up our hands in frustration – and said in response to one particularly vocal rep, “Fair enough.”  I mean – what else could we say, we just weren’t going to agree.  And there was no point in continuing to try. 

Yes, I am closed-minded about being open-minded.  Difference of opinion, BAH!

Thankfully, our motion passed: 22 in favour; 2 against; 1 abstention.  Phew!  Justice has been served.