Dream of the Dolphin
a.k.a.
Confessions of a Post-Graduate Pity Whore

Free Story!

Wednesday, July 31, 2002
 

Sweet victory!

Yes, Sarah Danger has located an apartment!

Now all we have to do is keep it from the clutches of those damn Nazis.

You know that scene in the Wizard of Oz, where Dorothy opens the door and suddenly everything is in colour? That was opening the door to this apartment. It was everything we were looking for. Nice clean apartment at the front of the building (so it has extra windows), big living room, small but liveable kitchen, bathroom, two big bedrooms. Pets are allowed. It's in Rosedale, which for the non-Torontonians is full of lovely ivy-covered mansions and crammed full of trees -- nice, safe neighbourhood. 5 minute bus ride from Rosedale subway station. $1150 inclusive, which is at the upper range of our price range, but still in it. It's perfect.

So we frantically dashed off our applications and are sitting here crossing our fingers.

Let the waiting game begin.


( 10:45 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Tuesday, July 30, 2002
 

The smell of fear...

Emily and I have added a new critera to our list of apartmental necessities.

Apartment must not smell.

No, I'm not anthropomorphizing. We saw two apartments today. The first was enormous, two floors, and we would have taken it in a heartbeat had it not been for the fact that the basement level (where the living room is) smelled like pee.

So off to the second apartment, which was even worse. Not only did the kitchen lack a floor and the guy have a rather unnatural obsession with how many times a week Emily's boyfriend would be staying over, but the entire apartment smelled like corn.

We have a viewing in Rosedale tomorrow. Emily says it's a bit of a hike, but she wouldn't mind if it's a nice place and it lacks a strange smell and/or people who seem like they'll kill you if you don't keep an eye on them.


( 10:55 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Monday, July 29, 2002
 

The Verdict

Back. I have returned to the city. I am old and grey and full of sleep. I know little of what I say.

Yeah, I'm tired.

Anyway, I saw the doctor this morning to talk about my tendency to acquire debilitating illnesses. And the verdict (drumroll please):

I'm unhappy.

Yup, that's all there is to it. I'm not talking depressed -- I'm not gonna be going on Zoloft or anything like that -- but I'm unhappy. More specifically, when I asked her what was wrong with me, she looked at me and said: "You're frustrated, you feel your life is on hold. You're not eating, sleeping, or exercising properly. You have problems with your job, you have problems with your work." Then she raised a brow. "Do any or all of these apply to you?"

I sheepishly admitted yes, and she told me that was enough to do it. She told me that when you spend all your time enduring your life rather than living it, your immune system plummets and you get sick. She says she seriously doubts it's an autoimmune disorder or anything chronically physiological, because if it were, I'd be sick more often with worse. And she has a point -- as sick as I get sometimes, I've never, ever been admitted to the hospital. Though it might have been a possibility this time, seeing as she told me that the doctor who prescribed the biaxin underdosed me (I should be getting 500 mg, but I'm getting 250).

She says ideally I should be writing for a living -- it's what I'm happy doing, and would enable me with the freedom to do things like sleep properly, exercise, and plan my meals. But until that happens, I just have to make an effort to listen to what my body is telling me, and try to live life, not endure it. And get a job I like.

Something that I may have already blown, as I came home to find an e-mail from the editor to whom I submitted my resume, informing me that it was password-protected. D'oh!

Anyway. Off to bed.

And an addendum...

I know I'm supposed to be taking joy in the simple things. But it's hard to find joy in stuff when you're awake long past your bedtime, sucking down water, curled up in a ball, trying to fight off the nausea from the biaxin.

Jenny, I love you. ::hug::


( 11:56 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Friday, July 26, 2002
 

Aw, crap

Mum managed to make an appointment for me with Dr. T., to talk about why I keep getting sick so much.

It's on Monday.

Which, of course, means I have to take the bus to Newmarket on Sunday so I can be at the doctor's Monday morning, and then drag myself onto another bus to go back to Toronto. I don't think I'll be going to the ROM that day.

Here's the thing -- I hate the bus. I loathe and abhor the bus. I would rather stick hot pins in my eyes than take the bus. Bus trips between Newmarket and Toronto wipe me out so bad that the rest of the day is a write off -- this is when I'm healthy. You can imagine the effect they have on me when I'm sick. I don't even want to think about adding gravol to the chemical cocktail already swimming around in me, so it's going to be even worse.

But it's go now or wait till the end of August, so I really don't have much of a choice.

Sometimes I just want to hide my head under the covers and not come out again.


( 12:21 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Thursday, July 25, 2002
 

Dear God, Make it Stop!

There is yet another bane of my existence, which has been somewhat swamped by the nearsigtedness and the pneumonia in the blogging.

The skin on my feet has decided to react to the adhesive on the band-aids. Violently.

I can't remove the bandaids because the treatment has to continue or the virus takes hold and starts proliferating. But my hapless skin has had enough of it, and the adhesive is now setting the skin on fire with itching. It's driving me insane. It's itching to the point at which I'm willing to take a file to it and scrape until the skin comes off (you think I jest, but I have actually gone at it with an emery board). It's impossible to ignore, because with every step it's scratched just a little and the itching begins anew. I've tried cutting the bandaids shorter, I've tried repositioning them, but all that does is make new spots itch.

I should go see the doctor, but I have this fear of going in too much. I start getting the "oh, it's her again" look. So I appeal to my wonderful readers -- does anybody know a way to MAKE THE ITCHING STOP??????


( 11:12 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Things you don't want to see on your prescription info sheet:

CHECK WITH YOUR DOCTOR AS SOON AS POSSIBLE if you experience emotional or mood changes, confusion, hallucinations, depression, nightmares, or trouble sleeping.

And the only thing I can think is, "what, you mean if I experience more?"


( 9:30 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Thank you!!!

Okay, first I have to say a great big thank you to Jenny (for the tapes and CDs), Josie (for updating, huzzah!), Charity (for the wonderful snippets), Sheila (for tolerating my use of her as my personal medical reference dictionary) Dan, Jojo, and Kyrre (for the nice e-mail), Tami (for the chat and the sparklies), and Alkaris, the Sianduran Emperor and Holy Protector of Adarma..... and Tarren (for the concern). I'm sorry I'm not responding to you all individually -- I'm still not that great for extended periods at the keyboard -- but I really appreciate the thoughts (and entertainment!). You guys rock.

This is the mummy that lived in the house that Ed built

So I went to see the Gorey house today. It was pretty wild, actually. The guy who owns the house used to do a lot of travelling and kept bringing back things (taxidermy mounts, tribal artifacts, etc.), and ended up with his own musem, which he then started to rent out to movie prop companies. I walked in the door (going past a water buffalo to get there), and had a seat in a very comfortable chair next to a deer and a large golden eagle. Across from me were the TV and a white tiger preparing to disembowl a downed brown bear. And it turns out that before Bill Jamieson sold the collection, the mummy of Ramses I used to live in the basement.

I'm not going to be living there, though. There's no kitchen, and I'd have to have phone and cable lines installed in my room. It's a really cool place, but I don't think I could live there.

But damn, did I get a hell of a novel out of it.

This was me in grade 9, baby!

Actually, it was probably more like grade 10 or 11...

Jenny posted a picture she found of a bunch of the old crew in her kitchen. She posted it for blackmail purposes actually, but though I can see how everybody else has changed (though I haven't seen the Deyoe twins in a while), I don't think I've really changed that much, except that my hair is shorter and I've developed a sense of personal style.

It's funny, of all the people in the picture, the only one I still talk to is Jenny. I know high school sucked for everyone, but it was a particularly painful time for me because I thought I had this great group of friends until I was told that none of them actually liked me. Except Jen. Jenny has been pretty much a constant in my life since grade 10, and if nothing else, it's taught me that when you find a true friend, you find them for life.

And I'm starting to get really rambly, so it's time to lie down now.




( 8:12 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Wednesday, July 24, 2002
 

Emily bought me apple chips!!!

Yes, sadly, this is the most exciting thing to happen this week.

Pneumonia sucks.

It's also deceptive. I actually don't feel all that bad in between coughing fits, until I try to get up. And then I discover the other thing about pneumonia. It makes you weak. Shaky-legged, helpless-kitten weak. It's bizarre, because although I don't seem tired, I'll get up to get something from the kitchen and have to take a nap after.

My fever is up, which can't be helping, and my food intake is waaaay down, which probably isn't helping either. Something is turning on the nausea, much like the mono, and the only food in the house that doesn't make my stomach churn is pita and hummus. So that's what I've been eating for the last few days (and for those who were here for the mono rants, no I can't resort to the yellow rice buckets either -- the microwave is still broken). It gets very boring. So when Emily brought apple chips for me (thank you SO much Sheila, you don't know how many times those have saved me), it was cause for much rejoicing.

Actually, the boredom is the worst of it. It's boring being sick. I'm about to break out the StarDoc series again (which have become my default sick books). I'm reading Jennifer Roberson's Chronicles of the Cheysuli, but she has this nasty habit of getting her couples together and then killing them, which is pissing me off. My craving for fuzzy bits goes way up when I'm sick, but having the fuzzy bits followed by earth-shattering devestation that leaves me in a weeping puddle isn't good for the recovery. So I resort to StarDoc, which can be intense, but at least Sheila doesn't mess up the fuzzy bits (yet. If anything permanent happens to Duncan, I will be sorely pissed).

So most of the time I'm confined to bed, but I find myself ranging back ond forth between the bed and the computer for most of the day, trying to alleviate the boredom. This is mostly done by blog-surfing, but that can only go so far, because people don't often update as much as I range. So Emily constantly comes upstairs to find me at my computer whining, "come ON, why aren't you people updating??? Come on! Entertain meee! Somebody e-mail me or something!" (the reason why I don't just drop into chat is that typing is actually difficult, between the fatigue and the shakes, and I'm prone to stopping in the middle of whatever I'm typing for a nap)

And just to further piss me off, my left contact lens ripped this morning. I'm out of replacements for the left eye, so I'm stuck with my somewhat-fuzzy glasses until I can a) find an optometrist in Toronto, and b) go for an appointment; neither of which are happening while I'm in danger of hacking up a lung. UPS also came back today, and the pendant is now winging its way BACK over the border so it can be reshipped to my friendly neighbourhood fairy godmother, who's sending it back to me as a gift, thereby avoiding crippling brokerage fees.

But on the upside, the pharmacy does seem to be working. The fever and shakiness are worse, but the congestion is better, so is the breathing and [gross bodily thing coming up, so if you really don't want to know, skip the rest of this paragraph] the stuff coming out of my lungs isn't anywhere near as scary-looking as it used to be. But I'm still sick, and fast approaching bored out of my mind. I think I've got cabin fever.

I'm this close to inventing the pneumonia dance.


( 9:11 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Monday, July 22, 2002
 

Back from the doctor. Are you ready for this?

Pneumonia.

Yup. I've got pneumonia. Or possibly a very severe case of bronchitis complicated by smog that presents as pneumonia, and he sent me for a chest X-ray to rule out anything more serious. Either way, I'm sick. And the list of meds I'm now on is almost funny:

  • Antibiotics (for the pneumonia) $46
  • Ventilin (for the not being able to breathe) $20
  • Cough syrup with codiene (for the congestion and to help me sleep) $20
  • Decongestant (for the congestion - duh!) $16
  • Disk inhaler (for the breathing) free -- yay physician's samples!
  • Flonase (for the congestion) also free
  • Halls (for the throat pain) $7 and climbing
  • The look on my face when I added all this up -- priceless


Hi, my name is Sarah, and I'm a walking pharmacy.

I know, I know, look on the bright side, I could be dead. And I'm trying, really. But my mood was not helped by what was waiting for me when I got home.

I opened up the screen door to find a yellow UPS delivery notice between the doors. "Hurrah!" I thought. "My Evenstar Pendant is here!"

Um. Not quite. UPS wants $70 in brokerage fees before they'll give it to me. Which I might, just possibly, have been able to pay before I shelled out everything I had for the pneumonia medication. After a brief fit of hysterical weeping, which I think I'm entitled to after today, I called UPS to confirm, and as I learned once before, they don't budge on stuff like this. I'll see if I can send it back and have it redelivered to a friend south of the border, or something.

And, to accompany all this, we're in the middle of one of the worst storms in a while. Which does not improve the atmosphere.

"Yes, you will have to pay us $70 before we will give you the item." KA-BOOOOOOOOOMMMMMM!!!!!!!!!!!

Universe - 2; Sarah - 0

I think it's time for a Tenth Kingdom marathon.


( 4:07 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

We have blue!

Home sick and dinking with the blog, since I have to stay vertical. This blue is pretty much the colour of my bedroom in Newmarket (the bedroom has a border of leaping dolphins running around the ceiling though)

Love it? Hate it? Tell me what you think!


( 11:07 AM ) Sarah Jane ~





Sunday, July 21, 2002
 

Sneaky Illness

One of the worst things about whatever I have now is that it's sneaky. It knows when I'm going to the doctor, and vanishes the minute I walk in the door, leaving me looking like a hypochondriac and an idiot. And then, when I leave, POW. "Ha, thought you'd rat me out to your doctor, hmm? Well, take THAT, you fink!"

Most of it seems to show up only late at night. It's late at night that my temperature spikes (currently 99.7 after a cold shower). It's late at night that I start coughing so hard I'm sick (though the cough has begun to be persistent through the day, so I may have something to show him tomorrow). It's late at night that I start having trouble breathing and get wheezy. Now, if I was lying down this would make more sense, but it all starts before I go to bed. And of course, it goes away in the morning, so I go to the doctor and say "I'm feverish at night" and he looks at me as if to say "Uh-huh. Sure you are."

Aargh. I am so sick of being ill


( 10:30 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

I sometimes want to cry

Saw two apartments today. The first was Student Housing (captial S.H.). Six people sharing a house, cramped and sligtly gungy. Not that bad, but we'd have to get a separate phone line if we wanted internet, there's no cable (I can't live without Farscape), and we know nothing about the people (they looked kinda ravey). Generally not the kind of thing we want.

The second house was gorgeous (though the door was answered by a naked three-year-old). But we hadn't even made it up the stairs when the woman asked, "oh, is it the two of you? I've already rented the second bedroom."

AAAAAARRRRRGGGHHH!!!!

Y'know, I'm starting to understand what drives people to homicidal rampages. I'm thinking of turning Variel loose in Taramor, because I'm feeling the need to wreak some serious destruction here. Added to the fact that I have to go back to the doctor because the cough is getting worse, my appetite vanished, and there is now abdominal pain in the mix, I am an extremely miffed Sarah.


And a change of scenery

Until her host gets its act together, Wild Butterfly Designs can be found here.


( 5:22 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Do you ever wonder...

If perhaps the reason you haven't found true love yet is because, somewhere out there, there is one person destined to be your soulmate. And somewhere out there, he's looking for you.


( 12:24 AM ) Sarah Jane ~





Saturday, July 20, 2002
 

This kiss, this kiss...

Didn't get to see any apartments today, so you get a short return to my introspective musings on life. Whee!

Okay, so there's a lot of talk going on at Jason's and Sarah's blogs right now about kissing, which of course gets me thinking. So here's my big confession...

I've never been kissed.

Ever.

Why, you might ask? I don't know. See, here's the thing, I bitch and complain about it (and I'm not talking never really been kissed like that Drew Barrymore movie which apparently considered it too pathetic to reach this age and never be kissed at all), but it's not that there haven't been attempts. The thing about me is that I've reached the point now where it's gone so far that I don't want to be kissed unless it's going to mean something.

The two people who've tried were Stalker Boy and Recreational Drug User Boy, but I ended up turning it into casual forehead bumps because I didn't want to be kissed by them. Sarah talks about wanting someone to grab her and kiss her, and while a part of me is SO there, the practical part of me is not.

There have only been two (straight) guys who I've ever liked enough to want them to grab and kiss me (well, three if you count Nick before he was gay). The first was James, who has sadly dropped completely out of my life. He played John Smith to my Pocahontas in one of Tami's musicals, and I'd known him to be a sweet guy for a while, but at Shannon's birthday party I realized that somewhere along the line, I'd fallen for him. I was comfortable with him, and when I talked with him, it was like we'd known each other all our lives (and it didn't hurt that he's the best hugger I've ever met. I'm serious. I didn't think that it was something you could be good or bad at, but if there was a hugging olympics, James would be the gold medalist. Everybody he's hugged thinks so, even those who aren't interested in him that way). Unfortunately, hugging was as far as it ever went. Well, there is the picture of me sitting on his lap, but that's more the result of Shannon being a very unsubtle drunk.

We parted ways, alas. I went off to university, and I don't know what happened to him. I think he's gone weird and rebellious now or something. But I'll always remember that night at Shannon's party, when I admitted that I'd never been kissed, and he said "I'd kiss you right now just for saying that, except I'm afraid it would ruin something special for you." But the thing is, from him it would have been special. There was something about James that made me feel comfortable and safe.

When I do find someone, there has to be that comfort level, which is why the guys who've tried for me never got anywhere (and then they all turned out later to be kinda scary, so it's probably a good thing). Because of the way certain things fell out when I was little, I need a certain level of trust and familiarity before I can really be attracted to a someone. That's the way it was with James and pre-gay Nick.

Oddly enough, the only other guy I want to grab and kiss me flies in the face of all these deep-seated beliefs I hold. I really don't know the Object of my Unrequited Affections that well, but I'd be perfectly happy having him kiss me (and kept hoping for it during our not-a-date, to no avail). I think, maybe, it's because I've been hearing about him since my first year of university, from a mutual friend who happens to be the best judge of character I know and vouches for him. Sort of a trust-by-proxy. That, and we have so much in common it's like I already know him.

So I guess, in a way, that trust and familiarity is there with him, too.

So there you have it. There are, thus far, a grand total of two who I want to kiss me. (Well, if Ben Browder or Colin Firth showed up and tried to sweep me off my feet, I wouldn't exactly be protesting. But I'm talking about two guys who exist outside of my fantasies).

I need to find someone who can make me laugh, who has the soul of a poet, who cares about the same things I do (and, oddly enough, they have to be noticeably taller than me. I have no idea why, but it seems to work this way). I need someone who will be my best friend as well as my boyfriend. James and tOomUA are proof that people like this do, in fact, exist. The only problem is, I can't figure out how to make them see me.

When he passes me by he's a ray of light
Like the first drop of sun from the sky.
And I know he's a king who deserves a queen.
But I'm not a queen.
And he doesn't see me.


--Sarah Brightman, He Doesn't See Me


And now for someone with real problems

Okay, now that I've been all sad and pathetic, I call your attention to the lovely Wild Butterfly Designs link in my links section. Wild Butterfly is a web design company run by the immensely talented Tamara Ward, who is having some problems right now and could really use some new clients.

(She is not helped by the fact that her site host appears to be down, and has been for several days, so keep trying back)

I wouldn't be plugging her if she wasn't incredibly good at what she does, but by fortunate coincidence, she is. So if you need some web work done, or if you know of a person, organization, wealthy millionaires club, etc. who is looking to set up a webpage, please contact her. You won't be sorry.


So how's the writing going?

Yes, right, this blog was originally to talk about the life of a writer. :o) Well, in brief (if you want the extended version, go to the expansinations blog):

Elysium is finished, pending rewrites, and I'm about to start on the second book.

Jory's Song is at Imaginings, Savage Beast is at Black Gate, and the story Julie asked for is on her desk pending the end of the month.

I haven't started the screenplays the proucer wanted, because I want my paying writing to get out there.

Mirror, Mirror and the Mural are on hold, pending me figuring out where the hell to send them.


( 11:50 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Friday, July 19, 2002
 

There's no place like home... There's no place like home...

Today we looked at a gorgeous apartment. Bright and clean, hardwood floors, huge living room, decent bathroom, nice sunny kitchen, and two modest sized bedrooms. Upper level of a nice woman's house with a door dividing the two parts of the house. Quiet rules after 10pm, but movies and stuff are fine.

Think you hear a shoe about to drop? You're getting good at this game.

It's about a half hour walk to Bathurst, which makes it a 45-60 minute walk to campus, and Emily isn't willing to take the TTC to school. Ah well. Back to the drawing board.

In other news, Sheila made me laugh so hard today that I shot Clearly Canadian up my nose (which would have hurt less had I not been congested). Part of it is up on her blog, but part of it only I get to see (nyah-nyah!). Ah, friends who understand you are a rare thing indeed.

I'm afraid I don't have much of insight to impart today, but stay tuned... I got my webcam! Yes, finally you get to see my uber-trendy fashion statements like sarong-and-pigtails or overalls-and-tiara. Whee!


( 8:50 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Thursday, July 18, 2002
 

Hate dem little roachies
Boy dey's awfully fleet
Wavin' der little antennae
Runnin on dey tiny feet

Don't ask me where that came from. It's an adaptation of a song I remember my Dad singing when I was six. Anywho.

Another Day today. To begin with, I was both congested and in terrible pain from my feet (which have blistered, huzzah), and the fact that the storm that moved in set my head to pounding did little to improve my remarkably grumpy mood.

So after a long day at the hostel, I limped down to the lab to spend an even longer day cleaning. And as I was about halfway through the siphoning, I felt a tickling and looked down and freaked out because there was a GIANT COCKROACH CRAWLING UP MY LEG!!!! AAAAAAAAUUUGHHH!!!!

So of course, I freak. Johnston rescued me and took the roach away (when I asked later where he took it, he said "out in the hall. To roam free. Until it comes back. And climbs up your leg again.") I was, needless to say, agitated. And as I sat there, griping about how first they're in my shoe and then crawling up my leg, in this high squeaky voice, Johnston laughs and says "they love you."

Great. They love me. Why can't it be puppies or kittens? Or Colin Firth? I wouldn't mind Colin Firth trying to hide in my shoe and climbing up my leg. But nooooo. It's roaches. Lucky me.

So then Emily and I went to see yet another apartment. This one was gorgeous. Big bright sitting room, two bedrooms of reasonable size, clean bright kitchen, nice bathroom. The problem? It was on the second floor of this old Chinese couple's house, with no separate entrance. Their daughter is a studying freak, and they go to bed at 9. No music, no practicing the flute, no noise of any kind. Ummm.... no. ::sigh::

But, on the up side, the Gorey House guy called! Hurrah! He comes back to the city on Thursday and I get to see the room then. No hopes up yet (for all I know, everybody in the house is a recreational drug user or something), but ooh. Ooh hurray.


( 11:42 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Wednesday, July 17, 2002
 

Have a seat. Will it be thumbscrews or the rack today?

Hi, my name is Sarah, and I have warts.

I don't know why they're so damn embarassing. It's just a proliferation of cells and blood vessels. But for some reason, I'd rather hit myself in the head with a frying pan than tell someone I've got warts on my foot. So of course, I'm broadcasting it to the world via the internet. God, I love Blogger.

(Bear with me, I'm going somewhere with this)

As part of the aftercare I have to apply a layer of acid to them and then sand off the bits of my foot it kills every night. And last night, I broke through the skin. You'd think the wart would be gone by that point, wouldn't you? But no, I went in today, and had shots of liquid nitrogen applied to skin about one cell thick.

Ow is an understatement.

It's like torture. Torture I go in for voluntarily every six weeks. But it has never, ever been as bad as this. I limped home and collapsed on the bed, crying. And then I got up and dragged myself back out of the house, because we had three apartments to view.

To say that I was in pain was putting it mildly.

So the first apartment was a no. It was cramped and dirty basement, and to get to it you had to go down a very long, very scary alley where no one can hear you scream. Uh, no. Not even if you paid me.

The second apartment had promise. It was typical student housing -- weird -- but not entirely unpleasant. It was another basement, but this one had an entryway (which was NOT a bedroom) with cupboard, then a long hall. Coming off the hall on the right were a decent sized kitchen, a bedroom with closet but no window, bathroom, the furnace room, bedroom with window but no closet, and then the hallway took an L turn at the top into this big alcove into which the girls living there now had put their office setup (computer, desk, etc, located at the end of the hall where it was accessible), and a couch (in the L-bit). Just a couch, because the alcove wasn't any wider than the couch (the landlord called it her "romper room". Strange, but not entirely unpleasant. The upstairs is GORGEOUS (victorian house with all the trappings, inhabited by more students), but of course, we won't live in it. The only problem was living space, or lack thereof. They had the real couch (as opposed to the romper couch) sitting in the hall, and you had to squeeze between it and the TV to get past. Area was great, price was reasonable.

The third apartment was the nicest, location-wise. Kitchen with table and balcony, bathroom, small bedroom #1, small bedroom #2, big room. Price is right, too. Problems? None of the apartments are separated from each other, meaning you walk through bits of other peoples' house to get to our floor. THere's an unidentified guy living in bedroom #2. And there's no living room at all. Emily and I both want cable, so this could cause problems.

Of the three, I liked #2 the best, despite the wierdness and the lack of windows. But Emily likes #3.

And there's more to see tomorrow. I'm going to go nurse my poor, poor foot...


( 11:09 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Tuesday, July 16, 2002
 

This is the House That Ed Built...

I went to see The Importance of Being Earnest (great movie!) with Alexandra today (yes, we went to Bakka; yes, I bought too many books, but John doesn't even need me to tell him my name when I want to order something anymore). On my way home, I took a slightly different route than usual, and ran into my dream house.

I swear, it looked like Edward Gorey had built a house and plunked it down in the middle of the posh Annex area. All around the front there was this enormous wrought-iron fence, topped at intervals with stone gargoyles, statues and whatnot. There were more odd statues scattered about the yard. As I'm standing there thinking "whoa", I see the sign. "Room Vacancy. $500/month".

Yup. Freaked out. Started walking home, stopped about ten minutes later, and turned around. How often do you find a room for rent in your price range in your dream house? But when I got back, there was no number. "Rats," I thought, and walked off. Ten minutes later, I turned around again and went back to knock on the door.

I couldn't find it. I looked, but I couldn't find the door. So I left the note on one of the ornamental stumps and went home. If they don't call me back, I'm going back tomorrow after work and trying gates.

There's already a story in progress about it.

And speaking of houses...


Where do YOU belong?



( 11:12 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Inquiring minds want to know...

Are you insane?


( 12:38 AM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

To clarify...

I am not, actually, after him. I just thought he was in need of a hug. :o) I have not yet given up on the object of my unrequited affections.

(and to the 99% of you who have no idea what I'm talking about, don't worry. It's okay.)



( 12:14 AM ) Sarah Jane ~





Monday, July 15, 2002
 

Into the Pits...

Oy. A day. I have a feeling I'm going to be more than a little mad for the next little while, as the apartment search continues and I have ABSOLUTELY NO TIME TO MYSELF. But anyway.

Morning: Bought the pendant. If I were in the US I'd have it in 5 days -- not sure how long it'll take to get to me here. But it's bought, for better or worse. Then pottered off to the doctor, since I was up till 4 last night on account of the fact that I couldn't breathe. It was Dr. Gagnon, finally, who realized that the congestion in my head has started filling my lungs, and prescribed me a super-powered decongestant and a super-powered cough syrup with codine. So I'm SLEEPING tonight!

Afternoon:Dragged myself to the ROM to deliver a speech on the queen bee to a Girl Power class of ten year olds who are learning about important female roles in nature. They were wonderfully attentive and I managed to refrain from sneezing for an entire half hour, hurrah! Actually, it was one of the best experiences thus far at the ROM, and the fact that Amanda said it was either me or she'd cancel the class said wonderful things about her faith in me and wasn't too shabby on the ego either. Huzzah. And then she took pity on me and let me spend the rest of my shift in the office designing an info sheet. Why can't every supervisor be like her?

Evening: Dragged self and roommate to see an apartment, which turned out to be in St. James town, where Jenny lived last year. The apartment itself was lovely and the price is right, but there was abundant evidence of mice and perhaps bugs, and the neighbourhood is scary. I don't think I'd be comfortable living there -- safety is a big concern, and as I tend to project this air of wide-eyed waifishness, I'm thinking living there is a bad idea. So the hunt continues.

Night: Concluding stuff. Concluding that I want to go to WorldCon in September (I mean really, how often is a WorldCon dropped into your backyard?). Concluding that I can't go to ICFA (oh, if only Elysium were published -- this year's topic deals with dark sides and fairy tale retellings. Dammit). The conference registration itself isn't bad, but I just can't afford the $700 flight to Florida. Which sucks big time, since Ft. Lauderdale has the other HUGE selling point of easy access to Sheila -- meeting her was one of the high points of this year, and it kills me that I won't be able to see her again. But $700 is just too much to spare without another grant (yes, I know, must get published so I can apply for grants. I'm working on it). I'll miss the Tensors, too, but at least Thomas is going to be at WorldCon. Arrgh. I need to win the lottery.

And now for something completely different: He's my age, he has a poet's soul, and he's musical. WHY can't there be one in Toronto?????


( 11:44 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Sunday, July 14, 2002
 

Craziness...

This is nuts. Somebody got herself $20,000 in debt shopping in boutiques, set up a website asking people to get her out of it, and she's actually making money! Hmmm... I wonder what would happen if I set up www.buysarahsparklythings.com....

But this is awesome. It's going in my links.



( 11:13 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Sarah talks about breasts again

Yeah, yeah, blame the antihistamines. I've realized I haven't been blunt and non-Sarah-that-everybody-knows in a while.

So I dragged myself in the door tonight and changed immediately into the sarong, because it's frelling hot. I was horribly lonely, so I called Tami to chat (this is why I love Tami -- I can confess the most personal, embarassing stuff to her, and she not only doesn't think I'm giving Too Much Information, she actually Understands! But I digress). As I was on the phone with her, I was making my dinner, and I discovered that the bagels I was going to use for my sandwich were mouldy.

(This is how sad my life is now. I dug through an entire bag of mouldy bagels trying to find one I could eat. No luck).

So once I got off the phone, I decided the only thing to do was go to Steven's and get some buns. But I wasn't about to go out in the sarong (it is NOT Polite Company garb), so I threw on a pair of shorts and a tank top. I really didn't want to bother with the bra, so I left it off.

Here's the thing -- there's a reason women -- especially big women -- wear bras. It's NOT COMFORTABLE and VERY NOTICEABLE when you walk down the street without one unless you have some serious support in the spandex top department, and even then bras are usually recommended. But since Steven's is at the end of the road, I went anyway. Of course whenever you decide to do something like this, you run into people. And here's the other thing -- when you're running around without a bra, everyone in the world is looking at your breasts. Even if they actually aren't. So I'm inching home trying to walk the low impact walk (the one that looks like you're feeling your way across slick ice and trying not to look like you're doing it, but seriously reduces the bounce factor), petrified that everyone I pass on the street is staring at me and thinking "God. Get some support, woman!". Why? Because it's the sort of thing I think every time I pass a woman who really ought to be wearing a bra.

The really sad thing? I was afraid that the nursing mother I passed (who was most definitely NOT wearing a bra) was looking at me and thinking it.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled shy and demure Sarah (Tami, stop laughing).


( 10:50 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Backdoor to Scaryland

So, Emily and I went to see our first apartment today.

It was at Baldwin and Spadina. And they MEANT Baldwin and Spadina. I mean, there's Spadina, there's a chinese restaurant, there's the building. And it's right across the road from the LCBO. Thinking "uh-oh"? You ain't heard nothing yet.

So I get to the apartment to wait for Emily and sit on the front stoop, admiring the rusting fridge in the front yard. She gets there, and we proceed around to the back, where the entrance to the apartment is. We get there by going through the alley between the house and the chinese restaruant, careful to avoid the glass and garbage, around the back of the scary shack and sleeping bag ("Gee, who lives here?"), through the scary back yard and down the stairs into the (basement) apartment.

Inside, it was actually nice. 6 foot ceilings, but nice 6 foot ceilings (good thing Emily and I are both short). Newly (very newly) renovated, it was clean and carpeted. I thought, "hmm, cute little entryway", and proceeded down a hall. To the right, we had a bathroom (nice, but you couldn't open the door all the way -- the ceiling dips down for a duct and the door whacks against it), a small bedroom, and then the hallway opened up to about double the width, which turned out to be the living room. Past that, we had a tiny little kitchen (the fridge and stove hadn't been installed yet, but it was clean), and a little room off to the left. That little room is where the washer and dryer will go, and is also where the entryway will be. Yes, entryway. The door we came in is actually the back door. The cute little (8x8) "entryway" was the second bedroom. Right.

We pretty much concluded that anyone living in the small bedroom would need to have a futon that rolled up in the morning in order to live there at all, and the backdoor to Scaryland isn't a great selling point either. Since I think both of us are of the opinion that "I might be able to live there as long as I don't have to take the small bedroom", I don't think this one is going to work out.

The hunt continues.


( 5:35 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Life? Me?

Okay, this is just sad. I've gone from hopping around toronto-based theatre company sites looking for Gilbert and Sullivan auditions to frantically Googling to find a production of Into the Woods I can be in (no luck).

I miss being on stage.

[Wanders off humming "Justifies the Beans"]


( 12:28 AM ) Sarah Jane ~





Saturday, July 13, 2002
 

Oh, Hurrah!

They've ruled to acknowledge same sex marriages. There's hope for my loved ones yet.

It's good to know that while my life is busy going kablooie, there's still something going right in the world.

(Though while we're on the subject, I have just learned that the object of my unrequited affections is not just ignoring me, he's ignoring everybody, being mired in the middle of his Master's thesis. So there's still hope).


( 9:22 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Long Day

I had trouble sleeping last night. I was dead tired, but the minute I turned out the light, I started wondering how Granny was doing on her first night away from home, and then got turned on to the idea that she WAS home since she's not allowed to leave there ever again, and... well, I don't have to spell it out. It was not a restful night.

Added to that, I spent the entire day at the lab, cleaning. The doctor says there's nothing wrong with me but really bad allergies, which doesn't really mean much when you're so loogy you're worried about taking a header into the stock tank. Now there would be an ironic way to go. Eaten by the fish who've already tasted so much of me (see the blogs on food grinding). I have gotten some of my sense of taste back though, so the Haagen Daaz brownie ice cream bar in the freezer will be most welcome after such a long (loooooooong) day.

Tommorow is more of the same, only I'm NOT cleaning tanks. I'll clean the floor, fine, but seven hours of siphoning for Johnston is more than enough. I need some time off or I'm going to go insane. Well, more insane. At some point, I have to duck away to go see an apartment (yes, Emily and I have begun the search. Not a pleasant experience in downtown T.O.), and then it's back to the lab for the evening feeding. I'm thinking of wending my way to Queen West to see what unusual sparkly things can be found.

And on Monday, I'm ordering the pendant. Yes, I caved. Thank God for my wonderful (tempting) friends.



( 8:51 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Friday, July 12, 2002
 

Stupid Body

About halfway through the think tank tonight, I burst into hysterical tears. Why? Because I couldn't breathe through my nose and it was frustrating me. Oh, there was more (much more) gnawing at me, but isn't odd how when you're really upset, it's the stupid trivial things you focus on?

I'm heading to bed with the ultimate of comfort books, Robin McKinley's "Beauty". Here's hoping things look better in the morning.

(Hey, at least I made Jenny happy. The day wasn't a total wash.)


( 11:45 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Oooookaay....

You can find this blog by searching for Secondhand Wardrobes in Glasgow?


( 7:16 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Fighting the Funk

Granny went into the home today.

She knew exactly what was happening, and she was not happy. My aunt and dad went to check her in, and it was a good thing Dad was along, because the nurse had to tranquilize my aunt as well as my grandmother. Dad told me about it and then left abruptly -- I'm pretty sure he was crying. And now I'm crying. I am so frelling depressed today that I'm fairly sure I'm going to cave on the whole pendant issue -- I'm just holding out a few more days for posterity.

You know that feeling where you can't do anything but you feel that you have to do something? I'm doing something. I've decided to participate in Blogathon 2002 to raise money for the Altzheimer's Society of Canada. The only thing is, it's on July 27, and you have to have three sponsors by July 20. I've contacted the Altzheimer's society and I should have sponsorship information soon.



( 6:30 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Thursday, July 11, 2002
 

Crap

Hello fever my old friend
It seems this game is at an end
Time to stop living in denial
And face this damn recurring trial
Time to stop insisting "it's a cold, that's all"
Cause no one at all
Ignores the touch of fever


( 9:03 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Sicky sick sick

Still sick, and now thoroughly medicated on imitation DayQuil, which though not nearly as potent as the imitation NyQuil, still has me fairly loogy. Or maybe it's just that I've blown my nose so much I've ruptured a blood vessel in my head and am now killing brain cells. It wouldn't surprise me.

So I'm still coughing, still sneezing, still wanting to crawl under the covers and sleep, still at work. Sometimes when you're utterly broke, you have to sacrifice. But ohhhh, am I not doing well. My nose is so chapped that even the 3-ply tissue with lotion hurts (helpful hint: when your nose gets that bad, find chapstick and use it. It sounds ridiculous, but it works. Just make sure you don't use it on your lips anymore). I can't hear because I've blown my ears with the nose blowing (on top of the general head congestion). Yeah, I'm doing well. Uh-huh.

To make matters worse, there's no downstairs garbage here anymore because of the strike. Something has gone off in the produce storage, and because there's no garbage, it's just sitting there. Consequence? SARAH'S OFFICE IS FILLED WITH FRUIT FLIES!!!! AAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRGGGHHH!!!! Sarah is not impressed. Sarah is so unimpressed that she's slipped into third person. Sarah is not a happy girl.

I also have to go clean tanks all weekend, because I'm covering for Johnston (who covered me the last two weeks), so I can't even go home to say goodbye to Granny. Somebody please shoot me now.

The pendant just keeps calling. I have a feeling I may cave soon.

Be not depressed by my utterly pathetic state. Go look at Miranda at the Toronto Trek masquerade. She did that whole costume herself (the site goes up and down, so keep trying). Be cheered by her awesomeness.

Update on how to see Miranda: Go here and scroll down to tt138.jpg. I don't know why it'll work that way, but it does. Stupid server.



( 11:02 AM ) Sarah Jane ~





Wednesday, July 10, 2002
 

Aaaargh

Sick. Sooooo sick. I can't breathe. I can't eat, because I can't breathe. That's what the secondary palate is FOR. Hellooooo? Body? Somewhere along the line, evolution realized you need to breathe while you eat!!! Get with the program. Oy. I'm a mess. I can't even sleep, because I can't breathe. You know the feeling you get when you get water up your nose? That's what my nose feels like ALL THE TIME right now.

And those wonderfully fiendish women are still tempting meeeee!!!!!

::whimper:: At least I'm well stocked on soup.


( 4:32 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Fiendish, fiendish temptresses!

I should have known that where Alexandra and Jenny were, Tami can't be far behind. Yup, she's offering to go in on it too. You guys are wonderful, amazing, awesome, and YOU SUCK! :o) You rock (large), but you suck.

I'm really trying to resist this most impulsive of impulse buys. See, the compulsive buying is a mutation of the compulsive eating. I used to eat A LOT when I'd get upset (which is why I was HUGE up until the first couple years of high school). Round about then I got really serious about the dieting and found friends, so I got better, but then around about the end of high school I got bad and started eating to cope again (even now the thought of a tub of Haagen Daaz Peanut Butter and Chocolate isn't sounding all that bad...). But I knew I couldn't keep compulsive eating, so I found another fetish to replace food.

Jewelry.

I'm a sucker for strange, interesting jewelry. The moment I saw that pendant on screen, all I could think of was "Ooh, I want it. I reaaaally want it". But I also figured out that if I didn't start drawing lines, I'd never have any money because it would all get spent on jewelry (okay, so I leaped happily over the line for Mari's pendant, but it's Mari's pendant for crying out loud! I'm allowed one slip.). But this is one piece of jewlelry that's on the other side of that line, and I don't want my friends sucked over it. It's just not right. This magpie is my own personal demon, and I don't want it tormenting my friends, who really can't afford it either.

But oh, the temptation is great... I wonder if there are any brownies upstairs...

(I really do love you guys)

:o)


( 12:39 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Tuesday, July 09, 2002
 

Fiendish Temptress

Friends are great. Alexandra phoned me an hour ago and proceeded to cheer me out of this fit of depression. She told me stories of her silly students (one of the criteria on the professor evaluation the frosh are sending around is "how sexy is your prof", which she felt obliged to quash), she arranged to go see the Importance of Being Earnest with me next week, and then...

... she started tempting me.

Not half a day spent resisting the siren song of that pendant, and she offers to pay for 2/3 of it as an early birthday present, because I need the cheering. I told her no -- she's on the same budget as I am, and $50 US is WAY too much to spend on a birthday present -- but she's very, very persistent. She hasn't worn me down yet, but oh, my resistance is crumbling....

And now I'm on the phone with Jenny and she's offering to go halvsies with Alexandra. STOP THAT! I shall not allow the magpie to corrupt my friends! Temptresses.



( 11:39 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Frell

Well, Mum just called. Granny goes into a home on Friday.

We've known for a while this was coming. The dementia and incontinence got really bad. And it's not like this is a sudden thing... As Mum pointed out, she hasn't really been Granny for years now.

But this is different. This is... final. She's being put into a home in Milton, where my aunt lives. It'll be good for her in that my aunt is only a five minute walk away, so she'll be able to visit Granny every day. But Milton isn't exactly easily accessible for me. Granny's been a ten minute walk away from my Newmarket house all my life, and now... She isn't. My parents have told me that they'll be visiting regularly and I can go with them, but it's so strange.

And she can't ever come home. The Altzheimer specialist was quite clear on that. It'd be too confusing, so she can never leave the home again. Not even to visit. This is it. Grandpa is going to be all alone in the big yellow house from now on. And that's what's really turning me into a wreck.

My aunt is really motivated to create a therapy garden at the home, but Mum keeps trying to tell her that Granny just doesn't care about the garden anymore. And that's really what tells me that Granny isn't Granny anymore. All my life, Granny has been The Gardener. She was president of the Newmarket Horticultural Society for 17 years. She created an award for the juniors when I started winning a bunch of competitions at the society. All my life, Granny's garden has been the epitome of natural beauty. It's huge. I took my first steps in that garden. I played there growing up. Granny taught me the names of all the flowers in it at one point or another. And now she doesn't care about it anymore. She does't care.

I know she's not actually gone yet. But in many ways she is. This is such a final step. It's an admission of sorts. It's impossible to live in denial anymore (though my aunt seems to be managing). Talking to her is so hard, because the person who helped raise me when I was little just isn't there anymore. I've been Katie (my 12-year-old cousin) to her for the past two years now. Honestly, I don't think she's called me Sarah in all that time.

I am so frelling depressed right now. Which is extremely dangerous -- I impulse buy when I'm upset, and I can hear the Evenstar pendant calling my name. I'm staying away from it. Well, I'm trying to stay away from it. I don't know how long I'll manage it though. It's not like it'll help anything, but dammit, getting new sparkly jewelry makes me happy. And I need to be happy right now. Anything. Aargh. Am I a horrible person for going shopping everytime someone I care about gets sick?

Okay, I'm degenerating into incoherency and I'm crying too hard to see straight anyway, so I'm cutting this off. I'll update as I find out anything.

Sometimes life isn't fair.


( 9:46 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Magpie shrieking

I spoke too soon! Gah. I can't find any prices on this site, but I'm betting that's going to cost a lot of money. Too much for poor scrapin'-by me, but it's fun to drool. Thank you so much, Dayle, for pointing me that way -- I tried e-mailing you, but for some reason your mail server doesn't like my e-mail address. :o)

Oh, it's hard being a human magpie.


( 7:58 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

The Magpie Emerges

I WANT IT!!!

:::quiet whimpering:::

(I want this too, but at least that's not available to taunt me.)


( 1:21 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

What am I?

I have come to the conclusion, based on two links from Jen's blog, that I am an extroverted introvert.

Most indicators point to introversion -- the shyness, the bookishness, the jungian test (though oddly enough, in that one, I'm smack dab in the middle of judgement and perception), but I hate being alone. I'm nervous in new situations, parties take a lot out of me, I need to be alone often so that I can write, read, or what have you, but I hate being alone. I hate going places without company. I hate not being able to have the company of a friend when I'm lonely (which I am frequently). Hmmm... maybe I'm just an introverted extrovert. Or maybe I just need a boyfriend. I honestly don't know anymore (and I'm not exactly in a state conducive to thinking).

Or maybe I just don't fit into neat little boxes.

Ay me. Ah well, back to the grind.


( 12:19 PM ) Sarah Jane ~


 

Frelling heck

I am so unbelievably sick. Well, better than yesterday, but still sick. I'm at work because I can't afford not to be (another reason I need a job with benefits like sick days), but I can barely breathe and I'm sneezing like mad. Fortunately, I have decongested enough that I'm actually understandable on the phone (somehow I doubt my boss would be too impressed if she called and I answered "::hack:: Gud avderdood, Toroddo Cobudiddy Hozdel." -- yes, I did sound that bad yesterday).

There's no food in the house either, which would irritate me more if I could actually taste. As is, I could munch on styrofoam and wouldn't really be able to taste the difference. Emily pointed out that now would be a good time to stock up on disgusting healthy foods since I wouldn't be able to taste them. :::sigh::: I'm going to attempt to drag myself to the store and buy some more soup and some crackers after work. Wish me luck.

Oh, for the day when I am my own boss and can spend days in bed going over character background rather than trying not to pass out over my keyboard.



( 11:03 AM ) Sarah Jane ~





Monday, July 08, 2002
 

Home Sick

I took the day off to recuperate (having woken completely unable to breathe and feeling like I'd been kicked in the head a couple times) and figured it would be a great opportunity to catch up on correspondence and stuff. Instead, I spent the entire day asleep. It was like mono all over again. I had about fifteen minutes of up time before I'd have to go back to bed and nap for a couple of hours. I've actually lost my senses of smell and taste, too. Do you have any idea how weird it is to eat something and not be able to taste it at all? ::sigh::

So, a little late, here is:

The Con Report

Friday

Ran around like a chicken with my head cut off trying to figure out how I was getting to the damn con. Finally ended up taking the GO bus from Yorkdale, which turned out to be insanely easy, and arrived at the hotel all right. Checked in, went up to the room to wait, and pulled out the first three chapters of Elysium to make chapter summaries and thread notes while I waited (and realized I'm already in trouble -- in chapter two, the girls abandon Cecy at the third floor landing, but the floor plan reveals that there IS NO THIRD FLOOR LANDING. Oy.) Then Jana called up to the room, and after some confusion as to who I actually was, she arrived with Chris/Marsha and Don, and we went down to the Atrium for dinner.

Big mistake. The food was overpriced, and the waiters had a terminal case of disgruntled. Honestly, I have never met anyone quite so angry about bringing ketchup.

Back up to the room with Jana, and then off to the Farscape and beyond panel, where spoilers abounded (thank you Jen for supplying me with all those CDs!) What came after that is a blur (I think it involved the dealer's room at some point), though we met up with Erin, Stuart, and Clint, that much I remember. Oh yes, I claimed the Grimoire of Infamy and spent a while filling in my entry. Jana and I ended up the night in 10 Forward with Dan, where the conversation took a decidedly downward turn (Dan, stop that!), at which point I began to fade and headed back to the room to pass out. Jana came back, and through a series of events that now elude me, Jana started singing good morning and much giggling ensued.

Saturday

We woke far too early for the non-Julie breakfast that ended up being the also-Julie breakfast, as the Atrium (shudder) had booked the back corner of the restaurant. I ended up at a table with Amanda, Peter, Kevin, Ruth and either John or Dan (leave me alone, I'm sleep addled. Either of you care to enlighten me?) where much fun conversation ensued, as well as the presentation of Elvis Stitch to Kevin (ah, people who understand!). At 11 I went to the Farscape Primer, without spoilers this time, where I won a pack of Julie's Farscape Card doubles for knowing that Scorpius hangs around in hawaiian shirts. Whee! Then we dashed with Julie to Team Banzai (many newsgroupies ended up there) and watched Eric Choi (who I still have to meet, dammit!), Julie, Peter Watts, and Isaac Szpindel argue science (which turned into Peter and Isaac arguing science waaaay above our heads. What fun!)

Peter, Amanda, Dan and I escaped to Lone Star for lunch (which featured much MEAT), more scintillating conversation, and Peter's fabulous entry into the Grimoire of Infamy. Then I went to see Virgina Hey and Amber Benson speak before...

The newsgroup party!

Wow, was that ever fun. As I've said before, it's so great to find people like me, and here was a whole room full of them! The strangers that weren't. There was much hilarity as Mike presented a whole whack of stuff to Julie, and then Dan dragged me up to present the Grimoire of Infamy to her, which she received with just a hint of mistiness. :o) (For those not on the newsgroup, long story short, the Grimoire of Infamy contains personalized entries from each of the newsgroupies on why we belonged in the book, usually having to do with how much we liked Julie). The big newsgroup photo followed, and ended with the lot of us trooping down to the masquerade.

We are quite noisy when out in force. :o) Clint was the second on stage, dressed as a little storm trooper (he won for best media presentation in the junior category) and all the newsgroupies screamed for him. John did much noisy heckling from the row behind us, and Dan kept making me laugh (and trying to force chocolate upon me which I managed to resist for a whole day). The highlight of the masquerade had to be Miranda (another newsgroupie), whose costume was so good even the newsgroupies took a while to figure out it was her. She wasn't just dressed as Chiana. She WAS Chiana. She ended up winning for best media presentation (her costume was phenomenal), and Virginia Hey was one of the judges, which was just cool. But wow. She was good. I'll post a picture if I can ever figure out how. Poor Julie had a panel at 11 pm, but the rest of us headed down to the dance for a while (where they played WAY too many Star Trek themes, though I damn near killed myself laughing watching Kevin dance to Super Mario Brothers). We decided to leave after a while, and Jana and I spent some time in 10 forward again (before being scared away by creepy guy) before ending the night talking to John and Josh and maybe Kevin -- I honestly can't remember who was there at that point. I was that tired. Though I do remember a very nice hug from John ending the night).

Sunday

Breakfast was meant to be at 8, but when Dan came knocking, we were all too far out of it to do anything about it. So when I woke up at quarter to 9, there was a moment of panic. All for naught, though -- John, Erin, Stuart, Clint, Dan, Jana and I wandered down to William's for breakfast (smoothie and chocolate muffin. Mmmmm, nutritious). I wasn't the most intelligent conversationalist -- besides being half asleep, whatever strange bug knocked me out today had already taken hold by that point, so I was overmedicated by reactine and completely unable to breathe).

We headed off to Julie's reading, which was fabulous as always (Julie is up there with Rob Sawyer and Neil Gaiman as "authors who do good readings"). She put up with the newsgroupie teasing quite nobly, and read some nice teasers from Hidden in Sight. After that, I went to the Dealer's Room to get Julie to sign my copy of Explorer and to talk to Chris Owens for Jenny (who had, by that point, left 11 messages on my cell asking me if I'd met him -- actually, only three of those were messages. The other 8 were hang-ups.) So I talked to him, and of course, he remembered her. "Yeah, she was in the limo! I always remember the chicks in the limo." When I told him she was too sick to come, he grabbed one of the $20 photos from his pile, signed it with a get well message, and told me to give it to her. It was actually quite sweet.

(Oh, newsgroupies take note, I have hooked Jenny on Farscape. Mwa-ha-ha!)

After that was lunch at the Atruim again (shudder -- do not ask me how that happened). I had a salad I couldn't taste by that point, and Erin was served a sandwich on mouldy bread (John, being all gallant and... well, John-like, took it back and yelled at the staff). We left in a hurry and the Kennys and I went to see Virginia Hey again. Afterward, I lined up for Virginia's autograph, and spent my time in line being entertained by the extremely angry people who didn't get Dominic Keating's autograph (I believe he's the british guy on Enterprise). Man, that was bizarrely intense. But somehow I ended up at the front of the line for Virginia's autograph, and some guy coming out of the Amber Benson signing gave me his autograph card, so I managed to get not one, but TWO of my DVD inserts signed. "To dearest Sarah, tons of love, Virginia Hey." I'm such a fangirl. :o)

After that, I dashed back to the end of the "Can anyone be a writer?" panel to say goodbye to Julie (big hugs, hurray!) and met back up with Amanda and Peter. We went to the Amber Benson speaking, and while they stayed for Anthony Daniels, I went back to the lobby. I was severely sick by this time and fading fast, but Dan was there and helped me hang on to my sanity. There were plans to go to dinner after, but Dan was late for his bus and I was so sick by that point that I couldn't see straight anymore. Fortunately, Amanda, Peter, and Amanda's friend (whose name escapes me -- I'm so sorry! I was really, REALLY out of it!) drove Dan and me to Islington, where I parted ways and stumbled onto the subway. I fell asleep and almost missed my stop, but I did manage to drag myself home safely before collapsing into bed.

Final Thoughts

I know there are SF authors who don't like cons, but I really had a fabulous time. I've never been anywhere with people who are so much like me. It was incredible. I could wander around in my renfaire bodice and jeans and not look out of place. These people understand!

It's weird, though, there were a spectrum of people. There were those who seemed to consider themselves too good for everybody else. There were those who considered themselves beneath the guests and followed them around like puppies, desperate for some sort of acknowledgement. But the people I hung out with, who welcomed me with open arms even though I'd never met them before, were those like me. People who, as Virginia Hey put it, were "just a little quirky", who were there to share their love of this little bit of escapism we call Speculative Fiction.

It's funny, but I really came to an understanding of the die-hard fans who obsess over the celebrities. I've seen it occasionally with the authors I know -- certain people following Holly, Sheila, and Julie -- but it's ten times worse for the celebrities. They worship these people (I think the Amberhollics actually scared Amber Benson -- I heard something about them hounding her and taking down her license number).

I've been fortunate enough to get to know three very wonderful women whose work I admire, who saw something in my work and encouraged it. I was a great fan of all three before even meeting them, so the fact that they not only liked me, but liked my work, had me tickled pink. I love these women and respect them greatly, but there is a line I haven't crossed. I don't worship them. I know that they're better than me at writing, but never once have I thought or acted like they're better than me. That's a line I saw crossed a couple times this weekend. Yes, I'm an admitted fan girl, but I don't want autographs so that I have some tangible proof that my life has actually been touched by these celebrities. I crave autographs because they make the things I have so much more personal. Which is why I don't see the point of buying photos to have them autographed -- I get autographs on things I already have and treasure, like books or CDs or DVDs, so that when I read, watch, or listen to them again, they mean just a little bit more to me.

But for the most part, the con was composed of the people like me. The people who were just there to have a good time. And now I have to figure out some way to scrounge up $300 plus hotel for Worldcon in September, because it's here in Toronto -- there's no WAY I'm missing out!


( 9:32 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Sunday, July 07, 2002
 

Back

Home again. Had much fun. Sick as dog. Must sleep now. More later.

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...........


( 8:20 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Friday, July 05, 2002
 

Boldly Going

Ah Friday. Best of all days. And in a few more hours, I'm off to TTrek!

The Martins were well settled in last night -- and still on California time, so they were up LATE. Emily and I kind of danced around them -- they've moved a WHOLE LOT of stuff back into the house, effectively chucking our organizational scheme out the window. I passed the time paying bills and catching up on my e-bay feedback (leaving comments for Jenny was fun!)

Cammie did fix the dishwasher though -- apparently she gave instructions on how to clean the filter to somebody, who refused to admit it, which is why it effectively stopped working. She showed me how to disassemble it, clean it, put it back together, drain it, and reconnect the top spinner, and when you consider that I'm the one who fixes the toilets, unclogs the bathtub, buys the mops, disinfects the kitchen, poisons the ants, and does the composting, it only makes sense that I'm also the one who fixes the dishwasher. But I'm really starting to resent it -- there were four other people in the house, you know! ::sigh:: But enough of that.

Toronto Trek. Right. So I'm off for the weekend to my second con (and the first one that's celebrity rather than author oriented), and I have no idea what to expect, but it promises to be a lot of fun. I'm so glad I stumbled onto Julie's newsgroup, because it's so much nicer going to one of these knowing there will be people I know there (a lot of people -- our newsgroup gathering is so big that we had to book con space). Though my roommates are threatening to withhold my hotel key until I give them Elysium. I'm bringing the first three chapters to bargain with. :o) I'll deliver a full report when I return, so until then, see you!


( 10:44 AM ) Sarah Jane ~





Thursday, July 04, 2002
 

Mistress of Death

Beware all who dare oppose me, for I have rained death and destruction upon an entire species!!!

Yup, ants in the kitchen again.

Being the "mature, responsible one" (God, I hate that), I had to go to the hardware store today to buy a mop and some ant poison, because our kitchen has become incredibly scary and nobody else will do it. ::sigh::

So it's 35 degrees in here (no idea what it is with the humidex) and it's damn hot. So, being the only one at home, I shed my t-shirt and wrap my sarong around me like a strapless bra (twisted at the middle and tied at the back), then put my overalls back on so I can clean the damn kitchen and rain hot liquid annihilation upon the hapless ants who've decided our kitchen is an all-you-can-eat buffet. Picture it: Me, in a not-quite-a bra with overalls, my hair in braided pigtails over my shoulders, with big yellow rubber gloves on, singing along with Meridith Brooks's "Bitch" (it's on my "Kitchen Cleaning" tape -- formerly known as the "Very Cool Mix" tape). And in walks Adrian, without a shirt (normally not a bad thing with guys, but Adrian takes "skinny white boy" to a scary extreme). I'm standing there cringing at my state of trailer-park chic, looking at Adrian, and all I can think is God, we are the poster house for white trash.

They're calling for a break in temperature for the weekend, thank God. With the garbage strike on, it's starting to get really whiffy down here, and it'd be nice if the trash would stop baking. And it'll be nice to be able to sleep without having to do it on icepacks (I'm serious).


( 1:18 AM ) Sarah Jane ~





Tuesday, July 02, 2002
 

Keeping House again...

I love Sarah's semi-weekly rotation of webcam pictures (no, that's not her -- Jason is blog-sitting), so I'm looking into doing the same thing. With the amount of e-mail I got about the not-a-sarong, island-girl look, I figure there are a fair amout of people who'd be interested in that sort of thing. So the dinking with the sidebar stuff is a precusor to that.

What do you think?


( 12:14 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Monday, July 01, 2002
 

Man, is it hot in here?

Just got back home to find a scorching letter about God in my inbox (no, Tam, it's not from who you think it is).

So, just to clarify:

I realize I get rambly. That's because I use the blog to sort out my feelings and figure out exactly what they are. So, the essence of what I said was: I believe that God is a religious thing, the Pledge of Allegiance is a patriotic thing, religion should not equal patriotism, and it really doesn't affect me since I'm Canadian. I do want to hear your thoughts on God; I don't want to be told that I should think them.

Furthermore, if I have ever had a conversation with you about religion that didn't end with one or both of us screaming at each other, I was not talking about you. If you've never told me "you're such a nice person, it's a shame you're going to hell" (I'm not kidding -- I have heard this), I wasn't talking about you. If you've never told me what to think, I wasn't talking about you. If you read this blog regularly, chances are I wasn't talking about you.

Oy. I should learn that when I start opinionating on stuff like this, people will react and I should stop taking it personally. Tami has pointed out that I have a tendency to backpedal and apologize for my opinions, which I really shouldn't. I don't expect other people whose blogs I read to do it -- on the contrary, I enjoy reading them, even if I don't always agree. So why should different rules apply to me? Because I want everybody to like me. My life will become much less upsetting when I realize that that's never going to happen.

Although I will say that Jenny posted a dissertation on the subject that illustrates perfectly why I've never been uncomfortable discussing religion with her. Unlike my OAC Chemistry teacher, whose solution to my emotional breakdown in his class was that I should find God, because I was obviously miserable being a heathen. ::sigh::

No place like home



So, in other news, it is incredibly hot in this house right now. The temperature shot up today and I am heatstroked, big-time. I'm drinking tons and trying not to move overmch, and letting my fan do its work on the highest setting. Yet I have no desire to be back in my parents' air conditioning.

I'm not sure when "home" became whatever place in Toronto I'm living, but it is. I love my family, but I can't live with them anymore. It's just too stressful.

This weekend was an odd weekend. I had fun, but I didn't enjoy it. The high point was on Saturday, when my sibling and I, after shopping furiously for our parents' birthday presents, decided to go see Lilo and Stitch. Which was a wonderful movie -- the characterization was surprisingly deep, and Lilo's older sister actually had an attainable figure (my first comment to my sibling when she ran onscreen was "my God, she has thighs!"), and it painted a real-world picture of family that I never would have expected from Disney. It's up there with Lion King as my favourite Disney movie now. Then I got to go with Jenny to see Twister (who is gorgous), and spend some much-needed time with her.

Walking home from the movie, my sib and I had a very frank, very serious conversation about our lives and where they were going. Right before he threw our bus money into the bushes (it was an accident) and I killed myself laughing.

But after that conversation, wonderful as it was, things just didn't sit right. I went to Shannon's birthday party yesterday, which was a lot of fun (Robin decided that Shannon's apartment needed rearranging, so after watching her and Tami go at it for a bit, I pitched in. Shannon was not impressed, but we were thoroughly amused). But even though I had a great time, something just seemed -- I don't know. Off. I don't know if anyone noticed (Jen? Tami?), but I wasn't feeling like me at all. I don't know what's going on

I think I may be depressed again. I'm not walking around in black reading death poetry and considering slitting my wrists or anything, but something about... ME.... seems not-right. Very not-right. Yet I can't put my finger on anything that's actually wrong. It's like I'm walking through life with a stone in my metaphysical shoe, but I can't seem to find it when I try to shake it out. Am I the only person this happens to, or does everyone go through stuff like this?

Maybe it's just the heat. After slugging through the muggy at the Canada Day festivities on Main Street today and then coming back to my sticky apartment, I'm not exactly in my prime. I'm curretly sitting in a wrap-skirt I've tied as a sarong (which is extremely difficult -- trying to do it this way means you have to perform several odd contortions to fasten the ties at the back, but it's the best I have) and hoping nobody comes home to see this. But I suspect it's not just the heat. I wish I could have had Tami over -- talking things out with her often illuminates what bits of this twisted mess I call a psyche aren't sitting right. And it doesn't help that I've run out of new books to read. Even my escapism is denied me! (Yeah, I know, so write. Leave me alone. I need to wallow for a bit. :oP ).

You know what really worries me? I keep thinking that I'll feel better when I've moved into a place that's more mine than my landlord's and have a job that doesn't make me want to beat myself over the head with a hammer. But what if I don't?

Aargh. I'm going to go fetch some chocolate peanut-butter ice cream and try to relax for a bit.


( 8:19 PM ) Sarah Jane ~





Sarah Jane Elliott
The often frustrating progress of my life and writing...

(Once known as "The Mystic's Dream", now known as "Dream of the Dolphin", but inclined to change title depending on what's stuck in my head)

Okay, I liked "Confessions of a Post Graduate Pity Whore" a lot more than I thought I would. That line is still hilarious. But I've started writing again, so it's time to go back to before. :o)





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A Thousand Words for Stranger

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