Thursday, September 8, 2011

O Summer, where art thou?

"Oh look, there it is!"

Summer has been woefully short this year.

Of course, it's not helped by the fact that I took summer this year as well. But when one is desperate to graduate, what can you do?

I definitely abandoned my blog yet again. So blogging wasn't one of the many things I did this summer. Meh. I did plenty of other things though, so I guess that's a consolation. Aside from school and the essays that latches on like leeches, I also took (gasp) a statistics course! And I did not fail! I know I know, the chances of me taking anything related to math AND not have the final result looking like it's been destroyed by a Texas-sized meteor is just, as they call it, astronomical.

P(me taking a statistics course) x P(me passing the statistics course) = Get the hell out of here, you kiddin'?

Well, thanks to one of SFU's many rules applied to undergraduates, I was forced to take it because somehow every student will be better-equipped for the horrors of society if they know how to add some numbers together to make another number. I know, crazy eh?

It hasn't been a bad summer though, I must say. And it's not only because I did not fail my stupid stats course.

June, 2011.

Ahh, June. Normally this is the time when school is in full swing and I'd be busy crapping my pants because of a) essays; b) midterms; c) presentations; d) my aunt hogging the washroom. This year though? It's a tad different. Thanks to some stellar performance by the Vancouver Canucks instead of being dismissed for the third time in three consecutive years by the assholes in Chicago, we made it all the way to the Stanley Cup Final.

It's funny what happens when a major sports team make it this far -- everything just sort of... stops. Statistics? Pfft. Essays? Meh. Midterms? Who gives a flying crap! I don't even know the names of my professors! OH LOOK! ALEX BURROWS JUST SCORED IN OVERTIME! HAHA TIM THOMAS YOU SUCK! WE'RE BRINGING HOME THE CUP THIS YEAR! SUCK IT BRUINS!!...

... As far as I am concerned, the finals stopped right there. I don't remember anything that happened between game 3 to 7. What? We had a scoring drought? Luu is being blamed for everything again? Riot? What riot? The day before my birthday? Now, that's something I should be able to remember now, isn't it?

Oh, right.

June also happens to be the month of my birthday. So Sonia Mak and Teresa Li decided to throw me the best surprise party in the history of the universe.

Thanks people!

Also scored three Canucks jerseys in one night -- which I was going to wear all summer, but...

July, 2011.

The Cup-denial phase starts. This is when you get back to your normal, boring life and sob in quiet depression over the loss. Of course, such is not helped by the fact that Vancouver suddenly pissed rain for a couple weeks and turned into November. In this time period, you're willing to stab anyone who's from Boston. Hell, anyone from New England who speaks with a weird accent (think Matt Damon in The Departed) would be vulnerable. Alas, since we're Canadians, we just spend most of the time quietly sobbing in a corner. And saying sorry.

This is when I downloaded roughly 50 movies and old television shows. Dr. Strangelove? Check. Amélie? Check. First season of ER with George Clooney still in the cast? You bet! Countless nights were spent watching videos on my computer while I sobbed to my heart's content.

Thank you, ER. Although I'd be much happier if you weren't set in Chicago.

August, 2011.

August was really the month when summer started for me. Summer semester was nearing the end, and I really couldn't give a rat's ass towards the gigantic failure that is statistics. I wasn't really bothered with my political science paper either -- I wrote the darn thing in 12 hours. All 3500 words of it. You'd imagine my surprise then, when I saw this on my own paper:

"Simon, you're the best paper writer in the world. A+. Signed, professor."

I landed on a wedding gig, so with my painfully amateurish photo equipment I yet again took photos for a wedding -- this time, some engagement shots in Gastown. However, it went splendidly, and happy couple Owen and Saskia couldn't be more sweet and made the afternoon ever more fun for me.

Best photoshoot yet.

In keeping with the tradition of July / August being the road-trip period (2008 July: Toronto > Montreal > NYC > Philadelphia > DC; 2009 July: Ucluelet, BC; 2010 August: Miami, FL), three separate trips to Seattle were in order. Observation #1: there are a couple of USAF fighter jets doing random fly-bys over Downtown Seattle in the middle of the day for reasons unknown, which was quite a sight. Observation #2: The Cheesecake Factory makes awesome cheesecakes. Verdict: Seattle is quite awesome.

My parents also suddenly decided to come into town, blitzkrieg-style. Pretty glad to see them, especially this time I got a surprise new camera from them. Which we took to Yellowstone. Oh, have I mentioned that we drove to Yellowstone National Park? No? Well, we drove to Yellowstone National Park. Quite some awesome pictures taken over there. Arguing the choice of music played in the car for 7 days with my cars, on the other hand, was less than desirable. I also got caught doing almost 80 in a 65 zone in the middle of Montana, by what seemed to be the friendliest cop I've ever met.

Good evening sir. How are you?
Er, good.
Are you in a race?
Me: No, sir.
Cop: (smiling) Are you winning?
Me: Er, no, sir.
Cop: Do you know how fast you were going?
Me: I don't know... Around 75?
Cop: Hmm you're quite close. I clocked you at 78. This is a 65 zone at night.
Me: Oh, I am sorry. (thinking to self: fuck, fuck, fuck...)
Cop: May I have your driver's license please?
Me: (scrambles to find wallet, which seems to have disappeared in the most inopportune time, but found it anyway)
Cop: (looks at license) Where is "Burnaby"?
Me: Er, that's in Vancouver, sir.
[Few moments later]
Cop: Alright you're free to go. Just keep it under 65 for the rest of the way because you might hit a deer this time of night. I don't want you hittin' any deers.
Me: Yes, sir.
Cop: Where are you headin' to?
Me: Whitefish.
And then my dad pretty much defused the whole situation by asking
Dad: Do you know any good motels over there?
Me: (has a heart attack)
Cop: Oh... Well, there are plenty of motels over there. Do you want a pool? Try the Best Western o'er there. It's pretty nice. Just head into town and turn right about a mile in. Can't miss it.
Me: Thank you very much.
Cop: Yeah no problem. Just try to keep it under 65 'cause there are deers around here. Y'all take care now.
Instinctively I went and shook his hand. Amazingly, he obliged. After that, I buggered off and did 55 the rest of the way. Now, picture this happening to me, but in LA:
[Helicopters hovering around, 10+ Ford Police Interceptors parked behind my car, sirens blaring, guns blazing]
Cop: (through microphone) Driver! Get the fuck out of the vehicle!
Me: (Stumbles out of the car, falling because I can't feel my legs. Gets tackled by 20 police officers, gets hit in the head by a police baton, Arrested Development style)
I kid, I kid. Yellowstone was quite awesome. My 5-year streak of no speeding tickets issued by a cop lives on. Although combined with the three trips to Seattle, the distance I've driven this month could've taken me to Halifax, Nova Scotia. So I'm a little tired of driving, you could say.

Oh well, school just started now. So soon I'll revert back to getting tired of a) essays, b) midterms, c) presentations and d) living alone.

RIP Pavol Demitra and the victims of the Lokomotiv plane crash.


For those curious about my 30-day song challenge that was abandoned like an orphan in a Dickens novel, here's the whole list.

Day 1 - your favorite song: Death Cab For Cutie - Grapevine Fires.
Day 2 - your least favorite song: Black Eyed Peas - Fergalicious.
Day 3 - a song that makes you happy: Hall & Oates: You Make My Dreams.
Day 4 - a song that makes you sad: U2 - Walk On.
Day 5 - a song that reminds you of someone: Hellogoodbye - Two Weeks in Hawaii.
Day 6 - a song that reminds you of somewhere: Hot Hot Heat - YVR.
Day 7 - a song that reminds you of a certain event: Green Day - Holiday.
Day 8 - a song that you know all the words to: Third Eye Blind - Motorcycle Drive By.
Day 9 - a song that you can dance to: Village People - YMCA.
Day 10 - a song that makes you fall asleep: Maclean - German Industrial City Retract.
Day 11 - a song from your favorite band: Third Eye Blind - Semi-Charmed Life.
Day 12 - a song from a band you hate: Nickelback - Far Away.
Day 13 - a song that is a guilty pleasure: Loco Locass - Le But.
Day 14 - a song that no one would expect you to love: Édith Piaf - Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien.
Day 15 - a song that describes you: Simon & Garfunkel - The Boxer.
Day 16 - a song that you used to love but now hate: The All-American Rejects - Dirty Little Secret.
Day 17 - a song that you hear often on the radio: Jason Mraz - I'm Yours.
Day 18 - a song that you wish you heard on the radio: Hot Hot Heat - Middle of Nowhere.
Day 19 - a song from your favorite album: Maclean - Much Better People.
Day 20 - a song that you listen to when you’re angry: Metallica - Enter Sandman.
Day 21 - a song that you listen to when you’re happy: Jackie Wilson - I Get the Sweetest Feeling.
Day 22 - a song that you listen to when you’re sad: Rent - Will I
Day 23 - a song that you want to play at your wedding: Elvis Presley - Can't Help Falling in Love.
Day 24 - a song that you want to play at your funeral: Justin Bond & the Hungry March Band - In the End.
Day 25 - a song that makes you laugh: Rent - La Vie Boheme.
Day 26 - a song that you can play on an instrument: The Beatles - Yesterday.
Day 27 - a song that you wish you could play: Lynyrd Skynyrd - Free Bird.
Day 28 - a song that makes you feel guilty: Pearl Jam - Yellow Ledbetter.
Day 29 - a song from your childhood: Backstreet Boys - Everybody.
Day 30 - your favorite song at this time last year: AC/DC - Night Prowler.

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