Archive for October, 2008

Let’s see then

As a majority Conservative government races anything else to the 155 seat mark, I have a few things to say to Calgary West.

The following only applies to those of you who either voted Anders or did not vote.

First of all, those of you who are not at least 3rd generation Canadian? Get out. Anders doesn’t think you’re Canadian and since you voted for him, or carelessly let him in, you obviously agree and do not wish to be. So:Get. Out.

Secondly, those of you who are not a middle aged, white, middle or higher income, Christian males? Anders will be shooting you, personally or in spirit, tomorrow morning at 9am sharp at your voting station. Please return there for your due. After all, this is either who you voted in, or the punishment for your apathy.

And to those of you who are left and who are just voting PC because you’re “supposed to vote Conservative?” I hope that the above touches you, and hurts you, so you think at least a little before you X next time (or X at all next time).

And to the rest? I’d like to curse and cuss and everything else. I just don’t see any point. The rest of you really were voting for the person that you think was best, and that’s ok even if I disagree with your choice.


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Many, bloodsucking parasites. *Rant Alert*

Okay, so I got distracted from writing part two of my New Perspectives posts.

Tuesday is voting day here. I’ve been peering at the “Vote swapping” groups on facebook (I have no idea if it really is legal so if you’re planning on it be sure to do your research first), debating them and wondering.

The only party I could possibly exchange a vote for, in this most conservative running, in the most conservative city in the most conservative province is… you guessed it! The Conservatives.

Not. A. Chance. Maybe not even if there was a gun pointing at my head while I was looking at the polls.

Now, I don’t have much against the Conservatives themselves. But Anders. Oh sweet cookies. Anders.

Let’s consider him for a moment, shall we?

~ Immigrants: (and this includes children to immigrants) should not be allowed to vote, no matter if they’re citizens, been here their whole life (after all, if their parents immigrated they’re not really Canadian citizens), or snuck in yesterday. No voting if you’re not an Aboriginal! Except they’re not white, so I don’t know if he’d want them voting either.

~He ignores the budget set for his campaign (and, c’mon, does he really need a campaign at all?! We all know “everyone” is going to vote for him!)

~He wants students to pay for their own education, but refuses funding to provide them with summer jobs

~”Rob Anders, however, was the only MP to vote against [Nelson Mandela be given honorary Canadian citizenship”, justifying his actions by claiming that Mandela is a “communist and a terrorist”.

~Anders is constantly being mocked by the Conservative newspaper. I can only imagine what the liberal ones say about him…

~He thinks that the PCs are not Conservative enough

~He’s been, for lack of a better way of putting it, told to shut the *@&$# up and stay out of sight, by his own party. No wonder they stuck him here, where a lamppost with a “Conservative” sign hung on it would be voted in. With 90% of the votes, no doubt

So, personally I’m going to vote for something that works better with my personal beliefs (NDP). For the next election, though, can we PRETTY PRETTY PLEASE have some other conservative running? If it has to be Conservative, can we at least have a Conservative representative that the rest of the party isn’t ashamed of?

Someone, please, run for the Conservatives as an independent or something. (Just don’t come anywhere near to being similar to their colours, or you’ll be in HUGE trouble! Because apparently Conservative votes can’t read the ballot where it states which party you’re running for. Just X by the one that starts with a “C” you’ll be alright. *Rolls eyes*)

Seriously, Anders needs to go. Actually, I need to move somewhere less Conservative. Fortunately, I’m pretty sure Anders is one more stupid statement away from being booted from the party (I can hope, can’t I?)




Various Calgary Herald articles and editorials over the years

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Hello, I’m back!

I promised you that I would have many new paradigms to explore once I got back from traveling.

Hoo boy do I ever. And please believe me when I say these only scratch the surface.

Anyway, enough of my bragging. Onto my writing! Mwahah!

1. Realizing just how little is a “need” and that the rest is, really, all “wants”

Now I’ve always considered myself a frugal person; My dad borders on cheap and I take after him more than I’d like to admit. I do the whole “ask yourself if you really want it” when I buy something, I purge clutter, I make meals from scratch, I don’t buy new clothes, etc.

I’m not nearly as frugal as I thought I was. That is, I indulged in a lot of “wants” without realizing they were wants.

Some examples:

Shelter. While I totally wouldn’t want to spend a winter in a tent, houses are at least slightly overrated during the summer. Okay, so a house is still nice when it rains, and living in a tent can be hard and stressful and challenging… It is still amazing how easy it was compared to what I was mentally preparing myself for. The tent became a sanctuary for me. Somewhere safe to hide from the world, be me, be safe. And it actually did keep the rain off alright. The amount of space within the tent didn’t really bother me either. Spending the month in the tent gave me confidence that I’ll be alright living in a small house.

I think the only reason society really needs so much room, is because of all the crap we are convinced we need. Commercials, social pressure, cliques, fashion, even depression-era thinking (“I might need it someday”); It all presses us to save stuff, horde it. And the more stuff we “need” the more space we need to keep it in. Really, when all your stuff needs to fit in a backpack anyway, a tent has plenty of space.

Stuff. Ah, yes. It all fit in my backpack (just a regular old school backpack) and a duffle bag (since I was lacking in the hiking type backpack). Scratch that. It all had to fit into that space. I was worried, taking so little. Turns out I took way too much. I didn’t use the oven mitt. I didn’t need the dish towel. Or both washcloths. And (kinda ick, but whatever) I don’t think I ever did dig out all of the underwear/socks I brought. The flashlight was a flop. Etc. etc. etc. I am glad I brought the one outfit that I only wore twice: when I was doing laundry and on the greyhound home (I’d feel sorry for the people on the greyhound with me if I’d had to wear some of my dirty clothes on the trip home).

I came home and promptly got rid of tons of stuff. I used a “if you needed to carry it on your back, would you?” prompt. It worked wonders. There are some things I’m just not going to get rid of, even if the answer to the question was “no” (my keyboard, computer, school supplies, kitchen supplies; stuff like that). Asking that did put much of my junk into perspective. I feel very light and free now. And, honestly, I usually go through and purge my stuff a couple times a year (I’d already done it twice this year). I can only imagine what something like that would do to a person who doesn’t purge. Really. Clutter takes up a TON of your energy. Even if it’s out of sight and you think it’s out of mind.

Transportation. Do you realize I went to BC, spent a month in 3 different locations and didn’t “waste” any gas? That I took a ride that would have gone out to Shambhala anyway, got a ride from there to Grand Forks (that was following that path). Then from the Sanctuary to Keremeos, again I got a ride that was going the same way. Then came home on the Greyhound. I do need to work on being able to take the city bus (I get panic attacks on them). There were still several points in the trip where I stopped, looked around and went, “Wow, I got here without using any gas, spending much money or owning a car.” I meant it. It was an amazing feeling. I didn’t have a car to start with, and this has reaffirmed that I don’t need one.

Food. Trail mix, day in and day out, sucks. I can eat “my casserole” (veggies + white sauce) almost nonstop, but trail mix just doesn’t cut it for me. I really, really, really enjoy hot food (I’m not cut out to be a mother, remember?). There was several points in the trip where I stopped and thought (yes, there was lots of epiphanies and sudden moments of introspection), “We have food and water, and the tent. Nothing else matters.” I’m horrendous at dealing with the unexpected and that was a HUGE step for me.

Clothes. Okay, so this one probably only applies to 99% of the first world’s population when they are traveling; I have gained respect for those who do not wash their clothes until the water in the washing machine will have enough dirt to plant potatoes (totally stolen from Terry Goodkind). Seriously, why do we need to wash our jeans everytime we wear them? Yes, I really, really enjoyed washing my jeans after I dropped a rotten tomato on my knee (My jeans smell like rotten tomatoes/ ’cause I dropped on on my knee/ My pants smell like rotten tomatoes/ while working with Timothy). I didn’t really feel the need for pristine clothes the rest of the journey though. Yes, there are certain limits imposed by society. Yes, most of those limits are a tad on the over zealous side. Guess what: Society is made up of individuals. You’re an individual. I’m an individual. Let’s change society. Chose one thing that you think is kept “too clean” (and this doesn’t need to be clothing) and slowly let it drop. Want to use your towel more than once? Do it! Want to wear a pair of underwear for a week? I’ll be here making a face behind your back — while admitting to myself I did the same thing while I was out of the city. Be brave. We can do it! Or something.

More to come really soon. And I promise “really soon” doesn’t equal six months this time!

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