Monday, November 20, 2006

The Dutch are taking over

So, funny story: First of all, to get the connection straight, meet my boyfriend Dan:

And this is his roommate Matty:
IMG_1633 IMG_1686

For the sake of ridiculous pictures, this is their friend Igor. But Igor isn't a critical link in the chain of my funny story:


Surprisingly to all of us, Matty has got an actual girl to like him, despite his ridiculously hairy chest
. Her name is Sarah and she is Fantastic:

Everyone has been really intrigued by her last name, and one Wing Night too many resulted in coming up with a fairly interesting nickname for Fantastic Sarah. When I found out the Dutch heritage of said last name, I made a little giggle to myself, and explained how I had a Dutch friend in high school we used to tease. I almost felt like asking "you wouldn't know Stephanie, would you?" but then I realized how stupid that would sound. Its not like every Dutch person knows every other Dutch person.

Tonight, as Sarah and I were discussing Paul's description of women and marriage in the bible, she said "I should call up Eva. She'd know." The first thing I thought was - Is there an Eva in EVERY Dutch family? Then I realized that none of her siblings were named Eva. "Who's Eva?" I asked. "My cousin". "What's her last name?" I asked?

This girl I've been hanging out with for weeks, this girl who had me over to her house to watch and Grey's Anatomy and CSI, this same girl who cuts open dead people in school is our Stephanie's cousin.

Its a small world.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Free Hugs

Well, it was Jocelyn who brought to my attention the Free Hugs Movement a while ago. I watched the movie, and I started to cry. What is so incredible about this is that it makes us stop from our busy busy days and remember the beauty of hugs. There is something we forget when we start to become adults, and that is the ability to really truly hug. Just think back to those sometimes wonderful and sometimes not-quite-so-wonderful teenage years. At least personally, I used to hug so much more than I do now. And the hugs were so much more sincere. Why is that? There are some really memorable hugs and huggers in my lifetime. Bryn, you certainly are at the top of my list. Mike, you're there too. There is just something so wonderful about the feeling of arms wrapping around you, wrapping your arms around someone else, that is so pure.

On Monday, Oprah flew 'Juan Mann' to America so that she could get one of his famous hugs in front of 22 million viewers.

What is it that makes this a world wide phenomenon? Why is it that this was on Oprah and 22 million people watched? Why is it that the original YouTube video brings so many people to tears? It is because we as a society are in desperate need of a hug. We are a world full of stories who just need to be held and cherished. It is a touching story because for once, our media isn't consumed with people looking out for themselves, loving only themselves. Here is One Man trying to reach out to individual people. All the self love in the world will never be as fulfilling as a simple, sincere hug.

Watch the YouTube video, even if you have watched it before. Watch it all the way through.

Hug somebody today. Don't do it because it's the current 'it' thing to do. Don't to it because you need it. Do it because we all need it. Free Hugs. And I promise, the next time I see you, you'll get such a big, loving, sincere hug. Promise.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Code Name: Jack O'Lantern

Two days before Halloween, I asked for help on deciding on a costume. Although I didn't take anyone's advice (although Bryn's was my ultimate favorite, and we couldn't go with MJ's suggestion because Matt doesn't seem to have his shiny pants), I did end up dressing up for Halloween with my other half. This is how it came about. Tune in later to see the pictures from the actual night).

Sorry about the shoddy camera work. If this doesn't make you go seasick, nothing will. (CLICK IMAGE TO WATCH). I had a really hard time getting the video on this site, so its in Windows Media format. Sorry, that was the best I could do.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Barista Laura

I now count myself as one of the employed. Tonight I walked into the new Starbucks on Queen and Spring Garden to pick up my coffee and tea passports, in which I am encouraged to try as many Starbucks drinks as I can stomach. Empire Theaters never did that. $3.00 off over priced combos doesn't serve as much of an incentive to buy lots of theater food, (not that you would want to anyway). But with Starbucks, I get STAMPS! It actually is like a real passport. I should put Adam's picture at the front of it and try to board a plane with my Starbucks passports. Maybe this new experience of trying all the coffee and tea that Starbucks has to offer will serve as a new blogging thread! I can blog about my initial impressions of each drink. That sounds mildly exciting.

Matty expressed a certain amount of animosity towards the Starbucks brand. Although he admitted that they served good coffee, according to him, in Europe Starbucks is as American (that means bad) as McDonalds (ouch!). I, on the other hand, really enjoy Starbucks. They have thoroughly sucked me in to the entire experience, and I love it. Now, I don't go so far as spending eight hours a day there like some people I know, but I enjoy the drinks they serve and the environment. The only way I could make it better would be to make the coffee fair-trade. Now, I am part of the experience!

**EDIT** I may be wrong on the fair-trade bit. As I read, it seems like they are at least partially free-trade. Yay Starbucks!!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

When I Fall...

Nine-point-eight straight down, I can't stop my knees...

My style of blog writing has changed dramatically since I first started this blog. It went from emotional writing to posting songs to religiosity to poetry to pictures to philosophical musings to insignificant babble to updates on my day.

Can't look below me or something might throw me...

Lately I have been all about snapshots of the happy times in my life and brief expressions of the upcoming excitement in my life. It has come to this because this is how I want people to see me. Honesty is overrated in the blogging world. In fact, you can invent a personality online. No one needs to know if its true or not, if the smiling faces are just an early Halloween mask. Even closest friends and family can't tell. It sounds like Laura, it looks like Laura, it must be Laura.

Look straight in the mirror, watch it come clearer...

This is not to say that I've been lying. The smiles have been and are real. The good times have happened, and they are continuing to go on. The internet is a strange vortex of information that sucks everything into it and never lets it out. What I write here will be accessible years to come. When I become Prime Minister, cheap journalists will reach back into the Internet Archives to retrieve what I said on October 30, 2006. And what did I say? What do I say? What do I write when what I say makes people believe they know my innermost thoughts? How do I portray who I am through a few words and snapshots?

Curse at the windstorms that October brings...

What do I have to say to be worthy? What is it I have to write to be respected and loved and taken seriously? What do I have to write to stop being a disappointment? I can't stop assumptions people will have. I can't help it if someone looks at a snapshot from my life and jumps to conclusions. This is why my blog has become somewhat vague.

I wish I could step from this
scaffold onto soft green pastures shopping malls or bed with my family
and my pastor and my grandfather who's dead...

I want to be known for my smile. I want to be remembered for the laughs.

I wish could fly

From this building, From this wall...

What would I do if I could fly? Where would I go? Would I escape this?

The painting's creating, and I'm just erasing. A crystal-clear canvas is my masterpiece....

I'm not four years old anymore. I don't have the pigtails or the innocence. I don't play with dolls or preach to teddy bears. I am not a six year old girl anymore. I don't have the mushroom cut or the buck teeth that were just too darn adorable. I do not wear underwear that corresponds to the days of the week anymore. I am twenty. I am twenty. I am twenty and yet still a child? Who am I? Do I know yet? Do I have the choice? Am I free to take responsibility, am I free to be Laura?

They're frightened of jumping in case they survive...

I don't want to write about the elephant in the room. The beauty and tears and the sweat and the pain are sitting in some pit waiting to be told in a story. Will I tell it? Will it be adopted? Why can I not tell the story I am yearning to tell? Who do you want me to be? Tell me and I will invent someone that you can be happy with. You can come and read about her every day. She'll be happy. She'll have wonderful relationships. She'll talk about the things you want her to so that you can believe that she is really and truly who she says she is. Do you believe her? Will you believe her? Will you stop assuming?

And if I should try
Would you catch me
If I fall?

What are the words I need to say for you to believe that I am she? What pictures do I need to post? What stories do you want me to tell? When will love finally mean respect and support and trust and belief. I need to be believed in. Because without being believed in, I become just a fictional girl whose story is told on some fictitious blog. Believe in me. This is me; Halloween costumes removed. This is me, naked and aching and ever so tired.

When I Fall...

Thursday, October 26, 2006


80's prom queen Its Thursday, and on Saturday night, there is a Halloween Party at Dan and Matty's place (if you're in Halifax, get in touch, I'd love for you to come!) Since I have been delegated to do most of the planning for this thing, I can promise that it is going to be one Spook-a-licious Shindig, complete with Halloween pingpong apparently.

The problem is - I don't have a Halloween costume!! I have to wear a Halloween costume because I could dress silly every day of the year, but on Halloween I have an excuse! Granted, I still have the dress that has seen me through at least two or three past Halloweens (including my grade twelve year, the last time I went Trick-or-Treating.) Although dressing as an '80s Prom Queen' has served me well, all the way up to the last time I dressed up in first year university, I think it is slightly redundant, and so I need a new idea. Remember, I only have two days to figure it out.

So, although it may seem like a cheap way to up my comments, if you read this, please give ANY ideas for Halloween costumes! (And for bonus points, think of a costume that can be 'coupled' since I think I am in charge of thinking of something for Dan too!)

80's prom queen and Road trashed (I mean kill) 01

Thursday, October 19, 2006

"I'm bloggerific!" she said

Well, I just finished my final assignment/essay that is due this crazy week that Satan built. Seriously, I had at least one major thing due each day this week. It is 11:15 pm and I can claim that I made it through this week alive. I just need to make it to French class tomorrow to hand in this composition at 1:00 and then I'm on the weekend stretch. The weird thing for me is knowing what to do with myself right about now. Needless to say, I am exhausted. The past two nights I have been awake since 3am working, and this morning I woke up earlier than usual so that I could meet Dan at his apartment before he left for work (I don't have my inkless printer hooked up, mainly because it is inkless, so I just use Dan's). I should just have my own key to his apartment I think. Anyway, Murphy seemed to have it out for me this morning as I realized after I got to Dan's house that I had e*mailed myself the wrong paper that needed to be printed. Instead of sending the paper, I sent the oral presentation that was prepared for another class today. I kept my wits about me until the presentation (which apparently went really well!) was over, and then I crashed. I think I lost everything that was remotely intelligent in me during my final class of the day, which I passively stared my way through. But its all done now. And I can't believe it is almost midnight. I am not used to going to bed this early anymore.
In my last post, I mentioned that I was looking forward to the football game between Mount Allison (who WON their game two weekends ago against StFX!!!!) and Saint Mary's that was meant to occur last Friday night. Unfortunately the Norwalk virus (Norwalk virus??... and it isn't just Mount A anymore...) hit campus, forcing the university to close and extracurricular activities, including Friday Night's football game to be canceled. This mean the highlight of my weekend became Dan and Matthew's Ping Pong Palooza party, where I engaged in making much-to-strong-for-everyone-but-Matty jello shots (or "jelly shooters" in Welsh), combining all sorts of deserts to make a super-delicious-and-not-at-all-nutritious blended ice cream drink, and losing at Ping Pong to someone who shares my name. All in all, the huge, ugly, in-the-way ping pong table seemed to be of some use after all.

So, for your viewing pleasure, and for that purpose only, here are the atrocious six pictures that were taken with my camera during the night.

IMG_1612 Watching people try to do the solid jello shots from the iddy-biddy plastic communion cups really was hilarious. Somehow the women were quite efficient at the entire process, but the guys ended up spooning it. (One distinction of note was that one of the guys was as good at using his tongue as the girls, but I can't remember if it was Cole or Igor.)

Notice that Kennedy came to spread his love and the Norwalk virus.


We L-named Brunettes need to stick together to find a cure for the species known only as the "DAN" who preys on such innocents.


In which we show our best "Seeing Matty's incredibly hairy chest" faces.

Alright littlings. Its time I hit the hay, for the sake of my health. I have this weird, unknown (only because I haven't gone to a doctor about it) eye condition that seemes to flair up when I don't get enough sleep of when I am stressed. Right about now its about swollen shut (what a lovely image, eh? For those with a weak stomach: I'm exaggerating). I think my body is telling me to get off the computer and go to bed. Alright body, you win.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Saint Halifax Sea Moose

Apparently I have a hard time calming down and getting to sleep at night. I just finally basically finished unpacking after living in Halifax already a month and a half - my room looks decently livable and hopefully I can finish it all by tomorrow. There will be a few big
plastic boxes that I moved in sitting in the middle of the floor that have nowhere to go for the time being, but at least it looks livable and homey. I now only need to figure out how I will arrange my frames with my posters on the wall, and fix the broken framed picture that fell when I first moved.

On Wednesday as I was finishing up a short essay due that afternoon, Keltie called to invite me to a Mooseheads hockey game that night. She got cheap tickets, so Matty and I (Dan was sick and had other plans) doubled with Keltie and Charles. It was a wonderful game. I was sure that the Mooseheads would destroy their opponents, the Saint John Sea Dogs, as their most recent meeting was a shut out. The first period looked like it would go that way; Halifax got two goals and made some wonderful saves. Saint John turned it around however, and the score was tied 4-4 after three periods had passed. After five minutes of overtime there had been no goals scored. The match came down to a shootout in which Saint John came out one shot ahead of Halifax. Luckily, I could still claim some pride from the win, even though I was rooting for Halifax.

The game was spectacular and so exciting, and it was so much fun to be out with Keltie and Charles and Matty.









Next up: MtA football game at SMU tonight!

Now maybe will I go to bed?

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Giving Thanks

Happy Thanksgiving! I am back to my cute little rodent infested Halifax apartment after a Thanksgiving weekend back home. Every family has quirks, but it is wonderful spending time with the people I love.

I meant to do schoolwork this weekend. I also meant to get a bunch of pictures from this weekend. Neither of these seemed to happen. Even though things have been so great since coming to Halifax, I haven't even got one snapshot of Dan and I or of Matty or of my roommates or of my cute little apartment. I was going to get the pictures this weekend during the thousands of turkey dinners and the family outings and the evenings cuddles with my snookums. Alas, the camera only came out once when we had our annual Brace family Thanksgiving Dinner- the one time a year when the greatest majority of our family comes together within one household. Although this even was still lacking some members of the family, we figured it was time for a long overdue group photo.


Friday, September 29, 2006

Butt Out!

I am finishing week four of my Living in Halifax Adventure and it really has been great. I am feeling happy, really and truly happy, and it is incredible. School is busy and I've been working hard, but I am so glad I am here. I like being a Haligonian!

... except for one thing: People in Halifax smoke like chimneys. I have never experienced this problem before. Mount Allison didn't have a huge population of smoking students (or so it seemed). Everywhere I have lived in New Brunswick, I have been able to avoid the places where people light up. But in Halifax, they smoke EVERYWHERE! especially the sidewalks. What makes people think that they should smoke in public areas like this outside of their workplaces? No matter which direction I walk to school, I am inevitably going to pass quite a few people who are sharing their lovely habit with me. Yesterday, I somehow missed the smoking rush, yet even with no one standing on the sidewalk outside the hospital, there was still a cloud of second hand smoke giving me my daily dose of carcinogens.

I have never felt the need to condemn people based on their bad habits. Yes, if you smoke, its your choice. But if I had the choice, I would chose NOT to inhale your second hand smoke. So please stop smoking around other people! Please lock yourself in a garage where no one will ever have to deal with the effects of your nasty habit. Or at least, keep off the sidewalks!

Sunday, June 25, 2006

How I Sit Through Lengthy Graduation ceremonies.

This past week has been a pretty important one in the life of my family, and especially in the life of my sister. Amy's prom was on Wednesday and she graduated on Friday night. It is pretty surreal that she will be going to university next year. At least its not Molly yet, but for those of you who haven't seen her in a while, she just finished fifth grade and will be entering middle school in the fall, so she has graduated in her own little way as well.

I figured that vlogging would be a perfect way to give myself something to do during Amy's graduation ceremony. I don't really like graduation ceremonies because I find them long and drawn out, and I could think of millions of ways that these ceremonies could be shortened - like by raising the passing grade to an 85% or something. Yup. That would do it.

To all my faithful vlog readers (ahem), it is long past due since I have vlogged. I have a hard time finding time to edit in the summer what with my work schedule and spending time with my family. But if you are craving a little Laura time, you should check out my blog. I try to update it as much as possible. I was up to one entry a weekday a little while ago, but I have a few things to do at work now, and so that might start to become less often. Anyway, check it out when you're needing some Laura-Love.

I took some pictures of Amy during her grad and prom. A few of them are on the video. A few others need to be developed. I might show some off in the future.
Warning: Vid takes a few minutes to watch. It was important to me to keep all of this in it though, so please enjoy.

quality="high" width="320" height="256" name="movie" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" pluginspage="">

Watch the .wmv file

Monday, June 12, 2006

Heat Vision and Jack

Okay, so this is not a vlog that I made, clearly, but it was a pilot program that Fox brushed over. I think you'll enjoy. I've heard it called The Greatest Television Show Not to Air. I think it is pretty darn awesome, what do YOU think?

I have been doing some renovations to my Xanga, and hope to soon do some of the same to my Blogger here. Basically, I am making a distinction between the two, making one distinctly a blog, and the other a vlog. As soon as I find the time to get around to figuring it out, I should even have easy access to click back and forth between my sites.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

For he's a Jolly Good Fellow

Due to a slight oversight on my last posted vlog, I failed to say a little blurb about Gregory "Dub" Wallace like I did with MJ, Carolyn, and Dan.

So, without further ado, and with many apologies, I will attempt to redeem myself:

Before I even met Dub, I had heard all about him, including a story about sleeping in jeans. I also had in my head an image of who this Dub fellow was from a picture of him giving the camera the middle finger (if I remember correctly) that my boyfriend had hanging on his wall. These were my first impressions, even before I had met the guy.

But I have since come to know Dub as one of the most romantic guys I have ever met. No one will ever top the "Will you McMarry me?" proposal to MJ that happened in the lovely McDonald's in Halifax. Seriously Dub, you certainly keep the bar high for my expectations for Dan!

Since Dub and MJ have moved, I have not had anymore nights spent in the Acadia bar, or eating Peel Pub wings which ended up causing food poisoning. Dub, you should move back - so what if Alberta pays more? Nothing is more fun than getting sick off of pub food with friends!

Monday, May 22, 2006

Too Bad I'm a Loser....

There is a rumour going around that I have lost my mind. Or, maybe it is just me who is saying that. Either way, my sanity has been questioned a few times since coming home for the summer (or at least more than usual!) This might just be the icing on the cake, and I blame it on the abundance of work during a ‘long weekend’.

How much work is too much work? It isn’t too much if the money is there, is it? That’s one opinion. But money might not be as important as health. This morning, after waking up at quarter to five, I manage to faint and fall in the shower. Luckily I turned off the water right before I went out completely, and I wasn’t in the tub. Instead, I hit my head against the plastic-like shower walls, which give a little. Otherwise, it could have been bad news, especially since I was home alone. I’m feeling slightly better, but the light-headedness is still present, along with the headache from hitting my head when I fell.

Unfortunately, I made this movie before I hit my head. There is no excuse for my behaviour!

(My plan for the weekend, before I was offered to work overtime for double pay, was to go down to Halifax so I could see MJ and Dub who travelled from Alberta, along with Carolyn who is leaving soon. I was really looking forward to going, but fortunately or unfortunately, I’ve been working long hours for good money and poor health instead.)

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Why I despise video games

I have expressed my dislike for games before. Truthfully, I don't have so much of a problem with it, especially because I know that people who mean a lot to me seem to like it. And I know the advantages of gaming - it brings friends together, it increases dextrousness and hand-eye coordination no doubt, and it increases computer literacy and apparently makes you smarter (I heard that one once.) It doesn't seem too harmful in moderation.

I also understand the disadvantages.

Today, as I logged onto my GoogleHomepage, I happened to click on one of the news links. I was appalled and re-subscribed to my hatred of video games.

Why are women degraded everywhere? On television, in the movies, on music videos, in music, in nuclear power plants! I was watching a vlog just yesterday on how even the vloggosphere is turning into a place where only the hot naked women are appreciated. Everything, everywhere, women are goggled at like fresh meat. And you don't realize it so much as when you work in an industry that is swarming with men. I believe that not all men are equal, but I tend to forget that some men aren't just talking to me because I have a great personality and a good mind.

There's an argument that women are just as bad, and perhaps they are - but the reason for this is because they are sick of being talked about like a toy, and as an act of rebellion, they are doing it right back. And honestly, when I meet a guy, the last thing I think about is sex or how luscious his body is.

This makes me angry.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Yer Late!

So, you're right - I STILL haven't vlogged! (on this site anyway!)

What was that?! You should check out Dan and Laura's site? Well, if you insist!

Truthfully, I would totally vlog for my site too, if I had the time. This has been like one of my only opportunities online at home (I can't edit video at work, of course!) I am having some ideas though.

So, as you wait for me to finally get my act together and vlog, go check out what trouble Dan and I have been getting into!

(I also updated my Xanga!)

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Courtesy of Zits

(click on picture to enlarge)

Well, this is my problem... I've been having a really hard time doing anything blog/vlog worthy. Actually, that's not entirely true. My life has been extremely full these past few days, and I have been full of emotion, but it isn't the right type of emotion to publicize. I have even found the need to write over the past few weeks, and I have done a little bit of that, and hope to do more - but it just isn't blog writing.

As I have been exploring the world of video blogging recently, I've noticed how different my life is videotaped from my written life. I wish I could sit down and write a blog like Matty writes blogs, or like Dan used to. They write blogs that not only comment on the situation of the world, but that make you laugh as you read it! I am not that funny of a person. And I don't feel comfortable commenting on public events because I worry that I will be seen ignorant. I also don't feel much of a desire to write that way. Maybe it just isn't my style (although I don't know quite what my style is, being "style-less" and all.)

Vlogs are created and viewed in the same nature, especially for someone like me who is not as competent in that form of media as other vloggers might be. For me, a vlog should be interesting, and show the fun side of me. I was thinking about what Michael Tyas said in one of his vlogs, when he was commenting that no one who knows him in the vlogosphere knows his bummed out side because that's not the Michael that he vlogs about (pardon the paraphrase). And I think quite a few vloggers would be in this boat. As much as express and demonstrate emotion through some of my blog writing, I much prefer to vlog when I have something interesting and at least somewhat funny or happy to record. Lately however, I haven't found that opportunity. My one happy-fun-vlog tale was going to be about my new glasses, but that fell through, and now they just become another reason for me to be ticked off and stressed.

Maybe I should just sit down and force myself to vlog. I would do the same thing with blogging, but I suppose that is what I am doing right now! I don't know. I still don't think I can talk to a camera until I get out of this slump that I find myself in now, and that might take a while.

PS - I don't normally post the same thing in both my Xanga and my Blogspot. This is an exception. You should still try to check out both from time to time!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Laura's Super Fantabulous Chocolate Chip Cookies

I made this vlog on Sunday, April 23rd, but haven't had the chance to get to editing it (or really doing much else on this computer for that matter) because Amy, my sister has been spending most of the evenings on the machine. I don't have too much of a issue with this, because it is mostly homework that she has been working on, which is certainly acceptable.

Another reason why I have been away from the computer lately is that I started my summer job on Monday (Monday and Tuesday were a chance for me to be re-trained) at Point Lepreau Nuclear Generating Station. Now, I worked this same position last summer as well, and so I am have not forgotten much from then, so I hopped right back today ready to go, and was actually somewhat busy. But, it is basically an hour drive to and from work in the morning, which means I have to leave the house by seven at the latest, and I don't normally get home until at least five. This makes for long days and early mornings. This should mean that I get to bed in good time at night so that I am not too tired to drive in the morning. So, I have little time to myself now that work is here. This means less vlogging, and less time to edit videos.

I'm sure you'll be hearing more about my Point Lepreau Nuclear Power Plant escapades in the near future, if only in blog form.

I cannot wait until I have my computer here from Sackville, if only because it is in need of a major reformatting. But my vlogging is also putting a lot of strain on the home computer. We have had it for about six years, and the video is filling up the C drive fairly rapidly. I'll need to burn them on some discs soon.

I have a few (two) ideas for future vlogs which I would love to get to sometime soon, but I don't know if I have the time to devote to it. One of them may just end up being an idea for a blog I guess, I just want to explore the issue, and I have no plans for images to go along with them. Maybe sometime this summer I'll get around to the big vlog idea I have. We'll see.

Anyway, on Sunday night, I had time to spare... This might have been the last time for the rest of the summer that I'll be in that boat, but you're definitely welcome to take a peek at my Sunday night:

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Whats that? Another one?

For those of you who have ejoyed coming to my site to check out the vlogs, and to those of you who like checking out Dan's vlog a whole lot (because his are even better than my lousy vlogs)...

There is a NEW VLOG in the vloggosphere for you to check out!

That's right! It's THE ADVENTURES OF DAN AND LAURA and it has a real easy site name to remember... just That's right, just lauradan.

You can even subscribe to it!

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Yesterday's Vlog Part 2

I started off yesterday's vlog with the explanation that since getting home for the summer, my days have not gotten any more relaxing, but perhaps slightly busier. This would be why I made a Part 1 and a Part 2 of my vlogs! So, here is Part 2!

When I got home yesterday afternoon after all the creepy Saint John sexual harassment, I took my other sister out for supper before her swimming lessons. She had wanted to try 'vlogging' too, so we decided to make one together! Here it is!...

Today's Vlog Part 1

**EDIT** Audio Fixed! But now it is just Windows Media Player available. Maybe later I'll add the flash version.

Well, today, I took quite a lot of video. It seemed to be that type of vlogging day. But, it worked out that the first half of the video and the second half didn't jive and so I made TWO (or am in the process of making two!)

And this is PART ONE!

BIG NEWS today though! It hopefully will solve a lot of my most recent problems! (See my vlog for the BIG NEWS).

Sunday, April 16, 2006

"Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia!"

Happy Easter!

Well, it has been a busy Easter weekend, but a really special weekend as well. My little sister Molly got baptized today. I thought this would be an excellent beginning to the "Conversation God" challenge that Anthony created for his last Video Blog Week submition. What better way to start off my addition to the conversation with a video of one of the major symbols that is central to Christianity.

I also think that this is an interesting addition to my blog because when I was talking to some people about baptism, it seemed odd that a ten year old girl was getting baptized. "Isn't that a little old?" someone asked me. Some people only know about infant baptism, but there is also believers baptism. Here in this video is an incredible peak on one beautiful individual standing before her family and church and expressing her death and rebirth in Christ.

So, excuse the shaky hands and the brutal video quality that my digital point and shoot offers. I hope you can look past all of that.

Happy Easter.

(Song on video is How Deep The Father's Love by Joy Williams.)

(PS. Sorry, I tried desperately to convert this to anything other than .wmv. Unfortunately, this is the best I can do!)

Friday, April 14, 2006

Great Haligonian Smoothies

This vlog was filmed a few days ago, and has been on Dan's vlog since. Slightly different edits, though this time!

And Eric, Dan and I do a way better vlog than you and Dan! Don't kid yourself!

Watch with Quicktime

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Passing Time

So, I'm sitting here trying to pass the time, listening to Tracy Chapman on my iPod and drinking hot chocolate. Its so hard to see this white box in front of me screaming for my fingers to add letters so that it says something interesting. But what does it matter if I add anything to this white void? I have a video to add, but I'm on the wrong computer for that right now. Video blogs are interesting, aren't they? They don't require any effort on the part of the viewer. As long as the video creators can entertain, the work stops there. But it takes effort to read the words I add to this blank space.

Once read however, it doesn't take any effort to assume.

I have been feeling so discouraged when it comes to writing lately. A professor told me I had no style. I have people who read what I write and tell me that it is too long. I have people who read what I write and give me hell about who or what is between the lines of each sentence I spell out.

Someday, I hope I can sit down and let my fingers dance along the keyboard so that somehow a story will come out that everyone will want to read. But, I fear that the psychosis that has given me my story will also be the psychosis that keeps me silent. It isn't until I sit with a pen in my hand or a blank screen and keyboard that I feel like I am finally looking into the clearest mirror ever. Everything else somehow clouds this person I know. Am I the girl in the photographs or the videos? I am always so surprised when I see myself in those mediums because I don't recognize the person there. I don't know what image I would recognize, maybe I don't even know the image of myself? I am an idea though. But the idea is never thought through. It is never realized.

I want to have memories. I was rereading a short story from my Canadian Literature class while preparing for my upcoming exam. It was about a writer who immigrated from India to Canada and wrote about his life in India more often than his life in Canada. The short story I was reading showed his parents commenting on his writing and being somewhat disappointed that it didn't speak more to his life in Canada. The father theorized however that it takes 10 years to really separate oneself from memory so much that you can write about it clearly. 10 years. That's half of my life. The past ten years are therefore still fraught with emotions so that I cannot quite understand them or their impact on my life. I have no memories I can write about, no memories I can turn into a story.

What would it take for you to enjoy what I say? Who likes literature anymore anyway? I am a part of such an attention deficit society that I even find the videos annoying and boring at times. Entertain me! Entertain me! I understand your point of view; I don't even like what I have to say.

But I'm just passing time, remember.

Monday, April 10, 2006

"They Say that I Can Move the Mountains"

(click on image to enlarge)

Yesterday was Palm Sunday, the day which Christians celebrate the day Jesus entered into Jerusalem on a donkey to crowds who laid their coats and palm branches on the ground in for the donkey to tread on. Hosana means "save now".

Most of the crowd spread their coats on the road ahead of Jesus, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. He was in the center of the procession, and the crowds all around him were shouting,
"Praise God for the Son of David!
Bless the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
Praise God in highest heaven!"
Matthew 21:8-9

For as long as I can remember, the churches I have attended have had Palm branches available on the Sunday before Easter. Children usually did a procession into the church waving the green, leafy plants. Even the adults would get a branch.

But there was always a difference between the adults holding palm branches, and the children who held them. Kids can make anything fun, including pieces of tree. And so, they play with the palm branches in church. They wave them around. They use them to dance. They sing Hosana! Hosana! Loudly, as if they were really a part of the celebrations when Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey.

The adults on the other hand, they try to quiet and calm down the children. The adults hold their branches at a modest level, not making a big deal about the whole situation. They are dignified and reverent. That's what church is all about, right?

They say that I can move the mountains
And send them falling to the sea
They say that I can walk on water
If I would follow and believe
With Faith Like a Child
"Like a Child", Jars of Clay

Maybe there is something we can learn from these children. Maybe we shouldn't be so dignified by holding our palm branches at our side. Maybe we should dance and sing and shout and wave or palms!

The he said, "I assure you, unless you turn from your sins and become as little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven. Therefore, anyone who becomes as humble as this little child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven."
Matthew 18:3-4

Friday, April 07, 2006

Please Stay tuned!

Wow guys! Thanks for all the comments! Unfortunately, due to technical difficulties, there will be no more Video Bogging Week Vlogs ! But eventually more videos will ago up! So Stay tuned! Exams starting soon!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

MtA's Last Class Bash

Watch on Windows Media

Technorati Tag: .

Okay, it is SLIGHTLY late, I'll admit! It's been a fairly busy day, and I didn't even go out tonight with my roommates! I did spend time with them at the house until about 11:00pm though, and then got to editing this thing. It's a little long, but bite me! :) I like it!

Plus, she's a little dangerous today. I actually took the camera out and did something different than the talking head routine (which was also dangerous if only for the fact that I had never vlogged before!) So, here is vlog attempt two! Thank you for everyone who commented on attempt one! It really encouraged me to do this again! And I am kind of enjoying it!

For those who don't understand why I am trying to be dangerous, it is the theme of this year's Video Blogging Week; the challenge which challenged me to vlog in the first place!

Also, check out this REALLY GREAT VLOG!!!

Tuesday, April 04, 2006


Sunday night, a night which was spent writing an exam while giving up my chance to go to the Junos, also was an opportunity for me to contemplate the act of writing. My philosophy prof gave us a "take home" exam which was to be completed and passed in online, and it required writing three essays. When you spend your night saturated in essay writing about philosophy, a mind is bound to wander. And wander mine did.

We had choices on the exam, but the fact of the matter was, no doubt at least fifty percent of the class were writing the same essay question that I was. This was interesting to me, because no doubt, we would all write something different. And then I though that even if I had sat down to write the essays at a different time, it would come out very differently than the essay that I was writing then. And that's what is interesting about writing. With simply 26 letters forming our English language, we form so many different words which in turn form so many different sentences and paragraphs and full works. Post Modernism claims that everything that can be done, has already been done. And maybe everything is a copy of everything else. But what I write, no one else will ever write that. The forming of my words are unlike anyone else's.

Monday, April 03, 2006

The ab-TH-urdity of Vlogging

How is this for a first attempt? I have never ever taken video with my camera before, I have never ever edited video, and I have never ever sat in front of a camera and talked to it for this long (except for one formal interview once for a promotional video someone was doing).

What is the deal with this? I really don't even understand vlogging yet. But you can't be critical until you try, right?

Friday, March 17, 2006

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Directional Confessional

Writing is an interesting tool.

Sometimes I find myself sitting down at a computer, and picking up a story or two which I have begun in the past. Fiction is the only way I know how to enter back into the fairy tale world that helped me escape from all my childhood perils. I could be a princess or a detective or a pioneer or a mermaid. Innocence soon loses its naivete, and it became easier and easier to see through the happily ever afters.

Other times, writing is used to keep up to date through e*mails or blog entries. The more interesting these blurbs are, the better. Hyperbole is used and only certain key points are emphasized. It must be short and sweet, or it will be too long for people to care enough to read. Our internet and television generation have such a dumbed down attention span that it no longer matters what is written, as long as it is interesting and short.

Similar to the e*mail and blog outcomes of writing is the letter. This can be hand written or typed, sent through the snail mail or electronically, and usually an attempt is made to be persuasive. Letters are edited much more carefully than the life updates. Content is closely monitored so that the point comes across, so that a specific side is heard.

Where is the truth? Writing used to be so much more personal to me. Whether it was abstract or simply an outlet, I used to pour out my heart. Maybe this could have been taken as being overly emotional, an emo, angsty teenager searching for the meaning of life. But growing up doesn't seem to equal finding meaning. Does becoming an adult mean finally finding our way after being lost for so long? Everyone still seems to be seeking. That part of us just doesn't seem important anymore. We don't write about it anymore. And instead, we give a damn about how short and sweet and entertaining we are.

I do not know when I became lost. I do not know when I lost the ability to dream and to wish. I do not know when I stopped being a princess with the world at my fingertips. I do not know who I am now. I just see act after act, intermingled between this agonizing search process. I end up exhausted. I stand here, not knowing where to turn next.

To you, I am a fictional tale.
To you, I am a quick and entertaining.
To you, I am a persuasive letter that you read without knowing the author.

To me, I seem to have lost all the words.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006


In response to my blog on The Bachelor, I just want to relate a hardy "I told you so"!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Losing Trust

Last night was the final show of this season's The Bachelor. I must admit, I never watched more reality TV than I have this year. With five girls living in one house, you tend to sit down and watch whatever someone else has on the TV. So this season was my introduction to The Bachelor, and I only watched about two episodes in total (one full episode plus bits and pieces of others).

Last night, bachelor Travis, whose medical career was the only thing going for him, gave a ring to down home, kindergarten teacher cutie, Sarah, while California surfer hottie Moana went home heartbroken and embarrassed after spending weeks in Paris falling in love along with twenty-five other women - to the same man.

Episode six, second to last, Travis takes the three women to the most romantic places around the world and completes each date with an invitation to his hotel bed. After sleeping with three beautiful women, the bachelor complains about how difficult this whole ordeal is.

Although Travis did not officially propose to Sarah, as he gave her the ring on the chain; he is clearly intending for a further relationship. How, after spending weeks competing for the heart of one man, after he has given away so much of himself in such a short period, can she trust him? Around the same time that she first slept with him, so did two other women!

The Bachelor is all about competition and jealousy and heartbreak and a deterioration of trust. Reality TV doesn't just make mulch of entertainment, it makes a mulch of Love too. And we sit, and watch it, and love it.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Keep your hands and feet in the ride at all time

Birthdays are a lot like roller coasters. You have huge expectations each time you step into the car; you want the excitement and the rush that the really big loop-the-loop Roller Coasters offer; you want the speed and the thrills. Expectations are huge.

Birthdays have all those same expectations. No other day do we expect all our cards to line up just right (except perhaps the day of our prom and our wedding). Every other day, we have Murphy's Law and sayings such as "Nobody ever said life is fair" floating around the back of our heads, smudging our outlook; but my birthday is "MY Day". It is all about me, when we celebrate the day I was born, and we eat my favorite kind of cake, we give birthday presents to me, ... Basically, not to mention all our selfishness, on our birthday, we have an innermost desire to feel extremely special by those who are special to us.

But every Roller Coaster is dangerous. There are safety harnesses which must be secure, there are operators who know when to start and stop the machine, there are warnings to keep those people with high blood pressure and weak hearts at bay, there are directions to keep hands and feet and other appendages in the ride at all times.

Birthdays have none of these safety harnesses accompanying them.

My birthday was just over a week ago, on a day which all other people despise! It seems that more people are alone on Valentine's day and the Valentine's-haters despise those who have a Valentine (even if their Valentine is miles away and they're alone too). Valentine's Day offers even higher expectations and attracts even weaker hearts.

I suggest that birthdays come mandatory with safety harnesses, warnings, operators, and directions.

Enjoy the ride!

Monday, February 13, 2006

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Everything is alright.

"I just want to warn you," Alicia told me as we walked to her birthday supper, "that you're going to cry on your birthday." Big tears. Twenty year old tears.

It's all going to be alright. Everything is alright. You're okay. Everything is going to be okay. Either God is a woman and she's talking to me, or the loudspeaker outside of Bridgestreet Cafe was blasting some strange self-help CD. I wonder who listens to that stuff. I wonder if that CD is in someone's stereo playing over and over every night, just so that the listener can be convinced by some electronic device that the world really isn't all that bad.

I wonder what went through each pedestrian's mind as they walked up and down Bridge Street, as the dim glow came from the closed storefront windows; Walking either to and from bars or pizza joints, expecting to drink away some repressed emotion or to eat away drunken heartbreak.

Everything is alright.

Twenty Year Old Tears.

Loudspeakers don't lie.

Friday, January 20, 2006

The Science of Art

Art is Science made clear.
~Jean Cocteau

What is it that made me love science? I obviously had (have) a passion for the subject throughout the end of high school and the beginning of university, to the point where I still really enjoy learning about it. And yet, here I am now, an arts student. When I think back to Fogarty's class, or Beatty's class, or Gallant's class; when I think back to Astrophotography and taking pictures of nebulas and meteors hitting the moon; or Aventis and blended fish guts smelling up an unplugged fridge all summer; when I think back even to Wednesday's Anthropology class on genes and evolution, I am struck by this thrill of excitement! It certainly is not a desire to learn more math equations or name carbon bonds or understand formulas.

No, it was none of those things.

What I love about science is the intricacy of it all. To learn about science is to learn about how everything works together from the very smallest building blocks of our world, to the wonders of our universe!

That's the great thing about it. Instead of pushing the science that I love aside, I have instead embraced it! That is what I fell in love with when I encountered my English and Philosophy classes. Art is taking the natural world, and looking at it in a way that isn't blinded with formulas and equations, but instead looking beyond that and finding beauty. I am not in any way denying our science around us. We are biological entities. But art is what lifts us above our biology. I believe that science unifies us with our humanity, but art attempts to connect us with the divine. Oh, how sublime.

This idea however presents me with a dilemma, one which I find myself at an impasse. If art really has this power to enlighten and evoke contemplation; if beauty is really something above our purely humanistic elements, then experiencing art should be much more of a sacred event than it is now. Instead, because of how easily art can be reproduced, we just glance over it. Anytime a photograph or a poem is added to my blog, I am further endorsing the mind set of our society to merely glance over to figure out what the quick and hard point is.

Maybe there isn't a point. Maybe art has no simple formulas. Maybe art is the language of the gods.