26 September 2005

Fraternities suck.

It's nice to see my next door neighbours being recognized in the paper. All summer long, I had to listen to the incessant noise and obnoxiousness of the frats clustered around our apartment, especially since there are no less than 3 frats within 50 meters of our place. It makes no difference that we are 14 stories up; we can hear all the noise as the hot weather has necessitated windows being left open. It is beyond me, and pretty much everyone else in the world beside North Americans, as to why students opt to join these associations. I guess creating an exclusive clique is the only way some people feel any sense of self-worth.

(And stop defiling my people's alphabet with your trashy associations, god damn it!)

21 September 2005

To every season, turn, turn, turn...

Holy crap I should start updating more frequently. The past three weeks have been a flurry of activity what with Frosh Week Leadering, classes beginning, my new job starting (which I shall return to shortly) and the whole housing issue, I haven't had the time to sit down and post. I hereby attempt to compensate with a summary of each of these events:

1) Frosh Week: Despite this being my 5th (and last year of university), I have never had the opportunity to be a Frosh Leader until this year. For those of you who have no idea what "Frosh" means, and quite frankly think it is a term for some sort of alcoholic cocktail or skin disorder, it is the "affectionate" term for newly-admitted university students. They could just as easily be called freshers, or froshies, or (can you imagine) new, students. Carrying on, each college at U of T is responsible for organizing some sort of orientation events for the week before school begins so that the kiddies may become more accustomed to the university, and immediately make the (false) association between university and fun which their many, many upcoming years at school will thus disprove. Just kidding. Or am I?

As a Frosh Leader, I was given a group of students to show around the university (and to a lesser extent, the city) and engage with in various 'fun' events, such as foxy boxing, theatre sports and my favourite part, the nighttime boat cruise in Lake Ontario. I had a blast, honestly, because Frosh Week is infinitely better when you are NOT a nervous first year who is desperate to make friends while desperately trying to not look desperate. ..

..I remember my Frosh week, and how nervous I was. As someone who had just flown across the country for school without knowing a single person in the city, let alone the school, I was coming to, I was very anxious about meeting people, which I pulled off as a sort of aloofness, otherwise known as "too-cool-for-school syndrome". Luckily, people saw through this facade and I made a load of friends early on, but not everyone is fortunate to live on campus during their first year. I hope I was able to make some sort of positive impact on my frosh. Lord knows my co-leader didn't have a clue what was happening most of the time. But that's a whole new issue.

2) Beginning o' classes: Indeed, they began yet again. This semester, among other classes, I am taking two 'technical' courses, both Geography-relevant: Introduction to GIS and a Statistics course. I hope to keep on the ball enough that when I do run into trouble with these classes, I have enough time to focus on figuring it out before deadlines. We'll see about this. I will keep you informed of my progress in Stats, bearing in mind that this is the mandatory course I dropped last fall because it sent shivers down my spine. I must successfully complete it this time however, so wish me luck!

3) New job: My position as a Legislative Student Usher at the Legislative Assembly of Ontario began. The job duties aren't exactly rocket science: make sure the rules of the House are enforced in whatever capacity necessary, maintaining acceptable visitor conduct in the galleries, and in general being a servant of the house. This sometimes entails being an abuse-receptacle for the MPPs who think they have transcended humanity and taken on divine form. Hands-down the best part of the job is the cool I.D. badge that only myself, the MPPs and a handful of other support staff have, which grants us access the the chamber floor of Parliament. I have included a photo of it at the beginning of this post. Note the word "Chamber" on my pass, further testament to my awesomness.

4) Housing issues: The most sensitive of the four issues, I would rather not get into the details of this one online. Sufficie it to say that my monthly rent will be much, much higher every month than I ever thought.

14 September 2005

City Councilman Unearths Magical Zoning Amulet

Once again, the Onion has hit paydirt with this article. Given that the profession of 'geographer' does not actually exist, the Onion has constructed a pretty convincing argument for becoming a zoning by-lawist, or 'urban planner' if you will. My favourite part of the article is the pictures. Amulets rule.