Sunday, January 30, 2005

As usual

Strange week for me - one of those ones where I can't quite pick out the individual days or pieces of the day or anything too specific, it feels too mixed. The ski trip was a wonderful break and chance to blow som steam, but I've been hammered since. Something about this semester's schedule keeps me going non-stop I'm on campus all day, but with weird and useless breaks between all my commitments. I bounce around n more than three classes and a couple other commitments a day, and then it's dark and I'm working and the it's 12 and I sleep. Or should. That's why I can't pull much from my week: there's this horrible rythmi monotony.

Add to that some depressing developments at home and some painful realizations about my life here and it gets oppresive.

I really shouldn't complain, though. That's something I need to work on.

Bio midterm on Tuesday. I've spent much of today trying to study and sometimes I'm marginally successful, but actually I daydream most of the time. I blame it on the GY!BE records. They mess with my head. At 5pm, a picture in my Bio textbook of the surface of Mars shot me into a 2 hour day dream marathon in which I came up with the full plot for an exciting space adventure movie. Including the trailer, which if you ask me is always the funnest part. Then I fell asleep, and Dan woke me up and I related the whole story to him and we agreed it's pretty sweet.

This week I rediscovered Tim Hortons. Tonight, we're ordering Poutine from Mama's.

Friday, January 21, 2005

Freedom and liberty

President Bush is truly steadfast, a model of resolution in the aim of achieving his goal: the total elimination of tyranny and oppression in every corner of the globe, as put forward in his second inaugural speech yesterday. What wonderful news! Apparently, with Bush in office, we can expect:

-Equal rights for women and free elections throughout the Middle East, including countries like Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt
-The ousting of Pervez Musharraf
-Pressure on China to democratize
-No more close relations with oppresive regimes
-Democracy in Iran

What was missing, of course, was the how, when, where, and who. Now, it sounds wonderful to parade our founding values , and few Americans would quarrel with spreading freedom around the globe, but there remains a huge gap between Bush's flighty aspirations and the reality both in D.C. and the rest of the world. In truth, he has managed to contradict much of the last four years of his administration: supporting oppresive regimes in Asia that helped out in Afghanistan, for example. Of course, these ideals are nothing new; Bush has been quite proactive about spreading freedom already. Remember Iraq?

Oh, that's right. Americans are still dying in Iraq. Most of the world still hates us for "spreading our freedom." Why? Because with Bush, spreading freedom means bullets, bombs, death, alienation, inhumanity. If Bush truly means what he says, then the American Armed Forces are going to have a busy four years. And we'd better all buy gas masks.

My favorite commentary, from the Philadelphia Inquirer, reads:

"The cherished democratic ideal of freedom took on a grim cast in President Bush's inaugural address yesterday.

"While the President didn't come right out and threaten more military invasions in far-off lands, it was hard to mistake his combative message to virtually any undemocratic nation on the planet. Embrace liberty, he warned, or face the terrible swift sword of the most powerful democracy on Earth."

There are other ways! There is diplomacy, negotiation. Reducing our reliancy on places like Saudi Arabia and China by reducing our oil intake and manfacturing our own goods, so that we aren't constantly supporting their regimes. Even Reagan could pull it off without sending American troops. In short, helping the oppressed of the world does not need to be a grab-your-gun-in-one-hand-balls-in-the-other-don't-mess-with-texas-or-you-must--hate-freedom demonstration of how much power we have!

In other news, I'm going to Jay Peak this weekend with the official McGill University Sailing Team Skiing Team. Kick ass.

Happy Birthday Kalei!!!!

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

What's that smell?

Ah, Molson Hall. Land of the long green cloud. Where would we be without ou freedoms, eh? That is, until 9 am - 4 pm January the 31st, when parents an high school students plan to wander doe-eyed around our dorm. By the reaction of some people on my floor, you'd think the NHL had been cancelled forever "No pot??" they screamed, and tore about bludgeoning the walls. "At 9 am?? O a Sunday?? Never!" For the rest of us, of course, this means seven hours o relief. For once, the dorm might actually smell like a dorm, instead of Jamaica

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Je ne me souviens pas. No, it's too cold.

Back in the good ol' seceding land of Kay-bec, and I'm thinking about buying a humidifier. Think I sound like an old lady? Fine. You don't know the dryness. My face crackles and crunches like the murderous ice that's everywhere out to get me. Falling on the sidewalk isn't funny here; it's a part of life. Still, falling in the cafeteria or during finals merits a laugh.

Imagine: taking a three hour final, sitting in a gym surrounded by hundreds of other students in silent parallel rows of hunched shoulders. It's 2:30 - half an hour in, the pencils are flying and the static of firing neurons is all that can be heard. Hopes are shattering. Tears appearing. Then... creak, creak, BAM. Some poor soul has just finished short answer, when his desk collapses. Screws, splinters, pencils all scatter. Student lies sideways in a heap of twisted remnants. One thousand heads turn.

Speaking of painful experiences, I'm now taking Calculus 2, Biology 2, Psychology of Cognition, Into to Linguistics, and Italian 2. The first two are prereqs for McGill's cog sci major, I'm afraid. To all you High School seniors reading this (nobody I'm sure), take your AP tests!. If you're going to a school like McGill, it could save you a year of college. No joke.

I know it's been a while since I've posted, but things have been busy. I spent my last three nights in Seattle at Kalei's dorm, and I wish I was still there. I never have so much fun as when I'm with her.

Now, I'm not as much one to post or advertise my politics, but I see people tend to splurg a bit on their sites. A couple things have been on my mind since around New Years:

President Bush's initial response to the Tsunami disaster was a pledge of $35 million dollars, less than the $45 million in aid he pledged towards his own second inaugeration ceremony, and roughly equivalent to the amount spent before breakfast in Iraq. On the other hand, the world as a whole has responded wonderfully to the disaster. If only it would bother to respond with such force to a disaster even more widespread that kills over a hundred thousand people every few weeks: AIDS. The nations of the world can do incredible things when sufficiently motivated. They need to be motivated more often!

That's about it for now.. it's late and I should sleep. More soon!