Sunday, October 25, 2009

Oh ... my eyes ... my burning eyes

What's that light-bulb moment you get when you realize you've been spending too much time on the Web?

I got mine yesterday.

Mindlessly playing game after game after game of Bejeweled Blitz on Facebook, I got the following air message:

It was like Facebook was yelling at me, 'Hey, loosah, put the laptop down!' And then I looked over at my dog, who was patiently waiting for his walk, and his eyes seemed to say the same thing.


Later in the night, though, I Stumbled upon a blog detailing five eye exercises to improve your vision.

Like the Facebook message that reminds me to look away from the screen now and again and focus my eyes on a distant object, Steve Aitchison wants us to keep our eyes healthy.

The U.K. blogger says there has been a 'marked increase in the number of people who wear glasses and contact lenses' over the past 10-15 years.

Count me as one of them. And that was before I would spend my working hours and off hours pounding away on a computer. I started wearing glasses when I reached university.

It was really surprising last year, though, when my optometrist said, 'you have the eyes of a 60-year-old' and I had to spend more than $500 on a pair of special lenses for my glasses.

First, I have astigmatism, so my eyes tire quickly. And hours on the computer without looking at other stuff doesn't help.

Next, I'm near-sighted.

And finally, I have cataracts in my left eye, likely the result of the concussions which have caused me to stop playing hockey.

But what's a girl to do when her job revolves around a computer? And when she loves to use the fool thing to stay in touch with family and friends or while away the hours at home?

Outside of getting a real life - haha - I guess I'll have a run at Steve Aitchison's eye exercises and see if they can help.

After all, these sound a lot easier than my squats and deadlifts!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Thinking criminally

Aaron Hotchner and Joe Rossi come up with the greatest quotes to end an episode of Criminal Minds.

This one stuck with me:

It doesn't matter who my father was; it matters who I remember he was.
--Anne Sexton

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

As low as haute couture can go

This Stumbling hobby can get pretty depressing sometimes.

I'm even steering away from Fetish Tots, kinky couture for little people. The fucked-upedness of this link boggles the mind.

But tonight, I land on a Racked page featuring a snippet about Barbie. Now we all know Barbie, the impossibly curvy gal-pal doll from our childhood.

At the height of my Barbie fascination (around the time she was making out with G.I. Joe, not Malibu Ken), she teetered on her tippy-toes, had impossibly long legs that spread perpendicular to her hips and had amazing large, perky bosoms.

Today, I learned Barbie has cankles. Yup, Christian Louboutin - yes, of the 'oh my Jesus, you have a pair of Louboutin shoes' shoes - has decided her ankles are too fat.

And thus, he's redesigning her feet and ankles to suit the Barbie design series he's about to launch.

But then, like a lost ship at sea searching for a lighthouse, I hit that StumbleUpon logo in the upper left corner of my Firefox browser.

Up pops It lets me 'Read less, learn more.'

And the headline screams: German women's mag bans models.

Henceforth, Brigitte, the most popular women's magazine in Germany, will use only 'real' women for its photo spreads.

Its editor, Andreas Lebert, is 'fed up' with retouching pictures of underweight models who bear no resemblance to readers.

"For years, we've had to use Photoshop to fatten girls up," he said. "This is disturbing and perverse. Models weigh around 23 per cent less than normal women. The whole model industry is anorexic."

This comes months after sending an email to Oxygen, a Canadian fitness magazine, ranting about its use of obviously Photoshopped pictures in a photo spread on weight lifting.

Yes, Photoshopping fitness models. They're already in peak condition but let's just take an inch or two off the hips, scale off the inside of her thighs and, ooooh, that chicken wing is a little flappy.

With no reply from its editorial staff, I pledged to never buy another edition.

But hope shines on the horizon. Could Brigitte start a trend?

Doubtful. There's a whole cultural obsession with thinness on this side of the puddle. And battling it is a heavy, heavy woolen cloak for anyone to bear on his shoulders.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Taking risks

Answer the question:

Professionally? I would quit my job and start a freelance writing business.

Personally? I would jump headlong into a fiery romance and actually trust somebody.


Monday, October 5, 2009

A case for whiplash

When I was 14, I was going to grow up and marry Nikki Sixx.

He was my world, my god, my light ... ah, the sweet throbbing of the bass against my ear drums ... She's got looks that kill, ba bum, she's got looks that kill ...

Never mind the grammatical redundancy of 'she's got.'

But I digress ...

Tonight, I Stumbled Upon the Uncyclopedia's wiki for heavy metal, the '666th element of the periodic table of alchemic mixology.'

There's even an isotope dedicated to my favourite band:

Motley Crueium
An element found in hair, typically in Girls, Girls, Girls. First discovered in during the Generation 'Swine', this element is used in heart surgery, usually to provide some kind of 'kickstart'. Dr. Feelgood has been a strong supporter of this element, repeatedly stating "You're All I Need". Apart from surgery, this can also be used as a recreational drug, making the subject feel numb, but at the same time, somehow, 'Welcome' to the Numb. Typically smoked in a masculine environment, overdoses can lead to subjects dying, only to come back to life later. While dead, subjects will Shout at the Devil. Traces of this element found on Planet Boom, as recounted in Heroin Diaries. IF used past its prime however, it will cause weight gain and Hepatitis. One can obtain this in large amounts by praying to the Saints of Los Angeles. Famously used by the hottest models, as this causes them to have the looks that kills. Also found in suprisingly huge amounts in the wild side. Despite its look Good qualities it can't make people fall in Love as it is Too Fast for Love. Heavy users will wake up in a Theatre of Pain with a New Tattoo that can only be removed by Dr. Feelgood.

Oh how I laughed.

And remembered how my mother would snarl in the direction of my Motley Crue posters, mocking their hair and makeup.

She'd laugh when my neck was sore from excessive head banging.

She'd throw out the jeans I had ripped up so I could look like Lita Ford.

She'd yell 'turn that shit down' when I let the boom box on RATT get a little too close to 10 (or could that have been 11?).

The page tracks from Black Sabbath to Avenged Sevenfold, moving from metal's origins to today's industrial and thrash bangers.

It's a terrific tongue-in-cheek review of the most misunderstood genres of music.

And although my mother thought I would one day come to my senses, I remain a thrasher at heart.

Owning my life

The panic attacks aren't near as frequent as they were two weeks ago.

I haven't been gripped by a single nightmare.

Tomorrow is Session 2 of counselling at Calgary Communities Against Sexual Abuse.

I wasn't too thrilled with my counsellor but I'm willing to give us time to warm up to each other. Similar to my first shrink, she's pretty prim and her engagement with me amounted to repeating much of what I had said.

I seem to respond better to someone who will work through the situation with me, guide me, talk to me and give me ideas about which I should think.

Give me a book to read, not 'home work.'

In any case, I did come to a conclusion on my own. My previous therapist, L., helped me realize I make too many decisions based on emotion, instead of rational logic.

Ah, I thought, that must be why one morning I woke and thought, 'I want to buy a truck.' So guess what I did that day? Yup, I bought my truck.

There was no systematic thinking on whether I could afford it, whether the upkeep would be more than my Mustang. Nothing ...

Two weeks ago, I talked my way through the why.

I had one super fantastic important decision taken away from me 20 years ago. After all, few things are more precious to a young girl than her virginity.

I wasn't given a chance to make that decision.

So since then, I've been making rash, impulsive decisions . . . based not on logic, but on a desire - nay, a need - to own that decision, to make it mine.

To not let anyone take that decision away from me.

But as I grow up now, I have to realize that owning my decisions has to mean weighing each incident thoughtfully and strategically, keeping in mind cause and effect every step of the way.

I can still take risks.

I just have to plan for results instead of wait for fallout.