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Monthly Archives: October 2006

I have $12.00 in library fines. I forgot that I had 4 books due on Friday. Not too smart, Hamm. And now I have to pay $12.00 before I can take out any more books. But this is not unusual for me. No matter how punctual I am in every other aspect of my life, I can never return my library books on time. I wish I knew why. I’d gladly fix it and keep my $12.00.

I was planning on working on my essay this weekend, but that didn’t really happen. My Auntie Hilda and Uncle Gerry were here from Edmonton, so that meant much visiting while playing Scrabble and harassing them about their non-playoff-bound Eskimos. They’re actually my great-aunt and great-uncle, but who cares? So, they helped me write off Saturday.

Yesterday Sadie woke me up at 7:00 am. She does this every weekend. Why my parents don’t close the door to the upstairs I will never know. Or maybe I should do it before I go to bed since it’s always after they’re tucked in for the night. So, I was up early, read a few articles, visited with my Dad for quite awhile and then had a nap. Then I woke up, had lunch and decided I’d better head back to the city. I promised myself I would work very hard when I got home because I had a lot to do. Ha.

I did something quite counterproductive when I bought my new computer. I put The Sims on it. My excuse was that I had these games that I couldn’t use on my computer because it would constantly freeze just try to load it, and I couldn’t waste them any longer. Instead, they’re wasting my time. It’s sad, really, living vicariously through computer-generated people that you control. Maybe it says something about the lack of control I feel I have in my life. It’s a theory with possibilities…

I put much thought and analysis into my tutorial readings for today. And we didn’t go over them. Instead, we spent 45 minutes going over “What is a journal article? Where do you find it? Footnotes should be numbered sequentially. You should not have sources in your bibliography that are not cited in your essay. Don’t double space your footnotes and put them in 12-point font (who DOES that?).” And on, and on, and on… In essence, I was bored for 45 minutes. I could have done some work. I work much better in the morning. I always get a lot done at school in-between classes.

And now I’m home. Procrastinating. Actually, I e-mailed my Women and Gender Studies essay proposal to my professor about 15 minutes ago, and I have a 2 sentences for my globalization paper that is due on Thursday. Last night I decided to change my topic. Lucky for me I can use my textbooks as a source, which defeats the purpose of doing a research paper, but that’s the professor’s problem.

Well, I should get back to work here. I’ll put on some music and see where this paper of mine goes. I’ve been listening to a lot of classical vocal music lately. Renee Fleming particularly, though I pulled out my Anne Sofie von Otter CD yesterday. She’s brilliant. Her interpretations of Alban Berg’s “Sieben fruhe Lieder” (Seven Early/Easy? Songs) are the best I’ve ever heard. I also downloaded a CD by Lori McKenna. She’s alternative country, I’d say. I would never have heard of her had she not been on Oprah with Faith Hill, but she’s an amazing songwriter who says more in a couple of words than I probably every will. I love the lyric: “And you could burn down this town if they made matches from fear.” What an incredible metaphor/image. Her voice isn’t pretty; it’s raw and has substance. I like it.

Okay, enough procrastinating. Back to work. But I’m kind of hungry. Maybe I’ll make supper first…

Some people have asked me why I bother having a blog. They wonder why someone would want to share their feelings with the rest of the world. I can’t give you one exact reason why. There are many. One is that it makes communication more open. It’s much easier to keep up with the lives of people who have a blog. Personally, I loved hearing about the ins and outs of someone’s life; it makes them feel closer even if they’re far away. Another reason I keep a blog is as a form of dialogue with friends and family. I don’t get to have nearly the amount of quality conversation I used to have when I lived in dorm. There were always people around when you felt like talking. Always people to argue with, compete with – you know me. A third reason I blog is (a least for me) is to vent. I always have a million thoughts floating around, and not wanting to bother anymore with them, I can type them out, send them off into cyberspace and I felt as if I’ve talked to someone. The bonus for you guys is that you can choose whether or not you want to read them.

But I’ve discovered a new medium for discourse. It’s called ‘tutorial’.

I admit that I hated tutorials at the beginning of the year. I thought they were useless and filled with people who sit staring at their books, hoping someone will talk to make the 45 minutes go faster. I didn’t want to say anything for a) fear of disagreement with my opinions (I sometimes don’t deal well with criticism) and b) I didn’t want to become the loudmouth girl who is self-righteous, strongly opinionated and won’t shut up. You know those types of people.

Anyways, I have two tutorials. One on Monday and one on Wednesday. The Monday tutorial is, well, it’s not exactly lively. As we’re doing a lot of studying about the Catholic Church’s history, people seem to be quite anti-church and philosophical. They also don’t seem that tolerant or open-minded, either. Everyone seems easily offended.

Now my Wednesday tutorial – what a difference. Our TA is laid back, we’re allowed to jump all over each other’s opinions and nobody cares. When we leave the room, nobody cares. It’s like a show. You come off the stage and leave your character there. It’s fun. Particularly when I make up far-fetched hypothetical situations such as Regina taking over Saskatoon and telling Saskatoonians they have to leave within a year, or they’ll be deported and dispersed to various Regina territories (basically anywhere south of Regina). There was more laughter about the actualities of this than the point I was trying to make, but that’s okay. I like to be the class clown, too, sometimes.

And on that note, it’s time to go and do something productive. I’m worn out from the non-stop studying and essay writing from the past few days. I’ll give myself this evening to relax and then it’s back to work. One more midterm and 4 essays to go. Oh, the joys of being a humanities major. Thank goodness for tutorials…

It’s been an interesting 72 hours full of essay writing, power outages, snow and extracurricular bus trips. Yes, winter is slowly digging its claws in on us.

Sunday night the power went out around 11:00 pm. I was heading to bed anyways, so it didn’t really matter, but I called my sister Michelle to see if their power was on. I tried their phone: no answer. So I tried Michelle’s cell phone. And I woke her up. Poor kid. She was clearly half asleep, trying to decipher what I was saying in her grogginess. Before I hung up, I told her that maybe she should turn her cell phone off if she doesn’t want people calling her at 11:30 at night. Goodness knows I don’t leave mine on.

According to my blinking alarm clock, the power was only out for an hour and a half. Not long at all. Before I went to bed, I went upstairs to look out the door and saw the snow. And I felt right at home. It was beautiful to see it gently falling on the street. I became nostalgic, but I certainly wasn’t yesterday morning.

I dressed for the cold and went to meet the bus, since I wasn’t going to be driving on the skating rink that was my street. I’ve hardly driven on snow and ice in the past 2 years – I’m not about to start now. The problem was I couldn’t get out my screen door. I was iced in. After a lot of pushing it shoving, it finally gave in and I trotted out to the bus stop. The next adventure was the drive to school. What should have been a 5 minute trip turned into a half hour. The bus skidded a couple of times and the cars around us only moved by inches. I don’t like buses to being with and swore I’d never ride another one again after having lived on them in Vancouver. But we finally made it to school, but hardly anyone else did, as my 8:30 class was quite empty.

On the way back from school, I took the wrong bus. I took the wrong bus in Saskatoon. I never got lost once in Vancouver, never, ever stepped on the wrong bus. My first bus experience in Saskatoon: I get lost. Well, I wasn’t really lost. I knew exactly where I was. I was downtown rather when I was supposed to be on the other side of the river. A slight problem. Luckily the bus crossed back over and I promptly got off, and walked 15 blocks in the wind and sleet. Not fun. When I take the bus next time, I won’t take the one that stops in front of Place Riell. Bad idea.

My best mistake, and costliest, though, occured on Friday and Saturday. I began writing my essay for my political studies class when on Saturday night, as I was falling asleep, I realized my essay had nothing to do with the very wide open issue of democracy. My essay was on American foreign policy. Oops. I quickly got out of bed, scratched a few ideas down as to how I might be able to salvage my essay, but in the morning I realized it was useless. Nine pages. Wasted. Well, not completely wasted. I’m taking an American foreign policy class next semester, so I’ll just save my essay until then. But I had to start all over again. My “real” political studies essay, as I called it, deal with the state of democracy in America since 9/11. I have no idea if it’s any good or not. I am terrified that I have lost the ability to write anything coherent along with the capacity to think critically.

And on that note, my handsome 8:30 professor is here and class is about to begin. Back to Canadian history…

Last night I was working on my political science essay at my parents’ house when our puppy Sadie came into the kitchen. She looked at me with her big brown eyes, widly wagging her tail, pleading for me to give her a piece of the chocolate chip cookie I was eating. I looked at her tail, and commented,

“You know, I’d like a tail. That way people would know when I was happy and I could use it to smack them when I’m not.”

My Dad happened to overhear my pronouncement and remarked, “Somebody’s irrational in this house.”

I burst out laughing. My Dad isn’t one of many words sometimes (other times he won’t shutup), and I’d never heard him use the word “irrational” before. And maybe it was the conversation we had a supper where I pointedly asked him if he was a Communist (I was just trying to get a rise out him – and it worked) because of his complaining about “corporate big boys”, as he termed them, that made the comment even more hilarious, but whatever it was, it was priceless.

It was like the time I was watching TV with Orest and Heather, and I was my usual show-woman self, spitting out jokes and smartcracks left, right and center. All of a sudden Orest says, “Do you feel compelled to entertain?” Of course Heather and I died laughing. We laughed because it’s true. Poor Orest, though. His comment wasn’t based on my behavior but a commercial that had a street busker. I’ve never let him live it down, though…

Well, I should get back to my essay. I’m on page 4 and it’s due on Wednesday. I can’t believe these “working ahead of schedule” activities I’ve been joining in. It must be a gene that is only showing its dominance now. I don’t get it, but I’ll take it…

I, Nicole Lindsey Kim Hamm, am the recipient of a miracle. Yes, a miracle. It occured last night around 10:00 pm and didn’t end until 6:10 am this morning. The miracle? I slept. All night. Like a baby.

I’m not joking. God really did create a miracle, and maybe it’s because I’m in a place where I feel content that I am terming it that way. But it has to be. I could not stop coughing until late last night. And then, all of a sudden – I stopped.

It took my about 15 minutes to realize what was happening, and then I got ready for bed as fast as I ever have. I was asleep in 5 minutes, and woke up this morning. I can’t say I felt “refreshed”, because I promptly began coughing again and wanted to fall asleep during my first class, but I felt like I could function my way through the midterm. And I did.

Now, some people would say it’s the Neocitran (why didn’t anybody tell me that stuff tastes so awful!) and the Benilyn Nighttime Cough medicine (which was just…gross…) that I took, but I think it’s a miracle.

I had been worrying all day about whether I was going to sleep, and studying took much longer than normal because my brain was only on half-speed. So I just finally prayed, “God, please let me sleep tonight!” And I did.

Coincidence? The result for medicine? Sure. But I prefer to look at it as God giving me a break.

“Something’s gotta give…”

There isn’t much I hate more than being sick. In fact, I can’t think of anything I hate more. That’s pretty surprising for me.

After going to sleep late because I was going, and waking up in the middle of the night because I was coughing, I got up late this morning (8:30 late – that’s nothing) and decided I should try to school. A half hour later, smelling like Vicks, coughing ’til my sides hurtm sniffling, looking in the mirror at my haggard reflection and feeling like I got hit by a bus (I might be exaggerating a tiny bit…) I realized my effort to go to class were futile. It was time to take a day off.

The thing is, I’m going to have to get dressed and go to Walmart sometime today to get some tea, some cough candies, etc., and I don’t want to. I just want to go to bed and sleep for a week. But I can’t. Midterm tomorrow. Luckily I’ve actually been studying for a couple of days and am in good shape, so I won’t stress out too much today.

I am not a good patient when I am sick, though. I do two contradicting things. I a) complain and exaggerate my symptoms as if my death was near, but b) refuse to lay down and stay still to heal, working until I basically have to stay home due to exhaustion. So, I speak of my impending death while working like a madwoman. Yeah. I don’t get it either.

But I will live. This is the worst I’ve been sick for quite a while, so I’m probably due. And when I get sick, I’m usually down and out for weeks, including recovery. Lucky for me, schoolwork doesn’t always involve me actually having to go to school, and when it does, I’m hardly there. So I’ll sit here and study like a madwoman, all the time bemoaning my fate and when I’m better I’ll act as if it was nothing.

Oh, help me…

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