beboots: (aang says yay)
 GUYS GUYS GUYS CHECK OUT THIS VIDEO: Peter Jackson Posts First Video from the Set of The Hobbit. It's ten minutes long... and I was smiling and and full of glee for that entire ten minutes. My face hurts I'm so happy. \o/

I mean, we've all been hearing rumours about the filming of The Hobbit, ever since Return of the King finally came out on DVD, you know? And I felt that we'd kind of been strung along, will they or won't they, and I know I'd heard that they were finally moving forward, but I happened to stumble across someone linking this in their twitter feed a little while ago and it just makes me so, SO happy. 

I read The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings when I was like ten. I was told I had to read the latter before dad would take me to see the Fellowship of the Ring. I did. I didn't understand all of it at that age (for the first three chapters or so I thought that "Merry" was "Mary" - a girl - and was disappointed when I found out s/he wasn't), but it still remains one of my favourite book series ever. 

I have vague memories of my nine-year-old self reading The Hobbit to my younger brother in bed. It's an amazing story that I think will never grow old. 
 
I'm definitely going to reread the ENTIRE series this summer, post haste, as soon as I finish exams. Perhaps I will even be doing so in Spain, if I can find a nice, small and compact paperback version (likely at a secondhand bookstore).

I'm also SUPER happy that Martin Freeman is going to be playing Bilbo Baggins. I think he will be absolutely perfect in the role, especially as he will be continually played off of the dwarves. Check out this video to see why he has the perfect facial expression for dealing with recalcitrant dwarves. 
 
 
I suspect Martin Freeman will also have had plenty of practice as an actor dealing with other actors being eccentric to his practicality, as seen in the BBC's Sherlock, which is ALSO amazing. 
 
Anyway, in conclusion... SUPER EXCITED, GUYS. You can bet I'm going to be waiting for these video blogs religiously. The Hobbit...! <3 <3 <3
beboots: (Canada "discovery" history)
 HEY GUYS, I FEEL LIKE WRITING THIS ENTIRE POST IN CAPSLOCKS BUT THAT WOULD BE ANNOYING. So I won't. But imagine a capslock mood. 

CUE JAUNTY, UPLIFTING, CELEBRATORY MUSIC

(I would totally use the serious Civil War man icon that I have for this post, because it's the most historically appropriate, but it doesn't convey the sense of glee I feel at the moment. Imagine me as the man on the right, Jacques Cartier, at least in expression and mood.)

I just got back from Staples (AKA the office supply store) and I came back with three printed copies of the final copy of my thesis: the one I'm going to hand in for my final grade. 

It's done. It's sitting in a box downstairs, by the door, so I can bring it to school on Monday when I return a huge stack of books to the library. I had to fiddle with the formatting this morning (you have to expand the left hand margin to one and a half inches instead of just one because they're going to bind them into BOOKS), but after looking over my conclusion one final time, changing two or three words... I declared it completely and absolutely finished. 

You can make tiny little nit-picky edits forever, you know? I could probably still be making changes in a month's time, if I wanted, adding in one more source, chasing down one more salient example... but I've made myself stop. It's as good as it's going to get. And it's finished. \o/ \o/ \o/

Here my honour's thesis is, by the numbers... 

Title: Too Easily Blamed: American Civil War Surgery and Medical Care in Context

Pagecount (main body): 51

Pagecount with bibliography, title page and table of contents: 59

Number of sections: 12

Wordcount: 14,789

Wordcount (including textboxes and footnotes): 17,789

Character count: 96,768

Character count (with spaces): 114,537 (THINK ABOUT HOW MANY KEYSTROKES THAT IS FOR A SECOND, NOT INCLUDING EDITING)

Number of items on bibliography: 15 primary, 37 secondary, 52 total

Number of footnotes: 215 (many of which cite more than one source)

Number of hours put into this project: COUNTLESS.
beboots: (aang says yay)
 Hey guys!

So I checked my e-mail this morning, and I found THIS in my inbox: 
Hello,
Congratulation!
Your application for a position as a Teaching English Assistant in France for the year 2011/2012 has been approved.
Your application will be forwarded to the Academy (school board) of ROUEN for an high school level which is a 7 months contract.
Before giving you the next procedures regarding your visa, could you please confirm that you are accepting this position ?
Looking forward to hearing from you,
Regards,

Félicitation!
Votre candidature pour un poste d’assistant de langue anglaise en France a été retenue pour l’année 2011/2012.
Votre dossier sera proposé à l’académie de ROUEN pour une affectation au niveau secondaire d’une durée de 7 mois.
Avant de vous donner plus d'informations concernant les démarches à faire pour votre visa, je souhaiterais que vous me confirmiez que vous acceptez bien ce poste.
Dans l'attente de votre réponse,
Cordialement,
[NAME OF THE WONDERFUL LADY AT THE FRENCH EMBASSY IN OTTAWA]

All of those tears and stress have finally paid off! I'm so happy I didn't just give up when I found out my application was late! <3 <3 <3 Now I have to apply for a working Visa, do research about the city, find a place to live... BUT I HAVE A JOB! It begins October 1st, so I'll probably leave for France in the first week or so of September... <3 <3 <3 I am super excited! :D 
beboots: (Default)
 Hey guys! If you've ever been to Spain before (or, as I know some of you, have lived/are living there right now), I was wondering if I could pick your brains for suggestions. 

You see... I may be going to Spain for a few weeks with my family. 

My mother has been intending on taking me and my (twin) sister on a celebratory vacation after we graduate this spring. We've been throwing around several ideas, and a little while back mum came up with one that seems to be sticking: Spain. 

My mother's father and his wife (whom he ran away with when he abandoned my mum's mum... when my mother was taking her last week of exams before university, so, uh, drama there) live there. They're British, but they apparently live in this small city on the Mediterranean that is composed of roughly 60% older British people. I'm told it's like England's Florida, but, well, more Spanish. ;) Anyway, mum wants to visit Granddad and Claire, mostly because Granddad now has cancer and me and my siblings haven't seen him since we were five. He's doing all right, but if we don't visit now we may never get to. 

So at the moment the plan is to visit Granddad & Claire for a few days, then... head off elsewhere for two weeks or so. The thing is, none of us have really ever been to Spain before. It was never ridiculously high on my "must visit" places in Europe, although I'd always figured I'd make my way there eventually. We may yet spend a week in Spain then fly over to Italy, but I know that there are definitely lots of attractions and awesome historic things in Spain. 

So I pose the question to you, friends list: where would you recommend going? What is awesome in Spain? I probably want to go to Granada because of the interesting Moorish history it has, but... I actually don't know much about Spanish history beyond the Reconquista and its colonial history. Also, wars with France. Some of which involved Hapsburgs. 

(Also, I need to brush off my tiny amount of Spanish gained in a single semester during grade ten... like nearly seven years ago? Holy crap I'm getting older...)

P.S.: I don't think that this post came out as enthusiastic as I'd like it to be. I'm actually thrilled to be going back to Europe! I'm just ridiculously tired right now. Also, I think I need to work up even more enthusiasm by doing research into travel plans. 
beboots: (Canada "discovery" history)
 I'm not sure if I mentioned it anywhere yet - I'm sure if I did I didn't talk about it in detail - but on Wednesday I got to be a part of the short film they're making at Fort Edmonton. <3 

For some information on the Capitol Theatre project, see here. Long story short: they're building a new theatre on 1920s street at the living history museum, right next to the Hotel Selkirk (which is a functioning hotel, by the way, with gorgeous rooms and delicious food). It's a super-exciting project! They'll be able to use it as a theatre space for dramatic productions, if they want, but during regular hours they'll be able to show 1920s silent films... plus some 1930s Talkies. :) (I put my vote in for "Freaks" and Bela Lugosi's "Dracula".)

They're also making an original film, entitled "Northern Light" or something like that, the plot of which essentially boils down to "10,000 years of Edmonton's history in 10 minutes". Cut for long-winded explanation of awesomeness, plus photographs. )


(Note: those things in the foreground aren't tombstones covered in snow. They are in fact ice walls built for the snowball fight competition being held there pretty soon. Can you think of a cooler setting for a snowball fight? :D )


Some of the beaded belts laid out on the table in Clerk's Quarters, ready to be chosen. Adele, the costumer, brought out our bag of "bling", as we call it: belts and chokers and so on so we could deck ourselves out. We laid them out quite nicely and several of us spent time photographing them. For more photographs of these belts (as well as more shots of the Fort in wintertime), see this album here

Aaand... that's all she wrote!
beboots: (Default)
(Thank goodness for autosaved draft - I almost lost fifteen minutes of typing!)

Happy Hallowe'en everyone! :D I'm reporting back on Spooktacular... For those of you just tuning in/who don't live in Edmonton, this is the Hallowe'en event run by the City of Edmonton at Fort Edmonton Park, that living history museum which is so awesome. It's closed for the regular historical interpretation season, and the history knob is turned down (a lot), but it's an amazing setting for creepy happenings for two nights towards the end of October. 1920s street and 1905 street are kid friendly; spooky children's crafts, bobbing for apples, LOTS of candy being given out, face painting, Thriller dancers (the midterm project for a dance class from the University of Alberta), etc. 

Cut for zombie action and descriptions of zombie lurching & groaning techniques... )


Also, the zombies amongst us should shop here

Happy Hallowe'en everyone! :D
beboots: (Civil war)
Come autumn, Fort Edmonton Park does this awesome two-night Hallowe'en event called Spooktacular. Last year I volunteered for logistics - I walked around with a few others in shiny reflective vests with radios, shining a flashlight into the eyes of anybody suspected of smoking pot/drinking/doing something else they shouldn't have. We're there to give out information and act as security. Somebody three years ago apparently broke an ankle trying to sneak into the park along the service road by climbing over the chain-link fence, and it was someone in my position that found him. It was fun. 

But THIS year, I'm volunteering to be one of the actors on the scary street: 1885 street is PG-13. Apparently they used to do the Fort of Fear, which was TERRIFYING (I mean, you hardly have to dress it up in the dark; it's pretty scary as-is). For various safety and legal reasons, we can't do it anymore, but that means that 1885 street, with it's reproduction jail, really old houses, skeletal trees, and empty wagons gets to be the setting for our nights of mayhem.

This year, the theme is zombies. I'm a rover; this means that I'm one of the zombie hoard not assigned to scenarios within the buildings themselves, mostly for atmosphere and to terrify people wandering around/waiting in lines. 

We had our dress rehearsal yesterday, which went pretty well overall! Volunteers from the other streets came by to test us out, which was fun... and good practice. It took me like fifteen minutes to learn to keep a straight face properly when someone else is staring at you or laughing or whatever. I've learned to give out a moan whenever I feel the urge to laugh. 

Essentially, my "at rest" pose involves me with my upper torso leaning backwards almost enough to make it uncomfortable, with my head to the side, eyes wide and staring. I can do a good wide-eyed face. One of the two lovely volunteer girls who do the makeup gave me a giant slice wound across my face, between my eyes going onto my left cheek. We were thinking: ax to the face. But not enough so that I stayed down! ;) Anyway, if you catch my attention I don't follow you with my eyes or face, but with my torso, moving unnaturally. I will lurch towards you, stop and stare, lurch some more if you catch my attention... I sometimes sneak up on people watching other programs, stand behind them, stare for five or ten seconds, then groan. 

We have to be careful to shuffle slowly, so people can get away; we can't technically touch visitors, and it's kind of awkward if you catch them because you can't disembowel and eat them. Seriously, super awkward. ;) One of the guys gets around it by sniffing anyone he's caught, making a disgusted face, and shuffling off. 

I need to learn to blink more than I do (wide, glassy-eyed staring freaks people out a LOT) because I actually lost a contact when my eyes dried out too much and I blinked. I had to grab it off of the dirty ground, shuffle off behind a building, and dash to the washroom to clean it off and put it back in. I kind of needed my peripheral vision to drive home. >_> 

But still! It's been super fun! I will have more details (and possibly photographs) of the two actual nights, Friday and Saturday. If anybody's in the Edmonton area and wants to attend (and you totally should!) you can get tickets through Ticketmaster... although they're selling out fast! :D

Now, if only the thin layer of snow on the ground would melt in time... I've compensated by literally wearing five layers of turtlenecks and sweaters under my dress shirt and four skirts plus yoga pants (which doubles up as extra padding against zombie hunters), but it won't be a comfortable night if it's like -10C... :P
beboots: (Default)
"It is written" - Slumdog Millionaire

Okay, so maybe this is a matter of "don't count your chickens before they've hatched", but mum called me over to the answering machine when she got home, and there was a message there for me... from the Fort Edmonton Human Resources! :D I have an interview! For the job I've been wanting for two years!

I may still bomb the interview, but... I have a shot at this! :D I am immensely excited about all of this. :)

Also, just for interest's sake... here's more hetalia fanart that I've uncovered:
The countries talk about their most talented authors: http://chira-chira.deviantart.com/art/hetalia-the-best-writer-104122833
Random sketches including the Cold War from Canada's point of view: http://chira-chira.deviantart.com/art/hetalia-sketches-102687393
And my favourite, Canada asking the UK for permission to be a country: http://chira-chira.deviantart.com/art/hetalia-Canada-s-Favor-104122999

Also, this one: http://angusmcleod.deviantart.com/art/World-War-Two-Simple-Version-73625561 It isn't Hetalia, but it's effing hilarious. Essentially, it's World War Two, but... yeah. It's as funny as war is ever going to get, man.

And in conclusion: HUZZAH and also YAY! :D
beboots: (Default)
(quote by Cleolinda, whose parodies are awesome...)

Nanowrimo update: Okay, so I either write really hardcore and go way beyond my novel's wordcount goal each day, or write next to nothing. D: It's really bad. Perhaps it's because I have lots of homework and midterms and now exams to do...? D: 'Tis a flimsy excuse, is it not? But I think that I'm still on track to hit 50k by November 31st... with any luck, anyway. Come to me, my muses! D:

Also, I'm very glad that Cassidy agreed to be my wordcount rival this year. She has kept me afloat. You rock, my dear! :D

Also, I saw Twilight on Friday night. :3 I still maintain my position that the series is far too popular for it's apparent quality, but I admit that I enjoyed the movie. l felt that it was a good adaption, and I actually found myself liking characters that I was neutral to before - I actually like Bella now! That, and her father, Charlie. That scene directly prior to where Bella brought in Edward to introduce himself formally... the click of the shotgun, then "Bring him in"... XD Also, even though Jasper had only a very small role... he was awesome. Just his... pained look. XD I also didn't mind Emmett or Rosalie, whom I actually actively disliked in the books, but were pretty cool in the movie. Plus, everyone, and especially Carisle, was gorgeous. Seriously. Including the bad guys, who were actively hot. Also, Jacob was a sweetie. :) I don't want him to turn into an asshole as in the books! ;_;

Also, if you're following what I'm saying, read these parodies!  http://cleolinda.livejournal.com/630150.html You will be very amused, I assure you. :3

On another matter... you know that meteor that was seen a few days ago over Alberta and Saskatchewan? I witnessed it. It was pretty darn cool, I've got to say, although it kind of made me panick at the time.  I was driving to the bus station in the evening (I was going to meet some friends in downtown Edmonton, and it's easier to do park'n'ride than try to do transfers), and I was about to turn left when I saw this massive bright light in the distance, kind of angling downwards to the right. It looked really, really close, and I actually thought that something was landing in the field to the right of the road (I've since learned that it was probably much further away). But it was like in flames... you know those shots of rockets taking off, with the flames and smoke billowing out after it? It was like that, only heading downwards. It light up quite a bit of the sky, but only for about five seconds. I nearly caused an accident because I braked in the middle of my turn. I thought "I should call somebody", because I thought that it was a plane going down or something, but I had no idea who I should call. The police? An ambulance? A firetruck? Or what?
 
Then I got to the bus stop and asked the other people waiting there if they'd seen it, and one guy said "yeah, I saw a firework going off". I thought, well, it was going downwards, but I guess it could have been a firework... I didn't know what it was until I read the paper the next morning (it was on the front page). Crazy stuff, man....

Now, I really should get back on writing that Canadian History paper... D:

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