Monday, April 30, 2007

Nothing Helps

I tried to finish the paper. It was a dirge. It was still not done by Monday. I didn't sleep. The rolaids, the beers, the big metal thermos full of tea, the food, the books, nothing helped. It was miserable

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Long night

I don't think I took a picture on sunday proper, but by this time of night, I guess it was technically Sunday. Anyway, the point is that I accidentally took this picture of Laura when someone else's flash was going off! That's why she looks like a movie star.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Break time

Even though my paper due Friday wasn't done on Saturday, Anne-Michelle made me come to her awesome multiple-birthday party on pain of.... well, you can see. It was a good time.

Friday, April 27, 2007


Today was Debra the All-Knowing's last day. She's not going far, though; Modern Languages and Cultural Studies hired her as an APO, which means more money for doing one person's job instead of four. We got a free lunch out of it, but I think we're losing on the deal.

Party Time?

Here are people looking how I would feel if I had finished my papers. It's a non-stop party atmosphere around here, but for me it's a non-start party.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Springtime in Edmonton

So, I guess it rained gravel and dry leaves last night, because I don't remember seeing this stuff yesterday. Anyway, this path reminded me that some parts of campus are almost wheelchair accessible, which is a little bit like a boat being almost waterproof. In the winter, the concrete barriers almost completely blocking the wheelchair accessible door to the lab building were supplemented with snowbanks plowed right into the gaps. Joke's on them, though: Even if you could get into the building, there's no way to get into the actual lab! Ha.

To be fair, the bulldozers got rid of this stuff by mid afternoon.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007


Until this morning, I seriously believed that the English translation on the left contained all the material in the Japanese originals on the right. Like, maybe Japanese hardcover fonts and European paper sizes magically triple the size of books. It turns out the English versions are missing not only whole chapters, but parts in the middle of the interviews as well.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Monday, April 23, 2007

Travel plans

Katherine is going to Vancouver for the weekend starting Wednesday. What will I do without her! Fiona feels the same way, but she obviously has a plan.

Sunday, April 22, 2007


Here's death, from the church we sang at. I skipped Saturday in the blog because I skipped Saturday in the world.

Friday, April 20, 2007

late night

I forgot to take pictures of our concert, or of the church with the four horsemen of the apocalypse on the walls. I forgot I even had my camera until I was on the subway back to the lab.

Thursday, April 19, 2007


And I laughed when I heard that it was snowing in Nashville. Surely, one surprise snowfall per spring is enough.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Dust and Dreams

They used to call U. Waterloo "mud and dreams" because they just started building it in the 50's and have never really stopped. There's more construction going on at U. Alberta than I ever saw at Waterloo. Also, Edmonton is drier.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

5 to 10

I just went to the grocery store. When I don't go to the grocery store for months, I feel like eating nothing but fresh fruits and vegetables. In fact, Tanya was there, celebrating being finished her papers by buying lots and lots of fruit.

Monday, April 16, 2007


Yay I found my camera! Yay we finally went with Chris for soup! Don't let Katherine's winter jacket fool you: Today was 16 degrees Celsius, and as bright as the surface of the sun.

Sunday, April 15, 2007


I'm too busy to take pictures today, so here's an old one of me in Banff being totally unable to climb on these railings. Anyway, the mountain is nice.

Saturday, April 14, 2007


This is the Rutherford library. I think it's the second biggest library in Canada, bookwise, and it's a good thing it's made out of brick because somebody lit a garbage can on fire right there where it's all black. The guy on the bike is our eloquent phonetician Mark Chen. He has offered to take me on a food tour of Sichuan, where they make excellent Tofu dishes. w00t!

Friday, April 13, 2007

Moving day

I left my camera in the lab, so I don't have pictures of either of the parties I was at today. Instead, I'll post this picture of Ken's I found. This is what our house looked like for about 12 hours on moving day last year. Fortunately, it only rained twice.

Thursday, April 12, 2007


I saw this at choir practice today. Oh! I want to go back to Elementary school. Then again, I wish I was doing anything apart from writing papers. I even caught myself wishing I could have to write papers instead of having to write papers.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Not totally effective

Every day when I leave the house I think "nothing will be strange enough to photograph today." I thought that this morning. Then I saw one of these. Then I saw three of these. I think, even with three, it will not form an effective wall.

We're all in this together

Looks like I'm not the only presenter who stayed up late last night. Or, maybe Koji's just enjoying the sun. Look! The snow is gone!


Here's some of my data. I spent all evening using it to make a presentation that is conversational in style. But what kind of conversation can you have at 2:30 am? Not a beautiful one about data.

Monday, April 9, 2007


Choir practice was moved to tonight because nobody wants to go to choir on the last night of a 4-day week. We couldn't use our normal room, but fortunately one of the Catholic priests in the choir is also the president of this college, so we got to use the chapel. It has better windows and a worse piano.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Back home

For the first 2 or 3 hours driving away from Banff today we could see the rockies. I can't handle how beautiful they are. I could live in any of the little towns we went through. But hey, Edmonton looks nice too.

Wolf path

It wouldn't be a vacation if we didn't climb a mountain, so we turned off the path we were hiking on and went up here. You could tell from the footprints that no people had gone up here in a while, but a wolf had recently come down. Wolves shy away from humans, we heard, so we weren't worried until we saw this:
This was warm, wet, and pointed in the direction we were travelling. After conferring for a while, Katherine declared that it was probably just a small bear, so we kept going. We sang, just in case.


Eventually I got tired of taking pictures of unreasonably beautiful mountains, but this river was just too much.


Look carefully: For some reason, French speakers only have to climb 60 m, but English speakers have to climb 455m.
They really want us to read this.

Discovering Banff

I guess Banff exists today because some railroad workers climbed down a hole and found hot, stinky water. I don't know why they had to climb down the hole. It was all over the place, sending up steam, making baby trees look like signs from God.


Alberta is very bright, so I had to buy these badaxx sunglasses for the trip. You can see the photographer if you look carefully.

Our room

This is the the view from the balcony of our hotel room. Notice how large the balcony is, based on how far back Katherine is. I won't even bother to show you pictures of the fireplace in the room, because then you would just get jealous.

Friday, April 6, 2007


Katherine has a job, which means she also has vacations. So, for Easter she drove us to Banff. Many more pictures to follow.

P.S. - I'm backdating these posts.

Thursday, April 5, 2007


I took a better picture of Mark biking by a wall on fire, but this one is more like my day. I spend all day trying to get English speakers to come by and push buttons. I gave them chocolate, but it was really Neill's convincing that did the trick. Thanks Neill!

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Penalty Box!

When I become a Canadian citizen, I'm going to have a Canadian party, at which the French-Canadian doctoral student and I captain hockey teams in a symbolic struggle between French and English Canada. One of the Albertans suggested that it should be West v. East instead. Either way, I'm playing in a Leafs jersey, and we're holding it at this rink by Katherine's house.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Summer Nights

Sure, maybe it isn't snowing and -10 C where you are, but I'll bet it isn't this bright at 8pm either. Wait till summer, when the Canada Day fireworks can't start until 11 pm because that's when the sky is _almost dark_.

Monday, April 2, 2007

WTF April

I'm used to winter blizzards, but in April? Really?

Sunday, April 1, 2007


Somehow, even though I used to live on this street with a balcony facing this building, I didn't notice this art until yesterday. Also note: 109 Books is the best bookstore in Edmonton, when it's open.