Month: September 2009

Desparate Alligators

We had a training session at work today with regards to conflict and communication.  The instructor used “The Alligator River Story”, from the Canadian Institute for Conflict Resolution.  Here’s the story:

This story is about a woman named Abigail, who is desperate and in love. She wants the chance to be reunited with her lover, Gregory. The only thing that separates the two is an alligator filled river. When her friend, Ivan, refuses to help her across, she is then faced with a boat captain’s offer. In order for Captain Sinbad to help Abigail across the river she would first have to sleep with him. She then went to a friend named Vana to explain the dilemma.  Vana did not want to be involved at all in this situation.  At first, Abigail refuses but then decides to take the boat captain’s offer. Once Abigail is reunited with her lover, Gregory, she confesses her wrong doing. Gregory gives Abigail the boot in disgust and she is left heartbroken. She then tells her other friend, Slug, about what had happened. Being the compassionate friend, Slug beats Gregory brutally while Abigail watches…..laughing.

We had to list the characters in order of most to least respectful.  We then had to compare our list with other’s in the group.  Mine was WAY off of the norm.  Here’s my version of this story, aptly renamed “Desperate Housewives of Alligator River”:

Abigail and Vana have been close friends for many years, but there was always competitive tension between them – more so from Abigail than Vana.  While out clubbing, Vana noticed Gregory and decided to go for him.  This made Abigail jealous, even though she thought nothing of Gregory.  However, the thought of her remaining single while Vana hooked up with someone, really ticked off Abigail.  She swooped into the conversation between Vana and Gregory, just seconds after it started.  She flirted and showed some boob, thus sweeping Gregory off his abnormally small feet.  Vana was quite annoyed by this.  Anyway, after a few dates with her new beau Gregory, Abigail became bored with him.  She had to think of a way to break it off.  She knew the ferry captain, Sinbad, was the town mimbo (male bimbo), so she repeated her tactics from her first meeting with Gregory with Sinbad.  They got it on as the boat made it’s way to the other side of the river.  She told Gregory what she had just done, and he dumped her, as expected.  She told her friend Slug what just occurred.  He was a rather violent individual, which Abigail was using to her advantage.  Slug crossed the river and beat up Gregory, to the sadistic delight of Abigail (thus the laughing at the end of the story).

I actually told the group my version of the story, justifying why most of my answers were different than the other’s.  The instructor asked me if I wanted to take over the training.  I graciously declined.

Today’s symptoms:  I felt really icky most of the day.  My fatigue was really intense, my muscles were burning and my joints were aching.  I’ve had a bad headache since this morning. 

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Flightless Weekend

Chuck and I visited Fort Erie yesterday.  I donated the “grand prize” for the South Niagara Life Centre fund raising event this weekend.  I was asked to meet them at the Fort Erie Library to draw the name for a flight around Niagara.  Unfortunately, the woman who’s name I drew had just left the event, so I guess I won’t meet her until our flight.  The great news is they raised over $14,000!  This will be matched dollar for dollar by two generous donators.  It was perfect weather, which was nice for the walk they did. 
After the draw, Chuck and I went to
Rosehill Auction.  It was our first time there.  I must say, it would be a great place to visit if you’re in the market for any major appliance or larger furniture.  It was insanely packed and crowded, also hard to navigate due to the large volume of merchandise in the store.  We didn’t get too much out of our visit as we weren’t looking for anything in particular.  Still, it was nice to check it out.
For the past six to eight months, I have been using my
Lateral Thigh Trainer (from the As Seen on TV store).  What a great piece of equipment.  Unfortunately, it’s starting to wear out and it’s creaking and cracking.  Like most people, I can’t stand it when my exercise equipment starts to get noisy.  I have been using it for 20 – 60 minutes a day and I only paid $40.00 for it, so I got my money out of it.  I decided to look for new stepper-type machines.  I did tons of research online, but most of them seem to have the same noise issues after months of use.  My mother and I went to Sears today and I decided to try out the recumbent bikes.  I used to use one at the YMCA all the time and forgot how much I liked them.  I ended up purchasing the Free Spirit Recumbent Cycle.  I hope I can tolerate the dreadful noises my Lateral Thigh Trainer is making for a few more days.  They didn’t have the cycle in stock so I can’t get one until Wednesday or Thursday.  I will do a product review after a few days of use – stay tuned!

As you can probably surmise from the title of this blog, I didn’t get to fly this weekend.  I was going to fly to Brampton to visit a friend today, but the weather wasn’t co-operating.  Hopefully things clear up a bit later in the week so I can take an hour or two of vacation and hit the skies.

Symptoms for today: I slept in until around 9:00 today.  Mind you, I was up from 6:00 – 7:20 with extremely hyper kitties that would not stop running around and jumping on the bed like a pair of kids!  My mother and I lasted several hours at the PEN Centre, and I didn’t poop out until around 4:00!  Yea!

Demon Spawn

I spent the majority of today out on the road doing field calls for work.  I was all over Niagara – St. Catharines, Welland, Port Colborne, St. Ann’s, Grimsby and Vineland.  As usual, I had to make several piddidle stops during my travels.  I typically stop at Tim Hortons, since there is one every 100 metres in the Niagara Region.  I feel bad about using their facilities without buying something, so I usually get a maple dip donut.  I’m not a big donut-person, so I end up eating the maple dip topping, and bring the plain donut leftovers home for composting.  Since I stopped twice today, I decided to bring home a “smiley” cookie for Chuck.  The Smile cookie: “The entire proceeds from the sales of these delicious, chocolate chunk Smile Cookies are donated to local charities, hospitals and community programs from coast to coast.”  I put the cookie in the same bag as my maple dip donut – big mistake.  The two clashed in their cocoon sack, producing a smiley cookie demonic spawn.  When I got home, the scene was horrifying.  I am going to post a picture of the outcome.  If you have young children in the room, I strongly suggest you ask them to leave:

I was able to incapacitate the mutant, before surgically separating the two entities.  Once done, they were quickly consumed for the sake of mankind.  (yummy!)

The day actually went quite well, despite the above mentioned atrocity.  I was able to do all of my field calls (about eight) and get back home around my normal quitting time.

Symptoms for today: Feeling better than I’ve felt all month.  That icky sinus/cold thing is finally out of my system and my energy is coming back, although rather slowly.  I’m still having bad headaches every day.

Posted by Lizzy McFly at 9/22/2009 7:42 PM

Breaking Point

Something has been bothering me for a few months now.  They have been converting the Tim Hortons counters, which has also changed the way people line up.  The Timmy’s near the Seaway Mall in Welland has been causing a fair bit of grief.  Everyone lines up at the one cashier, and the line goes past the seats along the wall.  Unlike other stores, they do not have one of those “Please line up here” dividing ropes, which they really need to invest in.  The vast majority of people realize that you line up behind the one register, then the next person in line goes to one of two available cashiers.  They know not to start a new line behind the other register.  Well, my mother and I went to that Tim Hortons today and I stayed in line while she sat at the table we typically sit at.  There were close to ten people in line by the time I went up to the register.  Just before my turn, a woman rudely walked over to the other cashier, bypassing the whole line process.  I was going to say something, but the family who was just leaving the register I was approaching, were in my way.  I looked back at the people behind me and they rolled their eyes in annoyance.  I was slightly irked at this time.  Then, while I was placing my order, this jerk male walks right over to the other clerk and starts ordering – like the woman before him, bypassed the line.  The woman behind me and I both said there was a line.  He said “Too bad, no one was here”.  A few of us starting telling him to get back in line, but he kept arguing and then placed his order.  The cashier should have told him to get in line, but she didn’t.  This was my breaking point.  I walked past him with my order, while looking back at the huge line – everyone was really ticked.  I placed the tray down at our table and walked back toward him to grab some napkins.  It was at this point Lizzy passed her breaking point.  I said rather loudly “You know, you just butt in front of all those people in line – that was really rude.”  He said “That’s too bad, no one was there.”  I started YELLING “That’s really nice, did you not see the line?  I guess you’re better than everyone else, so you don’t have to wait in line!”   At this point, EVERYONE in the store stopped and was watching.  After my first LOUD line to him, a few people started clapping.  I couldn’t stop at that point.  He said “I can’t stand in line, I’m disabled!”  I said “Well I have MS, so I guess I get to go straight to the head of lines too!”  He said “So what!”  While I was walking away, he mentioned again that he was disabled and I said “Yeah, mentally!”   By the time I got back to my seat, I was shaking.  The two women in the seat next us said “That was great!” and “It’s about time someone stood up to people like that who think they’re better than everyone!”  They also mentioned that they saw the first woman who butted and they were really mad about it.  It took me a few minutes to calm down and stop shaking.  About 10 minutes after I sat down, the jerk I just yelled at got up to leave.  He did this big, exaggerated limp, which wasn’t there at all earlier.  What a wanker!  I still can’t believe I confronted him like that though.  I guess I had some pent up frustration in me that finally escaped!  Yea me!

Today’s symptoms: I’m fairly drained after my emotional “incident” today.  Earlier this evening, I developed a really bad headache.  I’m going to take a couple Tylenol and go to bed very soon.

Ongoing Poopiness

It appears I’m still struggling with this sicky-poo illness I developed three weeks ago.  Starting Thursday afternoon, I was hit with almost debilitating fatigue, which fortunately is a bit better today.  I made the decision yesterday that I would feel totally fine today. I am now amending that goal to tomorrow.  Yup, all better tomorrow, folks! Ain’t nothing gonna stop me now!

Update on my youngest hairless cat – she’s totally insane!  While she and her sister were eating in the kitchen this morning, I started brushing my teeth in the bathroom.  I figured I had enough time to finish before they did (especially Abby!) but I was wrong.  Just as I bent over to rinse my mouth, Abby pounced on my back.  She sat there ever so neatly, licking her chops and cleaning her face.  I had to remain in the hunched position while walking into the bedroom to let her (force her) to dismount on the bed.  You would think I would have learned my lesson, but I walked over to my laptop sitting on the dresser, and bent over just slightly to check my email.  I instantly had a six pound hairless ball of silliness on my back again.  I managed to put on my socks and pants while she was up there, but figured I should remove her again before I walked to work.  I know our dress code is somewhat slack, but that would be pushing it!

I wrote this blog (draft) while sitting in a meeting at work.  The chicky who sits in the pod next to me also sat next to me in the meeting.  She requested that I mention this in my blog.  Here’s your moment of fame, Kathie!  By the way, the word “absolutely” was used over thirty times during the first hour of our meeting!  What the heck?!

Today’s symptoms:  Still very weak and tired.  A bit better today than yesterday, so I can’t complain!  I started getting a symptom that I haven’t had in months – when I yawn, I get this weird electrical sensation running down the backs of my legs.  Hmmm…..

Flytastic Weekend!

We had a golf tournament at work recently, to raise money for cancer.  I donated a flight to the auction and took the winning bidder up on Saturday.  We left around 10:00 and headed over Niagara Falls.  After a couple times around the scenic circuit, we flew over to Welland, then back around St. Catharines.  He was a really great passenger and even took control of the plane at one point.  He also gave me a couple bottles of wine after the flight!  *** burp ***  We landed at 11:00, at which point I picked up my little mother and headed up again.  We flew to the Welland Airport for their Wings and Wheels event.  I really wanted to see the Silver Dart , which is the first “flying machine” in Canada.  A great bunch of folks I know from the RAA plus some others, created a fully functional replica which flew for the first time earlier this year.  Here’s a pic of the Silver Dart, hiding behind some chicks.

It was quite a good turn out at the event.  People were amazed when we told them we flew in all the way from St. Catharines.
We had a long and exhausting flight back to St. Catharines – a flight which I proudly logged into my log book at eleven minutes.  Actually, while driving back, we waited at the Homer Bridge for about three times as long as our flight, while two ships crawled along in opposite directions.

Another great day of flying on Sunday.  A friend from work and I flew over Lakeside Park in Port Dalhousie to snap some photos of the human red cross (for the Canadian Red Cross), created by about 130 people strategically wearing red or white shirts.  We took off at 12:45 and headed straight to the park.  I was told the cross would be formed at around 1:30.  We were shocked when they got everyone in position by a little after 1:00.  We snapped a bunch of pictures, but before we got as many shots as we were hoping for, the crowd disbursed.  I found this rather odd as the coordinator of the event asked how she would know when we had enough shots.  I told her I would rock my wings and head out into the sunset.  I did not rock my wings and was still flying around the park when the cross was dismantled, so I didn’t really know what was going on.  I flew my passenger Pam over her house, then called the tower to inform them we were coming in for a landing.  Right after I made my call, I received a call from the coordinator on my cell.  She said “Ok, we’re forming up now!”  I said “Gee….ummmm…I thought we were done?!”   She said that they were just practicing.  I made another call to the airport tower and informed the ever-so-nice tower folks that I had been summoned back to the park.  The cross was back in place and we grabbed some more shots.  When we had enough, I rocked my wings and headed back to the airport.  Here are a few pics from today:


I’m sure Pam’s pictures will be much nicer and at the proper angle!

Today’s symptoms:  It is now 15:45 and I’m feeling just a little drained.  I’m going to rest and relax for the remainder of the day – I need to conserve my strength for my day off tomorrow!  Yea!

Posted by Lizzy McFly at 9/13/2009 2:03 PM

Smelly Story

My mother told me a rather amusing story today.  She and her sister were in Zellers the other day on one of their routine shopping trips.  They walked to the back of the store to use the washroom.  Two women were coming out as they were going in.  As soon as they entered, the smell almost knocked them backwards.  They both really had to pi-diddle so they held their breath and did their thing.  My mother assumed it was the ladies that just walked out that caused the odour, so she loudly said “Oh my gosh, this is criminal!  There oughta be a law against it!”  They both then went on about how horrid the stench was and kept saying to hurry up so they could get out of there.  As my mother reached for the paper towels to dry her hands, she noticed the feet in the end stall.  Yes, the source of the putrid smell was in there with them!  My mother pointed out the feet to her sister and they both ran like heck out of the washroom and almost fell into a heap from their bouts of laughter.  Man, how embarrassing.  I don’t know if it was more so for them or for the poor, smelly woman in the stall!

I think I’ve only taken about 10 hours of vacation since April, and I have 360 hours left, so I might take a couple hours tomorrow to go for a flight.  I told myself I would take more time off this summer, but that didn’t seem to happen.   I have a vacation leave hoarding issue.  I should be on that new show “Hoarders”.  Or maybe “Intervention”, since I clearly need help with this ongoing issue.  Actually, it seems to be getting worse every year.  I better get crackin’ as I’m only allowed to carry over 262 hours into the next fiscal.

Today’s symptoms: I’m still dealing with this sinus/cold thing.  It really seems to enjoy my company – it just doesn’t want to leave!

Visit to Binghamton, NY

Chuck and I headed out to the Niagara District Airport at around 9:00 on Saturday morning.  The clouds were rather low that morning and it was a bit hazy, but it was still fly-able.  We packed up the plane and started our little trek to Binghamton, New York.  His brother lives there and I had yet to meet him until this weekend.  The clouds lifted once we were a little past Buffalo and it was an incredible flight through the Finger Lakes area. 

We arrived at the Binghamton Airport in less than two hours. 

We had called Customs the day before, as they had to send someone out to the airport (they’re normally only there on weekdays).  Until we met with the Customs Officer, we were not allowed to leave the plane.  Forty-five minutes after sitting there, Chuck’s bladder finally got to its breaking point and he ran into the terminal building.  I’m glad he did because his brother and spouse were inside waiting for us.  We felt so bad for making them wait, but they understood the situation.  Chuck told the dispatcher inside that we had been waiting for the Customs Officer for about 45 minutes, and she called to see if anyone was on their way.  She was able to get in touch with the Officer, who was on her way, and let Chuck know that I was allowed to leave the plane.  We unloaded our baggage and the Officer showed up about 10 minutes later.  She was very apologetic about being late – I hope she takes that into consideration when she sends us the bill for her coming out to the airport!
Our first stop was Brozetti’s Pizza in Johnson City.  While waiting for the pizza to be made, we wandered around the area.  Terry and Peter were amazing tour guides with a wealth of knowledge of the area.  After about 20 minutes, we picked up our grub and went back to Terry and Peter’s home, which was SO nice!  Before the tour of the home, we ate our pizza (which was excellent!) and had some of the raspberry and sweet cherry pie we brought with us from the St. Catharines Market.  Yum-O!  Following lunch, we had a tour of their very large and beautiful home. 

We continued with our tour of the area, which was a trip down memory lane for Chuck.  We also stopped at the house of a friend and former next door neighbour of Peter and Terry.  It was a really nice visit and many good stories were told.
We headed to The Outback Steakhouse in Vestal for suppies.  Our waitress was super nice and friendly plus the food was excellent.  That plus the great company made for a nice dinner!

Back at the house, we watched an old family video, then it was off to get ready for bed.  It was at this point that I realized that the bar of soap in their downstairs bathroom matched the carpet runner in the hall.  Talk about coordination!
 

The next morning we went to the Park Diner in Binghamton for breakfast.  Check out the photo gallery on their website – what an amazine view!  After breakfast we went to see the New York State Inebriate Asylum

I’m sure when Terry and Peter saw me scale the chain link fence in front of the building, in order to take a picture, they probably figured that I had been to an asylum before, if you know what I mean!

Back to the airport, got some fuel, and put our bags in the plane.  We bid Peter and Terry a fond farewell.  We really did have a great visit and hope to see them again soon!  The flight back was very nice and we arrived within 10 minutes of our estimated time of arrival that we gave to Customs.  They cleared us over the phone and we were on the road home.  What a great weekend!  Thanks again, Terry and Peter!

Today’s symptoms:  I’m still congested from this cold I deveoped a week and a half ago.  I also still have the sinus headache, but it’s getting better (that’s all that matters!)  I’m pooped from the trip but it was well worth it!  I’m glad I have the day off tomorrow (Labour Day) to recover.

Elizapits

I had a rather odd morning.  While sitting at my desk at work, I noticed this amazingly fresh, clean smell around me.  I just couldn’t figure out where it was coming from.  Over a two hour period, I smelled my hair, shirt, telephone, headphones to my iPod, the three drawers of my cabinet, chair, pen, stapler and a few documents.  The smell stayed the same wonderful intensity the entire time – actually, for the entire day!  After about two hours of investigative sniffing, I finally figured out the source of the scent – it was my new deodorant!  It’s Men’s Speed Stick – Ocean Surf.  We got a big ol’ box of them from Costco.  Yes, my pits were alive with the glorious aroma that lingered all day long.  How PITyful that I didn’t find this wonderful product sooner?  The smell is as intense as a PIT-bull.  I wonder if it will be as pleasant while I’m in the cockPIT of my plane tomorrow?  If so, I will be the ePITome of everyone around me!   Tis a PITy that more people don’t go out and buy some.
I had another strange thing happen at work.  We have this new log in screen that pops up as soon as we log on to our main computer system.  I thought it was for the program for our time sheets, so that was the password I was using.  Well, three tries later and I received the message “you have been temporarily locked out of the system.”  Ok, that’s fine – everything still seemed to work on my computer.  Then I looked over at my time sheet icon and it vanished!  How rude is that?  Big deal, I put in the wrong password a few times, does that mean I need to be punished by having my icon taken away?  It’s like a little icon Nazi!  I wonder if I’ll be allowed my icon back next week, since I obviously couldn’t do my time sheet today!

I’m off to bed now.  We have a fun weekend planned – we’re flying to Binghamton, New York tomorrow to visit Chuck’s brother.  We’ll be flying back early on Sunday.  I shall post pictures of our flight over the Finger Lakes then!

Today’s symptoms:  Still a little drained from my sinus/cold thing.  Other than that, not too bad.