Tuesday, January 23, 2007

ears,noses and throats, oh my!

I have been waiting since early October to get in to see an Otolaryngologists. There aren't very many (read, 1) here, so while my symptoms weren't anything serious, I figured if something needed to be done I better get on the waiting list while I could still walk. You see, my sinuses/throat always feels like there is something stuck in it. I am constantly trying to swallow whatever that may be, and honestly, it's pretty gross. And never goes away. Also, not really a huge concern of mine, but hypothetically due to the blocked sinuses, I have started snoring. Super awesome for Big Red.

So finally the big day. Since I'd never been to this particular office, it was decided by someone that was not me, that I needed a complete exam. It must all start with the ears or something, cause that's essentially what the full exam entailed. First, I had to sit down so she could check the pressure in my ears. She assures me this won't hurt. Then she starts reefing my ears into unnatural positions so she can shove a mangy looking piece of plastic in to them (apparently the "nothing bigger then your elbow" rule doesn't apply here and sterilization is optional). Once she seemed happy with my level of discomfort, she began to blow air into my ears. I must have misshapen ears, because more reefing and pulling was necessary to get the plastic bit to seal properly so maximum pressure and discomfort could be attained.

Next, I needed a hearing test. To perform said test, they close you in a room that looks like it was fabricated in Russian during the first World War. Only, instead of feeling safe in my own personal "bomb shelter" I had the feeling that if a bomb were to go off, somehow that room would implode while the rest of the building just shook a little. Anyway, the hearing test is no big deal, but they totally try to trick you. The first beeps come rhythmically, so you feel that you should be hearing the next one. The you worry there is a next one, but you can't hear it. So then you imagine noises and you press the button anyway. What started as a tiny concern about excess snot has now wound up with me getting a hearing aid...

Finally, I'm done with the technicalities and we can focus on why I'm really there. My nez. I explain my problems to the doctor. He looks at my tonsils - they are apparently a normal size. The rest of the exam is going to be much more serious. So serious it necessitates a metal forehead reflector. This makes me happy indeed. The rest does not. After careful placement of forehead reflector, he stuck a mirror waaaaay back in my throat so he could look up my nose. This was kinda like having a throat culture taken, but it took longer, so I was starting to have issues with not gagging. All clear! You would think this would be good. Not so much. Having a clear nasal passage meant he wanted to look down my throat. OMG. So he takes gauze and pulls my tongue out a painful amount. Then he takes a crazy snaky mirror and weaves it under my tongue and down my throat. Then he reminds me to breath because I am freaking out and holding my breath. I'm sure this took all of 45 seconds, but it felt like forever. The verdict? All clear.

What? So he's explaining to me that there is absolutely nothing blocking my throat in either direction. That my tonsils are totally normal and not causing the problem. And I have no adenoids, so that's not it either. I must have had a very confused look on my face. Cause I can feel something, as he's telling me this, in my throat. His assessment? Stress.

Stress? I wasn't aware I was stressed?! Not being aware that I have enough stress to make me think I'm sick makes me more stressed! As one final last shot I ask why I'm snoring. He takes one look at my profile and says "Oh, you have an out chin." Like that explains it all. Reading my mind he continues, "People with out chins tend to swallow their tongues when they sleep." Great...

So all this time I have been (unsuccessfully) trying to swallow my tonsils. But somewhat successfully swallowing my tongue. Awesome?

Thursday, January 11, 2007

someone call the darwin awards...

I've always known I was an idiot. This stopped surprising me eons ago. I catch myself surprising other people with just how stupid I can be all the time, but I thought I'd run out of things to surprise myself with. Laugh and shake my head at me, sure. But actually be surprised, not likely.

Until today. Home, since school was cancelled, I was making an attempt at being productive. Bathroom cleaning ranks highly on the list of things to do while being productive. So I'm cleaning away, almost finished, when I go to clean the mirror. Not thinking I spray Windex away to my hearts content. And it registers. My toothbrush sits right next to the mirror. I have solidly sprayed my toothbrush with orange, anti-bacterial, Windex. Awesome. Remember when it blizzarded out yesterday? I'm not going out for a toothbrush. I'm also not not going to brush my teeth. If I die, just tell them what happened and save them all the trouble of figuring out how I was poisoned...

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

clearly the world is ending

They actually cancelled school this afternoon. I cannot recall any other time in my history of living in Saskatchewan that I was present for schools being closed. Hell has frozen over my friends. Seriously, all them little demons are wearing ice skates today.

Of course, it needed to be done as awkwardly as possible. So the school board waited until everything in the city shut down first - universities, SIAST, the buses. Really, I'm pretty sure that's the only reason we got to go home at all - if we didn't send the kids home right then, we would have been stuck with them til tomorrow. While superintendants may be crazy, they do have a vague idea that that would be a bad scene. On the plus side, my neighbour and I already had a plan hatched out so that we would get the cookies from the cafeteria before anyone else even knew what was going on.

Interested in knowing what it looks like here? I'm too lazy to post my own stuff, so go check out Jeff's blog.

Sunday, January 07, 2007


When Rach asked me if I'd made New Year's resolutions this year, I answered no. Upon reflection, this is not entirely true. You see, I've been making resolutions since around mid-August when I commenced a slightly more active quest for a happier, more relaxed and more socially conscious lifestyle. This makes sense as my life revolves around the school calendar, and January 1st is really just an excuse to prolong the Christmas holidays (and a good one at that!). Anywho, since everyone else is doing it, I might as well firm up some of these resolutions. Heck, maybe I'll include them in my Annual Growth Binder as it's looking a little slim these days...

1. Consume less and consume more intelligently.
I hate that consumerism has become such a large part of our culture. I hate even more that people are defining themselves by what they own. The constant need to "upgrade" things that don't need upgrading while the planet is dying hurts me a lot. I'm really trying to be an intelligent consumer, but honestly it's difficult. There are so many hidden evils, so much conflicting information - who do you believe? So I have picked a few absolute evils, a few companies I feel good in supporting, but I think more important is the consuming less bit. Since buying my condo, I have been on a mini mission to simplify my life and a large part of this has been getting rid of unnecessary stuff. If you don't buy unnecessary stuff in the first place it gets even easier!

2. Moisturize more often.
Seriously, I must be related to crocodiles or alligators. I own things I can't touch without getting grossed out because they stick to my hands. Bare feet are a no no because they catch on the carpet. While I haven't yet gone out and purchased a bottle of Gold Bond, I do really wonder if it could get rid of the terrible terrible itching that is my back. You would think making myself bleed from scratching would have been motivation enough, but no. It would appear that noticing my skin is starting to look it's age may be the deciding factor. Does this mean my days of being ID'd are almost over?

3. Drink more wine.
I don't think I'll have any trouble with this one. I'm drinking wine right now! This is quite the progress considering just a little over two years ago I hated wine in most forms. (Not you ice wine, you have always been delicious. Expensive, but delicious.) So in the last couple of years, in the interest of looking much more cool than I really am and fitting into social situations with people my age, I decided I should like wine. I know I can force myself to like things as liking tea was my 2001 project, sushi was 2003 and these are now both staples to my diet. So now I like wine, but sometimes forget I like it, and therefore don't enjoy a glass enough. Besides, at least one of my resolutions needs to be attainable.

4. See Nelly Furtado.
On April 5th, live, in Montreal. This is for you Rach. I really am trying.

5. Revamp the way I teach Math 10.
I hate the way I teach Math 10. It's not a bad way, I accomplish all the provincial objectives and my students do well. But I have no love for Math 10. Partially because I have less love for grade 10 students compared to the other grades, but also because the course it a little bit of an oddity with the rest of the math flow. I've been reflecting upon this quite a bit lately, and I think with some changes I could learn to like Math 10 (or at least tolerate it more than I do now) and that this would also make me like grade 10 students a little more. If I like it more, I will be more excited and by extension they will like it more, right? It has potential to be one of the most practical math classes in a very literal sense, just not the way it's set out according to our ressources and common practice. This is the semester where I shall say screw that! and up the bar a little bit. This might be a bit of a challenge seeing as I have 3 new preps outside of this, but still doable me thinks.

6. Get out more often.
Possibly rendered a little more difficult by the last sentence in resolution #5, but most people give up on their resolutions by the end of January anyway so there's no harm in trying... Christmas really made me realise how much I've isolated myself this year; staying in to work, hang with Bid Red or to just watch tv. While these are all important things to do, I kinda forgot how much I enjoy going out with friends. This seems like a stupid thing to say, but I forget how awesome all my friends are. Sorry guys, sometimes it's just so easy to be lazy and to not call. While my Christmas schedule would be impossible to uphold all year round, I really do want to make more of an effort at getting out for coffee or actually getting together for that board game night instead of just talking about it all the time. Oh yes, and Dad, we should start going to movies again.

I think I should stop while I'm ahead. And before the wine hits and I start spewing nonsense. Happy 2007 everyone!

Friday, January 05, 2007

i'm a failure

What's that Chelle? You somehow managed to pull your hamstring by doing absolutely nothing in the last couple days? Those days where you have been sleeping in, sitting at the computer, then napping, followed by tv or video game watching? But those activities don't even require legs! Oh, you know that? Then what's up with the limp?

In other news, I have failed at my only post Christmas project. Or maybe not. Heavens I make things complicated! Yesterday, when I went to apply the second coat to my shelving unit it was very tacky. Check it out, there's my fingerprints in my new coat of paint kind of tacky. I was thinking this was probably because I was a failure as a shelf sander and that I would need to start over. Not to mention seek out therapy for my inability to complete the easiest tasks. I have been racking my brain as to where I could find a palm sander to make this second attempt more successful. Just for fun, after I typed the first sentence of this paragraph, I thought I should leave some more fingerprints in my shelf to remind me of what a failure I really am. Quelle surprise! It's totally dry now.

Now what to do? Do I paint it again, and simply expect a strange 48 hour drying time? Do I "scuff" the surface and then paint? Do I go with the original plan of palm sanding the crap out of it and starting over? Or do I throw the whole thing in the Loras bin and pretend I never wanted a corner shelf in the first place? Help! Who let me buy a house?

Thursday, January 04, 2007

happy new year!

I hope everyone had as wonderful a Christmas as I did this year. Every year as more and more people move away, Christmas is more jam packed with visiting friends I really wish would hurry up and move back home already! It was especially great that Rach and Marlito finagled some serious holiday time so we had the luxury of spending not just catching up time but quality time as well. Rach and I, obviously in a bit of withdrawl from political discussion, had enough debate-like conversations to hopefully get us through this next period of not seeing one another without our brains turning to mush and/or without accidentally scaring an acquaintance with our opinions.

Against all my better judgment, Big Red and I went out on New Years. I am not a lover of New Years as plans typically go awry and way too much expectation is invested in one evening. So I was pleasantly surprised indeed when we had a kickassawesome evening of dancing and socializing. I should probably thank our boss who gave us both the night off, and then was not angry that we came to her club anyway.

There are very few days of holidays left and so it is time to finally address the little bits of work that need to get done before I go back to school. I did a good job of this yesterday. I had a leisurely morning, and talked to a few people I didn't manage to see over the break. I put the first coat of paint on a shelving unit for my kitchen. I may have managed to clear off my kitchen table. I rewarded this "hard work" with an afternoon nap. The rest of my day didn't look much different (I did manage to get my house clean).

It's been a wonderful holiday indeed.