Sunday, February 28, 2010

Nothing lasts forever

As medical students, we take a measured amount of pride in our station. The most common way of expressing this pride is dropping the M-bomb at bars is wearing our uniformly blue med school backpacks. However, given that these knapsacks convert 224 students into an indistinguishable sea of blue, some kind of marker is needed to distinguish one pack from the other (lest we put them down, say, for an exam).

While during Orientation, we were encouraged to brand our backpacks with tacky airport-style name-tags, I opted for a classier approach - pins.

I began the year with my Queen's alumni pin affixed firmly to my bag. This was perfect - it expressed both my pride as a medical student and as a Queen's alumnus. However, after several months, this pin broke in half. Though I managed to mend it with the help of some crazy glue, I decided that it was too fragile to use again - lest I lose it forever (I don't know where it is anymore...).

I swapped in a Superman pin that I'd picked up at Fan Expo from the DC Comics booth. That was pretty neat (not to mention a source of J-Rock's intense envy) until one day it fell off and was never seen from again.

With two pins down, I was pretty discouraged. I replaced the Superman pin with a Batman pin that I'd also picked up from the DC booth. However, this time, I glue gunned the fastening mechanism shut. This pin was never coming off... ever.

True enough, the glue gun worked magnificently, and the pin never came unfastened. However, apparently, while the fastening mechanism remains sturdy, the body of the pin is subject to its own wear and tear. This week, the pin body became detached entirely from the fastening mechanism, leaving nothing but the wiry remains pictured above.

Bollocks. I thought I had outsmarted pin losses, but that's three down.

I guess it's a good thing that Sandlot bought me six more for Christmas.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

You held my blog, I held your hand

I'd like to thank Sandlot for taking over my blogging duties yesterday and providing my readers with some fresh content. It's true, my life has been busy yet boring as of late, leaving with me with little impetus to write. Still, here I am to fill your lives with mush once, sharing with you this most interesting of winter accessories - the smitten.

The smitten (or "couple's glove") is a shared mitten intended for couples who want to keep their distal upper extremities warm whilst getting their mushy hand-hold on. It first came to my attention on Sandlot's blog, whereby it was suggested as a solution to perpetually losing your gloves (it's easy to lose a glove, hard to lose a glover). As we started dating, it became a running joke between us. However, like the unicorn, the smitten was more a creature of myth than living, breathing real-life entity - one of those tall tales that only gets told on the Internets.

Lo and behold, as I kicked back and watched Grey's Anatomy at Yubin's apartment today (Yes, I have been catching up on Grey's this week as Sandlot revealed - twelve episodes in four days), Yubin popped out of her room brandishing the strange looking apparatus above.

Yubin: Isn't this cute?

Andy: What is that?

Yubin: It's a couple's mitten.

WHAT?! The fabled smitten... it exists! I want.

The following text exchange occurred. Mush warning!

Andy: GASP! Yubin has a smitten!!!

Sandlot: Waaaaa Yubin is so cool!! I could totally see her sporting a smitten.

Andy: Her sister bought it for her and her boyfriend, but then they broke up so she gave it to Yubin.

Sandlot: Haha aw. I dunno how I would feel about wearing someone's secondhand smitten. But it's still so cool! I want one!

Andy: Well now we know smittens are not just things you find in pictures on the Internets.

Sandlot: Hahaha. Cuteee.

Andy: Not as gag-worthily cute as we'd be with one. Although it does have little hearts all over it, so it's pretty gaggingly cute.

Sandlot: Little hearts eh? Hrm... I dunno if could wear that, it might be a bit too much. Haha. Plain red smitten. That's what I want. Haha.

Andy: It would be awesome if we had one. All your friends would be like: "OMG I don't know you."

Sandlot: Haha I know. OMG WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO ME ANDY?!!!!!!!!!!!

Showered you with affection. Tis all.

Friday, February 26, 2010

WHERE IN THE WORLD IS ANDY?!!!! (A Guest Blog)


Hello Readers of Chronicle!

Once again, this is Sandlot blogging. Except that rather than being invited by Andy to guest blog, this time around, I have overtaken guest blogging duties without his permission.

Yeah, I know what you guys might be thinking at this very moment: "Without Andy's permission?!! This is outrageous! An uproar! Call the military, the navy and the cavalry!!!"

But before we get tax payers' monies involved into this situation, allow me to explain.

Perhaps, similar to me, many of you have noticed that it has almost been an entire week since Andy has last blogged. Normally, this wouldn't stir up any concern... except for the fact that we're talking about Andy - author of Chronicle.

As a self-proclaimed slave to his blog, Andy usually manages to keep us entertained with at least a new post every other day or two. However, having visited Chronicle for the past four days looking for new material about his love/hate relationship with school, passionate posts about politics or even posts dedicated to my awesomeness (calm the heck down mush patrol!), only to be greeted by the same picture of some sketchy man riding the TTC is a cause for worry. Great worry.

Why hasn't Andy updated his blog? What has Andy been doing this past week that is so important that it has made him stop blogging?

Studying?
Watching girly TV medical dramas?
Plotting the final stages of his plan for world domination?
Or maybe he got eaten by a hungry giant mutant gorilla.

Whatever it is, Andy has been neglecting Chronicle and I don't know about you guys, but I can't take it any longer! I mean, honestly, what else am I going to read? The news? Pffttt. My textbooks? Hah! Please!

So there you have it. IF YOU'RE READING THIS ANDY, UPDATE YOUR BLOG. KTHANKS.



Also J-Rock, if you're reading this, you owe me 1/4 of your soul in a nice shiny jar.

Monday, February 22, 2010

I am not a creeper

Sometimes you run into a person who looks perfectly normal and probably functions about so, but they're clearly not. Take for instance the above TTC patron. He looks fairly ordinary with his chubby midriff (~30% of North Americans), Tim Horton's coffee (~90% of Canadians), and vocational ID badge.

Sure he looks like he's trying to withdraw into his seat, his neck muscles so stiff that it rather looks like he has no neck, but some people have no neck? Sure it's a bit gross that as he tore into his Tim Hortons muffin he let it roll all over the seat in front of him (no doubt infested with all sorts of enteric bacteria), but some people don't understand personal hygiene?

Then, the subway lurched to a start, and from the seat in front of me this only vaguely odd looking man let out a piercing, "AWROOoo!!!"

I turned to my left, my eyebrows furrowed in half-sincere anxiety. "I think he's a werewolf!" I whispered.

As for the photo - even Brutus didn't notice me taking it, and he was sitting beside me. I'm a ninja.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Un-bieber-lievable

Justin Bieber is the latest incarnation in a long line of prepubescent popstars conceived of in the spirit of Aaron Carter. He first appeared on my radar as an annoying Cineplex theatres pre-show feature, which ran with just about every movie last year. According to the feature, Bieber began as a YouTube sensation before being wooed by both Justin Timberlake and Usher to sign on with their respective labels. He chose "his idol" Usher (and in his first music video "One Time", is portrayed to be buddy-buddy with the icon - "JB, wassup man?").

There's a lot to dislike about Justin Bieber, and I've certainly stacked my case against him. There's his tweenage target audience, his B-cheese music videos, and the fact that the girls in his videos looks at least five years older than him. Then there's his ridiculous appropriation of terms like "shawty", the use of a swagger coach to manufacture himself into an icon, and the fact that he'll probably grow up to be a fat, ugly, acne-laden reality TV star (puberty is a real wild card). And who could forget my girlfriend's unhealthy obsession with the boy?

I'm in good company in feeling this way. Plenty of self-respecting people across the Western world find Bieber's overnight stardom and prepubescent pitch to be outright intolerable.


That's what makes it downright disturbing that I find Justin Bieber's latest single "Baby" to be, well, damn catchy. The sound hits all the right buttons, upbeat with a likable juxtaposition of high and low voices. The video has a polished look to it, with beautiful lighting and colours, slick camerawork, and a natural feeling groove. Bieber himself has upped his game - leaving behind the one-finger salute of "One Time" and "One Less Lonely Girl", he's picked up some legit dance moves, expanded his repertoire of facial expressions, and styled up. Maybe I should get one of these swagger coaches? There's an easy vibe and contagious energy, from the roll-over pool table move to the pushover break dancers. Then of course, there's the inclusion of Ludacris to offer JB some street cred. All in all, a pretty solid play.

Damn, somebody get this song out of my head so that I can go back to hating on this kid. I think I'll steal his shoes while I'm at it.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Listen, look, feel. Isn't that right?

The following article is written for a satirical publication and is intended for entertainment purposes only. Any similarity to real life events or people is entirely coincidental... except where it's not.

...

With most second year medical students having completed their Art and Science of Clinical Medicine (ASCM) History and Physical (H&P) examinations, controversy has erupted over the competency of these students in performing ASCM-2 exam techniques. The precise exam techniques tested on the H&P are left to the discretion of the examiner. One medical school examiner at a Toronto hospital found patients willing to submit to a male genital exam, as described in the ASCM-2 syllabus.

“What I observed,” reported the examiner, “were physical exam procedures that were completely incorrect. Not only that, but I was shocked at the students’ flagrant and grotesque lack of professionalism.” In recent years, the university has placed a huge emphasis on professionalism as one of the seven CanMEDS roles expected of physicians.

We spoke to the 1T2 social reps, whose names often appear on the MSB 3154 chalkboard as “BJ Social.” They said they were familiar with the techniques used by their classmates which are currently at the centre of this scandal. “From what I heard,” BJ commented, “there was nothing wrong with the technique used in the exam. That’s the way I’ve always seen it done.”

The students who performed the erroneous genital exams are currently being investigated for a major lapse. Meanwhile, the university is working to get to the bottom of how pervasive these faulty techniques are amongst medical students and residents. When medical students were polled as to where they had learned to perform the manoeuvre in question, faculty were shocked to learn that 35% of the class replied that they had learned the technique from the medical drama Grey’s Anatomy, citing insufficient teaching time as the reason for resorting to such means. Noting the risk of such unprofessional behaviour being propagated down the medical hierarchy, this incident has thrown into question the sufficiency of the classic medical education adage of, “See one, do one, teach one.”

...

The above satire was inspired by a true story. In March of 2009, the National Post reported that erroneous intubation technique practiced by many medical students and residents in Alberta had been learned from the TV medical drama ER. The original article can be accessed here.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Year of el Tigre

That would be my year, bitches. Gung hei fat choi!

(Holy smokes, I'm turning 24...)

Sandlot's Mom: I think the tiger is the most beautiful animal.

Andy (to Sandlot): Did you hear that?

Why, yes, I do try to take good care of my mane. No autographs, please.

I heart you

Just in time for Valentine's, Sandlot sent me a link to this clever poster.

Andy: That's right. You are somewhere in my left ventricle, between the left anterior descending artery and the circumflex.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Baby got back

Yesterday, my entry was all about yearbook covers and things "un"-covered. Today, a look at my Queen's ArtSci '08 frosh coveralls. Emblazoned across the rump, the slogan "2008: Best ASUS to Date." While ASUS may stand for "Arts and Science Undergraduate Society" it's provocatively pronounced "asses." In other words, '08 had the best asses to date.

(NB: Based on the number of girls J-Rock has pegged as hot on the UofT campus that were Queen's '08 with me, I think he would agree.)

Andy: I worry about my chronically elevated cortisol levels. I think I might get brain atrophy...

Mello: Amygdala!

Andy: No, more like... cerebral cortex?

Mello: Huh?

Andy: You know, stress hormones affect like five parts of the brain? Amygdala, hippocampus, anterior cingulate gyrus, prefrontal cortex, and...

Mello: Oh! Corpus callosum!

Andy: Oh right, corpus callosum. My bad. I guess the connection is withering between my two brains.

Mello: Hahaha!

Andy: Notice I said two brains, rather than two halves of my brain.

Mello: Oh yeah! The two halves of your brain!

Andy: Nope, two brains. That's how I'm smart and knowledgeable. I have a second brain in my tailbone.

Mello: Is that why your butt is so poofy?

Andy: ...

Andy: No, I just have a big ass.

Oddly enough, the first classmate to ever comment on the size of my ass was Stewie - a fellow bro.

Well, I hope you like it (refer to 5:35). ROFL

Monday, February 8, 2010

Coverage and uncoverage

If you remember, last year I had a number of complaints about the production quality of the medical school yearbook. But as they say, don't knock it if you can't do better. With all that layout snobbery, I should put my money where my mouth is, right? So this year, I enlisted.

Having submitted a smattering of photos (Great Wall, represent), chibi drawings, and the odd piece of poetry to the Art section of last year's yearbook, the editor-in-chief asked me if I could brainstorm up some ideas for cover art. They had apparently come up with some ideas already but still wanted more.

I haven't tried my hand at designing a yearbook cover since my design was rejected in Grade 12 (when Pomme stole one of my graphics and used it on her own winning cover - oh yes, I haven't forgotten). While I'd tried my hand at a variety of layout positions for student publications since then, I was drawing a creative blank when it came to something as open-ended as a yearbook cover.

The best I could come up with was this "yearbook as labcoat" concept that came to me in the shower (where all great thinking is done). I slapped together a rough concept from Googled images, and voila. Okay, I know it's not terribly impressive or original - but I kind of like it (maybe because it's so miniature for now...).

Interestingly, to search for a picture of a labcoat-cum-stethescope (pun intended), I ran a Google Image search for "doctor." Apparently, doctors are quite a fetish item. I can see the appeal, of course - I do look rather dashing in a whitecoat. Just kidding! (not about the dashing part)

On that note though, after our exam today, about half of the Great Wall split off for a lunch party (to which the other half of us were not invited). Because there are festivities downtown tonight to celebrate Kushima's birthday, one of my friends (who is too embarrassed to be named) asked if I wanted to hang out at their place for the afternoon despite the fact that they were attending the lunch party.

Andy: So what am I supposed to do while you're at lunch?

Anon: I don't know. You can hang out - go on the computer!

J-Rock: Oh, do it. You can search for her downloaded porn. Remember *.avi *.flv!

Anon: What?!

Andy: Look at her - she doesn't know how to download porn...

Andy: ...

Andy: It's all streaming, obviously, heh.

J-Rock (to Anon): Bullsh*t. You're telling me you've never downloaded porn?

Anon: No, I have not!

J-Rock: You've never clicked a link to look at naked pictures before?

Anon: .....................okay, I have.

J-Rock: I KNEW IT!!!

J-Rock: That's blog material - that's legit!

Anon: That is not blog material.

Sorry, Anonymous. I blew it (that's what she said) - your secret, that is.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Time is running...!

EXAM DAY TOMORROW!!!

So much studying left, so little time! On the plus side, I managed to swing a pass (70%+) on the 2008 practice exam. Whether we can turn this into reality on game day remains to be seen. My goal for today, obviously, is to provide myself with a knowledge buffer so that the fluke factor doesn't screw me over come tomorrow.

As usual, studying provides me an opportunity to look back at all the interesting doodles I drew on my lecture notes while paying keen attention to the speaker. This particular sketch is modeled after a homeless youth depicted in a video we saw. It reminds us to treat street youth with dignity.

When lectures are particularly exciting, my doodles take on a life of their own. You finish drawing one thing, and time being still abundant, you move onto something else. What gets depicted is an elaborate and often ridiculous scenario. Here, on the left we can see some sort of little girl with a tempting Devil on one side and an Angel on the other. Overhead, flies a paper airplane towards an origami crane (or maybe a pterodactyl). Underfoot a robot beep-beeps towards some kind of machine (HCO = bicarbonate?). On the right, Pikachu sits on a Stop "Werd Up" sign while... yes, Greymon (circa 1999) breathes fire. I'm a geek. Leave me alone.

Back to studying...

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Gah! The Pressure! (A Guest Blog)

Hello Readers of Chronicle!

This is Sandlot speaking, erm.. blogging.

Seeing as how Andy is presently out of commission due to an upcoming mother of an exam, I graciously offered to temporarily take over the reigns of Chronicle in order to fill the void for his avid readers. Plus, there is a heaping amount of scientific evidence suggesting that if Chronicle isn't updated on an almost regular basis, then the world will most likely implode on itself or be overtaken by man-eating mutant dinosaurs. Either way, it's bad news bears if Chronicle isn't updated. So that's why I'm here.

Yeah I know, I'm an effin' hero.

Anyway, initially I was pretty excited when Andy finally gave into my persuasion and granted me the greenlight to deface write on his blog. Although I've spent years hammering out posts on my own blog, this would be my first time guest blogging.

At first, I began racking my brain for some quality blog ideas. Something that would not only live up to the expectations of Andy and his readers, but more importantly, generate enough comments to ensure another future invitation to guest blog on Chronicle.

And then I got nervous.

What if no one likes my post? What if it sucks and no one comments? What if Andy hates what I've written?!

On top of it all, I still didn't know what the hell to write about! Despite having all the material in the world to write about, I couldn't come up with one single thing.

Zilch. Zero. Nada.

It became so bad that by the time the afternoon rolled around, the idea of throwing something together and adding in a few Andy-Approved words like "shennanigans" or "holy frick!" or "awesome" seemed mighty tempting.

Then while I was waiting for my dinner to finish microwaving, it hit me! I would guest blog about how I couldn't think of anything to guest blog about. Awesome idea, right?

So there you have it. My first guest blog and Andy's first guest blogger. I guess it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be (that's what she said).

Oh, and I'm going to tag myself in this post. Just because I can.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Got Milk?

Boy, this almost makes me want to give drinking plain milk a shot. I mean, if it's good enough for Wolverine...?

I found this ad while browsing free comics I picked up at Fan Expo. I didn't know they still made celebrity "Got Milk?" ads - let alone ones this hilarious.



Sandlot: "You should tag me in this post. I'm on the phone while you're writing it so I'm basically a part of it." (Fine, but just because I like you - a lot...)

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Adopt-a-blog

...also known as Andy's Least Popular Chronicles.

So as the author of Chronicle, I get to look back on my writings from a rather unique perspective - that is, from a bird's eye view. I can look down and see a listing of each and every blog entry that I've written, 25 to a page. Being a slave to my blog, then, it fills me with great satisfaction having earned comments on each and every entry. A page with 25 entries and 25 entries with comments is like going on a killing spree in a first-person shooter - you just feel like you've done something right.

Conversely, flipping to pages where comments are lacking on some entries makes me sad. It's like things are going great until someone comes along and shoots you in the head. "Andy's killing spree was ended by Politics."

"What is one to do about these sad entries?" I pondered. However, having recently seen "adopt-an-animal" signs at the zoo or "adopt-a-road" signs on the highway, I had a brilliant idea. I could encourage people to adopt-a-blog entry! Now I realize that adopting an animal or a road is a real disappointment. You don't get to take the animal home and hug it; you don't get a road named after you. Adopting a blog entry is going to be way better. While you may not get to take me or my entries home to hug (unless your name is Sandlot, in which case, hugs are free), you will be duly recognized for your efforts in boosting my meagerly narcissistic ego.

For every undervalued entry that you are the first commenter on, you will receive a tag on this entry as well as the one you commented on (if you're not already). I'll also add a "This entry was adopted by [insert name here]" tag-line to the bottom in recognition of your heroic altruism.

To give everyone a fair chance to boost their label count (good for those who are competing against School, the cold-hearted bitch who rules my life), I'll only recognize five "adoptions" per person per day. Now go forth and multiply. Save the blog entry, save the world.

...

The Chronicle Humane Society abandoned blog entry listing:

- 1 -

Chasing those grey skies (Brutus 04/02/10)

What's it about?

An emo little ditty lamenting school, the weather, and lonely days

Why was it unpopular?
Cryptic, under-appreciated, and small on content

- 2 -

The knockout blow (Brutus 04/02/10)

What's it about?

Concerned over indications that my friends were using frank Google searches to conduct literature reviews, I polled them over their lit search methodology. Thankfully, most came out in favour of proper research databases, which I found gratifying.

Why was it unpopular?
Despite suggesting the idea in the first place, Kushima opted not to comment on the results. Others were just bored of the topic, having participated in the poll already.

- 3 -

Can you keep a secret? (Brutus 04/02/10)

What's it about?
I received a friend request via Window's Live together with discreet advice that should I choose to ignore said request, nobody would be the wiser. I indeed did ignore.

Why was it unpopular?
People obviously didn't find this as amusing as I did.

- 4 -

Love's suicide (Brutus 04/02/10)

What's it about?
After tragically wasting all my blogging time trying to record myself singing, I tried to distract my readers with the "Fight the Power" cat from Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.

Why was it unpopular?
More people need to watch that movie.

- 5 -

The world unseen (Brutus 04/02/10)

What's it about?
A little Flash animation allowing you to zoom through the world from the macroscopic to the microscopic - truly impressive.

Why was it unpopular?
People have a tendency not to click on links.

- 6 -

Showdown of the Scholars (Brutus 05/02/10)

What's it about?
The poll from unpopular entry #2.

Why was it unpopular?
People were already bored of the topic, having commented the day before. Plus, after participating in the poll, they were loathe to put in even more effort and leave a comment.

- 7 -

Watch your mouth (Brutus 05/02/10)

What's it about?
Sexual innuendo.

Why was it unpopular?
Most of my readers aren't that interested in my work friends.

- 8 -

He's got balls (Brutus 05/02/10)

What's it about?
Ballsy pickup maneuver as attempted by the high school student working my lab.

Why was it unpopular?
As with unpopular entry #7, most of my readers aren't that interested in my workmates.

- 9 -

This is where science is made (Brutus 05/02/10)

What's it about?
Would-be entertaining anecdotes from my daily life.

Why was it unpopular?
They would-be entertaining, but clearly they weren't?

- 10 -

Adventures in Ottawa II (Brutus 05/02/10)

What's it about?
My trip to the Diefenbunker and burgers at The Works.

Why was it unpopular?
Insufficient entertainment value, plus would-be commenters had already left notes on my Facebook photo album of the same trip.

- 11 -

Holy rotten brains, Batman! (Brutus 06/02/10)

What's it about?
My summer research supervisor comments on the neurological status of a drunken stranger.

Why was it unpopular?
I should have learned not to blog about work unless it involved me being royally screwed over.

- 12 -

Monster Hunter Failure Unite (Brutus 06/02/10)

What's it about?
Why Monster Hunter Freedom Unite is a disappointment as a video game.

Why was it unpopular?
Nobody cares about video games.

- 13 -

He's back... (Brutus 06/02/10)

What's it about?
Me being unable to contain my enthusiasm for Mass Effect 2.

Why was it unpopular?
Nobody cares about video games.

- 14 -

It ain't over till the fat lady sings (Brutus 06/02/10)

What's it about?
Cheeky comment about my Brain and Behaviour course final.

Why was it unpopular?
Sometimes my humour is just underappreciated.

- 15 -

Beds are for sleeping... (Brutus 06/02/10)

What's it about?
Why Sandlot should stop using her laptop while trying to sleep.

Why was it unpopular?
I think most people missed the "...and adult games" joke.

- 16 -

Get your mind out of the ghetto (Brutus 07/02/10)

What's it about?
Why gangster culture is terrible.

Why was it unpopular?
I dissed up 50 Cent.

- 17 -

The conspiracy theory (Brutus 07/02/10)

What's it about?
An intricately weaved and at times humorous conspiracy theory painting the Conservatives as sneaking manipulators.

Why was it unpopular?
It was about politics. Furthermore, it actually asked for some baseline knowledge of what was going on in politics in order to interpret the majesty of my conspiracy theory.

- 18 -

Star Trek: Go boldly... (Brutus 07/02/10)

What's it about?
My first impressions after watching Star Trek XI.

Why was it unpopular?
Obviously, you felt like my asking you to leave a sentence to comment on my two-sentence blog entry was too much.

- 19 -

The antonym of finesse... (Brutus 07/02/10)

What's it about?
How much I hate the main character from the anime Linebarrels of Iron.

Why was it unpopular?
Blog about anime once? Might get away with it. Twice? Tough luck, Andy.

- 20 -

Pearson to Laguardia (Pt. VI) (Brutus 07/02/10)

What's it about?
Part 6/9 of my New York Trip - Central Park.

Why was it unpopular?
Most people got sick of hearing about New York, plus this entry included video games (which are anathema to comments).

- 21 -

Unforgettable love (Brutus 08/02/10)

What's it about?
My impressions of the Korean film A Moment to Remember.

Why was it unpopular?
You guys don't get as giddy about watching Son Yeh Jin as I do.

- 22 -
New York, New York (Brutus 10/02/10)

What's it about?
I'm going to NYC, bitches!

Why was it unpopular?
You guys are too cold hearted to offer well wishes...

- 23 -

Oh, oh, Gundam 00 (Brutus 08/02/10)

What's it about?
A seriously catchy anime J-pop song.

Why was it unpopular?
Things that my readers don't do: 1) Care about anime 2) Click on links 3) Care what music I listen to.

- 24 -

Terrorists win! (Brutus 08/02/10)

What's it about?
Me freaking out that we were all going to be radiation poisoned by radioactive tritium stolen from Wal-Mart.

Why was it unpopular?
"Cause we still got terrorists right her in the USA. The Bloods and the Crips and the KKK..."

- 25 -

Java Card Open Platform (Brutus 08/02/10)

What's it about?
Greatest album cover ever made; greatest Facebook fad ever.

Why was it unpopular?
Because most people can barely use MS Paint.

- 26 -

Being Canobamanian (Brutus 08/02/10)

What's it about?
Pictures of Obama with Mounties.

Why was it unpopular?
I can only imagine that the maple leaf Obama cookies were just too much for your brains to handle.

- 27 -

It's coming... (Brutus 09/02/10)

What's it about?
The first trailer for Mass Effect 2.

Why was it unpopular?
Despite how it sounds, it was not about sex.

- 28 -

Time well wasted (Brutus 09/02/10)

What's it about?

A day in the life of Andy.

Why was it unpopular?
I think recounting a whole day was just too much for you guys to handle. I've learned to focus in on one amusing anecdote at a time. Attention deficit and all that.

- 29 -

So young, and so untender? (Brutus 09/02/10)

What's it about?
Family docs get the shaft again.

Why was it unpopular?
Tagging Kushima is a waste of time, since he doesn't leave comments anyways.

- 30 -

From Raleigh with Love (Brutus 09/02/10)

What's it about?
My tiny plane to North Carolina.

Why was it unpopular?
Perhaps out of respect for the fact that this was a funerary trip.

- 31 -

In the Spotlight (Brutus 09/02/10)

What's it about?
Son Yeh Jin OMFG!!111oneone

Why was it unpopular?
Korea's most beautiful actress rendered you speechless.

- 32 -

Here comes the train... (Brutus 10/02/10)

What's it about?
Observing strangers ftw.

Why was it unpopular?
People did not appreciate my people-watching insights.

...

Okay, so there are lots of uncommented entries left, but this is taking me forever (I had no idea just how long this was going to take). If somehow all these entries got commented on, I would be more than thrilled.

Taking this look back in time has allowed me to realize that some of these entries are actually quite bad. I'm sorry, and I promise to do better. They can't all be winners, right?

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A Commuter's Paradise


To the tune of the Beatle's Elanor Rigby:

Ah, look at all the transit people
Ah, look at all the transit people

Adam Giambrone picks up to the race for the mayor of a city so big
Lives in a dream
Waits for the metro, wearing a face like the frat boy he is to his core
Who is it for?

All the transit people
Commuting everyday
All the transit people
They're always in my way

Daily commuters writing the words of objection that no one will hear
No one comes near
Look at them pushing, shoving to get on the train that will never be there
What does he care?

All the transit people
Commuting everyday
All the transit people
They're always in my way

Ah, look at all the transit people
Ah, look at all the transit people

Guy with his iPod blasting so loud I can hear it, it's always the same
He has no shame
Shut down the system, jumping to the platform at rush hour to get to the grave
No one was saved

All the transit people
Commuting everyday
All the transit people
They're always in my way
...

This morning proved another arduous commute. Traffic started out particularly bad, and I was a bit worried I might end up a couple of minutes late for class ("Where did all these people come from, and why do they move so slow?" I lamented to myself). It became a moot point though, as the entire subway system lurched to a crawl due to some unspecified disturbance at Davisville. My subway car delivered me at a snail's pace to my destination - half an hour late for class (taking twice the duration it should have).

I found the back door to the classroom shut tightly, and not being too keen on walking in 30-40 minutes late through the front of the classroom, I decided to kick back for half an hour at the local Starbucks. Sipping on my Chai latte and nibbling at a chocolate chip cookie, I pondered just how shoddy the TTC really is.

It's come to the point where I think that the TTC is delayed almost as often as it is on time. Such unreliable service is really unacceptable, although I've been told that transit can be similarly unpredictable in other cities. The TTC has taken a lot of flak in recent weeks with their unpopular fare increase, sleeping fare collectors, and frequent delays. Adam Giambrone, TTC chair and potential mayoral candidate for the city of Toronto, has publicly apologized for the TTC's public relations fiasco.

Better communication and public relations, they say, are what the TTC needs. After all, the TTC is run mostly by engineers and sometimes they forget to be cordial to their patrons. Well, congeniality is all well and good, and I agree that it's proper to keep us informed of delays. But that's not going to spare you my wrath when the TTC is delayed every freaking day.

To add some emphasis to the point, after my dreadfully delayed morning commute, I took the subway back home after lunch - skipping my afternoon seminar in the hopes of getting some extra studying done. My train went out of service and kicked me off at Sheppard station. My commute disrupted twice in one day? TTC fail. If the TTC is run by engineers, then shouldn't it at least run smoothly?

TTC: "Sorry our reliability is tragic, but at least we let you know."

Andy: "F*ck off, Giambrone."