Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Asian grocery stores are a beautiful thing

We have been seriously missing Thai food lately, and despite our best efforts to make it at home, we always lacked what we need to make the delicious cuisine perfect: Thai bird chillies.  The regular super markets have only jalapeno peppers, serrano peppers, and twice per year, (if you’re lucky) you can find Scotch Bonnet peppers (habenero chillies).  The bird chillies from Thailand have a great flavour, and are just a little bit less spicy than the habeneros, but have WAY more kick than the jalapenos.  Neither of the other chillies will substitute.  Sure, you can add more jalapenos to accomplish the spice factor, but the FLAVOUR is wrong. 

Anyway, we took a trip to the Eastern Market.  We have found bird chillies there before, but they were often dark green and no matter how long we left them sitting around, would rot before turning red.  And if we used them green, the flavour was all wrong and the heat just wasn’t there.  Poor us.   This time was different.  Thanks be to Raptor Jesus, we found a big ole bag of RED bird chillies.  These things looked as good as or better than the ones we could buy at the market in Thailand.   See for yourselves:

chillies Anyway, Monday Matt made me a red curry (my personal favourite of the curries), and tonight is noodle bowl night.

Raptor Jesus, bless the Eastern Market.RaptorJesus copy

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Thinking of taking the bus?

Don’t.  Before you even think about taking a Saskatoon city bus, stop.   Take it from me, unless you absolutely have to, try not to.  I have seriously had it with this transit system.  Every year, the city wonders why people don’t love the environment enough to take the bus.  Then they cut funding to public transit to build a new art gallery, make the routes longer, have them run only every 30 minutes and don’t build a heated bus depot downtown for all the people that DO use the bus.  I have spent so many days this winter waiting for a bus in –30 weather for over 20 minutes, because the bus schedules are such that there is only one bus that goes where I need to go, and it only comes every 30 minutes.

Today was the last straw.  After much deliberation, I readied myself for school.  Lately, I have a hard time motivating myself to attend class, so once I have decided I’m going, I like to get there.  My bus (#12) comes by the stop nearest my house at 6 minutes past the hour, and 36 minutes past. Since it is only two blocks to walk, I usually leave my house on the hour, so today I left at 2:00 pm.  Approaching 7th Ave, I see my bus (the only one that comes through my area) fly past.  My cell phone clock reads 2:01.  I run around the corner, hoping he stops at the scheduled stop, and waits the FIVE MINUTES that he is ahead of schedule, but of course, he does not.  I am livid.  I dragged myself out of the house with every intention of attending my ONLY class today, only to have my effort rendered completely unnecessary, since I would now have to wait 30 minutes for the next bus to come by, and I would end up missing half the class anyway.  The worst part is, this happens more often than the bus is on time.  “So leave earlier if it’s always early” you are saying.  It was –25 today, so if my bus decides to be on time this day, I end up waiting for 20 in the freezing cold anyway. 
On my angry walk home, I called the Saskatoon transit offices.  After waiting through a ridiculously long automated message, I am given the option to press 0 to speak to a representative.  Press 0 I did, ready to rip someone’s head off.  “Call ended.” reads my phone.  So I call back, press 0, wait… Silence.  “Call ended.”  Each time I try to transfer to an operator, my call is dropped.  I tried this half a dozen times and have given up.

On days where Matt takes the car to work, I can’t simply go home, hop in the car and drive to school.  And luckily, today I did not have an exam.  Equally lucky is the fact that I don’t depend on this awful transit system to get to work.  I am offended with the amount of bullshit that Saskatoon residents tolerate, and in a time when we should be pushing “green” alternatives like there is no tomorrow, the City of Saskatoon somehow makes public transit MORE inconvenient than driving and trying to find a place to park at the city’s busiest locations.  The fare keeps going up, and the service does not get better.  Why don’t students and residents demand more?  Especially as students, when we are FORCED to have a bus pass included with our student fees, we should be demanding something that is worth our money, not taking what little is offered. 

And now for the apathy: If I were going to be in University next year, I might try to do something about this.  But it is my hope that March and April are my last two months using the bus system.   Sayonara, bitches.

In other news, the kitties were perplexed by a new visitor last week:

 

Also,  Minnie is ready to burst!  Expect a birth announcement any day now!!   Please leave your guesses as to how many baby Meezies we will find in there and predict whether Meez will attempt to eat the kittens once they are born!

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Sunday, February 21, 2010

Throwing in the towel

I find myself becoming increasingly apathetic…toward everything and everyone. I used to be very passionate about my opinions and try to force them on everyone. Now when someone disagrees with me, no matter how illogical they are, I find myself saying something along the lines of, “Meh” or “Ok, then,” and letting it go. Maybe I’m mellowing out and becoming less idealistic because I’m maturing or getting older, but my apathy extends past simply allowing others to be wrong. I actually sat through a full hour of Glenn Beck interviewing Sarah Palin.

2010 Olympics are in Canada? BFD.
An English 110 prof gives me a 62 on my paper? I say nothing.
Someone parked their pedo-van in my driveway and unplugged my car so they could plug in? No biggie.
The City of Saskatoon is building a $60 million art gallery, but can’t clear snow from residential streets or run city buses more often than every 30 minutes? No emails
Parliament is being a bunch of useless, do-nothing assholes? I didn’t even write a bunch of angry letters to my MP!
Another CSI series is on? Oh well.
Even when the university forced me to put my Linguistics degree on hold, did I get full of rage and go on an angry-letter writing spree, classic Jacquie-style?? Nope.

Am I losing my edge, or just realizing the futility of using logic and reason to make a point to people who respect neither? What happens now? The Jacquie you all know and love is scrappy and sassy, what if she has mellowed out and starts letting things go? What if Saskatoon residents go the rest of their lives without angry notes on their badly-parked cars or honked horns and a middle finger out the moon roof?

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Inspiration

I feel the need to explain that the idea for shenanigans with Antonio in the house was inspired by my years of living with awesome roommates.  I happened to catch a few of these excellent pranks with a camera, although most were captured with my heart. (awwww)  The following photos may be disturbing to those who do not understand them.

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Blogger is the worst for dealing with individual photos. I did the best I could.  By the way, the arrangement of the photos looks nothing on the blog like it looks in my publisher program. Live Writer Preview function FAIL

 

 

Monday, February 8, 2010

Meet Antonio Banderduck

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Shortly after Christmas, we moved everything around at work to prep for a big sale.  All the movement surfaced a lot of old merchandise that had been hiding behind other items and at the back of shelves.  Most of it was crap, but there was one gem: a blue wooden duck.  This duck spoke to me instantly.  As soon as I saw him on the clearance carts, I knew that I loved him.  Sure, there’s some paint missing where his neck was clearly broken and glued together, and his beak is scratched up.  His foot is falling off and overall, this blue duck needed some love.  Already marked to 75% off, my supervisor informs me that the next time markdowns come around, this duck will have to be written off and destroyed. But I hauled an FIV+ cat all the way back from Thailand, who better to rescue an animal from certain destruction?  On the other hand, it’s a broken down wooden duck… what am I going to do with it?   I’m not one for knick-knack objects.  Initially, I decided against buying the duck.  It just wasn’t practical. 

Every shift I worked for the next 6 weeks, I would catch sight of the duck, still sitting on the clearance cart and he would make me smile.  This duck put me in a good mood every day, and I couldn’t risk it any longer.  This duck was coming home with me.  Unfortunately, by the time I came to that decision, my boss closed the tills before I could make the purchase, so I put the duck on the back counter to hang out for me until the next day.  The next day, I came in to get the duck, but he was gone!  

No one working that day knew anythingIMGP3378 about what had become of the duck, and I went home defeated, convinced that the store manager had seen the sad-looking duck that just never seemed to leave, decided no one would buy him, and wrote him off to be destroyed.  I was distraught, but couldn’t forget about my beloved duck.  I called in to work that night to double check.  The manager on duty knew exactly what I was talking about, as she had moved him from the back counter, but put him back on the wrong shelf.  Antonio Banderduck was back from the dead!  I had him in the back room and went in to pick him up the next day.  Anyway, now Antonio will assist me in household shenanigans.  Of course, the cats were the first ones to suffer:
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Above: Antonio Banderduck’s permanent home when not participating in hijinx.
Left: Meez and Minnie are caught with Antonio, note Meez’s discomfort with the duck’s proximity to him.  He freezes up and has no idea what to do.
Below: Meez and SeƱor Banderduck: BFF

 

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My apologies for the poor quality of the photos, but the moment had to be captured as quickly as possible.  Stay tuned for Antonio Banderduck’s future adventures!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Fridge Magnets – Instalment II

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I think the baby one is referring to the kittens we are expecting.  Minnie has been nesting her big baby belly all over the house:

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  The countdown is on, we’re expecting at the end of February!  Fuck.