Sunday, September 29, 2002

OH MY GOD i can't believe that i'm friends with a SAMMY HAGAR lover.


yesterday was my first birthday. it involved photography, monks, nuns, castles, accordians, candles, getting lost (still), dutch people, music, tomato soup, and women with cakes and flowers on trams.

alas, the cake was not for me. but the story that i told meself in my mind was so very beautiful that i could forgive her. i'm sure she had a lovely time last night.

yesterday was also a national holiday. which was just like any other day, except that the trams had czech flags waving at the front of them. and there were a few fireworks after it got dark.

but i figured that the fireworks were to celebrate my special day, anyways.

hope everyone else's unbirthday was lovely as well.

today: music festival at the castle. bonding time with med students. or just their cat, one of the two. possibly more tomato soup.

it's a thrill a minute here in prague...

Thursday, September 26, 2002

why can't more people be online when i am? as in, anyone? it's quite strange being restricted to online time by the hours of the computer lab at school. hopefully there will be access in the dorms soon. then i can go online when other people are awake in the world. but i do so miss chatting with people instead of doing homework.

oh, tragedy! my life is so hard..

i do, however, find great pleasure in the fact that i will be brought back to many a home around the entire world, through the magic of tourist photography. i have most certainly made my way into thousands of pictures at this point, and i will be forever be That Girl In The Background, enshrined in someone's prized photo collection hidden under their coffee table, only brought out to bore unsuspecting guests as they sit and sip tea (earl grey, chai, or green, depends on what part of the world, i suppose), catching up on the past few months of their lives out of duty and habit rather than actual desire. how very exciting.

(i suppose i could also become angry that so many people are stealing a little bit of my soul, i suppose. but i never had much of one to begin with, so i haven't really noticed the loss too much.)
"Seek moderation in all things" is usually a sound principle, but in the coming weeks it won't be for you Libras. You'll have a cosmic mandate to replace it with "More is always better" or "Only too much is enough." It'll be your sacred duty to pursue extravagance that might be self-indulgent at any other time. I'll even go so far as to say that it will be a sin for you not to stir up as many fun exploits and joyous liberations as possible. That's why I suggest that you tell four different people four different dates for the anniversary of your coming into the world -- say September 28, October 4, October 11, and October 18. Then throw yourself a birthday party on each of those days.

i'm a huge fan of this horoscope. and i fully intend to follow its suggestion. presents and well-wishes are gleefully accepted for all four dates (plus the official date, october 6th), at this address or on this telephone. also: if anyone has any suggestions as to where to spend my birthday (as in, which country nearby the czech republic), give me a shout.

Wednesday, September 25, 2002

i've met a few displaced americans (no displaced canadians yet) who've been here a long time, and the one thing they all have in common is that they tend to reach a point where they start to become a little bitter towards the world and complain that they've started to pick up on the czech attitudes towards life. i'm not entirely certain what they mean, but i have a vague understanding. at any rate. despite the fact that there are some terribly wonderfully friendly czech people that i've met out here, yesterday i had my fill of the bitter czechs. everyone i spoke to was curt and/or downright rude when i was trying my best to speak their language anyways. maybe it's because i was extremely sick. maybe it's because my grasp of the language is still terrible and i know that, so i tend to mumble a bit more. but every time i left them behind i was busy cursing them and their family.

but then marcia and i went to heaven and back last night (by way of orchestras, chopin, rachmaninov, and concertos), so all was well. i had tingles all over.

and the friendly maids at the dorm today tried their best to tell me to drink some lemon (citron) tea (caj) and honey (med? can't recall now) to get better. so not every czech person's an asshole.

just the people working at the markets.

Tuesday, September 24, 2002

sick as a dog.

cold wind outside.

probably skipping class tonight. i should be doing a presentation, and i don't think i'd be able to do that anyways. thursday, it shall be!

- saw lots of bones and lots of ruins. quite fascinating.
- discovered that Archduke Franz-Ferdinand had a personality when we realised we were exploring his old castle.
- saw a huge collection weapons and armour. again, quite fascinating.
- played with children.
- caught a cold that's not been made better by sitting up late chatting with people.

was going to upload photos today, then realised that i can't seem to make ftp work properly here. any advice is welcome.

for now:
off to make soup.
my sister just posted something on her page, but i'm not sure if her address is a secret still or not, so rather than link to it, i'll just copy and repost. she's also posted a few recipes for me, as i've been sick in bed for the past 24 hours. at least now i have soup recipes, just in time for the rest of the roommates to get ill. mmmmm potato leek soup. however. i prolly even posted this on my page at one point, but it still makes me laugh. so. rebecca writes:

Sep 23, 2002
bogart the black

Because I am an icq history junkie, and because I finished my paper a few minutes early, I was reading past correspondances between my sister and myself. I laughed so hard I thought I'd share the conversation fromt he night of February 10/02:

whither: so daniel was black humphrey bogart tonight..

Specca: come again?

whither: can't come again. can't read what i wrote.

Specca: explain black humphrey bogart. My interest has been captured. I am intrigued.

whither: oh. wearing his black coat and my black fedora. and then he walked funny. and proclaimed that he was black humphrey bogart. and he fought aliens. and then when he was looking through my calendar of movies, he got to the maltese falcon, he read out "...with black humphrey bogart as sam spade, fighting aliens and saving the world..."
S:"it doesn't say that."
D:"no, but it should. i know there's a movie with black humphrey bogart out there somewhere!"

oh daniel, how i miss thee...

Saturday, September 21, 2002

wait, i never mentioned sean connery on here at all, did i. huh. ah well. {g}
so this is what was filming the other day. (thank you mark!) i could post pictures, but i didn't remember to save them to a floppy disk before i left the house today. what a shame.

last night wendy, sanni and i went for a bbq at michal's house with his family. and they are the nicest, friendliest, sweetest people i have met out here. they have two children, both blonde and blue-eyed and super hyper with guests around and quite shy about speaking english even if they know some. michal told us that we had to try some "typical czech drinks". both pretty strong. starting to get used to one, as i'd tried it before when our czech teacher got our class a round of shots on our last day. (i'd spell it if i could remember what it's called. bechrovka?) at any rate. after the burning sensation left my mouth, they weren't all that bad. {g} (those AND a glass of wine and i wasn't affected in the least. nor did i gag. yay me! /dork) at any rate, when it got late they still wanted us to stay awhile, but we had to leave. but not before it was decided that they were going to take the three of us outside prague on sunday to explore some other part of the czech republic. which is wonderful because we get out of the city and don't have to worry about busses or figuring it all out, and we get to go with czech people rather than being fullblown tourists, and we get to go with children which always makes it fun, and life is good. we're all really looking forward to this.

tomorrow we're going to explore kutna hora (both the town and the ossuary) with the school group. very excited about that.

tonight we're seeing carmen at the national theatre. we're paying $2 canadian to see it. almost had to pay $4, but fortunately the ISIC card gets us a discount. yeah, we're being spoilt. {g}

yesterday i got a pair for good shoes for super-cheap. sanni was supposed to buy things, not me. after all that she didn't even end up buying her shoes, either. did you know that Bata is actually a czech store, and the founder of the company emigrated to canada at some point? which explains why wendy and i weren't fazed to see Bata all over while the americans gushed about it. so very strange.

my only complaint about things is that i also found out that we actually do have neighbours last night, only because they like to watch annoying east indian sitcoms rather loudly at 2am and don't answer the door when you knock to ask them to turn it down. fortunately blair had a pair of earplugs that actually let me sleep in this morning as well.

so life isn't exciting at the moment, if a highlight is getting earplugs from a roommate. but it's fun, so that's good enough for the moment. {g}

Friday, September 20, 2002

so strange. i'm sitting in the computer lab at the school, and there's a fellow in the corner whose screen faces me as well, and he's casually looking through porn site ads. and keeping them on the screen, rather than closing the windows. looks like he's chatting with someone about them all as well. it's as though he's trying to find the perfect site, not at all concerned about the fact that anyone can see the screen.

somehow i don't think that would ever happen in the SFU computer labs... {g}

Thursday, September 19, 2002

after reading through tavie's, nicole's and serra's lists, i have to agree - they're actually interesting to read. won't say that much about mine, but i have the time so here we go.

100 things about sarah:
1. i was born in new westminster, bc, a suburb of vancouver.
2. i've lived in two different houses, roughly five blocks away from each other. i still like the older house better.
3. no, i lie. at the moment i live in prague, out in the czech republic. i've actually started calling the dorms "home" these days without thinking.
4. currently, my city is better than your city.
5. the only other place i have ever referred to as "home" offhand is brent's place, and i didn't even realise i was doing it.
6. my favourite thing about our old house was the hazelnut tree in the front yard.
7. when i was six i slipped off the monkey bars and broke my arm (in three places, shattering my wrist and elbow). since then i've never been much of a fan of the monkey bars.
8. but for some reason i loved the bar in gymnastics for a long while.
9. during my last year in gymnastics, i really started to like the beam and the floor, though.
10. i quit gymnastics technically because i had bad knees, but really because i was too apathetic to work to become more flexible.
11. i quit piano at the grade 10 level because i just wasn't into that whole practicing thing.
12. i plan on going back to get my grade 10 and ARCT when i get back to canada.
13. i can sight-read music relatively well. but i always wished that i could improvise or actually play off the top of my head. that's something i just can't do.
14. i'm the oldest of four children.
15. when we were younger, david was always my favourite brother. daniel somehow didn't count in my mind because he was too young. but i loved him anyways.
16. my sister and i never really got along until she was in high school. coincidentally, we had aussie friends out here that year who did things with the both of us. i think the two might be related. now we get along most of the time.
17. my sister can be one of the coolest people in the world. so can my little brother. god, we're an amazing family.
18. i met my my best friend when i was in grade eight. we got to know each other more in grade nine. the first time she invited me over to her house for just the two of us to hang out, i was surprised to find out that no one else was coming over.
19. according to some astrological book i was reading one day, her and i could have a fantastic sex life, although the actual relationship could be strained at times due to neither of us wanting to rock the boat and actually point out any problems. too bad we're not sleeping together.
20. while i still scoff at astrology, i read my horoscope regularly, and have to admit that i'm very much a libra.
21. i always felt a fair bit of snobbery in being a libra.
22. i also contend that early-october is the best time of year. particularly for birthdays. the air is cooler but it's usually still sunny, there's leaves all around, a bit of frost in the mornings, it's gorgeous.
23. i never had names for my toys unless they were given to me with them. despite that fact, if someone asked their name i'd make one up for them. i'd just never remember it.
24. i think that keeping people nameless and faceless can be one of the most dehumanizing and insulting things people can do.
25. despite that, i think that too much is attributed to surface attributes, such as names and appearances.
26. i find it hard to have a concrete opinion about many things. i always see merit to both sides. for this reason i often appear rather wishy washy. really, i'm too busy contemplating the opinions presented to me.
27. that, and i also don't want to look like a fool when i know everyone else is smarter than i am, so best keep my mouth shut.
28. i always mock the stupid people in my head, though.
29. i know they're not all like it, but i cannot stand Stupid Americans. and i am surrounded by far too many of them these days.
30. but i have to admit that i actually like some of the said Stupid Americans anyways.
31. i am so pathetically dependent on email, text messages, and phone conversations that i embarass meself sometimes.
32. though if someone claims to be a bigger internet junkie (and is not a complete computer nerd) i'm always quick to prove that i am the bigger junkie.
33. i can forget to eat for prolonged periods of time. after awhile you just stop noticing the hunger pains.
34. it is for this reason that i refuse to go on a fast. my eating abilities would be put way too far out of whack.
35. i don't like taking medicine. the idea of foreign chemicals racing through my bloodstream frightens me.
36. and yet i eat skittles all the time.
37. ironically, i also choose the organic food over the crappy copies, and the natural sugar-free toothpaste over any general drugstore kind.
38. i have never been drunk. largely out of stubbornness.
39. i feel like a bit of a weirdo in prague, where beer flows freely at all hours of the day.
40. beer makes me gag and gives me headaches, though. i think i'm allergic to it. so i feel i have an excuse not to be drinking it with everyone else.
41. my current boyfriend is the only one i've ever had. i never really wanted one before. didn't plan on having one now. was simultaneously somewhat embarassed and somewhat proud of being an oddball in never having one. (coincidentally, he's a taurus just like jodi...)
42. i may have just thrown all that out of whack, however. none of my real talents are actually useful. update: things are dandy.
43. i want to be artsy and eclectic. i rarely think i am, however.
44. i'm rather attached to the idea of me being a photographer, however.
45. i'm thinking of going to school for photography and art in general after i finish this degree. i don't really know that it would achieve anything though. i'm still no artist.
46. i don't consider meself to be a writer either. that was always someone else's bag. i still want to write a novel sometime, despite its guaranteed suckiness.
47. i was always quite proud that i was the best in everything in elementary school.
48. when i was in grade three the other SAC and i had a drawing contest so that we could prove for once and for all who was the better drawer. i called foul when the requirements were to draw the best copy of Garfield. i didn't do cartoons and i definately didn't draw copies of actual pictures. the issue was never really resolved.
49. my middle name is annemarie, btw. and my last is caufield.
50. caufield, as in a typo'd version of the name descendent of irish royalty. we're peasants and i love it. you know we had more fun.
51. the aunt who married my father's brother wants to change the spelling of our name to make it "Caulfield" once again because she wants to have the affinity to royalty. i'll reserve my opinions on that, lest they ever come across my page.
52. i only have three cousins, and i don't know any of them well. but i'm envious of the oldest one's talent. he's my age and he's good at everything he tries. alas, he's also a swell guy, so you can't hate him. damn.
53. i'm not sure if the other cousins are snobs or if our family (the kids at least) are snobs. but we've never become close.
54. i obsess over things too often and too easily.
55. usually they blow over. sometimes they don't.
56. my dream is to go to the airport with $20 and a passport in my pocket and take a plane to somewhere else in the world without having anything else planned.
57. i do pretty well by meself. i like not feeling like i rely on other people.
58. i do rely on other people, though. i need people around me, most of the time.
59. i miss brent's cat, nacho, more than i miss our cats at home.
60. i want to get a cat here in prague, but it would be mean to keep it locked in a dorm all the time.
61. if i were forced to choose between losing my sight and losing my hearing, i'd lose my sight. despite the fact that i love photography, film, reading, and art, i would go mad if i couldn't hear music anymore.
62. i'm rather proud of my musical tastes. having someone tell me they're strange or eclectic makes my day, even though i know people who have even better taste than i do.
63. the same goes with my clothing style.
64. when i was a kid, we only listened to CBC or QMFM - classical or easy listening. but mostly classical. i honestly didn't even think to see if there were any other stations on the radio until i was twelve.
65. i miss my radio show back home at CJSF.
66. i thrive in meeting new people. but at the same time i often have to be dragged out to group getogethers.
67. when i was a kid i wanted to be a traffic-director for construction sites just so that i could wear the orange hardhat.
68. i wanted to be a paleontologist for awhile. partially because i always got to explain what that word meant to the other kids when i said it. but mainly because i thought dinosaurs were cool.
69. i took a course on dinosaurs a few semesters back. it was a ton of fun. it didn't feel like real class. i don't think i learned all that much though, because i felt like i knew a lot of it already from when i was a kid. i didn't get the best mark in the world in that class, but i didn't care either. i was studying dinosaurs!
70. i have no idea what i'm going to be when i grow up.
71. i hate it when people ask you what you're going to do after university.
72. i especially hate it when my parents ask me that.
73. i could never really decide on a favourite colour, so a lot of the time i just followed what the popular consensus was.
74. when my sister and i were young, a lot of people mistook us for twins. i still don't know why. but my mom dressing us in matching clothes in different colours (i was red, rebecca was blue) probably didn't help.
75. i haven't watched television much since i spent a summer in alberta. we didn't have cable. i don't miss it that much, although i'm sorry that i don't get to see my favourite shows more often in reruns.
76. when i was fourteen a friend introduced jodi and i to monty python. oddly, we were the ones who became obsessed with it, and subsequently became the ones with odder taste. pam's still pretty strange though. but i think our sense of humour is better.
77. i can be a damn snob at times, and i know that i have absolutely no right to be one.
78. i have four piercings. i had to take out my tongue piercing, which i miss terribly. i love having them done, but i don't know where else to get one at this point.
79. i sorta want a tattoo. just something small. except that there's absolutely nothing i can think of that means enough to have it permanently drawn onto my skin.
80. i have a very small dent in my forehead from banging my head badly in the same place multiple times as a child.
81. i tend to injure the left side of my body more.
82. for nearly a year, i've had to deal with a pinched nerve in my left elbow. there's not much to be done about it. the outside of my hand and arms tend to feel asleep most of the time, though at times it worsens to become quite painful. don't know what to do about it though.
83. for some reason i always felt that having stitches was like having chicken pox: once you have it you won't have it again. this always worried me because i've never had stitches.
84. i'm often intimidated by cool people. and then i just become mute and piss meself off because i can't think of anything interesting to say.
85. when i die i will be killed by a passing car, due to my jaywalking.
86. i wish i knew more about everything.
87. i find it strange that people seem to mistake me for being older than i am a fair amount.
88. i find it even stranger that people seem to think i'm confident and sure of meself.
89. i find the sound of knuckles being cracked to be the worst sound in the entire world.
90. but i think that thunder rumbling (or an explosion that sounds similar) is one of the most beautiful sounds.
91. my dad has always wanted me to be a lawyer.
92. my mom has always wanted me to be a good lutheran.
93. i'm neither.
94. even so, i feel an affinity towards people when i find out that they're lutheran. but not lawyers.
95. i don't know what i believe in, to be completely honest.
96. i have been craving steamed green beans with spike and onions in 'em for a few days. i have fresh green beans sitting in the fridge at home. i've been too lazy to actually cook them.
97. i've grown used to not hearing english spoken around me anymore. i'm starting to really like it.
98. i want to explore every part of the world before i die. so long as i plan on coming back to vancouver, because i do rather like it there.
99. i wish that i could be more interesting.
100. i really just spent the time on this in hopes of being online long enough to catch someone else coming online on the other side of the world. it didn't happen.

Wednesday, September 18, 2002

if i had a super power, it would be the ability to completely fuck things up without even trying. or, even better, by going at it with good intentions, only to have everything blow up in my face.

oh wait, i'm already good at that one.

Tuesday, September 17, 2002

czech monks are quite the rabble-rousers, it seems. last night we went for a walk near the monastery near the dorms. the view, by the way, is spectacular. i'll have to put some of the photos on disk to upload them soom. but i digress. so we were right below the monastery at the sort of viewpoint, looking over the city. behind us, there was lively, old-time-jazzy piano music being played, and murmurs of party conversation floating out the window. at one point there was a snippet that actually made its way to where we were. there was an american woman's voice, and she was talking to a monk right at the window (we could see him, at least. for all i know the woman could have been a nun, i really don't know).

"if i ever see you in a tuxedo, i think i'd piss my pants laughing!"

and that was it. i have no clue what lead up to it, i have no clue what the hell was going on. we're starting to wonder if that's really a monastery or a brothel in disguise. they did sound like they were having quite a party. it's a shame we weren't invited.
addendum to the comment about too many fucking happy couples in prague:

it's not a reflection of my bitterness. well, not entirely at least. no, there actually are way too many of them. they all meander through all the streets, rapturously in love with each other, thinking that they're in the most romantic city they've ever been in, getting in the way, and generally being annoying.

though the annoyance is also partially because they're just so much more open with their affection out here. we walked through one garden yesterday where there were at least eight couples playing lick-the-tonsil. and usually i'm all for public displays of affection, because it's not quite as common out in vancouver. and i really don't care about people getting a room, actually.

okay, maybe i am just bitter. they still always get in the way when you're trying to actually walk somewhere in particular.

Monday, September 16, 2002

just so it's not a huge surprise, michelle has declared that she's getting me all pregnant on brent's ass. sounds like a plan to me.
i was going to delete things but i decided against it. because i know you care.
emails from parents sounding overly enthusiastic and asking about menial things in between telling you to send postcards and emails to people you don't need to be told to mail things to is really annoying.
didn't end up being seduced. plans changed. prolly had more fun anyways.

saturday was the Music Beats for Local Nazi music fest. Be Kind to your Local Nazis... (watch the clip if you can.) it was an anti-racism music fest with lots of good music and djs, lots of cheap food and drinks, a huge collection of punk sorts, and tons of fun. oh, and if you got there early enough, it was all free, so a group of us spent the day there. they had reggae, east indian electronica, drum'n'bass, so much stuff. unfortunately the headliner was Chumbawumba, so i can now say (with great dismay) that i have seen Chumbawumba live. we tried to leave that stage as quickly as possible, but still got to hear some of the music. to make up for it, however, there were firejugglers and people juggling glowing balls after dark. the smaller stages had the better music, really. one, the lounge, had big orange and white sofas spread all over, but was still playing lively music. in fact, saw the best group there. i think they were "Mersey", but i'm really not sure. at any rate, they had a dj spinning the music, all quite good in and of itself, but then there were two more people accompanying the music with sax and trumpet, adding a lot of jazziness to it all. it was awesome.

the whole thing took place on an island on the river, and during the day we hung out on the riverband. later on, after it got darker (and while sanni and i waited for chumbawumba to either leave the stage or fall victim to a freak electrical accident), the hammocks they'd set up were free, so the two of us took 'em over, just lay there watching the stars, listening to music coming out of the lounge tent, looking at all the trees flooded in purple, blue, orange, and yellow lights.

also: i have never seen so many dogs at a festival. i love it. same with children. they were everywhere. also: so many punky hairstyles. i need to do something to mine. i just can't decide what. maybe dreads. maybe just some strange cut. they were doing hair at the festival, but i couldn't decide then. piercing seems to be huge here as well - at least among the people i'd rather be around. bigger than in vancouver, i'd be tempted to say, though that could just be that they're just in larger groups out here.

anyways. this all sounded much better and more refined in my head before i got here. but i'm tired and i missed my first class because of traffic jams and i've been mildly depressed of late, so i really don't care. is there anything more to say? having access to my music once again is making things a little better. magnetic fields and quasi appear to be the picks of the while, though nora's found a Handsome Boy Modelling School which is getting its fair share of playtime as well.

everyone says that it's harder to be the person left behind, listening to whatever's going on, friend or what-have-you, as the other person's busy exploring everything new.

i'd beg to differ.
there are too many happy couples in prague.

Saturday, September 14, 2002

off to see a film called "i will seduce you". not really sure what it's about. just that it's czech with english subtitles. which of course pretty much guarantees that it will be fucked up.

wendy, the other canadian, has taken a great liking to the phrase, "Jak se mate?"

it means "How are you?"

the way she says it it sounds like some lecherous old man trying to pick up young girls. it sounds terribly dirty and wrong.

considering the title of the film, should any character in it ask another how they're doing, i do believe i will end up laughing hysterically. fortunately wendy's coming to the film as well, so i won't be the only one.

so. jak se mate??
at That Grand Ol' Place where i worked before coming out here, there was an ex-czech fellow named p___ k____. p___ rocks. first he told me a ton of stories about how wonderful Prague was, helping me actually get excited about things. then he translated documents into czech for my visa application because he's just that kind of guy who'll do things like that. then a few days ago he emailed my father with the name and number of a friend of his here in prague who works at a computer company. today i went to meet him. turns out he's actually the head of the company (which made people quite impressed with me when i got there and mumbled some name that i wasn't even certain about. "well there's only one michael here, but.. no!"). turns out he's a really friendly guy. turns out he likes skiing so much that he has a map of the czech mountain ranges in his office, which was the first thing he showed off to me when he invited me in. turns out he was concerned when i didn't come by yesterday, and emailed p___ again to tell him to encourage me to come visit. turns out he's more than happy to invite me and my friends places (if i'd come by yesterday, i could have gone to their cabin near bohemia with them this weekend. as it stands, i've been invited for a barbeque next week and i'll have to come to the cabin some other time.). turns out that he just happens to deal in IBM computers, so if i have any troubles with mine, he'll be able to help.

as he showed me out the door, he told me that he would email peter, who would then email my father, and tell him that i'd come visited him absolutely drunk with a skinhead rabble-rousing boyfriend so that they would both know that i was off to a good start.

i like michael already. but i really owe p___ bigtime.

crazy czechs....

Friday, September 13, 2002

"Love is a snowmobile racing across the tundra and then suddenly it flips over, pinning you underneath. At night, the ice weasels come."
- Matt Groening

i just noticed that quote at the end of a friend's email. it made me laugh. i thought i'd share.

czech intensive is over. next week we start proper classes. they've added a photography course, largely due to my pestering. the great thing about it is that it's being offered at the same time as two other classes that i really want to take. could things be any better?

at the moment i have six courses that i want to take. i was planning on doing all the ECES courses that looked intriguing now, so that next semester i could take courses through the actual university faculties. the problem is that, well, i've got six, though three of them conflict. there's another czech language course. there's the photo course. there's the czech film course. there's the czech architecture course, which i have been told is being taught by the best prof, and really want to take. there's the ex-pat american literature course which again, i have been told is excellent. there's czech literature with an emphasis on modernism and the loss of self. the photo course conflicts with the film and architecture courses. so maybe i should drop photography, but i'm the one carrying around a camera everywhere and the one who's been wanting to do a photo course for eons. but then again i don't know if it would be worth taking, because i think most other people signed up are beginners, and may not even have decent cameras, so i don't know if the course would be a waste of time. maybe i should just get access to the darkroom for meself and do photography that way. maybe take a course through the fine arts department come spring.

maybe all the stupid people signed up in the photo class at the moment should drop it.

maybe everything should be shuffled about in order to conform to my needs.

i'm all for that idea.

but do i take a full five courses now when i've been told by everyone who's been out here that they're super laid-back and easy, or do i lighten up the courseload? if i'm busy working all semester, it means i be able to travel as much and will actually save money. besides - i can take two courses next semester and still get my full 4-courses-a-semester worth. decisions, decisions....

one of my roommates, nora, has been hiding her boyfriend in her room for a week. officially, people are supposed to sign in and pay to stay here as guests, but they're just not bothering with that. if they're sharing a bed, what's the problem, right? nora's from seattle, but she was travelling around europe for awhile before coming here, and along the way she met blair, her aussie boy. he was supposed to be finding a job in london, but instead moved down here. partially to be with nora, partially because living here's so cheap that he won't have to work while he's here. at any rate. with him being aussie and me being canadian (ooh! commonwealth!), the two of us kept bonding over silly things last night while the bunch of us were hanging out. like the fact that we say "grade 2" instead of "second grade". and the fact that americans stereotype us as living in igloos and them as being bushmen.

so basically, we bonded in our not being american.

it'll be a shame when he finds his own place. particularly if he takes nora with him - she's an excellent cook.

blair's being there does make me miss brent, though. damn.

Thursday, September 12, 2002

i hear tell that he-man is being remade. is this true? will orco's music still be the same? will he-man dress so skimpily? will the whole kingdom still be as naive as they used to be, as wimpy old prince adam does nothing more than reveal his furry underwear and develop an instant tan to become the amazing he-man? will they finally reveal his secret crush on man-at-arms? (with outfits like prince adam's, you knew that he was gay...) will she-ra infiltrate the show and become the real hero? and, like rebecca mentioned, will the show still end with a cheesy moral every time?

though if orco's music is lost, that will really be the biggest tragedy of them all. well, that and having he-man remind you to eat your vegetables.

do cartoons still try to teach you things like that anymore? were they ever any good at it? did kids ever really believe that he-man and archie and fat albert were real? enough that they'd take them seriously?

What's Your Movie Dream Car?
by Auto Glass America

bet you thought you wouldn't have to see those on this page for awhile. but it's ferris beuller. how can it not be posted?

an aside: those people who haven't seen Ferris Beuller's Day Off almost frighten me. of course, some have the excuse of not being the right age to see it. but surely you've had time to make up for that. you're truly missing out.

new in prague: nothing.

except for this fancy thai place we went to for lunch. there's another program here, Lexia, four americans, but they're mostly from bellingham. we're already planning to get together once we all get back home, do the Sea to Sky or something. it's nice having a few more people to know exactly where you're talking about, though. at any rate. lunch.

it was really fancy decorations, these metal branch-like thing attached to the walls to hang the glasses on upside-down, incredible cutlery, beautiful tapestries all over. but the best thing about the place was the bathroom. first off there were really neat images that were vaguely feminine and masculine, really only distinguishable by the genetalia. right there on the bathroom doors in a fancy family restaurant. i love it. inside, the walls were these beautifully vivid colours. the girl's was a reddish mauve, the guy's was a deep purple. the sink was this ornate piece of artwork, a deep glass bowl with a stylised faucet twisting over it. instead of usual liquid soap there was a fancy-looking soap ball that looked more like something from the woods of a fairytale, looking completely organic and, well, real. instead of instead of paper towels they had rolled up fabric cloths. instead of the usual brown semi-soft toilet paper they had three soft rolls, one blue one orange and one pink. instead of a toilet paper dispenser, the three rolls were hung off of another one of the metal branch creations that had been mounted on the wall. it was gorgeous.

each of us girls took turns to check it out after dana came back exclaiming over it. after we'd all gone we sent steve to check out the guy's properly. he came back looking astounded. instead of a urinal there's a granite rock with grooves chiselled out of it so that when you pee it turns into this lovely waterfall. he says that they're remodelling at home right now, and he's definately sending back a request for a new urinal in the house.

and after all that, lunch was still cheap.

i love prague.
(i'm doing this for future use. i'm not trying to be annoying and starved for attention. really. just ignore it. or don't, and message me. whichever you prefer.)

+420 721 866 849

you should message me. it would make your day. and mine.

stupid jokes, bits of news, mind-boggling predictions, riddles, tongue twisters, sentiments of love, the whole kit and caboodle.

+420 721 866 849.

come on. it's free. i'll be your captive audience for the time it takes to read your handiwork. and isn't that reason enough to it right there?

do it. make a poor girl in prague a little happier with such little effort. it's not like you've got anything better to do if you're already reading this now, is it. {g}

Tuesday, September 10, 2002

today i bonded with my czech teacher. we were going to go on a walking tour of prague, just so that we wouldn't be stuck in class, and she was going to show us things in czech. it was actually a lot of fun. but before we left, i pulled out my knee brace, because what with all the walking i've been doing, my knee's really starting to complain. darina saw it on the table, exclaimed, and pulled up her pant-leg to show off her brace. she's got to wear it because she hurt her knee skiing as well. we're both so cool.

or klutzy. one of the two.

i like this getting-messages thing. i've heard about showers that have decided to become sexy, sultry, popular nightclubs making executive decisions to change their lighting to strobe lighting. i've had hellos from around north america. i've heard tales of possible VPD-shirt replacements (!!!). feel free to keep it up. really, it makes my day. {g}

(yes, i'm begging for attention, so what? it's like email roulette in a way - surprise messages from people at any time. bad jokes, random musings, if i don't have much internet access these days to actually keep up on everyone else's lives, i have to get my perks somehow.)

czech people don't seem to believe in hardhats in construction sites. nor do they believe in cinnamon gum. this in itself is a tragedy. what does amuse me is the music of choice in construction sites - something akin to Z95.3 in vancouver, the pop music station that's about as teen-y and crappy as you can get much of the time. all these grown men doing construction, hearing shakira and kylie minogue all day long. although they also played moist, which, while i'm not really a fan of theirs at all, it was still fun to hear a vancouver band being played amidst the rest of the crap.

today i walked over charles bridge for the first time. very touristy. but still interesting. there's an outline of a body painted down by the water on one side. darina couldn't say why it was there, just that it was a joke. czech's are a morbid group though. when i saw Dancer in the Dark on sunday, rather than previews they showed a czech short film. it was done with puppets in stop-motion animation, with a soundtrack made up of czech folksy-sounding music. really nice, actually. but the story was about this girl trying to find her love during a war. she picked through bones hoping to recognise one of them. czech people in the audience laughed. she showed his pictures to skeletons in hopes that one of them was him, but none were. finally she found him in a hospital, but alas, he lay there with nothing below the knees. you could see the outline of his legs under the blanket, but the girl pulled it off to show the camera the bloody stumps. the czech people in the audience got a real kick out of it. a general was busy giving out medals, and as he awarded each one to the sick men, death was standing by to swing his scythe over them. the girl borrowed the scythe from death for a moment, turned around, and cut the general off at the knees. the czech people were laughing outright. she took his feet and sewed them back onto her lover's legs, and the two of the got up and danced. meanwhile death took away the general's soul.

it wasn't a gory film. in fact, i really liked it. it was nicely done. but if it were shown in vancouver, people wouldn't have been laughing out loud, and especially not in those parts. czech people have black senses of humour. and i love it.

wendy, the other canadian, and i got stipends today. neither of us knew about it, but apparently we're getting allowances of roughly $300cdn a month while we're out here. which is a total bonus. to celebrate we're going out for a proper meal. i don't have to be so cheap anymore! i can actually eat!

speaking of which, i'm hungry. so i bid you adieu.

Sunday, September 08, 2002

saw prokofiev's Romeo & Juliet last night. i love that music. saw it in the national theatre (narodni divadlo) which is nice and ornate. we were in the gallery, so roughly 6 floors up, but they go straight up. we had terrific seats - could see the dancers' facial expressions and all. all for a measly $7 canadian! yes, it's nice to feel rich.

anyways. mercutio was quite gay. seriously. i was wondering if it the was influence of budra making me notice it, but wendy mentioned something to me after awhile. right before the scene where he dies, he had a nice happy dance surrounded by townsfolk who were mostly female. i think it was the dance that was supposed to prove that he wasn't gay.

it really didn't work well. at all.

which made it all the better, really.

romeo and juliet is still one of the stupidest story lines of all time, though. but prokofiev's music is wonderful, so that makes up for it.
daniel may be god but apparently he can't check things to make sure silly page breaks are messing up links. what a foo.
dammit. lost another long post and daniel is god.

i have a cell phone now. people should send me text msgs because it's free for me to receive them. it's free to receive calls, for that matter, but i'll be surprised to get phone calls while i'm here from anyone other than parents. but if you want to, go for it. at any rate. the number's +420 721 866 849. msg me from boring classes. when you start getting those Really Deep Thoughts. like what dreams you had the night before. or what you want to eat right now. or how much you'd like to be in bed....

or maybe you shouldn't msg me during class. but it'll make me laugh, so go for it. or be cheap (like me!) and do it online here. because i'm all about cheap goodies.

may see prokofiev's romeo and juliet tonight. may see dancer in the dark tomorrow. may go to a fundraising show next week at the roxy, which is a very cool cafe and club (which also has free 'net!). very kitschy decorations throughout. it's not a club right now, as they're one of the places that was inundated with water a few weeks back, and it smells rather musty, but i'd imagine that nights there would be pretty nifty once they open up as a club once again. descriptions mention techno, but also experimental, A/V, underground, all that good stuff. i'll let you know if it's any good. because i know you care.

found out today that one of my roommate's a huge cowboy bebop fan. yesterday we gushed over dali for awhile together. the day before she exclaimed over my gorey calendar. in some ways we're pretty dissimilar, but in other ways we're so alike it's almost frightening. or rather, we're both just cool. it's just rather amazing that we ended up together in the same dorm room by luck, considering our tastes. (it's also nice because i have my coolness proven through our conversations, rather than having to go out with them, which sadly i haven't done much of, due to being exhausted after walking everywhere dealing with passports and visas and banks and all. it'll be nice to have energy soon. but then i'm also just all for being lazy and cool as well. {g})

speaking of visas. do i get the proper long-term visa, which i don't even know if i can do considering that i don't have a lot of the necessities and i don't even know if i can get them if i can't go to any of the buildings in canada in person anymore. or do i just get a tourist visa and renew it a couple more times and study here illegally? the school said that they don't care, they said that there's not really any way people would know, and i know a couple of students here on study visas, so i'm tempted to do that. it
would be easier. but then again the fact that i'd have to apply for a longterm visa from outside the country, forcing me to explore dresden, vienna, or the slovak republic, makes it somewhat tempting to go through all the bother.

course, then i remember what my last week here has been like and the last month at home as well, and i'm not so keen about the idea.

at any rate. off to find ballet tickets.

Friday, September 06, 2002

last night the prague orchestra performed its first show of the season outdoors in the old town square. a lot of people paid a lot of money to sit and enjoy it. a bunch of us from the dorm went down and just sat on the curb to listen instead. when it got boring watching the conductor, i just turned the other way and watched the lightening storm that was rolling in. afterwards we just sat around on the curb awhile, getting a thrill out of the fact that everyone else there was a tourist and we weren't.

seeing concerts ghetto-style is always the best way.

Thursday, September 05, 2002

LIBRA: The promise-breakers and love-fakers and delusion-makers are no fun, but ultimately you'll thank them for helping to clarify your goals. The idea-stealers and reverse healers and greedy feelers are hazardous to your happiness in the short run, but eventually they'll strip away your dangerous naiveté and inspire you to devise smarter protections for your heart, health, and wealth. In conclusion, Libra, it's one of those weird times when mediocre, apathetic, unconscientious people will be your greatest teachers.

i don't think i'm much of a fan of my horoscope this week.

Wednesday, September 04, 2002

1. really not a fan of the fizzy water. it's damn hard to find bottled water that isn't bubbly. and worst of all, if you leave it open for awhile for the bubbles to dissipate, the water still tastes bitter and gross. crazy europeans.
2. government agencies still suck. i almost wish i was an american at this point. us canadians are supposed to register with the prague police department. we spent over 3 hours today trying to find the right place, to arrive there at 3:45. the place closed at 3. so we have to do it all over again tomorrow. course, we did have the honour of watching a criminal or two be brought into the jail while we waited for someone who spoke english to come talk to us.
3. bought a mug today. the only big one i could find. fortunately it's pretty.
4. still no cell phone. can't decide if it's worth buying mostly to text-msg with people back home, because i can't think of many reasons to have a phone alone in prague. though phone calls might be cheaper. and i don't pay if people call me. so maybe it'd be good for the parental contact alone. still. is it worth it to pay ~$100 for a (used)phone (the same model i have at home) and then pay for the monthly plans, even if they are incredibly cheap?
4. now planning on going home and collapsing after walking around for another 6 hours straight. i am starting to get used to the idea of living here for awhile, though. it's starting to feel like home. i just need to learn a street name or two and then i'll be fine. and i bet you can't pronounce Ètyøi properly now, can you.

Tuesday, September 03, 2002

dammit. i just had a HUGE entry to post, and it disappeared. and i don't have the time to rewrite it right now.

in short. in prague. lovely. flood evidence is surprisingly minimal. saw the northern lights on the flight from calgary to frankfurt. the 5 hour stopover in calgary was hell on earth for any number of reasons. but the fact that it was calgary certainly didn't help. czech people are nice. haven't been mugged. haven't even felt threatened of being mugged. wavering from amazed that this is my home for the next while and feeling as though it's still vancouver (strange, but it's true). german children are funny. mineral water is still disgusting. czech's not so difficult at first glance. americans who live up to the stereotypical frat boy gun-toting image frighten me, and sadly, there's a number of them in my program. but they're friendly and easy to mock subtly. regular 'net access will come soon, but not quite yet. 'til then, stuck with 'net cafes. which means i'm paying mucho minutes. must go.

but feel free to cover my wall with postcards or whathaveyou:
sarah c__________*, #312a
Kolej Komenskeho
Parlerova Str 6
16000 Praha 6
Czech Republic

off to eat. ciao.

* last name's the same as holden's without the l, if you didn't already know it