Monday, 31 October 2011

Never Eating There Again

I don't consider myself a picky eater. Unless it's something I'm allergic to or it's Chinese food I'll probably happily eat it with no problems.

I am so sick of eating rice nearly every day.

I love what my parents would call "white" food and I love eating out at "white" restaurants. The idea of a cream based soup is completely foreign to Asian restaurants much to my dismay and I'm too lazy to eat around bone or pick away fat and skin. So when even I refuse to eat at a "white" restaurant anymore, you know there are some serious issues with the establishment.

Such an example would be the restaurant some friends and I went to for lunch over the weekend. It's a fairly well known diner and supposedly one of the best nearby campus. I ate there once and wasn't impressed but I was willing to give it a second chance. Maybe they had an off day or something.

Still the least impressive club sandwich I've ever had though.

It being cold and windy I felt like a bowl of soup. They had two specials that day. Some boring chicken, lentil and bacon soup AND (I kid you not), a pumpkin pie soup with whipped cream.

Pumpkin pie soup with whipped cream.

Are you kidding me.

What maniac would make this soup? What kind of an idiot would order this?

Obviously, I did. Why? Because why not, that's why.

Yes Damian, yes you are.

Anyways, eventually my soup and salad arrive and I have to say that I'm still apprehensive. The whipped cream was nice, I mean how can you screw up whipped cream?

And then I get to the soup.

Have you ever had a pumpkin spice latte from Starbucks? Well, imagine it to be thicker, with inconsistent salty and/or very cinnamon heavy sections and that was pretty much what my soup tasted like. I don't think I've ever had a soup that unappetizing.

Oh, and my tabbouleh salad wasn't that great either, I just ate all the tomatoes and left the rest.

I felt like Byran for the rest of the day for some reason too.

I asked around and apparently the restaurant used to be really good but that was before the original owner sold the place. But that's not my problem, I'm avoiding the place from now on at all costs. Pumpkin pie soup... seriously...

Friday, 28 October 2011

Brb, TF2 Halloween Event Time.

Ok, I think it's pretty obvious to most of my gamer followers that I play a lot of Team Fortress 2. While everyone is scrambling to play Battlefield 3 or pre-ordering Call of Duty 3 I'm sitting back with a game that came out 4 years ago and is still going strong.

I'm also a hat addict. Stop judging me.

In all seriousness I still love this game. The gamemodes and maps are still fun, the addition of the new items allow for more varied gameplay and styles, the characters have unique voices and personalities. Valve (the developer, nothing to do with plumbing) also supports the community and individual modders. Paying commissions to people who either design maps that become popular, or modders who create hats and weapons that catch their attention. I like developers who give back to the community.

And it's not a measly amount either. Valve gives away 25% of the money made from these community contributions which last year was over 2 million dollars. Seriously, there was a guy who made a hat and it was so popular in a 2 weeks he had made 40 grand just like that. Just for making a virtual hat for people to wear in game.

Pretty self-explanatory.

The game is currently Free-to-Play meaning it doesn't cost anything. You start with a basic account and the only requirement to upgrade to a "premium" account is to buy something from the store. There's no pressure to, you can play just as fine with the basic account and the only ways you are disadvantaged from a premium account is superficial.

If you have some FPS experience you can charge right in and start kicking butt. If you feel uncomfortable playing in a server right away you could always play through the handy tutorial as well. The reason why I'm kind of promoting the game right now is because the much anticipated Halloween Event just came out and I'm kind of giddy with excitement.

Last year we got to fight this pumpkin guy. This year we get a flying eye.

As usual, Valve has released a silly comic on their blog and it's the kind of stuff expected from the TF2 universe. I think it's a breath of fresh air, the cartoony look that doesn't take itself seriously compared to all the gritty, dark "realistic" games that dominate the market today.

I'd give you guys my Steam ID so you could add me to your friend's lists but mine is full at the moment. :( If you have time, I seriously suggest you try TF2 out. There's no risk at all, the game is being patched and updated on average every 2 weeks. The community is USUALLY very nice and friendly despite what I said about Russian kids a few posts back.

And now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to spend some time with my girlfriend playing our favorite shooter. If you have any questions about TF2 I'd be more than happy to answer them.

This is her favorite hat in the game, I don't know what to say to her some days.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Me Not Healthy: Always Tired (Part 2)

My apologies for the rather abrupt, sudden and uh, "enthusiastic" previous post. It's just that a story that I'm rather engaged has been on hiatus for several months now and the end of a chapter was posted like night. However, due to the "enthusiasm" of several hundred thousand people eager to see the end (and crashing many things on the way rendering it unviewable) there was a lot of tension, anxiety and we fed off each other.

It was still awesome though. Fang and Sophia don't think I'm crazy.

And now for a legitimate post.

The unique thing about this particular arc that I'm sharing with you unlike the lung cysts or my previous relationships is that I'm currently experiencing this one. The prior events are drawn from memory but this story I'm telling you as it unfold. So yeah, let's see where this takes us?

So, as I recall from part 1, I had been given a CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) to try and use. Basically this thing is constantly pumping air via a mask into either my nose, mouth or both to reduce the incidents of waking up in the middle of the night. During the sleep I would wake 10-15 times for less than a second (meaning I'm not consciously aware of it) in 5 hours of sleeping. 6 hours of sleep was equivalent to maybe 3 hours because of how little REM sleep I got.

And then I look like this for the rest of the day.

The good news is, the based on the data gathered from the CPAP, the number of apneas (waking ups) went down significantly. The bad news? I didn't feel a difference. At All.

The first mask I used was a nasal only. Breathing through my mouth would result in a sensation not unlike choking due to the pressure caused by the CPAP. Not a problem, I'm not a mouth breather unless my sinuses are clogged.

Which is exactly what the stupid nasal mask did to me. It first took an hour to fall asleep because it's weird sleeping with something strapped to your face. And then when I finally fell asleep, 1 hour later I'd wake up choking, nose all clogged and I'd rip the mask from my face, turn over and fall asleep.

So then we did the next logical step:

Next I went with the full face one, mouth and nose were covered and I could breathe through either one. It was a lot better but I was still unable to sleep for more than 5 hours at a time with the machine. The neat thing about the CPAP was it recorded data so after a month I sent some things to my doctor. He wants to discuss a few things with me now.

And I'll let you know what those things are when I find out.

Link to Part 3.







(I'll have a legitimate post later today, let me release all this tension right now...)

 Now if you'll excuse me, I need to use the bathroom.

Saturday, 22 October 2011

Trolling for a good cause.

There is plenty of scum on the internet. I'm certain we've experienced trolls, scammers, 12 year old children who shouldn't talk online until they've hit puberty.

If I hear one more Russian kid...

However, what happens what you start combining the groups together? You start getting some rather interesting combinations and my most favorite one is, a site dedicated to wasting the time of scammers in the most hilarious ways possible.

Unfortunately there are still plenty of people who still fall victim to the "Nigerian Prince who needs to transfer millions into a foreign bank account" or "The terminal cancer patient who wants to donate his fortune and is willing to compensate you for your help" stories. If I'm correct a lot of elderly are tricked and their life savings disappear just like that.

419eater operates on the hope that by pretending to be victims the scammers will have less time for legitimate victims (as they're lead on a wild goose chase), become discouraged from performing future scammings or even ruining the scammer's lives.

Go internet superheroes!

If you have time, go take a look through the Wall of Shame and/or some of the success stories. One example was digging chest high holes while wearing togas followed by having milk poured on their head whole holding bread and fish and sending the resulting pictures.

Another good one was where a scammer carved an entire wooden bust of the anti-scammer's head. Or if you're really crafty, getting a scammer to fly overseas to dig up "buried money". However, they are told to dress up in costumes before reaching the dig site and not told that several other scammers will be also arrive in costume to try and dig up the non-existent money.

I know some of you will find this cruel and unusual or even inhumane. However these are not poor individuals attempting to make a meager living. These scammers are well off people who have likely scammed significant amounts of money from numerous people without a second thought. They use deceit, exploit vulnerable populations and are motivated by greed.

Plus I find it hard to have pity for people who pose like this.

I'm actually tempted to see if I can mess around with said scammers when I get some spare time. Would make for an interesting blogging arc I think. But school is starting to get busy again so we'll have to see.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011


For whatever reason more people have been reading my blog allowing me to recently reach the 250 follower milestone.

 This is like an achievement.

So thank you all for staying with me up to this point. It's much appreciated and it's nice to know that people are with me through whatever problems I encounter. Whether it's my joblessness, the health issues, or being an all around derp.

But do leave a comment on improvements that I could make. What do you want to hear more about? What interests you in this blog and what can I do to keep you interested? Also, I really should make some aesthetic improvements. This is much too drab and simplistic if I'm going to keep blogging seriously.

As with all posts of this nature I'm keeping this short but attaching a Youtube video. This one is 10 minutes long so be warned but it also one of the best things I've seen in a long time. I highly recommend you watch it.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Me Not Healthy: Always Tired (Part 1)

What you thought the allergies and the lung cysts were the only health issues I had? No, unfortunately not. At this rate I'm going to die pretty soon so enjoy me while you still can.

I wish.

For the last few years, I have always been tired. I fall asleep on car rides, in class, while eating... Actually now that I think about it place me in a sitting position and you risk having me passed out and drooling all over myself. Part of it is my fault. I mean, I probably should go sleep earlier but classes and exams sometimes don't allow for that. And when I don't have work, well, the internet is there to keep me company.

Who needs rest? I have my computer!

But this problem continued even when I get more than 8 hours of sleep. On the few days that I do end up sleeping earlier I still wake up tired. My favorite thing to see in the morning is that it's still dark outside so I can go back to sleep. I began to suspect it could be a medical problem. No amount of sleep was enough for me, I often woke up with headaches, and I snored really loudly. My siblings complain about it on vacation whenever we share a room. These symptoms fit that of someone with sleep apnea.

Basically, sleep apnea is when you wake up numerous times while sleeping, disrupting your sleep cycle. A lot of it has to do with your windpipe being closed due to being too fat or odd sleeping positions. You may not even be aware of it happening because it can last for seconds before you fall back asleep. If it happens enough it can cause 6 hours of sleep to feel more like 3.

Unfortunately I don't share the other symptoms which include smoking, being overweight, and being middle-aged. Regardless, I decided to get a level 3 sleep study done which means I'd bring a device home, it would record things and then I'd bring it back for analysis.

You get the idea.

The results... were inconclusive. Yes they confirmed that I was waking up several times a night and I snored really loudly for large portions of time but I didn't use the device long enough for any conclusive results.

The only thing left for me to do would be to either take a level 1 sleep study (go to a hospital and get even more things stuck to my face) or I could try using a CPAP, a device meant to aid in breathing to help me get a better night's sleep.

I opted for the CPAP and I'll share my experiences and results in a future blog post.

Link to Part 2.

Thursday, 13 October 2011

I suck at Scheduling

Due to my inability to find a job I figured I might as well enter a fourth year of University and graduate with a degree. I think I know what I'm doing, I mean I've signed up for classes for 3 years already, how hard can a 4th be? But just to be safe, I go to talk to a co-coordinator.

She takes one look at my Fall term, and her eyes just widen.

"Uh Damian, we got a problem here".


Turns out I've already hit my cap for the number of Junior/100 level courses I can take. In other words, the course in Java and Economics that I was taking wasn't doing anything towards my degree. I was paying for deadweight courses.

Luckily, I managed to work some things out and I've dropped both courses. I'm hoping that I have enough credits for graduation and if not, the Winter term will fix that. This leaves me with a ton of psychology courses. Research psychology is research, there's not much to say about it. I enjoy it.

The other courses, I am having issues with.

For starters, my Abnormal psychology class while interesting has a DVD lecture available for purchase. The prof strongly suggested that we buy and use it. A quick listen reveals that it's basically 4 DVDs that cost $100 for the exact same lectures we hear in class.

I'm serious, the things are word for word, I'm guessing he hasn't changed his lectures in a while because I hear that this guy has been doing this for a number of years. We also think he has several DVDs that he rotates through because the DVDs from just last year are somehow obsolete.

As if I wasn't poor enough already.

And then Developmental Psych is uh... different. Lectures consist of her standing in from of a classroom asking the class for their opinions of various concepts or groups of people gathered together to "discuss" a random concept. Half the class doesn't show up anymore and I sit around, vaguely paying attention.

Or catch up on some much needed rest.

Round #2 of midterms are soon so hopefully I do well on those. Maybe I should start studying now...

Monday, 10 October 2011

Happy Turkey Day!

As most of you probably know today was Thanksgiving for those of us up north in Canada. So I got an extra long weekend to spend with family and eating food.

I didn't have any pumpkin pie though, maybe I'll buy one just for myself.

So I'm going to keep this post short because I feel lazy. Quick update regarding various things. Unfortunately I was unable to find anything on my date with Theresa so I'm thinking of just getting her a game via Steam. BUT, she's busy this entire week and next week so I could play the "I had your gift but you were to busy so I saved it for later" card and just have more time to get a gift. If that made sense.

This would also buy me more time to find a recipe for something to cook/bake for her. If I can't find one in time I think I'll just cook her lunch on campus using one of the few recipes I'm actually good at. It's angel hair pasta in a tomato broth and she loves it BUT I've cooked it for her a few times and I don't want to look like a one-trick pony.

This bird could probably cook better than me.

And to end, here's this cat video that I find hilarious but Theresa finds really annoying.

I feel bad for laughing but that doesn't stop me.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Presents for Theresa

Hey my midterms are done (at least, round 1 of them are) so I'm kind of free now! Well, not really.

I wish.

Regulars of my blog will remember my panic of buying my Mother's birthday present. And at the end I mentioned that I had to start hunting for a present for my girlfriend Theresa. Well her birthday is next week so let's see how well I'm doing.

Note before we start, I have a thing for the number 4, thus my goal is to always give my girlfriend 4 gifts. (Somehow Bersercules remembers my obsession with the number 4, I'm not sure why....)

Gift #1:

For those of you unaware of Squishables they make great gifts. Basically they're giant plush animals.

I think this is their second largest one.

Theresa already has both of the turtles offered but recently she really likes koalas. So the obvious thing to do was to buy her the koala Squishable as well. Gift #1, easy.

Gift #2:

This is also easy. On her birthday I'm taking her out to lunch at her favorite Italian restaurant. It's been a while since we've been there so I think she'll like that. I'm hoping I can get the waiter/waitress to give her a slice of cake with a candle in it or something. No singing though, Theresa embarrasses easily though and she'd kill me later.

Gift #3:

A lot of you suggested making things. Good idea, so I've been looking through Lizzy's blog to try and find something that I can bake without dying.


Ok, I'm not that bad but my baking isn't exactly my strongest suit. Things to note, Theresa doesn't like cupcakes or pastries that are too sweet.

Gift #4:

I'm actually uncertain for this last one. I have a date with her on Sunday so I'm thinking of buying her something then, you know, like an early birthday present. But Theresa is really, really, hard to buy for. As in, she'll see something she'll like, refuse to buy it because "it's a waste/no necessary/I don't need it/[insert stupid reason here]" AND refuse to let me buy it.

I'm still bitter about that dress she wouldn't let me buy her.

Worse comes to worse I'll gift her something from Steam. It's a cop-out gift but I'm kind of running out of options.

Plus, I need to start thinking about Christmas gifts too. Can't use up all my ideas yet.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Midterm Week Post

It's midterm week and by midterm week I mean all my midterms have been crammed into one week. Thus I haven't been getting around to as many blogs as I would have liked so I apologize for that. Don't worry, I'll still be posting every third day.

And with that, here's a short post with 4 short Youtube videos that I've personally enjoyed. I know you're all busy people so I try and keep them to a minute long. Now if you'll excuse me, Abnormal and Developmental Psychology aren't going to study themselves.

Wonder what else he can imitate



You're still watching? Fine, here's a video that's double the length of the others.
Wish my profs were like this...

And with that, I'll see you guys Friday.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

Me Not Healthy: The Lung Cysts (Part 3)

For those that are new to my blog, welcome! You're joining us at the end of a small story arc about my poor health and lungs. Click here for Part 1 and here for Part 2.

A quick recap from last time, I've been deemed healthy enough to be sent back to the comfort of my own home. They bandaged up the hole where the chest tube was and told me that the stitches in the other two incisions would eventually dissolve on their own. I only really remember two things from my at home recovery. 1. I slept a lot. 2. My hair starts to smell really bad even after just a week without a shower.

In the hospital I was pretty much just given a damp cloth to wipe myself down with. At home I was too busy sleeping, glad to no longer be interrupted by check-ups and x-rays. I couldn't shower at home just yet because I had to wait a few days to allow for the chest tube hole to partial heal up because I don't think I want excess water just sloshing around inside me. You have no idea how good it felt to get that first shower. You just feel refreshed, clean and rejuvenated.

That cat has no idea what it's missing out on.

A few more weeks pass and we go to see the doctor again. More x-rays are taken and I look and feel perfectly fine. They remind me again that there is a 95% chance that they got all the cysts. I should not have anymore problems.

And four days later I feel what I think is a cyst bursting.


And this hasn't been an isolated situation. Either they didn't get all the cysts, they're somehow coming back or I've gone crazy. Sometimes it's just a short period of difficulty breathing but recently pain has returned. Just last week I was walking up some stairs when suddenly I bent over in pain and stood there for a good minute. Oh, and did I mention that my right lung probably has cysts too? I've felt something wrong in it but a cat scan wasn't done on that side because it didn't happen as often as the left lung. And did I also mentioned the only way they can do anything is probably with more surgery?

So there's not much I can do other than hope the problem goes away on its own. I don't have time to go for another surgery even if it is free in Canada. It took me well over a month to recover so I think I'll just let it keep happening.

Insert obscure MSPA reference here.

On a side note, everytime it does happen I have a tendency to sleep in which pisses off my parents to no end. They think I'm being lazy and I'll let them keep thinking that. Better to have them think that than worrying about my stupid lungs again.

Speaking of sleep, that's another health problem I probably have. Maybe another day I'll discuss it.