Friday, 29 June 2012

Preperation for China

Less than a week remains until I head to China. It's a combination of dread and excitement for me. I'm excited because I love traveling and seeing new things. And so many things in China are so cheap, especially the food. I am stuffing my face there until I die.

Unless you know, the heat and humidity kill me first.

Yeah, not the greatest time to go, in the middle of summer but it's the only time we are able to go there. Also, I love my internet and China has terrible internet. I lost all job opportunities due to this vacation and I'll miss out on a roadtrip that my friends are going on as well. But what can you do?

Well, I'm getting ready for trip.

1. Internet Access

I'm addicted to my Internet. China, hates the internet. Surprise surprise. I'm certain most of you are aware of the Great Firewall which prevents people from accessing certain sites such as Facebook, Youtube and (sometimes) Gmail. There is a way around it however, by using a Virtual Private Network or VPN you'll be able to bypass the Firewall with no problem.

Unfortunately, I lack the technical abilities to set one up for myself so I'll probably just rent one for a month for $5 again. Not bad. Let's just hope my Macbook doesn't catch on fire...

Uh oh.

2. Money

Theresa completely failed to buy herself anything with the money I gave her when she went to China. If you want something done right, do it yourself.

But not just that, we're going to be going to Hong Kong, a Shanghai tour and then to Taiwan. 3 places, 3 different types of currency. I'm really hoping I've brought enough because I'd rather not try and exchange money in Asia. I've heard enough horror stories of people losing their credit cards and what not.

I am fond of the way the coins look though.

3. Locations

In China we'll be mostly on tours. We'll be running around on our own in both Taiwan (Taipei area) as well as Hong Kong. If anyone has any ideas of what are interesting things to see mentioned it in the comments below. I haven't found anything that really appeals to me yet.

4. Clothing

My worst enemy is heat. I burn extremely fast and it doesn't take long for me to get heat rashes. Seriously, I get rashes on my body from being too hot. This is complicated by my style of clothing which is long jeans, t-shirts + dress shirts.

I'm forced now to wear shorts in an attempt to stay cooler. There's a reason why I refuse to wear shorts unless completely necessary. I'm fairly certain I have chicken legs. It's a curse, being so thin. And my dress shirts usually do a good job at making me look like a normal weight.

So graceful.

So again, anyone with memorable locations in either Taipei or Hong Kong let me know. Preferably indoors or with air conditioning.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Self-Censorship (Part 2)

Part 1 is over there. It may make this post less confusing if you haven't read it yet.

Anyways, there is a reason why I gave the story of me backing up into someone's car. We can acknowledge that it's a bad situation but in the end, everything is good. No one is hurt, my parents aren't sticking my head on a pole, and my Dad even managed to repair the rear bumper to the point where it's barely noticeable.

And look how worried and stressed Theresa got. Imagine how she'd react to something really bad.

Which leads us to the story how I was accused of plagiarism. And why I waited so long to make a post about it.


This event took place back in April, slightly after all my papers were due. Anyone else remember what fun I had during that month? The sleepless nights, the constant work, the threat of final exams looming after the papers were handed in.

Anyways, one of those papers apparently resembled the paper of another student. We both helped each other a great deal because there was one section where I had great difficulty in, but she found easy and vice versa. We helped one another out, she finished before I did and so I helped out a bit more by editing her paper.

But our papers resembled each other too much. And thus our prof had an appointment with us to discuss this strange occurance. This happened in around mid-May.

And before I continue, I want to mention, no, I did not plagiarize.


Plagiarism is not to be taken lightly. Anything from getting zero on the assignment, to failing to course, to being suspending from the University or even being expelled from the University is possible. None of these options were acceptable to me because I was convinced I was innocent.

And I made sure to share these thoughts with my professor and I thought I did a fairly good job of it.

And then a few weeks later, I get an email from the Associate Dean. He wanted to have an appointment with me as well.

Guess I didn't do a good enough job convincing my Prof.

Finally, my appointment arrives, early June. I had made a mental checklist of everything I had said, and tried to make it more compelling. The Dean would get the final say in whether I was found guilty or not and I needed to prove my innocence.

However, during the meeting, it felt as if the Dean thought I was already guilty of plagiarism. You guys know what I'm talking about, that feeling you get when you're trying to argue with someone but you can tell that their mind is already set. The Dean also showed me a letter that my prof. had sent. Apparently she felt I deserved a zero on the essay.

Yeah, I guess I did a really crappy job of convincing her of my innocence. And the way things were looking, I failed to convince the Dean as well.

Pretty accurate as to how I felt.

As I left his office, I was told that I would be informed of his decision in another few weeks. And if I was found guilty, my last hope would be to file for an appeal. This was not looking good for me. And so I did the last thing I thought I could possibly do.

I wrote.

Well, more accurately, I typed up an email with all my old arguments, additional arguments, rebuttals to his arguments and sent it to him a few days after the appointment. We're talking over 700 words in less than an hour in one sitting. It's another one of the few talents that I possess, being able to write immense and articulate amounts in a short period of time.

Years of training (I thank my English and History teachers) have taught me how to write a lot with little time and prompt. To be honest, that's how most of blog posts get done. An idea pops into my head and boom, I have it all mentally written. All that needs to be done is to type it.

Within less than 24 hours, the dean replies to my email. I had been acquitted of all charges. This happened last week.


And now you can see why I didn't share this Theresa back in April or discuss it on my blog. 2 months of panicking and anxiety attacks. She would have been worrying during her exams, during her Pharmacy rotation, during her trip to China and everything in-between. I'm not saying I didn't worry but I hide my concerns well enough that no one caught on. Calm while under fire.

Some of you like Fang wondered why I'm sharing this now. It's simple, the issue was resolved, everything is good now, Theresa has no reason to panic and if she does, it's going to be greatly reduced.

And on that note, that means any major problem I encounter is not going to be shared until I've personally resolved it or it kills me. This can range medical to academic to personal problems. I simply can't afford to have Theresa going through any more anxiety attacks caused by me. I've caused enough over the time we've dated.

Oh and on that note, Darling, remember how you were concerned about me getting ticketed for parking in that spot? I did get a parking ticket, but I successfully talked my way out of it. Everything is good now. :)

(And yes this post is late. My internet died and I had to resort to stealing my neighbor's...)

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Self-Censorship (Part 1)

I talked about my recent writer's block a few posts ago. Not having the motivation to talk about anything. And while that was true there is another reason why I've been having some difficulty writing posts.

I've been censoring myself, limiting which parts of my life to say. Normally that's not an issue, I don't care about being judged by people, that's not the reason why I refrain from sharing certain details.

It's because Theresa reads my blog, and there are certain things I'd rather not have her know about.


No, I'm not having an affair or secretly a serial murderer. The kind of stories I've been holding back on are bad things that happen to me that will cause her to worry. See, Theresa and I are different in the ways we deal with problems.

When "things" hit the fan, Theresa starts to panic, becomes inconsolable, and if it's really bad, she starts crying. It doesn't matter if there's nothing she can do about it, or if everything is fixed and better, just thinking about that problem sends her into an anxiety attack. Even thinking about hypothetical problems can just as easily send her into one of these frenzies. And these worry sessions can go on for days.

And then you have me. Despite all my physical fragility, I am mentally very sound. Calm, collected and able to see clearly despite the world crumbling around me. It's one of the few talents I'm proud of. Some people might call me cold, I call it being efficient. No point worrying over something I have no control over. And in the rare situation where something does shake me up, I only need 24 hours at most to fully recover.

He who panics is dead.

An example of this is an event that happened the other day. We were going on a date and I went to her place to pick her up. Excited to finally be able to travel faster and further now that I could drive we went on our way.

And I backed into the car of her neighbor.

Not my finest moment.

Not as bad as this though.

Fortunately, no one was hurt, everyone was civil, and damages were mild. Within an hour I was over the incident and it was like it never happened. I felt fine to drive again, I realized it was a silly mistake and that accidents happen. Everything was ok now and my parents hadn't even banned me from driving.

Theresa on the other hand is still unable to get in a car with me 1 week later.

She has a mini-anxiety attack everytime I mention a car, and blames her "over-imaginative" thoughts.

So I've refrained from sharing stories that would cause her to worry about me. Because once she starts worrying, she can't and won't stop. As in, it will ruin everything for her because she feels terrible when she enters her state of worrying.

Stories like when I was almost found guilty of plagiarism on a paper 2 months ago. If I told Theresa this at the beginning, she would have worried non-stop until the issue was resolved.

But, I'll share that story on Tuesday.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Not Feeling too Well

Missed a post yesterday. Wasn't feeling all that great. Kind of just passed out and woke up with a groggy head.

Normal scheduled post will be on Saturday. See everyone then.

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Welcome Back Dear

After 4 long weeks of being stuck in some foreign country, Theresa is back. Safe and sound in Canada.

Where the food is less questionable (and in some cases, actually edible), the people are more tolerable, and if she gets sick or injured she doesn't have to bribe the doctors to insure that she's going not going to die.

I'm not kidding about the last part.

Oh China...

Anyways I'm looking forward to our dates before I head to China myself. My main objective is to buy her things. See, I gave her a decent amount of Yaun before she left. I told her to spend it on herself and buy something nice.

I specifically tell her NOT to buy me anything. I repeat, DO NOT BUY ME ANYTHING.

So, what does she do with the money? Well, she donates a good chunk of it to her tour bus driver who got into an accident that wasn't his fault. However, the tour company couldn't care less and were still going to charge him for repairs. Theresa decided to help him out with the costs, and that's fine with me.

Then she spends the rest of the money on a gift.

For me.

So, other than trying to get back at her for failing to follow instructions, I'm trying to make our dates cater to whatever problems she encountered while overseas. We tried to communicate as best we could via emails. And from those emails I've narrowed down the most common complaints she had while she was there was:

1. Why is this internet so terrible?
2. I miss Western food.
3. Am I going to die if I eat this? It tastes so good but it might kill me if I keep eating.
4. I really hate all this "fancy" Chinese food we're eating.

Yeah... I wouldn't eat that either...

So my other goal is to take her out to eat. Especially now that I'm more confident in my driving skills we can go to a greater number of restaurants and later in the day. In the past, a huge problem we had was being unable to go out for dinner due to the amount of time it took for Theresa to bus home.

Well, we could get dinner near her place. BUT most of the restaurants near her side of the city are terrible. We would know, we've been to a lot of them. But this isn't a problem now! Now we can go to restaurants on MY side of the city. And she can get a ride home.

Unless something like this happens.

In the meantime, I'm also trying to bake/cook something for her too. So hopefully I can get that done in time as well.

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Adventures in Driving

I don't like driving. I don't care for cars or racing games and I don't think I ever will. Which is odd because nearly every other male person I know starts drooling the instant some amazing, fancy, new and foreign car is brought into conversation. They're up to date on maintenance and performance boosters. And know how to fix their car if anything should ever happen to it.

For me, it's just a tool. If it gets me from point A to point B. I'm happy.

Google images claims this is a car.

And because I live in North America (specifically Canada) I pretty much need to drive to get to anywhere. Public transit is a joke with unreliable buses and trains. What would take me 10 minutes to drive to would take half an hour of busing.

And it's even worse in the winter. I'm fairly certain that most Canadians have experienced standing in a blizzard for at least an hour waiting for a bus to drive by.

And then said bus drives away without stopping.

Could be worse I guess.

So I've been making an effort to get as much practice driving as possible. Theresa has been bugging me a lot to start driving too. At least this way we can spend more time together and less time busing. It also allows us go to places where buses are less likely to pass. We can eat without worrying about when the next bus will arrive.

We can do things in said car.

Get your head out of the gutter. I meant we could take naps.

But the biggest problem I have is that I'm not exactly the greatest driver. And Theresa gets carsick easily. To give an example of how easily she gets motion sick, Minecraft is unplayable for her because of how the view bobs along (to mimic movement in real-life).

So that means I can't have a single sudden stop, swift turn or any other forms or terrible driving. I don't want to make my girlfriend carsick. I want her to feel comfortable with me being in the driver's seat.

Don't want this stereotype to be true with me.

But the only way to get better is practice. And looks like I need to keep practicing as much as I can. Theresa comes home on Sunday. And I want a date with her as soon as possible.

Monday, 11 June 2012

No Motivation for Anything

I've been noticing this a lot around the Blogosphere lately, lots of people just not having the energy or in the mood to blog or talk about anything. So I guess that makes me feel slightly better when I say that I've caught this bug as well.

Except it's not just with blogging, it's motivation to do anything.

I even sit like this too.

I'm not sure why this is the case. It's pretty easy to occupy my time and attention with things. And I normally love my computer and just goofing off on it. But lately, it just hasn't been enough. I usually love visiting blogs and reading about people.

I genuinely like hearing about how people's days have been and the interesting things they do. I guess that's a given considering that I'm a Psychologist.

But I've been neglecting my own blog, I haven't been doing my rounds. And I don't know why I don't have the motivation to do so.

Be entertaining again computer!

Also odd is that I'm just running out of things to blog about. I try and do interesting things so I have things to talk about but again, I've just been on my butt this entire time. I'm not sure whether to attribute that to a lack of a job or that Theresa is out of town.

It could also be that I'm not sleeping well. Though that's probably just due to me staying up and and then sleeping in really late.

But if I had a reason to wake up maybe I wouldn't stay in bed for so long.

I'm hoping things will improve once Theresa gets back home. Be able to get out of the basement, burn in the sun and what not. And in a few weeks I'll be going to China for a few weeks. So then I'll have plenty of stories to share.

About burning in the weather.

I relate to this so well...

In the meantime, anyone want to suggest things for me to do? I really feel like I should be spending my time more productively. I tried making a risotto for the first time in months the other day and it was kind of a mess. Not looking forward to curry.
So, feel free to suggest anything for me to do. I'm up for ideas.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Job Hunt Update

It's about time I gave some sort of update regarding my hunt for a second job. I made a huge fuss about it and I think it's time we talk about it.

I have good news.

And I have bad news.


First, I did manage to secure an over the phone interview with a company. The job wasn't anything fancy. Call center where I would do technical support sorts of things. The pay would be decent and there was even an option for commission if I was savvy enough with a customer.

Yeah, the hours would be kind of weird. Yes, the training would take about a month, but the point is. Second job, that's all that matters. I need the money. 1 part time job isn't enough to pay for anything.

And then they offered me an actual in-person interview.


And then they asked me the following question.

"Are you going on vacation anytime within the next 6 months".

And yes, in fact, I am. I leave at the beginning of July for 3 weeks to China.

And that pretty much destroyed any chances of getting this job. And probably any other one too.


So I'm guessing most other jobs are going to have similar policies. I'm also guessing that I shouldn't bother looking for any other jobs until I get back. Even then, classes will be starting in a month and I'm not sure if I could balance the workload that well.

In the meantime, back to as many hours as I can snag at the fast food job. It be nice if I could get more hours but my boss has enough staff working as it is.

Yay for cashier and stuff.

On the bright side, the call center did ask me to contact them again when I return from China so maybe there's some hope. We'll see how things work out.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Happy Birthday to me.

It's my birthday tomorrow and I turn 22. I'm not sure if there's an significant milestone that I reach upon turning this age. If you know of any, do tell me in the comments below.

But in the meantime, I guess we should be celebrating or something?

No really, I think as I grew older I began to shy away from birthdays and all the attention that comes from it. I refuse to tell people I know in real life the actual date, and for those who do know, I am completely useless in what I want for gifts. My default responses are "Nothing" or "Get something for Theresa".

I prefer to give gifts. Receiving just feels odd. Like it's some kind of weird obligation. And this year may be my best year of avoiding people yet.

See, another thing about me is that I'm extremely difficult to buy for, mostly because I'm so unhelpful. Unless you're talk to me on a near daily basis you're not going to know what to get me or where to get it. So that's why most people will head over and ask Theresa what to get me.

But Theresa is far away in China right now. With terrible internet I might add. Sometimes I go days without hearing from her so good luck to anyone else trying to communicate with her. Oh, and with Theresa in China she can't get me anything. Really no point seeing as I'll be going in a few weeks myself.

Hahaha! I'm so clever!

Well, happy birthday to me. I'm cutting this post short because of that. I'll see you guys on Friday.

Friday, 1 June 2012

Happy 4th Anniversary

I can't believe it's been 4 years already. Well, Monday marks the 4 year anniversary between Theresa and I. Yes I know, 4 years isn't that long compared to some of you who are already married but for someone who's about to turn 22, 4 years is a long time. That's almost 20% of my life being with someone.

And I couldn't imagine being with anyone else.

This is where you go "d'aww" or puke.

If you haven't read the story of how we hooked up, you can read about it here. I'd like to dedicate this post to her. And I know she is going to get embarrassed when she finally reads this. I highly doubt she's reading my blog while on her vacation to China because China has really terrible internet.

This is probably the mushiest post I've ever typed up so if you hate that kind of stuff, I'd advise you to stop right now and leave a comment about bacon or something. It's fine, I understand.

So where do I start about her?

Yes, where to being?

Theresa and I went to an academic high school. The so called "best" students from each Junior High were pulled and placed there. But despite being one of the best of the best in our graduating class she mostly kept to herself, never boasting her accomplishments and didn't draw attention. That was the kind of girl she was. Humble, demure, and reserved. She acted in every way a classy lady.

And then you had me, on the opposite spectrum.

I ranked somewhere in average rank in terms of grades and my personality was completely different. If my somewhat taller physique didn't make me more already noticeable, some off-hand comment or remark would do the job just as well. Most people either found me to be good company or absolutely irritating. I saw things in a different light and that was reflected in my mannerisms. I'd been called many things before, but "boyfriend material" was not usually one of them.

And so imagine the surprise of our classmates (and myself) when Theresa agreed to date me.

Probably something like this.

University life has not exactly been the easiest thing for me. And at any given time Theresa could have left me for a boyfriend with a brighter future. Someone drowning in scholarships, with a 4.0 GPA or stable career path.

But she didn't.

Despite any problems we may have had, regardless of my shortcomings and failures, and even against the wishes of her parents she continued to date and love me unconditionally. She isn't secretly crazy with bodies hidden in a basement, she doesn't have unpredictable mood swings, nor is she using me for her own personal or financial goals. The only thing she asks of me is my company which I am more than happy to give.

Pretty much my reaction whenever I see her online.

Seriously, what more could I ask for in a significant other? I'm actually having trouble typing this post up not because I'm running out of things to say, but because everytime I think of something to say I stop typing and end up lost in thought, just thinking about her. All while having this stupid grin on my face.

And then I snap out of it and I try to compose my thoughts in a coherent and elegant manner. You know, without sounding like some obsessed fanboy. I'm trying so hard to describe this wonderful person in my life and I really don't think I'm doing her justice.

So before I start rambling like an idiot, I'm just going to wrap up quickly here. Theresa has been an irreplaceable part of my life and means the world to me. I know I'd be a completely different person had she not said yes 4 years ago and for that, I am extremely grateful.

Thank you for 4 wonderful years Dear, I love you.