Being an author is like being in charge of your own personal insane asylum.

- Graycie Harmon

Monday, March 1, 2010

A Golden Weekend!

I apologise in advance, this post is likely to be quite long.

Well, the 2010 Winter Olympics have closed. I have to say, I am really impressed with all the athletes who competed. You were all magnificent!

I am thrilled that the Canadian women and the Canadian men's hockey teams both came home with gold, and the men's game was a nail-biter! I want to congratulate team U.S.A. for making it a fight every step of the way. You guys played brilliantly, and I know a loss is hard to take, but you ought to be very, very proud of yourselves (the long faces of the men's team as they were accepting their silver medals was heartbreaking)!

One of my favourite athletes of the games has to be Patrick Chan. A figure skater of only 19 years, the young man had the single best attitude of any athlete I've ever seen. He finished 6th place (or was it 5th, I can't remember now), but he still was smiling, and he talked, not about his loss and disappointment, but about the wonderful experience he had, and the support of the fans, and he kept thanking everyone for all the help he's received. He was so grateful just to be able to compete in the Olympics, that winning didn't seem to matter to him. In one, short, post-performance interview, Patrick Chan exemplified what it meant to be an Olympic athlete and captured my heart. What a champion!

Talking about the Olympic spirit, I'd like to take the time to blast the hell out of MacLaren's. MacLaren's is a pub/sports bar on Elgin Street here in Ottawa. MacLaren's was the place friends and I decided to gather to watch the semi-final men's hockey - team Canada vs. team Slovakia. The game stared at 9:30ish, and my flatmate and I got there at roughly 9:30ish. Our friends were already inside. There was a small line up out side the door, so Jazz and I were expecting that the bar must be near capacity.

Yeah... no, it wasn't. It wasn't even close to capacity. Our friends had a huge table to themselves, and only filled it half way. There were empty chairs and tables all over the place. The bouncer was just being a douche (sorry, but he was) and decided to have everyone in the line up stand outside the bar for the entire first period. What the....?!?!

Look, I know that sometimes management may insist upon this in order to make the bar look fashionable to passers by. To me, however, it makes absolutely no sense. Particularly on a freaking game night! There was lots of space. There were people outside who, for the entire first period of the game, were not inside buying beer/other overpriced drinks. There were many people outside who left the line because they were so fed up with the waiting, and the bouncer's atrocious attitude (there were people inside who tried to tell the bouncer that they had friends waiting in the line, and there was tonnes of space at their tables (thanks K.C. for trying, by the way), and got only attitude). It's not like MacLaren's is a great bar either. It's just your run-of-the-mill sports bar.

MacLaren's, not only did your idiotic, rude and belligerent bouncer do nothing to endear patrons to your establishment, but you lost a considerable amount of business from people leaving, and from a large number of people not buying drinks or food the entire first period, despite the amount of space you had available. Management at MacLaren's you are all idiots. I will never be visiting your ridiculous establishment again.

Other than that, it was a wonderful weekend for Canada, and I spent the majority of it with my Dad, thus I had a great weekend also.

In something not Olympics related, I had decided at the beginning of February that I would begin running in the mornings and walking to work March first. It just so happened that March first was on a Monday, somehow making the resolution easier to achieve. Why is that? Hmmm....

There were several reasons for the running. The first, most compelling reason was to work on my cardio because I have noticed during martial arts training that it isn't what it needs to be. Also, there seems to be some history of heart problems in my family, and I'd like to prevent that happening to me.

The second reason was the whole silly feminine "I'm too chubby" issue. I'm a good weight, but I am a little chubby, so I'm trying to work on that. You are welcome to groan here if you want. I do when I think about it... I mean, am I really that concerned about how I look? Am I really that shallow? It seems the answer is yes.

As to the walking, the single reason I have decided to walk to work starting March first is purely because OCTranspo (public transit here in Ottawa) has decided to up their monthly bus pass to a whopping $91.75! That is quite the jump, seeing as how I paid $84.00ish for February.

Now, don't get me wrong, if OCTranspo's bus service was exceptional, I'd have no problems paying almost $100.00 a month to take the bus. If the buses were clean, if the bus drivers remembered that they were in the service industry, if the buses ran on time, if there was a freaking subway system, I would happily pay almost $100.00 a month to use public transit.

As it is, the buses are always filthy, bus drivers rarely even polite, let alone friendly, there is insufficient room on the buses for the amount of transit users there are, they never run on time and the service to areas outside of the main transit way are absolutely shocking.

On principle, I refuse to pay that amount of money for a service I barely even get. Go jump OCTranspo. You want to know why ridership is dropping? See all of the above paragraph, and then slap a $100.00 ticket for the privilege of enduring the disaster that is your "service." UGH!

So, having made these resolutions, this was the plan: up at 6am. Run at 6:30am. Arrive home and shower at 7:00am. Breakfast at 7:30ish am, leave for work 8:00am.

Right, I did, in fact, start running this morning. I ran for almost a full half hour (26.26) and discovered a lovely little bicycle path quite near my flat I can run along. I was very proud of myself as I turned on the shower and scrubbed down. Then it struck me.

My clock is an hour fast. Why? Well, because I couldn't be bothered to turn it back that hour when the "fall back" part of daylight savings came. I figured I'd just mentally add the hour in my head. So, when the clock said 6am, I'd know it was actually 5am. Well, let me tell you at a quarter to five in the morning, you don't know anything!

The clock said 5:45am when I first woke up, so I decided to give myself a little sleep in and not get up until 6:15am. Well, of course, 6:15am on my clock is actually 5:15am on everyone else's. My 6:30 run actually happened at 5:30. My 7:00 shower was actually 6:00. Sorry Jazz, if it woke you, by the way!

Laughing at myself, I crawled back into bed after my shower and snoozed until my clock said 8:44am. I swore, rolled out of bed, dressed hurriedly for work and walked in. The walk was about an hour. At least I didn't do that an hour earlier than I had to!

That was my ridiculously long post for a Monday. I'm now an hour and a half behind in my writing (damn it!) and need to get cracking. Have a great Monday everyone!

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