Thursday, December 30, 2010

Cancer's an Asshole

I don't usually cuss in my titles, but considering the subject matter, I believe that's excusable. About 6 months ago, the Rabbi at my synagogue told us about a girl who had leukemia. Her family was short on funds to treat her, and he asked the community to mobilize and help fund her treatment, a very last ditch attempt. At around the same time, similar sermons were being spoken, all asking people to donate a few dollars to help A. The next day, I gave a five, as did each my (11 year old) brother, and both of my parents. I guess other families were doing this as well, because they raised enough money. A travelled to Israel, the place where the experimental treatment was being conducted, and started on the tough treatments.

About 30 minutes ago, I was called to the computer, where my mom showed me an article. A died at around 5:30 am on December 29th, Israel time. I didn't know A personally, and I didn't even know her family, yet I was crying while I read that article. The chemotherapy killed her before the cancer did, she was actually in remission.

Were my $5, and everyone else's, a waste? I'm wrestling with that question right now.

I think that the overall objective is to kick cancer's ass. Did this help?

She's dead. Her family is probably shattered. Cancer just took another innocent life, no ass-kicking there. Our money didn't save her. She was one of the first people to try out this treatment, which worked well in almost every other patient who went through it. What does that mean in terms of the research for it carrying on? What if my money spelled ruin for something that was looking promising?

Then again, the researchers probably learned more about the cancer. What kicks its ass the most effectively, and avoids kicking the ass of the patient. And science is all about trial and error, so on the large scale of things, this could be a tragedy, but not too terrible in the long run.

I almost feel like I should have prayed for her more, like I should have done something. Sent her a get well soon card or something. But I guess it's not my fault.

Cancer is kind of like this huge bonding force. I've been affected so deeply by it that when I hear of someone else who was affected by it, I just want to give them a big hug. Not that it shouldn't get a good ass-kicking.

<3 Gabi

Socks today: Pink and white striped fuzzy socks. I can't decide if it's ironic or not that they are ones to fund breast cancer research...

Friday, December 24, 2010

So. Many. Books.

Well. Blogger doesn't love me, since that took ten minutes of opening and closing tabs to try to get this text box to load.
WARNING: This post is almost completely consisted of me talking about various books. I tried to not include any spoilers, or at least nothing of the plots that wouldn't be on the back of the book. 

Anyways, I have books! Over three years I amassed all of my Chapters/Indigo/Coles/World's Biggest Bookstore cards (large bookstores, all part of the same chain) and when I added them up it came to a grand total of a lot of books. I ordered them online, because books in Canada are way more expensive than in the US (even though our dollar is at par, which is stupid.) I get a good discount online, and I bought six books with some money to spare.

Book #1:
An Abundance of Katherines

I must admit that the cover of my copy isn't that awesome, because I cheaped out and bought the trade paperback for $3.99. My potential best friend that I've mentioned a couple of times before (Shall we call her PBF?) recommended this to me, and said that I'm the female counterpart of the main character, Colin. I don't know how happy I am about that because Colin is kind of annoying. I guess (I hope) she meant how I like math, or was just referring to the time that we graphed goodness (I told you that she's awesome).When I opened the book, I knew I'd like it, because it had footnotes. Books with footnotes are wonderful, like the Bartimaeus Trilogy. It was a pretty cool book. Colin tries to find a formula to predict relationships, and there is even an appendix explaining the math behind it. I laughed at the footnotes.

Book #2

The Princess Bride

Again, my cover isn't as awesome because I cheaped out and bought the trade paperback with the movie cover. I am OMRSUPEREXCITEDSQUEEEEYAY to read this book. I have watched the movie many, many, many times from when I was really little, because it is my dad's favourite, and also mine. I'm assuming that the book will be even better, because I still stand by the whole "the book is always better" thing. Unless the book is based on a movie or (shudder) a TV series. Those Glee novels make me cry a little bit inside. I'm also thinking about writing a Sparklife article comparing the book and the movie, but that all depends on how much effort I want to actually put into that.

Book #3

Eating Animals

I've been thinking about vegetarianism a lot lately, and this is a book about it by an author whose other stuff I like. I'm kind of afraid to open it, because I am so close to being pushed over the edge that I think if this book gave a nudge that I would do it. I mean, I already avoid mammals most of the time. My main concern about going vegetarian is that it is hard enough for me to get nutrients already, and I don't need to make that tougher. I'd still eat fish, though, because I have gone fishing and gutted a fish, and I know that I could handle killing one, while I could never, ever, kill a mammal directly, and probably not a bird either. I'd love to talk to someone who's a vegetarian by the way.

Book #4
A Dose of Awkward

This is the Left Handed Toons book, and I've been reading it bit by bit, instead of splurging on the comics all at once. *congratulates self on self-control* For those of you who don't know what Left Handed Toons are, I suggest that you go to  right now. That may be a threat, actually. Or else. You see, now it's a threat!

Book #5

Outwitting Squirrels

I got this one because it was recommended on, and it sounded funny. It reminded me of my grandfather a lot, too, because he is on this never ending quest to vanquish the squirrels from his bird feeder.

Book #6


This is a sequel to Leviathan, a book by Scott Westerfeld. If I remember correctly, it is set in a world that has two opposing societies, Creationists, and Darwinists. The Creationists use mechanical and steam powered stuff, while the Darwinists genetically engineer animals to do stuff. The protagonist dressed up as a guy (in a classic story) so she could work on this huge ship, the Leviathan, for the Darwinists. The Leviathan is this whole floating ecosystem, complete with glowing worms that light up at night. I loved Westerfeld's steampunk/science fiction world, and I'm excited to read his sequel. 

Hope you didn't mind my book talks too much.

<3 Gabi

Socks Today: I'm not wearing any socks, because I am on vacation and can do that. I am also wearing mismatched pajamas and a bathrobe, and it is 2pm. *stagnates*

Sunday, December 19, 2010

School's out, and I'm not particularly excited

Winter break just started. School's out for two weeks. I've kind of been staring into space, in shock.

Must. Do. Homework. 
Wait, where's the homework? 
Oh, my ISP.
I don't want to do my ISP, there must be some other homework.
Must. Do. Homework.
(Return to the beginning)

I guess I do have homework, my ISP for computers, but it is so huge and scary and intimidating that I don't even want to look at it right now. The thing is, if I had to create a game, like some of the people, I'd be excited, but I was assigned to code a lesson on shapes and a quiz. SHAPES?! Shapes. Are. Boring.
I'm sort of happy about how easy my assignment will be, though, because I won't have much animation to do and only a few buttons.

Enough about school. WINTER BREAK!
This break I'm going to go skiing for three days with my family at a semi-posh resort we've never really been able to afford, which is exciting. Then later on, I'm going to get to see my three guy friends from my old school who I miss very much. I've heard rumours that one has begun to wear a ponytail because his hair is so long, so I will come wielding scissors. Well, not really. I'll just threaten him. I think I'll try to get together with some more old friends as well. Oh , I printed off some sheet music for Seasons of Love, so I'll try to learn a new song too, since my piano lessons seem to have fallen through.

I know nobody actually reads up to this point, and that my diary-entries are boring. I'm sure that when I put up more pictures of W.O. my pageviews will skyrocket, at least. Speaking of that, I had better track down my camera. Bye!

--Gabi <3

Socks: Sports socks that are warm and soft.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Further Proof that Nerds will Rule the World

     Last evening, I was sitting at my laptop typing frantically. Why, you may ask? I had a speech due in English class the next day, and I had to finish writing it. Finally, it was done, so I practiced for an hour. I'd only be allowed ONE FREAKING CUE CARD for a four minute speech, so being the overachiever that I am, I was freaking out. I made everyone listen to me practice, and people actually laughed, and found it funny! The topic I chose? Nerds. 

     My school public speaking assignments generally end up as boring research speeches, while people fall asleep. Contrary to popular belief, sandwiches are really not that interesting. I decided to go for a less serious topic, so nerds it was. 

     I have to say, I learned a lot more from this assignment than I do for most assignments, even though I barely did any research. I learned about Wizard Rock, (Gred and Forge are my favourites, for now.) and I also managed to find some support for nerds taking over. 

     Ever heard of word drift? That's basically when a word changes in meaning over time. Way back when, I could have called someone hot, and that would result in pulled out fans, and some absolutely spiffing iced lemonade. Now, the result would be much different. (I thought about making an MS paint picture to illustrate this, but maybe later.) The same thing has just begun to happen with the word nerd, with more and more people calling themselves nerds, but there are still tons of people who think of nerds as a bad thing. So, WORD DRIFT IS HAPPENING RIGHT IN FRONT OF OUR EYES!! I figured that if the increasing number of nerds keeps going up, pretty soon we will be EVERYWHERE!!!

     It's also really neat that my classmates seemed interested in my talk about Wrock, NaNoWriMo, and pi. It seems to me that only a nerd would be interested in that sort of stuff, hence my class must be full of nerds. You see, the nerds are totally taking over. Soon World Suck will be vanquished! (look up John and Hank Green or Nerd Fighters if you don't understand that.

Okay, lecture over, goodbye!

DFTBA (don't forget to be awesome,)

Socks today: Both black, one with blue-green heels, one with pink heels. I think my friend and I may have scared the new girl by complimenting her socks. They were leopard print, we couldn't help ourselves!

P.S. Today is my former best friend's birthday. We haven't been close for a long time, and this is the first year we haven't been at the same school, so I haven't wished her happy birthday. It feels weird, but liberating as well. Mostly weird, unfortunately.