Category Archives: school

Gradumacation!

I had my convocation on Tuesday!  Officially a Master of Library and Information Studies, whoo!  It was pretty much what a graduation ceremony is, main surprise was when they let me keep the fancy Masters hat.  Totally giving it to the nephews, because small children in grad gear is freaking adorable.  Now I suppose I can’t call myself a grad student, merely an unemployed fightin’ enthusiast.

I got a bike!  I thought I might be too skittish to ride on the city streets, but it turns out I’m more foolhardy than terrified, as usual.  (Shannon Mason: “More stupid than scared, but she does have fun.”)  Fast bike goes fast!  Down a hill, whoosh!  Then I huff and puff up the hill, because I may practice kicks to the head recreationally but my leg muscles really aren’t used to this pumping action after only two days.

An observation in kickboxing last night.  If I ever were in a street fight, I would probably apologize to my opponents every time my form was off.  “Sorry, that knee really sucked!  Here, let me do it again.  Can you tell me if I don’t turn my hip over?”  Alternately, perennial teacher Kickboxing Erika would be giving tips to her opponents.  “Wait, wait.  If you bring up your left hand while coming at me with that right cross, you can protect your face from my counter.”

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Filed under exercise, kickboxing, school

Stick a fork in me, I’m done!

Oh man, oh man, the homework is finished, the classes are done, the exams don’t exist, my degree is finished!  All I need is to actually get handed the piece of paper in May, and I’ll be a big-person librarian.  I finished up my work on Wednesday.  Cut to me, on Thursday, completely lost and confused.  Seriously, it’s been so long since I didn’t have anything to do, I’m pretty sure I can’t function like that.  Apparently I need a job and nine million hobbies and parties to go to or I go batty, wandering around downtown, caressing bowls and produce.  Luckily, Friday had plenty of activities lined up!  I think two days of nothing to do would be the end of me.

Friday kickboxing was good times.  We worked on chest and abs, whoo!  I’m looking forward to being in some pain tomorrow.  For one exercise, you laid on your back with your legs straight up above you, and reached up to touch your toes.  Then you did a sit-up.  Then you touched your toes twice, and two sit-ups.  Then three times.  All the way up to fifteen.  I just did the math, and that’s 120 all together.  Urg.  But I did it!  We also did pushups, where your partner does a plank, and you do a pushup on one side of her (facing her), then walk your hands over her shoulders, two pushups on the other side, walk over her shoulders again, three pushups, up to ten.  I remember doing this at the bootcamp last summer and sucking at it so hard, so I was really pleased that I did it, if not elegantly (never elegantly), at least properly and finishing.

Then, kicking things!  We practiced countering a Thai kick with a kick to the inner thigh, which was fun even if I apparently missed that I was supposed to the throwing Thai kicks.  We had to keep our hands down to counter the kicks, which was OK because we were out of range of any punches, but it still felt counter-intuitive to have both hands down.  I now have a pretty nasty bruise inside my knee.  Bruise watch alert!  It’s been so long since I had a really satisfying bruise, I am excited.  I also got punched in the nose because I wasn’t paying attention while I was supposed to be picking jabs to the face.  This happens sometimes, but what was weirdly embarrassing about this time was that my nose started running like crazy!  I was actually worried it might be bleeding or something, even though I knew I hadn’t been hit very hard, it was just so runny!  And gross!  Anyway, that’s my completely necessary story about things that might happen if you get hit in the face.  The more you learn~

I went straight from kickboxing to the MLIS year-end party.  (I’m always entertained by getting dressed up fancy at the club, because usually I dash out in my sweaty clothes without even redoing my ponytail.)  Very nice event, but I would’ve killed for some munchies.  I tried to start a ridiculous dance party with Leah, Naomi and Monica, but by the time the real dance party started I’d apparently lost interest.  I have a very small window of dance-party, it would seem.  Anatoliy gave me very good job search advice, because he is the sweetest.  And generally I caroused and chatted with people.  No drinking, though, because I am poor and sometimes I just don’t feel like drinking.  (Often when I’m poor.)

Having a car is going well.  I am offering rides all over the place, because I feel I have been given a lot of rides and I’ve built up ride-karma or something like that.  And in three days I’ll be back to being carless, so there’s that.  But I’ve come up with a new slogan for myself, based on my driving abilities in a new city, being inexperienced.  You see, I’m not a jerk.  I signal when I switch lanes, I shoulder-check, I don’t tailgate.  My problem, you see, is that I’m profoundly stupid.  I just wind up in the wrong lane sometimes, or I don’t know the rules of turning in this intersection.  So I feel I need a bumper sticker that sums me up: “Rarely an asshole, but often an idiot”  And really, couldn’t this apply to so many of us?  It’s the human condition.  Sometimes, yes, we are assholes, but mostly we’re just rock-stupid.  I am onto something here.

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Filed under bootcamp, exercise, great ideas, kickboxing, school, shenanigans, stupid jokes

Scar Buddy!

Man, I totally discovered my scar buddy last night.  Sasha from the club and I have the same surgical scars on our arms from breaking our arms in various gnarly ways.  The scars are, like, two long straight scars, one either side of the forearm, where the doctors go in to put the stupid bones back together.  I have seriously never seen anyone else with these scars, so I was pretty excited.  Sasha broke his arm in a being cool in high school football, while I was an idiot child who fell off a hay bale.  We also have similar knee scars.  I’d say three scar match-ups make scar buddies.  As such, Sasha and I are scar buddies.  I think that’s only a thing you can have if you’ve lived a certain kind of life.  A poorly thought-out life.

Oh, we had some fun exercising last night.  Some switching from high knees (jumping-as-high-as-you-can-and-tucking-your-knees-to-your-chest) to squats (squatting).  One day, I will get trapped in an old school Super Mario game, and I will rock the crap out of it, and it will be all thanks to my constant practice at jumping and squatting, courtesy of Gerald’s kickboxing class.  “Oh yeah, here’s a block, I’mma jump up and break it.  Now here’s a ledge, just let me squat down and slide under it.  Not even breaking a sweat, hell yeah.”

We also did human leg presses, which I really love.  These are like a normal leg press you would do with weights, but weights are hard to find, so instead you use a person!  The funniest thing about these is, for me, I have a harder time being the weight than I do being the lifter.  It’s a real trust exercise!  You can’t actually have any of your weight on your feet, so you’re just barely balanced on the tips of your toes and trusting your partner won’t let you fall.  I trust, I trust, but I’m a huge baby about that stuff!  Another thing about this exercise is that is wasn’t designed for the ladies, so to speak.  There is the possibility I had a footprint in my cleavage when I got home, is what I’m saying.  It’s faded!  Maggie also said she could feel my ribs shifting around, which is so delightfully weird.  I kept getting told to engage my abs.  I’m told that a lot.  I think, really, I should just do that automatically, all the time.  Kickboxing, yoga, at the grocery store, sitting in class.  Just Shannon, engaging her abs.

We did a lot of Thai kicks, which I love and got some good pointers on so I’m better at now.  Thai kicks are like a round kick, but with the shin contacting instead of the foot, and they are very fun.  (I would find a video, but we’re getting into kickboxing/Muay Thai distinctions that the YouTube search algorithms are just not equipped to deal with.)  Anyway, basically with a Thai kick you can kick a person from the same range that you can punch them from, and that is just gravy.  Those Thais think of everything!

I have looking through my tags, and I noticed a lot of my entries are tagged “shenanigans”.  If I were naming this blog now, I probably would’ve gone for some sort of pun, along the lines of “Shannon-igans”.  Which is probably why it’s good that I’m not naming this blog  now.  I would’ve had my internetting license taken away right then and there.

Oh wow, in other blog news, I might start doing some sort of weekly linkspam of all those ridiculous links I put up on Facebook, since they are apparently a source of excellent time-wastitude and not everyone reading this on my Facebook and anything I can do to spread the link/timewasting love is cool with me.  If I put them in a separate post, I’ll make sure they don’t post automatically to Facebook, just because a Facebook update that the blog post of all my links that I put up on Facebook last week is just too tedious for thought.  Oh man, oh man, but I will value-add.  I will tell you the best parts of the articles to read.  “Just skip to the middle, that’s the cool part.”  I’ve been holding off on that, but forget it, I’m just gonna do that from now on.  “Paragraph three is where it’s at.  Just past the picture.”

I have a week and a half left of this graduate degree, then I will be done!  Done like dinner, stick a fork in me!  So much homework, so I am blogging.  No energy for shenanigans.  Not even one shenanigan.  Must finish projects.

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Filed under exercise, fucking inanity, great ideas, kickboxing, school

Spin me right round

Chilling on the desk.  Man, things are winding down so fast, pretty soon you guys won’t be getting reference desk updates from me any more.  And if I were a more together sort of person, I would actually know the date I finish and everything.  I like to be surprised, OK?  My life is a goddamned magical journey.

I fiddled with the my blog some more, and now I have a tag cloud (ooohhhh) and a blogroll (woooow).  And I put the Archives way at the bottom, because fuck archives.  Not the discipline, I’m cool with the discipline.  I also have no specific hostility toward that class other people are in but I am not.  But the box.  On my page.  That I feel obligated to have, but it’s throwing off my feeling of design.  Man, fuck that box.  Also, regarding the blogroll.  There’s four of them for some reason, so there’s that.  And, yes, I know I have a loose definition of the word “blog”, in that many of my links are not remotely blogs, by any stretch of the imagination, not at all.  Anyway, I only inflicted one linguistics blog on you, and zero newsy-politics things, because this is a fun-times blog and I am a deeply insecure person.

In “punching things” news, I have been terribly slack this week because school classes are so close to being finished and homework is, like, so totally real, dude.  I didn’t get to the club at all this week, as I am a huge lame-o.  But this was the last week of Dal classes for a while, so I made sure to get there.   We did piggyback calf-raises, which is my favourite way to do calf-raises.  Then we learned how to dodge a round kick to the head, which meant your partner had to miss kicking you in the head, repeatedly.  Holy crap, there is just no way to make that look graceful.  Your leg goes way up high and then just sails away into the ether and you spin.  At this point, apparently your best bet is one of those cool spinning back kicks because just why the fuck not?  You have to salvage that stupidness by trying something extra-awesome, and you’re already spinning.

Attended a fancy drinks night and drank fancily.  My contribution to food was Superstore sushi, because I suck like that.  And sushi is awesome, even if it’s from the Superstore.  Anyway, I said incandescently hilarious things that I can’t repeat here because I forget what I said, which I’m pretty sure is my brain is trying to protect all of you from me.  (Every time I get close to remembering, I have a seizure.  True story, by which I mean complete lie.)

I got that Firefox 4, which is kind of weirding me out.  It switched around the “open link in new window” and “open link in new tab” buttons are on their right-click menu, and I don’t know if you guys know this about me, but I open pretty much every link ever in a new tab.  So I keep opening things in new windows accidentally and crying in frustration and throwing things out the window and setting fires.  Now I’m at work and everything’s backwards again and I’m messing up backwards.  Pretty sure this is hell.  If I were stubbing my toe and biting on tinfoil, it would definitely be hell.

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So damn lazy

I’ve had so much homework, so I’ve been skipping my various ass-kicking classes.  Well, two of them this week.  Not too bad, I suppose.  Except I’ve been writing boring papers instead of working out/beating ass.  My little row of post-it notes is getting steadily shorter, though!  Success!

Did do a nice amount of sparring on Saturday, though, mainly with Rosie.  We’re well-matched, so it was really fun to spar together.  We were also practicing trash-talking with each other.  I think I’m too nice to be a good trash-talker.  Oh well!  We were doing a lot of practice with the clinch, learning how to escape the clinch and immediately lock your opponent up in your own clinch.  So Rosie and I decided to try to see how long we could keep going with an uninterrupted chain of clinches.  Rosie would get me, then I’d get her, then she’d get me… I think we had up to five or six in a row before we gave up.  Anyway, now I have this ideal of the Eternal Clinch.  It’s where warriors go when they die.  It’s like poetry, because I don’t understand poetry.

Went clubbing Saturday night.  I learned that people who go clubbing with leg casts receive lots of high fives.  As for me, I was planning on having bare legs because clubs are hot and sweaty, but I realized when I had my dress on that my legs were all bruised.  Dang!  The life of a lady fighter is a tough one.  And like five of the guys I saw wandering around had no shirts on.  Lucky bastards.

We discussed blogs in class today, and the prof asked who had blogs, and what did they put on their blogrolls.  Man, I don’t have a blogroll.  I read blogs, but a lot of them are newsy, political things.  Or completely ridiculous.  I guess I should make a blogroll.  I also want to go through and start tagging posts as to topic.  It’s hard!  Every single post is just going to be labeled “red hot inanity”.

Kathleen and I went to a talk on repaying student loans on Monday, which was super-informative and I will share my notes on it with whoever wants them.  Like twelve people from all of Dalhousie came, and three of them were from the library school, because we are awesome dorks.  The guy who put it on had a vocal cadence kind of like a movie thug, though, which made me think that Student Loans may have repurposed him from “collections” or something.  They have this new image, they’ve stopped cutting off thumbs and breaking kneecaps, they need to find something for this guy to do, as far away from a switchblade as possible.

Yesterday I was having a weirdly high self-esteem day.  I mean, my self-esteem is pretty high anyway, but yesterday it was just off the charts.  I really should’ve written some cover letters, but they might’ve gone badly.  “Why should you hire Shannon?  Because I rock.  I will rock the reference right outta your desks.  Call me, bitches~  Peace out, double kiss.”

I had the great brainwave today that we should all write cover letters for each other.  Because we’d be more relaxed, and it’s easier to talk up someone else than yourself.  Again, this might go badly.  “If you don’t hire Kathleen, I will come for you.  In the night!

OK, I’ve added tags to this post.  Holy crap, are they inane.  I don’t know how specific I’m supposed to get.  I’ll go back and add them to my previous posts, too, when I’m feeling like avoiding homework sometime.  Oh, man, maybe I’ll even add that excerpt thing, a blogroll, and I’ll be like a fully formed blogger.

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Filed under fucking inanity, job search, kickboxing, school

Who would pay to see this?

Man, so, in kickboxing today, we were practicing stuff with jabs.  So we had to keep jabbing, over and over again, which, if you don’t know, is the quick little punch you throw with you left hand.  Needless to say, as the exercise continued, the left arm got more and more tired.  Rosie and I were discussing how it was good conditioning for an actual fight, but I figured an actual fight would probably let you use your other arm eventually.  Then it dawned on me.  The World Jab Championships!  I have no idea how these fights would be set up, all I know is that they would have to go on for hours, and they could only involve jabs.  Two men enter the cage, only the best jabber leaves.  Oh yeah, this idea is gold.

My hair is becoming a definite issue.  It’s gotten so long that the bottom of my ponytail is getting all sweaty and tangled up over my face while I’m training.  Maybe I need to figure out french braids.  Or become less disgusting, one of these.

Tuesday kickboxing involved an exercise where Gerald let us chose “Do you want to do 20 pushups on your own count, or 10 on my count?”  We voted 20 on our own.  So he switched to 30 on our own, or 15 on his count.  Dammit!  Basically, the number would keep going up until we agreed to let him count the pushups.  We did 5 reps of 15, and he was, like, “If you think about it, 75 isn’t really that many pushups.”  I’d whine about it, but my sweet biceps speak for themselves.  And they ask for more pushups.

(Oh yeah, I discovered that, whatever else may suck about them, doing pushups on your knuckles is way easier on your wrists.  So, you look completely hardcore, make your punchy muscles… punchier, and keep your delicate, ladylike wrists in prime tea-drinking condition.)

I had some fun times making myself useful at an office today, for a group project.  Cubicle fun!  Well, really, I was just acutely aware of the fact that other people could probably hear me talking.  Weirdly, I worked in a cubicle all summer, but they were the waist-high cubicles, and the fact that I could see everyone anyway just led to me being as loud and giggle-fabulous as I usually am.  As soon as I can’t see people, apparently it’s time for stage whispers and miming stuff out.

It is homework season!  I seriously have less than a month left of classes, I don’t understand.  Basically, I’m doing lots of homework and neglecting my poor blog because I have nothing interesting to write about.  Today I spent hours looking for trade publications on the dairy industry!  Whoo!  I have to say, I’m kind of disappointed that I didn’t run across any sort of skin magazine called, like, “Canadian Milkman”.  Not that I’m looking for that, but I feel like it should exist.  It’s a matter of principle!  Sexy milkman principle.

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Got my jill!

Went with Kathleen to my first yoga class in ages this week.  Very nice!  Tiny class, and the instructor will actually perform corrections, which I love and the yoga people at the gym never did.  This instructor made us do some of that terribly athletic stuff, too, which I always resent in yoga for some reason, despite relishing with Gerald.  Planks belong in bootcamp, god damn you!  But seriously, I liked it.  I have the world’s shittiest plank, anywhere I can practice it is probably for the best.

Gerald said that he wouldn’t let us spar any more unless we got cups.  Oh yes, Jessie solved my mystery for me, there are girl cups, they are called jills.  It is the cutest name for a thing on your crotch ever!  Anyway, I have one, I’ve been avoiding wearing it but I guess I’ll have to now.  I actually got kicked in the relevant area fairly hard last week, and I can see the value of the jill, good to get it before I get kicked really hard.  Oh yeah, to prove we’re wearing them, Gerald will ask “who’s knockin’?” and then you knock on your crotch.  None of this is a euphemism for anything.  Kickboxing is weird.

I have homework I should be starting, but I’m updating my blog instead.  Either I’m really slacking off on my homework… or really dedicated to my blog.  You decide!  Seriously, January is almost finished, how does that even make sense?

I’m introducing a new segment to my blog to annoy Kathleen called: Whatever Policies!  It is about my stupid policies.  Today I will talk about how I broke my No Pants Policy by buying pants last night, from the mall and everything.  They are jeans, but they’re pretty soft so hopefully not completely uncomfortable.  I bought them so I can go for walks in the woods and not get ticks on my bare legs, but they’re actually really cute pants and now I don’t want to get them torn and tick-infested.  My life is terribly difficult.  Is there a policy for that?

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Filed under exercise, fucking inanity, school, Whatever Policies, yoga