Thursday, August 28, 2008

TT17 - Thirteen Jobs I Have Had


Thirteen Things Jobs I Have Had


In honor of the impending Labour Day Holiday...

1. working the mini-cafe at the Minitonas Curling Rink that my grandparents managed. I was 12, and got to pour coffee, do dishes and serve my Grandma's famous Lemon Merangue Pie. So good people used to buy whole pies - in farm country, where everyone knows how to bake Blue Ribbon pastry. Service with a smile.

2. Summer Job ages 15 & 16 - recreation staff for the Community Services office in Swan River. Worked with underprivileged kids, adults with mental and physcial disabilities. Made me consider a career in special ed. The second summer changed all that. Too sad.

3. Waiting tables at the local Pizza Hut - too young to serve alcohol, but it paid the rent. Nothing worse than working as a waitress in a small community. No respect - and no tips.

4. Museum attendant - Swan Valley Museum - gave tours, washed floors, labelled artifacts, and sold stuff in the gift shop. Amazed I still took history as a minor at University.

5. Call centre - outbound calls, selling magazine subscriptions. I have great compassion for people who do this for a living - it is very tough work.

6. Ice Cream factory worker - worked on the assembly line making Drumsticks. Required great eye-hand coordination, and meant standing in one spot for 8 hours a day. However, my brain was free to ponder, and I did some of my best writing during that year.

7. Waitress - Dutch Maid Ice-Cream - did the breakfast shift and ran my ass off, serving bacon and eggs for $2.99, plus coffee. Met the most interesting people - some with very sad lives, some with real life challenges, and others whose lives could have been a major motion picture. Looking back - had a customer prophecy that I would have Ovarian Cancer. Thanks, Tony B - I hope you have been reunited with your beloved wife Helen, and all is well on the other side.

8. Cashier - Kelly's Stereo Mart - started on my 21st Birthday. Got to be around music, talk about music, listen to music, and go to free concerts.These were the days when there was a dozen or so music stores downtown. Anyone remember Opus 69 - Record Baron - Music City - Mothers - Pepper Records - Music Explosion - Records on Wheels - Impulse - Wherehouse - Autumn Stone - Sams - A&A - and others who have faded into the dim recesses of memory.

9. the 1980's - a Decade in Music - Ass't Manager/Manager - Pepper Records - crossed the street, and went down Portage Ave a couple blocks. What a long strange trip that was. A&A Records Madison Square - one of the first "big box" type music stores - a great concept that was doomed to fail nationwide. Did lots of instores with various musicians (Billy Bragg was the best - Mojo Nixon was too cool).

10. the 1990's - A Decade in Music Redux - HMV Eaton Place - the little store that could. Musiplexx - learned all about computers and the Internet and got to stretch my skills in inventory control and product buying. Finally, had to get out of the music biz for a bit. Tuesday to Saturday 2 - 11 pm is no kind of life.

11. Eatons Downtown - sold cosmetics at the Clinique Counter, and then became the Manager of the Shiseido Counter - and made more money than I ever had up to that point selling jars of $200 face cream (I swear it contains whale oil) to wrinkly women. Then friends started leaving copies of an ad at my counter - clippings in my mailbox at home - posted in the mail - and by email for ...

12. Chapters Indigo Bookstores - started as the Hear Music Manager, then ran the Arts section - then did Marketing - ending up as the Regional Manager for Outside Sales and Marketing. Met some cool authors (Guy Gavriel Kay, Terry Brooks, Robert Bateman among many), met a few head cases (Liona Boyd, David Suzuki among many), and got to introduce Preston Manning at an event (I can hear my Social Credit /CCF grandfather whirling like a dervish in his grave). Then they moved my job to Edmonton. I didn't go with it.

13. I became an Earthling. Great job - challenges me every day. Great boss - challenges me every day. Great team - work hard, play hard. I hope to stay there until I retire, or Dan starts another venture and needs a Trusty Sidekick.



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The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!



Thursday, August 21, 2008

TT# 16 - a quick and dirty List of my favourite foods


Thirteen Things about Foods I like

Not a particularly inspired or insightful TT this week - and my apologies for skipping last week - life is happening, and life is messy.

My favourite foods:

1. Cheeseburgers - the square meal in a round bun that you hold in your hands. (V'Jays On Main - the VJ's Special)
2. Onion Rings - or more specifically - Onion Loaf (a la Tony Roma's).
3. Pasta Del Giorno with Rose Sauce and Spicy Chicken, extra Garlic (Tomato Pie)
4. The Buffet at East India Company. 'Nuff said.
5. Jacinthe's Thai Curry (she learned how to make it from a Fish. True Story).
6. Jacinthe's 3-step Lamb Schezuan
7. Potatoes and onions done in foil on the BBQ
8. A thick juicy rare/med rare steak (Garwood Grill or by me.)
9. Moxie's Beef Vindaloo. Especially made by Adrien (ah, the memories)
10. La Fiesta's Three Enchilada plate, with that great sour salad.
11. okay - anything Joseph has ever cooked for me.
12. Jacinthe's home made double vanilla ice cream gives Merkato Gelato in all its glorious diverse flavours a serious run for my frozen-treat palate. Home cookin' wins every time.
13. right - just about everything that Jacinthe makes. I eat very well and am blessed to live with someone who is a gourmet cook in the slow food tradition.



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The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!



Thursday, August 7, 2008

TT # 15 - things I don't believe in


Thirteen Things I Don't Believe In


1. The Moon Landing - even though I have physically held a rock that "supposedly" came from the moon, and met and had conversations with 2 people who claim they've been there (Buzz Aldrin and James Irwin) - I'm just not convinced. Buzz had some mental health issues, and James became a religious fanatic - so I'm not taking their bona fides as bona fides. Hollywood can do anything. Jury is out.

2. The Lone Gunman Theory - I may have been born at night (11:56 pm) but I wasn't born LAST night. The Grassy Knoll is more than just the name of a great pop band, if ya know what I mean, jellybean.

3. While I'm on conspiracy theories - I don't believe that the Bush / Cheney administration was ignorant of terrorist plans for the attack on the Twin Towers, Pentagon etc... Let's also toss in the whole Hurricane Katrina debacle while we are at it - don't get me started.

4. That Elvis is alive, and well, and flipping burgers in a roadside diner in Butte Montana. I'd like to visit Graceland just to drive a spike through his mummified heart and put the rumors to rest. My sister is a big Elvis fan (and thank the Gods didn't name her only son after The King) but even she knows that Elvis has left the building. No encore. Turn on the house lights. Send the band home. The Fat Man has sung. Thank you, thank you very much.

5. That geriatric rock groups from the 50's and 60's should reform and be playing in casino lounges while cashing in on the memories of their aging fans. Especially if they were "one or two hit wonders" with no appreciable back catalogue other than their "One and Only Big Hit from the summer of '69" . If they do go on the road, the tickets shouldn't be more than $10/per original member still in the band. I'm sorry but "one original member" does not "A Nostalgia Act/Reunion Tour" make.

6. That telephone solicitors are inherently evil - they are just people doing a job, and who take a lot of grief and abuse and who are trying to earn a living. Doesn't matter if they are selling magazine subscriptions or taking a survey - they are doing what they need to do to make ends meet, and deserve at the very least a courteous "thank you, I'm not interested, and I understand you are simply doing a very difficult job - have a great evening" rather than a slammin hangup or a police whistle in their ear. As my old pappy would say "Couthen up" and treat the working poor with some dignity.

7. That Disco was evil. Its just music. The songs may have been stupid (more stupid than the rest of pop music?) but it really was just a 4/4 beat with a lot of hi-hat. Take me to Funky Town - you know you danced to it in secret in your living room. In your underwear.

8. That the Canada Food Guide makes any sense. When our agri-business is controlled by the monopolistic megafood producers, OF COURSE its going to reflect an unhealthy balance towards the high-profit crops. As a multi-cultural nation, we haven't been a meat and potatoes culture for quite a while now. The CFG needs to talk to a nutritionist or two that isn't in the pocket of the Food Corporations. And who aren't made of ethnic wonder bread.

9. That we, as individuals, can really do a whole heck of a lot to influence the current climate change crisis, but I do believe that it is important that we do all we can none the less.

10. That lifestyle should be legislated. I will follow this up with a TT13 that would be my election platform should I ever be lobotomized to run for public office. Watch this space.

11. we are a Christian nation - and therefor our statutory holidays should continue to revolve around the Christian calendar. See point 10. There will be clarification at a future time.

12. That Silence of the Lambs should have won any Academy Awards - or that Amy Winehouse should have won any Grammy Awards. Someone at Quality Control was asleep at the switch both times. WAKE UP! I demand a recount.

13. That the following are impossible - Peace in Our Time - A Roof over Every Head - A Chicken in Every Pot (or Tofurkey, as the case may be) - Clean Water in Abundance - Safe Streets regardless of postal code - Every Child a Cherished Child - Peace begins at Home and spreads to the World. War is Over if We Want It.



Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!


The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!