Apr 5, 2010

Change of Address!

Hello Friends, both new and old!

I have moved shop. This blog is soooo 2009. Come join me in 2010 and its re-designed glory!

The New, and IMPROVED, Raggedy Threads!

Please drop by and let me know what you think!

Don't worry, you won't lose me. All of the content here has been moved over. All new content will ONLY be added to the new location.

Some housekeeping:

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Thanks!

Apr 3, 2010

Life As A Human Article: Easter in Rome is Not for the Faint of Heart

Maybe I should back up a bit here, and explain my views towards religion. I'm what I call "vaguely Catholic". I was baptized, and I remember going to church sometimes when we were kids. My family celebrates Easter and Christmas, but these are really just wonderful excuses to overeat. It's what Jesus would want! Did we learn nothing from the whole feeding-a-million-people-with-half-a-fish story?

I know, I know. I'm going to hell. If it exists. That's the beauty of being vaguely Catholic. You can answer most religious questions with a shrug. Like this actual re-enactment of a conversation I had in a high school civilization class:

Me: I like Dürer.
Classmate: His paintings are evil. If you like them then God won't love you.
Me: Hmm...
Classmate: Don't you care that you're going to hell?
Me: (shrugging) Meh...[...read more]



Photo Credits:"Praying Hands" by Albrecht Dürer

Apr 1, 2010

Life As A Human Article: Dude, Pimp My Mice!

Anyone who has ever tried to sell anything will tell you how important it is to “network.” I put this in quotes because, as far as I can tell, it’s just a fancy term for talking to people. You let people know what it is you do, and then remind them at every opportunity. As a writer, I recognize that this is an important way to get people to read my stuff. I also recognize that I’m rubbish at it. I’m all, Hey, I have this blog that you could check out if you like, but it’s probably not your kind of thing so never mind… Awkward!...[...read more]


Photo Credit

Happy Lunar Year Of The Mouse © be_khe @ Flickr. Some Rights Reserved

Mar 26, 2010

Life As A Human Article: The Accidental Squatters


This is one of the many things I love about the west coast of Canada. We’re really not part of Canada at all. We pretend. We’re all Hockey!And Eh! and Yeah, winter TOTALLY SUCKS! With the snow…and the cold…BURR! But the rest of Canada, you should know something. We’re faking. We’re lying to your face. And my proof is that last weekend Andrea and I were lounging on a beach with our shoes and socks off. And not only were we too warm, but we got a little sun burnt.
I think so far in 2010 we’ve gotten about ten minutes of snow. March is actually a very confusing month for us, because we often look out the window and think THERE’S A BLIZZARD! But no, wait. It’s just the cherry blossoms playing in the warm breeze. PHEW!...[...read more]

Mar 21, 2010

Life As A Human Article: Welcome to My Brain


I am very impressionable. Seriously. My subconscious is a sponge. A super porous, extra absorbent sponge. If my brain were toilet paper, it would be Charmin Ultra. Actually, that’s a good analogy, considering the amount of crap my brain soaks up.

When I expose myself to a certain kind of media for extended periods of time, I start to think in that form. For example, if I read graphic novels I see my life in panels of images, and everyone has thought bubbles over their heads... [...read more]

Photo Credit: How to prepare the skull for surgery, brain exposed, c. 16th century © Brain Blogger – Flickr

Mar 14, 2010

Life as A Human Article: Me and My Laser Eyes

...When you're a shy, awkward little girl, the last thing you need is a big old pair of GLASSES on your face. And by big, I mean enormous. We’re talking the stylings of the late 80s – frames that took up half your face and made even the youngest of wearers look like old ladies half squinting/half glaring at everything. Add to this the braces and bad hair that came later and it's no wonder I was a social reject worthy of a John Hughes supporting cast role... [...read more]


Photo Credit: Cyclops Blasts From The Eyes © Dashu Pagias on Flickr. Some Rights Reserved.

Mar 11, 2010

Life As A Human Article: Pants Optional

I start to run, and at this exact moment I learn how un-nutritious my road trip diet of instant coffee and bread burnt over the flames of my little propane burner has been. My pants decide to make a break for it. I’m free!!! They don’t slide down my hips so much as leap off them, diving for the ground. I trip, I stumble (I don’t fall, by some miracle), I yank them back up, and do a sort of gimpy two-step back to the motel, one hand holding the waistband so tight and high I give myself a painful wedgie...[...read more]


Photo Credit: No Pants Dutchman © Wikicommons. Some rights reserved.

Mar 8, 2010

Life As A Human Article: Adventures in Snacking

How many jalapenos does one girl need?

To answer that question, let me take you back a few weeks. I was invited along to the movies by my friend Bev and her daughter, Aubrey. We buy our tickets, and then this conversation takes place:

Aubrey: Ohmygod, have you ever had jalapenos on popcorn?
Me: What?
Aubrey: It's sooo good.
Me: Nasty!
Aubrey: Awesome!
Me:
Aubrey: You have to try it.
Me: NEVER!
Aubrey: They're over here!
Bev: You can try some of mine...


Aubrey raided the condiment section of the snack bar and piled pickled jalapenos on top of her buttery bag of popcorn. Then Bev did the same.


As we walked away I heard a bored employee mutter Finally, something to do, as he moved to refill the decimated hot pepper supply...[...read more]



Photo CreditPopcorn Whoosh © Art Inspirations on Flickr

Mar 6, 2010

Life As A Human Article: Canada Reads. Do You?


In this mad world of technological gadgetry and sci-fi wonderment, I found myself falling head over heels for that old, simple broadcasting device. I'd always known it existed, but never really paid it much mind. Until a few years ago. I can't tell you specifically what happened. Something just...clicked, in my head, and there was no going back.
I could go on and on about the joys and marvels of the radio, and maybe I will one day. But not now. Today, gentle reader, I feel the need to wax poetic about one of my favouritest radio programs of all times.
It's called Canada Reads. And it's A.W.E.S.O.M.E. [...read more]

Mar 1, 2010

Life As A Human Article: It's Not Stalking if Everyone's Doing It

A few weeks ago my sister Melissa and I were on one of our dates. These usually involve beer and bad movies. I don’t mean bad like a John Travolta-produced movie (a little Battlefield Earth, anyone?) I mean the movies you know better than to like, but lovelovelove anyway (which for me includes A Knight’s Tale, Batman Forever and pretty much anything with Vin Diesel).

Our “dates” started after the whole Twilight-mania ignited a few years ago. We were trash talking everything about it (the movie, the books, the actors, the fans), and after our clever banter petered out, I said quietly, I kind of want to see it. To which Melissa sighed and said, Yeah, totally. [...read more]

Photo Credit: Man At Fridge © Flickr. Creative Commons. Some rights reserved.

Feb 24, 2010

It's Like Eating A Hug

My friend Brian from Halifax is in Vancouver, busy working at the Surrey venue for the Olympics. Hi Brian!

I haven't seen him in something like 8 years (which is crazy and makes me feel old, but that's beside the point). So I hopped on a ferry and braved the Olympic crowds to see him.

After an afternoon of wandering around in the glorious February sun on the non-Olympic side of town, we started looking for food. Specifically sushi. (In fact, when I asked Brian what he wanted to do, his two requests were sushi and big trees). We had to walk a surprisingly long distance of 4 blocks to find a restaurant, unheard of in Vancouver.

This place, whose name I helpfully forgot to look at, is somewhere on West 4th. And it very possibly serves the Best. Sushi. Ever.

On top of the Love Boat, which we just had to order on name alone, they had a supplementary menu that just listed weird and unusual rolls. We tried:

  • The Black Roll - made with what I guessed to be thai purple rice.
  • Cheese Bug - with a fair amount of cream cheese along with other more traditional fillings
  • Sushi Cake - basically sushi but layered in cake format and cut into cute wedges.

We ate ourselves silly, and I think the rest of the evening was spent replaying the meal, bite by bite. Remember when we tried...., then I ate the...., ohmygod I nearly died when I tasted....

As my sister Angie summed it up, it was like eating a hug.

And if you don't let your mind take you to the image of eating a person giving you a hug, all cannibal style, it's actually quite a lovely and accurate analogy. 

Feb 23, 2010

Olympic Gold Medals for Everyone!

Every two years, during the media build up to the Olympics, I sigh and grumble and complain. That? Again? Didn't we JUST have one, like two years ago?

And every two years I find myself glued to the TV for 14 days, spellbound and dumbstruck with what some people are able to do with their bodies. On purpose. They do this stuff ON PURPOSE.

Crazy.

The next time someone calls me crazy for liking to drive 16 hours a day all by myself I'm going to say, Have you even seen Skeleton? Head first down a glacier slide? And that's IOC sanctioned! [...read more]

Feb 20, 2010

LAAH Article: Why My MacBook is Better Than A Boyfriend


Another excerpt of a Life As A Human article for your enjoyment.


I recently treated myself to a new MacBook. Hey, I’m an unemployed, single gal currently "staying" with her mom, with two beater vehicles that are constantly trying to one-up each other on their creative repair needs. Why shouldn't I be dropping a thousand dollars on a shiny toy I don't really need?


It’s only been a few weeks, and I don't want to get ahead of myself. But so far this is the BEST RELATIONSHIP OF MY LIFE! [...read more]

Feb 17, 2010

Pump Up The Dork


Another Life As A Human article for your (hopeful) enjoyment!


Pump Up The Dork


A few nights ago I was hanging out with a friend. You know how it goes: some good food, a lot of wine, you're laughing, you're sharing, and BOOM! Someone thinks of a YouTube video that you just have to see right now. Something really poignant and relevant to what you’re talking about, and it'll only take a second.

So you watch it, and you laugh. And the computer's right there. So then you say, While you're here, I should show you... [...read more]



Feb 13, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!


To celebrate Valentine's day I have a new Life As A Human article for your enjoyment :)



To Me, With Love

I'm not against romantic relationships in theory. I just don't think it’s the be-all and end-all to life. The few relationships I've found myself in have all left me feeling…well…not quite me. Like I'm giving up or ignoring something fundamental. Something I can't put my finger on, but I just know is missing...[...read more]


Feb 11, 2010

LAAH Article: Arachnids and Winter Phenomena


My second article for Life As A Human! Enjoy this excerpt. Please check it out in full by visiting the mother ship. And comment comment comment!


Arachnids and Winter Phenomena

Being the Queen of the Procrasti-Nation (Get it? Ha, I slay me!), this morning I found myself with four articles to write and very little time to write them in.

"Enough is enough!" I said to myself, and I sat down at my desk, determined to get them done and out of my way so I could concentrate on my true passion: watching The Office reruns and drinking coffee.

Just as I'm getting settled and ready to write, what do I see? A spider, crawling around on the other side of my bedroom window curtain. Intruder
!... [...read more]

Feb 6, 2010

My First Life As A Human Article!


I'm very excited to say that my first article for the fabulous new website Life As A Human has been posted! Hurray!

Below is an excerpt. I would be very much obliged if you would do me the honours of going to the LAAH site, reading it, and posting a comment to make me look super popular and cool. It doesn't have to be a nice one. Take this as an opportunity to say what you've always wanted to. You know, stuff like, "Hey, you! Stop being so awesome, you dork!" Or whatever comes to mind.

Click here for the full article!

And tell your friends!


Inspiration Comes from the Darkest Places


I've wanted to be a writer ever since I was a little kid. I'm sure a big part of that can be attributed to the women in my young life. To my mom, for telling me tales that featured my stuffies as the fearless protagonists. Softina the rabbit and Bluey the blue bear, Lightning the giraffe, and even my sister’s Licky Licky Pink Teddy Bear all frolicked together happily in my bedtime stories. And to my Granny, for reading fairy tales with me, using a ruler to underline the sentence we were on so I wouldn't get confused.

I can even probably thank my two older sisters, because they were reading big kid books and, dammit, if they could do it so could I. Nothing can inspire you so much as some friendly sibling competition.

All this no doubt helped to turn me into a prolific reader. But there was someone very special who nudged me over the line from reader to writer.

Her name? [...read more]

Feb 4, 2010

Welcome to Life As A Human! (and the passing off of a friend...)

I've been neglecting my bloggerly duties. So sorry! Though, if anything this re-affirms my belief that I shouldn't have children. If I can't even keep a blog alive, how could I possibly be responsible for a tiny little being with actual physical needs?

My excuse for not posting for the last few weeks is that I've been working for this brand-shiny new bloggers website, Life As A Human!

It launched Feb 1st, and already it's getting a lot of attention. We have over 30 authors writing about all sorts of great stuff. You should check it out.

My first article for LAAH is coming out in a few days. Yippee!

Of course, good cannot exist in the world without bad. So to counter-balance the goodness and wonder that is Life As A Human, I got some terrible news last week.

Drew is sick.

Drew has been a very special part of my life. You may remember my excellent piece where I detail my complicated and passionate relationship with him: Drew and Me.

It all started one fair day in May almost four years ago. My cousin Andrew called me up and offered to introduce us. He's not much to look at, but he's cheap and reliable.

Andrew, you had me at cheap.

We met, and have barely been apart since.

Sure, he's had his problems. The lights don't work all the time. The window doesn't roll down. The stereo is possessed. Then there was that whole "needing a new engine" thing. But in the end we'd sort it out, and our relationship would be the stronger for it.

It got to the point that at family gatherings someone would say How's Drew? and Andrew would say I'm good. And the response would be, Not you. I was asking about Sarah's car.

Yes, he really was one of the family.

Last week, I took him to the mechanic for an oil change. Half an hour later I get a call. The news was not good. To sum up, if I drove him I risked a wheel breaking off and rolling away. And I wouldn't be able to stop, because of the whole "brakes not really working" thing.

Drew, I love you. I do. But no guy - mechanical or otherwise - is worth $1500 to fix.

Our breakup was swift. I removed my CD's, flashlight and axe, then drove him gingerly to Andrew's (the human), who graciously accepted him back. My pain will be his project.

But enough about me and my heartache. Go check out Life As A Human.

Go.

Now!

SHOO!

Jan 17, 2010

To Put A Child In My Belly, Or Not To Put A Child In My Belly

I've never wanted kids. When I was one myself, the thought terrified me. My mom (now, Mom, don't go beating yourself up for some sort of unintentional childhood psychosis you fed. This is meant to be FUNNY) told me that when you were ready Jesus would put a baby in your belly. This horrified me.The children I didn't want would be a gift from Jesus! Trying to make it better Mom added that if he gave me a baby he'd also give me the desire to have it. Great. Now Jesus would be messing with my mind, changing my brain so I wouldn't be a horrible mother.

In grade four when I learned how babies were really made (When a mommy and a daddy really love each other the daddy takes his - here, let me draw you a picture...) I was torn between feeling disgusted and sooo relieved. I had control! No spontaneous babies in this tummy, thank you very much. I'll be child free forever.

That being said, I'm getting to that age where I'm told a lot of women start to reconsider child-rearing options. That whole ticking clock and all. Every now and then I wonder to myself, Do I want a family? Little children running around, drawing me cute pictures with crayons and bringing me cake in bed on my birthday?

Do I?

And then, I'll pet-sit for someone. And the answer will come back, NNNOOOOOOO!!!!!!

Take Pika. So, so cute. And gentle. That whole nose thing I mentioned last time. Really, really funny. The first few days. Then she started doing it every. Single. Time. I sat at the computer. She was like one of those brats who unintentionally does something adorable and you laugh, so then they keep doing it for the attention and it drives you mental.


And Pika's old, and she stopped eating her food. That can't be good. So I'm in high panic mode for four days, doing everything I can to coax this dog to eat. Just a little. Just take a bite, for mommy, please? Because I'm pretty sure it's bad form to kill someone else's pet while the owners are on vacation.

Even when there's nothing wrong, you still have to be around regularly. That whole "feeding" thing has to happen a few times a day. They need to be escorted outside to use the washroom at regular intervals. And someone has to clean up after the vomit.

I love animals, and I enjoy looking out for them. I like being able to help my friends. But 14 days are my limit. At the end of that I'm ready to flee back to comforts of single living. No schedule. No responsibility for another life form. No worry of finding excrement on the floor if I'm late coming home.

And I'm not speaking from experience or anything, but I believe that kids are slightly more high-maintenance than pets. Maybe? A little?

So, the next time I get a struck with the question of kids, I have a whole battery of memories that I can use to talk myself off of that life-altering edge. Thanks, Pika!

Jan 14, 2010

Meet-a Pika

Hey Everyone, guess what I'm doing this week?

That's right. I'm dog sitting. Again.

Why is it that everyone, EVERYONE, around me is jetting off to fabulous destinations? Mexico, Spain, Vancouver. And if they think of me at all, is it to invite me along? Because they can't live without my sparkly, charming wit and...um...charm?

NO. They think that Sarah. She's got nothing better to do than come and care for our adorable pets while we go off and have wonderful fun without her.

Which is true.

So this week I'm looking after Pika. Part husky, part something else that I can't remember, Pika is 14, which I think makes her some age-defying druidic elder in dog years. She's deaf (or fakes it reaaaallly well), has gimpy hips, and the driest nose I've ever encountered on a dog.

I know this because she loves to come and stick it under my wrist when I'm at the computer. Not when I'm typing an email or something that can be interrupted with no consequences. Oh no. She does this only when I'm playing a game that has a time limitation. It's when I have sixty seconds left to collect the shiny gems and free the monkey face with the magical coins (I'm not addicted to Jungle Jewels, so don't even ask) that she'll come over and shove her nose under my mousing wrist, pushing the mouse away and demanding a nose scratch. I try to get her to come over to my left side so I can scratch with that hand while saving the jungle with my right. She'll have none of that. Right handed nose scratches are the only acceptable kind, apparently. Her insanely dry (and surprisingly strong) nose leaves little abrasions on my arm. I'm very delicate. But my Jungle Jewel scores are what's really suffering here.

Oh look, I'm turning this into another gaming rant. So sorry.

Cute dog. Right. Sooooo cute. Like yesterday, when I was on the phone in the den and she came and threw up right in the doorway. It wasn't even normal vomit. There was no pre-puke noises to alert me. She just opened her mouth and this really thick, slow flowing gunk oozed out for like a minute. Then she closed her mouth and looked at me like she's saying Will you clean this up already? It's disgusting.

Now any weird wet noise that comes from her makes my heart race. Will there be more gooey fluids emitted from her mouth? And she's a dog. She's constantly making weird, wet noises.

I may walk away from this with a nervous condition.

Jan 12, 2010

Technology and Crustaceans

I know that my previous success in working for a high tech internet company surprised a lot of people. Namely, anyone who knew me. I was never particularly interested in "computers" or "technology".

I remember when email first hit the scene. I was in high school when people started to get this internet thing at home. Our home package was something like $30 per month for 10 hours that could only be used between 6pm and 6am. It came with an email address the whole family shared. My school friends wanted to email in the evening, and I could never figure out how to enter in an email address correctly. It always bounced. The only way I could successfully send an email was to reply to one. New communications would not, could not, be initiated by me.

In 1998 I went traveling. Before I left, my 14 year old cousin suggested I set up an email account. But, I proclaimed, I won't be traveling with the house computer. Duh! He sat me down and explained all about free email sites like this crazy thing called "Hotmail". I just couldn't understand how I could access this from any computer. Email went directly to one specific computer. Everyone knew that!

12 years later and I've come a long way. I'm pretty good with computers. I can usually figure out what's wrong with one, and I may even be able to fix it myself. But I have to admit that this is only because of the information forced upon me during six years of working for an e-commerce site. Keeping up with technological advances is not something that comes naturally to me.

For example, guess what I learned yesterday?

You can pause TV.

Let me say that again.

YOU CAN PAUSE TV.

How crazy is that?

When I was a kid we had this tiny black and white TV with bunny ears and a dial to change the channels. But the dial was busted, so instead we used a crab claw whose pinchers fit into the dial mechanism perfectly.

Yes, I said crab claw.

To change channels:

1. Insert crab claw.
2. Gently apply torquing motion in the desired direction until correct channel is displayed.
3. Remove crab claw.
4. Hide from children.

Just like the modern day remote, who ever controlled the crab claw controlled the living room. Except our channel changer was very delicate, so we had to be careful in our fights for TV dominance. If that thing busted we could be stuck watching something lame like the news or weather updates FOREVER.

At some point we upgraded to a colour TV with a remote control, and a VCR player where we could tape one show while watching another. Mostly this technological advance was used to record X-Files and Paula Abdul music videos.

Then I moved out, and haven't had cable since. I've seen people with these things called "cable boxes" that add hundreds of channels (all which play the same three movies over and over) and add about five more remotes to the equation. But I'd never really used one. Until this week, when I once again found myself pet-sitting. Charlie's Angel: Full Throttle was on, and for a second I forgot that I'm not watching a DVD and hit the pause button. And it paused!

The TV!

PAUSED!

I feel like some hick from the 90's who's been cryogenically frozen and defrosts in the far away time of 2010, to find that life as she knows it has changed forever. Can I adapt? Is there a place for me in this world?

Can I sell my movie rights?

Jan 7, 2010

A Post About Nothing

Since my list of non-activities in 2009, a few people have asked me if I'll write a similar post for 2010. A list of goals, or non-goals, to do or to not-do in the following twelve months.

After thinking about this long and hard, here is my answer:

No.

And if you know me at all you'll guess that this has something to do with my commitment issues that influence every aspect of my life (relationships, employment, residence, etc).

And you'll be right.

The only thing I can say I'll accomplish in 2010 with any certainty is that I'll turn 31. Or 29, if I can get my TR (Time Reversal) application for the iTouch I don't own yet up and running in time.

Fingers crossed.