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The definitive host: April 2009

The definitive host

de·fin·i·tive host (duh-fin'eh-tiv) n. 1) An organism where a parasite undergoes the adult and sexual stages of its reproductive cycle 2) Someone you go to for interesting stories and/or facts, and puts on one hell of a dinner party 3) This blog, devoted to science and other geeky subjects

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Life Will Find A Way

First off, I am NOT dead ... just a temporary hiatus as I went home to relax and unwind from the stresses that have accumulated during the school year.

It hasn't all been fun and games though, as a few interesting developments have popped up.

Firstly, I have an internship and there is a chance it could be one of the elusive 'paid' positions, with even an opportunity of a part-time job after the summer ends.

Secondly, my major research project is shaping up and beginning to semi-come together. I have narrowed down my focus, thanks to my supervisor, and even streamlined my budget! As for what it's on, that will be the subject of a later post.

And lastly, I saw a VERY interesting show last night. It was entitles, "Life After People" and it extrapolated, based on scientific observations, what the Earth would look like if all the humans suddenly disappeared. If we all went POOF, what would happen in: one day, a week, a month, a year, 10 years, 100 years, 500 years, 1,000 years?

And it ended with a a very interesting statement, that life existed before people, and life will continue afterwards. However, one thing is for certain, after 1,000 years, nearly all traces of humans presence will disappear.

Kind of makes all your troubles seem small and insignificant, eh?

And that made me think of a line from one of my favourite movies of all time, Jurassic Park.

"All I'm saying is that life ... finds a way"

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Friday, April 10, 2009

A Happy-er Post

Well, I am FINALLY back home for a little bit, after months of toiling in J-School.

When I got home, we had a big dinner with family and friends, and an interesting note was brought up.

One of my sister's best friends brought something up.

"David, what's up with J-School? I mean, do you hate it there or something? All your blogs of late have been sad and kinda depressing about how much you hate it there and how much the job sucks. Write something HAPPIER."

And apparently, it's not just me! According to Claire's blog, Take Your Blazer and Get Out, she was approached by an incoming MJ student and was asked if she actually hates the program.

Let's get it straight ... I do NOT hate the MJ program. It is a very busy and stressful program. You are kept busy almost all the time, and sometimes, the never-ending deadlines and stress of producing something "newsy" gets annoying.

However, I have done stuff I never would have thought, and put some pretty good stuff together. I have mentioned what I've liked in previous posts, so I will not re-hash it here, but there are quite a few.

I've also met the 20 excellent people in my MJ program, and made a lot of friends. They are all fantastic! Really.

And, like Claire mentioned, people tend to blog about something odd or interesting that has happened to them, not so much the rare days off or days where you are just too tired to do anything.

Now, this has seemed more reflective than happy ... so let's inject some joy into the jelly centre of this post.

I FINALLY got an internship! I've been trying to get one since January, and it is a lot harder than you would think, even if you are willing to go unpaid. But, I got one working with the government (as with almost everyone else in Ottawa).

It will be interesting, and hopefully, a good time :)

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Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The Omen

Well, it's done ... sorta.

Last week was the last week of classes for the program, and all of us survived. Twenty-one walked through the doors at the beginning of the year, and 21 walked out on Friday.

It was a hard, hard year. And a rough last day, when I had to be the second in command in charge of a newscast. That's right, I was our version of Commander Ryker.

It wasn't easy telling people what to do, how to do it, what to change, and the like. I'm pretty sure I pissed more than a few people off with my popping into their editing booths. But, if it wasn't me, it wouldn't have been done and the newscast wouldn't have turned out so well.

But, I have learned a lot and enjoyed things I never would have done if I would have stayed in Biology. I got to edit sound, create a radio documentary about snow shoeing, TV newscasts, video editing, and many more.

And I got to find out stuff that I enjoyed doing that I never would have found out, like copy editing or doing camera work.

So, once classes were done, we all got together for a farewell party and had a good time. Drinks were had, hip flasks were exchanged, fruit was hanged low and songs were sung.

Then, the reality set it. While others were done, I still had a 600 word assignment and a 15 page essay to write. FUN times.

Fast forward to today, when I was finishing up my 15 page paper and other assorted stuff (other assignment will wait until tomorrow), and I was sitting at my computer reading over my essay.

When, the case of pop on my desk spontaneously fell to the floor with a CRASH! My head bolted up, and upon noticing it, I relaxed and decided to pick it up.

As I got out of my chair and bent down to pick it up, when out of the blue, there was a loud BANG! Followed by another ... BANG!

My heart probably missed about 2.5 "lub-dubs" until I realized what had happened.

The pop cans ... in their box ... had exploded.

The very same box I was a mere six inches away from.

As if by some sort of divine intervention, only two had exploded out of six, and the damage was contained within the pop can box.

In conversation with a friend, she said it was an omen.

Me - An omen for what? That my brain will soon explode like a can of Mountain Dew?
Her - Or....your summer will be an explosion of fun
Me - How? I don't even have an internship yet ...
Her - Or, how about an explosion of surprises!
Me - I've had enough surprises for today, I'd settle for some bland-ness
Her - Not with a sudden explosion of flavour!
Me - Hahaha, "Do the Dew" Indeed

Maybe it was an omen, as I am leaving for home tomorrow. And, like the Queen christened ships, so must my floor be blessed with the spilling of the pukish green liquid that is the Dew.

The following is a mock-up of what occurred, with the faces and clothes changed to protect the innocent victims.

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