Friday, May 15, 2009
I have tons of things to talk about, just not enough time to write about it! And now that I finally have a bit of time, I forgot what I wanted to write about. Oh, wait, no, I remembered. Please keep in mind that I started writing this at 5 a.m., so chances are, half of it will not make sense and/or be grammatically incorrect. I apologize in advance.
I've discovered that there are two types of people (well, there are a million types of people, but for the sake of this blog right here, we're going to say there are two types...just go with me here); there are people who actually felt a strong connection with the university or college they attended and there are people who didn't. I'm in the people who didn't category. This is not to say I didn't feel I "belonged" or anything, I just don't feel as strongly towards it as others.
I was perusing Facebook this morning, and I noticed that there was a group made called "I Miss My Trent Friends." It got me thinking. I don't have any "Trent Friends." I went to Trent for four years. I met lots of people during that time. None of them are "Trent Friends." They're just friends. Or aquaintances. But they're not specific to the university. And then I thought, "Did I not experience university the right way?" And the answer is: Maybe.
Not that I had a bad experience of university by any means. The difference was, however, I never lived in residence and I never lived with roommates. In my first year of unversity, I lived at home with my parents. Saved money and I didn't have to share bathrooms with an entire floor of strangers (Not feeling like I missed out on anything with that, I'll tell ya!). After first year I got married and moved in with my husband. Avoided the roommate from hell issue (although sometimes that's debatable, ha ha).
I never lived like a student. I didn't have the old, brown and orange tweed hand me down chesterfield (do people still call couches chesterfields? I feel it's only appropriate to call them that when they're from the 60's) that would "do for now," since people would just be drinking and passing out on it. I didn't have that one roommate who would do her share of the chores (oh wait, I had that husband who didn't do any of the chores! Kidding...he did the dishes...once). I never wore pajamas to class, because my bedroom was 3 seconds from the lecture hall (I wore pajamas to class because I forgot to do laundry that morning and had no clean pants! Again, kidding...I think).
These experiences seem to be what many think make up a university experience. I never had them. However, I don't feel like I missed out on anything. I had a different university experience. One that didn't solely involve school. In fact, university seemed to be the background to my life, as opposed to being my entire life. My family and my job seemed to come first. And then, when I got around to it, came university life. I also found it funny whenever I mentioned the fact that I worked while going to university, many professors seemed shocked. I never realized that so many people didn't work while going to university. I don't know how they could afford not to! Even student loans don't cover everything.
It's just funny, how everyone sees things differently. Some cherish all their university memories. I cherish the memories I had while I attended university, but they don't necessarily involve the university. But I wouldn't have wanted it any other way.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
When this fact dawned on me the other day, I couldn't help but wonder what separated the boy bands from other people in the music industry. I mean, aside from the annoying lyrics and the fact that they all seem to be clones of one another. My first thought was that they are all robots. Seems very likely. Robots tend to do what they're programmed to do, and boy bands seemed to do just that. However, I realized that robots would probably malfunction in the inevitable scenes of the music videos where they boys are dancing/singing/crying/being idiots in the rain. I mean, if there's one thing I do know, robots do not like water. So that theory was shot down. Then I thought that the boy bands were comprised of puppets! Sure! Why not? Puppets do what the puppet master tells them to! They can dance around if the puppeteer directs them to do so! But of course, that's not plausible, since these guys probably already have something shoved up their ass there's no room for a puppeteer's hand (too far? Oops!).
So I came up with this list, using some of the boy bands I remember as examples. The Ten Commandments of Boy Bandom. Well, actually, it's a little more than ten. More like Fifteen. Either way, this is what I came up with! Now, keep in mind that not every boy band follows every single commandment. Much like many Christians I know. Haha!
1. Thou shalt have a lame band name that thou thinks is clever.
B4-4 - The number before 4 is 3, which is how many band members there were! How clever is that?!
98 Degrees - These guys thought they were hot, so they named their band a high temperature. It's a good thing they used fahrenheit. I mean, if you called your band 36.67 Degrees, it wouldn't sound as hot. Still, clever!
'N Sync - They took the last letter of each of their names and made it into this clever little acronym! It almost says In Sync! Which they thought they were! Although, I'm pretty sure Lance's name doesn't end with an N, so I'm not sure why they didn't change it to 'E Sync or 'N Syec when he replaced the former member, "Jason."
5ive - They replaced the "F" with a "5"! And there were five members in the band! I don't think you can get more clever than that!
2. Thou shalt have one old guy in the band.
Backstreet Boys - Remember Kevin? I'm pretty sure he was doing this boy band gig because retirement was boring.
'N Sync - Joey was probably one of the other guys' uncle.
3. Thou shalt have some band memebers be related.
Backstreet Boys - Kevin and Brian were father and son...er, I mean cousins.
98 Degrees - Nick and ...other Nick were brothers.
Hanson - They were all sisters.
New Kids on the Block - Jonathan and Jordan were brothers.
B4-4 - Those creepy twins were ...twins.
4. Thou shalt use a retarded form of English in titles of your songs.
5ive - "Slam Dunk da Funk." Replacing the word "the" with the word "da" really shows their awesomeness.
'NSync - "Bring in da Noise." See above.
New Kids on the Block - "Sexify My Love." Seriously? Sexify is passing as a word these days? And how does one sexify something?
Hanson - "Mmmbop." I'm pretty sure that one's for the old dictionairy. I can see Webster defining it now; "Mmmbop - a period of time where you realize just how idiotic the really word is."
5. Thou shalt use the word "baby" or "girl" way too much.
New Kids on the Block - Ok, these guys have the word "girl" in almost every single chorus they sing. For example: "Cover Girl," "Please Don't Go Girl," "Be My Girl," "Stop It Girl," "Hangin' Tough Girl"...oh, that last one might not be right. But the point is, there were a lot of them.
Backstreet Boys - Every second word is pretty much "baby." I wonder if they're singing to an infant?
6. Thou shalt have some bizarre way of making young girls scream and cry.
Every boy band seems to have this affect on young girls...and a select few boys. I don't get it! I never once screamed over a boy band. I mean, I was the right demographic, so why not me? I feel like I missed out.
7. Thou shalt not play thine own instruments.
The only acception to this rule seems to be family bands (i.e. Hanson, the Jonas Brothers, the Moffats). Every other boy band seems to focus way too much on their awesome dance moves and matching outfits.
8. Thou shalt have one "bad boy" in the band.
Backstreet Boys - A.J. had a goatee so that makes him bad.
'NSync - I think Chris was the bad boy cause he had dreadlocks. I'm not sure.
New Kids On The Block - Donnie was definitely the bad boy. He had the "I'm an asshole but you love it anyways" look down pat. Plus, I'm pretty sure the tabloids said he burnt down an entire hotel. And you know the tabloids are always right.
9. Thou shalt have one sensitive guy who will inevitably come out of the closet.
'NSYNC - Well, we saw this one coming. Lance decided to come clean with his fans and tell them he was gay. Millions of girls around the world cried out, "Meh." Since by this time most of them have moved on from having a crush on the deep voiced blond and started focusing on things like paying bills or whether they thought the 15 year age gap between them and the Jonas Brothers would really matter all that much if they were truly in love. Plus, I'm sure deep down everyone saw that one coming.
Backstreet Boys - I'm pretty sure Howie's gay. You can just tell. And Brian's so gay that he's straight.
5ive - That guy with the "Jamaican" Accent...probably gay.
10. Thou shalt have horrible lyrics.
Backstreet Boys - Oh where to begin. I'll just pick the first song I heard by these guys. "Quit Playin' Games With My Heart" from their "Backstreet's Back" Album.
Quit playin' games with my heart (with my heart)
Before you tear us apart (my heart)
Quit playin' games with my heart
I should've known from the start
You know you've gotta stop (from my heart)
You're tearin' us apart (my heart, my heart)
Quit playin' games with my heart
'NSYNC - Well this is an excerpt from the song "It Makes Me Ill" from their "No Strings Attached" album.
Call me a hater, if you want to
But I only hate on him 'cause I want you
Say I'm trippin' if you feel like
But you without me ain't right (ain't right)
You can say I'm crazy, if you want to
That's true-- I'm crazy 'bout you
You could say I'm breakin' down inside (inside)
'Cause I can't see you with another guy
I really could go on and on with these bands, but I'm only going go for two. Just so you see my point.
11. Thou shalt act gangsta, especially if thou is white.
Eminem's got nothing on these boys. They wore the dreadlocks, the baggy pants, the backwards baseball caps, etc. They were gangsta through and through.
12. Thou shalt use thine arms a lot whilst singing to the ladies.
Every notice that when boy bands are singing, they spread their arms out like they're trying to fly or something? And there's always a wind machine in the videos. Just watch any video by any boy band, I bet you'll see one of them spreading their arms while they sing. And you'll probably see that it's slightly windy.
13. Thou shalt have that one guy in the band whom everyone forgets.
Backstreet Boys - Everyone forgets that one guy...uh...oh, Howie D! He's the least liked guy in the band. And probably the only one that didn't make a big spectacle out of himself.
'NSYNC - Bet everyone forgot about ol' Chris. You know, the one who had dreadlocks and wore goggles on his head? I swear, he was in the band!
98 Degrees - I forget everyone except Nick. I just call them Nick and other Nicks. They all look the same to me anyways.
New Kids On The Block - I always forgot about Jonathan and sometimes Danny. Although, Danny had a rat tail, so I usually remembered him for that hideous decision.
14. Thou shalt have a signiture dance move.
Backstreet Boys - Watch the "(Everybody) Backstreet's Back" video. That whole dance sequence is their signiture move.
'NSYNC - Definitely their "Bye Bye Bye" dance.
New Kids On The Block - The "arms waving in the air like you really just don't care" move from "Hangin' Tough" is known worldwide.
The rest of the boy bands have the "stand in one spot and bob the rest of your body forward to the beat" move. It's pretty sweet.
15. Thou shalt have lyrics riddled with sexual innuendos.
B44 - "If you get down on me I'll get down on you." I'm not sure what the innuendo is here. It's pretty obvious what they're going for. I don't know what else this could mean?
'NSYNC - "You got it, I want it"...etc. You know they only became a boy band because they thought it would get them laid. Except Lance. He just really loved to sing and dance.
5ive - "If Ya Gettin' Down." Hot. They don't even try to disguise it.
Backstreet Boys - "The Perfect Fan" Yeah, like this was really about their mothers. Gross, guys.
Hanson - "Mmmbop"...you know what that really means.
So, as you can see, there are several things that separate the boy bands from the...men bands? These 15 Commandments are the reason the boy bands rose to stardom. However, these same commandments were also the cause of their endangerment and future extinction (hey, I can hope, can't I?).
Monday, March 23, 2009
But that's not the point of this post. I got to thinking about my childhood due to the last two posts I have. One thing that really sticks out in my mind are the television shows we used to watch. Now, you'd think that since we had only three channels we wouldn't have watched many shows at all. Apparently that's not the case at all.
I've compiled a list of some of my favourite childhood shows. I hope I don't leave any crucial shows out, but that's bound to happen. Let me know if you remember any of these gems!
Dear Aunt Agnes
"Dear Aunt Agnes, remember, you said you'd help me out if you could..."
Good old TVO programming. This show was completely Canadian. To my surprise and delight, I actually found a part of an old episode on youtube. If you didn't grow up in Ontario, chances are you missed out on this classic. Basically, it was about a forgetful old woman who takes care of her niece's children while she's away on business for a while. I tried to find a picture of the cast or even the opening credits, but I came up with nothing. Still, look it up on youtube - you might just remember this one!
"Join In! Cast your cares away...Join In! Fun is comin' your way! ...Join in! It's a brand new day! Join in! So get ready to play..."
Another TVO classic. This one was filmed (in part) in Lindsay, Ontario, which was fairly close to where I grew up and the town in which some of my relatives lived. So that in itself was kind of neat in my eyes. This show had three main characters - Zak, Jacob and Nikki (who was later replaced by Kia) who all shared an Art studio. There were these wooden dolls that lived in the window sill that came to life (I guess they were magic?) and a juice train. Trust me, you'll remember the juice train if you remember anything about this show. Again, I couldn't find a picture of this one to post.
This was a Saturday morning cartoon favourite in the Morrissey household. It started off with a puppet dog named Eliot (who happened to be a cartoonist), and went into the adventures of Ace, the cartoon dog who was created by Eliot. Ace was a detective, see, and he solved crimes and mysteries. Good times.
Another Saturday morning favourite. This is not to be confused with the COPS showing "real" police officers arresting rednecks and featuring Inner Circle's reggae classic "Bad Boys." This was C.O.P.S. (or Central Organization of Police Specialists). This was a cartoon about futuristic cops (i.e. Bulletproof, LongArm and Taser) "fighting crime in future time" against "Big Boss" and his gang of crooks. Pretty sweet chase scenes in this one.
Who doesn't remember Sesame Street? Although, I believe in Canada it is now called "Sesame Park" due to the fact that they don't want kids to be encouraged to play in the streets. I'm not sure if that's actually why they changed the name of it, but it seemed reasonable enough. Anyways, the original Sesame Street was much cooler than some lame park anyways. Remember Mr. Hooper and Linda? And Bert and Ernie before they were gay? Or Big Bird and Oscar the grouch? So many excellent characters. I loved the aliens that would say "yep, yep, yep, yep...etc."
Ah, The Raccoons. I loved this cartoon. Although, I still don't know what that pink guy, Cedric, was supposed to be with his odd nose. An anteater?
Polka Dot Door
Before Polka Dot Shorts, there was Polka Dot Door. With story time mouse and the trunk full of stuffed animals, such as Marigold, Humpty, Dumpty, and Bear! Oh, and the odd time Minou, the French Canadian cat who would make an appearance whenever he felt like it. Typical French Canadian Cat*. Only showing up when it's convenient for him. Of course, there was also the Polkaroo. Odd that he would only show himself when one of the hosts was missing...I smell conspiracy!
*Disclaimer: I have nothing against French Canadians or cats. But put the two together, however, that's where I have a slight problem...
Ah, the blantant propoganda this tv show shoved down our throats as children! "Recycle! Reduce! Reuse! Be a sun tot! They're earth friendly and do only good! Don't be a smoggie - they're filthy and mean and bad!" What's weird is that this show isn't on these days instead. Now that everyone's going green, you'd think they'd be pushing this show on kids these days. Oh, and I do believe it had a good message - I just like making fun of it.
One of my favourite shows ever! I had a huge crush on Jeff the mannequin. He was dreamy! And I still remember the magic words that would allow him to become human - "Hocus Pocus Alamagocus!" Sweet. Can't forget Sam Krenshaw and his trusty computer TXL. Or Jodie, the pink jumpsuit wearing display creator. Or Muffy, the neurotic rhyming mouse!
Pinky and the Brain
I actually bought it on dvd when it came out. I loved it that much as a kid. So many hilarious quotes from this show.
A personal favourite:
"Pinky! Are you pondering what I'm pondering?"
"Well, I think so Brain, but if the plural of mouse is mice, then shouldn't the plural of spouse be spice?"
I am seriously considering naming my first born son Finnegan. Not even joking. I'm in the process of convincing Greg. Either way, old school Mr. Dressup (with Casey and Finnegan) was awesome. Before Truffles and Chester though. Then it just got silly.
Kids Can Rock and Roll
"K-I-D-E-O...We are KIDEO"
Ok, this show was hilarious. Not that it tried to be. It was almost a parady of KISS. And it really made you see KISS in a much more ridiculous way. Not that I was ever really into KISS (I really don't want to rock and roll all night; nor do I want to party ev-er-y day). But it just made me laugh anyways. Especially the Aerobic Rock, where they played a sweet air band to try to get kids to exercise. Thank God they have Guitar Hero now instead of this lame crap! Wait, Guitar Hero is just as lame! Who am I kidding? I love both equally. But seriously, Buddy Goodfellow, Ace Manners and P.J. Styles, could really rock. I kid(eo) you not, those were their names.
Harriet's Magic Hats
"Harriet's Magic Hats have a happy way of getting us off the ground! Harriet's Magic Hats have a happy way of flying us all around!"
TVOntario classic. It was a tv show about a trunk full of magic hats that would take you to a site to which the hat could be used. For example, if you put on a hard hat, you'd be magically wisked away to a construction site! Exciting! I hated that stupid parrot though.
The Elephant Show
"One elephant went out to play upon a spiderweb one day..."
I still love this show. I wish it was still on. Sharon, Lois and Bram really knew how to rock the party. Oh, and often special guest Eric Nagler was pretty awesome too.
So, this wasn't entirely a kid's show, but I watched (along with Baywatch) anyways. It was 80's television at it's finest!
"Na Na Na Na Na Hey Hey! Carry Me Away!"
I was so jealous that they got to go to highschool on a cruise ship. How cool would that be? Plus Jimmy was hilarious and Max was hot. And this is where the somehow famous Ryan Gosseling got his start!
"Do the Care Bear Count down...five, four, three, two, one!"
Beastly and Shrieky were Noheart's minions, and were constantly causing slightly annoying disturbances making people of the world unhappy! Who could stop this madness?! Only the CARE BEARS!!! Oh, and Champ Bear was a braggert, in my opinion.
"Let it shine shine shine! Come on and let your light shine!"
I highly doubt many people remember this one. I couldn't find another picture of it other than this one, unfortantely. It was actually a Christian show with puppets and kids on a ranch. I'm sure you see the appeal of it now. Some stellar acting too.
"C I T Y you can see why these guys, the neat guys, smart and streetwise"
Oh yeah, that's how the theme song started. Very classy. This was a Saved By The Bell-style "comedy." Awesome.
A cartoon based on the movie! I loved it. Ghostbusters did this as well. Both were definite favourites.
"Soaring high in the skies, he may be small but only in size! Astro Boy Astro Boy! He is brave and gentle and wise!"
I'm pretty sure the first episode had a weird guy shoving Astro Boy into a suitcase. Kind of creepy.
"This is an art attack! THIS is an art attack! THIS IS Art Attack!"
Neil Buchanan (who, by the way, is not dead, despite popular belief!) could do some pretty awesome art. I always loved his Big Art Attacks. He made it look so easy! You know, for the amount of episodes I watched of this show, I never once tried to make any of the crafts. I don't know if it was laziness or something else. Probably laziness.
"It's time for Animaniacs! And we're zany to the max! So just sit back and relax, you'll laugh 'til you collapse, we're Animaniacs!"
So many hilarious parts of this show. It was like a child with ADD had written and produced it. It was brilliant! Of course, this is where Pinky and the Brain got their start. And who could forget Chicken Boo (completely ridiculous). And the Pigeon Godfather. Perfection.
So obscure. Almost NO ONE remembers this show. But perhaps the picture of "Friend Record" will jog your memory. That's pretty much the only thing I remember of this show. A giant record hitting two wooden spoons together. I dare you to try to ask people if they remember this show based on that discription. You'll get quite the looks, I'll tell you that much. It took me forever to find the title of this show. I'm glad I can stop badgering people to remember it by asking about a giant record with legs and wooden spoons. I think I was about 2 seconds from a straight jacket...do they even use those anymore?
Sunday, March 22, 2009
Anyways, here's a second list of toys of the past. Some of these may be a little more obscure, but hopefully at least one person remembers them!
"Don't be dull, be dazzlered!"
This little contraption could make a boring piece of perfectly good clothing into an eye sore full of tacky rhinestones! I had one, but I'm not sure I ever did anything with it. I may have used it on a spare rag to see what it did, but none of my close were bedazzled.
This is an obscure one for sure. It looked like a cassette tape, but it folded out into a magnetc board game. I'm pretty sure it didn't play music, and I'm also pretty sure it would wreck your tape player if you tried to play it. Trust me.
My Little Pony and Fairy Tales
"My little pony, apocalypse pony..." Wait, wrong theme song. Anyways, these things are still around. I just got my niece one for her birthday. I remember having a white one with red and green hair. She (or he, they weren't really gendered specific as they had no genitals...probably a good idea that they didn't) had a maple leaf on her hind quarters. Or there were the ones that your rubbed them and a picture would appear. Pretty high tech stuff.
Cherry Merry Muffin
Fisher Price Little People
Lady Lovely Locks and the Pixietails
So, I'm going to stop here. I have so many more 80s and 90s toys to share, but I'll leave that for a "part deux." I'm pretty sure this one went on a little too long anyways.