Not In The Past

Looking forward from 30

Archive for the month “July, 2012”

This blog is getting away from me.  I’m at another point where what I’m saying with this blog is less and less what I want to actually communicate.  I blame the benefits of semi-anonymity.


To move or not to move

I’m still looking for work; I haven’t heard much from my applications aside from a handful of form-letter rejections.  I’m wondering if part of my lack of job hunt success is that I have a Miramichi address, a Moncton cell number, but I’m looking in Halifax.

I wonder if I’ll have more luck if I move to Halifax before landing a job.  The main issue with that right now though is I really don’t have the money for a place right now.  My parents offered to lend me a little for the very short term, but they really don’t have much money.  I have a few friends down there (I’ve stayed with them on prior trips to the city), but I’m concerned about overstaying my welcome or goofing off too much.  My EI is going to run out and I’m concerned I still won’t have a job.  Doesn’t help that I have some debt either.  Some people say that taking the leap is the key because otherwise we’d be always waiting for the right time to do it, but I wonder if I even have that option anymore.   Not being 100% frugal and responsible during this time, even if it was to provide a temporary lift to my spirits or attend a friend’s wedding, only increases my guilt as there is a separate set of rules for the haves and have-nots.  That’s why I was questioning whether I really needed my camera: I felt like I had to justify owning such an expensive piece of equipment, even if I did get it before I left Riverview.

The responsible thing is to stay in Miramichi or go to a closer city, possibly take yet another call centre job, and save money for the big move.  The trouble with this scenario is that I know myself too well: I’d get complacent in the job, and try to distract myself from boredom or misery by spending the money I was supposed to save.  I feel time’s running out; I’m 30 and I still don’t feel like I’m getting a running start on life.  If I stay in Miramichi, take another call centre job or end up at Wal-Mart, I know its only going to make me depressed.  I won’t even be able to write.  I wonder if I need to push myself even further away from here, maybe go West.  No money -> lack of options, and most of the remaining ones are dead ends.

Maybe it’s just my pride preventing me from mooching off friends, or maybe it’s that I don’t want to impose or strain the relationship.

I’m at a crossroads.

This is the game that moves as you play

I had a dream last night that I was in Halifax; it wasn’t really a pre-meditated, planned trip, more of a “Hey, I’m in Halifax” thing.  I remember waiting for a bus along Pleasant Street near where my friends’ house is.  I wonder if that’s supposed to be a sign that I’m going to be back in the area sometime soon.  It’s been over three months since my last trip.  I’d like my next time there to be related to job interviews though.

How many applications need to go out before you hear back?  I’ve retooled my resume since last spring to show more of my skills, but I still have to wonder if I’m doing enough specializing for each application.  I’m looking to leverage six years worth of call centre experience, a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology, a little bit of radio experience and various summer jobs into something that I could get some new experience in.

I’m going to Sappyfest in a few weeks.  Bought my tickets a while back and took advantage of a VIA Rail sale for this (probably the last time I’ll get to before the service gets slashed out here).  It would be good to see people roughly my age (although I suspect the baby hipsters will be out in full bloom this time); one thing I notice every time I go out somewhere in Miramichi is how a lot of the people in restaurants or Tim Hortons are 60 and older…

In the heat

Oh-kay…I’m going to do a second blog post tonight; I might as well, since I feel like it.

I’m trying to get my “official page” launched.  I’m not going to post a link here since I don’t want people to find this directly by searching for my name (they can probably find the link a few degrees away so that’s a moot concern), but I’m trying to figure out what kind of face I want to present to the world; this will mainly be about me the freelance writer, but I also want to finally make a decent photographic portfolio.  I just want to have an official face to the world for professional networking purposes.   I have to get back into the game of writing and photography; both have been on the back burner ever since I’ve been committing to the hunt for a day job, but I feel like I haven’t been doing enough of either for my own good.  How can I expect to improve if I’m not actually doing it?

Took a swim at Bathurst’s Youghall Beach last week.  I’m not a very strong swimmer but I like just to be able to get off the ground, float and maneuver myself in the water.  I feel like one of the main benefits of living here is the proximity to the ocean; it feels like a waste when the weather and work schedules don’t cooperate and I don’t even make it out to the beach as much as I want.  I feel cheated when I don’t get a few swims in the ocean during the summer.  There’s also a really nice (free!) beach at Bay Du Vin too.  I think I might want to learn how to swim better sometime; I used to be spooked by deep water when I was a kid, but right now I just want to get to a point where my swim form isn’t as awkward.

I’ve also been thinking about the amount of weight I need to lose.  I’m “Homer Simpson weight”; granted, I suppose this increases my appeal for some (especially within the Bear community) but I really think I need to get in shape and stop eating so much crap.  I really need to wean myself off the Pepsi; I’m so addicted to it I get caffeine withdrawal headaches when I try to detox.  It would probably make me feel better in a few different ways if I were to get rid of my belly.


I’ve been applying for jobs all week; I’ve done about 15-20 in the past few days, and usually end up bookmarking jobs that sound remotely close to what I could do whether I’m actually qualified or interested in them or not.  I’m of two minds when it comes to customer service jobs: they’re what I have most experience in, but at the same time I feel so disposable when I’m in those jobs.  I feel like I’m standing still, or worse, falling behind while everyone else.  I would be more OK with starting at the bottom if I were younger, but I’m 30 now.  I don’t want something too fancy or prestigious, just something where I can make a living and feel like I can move up.  It would feel like another in a string of failures if I ended up at another call centre, at least on the lowest rung.

The thing I hate is feeling so passive, and at the mercy at someone else’s whims.  That’s essentially how I felt when I worked in call centres, and its how I feel whenever I’m at home or unemployed.  It doesn’t help that my worst habits seem to be indulged or encouraged whenever I’m living at home.  I was hoping to be out of Miramichi after only 6 months.  I’m coming up on two years this September.  I’m looking for work in Halifax; it’s harder to find work unless you actually live in the city you’re looking in.  Only trouble is I can’t afford to move unless I have a job lined up.

I’m so God damn frustrated and feel more powerless than I really am.  I should just hop somewhere on a whim instead of letting each week disappear to habit and the endless loops of existence, or whining about it.

Found on the web

Winnipeg Love Hate: I lived in Manitoba for nine years when I was growing up (Selkirk for five, then Winnipeg for four).  I still get a little homesick for the West every now and then, and whenever I see pictures of Winnipeg it reminds me of what an amazing city it is.   I don’t know if I’d ever move back there, but I regret not being old or self-aware enough to have fully appreciated the city when I was in it, so I wouldn’t mind a visit back one of these days.

Full House Reviewed: I used to enjoy Full House until I got to the age where I could realize what an awful show it really was.  This site is absolutely merciless in its takedowns of the logic leaps, unlikable characters and horrible messages that the show sends.  The reviewer is almost finished season 5, the year that Michelle seemed to obnoxiously retort “DUH!” in every episode.  (That’s not cute, that’s being an asshole).  The show only gets worse from there…

Remnants of Wikipedia articles

Just out of curiosity, I decided to check whether any remnants of a long-deleted Wikipedia biography for an in-joke from my university days still existed online.   The following is the text that article:

James Edward Ceb (born SkowheganMaineUSA March 6th, 1964, died MonctonNew BrunswickCanada, October 23rd, 1999), more widely known as simply Jimmy Ceb or Jim E. Ceb, was a controversial religious figure and a cunning linguist, who operated throughout Canada’s Atlantic provinces in the late nineties. Once believed by many to be possessed of healing powers, Ceb was subsequently outed as a troubled fraud shortly before his death in a skydiving accident in 1999. Many people, including David Gormang of the Halifax Chronicle-Herald, assumed Ceb’s death had been pre-planned. Already facing media scrutiny, Ceb announced that he would jump onto a field just outside Moncton and then give one of his typical fire-and-brimstone orations. His parachute failed to open and Gormang speculates Ceb did not even try to release it. At that point, he had ceased to draw crowds, and so only Gormang and a few student reporters witnessed the accident.

Ceb attended public schools across northern Maine, dropping out at sixteen. He worked in an electrical instruments plant in Aroostook, Maine until 1994, when he apparently began having visions. Acquaintances and colleagues at the plant have generally reported that Ceb’s visions were drug-induced, mostly by way of magic mushrooms.

In 1995, Ceb left Maine for New Brunswick, where his father had been born. He had great immediate success in the southwest part of the province, succeeding in his project to amalgamate Pentecostal churches across the region. Building what became in effect New Brunswick’s first ‘super-church,’ he alledgedly amassed a small fortune in embezzled donations. Ceb also fell under the suspicious eye of both the provincial and federal governments for his alleged promise of tax credits for those who donated. Ceb, meanwhile, shrugged off any investigation and kept preaching. By 1997, up to ten thousand people visited his church every Sunday. Ceb would often give five or six services on those days. He also commissioned a camp around the church that at one point housed up to one thousand pilgrims. Most of these people ended up working for Ceb in some capacity, mostly making phone calls or sending out pamphlets. By this point, Gormang had already referred to him as “the next Henry Alline.” This proclamation would not come to full fruition. Ceb’s claims that he could heal through the laying-on of hands were perhaps unsurprisingly a result of actors-for-hire. Furthermore, Ceb was indicted by the New Brunswick government in 1998 and shut down his ministry shortly thereafter. He is rumoured to have returned to frequent drug-use. Ceb is buried in Sussex, New Brunswick.

I also remember that someone made a number of edits to articles that identified a friend of mine as a harp player for Coldplay, the oboist for The Verve, a participant in the O.J. Simpson Ford Bronco chase, and a chocolatier that invented the Mr. Big chocolate bar.  I’m surprised there wasn’t an attempt to create an article for a baseball player from a non-MLBPA licenced video game with the surname of a roller coaster designer…

Politics redux

Ayn Rand quotes are the right wing’s Che Guevara posters.  I disagree with the right on a lot of issues, yet for all their posturing about how they live in the “real world”, it comes off just as idealistic as anything I’ve read about ending poverty.  I’m no longer horrified, but I still get angry when I see how this idealism is matched with condescension toward the less fortunate (my biggest trigger), or bundled up with thinly-veiled racism, sexism or homophobia.

This American election coming up this fall reminds me so much of a shriller, parties-reversed version of 2004.  In the White House, you have a President that the other side seems to viscerally loathe.  They question the legitimacy of his presidency, and his first term is marked by one particularly polarizing decision.  For all the outrage and hand-wringing on their part, though, their challenger in the election is particularly uninspiring: a Massachusetts politician considered the “safe” choice in a group of more colorful candidates, with a reputation for flip-flopping and not much more to their platform than opposition to the polarizing decision the President made.  The main difference is there’s a lot more money involved in the race (thank you, Supreme Court) and the noise level is just to the point where everything is so obnoxious that I can’t wait until it’s all over.

I hope the Republican Party comes to its senses.  It’s gone so far to the right that even respected conservative judges are calling them “goofy”.

The wanderlust begins again

I’m craving another trip to Halifax, but I’m waiting until I hear back about potential employment to go: don’t really want to spend the money to get down and back unless I have a pragmatic reason.  I know I’ve touched on that point in my last post though.  My urge to go back down must be because it’s been a year since my vacation there, or just displaced envy of my sisters’ New York trip.  Pride’s coming up in Halifax, but if I had to make a choice between that and Sappyfest in early August, I’d go with Sappy.  Hope I’m at least in Hali before the VIA Rail service gets cut down to three days a week.

I finally finished one of my projects: I had been reviewing the 1980-81 season on my other blog, and finished the last review this week.  I still have a season-in-review retrospective left to do, but I’m glad to finally get that behind me.  The whole lot of my SNL reviews is listed here (as well as a list of episodes I’m looking for copies of: original broadcasts, particularly).  It’s basically a way for me to just keep watching old episodes of SNL over and over again, but I found the whole process rather draining toward the end.  After giving myself a break from the whole SNL review game for a little bit, I’m going to do my next reviews in a roundtable discussion format with a few other people.

I’m sorry I’m so distant these days.  Time keeps disappearing and I don’t feel like I have much to show for it.  I wonder if this indicates I have some kind of problem.  I would love to go out for a beer with you, somewhere where the music’s not too loud and we can actually hear each other.

On hold

My sisters are going to New York this weekend.  I’m a little disappointed that it’s already their third trip and I still haven’t gone.  I have to be practical, though: while I wouldn’t mind another trip outside of Miramichi one of these days, I have to conserve money and really hit the job hunt aggressively.  I don’t even feel right about another trip to Halifax unless I have something related to employment lined up there.

I didn’t get the position in Moncton that I had interviewed for: it did seem like a good company, but I think not getting this job only made my mind up that I didn’t really want to be in Moncton anyway.  Time to focus on getting into Halifax as soon as possible.  For all my grand overtures about wanting to move to the city that I’ve been making for the past year, I really haven’t been doing enough to make it happen.  Now that I don’t really have much on the horizon I can focus on just getting out of Miramichi.  I’ve been feeling like I’ve put my whole life on hold for the last few months anyway.

This weekend I’m writing some long overdue letters to people and getting caught up on blogs I’ve neglected.

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