Not To Be Trusted With Knives











Just when y’all got comfortable reading me here in WordPress.com land, I’ve decided to pack up and move. To a new home of my very own at the aptly URL’d drbethsnow.com.

I’ve picked a pretty theme and then screwed around with a bit to make it even prettier.  Why don’t you head on over there and let me know what you think?



It’s my one year anniversary of moving from Blogger to WordPress.com.  So, now I’m moving to WordPress.org. It’s true what they say: WordPress.com is just a gateway platform to the harder stuff.

In fact, I’m all set up to make the shift.  I’ve got a domain (which I’ve actually had for a while), I have a server, and WordPress.org has been installed (thanks to Kalev, who rocks).  I’m only lacking one magical ingredient: time.  This semester is insanely, insanely busy.  In addition to my day job, I’m teaching two new courses: the UBC one and one at SFU1 and I’m playing on two hockey teams.  Oh yeah, and I’m supposed to be training for a half marathon. So I won’t be making the shift until I get a few minutes to breath2.

In the meantime, I need all you techies to answer this question: What are your favourite WordPress plugins?

Kalev has suggested this one, which, among other things, allows commenters to preview their comments before posting them.  What other ones should I get?  You know, for when I stop being insanely busy and get a chance to make the jump.

And speaking of being insanely busy, I’ve decided to prorogue my BC Premiers series until after the end of the semester.  Writing the BC Premier series postings, which I usually do on Sundays, takes up a fair bit of time since I know pretty much nothing about BC Premiers.  Unlike my usually postings where I just blather about whatever is spinning around in my brain, I actually have to read stuff.  And I know that I just don’t have time to do that until the semester is over.  So I’ve asked the Governor General of my blog3 for a prorogation of the BC Premier series and she has graciously agreed to allow it. Expect the series to start back up in late April, at which time I’ll present a budget.

1Which, mercifully, is online (so I don’t have to go up the mountain) and has a TA (who does tonnes o’ work and also rocks)
2Perhaps over reading break?
3As it turns out, I’m the GG of my own blog. What a lucky coincidence!



{January 12, 2009}   101 in 1001 for my 1000th post

So, for my 1000th blog posting I wanted to do something special. And I decided that the something special would be a “101 things to do in 1001 days” list.  The first time I saw one of these was on Dave’s blog and I may or may not have soon after written a parody version called “102 things to do in 1,000,001 days” on a satire blog that may or may not have been removed from the Internet for possible libel issues. Anyway.

The idea behind this list is to come up with 101 things you want to do – things you’ve always meant to do but haven’t gotten around to,  things you want to challenge yourself to accomplish and, let’s be honest, a few things that sound good but you are pretty sure you’ll do so that you can gain the satisfaction of checking at least a few things off your list.  As well, it’s important that the goals are clearly defined/measurable (or, as we say in the Research Methods world – you need an “operational definition” of each) so that you know whether or not you’ve done it.  Props for this idea go to triplux, who appears to be the creator of this idea (or, at least, is the first Google hit for “101 in 1001”).

So, after much thinking and pondering and reflecting and considering and deliberating and contemplating and ruminating and reading the thesaurus, I have come up with the following 101 items that I intend to do in the next 1001 days:

  1. go to New York City
  2. leave the continent
  3. live above ground
  4. run another half marathon1
  5. run the full marathon in Sacramento (i.e., the net downhill one!)
  6. assemble my last 7 years worth of photos into scrapbooks2
  7. give something a cool name (i.e., not just adding the letter “y” to the end of what the thing is a la “froggy” or “puppy”)
  8. get my blog onto WordPress.org
  9. participate in a political campaign
  10. attend Women’s Campaign School
  11. conduct some kind of  education research project
  12. conduct another systematic review for the Cochrane Collaoration
  13. publish a paper in a scholarly journal on the training program that I run
  14. write something creative (e.g., a story, a script or a poem)
  15. change a life
  16. write a book
  17. teach a course at a college
  18. ski at Whistler 3
  19. ski at Big White
  20. ski on Grouse Mountain
  21. learn to snowboard (or at least try it)
  22. go surfing & actually stay up on the board
  23. skate at GM Place
  24. coach a hockey team
  25. hike Black Task
  26. hike the West Coast Trail
  27. write a computer program
  28. start a business
  29. learn French (at least a little bit. Like more than just what’s on the cereal box)
  30. write a blog entry entitled Word to Your Moms, I Came to Drop Bombs4
  31. read something by Salman Rushdie5
  32. visit Macchu Picchu6
  33. for one week, go to bed at 9 and read non-work related books7
  34. read The Last Spike by Pierre Berton8
  35. take pole dancing lessons. Like, a whole set of them, not just the intro class.
  36. beat my current record of 10 points in a hockey season (which I achieved on the Blazing Blades team in both the Winter 2007/08 and the Spring 2008 seasons)
  37. teach the same course at UBC twice9
  38. participate in the “365 Day Challenge”. This involves taking a self-portrait every day for 365 days and posting it to the 365 Day Flickr group.
  39. make a list of 100 things that make me happy
  40. buy a Smart Car
  41. buy an iPhone
  42. skate on the Rideau Canal
  43. take Tod to a Vancouver Canucks game [Accomplished: 13 January 2009, Canucks vs. NJ Devils. Next time I should try to take him to a game when the Canucks win!]
  44. take Tod to a Vancouver Giants game
  45. go to a BC Lions game
  46. go to a Vancouver Canadians game
  47. see a Vancouver White Caps game
  48. start composting
  49. keep a plant alive for a whole month
  50. write in my journal every day for a month
  51. go kayaking
  52. camp at Joffre Lake
  53. visit Galiano Island
  54. visit Salt Spring Island
  55. visit Bowen Island
  56. save $500 in coins10
  57. deposit that $500 worth of coins into my 40th birthday savings account
  58. write 10 friends real letters, on paper, with a pen and snail mail them
  59. follow Canada’s Food Guide to Healthy Eating every day for 1 month11
  60. go to a Bikram yoga class
  61. go to a spa for a facial
  62. visit 5 new American states12
  63. visit Newfoundland
  64. visit Nova Scotia
  65. visit New Brunswick
  66. visit the Yukon
  67. visit Nunavit
  68. do a 24 hr blogathon
  69. do 15 minutes of yoga every morning for a month
  70. sort through my many boxes of papers (most of which contain papers from my thesis), recycling the papers I don’t need and filing the ones I do need
  71. find out my credit rating
  72. determine my net worth
  73. buy a bike
  74. bike to work every day for two months
  75. record a cooking show (at least 5 episodes)
  76. publish said cooking show online
  77. participate in five research projects (as a subject/participant, not as a researcher)
  78. sell counter top dishwasher on Craig’s List13
  79. see at least one Bard on the Beach performance14
  80. put up a Christmas tree and decorate it with chili peppers15
  81. live blog something
  82. go to bed every night for a week with all the dishes cleaned
  83. achieve inbox zero and maintain for one full week (where “maintain” = by the time I go to bed each night)
  84. up my blog readership to an average of 200 readers a day16
  85. break my current record of 460 blog views in a day17
  86. write a blog posting about the Car Co-op18
  87. go sky diving
  88. resurrect my teaching blog
  89. see the Dresdan Dolls in concert
  90. see Groove Coverage in concert
  91. see a show at Richard’s on Richards before it closes down
  92. devise some sort of proper back up system for my computer files
  93. get my ring from my great Auntie Bernice re-sized to actually fit my finger
  94. buy a pair of brown dress pants19
  95. bake at least one thing per month for 12 months in a row, without baking the same thing two months in a row20
  96. go zip cording
  97. make homemade vegetarian marshmallows
  98. go on a polar bear swim
  99. recycle my old Sony Vaio desktop and my old Palm Pilot that are now just taking up space in my apartment!
  100. scan all the photos from my pre-digital camera days
  101. publish a blog posting for each of the next 1001 days!

So, there you have it.  I expect I’ll be posting updates when I get stuff on the list accomplished and possibly some excuses about my abject failures.

End Date: Monday, October 10, 2011 (thank you dateandtime.com!)

Footnotes

1Ya, this one is totally cheating, since I’m already training for another half. But it’s hard to think of 101 things!

2Um, ya.  I have seven years worth of photos in boxes, waiting for scrapbooking.

3Can you believe that, having lived in Vancouver for more than eight years, I’ve not yet skied Whistler?

4This one is stolen from an homage to Dave’s 101 things in 1001 days list. He didn’t actually manage to do it, but I think I can. I think I can.

5Also stolen from Dave’s list. I’ve been wanting to read something by Rushdie, so here’s an extra push

6This is the last one I’m stealing from Dave’s list. Promise.  Also, Dan said I should go there.

7Stolen from Triplux.

8Which Sarah’s been telling me to read since forever. And which she just gave me for Christmas, so if I fail to accomplish this one, well, that would just be sad.

9I always seem to get a course for one term only.  I taught Nutritional Assessment last year as a sessional, but the department hired a new prof and he chose that as one of his courses to teach, so I don’t get to teach it this year. And then, this past term I taught another course as a sessional because the usual sessional needed a break from it for one term only, so I probably won’t get to teach it next year. Now I want some consistency!

10Just because it would be difficult.

11i.e., meet the recommended number of servings for each food group every day and consume no more than one unhealthy “other” food per week.

12i.e., ones that I haven’t been to before. Or ones where I’ve only been to their airport/airport hotel (I’m looking at you Texas, Oregon and Arizona), if I actually go to somewhere other than the airport/airport hotel.

13since it doesn’t fit in my kitchen. =(

14I can’t believe I’ve lived in Vancouver for 8+ years and not once have I been to see Bard on the Beach. I like Shakespeare (I even have a minor in Drama that included a whole course in “Acting Shakespeare”). And I like beaches!

15Inspired by the tree at the Mexican resort I stayed at this Christmas.

16My 2008 average was 93 readers per day.

17Which occurred on Friday, September 26, 2008 as a direct result of my list of the hottest players in the NHL

18Which I have partly written and can’t seem to get around to finishing.

19I’ve been trying to find a good pair of brown dress pants since forever! Hopefully I’ll find them in the next 1001 days.

20Because I really enjoy baking and I never seem to do it anymore.



{January 11, 2009}   999 for 32

Today is my birthday.  But you knew that.

IMG_4495 by you.

This is what a photo of a cake looks like when you take the photo upside down and then you flip it upside right. This cake was delicious.

Despite what Kalev was trying to get people to believe, I turned 32 today. Or 29 for the 4th time.  Or my double sweet 16.  I celebrated my day by playing a game of hockey1 and watching the two hour season premiere of 24.  Which was much better than the 24 movie, thank the FSM.  Also – Tod made me a delicious dinner.  And I ate cupcakes that Rachel gave me.  Mmmm, cupcakes.

Coincidentally2, this is my 999th blog posting.  That’s a lot of frickin’ blog postings.

1in which we got slaughtered. But that’s neither here nor there.
2Seriously, I didn’t arrange that on purpose. It just sort of happened that way.



{December 31, 2008}   2008 – My Year in Review

Wow, it’s the last day of 2008. How did that happen?  Seems like only yesterday that it was New Year’s 2008 and now New Year’s 2009 is upon us!

So, in a blog posting that fits perfectly into my “rampant narcissism” category, I give you my personal 2008 summary:

The Good

  • I moved my blog from Blogger to WordPress
  • I got to hear Gloria Steinem speak
  • Got laser eye surgery
  • I saw Madonna in concert
  • I saw Chris Rock live
  • I taught two courses at UBC (Nutritional Assessment & Topics in Food, Nutrition & Health)
  • I got hired to teach another UBC course (Research Methods) and my first SFU course (Human Anatomy) for the upcoming term
  • Tod got the greatest cat EVER1.

The Bad

The Ugly

Travels

Accomplishments

Books Read3

  • Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace
  • Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell
  • The Raw Shark Texts by Steven Hall
  • The Pleasure’s All Mine by Joan Kelly
  • What to Eat by Marion Nestle
  • The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins
  • The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman
  • Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling
  • The Structure of Scientific Revolutions by Thomas Kuhn (just started)
  • Full Frontal Feminism by Jessica Valenti
  • Why Men Earn More: The Startling Truth Behind The Pay Gap-And What Women Can Do About It by Warren Farrell

Textbooks

  • Principles of Nutrition Assessment by Rosalind Gibson
  • Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches by John W. Cresswell
  • Best Practices for Teaching Statistics and Research Methods in the Behavioral Sciences, edited by Dana S. Dunn, Randolph A. Smith, Bernard C. Beins
  • Philosophy And The Sciences of Exercise, Health And Sport: Critical Perspectives On Research Methods, edited by Mike McNamee
  • Brain-based Teaching For All Subjects: Patterns To Promote Learning by Madlon T. Laster. (only a bit, because it turned out to be about elementary school teaching, whereas I was expecting it to be about university teaching)
  • Conducting & Reading Research in Health & Human Performance by Baumgartner & Hensley (only partway through)

Misc

And what year in review blog posting would be complete without some nerd stats:

Nerd Stats 2008:

  • Blog postings: 423
  • Tweets: 2,2274
  • Visits to my blog in 2008: 32,4104
  • Average number of blog visits per day: 934
  • Most popular blog posting: Hockey Hotties (1062 views)
  • Busiest day on my blog: Friday, September 26, 2008 (460 views, thanks to the Hockey Hotties posting)
  • My first guest posting on a blog as a correspondent for Miss604 at BlogHer

1OK, I realize that *I* didn’t get the cat and this is supposed to be *my* personal summary. But he’s the best freaking cat ever and he’s sitting on my lap as I write this, so it counts.
2A “letter of intent” (LOI) is an application to be allowed to submit an application. Anyone can submit an LOI, but only the people whose LOIs get accepted are allowed to submit the full application.
3I’m sure I’ve read more than this and am just forgetting some of them. This list is based on ones (a) I can actually remember without prompting, (b) appeared on my blog and so I saw them when I went through my blog to write this year in review, and (c) I still have out of the library, so I saw them when I checked what books I have out of the library.
4At the time of writing this blog posting.



I was about to write a blog posting entitled “Can’t Blog. Marking Papers.” But that title seemed eerily familiar to me, so I Googled through my blog and discovered that I’ve already used that same title1.  I’m so original.

Anyway.  I’m pretty beat after a long day of a nutrition symposium + lunch with friends I haven’t seen in ages + Christmas shopping + dinner with Kalev, but I’m trying to get some more papers marked before I go to bed because my poor students have been waiting forever for me to mark their papers.  Because I’ve been spending every waking hour working on a ridiculously large grant application that was due yesterday.  I mean, remember when I sent out this report?  That pile is not even as big as one copy of the grant application I just submitted yesterday.  And I had to submit the original plus FIVE copies.  I was going to take a picture of this behemoth report, but we2 were scrambling to get the final package assembled in time for the FedEx guy3 to pick up, so I didn’t have a chance to run back up to my office to grab my camera. I do have my own copy of the submission, so I’ll snap a pic of that and then you can imagine it x5.  Suffice it to say that it filled up nearly two full boxes – the kind of boxes that you get photocopier paper in (you know, with like 10 packages of paper per box).  So, yeah, I killed a small forest and I hope it results in me getting the grant that we were applying for, so I can still have a job.

And speaking of jobs, I have another one and it requires that I go mark some more papers now!

1Or 3/4 of that title, anyway.
2 We = the four people it took to assemble the damn thing!
3Who we had to ask to give us 10 more minutes to finalize our package.



{November 11, 2008}   Babies Galore!

It seems like everyone I know is having a baby.  My cousin, Andy, and his wife, Cristine, just had their second a few weeks ago.  My cousin, Lori, and her husband, Eugene, are expecting their second any day now (theirs was due Nov 8).  My good friend (and resident historian), Sarah, and her hubby, Dave, are expecting their first in January.  Then her friend Deepa, and her husband, David, are due in February. And then my friend Clayton, and his gf, Jodelene, are having one in March.  (Interestingly, Sarah & Dave refer to their wee one as “humpy,” while Clayton & Jodelene’s is known as “bumpy.”  No relation.)

And my blog friend (my bliend?) Stacia is having a baby.  Like right at this very moment, as I type this, she is having a baby!!  How freaking exciting is that??  Stacia & Wes – best wishes for a safe and quick delivery. Can’t wait to see photos of your little Navy Bean!

Updates on 15 Nov 2008:

#1 My cousin, Lori and her husband, Eugene, had actually had their baby when I original posted the message.  Little Beatrice Dale Anne, a baby sister for Imogen, was born at 8:30 p.m. on Nov 10.  Everyone is doing well.  I’ve gotten pics via email, but I’m sure they will put some up on their picture blog soon and then I can link to those.

#2 Little Navy Bean was born on Nov. 11, 2008 at 9:43am.  Check out her pics – she’s adorable!



{November 5, 2008}   Gender Analyzer FAIL

Apparently, I write like a man:

Dave brought this to my attention yesterday.  He thinks that it’s all the “bawdy talk going on” that makes GenderAnalyzer think I’m a dude. I think may have to do with all the talk about hockey.  Although I’m not sure how to reconcile all the talk about the hotness of male hockey players.  Perhaps they think it’s written by a gay man?

Before I got around to actually posting this, I noticed that Gillian had just posted her discovery that she also writes like a man!  I tried a few others, and have to say that this site isn’t very good at predicting the gender of the writer.  It correctly figured out that both Dave and Darren are boys, but it thinks that Tod writes like a girl.  But my favourite one was that GenderAnalyzer thinks that Miss604 is written by a man.  I guess the *Miss* in Miss604 wasn’t a tip off.



{November 3, 2008}   Thank goodness for Akismet!

The other day when I logged in to WordPress, I noticed that I had exactly 3333 total comments1 on my blog:

That’s a nice number: 3333.

But then I realized that 550 were spam. Boo spam.

And then, on top of that, Akismet has saved me from a further 6741 spam comments!  That’s 2.6 spam comments for every legit comment.  On the Akismet website it says that “86% of all comments are spam,” so I guess it’s good that I have below average spam levels at mere 72%.

Now, this whole thing has prompted me to actually look in the Akismet spam folder – I’ve never looked in it before. It’s pretty much what you’d expect – a lot of links, followed by a list of dirty words and phrases. Although one in particular caught my eye – it had the title “Anal,” which was followed by a link that I shall not reproduce here, and then a list of phrases, starting with:

korea sex net
free anal sex web site
wedding photography essex

Wedding photography essex? Really?
1It was a few days ago when I took this screen shot. When I just now logged in to write this post, I had exactly 3400 total comments.



{September 22, 2008}   Titles With No Posts

I’m usually pretty terrible at naming things.  But every once in a while a name for something just pops into my head, without the something to go along with it.  Here are some blog posting titles that have landed in my brain, but without a blog posting to go with them:

  • Dr. Bloglove – Or Why You Should Stop Worrying and Love My Blog
  • You’re So Vain, You Probably Think This Blog is About You
  • Shin Splints and Split Infinitives
  • Proactively Multi-tasking Outside the Box
  • It’s my Blog and I’ll Prevaricate if I Want To

I may someday come up with blog postings to go with some of these but, for now, I’ll use this posting as a brain dump for posting-less titles.



{September 13, 2008}   What’s a Blog?

So I was shopping on Broadway today and happened to go into this shoe store. As I am wont to do. And I was perusing the Hush Puppies, one of the clerks said to me, “What makes you ‘bloggable’?” For I was wearing this shirt1.  I laughed.  And then the one said, “What’s a blog?”  and his co-worker said, “You don’t know what a blog is????” and the first guy said, “It’s some kind of website thing, right?” and his co-worker was all, “Yeah. And like some people write lame personal journals and then other people blog about actual stuff that they are like interested in” and then then the first guy was like “‘Blog’ is verb?” and then the second guy was all, “oh yeah, it’s a noun, it’s a verb, it’s everything… <pause, then asks me> What do you blog about?”  Which, you know, is really hard to answer when the words “lame personal journals” has just come out of his mouth.  And so I went with my standard reply of, “I blog about everything except my work.” And then the first guy was like “Are WE going to be on your blog?” and then I was all like, “You are now.”

Clerks in the shoe store on Broadway.  Guy on the left is the one who didn’t know what a blog was. Guy on the right was the one who laughed at guy on the left for not knowing what a blog is.

1Actually, I was wearing that shirt in brown. Because I have two bloggable T-shirts – one from Northern Voice 2007 (purple) and one from NV08 (brown). I just don’t seem to have a photo of the brown one handy and I’m too lazy busy to take one now.



{September 6, 2008}   100

100 days ago I decided to go on one of my crazy kicks where I try to blog at least once every day1. Previous attempts faltered at 88, 58 and a very, very pathetic 25 days, but this time I’ve somehow been able to keep at it and here I am, blogging my 100th day in a row.

Now, some people have asked me, “Why do you want to blog every single day?” or “Are you insane?” or “What’s a blog?” But the thing is: I like blogging. There are so many interesting (and hilarious and infuriating) things I encounter every day, I just *have* to share them. And what’s a girl to do when there’s no one around to hear her various witty remarks?2

In the last 100 days, I’ve blogged about everything from America (see: Bank of) to Zombies (see: Gay). I’ve been to a blogging conference and been featured as a geek girl blogger on Spyjournal. I’ve taught y’all about 10 Canadian Prime Ministers and started my new series on BC Premiers. Wow, scrolling through my postings to write this paragraph, I’ve just discovered that I blogged about Socrates TWICE3! Hell, I live blogged my laser eye surgery! But I think my favourite posting in these last 100 days was the handwritten one.

Here’s to another 100 days of blogging!

1Technically, I made the decision 98 days ago, but since I’d blogged on each of the two days before, I’ve been blogging for 100 days straight.
225 points to the first person who correctly identifies where that quotation is from.
3I’m so frickin’ cool.

Image Credits:

  • Hawaii license plate posted on Flickr by Poagao.
  • Blog billboard which, apparently, is a housing company of some sort, posted on Flickr by Ryan Ozawa.

Go Creative Commons licenses, go Creative Commons licenses go!



{July 26, 2008}   Shout Out to the Blogathoners

I’m in between hockey playoff games – we won our game this morning against the last place team1 by a score of 13-12, but this evening we play the second place team, so we are going to have to work our butts off to have a chance at this one – so I will make today’s blog entry brief.  But fear not, as there is tonnes of stuff to read out in the blogosphere – today is Blogathon 2008!  Be sure to check out Rebecca’s posting which lists all the people crazy intrepid enough to post a a blog entry every half hour for 24 hours straight.  And everyone is blogging for charity so if you can afford to, donate to some of the worthy causes for which they are raising money.

And if you are all like, “Oh noes! But I wanted to read something written by Dr. Beth!”, you can check out my guest posting over on Hummingbird604.  And then you can buy me a MacBook Pro.

Now if you’ll ‘scuse me, I have to go put my hair in braids for hockey game #2 (of our 3 games within 24 hrs!)

1We finished in third place, with six teams in the division.
2And I scored a beautiful goal from my office.



{July 17, 2008}   Heading to the airport!

Gone to BlogHer 08



{July 16, 2008}   Pitch My Blog

As you know, I‘m off to BlogHer tomorrow! Well, the introductory brochure for Blogher suggests that I come prepared with a pitch for my blog1 and, since I’m the Queen of Procrastination, I’m just getting to thinking about this now.

Picture this: someone at BlogHer will ask me, “What’s your blog about?” and I will say… um… I will say… um… Ya, so this is where you guys come in – what the hell am I supposed to say? I’m always stumped when I’m asked this question and usually answer something like this: “Well, it’s a just a personal blog2. I kinda write about whatever comes off the top of my head. I write sometimes about hockey. And weird things that I do. And funny stuff I find on the Internets. And people/places/things that piss me off. So, um, ya.”

See! I need your help! If you were to try to explain to someone what my blog is about, in two sentences or less, what would you say?

1And it specifically says that “I just have a personal blog” is not an acceptable answer.
2See footnote 1.



et cetera