Friday, April 29, 2011

Elections and Weddings

It's election time...again. I'm working the polls and I'm getting paid so it works fine for me, but it's costing Canada a fortune.

Our set up is quite different from the States even though we're both a democracy. To be honest, I think the states has a better system. There are three changes I would like to see to our democratic process, things that the States does.

1. Have an election every four years. The way it is now they have an election anytime they want to. It becomes a game, especially when there's a minority government (minority means that they have less seats than the combination of other governments). You can see the other parties gang up on the elected party. You can see the elected party doing things to force a vote in hopes of getting more seats. If they all knew that there was only a vote once every four years then they could spend more time actually working instead of playing the game "when shall we have another election."

2. Limit an individual from being the prime minister to two terms. Remember Trudeau? He was in power for like a hundred years. It was like having a king that wouldn't die. He's responsible for the metric system, French being on everything (even though English isn't), and Margaret.

3. Allow us to actually vote for our prime minister. Put his/her name on the ballot and let us put an x there. Right now the prime minister is determined by how many seats his/her party wins. I remember one year I wanted one guy from a party to represent me, but I didn't want his party leader to be prime minister. You can have a great representative be in the wrong party. So make it two separate votes. One for your local rep and one for the prime minister.

4. Yes I know I said three but I just thought of a fourth. Allow our representatives to represent us. When King Mulrooney was in power he kicked out people who didn't agree with him. There should be room for dissention and our reps should be able to vote according to how they think the people they represent want them to vote, not according to what the prime minister tells them.

So there we go.

By the way, did anyone watch the wedding? Yes, I did stay up. It's history in the making. The dress was beautiful and she was glowing. I remember the other wedding - yes I am that old. The dress was overwhelming and Diana didn't look very happy. As it turns out she wanted to run and she should have but then we wouldn't have had this wedding. Let's hope that William and Katherine's (could you get any more regal sounding names?) marriage is a long and happy one. Will seems like a much better man than his father and might actually take those vows he made today seriously - unlike his lying, cheating dad(can you tell that all my sympathy went to Di?), and Kate seems far better prepared than Diana.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Cross Stitch, Quilting, Knitting, Sewing, Craft, UFO Rotation = Procrastination

I am supposed to be studying for my Art History exam. Instead I'm blogging about something I did last week when I was supposed to be writing essays and my take home exams. Because that's what I do, anything except what I'm supposed to.

See my title. Designed to appeal to the masses. Some of you may ask "what the heck is that?" So for the uninformed let me explain.

Cross Stitch - a needleart that entails putting little x's on fabric to make a picture. You wouldn't think something so basic, so simple, would be so fascinating, but it's like painting with thread.

UFO - this has nothing to do with little green men, ET, being beamed up by Scottie, or a call for medication. It means Unfinished Object.

Rotation - a system for finishing UFO's.

So now we have that clear I have a confession to make. I have 15 of those cross stitch UFO's. What's more, some of them are older than some of my children, and my youngest is 11.

So after doing a google search I've designed a UFO that I think might work. And for those of you with your own stash of UFO's you can give this a try. No, this is not going to solve the world's problems, this is so I don't have to study.

1. Find all your UFO's and works in progress. This might mean looking under the bed, in closets, in your wheat barrels, in abandoned purses and under the kitchen sink.

2. Look them all over. Do you want to finish that cross stitch picture of an all black puppy for great aunt Mabel even though Great Aunt Mabel is gone now and your eyes go buggy with all those shades of black and you never were a dog person? Is that jacket with peacocks all over it and humongous shoulder pads still something you're going to want to wear when you do finish it? How many crocheted washcloths do you still need? Weed out the stuff you don't like anymore. Give it away, throw it away or take it apart and reuse the materials. It's okay. It's no longer worth your time. You are not a failure. Let it go. We all have projects we were initially excited about but grew to dread.

3. Make sure all your projects are in bags with the materials.

4. Make a list of all your projects. Try to organize your list according to what you want (or need) to finish first. If you have an extra big project you might want to put it near the bottom of your list. You'll see why in a minute. Try to vary your list so you don't have the same type of thing all in a row.

5. Here's where the rotation part comes in. The number one item on your list is your focus piece. Work 10 hours on your number one and then work 10 hours on your number 2 piece. Then go back and work another 10 hours on your number one piece, then work 10 hours on your number three piece. Do you see where I'm going on this? Work down your list in 10 hour increments alternating with your focus piece.

6. Eventually you will get the number 1 piece finished (because you are working on it more than on anything else). You might even get another piece on your list finished. That's great. When number one piece is finished then your number two piece is your focus piece and you continue through your rotation alternating with your new focus piece. If you happen to finish one of your other pieces you can then go back to your focus piece for 10 hours and then continue with your rotation.

7. Now here comes the fun part. Once you go through your rotation - you can start something new. What! I know, you're trying to get things finished, not start new things, but lets face it, the reason we have UFO's is because we're starters not finishers and if we can't look forward to starting something new we just might suddenly go crazy and start a whole whack of new things as a form of rebellion. Besides this is supposed to be enjoyable. I bet you have a huge stack of things you've been wanting to start. So, you get to start a new one - but only at the end of your rotation.

8. When you've rotated through everything and added a new project (if you wish), then start over again from the top.

You can see why I suggested that big projects be put at the end of your list. You need to have some finishes and you won't if you get bogged down at the beginning with a big piece. Eventually it will be your focus piece but you'll already have put in a lot of hours on it.

So that's what I did with precious time last week. And now I'm blogging about it when I could blog about all the answers for world peace, saving the planet, and answering the great unanswerable question "Why do people like Charlie Sheen get to make millions doing fun stuff and I (who has never yet served time in prison, an addiction facility, spent time with prostitute) don't?"