A Canadian Remembering 9/11 And Other Shenanigans.

I remember a decade ago from today, I was in the sixth grade sitting on the swing set with my best friend before the school bell rang.

This is when I first found out about the disaster of 9/11.

I mean sure, I’m Canadian, so a lot of Americans don’t understand why a lot of us are sombre about the events of that day. But really Canada and the states are so similar and tight knit, it doesn’t really matter we different countries, and our economies are so interwoven we directly affect each other. Not just that though, Canada plays a huge role in the war against terrorism, especially by taking over a lot of the duties of the United States Army in Afghanistan. I mean I even know a number of great Canadian people that have died serving the war against terrorism. These are people that I went to camp with, did some of my military training with and befriended over the last decade. So of course the events of that day affect us just as much as many Americans.

Pardon the language I’m about to use, but a decade ago from today, when I was merely in sixth grade, is when I realized that the world is fucked. I mean I don’t really like thinking into it very much, I know a lot about politics, government and the worlds affairs; its all a scary aspect that shouldn’t be disregarded. But in a way, its kinda sad that it takes events like 9/11, the assassination of JFK, declaration of war against Germany and the bombing of Pearl Harbor are what it takes to make me remember exactly what I was doing that day.

Even though its a decade since that horrible disaster, I’m going to turn it over to a bit happier of a note. I don’t like being morbid all the time, I like making people smile and being happy myself nonstop.

News!

I shaved off my beard last night. I felt kinda weird; I had it for a while and it grew on me a lot, now I think I look a little odd. Even my sister and a couple of my co-workers told me that I look funny without my beard. I’m sure it’ll be back soon, I just need a better grooming kit first, it was starting to get a little bit of a hassle and not look so clean.

After shaving though, I began to wonder if I should get my haircut too. It’s been about six months since my last one, which is the wait time I usually take before cutting it. Generally when I cut it, I get it pretty short. I always tell the snazzy haircutting artist lady to use a number 5 razor on me. Last time I did that, the lady was pretty shocked, she said, “Are you sure you want to go THAT short?!”.

I guess if I do, it’ll be pretty spontaneous, or in response to other people suggesting its time to cut my hair. Or maybe I should go to other extremes and dye it pink or something! But then again, my boss at work would probably kill me…

Oh! One more thing! I was approved for student funding, so guess whose going to return to California for New Years?! That’s right, TYSIE! I’m pretty excited, and I’ll probably get my airline ticket soon before it starts getting too expensive. I’ll stay with the same people that I always stay with, they are pretty awesome and fun. Plus the only people I know there, I kinda wish I knew a few more folks in the states though, that way I have more places to crash and hang when I’m travelling through; because I do that quite a lot.

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A Mall, A Girl, And A Big Bad Dude.

Lately I’ve been having some pretty intense dreams revolving around me being against everyone else in an apocalypse-like situation. It’s not a recurring dream or anything like that, just different dreams focused on that subject matter. I mainly remember two of them, but I’m just going to talk about the one which I remember most.

It started fairly abstract, I never really suspected the dream to end up the way it was. But it began with me wandering around some sort of desert-like area, but it was more cold than hot. I guess it could be considered a wasteland more than anything. Mostly though, it wasn’t colourful at all; no vegetation, no people, no animals. Just myself wandering alone, in search for a place to call home for a night and praying to find some sort of food.

Somewhere along the way, I noticed a person in the distance. They seemed very far, so I thought it may have been a mirage or just my mind messing with the reality of the situation. But as I closed the distance between us, I began to realize that the person was real. Not only that, but there was some sort of large building in the horizon as well.

At first encounter, the man didn’t really seem to trust me, his body gestures suggested that he found me as a threat. But after reassuring him I wouldn’t hurt him or do anything bad, he reluctantly guided me to the building.

The building ended up being a large mall that now stood as a refuge and shelter for survivors of the apocalypse that occurred. The entire town inside the mall was controlled by one guy, I never caught his name in the dream, nor did I meet him until later. But the first thing that I observed, was that the people of this small colony within the mall looked up to him and bowed down to him. In fact, if they didn’t, they would often be punished by his protective crew. I guess the reason that they followed him rituously was that he provided them with a home and protection. Although, as a result, I would consider him corrupt by the power he held.

When I got inside, people immediately noticed that I was a new face. Some of them looked worried about this, but the hospitable ones took me to a bench of sorts where I was able to get some sleep.

I awoke from the feeling of being watched. So when I sat up, I automatically glanced around to see who or what disturbed my peace. I noticed it was a bunch of goons hanging out at a once been coffee booth nearby. I could immediately tell that they wanted to start trouble with me, the unfamiliar person. I could tell by their body gestures and the looks they were giving me. Next thing I knew, they were approaching me and each pulling out an array of weapons, from guns to knives. Observing that, I quickly stood up and weaved into a crowd of people around the food court area of this mall. They were still all after me, and caught up, beginning to throw punches, swing their weapons and cock their guns.

For some reason, I had these amazingly smooth and quick reflexes (that I obviously don’t have in real life), and fought away most of the goons without getting hurt and much like in action movies. Until one starting shooting. He missed me, but hit several people in the crowd, making everyone scream and begin to flee.

Suddenly, the one goon that was doing the shooting was shot himself. It was a fatal hit to the head. After a scan of where it came from, I found the man that did the damage. He was huge, at least 7 feet tall and biceps as large as my head. He fired his shot from an entire floor above, with his gun still smoking from the muzzle. I knew instantly, that was the power hungry individual that basically ran the place. Not to mention, he was surrounded by quite the number of personal guards.

Next thing I knew, this man was right in front of me, telling me that although I’m a new face, I better catch on to the rules and flow of the place if I wanted to stay there alive. But most importantly, not to defy his rule.

With that in mind, I went about exploring the colonized mall, familiarizing myself with it since it would be my home for at least a bit. While exploring, I bump into this girl (I know, all of my dreams have some sort of random girl for whatever reason), and when I look at her, we meet each others gazes. She was a beautiful girl, but like all my dreams, I can never remember what she looks like, only what I thought about her when we met.

All I thought was that she was a beautiful girl.

After meeting each others eyes, we instantly connected with that electric feeling you get when you meet the eyes of someone amazing. So she joined me and showed me around the mall, telling me about the people and revealing all the secrets she knew about the place. Even saying that the people were actually afraid of the guy that was in charge, but were too grateful for a home to complain.

We got to know each other fairly well and talked nonstop; she even gave me a place to spend the night. It was at that point that I told her I wouldn’t be able to stay for long under their leaders rule, and would have to move on like I always have. She understood, but I could tell that inside she was quite sad. As was I.

The next morning though, I must have gotten too friendly with the wrong girl. When I awoke there were some of the leaders security guards waiting for me to stir. With that, I knew I’d have to make my move then and now. So I set out with a swift yet elegant attack on the security men, and began to run towards the mall exit.

It was looking as though I would make it too, I could see the doors straight ahead and nothing was blocking the way out into the wasteland again. Then all of a sudden there were several security guards and the mall colony leader taking up all the space in front of the doors. With my exit blocked, the only choice I had was to stop and observe my surroundings for another escape.

There was no other escape though.

As I was continuing my frantic search, the leader pulled out that beautiful girl I had met and had her all tied up. She was crying and obviously distraught of the entire situation. I don’t remember what the leader dude man said, but I know it was hostile, especially since he took off his jacket to deal with me himself; apparently with his bare hands too since he handed off his weapons and such to his security team. The one observation I made, was that guy was triple my size.

I prepared myself for him as he slowly made his gradual approach, cracking his knuckles and chuckling at me for being a lot smaller. I knew my only advantage was that I would probably be able to move a lot faster than he would.

As soon as he was close enough, he already began to throw the punches, sending the first for the head. I was able to dodge that one pretty quickly, but it didn’t deter him at all. He started throwing more punches, each of which I was able to dodge as well, but some were pretty close since I could feel the air disturbance from his swings.

I began to back up the immobile escalators, knowing that being at a higher ground would serve as an advantage to me for a little and give me a chance to think. I didn’t think of much though as I was quickly running out of escalator to go up, so once at the top, I hopped over the escalator railing onto a ledge that apparently held some plants at one point.

He followed in same manner, except moreso stepping over the railing with his massive height.

As I backed towards the edge of the ledge I knew this was the time I needed to do something, so when he was once again close enough to throw a punch, I ducked and tucked away behind him quickly. Then I immediately gave him a kick to the side as hard as I could.

Thanks to his missed swing, he lost his balance a little; mixed with my hard kick, the leader plummeted off of the ledge and onto the ground. I’m not sure if the fall killed him, but he was definitely injured. Luckily, his guards and all the people were too stunned to pay attention to me anymore, and went immediately to help their ferocious leader. Plus some were a bit afraid of me, the dangerous new guy. But as I was exiting, I made sure to untie that beautiful girl.

Who Is That Beautiful Mystery Girl?

Then I left.

Just like that.

I didn’t even look back even though I really wanted to, just to see that beautiful girl one more time.

A couple of kilometres down the wasteland, I began to hear the sound of someone running towards me. I figured it was the guards coming with extra ammo to get me back for what I did to their boss. Either that or the leader guy was alright and coming after me.

When I turned around though, I was surprised.

Probably the best surprise I ever had in that apocalyptic world, and probably the first smile I had since too.

It was that beautiful girl, coming to join me and be my partner on whatever adventure I was heading to next.

 

“I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.” – Revelations 21:6, King James Version

 

Tyson Trepidations.

Nerding Out With TED

I do admit confidently, that sometimes I can nerd out quite a bit. I don’t really care, if it interests me then hey, it’s okay.

Once in a while though, I’ll go on Wikipedia to look something up or read into whatever is on my mind and I end up Wiki-surfing. I go from one subject to another and another just looking random things up. For example, the other day I went on Wikipedia to look into that new show called Terra Nova, then I ended up reading about Steven Spielberg, then onto Stephen King, Jack Layton, Fallout 3 and lastly, Rio.

Maybe I have an addiction to learning random facts. I could be like that random fact guy who sits in a corner, then whenever someone walks by, I’ll shuffle out of hiding yelling “RANDOM FACT!” and give them one. Even if their running away.

But really, that’s not even what this post is about, and I shouldn’t be creeping out the people that have to put up with reading this neither. It’s more about how I can nerd out a tonne with TED.

Who’s TED anyways? I don’t even know a TED.

Well, okay, TED isn’t a person, its a nonprofit organization that specializes in “ideas which are worth spreading”. It’s basically a conference full of guest speakers that have some innovative ideas for the world. I gotta say, some are pretty inspirational and creative. It has all kinds of people giving the talks, from scientists, to actors, to magicians, soldiers, writers, dancers, investors, etc. Any person, even just regular people that have a big idea.

So if you feel like nerding out, seeing something inspirational or really cool, give it a try! Below are a couple of my favorite conferences.

This TED conference video features Marco Tempest, he’s a magician that uses iPods as his magical props. While he performs, he talks about truth and lies, art and emotion. It’s really neat and worth a watch.

Here’s another one, this ones a bit longer at 18 minutes. This inspiring lady is Charity Tillemann-Dick. She had a double lung transplant and after being told by her doctor that she will never sing again, she proved them all wrong. Watch her amazing speech and musical performance if your up to it.

 

 

 

“In order to do good, you have to do something.” – Emily Pilloton

Tyson Trepidations.

The World And Exploring It

Even though this is only my second blog post, I’ve already mentioned this twice, but it’s worth mentioning for a third time. I find that building connections all over the world is very important with experiencing the different views of the world and understanding culture.

I know most people that travel (and travel smartly), will tell you that travelling is quite addicting. Once you start seeing and experiencing things you never laid your eyes on or felt before, its something you want to continue to do. Even though my travels have barely taken me out of North America, I can understand this concept and I feel that having the ability to travel is an opportunity that shouldn’t be wasted. In fact, a significant number of people from Canada and the United States have never left their province or state, let alone their country.

That all seems extremely robotic and systematic to me.

When I look to travel, I don’t actually look into the travel packages too much. A lot of them cover a lot of ground and show a person many many things in their destination. The problem I have with those is that they really rush you through places a lot of the time and its just non-stop. Especially the ones that cover many destinations or countries in something as short as a two week period. It basically goes that you get there, look around, take pictures and move on to the next attraction like a herd of cattle. For that, is why I think making worldwide connections is very important.

As a university student studying in Canada, I’m very lucky to have a vast diversity of cultures to interact with while going to school. It means I can make many friends and connections from all over the world. It’s these relationships that really help me to understand different cultures and create a foundation to travel to and with.

There’s also the internet for those that aren’t shy and confident with their ability to judge character and trust others. It’s such an easy way to connect with the earth, using the resources on the world wide web. It can be as simple as places like these (blogs), to start making the worldly connections and there are also places specialized for that, such as couch surfing. With that said though, you still have to be careful on the internet, even with fairly trustworthy methods like the official couch surfing site.

I guess the best way to end is to share the places I wish most to explore and start building connections into. So here they are:

Malaysia

Singapore

Peru

Santorini (Thira)

Czech Republic

 

“Life does not ask what we want. It presents us with options” – Thomas Sowell