Thursday, October 28, 2010

The People Have Spoken

I haven't lived in Toronto for a couple of years now but I still consider it one of my homes especially as I still have many good friends and family there.

Recently there was a mayoral election and some guy named "Rob Ford" won. I heard him talk on CBC radio the other day and he sounded fairly ignorant. Of course I was influenced by the fact that EVERY SINGLE ONE of the people I know in Toronto voted against him. Never before have I seen such a universal loathing and banding together over said loathing of a politician. (at least at this local of a level).

I wondered how such a universally disliked person could be elected. Then a friend of mine posted a link to an article that showed a map of how each ward voted.

The suburbanites seem to love Ford. The urbanites not so much. All of my friends are the latter.

It's interesting to see such a clear divide. But I guess no different than the blue and red states, but at a micro level.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Do I have a drinking problem?

I went to see my doctor tonight (her name is "Princess" - how awesome is that?) for a long overdue routine check-up. Part of a check-up is the Q&A so she can understand my habits as they relate to my health:
- Do you smoke ? (no)
- Do you do have allergies ? (yes. Morphine and sulfa)
- Do you drink ? (WELL....)

So I shared that I drink usually only on weekends (and Wed/Thurs last week) and I might have a few if I go out with my friends.

She was pretty laid back about it and just said "well Sarah, for your optimal health you should really just limit it to one..." I interrupted her (just picture me nodding my head in a resigned sort of way) and said "...per hour. Yes I know. I usually do."

And she laughed and said "No. Per night. One per night."

One per night? Was she kidding me? What kind of Princess Doctor was she?!?!

So. Well then. Perhaps some of us need to start re-evaluating her drinking habits.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Dogs Days of Fall

Once again I'm reminded of how lucky I am to be living in New York City- and all of the opportunities I'm exposed to. Yes it can be expensive, as my bank account can attest to, but it's also stuff I wouldn't get to do anywhere else and as such I take advantage...

A few weeks ago I went to a pre-season NFL game between the Giants and the New England Patriots. We had VIP passes so we were able to be on field for the warm up.

We were close.
Tom Brady needs to cut his hair.

A few weeks ago I went to an EPIC concert at Yankee Stadium. I can say without hyperbole that it was probably the best concert I'll ever see in my life. Or anyone, ever, will ever see. In addition to the headliners Jay-Z and Eminem, they brought on 5- Cent, Dr. Dre, Kanye West, Drake (Degrassi!), some other rappers I don't know,Chris Martin, and... Beyonce. It was awesome. Though I did leave early to beat the rush on the subway.

I managed to see two Yankee games this fall- including one where they beat the Red Sox. I saw two Broadway shows (thanks Big Al!) including my favourite: Rock of Ages.

Some friends and I also went Apple picking. Ironic that I seem to do the more outdoorsy and nature-y things the further I move away from nature.

Finally I managed to get out to the US Open. It was about 75C and we melted through a tournie where the #4 men's player, Andy Murray, won his game as well as a close match between French player Gael Monfils and some loser. It was some great tennis.

And a great Fall.

Now we head into Winter where I will begin to hibernate. I've already put on the requisite 10lbs to keep me warm... damn Peanut M&Ms...

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

The Business of Volunteering

Every couple of years I try to do a volunteer stint in another country so that I can a) ease my conscious about how incredibly selfish and lazy I am the other 51 weeks of the year and
b) see a new part of the world while doing it! (and hence being selfish in my efforts to be not selfish.. but I am selfish... ah- nevermind!)

Anyhow- doing it again this year and I'm going to CHINA with Habitat for Humanity. I put that in all caps because those that know me know that it's not somewhere I'd normally go. I've never expressed an interest in going to China before. But people change. Times change. And the Nepal trip was full.

It's my first year not going home for Christmas, which is sad. But it's going to be an amazing experience, which is exciting.

The reason I'm posting about it is because there is an opportunity for you, my family and friends, to support me in this. Not just emotionally but with $$. Honestly though I'm thinking of those that I normally exchange Christmas prezzies with- maybe this is something you could do instead? I would really appreciate it because even though I'm working I still have to pay for the privilege.

It's easy to donate and any amount helps.

And then you TOO can feel warm fuzzies about yourself, for doing something selfless this season. This season of giving.

Have I laid it on thick enough yet?

Regardless of contributing or not, expect to be subjected to the pictures and stories in the new year !!

Sunday, October 03, 2010

The Business of Medicine

I had my first experience with the American medical system this week and like everything else in this country it's ruled by the almighty dollar. I had suspicions of what I was in for, with the doctor fulfilling my expectations by offering up the most expensive test possible for a swollen knee. I can tell you what's wrong: I'm old. And I ran too hard last week and so my knee protested by swelling up. Take a needle to it- drain it- and let's get on with our day. But no. He suggested I get an MRI- which according to my sister-in-law is the gold standard of x-rays. Yes he'll get an indepth look at my knee issues, but to the tune of $750. But since my insurance covers it- why not?!

Well there is the little matter of unnecessary exposure to intense radiation. UPDATE: There is apparently no ionized radiation with MRIs and they are quite safe. YAY. And spending on my HSA should a real emergency come up (quick: knock on wood).

So we'll see how it goes. I'm talking to the doctor again on Tuesday and I'll try to withstand his aggressive sales pitch (believe me- he was smoother than a car salesman).

Friday, October 01, 2010

I am my Mother part 1

Yesterday a friend said to me "Sarah you are just like your Mother"- which I took to mean a compliment as I think my Mom is great. However she was referring to my tendency to pretend like everything is fine even when it's not. And in this case it was about my health.
My Mom is notorious about insisting she's "great" even though she's coughing like she has the black lung. The same as I have been protesting "I"m fine" when I'm clearly hobbling on my now 'expanded to two times its normal size' knee.
So I'm going to go and get it examined. And in America that means finding a doctor that accepts my health care and is in my system so I don't have to pay $400 for a consultation.
*Deep breath* It's not fine. I need to be looked at. But I'm sure it WILL be fine. (are you listening Mom?!)