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I never thought the day would come, yet here it is. In all seriousness, Internet, I am going to confess to you that I like exercising.

How weird is that?

I do not like exercising when I am in the midst of it. It is only once I have made it past the halfway point of my alloted exercise time that I am even able to begin to entertain the idea of appreciating what I am doing. Until that halfway point, I am a bitter, angry person. I spend that first 35 minutes, during which I am doing cardio, cursing to myself.

I like to think that the rage and resentment I feel towards exercising vacates my body along side the copious amounts of sweat I produce during my workout. Actually, “copious” does not even begin to paint a proper picture of how much sweat while exercising.

Prior to beginning a routine of regular exercise, I did not know that my forearms could sweat. That’s not true. I knew that my forearms could sweat; I just did not realize that my forearms could create enough sweat that the sweat would bead and fall to the floor.

By the time I have finished exercising each evening, it looks as though I had decided to take a shower while wearing workout attire. Thinking about it now, showering in my workout attire might actually be a good idea as I could use the time to wash both myself and my workout ensemble simultaneously.

One of the side effects of regular exercise has been that I have lost a little over 30 pounds. Seriously, I have no idea where it has gone. One day, it was there, on my hips, and the next day it had magically disappeared. While I am generally pleased by this development, I did not find it amusing when my pants nearly fell down while I was out grocery shopping. I had a flashback to a similar event that had occurred several years prior that ended in me being escorted, by staff, out of a bookstore.

It is probably time to invest in a belt.


Stuff Megan Does Not Like (Part Four)

My cat.

Actually, I generally like my cat, but there was a time that this was not the case. It was several years ago, and it was largely the result of the rift between us that was caused almost entirely by his drinking problem.


My cat is actually American. However, his nationality has nothing to do with the disdain I once felt for him. Rather, I was bothered by the air of superiority that he projected when in the presence of other cats and the way he insisted that a “real” football field was only 53 and 1/2 feet wide.

My cat is also technically a mutant. Aside from the power to annoy, he lacks any super abilities. However, he does have an unusually high quantity of toes. To be exact, my cat has twenty-seven toes. This is commonly referred to as polydactylism. I specifically sought him out because of this trait.

I’d become interested in polydactyl cats after visiting the home of Ernest Hemingway while I was in Key West, Florida. Polydactyl cats are supposed to bring good luck, but I think someone forgot to tell this to my cat.

My cat has many quirky traits that cause a special love/hate relationship to exist between us. For instance, my cat licks plastic. He also enjoys chewing on electrical cords. Have you ever had to tell a university professor that you weren’t going to be able to submit a paper on time because your cat chewed through your laptop’s power cord and your battery died? I have.

Although I lack actual proof, I think my cat may be evil.

Pie Night

I first celebrated Pie Night in 2004.

It was glorious.

“That is lovely,” you may be saying to yourself, “but what is Pie Night?”

The answer to that question is fairly simple, as the name of the event, Pie Night, is kind of self-explanatory. Pie Night is a night on which many pies are purchased and then eaten. It was born out of indecisiveness and a craving for pie. Unable to choose between apple, pumpkin, lemon, cherry or any of the other flavours that Sobey’s had displayed in their baked goods section, I just bought one of each.

When I approached the register to make my purchase, the checkout boy looked at me inquisitively. “Having a party?” he asked.

“No,” I replied, “these pies are just for me.” But this was only true in part. The pies were largely for me, but I fully intended to return to my apartment, wake up my roommates (it was 3 a.m.) and force them to eat pie with me. Eating eight pies by yourself at 3 a.m. is sad and may indicate that you are suffering from emotional issues. Eating eight pies with your college roommates at 3 a.m., however, is making the kind of memories that will last a lifetime.

The downfall of Pie Night is that there is always pie left over the next day. While living in residence at university, this problem was easily solved by leaving leftover pie in the kitchens of the unfortunate souls on our floor who happened to leave their apartments unlocked at night.

I will tell you a secret, Interweb: I have a dream of entering a pie eating contest. I do not think that I would be able to eat more than one pie, but I feel like a pie eating contest is the only time when it is socially acceptable for me to stick my face into a pie, and this appeals to me.


Nothing in the world causes me to experience a rush of euphoria quite the way that sparkles do. Actually, that is not true. I can probably make a list of things that cause me to experience a rush of euphoria similar to the way sparkles do: puppies, winning money, high-fiving and finding great things on sale. But there is just something about sparkles that makes me so happy inside.

Maybe referring to them as sparkles is not being specific enough; I enjoy glitter. I will be even more specific and state that I am not referring to “Glitter,” the Mariah Carey movie. I do not enjoy that. Although I will admit that I have not actually seen the movie “Glitter,” and I have no intention of doing so in the near future. I am not going to say that I will never watch the movie “Glitter” because I may one day find myself on a plane where “Glitter” is being shown as the in-flight entertainment. At such a time, it is more than possible that I will choose to view the film.

But I digress. Glitter.

Wikipedia defines glitter as “very small pieces of paper, glass or plastic painted in metallic, neon and iridescent colours to reflect light in a sparkling spectrum.” It also states that glitter is often used in craft projects because of the brilliant effects which can be achieved relatively easily by using it.

I have used glitter in several craft projects that I have undertaken. My favourite “craft project” is making encouraging signs for people using poster board, glue and glitter.

I made my first glitter sign for my younger brother to encourage him to do well as he played in a high school football game.

His team lost that game, just as they lost many more games that season, and I feel it can be directly linked to my brother’s bad attitude about sparkly signs bearing his name.

After adamantly refusing to hold the sign I made him so that I could take a photo, he finally agreed to stand in front of the camera while my mother held the sign up beside him. I will tell you, Internet, that, if someone made a sparkly sign for me, I would hold that sign proudly for any and all photos people wanted to take of me. In fact, this past June I made myself a sparkly sign bearing my name and bribed my brother into holding it for me while I ran my first five kilometre race. After the race, I walked all around downtown Burlington with my sign and refused to put it down. The sign is currently sitting on a shelf in my garage. Every so often, I go to visit it in my garage and simply bask in its glittery glory.

Analyzing pop song lyrics as if they were real poems

Have you ever heard a song on the radio, perhaps even sung along to it once or twice, when a questionable lyric caused you to furrow your brow in confusion and stop to say aloud, “What is this song even about?”

I have. And because I am confident that the vast majority of the world is almost exactly like I, I know that you, Internet, have too.

In my free time, which is actually most of my time, I like to entertain myself by putting my degree in English Studies to use by analyzing the lyrics found in today’s popular music.

Often, it would seem, the lyricists of today pay little or no attention to elements of poetry such as meter. And why should they? After all, they are not really writing poetry, right? Did the individual who penned Miley Cyrus’s “Party in the U.S.A.” sit down and say to him or herself, “This is it. This is my masterpiece. I have utilized just the right amount of poetic devices to provoke thought. My diction is perfect. The intellectuals of the world will understand that this is actually a critique of the American democratic system. However, for those who are less scholastically inclined, my words will ring out with another message entirely. People everywhere will be brought together by my work and will rejoice. They will party in the U.S.A.!”

My favourite song, to date, to examine has been “London Bridge,” notably sung by Fergie of Black Eyed Peas notoriety. Why does this song intrigue me so? Because I in no way comprehend the analogy the writers of the song were making. What is being referenced with the words “london bridge.”

If you are at all familiar with history, you will recall that London Bridge has actually fallen down many times and has even been the site of multiple tragedies. In 1091, the original manifestation of the bridge was destroyed by a tornado. And then it caught fire in 1136 and again in 1212. It was during the 1212 fire that approximately 3,000 people died tragically after fires broke out on either side of the bridge and trapped them in the middle.

After taking these historical events into consideration, I can only presume that the lyricists behind Fergie’s gem wished to convey that, every time the subject of the poem (the “you” who, according to Fergie, often comes around) is within the speaker’s vicinity, the speaker is overcome with the desire to end many innocent lives and destroy property of the British government.

Whatever. Who am I to judge?


Three years ago, just after I made the joyful move back into my parents’ house (please read the former with just a hint of sarcasm), I let it be known that I had an overwhelming urge to purchase a hamster.

“No,” my mother stated firmly. And so I ended up going out and spending several thousand dollars on a saltwater aquarium instead. Now that several years have elapsed, and I have some perspective, I can tell you, Internet, that, without a doubt, getting a hamster would have been a much better choice.

Do you remember the show “Tales of the Riverbank?” Of course you do. But just in case you are having “one of those days,” I will remind you that it was a children’s television programme that ran intermittently from the early ’60s all the way until 1998. You will recall that it starred Hammy the Hamster and featured other notable characters such as GP the Guinea Pig, Roderick the Water Rat, Turtle, and Berti and Herbi.

So what made this show so remarkable? I will tell you what: those rodents captained boats! Sailboats, ferryboats, steamboats and motorboats were only a few of the water crafts these clever little mammals handled. But their genius was not limited to chauffeuring aquatic vehicles. I watched one episode where Hammy the Hamster and Roderick the Water Rat used power tools to assemble and erect a clock tower. Even I have difficulties when using tools such as power saws, so you can imagine my amazement (and jealousy) when I witnessed a rat use one with ease.

“How?” I thought to myself. “Rats do not even have thumbs.” And yet, the lack of an opposable digit did nothing to hinder this animal’s carpentry ability. In fact, as shown in the clip below, the rat was even able to use a drill and a hammer without the aid of a pollex.

When not building clock towers, episodes of the series indicated that Hammy enjoyed spending his time fishing. Prior to watching this show, I had never realized that rodents were even able to fish let alone use it as a means of unwinding. But the exposure to Hammy’s past times got me thinking: where did this hamster even get the money to buy a boat? After all, Hammy owned at least two boats and one car. Fine, I am willing to admit that it is possible he merely leased them, but even so, how did he earn the money required to make his monthly payments? And what kind of deals do insurance companies offer hamsters?

I feel that the show missed out on a great opportunity to explore the working world of rodents and the real obstacles they face.


There are people in this world who lament over their natal anniversary. For some reason, the arrival of this day causes them grief. I find myself unable to relate to these individuals. Perhaps it is because I am still relatively young. I do not mind getting older. As some say, getting older certainly beats the alternative. I assume this alternative of which they speak is being cryogenically frozen or placed into suspended animation. As both of these alternative options have yet to be entirely mastered by the scientific advancements available to us today, I agree that aging certainly does beat the alternative.

I feel like my birthday is the perfect opportunity to trick strangers into being nice to me. For instance, I firmly believe that people are given more leeway on the day of their births. Feel like going just a little bit too fast while driving on the highway? Do it on your birthday. What kind of police officer would give a speeding ticket to someone on their birthday? A mean police officer. A mean police officer who is actually doing exactly what he or she is supposed to do. But seriously, do it and then tell me what happens.

I have yet to understand why I receive gifts on my birthday. Did I do anything spectacular on this day? To be honest, probably. I am a pretty spectacular person and do spectacular things most every day. The odds are in my favour. However, I suspect that it is really my mother who deserves to be celebrated on this day. After all, she is the one who birthed me. I had already over stayed my nine month welcome and, to add insult to injury, I weighed over nine pounds at birth.

My mother often enjoys spending a brief period of time on my birthday reminiscing about my birth. She tells me things, such as how I was actually born on the way to the delivery room because labour was so quick. “You may have been overdue,” she has said, continues to say and will no doubt say again, “but once you decided you were ready to make your entrance you did not waste any time.” This declaration is usually followed up with a joke about how nothing has really changed, but I disagree. A lot has changed. For instance, I now weigh substantially more than nine pounds. I am also much taller than I was at birth. Additionally, I would like to think that my communication skills have improved dramatically.

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