Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Winter 2007

Predicting My Schedule Using RAMSS

If my schedule stays the same, I'll have class Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. If I swap my journalism elective for the freelance course, I'll have class Tuesdays and Fridays. Both seem impossible. Both are based on suspect information from RAMSS.

And I really didn't have to write "suspect information" to let you know that RAMSS is unreliable at its best.


Tuesday, November 28, 2006

June 7/07

First the Pictures, Now the Graduation Date

Ryerson has set Thursday June 7, 2007 as the J-skool's convocation date.

I'll mark it in my calendar as The End.


Shopping Spree

Christmas Shopping for the Canadian Press

I've become the unofficial shopper for CP video's project. Last week, I went to Henry's to buy a replacement head for a tripod; that cost $90. The week before that, I bought video editing software for $600.

Today, I went back to buy more editing software (this time, it came with hardware); it cost $700. On the way back down Queen Street East, I stopped into a different store and bought some tripods--some $900 worth of tripods.

I got into a cab with $1,600 worth of software/hardware/equipment, but it didn't seem to be worth that much.

I've never spent that much money at once, and unless I go on another CP-funded shopping spree, I don't think I'll spend that much money at once anytime soon.


Monday, November 27, 2006

The Guild

Don't Take This the Wrong Way; I Love the Union

It's hard to be happy when I stare at one of the various Canadian Media Guild bulletin boards around the building where I work. I'm a member of the Guild, who garnishes my wage in the name of the scam called "guild dues."

Most of my jobs have had unions I was stuck in: forced to pay a weekly or bi-weekly due despite not actually using any of the union's resources. At CP, it's much the same. Except I have one strong reason to hate the union. But that reason is unimportant, in the past, buried, gone; don't mention it, 'cause I really can't say.

That leaves me talk about the small reasons I hate the Guild. On the bulletin board, the Guild posted a propaganda letter about a recent survey of Guild members. The survey wanted to know what members wanted when the Guild goes back to bargaining.

So what do Guild members want more of? Guess.

You're wrong: Guild members don't want new Guild t-shirts (mine completed my "Jackass" Halloween costume last month).

Guild members want more money. Now that you've dropped back into your seat after that revelation, I can tell you that no fucking survey was needed to generate that answer. The Guild could have took a dumb, uneducated guess and still would have come up with the same result.

In the years I've been in unions, I've become convinced that the people who care most about their union, the people who are concerned with every breath and shit a union takes, are the people who know that without a union they'd have no guarantee of employment. If it was "Judgement Day," those people would be sent to unemployment hell.

But maybe I'm just a kid; maybe I don't understand how good it is and how much the union fought for me. Maybe I should apologize and add a retraction to the bottom of all of these shameful words. Maybe I should, 'cause you never know, someday, I just might feel like sexually harrassing someone. And then I'll need the union to save my ass.


Concert Post

Whoa, It's Been a While Since I Had One of These

Last night: Jet at The Guvernment.

This was a rescheduled show that was supposed to happen the week of the band's new release "Shine On." For some reason, I skipped getting tickets to that one, but picked some up for last night's show.

After I bought the tickets, but before I went the show, I found out Jet apparently wasn't a great band to see live. A friend had seen Jet back when their first album was in style, and she said to expect a bad set.

But she did say that with a little experience, maybe Jet would be good. Last night, with a little experience, Jet was damn good.

I hadn't listened to either of the band's albums in more than a month, so their music wasn't fresh in my mind. At the concert, I tried to remember if I had ever liked Jet's music as much as I did last night. And that's probably the best thing I can say about Jet's more than 90 minutes on stage: the band's performance made me like them more than ever before.


Sunday, November 26, 2006

Never Far

One Week To The End

I have one week left in my internship.

One week away from the normal.

One week away from back here.

One week away from one last semester.

My graduation photos came in the mail this week. I always thought that they would come later; near the end, in March or April. But things move without asking, and my photo is already hanging in my house.

I applied to three internships; I've been offered a full-time job more or less, just not in those words.

It's the end of something I guess.


Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The Internship

Three Weeks Late, It Finally Starts

After three weeks of not doing much of what I was supposed to be doing on my internship, I thought the thing was a bust. A bust.

Maybe doing the internship at Canadian Press was a horrible mistake - the worst mistake I made this year. (Actually, I've written here before about the worst mistake I made this year.)

But on the 13th of November, the start of week four of my internship, I finally did what I came (back? - I never left) to CP to do: shoot video.

The small details that I shot video at my first ever press conference (the Hockey Hall of Fame inductee newser), got in my first media scrum (meet Mr. Patrick Roy), and actually felt like I accomplished something (even if I'm still a bad camera man), proved to me that staying at CP was the right decision. Today was a small step with a good result.

Besides, how many interns get to say they covered the biggest press conference in Toronto the first day on assignment on their internship?

(Okay, it was only a press conference. Get over it.)


Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Now "Magazine"

Why So Negative

I've never understood why Now considers itself a magazine. A rag? Yes. Magazine? No.

But I don't want to take anything away from that publication; I've read some great articles they've reprinted from better sources.

And while I'm all about negativity, I'm perplexed how Now reviews music. When it seems all the critics like something, Now hates that something. This isn't a scientific sample, but it's something I've noticed.

Exhibit A

Bob Dylan's "Modern Times"

I haven't listened to this album, but reviewers at Metacritic gave an average rating of 88 per cent - "Universal Acclaim." But Now's review works out to 40 per cent.

Exhibit B

Avatar's "Comets on Fire"

I've never heard of this band or album, but it's average review is 80 per cent, except Now gives it a 40 (okay, I know Now didn't give it 40 per cent, but like I said above, that's what it works out to).

Exhibit C

My Chemical Romance's "Black Parade"

I've heard this one, and it's good. Maybe even great and worth the 80 per cent it received. Now, predictably, disliked it saying, "(My Chemical Romance) succeeded at making a good big-dumb-rock record, but you get the sense they didn't mean for it to be quite this dumb." Sure. That's worth 60 per cent.

But I get the feeling those reviews are worth about the same as Now's cost at the newsstand.