What I’m Up To Today

I’m feeling a bit light-headed today, for some reason. It’s annoying today especially because there’s quite a lot going on. Also, I somehow forgot to mention Fizz candy in my post yesterday! How could I forget delicious Fizz?!

Working on getting teams together to #BowlForKidsSake in support of Big Brothers Big Sisters Toronto. Super fun, but the date is fast approaching and we were just trying to come up with team names last night, so technically we aren’t even registered yet, let alone starting fundraising. Hopefully it all works out, though! I’ll be hitting everyone up in our fundraising efforts soon, I’m sure!

A few new things – this morning I sent in an application to be a volunteer at the Toronto Wildlife Centre! As a Nursery Assistant! How amazing would that be?! I hope I get to do it. I’d sent an application late in the season last year and never heard anything back, so hopefully this year it’s early enough that I can get through the training and such before baby squirrel season is in full swing. Because I really want to feed and care for and clean up after baby squirrels. Baby animals, really. Or any animals. I really want to be around animals more. So fingers crossed that I can get that opportunity to happen!

Additionally, I did a little research, and ended up submitting an application to make an attempt at setting a new Guinness World Record! Not breaking an existing one. Setting one of my own. I won’t likely hear back from them for awhile, and so won’t go into details unless I am approved to make the attempt, but I will say for now that it involves hearts. ‘Cause how appropriate for me would THAT be?

I love the Guinness World Record thing, apparently. It’s all so…I don’t know. I get all excited about it, and was so obsessed with having a successful first attempt at breaking a record, that now I want to do it more. I’m addicted! I love how it feels – every step from first thinking of an idea, and pouring over the website, the application process, planning the attempt, doing the attempt, and then collecting and submitting the evidence. I love looking for materials to use, especially from the GWR official store. For the first attempt (and only one I’ve made so far, but there are more in the works), I even got some fancy birght yellow vests with the GWR logo on them, and balloons! So much stuff!

This one will be much smaller in scope overall, but the feelings are much the same. I’m excited and constantly thinking about how I hope to set it all up and what I hope to achieve. I’m considering adding a charity, but my brain came up with, like, 5 different ones I’d like to include, so either I choose just one or figure out how to start a fund from which each of them would get an equal portion. Or something. Or not add a charity. It all really depends on whether or not I am given the go-ahead by Guinness, and because it’s a new record, rather than one that’s been set before, it can take up to 12 weeks to hear back.

Though it is very similar to other existing records, so maybe that’ll make it faster. And they might alter the title from what I suggested to something in the same vein but more suited to their ideals and guidelines. I don’t think the record attempt will be declined outright, but there is always a chance, so I’m trying not to go too far into planning and excitement mode until I hear back from them officially. I’ve only made one other suggestion for a record before (so far) and it was declined because it wasn’t globally recognizeable enough. Hearts are known around the world, though, so maybe I have a shot at this one! Then I could be GWR’s Queen of Hearts, at least temporarily!

What was I just saying about trying not to get too excited? I’m failing.

So, change of subject. I’m trying to get more clips from my first big GWR attempt cut and posted as often as possible. Still a long way to go until all of them are up, and admittedly I am less enthused about the ones I’m doing now because the audio quality is so bad. But I’m still managing to work on it pretty much every day. I won’t be cutting any new segments tonight because I will be getting home later than usual, but for the most part, I’m back to making slow but steady progress. I’m happy to be back at it, too. As much as part of me wants to move on to new endeavours, that weekend-long record-breaking event was pretty spectacular, and I never quite get enough of revisiting it – even almost a year and a half later. I mean, check out the complete photo collection here! Some of those alone are bound to bring back sweet memories and/or a smile or two! Sometimes I still just stand and stare at the signed poster and – to a lesser extent – the official record-holder’s certificate hanging on my living room wall. It’s all kind of surreal (especially now that the record is no longer mine…currently), but easily one of the greatest weekends of my life, and I love to revisit it all in my mind once in awhile. As much of it as I can remember, anyway!

So going back over all the footage and cutting segments together is actually really fun, but also really time-consuming on my ancient home computer. I’m so thankful it’s still churning stuff out, though, because I really can’t afford a new one right now!

I’m also about to get the next round of voting going for the Reelie Awards! That’s the Mind Reels award show wherein fans and viewers get to vote for their favourite Canadian films and television shows. It’s the People’s Choice of Canadian content. But mostly it’s just a fun little way to draw attention to and celebrate the talent and creativity we have going on in this here country.

I feel like there is so much more ongoing projects and things on my plate right now – getting a short story ready for a contest, updating my resume, crafting and writing and coming up with yet more ideas of things I want to do. There’s not enough time in the day, I tell you. Not while working full time! Haha

I know it’s about finding a good work-life balance, and I’ve mentioned before that I really am trying. I’m just also so tired all the time.

I need a good work-life-sleep balance, I guess!

Fun Dip, Grab Bags, and the Value of a Shiny Quarter

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Guys – there’s Valentine’s Day Fun Dip!

I had no idea until I saw some at the pharmacy yesterday, and it brought back a flood of memories for me. Not so much the Valentine part, but the Fun Dip part, for sure.

I mean, I of course flashed back to those days in elementary school when we’d all bring those wee cardboard Valentine’s to our classmates, and leave them on one another’s desks. Those themed ones with groan-worthy jokes and puns on them that we’d get at the store and then have to buy a second box because there weren’t enough for everyone in the class, and then we’d have some left over that we’d intend to use the following year, but would inevitably lose in the interim. And of course at least one kid would’t be at school that day, so their desk piled up with Valentines that wouldn’t be received until whenever they were next present in class. And the pretty and/or popular kids would always receive the most somehow, and every year you tried to figure out a way to give a special Valentine to one kid in particular, without having it look like theirs was different from the others you handed out, even though they all came from the same box, and you hoped somehow they would magically notice they got a special one but that no one else would so that you wouldn’t have to be embarrassed.

Anyway…Fun Dip!

I used to love that stuff! And while I’m sure it would send me into a diabetic coma if I were to eat a package today, I think I would still love it. I remember being torn between whether to open both sides at once and alternate, or save my favourite flavour of the two for last. The danger of doing that, of course, is not having any candy stick left. I was not above using my finger to get every last grain of delcious sugar out of the packet, but still. It’s not the same when you’re not licking it off the provided stick. Or, you know, using the stick as a candy spoon of sorts.

Even in university, while watching a solid TV line-up one night, my roomies and I made a run to the convenience store and loaded up on candy during a commercial break. By the end of the night we were jumping on the couches and giggling like, well, schoolgirls. But much younger ones. Fun Dip and possibly Nerds were the primary culprits. We also made a run to Tim Horton’s for donuts before they closed for the night one time, too. Living on campus was fun, but off-campus was even funner! 😉

As children, we would often walk to Blackburn’s – the 5 and Dime on the corner – during our lunch break from school, and spend our parents’ hard-earned change on Fun Dip and a myriad of other delectable delights – licorice strings, Bazooka Joe bubble gum with those lame comics inside, chocolate bars of all sorts, those Mackintosh Toffee things that would tear your teeth out but which were sooooo delicious, those things that were…what’s that stuff inside a Crunchie bar? You know? It starts off like a golden foam but you chew it down into a hard candy-like bit? And there was spray gum, candy cracelets and necklaces – the list goes on and on. I don’t even remember what was in the rest of the store – just that candy kiosk near the front by the cash. The hardwood floors would creak under our sneakers from the moment we entered, and it always seemed quiet in there, compared to Creemore’s bustling Mill Street (the street never bustled – but inside the store was even quieter – and incidentally, that the Meat Market was run by a couple of gay guys would not strike me as hilarious until much later in life, but I digress) and Mr Blackburn would greet us, usually by name, and we’d crowd around the candy to choose what would be our one sweet prize that day.

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The most excellent selection was usually the 25-cent grab bags on the bottom shelf. Packaged in white paper bags with a staple at the top, these bags held mysteries forged of candy and plastic, and to my knowledge no two were alike. When feeling flush, the grab bag was usually what we went for, if we could. Candy AND toys?! What better choice could anyone possibly make?!

I remember once a boy in my class asked me to get him a Grab Bag, and handed me a shiny quarter, which I placed in a pocket separate from my own change, so I wouldn’t get it mixed up. I may even have carried it all the way to the store clutched in my fist, actually. I can’t recall for certain, just that I kept it separate. When I got to the store, though, there were no more Grab Bags. Temporarily out of stock. So I paid for whatever I was getting and went back to school. I gave the boy back his quarter and explained that they were sold out that day. He was mad that I didn’t get him something else instead, and I’ve felt bad about it ever since.

It actually hadn’t occurred to me to get anything other than what he’d asked for. There were so many choices, I didn’t know what he’d like as a substitute, and I didn’t want to risk spending his money on something he wouldn’t like. Of course, it was candy, so he probably would’ve liked any of it, but I didn’t consider that at the time. All I knew is they didn’t have what he wanted, so I didn’t get him anything.

Really, he should have just walked to the store on his own two feet, but whatever.

I feel like that kind of uncertainty follows me to this day. I don’t cook for people because I’m afraid they won’t like it and then they’ll be stuck with no other choice from what I gave them. I’ll eat whatever, but I don’t expect anyone else to. I think part of it comes from never having money enough to make mistakes. Like, if I get the wrong thing at the grocery store, I can’t go back and get the right thing, because there’s no extra cash to get a second item to replace the wrong first one. Giving the boy back his quarter was, to me, a better choice than wasting his money on something he might not want. Then he’d have something he didn’t want, and no more quarter, either. If I make a meal wrong or something, there isn’t extra cash – nor usually time – to give it another try and either make the same thing better or make something else entirely. I even have trouble making decisions that involve other people because I always try to anticipate what they want and work out my choice to make sure they get theirs. I know it makes me seem…a lot of not great things…but it’s because I genuinely try to make others at least content. I require less, and I’m used to not really getting what I want. I’m used to not even fully figuring out what I want, because I know I probably won’t get it, either way. Or if I do, it won’t be as good as I’d hoped.

So while I’d have been happy with Tootsie Rolls or Bottle Caps or lime green licorice strings (though grape were my favourite), I had no idea what the boy might have preferred as an alternate to the mysterious Grab Bag, and thus I returned to him his very same shiny quarter to be used another time.

Logically I know, something is better than nothing. But I also know from experience that waiting a bit longer can be better, because sometimes the something you get in the moment isn’t worth not having waited for what you really wanted in the first place.

Sometimes you might wish you could just have your shiny quarter back and get your Grab Bag tomorrow, instead.

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