Category Archives: Musings
… feet can’t keep on the ground. Can’t stay in one place. Keep moving like a bullet train…
… like a bullet train.
Life moves quickly, summer moved so quickly.
My life has gone through quite a bit of change this year, new derby team, new job.. new everything.
I made the difficult decision to end a relationship this year. Something that I had been thinking about for a very long time. I wish I could say it was a mutual decision, but it wasn’t. Each day I sit with the weight of my decision on my shoulders, 6 years of a life that’s now black and white and in the past, like a limb that’s since gone numb, it’s there.. but it doesn’t move. I realize how selfish I was in making that decision, but know that at the end of the day – I needed to make myself happy and healthy and find myself in a good place.
I moved out of our house, and stayed with a friend for 3 weeks as I went on an odyssey of sorts.
I flew out to Calgary and helped my family move and decompressed and reminisced about my old life before marriage – the family, the friends. I hung out with my high school friends – the commune – and had a fantastic morning of brunch, pokewalks, froyo and macarons. The weekend filled my heart with messages of support and just the overall presence of amazing people in my life.
Then it was Rollercon.
It was amazing. Simply amazing. Skate park with derby heroes, skating with and against derby heroes.. crossing things off of my derby bucket list. Shooting a Barrett M107A1 sniper rifle in the morning and then playing ALL the derby in the afternoon! I was so amazed that I could keep up with such high level skaters and not die, and did I mention I got to announce a few games? It was so much the amazing experience. I just remember standing in the middle of the main hall one day and smiling to myself about how incredible it was to finally be there.
Then it was a week to find a place, which I did. Spent the rest of the week acquiring furniture and then suddenly it was off to Cloverdale to play against the Smokin’ Laces.. and boy, it was a tough game for me. It was my first away game where I knew I wouldn’t be coming home to the same house at the end of the weekend and not only that, my co-captain Ruby Roughhouser, had also broken her leg before the game. It was.. mentally and physically tough to play, but I finished the game with a smile on my face.. ready to take a bit of a break.
At that point I was starting to feel very much like a hobo, traveling was wearing on me and I just wanted a place to hang my hat at the end of the day.
Moved into my new place the week after the Cloverdale game.. and it was off to Victoria for a family reunion… and what a reunion it was. Note to self, bring earplugs! It was wonderful to see family again, especially family I don’t see very often. Getting to do a road trip with my Brother and his family was great.
I got to stand on a ferry and look out into the ocean and think about how much life has changed in the past year, even in just the past month and how much it’s going to keep changing.
The only constant in life is change.
I realized that I did make the right decision – and though it still weighs on me, it weighs a little less and less each day. My anxiety lessens each day and I smile a little bit more and more, I finally feel like I can be myself and not feel like I have to filter my personality.
I’ve had such a life-changing summer, and it’s been quite the adventure… sometimes I look back on my instagram photos and facebook posts and I still can’t even fathom the things I’ve done… I hope there’s only more on the horizon.
I’ve kind of hummed and hawed over what I wanted to write here… turning 30 seems like this weird foreign thing that I haven’t quite wrapped my head around… but at the same time, age is only a number.
If I could go back and have a conversation with myself on that 20th Birthday, I would tell myself a few things:
- Your real friends are the ones who stick around no matter what. No matter if you come and go and find new friends, your true friends are the ones who will welcome you back every time, they don’t judge you (though they might make light of your life choices). They become your second family, and sometimes know you better than you know yourself. Those friendships will help you grow and you’ll realize how amazing those people in the next few years.
- Relationships do not define who you are. Yes, a relationship may seem important, but who you are with does not define you. A good relationship can add purpose to your life, but it shouldn’t be the only purpose you have.
- You are who you choose to be. In the past 10 years, I’ve been able to explore so many different opportunities because I’ve followed my passions. “Cars aren’t your entire life?” , “Skating is just a phase?” I guess I’m not very good at listening, because I followed my passions. I’ve gotten to work within an industry that I’ve always wanted to, I even got to try out for a national team (and I plan on doing it again). Follow your heart, find your feet and you’ll be impressed where you end up.
- Find someone who makes you the best version of you that you can be. Yeah, sometimes it can be a headache, and sometimes he seems like a pain in the ass, but without him, I don’t know where I would be. Dave has this way of pushing me out of my comfy bubble, he knows how competitive I can get, and he helps me be the best person I can be.
- Simple things are sometimes the best things. A dance party when you clean your house, people watching at the mall, sunshine, the feeling of freedom on skates. The beauty in life is in the simplicity of something that can bring a smile to your face. Life can get complicated, just stop and smell the roses once in a while.
10 years is a long time to figure things out, people grow and change, life moves quickly. I can only hope that in the next 10 years, the journey keeps taking me to amazing places. Let’s go!
A long long time ago, I fell into this circle of friends… not quite entirely sure how I got there, but… there I was. Y’know those puzzle pieces that just, don’t quite fit… but you try to make it fit?
Yeah, that was me.
As my life fell apart… like it seemed to have done on a yearly basis between the ages of 18-21, I vividly remembered something that one of those so-called friends told me.
“There is more to life than cars.”
While I can agree with that, I will have to mention this…. without cars, my life wouldn’t be what it is now.
I have a bit of an obsessive quality in my personality, I get super-passionate about something and it becomes the only thing I can think about.. skating, wrestling, cars.. if I was interested in it, at one point.. it was the only thing I could think about. At that point in my life, my life was cars… I had just gotten my drivers license, I was attempting to save up for my first car. In my head, having a car meant freedom, it meant that the only rules I needed to abide by was the rules of the road (and we all know those rules are merely a guideline 😉 ).
Needless to say, those ‘friends’ I had didn’t stay my friends for much longer, and me… I said fuck it, and followed my heart. I wanted to work in Automotive Marketing, I wanted to be part of that industry… I worked my ass off, and everyone knows.. the harder you work, the luckier you get.
I got to be part of the automotive community in Calgary, a big part of the Mitsubishi scene in the 403, worked with dealers, clubs… I got to meet Dave, who I then moved out with and got to move on to much bigger and better things.
… all because I followed my bloody mother effing heart.
I look at the pieces of my life right now, things that people said I’d grow out of, things that people said were a phase… and I’ll be honest, I don’t see any of those, i see all the epic things that I’ve been able to do, amazing people and journeys that I’ve been able to go on…
… and all because what?
Nobody sees the world through your eyes, nobody knows how you process or what your motivations are. Find your feet, follow your path, because people WILL doubt you, people will think you’re crazy and obsessed, but y’know what.. that’s their energy they’re wasting.
You do you, and don’t worry about what anyone else says.
FOLLOW YOUR HEART!
Yesterday it snowed in Kelowna, and it snowed so much that it broke a decades old record!
I love this type of weather when I don’t have anywhere to be, it was fun to watch the snow keep coming down and down, but not so fun shoveling the mass amounts of snow or poking the snow off of the Pinto tent. School was cancelled, highways were a mess, but everyone hunkered down and it doesn’t appear that there were any terrible accidents yesterday.
And now we wait for it to melt!
– Until then…
Update 3: Card giftee really enjoyed their card and the TARDIS: http://redditgifts.com/gallery/gift/so-very-perfect-thank-you-ss/
And Secret Santa giftee enjoyed their gift (no pictures though): http://redditgifts.com/gallery/gift/secret-santa-gift-619/
annd I got my gift just in time for Christmas: http://redditgifts.com/gallery/gift/delicious-davids-tea/
The experiment was successful and taught me that I should be patient haha, I love the tea I recieved and can’t wait to enjoy it, and I love that I was able to cheer someone up on a stressful day.
Result: Success! Would do again!
update 2! Giftee has responded! Can’t wait to see how they enjoy the gift 🙂
Update: gift santa has pulled my information! Excitement building 🙂 hopefully this experiment will prove more fun 🙂
A few months ago, while surfing the interweb, I stumbled upon the reddit gift exchange. After many hours of research and looking at various gifts that people have sent over the years (including Bill Gates), I decided to sign up. I love giving gifts and if I got a gift out of it, it would be a bonus. As the days got closer to the exchange, I got more and more excited as to who I would get matched with… would it be someone who liked roller derby like me? would it be a girl or a boy, and would they like the random things that I would purchase and send to them.
I chose not to get matched internationally, just based on the exorbitant shipping costs here in Canada, so I knew for sure that my giftee would be from Canada.
Matching day came around and I was matched with a girl who liked Harry Potter among other interests like travelling and the colour green. I messaged my giftee and put a whimsical spin on things, but got very little in a response back from her… so I pressed on, and went to the mall the following night to purchase gifts for what is, a complete stranger. I found lovely things based on her interests, even added in a little treat for her furry friend that she had listed on her interests and happily went home to package up what I thought would be a wonderful gift for anyone to receive.
Meanwhile, on the other side of things, I was anxiously awaiting the moment where my own santa would pull my information and ask me questions about my interests. I had long since shipped my gift away, but my own santa had not even pulled my information. As the days wore on, and more and more gifts were posted on the gallery, I felt like a little kid that was on the outside looking in.
I knew that there was a chance that I would get someone who wasn’t like me, who was in for just receiving a gift and not giving one, but as the number of matches received kept going up, the feeling of being left out kept growing.
I then signed up for the Holiday Card Exchange, because hey! I make cards and I would love for them to bring joy in someone’s day. I signed up to be an international match for someone, and got someone in Seattle (not as exotic of a location as I had hoped), but I made and sent them a card just the same. This time, my own holiday card santa pulled my information, but only once, and has since not marked the card as shipped (the deadline was yesterday).
My own gift to my giftee was delivered this week, a few days earlier than I had anticipated… and now I’m anxiously awaiting their post to see if they enjoyed their overstuffed gift full of chocolate and good intentions. I even dropped a message to them, wishing them a happy holiday in the hopes that they would respond and say that they enjoyed the gift, but days have gone by and I still have not received any messages back.
I’m not going to lie, as fun as it was to give gifts and make cards which did bring me some holiday joy, I can’t help but feel a shred of sourness between my giftee who didn’t seem grateful at all to my first santa not even bothering to pull my information, to another one who hasn’t even mailed a card yet (to my knowledge). I know that this wasn’t the aim of the Reddit gift exchange, and I am still willing to try it again next year… the first round of this experiment is not yielding any fully happy results.
That said, the exchange is still in full swing, and there is still lots of time, so like a little kid, I’ll wait by the window for my santa (and update the post accordingly!)
– until then…
PS. I think I got sucked into the world of reddit, and love reading /r/lego among other good things to read…
I’m not old. I swear.
I honestly, feel like a teenager again. My daily life consists of work, homework, training and if I’m lucky, I get to hit up the skate park, another one in a long list of things that have become obsessions for Blair Block.
It honestly started pretty innocently at the beginning of summer, in my quest to find new things to try on my skates, I came across the awesome Rollerbones video of Estro Jen (aka Michelle Steilen), and from there it became this need to try to play at the skate park.
A Sunday skate date led me into the the skate park at Ben Lee and from then on, I felt like I wanted to just keep getting better and better because it was just so fun.
I’d find myself among 3 people at the park on Sunday mornings and just even dropping into a ramp and feeling the speed threw a shit-eating grin on my face because it’s just so damn fun.
I’m not going to lie, I don’t have any tricks I can pull, I just seriously love to ride the ramps and try to jump over things (I can’t even shoot the duck yet..), but just the sheer challenge to different levels and areas is just so much fun.
If you really want to get comfortable on your skates and want to step outside of your comfort zone, go to the skate park, try things out and pretty soon you too will be addicted! Also, check out Chicks In Bowls on Facebook!
If you recall, I wrote an open letter on my blog a few years ago (found here: https://thelancergirl.wordpress.com/2011/10/19/an-open-letter-to-castanet-net/). Well, I’m writing to you yet again.
Above is an example of your ‘news’ reporting versus the real news being reported by Global News Okanagan. Both Links here ( http://www.castanet.net/edition/news-story-104060-1-.htm#104060 and here http://globalnews.ca/news/1009547/vehicle-crashes-into-tree-two-taken-to-hospital/) Both stories involve the same incident, but while one news outlet simply reports the news, the other puts the “high speed” spin to the story.
Even simply looking at the headline, you see the vast difference in the quality of reporting on Castanet, even before the reader reads the article, they are pre-disposed into thinking that it’s yet again, another wreckless driver speeding on our public roads (Oh, won’t somebody think of the children?!), the Global News article simply states that a vehicle has crashed into the tree and that two people were sent to the hospital, no assumption, just stating the facts.
When you delve further into the article, you realize that Global News has gone through the scene and asked questions and gathered facts about the accident, whereas Castanet has hashed together a story quickly in order to post it first. Remember kids, it’s all about quality… not quantity!
I’m not going to lie, I do visit Castanet.net daily, a few times a day.. but it is simply to view the headlines, laugh at their lack of progress and then right over to Global News to actually read the news articles. Castanet still has not changed their layout, there’s still glaringly painful ads bashing me in the eyeballs upon page load (and god forbid you try to load the site on your phone, they turn into magical animated GIFS!), headlines are often misleading and articles are still filled with rushed together content that needs to be edited and updated AFTER the content is published.
It’s probably weird to admit that looking at Castanet’s website actually makes me angry, it makes me angry that it is so successful, yet is not accountable for it’s poorly written articles, boring original content, and horrible web layout. It makes me angry that Castanet has survived for so long, but then I realize that with the ebb and flow of the internet, Castanet’s days are numbered. Global News and Shaw have created an easy to read (on ANY device) news digest that I can quickly look at (and it’s not painful to look at) and get what I need out of the news. Content is held to the standards of the Canadian Press and videos are done professionally with real video equipment (not shot on an iPad), for me, yes.. Castanet may have the ‘exclusive’ story first, but Global News will have the story correct and properly written.
So, Castanet, I bid you adieu again.. and hope that someday, maybe you too can join us in the modern age.
I originally started this entry about 3 years ago, when Fast 4 was hitting theatres, but with the recent passing of F&F star Paul Walker, the reason I started this entry came back into my head.
What not many of my derby friends know about me is that I guess you could say I was raised on the F&F (Fast and the Furious)…
I saw the first trailer for it in grade 10, I was about 15 at the time.. thinking about becoming a pro-wrestler and things other than the automotive world. I honestly, didn’t really think far too much about it… my love for cars had not taken over at that point. I had a learners permit, but that was all.
I finally saw the movie at the end of 2001, and in that 106 minutes of vehicular mayhem … I was hooked. I had fallen in love with the bright green Mitusbishi Eclipse (with 7 gears 😉 ) at the beginning of the movie, and felt pain for it when it was pumped full of bullets… and so began the obsession… which car to buy, what to mod.. how to do this.. I want to go faster.. so on, and so forth.
In 2003, I had finally gotten my full on Driver’s license… and 2Fast2Furious hit the screens. I was working at the movie theatre at the time (hoping to save up for a Honda CRX), and was able to see it for free! I loved Suki’s Character in the movie, she inspired me to continue down the path of designing for the automotive world, and being in the automotive world. That year my brother and I attended the Street Car Challenge at Race City Speedway, and we even created a video of the event, we were so enthralled with drifting and the automotive world.
2006 was the year of The Betty, also the year of Justin Lin’s “Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift”
Betty was my first car, and I wanted to make her the most unique Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart to ever hit the streets…. all due in part to… The Fast and The Furious. I don’t think the car community that I lived in would’ve been the same without this franchise. They defined a sub-set of enthusiasts and put them into the spotlight. My brother and I wanted to be part of that world when we were younger, and with Betty.. we worked together and became an integral part of the Mitsubishi enthusiast community in Calgary. We did the shows, we went to track nights.. I drag raced my car. We did a lot of awesome shit because we loved those movies, it was from those movies that it inspired us to be car kids.
“I live my life a quarter mile at a time…”
“Life’s simple, you make choices and you never look back”
“Dude, I almost had you!” – “You almost had me? You never had me? You never had your car!”
“Ask any racer, any real racer.. it don’t matter if win by an inch or a mile, winning’s winning.”
Yeah, I bought into the hype, but within this hype the tuner life led me to some awesome places or experiences, the car community was a great place to be.
Yesterday, the car community lost someone who not only starred in the films that helped define a part of our culture, but also someone who was a true enthusiast of the automotive world. While many news reports can say that he was a victim of speed, deep down we all know that he passed away doing something that he loved, and that was being in a moving, and functional piece of technological art, and pushing that piece of art to the very limits of it’s capacity. It’s definitely strange to have a celebrity death impact me that much, but to me.. it almost feels like a fellow car guy that I would see at a meet just passed away. He was one of us, he loved the scene as much as we did… he helped define the scene to some degree, and I know that the Fast and Furious franchise will never be the same without him.
Rest in peace Paul Walker / Brian O’Conner, we’ll see you up at the quarter mile in the sky.
I love weekends. They provide me with time to get offline, do some crafting, skating.. time to clean the house.. all, great and wonderful things.
I also hate weekends… they tend to have a lack of routine, company coming, dinners out and time spent with my husband who has horrible eating habits (Sorry Dave :()
I managed to stick to eating properly for an entire 2 week period, I made good eating decisions. I was very active as well, but once the weekend hit… BAM, no routine, no preparation and I was eating not-so-great food and forgetting my daily water intake.
All that hard work I managed to do in a 2 week period was wiped away by one long weekend of eating not as cleanly as I would’ve liked to. I remained active over the weekend (Skated Friday, Bootcamped on Saturday and did the stairs on Monday), but like Carly reminds me.. “You cannot out train a bad diet”
Weekends are hard on trying to eat clean, but I take the bad with the good and remember that not-so-long-ago I would’ve been eating far worse than I had been over the weekend, and that’s an accomplishment.
That being said, I wish it was the weekend already. 😦