Friday, February 26, 2010

Virtue and Moir won!!!!

My favorite ice dancing team won the Olympics - Virtue and Moir!!! Oh what a glorious night! They completely deserved to win, they skated with such elegance and grace, just the epitome of what ice dancing is suppose to be, beautiful!

I was quite happy with the results, though I thought Americans, Belbin and Agosto should have placed third. I am sorry that they didn't medal and that they made a terrible decision in changing coaches two years ago. Prior to 2008, Belbin and Agosto were coached by the same people as Virtue and Moir, but than B&A left for a Russian coach, who coaches the Russians Domina and Shabilin. It was a calculated risk and sadly one that B&A lost. That heavy style of ice dancing that was popular in the 1980's and 1990's, the bread and butter of Russian ice dancing, is no longer in vogue. Belbin and Agosto would have done better to stay with their old coaches and what is now the new style of ice dancing. oh well.

What these 2010 Vancouver Olympics figure skating events have shown is that finally (THANK GOD), the Russians are no longer the heir apparents to every figure skating gold medal. I believe this also accounts for the sour grapes from the Russian skaters - for over 50 years they were coming into the Olympics without any doubt that they would leave with a gold medal around their neck, now however the International Skating Union seems to have given notice that to receive the gold, you will have to earn it. I can't wait to see some guard changes in the wonderful world of figure skating!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Two Things and a half!

  1. Is it considered rude to be talking over someone? Let me put this into perspective. I was sitting in the middle seat on a Southwest flight and these two people, who clearly knew each other and had sat down before me, one in the window and one in the aisle, started talking over me (stuck in the middle) during the flight. I was evidently trying to sleep (had even brought my own blanket). I thought this was highly rude. It wasn't like I wanted to sit there, the flight was full! I even asked the lady if she would like to move and she said no. When they began it up again as we descended, I started to pointedly look at each one during the conversation, so they could understand that not only was it bothering me but I was going to listen in. Was their behavior rude??
  2. Got into a conversation with someone at the store the other day. I've come to discover that people here in Arizona very red, but only when it comes to their money. Socially this state is relatively liberal. I find that weird, as Virginia is very socially conservative. But this does explain why someone like John McCain could be Senator and also pro-choice. Native Arizonian's are very anti-government, seem to hate illegal aliens (blaming them for all the state's woes) and think President Obama is to blame for all of America's problems including the Iraq and Afghan wars. They begrudge the stimulus plan but don't have any qualms in taking money from said plan. They hate taxes but say they are willing to help others in need, but only if they (the natives) judge these people to be in need (so poor people would have to be paraded in front on them). Its all just like a foreign planet to me, ugh!
  3. Finally - super congratulations to Evan Lyscek on the Men's Figure Skating gold medal - you deserved it! Men's figure skating isn't only just about jumping, otherwise it would be a jumping contest and not figure skating!

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Opening Ceremonies and Dublin Car Rental

Who watched the 2010 Vancouver Olympics opening ceremony? Obviously I did. I am sorry to say, I love many things about Canada, but this opening ceremony was not one of them. All that comes to mind is, what were they thinking?!

When I imagine Olympic opening ceremonies, I imagine something with life, zing, excitement - this is the time for the host city to set the tone of the entire games, the 16 days that you (the host city) have toiled away for, spent millions of dollars for, is a silly projector show really how you want to go?

I can understand that there was a somber pail over the ceremonies as the poor athlete from Georgia had just died that day, yet Vancouver had been planning these Olympics for over four years, no way they could have dulled down the entire opening show in one day - they had decided to go that route from the beginning. How sad.

Where to begin with what I didn't like, the tiny dancers, nothing much in unison, the somber and sad songs. There was no gravitas to the event.

I had some hope for the moment when they brought out the fiddlers, but even that was done not so well. Instead of an organized step dancing, where we, the audience, would be awed by the unison and synchronization, like one sees in Irish step dancing, it was all haphazard, with bizarre costumes and yellow lightening that washed out the dancers anyway. I wonder if Ireland had done the Olympics, would they include traditional Irish dancing, they would be crazy not too. I know one thing I could count on, getting transportation from with a nice Dublin car rental!

For those who did watch the opening ceremonies of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics, what did you think?

Friday, February 12, 2010

Vanguard Journalism

As most of you know I'm sadly and pathetically unemployed currently (though I have recently resumed my retail job, so I guess this makes me underemployed, since I'm not using my MBA at all in this capacity). But that is neither here nor there. The point of this rather rambling intro sentence was to segue into what I've been doing with myself with all the free time from being non working.

Most of the time I've been sitting on my fat and getting fatter, butt, watching television. I know, this is highly unproductive but its just a funk I've been in. Go figure. Yet, despite the reams of trashy television I've been watching, I did stumble upon something amazing yesterday on the National Geographic Channel. Its called Vanguard Journalism. Essentially it is a documentary series but based on news stories and issues that are going on all around us that don't particularly garner national and international headlines.

For example the documentary I caught was about Mynmar, (Burma). It was just showing everyday Burma, very fascinating since, lets be honest, until there is regime change in that country, I ain't going to be visiting anytime soon. Besides I really wanted to see what this country looks like, as it is so isolated from the rest of the world and yet has so much natural resources and a wealth of culture.

The beauty of this particular project, the Vanguard Journalism, is that they put all their documentaries on their website. Going onto this site is fascinating, there is so much to chose from and the documentaries vary from very long to short pieces! I watched a documentary on the growing cocaine trade in Europe, the rise of Hate Crimes in Russia and even the Burma documentary again.

In this age when there is so much junk out there on the Internet and on the regular television screen, this project is refreshing in its approach: non commercial, enterprising, innovative and most importantly enlightening us to the REAL world we live in!

Here is the link to Vanguard Journalism - see if yourself -

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

The Olympics are Coming! Car Hire Ireland!

First - thank you all for your kind words and suggestions, a week after the rejection, I'm doing much better. I have some new perspectives on the horizon and that is helping A LOT!

As you may or may not be aware, the Winter Olympics begin this Friday!!! I am a HUGE fan of the Winter Olympics! Naturally this is because of the figure skating. I cannot wait for the competitions to begin!!! Its time for some guard change in figure skating and I'm hoping after this Olympics, we (the ice skating world) will shake out some of the old blood and replace with new guys!

The figure skating discipline I will be watching most avidly is Ice Dancing. My favorite couple is Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, from Canada (pictured above), they are poised to win at least a silver. The sad news is that ice dancing, of the four figure skating categories (mens, womens, pairs and ice dancing), is the least likely to see any drastic revolutions. Russians have won the gold in that category for the past 50 years (with two exceptions, GB Torvil and Dean and FR Annissna and Peizorot).

This year more than ever the Russians do NOT deserve to win and yet they will. I hate that about ice dancing. The judges have already set the stage so that Domina and Shablin will win, despite the fact that they were inactive last year due to injuries and did nothing this year except Europeans (to qualify for the Olympics). The Russian's free dance is totally unrefined compared to Virtue and Moir's or American's - Belbin and Agosto's, yet because they are Russian they will get that gold. It is a tragedy! Domina and Shablin skated a month ago at Europeans and I watched their program, not good! They were not in sync and no innovative lifts - dullsville!

My prediction is that unless the Russians just totally fall apart (meaning falling flat on their faces), they will win - though if anyone can beat them its Virtue and Moir (skating in their home country!).

One of the other things I love about the Olympics is seeing all the various countries who compete where winter and winter sports is not a native idea, countries like India, Jamaica, South Africa, Kenya, heck even Ireland. All of these are countries, by the way where I would either have a chauffeur driving or a car hire (i.e. car hire Dublin), if I was going to visit. I'm brave but having never been trained in the British way of driving, I'm not risking it (smile).

Friday, February 05, 2010

Kick A Man When He's Down

Thanks to everyone for their kindness regarding my depression - sadly it has only gotten worse and not better.

Last weekend, I had gone for a job interview, for a job I really, really, REALLY wanted - back with the airline industry!

I applied to be an inflight crew member for a major US airline and oh I so WANTED that job, I made it through THREE screenings (online, automated and phone interview) I made it past 6,000 other people - to the final stage, the in-person interview and that is where I got rejected.

I knew it was tough competition going in (95% of the other people interviewing for the positions were former flight attendants, which I am not) but I really thought I had a chance! I prepped for the interview two weeks in advance, talked to former flight attendants, did practice interviews with myself in the car, researched the company, everything I could think of. I am so disappointed. I know I should not have put all my hopes into that one ball and I have been looking for other jobs. But that is the one I WANTED!! It just really hurts, that rejection. I know they say don't take it personally, but when the interview is so much focused on your personality how can one not take it like an attack on your being, on who you are, no?

The worse part is that I was OVERJOYED at the idea that I would be going back to the airlines, you can't even imagine (actually if you read this blog than you are one of the few people who could imagine, as you know my passion for the airline industry), so this was a double blow. I could taste the jet fuel - it was so close and than to get it snatched away, just heartbreaking!

Since that rejection, I've decided that 2010 is not going to be my year and I'm refusing to get my hopes up anymore for anything. I know its not very positive but I just can't take the heartbreak.

Well....I'm off to cry a little, not that it helps anything but since the rejection I've been doing a lot of that : )

Monday, February 01, 2010

Sentimento azul em um estado ensolarado

Have you ever had that feeling, of being depressed for no apparent reason?? That has been happening to me recently and I can't explain it. I get so blue all I want to do is sit in front of the television and eat or I just burst into tears or just want to run home to my parents and cling to them.

As regular readers of my blog will know, I was often depressed in the past about not being married, but that is no longer the case. I am not in want for anything, except maybe a job, but that is more for my intellectual challenge than because we are poor. I had an amazing birthday (my birthday was January 24th) one of the best on record. So what is the cause of this depression?

The only thing I can think is that everything that has happened to me, getting married, moving all the way across the country, being jobless, away from friends and family and than losing my beloved grandfather has suddenly hit me. Does that make sense?? Has anyone else experienced that??

Actually this past weekend, when I was in Florida, I went to visit my grandfather's grave site, it was so hard. I didn't realize how difficult it would be. As my cousin and I left the cemetery, I began thinking of my loved ones and their mortality - its just to tragic to ponder. I seriously believe I will go catatonic when any of them should pass. And all of this thinking cannot be good for my on-going depression. Aye!

Any suggestions to move out of this funk are welcome!