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Showing posts from September, 2016

speechless

i don't know what i was expecting from the candidates' debate monday night, but i'm pretty certain i wasn't expecting that. i spent a lot of time during the debate reminding myself that i was deeply biased and that i was probably just getting an exaggerated idea of how uneven things truly were. and yes, there was a lot of noise on twitter, but that's like an echo chamber, since i mostly follow people who land somewhere along the same political continuum as i do. even afterward, watching msnbc, i repeated to myself that the hosts were both liberal and pro-clinton, but, gradually, and after careful consideration, i had to admit what i had already known to be the fact: donald trump was so awful it defied belief.

howard fineman, global editorial director of the huffington post, proclaimed trump's performance to be the worst he'd ever seen, and while many will point out that hp isn't exactly an unbiased source, fineman has seen some things in the political s…

mental health mondays :: sadly, it does happen

one of the worst things that a person with a mental disorder can hear from friends and loved ones is that what they're going through isn't real, or the close cousin of that accusation, that it isn't serious. the fear that they might be disbelieved, or the idea that they're somehow weaker or less capable people are among the chief reasons why people who have disorders seek help to begin with. but here's the bad news: some people do exaggerate or outright fake mental illness. the reasons behind this can vary, but it happens, and it's one of the hardest things for even a seasoned professional to diagnose.

the official term for faking/ exaggerating an illness [mental or otherwise] is malingering, a word of old french origin that, as you might have guessed, also gives us the english word malign. the reasons for malingering range from gaining financial benefit to avoiding legal responsibility to mental illness. wait, what? yes, you read that right. people who are fa…

colour analysis is more than red, white and blue

a few years back, i took an interest in the sci/ art system of personal colour analysis, an extension of the old "find your season" colour typing that took into account not just the temperature of colours that are suited to certain people, but also the level of saturation [how far the colour lies from grey] and tone [how light or dark it is]. i like this three-dimensional system because i find that it neatly encapsulates the ways in which we perceive colour. i also like the fact that it's based on how the skin reacts to different colours, rather than hair and eye colour, or just guessing based on skin tone. one of the first things that i learned looking into this world was that it is very, very possible to be surprised by what looks good on me. [yellow? rust? not things i would have expected.]

in these past years, i've experimented with colour-analysing my husband and my cats. i've dressed myself up and made myself up as every season and i've picked lipstick…

mental health mondays :: trigger tuesday

in the last year or so, i've received a lot of requests to cover the topic of 'triggers' for mental health mondays. in fact, i did cover part of the topic back in 2011, but the fact is that that post is out of date considering how the use of the term has grown. when i wrote the piece originally, it was an attempt to explain how the term was related to panic attacks because i felt like it was a term that was misunderstood. four years later, i still think that it's a term that's misunderstood, but for different reasons. now, it's not merely necessary to understand what triggers are, but to understand what they aren't, because the term has gone from being misunderstood to being abused. so today, i present, trigger 2- the misunderstanding.

first of all, i want to make something clear: triggers are 100% real and not uncommon. they are reactions to past trauma that are uncontrolled and which may or may not seem related to the trauma itself. for instance, a survi…

making faces :: more scary stuff

i've ventured into uncharted cosmetic waters on this blog a few times; i dipped into the worlds of pastel blue eyeshadow and nude lips, neither of which is something i wear under normal circumstances. but today it occurred to me that there was one very obvious thing that's always been scary to me that i hadn't tried. and i don't mean that i hadn't tried it on the blog; i mean that i hadn't tried it ever. today, i put on makeup, but i didn't wear mascara.

now, i've gone mascara-less before, many times, but it's always been on days when i just eschewed makeup entirely [there are more of those than you'd think]. i literally cannot recall a single time when i've put on makeup but passed on the lashes. lashes are kind of my thing. when i was born, my mother tells me that the first thing she noticed about me was that i had long, curly lashes, so i guess that made me a bit vain and protective about them. they're somewhat sparser than they used…

mental health mondays :: laugh it off

in the history of mental health mondays, we've covered some pretty novel and controversial treatments for various disorders: crystal meth for adhd, lsd for addiction, ketamine for treatment-resistant depression. but this latest one really takes the crazy cake for me, because it turns out that those sanctimonious assholes who tell people to just laugh off their depression may not have been so very wrong after all: there is an increasing body of science that indicates nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, may offer at least short-term relief from the notorious treatment-resistant depression.

this is still very much something that's "under exploration". a preliminary study that looked at a number of methods of treating resilient depression showed very promising results, in that those who took nitrous oxide felt happier both two and twenty-four hours later- indicating that the effect lasted much longer than the immediate high. some patients continued to show an imp…

the blessings of boring

sometimes it's hard for me to think that the entire universe isn't organised around my thoughts. it's difficult for each and every one of us to think that, because there are moments when everything seems to come into focus around us. and this morning, i had one of those moments.

i was trying to figure out how to wrap up "boring week" [in case you hadn't noticed the general boredom that's been going through all my posts], and sipping my coffee late in the morning, when suddenly the power went out. that's actually pretty boring in itself, because the power goes out in our building way more often than it should. i should probably worry about that. this time, though, it turns out that there were major blackouts over several sections of the city, and hydro quebec was indicating that it could be as long as six or seven hours until they had everyone back online. so there i was, contemplating boredom, when all of my access to the things that normally enterta…

armchair centre back :: is the premier league going to be boring this year?

well, we all knew that it was going to be difficult to top last year, what with the cinderella story of leicester, the battle to the wire with tottenham hotspur, chelsea's epic meltdown and the ousting of their antichrist manager jose mourinho, the bumbling and stumbling of manchester united, the struggle between northern rivals newcastle and sunderland to stay in the nation's top league... basically, yes, this year was always going to be boring.

and over the summer, it became obvious that the powers that be, or at least the powers that be rich, were going to do whatever they could to make sure everything stayed nice and predictable. the two manchesters and chelsea opened their pocketbooks wide and almost literally threw money at their problems, signing players at such a speed that i'm not even sure who all they bought. manchester united made the first €100 million signing in paul pogba, which was kind of news except that everyone was spending so much money, it barely reg…

making faces :: boring reviews

if someone were to ask me where to start with makeup, how to build up confidence wearing it, it's likely that the last thing i'd recommend would be a really dramatic lipstick. after all, that's just the sort of thing that will be noticeable, even on complexions that are well-suited to bold colours [hello my bright-season sisters!], if you're not used to wearing makeup regularly. playing around with soft, neutral eyeshadows is an option, but quite honestly, visible shadow on its own looks a bit weird to me. instead, i'd tell people that their best bet would be to start with mascara and foundation.

yet, when you look at the products i've talked about on this blog, there is an overwhelming bias towards colour cosmetics- lipstick, shadow, blush- and barely any attention to those basics. and that is because reviewing those things, despite their relative importance, is boring. it's boring for me to write about and, i assume, boring for you to read. in both cases…

worldwide wednesdays :: news of no interest

because it's boring week, i thought i would regale you with a few completely uninteresting things that have been happening in the world we live in. there are lots of reasons why you don't generally hear about these things through the north american media, but the most important one is that they're just boring and have no real consequence for anyone. but hey, this isn't where you come for hard news [i hope].

1. hong kong had an election :: of course, there's no reason you need to care about this unless you live in hong kong, or possibly china. who pays attention to state elections like that anyway? well, ok, it turns out china is kind of paying attention, because the election saw pro-democracy parties increase the number of seats it holds, strengthening its power to veto important pieces of legislation. however, that doesn't represent a radical shift. sure, those parties now have 30 out of 70 seats, but they had 27 before, so the increase is pretty marginal. so…