Monday, January 28, 2013

Things you might like

Here is a list of things that tend to make my online life better which is in continuation with our love of the internet theme. (if you liked the internet post, read these two recently added articles from The Star)
http://www.thestar.com/living/health/article/1319795--is-the-internet-bad-for-us

http://www.thestar.com/living/health/article/1319795--is-the-internet-bad-for-us
If you only click on one of these links, make it this one. Something to get you excited about being alive.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=l-gQLqv9f4o

then these
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=afLqsnSHOFE

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n58bFRauLL4

Where I get my manly intake of stuff:
http://www.esquire.com/
http://www.askmen.com/

News:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/
http://www.time.com/time/

Music:
http://www.billboard.com/

http://www.ct40.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=532:top-40-chart-january-26-2013&Itemid=244

Tons of different things:
http://www.stumbleupon.com/home

Travel info:
http://wikitravel.org/en/Main_Page
http://www.tripadvisor.com/
http://th.skyscanner.com/

If you don't listen to podcasts, you should. They are small radio like shows, ranging from 3 minutes to more than an hour. Tons of different areas to learn about like business, sports, news, entertainment. politics, learning a new language, etc. Just go to iTunes, click on podcasts and start downloading. I recommend these to get you going:
Podcasts:
NPR Planet Money
Freakonomics
NFL Football Today
Stuff You Should Know

iTunes Radio. On the left hand side, underneath the Podcast heading. Pick a genre, then pick a station. Most are commercial free. 

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're 

right.” 

― Henry Ford

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Are you in love with the internet?

A few weeks ago I read an article in Newsweek about people being addicted to the internet. I found it very surprising and fascinating. Then I did a tad more research to support what I read and thought I would share what I found because I think everyone can relate in some way.


Just like anything, not overdoing indulging in any activity is bad. Food, reading, hair washes, chocolate milk use. I think the main thing is just being aware of all of your habits, how they affect you in your professional and personal life. It is kind of like writing down every item you buy to see where all of your money is going. Then at the end of the month you realize that you are spending $300 on back scratches. Once you know there is a problem, you can start to fix it, and maybe start using a wall or a tree to scratch your back...like a grizzly bear does. Taking online quizzes is sort of a fun way to get feedback which I found about internet addiction. If you think you love the internet a little too much take this quick test. (pssst-you will probably take the test because it means more time online...which you love......you addict you)

http://www.netaddiction.com/index.php?option=com_bfquiz&view=onepage&catid=46&Itemid=106


Common characteristics that come up are low self-esteem, poor motivation,and fear of rejection. Some people might enjoy the internet a bit more than most is if they are socially awkward and have trouble communicating. Kimber Young wrote in a paper I read that "the disappearance of facial expression, voice inflection, and eye contact makes electronic communication less threatening, thereby helping the depressive to overcome the initial awkwardness and intimidation in meeting and speaking with others". Also knows as online dating. 
Makes sense if you have trouble forming relationships in person, expressing yourself virtually with other people from around the world makes your life better, why not get as much joy out of that as you can. So of why online gaming, which is incredible, is so fun. 

The scariest thing from the Newsweek article about overuse of the internet noted that the internet  "may be making us not just dumber or lonelier but more depressed and anxious...our digitized minds can scan like those of drug addicts". DRUG ADDCITS!!?? That can't be good. Peter Whybrow argues that "the computer is like electronic cocaine" fueling cycles of mania followed by depressive stretches.
I find that kind of hard to believe but people do love their iPhone's and WiFi passwords. A Stanford study if iPhone habits found that one in 10 users feels "fully addicted" to his or her phone." I'm sure everyone can think of times where you are somewhere and everyone is on their phone or inappropriately checking their FB Timeline. 

Dilbert.comI probably would be as well but my phone cost $20 and barely receives text messages. I enjoy the internet, mainly to message my friends, use Skype and watch football. I'm not a huge gamer like in Taiwan or Korea where people have literally died from gaming too much or a Korean family who let their real life baby starve while they played house in a virtual world:

 http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2012-09-19-death-by-gaming-why-taiwans-cafe-culture-is-killing-gamers

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/mar/05/korean-girl-starved-online-game

Finally, you remember that KONY 2012 viral video that was about raising awareness about an evil African warlord? Apparently one of men involved in making the video become so obsessed with all of the media attention, feedback and other things that go along with instant fame and success and didn't exactly handle it well and there is a video of him, doing not sane things. "The same digital tools that supported his mission seemed to tear at his psyche, exposing him to non-stop kudos and criticisms, and ending his arm's-length relationship with new media..."

The best stat I found that is kind of remarkable is that "the average person, regardless of age, sends or receives about 400 texts a month, four times the 2007 number. The average teen processes an astounding 3,700 texts a month" I don't get 400 texts a month. I'm not that cool, there I said it. But hopefully cooler than this girl:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g3jOlQqDPzQ
or this girl
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mg11glsBW4Y

And the best quote I found about all of this which I find very true is "we may appear to be choosing to use this technology, but in fact we are being dragged to it by the potential of short term rewards. Every ping could be social, sexual, or professional opportunity, and we get a mini-reward, a squirt of dopamine, for answering the bell."
Stay aware out their people, say hi to your neighbor, but don't go fetch anything on his roof for him, trust me. 















Many people want to change their life, but they are not will

 to change their choices, and ultimately this changes 

nothing.



Also, if you want to check out my debut in Thailand radio, here you go. Hopefully a former gospel radio host is enjoying this somewhere. This video may or may not work. If not, I can email it to you.
video



citations:
The Relationship Between Depression and Internet Addiction by Kimberly S. Young and Robert C. Rodgers
http://www.netaddiction.com/articles/cyberpsychology.pdf

Newsweek, July 16th 2012



Thursday, January 17, 2013

Life of Cast


Life with my new cast friend is coming to an end tomorrow. Sigh. We've had some good and bad times. Nothing is perfect, other than my stronger and better left wrist! Some perks I've noticed about life with my first and last cast of my life:

1-I've gotten away with not wearing a tie to work for the last six weeks. I love dressing up but business casual has been a decent upside to Roofageddon 2012.

2-Excellent excuse to be lazy. Not playing sports or being anti-social while healthy isn't very good and makes you feel poorly about yourself. Saying no to things because it is in the best interests of your long term health is a great way to spend more time watching football.


3-Solid icebreaker. Oh what happened to your arm? Oh that? No big deal..I was in the jungle and a small child was being attacked by some aggressive monkeys, don't worry, the baby is fine. 

4-People do a bit more for you in terms of bringing you things, getting you food, driving you places. I like it.

5-Actually a good reason to pay someone to wash my hair.

6-Getting good at driving, showering, putting socks on and other tasks with only one hand.

Small downsides:
1-People assume I fell off a bike and can't drive. I'm actually just someone who doesn't understand roofing standards in Phuket.

2-Typing is a bit of a challenge.


3-Not playing sports or being active is by far the worst part of all of this. No diving, no swimming, not a recipe for an incredible time.


It really wasn't very bad. All of the research I did was take it super slow, you might think you are getting better but breaking it again will put you out even longer and might have problems in the future. So I've been super careful and will continue to go super slow in the upcoming weeks.
The biggest thing I got out of this was even if a doctor is saying one thing, saying no and talking to other doctors is a great idea. The doctor in Phuket wanted to put me into a cast right away that went all the way up my arm. Wanted to send it to my brothers friend who is a doctor and who I trust. Also, there is a slight disparity between doctors in Thailand and Canada, will leave it at that. 

I don't know anything about breaks and he was suppose to be a specialist and wanted to put me in a cast right away.  Not waiting for the swelling to go down isn't a great course of action and the cast might not have fit a week later. Anyway, don't let people persuade you into doing things you don't feel comfortable with. Do what you think is right for you. Enjoy your weekend, stay safe and out of the headlines!

"We are the average of the 5 people we spend the most time with" Jim Rohn

Monday, January 14, 2013

Bali, Amed, Gili Islands and Kuta!



A little behind in how Christmas and New Year's was. Mainly because typing with one hand isn't the way I want to live my life. Cast should come off on Saturday, wrist is feeling stronger and excited to get back to a two wrist lifestyle.
Bali:
The night before we left for Bali we had to spend a night in Hat Yai because we were flying out of their around 12ish the next day. Which is great because Hat Yai is our guy's weekend destination with good food and places to go at night. Good food? Check. Staying at a dodgy hotel? Check. Having one of the girls that had the same flight as Arvid and I ruin our next day of travel due to her purchase of a giant ton of non-alcoholic strawberry liquid? Check. Got to the airport the next day, fairly big rainstorm for 30 minutes, apparently long enough to delay us that we missed our connecting flight. Talked with the girl from Air Asia, said it wasn't their fault (shockingly!) and had to buy new tickets. So the girl gives Arvid a price for the new tickets, consults Chelsea and I, said alright, told the Air Asia girl we would like the new tickets, she then scribbles out the first number, then doubles it. Our fair doubled in the span of 30 seconds due to apparent online purchases. Air Asia 1 Red strawberry drink 1 Bert 0.
So a few short things about Bali first. 1-Have wanted to go to Bali for a while now but also very aware that having high expectations for anything, especially places is a bad idea. 2-Second biggest reason I wanted to go to Indonesia was to scuba dive. Really into it, haven't been since Similan Island live-a-board and really wanted to do a wreck dive. WELL, we have this roof to thank for no diving for Teacher Bert due to his broken wrist. 
3-Main reason I was down for this trip was getting to spend time with Jake, Emma and Kait who I unfortunately don't see as much as before. 
We spent our first few days in Amed. Spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day there. Had a family villa, Kait got there around 1ish on the 25th, we all opened up Christmas presents, which was amazing. Got a Japanese book from Kait that I devoured quickly and a pretty fancy Japanese headband. Got some clothes and other small things, a very successful Christmas hall in my opinion.
Everyone went diving on Christmas Day, I stayed back, read and got a really great Balinese massage. Spending Christmas a second year away from home is a little easier, especially when it is plus 30 degrees outside.


Balinese tradition is to eat a babi guling, basically a suckling pig for weddings or special holidays. We drove around trying to find the cheapest guy to roast us a pig along with vegetables and a nice setting. Check, check, check. Our main man Regga hooked us up. Set up at a restaurant that nobody was eating at for most of the night, right on the water. Really good food, some Jim Bean, tequilla and LED Hoops. Then grabbed some fireworks and set them off on the top of a cliff. Great day.



After a few days in Amed, we went to the Gily islands. Most accommodations were full but Emma had reserved us a decent place with hot water and breakfast in a big family room. Gily islands were beautiful but they have these little horses carrying passengers and luggage. Kind of sad actually. After researching it a bit, it is a major complaint of tourists and websites and petitions wanting change on the island. it really isn't a great situation.
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/189/--if-gte-mso-9xml-wworddocument-wviewnormalwview-wzoom0wzoom-wdonotoptimizeforbrowser-wworddocument/
Food was tremendous, eating off the grill, seafood and fresh salad and bread. Was unaware that I love escargots by trying them for the first and second time on this trip. No motorbikes on the island, just horses, bicycles and your feet.
After that we spent 2 nights in Kuta. Differing opinions exist of this place. One of friends my friends loved it. A blogger I read thinks this:
http://www.wanderingearl.com/when-tourism-goes-terribly-wrong/
My thoughts are that it has classy shopping and restaurants, definitely very touristy with way too many people trying to sell you anything and everything. If their were less of them, it would be way better. Ate a delicious steak New Year's eve, amazing chicken wings that tasted like North America but they also made Arvid and I 20 minutes late to watching The Hobbit but still worth it. The Hobbit was cool by the way, just stoked to watch a movie on a big screen in English. People in Indonesia love fireworks. They are everywhere. People are strolling down the street, talking with their friend then BAMM BAMM BAMM a firework goes off near their feet and people laugh hysterically. It isn't dangerous, just loud and rude. A kid through one at us one night so I kicked it back at him, as it was going off near him he looked at me like "well played".


Not a fan of New Year's so my expectations were low. Turned out great. Amazing steak, hung out on the beach for 2 hours talking and watching more fireworks go off in the sky. Hugged and talked our way into a rooftop party where it overlooked all of Kuta, the crowds, the buildings and the fireworks. I was thinking as my mom would say "I am greatly blessed' Being around people you love trumps where you are almost every single time. Even if you are in an incredible place. People over places.
We headed out a few hours after midnight to catch our flight, all good on the way back discounting Chelsea getting her yoga mat puke on outside of the airport McDonald's and happy to get back into the swing of things in Thailand. Loved seeing my friends, taking a break from school and just laughing and joking for 12 days straight. Air Asia 1 Strawberry drink 1 Bert-100. TAKE THAT AIR ASIA!!  




“Success is doing what you want, where you want, when you want, with whom you want and as much as you want.” – Tony Robbins




Wednesday, January 2, 2013

2013!



Typing with one hand is a bit of a challenge so I will try and keep this short and concise. First, I really do appreciate anyone who reads what I write and staying updated with my life. I know I'm not great at posting consistently or great at describing things but I think doing this is fun and will try and improve my writing as one of my New Year's resolutions.

I will also do a separate Bali post but I had a amazing time, loved being around people I love and checking out a new place with no stress or schedules.

A quick review of what I wrote for last year's resolutions. 1- Stop comparing myself so much to others and accepting that people are way better at activities than I am and not taking it personally. I genuinely think I have gotten better at this part of my life and accepted it.

2- To live with more urgency and getting out of my comfort zone a bit more. I did less well on this one. Staying a second year wasn't getting out of my comfort zone and i didn't exactly approach Victoria Secret models in my spare time. I will work on not being as lazy/complacent is some aspects of my life this year like reading, exercising and making good long term choices and not just short term decisions.


2013 resolutions:
Staying out of the hospital
No sunburns
Eating fresh fruit four times a week while still in Thailand
Continue to write down everything I spend money on
Read a book for at least 30 minutes everyday
Find another incredible job in 2013 in or outside of Canada.

Lastly, sometimes I get off track and find it hard to have a sole purpose that guides me. I thought if I chose some qualities I want to emulate, it would help me in my everyday choices and interactions. I looked through a massive list and here are the ten I came up with. If you want to give it a shot, let me know how it goes: 
http://www.fiction-writers-mentor.com/list-of-character-traits.html

I wanted five but it was tough getting to ten. It was fun, challenging and insightful. If I am unsure about a situation, I'm hoping this list will give me some insight and remind me what type of person I'm trying to be.


Having Integrity

Rational

Honest

Confident

Hard working

Original

Adaptable

Passionate

Grateful

Generous

zlJ3E 30 Best Quotes in Pictures of the Week – May 26th to June 02nd, 2012



"The best way to predict the future is to create it.” 

– Peter Drucker