Friday, December 29, 2006
But, as much as the guy was friendly and he only asked 280 CAN per month, the lack of furniture in the room gave me the illustrative experience that I was talking about before. I agree that a cold floor and an empty room is better than nothing but I wanted to try my luck before taking on them. The next day I changed my search to the more obvious strategy of looking at recently posted advertisements. Fortunately, I had a couple of places more to visit and the question was again "how to decide which option?"
At the end I discovered that there was a simple answer to that question. I have noticed that the prices of a comfortable accommodation were fluctuating between 400 and 600 CAN dollars, including or not including bills and services depending
on the case. (That of course, without having to share with more than one person the house or apartment.) The focus of my decision was more in where and with who I was going to live with. Therefore, I can summarize now my experience of finding accommodation in Edmonton in the following way: all depended in how comfortable I felt when I visited the place I am living now in.
Yes, it is a basement suit, but under a Yoga-Buddhist-Christian centre. =) More about this, later.
Have you ever lived in a basement? There are from places to places and from basements to basements to be fare, but at the beginning of my search I have discarded basements as I regarded them as "perhaps" too cold, too depressive. (Some pictures that I saw gave me that prejudice =) However, as the options were narrowing and the days passing, I was opening my mind. "Perhaps starting without furniture is not too bad" "Basement? Well, judging by the amount of advertised basements I suppose they are not that cold" and so.
In this context, in one of those -30 C nights I got a room to visit, a room in a basement to be more precise. I had a look at the map, and started my first walk in the city, in the parts outside of my up to now known range (the hotel is besides the Uni). Well, I never got to the place.
This story will continue...
I was in the other extreme. Overcautious as I read that I should be I dressed with 5 layers in my upper body, two in the head and two in my lower body. That didn't make me the most agile person when carrying my luggage but I found out that it is not as bad as I was expecting and the experienced re-enforced the need of buying proper clothing . Same thing that I did with the help of my new supervisor on the next day.
With the hotel paid by my employer, I only had to have a hot bath and rest in the bed. My condition was: a rare combination of mental and physical tiredness and boredom, all together. Not surprising after all and after having a day spent in three different planes and airports, three different countries, and one use of what it seems an advantage of the NAFTA or North America (that means Canada, USA and Mexico believe it or not ;-) Free Trade Agreement.
The morning was waiting for me with what my not very experienced life found a mesmerizing view...
Thursday, November 16, 2006
I remember, in a night of drunkenness, coming back to the office and writing an email to my father.
I actually don't remember what I wrote. I remember that he never replied to it. It was quite a jolly one!
Today I am not that drunk, but happy enough to write these lines. Approximately one week before I depart to Canada and happy to have been celebrating that N passed her viva (or PhD examination).
That is gurt lush!, init me lover?
Tuesday, September 26, 2006
I was looking at my folder where my Google mail automatically sends
the spam. One common trick called my attention. This was just looking
at the sender and the one line with the beginning of the message that
the list of spam messages shows. I don't usually open spam messages =)
The sender is the name of someone, someone who can be anybody. The
beginning of the message starts saying "Following what we were
talking...", "In reply to your question...", "Hi buddy!". Obviously
they want to look familiar to you.
But then I was asking myself. Why do the spam senders think that this
strategy would work? How on earth do they think that I am going to
open a message from someone that I don't know or don't have a clue of
who they are. My pessimistic and prejudiced point of view gave me a
picture of the answer.
We are encouraged to do "networking", ultimately to get email
addresses from strangers from whatever party, dinner or meeting we go
to. The race is to have as many "friends" as possible. Your number of
acquaintances is a measure of your popularity and your social success.
Well, at least in appearance. Now let's add to this the growing
availability of services and products to buy in Internet. I see then
the gold mine of spammers. The more tangential your relationships are
with people and the more consumerism is in your life the less you know
who is writing you and who send you something worth to read. Of
course, I have to admit that some spam messages are clever than
others. For example those who wants to attract my attention with real
concerns such as... mmm... such as how to enlarge... my financial
Fortunately and at the end of the day that is only my blurred vision
of the world. The spam detector makes most of job identifying the
undesirable mail and leaves me with the only task of having some
amusement reading lists of messages. That just before clicking the
"delete all" button.
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
The novel 2010 by Arthur C. Clarke conciliated my trust in the scientific theories of the origin of the universe and life as we know it with my idea of God.
Did Jesus (Isa or Yuz Asaf for Muslims) die in the cross? Gautama Buddha was born around 563 BC. Some people think that Jesus went to India, became a Buddhist and came back to preach in Levant, more precisely in Galilee and Perea. Some other people think that he survived the crucifixion and fled to Afghanistan, Iran and/or Kashmir. Roza Bal is then alleged to be the final tomb of Jesus.
Whatever is the true, something that we know today is that Hezbollah and Israel found themselves fighting in the same land where Jesus was preaching love nearly 2000 years ago.Yesterday I found myself in a Buddhist centre doing a meditation where we were asked to wish well, in a loving and compassioned way, to three people, someone we love, someone who si only an acquaintance and someone we hate.
Look at Europa, "it has been suggested that life may exist" in an ocean under its ice surface. But even if this is proven to be true, it will not be anything compared to what we have at "home". Shame on us.
Saturday, August 05, 2006
Then after some years another paper said that I have some mastering of physical chemistry. That was the time of searching my soul.
Now, I have finally submitted my PhD thesis!
That takes me closer to be called a Dr. and I am living a time of creativity.
Saturday, July 15, 2006
"When following this type of training we combat the tendency of running blindly after objects of attachment, and thereby falling victim to pain and disappointment, by teaching ourselves to focus on those aspects of the object that will reduce our desire for it. For instance, we can neutralize our longing for a beautiful person by concentrating on the unclean parts of his or her body... =)
"Compared to a system like tantra, which actually uses the energy of desire, this cautious approach to the spiritual path is considered inferior. But this is not to say that such an approach has no value...
"Tantra's approach is very different. Instead of viewing pleasure and desire as something to be avoided at all costs, tantra recognizes the powerful energy aroused by our desires to be an indispensable resource for the spiritual path. Because the goal is nothing less than the realization of our highest human potential, tantra seeks to transform every experience - no matter how "unreligious " it may appear- into the path of fulfillment. It is precisely because our present life is so inseparably linked with desire that we must make use of desire's tremendous energy if we wish to transform our life into something trascendental.
"Thus the logic of tantra is really very simple: our experience of ordinary pleasure can be used as the resource for attaining the supremely pleasurable experience of totality, or enlightenment... According to tantra, we cannot hope to attain our goal of universal and complete happiness by systematically making ourselves more and more miserable. This is contrary to the way things actually work. It is only by cultivating small experiences of calm and satisfaction now that we will be able to achieve our ultimate goal of peace and tranquility in the future. And similarly, it is only through the skillful use of desirous energy and by building up the habit of experiencing what we might call true pleasure that we can hope to achieve the everlasting bliss and joy of full illumination."
Saturday, July 01, 2006
... that part of the perfection consists also in believing in monogamy =)
You're 92% Poly =) 96% tolerant of the poly lifestyle =) (But... you're 1% just in it for the sex =))
Ooooooohhhh AaaaaaaaahhhhhhYou're poly.
You're tolerant of poly lifestyle. (Good for you you like yourself!)
You're not just here for the sex.
And you won't lie to your mate.
I *Like* YOU.
Congratualtions on being a pretty good person =)
Oh - just so you don't go off wondering - the first question? the one about monogamous cultures? the answer is 16% of recorded cultures have been monogamous - 84% have been non monogamous! how about that? =)
This test tracked 4 variables.
You scored higher than 93% on True Poly
You scored higher than 92% on Tolerance
You scored higher than 1% on Sex Only
You scored higher than 25% on Honesty
Monday, June 05, 2006
Robert Capa is best known for his picture of the "Falling soldier". On June the 6th 1944 (D-Day), he was the only photographer in Omaha Beach and his pictures are the only graphic testimony left of the first moments of the invasion. He died on May the 25th 1954 steping on a mine while covering the French Indochina war. He took his last pictures seconds before.
Saturday, June 03, 2006
Friday, June 02, 2006
"Born in Lochgelly in Fife, Lee became the youngest ever woman elected to Westminster in 1929 when she won the north Lanark by-election for labour. An ardent supporter of the Soviet Union and energetic campaigner, Lee stood in Bristol Central in 1943 as an independent candidate in support of a two-front war. She lost the election to the government's candidate, Lady Viola Apsley, whose pro-Churchill campaign was described by the press as 'a monument of decorum'".
Saturday, May 13, 2006
The element chromium (Cr) has two well know faces... but two "personalities":
"Chromium (III) is an essential nutrient that helps the body use sugar, protein, and fat. Cr (III) is a very stable oxidation state for chromium. In this state, the chrome is labile and kinetically very slow to react or form complexes. It is not a strong oxidiser and the human's natural body acidity is enough for the chrome to keep to this Cr (III) state. (reference)"
"Breathing high levels of chromium (VI) can cause irritation to the nose, such as runny nose, nosebleeds, and ulcers and holes in the nasal septum. Ingesting large amounts of chromium (VI) can cause stomach upsets and ulcers, convulsions, kidney and liver damage, and even death.""The main reason why Cr (VI) is so toxic is that one of the reduction products of Cr (VI) is Cr (V). Chrome (V) is a known carcinogen and will lodge in any tissue to form cancerous growths. There are reports that chromium (V) is also a factor leading to premature senility in parts of Russia."
"In the body, the acidity and action of enzymes on Cr (VI) will promote the formation in small quantities of Cr (V). However, as the size of this is normally too large to be adopted by a tissue, the Cr (V) will pass out. The only place where the Cr (V) is likely to lodge is in some of the fine capillaries in either the kidneys, intestines or lungs.""One of the most well known cases of how Cr (VI) impacts the human body is depicted in the movie blockbuster Erin Brockovich. This true story involved a controversial lawsuit against the world’s largest utility, Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) as a direct result of a massive communications effort mounted by Ms Erin Brockovich."
How likely is chromium to cause cancer?
"Several studies have shown that chromium (VI) compounds can increase the risk of lung cancer. Animal studies have also shown an increased risk of cancer. The World Health Organization (WHO) has determined that chromium (VI) is a human carcinogen. The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has determined that certain chromium (VI) compounds are known to cause cancer in humans. The EPA has determined that chromium (VI) in air is a human carcinogen."
Source: Corrosion Doctors
Wednesday, May 03, 2006
Tuesday, May 02, 2006
I am passing for the worst moment of my thesis writing up. I have more than 60% but the rest of it is being a hard one. I wanted to hand in a complete draft to my supervisor at the end of April and guess what?
The reason for the delay is the usual one in my life :-) My stubbornness in not finishing this PhD if it is not with the satisfaction of having completed some “tasks”. You will see, I am more curious than a cat and this life offers me a load of pretty questions, interesting facts and things to do. Science, my work, is just another part of my life that offers endless questions. Yes, I have learned that I cannot have all the answers…but I am very tempted to…ha, ha!!
How can I solve this problem? I know how. It’s easy. I just have to remember… Time is finite!... and the moon is waiting for me.
"We choose to go to the Moon! We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and our skills ... we do not know what benefits await us ... [but] space is there and we are going to climb it." JFK, 1962
Thursday, April 13, 2006
Teflon is a great substance, though some claim that releases the toxic perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) which is a substance used to make Teflon. The most common use of Teflon is in non-stick coating.
Well, today I feel like I am not fluid and I have a teflon coat on my heart.
That's why I am listening again and again this song. To remind myself that there are better days :-D
Friday, April 07, 2006
Also today, but 4,500 million years ago, there was some earth where to put our feet on.
Not forgetting that 4,000 million years ago there was enough water as to call it "Water of life"
Saturday, February 18, 2006
"—En primer lugar, me parece un error fatal que tomes las cosas tan en serio —dijo al tomar asiento junto a mí—. Hay tres clases de malos hábitos que usamos una y otra vez al enfrentarnos con situaciones fuera de lo común en esta vida.
"Primero: podemos no hacer caso de lo que está ocurriendo o ha ocurrido, y sentir como si nunca hubiera pasado. Ese es el camino del santurrón.
"Segundo: podemos aceptar todo tal como se presenta y sentir como si supiéramos qué es lo que está pasando. Ése es el camino de los devotos.
"Tercero: podemos obsesionarnos con un suceso porque no podemos descartarlo o porque no podemos aceptarlo de todo corazón. Ése es el camino del tonto ¿Tu camino?
"Hay un cuarto camino...actúa como si nunca hubiera pasado nada, porque no cree en nada, pero acepta todo tal como se presenta. Acepta sin aceptar y descarta sin descartar. Nunca siente como si supiera, ni tampoco siente como si nada hubiera pasado. Actúa como si tuviera el control, aunque esté temblando de miedo. Actuar en esa forma disipa la obsesión."
Relatos de poder. C. Castaneda
Sunday, January 29, 2006
For me this means that the most enjoyable part about love is the everyday life. When I transform myself to be a better partner, when I do something to improve myself and then the relationship I am living the best part of love.
And I think this is true either when you have a partner or you don't. I believe that, if I am expecting to find one day the right woman for me, I have to be prepare for that. So I am preparing now to be the right man. And that for me is love, for me and for my future partner.
As I told her, her own journey, of which she has left a record on her diary, is a proof of love, no matter the end, the destination.
Saturday (Fun day)
Go caving and know the country! Yeah! But be sure that somebody reserved a place for you in one of the cars. Ogof Ffynnon Ddu (OFD) cave has a welsh meaning in its name, maybe different to its meaning in my impressed mind: an amusement park. And again with the perfect guide for a pleasant trip according to our kid’s curiosity (L, L and me) This cave has muggy passages where, if like me you don’t use gloves, your hands could become pottery with little warm. You will be happy in its long tunnels for run, run, and run and run…and fall in the stream underneath if the guide doesn’t stop you.
There I also had my first post-caving enjoyment because there’s no better place for share your cave impressions that a warm pub for put you fast in the best alcoholic mood. I also learned what sleeping in a hut means but the future deserved me more surprises.
Sunday (Work day)
I joined the Tim’s video maker team along with L, T and E. Following a different trip and comparing with that the day before I felt like visiting the roof of the amusement park, ending the trip with the filming of a rescue practice (some caves are crowded). Of course, the presence of all those rescuers couldn’t be ignored and T, E and I decided to make a fast visit to the stream, flowing with the water, running along those black walls made of razor blades up to a fabulous water fall. There I learned other lesson. Why shoulders were made for in a cave. Thanks T!
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
According to David Gordon, co-editor and Professor of Social Justice at Bristol University: "The only way to end poverty within a generation would be to embark on a serious policy of redistribution. At the beginning of the 21st century, the UK is one of the most unequal societies in Europe. In order to reduce poverty and social exclusion the Government needs to reverse this redistribution to the rich, and, at a minimum, return to the levels of inequality in income and power that existed in the mid-1970s. This would see poverty and social exclusion reduced by at least half."
La 69.G (apologies...but for a version in other languages of this post try the translation bar above)
?Que cual es mi interpretacion de la cancion "La 69.G" de Sabina?
Pues bien Juan, asumiendo que la connotacion sexual de 69 y punto G no te son ajenas dejame preguntarte, ?cual es tu estacion de radio favorita? En Mexico, durante muchos anyos me desperte escuchando Monitor, cuando estaba en Radio Red FM 88.1. O recuerdo a la estacion Alfa 91.3...
Asi para mi, La 69.G de Sabina es esa "estacion de radio", pero aun mas, ese lugar, esa frecuencia, esos cuates, esos compas, ese momento para relajarse y pasarsela bien.
Sabina es un buenazo para las metaforas y para describir la vida cotidiana. ?Alguna vez has buscado refugio en la almohada y esta te ha dado la espalda? ?Donde buscas refugio cuando te cansas de crecer, cuando los problemas y retos de la vida cotidiana te acosan, cuando los suenyos tardan en venir?
Para algunos es la television...para Sabina es la 69.G.
En Mexico ha sucedido que una cantina, un bar toma el nombre de "La oficina". Uno tiene que recordar esto cuando las estadisticas nos dicen que la gente pasa mas tiempo en su trabajo que en la casa :)
Por eso Juan, y por Sabina, escogi ese nombre para este lugar. Asi que bienvenido, pasale, ponte a gusto y gracias por haber firmado el libro de visitas.
Then I thought of my friend and his one or two hours per day in the gym. I wondered "how could he do it" Then I remembered his boyfriend...
Back in Mexico, when I was a kid, I liked one of my neighbours, a pretty but dull girl. I started doing exercise with my mates. It was the age of the challenges and there was an even more powerful motivation: to get the love of someone.
:) Tricky thing to find the motivation to love oneself eh!..
(unless your name is Gargola! ;)
Wednesday, January 11, 2006
“According to the accepted definition of teaching in animal behaviour, an individual is a teacher if it modifies its behaviour in the presence of a naïve observer, at some initial cost to itself, in order to set an example so that the other individual can learn more quickly.
‘…true teaching always involves feedback in both directions between the teacher and the pupil. In other words, the teacher provides information or guidance for the pupil at a rate suited to the pupil’s abilities, and the pupil signals to the teacher when parts of the ‘lesson’ have been assimilated and that the lesson may continue.’
“Tandem running in Temnothorax ants meets all these criteria and thus qualifies as teaching.
“…the process is highly intermittent because the follower is dictating the speed of the lesson by stopping frequently to consolidate its growing knowledge of the path that it has taken.
“Tandem leaders pay a cost because they would normally have reached the food around four times faster if not hampered by a follower. But the benefit is that the follower learns where the food is much quicker than it would have done independently. Tandem followers learn their lessons so well that they often become tandem leaders and in this way time-saving information flows through the ant colony.”
Sunday, January 08, 2006
The Red Cross nurse who inspired Sir Bob Geldof’s Live Aid
"Behind every war, every refugee camp, every famine are the invisible working people no one sees. Not the journalists, who get all the attention, but the nurses, the doctors, the logisticians necessary to try to end the agony of masses of people who were simply born in the wrong place and the wrong time. It was Claire Bertschinger, a nurse for the ICRC, who brought the world's attention to the starvation in Ethiopia, to the men, women and children who were dying in droves at her feeding centre in Mekele. If not for her, there would be no BBC cameras, no Live Aid, no Bob Geldof, and no outpouring of compassion and comraderie that restored one's faith in humanity, if only for a few minutes. Bertschinger's courage is matched only by her conviction; her tireless effort to comfort the hungry and dying is a beautiful story that needed to be told, and more importantly, needs to be read." (Janine di Giovanni)
To know more about her you can see the BBC interview or read her book “Moving mountains”
Thursday, January 05, 2006
As a review says:
“The Ogreling” tells the troubling tale of a six-year-old ogre who lives alone in the forest with his mother. Under her doting care, he is oblivious to his cruel heritage as the son of an ogre until he starts school, where the sleeping monster within him awakens and hungers for flesh and blood –especially that of young children! The ogreling decides to confront his inner demons by undergoing three tests, the outcome of which will seal his fate as either boy or beast. The author Suzanne Lebeau explores the permanent battle between the forces of good and evil which inhabits everyone throughout this story, for after all, ogres may not only exist in children’s tales…
In the above-mentioned post, Mariana points out what seems to be the comment of Susana Lebeau, that: “Children are interested about the evil represented in the adults and the evil that exist on themselves. That is something that they understand by themselves. It is the adults who feel themselves perturbed and fear the crude stories of the imperfection of the world.” I understand this as a critic to the overprotection that the adults have on children, moved by their own fears, without realizing that children understand and are curious about it.
If children understand in some degree the evil in the adult world then, are those “naughty”, “bad behaved” and “hell” children only the reflection of what their parents are, but without the control of the conscience and the adult rules that the later have?
With the showing in the media of the abuse to children, may it be that the modern parents develop a fear to the interaction with their children? This may be especially in “developed” countries where a possible traditional role of the family seems to transform quicker nowadays.
Monday, January 02, 2006
Mendip Hills, my first caving in the UK and it was strange, no need of single rope technique (SRT), just helmet, light, suits and wellies. The game that I played: be swallowed by a lobster and, like Jonas in the Bible, escape from its dark interior. Fortunately for that “hell” I had the best Dante’s Virgil personified in the couple R-E. Extra points: As the co-pilot of captain T I had a taste of that other maze that takes you throw Cheddar, Wells, Petty and our hut with the excitement of be travelling in a tight one-line-road-for-two-cars or in the “wrong” side of the road (Shit...what’s doing in the right line that car approaching!!!..oh!, I see, we’re in the left)
Where are we going today....? Find your place using this interactive map
Places in Edmonton
- Muttart Conservatory
- International Airport
- Princess Theatre
- Garneau Theatre
- Whyte Ave.