The Day Zero Project

I should be editing the final draft of my thesis right now, but I’m exploring the Day Zero site instead — and boy, is this inspirational procrastination at its finest!

The Day Zero Project began its life as a meme where people made lists of 101 things to accomplish in 1001 days. Unbeknownst to me until today, it’s now morphed into a growing social network with some really neat features, like the most popular 101 tasks, goals sorted by travel destination, featured theme lists and an idea finder.

Some favourite reading so far:

  • Organize a hide and seek with at least 20 friends in IKEA
  • Watch turtles enter the sea for the first time
  • Write a detailed zombie apocalypse plan
  • Tie a secret to a balloon and let it go
  • Photograph an endangered animal
  • Bake a Rubik’s Cube cake
  • Make a pie on Pi Day
  • Conquer my fear of grasshoppers
  • Make a chalk mural in the driveway
  • Entertain the elderly at a nursing home

My own Day Zero list is expiring at the end of this month, and what with my two jobs and the thesis keeping me crazy busy, I’m having more fun creating a new list for my post-graduation life than trying to complete the old one. Yes, all my thoughts are eagerly turned towards the next chapter and the excitement of the unknown. Anything might be possible!

Watch this space…

…for The Garden Statuary, Issue 1.2, coming out this Wednesday!

On April 2nd, you can find the new issue on The Garden Statuary website, the English undergraduate journal that publishes not only poetry, prose and English academic essays, but also artwork, photography, film and music.

Come join us at the Launch Party, too! There will be readings from our authors, music, free pizza and $2 libations, so bring photo ID, even if you aren’t planning on drinking. We’ll love to see you there!

TGS Launch Party
Wednesday, April 2nd (5-8 pm)
MASS, Buchanan D

A day off

Exactly eight weeks after my last day off and the day I succumbed to my Epic Illness of 2012 (thus far), I finally ran downtown with Little Friend Ber to give ourselves a day of fun.

If you’d bumped into me as I flew towards the bus, you’d probably have heard my excitement: Who cares if it’s raining right now? I’m freeeeeee!

I should probably explain that I just submitted the bulk of my graduating essay to my supervisor this week and am currently waiting for the latest review before I edit it to submit the “first” official draft. As in, I am actually happy with my progress at the moment and can see the end in sight. Oh, yeah.

But who’s in a homework mood on the first free day in two months? Now that I’m able to walk and talk and eat as much as I want again, what better way to celebrate than with copious amounts of chocolate?

Chocolate fondue, ice cream, fruits and pastries

Chocolate fondue for two at Capstone Fondue

Capstone Tea & Fondue is located downtown on Robson and Broughton, with a noticeable green-and-white logo hanging outside. LFB and I have wanted to try this place for almost three years, but only just got around to it, thanks to a nifty Groupon purchase we acquired a few months ago.

Capstone is immensely popular — the first time we tried to go, they were full up. This time, I reserved a table a week before for as soon as they opened (3 pm), and it was a good thing I did — not fifteen minutes after we arrived and sat down to order, the place was almost entirely full with a long line and growing.

The chocolate fondue was exactly what we wanted, with a nice selection of fruit (strawberries, pineapples, grapes, green apples and bananas), pastries (lemon loaf, banana loaf and some kind of cookie), and ice cream. The ice cream was a new, delightful experience for me, because I discovered that the chocolate actually does freeze around it.

Which obviously led us to play with our food:

Smiling ice cream

Look! The ice cream's smiling!

We are so grown up.

This should happen more often!

I was typing away at my desk in Buch C when suddenly, music broke out and a group of students in the courtyard started dancing in coordination.

The first flash mob I’ve seen!

It only lasted about a minute, but it certainly livened up the day. Anyone know what that was about?

[drumroll] It’s… National Co-op Week!

Did you know that there’s a National Co-op Week in Canada? I certainly didn’t until our Marketing Manager got us to dress in purple and carry “I ♥ Co-op” signs. You can now see our staff pictures whenever you walk by our office.

Co-op students, this is your chance to win a $200 Future Shop gift card by participating in daily social media challenges through Facebook, Twitter and/or LinkedIn. Visit for more details.

Arts Co-op students also get an additional chance to win more prizes for participating in the CAFCE challenges! Follow @UBCartscoop to find our winners. Talk about swag galore — those EA games sitting in our office are tempting me to get a new Facebook and/or Twitter account and break my almost year-long hiatus…

(And oh, okay, UBC Engineering and Sauder Co-op are also offering extra prizes if you belong to those.)

National Co-op Week

To kick-start National Co-op Week at UBC, all the UBC Co-op Programs came together in a half-day staff retreat on Monday to share and update one another on their experiences. Because the Arts Co-op staff are awesome, I got to tag along and help deliver our presentation. This was a tad nerve-racking, as it turned out I was the only student present, but I didn’t need to worry — my accent apparently helped to grab people’s attention.

British ninja.

The retreat was a great opportunity to hear and learn more from one another. Co-op programs at UBC range from a whopping 1000+ placements a year for Engineering and Science to medium- and smaller-sized programs like Arts, Commerce, Forestry and Kinesiology. Students have very different knowledge and skills to offer, which means each program has to tailor to them — and each program does do it, very successfully (if we go by sheer placement numbers and student survey responses).

What I gleaned from this session:

  • The staff in every program are incredibly committed to the value of co-operative education.
  • Engineering co-op is BIIIG.
  • The mountain pine beetle is a devastating little creature.

Just look at how red these trees are! (Every red tree is an infected pine.) All because of these beetles.

Picture courtesy of Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources Operations, Government of BC

Oh yes, that is one of the things I learned while listening to the crash course in challenges facing the forestry industry and forestry education. It’s events like these I get most excited about, when I get the chance to connect with people of different backgrounds and specialisations, and we get to find out what one another deals with on a daily basis.

And then I get to go back to our own office and think about how to adapt what other people have come up with to best suit our own students. Connection and specialisation. This work rocks.