Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Can I get in here? I'm sort of like, a paid journalist!

Today I can cash my first journalism paycheque.
I’m inspired by every second banner ad on the internet that has someone showing off a big cheque, so today I decided it would be fun to show you all how much I made on my first paid journalism job. You know, really contrast the successful people online with details of my terrible income.

My first journalism job was for the U of M Bisons. I covered a men’s volleyball game at the Investors Group Athletic Centre for the university’s website, which included writing a game summary and notifying other news sources of the scores. For this little piece of freelance, you’re paid hourly. Or something. In any case you work until you’re done, then a few weeks later you get a little cheque. Aw how sweet!

Immediately after this experience I was quoted saying that journalism just seemed like being paid very little to go watch an event you couldn’t enjoy, and I stand by that. For example, midway through the game I finally noticed a friend in the audience across from me (because I had a special seat with the stats people of course). Who knows how long she was waving before I noticed, because I was so immersed in the action! It wasn’t a result of my playoff excitement, rather just me trying to be thorough with diligent note taking. And instead of thinking:

I was thinking: 

Now that’s just impolite.

I will admit it was a little bit cool calling those stations and papers, real household names like the Sun and CTV maybe. I felt like I was really breaking a big story for them, like I should be talking on a wind up phone wearing one of those old reporter hats sitting in front of my typewriter. “I’m gonna blow this story wide open, see? Manitoba Bisons won their game, see? Stop the presses, here are the scores, see?” Maybe I have a cigarette, if not I can live with it. You get the idea.

It was fun, except those guys answering the sports line at 10:30 on a Friday night aren’t really enjoying themselves, and it really shows in their phone conduct. CJOB unexpectedly just hung up on me for a minute, and then was annoyed when I asked if he was ready. It’s not like I’m on the air here fella, take a second out from your busy weekend of squinting through a dimly lit basement radio studio to give me the time of day!

So was all this worth it? 45 minutes driving to and from U of M, a 3 plus hour game, for $31.50 a month later? I honestly don’t know, and it probably says more about how desperate I am. Any comments Journalism majors?

Alright fine, I know you're dying to see it. Here's a link to over thirty dollars worth of words!

Friday, March 18, 2011

This baby’s third degree hot.

Last night I tried Smitty’s hottest wings, Third Degree.




Usually I’m more of a hot ranch, hot, sweet chili, electric honey, or lemon pepper wing kind of guy, but I decided to step it up to see how I’d do against a spicy challenge.

Now let me be clear, I can take a bit of spice. I’m not a Norwegian who finds a warm bun spicy, and a pizza bun unbearable. The Portuguese in me allows to me find the joy in dishes with the little pictures of red peppers beside them on the Chinese take out menus. Man this blog is getting cultured!

Ok so anyways I went up a few leagues to the hottest, and found that I was actually pretty comfortable with it! I mean yeah I got a basket of sweet chili as well to balance it out, but I was totally able to eat the Third Degree comfortably without freaking out. Although it was St. Patrick’s Day… so I sort stuck out, being the only one who wasn’t freaking out.

So my question is: where are the wings that make you gasp and fill your mouth with napkins because the water is only making things worse and your tonsils just lit on fire? Let me know if anyone has some advice on this, maybe my next new thing can be reconstructive oral surgery.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Have you seen THIS incredible new thing?

Today I tell you about The Upper Cruster.
TUC is a new blog that I’ve discovered, and they have a print magazine in the works that will be released on March 31. I don’t think I’m overstating this: it’s the greatest magazine ever. I stumbled upon this site while looking for information on grooming a racehorse if your stable boy has called in sick and your backup stable boy has been hit by one of those double-decker novelty tour buses and was pronounced dead on the scene and you have a race the next day. I was just looking purely for harmless interest’s sake, and was delighted to find this magazine.

Looks like TUC will offer some kind of amazing lifestyle guide for Canada’s wealthiest people, with info on pressing matters like travel, current events, fashion and accessories, recreation without perspiring, philanthropy, religions with membership fees, and what to do with unsightly homeless people. I can’t wait to read it.

And I’m totally straight and everything, but isn’t that Charles writer guy totally hot? Breathtaking.

Check out TUC’s blog here and become a fan on Facebook here. You are welcome. 

Friday, March 4, 2011

Snowcastles in the Snow

Today I went to Birds Hill Provincial Park… in the winter.
I love going to the beach, and Birds Hill has always been my go to spot. It's super close, has good sand and volleyball courts. But I had never been to the park at this time of year before, and was very impressed by what it has going on in the winter.

I headed out today with classmates Krystalle and Alex for our travel assignment (covering a place outside of Winnipeg for both journalism and advertising class). Boy did we make a day of it! We explored the park, talked to some of their staff about all they offer, checked out the ranch where the horses and sleigh rides are, walked part of a trail, ate at the Pineridge Hollow restaurant, and shopped around its store as well, which may be the cutest in Manitoba. I didn’t even know I was capable of finding stores “cute”! Maybe it was all the stuffed sock monkeys.

Birds Hill is awesome, and another highlight is that so much of it is free. This space is a great resource to have, especially so close to Winnipeg, so if you’re into walking, nature and wildlife, jogging, exploring, walking your dog, getting fresh air, riding horses or sleighs, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, dog sledding, kick sledding, learning about nature from experienced interpreters, or building quinzees, you should definitely check this park out.

Just because it’s not summer doesn’t mean you can’t have fun in the park- come on, give it a try.

Start by checking out the park’s website here. Stay warm children.