Wednesday, March 21, 2007

This can't be good

Although I wasn't entirely sure whether or not the original version of Across the Universe would be amazing or awful, this can't be good news.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Frugality Breakthrough

I sat down a couple of days ago to mull my financial situation and discovered I was fastly driving myself into bankruptcy. Yes, I have a budget, and yes, I stick to it. But I haven't been forecasting future payables so well ... things like first and last month's rent, moving to toronto, ridiculously expensive CA courses, and of course all those trips has really added up. So I've entered what really feels like a new age. Paleozoic > Mesozoic > Cenozoic > FRUGALITY. I've decided to try and not spend any money (beyond bills and groceries). Obviously this isn't completely achievable, but I figure if this is the goal then I'll still be doing pretty well, even considering the occasional take out or whatnot. I went to the mall today to buy 4 gifts for some up-coming birthdays and managed to spend 2 hours in Masonville and 30 mins in Futureshop without purchasing anything other than said gifts, of which I only exceeded my "gift" budget by $10 or so.

I even considered getting rid of my cell phone, but decided that would be slightly too sketchy as I don't even have a land line. What if someone important (like Deloitte or FedEx needs to reach me), or what if I have to fill out some kind of application where phone number is one of those starred fields? So I decided to just be really careful about my minutes so I don't get any extra charges.

I decided I pretty much couldn't live without my PVR or high speed internet, but that I certainly don't need any new clothes, lunches at school, dinners out, etc. I also did some more apartment hunting and found that my standards are much lower now!

Finally, I reworked my Europe budget and found that if I control my day-to-day budget quite well that I can save up to $4,000. Without sleeping in parks! Here it is:

(per day, in Euros, 1.5 CND exchange rate)

Accomodations - 25
Food - 20
Inter-City Transportation (metro, buses, bike rentals) - 10
Admissions - 10
TOTAL = 65

So here's to the dawn of a new age in my budgeting process. Time to file my taxes.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Oscars 2007

I took a break from the nightly Mexican routine of my peers to watch the Oscars last Sunday. Thankfully it wasn't in Spanish. Some brief thoughts:

- Though not particularly funny, I enjoyed Ellen's relaxed attitude as a host. None of her jokes fell totally flat, she wasn't awkward (except maybe when vaccuuming, what was up with that?), and her style left the focus on the ceremony, which I thought was nice for a change.
- I liked the 4+ hour length, unlike most. It's never too long for me!
- Enjoyed the dance troupe, and still can't figure out how they made some of those images.
- Too many tribute montages! Did we really need the ones about America and writers?
- Acting awards were as expected, with the exception of Alan Arkin over Eddie Murphy --- although most of the major TV affiliates were predicting that the tide had shifted after Norbit.
- I should have made predictions this year because I think I would have done pretty well! Alas.
- Really quite happy with all of the outcomes: LMS getting some screenplay love, Inconvenient Truth documentary and (strangely) song, Pan's Labyrinth getting everything except Best Foreign Film (CNN coverage illuminated this a little --- apparently this category is one that in order to vote for you must have screened all 5 nominees, something that only 200 voters do - compared to the 5,800 that regularly vote in the other categories).
- Yayyyyyy for The Departed.

All in all, my most personally satisfying Oscars in years!


Still alive.