Sunday, February 28, 2010


I'm at work, so I can't watch the BIGGEST GAME EVER (Canada Vs. the US for Olympic gold...) This is crushing, and I have contemplated quitting my job just so that I could get home in time to watch the game. Stupid rent and bills.

My heart is broken, but still filled with Canadian pride.


Thursday, February 25, 2010

C: The campaign trail...

With the help of some of my CreComm friends, I have started a campaign trail of self-promotion; the 'Vote for Shelley Cook' campaign is in full force, with a Facebook page, and a Twitter hashtag (#VoteforCook.) We're also considering posters, a campaign video, and perhaps t-shirts and media interviews.

Who knows, the sky really is the limit on this one.

You might be wondering why, and that my friends, is a very good question.

Well, I've started this campaign because I want to be Homecoming Queen. (Well, that's my first goal anyway, after that we'll see what happens...)

I'm serious; bring on the taffeta dress, the sash and the tiara, I'm ready!

I suppose the biggest obstacle to overcome in my campaign right now is the fact that there actually isn't a Homecoming Queen at Red River College. But I don't care, I won't let that stop me.

You see, I grew up in the 80's, watching shows like 'The Facts of Life,' and 'Family Ties.' I idolized the pretty characters of these shows, and as a result, I was a little girl with a big dream of becoming a cheerleader and the Homecoming Queen who dated the quarterback of the football team, just like they did. (For most little girls in the 80's, that was the dream.)

I really thought it was going to happen, it was only a matter of time.

And then, one cold Winnipeg day, I realized that my dream of being a cheerleader and the Homecoming queen was shattered when it dawned on me that I was a chubby Indian kid from Winnipeg, Manitoba; a place where Homecoming queens didn't exist, especially for chubby little Indian kids. (Not trying to play the 'race card,' but the 80's was a time of blond-haired, blue-eyed babes...That was NEVER going to be me!)

It was crushing.

Fast forward to high school, where I was (still) the chubby kid who didn't fit in; those were some of the most brutal years of my life, because I floated through the system with an undiagnosed case of ADHD, so I dropped out. (Arrgh!)

Hence, no formal grad!

Now that I'm 30, and I've accomplished many of my dreams in the last three years, I've decided to add this (The homecoming dream) to my bucket list. So, even though there is no such thing, I still want to win!

(After that, I might want to take on the Onion Ring who beat Justin Beiber and Miley Cirus on Facebook.)

So friends, I admit I'm kinda crazy, but let me have this...VOTE FOR ME!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A typical Cook sister phone call...

Baby Shelley & Baby Heather

*Ring, ring, ring*

Shelley: Hello?

Heather: What are you doing?

Shelley: I'm at Safeway. What are you doing?

Heather: Nothing. K, I'll let you go. Bye

Shelley: Bye


(P.S This happens like 87 times a night.)

The best days of our lives...

Reading week has been utterly refreshing! I am about to head out of my apartment, and join the Y. I can't wait to get on that treadmill! (Seriously folks, I am listening to Eye of the Tiger as I write this...)

This morning I had to head down to the Canadian Dimension in the Exchange District and put in a few hours of "interning." As luck would have it, I ran into one of my favourite people in CreComm; Andrew Kress. We had a little coffee date at Mondragon, and it was awesome. (I know that its only been a couple of days, but I have grown accustomed to seeing my CCBFF ("CreComm Best Friends Forever" as Duncan puts it) every day, so not seeing my CCBFF's over the course of these couple of days has really put me into withdrawal!)

That being said, these much needed days off are still a godsend!

There is so much truth in the term "CreComm Mafia," we've all grown so close and developed wicked friendships during the short time that we've been in this program. These are the best days of our lives folks; one day we'll look back and long for the intense days of CreComm.

It's hard to imagine that under all of this stress, and all of this pressure, that we are actually experiencing the best days of our lives; but we are. In such a cut-throat industry, here we all are, working our asses off to achieve our dreams, and the the most remarkable part is that we are helping one another do that. It's hard to explain, but even though this program, and the "industry" that we are all trying to be a part of, is extremely competitive, we all do our damnedest to help each other, and not to let anyone fail. If any of us need help, there is someone who is willing to give it. It's astounding.

Ugh, I'm getting all mushy here. But, in my defence the last couple of days has enabled me to recharge my batteries, and realize that I am so lucky to be where I am with the people that are there with me.

I love you CreComm!

That being said, it's time for me to go to Y before I get to sentimental and start writing love letters to all of my classmates!

Tata for now.

Oh, and as an added bonus, here's an awesome video that Jeff Ward made of the CreComm Bachelor/Bachelorette Auction (I get serious around the five minute mark...)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A Night with Friends...

Here is the poster for the fundraiser at the Joseph Beeper Spence Youth Drop-in Centre on Saturday, March 27th. (It's a small image, so go here for details.) I am selling tickets for $10, and they will also be at the door.

There will be awesome entertainment: Musicians Billy Joe Green, Troy "Little Hawk" Westwood and Wab Kinew, and Aboriginal comedian Don Burnstick (It's okay non-Aboriginals, you can come and laugh at his jokes. He's hilarious!) There will also be many, many more entertainers and performances.

As well, there will be a silent auction. Some of the prizes are a digital camera, an Aboriginal star blanket, bedding, art, an ipod, an more...

If you can't come to the event, buy a ticket anyway; your ticket will go to someone in the community who can't afford to go! (How awesome is that!?)

Leave me a message, and I will get you your tickets! Also, if you have a prize that you would like to donate, let me know!!



It's reading week!

So far I haven't done a lot, and it's been great! I did however catch up on some much needed sleep, and I cleaned and organized my apartment. Oh, and I've watched a lot of Olympics.

I can't believe how refreshing it has been to have two days of nothing; it feels weird, but good.

Today I did something out of the norm; I signed up for kick-boxing classes. My friend Maya encouraged me to join with her, and since I have always wanted to try kickboxing, I figured I may as well give it a shot. I'm nervous. But, I need to become more active, because my busy routine has been unforgiving and the weight gain that I have experienced is unhealthy, unflattering and extremely uncomfortable. Plus, it will be neat to try something new.

Ahh well, I really have nothing to blog about right now (But, I didn't want this week to lag in posts...) Hopefully I'll have something more interesting to write in the upcoming days...

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Beeper's Mom (Nancy Flett)

Nancy looks at a board with clippings of her son. (Larger image clippings on the previous post. With consent from Nancy.)

I met with Nancy Flett again today. We met to discuss the upcoming 'A night with Friends Variety Show' fundraiser that I am helping her put on for the Joseph Beeper Spence Youth Drop-in Centre.

The centre is in dire need of funding, and the threat of it shutting its doors is very real.

I am so frustrated; another inner city drop-in is on the cusp of demise, and unless it can find the appropriate level of funding, there is very little that anybody can do to save it. That being said, I am not letting this happen without a fight; I will go down kicking and screaming.

I didn't grow up in the north end, I didn't use the drop-in when I was a kid, or know anybody who did for that matter. Other than knowing Nancy, and feeling a connection to her's and Beeper's story, I have no real tie to the centre at all.

Nancy is a true warrior. Today she recanted the story about the night that her little boy died. As she sat in her office chair, she got that far off look in her eyes, and she told me about how she went to the hospital that night. She said that she all she remembers of first walking into the hospital was finding a trail of blood in the hallway. She said that her head was spinning, and she was pleading with the doctors to save Beeper's life, and when they couldn't, she said she remembers going into the room where he was, and seeing her baby lying on a stretcher, bloody and with tubes hanging out of him. She said she held him, crying and begging him to open his big brown eyes.

It was truly one of the saddest things I have ever seen in my life; a mother reliving the day that her son died.

Afterward, she showed me a board with old news clippings of Beeper on it.

"This is what I use when I do talks about gang violence," she told me, holding the board that contained graphic images, including one of her 13-year old son lying in the street and being worked on by paramedics.

"I couldn't believe it when I saw that," she said of the disturbing picture of her son.

It was truly horrible.

For Nancy, her goal in life -- the one that was automatically given to her by the people who killed her boy -- is to make sure that other kids don't meet the same tragic fate that her son did. She works hard, trying to keep the doors to the drop-in open for area kids, who might otherwise have no other place to go. Sure, there are other drop-in centre's in the area, but the dynamic of the north end is one that, unless you live there, it's something that many people don't understand. Many of the kids hang out in groups -- This is not to say that they are gangs, or 'bad kids' in any way -- but different groups of kids hang out at different drop-in centres; for some of the kids at the Joseph Beeper Spence Youth Drop-in, this is a place that they have that's their own. If one group of kids doesn't get along with another group, they don't use the same centre. plain and simple.

It might not be comprehensible for people who have never experienced life in the inner city, but having a safe place to go to hang out with your friends and to get a hot meal, is important.

Nancy and the rest of the staff at the centre are working hard to maintain that safe environment for the kids (and families) that use it. They are tireless in their efforts, and most of them work for minimum wage, trying to make a difference in the lives of kids who have come to rely on them.

I know that my appeal may seem desperate, but watching a mother cry and mourn for her son who was stolen from her is something that I will never forget. Helping her in her fight is the least I can do. I admire and respect her strength, and her passion, and I hope that others do too.

Beeper's Mom (Nancy Flett)- The pictures

Museum Day with the Fam (Circa Jan. 2010)

My golden ticket?

It's been difficult to blog these days. I feel as though I bring to the forum is a bunch of complaints about how tired, busy and overwhelmed I am. This is CreComm, of course I'm all of those things.

This semester I am really struggling; I want to do well, but I feel as though I am barely keeping my head above water. I have contemplated quitting my job, quitting school, quitting everything. However, thankfully those thoughts usually only come in the really stressful moments. I usually have a little anxiety attack, and then find a way to talk myself out of it.

I want this really bad, and I've never worked harder for anything in my life.

It's funny, because the one thing that I realize is that CreComm is my ticket to change the world. -- When this is all said and done I want to devote myself to making the world a better place for others; that's the one thing in my life that has made me happiest. (Yes, that sounds cheesy and cliche, but I can't even put into words the absolute feeling of joy when I see that something I've done has impacted someone else's life. It's incredible.) Being in this program has enabled me to meet other people who have the same vision and goals as I do, and it has given me the 'tools' to better myself in my endeavours to change the world.

That being said, I'm not sure if I want to work in the non-profit sector professionally. I really enjoy the volunteer aspect of it all.

I'm getting way ahead of myself though. Right now my life is too chaotic to do as much as I'd like in regards to my volunteer work. I am working on a project right now for the Joseph Beeper Spence Drop-in, but I can't help the cause as much as I'd be able to if it was a different time of my life.

Ah well, as busy as I am, I would be lying if I said that I wasn't having the time of my life. I've met some incredible friends, learned so much, and being in this program has given me opportunities that I'd never have without it.

No matter how hard it gets, I know that quitting is never an option.

Image: Natalie Dee

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Dear Sean Garrity...

Dear Sean Garrity,

Kenton Larsen told me that you read my blog post (aka rant) about my auto-fail as a result of the incorrect spelling of Daria Puttaert's name on the official Zooey & Adam website, and because of that, you changed the spelling.

Thanks! Combined, you and I did a good service to CreCommers everywhere; saving them from impending auto-fails for upcoming assignments!

My auto-fail still stands, but the sting has worn off, and I'm ok with it now. We're not fighting anymore! Hooray!


Shelley C

Saturday, February 6, 2010

"Doesn't mean you fail at life..."

One of the best parts of CreComm is being in a class with Jessica Cable (who breaks out into song all the time!) and Berea Henderson (Who sings, dances and laughs like nobody I know...)

Here is a song they made up called "Auto-Fail."

The week from hell is over!

Last week was the week from hell; tons of assignments, tons of freelance stuff, very little sleep, and a whole whack of emotional termoil that only CreComm's would know about. I know at least eight of us who have cried, or "melted down" this week, and many more who haven't really slept. But, it's over. The weekend is here.

I'm not sure what my schoolmates do on the weekend, but I'm stuck at work from 9:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. It's not bad, but the 10.5 hour shifts are LONG. really, really long. (Here's a picture of me at work now!)

Oh well, it pays the bills.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

C: Chaos.

So my blog has been pretty slack lately; a couple of pictures, my radio assignment and a passive-aggressive attempt at getting someone to send me a case of Metro Mint water. Lame.

In all fairness though, I have been extremely busy. So busy, in fact, that I am deliriously tired, and starting to go a little 'wonky,' if you know what I mean.

CreComm is hard. I've had to remind myself over, and over again that I wanted this for so long, and that I shouldn't take it for granted, but low and behold it is a struggle.

This is probably because I have 'bitten off more than I can chew' so to speak. Well, at least I think I have; I'm in school full time, have a part time job, intern at a magazine, volunteer (as much as I can) with the Indian and Metis Friendship Centre, write business profiles for another magazine, and I just finished a month-long stint of writing the Sunday 'List of things to do' for On7. Life is chaotic. But, like I said, I have to remember how bad I wanted this. Besides, my mom got her PhD while working full time and raising three kids; if I've got her genes, I'm pretty sure I can do anything.

That being said, I am exhausted! I never, in a million years, thought that I would be in the spot that I'm in now; life is busy, but I am working hard to get what I want.

I know I probably always harp on this, but I was a high school drop out, with little ambition. I strived to be one of the "pretty's," and I didn't care if people thought I was dumb. (Ugh, I can't believe that I admitted that.) But, that's who I was, and I am striving to never be that person again. (Although I still want to be one of the "pretty's")

I should probably go to bed. This post is probably fragmented, and doesn't make sense, but I'll edit and rewrite it tomorrow.


An open letter to all my valentine's...

Dear Valentine's,

Please buy me this for love day.

Yours truly,

Shelley C.

P.S. If you don't know my shipping address I will gladly give it to you.

We're fighting Garrity...

I auto-failed an assignment yesterday, and I'm blaming Sean Garrity!

Daria Puttaert's name was incorrectly spelled on the official Zooey & Adam website, I used it, and I failed. -- I know it's my fault for not double-checking with another website, but I figured the official movie website would be a good enough source.


I am frustrated; I would have gotten and eight out of 10 on that assignment...

That being said; Zooey & Adam was stellar, and even though Garrity and I are fighting right now, we'll make up once the sting of the auto-fail wears off...

Monday, February 1, 2010

First radio stations: XWA/KDKA

XWA Montreal first started by the Marconi Wireless Telegraph Company, has claimed to be the first commercial broadcaster in the world. The station, which went on air on December 1, 1919 was called XWA, because the call letters stood for "Experimental Wireless Apparatus" because when the radio station was first formed, it only provided experimental broadcasts that were heard only by people with "crystal sets" or equivalent experimental devices. One of the first people said to be broadcasted on the experimental station was female vocalist Dorothy Lutton.

On May 20th, 1920, six months after it first aired, XWA started hosting “regular programming.” One of the first on-air personalities for the station, that was key in implementing this regular programming was operating engineer Darby Coats. Coats, who was one of the founding engineers operating the experimental station, said that he remembered borrowing a record player and records from a local store in return for mentioning the store on the air - thus introducing the idea of contra to the airwaves for the very first time. Aside from just playing music, XWA would also rip and read local news and weather forecasts from the local Montreal papers.

XWA got its first full licensed on May 15th, 1922. Later that year, on November 4th, the name of the station was changed to CFCF. -- And, while the meaning of the CFCF call sign hasn’t been officially confirmed, it is generally believed that it stands for “Canada’s First, Canada’s Finest.”

CFCF had Canada’s first broadcast studio in the Canada Cement Building in Phillips Square Montreal. It opened on 440 meters with 500 watts. By 1923, power had increased significantly, to 2000 watts.

The station, which has a rich history, is still in existence under the name CNIW. It is owned by Corus Entertainment, and is Canada’s, and perhaps even the worlds, oldest radio station.

Another Radio station that claims to be the oldest is KDKA radio.

The CBS radio station in Pittsburgh Pennslyvania, was the first commercially licensed radio station in the United States.

KDKA was started by Dr. Frank Conrad, an assistant chief engineer of Westinghouse Electric. In 1916, Conrad developed the developed a transmitter and installed it in a garage near his home is Wilkinsburg Pennsylvania. He licensed the amateur station under the call letters 8XK.

8XK halted transmission until after the war because of security reasons. When it resumed, 8XK broadcasted with other amateur radio stations. At that time, the amateur stations consisted of amateur radio operators who traded information with one another, describing the equipment they were using and where their stations were located. However, Conrad On October 17, 1920, Conrad put his microphone by a phonograph and decided to introduce his station to the airwaves.

At first, Conrad broadcast records for two hours on Wednesday and Saturday evenings. When he ran out of his own records, the Hamilton Music Store in Wilkinburg supplied records in exchange for promotion, becoming one of the first radio advertisers.

Westinghouse was granted a radio license on October 27, 1920, and on November 2, 1920, at 6 p.m. 8KX became KDKA Radio. KDKA began broadcasting at 100 watts from a make-shift shack atop one of the Westinghouse manufacturing buildings in East Pittsburgh. KDKA was the first radio station to carry election results, thanks in part to the Pittsburgh Post who provided election returns by telephone. results of the election were relayed to almost a thousand listeners, who learned that Warren G. Harding had defeated James M. Cox in the presidential race.

KDKA "Firsts"

  • January 2, 1921: Calvary Episcopal Church hosted the first religious service ever broadcast.
  • January 15, 1921: Herbert Hoover's first radio address.
  • March 4, 1921: The first broadcast of an inaugural address, as Harding was sworn into office.
  • March 10, 1921: The first broadcast from a theatre -- the songs of soprano Ruth Roye from the Davis Theatre, Pittsburgh.
  • April 11, 1921: The first sports broadcast -- a 10-round fight between Johnny Ray and Johnny Dundee.
  • May 19, 1921: The first regular government farm reports.
  • August 5, 1921: The first baseball play-by-play, announced by Harold Arlin from Forbes Field, where the Pittsburg Pirates defeated the Philadelphia Phils 8 to 5.
  • September 20, 1921: The first radio newsroom established, with a direct link to the Pittsburg Post.
  • July 23, 1982: KDKA became the first radio station in the world to broadcast in AM stereo.