Showing posts from January, 2014

I taste bile! (Pet Peeve #1)

One of my biggest pet peeves as a reader is seeing a line where a character at some point "tastes bile." because he or she is confronted with something that grosses them out, or is so grotesque they are nauseated by the idea or sight.  It's often the ultimate expression of supreme disgust, only to be one-upped by actual vomiting. Reading this description repeatedly for one or more characters throughout a book is what really bothers me. It's not normal to constantly be tasting one's bile. Here's why: Bile is an emulsifier. It is produced in the liver, stored in the gallbladder, and released into the upper section of your small intestine (called the duodenum) to break down fats into smaller fats. It is extremely bitter tasting and the vapours from excessive bile secretion can travel to the mouth for you to taste. In order for it to do so, it has to travel through TWO sphincter muscles (the pyloric and the cardiac), which act as one-way gates, the highly ac

$500 for what?!? Get your ITIN the cheap way (DIY)

Legalities first: I am in no way a lawyer, and this is in no way legal advice and I should not and cannot be held accountable for the information I provide in this blog post. You are responsible for ensuring the information you submit on a government form is accurate and true. Phew! Now, if you want to skip the beautifully written personal account of how and where I got this information, you can download the basic steps I followed here . Now for the story. As I'm going to be published by an American publisher, and I'm Canadian, I need to apply for an International Tax Identification Number, or an ITIN. To apply for an ITIN, I need to fill out a fairly straight forward one-page form and provide original proof of my citizenship and identity. My passport conveniently meets both of these requirements. I have four options for submitting my passport as proof. Send it in the mail to Texas. (Not happening) Apply in person at an IRS Tax Payer Assistance Center and have