Sunday, August 31, 2008

Dispatch from weekend central

I waited for the newspaper yesterday for hours. Up here, the Saturday paper is the big giant one with all the extra sections and advertising. I love spending an hour or two sifting through it after my Saturday morning workout. I never did get it, though it wasn't for lack of trying. I lodged my missing paper situation with their automated system. The system informed me that they were aware of the problem and that I could expect my paper at 10:10am. My mistake, I suppose, was in believing in the automated system, as I never did receive the darned thing.

So we went shopping instead. Serge wanted to check out lighting. See, not only do we need chairs for the new dining table, but we need some kind of cool lighting fixture above it. (And I use the word "need" here euphamistically for desire.) We didn't buy one, but we did peruse many thousands at several different stores. We also got sidetracked by all the labor day sales on the flatscreen tvs. (I guess we can stop calling them flatscreens, since the picture tube style is no longer being sold.) Here's what we both want to know: Is the human eye able to detect the difference between Full HD 1080 and Normal HD 720. My guess is that, yes, you could tell if you put your face right up to the screen, but you can't tell if you're sitting several feet away as we tend to do when we watch. What say y'all?

Friday, August 29, 2008


* The world Monopoly edition is coming out. Montrealers won the contest and so Montreal has the place of Boardwalk, the priciest property on the board. They are using the St Joseph Oratory as the symbol. (I took this pic last month when I walked four hours to get there.)

* The twenty five most common words in English are: the and a to of I in was that it he you for had is with she has on at have but me my not.

* I wish we could fast forward to the US election day. It has been two years of this nonsense, and now there's no escaping it. Even the BBC and CBC were broadcasting live from the convention. It looks like we will probably have an election here in Canada, once we know, there will be 30 days of campaigning before we go to the polls. So much simpler (and cheaper).

* Did you know Monday was a holiday? Serge and I both "found out" yesterday.

* When Julie announced that it was a live double eviction night (on the show Big Brother), I felt like I did when I heard the ice cream truck coming as a kid. Giddy as all getout.

* Here's where I keep my writing implements. VUBOQ is giving away his hand made pottery and I'm showing how pitiful my pencil holder situation is.

* I've got to be brief today. Class starts in an hour. Ugh. Happy long weekend all.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

This n that

It's spider season now. It really helps cut down on the flies. Though every time you go to a place that you haven't touched for a few days, you find webs. This guy was big as my thumb and had set up shop between my potted plant and the deck railing. If spouse had seen it, he'd have destroyed the web and attempted to do away with the spider. So of course I didn't tell him about it.

I heard back from the government job. It took two months to inform me that they have received my application and forwarded it to the pertinent department. I asked my government employee students and they both said it took about a year to get hired. A year! Efficiency in action wouldn't you say? I should probably be happy that immigration to Canada only took me 11 months.

I had a white beer saved in the fridge, but the beerliminator got to it. I swear, I can keep just about any other booze in the house without worry. Heck, there's a bottle of rum that's been sitting there a year. But beer? Never seems to be enough. Anyway, beer's not really my thing, though I do love a good "white" beer. He knows this but he still swilled the one I was saving. So now he's become the beerliminator, the little bastard. (I love you honey, honest I do.)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

As promised

So I don't know if you remember, but we bought this table in the winter, received it in June and have yet to purchase chairs for it. I actually like the white chairs with it and tried to talk spouse into getting nice white chairs. He has overruling powers in the decorating apartment though, so no white chairs.

This is the first chair Serge wanted me to see. We looked at lots of chairs and this steel-n-leather seemed to be available in many styles. Serge liked this one because of the curved metal which you can't really see well here. He said it looked more "design".

This is the other chair he showed me. It's basic, but it flares out just a bit at the top which he liked. I liked the price of this one, it's only a hundy, and the other one is half again as much. I think the first one is better, but I still wish we could find something in white.

Oh and since it was pointed out that I was covering my muffin top née love handles, here is a picture featuring that plus the paunch. Have a lovely day peeps.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

We forgot our anniversary again

We realized it while we were over at Dan's for cocktails on Sunday. Four days late. The first video was better, but that one was lost because *someone* pushed the little trashcan icon on the camera.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Tripping around town again

Yesterday was a fun day. I was thrilled to be able to get Serge out of the house prior to 11 on a weekend. The way I did it was just before going down to the basement to do my workout, I said, "Honey, if you get ready while I'm working out, we can go "faire un tour" of the Dix30." Shopping is usually something I'm not up for, but we do need to find chairs for our dining room table. While I was working out, Dan called and wondered what was up. We ended up picking him up and going over to the shopping center together. Hunger set in right after we dumped sixty bucks at Walmart. (I can't even remember what I bought there except mints.)

I don't know what Costco does to their poutine, but it is the best in the world. It's way too big though. Dan and I split this while Serge tried the Costco Smoked Meat sandwich. (Your Costco doesn't have these things most likely; however, our Costcos also serve pizza, just like yours. )

We ended up shopping for 6 hours and looking at chairs, chairs, chairs and drooling over flat-screen tvs. We've narrowed the chair choice down to two styles. I'll show them to you tomorrow for input. Boy were we thirsty after 6 hours shopping and then tracking down Dan's cell phone which had fallen out of his pocket as he tried a sofa at Brault et Martineau. He invited us in to meet Renée-Claude, Dan's injured cat that he inherited. She's got to wear that thing on her leg until mid-October. I guess it takes much longer for cat bones to heal than human ones. After a couple of drinks and a lovely surf and turf dinner, we came home. It had been nine hours. Poor Sara pooped in our closet and peed under the table. We didn't scold anyone but ourselves. She used to be able to hold it for 12 hours, but those days are gone.

Oh, and I've been fretting and fretting about the weight gain. I took some pictures to assuage the fretting. Nothing to worry about, right?

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Around town

I took this shot and since the foreground was in shadow, the people were nearly undetectable. I sent the pic to serge to see if he could use his mad photoshop skills and this is what he came out with.

(I tried to put this before picture next to the other one, but I'm not html literate.)

We went to the old port yesterday to see the reenactment of a public market in the 18th century. On the way there, it was quite hot and we sought out the shady sides of the streets. Upon realizing that most of the shops were air conditioned, we kept popping in, especially the galleries, and cooling off. I kept being aghast at the prices. They want four grand for what looks like would happen if you let a baby crawl around a canvas with paint on its knees. I was more impressed with the still lifes that looked like photographs but weren't. Wouldn't it be wonderful we asked ourselves, if we didn't care about price and could just come in and pick out our favorite pieces and bring home to put up. Of course, Dan pointed out, that it wouldn't mean as much as if you had spotted a piece, saved up for it, and then went down to purchase it.

At the public market, they had all kinds of weird things. People making candles and soap and clogs and yarn, others making spruce beer and berry spreads. I ate cheese from sheep's milk. I believe that's a first for me. Here I am in the old fashioned hand cuffs.

Because it's a touristy part of town, there are a lot of souvenir shops, and one of them had a bunch of funny aprons. Dan bought this one but refused to model it. Serge obliged me.

Friday, August 22, 2008


* Everyone whines about gas prices, but it's still cheaper than bottled water or bottled anything for that matter.

* When I was out in California, I had it on my mental list to pick up some Paydays. I was telling Laverne about how they used to have Chocolate Paydays but they don't anymore. She asked me if it was covered in chocolate or if the nougat was chocolified. I thought that it was covered like a Baby Ruth. Anyway, when we were in Vegas, there was a vending machine with a Chocolate Payday in it! I had two of them. Indeed they were covered and not infused with chocolate. I couldn't find them anywhere after that and settled for bringing home 10 of the regular ones.
* Now that I've spent 20 minutes looking for them on line, it appears they are only available through Hershey's vending machine operations. There was a limited edition sold everywhere a couple years ago, but even the big internet candy resellers now have listed this item as "discontinued".

* This week marks the first time in 21 years that YELLOW margarine is being sold in Quebec. See, in order to protect the dairy industry, margarine could be any color but yellow, and so margarine producers made special white margarine to be sold here. There are still those who believe the yellow interdiction should be retained and that it will cause customers "confusion."

* I weigh 175 pounds this morning.

* Does this count as a nightmare? I dreamt the water turned freezing cold while I was in the shower and then it morphed and there was no toilet paper left at the end of my movement.

* I came across the tourist-filled aqua bus that tours the city both on land and in the harbor. It made me smile.

* Time Smoke-Free:52 days, 6 hours, 47 minutes and 53 seconds. Cigarettes NOT smoked:1568 Lifetime Saved:11 days, 23 hours. Money Saved:$273.00

* See that $273? Here is what I want (and WILL) to do. Something else I'll be able to scratch off my "before I die" list.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

I'm not making it up either

Spouse had a boo boo yesterday morning. He tried to avoid me knowing about the boo-boo but when I heard the shower go on at 7:30, I knew something was up. Normally, he doesn't shower until right before he has to go to work. It crossed my mind that perhaps he needed to go in early for something, so I went to the bathroom to ask him. When I opened the bathroom door, there he was standing next to the tub with his robe in his hand, rinsing the robe in the shower. He noticed me and immediately said sheepishly, "I made a pet-sauce." Pet is the word up here for fart. Then I started laughing helplessly because there was a spot on his thigh where the robe must have brushed against him after having sopped up the pet-sauce. "Ewww, you've got it on you! Just get in the shower for chrissakes," I roared. See now if I had made a pet-sauce, I would have marched in to wherever spouse was to show him. He, on the other hand, felt ashamed and was probably trying to avoid something like, oh I don't know, me posting on the topic. He's just lucky I didn't get the camera. I thought about it, but that might have ended up being a declaration of war.

Spouse's mom reads this and this is for her : (Please don't tell him you know about this!)

See, he never bothers to read the blog unless someone tells him about some salacious story or picture. I suppose that while I'm at this post I can go ahead and tell another funny story. This happened while I was in Vegas. Spouse sent me some pictures of himself naked that he had spliced into works of art, such as the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. The funny thing about the naked picture he used was that I had taken the picture and not told him about it. I think I mentioned it here, he was asleep on the couch, the sun was shining on him and though he had his robe on, it was open and his arm was hanging down. His goods were, what's a good word here, rather robust looking. Anyway, he must have found the pictures on my computer (easy to do, all pictures are sorted by month taken) and then had some fun with them.

The day after I had received the email, I noticed that other people were writing him to tell him how torrid and sexy the photos were that he had sent them. I was pretty shocked that he would send naked pictures of himself to family and friends. It seemed to me that maybe he had drunk a bit much and sent out the emails. I know I got mine at 2:30am. I mentioned to Laverne that I couldn't believe he had done that.

When I finally got him on the phone, he told me that NO, only I had received the naked pictures, everyone else got a PG version. I don't know why, but that made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Still, it really would have been funnier if he'd drunkenly done that. Here's one of the PG versions. The x-rated version is now my computer wallpaper. (Daniel, please note ; )

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Have you ever come across someone who whines thank you. Like they are forming the words thank and you, but the tone comes out as if they were complaining. Spouse is pretty expert at that in addition to his skills in sarcasm. The way he informs you that you've asked a stupid question is to answer the opposite of what should be the obvious answer. I've been much less tolerant of it since I tackled quitting the cancer sticks. Speaking of which, today I'm a TWEENER. I think it means that I'm between a newbie and an elder on the quit smoking ladder. 50 days done. Here's what I've noticed so far.

I think about it maybe a hundred times a day as opposed to ten thousand. The "craves" for me come in the form of a desire somewhere in the pit of my belly, and this desire is used to being fulfilled with a cigarette. I distract the desire by offering it mints and gum and deep breaths and in a few minutes it subsides. I have now learned that the "crave" will subside whether I smoke or not. In addition, the desire is much less insistent than at the beginning, so yes it's getting easier. I keep telling myself it's all psychological now, but it sure doesn't feel that way sometimes. The crave is really similar to hunger pangs now so I have to be careful about filling it with cookies, pies and ice cream. Or not. I've never really been fat, maybe I should try it on.

There have also been some subtle changes in the plumbing which I'm very satisfied to report.

The next milestone is in ten days (two months), 42 days (three months), and 50 days when I officially become an elder.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

What's going on?

New student with new curriculum.

Thunderstorms! (Half an inch of rain in 10 minutes)

Loving the newly painted house. Amazing the pleasure a change of color can bring.

Still waiting to hear about government job applied for. If I get it, blog goes bye-bye of course.

Sick of trying to come up with New! Interesting! blogposts.

Sara is having some good days. She will still croak soon.

Ten bug bites overnight in bed. As long as it's not bedbugs, it's cool.

Since asked, I lived in Kansas from the age of 6 months to 3 years. I have polaroid memories of that time. (ie static images)

No smoking, no smoking, no smoking.

The brakes on the car are making funny noises.

Weight gain.

Watching only 7 hours of tv per week. Feeling like ditching the tv, but wanting a flatscreen.

Avoiding knitting the never ending pair of socks.

Hoar Knee like an adolescent.

The video I'm forcing everyone to watch.

Monday, August 18, 2008

The odd meme I do

1. What is your occupation right now? Teacher of English as a second language.

2. What color are your socks right now? I don't wear socks with the Birkenstocks.

3. What are you listening to right now? The morning traffic outside, punctuated by birdsong.

4. What was the last thing that you ate? Rocky road ice cream with peanut butter.

5. Can you drive a stick shift? Yes, automatic is for pussies.

6. Last person you spoke to on the phone? Serge when I was at the market and called to see if we needed milk.

7. Do you like the person who sent this to you? I ripped this off from Rox and Brice.

8. How old are you today? 43, but just barely.

9. What is your favourite sport to watch? Does gymnastics count? I watch that every four years or so.

10. What is your favourite drink? That's a moving target. However, milkshake rates consistently in the top three.

11. Favourite food? Probably foie gras and avocados. I know that's two, but it's a tie.

12. What is the last movie you watched? Flawless

13. Favourite day of the year? The first warm day of spring.

14. How do you vent anger? I used to hit, now I yell.

15. What was your favourite toy as a child? The Erector Set.

16. What is your favourite season? If it's springtime, I'll tell you spring, but if it's currently autumn, then I'll tell you fall.

17. Cherries or Blueberries? Cherries but I can't tie the stem with my tongue. Can you?

18. Do you want your friends to add this meme to their blogs? Go for it.

19. Who is the most likely to respond? I don't know.

20. Who is least likely to respond? I don't know even less. (more?)

21. Living arrangements? Spouse and pooch, first floor 6 1/2 (this is how apartments are described here), on the edge of the plateau in Montreal.

22. When was the last time you cried? I think it was watching Finding Neverland.

23. What is on the floor of your closet? suitcases, shoes, blankets, carpet, a few coins

24. Who is the friend you have had the longest relationship with that you are sending this to? I'm not sending it, but em and I go the most wayback.

25. What did you do last night? Slept and I had a smoking dream! The guilt and misery caused me to wake up.

26. What inspires you? Good writing. Clearly I'm not reading enough these days.

27. What are you most afraid of? Chancres.

28. Plain, cheese or spicy hamburgers? Plain. I can't stomach American cheese anymore. If we're having swiss though, then I'll take a cheeseburger.

29. Favourite dog breed? Don't I have to say yellow lab since I have one?

30. Favourite day of the week? Saturday, predictably.

31. How many states have you lived in? Two plus a province. California, Kansas, Quebec.

32. Biggest Life lesson? You can't trust anyone. (Sounds like a downer, but it keeps proving true over and over again.)

Sunday, August 17, 2008


I can't believe I forgot my camera yesterday. That's not like me. If anything, I forget my cellphone, but never my camera. Oh well. This is a scan of the picture we bought before getting on the jet boat to play in the rapids. This is the number one E-ticket (does anyone remember when Disneyland used A-E tickets and you got a book of them at the entry? The E tickets were for the biggest and best rides.) if you are visiting Montreal. Oh sure, there is a Six Flags here, but that doesn't compare to wrangling with nature.

boating exam for Canadians

A couple of fun facts learned. The great lakes and St Lawrence river account for 18% of all the fresh water on Earth. (It's too bad we insist on poisoning the lakes and river.) The river levels are higher than in 23 years due to our massive snowfall in the winter and very wet spring and summer. Rapids are caused more by the narrowing of a river than any undulation of the riverbed.

After the fun, we strolled down to the village for a couple drinks. It was community day for the gay pride festival and we saw the booths for all the gay clubs in town - bridge, bowling, hiking, gayrobics and outreach programs. I thought it interesting to note that there was a "foster a child" booth actively seeking out foster parent couples in our community. We are nothing here if not progressive. (And no, we are still too selfish to take on a child.)

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Other vacay stuff

I brought home a bottle of Absolut Los Angeles. It was in the duty free shop at the airport. It's vodka infused with some things, most notably on the palate that of blueberry. It reminds me of a blueberry pop tart. Apparently this is the second of their limited edition city vodkas, interesting, but I don't really see the link between blueberries and LA. Nonetheless, I drank way too much of it last night.

Serge did a fabulous thing while I was gone. He had our place painted! He planned it all behind my back and had the guys here the day after I left. I can't believe how long we suffered with baby blue and peach everywhere - nearly two years. Now it's a pale greenish yellow (Serge is correcting me, apparently it's "sage") with a burgundy color which ties in nicely with the rug and the art.

I watched a bunch of movies while I was gone. At mom's house, she has a pretty big library of films and I got to see several I've never seen before. Prairie Home Companion was a bit dull, but I liked both Johnny Depp films, Don Juan DeMarco and Finding Neverland. I saw something else at her house too but I can't remember what. Here's mom with her kids.

On the plane I watched 21, Ironman, What Happens in Vegas Stays in Vegas, Flawless and Made of Honor. That personal video system is the only way to fly. I liked all of the films I chose and am glad I did not spend $60 to see them at the theater. Now my vacation is over and I'm working Monday to Friday until Christmas. I thought we were going to ease into this, but no, my services are required daily.

And for those who are curious, today is my 47th day of smobriety.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Back home

See now this is a nice picture of Laverne and I, but I really am only posting it because Laverne insisted that if I put up the below picture, I had to balance it with a nice picture of us. This is the night we went out to see Love, the Cirque du Soleil Beatles show, in Las Vegas.

Of course, me being me, I adore this second photo. I crack up every time I look at it.

The trip was fun - I got to see my family and friends (except Jonathan but I'll be back in five months) and relax at mom's for a few days and then play in Vegas for a few days. Vegas was rather kind to me and I only spent half my $450 budget. I won a $75 jackpot right as we were leaving, so that was a nice kiss good-bye.

The weirdest thing in Vegas was when I woke up in bed, naked, with Laverne. We each had our own bed in the room, but somehow I sleepwalked over to her bed. Apparently I dove into her bed after taking off my underwear and woke her up brutally. She yelled at me but I didn't wake up. Luckily (or not, depending on your pov) I'm not like Brice, who sleepsexes.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Ciao ciao

Along with the daily rainfall we've been getting, there have been some lovely rainbows this week. This one was a double, though you can only barely make it out in the photo.

Today is the last day of posting for a while. I'm off to the west coast and I don't think I'll post while I'm out there. It seems like I always threaten to post on these junkets, but then I never do. So let's assume I won't. I'll do a wrap up when I get back next week. Serge is staying home this time and he seems *very* excited about my departure. He always does this. He thinks it's going to be so fun without me around and then five days later he'll whine at me on the phone how he wants me to come home. Or better yet, send me drunken emails about how it's lonely around here.

It's getting dull around the blog anyway, so this is a good time to take a bloggy breather. Before I go, check out this poor sap's car who parked under the bridge where all the pigeons roost. There is a for sale sign on the car which you can't see, but dude, you might have better luck selling if you find a better space to park.

Don't miss me too much now ; )

Monday, August 04, 2008

This n that

Here is a product display I walked by at a health supplement store. I had read about these things on Lyvvie's blog, although I don't think she ever came back with a review from personal experience. Anyway, if you can't tell what it is, it's called "the menstrual solution", which is news to me because that's what I thought a hysterectomy was. That middle product is the special soap for your Diva Cup.

The gay festival was a total bust. It rained all weekend so the outdoor events were very subdued. I'm sure the late night raves and dances were full of hanky-panky, but my constitution is too frail for such shenanigans these days. (Read: I choose to shun them) Luckily for us, there is another festival, gay pride, which takes place in two weeks. Hopefully the weather will be more cooperative for the parade.

Before that though, I've got to head out to see the folks in California. I'm taking off Wednesday for a week of fun at Mom's house and a little junket to Vegas with Laverne. Must get my hairs cut today. All of the ones on my head anyway. Have a lovely Monday peeps.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Right next to the junk

I love the quiet of Saturday morning. Normally at this time, traffic is getting backed up on our street, one of the main thoroughfares leading downtown. But on the weekend (Did you know that in Britain they say "at the weekend"? It's true. They don't say "at Saturday" though so for me, they're saying it wrong) the street has one car passing a minute, if that. The loudest noises are the birds this morning, and it sounds like there's some crow and seagull hubbub a couple blocks down. It feels like I woke up too early, but it's not all bad, I was just in time to catch sunrise.

The spa day went well. I told the massage therapist that I didn't want ANY pain, and just like that, I didn't have any. At the end, I asked her, "So is that called "Massage Lite"?" She told me no, it was Suédois Détente, which of course is Swedish Relaxation. It's always troublesome for me when the masseuse gets to the upper thigh area, massaging right next to the junk. It seems to turn on some kind of sexual button, her fussing about down there, and then it's hard to enjoy because of the turned-on-but-not-appropriate-to-be-turned-on-situation. It's complicated. And I wonder if all those hyphens were necessary.

The best part of the man's package was the facial. I loved everything about it except the part at the end where she showed me the essential products that I need to use on my face daily, weekly and monthly. The five products came to over $200 were I to have bought them. I'm thinking it'll just be cheaper to go once a month to get a facial. And definitely more fun.

This is the big gay celebration weekend. It's not gay pride yet, that organization has split and will be doing a parade in a couple of weeks. This is the divercité celebration for LGBT and their friends. Which is essentially everyone right? Do you know what's missing up here during these gay gatherings? No protesters. No wingnuts shouting about Adam and Steve, no prosceletizing (I'm astonished I spelled that right on the first try) and no bullhorning. Just a bunch of people enjoying the outdoor festival with music, libations and dancing. See all you locals there later for Mascara....

Friday, August 01, 2008


* This is the lotus. It grows out of rot and muck. In fact, I don't think the beautiful lotus is possible without rot and muck. From death springs forth beauty.

* Is this making news in the states? The most disturbing murder (decapitation!) I've read about in a long time.

* The sell-by date on eggs is 42 days after the eggs have been laid by the hens.

* I read recently (over here) that a potato, apple and onion all have the same taste. We perceive the taste differently due to the smells.

* I was playing boggle the other day and the winner of the round had this screen name: Jesus Twatbomb

* This website is great. I may make it my homepage.

* In every addict's brain lives a junkie. Mine comes out at the usual times and also I've noticed some more creative seductions. You forgot to buy milk when you were at the store, perfect time for a cigarette. I can't find that shirt I like in the closet, oh dear this calls for a cigarette. And the funniest is, ooh ooh, I've got poop at the door, where are the cigs. (I used to smoke on the pot.)

* Today is my spa day. I have never done a spa day before. I've heard facials hurt and I know that massages do. Em told me to practice in the mirror, "That is causing me pain and I want you to stop now." I don't know how this gets ingrained into a person, but I'm never going to say that because it'll make me look like a pussy.