Saturday, March 31, 2007

A first for me

Thursday night, spouse went out with his work buddies, and I always have some yummy gourmet pizzas in the freezer (I suppose the freezer oxymoronizes gourmet) for such evenings. I pulled out a mushroom one and sliced goat cheese on top. Delivered with a Heineken and Survivor, I was a happy camper. Friday morning, I was up as always at quarter to five and on the bus at quarter to six. After the saga of Friday mornings, I ride back to town with Bob, another English teacher and we go to the library to pick up movies for the weekend, (This week, I got Born into Brothels, Transgeneration, and Jupiter's Wife.) and then we eat pizza at the to-die-for pizza place in the metro station. I always get mushroom, but yesterday I got Hawaiian. It was delicious! It even had cherries on it. Then we go off to our lunchtime classes. Last night, spouse called to say he was going to dinner with a friend. I didn't want to do it, but I just didn't have it in me to make something proper. I popped open another pizza with sliced meats on it. And that's how I had pizza as my primary sustenance for two days. The only deleterious effect so far seems to be constipation. But then you already surmised that.

Friday, March 30, 2007


* I like spruce beer. It's like drinking the smell of the forest.

* Once, at a friend's house, I was cornered in the kitchen by the friend's mother. Throughout the short conversation, farting noises seemed to be coming from the mother. When we were upstairs after, my friend apologized for her mother's colostomy bag.

* My imagination is always better (though not easier) than porn.

* Spouse sometimes remarks that I'm getting queenier. A decade ago, this would have caused me to shape up on my straight acting skills. Now I just smile and say, "oh well, guess that's the way I am." So relaxing, that.

* While discussing derivatives from the word false last week, one student questioned the word falacious. "Isn't that a sexual activity?"

* "What would he have had to have been able to do in order to escape?" I actually had to explain the grammar in that sentence this week. (I'll spare you here.)

* Did you see how Circuit City is rewarding its top sales people? By firing them. Meanwhile the CEO is pocketing nearly $4 million this year alone. It's all good though, the stock price shot up on the news. (please note bitter sarcasm in the last sentence.)

* Thanks for the well wishing yesterday. I'm not through it yet but functioning anyway. Have a swell weekend!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Hello blog, I can't come in today

My morning class was canceled today (but I still get paid for it) and I figured I'd get up and think up something to write this morning. Instead, I woke up with a headache, congestion and that hurting eyeball thing. Ugh. At least it's sunny. I'll try to work on some snippets during the day today for tomorrow. Sorry, can't think right now, I think I'll take another nap before my noon class.....

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

On maturity

I used to think the worst insult was to be told, "grow up" or "don't be so immature". I guess that's because once my body reached its adult size, I had officially grown up in my opinion. Being told to grow up when your feelings are (granted irrational) overwhelming your very being is not the thing one wants to hear. I've heard different definitions of being grown up including, learning to master your emotions, learning to delay gratification, and the ability to deny oneself one's desires. Basically, it's all about the ability to control yourself. In reality, we just learn to hide our true selves, I don't think we are ever as fully in control as we like to believe. Here I go digressing again, just can't get out of my head sometimes.

But I think a big part of growing up is learning from your experience and making future decisions based on that experience. So here are five things I never want to do again.

1. Go to a concert. It's over for me. The last three have been pleasant enough, but never as good as the album. It's crowded and it costs too much. If you're an unknown in a dive bar, I'm fine (in fact I dig the intimate live venues), but once you're famous, I'll not be seeing you.

2. Wait tables. God I hope this is true. See the trouble is you've got a room full of bosses who are not bosses in their real life. This is their one chance to control others (they're paying for that more than the food half the time). I can no longer abide it. (but will if I have to)

3. Any drug that makes you stay up all night. While perhaps useful (ha!) in college, the comedown is definitely not worth it. The only uppity thing I want is coffee.

4. Mistake two tablespoons for two teaspoons. Have you made this mistake with salt? I have. Not good.

5. Make absolute statements. Sometimes I make them anyway but I don't really believe them. We are never fully realized except in the moment. Every moment is different, and how we are in that moment is also different each time. To put it simply, I might feel like coffee one day, but hot chocolate the next. And so I grant myself and others the truth, which is that we are all a range of probabilities. Sure, we each have certain tendencies or proclivities, but if you label them, say, "I'm like that!" then you have also shut the door to some of the other possibilities for you. I'm still okay with tangible labels, like tall and male.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Election testicles

The election took place here yesterday. 71% voter turnout. And it rained all day. We ended up with a minority Liberal government, which means we'll probably have another election within a year. I threw my vote away and cast it for the Green party, as did nearly 4% of Quebecers. (I include myself here, I polled my students and they agree that as a citizen who works and lives in Quebec, I can call myself a Quebecer.) I was riveted to the election results on tv last night, let's add another notch to the belt of old age.

Yesterday was a day off for me. A glorious extra day, thanks to election laws, provided to me via cancellations. Sure I'm down a couple hundred bucks, but what freedom! I went shopping and found myself in the underground tunnels downtown, trying on shoes mostly, and marveled at the anthill that LUNCHTIME creates. Every day, I have classes at lunchtime and so I never see this explosion of humans. It was like being on the streets of New York, the flow of people pulsing and snaking through the network of eateries and shopping areas in the underground city. Catching little snippets of conversation in the passing whir of human life all around me. "My daughter got it for my birthday." "And her call was dropped a 4th time in 5 minutes!" "Marc-André doesn't think so." The guy walking in front of me spots a guy he knows who's holding a bag and they greet and shake hands while continuing walking and he asks,"Hey buddy, what you got in the sack?" Without skipping a beat, the other answers, "A couple a nuts, but they're for my wife." Then guffawing and backslapping. I'll admit I smiled.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Cacophany of children's voices

So we made it over to the botanical gardens yesterday to see the Papillons en Liberté, an annual event where they load up one of the greenhouses with butterflies. I hadn't really thought about it being a family type event but when we arrived, there was a cacophony of excited children's voices filling the entrance. We got in and stood at the rear of the line. The line moved very slowly. What they didn't tell you when you got into the line was that it would take over an hour to get through the line. The line snaked through 4 greenhouses before it led to the butterfly filled greenhouse. Can you picture it? Hundreds and hundreds of children and their parents waiting to see the butterflies. Signs saying "do not touch anything" were everywhere and these kids were all adrenalined up over the promised insects ahead. It was comical, the exasperated parents, the tantrum throwing children, the people leaving the line because it's all just too much for the kids to be calm for a whole hour while waiting. Each time a child burst into tears and wailed, I laughed. I don't know why, but the tantrums always make me laugh.

Finally, we arrived and entered the magical butterfly filled greenhouse. It was fairy-like and spooky at the same time. We spent about a half an hour in there, mesmerized by the different patterns and sizes of butterflies, some of them alighting on us. Everyone was taking pictures and I was no exception. Eventually, I started to get grossed out by the butterflies. The closer you look at them, the more buggy they get. I took 90 shots and got two good ones. One of butterflies and one of flowers. What was really cool about the orchid shot is that the pattern strikingly resembles a butterfly. I love how nature does that repeating pattern thing.

Sunday, March 25, 2007


While enjoying each other's company last night, I accidentally got some on Serge's shirt. Dan was quick with the camera and I was eager to gobble it up.

We swallowed everything I got on his shirt. Mmmmm. To show my appreciation, I ran out and drew a little note in the snow on our patio table.

Five minutes later, the drawing was gone. Like nature's little etch-a-sketch.

In other news, I'm having trouble with the blog, I can't seem to get a profile picture to work, and other weird bugs are popping up. I already frittered away an hour this morning trying to get a profile pic, and I don't want this day to get hijacked. We are going to the Botanical Gardens to see the greenhouse exhibits where thousands of butterflies are free to roam about. I hear it's quite impressive. Oh, and by the way, we had cheese fondue for dinner last night.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

This n that for Saturday morning

I once saw an interview with Sean Connery. I had always liked him, and he just seemed to get more handsome with age. Then the interviewer asked him what he disliked most in people, and his response floored me, "Ignorance. I can't stand ignorant people." And I have never liked him since. I'm not fond of willfully ignorant people either, with the key word being willfully. But what I abhor more is arrogance and condescension. These are behaviours learned in adolescence and always strike me as immature. I know I was sure guilty of the know-it-all disease at that age.

Yesterday, I was waiting for the bus on a four foot snow bank. When the bus arrived, I had to make a short leap to the bus entrance from the snow bank. Since my feet were snowy, I slipped and fell flat on my face next to the bus driver. The bus driver asked if I was okay, and I quickly said yes and stood up and brushed myself off. From the back of the bus, I heard cackling and when I looked up, three very old people were carrying on and they shouted out, "It's not god, just the bus driver!" "Easter is still two weeks away!" Apparently it looked like I had bowed down before a priest. They got such a kick out of it, I couldn't help but laugh along with them.

Friday, March 23, 2007


* I bet kids named Owen or Gwen sometimes have parents who call Wednesday Owednesday or Gwednesday. Can't say that I know of any kids with these names, however.

* In French, there is no distinctly separate word for 70, 80, and 90. They compound words together. I bet this makes math a natural for a lot of French kids. 70 is sixty-ten, 71 is sixty-eleven etc. 80 is four-twenty, and 90, strangest of all, is four-twenty-ten. The next new word is at 100.

* It's maple syrup season. It's short, maybe a month if you're lucky. When the days are above freezing and the nights below, that is when the sap will flow.

* When Gerber entered the African continent to peddle it's baby food products, sales were nearly nonexistant. That's because in that market, traditionally, what is pictured on the label is inside of the jar. It appeared as Gerber was hawking purée of baby.

* In the last year, thunderstorms have occurred here every month except two. January and February. It's one of the reasons I love it here.

* One of my students attended a briss (not sure on the spelling there) and told us about it in class. I'm sorry, but slashing off your baby's flesh is unconscionable to me. I wish mine hadn't been hacked off. Should be a choice of the individual. Come to think of it, I know a guy who, on his 18th birthday, had an elective circumcision.

* Knottyboy's rant on anal-bleaching had me howling. I'm curious about the men (it couldn't be women, right?) who chosse to be anal-bleachers.

* I shave twice a week. Any more than that and it ravages my skin. ('How could you possibly care about this?' He asks himself, and becomes alarmed at referring to himself in the 3rd person)

* The world would most likely be a much more peaceful place if so much energy wasn't spent trying to control others. It's one of our species' greatest weaknesses, and while it has built great kingdoms, it will eventually destroy us.

* Sara is doing much better these days. Spouse is convinced that nude dancer tried to poison her. True, she did fall ill right after our last confrontation.

* On Thursday, I give a class in one of the most prestigious buildings downtown. They give tours, architecture blah blah blah, the place crawling with six figure salary makers. This is also the same place that has the "fruit loops" air fresheners in the bathrooms. Well now there is a new addition in the bathroom. I thought it was so funny that these people need a guide to washing their hands.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Lack of time (or is it inspiration?) this am

Titled What We Say To Dogs, one of my favorite one-panel comics I've ever seen depicts a man in his living room shouting, "Ginger, get down off that couch now ginger, I mean it, I want you to get down ginger, down off that couch right now, c'mon now, get down and I'll get you a cookie if you get down now ginger."

Over the dog, Ginger, we see the text cloud above, which is titled, What They Hear. "Ginger blah blah blah blah blah blah Ginger, blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah Ginger, blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah Ginger, blah blah blah Cookie, blah blah blah blah blah blah Ginger."

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

This n that for the first day of spring

Spouse and I watched the last half of Dancing with the Stars. During one of the commercial lead-ins, they had a clip of Heather Mills with her artificial leg saying, "It could come right off" which sent me into a tizzie of laughter. I couldn't stop imagining her twirling this way and that, the artificial limb being flung offstage or into the audience. I even got up and demonstrated, lol. Spouse said I was cruel, but it was the show that pointed out the possibility. Anyway I was done crying laughing by the time she came on with her partner to dance. I, along with the rest of the audience, held my breath. It was amazing. I actually couldn't tell which leg was the fake. Very impressive.

I saw a leaf on the ground yesterday as I was walking to the wood mill to give a class. "How can that be? The trees are still bare, " I thought as I passed. So I stopped, turned around and looked more closely. Gross! It was not a leaf at all, no, somebody's lung foliage is what it was.

It's officially spring. One thing I don't understand. I thought the spring equinox meant that every place on earth had 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of darkness. But here, we broke the 12 hours of daylight mark on Saturday. 4 days before the equinox. Which part of my logic is faulty, because I certainly don't get it.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

A bone to pick

I read an article over the weekend denouncing the blogger movement for robbing revenue from traditional publications while providing inferior material. That because the internet is one big free-for-all, the content is predominantly and understandably mediocre.

This sounded like a big 'ol sack of sour grapes to me, especially since I was reading the article in a traditional newpaper.

I'm sorry, but bloggers do not hold a monopoly on mediocre writing. (Just check out CNN's web copy) And anyway, I don't care what people say, good writing is anything that touches you, moves you, or elicits a reaction. In a way it's like art - there will always be those who disparage.

I can never see my writing objectively. The pieces I think are good fall flat, and some things I'm sure are pathetic end up being big hits. I never think my witing is "good" because I don't work too hard on it. I do that on purpose. (If it's no good, but I didn't work hard on it, no biggie, I wasn't really trying that hard anyway.)

A long time ago in a poetry writing class, the instructor said all the best writing comes when you can tap into the big emotional experiences in your life. If the writer can connect with that, then the writing practically happens by itself. I didn't believe it at the time, but it seems to hold water.

Monday, March 19, 2007

The results

#1 True. I was giving some love to the neighbor's arthritic great dane. As I was hugging the dog, he freaked out and wailed on my head. When Duke, the dog's name, was done, he had torn the scalp from my head. The doctors sewed it back up and I wore a kind of bandage-slash-cap thing for a couple weeks. I remember the throbbing pain. It was Easter, 1977.

#2 Lie. Congrats to Polt, Dirk, Abnitude and Devo. I had already bought a car and gotten a ticket (for driving without a license) by the time I was 16.

#3 True. It wasn't called LeMans, but was the hospital's class for couples. I went with Em and her husband and participated in both the class and the birth of Em's children. We garnered more than a few raised eyebrows in that class.

#4 Tru-ish. This could be a family tease as well. I don't expect the folks to either confirm or deny this, lol.

#5 True. Someone told me once that the shell was edible so I tried it. I like the slight "dirt" taste that comes with the husk and enjoy the crunchiness. The unsalted ones are best.

Thanks for joining me on this edition of Truth or Lie.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Truth or Lie

It's been a while since I've done this. Four of the statements below are true and one is not. Can you guess which?

1. A great dane once tore the scalp from my head.

2. I received a car on my 16th birthday.

3. I have participated in a Lemans course.

4. I was conceived at a drive-in movie.

5. I eat peanuts with the shell on.

Answers coming up tomorrow.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Saturday update

The winds are howling outside, and the snow is swirling and drifting into sculptured mounds like sand dunes. I had hoped we were done with winter but no, gotta get outside and do some more shoveling. And the snow had just about melted when this storm arrived. Wednesday we had a big warmup and hit 50 degrees. That was the day I came home from work and went down to look for something in the garage where I discovered a veritable waterfall pouring through the middle of the ceiling. I'm not talking a drip, and even leak sounds too tame. I sprang into action and got out the camping coolers to put under the falls. I noticed lots of nude dancers belongings were soiled and the floor of the garage was a lake. There is a drain with a wire wrapped around it that must have been frozen. I found the end of the wire and plugged it into the socket, hoping that this would ease the situation. It did after about twenty minutes. As I was fretting and dumping the coolers, I kept wondering why it stank so much and why the water was so yellow.

Then it dawned on me.

Our patio is on the roof of the garage. Sara does her business these days on the patio. So we had a winter's worth of Sara pee frozen in the space between the patio's wood planks and the roof. This, now melted pee, covered my body and most of nude dancer's things. It was so disgusting, but I howled with laughter anyway (what else is there to do in such situations?) and went upstairs to shower. Once the drain unfroze, the waterfall stopped. The garage will probably be stinky for months.

Friday, March 16, 2007

22 years ago 4

The months that followed were dreadful, a huge black hole in my gut that nothing could remove. I felt hollow, like every hello and how are you was just a sham, my laughter a traitor. Meanwhile, Em and I clung together like two buoys in a storm, our emotions the roiling sea. We found a different kind of love together, a safer yet bottomless love, the recognition of being cut from the same spiritual cloth. What made things more difficult was that John and I worked at the same place. I didn't mention that, did I? Yes, he was a Hyatt room service waiter, and I worked in the dining room; naturally, we crossed paths often. I was so broken trying to put on a happy facade and I think he saw that a little and pitied me. A couple months after it ended, he asked for a ride home one evening when we finished at the same time and sucker that I was, I went in and we had sex one last time. I didn't know it was the last time until after, when he said, "You know, this doesn't mean I want to start dating you again." One last little mind fuck, but God I was so grateful nonetheless. Pathetic.

Eventually, I quit my job and moved up to LA to live with Pablo, and John and I lost touch. When spouse and I lived in Long Beach (where all of this happened) I sometimes got news of him, who he was shacked up with, "I'll tell him you said hello" kind of thing. I never saw him again. Sometimes spouse and I went out to the old hangout, The Silver Fox. The bartender there knew all of us back when all this happened, he always calls me tiger when I see him and has done so for 22 years now. After greeting me in French (he always practices with me and spouse now) and addressing me as Tiger, he asked me if I knew John had died. He told me the details, complications from HIV, and that he was gone. I wasn't sad, but rather stunned, the little voice I would never admit was there that said, "maybe one day we'll run into each other again" could be put to rest. Liberation.

Then, this happened.

I know I'll never feel that poisonous love again, and that is by choice. My whole attitude about "cheating" has changed too. Why can't the heart love two at once? Who says? I think the heart is, as Woody Allen says, a very resilient muscle. I guess without that experience, I wouldn't be who I am today, but I still wonder what it would have been like if he had been as gung ho on me as I was on him. I don't think I've ever been with someone who shared my depth of emotion - either I care less, or they do, until I found spouse. From day one we said, "we'll stay together until one of us wants out, no questions asked." Which is really just facing facts. And here we are 14 years later. (It seems gauche to announce it, but that is the end of that story.)

Thursday, March 15, 2007

22 Years ago 3

Before I met John I had already had a two year relationship with Pablo. A couple of years after John, Pablo and I gave another go at it and spent 4 more years together. He was my first (and third) boyfriend. I had "fallen in love" with him, lived with him and a couple years in, he cheated on me (which hurt like hell) and I insisted we split up. When I started going out with John, Pablo seemed to be very rankled as though it was alright for him to go off having flings but not me. Somehow, I got more attractive to him once he found I had feelings for someone else. I think we were both a little immature to be shacked up at 18 (looking back anyway) but we did exercise those heady feelings of the love at the beginning, the stagnation that comes with familiarity (if you let it) and finally the deceipt, betrayal and separation. So why was it so different with John? I honestly don't know. It is as if there is a different kind of love, more powerful than the run-of-the-mill "falling in love", which I would call Poisonous Love. You know, it's what Glenn Close had in "Fatal Attraction". Well, that's what I had, and it's a good thing I don't have a murderous bone in my body.

Here's a couple Glenn Close moments I remember. It is so shame filling to admit that I did these things. We had been together less than a month when I had to work the evening shift and he went up to West Hollywood with Joe. When I got home, I rang him and there was no answer. I called every ten minutes or so until the morning and there was never an answer. This is long before cell phones. I was convinced that he had cheated (already) just like my last. (I'm chuckling now, because in fact, he had) The next day I went to his house, and there was a guy there who had "just stopped by" and was visibly shaken by my presence. My peabrain did not want to connect the dots, but in reality this guy was just leaving from the night over and the phone had been unplugged. Another time, I took his house key "by mistake" and then rummaged through his apartment while he wasn't there. I didn't find any evidence except a card, ready to mail to an old friend up in San Francisco. I steamed it open with his vintage teapot and read it. The only line I remember was, "My love life is pretty much on the back burner for now." Of course I couldn't admit that I had done this. But oh how painful to read those words from the person I was poisoned with love over. God I was such a fucking idiot.

The rest is just ugliness. It was okay for a month or two more and then he basically came out and said he was cheating on me, and that he would totally understand if we broke up. (I had caught him in a lie when he confessed - with tears!- though I can't remember what the lie was) I instantly (fool!) forgave him and begged him to give it another try. A couple weeks later he told me those dreaded words - that he wasn't sexually attracted to me anymore. After he told me in person, I pleaded with him to give him one last blow job (so unbelievably humiliating to remember- though I do remember it) before I left, and he "let" me. Then I began a period of the most intense emotional pain that I have ever experienced. And it probably saved me from dying that the universe had just plopped em into my life.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

22 years ago 2

I wonder if the universal human experience isn't one of love at all, but one of suffering. I know I've experienced many different kinds of love, the love of family, romantic love, the love of a pet, the love of spirit and yet I do not know if others experience it in just the same way as I. Suffering seems so much simpler to understand, even though there are so many shades of suffering as well. These days I'm likely to say (and believe) that suffering is only a state of mind, that people are actually able to suffer less if they only put their mind to it. But I digress. (I think I digressed, but then again maybe not, this is a story of suffering love, perhaps I'm just looking for a proper segue, so I guess that wasn't really a digression, though this certainly was.)

I have a dilemma now. There are huge holes in my memory and I don't know if I should embellish what's missing or just talk about what I do remember. All my life I've had this uncanny ability (or perhaps affliction) to forget all the bad and retain all the good experiences in life. Except when the good is wrapped up in the bad, the good gets lost as well. This is just a dime-a-dozen story of heartbreak, the catalyst for a million songs, so I think I'll just stick to what I can remember. I do not remember our first kiss, nor any sex at the beginning (I know there was lots and LOTS, but can't remember it) though I do remember thinking at one point that we had spent 14 nights in a row together and that I wished it never to end. I remember wishing I could put John in a little box and only take him out when I was home, but that probably stemmed from my sensing my feelings were stronger than his. Truth is I don't really want to remember all this, but since I've already started, I may as well get it out.

It was John who said, "I love you" first. This I remember, after about a week, us cruising down Pacific Coast Highway in my Triumph Spitfire convertible when he turned and said, "I think I'm falling in love with you Tornwordo." It was then that I let myself go, gave myself over to my intense desire for him, wild unimaginable feelings of love, joy, and their evil sisters, distrust and possessiveness. I simply evaporated and in my place became a John worshipper, putting aside all his wants in order to please him, doing only what he thought he wanted. Looking back, I'm surprised it only took four months before it all came crashing down. I'll tell you about that soon.

(Is it wrong to post pictures of dead people?)

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

22 years ago

The first time I met him, I was hypnotized by his beauty. It was impossible to express that since my friend Joe was dating him. Actually, dating isn't really the right word. Joe was a self-proclaimed virgin and bisexual on the edge of coming out and considering making John his first foray into gay. They had been doing the flirty dance for some weeks, so I quickly quelled any dirty thoughts on my end.

This was very difficult the first time I was invited to a BBQ at John's where he unabashedly pranced around in his speedos all afternoon. ( To this day, no one will compare to how he looked in those.) At the end of that evening, John, a little liquored up, told me that Joe and he were not going to happen. Joe wasn't ready yet. The way my heart soared at the news should have been my first hint to get the hell out of there, and I did manage to stammer an, "Oh I'm so sorry, that's too bad, " before I left, my mind racing with what-ifs.

If it had only gone no further, I would be able to remember the sweet arms of possibility wrapped around me that night. But the subsequent events would effectively block out most of my positivie experiences during this time. I'm sitting here trying to uncover the million layers of girief to remember our first encounter together, and yet I cannot. In fact, I can only grasp little shards of images of us in bed together, a force stronger than love having dimmed the memories so much, I could probably be convinced it was all a dream.

Unfortunately, it was not.

(to be continued)

Monday, March 12, 2007


It looks as though nothing is coming forth this morning. Tant mieux. The weekend was half way decent, full of chores, but the house is clean now and my office is organized and caught up on. Yesterday, I went down to the frigid garage, opened a couple of sacks of nude dancer's belongings and found that his shirt size exactly matches spouse's. He has half a dozen new work shirts now, cleaned and pressed and ready to wear. There's another dozen sacks to work through over the coming weekends.

As I said, I've really got nothing for you. I have a big week ahead of me, hopefully something noteworthy will occur so I will have fodder. Go now, read some other bloggers whose lives can't be as dull as mine.

Sunday, March 11, 2007


Downtown in the late afternoon, I was entranced by the play of light reflecting on snow. This was my favorite shot of the day.

I took a few pictures of the snowy park.

And I played around with the shots. This one I almost deleted until I noticed the advertising billboard.

Like an orgasm, only faster. Good Sunday everyone!

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Friday morning train ride

Friday mornings are the toughest. I have to get up at quarter to five and be out of the house by quarter to six. I catch the bus to the metro and then the metro to the commuter train station. I take the 6:30 commuter train out to the burbs and start class at 7. Yesterday, I got on the train and was alone in the car. I took a little video which shows how puffy and tired I look at that time of day. Also, it was -22 C (ten below farenheit) which is why steam was rising off the river. Here have a look.

Shortly after the video, we arrived at my stop. The train was running behind so I was already going to be ten minutes late. When the train stopped, the doors made a grinding sound but did not open. What! Wait! So I ran to the other end of the car to exit those doors, but they were also closed. Then I heard the "ding ding ding" which means the doors are closing and the train is leaving. I panicked and started pushing all the (authorized personnel only) buttons, green ones, red ones, yellow ones but nothing happened. The train began to move. "Ahhhh, nooooo, waaaaait!" I said pounding on the doors. Just then, the conductor appeared and I waved at him and screamed, "The doors didn't open!" So he radioed the engineer and restopped the train, unlocked the doors and let me out. It's pretty funny thinking about it now, but not as it was happening.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Kinda cranky snippets

* Yahoo has expunged all "vulgar" words from their version of Scrabble. It is now impossible to play words such as "bitch", "piss", "tits" (although the singular "tit" is acceptable,) " fag", "crap" and the usual four letter epithets. What really frosts me though is that "cock" and "pussy" are also banned. (Cat and rooster are fine though.)

* The bus cleaners are threatening a strike again which would effectively shut down the public transit system, blocking me from earning money. They make over $20 an hour to sweep. Makes me want to go postal, but if they do it, I'll probably just get a car and be done with that shit.

* Why are olives sold with pits in them? Does anyone appreciate this? It's bad enough scraping the olive off the pit with your teeth, but then you've got to hawk the thing up on your plate. What recipe calls for unpitted olives anyway?

* It's so cold up here these days, my weenie has retreated to my colon. (I stole that joke.)

* Yesterday, I finished my first Sudoku puzzle. Usually I tire of it before I finish.

* Nearly all "tion" words exist in both French and English, but some of them are used more widely in one or the other languages. Do you know what "remuneration", "reparation", "approbation", and "legation" mean? I only learned these words by learning French.

* We watched the "40 year old Virgin" last night. There were a couple good laughs. I particularly liked the speed dating girl who corrected the pronunciation of her name, "It's GINA" (long I) she protested when she was called Gina.

* No prospective employer has ever asked to physically see my University diploma. Which is good since it's buried deep in a box somewhere.

* I've never had any STD's. Unless you count crabs.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Is that a faggot on the ballot?

The candidate for the Parti Quebecois, Andre Boisclair, is gay. This is not news for anybody up here, but it may surprise those down south that the next prime minister of Quebec may be, gasp, a homosexual. I don't know if he'll win (or if I'll vote for him) but I like the idea of living in a place where that particular characteristic doesn't preclude a life in politics.

Then some shock jock on the radio had to go on about how people aren't ready to vote for a faggot. Fortunately, he was relieved of his duties (temporarily). But it was a sad realization, that no matter how many advances we make in promoting tolerance, dissing the faggots never goes out of style.

It makes me want to vote for him just to cancel out the fuckwads who aren't voting for him just because he's gay.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Must be the sit-ups

Something strange occurred over the weekend, and I'm hesitant to speak on it. Hesitant because it exposes something that invites judgement. But I'm going to talk about it anyway, because I keep revisiting it, like an unsolved riddle. Here's what quote unquote happened. I was doing my normal workout routine down in the basement. I enjoy working out here, I have a little room where the water heaters are and all the exercise equipment is set up. I play jazz radio as I work out and sometimes dance between sets as there are no windows or other visibilty from outside. It's me time and although working out is never fun per se, the solitude and music make it an overall pleasing activity.


I had just finished my routine. The last exercise I do at every workout session is crunches. I lay on the floor and put my legs up on the bench. Once I'm done, I usually lie there for a few minutes, savoring the inbetween time - between working out and the rest of the day. So Sunday I was there at the end of my workout and I started thinking about the "other side". How I do believe that there is more to reality than that which can be perceived by our physical senses. How dreaming is a good example of perhaps getting to the other side, whatever it is, the side that brings forth the shininess of reality here on earth. And then I thought about how we can't ever go to the other side when we're awake because our waking conciousness is so in control. Then I thought about trying to turn my mind off and invite any "vision" to appear as I held a question in my mind, "how do I get there." I kept looking at the screen where my eyes were, watching the patterns moving and then realized that I was consciously "thinking" about it, that I had to let what was way down in the pool of my consciousness come out. If I pretend to fall asleep....

This sounds weird doesn't it? I know. I'm like that.

Suddenly, like in a dream at dawn, half awake, I was moving in a tunnel. The tunnel was made of little bits of light shimmering and twisting around. A vague light up ahead getting brighter. As I was nearing the end of the tunnel to where bright light was waiting, I felt a pang of fear and the whole "vision" collapsed. Suddenly my stomach started convulsing. Wildly convulsing as I lay there on the floor wondering if I'm crazy or not.

My logical brain immediately tried explaining everything away. Vision? Pfft. Imagination. Spasms around the abdomen? Must be the situps. (Though in all honesty, that has never, ever happened before.)

That evening, Serge turned on the TV. Only a few channels work right now because the cable company (just fucking sucks) is experiencing problems. As I made dinner, I looked up and saw an animation depicting the exact "tunnel" I had seen earlier that morning. All the hair on my neck stood up as a tingling swept through my body. I have no idea what the program was about, or what all of this means, if anything. But it sure has me thinking.

Even though thinking is not the way "over there".

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

A bunch of nuttin'

Ugh, it's minus 40 with the wind chill this morning. Did you know that minus 40 is where Farenheit and Celsius meet? Well it is. When you say minus 40, it is accurate by both methods of measurement. I thought I was done with the immense winter layering of garments, but no.

There is nothing exciting going on right now. It's like a treading water period. Staying afloat but nothing remarkable about it. I find my mind drifting off to future events like New York in May and the summer beyond. I know it's more *correct* to be living in the moment, just seeing what comes, but the moment is boring these days and unable to rivet my attention.

I suppose today will be much like yesterday. Might resemble tomorrow a great deal as well. Sigh. I'll get out of this funk. Probably about the time it gets above freezing. Peace.

Monday, March 05, 2007

This 'n that

Already Monday morning. Got a lot done on the weekend (taxes done!) but I don't exactly feel energized for the week ahead. Sigh. Where is that chipper spirit I'm so accustomed to having? It'll be back, just as surely as it has gone. It probably doesn't help that spouse woke me up shouting, "That is so stupid" in French, the result of some dream he was having, and I never really got back to sleep. (Sometimes he wakes me up howling with laughter. I'd like to ride around with him sometime in his dreamworld.)

I've really got nothing else today for you. Except maybe this. There's been a big brouhaha up here about banning female soccer players from wearing the headwrap. It has been banned, and there has been outcry. And I was thinking how in our desire to promote cultural diversity, we promote cultures that refuse to diversify. And I'm stumped there at the *logic*. (I do think banning the headscarf is ridiculous. It hurts no one.)

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Sunday media dump

It was a beautiful week, clear skies and mild temps. I took this shot downtown Thursday. All pics are clickable for screen filling versions.

That same morning, the day before the snowstorm. Note how little snow there is left.

Here is Saturday morning, the day after the snowstorm.

I was surprised to see a jogger. Notice the person digging out their car in the background.

But then when I went out, I saw that the sidewalks were pretty well cleared.

A neighborhood cathedral.

The snow drifted up the side of the stairs.

It was a beautiful walk. Then I came home and Serge was shoveling.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Snowy name meme

We had one doozy of a snowstorm yesterday. 35 centimeters! (14 inches) The 1000 square foot patio awaits my shoveling. Plus all the usual Saturday chores. I haven't been able to comment on blogs the last couple days because the word verification isn't showing up. I mean it asks me to verify the displayed word, but there is no word displayed for me to verify. Frustrating. Anyway, I am reading your blogs! This little meme comes from Joy via Chunks.


YOUR GANGSTA NAME (1st 4 letters plus izzle): Richizzle

YOUR DETECTIVE NAME (fave color + fave animal): Blue pooch

YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME (middle name + childhood street): Jesse Ganador

YOUR STAR WARS NAME (last 3 letters of your last name + first 2 letters of your first name + first 3 letters of Mom's maiden name):Merricof

YOUR SUPER HERO NAME (2nd fave color + fave drink): Green Coffee

YOUR IRAQI NAME (2nd letter of your first name + 3rd letter of your last name + any letter of your middle name + 2nd letter of your Mom's maiden name + 3rd letter of your Dad's middle name + 1st letter of a sibling's first name + last letter of your Mom's middle name): Iresce

YOUR WITNESS PROTECTION PROGRAM NAME (Grandma/Grandpa's first name + Jones): Jesse Jones

YOUR GOTH NAME (Black + name of one of your pets): Black Sara

YOUR AMERICAN IDOL NAME (fav car and sea food) Volvo Crab

NAME OF YOUR DREAM BAND (name of computer + printer): Dell Lexus

MOVIE STAR NAME (sibling's middle name + mother-in-law's maiden name): Sebastian Le Buis

YOUR ALTER EGO NAME (name of one your childhood pets + popular brand of clothes when you were young): Frosty Toughskins

YOUR LAWYER NAME (fav actor's last name + fav hard liquor): Walken Vodka

YOUR HIP HOP NAME (fav candy + fruit): Gummybear Cherry

Have a swell weekend!

Friday, March 02, 2007

No time for snippets

* I had a whoopsie drink Wednesday. This is the one drink you shouldn't have had. You don't know you had the whoopsie drink until the next morning.

* $1800 per door. 4 doors need replacing. I would rather go on a cruise to Europe but as adults, we must delay gratification.

* Talibanus: one's rectal condition following participation in an Arab orgy

* I love that they announce a Provincial election here and it takes place four weeks later. We are bombarded weith election publicity for these four weeks. In the states, the November 2008 election is already daily news fodder.

* You know what I bet would taste good? Deep fried cheese pizza.

* I dislike grape juice (too strong) and apple juice ( just gross). Oddly enough, I love the combo.

* Why philatalist? Why not just "Stamp collector"?

* March brings with it the last gasps of winter. Indeed, I'm off to trudge miles in the blizzard raging outside.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Coupla movies

One of the renters had cable installed yesterday in her apartment. That wouldn't be noteworthy except it seems that the installation somehow compromised our signal. So when we sat down last night to watch American Idol, and realized it wasn't watchable, I popped in a film. Last week, a colleague of mine turned me on to the huge selection of films available for borrowing at the central library. (This really flips my cheap gene ; ) On the weekend, we watched Trainspotting, a film I had never seen. It was a strange film and I didn't know whether to be depressed or tickled. (I howled at the scene where the excrement riddled sheets are flung open, splattering the family as they eat breakfast.) Last night, we watched Mrs. Henderson Presents. What a darling little film. I had a permagrin watching it. And the reveal at the end that it's a true story only makes it more appealing. Also, there was full frontal nudity, both male and female. Spoiler alert! Bob Hoskins takes it all off. If you haven't seen it, I dare you not to smile while watching it.

Got a giant day ahead of me and a big snowstorm is on tap for tomorrow, so I'll be happily anticipating that all day. Cheers!