Friday, December 11, 2009

Hilarious Hobbies

so ive realised that the people who work at the shopper's drug mart next to my building probably think i am insane, and im ok with that. in fact, i have kind of gotten to a point where i find it entertaining how mental i always end up appearing when im there. allow me to enumerate my favourite highlights:
1) there was the time i was wearing my pyjamas and bought a two litre of gingerale (im thinking i was probably hung over). realising i looked like a mental case, i decided to try and look "saner" by purchasing some snacks as well. it wasnt till after that i realised the pyjamas werent really doing me any favours.
2) there was the time i was looking at the clearance rack for, oh, i dont know, 40 minutes or so and got into an altercation with the girl working because i opened a three dollar box of perfume to smell it. i ended up buying it, thinking, hah! i showed her by taking the high road! only to realise i hadnt bathed and was still wearing the makeup i had slept in the night before (i was definitely hung over that day)
3) which brings me to today. im pretty sure when i go in there, one of the staff kind of shadows me to make sure im not stealing. anyway, its like minus twenty today with the wind chill and the wind gusts are getting up and over 50 km/h. so, i had taken out my recycling and decided to buy a candle at shoppers because my apartment didnt smell right and i only wanted to leave the building once. so i was wearing my crocs with bare feet, my winter coat, my 12 foot wool scarf wrapped around my head and neck like some sort of eastern european matriarch, and was carrying a 16 litre bucket and four empty green bags. (remember: i had just taken out the recycling) and once again, i was in my pyjamas (although, i would like to point out that i was NOT hungover). anyway, so i was looking pretty mental when i purchased a single candle and left, but i was laughing myself silly on the way home.

Inquiring Minds Need to Know

does superman wear those red boots inside clark kent's shoes? if he does, does that mean he has to buy clark's shoes a size bigger? maybe they are more like red socks or something....

Thursday, December 03, 2009


SOOOOOOO i have been trying for literally DAYS to get my resumé printed off so i can take it to the bank because this woman who served me suggested i do so, and you will not BELIEVE how much trouble ive had. first i got it printed off but the fucking computers at the fucking library dont have fucking MS WORD so the other programme reformatted my resumé and i didnt notice until i got home. so then i went back to the library to reprint it and lo and behold i lost my FUCKING JUMP DRIVE. SO I WENT BACK TODAY TO START A NEW RESUMé IN THE FUCKING ALTERNATIVE TO WORD FUCKING PROGRAMME AND IT TOOK MORE THAN AN HOUR BECAUSE IT DOESNT HAVE RESUME TEMPLATES AND I HAD TO DO EVERYTHING MANUALLY AND THEN THE FUCKING LIBRARY COMPUTER SHUT ITSELF DOWN WITH NO WARNING AND IT WASNT SAVED.
so now im at an employment centre using a computer that does, in fact, have word. my resume is done, saved, printed ready to go. suck on that, library.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Customer Service

believe it or not, i actually had a pleasant experience at the bank. crazy talk, i know. BUT i had an appointment and the woman who was supposed to see me had called in sick and i was like ok fine ill come back tomorrow and the customer service woman reversed my service fees for this month because of my inconvenience. and i walked out of there feeling just fine. now the point of this story is that as much as i thought it was very cool that this woman provided me with such good customer service so i didnt walk out of there in a blinding white rage (as i am wont to do) it really bothers me that this sort of thing should be the norm, not the exception. there was a time when you always got good service everywhere you went, and if you didnt, then someone's ass was getting fired. sadly, this doesnt seem to be the case anymore and i dont know why. but it drives me batshit crazy.

Monday, November 16, 2009


hahahaha so dave and i went to see the vanity fair portraits at the ROM yesterday, and let me tell you, it was excellent. callie, you would have loved it. anyway, THIS fine photograph was the hilarious piece de resistance. you see, not only was this cruise family mountain picnic moment the cheesiest photo in the whole show, this was the ONLY image that didnt have a little blurb beside it about the people in the photo and the photographer. which brings me to my question...... did tom cruise tell them not to write anything about him because he is a crazy control freak (dave's theory)? was the ROM at a loss for words because this ridiculous photo speaks for itself (my theory)? or, did the church of scientology forbid comment because tom cruise has so deftly embarassed them in public that they were covering their asses? let me know what you think.
ps. if i disappear sometime in the near future, it is because the scientologists hunted me down. goodbye cruel world!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Reader's Choice

so last week the 2009 View Magazine (our hamilton alternative paper) Reader's Choice Awards was published, and i thought i would take a moment to write about the more hilarious winners. in ascending order of hilarity, here are my top four picks.
4) the snooty fox won for best clubhouse sandwich. this is hilarious for two reasons. first of all, the fox for years touted itself as THE wing joint in town. it hasnt won a reader's choice award for best wings since i was in first year. since i am completely juvenile and spiteful, i take a certain amount of pleasure in this, as i used to work there, and things ended badly. (this exact same reasoning applies to the fact that they didnt/havent won for years in the "best beer selection" or "best pint" categories, either). what is even far more hilarious though about this is not what they didnt win, but what they did. if they are still making club sandwiches the way they did when i worked there, then the view readers/voters havent been getting out enough. you see, we would pre cook the peameal bacon in the oven (all the way through i might add) until it had a dried out consistency not unlike cardboard. we used the same crappy serca foods frozen and water injected chicken breasts for every chicken item, and the club was no exception. anyway, we would take these two terribly over baked, rubbery meats and REHEAT them on the grill, so that any possible remaining drops of moisture or flavour were eradicated. THEN we would mash them onto under or over (depending on who was cooking) mayonnaised slices of texas toast, top them with unwashed lettuce and unripe tomatoes, and serve with a side order of lukewarm unsalted fries. YUM.

3) apparently there are a lot of single people in hamilton who are remaining so because of logistics. you see, reader's choice for best place to meet straight men was at a couple of bars, while the best place to meet straight women was starbucks (?) or tailgate charlies, which is a club. its a good thing the view published this, so that all of the single people can come up with some kind of middle ground because they clearly keep missing each other.

2) next on my list would be the best place to meet gay men, which apparently is at one of the bathhouses. for those of you who are unaware, bathhouses are where gay guys (usually old and ugly ones) go for some good ol' fashioned anonymous, possibly disease ridden sex. generally speaking, bathhouses are a shameful blight on the gay community, and people like myself and trevor make fun of them endlessly. i am pretty sure that very few gay men actually voted in the readers choice awards this year, and so this category won due to the naivite of the idiot stoner straight guys who read the view.

1) and my personal favourite requires a quick anecdote from 2008. last year, the "best place to breakup with someone" was tim horton's. which i found hilarious. i also found it hilarious that someone would actually have so many breakups under their belt that they would have a "best place" to begin with. anyway, this year the winner is: FACEBOOK. hahahahahahahahahahahahahahah. i dont think i need to say anything more.

Monday, October 26, 2009

This is my Theory

ok so i have this theory that hamilton librarians get old and turn into hamilton library security staff. but only the women. the male security guards are like the polar opposite of their geriatric counterparts. cause seriously, the security guards are like, a bazillion years old. and they are total, complete bitches. i think they save up all of their hateful book vibes and kinky librarian disciplinarianity (oh, yeah thats a word now) and channel it into octogenarian security anger juice that fuels them. i think its the only thing keeping them alive. and then they die in the stacks and the young male security guards hide them in the basement where the public isnt allowed to go. prove me wrong, i dare you.

These are the Daves I Know

sadly, my dave count is down. you see, there is this guy named dave who anne and i know from swimming. he is high functioning special needs, and a group of people from his group home used to go to the same swim that anne and i did. so we would see him and his friends every thursday. dave was great. his group home is right around the corner from my home, and every time id see him he would ask how annie is doing and tell me what he was up to. his best friend is brian, also a very sociable guy. they went on a trip up to a cabin this past september and they were both so excited, because neither has a worker right now, and havent had much opportunity for recreation lately. anyway, so i ran into brian on my way home after getting off the go bus like i usually do on monday mornings, and brian told me that david is dead. he was only 65. he went in to the hospital for some surgery and was home for a few days and then fell in the bathroom and died. i expect there is more to it than that, but brian didnt really know all of the details. anyway, it was a very sad way to start the day. brian is down a best friend, and i am down a dave. nonetheless, i am going to remember him as he was. thoughtful and friendly, i once got him to help me carry a canvas to my apartment. he was fascinated with numbers and was forever writing them down in his notebook. i cant believe he's gone.

Friday, October 23, 2009


since i am still immature enough to send out subtle messages of contempt to the world at large, i am thinking i might take the mensa entrance exam. this is partly inspired by a david sedaris essay, and partly by a conversation i had with my mother this morning. you see, as much as she may deny it, my mother is keen on labelling her children for no real reason whatsoever, except perhaps that she has some bizarre fear that without her labels, we would all cease to have identities and perish. as such, my siblings have always been beguiled with labels that fall under the "talented" category, while i have always been laden with "smart." the problem here is that i have always felt that i am simply smart enough to know how profoundly smart i am not. this leaves me feeling like the smart nomenclature is a paltry consolation prize for being considerably less attractive and talented than my siblings. i prefer to think of my "talents" as being more along the lines of having the ability to walk extremely fast despite having comically short legs, or being able to crack two eggs at a time without breaking the yolks.
anyway, i figure if i take the mensa entrance exam, it will be a win win situation. if i do well on the test, then i can make fun of mensa (see? they let ANYONE in, intelligence is so overrated, it clearly does not count as a "talent") and if i do poorly then i can derail the "chloe is so smart" train once and for all.

ps. mum, before you get all defensive, this post is not meant as some sort of jab against you.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Chloé versus Library

so i stuck it to the library yesterday, and i was SO proud. you see, last week or the week before, i got a call saying i had an overdue book, and i thought hmmmm i dont think so. so i went in to ask what book they were talking about, and they said holidays on ice (see review below). and i said, well.... i remember returning that. not, i THINK i returned it, or i THOUGHT i returned it, but i REMEMBER returning it. it was a monday. anyway, so the librarian puts a "return claim" on the book, which means they will stop charging me overdue fines while they look for the book. and i said ok fine. but it was really bugging me, because i KNEW i returned it. so the next day i went back in and asked them how this return claim process actually works. and they told me that every couple of weeks they take the return claim list and go through the shelves and see if they can find this. and i suppose they do this at all of the branches. they said that if, after a few months the book doesnt turn up, they charge you for it. and i said... oh. so i left but it was still really bothering me big time that they had lost the book but were going to charge me for it. and it bothered me that i was going to have this hanging over my head for weeks and possibly months before it got sorted out. in case you are new to my blog, i go to the library almost every day, and i take out a copious number of books. AND i read them so quickly that they are seldom, if ever, late. anyway, so i was irritated. SOOOOOOOO i came in yesterday and i thought, fuck this im not waiting around for months for this to get sorted out, im going to find it myself. even if i have to go to every single branch in the city and scour the shelves. so i looked up on the computer where the book OUGHT to be if it had been shelved, and lo and behold! it was here! at this very library! where i RETURNED IT TWO WEEKS AGO! it had been reshelved without being checked in. so i marched it up to the check out desk and told her i FOUND it on THE SHELF and she knew i was pissed and was very apologetic, and that is the tale of me winning. so. there.


well i suppose my faith in humanity has been slightly restored, because a few days ago, i lost my wallet. i didnt realise it was gone until a few hours later. so i was pretty bummed. there wasnt any money or valuables in it, but i did have my sin card and birth certificate and health card (the red and white one!) not to mention pictures of clients and my dead weather ticket stub. on top of all that, it took me SEVEN years to find a batman wallet, and ive only had it since june. anyway, long story short, someone returned my wallet to the police station, so i got it back, intact. the only thing stolen were my bus tickets. which is kind of lame. but thank the good lord, i was so relieved and happy.

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Raw Shark Texts

so then i moved on to The Raw Shark Texts by Steven Hall (i think, i have to be more on the ball with these reviews, because i really feel like ive missed a few books somewhere along the line, but maybe i just slowed down the pace a little bit). i have to admit that while i was reading this book, i was thinking of ways to describe it in review. and i came up with two ideas that i couldnt decide between, so i shall present you with both. take your pick.
1) this book would be best described as the kind of thing my sister would like.
2) this book would be best described as an artsy-fartsy version of science fiction and thriller
perhaps numbers one and two are synonymous. i dont know. anyway to give you the basic frame work it goes like this: (bear with me, i didnt write it) there is this guy named eric who doesnt remember anything about himself before waking up on his bedroom floor. absolutely nothing. eventually, he discovers that he is being hunted by a "conceptual shark" that swims in the ocean of ideas that link concepts together. he realises that in his previous life before his memory loss, the shark got a hold of him and that was how he lost his memory in the first place. rather than trying to hide from it for the rest of his life, he seeks out some people who maybe able to help him capture and/or kill it. if you can bring yourself to swallow all of the bizarre conceptual fish hunting a real person stuff, the story is very interesting and reads like any other mystery or thriller. on the whole it is enjoyable and entertaining. that being said, i do have some negative criticism.
first, the ending. this is an arguable point, and ultimately a question of taste, but i felt that the author had set up the climax to end in a completely different (and i think much more satisfying and less feel good) way. if i were writing the screenplay, i would most definitely insert MY ending because it would be awesome. im trying to make this point without spoiling anything or giving to much away, so forgive my vagueness and take my word for it. or dont, and go read the book yourself.
next, there are a lot of passages that are very, shall we say, "high thinking" descriptions about the shark and the conceptual ocean. for example, the shark is made of guilt and shame and fears, etc. although these passages serve their purpose in explaining this rather complex idea and help the reader with the necessary verisimilitude required for this book, its as if the book cant decide if its supposed to be an abstract way of looking at otherwise intangible ideas or if it is just using this method as a platform from which to launch an otherwise ordinary piece of genre fiction. or both. it is as if the author had this great idea (sea of ideas, sharks made of negative concepts) but felt like doing something MORE with it (writing a novel about a guy trying to hunt the shark). because of this confusion, it made the book seem like it was having an identity crisis.
ANYWAY that being said, there were some very memorable passages, especially towards the end when they are going through a labyrinth made entirely of paper. and the story was interesting and entertaining enough to put the above criticisms aside and just enjoy it.

Monday, October 05, 2009

The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks

so after spending the better part of the summer shunning my beloved young adult fiction and trying to branch out a little, i found myself without any library books to my name, nothing on the reserve list, and no ideas. so of course, of course, i found myself browsing in young adult. and this is what i found. The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks is the account of miss frankie's hijinks at her super fancy expensive prep school. specifically, there is a secret society (of course) that has been around for decades (of course) and only boys are allowed in (of course) even though the school has been coed for ages. so frankie gets a little pissed that shes being excluded for no reason, especially when she realises that her preppy, older, popular and much coveted boyfriend is the leader of said club. not to mention the fact that all of the pranks that the club has pulled recently have been really lame. so with a little smooth identity theft, frankie manages to start running the club in secret, and her ideas are so good, no one bothers looking into why the club management has gotten so strange.
this book was a fresh coming of age tale, without all of the obvious cliché. it is written in such a way as to be relevant to today's teens, which unfortunately is not always the case. i also enjoyed how the book didnt go in the direction of the "woe is me, im so rich and have an unfillable void in my life" as so many of these types of books do. anyway, i must admit, it has been a few weeks since i read this book and almost as long since i started this review, so i dont really remember what i wanted to say about it. i can say that i enjoyed it and it was a nice, fun read for any age.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Holidays on Ice

so after curse of the spellmans, i read a book of short stories edited by david sedaris, which i am n0t going to review, because, well, whats the point. they were short, they were stories. anyway, so then i moved on to holidays on ice which was actually WRITTEN by david sedaris. and i am happy to report, holidays on ice was just as hilarious as expected. this book is a collection of sedaris' "essays" (im still not completely sure why they are called essays, i suppose for wont of a better word) all related to holidays, including, but not exclusively christmas. the only downside to this collection is that most of the pieces have already been published in sedaris' other work. one of which i had already read in when you are engulfed in flames. the reason this is a downside is because i have most, if not all of sedaris' other books on hold at the library, and so by reading holidays on ice i have taken a little bit away from reading his other stuff. that being said, holidays on ice has a couple of previously unpublished "essays" and even when i do end up reading the other ones over again, it wont matter, because david sedaris is so very funny, he is worth reading twice. anyway, holidays on ice touches on things like when sedaris found himself working as a thirty three year old elf at bloomingdales. or when his sister had to rescue a whore at thanksgiving. all sorts of fun stuff. as always (well, "always" in this case doesnt mean much, because ive only read one other of sedaris' books) sedaris is hilarious and insightful, lending a voice to the kind of cynicsm and running commentary we all struggle so hard to articulate. if ever you need a laugh, sedaris is your man.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Curse of the Spellmans

so then i read the next installment of the spellman files, titled curse of the spellmans. (see earlier review of the spellman files). once again, we are joined by this odd ball family of private investigators, with isabel remaining our faithful narrator. i think this book took place about a year after the first book finished, but it doesnt really matter. anyway, this time, isabel is staying with henry stone, the detective who handled her sister's disappearance, because she got kicked out of her apartment. her sister and henry are best friends, which is odd, because the sister, rae, is 15 and henry is like, 47 or something. anyway isabel is trying to clear up several mysteries. 1) why is her dad suddenly taking care of his health? 2) why is her brother moping and why has his wife (isabel's best friend) has left town? 3) why does rae suddenly have friends other than henry? 4) why is her mother vandalising some random motorbike? 5)why is her neighbour so suspicious, and why does he seem to have a connection to two missing women? and 6) who is behind the vandalism of some woman's yard? not only that, but why is the vandalism exact replication of the vandalism isabel herself committed against the same woman 15 years prior? (mystery number six is the only one isabel has actually been HIRED to investigate. the others are just due to her impulse control problem and over arching, prominent suspicion of everyone).
anyway, the hijinks are back, and once again lutz has managed to avoid falling into the genre fiction trap. definitely worth the read.

The Rapture

ok comrades, i am way behind on book reviews, so here we go. a couple of weeks ago, i finished the rapture by liz jensen. this book was excellent, if not a little frightening, given how very very possible the storyline is. this book takes place in the not so distant future, where global warming has become even more unbearable than it already is. the main character is gabrielle, a french-canadian (?) parapelegic art-therapist who is starting her first job since her accident at a high security psychiatric facility for dangerous juveniles. her most interesting and dangerous client is bethany, who killed her mother with a screwdriver when she was eight (i think, its been a few weeks since i read the book) and has been in lockdown ever since. at the time of our reading, bethany is now sixteen (i think) and still refuses to talk about the incident with her mother. she has however taken a liking to electroschock therapy, as she feels that the volts enable her to correctly predict natural disasters. of course no one really believes her, but gabrielle starts to notice she does have an uncanny knack for being right. on top of all this, there is a huge group of people who are part of the "faith wave" who are hard core evangelical right-wing Christians who sit around waiting for the rapture all the time. in a somewhat predictable but necessary twist, bethany's father (who refuses to visit her in the facility) is a major minister of the faith wave. anyway, long story short, bethany ends up predicting this massive, massive natural disaster that could knock out most of europe and probably more. (the story takes place in england). eventually gabrielle starts believing in bethany's predictions and then she and her newly acquired physicist boyfriend are trying to make people believe that the disaster is coming, and of course the faith wave people think that they are going to be raptured before hand.
this book is well written and exciting, but as i said, a little frightening. (not to mention i was distracted by all sorts of negative thoughts like, would dave still love me if i was paraplegic?) the only negative thing i have to say about it, is the story is written in the first person, from gabrielle's point of view, and she drags out telling you stuff in an effort to surprise you, but its so friggin obvious from the very beginning. (example: the fact that she is in a wheelchair). also there is this really irritating section of the book where she thinks that the physicist is cheating on her and he so obviously isnt and it is so distracting, because all you can think about is how stupid she is not to see that and have trouble getting through the plot-related stuff. anyway, i suppose i can forgive this because the bonus of having a first person narrative is that the narrator is imperfect and flawed and only sees things the way she wants to. or whatever. anyway, if you want a thought provoking but disturbing read, this is the way to go.

Monday, September 28, 2009

I Could Have Used Some More Sleep Last Night

well comrades, i had a good idea for a blogging topic, but that was like two hours ago, and now i cant for the life of me remember what it was *sigh* anyway, today there is a "wind warning" and it is very gusty. i cant decide if i want to keep up with my book reviews or not... i havent had a chance to do them for the last 4 books that ive read. maybe i will go to the school some time this week and do all four. i dont know. man im so pissed that i cant remember what i was going to write about. maybe i should start writing my blogs down on paper and then transcribing them. that might be an idea. although in my own defense, i am very spaced out today. so im forgetting all things equally. anyway, if it comes to me, i will blog about it. i cant believe how bad this post is going. i think im distracted because im trying to think of an original piece i could do for the cbc literary awards this year. i didnt do one last year but i think id like to. maybe i should write that story ive been thinking about for a while called "giving up the ghost" i also wonder if perhaps i should read some of the winners from previous years to see what sort of writing wins or would actually be competitive... but i fear that would just result in my trying to emulate someone elses style, which would just be stupid..... *sigh*

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Downtown Owl

so this morning i finished downtown owl by chuck klosterman. i was so into it i was late for work because i didnt want to leave the house without finishing it. this is yet another from the mcnally robinson flyer. this book was AWESOME. it was genuinely hilarious but also strangely moving. its about a little town in north dakota that gets hit by this unexpected and brutal blizzard that kills 20 people. the book chronicles the lives of three totally unrelated people who dont even really know each other in the months leading up to the blizzard. it is SO cool. anyway, im not going to get into all the details, but what i realised once i finished it is that what this book is really about is how we read articles in the newspapers about tragedies and stuff, but we just think wow that sucks. and we dont think about the reality of the fact that one of those people suffering might be a young teacher who has a drinking problem but only in the most hilarious sense of the phrase. or an old man who may or may not have killed his wife for merciful reasons. or a young boy who hates his football coach and is saddened and proud of the fact that his younger sister is probably the best football player in the state. anyway, this book was un-fucking-believable. it was that good. really.

School Year's Resolutions

alright comrades, for anyone who is still marginally interested in my life instead of what books im reading, here is the update. as of this morning, i have decided to stop drinking during the week. this is officially a weekend only activity (with the exception of the occasional beer at barbs, but that doesnt happen very often). in addition, i am getting my fat ass back in the pool as of monday... possibly sooner. im heading over to the mcmaster website directly to check the swimming schedule. i want my body and mental health back, and by jove, im going to get it!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Panic In Level 4

alright, so here we have yet another book from the mcnally robinson insert. this book is by robert preston, who wrote the hot zone which is the true account of the ebola virus. if i am not mistaken, the hot zone was the inspiration for the movie OUTBREAK with dustin hoffmann. anyway, so preston is a nonfiction/sciency/journalismy type of guy and this book is a collection of a few of his articles that have been dressed up and revamped and updated a little for the book. in general, this book was excellent. i thought it was brave of him to start with the article about the brothers chudnovsky, who built a super computer and were able to calculate pi to over 2 billion digits, a world record. i found this to be one of the best articles in the book, but i think a lot of people would pass on the book because of it, since i have found that the sweeping majority of the population has a strange aversion to mathematics. (?)
i would recommend this book to pretty much anyone with half a brain, and i was impressed that he did very little over explaining of basic scientific concepts for the lay person, which i was prepared to tolerate and not looking forward to. the only other thing i really have to say about it is it really should have a warning on the jacket or something because some of the topics get a little graphic and gruesome... not to mention some of the photos. (example: photo of a guy who has a disease that caused him to eat off his own lips and rip out his own teeth). BUT if you can handle that sort of thing, it is a very interesting, well written and overall absorbing read.

American Nerd

so this is american nerd by benjamin nugent, the next installment from the titles i gleaned from the mcnally robinson insert in my walrus magazine last month. (sadly, there was no insert this month). anyway, this book is about the history of what a nerd is and how it came to be that this is a "type" of person that we all know and recognise. then it goes on to reflect on why people become nerds and what it is that unites nerds and there are some funny anecdotes relating this topic to nugent's past. the book was interesting, at times amusing, and well written, but it was more akin to something that would be on the required reading list for a cultural studies course. not so much leisure reading, at least not for me. anyway, if you're looking to tickle your brain and have a penchant for nerds and/or history, this book is for you.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Coffee Angels

well, the P.A.M.'s where anne and i go for coffee all the time "renovated" and got new lighting above where the baristas work. and it makes them look like they are glowing from within, and the features of their faces actually appear more defined than they used to. and i told them that they looked like they had descended upon us from another world to bestow us with heavenly cofffee. and as i sat there drinking my tea and looking at them, i thought, there are my little coffee angels. a sweet little piece of the divine.

My Holden Caulfield Moment

well, i have to admit its been a long time since this happened, but on monday evening, i totally had a holden caulfield moment. dave and i were on the subway, on our way to visit trevor for his birthday (happy birthday trevor! wooo!) and there was this very well dressed, good looking, well built man reading a book. and he was drinking a happy meal carton of milk. with a straw. and i just thought it was the most amazing and beautiful piece of humanity i had seen in forever. and i dont think i will ever forget it.

When You Are Engulfed In Flames

so this weekend i read when you are engulfed in flames by david sedaris. apparently, i am even more out of touch with popular culture than i thought i was, because after googling around for this image and some contact info to write him, i learned that he is, in fact, rather famous. i was unaware of this, but i can see why because this book is both excellent and hilarious.
when you are engulfed in flames was the next installment on my list of titles i got from that robinson-mcnally flyer that came with my walrus magazine. the jacket flap bills it as "a book of essays," which is a sort of loose definition. basically, this is the book we all wish we could write and make a living off of. mr. sedaris has basically written a bunch of musings, observations and reflections upon various events in his life. the result is both interesting and insightful, as well as being totally hilarious. if only we could all be captivating enough for people to be interested in our thoughts on quitting smoking or naming spiders that live in our windows. i would highly recommend this book to anyone, and i intend to read his other work once i get through this little reading list ive created from the robinson-mcnally flier.

Friday, September 04, 2009

The Night of the Gun

so i finally finished the night of the gun this morning, and it took me much longer than most books do. this was in part due to the fact that my mother and sister were visiting, so i wasnt reading as much this week as usual, but it was mostly due to the writing. this is not a negative comment, its just that this book was a bit more of a thinker and the writing style was quite unlike most books that i read. i think this is because the author, david carr, is a lifetime journalist. but ill get to that in a minute.
this book was very unique in a genre where being unique is damn near impossible. it is a story of a recovering crack/coke addict/alcoholic and his journey from addiction to recovery, relapse and beyond. what makes this version of a tired story so different is that david carr, being a journalist, decided to INVESTIGATE the details of his own demise by doing research and interviews, treating his own tragic life history like another article he was about to write. in so doing, he was trying to reconcile his own version of events with those of the people in his life. the idea is, i suppose, that the truth is somewhere in between. as such, the whole book kind of osillates between reading like a newspaper article and reading like some sort of university essay waxing eloquence about memory and truth. this is what made the reading a little difficult at times, but you have to admire carr's dedication in providing us with the most realistic account and truthful information he could find.
carr transisitons seamlessly between the past and present, holding the reader's interest. he manages to make this story not just one about addiction and recovery, but an analysis of the nature of memory and perception, truth and recollection. rather than taking us through the past journey of his addiction and recovery, the book feels more like hes taking us through the journey of self realisation and discovery that he didnt see coming when he decided to research and write this book. as such, the book is a stand alone in a genre that has been done to death, and it is definitely worth a read. but be prepared to spend a lot of time on it.

Monday, August 31, 2009

The Spellman Files

so once i got through the appeal i picked up the spellman files, which i had read about in the mcnally robinson insert that came with my walrus magazine this month. i was interested in it because it was supposed to be funny. it was, but not quite as laugh your ass off funny as some of the other books ive read. that being said, i really enjoyed this book. it was super original and well written. also, since there are at least two more of the same series, it was in very great danger of being crappy genre fiction, but it wasnt.

so. the spellman files is about this family of private investigators. with the exception of the eldest child, everyone, including the drunken uncle and 14 year old daughter are private investigators. since this family's raison d'etre is snooping in other people's business, they are all immensly paranoid and obsessed with their own privacy. they are also all obsessed with each other's personal lives, which lends more credence to said paranoia.

anyway the story is told from the point of view of the middle child, isabel, and it is her version of the events leading up to her sister'ss disappearance. at the time of her telling us about it, her sister is still missing and no one knows why. what follows is a hilarious tale of a family that doesnt know how to love without being nosy. this book is well thought out, well written, and i look forward to reading the sequels.

The Appeal

so last week i read the appeal, the first john grisham book i have read in years. when i was younger i read the client and the runaway jury and i got about half way through the partner before i decided i had just about had enough of john grisham. for starters, there is only so much legal intrigue a person can take and secondly, i just find his plethora of characters a little superfluous and frustrating. anyway, the reason i started reading a john grisham, despite my inclination not to is because i had finished the book i was reading (sympathy, as discussed earlier) while i was at daves, and i didnt bring a new book and was getting antsy with nothing to read. especially because it was sunday morning and dave was still asleep, which is what usually happens on sunday mornings. anyway, so i scoured his apartment looking for something to read and i found the appeal. i knew i wasnt going to particularly like or dislike this book, but it got the job done, and it was just interesting enough for me to finish it.
so. the appeal. this book is about a couple of lawyers who successfully sue a giant corporate chemical manufacturer who have been illegally dumping toxins into a valley for years. the toxins have penetrated the aquifer that supplies water to a small town nearby and so the people in the town are dropping like flies from the cancer. anyway so the jury finds them guilty and awards the plaintiff damages to the tune of 41 million dollars. this obviously carries certain ramifications because if the award is upheld on appeal, it sets a precedent for everyone ELSE in the town to sue the company for millions of dollars. SO the company is appealing the decision.
since the owner of the company is evil, he gets in touch with this company who will basically fix an election for the supreme court for the low low price of 8 million dollars. he pays them, they set up a candidate who will win the election and vote in his favour when the appeal comes before the supreme court. the bulk of the book is about this election and the ways in which big business (or anyone else with deep pockets) can manipulate the electoral process in order to have elected officials who will vote in their best interests. the whole thing is pretty disgusting and evil and just makes this canadian reader feel oh-so-smug because we dont elect our judges here in the great white north.
as with most of john grisham's other works, the appeal is very technical and tedious, but i have to give him credit for addressing this issue, because it is a serious one. the fact that there are states who elect their jurists leaves an already flawed justice system open to further corruption. the great tragedy of the so-called american dream is that despite its touting claims of anyone being able to do anything they want, it has manifested itself as a distinctly class driven society where the rich and privileged can do what ever they want, and the poor suffer for it. it is frightening to think that this blight of american civilisation could (or maybe does) penetrate the justice system, which is supposed to be unbiased. if someone doesnt sit up and reform this system, all americans will ultimately be at the mercy of big business and its whims. which is not only unjust, it is inhumane.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Never Thought I'd See The Day

that i was frustrated with bees. you see, bees are my third-favourite animal, and i have always been a staunch defender and rescuer of bees. indeed, my comrades when i worked at the bar thought i was insane, climbing all over the kitchen to retrieve bees and put them outside so that they wouldnt be killed. anyway, without digressing into an explanation as to why i love bees so much, i must admit i never thought id see the day but i have. in case you arent aware (and in case i am incorrect, i got the following information from barb, so you can blame her for any wrong-ness) apparently because the winter was so mild (?) more queen bees survived the winter than usual and so the bee population is larger than usual. i also suspect that the garbage strike in toronto that lasted for the first six weeks of summer didnt do anything but exacerbate this situation. anyway, so theres a noticeable increase in the number of bees flying around hamilton. normally i would find this cause for celebration, but unfortunately, these bees (wasps, too) seem (to me anyway) to be very aggressive. theyre always all up in my business. and im like, yo, dawg, im not a flower. anyway so far i have avoided being stung but well see how the rest of "bee season" plays out.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


so ive decided that since i read so many books, i might as well start reviewing some of them. last weekend, i finished this book, sympathy, by dede crane. ms. crane is a canadian writer who was shortlisted for the cbc literary awards (i think in 2006 but im not sure) a very prestigious competition that i entered in 2007 and was NOT shortlisted for. anyway, she was also a professional dancer at one point, but as is the case with professional dancers, she is now retired. anyway. this book was pretty excellent. her dance background shone through because the main character is a retired dancer and the whole time i was reading it i thought my sister would probably like it, because the dancer's relationship with her own body because of dance is a fundamental theme in the work. anyway, the story is about this woman, the aforementioned dancer, who has post traumatic stress disorder because she lost her husband and her son in a car wreck and shes gone all catatonic. so her mother has taken her to this private clinic where shes recieving this cutting edge and somewhat controversial treatment called psychokinetic therapy or something. anyway i wont give much more detail than that.
that being said, the book is impressively written and very engaging. the only thing i didnt like about it was how her doctor was sleeping with his receptionist and she was kind of a slut bag but also totally into him and he wasnt really into her and he was kind of a dick about it. but as you learn by the end of the book thats all intentional because he has a big stick up his ass, not to mention some serious mommy issues, as all therapists do. also the main characters mother was very shallow to the point of being irritating, but this was also done on purpose, so its more a testament to the book being good rather than bad, even though it was so very very irritating. anyway i have to cut this review short because im about to run out of time on the computer, but i will certainly give more time to the next one.


well comrades, im sure i speak for all of us when i say that i think we are losing hope of my ever recieving the wedding photos from callie or the photos from trevor that i wanted. and, to add insult to injury, i am now waiting on a third set of photos (also from callie) from the family get together we had in stratford. alack and alas. and my poor blog has been neglected because of all this painful waiting. as i pointed out a while ago, i was hoping to blog about all of these events shortly after they happened, so i wasnt wanting to blog in between, in order to maintain some semblance of consistent chronology, but apparently i need to give up on that plan. because it would appear that i am never going to recieve the pictures i asked for, at least not any time soon.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


so ive been looking for work, and youll never believe that CSIS (like the canadian CIA, as in SPIES) actually has job postings advertised on the internet. lol. who'd have thunk? if only i could relate this information back to my high school self... you see, back in high school, kate and i were rather obsessed with CSIS and were always claiming that seemingly innocuous or abandoned offices belonged to CSIS. and there they are, with a website just like everyone else. HMMPH. way to go, canadian spies... although i bet theyre going to find this post and then track me down and then make me disappear into thin air for criticising them. well if thats the case, let me say goodbye cruel world......

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Long Weekend

well comrades im back in the hammer after this past long weekend and let me tell you, it was super relaxing. it was so relaxing, in fact, that i had absolutely no desire for it to end. going back to work after a nice and much needed long weekend is like getting splashed by a puddle when it isnt even raining. or something like that. anyway, with all of the running around and nonsense that dave and i had to take care of prior to my uncles wedding (sidebar: im sorry i havent blogged about that, i am STILL waiting for photos from the sister unit before i do so. which by the way is totally messing up the chronology of my blog. thanks alot, callie.) we really needed a chance to chill out. and that is exactly what we did. the only blips on the radar were taking his dad to a visitation for a family friend who died and then the subsequent shitshow of buying his parents groceries and cooking them dinner, but other than that we did almost nothing. and it was FANTASTIC. and thats all i have to say about that.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Back To Our Regular Programme

so, comrades... sorry i havent posted in a few days. there are two reasons for this: 1) today is the first day i have been to the library this week, because i have been busy with mundane things like buying groceries and doing laundry (i love my job) and 2) i must admit i was waiting for my sister and trevor to send me the photos i requested, because i still want to blog about the subject of said photos. anyway, i still havent heard back from either of them, and i know trevor is heading out to montreal for the weekend, so it will be next week at the earliest, methinks. unless callie sends hers along tonite, but whatever, it doesnt even matter.
anyway, now that im all distracted by this pointless explanation that isnt even interesting, i forget what i actually planned to write about. i dont know whats gotten into me lately, but i feel like i keep forgetting EVERYTHING. i dont recall ever being this scatterbrained, and i cant possibly imagine why this is happening. my only guess is that i just have so much on my mind and i am so busy that its making me forgetful. i dont know if that is actually possible, but lets run with it.

Rhetorical Question


Monday, July 27, 2009


well ive been sitting here for like an hour and a half doing crosswords trying to come up with something to blog about. this is the problem with not having the internet at my house, i cant just blog whenever the mood strikes me. for example, last time i blogged about the dead weather concert, i was actually planning to do three separate posts because i had three different things to talk about, but i ran out of time and now i cant remember what the other two are. besides, even if i could, im not as pumped up or excited as i was at the time so even if i did remember what i was going to write about, the posts wouldnt be as good as they would have last week. so there you go.
anyway, im going to put off blogging about my uncle's wedding until i get the pictures, so callie if you could send them along id appreciate it and if you could ask mum to send hers along i would also appreciate it.
i guess i could talk about going out with kyle and trevor on friday, but there isnt that much to say. *sigh* why am i so boring? im beginning to think its because i dont have a camera. but its probably because im just boring. sorry comrades, i dont have much today.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Chloé Loves Dave

well this past wednesday, my main man dave took me to see THE DEAD WEATHER aka JACK WHITE'S NEW BAND!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! anyway, it goes without saying that it was AWESOME. awesome of the awesome-awesomeness variety. that boy makes me so happy. and so does dave. anyway, the only thing i really have to say about it without actually REVIEWING the concert is that the reason i have an interminable love affair with my beloved jack is because his music speaks to me like nothing else does. the day of the concert, i had a very physical day, and my legs and back were killing me. i was also totally exhausted. but as soon as jack stepped on the stage, all of my discomfort and preoccupation disappeared. and for two blissful hours, the only thing i could think about was how much i love his music. it completely absorbs me and consumes me and while im listening to jack and reeling from being in the same room as him, breathing his oxygen, i am not myself, im not anyone or anything i am just the music, and nothing can touch me or hurt me and nothing and no one else can make me feel that way.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

And Speaking of Trannies

oh, speaking of trannies, we learned this weekend that apparently my story about getting yelled at by the tranny from zelda's is worth ten bucks. i was explaining this story to shayla while dave and i were out with her (welcome back shayla! it was soooooo good to see you!), which by the way, i dont even think its a very good story, which is why i never mentioned it on here when it happened, and some guy sitting on the patio thought it was so funny, he bought us a pitcher of beer. so there you go. i will be telling this story loudly in bars for years to come, in hopes of scoring more free beer.

Women's Sandals

well comrades, just when you think it all, hamilton manages to introduce you to yet another character, someone even stranger than you could have imagined. today i will be discussing the man in the women's sandals.
so for the last, i dont know, maybe two weeks, there has been this man making his presence known in jackson square and the library, who i have thought of in my head as the man in women's sandals. anyway, he wears women's sandals and some feminine looking beads and disheveled clothing that ranges from gender to gender. the strange thing is, he isnt like a regular transvestite or drag queen, because he isnt dressed up like a woman or trying to come across as a woman, hes just wearing a few select pieces of women's clothing. anyway, i had noticed him aruond, and he was a new addition to the wonderful cast of characters here at the library, but i never really thought anything of it until i had a conversation with him.
last week, after i finished posting about having the afternoon off due to weather, i went out on the roof of jackson square to have a cigarette. the man in women's sandals came up to me and bummed a smoke and then didnt actually light it, which i took to be his way of seeing if i was safe to talk to. when he discovered that i was, in fact, safe to talk to, he started talking. he started telling me about how the people at the library are always kicking him out because of his clothing (doubtful, i think he tries to provoke them into kicking him out) and how they called him a faggot (really doubtful) and how everyone in hamilton is so rude to him because they think hes a faggot and hes black and he just went on and on and on about his whole persecution complex over being black and gay. i listened quietly, because i could tell he was just a mentally ill homeless guy with strange delusions of racism/homophobia but he was pretty interesting. so there you go. i just wish i could have gleaned this information without having to hand over a cigarette.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


so i was a little pissed when i found out my beloved jack had started a third band.... i want another white stripes album! stop starting new bands! but then i read this article in spin magazine and this new band, the dead weather, sounds AWESOME. also jack said a new white stripes album should be out in the next year, so i felt placated. anyway, other than waxing eloquence about jacks OBVIOUS greatness, i will just leave you all with this fabulous, fabulous quote. if you cant see why i love him, then i guess we arent all that close.
"we're all struggling with the trouble that this industry is in right now. and its not about sales; its about beauty and romance and a relationship to art thats turning invisible, and its affecting peoples perception of music. its affecting whether they think of it as a viable art, because its so fucking disposable. its not about being modern or retro or a luddite or being hopeful or pessimistic about the future; its about clinging on to what makes sense of our lives, and what gives our lives value, and what gives us a commonality and a feeling of belonging."
-jack white III

Monday, July 20, 2009

St Clair

we were leaving a coffee shop on st clair street west
and there was a dying bird on the table
i guess it flew into a window
and i looked at him trying not to cry
because he hates to see anything suffer
and he knows he cant fix the world
but he sure would like to try
and later that day it started to rain
and i thought of that bird on st clair street west
spending its last minutes in the rain
and i looked at him and i tried not to cry
because i hate to see him suffer
and i know i cant tell him i will fix the world
but i sure would like to try

Friday, July 17, 2009

Afternoon Off Due to Weather

so im thinking im going to make some turnip for lunch. and i need to do dishes and call canada revenue (yikes!). at least i'll get to go to daves earlier....
i feel like i should be using this opportunity to write a really great blog, but to be honest im kind of drawing a blank. i kind of wish callie had put up a new picture on girls wearing glasses so i could write about that.
i left my bicycle lock on the bus last night and didnt realise until i was almost at my client's this morning so i had to borrow her crappy lock and now im standing here obsessing about it and worried about my jack getting stolen, so i think i should just cash my chips and leave.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Uh, Your Momma?

kyle bailey.
i got a very strange message from your mother this week, saying shes sorry she "missed my call while {she} was away" and that she is now finally returning it. i have absolutely no idea what shes talking about so if you could shed some light on the subject i would appreciate it. in other bailey family phone related incompetence, you left me a two minute message last week of clanking and clunking, not unlike the sound of a cell phone accidentally calling someone from inside a knapsack. time for you and telecommunications to have a little break i think.

I Am Confused

ok so my sister filled out some sort of survey on her blog and "tagged" me to do it... im not sure where i recieved said "tag" but i guess ill do it anyway because i dont have anything better to do. in other news, callie and i have FINALLY gotten our blog up and running and it no longer looks ugly, thanks to callie. so check it out when you get a chance. its called girls wearing glasses on the sidebar.

1. What is your current obsession? Batman and Graphic Novels

2. What is your weirdest obsession? Batman and Graphic Novels

3. Recall a fond childhood memory? This is a question? Holy incorrect interrogative, batman. anyway, speaking of batman, i guess a fond childhood memory of mine would be when my dad gave me my first batman poster... the michael keaton 1989 one from the tim burton movie. he hung it on my wall and i looked upon its obvious greatness, and thought, this is the perfect man.

4. What’s for dinner? shit i dont know. its ten to twelve on thursday morning. probably a sub or something.

5. What would you eat for your last meal? this is a very morbid question and i dont want to answer it.

6. What’s the last thing you bought? cigarettes. this thing is making me look even more boring than i thought i am.

7. What are you listening to right now? the never ending jackhammer sound from inside the bowels of the library as they continue this mysterious renovation.

8. What do you think of the person who tagged you? my sister is beautiful and talented and i think shes also kind of pissed at me for calling her pathetic even though i was just kidding around

9. If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished, anywhere in the world, where would it be? probably on a mountain. or a farm. or a farm on a mountain. i could farm goats or eidelweiss or something

10. If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go? back to bed.

11. Which language do you want to learn? russian i guess. i took the introductory course at school...its pretty tricky stuff

12. What’s your favourite quote (for now)? "That would pretty much be my ideal: eating pie, smoking and having sex in the rain." by trevor.

13.What is your favourite colour? Red

14. What is your favourite piece of clothing in your own wardrobe? I guess my red hat. Or my red dress,

15. What is your dream job? Paediatrician. Or anything that involves being in the woods, collecting samples for a lab. or being michael phelps' girlfriend.

16.What’s your favourite magazine? the walrus

17. If you had $100 now, what would you spend it on? bills.

18. Describe your personal style? is this a fashion question? i wear red and black.
19. What are you going to do after this? i have some more internet stuff to do and then im taking anne swimming

20. What are your favourite films? batman, batman begins, batman returns, the dark knight, waydowntown, amadeus... look at my profile

21. What’s your favorite fruit? cherries

22.What inspires you? my clients and the natural world (see old post: why i study biology)

23. Your favourite books? the catcher in the rye, a prayer for owen meany, anything by paulo cohelo.... look at my profile

24. Do you collect anything? batman toys, children/teen novels, elephants, pieces of useless information, problems

25. Any advice from bitter experience? i feel like most of my experience is bitter. how about people with intellectual disabilities have feelings and they can understand what you are saying about them, you asshole. also SHARE THE ROAD WITH CYCLISTS

26. What makes you follow a blog? if its funny and creative and does something different. or if the writing is exceptional.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


so believe it or not, i think i figured out what my problem is. whenever i try to pick out a new book to read, which believe it or not is almost every day, it takes me forever because im always looking for the perfect book. particularly this week because last week i read like ten or twelve really disturbing graphic novels. so i was looking for something upbeat but not too, how shall i say? crappy. anyway, so i did find one book a couple of days ago that worked out pretty good but generally i have problems finding new books and end up borrowing books ive already read. i think this makes me some kind of snob. i also always feel like the paper back section is trashy and im afraid i might run into someone i know while im in it. which is also kind of snobby. if not, at least a little i missed my medication-ey. anyway i had planned on writing a more elaborate post about this but i only have three minutes left on this internet station. and ive basically forgotten most of what i wanted to say. *sigh*

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

O Canada

you know comrades, i think im in a rut. ever since i started blogging again after my long silence i think i have been reusing post titles, including this one. i guess im going to have to tap into the creative well... or something. anyway, so although its about two weeks past its relevance, i feel i should follow up the post about my day with trevor with a post about my day with dave. we are all good communists here, after all. sadly, i have no pictures from our adventure, which is really a shame, since i think we would have gotten some good ones. perhaps some day one of us will have a digital camera. *sigh* but i digress.
so dave and i had big plans to bike from his place down to the lakeshore, which is approximately a 16k trip going directly down the regular roads. this wasnt our plan, however. we were taking this long and winding path along the don river, which was very scenic and nice, but EASILY added 10k to the trip each way.
anyway, as i mentioned in my post about my day with trevor, it was supposed to rain on tuesday and wednesday, so i was a little apprehensive that my great cycling adventure would be ruined. lucky for me, the people at the weather network are actually on hard drugs all the time and feel no motivation whatsoever to forecast the weather correctly, so the rain held off.
so we went on this super long bike ride and it was lots of fun and i brought leftover chinese food for my snacky-poo and it was definitely too long and hard for dave because hes not quite the cyclist i am..... i would have done it in about 3 and a half hours by myself, and it took us about 5, not including the long break we took when we finally got there, but im not judging. we all know that if anything, i ride too much. and i guess that was that.
in other news, i had this totally random message on my voice mail from kyles mum... she said she was returning my call from when she was away.... i have no clue what thats about. i dont remember calling her..........WEIRD

Tuesday, June 30, 2009


so i took a mini vacation this week, one day to hang out with trevor, one day to hang out with dave for canada day. here are the highlights from my day with trevor.

here i am shopping for bicycle tubes at canadian tire.... always a disappointing experience for cyclists

here is a sudden picture trevor took whilst we waited for a light to change on our super long walking adventure
here i am at the patio at jack astors. i have to say i think this is one of the best pictures trevor has ever taken. not because its of me but i just think the composition is amazing

here is the beer we drank at jack astors. canadian. what a treat for a pauper like me. also i just realised, very appropriate, considering that this is my canada day holiday.

this is the picture of the ashtray that i had trevor take to commemorate the guy who was high on blow who needed to put his cigarette out in our ashtray for some reason. im sure riding the white wave, it makes sense

this is me looking at the menu. i must admit, i was posing because i wanted to have an action shot. although looking at a menu isnt that active
this is trevor at jack astors
this is a picture of the ketchup bottle from jack astors. i have decided that taking a picture of ketchup bottles at restaurants is going to be trevor and my new hobby
this is a picture i took of the menu at jack astors to commemorate our feast on garlic bread, beer and pizza.
this is the view of the cn tower that i had from the balcony at jack astors. its a cool balcony because its very high up in the air
this is me modelling the amazing deals we got on clearance underwear at sears. yay sears
this is me drinking tea at starbucks. its funny because the paper cup is like as big as my head. it looks even bigger because of the perspective.
this is trevor at starbucks. it took me two tries to get this shot because he was talking while i was trying to take the picture

i took this picture of the chairs across the way from starbucks because they were very bright red. and i liked them. also we realised that this establishment was also an espresso bar and we should have tried going there instead of starbucks. but at least theres next time
and this is a picture of the quotes on the starbucks cups. so there it is comrades. my day of fun in the sun (it didnt rain even though it was supposed to) with trevor

Take Me Out to the Ball Game

well id have to say that this post is for all of you who dont really understand what the hell im talking about when i tell you about my job. last monday, i had to take J----- to his first ever challenger baseball game. now, sabrina has been on the challenger baseball team since she was like six, so i have been to many, many of the games. there are also a couple of kids in the league that i worked with briefly but not anymore. anyway, J----- and his parents had never even been to one of the games, so when his mother told me to make sure he didnt do any sliding, i laughed and said, have you ever been to one of these games? trust me, there is no sliding. its like, slow motion baseball.
anyway, so J----- is very physically fragile. basically, he cant fall. ever. because if he fell on his back he could break the rod in his back that is correcting his spine and if he fell on his front he could injure his internal organs. that being said, hes like any other nine year old boy, and hes always been interested in sports and wishes he could play football or soccer, but obviously his disabilities prevent him from doing so. SO it was SO COOL to be working with him at his first baseball game, because once he got over his initial shyness, he just totally opened up and you could see how much he was enjoying playing an organised team sport. you could see he was totally buzzed out to be playing and participating, and it was such a cool experience for me to have a hand in giving him that experience, and it was such an honour for me to be able to share it with him.
i guess what im saying is that even though it seems like my job is vague and random and pays poorly, its times like this that make it worth it. and it has given me so many moments like this, and so many people never come close to having that kind of connection or experience with another person, and i get to have these experiences all the time... so in so many ways i am blessed to be doing what i do. and i guess i cant really explain it any better than that.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Your City's a Sucker, My City's a Creep

greetings comrades. i have been meaning to do this post for some time, but i have been putting it off because i didnt want to do it in a rush. however, the recent comment from rosie dimanno of the toronto star (whose articles i quite enjoy) that hamilton is a 'dump' has forced my hand. also, allow me to preface what i am about to say by acknowledging that i am not the first hamiltonian to write on this issue and from this perspective. i am sure there are many hamilton writers and artists who have done what i am about to do long ago, and probably better. so here we go.
as much as i would like to sit here and bash torontonians for thinking that toronto is the only city in this fine country that matters, i am going to take the high road and not even go there. rather, i am going to talk about how citizens from other cities (im looking at you, TORONTO) have a completely inaccurate, although vaguely understandable perspective on hamilton. and here it is.
if you dont live here and you come to visit, this is what you see: dilapidated buildings, abandoned, boarded up stores, an almost ephemeral greyness that never stops, pollution, babies having babies, drug addicts and dealers, and all forms of riff raff imaginable. is all of this here? yes. but oh, so much more.
only in hamilton can you strike up a conversation with a bus driver without being ordered to shut up and get behind the yellow line. only in hamilton do perfect strangers have chats like old friends. there is so much camraderie here, and i dont see it anywhere else (im looking at you, TORONTO). hamilton is a low income, blue collar town. everyone is on their last leg and just trying to keep on keeping on. this brings the people together. it sounds depressing, but it isnt. hamiltonians have a collective drive to survive and can have a laugh and a beer while doing it. and you cant see that just walking down the street. because of the struggle and strife in hamilton, there is a diverse and fully inclusive arts community, and it seems like everyone here is like minded. so you know what, all of you temporary visitors who cant see past the first impression (im looking at you, TORONTO) im glad youre just temporary, because we dont need your ilk polluting our cultural milleux. so stick that in your pipe and smoke it. the crackhouse is just round the bend.

Monday, June 08, 2009


well well well, my good and noble comrades i have a question to end the ages. is there a limit to creative license??? i think there is. i have to admit this post is vaguely inspired by my fathers attempt to get a bad poetry contest going. (check out the as yet incomplete website at anyway, there is this song by live called all over you which is super catchy and great to listen to whilst doing dishes, but really doesnt even attempt to make any sense. here are the lyrics:
our love is like water
pinned down and abused
for being strange
our love is no other
than me alone
for me all day
our love is like water/angels
pinned down and abused
all over you all over me
the sun the fields the sky
I've often tried to hold the sea
the sun the fields the tide
pay me now lay me down
comrades, im not even kidding. those are the lyrics to the song. now, im not a doctor or anything, but i dont think that water or angels are pinned down or abused for being strange. also, i dont understand what pay me now is supposed to mean... is the singer a prostitute? and from what grammatical bizarro land did an ingenious quip like "our love is no other than me alone for me all day" come from?
now before you all start bombarding me with examples of even more inane lyrics than this (that is, if i had any sort of audience other than my mum and daniel wheaton, you might bombard me), allow me to make a distinction. there are some songs/poems that are of the "nonsense" variety. example... the walrus and the carpenter as told by tweedle dum and tweedle dee in lewis carroll's alice in wonderland; foxtrot uniform charlie kilo as sung by the bloodhound gang. etc. i have no criticism for works of this nature. they are silly and fun. but this tripe from live about love being like water seems to be attempting to be this ridiculous love ballad that could only pull the heartstrings of the most desperately love sick twelve year old who is still waiting to start her period..... and thats all i have to say about that.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Disturbing Thought

if no one reads my blog, why should i ever expect anyone to read my book?????

Monday, June 01, 2009

Read My Book!

well i have spent most of this afternoon sending of dozens and dozens of query emails to agents in the states regarding my book about sabrina. i have also been collecting rejection notices from a few of them, but amazingly, one guy asked me to send my manuscript along shortly after i wrote him. so that sounds kind of promising, but best not to get my hopes up. anyway, i have to get moseying on to work now, but lets hope i have the ball rolling, and try not to dwell on the nagging thought that perhaps my work just isnt publishable.


well, as i mentioned in my last two posts, i would update you about the kite situation and the situation at the walrus as information became available. amazingly, i have information on both at this very moment, so i can condense it into one post. imagine. anyway, so this weekend dave came to see me in hamilton because i had a very brief shift on saturday morning and i figured, why bother wasting a whole day of our ever so short weekends just because i have to work. so dave was unable to get a new diamond kite like the one whose crossbar broke, but he did get a box kite by the same people while the kite sale was still on. although it was a little disappointing that we couldnt fix our diamond kite with any of the parts from the box kite, it was exciting because neither of us had ever flown a box kite before. so yesterday was super windy and we meandered on down to bayfront park and got the box kite up and running. it was awesome! and i tied an extra cord onto it so we got it to go up twice as high. and then i got my batman kite up again (the one that only cost a dollar fifty, remember) and it was excellent. and then i let a little kid fly the batman kite and she got it stuck in a tree. so her dad climbed the tree and we got it out, and amazingly, the cheap little thing didnt get torn. it is the kite that just wont quit. anyway, so thats the kite update. im still trying to get in touch with the makers of our defective diamond kite to see if they can send us a replacement part.
as for updating you about the walrus, i checked again to see if the information about the guilty pleasures writing contest is on the website or not and it is now. so the links in the last post will work now. i suppose my guess that the magazine went to print before the website was up and running was correct... it makes sense i suppose but also seems a little silly that they would send out a publication with incorrect contact information simply because the magazine is dated at some point in the future... but what do i know. im just a blogger.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

I Am The Walrus

well i dont think ive ever mentioned it on here (although i could be mistaken, as i tend to mention the most irrelevant of facts here) but i have a subscriptioin to the walrus, which is a more or less excellent canadian magazine. the only really negative thing i have to say about it is the literature articles tend to embody the kind of exasperating pretentiousness that seems to surround every facet of the canadian art world, which i have no patience for. not to mention they are total margaret atwood disciples, BUT that being said, the journalistic pieces and the fiction and such that get published in the magazine are excellent, so all in all, its pretty decent. ANYWAY the walrus is apparently having a "guilty pleasures" writing contest, whose deadline for submission is july 31, and it says in the magazine to check for full contest rules. well, if you click on the link i so kindly provided, there is no website to be read, and if you just go to and search for the contest using keywords, you cant find it either. so i think the people at the walrus sent the magazine to print before they had the webpage up and running, and since you get the hardcopy about a month before the actual date printed on the magazine, it has made for a rather frustrating turn of events. anyway, way to go guys, way to go.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Let's Go Fly A Kite

well, while the rest of you normal people were out in tents getting drunk over the long weekend, dave and i were being extreme geeks. how you may ask? ill tell you. we decided on saturday that it was very windy. so windy, in fact, that you could fly a kite. so we wandered on over to zellers, and youll never believe what happened. KITES WERE FIFTY PERCENT OFF!!!!! MAY 15 TO 22 ONLY!!!!! it was like fate. bizarre, hobby related fate. anyway, so we bought a batman kite for the low low price of $1.48 and a big, giant, 1.9m tall rainbowy kite for $7.48. it was awesome. i was so stoked. but alas, we did not have a chance to fly our kites on saturday, because we went and saw the movie earth (which was awesome) and by the time the movie got out dave was really hungry, and after dinner it was too late to go kite flying. but have no fear comrades. we went out on sunday afternoon to sunnybrook park to fly the shit out of those kites. it was beautiful and sunny and we even checked the wind speed before we left. once we got to sunnybrook, we found this enormous flat playing field and started running around like madmen trying to get the big kite up in the air. dave got pretty close at one point, but then the kite got wrapped around a football goal post. but have no fear comrades, we saved the kite. anyway, after a long time and no success with either kite, we were tired and thirsty, so after a brief detour through the woods, we got back in the car. we stopped at harveys and i got a milkshake and a bottle of water (sidebar: i have to admit, even though the price went up, the new harveys milkshakes made with real ice cream are fantastic). rehydrated, dave took me to his old high school where there was more wind on the playing field. you see, the field at sunnybrook was kind of low and surrounded by thick, old growth forest, and it was virtually wind proof as a result. the field at the high school was perfect. so i got the kites reassembled, and we were off. dave had just let go of the big kite, it began to sail, and then POOF the whole thing folded in half. it was very sad, one of the supporting rods in the back cracked and broke into four pieces. we tried to tape it back together, but alas, it was a lost cause. anyway, we rallied and got the batman kite in the air in about one second, and flew it for almost an hour. it was lots of fun, and we decided since kites are still onsale, we are going to buy a replacement for our giant kite and then try again next week. dave took lots of pictures, so hopefully some of them turned out nice and i can post them on here once they are developed. anyway, that was my long weekend in a nutshell... i will keep you all updated on the kite situation as details become available.

Friday, May 15, 2009



Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Forgot to Title

well here we are on this bright and sunny tuesday afternoon. anne and i are at the library and its SWELTERING in here. in other news, they are doing this really serious renovation of the library and farmers market (both in the same building), and there have been little indications of this project for some time now and then all of a sudden, WHOOSH! the entire entrance has disappeared behind drywall and the whole interior has been temporarily reconfigured to allow for the construction. i was so disoriented when we got here, i felt like i had crash landed on a new planet. anyway, it looks like the renovation of both locations is going to be pretty sweet, and im excited to see how it looks when its done. in the meantime, im wondering how long we will have to deal with this somewhat cramped reconfiguration. you see, the whole first floor is closed off, i believe that is where the bulk of the building is being done, so we have all of the stuff from that floor spread out across the rest of the building as it remains. you also have to take an elevator up just tog et into the library its all very bizarre. i cant believe how fast it happened. if i had realised this was the case i would have brought anne here much sooner, but as it is we were at bayfront park enjoying the sun. anyway, i suppose on thursday, if its not raining, we can come down and explore our new habitat. the only other thing to add is while we were out for coffee anne was being a bit of a lunatic (nothing excessive, just a little boisterous) and you should have SEEN the glare this woman sitting there was giving us. i so wanted to confront her, but i never have the nerve to do that sort of thing. *sigh*

Tuesday, May 05, 2009


man, anne and i just ran into one of her old workers who ive never met, and she made such a big deal about how difficult anne is and was going on about how they better be paying me enough to work with her and she just had such a bad attitude i wanted to scream. and she was asking me about all of her bad behaviours, like does she still do this, does she still do that and im like, no, not really, seldom, etc, and then she was like oh maybe shes medicated, she wasnt medicated with me. and what i wanted to say was, no, im an excellent worker... but i bit my tongue and just said yes shes made alot of progress with me and im very proud of her. nice to meet you, goodbye. and i cant be sure but i think she was the worker that took her to the pool all the time and people have commented to me many many times that i treat anne much better and am much more patient with her than her old worker..... grr. im so frustrated. the only triumph i had here was that while this woman was giving me the third degree, anne sat in her chair, quiet as anything and behaved in the calm, respectful manner i have come to expect from her.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Thought of Something

well, as anticipated, i thought of something to write about. as i continue to do research on all of this literary agent business, i have learned that theres only like 30 agents in canada. figures. anyway, it looks like this whole process is going to be a hell of a lot of work, especially since i am oh so fortunate enough to live in canada where we only allow a small percentage of people to do anything artistic. i guess the next time i lose work because of rain im going to have to get myself down to the school library and get to work on this stuff where theres no time limit on the computers. *sigh* so painful.

Ten to Five

so yesterday the weather was bad and i didnt work. i spent most of the day at barbs and i played basketball with breanne, and once again i was reminded that i dont play basketball nearly as well as a fourteen year old with down's syndrome. although in my own defense, breanne has a lot more practice than i do, since she has the hoop in the backyard and everything. anyway, that was pretty much the extent of my day and today isnt really any more exciting. im sitting here at the library absolutely convinced that i had something i wanted to do online and now i cant for the life of me remember what it was, so obviously im blogging instead. sadly, this isnt really turning out any better.... so i guess ill go unless i think of somethign interesting to say. i guess if my life was more interesting that wouldnt be such a challenge.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


my good and noble comrades! i realised, after all of these years, that i had an extraneous comma in the title of my blog! how could this be? why did no one inform me! i am so embarassed by my poor grammar. i feel like i have no right to blog anymore. well, ok, maybe its not that bad, but im always the first to criticise signage with grammatical errors, and here i have been, committing one day in and day out without ever getting caught! oh, the humanity.
ps. i have started a new blog with my sister. a link is on the sidebar, please feel free to explore.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Vodka and Bubbles

i realised that "lemony fresh" is almost exactly the same as "melony fresh." which is odd because i like lemons more than melons, except for watermelon, which is great.

"I'm Glad We Didn't Perish

in the forest fire." thus spoke dave, as he pulled me into bed, arms around my shoulders, pinning me together like a straight jacket. the only thing protecting the world from my insanity. why would he say such a thing you ask? well, ill tell you. saturday morning was sunny and hot, just like the crack addicts at the weather network said it would be. we arose with high, high hopes of lazing about on the beach, but in typical dave fashion we didnt even get out the door until 3pm. anyway, after the long and exceptionally boring subway ride downtown, we walked over to the ferry docks and the temperature started to drop and the clouds started moving in. but we thought, its still warm enough to at least walk around the islands and maybe stroll on the beach, so we paid the fare for the ferry (whats the deal with that. it should be free, or at least part of the ttc), waited and finally got on. once we got to the island and arrived at the beach though, the temperature was dropping fast. over the water, moving toward the city was the biggest, blackest, most ominous storm cloud i could imagine, and the waves were getting bigger and more fierce every minute. we realised that despite the time and expense wasted on this journey, we were going to have to turn around and get back on the ferry. so we sighed, disappointed, and started heading back. but the story doesnt end there.... as we were walking back, the wind started picking up even more. it was so strong it was difficult to walk in, and then suddenly, from behind us we heard this great rumbling, it sounded like a machine and it was getting louder and louder and louder, and suddenly, the wind coming from behind us was really hot. and then, just when i thought i couldnt get any more frightening, i looked a head and the shore was disappearing in clouds of smoke. and i said, "its a fire! look at the smoke! where is it coming from, and why cant we see it?" and the really scary thing is we had to walk TOWARDS the smoke to get back to the ferry, and the machine like noise and hot air were behind us, baring down, and i thought we were going to die. it was terrible.
THEN once we finally got back to land safe and sound and the rain was coming down, we headed back to the ttc and of course my flip flops broke. so i had to ride the subway barefoot (gross). i made the mistake of saying " i dont think this could possibly get any worse, unless of course the power went out in the subway or something." and of course, it did. i mean the power didnt go out, but they were having technical difficulties the whole ride back to daves, and what is normally about a 35 minute ride took over an hour. and so, that was the beginning of summer.