Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Christmas Letter I'd Like to See

Hello All!!!

Another year has passed and what a year it was!

Our move from Richville went relatively well and this apartment, if not the height of chic, at least has a roof. Of course, moving would never have been an issue if Hubby Dearest hadn't embezzled those funds. Well, the embezzlement was not so much the problem, but covering his tracks sure as hell was. What do they teach them in business school?

So now, he lives in a 12x12 cell and wears an orange jumpsuit. And lovelies, orange is SO not his colour. Makes him look quite green around the gills actually. Truly, they really must revise the colour palette in that place. He seems to be adapting well at least, he has a new friend called Bubba. Big man, seems to treat hubby well - quite taken with him Bubba is. Almost as if... naw. Anyway, it's nice to know he's doing ok.

It's also nice to know that idiot "girlfriend" of his is out in the cold, the bitch. Of course, she'll fall on her feet, they always do that sort ; there'll be another rich idiot man to pick her up and dust her off for another round.

I'd divorce his sorry ass, but I believe in standing by my man, especially when there's a secret account somewhere out in the Caribbean. In a few years we'll be living the life we were meant to live once again. Temporary setback. Yes, that's all it is.

The children are well, as always, at least I think they are.

Adolescent Boy has finally made friends. I'm so happy for him. True, they tend to be a bit rowdy (but they're teenagers, what can you expect) and love doing target practice from car windows, but I consider it building a skill set he never would have built up otherwise. Shooting a moving target while moving yourself seems like it would be really really difficult. I'm proud of my boy for stepping up. I do wonder though, why he has all those small cellophane bags of flour in his room. Maybe he's thinking of starting cooking school! It would be nice to have a cook in the family. People obviously cook much less than they used to if flour is sold in such small bags now. I wonder what the inside of a supermarket looks like...

Teenage Daughter has started a part-time job. She works evenings. A wonderful little go getter Teenage Daughter is. Personally, I think she must be rather cold in those stilettos and minis, especially in the snow, but you know how teenagers are. There's no talking to them. And she seems so popular! A few times, I came home from shopping (times are tough, so I have to keep my spirits up you know!) in the afternoon and she had friends over. Boyfriends. Never the same one though, she goes through men like I don't know what. Such a popular girl. She takes after me in that. I was such a popular teenager, though my mother wouldn't let me have boyfriends in my room. But times change, don't they?

Other Son... well, um.. I'm not sure I have one. There's a bedroom, there's a closed door and there's strange noises coming, I suppose from his computer. He's "gaming" apparently, whatever that means.

The other day, I had a visit from some nice men in suit regarding Other Son, they said they were from some place called Pentagon or something - sounds like that must be a really nice store catering to teenagers, but I don't quite remember, I was leaving to go shopping.... Maybe that was important? If it was, they'll no doubt be back. They mentioned something about hacking. Hacking what? Does Other Son have a hacking cough? Seems I would have heard him, but with the door closed all the time, well, I don't want to intrude...

And so, friends and family, another year comes to an end. It was a trifle trying at times, but this too will pass.

Wishing you a wonderful Holiday Season,

The Smiths

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

And on that note, I bid you all adieu, most probably until the new year. May your holidays be merry and bright and empty of angst and expectations.


Happy Belated Festivus!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Um....

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I know I'm showing my ignorance here but who's Brittany Murphy?
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Thursday, December 17, 2009

Bah, Humbug! (Redux)

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I'm doing it too - with slight edits. Seems everyone is recycling Christmas posts. It's the perfect time for regifting after all - especially those posts that were written before the advent of readers in this blog:

Rudolph, the red-nosed reindeer
had a very shiny nose.
And if you ever saw him,
you would even say it glows.

All of the other reindeer
used to laugh and call him names.
They never let poor Rudolph
join in any reindeer games.

Then one foggy Christmas Eve
Santa came to say:
"Rudolph with your nose so bright,
won't you guide my sleigh tonight?"

Then all the reindeer loved him
as they shouted out with glee,
Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer,
you'll go down in history!


Now, I ask you, is this crap or what?

They hated him because of his difference, because of his red nose. Because he was a serious drinker, and a nasty drunk perhaps? Unless he had roseacea - they really should be more specific...

Point is Rudy was an outcast. And one night, because of  the fog, he's shown favour by the fat man in red and suddenly all the other reindeer love him? I think not.


Au contraire. It would annoy the hell out of the others that he of all reindeer has been picked as the leader. The outcast as boss? Um, don't think so. Or at any rate they wouldn't be shouting out for glee. Grumbling and bitching? Definitely


And a red nose does nothing in the fog. If it were yellow, it could help, but red? Not so much, so what's up with that?.


You might point out that I'm anthropomorphizing these animals, but hey, I didn't start it - have you ever seen a reindeer shout out with glee? I rest my case.


Thus I feel safe in assuming they act like humans all the time - which is rather fucked up in and of itself, but that's a whole different ballgame (or reindeer game as the case may be).
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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Guaranteed Feel Good Moment

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Early morning. You're getting ready for work.

You're sitting on the bed, staring into space - as you are wont to do  It's just so damn early isn't it.

You snap out of it, sigh, and bend down to put on your socks.

The button of your pants pops off. The only reason it doesn't fly across the room is that you're bent over

Guaranteed to make you feel good about yourself on a gloomy Tuesday morning.
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Wednesday, December 09, 2009

'Tis The Season

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Oh yes. Indeed it is. It's snowing on Montreal.

You all know my feelings about  the proverbial white stuff. I've never made a secret of it - not a big fan of winter. 

Unfortunately, unlike most of  her green batrachian kind the Jazzer can't just dig under the mud and hibernate for a few months. It's that whole damn earning a living thing... Not a big fan of earning a living either. It's highly overrated.

And so.

It's snowing on Montreal. Coming down like there's no tomorrow. Or today. Depending on the media and how given they are to blowing stuff out of proportion we're expecting anything from 10 to 35 cm of snow (you Americans can convert it yourselves, there are tons of handy metric converters on the internet, gotta love the internet for sparing us the bother of calculating it in our poor overworked heads). Is it just me or is there a HUGE margin for error here? It's like weather prediction in the 21st century is still a crystal ball thing.

Most likely, we'll end up with something like 5 cm.

Aside: OK, I did it. I'm anal that way. I couldn't just leave it. So we're expecting anywhere from 4 to 14 (give or takes) inches.

And so.

People will be acting as if they've never seen snow before today. As if this were a first. As if they and their ancestors and the ancestors before their ancestors all the way up to the first moron off  the boat who thought it would be a wonderful idea to settle here didn't get masses of snow every winter.  Hell people it's not like you don't KNOW what winter is all about. Get over it!

Except me.  Cause I don't bitch about the heat so I can bitch about winter. So there. Them's my rools.

And so.

Schools were closed already this morning before the snow even started. In case. I remember when schools would be closed only if the storm had already hit overnight. Yeah, I know. I know. I'm becoming my "back-when-we-were-kids" parents. You know, the you-young'uns-have-it-so-much-easier school of thought. In my defense, several people at work said the same thing when they got in. Either we're all getting old or everyone is a wuss today. Even in the latter case, we are all getting old regardless.

Sometimes I wonder, since it's getting so much easier for each subsequent generation, how mankind has actually managed to survive thus far. The mind boggles.

And so.

Traffic will be hell tonight; lots of people with no winter tires yet - because remember, we never get snow here in December, and everyone will be all traumatized that yeah, it's actually happened, we've gotten snow.

On a day like this, there's something to be said for public transport.

And so

Tonight and tomorrow it'll be news. Headliner on radio and TV. Front page in the papers. Because lordamighty we actually got snow in Montreal. SNOW!!!  Who'da thunk it? Goddamn! It might actually displace Tiger and his ever more numerous female companions who keep oozing out of the woodwork.

People are morons.
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Friday, December 04, 2009

Today's What the F**k Moment

Cause I guess I shouldn't say fuck in a title, right?

Moving on (I'm digressing before even getting started; can you actually do that?)


Today's WTF moment is brought to you by Tiger Woods (damn but nicknames like Tiger annoy me - course if my name was Eldrick, I might go by some stupid nickname too - again with the digression!)

Ok, so the guy, was cheating on his wife it seems - oh lord almighty! The! Horror!!!!

Um... so what? Tiger is the first person to cheat on his/her spouse, perhaps?

Headlines like this: Tiger Woods scandal - Woods in intense marriage counseling are just waaaaay too much information - and none of anyone's business.

Why is this news on all the "serious" media from the CBC to the Washington Post rather than on Entertainment Tonight? This isn't news, this is something between him and his wife.

What's the fascination? Fer chrissake, the guy's famous for playing a sport where the point is whacking a tiny ball for miles and wearing ugly pants (unless they're over the ugly pants thing?) to great monetary advantage.

Why is this news? and more to the point, why does anyone care how he lives his private life? The operative word here being PRIVATE.

I know some will argue that actually he's a public figure, thus so is his life. That's bullshit. I don't care how public you are, you're still entitled to a private life, no matter who you're with in your car.

Why do people rejoice so much in the "downfall" of public figures - remember Clinton and all those other politicians? And have you ever noticed that it's almost always about sex? Why do people get so damn het up about sex?

Just a thought in passing, and moving away from Woods for a bit, I can't help but think many politicians have much worse stuff going on than sex scandals, things involving corruption and bribes and such. Things that should concern us as citizens, but nope, it's the guy who dips his wick in the wrong vat of wax who makes the front page. Maybe if people weren't so busy sniffing out sex "scandals" they'd sniff out the important stuff.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

The Five Words - Finally

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Quite a while ago - could it have been this summer? - Geewits did a post consisting of her thoughts on five different words and offered to give five words to whoever wanted them.

I did - hey, easy post eh?

She gave me the words; being me, I promptly ignored them. I'm good at ignoring stuff, it's my talent.

But I've finally gotten to it, so here we go...

Napping

There's nothing better than a good nap. On a Saturday afternoon. On the couch. After a nice cup of tea. In front of the fire. Oh yeah.

Or in bed in the summertime with cool sheets and nekkid butt. Or on a hammock.. or or or....

And it's ever so easy to just slip away that way - get comfy and you're off.

So why don't I just do more of it? I often feel like having a nap (at work, surprise surprise) but even on weekends, I rarely give in. Some sort of guilt thing I suppose. I am very good at sitting around doing nothing (another talent! just ask Mr. Jazz), but somehow, napping  just seems too self indulgent. I'm not getting anything done (yes, this is a paradox for someone who can stare into space for 30 minutes at at time), but it seems I should at least be trying to vacuum or read or watch trash TV.


Image from the Firstpeople website

Boats

I'd love to sail. I would. I adore water - especially the ocean. But for some reason I rarely clamber into (onto?) anything bigger than a canoe (where I tend to go around in circles) or a pedal boat - and we all know how that turned out. Which might explain why I'm never invited on anyone's boat. That or the fact that I don't know anyone with a boat bigger than a pedal boat... Unless of course they're all hiding their yachts from me. Yacht. What a perfectly bizarre word that is. And why don't they spell it Yat?

Italy

I've never been. But it's on the list - as are so many other places. The world is so huge, life is so short. I'm sure I'll die before I see it all - or even most of it. I'm thankful to have travelled as much as I have, to have seen Ecuador and Nepal and Vietnam among other places. But I haven't even set foot in Africa, I've never seen Italy or Spain or Portugal. That's sort of sad.

Fact is, nowadays I tend to prefer traveling to see friends I rarely get to see. Maybe it's age creeping up on me (though most days I feel as if rather than creeping, it's roaring towards me like an 18 wheeler on the highway) but keeping in contact takes precedence over seeing new places. At this point anyway. I'm sure I'll see Italy eventually - and it won't be on a 15 cities, 10 days tour - but before then I'll no doubt see friends in Belgium, France, Australia and the US several times.

This had nothing to do with Italy right? Damn.

Dancing

Remember Elaine on Seinfeld?  'Nuff said.

Ok, I'm nowhere near that bad, I do dance to the beat rather than to the beat of my own drummer, but I've never felt comfortable dancing. Perhaps because I'm an introvert, dancing makes me feel uncomfortable. Wrong. Outside myself.  Just somehow off. It just makes me uncomfortable dammit!

I've felt like taking dance classes pretty often over the years though. Perhaps because having the steps means you know what to do, how and when to do it. And not only do you not make a total fool of yourself, you impress the hell out of everyone else. Impressing the hell out of everyone would be good.



Eggs

I love them. I love the shape of them, I love the colours of them, I love their fragility and their strength. I love their variety.

I also love to eat them. Unfortunately, they don't return that particular lovin'.

For some reason, over the past few years I've developed difficulty digesting eggs. Not eggs used in cooking things like crepes or cake. Eggs as eggs. In some forms more than others. Omelets do not agree with me. At all. Nor do scrambled eggs. Fried eggs go over much easier (rereading this I just realized there's a pun there! I'm clever I am, or would be if I realized I was making a pun...), as do hard boiled. Egg salad sandwiches. Mmmmm.  Poached seems to work-ish. But none of them leave my stomach feeling deliriously happy and content for more than half an hour. I react worse to some forms of cooked eggs. Is it the IBS? Maybe. Is this too much information? No doubt.

But as my love cannot be denied, I sometimes eat them anyway. That half hour of delirious happiness is worth the subsequent feelings of "why do you hate me so!!". Sometimes.


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Monday, November 30, 2009

As I have really nothing for you...

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You have to check this out.

Warty Mammal has this great post up. In it you'll find a link about bad (bad bad bad) toys to give a kid.

It's a riot, endlessly amusing. Go!

Go NOW!!


And while you're at it it check out the rest of her blog. She's never fails to amuse.
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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Soapbox Time

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I've been pretty much incommunicado in the last week or so because of work. I'm swamped, I'm drowning and the last thing I want to do is type some more at the end of the day. Today however, Mr. Jazz sent me the link to an article that made my blood boil.

Steve  Proulx of the free weekly newspaper Voir posted this article on the paper's website on Monday. Here is my translation/summary, as most of you don't read French I think...

Everyone Is Reading It

I'd like to pick up on this post from the Librairie Monet blog called The Economy of Consensus (Sorry folks, it's also in French - Jazz)


The author (a bookseller) and I share the same malaise: the general curiosity about books can be measured in millimetres.


The blogger writes: :
"This summer, on vacation at the beach, I looked at what people were reading. It was predictable: Millennium, Fascination (the French title of one of the Twilight books - J) and Harry Potter. I feel like I have a plastic bag over my head. Are we condemned to all read the same thing? What happens to diversity?"
At the Salon (du Livre - the yearly book fair where all the publishing houses gather to tout their wares - J), I saw the same phenomenon.


The public has thousands of titles to choose from on just about any subject. Volumes from yesterday or today, inexpensive and expensive. Everything is there, the choice is theirs.


Everyone reads pretty much the same things (he then goes on to quote a couple of Quebec novels and authors) And of course those damned sexy vampires. Twilight = Sick. To. Death. Of. It. (For the record, me too! - J)


This infatuation for a particular book is hiding something, I'm not sure quite what. Perhaps a certain insecurity about books in general? Rather than risk being surprised (or disappointment), because we aren't all bulimic readers, we'd rather go with the popular vote.

Everyone is reading it, so it must be good.

Because of this, though, I'm sure a lot of readers miss the opportunity to read a book they'll really like.

A book written for them.


Well, that was an interesting little exercise. I haven't translated in forever.

***********

What really annoys the living hell out of me here is the whole elitist "if you're reading bestsellers you're reading crap" bullshit.

I'm one of those bulimic readers. I'll give pretty much anything a try - from bestsellers to obscure Eastern European writers. I LOVE reading and can't imagine leaving the house without a book in my bag. I freaking get nervous if I do that - even to go to the corner store.

But.

I don't expect everyone to be the same. The point is, these people are READING! Which is better than a huge whack of the overall population. So what if they're reading bestsellers because they're bestsellers. True, there is some bestseller dreck out there, but there's also some good stuff. Does it really matter that they're reading a particular novel because everyone else is?

Besides, for those of us who like obscure Eastern European authors, those bestsellers bring in enough money for editors to actually publish them. They're not going to generate millions, but the millions generated by the latest Dan Brown or Grisham mean that all 300 of us can read Mr. Obscure. I don't like Grisham or Brown much, but more power to them if they get people to read - and enable me to read what I like. Hell, I love Stephen King, the emperor of bestsellers ('cause saying King, the king of... is just too repetitive), so who the hell am I to judge.

All things considered, all of society works the same way, doesn't it? People wear the same clothes, eat at the same restaurants, take the same vacations, buy the same Uggs (now there are some ugly ass boots, but hell, if you like them why should it annoy me?)

Standardization is part of our society and has always been. For all the Brontës (and XUP, I LOVED Wuthering Heights), how many obscure (now lost) brilliant writers were there in the 19th century? I'd venture to think quite as many as today, all proportions being kept.

I can't help but smile at the whole "Read! Read! Read! (but don't read bestsellers 'cause they're not Literature)" issue.

Cultural snobbery drives me insane.
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Monday, November 16, 2009

The "Written" Post

Ticknart did it here. And I thought it was really quite cool, so I'm doing it now.  I hope the rest of you will join in. Oh, and in case you have problems reading it, the "translation" is below the images...

It might seem somewhat incoherent, but keep in mind that it was written at the ungodly hour of 6:30 on a Saturday morning - that in itself is a total obscenity. I have no business being conscious at 6:30 on a Saturday - and re-reading this, I realize that I wasn't completely conscious anyway. Which is good, I suppose, it precluded me from writing "neatly"...




So this is it - my handwriting. I told Ticknart I was going to do this and I did get around to it [Kudos to me!!]  - now I have to get around to Geetwits' 5 words - and I'll do that too, I swear. Actually I think this is a wonderful idea. I love writing. I have no problem with what my writing looks like - contrary to a lot of people who seem to think theirs is really ugly - I can't help but wonder what they expect... Actually I love that there are no longer any penmanship classes, when everyone's handwriting looked the same. I love seeing the uniqueness of other people's writing. Even when it's illegible - I work with engineers.

I love the feeling of a pen scratching across paper. And the sound of it too - when it's quiet enoug - like on a Saturday morning at 6:30 ferchrissake when I can't for the life of me get back to sleep!!!!

Maybe that's one of the reasons I've been keeping a journal for 36 years now. The act of writing - as opposed to typing, which I do entirely to much of, is very calming...

I used to write 3-4 letters a week - now I blog. It might reach more people, but it doesn't quite have the same feeling to it, does it. I think I'd be hard pressed to find anyone to write back tome these days - life gets in the way I guess. I'm not sure I could sustain the rhythm myself.

So there you go. Please "write" a post, I'd love to see your handwriting - I promise I can in no way see into your soul through it - I have no notion of graphology (is that the word?) whatsoever.

I just think it'd be really really cool.

C'mon, jump in!!

Jazz

Friday, November 13, 2009

Thought of the day

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Some people are like slinkies. Not much use for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when you push them down the stairs.

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I Vant to Suck Your Blood

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Have we ever talked about vampires you and I? I think not.




 The original - Vlad Tepes

I have to tell you, I am sick to death of the creatures. Really I am.

I remember reading Dracula the first time - it's one of those books I've read often. I was 12 or 13 I think, and Stoker captured my imagination and ignited in me a passion for vampires. I searched out all the information I could get on them and on Vlad Tepes, the original Dracula on whom the story was based (and this was way before the ease of the internet, when searching for information involved libraries an encyclopedias. Oh my!). We all know about him and his nasty habit of impaling people who annoyed him and watching them die while having dinner (and if you don't you can read up on him here or any number of places on the net - cause libraries and encyclopedias are so old fashioned).

Stoker's Dracula was a blood sucking inhuman monster. As vampires should be. Because once they become vampires, they lose all humanity, they have no soul, they're cold evil monsters. Gotta love a good monster.

And along came Anne Rice. Oh, Anne, Anne, Anne. You ruined vampires forever.

Actually, I quite liked Interview With The Vampire, it was new and different - told from the vampire's perspective. Lestat was a kick ass vampire - although Tom Cruise as Lestat was probably the worst possible casting when they did the movie... Seriously, Tom Cruise???  A vampire? That's beyond ridiculous... but I digress.

The subsequent books kept on with the whole "vampire as poor tortured soul" thing and that's just so far off base as to be ridiculous, cause a vampire? No soul, no feelings - end of story. OK, granted it really plays into the teenage girl and romantic hero thing, but nope. It just doesn't work.

And now 20-odd years after Anne Rice you have the Twilight thing and that TV show whatever it's called and tortured vampires in love with humans and it just drives me batty. Because vampires are supposed to be monsters. M-O-N-S-T-E-R-S. You know, like those things that hid under the bed and in the closet when you were a kid. In adult version.

Why must everything today be benign? Why can't we deal with horror and things that go bump in the night? We can't be safe, we'll never be safe, 'cause if a vampire doesn't get you, life eventually will. Why have vampires gone from fascinating supernatural beings to lovable tortured romantic beings.

Seriously, look at this:



"When you can live forever, what do you live for"

It's just wrong. Teenage girls notwithstanding.  
Excuse me while I hurl...
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Monday, November 09, 2009

20 Years Ago Today

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The Wall fell. With no bombs or violence, though the crash was heard around the world.

Günter Schabowski
of the East German ministry of Information announced at the end of a press conference devoted to something else altogether that people would now be allowed to cross without hassle into West Germany.

"When? ", asked the journalists

"Immediately " ("sofort, unverzüglich"), he replied

No one really believed it, apparently, until a few hardy souls went to a border crossing and tried.

And the wall fell - if only metaphorically. It fell physically the next day.


It was a heady time. Everything seemed possible. There was hope. Everything was going change. 

It didn't obviously; the wall may have fallen but human nature being what it is, pretty much everything else stayed the same or worsened.

My moments of naivete and idealism are few and far between. I should have known better.

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Saturday, November 07, 2009

Friday Funny (On Saturday)

A wealthy old gentleman decided to go on a hunting safari in Africa , taking his faithful, elderly dog Killer along for the company.

One day the old dog starts chasing rabbits and before long, discovers that he's lost. Wandering about, he notices a leopard heading rapidly in his direction with the intention of having him for lunch.

The old dog thinks, "Oh, oh! I'm in deep shit now!" Noticing some bones on the ground close by, he immediately settles down to chew on the bones with his back to the approaching cat. Just as the leopard is about to leap, the old dog exclaims loudly, "Boy, that was one delicious leopard! I wonder, if there are any more around here?"

Hearing this, the young leopard halts his attack in mid-strike. A look of terror comes over him and he slinks away into the trees. "Whew!", says the leopard, "That was close! That old dog nearly had me!"

Meanwhile, a monkey who had been watching the whole scene from a nearby tree, figured he could put this knowledge to good use and trade it for protection from the leopard. So, off he goes. The old dog, however, sawhim heading after the leopard with great speed, and figured that something must be up.

The monkey soon caught up with the leopard, spilled the beans and struck a deal for himself with the leopard.

The young leopard, furious at being made a fool of said, "Here, monkey, hop on my back and see what's going to happen to that conniving canine!
"

Now, the old dog noticed the leopard coming with the monkey on his back and thouht, "What am I going to do now?", but instead of running, the dog sat down with his back to his attackers, pretending he hadn't seen them yet; when they were within earshot, the old dog said...


"Where's that damn monkey? I sent him off an hour ago to bring me another leopard!
"


Moral of this story...

 

Don't mess with the old dogs... age and skill will always overcome youth and treachery! "B.S." and brilliance only come with age and experience.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Sometimes It's Hard



A couple of posts back I was whining (as I am wont to do) about the cold after coming back to Montreal from the warm sunny California desert. I'm very much the broken record (for those of  you who remember that particular prehistoric product) in that regard. Always and forever.

In the comments, XUP asked why, if the cold was that bad for me, I didn't go live in the heat?"

And I had to stop and wonder. Why not indeed? As she pointed out, jobs can be found.

Unfortunately it's not that simple. Jobs can indeed be found, but getting a green card to work legally in the US is not so easy. Being someone's illegal alien maid or waitress? Not so much.

And, despite my whining about the weather, I do love Montreal. Unlike lots of cities, and most US cities I've been to, there's always something going on. There's animation, there's life, it's a great place to live. Now if only we could transport the whole city to the middle of the desert...

And then there's that other thing. That thing that means there is no way you can leave. That one thing that makes it impossible... Aging parents. That particular issue was brought home to us with a bang this week when Mr. Jazz's elderly aunt who lives downstairs began having serious issues. My own mother, who lives in another city has health issues (thankfully, my sister lives near her) and Mr. Jazz's own mom is getting on in years.

Moving to the desert sun is simply not an option. Because what do you do? Leave them on their own? No. We couldn't.

I find it very bizarre to be in this position. How can it be that all of a sudden we're caretakers for the people who have always been our rocks? These people who have always been there for us, who have always been so strong? We find ourselves watching those rocks crumble and it's very disconcerting, to say the least.

Finding help, finding a place for her where she'll be safe, knowing all the while she'll be angry that we're doing this, that she'll most likely consider we're ganging up on her, it's heartbreaking. And knowing we have no choice because she has become a danger to herself... it's heartbreaking. It's all heartbreak.

And I can't help but wonder what we'll do when our turn comes. Will we have the gumption - as my mom did - to move to a place of our choice before things become serious? I hope so. Especially as we have no kids to take care of us (not that that's any guarantee, or that I'd ask that of my kids anyway).

My mortality has been brutally shoved into my face. And I don't like it one bit.
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Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Awards keep falling on my head...

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Awards abound, they just don't stop coming, oh my!

Before I left  on vacation, Gaelyn at Geogypsy  awarded me the Best Blog Award. Isn't that sweet of her... I don't particularly feel like the best these days as I'm hardly blogging - life has been overwhelming me a bit lately, but nevertheless, here are the rules.

The Best Blog Award rules are:

1) To accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award and his/her blog link.

2) Pass the award to 15 other blogs that you have recently discovered and think are great!

Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.



Honestly though, I just don't have the gumption to link to 15 bloggers. Besides, if it's the best blog, how can every person who gets it have 15 best blogs on their lists. Doesn't best imply just one blog? And mathematically, doesn't it mean that eventually everyone who has a blog will end up receiving the award? Blogland is a very democratic place apparently...

So, ya know what? All those who read this, take it, please... I'd single out Suldog but I recently gave him one and he'd probably come to Montreal and string me up by the toes himself if I did it again...

**********************

And then I returned from vacation, and Ian had an award waiting for me, and such nice things to say. I'm blushing...



I's got me one lovely blog it would seem. And another award.

The rules for this one are to pass it on to three others. Admittedly, it's a much more manageable number, and no doubt will take itself around blogdom at a much more leisurely pace.  But again, I feel lazy so take it, all of you. I give myself enough credit that I think if y'all didn't have lovely or bestest blogs I wouldn't be reading you*.

So here's to all of you! Your mission now is to keep me entertained...

To quote Suldog: Soon, with more better stuff.

* See Sully? You escaped two of them!!! When I go to Boston you'll be obliged to point me in the direction of the closest Trader Joe's.
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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Dear Mayor Tremblay...


Today on my way to work I heard the most stupid thing to hit my ears in a long long time. Amazingly stupid actually. At first I thought I hadn't woken up yet and was still in my comfy bed dreaming deranged dreams. Alas I wasn't.

Now, I know municipal elections in the province will be held Sunday. And I'm sure with all the corruption scandals hitting your administration in the last couple of weeks you must be scrambling. Because of course they held it all under their belts until the campaign was well under way to exert maximum pain. Sneaky bastards aren't they? And yeah, of course they're no better, they're just doing better at covering their tracks. For now.

But !

But to put out a radio commercial* saying:  "Let's talk about integrity. Did the mayor know or didn't he? Let's put it this way, if you're working in a company and your colleague does something dishonest, do you think he'll go tell the boss about it? Or you? No, he won't, of course he won't! I had no idea but I have integrity and as soon as I found out about all this I took measures." (Note - contents of commercial updated after hearing it yet AGAIN!!)

Mr. Tremblay, let me impart a bit of Jazz wisdom here:

A) Whining won't help. Seriously, stop whining, it's cringe inducing in a grown man.

B) You are the boss. You won the last election. It's your business to know.As top dog, sorry dude, but ultimately you are responsible. It's as simple as that. You and nobody else. You wanted the power, you also have to take the lumps that go along with it.

C) The whole "don't blame me it's not my fault" thing is pathetic at best. Put on your big boy jockey shorts and take responsibility for your administration. You're not in grade school anymore. And acting like you are won't get you re-elected.

Of course it might. We are in Montreal after all and clowns abound, so we'll see on Sunday won't we?

Cynically as ever,

Jazz

* Not even an interview. That you just hear once. A damn commercial that will be played over and over and over again... Oy man! Fire your campaign manager!!!

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Monday, October 26, 2009

Damn, it's cold in Quebec...

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I'm back.

Much to my dismay.

The picture post will have to wait - of course if you want pictures of Joshua Tree you can go here - the pictures aren't any different really from the last time we went. As for the other pics - honestly I just can't be bothered to spend the time getting a post together. Had you not been so prolific, forcing me to spend hours catching up on your stories, I might've made the effort.

Meh... probably not.

It's no fun starting the day at 39 degrees (Celsius) and arriving in Montreal still in the 30s - Farenheit this time. It freaking SNOWED the day we arrived!! That is just so wrong on so damn many levels I can't even begin to explain it if you don't understand. SNOW fer chrissake.... Someone shoot me now.

Things I've learned?

- I am made to live in the sunshine and heat. I was. I was born in the wrong country. If reincarnation does exist, I obviously was beyond evil in a previous life.

- It is patently unfair that Canadians like me are totally screwed in this regard. The warmest we can do is Vancouver where it rains 300 days a year. Yes it does Ian. It DOES!!!!! Americans have no idea how lucky they are to live in a country where they can actually go live in the warmth if they want.

- Hiking in the desert is beyond brilliant (Palm Canyon is an especial favourite)

- Hiking in the desert when it's 105 degrees and the sun is beating down on you mercilessly is highly overrated actually. Forget about hiking when it's 105 and there's no shade. At. All. Have a margarita instead. Or a chilled glass of Sauvignon Blanc by the pool.

- Sometimes a perfectly good hotel room seems like crap after nine days in a really cool, comfortable and extremely clean motel.

- Trader Joe's needs to open in Canada. In Montreal especially. Mr. Jazz and I could keep them afloat all on our own.

- You gotta love two days at the ocean after over a week in the desert. The contrast is loveley.

- It's 30 degrees (86F) in Palm Springs right now. It's hovering around freezing in Montreal. I rest my case.

- The 21st century has its good points - I've actually joined to the extent of getting an iPod (two actually, we got a nano and a classic, which holds all our music with space to spare - that sorta still boggles my mind - and the nano? it makes videos, has a stopwatch and a pedometer included... how useless and amusing is that. And for SO much cheaper than in Canada.

- PT Cruisers are - in my humble opinion - dumb excuses for cars. They're, like, girl cars. I hate PT Cruisers - but at least the one the rental place fobbed off on us wasn't white.

- What is the Californian (American?) obsession with trucks? Maybe not so much in LA, but as soon as you start going east, everyone has huge pickup trucks (I'm willing to give them sorta the benefit of the doubt as they might be work trucks - but probably not) or humongous SUVs - Escalades, Navigators, Hummers, Sequoias etc. Trucks made to go off road that will never ever see a dirt road, much less an off road track. I don't get it. Can someone explain this to me please?

- The Salton Sea is weird. Sorta creepy actually. More on that eventually.

- Redondo Beach, on the other hand is cool - cooler still is Hermosa beach, a half hour walk away.

- Like Geewits, I'm solar powered. And the fact that I'm back here does not make me happy. At all. Really. Not. At. All.


Now, I think I'll leave you, crawl into bed and moan listlessly for a time.

Goodnight.
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Sunday, October 11, 2009

Aaaaaaand they're off!!

To paraphrase Led Zeppelin... Going to California.... on a big jet plane. Ok, I admit there's a lot of heartache lyrics missing here, but what the hell, it doesn't apply it's gone.  Call it artistic license. Or failure to actually search around for something that does fit...

'Cause I'm done California Dreamin' too. I'm on my way!!

Now, here's hoping our friends at Blogger won't hate me too much and post this as scheduled. Gotta love Blogger scheduling - if and when it works...

God how I love being on holidays with Mr. Jazz. And this is a first, a holiday with computer. Depending on how it goes (one computer, two people, how much time is spent  on it - somehow I think it won't be much) it might also be the last. But that is of no import here.

Cause people I.

AM.

AWAY!!

Away to California, land of sun and ocean, beaches and desert - and I will sample them all...

First stop: Palm Springs. Mecca of the geriatric and the gays. Bizarre mix, but there you go. The gays, lets face it, are much more fun - their evenings don't end at 6:00pm. But since I'm rapidly approaching geridom, coming here to practice seemed like an interesting plan. Nowadays, you see, I'm all about comfort and good wine and less so about the dormitory, outside toilet and backpack. I guess that's what old is all about...




On the program this time, back to Joshua Tree for hiking - cause there are so many places there we didn't manage to get to last time. We've been away 10 months and it's been way too long.

And hiking in Indian Canyon....

And hiking at San Jacinto...

And hiking at... We're on the way to gerridom, people. I didn't say we had arrived!

And wandering around at Salton Sea checking out the birds, among other things.
 
And to end up, a couple of days at Redondo Beach. 'Cause I need me my ocean fix before I take myself home. I need to breathe that smell, I need to hear the waves, I need to see the endless water before spending another several months cooped up in an office and wading through oceans of slush - much less interesting as oceans go, dontcha think?

And so from all of you to me and Mr. Jazz....


Have a great vacation!!!!

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Correspondence - Gotta Love Public Transport

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Dear STM,

Wow, you got the really cool new 21st century system going dontcha? Those Opus chip cards. Just stick 'em in the machine and load 'em up with tickets or a monthly pass. It's all very ecological and shit. No more paper passes or tickets, reusable card. Kudos to you.

There's just one thing. A tiny thing but a fucking big annoyance nevertheless. Now, see, let me explain. I can load up to four different types of "fares" on my Opus card. As you mention in your website:

You can recharge your card with various transit fares, according to your needs. For example, you could load it with an STM monthly pass along with single fares to take RTL or STL buses.
That's great I think, it really is. Me? I really don't like loading my card often so I recharge with four packs of ten tickets - which will last me a couple of months.

But.

Yeah. you saw that coming didn't you?

But, I can't pay for the four packs with one swipe of my credit card. No. I have pay as I load each pack. Four times $20 in about two minutes. What happens? Each time my damn credit card has a fraud alert put on it, and I have to call the credit card company to confirm my purchases.

Because you. Are. A. Bunch. Of. MORONS!! who never thought your damn system through.

Ticketed off-edly

Jazz




******************************

Dear credit card company.

How many times has this happened now? Three? Four? I understand the computer analyzes my spending habits, but by the third or fourth time, you'd think the computer would have caught on to the fact that every couple of months I make four $20 payments in about two and a half minutes.

What the hell do I need to do in order to establish this as a spending habit?  Can't you put a note in my file to not bother calliing when that happens and just unlock the damn card???

Yes, yes, my safety first. You're on the ball, that's for damn sure.

But I can't help but wonder if you'll "fraud out" my credit card when I go on vacation this weekend?

Chargedly,

Jazz

******************************

Dear moron on the subway,

I was giving my seat to the hugely pregnant woman who got onto the subway at the same stop as you did. Not to you. You're only thirty and despite the business suit and that laptop you have to carry, I'm sure you can stand for a few stops. Get the hell over yourself.

To your credit though, when I loudly said, "that seat wasn't for you, it's for the hugely pregnant woman standing next to you" you sheepishly got up.

Kudos to you. The Jazzer, she is impressed


Eye-rolledly,

Jazz
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Tuesday, October 06, 2009

An Award! You really really like me!

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Bonnie, of Original Art Studio has just graciously bestowed on me the Over the Top Award. I don't quite get how whole girl in the apron is over the top, but Bonnie didn't conceive it, she just passed it on so I won't demand an explanation. The only thing I can think of is that the person who came up with this must have a boring life indeed if wearing an apron (with clothes underneath no less!) is to be considered over the top... Of course, me in an apron would definitely be over the top - y'all know about me and kitchens - not so much, right? But that's a whole other non-award thing.


Honestly, I'm not quite sure whether this is an honour or whether Bonnie has decided she hates me because this one involves a LOT of work. But seeing as I'm Blogless inMontreal - as opposed to Sleepless wherever, here we go...

The rules are:

Copy and change the answers to suit you and pass it on. It's quite tricky to use only one word answers! Once you have filled it out be sure to pass it on to 6 of your favorite bloggers. Alert them that they have been awarded! Have fun!

1. Where is your cell phone? Nowhere
2. Your hair? Grey
3. Your mother? Wise
4. Your father? Dead
5. Your favorite food? Edible
6. Your dream last night? Rock bands and motels (granted, it's more than one word, but there's no way to distill it to one word. And as for the dream... don't ask.)
7. Your favorite drink? Blood
8. Your dream/goal? Breathing
9. What room are you in? Office
10. Your hobby? Living
11. Your fear? Winter
12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? 54
13. Where were you last night? Um....
14. Something that you aren't? Male
15. Muffins? Sure
16. Wish list item? Python
17. Where did you grow up? Around
18. Last thing you did? This
19. What are you wearing? Clothes
20. Your TV? Off
21. Your pets? Dead
22. Friends? Some
23. Your life? There
24. Your mood? Altered
25. Missing someone? No
26. Vehicle? Yes
27. Something you're not wearing? Leather
28. Your favorite store? Book
29. Your favorite color? Red
30. When was the last time you laughed? Today
31. Last time you cried? Saturday
32. Your best friend? Imaginary
33. One place that I go to over and over? Loo
34. One person who emails me regularly? Viagra
35. Favorite place to eat? Plate

That was ridiculously long - even for one word answers...

My six:

Choochoo - cause she's more than slightly insane, bored out of her tree and this might undull her for five minutes.

Lime - cause she's great at memes. Seriously, have you ever seen what Lime does to a meme? It's almost scary.

Suldog - cause he's, well, over the top. Plus he does wonderful things with awards - namely rip the person who sent it to him to shreds. I'm a masochist I am.

Geewits - her brain is a marvelous place. Plus she'll keep it for herself and not pass on the agony.

Fragrant Liar - well, you read her birthday post. What? You didn't ?? Get yourself over to her blog right away!

Jocelyn - Read her stories. You'll understand.

Rachel - 'Cause she seems to be into lists this week, and this could be construed as a list if you have enough imagination.

Yeah, I know, that's seven. I took the time to answer 35 dumb questions, so I have earned the right to do as I please... Rules Schmules.
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Saturday, October 03, 2009

Must See Post

Fragrant Liar has a wonderful post up on... um... ageing.

Anyone over the age of 45, or getting there or thinking that despite all evidence to the contrary they'll never get older (get the hell out of Neverland people!) must read this. Check it out here.

A couple of excerpts to hook you...


Thirty years ago, I looked at my current age as far off in the future, in a land far, far away where gravity was of infinitesimal consequence. Time was something alien and against my primal mantra of I am young, I am invincible, I am the skinny girl with perky breasts.

(...)


These days as I prepare to speak, my measureless experiences crowd into my frontal lobe, jockeying for position to blast off my tongue first. Pick me, pick me, they clamor. And I reply tacitly, First come, first served. One thought breaks through the throng and lines up on the launching pad that is my tongue. It's coming . . . it's coming . . . Wait for it. It's . . . it's . . . gone. I am flustered and humbled by the ever-insidious brain fart.


I swear, the woman has been messing around in my brain. But enough about me, go there, go there now! And while you're at it, become a regular.

Because she's a great writer with a wicked sense of humour - I only wish I could write like her.

And because I said so.


PS: No, I'm not blogging at 8:00 am on a Saturday. I have a life. Which at this moment is being slept away, or maybe sexed away. Neither of which is wasted time. Gotta love blogger scheduling!

Thursday, October 01, 2009

In the news...

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Winner of the stupid headline prize for today:


"Typhoon's devastation spares no one - not even children"

Um... Children should miraculously start floating in the air when disaster strikes? Who the hell wrote that line?


Winner of the D'oh!!!* prize of the day:

Stephen Harper, our "beloved" PM, for saying that Canada has no history of colonialism**.

First nation leaders are understandably rather pissed off at the comment.


And in the What-The-Fuck-Is-Wrong-With-These-People file...

One of our offices has no internet today. Bell Canada cut off their service because they weren't paying their bills, which stopped coming a couple of months ago.

Our question: Why did they stop coming?

Bell's answer: Because we weren't notified about your move..

For the record, the office moved 2 years ago, and they managed to send the bills for both phone and internet service for all that time. To the new address...

???

* aka the open-mouth-insert-foot prize
** no doubt he will argue that he meant that Canadians per se didn't colonize Canada. It's the brits' and frogs' fault. Won't fly you moron.

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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

THANKSGIVING COMES FIRST !!!!

In this case the American Thanksgiving. You know the one at the end of November ('cause it would seem they harvest so much later than we do here in the GWN*). The one where people stuff themselves to bursting and get up ungodly hours to line up in front of the Walmart doors to be the first to stock up on all that Black Friday schlock. After all, exercise is good after such a hearty meal.

And what's up with a holiday on a Thursday. Holidays (other than Christmas and New Years) should always fall on a Monday or Friday. Thursday is sorta whacked. Just sayin'.

But I digress.

So, Suldog just posted about seeing Christmas displays in the stores. In his words:

If you believe, as I do, that Thanksgiving should play out before Christmas; that Christmas carols should not be heard on the radio before at least Thanksgiving evening; that advertisers who dare to encroach upon Thanksgiving - or, God help us, Halloween - with their hideous advertisements should be told in no uncertain terms that you will not shop at their establishments; that malls who put Santa Claus on display before Veterans Day should be made ashamed of themselves; then please consider doing what I'm going to ask of you.

Should you be as incensed as I am concerning Christmas schlock, please post a "
Thanksgiving Comes First" entry on your blog. Write from the heart. Everybody who visits your blog will know how you feel. Perhaps they'll also write about it, and so will their friends, and so on. I hope that, if enough of us do this, we might make some small impact.


Personally, I think Sully is a dreamer. But hey I saw my first Christmas display in AUGUST ferchrissake. That is beyond ridiculous! Atheist that I am, I really don't give a damn about the christian "little jesus born" aspect of Christmas. I like Christmas for the week of vacation I get. And the presents. Yeah, I'm shallow that way. In all honesty we could skip the whole damn thing (except for the weeks vacation, 'cause really, if I want a present I can buy it for myself) and I would be a happy camper. Christmas has become more of an obligation/annoyance than anything else.

But damn, I saw my first Christmas display in AUGUST! Granted, it wasn't a hot summer and someone might have mistaken it for fall - I'm ready to give them the benefit of the doubt, though I don't see why I should - but doesn't anyone flip the calendar anymore?

So: AMERICAN Thanksgiving comes first!!! Ours being on October 12, it wouldn't make much sense, and this post would have to be titled A Month After Halloween Comes First and it wouldn't make much of an impact at all, would it?

You have to wonder how retailers think. Do they honestly believe that people want Christmas junk this far before? I don't know anyone who will be buying twinkly little LED lights in August and early September when you can still be getting their greedy little hands on summer stuff for a quarter of the price. And let's face it, with the winters we get, the last thing I want to think about in September is Christmas and all it implies about winter and snow and slush and.... excuse me while I go hit my head against the wall now.

I have no problem with Christmas and it's place in the economy. Retailers love it. It saves some of them. But I fail to see how Christmas displays in September will entice people to buy more crap. But then I often underestimate the stupidity of the average consumer.

And so, I'm having my idealistic moment of the year (my one and only, and I reserved it for Suldog - he'd better be grateful). Perhaps if enough people do bitch about it they'll begin doing Christmas in November again. A woman can dream...

And Sully would see that it is good. And Sully would take a day of rest. And see that it was good. And pretty much shut the hell up.

OK, that won't ever happen in our lifetimes**. So much for my idealistic moment.

And thus, I reiterate:

THANKSGIVING COMES FIRST!!!


* Great White North
** Which is pretty much why so many of us are his devoted fans.
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Monday, September 28, 2009

Waddaya Gonna Do

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Newsweek recently had a good article on the cost of health care and the choices that will need to be made in the very near future. Actually, they need to be made right now. And though this article centres on the US, the same thing applies here in Canada, home of free health care.

'Cause it isn't free, not by any stretch of the imagination. I just have to look at my paycheck - over 30% of it goes to the government. So yeah, we do pay for that free health care. And I'm not begrudging the paying. At all. It's just part of the package you know?

But the cost of health care is spiraling out of control. People are living much longer, having less children and in a few years there will be more elderly than there are young people to pay for their care. Old age is extremely costly to the system, and something will have to give somewhere.

Something along the lines of who do you treat? Whose life is more valuable? A 20-year old battling cancer or an 80 year old at the end of his life? Who gets the bucks? Do you spend the money on youth and pull the plug on the elderly? When do you stop treatment?

After all, they're at the end of their lives and however much you spend on curing them, they will die - sooner rather than later. Do you forget about treatment and just keep them as comfortable as possible?

But what about when your loved one is the 80 year old. Or yourself. Despite thinking, on a logical level, yeah, let the old go, when it's your own mom or dad things might feel a little different. Nevertheless, the line will have to be drawn somewhere. Maybe the Soylent Green system of um.. doing away with people at a certain age makes a certain kind of twisted sense*. Will it come to that?


I obviously have no answers, I never do. But what do you think?


* But not eating them as green wafers though. That's just... nasty.
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Friday, September 25, 2009

Inane conversation OR I'd do well on Twitter

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You don't necessarily realize how bizarre a conversation is until you have it on IM. And it's saved. And you can read it again.


She - Patience, grasshopper

Me - Why grasshopper?


She - Why not? "patience, seaweed!" doesn't make any sense

Me - Well all things considered, nor does grasshopper

She - Makes more sense than monkey

Me - How so? It seems a monkey would be much more prone to impatience.

She - Alright, alright. Patience, monkey. Even better - patience, monkeyhopper!

Me - Monkeyhopper?

She - Mhm. I used both, see. Cause monkeys hop

Me - Patience, monkey.... patience, grasshopper. Grasshopper sounds better. Besides monkeys don't hop. They scamper.

She - Grassmonkey? Patience, grassmonkey.

Me - Crows hop. On the ground.

She - Grass-scamper. that's hard to fit into one word. Cause you need to use a - or say grasscamper, in which case it sounds like grass camper, which is just silly



So many of my conversations seem to end up sounding this way. Is this my conversational norm?

It's a scary thought.

Edit: I forgot to add that "she" is the infamous Choochoo
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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Cotttage Vignettes Redux

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I searched long and hard for a picture to go with this one, but nothing is... shall we say, appropriate for general viewing*. Thus it remains illustrationless. That, I think is a good thing.


One of the most wonderful things about cottage technology is the septic tank. Oh yeah, you gotta luuuuuuuve the septic tank.

Accumulator of all things nasty, the whole idea behind it is that the town has no need to pay for installation and upkeep of sewers. Instead you have your own personal little sewer system right next to the house. How cool is that? Yeah, not particularly.

Of course, unlike your municipal sewers, the septic system must be emptied now and again.

Last weekend was now.

You've all seen pictures of our lovely cottage perched on its hill. Well, the septic tank is perched on the hill too. Waaaay up there on the hill. About 70 feet up, 130 feet from the nice shiny poop vacuuming truck.

The driver and poop vacuuming operator wasn't thrilled at the idea of hauling his vacuum hose up 70 feet of hill. So he called into his boss "Hey, is there a truck around with two guys who could take this one?"

Answer: "Nope, you're stuck doing it."

Poop vacuumer: "You owe me" He listens a bit, laughs and hangs up. Then says, "He said, Yeah, I know, I did that place once and swore never again".

Nice to know my reputation precedes me. I can't help but wonder if there will come a time when they will refuse to do this job for me - and if that is the case, what will I be reduced to... He breaks into my philosophical reflection saying, "Well. You up to helping me get the hose up there?"

Never one to refuse a challenge (I really gotta think long and hard about that life rule, I do), I said sure.

Now it's not like I was the one hauling the hose up the hill. All I had to do was unroll the thing. And lordy that's a lot of heavy ass hose to unroll. A lot of huge damn hose. The thing is probably 5-6 inches in diameter. Of course, considering what flows through it... well, let's not consider that, shall we?

So all in all it was very interesting. I learned it takes a while to vacuum a septic tank, quite a while. I learned the trucks cost around half a million bucks - though why you'd get into the poop business in the first place is beyond me. Public service I guess. Very lucrative public service.

As he worked, I learned he'd been doing this for 25 years. "A damn good argument for higher education", he noted.

Interesting argument, but I beg to differ.

After all, Choochoo has a masters degree and her specialty is poop bugs. Hell, the woman could make a field trip to study my septic tank!

I guess it only goes to prove that whatever your level of edumacation, it's all about... well, never mind you get the picture.

* read : disgusting pics of septic tanks.
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Friday, September 18, 2009

Amazing Home Remedies

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1. Avoid cutting yourself when slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold the vegetables while you chop.

2. Avoid arguments with the females about lifting the toilet seat by using the sink. (Though, isn't it as easy for us to put it down as it is for them to put it up??)

3. For high blood pressure sufferers - simply cut yourself and bleed fro a few minutes, thus reducing the pressure on your veins. Remember to use a timer
.

4. A mouse trap placed on top of your alarm clock will prevent you from rolling over and going back to sleep after you hit the snooze button.



5. If you have a bad cough, take a large dose of laxatives. Then you'll be afraid to cough.


6. You only need two tools in life - WD-40 and duct tape. If it doesn't move and should, use WD-40. If it shouldn't move and does, use the duct tape.


7. If you can's fix it with a hammer, you've got an electrical problem.

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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Mind Boggles

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Damn I'm glad I'm Canadian...

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I thought I'd add this one Rice posted yesterday as a look at the other side. 'Cause all these people who are all rightous and don't give a damn about those who don't, they really should see what can (and does) happen with the insurance companies.



And as Rachel states in her blog post here, people brandish the specter of evil socialism and communism without knowing what socialism actually is:

"I’m really sick of health care opponents throwing the word “socialism!” around like it’s a bad thing. I’m also really sick of people cringing from that word in blind fear without at least understanding what that word really means. To put it in simplistic terms, socialism is public property or services paid for by taxes. The post office is socialist. The library is socialist. The police and fire departments are socialist, as are the water and sewage treatment plants. Social security, medicare, highways, prisons and the military, all are socialist. The public schools are socialist. The very foundations of our society, upon which we live and breathe and depend on every day, are socialist!"

Monday, September 14, 2009

Ze links

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Last week, at Jocelyn's request, I posted the story of my beginnings with Mr. Jazz . In the comments, Ian noted that it would be fun to ask for people's stories. We did and as promised I've linked to them below. If you posted and I forgot you, please let me know and I'll add a link to your story.

You'll find BB's story here

Ian's is here

Here is Jeaux's

Pouty Lips wrote about it here

Geewits did it a while back, years actually, this is hers

And here is Birdies story, via Jeaux

And Birdie just pointed out that Big Island Jeep Guy also played. How cool, I didn't even know this blog existed until now...



A couple were posted directly in the comments:

Expat from Hell

Standing in the middle of the gymnasium floor, a mutual friend introduces me to a girl from Texas (a novelty in Southern California). "What do you have there?", he asks. "Waah, theez are maah tennis shoooz", she replies in that drawn out Southern slang. I was smitten on the spot - forever. I remain so 35 years later.

ChooChoo

I discovered he was married. That was a helluva turn-off. Never been quite that turned off in my whole, entire life, really.
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Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday Geography Lesson

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The geography of a woman

Between 18 and 22, a woman is like Africa - half discovered, half wild, fertile and naturally beautiful!

Between 23 and 30, a woman is like Europe - well developed and open to trade, especially for someone of real value.

Between 31 and 35, a woman is like Spain - very hot, relaxed and convinced of her own beauty.

Between 36 and 40, a woman is like Greece - gently aging but still a warm and desirable place to visit.

Between 41 and 50, a woman is like Great Britain - with a glorious and all conquering past.

Between 51 and 60, a woman is like Israel - has been through war, doesn't make the same mistakes twice, takes care of business.

Between 61 and 70, a woman is like Canada - self-preserving, but open to meeting new people.

After 70, she becomes Tibet - wildly beautiful, with a mysterious past and the wisdom of the ages, an adventurous spirit and a thirst for spiritual knowledge.

The geography of a man

Between 1 and 80, a man is like Iran - ruled by nuts.
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Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Back to Reality

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Labour Day weekend has come and gone. It's fun and sort of sad all at once. Let down and anticipation. The end of play and the beginning of work.

Unlike Ian, I always loved going back to school. There was a wonderful anticipation, the buying of supplies, the new notebooks an pencils, pulling out my pencil case (a leather one which my mother bought me in first grade and which I used until the end of university and still have today), the new clothes - and later the new uniform (bleh), it was all such fun. And I'm sure my mom was overjoyed too, as mothers are no doubt wont to be after a summe spent with the kids.


By the end of summer I was somewhat bored (though I'd never ever have admitted it) and school was a welcome distraction - if only for all the new books I'd get to read. I couldn't wait for the first visit to the library in the school year. Yes I was one of those nerdy kids who loved school and thrived in that environment. Even the fact of having to sit still for hours was overwhelmed by the sheer joy of learning.

For years after having finished school, and into my working life September still meant back to school, albeit in a nostalgic way. I'd wake up one morning with the anticipation of a new year, just to realize that, damn, it was just another work day at the office.

Now back to school means a whole different thing.

Back to school means my favourite lunch spots overrun with screeching teenagers. With boys in pants seven times too big hanging below (yes, BELOW) their butts. A couple of years ago, they'd just hang low on their hips so you could see their skivvies, now, they're under their butts, yep, they are. How the hell they stay up is a mystery I'll no doubt never solve (unless someone out there knows and can share with me?). And they don't even have good butts to show off for the most part. And I can't wait to see someone lose them sometime. But I digress yet again.

And the simpering teenage girls with their too tight clothes - how is it that female clothes seem to shrink proportionally to the "enbiggening" of male attire? If we go back to early 90s huge tunics and such, will mens fashion shrink again? The girls who shriek and holler even louder than the boys and have the added interest of way too much perfume and underwear hanging out?

So yeah, sharing my favourite lunch spots with a bunch of screeching teenagers, and the bus home with another batch of them. I'm sure I was no better at that age (though I was a nerd, so perhaps I was marginally better, the nerds seem to be) relatively speaking, but I'm my age now dammit and I've earned the right to bitch about the lack of manners and general bad attitude of the young'uns, yes I have. They're a bunch of uncivilized heathens they are.

And people, I have to admit I loathe them with a vengeance these days, they drive me fucking insane. I don't hate individual kids - well not most of them at any rate, though some deserve to be hated. Individually, they're usually quite entertaining, but as a group - damn they're annoying. If there is a civilizing influence in their lives, I shudder to think what they would be without it.

And so, I contemplate another 10 months of hellish lunch hours. Or of brown bagging it - I dunno which is the worst alternative. I imagine that I'll eventually get used to them again, it's either that or I'll have to jam my plastic fork up my nose and pull out my brains.
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