Sunday, August 31, 2008

The P Word

I have come to accept that I am the Queen of Procrastination. It started in high school, only back then I procrastinated until it was too late to actually get the assignment done on time. Then in college, when the assignments were on subjects I liked for courses I picked (and more importantly that I had paid for myself) I started to know the joy of the rush of pulling all- nighters and slipping the assignment on the teachers desk with .04 seconds left on the clock. And I also started to know the joy of the good grades, because despite my rushing and blurry 3am musings on Huck Fin or American history or whatever the assignment, I started pulling my best grades ever.

Now, as a freelance writer, I still suffer from the need for speed. The need to wait until the last possible minute to get an assignment done. I truly believe that it makes my work better, stronger and helps me focus..... despite what my mother, and the Girl Scouts, tried to teach me about "being prepared".

Now if you'l excuse me I have a 750 word article due tomorrow at 10am. I've got a nap to take, some TV to watch, a dog to walk, a nose to pick and then.... eventually.... an article to write.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Blue Romance

Today I've spent the better part of my day watching Katharine Hepburn movies. I started with Stage Door (1937) then The Philadelphia Story (1940), Pat and Mike (1952) and now Woman of the Year (1942).

I love Katharine Hepburn. In her movies she always seemed to play the hard-headed, take all risks, pre-Feminism feminist, stand on her own two hands type of woman. In her life she'd battled against the big boys of the Film Industry and won more times than she lost. She was outspoken, brash, crude, athletic, lithe, sharp tongued and seemed glamorous even when being foolish.

What's bothering me is her relationship with Spencer Tracy. Here is a woman who seemed to have it all and all was hers for the having and yet she devoted the better part of her life to a man she could never have. Knowing Tracy, a devout Catholic, would never divorce his wife she still seemed content to be the other woman, second fiddle, the never-would-be. A lot of people look at the Tracy/Hepburn affair as one of the greatest love stories ever told and yet I have to wonder why? True, they were in love but it was a love kept in a closet of sorts. And she seemed content with that. Why? Why not let yourself have all you can in love? Why did she settle for meek, dark cornered, submissive love when she deserved brash, outspoken, hard-headed, light-of-day love?

Maybe for Hepburn having just a part of happiness was better than none at all. As I get older I have to wonder if it's better to settle and compromise to get a part of happiness or stick to my guns and risk no happiness at all.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Nail This

My mother has beautiful, strong nails that she could tear a house down with and still not even get a chip. Since I was a little girl I have been jealous of my mother's nails. Unfortunately I didn't get them in the Great Genetic Divide; I did however get my mother's ability and desire to work with my hands - gardening, sewing, construction and the like. I don't have the girliest looking hands; in fact I have recently been told that I have the "hands of a Welsh miner".

It's a rare thing when my nails will grow and stay longer than a few millimetres past my fingertips. Imagine my surprise when I woke up a few weeks ago to realize that my nails have grown quite long and stayed there. I've been convinced that I will wake up one morning and they all will have spontaneously fallen off in my sleep, typical long nail paranoia.

I've been very good about being nice to my new long nails. I file them delicately, moisturize as often as possible, paint them with clear coat for extra protection, take extra Omega suppliments and avoid tearing apart drywall with my bare hands. Just as I thought my new girly hands might be here to stay, WHAMO! I break one. Not all the way, just a nice jagged, below-the-fingertip tear. It's happened before but this time I thought I'd try a little trick I'd read about years ago.

Take a small piece of tissue and lay it over the ripped part of the nail. Coat the nail with a thin coat of clear nail polish. Once that dries put on two more coats of increasingly thicker clear polish. Once the polish is completely dry use a fine emery board to gently buff the excess from the edge of your nail and voila! A do-it-yourself nail wrap to save the nail.

So far it's lasted through two days of typing at work and all the usual things that should destroy your nails - zippers, dishes, opening soda cans and the occasional nervous nail gnaw. To be sure that I won't lose the nail I'll head to a professional manicurist tomorrow to get a proper nail wrap but the tissue/polish combo sure has lived up to my expectations.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Double-Edged Sword

How many times has someone said to you "I've got good news and I've got bad news. Which do you want first?"
I woke up with this on my mind and well, wanted to know other people's answers? Which do you want first? There is rationale for both.

Take the good news first, then when you hear the bad it's buffered by the good. Good news, if it's good enough, can change your perspective on the bad. For example if you boyfriend says to you "The good news is I want to marry you and spend the rst of my life with you. The bad news is I kinda drove your car into a tree." (I personally wouldn't give a shit about the car).

Take the bad news first because then the good seems even better. Also you get the ugly out of the way and can concentrate on the good. For example your boss says "The bad news is we're down-sizing and your whole department is axed. The good news is your severance is 3 years pay."

It's kinda a glass half emtpy/half full question, which I also dislike.

So what are your thoughts - Good news first or bad news first?

My answer: I'll take the good news and you can shove the bad up yer arse.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

You've Got Romantic Comedy

At the end of You’ve Got Mail Meg Ryan's character speaks the words “I wanted it to be you. I wanted it to be you so badly”. I just realized how bloody insulting that line is. She’s such an idiot that she doesn’t realize that Tom Hanks' character is the guy she’s been chatting with online even though he seems to have a 6th sense about everything the online guy is going to do and say?

After developing a deep relationship with a man who was her sworn enemy and then having an amazing day with him why didn’t she have the guts to say “You know what, I don’t want to meet this mystery man because I’m in love with you”? Or if she did have an idea that Online Man and Sworn Enemy Who I'm Falling For were the same person, why she didn’t have the ovaries to ask him outright? Or if she did know, she was totally fine being strung along and manipulated by him on the slimmest of chances that she would get the fairytale ending she's always wanted?

I’m also annoyed with myself because while I should be working, I have let my train of thought derail so badly that I've wasted over 20 minutes analyzing the end line of a ten-year-old Nora Ephron film.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Law and Order is Making Me Fat

According to new research by a professor at Erasmus University, people who are thinking about their own deaths want to consume more.

As in EAT MORE and SHOP MORE.

Here's the quote : “Consumers, especially those with a lower self-esteem, might be more susceptible to over-consumption when faced with images of death during the news or their favorite crime-scene investigation shows.”

Man. That explains EVERYTHING.

What does Gmail think of you?

So I had a conversation with some girlfriends this weekend and one of them had an interesting revelation. Apparently Gmail scans your emails and picks up on keywords, then they choose the ads they place on your gmail page accordingly. One friend who was recently married said she was seeing a lot of photographer ads and vacation packages. I personally have never looked at the ads beside my emails but became intrigued and went back to look at them.

Here's what gmail thinks I'd be interested in:

Germany's News in English - breaking news, views and chats from Germany.
Hmm... never been to Germany, never thought about Gemany, don't know any Germans. Apparently gmail thinks I need to get out more. travel the world. Thanks for the tip, gmail.

$250,000 Income Potential - Entrepeneurs wanted. No selling. Turnkey system.
Apparently gmail thinks Ijust fell off a turnip truck and am scam-able. Bite me gmail.

Toxic Tort Lawyers - Helping Chemical Exposure Victims.
Really? What? Do you know something I don't gmail??? Should I make Dr's appointment?!

I don't know what words they are grabbing from my emails, but it's not the right ones. I should be getting ads for debt consolidation, immigration laywers and dating websites. Gmail, you don't know me at all.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Innocent Compliment

I was watching a video of my best friend’s daughter today and I have to say, I love the distracted way that children take compliments. The very offhanded way they say “yes” when told that something they made is beautiful or the way they sing is lovely. If an adult were to take a compliment the same way some would call it egotistical but the innocence of a child makes it so pure – all they are doing is acknowledging that what you said was fact. No ego, no self-centeredness, no false pretences. They don’t think you’re blowing smoke up their ass, they don’t think that you’re being nice to get something from them and they don’t think you’re just being polite. You stated a fact and they are agreeing; no more, no less.

I have a hard time taking compliments. Somewhere along the way I got it in my head that acknowledging a compliment with a “thank you” or “that’s nice of you to say” makes me self-centered and full of myself. Or that if someone is paying me a compliment they must want something from me or are lying to lower my defences, make me vulnerable and gain the upper hand.

I am going to try very hard this weekend to take every compliment that comes my way as if I’m a 3-year-old. I’ll take whatever it is the other person is saying as an obvious truth, thank them and carry on.

Perfect

I take issue with the photos of perfect love shown on internet dating sites - photos where relationships are portrayed as pure, and clean, and white; unwrinkled, unsullied, blonde and happy.

This is love? These are the relationships we are striving to have? No wonder we always feel so completely inadequate in our own sad, hairy, smelly, squalid, screaming, stained, sordid little love nests. NOBODY'S relationship looks like that indefinitely.

NOBODY'S.

America's Near Miss

I feel theneed to comment on politics. Weird I know but this whole debacle with John Edwards cheating on his wife has me shocked and disappointed. When the whole Monica Lewinsky thing happened with Bill Clinton, I was in Bill's court. My opinion was, his personal life is his personal life - had no effect on his ability to run a country - and it's up to Hilary to punish him not the nation. I didn't judge him. If anything I judged Hilary for not kicking his ass to the curb. But as it turns out, she had her own career agendas and needed him, inappropriate cigar recepticles and all.

Because I didn't judge Bill, I didn't expect to judge John Edwards. But then Edwards opened his mouth. And yeah, I'm judging. And thanking God this idiot didn't get the Democratic nomination. Edwards excuse for cheating wasn't that the marriage was going through a difficult time, or he was growing apart from his wife, or he was lonely on the campaign trail. No it was this: "I went from being a senator, a young senator to being considered for vice president, running for president, being a vice presidential candidate and becoming a national public figure. All of which fed a self-focus, an egotism, a narcissism that leads you to believe that you can do whatever you want. You're invincible. And there will be no consequences."

Holy crap, seriously? You got "drunk with power." That's your big rationale?! That makes it okay to cheat on your wife who has terminal breast cancer? Hey John! You're an asshat!

Being so responsive to the ass-licking that goes on in American Politics I can only imagine that had Edwards become president he would have bended to the whims and wishes of whoever stroked his monolithic ego.

"Sure, I know we should get our troops out of Iraq but the Republicans told me I look awesome today and well, they'll keep telling me how awesome I am as long as I keep letting young boys die in Iraq so we're staying!"

"This is your President John Edwards. I'm having a bad hair day today and Stephen Harper gave me a funny look at our Summit today so we're invading Canada."

"I've decided that all female White House pages should have to go topless on Tuesdays. I can't do that?! Of course I can, I'm the leader. I can do whatever I want! If you don't like it, I'll deport you... even if you were born here. I don't care, I can do whatever I want. Gotta love me!"

It's so sad that this man who seemed to have potential - who seemed to be someone who could bring potential to a country that has had the potential beaten out of it over the last 8 years - could, in one statement, turn into the biggest mistake America almost made.

I honestly think, with an ego that fragile and a morale compass so easily influenced, that John Edwards would have been a bigger mistake than George W ever was.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Matchmaker, matchmaker...

I’ve been watching a show called Millionaire Matchmaker. It’s your average dating show with the added bonus that the men looking for love all have very large … assets.

I've not been watching the show very long but two men in particular caught my attention.

One was a 40-something man looking for a grounded, 30-something, non-actress/model type woman. On the day of his big meet and greet he shunned all of the women he had asked for and chose a 25-year-old actress/model for his first date. He ignored Patti's warnings that it wouldn't go well and went out with the "young chippy". Lo and behold the date was a bust. One snippet of their date conversation stuck with me:
He: “… because it's important to give back. Did you know that thousands of people go hungry in LA every day?” She: “I know what you mean. I gave up carbs”. Needless to say he went back to Patti with his tail between his legs and agreed to her terms. He has now dated the type of woman that he said he was looking for and is very happy.

The second man, again a 40-something never been married, insisted that he wanted to meet women in their mid-20s to early-30s. The matchmaker insisted that he be dating women in their mid to late 30s. The man seemed to balk at this and when told “There is a world of difference between a person in their early 20s and a man in their early 40s” he insisted that “age is just a number” and that he could find a “25-year-old with an old soul”. What baffles me is that he’s using his own logic to deny himself love. If age is just a number than what’s wrong with dating someone with a number closer to your own? I don’t think he’s looking for and “old soul” I think he’s looking for “young tits”.

They say that once you know what you want it's almost impossible not to find it. These are two men who claim to know exactly what they want in a relationship and yet both seem to be going against their own instincts.

Perhaps if these men, and many others, could let their little heads shut up for a second and concentrate on what the big head is saying it might be that much easier find what they’re looking for.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Wine Whine


I have to say I think this woman has too much time on her hands. I understand pairing wine with different foods that aren't considered "high class" but fast food? Seems she's definitely catering to the type of person who would be found "putting rhinestones on their jeans".
I mean, doesn't everyone knows that KFC is best paired with Pabst Blue Ribbon?


That being said a friend of mine and I figured out which reds go best with mint M&Ms when we were in college. Our palates have matured since then. Mint M&Ms with red wine, how silly! We should have gone with a riesling.

Oh For Crying Out Loud

Two quotes from this spectacularly horrifying little column by Miriam Silverberg I found in a free paper called Epoch Times, which I picked up while grocery shopping :



(1) Most women look better with clothes than without.

(2) Being pregnant is a wonderful, glorious time in a woman's life and she can and should look her best. To my mind that does not include accentuating her huge belly.

Bugger off, Miriam.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Selfish and Green

I've been volunteering on the executive for the local green party, and it has started to piss me off - mostly because it feels like we're just not getting through to people. They've always got somewhere else to be, something else to to, and it is nearly impossible to convince anyone to change. They may wish to be noble and good, but when it comes down to the crunch, they look away, put their fingers in their ears, and keep doing things the way they've always been done.

So I had a thought today. Why not appeal to the less noble instincts? Like this :

If you won't do it for the environment, the world, the future.. then do it for yourself.

  • Go vegan because 97% of vegans live longer, get less cancer, are orgasmic, less depressed and more in love.
  • Stop eating meat and using plastic to store your food, and menopause won't hit so hard because your hormones won't be completely out of whack.
  • Stop eating dairy, and your hair will stop falling out, because your body will finally be able to absorb iron.
  • Stop buying expensive processed foods and your bank account will thank you.
  • Stop feeding your children junk food and sugary crap and you'll find them turning back into calm, responsive and loving family members.
  • Use less water and your water bill will be lower.
  • Turn off all those lights - we all look better by candle light anyway.
  • Air dry your clothes and your hydro bill will go down.
  • Quit smoking and your face won't get as wrinkled.
  • Ride your bicycle or walk instead of drive and your body will be more beautiful.
  • Use fewer toxic body care products and your skin will clear up.
  • Donate to green charities and you'll get a hefty tax refund.
  • Donate to the green party and you'll get an even more hefty tax refund.

Do yourself a favour.. live green.

Ducks and Stuff

This is a video of a duck I shot in Lost Lagoon today. I thought it looked like the duck was sitting on the sky:



video


This is a photo of a duck:

This is a photo of a swan:


This is a photo of a stranger talking to and feeding the ducks and swans:


This is a photo of a rose that I thought looked cool:

And that was my morning.

I'm a 10!

I went bathing suit shopping the other day. Why? Because I was feeling way too good about myself lately and the quickest way to depress yourself as a women over the age of 12 is to go bathing suit shoping. Seriously, I live in Los Angeles now, and there are beaches and well... snowsuits don't make for an even tan.

I go into this store that shall remain nameless (because I honestly don't remember the name, but it had the word "swim" in it I think) and I start looking. It's divided up by size. There's an area for size 4, size 6, size 8, size 10, size 12 and size 14. Now this is weird to me because most swimsuit stores I've been in have their stuff sized Small, Medium, Large, XL.

The sales lady visually sizes me up and tells me to look in the size 6 rack. I think that makes sense because in clothing stores I am anywhere from a size 4 to a 7 depending on the store. I grab a few size 6 suits and head to the changing room. I can't get any of the bathing suits over my ass. Not a one. I head back out, confused and look for size 7s. They don't have size 7s so I go to the size 8 rack. I find a few there I like and take them back.

I find one I love that fits.... but it's a little tight. The kind of tight that makes your back fat bunch up under your armpits and gives you the oh-so-not-sexy muffin top. As I am walking back out... ready to wave the white flag on bathing suit shopping and start starving myself asap I see the exact same suit on the size 10 rack.

I'm not a size 10. If I was to wear a 10 in jeans I could pull them on without undoing them. here is nothing wrong with being a 10. I know tons of 10s and they are fine wonderful, fit people. But I am not a 10. It's weird how you learn to identify with a size system but you do and I did and my size has never been bigger than a 7.

Anyway, I pick it up and examine it and for the first time look at the tags sewn into the bahting suit instead of the sizes marked by the store on the racks. I see that although the store has stuck it on the rack marked "10" it actually says "medium" on the tags. I look at the one I had tried on from the "8" rack and it's marked "small". The 4/6 rack are actually "extra small and "extra-extra small".

WTF?!

So I take the "medium" and I try it on and it fits perfectly. It's awesome. I love it - and I haven't loved a bikini since I was 14. So I go to the cash to buy it..... this is the conversation that ensues with the cashier.

CASHIER: So you found something you like?

ME: Yeah, I love it.

CASHIER: I thought you had me put this one back earlier? You changed your mind?

ME: No it's the same suit but a different size. The 6 and 8 didn't fit.

CASHIER: It's a 10?

ME: It's a medium.

CASHIER: Huh, I never would have thought you were a 10. You hide it well.

ME: Wow, way to kick start an eating disorder. Thanks.

I'm 5'7 and 126 pounds, what ,exactly, am I "hiding well"??????

I should have walked out. I shouldn't have given her my money. But seriously, that would mean I would have to go and do this to my self-esteem all over again somewhere else. And that option was way more unappealing than just giving her my money and taking my size "10" (and by "10" I mean "medium") ass home.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Infinity + 1

This is the kind of shit I think about when I walk to and from work. And fart jokes, always with the fart jokes.

Some people say that God is not something outside of ourselves but within us. That God is the Universe and we are made of the same substance as the Universe therefore we are the Universe and we are God, each and every one of us.
At the very heart of the atoms that make up our beings we are created of basically Nothing. We are nothing but pure Energy and pure Nothingness.
If we are in ourselves the Universe and therefore God, do we ourselves not create and control our Destinies?
Perhaps that is true, but what if the Destiny I create for myself is completely contrary to the Destiny of another? Who's energy and destiny wins?
What makes the energy in one stronger than the energy of another?
And if we are to believe that there is a finite amount of energy in the Universe, spread throughout all of us, and that there are more beings on the Earth than at any other time in history, are we in fact weakening the basic energy that controls us all?
Are we stealing energy from others, for every other species that we destroy are we strengthening ourselves or weakening the power?
Are we destroying the Universe? Have we weakened God? Are we slowly killing ourselves by making ourselves stronger?

I have a lot of time on my hands. It's a long walk home.

Infinity

An agnostic : a person who claims that they cannot have true knowledge about the existence of god - but does not deny that god might exist.

From Life of Pi , regarding agnosticism : to choose doubt as a philosophy of life is akin to choosing immobility as a means of transportation.

But, it is a given that the universe is infinitely vast, nicht wa? So does it not follow that within this infinite vastness must exist an infinite number of things, an infinite number of possibilities? So, just as there must be a world where people are blue and made of cheese, and another one where my exact double lives a life completely parallel to my own.. is there not a place in this infinity for gods?

Yes, even an old man with a beard, sitting on a cloud.

Not that I believe that, it is so obviously ludicrous. But on the other hand, it seems a little presumptuous to make sweeping statements about what can not possibly exist, in a universe filled with infinite possibility.

Running On Empty

I went for a run this morning. I haven't been running in a while because I hate running. More specifically, I hate runners.
While out for my run at 7:30 this morning, I realized that there are a lot of frustrated and single people in Vancouver.

The kind of people that go running at 7:30am are different than those who go out later in the day. The later day runners are the breed that I hate, they're the ones running to better their health, to live longer, lower their cholesterol, strengthen their immune system. The earlier day or later night runners are the ones I like – mostly because I'm a part of that group – they're (we're) the ones out running because we've got something to run from. You see, no one gets up at 7:30 in the morning to go for a run because they WANT to, they go because something (or someone) has forced them into their shoes and out the door.

We don't give a shit about our overall health, chances are one in five of us smoke and one in three drinks above the moderation level. We run because we don't talk. We run because we're full of frustration and can't masturbate anymore without doing serious damage. We run because we can't stand up for ourselves and ask for what we want. We run because it's easier to run from our demons than to face them head on.

Don't get me wrong, we do all those things we mentioned above. Sometimes we meditate to get it all back into alignment, sometimes we fast away the emotional toxins. Sometimes we paint or write it all out. Sometimes we even fuck our frustrations away. But sometimes, we need to run – run until our heart feels like it's going to burst in our chest, that our lungs are going to collapse in on themselves, like our knees are going to shatter like icicles falling from the eaves on a frozen winter night. There are times that the only thing that will get the crap out from between our ears is to run and get angry and spit and get sweaty and snotty.

I know that I'm not a late morning or early afternoon runner because as I sit and write this I'm enjoying a cigarette.

Some people go to therapy, some people mediate or do yoga. Some people shop or drink or eat to get the crap out. Sometimes I do those things, but sometimes in the early light of a Sunday morning when the Saturday night has been uneventful and full of frustrations that no dream can take away, I get up and I put on my shoes and my toque and my sweats and I run. I throw Sugar Ray into my discman and enjoy some me time with Mark McGrath. Sometimes it's King Apparatus, sometimes it's the soundtrack to the Blues Brothers. Sometimes I'm not even running or walking, sometimes I'm the weirdo who's dancing down the seawall to a soundtrack that only I can hear.

Real Comics Don't Need Underwear Pics

I'm a comic. That means I stand up on stage in front of strangers and try to make them laugh. The requirements for this job aren't much. You need a microphone, a stage, a stool, and an ability to say something funny. But in recent years another tool has become an integral part of a comic's life (and an actor's, and a model's, and a musicians) it's Myspace. I get the benefits to Myspace when it comes to marketing and advertising for people like myself in the entertainment field. It sure as hell beats stapling posters to lamposts everytime you have a show. However this awesome tool has also created something that makes me a little sick. Like that did the dog just kiss me after he licked his ass? kinda sick.

Because Myspace has compelled smart, funny and talented people to forgo the professional headshots and post pictures of themselves in ..... well, not much. I recently "friended" April Macie. April is a comic who was seen on Last Comic Standing a few seasons ago. If you look at April Macie's gallery of photos, she has several where she appears in what can - at best - be described as the underwear of a 5 year old girl. And you can tell it belongs to a 5 year old girl not just because it's frilly and pink but because it apparently doesn't fit April at all. She's even tugging at it (I can only assume in order to prevent it from cutting off her circulation or crushing a kidney) in one of the photos. Pulling on it so hard and pushing it down so low that you can almost see her va-jay-jay. Poor thing.

Not only do I not see the point to wearing a 5 year old's underwear, but I don't see the point to wearing it, getting your picture taken in it and posting it under your comedy profile.

If you are a porn star, a hooker or a stripper and you're trying to get people to; buy your lastest Gang Bang flick, come to your corner for a hand job or come to your club where you can wow them with your amazing lapdance skills, then fine, post that type of picture. It will bring you the type of attention that your career needs. If you're a female comic with underwear shots plastered across your myspace comedy profile, I'm willing to bet people don't look at that and think "Wow, she must be really funny. We should check out her act." Unless of course you have a third nipple clearly visible or better yet a third breast or a penis hanging out of your thong - then you might be considered funny on the merrits of your underwear shots.

And by "funny" I mean "funny-peculiar", not "funny-ha-ha".

I guess some women think that the fact that they are young, thin and hot should somehow help them in comedy,but unfortunately it doesn't. What helps is spending your time writing funny jokes and working your butt off to get stage time. If some of these female comics spent more time doing that instead of shopping in the children's section of Target, maybe they'd have 12,000 people coming to their shows instead of 12,0000 myspace friends and a crushed kidney.