Monday, December 17, 2007

moving to another place

Is it normal to think a lot about moving to another place? Especially in winter I have the thought of picking up and starting something fresh and new at least seventeen times (literally) a day.

My mind is busy with messages like these:

move out
quit your job
leave here
travel travel travel
this is not your place
this is not your home
start over

I've made it over a year in my job and over a year in my current place, yet these thoughts never seem to leave me. As a possible remedy, I researched buying a bed. It seemed symbolic of taking root. I called Sleep Country and remembered how much I HATE mattress salesmen. One step up from used car salesmen.

Now I have this anxiety ball in my stomach so I decided to blog and then exercise. Big shocker - going climbing with HP. I hate everyone today but luckily not him. He was excited because usually when I get a hate on, he's public enemy number one. He attributes it to the climbing.

Just talked to him - change of plans... ribs! (Comfort food!)

Bye

D

Sunday, December 16, 2007

hand on leg

I had a lot of wine last night and should be sleeping but here I am drinkin' water, headachin' and blogging it out.

Get ready for a story and discussion/reflection.

Story

(Honesty Rating (H.R.): med-high, Entertainment Value (E.V.): med-high (much better than yet another climbing story)

Last night I went to a Christmas party hosted by a friend from work.  She is a few years older with a partner and young son but the party was not a coupley lame-ass affair with pervasive diaper talk.  It was a great time with awesome food and plenty o' booze.  There were 40+ people expected to attend and on Friday, she was reflecting on whether there would be any single men whom I might like in attendance.  She thought of a few...

So she went through and explained this or that guy: tall, smart, financially stable, successful, funny, homeowner, 'great guy', etc.  On a sidebar, I think it is funny the adjectives we use to describe men or women when considering them as potential dates or partners.  On another sidebar, it is interesting how many other items on the list women are willing to trade up for 'tall'.   Anyway, I did my 'off dating' bit and just laughed along through the conversation.  

I dolled up for the party and arrived with Harry and Evan, two friends I work with (wearing my kickass new snow boots just in time for the blizzard! Yippee!)  As we started mingling, working the scene, if you will, in the back of my mind, I wondered who in the crowd of many strangers were the men my friend had described.  (Incidentally, I believe only 1 of them showed up on account of the weather...)

So I see this guy across the room (how cliche) and immediately that indescribable energy, something, prompts me to send his way the biggest, cutest smile I've got.  As some of you may know, this is quite a smile.  I had absolutely no idea if he was single or if one of the mini humans running around the kitchen were his contribution to species propagation.  The traits of this man were some of the usual for me:

- Big features: eyes and smile
- Tall and large (ie burly, not skinny at all.  Slightly heavy rather than rail thin.)
- Friendly: smiling and social, outgoing
- Glint o' laughter and trouble in the eyes and smile indicating playful, clever sense of humour
- Apparent ethnicity: Some percentage (ie 50% or less) black.  So he was light brown :)
- Dressed very casually - jeans, fleece.  No metrosexuality.
- Very confident

Soon we were introduced and he was sure he had met me somewhere.  I clarified that my smile earlier was charm and not recognition as we had never met before.  We chatted amidst a group of people and then it was time to go downstairs for the next course in the meal...  and in my mind, the game was on.  I knew within 3 seconds that I liked him and at the very least, my body had the clear intention of pursuit.  (Pursuit of meat suit)  

I made no mention to the hostess or any of my friends. Turns out he is her husband's poker buddy and wasn't even in the list of 'eligible' men she had thought about earlier.  As is the way, I had to pursue with subtlety.  I play a good cat and mouse.    I just worked the friendly and funny angle and mingled a lot with everyone.  The booze was flowing.  He emerged as quite a drinker and a smoker.  Clearly, he was a 'character'.  Harry would say, 'a big personality'.  He had this bad boy, devil may care thing going on.  In spite of several conversations, I had no idea of his occupation, education, status... etc.  Got the sense though, that there was nothing impressive to find out or I would have found it out!  Didn't care!

So we got to playing poker.  We were sitting beside each other (what a coincidence!) around the cramped poker table.   By now this guy had his leg very close to mine and every once in a while he gave my leg a squeeze with his hand.  Another sidebar:  Isn't the hand on leg electric?   I think hand on leg is the tipping point that acknowledges mutual sexual attraction.  When a man puts his hand on a woman's leg for the first time, it charts the course for what will come.  His hand wants to be up her skirt and between her legs!  Further, it indicates that he has received sufficient sexual signals from her to be so bold.  If she welcomes hand on leg, she will likely welcome head between legs etc. (Caveat: Social situation permitting, and not necessarily on the same evening! but viscerally (ie in the meat suit, monkeybrain connection) this holds true)

So isn't this fun?  Sneaky covert flirtation amongst a table of the drunk and oblivious.  Of course the hours moved along and Harry (who lives down the street) was aggressively trying to get me to leave.  Harry was telling me to go all in.  The boy I liked was giving me more chips. :) Sadly, eventually Harry won out and we headed upstairs to go.

At this point, everyone was congregated in the entryway by the door.   Harry was already outside looking for the cab.  Everyone was saying goodbye.  This guy had said I should stay and be his euchre partner (euphemism, lol) and was sad I was leaving.  I was almost out the door and wondering if/how I could even get to say goodbye to him.  

Right in front of everyone, he walked up to me smiling and gave me this huge hug.  Remember he was big and fleecy and it felt so freakin' good that I nearly melted into him or straddled him or something!  Then, still right in front of everyone - he kissed me long on the lips.  Too long to be just friendly, but not 'making out'.  He whispered that I should stay.  Oh god this meat suit of mine was all 'stay stay stay STAY!'  Of course, no no no.  I couldn't stay.  It was absolutely socially impossible for me to stay.

Everyone was surprised!  They exclaimed something about this guy being 'smooth' as if he was putting moves on me, the innocent female victim.  As if he was a player.  I laughed it off and went to the cab.  There were too many people to fit in the cab but a good friend of the hostess said (outside) 'We have to get Denise in the first cab - away from M!"  (where "M"=the boy I liked.  His full name is being kept out of this entry).  Then she jokingly said to me that I should take it as an early Christmas present: "Merry Christmas!"

So Merry freakin' Christmas.  I went home.

Discussion
The story took too long and now I don't have time for much discussion.  Some thoughts:
  • Why am I here typing this instead of working on my seventh orgasm with my new friend?
  • Is it possible to regret if you do and regret if you don't?  I have been cut by both edges of this sword in the past.  I KNOW I found him attractive when sober.  I WANTED him.  I KNOW I very purposefully made him want me too.
  • Were the people at the party trying to protect me because he is of bad character? ie girlfriend? baggage? STI? man whore? flake? Or did they just assume I was being compromised as a result of alcohol?
  • I am nearly positive that he was not 'dateable' in a future-looking way.  If this is relevant, then why doesn't my body give a shit about future 'relationship potential'?  I think it wants to make big, hearty babies and all it cares about is selecting the alpha who will get up in there.  My meat suit does not give a crap if my coworkers judge me or I end up stressing about consequences (all sorts) later.  So I try to do the responsible thing and now I feel sad.  
  • Wouldn't the time have been better spent climbing???
Oh well.  All will agree, it is not always about immediate gratification but about planting seeds and letting them grow.  I will learn more about him on Monday and just let it unfold.  In the meantime... gotta run to brunch people.

xox

d



 

Saturday, December 15, 2007

chimney day!

Today I was up bright and early to climb with Paul.  It was a great climbing day but the pinnacle was when I completed the 60 ft chimney climb.  It would not be such a big deal, but for some reason climbing up a corner with crevices and angles freaks me out. 

After climbing, we had breakfast and I got to drinkin' coffay (buzz, buzz).  The coffee boosted me from regular to near exultant post-climbing euphoria.

Next was shopping at MEC.  I got:
- Warm (and cool lookin') snow boots
- Warm (and cool lookin') ski pants.  (FYI I don't ski.  These are all for staying warm in the city this winter!  I'm serious about staying warm!)
- A shoe repair kit for my climbing shoes.  I abused them too much and got a hole in one toe.
- A backpack with a place for my laptop.  It is pretty funky with even a cover for rain or snow.
- A climbing DVD for Harry's Christmas gift.
- 2 climbing books - one for me, one for Harry - known as the 'climbing bible'.  Can't wait to read it!  (The scriptures of my new religion.)

Now I am going to a party where I plan to drink some red wine and have a good time!

D

Thursday, December 13, 2007

jeepers

Tonight I went climbing with Tasha and learned (the hard way) about creepers.  This guy started talking to us while we were at the bar (exercise, not bar for drinkin') trying to act all this-is-this-and-that-is-that about chin-ups and such.  I noticed nearly immediately that he was focused on Tasha.  He then asked if we'd mind belaying him.

This was where I got concerned.  Although climbing in a three is fine with friends, I was not signing up to climb with some guy all night and get less climbs.  Soon Jamie (works there) called me over and asked me to help him with a belay check.  I climbed for a bit with a nice woman named Julia (the person getting the belay check) and figured I could stay away from the irritating guy who was laying it on thick by this point.

A little while later Jamie said "you're welcome."  We started talking and he said "that guy Dan is a creeper.  He hits on women climbers and will act all expert about climbing and the gym.  He'll drive out the partner of whomever he is focused on with the aim of getting a phone number.  As soon as he gets it, he will ease off and even start talking to other girls."  I was like "No freakin' way!  That is exactly what happened to me!"  Fucker.

The problem is Tasha is super outgoing and flirty with guys (whom she has no interest in) so there was no way he was going to back off.  I just laid low and climbed with other people.  I told Tasha what Jamie said but she did not seem to get it.   She was like 'Really? I don't find him creepy!'  She says she is clueless with this stuff.  Hmmmm.

Now I am in the foulest mood.  For me climbing is meaningful and I take the environment very seriously.  I love meeting new people there and almost all of them are great - very passionate about climbing and very helpful and community-oriented.

That guy was so effing out of line that it isn't even funny.  He won't see Tasha there often but he will see me and I will seriously tell him to beat it, if I choose to acknowledge him at all.  

You may have noticed that this has struck a nerve with me.  At bars and such growing up I was always the one guys approached to say: "Your friend is really hot" or "Hey is your friend single?"  Actually, she's fuck right off.  

I know, I know.  Serious pity party here.  Boo hoo.  Fine I say.  I get it.  I'm fine with it and frankly, bars are places where this sort of bullshit is expected, and (arguably) should at least be tolerated.  However, when I'm there, climbing with my friend, doing something that is challenging and scary and powerful, I don't need it.  I don't want one teeny reminder of the day when I sat back in fatbody and just knew that some guy talking to me wasn't really interested in me or anything I had to say.

So thanks for reading my rant.  I've already spoken to Tasha about it so I think we're good going forward.  Look out creepers.  Seriously look out.







Wednesday, December 12, 2007

i effing finished it

Yay i finished it and went climbin'!

Woo hoo! Good times to come everybody!

Climbing was exciting.  I jumped for one tonight - called a dyno.  Harry called it a dynah - the female version.  I called it a dynette because my jump was so small normal humans would not have detected it.  

It is time to step it up.  Get ready.  Seriously.  This is gonna be good.

d

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

5 interesting things from today or so

5 interesting things from today or so

1. Got a Christmas card from Barbara who was my 82 year old neighbour when I moved to Novato, CA.  I remember I was worried the first time we went out together that she would fall or get tired or something... a few months later we were walking several hundred windy winding stairs to the Point Reyes Lighthouse.  Turned out she was my old person role model - physically, intellectually, emotionally, she's just cool.  Now she lives in Santa Rosa at a Quaker retirement home called Friends House.

2. Reading a book called 'Surely You're Joking Mr. Feynman'.  If you don't know about this guy you've got to find out.  He is brilliant and eccentric - he won the Nobel Prize in physics, worked on the atomic bomb, was one of the world's greatest theoretical physicists and 'thrived on outrageous, 'eye-brow raising' adventures.  Very artsy creative too.  I love people who combine social and intellectual intelligence. 

3.  My blog now comes up in google searches.  Try searching for it using "monkeybrain meat suit".

4. I have nearly finished my big ass paper for my Organizational Democracy course.  This is exciting because it means I can do other things I like, such as: climbing, running around the track at the U of T athletic centre, Christmas shopping, Clothing Show (this weekend! woowoo), Christmas partaying (this weekend! woowoo), laundray (poopoo)

5.  Okay I can't resist one climbing update.  Today I smeared when I did not think I could (grips too small) and I totally got past a tough spot.  It was great!

Goodnight lovelies.

d

xoxox  

Friday, December 07, 2007

a few minutes

of honesty.  so I just got back from the holiday partay and it was fun.  I am now officially drunk and I have found another party.  Having called a cab and waiting for an undetermined (ie cab company could not estimate) time I decided to fill the time with honesty.

Sadly I am not drunk enough for honesty.

Everything I could come up with that is rock bottom honest would be against my best interest to articulate.  I think that is why people lie and why people don't usually go about their day drunk.

I hear a car.  Please be my cabby.

So people got way more drunk than me tonight.  

I loved jon bon.  There were some cougars at the concert in front of H, S and I.  So funny.  Then I looked around and saw a sea of white women.  Most of them looked like hicks.  Oh well I let the thought go that I didn't belong and didn't want it want him as much as those cougars singin' along and  looking trashy.  Then I thought of work and how I did not want to miss the speeches.  And then I  thought of Harry because I always do and I left him a singing message.  Livin' on a Prayer.  Yes.  No more honesty here.

Then back to the party and all anyone asked was 'how was bon jovi???' and I got sick of it.  I was back and I wanted to know what I had missed.

Then I danced and got territorial even though I have no territory. 

Then I found this other party where I will likely get myself so drunk and tired that I do no productive work on my paper tomorrow.   I am freakin' freezing because my window is open because of fumes.  I loved bon jovi because I love crowds and being part of something so big where I am nothing.  so small and observing from a view so big. thinking about the humans and how cool they are.

goodnight.  i will call the cab and tell them lateness could breed too much honesty and we need to get rolling.  my room is freezing and fume-y and if I had I good bed I bet I would stay.

xox

d


Thursday, December 06, 2007

Up and coming

1. Bon Jovi - tomorrow night!
2. Northwater Holiday Partay at the Carlu - tomorrow night!
3. Afterpartay - Rob's place - tomorrow night!
3. Daniel and Terri's Hanukkah partay on Sunday. Maybe I'll meet a cute Jewish boy with lovely brown curls under his kippah.
4. Finishing my paper - this weekend! I freakin' hope I do finish it. Due on Thursday but enough is enough.

Today was my last class for Organizational Democracy. Loved it. Our group did really well on the presentation tonight too. Very satisfying to have payoff for marginally trying group work.

Wow. This masters thing is going to take some serious blood, sweat and tears. I am 1/10 of the way finished!

bye xoxo

d

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Got stuff lost stuff

Got:
1) New glasses - think purple and brown. plastic. larger. rounder. They look better than their description.
2) A mini haircut removing back (hockey hair) and shortening the bangs. Must look good for Jon Bon on Friday.

Lost:
1) My climbing harness
2) My chalk bag
3) My 30th birthday Tiffany's letter 'd' necklace. It was in the little pocket of my chalk bag where I kept it while climbing.

Hope is not lost but I already checked the climbing gym lost and found with no good news to report. Jamie says stealing a harness is bad karma. I am sorta dead inside right now so I don't care much either way.

Goin' climbing tonight so maybe I'll rent me a harness or steal Harry's since he copied me and bought the same one.

Cya.

D

Monday, December 03, 2007

Nowhere like nowhere

Working away on my paper at work I was thinking about why I don't want to go home. With two great roommates and a very nice pad in the Annex, what gives? I never really hang there and haven't even sat on our living room couch long enough to watch a movie. Ever I think. It is 9 pm and I'm seriously thinking of rushing home so I can rush out again to the gym and run around the track. And I'm freakin' tired too. Theories:

1) Comings and goings - with two roommates and their two boyfriends (only one each) there is always an arrival or departure. Our princess pad is fun but not what I would call tranquil.
2) Cold - I have a huge window and it gets pretty drafty in there. I have a little heater that makes it warm as toast but it takes time. Coupled with the hardwood floor, I just don't find it cozy in winter. More of a summer space.
3) Crappy bed - So back when I quit my job at GE I became a nomad and minimalist. I scavenged a futon from this jerk before he left the country. Then this other jerk screwed around it in with this other other jerk and I decided to replace the futon mattress part. At the time I thought it would serve as an infrequently used couch and it somehow turned out to be my permanent bed. It is thin, uncomfortable, studenty and carries negative connotations. Why don't I replace it? There exists a complicated list of reasons which shall not be the topic of this blog entry.
4) Impermanence - The Dalai Lama told a story of his monk friend getting depressed over his meditation on impermanence. It is a bit of a bummer. Being in a rented place with two roommates just screams temporary. I never fully nest there. Hence I never really work at creating the environment to come home to.
5) Pushing, pushing, pushing - I pressure myself a lot. Work, school, exercise - I have so many goals that have lost my nap-reflex and even had to completely abandon my 10 pm bedtime! I seriously do not quit and relaxing is tough when my mind is buzzing with things to do. I can't sit quiet with myself.

Ultimately there is a psychological safety, comfort and grounding that my home lacks for me. I now extend this statement to my life. Ultimately there is a psychological safety, comfort and grounding that is missing in my life. In this exact moment I am sitting in the dark at the top of a tower looking out on a muted city that appears never-ending. In this exact moment I feel utterly alone.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Warm inside on a snowy winter day

I feel like a scholar today. After over 20 hours of research and academic adventuring online this weekend I feel like I have grown my perspective. I am writing a research paper on the extent to which online collaboration tools (wikis, blogs, discussion groups etc.) facilitate organizational democracy and impact organizational power structures. These are the things I am learning about:

- Communities of Practice
- Computer Supported Collaboration
- Computer Supported Cooperative Work
- Discussion Groups
- Enterprise 2.0
- Knowledge Management
- Knowledge Workers
- KPIs (Key Performance Indicators)
- Masturbation (just checking if you're paying attention!)
- Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007
- Power
- Virtual Communities of Practice
- Web 2.0
- Weblogs
- Wikis
- Workflows

Anyway if you're wondering what I'm up to, this is life after October.

D

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Running to Run Faster

Today I figured out one way that actually works for uploading pictures using my new Mac. Things are different than I am used to. I randomly chose a picture and it turned out to be the Prosecco that kicked off my awesome visit to New York where I cheered on Gillian in the NYC Marathon at the beginning of November. I decided to leave the Processo because it makes me happy.

Just got back from the U of T Athletic Centre where I am exercising when not climbing. I like to run around their track and look silly. I found this fun assisted chin up machine there today which will help me get strong for climbing. I love to do chin-ups and pull-ups and even though not recommended, I still can't resist the ol' push-ups now and again! (Don't tell Audrey!)

Work is really busy but good. The honeymoon is still not over and it has been almost a year and a half. My longest relationship in a while!

Our princess pad on Markham is great. Avital, Andrea and I get along famously and we really enjoy the space. We'll need to plan a game night or partay for the new year.

School is busy - two assignments due - one on Dec 6th and one on Dec 13th. This is my first Masters course so I want to nail it. I haven't written an academic paper in 10 yrs or more so it is not coming so easy. I loved the course and teacher. Very stoked about the M.Ed. program on the whole.

Bracing myself for winter and refusing to be cold or timid with the outdoors this year. The post-Hallowe'en melancholy seems to be lifting but I feel like I'm entering a quiet period of focus. Study. Work. Run. Climb. Peck about it on the computer once in a while.

:)

D

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

".....Really?"

OK first of all this is all my fault for having really high expectations.

Dirty Dancing.

What can I even say about what I just saw? Did it have its moments? Yes. Overall did it get me there? Oh sweet Jesus - no.

Johnny Castle looked like a caricature of a prince from a Disney cartoon movie. Baby delivered every line in melodic perky-woman-in-a musical voice. She was comic relief and by the time their sex scene came along, people were laughing when they were not supposed to. She seemed so young and asexual that when Johnny decided to bed her, it just seemed so wrong, like in a pedophilia way.

Moving on, there were crazy elements added to the plot. One comment about Neil going freedom riding was blown into this huge social commentary on equal rights for black people. There was even a song about it and a HUGE image of Martin Luther King's face projected onto the backdrop! That was when Heather landed my favourite line: ".....Really?"

The dialogue they added was absolute nonsense. Random conversations, one involved multiple mentions of a cheese sandwich. Even during the finale, the I've-had-the-time-of-my-life bit, Baby and Johnny had this cheezy conversation about not lettin' the man beat you down. It was at that point that I delivered Heather's favourite line: "Shhhhh....don't talk."

Anyway, if you see it be prepared to laugh and cry and gnash your teeth... and not at the parts you expect! The set and effects were phenomenal and there were some amazing vocals. Many of the dance scenes were true to the last step which was fun to watch in person. The finale was buoyed by everyone's nostalgia and love for the original. Our cheers for 'nobody puts Baby in the corner' were heartfelt.

All and all, lots of fun for a Wednesday night! Makes you want to pop in Dirty, cozy up with some snacks and just let it all happen all over again!

Goodnight.

D

Dirty Dancing

I'm feeling better today, although my stinky mood persisted throughout the day yesterday at work. Not only was I unproductive but I think I made others so as well! Of course the thing that brightened me up was climbing.

I went with a new climbing friend Marwan. He is taking a Master of Pyschology at York. I thought maybe he wouldn't let me down until my brain had developed new neural pathways to solve whatever problem I was facing. Luckily not! He was awesome and we climbed from 7:30 pm to 11 pm. He is new but has incredible natural ability, strength and the perfect climbers body. New arch nemesis?

Tonight is my night to be nostalgic. I remember the first time I saw Dirty was at a sleepover in grade 7 or 8. We literally stayed up all night watching it over and over and over! Isn't that perfect?

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

November

Well I'm back from NYC and it turns out that the trip only prolonged but did not eliminate the crash and post-October depression that was predicted.

Things pretty much suck ass. If I am not working, studying or climbing then I am bodysnatched and you should call the police. If you are a man then you have likely behaved like a jackass recently or will do soon. I'll be either working, studying or climbing so I won't know or care. If you are a woman, then you will be happy to know that I am going to see Dirty Dancing tomorrow!

"Most of all I'm afraid of walking out of this room and never feeling the rest of my whole life...the way I feel when I'm with you."

(lusty pause and let it land time)

"Dance with me?"


Now I missed the garbage truck and I have two minutes to be dressed and out of the house and I'm in mismatched bra and underwear and I can't get the pictures to work on this freakin' Mac and I hate everyone.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Hallowe'en Debauchery 2007

Happy Hallowe'en All! (two of you!)

Hallowe'en this year took the cake. Harry and I hosted our 3rd annual partay on Friday, October 26th and it seriously rocked. Pure fun and a shooter luge!

Click here to view all the pics on Flickr.
The Maria Von Trapp costume was a success! I managed all 4 costume changes although #4, the 'naughty-nun cherry-popped honeymoon Maria' costume took on a form I did not anticipate. I ended up in fishnets, corset, black leather boots, black and white dress, white sash binding my hands behind my back... and the final touch, not a nun's habit but a cow bonnet! Nice improvisation!
Luckily I have a trip to NYC Nov 1st to 6th so I won't suffer the post party blahs like usual. The weather is supposed to be incredible!
xox

d

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Preparations underway...

So the Hallowe'en Partay committee (Harry, D, Andrea, Elizabeth, Mary, Mike, Fiona) hauled over all the pumpkins, supplies etc. and decorated up a storm for Friday's Hallowe'en party at Harry's place.

YAY! This is the most prepared we have ever been. Here are some of the highlights:

Decor and Party features:
- Huge shooter luge where shooters travel down a winding ice track into the mouths of partygoers
- 2 gigantic ceiling spiders with tiny spiders (bay-bays!!!) and webbing draped all over
- Scary hands coming out of the oven
- Sensor witches and skeletons and
- Over 12 pumpkins - some of them are (get this) ... white!!! Have you ever seen a white pumpkin before? Very cool but harder to carve.

D's Costume:
- So I've got almost everything for all 4 costumes in my homage to Julie Andrews as Maria Von Trapp. The postulant, the fralein, the bride, the popped cherry... all coming along very well. The most impressive is the postulant which is a very accurate costume. I found a sheet that looks exactly like the apron she wears and am paying $40 to have it sown into shape!
- I have carved 7 pumpkins as the 7 Von Trapp children. You will see pictures but I can't help telling you the funniest thing: Liesl's mouth is carved into a big 'O' like the o-face on the blow up doll that men like to penetrate. I'm going to put red lipstick on her too! :) Also I used curtains almost exactly like the movie to make 'playclothes' for the children.

Stay tuned...

scary d

Monday, October 22, 2007

Post Climbing Euphoria

I am in post climbing euphoria. Like a star I want to explode with how much I love climbing.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

My Hallowe'en Costume

I am so freakin' stoked for Hallowe'en this year. I have two parties: One that Harry and I are hosting on Friday night and one that my friend (and equivalent Hallowe'en enthusiast) Tasha is having on Saturday night.

Clearly I can't have the same costume for both parties so here's what I'm thinking:

1) Friday Partay: Maria Von Trapp (Julie Andrews inspired) from The Sound of Music reflected in four different costume changes:
i) Postulant
ii) Fraulein
iii) Bride of Captain Von Trapp
iv)Naughty nun honeymoon Maria (How do you a solve a problem like Maria? There are ways... ;) ... ) I think it would be funny if she was wearing her huge nighty as she did throughout the movie but I will likely take this one to the dark side a bit more... Still TBD if I will feel too guilty hooching up Maria.

PLUS seven Von Trapp child pumpkins! I even have the curtains to make their 'play clothes'!
These photos plus a great plot summary are found here if you need the Coles Notes. The image credits are here.

2) Saturday Partay:
Trinity from the Matrix. Hot! I did this one year but there were only a few people who got to enjoy it so I'm bringing sexy back.

Stay tuned for prep stories and pics...
xo
sparkly d

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Holiday in Bohemia Part Two

so where did we leave off?

Mic's bathroom was flooding, I joined the rest of the unwashed on the subway... and I was off to visit Gillian in her new Bachelorette Pad: Loft Edition (BP:LE) which she shares with three others.
It was only about 15 mins to get from Mic's to Gillian's. So easy. When I got off the subway I was in a very loud area with lots of trains, bridges and underpasses... I milled about wondering where to go for a while. Incidentally, I was also wondering if taking a pee on the street would be neighborhood appropriate because I had to go so bad. I called Garth to get help with directions and he directed me. The first thing I saw was an interesting concrete park. See the green painted grass?

It wasn't long before I found Gillian who, to my pleasure and envy, has attained hotbody through marathon training. She has a specific category of hotbody: hotlegs!!! I need to run a marathon to get these legs. Check them out.
Stepping into Gillian's loft was quite a contrast from Mic's tiny East Village apartment. It was a huge 3000 square foot loft! Gillian lives with a photographer, a painter and a musician (Anna, Leigha, Daniel) I spent about 30 minutes walking around in complete awe of their cool pad.
Luckily Gilly was up for an adventure. The Prosecco began to flow so the adventure started in her living room (well the couch part of the one gigantic room). Gillian's friend Chad was in town. He looks such a lot like Colin Firth that after about 1.5 glasses of Prosecco, I started calling him Colin. It was quite rude, yes, but don't you think he looks exactly like a younger Colin? He really does. (Chad + Prosecco = Colin)

After drinking and talking with Colin and Gilly's roomies we all went out to dinner at Superfine. I had a steak dinner and Colin and I were partners at pool. I think I was drunk at Superfine because I have vague memories of a small child buzzing around our pool game...but who knows? After the superfine food (it was really good!) we visited a studio for an exciting private viewing of Leigha's paintings. Leigha is the woman on the right in the picture.

The next leg of our adventure (with some prompting and pleading from a certain Canadian visitor who loves sing-alongs) was a sing-along at this park which has views of the Manhattan bridge and the Brooklyn bridge. Daniel brought his guitar and Gillian and I brought mugs of sparkling wine. (Adventure = drunk) Check out some pictures of the antics. (Antics = sitting on the grass)
After that we went out to a dance club called Rebar. As you can see I was dressed for success and spent the time that I was not dancing (ie the whole time) chatting with a cute bartender. For me, the highlight of this leg of the adventure was being told by a young black man with dreads that I looked like Ellen DeGeneres. Let's face it. He was really, really right. I still felt like I needed a comeback so I said 'yah well you look like Milli Vanilli.' I (like Ellen DeGeneres) have been blessed with the quickwit and usually find myself making a joke or comeback before I even consciously think the thought of it. Well the timing was excellent but it is not until this very moment that I realize how much he DID look like Milli Vanilli (either guy really because of the hair and skin tone). Good one!

We closed the place, went for snacks at Peas and Pickles, witnessed a store clerk hit a complaining patron in the mouth and headed home to the BP:LE.
The next afternoon I was back in Toronto with my head just full of ideas about film and the arts and community development. I was really inspired by the holiday. (Inspired = want to quit my job) Anyway, that was holiday in Bohemia. Thanks to all who made it possible.

My next adventure in NYC is Nov 1-6th when I will cheer Gillian on at the NYC Marathon and enjoy New York with Shirley, my friend and Gillian and Garth's mum.
Things I'm looking forward to in this next visit:

1) Seeing Gillian's hotbody legs in action at the marathon and cheering people on. I really love marathons. The energy is incredible.

2) Bonding with Shirley. Shirley was the 'designated mom' who dropped off and picked up Garth and I at Oktoberfest. The pickup was hilar because everyone was drunk outside Concordia club and they all started cheering 'Mom!!!' and Shirley got out of her red convertible so someone could take a picture. The police told her to move along. THEN didn't we take the cake?! Shirley, Garth and I went through the Taco Bell drive through!
3) Seeing Odd Todd in Brooklyn. I've tried twice already and he has blown me off but I can't give up because it is on my list to find him and his dog Roscoe.
4) Going to a museum with Chetan (previous Northwater coworker) - either the Museum of Natural History or the Guggenheim. TBD.
5) Seeing Mic again. We are doing so well with the visits. She is a consultant so she can fly to Toronto easily for free. We've got a plan for that in the hopper too. I'm hoping we can have a painting party with Anthony too. This was something we ran out of time for last visit...
Stay tuned for an update after my next trip to NYC... In the meantime, it's time for Hallowe'en!
xo

d

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Immortality

So everybody likes a good partay game, non? Well I have the stuff. The crack cocaine of partay games. I discovered Mafia in San Francisco when I worked for GE several years ago. My crowd got addicted to the point that we would reserve a conference room at 4 pm and find ourselves still there hours after work!

Once you play it, it kinda makes you crazy. I remember I was once forcibly shoved against a piece of cubicle by my friend and mafia nemesis, Laurie. She now denies the ultraviolence. She was mad because she had to choose to believe me or some other sucka. She chose me and of course I was a member of the pirate mafia (I just threw in pirate because I'm into the piratia lately!) I took over the town and won the game!!! (Glory days alert)

Anyway, check out what I got from a past colleague in Oakville (thanks Facebook!):

Hi Denise...you'll be happy to know that your legacy at GE lives on. On our
last offsite management meeting, all we did was play Mafia. There was 9 of
us on
the trip, we were in Montreal, the city was at our disposal and we
just looked
for a watering hole that didn't mind the noise and would let us
play until the
wee hours. We're addicted!!

I worked as a Finance manager with these cats three years ago! This...this is the type of lasting change I facilitate in my corporate career. Please remind me when I get down about not making enough of an impact, k?
Have a great day everyone!
xo

d

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Holiday in Bohemia

To celebrate Thanksgiving, I headed to New York City... centre of the universe! The theme of the weekend: Creativity! Photography, film, poetry, music, painting, and of course, Fluevog.
My trip allowed visits to two friends: Mic in the East Village and Gillian in Brooklyn (formerly Park Slope, recently relocated to DUMBO) I was there October 5th - 8th but the weather was what you'd expect on the hottest weekend of August. Mic still managed to shop like a trooper but I was put off buying sweaters!

The weekend was so much fun, I must give the play-by-play!

Friday I flew in and took a cab to Mic's place in the East Village. I buzzed and upon entry began to carry my bags up the stairs to the fourth floor. Immediately, I heard a huge racket of running and stomping, stomping and running. I thought it must be kids playing upstairs. Still, a small part of my brain played out an 'imagine if' (does anyone have a brain that generates scenarios ranging from marginally to completely unlikely several hundred times per day?) and I imagined: "What if that stampede is actually Mic running down cuz she's so excited to see me?!?" Well believe it or not... (and this never happens with imagine ifs)... it was! In seconds Mic and her roommate Anthony were there whisking my bags away from me and carrying them up, up, up. I can't say why this sticks out so much but I guess I just felt welcomed. This hospitality was to set the tone for my whole visit.

Mic and I has some Prosecco (drink of the weekend) and I got meet Anthony and his brother Paul. Now these were two bantertastic high brows brothers of the highest order of funny and I was immediately relishing the richness and colour of the conversation. Mic and I decided to mission out in the East Village. Since the theme was Bohemia, we started out at the Bowery Poetry Club. Since it was Friday night, there was no poetry, only a dj spinning some sounds with video in the background. Very cool but we could not hear our own conversation very well so we moved on. Next we tried to find the Korova Milk Bar, inspired by A Clockwork Orange. Sadly, it had been relocated to White Plains, NY! Dammit! I had my heart set on a little of the ol' in-out in-out along with some ultraviolence! Instead, we went to KGB Bar, which was a lot of fun. Still, the conversation in Mic's own apartment clearly stole the thunder...

Saturday morning, Mic and I got up and went shopping in SoHo. I bought two new pairs of Fluevogs, in the spirit of artistic expression. Seriously, these things make me happy, happy, happy. Mic is always a healthy shopper. She bought a dress, a sweater, some lingerie, a green purse, some cards... I am apparently a good catalyst for her in shopping situations!


At 3 pm we headed back to the apartment to help out Anthony, and his business partner Martha with a segment for their way cool project: The Greatest Living Writers Project. They film poets performing their works and then provide the video to schools so students get exposure to a broad range of spoken word. The poet they filmed was Nikki Batin. The filming was done on the rooftop of Mic and Anthony's building and I even got to help with lighting and one of the cameras. Nikki's work was amazing. It really resonated with me (many of us I suspect) as one of her themes is body image. After the filming, we ate and drank with Nikki and her partner Brooks in the surreal pink light of sunset. As far as moments of appreciation, this was way up there. I felt happy, thankful, and inspired.

Back in the apartment, after the guests had left, Mic, Anthony and I had a groove session including a keyboard (Mic and D), a guitar (Anthony) and a harmonica (Anthony again). That Anthony... so full of tricks! I became addicted to the keyboard and really started to find my groove. Next time I will heighten and explore ;) Mic and I went out to a bar in the West Village called the Ear Inn and met up with some of her friends from North Dakota.

Sunday morning (hungover, second night in a row!) Mic and I headed out to brunch (NoLita Cafe? To be confirmed) and by 'brunch' I mean a huge burger, fries, 3 coffees and 2 sangrias! Mic and I were giggly since we had not slept much and were weak. Then we walked around and did some window shopping but our anticipation of a shower got us back to the apartment quickly. Sadly, no shower was forthcoming. While we were out, a toilet above had continuously overflowed and was leaking water all over Mic's bathroom including the window sill, toilet and part of the shower. Not only were we not taking a shower, we couldn't even pee!

This was when one of my favourite Mic traits emerged... (and there are many!) Mic just took the whole leak thing in stride. She called Anthony, called the super and then... just chilled. I honestly don't remember her dropping an f-bomb or anything! She is so freakin' cool like that.

Unshowered, full-bladder be damned, I was packed and on my way to visit Gilly in Brooklyn...

Stay tuned for holiday in bohemia part two...

xox d

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

suddenly she got busy

OK guppies. You are circling hungry and won't take your freaky unclosable fisheye off me so here here, a pinch of food.

Suddenly she got busy. You'll have to fill in the details using your imagination.

YAY - Pie fight with crazy artists... I am finally bohemian.

BOO - Egocide (termed by Mike) committed while climbing with Darren-Bodhi and some other more experienced climbers. Horrible horrible display of ineptitude followed by two day pity party. Theme: It isn't easy being athletically pathetic.

YAY - Attended first class for first course for M.Ed. "Organizational Democracy" (Does this make you laugh? For me sometimes yes.) Course and prof seem very interesting. Classmates? Sketchy. I don't trust them. All facial ticks and goiters and such. Just kidding.

YAY - Got a trainer named Dan. (Dan's kinda pudgy which is not jiving with my GI Jane bit. Lord love that Master Chief.) But Dan comes highly recommended by Neil, the most fit guy at Northwater. We've met twice and set some goals. I'll share them another day - there are some funny ones. Dan will come climbing on Tuesday the 9th and make me a monkey with just the right program. So although I will be training to complete a one-armed push-up, I will more importantly be training to climb better. And get hotbody.

BOO!!!! - Hallowe'en approaching. Very excited! Harry and I on Friday the 26th and a rager on Brunswick St. hosted by Tasha on Saturday. She has already given out blood spattered invitations with a Thriller theme.

YAY - Andrea moved in on the weekend! She is the newest and Slovakest princess in the princess pad. If you haven't been by, we are three, living on Markham St. in the Annex: Andrea, Avital, and me, D. Andrea is my friend from Northwater and Avital is my friend from Wellness School. (It wasn't really called that but it makes it funnier, no?)

YAY - Melanie served up a delicious annual dinner (I think fifth annual) and Heather, Shawna, Mel and I had a wonderful, giggly evening.

YAY - Clothing Show! Got some great stuff as always.

YAY - Avital participated in some edgy performance art at Nuit Blanche, the second annual all night art bonanza in Toronto. Heather, Shawna, Melanie and I watched her show but in spite of shots of Rockstar we couldn't stay up all night!

OK this is all I have time for guppies. Please point your freaky fisheye elsewhere!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

The best day ever

What a great day! Sure, Saturdays are almost always good but today, TODAY was outstanding:

7:30 am - Anne arrives and helps me to create and even start implementing my financial plan. I have been procrastinating on this for years! Finally, I'm almost sorted thanks to Anne's most excellent help.

9:30 am - We take a break to do brunch at Grapefruit Moon. I tried a new dish - Huevos Rancheros...yum! My friend Julia was working - another perk.

11 am - Back to the plan says Anne. I received my action items and after Anne left, I headed to the CIBC to sort out more bleh banking stuff on my quest to have my investments in order.

Insert enjoyable miscellany - goofing off on computer, chatting with Avital (I got a sneak peak at the act she is preparing for Nuit Blanche), laundry and bed-making, such et such.

3:30 pm - Meet Garth at the Wheat Sheaf for a nice afternoon beverage.

4 pm - Climbing with Tasha. OK this is actually a post about a freakin' awesome climbing day disguised as a post about lots of things. So today I redid the bitchy purple 5.7 to see if was easier. It was actually still hard, but I made it. Tasha did too - and that was her big goal for today. Yay Tasha! Then there was a yellow 5.9 just beside it with very small grips. I decided to try it out, never thinking it was in the realm of the doable for today, and woo hoo I made to the top! This is not to say I was very graceful... but damn I made it! (Climbing difficulty ranges from 5.4 to 5.12 at my gym so 5.9 is getting there) Incidentally, both the 5.7 and the 5.9 I did today were climbs that Harry could not finish last week. I know it won't last long since Harry is just starting out, but I'm still savouring it for a moment right now! FYI I have wounded a muscle in my ass but I'm sure I will survive!

7 pm - Meet Daniel and Terri to go to Jewish New Year dinner at Daniel's parents', Alan and Jinks. I did not fast today (since I was climbing) but I think I will next year. I want to experience that moment of food and drink after the fast. I met even more of Daniel's family and enjoyed a delicious 'fast break' after sun down. (sidenote: Is this where the word 'breakfast' comes from? You are techinically breaking a fast from the night I suppose.) There were unending sweet and savoury dishes including babka - my favourite dessert of the evening, and herring in sour cream which I really enjoyed. I also tried fresh figs for the first time and loved them. Daniel's family and family friends were all so friendly and interesting, and what a small world - a woman from my office arrived for the celebration! Shana Tova!

12 pm - Arrive home and finish this very blog update. I also checked Facebook and realized I've been invited to a Pie Throwing party tomorrow at 5 pm! Crazy! How can I resist?

12:15 pm - Fall asleep while trying to finish a chapter of 'The Glass Castle' by Jeannette Walls.

Goodnight. If my dreams are good I will blog them tomorrow. ;) If you frowned upon my flip-flop between present and past tense, just know it was intentional and likely won't be repeated.

Friday, September 21, 2007

The most wonderful time of the year

I am seriously getting a racing heart from excitement over the coming festivities. Here are some of the pics that got me going. This was the first annual Hallowe'en partay Harry and I co-hosted back in 2005. If you:
  • Reside in another city, especially a far one

  • Are off traveling to gain worldly experiences

  • Are antisocial

  • Don't like either me or Harry

  • Have done something to make either me or Harry not like you

Then you will be sorely missing out! Last year we had a fire thrower performer guy and this year it gets even better. Some of our decor from last year was so cool that Harry left it up all year! Our partay is Friday, October 26th for all who can attend...

Sidenote: The name of the sheep in Harry's costume was Princess. She took a lot of abuse that night. In fact let's just say she did not make to Hallowe'en 2006. We imagined taking her back to the store and trying to return her by saying "You sold us a bleeder!"









Thursday, September 20, 2007

Good Climbs

OK so I'm really sorry but all I want to say anything about is climbing! I choose not to order my thoughts and I choose to use bullet points.

  • I climbed yesterday with Harry and Darren (Bodhi) too. Followed up today with Tasha. Twice in a row although very taxing has been VERY fruitful in terms of improvements.
  • Arggh. Too much to say. Too tired to type.
  • Major breakthroughs: I'm climbing 5.7s now and can make it up the 60 foot climbs (These are pretty freakin' long climbs. Sweaty.) I made it up the first one yesterday with Harry - yay!
  • There's this one purple bitch of a climb with really bitchy little grips. Tasha and I feel that it is the hardest 5.7. Yesterday in front of Darren I toiled pathetically. It was poor. I trash talked myself a lot: Denise get your freakin' right leg up and STAND! You are in front of Darren and Harry!! Fucking do it. DO IT now. STAND! But I couldn't do it yesterday. Today Tasha tried it and she could not do it yet. THEN! Then I tried it again tonight and YAAAAYYY... I did it! I stood. Quite easily too. And I felt it in my ass and legs. (This is a good sign.)
  • After the above I did a 60 foot 5.7 - faster than ever with far less resting/thinking. (I'm a big rester/thinker usually.)
  • Darren is the perfect Bodhi. I love his climbing. He has such grace and flow. You have to see Darren climb. :)
  • Every time I go I make new friends. They are really nice people, these climber people. Soon I'll have a posse to climb with every night if I wish. And I could see it going that way. Addiction alert. Today I was fantasizing about not having a job and how much fun it would be to climb every day.
  • I'm so getting hot body. Look out.
  • The guys who work there are kinda too cool, y'know? But tonight Daniel (my original instructor) was super nice to me. He said anytime I come he will belay me. Can you believe it? Even Jamie aka 'king of the assholes' is nicer. I think since I brought Harry. He was impressed with that Harry. Hmmmph.
  • This is the first time I've been into something physical. I always had to drag myself to the gym. With climbing I think about it and get excited!!
  • I'm changing!!!

xo

d

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Dirty Pirate Talk...

So today is officially Talk Like A Pirate Day! Since it is after hours, I thought this would be a good time to school you on some little known pirate terms that I found on the ol' urban dictionary...

Pirate Fuck or similarly Pirate Eye
Skullfuck

LOL!!!!

OK I'm too tired to go to sleep right now and posting this sort of crap seems like a great idea. I laughed quite hard at the example sentence for 'Skullfuck'.

I'm really into pirates lately. Pirates and stars!!!

D

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Tasha Rocks

I went climbing with my new friend Tasha yesterday. She freakin' rocks as a climbing partner. I realized that for me at least, the belayer affects the climber's climb. She was helpful, motivating, funny... and I knew that whenever I made a monkey move she was watching so she would immediately tighten me up. (I like a tight belay.) Then the ride down was slow and smooth. I could tell that she was treating my life as a precious commodity.

Mary (first ever climbing buddy) is a great like this too. Did you know she would get a sore hand from holding on so tightly to the lifeline? She has been on vacation and sick so we haven't climbed in a few weeks. She will be astounded with my progress for real.

Now I've gotten to the top of several 5.7s and have gained so much confidence and agility. My climbing speed is probably the most noteworthy improvement - I used to deliberate ad nauseum and could not prompt myself forward if I didn't know what I was getting into. ie I was afraid to reach for something unknown, afraid to stand in a space where both hands and both feet were not securely gripping or planted. Now I just freakin' stand up and if it turns out there is nothing good to grab, I sit back down... but in a higher space.

I'm sure there are lessons for life here but I'm opting for brunch with Daniel.

D

PS Please stop what you are doing and come climbing with me. I am addicted and need to share my addiction with YOU.

TIFF comes to a close

TIFF is finished for another year. I'm really happy with this year's experience and Heather is largely to thank. She has exceptional RAM and I joked recently: Others have IMDB, I have Heather! We were both happy with the selection of movies: The only one we weren't too jazzed about was The Stone Angel.

Below is my rack-and-stack: The first two were clear favourites. The seventh was the clear loser. All the others were really enjoyable and it was hard to rack-and-stack them. How do you compare a foreign hermaphrodite movie with an exciting cars-exploding law firm drama? I would recommend that you watch 1 through 7 when you get the chance.

For specific plot summaries, see my links here. Below are just thoughts and ramblings...

1. Rendition - Great film that was hard to watch (as it should be given the subject matter). This gets number 1 because it will raise social consciousness and may make a difference to something important. It is this potential that makes film truly exciting for me.

2. Juno - So freakin' clever. The writing was amazing and the laughs felt as natural as breathing while watching this movie. Great music too. See this!!! I will say that the writing was a bit Dawson's Creek. You know, where the characters, although teenagers or nail technicians, are somehow more clever and emotionally intelligent than you or anyone you know... Well I loved Dawson's Creek. Again - see this!!

3. The Jane Austen Book Club - Girl movie of the year! This film really hits the spot emotionally. Whoever wrote it gets it when it comes to what motivates people and how real life happens. Given the plot, it could have been so horribly bad, but the writing, acting and directing made it work. I empathized with characters - wounder and woundee alike!

4. Breakfast with Scot - Pretty much ties with number 3. Great premise and characters. Funny and touching. Breaks downs barriers on several different fronts.

5. XXY - Foreign hermaphrodite movie. The heroine was powerful - owning the seaside in her rubber boots. In some scenes, the dialogue left us missing something. Plot or character development issues. Ie if someone is depicted as an asshole but you have never seem him do anything asshole-like, and then later he does something REALLY assholey... the audience can get confused.

6. Michael Clayton - George Clooney clooning. He is the hero. He avoids the car bombs. He uncovers the stuff the bad guys are covering. The main female character's humanity (weakness, insecurity, inexperience) is fully revealed while the hero, although facing several personal challenges cloons on behind an emotional veil. Still very good. I love when people take a stand. The audience loved this too - we all cheered at certain times. Coolio when a film gets you fired up.

7. Then She Found Me - Colin Firth was supercute and the years have not been kind to Helen Hunt. (So damn unfair!) Again, this movie was reality based which I loved. Whoever wrote it understood the imperfection of the humans. Several plot turns had the audience shocked and dismayed while I thought to myself - Are you all REALLY shocked? This is how life is when you're not in a movie. Not for the faint of heart. I ranked it low and I don't know why. It was a tempo issue. Like I couldn't pick up the beat or something. In this case the plot and writing were great so I blame the directing ...

8. The Stone Angel - Bleh. Two people who saw this said how the main character is not very likeable. Good acting but with a huge tempo issue. It just didn't pull me in on any front. Flat as the Canadian prairies of Margaret Laurence's storytelling.

So there you have it. This September has been such a sparkler for me. I know September is built to be amazing but this year has been over the top. October promises to be equally exciting! Stay tuned.

Friday, September 14, 2007

@work

I work at Northwater - a privately owned Canadian investment management firm of about 100 people. We are located on the top (47th Floor) of the Bay-Wellington tower of Brookfield Place (formerly BCE Place).

It gets quiet up here at 8:59 pm on a Friday night. In fact, with the exception of the cleaner who just mopped in, I'm all alone. There is a stunning 360 degree view of Toronto and the lake. I know Toronto is a-buzz but from here it seems peaceful and still. Tonight I got into the zone with something I'm working on - don't you love that feeling? Actual unfettered (well minimally fettered I suppose) productivity.

Thoughts:
  • This week someone said 'Thanks you really lifted me up!' and someone else said 'Thanks for the feedback! You've made my day!'. I've decided that given the whole monkeybrain, meat suit random arbitrarity (arbitrocity?) of it all, being a good person day to day and making the whole mill-about better for everybody milling about in your space is a big deal. What else is there at the end of the day? (Some love that expression, some hate it, I know)
  • It got dark really early and it was a bit rainy too. Garth and I were saying how it feels like summer has left us. Yes, September and October are my favourites with so much excitement, but there is some sadness that tags along. I'm feeling it now. I am going to some artist party with Andrea, her sister and friends... but I really feel like being cozy and staying in. Must not! Must adventure like crazy art pirate...
  • Jenny's baby. It's a boy! She told me this week that the ultrasound person said 'Your son is holding his penis right now.' Nice. Isn't it funny that while still in the mom's belly, the tiny human is fiddling with THAT part of the meat suit? It's fun! If I had one I'd be fiddling with it right now too.
  • I had my orientation at OISE this week. Right. Well I'm going to suspend judgement and let it unfold. I will say that the program chair, Marilyn Laiken seems amazing. Her kindness, warmth, wisdom and general wonderful energy are encouraging and inspiring.
  • Went climbing with Neil and his friend from university. She can already do a one-armed push-up (actually four with each arm!)!!! Sidebar: I made a bet that I will be able to do this by Aug 1st 2008. If I do this AND shave my head like GI Jane, I will receive quite a bit of cash from coworkers. If you would like to witness this event, I'll forward you the sign-up sheet. ;) (If you're wondering - no, I'm not kidding! There is a signup sheet.)

Well now it is 9:30 pm and I ate bran buds for dinner while blogging. Big weekend coming up... Last film of the festival, climbing, brunch, shopping engagement... hope you have a good one too!

D

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Everybody wants something...

...they'll never give up.
Everybody wants something, they'll take your money and never give up.
Everybody face up to the facts as they are,
Dedication is hard but, you'll be somebody and you will go far.
Everybody wants something, they'll never give up.
Everybody wants something, they'll take your money and never give up.

- The Zit Remedy

Well it is TIFF time in Toronto and I'm lovin' it up. Yesterday Elizabeth and I scouted the red carpet at Queen and John for a short time to get in the spirit. My celebrity money shot? A dose of nostalgia... check out the then and now... (then above, now below) I don't know his name on the show or in real life but even a quick google would cost seconds of my life I'll never get back.












Today Heather, Prachi and I saw Rendition as planned. This film was starful: Reese Witherspoon, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Meryl Streep did a fine job. The director, Gavin Hood, was not there for Q&A because his pregnant wife (twins) went into labour. (Well actually she is American so maybe she went into 'labor'.) This was a surprise since she is not due until the end of September. He said to tell us the only thing that would keep him from the 'birth' of this film was the birth of his children.

As we left the theatre and began to cross the street, a car slowed. We thought these were visitors asking for directions. Instead a woman said 'We have tickets to the next film and can't go... Can you use them?' Of course we can and thanks again universe.


The film was Michael Clayton with George Clooney. Now I am missing some chemical in my female monkeybrain because for some reason I don't like George Clooney. Like at all. Oh well. The movie was very good - although not nearly as high on our list as Rendition. This movie seemed more of a pleaser for guys. Such a hero that Michael Clayton was - and don't get me started on the weakness of the female characters. Heather and I both really enjoyed the performance of Tom Wilkinson. Check him out as Arthur.

When the film ended I again tried to head home and was again diverted. This time there was some excitement over a red carpet. The next film, Battle in Seattle, was coming up and several stars were arriving. I decided to snap some pics. It was pretty calm except for when Charlize Theron was walking the carpet. We're talking about grown men everywhere running, snapping, pleading: 'Charlize...CHARLIZE...Can I have your autograph???!!!' I nearly got scared for my John Fluevogs for a moment! As you'll see below, I snapped Charlize, her boyfriend and the director of the film, Stuart Townsend, Woody Harrelson, and Andre Benjamin. Well stay tuned for more fun... Tomorrow has two more films and who knows what adventures.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

The Meaning of Life

This is the first of many in my new monkeybrain series. Philosophers enjoy. This is fucked up.

So at the heart of it all is energy. We've all got a piece of that action. Then we've got this monkeybrain which we don't fully know how to operate. We are further limited in our (in)ability to perceive dimensions. We get three of them plus time (unless there are any ants or bees reading my blog). Time is a partial. Meaning we can see it when we're in it and after it has passed but not when it's still ahead of us.

Then there is the meat suit. We carry the energy and the monkeybrain around in the meat suit.

We all (billions of us!) live on a big round rock with a bunch of other creatures that have energy, monkeybrains and meat suits. Some of them we eat. Yum.

We know about some other stuff way out there... stars, planets, our universe (expanding at an increasing rate!!!), other universes... stars, matter, anti-matter, dark matter... (This can overload the monkeybrain so be careful here.)

Each night we sleep to build and rebuild the meat suit and the monkeybrain gets all charged up with energy so we dream. Then we wake up and do the mill-about:
  • The monkey brain perceives what's what and gives/receives signals to/from environment and the meat suit. It's all about the chemicals. Happy, sad, excited, curious, impatient, driven, lonely... all chemicals in the monkeybrain. We seek out situations that give us good chemicals and avoid situations that give us bad chemicals.
  • We primp, preen, stuff and fluff the meat suit and buy things to cover it and decorate it. Cute shoes. I love what you've done with your hair!
  • Most of us are professionally employed, so we generally sit around and use the monkeybrain for stuff of little to moderate consequence: The left brain sequences and the right brain looks at the big picture and puts it together.
  • We are designed to enjoy (ie gooooood chemicals in the monkeybrain) joining certain parts of our meat suit with certain parts of other meat suits. We think an awful lot about rubbing up parts. Can't help it! They fit so perfectly and this is, of course, how we keep the whole game going.
  • We like to spend time with humans who give us good chemicals. This usually means that they have a meat suit we like or that their monkeybrain works a lot like ours. This is comforting.
  • When we really like another human we enter an agreement. It says: I really like your mb and ms and energy. I promise to help you feed your ms, and to give you good chemicals in your mb. I also promise to never rub my ms up against anyones except yours!
  • All the rubbing creates new humans and we are designed to like them even though they look and act like science experiments gone bad and are a ton of work to grow to full size. It's worth it! They are smooth and new and we like it. Just about as much as we dislike wrinkled and old.
  • We all play along and keep the whole game going... but somehow those damn chemicals are never quite right. We just keep trying for the good ones! Even people with beautiful meat suits who can rub them against anyone they want can't get that monkeybrain any peace. (ie Owen Wilson)... We make and break agreements with other humans. We travel all around in our meat suits. Some of us even try to get at the energy part. What is it???

The biggest joke is that there isn't a human among us who knows wtf we are supposed to be doing here!!! We feed the meat suit, do the rub, make more of us, use the monkeybrain (hoping yours doesn't go on the fritz like mine did!) and seek out the good chemicals. We aren't sure what exactly is left when you strip away the chemicals, the monkeybrain and the meat suit.

Yet somehow deep down we feel the energy. We know we are connected to every other bit of energy and to something big. We just freakin' know it.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Colin Firth I Am Ready!

Well this year I am doing it right. Thanks to my friend Heather's coaching, I have managed to stay on top of all the deadlines, lotteries, queues, firstborn signaways etc. and now have tickets to seven films in TIFF. Here's where I'll be (when I'm not stalking Colin Firth):

Rendition
Sat 8-Sep

XXY
Sun 9-Sep

Breakfast with Scot
Sun 9-Sep

The Jane Austen Book Club
Mon 10-Sep

Juno
Mon 10-Sep

The Stone Angel
Wed 12-Sep

Then She Found Me
Sat 15-Sep

I will add my comments / reviews after the fact. Bye!

D

PS These fims seem very vanilla when I look at them now. I blame Heather as she does not like to see foreign films on account of the subtitles. And because she is the only other person to blame besides myself.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Happy New Year

OK so I am finally removing 387 pictures from my digital camera. Foldering, naming, remembering, forgetting, rotating, cringing, deleting, such-and-suching. This is all part of the D New Year. For me, September and October are the months of renewal and starting fresh. I love the rustling, the crispness, back-to-school, Hallowe'en, Oktoberfest and of course Thanksgiving (such a great holiday). So, I'm organizing and getting stoked for the year to come by for starters, organizing photos! Being as self-obsessed and captivated with my own countenance as the next guy, I have been known to take some pictures of myself. Thought I would share. Now if you are tempted to comment that you do NOT do this or you HATE pictures of yourself, then just stop and let me believe it is normal:

This was taken at MJ's wedding in June 2007. I really like it. The lighting was good and the curtain was wispy:


This one is disturbing yet artsy. Just taken on Saturday morning (September 1st, 2007) to capture the birth of September, one of my favourite months. September 1st evening turned out quite strange and unsettling so maybe this photo was foreshadowing:


Finally, the ethereal. (Also part of the September 1st look-ahead...) Looking forward to a sparkling, learning, doing, journey of a year:


I have some longer blogs-in-process (including the wedding blog - hold your horses Jennifer! It's coming...). This is just eye candy...of me... for me.

A few years back I read an article about a study of apes who, like crazy humans, enjoy looking at pictures of each other. In fact, they were willing to trade in bananas for pictures of the most popular apes in the group. They didn't want to view photos of the less popular apes as much. I can't find the article now so you'll have to trust me.

Which photo (if any) would you trade tasty bananas for?

Bye!

D
Added 9/16: Needing to add a little note to myself about how freakin' exciting and amazing Sept 1st turned out to be. What an amazing gift - to be alive and groovin' out in this exact moment and space in time. YAY!!! A champagne supernova all for me :)

Geared Up

On Friday (August 31st) I purchased my shoes and harness for climbing. The shoes, like most things in life, represent a balance. In this case the tension lies between choosing a size that is marginally comfortable and buying them as teeny tiny small as possible so you can create a solid platform for standing on beer bottle caps and such and such. (Experienced climbers brag like this: "I wear a size 13 and my climbing shoes are a 9!" This is too much pain and disfigurement for me.) I initially bought my shoes too large (common error - been buying shoes for walking all my life...) and then immediately course corrected, returned them and bought the right size.

The hard cores who work there approved and the woman even said they were cute. YES!!! Cute climbing shoes! Take a look at my fancay new purchases:




I went to the gym to try them out but Garth would not attend and Darren/Bodhi was not there either so I was out of luck.... or was I? I was so stoked to try my stuff that after watching amazing sprite climbers for a while I found these newerbie (meaning even more newbie than me!) women who only had three in their partay and literally forced one of them to be my climbing partner. She was spent and was thus content (accidently typed 'cuntent' first. lol.) to belay me. YES! I made some more breakthroughs, made a butt of myself in various ways I shall not describe and then finally met Garth at Riff-Raff's.

Good freakin' times.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

I Rock (Climber)

Yesterday Garth and I went climbing together. It was Garth's first time and he liked it! I had another milestone night. Yaayyy! I climbed to the top of the 5.6 (same one as last time) but this time I didn't use any pirate ploys to get to the top. I only used actual grips (AND only the ones set for my course) - no cheating!!!

Darren (Bodhi emerging?) was there and he helped Garth and I all night. He is such a sprite. Love that guy. Garth and I decided we achieved much more with him around because we would too easily give up in front of each other, but in front of Bodhi there is some temptation to be like 'Yes I AM cool enough to be in your bad ass bank robbin' surfer posse.' Yup.

So I

  • Made it to the top without cheating
  • Rallied and made it to the top of ANOTHER easier climb after that - I was freakin' exhausted!
  • Worked on looking cool (ie better climbing form/techniques) after Darren did an impression of what I look like! This means straighter arms, hangin' low, hip shiftin and trusting my legs. (Hard to trust those two - especially the sketchy left one!)
  • Explored balance - there is some kind of zen karate kid thing you actually start to do where you stick one leg out where there is no hold to balance yourself.
  • Switched footing.
  • Let myself reach and fall off a few times (a BIG deal for me).
  • Did a pull-up and a chin-up where Darren did most of the work spotting me
  • Did ...of course... push-ups. Did such a good job on women's that he thought I could for sure do a man's. Not last night.
  • Exerted myself further than ever before ESPECIALLY in front of another human. This is really hard for me.

So stay tuned for my blog about SF and the wedding. I'm going to upload photos and write my entry on the weekend.

If you aren't interested in my climbing progress then you can avoid blog entries with this label. There will be a lot of them. Climbing is a lot more fun than dating. AND there are more hot, shirtless men.

xo

D

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Just like in Point Break

Mary and I went climbing at Rock Oasis again last night and it was the best yet. I actually made it to the top of higher, more difficult (for me) climb and it rocked.

Pirate sidebar: I'm at the point where I pretty much do whatever I have to do (graceless, desperate, unscrupulous) to get to the top. If it means using a grip from the climb beside me or holding onto these rope holder thingys for lead climbing - I'll do it. I asked Daniel (guy who works there) if it is unsafe or a problem and he said, not really, but it's 'cheating'. I said (so I says to him...) 'listen Daniel, it's a bit of a pirate's game for me at this point!!!' I included this conversation because I think pirate code applied to any situation is funny. I love pirates lately.


After we had our fill, we walked toward the back of the gym and I saw this woman doing chin ups! (A guy was steadying her legs but it still counts) Omigosh I was so impressed that I had to high five her after (seriously I did high five her). Then Mary and I got talking with her (Amy) and her friends (Darren and "Hoops"). They were so nice and helpful. AND turns out she too used to be over 200 lbs too! Can you believe it? What a perfect mentor. She is cut. She is hot. She is surrounded three nights a week in hot shirtless men. By the end of it, Darren said, well come climb with us anytime. We're here Monday, Wednesday, Friday.

...

This reminds me of Point Break when Keanu detective guy is trying to infiltrate the coolio surfer group. At first he toils and gets roughed up by mean people and finally the leader (aka Bodhi sexy Patrick Swayze) takes him under his wing. Yay he is happy. Then he becomes all bad ass surfer too and shags that hot woman. Anyway I'm having trouble fully assigning roles at this point. Is Darren the leader or Hoops? Or Amy?? Will I shag one of this posse? This was not something I anticipated as a byproduct of climbing.

Lettin' it unfold... :)

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I do this every day!

So every morning I wake up before my alarm. Like way before. I freakin' love waking up early. Then I get all into whatever I'm up to and the time flies flies flies by...

6:48 am
7:04 am
7:25 am my alarm actually goes off at this point
7:41 am
7:55 am k gotta stop typing/reading/trying on outfits/whatever now
8:01 am k pull away!!! PULL AWAY...
8:09 am now uggghhh rush rush rush shower run dress mismatched ahhhh change no time subway

arrive 9:09 am late by a hair

I always push it just a little too far, y'know?

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Wholeness

I had a great evening tonight - got my TCard (U of T student card) yay September, then did a wellness check-in at Daniel's place and finally had dinner at Fresh with Lisa and some of her pals (love them). The nugget of wisdom from the wellness check-in today came originally from Daniel's mom:
"Focus on your wholeness, as well as your holiness."

Now this may at first scare you off because of the word holiness. Stay with me.

Holiness = The perfect person you want to be. The level of 'goodness' you are trying to attain.

Wholeness = Who you really are, as a whole human. Wholeness = Kind, generous, vulnerable, funny, loving...but also angry, jealous, vindictive, petty, greedy, selfish... you get it? We are all whole people with many sides to us and these are human. To push down or deprive, rather than honouring some of the not so holy elements fails to honour our wholeness.

I like this. Thanks Jinx.

Monday, August 20, 2007

I open at the close


After prolonging as long as I could...finding no way to avoid it...I finished the last pages of the last ever Harry Potter book!

Now I feel empty.

Wearing pants. Winter coming. Dog limping. People being unmagical. There is an official street term for this feeling - already described on urbandictionary.com: http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=post-Potter+depression





Sunday, August 19, 2007

Look Sunny - You can see forever!

This weekend I headed to Waterloo. It turned out to be a hard visit. Our dog Winston is not doing well now. He is 12 and recently started limping a lot. Turns out he has a bad knee in one of his back legs. The vet gave two options a few weeks ago: 1) Limit his activity - no jumping, running, playing etc. and maybe it will heal itself since he is a small guy or 2) an expensive knee surgery with a painful 4 month recovery.

Well we tried option 1 and it is not working. Given his age and the seriousness of the surgery, we have ruled out 2. Argh. So we are having a sad time. Crying in the living room. Crying at brunch. Crying on poor Hop Along himself...


Sitting outside in Sunny's backyard with her and Garth this afternoon, I heard the leaves rustling in the cooled autumn sunshine. Many of you know that my favourite season is approaching. There is such a depth and wisdom to the beauty of autumn. I always experience the excitement of it, but there is also a sadness, and this year I feel it acutely.

We talked about seasons and about getting older. We talked about how older people live in a memories of happy times and we wondered in what space and time we would place ourselves when we were senile seniors. Sunny said she would likely be back in the time when Garth and Gillian were young. She remembered a summer in P.E.I. when Garth was 4... They climbed to the top of a high sand dune. Garth, on his belly, looked over the edge and said 'Look Sunny! You can see forever!'