Monthly Archives: September 2009

I Heart Canadian Music

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I’ve been listening to a lot of Canadian music lately. And no, I’m not listening to Céline Dion or Nickelcrap or any other clichéd garbage that they overplay on the radio.  I’ve been getting into the more genuine and talented artists that we have up here in the Great White North.

Those who I adore range from older artists like Joni Mitchell, Bruce Cockburn and Gordon Lightfoot:

…to more well-known artists like Hawksley Workman (Who is my current obsession)

..and Sloan, The Tragically Hip, Matt Good, Sarah McLaughlan, Mylène Farmer, Sam Roberts, Sarah Harmer.

As well as groups whose music I’m just discovering like Karkwa (Nat posted about this guy on her blog. Thanks Nat!) , Patrick Bruel, Claude Dubois, USS, Bran Van 3000 and Danko Jones. (I particularly like this song and video of theirs)

Do you have any favorite Canadian bands?

Black and blue weekend

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What did you do on Friday night? Because I can guarantee that it was a better night than mine. I spent Friday evening at the local high school waiting….and waiting..and then trying but failing to give blood at a donor drive held by Canadian Blood Services. When it was finally my turn, two nurses spent five minutes arguing which vein to tap on my left arm.  After the second one left, the one I was assigned kept stabbing me with the needle in various spots on the inside of my elbow joint.

Yeah, OW!!

And after all that stabbing and squeezing of the tourniquet, they still couldn’t get half a litre out of me! How is that? Honestly? So now, my inner arm is bruised to hell and looks like a bunch of vampires were chewing on it! I love giving blood, but between last time when my iron was too low and now, its becoming frustrating. Next time, I’ll do as they suggested and wear a different shirt, but if that doesn’t work, then I’ll just donate at the central location where the staff aren’t so stab happy and better (and nicer!) at drawing blood.

Hubby was also sore after helping out his volunteer group clean up a camp site that was used over the summer by a camp for at risk youth.  His job involved  hauling lumber around and cleaning up leftover debris. He also got tapped accidently in the head with a piece of wood and almost got a rusty nail into his leg, which made me freak out a little. (O.k. a lot! I’m a worrier, what can I say?) But I’m proud of him for sticking with this charity group, they do good work for the community. (Even if they delegate tasks a little unevenly. LOL)

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Anyway, this weekend, I also watched the movie “Happy-Go-Lucky“. Basically its about an English woman named Poppy with big teeth who acts like she’s drunk 24-7. She’s high on life. At first its irritating, but then it’s kind of inspiring-I tend to take things too seriously sometimes, so maybe I should lighten up more often like her. (I’ll never wear her patterned pantyhose and orange panties combo though. LOL)

For the rest of the weekend, hubby and I whined about our sore bodies while watching rented reruns of  “Six Feet Under“. I didn’t get into this show when it first aired, but I really wish I had because it is so great!

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The series is about a family who run a funeral home and presents their relationships with each other and the outside world in a bittersweet way. There is also background information on the people who use their services and the deceased, so every character-living or dead-is well thought out. If you are looking for a good show and are tired of the meandering nonsense of Desperate Housewives or True Blood, then you should check it out! 🙂

Pictures-http://www.zazzle.co.uk/warning_crazy_nurse_t_shirt-235966372846422917

http://www.weekinrewind.com/2009/01/happy-go-lucky-movie-review-2009.html

http://media.photobucket.com/image/six%20feet%20under%20show/arthur_fonzarelli/six_feetIII6.jpg

Conversations with Bus Drivers. Vol.1

Today, after waiting a few minutes at a bus shelter with only three walls, a bus pulls up and feeling chattier than usual, I board, face the driver and point to the defunct shelter:

Me: “That bus stop shelter had one of its walls smashed weeks ago. When is OC Transpo going to fix it so we don’t have to freeze in a few weeks?”

Bus driver: “What? Where, I don’t see anything.”

Me: “Exactly! One of the shelter’s walls was destroyed.”

Bus driver: (with light going off in his head) “Oh! That! Well, that’s not good”

Me: “No its not good. (duh!) So could you ask someone when its going to be fixed?”

Bus driver: “Sure, yeah”. Smiles.

I really hope somebody gets on that. But it was a LONG time before someone got around to cleaning up all the shards of glass from that wall’s demise, so I’m not holding my breath on getting the replacement wall put up anytime soon. Nice to see my tax and bus pass dollars hard at work. *grumble*

Second conversation with second bus driver:

Driver, who is seconds away from retirement and coo-coo craaazy, points to idiot on bicycle who is crossing across traffic in a bold fashion and says:

“Look at that, do you see?”

Me, standing up waiting to disembark at my stop, “The cyclist?”

Driver: “Yes”..mutters something incoherent, then says, “some people are in such a rush”.

Me: Thinking of all the times this nutso bastard honked his horn at people angrily, yelled at pedestrians crossing to “walk faster!” and who loves to drive super fast and stop abruptly, which causes all his passengers to cling on to the support bars with a look of dead panic in their eyes.

“Well some people are crazy.”

Bus driver continues to star at cyclist: “Yep!”

Office Conflict

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Let me tell you all a little story-During the last hellish winter, I got to know a certain co-worker who, unfortunately turned out to be a total bitch and who later tried to stab me in the back. After said petty backstabbing, I was obviously not as friendly with her and pretty much gave her the “eye” whenever she sauntered into my office. This led her to pretty much give me the same treatment and since then, we pretty much both can’t stand each other.

But sometimes I wonder- Would have been better if I had just ignored her bitchiness and continued to pretend to like her? Probably, but how does one fake liking someone who is THAT big of an asshole? Its really, really hard.

When I started this job and received training from the last person in my position, she told me: “Just stay out of trouble, keep your nose clean and you’ll be fine”

Which I fully intended to do and stayed cordial with people but pretty much kept to myself, so I wouldn’t get wrapped up in any office gossip b.s. This was my plan, but unfortunately I still managed to get sucked into a conflict with someone and now work functions are tense and uncomfortable whenever we’re together in a room. I guess I am just way too honest and straightforward for my own good. I tend to wear my moods and impressions of people right on the surface, not all pushed down and repressed, where they should be. When I was younger, I used to hate how fake adults were with each other-All saccharine when greeting and then talking shit about the other person right after they left the room. But perhaps, that is the key to survival in the passive aggressive world of the office. Ignoring and singing “la la la can’t hear you” when the jerks of the world try and get a rise out of you and putting on Oscar worth performances of faked respect seem to be the keys to happiness and harmony in the workplace.

Patience and maintaining a professional demeanor (no matter what) are probably things I should work on. Well, until we get home, then I can bitch and moan about difficult coworkers as much as I want!;)

Wedding Weekend

We had another wedding weekend. On Friday, we drove to Carp for the rehearsal dinner.

Drive to Carp-Sep.18.09

The gathering was held at the groom’s parents place. His parents get to travel all over the world as part of their job, so it was neat to look at some of their finds. Like this horse…

Jim's rehearsal dinner-Horseand painting..

Jim's rehearsal-Painting

I didn’t know a lot of people there so I felt a bit awkward, but dinner was good. (Except for some spanakopita that had sand in it. Yes, sand. It.was.disgusting!)

Jim's wedding-Clare signing registryThe next day, I got my hair done and zipped on over to the Gallery. The ceremony itself was short and sweet. The bride wore practically the same dress and hairstyle (with the bun and large flower on the side) as the other bride who we saw in Vancouver over the summer. But she looked beautiful. While I was snapping pictures, I also noticed one of the bridesmaids had a neat tattoo, so I took a photo of it as well.

Jim's wedding-TattooThis is the area of the gallery where they hold wedding ceremonies. Its got a fantastic view of Parliament Hill and the Rideau Canal.

Jim's wedding-Nat.Gallery ceremony

But you can also step outside on the balcony to take a better picture of the view.

Parliament Hill

Dinner was good and followed by cupcakes.

CupcakesThey also had poutine laid out later on in the night. (At which point I felt like blowing up). Poutine is not a ‘Canadian tradition’ at weddings or anything, but I think the couple wanted the out of towners to try it.

Jim's wedding-Poutine

The speeches were “interesting”. Many people were completely sloshed by then and the microphone became a hot commodity. In fact, just as the bride and groom stood up to make their speech, some bald guy grabbed the mic and said: “I know that you guys want to say something. But I wanna say something first…okaaay….”

I dubbed him the “Kanye of Weddings” and wondered exactly how much he spent at the cash bar before eating dinner. LOL. Anyways, it was one of the less painful weddings I’ve been to, everything moved along pretty quickly and smoothly and you didn’t have to practically die of hunger before you got some food.   Now we’ve just got one more wedding to go next month in Toronto.  I hope the weather is as nice.

TGIF with Kittens!

TGIF babies! What are your plans for the weekend? Tonight I’ll be going to a rehearsal dinner, followed by a wedding tomorrow evening at the National Gallery of Canada. (The groom is apparently loaded) and then on Sunday…I’ll probably relax, paint and clean the house. 

Anyway, I was going to put this video with a future post that featured some of my favorite music videos, but it was too cute and charming not to share right now.  Happy Friday everyone!

A Bus full of Hipsters makes me feel old

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I don’t usually care what people wear, but after another night of crappy broken sleep, my tolerance was greatly reduced this morning.  Anyway, as I dragged my weary butt on the local bus,  it felt like I was having a nightmare of the most pretentious proportions-Everybody on the bus was wearing bright neon colours and cheap sweaters with bad 80s graphics on them and acting like they were rock stars. (Ha!)

Why the hell do kids dress like this when they weren’t even alive or even a microscopic speck in their parents eyes in the 80s?

But I guess its inevitable-70s fashion got regurgitated in the early 90s, so its now time for the 80s. But honestly, I really can’t help but laugh when some young schmuck struts around in a “I love vinyl” t-shirt he bought from D-Tox. This particular group of kids also pissed me off because half of them insisted on spreading their legs wide or sitting on the outside seat on the bus, so nobody could sit next to them. One other girl insisted on blocking a bunch of other seats so she could smooch her equally hip boyfriend whose pants looked about two sizes too tight! I went right up to her and barked “Excuse me!” and she looked at me like I had green skin. Yeah, the nerve of me trying to get access to available seats!

Looking at all these young fools makes me feel really old. Perhaps I shouldn’t judge-I mean there were plenty of people giving me the ol “What the hell is she thinking”? look when I was 16 and wearing head to toe black with black eyeliner and industrial music coming out of my walkman. But back then I didn’t want to follow the big trends and tried to find my own melodramatic way. I didn’t want to be “goth”, I just wanted to be different. But kids nowadays (there, I feel even older now!) seem to just blindly follow major fashions and swallow whatever crap is put out there. First it was gangsta rap and now its hipster crap. (Oh and don’t even get me started on “text speak” and its destruction of the English language!)

Makes me nervous as to which big trend they’ll be following next or what sort of horrors will be mass marketed towards them in the future.