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Showing posts from June, 2004

Home, sweet home. Where the hell's my shirt?

Well, that was five days to remember.
THURSDAY NIGHT: Three trips to drop off valuables--the last valuables to come being our cats, Streak and B.B. ("B.B" is short for "Bug Butt", because she runs around like there's one way up there. Other possible derivations: "Blonde Brain", "Beautiful Bubblehead"...well, you get the point.)
Our last move saw us cram both cats into a carrier. Streak took it stoically; B.B tried to claw my face off. So this time I took the little one in my arms for the trip over. She clung. I have divots now. Streak miaowed pathetically from her carrier and got B.B. going too...caterwauling fit to break your heart and at least one ear.
I curled up in a corner of the living room floor and started to go to sleep.
The fridge compressor came on. I peeled myself off the ceiling.
THURSDAY NIGHT, LATER: Woke up and stopped cats from killing each other.
SLIGHTLY LATER: Fridge compressor goes off. I wake up and look for the bomb cr…

Excuse me while I go grow up

Well, the papers are signed, the boxes are (sort of) packed, and Ken's yawning a mile a minute: it must be almost MOVING DAY!
I was supposed to get to bed EARLY last night, as I won't tonight and I *really* won't tomorrow. But, of course, the AFI's 100 best cinematic songs were profiled on TV last night. So we got to watching and listening to that whilst packing, and once you're fifty songs into a countdown, what's another (yawn) fifty? The upshot is I didn't get "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" until after eleven. For some or most of you out there, that's normal. Not for me. Especially since I hardly slept the night before. So far today I have fallen asleep three times.
Tomorrow figures to be a fun day. The moving commences. It looks like I will be staying in the new place tomorrow night, alone but for a couple of cats...the more time we have to acclimatize our cats (9 and 13) to new surroundings, the better. Last time we moved, I honestly thoug…

Dad's day

Today is the day set aside for fathers. It seems so unfair, really, that we only designate one day for them, after they've given so much to us.
Like my friend Jen, who recently wrote so eloquently of her dad in her blog, I had two fathers, the one I was born to and the one who largely raised me. Like her, too, I'm no longer on good terms with one of my dads. In my case, though, it's not from a lack of respect.
My first sight of John McCallum, the man who would soon become The Man in my life, came in August 1980. I was eight years old; he had just turned 21. Some mutual friends were moving, and John was helping them. I was sent out to introduce myself. "Hello", I said, "you must be John."
His first impression was of a polite little boy. Mine was of a giant. True, he only stood 6'2", but there was something about the way he carried himself that bespoke a man of substance.
His first impression was dead wrong: I was a spoiled little brat, a sore …

"He Became His Stories"

I just saw a bawlfest of a movie today: Tim Burton's BIG FISH. If you can get through to the end of this without crying, folks, you're dead and you just don't know it yet.
The story here, for those who haven't seen the film, concerns a young man whose father has always told him the most preposterous stories. As the old man lays dying (and there's a story about that, too), his son learns the truth of his stories and the truth of the man. "He became his stories". A fitting epitaph for an aspiring writer like me.
It's hard to watch a movie like this without thinking of one's own family. I've been recently warned that my mother, known to all and sundry as 'the wicked witch of the south' since her snubbing of my wedding, seems poised to make contact once again. We're not sure why, and to be honest, I'm a little leery of finding out.

My mom's full of stories, too. After we married without her attendance or blessing, we went nearl…

More political stuff...

I used to be *heavily* addicted to Usenet.
Today, there are many people who don't know what that is, despite the fact it still exists. Usenet is a collection of newsgroups covering every imaginable topic. You can post articles, and people all over the world can read them. Kind of like a blog. *smile*
Anyway, a search on my name turns up 1310 posts. That would have been over a period of two or three years at most.
Oh, it's so much fun to rediscover stuff you wrote ten or twelve years ago. There are things there I don't even remember writing. Who knew that at one point I was a baseball fanatic?
Anyway, this post came up...it stems from a debate on Canadian culture and government. I found myself nodding vigorously several times. So here it is:


Actually, Canadians _do_ have culture, and I'm not just talking about
Quebec.
Supposedly, the key point in the elusive identification of a Canadian has
to do with apathy. Well, not entirely...we care about many things, and we
hol…

The not-so-great debate

This morning, all chipper as usual, I asked my colleagues at Price Chopper if they had watched the political debate last night. Responses varied from "no" to "you're kidding, right?" (Actually, one person admitted to having watched the debate, but she said she's voting for Jack Layton, so now I'm wondering if *I* saw the debate last night.)
Look, these political debates are stupid. They degenerate within minutes into a verbal free-for-all, and anything of substance dissolves in nattering chatter. None of the politicians actually listen to each other: it's so much easier to argue with men made of straw.
Let's take, for example, Stephen Harper's views on abortion and same-sex marriage. He doesn't like either. But repeatedly last night, he said that he was willing to talk to Canadians, listen to Canadians, and put these issues before Parliament as free votes. At one point he firmly stated he would not pass legislation limiting "a woma…

Slow down, you move too fast...

I've been a Toronto Sun reader for almost as long as I could read. No, I don't look at the pictures--not even the one that used to grace (?) page three and now resides somewhere near the back...the one of the half-naked sapling with the navel stud "who loves dancing, shopping, and anal sex". In fact, I rarely read the news articles, which are often sensationalistic, sloppy, and riddled with typos. No, the appeal of the Toronto Sun, for me, resides below all that. For one thing, they don't censor their opinion writers, like most papers do: you'll often find two writers feuding with each other in print, which is both entertaining and edifying. For another, its sports coverage is among the best on the continent, and miles ahead of any of the other Toronto dailies'. And for a third, the Sunday Sun in particular is always a cornucopia of diversion, with a huge, compulsively readable entertainment section, at least three quizzes that are weekly staples in this …

Red-letter day

If history is any guide, I'll be having a memorable day today. To know why, you'd have to step into this here contraption. It merely *looks* like a Whirling Vortex of Death, but it's really my little memory machine. C'mon, let's go....*whoosh*

1989

I'm seventeen years old, and I'm in love.
At least, I call it that. I'm sure that's what it is. But that love is, tragically, unrequited; the girl (I'll call her Janet, it's one of her three middle names) wants to be "just friends"...oh, the pain of that little two-word phrase. "Just friends" means I have to listen to the endless litany of crushes she has, most of them on guys not worth half a booger (or half one of *my* boogers, in my humble estimation and if you catch the drift of my thoughts here.) "Just friends" means that I actually need to *console* her whenever the object of her affections treats her like a turd. This last happens quite often, confirming the lo…

"Mommy, Geoffrey's feeding Gravol to the cat!"

Why is it that every time I read anything about kids, they're doing something awful? Really, do you have any idea just how enticing the prospect of having kids in your life becomes when all you ever read is "Daaaad! Britney put a peanut butter sandwich in the DVD player!"? or "Mommy! Mike's punching me in the face!" or "Hey, what'd happen if we flushed an entire roll of toilet paper down the toilet?"
Parenting magazines are full of this stuff. So are general-interest magazines like Macleans. Kids = Chaos. As a man who abhors Chaos and wants it to stay far, far away from him, the acceptance of this theory (it seems to have pulled slightly ahead of gravity in the credibility department) is most unsettling, almost panic-inducing.
I brought this up in a moment of uncertainty a couple of months back and unwittingly startled and upset my beloved. She said something along the lines of 'if you care about "things" so much, you need to loo…

Throw, throw, throw your vote...

My good friend Jen just wrote an entry that shows I'm not the only one wondering which way to vote. Actually, I knew that before: polls show 49% of people could change their minds before election day, which strikes me as a *very* high number.
Elections are about the future of the country. That's probably, in a nutshell, why so many young people don't vote: the future, to most teens, is an abstract concept at best. I've always had a well-developed sense of consequence, driven into me by my mother when I was very young ("don't climb that tree, you'll fall out and break your neck!") and it's not hard to imagine a mother-voice chastising me even now: "Don't vote NDP, you'll bankrupt the country, they think money grows on trees, how could you even *think* of voting for them, we raised you better than that, go to your room!" Okay, she never *said* that, but she could have.
Until I was a teenager and a Reform Party sign went up on our …

Who to vote for?

Yesterday, Stephen Harper said that, if he won the election he would pass a law declaring marriage to be between a man and a woman, and he'd allow a free vote in Parliament on abortion and capital punishment both.

This from a man whose platform (until yesterday) I had very few reservations about. Now I don't know what to think.

We'll tackle these things one at a time.

GAY MARRIAGE

Judging from the rhetoric I've heard on a radio call-in show today, Harper's earned himself a lot of support around here, coming out against same-sex unions. There was a truly frightening creature on the air, claiming that 'the gay lifestyle' is anti-life. When the moderator asked him why he felt that way, he said that 'two men piggybacking all day and all night can't produce a child, and neither can two women doing whatever it is that gets them sexually turned on'.
As a married straight man who has had some fertility issues, I'm deeply offended on SO many levels w…

From the mailbox today...

ATTENTION!

OK you whining, panty-waisted, pathetic Maggots,
it's time for a little refresher course on exactly
why we Americans occasionally have to fight wars.
See if you can tear yourself away from your "reality"
TV and Starbucks for a minute, pull your head out
of your flabby ass - and LISTEN UP!!

(picture of Iraqis being humiliated at Abu Ghraib)


THIS is not "torture" or an "atrocity".
This is the kind of thing frat boys, sorority girls,
and academy cadets do to newcomers.

(another one, quite sickening, really)

A little fun at someone else's expense.

Certainly no reason to wring your hands or get
your panties in a wad. Got that Kennedy?

(graphic photos of that American that was beheaded)

THIS IS an atrocity!

(9/11 famous photo)

So Was This!!!

WHICH PART DON'T YOU GET?

Islam a peaceful religion???

Millions of these sons-of-bitches are plotting as we speak to
destroy our country and our way of life any way they can.
Some of them are …

Domesticity, our version thereof

Twenty three days to go until the BIG MOVE. And we're packed.
Well, one room is.
Okay, one wall of that room.
It's almost packed. Really.
But there's lots of time, right?
To all of you out there with kids, read this and weep: I'm currently sitting here, in the bedroom, and my lovely wife is asprawl on the bed behind me, reading. Blessed silence prevails. And that's utterly normal around here for this time of evening. The only thing different is that she's studying insurance law. (Wait, maybe she's asleep...nope, not yet. They haven't exactly gone out of their way to make this textbook exciting, according to her. Maybe they oughta get John Grisham to try his hand at textbook writing.)
I've said here before that I'm not a night person. What I am is a lark of the most chipper and irritating variety. After a shower (which is my version of a couple of cups of coffee), I'm bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, out cruising for worms.
This contrasts with…