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Showing posts from November, 2016

"Big Guy"

I knocked a kid out with one punch, once.

Didn't expect that, did you?

Neither did his friends. They stared at him on the ground, stared at me, and scattered to the four winds.

Neither did I. I stared at him on the ground, stared at my fist, though fuck, I killed him -- and scattered right after them.

My stepdad surveyed the little stick-figure of a stepson he'd inherited and told me if you ever get into a fight, punch first. Of course, this was after he taught me how to make a fist. Before he did that, I'd tuck my thumb into it. Good thing I never tried to punch anything like that.

I took his advice to heart. I tried very hard not to get in fights, and to be honest usually I didn't realize I was in a fight until I'd already taken the first punch (and like as not burst into tears, clouding my already iffy vision and making me even easier pickings). But that day...in the Berkshire Club in London, fifteen years old...

Some kids were picking on me. I was shooting pool…

"Please Don't Take My Man...'

There are certain songs that are touchstones for me: they instantly bring me to a different place and time. Many of mine date to early childhood. My mom usually had music playing. Harmony leached into my blood from very young.

I stumbled across some old Olivia Newton John a few weeks ago and it was like diving into a warm pool of nostalgia. She was one of Mom's favourites, and so her songs were on heavy rotation for years...and then they receded with time until Youtube brought them rushing back in on a tide of memory. Please, Mister, PleaseIf You Love Me (Let Me Know), and especially Let Me Be There...I've been playing them a lot lately.

Many of the songs that resonated with me as a kid, oddly enough, have poly themes. You should have seen me bopping around the house to Stephen Stills, or lamenting along with Mary MacGregor -- this is a seminal poly song:

There's been another man that I've needed and I've loved
But that doesn't mean I love you less 
And he kno…

Communicate, Communicate, Communicate

It boggles my mind how often I hear things like

"I think she thinks that ______"

or

"I'm not sure if he ________"

I invariably reply, have you asked? And usually I get a look that suggests "asking" is the last thing anyone sane would want to do. Sometimes, to be fair, I hear "yes, I asked, and she said thus-and-such, but I don't think she really meant it."

So ask again. Get more detail. Seriously.

"We need to talk". Four words that seem to strike fear into the heart of most men. I, by contrast hear "we need to talk" and get excited. Cool, there's a good chance of exposed feelings in the next few minutes! 

Is that odd? Hell, I think it's the only sane response to those four words. Maybe she's angry with me: "we need to talk" is my chance to resolve that anger productively. Who wouldn't want that?

Someone called me a very private person last week and it amused me mightily. Of all the things I&#…

Partial Retraction

This quote is making the rounds on Facebook:

IF YOU'RE NOT PART OF THE VICTIMIZED GROUPS, YOU ARE NOT ALLOWED TO DECIDE WHETHER OR NOT THOSE GROUPS ARE ALLOWED TO BE AFRAID.
It stopped me in my tracks and made me realize the tone of some of my last blog may have implied otherwise. C'mon, I basically said. How big a boogeyman can Donald Trump possibly BE?
Pretty big, if you stop to listen to the concerns of those across the United States who did not vote for him. 
There have been hundreds of hate crimes reported since Tuesday. "MAKE AMERICA WHITE AGAIN" is a common refrain. This is wearyingly familiar: we just saw it with Brexit. And we'll see it again in the year ahead as several establishment European leaders, most prominent among them Angela Merkel, stand to be deposed in elections. 
The world just got a lot more frightening.
That said, the response has been heartwarming. Not the "mostly peaceful protests" -- "mostly peaceful" being code for …

He Won

He won.
The bugger won.

I'm not as surprised as many, but I can't say I really expected Trump to win.  I had thought that his odious and repulsive character would prove just too much.  It does, in truth, scare me that so many people listened to every pussy-grabbing, daughter-fucking, race-baiting turdlet that issued from that man's mouth and still voted for him.

I usually quote John Michael Greer with respect and admiration, but here --

I would be just as likely to vote for a surly misanthrope who loathes children, kicks puppies, and has deviant sexual cravings involving household appliances and mayonnaise, if that person supports the policies I want on the issues that matter to me. It really is that simple.

-- I'm quite taken aback. I get his point: the President is one person, a figurehead, really, and it's the government (s)he heads that actually gets stuff done, or not. What's more, the President only heads the executive branch of the government. Canadian P…

Personal Questions, Personal Answers

This has the potential to be one of the longest blog entries I've ever written. I may split it if it gets too unwieldy.

________________

I've been going over old blogs in search of new material, and I've found a motherlode. Back in January, 2015, I wrote a post entitled "How To Fall In Love With Anyone".  Well, 90% of anyone. Sit down for about ninety minutes, ask each other a set of increasingly personal questions, and listen closely to each other's answers. This has been scientifically proven to bring people much closer together--even near strangers stand a ninety percent chance of being friends after this exercise.

What I DIDN'T do was answer the questions.

And so:

Set I: Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest?

John Michael Greer, the former Grand Archdruid of the Ancient Order of Druids in America, whose blog is linked in this sidebar, whose thoughts on a wide range of topics I highly respect.

Would you like to b…

Bucket List

How have I gone 12 years of blogging and never done one of these?

PLACES TO SEE

(a) checked off (but may well want to do again)

Disney World This has been the trip of my life so far. Story herehere,  here and here (yes, it took four posts to document). Within thirty seconds of arrival, Eva (who has never shown an interest in going back to anywhere...wanted to come back here. And we will.  Cabin retreat on a lake.  Our honeymoon at the Bonnie View Inn on Lake Kashagawigamog near Haliburton, Ontario. I can't say enough good things about this place. The food was exquisite, the honeymoon chalet pure bliss, and they even knocked about fifteen percent off our bill as a surprise honeymoon present.

Cedar Point, Sandusky, Ohio I am a roller coaster aficionado, and Cedar Point is heaven on earth for people like me. Six Flags Magic Mountain has three more coasters...but Cedar Point's are faster and taller. I've been twice, once in 1992 and again in 2003, and I really want to go back.

Not Okay, Cupid

Dating has a hell of a lot in common with job hunting. Especially nowadays, when your online dating profile functions as your resume.

Back when I was out of work,  I was sending out reams of resumes and not hearing anything back. This was incredibly disheartening; I was writing and editing resumes and cover letters that worked back in grade five.
I swallowed my pride (bitter taste that was) and went in to Employment Ontario, where I learned that the art of resume writing, not to mention job hunting in general, has evolved considerably. My resume was utterly shredded and then rebuilt from the ground up; the finished product immediately yielded me three interviews.

Which I also bombed. Luckily, EO has seminars on interview skills as well, also very helpful. But in the end, none of those aids are going to do a damned thing for you if you don't have confidence in yourself. And that's a third thing they really try hard to instil in you there. My caseworker, Eleanor Given, always ma…

Caving In

You'll notice I have refrained from voicing an opinion on the shitshow that is the American election.

There are reasons for that.

The first is because everybody else is doing nothing but, and following the crowd is boring; besides which, I'd be kidding myself if I thought I had anything new to say.

The second reason is related to the first: people are bored. Some of them, believe it or not, have been bored since before this interminable election started, because politics.

The thing is, though, American politics is getting more and more entertaining all the time, if you consider trashy reality television entertaining. Indeed, it's hard to tell the difference. One of the contestants nominees is a former reality television star, after all. Soap operas don't play out anywhere near as lurid as this campaign has.

It really is an impossible choice, you know. And I say that knowing just how batshit crazy Donald Trump is...how bigoted, how misogynistic, how spectacularly unsuit…

One Year

What do you call the anniversary of a death?

An "un" - iversary, perhaps?

I don't know, but I can tell you it's been a year since my mom passed away in a fire.

_____________

I miss you, Mom. Still. I suspect I always will.

I started missing you long before you died, of course. We had those years apart, and then when we reset our relationship there was a lot withheld, mostly but not entirely on your side.

I understand that, now. Sort of. I've always wanted to be close to the people I'm close to, but we weren't close at all there, for a while, were we?
It started when I left home, didn't it? I was one confused teenager. I wanted independence, like any other teenager of that era....but I wasn't ready for it and I knew I wasn't ready for it. I'm not blaming anyone for this, least of all you...I had lessons to learn that I never could have learned at home.
I tell myself that my rootlessness, my obliviousness to any imagined future, stemmed from…

Going Moldy....

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