Thursday, February 25, 2010

News Flash!

Melissa of So About What I Said... has just informed me of the most wonderful news! There is going to be a rerelease of The Babysitter's Club - fancy new covers, a prequel and everything! She has more info than I do, but may I just say that this makes me happy. I used to love these friggin' books. I would pre-order them from the Scholastic catalogue and pick them up at Sir Charles Tupper Elementary's bi-monthly Book Fair and tear into tales from my friends Kristy (whom I admit I found a tad bossy), Stacey (who was the coolest because she was from New York), Mary-Anne (remember all of the Logan drama?!), Claudia (all business), Dawn (the California dreamer, and enviously pretty), Mallory (the budding writer, much like I imagined myself to be), and Jessie.

So glad a new generation gets to be exposed to these literary gems.

I wonder if they'll start up the Babysitter's Little Sister Club again? I'm sure I've got my old membership kit somewhere... ;)

Okay so I was going to show a clip from the movie (that I most definately watched/loved) but instead I found a clip from the tv series (which I didn't know existed) which stars a hilariously young and adorable Zach Braff. AMAZING.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Monday, February 22, 2010

Post Script

The concert I mentioned? The music was so great I feel compelled to share some:

Taken By Trees was the open act. I really dug the "Middle-Eastern feel" to her newer songs, as well as the African-like percussion

The headliner was El Perro del Mar. She's easily one of the coolest chicks I have ever seen in real life...or maybe ever. I'd never heard of before but all my friend had to do to get me to go to the concert was to show me this video:

Today was a positively magnificent day. The sun shone from sunrise to sunset (the later of which wasn't until after 6pm!) The temperature was 5 degrees above centigrade, birds were chirping, the sky was blue and a vernal energy seemed to pulse through everything and everyone. Upon rising my mood instantly lifted from the lethargic gray tones of days past and quickened to a sunny pace in keeping with the weather. I wore no wool socks or winter boots, replaced my winter coat with a wool blazer, left the hat at home and took to the sidewalks excited and invigorated by the sun and the promise of warm weather.

I went for a walk. A long walk. From Glen Stewart Ravine Park through the Beaches along the boardwalk and home. I stepped in mud and patted dogs as joyous as I was to be outside. I sat on a bench and stared at the ocean while eating a juicy red apple and listening to passersby.

Tonight I went to a concert. I heard two enviable and talented women sing beautiful songs with a brilliant band. I marveled at visual displays and gleefully squinted at bright, colourful lights.

Not once today did I lament that I 'should' be doing something else or 'wish' that I could be somewhere else. I was present. I was content.

Spring is coming and I cannot wait.

Friday, February 19, 2010

poetry corner


Does the piece fit into place?
Smart. Too smart.
I answer phones and staple memos
You objectify me with unfocused eyes and condescending smiles.
This is the wrong place.
My piece has too many jagged edges, sharp remarks.
I can objectify too.
The picture gets blurry
Cookie-cutter suits, crisp notes, dull shapes;
Signatures and dollar signs to make it worth the while.
Cut me up, fill the mould
Lines drawn, position filled.
File; Smile; Monotonous tile.
The piece fits, but is it in the right place?

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Wonderful Writing

This morning I wanted to share a blurb from the book I'm reading. It's by Zadie Smith, whom I thoroughly enjoy and whom I think is a superb writer.

"At Paddington the doors opened and he stepped into the warm smog of the station. He wound his scarf into a ball and stuffed it in his pocket. He was no tourist and did not look about him, not hat the sheer majesty of interior space, nor at that intricate greenhouse ceiling of patterned glass and steel. He walked straight out to the open air, where he might roll a cigarette and smoke it. The absence of snow was sensational. To hold a cigarette without wearing gloves, to reveal one's whole face to the air! Howard rarely felt moved by an English skyline, but today just to see an oak and an office block, outlined by a bluish sky with no interpolation of white on either, seemed to him a landscape of rare splendour and refinement. Relaxing in a narrow corridor of sun, Howard leaned against a pillar. A stretch of black cabs lined up. People explained where they were going and were given generous help lugging bags into back seats. Howard was taken aback to hear twice in five minutes the destination 'Dalston'. Dalston was a filthy East End slum when Howard was born into it, full of filthy people who had tried to destroy him - not least of all his own family. Now, apparently, it was the sort of place where perfectly normal people lived. A blonde in a long powder-blue overcoat holding a portable computer and a pot plant, an Asian boy dressed in a cheap, shiny suit that reflected light like beaten metal - it was impossible to imagine these people populating the East London of his earliest memory. Howard dropped his fag and nudged it into the gutter. He turned back and walked through the station, keeping pace with a flow of commuters, allowing himself to be bustled by them down the steps to the underground. In a standing-room-only tube carriage pressed up against a determined reader, Howard tried to keep his chin clear of a hardback and considered his mission, such as it was."

I just love her word choice, and description of detail. Of course the fact that it takes place in London, my most favourite of all places, probably factors in somewhere as well. It's a good read - I recommend it (and it's the first book I've rented from the Public Library since joining last week!)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


CBC News - Canada - The growing fight over personal information

Just finished this article - very interesting. It's funny because despite being "a blogger" I consider myself to be quite a private, guarded person. It's slightly disconcerting to think about how much of Me is being broadcasted/shared without my knowledge or consent.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


via The Village Voice


So in an effort to be more "in the know" I woke up this morning and began perusing online news sites. I am going to try and do this as often as I can, because not only do I get to learn about current global events, but also discover fun tidbits like this:

Google Russia creates virtual tour of Trans-Siberian railway journey
Famous route spans six days in real time with tour guides, geotagged satellite views and choice of background noise

I think this is the coolest thing since sliced bread. I've always secretly wanted to go to Russia / take the Trans-Siberian and now I can do it from the comfort of my own home! (A slightly less thrilling adventure, I'll admit however considerably more economical)

Check out this clip:

Or read the full article here.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Boy oh boy do I wish I was headed somewhere warm and sunny...

Quote of the Day!

Everyday we should hear at least one little song, read one good poem, see one exquisite picture, and, if possible, speak a few sensible words.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Friday, February 12, 2010

Have a look at some of the photos from the World Press Photo Awards. They are phenomenal. I wonder if the photographers are always aware of the poignancy of the images they are capturing or if there is an element of chance involved. Well there is no doubt a degree of skill involved in capturing images such as these, I really hope that there are moments when the photographer scans over his films (or rather the icons on his digital camera) sees a shot such as number 18 and beams with the knowledge that he has coincidentally frozen a truly original and amazing moment for the rest of the world to experience.

I really want to start taking more photos. I'm about to head out into the glorious afternoon sunshine for a stroll, maybe I'll take my handy dandy Canon Elph with me...

Seriously though, look at these photos

Thursday, February 11, 2010

I got a job interview!

It's next week.
I plan to adhere to the "Don'ts" outlined in this hilarious comic

Song of the Day

Just got back from the grocery store, and while listening to my beloved Carla Bruni prooved adequate for my trip, the bright warm sun made me smile inside and out.

When I came on I put this song on instead. Spring-like weather deserves something funky and upbeat.

Here's to warm sunny afternoons!

Extraordinary People

Today marks the 20th Anniversary of the day Nelson Mandela was released from prison.

What is it that makes a person extraordinary? A dear friend and I were discussing this yesterday; whether it is the ability to push forward and be strong, or to remain steadfast and stoic when confronted with opposition. We didn't really make up our minds but concluded that to be extraordinary you must have faith in your beliefs. We weren't talking about religion, just a fundamental and fervent belief in what one deems to be true or what one stands for, to the point where no effort is too small in getting ones truth heard or belief understood. In order to achieve extraordinary things I think one must believe in herself when no one else will. Or perhaps a person can't be extraordinary on his own. Nelson Mandela said that he only achieved what he achieved because he always stood on the shoulders of giants that stood before him. Maybe part of what sets extraordinary people apart from everybody else is knowing when to stand alone and when to reach out for help.

On a day that celebrates the freedom of an extraordinary man, I suggest we think about what makes a man extraordinary and about the moments when we are extraordinary; for while there are few Mandelas, Luther Kings, and Picassos I think that we all at least have the ability to be extraordinary in us somewhere, and I know that there are moments when we step outside of our ordinary selves - even if only for a minute.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

I slept in this morning!

I'm not sure what is more lame, the fact that this excites me or the fact that "sleeping in" equates to 9:18am

Last night it snowed so the light is muted and grey, and with the exception of the persistent hum of the recycling truck outside there is a stillness; the quiet calm that often accompianies the morning after a snowfall.

My roommate wakes up every morning and writes. She doesn't think or set goals, she just writes. It's calming just to watch her do it. There is something about putting pen to paper that cannot be replaced. Since I got my Blackberry about 10 weeks back, I tried to use its digital planner but the other day I was perusing the coolest of bookshops and had to buy an agenda. A Moleskine 2010 Day Planner to be precise. It is beautiful and I love it. I can write down reminders and things to do without having to enter a start and end time and un-check a 'conference call' box, and my whole week is laid out before my eyes, and I get to cross things off and fill things in, and I'm telling you it is so much better.

Also something that makes Moleskine Day Planners superior to silly digital agendas is the video they made about them:

Tuesday, February 9, 2010


Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surender be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quitely and clearly; and listen to others,
even to the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexatious to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter,
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your acheivements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Especially do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be.
And whatever your labours and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life,
keep peace in your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.
by Max Ehrmann
My mother gave me a beautiful copy of this poem when I graduated university, just as she had been given when she graduated university. I just unpacked it this afternoon, along with the last of my possessions sent from Halifax. I am going to keep it on my coffee table. Words like this are good to have at hand.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Do you ever second guess yourself?

I do it all the time. All the time. I think things like "I should have worn that shirt instead of this shirt" or "I wish I'd gone there instead of here" or "Have I made a mistake?" or "That was a wrong decision"

Maybe that's not second guessing, maybe that's regretting. Either way, I would like to quit. At my age I should be strong in my convictions, fervently driven towards my goals, trudging onward with confidence into my Great Adult Life. Or something.

Now I'm second guessing this entry. I wanted to post some sort of entry today; I feel like I had a weekend that would inspire some sort of writing but it has also tired me out so instead I am exhausted, bundled up and sitting cozy on my couch rambling on about perceived shortcomings.

Thursday, February 4, 2010


“I may still not know what I want to be when I grow up, but I do know that someday I want to live in a house filled with my books and travel souvenirs. And the walls that aren’t covered in bookshelves will be covered with photos of my family and friends. When I leave the house I will be going to a job I love, and I’ll return to a person I love. So, that’s the dream I’m working on.”
- Amber Morely.

found here
So I know I've already ranted and raved about my apartment, but I'm going to do it again.

I am tired.

I am tired of finding new spaces to clean every day.
I am tired of discovering new things to be fixed every day.
I am tired of wheezing and sneezing all the time due to dust and dirt and smelly cleaners.
I am tired of stinging, sore hands that are so dry the skin has begun to crack/break out in rash.
I am tired of living out of my suitcases because I don't have anywhere to store my clothes yet.

My apartment exhausting.

I am happy.

I am happy to be living in my own (atypically large) space.
I am happy to have a comfortable, cosy bed that is mine.
I am happy to have a working internet connection.
I am happy to be in control of the meals I consume.
I am happy to invision all the ways to make these rooms beautiful.

My apartment is exciting.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

My friend has started a blog! Correction: My friend IS starting a blog. While sitting next to me on my couch; that's right, I am witnessing history in the making. It's called words and floorboards. She wants to keep it an invite-only blog, so maybe I shouldn't be broadcasting this to the world but I'm just so excited!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Total exhaustion: Imminent

What. A. Weekend.

I'm going to give a play-by-play, and hopefully once reading it you'll realize why I am resorting to lists/point form.


::Packing. All day long. It is truly remarkable to me how much stuff I am able to accumulate over short periods of time.

::Out to dinner because it is Winterlicious*! (Possibly my new favourite time of year). Went to Trevors Kitchen which was delightful, and I'm pretty sure I would do anything for their parsnip soup with sage brown butter & bacon recipe


::Wake-up call 6 am

::Head to Scarborough for a day's volunteer work with Habitat for Humanity. Quadruple layers helped to ward off cold, and steel-toed boots and hard hat aided in my looking rediculous. I had a blast though. I used a mitre saw and a nail gun and cocking, err caulking (why yes, us 25 year olds had as much fun with that double entendre as a bunch of school boys). My group installed baseboards and window trip for an entire house. Handy skills learned, fun had, body worked to the bone.

::Saturday evening gratefully provided me with a Hugh Grant movie marathon on television which was enjoyed whilst final packing was completed and sore muscles were tended to.


::Wake-up call 7:40am ->not an alarm this time though, just nerves as it is MOVING DAY

::Load and unload 2 station wagons full of all of my things into giant empty apartment. Head to the grocery store to pick up a cool $70 worth of cleaning products (although I must say, apartment was in quite good condition, far from the disaster zone that I'd pictured in my mind at 7:30 Sunday morning)

::Delicious and neccessary lunch break at Pho Hung. Best pho soup in town. (Saw an old university cronie to boot!)

::Afternoon consumed with cleaning (where luckily 2 of the most bestest friends ever helped)

::5pm. Off to UHaul to pick up giant cargo van to aid in the pick-up of Sofa. Sofa is beautiful. Cream Ultra Suede, perfect condition. I heart craigslist.

::While in loading bay of Sofaman's condo, spot dresser, coffee table, floor lamp and 2 sets of shelves. Sofaman says they are free for the taking - JACKPOT

::6:30pm. Loading sofa into apartment prooves difficult. Much swearing and sighing as pristine couch gets dirtied while squeezing through door and being dropped on ground by accident.

::7pm. Return van. Realize not a drop of water has been consumed all day so an emergency pit-stop at Subway for some bottles of water (and maybe some cookies) is made.

::8:30pm. Amazing designer friend comes over with materials for curtains. I install brackets, she sews drapes, her bf watches the Grammy's, we all eat a pizza et voila! I have fabulous curtains that make my living room look homey and magnificent.

::10:45pm. 2 days of drywall/sawdust/regular dust/household cleanser aromas results in the worst wheezing/asthma I've had in ages. Severe exhaustion also sets in. Leave apartment in its current state, and head to my cousins house to sleep in a bed...after a steaming hot shower and a cup of tea (naturally).

Today I get a bed of my very own, and I will strive to clean and set-up the entire bathroom and kitchen. Wish me luck!

*Annual city-wide food&wine extravaganza where all of the Toronto's most fabulous restaurants create prix fixe menus so laymen like me can afford to sample their gastronomic delights. Being a foodie, and one who spends money in less-than-appropriate ways, I find it to be a dream come true. This week's outing: Conviction