Thursday, August 30, 2007

face and pants

My older sister and I had a really important discussion about making up nicknames and agreed on two general guidelines.

1. Appending "pants" to a word can result in a playful, affectionate nickname.

2. Appending "face" to almost any word will more often result in an insulting, derisive nickname.

  • fartpants (teasing!) vs fartface (you're an asshole!)
  • chattypants (isn't it cute how talkative you are!) vs chattyface (STFU)
  • monkeypants (oh, you're just adorable) vs monkeyface (consider a career in radio)

I'm sorry, that's all I've got for you. Now I'm blowing town for five days.

By all means, feel free to contribute your own charming examples in the comments while I go play at the cottage and swim with my sisters and drink delicious St. Ambroise beer on big hunks of tree-dappled, sun-warmed granite.

Monday, August 27, 2007

extremely Canadian

Here's an explanation; here are the lyrics:

The Log Drivers' Waltz
If you should ask any girl from the parish around
What pleases her most from her head to her toes
She'll say, "I'm not sure that it's business of yours
But I do like to waltz with a log driver".

For he goes birling down a-down the white water
That's where the log driver learns to step lightly
It's birling down, a-down white water
A log driver's waltz pleases girls completely.

When the drive's nearly over, I like to go down
To see all the lads while they work on the river
I know that come evening they'll be in the town
And we all want to waltz with a log driver.

To please both my parents I've had to give way
And dance with the doctors and merchants and lawyers
Their manners are fine but their feet are of clay
For there's none with the style of a log driver.

I've had my chances with all sorts of men
But none is so fine as my lad on the river
So when the drive's over, if he asks me again
I think I will marry my log driver.

farewell to the world's only reliable newspaper

Yup, it's true. No more World Weekly News, i.e. no more reports of alien Elvis babies suckling at Osama bin Laden's Satanic goat teat.

Friday, August 24, 2007

what you need

My sister called me from Whitehorse yesterday morning to read the following classified ad to me:
ongoing, unmanned garage sale

concrete pad
1980 Toyota parts
1967 Chevy S10 parts
screen door
army cot
sheet tin
and more!

mile 12 Carcross Road
by donation

View Larger Map

some emails are better than others

From my friend Mike, who builds houses out of wood and just built one for himself*:

good morning.
at least so far.

I made a coffee, went for a walk along the tracks listening to cbc, now I am going to open up the septic tank, reach my hand into my own feces, pull out the filter to clean it so shit will stop flowing out on my lawn.
in the future I will clean it before it gets up past arm level.
hope your near future is brighter than mine.

Not too long ago, another friend (also, strangely, named Mike) commented "Your blog is like a diner where they're famous for lemon meringue pie."

How's that for tasty, tasty pie?

* and who has a three-legged dog named Skip

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

change the lightbulb, wiggle the hips

A dear friend of mine married this lovely fella on the weekend and they had a traditional Hindu ceremony. Well, 1/3 traditional - they chopped what is normally a three-hour ceremony to a one-hour ceremony.

A few surprises for me:
  • Drinks and snacks were provided, and you munch and chat and watch what's going on through just about the whole ceremony! People get up and walk around every now and then, even just go stand by the dais that the priest is sitting on. It's lively.
  • Even though beautiful to begin with, the bride changes clothes part way through (in private) into a red sari given to her from the groom's family. When she returns to the ceremony, draped in silk and gold, she is the most gorgeous thing you've ever seen.
  • I have had most colours redefined for me through the glory of saris.

One of my favourite little moments from the wedding was when I noticed the couple, about forty-five minutes into the extravaganza, find each others' fingers. That's their Hindu priest in the front, saying a prayer in Sanskrit.

That night, the bride's lean and pretty thirteen year old cousin all the way from Sri Lanka taught us a range of amazing Bollywood dance moves. I'm still practicing.

It was on a Sunday afternoon because according to tradition you have to pick a date and time that works astrologically. I was on the dance floor until midnight, then back to bed, slept until 4 AM and then got up to do the five-hour drive back to my hometown to be at work Monday morning. That hurt almost as much as the delicious, spicy pakoras ripping through my unaccustomed intestinal tract* the whole way back.

Thank Vishnu for clean restrooms at regular intervals all along the dreaded 401**.

*lubricated with predictably gut-rotting Tim Horton's coffee, a sentimental Canadian favourite
**and in one spot, 16-freaking-lanes wide

Friday, August 17, 2007

"Even a lima bean has to have a wet paper towel around it to make it grow."

I have to test if this works for banjos too.

I get by with a little help from my friends

[To decorate my latest post] I'm looking for a picture of superman as a boy lifting the truck
why is it so hard, when so many people note that it's an iconic image from 1978?
The Dude:
Ya, should be easy
The Dude:
I just googled, and got a bunch of photos of real superman lifting a car
The Dude:
actually, he's an action figure
I know
The Dude:
"baby superman truck" gives me this
you are the best googler
The Dude:
The Dude:
The Dude:
Ok, here's the best
this is all from baby superman truck?
The Dude:
The Dude:
google sux ass sometimes


Yes! This is the one I wanted!

Thanks Mr. Jonathan!

conversation with my osteopath

Me: I used to be really Spartan on canoe trips. I wouldn't pack coffee or booze or even too many sweets. I'd eat vegetarian, really healthy balanced meals. I'd paddle 25-30 km a day, including portages. Although it sounds harsh, it was really this very pleasant, simple, sort of purifying experience, and I'd come back about five pounds lighter, you know, rippling with lean muscle, and feel ready to lift a truck off a baby. But a while ago I was introduced to camping with meat, aged bourbon, wine, extravagant desserts.

Michael: And now you're the baby under the truck?

Me: Yes.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

talk to me, sweetums

Who is reading this thing? More importantly, who in Downers Grove Illinois is reading this thing?

Have I mentioned that I love comments? Let's make this a conversation. is not TV, likes your chatty little self and wants to hear from you.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

rolf my hot auric body

One of my first big jobs after university was working in a tall black glass office building at the corner of King and University in Toronto. (More on that some other time, perhaps if I'm ever feeling nostalgic for unrelenting frustration, being underpaid, coma-inducing water cooler talk, and having to wear nylons.)

Because of that job and a bad ergonomic set-up, I developed an RSI that pretty well pooched my right shoulder. You wouldn't think clicking a mouse all day could hurt so much, but believe you me, it can if you are doing it at the end of an extended arm on a mid-chest-height desk for eight hours at a time for months on end.

From other earlier more athletic antics, I also tend to have a tight right piriformis muscle which can make my hip ache (and then my lower back) when I do a lot of sports.

I like to be active and often feel limited by these asinine infirmities, so I've tried all kinds of things to fix them: yoga, tai chi, massage therapy, acupuncture, cranial-sacral therapy, lying with a tennis ball under my butt cheek, and even, yes, rolfing, which inspired my friend Blackbeltbarrister to write to me with the excellent subject line used for this post and which is only obliquely relevant to what I'm writing here.

But since I have used it in the headliner, I'll digress for a moment and explain. Rolfing is basically where they tear at your flesh and you scream inside and maybe hyperventilate a bit, and then you feel better after because you are no longer in excruciating flesh-tearing pain and all that oxygen from hyperventilating was a refreshing change from holding your breath all day because you hate your job.*

So after a trail run yesterday, a friend introduced me to her friend the massage therapist and 3rd year student osteopath who cured her sinus infection by manipulating her palate. Who cares if this is placebo or real? I'm in. Due to a last-minute cancellation, I got to see him this morning at 8 AM.

Verdict: osteopathy is blowing my mind. Dude zeroed right in on all the problem bits. Since the session, which went for an hour and a half and was very gentle but intense, I've been feeling my entire body realigning and shifting. Oh, and I've also wanted to pass out in a bucket of my own drool. He said that might happen, but it will pass.


* The most intense session is when they rolf your ass. I am not even kidding about this. YOUR ASS.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


Why do I eat things that make me feel like crap? Oh Fruit Gummies, you are soft and sweet and tangy, but you make me drowsy, bung up my bottom system, give me gas.

Toot toot! I am throwing you away now, and the bag is not near empty yet! That is because I am seething with regret at having ever given in to your squishy tangy sweetness in the first place! I would do something more violent to you, rain down some powerful retribution, but you have sapped all the freaking chi from my body and made me feel limp and boneless! Fuck you, Fruit Gummies! I lie on the floor and curse you with parched lips and a cracking voice that wails complaint in harmony with a gentle stutter of quiet farts!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

way better than "banjeroo"

Looking through old emails, I discovered a conversation between me and my brother where we agreed that he'd henceforth call me Buckshot LeFonque if I henceforth called him Hon-hon Kankwangle. ("Hon-hon" pronounced like a fine French cheese, not like a repeated first syllable of the word "honey". See clip below for the correct general sense.)

Banjeroo was a lazy, terrible choice of blog name. All just because I was feeling sentimental about my banjo. Why oh why didn't I go with B. LeFonque? Probably because I thought, at the time, that I'd do five intermittent posts and then forget about this blogging nonsense.

im in ur drivr seet steelin ur trux!!!1!!!!1!

Wilbur! Ruby! You kids have to remember to wear your seat belts next time!

picture=more words than I have time to type

I just updated the sushi party post with a picture to show you what I meant about the sushi rollers down the pants.

Also, have I mentioned recently that Matt Hooker rules?

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Kusawa Lake dinner, courtesy of Wild Kingdom

So as mentioned before, my sister and I drove and camped here, at Kusawa Lake:

On our way we had to stop and let these guys cross the road (about 100 elk):

We didn't let the dog out of the truck to go hunt one, but once we got to the campsite we were too busy cooking dinner and setting up the tent to notice that the dog was indulging in his now-fevered bloodlust, until he marched up to us proudly with this little thing held delicately in his jaws:

We've been told ruffed grouse are tastier, but spruce grouse aren't BAD:

Why, look at all the fruit it was eating! How can that make for anything but tasty, tasty meat?

The dog is impressed with his mistress' handiwork, considering all she had was her river knife, and nature's boner (don't tell me it should be "de-boner").

Surely Julia Child would have preferred we used butter:

But it was quite delicious cooked simply in olive oil, salt and pepper. (Yes, we gave some to the hunter.) Thanks, little grouse, and I hope the dog ended your life swiftly and mercifully.

The next day, we rewarded the hunter with a whitewater paddle, which he enjoyed in his usual regal manner:

Here's more of the pretty river:

I could post more pictures and I will, except that I don't want to blow your mind with the beauty by giving you too much at once. Plus, I've had a total of about 6 hours of sleep in the last 48 hours. My friend Mike tells me that after something like 72 hours of sleep deprivation, soldiers don't take orders anymore. You can even hold a gun to their head and they'll just gratefully take the bullet. I'm not that close, but I have got to put this body to bed now.


I can't tell you why, but I promise you, I have evidence that he is the coolest ever.

Thanks Matt!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

status report: brain melting, system failure imminent

So when I arrived at the office this morning straight from the cross-country redeye feeling like I'd been dragged through the cat's ass backward, I had the lingering otherworldly-feeling recollection that only six hours before I'd been having a pleasant late-night pint of Granville Island Pale Ale with my friend Aisha in the Vancouver airport, who happened to be on the same plane as me.

Only a few hours before that, I had been wolfing spaghetti at my brother's place,* and only an hour before that, I had been floating around with my sister, sister-in-law, good friend, and 10-month-old cute-tinskilicious niece in the Takhini Hot Springs. (We didn't put the baby in the hot-hot pool, just the warm one.**)

Today is terribly painful, exhaustion-wise and brain-thinking-wise, but as my friend B says, how defeatingly sleepy I am today will be forgotten in a few days, but hanging with the ladies, kissing water-wrinkled 10-month-old feet, and getting that soaked little munchkin to giggle is stuff I can get some mileage out of for some time.

I'll get some pics up soon.

* In Whitehorse you can arrive at the airport 20 minutes before your flight takes off, which is perfect for me - and well really - my entire family (except you, mom).

** No one wanted baby soup, although I am sure it would have been delicious.

Monday, August 06, 2007

I will go a hell of a long ways before you get me

In my sister's bathroom I found the November 2006 issue of Harper's, and therin I discovered mention of the New York City Museum of Complaint.

There are some good ones in there. I recommend you go straight to the slideshow.

This rant (a tad ominous and unhinged, but 1935 was surely more innocent than 2007?) is a favourite and so is this one.


nature's equivalents

Well I'm dismounting from the Whitehorse tomorrow night, heading back east. I'm so smart, I booked a redeye, and I'm going to be arriving in my hometown after four hours of "plane sleep"*, napping for about 15 minutes at my mom's where I left my car, and then heading into the office where I'll do a brisk day's work. That's going to be great!!!

Just wanted to share with you that last week when we were camping I said to my sister, "I'm just going to scoop this salsa out of the bowl with my finger," and she said "Sure. Fingers are nature's spatula."

A few nights later, camping at Kusuwa Lake, when we were removing the flesh from the bones of the thing that my sister's dog killed and we were about to cook and eat, I said, "Just use your fingers to bone this thing. Fingers are nature's boner."

HA HA HA oh god, don't you want to camp with us?

*not to be confused with real sleep