Thursday, November 29, 2007

dontcha wish your boyfriend was...

I love Handsome Gay Boyfriend. He just took me out for a delicious lunch and a generally incensed (but frequently darkly amusing) conversation about racism, religion and the absurdities of his workplace.

After, as he was getting out of my car he said, "That lip gloss is so good. I noticed it before and I almost bit your lip, and you just put some on again, and now I have to get out of the car or I'm going to bite your face."

Monday, November 26, 2007

a flower in a cup!

When I was out buying tea at the specialty shop on Thursday late afternoon, I noticed a high grade of Darjeeling, and simply had to buy a little of it out of great fondness for a certain charming British physicist I know, "Dr. Stone Cold" to his friends. Just about three years ago he wrote to me about the fine qualities of this particular variety, stating:

"A good English Breakfast is a perfectly splendid addition to anyone's tea repertoire, but really, for the ultimate in hot beverage action, you need to be looking at the Darjeeling leaf - the veritable champagne of teas. A delicate, magical scent of that goes beyond the senses."

To back up his assertions, he finished off with this quote from an illustrious authority on the matter :

"Darjeeling is truly a flower in a cup, delicately perfumed, exquisite flavour notes, so enormously satisfying, it makes me tent." - HRH, The Queen.

Just having a sip now...

Sunday, November 25, 2007

phone message

"Hey, it's your brother calling. Just thought that you'd be particularly interested to know that [my daughter]* just learned how to blink. Like, she learned how to blink on purpose. We actually captured a little bit of it on video and so we'll send it out soon. But it's pretty funny. Anyway. She doesn't really like it. [laughs] But she does it. I'm in crazy land but maybe we'll talk soon."


* i.e. My niece, who is extremely cute and is the most wide-eyed child who ever lived. She has never liked closing her eyes, because you know, even blinking means she might miss something.

Friday, November 23, 2007

like a trout to small to reach the front door handle

This post is going to be all over the place. Irrelevant subject line is from an absurd mis-hearing of a Paul Weller song. You can guess what the lyric is supposed to be if you want.

Last night a close friend of my brother and sister-in-law's was in town, so I tried to play good city host. We bought specialty tea at a place in the market, went for a bite, then drove to a climbing gym that he, a climbing enthusiast, wanted to check out. (Although I would have otherwise been keen, we just looked around because I haven't slept that well the last few nights and was feeling very tired, plus it was quite late.) Then we went to his hotel where we were going to sit in the hot tub and chat but it was broken, so we went for a swim in the pool and tried for 25 minutes or so to stand on a stack of kickboards underwater. We also wore Cookie Monster water wings some kid left behind. They made kind of nice slippers.

Not much else to say. I guess it's time for another edition of "books on the back of my toilet".

Since my specialty seems to be mixing the base (going potty) with the sublime (excellent reading material), this week we have:

A Good War is Hard to Find by David Griffith - I'm not Catholic but I'll dig a good spiritually-tinged cultural analysis of the pornography of war anytime.
City of Words by Alberto Manguel - pulls in a mix of things including the Epic of Gilgamesh, the Tower of Babel, Kafka, and Atanarjuat the Fast Runner. How could you not want to just rub yourself all over this book?*

*By "yourself", I mean your big throbbing brain, okay pervert?

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

role playing

Handsome Gay Boyfriend always comes up with good ideas. Maybe this is funny to me because I've never dated an asshole like this:

Handsome Gay Boyfriend: you can be the straight guy
and I'll be the girl
and we can play stereotypical gender roles


HGB: Want to see a movie tonight snookums?
(that's me being a girl)

Roo: uh, whatever (me being the straight boy)
actually, I have to tutor


Roo: shit

HGB: You have to drink with the guys

Roo: (back in character)
i'm seeing jimmy at g o'malleys
boys nite!!!!!!!

HGB: again? Why don't you guys just fuck and get it over with.

Roo: i don't wanna see any of ur chik flicks
as if!

HGB: I'm being a liberated women

Roo: ur bein a BITFCH

HGB: You know what.
I'm replacing you with Pedro
My vibrator. Yeah, you know the import I bought online from Tajikistan that's illegal here?
It's better than you anyway.

Roo: aw baby don't be that way

HGB: And, I'll go to the movies with my girls

Roo: come on u know I was jus joshin u

HGB: So lets see if Jimmy will let you do anal three nights a week and every second sunday after church.

Roo: baby I wuz kiddin!!!

HGB: ok I love you
Do you love me
Do you think I''m pretty?

Roo: you know I luv u and ur choclatte starfish
shur ur prettiest

HGB: Ok, I'll stay home and drink a little wine and watch TLC so that I'm loose for you when you're done with boys night
tee hee

Roo: oh baby, ur the best

HGB: No you are.
Thanks for not getting mad at me.

Roo: gril, I am gonna show u a thing or 2 2nite

HGB: Tee hee

Roo: u make me mad sometimes but stay pretty & I won't dump u

Monday, November 19, 2007

bad toast

Whoever last raised a glass with me and said "Here's mud in yer eye" was a little too effective. I did the last bit of yard work last night with my new quasi-roommate and with all the mud and sticks and leaves and grass and frozen boot-smashed jack-o-lantern* and dried raccoon poo flying around, something got in there.

Either it's still lodged between my eye lid and conjunctiva or it's long gone but left a scratch that continues to feel like a grain of sand gouging up tender places.

I think my current situation could partially have something to do with my ingenious method of filling those huge brown-paper yard waste bags for the city compost,** which involves turning them upside-down and clawing upward into them, whacking the walls with my gloved hands like a trapped miner, until the top of my head hits the bottom of the sack and the thing is opened. Then I wriggle out and fill the massive thing with leaves. If I'd take off the filthy gloves before, all that whacking wouldn't result in a shower of crap flying down from them into sensitive membranes. I confess though, I sort of like standing in the front yard with a huge bag over my head (and torso and thighs).

Anyway, how about next time we just say "cheers". (I'm also open to more interesting suggestions.)

* thank you Chris, Thomas, and free beer

** which are very stiff and folded in such a way that makes them difficult enough to open that there are inventions to help open them and then hold them open - will update post later if I find an example online

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

change the channel already

Roo: so, likely going to go to whitehorse for six weeks

Rik: kewl, when?

Roo: late nov
stay til mid-jan

Rik: nice and warm, then

Roo: warm and bright
if you count dusk light for four hours a day as bright
but at least you get aurora borealis

Rik: although i bet that gets old fast

Roo: yeah
it's so shitty to hang out in the takhini hot springs under aurora borealis and the starry night sky

Rik: it SOUNDS shitty
by week five you are probably "fucking aurora borealis, you glowing majestic piece of shit"
or similar

Roo: exactwally

You can't seriously expect the beauty of nature to hold my attention or elicit any rapt sense of wonder for very long. (I grew up on ADHD-inducing Sesame Street for god's sake.) Bah!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

I wanted Fantasia to win from the get-go

The third year of American Idol, I mysteriously and randomly stopped being a cranky hater of reality television (or whatever category AI is considered to be in) and watched it. I got religious about it, watched every show, developed emotional attachments to the contestants and their fates, talked about it, thought about it, and wished I could vote from here in Canada. I rode the wave all the way to the beach. What then? Well, Fantasia won and it was over. I never thought of it again and have missed all subsequent seasons.

Fantasia who?

Maybe it's because I'm occasionally ambivalent about blogging, or maybe it's that I've had an odd November, or maybe that once I started badly and couldn't do it "right" I lost momentum, but for whatever reason I'm just not digging into Nablopomo like I did last year.

I love the idea and think it's great so many people are doing it, but all I really want to do is go watch some more Professor Brothers. (I highly recommend both parts of Fliff Night.)

Monday, November 12, 2007

you don't know it, but you are full of stars

Last year (you know, the year where I did not NaBlow it and posted every day), I came across a lot of great blogs. And until proven wrong, and though I've never met these people in the flesh, I'm going with the probability that there are real humans writing those blogs.*

A lot of those blogs are ones I still visit a couple times a week (whether their authors know it or not), but two really stand out: Isoglossia (JDS and Magda, who I am ready to have over for dinner any time) and Matt Hooker of Kentucky Waterfall fame (who painted these amazing fighting trucks, and my favourite painting of Death dancing with song birds like Snow White).

It's not just that after discovering them through NaBloPoMo I started reading both their blogs regularly -- it's that I know they read my blog too, and (apparently) come back even when I go several days without a decent post, or weakly fall back on IM conversations for content.

It seems we also semi-regularly comment on each other's stuff. These inter-blog connections make for a wonderful, odd sort of conversation, and they've been going on for a whole year. It feels like the best thing about the internet. (Followed very very closely by Brad Neely's Professor Brothers on SuperDeluxe.)

So who did you find (last year or this year) and start reading regularly? Tell me about the magic.

*Thanks for raising this concern, JDS.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

best compliment ever

"You could invite people over for shit pie and kicks in the ass and it would still be fun somehow."

Friday, November 09, 2007

once concession for the hens destined for slaughter

Regular readers will know how much I love the Dawson City Music Fest up in the Yukon every summer. A few years ago Christine Fellows played and knocked all our sock/sandal combos off.*

She just came out with a new album and there's one song I'm playing obsessively. Give it a go: The Spinster's Almanac

This doesn't count as today's post, by the way.

* I don't actually wear socks with sandals (not since the mandatory Birks/socks phase in university) but have been known to consort with those who do.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

I heart Gantt chearts

Second day on the job (earlier this week), I got to nerd out and gross out at the same time:

Me: I found a new FREE tool that we can use to track projects. It does everything we need it to do. MS Project can blow me!

New Awesome Boss:

Me: Really, MS Project can blow ALL of us.

I'll pass.
But tell Brendan he can have mine.

I'll let him know.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

no time. clock ticking.

So what I'll do is post something about posting something to get in before the midnight deadline, and then I'll come back and revise it into the perfectly crafted flash non-fiction you're so accustomed to reading on this site. RIGHT? HUH?



OK, so instead of thinking about what to write about my new job, my quirky and fun new coworkers, etc... I went and read Tracie Masek's Emotional Toothpaste and found this:


I have the same rating, because I have used the word "assholes".

I guess talking about poo isn't R-rated, although "Anonymous" thinks "it sicK>."

Since I'm now in that generally scatological frame of mind, my cousin recently informed me that my brother informed HIM that as a frequently flatulent vegetarian he often goes into another room to emit a "test fart" to make sure that what he's about to off-gas in the presence of others isn't too offensive. TEST FART.

OK, off to bed. My work here is done.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

if music be the food of getting things done, play on!

Two songs I'm listening to obsessively while I work right now:

Chad VanGaalen's Burn 2 Ash - go have a listen.

Andrew Bird's Skin - which you can have a snip of a listen to here. It's the instrumental version of this song:

If anyone knows of a link to a streaming version of the song, lemme know so I can share.

Oh, and also the new Radiohead, which everyone is raving about. I could listen to Reckoner again and again. In fact, I do.

The new Arcade Fire is pretty good too.

My friend GWMS said he doesn't like to listen to music very much any more because it mediates and moderates his emotional landscape too much (i.e precisely why everyone else listens to music). He has narrowed his acceptable choices down to 70s heavy metal and Bach. "I have a hard time with anyone my own age or thereabouts telling me how I should feel. Bach can tell me how I should feel because he's old and long-dead."

Monday, November 05, 2007

NaBlo(wn) it

NaBloPoMo. Last year I did it. Didn't miss a day. This year I signed up pretty early, but this is my first post and it's already November 5. Yup, I've nablown it.

How it happened (if you care):

Nov 1 - up late finishing a contract; failed to post before midnight, cursed self, shook fists impotently at the heavens

Nov 2 - very busy day of long-delayed now urgent errands, then picked up friend at airport arriving here from Whitehorse, picked up two more friends, bourbon was poured, dinner was eaten, wine was poured, more bourbon was poured, unruly and progressively more bewildering game of Settlers of Catan, blonde wigs, cookies tossed (literally, dark chocolate Le Petit Ecolier strewn across the table), bed at 4, nablopowhuuuuuuut?

Nov 3 - have mercy, watched Jesus Camp on couch with pals, wept for America and those poor kids

Nov 4 - too depressed about missing first three days entirely, helped friend clean stove top with Q-tips while yapping together about interesting things, helped ESL friend with homework, went for delicious sushi, thought about tackling yesterday's dishes in sink

Nov 5 - started new job where my office is in the sunlit attic of a renovated and gorgeous old farmhouse surrounded by forests and fields, friends (now also coworkers) threw me a welcome lunch with delicious sandwiches and salad and Jim Beam and homemade pie, fell to knees in gratitude for the sweetness of life