August 31, 2010

Guest Blogging in the UK...

While my blogtastic friend Anne is hiding out ordering room service in the penthouse of a five-star hotel --- or as she claims, "camping" --- she asked me to guest blog over at her place.

Check out my wise and well-researched piece @

August 30, 2010

Emmy Schmemmy...

Uh, why do I watch award shows again? Yes, there are some fun parts but why watch something where they fit a solid 45 minutes of entertainment into a 3-hour show?

Don't get me wrong, am I no snob or artsy wannabe, I watch TV, hell I love TV. Even crappy TV. Still, people, please ban everyone named Gosselin from television already, for the love of god. Make it stop!

Award shows are criticized for being out of touch with what people watch and what is really good. True?

What I watch: The Good Wife, Glee, Bones, Cougar Town, 30 Rock, Desperate Housewives, Big Bang Theory, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Castle, and until its crapfest season last year, Brothers and Sisters.

What won: Modern Family, The Good Wife, SNL, Big Bang Theory, Breaking Bad, Nurse Jackie, Top Chef, The Tony Awards, Temple Grandin, You Don't Know Jack.

Apparently I don't know jack - what the hell are some of these shows?

Parts of the Schmemmy's worked: the opening Glee number, Jimmy Fallon hosting, George Clooney's funny cameo in the Modern Family montage, Ricky Gervais, and the very dry voiceovers ("Emmy winner Edie Falco is descended form Swedish and Italian parents, so I guess she grew up in a house where everyone was making meatballs").

What annoyed me: awkward scripted dialogue among co-presenters, endless plugs for new shows I've never heard of (Mr Sunshine? What the hell is that?), Jimmy Fallon singing, gay jokes, Kate Gosselin, all the twitter quotes, the same stupid Rogers commercials over and over (a Canada delight), Jimmy Fallon playing rock star, more Jimmy Fallon singing.

So yes last night I watched the Schmemmy's. I watched the whole damn thing. While reading my book, writing this blog, reading other blogs, cuddling with the dogs. And wondering why the hell I watch award shows.

After the Schmemmy's I surfed over to Out TV and watched back-to-back episodes of the cheesy British soap Mile High, where the flight attendants/strippers banded together and supported an airline union protest by literally taking the shirts off their backs. Now that is award-winning television...

August 28, 2010

My evening in the emergency room (cuz I'm an idiot)...

I am patient number 021141510/001 at the Royal Alex hospital right here in Edmonton. Or at least I was a 10.30 last night --- hey, they don't reuse those numbers, do they?

Why was I at the emergency room? Well, it involved lube and my wedding ring...

A few weeks ago, I had a swollen knuckle and wound up changing my wedding ring to the other hand because it was too painful to take on and off. After a week or so, finger back to normal, wedding ring back on wedding ring finger, ooh blah dee, ooh blah dah, life goes on.

Thursday that knuckle was swollen a bit again, looking like I had hit it or jammed it in the door or something. Yes, again. What kind of idiot does that twice? My kind of idiot, apparently.

Yesterday it was sore, and then last night, when K's brother and sister-in-law were over for dinner, I could not get my ring off and my finger was really starting to ache. So later in the evening I asked for help to get my ring off my finger (hey, pull my finger...).

As none of my dinner companions is a medical doctor or a magical wizard, they had no further knowledge than I did, so we did what the medically curious have been doing since the dawn of time: googled "I cannot get my wedding band off". And got like 37 thousand hits, including lists, videos, Australian nurses, people disagreeing with each other, lots of information about weight gain during pregnancy, pictures of some pretty nasty jammed fingers, and some whackjob blaming the aliens.

The suggestions ranged from "pull harder" to having a surgeon cut the ring off, and hope to save your finger.

We tried moistening the ring and finger to slide it off, with soap, hand lotion, lube. We tried taping my fingers and cutting off circulation to make the finger and knuckle smaller. We tried some weird origami thing with dental floss to thread it off. That one took three people and hurt like hell. And didn't work.

After all this my knuckle was swollen like a painful pineapple. And I had gone from casually wondering what happened to freaking out that some third world medic was going to have to amputate my finger. And maybe a leg or two.

So off to the emergency room we went, at 10.30 on a Friday night.

First discovery -- "off to the emergency room" is easier said than done. We parked on the street near the well-lit main entrance, which was closed. Apparently it's a food court. We then wandered hospital building to hospital building until we found the non-lit emergency sign and went in.

No big line-up, then a friendly welcome by the triage nurse, then the slowest paperwork clerk ever, like Carol Burnett as Mrs. Wiggins only slower and not funny. We grew visibly older as she typed key by key by key. Aaaaargh!

After a quick five minutes in the waiting room, called in by cute gay doctor, who calls over other cute gay doctor, who examine my finger, warn me about the forthcoming pain, oil me up, and get to work. They slowly got it off. It hurt like hell. I was brave and solemn. Except for the whining, sweating, whimpering, and thinking I was gonna pass out. Yep, brave and solemn.

Their advice? The ring may be too small, and looks like I jammed or banged it pretty badly. So be less of a douche and start paying attention to what the hell I am doing with my finger...

August 27, 2010

Oh crap, another day shot to hell...

After coming home very late Wednesday night, Thursday was my one day off this week, and I had plans. Not world-changing Angelina Jolie adopt-an-orphan-visit-war-zone plans, but plans...

The list in my head before day started:
1- take Alfie to camp
2- spend quality time with Quinn, who is home from camp this week as not feeling 100%
3- run or gym
4- supermarket
5- blog
6- vacuum
7- call B, a friend have not connected with all summer
8- scoop poop in the back yard (go ahead, envy my glamorous life)
9- return call from G, a friend have been playing telephone tag with
10- call about our "missing" kitchen chairs
11- finish off the book I have been dragging around with me (Stephen King's On Writing)
12- go through mail from past three days and pay bills
13- meet K at the new house after he finishes work, for walk-thru's with electrician and security people
14- unpack from trip this week, do laundry
15- cook dinner

Hey, that list is just too damn long, right? I totally absolutely agree. Here's what I actually did:
1- nap
2- start on guest room
3- play online
4- play with dogs
5- nap with dogs
6- vacuum high-traffic areas
7- leisurely turn up at new house 90 seconds early

Hmmmm, does that count as seven things off my list?

August 25, 2010

Stupid Things That Annoy The Crap Out Of Me, Special Travel Edition...

This was supposed to be an easy one, a single flight for a three-day business trip, a direct flight that I do every couple of months -- pack Kindle for reading, bring ear buds in case there is a decent movie to watch, buy overpriced water and diet coke at the airport because they are gonna ignore you when flying in the cheap seats.

So what could be annoying about something that is pretty much a semi-regular routine? Hmmm...

1- When boarding the plane, you have to show ID except if you under 18. And you prove that how, if ID not required? We are trusting teens with the honour system now?

2- Jerkwads who carry on waaay more baggage than they should. The restriction is two small items, buddy, not three huge hockey bags. I think that last one may have a corpse in it, by the way.

3-Flight attendants not in uniform. I DON'T EFFING KNOW YOU WORK HERE! You, the glum faced young woman blocking my seat, is this your job?

4- Jerk beside me who keeps asking me for headphones over and over. Already told you I brought these from home. Do I look like Radio Shack? Or do you think we are gonna share this pair?

5- Annoying nameless airline - okay, Air Canada, - who boasts you can watch the entertainment system gate to gate, then has me sit through all the ads and sponsor crap, only to restart the system and have me sit through all the ads and sponsor crap again. Aaaargh!

6- Commercials for accountants who are trying to brand the career as cool by showing us one hip young CMA. One. They found one.

7- Jerkwad passengers who ignore announcements. Hey Mr Seat 15A, they called you five times to upgrade you to first class. Don't want the seat? I'll take it, thank you very much.

8- Bowling teams who wear neon blue shirts and travel in packs.

9- The programmer who selects episodes 14 and 16 of Two and a Half Men to feature on the plane. Episode 14 was part one of a two-parter, buddy. I was emotionally invested...

10- Waiting 34 minutes --- and yes I timed it --- at the carousel for my luggage. What, did you take our bags on a guided tour of the city in the meantime? Maybe the dude carrying on everything he owns wasn't so wrong after all...

August 24, 2010

Am I too plugged in...?

While packing for a quickie 3-day business trip this week, I pulled together my suits and ties and art gallery cuff links and polka dot socks, and then got to the important stuff I needed to take with me, my gizmos and gadgets.

And while organizing my crap to pack, a giant light bulb appeared above my head, more of a thought bubble really, with this line of thought:

How the hell many gadgets and gizmos do I effing need? Am I too wired? Too intravenously online? Too hooked on the buzz of connecting with people through high speed wireless connections?

What I brought with me:
1- laptop and cord
2- blackberry and charger (work)
3- iPhone and charger (mine)
4- iPod and charger (for running)
5- Kindle and charger
6- electric razor and batteries.
6.5- and I forgot the digital camera I was supposed to bring for work to take pictures of display set-ups (oops...).

I mean, for someone who doesn't travel with sex toys, this seems like a lot, doesn't it?

And this list doesn't included the GPS in my car, which I drove to the airport.

Now I am not claiming to travel light --- am Jewish and gay, people --- but I have to wonder how typical this is. Are we too wired for our own good? Are we addicted to technology? Can we be entertained without a modem? Are we just hooked on toys or the next new thing whatever it is? Uh, is it just me?

I think it's probably not just me. We probably are too wired. Ah, screw it, I still want, need, lust for an iPad. Y'know, boys and their toys...

August 22, 2010

Mr Bean is funny, Chris Rock isn't, and other things I learned this week...

Life is an ongoing education, as they say... and no I dunno who the hell "they" are... so here is what I learned this week:

1- I would be much more successful on the teen tournament series of Jeopardy than in the regular brainiac version.

2- Mr. Bean's Vacation was on TV this week, and I watched it yet again, laughing out loud as I sat with the dogs in the basement. Apparently I am in the minority because I think Mr Bean is effing hysterical? You people are wrong, I am right, he is effing hysterical.

3- The new men's fragrance by Chanel, Bleu, is sexy as hell.

4- There is a catapult-like gizmo called an avalancher used to launch rockets towards mountains that are at risk of an avalanche, in order to start a controlled/planned smaller avalanche before there is a natural more dangerous avalanche. Hmmm, what could go wrong with this plan?

5- "Releasing the hounds" is farting.

6- Jaime Foxx's birth name is Eric Bishop.

7-It aint's easy being a rentboy. Okay, I didn't actually learn that, I read that online. Still, good to know.

8- 150 Orthodox Rabbis have signed a statement calling for the acceptance of gay men and women into Conservative synagogues. Most recent to sign on? Three rabbis from Shaar Hashomayim in Montreal, the synagogue where I went as a kid and where I had my Bar Mitzvah. This is big big big steps forward for that culture!

9- Chris Rock makes crappy movies, most recently his remake of Death At A Funeral. Prior to that, his remake of Heaven Can Wait. And some piece of dreck called I Think I Love My Wife.

10- The View's blonde right-winger Elisabeth Hasselbeck supports marriage equality and a woman's right to choose. Shocked the hell out of me, and made me hate her a little bit less. Not the same for Sherri Shepherd. She is still an airhead....

August 20, 2010

Chrismukah comes early to Golden Girls fans...

Come this holiday season, all I want is this...

The upcoming Golden Girls box set: all seven seasons on 21 discs, with extras ranging from a Joan Rivers fashion commentary to audio commentaries by the "girls" on select episodes, and a retrospective at the Museum of Television and Radio, all packaged in what looks like one of Sophia's handbags.

It comes out this November, and is all I want! Not that I would, uh, say no to an iPad, or something from Tumi, or another puppy....

August 19, 2010

Stupid Things That Annoy The Crap Out Of Me, Chapter 5...

Is it good or bad that we never seem to run out of stupid stuff from stupid people? Here is what is bugging me now...

1- The History Channel's obsession with Hitler. This week's treasure was High Hitler (ooh, clever pun on Heil Hitler) about the Fuhrer's drug use. Yes history is vital, I majored in history for chrissake, still, Hitler's pill count?

2- Levi Johnson. I feel dirty just writing your name here. You want to be an actor? A reality-TV star? A Palin in-law? A nude model? Now you want to run for mayor of Wasilla? What the hell is your talent, besides random sperm dissemination, which by the way we can all effing do. Shut up and go away forever.

3- Superbitch Kerrie on Party Mamas; for her daughter's 14th birthday she spent $65k on a party her daughter didn't want. The party included a hideous bridal cake her daughter hated. A good role model of values? Ha! Tis wingnut describes herself as the ultimate stage mom, and "would give up food before she gave up Botox."

4- Nasty right wing politicians who claim illegal immigrants are sneaking in to the US to have "anchor babies" so they won't be deported. Yep, sleeper cell kids. Uh-huh. Hate immigrants much? As my secret husband Jon Stewart says, you know you are in trouble when someone starts with "I know it's hard to be tough on babies BUT..."

5- Bruce Jenner's face. What, you think Joan Rivers took it too easy with the plastic surgery?

6- President Obama playing basketball in front of the media. I still kind of like you, stop trying to be an MTV star and do important stuff.

7- Dogs who randomly change the TV channel by falling asleep on the TV remote and shifting as they dream.

8- Those douchebag marketers opening the new Pop Tart store in Times Square, featuring future classics like Elvis Pop Tarts and Sushi Pop Tarts. It is sick and wrong. And yes I will go and spend hard-earned money. Bastards.

9- When Microsoft Word autocorrects what I am writing to something that is not correct, not relevant and not what I was trying to say. You're not effing helping me!

10- The bitter old bag -- sorry -- youth-impaired, happiness-impaired bag - who cut ahead of me in line at the checkout and then paid with a cheque. A cheque? Is this 1974? And why do you move at the pace of an arthritic caterpillar EXCEPT when you are cutting in ahead of me? Aaaaargh!

11- Dr Laura being a racist. Actually the fact that people are shocked, SHOCKED, that she is a racist. This woman, who got her "Dr" in something like phys ed or basket weaving, has called gays deviants and predators, and thinks women should be barefoot and pregnant. So you are surprised she is a racist? Calling Mel Gibson...

12- Penny-pinching doctors too cheap to buy current magazines. I was in my chiropractor's office this week and the best I could find was "O" The Oprah Magazine from November 2006. Yes, I was reading the Oprah magazine. I was there, it was there. Anyhow, back to the cheapskate doctor: I am paying you $46 for nine minutes of your time, spring for an effing subscription! Oh, and Dr. Phil thinks we are all going to have a meaningful 2006 Christmas as long as we... whatever, I didn't actually read the Dr Phil blather. He annoys me too....

August 17, 2010

A bloggy birthday: leave a comment, save the world...

This blog is one year old today...
thanks so much for reading,
and stay tuned for more!

To thank all of you for reading, and participating with your comments, for every comment attached to this post today and tomorrow (Aug 17 and 18), I will donate $1 to Doctors Without Borders' Emergency Relief Fund.

For every new follower I will donate $2 to Doctors Without Borders.

Geez, I'm asking for money. And paying for it now. Does that make me a whore? Or a john? My grandfather would be so proud!

C'mon, show the love and leave a comment...
it's time to raid Alfie's piggy bank!

August 16, 2010

Eat, Pray, Love, Get Crappy Service In A Crappy Theatre...

I worked all day yesterday, and K worked at home accomplishing a ton of stuff pre-move --- I am, uh, a smidge behind on my contribution there --- so we decided to head out last night.

So we saw Eat Pray Love at our local theatre, the place closest to us in Westmount Centre, a nearby mall. This was the 7.20 show on a Sunday, so not busy, when most people are home with their families watching Jersey Shore or whatever crap is on TV.

My beef? This cost us 42 bucks. So $12 each for the flick, then as my turnaround post-work was quick we also got food - one of those meal deals with a big popcorn, two sodas, a candy bar. Okay, technically speaking not a meal. Whatever.

That would be ok, as all our choice so far, until you get to the lame-o idea at this theatre to sell tickets at the snack bar. So if you are buying tickets, and or food, you stand in the same snake-like disorganized line, waiting, and waiting. No quick entry if you just want tickets.

Then they put one girl - ONE - to handle everyone. I felt bad for her, she looked about 16 and overwhelmed. Sweet, trying, set up to fail by her employer. The morons.

We waited while the dithering group of women in front of us each paid for their own ticket, each choosing their own candy and drink, sloooowly. I grew older waiting. The poor couple behind us just wanted tickets to their flick and waited patiently, forever, as did the folks behind them.

Who thinks up this crap system to annoy their clients? I am paying 42 bucks here, hire more people. My guess is you are paying them minimum wage anyway. Popcorn has some profit doesn't it? Costs me twelve cents at home, eight bucks here.

Plus the men's room was gross. Ick. Barf. I did get on my receipt a blurb and link to their customer service survey website. And yes I filled it out. You betcha. Think I will hear back from them?

As for the flick? I liked it, though not as much as loved the book. K wasn't crazy about it, he had liked though not loved the book. Worth seeing for the breathtakingly beautiful places and the terrific music. And Julia Roberts. And the food porn. Ooh, the food porn... go to a different theater though...

August 14, 2010

The Tide is High... Blondie live, live, live!

I have an entertainment addiction - books, movies, music, gadgets, concerts, opera, dance, all of it. It's like crack to me. I need constant stimulation (no, not in that way, you pervs).

While my tastes are eclectic, there is a definite 80s thing going on. My patient husband sits through TV shows, movies, and concerts he would not otherwise watch. He is a great sport about it, with the occasional raised eyebrow, and does begrudgingly admit to liking the Fleetwood Mac and Styx concerts more than he expected to. Yes, Styx.

And tonight was the Blondie concert!

The show started with blasting music, strobing lights, and icon Debbie Harry coming out in a tutu and jean jacket singing some damn thumping song I had never heard of. This and several other tracks performed are from the upcoming album Panic of Girls. So after plugging that for a bit, and taking off her glitter shades and turning on the personality, charming the audience, we got the hits - Atomic, Call Me, Maria, Hanging on the Telephone, Heart of Glass, an extended funky Rapture, an amazing interactive calypso The Tide is High, a blasting One Way or Another.

As an encore? A guitars-blazing version of My Heart Will Go On. Yes, really. And screw you Celine Dion, they totally nailed it.

The band is strong. Harry is amazing, with her voice as powerful as ever, her big blond hair (I am guessing ordered online) whipping around, her enthusiasm high.

I tend to view everything as art. Sometimes bad art, but still art. And this evening was art - the music I love, the 65-year-old rock chick still working it with sass, the killer drums and guitars, the Bjork-worthy costume, the audience of trendoids and teens and geeks and seniors and mullets and large men swilling beer and groups of girlfriends with animal print tank tops and self-supporting 80s hair. Art.

If Blondie comes your way, catch them!

Next up for me is a Reba concert in October. Love her, this will be third time live. My husband is happy to be off the hook for that one. I am going with a friend, whose husband bought his ticket for his birthday. We went last time also. It is a surprise for him. Oops, I let it out...guess this will tell me if he reads this blog...

August 13, 2010

Hart to Hart, Fantasy Island, The Golden Girls...

We expanded our cable TV package a couple of months ago, and now have dozens more channels, lots of house and garden stuff, cable music, more news and faux news, time shift on the network stuff, and way more.

We get b-grade science fiction stuff and z-grade movies nobody has every heard of. And for some wonky reason we get The View five times a day. Yes, five times. I counted. Bite me, Sherri Shepherd.

There is tons of new stuff for us to watch. And yet once you push through the summer reruns, biographies of people such as Paula Abdul (uh...why?) and repeats of Extreme Makeover Home Edition, so much of it is crap. Total crap.

So in trying to avoid the crap fests, there are two stations new to us that I find myself watching a lot - Deja View and TV Land. So yes that means I am watching serious reruns of "classic" TV. There is some dreck I am not going to readily admit to (that's you, Facts of Life), and some stuff I wish had held up better (Who's The Boss), then there are these five shows I am watching and watching and watching:

Golden Girls: Instant classic, loved it then, love it now. Dorothy is my role model. Rose: "Can I ask a dumb question?" Dorothy: "Better than anyone I know".

All in the Family: This was not one I watched when it was first on, as was on after my bedtime. Almost forty years later this is still bold brave television tackling issues like racism and women's rights, and it's funny as hell --- I cringe and laugh at the stuff Archie Bunker says, from words like "Chink" to jokes about Jews and Nixon and VD.

Maude: Another one I didn't watch in its prime. Yes, cuz I am that young (that's my story). Maude's strength and sass will make you laugh and cheer. "God'll get you for that, Walter."

Fantasy Island - Darker than I remembered, this is trying to be more than The Love Boat on a tacky Gilligan's Island set. Some bold topics on people trying to escape their past, the dark side of fame, the cost of selling your soul for money. Unfortunately that good stuff is undone by cheesy writing and crappy acting. Some shows age well; this is not one of those shows.

Hart to Hart: My new old favourite. The glamorous rich couple solving mysteries as a hobby works because the actors are charming, the characters are in love, and even when the weekly plots blow, the show is still fun to watch. And their house is awesome. And don't cha love the pic above? Freeway the dog reminds me of you know who...

August 10, 2010

I am the frigging Wizard of Oz...

While waiting for the furniture delivery dudes, I took one of those lame brilliant quizzes on facebook, Which Wizard of Oz Character Are You?

It works the usual way, where you answer a bunch of quick questions: yes I like small fluffy dogs, yes I think life is complicated, yes I daydream, yes I like the movie Steel Magnolias, yes I like the colour green, and so on. So which Wizard of Oz character am I?

I am the all-powerful Wizard of Oz.

Hey, first reaction is I can sure live with that. Maybe one of the other characters would be more fun, especially as in the end the Wizard was all talk, but this is sure better than being one of those weird flying monkeys. Or a witch who is crushed by a house.

Then the explanation of my Wizard personality profile pops up:
You have multiple skills and personalities. You tend to take on more responsibility than you should. You are creative, but bordering on being full of shit.

Rat bastards. Wizard my ass...

Fave App... Steakhouse or Gay Bar?

Yeppers, I luuuv my iPhone. And not especially because of the phone part, which is fine, I just don't use it that much as a phone.

I use it to text, take notes, shoot pics of the dogs, play games, surf the web, google stuff, read the Huffington Post, scan facebook, etch-a-sketch, read blogs, find my lost car, pop imaginary bubble wrap, and a whole bunch of other vitally important crap. Ok, I occasionally waste time a little time on the iPhone.

My favourite new time-waster app on my iPhone is Steakhouse or Gay Bar. Sounds deep, huh? Well, surprise, it's not! The beginning to the end of this game: the app gives you a name, and you have to guess whether that place is a steakhouse or gay bar. Yep, that is it. Waste that time away!

Wanna play? Here you go, try these:
- Nik's West: steakhouse or gay bar?
- Switch: steakhouse or gay bar?
- Village Supper Club: steakhouse or gay bar?
- Hole in the Wall: steakhouse or gay bar?
- The Abbey: steakhouse or gay bar?
- Cut: steakhouse or gay bar?
- Hind Quarter: steakhouse or gay bar?
- Over-Lubricated Rib Eye Manhole: steakhouse or gay bar?

Here are your answers:
- Niki's West: steakhouse
- Switch: steakhouse
- Village Supper Club: gar bar
- Hole in the Wall: Steakhouse
- The Abbey: gay bar (hmm, fetish much ?)
- Cut: steakhouse (ooh, but the possibilities...)
- Hind Quarter: steakhouse (no comment, too easy)
- Over-Lubricated Rib Eye Manhole: okay, I totally made this one up. And I think it's brilliant. It could work for either, or both!

When I was university age in Montreal and coming out and going out, the bar was The Garage, and later in Toronto there was Colby's and Woodys and Crews... looks like names have come a long way since then...

August 8, 2010

Stupid things that annoy the crap out of me, part four

Sometimes life is amazing. And sometimes it blows chunks of smelly moist crap. And sometimes even when life is great, there are those stupid whiny moronic things and people and comments who annoy the crap out of me...

1- Supermarkets who screw us over with mislabelling. I just saw this expose on CBC about Canadian supermarkets mislabelling fresh fish and substituting cheaper fish or endangered - yes, endangered- fish for what is supposed to be in there. Smug bastards. I know I am getting screwed somehow.

2- The President's Choice ice cream personality test at I am a banana split? Really? Because I am "a treat to be around"? Blech. I am no frigging treat. Could be worse, I guess you could have said I am something sickening sweet like bubblegum flavoured.

3- Mel Gibson. For sooo many reasons...

4- Andrew Giuliani, son of former mayor Rudolph Giuliani. And nope, I don't know him either. He annoys me because he is a jerkwad example of stupid trivial lawsuits. This douchebag goes to Duke university, where he was cut from the golf team. SO HE SUED THE UNIVERSITY.

5- That Slap Chop infommercial guy. Stop yelling!

6- Tae Kwon Do monkeys who attack their trainers (yes really, I don't make this shit up).

7- Dogs who bark at wind. And vacuums. And people walking by on the street. Not that I am naming names...

8- Gay activist Larry Kramer, who this week publicly trashed his former friend Barbra Streisand. Shape up, dude... gay men do not trash a diva!

9- Lindsay Lohan. At a certain age, and you are there, babe, bad parenting and teenage stupidity expire as excuses. Shut up and go away forever.

10- Guys with mullets and rat tails wearing wife beaters who smoke cigarettes while driving their red pick-up trucks. There's like 18 things wrong with this, and this was my view on the way home the other day...

11- Smally furry dogs who empty 15 toys out of the toybox (yes, he has a toybox) and spread them all over the floor to then choose one to play with, abandoning the others spread out everywhere; who trained you anyhow?

12- People who point at their wrist while asking for the time. I know where my watch is, jerkwad, where the hell is yours? Do I point at my crotch when I ask where the bathroom is?

August 7, 2010

Here's A Fantastic Summer Read... and two mediocre ones...

With some vacation time and travel time this summer, I have been catching up on some good old fashioned reading. And my 'good old fashioned reading' I mean super fast high-tech downloads of books to my Kindle, which I love obsessively.

The best of the bunch is a book I had never heard of before, by a guy I had never heard of. The book is One Day by David Nicholls, and its premise could be gimmicky: the book traces the 20-year relationship of Emma and Dexter by checking in with them on July 15 every year, starting when they graduate university. What starts as a one-night stand becomes a flirtatious friendship between the entitled rich boy and the brainy bohemian girl. Though this is a fast summer read, it is smart and funny and touching, with great humour and great insight about your 20s to 30s to 40s. And sneaking in there beneath the comedy is a stealth tearjerker - these crazy kids are perfect for each other and yet cannot get together. I laughed and yes I welled up with a tear or two. Read it!

You probably know Samantha Bee from her very funny bits on The Daily Show. She is smart and funny and foul-mouthed and, yes, proudly Canadian. This collection of essays runs the gamut from hysterical (her part-time job in a frame store) to just weird (her teenage crush on Jesus). There is no dish on The Daily Show, there are stories on growing up in a family with 'a long history of divorce', having her own apartment at age seven (really?), and early failed romantic and career adventures. In this disjointed collection, some stories are funny, some are just awkward. Bee is charming through all of it. Worth reading if you are already a fan.

Insignificant Others author Stephen McCauley is a smart quick gay dude. I love his books, which are modern gay comedies of manners, mostly because I identify with his characters. Except this time. The writing here is bang on like always, getting into the lives of gay men in a big city dealing with family, career, fidelity, money, and love. The problem is, all these characters are just unlikeable. Lead character Richard Rossi is dismayed to learn that his partner has an insignificant other, while he himself is struggling with a mid-life crisis and juggling his own part-time lover. Really, people, this is how you spend your time? His problems are both ridiculous and self-induced. Sure, this book has its very funny moments, but it's not great. From this author, try Alternatives to Sex or The Object of My Affection.

Okay back to my Kindle now... what should I read next?

August 5, 2010

Driving With Pringles And Other Stuff I Learned This Week...

While this has been a pretty unremarkable week in many ways, when you dig really deep, there are things to learn in our everyday lives...

1- Dogs really are walking garburators, as evidenced by when Alfie happily ate white asparagus for the first time. And dirt in the yard. And yes likely poop, and who the hell knows what else.

2- For healthy eating while driving, a can of jalapeno Pringles fits perfectly into a Toyota Solara cup holder, now to be known as a Pringles Holder. You're welcome.

3- A Single Man didn't live up to the hype.

4- Colin Firth is stalking me. He was everywhere I was; we watched or stumbled across A Single Man, Love Actually, Shakespeare in Love all in two days. And he was on the radio. Yep, he wants me.

5- Jon Stewart looks hot with his new beard.

6- The toilet on a space shuttle has a problem with what NASA calls 'escapees' which is poop that gets away in zero gravity. The toilet has a rearview mirror so the toilet user can watch for this, as he or she is responsible for chasing the runaway turd down.

7- Chelsea Clinton married some Jewish dude (yee ha) in a big fancy wedding which likely cost millions of dollars. Haters did their hate thing, forgetting the whole Rush Limbaugh multi-million dollar fourth wedding thing.

8-When dozens of fruit flies invade your kitchen, a container filled with the potent mix of dishwashing detergent, water, and apple cider vinegar will bait and kill them.

9- When you decide you want a two-sided red leather sofa for your new home, and go furniture store to furniture store asking for one, 9 of 10 people will look at you with a stunned blank look, either a What the hell is that you morons, or How high are you really? Worry not, once you find the right place, you can order one in. And it will seriously rock. And cost a bundle.

10- Former President George W Bush has written his first book and will start his promotional tour on the Today show. When he has read his first book, he will appear on Good Morning America.

August 2, 2010


alfred lives here will celebrate is first birthday in two weeks... woo hoo, where's that damn cake?

So as someone who is rarely short of an opinion, there are tons of things for me to spout off about. And I have --- about news, books, music, our big gay wedding, Hitler building our new house, things that annoy the crap out of me, idiots, homophobes, bad drivers, good movies, the world's cutest dog, and more.

As I have worked through this first year journey, there are some things that by choice or by chance have not made it in to the blog. So in a spirit of hey, what the fuck, here are seven of them:

1- I ate vegemite and lived to tell the tale: Yep, I tried it, when our friend Karen was here from Australia for our wedding, and was told that this is a love it or hate it kind of thing. Karen loves it, and yes carries it with her around the world. My husband hates it. First impression? Smells like tar. Taste impression? Meh. Take it or leave it. I wish I had loved or hated it, but frankly just didn't care.

2- Pat Benatar's autobiography: I was soooo eager to read this. I love Pat Benatar! Love her! But although book was interesting, it didn't wow me. A good primer on sexism in the music industry, I didn't feel I got to know the real Benatar. And the book pales beside Belinda Carlisle's dishier Lips Unsealed.

3- My family: I guess it's true what they say, all families are dysfunctional. Some bloggers are so great with writing and sharing about their families' twists and turns. I avoid dealing with them, in writing and yes sometimes in life. My learning over the past year is that weddings bring out the best and worst in people, maybe more a same-sex wedding where there is less ritual and less protocol. And unfortunately more homophobia. The upside is you also see who is amazing and who loves you.

4- Seeing Shirley MacLaine live: In June we flew to Seattle to see the Oscar winner give a talk about life the universe and everything. K is a huge fan and well read on her, I am open minded (sort of). The outcome? She is a smart, sassy, fantastic speaker. And I think we expected more, to be surprised or challenged, whereas the speech was more a summary of her beliefs. Interesting, not a mind-whack.

5- Local, provincial, and national Canadian politics: Yes, these things are important, impact me and many of you, and most of the players involved are self-interested buffoons. And I have started some posts on them, and quickly drop them like Sarah Palin would drop a coherent thought. Why? Because this blog is my escape from such stuff.

6- Sex and the City 2 - I luuuv the series, was ok with the first movie, and then was really disappointed with part deux. Besides the whole rich people cavorting in a recession misfire, the characters have lost any semblance to reality, and while the clothes were great and there were a few laughs, the movie was too long and too frivolous. Bring on part three and redeem yourselves!

7- My obsessive love of The Golden Girls: They rock. Enough said!