Very Popular With 5-6 Year Olds

Rachel and I did the veil dance for extra practice today, but we had an audience: Grand Master B’s kindergarten/grade 1 class.

The kids loved the hell out of us. One little girl even said, “That was the best dance I have ever seen!” Heh! Rachel and I also hit ‘em with a mini dance lesson, a little history,  some geography, and a little positive-body-image stuff.  Not bad.

Some moms came to watch, and they seemed to like us. Also, I think I might have to go back after school and ask to be friends with B’s teacher. Boy, is she cool!

Commando Gardening

I am in love with my garden. I have a little plot for vegetables, where I have peas, beans, tomatoes, and basil. Never mind that there probably isn’t enough sun for all of them to grow in optimal conditions, I’m trying anyway.

And “I’m trying anyway” is my motto for the rest of the garden. Really, I have more weeds and badly situated, ill-thought-out plants than actual plants that are features. That happens when you rent, and especially when you decide to garden in a space that has been benignly neglected for a decade.

I have so many weeds on the west side of the backyard that I have decided to smother them with cardboard (aka mulch) and dig up the few bluebells and columbines to plant back later. I don’t know if it will work, but it’s better than digging up two hundred and fifty square feet of weeds(Not including the weeds that are in the actual ‘lawn’). What I should do about the eight-foot maple sapling I just discovered, I don’t know.

That makes it seem like I have a huge backyard that stretches for acres. I don’t. It’s just that at this time of year, everything grows so fast.  I leave in the morning and I think the blackberries are under control. By 9 PM, I have three new shoots mocking me with their mad invasion skillz.

I don’t know what to do. I can’t fight Mother Nature this much. She’s working all the hours of the day, growing weeds (and basil and peas and beans and tomatoes), and I have to go out and work and stuff. But the weeds grow fastest, and I don’t know if I can beat them, but I’m trying anyway.

The funny thing is, I really believe that if I try hard enough, I’ll defeat the weeds.

ZOMG Star Trek!

Explosions! And Space Cowboys! And strong women! And time travel! And scary creatures! If you have not already, go see this movie now. It won’t change your life, but it will keep you thoroughly entertained.

Also: I know I have been with E “Mr Star Trek Fan” for too long.  I got every single in-joke.  And I have to admit, I love that.

Victoria Day Weekend Redux

Man, I love three day weekends. I always spend Sunday thinking, “Hey, this is like Saturday and I have a whole other day!” Now, I know Queen Victoria has been gone a long time, but I do like celebrating her birthday. Even though it’s actually on the 24th. But still.

I got some beans, basil, and broccoli seeds into the garden.  E laughed at me when he caught me chanting, “Okay….Go!” at them. But the last laugh is on him. If I grow it, he has to eat it.

Because it was so warm yesterday, E put on shorts and barbecued some steaks.  Even though it’s rainly today, he’s still wearing shorts, because “Summer’s here. I put shorts on.” I’m not going to call his logic into question. I’m just going to let him have cold legs.

On Friday night, I learned to play Risk. Well, I don’t know if it took or not. I do know not to show mercy.  I let Simon stay on the board with one piece and he later came back and helped Jim wipe me off the map. Except for Alaska. I held onto it.

Reading ‘Gemini Summer’, a Governor General winner for young adults. I have to say that right now, I think it was a winner because it was an Edifying Book, and not, in fact, something kids want to read. All seven of my blog readers know that I have a thing against Edification Through Litratchoor.  Hell, I raced through the latest Rick Riordan about Percy the demigod without stopping to look up. I’m like a compass for populist lit, both for kids and adults. Is it Good For Me? Um, no thanks, then.

Still not writing. Maybe I’ll cook for the denizens of Camp Oolican instead.

Anyhow, I’m looking forward to a short week. Happy Monday night, all of you!

Woody’s Here!

So yesterday a special package arrived for me.  Inside,  along with a lovely little notebook, bookmark, and camera case, was Woody the Wandering Wol.

Woody is a felted owl created by a very talented fabric artist in my Photo-a-Day group. We send him around among us in the group, and he sees all our local sights. We take pictures of him in front of famous stuff.

Monday I’m going out to take pictures with Woody. I love Photo-a-Day because it’s making me a better photographer and because it’s made me not only unembarrassed, but even excited about taking a little felted owl around my city, looking for photo-ops.

Where should we go?

Four More Years.

I apologize if everyone is tired of thinking about this. I know I’m late, and the fateful vote was three whole days ago. But I’ve been incoherent with rage and heartsick and despondent and I am just getting around to putting it into words.

Gordon Campbell is still the premier. And he’s still the MP for my riding.

I understand how this happened. Economic uncertainties, don’t switch horses in the middle of the stream, strong economic policy. Blah blah blah.

But really? With all those forestry folks out of work? Ambulances on strike? Hospital support staff outsourced to the cheapest bidders? Tuition and bus fares raised? Education funding cut again? Privatization all over the goddamn map?

I understand there was a low voter turnout. But why? Are people so beaten low that they can’t even bestir themselves to put a checkmark on a ballot? Do they think they don’t matter? Because I cannot believe for one minute that the majority of folks in this province want that smarmy shitheel making economic decisions for them.

Maybe in four years, up to our necks in Olympic debt, routinely shaken down by meth-addicted homeless people, unable to get Emergency Services to our homes in under an hour, treated like second-class citizens for needing to go on Employment Insurance, seeing our children fail because they get no attention in an overstretched teacher’s classroom, standing helpless as our elderly die in the hallways of hospitals because there are no beds or nurses, maybe then we’ll decide it’s a good idea to vote.

Not A Fan

So the Canucks are out of the playoffs.  As for myself, I think it’s a nice chance for them to go golfing, but I have friends who are fans, and they’re bitterly disappointed.

I never know what to say. A sports fan whose team has lost is a creature I do not understand. Nor do I know what’s appropriate. It’s like they’re in a kind of mourning.  Their heroes have let them down. It’s a very personal thing.   I want to say, “I’m sorry about the Canucks,” in appropriately somber tones, because they are clearly grieving.

And yet! A bunch of millionaires slid around on some ice and failed to get a rubber disc into a net more times than the other team.

I apologize to the fans out there, but I just can’t care very much.

Civil Disobedience

My dad doesn’t much like the Liberal candidate for Cow  Bay.  So yesterday night he went out and drew a big mustache on her campaign picture.

And then he signed his name, because he like to take responsibility for his actions.

This will be interesting to watch.

Cane Dance

So tonight Rachel and I danced with Team Hareem out in Maple Ridge, at a benefit for breast cancer. Damn, it was fun.

I decided a while ago that I would do more performing, and more getting-my-shimmy-out-there, but this was (I think) the biggest space I’ve performed in.Plus it was a real theater, with real people out there, instead of friends and family.

In the dressing rooms, our desert-coloured tunics definitely stood out amidst the swirl of silk and satin and coin belts and sparkly body gel and coin bras and pompoms and acres and acres of flesh.

Waiting in the wings, I helped Kathleen retie her coin headdress. I hoped it wouldn’t fall off. Then we were on.

I couldn’t see the audience. It was dark out there. But in the limelight, we smiled and cavorted, zagreeted and shook it, and Rachel did such an awesome job of being the ham that stays onstage, we were a massive hit.

I can’t wait to perfome again!

Accidental Party Girl.

I thought I was done for the night. E and I had already been to Rubin’s farewell party where all the men compared cell phones and iTouches and little things, and all the women talked about the weather and gardening and how fun it would be to be able to buy a house for $139,000 (in rural Quebec, the sticking point).  E and I were home on the couch, and I was contemplating writing a blog post about the fact that the iTouch has a ‘flashlight’ setting that is just a blank, white screen. Then my phone rang.


“What’s up?” It’s Morgan, and he sounds a little drunk.

“We just saw wrestling at the Russian Community Centre. It’s Daniel’s stag. Come out for a drink. We’re going to Dilby’s”


He asks the other guys what the name of the place is. “Darby’s.” Darby’s is a block from my house.  It would be easy.

Inside my head: I’m kind of tired. And we’ve got the cane dance tomorrow. Hell, I don’t want to dance hung over. But I don’t have to be hung over. Go for a beer. Come home. It’ll be fine. Yeah, right. Like it’s always fine with Morgan. For your only friend who wears a suit, how come he’s the worst influence? Well, he doesn’t have to be, tonight. You can just take twenty bucks, buy Daniel a drink, and be done.

“...Okay. I’ll see you there in ten minutes.”

E looks at me.

“Morgan. It’s his friend Daniel’s stag.”

“Okay,” says the unflappable E.

At Darby’s, Daniel is wearing a shirt with a bunch of writing on it: Tasks to complete. Also, he has a blue and silver cape on. I drink some beer. Daniel’s cousin is deploring the miserliness of the women who won’t give Daniel their panties. One of Daniel’s tasks is to collect two pairs of women’s underwear.  “In Victoria, we’d have, like, six pairs of panties by now,” the cousin complains. I had no idea Victoria was so liberal.

Time passes. Beer passes. Tequila rears its ugly head. I take pity on Daniel and run home to get him some underwear. “I’ll be back in a bit,” I tell E. “I just have to give Daniel some panties.”

He looks up from the TV. “You’re not giving him ones you like, are you?” (This is one of the best things about E. He’s not worried about me loaning some underwear to a guy, he’s worried that they’re a pair that I’ll miss.) Back at the bar, Daniel puts the underwear around his neck.

Tara and Allison, the woman who will be marrying Daniel, arrive just as I’m leaving. Tara gives me a huge hug and some Mardi Gras beads.

“I gave your husband some underwear,” I tell Allison. “I got them from home, so they’re clean. I hope that’s okay.” She assures me it is, and I toddle off home.

Miraculously, I do not have a hangover. Maybe it was panty karma looking out for me.

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