Enough About Me... How About You? What Do You Think Of Me?
Wednesday, November 30, 2005Put your back into it...
On Saturday, I will be participating in my very first alumni event here in the big city. We have quite an active alumni association in the city, with monthly events that I have yet to attend. That all changes this weekend with the Alumni Habitat for Humanity Build. I am so excited! I’ve always wanted to participate in a build and I love doing volunteer work, particularly this time of year.
Better watch out, I’ve got my steel-toed boots and I’m ready to use a nail gun (they’ll let me use a nail gun, right?). I’ll try to resist walking around saying, “I’m great with caulk” or “have you ever seen anyone work caulk this way?” like my San Antonio pal… (you've got to read this...).
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 12:48 PM :: 3 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Tuesday, November 29, 2005It's Patrick... He bought life insurance!
Help me out, please. Noogie and I are having a debate of sorts over whether most people have some kind of personal insurance. I don’t mean health insurance and not the obligatory coverage that you get through work, but personal life insurance.
I have two policies. Before I was born, my parents took out a small policy on me, in the event that should I be born with any kind of pre-existing condition that precluded me from qualifying down the road, that I would at minimum, have a small policy to fall back on. When I graduated from university, I purchased another policy – this one being the only other one I’ll need. Again, it made sense to purchase it while still young because of the low policy premiums and the complete ease of obtaining coverage (no physical required). So there, I’m done – and officially worth much more dead than alive…
I suppose that because of my father’s illness and the way that my parents made arrangements to protect our family in case of exactly such an event – that I’ve also ascribed to the same precautionary preparations. And I don't carry the insurance so much for right now, as for that day, somewhere down the road (far, far, down the road - look, you can almost see it... squint... ah, false alarm, it's just a car) when I'll have some kind of significant other with whom I'm sharing my life and want to leave comfortable should anything ever happen to me.
So help me out… how many of you have some kind of life insurance? Send me an email or leave a comment. I think I have a crazy lead so far… Noogie’s got himself, two homeless guys and my doorman on his side – I have my entire family, my co-workers, Cowgirl and her boyfriend as well as Noogie’s sister and his roommate.
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 12:35 PM :: 3 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Sunday, November 27, 2005Ah boo, our girl sells out.
About a year ago, a co-worker mentioned that we were trying to option a song from Canadian songstress, Feist for one of our TV commercials. No-go for us and she had the temerity to turn down MacDonalds too!
Imagine my dismay when today, I'm sitting innocently on my sofa, just vegging in my pjs and watching some Sunday afternoon TV (Little Britain, tee hee) when a Lacoste commercial comes on the tube, set to none other than Feist's own Mushaboom. Gha, another one bites the dust.
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 3:08 PM :: 0 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Saturday, November 26, 2005Sometimes we all need to have a little work done.
Time for a new look! Most of the blogs that I read everyday have refreshed their look and I'll admit it - I was jealous.
So here it is... the new version of me. Hope you like it.
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 8:18 AM :: 5 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Thursday, November 24, 2005Visible minority
It’s not often that I feel out of place. Yeah, not even sure if I felt out of place so much as the focus of more than my usual share of attention (which is generally quite a bit to begin with…). I was at an industry conference yesterday – 1,100 people, of which maybe (MAYBE) 50 were women. (Aside: oh for frig sakes, please dress professionally! You all know better! You’re all 10 and 15 years older than me! Come on!). Of the 20 or so presenters yesterday, one was a woman.
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 11:39 AM :: 0 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Tuesday, November 22, 2005And I'm back...
Home again, and with luggage, happily. It was a good trip back East, lots of catching up with friends and family, spending time with my mother and grandmother – that sort of thing, as well as to deal with some family business. Aside from work, which was my excuse to travel back, one of the main reasons for the trip was to attend a memorial dedication for my father.
So as many of you know, my father died some 14 years ago – 15 years in early March. This time of year is always a bit of a bummer; its around now that he started to slip out of his very brief remission and we all had to begin to come to terms with what was happening while getting our very young heads around celebrating a last Christmas together. I guess in this context, celebrate isn’t really the word.
I have absolutely no recollection of that last Christmas, other than we had dad home from the hospital for two days and during that brief visit, a friend invited me to go see a movie – I’m pretty sure it was Home Alone (yes, the original!). I remember coming home from the movie, going downstairs and telling him about it. That’s my last memory of him and I having a chat, as such. From that point on, it’s all hospital memories – you know – the ones that haunt me today with the smell and the chill.
Something about this year is tougher than usual. Perhaps it’s because this year is a milestone year for me – I’ve officially lived half my life without him, well, more than half now. I find that he’s on my mind a lot – which is not unusual. What’s different is that I feel much, much more sadness. In a – watching the Barbarian Invasions AGAIN so I can cry and try to clean out that awful feeling that lodges in my chest – kind of way.
So in that same kind of cathartic way, I looked forward to going to the dedication with my mother. Years ago, my father worked for a senior’s housing development and during their recent milestone celebration, they decided to rename one of their main rooms after my father. A lot of his former work colleagues were in attendance, as well as residents that had been there so many years ago when he started working there. It was just one of those things that reminded me how special he was, not just to us, but to so many other people. It also allowed me to reconnect with a lot of these people, and their memories of him and us as children.
It definitely worked to bring things to a head – nothing like facing all of this head-on. And in doing so – in letting all of this sort of wash in and then back out, it laid bare all the other issues that have been collecting behind the scenes, waiting to be dealt with. Although I certainly haven’t solved/resolved all the issues that loom, at least I see them clearly now, and they’re no longer tied into the other emotions. I can be a bit more objective.
So here’s to taking a deep breath and not having it feel like I’m only filling half my lungs. With any luck, I’ll be sleeping through the night regularly soon as well.
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 2:57 PM :: 1 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Friday, November 18, 2005Started out fighting, it seems we're on our way to making up.
So far, the East coast is not as friendly as I remember it…
Ah let’s see… no luggage. Giant spider on my pillow. No stores open beyond 12 AM. Ghetto work car. Death threats to the Air Canada call centre.
Transcript of my call to the Air Canada baggage locator call centre:
BEG: I am not giving you my home address. You’ll send my luggage there instead
Air Canada: M’am, you have to give me your home address. It’s procedure.
BEG: Guarantee me that it won’t end up at my home addresss.
Air Canada: M’am, I cannot guarantee anything.
BEG: I am not giving you my home address.
Air Canada: I cannot process your inquiry unless you give me your home address.
BEG: So help me if you send my bag to my home address, I will come and find you… do you understand me?
Air Canada: Fine, we can process your claim without it.
Turns out that the call centre is in New Delhi, which is likely why I could barely understand what she was saying and also accounted for her nonchalant reaction to my quasi-threats. Good thing for her, because I was ready to kill. The only thing these people are any good at is making people more angry. Anyhow, four flights later, it finally arrived. Too late though, I had to go to the memorial dedication with two-day old clothes. MAD. Every single flight that came in, I was promised that my luggage would be on it. So I waited. After two flights, I went shopping. Do you think I could find anything? No. The only crap that stores have right now is holiday fashions with idiot stuff stuck all over it. Merde. Tears.
However, lesson learned. Through the whole thing, other than my blind rage with the call centre, I was remarkably zen with the actual baggage people at the airport and made quite a few jokes about how under-dressed I was. Normally I can’t shake irate.
Anyhow, I’m freshly dressed in my new Stella McCartney jacket (more on that next week), have a fabulous new haircut/color thanks to my East Coast stylist (and coolest person EVER) and miracle of all miracle… despite sleeping in the spider room last night, I actually slept through the night. Must be the fresh air…
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 11:18 AM :: 0 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Tuesday, November 15, 2005Mmmm, saltines and water.
Nope, not in prison – just really hung over. Thank you very much, pint night at the Volo. I blame the big, comfy couch. Also, I blame the new cutie waiter boy (who, incidentally MIGHT be on heroin…) – he was very much at our beck and call. Damn his attentiveness and our never-empty glasses.
But despite the evil hangover, last night was great. It was one of those fabulous nights when all the typical conversation barriers get washed away in a flood of beer. Mmmm… beer.
Whooo, anyway… So yeah – the dish. Well, of course I’m not going to spill what we talked about. But I would like to remark upon the fact that there are very, very few people in the world that I connect with in such a way that I can say anything. Even if it embarrasses me. Maybe we’re equally mental? Hmmm… But it got this stuff out of my head, where it’s been essentially running around incessantly (to the point of my not sleeping for the last three weeks – argh).
Now if I could just remember the phone conversation I had last night before I fell asleep… that’s awkward.
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 12:52 PM :: 1 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Monday, November 14, 2005Hawaii, where are you?
Hey Vermont Girl (should I call you Hawaii?)... send me an email... where you at? Where you be? Can Greektown and I come visit????
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 4:36 PM :: 0 Comments: ---------------------------------------OUCH! What the eff was that??? Oh yeah... the glass ceiling.
I love what I do, hate who I work for.
Ever have those days when you are so mad that you want to walk out the door and never look back? Today is one of those days. I’ve been working with a headhunter, but I think it’s time to get aggressive, perhaps throw my resume on Monster or Workopolis. Seriously, I work for the most sexist company in the entire world. Argh.
Guess it’s good to get these little slaps in the face now and again though – keeps the motivation up for leaving. I was honestly on the fence about it for about a year, but the last six months have done nothing except hit me again and again with the need to put this experience behind me. It’s too bad – like so many organizations, you have a ton of great people and one or two people that just make it intolerable.
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 1:59 PM :: 0 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Tuesday, November 08, 2005Neener, Neener, Neener, Neer...
Somebody kidnapped Jason Schwartzman and turned him into the front-man for the Shout Out Louds. Kinda yummy, great voice. As always, the Mod Club delivered yet another fantastic show with the commensurate number of freaks in attendance. What on earth is it about that venue that brings out the strangest people???
In attendance last night was Hilary Duff’s clone, hanging with tall, awkwardly-dancing guy, several people that had fully co-ordinated dances (they must have been practicing ahead of time… if only we’d known) and the star of the freak-show was a woman – say mid-30’s who was wearing what I swear is my original shaker-knit sweater from back in grade 5 (definitely that size), short black pants with RED stockings and funny platform shoes. Oh and a rubber snake around her neck. My favorite of her dance moves, which also included some line dancing, the runway strut and some swing moves, was by far when she danced in a circle around her less-than-impressed (less-than-drunk, too) friend. Oh, then she did it in reverse. Awesome. And all this before the concert even started. You know you’re in for a good night when…
But back to the show… they played their entire cd and a few B-sides (I love that the singer explained what a B-side was) – not a long show by any means – about an hour with the encore. But wow, the songs were all spot on – vocals were great – I love his voice, all rough and as such. The bass player was a source of endless amusement as he bumbled around on stage, flashing sheepish grins to girls in the front, while the other guitar player hid behind his mushroom cap of unruly hair while rocking out. The drummer was, well, a drummer (sorry all drummers out there…) and the xylophone girl… as Greektown described her… she was the poster-girl for the Sweden Tourism Board. “Why is it that we can hear her singing, but every time she says anything into the microphone, she just mouths the words??” I loved that they played the Comeback as their encore… and yes, I did my dance.
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 12:08 PM :: 3 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Monday, November 07, 2005Alright, and now for the show...
So let’s take a break from the deep thoughts and get to something of perhaps greater interest to all of you… my newfound crush on Ben Lee. Touring on his new album, Awake is the New Sleep, Ben Lee played El Mocambo last night to what Greektown described as the biggest crowd she’s seen in the NEW El-Mo.
I’ll admit – prior to last night, I’d not heard a Ben Lee song. I really had no idea what kind of music it was – I’d just heard of him in reference to other musicians that I enjoy, and he was recommended by someone with similar taste. So when I heard he was playing the El-Mo, it was killing two birds with one stone – see Ben Lee, see a show at the El-Mo (probably the only major music venue I’d not been to in the city).
So we hit the El-Mo around 930, and walked in to New Buffalo, the latest and greatest artist to sign with the Arts & Crafts label (Broken Social Scene’s Kevin Drew’s label). New Buffalo – a blondish Australian import with a rather plaintive voice also opened for Feist (ahead of Jason Collett). I was medium on her then and definitely medium on her last night, other than maybe her last few songs, which were really great.
But the main attraction was, of course, Ben Lee and he did not disappoint. I loved the show! Although he definitely had some Gavin Degraw-type lyrics, the music itself was great and his stage presence was fantastic (despite the fact that he’s teeny-tiny and I could put him in my pocket). At one point he pulled a somewhat heavyset girl up on stage as his muse (cheesy, but at least it wasn’t a skank-type) and she primped and posed throughout the song until the end when he motioned her over the microphone to sing the chorus and out comes this MONSTER voice… ah, hello? Canadian Idol? This was definitely romance-pop, (yes, shut up – I’m inventing genres now…) but very well done. Great show and great sound (although, like the Docks, not great viewing – the stage isn’t high enough). Up tonight – the Shout Out Louds from Sweden (Let’s call it the comeback / Neener, neener, neener, neer…), playing favorite venue, the Mod Club.
I should also get caught up on my film reviews… to date I’ve got A History of Violence (ugh), Where the Truth Lies (ah, what???), Kiss Kiss, Bang, Bang (who knew?! ) and Good Night and Good Luck (if ever I wanted to take up smoking…).
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 1:02 PM :: 0 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Friday, November 04, 2005Something to think about.
I’ve been reading WDKY’s site with rapt attention these last few weeks (ah, especially HNT…) and it has provoked all kinds of thoughts about my current relationship. I wouldn’t say that there are an abundance of similarities, perhaps just a common quest to – I don’t have the right word – hmmm - I’m just at a point where feelings either grow or they don’t. It’s like I want to freeze things where they are until I’m clear. Yeah, don’t I wish that I was some simple-type girl that didn’t analyze everything to death (ha!), but oh well – I am. I’ve always liked blaming past life experience (I guess it’s not really blaming as such, if I feel if makes me a better person) for the oh-so-aggravating need to not waste my time.
Ah, some of you may want to point fingers and say “what about Fanny Pack.” I spent three years with a guy that I was certain wasn’t and would never be “the one” (for absolute lack of a better expression). Well, I didn’t feel that I was wasting my time –I was biding my time. I knew that a transfer to Toronto was imminent and that he wouldn’t be coming with me. The short of it is – I knew that he wouldn’t be an obstacle to my move and if I met someone that I really fell for before I left, that it might screw things up. So I was very upfront with Fanny Pack, told him exactly that I was not going to bring him with me when I left, nor was I going to change my mind about leaving. Which meant that we could either break up or keep seeing each other until I left. As it turned out, that’s what we continued to do for the next nine months.
And that’s really the crux of it – not wanting to waste my time. It has nothing to do with age – I have no ticking clocks – it’s just that – what I’ve learned and adapted from – is simply that I have a finite amount of time and I see no need to throw a huge amount of effort behind something that I’m ultimately (Ha! You think I’m going to say regret – trick’s on you – I don’t believe in regret, only a lesson learned) not going to want or doesn’t fit. And of course, there’s the fact that for the most part, I just want to be happy. All of this – the not wasting time – helps me spend more time enjoying myself. Okay, so I take a few weeks to do some hard thinking, well… at least I’m not spending months or years wondering “hmmm, is this it? Is this what I want?”
Don’t I wish that I could think about these things in real time… decide on the fly – without having to take a mental time-out (but NOT a break!!!) to think things through. But I do. I’m a horribly complicated, high-maintenance girl that always has to think things through. I guess that when your life gets turned upside-down when you’re a kid, all you want for the rest of your life is to be sure.
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 12:03 PM :: 3 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Thursday, November 03, 2005I can't explain.
I want to be in a relationship – love and be loved. Don’t have much use for marriage and definitely don’t have children on the brain (sidebar: I have a complicated view on children. I think that one parent should be the full-time parent – if possible even staying at home for a few years, before pre-school – but I know absolutely that I don’t want it to be me. Which leaves me rather limited because not a whole lot of guys are willing to give up a few years of their lives, but I digress.). But in wanting just a good old-fashioned relationship that maybe. eventually. leads to living together (but you can’t say that that’s where you want it to go, because then there’s a timeline imposed – some imaginary clock that starts ticking towards “how do we make two households fit into one?”), am I selling myself short?
It seems to me that the people who want more have an easier time of it. You know, it’s really complicated when it comes right down to explaining that you want a relationship to be going somewhere, but not have any of that tangible ring-on-finger stuff to point towards (oh God, NOT there!!!!)… just a fuzzy “in love” stasis. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not in any rush for any of it – but it occurred to me recently that what I want may not be what most people want. It’s tough – trying to explain that you want more, but not the more that anyone else wants.
Non-sexual life partners are the way to go. None of this messy let’s-get-married stuff (well, except for the aforementioned commitment ceremony which is just and excuse to have a cake buffet, poutine and garlic fingers at midnight and do a choreographed dance).
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 12:12 PM :: 3 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Wednesday, November 02, 2005There are days when you just have to be grateful...
I had a fantastic meal last night at the Keg Mansion with 601 (check out his blog…) and friends. Got to chat with 601’s mom (remind me again what she is? Something something… nuclear physicist?) and see friends that I don’t often get to see. Amazing, amazing meal. Loved the part when 601 opened one of his gifts and it included a set of army men that he and Sporty set up on the table and so that they could play out what it would be like if the two of them were in a war zone. It involved shooting at barbed wire and the two of them fighting each other a lot. The fake cell phone was a real treat too – if you want more detail on the night, ask Sporty – he was taking notes in his pretty new diary (provided he hasn’t swallowed the key as some kind of army thing).
I’m seeing one of my other favorite bands of the year on Monday night… the Shout Out Louds. Very fun – especially when I do my impression of the Swedish Chef from the Muppets. Oh and also seeing Ben Lee on Sunday night at the El-Mo. MUST get to Rotate This on the weekend to pick up tickets to Belle Orchestre.
I’m getting a free trip to the East Coast for work – I really, really miss my mother and need a dose of SJ Flames. I really want to hang with my grandmother too. (must make hair appointment!!!)
I picked up my new specs yesterday and feel very posh. Why have I never had red frames before?
Someone dropped NBA Raptors tickets on my desk for tonight’s home opener. Whoohoo corporate seats!
Picked up tickets for Jason Collett AND the Stars. I’m actually giddy about seeing the Stars. The STARS!!! At Lee's Palace no less!!!
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 12:08 PM :: 0 Comments: ---------------------------------------
Tuesday, November 01, 2005Things you must not do (even if it is Halloween)
You must not take anything other than your regular set of keys with you to the parking garage in case they randomly decide to deactivate your fob and you get trapped in the parking garage for 15 minutes until your friend sends the security guard to come get you (‘cause we all know that waving at the security cameras and mouthing the words “I’m trapped” don’t help, nor does the EFFING deactivated intercom system). PS – I HATE that security guard.
You must not eat 4 giant jello shots (jello cups, really) on the subway on the way to the party. Likely not a great idea to eat 5 more when you get to the party.
You must not yell out of the front window of your friend’s house at four guys in leather jackets trying to break into a car. When the robbers turn around to see who’s yelling and everyone else at the window ducks – it’s likely not a great idea to wave at them. Also not helpful to suggest that they break into another car up the street instead of the one in front of the party house (jello shot logic).
You must not ask a 10 year-old boy who’s dressed up as Mogatu from Zoolander to “show me your Blue Steel!” It becomes awkward when the kid has no idea what you’re talking about and the parents usher them away.
You must not judge the trailer-park trick-or-treaters who show up at your door with a 2 year-old child (dressed as a pumpkin!) and the mom, dad and kid all ask for candy.
Yeah, four out of five of these were me (I had an assist on the fifth). I love Halloween. Hopefully my fabulous earmuff hairdo disguised me sufficiently from the robbers.
Posted by Brown Eyed Girl :: 3:24 PM :: 3 Comments: ---------------------------------------